learning experiences on 1st day ccw


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Mrcymstr
April 15, 2012, 09:37 PM
Yesterday was my first day of carrying and today was my second. I learned quite a few things.

1) I somehow got lucky and picked a holster and belt that works pretty well on my second try (blackhawk cqc serpa and bison designs heavy duty last chance) so listening to all y'all on this board helped me pick up on my needs and wants much easier than guess and check.

2) I'm 6'3" 300 lbs so getting in and out of your average car has always been difficult for me But add in an 8 inch long 2 lb chunk of steel to the hip and it gets even more difficult and you must tread carefully

3) finding good concealment isn't easy for anyone!!!!!

4) I carry owb at 3:30 ish and with a slight forward cant.... I can no longer use my strongside back pocket (I was at a convenience store and struggled for a long time getting my wallet out certainly showing to everyone in line behind me)

These are my big lessons today so what are some of y'alls first day "aha" and "oops" moments?

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musicman10_1
April 15, 2012, 09:57 PM
In a few weeks you won't be so ultra aware - if you will - and things will become more natural and comfortable. Eventually you will feel more comfortable carrying than when you are not carrying.

writerinmo
April 15, 2012, 10:05 PM
I started with OWB in a Don Hume JIT slide holster, eventually went IWB for the reason you mentioned, the dreaded "wallet flash". What I hate is if I go in someplace where I have to leave my pistol in the car, I feel like my pants are gonna fall down and expose something else...:eek:

barstoolguru
April 15, 2012, 10:12 PM
what no wally world walk? it kind of scares me knowing all the new CCWers are walking around in there while I am tring to get some tp

Mrcymstr
April 15, 2012, 10:14 PM
I wish it was just a quick wallet flash.... I am not opposed to OC so it wouldn't have bothered me but I literally could not get my wallet out I hadn't noticed how much of my muzzle was over the opening to my pocket. I am not exaggerating when I say it took probably 1.5 minutes to get my wallet out... and standing at a gas station counter is not where I'd like to be getting nervous and struggling to work around my sidearm....

Mrcymstr
April 15, 2012, 10:15 PM
Oh no I hit walmart first thing.... the HCP isn't valid until you pass through the front doors of walmart... :-P .... but to be honest it wasnt planned like that it was simply incidental and I kind of chuckled when it dawned on me.

19-3Ben
April 15, 2012, 10:46 PM
My lesson from when I first started CCWing was that at first, I felt like I was carrying a giant sign that flashes "I'm carrying a gun" in neon. I was especially aware when I walked near police officers because I thought for sure they'd be able to see my gun printing. After a few trips I realized that nobody cares, nobody notices, and nobody is looking.
I also stopped constantly putting my hand on my gun to make sure it was still right where it belongs!

So that's the real lesson. When you get comfortable (but not complacent) enough with carrying that it becomes an everyday part of your life, you've made it.

animator
April 16, 2012, 12:33 AM
If you ever go out somewhere public while not carrying, pay attention to how LITTLE attention everyone pays to you. Not many people are out there "looking" for anyone carrying.


So the next time you go out and are carrying, people are still going to be the same as before. They still won't know, and won't know to look.


The only time people begin to look or take notice, is when you do something to draw attention to it, such as adjusting it, or moving in a way that exposes it.

northark147
April 17, 2012, 01:09 AM
Being a skinny dude, even IWB Ive had to switch my wallet to the other pocket... The muzzle of mine might as well be in my back pocket... Other than that after finally getting a belt and Holster that agree with me Ive no prolems..

Carne Frio
April 17, 2012, 01:27 AM
Map for the Walmart Walk:

http://img853.imageshack.us/img853/4476/wallyworldmap.gif

Twiki357
April 17, 2012, 02:36 AM
My biggest problem when I first got my CCW was that I had never noticed how many places have those darn "No Firearms" signs. The worst part is that the stores that have them are the ones where I have what seems like a five mile hike back to the car to comply.

herkyguy
April 17, 2012, 08:47 AM
"nobody cares, nobody notices, and nobody is looking."

This was the biggest lesson for me as well. I thought it was obvious for the first few weeks until I grew comfortable with it. That and figuring out that no particular style of carry is best for everyone...body type has A LOT to do with it. It's a matter of trial and error.

supham
April 17, 2012, 09:30 AM
I carried mine for 3 days with no ammo making sure at the end of the day the hammer was still up.

coalman
April 17, 2012, 02:11 PM
No one notices like you do, or like you think they do.

Lee D
April 17, 2012, 02:20 PM
after i found it a bit tricky to grab my wallet and not flash a bit of the holster/gun, i swapped my wallet to the left back pocket and its been carried there ever since

tyeo098
April 17, 2012, 02:23 PM
I carried mine for 3 days with no ammo making sure at the end of the day the hammer was still up.
Kind of defeats the purpose, but whatever floats your boat.

I guess that was just a safety check so that you knew everything was functioning OK?

after i found it a bit tricky to grab my wallet and not flash a bit of the holster/gun, i swapped my wallet to the left back pocket and its been carried there ever since

My wallet has always been left side back pocket. I carry an assisted-opener in my front right... I'm right handed, why would I tie up my weapon hand to get my wallet? That seems counter-intuitive.

animator
April 17, 2012, 02:55 PM
My biggest problem when I first got my CCW was that I had never noticed how many places have those darn "No Firearms" signs. The worst part is that the stores that have them are the ones where I have what seems like a five mile hike back to the car to comply.
How enforceable are those signs in AZ?

In TX, there's only one specific sign that actually means anything regarding the law and CHL holders. Any other "no handguns" signs don't apply to CHL holders. The store can ask you to leave, and you have to comply, but otherwise, there's no legal ramifications for carrying anywhere that is marked with one of those generic no gun signs...

ForumSurfer
April 17, 2012, 03:09 PM
No one notices like you do, or like you think they do.

I agree. Even if you do have a "bulge," so does the guy in line behind you with a giant Droid in his pocket or on his hip...or the guy with a knife clip sticking out and 20lbs of keys in his pocket...or they guy with $4 in quarters in his pocket or any number of people with a whole bunch of crap in their pocket or on their hip. Heck, most pocket 9's and 380's are getting to be smaller than your phone's dimensions (width excluded). And of course, there's our bodies...love handles and other areas on some of us just "bulge." You can't seriously know if a slight bulge is a cell phone, a kidney bag or a love handle. :)

supham
April 17, 2012, 03:20 PM
Kind of defeats the purpose, but whatever floats your boat.

I guess that was just a safety check so that you knew everything was functioning OK?


No it served it purpose perfectly. I had walked around this world for 40 years without carrying, I thought I could wait 3 more days. Wanted to make sure I was confident in my rig and not shoot my ass off.

GBExpat
April 17, 2012, 05:51 PM
I just checked my files and found that I missed my "anniversary" ... my first Commonwealth of Virginia Concealed Weapon Permit was issued on 14Apr75 ... 37 years ago ... and, yes, I am feeling O-L-D at this moment. :)

I initially carried a 9x17 Walther PPK/s in a Roy's Leather Goods (of Magnolia, Arkansas ... anyone remember the great leather he produced?) pancake holster. The holster kept the pistol tight against my kidney so I did not have work about printing ... at least, not after the first few weeks when I thought that EVERYONE was aware of the thing. So long as I had a sports coat or jacket on I was G2G.

I still have the holster but the pistol I sold to a friend ages ago.

One on my Eye-Opener moments occurred when a particularly unreasonable fellow started swinging on me in a bar that I ran. The pistol that I was carrying that night (Colt Combat Commander) was just weighing me down, y'know? Good thing he had had a few drinks so I was able to settle the situation in short fashion.

Shoobee
April 17, 2012, 05:57 PM
I never never carry a wallet in a BACK pocket.

Always in a front one.

Back pockets are too easy to pick-pocket anyway.

If you don't believe it just go anywhere in the Middle East and walk around a bazaar, and the little arab kids will pick-pocket you clean in no time.

So you should move your wallet to one of your front pockets anyway.

Shoobee
April 17, 2012, 06:02 PM
Any high quality stadium jacket breast pocket makes a great ccw carry location.

You can put a couple of loaded magazines in a pocket on the opposite side to counter-weigh the pistol.

As far as anyone knows you could be carrying horseshoes. Right?

abq87120
April 18, 2012, 12:06 AM
Lol. We all carried for the first time once. I switched to a tuckable IWB, a Galco Tuck-N-Go for my G23 from Optics Planet on a Looper Law Enforcement belt. It works at 2:00, 3:00 and 4:00. After a while, getting strapped in the AM is like putting on underwear. You put it on and forget about it.

TarDevil
April 18, 2012, 10:27 AM
I carried on my property for about six weeks waiting for my background check...so much that I occasionally started for town before remembering I had a sidearm and had to turn back. Now I don't think about it, aside from the back pain it gives me.

pockets
April 18, 2012, 10:46 AM
I never never carry a wallet in a BACK pocket. Always in a front one. Back pockets are too easy to pick-pocket anyway.
Same here. My wallet has been in my front left pocket since around 1965 or so.
I've never found it comfortable to sit on a wallet anyway...even an empty one!
My pistol is usually carried IWB right side....with nothing in my back pockets but some fine lint. ;)


.

Manson
April 18, 2012, 10:57 AM
OP- I also no longer carry my wallet in my back pocket for that reason. And as has been said in a little while you won't even notice the weapon

And this is the first I've heard of the Walmart walk! Very funny.

19-3Ben
April 18, 2012, 11:44 AM
That and figuring out that no particular style of carry is best for everyone...

Yup. When I first started carrying, it was IWB all the way. That way, I knew the gun was as concealed as possible. After a while, I realized that I don't particularly like IWB holsters. I use good quality OWB holsters and have not had a stick of trouble with them.

Elkins45
April 18, 2012, 01:37 PM
Scoot your holster forward just a bit? I carry my wallet in my right pocket and don't have much trouble with my gun interfering, but I do carry a Kahr most days when I'm carrying IWB.

In the winter when I sometimes carry a full-sized 10mm S&W I use a holster with less forward cant so the barrel more or less parallels my inseam.

You can get obsessive about this stuff...did I happen to mention that all of the holsters I use are handmade by me? You would be surprised how easy it is to make a holster that works perfectly just for you, and how little trial and error it takes to get it right.

crracer_712
April 18, 2012, 01:45 PM
Never really thought about the wallet, since I've carried it in my left rear pocket since I started carrying it. However, I haven't noticed anything particularly difficult in getting my cell phone out of my right rear pocket. Of course I'm not carrying a 2 lb gun either, so I'm sure my holsters are smaller.

smalls
April 18, 2012, 02:16 PM
My wallet's always been in my left back pocket, but what really threw me off when I first started carrying was putting my keys on the opposite side belt loop, so that they wouldn't get in the way of a draw. Took me months to get used to it!

Elm Creek Smith
April 18, 2012, 02:33 PM
Early in my CCW days I took my family to Denny's late one night, and the hostess took us to a booth right across from a table full of the local constabulary. When I sat down, there was a rather loud "thunk" as the butt of my Model 13-3 whacked the back of the bench through my photographer's vest. I ignored it despite the snickers from the LEOs and my grandson's "What was that? When the officers finished up, one of the hung back to say, "It happens to all of us. Might want to move it forward a touch," before following his compatriots. Ever since, I've carried my primary at 3:00. My secondary is in my left front pocket or cross-draw at 9:30.

ECS

Paris
April 18, 2012, 11:43 PM
I'm an office dwelling city slicker. Six days a week I am in a button up, long sleeve shirt with a pocket and spend a good part of that time at work in my office. I don't carry a wallet and keep four cards in my front shirt pocket (DL, CHP, AmEx, MC). I rarely carry cash and if I do it's in a money clip which stays in my front right trouser pocket. I absolutely hate carrying items in my trouser pockets and avoid doing so whenever I can.

My Kahr MK40 Elite rides under my left arm in an Ultra Concealment Shoulder Holster (http://www.gunnersecurity.com/products-page/shoulder/conceal-shoulder-holster-right-handed). I wear the holster over my undershirt and under my dress shirt (naturally).

For me this presents the best option for concealed carry with the least chance of being found out. I can sit, stand, walk, run, reach, bend over, carry things, etc with pretty much a zero chance of the firearm being affected or noticed by anyone. As I stated before, I am an office dweller and although my company (Fortune 100) is OK with concealed carry (right in the handbook - they won't ask about it and don't want to know about it) being "outed" would not be acceptable for me.

My smartphone rides in a belt holster most of the time and my Kershaw is clipped to my wasteband and rides inside my trousers but outside my dress shirt - you never see it.

And that folks is all the "gear" I can bring myself to carry day to day. I don't know how some of you do it, two, three knives, maybe more, light, full size gun, bucket of ammo, George Costanza size wallet, etc, etc. I just can't do it.

Paris
April 18, 2012, 11:48 PM
And to address people "looking". It's all in your head and will go away. I have never, to my knowledge, been discovered or been remotely close to being discovered.

If you're banging your gun into things or flashing it to get your wallet, in my opinion, you don't understand what concealed means.

mrvco
April 19, 2012, 01:36 AM
How often has anyone here been able to tell that someone else is CC'ing? I've seen a lot of guys dressed like they would be carrying, but I haven't seen any proof so far.

iLikeOldgunsIlikeNewGuns
April 19, 2012, 08:31 PM
Map for the Walmart Walk:

http://img853.imageshack.us/img853/4476/wallyworldmap.gif

That is hilarious x-D


I vaguely remember when I first started carrying, THR definitely helped! I felt like it must be obvious at first, but even my girlfriend couldn't tell without touching the spot where the handle would be. It's true, at this point I feel weird when not carrying. I stopped worrying about people noticing long ago, and no one ever has, even close friends who have no idea :) A good belt and holster take just about all of the weight out of the equation, and I'm fortunate in that my body type allows me to IWB a full 1911 even while driving with no discomfort and it just vanishes in my clothes.

Now I just play the "I wonder who else is carrying" game. I don't make it obvious, but when in public areas, I scan for who i think would be most likely to carry. Purely to pass the time for amusement/entertainment :) Many folks are obviously not! Saggy pants and t-shirt scream "I'm not armed".

Almost forgot: It's pretty bad for your sciatic nerve (all up and down your back/spine) to sit on your wallet constantly, especially while driving. I stopped carrying my wallet in my back pocket some time in my teens, also for the pick-pocket reason. I prefer cargo pants and overalls for the extra pockets. my wallet's in my left cargo pocket with pants, and front chest pocket next to cigs when wearing overalls, either way I will immediately feel it if the weight of my wallet shifts or suddenly disappears.... and it's comfy and doesn't show my carry :)

Yosemite Sam
April 21, 2012, 04:27 AM
This deserves re-posting:

http://i60.photobucket.com/albums/h8/mrjickles/THR/handgun_spotting.jpg

Elkins45
April 21, 2012, 06:57 AM
I'm an office dwelling city slicker. Six days a week I am in a button up, long sleeve shirt with a pocket and spend a good part of that time at work in my office.
My Kahr MK40 Elite rides under my left arm in an Ultra Concealment Shoulder Holster (http://www.gunnersecurity.com/products-page/shoulder/conceal-shoulder-holster-right-handed). I wear the holster over my undershirt and under my dress shirt (naturally).


So you have to unbutton the front of your dress shirt to access the gun? That seems like an awfully slow draw, almost like not having a gun at all in a situation where you have no warning.

Paris
April 21, 2012, 09:13 AM
So you have to unbutton the front of your dress shirt to access the gun? That seems like an awfully slow draw, almost like not having a gun at all in a situation where you have no warning.

So you're drawing a conclusion based on an assumption which you can't very? Got it. I'm willing to bet you're a flying spaghetti monster worshiper, too.

Elkins45
April 21, 2012, 09:31 AM
So you're drawing a conclusion based on an assumption which you can't very? Got it. I'm willing to bet you're a flying spaghetti monster worshiper, too.

Wow--relax dude! That's why I asked the question, but perhaps I should rephrase it so as not to somehow offend you. Here, I will try again:

How do you access the weapon? Do you have to unbutton your shirt to access it? How long does it take to draw?

Better?

Paris
April 21, 2012, 09:37 AM
Wow--relax dude! That's why I asked the question, but perhaps I should rephrase it so as not to somehow offend you. Here, I will try again:

How do you access the weapon? Do you have to unbutton your shirt to access it? How long does it take to draw?

Better?

Actually you didn't ask a question, you made a statement in the guise of the question to support your next statement which was the actual point of your post, and condescending at that, which is why you received a condescending reply.

Don't kid yourself, I'm relaxed. :)

Elkins45
April 21, 2012, 12:17 PM
Actually you didn't ask a question, you made a statement in the guise of the question to support your next statement which was the actual point of your post, and condescending at that, which is why you received a condescending reply.

Don't kid yourself, I'm relaxed. :)
You're reading a confrontational tone into my post that wasn't intended. Why would someone be condescending about a topic like holster selection? I assure you there's nothing highbrow or at all elite about how I carry mine.

I asked a question the second time. I would be appreciative if you would answer it because I genuinely am curious how quickly the gun can be accessed through a buttoned dress shirt. It seems to me that it would be very slow to access, but I thought that perhaps there is a special technique or something I didn't see on the product webpage.

I'm perfectly happy to be wrong in this assumption but I have no additional information to go on.

Paris
April 22, 2012, 10:48 AM
That seems like an awfully slow draw, almost like not having a gun at all in a situation where you have no warning.

That is your statement. You had no interest in learning anything until you were confronted and now you're backpedaling under the guise of genuine interest.

ClayInTX
April 22, 2012, 04:35 PM
Some time ago I started carrying my DL, CHL, and insurance card which has my SSN on it in my shirt pocket in a very small folder. I also have a list of the credit card 800 numbers there.

Wearing two-pocket western shirts is a big help; glasses one side and licenses the other.

My wallet is still carried in my back pocket but contains no personal ID or memorabilia and the credit cards can be cancelled in minutes if picked.

I have keys, phone, and an LCR in front pockets so the wallet has nowhere to go but a back pocket.

I actually did the Wally Walk and learned no one notices or cares. However, around here even the soccer moms are likely carrying.
.

Elkins45
April 22, 2012, 11:39 PM
That is your statement. You had no interest in learning anything until you were confronted and now you're backpedaling under the guise of genuine interest.
I actually do want to know how you can draw quickly from under a fully buttoned shirt, but it is clear you do not wish to answer. There is nothing further to be gained from this exchange, so I will remove myself from the conversation.

Feel free to declare yourself the winner.

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