PCC Rifles ? Experienced owner's / shooter's impressions?

I think the PCC hits an interesting niche for home defense. They offer a low recoiling gun that is easier to shoot than a handgun (thanks long sight radius!). They can be quite reliable and inexpensive. They might be ideal for people who live in apartment, buildings, or tightly spaced neighborhoods. With expanding bullets they may be less likely to smash though all the things into neighbors abodes. 9mm is currently often cheaper than 5.56, or .223. Ruger and Henry’s PCCs also have the benefit of not looking over much like military style weapons. This is especially true of the Henry Homesteader. This may appeal to new shooters, or shooters who prefer different aesthetics etc and not like military looking weapons. Also, and not insignificantly, they are lots of fun at the range.

The drawbacks are not insignificant. Most civilian 9mm ammo isn’t really designed for long barreled application. Some may gain too much speed from the longer barrel and expand too early. The benefits of cheaper ammo may evaporate if one feeds it more expensive +p or +p+ ammo. So if you are going to run one as a home defense/self-defense platform, some significant ammo testing might be in order. Luckily there are several people who have done a lot of this for you on the old YouTube. Lucky Gunner has a great presentation. Even out of a rifle length barrel, a pistol caliber cartridge is still a pistol caliber cartridge and won’t be as effective as a true rifle cartridge. But for self defense/home defense purposes the accuracy gain probably negates this trade off.

That is my list of pros and cons.


Do note that expanding handgun ammo (like 9mm JHP) doesn’t expand in things like sheet rock, drywall, plywood, etc. As in, they don’t expand when they miss the person/threat and thus penetrate pretty similarly to 5.56 (both of which limit penetration quite well when hitting a person)


exactly, JHP only open from hydraulic pressure of noncompressible fluid (flesh) filling the cavity and forcing it to expand. Wood and sheetrock doesn’t do that. there have been quite a few ammunition studies showing that the loss of velocity through walls/clothing/cars is enough to slow a JHP to the point it won’t expand. If the cavity becomes packed with foreign material, like drywall or fabric fibers, it also has a significantly lower chance of expanding. That has long been an argument against the old style of bare ballistic gel blocks being used to demonstrate expansion. It doesn’t take into account having to pass through solid object before it reaches tissue. modern FBI testing requires them to be fired through all kinds of materials before the blocks. Car doors, heavy winter coats, drywall, plywood, they all have different effects on JHP rounds. thick plywood has a nasty habbit of collapsing the hollowpoint to the point they may as well be FMJs.

What Barriers Do To Ammunition - Testing Data (ammunitiontogo.com)


Thanks USCCA Community members for the great overview of the PCC applications. It helped me to focus on the barrel length and ammo performance aspects of these weapons. They may not be useful in my home defense scenario. If I need to accurately cover distances longer than 7 yards, I would probably best served with a rifle with a scope or reflex sights. - KAL47


Look into an AR pistol. Length is very manageable and all calibers available. With the current injunction against the brace ban, might be an option.

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I have a SIG Sauer MPX setup for 9mm. I have put a Suppressor on it a run it as a PCC. After the stink over arm braces I converted it to a SBR using a folding stock. I mounted the Sig Romeo + Juliet on it along with a surefire light on a pressure switch. It is my Home Defense Weapon.

With subsonic defense loads, I no longer worry about waking up the entire block in the middle of the night.

I have taken over 100 hours of training at SIG Sauer Academy using it and other SIG weapons. The MPX is an extension of my right arm.

I would not use anything else to protect my home and my loved ones.

It is perfectly balanced; easy to maneuver with; super accurate; and almost whisper quiet. IMHO it is the perfect home defense weapon. It is not too powerful that it will go through all the walls and down the street. It is accurate enough to take that difficult shot if it needs to be taken. I am much more confident with it than any of my handguns and can save my Rifle for that long shot when that need arises.

Like any tool in your kit, it is only as good as the user. So train, train, train.

It is the best way to go.


FWIW, there is very little difference in wall penetration/danger on the other side between 9mm, 5.56, and 12 gauge buckshot (the big three self defense choices). Which is to say I wouldn’t pick it based on that, especially since buckshot and 5.56 are significantly better at stopping an attacker ASAP (especially if wearing armour)

BUT it being an extension of your right arm and being much more confident with it, that is the reason to select it for home defense. IMO.

That’s the bottom line I am getting from your post. Pick something reasonable, train with it, be comfortable and confident with it. Stick with it.

This is the way.

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It is hard to miss with a Ruger PC9 in home defense situations. Great option!


I have a SIG Sauer MPX gen 2 (Multi-caliber). I have am Osprey .45 suppressor mounted along with a SIG Romeo 5 red dot and just recently applied for a tax stamp as an SBR. I attached the SIG Folding Stock on the rear.

I spent 5 weeks (May - June 2023) at SIG Sauer Academy learning how to use it and my AR-15.

As a PPC, the MPX is a perfect platform. Much better than my MP5. Yh accuracy, th balance and the incredible trigger all combined to make the low light class, and the kill house an incredible experience.

I trained with the MP5 and used it quite a bit in the '90’s. But If I had the MPX I know it would have been a much greater learning experience. Just the grouping (consistent 2" groups while running, or using night vision, low light, or even bright noon day sun made the experience that much better than running the MP5 through the course.

MPX - 9mm all the way, every day.

It has a special place in my heart and by the side of my bed.

No other choice (unless they deliver on their promise for a 10mm conversion).

Dr. T.

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