Most comfortable firearm/holster for conceal carry.

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I wrote a post in the knife fighting thread about guns and holsters. It occurred to me that it could lead to an interesting thread. I always carry my knife because it's quick and easy and comfortable and I need a knife for doing knife things pretty routinely. I seldom carry my gun because it's heavy and bulky and uncomfortable and up till now I haven't needed it. However, I should carry it. I went to the trouble to get the conceal carry permit and buy all this stuff and train with it, may as well carry it. So my question is which firearm and which holster is the most comfortable to carry in your opinion? I currently have a 40 caliber Smith and Wesson M&P with a plastic Alien Gear shape shift holster. I tend to carry inside the waist band at the 5 O-clock position which is over right rear thigh. I have a leather IWB holster that is just two flaps but I'm not happy with how well it protects the trigger and since its just two flaps of leather, once drawn it's pretty hard to re-holster the weapon.
 

jmf552

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I think that varies from person to person, depending on how you like to carry, how you dress and your body type. There is a LOT of discussion on that on the Defensive Carry forum, but no one consensus.

I like pocket carry for convenience and concealment, but it does not work well for larger guns. I like OWB 3:00 for larger guns, but that does not conceal well. AIWB seems to be the fastest and the most secure against attempts to take your weapon, but it can also be hard to conceal unless you are really thin. I keep experimenting and changing my mind. It is an ongoing process.

BTW, I would be careful about depending on a knife for SD. I carry one as a tool, but the legal system seems to be more harsh on the use of knives in SD.
 
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I think that varies from person to person, depending on how you like to carry, how you dress and your body type. There is a LOT of discussion on that on the Defensive Carry forum, but no one consensus.

I like pocket carry for convenience and concealment, but it does not work well for larger guns. I like OWB 3:00 for larger guns, but that does not conceal well. AIWB seems to be the fastest and the most secure against attempts to take your weapon, but it can also be hard to conceal unless you are really thin. I keep experimenting and changing my mind. It is an ongoing process.

BTW, I would be careful about depending on a knife for SD. I carry one as a tool, but the legal system seems to be more harsh on the use of knives in SD.
I agree, particularly with the legal system and knives. I'm not very thin, not anymore anyway, and I figure that ship has probably sailed at this point. I've never been able to point a gun at my crotch either, I don't know how other people can do it.
 
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When I hike I carry my handgun in a ribz pack: RibzWear it works out great. But a person can look ridiculous hiking, not so much everywhere else.
 

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Ive started appendix carring with a Tier 1 Concealment holster. It conceals well and Im not thin lol plus it has an extra mag holder and once I got use to it its surprisingly comfortable.
When I dont use that holster I love the crossbreed holster at the 4 oclock position super comfortable I often forget I even have it on. That was my go to for years lately its been the Tier 1 for me.
 
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I wrote a post in the knife fighting thread about guns and holsters. It occurred to me that it could lead to an interesting thread. I always carry my knife because it's quick and easy and comfortable and I need a knife for doing knife things pretty routinely. I seldom carry my gun because it's heavy and bulky and uncomfortable and up till now I haven't needed it.
Couple things...
If you're not carrying because it's too heavy and bulky, get a different gun. If you don't carry it because you haven't needed it... you might well not survive if you ever do need it.
However, I should carry it. I went to the trouble to get the conceal carry permit and buy all this stuff and train with it, may as well carry it. So my question is which firearm and which holster is the most comfortable to carry in your opinion? I currently have a 40 caliber Smith and Wesson M&P with a plastic Alien Gear shape shift holster. I tend to carry inside the waist band at the 5 O-clock position which is over right rear thigh. I have a leather IWB holster that is just two flaps but I'm not happy with how well it protects the trigger and since its just two flaps of leather, once drawn it's pretty hard to re-holster the weapon.
I'm a big fan of Alien Gear holsters. If they're not comfortable, you just haven't adjusted them right for your body, or you just haven't worn it enough to get used to the feeling. I've got a huge box full of holsters. I've got an Alien Gear for every model of gun I own, plus some other brands for specific guns. In the last decade, I think I've carried in something other than an AG a handful of times.
 

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Ive started appendix carring with a Tier 1 Concealment holster. It conceals well and Im not thin lol plus it has an extra mag holder and once I got use to it its surprisingly comfortable.
When I dont use that holster I love the crossbreed holster at the 4 oclock position super comfortable I often forget I even have it on. That was my go to for years lately its been the Tier 1 for me.
Ick.
I will never appendix carry. While it's true that modern firearms are extremely reliable mechanically, unintentional discharges are a real thing. If that happens with a holster at the hip or behind, you're going to hit fat. Nothing all that vital. If that happens when appendix carrying, you are far more likely to hit something important.
Gotta agree with you about the crossbreed. They're really nice, once they have time for the leather to break in. They're very similar to the AG. The two big differences are that AG uses neoprene, which I think breaths better and requires zero break in, and cost. My favorite local shop carries the AG for like $30.
 

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Ick.
I will never appendix carry. While it's true that modern firearms are extremely reliable mechanically, unintentional discharges are a real thing. If that happens with a holster at the hip or behind, you're going to hit fat. Nothing all that vital. If that happens when appendix carrying, you are far more likely to hit something important.
Gotta agree with you about the crossbreed. They're really nice, once they have time for the leather to break in. They're very similar to the AG. The two big differences are that AG uses neoprene, which I think breaths better and requires zero break in, and cost. My favorite local shop carries the AG for like $30.
Meh Ive been around 1000s of guns for decades between the military and law enforcement never seen one just go off for no reason. Could it happen sure but my brakes in my car could fail also but im not going to give up driving. For me its the fastest and most natural draw and presenting of a weapon. Its comfortable and very concealable. But I honestly dont care where someone else carries as long as they actually do.
 

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Honestly, one of the most important, and most frequently overlooked, elements of comfortable carry is: A GOOD GUN BELT. Most people seem to use a belt that is not made for the purpose. "It's a quality leather belt" they'll tell me but in the end, it doesn't work well for supporting a gun. It will sag, stretch, deform, and usually isn't sufficiently adjustable to give the customized fit that makes carry comfortable. For 9 our of 10 people, this is where their "Carry System" fails.

If it's not comfortable to carry your gun, my first advice is usually, "buy an actual gun-belt." There are dozens of brands ranging from the basic but functional with cobra buckles or slip buckles where you'll pay maybe $30 or something (they LOOK like gun belts), up through some very high dollar steel belted/reinforced leather stuff you could wear to a wedding.

But for holsters, a quality kydex OWB with a "sweat shield" (that protects from chafing at the skin), at 3 o'clock is the most comfortable carry for me. A nice covering garment, like an untucked shirt with a long shirt tail (or a vest, or a cardigan, or a sweat-shirt, or hoodie, or...), hides it.

Peace favor your sword,
Kirk
 

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I wrote a post in the knife fighting thread about guns and holsters. It occurred to me that it could lead to an interesting thread. I always carry my knife because it's quick and easy and comfortable and I need a knife for doing knife things pretty routinely. I seldom carry my gun because it's heavy and bulky and uncomfortable and up till now I haven't needed it. However, I should carry it. I went to the trouble to get the conceal carry permit and buy all this stuff and train with it, may as well carry it. So my question is which firearm and which holster is the most comfortable to carry in your opinion? I currently have a 40 caliber Smith and Wesson M&P with a plastic Alien Gear shape shift holster. I tend to carry inside the waist band at the 5 O-clock position which is over right rear thigh. I have a leather IWB holster that is just two flaps but I'm not happy with how well it protects the trigger and since its just two flaps of leather, once drawn it's pretty hard to re-holster the weapon.

I like the Crossbreed IWB holster. It's a kydex holster that cover the trigger and is easy to reholster

I carry at 5 o'clock and it comfortable and doesn't print alot even with tee shirts.

Most days I don't even feel it and have to touch it to reassure my gun is still there.

I like it better than the alien gear because it comes with much more durable metal belt clips.
 
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CB Jones

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Honestly, one of the most important, and most frequently overlooked, elements of comfortable carry is: A GOOD GUN BELT. Most people seem to use a belt that is not made for the purpose. "It's a quality leather belt" they'll tell me but in the end, it doesn't work well for supporting a gun. It will sag, stretch, deform, and usually isn't sufficiently adjustable to give the customized fit that makes carry comfortable. For 9 our of 10 people, this is where their "Carry System" fails.

If it's not comfortable to carry your gun, my first advice is usually, "buy an actual gun-belt." There are dozens of brands ranging from the basic but functional with cobra buckles or slip buckles where you'll pay maybe $30 or something (they LOOK like gun belts), up through some very high dollar steel belted/reinforced leather stuff you could wear to a wedding.

But for holsters, a quality kydex OWB with a "sweat shield" (that protects from chafing at the skin), at 3 o'clock is the most comfortable carry for me. A nice covering garment, like an untucked shirt with a long shirt tail (or a vest, or a cardigan, or a sweat-shirt, or hoodie, or...), hides it.

Peace favor your sword,
Kirk

Nexbelt Tactical Ratchet belts....they are great.
 

Dirty Dog

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Meh Ive been around 1000s of guns for decades between the military and law enforcement never seen one just go off for no reason. Could it happen sure but my brakes in my car could fail also but im not going to give up driving. For me its the fastest and most natural draw and presenting of a weapon. Its comfortable and very concealable. But I honestly dont care where someone else carries as long as they actually do.
It's not about "just go[ing] off", it's about human error. "I'm perfect and will never always draw and reholster absolutely perfectly" is an unreasonable attitude. Using your analogy, it's not about the brakes failing, it's about you making an error while driving.
 

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It's not about "just go[ing] off", it's about human error. "I'm perfect and will never always draw and reholster absolutely perfectly" is an unreasonable attitude. Using your analogy, it's not about the brakes failing, it's about you making an error while driving.

I've never liked appendix carry either. Never found it comfortable and was uneasy with it pointing at my junk.

Also, even though it is a easier draw....I always felt I could conceal alot of my draw from the 5 o'clock position by making it look like I'm reaching for my wallet or phone, etc...

Also, in my line of work our customers check the appendix area more than they do 5 oclock carry.
 

ballen0351

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It's not about "just go[ing] off", it's about human error. "I'm perfect and will never always draw and reholster absolutely perfectly" is an unreasonable attitude. Using your analogy, it's not about the brakes failing, it's about you making an error while driving.
Well considering every accident on the road is caused by human error in some form or fashion driving is a risk Im willing to take. Using properly trained safety measures will ensure Im as "perfect" as I can be.
Appendix carry is not more dangerous than any other location on your body. Anytime you have a gun on you there is a risk of human error being present and you or someone else being hurt or killed. So again like driving you must weigh the risks, your experience, and training level and decide what's best for you. Having been carrying and training with weapons my entire adult life professionally and on my own time and having attended multiple advanced level training courses I see no issue with Appendix carry nor do many industry experts and trainers in the field. You dont like it that's cool dont do it.
 

ballen0351

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Honestly, one of the most important, and most frequently overlooked, elements of comfortable carry is: A GOOD GUN BELT. Most people seem to use a belt that is not made for the purpose. "It's a quality leather belt" they'll tell me but in the end, it doesn't work well for supporting a gun. It will sag, stretch, deform, and usually isn't sufficiently adjustable to give the customized fit that makes carry comfortable. For 9 our of 10 people, this is where their "Carry System" fails.

If it's not comfortable to carry your gun, my first advice is usually, "buy an actual gun-belt." There are dozens of brands ranging from the basic but functional with cobra buckles or slip buckles where you'll pay maybe $30 or something (they LOOK like gun belts), up through some very high dollar steel belted/reinforced leather stuff you could wear to a wedding.
100% agree with this.
 

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Appendix carry is not more dangerous than any other location on your body.

I disagree.

If you do have an AD while drawing with the appendix carry the gun is pointing at much more vital areas than the gun at 3 - 5 o'clock.

The AD is still human error but the error has more dire consequences in the Appendix carry position...therefore anyone carrying in the appendix position needs to be squared away.
 

ballen0351

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I disagree.

If you do have an AD while drawing with the appendix carry the gun is pointing at much more vital areas than the gun at 3 - 5 o'clock.
If you look at the mechanics of the draw from the appendix you're actually pushing the barrel away from your body as you draw. Now look at the mechanics of how most people holster at the 3-5 o'clock position they lead with the barrel pointing into the body
The AD is still human error but the error has more dire consequences in the Appendix carry position...therefore anyone carrying in the appendix position needs to be squared away.
I disagree if you are carrying at any position you should be "squared away" regardless of the location
 
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