It seems in this world of compact micro pistols we have forgotten just how comfortable and concealable a single-stack option can really be. Savage has always put a premium on comfortable carry, and you can see that this has been true ever since 1907 when it released its first pocket pistol. After taking a break for oh, I dunno, 100 years, Savage is back in the game with a new micro semi-auto built for those seeking a quality carry setup for under $480.
At first glance you’ll likely say “it’s just another _____” and you’d be sorta right, as no one manufacturer owns the single-stack compact-polymer footprint. However, few are made with the quality and craftsmanship as Savage. Also, a lot of folks out there on the interwebs are playing down that this is a modular pistol, meaning that you can change frames, slides, and damn near anything you want to make this a completely different gun…all without involving a gun store of form 4473. So, let’s say you decide to pick up the Stance this year and Savage decides it wants to release a full-sized version in a few months; all you have to do is get those parts mailed to your door. Future-proofing is a big deal, folks. That, and firearms transfers aren’t free so consider those savings a green light to buy more ammo.
I took one of these to the range with a pre-pandemic amount of Hornady Critical Defense ammunition (five boxes) to get a feel for what our friends from the land of chowda and wicked-cold wintahs put together. Naturally, the first thing I noticed was the literal feel of the gun, specifically its texture. Savage went with a medium-grit and applied it completely around the magazine well and even let it drip out towards the muzzle, giving you a place to plant your thumbs. Checking the boxes were interchangeable backstraps, ambidextrous slide stop levers, and even a magazine release that can be depressed from either side. As for a mechanical thumb-safety, Savage offers the choice of with or without–leaving it up to the most important person to decide, you. Today, a gun without this suite of features is going to find itself playing catch-up to the hundreds that do, so needless to say they did their homework.
My range session started with accuracy testing, which was impressive for a defensive-minded pistol. From seven yards I produced five-shot groups as small as .84” and tallied up a five-group average of 1.59”. That’s good enough to shoot the crack pipe out of Hunter Biden’s mouth, leaving him completely unharmed!
With the mundane task of punching paper now behind me, I turned my attention to the club’s 8” plate racks. The Stance balanced very close to the palm, yielding minimal muzzle flip. This made it one of the flattest-shooting guns of this size that I have ever fired. The recoil was about 80% straight back, meaning that the sights settled right back on target or wherever your eyes were when the trigger reset. Running all six plates was no task at all and the only complaint that I had was that the gun didn’t have a bigger magazine. The Stance includes both a seven and eight-rounder, but if you want the 10-round jobbie you gotta order it separately.
I ended the range session with a little bit of holster work, practicing my draw from OWB, IWB, and even the dreaded testicle-piercing appendix. All of these positions worked exceptionally well and I had zero trouble clearing my cover garment. This speaks loudly to the fact that Savage rounded out nearly every corner of the stance and ensured that the controls were either recessed, fenced or both. I settled on the 8’oclock position (I’m a lefty), as it tucked away quite nicely there. I finished my test by teaching two separate students both introductory and advanced handgun techniques. Neither knew the gun was pressed against my back, even as I demonstrated kneeling behind cover and shooting around it. I wore the gun home that day, impressed with not only how well it functioned, but how easy it was to wear while going about my day-to-day business. To me, that is the true test of a CCW pistol. After all, what good is a gun that you left in the safe because it’s irritating to wear?
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