Hank Strange Reviews the Generation 2 Kel-Tec Sub-2000

Hank Strange, a longtime friend of TFB, and he was lucky enough to get his hands on a generation 2 Sub-2000. It looks like this could be a real winner! The Kel-Tec Sub-2000 concept is a pistol-caliber carbine that can be folded up for easy transport in a backpack. It is believed by some to be the ultimate bug out bag carbine.

Alex C.

Alex is a Senior Writer for The Firearm Blog and Director of TFBTV.


  • TheNotoriousIUD

    My preferred bug out gun would be a suppressed 10/22. I’d use the back pack to carry about 10,000 rounds.
    Try that with a .223.
    Nice range BTW, I don’t get enough practice shooting at ambulances.

    • SCW

      You’re gonna carry 75lbs of ammo around with you?

      • Solution!

        • roguetechie

          The MIT version doesn’t require 3 kilowatts to run… On average theirs doesn’t even require 5 watts at peak demand…. I mean the cool hi Tech tier 1 iron man vibe goes out the window when your exoskeleton requires you to put a tow package on your ALICE pack to hitch a radio flyer with a Kubota generator in it that has to be running if you want to keep moving…

          • Because I was totally serious.

          • roguetechie

            I totally wasn’t… LOL

            I have a Chinese m44 clone that I modified to accepted a 64 round DT drum…

            But honestly seeing the picture of bleex totally triggered a moment of bitterness at the horribly stupid decisions we see routinely made on our dime by the pentagon and other parts of the government.

      • iksnilol

        We need a belt fed .22 with an ammo backpack.

      • TheNotoriousIUD

        I figure in an end of the world scenario the only real currency will be ammo and 75 lbs is not that much weight. Rifle, ammo, water and a gun cleaning kit would be the only stuff you would need to carry. You can shoot food and scavenge anything else along the way.

        • iksnilol

          Uh, that’s not how things work in reality but OK.

          • TheNotoriousIUD

            Oh sorry, I forgot I was dealing with a leading expert in scenarios that have never happened.

          • iksnilol

            If your plan is to just find stuff to keep yourself alive then you my good sir have a terrible plan.

            + SHTF scenarios have happened plenty of times. Rwanda, Bosnia, Sierra Leone, WW2.

          • TheNotoriousIUD

            I think staying quiet during the day, moving only at night, shooting small game for food and carrying lots of ammo is a bit more realistic than creating a Thunderdome.
            Also more boring.

          • BryanS

            Your SHTF fantasy also include a orthopedic surgeon after lugging around all that weight for weeks on end?

          • TheNotoriousIUD

            I guess im lucky to still be fairly young and in decent shape. 78-85 lbs is manageable weight. Besides soldiers routinely hump more than that. And if things were really that bad then I think I would be extremely motivated and would want every piece of ammo I could carry.

          • BryanS

            Im young and have been in decent shape. Lots of our vets were too, but are having issues from being laden down with 100+ pounds of gear. It is not good for the human body.

        • Paul White

          water’s 8 lbs per gallon; stuff’s heavy as hell and you need it regularly. You also need filteration/purification option for it.

          • TheNotoriousIUD

            Purification pills, canteen and a pump are a lot lighter. Plus water can be boiled while holed up during the day.

    • Ripley

      To shoot 10,000 rabbits? Or for weeks of suppressive fire?

      • TheNotoriousIUD

        To shoot 10,000 Maniacs.
        I hate that band.

  • Scott Tuttle

    hope they have some upgrades for us gen1 owners. I’d like that front site.

  • A

    Is his name Stange or Strange?

  • Gordon J Davis Jr

    I would call the Keltec Sub2000 the ultimate non-NFA bug out bag carbine. Once you go into the NFA side of things, there are plenty of SBRs I’d rank above the Sub2000 – both pistol and rifle caliber.

  • Nicks87

    Oh no! “C-clamp” grip. Let the flame war begin!

    • MrEllis

      I c-clamp my XDs… it hurts.

      • Real men grip with teeth.

        • MrEllis

          I’m developing the “pit-clamp.” Still in the spit-balling stage.

  • GhostofBrowningNagle

    is it unobtainable like the gen 1?

    • notguilty


      • Notalima

        Triple that…

    • Duke Nukem

      Instead of rushing to post the first snarky comment I could muster, I paused and watched the video… with the audio on. After watching the video, I learned that the Gen 1 was slow to produce because the furniture had to be cleaned up by hand. Apparently, the new design for the handguards doesn’t require hand fitting and should speed up production.

      • J-

        And hopefully bring down cost. The ones in the wild that I have seen are far more expensive than the MSRP posted online.

        • Duke Nukem

          In the same video, I listened to Hank Strange explain why “in the wild” prices are higher than MSRP. (Hint: It has nothing to with KT and everything to do with distributors and vendors.)

          • J-

            He got to that 20 min after I posted. And yes, I know that Kel-Tec’s price is fixed with the distributor, but in stores and on Gun Broker the prices are still pretty extreme. Having new ones come onto the market will drive down the price (supply and demand). Same thing happened with AR’s during the great gun rush. Some guy would buy every $699 DPMS AR’s as he could from Wal-Mart when they came in at 6:00 am and sell them on Gunbroker for $1600. I watched people do it. Heck, beat up old Bushmasters were going for $1500 at gun shows and people were paying it. Bubbles are bubbles.

            I found it amazing that I could buy a used Beretta CX4 using 92 mags for a little less than used Sub2000 using Glock mags at the height of the boom (about $700). The again, the CX4 was never really popular and rarely appeared on anybody’s “ban list.”

            I have learned that the Glock mag versions cost more (sometimes 2X) the non-Glock versions. Which is why the one I have (and the one I stupidly sold) were the much less popular S&W 59 series versions. Also I have an S&W 5904 and two 6904 so that combo fit me nicely.

            Still, if the prices come down as more hit the market, I will pick another one up, and my Gen 1 will go from over valued safe queen to bedroom HD gun (which is why I bought it in the first place).

      • GhostofBrowningNagle

        i watched the video. however considering now i only see a few gen 1s every now and then for sale second hand at an extreme markup. they’ll have to speed up production quiiiiiiiiiiite a bit to go from nigh impossible to acquire to readily available

  • nadnerbus

    someone should make something like the sub 2000, only that hinges to the side, so optics can be left mounted.

    • Cornelius Carroll

      Good idea!

  • cutamerc

    Did they give it last round hold open?

    • displacer

      Does it still use your shoulder as a partial bolt stop, resulting in a perfect round bruise over your clavicle every range trip? More importantly, did they do something about all the Sub-2000s out there that are now cracking around the ejection port and barrel trunnion or even breaking clean in half at the hinge? 🙁

  • spotr

    It looks like the stock extension adjustment defeats the lock/fold option since it would hit the front sight. Unless you can move the front sight forward somehow…?

    • DaveP.

      Stock adjustment seems to be a simple pushbutton. It looks like the gun only folds in one stock position, but it doesn’t look like putting the stock back into position for folding would add much extra complexity.
      OTOH, given the minimal stock adjustment possible, I question whether it’s worth the extra cost and loss of strength over a fixed stock.

    • Ripley

      Both the butt and the grip could fold too. They are just plastic.

  • klmspider@yahoo.com

    I’d like one..but maybe I want a SU16 more!

  • Don Ward

    I really don’t get the fantasy of these takedown guns and the need for them to then be shoved into an arbitrary small space like a bug-out bag. If you are “bugging out” you’ll be carrying your rifle slung or at ready. If you want a concealed weapon you still have the handgun option. Presumably if you have your B.O.B. It is in a location where you can store it like a car which also has plenty of room for guns ranging from a tricked out AR to a lowly used Mossberg shotgun or 30-30 that you picked up cheap at a garage sale. Even if you did need to conceal it in the bag you can always break down mist rifles or shotguns to a handy size. So that just leaves whatever advantage you might have with this Keltec being one minute faster to deploy than say reassembling a Remington 870 that takes up the same space.

    • iksnilol

      Because having stuff take up less space is nice and handy? Not everyone lives in a big house or has a gigantic gun locker.

      Also, carrying a rifle slung and openly is a good way to get shot/disarmed. At least that’s what happened in Bosnia.

      • Also happened in Katrina. Having an openly displayed firearm while traveling on foot is an absurd and dangerous plan, short of a full on, 90% depopulation disaster.

        • Cal S.


          So I’ll just let any old bandit/rapist/bad guy who doesn’t care how he carries his gun get the drop on me. Every. Single. Time.

          The element of surprise (carrying concealed) is only practical in a world where not everyone is trying to kill you immediately. In a truly end of the world scenario, regardless of depopulation figures, it’s very likely that bad guys are going to shoot you on sight openly-displayed firearm or not to obtain your resources or just because you happened along. Honest guys will figure that you’re trying to protect yourself and would most likely NOT shoot you on sight and avoid/communicate first.

          Just sayin’.

          • iksnilol

            Look. I’ll explain what happened to people in my homeland. UNPROFOR sees a guy with a rifle that isn’t in millitary uniform, they detain him and of course disarm him. They see a guy with a backpack? Nothing happens. Though you can carry a rifle slung on your back with a backpack thrown over it to conceal it. The rifle needs to be short (a meter at most, so it doesn’t stick out from your outline) and it needs to be done right for it to work.

            Also, the only way to avoid somebody getting the drop on you is doing that to them or by travelling at night. Of course don’t wave a flashlight around while doing so.

          • Cal S.

            In a world where you can’t count on police, and you’re worried about roving bands of looters and killers, then you put yourself at a suicidal disadvantage by not having a weapon readily accessible. As for traveling at night and hiding during the day, well by all means, but hiding only works until it doesn’t, ya know?

            If there are organized police forces still (as is the case in your illustration), then what are you doing bugging out? Hole up in your house where you’ve got your food and you can defend yourself better against mobs/bandits.

          • BryanS

            Wait, are you countering this guys real life experience?

            Its not like there hasn’t ever been this sort of thing in history EvAr.

          • Cal S.

            No, I was talking apples and he was talking oranges. I was simply clarifying.

        • sam

          Yeah that goes for me: long story short I give weight to the possibility of situations where I’d want to take off with more’n a handgun but not open carry. Like a semi-shtf. Pardon my vulgar acronym.

      • Don Ward

        So then what is the point of this weapon at all? Carry a handgun. It is concealable and you can draw it faster rather than having it stashed in a backpack where it does no good.

        Second, any place that can carry a backpack can hold a 7 pound Winchester 94 or Remington 870 which are both lower profile weapons than a tactical looking KelTec and which are both better weapons in any SHTF situation.

        And any place where you will stash your “Bug-out-Bag” will be big enough to hold the weapons that I mentioned. With this weapon, you get the worst of both worlds in that it is too big to carry on you all the time like a handgun yet it is inferior to more traditional rifles.

        Worse, this gun is relatively expensive compared to comparable and more effective firearms. And finally it’s a Keltec.

        • iksnilol

          I am sure you are good with a pistol but most people are way better with a rifle than a pistol.

          Never said to not carry a pistol. Regarding shotguns, I am sceptical. Sure, a shotgun has power, but it also has limited capacity and range + heavy and bulky ammo. That and with the PCC you can share ammo and magazines with your pistol.

          If it was a pointless weapon then it wouldn’t be as popular as it is.

          • Don Ward

            Just because something is popular, doesn’t mean it is good. See the Taurus Judge. And if you’re talking a survival weapon, yes a shotgun, say in 20 gauge which you can fire bird shot, slugs and a buck for hunting small game, birds, medium game or as self defense while not looking like a “scary” tactical weapon is better.

            My main issue with this is that it’s a KelTec, that it’s a folding weapon which puts a lot of limits on what you can do with it and it is relatively more expensive than more capable weapon systems.

            The only thing going for it is that it “looks cool” which goes a long way for some folks.

          • iksnilol

            Uh, the Kel-Tec is way cheaper than other pistol caliber carbines. Also, why is the folding nature of it limiting? Why the hate on Kel-Tec?

            But the Taurus Judge is a shotgun. You like shotguns. Never had the impression that the Judge was popular to be honest.

            *smh* you just can’t please some people.

          • Don Ward

            Because some people are annoyed at gun companies pushing bad gimmick weapons on consumers and folks lap it up. And a Taurus Judge is a handgun, not a shotgun, which chambers a round that is ballistically inferior than – say – a .45 (Long) Colt while taking up more real estate. Hence a gimmick.

            There are serious drawbacks with a folding weapon. But setting that aside there is no point in a folding rifle which can fit in an arbitrary space other than that it looks cool. And for the $400 or $500 dollars it costs, you can get a far better weapon.

          • iksnilol

            Yes there is a point, because it is much more practical and compact than disassembling it.

            Like I said, if it was as pointless as you think it is then it wouldn’t have survived. Not at that price point and with those looks.

    • Cal S.

      The Kel-Tec is a fantastic, compact gun. In its rightful place, it can be used very effectively. Think of this as no more than a camp carbine. You’re out in the wilderness on a weekend get away and you don’t want to draw a lot of attention to yourself lugging around a 10-lb loaded AR. Instead, you can opt for a 4.5-lb folded rifle in your backpack.

      • Don Ward

        For the price, I can think of numerous other lightweight firearms that are better and more versatile. If you are going to be carrying it in the backpack all the time, just get a handgun. Get a Ruger .22 target pistol with an extra mag and two boxes of ammo which you can use as a survival gun to plink rabbits, squirrels or signal for help. If you want a rifle, get a rifle and keep it locked up and hidden in your vehicle where you also have your “Bug-out-Bag”. You can get a used 30-30 or lightweight Remington 870 or something similar from the gun barrel at the pawnshop or a garage sale for a reasonable price, mount it under the seat of your pickup truck with a locking system and you’ll still be money ahead compared to the KelTec. And you’ll have a better weapon.

        • Cal S.

          When did I say anything about bugging out with a Sub-2000? Honestly, the S2k would be one of my very last choices for a BOG. That’s my AR-15, baby.

          I still don’t understand your fascination with the .30-30. With the S2k I get 3x the ammo in one magazine, lug around 9″ of less gun, and save myself ~3lbs. Plus, reloading is much, much faster than a lever gun. Granted, there’s a rather large range discrepancy, but it’s not going to be easy to justify self defense past 50-100 yards. I doubt bandits and/or opportunists are that good, either. Remember, I’m talking a camp carbine for personal protection here.

          Wait, tell me how one of the world’s quietest cartridges is going to allow you to signal for help?

        • The idea is that you would be carrying a pistol in a holster, and have a compact carbine in your bag that shares magazines and ammunition. It allows you the option of either hunting or defense out to 100 yards, while still maintaining a low profile.

          In terms of weight and size, which is a huge issue, it is lightyears ahead of pretty much anything else out there for this application. It has a folded length of 16″- a full 10″ shorter than the shortest non-nfa rifle. It weighs 4lbs; a Marlin 30-30 is 38.5″ long and weighs 7lbs.

          Let’s dig a bit deeper. Assuming you have to carry your own water ( a serious issue if you live out west) you have a very finite amount of extra weight you can carry.

          A gallon of water weighs 8.34lbs. For the weight of a gallon of water, you can carry a 4lb Sub2000, 2 33rd Glock 18 magazines (4oz each) and 138 9mm 124gr +p JHP (12.6 grams each = 36 rds per lb.)

          Compared to your suggestions:
          Remington 870 Express Tactical = 7.5lbs. 12 Gauge 00 buck = 9.6 rnds per lb. –> 8.34lbs = 870 Shotgun + 8 rounds.

          Marlin 336C= 7lbs. 30-30 150gr = 21.5 rds per lb. 8.34lbs = Marlin 336c + 28 rounds.

  • iksnilol

    It’s a receiver length shorter when folded than a comparable gun with a folding stock. That has to count for something.

    + it is way more available than a Hotchkiss.

    • Riot

      Yeah but like I said barely shorter, the receiver isn’t long. If it folded the other way and had the grip fold backwards it would be a bit more appealing IMO.

      • iksnilol

        But it is significant. You can see how the receiver+stock and the barrel are about the same length. If it was just a folding stock it would be way longer in its compact form.

        Also, the Hotchkiss while cool isn’t terribly comfortable. Just look at that pistol grip. That and of course folding out the Kel-Tec is way easier than folding out the Hotchkiss contraptioon.

  • myndbender

    I have owned a gen 1 sub2k for years & love it. I can easily fit it, 5 loaded 29 rd Asian Glock mags, & 3-4 boxes of ammo in a small sling pack from Walmart. It can reach out farther & is more accurate than any pistol. Only negative is it’s in .40 cal. I guess this gives me an excuse to get a gen2 in 9mm!

  • pbla4024

    Even more fancy compactness is the French MGD PM-9.

  • Cal S.

    However, it’s still about 3-4 lbs lighter than your average folding rifle. I could carry my KT S2k all day long without even needing a sling.

  • Cal S.

    I’m just hoping that they have made the handguard compatible with the G1. For a lot less than $100, too.

  • Tyler McCommon

    Pretty neat but I can never seem to find any Kel-tec products in the wild. Unless they’re one of their many polymer handguns.

  • JQPub

    Speaking of ‘strange’, I met this chick in the bar last week and…. uh.. yeah, you probably don’t want to hear about that 😉

    Anyway, I love my Sub 2k’s. I don’t pretend they are anything that they are not. I always find it funny how some people get all ‘dislikey’ about them. Yeah, they’re Kel tecs, aint going to be an heirloom piece. There is something to be said for a ‘cheap’ trunk gun though, sitting in a get home bag. If the car gets stolen, I won’t cry a river. And funny how every time I take one to the range, everyone wants to shoot it. I can literally drop rounds into a softball size target at 25 yards as fast as I can pull the trigger. It’s a blast! and I CANNOT wait for the Gen 2! For those of you who can’t find them, I’d say you need to be a little more resourceful in your acquisition methods. Aint no one gonna knock on your door and ask if you want to buy one. Because they are more fun than a barrel of monkeys! I won’t even sell my Gen 1’s after i get a pair of Gen 2’s! You can do so much with them. Try surfing KTOG and see all of the fun variations. Why is having fun make so many people allergic? 🙂 Shoot, the chick from the bar sure didn’t feel that way lol

  • Squirreltakular

    I love my Gen 1, but man am I jealous of that Gen 2.

  • Chey Wilsher

    Hes either a poor shot or the accuracy concerns me. I want want to be able to at least hit a man sized target or a deer at a 100yds in a bug out gun with no problem. I’ve achieved more consistent hits on a target at that range with a stock XD-9…