Your carry progression?


August 16, 2009, 09:08 PM
I've been carrying for less than 5 years. My first carry gun (and my first handgun) was a P229 in 40S&W, because I absolutely loved the way it shot, and I shot it well. That worked for a while, but it was heavy for it's size, and hard to carry. Also, I had limited play-money at the time, wanted to own a couple different guns, and felt the need to change.

I moved to a Gov't size 1911, and found it to be a dream to shoot. It was a little easier to carry, but seemed so big. I just couldn't get comfortable with it's size. I sprung for a good carry belt and a Crossbreed Supertuck (which helped immensely, that might be my favorite holster yet), but it still felt like I was carrying a Trapper Keeper in my pants.

I moved to a Taurus Model 85 Ultra-Lite, which I still carry frequently. I shoot it adequately out to 5 or 7 yds (as far as I intend to shoot in a defensive situation outside my home). I almost never moved beyond this point, and still love it. Truth is, it's not a whole lot of fun to shoot on regular range trips, and the only handgun I have much interest in at the range is whatever my primary carry is at the time. I wanted something that would be a bit more fun to shoot... which means more practice and ultimately would breed proficiency over time. Nonetheless, the 85 is a tool to get the job done, that can go with me no matter what.

Recently, I acquired my first polymer, an XD9 compact. It carries well (at less weight than any auto I've ever carried) and ergonomically, fits very well. It points well, and despite my initial adversity to plastic, it's the right tool I was looking for.
I don't think I'm completely done looking, as I like wheelguns and leather, but for now I'm content... between the Model 85 and the XD9.

The question: What's your carry progression? What did you start with, and why? Why did you change, if at all? I hope this to be a discussion on specific firearms; which gun and for what reason, rather than a caliber battle (unless, you chose your carry gun specifically to accomodate a particular caliber, which makes sense.) Where did you start and where did you end up... and why?

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General Geoff
August 16, 2009, 09:21 PM
The first pistol I ever bought (about two weeks after I turned 21) was a Smith & Wesson SW99 in .40S&W, which is basically a Walther P99 clone. I bought it because it fit my hand very well, has fantastic ergonomics, and was cheap, $400 (law enforcement trade-in). I like it well enough, the single action trigger pull is a little clunky and the double action pull is terrible, but otherwise the gun is great. Very easy to field strip, lightweight, compact, etc.

I got a Blackhawk CQC leather thumb break holster for it, and carried that exclusively for about two and a half years.

Then I got a Smith & Wesson 610 revolver (N-frame with 6.5" barrel), and had to get a holster for that too. I got a Bianchi Cyclone holster for it, and carried that off & on for a few months, alternating between it and the SW99. I don't carry it often anymore since the end of the barrel tends to hit stuff repeatedly, such as chair bottoms, table corners, and counter tops. Then about 6 months ago I got a Para Ordnance S16-40 Limited, along with another Blackhawk CQC thumb break leather holster for it, and I've almost exclusively carried that since I took it to the range and ran it through its reliability trials. MUCH better trigger than the SW99, it's also heavier and larger in almost all dimensions, but that doesn't bother me since I generally open carry. Has less perceived recoil than the SW99 because of the extra weight. I have a 10mm Auto conversion barrel coming in for it, which will placate my desire for that little bit of extra power.

August 16, 2009, 09:22 PM
Bought a Colt Series 70 1911 in 1976 and it's been at my side for nearly 35 years. Occasionally would carry my Hi-Power, S&W M19 - and lately a Taurus PT111 when I need a smaller gun. But for me it's the old Colt, I trust it with my life and there's nothing better.

August 16, 2009, 09:53 PM
Here is a picture of me with my grandparents in 1958 carrying a Colt 1911 - I have progressed over the years and now I am carrying... a 1911.

August 16, 2009, 09:53 PM
I've owned guns all my life, but have only had a ccw permit fot about 8 years. For ccw, I went through a lot of iterations. Some too big, some too heavy, some not enough capacity, but I was on a mission to find the perfect ccw piece.

Started out with a Commander sized 1911, which isn't real small or real light and doesn't carry 10+1. I tried a superlight 357 snubbie that was too ammo sensitive. I tried many guns and have been with a Glock G26 and a Colt Series 80 as my main ccw guns. Still have many of the others.

August 16, 2009, 10:24 PM
Dang, that's a cool picture, AZ Rebel!

August 16, 2009, 10:33 PM
I think my first carry was a S&W 28 4 inch, then a 1911, then a S&W 29 4 inch. Current off duty carry is either a S&W 1006 or 1066. Carried the S&W 15 for duty first then the M9 for several years during that duty and we willnot even get into what I have to carry at work NOW. Oh yes I have been carrying a few years.

August 16, 2009, 10:57 PM
Started with a Steyr ( S9 - small enough, light enough, but with a full 9mm +P behind it. Then added a Rohrbaugh R9 ( Super small, very light, and a real monster to shoot. :eek: Got a Steyr M357 - gosh, I do like that caliber! Now mostly carry a Para Carry 12 .45 acp (!) and/or a S&W 642 ( But having the others for flexibility is sure nice.

Jim D.

August 16, 2009, 11:01 PM
What I carry now (until I get my Kimber Crimson II) is a G19....fits well.

August 16, 2009, 11:02 PM
SIG P220 -> Ruger SP101 -> Browning Hi-Power 40 -> random other guns -> 1911 -> Glock and/or SIG P220

August 16, 2009, 11:07 PM
Started with a Taurus PT111 in 9mm and it worked well for a bit, but I hated the trigger pull. I went to a Sig 239 in 40cal and loved it, moved a little to a 229 in 40cal. Went through a phase of 1911 and loved it but ended up selling it later on. Went from a Keltec in 32 to a keltec in .380. Tried a Smith and Wesson 642 and HATED it. Went to an XD Sub in 9mm and loved it.

Now I have a matching pair of Xd's one in 3 and one in 4 inch in 9mm. Keltec pf9 is also on the way in 9mm. The thing I have realized over time is that while I love the feel and the way that I shoot Sig's that the size and weight really doesn't lend itself to every day carry. I have also come to realize that spending a little more on decent holsters and training both in classes and ammo can make a HUGE difference in skill.

Ragnar Danneskjold
August 16, 2009, 11:09 PM
Walther P22 ->Ruger P345 -> WaltherP99/Taurus PT140 (I carry both depending on my mood)

And my most recent purchase as of last week, a Ruger LCP. Though I only carry that when I can't carry the P99 or PT140

August 16, 2009, 11:09 PM
First handgun and carry gun was a Para Ordinance P13, then I open carried a Beretta M9 for a few years as it went good with my camo, after that I went to a Para Ordinance CCW, and have recently settled on the Smith Model 60. Might start on the P7 here pretty soon.

August 17, 2009, 12:34 AM
I started with a Sprinfield Government 1911, felt absolutely huge on me. I bought a Kimber Ultra Eclipse and I carried that for a good long while. I pocket carried that in my baggy jeans and cargo pants. (Nemesis Holster) I also used IWB Desantis Tuck THis Holster. Currently, I still carry this gun occasionaly with IWB Galco holster. I regularly use this gun with my Galco Miami Classic holster on Sundays and formal occasions when I use my suit or during the winter months when I can throw on a jacket.
The Kimber was still a little heavy as she is solid steel and so I ended up getting a Walther PPK/s. Still a little heavy, but I can wear this ALOT more than I can with any of my 1911's. I have mulitiple holsters for this gun as well and will use it depending on my outfit and my situation. I generally will pocket carry my PPK/s with a Nemesis holster. Sometimes, I will ankle carry using a Galco Ankle Glove if the pants I am wearing bulge too much. I will occasionally also use my Miami CLassic Galco Shoulder Holster for my PPK/s as well.

August 17, 2009, 12:59 AM
What's your carry progression?

From Kimber fullsized 1911 in .45 to the same. Only change was when I would occasionally switch off, to S&W 1006 (fullsized 10mm) or occasionally P232 (smaller .380 but not a pocket pistol per se).

August 17, 2009, 01:06 AM
Kimber fullsize 1911, then I picked up a S&W 638 for when the 1911 was simply not doable. Haven't looked back.

August 17, 2009, 08:17 AM
The question: What's your carry progression? What did you start with, and why? Why did you change, if at all?

First carried a Astra Constable in 1975. I liked that gun. A few years later a friend begged me for it so I sold it... now wish I had it back.

Went to a small frame five shot .38spcl Charter Arms revolver. I hated that gun, couldn't shoot it worth a darn. It lasted a couple years then I finally gave up on it when it started to loosen up.

Went to a Beretta 84 sometime in the '90s, a marvelous pistol. I also picked up a Seecamp. I still have both. I retired the Beretta from carry duty in 2006 for a HK P2000sk after a long search for the best available. I guess I just wanted a new gun. ;)

The Seecamp went back to the factory for a overhaul about a year ago and still sees duty in my pocket. Nobody makes a better pocket gun.

For the most part I've only carried these four guns. Three are spectacular, one I really didn't like and replaced after only a few years. I have carried, or rather tested other pistols, but none made it to top billing. I do however on occation carry a Sig P232 in a shoulder holster when my back is bothering me. It is also a very good choice.

Some of the really outstanding also rans I studied for carry duty are;

Walther P99c ... if my HK ever broke, this is next best.
HK P7 ... not carried due to personal failing, not because of the gun. :banghead:
Kahr T9 ... reminds me of the P7
Kahr K9 ... very competent.

August 17, 2009, 09:44 AM
Desert Eagle>USP>1911>G26>442>NAA Mini

Just kidding:D

August 17, 2009, 10:32 AM
Colt 70 series .45 ACP (started about 1978)
Colt 80 series .45 ACP (got in rotation in about 1998)
Glock 19 /17 / 21 (about 2005, rotated them for about 2 years, but also carried my Colt as well)
Colt 70 series .45 ACP (from 2007 till now)
Norinco 1911 .45
Colt Combat Commander .

Now, I have also carried a Smith "J" frame of some sort since about the early 80's. Also carried a NAA .22 mag off and on for a couple of years.

All dates are purely guessing from memory, which ain't too good:rolleyes:

August 17, 2009, 10:33 AM
I started with a glock 27 as that was all my departement at the time let us carry off duty. Sold that and bought a Kimber Ultra 1911 that jammed like it was its job. Got rid of the Kimber and bought a Sig P239 .40, and a S&W M&P 340 .357 with laser grips.

Carry either the Sig or the .357 now, depending on the weather and the "threat level".

There was a Kahr PM40 in the mix at one point in time, but it jammed as well.

August 17, 2009, 10:42 AM
I've carried one model of firearm in all the time that I've been carrying a concealed weapon: a Walther PPK/S. I've carried a German-made version, a French-made version, an Interarms/Ranger/USA-made version, and the current S&W-made version, but it's essentially the same gun. I recently added a Beretta Jetfire as a BUG but can think of no good reason as of yet to change from the PPK/S. The reason is simple: I can shoot this model better than I shoot with anything else of comparable size on the market.

August 17, 2009, 11:28 AM
My first carry gun was a Bersa Thunder 380 CC. I bought a pocket holster, a pancake holster and and IWB holster for it and carried it exclusively for several months. I wanted a better range gun and something with more power, so I bought an XD-40 with a nice Fist belt holster and a CrossBreed SuperTuck Deluxe IWB. I carried that a lot, but found that the grip tended to print. I bought an XD-40 Subcompact and starting carry the subby and using the Service for IDPA, pin shooting and general range use. Around that time, the seer broke on my Bersa. The finish was worn, the linkage was eating away at the allow frame and I was just not happy with it. I sent it in for repair, then sold it and bought a Kahr P9 Covert.

The Kahr P9 Covert proved to be such an accurate and reliable shooter and so effortless to carry that I hardly carry my XDs anymore. It is about the ultimate carry gun, as far as I'm concerned. It is small enough for pocket carry, thin enough for very comfortable IWB carry, light enough that you can almost forget you're carrying it and accurate enough for me to clear 5 bowling pins in 6 shots at 15 yards in good time. It has never malfunctioned when clean.

August 17, 2009, 01:45 PM
Started with a G23, but wouldn't carry on the hottest days, so I went with a Ruger LCP for the hot months with the Crossbreed microclip IWB. Practically disappears with that setup! Once the weather cools off, I go back to the G23 with either a Galco IWB or if it's cool enough, a Galco shoulder holster if I can wear a vest/jacket and not sweat to death.

kudos to those who can conceal a bigger gun in hot weather, but I'm just not up to that challenge. I am uncomfortable with a gun that size in only shorts and a t-shirt.

August 17, 2009, 01:52 PM
I cant think offhand but first was a .44 cap and ball, i still carry that thing around for scaring cougars and coyotes away from livestock. it makes a huge bang and 4 foot flame lol.

my normal carry is a CZ-52 in 7.62x25 coke bottle round. Its a fun little day carry gun.

Saving pennies about to put a blackhawk in 357 mag on lay away. its stainless steel and perty......

August 17, 2009, 02:20 PM
The first one I carried was a Taurus .38 Snubbie, than, a Walter PP in 7,65mm... Than a CZ83 in .380 and for 9 years now, the Beretta 84F in .380.

Just to remember, in Brazil, .380 is the "largest" pistol caliber I can legally carry. :(


Andre Tiba - Brazil

August 17, 2009, 02:22 PM
ive been carrying for about 2 years now. i started out with the only hand gun i had. a Hi-Point C9. very reliable and i was extremely accurate with it. when i got some more money i picked up a S&W Sigma Allied Forces in 40 and thats been on my hip 99% of the time for the last 1.5years. but i also do trade it out for my Rossi M461 .357mag snubbie.

August 17, 2009, 02:42 PM
I can't say that my changing my CCW was part of any "progression" but more part of a random event sequence. I am now 72 years old and what I carry is a Commander size 1911. IMHO it just can't be beat.

August 17, 2009, 05:55 PM
KelTec P3AT only from day one. I have other options but can't imagine ever migrating away from that little .380. For me it's the perfect year round/all weather piece: 100% reliable, rugged, capable of being carried in different types of holsters depending on the scenario, and inexpensive enough so that if I lose it I won't be heartbroken.

August 17, 2009, 06:53 PM
Bersa 380
Sig P229
Springfield Armory 1911
NAA Guardian 32
Kel-Tec P32
Taurus M85 (finally)

A Mil-Pro competed with the M85 for a while, but it wasn't really a pocket gun.

August 17, 2009, 07:57 PM

CZ-75B in .40. Loved it, and could shoot it. Traded it though because it was too heavy. Literally pulled my pants down in my CrossBreed Supertuck.

XD.45 bi-tone service. Lighter and awesome gun. Shot well and had a huge capacity. Was starting to lose weight and started having a lot of trouble wearing clothes that concealed the gun but didn't look absolutely rediculous on me (had a bunch of clothes that were 3xxl on someone that was about XL at the time...)

S&W637 ultralight in 38. Hated shooting it, but it was a carry gun so whatever. I could shoot it well but didn't like too. Lost a lot of weight (now a size L) and because of that I started wearing tighter clothes (to show off the 'other' guns :) ) and started wanting something slimmer.

Currently carrying either my Steyr M40 or EAA Witness .45 polymer compact. Not slim guns but downright FUN to shoot. Smooth and slow recoil of the .45 is a pleasure, and the natural pointing and innovative sights plus integrated fingergrooves on the Steyr make for super ergonomic shooting I can do all day. I carry these (one at a time) while I save for a walther PPS in .40.


GP-100 SS 6" full lug. Went on a hike with it ONCE. Sold it immediately. Weighed more than all of my other gear COMBINED.

Just ordered a .44 Taurus Tracker 5-shot.... we'll see.

August 17, 2009, 08:10 PM
I have carried the following at one time - and in various chronology, including repeats, sells and rebuys:

S&W Model 36 .38 Special (given to me by my grandfather - still carry)
EG Makarov (sold this to my brother)
Beretta Tomcat .32 (liked the sights, but traded it for a keltec)
Keltec .32 (I've had 3 of these, currenly wife carries in purse)
Keltec .380 (stupidly sold this to my 2nd cousin)
Keltec 9mm (P11)
Keltec .40 (had this for about 1 week - hated it)
Beretta 96FS (Big hat, no cattle -- traded up for a 1911)
Springfield Armory 1911 Mil-Spec .45ACP (one of my favorites)
Taurus 85 Ultra Lite Blue .38 Spl (going to give this to my Mom this weekend)
Taurus 85 Ultra Lite (Stainless) .38 Spl-- [just bought this today, btw] :D
Kahr PM9
Taurus 7 shot .357 Magnum Stainless Revolver (wish I still had this one)
Glock 17 9mm (currently the most carried)

I think that's it.

August 17, 2009, 08:20 PM
I've only been carrying for about 3 years...Started off with a Beretta 92G and it was too big and heavy...Then started carrying a CZ 75 SP-01 Tactical..It was a little skinnier, but even HEAVIER...I then moved to a Glock 26...I still carry the Glock 26, but I recently changed my daily *offduty* carry to a Glock 20SF IWB @ 4 o'clock and the Glock 26 goes inside the left ankle. The Glock 20SF is still big and heavy, but still smaller than the Beretta and CZ. I usually don't carry any spare mags, but I may start carrying 2 spare mags with the G20SF and 1 spare mag with the G26.

August 17, 2009, 08:32 PM
I started my carrying days with an XD 45 compact, then moved to a PT145, then a Taurus 651 for a little while, then a P3AT, also a CA .44spl, then a Glock 19 and a P-11.

And now, a RIA 5" 1911 or a Detonics 3" 1911, whichever my hand hits first. I especially find the Detonics so easy to conceal that the p3at hasn't left the safe in months. I am currently trying to sell the Kel-Tecs to fund a new snubbie, probably an LCR, but believe me it will not replace my 1911's :D. I've traded and sold away everything but the 1911's and the Kel-Tecs for now, even the infalible Glock 19. It was always just a little too fat for me.

August 17, 2009, 09:02 PM
I started with a SA 1911-A1 loaded and then some. then I switched to a Glock G21 for the sake of improved capacity and reliability. Later I switched to a Glock G22 for no reason other than I could.

August 17, 2009, 09:19 PM
The question: What's your carry progression? What did you start with, and why? Why did you change, if at all?

I started years ago with the only things I had. A Colt GM in .45 and a S&W M&P snubby, this was a pre-model 10 .38 Spl. This was all I had and when I had to carry I carried one of these.

Later I added a alloy framed Colt Commander in .38 Super which I still have and use. I added it because it was lighter and smaller than the GM with 2 more rounds and a powerful round.

I also added an M13 with a 3" barrel and an M640 .38 with a 2 5/8" barrel.

Still carry a GM in .45 in woodsy places or an M629.


August 17, 2009, 09:46 PM
I started with a G-23. I shot it well but I always found it too fat to conceal well. Best holster I ever had for it was a High Noon Hidden Ally and even with that, it was not comfortably concealable.

I then went through a variety of j-frames in pocket carry. The steel 049 was too heavy. The 37 and the 360 had exposed hammers. The 340 felt like a hand grenade when shooting .357s....and I never shot any of them all that well (esp the Scandiums w/.357s).

Thoroughly hooked on S&W revolvers, I tried Scandium 396 and 325 in Smart Carry holster. Do-able, but not quite there yet.

I tried a several sub-compact 1911s including a Para C-6 (all-steel and a bit heavy).

I tried Kel-Tecs in .32, 380, and 9mm. I had no luck with (and as a result, no or faith in) the reliability of any of them.

I tried the Kahr PM9 in pocket carry and...nirvana. :) I carried it exclusively for almost three years, adding a Kahr P45 for winter carry IWB.

However, I'm a firm believer in "carry the largest caliber you can shoot well", so...

Last winter, I started carrying an L- or N-frame IWB (.357 or .45LC), and when Springtime came around, I "only" moved down to the Kahr P45 IWB instead of the PM9 in the pocket. This is an ongoing challenge as I am only 5'9" and 145.

This winter, I plan on carrying an N-frame or steel 5" 1911, and maybe next spring I'll "only" move down to a 3 or 4" 1911. :)

August 17, 2009, 10:29 PM
Dan Wesson PM2 in 45 , Kimber Eclipse Target II , Glock 22 , Glock 17 , Glock 21 , XD service 45, Glock 21 SF , XD Tactical in 45, STI Trojan 45, Browning Hi Power in 9mm, STI Lawman 45, and now a Sig P220.

Lets just say I was on a soul search. Now I carry the Sig 220 in 45acp, but it usually depends on what I am doing or where I am going . Some pistols fill different niches better than others.

August 18, 2009, 11:05 PM
I started with a 22mag mini during the mid 90s (when we were being told it was as powerful as a 38). Sometime after that I began to alternate between a 32, a 380, & a 9. Around 9/11 I switched and began to carry pistols that started with a 4. I stuck with that for several years. Since the 9mm ammo is so good now, I'll carry a 9, a 40, or a 45.

August 19, 2009, 09:23 AM
The first hand gun I bought for ccw was a glock 26,loved the gun didnt like carring it kinda fat.Next was a PF9 great for carry not so great to shoot,next was a Taurus 605 357 snubbie carried well shot well(should have kept it) nexted was a Smith 638 airweight snub and That has been on my person daily for 2 yrs now.Its just to easy to carry.When we get to cooler weather my colt officer will acompany the 638.But the 638 or verssion of it will alway be there.Ive put several thousnd rounds through it and have complete faith in it.

Old John
August 19, 2009, 10:01 AM
Hmmmm.......everyday CCW....I've traded some.

I Started with a Taurus model 85, .38 special.
Next was a Makarov, 9mm.
Then I got the Ruger KP90, in .45 acp.
After that I got Colt Commander 1991A1, .45 acp.
Then it was a Springfield G.I model .45 acp.
Finally I got a Kimber Pro-carry HD, .45acp.

Now I carry a Ruger SP101, .357 Magnum
or a Ruger GP100, .357 Magnum.
I came back to revolvers, after almost 25 years.:)

Tom Fury
August 19, 2009, 10:17 AM
I'll play:
First and only at the time was Ruger P-85>Para P-14 kit gun>Detonics Mk VII>Combat Commander>S&W4506>LWCommander/SW4516-2/SW457
went to.45 and never looked back; shoot better somehow withCommander length gun than 5"; My 457 is really accurate and dead reliable.
Cheers, TF

August 19, 2009, 11:17 AM
Started carrying in 86 and my progression went from:
86 to early 90's - Colt Detective Special .38 or Colt Combat Commander .45
around 92 to 97 - Sig P220 .45
97 to Present - Sig P226 9mm primary when dress will allow
early 2000's to present - Sig P239 9mm everyday either primary or BUG to P226
about 2 months in 2007 (till I got rid of it) - S&W MP9c
2007 till last week - Ruger Alaskan .44 - winter and field carry
last week forward - Ruger Alaskan .454 for winter and field carry

James T Thomas
August 19, 2009, 02:17 PM
I started with a Super Blackhawk -4 5/8", went to a GP100 -4", then S&W
629 -4". I still carry those three; one at a time of course. Use a SP101 -3"
for discretion requirements.

What was the deciding factor for me was "after acton" analysis.

You may progress full circle too, if you face the eye of the elephant,
and live to later rethink your progression.
"From now -on, I'm going to carry something bigger."

What you read here in some of the replies has been the progression of many;
who have gradually went lighter and smaller because they began to believe in statistical probabilities instead of random chance happening.

"It wont happen to me" is perhaps the worst assumption you can make in your life.

August 19, 2009, 03:01 PM
Taurus 66 4" .357mag - too big, too loud! > Bersa Thunder .380 - too snappy, shot low > Glock 19 - didn't like the grooves and I got 1911-itis > Springfield GI - too heavy > Sig P239 - not enough capacity for the size > Glock 26 - nice! > Glock 17 - even nicer and not much harder to conceal... 17 rounds on tap, baby!

August 19, 2009, 04:53 PM

August 19, 2009, 05:50 PM
Started with Glock 23 IWB, due to size switched to
Glock 27 IWB. Couldn't shoot that well enough to be comfortable with so switched to
Ruger SR9 IWB when dress permitted, usally with SW642 ankle/pocket BUG, then
Got lazy and just started carrying 642 IWB/Ankle/Pocket
Incident occurred where I wished I had night sights...

Bought a G26 (put night sights on) and fell in love, and carried that and SW642, switching them both between Ankle and waist, but generally carried at the same time (I just couldn't choose which I liked better). Missed having a rail and light, so bought a Sig P229 and started to cheat on the G26 with her.

Winter=P229 IWB with extra mag w/on occasion G26 on ankle

Summer= G26 IWB (no extra mag) w/LCP in the pocket (sometimes)

August 19, 2009, 09:38 PM
I bought my first gun while a starving college student. Gun show revolver was what I could afford, though I would have loved a SA. Bought a Ruger .357, stainless, w. 2.75" barrel. Carried that in a fanny pack for a couple of years in Houston in the 80s - that was when a lot of muggers started killing their *cooperating* victims. Scary.

When I had the money, I traded up to a Glock 23. It didn't fit as well in the fanny pack, and the IWB holster I found couldn't really made that wide lump disappear or be comfortable. Wound up letting my CHL expire because I just flat wasn't carrying that firearm. I had one of the initial 2 year term CHLs when they first came out.

Then in January of this year I went to my first gun show in years. Was thinking about getting a big magnum as a range toy. Stumbled across the Walther PPS in 9mm. Eureka! This was the thin SA I'd been looking for 15 years earlier when I settled on the G23. Bought it on the spot, and applied for my CHL the next week. Been carrying the PPS 16-18 hours/day (after my 4 month wait for the Texas DPS) ever since. LOVE this gun.

I have an XDm .40 for the range, the nightstand, and if I were to be feeling particularly insecure about a destination or trip. I'll scare up an IWB for it eventually & give it a try concealed for fun, but don't expect it to wind up as EDC.

August 19, 2009, 10:26 PM
My carry guns are getting smaller. Go figure.

August 20, 2009, 07:10 AM
I still vary what I carry.

I have carried;Glock 22, PT145Pro, Beretta 92,S&W 642, and various others,

I still carry; XD45Tac, Glock 19, Sig P229R 9mm, KelTec P11, depending on circumstances.

I also have a few on my wish list that could be carried once proven reliable.

Shytheed Dumas
August 20, 2009, 07:26 AM
Kel Tec P3AT - I lost confidence in it after light primer strikes.

Kahr MK9 - 'Almost' perfect, but too heavy for pocket carry.

Kahr PM9 - My favorite gun!

August 20, 2009, 11:25 AM
I'm on the 'getting smaller' path as well.

PT145 -> P11 -> PF9 -> LCP

Looking for a NAA Mini as well, but not as a primary.

These are everyday carry...special circumstances result in different camping gets the P11 (like having 23 rounds of 9mm in such a small package), but am also working on getting an SP-101 for another option.

I also just picked up a J-frame, but haven't gotten to test it out yet, so it haven't been evaluated fully for its role.

August 20, 2009, 11:53 AM
The only changes I've made are to change and add holsters to be able to carry more firearms, more effectively.

I started with a Fobus paddle holster for my M1911 and a belt slide for my Glock 19 and Glock 22. I never wear cover garments in warm weather, and VERY rarely untucked shirts, so they were only appropriate between late fall and early spring. I had these before I got my Ohio CHL last year.

No matter what I did, the muzzle of the Glock 22 showed while carried in the belt slide. I ended up giving it to my boss for his XD9.

The day I picked up my CHL, I bought a Desantis Nemesis for my S&W Model 36 and a Bianchi IWB for the Glock 19. The Nemesis has worked great and I use it whenever I'm going to need to disarm frequently (Post Office, restaurants with liquor licenses, etc.) The Bianchi was a disaster. It's not reinforced at the mouth, so it's VERY hard to holster when on my belt. I was so concerned that I might accidentally pull the trigger while fighting to holster, that I stopped using it after a couple of days. I replaced it with a Don Hume 715M IWB.

I liked the Hume IWB so much that I bought similar holsters for every gun I carry, except for the Model 36.

August 20, 2009, 12:15 PM
Been carrying everyday for about 5 years now. I was living in Memphis during this time and always thought the way my CCW "evolved" while living there was somewhat funny.

Started out with a Ruger SP101 .357, loaded with 145 gr. Winchester Silvertips, carried in a Milt Sparks VersaMaxII. I love this gun and still carry it from time to time. It wasn't long though and I started to feel a little underprepared with just 5 rounds and a less than speedy re-load. Now I do believe this was, and is, an excellent carry gun. I just began to feel like the chances of facing more than one, or maybe even more than two attackers wasn't that far fetched. I decided to up my capacity and switched to a Springfield-Armory XD9 sub-compact. This weapon was loaded with Winchester Rangers and concealed in another Milt Sparks holster, but this time in the Watch-Six model. With this set up I had 11 rounds of 9mm on tap, with another 16 round mag on my belt. Now this I'm sure was an adequate combo. I was well trained and practiced, and spent alot of time taking defensive pistol classes. It was a daily occurence though to hear about assaults and murders on the news and I had several friends become victims of violent crime. At this point it was probably more of a psychological upgrade than anything, but I felt the need for a larger caliber. Bought my first 1911, a Springfield Armory full-size stainless loaded model, and I've never looked back. I love this gun and have carried it nearly everyday since I bought it in a Milt Sparks (yes, I'm a fan) Summer Special II loaded with 230 gr. Remington Golden Sabers. I've had a little trigger work done and a few other changes since then. It's incredibly reliable and accurate and IMHO one of the finest CCW platforms avaliable. This gun served me well while living in the city and I was very very thankful I had it on a number of occasions. I did finally make what I believe was the finest "progression" possible though and moved away from Memphis. ;) Still pack the 1911 everyday, though thankfully I feel like the chances of me having to use it have dropped considerably!!


August 20, 2009, 12:25 PM
I carried illegally for over 10 years with a .25ACP, little cheap RG zinc gun that was reliable if inaccurate. It was small, it was cheap if I had to ditch it, and so it fit the need. It saved me once, too, without having to shoot.

Then, I got an NAA .22 mini, 1 5/8 inch in long rifle, folding holster grip. I carried that about 10 years and got a little Grendel P12 .380ACP (that I still have) that saw some rear pocket duty until 1996 when the CCW law was passed. I immediately traded a P95 for a Taurus 85SSUL and bought a Kel Tec P11 as I was waiting on my CCW license to come in. I'd played with carrying IWB around the house. While I bought an IWB for the Kel Tec and a Ruger P90, I quickly found that larger pocket pants and jeans would handle pocket carry with the P11 and even the revolver.

So, you see, I have carried big guns IWB, but my progression was from the smallest guns I could get before it was legal to carry and up to the little Taurus and Kel Tecs when the new carry laws came along. I probably would have bought that little P11 anyway as a part time carry when it came out along about the same time as carry became legal. But, I probably wouldn't have carried it all that often in preference to smaller guns that are harder to detect.

August 20, 2009, 03:38 PM
I started with a used Glock 19 that would not shoot to point of aim to save my life. But it was the only gun I had. I replaced it with a Kahr P9, which was traded in because I didn't like the multiple failures it had (Although to be fair to Kahr, they all occurred within Kahr's stated 400 round break-in period) and because for a low-capacity 9mm I thought it kicked like a mule. Bought a Ruger SP101 which was traded in because it was difficult to carry and the Crimson Trace grips, though I loved them dearly, made it stick to my shirts. Along the way, I bought a S&W 642 that I still carry when my dress is restricted in some way. Traded the Ruger for a S&W M&P .40, which I carry pretty much everywhere now. It's not as concealable, but the capacity and power is greater, and it's fantastically accurate and ergonomic. Now I want an M&P compact.

August 20, 2009, 07:30 PM
Depending on the temp, and situation, I carry my S&WMod60, Franken1911, Star BM, Arcus 98 or PM63. Though the Arcus replaced my KBI HiPower, and the PM63 replaced my CZ50 this year. With as much time as i spend in Schools, I don't carry 100%, but the PM63 is always in the truck if it's not IWB

August 20, 2009, 07:41 PM
I started with a Browning Hi-Power with military sights. I stayed with it. Why tamper with perfection? :evil:

Dr. Tad Hussein Winslow
August 20, 2009, 08:48 PM
Done this many times in the past, but what the hey - I'll see if I can remember:

Since 1996 (and yes Gawd help me, I had a Glock nut phase)....
1. Glock 21, .45 acp
2. Glock 27, .40 s&w
3. Glock 29, 10mm
4. Glock 30, .45 acp
5. Glock 30, in .400 Corbon
6. Glock 29, 10mm (again)
7. Kel Tec P32, .32 auto
8. Kimber Ultra Compact II, .45 acp
9. Wilson KZ45, .45 acp
10. Kimber Custom CDP II, .45 acp (wish I'd kept this one)
11. Kel Tec P380, .380 auto
12. CZ 85 Combat, 9x19mm (kept this one; glad I did)
13. Taurus Tracker 4", .45 acp
14. Taurus Mil Pro PT145, .45 acp
15. CZ 75 Compact PCR, 9x19mm
16. Kahr MK9, 9x19mm (still my primary carry)
17. Sig GSR Revolution Compact, .45 acp (kept this one, still carry some)
18. Taurus 85 SS, .38 spl (kept this one; still carry some)
19. Taurus 24/7 OSS-DS .45 acp (still carry rarely; woods carry)

Along the way at one point, I'd carry an NAA mini-rev in .22lr for backup. There were times when I carried the following just for spits -n- giggles, but they weren't carry guns, just dedicated house, pickup, office, or woods pistols that I tried on for size once or twice: CZ 75 SP01, Springfield longslide loaded, Bersa Thunder Nine, Ruger P40, Llama 1911, Glock 20.

I think the best "standard belt carry" ever was/is the CZ 75 Compact PCR, but I just don't do standard anymore - the vast majority of the time it's SmartCarry (Kahr MK9), pocket carry (Taurus 85 OR Kahr MK9), or tuckable IWB (Sig GSR revolution). The CZ just wasn't/isn't suitable for the common "no covering garment" type carry that I now do. I suppose you could try to find a custom tuckable holster for it, but it'd still print like a muthahumpa.

August 20, 2009, 09:04 PM
Started with a Les Baer 1911 and then later in life I moved up to an Ed Brown 1911.

August 21, 2009, 05:38 PM
steel 9mm then

plastic 9mm then and now.......

j frame .38+p:D

August 22, 2009, 09:43 PM
My first carry gun was a Ruger P-95 w/ a Kramer IWB holster, about 8 years ago. When I got a bit more money I went to a Taurus Millenium PT111 in 9mm. Next to a Taurus Model 85CH. Recently I got a Taurus Model 605. I sometimes carry the PT111 or 85CH or both. After some range time with the 605 I may carry both revolvers.

August 23, 2009, 06:18 PM
Started out in '81 with a Sterling 22 auto, before aquiring a 6 1/2" Smith 29. Not too long after, I laid hands on a 4" 29, which has been one of the main carry's since. What a joy to carry after the 6 1/2" gun! Been some sidetracks with a 4 3/4" Colt SAA 44 spl for a couple years, and several Colt's 1911's. For my uses, the 1911's simply weren't up to the revolvers as far as functional reliabilty, flexibilty with various loads, and power for out in the hills. I never got used to waking up with it under my pillow and finding it cocked and unlocked. I also was never able to shoot an auto as well as a revolver, despite many thousands of rounds thru them. Shooting game with 230 gr ball ammo is singularly unimpressive also, compared to even medium vel SWC loads in the 44 or 45 Colt. Been some off and on flirtations with a 4" Smith 19 (nice and light to carry, but VERY LOUD, and not really comforting in grizzly country) and a Smith 24. Ruger SA's in 44 and 45 Colt get used fairly frequently when up where the bears hang out (tho no guarantee that they won't be wherever they want to be). Still have and carry the 4" 29, tho can't do it with hot loads since a hand injury years ago. SA's work fine with big loads.

August 23, 2009, 07:05 PM
My first was age 11 and it was a Ruger Standard .22lr
when KS got CCW I started with a 642in a blackhawk but didnt like the recoil, moved to a S&W 10-4 3" in a Galco Highrise, and then a glock in a galco cop, next came a Colt 1911 in Milt Sparks leather but couldnt find a good belt to keep it up so I went to a Ruger LCP in a Fobus. Next came a sig 232 in a leather bikini wrap, and between that and the LCP I have found the answer.

August 23, 2009, 07:16 PM
Springfield XD9 Sub-compact> still carrying it, I love that little gun!

I did recently buy a sig p6 with the intentions of creating a carry rotation, but i dunno...

August 23, 2009, 09:10 PM
(double post)

August 23, 2009, 09:18 PM
Started with a Rossi 461 (.357 mag). Carried IWB on my lower back, ankle holster when at work (delivery driver, college job).

Now, with my newfound income, I've moved up to a S&W 442 (.38+P) with Crimson Trace grips. I carry in my front pocket.

It's totally worth it to splurge on the gun, and never look back.

August 24, 2009, 04:37 AM
Very interesting reads above... If nothing else, a newcomer might read all this and think "hmmm.... I better look into this a bit and shoot a few guns before buying". :o

My progression:

Way back when:
-Glock 17 gen 1, didn't carry often. Shot beautifully.
-Beretta flip-top .22LR for more discreet carry, still didn't carry often

Years later, decided to carry more:
Sold above as had little money (esp. Beretta was ammo-sensitive, tho neat little gun)
-Glock 27

Started carrying more, spent lots of time fiddling with the Glock, 357SIG barrel, sights, smithing, etc..
Finally decided I didn't like shooting .40 at all. 357SIG actually better but frustrated with size of platform.
Had young kids, wanted external safety. Wanted external safety anyway, with soft holster. Sold it.

-H&K USP45c. V1. Niice shooting. Multiple modes of carry/readiness, from condition 1 on down. Usually carried SmartCarry, sometimes C-TAC. Reliable as a hammer. About as good-looking. :)

Started to learn more about H&K. Did more minor gunsmithing. Didn't mind the crunchenticker manual of arms, but still... Always lusted after a P7M8. Then the P7 PSP police refurbs showed up!!! :D

-P7 PSP. Nearly the ideal manual of arms for me. Very elegant and well-built. Fiddled, melonited it, tritium tubes, etc. Tried various holsters, SmartCarry, Alessi CQC/S, Crossbreed Supertuck, AKJ Concealco.

Found myself wanting to pocket-carry more. Researched why I wouldn't benefit from the SW 340PD. Looked at SW, Taurus, Ruger. Charter.

-SW 442. Fantastic pocket carry. Feels pretty good to shoot for a tiny gun.

Nowadays, I carry one of the above:
-SW 442 in pocket holster (Mika or PCS molded leather), "go everywhere", or in SmartCarry to go running, knock around, etc.
-HK P7 in SmartCarry or AKJ Concealco if I want a fast and secure classic holster draw, more capacity, more often when I go into the big city or want something more powerful than the 442. It's a thin gun (like the 1911) and in the unique AKJ rig, it's pretty much optimal and disappears under most clothing.

For remote areas, I take the 629 carry comp. Which is the wife/home defense pistol; a work of art. :D

It's a journey. It's really a very individual choice. Not sure I'd have got where I am now without the above learning. If someone told me not to buy a Glock 18 yrs ago, or again 9 yrs ago, not sure I would've listened.

August 25, 2009, 08:54 AM
Started my legal days of carrying with a Kel-Tec P3AT in the front pocket. Did that for years and it was reliable enough that I bought another one as a spare. I felt it was just too "fragile" of a pistol, though, and it would break at any time. Carried my Interarms PPK/s in a Desantis pocket holster a few times, but it was too large and heavy for the same payload as the P3AT with a +1 mag extension, so I went back to the P3AT for a while. I IWB carried my G19 a bit but, living at Florida at the time, limited that a lot because it was so friggin' hot and humid all the time! Found my perfect pocket carry with a Kahr PM9 and still carry it in a JS leather pocket holster every day. Sometimes it's the primary and sometimes it's the BUG. I also carry two 6 round spares in a mag holder in the left pocket. I had a Kimber 1911 (hi cap at 13+1), but that was the house gun as I didn't have a holster for it. Now, it rides in a Crossbreed Supertuck up here in Connecticut during the winter. It's not all that heavy (polymer grip/aluminum frame), but it's bulky, so the G19 gets most of the summer IWB duty. I still carry the Kimber if it cools off a bit and the PM9 always rides up front in the pocket. P3AT and PPK/s never get carried anymore.

August 26, 2009, 08:01 PM
I started with a xd45 but the grip was too long and printed sometimes. I had not learned that a good holster could fix that easily yet.

Moved to a Colt Commander XSE in 38 super. Ammo was very hard to find locally though.

Picked up a Springfield Champion next. I'm a sissy though and the gun felt too heavy compared to the Colt that I had.

Bought a Taurus 605 that I loved but it didn't serve too well as a range gun as much as it did a good carry gun.

Traded the Taurus for an xd9sc. Got back to not liking it because of the width of the grip.

I then bought a J-frame 642. I love to pocket carry it in cargo shorts.

I acquired a PPK/S in .380 that I love carrying as well. now I just have to save up for an Aston Martin to go with the Walther.

August 26, 2009, 08:04 PM
I started with an XD45 compact which has been pretty constant over the two years I've had my permit. I've tried a bersa .380 and a Sig P232 with mixed results. For about the past year I've been using a P3AT and that has been working great but i'm looking more for a .357 mag J frame now.

August 27, 2009, 12:53 PM
PPK/S for 10 years plus
Now Colt LW Commander or if the situation dictates a Keltec 32 or both.

August 27, 2009, 05:30 PM
Not sure you could call it a progression. My first was a CZ compact in 9mm followed about a month later by a 642. I still carry both. I am thinking about a Colt new agent or DW CBOB in the future though.

August 27, 2009, 11:01 PM
1970's. . . .2" S&W J frame revolver (.38)
1980's. . . .3" S&W K frame revolver (.357)
1990's. . . .several different Glocks
2000--2009. . . .2" S&W J frame revolver (.357)

After years of teaching personal protection I found the gun I always seemed to have with me was a trusty revolver. I know all the arguments about fire power and reloading, but up close and personal the little revolver will do what I need. I have other choices, and I will change if the situation dictates. But I never leave home without my snubbie.

August 28, 2009, 12:42 AM
-Kel Tec P32 the day I got my CHL (about a year ago). I still carry it on occasion.

-S&W M60 'chief special' J-frame .357 in a Galco Holster for the past 6 months. (I love leather and SS)

My next carry piece will probably be a DW CBOB in 45acp, or 10mm if I start hand loading <---(more leather and SS! :evil: )

August 28, 2009, 10:12 AM

Pre-CCW days, open carry:

Iver Johnson Trailsman 66
Ruger Single Six
S&W Combat Masterpiece
Ruger Blackhawk .357

Pre CCW, concealed illegally:
NAA .22 LR

CCW, concealed

KelTec P-40
Kahr P9 with KelTec P3AT

CCW, open carry in the woods and on the ranch:

Ruger SS 2 3/4" Speed Six
Uberti .45 Peacemaker clone
Ruger Standard .22
KelTec P3AT always, front pocket

August 28, 2009, 11:56 AM
S&W .357
.380 Auto.

Still carry the big revolver when I can. Carry the .380 most of the time though.

It's pretty natural, I think, to move to something more comfortable after the new wears off. You should carry as big as you can hide/shoot... but remember, a .380 on you is better than a .45 sitting in the gun safe at home.

John Parker
August 28, 2009, 07:18 PM
Colt 1991, XD .45 compact, now a Glock 19. No regrets!

August 28, 2009, 11:07 PM
Ive just started carrying so i have a short list.
Taurus PT745 is my main carry due to its small size and lite weight and Large caliber ability.
Ive recently this past week started carrying my full sized PT1911 once in a while to break up my carry habits and not get bored.

But i have about 3 guns i plan to add and i want to end up with a 5 gun selection to choose the most fitting carry for that day.
1. My next short list purchase: micro 1911 9mm
2. Long list:Sig 238 .380
3. Long list Undecided: 38spl/PT709/S&W908

The more i carry the more i feel anything under a .380 is too small.And in saying that people think a ".22 is better than no gun" i think is kinda dumb as a .380 gun is no larger than a .22 so there is no reason not too carry the larger caliber.

Seven For Sure
August 28, 2009, 11:28 PM
I went from medium, to small, to medium-small for every day carry. Been carrying for about eight years. The largest gun I carry these days, all day at least, is a Glock 23. I usually go with a G27, Kahr of some sort or an M&Pc. I will pocket carry a PM9 or a 642 around the property sometimes but I like IWB better.

August 29, 2009, 12:27 AM
Started with 1911a1 .45acp
Then SP-101 .357mag
Then Ruger KP90DCO .45acp
Back to the 1911a1 .45acp
And currently a Ruger LCP .38+p

...but I am thinking strongly about a 5 shot S&W .44mag with some HP .44 special loads, 4" bbl and Keith style rounded grips in rosewood.


August 29, 2009, 08:35 PM
1. Ruger SP-101
2. J-frame Smith
3. Ruger SP-101 or J-frame Smith
4. Ruger SP-101 or Ruger GP-100
5. Ruger SP-101 or Springfield XD-9 5"
6. Ruger SP-101 or Springfield XD-9 3"

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