Smallest Concealed Carry .45acp?

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I carry a Taurus PT 145. It fits quite comfotably in my Kholster IWB holster. It holds 10+1 and allows a full grip comfortably. I was surprised as to how "soft" it kicked. My Taurus PT 1911 and Sig Sauer P220 carry in .45 actually kicked harder that the small PT145.
The wife will actually end up with the .38 442 snubby that I currently carry (and LOVE!), and I will carry the new .45.
BUT, I DO want her to be able to be comfortable with it also...not as a full time (exactly) but in a pinch.

Ahhh, if only it was possible for a 5 shot .45acp Jframe, I'd be happy. The Kframe 45's are just too large for CCW, so it's semi-auto for me.

So, I've kinda narrowed it down to the recommendations here...for a GOOD small .45acp Concealed Carry piece that will still be "okay" for the wife in an emergency.
.45 carry

Para Slim Hawg, "purported" to be the smallest 1911 .45 ACP. Easier to carry then my M&P 9 compact. Very manageable recoil IMO. US High Ride C. Rusty Sherrick holster. Comfy and great conceal holster.
Kahr P/CW45 or PM45

I agree with hmphargh that Kahr PM45 is a good choice. I have a Glock 30 SF (45 acp) that is 10+1.
The S&W M&P45C also caught my attention because it has a manual safety.

I've researched this whole pocket rocket thing at length for a good, compact .45 and ended up with my G30 SF.

If you compare barrel length to gun length/gun size ratio, Glocks provide the longest barrels given the guns dimensions which is good for .45 acp because some people will criticize that .45 acp only belongs in a 5'' barrel--1911 lovers...:rolleyes:
The critical dimension for me is the grip circumference at the trigger line.
This was where the Browning HiPower was so perfect for ME...the narrowing of the grip at the top. Here, I'll show it in this picture. (not HiPower, but you get the idea).

That is where the Kahr's (HiPowers, Revolvers, etc.) all fit me well, and where the Glock usually feels very Blocky to me. Even the small 1911's (I currently have a 4" Champion, short trigger)...still to BIG and not quite right for feel, especially to hand to the wife. I like the feel of the XDm 3.8 and the Sig250, but even they are a bit to big for the CCW that I want to do...(Arizona, shorts/shirt).

If John Browning was alive today he'd build me a 3" HiPower in .45acp about the same size as the Colt New Agent...only with HiPower's ergonomics/grip shape...and LIFE would be complete. :cool:

I guess I should look at the CZ's and see if they have a small CCW polymer with that HiPowerlike grip shape that makes the CZ's so sweet/popular.

It's funny, because the Taurus PT-145 is also PERFECT FIT, and almost small enough...but I'm "unsure" (-I'm being kind-) of Taurus customer service/QC. But, if Taurus can make a High Capacity .45acp that still fits...why can't others?

It's darn frustrating! ;) I LOVE the feel of the Kahr's for a small .45...but have heard a bit about maintenance issues. ARRRRRRGHHH!
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pt145 Mill-Pro

I carry a PT145 Millenium Pro with a stainless upper in a Crossbreed holster at about 5 o'clock. I was a little concerned about recoil in a small, polymer-framed handgun. That is, until I actually fired it. I don't know how they did it, but IMHO this gun is pleasant to shoot. I use only 230 gr FMJ. It still amazes me how they manage to get 10 rounds of .45 in this gun. It's a handfull of whoop-a++.

As far as reliability, I've put more than 500 rounds through it. The very first two shots I took with it were FTF. Break-in, I guess, because every one since then has gone "bang".

The only thing I've had to change on it were the sights. As a matter of personal preference, I prefer the 3-dot sights over the 2-dot. I was able to adapt a set of inexpensive Wilson 1911 sights. There's a write-up somewhere on this board about it. I got the idea from another board member here.

As far as a holster, the Crossbreed is very comfortable, and reasonably priced. You can spend a lot more for a lot less holster (I have). Try it, you'll like it. Of course, ymmv.
Dang! Between the Slim Hawg and the Colt New Agent, they're starting to get 1911's down into a REAL CCW weapon! Nice pics!

I've never understood that pov. I've heard many people saying glock 19's are one of the greatest ccw sized weapons out there. I'm an average (read: no rolls around the belt) sized guy and a glock 19 makes me look like I have a midget under my shirt unless I dress like a bum. I've carried commander sized 1911's with no problem in a variety of holsters and wardrobes. IMO the best ccw sized weapon for me that I've ever handled was a bob-tailed commander.

My next 1911 purchase will be something along the lines of the one below. No ambi safety that adds more width, my index finger works just fine. Bob-tailed, blued frame and slide. Nothing fancy just de-horned, add some exotic and ultra thin grips (or some of wicked grip's stuff) and a decent trigger. That's my current wishlist.
Have you seen the Taurus 24/7 PT Pro Comp. .45 acp? If it's as dependable as my 9mm that is. A little heavy for a comp., and my 9mm was very tight to begin with but has been extremely dependable. Not a ftf or fte in over a yr. of moderate to heavy use. Some people say I just lucked out and got one of the good ones. Don't know how to respond to that. Could be true. I only know mine has always gone bang. So far.
I carry a Kimber UCII in a belt holster (I don't like IWB and don't carry that way.) 25 oz empty, 3-inch barrel and probably the most accurate gun I own for SD. I got the all-black model for under $700 NIB at a gun show ... I love it ...
My recommendation is none of the above until she's tried them. Not just a comfort issue; Subcompact .45's are difficult to control, and if it's to be a defensive gun, she needs to be able to handle it one handed and off balance. Most likely she cannot; My little sister is an avid shooter, she even competes with a Witness Limited in 10mm. Still, she cannot handle my S&W CS-45 authoritively enough for it to run reliably. It short cycles on her due to limp wristing, as her wrists and hands simply aren't strong enough. To get an idea of where her strength lies on the spectrum, she is 5'7", 140 pounds and very active with such things as horseback riding. In other words, pretty strong for a girl and very familiar with firearms, yet still can't handle a sub compact .45 under less than ideal conditions.

Just my $0.02
(I don't like IWB and don't carry that way.)

I couldn't agree more. I don't like it at all. I don't like wearing baggy pants or pants 2" too wide. I liked a crossbreed supertuck the best of all that I tried and it was relatively comfortable, but my girlfriend said it makes me look like one butt cheek was 1" too wide. Why bother going IWB when I can have a high rise belt holster that is just as concealable with a short barrel?

My usual carry attire is a Kimber Pro CDP II in one of these:


Edit: It has a neat little leather flap that pushes the barrel out just enough to keep the butt tight against me. It retains nicely and I am able to do yardwork, sit and stand with no issues. Some guy on the website claims his glock never left this holster when he was involved in a motorcycle accident. I find that one a bit hard to believe. I was in a bike wreck and it knocked the shoes off my feet, my sunglasses through my shattered visor, everything out of my pockets and a spyderco police edition out of my pocket and through some guy's front window 80 feet away. :scrutiny:
Pick your flavor of 3"-4.25" 1911's and dress it to suit your needs. I personally like the 3 inchers for concealing, just easier for me.

Wish I could get my wife to carry something...
AWWWW! Me like the 1911 compacts!:what: I am saving up and planning to trade in my Taurus PT145 for a Kimber Ultra Carry II.
Kimber makes some sweet little .45s, including my ultra dependable, first generation Ultra CDP.

When my wife finally decided to get her CCW (after a lady she knows was brutally attacked) I let her try all my handguns.

Surprisingly . . . or maybe not . . . she rejected all my autos, from the little Kel-Tec P32 on up, including the Kimber. She thought the slides a little hard to have to deal with under stress.

Instead, she fell in love with the revolvers, especially my two 3" ones, a Model 65 S&W K-frame .357 and a custom chopped barrel Model 25-2 in .45ACP. Of the two though, she liked the smaller Model 65 the best.

Still not light and concealable enough though, I found her a S&W Model 37 Airweight J-frame . . . with a THREE INCH barrel. 14 oz. of serious concealable protection indeed!

Best of all, she shot it extremely well. Simple, foolproof, easy to shoot . . . it became her favorite handgun. As a firearms instructor for our sheriff's dept told her, she shoots it better than many of the department deputies.

THAT'S finding the right handgun that your loved one will have confidence in and actually use and carry.

Guys CANNOT choose a handgun for their significant other. They approach it with a more open mind than we do, and choose a handgun for really practical reasons.

I recommend guys and gals check out the website, "the cornered" . . . written by a lady moderator emeritus of this forum. It is eye-opening indeed!
I agree with hmphargh that Kahr PM45 is a good choice. I have a Glock 30 SF (45 acp) that is 10+1.
The S&W M&P45C also caught my attention because it has a manual safety.

I've researched this whole pocket rocket thing at length for a good, compact .45 and ended up with my G30 SF.

If you compare barrel length to gun length/gun size ratio, Glocks provide the longest barrels given the guns dimensions which is good for .45 acp because some people will criticize that .45 acp only belongs in a 5'' barrel--1911 lovers...:rolleyes:

I just got through searching for a good large caliber CC piece in the 6-7" size range and I decided on the G36, which I carry IWB with a Blackhawk holster. I liked the way it felt over the G30, M&Ps, Smiths, & XDs. I kind of preferred the way the small 1911's felt in my hand, but liked the longer barrel in the same size package, and the less weight, of the G36. And, with the Pearce +1 extension, you can carry 7+1. I don't feel undergunned when I carry it.

Recoil wise, I don't think the G36 is that bad. Definitely more than my PT92 9mm, but I think the G36 is more comfortable to shoot than either my PF9 or LCP.
I have both a Kahr PM9 and a PM45. There really isn't that much difference in the recoil. But the PM45 is almost as big in overall length as a Colt Officer's model. The grip is about 3/4 of an inch shorter and much smaller in diameter. It is a great CCW.
My Taurus PT145Pro is comparable in size to my Glock 27 with Pearce grip extension. Width is comparable too. FYI, I use Fobus paddle holster and it is the SAME holster for Springfield XD45.

Point to consider is the grip size. My Glock 30 grip is too big for my wife. The PT145Pro grip is fine for her hand size.

As for reliability, I have shot several thousands of various factory and reloads (FMJ/plated/lead) and it has yet to jam, FTF, FTE. In fact, I have tried to make it stovepipe by limp wristing and it cycles fine. The feed angle from magazine to ramp/chamber is great and 200 LSWC hops into the chamber better than 230 LRN.

Do give it a try and shoot it at a range if you can - and compare to other 45s. Wife likes the 1911s, but they would be too big for carry. And PT145Pro has 10 round double stack magazine.
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