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Different Carry Techniques

Discussion in 'Handguns: Holsters and Accessories' started by TimmyXD, Jan 16, 2011.

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  1. TimmyXD

    TimmyXD Member

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    Just curious how people around here carry, when im around the house I typically carry OWB with a BLACKHAWK! SERPA paddle holster and when im out, I use an IWB hoslter in the small of my back. Just curious how others do it, maybe there is something I haven't thought of that may make it a little easier to carry or conceal. Also, I am a lefty but find that using a right handed IWB holster for the small of my back feels more natrually for a draw. Is this just my preference or do others find this more helpful also? Thanks everyone!
     
  2. Sam1911

    Sam1911 Moderator

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    OWB or IWB.

    Small of the back carry has many serious negatives, but if you understand them all clearly, and can eliminate them as problems for you (not ignore them ... FIX them somehow), then ... whatever works for you.
     
  3. pitsmile

    pitsmile Member

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    I do not carry (NJ resident) - Can you elaborate on these issues?
     
  4. Sam1911

    Sam1911 Moderator

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    Sure. SOB carry has several big draw-backs.

    1) Injury: You are placing a bulky metal object against your spine, or kidneys. A fall onto, or blow against, that gun almost certainly will cause more pain and injury than it otherwise would have. If the fall is hard enough, it could do permanent damage. A gun on your hip (3:30-4:00 position) doesn't cause that concern.

    2) Discomfort: If you sit at a desk, or drive anywhere, that gun is going to be very painful to sit on for long.

    3) Printing: If you always stand straight up, you may conceal your gun well this way. The moment you sit on a bench or other backless seat, squat, bend, twist, reach for something, etc. the small of your back stretches your clothing tight in that area. You WILL print, and print worse than any other location you might carry. If you carry under a jacket or un-tucked shirt, SOB carry causes the outer garment to hang up on the gun and many folks who've tried it found that their jacket would creep up and begin to tuck itself in behind the gun as they moved around -- eventually leaving the gun completely exposed with the cover garment bunched up on top of it or even behind it.

    4) Draw: Drawing from an SOB holster invites a tremendous safety violation. It is difficult to execute a draw that does not encourage/require you to sweep your own waist/hips/kidneys/pelvic girdle with the muzzle as you move the gun around in front of you. There are two types of SOB holster -- one butt-forward, one butt-back like an exaggerated OWB holster. The butt-forward version is much worse for this as you're trying to rotate the gun as well as draw it forward. Many ranges and trainers do not allow SOBs just for this reason. When you're trying to grab your gun, disengage the safety, and get on target for a fast shot, no portion of that operation should put your own body in front of the muzzle!

    (Of course, no operation EVER should put part of your body in front of your own loaded gun ... but especially grabbing for a defensive sidearm in a moment of panic.)

    If the OP is using an IWB as an opposite side SOB, then it is a butt-forward orientation. The worst possible variant.

    Hope that helps!
     
  5. TimmyXD

    TimmyXD Member

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    Thanks for the input Sam I have definatley put thought into all 4 of the issues above one of the reasons i was trying to get a feel for what others where doing for holstering. With an IWB @ the hip I find it more difficult to keep the bulge concealed. Thanks!
     
  6. Iggy

    Iggy Member

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    I'm betting the "bulge" is more noticeable to you than the sheeple around you.
     
  7. BullfrogKen

    BullfrogKen Moderator Emeritus

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    Yes, it most certainly is. And for the record, I hate seeing that term used here.


    Not all holsters are built the same.

    A quality holster, with a quality belt, will conceal quite well under the most minimal of clothing when carrying IWB.
     
  8. daehawc

    daehawc Member

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    also, dont carry at the hip, move it forward to the 2 oclock position and you will find it conceals much better.
     
  9. Frozen North

    Frozen North Member

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    That Serpa is a great holster, but it sticks out more than most.
     
  10. Sam1911

    Sam1911 Moderator

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    Sort of depends on the gun, and on the GUT. :)

    A j-frame or Kel-Tec, Khar, etc. might conceal well at appendix carry position, but a 5" 1911 or other larger gun will probably be very uncomfortable there when you go to sit down. It also requires a bit more dressing around the gun. For example, you can't do an untucked shirt or jacket left open at the front if your gun is carried forward like that.

    And, of course, if your tummy pokes out more than your small-of-back does when you're bent over, you might find that your gun looks a bit like a lump on a beach ball. :uhoh:

    :D
     
  11. TimmyXD

    TimmyXD Member

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    I find the comfort at the 2 o'clock positition an issue.
    do you have a specific brand or holster that you find conceal's better? I typically use the Blackhawk! inside the pants holster.
     
  12. Sam1911

    Sam1911 Moderator

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    Probably the very best IWBs are something along the lines of Milt Sparks' Versa Max II design.

    A lot of folks like the Crossbreed Supertuck style.

    But it is hugely dependent on individual preference. Somewhat like what kind of shoes feel good on your feet.

    All depends on your build, your type and size of gun, your clothing styles, and lots of little undefinables.

    Everyone can list your favorites but that won't help you narrow it down much.

    A good belt is a much easier pick. Get a REAL gun belt. Like something from Beltman, Wilderness Tactical, 5.11, or someone else who knows what a gun belt needs to be.

    It should be thick, and stiff. I use a 1-3/4" Wilderness "Instructor" model and a leather belt made by a friend and fellow shooter that is 1-1/2" wide and well over 1/4" thick. They really support the gun's weight.

    You can carry in a so-so holster, but you'll never find much success with a cheapie "men's department" belt.
     
  13. MikePaiN

    MikePaiN Member

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    I carry the same way and in the same place all the time. ~1oc appendixItW
     
  14. Vern Humphrey

    Vern Humphrey Member

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    I would say most people who carry regularly carry in a waist holster, strong side. Probably the most practical and concealable strong side holster is the IWB (Inside the Waistband) style. The most concealable holster is a "tuckable" IWB, where you can tuck your shirt between your pants and holster.

    I design and make my own holsters, and here's what I carry. This holster is tuckable or can be carried either as a straight IWB simply by not tucking in the shirt. It can also be carried outside the waistband -- the Kydex belt loops are spread so you can see the belt slots for OWB carry.

    The holster has high back leather -- so you can carry it directly against the skin. I run Sno-Seal into the holster to keep it from sweating through in hot weather and strenuous activity.

    Note the leather cam on the back -- this engages the safety lever of my M1911 and holds it positively engaged.

    Also look at the forward (on your right) Kydex belt loop and note the J-shape. That little bend on the end clicks in place when you slide the belt loop over your belt. To take the holster off, you disengage those little bends and just pull up -- it's as easy to put on and take off as a paddle holster, and a lot more concealable.
     

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    Last edited: Jan 17, 2011
  15. 451 Detonics

    451 Detonics Member

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    Thank you...I have always seen that term as a uppity form of racism.

    I carry OWB almost exclusively for my primary. A BUG may be in pocket or Kramer Confidential type t-shirt. I have been CC'ing since I was 18 (soon will be 52) and I have yet to find a more comfortable all day carry than OWB for daily use. It is easy to conceal as well as long as you are willing to give up your skin tight muscle shirts that are all the rage in catalogs like International Male.
     
  16. pitsmile

    pitsmile Member

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    Sam - Thanks a lot for the input, I had always been intrigued by SOB holsters and thought they concealed well (for the future, when I'm on NYPD and can carry...NJ :cuss:) But now I can picture those issues and appreciate your time discussing them.
     
  17. hirundo82

    hirundo82 Member

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    I probably use more carry methods than I should, but I find having a variety of carry methods is the best way to increase the situations when I can carry and I subscribe to the opinion that having a gun on you, even if it is slow to draw, is better than not having one.

    The methods I use regularly are belt (OWB), shoulder holster, ankle, and pocket. My primary is in a belt holster 80-90% of the time (varies by season), with the remainder in a shoulder holster (typically under a loose sweater). Ankle carry and pocket carry are primarily for a BUG, but sometimes I'll use one of these methods (mostly pocket carry) when that is the only way for me to conceal.
     
  18. NMGonzo

    NMGonzo Member

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    Depends on what I am wearing.

    But ankle carry for me is a no-go.
     
  19. Zundfolge

    Zundfolge Member

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    This is more true than most of us know.

    Most people just do not see guns.

    Some of y'all may know Standing Wolf ... not sure if he posts here much anymore, but I happen to know him in RL and he's not by any stretch a "big" man but he open carries a S&W 629 (stainless steel N-Frame .44 mag) everywhere he goes. He's mentioned the many times he's been talking to someone and the subject of guns comes up and they didn't realize he was packing, and his piece is a shiny, huge "hog leg".

    The way most of us get "made" is by fiddling with our rig, not printing. So a good solid holster and a good solid belt will do more to keep your concealed piece concealed as it doesn't move around and need to be adjusted.

    I prefer a dual clip style leather IWB holster because the gun doesn't rock forward and back (and thus need constant readjustment). I carry at 3 o'clock, then my arm covers the gun plus I can draw while seated and I'm not sitting on my gun.

    As for SOB rigs (and even 4-5 o'clock carry) I think people THINK they conceal better because when they stand in front of a mirror not moving, the gun is well hidden. Try bending over to reach a can of soup off the bottom shelf at the grocery store with one of those placements and you'll be amazed how obvious it becomes that you're packing.
     
  20. Sam1911

    Sam1911 Moderator

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    And, then stand up after your shirt rode up on it -- and discover that the whole tail of your cover garment is now tucked in behind it and the ONLY person who can't see your fancy new grips ... is YOU! :eek:
     
  21. JTQ

    JTQ Member

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    I was stopped at a light one day when a guy on a sportbike pulls up next to me. He is wearing medical scrubs and a small of the back holster with his 1911. Both holster and 1911, were in plain view as reached forward for the handle bars.
     
  22. Frozen North

    Frozen North Member

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    I have found another problem with SOB. The gun seems to hook on everything! It will snag chair backs as I get up, door handles in stores as I brush past them, and even the door frame of my car. If the holster you are using has a thumb break or other form of active retention, this is just an inconvenience. If the holster is an open top, the gun becomes very likely to end up on the ground.
     
  23. archigos

    archigos Member

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    I'll admit - I carry with a cheapie "men's department" belt, and do find more of a bulge than I would like with most attire (Comp-Tac/Minotaur MTAC and S&W M&P 40c).
    Could you (or anybody) elaborate on what characteristics a good gun belt possesses and how they are useful? I've long looked at them but have not been able to justify the money on something I can't (online) see, feel, or understand.
     
  24. Vern Humphrey

    Vern Humphrey Member

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    First of all, stiff -- it resists bending. Next, low stretch. Finally, long life.

    Try a quality gunbelt and you'll see what we mean.
     
  25. Cosmoline

    Cosmoline Member

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    Open yourself to more options, and don't be afraid to try them out. Carrying does NOT begin and end at the belt line. There are pocket holsters, shoulder holsters, ankle holsters, bag holsters, deep concealment rigs, and even underwear holsters. These options can greatly increase your CCW flexibility and get you to carry more often in better comfort with less concern that a gust of wind will give you away.
     
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