This is a discussion on Decisions Decisions within the Defensive Carry Guns forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; Well, I posted a while ago about an impending purchase and went with a full-size S&W M&P9. I really think this firearm is a winner ...
April 28th, 2007 01:35 AM
Well, I posted a while ago about an impending purchase and went with a full-size S&W M&P9. I really think this firearm is a winner - no problems whatsoever so far - very accurate and reliable to this point. My biggest problem was not looking at the compact model instead of the full-size version. Even though I could probably trade mine for a compact, I don't want to let it go - especially since it's most definitely a keeper. I don't want to get into the habit of trading off guns - have done that for years with golf clubs and you can really take a bath financially doing so.
I've actually saved up some "mad money" for additional purchases (someone mentioned when I came on here I wouldn't stop with one, they were right!) so I went to a gun shop/sporting store locally during a slow period of the day and spent over two hours going through their vast selection with a well-informed employee. We basically went through every gun case and even talked about ammo selection choices and carry-related topics. Fun day, had a ball - but of course came out just as puzzled on what I was going to purchase. Here's at the top of my selection so far. I'm probably going to take two (can't just buy one for some reason!) and have a little over $1K
S&W 638 or 642 - $370
Taurus 851 CIA - $320
Kahr CW-9 - $380
Kel-Tec P11 - $250
Para PXT LTC Alloy - $600
S&W 457/457S - $500
HK USP40 Compact (lightly used at what I think is a good price - $500)
I'm wanting both of them for CCW, but know some will be easier than others. Of couse I want reliability and good concealment options, with pocket and IWB as the preferred method.
One question for P9/CW9 owners as well as P11's, is it possible to pocket carry these? Not referring to tighter jeans, but cargo style pants/shorts and those with deeper pockets.
I know I sound like a little kid boning up for a trip to a candy store, but honestly don't care if I come across that way or not - I've read and heard too many on here act the same way LOL.
Your thoughts on my impending purchase(s) are appreciated - I know there is more wisdom here than I'll ever have!
Last edited by Slabtown; April 28th, 2007 at 01:45 AM.
April 28th, 2007 09:02 AM
You can't go wrong with a Smith 638 or 642. I've got a 638, and like the fact that I can take a single action shot, if need be, while maintaining a "snag-free" profile for pocket carry. Plus, I think the 638 (knowns as the "bodyguard") just looks cool. I'd pay the extra $50 or so for a Smith over a Taurus. S&W service is great, and you're less like to need it. Taurus quality is hit and miss, at least from my experience. YMMV.
Kahr's can be a little finicky. If you find one that feeds whatever you put through it, they can't be beat. The triggers are a REALLY smooth double action.
Kel-Tec P11 is a great gun for the money. I'd go with standard pressure 9mm loads, but I think you're ok to shoot +P every once in a while. They sure are light. Early production ones had a few bugs, but from what I hear, the latest ones are really good. I have a friend who owns one, he loves his.
The S&W 457 is probably the most underrated CCW .45 on the market. I used to own one, and put many rounds downrange with no hiccups. Nice and flat, reliable, concealable. I prefer .40's for CCW, though, and sold it not too long ago to finance the purchase of a S&W Mountain Gun .44 magnum. I've never owned a .44 magnum, and it's time to scratch that itch! Besides, I've got an excuse....going hiking in Colorado this summer. A .44 magnum on the hip is very comforting, for those cases where the bear pepper spray might not work!
Don't know if you've ever used GunBroker or not, but check the prices on 457's. $500 is a bit salty, I think you can do better, especially if you don't mind a blued one, or a little holster wear.
Never owned a Para or HK, but their reputations are outstanding.
Slow is smooth.....smooth is fast.
April 28th, 2007 12:09 PM
I just ordered a J-frame revolver (the M&P 340) this week and would highly recommend purchasing a 642/638 as the recoil in these revolvers is not bad at all, even with +P ammo. It beat out the Kahr MK9/PM9 option that I was also considering.
April 28th, 2007 12:21 PM
On the Kel-Tec P11 try one before buying. It is a good pistol if you can put up with the trigger. My wife and I couldn't. From my perspective and quite a few others the trigger is the worst of any modern semi-auto in existence.
Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity; and I'm not sure about the universe. Albert Einstein
April 28th, 2007 12:36 PM
I would prolly buy the "compact" M&P to compliment the full sized one. By the way, I'm glad you bought the full size. A lot of guys go for the compact because it hides better...well...that part may be true, but as for me? I want a HANDFULL fo gun when the chips are down!
But that is another topic! Back on track!
As far as a BUG, the S&W 642 leaps out at me over all the rest on the list. But...have you considered OTHER EDC gear? Such as a good quality holster, mag pouch, folding knife and a flashlight? I know, I know...you are saying "Why would I need all of that?" Trust me. You have decided to take on the HUGE RESPONSIBILITY of carrying a LOADED, LETHAL FIREARM ON YOUR KIESTER! Carrying an extra mag, a folder and a FLASHLIGHT are not as big of a burden as you may think. I could talk about EDC gear and the importance of EACH AND EVERY ITEM but I won't hog the post! If you really wanna know what I THINK (YMMV) is the best EDC gear - send me a PM!
April 28th, 2007 12:45 PM
Glad to hear that you like your M&P9. I'm getting ready to purchase one and like to hear good reports.
I agree that you can't go wrong with the 642. I carry one daily and really like it.
Don't hit at all if it is honorably possible to avoid hitting; but never hit soft!
-- Theodore Roosevelt --
April 29th, 2007 09:01 AM
I have a Taurus 851 and it is a great little wheelgun. It is very heavy(they make a lightweight,but I have the regular) , but fits my hand great and its weight helps alot with the recoil. I would however suggest a S&W wheelie over a Taurus, only b/c of resale value. You can find a 851 at buds cheaper than $320,...Like $290 shipped to your FFL.
April 29th, 2007 09:23 AM
Pocket carry really limits the size of what you can stuff in there. Me, I've purchased pants with the specific goal of concealed carry in the pockets, hence the pockets themselves are designed to accommodate them (sort of a mini-cargo style). Consider: snubbie revolvers, the KelTec or Kahr lines, or possibly the Taurus Millennium Pro.
Originally Posted by Slabtown
For IWB, you have far more options. The CZ 2075 RAMI is a good performer. The Taurus Millennium Pro series is nice. I've handled a few, but not yet shot them. Springfield, Kimber and others make 1911-style pistols in 9mm and .40cal. Kahr makes a number of pistols that will conceal and carry well IWB (CW9, P9, and the .40cal variants).
Definitely don't underrate a good revolver. IWB, you can conceal a good-sized one. I had a S&W 442 for years. Friends have had the Ruger SP101 .357 in snubbie and 3" bbl. With the right holster/belt you can even go larger. And, the reliabilty of revolvers is hard to equal, in semi-auto's.
I purchased a CZ P01 9mm mid-sized auto. Technically, CZ calls it a compact, but it's at the upper limit (for me) of what conceals well. Other than being a tad wide to carry IWB, it is highly reliable, relatively easy to conceal, light at 28oz, forged alum frame with steel slide, points naturally and fits very well in the hand. To my way of thinking, it's nearly perfect. I'd take 100% reliability over a handful of other features any day of the week, since my life may depend on that sucker working perfectly, if attacked.
April 29th, 2007 09:31 AM
I normally carry a full size Springfield 1911-A1, but Summer is coming and I was considering the Kel-Tec P11 or PF-9 (the PF-9 hasn't showed up on the local marked here in Wichita yet), when I saw a used Kahr CW-9 in the display case at one of the local indoor range/gunshops. It had only 20 rounds through it, and the price was right at $345.00. Having heard many good things about the Kahr guns, I didn't even hesitate, and having the cash in my pocket I ticked off a couple of guys that were enroute to an ATM to get the requisite amount of green to grab it.
I immediately bought a box of el-cheapo MagTech 9mm 115 gr. FMJ's and a box of the cheaper Winchester white box 115 gr. JHP's. Took it into the range and fired for function/accuracy. I was VERY PLEASANTLY surprised! All 100 rounds fed properly, went BANG when the trigger was pulled (5.5 pound pull but LOOOONG throw), ejected properly, and stayed in the center of mass on a full size silouette target at 15 yards. (All except for the first round, which was all it took for me to get used to the trigger. Being left handed, round #1 was pushed low and right -- Kidney shot on the silouette.)
I have since put over 500 rounds through the gun with not a hiccup. That includes some handloads using the Hornady 115 gr XTP hollow point. They all shoot to the same point of aim and the function has been flawless. Absolutely NO FTF/FTE.
The gun came with only one 7 round magazine, but I bought a couple of ProMag 8 round after-market mags from Midway. These also feed perfectly, so the little 15.8 ounce (unloaded) Kahr CW-9 has since become my primary carry gun at least for the summer. It's small enough and light enough I don't even notice it. I carry it in a Don Hume IWB that I bought off the KahrShop website. A floppy T-shirt covers it just fine and no printing at all. Draw is reasonably fast, and with the long trigger pull, the gun is safe even in condition 1 which is how I ALWAYS carry it.
Certified NRA Pistol instructor, Range Safety Officer Kansas Concealed Carry instructor and NRA Life member.
Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscripti catapultas habebunt.
(When catapults are outlawed, only outlaws will have catapults!)
April 29th, 2007 10:30 AM
well me i am kinda biased for what i carry so i will vote HK USP C 40 and an M&P c 40... cant go wrong with either, and since you are getting two why not get two that wont steer you wrong
Calling an illegal alien an 'undocumented immigrant' is like calling a drug dealer an 'unlicensed pharmacist'
De inimico non Loquaris sed cogites.
Do not wish ill for your enemy, plan for it!
April 29th, 2007 07:57 PM
Though the S&W 642 may be an 'Airweight' revolver the recoil is very manageable. Typical field loads are very accurate as far out as 7-10 yds. It is capable of +P loads that were also surprising manageable. When it is not feasible to carry my Kimber Pro CDP, I throw the 642 into a Nemesis pocket holster and it just disappears. Be prepared to practice ALOT of dry firing to get accustomed to the double action, I'm not sure if all are shrouded hammers, but mine is shrouded. After much dry fire practice the action seems to have gotten much smoother. I added a pair of Hogue grips so my pinky had something to hang onto. This offered better control but it does add a little more length to the weapon. I just wear deeper pocketed jeans and khaki shorts. I will be adding Cimson Trace grips soon. This little J-frame is definitely a keeper!
Glock 34 9mm
Glock 36 .45acp
S&W 642-2 .38 +P
Ruger Mark ii 22/45
April 29th, 2007 09:17 PM
That IS a great price on the USPc. I'd go for it. I'm not biased or anything
A witty saying proves nothing.
April 29th, 2007 10:21 PM
If already have one full size or mid-size firearm I would look at getting something smaller to carry.
Of everything on the list the 642 jumps out at me. In fact I carry a 442 as my BUG. My Kahr PM9 is a BUG if I have to have the 442 as my Primary or my third gun.
While Revolvers are thicker than an autoloader they are easier to draw from the pocket if that's how you carry it. In fact, with Pocket Carry you can have your hand on your weapon, and nobody the wiser.
When I'm walking around, if you see me with my hand in my pocket rest assured, I have my hand on a gun.
April 30th, 2007 12:10 AM
USPc in 40 has my vote. I am carrying one IWB already. With a C-Tac holster I am golden.
April 30th, 2007 09:27 AM
A small .38 snubby was for sure going to be one of the two that I purchase - that had never been a question. Since I had purchased the M&P & been very satisfied with it, I am leaning very heavily towards either the 638 or 642. I also thought the price on the 457 was a little on the high side. Not sure what their thinking on that particular gun happened to be, as they had other S&W semi-autos of better quality (not in the value end side) marked for basically the same price.
I measured the Kel-Tec P11 to the Kahr CW-9 and for the most part, they are the same size. The CW-9 might be just a fraction larger, but not enough to make a difference IMHO. The Kahr is still in the mix, but with the decision to get the 638/642, not sure if I need to consider it.
The HK USP40c is a nice gun, but went back and looked at it and it had a little more wear on it than I first thought. Still, for $500 I thought it was a good price myself.
Another option that I have considered since going to the shop was to look at a Sig P239 to purchase along with the 642. I've always admired the Sig line but never had the funds to seriously look at one. Granted, the P239 I am sure is a little heavier than some other IWB options, but there's no doubt that it's quality and reliable. Plus, the P239 would keep me in the 9mm category with the M&P. Again, just something else to add into the existing confusion ;) As you can tell, I'm just about open to any suggestion(s) and consider all.
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