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CCW: Full Sized Vs Sub Compact

Discussion in 'Handguns: General Discussion' started by Monkeybear, Aug 30, 2007.

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  1. Monkeybear

    Monkeybear Member

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    I am working on my CC rig and I recently decided not to carry my P2000sk. I plan on trading it in for a P226R that I will carry with a blade tech holster.

    Every sub compact I have ever tried to shoot has made me uncomfortable. I just have not gotten used to shooting with such a short grip. I understand that I may one day find myself shooting in all manner of uncomfortable ways to save my life but I think I would like to feel as confident as possible with my CCW. Granted I shot less than a box of ammo though the P2000sk I have spent much more time with other sub compacts and I run into the same problem with them all. I just don't feel good about the way I shoot sub compacts.

    So I have decided to attempt to carry a full sized pistol.

    Help me out Highroaders, am I doing the right thing? Should I keep trying with different small pistols or should I just carry a full sized? Is it really that much harder? An inch here and a half there plus a little more weight, is it really that bad?

    Advice?
    Critisim?
    General Comments?
     
  2. strat81

    strat81 Member

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    An inch here or there made a huge difference for me, so I went for the shortest grip on a gun I'd consider reasonable for carry. I carry it with flush mags since even the pinky extension makes it print like crazy. I'm also pretty short and refuse to wear hawaiian shirts. YMMV.
     
  3. azredhawk44

    azredhawk44 Member

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    I think you gotta do what you feel most comfortable doing.

    Weight will increase with a full size pistol though... make sure you got a good belt.

    I carry a full size 1911 sometimes, and it can get heavy. Makes me want to look for an aluminum or polymer framed 1911 with a 4" barrel. But that's me.

    Good luck.:)
     
  4. littlelefty

    littlelefty Member

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    Full size 1911 carried here. No real issues. When my clothing choice, or my laziness of not wanting to "gear up" come in to play I carry a Kel Tec P11 in a DeSantis Nemesis pocket holster. So far, so good.

    I find that I carry each about the same amount.
     
  5. Bobarino

    Bobarino member

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    split the difference and get a USP Compact or a P2000. they're in between the two you listed size wise. there's tons and tons of options between full size sub-compact. how about a Kahr? thats a good compromise too. so is G19/23, P228/229, XD Compacts etc etc.

    Bobby
     
  6. bb21

    bb21 Member

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    I think your question is a very good one. It seems to me that you are not comfortable with the subcompact because you don't shoot it as well. My last trip to the range I was reminded of the same thing, I first shot my Mill Pro in 9mm, then my XD45compact, then a full size all steel Baby Eagle in 9mm. I shot my Mill Pro fine, my XD quite well and my Beagle very well. I had don't this before and on one occasion the first thing I did after shooting was order a IWB holster for my Baby Eagle.
    I would assume that almost everyone shoots a full size better than a compact. It is a matter of compromise between size, comfort, capacity, power and weight. You have to be comfortable with what you choose and much of that depends on what you wear and your method of carry. For me the compromise I choose most often is my XD, but I sometimes need to change that depending on what I wear.
    I think you'll find that you can make the Sig work and it will probably work well but you may need to adjust your method or get a better holster or belt, that depends on what you are comfortable with. Make sure you think long and hard before you sale a gun, you don't want any regrets. Hope this helps.
    Good Luck and Be Safe!
     
  7. P97

    P97 Member

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    A good holster makes a lot of difference. I have carried a full size Auto for several years. I started with cheap holsters and tried a lot of different ways of carrying. What I have wound up with is a Milt Sparks VM2HS and I carry full time and very comfortably. I carry IWB under a untucked shirt.
     
  8. Deaf Smith

    Deaf Smith Member

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    Get a sub compact. You just won't carry the full sized one 7/24 summer and winter. My Glock 26 is a constant companion. I'd hate to drag around some heavy piece all day.
     
  9. Muddflap

    Muddflap Member

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    I carry a Sig P229 without too much problem, although I don't worry about printing as much with my P239. I do agree that what ever you carry, if it's big and heavy, get a good belt and holster. I use a belt from The Beltman, and VMII's from Milt Sparks for both of the Sigs.
    I wouldn't completely give up on the sub compacts. There are times when I pocket carry a PM9 or a Keltec P3AT. They will get the job done. They are just not 50 yard guns.When I practice with the Keltec, it is usually at about 5 yards or less, and I don't worry about putting 50 rounds through 1 hole.
     
  10. AK103K

    AK103K Member

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    I have for about 30 years now. I really dont find it any harder to carry a full sized pistol than a smaller one, and sometimes, I'm more self conscious with the smaller gun. Once you find a holster and belt your comfortable with, and learn to dress and carry yourself, you can carry pretty much anything you want with little difficulty.

    I'd much rather work a little (not that I really have to) at carrying a gun that is easier to shoot well with and carries a full load of ammo, than to deal with basically the same thing, but with less gun. There just really isnt all that much difference size wise between most of the full size and compacts.
     
  11. Monkeybear

    Monkeybear Member

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    That is what I was thinking. I already have a belt from the beltman, I just need a good holster.
     
  12. normal

    normal Member

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    I also split the difference and went with an XD 45 compact. In winter, I carry it as a full size with the 13 round magazines. When it gets super hot (for about 3 weeks in the summer), I switch to an XD 9 subcompact. I guess you could say that I carry a subcompact, compact, and full size depending on the weather.
     
  13. Zen21Tao

    Zen21Tao Member

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    Is the P226 a single stack? I have a P220, P229 Elite in .40 cal, P239 in .40 cal, P245 and GRS. With the exception of the P229, all the others are single stacks. I have found that for me, the printing that comes from the thickness of a double stack is much more of an issue than length and height. I can carry my P220 just as easily as my P239 and P245 but the latter two options are more comfortable, especially when movement (such a bending and sitting) is an issue. You might consider shecking out the P239 or, if you like .45 cal, the P245/P220 Carry.
     
  14. nhhillbilly

    nhhillbilly Member

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    I carry a mid size Glock 23. A good holster and belt make all the differance in the world. I second the Milt Sparks Versa Max II. I have carried a Beretta 92F and Full Size Colt 1911 in the past. The Glock 23 works better and it is issued to me.
     
  15. AK103K

    AK103K Member

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    The 226 is double stack. I have both the 220 and 226, and have carried both, and see no difference. In fact, both fit the same holster.

    SIG's really differ little in size between the models, the exception being the P230/232. At most, its just a half inch here and there.

    Same goes for 1911's. Other than barrel length and maybe a half inch in grip length, the bulk of the gun is about the same.
     
  16. shadowalker

    shadowalker Member

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    I have tried compacts they just aren't for me. The smallest pistol I carry concealed is a Sig P229, I also carry a XD 45 ACP and a Ruger P90 from time to time with no problems, conceal with just an untucked polo and have concealed with a dark / printed tee-shirt.

    The biggest thing is a good belt and a good holster, without those two things you'll have trouble concealing a pistol of any size. I carry anytime I'm not at work or sleeping.

    I use a Haugen Handgun Leather holster but Galco makes a good quality, more mass produced set of holsters.
     
  17. CountGlockula

    CountGlockula Member

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    There are three sizes for handguns: Fullsize, Compact and SubCompact.

    I'd recommend checking out one in a Compact size like a Hk P2000 or Glock 19.
     
  18. LT1coupe

    LT1coupe Member

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    The Taurus Mil Pro PT145 is a nice compromise between size, capacity & power.
     
  19. LT1coupe

    LT1coupe Member

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    dbl post
     
    Last edited: Aug 31, 2007
  20. Monkeybear

    Monkeybear Member

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    The size difference between a full sized and a compact is even less, I find it even harder to justify a compact over a full sized when the difference is so minimal.
     
  21. 1911RjB

    1911RjB Member

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    i carry a 5" 1911, with H&D Dakota Defender, and have no problems. Like the majority of posts here, get a good belt and comfortable holster, and you'll be fine.
     
  22. Polish_Pounder

    Polish_Pounder Member

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    I carry a 5" 1911 in an IWB holster and don't have any problem with it. I actually find it easier to carry than my old 4013 TSW compact that weighs half as much because my 1911 is thin and the long slide spreads the weight out nicely. I carry my Gov't model under a normal T-shirt 90% of the time and have never had anyone find it, even when asked to guess where it is. I think people would find carrying less of a hassle if they tried a flat gun like a 1911 or Kahr and a quality IWB holster. I don't have to wear button-up shirts or jackets or hokey vests to conceal a serious fighting arm.

    -Polish
     
  23. Eyesac

    Eyesac Member

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    Nothing's set in stone...

    I carried a fullsize 1911 (5'9 165lbs) for the first month for the same reason as you've mentioned. I just didn't like compact guns. After about a month of lugging that thing around I shot a buddies G27 (with the pinky ext) and went right out and bought one. So, you're preferences might change (or not), nothing's set in stone. Good luck!
     
  24. Monkeybear

    Monkeybear Member

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    Went to by the gun store today and took a look at a M&P full sized and a compact. Huge difference(sorry CountGlockula). The compact seemed a good size. When I get some money together (read: pay my bills) I just may go and buy one.

    Thanks Guys!
     
  25. Kevin108

    Kevin108 Member

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    It takes time to figure out the the various methods and locations of where to carry what with your own body. That said, I can comfortably and effectively conceal my G17, G26, and 1911 in roughly the same place on my belt but with different holster cants. If I knew now that this was the case, I probably wouldn't even own the G26.
     
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