Most robust (true) pocket pistol

Discussion in 'Handguns: General Discussion' started by defjon, Jun 9, 2022.

  1. CDW4ME

    CDW4ME Member

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    @Autodidactic has been kind enough to define what a "true" pocket pistol is for everyone, based on his pockets.
    Since we don't have the size of his pockets we'll have to use the dimensions one of his approved examples.
    Kahr PM9 - L 5.4'' - H 4'' - W .9"
    Glock 42 - L 5.9'' - H 4.1" - W .94 ("approved" size)
    Glock 43 - L 6.2'' - H 4.2'' - W 1.0 (This is deemed to big)

    Apparently less than 6'' long, 4.1 high and 1'' is officially a "true" pocket pistol.
    Lets see if we can get more 9mm "true" pocket size pistols other than the Kahr, based on the official defined dimensions.
    Beretta Nano - L 5.6'' - H 4.1'' - W .9''
    Springfield Hellcat L 6'' - H 4'' - W 1'' (OMG it is official "true" pocket size)

    There ya go, now we have three 9mm pistols that meet the official approved dimensions of pocket size.
    And with 9mm we have more decent bullet options. What is decent? Well since Mr. Autodidactic kindly defined true pocket size, I'll define decent. :D
    At least 12'' penetration and consistent expansion (must meet both criteria) in heavy clothed gel.
    In 380 bullet options that meet both criteria are limited, hint you have about two choices:
    https://www.luckygunner.com/labs/self-defense-ammo-ballistic-tests/

    By going with an "official" true size pocket 9mm your decent™ ;) bullet options are much greater.
     
  2. Autodidactic

    Autodidactic Member

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    With all due respect, the thread mentioned "true pocket pistol." Discussions on pocket pistol aren't "what is the best carry handgun for self defense or caliber?" That's a separate discussion, but it often seems people insist on turning it into the second question.

    Maybe the very smallest of 9mm subcompacts, such as the Kahr and Hellcat, and Glock 42 can be counted, but again, I think they are borderline for the definition. Have you tried pocket carrying any of those? I mostly pocket carry. .38 Special snubbies, and 9mm subcompacts, generally are barely doable in 95% of pockets. They can be barely fit into some pockets, but don't work well for this purpose unless very large pockets (cargo shorts/pants, winter coat pockets, etc). For normal jeans, dress, and slacks pockets, they are too large. That's why most people don't consider them modern "pocket pistols." I don't, even though I like them.

    Also, with respect, why do you insist on every thread on pushing a discussion about cartridges, penetration, caliber wars, etc?
     
    Last edited: Jun 12, 2022
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  3. Jim Watson

    Jim Watson Member

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    My Glock 43 fits my khakis but a friend had to go with a G42 in his jeans.
    I have a P32 for snug pockets but might look for something in between.
     
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  4. 3Crows

    3Crows Member

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    Has anyone actually "worn out" a LCR of any version?

    IMG-3724.jpg

    The .357 is a steel frame, I think my wrist would be worn through before the LCR is done. But not sure they qualify as a pocket pistol though I do carry it in a coat or vest pocket in the winter, otherwise IWB.

    3C
     
  5. Autodidactic

    Autodidactic Member

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    I think all non pocket carriers should go try primary pocket carry with a range of handguns for a week. Not just with cargo pants/shorts, or equivalent, or large coat pockets.

    You will find real quick, as I did, that even snubbies and most subcompacts aren’t ideal or are too big, and for tight fit clothes or small pockets, don’t work at all.
     
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  6. Jim Watson

    Jim Watson Member

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    If your wardrobe is more important than your sidearm, I can see a problem.
     
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  7. chicharrones

    chicharrones needs more ammo

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    As a primarily pocket gun carrier, I have and have done so from day 1 when I got my carry license in 2008. It really depends on the pants, and probably also depends on the build of the individual.

    I have jeans that don't take 2" snub nose revolvers well, but I also have loose fit work jeans that take 3" barreled J-frame sized revolvers well. And I have Docker type khakis that take up to 3" barreled J-frame sized revolvers well. And when I mean well, the grip is not exposed and these guns can be drawn effectively from a leather pocket holster with no fumbling. None of these pants I mention have cargo sized pockets, and I'm only 5' 9" so I don't wear big and tall men's clothing.

    The only problem I see with something like a 2.25" SP101 is the 25 to 26 ounce weight. My personal upper weight limit for a loaded pocket gun is about 22 ounces.

    The key for me with a pocket revolver is there must be no hammer spur. That spur can cause one to need a bigger pocket, IME.

    Now, a subcompact autoloader can be a different story in my pockets due to part of the gun being above the gripping hand. Glock slides are square blocks above the hand, while some pocket guns have a sloping rear slide profile. The sloped slides draw easier in my experience (again, no exposed hammer spur).

    For me, that means I need a shorter autoloader than a revolver if I'm carrying in a pocket. Others will decide from their own personal experience and needs.

    Edit: Pics of gun-to-base-of-thumb relationships, which I find important in drawing a pocket gun. The G36 is a bit large at 7" long, but the revolver is only 1/2" shorter. Call this a worst to best series of pics for ease of draw from my pockets. For sure, the G36 doesn't do well in my pockets.

    worst-best-1.jpg
    worst-best-2.jpg
    worst-best-3.jpg
    worst-best-4.jpg
     
    Last edited: Jun 12, 2022
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  8. JERRY

    JERRY Member

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    Before the my dad can beat up your dad crowd gets carried away, we should decide what type of pocket is in question. Jeans, Slacks, Cargo shorts, Dressier shorts, etc... all have pockets, and they are all different. Then ease of carry, actual concealability, how it looks sitting down since that's what most will be doing the majority of the day.
     
  9. CDW4ME

    CDW4ME Member

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    You were stating what is and is not a pocket pistol, so I tried to find 9mm examples that met your size requirement.
    Ironically a 38 snub exceeds your size limitation as it is bigger than a Glock 42 and on par with a Sig 365

    I carry a PM9 in my weak hand front pocket, it is 2nd option (AKA "back-up") to a Glock AIWB.

    Why would we discuss pocket pistols and exclude caliber? I said a couple of 380 loads meet my definition of decent: 12''+ and consistent expansion.
    If people don't agree with my definition of decent bullet performance they could ignore it, same as ignore your definition of true pocket pistol. We are both posting our opinions and odds are many would agree with what you view as true pocket size same as they would agree that 12''+ penetration with consistent expansion is desirable.

    No such thing as caliber war - If there was a "caliber war" 9mm clearly won it; now, we just have caliber discussions and some perform better than others.
     
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  10. CDW4ME

    CDW4ME Member

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    Agree, shape matters.
    I much prefer the feel of Sig 365 in hand over PM9 but with some pockets the 365 may not draw as quickly (smoothly) and its going to be an all out emergency if I'm trying to draw for a "2nd option" (back-up) in my weak hand (left) front pocket. The poo is hitting the fan and its Mastiff size poo. Which is also why I prefer that pocket gun to be 9mm, if I'm drawing that pocket gun things are up close and my life may be riding on that bullet(s) incapacitating the threat ASAP. 12''+ penetration and expansion sounds like a desirable performance if in that unfortunate situation.
     
  11. Autodidactic

    Autodidactic Member

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    This thread isn't about your usual caliber lectures, with respect. Sometimes real feedback is required. Answer the thread topic.

    But also, what is the need for these other guns to be "pocket pistols" when really, they aren't considered such now days? It seems to me what you are trying to do is again push ideal carry (to you) handguns and power, and then claim they are pocket pistols to prove your point.

    I already said I think your average .38 special snubby isn't really a pocket pistol size.
     
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  12. Autodidactic

    Autodidactic Member

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    That's what I'm saying though, "pocket pistol" can't be based on exceptionally large or loose pockets. My cargo shorts, and winter coat pockets, can pocket carry a lot of guns. That doesn't mean those guns are "pocket pistols."

    I think the cargo shorts, cargo pants, and equivalents can't be the determiners of such. We can take huge winter coats and pockets and fit probably a full sized handgun. This doesn't mystically imbue a "pocket pistol" status on them.

    Hickock45 discusses this on one episode while looking I think at compact Glocks. While wearing cargo shorts with large pockets, he shows it's possible but again states they usually aren't considered so otherwise.

    For most jeans, well fitted slacks, workout shorts/pants, etc, subcompact and bigger don't work well if at all.
     
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  13. Autodidactic

    Autodidactic Member

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    A lot of people cannot dress around a firearm for example professionally. Maybe in their private lives.
     
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  14. 3Crows

    3Crows Member

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    I was thinking the same way. People who need to dress professionally and look sharp and contemporary in a fitted suit or expensive slacks and sport coat or who do not wear "dad" jeans and smelly sneakers, a pocket pistol is not going to be my LCR or a 1911. I know the standard "carry" uniform of 20 year old pleated oversize khakis or baggy dad jeans or worse, BDUs with a dozen pockets, with an oversize shirt worn unbuttoned (or vest or jacket) over and a tee shirt under, but that just does not work for me on any level.

    3C
     
  15. chicharrones

    chicharrones needs more ammo

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    One group of people's pants and pockets don't set the rules for other people's pants and pockets.

    Back in the '80s and early '90s, I certainly wore some weasel-squeezer jeans. I guess those would be equivalent to skinny jeans now. I can't pocket carry much of anything in weasel-squeezers. If I can hardly get my keys out of a pocket, the jeans are a bit snug.

    My work pants are simple Wranglers exactly like this. Flexibility is required for repairing machinery and those Wranglers are worn with a tucked in button up short sleeve shirt and steel toe boots. Might look like "dad" clothes, but all ages in my line of work dress similarly.
     
    Last edited: Jun 12, 2022
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  16. Otto

    Otto Member

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    I'll make this easy for you....

    G42 .380 subcompact.....skip it.
    G43 9mm subcompact .....yes.
    G19 9mm compact....yes.
     
  17. Autodidactic

    Autodidactic Member

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    F504FD2B-F46B-40CF-BE27-5B2ABFB40DF9.png F504FD2B-F46B-40CF-BE27-5B2ABFB40DF9.png
    1) actual borderline pocket pistol
    2) not pocket pistol
    3) not pocket pistol

    Here’s a Glock 43 overlaid on a Shield Plus. Basically the same size.

    Shield Plus’ aren’t pocket guns; I have one.
     
    Last edited: Jun 12, 2022
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  18. Mike OTDP

    Mike OTDP Member

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    Rohrbaughs eat recoil springs. They're rated for 200 rounds, maybe 250. Which is why I bought four spares for mine.
     
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  19. Mike OTDP

    Mike OTDP Member

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    I'll add that this is why the vest pocket pistols were invented. Those Browning Babys and Cz-45s fit unobtrusively into dress pants. As does the Seecamp, if you can get a pocket holster that will keep the blasted thing butt-up.
     
  20. Autodidactic

    Autodidactic Member

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    Yes, agreed. But can we agree the definition of “pocket pistol” can’t be “there is some pocket out there that fits this .45 1911, therefore it’s a pocket pistol!”

    :rofl:
     
  21. Autodidactic

    Autodidactic Member

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    Right, I think that what most people think of as “pocket pistol” today is what was once “vest pistol.”
     
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  22. Autodidactic

    Autodidactic Member

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    Right, occasionally I’ll wear clothes that allow large carry, such as hiking with cargo shorts or my 5.11 pants. Or, during winter with a winter coat. But, I have a professional job. I can’t just dress around firearms all the time. Most people who propose such likely don’t have a professional, in person job, and never did. It’s the same with those who say they won’t go anywhere they can’t carry. Unless one is federal agent, police etc, there are many gun free zones including for our kids and professions. If one is an educator or lawyer, what are you going to do?
     
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  23. chicharrones

    chicharrones needs more ammo

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    Good question. K through 12 public school teachers can't really carry guns to work and lawyers may be limited if going to a courthouse.
     
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  24. 3Crows

    3Crows Member

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    And many if not most work places forbid it. I could leave my gun in my car but if I took it on my person and somebody rat me out I would have been fired from a very nice and lucrative job. And the company took security serious and had hired armed and trained guards, not rent a cops for security. I felt pretty darn safe. So when I hear that if I cannot carry then I do not go I kind of wonder as well. There are many, many places and professions, jobs, work places where toting a gun and dressing to carry a large and "robust" gun would get one fired or in other sorts of undesirable trouble. A pocket pistol, to me, is something not much larger than my S&W BG or an LCP or similar. I guess I have small pockets.

    3C
     
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  25. Autodidactic

    Autodidactic Member

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    Or any other job where it takes you to prohibited location (for firearms) legally. Sure, if riots are going down or some apocalyptic things, some may decide to take the risk. Or leave in the car. But, for many of us it's not worth losing our job or worse, legal problems.
    Probably the car solution may work for many, as it's harder to detect. With schools one can still get in legal trouble with that. But let's say it's just an employer forbidding firearms even in cars, that's a different beast and question if it's not illegal but one could lose their job if found out. What are they going to do, search your car? Maybe if a high security place. But I think the bigger risk is being ratted out.

    When I worked for the government for many years, each job had metal detectors and guards when coming in. Actually, at one location I think they were police. I didn't carry there obviously.

    But yes, as far as dressing for it, like you said it's not always possible or advisable either. This is why true pocket pistols like you said are great. I carried a S&W Bodyguard .380 to the gym tonight.

    I think all of this militates in favor of not telling most people that we even carry or own firearms. For me, it's a need-to-know basis mostly with close friends and family. I've literally never told a coworker thus far. That's partly because 90% of my coworkers are hyper lefties.
     
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