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Gun shy about carrying concealed

Discussion in 'General Gun Discussions' started by fistful, Aug 28, 2004.

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  1. fistful

    fistful member

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    I live in Missouri, which just got a CC law. I don't even have a concealment gun right now, so I'm not sure if I'll be able to start packing anytime soon. When the day comes that I start to carry, however, I think I'll be awfully nervous about having a negligent discharge. With a 1911, cocked and locked, in a holster that covers the manual safety, and with a retaining strap under the hammer, I'll feel ok. But I can't see being comfortable with some minimalist holster. When I used to have a Para 13.45, I had a Bianchi Accumold holster that always managed to disengage the safety. I could see the same thing happening with a belt slide, or Mexican carry. Maybe I'm backwards, but the DA autos and revolvers seem even less safe than the 1911.

    Am I being silly?
     
  2. loose cannon

    loose cannon Member

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    this is just my opinion but to me 1911s arent safe enough. but my best friend loves his amt hardballer. it just depends on you and youre knowledge
    and comfort level. i belive da only autos and revolvers are the safest guns going. but thats me.i read somewhere that a journalist saw a texas ranger
    carrying a cocked and locked 1911 and asked him,"isnt that dangerous"?
    and the ranger said sure its dangerous if it wasnt i wouldnt carry it.btw im a missourian whos been legaly packing a s&w642 for months no probs .im certain that unless i exert 10-12lbs of force on the trigger it wont go bang.
    and i wont do that till its aimed and time for me to fire. safe enough for me.
    hope this helps
     
  3. JPM70535

    JPM70535 Member

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    you have touched on one of the most debated topics among gun toters, the relative safety of a cocked and locked 1911 style pistol versus DAO autos, revolvers, and the Glock style (safe action, so called)

    No argument can be made that the 1911 pistol, carried in a duty type holster with full trigger coverage and a retaining strap under the hammer is not completely safe, because it certainly is. Unfortunately we seldom carry concealed in a duty holster here in Florida where T-Shirts and shorts prevail.

    In theory, the 1911 is perfectly safe to carry cocked and locked as long as the trigger is not depressed at the same time the grip safety is depressed and the manual frame mounted safety is deactivated. Being a believer in Murphy's Law, (What ever can go wrong Will) I have always been reluctant to carry my 1911s In what you refer to as a minimalist Holster, or as I have done for years with my carry guns, "Mexican Carry" style. At the very minimum I would want a fully covered trigger and a frame safety that takes concerted effort to disengage.

    DAO Autos and Revolvers are IMO a safer weapon to carry concealed if certain factors are present. Trigger pull needs to be heavy enough to resist initiating a hammer cycle should the trigger snag clothing when being holstered. My S&W revolvers all have a 10-12 # smooth pull that is resistant to NDs when being holstered or carried "Mexican" My Autos, other than my Springfield are DA/SA types that have a manual safety and are carried hammer down. Since the manual safety deactivates the trigger
    the problem of NDs should be non-existant regardless of carry method.

    You mention you had a Para 13-45. If it is the LDA model, the fact that carry condition is hammer down,with manual safety deactivating the trigger, as long as the manual safety remains engaged, it can't ND, and is safe to carry sans holster. If your 13-45 is SA , the above does not apply.

    I also own a Glock 23 that I would not think of carrying in anything other than a stiff duty type or IWB with the trigger completely covered and an open mouth to ensure a snag free holster/draw/reholster cycle, as the only active safety is the trigger mounted one that on mine, takes 3# to overcome. "Mexican" carry is out of the question for me.

    It all depends what you are comfortable with.
     
  4. fistful

    fistful member

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    JPM, thanks for your comments.
    Aren't there IWB holsters with these features?

    Carrying concealed in hot weather is something I find even harder to understand, but from what I read in mags and on the net, a lot of people do it. I find it hard to wear much more than a T-shirt for about half the year here in humid Saint Louis. Would you mind telling me how you conceal in t-shirts and shorts down there in Florida?

    I'm really not trying to spark a SA vs DA vs anything else controversy. I'm more interested in finding out if other packers have had the same problem, and how they deal with it.

    Regarding the LDA, however, they are not like other DA's. I had the opportunity to handle one at the NRA convention in 2001, and its trigger was very light and very smooth. Perhaps the display model "just happened" to have an especially nice trigger, but reviews I have read suggest it was normal.

    I can't see that a manual safety is much use without a holster that keeps it from being wiped off. As I said, my brand-name holster would actually disengage the safety, so it seems like Mexican carry has the potential to do the same.
     
  5. Declaration Day

    Declaration Day Member

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    You can try carrying without a round chambered. I always do this, but I have spent several hours practicing so that my pistol is 'ready for action' in less than a second. As my left hand draws the gun (I am a lefty), my right hand is immediately on the slide chambering a round. I can do this quickly and seamlessly. Note that it is NOT for everyone. If you're going to do this, practice, practice, practice! Good luck.
     
  6. fistful

    fistful member

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    Cannon, I started to get a CC permit down in Texas a while back, and went through a class on the Texas law. Down that-away, if your gun is accidently exposed...ees a big no-no, compadre. Do you know if the MO law is the same; is there a penalty for accidentally revealing of the gun?
     
  7. ssr

    ssr Member

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    In a proper holster a 1911 is perfectly safe. I carry 1911 condition 1 IWB. I would not want a retention strap on a concealment holster either. if you need it out fast you want to be able to pull it out fast immediately and shoot. Now, carrying in a poor holster or no holster, that I wouldn't do.

    1911 C+L is perfectly safe. You don't want to be nonchalant about your carrying either and forget that it's there and not be aware of where it is and what condition it is in.
     
  8. Ringer

    Ringer Member

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    I don't own a traditional 1911 style so I won't comment much on that. I will say it's not because I don't think they are safe, I do, they are just not my thing, maybe they will be some day.

    I really just wanted to add a comment or two to this one. My 2 cents anyways. If you do decide to carry, whatever you carry, a qualitly holster that provides retention and coverage of the trigger is a must along with a good belt. Once you strap the gun and holster on there should be no reason to unholster it unless you need to deploy it so chances of an ND because of the trigger snagging are pretty much eliminated. You can also choose to holster your weapon before putting the holster on your belt so it's right in front of you in plain sight. (In my opinion) unhostering your gun throughout the day is a bad habit to get into. Not saying you inted to do that just throwing that out there.

    I have only been carrying about a year and had some of the same concerns. I currently carry a revolver with a spurless hammer. I rest my thumb over the hammer as I holster so I would feel it begin to rise if by some odd chance the trigger snagged and was being drawn back. If needed, draw, point and pull the trigger.

    And lastly of course you are not being silly. You are concerned about safety. It's a good reminder to take nothing for granted and don't get complacent about carrying a gun.

    Oh yeah, as far as the LDA, as you say they are not truly double action. They need to internally cocked so in effect they are not really hammer down. The trigger is sweet, just wish I could get mine to run reliably.
     
  9. Okiecruffler

    Okiecruffler Member

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    I'm another one of those guys who couldn't be comfortable carrying a 1911 cocked and locked, even tho' I grew up with my dad carrying one and he's never had a ND. He's carried like that since he came back from Korea. As you stated, you don't have a CC pistol yet. Spend some time looking at the different actions and find what you are most comfortable with. As for me, I've made the decision to carry nothing but a DAO pistol, but only one without a manual safety, for my safety.
     
  10. Shootcraps

    Shootcraps Member

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    It gets pretty hot in Virginia too. ;) The secret to carrying while wearing shorts and t-shirts is a good holster and a good belt. Don't cheap on these and your heater is easier to conceal. Add in a loose fitting t-shirt and your in like Flint.
     
  11. MrMurphy

    MrMurphy Member

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    With a proper holster, (I prefer Kydex by Comp-Tac) holster retention means there is no shifting etc to disengage the safety. I've carried a 1911 for some time and shot them for years, with a good IWB holster you're perfectly fine.

    I carry in Texas summers (100+ degrees) with a buttoned but untucked square-bottom buttondown shirt, with a pattern. A t-shirt underneath, and the gun disappears (T-shirt optional). I've worn my G30 24 hours straight in this method and nobody had a clue. Since this is how I generally carry everyday, nobody else ever has a clue. The only time I've been "made" was when a girl hugged me and my arm didn't get in place to deflect her hand fast enough, and that was once.

    As to DA/SA and revolvers/Glocks, a proper holster covering the trigger is all you need. You can throw one on the ground and unless something squeezes the trigger, it's NOT going to go off.
     
  12. Vern Humphrey

    Vern Humphrey Member

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    Quote:
    --------------------------------------
    No argument can be made that the 1911 pistol, carried in a duty type holster with full trigger coverage and a retaining strap under the hammer is not completely safe, because it certainly is.
    ---------------------------------------

    Actually, the restraining strap makes the holster LESS safe. In many holster designs, the snap for the restraining strap is located where it may disengage the safety as you move around. The Galco Fletch was notorious for this.

    The M1911A1 was made when the Cavalry was a serious arm, and the pistol was designed for one-hand use on horseback.
    Now lots of people carry cocked or semi-cocked guns all the time -- the Ruger MKII auto is an example of a pistol that is carried cocked and locked, and no one thinks a thing about it. The Glock is carried semi-cocked (and has a much higher ND rate than the M1911A1.)

    In the M1911A1, the cocked-and-locked mode is perfectly safe. Of course the man carrying it must also be safe!
    :D
     
  13. Soap

    Soap Member

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    You're being silly. Get a good holster that covers the trigger and has a shield that covers the safety (good ones like the Milt Sparks Summer Special also have a small indentation which further helps keep it engaged).

    In fact, I'll put my money where my mouth is. I'll wager $1000 to anyone who will take me up in the following bet: We take a quality 1911, put it in a cocked and locked condition unloaded, leave it in a gunsafe for 1 year. If the hammer is at full rest at 365 days, I owe you a grand. If it is still cocked and locked, you owe me a grand. Any takers?
     
  14. gbelleh

    gbelleh Member

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    I occasionally carry a 1911 IWB in a rather minimalist holster and have never had the safety move.

    In hot weather, I carry a PM9 or snubby .38 in my front pocket in a pocket holster. Not much chance of ND.
     
  15. Majic

    Majic Member

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    It's just a personal choice to make based on your comfort level, but even if the safety is swiped off by the holster it still requires the trigger to be pressed for it to fire. The potential problem comes from someone who has their finger on the trigger and they are not ready to fire the pistol. A problem no matter what handgun you use, but more evident with the light triggered pistols.
    A good miminalist holster will still completely cover the trigger guard which prevents anything from engaging the trigger.
     
  16. jpIII

    jpIII Member

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    "Would you mind telling me how you conceal in t-shirts and shorts down there in Florida?"

    I think I might be able to weigh in on this question...
    I live in SOUTH Louisiana about 30 min from the Gulf. Let me tell you,... hot and humid is an understatement here for 3/4ths of the year!!:what:

    I carry 1 or 2 snub noses (rust resistant is a must) either in a pocket holster, or in a belly band worn under the waist line. (just the grip is above my belt line)
    The belly band worn under the waist line is very convenient for shorts that have no pockets such as running shorts, etc.

    I suggest several carry guns ( If you can manage it) to fit the season. When I first started to carry, the first gun I purchased was my "always" gun. I wanted a gun that could be worn anytime of the year with ease.
    After that you can purchase a gun with a bit more "umph" for cooler weather.


    I personally don't feel comforatble with a 1911 "cocked and locked" for carry purposes, but know plenty who do. It really is a personal decision.

    I feel that as long as you are concerned about a ND then you will be attentive, and I don't think you'll have any problems. You will probably feel awkward at first, like everyone is always looking at your gun.

    Eventually you'll get used to it, and it won't bother you anymore.
    In fact, you'll soon start to feel awkward without it.

    well, good luck with whatever you choose.
    and ALWAYS....
     
  17. M2 Carbine

    M2 Carbine Member

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    fistful,

    No you are not being silly. Doing something you aren't sure of is silly.

    No offense, but it sounds like you are too inexperienced to carry a 1911.

    "I think I'll be awfully nervous about having a negligent discharge."
    "Maybe I'm backwards, but the DA autos and revolvers seem even less safe than the 1911"

    You should not be carrying a pistol that makes you "nervous".

    I would suggest you get something simple like a S & W J frame 38 for carry, not a bad carry gun anyhow.

    Then work with the 1911 until you are COMPLETELY comfortable with it

    Having respect for your firearms is one thing, but being nervous (scared) around them is something entirely different.
     
  18. Vern Humphrey

    Vern Humphrey Member

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    "Would you mind telling me how you conceal in t-shirts and shorts down there in Florida?"

    My IWB design has a high leather backing, which I impregnate with Sno Seal. That keeps leather between gun and skin. It is also a place for the "button" or leather cam that keeps the safety lock engaged.

    In fact, with my design, you can take an UNloaded, cocked and UNlocked M1911, shove it in the holster, and when you pull it out, it will be locked. The button cams the safety to the safe position as the gun is holstered.

    With this design, I carry under a T-shirt all the time, in Arkansas, Virginia and south Texas.
     
  19. Andrew Rothman

    Andrew Rothman Member

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    You people may not believe it, but Minnesota DOES get hot in the summer (well, not this year, but usually...).

    I carry most of the year in a SmartCarry holster. It covers the trigger guard, and even on roller coasters or rolling around in the grass playing with the kids, the gun ain't goin' anywhere.

    I carry a full-size semi-auto and a spare 15-round mag, and I've never been made.

    (The inventor, Charlie, carries a genuine WWII 1911 [his dad's Army service pistol] daily, in hot and humid Florida.)

    In the winter, I sometimes carry OTB with an inexpensive nylon holster (with retention strap) under an unbuttoned long button-down shirt over a t-shirt.

    When carrying OTB, I feel like I am constantly on guard against flashing. In the SmartCarry, I don't even think about it.
     
  20. Edward429451

    Edward429451 member

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    You're not being silly. You're paying attention is all. It is dangerous to carry C&L. Keep that mindset and you wont be one of the ones who shoot themselves in the buttcheek. That doesn't mean it can't or shouldn;t be done though, just that you have to have an engaged brain when you do it. A good holster is a must. I've been C&L for 20 years and never had the ND while doing it. I have found the safety disengaged 2, maybe three times in the holster (High activity periods). You learn to be aware of the possibilities. I akin it to a mental reserve of focus. A 1% mental reserve of focus makes all the difference. It's largly unconcious but its still there. Make sense?

    It's like driving a car. No one really gives the road 100% attention yet they drive around safely. A car is loads more dangerous than a gun. It's when you lose that last little bit of focus that you crash.

    That goes for any gun really. Get a good holster, keep your mindset, and practice. You'll be alright. I see the biggest danger in carrying C&L as an airplane. The greatest danger is upon takeoff & landing, ie, holstering & unholstering. There's ways to check the safety while ccw without telegraphing what you're doing. It's not a novice pistol so be realistic about your focus level that you give it. Then you;ll get used to it and it wont bother you anymore and you'll feel akward without it.
     
  21. carpettbaggerr

    carpettbaggerr Member

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    Backwards you are. :D They would be safer for someone who's inexperienced. But that's not to say the 1911 is unsafe. If you aren't completely comfortable with a pistol, don't carry it.
     
  22. chas_martel

    chas_martel Member

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    fistful,

    There is no penalty in Texas for accidently showing your weapon with a CHL.

    Then penalty is for knowingly showing it with no cause.
     
  23. manwithoutahome

    manwithoutahome member

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    For all you folks in hot weather, I have one word for you Hawian Shirts :).

    In a pair of shorts, good belt, good holster and a Hawian shirt you can carry that huge 1911 all year. I do and I think I look quite good in the shirt :D.

    As for carrying C&L, I have two guns that I completely trust in this regard, the Kimber Pro-Carry (with the grip safety) and the HK .45 (full sized and doesn't have a grip safety).

    As for the belt, believe it or not people throw away really good stuff for concealed carry people at the Good Will and Vincent St. Paul stores. My belt is heavy duty, would cost around $125 out of any catalog, more in the store, and I picked it up for $2.50! My "concealment vest" was also bought at Good Will and it costs me a whopping $5.00 (leather "biker type" vest). Those Hawian Shirts, .50 apiece and I have around 20 of them now.

    Carry what you are comfortable with. If you are worried about C&L then carry with one in the pipe, hammer down if you want to carry a 1911 type. If you are uncomfortable with nothing but a DAO then carry that. No question is silly, any question not asked is silly.

    To put everything into perspective, the Jennings and the Bryco's passed Californias drop tests and are (were) legal for sale in that state :scrutiny:

    Wayne
     
  24. pbman

    pbman Member

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    OK.
    Just don't carry cocked and locked.

    I don't.

    Its slower but a lot safer, and thats important to me.
     
  25. AZgunstudent

    AZgunstudent Member

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    A 1911 carried cocked and locked is perfectly safe so long as the holster properly covers the trigger guard. It's no big deal at all, at least for a trained shooter. Negligent discharges happen when people press the trigger, not because the gun spontaneously fires in the holster. I've carried a cocked and locked Commander in various open-top inside the pants holsters for years with zero problems. Take some good training, observe Rule Three ("Keep your finger off the trigger until your sights are on target.") at all times, and you'll be just fine.

    And, yes, a full-sized pistol can be carried year-round, even in serious heat. A good belt and a tails-out shirt make it easy. I actually prefer carrying the Commander to anything else, including my little J-frame revolver.
     
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