Most Practical Concealed Carry
would hold a glock double stack magazine? They have lots of different tools these days!
The pouch I use is the Leatherman W.A.V.E pouch. I picked up a second pouch at a local outdoor store for ~$8. It will hold either the G19/23 or the G26/27 magazines, but the sub-compact will definitely have about a half-inch of extra space at the bottom. Never had a problem with it though.
It looks a little out of place if you're carring a real multi-tool with it, but I never had anyone ask anything of it, or even cast a wayward glance. For reference, I kept the real tool up front and the magazine rearward.
The Mike Pannone Covert Carry class was probably the best class I have ever taken. ECQC and LFI-1/MAG-40 are also on my top list, but for different reasons.
Alias Training has a bunch of classes taught by guys who used to be in SOF-D. Mike does not explicitly say so, but he was until he lost an eye in a breaching explosion. Another thing that is not widely known is that Mike worked for Viking Tactics and most of their training program is Mike's stuff. Mike keeps a very low profile since most of his customers are off the radar. I think he is one of the best kept training secrets.
We were worried that the Covert Carry class would be some entry-level "draw from concealment" class, but it was much more than that. The class material is drawn from training the Mike gave to the Air Marshall program and to Navy SEAL's.
Mike did a lot of work with carbine development for the military. He also runs a carbine class that I have yet to take.
If you are looking for a class on the low profile use of the pistol, I highly recommend Mike Pannone.
Mike is a quiet low key guy. The thing that impressed us most was that he could clearly explain why he chose the technique he was showing us and why he considered it better than competing techniques.
Several of the guys in my ECQC class have trained with DeFoor and speak highly of him. I have not taken any classes with him. I think he is more of the "gung ho" carbine style training as is Jason Falla (Redback One). With your military background you would probably be ok, but I took a class with Jason and had trouble keeping up. I won the award for "best performance in my age category" 🙂
I took "Fighting Pistol" with Northern Red (now called Invictus Group). This was also a very good class.I would recommend them if you cannot get with Pannone, but Pannone would be my first choice.
Joe,Its interesting to hear you say that – I really like Mike’s approach from what I’ve seen and personally, I think a lot of the carbine camps (even by SMU/CAG/DEVGRU instructors) are fantasy camps. They work the skill at arms angle but the tactical aspects are (IMHO) the worthier part.
This goes a bit into philosophy of training, but I believe if you can only dedicate time to one firearm, it should be a handgun… My reasoning is:
1. You can keep it with you in situations where longarms are not allowed.
2. The tactics used with pistols can nearly always be applied to rifles. Inverse is not true.
3. If you have strong fundamentals, you’ll immediately know with a pistol. Rifles are more forgiving, and don’t always reveal your “rough” spots.
I think warfare has an impact on culture we don’t even fully realize. During gulf I, shaved heads became popular. Now, its beards and violent video games. There are impressions being made on people here who didn’t fight but want something of the experience, whether it is to emulate it or use it for ideation. Carbine courses are, in a large part, related to this.
Not to say they aren’t good – they are, but training should be 45% tactics, 45% mindset (FoF) and 10% marksmanship. Mainly because marksmanship can be cultivated easily by the individual once you have the foundation.
I know you know all this. Just feel like philosophizin’.
I agree entirely with your percentage breakdown. I have lately come to say that marksmanship is necessary but not sufficient. A couple of the instructors have also said that a real-life pistol gunfight is only about 10% marksmanship due to the close ranges that they occur at. At this year's class, Chuck Taylor emphasized that pistol gunfights are close, short and brutal. He has survived 14 pistol gunfights, so I guess he would know.
Mike Pannone said that surviving a gunfight is 90% weapons dexterity. Being able to clear your cover garment and bring your pistol into the fight before the other guy is critical.
I went to an "Open Forum" training day, basically the company rented the range and students could run whatever drills they wanted to, mainly providing a place that allows drawing from the holster and moving around instead of shooting from stalls. There were a couple of newer people who were doing things that are not considered to be safe practices. They were not inherently unsafe. They just never had been told what the best practices were and once we told them they were fine for the rest of the day. That prompts me to mention a few simple things in case some of the newer members here have never been told.
When training with a holster, the holster is a great place to store your gun when not using it. Take the gun out when you are actually shooting, but at all other times keep it back in your holster.
If you go to a class where you are shooting a lot, make sure you have a holster that does not collapse when you take the gun out (e.g. some leather in the waistband holsters) and that you can holster the gun with only one hand.
Always put the gun back in the holster before trying to adjust gear or do other things like pick up magazines.
Wait until the line has been declared safe and secure before bending over to pick up your magazine. This reduces the likelihood of getting shot in the head accidentally. You probably can fix accidentally shot in the leg, but shot in the head is much worse.
If you need to put in a fresh magazine, you can do this with the gun in your holster. Just push the mag release and pull the old mag out and pop the new mag in. This allows you to refresh you ammo without waving the gun around. Make sure to seat it properly. I have had several times where it fell out after I did this because I did not give it a strong tap putting it in.
When you are about to shoot and they give you a moment to make sure your gun is ready, do a "press check" (pulling the slide back slightly to make sure a round is chambered) and give the magazine a good tap to make sure it is seated properly.
Some people have trouble racking their slide and tend to hold the pistol sideways while racking. If you feel the need to hold it that way to get leverage, you should turn your body 90 degrees so that while holding the pistol sideways the muzzle still points down range. Another thing that helps with racking is to push with your firing hand while you are pulling the slide back with your non-firing hand. This makes it easier to rack the slide.
When you need to pick up a rifle magazine, I have found that the best way to do it is to bring your rifle to the "high port" position, being careful not to muzzle sweep anyone. High port is the 45 degree angle hold in front of your chest. You can then drop to one knee, holding the rifle in your non-shooting hand with the muzzle pointed safely up (and the safety one as it should be when not shooting) and pick up the magazine with your shooting hand.
When trainging in a group environment or moving tactically in a group you should always keep the safety of your rifle on safe except when shooting. I guess the same goes for pistols like 1911 with a manual safety. You need to practice moving the selector to "fire" as you raise the rifle to your shoulder and moving it back to "safe" as you lower the rifle. In my opinion, this is the hardest and most important thing to burn into your subconcious movements. You need to be constantly aware of it.
I don't mean to preach, but I get the feeling that these simple sounding safety tips are the sort of thing that you do not know if someone doesn't tell you about them, but then they seem obvious afterwards.
Of course, do not forget the standard NRA rules:
All guns are loaded no matter what you think, so treat them as such.
Keep your finger off the trigger until you are on target and intending to fire.
Know your target and what is behind it.
Keep your gun pointed in a safe direction. This is usually stated as "down range", but you need to be aware of the situation as there might be people changing targets etc. To me a safe direction is one that if the gun goes off it will not hit someone or something that it should not.
Happy shooting and Stay Safe.
I am also a fan of pocket carry, and have found that a Ruger Speed Six with the 2 3/4" barrel in a De Santis Nemesis holster in the front pocket of Duluth Trading Company's Firehose pants is an excellent setup, at least for me. Slides right out, very discreet, and very comfortable. ( I've actually forgotten it was there on occasion.) I prefer a revolver for simplicity, faster deployment, and reliability, while realizing that there is a tradeoff having only 6 shots vs 12 or 14 or whatever with a semi-auto. I do carry extra rubber strippers though, and they are reasonably quick to reload following some practice. I feel the heavier frame of this revolver is actually a feature, as it goes a ways in mitigating recoil. 38spl+p in this gun is no big deal. Don't know yet about .357, still researching on best rounds for reduced flash…
Whatever you enjoy and can handle easily and accurately will be best for you. You will practice more if it's enjoyable and fun. I advise you to find a range or a friend that will allow you to try out whatever guns you are considering before you buy. Same with holsters, if at all possible. I thought I wanted a Sig semi auto, but for some unknown reason this fine weapon doesn't fit my hand- go figure. I actually ended up with an old school revolver. Takes all kinds/ diff'rent strokes, etc… Let us know how your process goes, could be helpful to others.
If you can find one, consider the Ruger Speed/Service/Security Sixes. Built like tanks to handle full house ammo, can literally be taken down with a dime, very simple design. The heavier, mid size frame greatly lessens felt recoil compared to most of the newer snubbies. 6 shots vs. 5. The double action trigger is pretty stout on mine, but has a very crisp break, and single action is smooth as silk. Very accurate, especially considering the 2 3/4" barrel's short sight radius. I intend to gently smooth out the trigger pretty soon, as by all accounts these guns respond very well to consciously applied love in this area- basically slightly lighter springs, shims, and lightly deburring the hammer and other action bits (3000 grit sandpaper and/or paste metal polish). Several nice show & tells on YouTube. I read about one of these that has been a rental range gun since Moses was a pup, that supposedly has about a million rounds through it, and still going strong. A million may be a stretch, but you get the idea. There are more than a few folks who say that you can't hardly wear one of these guys out in a lifetime of heavy use. Those who I've spoken with or read on the forums that have sold or otherwise no longer have one of these have all said they wish they had kept them. Mine will definitely stay in our family.
I like Duluth Trading Company's Fire Hose work pants. Very well made, rugged, and the front pocket easily and comfortably hides a Ruger Speed Six snubby in a DeSantis Nemesis pocket holster. About the same size as a K frame Smith.