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Posted: 2/10/2006 7:45:16 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/10/2006 3:53:12 PM EDT by triburst1]
I am preparing to purhcase a new back up gun. I currently carry a GLOCK 19 as my primary weapon and a Kel-Tec P-32 and as a BUG. I will keep the P-32 for times when I can't carry a larger BUG and may also sometimes carry it as a 3rd gun. I want something more powerful than the .32ACP and have narrowed down my choices to three weapons: GLOCK 26, Kahr PM9, and S&W 642.

This gun will be carried in an ankle holster, in a front pants pocket holster, and in an outside coat pocket.

A back up gun, by defintion, is a compromise, and these three weapons all have their strengths and weaknesses.

SIZE/CONCEALABILITY
The Kahr would be the easiest to carry and is the most compact overall. The 642 and the PM9 are about the same weight and close on heigth with the PM9 being considerably thinner and somewhat shorter. The GLOCK is larger in all dimensions than the other two and about 30% heavier. I think the Kahr would easily be the best for pants pocket carry, and would be marginally better than the 642 for ankle carry. The 642 would have the edge in coat pocket carry.

SHOOTABILITY
The G26 wins this one hands down. The larger grip and extra weight always helps, but perhaps more importantly it has the exact same maunual of arms as the G19 that I have carried for years. The Kahr beats out the 642 for second place as it has less recoil and is much faster to reload.

RELIABILITY
I think this would be a toss up between the GLOCK and the 642.

COMPATABILITY
The G26 uses the same ammo, mags, and holsters I already have for the G19. The PM9 would use the same ammo as my primary weapon. The 642 would require new holsters, reloading devices, and another caliber of ammo in the stash.

B.U.G. as PRIMARY
If I was going to carry one of these as a primary weapon, it would no doubt be the G26. Besides being easier to shoot under stress it offers larger ammo capacity holding more than twice as many rounds as the 642. It is also the fastest to reload and can use large capacity mags fro reloads. While holding fewer rounds, the Kahr is still quite fast to reload. The 642 would be a nightmare to reload under stress. It takes much more time and complicated moves using speed loaders or speed strips that the magazine fed autos. I would feel very comfortable with the GLOCK as a primary weapon, somewhat comfortable with the Kahr, and uncomfortable with the Smith



The G26 would be the more effective weapon than the PM9 or 642, but would the larger size and increased weight force me into carrying my P-32 when I could have been carrying the PM9 or 642.

I would like to hear some suggestions of others, especially those who have carried one or more of these guns.

Does anyone carry a GLOCK 26 in a pants pocket holster? Is it too heavy? Is it too thick?

Link Posted: 2/10/2006 2:41:55 PM EDT
fixed
Link Posted: 2/10/2006 2:49:59 PM EDT
Have never carried a Glock 26, but I do have a Glock 30 now as my primary CCW... Once I got it I was addicted and do intend on buying a Glock 26 next week if funds permit. I like the overall feel of the Glock 26 and as you pointed out, it funktions the same as your primary carry piece. Thats one advantage I do indeed find important and my main reason for selling my XD sub to buy a Glock 26. I got rid of my Para Warthog for the G30 and liked it so much I want its little brother for a deep carry piece.
Link Posted: 2/10/2006 5:06:19 PM EDT
Link Posted: 2/10/2006 6:17:45 PM EDT

Originally Posted By ikor:
I have never used the PM9 but did own a P40 for a couple of years. I have also owned a G26 and G27 and have carried various J frame S&Ws for several decades now. I must say that I have always come back to the "hammerless" .38 snub (like the 642) in every single case where I have strayed while looking for a pocket or backup handgun. Yes, the G26 is a better package, no doubt, but no way it is as easy to carry as the airweight revolver, and for a second or third gun "easy to carry" is a must have, IMO.



Yes, the greater size and weight is the one drawback of the G26. If the 642 carries so easily, the PM9 should be at least as handy, if not more so. Same weight, shorter, thinner, more powerful, more ammo, and more user friendly.
Link Posted: 2/10/2006 7:42:07 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/10/2006 7:52:43 PM EDT by vaughn4380]
I can give you my experience with the G26 and a S&W model 37 (J frame), which is very similar to the 642 you are talking about. I love both and carry both on a regular basis. However, I have found neither one by itself works all of the time, but the combination of the two allows me to select the perfect one depending on what I need.

I find myself carrying the J frame when I am off duty and do not want a lot of extra weight, or summer months when it is hot and clothing is at a minimum. It slides in a front pocket of any pair of pants I own, including jean shorts in the summer, the odd shape and thin frame allow the pockets of the pants I wear to hide the outline very well. I can also get a full grip on the handle while it is in my pocket. It fits without printing in a front pocket of a pair of normal wranglers, which tend to be a bit tight. It does not weigh enough to pull my pants down when I am wearing a belt, this includes times when I wear kahkis, like dockers. It fits so well in the front pocket of any normal pair of pants that I have quit carrying it on my ankle, the extra time and awkward manuevering to get to your ankle does not make sense when these things fit in the front pocket so well. However, front pocket carry makes access to both hands difficult and this may be something to consider.

The modern J frames handle +P loads, with which I feel comfortable carrying and do not feel undergunned on a quick trip to pick up a pizza at night. I previously used the J frame to back-up my G19 but I finally broke down and bought a G26 as I will talk about later. I constantly practice reloading drills with my J frame and can honestly say that with practice reloading does not take very long and becomes second nature, I carry reloads using bianchi speed strips and reload two rounds at a time from the strip. I also do not find the recoil to be excessive with +P rounds. If wieght is a factor, the J frame is the way to go. I would not worry about the difference in ammunition or holsters, you will need to buy a pocket holster or ankle holster regardless of what you buy, unless you have been carrying your G19 on your ankle.

Now for the G26, I have carried this in the front pocket and it will fit in the larger front pockets of jeans and kahkis using the desantis nemesis. It actually fits very well in dockers front pockets. I find I am not able to get a full grip on the handle while it is in my pocket, no matter what pair of pants I am wearing. It also weighs enough that it pulls down the side of my pants that correspond to the pocket I am carrying it in. It is heavy and you will notice it in your pocket, unlike the J. It will also print slightly due to its thickness. I have never been "made" but I have been worried while it is in my pocket. One time I was really worried while I was in a buffet line, while looking down at the food I was able to see that the top of my pocket was not closed due to the thickness of the G26, this allowed me a great view of the handle of the G26 by looking straight down into the pocket. I was seriously concerned that the person behind me in line would be able to do the same. (I now know I should have caught this before I left th house and I now check for this every morning, but I still thought I would share my personal experience with you) The G26 does carry well in the front pocket of duty style pants issued or required by most police departments.

Some of the guys I work with carry a G26 as a BUG in a shoulder holster under a jacket under their weak side arm (we are required to wear suits however so this would not be ideal for on duty officers). This actually works very well and is accessible to both hands in case of an emergency. It also allows easy access seated in a car should you need it. However, you will never be able to take off your jacket while at a restaurant without creating a scene.

I have also found that the G26 carries well on the ankle and this is my prefered method on duty. My G19 rides on my hip of course, and the G26 is on my ankle, the logic being that when you need a back up things are at their worst and access to you ankle won't be a problem. I also do not mind putting my G26 on my ankle as glocks are pretty much impervious to rust and an ankle gun will get wet in the snow and rain. I prefer to carry the glock on duty because of the similar design of my primary gun, higher capacity than the J frame, and ability to take the G19 mags eliminating the need to carry back up gun ammo. For on duty use, the G26 beats the heck out of the J frame due to these reasons. It took about a week to get used to it, but once I did, the ankle holster did not bother me or hinder my abilities (i.e.running).

I find the G26 is just too heavy and thick to slip into a pocket for a pizza run, especially durring the summer. If I carry the G26 off duty it is in a belt holster of some type, with a cover garment for concealment.

These are my personal experiences, I hope they are helpful !
Link Posted: 2/10/2006 7:54:27 PM EDT

Originally Posted By vaughn4380:
I can give you my experience with the G26 and a S&W model 37 (J frame), which is very similar to the 642 you are talking about. I love both and carry both on a regular basis. However, I have found neither one by itself works all of the time, but the combination of the two allows me to select the perfect one depending on what I need.

I find myself carrying the J frame when I am off duty and do not want a lot of extra weight, or summer months when it is hot and clothing is at a minimum. It slides in a front pocket of any pair of pants I own, including jean shorts in the summer, the odd shape and thin frame allow the pockets of the pants I wear to hide the outline very well. I can also get a full grip on the handle while it is in my pocket. It fits without printing in a front pocket of a pair of normal wranglers, which tend to be a bit tight. It does not weigh enough to pull my pants down when I am wearing a belt, this includes times when I wear kahkis, like dockers. It fits so well in the front pocket of any normal pair of pants that I have quit carrying it on my ankle, the extra time and awkward manuevering to get to your ankle does not make sense when these things fit in the front pocket so well. However, front pocket carry makes access to both hands difficult and this may be something to consider.

The modern J frames handle +P loads, with which I feel comfortable carrying and do not feel undergunned on a quick trip to pick up a pizza at night. I previously used the J frame to back-up my G19 but I finally broke down and bought a G26 as I will talk about later. I constantly practice reloading drills with my J frame and can honestly say that with practice reloading does not take very long and becomes second nature, I carry reloads using bianchi speed strips and reload two rounds at a time from the strip. I also do not find the recoil to be excessive with +P rounds. If wieght is a factor, the J frame is the way to go. I would not worry about the difference in ammunition or holsters, you will need to buy a pocket holster or ankle holster regardless of what you buy, unless you have been carrying your G19 on your ankle.

Now for the G26, I have carried this in the front pocket and it will fit in the larger front pockets of jeans and kahkis using the desantis nemesis. It actually fits very well in dockers front pockets. I find I am not able to get a full grip on the handle while it is in my pocket, no matter what pair of pants I am wearing. It also weighs enough that it pulls down the side of my pants that correspond to the pocket I am carrying it in. It is heavy and you will notice it in your pocket, unlike the J. It will also print slightly due to its thickness. I have never been "made" but I have been worried while it is in my pocket. One time I was really worried while I was in a buffet line, while looking down at the food I was able to see that the top of my pocket was not closed due to the thickness of the G26, this allowed me a great view of the handle of the G26 by looking straight down into the pocket. I was seriously concerned that the person behind me in line would be able to do the same. (I now know I should have caught this before I left th house and I now check for this every morning, but I still thought I would share my personal experience with you) The G26 does carry well in the front pocket of duty style pants issued or required by most police departments.

Some of the guys I work with carry a G26 as a BUG in a shoulder holster under a jacket under their weak side arm (we are required to wear suits however so this would not be ideal for on duty officers). This actually works very well and is accessible to both hands in case of an emergency. It also allows easy access seated in a car should you need it. However, you will never be able to take off your jacket while at a restaurant without creating a scene.

I have also found that the G26 carries well on the ankle and this is my prefered method on duty. My G19 rides on my hip of course, and the G26 is on my ankle, the logic being that when you need a back up things are at their worst and access to you ankle won't be a problem. I also do not mind putting my G26 on my ankle as glocks are pretty much impervious to rust and an ankle gun will get wet in the snow and rain. I prefer to carry the glock on duty because of the similar design of my primary gun, higher capacity than the J frame, and ability to take the G19 mags eliminating the need to carry back up gun ammo. For on duty use, the G26 beats the heck out of the J frame due to these reasons. It took about a week to get used to it, but once I did, the ankle holster did not bother me or hinder my abilities (i.e.running).

I find the G26 is just too heavy and thick to slip into a pocket for a pizza run, especially durring the summer. If I carry the G26 off duty it is in a belt holster of some type, with a cover garment for concealment.

These are my personal experiences, I hope they are helpful !



Thanks for your insight. Your post was very helpful, but confirms what I was afraid of. I may indeed need to GET BOTH.
Link Posted: 2/10/2006 8:01:19 PM EDT
LOL, Glad I could help, I never really meant to tell you to get both, but instead list out the pros and cons I have found with each. However, if you are like the rest of us here, you will end with both anyways. Just pace yourself and buy the one that fulfills most of your needs first, than save up and buy the other one later.
Link Posted: 2/10/2006 8:02:51 PM EDT

Originally Posted By vaughn4380:
LOL, Glad I could help, I never really meant to tell you to get both, but instead list out the pros and cons I have found with each. However, if you are like the rest of us here, you will end with both anyways. Just pace yourself and buy the one that fulfills most of your needs first, than save up and buy the other one later.



I probably will end up with both eventually. I could almost buy a used G26 and a new 642 for the price of the Kahr.
Link Posted: 2/10/2006 9:25:01 PM EDT
Kel-tec is showing off a new single stack 9mm. it's the PF-9

http://www.kel-tec.com/pf9pr.htm

I'm hunting for a backup to my 19 also. the S&W 340 looks promising but the price sucks. and before you ask why the 340 and not the 642 it's because all my handguns are .357 or 9mm at the moment. I've decided any revolver I buy will be in .357.

I don't really care for the 26. they're great guns, I just can't seem to warm up to them.

I think as soon as I can find one I'm gonna pick up a PF-9 and hold off on the 340.
Link Posted: 2/11/2006 5:53:07 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/11/2006 5:53:44 AM EDT by triburst1]

Originally Posted By Luvman:
Kel-tec is showing off a new single stack 9mm. it's the PF-9

http://www.kel-tec.com/pf9pr.htm

I'm hunting for a backup to my 19 also. the S&W 340 looks promising but the price sucks. and before you ask why the 340 and not the 642 it's because all my handguns are .357 or 9mm at the moment. I've decided any revolver I buy will be in .357.

I don't really care for the 26. they're great guns, I just can't seem to warm up to them.

I think as soon as I can find one I'm gonna pick up a PF-9 and hold off on the 340.



Very interesting. That is the first I've heard about the PF-9. It looks like Kel-Tec is going to give Kahr a run for their money. The PF-9 appears to be halfway between the size of the P9 and PM9, but lighter and thinner. It looks like it will also be less than half the price the Kahr pistols. I really like the Kahrs, but they seem to be priced much higher than their competitors. The Kahrs are even higher than the similarly sized Sig Sauer P239. I just noticed on the Kahr site, that they now have a K9 and a T9 that are over $900.00 MSRP.
Link Posted: 2/11/2006 9:34:32 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/11/2006 9:37:30 AM EDT by Camel]
I vote 642. Its light and is a nice BUG for the pocket or IWB.

The G26 just isn't that much smaller or lighter than the G19 and would almost say its too big and heavy for pocket carry.

Since I found the 642 and 340 a couple years ago I have a hard time recomending anything else for a BUG or deep concealment. Obviously a P32 or P3AT are going to be the ultimate in concealment, and they are definatly worth having, but they are less reliable and less powerful than the 642 and 340. The 642 and 340 are the best compromise in size, weight and caliber for a BUG.

ETA: The 642 is also the cheapest. You should be able to get one for around $300 or so.
Link Posted: 2/11/2006 9:39:03 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Camel:
I vote 642. Its light and is a nice BUG for the pocket or IWB.

The G26 just isn't that much smaller or lighter than the G19 and would almost say its too big and heavy for pocket carry.

Since I found the 642 and 340 a couple years ago I have a hard time recomending anything else for a BUG or deep concealment. Obviously a P32 or P3AT are going to be the ultimate in concealment, and they are definatly worth having, but they are less reliable and less powerful than the 642 and 340. The 642 and 340 are the best compromise in size, weight and caliber for a BUG.



I think the 642 would be an excellent mid-range concealment weapon since I already have a G19 and P-32. I think the PM9 might be even better as it even smaller than the 642 yet more powerful and easier to shoot and reload.
Link Posted: 2/11/2006 9:48:51 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/11/2006 9:57:12 AM EDT by Camel]

Originally Posted By triburst1:
I think the 642 would be an excellent mid-range concealment weapon since I already have a G19 and P-32. I think the PM9 might be even better as it even smaller than the 642 yet more powerful and easier to shoot and reload.



Yeah, it would be easier to reload and slightly more powerful. I like the reliability of the revolver and it feels more solid than the small semis to me.

I got the 340 to bridge the gap between my G19 and P32 and it fits that role perfectly. Although I plan to upgrade to a P3AT from the P32 sometime.

The 642 is less expensive than the Khar, but a couple hundred bucks shouldn't be the deciding factor for a CCW piece if you want the Khar.
Link Posted: 2/11/2006 10:16:05 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Camel:

Originally Posted By triburst1:
I think the 642 would be an excellent mid-range concealment weapon since I already have a G19 and P-32. I think the PM9 might be even better as it even smaller than the 642 yet more powerful and easier to shoot and reload.



Yeah, it would be easier to reload and slightly more powerful. I like the reliability of the revolver and it feels more solid than the small semis to me.

I got the 340 to bridge the gap between my G19 and P32 and it fits that role perfectly. Although I plan to upgrade to a P3AT from the P32 sometime.

The 642 is less expensive than the Khar, but a couple hundred bucks shouldn't be the deciding factor for a CCW piece if you want the Khar.



I have also considered upgrading my P-32 to the P3AT, but I have heard many reports that they are not as reliable.
Link Posted: 2/11/2006 11:31:13 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/11/2006 11:33:05 AM EDT by VBC]
It's hard to beat the PM9 for a hideout gun. Find one NIB for $499, put a Hogue Handall, Jr. grip on it for $9, and you got a fantastic little gun.

Of course that's just my opinion. The G26 is a brick in comparison. No experience with the S&W.

Although for front pants pocket carry, even the PM9 is pushing it on size. It'll work, but I like it better on the belt. Coat pocket carry is a snap though.
Link Posted: 2/11/2006 6:19:35 PM EDT
I would never even consider carrying a Glock loose in a coat pocket.
Link Posted: 2/12/2006 1:25:19 AM EDT
Funny, I am considering DXing my 19 in favor of a 26 and a 34. My constraint for a BUG is similarity, and the only thing that beats the same ammo is magazine commonality. Since you have the 19 I would go with the 26, but varying sizes of HK, Glock, Walther, or Springfield are out there too.


Cheers
Link Posted: 2/12/2006 3:19:06 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/12/2006 7:27:18 AM EDT by GLOCKshooter]
Although I am a big GLOCK fan, the 26/27 is too big for me for pocket carry. For CCW/backup the Kahr PM9 does everything I need 95% of the time. I have a .38 airweight, P32 and P3AT, but almost never carry any of them since getting the PM9. With Winchester RA9T it will do the job. Front pocket carry in an Andrews Custom Leather holster is no problem. I have never found an ankle holster for any gun that I could tolerate. IWB the Threat Solutions UCH is the bomb.



I am interested in the new Kel Tec 9. At under $300 I will buy one to check out. From what I can see I will need to take off the magazine extension.
Link Posted: 2/12/2006 3:47:05 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/12/2006 3:48:10 AM EDT by glenn_r]
I've owned all three. My experiences & opinions:

G27 (.40) is too big for pocket carry. Won't fit in jeans, too heavy for summer shorts or lightweight pants. Excellent shootability, though, and a great belt gun. The thickness & weight kill it for pocket carry.

642. Carries best of the three in the pocket. Most difficult to hit anything with, lowest ammo capacity & slow reloads. Best choice if easy carry at any cost is the criteria.

PM9. This is what I traded the 642 on. Can be carried in front pants pockets, just as light, much easier to hit with than the 642. No reliability problems and quick reload. Unlike an above poster, I recommend against the Hogue grips. It doesn't recoil enough to matter anyway, and the sticky, bulkier grips would make pocket carry more difficult.

I'm sure you've heard everything I typed before, but I can confirm all of this from personal experience.

FWIW, YMMV.
Link Posted: 2/12/2006 9:46:50 AM EDT

Originally Posted By glenn_r:
I've owned all three. My experiences & opinions:

G27 (.40) is too big for pocket carry. Won't fit in jeans, too heavy for summer shorts or lightweight pants. Excellent shootability, though, and a great belt gun. The thickness & weight kill it for pocket carry.

642. Carries best of the three in the pocket. Most difficult to hit anything with, lowest ammo capacity & slow reloads. Best choice if easy carry at any cost is the criteria.

PM9. This is what I traded the 642 on. Can be carried in front pants pockets, just as light, much easier to hit with than the 642. No reliability problems and quick reload. Unlike an above poster, I recommend against the Hogue grips. It doesn't recoil enough to matter anyway, and the sticky, bulkier grips would make pocket carry more difficult.

I'm sure you've heard everything I typed before, but I can confirm all of this from personal experience.



FWIW, YMMV.




You experience pretty much mirrors my expectations. I think the G26 is too large to be a full time BUG that will spend most of the time in a pants pocket or ankle holster. I think the 642 and PM9 would be very close on carrying and concealing, but I thnk the PM9 would be a superior weapon.
Link Posted: 2/12/2006 9:49:35 AM EDT

Originally Posted By GLOCKshooter:
Although I am a big GLOCK fan, the 26/27 is too big for me for pocket carry. For CCW/backup the Kahr PM9 does everything I need 95% of the time. I have a .38 airweight, P32 and P3AT, but almost never carry any of them since getting the PM9. With Winchester RA9T it will do the job. Front pocket carry in an Andrews Custom Leather holster is no problem. I have never found an ankle holster for any gun that I could tolerate. IWB the Threat Solutions UCH is the bomb.

www.threatsolutions.com/kahr.jpg

I am interested in the new Kel Tec 9. At under $300 I will buy one to check out. From what I can see I will need to take off the magazine extension.



You are right on about the UCR holster. I carry my G19 in one on a daily basis and it is the most comfortable, concealable, fastest, and secure holster I have used. Although I plan to use the PM9 primarily as a BUG, I will most definately get a UCR in case I do need to carry it as a primary weapon on occasion.
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