Small handguns

A bucket for anything that does not fit the above forum categories, both longgun and handgun.

Small handguns

Postby Archer » 09 Feb 2020 01

This topic has been created at the suggestion of GasGuzzler as an offshoot from a discussion that developed in the 92 forum started by Ranch Dog's commentary on Taurus catalog changes that dropped the .380 and .32 caliber autos from their offerings and comparing their last couple models of each caliber.

My comments were:

I own a LC380ca that's not bad and I bought the conversion kit to make it a LC9.
I haven't shot the LCP. From what I've heard it is quite a bit smaller than the LC380 and about as small as a .380 ought to get.

The LC380 is not bad. The silly posterior Kalifornia DoJ handgun roster means we get the ca version instead of the one with the better trigger. (Kamala Harris and Arnold's faults IMO.)

The LC9 is usable and not bad but it IS so thin that IMO it is at the limit of what's comfortable with the 9mm.
The Smith & Wesson Shield is slightly bigger than the LC9 but a whole lot more comfortable to shoot, particularly beyond a single mag.

The Sig P238 is excellent but it will cost you a pretty penny. I'd still like to get my hands on a Colt .380 Government but the P238 will do.

I own a couple 100 year old .32 Autos. A Colt 1903 and a Savage 1907 and IMO neither one of them is particularly something I want to rely on over any of the guns listed above in .380 and I'd surely rather have either the Springfield EMP or the Kimber CDP Ultra both of which I own. Something very comforting in sending two to six times the amount of lead toward the bad guy from a reliable controllable launcher.


Further, I own a Remington R51 from the second time Remington issued them after they apparently thought they got the bugs worked out of them. It is a small 9mm with a rather unique action that is pleasant to shoot. The gun does have a backstrap that must be squeezed in order to fire it and is quite compact with nice swooping lines. It is a bit of a pain in the posterior to field strip and get completely clean and reassembled. I do wonder about the fact that the receiver is alloy and the way the steel action components interface with it regarding long term high round count durability. So far however it has been a nice handgun for the 100 or so rounds I have through it. This gun is not available in CA.

During my recent trip to GA I held what I think was a Springfield 911 in 9mm. The gun I held was quite chunky and felt as if the frame was steel although Springfield only lists a aluminum alloy anodized frame option on their website for this gun and list the weight at 15 ounces unloaded. I would have sworn the gun I held weighed quite a bit more than a pound. The grip was also quite short and the gun felt awkward.

Both my Springfield EMPs and my Kimber CDP Ultras are alloy frame guns. They feel solid but are quite a bit lighter than a steel framed equivalent. I was at first somewhat hesitant to go with an alloy frame in a 1911 style gun as I have always had steel framed 1911s and I've heard some complain about the increased felt recoil in the alloy framed versions but I was able to try a used Kimber CDP Ultra at a local gunshop that was being sold by one of the clerks. I really liked the way it felt and shot. When I asked him why he was selling he said he had two and had decided he only needed one. As the price was only $100 off new and a new gun came with a warranty which that one did not I elected to pay the extra and get one new. I have no complaints about it. The second one I picked up on sale several hundred less than I'd normally be able to get it and was unable to turn it down.

When I decided to get the Sig P238 I also got that gun in the alloy frame as it was also on sale at the time. I have considered getting the steel frame one but in truth have not felt the need since the alloy one is quite comfortable to shoot and the lighter weight is more in line with CCW. (CCW of course not being something that is available to those of us living in most of CA. The LA county sheriff would rather advocate for and hire sheriff officers who have been convicted of domestic violence and stalking and involve himself in illegal alien and minority advocate politics than trust the citizens with their constitutional rights.)
Archer
2000 Shots
2000 Shots
 
Posts: 2933
Joined: 04 Feb 2014
Has thanked: 89 times
Been thanked: 409 times
My Rossi Choice: M92
Location: SoCal Loco

Re: Small handguns

Postby Arroyoshark » 15 Feb 2020 13

Not entirely getting the "bent" of this particular thread. Is it about mouse guns generally, or about steel v.s. alloy framed small pieces ?

In the 1911 arena, I've seen reliable sources state that alloy framed 1911 Commanders will easily run at least 20,000 rounds without any frame fatigue or cracking, usually around where the slide release pin goes through frame. I recall also reading that S&W scandium alloy 1911 frames will run 30,000 rounds safely. That's quite a few range sessions.

Some guys in my shooting group run S&W SC1911 and Kimber 1911 Pro Carry 1911's and are seemingly trying to put the projected frame life to the test. Another guy regularly uses a Kimber Ultra Lightweight .45. They are all mindful of lubing rails, and none of these "shake, rattle or roll". The recoil remains manageable as well.

I had a SS Sig P238 HD for a few years. Can't say I preferred the extra weight of the all steel after handling the alloy P238's. I moved the steel P238 on to a new owner.

Personally, I prefer hammer fired semis to striker fired models, but that is me. For field carry, I preferred a Ruger SP101 I had many years ago. Solid, accurate pieces.
When sitting down to clean a gun, the first step is to load another gun - Elmer Keith
User avatar
Arroyoshark
RR Riders
RR Riders
 
Posts: 174
Joined: 03 Sep 2012
Has thanked: 9 times
Been thanked: 52 times
My Rossi Choice: Revolver
Location: fin del sendero, New Mexico

Re: Small handguns

Postby GasGuzzler » 16 Feb 2020 07

We got way off track when a topic about R92s morphed into a topic about 25A and 32A pistols. I suggested the topics get split but only one of several comments made it here so it looks funny now.

I have a Shield9 and a Nano that are similar but very different. I'm not sure what to say about either but They're both 9X19 and very small. I don't see the point in calibers smaller than 9X19 when you can get guns like those listed above. To each his own.

The S&W is narrower but longer and taller than the Beretta. The Shield seems quite a bitter lighter but internet research says the Shield is one ounce heavier. I'll have to weigh them myself.

Both are single stacks. Shield has 7 and 8 round magazines available. The Nano has 6 and 8 round magazines (it's shorter, see above). I bought pinky extensions for the Nano's short magazines. Now looking into the same for the Shield.

The Nano has a stainless chassis that is serialized but that fits into a polymer grip frame making changing colors, etc. easy. This is not a plus to all and not a plus to me. It has a stainless slide and barrel. The Shield is a more traditional stainless reinforced polymer frame with a stainless slide and barrel.

Both are striker fired and double action only. The Nano has no safety. The Shield comes both ways but I have the safety version. Pics to come...
__________________________________________________________________________________________
I've always been crazy but it's kept me from going insane.
User avatar
GasGuzzler
Supporter
Supporter
 
Posts: 2195
Joined: 02 Nov 2015
Has thanked: 216 times
Been thanked: 298 times
My Rossi Choice: Revolver
Location: Cooke County, TX

Re: Small handguns

Postby GasGuzzler » 16 Feb 2020 09

Who cares the weight of an empty carry gun? Not me. Here you can see the size difference with the Beretta on the left and the Smith on the right. There is a 0.1 ounce difference when they are both empty with no magazine. The Shield holds one more round when using the smaller magazines. A Hornady Critical Defense 9X19 round weighs 0.4 ounce.

Image
Image
Image
Image
__________________________________________________________________________________________
I've always been crazy but it's kept me from going insane.
User avatar
GasGuzzler
Supporter
Supporter
 
Posts: 2195
Joined: 02 Nov 2015
Has thanked: 216 times
Been thanked: 298 times
My Rossi Choice: Revolver
Location: Cooke County, TX

Re: Small handguns

Postby Archer » 16 Feb 2020 14

Thread is about small handguns regardless of construction, materials, manufacturer or caliber.
Feel free to cover everything from single or two shot derringers to modern officer sized 3" barreled semi autos.
Feel free to go as far as you want in describing the guns and your impressions of them.

With regards to materials, I may have gotten a bit long winded regarding my impressions of the differences or lack thereof. Take those musings for what they are my impressions or ask for more clarification as you have.

I did not intend to be confusing but weight of a weapon IS a factor, especially when it comes to the Officer sized guns. You may be talking 8-10 ounces and that usually boils down to materials. While that might not matter quite as much considering the ammo load out of 7 to 12 rounds of .45 ACP for the loaded gun (not counting a spare mag with another 8 to 12 rounds (Wilson extended officers or Para P12.)) it can still be significant when it comes to dragging down a garment pocket and tipping off where it is stashed.

With regards to my personal transition from my first couple handgun that was a full sized 1911 followed by a Govt Ruger MKII bull barreled target .22LR to eventually picking up small alloy and polymer framed guns designed for concealed carry, there is probably going to be a durability hit in the gross number of rounds that the weapon will last. As you point out, the round count one can expect from such a weapon is probably well beyond what most of us are going to put through one before it fails and probably beyond many will ever shoot before it even loosens up.
Archer
2000 Shots
2000 Shots
 
Posts: 2933
Joined: 04 Feb 2014
Has thanked: 89 times
Been thanked: 409 times
My Rossi Choice: M92
Location: SoCal Loco

Re: Small handguns

Postby Archer » 16 Feb 2020 14

GasGuzzler,
I'm not familiar with the Beretta Nano that much. However it looks like you are comparing a small poly framed carry gun to another small poly framed carry gun. Apples to apples.

More along the lines of what I might have been trying to convey...
A few months ago I went to the range with a coworker who wanted to try out a Sig P238 and a Ruger LC380ca as he was thinking about getting a new CCW for personal protection while out walking with his wife. Since I had one of each I offered to let him try them out and I brought along the Springfield EMP, the Ruger LC9 conversion kit, the Kimber CDP Ultra and the Smith Sheild 9mm. He showed up with a Colt Officers model.

Shooting the Colt Officers model side by side with the Kimber we both shot the Kimber better in spite of the differences in weight 34 ounces empty for the Colt (40 oz loaded) vs. 25 ounces empty (31 oz loaded) for the Kimber. Both guns were tight the sights were good, light on the range was good same targets and distance and we fired several groups alternating between the guns. The 9 ounce difference in weight was enough that the Colt would have dragged your jacket down if it was in the pocket or if you slipped it in your back pocket it might pull the pocket down or open away from your body. The Kimber might be heavy enough to print as well but the difference in weight was notable. The Colt did not appear to recoil more lightly, or to have less rotation than the Kimber in spite of the difference in weight and weight distribution. Maybe the spring was worn?

As I have a steel framed Springfield Champion that is about the same weight as the Colt and only a little larger, the lighter weight of the Kimber FEELS more concealed and carries easier and it seems to be more connected to the weight of the piece than the .~5" difference in barrel and grip length.

I also happen to have an alloy frame Para P12-45 that weighs 28 ounces empty. Adding in the extra ammo weight of a 12 round magazine it comes in at 37 ounces loaded. That's barely more than the Colt unloaded. I've known people who carry this gun in a shoulder holster day in and day out. They weren't trying to conceal it and I don't feel it is a great small carry gun partly because of the weight but even though the overall thickness of the gun is less than a 1/4" thicker than a single stack 1911 that extra thickness carries through from the middle of the grip panels across the front strap. Just like the Glock G30 I owned for a while it is pushing the envelope for a 'small' carry piece that you might be trying to conceal.

Dropping down to the alloy Sig P238 or the Ruger LC380 or LC9 the differences in weight and size to the Officer's sized 1911s are even more apparent but the difference between the alloy P238 and the poly Ruger LC are much less than the differences between the steel framed P238 and the alloy P238. The real differences between the two are in how the action works and how they feel to shoot.

Likewise the LC380 and the LC9 are for all intents and purpose the same gun except for the caliber. The differences are the barrel chamber, recoil spring and magazine. The slide difference are probably mostly the caliber marking on the side. There is a difference in the way they feel when you touch them off because of the difference in the power of the cartridge and because they are small enough that you notice.
Archer
2000 Shots
2000 Shots
 
Posts: 2933
Joined: 04 Feb 2014
Has thanked: 89 times
Been thanked: 409 times
My Rossi Choice: M92
Location: SoCal Loco

Re: Small handguns

Postby zippy » 17 Feb 2020 14

Been a firearms owner and concealed carrier for six years, and I've got a carry rotation of four handguns.
For woods walks or if bears are in the neighborhood, a 3" 686.
A CZ PCR is EDC.
A 9mm Shield is backup EDC.
An alloy P238 is for wardrobe restrictions.
The Shield and P238 both wear Hogue grip sleeves which make for better follow-up shots.

The PCR is EDC because I shoot it the best by a very wide margin, both in accuracy and follow-up round speed.
Because the action type of the PCR, notably a hammer-fired DA/SA, Short Reset, Decock/without safety has become my preference, if I were looking to shave some weight, I'd get the 2075 RAMI Decocker version.
User avatar
zippy
250 Shots
250 Shots
 
Posts: 411
Joined: 05 Mar 2015
Has thanked: 99 times
Been thanked: 100 times
My Rossi Choice: M92
Location: Upstate South Carolina

Re: Small handguns

Postby Archer » 17 Feb 2020 22

I am a huge fan of CZ handguns.
I have a 75B in 9mm with a .22LR Kadet unit, a 97B, a couple 52s.
I've probably sold a half dozen 75Bs in 9mm and .40 letting people try mine out.
I've fit at least two additional Kadet kits one to a 75 and another to a P1.
A friend has the PCR and it seems just about as fun to shoot as the full size 75. Both are point and shoot for me and you just KNOW the shot went where you aimed.
I have not as of yet gotten a RAMI, a PCR or P1.

I thought I wanted a RAMI when they were coming out but there were some teething problems at the time.
I think CZ fixed those issues pretty fast and I hear nothing bad about them over the past decade and a half or so. I handled one about a month ago and I might eventually get either the PCR or the RAMI.
One of my friends just put the P1 on his list of things to get.
Archer
2000 Shots
2000 Shots
 
Posts: 2933
Joined: 04 Feb 2014
Has thanked: 89 times
Been thanked: 409 times
My Rossi Choice: M92
Location: SoCal Loco

Re: Small handguns

Postby Arroyoshark » 18 Feb 2020 12

The CZ RAMI had escaped my attention. It is likely due to me being more of a wheelgun fellow. Have to say it is a very nice looking small piece, with concealable qualities, The action has quite a bit of appeal to me. Think I'd prefer a 9mm caliber to the snappy .40 S&W.

Think I recall speed reading that the CZ can hold up to 12-14 rds of 9mm, but only 1-1/4" wide.


RAMI_New_CZ-2075_Concealed_Carry_Featured_7-31-2019.jpg
You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.
When sitting down to clean a gun, the first step is to load another gun - Elmer Keith
User avatar
Arroyoshark
RR Riders
RR Riders
 
Posts: 174
Joined: 03 Sep 2012
Has thanked: 9 times
Been thanked: 52 times
My Rossi Choice: Revolver
Location: fin del sendero, New Mexico

Re: Small handguns

Postby zippy » 18 Feb 2020 17

Archer wrote:I thought I wanted a RAMI when they were coming out but there were some teething problems at the time.
I think CZ fixed those issues pretty fast and I hear nothing bad about them over the past decade and a half or so.

I think the "teething problems" you heard about was cracking in an early polymer framed version of the RAMI. CZ ended production of the polymer version in 2011 and the excellent alloy frame has been the only one they sell since then.

This is the decocker version, and they have a 10 round version for California.

Image

This review shows some side-by-side comparisons with the PCR and a full-size SP01.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sbp_-xsNP0k
User avatar
zippy
250 Shots
250 Shots
 
Posts: 411
Joined: 05 Mar 2015
Has thanked: 99 times
Been thanked: 100 times
My Rossi Choice: M92
Location: Upstate South Carolina

Next

Return to All Other Firearms

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 3 guests

  • Advertisement