A look back at the Kel-Tec Sub-2000

I am surprised that TFB has not talked about the Sub-2000. As far as I can search, not once.

So lets take a look at this neat little folding pistol caliber carbine. For those who are not familiar with this weapon, It is chambered in 9mm or 40 S&W. Kel-Tec makes two versions. Glock magazine compatible and another version that can use Sig, S&W, or Beretta mags depending on the magazine catch installed. But the most intriguing feature is its ability to fold in half for storage.

Hickok45 does a little review on the Sub-2000

Nicholas C

Co-Founder of KRISSTALK forums, an owner’s support group and all things KRISS Vector related. Nick found his passion through competitive shooting while living in NY. He participates in USPSA and 3Gun. He loves all things that shoots and flashlights. Really really bright flashlights.

Any questions please email him at nicholas.c@staff.thefirearmblog.com


  • Geo

    Aside from gunbroker, it is impossible to find one for sale.

    • Nicholas C

      I got mine off Armslist for $230.

  • kipy

    Good grief don’t bring anymore attention to it TFB, I can’t find one as it is.

    • Gregory Markle

      I’ve been trying to sell one for a while and I think the price is good for what is included but no takers. Go figure.

  • Spyco

    If only the Glock 9mm version was actually priced like the Glock 40 version.

    • Nicholas C

      Go buy the 40 version. Then call Kel-tec. I did. Barrel and bolt cost me $150. No front sight as I was adding my hipoint carbine front sight on it. No it is converted to 9mm.

      • noob

        have you experimented with optics on the Sub-2000? I’ve seen a few solutions including some hinged contraptions that allow folding on people’s blogs but I’d love to hear your experiences.

        • Nicholas C

          Here is an old pic of my Sub2K. It’s current version is the picture used in this article. I added a thin picatinny rail to the top of the hand guard. The best option is the Red Lion Precision handguard.

          It indexes so you rotate the handguard 90 deg to move the optic out of the way when you fold the Sub-2000

          • noob

            Sweet thanks!

            so you decided to remove the rail and use the peep and orange post.

            What turned you off the optic?

          • Nicholas C

            I have to remove the optic to fold the gun. And I like the folding feature more than using an optic.

          • drdougrx

            I had 2…both brand new. Jam-o-matics. Shot all kinds of ammo and hundreds of rounds in each. I use +p 124gr factory and handloads. I lubed the bolts, put the “o” ring on the bottom of the mag so it wouldn’t wiggle, etc, etc. Even sent one back twice. No go,,,FTE on each. Both were GLOCK setups. Will give the S2k one more chance if I can find a Beretta mag set up. BTW…I took the $$ from the sale and bought a CX4 Storm….problems solved….

          • Blackhawk

            I had a Glock .40 for a number of years. Had the current crop of add-ons been available when I owned mine, I would never have gotten rid of it. The front sight is/was too fragile and the trigger was _really_ gritty on mine, but it fit into a paintball marker bag with four mags and sat in the back of my car with no trouble and no notice and it was compatible with my Glock 27 and 23.

          • noob

            just a thought – the sub 2000 has been around about 13 years. Under US federal patent law, the patents covering it simple design should expire in another three years.

            What would happen if a company with production capacity and an eye for quality started making cheap copies when the design becomes public domain?

            would you buy another one?

          • Nicholas C

            I dont know much about Patent law, but couldnt Kel-Tec just renew their patent, copyright, or trademark?

          • noob

            I think that with renewals the patent is max 20 years. after that it becomes public domain to encourage other people to adapt and innovate the design.


          • Kivaari

            It seems anyone could build a similar carbine, as nothing is new except maybe for how it folds. A simple blowback semi-sub that didn’t fold – but worked well and had real serious sights should be possible.
            It is hard to get past how toy like the construction is. After using “real guns’ professionally, I just can’t warm to toys.

          • Blackhawk

            Probably not now. There are other options available.

          • noob

            lone wolf lowers? RONI kit?

            I’m looking for a recommendation to fill the sub2k-shaped hole in my life.

          • Blackhawk

            AR or AK pistol in a rifle caliber. Same approximate size; more punch.

          • Gregory Markle

            My 9mm Glock Sub2000 has eaten everything I’ve thrown at it…as usual Kel-Tec’s QC is less than optimal with some diamonds and some turds!

          • Mazryonh

            You should have included this picture in the main article here and shared some photos showing how the optic can be rotated out of the way (you don’t have to re-zero it once you turn it back to the 12-o’-clock position, do you?).

          • Nicholas C

            Sorry, I think you misunderstood. The Red Lion handguard is the one that can rotate. Mine cannot. I don’t have the Red Lion handguard. If you have the Red Lion Precision handguard, it can rotate and indexes for re-zeroing of your optic.

  • jim

    The Sub2000 really is neat and I liked mine a lot. I got it from a buddy for an ar-7 plus $50 years ago, but ended up trading it for a like nib colt new agent with laser grips after newtown. I couldn’t say no to that. One day I’ll get another Sub2000 if I find a good deal on one. The only thing I didn’t like about it was the stock sights… they work but suck to adjust.

  • BOB

    The 9mm is fun and sure it picks up some speed, but the .40 benefits greatly from the longer barrel, giving you 10mm HOT load speeds. I’m always surprised that the 9mm is so much more desirable, after all, there is very little difference in price per round between the 2 any more.

    • Anon. E Maus

      Capacity, my man. A folding carbine, that works, that you can feed Glock 33 round stickmags, reliable hi-cap mags in a handy little package. I wish Kel-Tec would step up production of these. Well I wish they would step up production of all their guns.

      • BOB

        22vs33… I suppose so, but I wouldn’t feel undergunned with the 40 and a 22 rd mag, maybe 24 with +2 mag extenders. No one seems to criticize FALs, AR10s, PTR/G3/s for only having 20 rd mags.

  • John

    Everytime I find one for sale, it’s always either a beretta mag one or a SW 5900 mag one. Glock ones seem incredibly coveted

  • Chris

    Wasn’t able to find one with glock mags before my state went insane. Now I can’t own one – even if I found one – until I move.

  • Hooman

    I had the glock 40. Great gun when it was working. Accurate and super fun to shoot. However after about a month, every 2nd or 3rd shot would engage the safety. I sent it back to kel tec and they supposedly fixed it. Went to the range and before I knew it, the same problem. Sent it back to kel tec and they fixed it. Got it back and same problem. After that I decided my life could not depend on this gun. Traded it in. I read up on others having this problem and I believe the 40 cal is the only one with this problem. The 9mm appears to work fine. It is a shame cause the platform has a lot of potential. Buyer beware.

  • floppyscience

    Almost 15 years later and you still can barely find them. 🙂 Thanks for reminding me.

  • dsdfsdf

    prices doubled since the 2012s gun grab $750 for something that used to cost $350 and still none available. Vaporware.

  • BryanS

    One of my favorite guns, almost regret selling it. But at the time, Nick didnt show me that the 40 was easy to convert 🙂

    • BryanS

      And it would look better with my 50rd drum.

  • fltactical

    I have one in the trunk of my car. Inside a messenger bag folded up. 2 33 round glock magazines, 2 17 round ones as well. 100 rounds 9mm boxed ammo. Glock 26 in glove box with 3 loaded 10 round mags. Nothing like having a 9mm rifle ready to rock and roll in my Get home bag.

  • woodsy

    I drove three hours to get one three years ago. $300 otd. Takes the s&w 59 series mags which is great for me since I have a 669. Plus with the s&w you can swap to the Beretta and SIG mag catches down the road if you want.
    I’ve got my with a one point sling, folding vertical grip, the keltec length of pull spacer, a buffer, and a buffer tube cover. All in all its a fun gun.

  • Jeff

    I won the lottery when I bought mine a back in about 2009, I called my gun shop and they had it in 9mm/Glock/Parkerized. That baby is locked up safe and sound, it’s my version of the KSG in want-ability. I’ll never get rid of it, with how hard they are to find I consider it a collectible.

    • B-real

      Collectible, nah! I know someone that works at Kel-Tec and there slowly expanding and will be stepping up production of all their guns in a few years.

  • Mark

    i bought one last year, its one of my favorite guns, (im a big fan of compact little rifles or pdws)

  • El Duderino

    Had one (one of the rare hard chrome models at that) but it spit in my face (I shoot lefty).

    Kind of miss it, if I ran across a Coyote Tan 9mm Glock mag model I’d pick it up and try to solve the burnt powder to the face issue.

  • Mazryonh

    I thought that this blog entry would actually go over the Sub-2000 and show the writers’ opinions on it.

    Anyway, folding is nice, but are there gun cases specifically made for this when it’s folded? Would a 16-inch PCC be better or worse if it a folding or fully-collapsible/telescoping stock instead?

    • Nicholas C

      I try to keep my opinions to myself as I am a fan boy and I am biased haha.

      There isnt a specific gun case, but I like to use discrete laptop messenger style cases for mine. My wife gets a bunch of cheap laptop sized messenger bags from conventions that she goes to for her work. They are science and engineering conventions. So no one would suspect a folding rifle in something like that.

      • Mazryonh

        After the whole “hide a Tommy Gun in a violin/guitar case” trope, I’m sure that any and all bags are searched/scanned these days in high-security areas.

        But yes, it would have been nice if you could review this PCC and compare it against PCCs from other companies.

    • Gregory Markle

      A double tennis racket bag works great.

  • El Duderino

    I had a hard chromed 9mm Beretta mag model (that I converted to S&W mags). Got rid of it b/c it spit powder into my face. I shoot left handed.

  • Barry Fitzgerald

    If you can get it for $350-$375 or so it is a good gun. Mine uses the Beretta M-9 mags and I have an M-9 and a Beretta CX4 Storm so all the mags match. Beretta now makes great 30 round mags. The length of the gun is 28-30 inches and you can easily hit out to 100 meters. It is a perfect house gun, especially coupled with the M-9 and the CX4 Storm. If your are over 6 feet in height it is hard to shoot. The great thing is it is a good traveling gun with a lot of firepower. It can be locked while folded with an internal lock.

  • AUGgieDevilDoggie

    No thanks! I purchased a new SUB-2000 in .40 S. & W. that literally (using the correct meaning of the word) fell apart in my hands while shooting it. This happened after the gun had been sent to Kel-Tec for warranty work (magazine catch issue-mags would fall out of the gun on their own after five or six shots). It broke apart between the rear sight and the trigger during the first trip to the range. At the most it had 25 rounds through it before falling to pieces. The LBS I bought this POS from was kind enough to give me a full refund.

  • Kivaari

    I never met an owner that was happy with the performance. The concept is good. The sights were toy gun quality. Since I never met a happy owner, I never risked buying one. It appears that a good pistol caliber carbine, sized to match the caliber, doesn’t exist for under $2000.

  • ChuckyTee

    Great review,,,,, that somebody else did…

  • SSSSn

    Have one of these in 9mm using Glock magazines as I also use a Glock 19
    I kept mine stock but others complaints about the underwhelming sights is
    correct. I got one that works and I see these as more of a survival bug-out
    firearm….a waaaaaay more powerful AR-7. I tolerate 9mm because of the
    magazines and ammo cost. If they just made one in 45 ACP….sigh.