The Seecamp LWS32 is the smallest .32 ACP pistol in production. It’s double-action only, has all-stainless steel construction and a magazine disconnect that blocks the slide from being fully retracted in addition to blocking the trigger when there is no magazine inserted. It’s not a light-weight pistol at 11.5 oz. unloaded, but it is tiny. It is limited in the ammunition that will fit in the magazine because it is the same length as the LWS25 in .25 ACP, so cartridges need a short over-all length. In 1985 when these came out they specified Winchester Silvertip hollow-points. Not because they’d expand- they won’t from this gun- but because they were the only commercial ammo that fit in the magazine. Their website has a much longer list these days.
These were no longer made and were increasingly collectable, but recently the company’s new owner has put them back in production, carrying over the original features. They also carry over a feature that few people talk about. They are snappy as hell, and depending on your ammunition and the size of your fingers they can be brutal. It’s not how hard it smacks your hand, it’s the trigger-guard mashing into your trigger-finger.
OK, this is a last-ditch self-defense pistol or back-up, and if you need it pain will be the least of your concerns. But I like to practice. Practice is important and if it hurts I won’t want to.
Recoil is exacerbated by a feature of the new guns: sharp edges. Everywhere there is a corner the edge is sharp. Specifically on the inside of the trigger guard, and this translates, for me and many others, into pain with every shot. In a pocket it will translate into eating it’s way through the lining. Not good. Of course you should use a pocket holster, but it’s so small and light there is a temptation to just drop it in a pocket on occasion.
Being me I decided to fix it by beveling the corners. Then I figured since my trigger-finger catches on the front of the trigger guard when I move from the safe to fire position I should deal with that. The list grew rapidly. Because me.
By the end I’d done quite a lot, and I’ll detail that in the captions.
So what’s the upshot of all of this? The feel of recoil is dramatically improved and no longer punishing. The port was the last thing done, and it makes a noticeable difference. Of course it reduces velocity slightly; in testing this amounted to the loss of 2 ft/lbs. of energy at the muzzle. That seems like a good trade-off!
I’ll need to shoot it a lot more with a variety of ammunition, but I’m very happy with the results so far. OK, maybe it’s a little nuts to do all of this to a weapon of this type. But can you really say your surprised I would? Because after all, me.
Stay safe and take care,
Michael Tinker Pearce, 4 November 2022
At some point test the Seecamp against the Keltech P32. The P32 is locked breech and is very mild to shoot, not snappy like the Seecamp
My wife had one, and it was quite pleasant to shoot. It’s a bit bigger but is even lighter. The locked breech really makes a difference!
I bought my wife’s LWS32 and my LWS380 while Larry was still alive. Neither is particularly pleasant to shoot, but in a situation where such hardware is needed, they’re more pleasant than the alternative. For those seeking even more impressive recoil, there once was a single-shot .45 ACP pistol entitled the WSP (World’s Smallest Pistol). I had the dubious distinction of testing this little horror with eight different loads, right up to 230-grain GI Ball. To make matters worse, the review was never published…my editor felt that no one should be encouraged to duplicate my efforts.