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Comparing two pocket pistols: Pico vs LCP

Now that I've had the Beretta Pico for awhile I thought it might be fun to compare it to the very similar Ruger LCP. In this case, both pistols were bought within 6 months of each other, from the same LGS and at exactly the same price.

Both were bought new.
Both were on sale at $199.99.
Both are 380acp.
Both hold 6 + 1 rounds.
They are almost identical in size with the Pico slightly skinnier.
The Pico with the mag inserted but no ammo weighs just over 11 ounces while the LCP under the same conditions weighs just under 10 ounces.

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The Ruger LCP comes with a nice little pocket holster but only one magazine while the Beretta Pico comes with a zipper folder and a second magazine.

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The Pico locks open on an empty magazine while the LCP does not. Also the magazine release on the Pico is ambidextrous while the one on the LCP is left side only. Both mags drop free on release but the LCP hits a stop on insert while the Beretta does not. The Beretta magazine is much easier to seat than the one on the LCP.

Fortunately the LCP slide is much easier to rack than on the Pico.

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Not even a hole to allow mag release on this side:
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While we are still on the subject of magazines, they both do have witness holes on both left and right sides to check rounds remaining. The Ruger mag also has round numbers stamped while the Pico assumes you can count empty holes.

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Nether the LCP or the Pico have the dread magazine safety so it's possible to do a hot swap and fire the one in the chamber even if the magazine is removed.

Shooting at the designed distances the two are also pretty similar but the sights on the LCP can only be called such things charitably. I'm not sure it's possible to make less useful sights than what are on the LCP. The Beretta Pico though comes with real, adjustable sights designed for simple owner maintenance, adjustment and replacement. Once you start shooting out beyond 7 yards or so the better sights on the Pico really make a difference. Since that's not what the guns were designed for it's not quite as big an issue, but it is significant.

So how do the two differ?

The big elephant in the room has to be the fact that the Beretta Pico is a true double action pistol with second strike capability. Also the slide locking back on an empty mag definitely makes a difference.

The length of the LCP grip makes it possible for me to get two full fingers on the handle while with the flat base mag of the Pico it's a finger and a half. A smaller padded extension as found on the LCP magazine would really help the Pico.

The field strip procedure on the Pico is light years ahead of that on the LCP. Needing a screw driver to pry out a pin is simply not as easy as just turning the post. Once you get past that point though everything is pretty much the same.

The fit and finish the Pico definitely is way beyond the LCP. The mold lines on the LCP trigger and trigger guard (inside & outside) needed major work before they stopped hurting my fingers. Some 400 grit Wet or Dry sand paper and few minutes or so work took care of the problem. That's not a unique problem to Ruger, I have had to do that on polymer framed guns from Taurus and Charter Arms as well. While there is a noticeable mold line on the Beretta frame it is so minor I have not bothered trying to address it. Maybe now that we are in Bowl season I'll give it a touch up job too.
 

Ad Astra

The Instigator
Thanks for doing this review! Over the years I've developed some mistrust of gunwriters ... too often the latest Remchester has a full page ad in the same issue as the favorable review.

Beretta quality is excellent, and the Pico is attractively priced. Ruger quality, IMO, depends on which Ruger and its assembly line/factory ...

Sights matter - a lot - especially if you're looking at middle age, so some interesting points there. Yes, both are acros-the-table-belly-guns, but since you carry such a thing a lot, longer shots may well arise ...

Going to re-read, but thanks: a professional writeup.


AA
 
Here are some images of the two sets of sights. The ones on the Beretta are milled and slotted and held in place by a .050 Allen screw while on the Ruger they are fixed and part of the slide itself.

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Nice review, I have never carried a pocket-blaster but I did buy my wife a .380 bodyguard many years ago. I would like to see a review of the Taurus Curve .380, seems like a neat little "swiss army" pistol. Then again, if I'm going out I am taking the Glock 19 and nothing smaller or with less capacity - this is just my personal comfort level.
 
Nice review, I have never carried a pocket-blaster but I did buy my wife a .380 bodyguard many years ago. I would like to see a review of the Taurus Curve .380, seems like a neat little "swiss army" pistol. Then again, if I'm going out I am taking the Glock 19 and nothing smaller or with less capacity - this is just my personal comfort level.
Definitely carry what meets your comfort level.

For me it has mostly been smaller and simpler; revolvers over semi-automatics, hammer fired over strikers, generally older over newer.
 

OkieStubble

The Men Who Sniff at Goats
Thanks for doing this review! Over the years I've developed some mistrust of gunwriters ... too often the latest Remchester has a full page ad in the same issue as the favorable review.

Beretta quality is excellent, and the Pico is attractively priced. Ruger quality, IMO, depends on which Ruger and its assembly line/factory ...

Sights matter - a lot - especially if you're looking at middle age, so some interesting points there. Yes, both are acros-the-table-belly-guns, but since you carry such a thing a lot, longer shots may well arise ...

Going to re-read, but thanks: a professional writeup.


AA


+1 Excellent read and comparison. It was a very professional write up.

And Lol'[email protected] "the latest Remchester. :)
 
My wife has and carries the LCP and I have and carry the Pico. She likes the LCP because of the easier slide manipulation, I like the pico for the superior sights.

Your Pico should have come with an extended magazine that fits three fingers. Perhaps they stopped offering it??? Mine came with an extended mag that makes the Pico feel much like a full grip.
The extended mag also holds one extra round.

The Beretta Nano and the Ruger LC9 also exhibit the same differences. The 9mm Ruger being used by my wife and the Nano being used by myself. The Nano and Pico get ignored for the most part by gun magazines and writers. They seem to treat them as 2nd. class also-ran firearms. But in my experience, the Nano and Pico are actually superior in many respects to the guns from other companies.

Both my Beretta's exhibit excellent accuracy for their size. If I do my part they perform excellently. The trigger and ergonomics are not perfect. Nothing in the small to micro sized pistols are perfect, they each have trade-offs and compromises.

On the used market the Nano and Pico get NO respect, and I love that I can buy used ones for under 1/2 the new price. It's a bargain of epic proportions in my opinion. By the way First Gen LCP sell for next to nothing as well and work just fine!

There are bargains galore and hidden gems out there in the gun world today just need to know where to look!
 
My wife has and carries the LCP and I have and carry the Pico. She likes the LCP because of the easier slide manipulation, I like the pico for the superior sights.

Your Pico should have come with an extended magazine that fits three fingers. Perhaps they stopped offering it??? Mine came with an extended mag that makes the Pico feel much like a full grip.
The extended mag also holds one extra round.

The Beretta Nano and the Ruger LC9 also exhibit the same differences. The 9mm Ruger being used by my wife and the Nano being used by myself. The Nano and Pico get ignored for the most part by gun magazines and writers. They seem to treat them as 2nd. class also-ran firearms. But in my experience, the Nano and Pico are actually superior in many respects to the guns from other companies.

Both my Beretta's exhibit excellent accuracy for their size. If I do my part they perform excellently. The trigger and ergonomics are not perfect. Nothing in the small to micro sized pistols are perfect, they each have trade-offs and compromises.

On the used market the Nano and Pico get NO respect, and I love that I can buy used ones for under 1/2 the new price. It's a bargain of epic proportions in my opinion. By the way First Gen LCP sell for next to nothing as well and work just fine!

There are bargains galore and hidden gems out there in the gun world today just need to know where to look!

The Pico did come with the extended magazine and you can see it in the picture of the Pico carry case, but for in the pocket concealed carry I find it is simply a poor design. If you look at the base of the extended base plate you can see a line about a quarter inch down. Had they ended the extension at that point I would have said it was perfect.

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As is, I have a spare flat base plate that I carry as backup and the extended one stays at home and for range sessions.
 
Take the dremmel tool with a cut off wheel and make your cut!
I have one that I did the exact thing you propose to and it works perfectly!
 
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Had both a Pico and Ruger LCP II at the same time a couple years ago. One went to the chopping block.
Still have the Ruger.
Never liked the original LCP but the sequel has proven to be a legit pocket pistol. However, the SIG P365 has since taken over as best of show.
 
The Pico did come with the extended magazine and you can see it in the picture of the Pico carry case, but for in the pocket concealed carry I find it is simply a poor design. If you look at the base of the extended base plate you can see a line about a quarter inch down. Had they ended the extension at that point I would have said it was perfect.

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As is, I have a spare flat base plate that I carry as backup and the extended one stays at home and for range sessions.
How about cutting that off and sanding the edges?
 
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