Choosing a Concealed Carry Gun for a Woman
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Thread: Choosing a Concealed Carry Gun for a Woman

  1. #1
    Senior Member CatGunChic's Avatar
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    Oct 2015

    Default Choosing a Concealed Carry Gun for a Woman

    I recently recieved my pistol permit & am in the process of choosing my very first gun, which will be used for concealed carrying. I'm only 5'1" so I'm trying to find a small gun, but one that will still work great for defense.
    I've been renting what I can at a range to test before buying.
    So far I tried:
    Glock 26 - Love it but it's bulky for concealment
    Ruger LC9 - Hate it! The mag falls out when I shoot it, which might be because of my grip, but I havent been able to stop it. Never happens on any other gun. Also hate the long trigger pull.
    Ruger LCR .38 - The recoil is too much for me.
    S&W .357 mag - Not a conceal gun but I had to mention it because I'm in love. If only it were small! 😍

    I plan on trying the Ruger LCR .22mag, Glock 42&43, and the Colt Mustang .380. If the range has them for renting that is.

    My questions:
    1) Are the .22mag & the .380 suitable for defense? I thought they were but I'm not sure.
    2) Do you have any pointers or comments on the guns listed?
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  2. #2
    Member Okinawan_Girl's Avatar
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    Jan 2016
    Tumwater Canyon, Washington


    I am much taller and bigger than you! Ironic, being Japanese I am 5'10" with my taller and bigger frame, it's probably different. But I think with practice you could handle 9mm. I have a Walther PPQ as my every day carry arm. That's what I use and it works for me. At your size. Try .380 and work from them. I'm more than confident you could handle it. Look at Ruger's .380's they're not bad and not as expensive as the Mustang. The Mustang has had pretty iffy, if not bad reviews. It's not accurate and for it's 650 dollar price point. You could do much better. I'd also look into Walther's small frame revamped PPS.
    Siplace likes this.

  3. #3
    Ancient Gaseous Emanation Popeye's Avatar
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    Oct 2007
    Sacramento area, CA


    Neither I nor anyone else can tell you what's the best carry firearm for you. Only you can do that.

    Leedi, the love of my life, is 5' 2" and carries an Officer's sized 1911 chambered in .45 ACP..

    I do not consider .22 Mag to be an suitable defense round. Others do.

    Don't be in a rush to purchase. Keep on trying as many different handguns as you possibly can. Eventually one will 'talk' to you.
    larry, deputy, Kobs and 2 others like this.
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  5. #4
    Senior Member NGF Addict!
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    Oct 2012
    west central Texas


    best advice i can give is keep on trying..........

    i do not subscribe to caliber wars much.
    I have no basic problems with the 380, one small 380 that i have tried and really like is the S&W BG380 bodyguard.....i think they are calling it the M&P bodyguard nowadays. I thought it was comfortable to shoot with decent sights for such a small gun.

    I have encountered the mag problem you have mentioned with the Ruger LCP.

    i have also tried the Glock model 42......this little glock is really gaining ground in law enforcement as a backup/off duty handgun. I find it to be accurate and mild. It has a much shorter trigger pull than the BG380 if that is a consideration. Personally, i prefer the longer pull but i am more of a revolver man.

    The Ruger LCR is certainly a fine handgun. I carry the 357 magnum version for xtra weight and loaded with specials to help with recoil. The big advantage of the revolver is load selection. There are milder 38 special loads you can consider. My wife carries 38 target wad cutters in her snub for recoil management. This really has nothing to do with her being a woman......she is just more recoil sensitive and getting up in age as i am. You might find the xtra weight the Ruger SP101 has to be an advantage in recoil management.

    There are some folks that carry a 22 mag. My biggest concern there is keep rotating out the carry ammo on a regular basis as the rimfire is not near as ignition reliable as centerfire ammo. Most rimfire revolvers have a much heavier DA trigger stroke......i did find this to be true as well when comparing a 357 LCR with a 22 mag and 22 LR LCR's......the trigger pull was noticeable. There are some single actions like the NAA mini revolvers.....but they do take some getting use to as they carry small and light to the extreme and the guns can be dificult to manipulate.

    go to a gun range and borrow as many as you not get in a hurry to buy.
    Last edited by deputy; 01-31-2016 at 02:47 PM.
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  6. #5
    Senior Member NGF Addict! larry's Avatar
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    Jul 2012
    Ft Wayne, Indiana


    Some more to try.

    S&W Sheild
    Walther PPS
    Ruger LC9s (this is a different gun than the LC9)
    Kahr CM9 or PM9

    Just keep searching until you find what you want.

    My personal opinion is nothing less than 9mm or 38 spec in a revolver. That is just my opinion.

    Fact is if you cannot shoot the 9mm and hit anything then you need to look at the 380.

    Also if you like the revolver but not the recoil they do make the LCR in 9mm revolver.
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  7. #6
    Senior Member NGF Addict! Yosemite Sam's Avatar
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    I had a S&W Bodyguard and it has the same crappy trigger as the LC9 she mentioned, hated it. The Kahr has a really nice trigger IMO, I carry the CM40. I really want a Sig P938. I haven't shot one, but I did fondle one. It's small and sexy. They also make them in .22. Or the P238 is the .380.
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    Last edited by Yosemite Sam; 01-31-2016 at 03:22 PM.
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  8. #7
    Senior Member NGF Addict! GreybeardBard's Avatar
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    May 2015


    If you want a mouse gun. I carry a .32 Berretta. Comes with Crimson Trace. a bit on the small side, but the laser helps me put the holes where they need to be.

    For 9mm, think about the SA XD series
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  9. #8
    Senior Member NGF Addict! Andy 22/308's Avatar
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    I carry a Browning 1911/22 and every so often the wife and I go to a questionable location like the St. Vincent de Paul thrift store and she asks if I'm carrying and I say yes, and that makes her feel better. But when she personally sees the pistol, she gets mildly upset. Even so, she says from time to time that she'd like a carry piece. My wife-in-law has more or less the same attitude, but it appears her main concern is that her carry piece is pink.

    That said, I'm very happy with my carry piece. I have big hands, and wanted something that would fill my hand. I also wanted the longest sight radius I could get away with. I also wanted the most rounds in the mag that I could get. And the whole package had to be ultra-slim, and so light-weight that I wouldn't be tempted to invent reasons for not carrying. I like what I have.
    "Behold, I Myself have created the smith who blows the fire of coals and brings out a weapon for its work." Isaiah 54:16

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  10. #9
    Senior Member NGF Addict! PrairieHunt's Avatar
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    Oct 2014
    Black Hills of South Dakota


    I take it the LCR and the S&W, you shot the same loads out of? With those reactions?
    You might be interested in the Ruger SP101. It's rather between the two.

    Also definitely look into a concealed carry purse. You might not even want to use it most of the time. If you look into it. There are situations that it can be incredibly defense full tool. You may want to use it....even if just sometimes.
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  11. #10
    Senior Member NGF Addict! KW Gary M's Avatar
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    Springfield XDs, Ruger LC9, Taurus Slim 9, Glock G43, S&W M&P Shield, any snubby Revolver. Personally I like Ruger when it comes to revolvers but that's just me. I'd look at a .357 Mag LCR.
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