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Old September 30, 2008, 07:46 PM   #1
GrumpyOldSwede
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Needed: some advise for crippled concealed carry

I am hoping that perhaps you can help me out. My wife is disabled due to a stroke, leaving her right arm and hand basically useless for shooting. After trying out several pistols, she discovered she can shoot a Sig P232. She of course shoots left handed now.

I am trying to discover the optimum way for her to carry. I believe that on the body is best, not a purse or some other off body method. Because she is small, and quite vulnerable, I am hoping to discover a good way for her to protect herself when I am not around.

So you can think this through, please keep in mind:

She needs to have a holster that is worn easily, being able to put it on with one hand.

She will not be able to use the "off hand" to lift up jacket or shirt to access pistol. (her fingers are generally in a claw position, not able to grasp things)

If she walks around with her hand in her pocket, (holding pistol), she will be unable to push grocery cart, unlock vehicle, etc.

Thanks for your help and ideas. Best regards, Grumpy Old Swede
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Old September 30, 2008, 09:31 PM   #2
Ohio Rusty
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One of the instructors in our CCW class was a woman. She had a neat rig that was a soft holster that carried a pistol horizontally. The holster had clips that clipped to the bottom of her bra, and the pistol sat in the hollow of her sternum. You never knew it was there until she pulled it out. She pulled the pistol out one handed with her shooting hand. She was showing the many options for women, including the holster purse, IWB holster, etc.

Something like this may be easily doable for your wife since she is limited to one handed use.
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Old September 30, 2008, 09:34 PM   #3
Deaf Smith
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Grumpy,

How does she chamber a round in the Sig? She keeps in chamber loaded? Do you set the gun up loaded for her?

Now can she fire the Sig DA? That is long trigger pull. If so, can she shoot a S&W Centennial .38? There are lots of pocket carry holsters made for the Smith snub but I don't know of any for the 232.

If not, how about a fanny pack. Galco and other companies make them. You can even get a logo off a Pangota or Nothern Face and glue it on the Galco pack to make it look yuppy and not a gun fanny pack. Many have velcro to keep the gun concealed and are fast to open.

Hope that helps.
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Old October 1, 2008, 06:05 AM   #4
Gunsmom
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Advice for concealed carry

How does your wife typically dress?

I know one lady who usually carries in a Smart Carry, underneath her clothing. She often wears rather loose dresses which have pockets on the side seams. The right-hand pockets have been altered so that her hand can go through the pocket to the holster and pull her gun back through. She's also practiced shooting from low and in front of her, so that she can shoot through the dress, if necessary. She does wear tee shirts under the dress as the velcro on the Smart Carry irritates her skin if worn directly against it. I don't know if your wife could manage that, if she has to dress herself.

I think a fanny pack might also work. The Tommy's Gun Pack is made so that she should be able to draw with one hand; again, getting it on by herself might be the hard part. Some sizes of Tommy's come in colors. It also has enough pockets to actually use it to carry an ID card or driver's license, a little cash, a cell phone, etc. It could be disguised with another brand's logo or an applique or two or some such. The Tommy's pack looks pretty ordinary, though; besides that, I would be very surprised if anyone who doesn't know her would ever suspect your wife of carrying!
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Old October 1, 2008, 02:07 PM   #5
Night Watch
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My recommendation would be for a belt holster. (You learn to dress around it; and, when it's off your waist, you can place the entire rig in a large purse.) Possibly a paddle design from Greg Kramer.

Very few people go about in constant, 'combat mode' expecting an attack to occur at any moment; consequently, the hand on the gun idea doesn't make too much sense to me. I get the impression that some basic self-defense training may be in order. (Think NRA!)

Neither do I understand why your wife would be comfortable using a blowback operated pistol like the SIG P-232? That's a lot of extra recoil for a frail one-handed woman to have to deal with. One of my BUGS is a 32 acp Beretta Tom Cat with a Tip-Up barrel. It's got a nice wide backstrap, is easy to hold onto during recoil, holds 8 rounds, and is easy to load with one hand.

However, there's no firing pin block in a Tom Cat; so, your wife would need to carry it inside a secure holster and always have a firm grip whenever she draws. If there's any possibility, whatsoever, that she might drop the weapon then I'd be against recommending a Tom Cat for C-1 carry.

My own wife's carry gun is a 357 magnum/38 special Ruger SP-101 with a 3" barrel and hammer spur to allow her the option of thumbing back the hammer and scoring on longer shots. The tradeoff is that while this revolver is very safe to carry, it takes practice (and good backstrap control) in order to double-action fire it accurately and well.

Another nice thing about the Ruger SP-101 is that it's now available in 327 magnum caliber for those individuals who are particularly recoil sensitive! This new SP-101 will also chamber much softer shooting: 32 S&W, 32 S&W Long, and 32 H&R cartridges - Making the new Ruger 327 magnum SP-101 a nicely versatile multiple caliber revolver!

Ruger SP-101, 327 Magnum
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Old October 1, 2008, 02:48 PM   #6
Erik
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"How does your wife typically dress?"

X2

The answer will, as with anyone else, help with the quality of advise.
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Old October 1, 2008, 05:16 PM   #7
BillCA
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If possible, find a local shop with a wide selection of holster types and let her see what she considers a good one. Just trying them on for position or how they attach is a start. Then order one for her gun and try it out to make sure she likes it.

For any holster, look for one with a reinforced mouth so she can reholster her Sig one-handed.

Fanny packs, I would think, are out. They usually require two hands to get the belt around the waist (or lots o' fiddlin' one handed).

You might look at something like Galco's Yaqui Paddle holster (doesn't make much sense to me, but it's available for the P232). She might find a paddle holster much easier to deal with than a OWB or IWB.

For IWB holsters, pay attention to the type of belt hook. The "J" hooks, in my experience, are a pain in the behind to get set up on a belt properly. You might want to see if holsters with belt-snaps, similar to the Milt Sparks VM2 will work better for her.

If she wears pants with pockets which are loose and comfortable, she might be able to use a pocket holster. But this will depend on her left-hand manual dexterity and ability to release the safety in a hurry.

A standard OWB belt holster, if worn with pants, can be put on to the belt/pants before dressing with one hand. It will require some practice however. Be sure to pay attention to the side of the belt slots here. Also plan to purchase an appropriate ladies gun belt to support the weight of the gun.

Women's fashions are far different than men's. If she prefers tops/blouses that are worn outside the beltline, she may have to adapt a little bit to carry a gun around the waist. Either shorter tops (which may not be to her liking) or tucked-in tops with enough shirt-tail to ensure they don't "un-tuck" during normal motion.

Presupposing that she wears a pair of slacks, belt, a tucked in blouse and tosses on a light sweater or jacket over the gun, she still needs to practice sweeping the cover garment out of her way.

This is typcially done by placing the fingers of the strong hand, palm up or just slightly back, just forward of the front edge of the garment's opening. With a smooth, sweeping motion, move the hand rearwards above the grip line of the gun. As soon as the hand is past the grip, straighten the fingers downward and move the hand forward to grip & draw the gun.

Because women's clothing is often made of light fabrics, sweeping a thin or lightweight cover garment out of the way can be difficult. Add a small amount of weight to the garment by putting car keys or something similar (3-4oz) in the strong side pocket. This will add inertia to the fabric's movement and keep it moving back, even in a light wind. If the garment lacks pockets, sew some small weights at the bottom of the hem, forward of the 3/9 o'clock position.

That's as much as I can offer at the moment.
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Old October 3, 2008, 10:28 AM   #8
WESHOOT2
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shape

Suggest contacting directly Alessi, Sparks, others, for discussion.

Certain makers (Galco?) offer shaped-for-ladies gear...
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Old October 4, 2008, 09:25 PM   #9
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You might look at:

http://www.jagwear.com/jagwr4-4.htm

They are reasonably priced and she can try one, or more that might work for her. I also think that perhaps a S&W .38 revolver might do her better than a semi-automatic.
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Old October 6, 2008, 01:04 PM   #10
jfruser
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Hmm, tough call.

A lefty shoulder holster might be of use and can be gotten into one-handed. They are also often female-friendly.

I would second BillCA's suggestion to try some out. Barring that, call a custom maker and talk to them.
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