Firearm: Mossberg MC2c (MSRP: $490)
Mossberg followed up its popular MC1sc handgun with a slightly larger, more capacious model, the MC2c. With an overall size smaller than, well, other mid-size pistols of Austrian descent, the MC2c has impressive capacity, with 13 rounds available in the flush-fit magazine and an extended version that holds 15 rounds also included. The MC2c has a 3.9-inch barrel, overall length of 7.1 inches, a weight of 21 ounces unloaded and offers three-white-dot sights.
The polymer-frame, striker fired design is pretty standard, but the flat-face, bladed-safety trigger is worth a mention. Most triggers in this category of firearm are usually described with caveats: “it’s a decent trigger for a gun this size” or “a good trigger compared to [brand X].” In the case of the MC2c, though? It’s just a good trigger. There’s little take-up, and the trigger breaks cleanly somewhere between 5 and 6 pounds. While it’s certainly not a tuned competition trigger or a single-action 1911, it’s really, really good for a compact, striker-fired trigger.
Another item of note in the MC2c, and this is a carryover from the MC1sc, is the slight palmswell grip and texturing. It’s one of those things that doesn’t really show well in an image, but even when holding the gun, it’s not a “wow” moment. In fact, you tend not to notice the design much at all - until you’ve shot the gun a bunch, and realize that your hands actually feel pretty good. It’s something that we noticed at the product launch at Gunsite Academy - after an entire day of shooting this compact handgun, there were no blisters, abrasions or sore spots to be found. Not only is the MC2c easy to shoot, it’s comfortable, too - which is great motivation to get to the range to practice.
Holster: DeSantis Pegasus Slim-Tuk Ambidextrous (MSRP: $40.99)
When it comes to carrying the MC2c, here’s one of the downsides to not being, well, a certain Austrian pistol. There just aren’t as many holster fits for the Mossberg as there are other pistols of a similar size. DeSantis Holsters, though, has partnered with Mossberg since the first MC1sc pistol to provide kydex and leather options in which to carry either of Mossberg’s pistol offerings.
The Pegasus Slim-Tuk we have today offers a super light, ambidextrous holster with a single, sturdy belt clip that can be adjusted for appendix carry or canted slightly for traditional inside-the-waistband carry. Fully reversible, all you need to do is swap the anchor point and clip to change the “handedness” of the holster (it comes right-handed, so you southpaws will need to flip it). It is adjustable for retention, as well.
Accessory: Mission First Tactical Pepper Spray (MSRP: $12.95)
One of the many tools in the self-defense toolbox, pepper spray offers another, less-lethal option. Mission First Tactical’s OC Pepper Spray has a 10-foot effective radius, offers enough volume for 35 “sprays” and includes an ultraviolet dye for identification under a black light. This particular canister is of the twist-top variety, where the deployment button needs to be rotated into position to press down and release the OC spray. The other variety is the flip-top, where you obviously flip a protective cover up to depress the activation switch. Each method has its advantages and disadvantages, and is a matter of personal preference.
Carrying a less-than-lethal option such as pepper spray gives another option for dealing with potential threats—particularly where lethal force might not yet be justified. It can also provide a self-defense option where a firearm may not be allowed. As always, check with your state and local laws, and ideally take a course or two in the care and handling of OC sprays. Know the limitations of the tool you’re using, as well as the most-effective methods to get those tools in action when needed.