Firearm: Springfield Hellcat OSP (MSRP: $599)
Springfield Armory’s Hellcat upped the ante for the micro-compact category by offering on-board capacity of 11+1 or 13+1 rounds of 9 mm, in a 3-inch-barreled platform with size and weight dimensions more akin to the popular 6- and 7-round polymer-frame single-stacks that have ruled the EDC market for nearly a decade. What’s more, the Hellcat is available in a red-dot-ready OSP configuration for only a $30 upcharge, essentially ensure the gun will stay relevant as the world of pistol-mounted optics continues to expand.
The gun we have today wears a Shield RMSc 4 MOA miniature red-dot, and one of the best things that Springfield did in designing the gun was ensuring the optics cut also allowed for co-witnessing of the excellent iron sights. The front sight is a luminescent yellow dot with a tritium insert for low-light visibility, and that is paired with a white outline U-Notch rear.
The other standout feature, besides its size and capacity, is the excellent ergonomic design. It’s a very small gun that still fills the hand, and thanks to its adaptive texturing, it’s easy to get firm purchase and control the gun during recoil, despite the limited real estate.
Holster: Wright Leather Works Cruiser RDR (MSRP: $115)
While most holster options for optics-equipped guns tend to be Kydex or some other polymer, I’m happy to report that leather options are starting to crop up as well. My friends Scott and Brandon Wright of Wright Leather Works recently launched a series of RDR or “Red Dot Ready” holsters, providing new options that are functional, comfortable and, frankly, beautiful.
The holster we have today is the Cruiser RDR in a Saddle Tan finish. It’s a single-clip design that offers some adjustability for ride height and cant, and the reinforced mouth has been deeply cut to accommodate the Hellcat with or without an optic.
Knife: Kershaw Knockout Folder (MSRP: $125)
Rounding out today’s lineup, we have a Kershaw Knockout knife which is a frequent flyer in our everyday carry collection. This knife features a 3.25-inch, drop-point blade with a black DLC finish, and a green anodized aluminum handle. Opening is assisted by bilateral thumbstuds or a rear opening tab, and Kershaw's patented SpeedSafe assisted opening mechanism.
One feature that we really appreciate is, despite the lightweight aluminum handle construction, the frame lock is actually a steel insert, which greatly improves the durability of that high-wear component. Overall, it’s a good size knife that still weighs less than 3.5 ounces, coming from a trusted American maker.