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Largest pistol you feel comfortable carrying in a "No show" state

Discussion in 'Handguns: General Discussion' started by Collector0311, Nov 2, 2012.

  1. Collector0311

    Collector0311 Well-Known Member

    I have been studying, as it is what comes with the curse of an over analytical mind, all of the myriad options available to me before I pull the trigger so to speak on my carry weapon. My question to you gentleman, is, what's the largest frame weapon you feel comfortable concealed carrying in all seasons (i.e. jacket/no jacket, pants, shorts, etc) while also not risking an inadvertent exposure. And what are some tricks of the trade that mitigate this tricky area from even becoming an issue.
    Sorry for the edit, nailed the send button on accident
    Last edited: Nov 2, 2012
  2. klyph

    klyph Well-Known Member

    Pardon my ignorance, what is a no show state?
  3. Collector0311

    Collector0311 Well-Known Member

    No sir, that's my fault. No open carry is what I was getting at. In which state, a concealed carrier who exposes their weapon has the possibility of being charged.
  4. TAKtical

    TAKtical Well-Known Member

    I used to carry a full size 1911 will full length rail. Now I carry a glock 17 or 21.
  5. Apachedriver

    Apachedriver Well-Known Member

    I normally carry a full size 1911 as well.

    The largest I ever carried concealed comfortably was a full size HK USP .45 at the 4 o'clock with a double mag holder on the 8 o'clock. The mags held 12 rounds a piece. I did that for about a year regardless of the season and I was able to carry without it printing.

    A quality gun belt and holster are key as well as dressing appropriately. And no, that doesn't mean wearing ill-fitting over-sized clothing. Just find regular brands that are cut to fit you with your carry style and weapon.
  6. Bobson

    Bobson Well-Known Member

    I carry a G19, and while I don't have to concern myself with whether the gun shows or not, I wear it IWB. I wouldn't want to carry anything larger than it, though. Maybe I need to change my wardrobe a bit (actually, I know I do), but I also know the G19 prints somewhat regularly.
  7. mljdeckard

    mljdeckard Well-Known Member

    A full-size, all-steel 1911.
  8. Collector0311

    Collector0311 Well-Known Member

    Seems as though I have let my assumptions get in the way of things. Looks like with some time and experience you can carry any full size pistol, just so long as you know the right combo of clothing, belts, and holsters.
  9. Rail Driver

    Rail Driver Well-Known Member

    Well, largest thing I've personally carried here in Florida has been the full size 1911 that I carry daily. I've owned 2 or 3 that were larger, but didn't carry them.
  10. Apachedriver

    Apachedriver Well-Known Member

    I should mention I'm 5'10" and 200 lbs. My older son is 6', 180 lbs, and he can conceal the same weapons even easier than I can even when he's wearing a long T-shirt. I can't get away with carrying those in a T-shirt but that's not my dress style anyhow.
  11. tarosean

    tarosean Well-Known Member

    I'm blessed to have wide shoulders and chest so I can conceal any handgun. Barrel length is the only contributing factor. A 10" barrel is not exactly draw friendly. LOL
  12. Teachu2

    Teachu2 Well-Known Member

    1st CCW was a 6" S&W N-frame. Carried full-size all-steel 1911s for three decades. My Glock 30 seems small (and light!) by comparison.

    I'm 6'3, 280.
  13. ugaarguy

    ugaarguy Moderator Staff Member

    With a good holster I can easily conceal a full size 1911 or a standard size M&P - so basically any full size service handgun. I did it all summer in GA wearing shorts and untucked polo shirts. If I'd lose my gut I could conceal them under untucked t shirts or even tucked in polos if using my Comp-Tac Minotaur (or a similar tuckable holster).
  14. bikerdoc

    bikerdoc Moderator

    I am small. 5'6" 140. In the hot VA summer I can conceal a 1911, or a 4" 357, under a T shirt. Reality is, I pocket carry a snub, or a 380.
  15. bannockburn

    bannockburn Well-Known Member

    About the closest I get to carrying anything full size would be something along the lines of a Colt Commander. More often than not though I would opt for a SIG P238 or a S&W Model 638 for CCW.
  16. hso

    hso Moderator Staff Member

    I carry a Hi Power in an IWB holster most of the time, but if we're forced to eliminate the possibility of the firearm being even momentarily exposed you're almost limited to pocket or "tunderwear" type deep concealment. In those cases I carry a P3AT or PF9.
  17. jwrowland77

    jwrowland77 Well-Known Member

    I think it all depends on the carriers build and frame.

    I am a short sawed off fellow, so the largest I feel comfortable carrying is a 9mm or .380. Most the time it's my Walther PPS 9mm though. If I could find a .40 that is small like my Walther I'd probably step up in caliber.
  18. Lawdawg45

    Lawdawg45 Well-Known Member

    Another vote for the 1911 here. I carry a 5 inch model in a Texas Yaqui style holster and it prints less than my Glock 19!

  19. Tinpig

    Tinpig Well-Known Member

    For me, in a definitely no-show state, it depends entirely on the season.
    In the winter, when I'm wearing two hooded sweatshirts and a jacket, I can carry a 1911 or BHP in an M7 shoulder holster without problem. In the summer, wearing just a shirt, it's usually a .380 Sig P238 in a high belt holster with my shirt untucked.
    All three single-action pistols handle essentially the same, i.e. cocked and locked.

  20. 56hawk

    56hawk Well-Known Member

    I have a S&W 500ES on my permit. It's surprisingly easy to conceal with a hip holster and a slightly baggy shirt.

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