I want to preface this as a Tarheel, your own locale May be different….
Here in my AO, carrying a loaded carbine in a car is not legal (edited to add, under some circumstances, see end of post). Yes dear deer hunter, even you who transports your thuty thuty from home to field loaded up for Bambi is subject to run afoul of Johnny Law. While there are some among us who don’t give a rat’s tail about that fact, it remains a possibility that carrying a fighting carbine that is ready to rock in your veh is possibly going to catch you a case.
Why would you want to have a rifle cartridge weapon in your car you may be asking….”because handguns are for fighting your way back to your rifle, the one you shouldn’t have put down in the first place” -Clint Smith
In today’s climate, a carbine in your car just makes sense. Stored in a nondescript bag like a softball bat bag or tennis bag in your trunk or behind your pickup seat, it brings a level of capability not available in handguns.
We can argue caliber, but that isn’t what this is about and since I’m the blogger here I’m going to concentrate on 5.56 because I like cross platform compatibility from weapon to weapon. I do have a 6.5 Creedmoor SR25 project going on but that is for another day. To quote John Mosby “I never shot a bad guy with a 5.56 who got up”.
With the advent of AR pistol braces and the salad days we find ourselves in, there is almost no excuse for not having this capability in your veh or home. Yes, you give up some velocity, yes M193 needs enough velocity to fragment to perform its best, but the type of weapon I am talking about here is for close engagement of multiple targets with plenty of oomph to do the job.
It is well known that I am a PSA fanboi, Palmetto State Armory’s owner has stated that his goal is to put as many ARs into as many hands as possible while making it all themselves for a profit yes, but at prices anyone can afford. Nitride 10.5 pistol kits are still $279, only up $20 since I built my 3 but an awesome bargain. These kits with a stripped lower and a Magpul rear sight get you a basic weapon for under $350. I added things to all of mine I find necessary on any fighting carbine….er….AR pistol but these things are entirely subjective.
They have great barrels in 1/7 twist, Carpenter 158 bolts, forged receivers and M4 cut ramps. They work people, and while your BCM that cost 4 times as much may be marginally better, it ain’t 4 times better.
The point is that the capability far exceeds your handgun in a situation which may arise in today’s chaotic circumstances. An AR pistol is 100% legal to have in your car, loaded and ready to rock and is 100% legal to conceal with your CCW permit (again, check the laws in your area) I am not going to get into trench coats and walking the streets with one, but it is legally a pistol. Period.
On capability, with a 10.5” AR shooting real M193 you can expect around 2650fps. What does this get you? Devastating performance close up where it matters, and if zeroed at 43 yards for max point blank range with a 4” target size, you are back on zero at 194 yards and on target to 223 yards. Simply put, hold on your target dead on from muzzle to 223 yards and hit inside 4”…..Try that with your 9mm or 45.
Will it frag at 223 yards, nope. Does it matter? Nope. I guarantee that wicked pill will make any shooter have the worst day of their life and stop advancing forthwith. It’s real usefulness however is where most engagements are going to happen, under 50 feet. Even after SHTF, you face much more possibility of up close encounters than sniping across the fields of battle.
This does not replace your 16” carbine with 1-4x optic for every use, but as I have laid out it gets you something the carbine cannot, carrying it like any other handgun in your veh or even under a jacket.
I know I’m going to get asked so:
Each of my 3 are identical except furniture color. They all have a PWS CQB comp which sends blast away from the shooter, I can shoot them without ear pro with no ringing. They all have Sig Romeo 5 red dot sights because they are tough and still on sale for $120 (see video here https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=Fuq_N129SAI
They all have slings, they have CMC 4.5lb flat triggers because I love them and they all have Magpul rear sights, Magpul Slim hand guards and Streamlight ProTac XL white lights.
You don’t have to have any of that. The basic kit with a rear sight and stripped lower is all you need. https://palmettostatearmory.com/psa-10-5-5-56-nato-1-7-nit-classic-shockwave-pistol-kit-black-5165449175.html
Get nitride for durability and corrosion resistance, not the similar phosphate kits. Get a stripped lower locally or order from PSA or whoever floats your boat. The lower is the firearm by law and has to go to a dealer where you go and do the paperwork to pick it up. The kit ships to your house. Putting them together is easy and tons of info and video is available.
Time is short folks, get the tools you need and practice with them until you can run them well. Remember, pistols for fun, rifles for real.
Edited to show that :
Concealed handgun permits only apply to handguns only, not long guns or any other weapon…..and that you can carry a loaded long gun in your car if: it is not easily accessible AND concealed at the same time. Concealed it at the discretion of the officer and easily accessible can be as well. A locked trunk and you’d probably be OK, rear portion of an SUV, especially with passengers in the back seat, probably not going to go well. In full view in the passenger seat you’d probably be OK but sort of defeats being discreet.