Choosing Handguns for Concealed Carry & Home Defense

We often hear the question “which handgun should I purchase for concealed carry and/or home defense?” As we always make the recommendation of choosing a modern, striker-fired handgun in 9x19mm caliber (without any additional external safety switches!), this narrows down the list considerably; finally, we’ll focus on handguns that have proven track records of reliability, in two size classes, compact and subcompact:

Compact (large enough for home defense, small enough for some to conceal carry; from smallest to largest)

Glock 19 [Gen3 or Gen5] (15-round capacity)

Smith & Wesson M&P Compact 9mm (15-round capacity)

CZ P10C (15-round capacity)

Subcompact (smallest/lightest for conceal carry; from smallest to largest)

Sig Sauer P365 (10-round capacity)

Glock 43 (6-round capacity)

Smith & Wesson M&P Shield 9mm (7/8-round capacity)

Glock 26 (10-round capacity)

CZ P10S (12-round capacity)

If you’re in the Houston Metro area, be sure to take the official USCCA Concealed Carry and Home Defense Fundamentals Class to establish and work on your essential skills for proper handgun shooting that gets you on target, including the knowledge and mindset to prepare the armed defender for success.

Buying Your First AR15, 2020/2021 Edition

2020 may have begun normally, but we’ve all seen the panic-buying and empty store shelves brought on by COVID and national unrest. Add to that mixture an election year, and we have a whole new ballgame when it comes to buying your AR15, where often, simply finding one in stock has become the objective. We cannot allow this panic and scarcity to overwhelm our senses and make a foolish purchase; instead, we will stick to a simple set of rules to ensure a quality buy.

On barrel length and twist rate: for our first AR15 rifle, choose one with a 16” barrel (this is the minimum barrel length without special legal considerations) with a 1:7” twist rate (for proper stabilization with a wide variety of .223/5.56 caliber ammunition).

The most important criteria to consider on any gun is reliability! The quality of the parts and proper assembly of the rifle you’ve bought will determine whether it continues to run without malfunctioning or breaking. What we’re looking for is a track record of consistent standards and quality control. To that end, there are a number of companies and price ranges that coincide to provide AR15 models worthy of consideration:

$700-$1,000 (BEST VALUE for the budget-focused):

– Palmetto State Armory AR15’s

– Stag Arms Stag-15 models

$1,200-$1,800 (the STANDARD that WE RECOMMEND):

– Sons of Liberty GunWorks M4-EXO2 or M4-76 models

– Bravo Company USA (any model in this price range)


$1,500-$3,000 (extremely high quality):

– Radian Weapons (any “Model 1” models)

– Knight’s Armament (any “SR-15” models)

– LMT Defense (any “SPM,” “Defender,” or “MARS-L” models)

Training is the key to being able to effectively utilize any firearm, especially an AR15. Wherever you are, team up with an instructor to understand the basics of operating your AR15 as a whole integrated unit so that you will be prepared for success. Here in Houston, Texas, Davies Defense offers a 2-hour on-the-range AR15 Basics Course with ammunition included so you can get started right; email

Training live in Houston, TX!

Training and personal consulting for your mindset of awareness and defense

Welcome! Whether you’re a prospective new gun owner, need to reinforce your skills, or want to build your defensive strategy from the ground up, Davies Defense will help you achieve a higher standard of being a responsible and prepared defender.

What can you expect from our courses?

  • Fundamentals of shooting, including grip, stance, and control
  • Philosophy of pistol carry and defensive use of firearms
  • Strategies to keep from running afoul of the law
  • Firearms and Gear – what works, and guidelines for personal selection

See upcoming class dates:

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