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Thread: Bought a new pocket pistol

  1. #1
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    I've been thinking about the need for a pocketable pistol for a while to augment other full size guns I carry CC and OC. My brother's outdoor Texas wedding next month gave me the final nudge. I don't want to keep my tux jacket on the whole time and roast, and there's no recognition of the right to OC in Texas, so tonight I bought a Kel-Tec P3AT.

    380 would not be my first choice for a defensive firearm, but it seems like the best possible compromise of size, capacity and caliber. Anyone else own/carry the P3AT or P32?

    I considered a Seecamp and a Ruger LCP, but the Kel-Tec literally disappears in a pocket. It's even thinner than I expected before I had handled one.

    They apparently make them blued, hard chrome and parkerized. Mine is the OD green frame with parkerized slide. It was the only parked model they had in stock.

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    I consider it a great choice. Some people don't care for any caliber that doesn't start with 4 but I have no concerns with mine. I have the chrome model and the general feeling that the chrome ones have less problems that the others. I have never had a single problem with mine and have run all sorts of ammo through it. As you say it dissappears in your pocket.

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    I prefer not to carry anything that doesn't begin with 4 and end with 5, but I can't fit a 1911 in my pocket without looking like I brought a friend to the party.

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    If the choice is there, then I'll carry the 45. And even THAT is only because John Moses Browning never designed a .46 !

    That said.... a Kel-Tec in your pocket is better than the Kimber back in your safe.


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    bobernet wrote:
    I considered a Seecamp and a Ruger LCP, but the Kel-Tec literally disappears in a pocket. It's even thinner than I expected before I had handled one.
    The LCP disappears in your pocket too. It is a Kel-Tec clone.

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    And you didn't consider a PF-9? similar size in 9mm.


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    thx997303 wrote:
    And you didn't consider a PF-9? similar size in 9mm.
    It's more than 50% heavier, almost an inch taller and half an inch longer.

    It would be a non-issue if I was going to carry it IWB or hanging on a belt. Slipped into a pocket, the PF-9 was just a tad too big for what I was after.

    I would never carry a 380 or small 9 as a primary pistol, but for the rare formal event where I need something to drop into a pants pocket, or for an occasional backup - size was the #1 factor - given that .380 or greater and reliability were out of the way.

    If I was going to take a small step up in size, I'd go to the Kahr PM4543 or the .40S&W version and be close to the PF-9 in size with a bigger round.

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    Regular Member thx997303's Avatar
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    Actually, it's .65" longer .8" taller and .11" wider.

    You were pretty right on with the weight.

    Sorry, I like to be exact.

    My question is, What's your life worth?

    A little discomfort? I would trust the 9mm over the .380 every time.

    Not saying you made the wrong choice or anything, I just would rather have the 9mm.

    Myself, I would put that one in a smart carry, or ankle holster, and only as a BUG or deep concealment. I wouldn't carry it in a pocket. But maybe that's just me.

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    You realize that a .380 is nothing but a slightly shorter 9mm, right?

    So, the only issue is penetration. The .380 +P ammo I've seen is certainly not on par with comparable 9mm +P ammo, but it penetrates well enough to get to a bad guy's vitals. At least enough that I'm comfortable carrying one for the few hours at a time that it might be my "only" pistol.

    The rest of the time I carry a 45. No 380 or 9mm would be my first choice. But either are good enough for occasional deep concealment.

    Thanks for your thoughts.

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    Regular Member thx997303's Avatar
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    Yep, I do realize that, and I don't trust it.

    If you don't trust the 9mm, then why would you trust a .380?

    That's just my opinion, of course, I carry a 9mm.

    Only because .45 is so expensive.

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    lol Some people and their caliber issues. I'd rather trust my life to a .22 then nothing, and I sure as hell wouldn't want to be shot by one, let alone a .380.

    Anyway I own a Kel-Tec P3AT as well, and mine has been a great little gun. 100% reliable, and surprisingly accurate for it's size. And yeah, I'd rather have a smaller .380 than a larger 9mm. My P3AT stands as a back-up to my .40 from time to time, and it goes alone with me when the .40 can't. Sometimes in a pocket, sometimes IWB with the belt clip.

    As far as the Ruger LCP goes, it's technically a little heavier and larger if I remember correctly, but not enough to be important. It's essentiallya P3AT clone with a better finish and a harder trigger pull. I don't like them because of the trigger pull, and the fact that Ruger tried to pass them off as their own original creation. That just doesn't sit right with me lol. A simple statement that they "improved on the design of an existing handgun" would have sufficed, even though I don't see it as much of an improvement.

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    DreQo wrote:
    lol Some people and their caliber issues. I'd rather trust my life to a .22 then nothing, and I sure as hell wouldn't want to be shot by one, let alone a .380.
    Absolutely! IMO any caliber of firearm is better than nothing.

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    Do I need to clarify? He trusts a .45 for a carry gun, and says he wouldn't carry a 9mm if it was a carry gun. My question is, when he has a larger caliber option, in similar size, then why would he go with the smaller caliber?

    Anyway, I wouldn't trust the .380 I've never seen it perform well ever.

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    thx997303 wrote:
    Do I need to clarify? He trusts a .45 for a carry gun, and says he wouldn't carry a 9mm if it was a carry gun. My question is, when he has a larger caliber option, in similar size, then why would he go with the smaller caliber?

    Anyway, I wouldn't trust the .380 I've never seen it perform well ever.
    If by similar size you mean LARGER SIZE, then the answer to your question is because he wants the smaller gun! The P3AT and clones are smaller than any larger caliber "compact handgun", period.

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    thx997303 wrote:
    Do I need to clarify? He trusts a .45 for a carry gun, and says he wouldn't carry a 9mm if it was a carry gun. My question is, when he has a larger caliber option, in similar size, then why would he go with the smaller caliber?
    A question which I already answered. 380 is the lowest defensive caliber I feel comfortable carrying. Size was the most important decision maker. The P3AT has the best reputation for reliability at its small size. I could have gone smaller, but wasn't willing to go down to a .32.

    As to my choice of normal carry guns, with a good holster and belt, a .45 carries every bit as easily as a 40, 9mm, 380, 32, etc. Why wouldn't I carry a 45? I also prefer the 1911 platform. It has a nice flat profile, it has the best trigger I've ever shot on any handgun. It was designed for, and operates most reliably with .45ACP ammo.

    With a .45 I don't have to rely on good expansion to "improve my odds" as I would with a smaller caliber.

    I have no intention of starting or participating in a caliber war. The reason I've ignored this thread for a while is that you seem to escalate many threads to a contentious emotional tone that isn't really warranted by the subject matter.

    Anyway, I wouldn't trust the .380 I've never seen it perform well ever.
    How much have you seen it "perform" at all? Are you a cop? In the military? Trauma surgeon? Forensic pathologist?

    Most of us have opinions about these things, right or wrong. But unless you have substantial experience in delivering, receiving or treating gunshot wounds, "I've never seen it perform well ever" is somewhat of a canard.

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    Emotional?? Contentious? None of this was meant in that way at all. And I'm sorry that I disagreed with you in another thread. I guess you did watch the video I made there, I was just annoyed at the way you made unfounded accusation against a quality firearm that you don't like.

    IMO, the larger size of the 9mm is well worth the extra power.

    And I have researched the subject of the .380, and have never seen anything saying it was worth anything.

    Anyway, I'm done, you answered my question.

    ETA: I wasn't meaning to start a caliber war. I wouldn't have even posted again, but was accused of being a caliber snob. I'm not, I carry a 9mm and think that the whole 9mm vs .40 vs .45 debate is pointless because the differences IMO are negligible with good ammo.


    Okay I'm done.

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    thx997303 wrote:
    Emotional?? Contentious? None of this was meant in that way at all. And I'm sorry that I disagreed with you in another thread. I guess you did watch the video I made there, I was just annoyed at the way you made unfounded accusation against a quality firearm that you don't like.

    IMO, the larger size of the 9mm is well worth the extra power.

    And I have researched the subject of the .380, and have never seen anything saying it was worth anything.

    Anyway, I'm done, you answered my question.

    ETA: I wasn't meaning to start a caliber war. I wouldn't have even posted again, but was accused of being a caliber snob. I'm not, I carry a 9mm and think that the whole 9mm vs .40 vs .45 debate is pointless because the differences IMO are negligible with good ammo.


    Okay I'm done.
    Well I mean .40 is the best....I'm just saying..

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    deleted by me, better as a PM.



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    Regular Member thx997303's Avatar
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    Thank you for sending it.

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    DreQo wrote:
    Well I mean .45 is the best....I'm just saying..
    :shock: That had to be an embarrassing typo ... fixed it for you though ...






    Bob Owens @ Bearing Arms (paraphrased): "These people aren't against violence; they're very much in favor of violence. They're against armed resistance."

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    deepdiver wrote:
    DreQo wrote:
    Well I mean .45 is the best....I'm just saying..
    :shock: That had to be an embarrassing typo ... fixed it for you though ...





    lol I actually don't own a .45 at the moment. I'd like to get a .45 1911, but more for the platform than the round itself. I can see a marked differenced between the .45 and 9mm, but not so much with the .40 and .45, other than bullet size, of course. It just seems that the .40 makes up for the .05 of an inch with the higher velocity creating more energy.

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    I have a Kel-tec 32 acp that I carry regularly. I also carry a Kimber Ultra carry 45acp. I have found that sometimes its better to have something small than nothing at all. I have had mine for 2yrs now and have run about 400 rounds through it and only small ware under the barrel on the frame. I only run round nose ammo through it. I was told that hollow points can jam. you need to run a wire down the back side of the mag to push the shorter rounds forward to feed better.

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    DreQo wrote:
    deepdiver wrote:
    DreQo wrote:
    Well I mean .45 is the best....I'm just saying..
    :shock: That had to be an embarrassing typo ... fixed it for you though ...





    lol I actually don't own a .45 at the moment. I'd like to get a .45 1911, but more for the platform than the round itself. I can see a marked differenced between the .45 and 9mm, but not so much with the .40 and .45, other than bullet size, of course. It just seems that the .40 makes up for the .05 of an inch with the higher velocity creating more energy.
    I don't necessarily disagree and as you know from my posts I'm not a caliber snob. I was just being funny...
    Bob Owens @ Bearing Arms (paraphrased): "These people aren't against violence; they're very much in favor of violence. They're against armed resistance."

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    deepdiver wrote:
    DreQo wrote:
    deepdiver wrote:
    DreQo wrote:
    Well I mean .45 is the best....I'm just saying..
    :shock: That had to be an embarrassing typo ... fixed it for you though ...





    lol I actually don't own a .45 at the moment. I'd like to get a .45 1911, but more for the platform than the round itself. I can see a marked differenced between the .45 and 9mm, but not so much with the .40 and .45, other than bullet size, of course. It just seems that the .40 makes up for the .05 of an inch with the higher velocity creating more energy.
    I don't necessarily disagree and as you know from my posts I'm not a caliber snob. I was just being funny...
    lol I know you were :P

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    WELL DONT CONSIDER THE RUGER 380 UNLESS YOU WANT PROBLEM AND THEY DONT STAND BEHIND THE PRODUCT. I HAVE EVEN TALKED TO THE CEO AND GOT NOWHERE.

    I BOUGHT THE GUN AND PAID 400.00 BECAUSE THERE IS ATHREE MONTH WAIT, SO LIKE EVERYTHING I BECAME IMPATIENT AND HAD TO HAVE ONE AND MY LOCAL GUN HAD ONE. IBROUGHT IT AND TOOK ITHOME AND PUT ITIN THE SAFE BECAUSE I WAS ON THE ROAD FOR TWO WEEKS AND I WAS CARRYING THE KEL-TEC 3AT. WELL WHEN I CAME HOME AND TOOK IT OUT OF THE BOX AND LOADED THE FIRST ROUND IN THE CHAMBER THE SLIDE DIDN'T SEATITSELF BACK FORWARDED ALL THE WAY. I BECAME VERY CONCERNED TO EVEN GO AND FIRE IT. I CALLED RUGER AND THEY SUGGESTED I SEND IT IN AND THAT IS WHERE IT HAS BEEN EVER SINCE. I CALLED THE CEO AND HE FINALLY RETURN MY CALL AND TOLD ME THERE IS A 2 TO 4 WEEK TURN AROUND. I TOLD HIM I JUST BOUGHT THE GUN AND ENCLOSED THE RECEIPT AND THAT IT WAS NEVER EVEN FIREDTO PROVE IT AND I SHOULD NOT HAVE TO WAIT 2 TO 4 WEEKS THAT THE GUN SHOULD BE REPLACES BUT NO WAY THEY SAID. THEYHAVE THE WORST CUSTOMER SERVICE AND THEY BRUSH YOU OFF. BY FAR BUY THE KEL TEC 3ATAND BE WORRY FREE, GREATHANDGUN

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