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Posted: 4/2/2006 11:14:26 PM EDT
I am thinking about a shoulder holster system for my carry purposes.
I am new to the CCW area so new in fact that I am still waiting on my permit to arrive.
I am sure this is a dupe topic but I did do a standard and archive search using
(Shoulder holster) but no topics were found. By the lack of topics I am thinking that this is not a good solution I was wondering why? What am I missing?
To me
The pros are
Gun and mags are under the arm and off the belt easy quick access.
No problem sitting standing getting jabbed with the butt of gun or mags.

The cons are
Must have a shirt or jacket on all the time not good for warm to hot climates.
Might be a bit constricting depending on model of gun and harness.



Link Posted: 4/3/2006 1:41:30 AM EDT
The biggest reason is that the shoulder holster can't do anything a WB holster can do, only your choice of clothing/concealment is drastically limited. Shoulder holsters usually require thumb breaks to retain the weapon and as such are probably even slower on the draw. You don't feel the clunk in your ass/tailbone, etc, but you feel the retention of the straps all the time and it clunks into your ribs when you sit all the same.

I bought a silly nylon one for $25 on a lark. It's nice for cold weather where I can carry two heavy hitters (one on the shoulder, one in the waist). That's about it. It's a novelty. You might get one, and like it , but sooner or later it will be left in the closet until some occasion arrises. your IWB WILL be your workhorse.
Link Posted: 4/3/2006 7:03:59 AM EDT
I'm one of those few who wears a shoulder holster more than 80% of the time I carry. I usually carry a P7, and with the lightest of summer shirts it dissapears. When I carry a full size 1911 I alternate between shoulder and belt. The 1911 is a little longer than the P7, and sometimes it prints out the back of the holster. I'm a big guy, (6'3" 250#), so any gun with a barrel of 4" or less isn't noticeable under my arm. YMMV.
Link Posted: 4/3/2006 10:50:15 AM EDT
They also cut off air circulation.
Link Posted: 4/3/2006 12:18:29 PM EDT
shoulders arnt bad--IF you get a good, comfortable holster

get a good, QUALITY holster (preferably leather as i have not seen a good nylon one)
case in point: i got a used galco leather for a P228/229, and a buddy of mine got a $25 Uncle Mike's nylon that sucks

the biggest problem (as already stated) was that it sucks to wear in the summer weather around here...
i also draw a little slower
Link Posted: 4/3/2006 1:45:23 PM EDT
I tried one, a cheap nylon one, sucked balls. So I thought it was because it was cheap. Purchased a 65$ leather one, even worse. I wouldn't waste my money because in all reality, like it said above, you WILL wind up IWB so why not just go straight for it.

**The only exception I have ever heard is for, umm, very, umm, large people find it better sometimes.

I only use mine when I am hunting early fall and wear it on the outside of everything should a coyote or something come running at me.

Brandon J.
Link Posted: 4/3/2006 2:08:51 PM EDT
Why not shouldered?

Because you'll eventually buy an IWB anyways and you can take the money you'll blow looking for the 'right' shoulder rig and buy a really nice IWB and still have cash for ammo or fixing the lining of your favorite jacket after a few months

When I had a CPL, I had an really nice horizontal DeSantis rig that I used for only a couple of times and a Bianchi IWB that I used ALL the time. Much less hassle on/off and can be done discretely unlike a shoulder rig.

If you get held up, your wallet and gun will be near the same location
Link Posted: 4/3/2006 5:21:10 PM EDT
I can't believe no one has said it yet. GET BOTH!

You will eventually want options depending on the season and wardrobe, so eventually, you can get both.
Link Posted: 4/4/2006 12:16:12 PM EDT
The big problem I have with shoulder holsters (especially the horizontal carry) is that when you draw you have the muzzle briefly pointed at your shoulder. Having an ND with the gun pointed behind you or at your shoulder = bad.

Just my .02
Link Posted: 4/4/2006 4:48:53 PM EDT
Drawing from the belt or from something like thunderware paints other parts of the body. There are always trade off's.


Originally Posted By nomadicwookie:
The big problem I have with shoulder holsters (especially the horizontal carry) is that when you draw you have the muzzle briefly pointed at your shoulder. Having an ND with the gun pointed behind you or at your shoulder = bad.

Just my .02

Link Posted: 4/4/2006 7:44:42 PM EDT
I have a vest and two light jackets that I have sewn my own holsters inside. The are comfortable, accessable and have no straps or belts to be concerned about. I made them with thumb breaks so they stay where I want them until I need them.
Link Posted: 4/4/2006 7:49:07 PM EDT
Cuz its fucking uncomfortable.
Unless you're a skinny bastard with long arms, its not that positive to access.
People will hate you muzzling them when you practice with it on the range.
Link Posted: 4/4/2006 11:23:49 PM EDT
More questions?
How long are you going to carry? A walk to the Deli or an 8 hour shift at work?
Are you sitting or standing?
How big is the gun? The .38 goes in my pocket, the P90 Ruger is horizontal, the Raging Bull is verticle. They all can be hidden with a light jacket. I'm 5" 10, 140# and for the most part they are comfortable,.
OH WAIT!! I live in Illinois and not allowd to CARRY!!!!!
PLEASE disreguard my above ramblings as it would be illegal for a law abiding Illinois resedent to protect himself.
Link Posted: 4/6/2006 10:23:24 AM EDT

Originally Posted By zyx5432:
I can't believe no one has said it yet. GET BOTH!

You will eventually want options depending on the season and wardrobe, so eventually, you can get both.



Damn strait...buy some hula shirts ( or lightweight fishing shirts from Magellan or Columbia) and wear a light t-shirt and you could hide a Tommy gun!
Don't go cheap it will only be wasting money. Galco makes a real good shoulder rig and get the belt tie downs. then get a Milt sparks IWB. YOU WILL BE HAPPY.
Link Posted: 4/6/2006 5:55:19 PM EDT
I've used a cheap shoulder holster. They get painful, fast... with a <25oz firearm. A Galco might be good, an Alessi might be good - be sure to have mag pouches or something on the non-gun side to balance weight, I'm told. I don't know anyone that actually wears a shoulder holster 8+ hours a day - the full time carry folks I'm aware of use IWB, OWB, belt slide, or ankle holsters.

Horizontal shoulder holsters have your weapon pointing at the people behind you.

All shoulder holsters I've seen require you to sweep people next to you on the draw. This should relegate you to one end of the shooting range or the other at most range - I know _I_ react badly to weapons pointed at me.

More limited concealment options - especially during hot summers, for those of us who have those.

Be careful not to scrape the inside of your arm - this, however, you can get used to easily enough and no longer scrape yourself (at least if you're thin - I don't have any experience not being thin).
Link Posted: 4/6/2006 6:21:13 PM EDT
I carry a G-23 in a Mitch Rosen's Express Line shoulder rig.
A flannel shirt half buttoned over a tee is plenty of concealment in the fall/winter/spring.
I wear it all day every day, and the weight isn't all that bad.....
It is VERY nice feeling to have 2 extra mags....

In the summer I carry with Galco IWB rig. Downfall of that is you have to also wear a mag holder....(if you are looking for extra mag.) And it can be a bit clunky while driving (seatbelts)

I have a harder time concealing the IWB, seeing as when I lift my arms...oops....well there is a gun sticking out.
I put on the shoulder rig and never worry about it being spotted. As for the draw, I am pretty quick with it...even with the thumb break. All it takes is a bit of practice with the weapon unloaded, and preferably with a practice mag...(for the weight)

I read that someone stated that people will get pissed if you practice drawing from a shoulder rig.....very true. Most ranges don't allow shoulder draw anyways. Once again unloaded practice is almost as effective......

To make a long post short, you will end up with both. Seeing as it's getting warmer I'd go with the IWB now, and get the shoulder rig this fall.

Oh, and on a final note; BUY ONE WITH WIDE STRAPS! the skinny straps really dig in after a few hours. I would also recommend the brass over the plastic fittings.
Good luck.
Link Posted: 4/6/2006 8:01:10 PM EDT
I have had for years but until now unused, a Bianchi Shark shoulder rig for my Sig P226. I did not care for the way it let the gun hang. It allowed the gun to hang grip down muzzle up by about 10 degrees off horizontal. So I fixed it by sewing another attachment ring on the holster. I wore it for about six hours the other night and it was ok but the center X did get to me a bit. It tends to ride at the bottom of my neck.
I think the 226 for the IWB carry would be quite uncomfortable anywhere other than SOB to around 4:00 with a strong cant, but this can be hard to reach. I have a Galco for OWB.

I wear a tool belt for work so if I want to carry all day I’ll have to shoulder my weapon.
An ankle carry is out also, running conduit in trenches and climbing ladders don’t think so. I have found that Carhartt makes what I now kindly refer to as the
“Carhartt carry vest” There is a nice pocket inside the vest that can hide large frame pistols. The vest is just thick enough not to print. The drawbacks are nothing guarding the trigger, loose fit could dislodge easily, and this would not be good for warm days.

So I am still working on a system that will allow me to carry all day and not interfear with my daily tasks.

Thanks to all who have replied so far.
Link Posted: 4/6/2006 8:04:42 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 4/6/2006 8:12:09 PM EDT by Rollyman]

Originally Posted By mikey250r:
More questions?
How long are you going to carry? A walk to the Deli or an 8 hour shift at work?
all day
Are you sitting or standing?
Sitting standing in trenches up ladders a lot of movement
How big is the gun?
Guns! Sig P226 9MM, Taurus 617-357 Mag 7 shot revolver, Walther P22 BUG maybe and I have a XD-45 on Lay-Away.
The .38 goes in my pocket, the P90 Ruger is horizontal, the Raging Bull is verticle. They all can be hidden with a light jacket. I'm 5" 10, 140# and for the most part they are comfortable,.
6' was 260 but shrinking down to 220 with any luck.
OH WAIT!! I live in Illinois and not allowd to CARRY!!!!!
PLEASE disreguard my above ramblings as it would be illegal for a law abiding Illinois resedent to protect himself.

Link Posted: 4/6/2006 9:22:12 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 4/6/2006 9:23:14 PM EDT by Maxxx]
Put it around your waist. I don't like to move where I carry my gun. I carry on my right hip. Works great for me.

The thing about sholder carry is that if I need a jacket, it will be zipped up. I can pull the jacket up over my hip before I can unzip it.

I try not to look tack-te-cul. I also don't want to be Miami Vice.
Link Posted: 4/6/2006 10:31:56 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 4/6/2006 10:36:26 PM EDT by WSmac]
Link Posted: 4/6/2006 10:44:15 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 4/6/2006 10:53:41 PM EDT by WSmac]

Originally Posted By Rollyman:
To me
The pros are
Gun and mags are under the arm and off the belt easy quick access.I have found that any gun/holster system takes practice to draw proficiently from. I do not find the shoulder holster to provide more "easy quick access" than belt riding guns. It just depends on the situation you find yourself in and how well you've trained with your system.

No problem sitting standing getting jabbed with the butt of gun or mags. With belt or shoulder carry, you have to watch where people's hands go. With a belt system, you might find the gun digs into your body or clunks against a hard seat or doorway. With a shoulder system (depending on the type), you might have this interesting object swinging to and fro causing your shirt to move unnaturally. You have to be careful about sitting down or standing by a short wall/bar/cafe booth and having your gun bump into that. Going to the potty... BELT - I hear some guys undo their belt at the unrinal . Guess it drops your pants in a hurry! No problem there with the shoulder unit. On the toilet, folks seem worried that someone will be peaking under their stall wall and see the belt holster and weapon, or they let their pants hit the floor. SHOULDER - urinal is no problem. Sitting means you'll have to undo the belt anchor strap (if you're system has one) and remember to reattach it when you get up. The Ken Null SKR has a small suspender clip that I attach to the front of my shirt. This holds the holster in place until I reattach the strap to my belt. A few extra seconds and very little effort. Pluses and minuses for any system.

The cons are
Must have a shirt or jacket on all the time not good for warm to hot climates. In hot weather, I like to wear a loose shirt over a t-shirt anyway, so that's not an issue for me.

Might be a bit constricting depending on model of gun and harness. Nothing new there since all guns and holsters have +'s and -'s





I like my shoulder holster for the 642. For my Glock30, I prefer to wear it on the belt. This is for everyday type of carry, not field situations.
Link Posted: 4/11/2006 9:33:38 AM EDT
I have used a Desantis leather shoulder rig for the last 15 years and love it.
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