Tested: Kimber's new K6s Revolver and Micro 9 Semi-auto

Tested: Kimber's new K6s Revolver and Micro 9 Semi-auto

You've probably already heard that Kimber brought out the K6S, its very first revolver, this year. You may also know that the company also released a 9mm version of its popular, little .380 Micro semiautomatic pistol called the Micro 9.

Shooting Times just received shooting samples of both guns, and I had the pleasure of putting them through our standard evaluation procedure for this report. Here's how Kimber's New K6s Revolver and Micro 9 Semi-auto tested.

Actually, I had an advance look at the new K6s Stainless double-action revolver last year in preparation for writing the article that appeared in Kimber's 2016 magalog. That project involved visiting the Kimber factories in New York, where I got my hands on the new wheelgun and fired it on Kimber's state-of-the-art indoor shooting range. For this report, Shooting Times received another K6s and a Micro 9, both right off the production line, that I put through our standard shooting review on my home range.

The all-steel, double-action-only K6s revolver is chambered for .357 Magnum, and its cylinder holds six rounds.


K6s Stainless


The K6s Stainless is chambered for .357 Magnum, and it has a double-action-only trigger mechanism, an internal hammer, a swing-out cylinder, a small frame, and a 2-inch barrel. The "s" stands for small, as in the frame size, and the frame is all steel. The firing mechanism uses a floating firing pin that's held in the frame by a pressed-in firing pin bushing.

The internal action parts are accessed via a sideplate that is attached to the frame with three torx-head screws. The mainspring is contained within the grip frame, and it is a coil type.

The stainless-steel cylinder holds six rounds of .357 Magnum or .38 Special ammunition. The charge holes are countersunk, and the cylinder swings out to the left side. It rotates counterclockwise.

One primary design criterion Senior Product Manager Ron Dudzic, who oversaw the design and development of the K6s Stainless, was tasked with was to make the cylinder the smallest diameter on the market that could hold six rounds. Kimber never even considered building a five-shot snubnose revolver.


The material they settled on is 410 stainless steel. The engineers designed the cylinder with six flat flutes. It locks up via a center pin, which is activated by a checkered, rectangular-shaped cylinder latch. The latch actually pushes in, not up or to the side as with other brands of swing-out-cylinder revolvers. Pushing in on the latch is a more natural movement and makes operating the gun quicker and more effective.

The trigger's fingerpiece is smooth and measures 0.3 inch wide. The double action trigger pull is factory-rated at between 9.5 and 10.5 pounds. The sample I got my hands on averaged 10 pounds, according to my RCBS trigger pull scale, and it is crisp, smooth, and consistent.

The one-piece barrel is 2 inches in length and is threaded to the frame. It's made of the same 410 stainless steel as the cylinder, and it has broach rifling at a twist rate of one turn in 16 inches. The serrated front sight is pinned to the barrel; the rear sight is dovetailed. The style of the rear sight is unique for a revolver, and it reminds me of a combat-style Model 1911 rear sight. Its face is serrated. Both sights are all black, and sight radius is 4.1 inches.


The K6s's dovetailed rear sight looks more like an auto pistol's combat-style sight than a traditional revolver rear sight. It is drift-adjustable for windage. The front sight is pinned to the 2.0-inch stainless-steel barrel.

The standard version of the K6s Stainless comes with blue-gray rubber grips made by Crimson Trace. They don't have the built-in laser Crimson Trace is so famous for, but a Kimber spokesman told me a laser-gripped version of the K6s is a natural, and Crimson Trace has already announced just such a grip for the K6s.

The K6s Stainless is 6.62 inches long, 1.39 inches wide, and 4.46 inches high. It weighs 23 ounces. Its finish is called "Smooth Satin." The backstrap has vertical serrations that are designed to help provide a secure grip. All edges of the K6s have been softened.

Usually, swing-out-cylinder double-action revolvers have a flat area on the side of the frame up front that butts up against the yoke when the cylinder is opened fully. Consequently, their yokes typically are not symmetrical. The K6s Stainless's yoke shape is symmetrical. According to Dudzic, the K6s Stainless doesn't have that flat area on the frame because a special axle was designed into the crane to allow a hard stop for the cylinder when it's opened.

I fired the K6s Stainless with a variety of .357 Magnum and .38 Special ammunition, and the results are listed in the accompanying chart. Overall, the gun was easy to shoot, even with the .357 Magnum ammo. In fact, I did my most accurate shooting with the Magnum ammo.

The shape of the grip comfortably filled my shooting hand, and the sweep of the backstrap kept the gun from shifting up in my hand. Felt recoil was not harsh, even with the most powerful loads. And as I said earlier, the trigger pull was excellent. By the way, I used a DeSantis Speed Scabbard black leather holster made specifically for the K6s revolver for some draw-and-fire drills. It's a nice holster.

Micro 9

The new Micro 9 is based on Kimber's popular recoil-operated .380 ACP Micro semiautomatic pistol that was born in 2013. The 9mm version is a tad bigger than the .380 Micro, measuring 6.1 inches long, 1.06 inches thick, and 4.1 inches tall. It looks and handles a lot like a small Model 1911, and it easily fits in a pants or jacket pocket, but it's not so small that it feels odd in the hand. In fact, it feels quite good in my hand, and it points naturally.

Standard magazine capacity is six rounds, and the pistol comes with one flush-fitting magazine. An extended seven-round magazine is available for purchase as a separate item. The magazine release button is checkered, and it protrudes just enough to be easily activated.

The new Micro 9 Two-Tone model comes with a 3.15-inch barrel; fixed, all-black sights; a solid aluminum trigger; an alloy frame; and rosewood grips. Joel switched out the factory grips for a set of Crimson Trace aftermarket laser grips.

The low-profile, all-black sights are dovetailed into the slide. Sight radius is 4.3 inches.

The combat-style hammer is skeletonized, and the pistol's thumb safety operates sort of like one on a full-size Model 1911. However, when the hammer is fully cocked and the safety is engaged, the safety does not lock the slide, so the slide can be racked to empty the chamber with the safety engaged. With the hammer down, the safety can be engaged, and engaged this way, it does lock the slide, plus it prevents the hammer from being fully cocked. The hammer can be positioned in its halfcock notch.

There is no Model 1911-style grip safety, but a disconnector prevents the hammer from falling unless the slide and barrel are fully into battery. Also, there's a firing pin block that prevents the firing pin from contacting the primer of a chambered cartridge until the trigger is pressed.

Three versions are currently offered: the Two-Tone model that I fired for this report; the Stainless model that comes with rosewood grip panels; and the Crimson Carry version that comes with Crimson Trace Master Series laser grips. Note that for my report, I switched out the factory-standard rosewood grips with a set of aftermarket Crimson Trace laser grips, and I also used a DeSantis Mini Scabbard brown leather holster. CrossBreed also offers holsters for the new Micro 9.

Shooting the Micro 9 from a sandbag benchrest at 25 yards, I was able to produce group averages measuring 3.24 inches or less with five different factory loads. That's well within the accepted standard for self-defense pistols.

Standard magazine capacity for the Micro 9 is six rounds, and the pistol comes with one flush-fitting magazine. An extended seven-round magazine is available for purchase as a separate item.

Out of the Micro 9's short 3.15-inch barrel, the 9mm ammo I fired produced velocities ranging between 912 and 1,165 fps. For comparison's sake, those same loadings range in velocity from 1,052 to 1,374 fps out of my 5.5-inch-barreled 9mm Model 1911.

The Micro 9 functioned perfectly with all of the ammo I fired, and its trigger pull was very good. It was heavier than I prefer, averaging 8 pounds, 8 ounces, according to my RCBS trigger pull scale, but it was smooth.

Both new pocket pistols from Kimber functioned perfectly during my shooting session. They are easy to conceal, and they are accurate. They are the kind of personal-protection handgun you can stake your life on. But that's not surprising. Kimber has been making dependable self-defense and duty handguns for more than two decades.

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Recommended Articles

See More Recommendations

Popular Videos

Black Hills Evolution of Rifle Cartridge: .308 Win. 175 Gr. Match

Black Hills Evolution of Rifle Cartridge: .308 Win. 175 Gr. Match

David Fortier talks with Jeff Hoffman of Black Hills Ammunition about the evolution of the .308 Win. 175 Gr. Match bullet.

Pinging Steel At Over A Mile Away

Pinging Steel At Over A Mile Away

Big bore semiauto or a lever gun? We look at the futuristic .450 Bushmaster and how it compares to the tried and true .45-70. ISS Prop House gives us the rundown on the guns used in Enemy at the Gate. We ping steel with a .300 WinMag at over a mile.

All About .300 Blackout

All About .300 Blackout

The .300 Blackout is here to stay, and we take some time to look at new technology surrounding this cartridge. Next, we pit subsonic rivals against each other before stretching the legs of this CQB round out to 600 yards from a short 9-inch barrel.

The Future Of Special Operations Small Arms

The Future Of Special Operations Small Arms

We're taking a look at what the Army's Elite Units are using for service rifles and what the future of SOCOM sniping looks like.

See More Popular Videos

Trending Articles

Crimson Trace enters the riflescope business with the Crimson Trace CTL-3420 4-20X 50mm. Optics

Review: Crimson Trace CTL-3420 4-20X 50mm

Joel J. Hutchcroft - April 29, 2019

Crimson Trace enters the riflescope business with the Crimson Trace CTL-3420 4-20X 50mm.

Is the SIG P320 modular pistol the best polymer-framed high-capacity sidearm ever designed? Handguns

SIG SAUER P320 Review

Joseph Von Benedikt - September 13, 2018

Is the SIG P320 modular pistol the best polymer-framed high-capacity sidearm ever designed?

These cheap postwar variants offer perhaps the best value on the vintage-Mauser market. Rifles

Yugoslavian M24/47 Mauser-Pattern Rifle

Joseph von Benedikt - May 13, 2019

These cheap postwar variants offer perhaps the best value on the vintage-Mauser market.

Shooting Times editor Joel Hutchcroft provides a comprehensive list of ideal Father's Day gifts. Accessories

Shooting Times Father's Day 2019 Gift Guide

Joel J. Hutchcroft - May 07, 2019

Shooting Times editor Joel Hutchcroft provides a comprehensive list of ideal Father's Day...

See More Trending Articles

More Handguns

The .357 Magnum Colt King Cobra revolver has been redesigned with personal protection in mind—in the city as well as on the trail. Handguns

Colt King Cobra Revolver Review

Layne Simpson - October 10, 2019

The .357 Magnum Colt King Cobra revolver has been redesigned with personal protection in...

The .327 Federal Magnum offers plenty of power for self-defense and small-game hunting, and Ruger supports the round with a bunch of revolvers, including the Ruger SP101. Handguns

Ruger SP101 Revolver .327 Federal Magnum Review

Brad Miller, PhD - November 21, 2019

The .327 Federal Magnum offers plenty of power for self-defense and small-game hunting, and...

The Cimarron Model 1862 Pocket Navy Conversion combines the nostalgia of a classic 19th-century revolver with the convenience of modern ammunition. Handguns

Cimarron Model 1862 Pocket Navy Conversion .380 ACP

Joel J. Hutchcroft - January 09, 2020

The Cimarron Model 1862 Pocket Navy Conversion combines the nostalgia of a classic...

Pistol manufacturer Glock is entering the rimfire market with the introduction of the Glock 44 .22 LR pistol. Handguns

Glock 44 .22 LR Pistol — New for 2020

Shooting Times Digital Staff - February 07, 2020

Pistol manufacturer Glock is entering the rimfire market with the introduction of the Glock 44...

See More Handguns

GET THE MAGAZINE Subscribe & Save

Digital Now Included!

SUBSCRIBE NOW

Give a Gift   |   Subscriber Services

PREVIEW THIS MONTH'S ISSUE

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.