Well Armed Woman: Concealed Carry Holsters

As I mentioned in an article last week, I am interested in joining my local Well Armed Woman chapter.

I contacted the chapter leader and was immediately excited. Why? Because this particular meeting was going to be about picking a concealed carry holster. Since I have reached a point in my training that I feel comfortable enough to carry concealed, I am all about learning more about holsters. There are so many options out there and honestly, I didn’t know where to start. I was concerned about spending lots of money only to find that the holster I selected is not what I want. After going to this meeting, that concern was validated and I am very glad that I waited.

When I arrived, I was immediately greeted by the chapter leader. I signed in and went straight into the room. A brief introduction was made by a female range instructor, followed by some Q&A time. We were then set free in the room to try on all of the different types of holsters.

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There were 4 tables set up with different sizes and shapes of holsters. The instructors were there to offer advice/information regarding material, which belts to use, and where to place a weapon you’re trying to conceal.

As we all know, concealing a weapon on a woman is significantly harder for women then it is for men. We have tighter clothes, smaller pockets, and items of clothing with thinner material. One of the very first things we can rule out is pocket holsters. I can hardly fit my car keys in my pocket, let alone a 9mm handgun.

Next, we determined that any holster that does not fully cover the trigger/trigger guard on your weapon is not exactly a safe choice. Not only can clothing zippers and strings get caught on it and pull, but it also gets the shooter in a bad habit of immediately placing their finger on the trigger before removing the gun.

We also discussed the pros and cons of having a ‘snap’ over of your gun to hold it in your holster. This not only makes it hard for someone to take your gun, but it also provides an extra step for you to take when you’re already in a bad situation. The instructor showed 2 alternative options. One holster was specifically made for her gun which allowed it to lock in tightly. The second option had a latch that you can to push forward in order to release the gun from the holster. This, in my opinion, was a great holster.

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As I made my rounds from table to table, I tried on both leather holsters, Kydex holsters, and a combination of Kydex and leather. The fully leather holsters were a little unsturdy when faced with the weight of the handgun. Part of this could have been blamed on the belt I was wearing, but it was just falling forward. The Kydex holsters were surprisingly comfortable, although I felt it was a tad too bulky. My favorite was a Kydex/leather holster called Galco King Tuck. It fit inside of my jeans and clipped over my belt to help keep it in place. It fit nicely in the small of my back and would easily conceal a 9mm handgun.

TIP: To help break in a leather holster, add leather conditioner to the inside of the holster. Wrap your UNLOADED handgun in saran wrap and work in and out over and over again.

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This Kydex holster is held up by my belt. Didn’t fall forward like the fully leather holsters, but did sag a little bit.

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This was one of the leather holsters that I did like. It clipped to the inside of my jeans. It was extremely comfortable and laid close on my abdomen.

Below are photos of the Galco King Tuk (my favorite holster of the night). I took photos of the holster with and without a gun, just to give a better idea of how it fits into the back of my jeans.IMG_1207 IMG_1206 IMG_1204 IMG_1202I then went over to the shoulder holsters that were laid out. I had thought about purchasing a shoulder holster in the past for when I want to carry during winter months. However, once it was held up and we put it on, I noticed that the gun in the holster points backwards. At first, this wouldn’t seem like too much of a big deal, except this means that you’re gun is pointing at people behind you. One of the first rules you learn when shooting is to always keep the gun pointed in a safe direction.
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The next holster I tried on was an ankle holster. I wouldn’t necessarily use this as my primary weapon, but it would definitely be a good back-up. The instructor also brought up the point that this would be easier to access in the event that you’re sitting in a car or laying on the ground during an attack.

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The next couple of holsters I tried on were different style ‘belly belts’. They kind of reminded me of an ace bandage. Although they were extremely comfortable, having velcro hold my handgun up makes me a little uneasy.

Next, I looked over a table of purses made for concealed carry. Built-in holsters and removable holsters were both options. I’ve always been hesitant about purses because people can easily take them from you. If an attacker demands your purse, you are left either unarmed and/or having to call the police to inform them that a criminal now has your handgun (that’s assuming you didn’t have your phone in your purse).

In the event that you would prefer to carry in your purse, the instructor recommended using a revolver because the slide won’t catch on any fabric and you can continue to shoot.

The last one we spoke over was a thigh holster. We were advised to always place the holster on the inside of your non-dominant leg. This makes it easy to grab and easier to conceal. (If gun was placed on the outside on your dominant leg, you will have a gun print showing through your dress).

An important thing to remember when you’re considering to carry a concealed handgun is to keep it with you 100% of the time. Practice how to draw from your holster and get comfortable wearing it. The meeting was extremely informative and I really enjoyed looking into all of the different options. To end the evening, we grabbed our guns and filled the lanes. It never hurts to get a couple rounds of target practice in!

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Is The Body Blanket Giving Children a False Sense of Security?

In my previous post I provided my own opinion as to why I think The Body Blanket is not safer for children in the event of a school shooting. My original reasons included the following:

One problem: Price is a huge obstacle. At about $1,000 per blanket, most schools can not afford to purchase enough blankets to protect every student in the event of a school shooting.

 

Another problem: This is really just a security blanket. If the shooter had a 9mm handgun (MAYBE) or an extremely low-power rifle, this could protect them from the bullet. To stop a high-caliber bullet, you would probably be looking at about 3 or 4 of these stacked together.

 

Another problem: These blankets won’t protect you from someone coming over and yanking it off you or rolling you over.

In my opinion, this is a waste of money. Most schools cannot afford these blankets. I think money well spent would be providing faculty with proper firearms training or getting better security for the schools. Heck, even installing thicker doors would be a cheaper option than purchasing $1,000 vests for every student.

With further research and the comments from my readers, I decided to write a ‘part 2’ in hopes of giving you a little more evidence as to why these blankets are not the best idea when considering the safety of these children.

First, here is the video found on the Body Guard Blanket website.

 

As you can see, there were some very large contusions. When taking into consideration how small a child is and looking at the severe amount of force that comes from a bullet, even with a safety device, you have to realize that the force alone is enough to severely injure if not kill a child. Anatomically speaking, children aren’t fully developed therefor do not have the strength, muscle capacity, and body density to withstand something with such traumatic force. In addition to that, these blankets were not tested using rifles. This should have been done especially because rifles are often the weapon of choice for mass shootings.

Killers who set out to massacre large numbers of people, however, often choose assault weapons, including James Holmes in Aurora, Colo. (12 killed, 58 wounded), and Lanza in Newtown (26 killed). Killers used assault weapons in 25 of the 62 mass shootings in the U.S. since 1982, a Mother Jones analysis found — that is, in 40 percent of such crimes. Another study found that mass killers who use assault weapons and/or high-capacity magazines have more than twice the number of victims, with an average of 15.6 people shot.

Take a look at these videos. Here is Richad Davis, the President of Second Chance Body Armor, Inc. shooting himself while wearing his protective vests:

 

First, I want to point out that he shoots “several inches” above the first point of impact. This is because the trauma plates are worn down from absorbing the first shot, meaning that a second shot to the same area would not be absorbed as well (if at all) and could continue into the body. This works for the Body Blankets as well. Multiple shots to this blanket would fail to stop a bullet from hitting a child even coming from a small caliber.

Now, here is another example of someone testing out a bullet proof vest with a handgun. This video shows the damage immediately after.

 

The Body Blanket is a level 3A product which is designed to protect rounds up to a .44 magnum.

Let’s put this into perspective. Here is a video using a level 3A vest against a .223 caliber rifle WHICH has been used in multiple shootings including Sandy Hook, Clakamas Town Center, Aurora, Fort Hood Army Base, and more.

 

Finally, these blankets only cover the top of the individual. There is still a high risk of ricocheting, shots coming from the side, or the shooter simply walking up and pulling the blanket off the student. With all of the information I have provided above, I can and will conclude that these blankets are a bad idea.

Those red blankets endanger children greater with a false sense of security and sets the little ones up to be systematically slaughtered.

-Brittius

 

In conclusion, these blankets are not the best tool when it comes to protecting children from shooters on campus. The amount of money it costs for one blanket can educate faculty and staff on proper gun use and handling as well as give them training on how to DEFEND their students in the event of an attack on campus. Training should be mandatory. If the teachers are against guns, that is fine and is their own choice but at least in this case, they know how to use them and are free to make the decision. If schools do not feel comfortable allowing teachers to carry on campus, then invest some money on better security or install heavier doors and windows.

Selecting A Handgun: Women’s Perspective

I think it’s a pretty decent video for women who are looking to purchase a handgun. It’s always good to do your research to figure out exactly what you’re looking for. Also, ALWAYS shoot the gun before you purchase it. Most shooting ranges will have rentals that you can use to make sure that the gun you are shooting is comfortable for you.