KelTec/Kahr owner comments


March 30, 2004, 11:13 AM
I'm heading to the Silverado Gun Show in Frederick this weekend looking to sell my turkey gun and start the buying of either a KelTec or a Kahr. 9mm is the caliber of choice. I know that both are very popular and would like comments from THR owners. Good or bad, it doesn't matter. Thanks, I hope to see other High Roaders there.

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March 30, 2004, 11:35 AM
For what it's worth....I'm on my second Kel-tec P11...wish I had never traded off the first one. I love them. Mine have been excellent! No FTF,FTE or anything. Went bang everytime I pulled the trigger. Accurate enough for combat use also. Never had a Kahr...couldn't see giving my money to the Mooneys.

March 30, 2004, 11:43 AM
I have a Kel-Tec P11(9mm) and I really like it. It conceals well which is why I got it. I don't like the little Kel-tec .32 or .380's they seem too little.
I can drop my P11 in my jeans pocket or wear it tucked IWB with no printing. The trigger pull is long and heavy but I understand this can be adjusted. The long heavy pull makes it a harder to keep on target at range distances but for personal protection the accuracy is good. I had some problem when I first got it with the mag rattling when having more than 5 or 6 rounds loaded but I got some info from here(THR) about squeezing the empty mag and that corrected it. Can't beat the price on Kel-tec.
No experience with Kahrs

March 30, 2004, 11:48 AM
I've owned five P32s, but never any P11s though Ive shot two of them. Very light weight guns but they seem thicker that I would personally want to carry in a pocket. Had very good luck with the P32s though.

I owned one Kahr... a P9 Covert. I bought it used from a THR member so there is a chance that he might have sent it back to the factory but my own experience has been 100% positive with this gun. And the larger TP9 is on my very short list of guns to buy and is without a doubt the gun I'd buy if I wanted a single stack plastic 9mm. I carried mine IWB in one of two High Noon Holsters and didn't really have a desire to carry it in a pocket.

I've also shot various other Kahrs and have had a very favorable experience with the company in general but I will admit, I don't think I've ever shot any of the earliest poly guns which are supposed to be the most trouble. The PM9/MK9 seem to be the most troublesome of the current lot and I would personally probably stay away from those. And again, as I would carry the gun IWB, a .5" shorter barrel isn't going to make it any easier to carry than the seemingly more reliable longer barrel Kahrs.

Between the Kahrs and the KelTec, if I was set on carrying in a pocket, I'd look pretty heavily into the P11 and plan on at least one trip back to the factory. If I was planning on IWB carry, I'd buy a Kahr with a 3.5" or 4" barrel over the KelTec without hesitation.

March 30, 2004, 11:51 AM
I've got a Kahr K-40 Elite that I use as my summer carry gun, sometimes strong side, somethings SOB. It's a bit heavy for it's size due to the stainless slide, but that does help soak up the recoil.

Only problem I've had is it's annoying tendency to put a dent in the case lip (making it kind of D-shaped. Never caused a feed or ejection failure, but I'm wary of reloading them.

March 30, 2004, 12:04 PM
The only Kel-tec I own is a P32 in which I'm perfectly content with. My main CCW pistol is an early model K9. The K9 is absolute perfection for CCW as far as I'm concerned. The craftsmanship (fit and finish) on my particular K9 proves to me that Kahr was quite concerned with creating an icon of quality to represent their company, a pistol which has received countless accolades since its debut.
If I were to carefully critique this pistol, I would be hard pressed to find any faults and I am P-I-C-K-Y... a quick search of my posts here and at TFL will certainly yield a number of rants concerning some of my other firearms.

Though they generally fit the same niche, the P11 and K9 are in two separate categories. The P11 is far more affordable and offers an excellent value, but comparing the P11 to the K9 is akin to comparing a Chevy to a Lexus as far as I'm concerned. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with either, but is it a level comparison?

Just my (requested) opinion….

March 30, 2004, 02:35 PM
I recently fell in love with an MK9

I have never had these types of feelings for a Keltec.:D

March 30, 2004, 03:11 PM
In my estimation you are comparing a Mercedes (Kahr) to a Hyundai (Kel-Tec). Both will get you where you want to go but the Kahr is much better quality.

March 30, 2004, 03:25 PM
I owned a p-11 for about a year.

It was mechanically very reliable through about 300 rounds or so.

Extremely unpleasant to shoot; horrible trigger pull, excessive perceived recoil.

Those aspects translated into terrible practical accuracy, even at very short (3 yd) range.

I sold it with no regrets - but a lot of THRers really like them, and they are impressive feats of engineering at a very reasonable price.

March 30, 2004, 04:38 PM
I own the Kel-Tec's steroid-laden alter-ego, the P40. The P40 is a bit of a bear to shoot, with recoil in excess of a S&W 640 shooting full-house 125gr .357 mags. The P40 can be a bit finicky & a drama queen...until you know what she likes. We have our issues ironed out. If I had to do it over again, I'd buy a Kel-Tec P11 in 9mm or the micro-sized polymer Khar in 9mm.

The KT P11 9mm is a much easier weapon to shoot than the KT P40.

I also own a KT P32, which has been a rock as far as reliability.

The KT may start off a with some drama, but will mellow out in the end. The Khar, given Khar aficianado reports, will be reliable. If you like tinkering, the KT is a better platform from which to start your tinkering, as it takes well to mild user gunsmithing.

The main thing I like about my KT P40 is that I have 10 rounds of .40S&W in a light package that is readily packable.

Bottom line: both will work for you. Find out which one's personality suits you.

March 30, 2004, 04:46 PM
Handle the P-11 and the Kahr MK9

If you feel better about one or the other then get it...simple as that..

Me I carry a P-11 in a pocket holster....I also carry a P3at or P-32...I like them very much:D

March 30, 2004, 05:09 PM
I own both, a P-11 and a Kahr K9. The P-11 goes bang every time I pull the trigger, but I can shoot circles around it with the Kahr.

These are truly apples and oranges. The trigger on the Kahr is as smooth as glass and felt recoil is much, much less with the Kahr. The P-11 trigger is very heavy, stacks and just has no feel and recoil with the P-11 is pretty heavy! The less felt recoil of the Kahr allows much faster follow up shots.

If you don't want to spend the money for the Kahr, the P-11 will protect you well, but not as well as the Kahr will. Of couse this is JMO!

By the way, I carry a P-3AT most of the time because of the hot climate I live in and the fact that while not having the power of a 9X19 I am able to shoot it very well and the trigger and mild recoil is good enough for fast follow up shots.

March 30, 2004, 05:21 PM
Kel-Tec P11.

Just never could get it to where I trusted it for my carry piece. Wanted it to carry when I couldn't carry my G-30. It would work great for 200 rds. Then it wouldn't work multiple times in the next 200 rds. Worked great next 200 rounds, no worky for next 200 rounds. I finally gave up.

Sold it and bought a Kahr PM9.
I love it.


Joe Demko
March 31, 2004, 08:46 AM
Have a P-11 and a P-32.

The P-32 required a couple trips back to the factory, but appears to be working properly now. In all areas except weight, I find it inferior to my NAA Guardian .32.

The P-11 has never had any mechanical function problems and has cycled any type of ammo that I stuffed in it. Mechanical accuracy is good. OTOH, it is far too thick to be what I would consider a pocket pistol. Add a pocket holster ( a necessity for pocket carry IMO) and it is even thicker. The trigger pull on my specimen lies somewhere between atrocious and horrible. It doesn't compare well at all to the DA pull on any of my revolvers or DA autoloaders. For the purpose for which the gun was designed, I can live with it as I am loathe to do anything that might compromise primer ignition.

March 31, 2004, 10:21 AM
from shooter58

"Never had a Kahr...couldn't see giving my money to the Mooneys."

I keep hearing this. I think if you indulge in that prejudice, then it is difficult to be credited with an intelligent opinon about the prejudice against gun ownership.

March 31, 2004, 11:08 AM
Have put around 200 rounds through it so far with no problems. Good shooting;)

March 31, 2004, 11:11 AM
The small Kahr PM9 would be the one to compare to the KelTec P11.

I've owned two P11s.
Sold them both, because I couldn't get used to the trigger.
Also felt they were too thick for pocket carry, and had stiff recoil.

The Kahr feels like more of a quality gun, and Kahr triggers are legendary.
The Kahr is thinner and more suited to pocket carry.
I am far more accurate with the Kahr than I ever was with a KelTec.
Recoil is a non-issue with the Kahr.

You really are comparing apples-to-oranges though.
You could get 2 KelTecs for the price of a Kahr.

Handle both.
I love my Kahr, and have never looked back.

March 31, 2004, 11:20 AM
Never had a Kel-Tec, but I did own a Moonie once. Regardless of where my money went (How many on this board own Japanese vehicles or stuff made in communist China, Pakistan or the East Indies, for example?), I must put in a good word for it.

Has all the traits of an excellent CCW -- with the exception, perhaps, of capacity. Never had a single failure to feed or eject, and was very accurate -- at least in my hands -- up to 25 yds. Maybe farther in yours. The recoil was manageable thanks to a heavy slide, and field-stripping it was a breeze once you removed that 20 lb spring. All in all, it's a great buy, and I highly recommend it.

Hope this helps.

Best regards,

~ Heraclitus

March 31, 2004, 07:32 PM
Though they generally fit the same niche, the P11 and K9 are in two separate categories. The P11 is far more affordable and offers an excellent value, but comparing the P11 to the K9 is akin to comparing a Chevy to a Lexus as far as I'm concerned. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with either, but is it a level comparison?

That is one of the fairest, most accurate evaluations I've read on the P-11;)

Patent Works
March 31, 2004, 08:49 PM
If you have the bucks (~$900?) the Rohrbaugh 9mm is the smallest and lightest around.

They are just releasing them, so it might be a few month's wait.

March 31, 2004, 08:50 PM
I have a PM-9 and a P-11. I like them both. Both have been completely reliable, with any ammo. I just like the feel of the Kahr better than the
Keltec. I have a FIST IWB holster for the Kahr and the Keltec fits in it.
Not perfect, but it works. I think the frame/grip is just enough bigger on
the P-11 than the PM-9 that it does not fit my pockets very well. But I
do carry the PM-9 in an Uncle Mike pocket holster when the conditions
dictate it. All that being said, I have a Keltec P-3AT in a RJ Hedley pocket
holster as I type this....

May 6, 2004, 10:12 AM
I too have owned the Kel-Tec P-11 and the Kahr PM9. I'd say that, if you can afford the price tag, buy the Kahr. But if funds are limited, go with the Kel-Tec.

I can shoot my PM9 far more accurately than I could the P-11, because of the much lighter trigger. But I never had any problems with my P-11s, and they are very good for the purpose for which they are intended.

May 6, 2004, 10:37 AM
Kahr prejudice
from shooter58

"Never had a Kahr...couldn't see giving my money to the Mooneys."

I keep hearing this. I think if you indulge in that prejudice, then it is difficult to be credited with an intelligent opinon about the prejudice against gun ownership.


I was unaware that I needed your approval or admonishment in order to express an opinion. Also, a difference of opinion has no bearing whatever on having an intelligent opinion or about prejudice against gun ownership. I have personal reasons for my feelings toward the Moonies and don't need your permission to express them.
If we want to limit the discussion to the guns involved, I haven't owned any Kahrs, but I have fired several of them. I cannot justify the extra expenditure just to get the nicer feel. If the Keltec works good, I'll go with it.
A Cadillac and a Chevrolet will get me to the same point....the Chevy just does it for less money and with less snob appeal.

May 6, 2004, 10:45 AM
I'm guessing there is a lemon on every tree - in the older Kahr batch there were plenty lemons, but Kahr managed to fix most problems. The new batch, however, seems to be gaining more respect - it is still a picky gun, don't use reloads, for sure. After the 200 round break-in period, the new guns love the high power rounds, it was made for this purpose. I recently bought one of the new batch, a MK9 Elite 2003 with night sights... a work of art; it worked out of the box perfectly. The only complaint I have is that Kahr should have used the stainless steel guide rod, instead of the plastic one - I have just changed mine. Oh, yes, I do have another complaint, it messes up the center of my targets pretty badly.

May 6, 2004, 10:53 AM
I carry a P-11 in my pocket at least 3 times a week...It is a bit bulky, however 11 rounds of 9mm at my disposal is hard to beat...the trigger pull's on both of my P-11's were horrible...sent them to a local gunsmith and it smoothed them right up...

Not giving money to the moonies isnt discrimination, IMHO...It is a choice...they have the right to worship just as I do...I just dont have to give them money...Simple as that

The CHIMERA is coming:D

May 6, 2004, 12:55 PM
Like my P-11, but I LOVE my K9.

May 6, 2004, 05:35 PM
as i understand it, the kt is the smallest, lightest 11 round 9mm pistol available. S&W series 69 12 rnd. mags also fit and do not affect carryability. mine has 900 rnds. thru it without a burp of any sort. accuracy is much enhanced by the addition of an "eraser" trigger stop. i guess there are prettier guns, but then again i'm not going to hang it on the wall and look at it.

i was once "moonied" by a girl in another kahr and i sort of enjoyed it! ;)

May 6, 2004, 06:25 PM
Nope! Not even close.
The Rohrbaugh is by far the smallest lights 9mm pistol in the world and the Kahr PM9 is also smaller than the KT P11. Of course they are both single stack and much more expensive.

May 6, 2004, 06:32 PM
Have two Kel-Tec P-11, and two P-3AT pistols. Mine are very reliable little guns. I carry a P-11 when I can, and a P-3AT when ultimate concealment is necessary. Own other guns, but these seem to be the perfect concealed carry guns. Kinda fun to shoot also.

May 6, 2004, 06:39 PM
howcome you got so many?? afraid one is gonna break?:p :p :p

May 6, 2004, 06:46 PM
I've put 300-400rds through my Kahr blackened P9 and it has perfomred flawless.......
The slide is a little loose on the Polymer frame though but that might be normal......drf

May 6, 2004, 08:03 PM
The only complaint I have is that Kahr should have used the stainless steel guide rod, instead of the plastic one - I have just changed mine. Oh, yes, I do have another complaint, it messes up the center of my targets pretty badly.

Did you buy a stainless one from Kahr or did you have to have it made?

I really like the Elite 2003 model, but at $650, it's starting to get close to the price of the Rohrbaugh.

Anybody know how much the stainless steel Rohrbaugh weighs? Couldn't find anything on their website. Is it gonna be +P rated unlike the aluminum model?

May 6, 2004, 08:27 PM
WonderNine - I bought the stainless steel rod from Kahr.

The R9 Rohrbaugh weighs at 12.8 oz unloaded; 14.3 with mag

May 6, 2004, 09:44 PM
kookapelli, tead the post. i said 11 rounds! you're not even close.

May 6, 2004, 11:21 PM
The R9 Rohrbaugh weighs at 12.8 oz unloaded; 14.3 with mag

That's the aluminum framed R9.

I was wondering about the R9s. The stainless model. I couldn't find anything on the website. I'm assuming around 18oz unloaded.

May 7, 2004, 07:46 PM
howcome you got so many?? afraid one is gonna break?

I wish I had a couple more Autauga's. :cool:

May 7, 2004, 08:17 PM
w9...i payed 450 for my mk9elite 98 from a forum member in practically new condition.

if you are patient you should find one...but dont pay 650 whatever you do!:D

May 7, 2004, 10:22 PM
if ya cannt see giving money to moonies then 1911s are not your game either mormons made them.J.Browning was Mormon

May 7, 2004, 10:24 PM
ahhh Billy?? I didnt understand that at all...Please clarify

May 7, 2004, 10:43 PM
What are moonies, Italians or Blacks? I forgot and I'm not up on racial slurs lately.

May 7, 2004, 11:12 PM
Little bit off topic but I shall explian what a "moonie" is, and no it isnt a racial slur...

Sun Myung Moon, the founder and "spiritual" leader of the Unification Church is the major owner of Kahr arms...His son Justin is the genious that designed the Kahr 9mm...

the followers of Sun Myung Moon are called "moonies" and have been around for along time...

hope this helps.

May 8, 2004, 12:51 AM
reply to the dude back one page about not being able to putchase a Kahr because they are made by Moonies.I own 2 fine Kahr guns K9, MK9 that I bet my life (and wife) on. I hope that clears that up. Sorry!!!!!!!

May 8, 2004, 02:59 AM
Again, for what it's worth, my MK9 is on the disabled list with a bad recoil spring after only 500 rounds or so. I bought the gun used, but know the original owner and also know he only put about 300 rounds through it. That makes for about 800 rounds.
I know that these springs are built for +P+ ammo and should not crap out after such a relatively minuscule round count!!! Especially after a diet of only standard pressure ammo!!! :banghead:

My P3AT is up and running again after a bout with a stuck Wolf case and it goes to the range Sunday!!! :D

May 8, 2004, 07:12 AM
Kahr's lead designer, Justin Moon, is a principal of the company, and an avid shooter and gun enthusiast. His revolutionary design and innovations, registered through six US patents, make the Kahr pistol unique. Completing the Kahr R & D team are highly experienced design and manufacturing engineers, applying years of technical and practical experience in product conception and development.

Kahr Arms - Company Profile (

Issue background (

Anyone here care to live condemned by "sins of the father" (Sun Myung Moon)? Either you like Kahr pistols or you don't. If one tried hard enough and indulged in prejudices, the person could find a reason to avoid purchasing most anything. Want to talk about S&W too, or do you only care about race? Spare us, unless you can substantiate how it affects you personally. Pure prejudice is not something with which I would care to be associated.

Now, if you want to talk about boycotting French products, that would interest me. I have my own weaknesses and consider such an international boycott legitimate (France - always there when they need us). Fortunately, it does not include guns to my knowledge. I buy American whenever it makes any sense to do so. Price isn't everything, and I have been professionally harmed by both free trade and import competition on more than one occasion. I have also been harmed by union demands. I have my biases but not without foundation.

A Kahr pistol suits me well, and I haven't found a close alternative. Packable but powerful, decent looking, high quality, and made in the USA is exactly what I want. I own a T9 and a T40, both absolutely reliable. Price? Well, I bought them because I can. They weren't that high in any case. I don't consider them extravagant in the absence of a close alternative for significantly less money.

What I would welcome is being able to talk about Kahr pistols without tripping over the Moonie thing every time. If someone does not like Kahr pistols because of company associations, wants to define politically correct brands, and feels like they have to interject repeatedly, anti-this and anti-that, they are trolling threads in my opinion and should be discredited.

May 8, 2004, 04:13 PM
If you want good, go with the Kahr (based on other posters experience).
If you want cheap, go with the Kel-Tec.

I had a P-11, SN# 2600 range. I still have it, though it is now a brand new gun. It physically b-r-o-k-e three, count 'em, three times. :cuss: :cuss: :cuss:

Granted, Kel-Tec fixed it for free each time, but I just can't get over the thought of the hammer pin breaking loose from the frame two rounds into a three-round gunfight. :what:

This last time, they stamped my SN# into a brand new current production pistol, but I'm keeping it for trading stock. I have a P-32 as my "always" gun, and if I can carry the P-11 I can carry my Taurus PT-145, so why carry the 9mm?

I know others have purportedly shot thousands of rounds through these little plastic wonders with utter reliability, but methinks that everyone's praise of Kel-Tec's customer service is done for a reason. :scrutiny:

Don't know much about the Kahrs, but they seem solid. You might also want to check out the Taurus PT-111. If you do, be sure it's a Millennium Pro model. The older ones also had frame cracking issues.

May 9, 2004, 07:50 AM
I have never fired a Kel-Tec but I just got rid of a Taurus PT-111 and replaced it with a Kahr E-9. The PT-111 broke twice in less than a year. It had to go, I won't carry a gun that I have doubts about.
I have no doubt that steel beats plastic anytime. Besides, the Kahr is way more accurate than the PT-111 could ever hope to be.

May 9, 2004, 12:01 PM
i'd like to add my voice to the customer service praise but i've never had to send either of them back!:)

May 9, 2004, 06:28 PM
For what its worth, I dont own a kel-tec, however, I do plan on getting a p32 or p3at soon as a BUG. I currently own a PM9 though, and I would say if you have the extra money for it, go with the KAHR. I have put 1000+ rounds through mine and its been 99.9% reliable.

May 9, 2004, 06:49 PM
money69: I agree the Kahr is one fine pistol, but after you carry that little seven and a half ounce P-3AT around for a while you will find yourself leaving the Kahr home more often.

May 9, 2004, 07:34 PM
for what it's worth, i have right at 900 rnds. thru my p11 and 150 thru my p3at and they're both 100%. no malfunctions whatsoever!:)

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