Looking for a small, but "shootable" gun - Page 3

Looking for a small, but "shootable" gun

This is a discussion on Looking for a small, but "shootable" gun within the Defensive Carry Guns forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; My Kahr CT380 is great!!! Reasonable price, very concealable, easy to shoot, easy to maintain. Great investment for me!!!...

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Thread: Looking for a small, but "shootable" gun

  1. #31
    Member Array GPNP's Avatar
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    My Kahr CT380 is great!!! Reasonable price, very concealable, easy to shoot, easy to maintain. Great investment for me!!!
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    A .380 in your pocket is better than a .45 at home.

  2. #32
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    Shootable Small Handguns

    Quote Originally Posted by Talldog View Post
    I have a need for the absolutely most concealable gun that I can carry, in a caliber that can get the job done. Something even smaller than my G42. My problem is that I have arthritis in my hands, and it is severe enough that I can't even shoot my G26 any more without a pinky extension on the mag. I'm thinking that .380 is probably as small as I should go, but it has to be shootable, e.g. not something like a KelTec P3AT. I've known a couple of folks who owned those and told me they were painful to shoot. I'm thinking about the Kahr P380, and I'm wondering if anyone has any experience with that pistol. Or if anyone has any other ideas. Again, it has to be really small, but it has to be shootable for someone with physical limitations. I might also consider a .32ACP, but I already know that a 9mm in the size I'm looking for would be unfeasible.
    I have tried most of the available .380 ACP pistols. The G42 is one of the easiest to shoot for me. BUT, as you are wanting smaller than that, here are some of my opinions based upon my experience shooting and carrying .380s, with some consideration for arthritic hands.

    Beretta Pico - Great sights (for small pistol), accurate, well made, difficult to rack for me due to narrow slide and small serrated area. Longer grip than some other small pistols makes it somewhat easier to shoot. One of the most narrow pistols made.
    Kahr CW380/P380 - tight tolerances require break-in, recommended by manufacture. I have had several and always follow a routine of feed ramp polishing, slide racking a minimum of 400 times, and shooting 400 rounds for break-in. Some will find this pistol difficult to rack, due to slide spring, but this does help in recoil reduction. I like the standard sights of the dot/bar, but some will not. Magazines receive a lot of hate mail due to tendency to lose the top round if carried in pocket. The metal used in the magazines have always reminded me of something you would find in a "Saturday Night Special", but I haven't had issues with them, just the "looks" bother me. Mine have all been accurate and I haven't experienced the malfunctions that some report of jamming, failure to feed, etc., but I do prep the pistol.
    Kahr CT380 - What was said about the CW380 can be said for the CT380, with the caveat that the CT380's longer grip makes it easier to shoot and more difficult to conceal. @Talldog , for your condition of the arthritic pinky finger, this just might be the ticket!
    Ruger LCP I - Another pistol I have owned several of, starting with their first released ones, which had to be returned to Ruger for a modification. Anyway, the LCP I has a double action only very stiff trigger pull, essentially non-existent sights, a barrel that will rust if exposed to sweat, salt water, etc., the slide doesn't lock back on the last shot fired, and is one of the smallest pistols one could carry. Mine have been very reliable for about 150 shots, then needed cleaned or they would jam. I have one of the "Custom" models, too, which actually has a decent trigger pull and better sights. With the LCP II available, I can't recommend the original model to anyone unless they are totally spooked by the striker fired action of the LCP II and the light trigger pull.
    Ruger LCP II - Could have been named something different than LCP since to me it is a totally different pistol. Striker fired, safe trigger, wider, better sights, slide lock after last shot, and only slightly larger than the LCP I It is, for me, much easier to shoot than the LCP I. One of my often carried pistols when I need something very small, carried in my front pocket.
    Sig P238 - I have one of the "pretty" ones, engraved with fancy grips and night sights, but that is cosmetics on what is a very well made pistol. Easy to rack. Trigger pull could be better, as I find it heavy for a single action pistol. Accuracy is adequate, but what do you need for a little .380? Very good pistol, but it is somewhat pricey.
    Kimber Micro .380 - I have had one of these since they first came out, before Kimber started making some many different models of this pistol. Mine is the basic stainless model with rosewood grips. Of all of my .380s, this is my most accurate one to shoot (for me). If there is a downside for me with this pistol, it is Kimber's recommendations of changing out the recoil springs after a relatively low round count of 1,000 rounds, less if you use +P. The springs are cheap, so this really isn't an issue, just my gripe.
    Taurus 738 - I have had a couple of these and found them easier to shoot than the Ruger LCP I. Slide locked back after last found fired. Better sights than the LCP I. No longer made, the last ones being offered new could sometimes be found for as little as $130, NIB!.
    Sig P290 RS - Small, but not as small as some others. Long trigger pull. Mine had Sig night sights, which were very good. These came in two different configurations, one with re-strike capability and one not. The "R" in the model numbers were the ones with re-strike capability. Good quality. Mine was very accurate. With the wider grip and larger size, the felt recoil is low. I gifted mine to one of my sons and he likes it very much. No longer available new. IMHO, this pistol's size excludes it from consideration, but I thought I would add it anyway, as you might come across one and like it.
    Remington RM380 - Most know that this is a copy, with a couple of modifications, of the Kevin Rohrbaugh designed double action only trigger pull, hammer fired pistol. All metal, stainless slide and aluminum frame, it is slightly heavier than most of the other small .380 pistols. I put this into the same class as the Sig P290RS, slightly larger than the others, but easy to shoot. It is not as tall as the G42, and just a little wider. For me, accuracy was okay, not stellar. At one time there were some good deals on these with heavy discounts and manufacture's rebates, making it a good buy.

  3. #33
    Member Array Big Western's Avatar
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    Might have already been said, but the smaller the pistol the less shootable they become. And 380 felt recoil isn't much different than 9mm. If minimal size of pistol is paramount, a Beretta TomCat in .32 auto might be the way to go. Keep in mind, Beretta specifically warns against using any .32 ammo over 130 ft lbs of energy, and many modern 32 loads exceed that.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Beretta_3032_Tomcat
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  5. #34
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    I love my LCPII. Good clean trigger break, ok sights, shoots well, reliable, very small and light. The relatively light trigger pull makes a Kydex pocket holster a must.
    Some say it is "snappy," but it IS a small polymer .380. I don't find the recoil bothersome at all.
    The difference in weight of 10 oz. for the LCPII vs. the 12.5 -- 15 oz. weight of most other .380s is HUGE in my pocket -- just my opinion. 15 oz. in my pocket feels like I'm carrying a brick.
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  6. #35
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    If it hurts but you can still shot then maybe a centerfire handgun with a comparable 22 RF practice gun. I am thinking specifically the Ruger LCR in 38 special and 22 RF version. Make sure initially the LCR in 38 special is reliable even if you have to have someone else test it. Then fire LCR 38 special very infrequently doing your practice with 22RF version. Once you have assured LCR in 38 special is reliable can be pretty sure it will stay reliable with any quality ammo. LCR is maybe not the smallest package but its shape conceals well for most people and double action is generally good out of the box.

  7. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by Big Western
    Might have already been said, but the smaller the pistol the less shootable they become. And 380 felt recoil isn't much different than 9mm. If minimal size of pistol is paramount, a Beretta TomCat in .32 auto might be the way to go.
    I haven't ruled out .32ACP, but I'd like to stay with .380 if I can. I'll be shooting a P380 on Monday.

  8. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by Talldog View Post
    I haven't ruled out .32ACP, but I'd like to stay with .380 if I can. I'll be shooting a P380 on Monday.
    I have a G42 and 2 P238's. I prefer to carry the SIG's because they are so much easier to rack the slides and really soft and accurate shooters. HOWEVER: Even though the P238 is measurably smaller than the G42 - the Glock CONCEALS BETTER!!!! I do not know why, but it definitely has a "flatter" profile.

    I carry my guns IWB in Vedder holsters, a bit in front of my hip bone. I shoot left handed due to severe arthritic deterioration in my right hand which was my shooting hand for 20 years.

    I sincerely wish you luck with your search for the right gun for you for your needs and with your limitations!
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  9. #38
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    For me, a J-frame revolver works well in the pocket.
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  10. #39
    Distinguished Member Array drmordo's Avatar
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    I've owned many of the guns posted in this thread, and my concern with many of these recommendation is they will be snappy or it will be difficult to manipulate the slide.

    The only guns I can recommend are:

    SIG P238: easy to rack the slide, light-ish trigger.

    Ruger LCP II: Not too bad to rack the slide, light trigger.

    If they won't work for you, the only thing left is to move down to a 32 ACP - Keltec P32 or Seecamp.

  11. #40
    VIP Member Array 10thmtn's Avatar
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    Maybe carry your G42 in a more concealed manner? Smartcarry?
    Carry a sidearm always. Be able to put shots into the torso and then head, if needed. The rest is much less important.

  12. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by CAS_Shooter View Post
    The Sig P290RS 380 and 9mm are the same height(3.9"), length(5.5"), and width(1.1") as the P238. The P290 is a double action only (DOA) pistol, and for some that is a plus and others it is a minus. I have owned both versions (380 and 9mm), and the P290RS is the softest 380 I have owned, and I have owned quite a few. It is 5 oz heavier than the P238. If cocked and locked is your preference, P238 would work, if heavier trigger with a second strike capability matters the P290RS might work. One benefit of the P290RS is that you can get it in 9mm and it has the same dimensions as the P238, in a DAO platform.

    I had no failure issues with either P290RS that I owned.

    Attachment 305636

    Not too easy to find, but always a variety of new and used on Gunbroker.
    My cousin just purchased a LNIB P290 in 9mm .... Great pistol... I just have had the chance to run around 50rds through the pistol.... I like the trigger .. DAO ..feels similar to a a S&W 642 I once owned that had a great trigger job ...
    Though a small pistol , with 124gr FMJ , very manageable.... BTW .. He got it at a steal at a LGS

    My deep concealment pistol is a Taurus TCP .. Good trigger .. Has been very dependable...
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  13. #42
    Member Array mamaxwell's Avatar
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    I would recommend the RM380 small emough to carry the all steel construction makes it easy to shoot.
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  14. #43
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    LCP2 or Kahr CM9. I've got both for pocket duty. The CM9 actually shoots softer, IMO.
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  15. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by 10thmtn
    Maybe carry your G42 in a more concealed manner? Smartcarry?
    Depending on how my testing works out, this might become an option. Turns out, there's a place I can rent most of the guns I'm interested in, and I'm willing to do that if I need to.

    Quote Originally Posted by mamaxwell
    I would recommend the RM380 small emough to carry the all steel construction makes it easy to shoot.
    I will add this to my list. I will say though, that I'm going to be renting a Kahr P380 on Monday, and if I like that gun, I'm probably going to buy it.

    In any event, I have until spring to figure this out. After years of travelling around New England in our motorhome, my wife and I are now retired and the owners of a brand new diesel pusher, which we will be using to travel much farther from home. Even though my carry permits are good for 30 states, that leaves a lot of places where we wouldn't be legal, and we've been struggling with how to handle this, even considering travelling unarmed. Then, this past week, this story has been all over our airwaves in New Hampshire:

    https://www.foxnews.com/us/texas-dep...ered-rv-stolen

    This has focused our minds, and we both realize that as an older (OK, old) couple travelling alone far from home (in an expensive motorhome, no less), we are at a higher risk of being targeted by predators like the ones who killed this couple. Obviously, I've been around long enough to understand the importance of situational awareness and staying away from bad areas, but I now realize that there's no way I'm going to travel around the country unarmed. It seems likely that I will, on occasion, find myself in locations where I will end up in jail if it is discovered that I'm carrying a gun, or that there's a loaded gun in the motorhome. We're old, with no criminal records, don't go out partying at bars, etc., so we know that as long as we're driving close to the speed limit, we're probably not going to attract official attention, but I want to make sure the odds are as much in my favor as possible. I'm looking for a gun that won't be made by people who who are trained to make them, like cops and criminals. That's what this is all about.

  16. #45
    VIP Member Array hardluk1's Avatar
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    Note that the the P380 is at best a tiny two finger on the grip pistol . The shorter slide will be harder to rack to and at 10oz is lite and its crazy expensive compared to a cm380 thats the same size . If they have a kahr ct380 to handle it see and feel the difference .
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