These three new guns are what I carry most of the time now. I call them "Top Shelf" guns because I literally keep them on the top shelf of my safe for easy access. I believe these three are the best examples of each of the three most common firing platforms (DA/SA, Striker, and SAO). After modifying and upgrading all of my other carry guns, I came to the conclusion that I really just wanted to have a set of guns that have a minimum amount of modifications so that their reliability is as high as it can possibly be, while being outfitted with high quality accessories to maximize their performance and functionality. All three of these new guns have Trijicon RM06 optics, tritium night sights with my DIY Hi-Viz front sight modification, and Olight PL-Pro weapon mounted lights. They all share the same custom kydex holster that I made that indexes on the light rather than the gun.
The CZ P-07 is my all-time favorite carry gun. If I had to choose only one gun to do everything, the P-07 would be the gun I would pick. Out of the box, the double action trigger pull is a little heavy, but that can be easily and inexpensively improved by purchasing a self defense spring kit and a few other small items from Cajun Gun Works (around $35 total) to lighten the trigger pull and increase reliability. There is not an optics ready verison of the P-07, so I sent the slide to JagerWerks to have it milled for an optic. The one thing that I don't like about the CZ P-07 is the lack of usable texture on the frame, so I textured the frame on this one myself to give it a better feel without being too aggressive for concealed carry. In my opinion, the double action first trigger pull makes this the safest option for defensive use and concealed carry, especially when carried in the appendix position as I do every day of the week.
Glock 19 MOS Gen5
There is no denying the Glock 19's reliability track record and the availability for aftermarket parts to improve and customize the gun, but if you go too crazy with aftermarket parts then you can possibly reduce it's potential reliability. The Gen 5 has a really good trigger out of the box, so the only thing I've done to it is install a 3.5# connector and a medium striker spring from Lone Wolf (around $15 total). The factory texture on the Gen 4 and Gen 5 is more than adequate for a defensive gun, but I always re-contour the bottom of the trigger guard on all my Glocks to make it more comfortable on my knuckle, and I enlarge the interior of the trigger guard slightly for safer use with gloves. I also modify the medium beavertail backstrap by cutting off the bottom half to give the gun a more natural point of aim with the re-contoured trigger guard, so the grip angle feels similar to a CZ or a 1911. I went with the MOS version for simplicity which also comes with front serrations on the slide as a bonus. I used the CHPWS V3 mounting plate for the RMR instead of the OEM MOS mounting plate because it allows the optic to sit slightly lower on the slide and it has much better thread engagement on the mounting screws. As with all of my Glock handguns, I've also installed a Striker Control Device from Tau Development Group as an added measure of safety when carrying and holstering the gun in the appendix position.
STI Staccato C2 2011
This gun is brand new for 2020. I started out with and have always loved 1911s, but I've never been comfortable carrying one for defensive purposes on a regular basis because of their low capacity. I've looked at various high capacity compact 2011s in the past, but I was never completely happy with their aesthetics or lack of features, especially when paying more than $1500 for one. When STI unofficially announced the new Staccato C2 in December 2019, I loved everything about it and sold all of my compact 1911s to fund the purchase. The Staccato C2 is offered in a standard version for $2000 and an optics ready version ("DUO") for $2500. I was originally going to buy the DUO version and just mount an RMR on it and be done, but I ended up getting the standard version and sent the slide to Vulcan Machine Werks to have it milled for an RMR using Trijicon's 1911/2011 specific mounting plate that Vulcan includes with their milling package for $400. After doing a little research, I realized that the Trijicon mounting plate allows the RMR to sit slightly lower on the slide than the DUO mounting plate, and the Trijicon plate also comes with co-witnessing front and rear tritium night sights (I prefer tritium night sights on all my carry guns). With the DUO version of the C2, you have to purchase the RMR specific mounting plate separately (an extra $140), and it only comes with a black rear sight and a fiber optic front sight, so I would've had to special order tritium night sights (an extra $110). Having the standard version slide milled for the Trijicon plate made more sense to me and it ended up saving me over $300 vs buying the DUO version and having to buy all the extra parts.
For more photos and specs on all of my guns, visit my website here: