I am still trying to find a way to make a full size gun work for me and I think I may have found my sweet spot.
First of all I'm proportionally very wide for my height. I'm 40" around at the waist and 48" around at the shoulders. OWB carry fails, no matter how closely it hugs my body. It just prints like you wouldn't believe.
I have found however in my experiments with my 642 that if I wear the gun at approximately 10 'o clock with the butt of the pistol facing forward, this makes for a somewhat comfortable carry position. It's the only IWB carry method I've found this far that does not absolutely paralyze me, and it doesn't print either.
I don't know if it's going to work. Early experimentation with my substandard holsters indicates the position is good for concealment and an intuitive draw, and I can actually move around freely. The problem is that I can't get the darn holster to stay still, firmly clipped in place, and the holster tends to travel up and down.
I want to experiment with carrying a full size gun in this position using the guns I already have, and that's where I run into some problems. The guns I am wanting to experiment with are my S&W 686 (4 inch barrel) and my Ruger P89.
I have tried an Uncle Mike's IWB holster for my 686 because it was cheap and I was certain I would not like this method. Well I may have since proven myself wrong. This holster would actually work for this gun if it was just made better. I need something stiffer with a more secure clip or mount of some sort. This holster is very comfortable but it is hardly confidence inspiring. It's a cheap holster though so there you go.
I have tried a Federal Holsterworks holster with my P89 in this position. This was a piss poor holster but it was cheap and it let me do a lot experiments on carry methods so it served its purpose. I ran into the same problem. It needed to be made out of an at least slightly stiffer material like leather or kydex. This holster was not that comfortable. To Federal Holsterwork's credit, the clip on their holster kept this one much more secure.
I've decided that investing a few dollars to find out how well this does or does not work is worthwhile. I want to find a better IWB rig which could facilitate my cross draw carry position for each of these guns.
I wear a belt anyway so a holster that requires me to wear a belt is not a problem. I'm looking for something that's a step up from the Uncle Mike's and Federal rigs in either leather or kydex, but not the soft neoprene or nylon as these materials don't seem to fit the bill. I'm also looking for a factory made holster in the interest of not spending a bloody fortune because the jury's still out on this.
The trouble is that I'm ignorant of the holster market and only know Uncle Mike's, Fobus, and Galco and even then I don't know them very well. And the thing is, no one actually uses a 686 or a P89 for a carry gun and I don't necessarily blame them. The holsters they offer for these guns tend to be hip or OWB carry.
I have considered a Mika's holster because I have an IWB Mika's holster for my 642 and it is excellent. I bet he would make one for a larger gun, and his holsters are excellent and inexpensive. His holsters are pretty soft but they're still much stiffer than the ones I've been trying to use.
But before I give Mr. Mika some more business, I wanted to see what you holster gurus could spit out at me. Feel free to ask away.