Upgrading my EdC pocket pistol

Upgrading my EdC pocket pistol

This is a discussion on Upgrading my EdC pocket pistol within the Defensive Carry Guns forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; Over the last couple months I have had a few different posts here about different gun decisions. In the last 1-2 months I settled on ...

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Thread: Upgrading my EdC pocket pistol

  1. #1
    Member Array Lanner's Avatar
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    Upgrading my EdC pocket pistol

    Over the last couple months I have had a few different posts here about different gun decisions.

    In the last 1-2 months I settled on my Beretta Bobcat in .22lr for EDC because its what I can get in my pocket every single time. Now ive read the .22 has a stop rate of about 33 34 percent.

    I have been thinking about moving up to maybe the S&W bodyguard 380 because of the higher stopping power. It also has the features I like ie external safety in a price i can afford under $600.

    What I wanted feedback on was am I missing something. Does someone have a better option? I feel like with the Beretta I can get so much cheap practice in. At 15 yards every round into the head. With a .380 i could get nowhere near that kind of practice.

    I thought about a ppk but thats same size and more expensive. There is the Kahr in 9mm but thats way over budget.

    What do you all think? Its better than a rock.

  2. #2
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    Array buckeye .45's Avatar
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    A .22 is certainly better than a sharp stick, but not something I would carry for self defense. A .380 (for semi-auto) or .38 special (for revolvers), seems to be about the minimum most folks think acceptable for SD (although shot placement is king, it needs the power behind it to hit something vital).

    Does your weapon have to be pocket carried, or have you considered a belt holster? Snub nosed .38 or .357 revolvers are pretty popular choices for cc, and can be pocket carried easily, especially with options like Smith and Wessons airlite J-frames. Their Bodyguard .380 is still pretty much brand new, I'd probably wait a little while and see what other people think about it before buying, make sure any kinks get worked out.

    The Bersa .380 should be well within your price range. Despite the price they are pretty solidly performing pistols (they have some similarities to the PPK's), and not a bad choice, although probably a little bit heavy for pocket carrry. But both of them I have access to are reliable and accurate, and easy to shoot. Also the Ruger LCP or Kel-tec P3AT, both in .380, are more suitable for pocket carry, although they lack an external safety, but both are within your price range as well.

    Then sub-compact 9mm's in the XD, M&P, and Glock lines, which you may be able to find new, or certainly used, in your price range, depending on how good prices are in your part of the nation.

    Hope that helped, or at least gave you some things to research, any more specific questions about the Bersa or a S&W j-frame, I should be able to help since I own them, I'm sure others can chime in about the rest if you want to know more.
    Fortes Fortuna Juvat

    Former, USMC 0311, OIF/OEF vet
    NRA Pistol/Rifle/Shotgun/Reloading Instructor, RSO, Ohio CHL Instructor

  3. #3
    Senior Member Array GlockJS's Avatar
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    For your price range of under $600.00, you have a pleathra of choices as far as guns go for pocket carry. Now, for choice and price of ammo, thats another animal. Unless you've found a cheap source for .380, its gonna be an expensive venture buying a SD gun in that round.

    As far as a recommendation, a snub nose 38 special ain't nothing to sneeze at. True, its a more pricey round then a .22, but that could be said for any other round as well.

    I guess what I'm trying to get to is, there are a lot of factors that you will have to consider and choices you have to make that will be very personal to you. Sorry if this doesn't help. But I'm sure you can get some good advice from here. If you were in my neck of the woods, I wouldn't mind taking you to a few LGS and showing you a few good options.
    Glock 26 9mm, Ruger LCR .357mag

    "Protect yourself at all times."

    "Don't forget, incoming fire has the right of way."-Clint Smith

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  5. #4
    VIP Member Array gottabkiddin's Avatar
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    JMO, A .22LR in quantity will end the fight, if you can put um in the right spot. Like you said, Practice is key with the smaller calibers. On the good side of the .22LR; that little round does a fair amount of damage as it bounces around, once it finds it's target. Personally, I use the .380 as my pocket option. My preference is the Sig P238 with the Buffalo Bore 100gr Hard Cast Flat nose round. The Sig isn't that much larger than the Bobcat and the BB round can't be beat in performance outa the short barrels. If you ever have to use your Bobcat just make sure to apply as necessary. I'd say a good rule of thumb would be, two to the chest and one to the head and repeat if needed.

    Stay safe!


  6. #5
    Senior Member Array MichSteve's Avatar
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    At a budget of $600 you might look at Kel Tec PF-9, or a Kahr PM9 I bought mine for $688 it would not take long to make up the difference in ammo cost compared to a .380. I have a Ruger LCP and the cheapest ammo I find in my area is $18 for 50 rounds of FMJ, the 9mm can be bought at Wal Mart for $9.50 for 50 rounds of FMJ.

    I do pocket carry my PM9, it shoots accurate and is reliable, if I would have purchased the PM9 first before the Ruger LCP I would not have needed the LCP. I will sell my LCP soon, the PM9 is so much easier to shoot and grip, the 9mm cartridge is more powerful and +P can be use in the PM9.

    I had the Ruger LCR 5 shoot .38 special revolver for a while, it was to big to pocket carry and only had 5 rounds, I felt the 380 LCP was a better self defense gun for my needs and it hold 7 rounds. The LCR was traded in on the Kahr PM9 and I am very happy.

  7. #6
    Ex Member Array azchevy's Avatar
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    Save your money and get a p3at and run the buffalo bore "+p" rounds in her. The 90gr JHP are chronoing a little over 1100 fps out of mine. There is no way you are going to be making head shots in a self defense situation as you are more than likely going to be getting off the x and introducing movement into your defensive maneuver because standing still will get you killed so practice making hits to throw the attacker out of his ooda loop, and causing trauma to multiple organs and systems, not head shots.

    People are going to jump me for saying this but self defense weapons do not need or should not have external safeties. That is on less thing to manipulate and or go wrong when stress sets in and tenths of a second count.

  8. #7
    Senior Member Array DIABLO9489's Avatar
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    For $600 you have a lot of options for high quality pistols in much better calibers than .22lr. Here are just a few choices/suggestions...

    .380: Ruger LCP $300-350, KelTec P3AT $250-300, Kahr P380 $550, Sig P238 $550

    9mm: Glock 26 $525, Kahr PM9 $600, KelTec PF9/P11 $300

    .38 Spl: Ruger LCR $425, S&W 637, 638, 642...$480, Charter Arms Off Duty $335

    For inexpensive ammo 9mm and .38 Spl would be your best bet. Obviously not at cheap as shooting .22lr but not very expensive compared to .40 or .45.
    Colt New Agent, Dan Wesson V-Bob, Glock 19,20SF, 23, 26, 27, 29, 30SF, 36, Kahr P380 w/CT, PM9, PM45, CW9(SOLD), Kel-Tec P32, P3AT, PF9(SOLD), Kimber Ultra Crimson Carry II, Stainless Pro TLE/RL II (SOLD), Rohrbaugh R9s, Ruger LCP w/CT, LCR, SP101 S&W J-Frame 638 w/CT, M&P 340 w/CT, Walther PPK/S

  9. #8
    VIP Member Array automatic slim's Avatar
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    You might want to check out gunbroker.com for the guns diablo mentioned. There are many good deals, especially with used guns. For pocket carry, I have a NAA Guardian in .32 ACP. It packs a pretty good whallop with Silvertips, is DAO and has no external safety. They also make it in .380. I paid about $400 new.
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  10. #9
    Member Array Texas solo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by azchevy View Post
    There is no way you are going to be making head shots in a self defense situation as you are more than likely going to be getting off the x and introducing movement into your defensive maneuver
    Excellent point. Everyone should shoot an IDPA match occasionally. Even in stages where there's little movement, head shots are next to impossible when the adrenalin is pumping and your fighting the clock.
    There's a reason the "A" hits are center mass.
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  11. #10
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    To whomever said they would be crucified for saying SD guns should not have an external safety, actually I am the one who would be crucified for wanting one.

    Most of the guns here do not have an external safety and so they fall off my list.

    In response to the pocket carry issue, i really do have to pocket carry for medical reasons. Wasitband, behind the back are all extremely uncomfortable.

    Shoulder holsters work but i dont like the idea of the muzzle being pointed at something im not intending to shoot.

    Bah i need a Ruger lCp with a manual safety is what i need. But for now I guess ill have to be ok with 15 rounds of .22lr

  12. #11
    VIP Member Array Superhouse 15's Avatar
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    If you're used to the 21, why not the Tomcat? The .32 is a step down, but it works great in that platform. hot .380s are maxing out the capabilities of the tiny guns, the .32 will cruise right along forever. You can use your 21 as a training gun for practice. The benefit is it will be easy to learn the unique operation that the tip-up Berettas require. I have a 21 set up with a fat set of wood grips that mimics my Tomcat exactly, I built up an acrylic front sight on it to match the XS of the .32 and it makes a great set.
    Try not to screw up so bad they name the screw up after you. (Station 15 saying)

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  13. #12
    VIP Member Array OldVet's Avatar
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    While a .22 can do a lot of damage, the effect may not be immediate enough for SD. Yes, it dropped R. Kennedy like a rock (headshot) but Reagan walked into the emergency room after being shot with one (and nearly died).

    I'd cast a vote toward the Bersa .380 line. They have several models from which to choose.
    Retired USAF E-8. Curmudgeon at large.
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    Paranoia strikes deep, into your life it will creep. It starts when you're always afraid... Buffalo Springfield - For What It's Worth

  14. #13
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    Senior Member Array cmb's Avatar
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    The Sig 238 has manual safety, decen weight, much thinner the a bobcats grip and is in 380, they run right aroun your 600$ and would fit you pocket. JD just bought one, not sure if he has reviewed it yet on here, and other have them, they are slick and Sig has a good reputation!

  15. #14
    VIP Member Array jwhite75's Avatar
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    Ruger LCP, Kel-tec PF-9, P-11, Kahr PM9, NAA Guardians. There is plenty of pocket options out there under 600 that will serve you well. I do think if you have the option you should step up to 9mm vs. .380. The power is a definite difference and they are the same pretty much in size of gun. Plus .380 is more difficult and expensive to find.
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  16. #15
    VIP Member Array jbum's Avatar
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    P11 is my pocket carry in the summertime

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