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Ronald_55

Open and Concealed Carry- How do you do it?

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Not sure if this has been discussed, but just wondering what everyone's prefered setup is for open and/or concealed carry. I am trying to get around to getting my CCW and not sure what I will get to use. Trying to get some input before I just start buying rigs.

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I CC, aiwb, high noon upper cut or N82 Tactical.

CZ 75B or SDP

For deeper aiwb concealment, MK9 in a high noon hidden ally.

5.11 casual or Goodrich and Gould are the two leather gun belts I use, both 1-1/2" width

For deepest concealment, MK9 or Kimber Micro .380 in a pocket holster.

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Either pocket in a Desantis Nemisis or belt in custom leather holsters. 

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Pocket (most all the time anymore), StellarRigs:

Kahr-Stellar-new.jpg

 

Or IWB, TT Gunleather:

tt1.jpg

- OS

 

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Honestly, anymore when I can carry it is almost always my S&W 642 in a pocket holster, front pocket.  In jeans or other pants that have a watch pocket I carry a modified (cut down from six rounds to five) speed strip for a reload.  When I first started carrying I was often all about OWB (I can't stand IWB) of a full or mid-sized handgun with a cover garment.  If carrying a semiauto I would always have at least one spare mag on me, as well and would often carry a small, backup gun in my weak-side pocket.  Several years of carrying have since convinced me that, for me, where I live and my lifestyle all that is too much - and probably borders on silly, to be brutally honest.  With the aforementioned cover garment I (and others, I think) call that 'casually concealed'.  You would be surprised how much you can hide under just an unbuttoned shirt over a t-shirt (more on that below) and, honestly, if you make at least some, real effort to conceal I don't think the average person will even notice.  Of course, other people who carry or someone who assaults/robs/harms other people for 'a living' might notice no matter how hard you try.  Just a couple of tips based on things I, myself, have noticed other people actually doing:

You can hide a lot even under just a loose t-shirt.  However, while those skin-tight, form-fitting t-shirts might show off your muscles and look good to the ladies (depending on whether or not you have the build for them) that Glock on your hip is not at all hidden just by pulling said tight, form-fitting t-shirt over it.  In fact, no kidding, the gun would probably be less noticeable if you didn't even bother to cover it rather than as a huge bulge on your hip, under the shirt, that is waaay too 'gun shaped' to be mistaken for a smart phone.

Secondly, if you are carrying a really large (like roughly Desert Eagle sized) firearm OWB in the SOB position in what appears to be a holster made of very thick material then just pulling your t-shirt, albeit not a form fitting one, down over it does not conceal the gun.

Third, it kind of defeats the purpose to go to all the trouble of carrying that nice Sig in a nice, leather IWB holster in the SOB position if you then take your suit jacket off and don't pay any attention when I pass behind you in the aisle at Walmart at such necessarily close proximity that said nice Sig could very easily be my nice Sig if I were the larcenous sort because at that moment it would be easier for me to access your pistol that it would be for you to access it.

Now as for hiding things under just an unbuttoned, untucked shirt, a guy on another forum was concerned about it so I did this 'extreme' example just to show what is possible.  This was from several years back.  I know because I was still married at the time and my ex-wife took the pictures of me demonstrating the potential of 'casual concealment' - not to mention that I have had two, different phones since the one in the pic and I keep my phones for a relatively long time.  I am still carrying the same wallet, however, and it now looks even more worn out.  Anyhow, shirts with a random pattern/print or things like Hawaiian shirts work really well (not just my opinion but an opinion shared by a lot of others) because they break up the lines and hide potential 'printing' very well.  I did find, however, that a denim shirt works nearly as well - probably because they are fairly thick.  Being a fairly large-framed individual and having a 'tactical gut' possibly adds to the concealment potential of this method, as well.

In these pictures:

Image1.jpg

Image2.jpg

I had all of this on me:

Image5.jpg

The Taurus (four inch .357), keys and flashlight carrier were on my belt.  Everything else was in various pockets.  As I said, this was intended to be an 'extreme' example.  I never, really carried the .357 except around home or when camping - same as with the GP100 I traded it for and my four inch Taurus Tracker .44 Magnum and the same for the mag light in the nylon flashlight holster, for that matter.  I like paddle holsters (like the FOBUS the Taurus was in for the picture) for carry in some situations because they are comfortable.  They provide decent retention for the handgun, itself, depending on the firearm but if using them one must be aware that it is possible to snatch holster and all by sliding the paddle out, especially if the belt isn't a strong belt that is set nice and tight.  I liked them better back when there were more places we couldn't carry (restaurants that served alcohol, etc.) because they were easier to remove to leave the gun in a vehicle and then put back on when returning to the vehicle if it was necessary to enter a criminal protection zone.  Of course the same is true of pocket carry and a gun carried in a pocket holster in a front pants pocket would be a lot harder to snatch.  I don't like the idea of walking around with an empty holster on my belt because to me it kind of feels like a neon sign that reads, "Hey, there is an unattended firearm in my vehicle right now!"

 

 

Edited by JAB

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7 hours ago, McGarrett said:

Sport coat optional.

don-johnson-as-sonny-crockett-holding-a-

Does anyone still actually use shoulder holsters?

I actually think I might like one except for needing a jacket all the time. 

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8 minutes ago, Ronald_55 said:

Does anyone still actually use shoulder holsters?

I actually think I might like one except for needing a jacket all the time. 

I frequently use one for my p229 for car trips.

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Jab

 

Thanks for the insight. Lots of points to take into account. Glad to know that I might be able to classify my gut as "tactical" too. Lol

I think I would hate iwb too, but will need to test one just to be sure. Winter might not be bad, but summer they would probably kill me.

I wear cargo pants almost as a rule and I know how much I can carry. I carry 2 phones (work and home), a Streamlight Stylus Pro light,  a Maxpedition Micro, and my Gerber folder every day and no one is the wiser. I can see how a pocket holster might be ok if I shift my pockets around. I just think I would like something larger than my LCP. Might need to try it out with my PF-9.

Again thanks for the input.

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8 minutes ago, 2.ooohhh said:

I frequently use one for my p229 for car trips.

What Brand do you use?

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Glock 19 Owb, 3:00 position, comp tac kydex paddle holster. Extremely comfortable, moderate concealment.

 

 

 

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25 minutes ago, Ronald_55 said:

..... I can see how a pocket holster might be ok if I shift my pockets around. I just think I would like something larger than my LCP. Might need to try it out with my PF-9.

Heater in pocket holster in post above is Kahr PM 9mm, PF is just enough larger that it might be a bit problematic, dunno.

- OS

Edited by Oh Shoot

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Either my alien gear iwb or my gb leather holster owb.  either way with a tshirt you dont know its there unless i get lazy and let the shirt ride up a bit.  Im only carrying a xds so its not a large gun either.

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17 minutes ago, Ronald_55 said:

What Brand do you use?

Galco Maimi for the shoulder holster, but that's typically only when I'm driving the wife's car or a rental. In mine the holsters mount to the center console. 

 

Clothing and where I'm going most often decide.

In jeans I'm either in a supertuck style with my p229 or p239, or an OWB holster with a cover garment.

In khakis I go to a pocket holster for my p238.

Scrubs a bellyband with the p238.

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11 minutes ago, 2.ooohhh said:

Galco Maimi for the shoulder holster, but that's typically only when I'm driving the wife's car or a rental. In mine the holsters mount to the center console. 

 

Clothing and where I'm going most often decide.

In jeans I'm either in a supertuck style with my p229 or p239, or an OWB holster with a cover garment.

In khakis I go to a pocket holster for my p238.

Scrubs a bellyband with the p238.

Ok.

My family situation might negate a console mount even though my car has a sweet setup for it.

Do they make those belly bands in xxxxL if I decided to use them lol

I may just have to wander into the FFL I use and try a few on that he has in stock. Just not a ton of selection, but Cabela's does not seem to be ok with me just whipping out my gun to test holsters in the aisle.

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15 minutes ago, Ronald_55 said:

Ok.

My family situation might negate a console mount even though my car has a sweet setup for it.

Do they make those belly bands in xxxxL if I decided to use them lol

I may just have to wander into the FFL I use and try a few on that he has in stock. Just not a ton of selection, but Cabela's does not seem to be ok with me just whipping out my gun to test holsters in the aisle.

Honestly, few places will let you try holsters on, and even if they do it' hard to get a appreciation for what will work best for your situation in 5 min standing in a store. That's why many of us have drawers full of old/less used/tried before holsters. I probably bought a dozen over the past decade for my p229 trying to comfortably carry it all the time. I eventually came to realize that as much as I love the way it shoots, and it's capacity it just didn't fit for my everyday carry in some situations. Hence the search for a smaller gun that landed me with the p238. For me it carry's great, shoots really well for it's size, and is sufficient for when I can't carry my preferred p229. Of my officemates that I know carry, one ended up with an LCP to fill the same role the other a p238 after shooting mine. There's no one right answer for everyone, hence the variety in the holster and handgun market place. My best advise is to post up a WTB in the classifieds with the gun you're looking for holsters for(or in the pay it forward thread), I bet there's at least one of us who has one for it in a drawer somewhere already that might just let it go to a potential good new home cheap. 

33301691031_968e26aa76_z.jpg

Holster drawer by Erik, on Flickr

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9 hours ago, 2.ooohhh said:

Honestly, few places will let you try holsters on, and even if they do it' hard to get a appreciation for what will work best for your situation in 5 min standing in a store. That's why many of us have drawers full of old/less used/tried before holsters. I probably bought a dozen over the past decade for my p229 trying to comfortably carry it all the time. I eventually came to realize that as much as I love the way it shoots, and it's capacity it just didn't fit for my everyday carry in some situations. Hence the search for a smaller gun that landed me with the p238. For me it carry's great, shoots really well for it's size, and is sufficient for when I can't carry my preferred p229. Of my officemates that I know carry, one ended up with an LCP to fill the same role the other a p238 after shooting mine. There's no one right answer for everyone, hence the variety in the holster and handgun market place. My best advise is to post up a WTB in the classifieds with the gun you're looking for holsters for(or in the pay it forward thread), I bet there's at least one of us who has one for it in a drawer somewhere already that might just let it go to a potential good new home cheap. 

33301691031_968e26aa76_z.jpg

Holster drawer by Erik, on Flickr

Nice collection. lol

Thanks for the help. I may see about the WTB ad. I only have a holster for one of my guns and it is not a standard carry item unless you are a LEO from the 1930-40's. 

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16 hours ago, Ronald_55 said:

Jab

 

Thanks for the insight. Lots of points to take into account. Glad to know that I might be able to classify my gut as "tactical" too. Lol

I think I would hate iwb too, but will need to test one just to be sure. Winter might not be bad, but summer they would probably kill me.

I wear cargo pants almost as a rule and I know how much I can carry. I carry 2 phones (work and home), a Streamlight Stylus Pro light,  a Maxpedition Micro, and my Gerber folder every day and no one is the wiser. I can see how a pocket holster might be ok if I shift my pockets around. I just think I would like something larger than my LCP. Might need to try it out with my PF-9.

Again thanks for the input.

The closest thing to 'IWB' I can do is carrying my P3AT (because it is really flat and thin) in a belly band worn very low, around my hips, so that the grips stick up just above the waist of my pants in a similar manner as an IWB holster.  I wear the pistol at about 3:00 (I am right handed) and the band I use has a place for a spare mag beside the pistol.  I really only use that for things like weddings, funerals and so on, though and it still isn't high on my list as a carry method.  As for the size/fit, as I said I wear mine slung low, not really around my 'belly' but more at the waistband of my pants.  I wear a size 44 pants and the one I have fits fine.  I bought mine at one of the RK shows at the Expo Center in Knoxville.  There are usually a few folks selling such things but this guy was talking about the quality and strength of materials used in the ones he sells/sold (this was several years ago) and I don't think he was just tossing out b.s. to make a sale.  I have another belly band that I don't like as well (don't even remember where I got it) and the nylon and elastic on the one that I bought at the show really do feel thicker/stronger than the other one, the 'holster' part hasn't gotten stretched out and the stitching is better, IMO.  I got the feeling that his business actually makes them (as in maybe his wife sews them together, etc.) but can't swear to that.  Unfortunately I couldn't begin to tell you the name of the business.

I haven't seen a PF-9 for sale in years.  For a long time I thought I might like to have one to try for pocket carry in larger pockets (like cargo pants) but for now I am satisfied with the 642 or (rarely) the P3AT in that role.  I used to have a P-11 but it was just too big for pocket carry.  Basically, I ended up carrying it OWB but traded it off when I realized I could carry a Ruger P95 - with a higher capacity and which I can shoot much better - just as well in the same position with the same type of cover garment.

I made a home-made hybrid holster - leather back with formed thermoplastic attached to it to retain the pistol.  It was made to fit my CZ 82 which, while not the thinnest profile isn't super thick, either.  I hated it (the holster, that is - I really like the pistol.)  That said, I have read opinions from folks who love those type of holsters and who say that using a hybrid holster is the only way that they can carry IWB (which is what made me want to try one in the first place.)

As for shoulder holsters, I have one but not for carry in 'social situations'.  I have a simple nylon rig for my Super Blackhawk 7.5 inch .44 Mag.  I thought it might be okay for use around the woods at home, hunting and the like but this is where the large frame (mine, not the gun's) becomes a disadvantage.  My chest (it isn't my 'tactical gut', honest - well, maybe a little but mostly my chest) is so relatively wide that I find it difficult to draw the SBH from it.  It would probably be easier if the holster had more of a forward cant instead of pointing the muzzle straight down but then you have the issue of basically 'muzzling' anyone who is standing behind you.  I have decided that a Chesty Puller rig would work much better for me for the intended application.  I haven't had a chance to try a Chesty Puller out, yet, but such a rig would probably work well with a smaller/shorter barreled gun while driving and might even work (depending on the firearm and the rig) for somewhat concealed carry with the right cover garment, I don't know.  I think a shoulder holster rig is just something a person has to try out for themselves and I think they would be a viable option for the right person.  John Wesley Harding liked them, after all.  I have read good things about the Galco version, I think.

I have also ankle carried, rarely.  I have found that, while a j-frame is supposed to be the perfect 'ankle gun', the flat and light P3AT works best in that mode for me.  Ankle carry is another method that can be good if you are going to be riding/driving in a car a lot as it is pretty easy to access in that situation.  It can be difficult to access in other positions, though as well as difficult/impossible to access quickly or subtly unless you are sitting down.  Outside those, specific situations I think ankle carry works best when you have no, other option or maybe when you are carrying a backup pistol.  Drawing from a sitting position is the one, major drawback I see in pocket carry.  For the most part, if I am pocket carrying I more or less ain't going to be able to effectively draw the gun while sitting down and especially not while sitting behind the wheel of a vehicle.

Edited by JAB

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Mouse gun in pocket holster, back pocket. Seldom do open carry but when I do it is a paddle holster at 3 o'clock with G19 usually with an over shirt so it is semi concealed.

Thinking of looking into a ankle holster.

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Right now I carry my G42 in an ankle holster from "The Holster Store" I think it's called. I'm in a wheelchair and have found this is the easiest place to carry for me. I will be switching to a small revolver in a few days and may try a different location. It's not to bad taking the holster off and putting it back on, when I go to my doctors, as it attaches with Velcro. It is highly visible in the summer months as I wear shorts. I'm not to worried about concealed carry as I don't really go anywhere much other than my friends houses or the gun stores. The only time I go to town really is to my doctors.

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I was at the Flea Market (near Exit 407 of I-40) a week or so ago. Ran into a stand selling mostly Belts, billfolds, and saw some Belly Bags and what I call a Holster (not like a holster as you think, can see on web site Smart Carry as an example).

The Holster "thingy" is best seen on internet as "Smart Carry" (a brand), The one at the Flea market was $5.99. Don't laugh when you see it - it works and is pretty comfortable. I tested it around the house for a day. .

Belly Bag (my choice for like $14.99 at Flea Market) looks like any other belly bag. It has a place for cell phone in front compartment, a place for bill folds (I use two for cards and a little cash) in second compartment, another compartment for "whatever - whatever could be extra magazine  :-)". All those are zippered compartments.

FINALLY, the main compartment against your body is  for a weapon (to give you an idea of size -  a Taurus Millennium G2  12 rounds +1 fits and is not too heavy).

That compartment is unique --- it opens via Velcro Closures on top and both sides. So, you can lay a pistol in there and quick draw (not as quick as some holsters of course) by grabbing corner of the bag and pull the whole thing open -- takes a little practice to be opening with left hand and and get your right hand on the grip (I am right handed -- so that would be opposite process for a left handed person).

Other advantages --- you have a place for phone, billfolds, and the "whatever" vs pockets for all that. It is comfortable in a car (seat belt goes under the bag and it helps keep the seat belt where it belongs down near your hips). I have used it when riding a bicycle. You could use it on a MC also. However, I don't like the idea of a gun on me on a MC because of risk of accident and the gun between you and a solid object like the street  (so, I keep it in the tank bag or saddle bag).  

I have not been able to find that are a similar Belly Bag on the Internet. Guess I should make a picture of it. 

 

DSCN0937.JPG

Edited by PAULSHOOT
add picture

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