Reviewed By: James H on 04/08/2011
Rating: [5 of 5 Stars!]
I am still in the 10 day waiting period to pick mine up in California. This was my first purchase from Buds and I was a little worried it wouldn't come with the magazines or something, since it was the lowest price I could find. Also, these pistols are reportedly hard to find at all, but Buds had them in stock.
It arrived with everything, so Buds didn't short change.
I became interested in this gun largely based upon the reputation of a different Beretta 22, the 70 series. That has a reputation for incredible reliability. Unfortunately, the 70 series is very hard to find, at least in California. Some reviews had claimed the 87 was picky, but many others made it sound like it would eat anything. I decided to take a chance.
This pistol is somewhat compact and can be carried cocked and locked or be fired in double action. For whatever reason I was anti double action, but then decided it was a bonus over the 70 series since this pistol is DA/SA. Double action for a semi enables you to pull the trigger again on a dud round, something not possible on a single action only (ie, Ruger MkIII). Also, you can carry with a round in the chamber and the hammer down, perhaps desirable compared to cocked and locked. DA/SA provides options.
This pistol is also very handsome compared to the few semi 22 pistols available new today. I think most Ruger 22s are ugly (some models look nice, though), and they're huge. The Buckmark is nice but huge, too. The P22 feels like a toy ready to fly apart (I rented one at a local range). The Pheonix Arms and its clones look OK but I'd worry about one flying apart, too. The Beretta 21 is not available new in Cali. The Beretta 87 looks great.
The pistol arrived in a plastic case with a California approved lock and two magazines. I am still waiting to pick it up, but I checked the magazine release when registering the gun: the magazine popped out half way - nice! I believe it comes with a magazine disconnect, a "feature" which can make mag removal hard for the various pistols which come with that, but it looks like Beretta did this one right.
Downer: the mags should be able to hold ten, don't know why Beretta limited them to eight. There is also a ten round version which is a little longer, sold with the 87 Target. I haven't found any indication that these will fit in the Cheetah, but I don't know why they wouldn't, and they look identical other than the larger "butt" on the ten rounder. I'll update the review after I try the Cheetah with a ten rounder from a rental Target.
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