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If you are like me, you are always looking for a holster that feels just right. Something that is minimal yet works under every situation you throw at it. For an armed citizen, off duty officer or anyone who does not want to outsource their protection, carrying a firearm is a very real situation. A huge topic with carrying is the method and position of your firearm.
Finding your style of carry is only something that can be done via trial and error. The most common holsters are IWB (inside the waist band) and OWB (outside the waist band). IWB holsters ride between your body and your pants while OWB are on your belt and offer more comfort but are less concealable. Shoulder holsters are a little over the top to some, but in specific situations it’s better to be armed than not. The external forms of carry are not my preferred method due to the risk of not having complete control of the firearm, but as I said before, it is better to be armed than a victim.
For me, the best method is appendix carry, which is just before the 3 o’clock position. This method is a little unorthodox in the way that it brings your firearm “danger close”. Yes, the muzzle of the firearm is pointed at some important equipment regardless male or female, but to me, the pros out weigh the cons. And through trying various modes of carry, appendix was the easiest to manage.
First off, I am a smaller dude only weighing 145lbs (65.7 kg) and I stand 5′ 9″ (175.5 cm) tall. Thus I have very limited ways of concealing and I have tried a few. For a full size or mid size handgun, this method works great. It allows plenty of comfort when sitting down, but as many of you know the level of comfort is dependent to how it works specifically for you. You need to learn (as well as any other carry methods) how to sit down and angle your body as to not print or jab yourself with the firearm.
One of the biggest pros is the ease of the draw. Through various classes and scenarios, I have found that the appendix mode it is the quickest and most controlled for me. My biggest concern was drawing from concealment in a vehicle, which most forms of carry make it very hard to do so. With the appendix carry, drawing and re-holstering is manageable with one hand. Granted, with proper training this is easily achievable. As it is with any holster, you need to train a lot with it in order to become proficient in using it.
The holster I have here is the Armordillo Concealment X-Fer holster. It is in my opinion one of the best concealment options currently on the market. I do use a weapon mounted light which is also the sole reason for this holster. It is different than other holsters due to the fact it relies on the weapon light for retention. Unlike conventional holsters that capture the whole firearm and need to be custom made for each handgun, the X-Fer can be exchanged between any type of handgun that share the same weapon light.
This ease of use and ability to be attached to any of my handguns was a huge selling point for me. The complete simplicity behind this product is perfect and it works flawlessly. For a holster that only costs around 50 USD and that ships to you within the week is fantastic. They currently have X-Fer holster models for the Surefire x300/200/X300 ultra and the Streamlight TLR-1. It is completely ambidextrous with a multitude of degrees that are adjusted with a simple Philips screwdriver. If you are in the market for a new and very well made holster, consider this one.
- Smith and Wesson M&P w/ Trijicon RMR, SureFire x300
- Load – (Hornady Critical Defense .40 S&W 165gr FTX)
- Springfield Armory Operator 1911 w/ SureFire x300
- Load – (Speer Gold Dot .45 ACP 230gr JHP)
- SIG P229r Ultra w/SureFire x300
- Load – (CorBon DPX 9mm +P 115gr JHP)
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Great review. I own this, and while I do not appendix carry, this is a very useful holster to have in your "box-o-holsters" as it allows the use of a weapon lightt with pretty much any gun you own. I personally didn't find it extremely comfortable or concealable, but it's not because of the holster but because of the added bulk of the light. It did something beneath my belt line to push it out a bit. Love handles didn't help much either.
Definitely recommend owning this though. Very compatible and useful.
Great review. I own this, and while I do not appendix carry, this is a very useful holster to have in your "box-o-holsters" as it allows the use of a weapon lightt with pretty much any gun you own. I personally didn't find it extremely comfortable or concealable, but it's not because of the holster but because of the added bulk of the light. It did something beneath my belt line to push it out a bit. Love handles didn't help much either. Definitely recommend owning this though. Very compatible and useful.
Looks very similar to the VG2 I have from Raven. Does this function the same in that you need to pull it out of the waistband in order to reholster?
How comfortable is it while sitting in an office environment? Maybe it's a personal body type issue, but I've found that appendix carry whith a lot of kydex to be uncomfortable for long periods sitting, either in the car or office.
I'm not trying to be troll-ey, but I don't like pointing guns anywhere near my femoral artery; not to mention my junk. Just saying in case someone hasn't thought of it.
Thanks for the article I am always looking for better carry options and have probably spent more on holsters than guns.
Sorry to be a nerd and point out a typo BUT... under firearms used you said a Sig P299r... I am pretty sure you meant P229r. Unless they came out with a new model I am unaware of. ;)
Just wanting entry to be ever awesomer!
Hi, Thanks for the article I am always looking for better carry options and have probably spent more on holsters than guns. Sorry to be a nerd and point out a typo BUT... under firearms used you said a Sig P299r... I am pretty sure you meant P229r. Unless they came out with a new model I am unaware of. ;) Just wanting entry to be ever awesomer! Mike
I've been looking for an AIWB holster forever for my Glock 19 / X400. I'm a little curious though: can you re-holster one handed with this? Or, for that matter, re-holster at all?
It works kind of the same, but the Raven does not allow a weapons light to be mounted on the firearm. Reholstering it is as easy as any other IWB holster. You can remove it from your belt to reholster it, but it is very easy to reholster with it still in your belt.
Sitting with it is not a problem to me at all. It does rub a bit against your thigh depending on your angle, but it is not a big issue. The holster adds little to the size of the firearm so it does not put a lot of kydex bulk down there. I can sit with mine on for a whole day of work or go on a hike with it all day as well and have little issue with it.
It's "not recommended" but I can and do, as well as many other people have, as demonstrated on YouTube. Just watch your gun, go slow, be careful, and you will be fine.