Consider a Larger Gun for Concealed Carry

The size of a concealed carry gun should be as small as possible, right? Over the past several years, my opinion on this topic has changed quite a bit.

choosing a larger gun for concealed carry

My First Concealed Carry Gun:

Around 14 years ago, the police department issued me a .40 Glock 22. At the time, there weren't hundreds of holster options for concealed carry.

Or, maybe there were, and I never saw them.

For the most part, my concealed carry holster was made of leather and had a basic belt clip on it.

Holster design and engineering have come a long way, and now holsters come in different materials like Kydex and Bolteron. In addition, modern holsters have accessories like wings, claws, and wedges that help with comfort and concealment.

When I graduated from the Police academy, my wife surprised me by taking me to a local gun store. We purchased a third-generation .40 Glock 27 (still the best generation of Glock, in my opinion).

The Glock 27 was the sub-compact version of my issued G22. This small G27 would be my off-duty, concealed carry gun.

For the longest time, I resolved to the idea that a sub-compact size gun would be all I could conceal.

Especially that I was thin and small in stature, I never challenged this belief, and no one pointed me in any other direction. So for nearly a decade, I carried the G27 with eight rounds of .40 in a Safariland inside the waistband (IWB) holster.


glock 19

Challenging My Pre-conceived View:

This is the part of the story where I look back and realize that I became dogmatic in my approach to the size of my concealed carry gun. I convinced myself that I “knew best.”

Thinking about it, I wish I would have tried different holsters, carry methods, and guns instead of saying, “it works for me. I haven't had any problems with this setup.” But the thing is, I did have issues. I just didn't know it. And I should have at least challenged my view.

I am directing this post to myself at that time and anyone who can relate.

Perhaps you purchased the micro or sub-compact gun the store clerk recommended to you right before your concealed carry class. Maybe it actually isn't the best gun for you, or your needs and skills have changed since then.

most people can carry a larger gun

The Orion securely holds the Glock 19 in the AIWB position. (Photo: Jacki Billings)

Maybe you're small framed and think you can't conceal a gun larger than some tiny micro-compact Ruger LCP.

I hope to challenge your view on the idea of carrying a larger compact semi-auto handgun, or even full-size gun for concealed carry. I think most (not all) people can carry a larger gun than they think, and they can do it comfortably and without printing.


Why Consider a Larger Gun for Concealed Carry?

I wouldn't argue for the idea of carrying a larger size gun if there was no benefit. Here are some reasons to consider that larger gun for EDC.


Larger guns inherently have higher capacity. And while you may think you don't need more than “one good shot,” reality doesn't bear that to be factual. How much capacity? Well, my personal opinion would be not to carry anything with less than a 10 round capacity.

And yes, you can get extended magazines to increase the capacity of your existing handgun. The issue with that is if you add an extended magazine, you're making the part of the gun that is hard to conceal longer. So you're actually better off getting a larger gun from the get-go.

Let's use my Glock 27 as an example, whose standard capacity is 9 rounds. A Glock 23 (the same size as the well-known Glock 19) has a 14 round capacity. I could add a magazine extension that gives me 3 more rounds in my Glock 27. However, the added magazine length brought me to nearly the same size as the Glock 23.

magazine extensions

So I still had less capacity and don't get the other benefits of a larger gun.

I also understand that you have spare magazines, holsters, and accessories that you may have to replace if you change guns. The economics of it sucks, and there isn't a simple answer to that problem.

This is one reason why I really recommend that if you're looking for a concealed carry gun, you get with someone knowledgeable who can help you try different size guns.

Sight Radius and Barrel Length:

I don't want to put a massive weight on either of these factors, but it is worth mentioning. The greater the distance between the rear and front sights, the more forgiveness you have when they are misaligned. How much this factors into a typical self-defense shooting is probably negligible. However, when shooting at long distances, significant differences in sight radius are noticeable.

sight radius on a longer slide

Barrel length comes along with a longer slide and greater sight radius. The impact of an EDC gun's barrel length is primarily in projectile velocity. Velocity is more significant in long barrels compared to short. And velocity affects how self-defense, hollow point ammunition performs. We want consistent bullet penetration and expansion in our self-defense ammo.

Barrel length can also affect the accuracy but is not a significant factor for a concealed carry gun.

Grip Size and Ergonomics:

Your grip is an essential component of good shooting. The more contact our hand(s) make with the grip, the better control of the gun. This issue becomes evident for people with big hands when their fingers hang off the grip and provide no grip help.

But it is not just large-handed people who benefit from a larger grip. To a certain extent, even those with smaller hands can benefit from a larger grip surface area. Moreover, provided they can still adequately reach the magazine release, slide stop, and trigger, they feel more in control of a gun with a larger grip.

larger grip area is a bonus

Sure you can add aftermarket “pinky extensions” to the magazine to help mitigate this issue. However, it is a fix that isn't necessary with a bigger size gun.


Larger guns have some benefits in how they “feel” when you shoot them. For example, larger, heavier guns tend to produce less felt recoil. On the other hand, recoil in tiny size guns can be described as “poppy” or “snappy” because there isn't much mass to counteract the forces of the gun's cycle of operations.

Bigger semi-auto handguns tend to be easier to rack. The slide has more surface area to grab ahold of and the recoil springs are also not as stiff as small guns. You could add a product like this slide spider to your slide, for extra grip.


Now, this is going to seem counter-intuitive but hang in there for a second. I have found that guns with longer slides conceal better than a handgun with a shorter slide. This fact is especially true when carrying in the appendix position but is applicable in traditional IWB (3 -4 o'clock).

The reason for this is that it places more of the gun's length below the beltline. Think of the gun as a lever, and the belt as a fulcrum. Our belly naturally presses the back of the gun away and over top of the belt. If there is not counter leverage applied to the muzzle end of the gun, the gun leans out over the belt and prints. A longer slide (and holster) counteracts this force and pressed the gun's grip back into the body, which provides greater concealment.

Low Profile EDC Belt

The slide length of a sub-compact Glock 27 is 6.26,” and a Glock 23's slide length is 7.32″. The difference between a sub-compact and a full-size Glock is barely over an inch. The extra slide length isn't significant enough to cause any comfort issue for most people. But the extra inch does allow better leveraging of the gun.

Optic Mounts:

You may not yet have a red-dot optic on your EDC, but their benefits are becoming harder and harder to ignore. Even people like myself who were hesitant to adopt the technology several years ago have changed their minds and now have optics on their handguns.

p365 shield rmrsc

Slides on small guns like the Sig P365 and the Springfield Hellcat are wide enough to mount the newer micro red-dots. But some of the older micro-compact firearms don't have the option. And no company will do a slide cut on some of these guns because there just isn't enough material there to cut.

Some Drawbacks of a Large Size Gun

Carrying a large gun is not without its drawbacks. Here are some challenges you will have to overcome.

Added Weight:

Bigger guns weigh more. There isn't any getting around that reality. Also, with increased capacity comes added weight. So a good gun belt like this one from EDC Belt Company becomes even more critical considering the added weight. A sturdy, structured belt can help distribute the added weight and keep the gun in place.

foundation belt gun belt

Grip Length:

Often, it isn't the increased weight or longer slide that is the biggest issue for concealment. Rather it is the length of the grip. Grip length increases with a larger gun and higher capacity. You may feel your torso is so narrow the grip length is nearly impossible to overcome, but don't give up hope.

Selecting the right holster makes a massive difference.

Holster/Gear Selection:

phlster pro series best holster

If you carry a large handgun for your EDC, you need to select a good holster. These holsters are often more expensive but so worth it. Components like wedges distribute pressure and eliminate hot spots while providing increased counter leverage to the gun. In addition, wedges make carrying a big gun more comfortable and concealable. A couple of my favorite companies are Phlster and Tier One Concealed.

Claws or wings provide a twisting force to the gun's grip by pushing on the backside of the belt. The pressure forces the grip of the gun into the body and makes the grip disappear.

Along with the holster, consider where on your body you carry the gun. I find appendix carry balances access, comfort, and concealment best.


Carrying a larger gun may not be of interest to you. And you may not want to change because of the money invested in your existing EDC.

However, if you're on the path of choosing a new or your first concealed carry handgun, don't box yourself into sub-compacts only. Nearly anyone can successfully conceal a Glock19-sized, compact handgun with the right holster.

Archon Type b

I currently carry an Archon Type B, which is slightly larger than a Glock 19. Before switching to the Type B, my primary EDC carry was a Glock 19. I still occasionally carry my Sig P365, which balances capacity and size in the best way imaginable.

Have you transitioned to a larger handgun for EDC? Feel free to share your comments below.

Have you checked out Guardian Nation? It is our subscription service for everyday concealed carriers who like training and gear. You receive a quarterly gearbox and have access to our entire training library and member-only discounts.

Get a 14-day Free Trial and Learn More

About Matthew Maruster

I follow my Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ who is the eternal co-equal Son of God. I currently live in Columbus, Ohio with my wife and daughter. I served in the Marine Corps Infantry. I was a Staff Sergeant and served as a Platoon Sergeant during combat in Iraq. After I was a police officer at a municipal agency in San Diego County. I have a Bachelors's Degree in Criminal Justice from National University. MJ Maruster Defense.


  1. Christopher Reeves on August 13, 2021 at 4:28 pm

    This is a great article.I find it easier to conceal larger guns. I find guns with at least a 4″ barrel conceal alot better . I had more trouble concealing my MP Shield 1.0 with a 3″ barrel, because while carrying appendix, the gun is constantly tipping forward over the belt line, because it is not enough muzzle in the waist line.

    I enjoy carrying my Springfield Armory XD9 4″ service model and Glock 17 anyday over my M&P Shield. I also find having larger hands, I can get a better purchase on these guns and of course higher capacity is better in my opinion. I would opt for a full purchase on the gun, longer sight radius and larger capacity anyday over the week over a sub compact gun.

    I have quickly learned to that sub compacts are not always the best choices for concealed carry. Concealed carry is not about comfort in my opinion, it is about what suits your needs. You can never go wrong with a compact or full size gun.

    • jColes3 on August 16, 2021 at 6:25 am

      Christopher: I’ve been a Ruger guy for 25 years, mostly carrying a P90, 45 ACP.
      The Old P is light, thin, utterly reliable & carries well; but lacks capacity in its virgin form…7+1. With longer mag in place, 10+1 but the longer mag made the old girl a high printer.
      Then came my Sig P365. What a jewel! Small, thin, light, high capacity, now 15+1.
      I’m just not real accurate with it much beyond close encounter range … not good.
      So now I’ve gone back to my roots: a 1911 full size, high capacity. I have two RIA 1911s, one in 10mm, the other in 9 mm. Where I live open carry is about as common as concealed carry so how I carry doesn’t matter much.
      My solution for carrying either of these big pistolas combines elements of both styles: I bought a model 1905 US cavalry officer Sam Brown Belt with cross
      strap, two mag pouches; and a model 1915 flap holster, plus a model 1912 AG officer open top holster. The whole set is made of bison leather.
      The flap holster is for the woods, the open top for town carry. .. cross draw style.
      I’m average height, slender build, not macho muscular but the “three point suspension” supports the heavy pistol & keeps holster & pistol tight to my body..
      Either gun carries easily, and when I put a t-shirt over the cross strap the whole rig just disappears; even though with extra mags in place the set adds about five pounds of weight.
      But worth it both in terms of the rig’s cost and weight…my accuracy is much better with the bigger pistol.

    • Daniel Hamilton on August 16, 2021 at 9:48 am

      Although I have both a Ruger LC9s and a Sig P365 (with the 12 and 15 round mags), I prefer using larger 9mm pistols for concealed carry. Presently, I have been carrying my CZ P10-S with a HYVE +3 round extension. That gives me a 15+1 capacity. The HYVE +3 extensions were recommended to me by an Employee of CZ. The HYVE +3 extensions work.
      I still use an older S&W M&P 9C (not a 2.0 model), with a 15 round magazine. I had also installed an APEX trigger system on it.
      I am about to push my Canik TP9 Elite SC into the role of concealed carry too. I have 15 round OEM mags for it. This pistol has eaten several different brands of ammo, including Federal, Winchester, IMI, Norma, Fiocchi and Blazer and bullet types in FMJ, JHP and a MHP (Monolith Hollow Point) and bullet weights from 108gr to 158gr. The Canik ate everything I had fed it without a single hiccup. The Canik TP9 series has an extremely smooth trigger with a pull weight of around 3.5 lbs.
      The Canik website has this about their entry into NATO. “The TP9SF is a 9mm striker-fired pistol that has successfully passed 60,000 round torture tests without any failures, while still maintaining NATO standards for accuracy.”
      I have installed night sights on all of my EDC pistols, because I want to see my sights regardless of the time of day, or night.
      I use outside belt carry, Kydex holsters, specifically made for each one. I do have two leather holsters that fit these pistols perfectly, but the Kydex holsters are for regular use. I use thick belts made of single piece, 12/13 oz Premium Full Grain leather that are 3/16″ to 13/64″ thick. They’re Amish made belts. I’ve used these belts exclusively for well over 10 years.

      • Steve on August 16, 2021 at 7:53 pm

        Started with sig P938 , never was happy with mag capacity. Switch to P320 in .40 cal , liked the larger capacity but it was heavy and a little to thick. Recently bought the P365XL w/ Romeo Zero sight and love it. Slimmer and 12 or 15 rd magazine

        • Dennis on May 27, 2023 at 11:30 am

          Have transitioned from Glock 19 to Glock 30. 10-11 rounds of Hornady 45 acp 185gr HP. Use Kore essential belt with High Noon Hidden Alley for IWB tucked carry. Then Active ProGear vest type holster/2 mag carrier. Discrete/comfortable all day long. Having 45 acp and 10+ rounds is comforting. Older and slower!

    • Frank on August 16, 2021 at 10:09 am

      I believe that you forgot one additional advantage for a larger gun. A larger gun usually means a longer barrel which creates a faster bullet making it more lethal. As for me, I carry a light weight commander and have been thinking of changing to a full size 45 for that reason.

    • Chris on September 29, 2021 at 5:27 pm

      Comfort is part of carrying if you think about it. It’s not a factor for everyone, but it it’s not comfortable people might not carry as much. I know when I first started carrying I had a full size 9mm. I couldn’t find a carry holster or position that was comfortable with that gun. I didn’t carry much at all. I ended up with a xds 2.0 45 acp. I went through a few holsters with this gun but I have found a blue star kydex holster that I find very comfortable with this gun carrying at the 4 o’clock position. I have rolled around on the ground working on a vehicle and almost forget I’m carrying when doing normal activities. I know I am giving up capacity with this edc. There might have been a better choice but at the time this is what felt good in my hands and in my price range. I also carry an extra mag which between the two mags still puts me under thr capacity of a single mag in other pistols but I carry it more because it’s not digging in and it’s not tugging bad on my pants.

  2. Gerry Jantsch on August 13, 2021 at 5:44 pm

    I used to carry the original Sign 365 when it first came out. I liked it alot. Then Sign came out with the 365XL with a 3 3/4″ barrel with Romeo 0 red dot. I have since added a new 4 1/4″ threaded barrel to it. I still have the 12 plus 1 when I am carrying and have the 15 Rd mag as my spare because the 15 Rd mag prints to much. I carry at the 4 o’clock position. Appendix does not work very well for me as I do a lot of sitting and it is uncomfortable for me

  3. Tony on August 13, 2021 at 9:40 pm

    This is timely. I’ve owned and carried only a Glock 26 for over a decade. But I often carry it with a 17 rd magazine because I believe I can conceal fine and like the extra grip length when drawing and the extra capacity. I have had to really fiddle with the holster to manage the weight distribution, including a home-made wedge.

    Recently, I’ve been looking beyond the world of Glock and smaller guns and have been interested in something like the Walther PDP. I don’t think the 4.5″ or 5″ barrel is feasible for me for concealment, but I could always get the 4″ and try out the longer barrel/slide later. However, the grip of the compact/15 rd is still pretty long, longer then my G26 with 17 rd magazine. And the full size grip of 18 rds is even longer and more available (and affordable in some cases).
    But I may just go ahead and get the 4″ full size, if I can get a good holster to make it work.

  4. ranaln74 on August 14, 2021 at 7:50 am

    I been considering the FN 5 7, if I can carry glock 19 in or out of waist band I should be fine with a 5 7, especially in the cooler months.

  5. Dave on August 15, 2021 at 12:11 pm

    I guess I’m the lone hold out. I find that my Shield Plus works well for my manner of carry. I can understand the longer sight plane advantage but with 13+1 I feel that my capacity is adequate. I also like the weight and the way I can easily draw the weapon for my size.

  6. RACHEL WAITE on August 15, 2021 at 10:27 pm

    Let me first say that I am not anti Glock just because I am pro 1911. Carrying 1911 is simply my personal choice. I am female and my gun choices have all been my own. My husband doesn’t have knowledge of firearms and was therefore no influence. I have always desired heavy stainless steel. S&W revolver was first choice as I was new to guns 6 years ago. My next choice was 1911, stainless steel, gov’t model. I began carrying owb with leather holster at 3 o’clock position Great for concealment. Now carry Dan Wesson Bruin, 6 inch barrel, owb, with 2 extra mags. I have added on the same belt, owb, a sig p238 appendix position. I can completely conceal with skirt or jeans and over-blouse. It feels great! I have trained from concealed with the 1911 at Front Sight in NV and feel very confident with my large gun carry choice.

    • jColes3 on August 16, 2021 at 6:32 am

      Rachel — Excellent!!
      I hope your husband realizes what a jewel he has! My wife of 54 years is just beginning to get into shooting but still refuses to carry, even in these dangerous times.
      Stay safe!!

  7. Adam K on August 15, 2021 at 10:41 pm

    I find that an H&K P30L fits quite nicely in the 4 o’clock position. Not as heavy as one would expect, and it has a nice long sight radius and is easily cover3ed, even in a slightly loose tee shirt. I still use a P365 when I need deeper concealment. Lately I have been trying to use my Beretta 92 LTT as my EDC, but it seems that is just a bit heavy and I need to cinch my belt more – will take some getting used to.

  8. Beraldo A. Vazquez, M.D. on August 15, 2021 at 11:05 pm

    Enjoyed reading your article I carry a Glock 30S (.45ACP 10 rds) a ankle holster by Galco and a Colt Gold Cup 1911 8 rds on my right hip OWB. The weight is heavy but it has never been problematic for me and I’m very comfortable with the .45s.

    B. Vázquez

  9. Edward Patterson on August 15, 2021 at 11:22 pm

    I have always carried a sub compact, but for about the last year I have been carrying a Berretta 92FS full size. I carry it in a Alien Gear IWB holster. It has been very comfortable, I don’t really notice the weight difference anymore, and didn’t take long to get used to it.
    It has a 4.9″ barrell, I carry an 18 round mag in it.
    I have never had anyone tell me they could see it printing.

  10. Frank on August 15, 2021 at 11:46 pm

    Really good article and food for thought. I will definitely be taking the time to try out some my larger gun options in place of my current sub compact.

  11. Jerry Crosley on August 16, 2021 at 2:33 am

    I have 58 years of concealed experience, on duty and off. I am a 1911 person but I have owned more than fifty different striker fired weapons as well as SA and SA/DA. I started carrying when I weighed about 160 lbs. I now weigh 215 and use a walker to get around. My sub compact choice is a 10+1 Glock 43x which is super easy to deep carry with just about any IWB rig. My 1911s and Hi Powers are usually IWB and I’ve managed to conceal them well for over 50 years. How to do it best is a very individual choice depending on your build, type of retention you choose, as well as your choice of clothing. I handle sub compacts well, but for two years I carried a full size Detonics 1911 in southern Florida without showing that I was armed. I totally agree with the concept of a full sized EDC and do it often, even at my age. I’m an old fart but I still shoot what I carry pretty dangled well.

  12. DEFENDER on August 16, 2021 at 3:15 am

    The 1st thing to know is Trained Police(Nation Wide) have a “Hit Rate” of only 20% in “Real Fights”. There is a reason for that – If you ever get into a “Real Fight” you will know why. It is “nothing like” shooting at your local Gun Range.

    Are You better trained than Police ?
    I have always said – you should carry the biggest gun(Capacity)(9mm) you can.
    And at least 1 reload.
    Most Police carry Full Size 14 or 17rds in gun + 2 reloads.
    + a BUG(Back-up Gun)(Usually Ankle Revolver)

    “By Far” the most important thing about Conceal Carry is 1st
    Get some Real Training.
    NOT just Flat Range training – that is Not Real “Training”.

    “TRAINING” means – Quick Draw, Solid, Pro-Grade Draw Mechanics, Shooting and moving, Defensive Positions, use of “Cover”, etc
    Most important – “Combat Shooting” – Concept and Training.

    I now carry 12 Rd Compact Gun, copy of my full size 17rd match gun.

    Best advise of all:
    Find an IDPA match nearest to you – go watch, then ask questions.
    Held Nation Wide at Gun Clubs – see the web site IDPA to find a club/match near you.
    “Very” friendly to new shooters. Sit-in on the “New Shooter Meeting” – even if you are not shooting that day.

    IDPA – Intl Defensive Pistol Assoc.
    You will learn a Boat-Load of Info on Concealed Carry.
    And they can direct you to a local Instructor.

    State and DHS Certified Instructor
    Ranked Competition Shooter
    Survivor – 3 Real Gun-Fights

    Good luck, be Safe.

  13. ANTHONY SOUZA on August 16, 2021 at 3:40 am

    After 30 years of IWB I started wearing suspenders (and added waistline, lol). I am starting all over again to get the right holster. Any Suggestions?

    • Matt Kough on September 29, 2021 at 5:19 pm

      Honestly, I carry my p2000 with a standard IWB kydex. It fits fine. and doesn’t sag because i cinch up the suspenders.

  14. Nan on August 16, 2021 at 5:38 am

    I am a female with a round midsection, so carrying on body doesn’t apply the same as most males. I used to wear a belly band at work and cc my S&W M&P 9C, of course wearing a fuller lab coat (worked in healthcare, medical office). I then bought a S&W M&P Shield 9mm which I loved due to comfort and better concealment, and the band allowed me to carry an extra magazine or two if I wanted. Over the years now that I am retired, I don’t have the luxury of wearing my lab coat so I mostly carry in purse. Due to weight of the firearms, I now have a S&W M&P Bodyguard .380mm along with 2 extra magazines. The weight is tolerable but I still felt more secure wearing on body. If there was a holster designed for the female body, or at least somewhere one could go for a decent “fitting” with suggestions AND the availability to buy on site, I would be the first in line. However, buying online is difficult since most comments are by males or young females who don’t have the body issues of a 65+ yo female with a curvy body. Just saying.

    • Cookie on August 16, 2021 at 1:27 pm

      Nan, I would be second in line, right behind you! Wish I could find a “ladies only gear” shop

  15. TDR on August 16, 2021 at 7:22 am

    Ah yes, I like one of the our readers I to carry a Sig 365 always have, but prior to that it was the Glock 43 which now is mounted under my office desk. I find the 365 gives me what a EDC should be, especially in the summer time when wearing shorts and a tee shirt.
    I have now switched to my Sig P229 Nitro for winter carry ,it is a bit heavier but still with in comfort range. Now for ammo which is in my 365 and 229 its Underwood +P and that’s enough stopping power for self defense.

    Semper Fi

  16. Robby on August 16, 2021 at 8:16 am

    I have been carrying for 40+ years. Never carried for a job. I started with a .380 then changed quickly to a full size H&K USP 9mm. I changed to a Glock 27 for a very short while from there but again changed, this time to a H&K VP9 full size with 15 round magazine. All my carry guns I wore OWB until I discovered the Alien Gear IWB. What a difference! I carry at 4 O’clock position on a sturdy gun belt and sometimes in the winter I wear a belt suspender with belt loops. A belt suspender takes the weight off the hip and moves it to the shoulders. I can wear any size gun this way and printing is never an issue.

  17. William Hill on August 16, 2021 at 8:53 am

    I carry a Sig P226 in a Blackhawk CQC holster and it conceals fine as long as I wear appropriate clothing.

  18. Kyle Spisak on August 16, 2021 at 9:51 am

    Guys just made the switch from Glock 26 strong side to Glock 19 appendix and am having immense trouble concealing. It looks so awkward and deformed like I have a weird bulge in the front of my pants.

    I’m trying all of the different ride and can’t adjustments for my Tier 1 Axis Elite holster. I ordered the Appendix Belt from Nex Belt to see if that makes a difference.

    Any advice??? I really want this to work I have invested a lot of money.

    I’m 5’9 165 lbs and having that holster in the front of my pants just looks so weird and deformed. It’s impossible to sit or bend down too. How does anyone manage appendix carry? I don’t understand.

    • Matthew Maruster on August 17, 2021 at 8:22 am

      Hi Kyle, are you using a wedge with that holster? I find the wedge helps a lot with comfort and concealment. Also, have you tried any adjustments with the ride height? Are you carrying at 12 o’clock or more like 1 o’clock?

  19. Gene Bashaw on August 16, 2021 at 7:51 pm

    Good article. Will get folks thinking. My first pistol 40 odd years ago was a Series 70 Government Model .45, which I still have and carried for a few years. Then came the Beretta M-.9 Being a vet, I wanted the M-9.. Carried it IWB too, in one of Clingers holsters with no issues. Then I wanted the Beretta Model 84 in .380, for when the M-9 would print because of my dress shirts. Well, I found a Beretta PX-4, full size. In a Clinger holster too at 3:00. This one has been there now for three years, and I am not going to change it out. I do still have the others, but this one just “fits”. You know the feeling.

  20. Kyle Spisak on August 17, 2021 at 9:24 am

    Mathew, I have a large wedge right now but I think it’s too….large haha. I ordered a medium wedge and have been shifting from 12-1 o clock. Have yet to adjust ride height. Determined to figure this out!!!

    • Matthew Maruster on August 17, 2021 at 10:08 am

      It really is a process of figuring out how to balance all the different factors to find out how you can get it to work best for your particular situation. Mess around with how high the gun sits above the belt. It might not seem like the adjustments would make a big difference but they certainly can. I find that the closer to 12 o’clock the lower you can carry the pistol and less it interferes with sitting and squatting (not at all actually. The higher you carry it the more it interferes with bending. There is going to be a bulge in the front of your pants that wasn’t there when you carried at 4 o’clock, but I find for the most part it is less noticeable than the asymmetric bulge at 4 o’clock. Feel free to email me if it is easier to send photos and whatnot. ma*****@co************.com

  21. SantaFeSlinger on August 17, 2021 at 9:50 am

    I too have discovered that a larger gun can be concealed well with the right holster. I have a FNS-9 that in a Vedder LightTuck (with claw) at 3pm that conceals just as well as my P365. The holster rides low but allows a full grip purchase. I usually dress in loose fitting shirts and I am thicker around the middle so the longer grip is not a problem for me to conceal. I love my Kore Essentials gun belt and use elastic suspenders over my undershirt to more evenly distribute the increased weight. It took me a year of experimentation with different pistols and holster but I am now a convert to the ease and advantages of carrying a larger pistol.

  22. Ryan on August 2, 2023 at 9:23 pm

    Personally, I started with relatively small guns like the G27 and the Kahr PM40, tried a few compacts but wasn’t in the right frame of mind to keep and carry them.

    But after trying to carry a very large gun (HK45) last year out of curiosity, I decided to just sack-up and carry a full-size gun because I shoot them WAY better than any smaller ones and nobody really notices I’m carrying anyway.

    My Glock 22 doesn’t quite disappear like the 27 did, but damned if it ain’t comforting to know I can reliably make upper thoracic cavity hits at 50 yards and head hits at 35 or 40 yards, I have 15 chances to end the situation, and even if I have to draw iron with winter gloves on I can still easily handle the pistol. Absolutely none of which can be said for a compact or subcompact.

Leave a Comment