Tiny Gun, Huge Punch

Diamondback DB9

Many people have differing ideas about what a backup gun is. Is it a good idea to sacrifice magazine capacity for size? What caliber is best? What about reliability or accuracy? Some of you might be familiar with small pocket-sized pistols such as the Ruger LC9 or the Kahr PM9. These small, concealable firearms allow shooters to carry a bit of extra firepower out of sight. The new Diamondback firearm is something to consider. What if you had a firearm smaller than most .380 pistols that can carry a six-round magazine of 9mm stopping power, ready to fly at a moments notice? Enter the Diamondback DB9.

The first and most obvious advantage to this firearm is the ballistic superiority of the 9mm cartridge. Some experts say that the .380 round, in general, will expand or penetrate, not both. 9mm ammunition tends not to have this problem. There is a reason why many law enforcement and military personnel use the 9mm. It is light enough to carry a lot of ammunition, and heavy enough to put a bad guy down, which, for a belly gun, seems ideal to me. The next major feature this firearm brings to the table is its incredibly small size. At only .8 inches wide, it is just a tiny bit wider than the handle on my coffee cup. It fits on the inside of my belt line much more comfortably than any other 9mm’s I have tried. This could be, however, due to the lack of a slide catch on the side of the weapon. The grip is still easy to handle despite its ultra thin physique. The extended bottom plate makes holding this firearm much more comfortable. The ridges on the sides of the grip help to hold the gun firmly in your hand. Striations along the slide aid in chambering a round. When empty, the gun weighs in at only 11 ounces and has a very balanced feel. A steel trigger with dual-connecting bars allows for a crisp smooth, five-pound double-action-0nly (DAO) trigger pull. I noticed almost no creaking when cycling the weapon. Accuracy seemed to be spot on, the rounds shot to point of aim with no problem. The three-dot sight system on top of the gun is adjustable for windage, but did not need adjusting out of the box.

In firing the weapon, recoil was fairly pronounced but in a straight line, as opposed to whipping to one side or the other when cycling. We experienced no jamming or feeding problems when firing rounds through the gun.

Overall, the Diamondback DB9 is an excellent choice for a backup or belly gun. I like the idea of carrying something with a bit more bite than your average .380 pocket gun. A lot of firepower in a tiny, travel-sized package is to me, just plain genius.

Specifications and Features:

  • Capacity: 6+1 Rounds
  • Weight: 11 Ounces
  • Length: 5.60″
  • Height: 4.00″ with mag
  • Width: 0.80″
  • Barrel Length: 3.00″
  • Firing Mechanism: Striker Fire
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 (7)

  1. With se,i-autos being all the rage these days there are a few choices to consider. my personal is the Beretta 21 A. Although its a .22 caliber pistol it is insanely accurate out to 7 yards which is really all you are going to be shooting in a close encounter, in reality much closer. Second, the 9, since it is so fast tends to go right through targets not causing the shock factor that tends to bring targets down. This is a well known phenomena in law enforcement, one that has caused several officers their lives. The .22 tends to either fragment or ricochet on impact with boe giving it the pinball effect which causes considerable trauma once the round has impacted its target, VERY NASTY, and loaded with CCI minimag hollow points youve got yourself a real man stopper. Also with a 2.5 inch barrel and at only 5.34 inches in length it is very concealable and easy to produce in a hurry. I’ve come to find this out when running across rattle snakes in an attempt to hike back to several of my top secret fishing holes lol! A .22 might not seem like much, but ask any seasoned shooter and he’ll tell you a .22 is no joke. The lower price on ammo is something to be considered as well. If you must have a larger caliber I recomend the Ruger LCR in either .38 special or .357 mag. Although they are revolvers they offer one shot knockdown which is really ideal in personal defence situations since all you might have time for is one well placed shot. Whatever your choice Happy Shooting ladies and gentlemen and remember SAFETY FIRST!

  2. I just purchased this handgun for my wife, the glock 27 was just to big for her hand. I must say after shooting this weapon I was inpressed with it, no jams, no feed problems. The recoil is a little more stout but considering the weight its not bad. I liked it so well I purchased another one for myself for conceal carry. The price was right too @ 309.99 shipped free you can’t go wrong. This is well made firearm and I would reccomend it to anyone looking for a sub-compact weapon.

  3. You are stuck with this pistol if you want the convenience, conceal, lower muzzle flip and accuracy the DB9 offers. I say stuck, because it’s a crap-shoot whether you get one that feeds well or not. Either you will get lucky and the ramp feeds well out of the box, or you’ll have to send the gun back for a factory ramp modification. Either way, the immediate inconvenience and gamble is worth the benefits this pistol offers IMO.

    I bought the DB9c which is the compensated barrel. After attempting 120 rounds of of various ammo I am still searching for a common hollowpoint round that will feed and eject well. Seems the more narrow the HP, the better it feeds, so I’m expecting the narrow tipped Hornady Crit Defense to run well on the next range trip. If not, I’ll send the pistol back to the factory.

    I’d also like to suggest that this gun is only for well trained people with strong forearms. The slide is tough to retract. The ultra-light weight means many failures to feed in the hands of a novice, so it’s all about a two handed, locked elbow, strong wrist stance.

  4. I purchased a DB9 yesterday and tried it out today. Shot about 50 rounds of standard 9mm ammo and performance was absolutely flawless, right out of the box! No failure to fire/feed/eject, no jams whatsoever. Recoil was not unpleasant, especially considering how light this handgun is. Accuracy was quite decent. Am very pleased with the DB 9.

  5. Went to CTD website, they don’t have the product listed. Went to Diamondback Firearms website, and they have the DB9 listed but no price. Also, they do not have spare magazines listed for the 9, only the 380. I say wait a while on this item until they have support items and a few more in depth reviews.

  6. A belly gun like a derringer or the .380 LCP & Kel-Tec .380 or even this 9mm Diamond Back are primarily for use at 7 yards or less [the distance you can legally shoot an attacker with a knife or edged weapon]… and at that distance, a good .380 [9mm short] hollowpoint will be just as effective as a regular 9mm. Choice of a concealed carry pocket gun or mouse gun as some like to call them.. should be based upon reliability / dependability and concealability… not the difference between the power of a 9mm short versus a regular 9mm at 21 feet or less.

  7. How many rounds did you put through it without any malfunctions, before you recommended it as a carry gun?

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