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Old May 25, 2021, 10:26 PM   #1
ATN082268
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Ideas for a backup gun

I was thinking about ideas for a backup gun and wanted some feedback. My initial thoughts were a small revolver and an ankle holster but I'd like to hear some thoughts regarding a specific gun and location of carry. I thought about this some time back but am now seriously considering it. I appreciate any constructive suggestions. Thank you.
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Old May 25, 2021, 11:04 PM   #2
KyJim
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I don't know where you normally carry your handgun, but I can recommend a Kahr CM9 in a DeSantis Nemesis pocket holster. Mags are either 6+1 or 7+1 of 9mm. Long, but smooth trigger so that you don't need an external safety. I have found it to be more concealable than a SW J-frame.
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Old May 26, 2021, 12:36 AM   #3
Bill DeShivs
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Buy a Keltec P32. Put it in your pocket. Never put anything else in that pocket.
Simple.
Ankle holsters are a great way to carry a gun that you can't get to.
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Old May 26, 2021, 03:17 AM   #4
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What's the specific purpose of the back up?

What do you normally carry?

Where do you carry it?
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Old May 26, 2021, 04:52 AM   #5
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Do you ever wear shorts?
90+ degree days and shorts are one of the reasons I nixed ankle carry.
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Old May 26, 2021, 06:06 AM   #6
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IMO if you carry a semi auto for primary, a pocket revolver revolver will be a good backup.

I usually carry a semi as a primary with a Kimber K6s or a S&W model 327 (38/357) and at times a Ruger LCR 327 (nice and small) in cargo pants pockets.

Small semis will also work. I will carry a Shield 40 or 45 as a backup at times.

I have an LCP 380, but do not have the confidence in 380 as of yet to carry it.

Good luck in your quest.
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Old May 26, 2021, 06:36 AM   #7
CDW4ME
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KyJim View Post
I can recommend a Kahr CM9 in a DeSantis Nemesis pocket holster. Mags are either 6+1 or 7+1 of 9mm. Long, but smooth trigger so that you don't need an external safety. I have found it to be more concealable than a SW J-frame.
This is where I'm at.

Kahr PM9 in weak hand front pocket as a "back up" or 2nd option to the Glock that is IWB.
Weak hand front pocket affords me the options of: putting my hand on gun without revealing I'm carrying and/or ability to quickly access gun with non-dominant hand.

I had a LCP 380 but the Kahr PM9 was easier to shoot fast & accurate one hand weak hand than the LCP despite that the PM9 was loaded with +P.
Also, should I be in need of the 2nd option, its gonna be a dire situation and I desire the ASAP potential of at least 9mm, in this case CorBon 115 +P.

My chronically untucked shirt covers some of the pocket (and conceals the Glock IWB) but a small hand sanitizer, roll of Life Savers, ect... breaks remaining outline.
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Old May 26, 2021, 06:45 AM   #8
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Americans spend the vast majority of their waking hours sitting on their butts. for this reason alone an ankle holster would serve better than anything in the pocket. that said you have to assess what your orbits will be and what activity you are most likely to be engaged.
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Old May 26, 2021, 07:47 AM   #9
ATN082268
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Originally Posted by Moonglum View Post
What's the specific purpose of the back up?

What do you normally carry?

Where do you carry it?
The purpose of my backup gun is in case something happens to my primary gun, broke, lost, out of ammo, etc and I need something reliable for a situation. My carry gun is a Glock 19x and I like the around 4 o'clock position. I don't wear shorts or swim trunks often.
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Old May 26, 2021, 11:04 AM   #10
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I don't know about Revolvers, but there are plenty of good semiautomatic BUGs on the market.

Personally, I chose a Ruger LCP. Small, slim, lightweight, easy to conceal, effortless to carry, and has been on the market for over a decade now, so no need to doubt that it works.



Some folks dislike the LCP, namely early adopters who had to contend with teething issues and seemingly cannot accept that the pistol has long since had all of the early bugs worked out, so they endlessly cite design issues which are no longer present/relevant. Others are those folks who apparently want to turn their .380 ACP Pocket Pistol into a poor-man's 9mm Pocket Pistol, so they load their .380s up with overpressure boutique loads like the so-called ".380 ACP +P" offered by Buffalo Bore, then are surprised when their LCP's slide rails crack under the stress of loads it was never designed to handle, and act like that's evidence of a design flaw. Then they'll recommend some heavy duty .380 Pistol that can handle such loads, which weighs more, is typically larger in every dimension, and is generally more expensive as well.

If you want 9mm power, then carry a 9mm Pistol, and accept that it's larger than a .380 Pocket Pistol for a reason, don't go messing around with overpressure .380 ACP loads that try to turn the round into 9mm. If you want to carry a heavy duty .380 ACP Pocket Pistol, then more power to you, but go with Standard Pressure ammo. It may be able to handle overpressure loads, but again, just buy a 9mm if .380 ACP isn't hot enough for you.
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Old May 26, 2021, 11:25 AM   #11
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Ruger LCP .380 in a pocket holster. Thin, light, dependable.
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Old May 26, 2021, 11:32 AM   #12
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S&W 442 in a pocket holster. I don't generally carry a back-up, but have used this combination as my primary carry gun. The gun is reliable, accurate enough and easy to conceal. The real disadvantage is there are only five rounds, but I usually also carry a speed loader.
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Old May 26, 2021, 12:15 PM   #13
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For me, I long ago decided that a back-up magazine is preferable to a back-up gun. The majority of issues with semi-autos is going to be magazine failure. An extra mag provides insurance from that. Of course it also adds capacity and a spare mag is easier to carry and conceal than an extra gun.
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Old May 26, 2021, 02:28 PM   #14
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+1 on the Kel Tec P32. If you really don't trust the "lowly" 32 ACP round, then go with the Kel Tec P3AT. I like the LCP but as a backup, it's larger than I like.
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Old May 26, 2021, 02:41 PM   #15
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All the above responses are good. The J-frame and the like are classic choices for backup. When I want a backup I find myself pocketing my PM9. But on occasion the 642 works too.
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Old May 26, 2021, 04:26 PM   #16
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Before you do ankle carry, go to one of the big box stores and buy a 2# ankle weight and put it on and go about your day walking, running or whatever and see how weird and off balance it is
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Old May 26, 2021, 08:17 PM   #17
Carl the Floor Walker
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Forte S+W View Post
I don't know about Revolvers, but there are plenty of good semiautomatic BUGs on the market.

Personally, I chose a Ruger LCP. Small, slim, lightweight, easy to conceal, effortless to carry, and has been on the market for over a decade now, so no need to doubt that it works.



Some folks dislike the LCP, namely early adopters who had to contend with teething issues and seemingly cannot accept that the pistol has long since had all of the early bugs worked out, so they endlessly cite design issues which are no longer present/relevant. Others are those folks who apparently want to turn their .380 ACP Pocket Pistol into a poor-man's 9mm Pocket Pistol, so they load their .380s up with overpressure boutique loads like the so-called ".380 ACP +P" offered by Buffalo Bore, then are surprised when their LCP's slide rails crack under the stress of loads it was never designed to handle, and act like that's evidence of a design flaw. Then they'll recommend some heavy duty .380 Pistol that can handle such loads, which weighs more, is typically larger in every dimension, and is generally more expensive as well.

If you want 9mm power, then carry a 9mm Pistol, and accept that it's larger than a .380 Pocket Pistol for a reason, don't go messing around with overpressure .380 ACP loads that try to turn the round into 9mm. If you want to carry a heavy duty .380 ACP Pocket Pistol, then more power to you, but go with Standard Pressure ammo. It may be able to handle overpressure loads, but again, just buy a 9mm if .380 ACP isn't hot enough for you.
Sorry, but disagree. I shoot ammo rated Plus P or over pressure 380 for a reason. It can give the best ballistics not because I want to turn the gun into a 9mm. Yes, the LCP is NOT designed to shoot over pressure ammo and will have cracks, spits etc.
But get a gun actually designed for Plus P as a "rating" and there will be None of those issues. And they are the Beretta Pico and Kahr CM9 or Glock. I know this for a fact from 10 Plus years of focusing of small 380's and shooting thousands of rounds through them including about 4 LCP's.. But even shooting standard ammo or low pressure ammo, these guns will last many thousands of rounds without failure. They are built to last

PS gunTest. just did a feature on 380 ammo and the main attention was how, that since their last test about 4 years earlier, the 380 which is so popular is improving all the time. A number of great ammo choices to choose from.
But getting back to the OP. I would not use a ankle holster. Just a good way to develop imbalance issues with lead to back issues besides being way too slow to get to.

Carry in a pocket, of your choice, but do train and practice with the gun. Experiment with different positions. Awib for a pocket gun is faster than in a pocket. Buy a timer and see what works best.
Spend a lot of time with them and you can do wonders way beyond what the internet would have you believe. In fact, I carry a pocket 380 as a primary in the vast majority of the times I leave the house. I love them and feel proficient with them. AWIB or small, lite holster.
The most pleasant to shoot are the Pico, the Kahr, and the Keltec P32 which is a super light weight gun that shoots excellent. It only weighs 10 oz fully loaded with 8 rounds.
All this said, I do not believe you need a backup or extra mag for Practical EDC. Just more stuff to tote around.

PS, I do not remember any teething issues with the LCP's and I bought them when they first came out. They were very reliable, never had a problem. They just were too snappy and did not hold up long. Other wise nice little guns. I just moved on to others. (Still own one)

The Little light weight P32.

Last edited by Carl the Floor Walker; May 28, 2021 at 08:22 PM.
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Old May 26, 2021, 09:33 PM   #18
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Floating J frame.
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Old May 26, 2021, 09:50 PM   #19
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Before you do ankle carry, go to one of the big box stores and buy a 2# ankle weight and put it on and go about your day walking, running or whatever and see how weird and off balance it is.
EXCELLENT point. Plus, you'll need to be an acrobat to get to it in extremis.

If you REALLY need a backup gun, a breast pocket stowed LCR or S&W Bodyguard 380 may be of some, if limited use. I can see the need for a BUG as an LEO, but for civilian use...? But then, just maybe you live/work near the "OK corral". JMHO & YMMv, Rod
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Old May 27, 2021, 05:25 AM   #20
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One thing I don’t get, why would you carry a gun of a different caliber for a BUG? I carry a compact 9mm and if I wanted a backup it would be an LCR in 9mm. This way I could strip ammo from the mag on the disabled gun and reload the revolver if I absolutely needed it.
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Old May 27, 2021, 05:41 AM   #21
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Whatever you decide to carry for a backup, make sure it's accessible when the situation goes from bad to worse. Ankle holsters are discreet but not practical to draw from.
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Old May 27, 2021, 08:40 AM   #22
JustJake
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Quote:
I was thinking about ideas for a backup gun and wanted some feedback.
"Back-up" for what? What's your primary EDC handgun? Mo' info needed ...

Quote:
My initial thoughts were a small revolver and an ankle holster but I'd like to hear some thoughts regarding a specific gun and location of carry.
Well, let's say for a second that you're a wannabe-Sonny Crockett.

You start your EDC dual weapons set-up by holstering your Big-Boy gun (i.e., your primary) in some type of shoulder rig under a covering garment. Usually it's an autoloader, especially if you're a Pro. Next, you choose an ankle holster of appropriate construction to hold your smaller, and hopefully lighter, "back-up" piece, ... say, a 3" 1911 like a Colt Defender or New Agent.

The key there is the ankle rig needs to hold the second gun securely, unless you're okay with walking with a discernible wobble - or gawd-forbid you run with it at some point. Pros-in-the-Know with badges keep theirs strapped super tight, in case they have to chase a drug dealer down the street. Daily foot-pursuits really test the viability of an ankle rig.

Quote:
I thought about this some time back but am now seriously considering it.
Because ... maybe ... you were in a gunfight and your primary weapon proved insufficient?

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Old May 28, 2021, 10:57 AM   #23
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If you don't wear shorts often, then YES, a small handgun in an ankle holster makes sense.
I would recommend a Ruger LCR in 9mm since you already carry a Glock 19, so there is no need to carry 2 different calibers.
If the ankle holster doesn't work for you, then maybe a belly band holster.
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Old May 28, 2021, 03:41 PM   #24
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Whatever you decide to carry for a backup, make sure it's accessible when the situation goes from bad to worse. Ankle holsters are discreet but not practical to draw from.
First concealed carry class I went to the instructor carried in an ankle holster. He pointed out that if you have been knocked to the ground the ankle carry may be easier than some of the more traditional, depending on how you land.
He also did point out your pants need to be loose, no peg-leg jeans.
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Old May 28, 2021, 06:08 PM   #25
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Ruger LCP in a Dasantis Nemesis pocket holster or in an ankle rig. You wanna go smaller get a NAA Pug in 22 mag.
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