I read this blog review this week, and it illustrated my thinking about why I chose to go ahead and get the snubbie .38 vis a newer .380 or a carryable Colt Pocket Hammerless
I read the original article in the American Rifleman, too, and back then it had cemented my decision, based on what I read between the lines in the reviews, but the decision was already made.
The issue: Jovian Thunderbolt wanted a pistol he could conceal in his pocket. That lead to a choice between two pieces of hardware. A .380 semi-auto of some sort, or a snub nosed .38 revolver. I already had a holsterable CCW, but even that was too easily ‘made’ in some wardrobe necessities.
But MBtGE carries a .380, and had reported drawing his carry gun at the range to test it after collecting a month of pocket lint. And it failed. Chocked on debris. He wasn’t pleased.
To add insult to injury, the magazine review of 9 semi-autos all had little quibbles of failure to feed or failure to whatever, and that was WITHOUT lint, presumably. The Luckygunner (Mollenhour) blog goes over these issues and is not pleased either.
All these data points simply reinforced my prejudices. MY prejudices. What works for you may be entirely different, but this is the balance I struck for my pocket carry circumstances.
The concern over the slightly extra bulk a revolver presents faded into the background when reliability earns such high marks. Can a revolver fail or get gummed up on detritus? Yes. Certainly. But it is less likely. Especially compared to the plethora of decent .380s on the market now.
Plus, you know me. With one exception I prefer my guns to 70 years of design testing in the field. A Kel Tec may be great, but the Colt Pocket Hammerless has been out there for 102-108 years. Revolvers even longer.
[I know, I know… there are things in the guts of my revolver that weren’t there 70 years ago. And the basic OS of the Kel Tec may be identical to something with a 100 year old cache. Leave me my illusions on some things… Hey, though, at this rate I can get an AR in 2025 or 2030 at the latest.]
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