Advise on a final gun selection....

This is a discussion on Advise on a final gun selection.... within the Defensive Carry Guns forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; Need some help folks. I'm planning my next purchase and I've narrowed it down to one of the two: Kahr MK9 Springfield EMP I'd started ...

View Poll Results: Which 9mm would you recommend for me?

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  • Kahr MK9

    24 36.36%
  • Springfield EMP

    42 63.64%
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Thread: Advise on a final gun selection....

  1. #1
    Distinguished Member Array Gideon's Avatar
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    Advise on a final gun selection....

    Need some help folks. I'm planning my next purchase and I've narrowed it down to one of the two:

    Kahr MK9
    Springfield EMP

    I'd started out looking for a 4" or 3" 1911 in .45acp but I keep coming back to the economy of shooting plus less recoil, etc. So I was looking for something specifically in 9mm, something with a bit of weight to it so i can shoot it more and more effectively, and I need it to be a small pistol with a short but becasue I'm only 5'7" and 160lbs and have a hard time with handgun butts poking out in back. I plan on carrying IWB with at least a 20 degree cant.

    The Kahr is $650 at my gun store (without any negotiating) and the EMP is almost double that.

    I love the feel, size and weight of the MK9 although I've never shot one. I won't use it for pocket carry as I have an S&W 642 or Kel-tec P3AT for that.

    What I like about the EMP is the fact that it's a 1911 format ( I just like those!) and it packs 10 rounds and since it's single action, I think I would be able to shoot it well, even on double taps. However, the cost and availability are a killer!

    Now I already have a Kahr P9 that runs perfect and I should be happy with that but It's snappy (due to light weight). So I don't have to buy this. I really wanted a micro compact 1911 in .45 acp but I know I won't shoot that anywhere near as good as the 9. So between these two for a thin guy with smaller hands, which would you recommend?

    Also, would you trade the P9 for either if it was you? It seems silly to get the MK9 for IWB if I have a P9 but the MK9 would conceal just a bit better and i think the extra weight would make it nice to shoot. My hands are small enough to tuck my third finger around the bottom of the grip. On the other hand the EMP should be a breeze to shoot, including double taps due to it being SA and I like the idea of 10 rounds in such a small package! I'm so torn!

    So what do you think?

    Thanks and God Bless
    Gideon

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  3. #2
    Member Array tellico's Avatar
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    voted emp because I am one of those few people who have had terrible luck with a Kahr gun actually functioning properly. I know I'm biased based on 1-2 guns, but its enough that I would rather trust my life to some other brand. I also like the idea of the EMP and am looking at maybe buying one myself if I can hold it in my hand and scratch the money together.

  4. #3
    VIP Member Array friesepferd's Avatar
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    i have shot two similar guns to what you listed (kahr cw9 and kimber aegis) and although i am bias cuz i own the kimber, i started out on the kahr and i like my kimber WAY more. maybe its just me, but theres something about single action

  5. #4
    VIP Member Array pogo2's Avatar
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    I chose Kahr MK9

    Of the two guns I picked the Kahr MK9. I've had one for about 6 months and was just shooting it again yesterday. I like it very much, and got mine for $500 slightly used.

    It is true that the EMP has a 9 round magazine while the MK9 comes with both a 6 round (flush fitting) magazine and a 7 round (sticks out slightly) magazine, so you have more capacity with the EMP. But balancing this is the longer grip of the EMP, which makes it harder to conceal than the MK9. You have to make a personal tradeoff here of concealability vs. capacity, as is often the case with CCW handguns.

    Both guns are equally thin, with a slide width of 0.90 inches and a grip width of an inch or so. I believe they also weigh about the same (23-24 ounces empty), although the Kahr has a steel frame while the EMP has an aluminum frame. But the Kahr has an edge in simplicity of the trigger/safety used, with a long DAO trigger and no external safety. The EMP uses the cocked and locked 1911 format, and has a beavertail and external hammer sticking out in the back.

    So personally I prefer the Kahr MK9 for a very small 9mm CCW with short grip. If I want to use a mini 1911, I prefer my Colt Defender in .45 caliber, which isn't very much bigger than the EMP but only cost me $700 slightly used.

    Here is a picture of the two guns together:


  6. #5
    Senior Member Array coffeecup's Avatar
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    Go with the Springer. It costs more for a reason, and you get exactly what you pay for.

  7. #6
    VIP Member Array ELCruisr's Avatar
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    I'd rent or borrow both, shoot them and find out which one works best and shoots best for YOU. None of us can replace that.
    If you stand up and be counted, from time to time you may get yourself knocked down. But remember this: A man flattened by an opponent can get up again. A man flattened by conformity stays down for good. ~ Thomas J. Watson, Jr.

  8. #7
    Senior Member Array SilenceDoGood's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ELCruisr View Post
    I'd rent or borrow both, shoot them and find out which one works best and shoots best for YOU. None of us can replace that.
    +1 nothing replaces range time with the gun. Letting us make your final pick is sort of like internet dating, you acutally have to take the girl out before you can get serious.
    "A government is like fire, a handy servant, but a dangerous master." -- George Washington

  9. #8
    Distinguished Member Array Gideon's Avatar
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    good advise, however, where I live in Missour I'm at least several hours from the nearest range that rents guns and I'm assuming that there's one in St. Louis Missouri. I do know the EMP will have a better "purchase" on the weapon and I'd expect slightly less felt recoil and I do know that single action would help me shoot better than the DAO of the Kahr although my experience with Kahr triggers is very good. So I know the EMP would be a better shooter overall and probably more fun at the range, however, I think the MK9 would be a lot easier to conceal and could even be thrown in a coat pocket. So I'm still torn and I appreciate the feedback! The price delta between the two is huge and that is a consideration. I'd be more tempted to trade in my Kahr P9 against the EMP than I would to trade it in against the MK9, not sure why, just my gut feeling. I hate trading weapons because you never get a great price but it does help and I hate to have a gun lying around that I won't really use and if I had the EMP, then I can't imagine why I'd ever use the Kahr.

    Final point worth noting was what one person already mentioned and that's the simpler manual of arms with the Kahrs. They're similar to my KelTec P3AT and my revolvers. So If I just get the MK9 then all of my shooting is the same, simple DAO with no safetys of any kind. Something to be said for that, right?

    Anyway, thanks again for all the feedback and if anyone knows of a range in Missouri near Cape Girardeau Missour that rents, let me know!

    God Bless
    Gideon

  10. #9
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    +1 on maintaining the same manual of arms. I am greatly intrigued by the EMP as a small 9mm, but I am WAY more familiar with the DA/SA and DAO platforms, and I am required to carry weapons of that sort while on duty. Therefore, I won't get the EMP (for carry, anyway) because it is significantly different in operation from what I am used to. Since you are already familiar with the Kahr and have had good experiences with them, I suggest you stick with the Kahr in this case. Maybe not as sexy as the EMP, and probably not as good as a range gun, but it seems to fit your purposes and experiences better.
    A man fires a rifle for many years, and he goes to war. And afterward he turns the rifle in at the armory, and he believes he's finished with the rifle. But no matter what else he might do with his hands - love a woman, build a house, change his son's diaper - his hands remember the rifle.

  11. #10
    Senior Member Array SilenceDoGood's Avatar
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    try PHEGLEY'S SHOOTERS SUPPLY--Address: 2502 WILLIAMS ST#1 CAPE GIRARDEAU, MO 63701 Voice: 1-314-335-1007 or Address: 779 ENTERPRISE CAPE GIRAREDEAU, MO 63701 Voice: 1-314-335-1007 had it in there twice for some reason?? give them a call and see if they rent. I think they have range there.
    "A government is like fire, a handy servant, but a dangerous master." -- George Washington

  12. #11
    Member Array rathos's Avatar
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    I own a kahr mk9 and I love it. The only downside to it is pocket carry, it doesn't present as well as my 442, but since you aren't going to be doing pocket carry I would recommend that over the emp. I have found that carrying the MK9 inside the waistband is comfortable strongside or cross draw. It is also very accurate, I can hit pop cans at 50 yards no problem, and I hold 1 inch groups at 10 yards pretty easy, even off hand and one handed. While I do love the 1911 platform I think the mk9 would be more comfortable to carry daily and easier to conceal.
    ‘‘To disarm the people is the best and most effectual way to enslave them.’’

    — George Mason

  13. #12
    Distinguished Member Array Gideon's Avatar
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    Good inputs! Opfor makes a good point that the EMP is sexy! It's beautiful and would be a dream gun at the range but the practical aspects of the MK9 makes a lot of sense. As for sexy, one of the other posters included his picture of his MK9 with wood grips and that sure looked nice!

    It would be great to have both but I'd feel too guily doing that!

    Earlier today i was leaning towards the EMP but the last few posts makes some good practical points and I do believe the MK9 would be a good deal easier to conceal than the EMP and I could use the savings to get my SP101 over to Gemini for some work

    Anyway, I do appreciate the thoughts guys! Maybe I'll get the MK9 and then eventually get myself an officer's size 1911 in .45.

    Well, God Bless and thanks again for all the inputs!
    Gideon

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