Friday, July 13, 2007

Concealed Carry

This is a subject that crops up in my thoughts from time to time, seeing as how I do have a concealed carry permit.

The direction of my thoughts today are not the why, but the how.

See, we setters don't have as many options for concealed carry as the pointers do, simply because of how we're built, and how clothes are designed to fit us.

So far, I've only discovered a few that work effectively, and even those are bound by certain things I just can't do and keep my concealed weapon concealed. A couple of these are listed here, and I'd be glad to hear any suggestions from my readers on expanding or altering these.

Shoulder holster. I don't personally use this one, as I haven't yet found a shoulder rig thats built for women, much less one as small as I am. Custom work is an option, but I haven't had the money, or the access to someone who can do the work, to try it out. The difficulty that I see for the average woman in these is twofold. Fit, and angle. The angle is important, because frankly, no one wants to catch a boob in their gun. This same problem rears its head with hip holsters. Not to mention the boobs getting in the way of the draw in the first place. Also, wearing a jacket or such at all times is just not practical in summer heat.

Inside the waistband holster. I've used this, and its the best method I've found for myself personally, although I do have a few requirements that others don't. I use what I've been told is called a "cavalry" draw. I'm right handed, and as a child I broke my right arm in such a way that I don't have complete movement of it at the shoulder. So when I draw, the options are limited. many carry styles leave me sweeping areas around me with the barrel of my gun that I don't want to. As such, I carry in the small of my back, with the gun positioned so that my right hand goes between my body and the grip, and my draw is out, down to my side, and up to firing stance. However, this carry has dress requirements as well. I have to wear a baggy shirt to cover the imprint of the gun. Not a big thing, in the scheme of things, but annoying enough when I really want to wear something a little cooler.

The major problems for women in concealed carry, as I see them, are the chest and the hips. Hip carry sticks the butt of the gun out, or shoves it into a woman's side, depending on her own build and how low on her hips her pants or jeans ride. Shoulder holsters, and some hip holsters, pose the problem of the breasts simply getting in the way of the draw. No matter how big or small you are in that area, they get in the way. If men wish to understand this, borrow a female friend's bra, stuff it with whatever is handy, and attempt to do the things you normally do. And remember, breasts don't just stick out in front, they stick out to the sides as well, stuff accordingly. Better yet, have said female friend help you make it as anatomically correct as possible.

(From the stories that Farmmom has told me of her classes when she became a posse member on the Sheriff's department, this should be a requirement for male firearms instructors. So should having the skin of their chest right by the armpit pinched in the hammer of their gun.)

Like I said, any suggestions or comments are welcome.

And, if any of the male readers are brave enough to try the experiment I mentioned, I want video!