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  1. #1
    Wyatt's Avatar
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    Where's the industry on mag disconnects?

    I was looking over the California Approved List and the certifications on most of the 1,300+ guns on it come up at various times in 2008. I'm assuming that these guns will not be re-approved without mag disconnects and I was wondering where the industry is on this. Is the industry going in this direction or are they writing off marketing guns in places like California.

    I know the auto makers have to bend over on CA emissions and other stuff because it is such a big market to them (everyone buys a car), but perhaps the handgun market here is not that big that the gun mfg's want to bother. And I don't know what other states have/will go in this direction to make it worthwhile for the industry to add this to their line-ups.

    Specifically, I was looking at a Kahr PM9. This is currently an approved gun, but the approval expires later this year. On the Kahr website it currently states this gun does not have a disconnect. While the gun is available for sale right now, as it stands w/o the disconnect, in another few months the gun can no longer be sold in CA.

    I was just wondering (especially you guys in the business) what is the trend in the industry, is it going towards this for all guns? Or, maybe just where they decide they need to, like in service sized guns so they can sell the LE markets in places like CA. I'd be bummed if none of the subcompacts get equipped with disconnects and they all fall off the list.

    Thanks.

  2. #2
    Mike Barham's Avatar
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    I think some companies will just cede the California market. It's already happening with smaller manufacturers, and the more complex the rules get, the fewer choices Californians will have (unless they're LE, and the rules for mere citizens don't apply).

    I don't know how easy or difficult it would be to retrofit a design that doesn't have a mag safety as part of the original design. Presumably it would be easier on some guns that others, but I strongly suspect it would be more difficult on small gun versus larger ones.

    Kahr isn't a huge manufacturer, and I don't know if their California sales justify redesigning their guns - and perhaps making them less reliable in the process. I'd get the PM9 sooner rather than later, if I were you.

    I certainly hope Glock and some others don't muck up ALL their guns with useless extra "safeties" just to appease the masters in California. Springfield seems happy to tack on afterthought safeties, though, so maybe XDs will still be available after the deadline.
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  3. #3
    Wyatt's Avatar
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    I thought about that but the problem with buying the Kahr now is that my interest in the gun is based on pursuing a CCW. You have to submit all firearms (up to three) that you want on record for the CCW and these have to be inspected by the Sheriff's armory for certification. I've got to believe that if it is not on the approved list I would not be allowed to carry it. So even if I buy it now, if I don't get the CCW until after the cert. expires (June for the xx93 and August for the xx94) then it's not worth it to me. My only reason for buying a subcompact (right now anyway) is to carry it.

    Even the best case where I got both the CCW and the Kahr before it fell off the list, it would be good for at most the 2 years until the CCW has to be renewed. That's alot of scratch for a gun with a two year useful life.

    I guess for the few who do have CCW's, if you can't carry a small gun then, what the heck, just carry a .357 and be done with it. At least that eliminates being under-powered when on the streets!

  4. #4
    Mike Barham's Avatar
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    Well, if I couldn't carry a KelTec or a Kahr in my pocket, I'd go straight to a J-frame .38 revolver and not look back.
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  5. #5
    Wyatt's Avatar
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    Of course, that's only good until California mandates cylinder disconnects.

    This is

  6. #6
    Wyatt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Barham View Post
    Well, if I couldn't carry a KelTec or a Kahr in my pocket, I'd go straight to a J-frame .38 revolver and not look back.
    OMG, a revolver! I almost forgot, I like revolvers!!!

    I was hung up on the capacity thing, only 5 holes in a J frame. But, if the higher capacity magazine guns are not an option, well...

    That S&W model 637 in +p is a nice looking gun. But I notice they offer some J's chambered for 357. Is this not a good option for street carry in a short barrel / small frame revolver?

    Also, what are the +- of exposed/enclosed/shrouded hammers? If you have a preference, why? The only thing I can think of is the enclosed hammer is less likely to get caught up when drawing from a pocket. Are they all equally reliable?

    BTW, are there any significant drawbacks to an aluminum frame?
    Last edited by Wyatt; 02-21-2008 at 09:43 PM.

  7. #7
    Mike Barham's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wyatt View Post
    I was hung up on the capacity thing, only 5 holes in a J frame. But, if the higher capacity magazine guns are not an option, well...
    I think 5 reliable shots is fine for a pocket gun. The PM9 and KelTec only hold a few more.

    That S&W model 637 in +p is a nice looking gun. But I notice they offer some J's chambered for 357. Is this not a good option for street carry in a short barrel / small frame revolver?
    I'd personally pass on the .357s. Full-charge magnum loads exhibit vicious recoil in these little guns. It hurts, but far more importantly, it makes split times (time between shots) dangerously long, should you need follow-up shots or face multiple opponents. The magnums often also have much more muzzle blast and flash, neither of which are helpful in a fight.

    Also, what are the +- of exposed/enclosed/shrouded hammers? If you have a preference, why? The only thing I can think of is the enclosed hammer is less likely to get caught up when drawing from a pocket. Are they all equally reliable?
    Shrouded and enclosed hammers are all reliable, as are bobbed hammers generally - though milquetoast mentioned some reliability problems with an older, bobbed J-Smith in a recent thread.

    I like the enclosed hammers, as on the Smith 642, for example. For defense, revolvers are normally fired DA, so you lose nothing by omitting the SA capability. The enclosed hammers are slick and snag-free.

    The shrouded "Bodyguard" style allows thumb-cocking, but I think that's pretty pointless in a defensive pocket gun. Some people will undoubtedly disagree.

    I would sweat reliability with any of the designs, assuming a quality revolver like a Smith.

    BTW, are there any significant drawbacks to an aluminum frame?
    They're lighter than steel frames, so they kick more.

    Small revolvers are excellent pocket guns. I used on for that mission for years. I do like my KelTec better as a pocket gun, but the J-Smith is also a great option.
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