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Preview – Professional CCW Gear

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Big Names In the Industry Give Us the Lowdown on Their CCW Gear

Concealed carry can get as complex as you want it. At the raw basic level, all you need is a handgun and a way to hide it. However, if you’ve gone beyond the fundamental concept and currently carry, or are strongly considering taking active measures of personal defense, you’re going to need a little more.

We wish we could tell you to just carry X gun with Y holster in Z position, but life is rarely that simple. The reason why there are so many holsters in such a wide variety of configurations is because everyone is a little different. This isn’t to be construed to say that all options are equal or that there aren’t better holsters or better guns out in the world — just like we can objectively state that some cars are better than others, gear can be the same way. Every person has to balance weight, anticipated threat, accessibility, comfort, concealability, what modifications they’re comfortable with, and as usual, price.

Just as in our previous special issue of Concealment, we bring forth a group of experts and examine what and how they carry concealed. They range from the imposingly large Steve Fisher to the pocket-sized Candice Horner, with many in-between. Their insight and expertise will give you a starting point or present further thoughts and considerations about your own setup. Compare and contrast their configurations with your own, train, and carry accordingly.

One should also bear in mind that as highly visible members of the professional shooting community, there are going to be at least some affiliations with manufacturers. We’ve disclosed the applicable companies for your consideration. But on the other hand, whether these people have been compensated in some form in the past or not, we asked them point blank if this what they rely on to defend their lives and the lives of their loved ones. And they do.

Greg Ellifritz
Organization: Active Response Training
Job title: President and chief instructor
Service Background: Currently a police officer in a suburb of Columbus, Ohio
CCW pistol: Glock Model 19 9mm
Modifications: Home stippling job and magazine cutouts, Trijicon HD sights, Ghost “Bullet” slide release lever
Holster: Spencer Keepers’ custom “Keeper” appendix holster
Position of CCW holster: Appendix
Affiliations: Spencer Keepers’


“The customization allows for enhanced performance without negatively impacting reliability. High visibility sights replace the fragile Glock factory sights. Stippling for a better grip surface. A replacement slide release that I can actually use. It may be ugly, but it’s as close to ‘Glock perfection’ as I can make it.”

Steve “Yeti” Fisher
Organization: Sentinel Concepts
Job title: Owner / primary instructor
Service Background: Current reserve deputy sheriff
CCW pistol: Nighthawk Falcon 9mm
Modifications: Finish by hillbilly223, RMR 06 From Trijicon, 10-8 flat face trigger
Holster: Raven Phantom OWB/IWB
Position of CCW holster: Either at the 1:30 or 3 position
Affiliations: Trijicon, Nighthawk, Raven Concealment


“It’s a 1911 — enough said. The addition of the Trijicon RMR to the 1911 brings me the best of both worlds, from classic to current technology. Yes, I own several other guns that are more capable and that I often carry, but this one gets most of the workload due to caliber, size, and features, making it a very shootable gun with a high degree of accuracy and less recoil. And did I mention it’s a 1911?”

Chuck Haggard
Organization: Agile Training and Consulting / Jackson County Sheriff’s Office
Job title: Owner / part-time deputy
Service Background: Topeka, Kansas, PD, Lieutenant/Staff Sergeant Kansas Army National Guard
CCW pistol: S&W 642
Modifications: Trigger work and chamber chamfer by Danny Hubert of Topeka, Kansas. Crimson Trace 305 laser grip, Cerakote flat-black coated to tone down visibility, orange paint on front sight using Birchwood-Casey paint pen specifically made for gun use.
Holster: Uncle Mike’s pocket holster, ankle rig. Dark Star gear AIWB
Position of CCW holster: Depending on what I’m wearing or doing, gun may be pocket carried on weak side, ankle carry, AIWB or in the coat pocket in extreme cold weather.


“My 642 is set up the way that it is with a trigger job, to improve my ability to hit with the snub at distance, especially one handed. Flat black coating to reduce visibility of the gun and to improve the sight picture (rear sight becomes blacked out). Crimson Trace laser grip to give sighting options in case I am down and shooting from an odd position where I can’t get behind the sights. Orange paint on the front sight to improve visibility of the sights and make fast and accurate hits possible. Chamfering on the chambers to facilitate speed of reloads under stress.”

For the rest of this article, subscribe here: Concealment 2

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