Tips for Building a Concealed Carry Rig

by
posted on March 10, 2017
sheriff-jim-5-28-15.jpg (2)

We always advise the new defensive shooter to get the best quality firearm that they can possibly afford when it is the gun that their life might depend on. The rest of the story is that the same advice holds true when we are considering a holster, belt and ammo carrier to go with that concealed-carry handgun. Too much is not enough to pay when a life may hang in the balance.

Too often, we see defensive shooters with a useful handgun that is coupled with holsters, belts and ammo carriers that must have been purchased at some bargain-basement sale. The holster is soft, floppy and doesn't even begin to hold the handgun securely. The belt is so soft that it sags and adds to the potential for the gun to fall out of the holster. In addition, the ammo carriers are often so bizarre that you couldn't get a reload out of them with a search warrant. It's also a good idea to keep in mind that a one-size-fits-all holster really doesn't fit anything.

The concealed-carry holster should be built for one particular model of the gun. Whether made of Kydex or leather, the holster should be snug enough that it aids in holding the handgun securely. In addition, any retaining device should be positive and, at the same time, simple to manipulate as an integral part of the draw stroke. 

A properly made defensive holster will last for years of use but when it becomes too soft and flexible, it should be replaced. Most of us have seen the photos on social media of the soft leather holster that interacted with the trigger of a striker-fired pistol and resulted in the painful perforation of the individual's nether region. That's the sort of thing that will make your eyes water more than a little bit.

The belt that is chosen should be stiff enough that it holds its shape and doesn't sag with the weight of the handgun and ammo carrier. It should also be of the same width as the holster's belt slots. This allows for the best concealment by holding the gun snugly against the body and keeping the holstered gun from getting out of place due to sloppy fit.

A magazine pouch or ammo carrier should also fit the belt securely. In addition, it should hold the extra ammunition in such a way that spare magazines can be managed with one hand during a reload. Just as with the holster, any retention devices should be positive but easy to manipulate.

When it comes to concealed carry gear, we live in the best of worlds. A number of large companies manufacture equipment that is made of quality material and fitted to a particular firearm. It doesn't matter if you prefer Kydex or leather, there are quite a number of companies that can meet your needs and do it with quality. In addition, there are quite a number of smaller one-person shops that build great stuff for the defensive shooter.

Just as with the defensive handgun, good concealed carry gear isn't cheap, but good gear won't let you down when your life is at stake. Shop wisely. None of us need a lot of defensive gear, but what we buy ought to enhance our ability to survive, not detract from it.

Latest

Rifle with suppressor and scope facing right
Rifle with suppressor and scope facing right

First Look: New Magpul Hunter American Stock and Enhanced Ejection Port Cover

Magpul has been releasing a number of new products for 2022; we take a look at the new Hunter American stock and the enhanced ejection port cover now available.

First Look: Springfield Armory Hellion Bullpup Rifle

Springfield Armory recently announced the new Hellion series of rifles, a platform that offers superior ballistic performance in a short, modular and fully ambidextrous 5.56 NATO bullpup design. 

I Carry: American Tactical FXS-9 Pistol in a Kinetic Concealment Holster

In today's episode of "I Carry," we have the brand-new American Tactical FXS-9 pistol in a Kinetic Concealment holster along with a Nightstick handheld flashlight.

First Look: SIG Sauer MCX-Spear Rifle

SIG Sauer recently introduced the MCX-Spear Rifle, which is an expansion of the MCX series of rifles and is chambered in .277 Fury.

How Does a Thumb Safety on a Handgun Work?

Thumb safeties, such as those found on 1911s, are but one type of manual safety commonly found on many handguns selected for concealed carry and/or personal protection.

How to Use Automotive Products for Firearm Maintenance

I just turned 21 and I am in the process of buying my first handgun. Although I am just getting started with pistols and revolvers, I am pretty mechanically inclined, which I learned by working on automobiles and automotive machinery.

Interests



Get the best of Shooting Illustrated delivered to your inbox.