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Pistol weight in ounces: When does it get heavy?

Discussion in 'Handguns: General Discussion' started by Nom de Forum, Apr 16, 2014.

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  1. Nom de Forum

    Nom de Forum Member

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    How much does a pistol have to weigh (loaded) before you consider it heavy? This is of course a subjective determination unless we analyze the spectrum of pistol weights and find an average. I really hope we don't do that, but if anyone else does be my guest. Think about what weight in ounces you find heavy for CCW in various carry modes, and what you consider heavy for belt holster carry. I'll start first with CCW in a pocket: anything over 16oz is getting heavy and over 20oz is too heavy.
     
    Last edited: Apr 16, 2014
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  2. JERRY

    JERRY Member

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    in my opinion you've hit the nail on the head for pocket carry. belt carry is too subjective because of the style of belt and holster used, IWB/OWB... etc. I am referring to loaded weight, not empty.

    some people say they carry all sorts of what I consider big and heavy guns in their pockets.... I just don't have the right kind of clothes to do so.
     
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  3. Nom de Forum

    Nom de Forum Member

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    Thanks for mentioning loaded weight as I forgot to specify that. It is really subjective, but I would like to hear some opinions about belt carry be it IWB, OWB, appendix, crossdraw, etc.
     
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  4. JERRY

    JERRY Member

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    with a decent belt and holster I can carry a full sized 1911 OWB or IWB without any issue. gun weight has never been a problem for me except for a heavy gun flopping in my front pocket beating my thigh as I walked...

    then again I wear a police gun belt for 12 hours a day so a civilian rig is a cake walk in comparison....
     
  5. herrwalther

    herrwalther Member

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    The heaviest firearm I carry IWB is 35 oz unloaded, I don't usually weigh them loaded. Anything above that starts getting heavy for IWB carry. I don't have any firearms for pocket carry anymore but I did carry a pocket .380 that weighed about 17oz or so loaded. That only became a pain if I decided I was going to jog with it there, otherwise it was fairly unnoticeable.
     
  6. Nom de Forum

    Nom de Forum Member

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    For fanny pack carry, used when running, I found the Glock 27 (loaded weight approx 26oz) to be so heavy that I stopped using it. If the belt was not very tightly cinched the G27 made the pack flow around to much. If not running, I never carry a fanny pack as it screams "He's gotta gun" when worn by an old white guy like me.

    herrwather,

    For me 35oz loaded weight is about the limit for IWB. I am weak and wimpy I guess. :D
     
  7. Fiv3r

    Fiv3r Member

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    For me, it has a lot to do with the profile of the gun. Even the lightweight G26 felt chunky enough that I couldn't find a comfortable way to wear it every day.

    Then again, a 40oz unloaded 1911 is a breeze for me to pack around IWB unless I have to take it on and off a lot.

    Same goes for semi-autos and revolvers. A 26 oz unloaded FNX-9 is more noticeable to me than my unloaded 26 oz SP-101 for two reasons. One, a full magazine of 17 rounds makes the polymer gun heavier and less weight neutral on the hip. Two, all of the extra weight (what little 5 cartridges make) loaded into the compact SP101 is centered in the holster. I could load that little tank up with bear-loaded heavy-heavy bullets and probably wouldn't notice the extra weight much at all.

    For pocket carry, it absolutely has to be light and flat. I really can't do more than an LCP.
     
  8. wally

    wally Member

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    Exactly my sentiments.

    Same for carry on the belt, anything heavier and my pants keep falling down unless the belt is so tight as to be painful, I'm not a belt and suspenders kind of guy :)
     
  9. fastbolt

    fastbolt Member

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    I've acquired a lot of excellent quality belts & belt holsters over the years of my LE career, and then into retirement.

    After enough time, when it came to both uniform, plainclothes and off-duty weapons, I pretty much considered "heavy" to have arrived at 39 ounces. (Based upon weights of my last service revolver and some steel-framed S&W 3rd gen guns.)

    Pocket holster carry weight starts to get a bit too noticeable and occasionally bothersome, to me, at over 15 oz (unloaded).

    For belt holster carry nowadays, depending on my activities, manner of dress, etc ... annoying can start at as light as 20 oz.

    Mostly, instead of simple weight, it's more the length of the slide/muzzle and/or grip height, as well as the thickness/girth of the grip frame.

    The "best" holsters for my needs can certainly help mitigate this, and occasionally I may choose one of my different belts to accompany one or another of my different holsters (leather & plastic belt scabbards of various design/maker, as well as some different paddles). Just depends.

    Having carried issued K & L-frame revolvers, as well as Medium & Large-framed personally-owned revolvers (Redhawks, N-frames, etc), as well as 5" 1911's & 4 1/4" Commanders, I've had some small experience with carrying largish revolvers & pistols. A 7 1/2" revolver presented some occasional difficulties in clothing selection. ;)

    Nowadays I much prefer smaller & lighter retirement weapons for CCW. ;)
     
  10. IlikeSA

    IlikeSA Member

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    For me, it is 42 ounces with a regular belt and holster, 56 ounces with a large revolver and a proper duty belt, and I cannot comment on any pocket pistols because I haven't got any.
     
  11. btg3

    btg3 Member

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    ^^^
    If not pocket carried, then total rig weight may need to be invoked.

    Maybe even personal body weight? What's another pound or two anyhow? ;)
     
  12. AFDavis11

    AFDavis11 Member

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    I'm not familiar with gun weight, like ounces, really. I consider weight as a ratio. Weight/firepower/recoil control.
    An airweight 5 shot revolver is perfect. In .357mag it's not heavy enough. An aluminum 1911 is great, and a steel one would probably be fine.

    I consider my Walther PPK a little too heavy (for a .380)

    But, I consider my Model 29, with 44 specials, perfect

    So to me it's the weight of carry, against the weight of firepower, against the good weight that mitigates recoil. I want a nice balance. If I'm going to carry a heavy gun, I want either a cannon, or lots of ammo.

    Almost any gun in an ankle holster is heavy to me. My 1911 (alum) is great on a belt. My PPK and my 29 I usually shoulder holster.

    I could probably carry my S/W BG 38 in an ankle holster, but that be my limit.

    Some guns can go lots of places, some guns cannot.
     
  13. 40-82

    40-82 Member

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    Sometimes in hot weather in a public place I am forced to carry some quite small pocket pistols. I've even carried the NAA .22. When I consider what I can actually do with these guns in comparison to what I can accomplish with a full sized belt gun, I find the little guns distinctly uncomfortable. The weight of a 1911 or an N-frame Smith is something I find a comfort, and I don't mind carrying them all day. Much more than weight, barrel lengths of over 5.5 bother me if the day calls for any amount of riding or being seated. If not I'll choose a 6.5 or 7.5 inch barrel. Mostly, I like weights of 40 ounces or a little better, if the weather will allow me to wear the necessary clothes to conceal a gun of that size, or if the terrain is remote enough that concealment is unnecessary.
     
  14. ohioshooter

    ohioshooter Member

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    Well I'm 6'1 and 255 pounds and I have good solid holsters and belts for my guns. One gun in particular I carry is a Coonan .357 mag. Some would say it's heavy but to me it's comfortable so I guess I don't consider it to be heavy.
     
  15. huntsman

    huntsman Member

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    1LB in the pocket is too heavy, 3lb on the belt is doable but my sweet spot is 1-3/4-2lb on the belt and about 12 oz in the pocket. FWIW I weigh all my guns fully loaded instead of relying on factory specs.
     
  16. mavracer

    mavracer Member

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    For pocket carry I'd prefer 15-16 (442,LCR and PM9 are my faforite) I don't mind 20ish (will carry a Dick Special or CW45) but 24 is too much (sold the AMT backup 45 for the Kahr).
    For belt carry it's not so much weight for me, it's the fact that for Practical applications I don't gain much in the way of accuracy/speed above ~35 oz for a 45acp so why not carry my alloy 1911 instead of my steel frame.
     
  17. dook

    dook Member

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    The main disadvantage in weight when carrying concealed is that a gun over about 14 ounces bounces around a lot when I move and gives itself away. No problem in the winter, I carry heavier guns then.
     
  18. C0untZer0

    C0untZer0 Member

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    I actually did an experiment before I decided to buy a pocket pistol. I weighed out amounts of loose change at increasing amounts starting at 15 ounces.

    When I got to 21 ounces the weight in my pocket was a frequent reminder that it was there.

    The experiment also taught me the fallacy of the "A few ounces difference is not going to matter" argument. At some point an extra ounce does make a difference.

    Twenty three ounces in my pocket was annoying.

    Twenty five ounces total weight is my limit for pocket carry.

    Twenty seven ounces is barely tolerable for a quick trip down to the store but I personally can't carry 27 ounces in my pocket all day - if other people can, more power to them.


    I did this experiment because I didn't want to plunk down a bunch of money for a pocket pistol only to find out pocket carry turned out to be uncomfortable for me.

    My Rohrbaugh R9, loaded with seven rounds of 147gr ammo, sitting in a Nemesis pocket holster weighs in at 18.5 ounces. It disappears into my pocket and most of the times I can't tell it is there.

    In fact I started to develop a bad habit of putting my right hand on my right pocket to check for its presence. It was kind of an absent-minded gesture and I now consciously stop myself from checking.
     
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  19. chicharrones

    chicharrones needs more ammo

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    For a pocket gun? I agree with all that said more than 16 to 17 oz. empty is getting a bit heavy. Of course that could also just be bulk since my only experience pocket carrying a gun like that is a snub nose revolver. In looser pocket pants, you can sure feel the swing of a loaded 17 oz. snub nose if you try to move faster than a walk.
     
  20. iblong

    iblong Member

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    Not a fan of pocket carry 16 oz would be the limit.
    on the belt low 30's in single or double stack.
     
  21. rchery59

    rchery59 Member

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    I carry a SW model 60 in my rf pocket most of the time. I'll admit I wish it were a bit lighter. When I shoot it I like the weight.
     
  22. Zach S

    Zach S Member

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    Pocket carry is a non issue for me. I'm too skinny...

    As mentioned by a previous poster, profile plays as much a part as the weight.

    With a good belt and IWB holster, I can carry a 5" 1911 (44oz) all day. A glock 19 (30oz), not so much... it doesnt conceal as well, or as comfortably IWB. It being "grip heavy" contributes to this.

    Same G19 with a TLR1 (+4oz) in a blade tech OWB holster, and the weight isnt an issue. Concealment sucks though...

    I have a holster for a 1911 with a surefire x300 on order. Ordered it with standard belt loops and IWB loops... 44oz for the gun, I'll assume another 4 for the light... 48oz carried IWB may be interesting...

    *all weights were found in a quick google search. I assumed the x300 ultra weighed about the same as the TLR1.
     
  23. SDGlock23

    SDGlock23 Member

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    Yeap for pocket it's about 16oz and under. My CM40 weighs right around 16oz and it's pocketable, but it's about on the edge as far as weight and size.

    For OWB, if you've got a good belt it can "hide" gun weight a little bit, but I prefer to keep it under 32oz (2lbs) on the belt for all day carry, more is fine for shorter periods though.
     
  24. MCMXI
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    MCMXI Contributing Member

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    I can comfortably carry my Ruger KLCR in the front pocket of Docker dress pants and it weighs 17oz unloaded. It's a joy to carry OWB using a CrossBreed holster and ARES GEAR belt. I've tried carrying a number of SIGs, 1911s, XDs and Ruger revolvers but nothing comes close to the KLCR. I sometimes carry another in an ankle holster too. So in short, I don't want to carry a handgun that weighs much over 20oz loaded. The other great thing about the LCR/KLCR is that there's very little weight in the grip so it doesn't rotate away from the body at the belt line.
     
  25. Twiki357

    Twiki357 Member

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    As long as I don’t have to readjust my suspenders to keep it from pulling my pants down, then it’s not to heavy.
     
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