Recommend me a SHTF handgun from this list

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Recommend me a SHTF handgun from this list

Post by Beowolf » Sun Aug 18, 2013 3:01 pm

Here are the choices:
In my possession:
Smith & Wesson M&P 9c, 12 round mags
Springfield XDm .40 Compact, 11 and 16 round mags
Additional option, not yet owned:
Sig Sauer P229 Scorpion, 12 round mags

The S&W is my primary carry. I shoot well with it. I haven't had much range time with the XDm, but I'm already thinking that I would prefer the standard (4.5" barrel, non-compact) version due to both barrel length and the full grip. I previously owned a P229 DAK and shot very well with it, but I got restless and needed money, so i sold it a few months ago.

Of these choices, which would you recommend as my SHTF/bug out weapon and why? That is to say, which should I prep as my go-to weapon with mags and ammo (and practice, of course).

(FYI, I can no longer purchase magazines that hold over 15 rounds in my state, so my store of 9-10 XDm mags cannot grow.)

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Re: Recommend me a SHTF handgun from this list

Post by Sworbeyegib » Sun Aug 18, 2013 3:43 pm

They are all good guns, there is no wrong choice. Just go with what you shoot the best and what you have the most ammo for. The difference in capabilities between 9mm and .40 is minimal with a good ammo selection, don't let that be a deciding factor.

If the MP is your current carry, and the one you have the most trigger time behind, then I'd say stick with that until you find something you like better.
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Re: Recommend me a SHTF handgun from this list

Post by Das Sheep » Sun Aug 18, 2013 8:24 pm

I would vote the M&P.

You can get 9mm cheaply to stack it deep. Its very easy to have accurate follow up shots with and its all around a good model of pistol.

Have you considered a laser?

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Re: Recommend me a SHTF handgun from this list

Post by Beowolf » Sun Aug 18, 2013 8:31 pm

Well, the M&P is the most functional and concealable weapon I've found (for me). That doesn't necessarily mean it's the one I'm the best shot with. Though I would probably put my accuracy with the M&P and the Sig about similar.

Haven't considered a laser, primarily because I try to keep the bulk down when carrying. Never actually used a laser on a gun.

But I'm glad I have good choices. I'm really tempted to trade the XDm compact in to help pay for the Sig, then pick up a 4.5" XDm later. Even though I can't buy the 16 round mags for the XDm, I can always just buy the weapon without the mags and use the ones I have.
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Re: Recommend me a SHTF handgun from this list

Post by Doctorr Fabulous » Sun Aug 18, 2013 8:36 pm

Beowolf wrote: Haven't considered a laser, primarily because I try to keep the bulk down when carrying. Never actually used a laser on a gun.
Don't. If you're gonna hang something off the front, make it a light, something useful. Inforce APL or a TLR-1 would be my picks.
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Re: Recommend me a SHTF handgun from this list

Post by Beowolf » Sun Aug 18, 2013 9:10 pm

Been wondering about that, too. All of my weapons have rails, and I've been thinking about putting a light on the one I keep in the GunVault in the bedroom. The TLR-1 has been one I've heard a lot about. Good choice there?
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Re: Recommend me a SHTF handgun from this list

Post by crypto » Sun Aug 18, 2013 9:34 pm

yeah the TLR-1 is a good solid light that won't let you down.

I'd recommend buying a light, mags and ammo for the M+P and practicing a lot.
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Re: Recommend me a SHTF handgun from this list

Post by Doctorr Fabulous » Sun Aug 18, 2013 9:35 pm

Beowolf wrote:Been wondering about that, too. All of my weapons have rails, and I've been thinking about putting a light on the one I keep in the GunVault in the bedroom. The TLR-1 has been one I've heard a lot about. Good choice there?
IMO, either or. I like the controls of the TLR-1 better than the APL, but others disagree. Plenty of holsters made for both. Just ordered a Raven Phantom LC for my G22 with a TLR-1, should arrive this week or next week. I think Armadillo and several others make holsters for the TLR-1. I Amazon Primed my TLR-1s for $99 (on sale) and got it two days later.

I second buying more mags for the M&P and getting better with it. My M&P9 shit the bed (bad spring) but while it ran it was awesome.
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Re: Recommend me a SHTF handgun from this list

Post by Beowolf » Sun Aug 18, 2013 10:26 pm

The M&P I just bought came with three mags, so that's pretty awesome. Already had one, and I've got two on backorder (six months now), so I've got four in hand with two to come. Suckers are hard to find!
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Re: Recommend me a SHTF handgun from this list

Post by Halfapint » Sun Aug 18, 2013 11:52 pm

Just my .02.... You have more trigger time behind the S&W use that. BUUUUUUUT of the handguns I've shot I personally like the Springfield XDm way way more. Plus the 9mm would probably be a bit easier to get in SHTF then .40 would be. Just me though
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Re: Recommend me a SHTF handgun from this list

Post by Mr. E. Monkey » Mon Aug 19, 2013 5:10 pm

Beowolf wrote:Here are the choices:
In my possession:
Smith & Wesson M&P 9c, 12 round mags
Springfield XDm .40 Compact, 11 and 16 round mags
Additional option, not yet owned:
Sig Sauer P229 Scorpion, 12 round mags
My brain keeps reading the bolded as a separate item in the list, and I keep interpreting it as a Glock 19. :lol:

Of the handguns listed, my recommendation would be the M&P, because

The S&W is my primary carry. I shoot well with it.
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Re: Recommend me a SHTF handgun from this list

Post by Beowolf » Mon Aug 19, 2013 5:21 pm

I was kind of assuming the M&P would be getting the most votes. :) I do love that gun.
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Re: Recommend me a SHTF handgun from this list

Post by Das Sheep » Mon Aug 19, 2013 5:37 pm

Doctorr Fabulous wrote:
Beowolf wrote: Haven't considered a laser, primarily because I try to keep the bulk down when carrying. Never actually used a laser on a gun.
Don't. If you're gonna hang something off the front, make it a light, something useful. Inforce APL or a TLR-1 would be my picks.
I like grip mounted lasers, such as a lot of the Crimson trace ones.

I am a pretty decent shot, but if I ever need to use my pistol to defend myself I am probably going to be some place decently public, and I want to make sure I don't miss.

A laser, I can only imagine, would be very useful as well in a situation where you need to switch to your pistol for some reason.

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Re: Recommend me a SHTF handgun from this list

Post by RTF_Squared » Mon Aug 19, 2013 5:41 pm

A quick check with a bluegun confirmed my suspicion of the TLR1 not working with an M&PC. The rail is one slot too short. If you're going the light route for the gun in the GunVault and want it to work on all your rails the TLR unfortunately isn't the one. Otherwise a great light.

Das Sheep, a laser is only spot on POA/POI at one specific distance, and can't be seen when using proper sight picture. It doesn't offer any added insurance against missing your target compared to properly utilizing the sights.
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Re: Recommend me a SHTF handgun from this list

Post by Beowolf » Mon Aug 19, 2013 6:03 pm

Good to know on the TLR, for sure. Luckily, though, I wouldn't be using it on the M&P. That would be for either the XDm or the (perhaps) P229. :)
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Re: Recommend me a SHTF handgun from this list

Post by Doctorr Fabulous » Mon Aug 19, 2013 6:48 pm

Das Sheep wrote:
Doctorr Fabulous wrote:
Beowolf wrote: Haven't considered a laser, primarily because I try to keep the bulk down when carrying. Never actually used a laser on a gun.
Don't. If you're gonna hang something off the front, make it a light, something useful. Inforce APL or a TLR-1 would be my picks.
I like grip mounted lasers, such as a lot of the Crimson trace ones.

I am a pretty decent shot, but if I ever need to use my pistol to defend myself I am probably going to be some place decently public, and I want to make sure I don't miss. That's what your sights are for.

A laser, I can only imagine, would be very useful as well in a situation where you need to switch to your pistol for some reason.
The laser discussion always goes like this.
"I've never seen someone be any faster or more accurate at combat speed with a laser than with a decent set of sights."
"Well it took some practice and I had to dial the laser in to cowitness with the sights."
"So you spent extra time shooting a new way just to learn to aim down your sights?"
"Yeah."

If they aren't aligned with the sights, then they aren't aligned with the point of impact (or the sights are fucked up) and you're not going to be hitting where you're aiming. Ditto what RTF said about them only being "on" at the set range. Not a lot of variance, but enough to miss if you rely on them. Then add in that they don't show up as big angry zits like they do on TV, especially in daylight or on clothing. A have a green 10mW (532nM) laser I popped fresh batteries in to do a little test. Local time is 7pm, Central Florida, about 60% illumination.
First, an inside shot, ambient light only. Not bad, easy to pick up.
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5 yards, pointed at the bushes. Couldn't see it, so I ended up having to point it next to my feet and follow it with my eyes to make sure I could actually get it in the picture. Disappeared as soon as I hit the bush.
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Not satisfied, I thought we'd take a second to examine the difference between reflective and nonreflective surfaces. I stepped back a bit and went to 3yd on the pavers. Can you see it?
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Now 20yd to my garage. Again, had to hold the laser next to my eye and "sight" along it just o figure out where the laser was.
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Lastly, moved the truck and did one 10 steps (8yd?) from the garage, right on the nice reflective white paint.
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If anyone thinks the pictures are too small, PM me and I'll email you the originals in full size. Now, with a red (lower visible band) laser 1/2 that power, you really think you're going to be faster or more accurate with that laser?

To anyone reading this, if you spent less than $120 on that laser, it's probably shit for mounting on a weapon. If you paid more than that, sit back and think about how much you spent and how many boxes of ammo that would have paid for, or in some cases how many hours of professional instruction that would have bought. For the price of a CrimsonTrace set locally, I could have Bowie Tactical mount my RMR with a set of Trijicon sights and have $100 towards paying off the RMR itself, and I guarantee MRDS on a handgun beats laser on a handgun.

I will defer to Dave, who mentioned the one time I would like to have a laser on a handgun. If I had to shoot offset (behind a riot shield, for instance) or I was shooting with an IR laser in the retina-burning range with NVDs, then I'd be all over a laser the same way I was with my PEQ16 with NVDs. Since I can afford neither a riot shield not NVDs, I will put weapon mounted lasers back in their box with ghost-ring sights and tactical glassbreakers for handguns.
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Re: Recommend me a SHTF handgun from this list

Post by In_The_Pitt » Tue Aug 20, 2013 12:49 am

No surprise here: M&P9 compact. Small loss of rounds from 12 to 10rds. If its legal, bet the Arredondo +6rd base plates from Brownells or Midway for more rounds on tap. TLR3 light should work on you 9c (if you want to bling it up or use in on the nightstand).
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Re: Recommend me a SHTF handgun from this list

Post by Beowolf » Wed Sep 04, 2013 7:25 pm

Beowolf wrote:Here are the choices:
In my possession:
Smith & Wesson M&P 9c, 12 round mags
Smith & Wesson M&P Shield 9mm, 7/8 round mags (added)
Springfield XDm .40 Compact, 11 and 16 round mags
Springfield XDm .40 3.8" full size, 16 round mags (added)
Sig Sauer P229 Scorpion, 12 round mags (added)
Additional option, not yet owned:
Sig Sauer P229 Scorpion or P229 Extreme, 15 round mags

New list; amendments noted above. Swapped out the XDm compact for the full size grip version. Stuck with the 3.8" because the 4.5" wasn't available in the LGS. Still wanting the 4.5". Got the Shield for the wife. Got the P229 because I lusted for a Sig again and nothing else fits my hand better. :wink:
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Re: Recommend me a SHTF handgun from this list

Post by missouri dave » Wed Sep 04, 2013 10:14 pm

The only one I have any experience with is the xdm which is my edc. Mine's in .45 loaded with 230 grain gold dots in a crossbreed supertuck.
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Re: Recommend me a SHTF handgun from this list

Post by milesindefilade » Thu Sep 05, 2013 4:41 am

M&P 9c gets my vote. I think an EDC handgun is the best SHTF handgun. The Shield would make a good choice, I'd think.
Mine is a Kahr PM9.


So far as a laser, I think these pay off best when moving and shooting, but I don't think the pay-off is very high. A light is much better, so long as it doesn't get in the way of comfortable carry. For a light to really be of utility a grip-switch is necessary kit.
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Re: Recommend me a SHTF handgun from this list

Post by Mikeyboy » Thu Sep 05, 2013 8:06 am

The oddball is the Sig 229. The Sig is a DA/SA trigger while the S&W M&P and the XDm are not. It gets kind of weird switching between guns with completely different trigger pulls. For me at least, at the range I will shoot a flyer or two before I settle in. That may be a bad thing when the SHTF.

Don't get me wrong Sig makes some great guns, but another issue is acquiring extra mags for a Sig can be expensive.

With that list I would go with the M&P compact and the Shield.

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Re: Recommend me a SHTF handgun from this list

Post by Beowolf » Thu Sep 05, 2013 1:27 pm

I had a DAK (double action only) model for years. I honestly didn't find a lot of difference switching from a SAO Kimber to the Sig given how different the feel of the guns were.

The Sig models I'm considering also have Sig's SRT (short reset trigger), making the pull after the first much more like my old Kimber 1911, but even softer.

I hear what you're saying, though. I have always like DA to begin, though. Maybe I'm just weird. 8-)

EDIT: And right now, mags are hardest to get for the M&P. Readily available for the Sig. Crazy.

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Re: Recommend me a SHTF handgun from this list

Post by Quick Shot xMLx » Thu Sep 05, 2013 6:13 pm

After owning a few .40 guns I have to admit I'm not a fan of the caliber and biased against it. From the choices you listed I like the P229 the best. I really like the SA pull on those guns and they do have the best DA pull out of all the factory DA/SA guns I've handled.

That said there is a benefit to using your carry gun as your SHTF gun, especially when you take into consideration that an M&P operates differently from a P229. I think the 9c is a great gun and the recoil characteristics are great for being a smaller gun. I'm assuming your 9c doesn't have the thumb safety? I think that would influence my decision. If it did I would probably choose the 9c, if it didn't then I would probably go with the P229 as adapting to it would be easier.

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Re: Recommend me a SHTF handgun from this list

Post by Beowolf » Fri Sep 06, 2013 8:38 am

No, I ordered the one with no mag safety and no thumb safety. The thumb safety on the one I tested seemed to get in the way of carrying.
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