If you are like me, you may prefer a rifle to a handgun for defensive use. The trouble with a rifle is that it is too darn big to lug around when I am hiking or driving in the desert around Tucson.

Enter KelTec and its SUB2000. When I saw the SUB2000 in a local gun store, it was folded, and I thought it was broken! Once the clerk showed me how to unfold it and make it into a slick little carbine that accepts my Glock magazines, I had to have it.


Table of Contents

Video Review
KelTec History
Why a SU2000?
Customizing the SUB2000
Range Time
Pros and Cons
Specs
Conclusion

Video Review

 


KelTec History
 

KelTec is a company that makes guns that are innovative and just plain fun to shoot. Founded by George Kellgren in 1991, his first design was a pocket pistol that was lightweight and reliable. The SUB2000 followed along with many unusual designs, including bullpup rifles and shotguns.

Many of his guns have been featured in popular action movies. However, they are functioning, practical guns that most shooters appreciate. I certainly appreciate my SUB2000, so let’s find out why.

 

Why a SUB2000?
 

 
KelTec SUB2000 Carbine
KelTec is proudly made in Cocoa, Florida. (Photo: Ben Philippi/Guns.com)

 

I need a lightweight gun that can go with me at a moment's notice, use my Glock 17 magazines, and be more accurate than a handgun. The SUB2000 does all this and fits me well. Its full pistol grip fills my hand and all the controls are easily in reach.

Peep sights are built into the gun and adjustable for elevation. It is stripped down to the minimum to save weight yet fits me like a full-size carbine. My confidence in a first-shot hit is much higher than it is with my handgun. Due to the natural point of aim, I can reach out to more distant targets with ease.

 

Customizing the SUB2000

 

 
KelTec SUB2000 Carbine
The SUB2000 shoots fine right out of the box, but it's also very modifiable. (Photo: Ben Philippi/Guns.com)


I love to upgrade my firearms. KelTec designed this gun for shooters like me, and it easily accepts add-ons. If you never modify the gun, it will serve you well. It needs no mods. However, after owning and shooting the gun for a year, I decided to add a red dot sight. This makes it easy for me to aim with old eyes. I also avoided the need to take my TruGlo sight off when folding the gun by installing an M*CARBO folding sight mount.
 

KelTec SUB2000 Carbine
The M*CARBO flip to the side optic mount is a nice addition. (Photo: Ben Philippi/Guns.com)

 

Later, I added a heavy cocking handle, rubber receiver tube cover, and vertical forward grip. These add to the versatility of the gun. Internal upgrades include an aluminum trigger, trigger guard, and feed ramp – also from M*CARBO. Now I have the option of a standard peep sight or a red dot with less felt recoil, not to mention better control. The gun is still lightweight and compact, and I like that.

 

Range Time

 

KelTec SUB2000 Carbine
With a 14.5 inch length of pull, the SUB2000 shoulders well. (Photo: Ben Philippi/Guns.com)
 

If ever there was an “Ugly Duckling” gun, the SUB2000 is it. When I open the carbine, I hear it lock into firing position solidly. Not so ugly now! Cock the bolt back and release it, push the safety to off, and I am ready for anything. Pop cans and steel targets are no match for the beautiful black carbine. I feel no kick as I shoot, making rapid follow-up shoots easy.

This is a very reliable gun with standard 17-round Glock magazines. The gun blasts through boxes of 9mm ammo as it mows down cans and 2-liter soda bottles. Aftermarket and 30-round magazines extend my firepower and are reliable, too. I have experienced some jams with my 50-round after-market drum, but this is to be expected. Do not blame KelTec.

 

KelTec SUB2000 Carbine
The muzzle is threaded for the addition of a suppressor. (Photo: Ben Philippi/Guns.com)
 

Often, I shoot with my SilencerCo Hybrid suppressor. It tames the 9mm sound down to .22 rimfire levels. The threaded barrel accepts this device or a muzzle brake. Overall, shooting the gun is a joy. It feels bigger than it really is.

 

Pros and Cons

 

KelTec SUB2000 Carbine
A Picatinny rail under the barrel allows mounting a variety of accessories such as a grip and laser. (Photo: Ben Philippi/Guns.com)
 

Pros:

  • Folds in half to a make subcompact carbine
  • Lots of accessories and modifications available
  • Accepts Glock mags
  • Intuitive design and very reliable
  • Soft shooting and accurate

Cons:

  • Requires an accessory to mount an optic and still fold it in half

 

SPECS

Overall Length: 30.5 inches, 16 inches folded
Barrel: 16 inches threaded
Length of Pull: 14.5 inches
Trigger Pull: 9.5 pounds
Weight: 4.25 pounds
Magazine: Glock 19/17 magazines or larger

 

Conclusion
 

KelTec SUB2000 Carbine
I love all of my KelTec's, but the SUB2000 is one of my favorites. (Photo: Ben Philippi/Guns.com)

 

Lightweight, accurate, versatile, and adaptable, the SUB2000 has it where it counts. It has nothing that’s unnecessary. Although no modification is needed, it shines with the ones I have added. It is my go-to truck gun.  

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