Concealed Carry

Bag Guns — Practical or Fanboy Gimmick?

Smith and Wesson FPC (bag gun) stowed in a soft case

I see a lot of fun guns, and fun fads, that are not terribly useful. That’s fine, it keeps the gun economy rolling and pays the bills for my favorite shops. After all, if you admit it, when was the last time those of us over 50 purchased something that we needed?

Guns don’t often need replacing, and fads are most often the province of younger generations. The Bag Gun concept, which has gained traction recently, is among these. The bag gun gives a bigger ‘loadout,’ a term best reserved for combat operations.

Bob Campbell carrying a PCC in a gun bag
Is the author carrying a laptop?

The need for a bag gun is low on my list. The Secret Service probably needs this type of gear, and maybe we would have a long gun ready at some events in regular local law enforcement circles. But the primary advantage of any discreet bag is that it shields the contents from prying eyes. This means thieves.

An obvious range bag isn’t very low key. Gun people will spot a lot of the gear. If you have disposable income for range toys, it’s all good. As time goes by, I am enjoying range toys more and more. However, some of us have less disposable income and more problems.

Being prepared sometimes puts us at odds with sections of the public. This includes those too timid to take charge of their own safety. Just the same, a good guy with a gun and a bad guy with a gun may be a little difficult to discern when you cannot see inside their mind. So, low key is always better.

Remember, certain sections of the public (with their thumb on 911) think some of us in the gun culture are crazy. My gun culture is filled with wonderful people, for the most part. The shootings in Chicago are another gun culture — like it or not. Discretion prevents us from being Ruby Ridged… we hope.

Theory of the Bag Gun

The bag gun has many nuances and is pretty gimmicky. Giving young folks slack, the bag gun in many cases is a re-discovered truck gun. I kept a light, handy, long gun in the cruiser. One lesson in being outgunned, but not outshot, was all it took. The problem is that some, if not all, the folks championing the bag gun with the thought that bigger is better. This ignores the basic tenets of personal defense and are on the high end of the Dunning-Kruger scale.

Practicing deployment from a gun bag
Practicing deployment might be better accomplished behind cover.

They overrate their ability and underestimate their knowledge. The Dunning-Kruger scale demands self-assessment against actual knowledge and performance. Many shooters are simply unaware that they are unskilled. A lack of police, military, or competetion experience is one problem, as they have no bar to match themselves against. They may have had poor or improper training.

A readiness standard and the standard response drill are not understood. An immediate response is needed in personal defense. Deploying a bag gun, or perhaps a bagged gun, is more appropriate and getting this piece into action in 10–15 seconds isn’t a high state of readiness at all. Nor am I willing to say the 9mm pistol with brace, a short barrel AR pistol, or anything else that fits in that bag is superior to the pistol you may carry concealed — if you have not trained.

If you have trained, the pistol caliber carbine may give you much greater range and hit probability. The bag gun simply doesn’t offer a valid response to an assault. If the bag gun is your sole armament, you will be full of holes before you deploy it.

Maintaining situational awareness while removing a PCC from a gun bag
It would be best to keep your eyes on the threat!

Some folks like to have a carbine ready in a special purpose gun bag or a gym bag. Convenience and price are concerns. Some bags are highly recognizable. In many jurisdictions, pistols over a certain length are illegal to carry concealed. I live in a state with perhaps the best of all possible carry laws. However, there are limits on the size of handgun carried, and an AR pistol is too large.

There is some precedent to keeping a long gun concealed under clothing, which isn’t what the bag gun is about. Doc Holliday kept a shotgun in a special custom rig under his coat. It was roughly similar to the new breed of short, pump-action Shockwave types. The Secret Service has long deployed a shoulder rig for its full-auto Uzis SMG’s and MP5 variants.

Most of us don’t have the need to stitch up a vehicle or clear a sniper from a rooftop. This is perhaps over the top. Among my circle of family and friends are an Army Major (with significant experience) and many who served as peace officers. None of us feel the need for a bag gun, but we all find the severe limit on response time contraindicated.

Locking open the stock on a Smith and Wesson FPC
Snap! The piece is locked. Now to rack the bolt to load the FPC.

Handguns Just Work Better

All of us deploy service grade handguns that are, for the most part, unexceptional. Aside from the fact that the carry of many of the bag guns are illegal in many jurisdictions — and a loaded carbine in a bag is questionable — the practical gain is slim at best. A few decades ago, Jack Lewis and I worked on several editions of the Gun Digest Book of Assault Weapons. Jack was the real thing, a combat marine with extensive experience. He came up with challenging experiments. In one of these, I matched myself against a skilled shooter with an UZI Carbine. The semi-auto UZI featured a 16-inch barrel and folding stock.

The goal was to deploy, fire, and address targets at 5, 7, 10, 15, and 25 yards. My pistol was an Action Works Custom Hi-Power 9mm. The whistle blew and the score was tabulated. Although observers didn’t really find it necessary, the winner was obvious. I was much faster in addressing targets, and the Hi-Power’s accuracy was superior to the UZI semi-automatic carbine. To be fair, we have better shooting carbines than the UZI with its heavy bolt and poor trigger.

I think the gun bag is for transport. If you need to have a long gun at ready, it should be on a sling. I often bring along a long gun when traveling or when camping. Feral dogs, the big cats, and feral humans are the likely threat.

Depending on the likely mission, some long guns might fit in a package that looks as if it would hold a ski pole. A sudden change in the safety variable may be addressed by such a firearm.

Security during transport is important. Many folks steal for a profit and many steal just for the hell of it. A nice bag gun is fine when traveling, but rapid deployment is highly questionable. Remember, there is no safety. No safety at all. There are simply varying levels of risk.

Kneeling on the case for a bag gun
In deference to aging knees, the bag is a useful buffer.

As an example, I was impressed by a video I watched featuring a skilled shooter carrying a bag gun. The firearm was a 9mm pistol of the AR type with AR-type controls, a 33-round magazine, and red dot sight. He knelt, and to his credit, kept his eyes on the threat. The case was zipped open, and the firearm was deployed and aimed toward the threat.

From the time the shooter knelt, to the time on target, was 11 seconds. Every layer of concealment denies access to your weapon. With a handgun, the covering garment is reasonable. The bag gun isn’t reasonable.

The bag gun, (even for LEOs) is for the threat you have some warning of. It is good to have a long gun for deployment in such a situation. I would prefer an AR rifle for reaction to an active shooter.

Aiming a bag gun
Up and shooting in way too long an interval!

The rifle must be carried chamber empty over a loaded magazine. I have not seen a bag that protects the trigger and safety actuator from movement. In any case, long guns simply are not as drop safe as modern handguns.

Giving Bag Guns a Shot

An advantage of a bag such as the ASAP bag that often accompanies me on trips is that medical gear and spare magazines may be carried. I keep a hatchet, flare gun, and a myriad of well thought out medical supplies in the bag.

Some bags are long and tall and scream gun. My ASAP bag is purely medical. While it is easy to carry spare magazines, they also represent more time to deploy than those carried on the body. Once the bag is carried with a firearm, you must never lose control of the bag. It is bad enough for a laptop to be stolen, much less a rifle or pistol…

Shooting a 9mm bag gun from a prone position
The 9mm bag gun is versatile and easily learned.

I have experimented with the system and find that the magazines may snag, but a sling is counter indicated for most deployments. A pistol caliber carbine with a sling is likely to snag on deployment and I would avoid most trappings. If you have time to deploy a long gun, of course, you are better armed. However, long guns are better served in area defense and home defense, making the bag best suited for transport.

I am dead set against leaving a firearm in a vehicle, although there are times when it is unavoidable. My opinions come from life experience and drills under controlled circumstance. The bag gun concept is theoretical and recreational for the most part. Be certain your training in tactical response makes that response operational not aspirational. Testing only works if the parameters of inquiry are well defined.   

That said, I recently tested the new Smith & Wesson Military & Police folding pistol caliber FPC 9mm. This is, to the best of my knowledge, the first factory supplied ‘bag gun.’ It gives me pause. In time of unrest and traveling across unfamiliar areas, perhaps the concept makes sense. You may carry the bag gun in with the luggage with no one the wiser.

Smith and Wesson FPC (bag gun) stowed in a soft case
The S&W bag gun set up is well thought out.

My wife knows my work well, yet she walked into the study, spotted the FPC bag gun, and asked what it was. She was surprised.

I practiced deployment. I am not fast at all and not as fast as possible with a bag gun. A folding carbine, such as the FPC, makes more sense than an AR pistol in many ways. It is much easier to shoot well.

If the FPC is properly strapped into the bag, it takes a while to unstrap it. Once you deploy the firearm, the bag is on the ground and may be lost during an engagement. Smith & Wesson has that covered as the FPC features a butt stock magazine carrier.

Hornady safe in the trunk of a SUV
A Hornady safe in the trunk just may be a good option… food for thought.

I caught the folding mechanism on my shirt once. It takes practice to deploy, and this isn’t something you will learn overnight. However, there is promise. I am working up a full review on the FPC soon. For now, the bag gun is promising, and I’m starting to see a light at the end of the tunnel. The bag gun isn’t going to replace my handgun, but when traveling or the right scenario arrives, this is a promising setup.

What are your thoughts of a bag gun? Would you ever carry a bag gun in place of a pistol? What roles do you think it could serve? Share your answers in the comment section.

  • Bob Campbell carrying a PCC in a gun bag
  • Practicing deployment from a gun bag
  • Deploying the S&W FPC
  • Maintaining situational awareness while removing a PCC from a gun bag
  • Locking open the stock on a Smith and Wesson FPC
  • Kneeling on the case for a bag gun
  • Aiming a bag gun
  • Shooting a 9mm bag gun from a prone position
  • Shooting a 9mm bag gun from a prone position for self-defense
  • Smith and Wesson FPC (bag gun) stowed in a soft case
  • Hornady safe in the trunk of a SUV
  • AR pistol with arm brace

About the Author:

Bob Campbell

Bob Campbell’s primary qualification is a lifelong love of firearms, writing, and scholarship. He holds a degree in Criminal Justice but is an autodidact in matters important to his readers. Campbell considers unarmed skills the first line of defense and the handgun the last resort. (He gets it honest- his uncle Jerry Campbell is in the Boxer’s Hall of Fame.)

Campbell has authored well over 6,000 articles columns and reviews and fourteen books for major publishers including Gun Digest, Skyhorse and Paladin Press. Campbell served as a peace officer and security professional and has made hundreds of arrests and been injured on the job more than once.

He has written curriculum on the university level, served as a lead missionary, and is desperately in love with Joyce. He is training his grandchildren not to be snowflakes. At an age when many are thinking of retirement, Bob is working a 60-hour week and awaits being taken up in a whirlwind many years in the future.

Published in
Black Belt Magazine
Combat Handguns
Rifle Magazine
Gun Digest
Gun World
Tactical World
SWAT Magazine
American Gunsmith
Gun Tests Magazine
Women and Guns
The Journal Voice of American Law Enforcement
Police Magazine
Law Enforcement Technology
The Firearms Instructor
Tactical World
Concealed Carry Magazine
Concealed Carry Handguns

Books published

Holsters for Combat and Concealed Carry
The 1911 Automatic Pistol
The Handgun in Personal Defense
The Illustrated Guide to Handgun Skills
The Hunter and the Hunted
The Gun Digest Book of Personal Defense
The Gun Digest Book of the 1911
The Gun Digest Book of the 1911 second edition
Dealing with the Great Ammunition Shortage
Commando Gunsmithing
The Ultimate Book of Gunfighting
Preppers Guide to Rifles
Preppers Guide to Shotguns
The Accurate Handgun
The Mission of Cheaper Than Dirt!'s blog, The Shooter's Log, is to provide information—not opinions—to our customers and the shooting community. We want you, our readers, to be able to make informed decisions. The information provided here does not represent the views of Cheaper Than Dirt!

Comments (28)

  1. to the other Bob

    No, not recommending a bag gun at all!

    Maybe even poking fun at it.

    Nothing beats a concealed handgun.

    A long gun is good if you can get to it

    Thanks for reading

  2. FBI handgun qualification — considering the time limits the draw cannot be very slow— six rounds in four seconds, but then these guys train to a high standard

    FBI Handgun Qualification Strings of Fire
    25 Yards Draw and fire 4 rounds standing, drop to kneeling and 4 rounds. 20 Seconds
    15 Yards From the ready, fire 3 rounds. 5 Seconds
    15 Yards Draw and fire 3 rounds. 6 Seconds
    7 Yards From the ready, fire 5 rounds. 4 Seconds
    7 Yards From the ready, fire 4 rounds, emergency reload, fire 4 more rounds. 8 Seconds
    7 Yards Draw and fire 5 rounds. 5 Seconds
    5 Yards From the ready, fire 6 rounds. 4 Seconds
    5 Yards From the ready, fire 3 rounds. 2 Seconds
    5 Yards Draw and fire 3 rounds. 3 Seconds
    3 Yards Draw and fire 3 rounds SHO, switch hands and fire 3 rounds WHO. 6 Seconds

  3. Bob, I think we have a “failure to communicate” here. I am no talking about an attack upon myself but upon others. In that case, I would be using my pistol. The “bag gun” is not reasonable if a quick response is needed, on that we agree. In a robbery or situation where the shooter is looking elsewhere, my goal would be to get my pistol out before he knows I have one. If the shooter is further away than I am comfortable with my pistol, and IF it is available, you bet I will try to get the the rifle and be behind cover while I do it. As for 1.5 second drills, I am a cop and no agency I know of teaches a fast draw from concealment (or anything else). Practice is great but in reality, very few people are ever going to be in a situation where a 1.5 second draw is needed. A rushed draw generally means a rushed and, often, missed shot. In my opinion, those skills are taught in classes to make people feel like they gotten their money’s worth from the class they took or because the want to be “tacticool”. I have been shot and I have shot someone and those tactical drills can be thrown out the window when the shit really hits the fan.

  4. The entire premise of this article seems to be the bag gun in lieu of a normal concealed-carry pistol.

    I sure wouldn’t look at it that way. I’m actually interested in this particular gun and it would be for the easy storage and purposes would be cheap (relatively) plinking and perimeter defense; easy to store in a stealth mode due to small size, things like that.

  5. What’s even more hilarious is CTD asking $60 for a 500 round brick of Fiocci .22lr and $240 for a Mossberg 715p… not including shipping. Just why? I mean rean really, these are “deals”? I get that this is “rimfire month” but c’mon. The 702 wasn’t exactly a great rifle, the 715 was the “tacti-cool” version… and now a 715 pistol version? What exactly would be the point of that thing? Put a single shot in a kids hand, teach them discipline without them trying to blow through even 5 rounds in 2 seconds. It’s not spray and pray and hope ya hit something. 🤦🏼‍♂️

  6. Miles-

    You will slowly get the gun out from concealed carry without the bad guys noticing????? Please consider the reality of attacks and how quickly they occur.

    An assault comes at you like a car wreck, unpredictable. I am pretty certain someone attacking with a ball bat, gun, or knife demands immediate response. A standard response drill is
    to draw and get a center hit at 10 yards in 1.5 seconds. This isnt particularly blinding speed but fast enough and about all mot shooters achieve with three or four practice sessions a year.
    To be clear I am not a bag gun fan save in the sense of low key transport. I keep a long gun at ready at home and carry a handgun concealed.

  7. So many people are commenting about how long it takes to get a weapon like the Sub2000 into action. Perhaps it’s just me, but there is very little chance that anyone is going to be in a “quick draw” scenario in getting a pistol OR long gun into action — especially if they are concealed. If it’s my pistol, it is concealed and bad guys will not know I have it until I can slowly get it out without them noticing. My Sub2000 will also be concealed and I will either have time to get it out or use my pistol. If you need a rifle, use your pistol to get to it then get behind cover while you get it operational — the Sub2000 once in hand, does not take long. Slow is smooth, smooth is fast.

  8. I use a computer case… Works perfect with Kel-Tec 2000. Even have room for my laptop and stuff… can carry it all over the place!

  9. I bought this gun, it rocks. For one, my wife can handle it while my AR-15 was too heavy. It stays unfolded in the bedroom for home defense. Additionally, it is VERY accurate at the 25-yard range I went to, which is really my only application, home defense/vehicle defense. If someone is more than 25 yards, I would let them go and avoid a murder charge lol. As far as folding up and deployment, who says you need that bag? It goes in a backpack, unfolds in a second, charges, ready. Not sure this 10 second deploy people are talking about, and if I were camping and some animals or people were approaching, I do think I would have time to grab/unfold/charge. Not like my CC I can draw and have ready in literally 2 seconds, but a great home defense gun for the ladies, and a great camping/truck gun as long as you don’t keep it in the original bag.

  10. Why the love for a KelTec Sub2k? If you don’t have a Glock, which I don’t and won’t, and with KelTec’s notable reliablity issues I’d be hard pressed to buy one. I’ve never been a fan of 9mm. Everyone and their brother’s cousin’s uncle’s sister’s husband’s grandpa’s relative thinks it’s the greatest thing on the planet. I DO have 9mm chambered stuff in the form of a Shield Plus and I trust that to run using even the old school Federal 124gr HyrdraShok. Would I wanna be shot with those? Nope. But then again I wouldn’t wanna be shot with my 125gr old school Federal Nyclad out my .38Spl snub.
    As far as, Arvada, Co… yup, lived in Lone Tree, worked in Castle Rock… and Colorado has gone to… “good samaritans”.

  11. To Miles and Joe: This is a very real problem. Last year, in Arvada, CO (part of metro-Denver) a Good Samaritan observed the fatal ambush of an Arvada PD officer by some whack-job. Mr. Good Samaritan rushed out and shot down the bad guy, ending his violent assault. Unfortunately, the Good Samaritan picked up the whack-job’s firearm, just as other Arvada PD was arriving on scene. The report was that the Good Samaritan was turning around, with the bad guy’s firearm leveled horizontally, in the general direction of the arriving officers, who then shot him dead. Tragic ending!

  12. To Matt’s comment: I noticed that some other responses mentioned the KelTec Sub-2K…I’ve had mine a while now, and it was a ‘Gen 1’ model, and I’m not sure what iteration it’s on currently. New out of the box, using inexpensive 115gr FMJ target ammo, different brands, I had a lot of problems…stovepipes, failure to feed, failure to eject, etc. A friend suggested trying different ammo. I had some wheel weight hard casts, 124gr, thru a Lee 6-cavity mold, a rather sharp-nosed SWC design, loaded mid-range hot. This ammo made all the difference, and the gun ran like a top, with no problems! This reinforces the notion of a thorough try-out, specific ammo with a specific firearm, prior to trusting it in a defensive encounter.

  13. Responding to Joe, just as you can reholster your pistol, you can also lay a long gun on the ground and raise your hands when the police arrive.

  14. I have one and love it. It’s a toy with a practical purpose. When I’m going camping for the purpose of camping and not hunting or target practice, I can put it in a regular back pack and it includes 2/23?round magazines and 1/17 round magazine, plenty of ammo for personal protection in the woods (if needed), unless you run into a bear. But nice to have if you start hearing banjo’s. And if you live in the country, this is indeed a nice truck gun. Just my thoughts. Love this gun and it performs nicely. Would trust it over any sub2000, Smith & Wesson made this gun well.

  15. My back-packable choice would be my KelTec Sub-2K, in 9mm, using same mags as my very old, but very reliable S&W 5904. The ‘foot-print’ is small enough when folded, and can be quickly deployed. The 16″ barrel adds a good bit of velocity, especially when handloaded with slower-burning powder. However, I totally agree that this would NOT replace my first line of defense, a handgun. Hill People Gear makes some wonderful chest rigs for pistol deployment in a flash.

  16. @Rockit… if my backpack can’t carry groceries while on my mototrcycle… then well… it’s sorta pointless, and this is coming from a S&W guy. But don’t get me wrong… that S&W FPC is cool looking and all, however… seems to me it’d get broken, quick, fast, and in one helluva hurry. @peteinalaska… yeah… I sort of agree. We don’t all have the luxury of living in Alaska. The .308… sure, if you’re taking a bull moose, reindeer, elk, grizzly, or polar bear at 500+yds. But then again, if it’s trying to steal my salmon, which I don’t eat, I’d probably want something more than my fly rod. 🤣 I wouldn’t mind having a Savage Axis in .308 but I don’t need one. I’ll just have to settle for my old non glassed 30-30. It seems to do the job. Sorta like Bob Ross. Then again a 7.62x54R Mosin or 8mm Mauser or .45-70 or 6.5 Arisaka or a 30-40 Krag would be cool. But alas… several of those “kick like angry mules with bad tempers.” Reckon we can just throw hand grenades?

  17. I have the keltec sub 2000 and I love it. Uses 9mm glock mags, and I got a 45° offset mount that allows me to fold it with the optic still on, and I can sling it collapsed or not. I have practiced deployment and the only setback is literally pulling it out of the bag. I haven’t tried the s&w yet

  18. The most important reason against ANY kind of civilian long gun usage in a public place is that the American public, and all of it’s police forces, have been conditioned to view anyone with a long gun and not in uniform as an “active shooter”. You will be reported as such by anyone nearby and responding police officers will shoot you from a distance before you can disarm yourself. This actually happened not too long ago when a CCW holder disarmed a man who was menacing people with a long gun. He picked the rifle up, and as he was walking with it a patrol car screeched to a stop and he was immediately shot before he could explain. At least with a pistol you could re-holster and remain inconspicuous.

  19. With the exception of those services or agencies that have an actual need or requirement for such a concealed or clandestine deployment method. The “Bag Rifle” is really just a “Tac Cool” gimmick and craze that has little or no use in the general civilian world and without a lot of training is likely to be more detrimental than useful if one actually needed to deploy it. I’m sorry, but any deployment time longer than about 6 or so seconds for a “long gun” is simply unacceptable. Maybe if you got lots of backup and/or firepower in-front of you you might have the time but likely … not.

    I concur that a “long gun” within a vehicle, small aircraft, or boat has a far higher degree of practicality and a greater spectrum of use. Even the AR pistol might be used within any of these applications however my personal choice has always run the .308 caliber in AR10, or Scout Rifle configurations. Basically, if one has such a need or requirement for along gun skimping on the caliber is not the best place to start. .223/5.56 is a serviceable caliber for any conditions and situations. The .308 will service all of those, then, step up and cover all the other possibilities and/or situations on may find the need for such a platform.
    Of the Scout Rifles currently marketed I have found the Mossberg MVP to be one of the best available within this category. There are others, Ruger, and Sig com to mind. The MVP is however, accurate, but inexpensive, often sold with a Vortex LER Optic, and excellent trigger, small, easily stored and accessed and the only one in its class that I’m aware of that can and does use different .308 Magazines from multiple manufacturers in both metal, plastic and composite’s. As well as M14/M1A and AR10. I’m told that the FN/FAL magazines also work quite well.

    If Tac Cool is your driving reason and need then by all means get a Bag Rifle and good luck! If on the other hand you’re interested in a “working” platform that might actually be useful and offer real time capability ….
    Get a pistol, learn to use it, acquire some good practical training and practice, practice, practice…. And practice some more.
    If indeed a rifle is the direction that you’re moving towards. The choose that which will serve your needs and requirement’s
    If still want Tac Cool but also practical and useful … one then might consider a Bullpup such as the new offering from Springfield Armory in the form of the Hellion.

    Whatever you decide make an informed decision based on actual needs, requirement’s and your priorities. , .

  20. @Bob Campbell, good article. as far as the S&W FPC… who can afford it for one? Is it a gimmick? Who knows. If Doc Holliday shows up at my door then we’ve got problems, but then again there’s a Huckleberry in there someplace… 😆

  21. Read this with interest. I have been a backpacker since my 20’s. It taught me that smaller/lighter is preferred, BUT, not always better. I found this to be true when I was considering the 10/22 take-down. Do it’s pluses outweigh its minuses? For some I am sure they do. For others, not so much. I’m old and fat, not 20 anymore. Clearly a smaller package is easier to take to the range in the trunk of a small sedan. That I see as a plus. I need to shoot a fmp before I decide if it is worth it to me. In the end, it is not the bag but the gun.

  22. I’ve had 2 Kel Tec Sub 2000’s I had computer bags for both, I always liked the thought of having a bit more distance, and firepower in case SHTF, sold them, to my regret.. the last time I traveled I took a long rifle in a case… too obvious, wished I had the 2k back, I really like the FPC, so maybe some day… people travel with computers, long guns, not so much anymore..,

  23. I have looked at the bag gun concept some. I have middling thoughts on it. I agree my pistol is much easier to deploy. In addition, I carry extra mags in the backpack, along with at least one very extended mag. However, Keltec has at least one folding 9mm PCC that also uses my Glock mags. It’s tempting.

  24. I like mine. Saw a utube video on a faster way to get it out of the bag. When bag is worn across the stomach using enclosed strap. He showed a little faster way to access it. I’m crazy pleased with mine. Still wouldn’t give up my others of course

  25. I’m in no need of a “bag gun” but the idea of a pistol caliber carbine gives me pause – I actually think I’d prefer something like that by my bedside (less recoil than my shotgun and thus even my wife could handle properly) as I think I’d have more accuracy with it than with my carry pistol and it would be easier to get into action than my AR-15.

    In addition to your review of the S&W I’d like you to expound upon the basic idea of a pistol carbine, as you did bag guns in general.

  26. Good article, as I have questioned the “backpack” concept, which if hiking/camping, would probably have to be piggybacked on yet another backpack? So, in transit, I think the bag gun may be a good way to keep discretion, and once in place, assemble it for the ready. Like the Ruger PC, breaks down nice for a backpack, and/or also fits nicely in the Ruger Red and Black 10/22 rifle case, for some deception. For me the Ruger PC is a good choice because for under $100 it can be made to be about 95% ambidextrous, with only the right side discharge not being convertible, and while for me I would have been fine if it was like the original 10/22’s without the take-down part, making it lighter, but I have to say, the take-down platform sure makes it a lot easier to clean, but other than that, it stays in one piece. 🙂

  27. I’m really glad Mr. Campbell addressed this topic since I just bought the gun in question.For some time I have been looking for a small long gun I could carry in my jeep or truck when traveling on back roads or when I wanted to hike in the woods. I had considered a Kel-Tec but didn’t like the fact that you couldn’t fold it with an optic. The S&W just caught my eye and it was an unnecessary purchase. My plan for the gun was, and is, to mount a sling that is quickly detachable and to carry it that way when walking about away from civilization for defense from small critters and the two-legged kind. If there may be big critters about, my trusty Ruger Alaskan will be riding in its’ ballistic holster strapped to my leg. I may not use the FPC much, but I have it if I need it. It also sits very nicely in the corner by my bed should I need it at night and want a little more firepower than my Taurus Public Defender, or don’t want to go to the closet to get my Winchester 1200 pump. Finally, sometimes a gun just makes you smile, and you buy it whether you need it or not. I could carry one of my AR’s (10 or 15) but they take up more space while I’m traveling. I’m looking forward to your review of the FPC.

  28. I always carry a pistol but I now add a bag gun when I travel and camp (in a camper, not a tent). The bag gun is not designed nor intended for quick response scenarios. But neither are most people planning quick draws for their pistols. Surreptitious methods, in my opinion, work best for most people who need to use their weapon. I wanted something that is easy to transport discreetly and that gives me more reach than my pistol. If given the opportunity to get it out unobserved, I’ll do that. If not, I’ll use my pistol.

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