How to use a holster?

This is a discussion on How to use a holster? within the Defensive Carry Holsters & Carry Options forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; Ok, I've read 100s of reviews, read about the different styles and cants, but how do you learn how to correctly use a holster and ...

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Thread: How to use a holster?

  1. #1
    Member Array Ghuqu2's Avatar
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    How to use a holster?

    Ok, I've read 100s of reviews, read about the different styles and cants, but how do you learn how to correctly use a holster and pick one right for you? Is there a holster 'school' or a place where someone has the time and different types of holsters to show how they are used or best fit me? I feel like a 6th grader reading a college textbook, understanding the words but not the meaning. Any suggestions would help.

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  3. #2
    VIP Member Array Ti Carry's Avatar
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    That's pretty funny! To my knowledge there is no such store you speak of and the problem with that is you then have a trial and error situation like this rest of us who end up with holsters they don't want or like anymore. I have been fortunate that I have only a couple like that but it happens to everyone.

    The best thing I can tell you is call some of the makers that you are attracted to there work and get a consultation from them and they can direct you to something that 9 out of 10 times will work.


    Ti
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  4. #3
    Member Array Argus's Avatar
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    I'm no expert. Some things to consider.
    1) What kind of gun do you carry.
    2) Do you want IWB or OWB
    Sometimes it's trial and error. You might have to try a few till you find something that's comfortable for you. If you do a search here, you'll find some threads to read through. I know, not much help. It's all kind of personal. Like I said trial and error.

  5. #4
    Member Array Ghuqu2's Avatar
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    I guess my problem is that I have a small base of holster knowledge and don't know what is best for me. I have a Taurus 850 CIA that I carry in a cheap pocket holster now, and am looking at a P3AT. I like the 850 but hate it in my pocket. I'm loosing weight but still buy cloths at the "short and fat" section of the store (5' 8"/250) - as my wife says no butt all gut . I have never used another holster except OWB so I have little to compare w/. I just don't want to spend $100s I don't have to find a style I like, not just the "perfect holster".

  6. #5
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    Holster School

    It's right here. Class is always in session.

    Folks will need information in order to help you though.

    What firearm do you want to carry?

    How are you required to dress if you are required to dress any certain way?

    Are you really heavy or really thin or average?

    Are you able to wear shirts untucked?

    Do you have a good gun belt already?

    There may be a few more questions. Start by answering those.
    Liberty Over Tyranny Μολὼν λαβέ

  7. #6
    Member Array OldMick's Avatar
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    If the purpose is strictly for concealed carry, the least expensive way would be to find someone locally who is experienced in concealed carry, and who can review how you will use the holster.

    As an example, I use a Comp-Tac CTAC, Gurkha or their OWB Paddle holster for day-to-day carrying. I switch to a leather holster (Milt Sparks) if I'm on a motorcycle. The CTAC's are great (in my opinion) for a fast, smooth draw from concealed. I like a leather holster on a motorcycle because it feels more secure to me, and the handgun seems to "settle in" to the holster the longer I ride. Kydex holsters can normally be adjusted for a tighter hold, but I just prefer leather for that use. So how you plan to use it, or just plain personal preference, may affect your choice.

    The more expensive route would be to purchase a good quality holster in leather or kydex and sign up for a firearms class that covers drawing, drawing from concealed etc. That will usually allow you to try different positions for the holster, adjust the cant, if the holster is adjustable, and get in a good deal of practice on drawing, reloading and maybe dealing with malfunctions. All stuff that will serve you well.

    If it were me, I'd buy the holster (and magazine pouch) and sign up for the training, or ask the instructor for holster suggestions when you sign up for the class.

    You may change your opinion when the training is done, but you'll be far more qualified to make the next purchase decision.

  8. #7
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    I speak often about Fist holsters (see Related Links). They have quality holsters, with reasonable prices, delivery in 3-5 weeks (usually)...and a great return policy (no questions asked)...

    OMO...but they are a 'stand up company'...
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    Member Array 1911NM's Avatar
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    Just what I have heard or experienced. That's why some of us have a large (some larger than others) plastic storage container for holsters. Secondly, dress around your carry piece, not the other way around. YMMV.
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  10. #9
    Member Array Ping Ping's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by QKShooter View Post
    It's right here. Class is always in session.
    +1

    As much as anything, internet forums are about the best "holster school" there is. I suggest reading every holster thread you can find. Also, go to every holster link you can find and get an idea of what you think looks good, interesting. Make as many trips to local gun shops as necessary in order to look at and handle them first hand. Then, formulate your remaining list of questions and post them.

    Unfortunately it's nearly impossible to find a shop that stocks custom leather and that's precisely where you will find the best quality, fit, function and durability.

    You will not get out of this quest with only one holster and have it be "just exactly perfect". First, there is no such thing. All the premier makers have something about them, which sets them apart from the others. Second, what works fine for you now, likely wont remain the ideal, forever. Finding the right holster for the individual is about compromise. Find the maker who employs the greatest number of desired features and go with that.

    I recommend finding your prefered mode of carry first; IWB, OWB, Cross... whatever. Then, get an inexpensive, adjustable model to experiment with. Once you are convinced that that mode is for you; once you have achieved a level of proficiency in it's use and deployment from it, then order up a high-dollar, custom rig, which embodies the features, postition and aesthetics you prefer.

    Good luck.
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  11. #10
    Member Array Ghuqu2's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by QKShooter View Post
    What firearm do you want to carry?

    How are you required to dress if you are required to dress any certain way?

    Are you really heavy or really thin or average?

    Are you able to wear shirts untucked?

    Do you have a good gun belt already?

    There may be a few more questions. Start by answering those.
    OK Here we go...

    1. Interested in carrying Taurus 850 CIA - Its a all titanium version of a hammerless (DAO) J -Frame. Also interested in info for the P3AT, although I don't own one (yet).

    2. I dress 95% in jeans/ denim shorts w/ T-shirt and SUSPENDERS, no belt. No butt means air hooks to keep the pants up. I mostly work on the farm w/ the kids (<4yrs old) but make many trips to town and also do computer work.

    3. Not big and tall, just short and fat (but loosing weight.) 5' 8"/ 250. All gut no butt.

    4. My shirts are all tucked, have to w/ suspenders.

    5. I don't have a gun belt. Honestly haven't worn a belt in years. When I do I have to spend 1/2 the time pulling my pants back up. I was brought up to wear suspenders or belts not both.

    I guess I'm still trying to find my best mode to carry. Pocket seems best but that's really all I've tried.

  12. #11
    VIP Member Array havegunjoe's Avatar
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    When I was looking I checked forums and magazine articles. I asked folks on forums just as you are doing. I tried to decide what type of holster I wanted. For example I decided I wanted a IWB tuckable type. I checked out the major brands websites along with some unknowns. Finally I called the manufactures and talked to the people there. They were for the most part very helpful. After all this I realized that I still might end up with several holsters for different seasons and styles of dress. For my main carry gun, a Kahr Arms P9 I have a Tucker Gunleather IWB Tuckable, belly band, Andrews Monarch Rig shoulder holster, and a fanny pack. I'm covered no matter what I am wearing.
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  13. #12
    Distinguished Member Array ArmyCop's Avatar
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    I would LOVE to have a place locally that carried a good variety of quality holsters to try - but - no such place around here.
    I'm limited to have to pay\order & get it in before knowing if I like it or not.
    Even at gun shows that come around here - only the cheaper holsters, no one brings a good selection of quality holsters that you can try before you buy. Bummer...
    For God, Family and Country!

  14. #13
    Distinguished Member Array BIG E's Avatar
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    No belt makes it tough. I would suggest pocket carry, but you are already doing that. What about ankle carry?

    I think adding a belt along with your suspenders would help alot. It would definitly open up more options.
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    YOUR DOOMED!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Just kidding, but you will end up like the rest of us............

    With a drawer full of unused holsters.........
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  16. #15
    VIP Member Array sass20485's Avatar
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    From what you have described, I think you are correct in that POCKET carry will be your best option. With a tucked shirt and belt issues, I don't see IWB being an option, nor OWB either for that matter, as you don't wear a belt or cover garment normally. I find myself carrying my Keltec P3At in a K Rat pocket holster from Pale Horse holsters ( see MEGA link page ) most of the time. It works the best for me of the several pocket holsters I tried, gun comes out easily, holster remains in the pocket, does not print GUN in my jeans or slacks. Keltec is very lightweight, so it makes pocket carry easy. You can also try a MIKA pocket holster, inexpensive ( under $20 ) and as they are made with synthetic materials, they won't absorb sweat and dirt from being around the farm. He makes them for semi auto pistols & revolvers. Some one will surely jump in with his website link.

    Good luck, as finding the right holster & carry method does involve some trial and error, Lord knows it has for me.

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