Steel-frame compact carry options? Getting aggravated...


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X-JaVeN-X
June 3, 2011, 06:17 PM
Ok...so I'm looking to purchase another handgun specifically for concealed carry. It needs to be concealable with a t-shirt and shorts as the summers here in NC are too hot to wear more than that...even that is too much most of the time...lol.

ANYWAY, I had pretty much set my heart on getting a p238 in the equinox finish, but then researched myself out of carrying a .380 caliber handgun for SD as there seems to be a good majority of folks saying that is too small and that 9mm or .40S&W is the minimum, so with that said, I've been looking for a 9mm or .40S&W for carry. I'm hoping you guys can help me out given the below requirements for my picky taste.

1) Size: I'm thinking the overall length needs to be under 7". I think I can pull that off. Weight is not really an issue to me.
2) Metal Frame: I really just am not a fan of polymer framed guns and that seems to be the direction where all the manufacturers are heading.
3)Caliber: Really looking for either 9mm or .40S&W, but will settle for .45 acp if necessary, but would really prefer 9mm for price of ammo.
4) Price: I really don't want to spend more than $800 (would prefer it to be closer to $600, but will go a little higher for the right gun)
5) Optional preferences: I'd much rather have something I can carry cocked and locked (which is why I really liked the p238 as I just prefer 1911 style controls but the .380 caliber just scared me off). I also prefer the stainless/nickel look over all black and I really don't but will settle for all-black as long as it's a metal-frame.
6) Quality: Obviously this needs to be a reliable gun as it's going to be for SD.
7) New: I don't like buying used handguns...just a preference, but that's just me....and this is where some of my frustration is coming in. I've found a few guns that are close to what I'm looking for but they have been discontinued and I don't know any current production guns that fit.

An example of what I like would be the S&W 3913 tsw. So, what's out there in current production that may be similar to the 3913? Anything?

Pic of 3913 tsw for reference of essentially what I'm looking for but current production
http://www.gunshopfinder.com/smithandwesson/model3913tsw.jpg

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xr1200
June 3, 2011, 06:54 PM
There is no all steel or all metal gun that you can carry comfortably in shorts during he summer. Even a gun like the 238 which has some problems, that made ppl wish they never bought them, or a ppk 380 is to heavy. You really to go with either a sw 380 body guard, or ruger lcp 380 to get the weight down for a simple in the pants pocket carry 380.

It takes some getting used to the small plastic 380's but once you shoot them and carry them you will be convinced. I started with a keltec 380 that was given me as it had a bad trigger spring, after fixing it and shooting it I was really surprized at how accurate the little plastic toy actually was, it shot tighter groups then even my browning hi power at 7-15 yrds.

I currently carry the SW 380 body guard with the laser and will swear by it and for $369 its a great deal.

G27RR
June 3, 2011, 06:56 PM
All steel, new, close to $600 is going to be tricky. Can it have an aluminum frame like some 3" 1911s?

If you could go $900 and like 1911 style, look at this 9mm.
http://stiguns.com/guns/LS/LS.php

X-JaVeN-X
June 3, 2011, 07:02 PM
yep...aluminum frame is ok...I should have clarified that a bit better.

harmon rabb
June 3, 2011, 07:12 PM
how about some of the metal frame kahr's? if you want true summer comfort, you're probably not going to enjoy a compact 1911 of any sort, so why not a kahr k9 or mk9? if i'm getting the model right, the mk9 is the pm9 but with a metal frame, so it's very very compact.

harmon rabb
June 3, 2011, 07:14 PM
oh, wait, i see you want to carry condition 1. well... you're probably limited to 1911's then. RIA makes an officer's frame 1911 that's under $500.

although, imo, if you want a carry 1911 for the summer, save the money and buy the best -- get a springfield emp. yeah you'll pay at least $1k, but it's worth every penny, and you have your choice of 40 or 9.

modifiedbrowning
June 3, 2011, 07:15 PM
CZ 75 Compact(Steel frame),PCR (aluminum) P01 (aluminum),Rami (aluminum)
Bersa Thunder 9 Ultracompact(aluminum)

NG VI
June 3, 2011, 07:23 PM
Check out all the compact CZs. And forget about pocket carry, unless you won't wear shorts with belt loops. IWB all the way.

jon86
June 3, 2011, 07:35 PM
Have you looked at the Kahr K9 or MK9? I think they make a bigger one too, the T9.

X-JaVeN-X
June 3, 2011, 07:37 PM
Most of my shorts are baggy cargo shorts and always wear a belt. I'm most likely going to have to go with a IWB holster of some sort for carrying any pistols of the size I'm looking at. I took a look at the CZ site (I've never owned or fired anything by CZ) and I do like the looks of the 2075 RAMI (especially the BD). I know it's not the controls I'm looking for. How do you guys feel about that gun for carry as far as reliability and carrying one in the chamber?

Weevil
June 3, 2011, 08:02 PM
Not a huge Taurus fan but when I was looking at options for a new CCW one of the guns that caught my attention was the PT911.


http://www.budsgunshop.com/catalog/images/D11/31/31876.jpg


Alloy frame 9mm and most of the reviews I seen were positive.

I wound up going with a Glock but the PT911 has stuck in my head as a gun to keep an eye out for.

X-JaVeN-X
June 3, 2011, 08:25 PM
Yea...I looked at the pt911 but I don't think it's in production anymore and everything I read said the accuracy was marginal at best.

I'm3rd
June 3, 2011, 08:33 PM
Now that my state allows open carry I'm considering buying a compact .45acp. I like the old .45 round but my gvmt model is too big and heavy for all day carry. I've been looking at a Bersa .45 with chrome slide at a LGS for $419.95. It's compact, all metal, and reasonably lightweight, and looks OK if looks matter to you. But I don't know anything about Bersa build quality, reliability, or warranty service. For the price difference between it and the price you stated there are no doubt some compromises to be made for the lower Bersa price, but you might want to take a look and see if it's something you might accept. It also comes in 9mm if you prefer that round.

7mmb
June 3, 2011, 09:50 PM
EAA Witness compact. All steel, available in four serious calibers, can be carried cocked and locked and real world prices are under $500 out the door.
http://www.galleryofguns.com/genie/default.aspx?pg=list&mfg=European+American+Armory&mdlno=Tanfoglio+Witness+Compact

bottom shelf
June 3, 2011, 10:57 PM
I carried the Kahr MK9 for a year or so, and now carry the MK40. I don't care for polymer for CCW either. PM me what part of NC you are in. If we're close, perhaps a trip to the range is in order.

Nushif
June 3, 2011, 11:27 PM
Another vote for the Taurus PT911. It's my current carry piece and no matter how much I want to carry my Beretta ... With the Taurus here there's simply no good reason to do so.

No malfunction yet through close to 1k rounds and it has a nice, short and crisp single action trigger with the DA/SA option thrown in.

Edit:
As for the negative reviews. When have you ever seen a Taurus product receive anything other than marginal ratings on principle? (From anyone other than owners, that is?)

CZ223
June 3, 2011, 11:37 PM
I carry a Tac Pro II all day every day with shorts and a light shirt in the Summer.

X-JaVeN-X
June 4, 2011, 12:21 AM
I really like the looks of that EAA Witness Steel Compact in 9mm. Any of you guys have personal experience with a Witness?

armoredman
June 4, 2011, 01:21 AM
CZ Compact, 9mm 14 round steel frame with standard safety you can carry cocked and locked, overall length 7.2 inches. The alloy framed PCR and P-01s are fantastic CCW guns, but they are decocker only at this time. Current MSRP on the Compact is $518, probably find it cheaper. High Noon Holsters carries some great holsters.

Georgia1911
June 4, 2011, 01:33 AM
Commander size 1911 is a little longer than your spec and the EAA you asked about, but otherwise fits. Colt LTW Commander has alloy frame and is 7.75". Little lighter than the EAA. Defender, New Agent or similar 3" 1911s are smaller, but give up accuracy, velocity and maybe reliability (1911s less than 4" barrel are generally believed to be iffy). Kimber Tac Ultra fits your specs, but Kimber isn't what it used to be, at least based on recent reports, and is way over your budget.

exavid
June 4, 2011, 01:38 AM
I have a Taurus 740 slim that's a great carry gun. Small, thin and .40S&W. It's a surprisingly accurate pistol too. So far mine's fired almost 500 rounds without a single problem. In cold or jacket weather I like my Taurus 24/7 PRO .45acp with it's 12 rounds, but in summer it's the little LCP that goes with me. It shoots accurately, I can put a magazine in a 9" plate at 50 feet. It's so small and light you can just about forget you have it with you. If seven shots of alternating 100gr round nose and 95gr XTP won't do the job you probably need a shotgun anyway. True none of those pistols are all steel but in this day and age I can't see a reason to carry a heavy pistol when these plastic wonders are available and well proven.

snooperman
June 4, 2011, 08:55 AM
As I want one too. Realistically , you are looking at a 380 .

bikerdoc
June 4, 2011, 09:12 AM
For what it is worth.

OP I am just up the road on the Va NC line, hot summers- yes!!!!

I carry a CZ 75 compact, IWB or 357 snub IWB.

Zerodefect
June 4, 2011, 10:45 AM
The Kahr MK9 in a Crossbreed Supertuck at 4-6 oclock should do the trick.

Use a good belt. I like the Leather belts with Kydexin them. I use a leather hole punch to get them fit just right. The Ares instructors belts are really good as well for longer carry days.

Stick to a dark t-shirt. I like the black Nike Dryfit type shirts and I'll toss a MountainHardware button shirt (Canyon?) over top at night. The Dry fit polyester athletic type shirts keep me cool despite the fact that they're black.

A CCO style 1911 may also work for you.




You may be better off just getting over the "metal" bit unless your recoil sensitive. The Kahr PM9 and P380 are great summer CCW's.

Blue68f100
June 4, 2011, 02:40 PM
The Kimber Ultra Carry II will fit your needs in 45 or 9mm. The base price starts around $800. But I prefer the SS slide which adds another $100 to the cost. The Ultra use a dual recoil spring setup which works good for taming the recoil. Takes down is a little different but there is a company that has made a special tool to make it a snap for $15. I have a SS TLE w/CT on the way.

http://www.kimberamerica.com/1911/ultra-carry-ii

X-JaVeN-X
June 4, 2011, 05:02 PM
^^I've lost all faith in Kimber. I've personally had too much trouble with them and they been everything except helpful in the customer service department...and for the money their products cost...that's just unacceptable to me and they won't get anymore business from me.

Right now, I'm leaning towards the witness steel or (if I can find one) the taurus pt911 or pt940 in the stainless finish. As mentioned above...most people that actually own the gun like it with the exception of accuracy at longer ranges which this being a carry pistol for SD...I'm not too worried about making a headshot at 25 yards. Most of the negative on the gun seems to be he-said/she-said group-think regurgitation. I've don't own a Taurus or EAA so I'm always up for trying something new. If anyone has any other suggestions...let me hear'em.

On a side note...if anybody knows where to find the taurus pt911 or pt940 in the stainless finish with rosewood grips and gold accent pieces let me know. They are both discontinued according to taurususa.com but I've seen several of the other finishes floating around for sale new...just not any with the finish I'm looking for (naturally).

19-3Ben
June 4, 2011, 07:53 PM
There is no all steel or all metal gun that you can carry comfortably in shorts during he summer.

False.

My Kahr K40 is a dream to carry with shorts, and just a t-shirt to cover it. It's reliable, accurate, and beautifully made. Recoil is a tad snappy, but completely tolerable. Much better than the S&W 642 that I bought and immediately sold.

CZ57
June 4, 2011, 08:06 PM
What about the CZ Rami? It's all metal and carries cocked and locked.;)

7mmb
June 4, 2011, 10:28 PM
I don't have experience with the compact but I do have Elite Matches in 9mm and 45. The 2005 and newer frames are all large frames and the 9mm has had feeding problems due to the larger 45 frame. My 9mm with the original magazine had FTFs (stovepipes) when loaded over 10 rounds. The new Mec Gar mags solved this problem. The 45 has been flawless. The new compacts are built on the large frame. If you get Mec Gar mags it should be fine in 9mm, and I think that new EAA mags are made by Mec Gar. I would have no reservations at all with the compact in 45 though.

WardenWolf
June 4, 2011, 11:07 PM
Try a Polish P-64 in 9x18 Makarov. Loaded it's about 1.5 pounds. There's lots of small solid steel ComBloc pistols, and they're all very accurate and completely reliable.

Jeb21
June 4, 2011, 11:32 PM
Sig 239 is an awsome weapon. It comes in either 9mm or 40 cal. I think it will fit the bill.

orionengnr
June 4, 2011, 11:36 PM
There is no all steel or all metal gun that you can carry comfortably in shorts during he (sic) summer.
Really? Because I've been carrying a steel 4" Kimber 1911 in my string-waist shorts since we declared 'summer" here in Texas...about two months ago.
I've lost all faith in Kimber. I've personally had too much trouble with them and they been everything except helpful in the customer service department...and for the money their products cost...that's just unacceptable to me and they won't get anymore business from me.
Your post count is showing...and your credibility is wanting.

The 1911 on my hip is a Kimber Pro Eclipse. I have been shooting it at the range weekly for the last three years, and at steel plate matches for the last year or two. Probably several thousand rounds through it in the last couple years. I have owned 25 or so 1911s in the last 25 years, and the Kimber is the one pistol I would bet my life on.

Actually, I do...as I carry it daily and shoot it weekly.

Thompsoncustom
June 4, 2011, 11:54 PM
If I was going to get a compact I would probably get a cz remi or the remi BD(thumb safety vs decocker). I currently carry a cz 75b all year around with just a shirt and jeans nothing more unless its cold. But the CZ Remi is a 10+1 9mm or 7+1 40S&W and would be my choice for a compact or maybe a EAA witness but I hear good and bad stuff about them. Just my thoughts

MICHAEL T
June 5, 2011, 01:20 AM
Bersa 9mm 40 or 45 your choice. all under 500 DA/SA

http://bersachat.com

savit260
June 5, 2011, 06:24 AM
There is no all steel or all metal gun that you can carry comfortably in shorts during he summer. Even a gun like the 238 which has some problems, that made ppl wish they never bought them, or a ppk 380 is to heavy. You really to go with either a sw 380 body guard, or ruger lcp 380 to get the weight down for a simple in the pants pocket carry 380.

I don't own anything polymer and only one that has an aluminum frame. The rest are all steel, and SUBSTANTIALLY bigger and heavier than the plastic .380 micro class guns. Revolvers mostly. A PPK too heavy? Really? I have no problem carrying ANY of them in shorts with a T shirt for cover with a good IWB holster and good stiff belt. I have had an all steel Colt in my front pocket all day and night long. A good belt is what makes the difference IMO.

armoredman
June 5, 2011, 03:42 PM
There is no all steel or all metal gun that you can carry comfortably in shorts during he summer.
:) I don't wear shorts, even in AZ summers. No problem wearing belts and holsters.
Old saying; it's easy to tell the newcomers and visitors to AZ, as they are the ones with the beautiful cancer causing tans. We learned a long time ago, stay inside, in the AC. :)

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