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  • Practical experience with concealed carry?

    I know there are a lot of gun owners here, so I wanted to solicit your opinions. My wife and I have been thinking about a concealed carry permit for some time, but have never actually followed through on it. After an incident that happened to my wife last night, I think we're now very seriously considering it.

    Does anyone have any practical experience with carrying a concealed weapon, and can you make a recommendation on a good, reliable, and effective weapon to carry? We live in Virginia and both have clean criminal backgrounds. I pray that we're never in a situation where we'll have to shoot someone, but we want to be able to protect ourselves if a life-or-death situation arises again.

    Thanks for your input!!
    "No bastard ever won a war by dying for his country.
    He won it by making the other poor dumb bastard die for his country."

    - Attributed to General George Patton, Jr.

  • #2
    Re: Practical experience with concealed carry?

    Go to a gunsmith (not a sports store or a pawn shop), bring your wife, explain your situation, and he will find a couple weapons that will fit your needs.

    You will take a basic traning course (NRA offers them, and the certification may be handy/required for a permit in your region), and you will practice your shooting on a regular basis. If you aren't able to handle the weapon, you will not be able to defend yourself with it, and you run the risk of doing a very bad thing accidentally.

    Don't overlook ammunition, either. For a weapon to be used in your home, they make special rounds designed to not penetrate walls. Hollow-point is good if you expect to need to use your weapon in public, since the bullet will want to stop inside the person it hits. If penetration is useful, then you would likely prefer ball.

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    • #3
      Re: Practical experience with concealed carry?

      If your wife is going to get a gun make sure she picks it out and she holds it. That way its her gun and she knows how to use it.

      But do go to a local shop and let them know what you are looking for. Personally something in a .40sw caliber is a good stopping round and you can easily find a handgun small enough for carry.

      Also do a search of the TG site and you will find atleast 2 other threads pertaining to this issue.


      http://www.carryconcealed.net/legal/...state-laws.php
      that sounds like a good idea trooper.
      -Vulcan

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Practical experience with concealed carry?

        If you don't already have pistols, absolutely spend a few days at the local range renting every handgun that looks even slightly interesting. You might be surprised that your wife prefers a .45 1911, while you like a 9mm Glock. That said, I think that 9mm/.38 special is as small as you should go if you want to trust your life to a gun.

        As far as the concealed carry goes, it's just something that you have to get used to. It will be very uncomfortable at first. I made myself a little promise when I first started carrying, that I would go nowhere for an entire year without my gun. I had heard of cops that left their gun at home when they ran down to the corner 7-Eleven and wished that they hadn't. For the first year, at least, I was going to make sure that didn't happen to me. After the first year, I figured I'd be a better judge of when and where to take it. Well, 5 years later, I still take it almost everywhere. I didn't take it to the waterpark a few weeks back, and I've left it at home a couple times when I went to other aquatic attractions, I've left it at home once when I went to Six Flags, but I won't do that again. I think that as long as you conform to the laws that govern your concealed carry, the rest is just common sense and getting comfortable with it...
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        • #5
          Re: Practical experience with concealed carry?

          Aquatic attractions...

          "SeaWorld takes an entirely different approach: That company supports the rights of its employees or visitors to transport legal firearms in their cars, "and we have for some time," spokeswoman Becca Bides said."

          That's a bit of the fall-out from the argument over whether or not it is legal to carry in a parking lot, here in Florida, with Disney World refuting the law and the recent judgment regarding the right to keep a concealed carry in your car in the parking lot as an employee of the facility. Apparently our water parks like freedom more than the Disney socialists. Of course, Disney is, like the vatican, its own little mini-country. It can get away with pretty much whatever it likes.

          /Disney can enjoy its fail.
          //Might go to Sea World or Busch Gardens this year with a visiting relative.
          ///Dolphins pwn.

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          • #6
            Re: Practical experience with concealed carry?

            I should clarify - my wife has a lot of experience with firearms. Way more than I do, in fact. She's very familiar with the operation of all manners of pistols, shotguns and rifles. I was just curious if anyone had any specific recommendations, and whether anyone has been in the unfortunate situation where they have have to use their firearm for self-defense.
            "No bastard ever won a war by dying for his country.
            He won it by making the other poor dumb bastard die for his country."

            - Attributed to General George Patton, Jr.

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Practical experience with concealed carry?

              I'd be thinking that a 32 with hollows should be fine, most 32s are somewhat small and will still be enough to make a criminal or someone think twice about what they're about to do/in the process of doing.
              "A Veteran is someone who , at one point in their life, wrote a blank check made payable to
              'The United states of America' for an amount of 'upto and including my life'. That is honor, and there are way to many people in this country who no longer understand it."-Author Unknown

              "I got kicked out of barnes and noble once for moving all the bibles into the fiction section" -Any.

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              • #8
                Re: Practical experience with concealed carry?

                Originally posted by Evo<^|SiNz|^> View Post
                ...and whether anyone has been in the unfortunate situation where they have have to use their firearm for self-defense.
                Ah, no, thank goodness. But I highly recommend the book In the Gravest Extreme by Massad Ayoob. It's not often that you'll find a gunwriter covering what happens AFTER you pull the trigger. This book goes there.

                Originally posted by Fenian420 View Post
                I'd be thinking that a 32 with hollows should be fine, most 32s are somewhat small and will still be enough to make a criminal or someone think twice about what they're about to do/in the process of doing.
                It's opinion, but I think you'd be wrong. Many, many tests agree with me. Nobody carries a handgun to make a criminal think twice. You carry it to make sure you're absolutely able to stop a criminal.
                Become a supporting member!
                Buy a Tactical Duck!
                Take the world's smallest political quiz! "I was touched by His Noodly Appendage."
                TacticalGamer TX LAN/BBQ Veteran:

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                • #9
                  Re: Practical experience with concealed carry?

                  Ah well yea but I meant more along the lines of pointing it at the criminal to ward them off, why shoot someone if you don't have to unless the persons a rapist or something like that, You wouldnt shoot a thief that simply took 2-3 dollars from you when you were about to hand it to someone.
                  "A Veteran is someone who , at one point in their life, wrote a blank check made payable to
                  'The United states of America' for an amount of 'upto and including my life'. That is honor, and there are way to many people in this country who no longer understand it."-Author Unknown

                  "I got kicked out of barnes and noble once for moving all the bibles into the fiction section" -Any.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Practical experience with concealed carry?

                    Originally posted by Fenian420 View Post
                    Ah well yea but I meant more along the lines of pointing it at the criminal to ward them off, why shoot someone if you don't have to unless the persons a rapist or something like that, You wouldnt shoot a thief that simply took 2-3 dollars from you when you were about to hand it to someone.
                    Well, if you just want to try to scare someone, there are MUCH cheaper ways to do so. Me? If simply pointing something at a criminal doesn't work, I want to be able to stop the criminal. When a thief that just stole a couple bucks from you starts advancing toward you with murder in his eyes, the crime is no longer theft, it's assault and you had better be able to defend yourself. Nobody is going to defend a few bucks by shooting someone. You could go to jail if you even POINT a gun at someone if all they've done is snatched a few bucks. C'mon, man, think.
                    Become a supporting member!
                    Buy a Tactical Duck!
                    Take the world's smallest political quiz! "I was touched by His Noodly Appendage."
                    TacticalGamer TX LAN/BBQ Veteran:

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                    • #11
                      Re: Practical experience with concealed carry?

                      If you point your gun its your last option so be ready to use it. Anymore a .32cal handgun just isnt recommended anymore. It lacks true stopping power if the bag guy is wearing heavy cloths. Plus there arent to many handguns that use the .32caliber bullet.

                      Thats one reason to either go with a 9mm or a .40caliber. With 9mm you get high capacity plus stopping power. With .40 you get less round but will drop whatever you are shooting a lot quicker.

                      This is one reasono i bought a .357. If i pull my weapon i do intend to use it. Once that gun is drawn you just escalated that situation to an entirely different plain.
                      that sounds like a good idea trooper.
                      -Vulcan

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Practical experience with concealed carry?

                        Originally posted by Fenian420 View Post
                        Ah well yea but I meant more along the lines of pointing it at the criminal to ward them off, why shoot someone if you don't have to unless the persons a rapist or something like that, You wouldnt shoot a thief that simply took 2-3 dollars from you when you were about to hand it to someone.
                        My wife was put in a situation this weekend where she was robbed and her friend was being pistol whipped by the perp. She thought they were both going to be shot and she had no means of defending herself. This was a situation where she felt, if she had the option, she would have used lethal force to save their lives (and pointing or waving a gun at a crazed person who also has a gun won't intimidate, it will infuriate).

                        Fortunately, neither my wife or her friend were shot, but neither of them thought they were going to survive the encounter at the time either.
                        "No bastard ever won a war by dying for his country.
                        He won it by making the other poor dumb bastard die for his country."

                        - Attributed to General George Patton, Jr.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Practical experience with concealed carry?

                          Originally posted by Fenian420 View Post
                          Ah well yea but I meant more along the lines of pointing it at the criminal to ward them off, why shoot someone if you don't have to unless the persons a rapist or something like that, You wouldnt shoot a thief that simply took 2-3 dollars from you when you were about to hand it to someone.
                          If you want to scare someone, buy a blank gun. They sell some nice PPK blank guns that you can order online and have it shipped right to your house. Barrel is plugged though. But if you want to have something that you'll depend on to save your life or someone else's, you don't want something thats not going to get the job done. Many a time people have been shot in the face or chest with a .22 and got right back up and killed the person who shot them. If someone's threatening your life with a weapon, even over 2 dollars, you put them down. Never pull a gun out unless you intend to use it. No, I wouldn't shoot someone who took 2 or 3 dollars from me.. but thats different from robbing me with a knife or pipe or gun.

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                          • #14
                            Re: Practical experience with concealed carry?

                            I don't have a CWP, and I'm not a handgun expert. But I am an Internet-forum expert. And I don't think an open forum will provide a whole lot of useful information as the discussion will inevitably get derailed. Even on the weapon-centric forums you have to weed out the politicians, the survivalists, and the posers. Guns attract a lot of opinions.

                            Go to a shooting store, hold some guns, talk to the people there. They've met lots of others in very similar situations. Renting a few guns and learning the parts and controls of a handgun is a good idea.

                            You may want to spend some evenings browsing http://www.corneredcat.com/ - (Yes, it's very pink, but there's some good info there. Even for guys.)

                            Also
                            http://www.thehighroad.org/
                            http://thefiringline.com/forums/
                            http://www.ar15.com/forums/

                            Good luck

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Practical experience with concealed carry?

                              Originally posted by mentholated View Post
                              If you want to scare someone, buy a blank gun. They sell some nice PPK blank guns that you can order online and have it shipped right to your house. Barrel is plugged though. But if you want to have something that you'll depend on to save your life or someone else's, you don't want something thats not going to get the job done. Many a time people have been shot in the face or chest with a .22 and got right back up and killed the person who shot them. If someone's threatening your life with a weapon, even over 2 dollars, you put them down. Never pull a gun out unless you intend to use it. No, I wouldn't shoot someone who took 2 or 3 dollars from me.. but thats different from robbing me with a knife or pipe or gun.
                              Never pull a gun unless you are willing to use it.
                              "No bastard ever won a war by dying for his country.
                              He won it by making the other poor dumb bastard die for his country."

                              - Attributed to General George Patton, Jr.

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