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So, I am in the market for a carry piece for summer and throw in your pocket and go. I don't want to spend a fortune, but want a reliable piece. I have done my research and have narrowed it down to two guns on opposite sides of the spectrum. First would be a Bulgarian Makarov and the second, a Keltec PF9 or p3at. Obviously, the Keltec with its light weight and slim lines would be easier to pocket carry, but that is not my biggest need. In a self defense situation considering caliber, reliability, etc. which one would you pick up first and why?
 

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A Makarov is pretty heavy for pocket carry. It's intent was to be holstered. The smaller the better, so of those three the .380 is the most appropriate for your use, IMO.
 

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The PF9 is in my pocket right now. I trust my life and my familes in it firing everytime I pull the trigger. 9mm is the lowest caliber I would go. It's also one of the cheapest (when you can find it).
 

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I prefer plastic to pot metal. I've tried the PF9 at the local gun shop...never shot it. Out of the three you listed, I'd go with it if I had to.
 

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I agree with Ram Rod. I have handled both the Kel-Tec's, but have only shot a p3at. If I had to chose I'd pick the pf9.
 

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I bought a PF9 a few weeks ago and love it. Get a good holster and you won't even know you're carrying it. Recoil's a little sharp but you'll get used to it.
 

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I've had the P3AT for over a year. It's in my pocket nearly every day. Have fired over 100 rounds with no problems other than it's not a very comfortable range shooter, but that's not why I carry it.
 

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To my knowledge no Makarov uses "Pot Metal". So its really Metal versus plastic. I like metal, so I vote Makarov. Still if weight is an issue then Keltec is fine.
 

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You need to do some more research. Bulgarian Makarov's, or Russian or East German for that matter are certainly not made with Pot Metal. Thet are very well made all quality steel handguns. Simple (only 27 part), extremely reliable and tough. Maybe you were thinking of Hi Point handguns, now thats pot metal (zinc alloy). You should also consider the CZ82. They are possibly the best value going today in a modern 12 round capacity handgun witha polygonal rifled barrel. Very well made all steel gun and its a CZ! You can get they for around $250 retail, as low as $199 if you have a C&R FFL. makarov 9X18 ammo is relatively cheap and avalible everywhere online.



 

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I have a P-3at and I love it. The gun is reliable. Several hundred rounds through it and the only problems I had was in the first 50 rounds (break in). I have fed to FMJ and hollow-points. I know some people have had problems with Kel-Tecs, but I haven't had any at all. I am planning on buying more Kel-Tec products so we will see how they do.
 

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All of the aforementioned pistols are fine. If weight is a primary consideration, I would suggest that you look into the Kel Tec PF9. This is not a "range" gun, but a "save your ***** in a pinch" pistol! Remember: Sight it in, make certain where the handgun groups with self-defense ammunition, and shoot it periodically with range ammunition periodically to "keep your hand in it".

Conceal it well, make certain that it is available when needed, and "keep your powder dry".

Good shooting,

Scott
 

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Pot metal was actually just a saying they used for Russian war guns. Sorry if it offended anyone:rolleyes:
I've been around guns and gun collectors all of my life, and have never heard anyone with an ounce of knowledge about Russian firearms refer to them as "pot metal." Pot metal is a common slang term to refer to cheap metal with a low melting point. Makarovs in particular are all-steel, tough, reliable guns. Definitely NOT pot metal.

I'd trust a Makarov over any pistol that says "Kel-Tec" on it, simply because of the reputation of durability and reliability. Being a fixed barrel/blowback design only enhances the reliability aspect. That being said, lots of people love their Kel-Tecs, and they do excel as pocket pistols due to their light weight and smaller size. I'd go PF-9 before I'd go with the .380. It's cheaper, and is a more powerful round.
 

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Never shot a Mak but my Kel-Tec P11 has been 100% reliable, I carried it most of this year. I replaced it with a Glock 19 this week. Now that I’m comfortable with carrying all the time, I find I can conceal a full size just as easily as a sub compact.
 

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Pot metal was actually just a saying they used for Russian war guns. Sorry if it offended anyone:rolleyes:
I did not take any offense and I am not trying to offend you either in this case but I been a milsurp collector for 30 years and own 20 or so Russian or Russian designed guns including many Mosin Nagant rifles, SKS's, Takarev, 1895 Nagant and Makarov pistols and I have never heard them called or referred to as pot metal guns. Who is They you refer too? Certainly not milsurp collectors, military historians or shooters. As metro 40 stated above pot metal is a soft low melting point metal and usually in guns its a zinc alloy of some type.
 

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First would be a Bulgarian Makarov and the second, a Keltec PF9 or p3at. Obviously, the Keltec with its light weight and slim lines would be easier to pocket carry, but that is not my biggest need. In a self defense situation considering caliber, reliability, etc. which one would you pick up first and why?
Makarovs are not "pot metal".

Personally, I'd go with a Makarov (though, at this point I am "transitioning" away from Maks, and am down to one). I've never heard of anyone needing to do a "fluff and buff" to get a Mak reliable.
 

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I'd trust a Makarov over any pistol that says "Kel-Tec" on it, simply because of the reputation of durability and reliability.
Makarovs are not "pot metal".

Personally, I'd go with a Makarov (though, at this point I am "transitioning" away from Maks, and am down to one). I've never heard of anyone needing to do a "fluff and buff" to get a Mak reliable.

I forgot to mention this in my earlier post, but I have not had a "fluff and buff" done to my Kel-Tec P-3at. I brought the brand new gun home, took it out of the box. Disassembled, checked the barrel for any obstructions, made sure that nothing appeared to be broken or misaligned, Reassembled, loaded the magazine with full metal jacket and let them fly at my home range. I think that the bad rep for Kel-Tecs are from the earlier models. From what I have heard from other people (at local gun shops and shooting ranges) the current generation of guns are much superior that the older models. I don't want to start a argument :argue: about the quality of Kel-Tecs, but I keep seeing them bashed as junk when my personal experience tells me otherwise.

I clean my guns after every shooting and I take down and clean my P-3at at least once every two week to clean out lint from pocket carry including disassembling the two magazines that I carry (one in gun and a backup.).

I have no personal experience with Maks so I cannot give you any advise that way. I can just say that I love my P-3at and I have never had any problems with it.
 

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The Mak would get my choice as I prefer a heavier gun for recoil control and quick second shot sight alignment. Plus the 9x18 is a lot easier to find right now than most 380acp ammo.

NCH
 
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