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Seeking Single Stack Subcompact Carry Gun.

shotgunshooter3shotgunshooter3 Senior MemberPosts: 5,851 Senior Member
The title says it all, I'm seeking a subcompact 9mm or .45 for CC under a t-shirt.

I fired an XDs and liked it, a lot, but they seem overpriced.

I'm open to any and all suggestions so long as it isn't a Taurus, and has a decent selection of holsters.

How is the Kel-Tec PF9? The $300 OTD pricing is very tempting.
- I am a rifleman with a poorly chosen screen name. -
"Slow is smooth, smooth is fast, and speed is the economy of motion" - Scott Jedlinski
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Replies

  • timctimc Senior Member Posts: 6,684 Senior Member
    My favorite is the Kahr CW45. Almost rust proof, light weight, accurate and super reliable. You can find them for about $400.
    timc - formerly known as timc on the last G&A forum and timc on the G&A forum before that and the G&A forum before that.....
    AKA: Former Founding Member
  • bisleybisley Senior Member Posts: 10,798 Senior Member
    I think Dan Chamberlain bought a PF-9 and replaced it with an XDs. His input might be useful to you. Personally, the XDs is exactly what I was looking for. I like it better than my K series Kahrs that cost a good bit more than the XDs.
  • REDDEVILREDDEVIL Member Posts: 153 Member
    The shield is the same size as the xds. My wife has one and it is very ergonomic in my hands, has a good trigger compared to the xds, but the xds has a great trigger imo. In the same price range is the kahr cm9, which is smaller, but has a DAO trigger. The other con, for some people, is the front sight is pinned in and they are polymer, but trijicon makes night sights for them and the front sight ends up srewing in like a glock. The NS are $80, and you still are nowhere near the pm9, or xds price range,... More mags and ammo and holster galore. These are only about $100 more than the kel tec and imo worlds apart in quality. Happy hunting
  • Diver43Diver43 Senior Member Posts: 11,383 Senior Member
    When I checked out the PF-9 it had a horrible trigger so I kept looking. My wife got a LC-9 for almost free, and while a nice looking gun, easy to carry and extremely reliable, it also has a horrible trigger. I ended up with the SW Shield. While not perfect I liked it a lot and it has become my go to carry gun. If I had it to do over I might give the kahrs a closer look.
    Logistics cannot win a war, but its absence or inadequacy can cause defeat. FM100-5
  • REDDEVILREDDEVIL Member Posts: 153 Member
    Oh,.. I forgot to mention, I owned a kel tec P11 and it was of horrible quality. I corrected the fit and finish myself and if the trigger wasn't so horrible it would have been a steal of a deal- cheap price for a little elbow work, but nothing could be done for the trigger, even after a fluff n buff. I have never owned a PF9, I am just assuming similar.
  • LMLarsenLMLarsen Senior Member Posts: 8,337 Senior Member
    Get a Shield. It's mite bigger than the PF9 but much better quality, and you're already familiar with the M&P design.
    “A gun is a tool, no better or no worse than any other tool: an axe, a shovel or anything. A gun is as good or as bad as the man using it. Remember that.”

    NRA Endowment Member
  • NNNN Senior Member Posts: 24,864 Senior Member
    Subcompacts are for women and children.
  • LMLarsenLMLarsen Senior Member Posts: 8,337 Senior Member
    :roll:
    “A gun is a tool, no better or no worse than any other tool: an axe, a shovel or anything. A gun is as good or as bad as the man using it. Remember that.”

    NRA Endowment Member
  • VarmintmistVarmintmist Senior Member Posts: 7,535 Senior Member
    I got a PF9 and for a pocket pistol, it meets and or exceeds any reasonable requirement IMHO.

    The trigger is long and heavy. There is no safe and It Aint A Target Gun (IAATG). It will shoot a lot better than I expected though after you learn the trigger. You can do Min of pie plate at 20 yards shooting as fast as you can get it back on target. It has eaten everything I put through it without a burp. I put a lazer on mine for kicks and was shooting fist sized groups at 25, however the lazer added weight and length so it went away, IAATG. The grip is little and with 124gr hp defense type loads, the recoil is ... snappy. It is also not smooth, which IMHO would be a lousy thing to have in any pistol where the grip only extends 2/3's into my palm. It is rough with edges and wont fall out of your paw. I do not enjoy shooting it, it isnt made to be fun to shoot, it was made to hide and that works. Again IAATG. Now, it dissapears in the back pocket of most of my jeans, weighs about as little as I think it can, and is a 9mm. It can ride in my pack and fits in the little pocket of my hammock.
    So far, it has gone off every time I have pulled the trigger. Will I be bouncing a coffee can at 200 yards with one? Not likely, but if the need arises, I feel very confident about putting 8 rounds in a man sized target at far enough range to make a differance.

    If I didnt trust it, I wouldnt have gotten one for my wife.
    It's boring, and your lack of creativity knows no bounds.
  • VarmintmistVarmintmist Senior Member Posts: 7,535 Senior Member
    NN wrote: »
    Subcompacts are for women and children.

    Only subcompact 270's
    It's boring, and your lack of creativity knows no bounds.
  • bobbyrlf3bobbyrlf3 Senior Member Posts: 2,559 Senior Member
    I wouldn't call the XD-s overpriced, unless you're paying a premium due to lack of availability. My experience with it on a recent trip to the hills was that I could feel the quality of the gun when I held it, which is confidence inspiring. It's too small for my hands, but I shot it fine, and I have no problem telling people it's a fine CCW. I think that's worth paying a fair price for, since you're trusting your life to it.
    Knowledge is essential to living freely and fully; understanding gives knowledge purpose and strength; wisdom is combining the two and applying them appropriately in words and actions.
  • 1965Jeff1965Jeff Senior Member Posts: 1,648 Senior Member
    Whatever trigger you prefer, and or shoot best with is a major consideration. If you like Glock-style or the Kahr DAO etc. Is a commander sub compact enough for you?
  • BigDanSBigDanS Senior Member Posts: 6,992 Senior Member
    What about the LC9? LC380?

    D
    "A patriot is mocked, scorned and hated; yet when his cause succeeds, all men will join him, for then it costs nothing to be a patriot." Mark Twain
    Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.... now who's bringing the hot wings? :jester:
  • breamfisherbreamfisher Senior Member Posts: 13,561 Senior Member
    LMLarsen wrote: »
    :roll:
    Do you really want to listen to someone who wears a fannie pack?
    Overkill is underrated.
  • SirGeorgeKillianSirGeorgeKillian Senior Member Posts: 5,463 Senior Member
    NN wrote: »
    Subcompacts are for women and children.

    Hey yall, Ned is the authority on things suitable for womens and children. I mean the 327 says it all!
    Unless life also hands you water and sugar, your lemonade is gonna suck!
    Wambli Ska wrote: »
    I'm in love with a Glock
  • twatwa Senior Member Posts: 2,238 Senior Member
    I have both the PF-9 which I have carried for the past 3 years, and the XDS. The trigger on the PF-9 is a little heavy but not terrible, it is light and very comfortable to wear which I found is the most important thing for me, because I have found if it isn't easy to carry, I won't carry it. I have been on a quest the past few years for a conceal carry .45, after a bad experience with a Kahr PM45 (I own a PM40 and love it) which I thought would be the ticket, and trying to carry a Kimber Ultra II which I found I could not comfortably carry and conceal I came across the XDS. This gun is the real deal for a conceal carry .45. Yes it is a little pricey, but it is worth it in the long run, you will be very happy with it. It is very reliable, not unpleasant to shoot and conceals better than any other .45 I have owned. As far as comparison between the Kel-tec and Springfield, they are not in the same class, but that being said, the PF-9 is a great gun. All depends on what you really want. In the summer months I find myself pocket carrying a Kel-tec .380 for ease and comfort more than anything and I have quite a few in the carry class to choose from. To each his own, or how you feel that day I find.
  • JayhawkerJayhawker Moderator Posts: 17,315 Senior Member
    Glock 36....nuff said...
    Sharps Model 1874 - "The rifle that made the west safe for Winchester"
  • BigslugBigslug Senior Member Posts: 8,500 Senior Member

    I fired an XDs and liked it, a lot, but they seem overpriced.

    #1. Insert right hand into back pocket.
    #2. Insert left hand into back pocket.
    #3. With each hand, grab yourself firmly.
    #4. Ask yourself, How much is this worth to me?
    WWJMBD?

    "Nothing is safe from stupid." - Zee
  • VarmintmistVarmintmist Senior Member Posts: 7,535 Senior Member
    twa wrote: »
    , it is light and very comfortable to wear which I found is the most important thing for me, because I have found if it isn't easy to carry, I won't carry it. .

    :that:
    It's boring, and your lack of creativity knows no bounds.
  • horselipshorselips Senior Member Posts: 3,628 Senior Member
    I hope you've already shot a subcompact chambered in 9mm or .45ACP, because if you haven't, you should before you buy one. In a subcompact, usually weighing in at under 1 pound empty and just over that loaded, high powered calibers are very difficult to control. In a CC gun, caliber and capacity are the least important considerations. Handling, meaning target acquisition, ease of recoil control, accurate and repeated shot placement are paramount concerns.

    Never mind the "caliber queens" since real experts who've done the research and crunched the numbers will fill you with annoying data showing no handgun caliber is really a reliable first round and, often enough, even second round stopper. The same data will reveal to near universal amazement that first round kills with .22 LR as common as you'd have never expected. No, I'm not recommending a .22LR. Relax. Don't shoot the messenger. Thanks.

    You are wise to specify a single stack subcompact, since anything even marginally larger in any dimension will almost definitely be left at home sooner or later. And when that happens, it might as well be on the moon for all the good it will do you. Rule #1-HAVE A GUN. Period. Every-effing-day, Every-effing-where. The one day you leave it home will be the day......

    In a subcompact, I would go for a less powerful, but far more controllable, and thus ultimately more effective chambering, such as .380ACP or even .32ACP. If I had to have a 9mm or .45ACP, I would step up just a bit in size to a weapon weighing around 1.5 pounds empty, such as the subcompact 1911s offered by Kimber and Springfield Armory. They have enough of a grip to keep comfortable control of the weapon if the situation should require multiple discharges. For safety's sake, and for more certain reliability, ammo selection and build quality, if I had my druthers, a subcompact REVOLVER in .38 Special+P such as a J frame S&W would be far and away my first choice.

    So, what do I carry? Why, a NAA Mini Revolver in .22 WMR of course. 1 5/8" barrel. Don't laugh -you seriously don't want to be shot with one. Modern defense loadings developed for mini revolvers by Winchester, Federal and Hornady all deliver ~1000 FPS velocities, deep penetration, and reliable expansion. But most important, it is supremely controllable, supremely small and light, and best of all, it never, ever gets left at home. Never.
  • KENFU1911KENFU1911 Senior Member Posts: 1,052 Senior Member
    IF Ya don't mind something that's hard to find mags for.....and parts are tough also.... the old STARS.....PD 45...or BK/BKM....were damn nice little weapons..... I have an old PD....and wish I had 6 more of 'EM.....Ken
    My idea of a warning shot is when the 2nd bad guy watches his 1st buddy go down....
  • bisleybisley Senior Member Posts: 10,798 Senior Member
    Jayhawker wrote: »
    Glock 36....nuff said...

    The only reason I didn't buy a Glock 36 was the side by side comparison to the G30. There just isn't enough difference in the width to make me want to give up the extra magazine capacity. In my hands, using a combat grip, I couldn't tell the difference. The XDs is significantly smaller in every dimension, almost exactly the same size as the Kahrs, but it has the feel of a larger pistol, probably due to the trigger reach and grip width, which is a big factor for people with 'largish' hands.
  • North ForestNorth Forest Member Posts: 358 Member
    I have an XDs with the extended mags for my carry and am very happy with it all around. The extended mags make a big difference in feel and shooting stability for me.

    Here's mine...

    XDs45upgrade1.jpg
  • LMLarsenLMLarsen Senior Member Posts: 8,337 Senior Member
    horselips wrote: »
    I hope you've already shot a subcompact chambered in 9mm or .45ACP, because if you haven't, you should before you buy one. In a subcompact, usually weighing in at under 1 pound empty and just over that loaded, high powered calibers are very difficult to control. In a CC gun, caliber and capacity are the least important considerations. Handling, meaning target acquisition, ease of recoil control, accurate and repeated shot placement are paramount concerns.

    I have to disagree. My 9mm Shield is no more difficult to shoot than my 4" .45. I can keep all seven shots in a 5" group at 25 yards easily, and recoil is not a concern with a proper grip.
    “A gun is a tool, no better or no worse than any other tool: an axe, a shovel or anything. A gun is as good or as bad as the man using it. Remember that.”

    NRA Endowment Member
  • bullsi1911bullsi1911 Moderator Posts: 11,404 Senior Member
    STI Duty One: http://www.stiguns.com/the-sti-duty-one-3/

    :D

    Personally, I trust Kahr for my single stack sub-compact 9mm. I bought it on a whim a LONG time ago, and have never had an issue. It works, it's accurate, and very concealable.
    To make something simple is a thousand times more difficult than to make something complex.
    -Mikhail Kalashnikov
  • bisleybisley Senior Member Posts: 10,798 Senior Member
    LMLarsen wrote: »
    I have to disagree. My 9mm Shield is no more difficult to shoot than my 4" .45. I can keep all seven shots in a 5" group at 25 yards easily, and recoil is not a concern with a proper grip.

    I agree with this statement. While most of the stuff horselips said is fairly accurate for a new shooter, a little instruction and a lot of practice will eliminate many of those problems. I can't do the 5" @ 25 yards, yet, with the XDs, but I haven't practiced enough with it, yet. I was doing paper plates @ 25 yards with a CZ RAMI, when I was practicing more, and out of a 10 shot magazine, half of them were probably in a 5" group.
  • Shooter13Shooter13 Member Posts: 125 Member
    I have a Shield and like it a lot.. I do think the trigger on my xd9 is better than the shield. If you think about the price of an xds it's really not that overpriced. You get a better trigger and fiber optic sights.. Add that to a shield and the price will be more than an xds. You won't be disappointed with either gun..
    Or u could just get the glock.. The one that is not single stack..
  • shotgunshooter3shotgunshooter3 Senior Member Posts: 5,851 Senior Member
    Does anybody have experience with the Sig P290?
    - I am a rifleman with a poorly chosen screen name. -
    "Slow is smooth, smooth is fast, and speed is the economy of motion" - Scott Jedlinski
  • knitepoetknitepoet Senior Member Posts: 21,658 Senior Member
    NN wrote: »
    327s are for women and children.
    Fixed it for you NN :p

    I like the Kahr PM series personally
    Seven Habits of Highly Effective Pirates, Rule #37: There is no “overkill”. There is only “open fire” and “I need to reload”.


  • RiflemannRiflemann Member Posts: 269 Member
    S&W M&P 40 Shield. I can shoot my Shield almost as good as my 5" M&P40L CORE.
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