I love a good, modern carry gun. The P365 fits my needs just perfectly. However, that doesn’t make it my favorite carry gun. It’s just the one that works best for me. In fact, I feel like a lot of great guns have come and gone without much celebration. Today we are going to look a the five most underrated carry guns.
Beretta 92FS Compact
Some guns really fit into this just right category. The Beretta 92 FS Compact is one of those guns, specifically the railed variant. It’s a bit slimmer and smaller than the full-sized 92FS, but not too small. You could easily conceal the weapon, but it’s big enough to be easy to shoot and control. The rail allows you to add a light, which makes it an option for home defense.
While the Beretta compact isn’t light, it eats up recoil. The DA/SA design remains one of my favorite options for trigger designs and tosses in a decocker-only safety lever, and we are cooking with gas. The Langdon Tactical optics-ready models are exquisite fighting pistols, and the entire Beretta 92 Compact series is criminally underrated.
The KelTec P32
Yep, I’ll stand behind the KelTec P32, and I mean that literally. KelTec has a rough rep from QA issues with their guns. While I can acknowledge their issues, I can say the P32 seems exempt. Maybe it’s because it’s been around for 24 years now. It was the first real modern pocket pistol and remained the lightest on the market.
32 ACP isn’t a ballistic powerhouse, but with the right ammo, it penetrates deep enough to matter. The recoil is fairly light, and the gun is easy to shoot and control. When compared to guns like the LCP or even the P-3AT, the P32 is downright pleasant. At 6.6 ounces, you’ll be hard strapped to find something lighter. The P32 and .32 ACP round, in general, is underrated.
The Walther P99 is a criminally underrated gun. It almost sickens me to see Caniks being so successful when they simply cloned the P99. This DA/SA striker-fired gun is an innovative little firearm that never caught fire. The compact variant was roughly Glock 26-sized with one of the best double-action triggers ever.
The single action was also no joke. The P99c is fairly rare, and if you have one, hold onto it or sell it to me. These guns were reliable, easy to use, lightweight, and packed a punch. Sadly no one seems to like the DA/SA striker-fired design, and they never enjoyed a ton of success. That’s a shame because the gun is solid, just underrated.
CZ Rami 2075
As a flannel-wearing tactical hipster, I love me some CZ, and the 2075 RAMI never got the love it deserved. As the third DA/SA design, I’m starting to see a pattern. These guns came in 9mm and 40 S&W and both metal and polymer frames. Oddly enough, the all-metal versions weighed the same as a Glock 26.
These guns used CZ 75 magazines and came with a flush fitting ten rounder and a 14-rounder with a grip extension. What made these guns stand out was the brilliant ergonomics and ease of control. The Czechs just know how my hands work, and the gun delivered a nice high grip that made controlling it easy and enjoyable. It’s odd, but a very underrated CZ.
Compact Revolvers With 3-Inch Barrels
I don’t care who makes it! Well, I do a little. Snub noses are great, but I really love compact revolvers with 3-inch barrels in .38 or even .357 Magnum. If I was going to carry a .357 Magnum, it would have a 3-inch barrel. Something like the Ruger SP101, or better yet, the new 605 TORO series. They are severely underrated.
The longer barrels make the gun easier to shoot, grant a longer sight radius and add more velocity to that 125-grain JHP. The .38 Special versions, like the 856 TORO, offer six rounds and a pleasant shooting experience. Luckily this genre seems to be growing, and we are getting a few more compact revolvers with 3-inch barrels.
Beyond the Micro Compact
I get it. Guns like the P365 rule these days. Hell, I even carry one. While those guns have some serious advantages, that doesn’t mean they are the best gun for every person or situation. Sometimes you need to look outside the current box, and you’ll be surprised at what you find.