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  • Back-up gun recommendations

    My dept. will let me carry anything as a back-up gun, HOWEVER, if I want them to back me in court if I'm involved in a shooting off-duty, I have to carry a department-approved firearm:

    Any Sig .380 or above,
    Any Colt, S&W, or Ruger .38 or above

    I wish I could carry my H&K USP40, but would appreciate the defense in court. . . .

    Guess I now have a good excuse to get another gun, tax-deductible!

    Any thoughts?
    He who fights with monsters should look to it that he himself does not become a monster. And when you gaze long into an abyss the abyss also gazes into you.
    -- Nietzsche

    Certainly there is no hunting like the hunting of man and those who have hunted armed men long enough and liked it, never really care for anything else thereafter.
    -- Hemingway

  • #2
    How about the Sig P239? I've heard ALOT of great things about it and have run about 200 rounds through a 9mm version. It seemed like a decent gun, though I have a strong preference for Glocks. It's definately the smallest Sig in a decent caliber. Another one to look at would be the P245, if you prefer the 45auto. It is also quite small.

    Can't go wrong with a good snub revolver either, though. I would still go with the auto because of the reloading speed and typically slightly larger capacity and thinner profile.
    Nobody ever wants to have to fight, but its a darn good idea for someone to know how.

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    • #3
      I have shot the P239 in .40 and liked it, recoil was more than manageable, accuracy was excellent. I have heard good things about the P229 compact, which is a slightly larger frame design. I have never shot a P245 though. If you could carry whatever, I am partial to GLOCK.
      A.F.& A.M.
      "Fortitudine Vinicimus" By Endurance we conquer.
      "Rangers Lead the Way."

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      • #4
        Smith and wesson SW99 9mm or 40cal 3.5 barrel or 4.25
        "In these modern times, many men are wounded for not having weapons or knowledge of their use."
        -Achille Marozzo, 1536

        Ne Obliviscaris - Do Not Forget

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        • #5
          I've carried the 9mm SIG 239 as a back-up gun in both vest and ankles holsters. It's a good gun, but you might fund it somewhat heavy for that role. That said, many officers swear by snubnose revolvers for back-up purposes.

          I am somewhat befuddled by your comment that the department will let you carry anything as a back-up, but will only back you in court if you use an approved firearm. Does the department have two lists, less-approved and more-approved weapons?

          That said, the department will be hard-pressed not to back you in a clean shooting with a back-up weapon. The agency will inevitably be included in any lawsuit following a shooting. If they don't back you, they increase their liability exposure to claims of negligent supervision, negligent training, negligent assignment, negligent entrustment, and negligent retention (and probably some other negligents I haven't included).
          John from Maryland

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          • #6
            Backup Gun

            Backup Guns (once Nicknamed Throwdowns) Can Be A Sensitive Subject With Fellow Coppers And Agency Brass...present Day Gun Gurus And Side Street Commandos Will All Refer To High Speed Low Drag Autos But If You Look At The Tactical Reasons For A Backup Gun (not A Second Gun) I Think You Will Admitt The Case For A Good Reliable Small Frame Revolver. For Years The Lapd (yea My Dept.) Uses By Policy A .38 Snubnose Wheelgun. The Backup Is Exactly That, A Close Encounter "oh Crap" Weapon For Use When Your Primary Sidearm Is Not Practical Or Available. One Common Reason Is Fighting On Ground With Suspect Who Is Trying To Get Your Primary. For Close Up Contact Shots There Is No Slide To Be Pushed Out Of Battery, No Mag To Drop And No Ejection Related Malfunction. The Small Wheelgun Can Also Be Carried In Pants Pocket Where It Is Reachable While You Are Struggling Vs The Ankle Holster. If It Is A Second Weapon You Desire Instead Of A "backup" I Prefer The .12ga Shotgun. Keep It Safe.

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            • #7
              Valley, you are off just a tad. A 'throwdown gun' was a cheap gun carried to 'throw down' after a shooting when you found the outlaw was, in fact, unarmed. Not a good idea with today's forensic capabilities.

              BTW, you don't need to Capitalize every word, it makes your post harder to read.
              "A man who has nothing which he cares about more than he does about his personal safety is a miserable creature who has no chance of being free, unless made and kept so by the existing of better men than himself."
              John Stuart Mill

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              • #8
                I carry a Sig P232, (.380) in a belly band holster. You should choose a gun that is comfortable for you to wear day in and day out, otherwise after a while you will probably end up not wearing it. I can't justify carrying a .40 or .45 as a "backup" weapon. They will be much larger, heavier and more uncomfortable to wear (in my opinion) than a smaller caliber/frame weapon. As far as "needing" a larger caliber, the majority of officer involved shootings occur at point blank range. I always thought that with the right ammunition and shot placement, a .380 will kill you just as dead as a .45 if you make your shots count. Be safe.

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                • #9
                  Whatever you buy, spend the money on a good holster. Your back will thank you.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by John from Maryland

                    I am somewhat befuddled by your comment that the department will let you carry anything as a back-up, but will only back you in court if you use an approved firearm. Does the department have two lists, less-approved and more-approved weapons?

                    That said, the department will be hard-pressed not to back you in a clean shooting with a back-up weapon. The agency will inevitably be included in any lawsuit following a shooting. If they don't back you, they increase their liability exposure to claims of negligent supervision, negligent training, negligent assignment, negligent entrustment, and negligent retention (and probably some other negligents I haven't included).
                    Well, the way my Sergeant explained it to me sounded a bit confusing also. Let me try to restate it: As a CCW holder and citizen, I can carry whatever I want. However, if I want the backing of the P.D. in court (verifying my training, qualifying with gun, claiming me as "one of their's," etc.) I will carry one on their departmentally-approved back-up/off-duty gun list. I'm just a rookie, so I'm not going to buck it, I'm just going to look for one on the approved list.

                    Based on everyone's recommendations and my own preference, I will seek out a P232 or small-frame .357 at my local gun shops. Thanks ya'll!

                    Brandon
                    He who fights with monsters should look to it that he himself does not become a monster. And when you gaze long into an abyss the abyss also gazes into you.
                    -- Nietzsche

                    Certainly there is no hunting like the hunting of man and those who have hunted armed men long enough and liked it, never really care for anything else thereafter.
                    -- Hemingway

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                    • #11
                      OK, that makes sense. While the agency would probably have to defend your use of force (decision to engage, decision to shoot, and so forth) to protect their self-interests after a shooting, your firearms instructors would be unable to testify on your training and qualification if the mechanics of the weapon became an issue.

                      Good luck and be safe.
                      John from Maryland

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                      • #12
                        For a last ditch defense weapon, ie: backup gun, I'd carry a little revolver than an auto, for the reasons listed above. Revolvers just work. Even if the cylinder is locked by debris or being held in place, that's still one shot which will get off. I don't think your backup gun needs 10 rounds. When your pulling it, its usually one on one, very close and personal.
                        N. A. Corbier
                        Moderator, SecurityInfoWatch Forums
                        Visiting Commando Leader

                        If you work in private security, feel free to register on Officer.com's sister site for security, forums.securityinfowatch.com

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                        • #13
                          Nacorbier, what is to keep me from firing the one round in the chamber of my semi-auto back up gun?
                          And, if a revolver cylinder is locked in place, you are not getting any rounds off.
                          "A man who has nothing which he cares about more than he does about his personal safety is a miserable creature who has no chance of being free, unless made and kept so by the existing of better men than himself."
                          John Stuart Mill

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Mitchell_in_CT
                            Whatever you buy, spend the money on a good holster. Your back will thank you.
                            I hope this isn't a suggestion for carrying one in the small of your back. That is not allowed at my dept, or most in the area. We had an officer carry there and go down and break his back, career OVER.

                            I carry in my vest, which still sucks, but I have a Kimber Ultra Carry .45 and it is too heavy for my boot. Find a comfy place, but I wouldn't suggest the small of the back.
                            When I'll be the girl that you love, you'll be the boy that I hate...

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Quopper
                              I hope this isn't a suggestion for carrying one in the small of your back. That is not allowed at my dept, or most in the area. We had an officer carry there and go down and break his back, career OVER.

                              I carry in my vest, which still sucks, but I have a Kimber Ultra Carry .45 and it is too heavy for my boot. Find a comfy place, but I wouldn't suggest the small of the back.

                              No, just a suggestion that however you carry the weapon, buy a good holster for it.

                              If you carry on the waistline or pocket, then the weight will be on your back, and you want to reduce as much as possible any strain on your back.

                              You mentioned vest carry sucks. I'm not in LE, but I assume you mean carrying in your body armor?

                              I have a kimber ultra carry, and while its a nice gun for IWB, DAM...I hope yours is an alloy frame...that must get tiresome after a few hours carrying it on your chest, to think nothing of what would happen to the finish if it caught a bullet...

                              Have you thought about carrying at 9 O'Clock IWB under your uniform shirt in a holster like a handed Galco USA tuckable? It would not be visible to the public but accessable to you once you pull up your shirt.

                              I'm not sure if they make a lefty version, but if they do, it may be an alternative to carrying it in your vest. If they don't you could have one custom made from a number of good leather people.

                              I use that style holster for a glock 30, an Ultra Carry or a Colt D frame and the gun doesn't print unless and holds securely.

                              Just an idea.
                              Last edited by Mitchell_in_CT; 08-29-2005, 09:05 AM.

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