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Thread: little clarification on open carry

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    just a quick question for those with a little more insight to this kind of stuff, i have an iwb holster, where pretty much only the handle to my steyr remains sticking out from my pants. if i were to go to a restaraunt while cc'ing and took off my coat to oc, would it still be considered oc, even with that much of the firearm still concealed? i was always under the impression that the firearm had to be fully visible to be considered "open", but thought i might have seen or heard otherwise, in this particular kind of case, on here. thanks for you help.

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    I remember hearing something along the lines of it's considered concealed when the "true nature" of the weapon is hidden, or something like that. So I'm thinking that if people don't know for sure if it's a gun or not thats sticking out of your pants, then it can be considered concealed.

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    darrel_h wrote:
    just a quick question for those with a little more insight to this kind of stuff, i have an iwb holster, where pretty much only the handle to my steyr remains sticking out from my pants. if i were to go to a restaraunt while cc'ing and took off my coat to oc, would it still be considered oc, even with that much of the firearm still concealed? i was always under the impression that the firearm had to be fully visible to be considered "open", but thought i might have seen or heard otherwise, in this particular kind of case, on here. thanks for you help.
    Or better yet, as I've suggested many times on this forum, ignore the law and don't do anything differently. This portion of VA's concealed carry is not only asinine, it is also unenforceable. No restaurant that I know of is going to frisk patrons and none of them have metal detectors. Conceal your weapon and go about your business.

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    Founder's Club Member - Moderator longwatch's Avatar
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    Until you have to use your weapon and your otherwise justifiable shoot becomes tainted because you were breaking the law. If you are going to break the law why get a permit in the first place? You could save yourself $50 and carry illegally. Bottom line breaking the law is never a good idea.
    Tattedupboy you should know better than to suggest illegal activity on this board.

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    Regular Member zoom6zoom's Avatar
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    I use the same IWB holster for CC and for OC. The same amount of my Sig is visible as if I were to use an OWB holster.


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    18.2-308(A)

    a weapon shall be deemed to be hidden from common observation when it is observable but is of such deceptive appearance as to disguise the weapon's true nature.

    With the grip showing can someone tell it's a gun?, I'd guess probably so. Is part of the holster visible too.
    "The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants." - Thomas Jefferson

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    Founder's Club Member - Moderator longwatch's Avatar
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    I'm not positive but I thought the general rule from case law was that it needs to be visible from 3 sides, say front, right side and rear.

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    tattedupboy wrote:
    Or better yet, as I've suggested many times on this forum, ignore the law and don't do anything differently. This portion of VA's concealed carry is not only asinine, it is also unenforceable. No restaurant that I know of is going to frisk patrons and none of them have metal detectors. Conceal your weapon and go about your business.
    I agree with longwatch on this one. darrel_h asked a legitimate question because he wants to follow the law, and your answer is that it's just a stupid law so don't even worry about it? And how can you say it's unenforceable? It's a law and the police can enforce it.

    Braggingabout how you like to suggest illegal activityon OCDOis not very respectable. If that's your position, then this is probably not the forum for you.

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    Yes, these forums are definitely no place for discussion of illegal activiy. It's hard enough knowing how to NOT break the law :P. And I'm sure that the forums are being skimmed and scanned by some LEA anyways.

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    Founder's Club Member - Moderator longwatch's Avatar
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    Not only LEOs, lawmakers, media, and anti gunners come into boards like ours. Keep that in mind and post accordingly. What we say can be used against us and at least one bill has been drawn up in reaction to bad information posted on PDO.

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    I think you're safe using an IWB holster. There aren't many things you can stick down the strong side of your pants that can be mistaken for the butt of a gun. That square butt has a very distinctive look, and most people that see it, know what it is. In my opinion, as long as you make no attempt to conceal it, by say, tying a sweater around your waist to have only an itty bitty tip of the butt exposed trying to pass it off as a blackberry until questioned, and use the "but the gun IS exposed... see?" excuse, than you should be fine. Honestly, if you feel uncomfortable about it, I'd write to the local police dept. and ask if carrying your gun in an IWB holster constitutes as "hiding the gun's true nature from common observation". I say write because hopefully, you'd get a response back in letter form. If the response says you're fine carrying IWB, I'd keep it in the glove compartment of my car. That way if something were to arise about concealing it's true nature, it'll be your "get out of jail free" card, so to speak.


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    thanks everyone for your replies. well, everyone but tattedupboy. i agree with everyone else on his repsonse. and like longwatch said, if you do that and something goes down, there goes the neighborhood. it would just add fuel to the fire. but anyways, to give you a little more clarification on my rig, it is actually really concealed. in response to longwatch, you could technically see 3 sides.........of the handle. the only part of the holster you can see is the metal clip that goes over the belt. i guess this one will have to be better judgement call, seeing as how va law is a little grey in this area. i try to oc most of the time anyways, but every now and again i'll conceal for old times sake. plus, using the iwb holster is so much easier than my oc holster. one of these days i'll try to get a pick of the rig and maybe that'll help you out. again, thanks for the feedback, much appreciated.

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    Not only does the guy from Indiana not respect the law, he probably doesn't appreciate that Virginia concealed carry law is about the best/most-liberal out there..

    I've never had an issue carrying my Glock 26, it's so small that most people don't notice it, as it's the size ofa large PDA..

    If I ever encounter a restaurant that has a problem with it, I'll just leave -- Vote with your dollars.

    Bad advice -- Just bad advise..

    Before you think to yourself, "I'm 100% concealed, no one will notice", police do notice sometimes, and then it's going to become an expensive problem to solve.

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    Hey Derrel_h, just to satisfy my interest, can you please tell me who makes your holster and what model? I'm just curious.

    would you say it was like this?


    or would you say it was like this?

    if it's the first one, i don't think you'll have a problem. if it's the latter, well you might if LEO wanted to push it.

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    psmartin wrote:
    Not only does the guy from Indiana not respect the law, he probably doesn't appreciate that Virginia concealed carry law is about the best/most-liberal out there..

    I've never had an issue carrying my Glock 26, it's so small that most people don't notice it, as it's the size ofa large PDA..

    If I ever encounter a restaurant that has a problem with it, I'll just leave -- Vote with your dollars.

    Bad advice -- Just bad advise..

    Before you think to yourself, "I'm 100% concealed, no one will notice", police do notice sometimes, and then it's going to become an expensive problem to solve.
    I don't know his story, but when I was younger, I was denied a carry permit even though I had been "jumped" twice - once included hospital trip with several stitches (many inside my mouth that I can still feel the scaring). My uncle was messing with someone's wife and they thought picking on me would stop it.

    I carried at that point - I was in fear of my life - and it did stop the harrassment when they learned I was going to defend myself.

    With current laws, I do not see a needto carry illegallyin VA. After saying that, I would carry again, no matter what, if I needed to like I did then.

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    razorblade, it is definitely like the second one. it is a blackhawk (i believe) custom leather. pretty much the same sit as the 2nd one in your pics. i agree it would probably be up to the leo present, if they wanted to push it. especially since i carry at my 4 - 5 o'clock position, so when i'm sitting you really wouldn't be able to see it at all.

    on a side note, i've thought about getting a shoulder hoslter, but still am not sure. i don't have a large frame so when i'm oc'ing and want to wear a jacket or something, or even a shirt over it, it's a little harder to conceal because the jacket/shirt always seem to ride up. does anyone have any opionion about good shoulder holsters, or even pro's and con's? thanks.

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    I wore a leather holster once, I personally didn't like it. I kept fighting the urge to take it off. The one I had (forgot the name) was poorly made, so that may have something to do with it. The problem with shoulder holsters comes from safety and tactical perspectives. The safety perspective is that if you've got a holster that has the grip positioned horizontally, you run the risk of flagging whomever is behind you with the muzzle of your gun.

    Also make sure you keep your finger out of the trigger guard until you clear that holster (I'm sure you already know that, but it does bear repeating).

    However, if you find a holster that holds the grip vertically, such as this one from Galco
    you're fine. Unfortunantly, this brings up the Tactical perspective. Having to cross your body to draw your weapon will put you in a compromising position if you are confronted at a distance of 5 feet or less. If you telegraph your draw, you're basically telling your aggressor what your intentions are. The lethality of your gun extends from the end of your muzzle, to about 50 yards. If your aggressor keeps behind your muzzle, he's fine. Typically, he'll react when you cross your body. Once he reacts, he'll close the gap, make contact with your drawing arm, and prevent you from removing the gun from the holster. If his other hand is free, he can access a knife. This is opposed to the more traditional strong side holster where even if the aggressor closes the gap and traps your arm, you can still pull your strong side away and "rock" the gun into firing position (a' la' shooting from the hip).


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    Just wanted to resurrect this thread since I haven't heard any new threads on it (searched and only found this one) and I'm thinking about open carrying with an IWB (crossbreed supertuck) in the future... My blackhawk serpa w/shoulder rig comes tomorrow, and since it's cold out, I'll probably start doing that since I wear a long petticoat and it's not possible to reach my strong or weak waist level without unbuttoning my jacket, but my weak armpit is easily reached. Plus, when I get to a restaurant/bar, I could always remove my jacket at the door and be obviously open carrying with a semi-professional looking setup. Any new comments/opinions since last Nov?
    -Unrequited

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