Kel-Tec subcompact as BUG?


March 6, 2007, 02:12 AM
Does anyone carry a Kel-Tec as a BUG, or a pocket CCW?

What model is generally regarded as Kel-Tecs most reliable 9mm?

I know in general Kel-Tecs aren't too reliable, but I'm interested in the idea of a very small pistol as a BUG and like the price point of a Kel-Tec.

If you enjoyed reading about "Kel-Tec subcompact as BUG?" here in archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join today for the full version!
March 6, 2007, 02:43 AM
What model is generally regarded as Kel-Tecs most reliable 9mm?
Kel-Tec P-11

Ala Dan
March 6, 2007, 03:24 AM
Quote: by grizz

"I know in general that KEL-TEC's aren't too reliable".

What makes you think that? I have sold many, NONE has came back with
"issues" including reliability. I have read reports of the tiny P3AT being
not only RELIABLE, but ACCURATE enough to keep a magazine full inside
an 8" pie plate from 15 yards out~! ;) :D

So much so, that I recently bought a standard blue/black P3AT .380
myself; to carry on days when the HOT days of the souths summer
won't permit carrying my primary weapon.

March 6, 2007, 10:59 AM
I carry a P3at as a BUG and am very happy with it. I keep it loaded with +P HP's. The only problems I've ever had with it were ammo related (squib handloads), nothing to do with the gun.
And I can keep all my rounds in a pie plate at 15yds without any trouble.

March 6, 2007, 11:05 AM
For 9mm I'd stick with the P11 until all of the kinks are worked out of the PF9.

For pocket the P3AT would be the easiest to carry.

March 6, 2007, 07:23 PM
I really like my p3at in a Desantis Nemisis pocket holster. Great second gun. If I was to carry a .380 as a primary, I'd tote two of 'em.


March 6, 2007, 07:41 PM
I've got a P3at that I carry occasionally when circumstances forbid anything less discrete. What few reservations I have about it come from the ballistics of 380 out of that short barrel rather than problems with reliability. After replacing a faulty mag release spring right after I got it, my P3at has been problem free ever since.
I compensate for my distrust of the ballistics by practicing quick bursts of fire into the face of a standard sillohette target. I can empty that little beast into the head zone quickly and effectively out to about 10 yards. Not bad for a last ditch bug with no real sights to speak of. I figure if I can keep 6 rounds in the head of a target at the range, surely I can keep 5 of the 6 FMJs in the upper chest if required.
I have a problem with the P11. I had one decide to spontaneously disassemble itself while shooting. I don't crap on the line in general, but I don't want another one either.

March 6, 2007, 08:32 PM
I carried a p3at for two years, and have now "graduated" to a p11 in my front pocket. 12+1 rounds of 9mm. Some don't care for the looks of KT pistols, but I think mine is "purdy!"

March 6, 2007, 09:15 PM
I can hit a 25 yard bullseye target at 25 yard consistantly with my keltec p3at, and it's quite reliable. It took holding the thing loosely in one hand, halfway down the grip by one of my friends to get the thing to jam.

Safety First
March 7, 2007, 12:45 AM
I carry a P3AT in the hard chrome slide version in a front pocket holster by Graham. It's stoked with Gold Dot 90 grain JHP, and in my pocket . If Keltec will ever produce enough PF9's for my dealer to get one, I entend to look it over for a possible pocket bug. I am thinking it may be bigger than I want for a pocket bug, but would like to see one to make up my on mind.

March 7, 2007, 01:47 AM
I just bought a P-32 and I'm glad I did. I put 77 rounds through it the first range day and over 100 the next without a problem. Great little pistol.

March 7, 2007, 09:36 AM
I can hit a 25 yard bullseye target at 25 yard consistantly with my keltec p3at

Are you saying the Bull's eye or just the target?

March 7, 2007, 09:09 PM
i bought a p-11 a few years ago, and its a great gun, easy to carry, light, mine holds 12+1 in a flush fitting mag. not 1 problem at all.
i decided to buy a p-3at because i loved the p-11 so mutch, and wanted a bug.
i had a few f.t.e., and sent it to keltec to get worked... no questions asked, returned to me with a new barrel, and slide, and has went bang every time sence.

i just recently bought a plr-16... doubt i will be carrying that big gun, but lets face it, i think i am a keltec addicted.

March 7, 2007, 09:56 PM
Both have been extremely reliable. I think the P-11 can't be put into the "unreliable Kel-Tec" category. I know a ton of people who have them with zero issues. I haven't been able to get the thing to jam with a slew of different ammo and about 700 rounds down the tube. Kel-Tec has been around a while now and worked out the bugs years back in these 2 guns in all current production. The other smaller single stack 9mm was new last year and I would avoid it from what I have read.

Also notice a few gun shop owners have posted. No returns on anything is a good thing. I saw the backstrap/safety on a 1100.00 Kimber 1911 blow up in a guys hand at the range and cut it up (quality pattern fault in some line). He went home and I spent another hour shooting my 185.00 P-11.

March 7, 2007, 11:20 PM
Either a P-32 or a P3AT in my pocket all time. Just depends on which on needs some excerise .
Only had 1 returned to shop I use and that was a Gen 1 380 . KT fixed No other that I know of. KT's are relieable and accurate.

March 8, 2007, 09:53 AM
I like my P32 :)

March 8, 2007, 09:57 AM

.380, not 9mm though.

March 8, 2007, 10:26 AM
I bought a very rough example of a P-3AT. The former owner had put only a few rounds through it, termed it a "jam-o-matic" and sold it to me for a song along with some ammo.

I did a pretty serious "fluff n' buff (", got rid of the Silver Bear ammo he gave me (P-3AT chambers are tight and don't tend to play well with steel cased ammo) and it has run like a dream since.

I have a minimum requirement of 200 rounds with zero failures before I'll consider a gun a CCW candidate. This weekend sometime I plan to pass that point with this pistol and really I have no concern that it will pass.

My friend has a P-3AT that has worked fine from the get-go.

That's about all the input I can give on Kel-Tec's products.

March 8, 2007, 11:29 AM
The P3AT is Ok, it is what it is, an inexpensive .380 that is meant to be carried more than shot. It will serve well as a BUG.

Stay away from the P-40. It's a POS. Hard to fire, LONG DA trigger pull, harsh recoil. Jam-o-matic as well.

It's hit or miss with Kel-Tec's products. Some work well, some don't.

March 8, 2007, 11:48 AM
3ATs for over two years now. Never had a jam or any other malfunction. The price of a one round mag extension is well worth it. Gives one more finger support on the grip. I shoot Rem Golden Sabres in mine. I just drop mine in my front pocket and break up the outline with a hankie........It goes everywhere with me, that I can legally go.......chris3

March 8, 2007, 01:35 PM
For 9mm I'd stick with the P11 until all of the kinks are worked out of the PF9.

For pocket the P3AT would be the easiest to carry.


March 8, 2007, 04:22 PM
Many days my P-32 is my only carry! Love it!

March 8, 2007, 04:52 PM
my p32 has never been a problem to me . i never leave home without it . would not part with it.

March 14, 2007, 05:55 PM
I've had my P-11 for a few years now. The metal tab on the slide catch broke this weekend but thats not the strongest part in any gun. The good thing is that a call to KT will get me a new part no problem. Thier customer service is very good. I bought a P32 last weekend and I love it. Its sweet and so far 100% reliable. I think people who bash Keltec are not being fair. Mine have been very good.

March 15, 2007, 01:43 PM
My original criteria for a CCW was a 380 ACP or larger caliber, reliability, lightweight and double action only. It should be noted that cost was not a consideration. I finally decided on two handguns the Keltec P-3AT and the P-11 May of 2004. The 380 is sooooo light and as one poster stated you sometimes forget it’s there. I did want a 9 Para as the 380 is better than your fists but I like a little more power. I usually carry the 380 in a DeSantis The Trickster pocket holster and for the P-11 a Bianchi 105 Minimalist holster. I wasn’t happy with any of the inside pants holsters I've tried. Originally the P-3AT had a occasional extraction problem. I sent it back to the factory they did a fix and it hasn’t missed a beat mechanically. I can cause an extraction due to limp wrist when firing? The P-11 has never failed. I try and shoot at least 50 rounds a month through them. Every once in a while I think I need something better and try my 4013, Hi Power and 1911 but I go back to the Kel Tec. Something I don’t understand is why the major manufacturers do not make a like gun like the Kel Tec’s. My experience with them has been excellent and I will bet my life on them. Manufacturer and high cost doesn’t always make it better. If I had a choice I’d whether fight a person using 1911 is he doesn’t know to use it effectively than a person with a 380 knows how use it.


March 15, 2007, 03:47 PM
I agree. I bought my P-11 jsut becuase it was cheap and I had heard good things about. It has become by far my favorite carry gun. Not a target piece but accurate, light, and reliable. I bought a p32 last weekend and fired them back to back at the same distance and the groups were almost identical. I would carry either with confidence.

March 15, 2007, 04:15 PM
I can hit a 25 yard bullseye target at 25 yard consistantly with my keltec p3at

Are you saying the Bull's eye or just the target?

The black.

March 15, 2007, 04:40 PM
Kel-Tec P-3AT at 15 yards. Single (left/strong) hand, unsupported.
Shot at my "combat" speed. (not super fast, but quick).
Target is printed on 8.5x11 sheet of paper

#4 was the flier off the page
#5 was the bullseye

I guess I'm sayin' that VARifleman shoots a P-3AT better than I do but I'm improving :D

March 15, 2007, 06:55 PM
That was very slow fire, not combat speed or anything of the sort.

Claude Clay
March 17, 2007, 04:11 PM (

March 18, 2007, 12:27 AM
P32 is everything gun. Sometimes primary, always, at least BUG.

If you enjoyed reading about "Kel-Tec subcompact as BUG?" here in archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join today for the full version!