November 12th, 2006 07:48 AM
Originally Posted by afeazell21
November 12th, 2006 12:44 PM
A few years ago some friends and I started a monthly practice group focused on testing our concealed carry equipment and developing our concealed carry skills. This group's more of a training aid than a competition.
Each month, we typically put together a drill aimed at developing a specific skill as well as an open-ended scenario replicating a self defense situation. After doing this for three or four years, we've discovered a few things about concealed carry gear and defensive shooting skills. Here are a few that might be relevant to this topic.
Your gun and related gear are a system, and must be well integrated in order to work well together. The system includes the gun, holster, speedloaders/magazines, speedloader/magazine pouches, belt, clothing, and even eye glasses – if you're an old fart like me.
Once you've put your CCW system together, test it rigorously and repeatedly in the most realistic circumstances you can set up. Do this with a group of friends and critique how well each CCW system works. You'll find out many of the things that appear perfectly well suited to concealed carry in the comfort of your living room, may not work so well when you test them in a stressful environment.
Use enough gun. In using reactive targets (made of vinyl in order to facilitate close up and personal shooting and to better simulate reactions on flesh) we found that smaller calibers didn't perform all that well. The old adage, “never go to a gunfight with a caliber that starts with a number less than four” proved to be quite applicable.
Also, use a gun that has sufficient ammo capacity. It usually takes two to three times the number of rounds you think it will to solve a problem under stress .
During our testing, all of the guys who started out using small guns, because they were more convenient, moved to larger guns. They did this for two reasons. First, the only time you are justified in using your gun is when your life is in immediate jeopardy, and in that circumstance do you really want to bet your life on a second-string choice? Second, they found out that using the right holster and belt makes larger guns very concealable and comfortable to carry.
Use a holster that facilitates a quick, smooth draw and an easy one-handed re-holster. You'd be surprised with how badly a fumbled draw can screw up your ability to address a defensive problem. Also, you need to be able to put your gun away using only one hand while keeping your eyes on the surrounding environment - rather than on the gun. You need to develop the ability to do this with your eyes closed using only one hand. The holster needs to not have any retention straps, they just get tangled up and get in the way at the most inconvenient times. The holster needs to stay open once the gun is removed. Kydex holsters or leather holsters with a reinforced opening work well for one-handed re-holstering. Since everyone is shaped differently, different holsters work for different people.
Use a belt that's stiff enough to keep everything in place. Thin, flimsy belts tend to let your gear wander around. You want it to be where you think it is when you need it.
Carry extra ammo. Do you want to bet your life that you can get yourself out of a bad situation with only the ammo in your gun? Once you've solved the initial problem, what do you do if the bad guy's friends show up, and you are either out of or almost out of ammo? If you carry extra ammo and don't need it, that's great. If you do need it, you'll be really glad you have it. The “extra ammo” part of your system needs to facilitate fast, smooth reloads, as well.
This turned out to be much longer than I had originally intended, but I hope some of the info is useful to you.
"A gentleman will seldom, if ever, need a pistol. However, if he does, he needs it very badly!" -- Sir Winston Churchill
"He who goes unarmed in paradise had better be sure that is where he is." -- James Thurber
November 12th, 2006 02:32 PM
A good holster/belt combo is just as important as the weapon itself. Don't cut any corners with your equipment. Get the very best you can afford. And.... who says you can only have ONE.......
November 12th, 2006 02:50 PM
Yes in a Uncle Mike pocket holster the SW 642-340pd are very combfortable to carry and it looks like pocket junk. I,m 53 so I don,t wear skin tight jeans ,but the relaxed fit. And in warm weather I get the shorts with the nice cargo pockets. In the winter the snub will ride in the outside coat pocket for easy access.
November 14th, 2006 07:28 AM
Thanks for all the great Advice! I really like the looks of the S&W 642. I held one at my local gun shop and it felt great. Well balanced and comfortable. So I am understanding that most people wear it in the pocket. I am really interested in wearing something on my ankle. Would a wheel gun like a 642 work?
I have also heard from a few of you that you don't like the Kahrs. Is it because of the break in period that can have jams? I like the Kahrs because they are about .90 - .94" wide. I am a bigger guy so that seems like it would fit nicer on my hip...or ankle.
November 14th, 2006 08:12 AM
Selection of a carry gun is personal right up there with selection of a spouse . What is good for you most likely isnt for me and vica/versa . Harold had a great post on this thread , in the sense that your ccw choice will be an intigrated system.
After many years of changing carry guns i now carry Kahr pistols and love them . I have two 9s and they are great little reliable pistols , slim and light . They as a system work for ME the p9 is primairy carry with a pm9 as a bug, or primairy when the p9 is just a bit big. for the most part holsters , mags , ect are interchangable . The manual of arms is identical for both of them so i dont have to think when i need them about " which way does the safety flip on this one " LOL .
Others choose to carry a full size pistol such as a 1911 or Sig and they are great choices too . The snubby crowd has a lot going for thier " 5 for shure " thoughts since 5 rounds SHOULD see you thro any confrentation and if 5 and a reload dont get it done , you dont need more rounds , you need a swat team .
If you work in a liquer store in gangbanger central well by all means load up , bring your friends with shotguns too . If not well then maby you can fit your gun to your wardrobe instead . Speaking of wardrobe and work , what you normaly wear will have a bearing on what you realisticly can carry and where . If tucked shirts , and no jacket is your work attire that limits realistic choices some. LOL
IMHO the two worst choices for carry are ankle and tuckable iwb. both are slow to get to and require contortions , or both hands to access your handgun . That being said i do use them some when forced into it , but not if i have another realistic choice .
The point is to set down and look at YOUR lifestyle ( where you live . work and normaly travel to / throu, how you dress and how utterly descrete you must be ) and assess the actual risks . Then set out to fill your needs with the right setup in pistol(s) and holster(s) .
Good luck on your selection .
Make sure you get full value out of today , Do something worthwhile, because what you do today will cost you one day off the rest of your life .
We only begin to understand folks after we stop and think .
Criminals are looking for victims, not opponents.
November 14th, 2006 08:26 AM
Thanks for the info. I have to wear tucked shirts and khakis pants at work so that is why I would like to ankle it. I don't work in a "sluggish" part of town our a hostile work environment. I just want to carry and be ready for anything that may affect me or my family. I think a single stack Kahr is more than enough shots and so is a stubby revolver with 5.
I can't wait to get my IWB holster from brommeland leather and see if I will like carrying my XD sub compact more. I still am looking for a good small form factor pistol.
Thanks for all the great information!!!
November 14th, 2006 09:10 AM
As far as Ruger go, I prefer the Speed -Six over the Sp 101...
Very high quality workmanship and in a 6 shot cylinder....
"Ray Nagin is a colossal disappointment" - NRA/ILA Executive Director Chris W. Cox.
"...be water, my friend."
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