In Oct 2018 I wrote about building up the ideal trunk gun. I used a Daniel Defense AR pistol as the host weapon, and you can read about that in part one here. That pistol was a loaner from Daniel Defense, and when it was time to send it back I was forced to think about what I really needed in a trunk gun.
The part 1 article was an over the top example of a setup that would do just about anything. I quickly came to the conclusion that I didn’t really like the idea of a multi thousand dollar pistol and a couple thousand dollar night vision goggle setup riding in my trunk at all times. In a potential critical incident I doubt my abilities to don the NVG’s and be ready in the required time.
These days of social media it’s easy to get caught up in keeping up with the Jones’ and thinking you need the best battle tested gear to live your life. I quickly realized that I live a pretty mundane life and can get by with much less than the Jones’.
What I ended up coming across was Palmetto State Armory. PSA has been around for awhile now and I’m pretty sure most people have had one of their AR’s at some point. I’ve personally have probably 20 different setups over the years and never had any major issues. I’ve never had one fail to go bang when needed and the price has always been right. I asked PSA to send me one of their 10.5″ built pistols for review.
PSA’s pistol inventory changes all the time so you can see what they currently have in a fully assembled pistol here. If you are more of a do it yourself kinda person you can see all their pistol kits here. You would then just need to add one of their stripped lowers to finish it out. See the stripped lowers here.
Let’s take a picture tour of how I’ve outfitted this particular pistol for trunk gun use.
The pistol I chose shipped with the fantastic SB Tactical SBA3 pistol brace. It adjusts to fit your needs and is super comfortable to shoot. I appreciate the dual integrated QD sockets for sling mounts.
The pistol shipped with a fully competent Magpul pistol grip, but I run BCM grips on all my other platforms so I figured a simple grip swap was in order. I chose the model with the integrated rear beavertail and front lip to transition into the trigger guard.
The pistol came with an adequate coated trigger, but when I got this one I had just received a PWS pistol as well, and I upgraded the PWS to a JP trigger so I decided to take the trigger that comes in the PWS and put it in the PSA pistol. I believe PWS uses an ALG trigger.
I also added the Magpul BAD lever, which allows you to lock back or release the bolt from your shooting hand. Some people hate these, but I’ve not had any issues with them.
I’m running a Holosun 403B 2MOA red led Aimpoint clone on a Larue mount for my main optic. I had the Larue mount from a buddy that was moving and was clearing out his junk drawer. I couldn’t afford a new Aimpoint so I am getting by with the Holosun in its place. So far I’ve had zero issues with the Holosun. I don’t beat on it like you likely could with an Aimpoint though.
Moving up the rail you can see the front Magpul MBUS sight along with the Streamlight HLX scout mount light. It’s mounted to a Magpul MLOK light mount. The light mount isn’t as nice as the Arisaka offset scout mount I run on my PWS pistol, but it’s also not as expensive. The Streamlight also isn’t as nice as the Surefire M600DF I use on the PWS pistol, but again it’s MUCH cheaper than the Surefire.
On the other side you can see pressure pad switch the Streamlight uses. It has a momentary switch on the main section and a click on click off button up front. I found if I set the rifle down on a hard surface on the left side of the gun the light will illuminate. This isn’t ideal but that’s some of the drawbacks of a $100 light.
I run a Magpul MLOK angled foregrip at the 6 o’clock position to keep my hand where it needs to be. I like that it interfaces directly to the MLOK slots and doesn’t need an additional rail to mount to like the normal AFG’s.
I store the pistol in a Goodwill score. I don’t know what exactly it’s for, but it’s smaller than a regular guitar case. In my situation it fits the pistol nearly perfectly. The only downside is I must store it without the mag inserted or it won’t fit. As you can see in the photos below the case is very unassuming. I like this because I’m always wondering if someone walking by my car when I’m loading groceries would spot a rifle case and cause troubles. I don’t think anyone would think twice seeing this case. The added benefit is the curvature fits into the trunks corners very nicely.
All in all, this may not be the “Perfect” trunk gun, but I think it’s pretty perfect for the average consumer. For the money spent, it’s a good piece of mind pistol to leave in the trunk and not have to think about all the time.