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TGO David

Printing Doesn't Matter - Until It Does

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I found this article online and thought it was excellent.  Worth sharing here.

Source: http://bfelabs.net/printing-doesnt-matter/

 

Quote

The most common arguments made in favor of ignoring printing are that either “no one will notice it” or “no one will recognize what it is”. This is most often based on the experience, among people who are lax about printing, of not having anyone call them out for carrying a gun.

[...]

The next argument from the “it doesn’t matter” crowd isn’t that no one notices, it’s that it isn’t important if others see a bulge because they don’t know what it is. This may have some value, but I tend to think that even if they can’t identify it, the bulge can still matter.

[...]

The final, but by no means least important, consideration is the observation of your mohaska by the criminal element. A lot of folks blow this off, and ask “when did a thug ever even see a quality concealment holster?”, but that’s the wrong question. The right question is, “what do I lose if I’m identified as carrying a gun, by a criminal actor?”

[...]

Printing doesn’t matter. Until it does. And when it does, you’re going to have a lot on the line. Romantic success, the potential loss of income or career, or the potential of injury or death at the hands of someone who knew you were carrying and didn’t care except to come at you harder because of it. 

 

This really goes back to the fundamental reason that I have been so vocally supportive of concealed carry and against open carry.  I believe that open carry has a very narrow lane within which it has practical purpose or benefit, whereas concealment has a much wider range of benefits.

Realizing that this can become a somewhat religious debate, particularly with those people who advocate open carry as some sort of talisman that wards off evil doers or who use the visibility of their handgun as a sort of well-intentioned but misguided Pro-2A political statement, I would encourage you to read the article that I linked at the start of this post and then respond if you feel led to do so.

As a note, I realize that some folks simply cannot conceal-carry for physical reasons.  That's a different animal and is one of the few reasons why I am glad that Tennessee does not force concealment.  I still hope that those people use some sort of garment or bag or other cover method to hide or obscure their firearm to maintain a tactical advantage.

Anyway, have fun reading.

 

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Thanks for posting that article.  I always check for printing before I leave the house but complacency sometimes an overcome discipline. 

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I became a Police Officer in the city I was raised in. I thought I knew the city and the people in it; I was naive. One of the most surprising things I learned from being a Police Officer was just how mean some people can be, and that thugs (and drunks) don’t care about authority, guns, or jail. I have been attacked while in full uniform carrying a gun, mace, and baton; it didn’t matter to some people. We didn’t have a lot of gang bangers when I was a cop and they weren’t the ruthless thugs they are today.

That is why I don’t open carry and try not to print. Another reason is that I don’t want to have to worry about interrogating the entrance of a building looking for signs. I also don’t want to be the guy walking into an armed robbery and identified as a threat.

However, I think most people have made up their mind of the issue. Some of those new to carry are looking for advice though and it’s good to discuss this issue every once in awhile. Open carry or printing can be a bad tactical decision depending on where you are. Open carry for political reason is just well.... a political argument.

 BTW... when I was young with a big chest and a thin waistline concealing was very easy. I could conceal a 6” Revolver or a full size 1911 with ease. When you get older and the chest and waist start moving towards the same size; it gets much harder.

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I'm a small, skinny guy. This makes concealed carry more difficult in the summer, but it's still relatively easy with the right choice of handgun and clothing. I made a pocket holster out of a one-gallon water jug for my Kahr PM9. I keep a truck gun in a Brave Response "bellyband" holster.  The Brave Response holster is more comfortable than a wider bellyband. Plus, I can wear it under workout gear without a belt, which is a big plus for me.

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1 hour ago, DaveTN said:

I became a Police Officer in the city I was raised in. I thought I knew the city and the people in it; I was naive. One of the most surprising things I learned from being a Police Officer was just how mean some people can be, and that thugs (and drunks) don’t care about authority, guns, or jail. I have been attacked while in full uniform carrying a gun, mace, and baton; it didn’t matter to some people. We didn’t have a lot of gang bangers when I was a cop and they weren’t the ruthless thugs they are today.

That is why I don’t open carry and try not to print. Another reason is that I don’t want to have to worry about interrogating the entrance of a building looking for signs. I also don’t want to be the guy walking into an armed robbery and identified as a threat.

However, I think most people have made up their mind of the issue. Some of those new to carry are looking for advice though and it’s good to discuss this issue every once in awhile. Open carry or printing can be a bad tactical decision depending on where you are. Open carry for political reason is just well.... a political argument.

 BTW... when I was young with a big chest and a thin waistline concealing was very easy. I could conceal a 6” Revolver or a full size 1911 with ease. When you get older and the chest and waist start moving towards the same size; it gets much harder.

Amen, brother.

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When I go out I am always carrying concealed and I do go out of my way to wear clothes that prevent printing. My son in law carries also comcealed but he is not as concerned about printing as I am. I was over at my daughters house one day and I got up out of a chair to go in the kitchen and he said "Gosh your not packing. I thought you never went out without one of your guns. I turned and raise my shirt and he said damn, I could not tell you had anything". Now he goes out of his way to make sure at every opportunity he can carry without printing. He bought a new holster like mine and bought some new clothing to help. I don't want anyone but me to know I am armed if at all possible............JMHO

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Meh. 

 

 I still believe most people have no clue what's going on around them. I also don't believe in carrying the little single stacks or mouse guns everyone loves. I can carry my 19X inside the waistband appendix carry pretty well. I will say you can see the mag sticking out sometimes if I am wearing a tighter Polo but I usually dress to carry so that's not a problem to often. 

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The longer I carry the more deeply I move into the “concealed means concealed” camp. It’s all about risk aversion for me. 

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I feel like I need to get a "Bill Paxton as Virgil Earp" avatar to participate on this thread.  :)

I'm squarely in the camp of keeping it hidden as best I can. I'm glad though that we don't have to in TN so it's not something I really worry about a whole lot. I found a rig that works for me and now I "set it and forget it". The key is finding the gun, holster, and belt that works best for you.

I'm thin(ish) so I've given up on concealing a double-stack anything except in winter when I can wear a jacket. I've tried multiple holsters and belts and double-stacks just don't work for me because of their thickness and weight. My medical condition known as noassatall means heavier guns tend to pull on my pants, even with a good gun belt. A Kahr PM9 or M&P Shield in a thin holster works well for me, especially if I can set the depth real low. Currently I'm using Remora holsters. I can keep them riding real low and the clipless design makes it easy to take the gun off and on without unhosltering or fumbling with clips. I've tried Remora holsters with larger (ie. Glock G26) guns and they don't work as well for me. With my build, anything more than the light single-stacks means I need a gun belt and clip holster and even then it's iffy. With the single-stacks I can use pretty much any belt I want and don't have to use a gun belt to prevent a sagging waist band. The gun belts are fine most of the time, but sometimes they're just not the look I'm going for.

 

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15 minutes ago, XxthejuicexX said:

Meh. 

 

 I still believe most people have no clue what's going on around them. I also don't believe in carrying the little single stacks or mouse guns everyone loves. I can carry my 19X inside the waistband appendix carry pretty well. I will say you can see the mag sticking out sometimes if I am wearing a tighter Polo but I usually dress to carry so that's not a problem to often. 

The day I was at my duaghters I had my double stack model 85 on me and it is not a small gun. It is a little harder to conceal than my Bersa Thunders but not to much with a little more effort...........JMHO 

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36 minutes ago, monkeylizard said:

I feel like I need to get a "Bill Paxton as Virgil Earp" avatar to participate on this thread.  :)

I'm squarely in the camp of keeping it hidden as best I can. I'm glad though that we don't have to in TN so it's not something I really worry about a whole lot. I found a rig that works for me and now I "set it and forget it". The key is finding the gun, holster, and belt that works best for you.

I'm thin(ish) so I've given up on concealing a double-stack anything except in winter when I can wear a jacket. I've tried multiple holsters and belts and double-stacks just don't work for me because of their thickness and weight. My medical condition known as noassatall means heavier guns tend to pull on my pants, even with a good gun belt. A Kahr PM9 or M&P Shield in a thin holster works well for me, especially if I can set the depth real low. Currently I'm using Remora holsters. I can keep them riding real low and the clipless design makes it easy to take the gun off and on without unhosltering or fumbling with clips. I've tried Remora holsters with larger (ie. Glock G26) guns and they don't work as well for me. With my build, anything more than the light single-stacks means I need a gun belt and clip holster and even then it's iffy. With the single-stacks I can use pretty much any belt I want and don't have to use a gun belt to prevent a sagging waist band. The gun belts are fine most of the time, but sometimes they're just not the look I'm going for.

 

I have that same medical condition!  To overcome it, I use a good stiff belt and a pair of good suspenders.  I wear these over my T-shirt but under my outside shirt unless Im wearing a tucked in shirt and a jacket.  Not optimum, but I’ve found I can carry without printing.  This works very well with a small subcompact like the Sig P-365.

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I know I am a little old fashion when it comes to holsters but the one I use 99% of the time is a Tagua Made in Paraguay. It was one of the first holsters I bought many years ago and it still works today very well for me. I seldom if ever dress up so I am normally dressed casually. Blue Jeans, Cut off Blue jeans, T-shirt and if I am going out I throw a darkish dress type light shirt over the top and seldom button it. I have tried a few of the retention type holsters and IWB holsters and just ca't find anything that is comfortable for me. My Model 85 and Thunder both fit this holster very good and with the Thunder I carry 2 extra magazines on my left side in a cell phone case. It just works for me..........JMHO

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I find myself noticing people are carrying (or assume such) by their body giveaways as often as I realize they're printing.  Tugging your pants up, favoring one side, and being very deliberate on how you get your wallet from a back pocket are all signs if you're looking for them.  The first two are correctable by a good holster and belt, which I think is only common knowledge for those who aren't casual carriers (ie: a lot of TGO'ers), but the third is more or less unavoidable as a measure to help prevent exposing your carry gun if your front pockets are full keys in one side, and a mobile phone in the other.  I know I do that because I have a VP9 in an IWB holster that leaves the grip above the belt line clear as day.

That said, I doubt an significant number of people are observant enough to be looking.  Printing really is on a scale, and as long as you're in the lower quartile, you'll be good to go in the general public, I think. 

 

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The dead give away for me are the guys dressed in various shades of tan and olive drab. Especially cargo pants/shorts, 5.11 shirt, and a fishing vest when it's a bajillion degrees outside. I just assume anyone dressed like John Goodman in The Big Lebowski is carrying.

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28 minutes ago, monkeylizard said:

The dead give away for me are the guys dressed in various shades of tan and olive drab. Especially cargo pants/shorts, 5.11 shirt, and a fishing vest when it's a bajillion degrees outside. I just assume anyone dressed like John Goodman in The Big Lebowski is carrying.

I just wear digital camo everywhere I go. 

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In all honesty I didn't think much about printing 10 years ago but as I became more aware about it I actually went and bought a full length mirror and put it on the back of my bedroom door so I could see if I am printing when I go out these days. Like I said, when I am out in public the only one I want knowing I am packing is me..........JMHO 

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Wintertime, no problem. Summertime, not so much. I have never found a solution and have quit worrying about it for the most part. If I knew how to fix it I would. Most of the time I carry a M&P compact under a t shirt pulled up against my side and sweat all over it. It prints bad but I can,t say people know it,s a gun. Even when I carry a Kel Tec PF9 it still prints but not near as bad as the M&P. Maybe it,s my build, I don't know. I've never tried IWB but don't think it's for me and don't want to have two different sizes of pants. I'm watching this to see what others do.

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6 hours ago, Chucktshoes said:

The longer I carry the more deeply I move into the “concealed means concealed” camp. It’s all about risk aversion for me. 

Risk Aversion is a good way to describe it.  For me, I will add that it also is aversion to having to talk about it with someone.  As much as I enjoy chatting with you all about guns here, I have a general dislike for unwanted social interaction and absolutely don't want to have to discuss the presence of my firearm with some random individual at the local grocery.

The older I get, the more I prefer my circle to consist of my immediate family, our dogs and maybe a few people who aren't related to me.  :)

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1 hour ago, TGO David said:

Risk Aversion is a good way to describe it.  For me, I will add that it also is aversion to having to talk about it with someone.  As much as I enjoy chatting with you all about guns here, I have a general dislike for unwanted social interaction and absolutely don't want to have to discuss the presence of my firearm with some random individual at the local grocery.

The older I get, the more I prefer my circle to consist of my immediate family, our dogs and maybe a few people who aren't related to me.  :)

I have that same feeling David. That is why I go to a little extreme to prevent it. I do have a few friends that are not as extreme as I am and they have actually had people ask them if they are a police officer or detective cause they are packing a gun. I often wonder if people are not asking to get shot.

What happens if the guy they ask is a criminal getting ready to comit a crime or just committted one or the law is looking for them and someone is stupid enough to ask them about their firearm...........JMHO

Edited by bersaguy

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Being overtly paranoid draws the attention of others. If carrying is a burden perhaps it's  not for everyone.

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29 minutes ago, Raoul said:

Being overtly paranoid draws the attention of others. If carrying is a burden perhaps it's  not for everyone.

Well I have been around firearms since I was 6 so no paranoia here!

 

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Very good article. BFE, iirc, is Morgan Atwood's company. He frequently collaborates with Ian Wendt who has/had Special Circumstances (knife maker). These are solid, knowledgeable guys that bring a lot to the table of the self defense training community.

The article is excellent and is worth reading more than once in my humble opinion.

I've carried (legally) concealed for about 30 years now. I'm an old fart, 5'9" and 180 #'s. I'm either in scrubs or wearing a tee shirt and jeans or a short sleeve shirt. I manage to carry a Glock 17 or 19, extra mag, knife, and flashlight. To my knowledge I've never been "made". To Morgan's point, maybe nobody has ever mentioned the fact... but I've been around a metric buttload of cops in social and training environments. And a lot of non-gun folks and even, dare I say it? antigun folks in various situations (NPE) circumstances.

Properly fitting  clothing and quality gear make all the difference in the world.

I'm going to link a vid...I hope...I "borrowed" from P-F posted by Craig Douglas aka "SouthNarc", head of what has become know as the "Shivworks Collective". I know Craig from back home in South MS and was blessed to train a bunch with him before he even started his now very well know ECQC classes.

Be warned there is adult language in the vid. This is not a "gear advertisement" vid, though Craig is demonstrating particular gear. And no, that is not Craig's daily rollout of gear...he's making a point...but some very good points imho.

The vid is about 20 minutes in length...a small investment in time for the knowledge gained...I promise. I do admit my bias, as I hold Craig in high esteem.


https://www.facebook.com/video/embed?video_id=1817757491621065

 

 

 

Edited by prag
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11 hours ago, TGO David said:

Risk Aversion is a good way to describe it.  For me, I will add that it also is aversion to having to talk about it with someone.  As much as I enjoy chatting with you all about guns here, I have a general dislike for unwanted social interaction and absolutely don't want to have to discuss the presence of my firearm with some random individual at the local grocery.

The older I get, the more I prefer my circle to consist of my immediate family, our dogs and maybe a few people who aren't related to me.  :)

I feel exactly the same way. I'm not anti-social....well maybe a little...but my circle of friends has dwindled by choice over the years from a group of friends to a select few very good friends....actual people that can count on each other. The older I get the less time or energy I have to deal with the politically correct soy boy mentality the better. After all...I'm trying to lead a stress free life. My two dogs make me laugh every single day.

And while I appreciate the right to carry either open or concealed I feel it's no ones business if I'm carrying or not so I do go the extra mile to keep it that way.

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12 hours ago, TGO David said:

Risk Aversion is a good way to describe it.  For me, I will add that it also is aversion to having to talk about it with someone.  As much as I enjoy chatting with you all about guns here, I have a general dislike for unwanted social interaction and absolutely don't want to have to discuss the presence of my firearm with some random individual at the local grocery.

The older I get, the more I prefer my circle to consist of my immediate family, our dogs and maybe a few people who aren't related to me.  :)

Thank you! I feel the same way. I have many friends that I never see. It's not because I am anti-social but because I don't have enough time between work and family. I have a cadre of close friends that I would and have, risked my life for and they did the same for me. I have never done Faceplant, snapback or Twittler. I do "TELEPHONE." and face to face. 

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I normally make sure I am very concealed but one hectic Sunday morning of getting the six kids and my wife to church, I completely forgot to tuck my gun when I tucked my shirt, leaving me open carrying without realizing it.  It wasn’t until I went to go in a store afterwards that my wife noticed and asked if I wanted to tuck it.  Funny things is I talked to several people including a police officer after the service and not one person mentioned anything about it.   First time ever open carrying.  Doh!

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