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pocket gun choices between these three

Discussion in 'Handguns: Autoloaders' started by Milkmaster, Feb 9, 2009.


380 Pocket gun Choices between these three only.

  1. Kahr P380

    36 vote(s)
  2. Micro Desert Eagle 380

    15 vote(s)
  3. KelTec P3AT

    88 vote(s)
  4. Neither of these for a 380 pocket pistol

    62 vote(s)
  1. Milkmaster

    Milkmaster Well-Known Member

    WHile I love the PPK, I have found it just too large for my pocket carry. I went on a pocket pistol hunt this weekend at pawn shops, gun stores, and even a gun show. My final choice will be my CCW firearm, so I will buy what is comfortable and suits me. The price will not matter as much as my ability to handle and hit where I aim. The 3 choices I came out with at the end of the day that I would consider for me are the following...

    Kahr 380 - I noticed it was a bit heavier pistol, & I liked the feel of this pistol over the KelTec. It was pretty stiff new, & the range owner said to expect about 3-400 rounds before it would break-in and work jam free. Is this true and should be expected? I was told the blowback design would mean less recoil? I have never owned a Kahr and know little about them.

    Micro Desert Eagle 380 - Sure is an ugly pistol, but I liked the feel after handling it. The Micro was also all metal and had heft to it.

    KelTec P3AT A friend of mine owns one of these. To tell the truth I couldn't hit much with it. I blamed it more on the lightweight therefore more recoil. The others above weigh more, & I would expect them to have less recoil. True?

    Pick from these three for me if price was NOT a factor. The Ruger LCP is not a choice until I can see one and see better reviews on it. For now I am leaving it out.

    FMJMIKE Well-Known Member

    Check out a Bersa concealed carry .380. That would be my choice!
  3. telomerase

    telomerase Well-Known Member

    Blowbacks kick more, and Kahrs aren't blowback. So good thing you're checking everything out ;)
  4. benderx4

    benderx4 Well-Known Member

    Seecamp LWS380 - best you can buy!
  5. Boba Fett

    Boba Fett Well-Known Member



    Absolutely love it for a pocket gun. At 7 yards, I can shred the bullseye and my hand at the same time :D

    That's really my only complaint with the P-3AT: It isn't as fluffed and buffed as the Ruger LCP so it tends to shred your hand after about 200 rounds (the number the manual says to put through it to break it in). But it is not supposed to be a range gun and it has never failed on me in any way and it hasn't has the significant issues that the LCP has had.

    If you aren't in a rush to get the pocket gun, wait about 6 months to a year and get the LCP after all the beta testing has been done by others. I plan to do just that. And I'll probably keep the P-3AT as well just because it has been such a good gun.

    I haven't had a chance to see a Kahr 380 yet, but what I've read seems very promising. And I do like Kahr's generally solid construction of their firearms (haven't owned one, just played with them).

    Also make sure you do some research into a good 380 round. I like the Hornady Critical Defense stuff. It shoots nicely out of the P-3AT.
  6. Dr_2_B

    Dr_2_B Well-Known Member

    I'm sorry. Did you say THESE THREE ONLY just to receive two immediate replies suggesting a Seecamp and a Bersa?

    Milky, I am so sorry (and embarrassed) for us respondents.

    I happen to like the P3AT, but I haven't fired the other two.
  7. Boba Fett

    Boba Fett Well-Known Member

    No need to be sorry matheath, one of the possible poll questions was
    which seems to indicate that people should post what their "neither" choice is if the OP hasn't ruled it out. Never know, the OP might not have thought of something. Speaking of which Milkmaster, if you haven't looked at Bobo's pocket comparison chart, you should.

    But I agree that the Bersa certainly doesn't fit. It isn't really a "pocket pistol" IMO and since the OP already said that the PPK was out because of size, I don't see how the Bersa would be any better.

    The Seecamp LWS380 is a tad (and by a "tad" I mean a lot) on the expensive side. I have not shot one, but I just can't justify the price considering that there are plenty of other pocket pistols which will accomplish the same goal for a lot less. But if you have the money Milkmaster, you might consider it if you haven't already.

    I'm with you on the P-3AT matheath. Great gun...we should form a club :D
  8. ByAnyMeans

    ByAnyMeans Well-Known Member

    Love my p3at. I am new to handgun shooting but i'm able to make c.o.m. shots to seven yards. It works for me as a pocket gun that can go anywhere.
  9. Onmilo

    Onmilo Well-Known Member

    I own a P-32 and enjoy it.
    Excellent little walking around guns.

    If you like the .380 over the .32 acp then I would also recommend the P3AT or the Ruger clone LCP pistol.

    I really can't vouch for the Kahr as I know of too many folks who have had some major problems with them and know nothing of the Desert Eagle mini gun having not had one in hand as of yet.
  10. MostlyHarmless

    MostlyHarmless Well-Known Member

    I'm fond of my P3AT but there are two things to keep in mind. The first is that Kel Tec has reportedly had inconsistent quality in the past and you have to expect to do some of the final testing yourself and send the thing back if you got a lemon. They're inexpensive guns despite the good design and so that's not unreasonable. Just don't let it be a surprise.

    The second thing to consider is that a carry weapon is a personal choice and some people have tried very hard to like the Kel Tec and found that they just can't. Part of it is anatomy and if your hand shape and strength is wrong the P3AT might not work for you. Part of it is the recoil. Part of it is the accuracy, and if you're into shooting bullseyes at 25 yards you might be disappointed.
  11. 357sigRog

    357sigRog Well-Known Member

    I agree the poll does say neither, do give the Bersa a look too. I've owned a Bersa for years, no malfuntions and very accurate.
  12. Milkmaster

    Milkmaster Well-Known Member

    Do you guys think my original question/poll will be inaccurate since the Kahr and the micro are relatively new guns? My local firing range doesn't rent any of the pocket pistols. I liked the Kel Tec until i shot it. I don't know if it is because of it being a pocket pistol in the first place and not comfortable, or if it is less comfortable than other pocket pistols for my hands. Trying to figure this out before I lay down the green.
  13. rhoggman

    rhoggman Well-Known Member

    I have a few things to say here:

    1. I can't knock the Kahr, but Initial reports had the Kahr up around 13 or 14 ounces. I looked on Kahr's website and it says "Pistol 9.97 ounces (w/o magazine)". Why would they give the wieght without the magazine? I think they know their pistol being a few ounces more than the Kel-Tec is a negative for them. At 14 ounces you can buy small frame revolvers that come in much more adventageous "power packages" than the .380 ACP. For this reason I think this market will be ruled by the sub-10 ounce pistols.

    2. Micro Desert Eagle - I have only heard positive things about this gun, other than it's beauty. It is slightly cheaper than the Kahr, and still a little heavier than the Kahr as well. The Micro Desert Eagle is an imported gun and is known elsewhere as the "ZVI Kevin".

    3. Kel-Tec is not a bad little piece, and many trust their lives with it. I would venture to say that most of the kinks have long since been worked out, but the P3AT does lack in design features. It is also much lighter, and more cost efective than the Kel-Tec, and the Micro-DE. If you are not accurate with the Kel-Tec I doubt you will be much more accurate with any of these small pistols without much practice.

    4. Personally I would want to stay light, and cheap when it comes to the pocket gun, which is why I would spend my money on the Ruger LCP. The LCP improves upon the Kel-Tec design, and adds a couple of nice features. The Taurus 738 TCP will improve upon this design even more, and add a couple of more features. For now I believe in this market the LCP is still the best bet.

    One last little tidbit... If I wanted to spend $500 on a pocket 380 with 7 shots, it would probably go to the Mico Desert Eagle because this is not a new gun. It is reliable and proven, and that is hard to beat, but I just cannot justify it when there are lighter, cheaper, reliable pistols available for the taking. Like I stated before, if you want a heavier pistol (10 ounces or more), and you are willing to shell out $500 or more you may as well get something with a lot more power.

    Then the debate becomes .357 Mag vs. .380 ACP/ 5 shots or 7 shots/ RECOIL and for most people in a defense situation the caliber is going to make the decision. Although shooting a 12 ounce .357 is not exactly the most pleasant thing to do in this world, most people will put up with it when it comes to defense, otherwise they just toss some .38SPL+P down the pipe, which is still going to put the .380 to shame.
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2009
  14. Spyvie

    Spyvie Well-Known Member

    If you are looking at the Micro Eagle, you might consider an NAA Guardian .380.

    I'm pretty happy with mine, much more "pocketable" than the PPK, and much more trustworthy that my LCP.


    EDIT: As to the original question... anything but the KelTec;)
  15. usp9

    usp9 Well-Known Member

    Small is important for pocket carry and the smallest is the Seecamp.
  16. Anna's Dad

    Anna's Dad Well-Known Member

    I use the Kel-Tec but if it doesn't work for you, you shouldn't buy it.

    I've never owned or fired any of the others although I did own a Kahr MK-9 for a while. It was a nice gun, just too big/heavy for pocket carry so I sold it.
  17. CoRoMo

    CoRoMo Well-Known Member

    I'm a Kel Tec fan.
  18. CDH

    CDH Well-Known Member

    That's me to a "T". I bought my PPK brand new in 1984 and it was my primary "deep conceal" pistol most of those years when there was no such thing as a CCW license. It was the only good pistol I had that could be carried without worrying about being made.

    But I recently went a different way than your choices.

    In the end, I bought both a Rohrbaugh R9s Stealth (built like a Rolex watch and in 9mm but the same size as a Ruger LCP), and then I bought an LCP just for grins and because everyone is talking about them.

    I am especially tickled with my R9s, and it's replaced the PPK totally. The R9s is significantly smaller than the PPK and quite a bit lighter as well, plus it's a better defense weapon being that it's 9mm.

    The LCP is the exact same size as the R9s, but it's clearly not as well made although I think it's a deal for the price (around $300). However, it's build quality is also clearly better than the P3AT, one of the pistols you're considering and which is virtually identical in size, weight, and operation.

    If price isn't a factor, then the Rohrbaugh is the one for you. You'll compare it to your PPK and wonder how you ever carried that big, heavy, "beast" that only gave you .380 protection.
    Plus, I think you'll agree with me that the build quality of your PPK is stellar, and of all the ones you mention, none of them are made as well as the PPK.
    Only the Rohrbaugh is made as well (I think better) than the PPK.

  19. mrt949

    mrt949 Well-Known Member

    SEECAMP only way to go save for the best .even if it's a 32. it is my E D C :)
  20. Milkmaster

    Milkmaster Well-Known Member

    CDH, You didn't say what price a Rohrbaugh R9s Stealth pistol goes for $$? What price range are they. I have not seen those locally at any gun store here.

    I say that price is not a factor. I mean to say that the difference between a $300 KelTec and a $500 Kahr would not stop me if I liked the Kahr. I don't however see myself getting the Seecamp for $1000 although it looks and sounds great. I guess there has to be a limit to my madness :)

    Thanks for all who have replied so far. I definitely have more looking to do. I am still open to discussion.

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