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What the Pew Pew Writers Carry [2017]

Several of you have been asking the question “What do you recommend for carry?”.  Well, that’s kind of  a big question, and it has a lot of answers.  Choosing a CCW gun is an intensely personal decision, and all we can really do as advise you on what to look for in your carry gun, and talk about what we ourselves carry.

Which is what we’re going to do today.  I rounded up some of our writers and asked them what they were carrying, and here’s what they came back with.

Note: This isn’t all the writers, but we’ll be updating in waves so be sure to check back in for more of our personal carry choices.

Annette’s Carry Guns

While I try not to have a “carry rotation,” I do need different-sized guns for different occasions. Right now, my concealed carry needs are met by these three:

Glock 19

My current EDC is a Glock 19 equipped with a >Tau Development Group Striker Control Device and a few other goodies, carried in a PHLster Classic.  A 19 is a lot of gun for someone my size, but I’m able to conceal it in most casual clothing.  Since I carry in the appendix position, I really appreciate the SCD as an extra layer of safety while I’m reholstering, something not yet available in any other striker-fired gun.

Glock 19 Carry Gun

As a nearly full-size gun, it’s extremely shootable which means I can be confident that if I need to shoot, I will make the necessary hits.  Plus since I’m relatively petite and need to trade off carrying a spare magazine for other items like my pepper spray and tourniquet, it’s nice to have 15+1 rounds in the gun itself.  The Glock also has the advantage of being one of the most supported platforms in the aftermarket.  That means parts, accessories, and service like sights, holsters, and gunsmithing are readily accessible.

SIG Sauer P320 Subcompact


When I need something a little smaller because I need to conceal my gun better, in more formfitting clothing, I carry a SIG Sauer P320 Subcompact.  Mine is 9mm and almost entirely stock.  While it’s substantially smaller than my Glock 19, I only lose three rounds of capacity.  Since my competition gun is a full size P320, I am intimately familiar with the platform and that makes a big difference in my comfort level in trusting my life to this gun. 

SIG Sauer P320 with Springer Precision magazine well and extensions
The author’s personal 3-gun pistol, a SIG Sauer P320 with Springer Precision magazine well and extensions.

I have my hands on my competition P320 nearly every day in practice and while my Subcompact isn’t quite the same, it’s similar enough that almost all of my skills with the gun transfer.  That means I give up less in performance than I would with another, similarly-sized gun.  I’m also well assured of my gun’s reliability because of my familiarity with P320s generally, and have excellent aftermarket support as a result of my immersion with the platform in other contexts.

Kahr P380

Sometimes, I have to dress in a way where almost no gun can be hidden except my diminutive Kahr P380.  I don’t usually have pockets in my girl-pants that are big enough for the gun, but it’s very easy to tuck away in a low-profile AIWB holster or even a Flashbang bra holster  (but never a Lethal Lace holster).  I don’t like to carry this gun a lot because it’s harder to shoot well than my larger carry guns and it is lower capacity with a smaller caliber, but given the choice of no gun or my P380?

Kahr P380

I’ll go with my P380 every time because it’s a gun I can carry in any outfit, no matter what the occasion.  I’ve also shot it enough to know that it’s reliable with all of the ammunition I use, and with night sights, an oversized slide release, and the ability to lock back on an empty magazine, I find it less difficult to aim and manipulate than other microguns.

Brandon’s Carry Guns

Glock 19 (Again)

I think the G19 is one of the most balanced CCW handguns out there. That’s not to say that there aren’t guns that are easier to conceal carry than the G19, but you’re probably not going to find many handguns that have the same dependability and affordable sticker price as the G19.  And as long as you’re not wearing super slimfit clothing, it’s a pretty easy gun to conceal. Personally, I recommend dressing in clothing a little baggy or wearing fall/winter wear when concealing it – at least with the older models.  My G19 is a Gen3, so it’s a little bigger than the Gen4 and 5 models.

glock 19 profile
Glock 19

Aside from that, the G19 is a pretty straightforward gun – it’s a Glock, so you know that it’s going to be hardy and accurate.

Springfield XD-S

While I don’t have a Springfield XD-S of my own, I was lucky enough to get some range time with my buddy’s 3.3” 9mm and now I’m considering making that my next purchase.  I was surprised at how comfortable the gun felt, both in my hand and when it’s holstered.

Springfield XDS .45 vs 9mm
XDS in .45 ACP and 9mm over at

Another reason why the XD-S is in my top-three list of best CCW pistols is its variety. Since it comes in two available sizes, the 3.3” model and the 4” version, you’re able to choose what’s more important to you: easier carrying or easier shooting. But even if you go with the slightly larger option, you still won’t have any problems making the XD-S your daily CCW pistol.

Note: Along with the 9mm, you can get the XD-S two other calibers: .40S&W (only available for the 3.3”) and .45ACP.

Smith & Wesson M&P Bodyguard BG38

You probably didn’t expect to see a revolver make my top-three CCW list.  The truth is that I’m a big fan of wheel guns, and the .38 Spl is a dependable cartridge that has more than proven its effectiveness in self-defense scenarios.  On top of that, the Bodyguard’s small frame and snubnose barrel makes it a comfortable gun to carry around, and its hammerless design helps ensures that you get a snag-free draw every time.  Overall, the Bodyguard is a reliable pistol that’s easy to conceal and packs a powerful punch. For this reason, I prefer this gun over other pocket pistols, like the .380.

Travis’ Carry Guns

CZ P09

I have two carry guns, but I don’t carry them at the same time.  Recently I’ve taken to carrying a full sized gun.  My gun of choice being the CZ P09 in a strongside OWB holster.  I alternate between my HTC light bearing holster and my Alien Gear Cloak Mod OWB holster.  I prefer the larger gun due to it’s full sized grip, it’s longer sight radius and well, 21 rounds of 9mm is comforting.

Holstered CZ P09
OWB Carry with CZ PO9 is totally possible…IWB is another story

I stopped caring about printing and started carrying something I felt gave me the sharpest edge.  I’ve upgraded the trigger with  a Cajun Gun Works short reset kit and have put a few thousand rounds downrange.  I’m confident in the gun as a platform, and run it with the decocker.

Walther PPS

My second gun is my alternative in situations where I can’t carrying a full sized gun do to dress requirements and do something subtle.  I go with the classic Walther PPS.  It’s a 9mm with a long grip, it’s superbly thin, and provides me 9 rounds of 9mm. It’s not quite a pocket pistol but with my Clinger Gear No Print wonder I carry discretely and comfortably. The Walther is a simple, no nonsense concealed carry gun that’s plenty modular. You can swap the backstraps for comfort, as well as the magazine size for a flush or extended fit.

Walther PPS M2
Walther PPS M2

Both guns have never let me down, and hopefully never will.

Parting Shots

There we have it folks, our first round of author carry guns.  We’ll be regularly updating this with the other author’s carry guns, as well as the editorial staff’s selections, so be sure to check back in as we add things.  Hopefully this has given you some inspiration for your own carry choices, and will help you out when picking one for yourself.  Whether its your first gun, or your fifth.

Once you’ve gotten your carry gun, check out our Best Concealed Carry Holsters and also Best CCW Insurance Review.

What do you think about our choices?  Any questions for our authors?  Let us know in the comments below!

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14 Leave a Reply

  • Alan

    Update this. The Glock G43X is seriously in the game now! Definitely becoming a favorite!

    September 14, 2020 6:12 pm
  • Beau Bales

    I may be a Springfield fanboy but nothing tops the Hellcat to me.

    It absolutely disappears (smaller than a lot of .380s), has amazing factory sights, and the flush mag fits 11 rds of 9mm.

    My BUG / alternate EDC is my Springfield XDs .45 3.3 with Truglo sights. Love that one and it packs a whallop.

    IDPA / USPSA is my XD-m 4.5 Tactical Elite.

    June 2, 2020 12:31 pm
  • Jeff Jackson Jackson

    Walther PPS in 9mm and Alien gear IWB, spare mag in pocket. Slim, comfortable, and if you need anything more you shouldn't be where your at!!

    April 1, 2018 12:46 am
  • Andrew

    S&w M&P Shield in 9mm. Get it without the safety, less to fumble with, your index appendage is the safety. Great shooter, very comfortable size and weight, doesn't print. Goes bang everytime I have pulled the trigger. Load it up with some quality defensive rounds and you are good to go.

    December 8, 2017 10:46 am
  • that Guy

    winter carry with full clothing is an .45ACP. Summer carry is a Ruger SP-101 in .357 Mag on a high hip leather snap holster. my fancy clothing /going out is a Sig P230 in .380. use the tool that fits the situation, don't use a sledge hammer for finnish work.

    November 27, 2017 11:55 am
  • Mike

    Brandon must have a better job than me since he brands the Glock 19 "affordable."

    I'm a new CCW, and Travis' comment, "... stopped caring about printing...," raised an eyebrow. Most training info I've seen emphasizes the concealed aspect as almost as important as the gun choice itself. I'm carrying a Ruger 9E because it actually IS affordable, can be concealed without dressing like a hobo (OWB Stealth Operator compact holster) and provides the peace of mind 17+1 capacity brings.

    My newbie status means I'm still angsting about people noticing a hint of print... but I'm trying to get over that.

    Great article; I'm looking forward to seeing entries from the other writers. Heck, I'm a writer and would be happy to contribute as I walk this path and learn the ropes.

    November 27, 2017 6:47 am
    • Terry

      I have an SR9C as my CCW and I love it. 10±1 or 17+1. I know it's similar to the 9E so I have to say you picked a great gun by a great company for a very reasonable price.

      November 29, 2017 11:16 pm
    • Bobo

      I can't say for sure what Travis meant about not caring about printing, but I'd be willing to bet that he's come to realize (as will you) that the Vast majority of people won't ever notice if your shirt is clinging to your side-arm....hell a lot wouldn't notice if you were open carrying. As for the goblin thugs that you might encounter, I doubt many of them would notice you were printing either as they tend not to be the brightest bulbs in the box if you know what I mean.

      Now having said that, there are (or used to be) some states/municipalities where printing can be considered "brandishing" and get the legal carrier in trouble, but I'm pretty sure those are few and far between these days.

      December 4, 2017 4:23 pm
      • Mike

        Thanks for sharing your thoughts, Bobo. It seems like the world is divided into two opinions on carrying: One should never, ever print, or one should make a reasonable effort not to print, follow sensible guidelines for concealed carry, and get on with life.

        I am working toward adhering to the latter as being the most sensible option.

        December 5, 2017 5:41 am
  • Edward

    Well, to each his own, but, I will NEVER own or carry a Glock. I have had too many cop friends tell me horror stories about their Glock carry days and why they will never carry one again.

    November 26, 2017 4:18 pm
    • Jeff Sheldon

      Edward, I'd like to know why your Cop friends would never own a Glock?

      I'm retired LAPD and carried a lot of different guns in both uniformed and undercover assignments. If I could only have one gun it would be a Glock, probably a Glock 23. Know why, because it always, say again, alway, goes bang. On top of that they are lightweight, hold a bunch of bullets, have less felt recoil and did I mention, they always go bang.

      November 26, 2017 4:51 pm
      • Bobo

        No Jeff, the one you had always went bang....Glock's while at one time were typically more reliable then other guns, don't always go bang, and weren't/aren't the mythical firearms people make them out to be (some even went kaboom or went bang when you didn't intend them to) They also weren't/aren't any more accurate then other pistols.

        These day's, there are plenty of "plastic fantastic" pistols out there that are as reliable and accurate (or more so) then Glock's and a lot of them simply feel better in the hand. The Biggest thing Glock has going for it is the aftermarket support.

        Having said that, I'm not saying they are bad in anyway and I do own a Glock that's never given me an ounce of trouble but it's also one of the few guns I Would consider selling or trading for something else I was interested in.

        Ed, like Jeff, I too would be interested in hearing what your LEO friends said as to why they wouldn't own one....

        December 4, 2017 4:28 pm
        • Jeff Sheldon

          BoBo, you're smok'in your socks!!

          If a gun "went kaboom or went bang when you didn't intend them (sic) to" then you screwed up dude!! Guns do not shoot by themselves, and if you think they do then you should not be carrying one.

          As to accuracy, all modern day handguns are capable of scoring in a gunfight, if they don't it is the driver's fault.

          Glocks are carried by the majority of the Law Enforcement agencies in this country. That has to say something. Glocks always fire, say again, always fire, on top of that they hold a bunch of bullets, are light weight, have less felt recoil than most other hand guns and look cool!!!

          Again, tell me about your LEO friends who are down on Glocks..I would like to know why.

          December 4, 2017 9:02 pm
          • Jeff Sheldon

            Sorry BoBo, the last sentence was directed to Ed,

            December 4, 2017 9:09 pm
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