Need Advice on Open vs Concealed MOC

This is a discussion on Need Advice on Open vs Concealed MOC within the Open Carry Issues & Discussions forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; First off, let me explain that I'm a very large fella here... size 48 waist, so IWB concealed carry, especially with my chosen gun (the ...

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Thread: Need Advice on Open vs Concealed MOC

  1. #1
    Member Array bgriffin70's Avatar
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    Question Need Advice on Open vs Concealed MOC

    First off, let me explain that I'm a very large fella here... size 48 waist, so IWB concealed carry, especially with my chosen gun (the Glock 21) is all-but-impossible to do. That's one big gun to stuff in your pants! LOL

    Okay, so here's my dilemna and questions for you guys.....
    I've found a great duty belt, 2", that was custom made for me by a belt maker here in Seattle. Belt fits great and I can snug it up very tight on my belly, without it cutting into me like the smaller width belts would do. In addition, the larger width belt supports the Serpa holster and the Glock 21 very well.

    Carrying this thing, I have the hoster mounted onto the belt (right hand / strong side) OWB, just as a law enforcement officer would carry on his or her duty belt. Secondly, I most often wear jeans or casual dress pants, BUT, with an UNTUCKED shirt. I do not prefer to wear my shirt tucked in and show a huge gut hanging over my pants... I'm not for that look and don't ever want to see myself looking like that!

    So... I'm walking around yesterday, enjoying an afternoon and evening out with the family and carrying as "open carry," yet with my shirt untucked, I noticed that it pretty well covered (not concealed) all of my gun and holster. Obviously, even untucked, the gun "prints" when wearing this way.

    My question, or even fear perhaps, is am I breaking the law by carrying this way ????? Since concealed carry is meant just as it says; "concealed," I'm obviously "printing" when wearing a large gun belt and carrying a full size .45 on my waist! But even though I'm choosing the "open carry" theory by not trying to hide it, wearing my shirt tail untucked does come down and cover it.

    In other words... I would desire to carry this way as OPEN CARRY. Yet in reality, I am simply carrying this gun OWB but with my shirt coming down and completely covering the gun and holster.

    For clarification = am I breaking the law by presenting myself as "open carry," yet in reality, presenting myself as having the gun concealed, or covered by my shirt tail, while there is a big ol' obvious "printing" issue going on. (???)

    Bottom line = I do like the belt and would like to open carry as explained, it's just more comfortable on my big belly this way. Yes, yes - I do know there's debate on the OC vs concealed advantages, but I'm simply talking about my desire to OC with the method I've explained above.......... 2" duty gun belt, black, with OWB serpa holstering a Glock 21. The struggle is - do I (have to) tuck my shirt in to legally be presenting myself as "open carry" or am I setting myself up for being seen as an irresponsible cocealed carry person, because my shirt is untucked, but one can clearly make out that there's a very large bulge under the untucked shirt ???

    I hope this makes sense. Let me offer this: yesterday, while carrying that way, I did not receive one weird look, stare or otherwise. I don't think anyone really noticed while at Cabelas, Taco Bell or other general public places. While entering gun stores however, I did get the "glance" from folks at the counters, but not one comment, not one glance that I would see as bad....... just saying it was obvious for those who know what to look for. The general public... probably didn't pay any attention and it could have been a cell phone on my belt for all they knew. With my shirt untucked, you cannot see the belt, holster, magazine pouch, gun, - nothing but just bulging (printing) on my shirt from time to time.

    Please advise - as I obviously want to do the right (legal) thing first, and secondly, I just don't want to create a bad presentation of myself as an irresponsible gun owner exercising my right to carry.

    Thoughts / advice / opinions ???

    Thanks in advance !!!
    BG
    Boomer Sooner!

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  3. #2
    JD
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    I'm assuming you have a carry permit or whatever they call it in Wa, yes?

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    Senior Member Array BkCo1's Avatar
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    If it is covered it is concealed.
    Semper Fi

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    Distinguished Member Array Spec's Avatar
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    that's not OC... OC means everything is showing 100% of the time.
    NRA Certified Rifle/Pistol Instructor
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G18CFw0lnD8

    Accuracy ALWAYS WINS! So carry what you can hit with.

    If you find yourself in a fair fight your tactics stink.

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    Member Array bgriffin70's Avatar
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    I should clarify.... YES, I have my concealed pistol license. (CPL)
    And yes, I obviously keep it on me at all times.

    So if I'm reading BkCo1's comment correctly, I was not OCing yesterday, but actually concealed carry with some big-ass printing going on, that only a couple of the gun store folks happened to notice, but never said anything. While in Cabelas, I had many folks come up to me in casual conversation, (nothing to do with guns) just talking about store items, etc.; and I did not notice one person staring at the printing going on on the right side of my shirt tail. Even had kids talking to my kids and us while walking through the aquarium section and while looking at all of the animals, toys and stuff in the store. Women would talk to the wife and I about furniture, etc. - not one notice of a stare at all.
    (This is kind-of what I figured had happened, by legal or technical definitions)

    So am I now a law-breaker by having carried this way and having such an obvious bulge (printing) going on underneath my untucked shirt?

    Then what would be your recommendations for me to be technically considered OCing as describing my attire above? Simply tuck my shirt in?
    What if shirt is untucked, but raise part of it over the gun portion, to basically be showing off the fact that I'm carrying a gun........... to me, that sounds worse than just being totally untucked. It's almost like I'm trying to say, "look here, I'm carrying my Glock today."

    I wouldn't want to do anything that would do more harm than good, and if carrying this way presents myself as irresponsible printing a concealed firearm, I don't know what other options I have.

    Like I said, if I had a size 30 waist, there'd be more options maybe. I'm also very hot-natured, so wearing a coat, jacket, etc. is usually reserved for temps 40 degrees and below, unless I'm outdoors for extended periods of time. I am not one who wears a heavy coat while shopping inside stores for an hour or more. I'm fat enough I have my own insulation. LOL

    There's another thread on here that questions OC attire, and I note that one of the pics, a group of guys are showing their OC attire while in Las Vegas, and it does appear that a couple of them have their shirts "untucked." Albiet, their guns ARE showing in that photo.

    Please continue... I need the advice if this is the MOC I can continue, and yes, it was very comfortable yesterday. That two-inch duty belt feels so much better, as obviously using a thin belt to holster such a heavy gun would cut into my stomach when trying to tighten it up enough to support the weight of the Glock 21.
    Boomer Sooner!

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    Member Array bgriffin70's Avatar
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    And yes, I guess I'm being stubborn. I know another solution would just be to conceal carry a much smaller gun, like the Glock 36. I had one, but sold it. My stubborn mindset is that I just feel so much more comfortable shooting the full size frame gun versus the subcompact. I shoot more accurately, more comfortably, etc. with the 21 than I ever could with the 36.
    Boomer Sooner!

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    Member Array Munch's Avatar
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    Bulge and printing are not the same thing. Certainly there are other things that could cause a bulge above the hip like a cellphone/PDA or a camera case...maybe a medical device like an insulin pump. Printing means that bulge has the outline of a weapon. Here in Michigan concealed means not seen and that includes printing. Your state law should be available on the State webite or the State Police website. Just remember what Ted Nugent says...."Open carry "offers no tactical advantage," and your best bet is to get good leather, the right clothing, and keep your gun concealed until/unless you need it to save a life.
    Last edited by Munch; January 31st, 2010 at 07:06 PM. Reason: FFS
    “Owning a handgun doesn’t make you armed any more than owning a guitar makes you a musician.” Jeff Cooper

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    Member Array C Paul Lincoln's Avatar
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    Both concealed carry and open carry are legal in Washington with your permit, and there is not any requirement in law to not print. I go back and forth from CC to OC and in between at various times of the year depending on mode of dress and carry -- no worries.

    CP Lincoln

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    Member Array swatspyder's Avatar
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    Washington - Stories From The States - OpenCarry.org - Discussion Forum

    Open carry in Washington State is LEGAL with or without a concealed pistol license.

    Read up on the opencarry.org forum.



    In front of the Cherberg building on the Washington Sate Capitol Grounds in Olympia.
    Even State Patrol was there (2nd Picture) and they didn't care about us being outside or inside of the building while carrying both concealed and open (considering it is legal in Washington State).





  11. #10
    Member Array bgriffin70's Avatar
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    The top photo above; look at the last guy on the right... wearing jeans with his grey shirt "untucked." That is the basic attire I had on yesterday, other than the pants were dress-casual slacks and the shirt being untucked, I let it drape OVER the gun rather than raising it up to show that I was carrying (as is the guy in the top photo, farthest on the right.)

    While it is obvious there is something under my shirt when carrying like this, the "print" outline of a gun was/is NOT. Like you say, it could be a medical device, a carry bag, camera, etc. So now I guess I have a little better understanding of the term, "printing." But granted, if you're really looking at my right side, you'll know something is under there. And it's also probably at the determination of the person looking at the buldge on my side... we gun folks would probably know, but not one person in the general public last night seemed concerned, nor did anyone say something, one bit.

    I have the "cant" of my holster tilted fully adjusted forward (barrel forward), so it fits a little better against my side, but the butt of the gun stick further backwards than it would if I had it at neutral.
    Might try canting the butt-end forward instead ??? Just an idea ???

    EDIT: Oops, looks like I made another mistake...... the cant of my holster is adjusted so that the barrel is leaning forward, butt of gun backwards. I think this is actually referred to as canting backwards, rather than forwards - and probably another mistake, since this would allow the butt to stick out more to the rear of my body. Perhaps I can adjust the cant so that the butt of the gun leans forward. Someday, I'll figure out what the hell this "cant" really is defined as.
    Boomer Sooner!

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    Member Array Red82's Avatar
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    Get a different holster and your issue will probably be solved. The Serpa does NOT pull your pistol nice and close to you. It actually extends it. Get some nice leather and even another kydex holster that keeps that pistol nice and close. You can conceal that pistol without issues as long as you get a good/appropriate holster (the serpa was not meant for concealment) and dress around it.

    And I'd definitely carry with the grip/rear forward. It's called an FBI cant and will aid in carrying and drawing as opposed to your current cant.
    Protection is a responsibility not just a right.

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    Member Array David in MI's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Munch View Post
    Bulge and printing are not the same thing. Certainly there are other things that could cause a bulge above the hip like a cellphone/PDA or a camera case...maybe a medical device like an insulin pump. Printing means that bulge has the outline of a weapon. Here in Michigan concealed means not seen and that includes printing. Your state law should be available on the State webite or the State Police website. Just remember what Ted Nugent says...."Open carry "offers no tactical advantage," and your best bet is to get good leather, the right clothing, and keep your gun concealed until/unless you need it to save a life.

    In MI Open Carry is legal. If you have a CPL you would have additional protection while Open Carrying in the event that a shirt tail or jacket momentarily covers, and thereby conceals, all or a portion of the weapon. I am not aware of any law regarding printing.

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    Member Array bgriffin70's Avatar
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    Indeed, I have noticed that the Serpa holster does NOT draw the gun tight against the side of my body. It does ride kind of high also, thus allowing the butt of the gun to flop outwards, thus more of a printing or buldging concern.

    I'll take a look at different holster options for sure, and I think I understand the FBI cant definition now = it means having the BUTT OF THE GUN LEANING FORWARD A BIT, correct?
    Boomer Sooner!

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    Member Array swatspyder's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bgriffin70 View Post
    Indeed, I have noticed that the Serpa holster does NOT draw the gun tight against the side of my body. It does ride kind of high also, thus allowing the butt of the gun to flop outwards, thus more of a printing or buldging concern.

    I'll take a look at different holster options for sure, and I think I understand the FBI cant definition now = it means having the BUTT OF THE GUN LEANING FORWARD A BIT, correct?
    Stop worrying about printing. In Washington State, there is nothing against the law for openly carrying or carrying partially concealed, meaning, that if you print, or your holstered gun is showing in any way, it is legal.

    People are only going to wonder what the bulge is under your shirt, they DO NOT know that it is a firearm. People will 99% of the time, not notice, and if they do, they typically will not inquire.

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    VIP Member Array chiefjason's Avatar
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    If you want to OC, do the VA tuck. Tuck the Untucked shirt behind the grip of the handgun. That's how I OC with my Serpa and G19. It's what the guy in the gray shirt is doing.

    If you want to lessen the print while CC get a beltslide holster. It's OWB as well. Rides like a Serpa but pulls the gun in tight when you tighten the belt. I have mine on now and love it. The Serpa sticks out much farther than most CC holster and prints horribly.

    Printing is not illegal here in NC, we can OC as well. I just prefer to use the right tool for the job. If I want to CC then I don't want it seen as easily.

    Munch, that's the first quote from Uncle Ted that I don't like. He really said that? Good grief.

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