Need advice for carry pistol


December 26, 2002, 10:06 PM

I got my carry permit last year, and I've been searching for the best carry gun and method for me. I'm short (5'8") and slight of build, except for my middle-aged belly. My normal attire consists of slacks and a tucked-in oxford-style shirt. I occasionally wear blue jeans. I usually carry a Kel-tec P32 in a wallet holster. I can carry my Makarov in a belly-bend if I wear an un-tucked sweatshirt or sweater. I can ALMOST use this gun/method with a tucked-in oxford shirt, but not quite. It prints a bit, especially the butt. Since my belly-band doesn't have a true holster to protect the trigger, I gain peace of mind with the Makarov's safety/decocker. The trigger cannot be pulled without first disengaging the safety/decocker.

So here's the question:

What firearms are available that meet the following criteria?

1) Smaller and slimmer than the Makarov. A pistol with a butt that protrudes less is especially desirable.

2) At least .380 ACP, preferably 9mm.

3) Functional relaibility equal to my Makorov (100%).

4) DA/SA with a saftey that prevents the trigger from being pulled.

5) Is not a FEG PA-63 (I have one and its a Jam-o-matic. I also don't care for the upside-down safety.)

Thank you in advance for your advice.

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December 26, 2002, 11:04 PM
Well, right up until we got to the part where you said "safety", I was all ready to say "Kahr MK-9, PM-9 or NAA Guardian .380".

The safety makes it rough... hmmm... Walther PPK? Smith CS-9?

December 26, 2002, 11:12 PM
Can you provide any more details on the CS9?

December 26, 2002, 11:17 PM
It's a slightly smaller 3913.

See here ( :)

December 26, 2002, 11:18 PM
Right Tamara and the SA/DA left out the super slim STI LS-9 and LS-40. That leaves us with the S&W line, Beretta 9000, Taurus .380, and a couple of CZ's. my choice would be the compact version of the CZ-75, but its' grip may be thicker than a Mak.

December 26, 2002, 11:21 PM
The 9000 is kinda porky, too.

This dude is tough to shop for, huh? ;)

Texas Bob
December 26, 2002, 11:21 PM
Try a pair of the "dockers" dress slacks with pleats in front. In some of my pants a Kahr P9 will ride without printing, in other dockers I use a kramer pocket holster for my airweight bodyguard. Try to find a local idpa club in your area and find out if the have BUG (back up gun) side matches. If you go I've found many members will show you how the ccw in all different modes of carry and you can "brouse" better than at a gunstore. Hope this helps.:)

Col. Mustard
December 26, 2002, 11:22 PM
Originally posted by SkunkApe
Can you provide any more details on the CS9?

Check it out on the Smith & Wesson site (

December 26, 2002, 11:25 PM
Thanks for all the info guys, I do appreciate it.

December 26, 2002, 11:34 PM
Recommend a pocket holster for any pocket carry.

Even if you have to make your own to suit.

Keeps the gun consistantly oriented and keeps pocket trash and nelphs out of the gun's works.


December 26, 2002, 11:42 PM
Ok...first post..."HI GANG"..anyway...

You ARE a tough one...the CS is as close as your gonna get..the PA63's upside down safety is a decocker and a safety (just not hammer back)....the CS's works the same way.

IMO, the Kahr is the best choice...its trigger is sweet enough to make DAO a nice trigger style..especially the Elite style...and its got have to go through the long pull and its got a FPB..but of course not manual safeties.

You can get a PT1** Taurus....DAO and manual safety...but Id take the Kahr question.

I know of no gun that really fits your bill.......

No CZ's fit your requirements..the CZ83 is the smallest and is nearly as large as the Compacts are...and its way bigger than you want...I hide my PCR as well as any gun hides IWB...small enough for me.
The Kahr/CS are your smallest choices in a larger caliber in a CCW Id carry.........
Good luck....Shoot well

December 27, 2002, 04:31 AM
-CZ 100. It may not be smaller overall than the Mak but being polymer it is quite light and it is very thin. It can be had in 9mm or .40S&W. Then you get CZ quality that is very good.

-Bersa Thunder. It is only a .380 but it is very reliable, well made, accurate (the fixed barrel tends to help with that) and inexpensive (I paid $215 for mine and I live in MD where our guns are always overpriced).

-J-frame revolver or Taurus 85/605 (J-frame equivelent). Nice revolvers, in Titanium or Scandium they are quite light (11 oz .357mag from S&W or a more manageable 17oz aluminum .38 from Taurus). No safety like all revolvers but the DA pull is heavy enough that shouldn't be an issue and as a revolver it is very simply which can be a safety feature itself. I'm not sure if it is slimmer than the Mak but the butt (at least with some grip types) is very short.

I too would have said a Kahr except for your desire for a safety. Do some soul searching to see if that is truely needed because otherwise a Kahr sounds perfect for you.

December 27, 2002, 10:36 AM
The Kahr has two problems for him. He not only wants a safety, but a conventional DA/SA trigger. The Kahr is considered DAO like a Glock.

December 27, 2002, 10:50 AM
The CS9 I shot recently is a buddy's off duty gun. I liked the way it shot, not really happy w/ the feel of the grip. That has been one of my concerns re: S&W semi autos...the grip & the other being the magazine disconnect.
But, if your comfortable w/ that grip, it is a nice little shooter ;)

December 27, 2002, 12:58 PM
Originally posted by Jeff OTMG
The Kahr has two problems for him. He not only wants a safety, but a conventional DA/SA trigger. The Kahr is considered DAO like a Glock.

The Glock is not considered a DAO, though. It's a different bird -- "safe action" is their term for it, but anyway you look at it's not a DAO.

On the other hand, the Kahr is like the Glock in that it won't re-strike if you pull the trigger again (which is implied by DAO to me -- a real double-action will do that).

December 27, 2002, 04:17 PM
Except for #4 I think, Colt Mustang.

December 28, 2002, 04:26 AM
True, correctly both are striker fired guns since neither even has a hammer. Not truely DA, but not at all SA. When LE agencies specify a DA first shot, they will sometimes allow the Glock to qualify due to the long stroke of the trigger. Even the S&W DAO must be cocked to allow the trigger to be pulled, just like the Kahr and Glock.

December 28, 2002, 10:26 AM
Take a look at H&K compact line in 9mm or 357sig calibers in thier variant #1 models.


December 28, 2002, 12:35 PM
A Beretta 9000fs in IWB and it doesn't print and I'm fat so you might want to look at one of those.

s&w 24
December 28, 2002, 01:38 PM
If you could live with a SA weapon Detonics combat master is great

December 28, 2002, 01:48 PM
Tamara and Sam right
'safety' stumped me too

I'm thinking holster/ belt has to be good -regardless of firearm. Tried a 'tuckable IWB" ?

I have used a Keltec P-11 wearing kahki's and oxford shirt. Being right handed I slipped into the 2200-2300 position under the shirt, with out a holster.

So I played with having heavy material sewn into trousers at this position, clip on holster, thin frame gun and yeah, blouse the shirt.

Tried this with BHP, P-11, J frames, works, and accessible when driving. Pleats, maybe a bit larger waist size, shirt size--gonna fine tune this for summer myself. Old hosters in discard bin cheap to play and alter with.

Dave R
December 28, 2002, 02:16 PM
I believe both the Colt Mustang and the Bersa Thunder will meet all your criteria.

I have an FEG APK-MkII, which is like a Bersa Thunder, only heavier. Its a very nice pistol. Surprisingly accurate. I have handled and shot a buddy's Bersa, and found it equally accurate, more ergonomic, and lighter. Altogether, a nice carry piece.

December 28, 2002, 03:12 PM
I'm not going to be much help. But, what I do is carry my Beretta 9000 in my vehicle. When I am carrying on my person, I have my Beretta Tomcat in my back pocket or in a jacket or vest pocket.
I know, I know its a pop gun. But when in close proximity of a BG it will serve it's purpose better than a shrug of the shoulders and a nervous grin.

December 28, 2002, 04:14 PM
I second the vote for the S&W Chief's Special 9mm auto as the best bet to meet your specs.

December 28, 2002, 07:07 PM
Thanks, guys, for all your responses. I'm leaning toward's the Smith CS9. I've got time, as I'm still recovering financially from Christmas.

December 28, 2002, 07:39 PM
I'd feel perfectly well armed for 99% of everything with a Makarov and plenty of practice but for a bit more power, I'd strongly recommend the Kahr with a suitable holster that covered the trigger. I know that with CCW comes great responsibility but I cannot imagine a responsible and well-trained person having a ND with a Kahr.

December 28, 2002, 08:02 PM
SIG P239

It's tha same sive as all of the other weapons mentioned plus you can choose from 9mm, 40S&W, and 357 Sig.

December 28, 2002, 09:01 PM
I'd have to say Bersa. Its about the only thing I can think of that meets the size and safety requirements.

December 28, 2002, 09:25 PM
There is nothing wrong with Pistolet Makarova. You just need a good holster for it!!!

Dillon makes an excellent holster for the Makarov called "The Master".

"Master" Blk, Makarov Holster 10647 45.95

December 28, 2002, 10:52 PM
How much bigger is the Bersa Thunder 9mm than the .380?


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