for iwb carry.. strong side draw, or cross draw?


harmon rabb
February 4, 2010, 03:08 PM
which do you prefer and why? i'm still trying to decide.

sometimes i like cross draw with my primary carry, because i will then carry my LCP or 442 as a BUG in my strong side pocket. this way i have access to a gun on either side of me. however, it does seem like, in some situations, it might take longer to draw the primary gun this way.

thoughts, anyone?

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David E
February 4, 2010, 03:20 PM
For woods carry, when the gun is usually a larger one, I prefer cross draw. Of course, that's an OWB rig.

For CCW, a strongside IWB/OWB rules the day, worn just behind the strong side hip. I can draw one handed and keep that side away from any identified threat.

February 4, 2010, 03:32 PM
I carry cross draw daily cc unless I am out in the woods with a magnum and then carry strong side.....

February 4, 2010, 03:38 PM
There is no faster draw or less easily blocked/obstructed draw than strong-side carry at the waist. IWB is a little slower than OWB, generally, but both are far more preferable than any other carry style -- IF your circumstances allow. The benefits of the traditional holster position are almost always worth the trade-offs in comfort or (perceived) concealability.

If you spend a lot of time driving and wish for the fastest access to your gun, you might want a cross-draw or shoulder holster. But you really need to practice (carefully) your draw as it is very easy to sweep yourself or others while drawing.

Curious why you'd carry your primary on your weak side and your backup on your strong side. Seems like you're driving on your doughnut spare and carrying your good tire in the trunk! :D


texas bulldog
February 4, 2010, 05:31 PM
i split the difference. appendix (1:00) carry. it is easily the most concealable and comfortable spot i have found.

harmon rabb
February 4, 2010, 05:33 PM
Curious why you'd carry your primary on your weak side and your backup on your strong side. Seems like you're driving on your doughnut spare and carrying your good tire in the trunk!

well, i wouldn't want to have to draw and fire my backup with my left hand. :o

Erik M
February 4, 2010, 06:12 PM
I prefer appendix carry if I have my smaller .380 on board, If I am toting a larger piece such as a commander sized 1911 I prefer strong side at 4-5 o' clock.

February 4, 2010, 11:55 PM
Appendix. For me it is faster.

February 4, 2010, 11:59 PM
strong side... 4-5 o'clock.... every time, every gun... or pocket carry.

February 6, 2010, 08:07 AM
Just thought I would ask a question on this subject. Wouldn't a crossdraw carry make you vulnerable to an attack from either side? If the attach is from the gun side they can grab at your gun or gun hand as you draw. If the attack is from the other side they can pin the arm of your drawing hand and make it difficult to draw if not impossible.

But with a strong side carry you at least have the option of turning your weak side toward the attacker keeping your gun and gun hand somewhat protected.

Unfortunately I live in a state where CC is a dream so I have no experience or training. I'm just making an observation here.


February 6, 2010, 08:48 AM

For someone who doesn't carry, that's pretty observant. Yes, that's one of the big concerns with both cross-draw and shoulder holsters.

Most folks who use them plan out their violent encounters so they have time to draw before the attacker reaches them.


Well, that's the theory anyway... :D


February 6, 2010, 08:50 AM
Gotta agree with Sam and have the opinion that cross draw for primary carry subjects you to having your access blocked or your draw jammed against your body if you're within bad breath range and tangled up with your attacker.

Cross draw could be the quickest and most comfortable carry while driving in the car since it allows you to reach the weapon more easily, but it does lend itself to sweeping your legs or lower torso if you don't practice enough times to avoid it automatically. I find that carrying a Commander size pistol in an IWB at right rear is comfortable enough.

Try different carry options and find out for yourself.

harmon rabb
February 6, 2010, 09:18 AM
DWS, for a guy living in a commie state, that's a pretty observant point :D i hadn't quite thought of it like that, however, it's very valid, and i don't think i'll carry my primary in a cross draw position anymore.

February 6, 2010, 09:23 AM
Strong side, 4 o'clock IWB allows me to carry everything from a S&W J frame or KT PF-9 to a SIG P220 comfortably with almost zero printing.

February 6, 2010, 11:13 AM
I experimented with IWB crossdraw for a second weapon; the results were not all that satisfactory. Before that experiment, and since, if I carry a second weapon on the hip opposite my usual hip, I use a normal rig for a conventional draw. But, then, I don't have a "weak" hand/side.

As DWS indicated, having weapons on opposite sides of the body requires thought regarding what actually happens in real street encounters. If both are worn on the belt, it may be better to keep both weapons near the same spot, so both can be defended without dividing one's attention between separate areas.

February 6, 2010, 11:30 AM
Put me down in the Appendix-IWB camp as comfortable, concealable and very quick.

February 6, 2010, 03:49 PM
You're usually better off with IWB/OWB strong side carry. Crossdraw also is not conducive to weapons retention if you're in a hand to hand situation. Safety issues as mentioned are also the reason many LE agencies don't allow officers to carry that way. Large gun, moreso with along barrel, is a good candidate for cross draw as David E pointed out.

James T Thomas
February 7, 2010, 02:27 PM
I have carried; at one time, crossdraw with a Commander. I felt the grip safety gave insurance against an intentioned shot in my femoral artery or through my femur, or "down in the valley."
Similar, are the many left arm wounds that have happened from the "sweeping" draw from shoulder holsters.
I now carry on the hip.

Now, you have a safteyless revolver. Just grab and shoot. Shoot!

The posts about weapon retention, that is struggling with someone, his hand perhaps on your weapon are something else to consider.

If you would choose a belt, strong side holster, they are available to give your gun a but forward cant for easier withdrawl. Particularly when seated.

February 8, 2010, 02:19 PM
I like appendix/cross-draw for one reason: when it has to be tucked in under a shirt (i.e., at work) - with my off hand I can grab and lift my shirt high and clear and with my gun hand make my draw. When tucked IWB in the strong side, my gun hand has to pull the shirt free and high so it doesn't slip back down and then go back to the waist for the gun.

Come to think of it, there's another reason. I'm 6'4" and a lefty, and sometimes when getting into a car, guns carried strong-side dig into my side rather painfully.


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