Tag Archives: CCW


Article submitted by Mark Hatfield.

Another good reason to always test your equipment, never trust anything until it has proven itself.

Today, while working as a Range Safety Officer, late in the day, a couple arrived to test their guns.  Both had identical guns, a small five shot revolver, double action only, with a laser.  Note that this laser was never used during shooting, only the traditional ‘iron’ sights.  As I watched them to assess if they could safely handle their guns and not doing anything stupid, I noticed that the woman seemed to have a failure to fire but perhaps she had not fully loaded the gun, I didn’t know.  She mentioned that the gun did not seem to shoot to point of aim and asked me to try it, I did.  I fired two shots at twelve yards, one was right on, the other hit far to the left.  I thought that the shot off to the left was perhaps me, my inconsistency.  She then shot at a paper target which was placed at perhaps five yards distant.

Her group, that is, her cluster of shots, was satisfactory but far to the left of where the gun was aimed.  The man seemed to be having problems also, I fired his gun and all my shots hit in the same place, far left, as had happened for the woman.  I then shot the womans gun on the paper target and my hits were right on top of hers.  I asked one of the other Range Officers to test fire both guns, he had exactly the same results.  In addition to that, both guns occasionally failed to fire, that was with new factory ammunition by Winchester.

This model gun has the sleeved two piece barrel.  When this design first came on the market, Massad Ayoob compared several of them to their older versions which used the traditional method of barrel construction.  In his test, all the newer versions fired groups which were three to four times larger than the older gun, in other words, they were really bad.  Supposedly this problem has been corrected, apparently not.

Consider this, one gun might have a ‘fluke’, a manufacturing defect, perhaps an oversight in the making, or someone got careless in construction but…two identical guns, each with the same two identical problems.  One of the problems being that this is a gun designed specifically for last ditch self defense, to keep you alive and it doesn’t always go bang when you need it to.  Add to that, not being able to put its’ shots where they need to go.  Shame on you Smith & Wesson.  Someone there needs to be taken out and beaten, or sued.

Turn the Tide: Guidelines for Open Carry

Turn the tide

Congratulations Texas. Your incredibly pushy efforts to get open carry have succeeded in getting you a open carry provision added to your state CCW licensure. Open carry comes with certain responsibilities. In this handy guide, we will discuss the steps you need to take to avoid being a open carry douchbag. As our visible representation to the average joe, you are a walking billboard for the gun community. It is your responsibility to carry in a way that turns heads and changes opinions. So here are X steps you need to take to be a representative of gun owners everywhere.

Denial Measures

The first point of discussion is the most important aspect of open carry:  A holster made to carry the pistol in a responsible manner. THE WORST THING we can do is allow our weapon to fall into the wrong hands. Be that it is taken from you by force, or that it simply falls out of that shit nylon holster you got at Bob’s Guns, its high time to realize that if you drop that gun in a public place, or if you are shot or killed with a weapon taken from your person, YOU WILL BE NATIONAL NEWS. You will give countless liberal idiots everything they need to point and scream at how ineffective, dangerous, and meat headed open carry is. If that pistol makes its way out of that nylon holster in the wrong circumstances, you not only could lose your CCW license, but you will make us all look like idiots.

Good Kydex Plus Active Retention: Photo courtesy Bravo Concealment

RETENTION is the name of the game. If you are going to open carry responsibly, you need a retention holster instead of that cheap hydrodipped skull kydex you got off Amazon. True, GOOD KYDEX has passive retention, and this is a good thing, but would it help you if a thug started tugging at the pistol? Active retention buys you security and time. Active retention gives you precious seconds longer to deny a thug your pistol. Good Retention will prevent that pistol from dropping out at the park. Active retention will prevent it from falling out at the park and keep it out of thug hands. Don’t make the news. Go for active retention with open carry. It just makes too much sense.

Dress for success

If you can pull this off and Open Carry, you are doing more for the second amendment than you can possibly imagine.

Dress for success. This is key. As our walking billboard, you need to show the community you live in that, as a gun owner, you are clean, good looking, hell even popular. If you dress like Slob McAllister, you continue to perpetrate stereotypes which work against us. Dress well. It doesn’t have to be business casual, but dress in a manner that represents us. The more loser you look, the more opinions will be re-inforced. We are on the offensive now. Gun ownership is experiencing a resurgence not seen in decades. Help that wave grow by looking damn good, and looking cool as hell. Yes this is a popularity contest. We have to make the other side look like sheepish morons, while we, the gun owners, look like American action stars (if applicable) at best, and at the very least… like an approachable all American guy or gal.  Carry those pocket constitutions in your back pocket and hand out lollipops if necessary. This is a cultural war, and we have to be on the cutting edge and relevant to young adults and all future generations. So look good, and answer questions politely.

Put the Phone Down

Stop recording the cops… Or at least change the strategy. As an open carrier, your going to be approached by police. You may want to record the interaction because sometimes the police are wrong. I know you want to post every bad interaction on YouTube, but when your video starts out with a nice cop asking to see your CCW and you start screaming “AM I BEING DETAINED?? AM I BEING DETANED?!?!” you look like a douchbag.  Stop it. You make us look unreasonable and further the impression of those who are on the fence that we may be, in fact, idiots. Quietly turn on that cell phone, put it in your pocket, and comply with the cops demands to all reasonable ends. If he or she was wrong and you are reasonable with your speech and actions, we, the gun community, will stand behind you. Post that to YouTube and contact your lawyer.

Wrapping Up:


Remember, this is a popularity contest. I don’t care how much you think the Constitution protects your rights, the reality is that it does nothing if the public doesn’t believe in the rights written on it. Nothing could be worse than to let popular opinion of the gun owner turn against us. When the majority of the citizenry believes the constitution is a failed document, and begin to shred it by re-interpreting, restricting protections, and crapping over the brilliance of the founding fathers… then its protections mean nothing. The citizenry is doing that RIGHT NOW. We have to turn the tide. Your job, as a walking billboard for gun owners, is to carry responsibly, to look damn good doing it, and to change minds about what a gun owner is. We’re not rednecks. We are culturally relevant bad asses who pet kittens and kiss babies, yet are prepared to defend ourselves and possibly those around us from harm. Please represent us well Texas, and as a former Pennsylvania open carry resident, good luck with future legislative success.


A Look at Quality CCW Shirts

Sure you can hide your widow maker  with normal clothes the same as you can with clothes meant to hide guns, but normally those non gun clothes lack a few other nice little refinements. Until recently anything  made to be worn with guns was usually something  meant to be be more of what I call uniform casual. The police polo shirt with hooks for radio wires  or other shirts meant to be more “tactical”, whatever that means these days.

I do not consider my self fashionable, but I do kinda of like my clothes to be presentable for dinner or a date. Most of the clothes I used in the past to hide my  sidearm looked pretty sloppy and had my girlfriend complaining about my looks. She is always dressed in current fashion and when we went out , I did not think it was asking to much for me to look like something she would not be ashamed to be seen with, at least clothing wise. So Last year she bought me a woolrich elite CCW shirt to wear. Not only did it hide my gun well, it looked great!. It was comfortable, it was light, it did not stain easy and it let me stay cool in the summer. After this, I became more interested in shirts that hide guns and all the other stuff that usually goes along with them.

Not too long ago, Woolrich came out with some more shirts in the line. They look even better then the older solid color shirts from a few years ago, but are nice enough to wear anywhere for most events you may find yourself dragged to willingly or out of duty.

The 1st of these is the Woolrich Elite series tactical shirt

As you can see in the picture the shirt looks good, wears good, and hides a full size 1911 and spare mag easily. Both right and left sides have the hidden split side with velcro closure. This lets you grab the shirt and rip it open to get to your handgun or reload easier. when not in use, they split side is hidden.

The bottom button of the shirt is also false. Instead it has a small magnet on each side that stays put until you need to  move it, then it comes away easily to let you move the shit to get to whatever you need. Also the back of the shirt has a vented back for better cooling, as I will show in a later pic of another shirt.  The shirt hides inside and outside the belt holster well adn with very little printing. Here is a side view of the shirt  doing its thing.

The next shirt is another Woolrich CCW shirt but not the Elite series. It is however just as nice. It has all the same features as the above shirt but has some extras.

The shirt has the same velcro split side as the elite series  on both left and right sides and the vented back. But, it also has a middle section of false buttons. The middle section is not velcro however. Instead of having velcro that would wear out or be too noisy in a bad situation, it has magnets behind the false buttons that allows you to slip your hand into the shirt to get to a gun in a shoulder holster. I thought this was a great solution for the shoulder holster. I rarely use a shoulder rig because of not having a easy way to get to it with normal shirts.

As can be seen, the shirt easily pulls away right where you need it to.

And here is a picture trying to show the left side vents. Both woolrich shirts have these vents on the right and left side along with a breast pocket that is closed with velcro.

These shirts come in a few different colors and patterns. They are light and very very comfortable. They fit me just as they are supposed to. A size M is a size M and the material they are made from is soft and is hard to get to wrinkle. To add to that I have to say they look really good, everyone that has seen them has commented on how nice they looked and had no idea of there purpose. Since the remarks came from some women I consider that pretty good proof that the shirt does its job of deception.

The next shirt is not a Woolrich  but the ever popular 5.11. I like some 5.11 stuff and have a couple of pair of their pants but this is the first shirt that I have tried from the company. Before I got the woolrich shirts I liked it a lot. I still like it, but now I see its not all it could be. But it is still a very nice shirt that does its job well. I think it would do better for a police officer or some one that needed to carry a lot more gear. or just a guy that likes to carry a lot more gear.

The shirt works great for hiding your handgun.

But I find the side velcro splits do not come up far enough to always clear the gun like they are meant to.

Pretty good, but not as much as I would like.

Like the woolrich, it allows you to get to a shoulder holster but with a different solution. It uses metal snap buttons under false conventional looking buttons.

Once inside the shirt, there are two huge inside pockets that are closed by velcro. They are big enough to hold anything you can think of. I was able to fit an entire Gov model 1911 in the left side. The same pocket is on left and right of the shirt.

That is a lot of room. I was able to get  30 round AR15 mags in the pockets as well as flashlights, wallets, spare pistol mags and a lot of other things useful and not useful.

Here is a picture of the hidden buttons along with the outer false buttons. The inside rear of the shirt shows the material meant to make the shirt cooler and to get some air inside. It does a poor job at this but I consider the shirt more for cooler use. The material is very soft and wrinkle free, but it is heavier then the woolrich. Though it might be hotter and heavier, it is not by much and it may make it last longer and be tougher, but I do not think it would be enough to call it an advantage over the woolrich.

All of the shirts will do exactly what they are intended to do. I have to say I have a love of the woolrich though. They have more styles and they area lot cooler in the summer. All of the shirt shown are pricey, but what product in our lifestyle is not pricey these days? Especially if you want quality, and I have always lived by the “you get what you pay for”  philosophy. All of the shirts will do a good job and I highly suggest giving them some serious thought.Sure I can hide a 1911 , two reloads and a Ar15 mag under a wife beater Tshirt, but why not look good and have something the wife/girlfriend/ boyfriend??  would be proud to be seen with you if you are wearing it.