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Concealed Carry & Self Defense All aspects of Concealed and Open Carry, Home and Self Defense.


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  #1  
Old 10-21-2021, 12:35 PM
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I think the wisdom of the combined experiences of our members could benefit old and new concealed carriers. For giggles, as we post, throw in the number of years you have carried concealed so we can get an approximate aggregate. Iíll bet it is in the very high hundreds.

So Iíll start. I have carried concealed almost every day for 28 years.

My first tip:

Cut the bottom button off your concealed cover shirts.

I wear covering shirts untucked. I have found having the bottom button undone makes for a cleaner, wider opening when moving the covering shirt to access my AIWB gun. That undone button doesnít look right, perhaps even being a small signal that I may be carrying to those who might guess. The small button hole left behind is about invisible. Getting to your concealed handgun (or knife or whatever) cleanly and quickly is the first physical step to getting your gun on target and landing the first hit in a fight.

I almost never get tangled up with my shirt on the draw since Iíve done this. Try it with one shirt first and practice. If you keep the button you can sew it back on if it does not work for you.
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Old 10-21-2021, 01:20 PM
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Seven years of EDC, and remember the unnecessary concern at the beginning about my carry choice "printing". The public are generally oblivious to such things, and with the holstered giant cell phones so common, I really could have carried a full-frame unnoticed.
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Old 10-21-2021, 01:24 PM
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I have been pocket carrying for almost nine years.

Pro Tip: No skinny jeans.
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Old 10-21-2021, 01:38 PM
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Carrying daily or almost daily for 38 years.

Be the "gray man" (or "gray woman") and don't draw attention to yourself.

Know your firearm, know how to draw from concealment and how to put your rounds on target.

Have a less than lethal option...(pepper spray, impact device, etc). The gun isn't always the right first response.

Avoid confrontation if you can. If you can't, move to cover and / or concealment as soon as possible.

If you carry a semi-auto, carry a spare magazine in case of a magazine related failure. If you carry a revolver, a speed strip doesn't take up much pocket space.

Mentally prepare for the types of scenarios you're likely to encounter.
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Old 10-21-2021, 01:42 PM
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Going on 23 years for me....

Over the years, bowing to age and lifestyle changes, I've gradually transitioned my EDC from full-size 1911's down to steel-frame J's (mostly Model 60's).

My tip, FWIW - Practice, practice, practice with your EDC as if your life depends on it...it just might someday....
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Old 10-21-2021, 02:19 PM
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13 years carrying mid-size double stacks and carrying them IWB.

I think it's a better approach to marry yourself to a quality handgun as opposed to the carry gun of the month club or changing due to seasons, but that's a minority opinion that I wouldn't waste the energy trying to argue. To that end, I've had two EDC's since I started carrying in 2008. Glock 29 for 7 years and Walther PPQ for the last 6 years.

A tip that isn't a controversial argument:

The sleeveless undershirt/t-shirt. These have lovingly been termed "wife beaters" and I'm certain that moniker is a now canceled, not at all PC term, but I didn't name them so whatever.

I never was the undershirt type my entire life until someone on a gun forum suggested them back when I started carrying and now these kinds of shirts are literally as important to my carry as a quality belt. The shirt takes the abuse so your skin doesn't have to and if you carry a blued/black handgun and a dark IWB holster and a dark undershirt, it all blends beautifully so even if your regular shirt rides up or blows up, your carry gun stays camouflaged.
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Old 10-21-2021, 02:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sevens View Post
I think it's a better approach to marry yourself to a quality handgun as opposed to the carry gun of the month club or changing due to seasons, but that's a minority opinion that I wouldn't waste the energy trying to argue.
Bingo! Eight years... same gun...same holster...same pocket.

My hand knows what it's reaching for ever time.
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Old 10-21-2021, 03:44 PM
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38 years.

Donít put your pistol on top of the toilet paper dispenser.
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Old 10-21-2021, 04:09 PM
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49 years 1 month....

Don't hang your Glock on the coat hook
in the toilet stall.
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Old 10-21-2021, 04:13 PM
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Donít put your loaded Glock in the original Factory box with the locater pin that goes thru the trigger guard. ďGlock BoxĒ is a thing...
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Old 10-21-2021, 04:34 PM
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I may win the prize, been carrying since my 1968 rookie year w/the PD. The only advise I can offer is to make sure your EDC is totally hidden, always fly below the radar & shoot your EDC regularly.
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Old 10-21-2021, 04:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mikerjf View Post
Donít put your loaded Glock in the original Factory box with the locater pin that goes thru the trigger guard. ďGlock BoxĒ is a thing...
I was present at the event that caused them to change the boxes.

The knucklehead who shot himself in the upper leg following a range qualification actually got a settlement from Glock for his inattention and stupidity.

He was lucky he missed the femoral artery.
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Old 10-21-2021, 05:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blues7 View Post
I was present at the event that caused them to change the boxes.

The knucklehead who shot himself in the upper leg following a range qualification actually got a settlement from Glock for his inattention and stupidity.

He was lucky his missed the femoral artery.
And any other body parts in the vicinity of the upper leg!
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Old 10-21-2021, 05:06 PM
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Clean your EDC regularly, even if you haven't shot it. It's amazing how much fuzz and other stuff can accumulate inside it.
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Old 10-21-2021, 05:24 PM
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I've carried for 44 years now. Tips? Know your gun, keep you bugger hook off the trigger until your ready to shoot, once you settle on your carry holster, and trust it, don't keep checking it - That draws attention. A stiff belt helps prevent sagging. And for belt holster carry, an untucked shirt with a busy design (think Hawaiian shirt) really helps break up and hide any printing.

Larry

Last edited by Fishinfool; 10-21-2021 at 05:29 PM.
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Old 10-21-2021, 05:25 PM
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Got my first CCW permit in Jan., 1966; just back from SE Asia and out of the Army. Been carrying ever since, including 23 years of full time LEO service (1970-1993). Best advice is to learn to stop worrying about other folks seeing your pistol; they don’t see much of anything anymore, as their attention is on their phones or something else entirely.
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Old 10-21-2021, 05:37 PM
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You're carrying a firearm that cost you at least $400.00 more or less. Spend some money and buy a quality holster and belt. Don't cheap out and buy something that won't last or really meet your needs.
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Old 10-21-2021, 05:54 PM
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Pretty much daily for not quite 50 years. Buy a decent holster and belt. Find a carry that works for you and go with it. Practice presenting from the holster with real street clothes like you normally wear. Practice with your EDC. Concealed means concealed.
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Old 10-21-2021, 06:12 PM
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53 yrs. stop and think before you jump in guns blazing !!
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Old 10-21-2021, 09:06 PM
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Thirty plus years carrying every day. An earlier post mentioned sticking to one gun, instead of the "gun of the month club". I tend to change my carry gun seasonally. Living, working and playing in New England, I change depending on the weather. Shield .40 S&W or J frame in the summer, as my clothing is lighter (any potential target would be similarly dressed). I carry either a model 457 or 4013 in the winter, because I wear a heavy jacket/clothing (as any potential target would also wear, thus the larger caliber gun). Spring and fall allow me to carry pretty much anything. The best part, is having to shoot each gun regularly to ensure proficiency. However, for the past several years while in the office I have carried a Polish Radom P64 in 9mm Makarov, in my pocket. Small, easily concealed and to quote another member of the forum "bet your life reliable".

A rule I have regarding concealed carry: If I am out with or without my wife and more than two people know I am carrying, then I am doing it wrong.
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Old 10-21-2021, 10:30 PM
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Carry the biggest gun you can, and dress to accommodate it.

Don't be the guy that slips a j frame in the pocket because it's easy. Go G19.
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Old 10-21-2021, 11:03 PM
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First, the fact is that I have been pocket carrying for decades, from mouseguns to J frames, sometimes K frames, and even compact and not so compact 9mms - depending on the pants. Jeans, dress pants, cargo pants, tuxedos, whatever. I'll get to belt carry momentarily.

Here's the tip - at no time in 30+ years of pocket carrying have I ever dropped a naked/unprotected gun into a pants pocket. Before I discovered pocket holsters (don't ask how I missed that) I hid the guns behind folded handkerchiefs and, the big key, a small piece of leather between the gun and the pants. Could be a business card-type wallet or a nice piece of leather made for this purpose (my local cobbler has made me several).

Before pocket holsters the gun rode inside the first fold of the handkerchief (kept it clean and not pressing against my leg) with the bulk of that material behind the leather piece. It ALWAYS looks like a front pocket wallet and even after decades of pocket holsters I still never drop a gun into my hip pocket without the leather piece in front of it.

Normal, non-gun people don't look for guns and normal people see wallets and think wallets and the story ends for them right there.

I rarely walk around with my shirttails out, I don't like the look, but belt carrying handguns underneath vests has been a way of life for me for a very long time, when I don't choose to pocket carry. IWB or OWB, usually the former, all sorts of vests covering the gun. Nobody notices and access to the gun is a breeze. My vests run the gamut of western style, bird hunting style, and everything in between - EXCEPT multi-pocket photographers-type vests because the world once thought they screamed GUN! so I don't do it.

But, speaking of pocket carry, here's another tip for folks who have to wear suits to work. Suit coats and blazers have "chest/breast pockets", usually on both sides. Back before Texas passed concealed carry and even as I worked in offices where guns were forbidden I often carried a mousegun (Beretta 950 BS) in my left breast pocket. In THAT pocket I carried the little gun "nekkid", just dropped in. But the tip is this - I had the original left side pockets removed in all of my coats - I had a tailor do it - and replaced those soft, silky pockets with sturdy denim that I bought in large pieces from a fabric store. The benefits were that the gun didn't wear through the pocket and the coat lining (which it will, and quickly) and the gun was perfectly concealed inside the denim, no printing and very little movement, and VERY easy to reach.

Clean denim didn't cause lint or dirt or anything to get into the gun and a holster would have been an impediment.

So, there you go!
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Old 10-21-2021, 11:50 PM
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CC for about 10 years.
Quit tugging at your shirt!


The run of the mill person isn't looking for anyone carrying a concealed weapon.


For the love all that's holy, if you're approaching 60 years of age, you do not have any business wearing a "fishing vest" to the grocery store. It's so damn obvious....


Situational awareness does not mean you should confirm your sidearm is on your hip every 2-3 minutes.


Relax, it's not a big deal if you stay calm and act like a normal human being.
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Old 10-22-2021, 07:03 AM
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carry one in the chamber
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Old 10-22-2021, 08:43 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sigp220.45 View Post
38 years.

Donít put your pistol on top of the toilet paper dispenser.
36 years: Or hang it from the coat hook on the back of the stall door. Your plan for bathroom visits is way more important than your plan for a mass shooting . . .

(Edit: forgot my carry anniversary was just around the corner, and added a thought.)
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Old 10-22-2021, 08:52 AM
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Find what works for you and stick with it.
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Old 10-22-2021, 08:54 AM
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No "carry rotation."

Monday, yuck, I'll just grab the G19. Tuesday, OK, the 642 comes out. Wednesday, hump day, Beretta 92 is cool. Thursday, let's go with the new P320. Friday! 1911 day!

And one day the Southwest Bounty Hunters show up. You reach for your piece de jour. . . No idea what's in your hand . . . A "404 not found" and you die

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Old 10-22-2021, 09:32 AM
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Update:

We are beyond 615 years combined experience.

Tip:

Your grip is the foundation for sight alignment. With enough practice, a full firing grip upon presentation will cause the sights to be aligned, the trigger finger ready to properly press rearward, and recoil will be controlled for additional follow up shots. It is the key to speed and accuracy.

Every gun you carry with a different grip requires grip practice and memory. The change between a revolver and a pistol is especially challenging for me.

Some evenings I just firmly hold my unloaded EDC while watching TV. I check that grip for sight alignment every once in a while. I want my hand(s) to automatically obtain the perfect grip for initial sight alignment without adjustment or thinking. This practice is simple, free, and very effective.
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Old 10-22-2021, 09:53 AM
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Quote:
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Update:

We are beyond 615 years combined experience.

. . .
I wouldn't read too much into that. Some people have 20 years of experience. Others have one year of experience 20 times . . .
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Old 10-22-2021, 10:06 AM
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33 years CCW, last 25 or so every single day.

If allowed, practice in your normal attire, with your daily gear.
You don't learn much with your OWB leather holster and no cover garment, if you typically carry IWB kydex or pocket carry with a buttoned shirt.
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Old 10-22-2021, 10:08 AM
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Concealed carry for around 7 years. (Illinois was the last state to legalize it.)

Carry all the time, not just when you think you might need it.
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Old 10-22-2021, 10:17 AM
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Quote:
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I wouldn't read too much into that. Some people have 20 years of experience. Others have one year of experience 20 times . . .
As I mentioned in the original post, this is just interesting, not scientific. The poster with the lowest number of years stated was seven years. I have only counted the years of those who volunteered the information.
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Old 10-22-2021, 10:34 AM
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The whole "Carry Rotation" thing......Can't remember if I carry the 1911 on Monday or not. Then Thursday pops up and I think it is J frame day.

Randy
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Old 10-22-2021, 11:49 AM
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Itís amazing how much lint can build up in a month, either on a hip, IWB, or in a pocket. I clean my carry gun(s) weekly.

Edited to add: First permitted in 2005 and carry everyday.

Last edited by dirty & hairy; 10-23-2021 at 11:47 AM.
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Old 10-22-2021, 12:07 PM
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Default Can't remember how long

But it's been a long time. As I age the rule I live by in almost all things is KISS - you all know what it means. Applies to carry just like everything else.

No searching around for the choice of the day in the clothing of the day. Same piece, same place. Muscle memory.
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Old 10-22-2021, 12:21 PM
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read the book " WILL" by my friend G.Gordon Liddy.
He explains all you need to know about holster conditioning and concealed carry. Of course he was suit wearing FBI agent. Not much about Hawaiian shirts from his era (1960s).
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Old 10-22-2021, 07:56 PM
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I have always believed, and in my self-defense classes always taught the WASP philosophy. Here are a few excerpts from my class manual:

W is for Wisdom. We need the wisdom to be aware of the potential threats to our safety. We need to be alert so we can recognize a pending threat. We need the wisdom to know when to shoot and when not to shoot.
A is for Accuracy. If we need to shoot in a self defense situation, it is almost certain to be at a range of less than ten feet. The technique for
accuracy at that range is known as the flash sight picture. The shot is fired as soon as the front sight is roughly lined up somewhere within the rear sight notch.
S is for Speed. Mushin is a martial arts term that means instantaneous reaction without wasting precious time thinking about what we need to do. Our reaction should be automatic. Our nerve channels are conditioned by thousands of repetitions. Muscles do have memory.
1. To paraphrase John Bianchi's Law, "always carry the same gun in the same holster and in the same location.
2. Practice with the objective of being able to get your gun out, get the flash sight picture and shoot in less than a heart beat.
3. 96% of the time you will not need to shoot if you can get your gun out quick enough. That is why speed is so important.
4. How much training and practice is enough? Col. Jeff Cooper said it best: "At such time as you are really convinced, when menaced by an armed attacker, that he is in greater danger from you, than you are from him..."
P is for Power. If we need to shoot , we need the power to stop the fight. Power is kinetic energy, also called knock down power and impact energy. Penetration, according to the FBI, must be at least 12" into ballistic gelatin.
Performance is how the bullet behaves when it enters the body. The FBI Bellieves the bullet that goes deep and creates the biggest hole, has the best chance of stopping dangerous criminals. Placement is more important than power, penetration or performance. If we can't hit the bad guy, the ammunition we use does not matter.
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Last edited by crazyphil; 10-22-2021 at 07:59 PM.
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Old 10-22-2021, 08:11 PM
oldiegoldie oldiegoldie is offline
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don't forget to keep the innards of your magazine clean. i disassemble and clean magazine internals after every range trip with my carry firearm. i rarely see this mentioned on forums.
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Old 10-22-2021, 08:36 PM
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30 years. I carried in my Freightliner long before Illinois had CC. I had an out of state (Washington State) CC permit which I was certain was useless in most states but which made me feel more comfortable. Thankfully I never had to use it.

Regardless of caliber or make or style of firearm you carry always keep two reloads with the gun. In a pocket, briefcase, purse, pocket, or wherever else you may wish to carry them. One reload is never enough if you have to use it.

Last edited by Llance; 10-22-2021 at 08:37 PM.
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Old 10-22-2021, 08:44 PM
Muss Muggins Muss Muggins is offline
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Why two? Have you ever had to use even one?

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Originally Posted by Llance View Post
30 years. I carried in my Freightliner long before Illinois had CC. I had an out of state (Washington State) CC permit which I was certain was useless in most states but which made me feel more comfortable. Thankfully I never had to use it.

Regardless of caliber or make or style of firearm you carry always keep two reloads with the gun. In a pocket, briefcase, purse, pocket, or wherever else you may wish to carry them. One reload is never enough if you have to use it.
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Old 10-22-2021, 09:25 PM
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Pay no attention to anyone that disses your "fishing vest"
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Old 10-23-2021, 10:47 AM
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Started near the end of 1977. Practice with your carry gear, thatís all.
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Old 10-23-2021, 11:22 AM
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Go to a range with someone who has a good red dot set up and knows how to use it. Try it, but pay for his ammo.

Many other threads explain the RDS advantages, but you have to try it to understand. Mounting an optic on your EDC is not for everybody, but it is a sighting and speed solution that many are finding an advantage, and not just guys with older eyes.
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Old 10-23-2021, 12:29 PM
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Practice, practice, practice!

Your objective should be to hit, from the holster, in 1.5 seconds at 10 yards and 2.5 seconds at 25 yards. Donít omit timed practice and donít omit comparatively long range (25 yards).

Pick a gun then stick with it. We all like to play with our guns, but ďrotatingĒ edcís is silly.
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Old 10-23-2021, 03:41 PM
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40 years for me. I agree with the philosophy of sticking to one or two guns if you can. I would like to add that you should carry the best ammunition and holster you can afford. I've seen too many friends and acquaintances save up and buy an expensive handgun only to carry generic RNL or loss leader FMJ ammunition and carry it in a cheap nylon waistband holster. Or no holster at all!
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Old 10-23-2021, 04:05 PM
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43years................... just cus it's "NEW" doesn't make it better!!!!!!!
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Old 10-23-2021, 04:16 PM
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20ish years.
Dunno if you'd call it a tip but my idea was to keep it simple and dependable.
A small revolver that I'm very familiar with.


In a high quality, hand made leather pancake style holster.


Hanging on a matching high quality hand saddle stitched double layer leather belt.


And carried in an easily accessible comfortable spot.
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Old 10-23-2021, 04:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crstrode View Post
Pay no attention to anyone that disses your "fishing vest"
Very funny!!!

I wear several bird hunting vests, you know, the kind with a big pocket in the back for dead pigeons , but, as noted above, I live in vests so I have so many it doesn't matter. Nobody cares. Everyone who knows me expects me to be in a vest so it simplifies matters. Everyone who doesn't know me......I'm a cypher, a ghost, nobody "sees" me.....or you.

Regular EDC:



Often EDC:




There is no other "rotation" for me per se, just some other guns I like and know how to use well, snubbie K frames, larger 3rd Gen S&Ws.

Since this is a thread about "tips" let me add - practice point shooting. After you do that go ahead and get some bullseyes using your sights just to remind yourself how and to show off if you must. Then practice point shooting again.

Explanation because I don't want to mislead anyone:

Put out a standard B-27 silhouette target. Stand 10 or more feet away. Look this evil dude in the face, remember that he's fixing to kill you, draw your gun properly and point it at his center mass and fire. Do that again and again and at different distances. Notice I said "point". I did not say "aim".

Don't waste time or money on red dots; those optics are useless for point shooting since you're not using sights, anyway, you're gun fighting to survive.

End public service announcement. Back to your regularly scheduled program......

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Old 10-23-2021, 05:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by snubbyfan View Post
20ish years.
Dunno if you'd call it a tip but my idea was to keep it simple and dependable.
A small revolver that I'm very familiar with.


In a high quality, hand made leather pancake style holster.


Hanging on a matching high quality hand saddle stitched double layer leather belt.


And carried in an easily accessible comfortable spot.

Ah, but in the same space and weight, you could be packing a G19. As simple and dependable as the revolver, and 16 > 6 when you're looking death in the eye.
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Old 10-23-2021, 05:35 PM
Mike_Fontenot Mike_Fontenot is offline
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23 years, every day, from pajamas-off until pajamas-on. Started with an ultralight 360sc .357 snubby in my front pocket. It's still there, but I soon added a bigger gun in a homemade under-the-shirt vertical cloth shoulder holster rig. First big gun was a 5" 10mm Kimber 1911. Last 5 years has been a 5" 629 "Classic" 629 .44mag, shooting 240gr JHP Underwoods. I use a VERY relaxed grip, with relaxed wrists, elbows, and shoulders ... no pain or bruising that way. I shoot strictly single action, with a 3 lb trigger-pull. My objective is to shoot a very small number of very powerful rounds, hitting what I'm aiming at.

Last edited by Mike_Fontenot; 10-23-2021 at 05:36 PM.
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