Too Heavy For a Carry Gun?

I gotta say, one thing I see a lot in reviews and comments, “It’s heavy/too heavy for a carry gun.” I always think, ‘what the hell are you talking about?’

This Smith weighs 38 oz. Too heavy?

I made a holster for my S&W M1917 subby yesterday and test-wore it last night and all day today. I kept forgetting it was there. At 38 oz. loaded weight this is definitely not a light-weight gun. Admittedly I am a big person, but I’m also old and broken.

My main EDC is a CZ P-01 Omega; certainly no heavyweight. Fully loaded it weighs about 32 oz., which most people think is OK. Another favorite carry gun- a steel-frame 9mm 1911 with a 3-1/2″ barrel- weighs 36 oz. loaded, which is, I am told, too heavy. I carry both guns (one at a time) in Kydex IWB holsters and seriously, I can’t tell that one is two ounces heavier than the other. Mind you the CZ holds 50% more ammunition, so perhaps the 1911 is heavy for what it delivers? That argument actually makes some sense.

2 oz. loaded weight difference- yet one is ‘too heavy.’

When I started carrying a gun back when dinosaurs roamed the earth most carry guns were steel. A lot of people carried full size 1911s. That was just what was around for the most part, and we learned to adapt. A good quality gun-belt was essential, and a good holster helped a lot. I was a large person (though significantly more svelte in those days,) but even then persons much smaller than I carried steel-frame guns and thought little of it. It’s natural for someone like me to hear these guns are ‘too heavy’ and think, “Jeez, kids these days…”

Is it just a matter of what one is used to? If I grew up in The Glock Age would I think guns like my 1911 and other all-steel guns are too heavy? Probably. Also with all of the lightweight polymer options out there, many of them excellent guns, why wouldn’t one carry something lightweight if it can do the job? Sure, you can carry a heavier gun, but it’s the 21st Century and you don’t have to. Technology moves on, and sometimes this results in a better mousetrap. I’ve often said if due to some catastrophic error of judgement I wound up back on duty I’d have a Glock 17 (preferably with an optic) on my hip. In this day and age it’s a better tool for the job.

Guns like the Sig P365 are small, lightweight, and offered in a potent cartridge with good capacity for their size. I mean, why wouldn’t you?

And it’s certainly not that I don’t appreciate a light-weight gun; I adore my Airweight Chief’s Special because at need I can drop it in a pocket and go if I have to. There are more modern options that would serve as well or better, and I freely acknowledge this. I think mighty well of my friend Lia’s P365, and if budget allowed I might well pick one up and trick it out like hers.

Sure, I’m old, out of touch etc. Kinda’ stupid too. I like and I’m comfortable with my Fudd guns and have no doubt they would serve me well at need. But this is the golden age of carry guns. We have options to cover the many needs and preferences of different people and there’s no real reason to pack the extra weight if you don’t have to. I just do because I’m old and weird.

Still, even bearing that in mind it has to be said…


Stay safe and take care,

Michael Tinker Pearce, 17 December 2022

1 thought on “Too Heavy For a Carry Gun?

  1. Carl

    When I switch from a LCR to a steel Taurus 856, the 856 feels really heavy. For about half an hour.
    Ditto when the 856 is switched out with a 1911. The time it takes for my feeble brain to adapt to a bigger gun is not much longer than it took to write this note.

    Oh, by the way, I’m old and broken as well . . .


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