Backup gun choices, Revolver or Pocket Auto?

Backup gun choices, Revolver or Pocket Auto?

This is a discussion on Backup gun choices, Revolver or Pocket Auto? within the Defensive Carry Guns forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; OK, so I've been thinking a lot recently about having a backup handgun (most likely carried on the ankle). I'm contemplating buying a compact 38 ...

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Thread: Backup gun choices, Revolver or Pocket Auto?

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    Backup gun choices, Revolver or Pocket Auto?

    OK, so I've been thinking a lot recently about having a backup handgun (most likely carried on the ankle). I'm contemplating buying a compact 38 spc. revolver for the task, and I'd like to hear your thoughts.

    I do own a Taurus TCP, which for me has been 100% reliable after its trip to Taurus, I do trust it quite a bit. But I don't think I'll ever trust any of the little .380 pocket pistols, or even the 9mm's as much as a larger handgun (say Glock, XD, M&P). Maybe this is unjustified.

    Not considering weight or added bulk between .380/9mm autos (LCP, LC9, Solo, TCP, P3AT, etc) and a compact 5 shot .38 what are the pros and the cons or each? The reason I'm not considering weight or bulk between the two is because each is small and light enough for the methods of carry I will be using.

    Thanks in advance!

    -Clay


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    Array Mike1956's Avatar
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    My BUG is usually a Glock 19, occasionally a Kahr PM9. I never pocket, or ankle carry. Preferences and practicalities vary from person to person, depending on circumstances.

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    Senior Member Array WC145's Avatar
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    I carry a small revolver as a BUG when I'm on duty. I consider it more of a "get off me gun" than an alternate to my duty gun. Because of that I want the gun that is most likely to work when shoved into someone's ribs and not have to worry about issues like it going out of battery, limp wristing, mags falling out or failing, FTFs and FTEs, etc.
    “Never give in. Never give in. Never, never, never, never—in nothing, great or small, large or petty—never give in, except to convictions of honour and good sense. Never yield to force. Never yield to the apparently overwhelming might of the enemy.”

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    Distinguished Member Array RevolvingMag's Avatar
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    I would have to recommend a wheelgun.

    Never go out of battery. Never 'limp-wrist' a mag and have it fall out. Also, I've heard bad things about those pocket pistols; mostly about those small springs giving way after x number of rounds- typically a small number because the spring is so small and 'light'.

    The wheelgun hold fewer rounds, but... you KNOW it will go bang when you squeeze the trigger. You round count will be lower but that won't matter as much since that gun is simply to get space, or as a last ditch attempt to get away.

    And, for what it's worth, I almost always carry a .357mag; my .45 is a double-stack and hard to conceal.
    Secret Spuk likes this.
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    VIP Member Array zonker1986's Avatar
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    used to carry and XD SC 9 in a Fobus ankle holster (what was I thinking?). Now I carry a Keltec P-11 in an Apached Ankle Rig. P-11 holds 10+1 of 9mm, and the ones I have had and now have have
    never failed to go bang. At 14 oz unloaded, its IMO, the perfect ankle gun. Notice how much smaller it is than the Glock 26 9mm with the same capacity. (G26 pictured has the 12 round mag with extension).



    ....guess I should mention: I can't stand a five shot snubby, rather I should say I suck with a wheel gun in my hand. Give me any semi-auto, and I can get it to work and can hit what I am aiming at. Not so with a little snub.
    Last edited by zonker1986; October 20th, 2011 at 12:27 AM.
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    I'm going to say the wheel gun for some of the same reasons mentioned above. The wheel gun has very few working parts to mess up. It should go bang every time. If you carry a pocket auto or even a small Glock or M&P or XD you run into the same possible issues of mag popping out, jamming, etc like WC145 said. The reason you will most likely need a BUG is because your main gun is: Broken, Jammed, empty (quicker to go for the NY reload sometimes), you failed to load properly (dropped mag, failure to seat mag correctly), CQC situation. If you carry another auto as your back up, even though it may be the little bro to the main gun, you run into the same issues you were having with the big one. With a pocket gun, its all the same problems only they are on a much smaller platform. Which in turn makes them much bigger problems.

    on the other hand

    No one said you couldn't throw a snub on your ankle and a LCP or the like in your pocket. Not contradicting what I said above but if its that bad and death is imminent anything is worth a shot. No pun intended. Hope this helps. That info was relayed to me by my firearms instructors who are some of the best and most knowledgeable people I have ever trained with.

    Jason
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    Distinguished Member Array RevolvingMag's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AllAbtSlfDef View Post
    I'm going to say the wheel gun for some of the same reasons mentioned above. The wheel gun has very few working parts to mess up. It should go bang every time. If you carry a pocket auto or even a small Glock or M&P or XD you run into the same possible issues of mag popping out, jamming, etc like WC145 said. The reason you will most likely need a BUG is because your main gun is: Broken, Jammed, empty (quicker to go for the NY reload sometimes), you failed to load properly (dropped mag, failure to seat mag correctly), CQC situation. If you carry another auto as your back up, even though it may be the little bro to the main gun, you run into the same issues you were having with the big one. With a pocket gun, its all the same problems only they are on a much smaller platform. Which in turn makes them much bigger problems.

    on the other hand

    No one said you couldn't throw a snub on your ankle and a LCP or the like in your pocket. Not contradicting what I said above but if its that bad and death is imminent anything is worth a shot. No pun intended. Hope this helps. That info was relayed to me by my firearms instructors who are some of the best and most knowledgeable people I have ever trained with.

    Jason
    Good points. Also, I would have to recommend the snubbie because it makes a great club when you run it dry; the .380s, and pocket 9s, just don't have the weight behind them to smack someone with properly.
    "Rock and load, lock and roll... what's it matter? FIRE!!"

    "Gun control means hitting your target every time."

    Please take everything I say with at least one grain of salt- I am a very sarcastic person with a very dry sense of humor.

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    VIP Member Array JoJoGunn's Avatar
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    I recently bought my wife a Ruger LCR in .357 Magnum.

    It was an excellent choice for a primary or a back up.

    I highly recommend getting one. They have the sweetest trigger pull of any relover I have ever fired.
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    VIP Member Array pogo2's Avatar
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    S&W 642 airweight snubby

    I like the S&W 642 airweight revolver for a backup gun. It is lightweight and easy to conceal, and it never fails to fire when I pull the trigger.

    oneshot and gottabkiddin like this.
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    I think the revolver is going to be a good option. I'm leaning toward the S&W 637.

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    Senior Member Array BRTCP88's Avatar
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    I would go for the revolver. They are far less prone to problems (Don't get me wrong, I plan on carrying an auto as my primary, but a BUG is your "in case of emergency break glass" option) you can stick it in someone's gut and fire if they get the jump on you and I'm less concerned about capacity and fast reloads in a secondary weapon.

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    VIP Member Array old grunt's Avatar
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    Own a Ruger SP101,which would act as my BUG,even though it's a little on the heavy side compared to the LCR and Airweight J-Frame Smiths. Firm believer in "Five For Sure", not a big fan of micro-autos. The smallest auto I own or would is my Glock 26. Hope this helped. Look into a pre-lock Smith Airweight or the new Model 42(it has NO lock)or one of the new LCR's if weight is a big consideration. Good Luck!
    "We deal in lead friend">Steve McQueen The Magnificent Seven
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    eb
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    I've been extremely pleased with my Ruger LCR in .38 special. Its very light, but the grip sucks up most of the recoil. I don't carry it often as I like to have more than 5 shots typically, but it would certainly make a very good BUG.

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    Senior Member Array Haywood's Avatar
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    MY back up is a Ruger LCR 357 or a S&W 442.

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    Either will work for the job. One thing you might want to look at, does the maker of your EDC make a subcompact that will handle the same magazines. That could give you extra versatility. JMO, not a big fan of ankle carry. If you have to get to it, everyone will know what your doing, there is no discreet way, that I know of, to go for a ankle carried gun.
    Secret Spuk likes this.
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