The MSP: Seecamp .32 LWS

Discussion in 'General Firearms Forum' started by Scott60, Jun 14, 2020.

  1. Scott60

    Scott60

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    I recently added this to my collection. Glock doesn't make a tiny pistol, but maybe they should!
    Seecamp 32LWS RS.jpg
    The modern small pistol (MSP) is little respected these days, due to the "tactilization" of personal carry, and that's a shame because it's so much easier to carry a truly small gun in a wide variety of ways, than even a scrunched-down 9mm which is still pretty big, heavy, and demanding of special carry solutions.
    I own a smattering of small pistols and for years I wanted to add the Seecamp but it wasn't available until recently. When I saw it I snapped it up immediately! In the age of polymer frames, the Seecamp is all stainless steel yet manages to tip the scales at just over 10 ounces and around 13 ounces fully stoked with 6+1 rounds of .32 auto. The Seecamp is DAO which is surprisingly smooth and even. When manually racking the slide, a point of grittiness can be felt as the bushing that retains the firing pin in the slide passes over the hammer face, but this doesn't impede functioning. Overall quality of the piece is excellent but shy of "perfect." The feed ramp is generously angled into the chamber area with an obvious transition line and this contributes to the glass-smooth feed when chambering rounds. Also, the magazine sets well high above the frame, placing the cartridge centerline much closer to the bore axis than other pistols which means the rounds barely have to tilt and bobble on their way into the chamber.
    Being made as a deep concealment backup, the Seecamp has a heel release magazine that's quite stiff being that it's powered by the main spring. Also, the slide is difficult to grip due to it's small size and slick surface. The cocking serrations help a bit, but the double coil recoil spring makes retracting the slide fully difficult. I'm not a fan of assistive devices to operate firearms, but in this case a proper slide racker would come in handy. The tiny magazine is easy to load and has just enough angle to insure the rims of the semi-rimmed .32 cartridge indexes into the cartridge below to avoid rim lock.
    Disassembly is somewhat "fiddly" in that the magazine must be seated far enough to deactivate the magazine release, and the slide drawn back against both recoil spring and hammer force far enough to insert a .32 auto case between barrel and breech. This locates a small hole in the slide over a spring-loaded plunger that must be pushed in using a small punch. This allows the slide to lift up at the rear. Sounds simple but in reality the first time I went through the exercise I was frustrated by the fact that even while pushing the hidden pin as hard as possible, the slide wouldn't release! I managed to lift the slide a smidge, then used a small plastic mallet to tap it up until it let go. I discovered a groove along the inside of the slide that mates with a short rail section plunger retainer. Fully pushed in the plunger still protruded a bit, so I touched it up with a file to bring it level (when depressed) with the frame, and now the slide and be lifted straight up by hand without a mallet.
    Seecamp disassembled.jpg
    For size comparison:
    Seecamp v J-frame size.jpg
    This thing can easily be carried loose in a pocket, or in a pocket holster. Being DAO with about 11 pounds needed on the trigger to pull the hammer over center, the gun not going to suddenly decide to fire even with an unprotected trigger.
    The gun is restricted to HP nose design ammo. I have two different brands of .32 loaded with a 60 grain XTP profile bullet, but one has the bullet seated deeper to around 0.905" overall length. Those fit in the magazine without binding and feed perfectly. The other has the bullets seated to 0.940" and bind in the magzine due to the blunt nose rubbing either side of the inner radius. However, with the right length ammo, feeding is flawless in the extreme! I thought my Beretta 3032 Tomcat was a smoother feeder (and it is), but this thing makes the Beretta feed stroke seem unnecessarily bumpy!
    Seecamp 32LWS LS.jpg
    An interesting feature is the presence of a recessed ring inside the chamber just ahead of where the feed ramp taper ends. The ring runs all the way around the chamber and delays slide opening during firing by action of the brass expanding just enough into the ring recess to create a delay in opening...hence the little Seecamp is a "delayed" blowback pistol versus models like the Tomcat.
    Here is a link to a size comparison with the Glock 43:
    https://www.handgunhero.com/compare/glock-g43-vs-lw-seecamp-lws-32
     
  2. AZ Husker

    AZ Husker

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    Great little guns. I lucked into a Milford original model .32 a few years back and couldn't turn it down. I was expecting some recoil, but I thought, "It's only a .32". Wow that little sucker kicks! I wouldn't want to fire a .380.
     
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  3. collim1

    collim1

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    I have a soft spot for the little .32 autos. I love them. When I first started in law enforcement most often he old timers were still carrying Seecamp and Beretta .32’s in their back pockets.

    I have always wanted a Seecamp in .25 or .32

    My jogging gun is a Keltec .32 with a pocket clip installed.
     
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  4. ak103k

    ak103k

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    Seecamps are great little guns. Over the years Ive had two, and I still have the first one I bought.

    I always considered them to be the guns all others of the type should be judged by. They are a piece of art.

    Mine were of the "Silvertip" era, and that was the only ammo recommended. These days, I see they now have some other alternatives.

    Mine ran 100% with the Silvertips, and up until recently, were all I used in them for carry. I recently tried some of the Privi Partizan 32's they recommended, and they worked just as well. A lot cheaper than the Silvertips these days too.

    32 ball ammo that I tried in the past usually wouldnt fit in the mag. Someone had mentioned that if you removed the spacer in the mag, ball would usually work. I tried that, and found that it did in fact work with the ball I tried. I think it might have been Remington, but its been awhile.
     
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  5. Orive 8

    Orive 8

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    Back around 1986-87 I purchased one. A friend had one and his worked 100% reliably, so I decided to get one too. Mine never worked, I sold it off quickly. Most likely it was mag issue's but I didn't really care enough to try to get it to work.

    I've seen them from time to time at shows and stores, but really haven't had any desire to revisit them. Since 1990 or so I haven't had the need for a MSP - a J frame has filled my "I'm not carrying a gun" gun role and really the only gun that has come close to that is the Glock 42 for me.
     
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  6. mmcbeat

    mmcbeat

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    OP, you are probably aware but there is a Seecamp forum at seecamp.com.
     
  7. DrewBone

    DrewBone

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    'Cute lil' sucker! I recently became interested in a 32 model and I'm just waiting for my often lazy self to put the moves on one.

    Not that it matters, but did you intentionally have to purchase the "California Edition"?

    Thanks for the detailed post and images...I hope that it treats you well :D
     
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  8. alnicoG22

    alnicoG22

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    I have two Seecamps purchased in 2000 after a 3Y10M wait.
     
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  9. Scott60

    Scott60

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    You have a problem with my posting here? Is this not the "GENERAL FIREARMS" forum? If ANY gun postings should not be here they are postings about Glock branded firearms which should be appropriately placed in the "Glock Firearms" forum.
    Since you seem to have an issue with the posting of Seecamp firearms here in the General Firearms forum, please instruct me as to which other brands of firearms offend you so I will know to avoid posting them here in the General Fireams forum.

    Thank you for reminding me that gun snobbery is alive and well.
     
  10. Scott60

    Scott60

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    Well, in California it's kind of difficult to avoid purchasing the California version! The price of used Seecamps tends to be as high, or higher than new, and the only thing that differentiates the California model is the little push-button trigger safety that blocks the trigger from moving, which is redundant to the magazine release "safety" that also blocks the trigger from moving.

    Initially I removed the button since the trigger functions just fine without it, but I didn't like the look of the gaping hold through the trigger, so until I get around to ordering a standard trigger from Seecamp I decided to put the button back in. All the button does it slide back and forth - doesn't even have an index point. When pressed from the right side toward the left, the button is stopped by the frame plate and this is the "off" position. When pressed on the left side toward the right, the button moves ouside the trigger slot width and contacts the frame when the trigger is pulled. A small spring places tension on the button so it doesn't slide inadvertently.
    I would never carry the pistol with the trigger safety "on" because it's too fiddly to fool with under stress and the DAO trigger works just fine as a safety mechanism.
     
  11. Pier23

    Pier23 Silver Member

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    I love both my .25 and .32. Have pondered getting the “trifecta” .380, but even the .25 is miserable to shoot. A .380 Seecamp would be a palm-sized 500 on the pain scale. A range toy they are not.

    For good or ill, time has passed Seecamp by for me. It has been replaced by a polymer KelTec .380, which I frankly don’t have to worry about much. Any ammo is fine, production standards are fine for the purpose- as an EDC, “adequate” is preferable to “really cool”.

    As an engineering exercise, Seecamp is, IMHO, in its own class. As a knock-around EDC, other options have for me been more suitable.
     
  12. bac1023

    bac1023

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    They were always nice guns.

    Congrats! :cool:
     
  13. mmcbeat

    mmcbeat

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    Dang, I was just trying to be helpful. I’m a member over there. Believe it or not, you can get some good advise and tips on a dedicated forum. I have posted there and on GT about my Seecamps.
     
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  14. Mr Meeseeks

    Mr Meeseeks

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    Don’t think that was his intention at all. Sometimes when folks talk about casting bullets I point them toward castboolits forum. No way was that post intended to offend.
     
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  15. alnicoG22

    alnicoG22

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    Running is the only time I don't carry a gun. I do carry a Kel-Tec 32 while hiking.
     
  16. Out West

    Out West Just lack finishing up

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    OP, nice acquisition! I'm a fan of the small pistol for pocket carry. My choice in 32 is the poor man's Seecamp.
    View attachment 773994 IMG_20200615_101106507.jpg
     

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Jun 15, 2020
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