Review: Springfield 911 .380 ACP

Springfield 911 .380 ACP pistol with stainless steel slide

Springfield Armory has recently introduced one of the neatest, most compact, and useful .380 ACP handguns in the past decade. That is a bold statement, but this is a fine handgun sure to be enjoyed by many shooters. I normally include a spec sheet at the end of the report, but the size of the 911 is among the things that are most interesting, so I will discuss size first.

This .380 ACP pistol weighs a mere 12.6 ounces and is only 5.5 inches long. The 911 is a single-action pistol that operates like a 1911, with a few differences worth noting. Anyone carrying a 1911 9mm or .45 for personal defense will be able to instantly acclimate to the pistol but there are differences.

The 911 features a single-action trigger breaking at 6.1 pounds that is an advantage in easy shooting ability. (There have been reviews that were written by those who have not handled, and certainly not fired, the pistol that state the trigger action is lighter. Let’s get real and meet the author halfway with your own experience.) The pistol is supplied with a flush-fit six-round magazine and an extended seven-round magazine.

The pistol is a little easier to shoot well with the extended magazine. You must carry a gun that is concealable. For some, this is more difficult than for others, based on personal preference and body type. No one should have any trouble with the Springfield 911 and a properly designed holster. No gun disappears under a covering garment. You are really concealing from casual observation, not a frisk or the like.

The 9mm is a baseline for many of us so consider your choice before going to a smaller caliber. That being said, if the adversary is motivated by profit and doesn’t want to get shot, the .380 is as good a deterrent as any—as long as he sees “shoot” in your eyes.

Some will find the 911 a great carry gun, I find it a perfect backup pistol. Personal opinion cannot interfere with an honest evaluation. I like the Commander .45 better, but the 911 .380 has much merit. Springfield Armory has been producing credible concealed carry handguns alongside its full size and competition-grade pistols for decades. The XDS and EMP are among these.

The 911 .380 is smaller than the others and the company’s first .380 ACP pistol. The pistol looks like the SIG P238 and less like the RIA Baby Rock. Fit and finish are superior to the RIA gun and at least comparable to the SIG. The pistol has enjoyed considerable development, and I find things I like a great deal.

Small caliber handguns chambered in the .380 ACP caliber sometimes bite the web of the hand. The Walther PPK is notorious for this in early renditions. The .380 ACP may be a small caliber but it has plenty of momentum in pistols that weigh less than 20 ounces. The long grip tang of the Springfield 911 makes the slide cutting the web of the hand practically impossible.

There is no grip safety, so this isn’t a true 1911, but there is a thumb safety. The pistol may be carried hammer down on a loaded chamber or cocked and the safety on. This isn’t cocked-and-locked carry as the slide isn’t locked by the safety. The cocked mode should only be deployed with a holster. I do not normally recommend thumb cocking a single action pistol as the piece is drawn, but with a small automatic such as the 911, leverage is such that thumb cocking is easy.

Another difference in the safety compared to a 1911 pistol is that the slide may be moved with the safety on. This isn’t possible with the Colt 1903 and 1908 small pistols or the 1911. This means you may load the pistol with the safety on. The safety is slightly larger than competing small 1911 types, and I find it an improvement. The safety is ambidextrous.

The grips are G10 designs are from our premier grip maker, Hogue. They are very well done. The design makes for good abrasion and adhesion when firing. The front strap is also roughened to allow a good grasp.

The pistol borrows the loaded chamber indicator from the XD series. The pistol is offered in either black nitride or stainless slide types. The frame is anodized aluminum. The pistol features a full-length guide rod.

The barrel is only 2.7 inches long. It is good; the .380 ACP uses small amounts of fast burning powder. Velocity was reasonably high even compared to longer barreled .380 ACP handguns. Hornady’s Critical Defense broke at 890 fps, the 90-grain Hornady XPT, 901 fps.

It was fashionable when the new wave of ultra compact .380 pistols were introduced to show the pistol beside a Colt 1908 .380 ACP and point out that the new technology allowed a much smaller pistol chambering the same cartridge. This is true but the 1903 is an easy gun to shoot well that is effective as far as accuracy goes to 25 yards or so. The 911 is small but it has a single-action trigger and very good sights. These sights allow for good accuracy. With a short sight radius and light weight, small handguns need good sights. The 911 is supplied with night sights. Self-luminous tritium sights make for a 24-hour capability. I like these sights very much and think anyone deploying the handgun for personal defense will appreciate these sights.

I dry fired the piece to acclimate. My hands are average sized, and the pistol took a bit of finger wrapping and moving to get used to, but I would get a full firing grip with the extended magazine. Firing the pistol was interesting. A lightweight .380 doesn’t kick enough to hurt, but there was some momentum firing a 13-ounce pistol.

Smith and Wesson snubnose .38 M442, Springfield 911, Baby rock .380 pistol
The SF 911 compared to the RIA Baby Rock .380 and the Smith and Wesson snubnose .38 M442, above. This is a compact pistol.

The surprising part was the accuracy potential experienced. The pistol comes on target quickly and naturally, due to the low bore axis and well-designed grip. It is important to concentrate on keeping the pistol properly aligned during firing. I fired 100 rounds of Fiocchi 95-grain FMJ as quickly as I could load the magazines. The magazines are easy to load and do not exhibit sharp edges. The pistol functioned well and was accurate enough to keep the shots in the X range at 5, 7, and 10 yards. I also fired from the retention position to test function. Function was excellent.

Moving to defense loads, I loaded the Hornady American Gunner loading. Loaded in an affordable 75-round box, the American Gunner load is affordable for a JHP. It fed, chambered, fired, and ejected normally. Firing for accuracy at 15 yards, several 2-inch 5-shot groups were fired from a standing barricade. This pistol provided excellent performance.

The primary advantage of the Springfield 911 is that it isn’t an inconvenience to carry. This means it should be with you when you need it. As for as firing and handling went, there were no shortcomings and complete attention to detail in the design was noted.

The drawback is the cartridge. I see comments by those who should know better, do not know better, or have some type of agenda that lob praise on the .380 ACP. This is misplaced. The .380 does not perform as well as the .38 Special or 9mm Luger—it cannot unless physics were reversed. It is not the baseline I recommend for personal defense.

So-called studies with dubious methodology and suspect sources have no validity. Professional gelatin testing shows the wound potential of a cartridge. The wound channel may be saved by doing a cast in gelatin and the neck, fissures, and final expansion are well preserved. The .380 ACP doesn’t equal the 9mm or .38 nor is it very close. The primary deficit comes in the form of expansion and penetration. Some loads are better than others. Some fragment in 3-4 inches of gelatin. This is dangerously short penetration. I have often stated that when a small caliber performs beyond expectation, it is because of good penetration. This means avoiding trick bullets and choosing a load with good penetration. The Hornady XTP, Hornady Critical Defense and Fiocchi 90-grain XTP load are viable choices.

The Springfield 911 is well made, accurate, reliable, and easy to handle well. It is a handgun that will always be with you. That seems to be what most concealed carry handgunners need. It is supplied with a neat carrying box, two magazines, zip-up bag, and pocket holster.

Would you carry a .380 as a primary or backup and why? Share your answers in the comment section.


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 (47)

  1. I HAVE A BABY ROCK AND A 9mm A 5 SHOT 38 AND A FULLSIZE 357 ” I HUNT WITH” .THE 380 ROUND WILL DO THE JOB IF NEEDED WITH OUT GOING THROUCH THE WALL BEHIND AND INTO THE NIEGHBORS HOUSE . a CCW pistol should be one that you are comfortable with . if its a 380 ,9mm or 45apc that is your decision .

  2. Thanks for this great review! Have you checked out the Underwood Critical Defense cartridges? I now feel plenty safe carrying a 380 loaded with these bad boys for self defense.


    I’ve read this study showing cartridges from .22 rimfire up through rifles and shotguns in self-defense and seeing how they perform. It shows the percentages of times when an assailant was stopped, how many times were one-shot stops, and how many saw no stop no matter how many hits were made.

    Turns out everything from .380 up is pretty much the same, with only the one-shot stop percentage increasing. In practice, .380 ACP really is enough for self-defense purposes and you’re only getting a few percentage points of difference for carrying a larger caliber.

  4. Nice Review! I would strongly consider this piece for daily carry. As for me, I already carry a S&W “Body Guard” There is NOTHING wrong with the .380 caliber. it will kill you just as dead as a .357

  5. Nobody wants to get shot, and the cartridge with the most kills in America, yes, the 22.LR Rimfire. So a .380ACP is more then enough.

  6. This pistol just seems so innovative. Just like nothing else in the industry! I remember buying my Sig P238 almost 9 years ago. I remember looking at the Colt Mustang long before that. Kimber hasnÔÇÖt even thought of something like this. Such a great innovation for the gun world this decade!

  7. My EDC gun is a Kimber Micro 380 that I like a lot. I bought it lightly used from a buddy and it serves its purpose well and inexpensively. Were I looking for a new pocket gun I definitely would consider this Springfield. In particular I like the external extractor. The G10 grips are OK but overkill on a 380, IMO – rubber grips, like those on my Kimber, are plenty grippy.

  8. I remember being told in my gun safety class, many years ago, that more people died from .22’s than any other caliber. Of course, this was long before many of the modern calibers like the .223 and 5.56 came along, so I don’t know if that still holds true today.

  9. I have the Sig P238 and P938. The P238 is a great gun. Light, small, easy to handle and carry concealed. I carry it cond 1 with safety on, in a DeSantis pocket holster. I am very accurate with it as well as the 938. I train to shoot 2 to the chest, followed by 2 to the face. My double taps usually stay within the 9 ring at 3 yards, and within the 7 ring at 6 yards. Single aimed shots at 15 yards mostly stay within the 8 ring, with an occasional flyer. My wife with her arthritic hands is able to rack the slide of her own P238 and shoots it well. Our two sons, their wives, and a sister in law all have P238s also, and everyone can shoot their .380s well. It is a great gun. I have shot my P238 over 3,000 rounds with one FTF, and that was one of my reloaded rounds. No issues with Hornady Critical Defense FTX rounds at all. I carry the P238 maybe 60% of the time, the P938 the rest of the time. On occasion, I will carry the P938 in a hip holster and the P238 in a pocket holster at the same time. I never feel undergunned with either gun, especially not when I am carrying both. I also have a SA XDm in .40, and another in .45. But they are more difficult to conceal on my small frame. Love the .380s.

    1. I understand the author’s point on the .380 penetration. We have made the conscious decision to rely on the .380 trading larger wound cavity for more accurate bullet placement. I especially made the decision to double tap 2 to the face, relying on the idea that 2 hits to the face would give most anyone, at least, pause, if not outright retreat. Since I carry 7 plus 1 in the gun, with a spare 7 round mag, I feel I can defend myself very well. My practice begins with visualizing an opponent, and my decision to use lethal force. The rest is thousands of rounds fired 9to instill muscle memory.

  10. I carry two .25 acp simply because they were inexpensive and no one wants to get shot by any gun. I also have a .380 so I think I am protected as well as can be and still keep them out of view in hot deep south weather which requires a small amount of clothing. My favorite is the 9mm but out of my price range these days. If a deer can be killed at 50 yards with a .22lr I think most any gun can stop a human at 10 yds., as long as he/she if not over loaded on drugs.

  11. The drawback is the cartridge. I see comments by those who should know better, do not know better, or have some type of agenda that lob praise on the .380 ACP. This is misplaced. The .380 does not perform as well as the .38 Special or 9mm LugerÔÇöit cannot unless physics were reversed. It is not the baseline I recommend for personal defense.

    The cemetery is full of people who died from a .38 wound

  12. With the newer self defense ammunition choices that came on to the market these last couple years, even a .380 with the shorter 2.7ÔÇØ barrels have plenty of penetration capabilities (Lehigh Defense projectiles by Underwood Ammunition, NovX/PolyCase Liberty Civil Defense, etc.) I had the chance to test some of the Underwood/Lehigh offerings from a Sig P238 (as mentioned a very similar look to this 911) and 20-24ÔÇØ of penetration at 7yds was the average. And ammo aside, as we all know shot placement supersedes ammunition/firearm combo ÔÇ£knock down powerÔÇØ any day of the week. Put the bullet where it needs to go and youÔÇÖre target will get ÔÇ£knocked down.ÔÇØ 🙂

  13. The SA 911 and the Sig .380 are product-improved clones of the Colt Mustang Pocketlite. I have an original one of these. The specs for all three are almost identical. The biggest difference is that the Mustang has teeny-tiny sights that are difficult to pick up no matter the lighting conditions. For that reason alone the SA and Sig are superior. Don’t think you need good sights on a pocket pistol? Yes you do.

    1. Not sure I agree with your comment about sights. If you have the time to aim a sub-three-inch barrel, the threat isn’t imminent and you have time to flee the scene. Firing on anyone, with the intent to kill, is not something to be taken lightly. Need for a concealed carry small caliber weapon is for emergency situations with an assailant at near arms-length, coming at you; not for target practice. No time for sights.

  14. In 1985 I was fortunate to have a friend returned from a cruise with a Llama 380 ACP that he purchased on the return leg, but later parted with because he wanted a larger pistol.

    When describing it, I’ve always referred to the pistol as a 4/5 scale 1911. I don’t know how technically accurate that is but it certainly is functionally accurate, since that is exactly how it appears.

    I’ve used the gun periodically for a time, then a few years ago I began using it continuously. Over the last five years I have put well more than 5000 rounds through it.

    The most notable thing that I can say about the gun is it works flawlessly even today after firing so many rounds. As time has gone on, I find that firing ammo whose powder burns badly, such as that you can get whose name is sourced from a Russian ammo facility, has caused it to jam. The only maintenance I’ve done in these cases is thouroughly clean the gun and elect to use ammunition that burns properly, and the problem is solved.

    I do consider myself fortunate because I have read of other Llama Pistols that have failed in catastrophic fashion. I am confident in the reliability and accuracy of this gun and use it as my daily with 7 + 1. I’m particular to use the best ammo I can get my hands on such as the Hornady Personal Defense described in the article.

    The author is right that’s really is not a 9mm or .38, but when used properly (the owner is familiar, practiced, accurate and confident), then carrying “that” gun will likely be the difference over caliber, forbid it’s ever needed.

  15. I just bought 2 Ruger LC9ÔÇÖs, one for the wife and one for myself. I have never been a Ruger handgun fan but these are sweet. Light weight, flat, compact, and shoot very well!! ! I am a retired Cop and carried the gamete of handguns over the years and these little Rugers are one of my favorites!!! To the gentleman with the wife with strength problems, I suggest an Air weight S&W Chief Special. Light weight and goes bang every time you pull the trigger.

    1. Thank you for your service as an LEO sir! IÔÇÖm sure it was an auto-correct but did you mean to write ÔÇ£carried the gambit of handguns over the yearsÔÇØ or ÔÇ£gameteÔÇØ? If itÔÇÖs a gamete then youÔÇÖve carried a mature haploid male or female germ cell that is able to unite with another of the opposite gender in reproduction to form a fertilized egg or zygote. Therefore, I must inquire, have you been breeding guns?!

      Bwhahahahahahahaha!! I was wondering the same thing and not to belabor the point, I’m sure we all understand the true meaning of the statement presented but it was fun to have a little humor injected (ingested?) into what is, otherwise, a morbid conversation and discussion.
      Thanks for the Yuck Ticks. ????

  16. .
    Didn’t the Navy have guns smaller than 16 inchers.?
    Someone sends a magazine worth of 380 acp, no one is going to laugh and say ha ha, those aren’t 9mm.
    Springfield is trying real hard with that 911, to provide something a person will have with them.

  17. Huggy, might want to look at the Springfield XDE. A da/sa that is easy to rack. Worked for my wife that had trouble with racking a slide. Hope this helps.

    1. Sir, thank you for your time and assistance in giving me some options for my Sweetheart. I so worry about her safety when she is out and about, and, in some situations, even when I am with her and well-armed. Knowing she could provide for her own defense, as well as being MY backup, would bring me much confidence and reassurance.
      I do believe I will make a couple of trips to town in the coming days to see if one of the LGS that include an indoor shooting range as well as renting guns to try, and see if they have one she can experiment with.
      But thanks again for the suggestions and recommendations. They are MUCH appreciated!!

  18. Huggy, you might like to look at the Springfield XDE. My wife had trouble with racking a slide due to poor strength. She can easily rack and use my XDE. It is da/sa also. Hope this helps

  19. I have no claim to ballistic expertise, but I was shot by a 357 magnum at very close range. I would not want to be shot ever again by any caliber weapon at any speed, but I think making a big hole is better than a small hole. Over penetration can be a problem, but we need enough to reach the heart and other vital organs.

    For those reasons, I prefer something with a bit more power and making a larger, consistent, expanded hole. Maybe an expert marksman whose body does not pump adrenaline under duress will have steady hands and shoot accurately, but I am not risking the lives of my family on some macho standard I may not be able to attain. I intend to shoot with shaking hands, twitching eyes, and declining eye sight and still win by making multiple, big holes, or BFH, if you will. In short, the 380 can be fine for larger-than-life, macho “experts,” but I will defend my family with something larger.

    1. I couldn’t agree more, Sir, and that is why I also prefer something with a bit more “Oompf” to reach vitals.
      That said (and in the case of my Sweetie with diminished grip strength, etc.) I’d MUCH rather have her carry SOMEthing she can shoot and shoot well than have no other alternative against an aggressor intent on doing her harm.
      As an aside, while I was but a young Buck-Private in the US Army, there was a Sgt who was shot in the leg by an angry husband, of which he’d been having an affair with the wife.
      Long story short, this Sgt. swore up and down he’d be shot with a .44 Magnum but when it all boiled down, it was finally learned he’d been shot with a .25ACP out of a Raven Arms pistol.
      Talk about adding insult to injury because he was Court Martialed for his efforts. LMAO
      In another instance, i knew of a Cuban Mariel (sp?) Boat Lift criminal refugee (??) who had been shot by a Dade County Sheriff’s Deputy in the abdomen with a .44 Magnum and Hollow Point bullet.
      He survived, obviously, but would forevermore be required to use/carry a colostomy bag for his criminal efforts.
      My point in both of the above stories is that it doesn’t matter one iota WHAT you carry and shoot, if you cannot HIT your target in a VITAL location, well, it could just end up with someone calling “Game OVER” in the end.
      One last thing WRT bullet/placement.
      NEVER, EVER, count on ANY kind gun/bullet combination to completely stop any aggressor.
      Last case in point: when I was a pre-teen, our next door neighbor was in his yard working one summer and took his t-shirt off to cool down. I happened to notice his ENTIRE abdomen was a crisscross of welts and (to my untrained 12 year old eyes) poorly done suturing.
      I asked this gentleman what had happened and he related that while he’d been serving in a LRRP unit in Vietnam, his small group had been ambushed and he was the only survivor, but only because the NVA left him for dead because he’d been, literally, shot to HELL with a Soviet 14.5mm MG (IIRC). Thinking he’d expire in short order, the NVA unit stripped him and his fellow men of weapons and Intel and such and walked back into the jungle.
      As my neighbor told me the story, he managed with the grace of God and sheer determination, to crawl back to friendly lines where he was saved, patched up and sent home.
      My point in all this is that there isn’t much in the way of guns that will ASSURE you of stopping an aggressor intent on doing you harm short of a CNA shot or a complete decapitation (YIKES! Not likely in a gun battle anyway. Unless you are carrying a bayonet or sword as backup, right?!?) so we MUST concentrate on hitting an opponent in the locations we’ve been told that give us the BEST chance of stopping said aggressor RFN or ASAP.

  20. The Ruger LCP loaded with Buffalo Bore flat points is like the Cricket from Men In Black.

  21. I’ll stick with my 380’s that can handle +P defense rounds, which with that load/bullet combo puts it right up there with the 9mm !!
    Springfield Armory are “sell outs” anyways !! They’ll NEVER get a penny of my hard earned money !!

    1. Could you explain why you say Springfield sold out, please? I may not buy from them ever, depending on the reason.

    2. Eric Cartman,…
      This goes back to last year involving the “IFMA” (IL Firearms Manufacturers Association) and SB-1657 and a “Carve-Out” just for Springfield Armory and Rock River Arms …. who are the PRIME FUNDERS of the IFMA.
      I cant remember ALL the specifics, but heres a link to help get you started ….

    3. They (SA and RRA) wanted “business” all to themselves and totally do away with competition, including driving out the smaller gun shops ,… with thier carve-out in yhe legislation.
      I am digging thru all the info about this and will provide you with the best link available as to ALL the ramifications of SB-1657 , and hopefully will have specific info for the “carve-out SA and RRA was wanting.

    4. That is over a year old. A lot of information, and more importantly action has come out of Springfield since then. Springfield had hired a lobbyist who made a deal in Springfield’s name. Springfield rejected the deal as soon as it heard about it and has staunchly opposed anything similar both vocally and with a significant amount of funds. Unfortunately, people run with half truths. We are all to will to allow ourselves to be divided and thus easily conquered. I am all for calling out those who are wrong. Springfield immediately admitted its mistake in the lobbyist it hired and really stepped up to the plate since. Make your own decision, but do go off of 1-year old information that paints an incomplete picture. ~Dave Dolbee

  22. Kinda looks like the Sig P938, only the Sig shoots a far superior caliber: the 9mm. BTW: Colt made a less bulky and flatter .380 SA pistol: the Government Model, Mark IV, Series 80. But in .380, it is hard to beat the double-action Walther PPKS (think: “Bond, James Bond”).

    1. Never heard that before about the Walther. My PPKS has worked flawlessly for many years.

  23. I’ve been looking for a suitable handgun for my fiance’ to own and carry, but with her having MS and greatly diminished grip strength, any pistol with a difficult trigger or recoil spring that is too stout to manipulate means she cannot rack the slide to load a chamber, release the slide via a slide release or squeeze a trigger if it takes more than a modicum of grip strength. It just is flat impossible.
    All that said, can anyone speak to how much physical dexterity it would possibly require to load a round into an empty chamber from a fully charged magazine or from slide lock, amd/or activate the slide release to load the chamber from a fully stoked magazine?
    Right now I have her carrying my Colt/Umarex (sp?) .22LR semi-auto, M1911A1 clone, with the hammer back, safety on, chamber empty and a loaded magazine inserted into the mag well.
    We’ve found that the recoil spring in this pistol is easy enough for her to manage, recoil is mild and she has 10 rounds at her disposal, along with 2 spare magazines as backup.
    And while having her armed with a “lowly” .22LR, it is NOT my first choice, it beats the alternative of using bad language, her handbag or trying to fight and/or run away from any immediate threat. Besides, with her having MS, running away isn’t an option, either.
    If anyone has first-hand personal knowledge about these particular traits in this pistol, I would be much obliged if you could tell us so we can make an informed decision.
    Thanks for any assistance the readers can render.

    1. Check the report on the Smith and Wesson Shield EZ .380
      It is much easier to use and fire.
      However– other than the chambering, if she is carrying a Colt .22 that seems a good answer. Why are you having her carry chamber empty? That makes no sense the dynamics of a defensive situation are such that real speed is needed. Failing to rack the slide quickly or having a short cycle would result in death or injury. What if she has one arm up and the attacker has her by the arm –she will never get off that all important first shot. A cocked and locked 1911 type, even if it is a .22, is a great all around shooter.

    2. The reason for the empty chamber is because she worries about the safety being disengaged in the heat of the moment and she could experience an AD/UD at an inopportune moment.
      I agree, it’s not MY first choice but it was/is a compromise to get her to carry something for AD.
      Thanks for your I put.
      The search continues.

    3. Consider for your wife a S&W .22 LR “Kit Gun” double-action stainless steel revolver. Very easy to use, hardly any recoil in spite of being quite small, no slide to rack or magazine to mess with, quick into action when needed (just point and pull the trigger), and vastly more reliable than a .22 semi-auto pistol. Only drawbacks: holds only 6 rounds and the .22 isn’t the best fight stopper – but up close and personal it will take care of business.

    4. If you and her have made the choice to conceal carry itÔÇÖs critical that you Chamber a round regardless. The gun renders itself a useless defense vehicle with a round in the chamber. When you have 2 seconds to defend yourself, there is no time to access the situation your in, factor distance of the attacker and think through the scenario and ÔÇ£thenÔÇØ try and Chamber a load under extreme duress. I carry double action, stricken fire, loaded and 1 in the Chamber w/ safety off. I train that way.

  24. Nahhh. We’re a 9mm family. All of us carry Canik TP9 derivatives. 18+1 solves any caliber issues. We do, however, have a Phoenix Raven.25 that’s just a fun little piece, and surprisingly accurate.
    I guess its all depending on if your going to shoot the gun, or carry the gun. I can see a .380 being fun to shoot, but I wouldn’t trust my life to it.
    Caliber is a bit “overdone” though. As I tell my wife, that .25 still puts a 1/4 inch, burning hole in whatever it hits. So empty it. That’s 6+1, 1/4 inch holes. Quite enough deterrent for most situations.

    As always
    Carry on

    1. You are quite right about the little .25. My wife once stopped an assault against her with a Colt Junior .25 she carried.

    2. Absolutely Sam. I think too much credence is given to “the bigger the better”. Most attackers would be turned away by just the gunfire, regardless of caliber. Even the most stupid of assailants, doesn’t want to get shot. Plus the burning hole factor. Add in a little blood, and off they go, to whatever veterinarian they can get patched up at under the radar. Not all ne’er-do-wells are supermen maxxed out on the drug of the day. And it should be plain to see that they’re also not Einstein’s. Keep that .25 my friend.

      As always
      Carry on

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