Guns & Patriots

A Perfect Concealed Carry Gun and Holster Package

There is no perfect concealed carry gun or holster. Everything is a trade off and what works well for one person may not work well for another. In choosing the right concealed carry gun and holster combination for your specific circumstances, you need to consider your mission, your capabilities, and your limitations.

Your mission

Your mission is your purpose for carrying a concealed handgun. If you are not carrying on duty as a law enforcement officer or military operator, your mission is personal defense. Now you have to consider your risk profile. Do you live in or are you traveling through a high crime area? Are you someone whom violent criminal predators might view as easy prey? What kinds of predators are you likely to encounter? Recognize that whatever your risk profile, violent crime can occur anywhere, and anyone can be targeted for victimization—so be prepared.

Your capabilities

Your capabilities include your particular skill sets as well as your legal rights and privileges. So, how well trained are you and what is your level of physical fitness? Recognize that you should be thoroughly familiar with whichever gun you choose to carry, and comfortable handling and shooting that gun under stress. Also, recognize that as a civilian, you have the right to employ deadly force as a last resort against an assailant if you truly believe, at the time that the assailant is confronting you, that the assailant is putting you, or someone else under the mantle of your protection, under an imminent and unavoidable threat of death or grave bodily harm. Self defense is a right. The Second Amendment doesn’t give us that right, it simply affirms it.

Your limitations

Your limitations include what you cannot do as well as what you should not do. Your concealed carry permit rights and privileges do not include police powers. You should focus on staying safe and keeping those under the mantle of your protection safe. This reasonable and legal mission is best served if you keep a low profile, and this is best accomplished by bearing yourself in a confident and unassuming manner and concealing your personal defense weapons well. However, effective concealed carry, which means carrying your pieces well hidden in plain sight, demands that you choose the right equipment (read as guns and holsters) and clothing for you. Proper equipment and clothing selection must take into account your strengths, weaknesses, body type, and the environment in which you are operating.

A good gun needs a good holster

How many people do you know that carry a gun that cost them more than $500. in a holster that cost them less than $40? Does this make good sense? Recognize that you usually get what you pay for.

The purpose of a holster is to provide a secure well concealed place to safely carry your piece. The holster should be comfortable and effectively enclose and protect your carry gun’s trigger guard to prevent unwanted objects from touching the trigger. A good concealment gun holster allows rapid and unimpeded access to your gun so you can present it smoothly and quickly if you should need to, and when it is time to do so, return it to its holster safely. On the other hand, such a holster provides good gun retention so you can move about without worrying about losing your gun.

In my experience, an inside the waist band or “IWB” gun holster made of high quality leather fits the bill. In terms of choice of carry gun, the thinner and lighter the gun, the easier it is to conceal and the more comfortable it is to carry. In addition, the handgun’s ergonomics are important. Stubby, top heavy, and blocky guns tend to be less comfortable to carry and harder to conceal.

I have always found 1911s easier to carry all day, especially inside the waist band, than most other guns. My favorite 1911s are Kimber’s line of light weight custom pistols due to their ease of carry, excellent reliability, shootability, accuracy, and aesthetic beauty. In an IWB holster, such as Kramer Handgun Leather’s ( horsehide IWB #3, a light weight 1911 Government Model, such as a Kimber Super Carry Custom or Custom CDP II, rides very comfortably and is very comforting to have on.

If I prefer to carry a double action only, or DAO, pistol, I often turn to a Kahr. Kahr’s KP and CW line of polymer frame pistols, such as their P9 and CW9, are light weight, thin, ergonomic, reliable, aesthetically pleasing, concealable, and eminently shootable. 

Kramer Gun Leather’s IWB #3 fulfill all of my requirements for a perfect concealed carry gun holster for these and other carry guns. The Kramer IWB #3 is comfortable, efficient, conceals well, and is built like a truck—it will last forever. The rig allows for a smooth and rapid gun presentation as well as secure and smooth re-holstering. Even a Glock 17, Glock 22, or a thicker .45 caliber Glock 21 or Glock 30, ride securely and comfortably in a Kramer IWB #3. 

Kahr Arms.
Kramer Handgun Leather.

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  • barbiecakes


  • FreeManinAmerica

    There are some truly wonderful spring clips that attach to receivers or under grips, eliminating the need for the holster. Even lighter, and even less profile.

  • Jerry Cook

    Money spent on good leather is like that spent on good optics – never wasted and appreciated for a long, long time. The Kramer #3 is nice, and mine has served me well, but my Mitch Rosen ARG gets my nod for the finest holster I’ve ever purchased. To minimize the initial “fit” issues, spring for their Leather Lightening with your new holster.

  • David Schimelpfenig

    I love the smart carry holster, full size M&P with an extra mag. It’s comfortable all day long.

  • drkennethnoisewater

    I like the Crossbreed Super Deluxe and Kahr K9, myself. K9 is a bit bigger than their tiny pistols, but its weight and feel are good for me. MK9 is also a pretty sweet little heater, and that thing is tiny (PM9 sized). I’d probably go for a Glock 26 for an ankle gun though, just so I could use it with a 33rd mag on the range ;)

  • Chuck Haggard

    My choice; a Glock 19 in the original CCW rig for guys who seriously carry guns, the Milt Sparks Summer Special.

  • ELawrence

    THE ‘CLIP SYSTEM’, metal clips attached to a gun for ultra-slim profile IWB carry, while both unorthodox and hard to get used to, really does make a huge difference.

    I use these clips with my Luger LCR and WALTHER PPS – and it renders them all but invisible even with shorts and T-Shirt. No matter how good a leather holster is, they add a deal of bulk. The Luger LCR with a clip is almost too good to be true insofar as you can tuck it almost anywhere and it cannot be spotted without really close inspection – couple that with the excellent COR BON .380 Ammo and it’s a powerful weapon in a tiny form factor – with both muzzle energy and velocity exceeding certain 1980′s NYPD Service Revolvers (the old ‘bounce off the windshield’ stories)

  • One Time Guy

    Is this an AD???
    Cannot even wear a leather strap watch as my sweat eats them…synthetic will last longer and is less expensive…as for carry they make small editions of the finest weapons around from a barely adequate 38. and up…they even cost less than regular size these days…
    Use a search engine NOT this ad-article…

  • One Time Guy

    You must not sweat EATS leather…even a 2.5 belt will not last six months…synthetic all the way…or a metal clip.

  • mickey_meador

    For the 2 pistols I EDC (Glock 23 & Sig P938) I have found the best IWB holsters are N8 Squared Tactical, Remora with sweat shield, and a CrossBreed style holster from AlienGear Holsters. The AlienGear is sturdier and a lot less expensive than CrossBreed.

  • Don Meaker

    The nice thing about revolvers is they carry their ammunition lower than the grip. That means they tend to flop around less.

  • Don Meaker

    High velocity ammunition expands quickly, and, for a .380 Corbon round, doesn’t penetrate as far. The important bits are toward the back. If you have a low energy round, get one that doesn’t expand. Remember kids,
    (1) Hit the target
    (2) with a bullet that penetrates to the vital organs in the back
    (3) all things being equal, a round that does that is more effective if it is bigger.