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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I broke in a new Kahr MK9 this weekend. I was inspired by a recent Pocket Pistol thread here that got me to thinking it might be worthwhile to try one out. This caused me to violate my self-imposed moratorium on buying pistols at a gun show this weekend and, voila, I'm a new Kahr owner.

Anyway, Sunday afternoon I followed Kahr's break-in recommendation, drove to Top Gun and fired off 200 rounds of 115 UMC. Boy, was I pleasantly surprised. Tight and small as it is -- 5 inches long, 4 inches tall, less than one inch thick -- it didn't choke one time. Not even when I deliberately limp-wristed it. Perceived recoil was neglible, so I imagine +p ammo would be easy to handle.

Still, as I shot it, I couldn't help but compare it to the trusty J-frame that usually resides in my pocket when I feel the need to carry. I honestly can't say which one I prefer at this point. Maybe it's a toss-up.

Still, here are some contrasts that appeared to me after that first range session:

Concealability: the Kahr is smaller than the S&W. But in some clothing the pistol sheathed in an Uncle Mike's pocket holster prints more obviously than the revolver because the latter has a more irregular shape.

Portability: My pistol is the all-steel, 22-ounce model. It weighs about the same as my S&W.

Craftsmanship: Each gun is fine example of it's kind. The Kahr feels like a pre-Lexus Mercedes used to feel. My M 042 has a lustrous and deep blue finish hard to find on any new gun today. Guess I prefer the S&W, but no doubt the Kahr is a quality piece.

Accuracy: I'm considerably more accurate -- and more experienced -- with the J-Frame. But the Kahr shows obvious potential. If I were inexperienced with each gun, I'd probably give the nod here to the Kahr because it handles recoil better, stings less and would possibly be easier to get the hang of.

Firepower: 7 rounds versus 5, Kahr wins. Also the 9 mm may offer better terminal performance in a small package like this. Some comparisons I've read show scant difference in velocity between 3-inch 9 mm and longer-barreled guns. Moreover, Kahr's polygonal rifleing and very tight chambers also supposedly help keep the speed up. Velocity of .38 special apparently drops off more steeply, although acceptable ammo is available. My particular J-frame shouldn't use +p ammo, either. Reloads are faster with the pistol too.

Overall shootability: This is kind of a catch-all category. With practice, the Kahr might win it. It's more comfortable to shoot, handles recoil better and is easier for me to shoot single-handed. The S&W's DAO trigger mechanism resets faster than the Kahr's, though. Plus, the Kahr has a relatively short length of pull that required me to unnaturally cock my trigger finger in order to keep my finger tip where it belongs. Several times recoil caused that finger to slip to the left so the trigger rested behind the first knuckle. This caused me to pull the second shot, an error a long-fingered shooter could probably prevent with some practice.

So that's it. I like the new little gun a lot, and I might even recommend it over a J-frame for someone who was just starting to shoot small-guns.

For me, though, the clear advantage of the pistol is in the extra firepower. Only time will tell if I learn to shoot the Kahr well-enough to decide that its extra firepower is sufficient reason to relegate my M 042 to the safe.

And all of this, of course, is the just opinion of one man whose wife occasionally reminds him that he's wrong about more things than he cares to admit.

Max
 

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I've had the same sort of epiphany towards my newly acquired Kahr K-9 since taking it out to the range the first time!
 

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Thanks for the great review!

For someone like myself who is still considering which "pocket" pistol to get and pack. This definitely helps lean the way even more towards the Kahr.

-Rob
 

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Hello, maxer51tx, and thanks for your post. It is precisely these sorts of posts that I think other members of the site might find of interest and use.

Best.
 
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks, Stephen.

I put another 100 rounds of UMC through it this p.m. Still no failures. I am, however, wearing a Band-Aid to cover a blister the gun wore on my right thumb.

I've read that some models of Kahr Pistols tend to fly the first round. So far mine hasn't exhibited that tendency.

Max
 

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I concur with maxer51tx's assessment and carry the MK9 daily. The trigger, while smooth and light, does take a little bit of time to grow accustomed to. Also (although it doesn't matter to me because I only shoot factory loads) if you are a handloader, the MK9 puts a nasty dent in the brass during extraction (at least my example does)
 
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