One of my students recently came to the range wanting to learn to shoot her mouse gun for concealed carry. A mouse gun is most often considered a category of small revolvers, or semi-automatic handgun sometimes called a pocket pistol. I’m not going to call out any particular brand every manufacturer has one they say that is intended for concealed carry (CCW) self-defense. Remember these guns need to be holstered even in a pocket or purse. Typically such small pistols are of .380 ACP (9mm Short) caliber or less, with .32 ACP, .25 ACP, .22 Long Rifle, and .22 Short calibers also being common.
One of the things she figured out quickly was that the recoil was hard to manage. Anytime you shoot a short-barreled gun recoil is going to be significant and velocity suffers. It’s harder to get a good solid grip on small guns even with smaller hands.
Then came the bad sights. Most of these small guns have terrible sights and many are not changeable. The sight radius is short on these guns. When referring to iron sights, the sight radius is the distance between the rear sight and the front sight. The longer the sight radius is, the more accurate the shooter is able to be (as the front sight post will appear to be smaller, covering less of the target. A trick I have learned on these mouse guns for concealed carry is to paint the front sight with bright color fingernail polish.
Ease of Operation and Safety
Then the ease of operation and safety come into play. Some have a manual safety some do not. The ones that have a safety many times are not easy to operate. It is very easy to point the muzzle somewhere it’s not supposed to be, and many shooters have put their hand in front of the muzzle trying to operate their mouse gun efficiently. Many of these guns in my experience are not easy to lock open properly and some do not even have the ability to be locked open (slide stop) for inspection and safe handling. Then there is the finger on the trigger problem. It’s easy to get your finger where it doesn’t belong on these little guns. It has been said that these guns are for seasoned gun handlers, not beginners or those just learning.
Then finally the ballistics. Most of these guns shoot a small-caliber round that is less likely to stop an attacker when necessary. As you can read in one of my recent postings on Facebook, tests show that these calibers underperform. Remember velocity is lower because of the short barrel. When the bullet has no velocity it does not expand as it should. So the bottom line is that you have to be an expert shot with your mouse gun to really be able to defend yourself properly.
Ease of Concealment
While it is true that the mouse gun for concealed carry is easy to conceal many of the compact guns are just as easy to conceal and they have much better features to ensure that you can take care of the task you are carrying the gun for in the first place.
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