Armalaser Pros/Cons

Discussion in 'P-3AT' started by TX380, Jan 26, 2008.

  1. TX380

    TX380 Guest

    Jan 26, 2008
    Hey guys! I've read KTOG for months now, but just joined. Great site, lots of good info. I am considering an Armalaser for my P3AT, and all the reviews I've read here and elsewhere have been pretty positive. I was curious if anyone had considered purchasing one of these lasers and had decided against it? Or anyone who has one, do you have any complaints or issues with it? I did a search, but couldn't find any complaints or cons about them. Just want to do all my homework before I purchase and make sure I get the whole story. Thanks!
  2. lagerbrewer

    lagerbrewer New Member

    Dec 20, 2007
    I just got one and overall I like it a lot.  I'm confident that they used the smallest package to achieve what they wanted, but you definitely have to decide if adding that mass to the front of the gun is worth it for you to have a laser. I carred in a Mike's #2 before I got it and used to forget that the gun was even there. Now, I switched to a Mike's #3 with the armalaser and just that little bit more of mass makes this lump in my pocket that I am always aware of. Before it was like I had this sleek thing that conformed to my leg/pocket, but now I feel like I have an overstuffed wallet in my front pocket. It's crossed my mind to sell it, but I think the good it will do outweighs the bad. I still carry everyday, so it hasn't affected me that extremely. I also like the instant sighting. Also, no, I never plan to draw to intimidate, but it does have a huge mental impact that might help me avoid having to go all the way one day.

    As far as the product goes, it's indestructable.

  3. norton

    norton New Member

    Jan 25, 2008
    Greetings All,

    I just joined the the group also.

    The first thing I ordered was the new Crimson Trace. It's a little more
    ($6) but is more streamlined. Also, it has a switch to depress on the grip.
    May not be as good as the sensor of the Armalite. It seemed to me to be a better package. It hasn't arrived yet (ordered it yesterday) but I will follow with a range report. Heck, I just got the P3AT
    Thursday and haven't been to the range yet either.
    If anyone would like the info on where the laser was purchased let me know. The company has 4 in stock. I have no affliation with them and gain nothing.
    I'm looking forward to learning a lot from this group.
    Norton :cool:
  4. Bobo

    Bobo Well-Known Member Supporter

    Jun 13, 2005
  5. Gooseneck

    Gooseneck Guest

    Jan 22, 2008
    Not worth it in my opinion on a gun like this. Sure it looks cool and all but outside of 5-7 yards its almost pointless. I think lasers are good on 4-5 barreled guns with a dramatic increase in accuracy.
  6. norton

    norton New Member

    Jan 25, 2008
    I fired a 3At with a Armalaser and was impressed by a few things: sight acquisition, visibility, accuracy, distance and for training.

    First for my rather uh, mature eyes the dot is great. I don't look at the pistol, I watch the target. At least a second quicker. The bg see the red light, red means stop, take the hint. I get to hold the pistol close to my body more of a tripod effect, greater stability. A realistic distance for a self defense shot is generally meausred in feet not yards so every 1/1000 second will count. The laser tells you all about your control as you watch it move across the target. I would agree that you should know how to shot without it also. Though I did not chose the Armalaser for mine I do think it's oustanding. Further I was impressed by the distance which I think was about 30 yards and I could keep it on the paper.
    This is a low profile pocket gun that will be used for warm weather or back up.

    On a larger pistol, I have larger sights so they area easier to pick up.
    Just my 2 cents.

  7. msrdiver1

    msrdiver1 New Member

    Jan 20, 2008
    The 3AT is a get-off-me gun not for long distance shooting. But should I be forced to shoot past 15 feet in my urban area, I want a laser. I like the Armalaser for several reasons. ONE: I would not need to bring the pistol up and sight it in before pulling the trigger. The first shot, or two, into the BG can be done, as I've practiced, while bringing the gun up for a two handed well placed final shots. Time savings is about 1.0 to 1.5 seconds, would that matter to you? TWO: The 1.3 ounces under the front keeps the little bugger from jumping too much and I have better/faster/controlled groupings. Third: the "bulk" of the laser keeps it from being noticed, the printing, as a pistol. This is true in lightweight slacks and a windbreaker.

    I don't use a holster, as this is a pocket pistol, but I do have the belt clip to keep it from sliding too deep into the pants pocket where lint collects. If, the BG is close enough then, I'm shooting through the pocket of the jacket, my usual carry place in the cold months. Too much time spent , and maybe a very noticeable action, if drawing from a holster when I need it NOW to live. Also a hip holster under a winter jacket is VERY awkward to access! I sometimes carry the Armalaser-3AT in my back pocket so if an armed robber wants my wallet, my hand is low as I go for the gun; low like I'm getting the wallet. A high hand around my back might advertise a draw from a holster and get me shot first.

    The laser is tough, bright, and easy to sight in for beyond 15 feet. IMHO, You should be able to hit a torso 15 feet away with out a laser. I sight my laser for the longer shots.
  8. jfh

    jfh New Member

    Oct 15, 2007
    I've shaken down my P3AT enough now to have confidence in its basic use as a BUG--but I am not going to put a laser on it.  

    For various reasons, I prefer to carry a lightweight revolver (S&W M&P) with a CT-405 laser (boot grip) as my primary carry piece.  FWIW, that revolver is loaded with the Speer 38+P Short Barrel 135s (860-900 fps from a 2" barrel).  

    Once I got revolver shooting figured out, I couldn't believe how accurate a 2" snub can be, nor how much a laser can help aging eyes.  I have / am successfully using it to shoot groups as small as 3/8"h x 7/8" w at 15 yards--that is shooting HEADS UP from a benchrest.  In more typical combat scenarios--not using the laser to acquire the target, but using it to stay there--I can shoot a "quad five"--that's five shots at five yards, in five seconds with a five-inch group with that same ammo.   As soon as warm weather returns, I'll start learning to do that while moving....

    So, I consider laser an invaluable carry and training tool.  But, like others say above, I consider the P3AT my very close-in pistol, and I don't need / want a laser for that.  

    Jim H.
  9. lagerbrewer

    lagerbrewer New Member

    Dec 20, 2007
    Well, unfortunately I have a big CON and it is resulting in me having to sell it after only 1 week on the gun. I went to the range today to sight it in and upon firing 30 rounds, it was plainly obvious that my fat finger did not have enough space left in the trigger guard to allow the trigger to fully return. In fact, I can nearly dangle the gun from my fingertip with the pressure exherted by the trigger on my finger while pressed against the armalaser. I am very disappointed, although I understand the engineering.

    Shameless plug: My next stop is the trading post to get rid of this thing along with the brand new Mike's #3 I got to holster it. :( My anatomy seems to render the P3AT/Armalaser combo utterly useless. My loss, your gain...

    Hey, the guy that makes these things is just wonderful though. Incredible customer service and the Armalaser is a good product with boat loads of great reviews. I'm just ticked off because this happened. I really wanted this to work for me.

  10. wheelguy

    wheelguy New Member

    May 4, 2007
    I have both the ArmaLaser and CrimsonTrace for my P3AT. I would not carry a gun without a laser since it improves my accuracy so much at distances beyond 6 feet. Here's the lowdown...
    1. You have no control over when and how long the laser stays on target.
    2. It has failed to light up twice when I expected it to.
    3. Too much trigger space taken up by the detector.
    4. More difficult to install and remove to replace batteries.

    1. You have some control on when it turns on and off, because it uses a button instead of a sensor.
    2. The button is way too sensitive and will turn on when you don't want it to - like when it is in some holsters (including my holster) causing the battery to wear down to zero in just 1 day. I had this happen to me twice so far.
    3. Noticebly less space taken up by the attachment method. Much better than the ArmaLaser in this respect.
    4. Easy to install and remove to replace batteries.

    I would recommend waiting for CT to fix their button problem before buying. It has better potential than the AL, but to realize that potential - the button has to act like a real button instead of like a touch pad.
  11. TX380

    TX380 Guest

    Jan 26, 2008
    Thanks for all the responses. I'm still on the fence, but I think I'll hold off on the laser for now. My feeling is that anything that adds weight or size is just one more excuse I can use to not carry today. I'm bad enough about leaving it at home as it is - still trying to find the right holster and carry position so it won't print. A little easier to conceal now that cooler weather is here. You gotta love the way the 380 disappears under a sweatshirt. Just gotta find some jeans with looser front pockets so I can pocket carry in the summer.
  12. jfh

    jfh New Member

    Oct 15, 2007
    FWIW, I find the best place to carry my P3AT is in my offside hip pocket. (My wallet is in the strong side hip pocket.) It is not uncomfortable for me to sit on while driving (although a 600-mile drive would be problematic, I think), but when I'm behind the wheel I prefer a breast-pocket location--call it 'cross draw.'

    It fits, c/w a spare magazine, in a cheaper holster from Concealment Concepts, in all of my jeans hip pockets. Some are tighter than others, but I have found that with increasing age / sagging waistline, the pocket is loose enough for good access, if not a fast draw. And, I do have enough weakside skills that I can shoot it accurately in a close-up scenario. Should that scenario include a two-handed shot, the transfer to strong side is intuitive and fast.

    For other occasions--e.g., 'dress up'--a sports coat pocket (inside or outside) seems to be better. Duluth Trading is making a number of casual sports coats (and vests) with numerous pockets, some of which are good for the P3AT. And, dress pants (if not tailored too well) also offer front pocket carry.

    So, find the location(s) that feel(s) right for you, maximize your access to that location with the proper clothing--then practice, practice, practice.

    Jim H.
  13. TX380

    TX380 Guest

    Jan 26, 2008
    Hey Jim, thanks for the info. I was already planning to get a wallet holster and carry just as you said (planning to go to the gun show in two weeks and find me a holster!). I practiced today to make sure I can shoot weak hand without limp wristing and jamming the gun - worked fine. I found out today that I'm a better shot with the 380 than with my P-11 due to the difference in the triggers. I'll whine about that over on the P-11 page, though. The only issue with carrying/shooting weak hand is that I can't rack the slide with my right hand, so I will have to carry with one already in the pipe. I'd also like to be able to carry in the front pocket, since as others have pointed out, you can casually put your hand in your pocket and on your grip in "code orange" situations without raising suspicions. Just need to spend some time finding the right holster/jeans combination. Till then, I carry IWB at 12 or 5 o'clock and no one is the wiser.
  14. PshootR

    PshootR Banned

    Apr 1, 2005
    There are plenty of front pocket holsters that will fit the P3-AT, such as the DeSantis Nemesis and Uncle Mike's. Guns shows are not, IMHO, the best place to find holsters unless it's a really big show or you just happen to find the right thing at the right price. I did find a front pocket holster at a gun show that would have been perfect for my P3-AT except that with the ArmaLaser it was not an option. I now actually carry my PF-9 with ArmaLaser in my right front pocket, so the P3-AT would be "No problema."

  15. Checker4Tix

    Checker4Tix Well-Known Member

    Aug 6, 2007
    I have an ArmaLaser on my P3AT. So far I like it. I carry my pistol in a Desantis Nemesis and I can't tell that it prints any more than it did without the AL. I also do not notice any weight difference.

    I have no experience with the CT, but the only issue I've had with the AL is with one of the screws catching on my Nemesis. I have to be careful to flick the holster with my middle finger as I draw or else I risk pulling the holster out too. The instructions that came with the AL mentioned a set of flat head screws which I suppose would help me avoid the problem, but the were not included in my package. I probably need to call Rick.

    BTW, Rick offered me free shipping and a free second set of batteries for being a KTOG member. I had to call in the order, however, since the website wasn't set up for the discounts. It was nice to talk with Rick though.
  16. franco45

    franco45 Member

    Jul 5, 2010
    Thanks for all the feedback on the Armalaser. I am considering one for my new (to me) P32. When I went to the website I found a really beautiful unit for my S&W Sigma 9mm. Looks like a few more bucks to the gun gods. lol
  17. JR37

    JR37 Well-Known Member

    Jun 18, 2009
    Jonesboro, Arkansas
    I was having keeping my AL working on my P11. I finally figured out, and confirmed with AL, that my storing the P11 on a "Fast Holster" was causing my problems. Fast Holster is a magnetic bar that fastens to the back of a table, under your dash or any where you wish to hide a pistol. The magnets were causing problems with the electronics in the laser.

    Life is short be happy.
  18. BillK

    BillK New Member

    Jul 23, 2007
    IMHO the AramaLaser shines (pun intended) best as a training/practice tool. I can see both pros and cons for carry. I can imagine scenarios where it could maybe save your life and others where it might cost you your life.

    Take care...
  19. bergners

    bergners New Member

    Apr 30, 2009
    I had an armalaser on my P3At but have sold the pistol. The following are in the Trading Post here. All are like new. The laser worked very well but was mostly used to aggravate my cat. The cat loved to chase it and got pretty good at dodging bullets until that one night... ;)

    Armalaser - List - $119.00 with Desantis Nemisis discounted price $75.00
    Has brand new batteries. FREE SHIPPING

    Pocket holster from for laser - List - $60.00 discounted price $35.00 FREE SHIPPING

    Fobus holster - List 30.00 - not for laser discounted price $17.00 FREE SHIPPING

  20. Polygon

    Polygon Member

    May 28, 2010
    That's my thoughts exactly. I bought the P3 to conceal. Adding the laser just adds bulk and for me that's not worth it when the type of situation you're going to use this gun in it's not going to really matter anyhow.

    I would use a tactical laser for a home defense weapon, and I would not use the P3 for home defense.