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Old November 17, 2012, 12:34 PM   #1
ang4me
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Wanted: advice on pocket pistols

Hey fellas,
I've been carrying and shooting for a while. I've got several excellent carry weapons, including a 1911, a G19, and a few smaller guns, all of which are too large to pocket-carry. I live/work in an area that is extremely unfriendly to carry, and i want to diversify my stable, so I'm looking at some guns for pocket carry. I am entirely undecided, except that it must be pocketable, and I would prefer 9mm or .38. Here are the weapons I am considering, and my current thoughts on each.

Ruger LCR - feels great in my hands, gets great reviews, and is within my price range and just barely pocketable. Obvious downsides are that it is bigish for pocket carry, you only get 5 shots, and reloading is slower.

Ruger LCP - I've never held one, but I suspect it is not a great fit for my hands. Downside is the cartridge, both because of lethality and cost of practicing. But it is definitely pocketable in any of my pants.

Ruger LC9 - feels a bit too skinny in my hands IIRC. But it is magazine-fed, comes in my preferred caliber, and gets solid reviews.

I am also considering the Keltec PF9, the keltec .380, and others. But that gives you an idea of my price range and what I've got in mind. I'm leaning towards the LCR, but there are advantages and disadvantages to each of these options.

What I would like is for the pocket carry folks to chime in on their experiences with these weapons, your other suggestions, and anything else that comes to mind. If it is relevant, I am a big dude, I typically wear khakis, slacks, or jeans, and I am committed to the pocket carry idea, at least for this particular purchase.

Thanks!
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Old November 17, 2012, 02:04 PM   #2
Mello2u
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Have you considered any Kahr products?
For comparison I have copied and pasted the specs of the LC9, the PM9 and the PM40.
I own the PM40 and it is a fine value. It has a nice trigger action, although I really prefer a shorter pull. But as a compromise of size, reliability and power I find it excellent.

Thinness is a major factor in concealability of a handgun. The LC9, of these three, is the thinnest; but it also has the greatest height and length.

Ruger LC9 9 x 19mm
Frame: Glass Filled Nylon
MSRP: $443
Operation: DA; Slide Lock;
Manual Safety
Capacity: 7 +1
Barrel/Overall Length: 3.09/5.89”
Height: 4.5”
Width: 1.0”
Weight Empty: 17.2 oz.
Weight Fully Loaded: 20 oz.

Kahr PM9 9 x 19 mm
Frame: Polymer
CM9093 Matte SS Slide $565
Operation: DAO, Slide Catch
Capacity: 6 +1
Barrel/Overall Length: 3.0/5.68”
Height: 4.2”
Width: 1.08”
Weight Empty: 16.9 oz.
Weight Fully Loaded: 20 oz.

Kahr PM40 .40 S&W
Frame: Polymer
PM4043 Matte SS Slide $786
Operation: DAO, Slide Catch
Capacity: 5 +1
Barrel/Overall Length: 3.0/5.65”
Height: 4.3”
Width: 1.10”
Weight Empty 18.5 oz
Weight Fully Loaded: 23 oz.

These specs were found at the following link:
http://www.mouseguns.com/PocketAutoComparison.pdf
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Old November 17, 2012, 02:57 PM   #3
PeterGreg
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my EDC is a LCP I got an LCR.38spl for daughter and I also own a Kel-tec P-11 MY EDC IS A LCP nough said.
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Old November 17, 2012, 04:29 PM   #4
jasmith85
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I am very happy with my LC9. I have also owned an LCP. It functioned perfectly for me but it was just too tiny. I have no experience with the LCR though.
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Old November 17, 2012, 06:18 PM   #5
Kevin Rohrer
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Take a look at the SIG P938, Kimber Solo, and Rohrbaugh.

As for myself, my "last resort if nothing else fits" is a S&W 36 in a Mika pocket holster. But I am about to buy a Kimber Ultra RCP 1911, as the rule of thumb is: carry the most powerful handgun you can control and conceal.
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Old November 17, 2012, 06:28 PM   #6
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I've got a Taurus 709 Slim in 9mm. For the money you can't beat it. YouTube is chock full of 709 Slim pleased owners. The Beretta Nano would be a great pick as well.
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Old November 17, 2012, 06:58 PM   #7
barstoolguru
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pocket carry is an accident waiting to happen
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Old November 17, 2012, 07:29 PM   #8
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My carry gun is an LCP in front pocket. I don't feel like anything much bigger would conceal very well for me. Sure it's a little on the small side, but that's what I like about it for pocket carry. It's not so small that I can't shoot it well. If you want something much bigger, then you might not really want pocket carry.
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Old November 17, 2012, 07:39 PM   #9
lee n. field
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I'll comment on what I know about.

Quote:
Ruger LCP - I've never held one, but I suspect it is not a great fit for my hands. Downside is the cartridge, both because of lethality and cost of practicing. But it is definitely pocketable in any of my pants.

Ruger LC9 - feels a bit too skinny in my hands IIRC. But it is magazine-fed, comes in my preferred caliber, and gets solid reviews.

I am also considering the Keltec PF9, the keltec .380, and others. But that gives you an idea of my price range and what I've got in mind. I'm leaning towards the LCR, but there are advantages and disadvantages to each of these options.
LCP. I have one. I haven't had it real long, or run that many rounds through it yet. Grip is very small for me, and even the pinky exension doesn't quite make it big enough for me. Sights are vestigial, almost useless. I contemplate one of Laserlyte's sidemount lasers for it. I have the feeling it might be serving as a good luck charm, more than anything.

PF9 (and by extension, much of this might apply to the LC9 which is a copy of "an homage to" the PF9: Skinny single stack grip, but I don't think that's a problem for me. I'm coming to think skinny might be better. Mine shoots straight. It does fit in a pocket, even if a lot of people say it doesn't. The pinky extension makes it a good solid two finger grip for me, but I tend to use it without. Mine had some light strike failure issues (not uncommon) that a trip to the factory appears to have completely fixed.

And, Mika holsters. Get one.
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Old November 17, 2012, 07:50 PM   #10
Warrior1256
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May I suggest a S & W .38 642 Airweight revolver. It is small, lightweight, accurate and powerful as it will shoot +P ammo. It also has an internal hammer so as not to snag as you pull it out of your pocket. It holds 5 rds. In warm weather when I can not dress easily to conceal anything larger I stick the Airweight in my front pants pocket and go. I like a larger caliber but if the Airweight was the only handgun I owned I would feel well protected.
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Old November 17, 2012, 08:07 PM   #11
orionengnr
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I have a PM9, and have owned, fired or carried some of the others, including j-frames of steel, aluminum and Scandium.

The PM9 is significantly shorter than a j-frame front-to rear and as such is easier to conceal in any normal pocket. (IMHO)

I am attempting to attach a pic, but generally don't have much luck with that. Oh well, here goes nothin'.


Quote:
pocket carry is an accident waiting to happen
Attached Images
File Type: jpg 642_vs_PM9.jpg (49.1 KB, 72 views)
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Old November 17, 2012, 08:44 PM   #12
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Glock 26 fits in my pockets. I just picked up a Sig p938 which also will be a pocket pistol.
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Old November 17, 2012, 08:44 PM   #13
weblance
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Quote:
pocket carry is an accident waiting to happen
What a ridiculous statement. Pocket carry with a good holster that covers the trigger, and the appropriate handgun, is as safe, as any other method of carry.

You will find the LC9 too big for comfortable pocket carry. I like a good snub nosed revolver with an enclosed, or shrouded hammer. I carry a Smith & Wesson 638. The LCR is also a good choice. Taurus makes a 9mm snub nosed revolver that is a good choice, but a little heavy. I like to keep my pocket rockets at 15 oz max. The small autoloaders are good, but can be hard to grip, and control under recoil. For me, a revolver is easier to control. Consider suspenders under your shirt if you dont like a belt. Even the small weapons will drag your pocket down without a belt or suspenders.
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Old November 17, 2012, 09:19 PM   #14
Grant D
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I've found the LCP the best pocket pistol for me.
I carry it in my back pocket,but buy a Hogue grip for it and it's a pleasure to shoot.
Some times I also carry a S&W Model 37 in my front pocket, or my LC9 in a iwb crossbreed holster.
I find it (the LC9) a little heavy for pocket carry.
Hogue makes a grip for it also,which also helps tame the recoil.

And I'm a believer in suspenders,I wear them every day,they sure make a big difference.
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Old November 17, 2012, 09:44 PM   #15
vytoland
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ANY S&W "J" frame .38 special..............accurate, reliable, easy to carry
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Old November 17, 2012, 09:47 PM   #16
vytoland
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Quote:
pocket carry is an accident waiting to happen


yes indeed....much better to keep it with your stool
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Old November 17, 2012, 10:06 PM   #17
JC57
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I am also a "big dude". My pocket carry is a S&W model 642, in a Desantis Nemesis pocket holster. It carries fine in Dockers slacks and jeans, front right pocket.

I'm on the lookout for a pocketable 9mm for my next purchase but funds are tight so it will have to wait for a while.

Last edited by JC57; November 17, 2012 at 10:41 PM.
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Old November 17, 2012, 10:43 PM   #18
Luger_carbine
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I saw one of those Taurus 380 ACP revolvers at LGD yesterday, those are pretty compact revolvers.

The Rohrbaugh is a pretty small package too, but it's expensive.
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Old November 18, 2012, 12:06 AM   #19
psychohellbilly666
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I'll throw out a suggestion that hasn't been mentioned. I just got an XDS. Love it. Carries well. Might be a stretch for pocket carry in jeans but should be good in khakis or cargo shorts. I carry in the supplied kydex holster. 5 rounds of 45acp. I carried a LCP and also a beretta tomcat. I prefer the XDS.
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Old November 18, 2012, 12:46 AM   #20
TennJed
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Quote:
Originally Posted by barstoolguru View Post
pocket carry is an accident waiting to happen
Can you share in what makes you think this?
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Old November 18, 2012, 07:42 AM   #21
larryh1108
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Quote:
Quote:
Originally Posted by barstoolguru
pocket carry is an accident waiting to happen

Can you share in what makes you think this?
With the way he posted his original thought, I don't think I'm interested in his thoughts of why.
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Old November 18, 2012, 08:57 AM   #22
barstoolguru
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Quote:
Can you share in what makes you think this?
First off the position of the gun to the leg in the pocket carry position basically aims the gun in the direction of a major artery so if there was an AD/ND most likely you will bleed to death in seconds

Second: pocket carry is very restrictive in sitting and has no tactical advantage so getting to the gun under stress forces one to draw in a less then desirable position and cause of that can increase chances of an AD/ND
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Old November 18, 2012, 09:12 AM   #23
hardhat harry
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^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^FAIL^^^^^^^^^^
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Old November 18, 2012, 09:34 AM   #24
AH.74
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Quote:
First off the position of the gun to the leg in the pocket carry position basically aims the gun in the direction of a major artery so if there was an AD/ND most likely you will bleed to death in seconds

Second: pocket carry is very restrictive in sitting and has no tactical advantage so getting to the gun under stress forces one to draw in a less then desirable position and cause of that can increase chances of an AD/ND
Poorly-thought out logic.

Bleed to death in seconds. Right.

Pocket carry is very popular and widespread as a practice. You do not hear of many problems happening. Most people do it in a responsible, thoughtful manner.

There are those of us who carry in the rear pocket. Where does that fit in to your scheme? No pointing at your leg, and no problem drawing.
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Old November 18, 2012, 09:37 AM   #25
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One thing to think about/consider is how you might wind up having to use your weapon.

The chances that you will have to use your weapon a contact distance and/or after being knocked supine might be fairly high.

The likelihood of you drawing your weapon while standing squared up to the target may be less likely.

You aren't a LEO, you are just a private citizen defending yourself. You aren't likely to draw your weapon and hold someone at gun point, you are most likely going to be reacting to an attack and be well behind the power curve.

Your usage of a weapon is going to be much more like a police officer using a backup weapon.

Keep that in mind when choosing your weapon.

In those situations, a revolver really shines as a "get off me" weapon.
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