Thursday, September 21, 2017

Introducing the Newest GunDude

GunDiva: I want to introduce you to our newest GunDude, Robbie. We go way back to when we were co-workers at a gun shop. Robbie is a young 'un, but has decades of gun experience and has the best stories. I've been after him to write about his bear hunting adventures (which is not what today's post is about, but I'll get a bear story out of him eventually).
 
As I sit here looking at my son, I start to think about taking him to the shooting range; and how my dad got me started. The first time I remember dad taking me to the range, he sat down with me and told me all about how the gun worked and the damage it could cause if it was misused. He went over the safety rules again and again until I could say every rule back to him word for word.  After the talking part was done he showed me the gun we were going to shoot. It was a nylon 66 .22 LR. As I sat down at the bench behind the gun, I remember feeling scared that I would somehow screw something up, but my dad just sat on the other side of the bench and told me he didn't expect me to punch a one hole group. He only expected me to hit the ground, but that was ok, only as long as I followed all the rules and techniques of squeezing the trigger and the breath control.

Finally the time came to load the gun and see what I could do. Wouldn't you know, I was a natural... I hit the ground every time! The metal popper was safe for the time being. I looked over at my dad expecting to see disappointment on his face, but to my surprise I saw a look of satisfaction. He said that I was doing everything right.

Then the other boot dropped and told me I was looking through the sights wrong. He told me that I needed to line up the sights a certain way and to focus on the front sight. We loaded up the gun again, and tried one more time. I sat behind the rifle and concentrated on the front sight and squeezed the trigger, and the gun fired and I heard a TWANG! The popper spun around with the force of a well placed shot. I looked over at my dad and saw something on his face that I rarely saw... He was smiling. He then told me "Good job" and to keep going. Of course I missed a few more shots but I hit a few more too. We stayed there a few more hours with him giving me targets to hit and me trying to hit them. Then he said that it was time to go.

He saw the look of disappointment on my face and told me he would take me out again next week. Hearing that made me think I was floating on cloud 9.

After a few more days at the range, my dad said I was ready for something new for the next time we went to the range. The next trip to the range my dad brought a different gun case. When I asked what it was he told me I would find out soon enough.  It was a long trip that day, with all the anticipation of a new gun to shoot. Finally we got to the range. I was so ready to see the new gun I was going to shoot! Dad had a different idea though. We went and shot the .22 for a while. I was getting done with a good string of shots when my dad put something down next to me. I looked over and saw something I had never seen before. Seeing the confused look on my face he explained what it was.

It was a Colt AR 15. He explained everything about it, from how to load it to how to take it apart. We disassembled it and reassembled it many times. He said if I was going to shoot a bigger gun I was going to learn how to clean it and know how it worked. I think I was the only five year old that could take an AR 15 apart. Thinking back on it I think I was the only five year old that had actually seen one. Of course, not too many kids that I knew had ever gone shooting.

After all the talking was done he showed me one more time how to load the magazine and then handed it to me. I loaded only ten rounds in the mag then seated in into the receiver, pulled the loading charge handle back then let it fly home loading the gun and making it "hot". Looking at my dad somewhat nervous about this bigger gun he told me not to worry about the recoil, that it only kicked a little more than a .22. I relaxed a little at his words. Then feeling a little more confident with those words I flipped the safety off got a good sight picture and squeezed the trigger.

BANG!

I was a little startled by the much louder report, it was a so much louder than the little .22. Of course I missed the steel popper I had been aiming at. He chuckled and said that it was ok and to concentrate on the sight picture. Realizing that the "bark was worse than the bite" I settled back behind the rifle again and slowly squeezed the trigger again.

BANG!

The shot missed again, but this time was a little bit closer than the last. I finally hit the target 50 yards away on the ninth shot! My dad clapped me on the back and told me that I was starting to figure it out. Of course I missed the tenth round; but after hitting it on the previous shot I was excited to load up another mag and try it again. I found out quickly that it took a lot more time to load the mag than to shoot it. I loaded the mag so many times that my fingers started to get tired and hurt; my dad had to start loading them for me. This was so cool! Finally after about three hours and 500 rounds my dad said it was time to pack up and head home. I hadn't realized how much I had shot until I had to pick up all that brass. As I was picking up all the brass dad told me that I was hitting the target 7 out of 10 shots, and that was pretty impressive for a five year old.

Now that my son is almost four, I can't wait to start talking to him about how my dad took me out and started me out shooting. It makes me a little giddy to think that I will follow in my dad's footsteps and do the same thing he did with me with my son.

--Robbie

Monday, July 31, 2017

Gun Industry, Gun Culture, Gun Politics: A Call for Reformation

For over three decades I have studied a wide variety of topics about guns.  I did this simply because I like guns.  I like everything about them.  Over the years I have seen many changes.  Some of them good, some not so good. 

What I have noticed, especially in the past 10-15 years, is the industry as a whole is stagnating.  The industry produces the same products with little improvement or change and many new products are just crap and do not serve the customer well.  The culture is not changing fast enough to keep up with the changing demographics.  Nor is it adapting to the needs of todays shooters.  Especially those new to guns and gun culture.  Finally the politics are old and stale and highly ineffective. 
It is time for a reformation of the gun community to take us forward into the 21st century.  I fear if we do not adapt and change for the better there will not be a gun culture within 2 generations (approx. 50 years). 

Below I will outline some of the problems I am seeing and what may be done to improve the gun community.



Gun Industry:
First I want to start with the gun industry.  I will use more of list form instead of writing a Tolstoy novel on each line item.  Nor will this be a complete list.  Just some of more obvious issues.

1.    First item is an overall drop in quality.  I’ve noticed this drop across all manufacturers.
a.    I would rather see a price increase than a drop in quality.
b.    The fit and finish is not a nice as it was 10-20 years ago. 
                                               i.     Compare a new Smith revolver to an old one.  Especially a pre-lock revolver.  Night and day difference.  Yet, they cost the same.   
2.    Manufacturers building the same designs they have been for many decades without change or improvement. 
a.    An example would be rifle stocks.  Unless you go to the aftermarket, most rifles stocks are the same design from 100 years ago.  A time when iron sights ruled the day. Not very useful with optics which sit higher up.  Time for manufacturers to improve their designs. 
b.    Another example is Revolver stocks.  These haven’t changed in decades.  Why not design something that actually fits the human hand?  Revolvers are great but the ergonomics suck.  
c.     One final example is holsters.  Most holsters out there are crap.  I wish the manufacturers would update or go out of business, but they continue due to the ignorance of the consuming public.  A good example is Lethal Lace.  This is a shit product and should go away.
d.    A couple of good examples are the Ruger Precision rifle and the Magpul Hunter stock.  Both are adjustable for length of pull and for comb height to fit the individual user.  Not perfect, but for the price point very well done.
e.    Manufacturers need to update their designs to be better and more useful to the public.
3.    Educate the public on the use of your products.  Help consumers decide what they actual need.  Don’t just sell crap because you can.  Possible trim down the number of product options. 
a.    An example would be scopes.  Most of the public probably does not really understand what they actually need in a rifle scope.  What magnification is needed?  What reticule is best suited for the task? What features are appropriate and necessary?
b.    Educate the consumer on what is actually useful and what is just unnecessary fluff. 
4.    Better educated sales staff at guns stores.
a.    The businesses selling guns need to be better educated so they can give good advice to customers. 
                                               i.     I should never hear from a salesman that a rifle has the wrong magazines.  No, not the wrong magazine, proprietary magazines.  There is a difference.  Actual event I encountered.  I know better because I have the experience.  What about a new comer to the gun community?  What will they think when a salesman tells them a rifle has the wrong magazine?
                                             ii.     I understand profit margins with guns is slim, but it may be better to hire a few knowledgeable employees than to hire nothing but shop monkeys.  Also, I should not know more than a factory sales rep. Yep, ran into a Ruger sales rep. that could do nothing more than parrot the generic information that is found on the Ruger webpage.  Dear lord, hire, or train, competent sales staff.    

These are just a few examples of things I see wrong with the gun industry. There are more but I’m not trying to write a Tolstoy novel.

The industry needs to update for the 21st century.  Adapt to the changing demographics and help supply customers what they actually need.  Help educate the consumer on what is good and why.  Then also produce good products and update them as necessary.  The knowledge base of firearms has increased significantly over the past few decades, so use that knowledge and make better products. 



Gun Culture:
Now I want to move onto gun culture. 

1.    One thing that must change is the image of the “typical” gun owner.  Currently it stands as a middle aged white man.  This is an old stereotype who’s time has come to die. 
a.    Gun culture is for everyone (except Felons and the criminally insane)
b.    We must be open to the changing demographics and welcome newcomers.  
2.    Retailers and gun ranges need to be more open and help newcomers be more comfortable and welcomed.       
a.    Help newbies learn the ins and outs of guns and gun culture. 
b.    Stop talking down to women. They are capable.  Teach them correctly.
c.     Have a more open and friendly environment.  Your shop should feel comfortable to come inside.  This is especially important for those potential customers who may not feel comfortable around guns but want to learn.    
3.    Gun culture needs to change and be seen as a martial art.  Guns are not some magic talisman.  They don’t grant you power or authority or protect you from evil.  They are inanimate objects.  True they are deadly weapons and that puts them in the realm of martial arts.  We need to treat them as such and train as such.
4.    We need to change how we train.  We need to develop GunFu into a regular training regiment.   
a.    Most people take a basic class or are taught by their cousins, sisters, brother and they think they know how to use a gun.  Or worse, they just kinda’ “figure it out” on their own.  (even worse)
b.    Nope.  Just like any other martial art, use of a gun is a perishable skill and takes dedicated time and practice to get good and to stay proficient. 
c.     Taking one weekend class and going to the range twice a year is not good enough.  In most other martial arts, students are going weekly.  One to five times a week and it takes years to truly be proficient.  We need to develop the same mentality and training regiment with guns. 
d.    Does this mean dry fire, airsoft, more shooting ranges, shooting simulators, videos, books, all of the above?  I don’t know the answer, but we need to update for the 21st century.  Make it easier to find good information, especially for newbies.  Lets use the power of the internet to spread more and better training. 
                                               i.     Yes, I know there are lots of internet resources.  Blog pages, YouTube videos, books, etc.  How easy is it for newbies to find good information versus bad opinion?  This is what I’m talking about.  Make the information more organized and easier to find. 
1.    This goes along with gun shops being a little more friendly and accommodating. 
5.    We need to stand together as a community and stop the petty squabbles between gun groups.  The collectors need to support the hunters who need to support the target shooters who need to support the tactical shooters and on and on.  We must stand united together as a community. 

Here are a few items I think can be improved in gun culture. 


Gun Politics:
Finally, the hot potato.  The politics of guns! 

1.    First off, we need to stand together as a gun community.  We must stop the circular firing squads we sometimes form.  We must stop eating our own. 
2.    We must have a unified platform to present to the world. 
a.    Notice no matter which anti-gun group you talk to or which media outlet is presenting the news, they always have identical talking points and identical language?  They all use “background checks”, “gun show loophole”, “gun safety”, etc. 
b.    We need the same unified platform for the pro-gun side.  Unified talking points, unified data, etc.  We must stand together.  The data and root philosophy is on our side.  We must convey the message better. 
3.    We need an emotional component to the pro-gun argument.
a.    The anti-gun groups use mostly emotional components, sprinkled with distorted facts, to great effect.  Simple logic and facts will not accomplish the task.  It is time to add to the debate.  Guns are used daily in self-defense and managed hunting.  Time to give those positives a face and a voice. 
4.    It is time to go on the offensive in the debate.  We have been defensive for far too long.  Valuable time and resources are wasted being defensive.  The anti-gunners make an accusation, and we defend.  The pro-gun story appears weak.  Time to take the fight to the anti-gunners.
a.    For example:  The anti’s claim children are killed daily due to guns.  A very emotional argument used to great effect.
                                               i.     We hit back by accusing the anti’s of being anti-child.  That they hate children.  Otherwise, why would anti-gunners block the Eddie Eagle program from being taught in every school.  A real safety program for children. 
                                             ii.     Yes, it is time to get mean.  Otherwise the anti-gunners will continue to lay down blocks in our path.  Lay down enough blocks and you have a wall.  A wall that is not easily knocked down.
1.    What are these blocks you ask?  New York Safe Act.  Magazine capacity restrictions.  Universal background checks.  Ammunition taxes (Seattle, WA.)  Little by little they lay down blocks.  In a few years they have a wall. 
5.    We need a new universal platform to be the face and spokesman for gun owners.  Unfortunately, the NRA has been marginalized by the anti-gunners.  I don’t think the NRA is truly effective anymore.  They have been demonized so much their name is tainted. 
a.    What this new platform is, I don’t know.  Is it a new version of the NRA?  Is it a federation of existing pro-gun groups?  I don’t know.  But it must be better and more effective and better represents all gun owners.  Including the new, changing demographics.
b.    Should we include the NRA?  Yes, they have many valuable resources that will be needed.  And they are still part of the gun community. No need to form a circular firing squad. 


This outlines some changes that need to be improved in the political arena.  


Conclusion:

Here are some of my ideas for improving the gun industry, culture and politics. 
I don’t have all the answers.  But I do know that we must change.  We must improve.  We must stand together, united to make it better.  To be better!  To take gun ownership into the 21st century.  Otherwise, guns and gun ownership may be a distant memory relegated to history. 




-Mez

July 2017

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Flying Solo

A couple of weeks ago, I was talking to a few other instructors and was surprised to find that they had never been to the range alone.

What
The
Hell?

I'm all about empowering women to learn to shoot, but shouldn't we as female instructors be setting examples outside of the classroom too? How can we in good conscious lecture women to take control of their own protection if we're too chicken to go to the range by ourselves? How is it that female instructors can be big and tough in front of a classroom, but not be comfortable taking their own happy asses to the range without an escort?

I've been going to the range by myself for years. The first match I attended was one where I knew nobody. I packed my range bag and marched myself to the range, I listened to the orientation, I asked questions, and I shot the match. I was terrible, but I did it. And I made friends along the way who have become my tribe.

It just never occurred to me that other women didn't do it. I was truly flabbergasted that it seemed to be the norm to go to the range with someone else; that *I* was the odd one out for having flown solo. If this introvert can do it, anyone can.

Ladies, we have to do more than just preach empowerment and taking control - we have to model it.

I challenge you (even if you're not an instructor) to go to the range by yourself.

You do not need an escort, male or female.

Just go.

It will be worth it, I promise.

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Changing it up

I've been focusing on the Dot Torture. I see it in my sleep sometimes, I swear!

I've now cleared it right-handed at 3 yards with three of my pistols: GSG 1911-22; Glock 42 (.380); and my Para-Ordnance 1911 (.45).




I even cleared it last week left-handed at 3 yards with my GSG 1911-22. Still need to shoot it clean with my G42 and Para.


I do love the Dot Torture and it has improved my shooting by leaps and bounds, but I feel like I was eating, sleeping, and breathing Dot Torture, so when a new drill showed up on my Facebook feed I decided to give it a try. I've seen it before, but had forgotten to write it down or save it. This time I remembered. It's the Tactical Professor's "Baseline Evaluation" that I stole from Active Response Training (that he re-blogged from Tactical Professor).

This was a fun, quick drill, five sequences of ten shots. Though untimed, it does require one to focus on the fundamentals. One of my failures is that if I start from a low-ready, I tend to overshoot my target on the first round (for example, my first round ends up as a head shot instead of a body shot). This is a great drill for remembering to slow down and find that front sight. There is also one mag change per sequence, and I found that I'm fairly accurate with my first round after a mag change (thanks to dots 9 and 10 on the Dot Torture).

The instructions say to mark your target after each sequence with a pen or with masking tape. I forgot about those instructions when I shot the first couple of tehm. When I got out to 7 yards and threw my first couple of rounds out of the 10-ring, I thought I could remember which rounds were which, but by the time I got to 10 yards, I had to start marking.

I'm waiting on my IDPA targets to arrive, so I used the silhouette targets that the range had. I scored my target in two ways for each distance: the first score was total rounds in the 10-ring; my second score was total rounds in the 8-ring. I'm sure that once I get the IDPA targets my scores will change somewhat (worse, I think, because I found the 8-ring really generous).

Even with the generous 8-ring, I threw the last two rounds of my last string at 15 yds.
My scores with the Para, shooting right-handed were:
  • 3 yd 10/10 in 10-ring
  • 5 yd 10/10 in 10-ring
  • 7 yd 6/10 in 10-ring;10/10 in 8-ring
  • 10 yd 8/10 in 10-ring; 10/10 in 8-ring
  • 15 yd 3/10 in 10-ring; 8/10 in 8-ring
  • Total 37/50 in 10-ring; 48/50 in 8-ring.
I switched to left-handed with my GSG and remembered to mark the targets after each sequence with masking tape. It makes for an ugly target, but one that is much easier to score.

One day, I'll stop pushing to the right with this gun.

My scores with the GSG, shooting left-handed were:
  • 3 yd 10/10 in 10-ring
  • 5 yd 10/10 in 10-ring
  • 7 yd 6/10 in 10-ring;10/10 in 8-ring
  • 10 yd 3/10 in 10-ring; 10/10 in 8-ring
  • 15 yd 0/10 in 10-ring; 8/10 in 8-ring
  • Total 29/50 in 10-ring; 50/50 in 8-ring.
I still had time and 20 rounds left, so I brought the target in to 3 yards and shot 10 rounds left-handed, and 10 rounds right-handed. My left-handed group was much tighter, but just to the right of center, than my right-handed rounds.

I did have an experience at the range for the first time that I'm not thrilled with - there was a new(er) shooter in the lane next to me who had a hot piece of brass go down her shirt. I get it, it's hot. However, you don't get to jump around in your lane waving your gun around. She got an ugly, pissed-off instructor look from me, and a terse "watch your muzzle!". She was quite apologetic and I hope she learned a lesson about muzzle discipline. I never want to discourage a new shooter, but I also don't want anyone getting hurt.

Please, if you are teaching someone to shoot, or even just taking someone shooting, tell them in advance what to do if they get brass down their shirt. If you shoot often enough, it's going to happen and it shouldn't have tragic consequences. If the new shooter knows what to do in advance, then they will have a plan in place.

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

What the Dot Torture has Taught Me

People are probably sick of me going on and on about the Dot Torture. It dawned on me, after talking to my mom, that while I've talked about the Dot Torture for years, I've not explained what it is recently or why I'm so in love/hate with it. This is a drill, shot at close range, that tests a shooter's fundamentals: sight picture, trigger control, transitioning between targets, one-handed, and weak-handed shooting. The instructions are available online (see link above), or you can find a target pre-printed with the instructions.

I shot it first back in 2012, but haven't been shooting it regularly until this year. It has always been a humbling experience, and often quite frustrating.

First time ever shooting Dot Torture 10/26/12 (GSG 1911-22)

10/26/12 (Para LTC 1911 .45 ACP)

When I came up with my shooting goals for the year, shooting more frequently was one of the goals. I plan on shooting at least 200 rounds a month, and it's easy to do if you know what you're going to be doing each time you go to the range. I knew if I shot the Dot Torture twice with my right hand and twice with my left each month I'd hit my goal easily.

The Dot Torture has frustrated me for a long time. I've never been a precise shooter - I'm what some would call "combat accurate", but I very rarely have been able to shoot nice tight groups on purpose. My groups fall in the 1.5 - 2" range, not bad, but hardly worth bragging about.

While I was expecting to improve my Dot Torture scores, I was not expecting to see the drastic improvement in my group sizes.

1/31/17 GSG 1911-22

2/7/17 G42

2/10/17 G42

2/14/17 G42
I'm still not shooting one-hole groups, but they are much better and I know the moment the trigger breaks whether or not I've thrown a shot. The shrinking group sizes has helped build my confidence, which has been sorely lacking. I know it's weird to say my confidence is improving when I've only shot the drill clean once, but it has. I'm beginning to feel like the shooter I used to be, and that feels really good.

Further, I've seen vast improvements in my left-handed shooting as well. I've always been fairly proficient with my left-handed shooting because I work at it, whereas most people don't. I make a point to shoot as close to 50% of the time with my left hand. I dare say that my current left-handed shooting ability is far better than my first right-handed go at the drill. (I thought I had more pictures of my left-handed targets, but I must not have uploaded them.)

2/7/17 G42, left-handed
With my confidence renewed, I'm looking forward to shooting my first match of the year.

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Happy Dance!

One of my shooting goals for this year was to shoot 200 rounds per month and I was running out of time to meet my goal. Mez and I went to the range on Sunday, where I'd hoped to finish out my 200. I took my GSG 1911-22. I have a fair bit of .22LR right now, and can afford to shoot that up, so for the next bit that's what I'll be practicing with.

I've some *this close* to shooting the Dot Torture clean for well over a year. My last attempt was with the G42 and G43 last month. Close, but no cigar. For our Sunday Gunday, I planned on shooting the drill with both my right and left hands. I might have been a bit cocky, knowing that shooting a full-sized 1911 chambered in .22 should have been a breeze compared to shooting the drill with pocket pistols. The last time I shot the Dot Torture with the GSG was in October of 2012. It's been a while and I didn't realize until I reviewed the post just how badly I'd sucked that go 'round.

Sunday's trip to the range wasn't as great as I had hoped, but it was a damn sight better than the time I shot it in 2012!

Right handed 40/50

Left handed 39/50

I am a Weaver shooter. It's the way I was taught, and it's what I'm comfortable with. However, we teach isosceles in our pistol classes, so I thought I'd shoot the way I'd been teaching. Isosceles is not at all comfortable for me. It's not so much the fighting the muscle memory that's difficult, but the girls get squished and in the way; it's physically uncomfortable for me to shoot isosceles. However, discomfort or not, I was determined to shoot both drills (right- and left-handed) in this manner. I can't say I hate the stance if I don't give it a fair shake, right?

Sunday Gunday was still a pretty good day, despite the fact that I should have shot much better than I did. I got range time, got to hang with Mez, and slung 100 rounds down range. There are much worse days than that.

Even with Sunday's shooting trip, I was short of my goal by about 40 rounds. I didn't have to be into work until noon today, so I took my happy ass to the range for another round of Dot Torture with the GSG. This time was much better!

I reverted to my Weaver stance, the girls breathed a sigh of relief, and we got started. I threw my first round because I forgot that the sights are wonky. I stopped, put the gun down, gave myself a good reminder that I know that sights are off and re-started. Instead of getting a whole new target, I started over and continued with this one.

I was so thrilled with my first two groups I stopped the drill to take a picture. Usually when I start off strong, I get ahead of myself and that's when my shooting goes to crap. I wanted proof that I could shoot well before I went and blew it.

I was pretty happy with this start.
I warned myself not to get cocky and to take each shot one at a time. Take as much time as I needed and make the freaking shot.

Right handed 50/50

Left handed 46/50 (I scored it incorrectly initially)
The GSG is having some serious issues, but I worked through each and every one without getting frustrated and it showed. I had easily a 40% failure to fire rate. I took that opportunity to practice my trigger press without flinching and practice clearing the gun.

I had intended to leave the gun with the gunsmith, but since he wasn't in, I decided that I'm going to try to fix it myself. I think the issue is that the gun is dirty. I cleaned it really well the other day, but I know I haven't done a complete tear-down and cleaning (like to the frame tear-down) since I've owned it. If that doesn't fix the problem, then he'll have to go to the gunsmith.

By the end, my hands and arms were tired, but I was thrilled! I might have to do this shooting before work business more often!

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Let's Talk Holsters

It was right around this time last year that I posted a piece about sexy holsters. In it, I listed things that are important to look for in holsters.

The concealed carrier ranks are growing by leaps and bounds, which is mostly a good thing. However, I'm seeing a large increase in the number of carriers who suffer from the Dunning-Kruger effect. I'm not saying that to be mean, they just don't know what they don't know.

Most recently, I've seen this play into holster choice. Recently, someone asked for recommendations on guns and carry methods, so I gave an answer. When she said that she loves "the clip" (Technaclip) on her gun, I mentioned that it wasn't a good carry method because it didn't cover the trigger and could lead to a negligent discharge. She took that as I was saying she was negligent. I was not. However, her comment made me think that maybe a refresher on what constitutes a good holster was due for circulation again.

The other "holster" (and I use that term very, very loosely) that seems to be popping up again and again is the VersaCarry. Gah!

A good holster will:
  1. hold the gun securely in place (no flapping, or migrating)
  2. cover the trigger (without being able to inadvertently activate the trigger)
  3. allow the carrier fast and consistent access to their gun
  4. not require constant adjusting and re-adjusting 
I know how hard it is to find good holsters, I do! There is no one magic holster, no one-size-fits-all solution for your gun.

I know they are expensive, but shouldn't we put as much consideration into buying our holsters as we do our guns? I have three different holsters for my carry gun, just so I have options depending on what I'm wearing. I've put nearly $300 into holsters for my $500 gun, and I had to accumulate them slowly. I carefully considered the pros and cons for each holster, but the one thing I never compromised on was the safety of the holster. Each holster meets the four criteria listed above.

If you are holster shopping, or know someone who is, please make sure you scrutinize the holsters and make sure they are safe.

Things like the Technaclip and VersaCarry fail spectacularly when scrutinized for safety.