This is what I did to decide on what to carry, up to you if you want to follow it or not.
I wanted something at least 9mm and at least 10 rounds. That ruled out most true pocketguns. I also want something I can sit down without being TOO uncomfortable. That ruled out everything but the subcompacts. Down to M&PSC, Glock26, XDSC, SR9C. From there I picked the thinnest one. SR9C. I carry with safety on and practice flicking it off during the draw, every time (90% of my shooting is done from draw). Carry ammo is speer gold dot +p. I honestly hardly notice the differences in recoil in both my carry and competition gun. I rock it with the safety on because I am not comfortable with the striker fired trigger pull. (much prefer heavy DA for carry)
I had a pretty similar process, myself. But I went with the pistol I had experience with in other models and a preference for because I liked it's handling and I ended up with a Gen 4 Glock 26 as my current carry piece. I can't even feel it when I carry it.
Nothing handheld is a reliable stopper.
My priorities (when I carried) were: concealability, and how well I shot with that particular firearm. All other considerations were secondary.
My first piece was a sig 232 in 380, and later a sig 229 in 9mm.
Conealability is a big one. Ergomomics was also a big deal for me; a good grip being crutial to accuracy. As far as caliber goes I decided on a .40. Less recoil equates to a more accurate, higher rate of fire - yet still a decient sized round.
Money and devil got it right - the gun you will carry, and that you can hit something with, is the one you want. If that's a .32, fine, as long as you HAVE IT.
I carry a Springfield XD in either 9mm or .45, great guns.
I do not have a CCW Permit.
if my local police chief approved my CCA Permit, I'd carry an "officers" sized (3" bbl) slim and compact 6+1 45ACP in a holster, that can be concealed under a t-shirt, wearing shorts, during a hot day in the summer.
Penetration's vital, for fighting (or for loving) and pistols are backups to rifles or shotguns.
#1) Reliability. Never had a revolver jam on me. :)
#2) Ease of use. It's worthless if you struggle to use it in a situation where you're down 50 IQ points, like just waking up.
#3) Comfort. Easy to wear/conceal.
Everybody is built different. I like a Taurus revolver in .357. My wife likes hers in .38 since it doesn't hurt to shoot. My tiny, church secretary mom can only comfortably use a semi-auto .380. I don't think there's one answer. If you have an indoor range that will let you rent out or otherwise try various pistols, shop around until your comfortable. Can't go wrong with that.
P232 = beautiful!
Originally Posted by vashanka
when you start carrying, you might rethink that. Weight is a lot more noticeable than you think when you have it on you all the time. Some have no problems carrying heavy pistols though.
Originally Posted by charlie echo
Power isn't unimportant. To me, personally, anytihng .380ACP and above is "good enough."
So as long as you stick with a caliber .380 and above, I think you're fine using the said criteria on this page: whatever you like is what you carry.
i have to point out the logic in that statement though. Isn't the whole point of inquiries of this thread, so you can adjust what you like? If what you like is crap, then you better start disliking it.
The choice to go with a 9mm automatic was a personal one, I wouldn't scuff at anyone carrying a .38 special. It is definitely "good enough."
I'm convinced penetration is critical though. If I can't do at least .380ACP and stuck with calibers like a .32 or .25, I think i might rather go for a .22LR, hopefully with a lot of ammo capacity.