Revolvers Superior for concealed carry?


November 10, 2006, 08:31 PM
I've noticed autoloaders similar in size to a snub-nosed revolver; generally donít have appreciably greater capacities. Most models also lack the power of a .38 special+P or .357. Compact .45's generally have a magazine capacity of 5-6+1in the pipe. I'm a little biased toward revolvers, partially since I prefer the idea of 6 powerful reliable shots, as opposed to a high capacity lower powered caliber. I like the aesthetics and reliability of revolvers, but I donít want to forgo the autoloader if they really are superior. For full size guns I think 10mm auto or .45ACP offers appreciable advantages. But for compact frames, I donít see the advantage of an autoloader.

I'm looking very seriously at Taurus's .357 snub nose. It weighs 28oz and has a 7 round cylinder. If you were choosing a concealed carry gun, would you prefer a sub nose or compact autoloader?

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Standing Wolf
November 10, 2006, 09:09 PM
If you were choosing a concealed carry gun, would you prefer a sub nose or compact autoloader?

I carry a snub-nosed .44 magnum some days, assorted snub-nosed .357 magnum other days.

That saidô, I've to admit my preference for magnum cartridges is just another prejudice. I thinks it makes sense to carry what you shoot well and personally like, and let it go at that. No shortage of theory, to be sure, but what do you just plain like?

November 10, 2006, 09:21 PM
This is always a fun one. Neither is superior. It all comes down to preference. I find the slim profile of an auto easier to conceal. For me width is the selling point. I can carry a Government or Commander size 1911 slightly easier than I can my M66 K Frame S&W. In a good holster the difference is negligible.

If you're of the mind to carry reloads auto, particulary single column, mags are easier to conceal than a revolver speed loader. True, you can carry a speed strip, but it isn't as fast as a speed load or mag change.

For pocket carry a J frame S&W (or similar Taurus) will almost disappear in a pocket holster in dress pants. Of course, the tiny pocket autos will too. I think the real advantage in an auto is something like an NAA Guardian, SeeCamp, or Kel-Tec P32/P3AT that can conceal in a holster and look like a wallet even in a jeans pocket. The little Kel-Tecs (Not P11) are also light enough to carry in neck holster.

Now that's my observations, and those apply to me, which is all good and well. The real question is, what are you most comfortable with? What do you shoot most quickly and accurately? There's plenty of good holsters and belts for all sorts of handguns and carry methods. Decide on the minimum caliber you're comfortable with see what you shoot well that fits it. In my case a KT P3AT is my everywhere gun. Other times I'll take six rounds of 38 or 357 in a S&W K frame, or 7 or 8 round of 45 in a 1911. I figure if I put the bullets where the need to go it won't much matter what I carry in those calibers, nor what type of pistol it came out of.

November 10, 2006, 10:27 PM
I think the choice of revolver or semi-auto should be determined by what best fits your requirements for a concealed carry gun. Operative key word here being "concealed".

If you cannot properly conceal the gun under the circumstances in which you must, then that gun is not appropriate for the task regardless of the type. If you would rather carry a revolver, but cannot properly conceal it for whatever reason, then it's not the right tool for the job.

I ran into this situation myself recently. I stopped by a local gun shop to try out different combinations of compact handguns and holsters. I went in with the intent of determining how to best conceal a snub-nosed revolver under an untucked T-shirt. It turned out that I could not make it work. The guns would either bulge or print in a very noticable manner. Tried out a Glock 26 and a Bersa 380 in a IWB holster in the crossdraw position and it disappeared right under the T-shirt with no issue. Now you see it, now you don't. For that application, for me, the snub was not the answer.


November 11, 2006, 12:43 AM
Autoloaders are flatter - which is probably the most important factor in concealment for me. I carry a SP 101 plenty, but, for instance, you can get a flatter 9mm with 7 shots, which is pretty nice.

November 11, 2006, 12:47 AM
FWIW, my 1991A1 Compact (Officer's ACP) is 7+1 using a CM flush mag, all rolled up into a superbly concealable package that exceeds even the already superbly concealable government 1911.

If revolvers are your preference and is what works best for you, by all means use them.

But smaller 1911's at least aren't limited to only 5-6 +1 by any means.


November 11, 2006, 01:24 AM
So many factors to consider. I have been shooting for 17 years. I liked auto loaders first. But, the revolvers just fit for me. When I had autos I did not carry them much but, for the last 6 years a SP101 .357 mag 5 shot leaves the house with me every day.

Revos just work well for me. But, you have to find what works for you.

November 11, 2006, 01:34 AM
I like the fact that hammerless revolvers can be shot from a pocket or purse and can carry more punch as mentioned and autos are slimmer. If you live in a state that allows carry both.

A seven shot snub won't do well for concealment compared to a five shot.

November 11, 2006, 01:57 AM
Use whatever you know, trust, and can make work for you.

I'm persuaded that conventially carried handgun calibers are marginally effective at best. All of them.

Get the hardware package that works for you, learn it, and then work on the software.

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