SHOT 2023: The Ounce Pistol — Ultra Compact & Easy to Deploy By: Kat Ainsworth


Truly small, yet functional, pistols are few and far between. The Ounce is one such pistol, designed to be ultra-compact, super lightweight, and easy to deploy. This pistol came about when the founder of the company had a loved one who was raped. He began trying to devise a user-friendly pistol that was ideal for deep concealment, not intimidating for those who might not know much about guns, and reliable. The result was The Ounce, a folding rimfire pistol.

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The Ounce pistol
The Ounce is a folding pistol designed for ease of concealment and reliable function. (Photo credit: Ounce Pistols)

According to Ounce Pistols, the name of the pistol came from a Benjamin Franklin quote: “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.”

Of course, the gun actually weighs more than a single ounce; The Ounce has a loaded weight of 8 ounces, which is still admittedly quite lightweight. Being chambered in 22 LR helps maintain the gun’s lighter weight, even with a capacity of 10 +1. And if you’re thinking 22 LR could absolutely never get the job done for defensive purposes, you might want to take that up with Bella Twin, the woman who killed a grizzly bear with 22 LR back in 1953. Yes, 22 LR is a small cartridge, but it can be effective.

the ounce pistol rimfire
A rendering of The Ounce from the manufacturer’s website shows it both open and closed. (Photo credit: Ounce Pistols)

Features of The Ounce include:

  • 22 LR chambering.
  • 10 +1 capacity.
  • Loaded weight of 8 ounces.
  • Made with a closed frame so there’s no risk of slide bite, according to the gun maker.
  • Chambered round indicator for a visual confirmation of when the gun is ready to fire.
  • Spent brass ejects from the base of the gun rather than the side.
  • Minimal felt recoil and muzzle rise.
  • Designed for deep concealment and less risk of printing.
  • Chambering a round involves gripping the handle, making it easier than racking the slide of a standard handgun, according to the manufacturer.
  • Magazine is loaded with no need to push against a tight spring.
  • Locked breech design.
  • 3.75-inch barrel length for better ballistics than many subcompact pistols.
  • Measures 4.75 inches by 3.875 inches when closed.
  • Measures  5.75 inches by 4.75 inches when open.
  • 0.875-inch width.
folded ounce pistol
When it’s folded, it cannot be fired, and it’s even easier to conceal. (Photo credit: Ounce Pistols)

The manufacturer states loading The Ounce, chambering a round, and firing is a straightforward, simple process. Loading involves opening the side of the pistol where the magazine is located and following the steps to reset the hammer and load the gun with 22 LR. Rounds are loaded nose down with the bullets pointed downward in the direction of the grip. The Ounce has enough space on its uppermost portion to make chambering a round easy, and there’s no struggle with a heavy spring, either.

The Ounce can be seen at SHOT Show booth 41707. What do you think? Is The Ounce on your must-have list?

ultracompact handgun with 22LR
The Ounce loaded with 22 LR. (Photo credit: Ounce Pistols)

MSRP for The Ounce is set at $899.00.