I find the 26 to be the perfect size for it's intended purpose. I don't think that the grip is too thick. I held a PPS and it seemed bigger than the 26 to me. Maybe a little thinner, but the overall size of the 26 seems smaller, yet it can shoot like a 19 or 17.
To each his own.
Yeah single column magazines are great, the trim handle feels much better in the hand than a big fat double stack, and 9 rounds is enough I think. Star used to make a cute little 1911 clone in 9mm called the Star BM I think, God it felt great in the hand and it fit flat in a waistband like you wouldn't believe.
I don't buy into the whole idea of guns that are "meant to be carried a lot but only shot a little." If you are going to carry a gun, then IMHO you should train with that gun - as much as possible.
It is not uncommon to see Glocks that are decades old, with tens of thousands of rounds through them. Some parts may have been replaced, like springs, but the frame and major components are usually original. I'm just not sure you can get that level of longevity with a lighter slide riding on a slimmer frame.
Also - the thinner guns have bare metal mags. Glock uses polymer over metal for their mags - the metal reinforces the polymer, while the polymer cushions the metal if the mag gets dropped. Sure, the Glock mags (and the pistol itself) are thus thicker, but the payoff is less probability of malfunction caused by busted up mags. This is one reason why I prefer Glock to similar designs like the XD and M&P - JMHO.
The same goes for the Walther PP/PPK/PPK/S and PK380, Mauser HSc, as well as the Browning and Beretta High Capacity .380's. There are now 9mm's and even .40's that carry as easily as these medium to large-sized .380's (But they do kick harder)!
I can't consider a .380 a mini unless it's at least as small as the current SIG P238.
I don't weigh 90 at 4ft 5 inches like the Asian model in the "Slim is in" Kahr ads. So therefor, I'll take a man sized gun, one that I know can handle shooting whatever load I want indefintely.
I know of many gals that carry large guns everyday with no problem.
Truth be told, I'm not sure I shoot enough to reach the end of useful service life for a Kahr. The design seems to be sound, with more slide to rail contact than a Glock. I don't see any horror stories of them falling apart after a few thousand rounds. I've seen more than one police department have problems with supposedly "reliable" service pistols in actual use, including failures with Glocks well before their 1,000,000,000 round service life, so I know that the most important statistic for me is how MY pistol runs. If I see signs of wear after a few thousand rounds, I can always purchase another pistol. They are not that expensive, and I'm not the type to keep a polymer frame pistol as a keepsake for my great-great-great grandchildren. They are tools, and if one starts to wear out, I get another one. Seems like common sense to me.
I've got a man-sized gun, was born with it, and don't need to compensate for anything. :smile:
Regarding firearms, I also find a Kahr CW45 to be just about the right size for my needs, in an effective caliber, and with sufficient capacity for the generally tame areas that I frequent. American made, a proper grip angle, and a great trigger, to boot. I suppose I could see the need for handgun size overcompensation if I tended to hang out where elephants sneak up behind me, or if I was worried that a woman somewhere had a .44 in her purse, and I was an insecure man who based his "manliness" on something as ridiculous as what kind of gun he carried. I hope to never reach that level of pathetic.