Mid size guns? - Graybeard Outdoors
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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-02-2019, 12:09 PM Thread Starter
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Default Mid size guns?

Jack of all trades and master of none.

Its an old saying that I think can apply to certain firearms. The gun that you look at and wonder 'why?'. Like midsize and so called compact handguns.

I've been continuing to work with the little Ruger LCP that I bought, and have slowly been inching over to the dark side of the infernal auto loaders. For a die hard wheel gun man with over 50 years of loyalty to the revolver. Its been a long strange trip. I'm actually liking the little semi auto a lot. Way easier to shoot than a J frame air weight revolver, more accurate for me at least with a lot less pain in my aged arthritic mitts. And unlike the Glock 26 I had for a few years and almost never carried, the LCP has been in my right hand pocket since the first range session. Light, easy to carry, it's replaced my North American Arms .22 mini revolvers.

In the two years I had the Glock, I carried it twice. The 26, sometimes called the baby Glock, was still way too big for a pocket gun in Wrangler shorts, which is my wear most of the Texas warm weather. That 'warm' weather in Texas hill country is 8 months of the year. No jacket needed. The Glock 26 like most the so-called compact handguns, needed a good carry rig to comfortably carry it. This brings up the question in whats left of the rest of my mind. If I need to have a carry rig, why bother with the midsize? I mean, a Glock 19 is way more shootable than a 26, and the K frame S&W revolvers are way more shootable than the J frame snubbies.

So, if the gun carry gun is not a true pocket pistol, and you need to strap on a carry rig with a sturdy belt, why not just carry a more shootable gun with more ammo capacity? The very compact guns like a Glock 26 and small SIG's, all sacrifice something to shrink them down and cut weight and bulk. Even for a good shooter, the smaller guns can be a challenge. Like my wife.

I met Karen on a pistol range. That was the very first time I ever laid eyes on the person that was to become my wife, lover, best friend, mother of my children, and at times coconspirator. Our children made us grandparents, and in the almost 50 years we've been married, its been a trip. Karen loves to shoot. She's competed in pistol events, and with her Smith and Wesson model 41, has taken home some trophies. With her Smith and Wesson K-22, she's put Mexican fried rabbit on the table with the peppers and onions all fried together for a feast. What I'm trying to say in a long winded way is, that Karen is a great shot, experienced competitor in pistol competitions, and wicked plinking shot. She's been shooting all her life.

But...when we moved to Texas in 2015 and took the class and qualified for our license to carry, Texas at that time, did not allow for qualification to be shot with a .22. It had to be at least a .32 caliber. They changed that in 2016, but that didn't help us in 2015. I told her to just use my Glock 26, She tried it out and handed it back to me and said forget it. Didn't care for the snappy recoil at all. So she went out front and rented a Glock 17 and breezed through the qualification with a perfect score. The full size Glock 17 was so easy for her to shoot, no matter that she had never handled one before. Just that extra inch or so in size and a few ounces in weight made a huge difference.

I've been around long enough that I have begun to wonder if theres really a need for mid size handguns? I mean, from my own experience, and YMMV, if its not a real pocket gun, and actually fits in a pocket holster in your pants pocket, then why not go for a full size gun and just get a good comfortable carry rig for it? Why strap on a Glock 26 when a 19 or even a 17 will carry well?

Don't over do it, just enough will do.
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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-02-2019, 08:01 PM
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JI mean, from my own experience, and YMMV, if its not a real pocket gun, and actually fits in a pocket holster in your pants pocket, then why not go for a full size gun and just get a good comfortable carry rig for it? Why strap on a Glock 26 when a 19 or even a 17 will carry well?
I'm not a Glock guy, so I can't relate to your specific examples. For me personally, I can *easily* conceal a gun like a S&W M&P Shield, but for sure it isn't a pocket gun in my estimation. I also don't consider them a "mid-size" gun, do you? Next up on the scale would be a M&P 9mm Compact - is that a mid-sized gun from your perspective? With its shorter grip and barrel, I can conceal it without much more effort, using the same belt and style of holster that I would with the Shield, though I do need to be a bit more careful in how I dress. Then there is the full-size M&P, which takes much more effort to conceal well.

So, if by mid-sized, you mean either the M&P Shield or the M&P Compact, I see a place for them. Yes, you probably want a decent belt and holster for either, but with the right rig they are plenty comfortable and noticeably more easily concealed than the full size M&P.

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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-03-2019, 08:27 AM
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actually the 19/23 is glocks midsized gun the 17/22 is the full sized. I do agree though on the 26/27 ive owned both and they went down the road. Only reason was they just don't feel good in my hand. Kind of like grabbing hold of a 2x4. Good reliable guns but if I had to pack a midsized 26 I might as well pack a 19. Glock doesn't really make a pants pocket gun like the lcp. Closest thing to it is a 43. I love mine but it too needs a holster as does a S&W shield.


Advantage to a small gun like a 43 or shield of even a 26 compared to a 19 is weight. a fully loaded 19 weights enough more then a fully loaded 26 that a guy just might not want to haul it around all day. The other advantage a 26 has is it holds more ammo then a 43. some will say another advantage is whats hardest to conceal isn't the barrel its the grip frame and a smaller grip frame is easier to conceal.


My opinion with that is any gun with the right rig and wearing the right clothes can be consealed. Ive carried a full sized 1911 concealed without a soul noticing. Advantage a 19/23 or a M&P compact has over the smaller guns is shoot ability. I think many who own them own one or two guns and need a gun to not only be a carry gun but a home defense gun and a range toy on Saturday. That is the role guns like the 19 excel at and its why its probably the best selling handgun in the world.


Its all a compromise. You have to give up something to gain something else. Personaly I think the smaller is better isn't allways the right answer. Everyone advertises that they made the smallest lightest ect gun. Fine till you actually have to use it. Theres a time for small guns. Like summer when your wearing a tshirt. But the right way to look at it is to carry the most gun you can conceal because that's what you want if you truly have to use it. I love my shield and my 43. I even love my lcp's but if shtf id hope it was on a day when I packed my 19 or 23 or even better my smith compact 45acp.

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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-03-2019, 01:16 PM
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All made some good points. Another thing to consider is people come in all shapes and sizes and varying levels of ability. What works for one may not work so well for another.
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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-03-2019, 01:49 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by lloyd smale View Post
actually the 19/23 is glocks midsized gun the 17/22 is the full sized. I do agree though on the 26/27 ive owned both and they went down the road. Only reason was they just don't feel good in my hand. Kind of like grabbing hold of a 2x4. Good reliable guns but if I had to pack a midsized 26 I might as well pack a 19. Glock doesn't really make a pants pocket gun like the lcp. Closest thing to it is a 43. I love mine but it too needs a holster as does a S&W shield.


Advantage to a small gun like a 43 or shield of even a 26 compared to a 19 is weight. a fully loaded 19 weights enough more then a fully loaded 26 that a guy just might not want to haul it around all day. The other advantage a 26 has is it holds more ammo then a 43. some will say another advantage is whats hardest to conceal isn't the barrel its the grip frame and a smaller grip frame is easier to conceal.


My opinion with that is any gun with the right rig and wearing the right clothes can be consealed. Ive carried a full sized 1911 concealed without a soul noticing. Advantage a 19/23 or a M&P compact has over the smaller guns is shoot ability. I think many who own them own one or two guns and need a gun to not only be a carry gun but a home defense gun and a range toy on Saturday. That is the role guns like the 19 excel at and its why its probably the best selling handgun in the world.


Its all a compromise. You have to give up something to gain something else. Personaly I think the smaller is better isn't allways the right answer. Everyone advertises that they made the smallest lightest ect gun. Fine till you actually have to use it. Theres a time for small guns. Like summer when your wearing a tshirt. But the right way to look at it is to carry the most gun you can conceal because that's what you want if you truly have to use it. I love my shield and my 43. I even love my lcp's but if shtf id hope it was on a day when I packed my 19 or 23 or even better my smith compact 45acp.
The points you make are just what I was talking about.

I love my LCP, and it's soooo easy to carry, that in theory I should never be unarmed. Even in this Texas summer, it fits in my Wrangler shorts just fine. So I have at any time half dozen .380 runds on tap.

But...if I choose to upgrade, then I can't see the Glock 26 size guns. I may as well carry a 19 and have a gun with way way better shoot ability, not to mention more rounds. I guess I've come to a point in life that its not an outright pocket pistol, then I'm going full size like a 17, or at least a 19. With the 19 being soooo popular, it would have the advantage of using either the 19 or 17 mags.

I've pushed the range on the LCP out to 15 and 20 yards, and if I'm careful, its still hitting in the center. So at least I have the range for the house wares isle at Walmart if I had to. A **** of a to better thinly old NAA .22 mini revolver had.

Don't over do it, just enough will do.
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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-03-2019, 02:30 PM
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I carried a glock 43X for a while but I can't shoot it nearly as good as my FNS-9 and the FNS-9 holds 18 rounds. I carry inside the waistband and have forever so all is good for me.
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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-03-2019, 02:54 PM
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Originally Posted by spruce View Post
All made some good points. Another thing to consider is people come in all shapes and sizes and varying levels of ability. What works for one may not work so well for another.
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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-06-2019, 04:15 AM
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I've been going between a Walther P99 and P99C in .40SW. The C isn't a whole lot smaller but since the C carries only 8 vs 12 in full size and the grip is shorter, I find it a bit easier to carry long term and a bit easier to hide. But much like the M&P and M&P compact there's not lots of difference. I shoot the bigger gun a bit better and an extra 4 shots may be nice. But the C is more comfortable to conceal and carry.

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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-10-2019, 10:25 AM
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My daily carry is a Sig 365XL and I absolutely love it. It is light enough to not be bothersome while carrying and can provide 12 + 1 if needed (15 round mags available). Head shots are super easy @ 25 yds, came with Sig Nite Sites. Recoil to me is way under what should be expected from a smaller gun like this. I have always been a 45 acp man but for some reason found my self carrying this 9mm instead. I carried a Kahr CW45 for years and I think fully loaded the XL may be lighter than the CW45 but it could be my old mind.
I would consider the 365 XL a mid size gun. First time I have ever had (or used) a straight trigger and love it, it breaks at 90*.




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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-15-2019, 10:38 AM
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Different strokes for different folks. Probably no wrong answer. A larger gun is usually better to shoot. But if you leave in in the glove box, its probably not something you are comfortable concealing. Might as well be a brick. If its too small to hold on to and shoot well, your limited. I know that until I got my LC9s, I didn't carry nearly as often. I wasn't comfortable with that big lump, trying to pull my pants down. With a good holster, now mine goes with me everywhere all the time.
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