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S&W Revolvers: 1980 to the Present All NON-PINNED Barrels, the L-Frames, and the New Era Revolvers


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Old 03-06-2010, 10:23 AM
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Earlier this week, I got reacquainted with the reason I first got a S&W J-frame. It's gotten a little warmer around here, so a coat hasn't been necessary. When I left work one afternoon I had to run a few errands. I took my 642 out of the truck and, as is usual, I put it in my pocket. I can't carry at work--government building...illegal to possess weapons, etc.

I proceeded to the supermarket to pick up a few things. When I got out of the truck, I noticed the Pachmayr Compac grips of the 642 was showing. I tried to adjust it but those Compac grips are not really "compact". I had to pull out my shirttail to be sure the gun was concealed.

This got me to thinking. I have acquired several J-frame snubbies over the past few years. I got them for concealment and for pocket carry especially. But over time, I've managed to outfit all of them with larger rubber Pachmayr or Hogue grips. They carry fine in belt holsters and they are more comfortable to shoot but they are hardly pocketable anymore.

So I went through my gun stuff boxes and tried different grips. The rubber boot grips that came with the J-frames and the various other small grips that fill the area behind the trigger guard do not fit for diddly. I end up with a two-finger grip down low on the gun that is not at all secure. So finally I settled on the Smith Dyamondwood laminated grips for those guns I will pocket. They are small, thin and hard and they hurt like hell when you go through a 50-round box of ammo at the range, standard or +P. But the guns are now pocketable again and, after all, that is the reason I have them.
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Old 03-06-2010, 10:37 AM
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Good comments. I found the Crimson Trace Lasergrips to be a good compromise, especially the ones with hard sides and rubber front and rear - long and tacky enough to hang onto but unsticky on the sides. Do you use a pocket holster?
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Old 03-06-2010, 10:40 AM
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Another Convert..
Aren't J Frame airweights great to carry in your pocket..
I went threw several grips looking for the ones that were the best "FOR ME" & also tried the dymondwood grips you have, they were very good BTW & fit the gun very good..
"FOR ME" the Spegel wood grips fit me best & are slick enough that they don't cause drawing problems, also Eagle Secret Servive & the Dymondwood S&W grips work very well, they give you a decent purchase on the gun without all the bulk..
You'll end up carrying more & even though they'll smart some at the range the small compactness of those boot grips is the beauty of the J frame platform..
And fancy wood grips look good as well.
That's a Win Win Situation..
I too suggest you use some type of pocket holster, I have a Kramer but it weighs almost as much as the gun & usualy carry in a Uncle Mikes IWB holster with the clip holder cut off, Light & Thin, tacky on the outside & smooth on the inside for a better draw & stays put in your pocket..

Gary/Hk

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Old 03-06-2010, 10:48 AM
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a lot of the pocket carry problems lays in the type of pants and its pockets, more so than the gun and rig its in.

casual type pants with a slash side entrance pocket lend themselves to pocket carry better than top entry "blue jean" style. of course the depth of the pocket is vital as is the diemension of the pockets top opening.

many pockets have different shaped bottoms, i.e. squared, rounded, tapered......so holster selection is important to get a good match.
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Old 03-06-2010, 10:49 AM
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A good series of videos on snubs, carry and use from a law enforcement training perspective: POSA Video Network at Officer.com -- Defensive Snub Revolver - part1
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Old 03-06-2010, 10:54 AM
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For the best pocket holster made, IMO, check out Robert Mika, he's a former cop.
Mika's Pocket Holsters - Custom Made Pocket Holsters, Waistband Holsters, Vest Holsters, Tactical Pocket Mirrors And Much More.
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Old 03-06-2010, 12:22 PM
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Nothing beats the factory magnas and a Tyler T-grip on j-frame snubs. Like God and S&W intended.

My Model-60, so outfitted, is in my pocket right now. Hardly noticeable, well concealed.
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Old 03-06-2010, 12:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by redlevel View Post
Nothing beats the factory magnas and a Tyler T-grip on j-frame snubs. Like God and S&W intended.

My Model-60, so outfitted, is in my pocket right now. Hardly noticeable, well concealed.
Amen brother! Both of my mighty J frames (models 36 & 38) wear factory magnas and Tylers.

The model 36 (no dash) Chief's Special rides in a Galco "Speed Master" OWB holster, along with a Bianchi speed strip in a Galco "2x2x2" ammo carrier.

The model 38 (no dash) Airweight Bodyguard rides in a DeSantis "Nemesis" pocket holster for now, but I'm shopping for something new. I've had the DeSantis since October 2008, and it rides in my front pocket...

Every. Single. Day.

I also carry another speed strip in the opposite front pocket for the little humpback. Occasionaly, I'll carry a Safariland Comp I speedloader as well.
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Old 03-06-2010, 12:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by redlevel View Post
Nothing beats the factory magnas and a Tyler T-grip on j-frame snubs. Like God and S&W intended.

My Model-60, so outfitted, is in my pocket right now. Hardly noticeable, well concealed.
A man after my own heart! Absolutely the ultimate for maximum concealability and more-than-adequate control.

I'll also add that if any aftermarket-gripped J-frame is too big for pocket carry, you need pants with bigger pockets. :-) Roomy pockets are a feature I look for in any pants I buy, and most of my pants can easily pocket at least a Glock 36.
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Old 03-06-2010, 01:52 PM
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I have Hogue bantam grips on both of my 60s, and pocket carry with no ill effects.
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Old 03-06-2010, 02:59 PM
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Not too long ago I put a set of the S&W banana grips on my every day carry, a 442. They feel good, shoot well, and don't seem to hang up or drag on a draw.
But as was said, a Tyler T grip and the factory wood works pretty well too.
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Old 03-06-2010, 03:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by murphydog View Post
Good comments. I found the Crimson Trace Lasergrips to be a good compromise, especially the ones with hard sides and rubber front and rear - long and tacky enough to hang onto but unsticky on the sides. Do you use a pocket holster?
I always use a pocket holster. I've got several for the J-frames--Nemesis, Galco horsehide, Mika, Safariland and Uncle Mike's come to mind. The J-frame works well with all of them. Oddly enough, the ones I use the most are the cheapest--the Uncle Mike's. The Mika is a close second.

I don't buy many new guns but I'm always buying and trying new holsters.
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Old 03-06-2010, 03:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by redlevel View Post
Nothing beats the factory magnas and a Tyler T-grip on j-frame snubs. Like God and S&W intended.

My Model-60, so outfitted, is in my pocket right now. Hardly noticeable, well concealed.
If the factory magnas are so great, why was the Tyler T invented? They were invented to solve a problem created by the factory . . . grips that don't fit the consumer's hand.
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Old 03-06-2010, 04:09 PM
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Ahrends tactical J frame grips work for me. A good balance between control and concealibility.
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Old 03-06-2010, 04:35 PM
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I prefer to go the deeper pocket approach vs boot grips on my 642. Never a problem with concealment and much better grip & control. I bought a pair of J Synthetic Full Size Grip directly from S&W's website.
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Old 03-06-2010, 08:45 PM
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you can see the smooth wood aherns on the NY-1 model 60 here....it is high speed low drag from the pocket.

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Old 03-06-2010, 08:57 PM
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[QUOTE=redlevel;135383217]Nothing beats the factory magnas and a Tyler T-grip on j-frame snubs. Like S&W intended. [Quote]

+1,000.I carry my 37-2 this way.
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Old 03-06-2010, 09:45 PM
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I tried the regular Smith wood stocks on an M49. Fairly soon I had a Tyler T grip adaptor on the gun. That worked OK, but I wasn't as happy with them as I wanted to be. As soon as I found the rubber Spegels from Uncle Mike's I put them on all the snubnoses I carry often.
They work best for me.

When they were going out of production I scooped up all I could just in case I bought more snubs.
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Old 03-07-2010, 11:03 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Repellere View Post
If the factory magnas are so great, why was the Tyler T invented? They were invented to solve a problem created by the factory . . . grips that don't fit the consumer's hand.
I've wondered the same thing a long time.

Eagle Secret Service or Hogue Compacs for me. Looks great, works great.

John
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Old 03-07-2010, 11:10 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dogguy View Post
Earlier this week, I got reacquainted with the reason I first got a S&W J-frame. It's gotten a little warmer around here, so a coat hasn't been necessary. When I left work one afternoon I had to run a few errands. I took my 642 out of the truck and, as is usual, I put it in my pocket. I can't carry at work--government building...illegal to possess weapons, etc.

I proceeded to the supermarket to pick up a few things. When I got out of the truck, I noticed the Pachmayr Compac grips of the 642 was showing. I tried to adjust it but those Compac grips are not really "compact". I had to pull out my shirttail to be sure the gun was concealed.

This got me to thinking. I have acquired several J-frame snubbies over the past few years. I got them for concealment and for pocket carry especially. But over time, I've managed to outfit all of them with larger rubber Pachmayr or Hogue grips. They carry fine in belt holsters and they are more comfortable to shoot but they are hardly pocketable anymore.

So I went through my gun stuff boxes and tried different grips. The rubber boot grips that came with the J-frames and the various other small grips that fill the area behind the trigger guard do not fit for diddly. I end up with a two-finger grip down low on the gun that is not at all secure. So finally I settled on the Smith Dyamondwood laminated grips for those guns I will pocket. They are small, thin and hard and they hurt like hell when you go through a 50-round box of ammo at the range, standard or +P. But the guns are now pocketable again and, after all, that is the reason I have them.
I've tried a lot and for my money the original Spegal bootgrips in hardwood (like cocobolo) are best - get the ones with the "high horn" for better grip.
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Old 03-07-2010, 12:01 PM
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I bought my 638 specifically for pocket carry and it goes with me nearly every day. I just left the factory grips on it and while it's not something I'm going to shoot a lot for fun, it's perfectly controllable and more accurate than I am.

I use the Galco pocket holster that is on the S&W website. My wife got it for me for Christmas and it works as good as if not better than any pocket holster I've ever used.
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Old 03-07-2010, 07:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Repellere View Post
If the factory magnas are so great, why was the Tyler T invented? They were invented to solve a problem created by the factory . . . grips that don't fit the consumer's hand.
Of course, it depends on the consumer and his/her hand.

The current factory rubber boot grips don't fit my hand. All the aftermarket grips I've tried have the filler behind the trigger guard, serving the same purpose of the Tyler T-grip, and none of them fit my hand either unless the grip is made larger. The Pachmayr Compac and Hogue Monogrip both fit my hands well but they make the gun too big for normal pocket carry. So, for now, my best compromise remains the S&W magna-style grips.
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Old 03-07-2010, 07:39 PM
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Model 49 with factory magna's and a T grip are in my pocket right now....
-doesn't print thru my pants
-factory panels don't slow the draw, like "rubber" grips
-it ain't a target gun, I just need it for close range defensive work....and the grip on there does that just fine....
However, to each their own
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Old 03-20-2010, 09:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by -db- View Post
A good series of videos on snubs, carry and use from a law enforcement training perspective: POSA Video Network at Officer.com -- Defensive Snub Revolver - part1

BTT for this link to excellent videos...
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Old 03-20-2010, 09:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by redlevel View Post
Nothing beats the factory magnas and a Tyler T-grip on j-frame snubs. Like God and S&W intended.

My Model-60, so outfitted, is in my pocket right now. Hardly noticeable, well concealed.
Another AMEN Brother!

My 36 no dash is that way too.
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Old 03-20-2010, 10:30 PM
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I'll vote for the magna stocks and a t grip. I have used that set up for over forty years. With my BUG and off duty I use a Galco belly band or Galco ankle glove holster 90% of the time. Not ideal for a fast draw, but easy concealment and comfortable. On occasion I'll use a Mika pocket holster.
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Old 03-21-2010, 12:00 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Repellere View Post
If the factory magnas are so great, why was the Tyler T invented? They were invented to solve a problem created by the factory . . . grips that don't fit the consumer's hand.
Hey, why did God invent bacon? To go with eggs, of course. The factory magnas (especially on a j-frame), and a T-grip is just one of those perfect combinations where one just makes the other outstanding. As far as looks are concerned, I personally like the retro-60s-70s look, but looks really mean nothing to me when it comes to a defense gun. Well, as long as it looks like a S&W revolver or a 1911.

I have to show this one off now and then, just for the newer members. I have fallen in several creeks with this one in my hip pocket since 1973.
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Old 03-21-2010, 12:08 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Repellere View Post
If the factory magnas are so great, why was the Tyler T invented? They were invented to solve a problem created by the factory . . . grips that don't fit the consumer's hand.
Factory magna's fit the hands of my wife just fine, no T-Grip needed. Factory grips didn't create the problem, actually there is no problem at all.....only solutions for folks with different needs, hand size, grip style, etc.
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Old 03-21-2010, 12:17 AM
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You need 'deep pockets' to buy a J frame now, so you may as well get deep pockets in your pants!

I wear Levi 'relaxed fit' and the pocket has no problem hiding my 342 completely. More importantly, it can be removed with relative ease also. The factory grips on my 342 work well for me also, but I can't argue with the magna/tyler logic.
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Old 03-21-2010, 05:42 PM
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redleveel;

I like the way you have your 36 set up :-}. My nickel sb 36 gave me lots of off duty company through the 70's and 80's
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Old 03-21-2010, 06:25 PM
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Factory grips and a Tyler T.

I have also used the Herretts, the ones that cover the back strap, but they are a little bit bigger.
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Old 03-21-2010, 07:25 PM
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I recently bought a no lock 642 and immediately contacted Patrick aka Executioner to craft a set of high horn stags.
Works great for me.
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Old 03-22-2010, 10:14 AM
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I carry my 637 almost exclusively in my pocket and use a set of Grashorn elk grips and a Tyler T grip. The elk grips have just enough bark for a good grip, but do not hang up in the pocket like checkered grips (plus they look good!). Before the Grashorn grips, I used smooth Hogue grips. On my 940, which I carry in a IWB or belt holster, I have CT grips, which are just too "sticky" for my comfort for pocket carry.
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Old 03-22-2010, 10:23 AM
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My 642 with CT laser grips and a Del Fatti pocket holster is tough combo to beat. It disappears in the front pocket, even in jeans.

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Old 03-22-2010, 10:34 AM
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Default Kelly Arms grips

I usually pocket carry my Model 60 and have made a few mods to facilitate this. I had it bobbed, put a touch of fluorescent paint on the sight, and installed some checkered Rosewood boot grips on it by Kelly Arms.
Kelley Arms Home page
They look beautiful, feel great, and the price is right ($45). With these grips the gun fits in my pocket much better and slides out easily on the draw. The rubber Uncle Mike's that came with the gun fit my hand better, are more comfortable, and reduce recoil but for pocket carry the Kelly grips are the way to go.
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Old 03-23-2010, 03:32 PM
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I use a Uncle Mike's pocket holster almost all time.

My 638 goes with me everywhere I go.
  #37  
Old 03-23-2010, 04:30 PM
ozzie9 ozzie9 is offline
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I find that my model 38 carries just fine in a Don Hume pocket holster.
The gun is always ready as it doesnt move a bit in the pocket.
The lint problem is a lot less too.
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Old 03-23-2010, 08:33 PM
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I have a 3" 36 which I've fitted with Uncle Mike's full length grips from Smith. Sounds a bit bulky but, believe me, the gun fits easily into a front pocket of my cargo pants without the slightest printing. The Uncle Mikes, btw, are supremely comfortable with any .38 special round. They're a bit longer than the traditional boot grip, meaning that I can wrap my pinkie finger around the grip. They cover the gun's entire backstrap, which means that they fill my hand nicely, and the rubber over the backstrap really cushions against recoil. Love the gun, love the grips.
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Old 03-24-2010, 01:33 AM
PMRet PMRet is offline
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640 no dash .38 Special, Uncle Mike's combat grips, Lobo Gunleather pocket holster.
  #40  
Old 03-24-2010, 02:02 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Glock 'em down View Post
Amen brother! Both of my mighty J frames (models 36 & 38) wear factory magnas and Tylers.
+1 on that. Some times "Old School" is the "Best School".
  #41  
Old 03-24-2010, 11:36 PM
Lt JL Lt JL is offline
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I agree whole-heartedly with Redlevel and Glock em down. Smith knew what they were doing with the J frames. I use factory issue on several, although a confess to a spot in my heart for Colt D frames, too.
  #42  
Old 03-26-2010, 08:15 AM
Beretta682 Beretta682 is offline
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Tyler t-grip and a Barami hip grip. Fits perfect in any holster, including my ankle rig. Mine is a 342pd and it works perfectly with a pair of jogging shorts with no pockets and a t shirt.
  #43  
Old 03-26-2010, 10:10 AM
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I have these Ahrends on my constant companion, but also thinking of the Magnas and T-grip combo.

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Old 04-05-2010, 12:59 AM
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I sometimes carry my 3" 60-15 in a homemade pocket holster of my own design. Some of my baggier jeans/cargo pants have deep enough pockets for this application. The standard pockets will show a small portion of the grip but an untucked shirt/sweater takes care of that. Smaller boot grips would hide better but I can't shoot well with those. The hook at the bottom contains an "L" shaped wire and is canted to the side so the holster stays in the pocket while drawing. The flap on the mouth also serves the same purpose. Works for me.





  #45  
Old 04-05-2010, 04:53 AM
DoubleGs DoubleGs is offline
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I too, am hapy with the factory grips, though I have XXL hands. Just what you're used to probably. I have found that the brand of jeans is more important to me than which grip. Harley-Davidson sells nice rugged jeans - whether you ride or not - with wider/deeper back pockets that hold my 642 in a Nemesis holster with the appearence of a wallet.
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Old 04-07-2010, 09:14 PM
Gearhead Jim Gearhead Jim is offline
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Good thread!

I've been pocket-carrying some kind of J-frame for 30+ years, currently a 340PD.

For me, the factory Bantam grips seem to be the best compromise between ease-of-draw, control, and shooting comfort. After a while they lose their "tacky" feel but still stick well in the hand.

For years I used the Uncle Mike's pocket holster, it works well and is cheap; need to replace about once a year so it doesn't mold to the gun too much and come out with the draw.

For the last year I've been using the Safariland pocket holster. More expensive but never molds to the gun, and covers the outline better in my pocket.

I keep a Safariland speedloader between the holster and my leg, surprisingly comfortable and the loader does not print at all.
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Old 04-08-2010, 05:01 PM
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My only issue with pocket carry is that the butt of the gun seems to shine out of the pocket. I think Im just paranoid. Its a M38 Ive tried the factory grips and the bantham rubber grips. Both I see peeping from my white lined pockets.
  #48  
Old 04-09-2010, 09:45 AM
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I had that same problem (butt slightly sticking out of some of my pockets) which is why I put on the Kelly Arms boot grips. That problem is completely gone now.
  #49  
Old 04-09-2010, 09:54 PM
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Default My grips and holster.

Quote:
Originally Posted by hedge313 View Post
I have Hogue bantam grips on both of my 60s, and pocket carry with no ill effects.
I cannot get away from the Hogue Bantam grips either. I've tried others but these one piece semi-hard rubber grips really work. They cushion recoil very well, do not have a screw and fit the gun like a glove. My hand just melts into them. Also on pocket holsters, I keep going back to my Mitch Rosen from Dillon. A great pocket holster!
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Old 05-03-2018, 01:52 PM
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Do you just put it in your pocket or do you carry in a pocket "holster?"

I use Uncle Mike's pocket holster for my J-Frame and in my front right pocket it goes nowhere it shouldn't. I do like the standard J-Frame Boot Grip a lot but right now my gun is wearing Altamont's black and silver boot.
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1911, 340pd, 640, 642, ahrends, airweight, cocobolo, concealed, crimson, executioner, glock, hogue, j frame, kramer, leather, lock, model 60, pachmayr, safariland, snubnose, speedloader, spegel, tactical

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