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Appendix Carry – Is this for you?

Posted by Rob Longenecker on November 10th, 2006


By Gabe Suarez www.suarezinternational.com

“Objective: To be able to carry a full size fighting pistol day to day, concealed, yet quickly available.
Solution: Consider the Strong Side Belly Carry, aka Appendix Carry

Appendix Carry carry is a carry position that has been around for many years and was very popular in the Old West as is evidenced by pictures of the era. In today’s Wild West (and East and North and South) this type of carry affords ease of deployment when seated as well as when in crowds. It all but prevents the “bump frisk” when someone, well-meaning or not, bumps against your gun and asks “What’s that?”

Other advantages –

    * Considerably easier to draw with weak hand.
    * Easier to draw while seated, particularly in a vehicle.
    * Comfortable and not encumbered by the seatbelt.
    * Not as likely to snag on clothing during the draw.
    * Allows Covert Draw – can have hand already on the gun concealed by shirt

So why isn’t it adopted across the board??

Some shooting schools that have had a very profound influence on the tactical community eschew anything but a traditional strong side hip carry. Competitions based on the teachings of these schools follow their “logic” by disallowing anything except traditional carry modes, even if thos ecarry modes have a legitimate and directly applicable place in the real world which they are supposedly training for.  An example, many guys carry in a pocket…or in a fanny pack, yet how many “shooting schools”, or competitions would ever allow such a thing in their classes??

Some trainers consider crossdraw and appendix carry dangerous on the range because it may create a muzzle covering, albeit briefly, the person to your side or your own leg as you draw.  My opinion on this is that this is a training issue, and that even with a traditional strong side carry students routinely cover their own legs on the draw and holstering.  Look at your own draw and examine closely the line traced by the muzzle.  Everyone covers their legs and hips when they draw unless they are using a ceremonial shooting school holster.

Point of note: One such school who advocates extremely traditional methods, and exclusive strong side hip carry has had a number of student self-inflicted shots during the holstering/drawing phase. If traditional strong side hip carry did not cover any body part the errant shot would have harmelessly gone to the ground, no? (It doesn’t help if the class has 50 students on the line at one time and over emphasizes timed drills, but that’s another issue).

Some believe this type of carry is more difficult to conceal. I think this is largely dependant on how you dress. I think if you wear a business suit on a daily basis, as men did a generation ago, this may not be for you.  But if a tails out shirt, or a large t-shirt is you mode of daily dress, then this type of carry is MORE concealable than traditional strong side carry. I like to carry large guns, and they always print (the outline of the gun grip seen ) when worn strong-side with certain body movements. Here in Arizona I see people printing strong-side on an everyday basis.

Some say its slower to draw.  Nope. Not hardly. Get a timer.  Try it!  Weapon retention is far easier with this type of carry than with traditional strong side hip carry.

As far as competition goes, I’m not bothered by their rules since my focus is on combat. I would submit that a competition that disallows crossdraw, pocket carry, fanny packs, and yes even shoulder rigs, is not as “reality oriented” as they advertise. Same goes for schools.

Give it a try with your next dry fire session and see how it works for you.”

Tucker’s Cover Up IWB is a perfect choice for this method and I’m getting more and more orders with appendix carry in mind. What people like is the trim profile with no excess leather, the height adjustments available and the ability to choose your cant angle with the Cover Up.

If IWB is not for you, then Tucker’s Pancake holster or Compact Pancake is ideal and can be set with a vertical cant upon request.

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