Mini/Pocket 9mm Pistols for Concealed Carry

Published May 16, 2013 by
Filed under Carry, CCW, Equipment, Self Defense

I’ve been a fan of mini 9mm pistols for concealed carry since I purchased a Sccy CPX-1 in 2007. My history with the Sccy has been a little chequered, (it’s gone back to the shop three times), so I carry a Smith and Wesson Shield now. Even with that history, I’m still a big proponent of the combination of size and firepower that a sub-subcompact 9mm brings to the table, and they have the added value of having roughly the same manual of arms as their bigger cousins, the 9mm service pistol. Which is good, because despite their popularity, these are not good guns for a beginning shooter: Their small size means they have more recoil and kick then bigger 9mm’s, and that small size also equates to a shorter sight radius, making longer shots a bit tougher.

Here’s a semi-complete roundup of all the mini/pocket 9mm’s out there, set up so you can quickly compare features such as price and weight against each other gun. Scroll to the left to see all the columns.

[table id=1 /]

(1) Assuming 0.441 ounces for each 124gr 9mm cartridge and .355 ounces for each .380 100gr cartridge
(2) Concealablity Index =
( 0.75(Length) x Height x 1.25(Width) x 1.5(Loaded Weight) )/100
(3) Firepower Index = ( Energy In ft/lbs x bullet weight in grains  x Capacity)/100. 124gr for 9mm’s, 95gr for .380.
(4) A full can of soda weighs about 13.76 ounces
* I couldn’t find a review for the AMT Backup in 9mm. If you know of one, leave it in the comments
IWB = Inside the Waistband holster. OWB = Outside the Waistband Holster.
SAO – Singe Action Only. DAO – Double Action Only. Striker – Striker fired. SA/DA  = You guessed it, both Single Action AND Double Action, depending on how you use it.
Long, boring description of what this means over here, but for now, just think SA = better, smoother trigger but needs a safety, DA/Striker = kinda sorta like a revolver. -ish. 

I added in other pistols like the the Glock 26, which we don’t often think as part of the “mini 9mm” group but is right in the middle of the pack when it comes to size, weight and firepower, and other guns like the Kel-Tec P3AT and the Glock 19 to compare the pocket 9mm’s to their smaller and larger siblings. And why the CZ P07? Because I like CZ’s, that’s why! (And it’s also an occasional carry gun for me as well). 

The Firepower/Concealability Indexes were just my way of quantifying how easy any particular gun is to carry and how much oomph it brings to the party. If you like the idea or think it should be tweaked a bit, let me know in the comments. 

And why weight in soda cans? Because I suck at judging weights, that’s why. In my mind, there’s not heavy, heavy and “lift with the legs, not with the back.” But a can of soda? I know how heavy that is. Imagine carrying around two full cans of soda on one side of your belt all day long (like a Glock 19), and you’ll know why pocket 9mm guns are so popular for concealed carry.


Kevin’s Note: My choice of all those is the Smith And Wesson Shield, although if CZ made something in this size, I’d probably buy that instead. I like the Shield for its combination of size, capacity, ergonomics and trigger: It’s not the smallest, thinnest, lightest or least expensive, but it covers all of those bases very well. 

Jaci’s Note: Once I made the decision to purchase a carry gun, I spent a few months handling and shooting several pocket/CCW style pistols. The LC9 impressed me with its slim form, light weight and long, but smooth trigger pull. During my search for a carry pistol, I was able to shoot the LC9 on a back up gun stage at a practical pistol match. It was so easy for me to operate, I was instantly sold. One of my favorite features of the LC9 is the extended magazine floorplate. I can get a solid grip on it with my right hand, which helps me shoot it more confidently and accurately.

Comments

7 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Josh // May 17, 2013 at 8:58 PM

    No Boberg? They’re officially on the market, have been for a year now, they should be included! http://www.bobergarms.com/#!products/c6ae

  • 2 KevinC // May 18, 2013 at 12:15 PM

    I thought about the Boberg, and thought about it, and looked at the stats and then the price, and realized it’s $1200+ price tag would skew things so badly for the other guns for no real benefit otherwise. It’s an interesting gun, but given that it chokes on some common ammo, it’s even more of an expert’s gun than most pocket 9mm’s are.

  • 3 Brian // May 18, 2013 at 3:20 AM

    I think you should definitely include the Rohrbaugh R9 in there!
    http://www.rohrbaughfirearms.com/

  • 4 Robert McKeown // May 18, 2013 at 1:00 PM

    I’m surprised that the Springfield XD’s aren’t listed. Excellent firearms. I traded a Glock for one.

  • 5 KevinC // May 18, 2013 at 1:26 PM

    My co-bloggers both shoot XD’s and love ’em. When the XD-S 9mm is available, it’ll go on the list.

  • 6 Why Online Firearms Product Reviews Suck - Misfires And Light Strikes // Jun 11, 2013 at 7:18 AM

    […] much on the person using it. Something like this is a good start, as is (humblebrag) the revisited mini 9mm comparison I did here, but what’s needed is something like Top Gear’s Power Lap board, where an independent […]

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