A Rifle for Concealed Carry? Three Practical Choices
Recent events both at home and abroad have many Americans rethinking their everyday carry handgun choices. There’s an excellent chance that you might be one of the thousands of prepared citizens trading in their pocket pistol for something a bit larger, like a gun in the size class of a Glock 19 or a CZ P-07 duty.
But what about those tragic incidents where no matter how big your pistol is, it’s simply just not going to be enough? How can you best prepare to deal with multiple aggressive adversaries, who might be wearing body armor while armed with AK-47s?
There’s no question, the best way to deal with these challenging problems is the trained application of a rifle. And the only type of rifle that’s going to help is the one that you’ve got with you at the moment of truth.
A Word on Our Gun Choices (READ THIS)
Many states have laws allowing the carry of rifles, both openly and concealed. It’s up to you to know what you are or are not allowed to do, and to comply with all applicable laws, just like you do when carrying a concealed handgun.
Let’s be clear, the only type of long gun that’s easily concealable on a regular basis is going to be a Short Barreled Rifle (SBR). While the process for acquiring rifles with sub 16-inch barrels can be confusing, it’s really not that terrible to go through.
Short barreled rifles have never been more popular, and are becoming an extremely common sight on the firing line. Obtaining one is easy enough. Click here to learn how.
Many times, it’s simplest to just convert a rifle-caliber pistol to an SBR. None of the choices below ship in rifle format; it’s going to be up to you to perform your due diligence and get everything squared away with your SBR stamp before adding a stock.
With that out of the way, you’ll notice that there are no pistol-caliber weapons listed below. There’s a good reason for that. If you’re going to the trouble to carry a carbine-sized defensive arm, you want something with some punch behind it.
Top Concealed Carry Rifles
Yes, it’s big. Yes, it’s heavy. And yes, it gives you 20 rounds of full-power 7.62×51 in a compact package. If anything, the muzzle blast and noise will send along a significant “leave me alone” message.
Perhaps best of all, it’s easy enough to attach a (slightly modified) collapsible HK91/G3 stock to it after you get your SBR paperwork completed. And, did we mention spare mags are cheaper than a fast-food restaurant’s #1 menu item?
The shorter you make your rifle’s barrel, the more your ballistic performance suffers. This is a simple fact of physics, but this reduced performance is often worth the tradeoff to get a compact overall length. However, going with a caliber that’s efficiently optimized for short barrels, like the .300 AAC Blackout, will give you the best of both worlds.
Since it’s an AR-15 to its very core, the ARP300K couldn’t be easier to add a stock to once the SBR process is complete. Just pick your favorite, or add a stabilizing arm brace to the already installed, custom-designed pistol buffer tube and forgo the SBR process entirely.
While it’s a relatively complex process to attach a folding stock in order to make it a legal SBR, the PAP M92 is one of our favorite choices for converting and carrying. Superb reliability, decent accuracy and a compact profile give this AK-esque gun plenty of attributes that lend themselves well to backpack duty.
Rifles can get heavy very quickly during a long day, but the PAP weighs in at a scant 5.69 pounds. It also takes all common AK magazines, including the immensely popular Magpul PMAG. For a 7.62×39 firearm in its class, it’s pretty much impossible to beat.
You’ll Also Need a Bag
Slipping a PAP M92 under a coat during your Wal-Mart run is nota recommended practice, but carrying one in a purpose-built piece of gear like the Bulldog Cases MSR Sling Pack is a very viable option.
Think outside the box and get creative with your method of carry. A baseball bat bag or tennis racket case won’t get a second glance at local sporting events, yet are completely capable of legally concealing your SBR.
Is this Even Practical?
Naturally, all of this raises the question, is carrying a concealed rifle on your person really practical? Honestly, the answer is probably “no” in most cases. Packing a rifle around while keeping it concealed isn’t easy or convenient, but it is possible. It’s up to you to judge your perceived threat levels and plan accordingly.
Even if it’s not practical or even legal in your circumstances, it’s a fun gear exercise to think about, ponder and question. Because as gun people, that’s just what we do.