Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Search for the "Perfect Packin' Rig" settles on a .45 and a .44 --Duh!

John Taffin is always writing about his lifelong search for the Perfect Packin' Pistol. Well I'll be satisfied when I find the Perfect Packin' Rig. And I think I've come pretty close if not already there.

My pretty much constant companion since I started carrying double for working at the gun shop has been a Galco small-of-back holster that I wear more or less over my right hip pocket. It usually has a revolver in it but will also do for small semi-autos up to 3.5" barrels. But that's a bit much for weight and tends to drag my britches south a bit too far. For an small auto it works best with my subcompact Kel-Tec PF9. So usually it's a small-frame revolver, J-frame-size .38, or Charter Arms .327 Magnum or .44, that rides in the Galco SOB for my right hand.

Most of the time lately it's been my Charter Arms Bulldog .44 Special 5-shot snubby. I'm prejudiced. If I'm gonna carry a 5-shot snubby, I'd rather have a .44 than a 38 or even a .327 Magnum. Bigger is better.

But the real question has been about the left side. I've tried a wide variety of different holsters and types, leather, kydex and canvas, belt slides, paddles and snap-ons by Galco, DeSantis, Bianchi, Blackhawk, BladeTech and Goodrich & Gould. I've also tried shoulder rigs by Galco, Bianchi and Blackhawk.

And in addition to that I've tried a variety of different handguns, revolvers usually in K-frame size but some J-frames too, and semi-autos from subcompact to compact to full-size.

The revolvers include S&W 65 and Taurus 65, both .357 Magnum, Charter .38, .327 Magnum and .44, and Ruger LCR .38. The semi-autos include Steyr M9A1, Sig Sauer P229 .357 Sig and P220 full-size and compact .45 ACP, Para-Ord P12-45, and last but certainly not least, my Glock 29 10mm subcompact.

Out of these I have settled on the Sig P220 Compact in a DeSantis Mini Slide. Fits better and wears better all day than another combination I have tried.

I'm sorta ambiguous instead of ambidextrous, being strong side right, dominant eye left, so I like the option of being able to grab with either hand, should the occasion arise. I shoot a little better left-handed than right but I'm pretty comfortable shooting with either hand. I just have to line the pistol up with my left eye.

And I also gotta add I like the quiet draw and no retention device of leather holsters. I hate that snick sound kydex makes on the draw and unless I wear the same kind of active retention holster all the time, I might get caught fumbling with a release at a critical moment.

And none of the active retention holsters I've tried wear as well as the DeSantis Mini Slide.

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