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Semi or Revolver for Concealed Carry?

Started by Lee_S, 12/28/2011 05:10AM
Posted 12/28/2011 05:10AM | Edited 12/28/2011 05:10AM Opening Post
I let one of the maggotry get within 21-feet the other day and then pissed him off by not having any money to give him. He wandered on without incident, but it did make me think about self-defense a little more.

If I were to get a permit, would a semi-auto or revolver make more sense? I'm thinking a hammerless snubby would be simplest and best. The little .380 and 9mm semis might be worthwhile, but then you've got safeties to fumble with and slides to rack. However, the skinny pistols might be easier to cart around and conceal. The idea of carting around a firearm all
over the place is aggravating when my fist might work just fine.

I have several telescopes, but none are semi-APO, APO, or in anyway valuable.
Posted 12/28/2011 05:27AM #1
If you carry a semi-auto have one in the chamber, racking a slide during a draw is time consuming and dangerous. If you are going to carry, the one to carry is the one you feel the most comfortable with.
Posted 12/28/2011 05:29AM #2
I like to have 15 rounds myself, so a 9mm is the better choice for me. 5-6 shot revolvers are OK, but if you really got in to a bad spot, reloading is not easy under pressure. If you are out gunned by your assailant you are in trouble.

But, be aware, having a gun is good protection but actually using it when it is needed is another thing. Be well trained, be very wary to pull it and never to threaten, only to protect yourself or others. No one should try to be a dirty Harry.

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Posted 12/28/2011 02:41PM #3
Go to your local range. Most public ranges have an assortment of pistols to rent. See what you like and then get that for your own protection.

Determining what fits you in terms of concealed carry is like trying on a fine suit. You have to be comfortable while being able to bring the weapon to bear when needed. It took me several months to workout a comfortable carry weapon. Even so, I use different pistols/holster combos for different dress. My carry weapons range from a Ruger LCP .380, Bersa Thunder .380, Walther PPS .40. Glock 27 .40, or a Sig Sauer P226 .40. I mostly carry the P226 or Glock 27 in an outside waistband Galco holster under a light jacket.

Another thing to do is to practice, practice, practice. Ammo is relatively cheap so practice whenever you can to become proficient with your weapon of choice. Also, learn your state's handgun laws like the back of your hand. Keep your head up and keep good situational awareness. Try to avoid confrontation whenever possible.

Scott Busby
A.K.A. Reconair

Carpe Noctum

Mortal as I am, I know that I am born for a day. But when I follow at my pleasure the serried multitude of the stars in their circular course, my feet no longer touch the earth.
- Ptolemy,c.150 AD
Posted 12/29/2011 02:59AM #4
Hi Lee,

I picked up a Ruger LCP .380 ACP, it's an amazingly small yet potent little side arm. I have had the opportunity to fire a number of different side arms over the years, .45 acp, .40. 10mm, .357, .38 spl, 9mm, in other words a bunch of different calibers & ballistic characteristics. In a word when I had the opportunity to take my new LCP to the range I was 'impressed'! @ 10M single hand controlled aim & shoot - a 3" group with ease. Same distance rapid fire the grouping was still with in 8". 20M was pretty close to the same, not much point in going out any further as the LCP is not really a choice for longer distance defensive fire.

Light weight, fits pretty much concealed in the palm of my hand, drops in my back pocket like a wallet, jacket pocket hardly noticeable. I carry 1 in the chamber with the 6 shot magazine, total of 7. Long double action trigger pull on the first shot, concealed hammer, no safety.... pretty much the same as most DA revolvers. Over all out of different side arms I have carried over the years the LCP is the most comfortable & easy to access. As far as ballistics is concerned for an immediate close range life or death type encounter it will get the job done. In this day and age your not very likely to need much more to ward off an attacker or assailant. Most criminals are on the look out for someone present a weak or frightened persona when they approach, or attack. Getting hot lead thrown in their direction hit or miss will cause a reaction of immediate retreat & flee. Criminals are looking for defenseless soft targets, not armed hard targets. If the first shots don't send them retreating hit or not you'd better make the follow up shots 1 hit lethal shots because the assailant is high, crazy, or both and extremely dangerous. At close range the .380 ACP round will get the job done about as well as a 9mm. For one shot stopping power both rounds are lacking without precision accuracy.

Actually had an encounter with 2 thugs this past summer while getting ready to mow an abandon commercial property in the city. The usual approach running the mouth about can you spare me some cash, I need a job man, hey just give us some money @&^%$#! All the while trying to close distance after I stood my ground & clearly stated back off. Didn't go for the side arm, I have an extendable stun baton (out to 24" with 750,000 volts) under in easy reach. Use if for the occasional aggressive stray that seem to think I'm a chew toy............ worked real good on thugs too! Dropped him like a sack of wet cement, the other one turned & quickly ran away.

Lee, if you decide to get a permit & carry make yourself very familiar with the operations of your side arm, know the laws & never feel over confidence because you are carrying. You need to still use some situational awareness and posture to keep yourself from being in a situation in the first place. Learn your weapon & proper defensive posture so you are less like to ever have to use it. Never plan on just brandishing it to detour a thug, if you feel the necessity to present it, then plan on using it. Good luck in your choice & be safe!


Posted 12/29/2011 09:18AM | Edited 12/29/2011 09:37AM #5
Either a .38 snub ( I like the stainless S&W Chiefs special) or a good .380 ( a stainless Walther PPK) will work fine, ( I have carried both). A study I once read that either gun is about as big as anyone likes to actually carry especially in the summer months.The revolver has the advantage of being a no-brainer to operate, just pull the trigger, no need to remember if a round is in the chamber or the safety is on. also being stainless, there is no worry about getting either wet or sweaty and both of the guns I mentioned are built like a tank, they will last a lifetime.
Also, I prefer a hammer on a revolver, safer to operate (I have carried the hammerless .38 snubby, but don,t like it as much), and the hammer will not snag on clothing if you use your thumb as a shield over the hammer when drawing from your pocket.
Posted 12/31/2011 12:23AM #6
Hi Lee.....I think the answer that makes the most sense is "Yes" (either of those will do nicely). I consider self defense handguns the way my wife thinks of which shoes to wear. If the threat is minimal - say I'm just going for an evening walk - the S&W Model 642 Revolver fills that bill pretty well. It is very concealable and light, and fairly easy to control even with +P ammo. The problem with it is it has only 5 shots. The next step up for me is a Glock 26, the baby Glock. 10 Rounds of 9mm, small frame, although a bit wide with its double stack mag when you carry it. In a higher risk environment (if I can't just stay home) I like a full frame Glock - and would carry either my 17 or 34, or my 35 if I wanted to carry a 40 Cal. I really like the extra capacity these pistols offer, and I'm torn between the controlability of the 9mm and the extra power of the 40 Cal. For Semi-Auto, I'm just sold on the Glock. The action is "revolver like" in action - very simple (no safety to operate), and they are just stone cold reliable.

The advice others have offerred is much more important than the hardware selection however - Get good training, and train often! Know the operations of any gun you carry inside and out, and practice, practice, practice with it often. Practice the draw, repeated fire,and reloading. You should be able to draw and fire two shots on target (inside the size of your fist) at a range of 21 feet within 2 seconds - 1.5 seconds is better (that is about the length of time that a person can close 21 feet and be on you). I have an indoor range a few miles from work and can use the LEO side of the range to practice my draw and rapid fire - at least monthly (more when time permits). When and if you ever have to pull that weapon - your life, the lives of innocent people all around you, and the life of the person that you prerceive as a threat are on the line - be proficient at what you are doing! Know your laws and obligations as a CCW holder - mistakes will kill you or send you to prison in place of the bad guy. Do you really still want to carry?

Posted 01/04/2012 04:46PM #7
I usually carry a S&W 637 5-shot revolver. It's simple, lightweight, and pretty much 100% reliable. I rarely ever carry my Springfield XD9 17 shot semiauto because my wife may want it, and it's too heavy for me to comfortably carry. I have it for HD mostly. I'm not a big fan of the pocket semi's like Ruger LCPs, I'd prefer something at least the size of a Glock 26 if I got one for EDC. For now I'm satisfied with the lightweight snubnose, as I hope never to get in a gunfight, it's enough for me as a last resort SD tool.
Posted 01/11/2012 05:00AM #8
By their very design revolvers are the surest bet, but a Glock is the next best thing. The safety is in the trigger, no lever to move, very quick response time. Forget .380 and 9mm, go for the gusto, .40 S&W. Real stopping power there.

A good day to Golf is a better day to Fish.
Government large enough to give you what you want is also large enough to take what you have.
Giving up freedom for security will get you neither.

Posted 01/17/2012 05:21AM #9
In honor of Dr. Martin Luther King, I meditated on race relations today and then celebrated by going to a minor league ice hockey match far out in the Atlanta burbs and visiting the Bass Pro Shop to look at firearms. We briefly considered stopping at Applebee's on the way home, but since someone got shot there last night just for rooting for the 49ers we passed.

I briefly held a the Taurus 738, Beretta Nano, Walther PPK, and Bersa Thunder. I am a little concerned about not having a place for the pinky on the Taurus, Beretta, and similarly sized Ruger LCR. Do you guys with Ruger LCRs and the like find it distracting to shoot such small firearms?

I liked the Walther PPK and Bersa Thunder. They both fit the hand well. But, they do have safeties. All were much smaller than snubby revolvers. Of the teeny-tiny guns, the Beretta Nano had very nice sights and no safety to fumble with. The Bersa and Taurus were both fairly inexpensive and would be easy to fit in the budget within a month or two.

I have several telescopes, but none are semi-APO, APO, or in anyway valuable.