HGR 101 - Concealed Carry Evolution


Hello and welcome to Handgun Radio! I’m your host Ryan Michad from the wild woods of Central Maine, and this is your home for all the news, information and discussion in the handgunning world. This week, we have a roundtable discussion with Weerd Beard, Matt & TJ to discuss our respective “concealed carry evolution”, covering where we started with our concealed carry setup and where we have ended up!

Brought to you by the Firearms Radio Network

Week in Review:


Had a fantastic Independence Day Weekend! Got to shoot some more handguns and put more rounds through the Steyr C9A1! I’m up to 300 now!

Have a awesome holster coming from Shan over at Werkz Holsters! If you ever need a piece of kydex gear, please check them out. Shan is an awesome guy and is willing to try to accommodate your needs!

Weerd: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sazerac

Whiskey balls

Shot lots of bugs with my Bug-A-Salt 2.0 whilst cooking meats on the grill.


Matt: I’ve been shooting TJ’s cast off. So far I’ve put about 800 rds through it. Its been a great gun but thats no surprise. Decided to shoot this months IDPA match with it.  I also picked up a Winchester 1906 pump action .22 that was made in 1919. Needs some love but at $45 I can't complain. After about an hour it's working but still crusty.

Listener Email:

So in short,   "inherent Accuracy" in guns is how little the barrel moves (so people will say Berettas or Blowback guns are more accurate than short recoil action guns)   or how tight the gun locks up.

On a 1911 the gun locks up at the two locking lugs forward of the ejection port, and where the muzzle meets with the slide.

In a traditional 1911 at the barrel is the bushing, and this unit can be good or bad.   You hear about old warhorse 1911s that can't even group, and it's likely because of lose bushings and worn locking lugs.

So now some 1911s makers made a different step by adding a bull barrel that doesn't use a bushing.

The advantages of this is:

-Heavier barrel,  so better adsorption of  heat, and reduced felt recoil

-Better lockup because the cone-shaped bull barrel has more baring surface against the slide.

Disadvantage is:

-No bushing, and captive recoil system makes them harder to take apart.

-If you shoot a LOT, and wear out the lockup,  you need to replace and fit the barrel, rather than just the bushing.

I think the whole thing is hype, as all but some of the best shooters out there really have any concern about their guns "inherent" accuracy,   as most people can't shoot a pistol well enough to take advantage of these increases in accuracy,  and I personally easy take-down and ease or replacing the bushing, as thinking bushing guns are better.

Again, the point is moot, and enjoy your TRP and send pix!

Main Topic: Concealed Carry Evolution

At Matt’s suggestion, we thought it would be an interesting topic to go over how we evolved through our carry setups. We all started out trying things that we thought were cool, or maybe we got sucked into some creative marketing. Through the years, we have slowly evolved our concealed carry setups to where we currently feel comfortable with them. We may alter our setups for any number of reasons, but two of the main ones I think is level of perceived risk, and comfort reasons. Those aren’t all of them, but those are the main ones.

I thought we could take it one by one from each of us, starting off with what pistol we started carrying and the progression to what we carry today, then our choices of holster, reloads, clothing, flashlights etc.


-Started out carrying a Smith & Wesson Model 60, then switched to a Glock 27 with a plus two magazine extension. I liked the Glock 27 but the .40 S&W was just too snappy for that platform. However, it WAS very accurate. I started carrying the Model 60 on the belt and switched from rubber Pachmayr Presentation grips to the splinter grips from Smith & Wesson. They just fit my hands great. I finally switched to Altamont Boot Grips for my Model 60.

Started carrying on the belt then switched to IWB carry. Found IWB to be pretty uncomfortable for me, and switched to pocket carry, and that's where i’ve been ever since.

I am trying out a new holster from Werkz soon with some specifications for my needs. It will have a full length sweat shield/body shield, be convertible between IWB and OWB and should be awesome. Really looking forward to it.!

Current Setup(s):

Everyday: Kahr CM9 with DeSantis Nemesis Pocket Holster. Carry Bushnell flashlight with pocket clip. Extra magazine of 6 rounds. Carry ammo 124 grain Winchester PDX 9mm.

Looking forward to: IWB/OWB with Steyr C9A1, Werkz Holster and extra 17 round magazine.

Sometimes: Carry a NAA .22 LR Mini Revolver loaded with CCI Mini-Mags in addition to my Kahr.

Matt: I started about 10 years ago with an xd 45 4” and a small off the back holster and a high speed Fobus holster. Soon found out neither were optimal. I had only shot at square range at that time so no real test of my equipment. When I needed it the draw was slow and holster hit ground and when I first shot an idpa match I wasn’t very accurate under pressure. I got a lot better but still wasnt as good as I could be.Ended up switching to don hume leather IWB then went Crossbread IWB. Later got an M&P and found I shot it way better. In same day I shot 2 classifiers, got 184.31 with xd and 142.45 with the M&P. I started carrying the M&P9 full size in a Concealment Solutions owb. Worked great but wanted a smaller gun for our humid summers and got shield but tired of multiple mags and holsters. I sold it for a compact so I could use same holsters and mags. I also have an 642ct for pocket carry in sweats or basketball shorts.

Weerd Beard: Learned to shoot late in life.  Took my first shots in 1999.   Bought my first gun when I moved to Massachusetts in 2004,  but the first two towns I lived in took their May Issue status very seriously.    When we bought our house in 2008 I made sure I picked a town that would give me an unrestricted permit.

Because of this, I had bought two of my long-time carry guns and holsters and was carrying them only at home for several months.

S&W1911Sc in a Galco Miami Classic II

S&W642 no-lock in an Uncle Mike’s Pocket holster.  I later upgraded that to a Desantis Nemesis

Later I upgraded the pocket gun to my PM45 in a Desantis Nemisis.

Also I still liked to have a revolver around, so I got a LCR .357 in the same Nemisis.


I started carrying roughly 3 years ago, right after I turned 21. I had already planned to carry as soon as I could, so I did my research and the weekend after my 21st birthday, I bought a Glock 26. As for a holster, I was highly swayed by a relatively new YouTube gun guy known as Mr. Colion Noir, and purchased an all kydex IWB holster that he recommended. It didn’t work very well for me, because it was very uncomfortable, and held the pistol very high, so it tended to flop over and not conceal well. I soon decided to try a Concealment Solutions hybrid style holster, and it immediately changed my carry style, as I realized I could carry a larger gun and traded the 26 for a 19. From there, I saw a good deal on a trade for a Smith and Wesson 66, so I got rid of the 19. In hindsight, I should have just kept the 19, since I didn’t really carry the 66 much, and sold it to Matt to purchase a Smith and Wesson Shield. I am currently experimenting with appendix carry, and I’m really liking it so far.

My current carry setup is:

Smith and Wesson Shield

Concealment Solutions ASP 3.0

Concealment Solutions Python Gun belt

Surefire LX2 Lumamax flashlight

Spyderco Tenacious folding knife

Occasional Discreet/Light Carry:

Kahr CW380 in a Galco Ankle Lite or pocket holster

North American Arms Black Widow 22 Magnum in homemade leather pocket holster


Until next week, have fun and SAFE SHOOTING!