Appendix Carry -- which holster do you use and why?


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pax
August 1, 2007, 10:45 AM
If you ever appendix carry, which holster do you use?

What features were important to you in shopping for a holster?

And why did you choose the one you chose?

pax

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Omaney
August 1, 2007, 11:38 AM
I use an Uncle Mikes IWB. It is pretty soft and covers any sharp edges on my Bersa Thunder 380 (the only pistol I carry appendix). My dunlop disease is perfect for concealing this pistol...:rolleyes:

jlbraun
August 1, 2007, 12:03 PM
I actually use an Uncle Mike's Sidekick that I cut all the extra parts off of.

I carry a CZ P01.

pax
August 1, 2007, 12:12 PM
jlbraun ~

Which parts did you cut off, and why did you cut them off?

pax

V-fib
August 1, 2007, 12:59 PM
i like the FIST k-8 kydex. iwb. I use it with my 642. It tuckable and the cant can be adjusted. I went with the keychain option. It's really comfortable hardly know its there.

Link: http://www.fist-inc.com/holsters/k1/K8.htm

:cool:

jlbraun
August 1, 2007, 01:37 PM
I started with this:
http://www.kitterytradingpost.com/getdata.php/image_id/11933

And cut off the retention strap, mag pouch, and turned it into something like this:
http://images.outdoorinteractive.net/mgen/289735_d.jpg?is=300,300,0xffffff&cvt=jpg

I really like the metal clip design, because you can pull out on the clip and put it over your belt without having to thread your belt through it. I don't like the idea of nylon clips.

Old Dog
August 1, 2007, 01:52 PM
Have a little Bianchi "Professional" size 100 IWB for a Beretta Tomcat.

Suede back (helps keep holster/gun from moving too much), metal clip, body side goes up high enough to prevent pistol from gouging flesh ... Both my wife and I have used this holster; goes on/in quickly, easily removed ... Good, thick leather but a thin overall holster and can be used in about any carry position but is well-suited for appendix carry.

Wife also has the same holster (larger size) for the PPK/S.

Much prefer the leather over nylon, as it protects body better from gun edges; prefer leather over kydex as it bends a little and will "mold" better to the body.

HiWayMan
August 1, 2007, 04:03 PM
I carry a Smith 49 AIWB. I use a Hip-Grip and a thin leather rough side out pocket holster. The holster is only there to keep my super freak corrosive sweat off the bluing. I like how the Hip-Grip places the gun deep enough that my gut can cover the grip so all I need is a tucked in T-shirt for concealment.

I made a tuckable rig for my wife's PPK/S that works very well for her. Perhaps I'll post pics of it later.

jlbraun
August 1, 2007, 04:09 PM
Even though I like mine, I really wish that holstermakers would get around to making a 30 degree muzzle forward IWB holster. I can't find one.

Guitargod1985
August 2, 2007, 03:07 AM
I, too, carry an Uncle Mike's IWB for appendix carry. The only thing I carry like that is my Taurus 605. The USPc or XD are way too uncomfortable in that area.

Trebor
August 2, 2007, 03:35 AM
I've found that a clip-on holster works best for me for appendix carry. I've also found that gun size, especially barrel length, is more critical with appendix carry then behind the hip carry.

I currently carry a S&W Model 65 (K-Frame) with a 3" barrel in an Alessi Talon holster. The holster clips to my pants and the belt goes over the clip.

Before that, my previous carry gun was an EG Makarov carried in the same location in a "generic small auto" clip-on holster I bought from Makarov.com.

The Smith conceals well and is very comfortable. The Makarov is even more comfortable and concealable, due to it's thinner profile. While I can carry the Smith comfortably all day, I do know it's there. With the Mak I could literally forget I had the gun on, it was that comfortable.

rantingredneck
August 2, 2007, 04:31 AM
I carry my P345 or P90 in a Bianchi Minimalist OWB under an untucked shirt.

Trebor
August 2, 2007, 04:06 PM
I didn't answer some of your questions on features, etc.

Here's what I want for a holster for appendix carry:

Clip-on (Needs a good clip)

NOT fabric or nylon. It must have some rigidily, but still move a bit with my body. The Alessi is boned leather and the "generic" seems to be "fake" leather or something similiar. Hard kydex is right out.

Zero cant

Small/thin for small to medium size guns

Sweat guard on the side that goes against my body

It needs to have decent retention from a snug fit. The Alessi actually holds the gun a bit *too* snug, even after break-in. I'm going to find something to slick the inside up a bit. The "generic" was a little loose with the Makarov, but I never had any problems with the gun falling out in normal life. Now, if I was going to be running and jumping or rolling around on the ground fighting with someone, I would have been a little worried about the generic retaining the gun. I'm not a cop though, so those activies are not in my normal life.

No thumb break.

I picked the "generic" for the Makarov because it was cheap and quickly available. I always planned to replace it was a "better" holster, but it actually worked quite well and I was quite happy with it for all the time I carried that gun. I still use it as a "spare" carry piece from time-to-time if the S&W is dirty from a range trip or something.

I bought the Alessi Talon after a lot of research into appendix carry. It's a very high quality holster with a lifetime guarantee. It's worked quite well as well and I think it would work even better with a small auto as opposed to a revolver. The cylinder bulge does make the gun a bit more noticable to me when I'm carrying it.

The Lone Haranguer
August 2, 2007, 04:33 PM
I did occasionally carry appendix with a Glock 19 and a Don Hume H715 (a clip retention, vertical carry leather IWB) holster. It was OK when standing and walking and very accessible on the draw, but very uncomfortable when sitting or driving, as the muzzle annoyingly poked me in the inner thigh. Perhaps this might have been more comfortable with a shorter-barreled gun. But other problems encountered when sitting/driving were the muzzle pointing at my femoral artery:eek: and the lap part of my seat belt lying across it, increasing the risk of injury in an accident. I've pretty much rejected it now.

Golddog
August 2, 2007, 08:56 PM
Appendix carry has never worked for me, even with J snubs and a Kahr. The barrels always nail my leg while I'm walking.

Trebor
August 2, 2007, 10:20 PM
It was OK when standing and walking and very accessible on the draw, but very uncomfortable when sitting or driving, as the muzzle annoyingly poked me in the inner thigh. Perhaps this might have been more comfortable with a shorter-barreled gun.

Yeah, barrel length is *critical* with appendix carry, at least in my experience.

The shorter barrel guns tend to get "pushed aside" by my leg as I move so the barrel doesn't actually pont at my leg. I tried it with a longer barreled gun and the barrel got "hung up" on my thight and it was pointing at my leg and digging in uncomfrotably.

You also need to experiment a bit with the specific holster location to find the "sweet spot" where the gun is comfortable, concealed, and doesn't tend to point at your leg/thigh. Just a difference of an inch or two either way makes a difference.

Bob
August 4, 2007, 06:49 PM
I made my own using leather with the rough side out. High enough to cover the hammer and wet moulded to the gun (SP-101). Then I positioned it where it felt good and marked it using my belt as a guide and sewed on the belt loop (uses a snap so I don't have to thread it through the belt. As stated in a previous response, dunlap's disease helps in keeping the little stinker concealed. I find I carry more either this way, or in the front pants pocket (Mika's holster - it's fantastic!) rather than behind the hip.
Bob

Lonestar49
August 4, 2007, 07:58 PM
Quote: I started with this:

And cut off the retention strap, mag pouch, and turned it into something like this:
---------
...

Same holster here, but there was no need to "cut off" the retention straps, as both straps are velcro'd in, and come out with the pry-bar they supply with the holster, so you can change the straps height, or in my case, I switched both straps, putting the thumbstrap disconnect to the/my outside.

IIRC, you can also take out the metal clip and reverse it to the other side as well, making it work for either a lefty or righty, shooter.

The mag pouch adds no room, as it simply collapses if not in use. But, if you like the finished product/holster, needlessly cut away, that's what counts..


LS

pax
August 11, 2007, 11:17 PM
Answering my own questions.

Today, I ordered a new holster from FIST (http://www.fist-inc.com). It's a K8 style (http://www.fist-inc.com/holsters/k1/K8.htm).

The features that were important to me:

1) It had to be tuckable. After 7+ years of doing this, I still do not know how anyone can regularly carry in the appendix position without being able to tuck the shirt in over the firearm for good concealment.

2) Of course, since I insist on a tuckable design, it has to be IWB. Since it is an IWB, I really really wanted something with a bit more padding on the back than a standard kydex holster. I wanted more comfort than kydex could supply, and I wanted a bit more structural strength than kydex usually provides. But I also wanted that wonderful kydex snick sound when I holstered, the sound that means the gun is firmly and reliably in place -- and that meant I wanted kydex. And I also wanted the smooth draw of kydex. Hmmmmm. Conflicting desires there, I guess. But guess what? The FIST company is making what they call a hybrid holster (http://www.fist-inc.com/hybrid.htm), with leather on the outside and kydex on the inside of the holster. The comfort of leather on the outside, plus the smoothness and security of kydex on the inside -- I'll take that!

3) It had to have a muzzle-forward cant. This was important to me for comfort's sake and also for ease of concealment. The K8 design did not appear to have as much muzzle-forward cant as I wanted, so I asked the designer if he could add a bit more cant. He said he could. (Hey, there's a tip there, friends: holster makers are usually pretty willing to work with you to get you what you need. If you don't see what you need on the website, but do see something pretty close, ask if it's possible to alter the design a little to make it perfect-for-you. Worst they can do is tell you no.) It is difficult enough to find a holster with a neutral cant (straight drop) and nearly impossible to find a muzzle forward design, so I'm pretty jazzed about that issue.

4) It had to ride fairly low on the belt, for good concealment. It's difficult enough to find a solid appendix carry design, and then a lot of holster makers create appendix holsters which ride far too high on the belt for my body type. High ride holsters can (not necessarily do) have a stability issue anyway, and when you put a higher riding holster into the appendix spot that issue is absolutely magnified. So my need for a lower-riding holster was a fairly significant issue that scratched a couple of otherwise suitable designs right off the list.

5) The interchangeable belt loops for the K8 were a nice touch. I wasn't specifically looking for a lot of loop options, but as soon as I saw them, I knew that I wanted more than one type, so that I could have a choice of which to wear depending upon my outer clothing. I'm especially thrilled to be able to order loops for belts of different widths, so that I can use the same comfortable-familiar holster with both my dress belt and my range belt.

The basic holster was $65, plus another $40 because I wanted it in the kydex/leather hybrid style. One style of loop comes with the holster and I chose a couple of others for $5 apiece. So I'm hoping that I really, really love this holster when I finally hold it in my hands. I think I will; I had to look long and hard for a holster that fit my (rather precise and finicky and picky) needs and by some minor miracle, this one has all the features I was looking for.

pax

The Lone Haranguer
August 11, 2007, 11:29 PM
That looks interesting. One observation (which may not apply to you or your choice of gun): there appears to be very little room to slide your second finger under the trigger guard for a full grasp on the gun butt, something I pretty much insist on.

pax
August 11, 2007, 11:43 PM
Lone Haranguer ~

For me, reliable concealment trumps speed of draw.

pax

V-fib
August 12, 2007, 01:16 AM
Pax,
umm...your welcome. Glad I could help. :cool:

pax
August 12, 2007, 10:47 AM
V-fib ~

:o

Ummmm, thanks.

(And yep, you're right -- it was your link that I followed to begin with. Couple folks on another forum suggested it too, and now there's egg on my face because I really did mean to start the post above with a 'thank you' to everyone who answered my first post and especially to all who suggested that particular holster. *sigh*)

pax

Ala Dan
August 12, 2007, 10:54 AM
Smith & Wesson J-frame snubby .38 Special in a 37 year old John Bianchi
Leather IWB~! :cool::D

Shadan7
August 14, 2007, 12:36 AM
..I do so with a Smartcarry rig. I like the flexibility it offers - you don't have to use it just as it was designed, but rather it'll work fine as a free-standing holster & belt combo, up to and including as a tight-to-the-body shoulder rig. Mine is made for small autos (and I carry my Rohrbaugh in it), and can be positioned so that it works great as an IWB, with the butt of the gun just behind my belt.

7

Rustynuts
August 14, 2007, 08:25 PM
Just ordered one of these from Comp-Tac. Look pretty good for my Kel Tec. Also got a Minotaur for my XD SubC!

http://www.comp-tac.com/catalog/product_info.php?cPath=28&products_id=89

crebralfix
August 16, 2007, 10:16 PM
I use mine! I built it to my specifications because I couldn't find one that was comfortable for AIWB. I place the loop on a spine that rides over the top of the slide to reduce overall thickness by at least 1/4 inch. I got sick of having to buy two holsters just to practice draws with both hands, so I made it totally ambidextrous. The kydex covers everything but the grip to keep rust away. It's adjustable vertically to accommodate all body types. The belt loop is adjustable for 1.25, 1.5, and 1.75 inch wide belts.

http://i73.photobucket.com/albums/i236/crebralfix/G26-slide/g26w26-slide-angle.jpg
Glock 26 AIWB Holster -- slide version.

One concern of mine with the design was reholstering. Though it's not that important on the street, it is important on the range and in class. It turns out the holster pops up just a bit...such that the angle for reholstering is perfect. It takes a bit to get used to, but it works nicely.

http://i73.photobucket.com/albums/i236/crebralfix/G26-slide/g26slide-bottom.jpg
Glock 26 AIWB slide version with Glock 19

The muzzle of the G19 actually rusted after approximately 7 days of use. I don't recommend continued use of any holster that doesn't protect the muzzle. There are no signs of rust on my Glock 26 after a month of AIWB carry with this holster.

Here are some other examples:


http://i73.photobucket.com/albums/i236/crebralfix/ultimaterevo/nframemuzzle.jpg

S&W 625 with 4" barrel in AIWB Combo (allows strong side carry too)

http://i73.photobucket.com/albums/i236/crebralfix/SIG%20P232/p232_worn_front.jpg
The SIG P232 disappears under a shirt

Dirty Bob
August 17, 2007, 06:01 PM
I have a Galco "USA" IWB that came with my P-11. I'm very happy with it. It conceals very well, including "tucked" carry, and it's fairly comfortable. A-IWB is my carry method.

Regards,
Dirty Bob

frankt
August 18, 2007, 09:51 PM
I use the "Hidden Companion" to Appendix carry a G30. It has a cant adjustable strap that lets you adjust the angle to your liking.

http://www.grandfatheroak.com/Stockdesigns.html

Rexster
August 19, 2007, 07:27 PM
I use now-discontinued nylon IWB rigs from Eagle Industries, which were ahead of their time in the use of a belt loop coupled with all-synthetic construction. (Everybody else at the time used clips.) They do not have anything to keep the mouth of the holster open after the gun is drawn, so some frown on that, but one-handed re-holstering was not considered a priority at the time these were made. I have one made for 4" large-framed revolvers, which will work fine with up to 5" barrels, and another for 3" medium frames. I have Milt Sparks Summer Specials for snubbies with the correct angle for AIWB, though their website does not show they will still make them for that angle. In modern stuff, I really like the looks of the rigs made by crebralfix, though I have not handled one in person.

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