CARRYING A FIREARM is a personal and serious issue.
Where legal, being able to conceal a handgun for defense is one of those privileges that no one should take lightly. It could very well be the barrier between life and death.
Although relatively few people who carry ever have to draw their weapon in defense, myriad factors go into this issue that everyone should think about. They range from the very practical to the tactical.
Good advice for choosing a defensive handgun according to CZ-USA is to get the most powerful handgun you can handle that you will actually have with you.
“When we want a handgun for concealed carry, light weight and compact size become desirable features,” a CZ spokesman said. “The CZ P-01 is compact, lightweight and very easy to shoot and with 14 rounds of 9mm it carries an impressive payload of firepower. The subcompact CZ 75 RAMI is even smaller and lighter, easier to conceal and carry, still delivers 11 rounds of 9mm or eight of .40, but the tradeoff is that it is more difficult to master than the larger models.”
A newer model, the CZ P10S (Optics Ready) sports a 3.5-inch barrel and carries 12 rounds, which should make it a popular choice with those who choose to carry.
The spokesman noted that even uniformed law enforcement officers carry lighter weight guns on their duty belts these days.
Does this mean that the full size, heavy defensive pistol is obsolete?
According to CZ the best defensive handgun for the house or car is the most powerful one you can handle.
“Even the .45 ACP CZ 97 or Dan Wesson Valor 1911 will easily fit in the drawer of your bedside table or the glove box of your car,” according to CZ. “The diminutive Smart Car, while too small for just about everything, is still big enough to hold a full-sized handgun.”
TF&G Shooting Columnist Dustin Ellermann said you should always get hands on experience with your pistol before purchasing.
“Make sure you can adequately rack the slide, reach the slide stop lever, decocking button, safety,
and magazine release without losing your firing
grip. And better yet: try the trigger. If the shop you are buying from doesn’t allow you to dry fire the pistol (with the exception of some rimfires that would actually damage the gun), set it down and go give someone else your business,” he said.
There are many different trigger actions to choose from and you need one that fits your preference.
“Some folks like a double action only with a long steady pull, others prefer single action 1911 style with an external safety while I personally I like a crisp striker fired pistol. You can’t go wrong with any type as long as you train proficiently, but decide this before purchasing,” he said.
TF&G shooting blogger Shane Smith said he doubts there is a person alive that has never heard the old saying of “practice makes perfect”.
“The sad fact of the matter is that it is a very untrue and slanted statement. If you practice wrong, you have done anything but make perfect. You have set your body and mind up for failure. We are practicing to retain the muscle memory needed to act in an instant when we are required to do so,” he said.
Smith offers some real world shooting practices to make you get that practice as perfect as possible for self-defense shooting.
• Wear your typical outfit when you go to the range. Don’t bring your load bearing vest, four extra magazines and other “Tacti-Cool” stuff. Put on your regular clothes you wear every day to train in. Then you will know where your weapon is and what is involved in weapon acquisition, target acquisition and shot placement. (Small insert ear plugs are ok—Not large over the head style).
• Don’t shoot from the low/high ready. If you get in the habit of already having your weapon out and at the low/high ready, you are missing one of the most critical steps in self-defense—Weapon Acquisition. You need to train your muscles to instinctively draw your weapon without looking at it while keeping your eyes down range on the threat.
• Get your heart beating. When the time comes and you need to draw your weapon to protect yourself, you can bet your heart will be racing and every beat will feel like it is in your throat. I like to do some jumping jacks, burpees or push ups to simply get my heart beat elevated to make me train more realistically.
(NOTE: Do these before you put on your gun).
Smith said since range time is less and less as we get older, it is paramount we spend our practice time as tactically as possible to train as perfect as we can, when we can.
“And don’t forget that fortune favors the prepared,” he said.
In the realm of concealed carry preparation comes at many levels. Whether it is picking the exact gun for the situation you find yourself in on a day to day basis or practicing in an educated, challenging fashion there is much to concealed carry.
It’s an option we have in Texas and one that those who are serious about self defense should never take for granted.
AFTER SEVERAL YEARS of hard work, production of CZ pistols is in full swing at their Kansas City headquarters. The CZ-USA P-10 Optics-Ready is available in the full-size F, compact C and subcompact S.
For sights, US-made P-10s feature a single tritium lamp in the front with a large orange surround and a serrated black rear.
The Optics-Ready version of the P-10 ships with a blank filler plate. Additional plates for both the Trijicon RMR and Leupold DeltaPoint Pro are currently developed, with other styles possible down the road. Also available are matching sights that allow the user to co-witness their optic dot with the irons.
One change that happens on both the US-made and Czech-made P-10s is the switch to a swappable magazine release. With a change in geometry, the goal was to eliminate the stiffness some customers experienced as the magazine release broke in, even though it became smooth after some use. This new reversible release just requires a few minutes to swap, allowing the P-10 to remain lefty-friendly.
These US-made P-10s retain all the features that have made them a resounding success — the crisp trigger, superior ergonomics and rugged reliability that set it apart from many in the striker-fired crowd.
— TF&G Staff Report