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Thread: How is open carry defined?

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    If I do open carry, I want to do so in the lest obnoxious way possible. I would prefer for no one to notice my piece unless they give me more than a passing glance. Just how much of the pistol has to be visible for it to count as open carry? Also, what type of holster would be preferable for this type of nearly concealed carry?

    PS: Do I even need a holster? Is tucking my pistol in my belt enough?

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    gmreplay wrote:
    PS: Do I even need a holster? Is tucking my pistol in my belt enough?
    Until you get this question firmly settled in your mind, please don't open carry.

    The answer: YES, you need a holster! You need it for the physical security of the gun, you need it for your own comfort, and you need it for safety (a proper holster covers all the operating controls of the gun, preventing discharge - think "Plaxico Burress").

    Thugs and criminals stick guns in their waistbands. If you're concerned with appearances, you do not want to look like a thug or criminal.



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    I would presume as much, but the two ladies on the far right of the picture at the top left of this forum appear to be carrying without a holster. I figured it was worth checking on.

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    They're using inside-the-waistband (IWB) holsters. You can see the black belt loop/clip on the front of their pants.

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    Regular Member Alexcabbie's Avatar
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    The Doublemint Twins are quite obviously carrying in "inside the waistband" holsters and if I were not old enough to be their father I would say it makes them look HOT.

    (you can tell the IWB holster from the clip extending over the jeans).

    As to open carry, here in Virginia there is a sort of consensus that the weapon must be visible from three sides.

    BTW what do you mean "least obnoxious"?? I notice you just joined today and have made 4 postings. Carrying a firearm is no more "obnoxious" than carrying a cell phone. Also, "If I do open carry..." Hmmmmm.

    Well, I suppose that if one carried a S&W .500 Magnum in a cross-draw holster with double-crossed bandoliers of ammo and a sombrero and a handlebar moustache, with boots and spurs; and stomped into a soda fountain and brusquely ordered a root beer "IN A DIRTY GLASS!!" that might be seen as a little bit obnoxious; but most likely someone who did that would be laughed at.

    Me, I commonly OC a Walther P.38 in a modified Beretta M92 holster. Nothing fancy, just on my hip; and most folks dont even give it a second glance.

    What I personally find obnoxious is antigun trolls coming onto this forum and trying to stir up trouble. What I like about this forum is that after having been given a chance to get their licks in, they usually get banned. So let us hope that does not describe your intentions.

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    BTW what do you mean "least obnoxious"?? I notice you just joined today and have made 4 postings. Carrying a firearm is no more "obnoxious" than carrying a cell phone. Also, "If I do open carry..." Hmmmmm.
    Dear God, how paranoid must you be to think someone who has not yet carried openly and who makes four posts in a day (Oh dear!) must be a secret enemy agent come to get you?

    By "least obnoxious" I mean that I would prefer to carry openly in the least visible way possible such that I do not appear to be flaunting my weapon. Someone walking down the street with military/police style leg holster seems to be inviting criticism and police attention.

    What I personally find obnoxious is antigun trolls coming onto this forum and trying to stir up trouble. What I like about this forum is that after having been given a chance to get their licks in, they usually get banned. So let us hope that does not describe your intentions.
    I certainly hope this isn't how you greet all of your guests.

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    Least obnoxious?

    AS is beauty, "obnoxious" is in the eye of the beholder.

    What one person would consider "obnoxious", another would not.

    Open carry is not a fashion contest.

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    Alexcabbie wrote:
    As to open carry, here in Virginia there is a sort of consensus that the weapon must be visible from three sides.
    I disagree. There is nothing in the VAC stating that it has to be visible from three sides. I have read some posts on here where police have said this, but its not law, same as notifying during a traffic stop.

    The term "Virginia tuck" or "Virginia carry" come to mind. Why would it matter where the IWB holster is located on your belt?

    As for a consensus, as long as its not "hidden from common observation" its OC.

    For the OP: How you carry is up to you and how the Michigan law is worded regarding "concealed". As others have said, I would highly suggest using a good holster. Read up on your state and local laws and know them well, it will help your confidence.

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    In Virginia, the rule is "hidden from common observation". If it passes this test, it is considered to be concealed. If it is visible and identifiable as a firearm, it is considered to be carried in the open.

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    gmreplay wrote:
    By "least obnoxious" I mean that I would prefer to carry openly in the least visible way possible such that I do not appear to be flaunting my weapon.
    Choose a holster which is comfortabe, secure and compliments your wardrobe. A leather pancake style which holds your handgun close to your body and has a thumb break is always a good bet.

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    Interceptor_Knight wrote:
    gmreplay wrote:
    By "least obnoxious" I mean that I would prefer to carry openly in the least visible way possible such that I do not appear to be flaunting my weapon.
    *Choose a holster which is comfortabe, secure and compliments your wardrobe.* A leather pancake style which holds your handgun close to your body and has a thumb break is always a good bet.* *
    Thank you kindly. That's precisely the sort of information I was looking for.

    I spent some time thinking about open carrying last night and realized that my lack of a CCW means that it would be quite difficult for me to carry in areas where I would like to, such as while getting gas. I'll probably get a CCW once I decide where I will be going for graduate school. With that in mind, do all types of holsters work equally well for open carry and concealed carry? I'd rather not buy a holster appropriate for open carry only to render it obsolete in a few months by getting a CCW.

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    gmreplay wrote:
    Interceptor_Knight wrote:
    gmreplay wrote:
    By "least obnoxious" I mean that I would prefer to carry openly in the least visible way possible such that I do not appear to be flaunting my weapon.
    Choose a holster which is comfortabe, secure and compliments your wardrobe. A leather pancake style which holds your handgun close to your body and has a thumb break is always a good bet.
    Thank you kindly. That's precisely the sort of information I was looking for.

    I spent some time thinking about open carrying last night and realized that my lack of a CCW means that it would be quite difficult for me to carry in areas where I would like to, such as while getting gas. I'll probably get a CCW once I decide where I will be going for graduate school. With that in mind, do all types of holsters work equally well for open carry and concealed carry? I'd rather not buy a holster appropriate for open carry only to render it obsolete in a few months by getting a CCW
    What kind of gun?

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    gmreplay wrote:
    do all types of holsters work equally well for open carry and concealed carry? I'd rather not buy a holster appropriate for open carry only to render it obsolete in a few months by getting a CCW.
    I got to say no to your question, For an O-C holster, you will want something with active retention. Remember this gun is out in the open, during a slip & fall you would want the gun to stay in it's holster and not bounce away from you and have someone grab it. There is also scenarioa where someone might be stupid enough to try and grab the gun out of your holster too. (most stories I have read, actuallyinvolved cop's trying to grab a gun out of someones holster)

    I remember hearing a story about a guy going into a public restroom to drop of the browns at the superbowl, his gun fell ot of the holster and fired when it hit the floor (the gun is at fault, along with the holster and owner for that event happening)

    For a concealable holster, you want it to be easy to get out, because you are already fumbling with getting around clothing that is in the way.

    I still have a fabric "Uncle Mikes" holster that I did use for a concealment, that I know use for open-carry with the addition of a belt. and I only use it for my revolver when i'm not around crowded areas.

    Holsters are inexpensive enough where you should be able to have multiple styles to fit each individual need.



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    I've currently got a Beretta 96, but I've never been particularly fond of the feel of the gun, and my accuracy is just north of the broad side of a barn. I've shot well with a rented glock and CZ 75. I intended on selling the 96 to a buddy and getting a 75 instead, but having read that story about the poor guy shooting himself in the leg Plaxico Burris style with his CZ despite the safety being on makes me nervous about getting one.

    Holsters may run only 50-100 bucks, but I'm a college student who works part time. A full day of work makes me 70 bucks, so most holsters seem pretty far away. Your points on the retention/easy of access issue is well taken. I'll put some thought into the matter.

    Also, just a bit off topic, if a police officer tries to snatch your gun, what the hell do you do?

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    gmreplay wrote:
    Also, just a bit off topic, if a police officer tries to snatch your gun, what the hell do you do?
    Let him take it.......

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    gmreplay wrote:
    "...lack of a CCW means that it would be quite difficult for me to carry in areas where I would like to, such as while getting gas."
    ?????

    I think I misunderstand your line of thougt. I regularly OC "while getting gas," even inside the store. I'm not sure why a CCW would help unless you don't actually plan to OC. From your comments here, it would appear that you are leaning towards CC. I say "to each his own." I have mine as well and carry depending on the situation and if I can easily conceal. If I can't easily conceal, ie it's obvious I'm carrying, I may as well OC because everyone can tell anyway.

    I say make your mind and get comfortable with the fact that you can potentially save or end someone's life with your decisions.

    PS. Glad to have someone else thinking about protecting the sheep.

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    In Wisconsin the transition between legal vehicle transport and legal carry cannot be made entirely legally.

    The Fork in Wisconsin Gun Laws. Ch. 941.23 versus Ch. 167.31

    http://opencarry.mywowbb.com/view_to...highlight=fork

    http://www.vimeo.com/6115265

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    rmansu2 wrote:
    gmreplay wrote:
    "...lack of a CCW means that it would be quite difficult for me to carry in areas where I would like to, such as while getting gas."
    *?????

    I think I misunderstand your line of thougt. I regularly OC "while getting gas," even inside the store. I'm not sure why a CCW would help unless you don't actually plan to OC. From your comments here, it would appear that you are leaning towards CC. I say "to each his own." I have mine as well and carry depending on the situation and if I can easily conceal. If I can't easily conceal, ie it's obvious I'm carrying, I may as well OC because everyone can tell anyway.

    I say make your mind and get comfortable with the fact that you can potentially save or end someone's life with your decisions.

    PS. Glad to have someone else thinking about protecting the sheep.
    From my understanding of Michigan law I can't have a pistol on or near my person in the car. In fact, it must be in the trunk unloaded. That means that when I go to get gas I must open the trunk, load the pistol, place it in my holster, get gas (a 2-3 minute procedure), and then reverse the process. That seems one hell of a lot more complex than just already having the pistol on my person and getting the gas, which a CCW would permit me to do. Or have I misunderstood something?

    Frankly I used to be of a much less pro-gun mindset. I thought that if a robber ever came upon you a gun wouldn't do much good, as he already has the jump on you.

    Then I read numerous stories about people who have stopped criminals that were attacking others, or stories of massacres that could have been stopped if someone had a gun, and I changed my mind. I do indeed intend to be a sheep dog.

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    Gmreplay, you should post your questions in the Michigan forum. Michigan gun laws can get pretty complicated, and the folks in that forum know them pretty well. I would advise you to learn the laws well before you decide to openly carry without a CPL. Law enforcement will trip you up in a heartbeat if you're not armed with solid knowledge.

    As far as carrying "inconspicuously", I carry my .38 spl in a black leather holster designed for cc. It keeps the gun very close to my body, which makes it harder for the mythical "gun grab", and I don't very often get called out on it. Most people hardly notice when I carry my 1911 in my Serpa, and that's fairly obvious. When I carry my .38, it's almost as if I'm invisible...

    Check out the Michigan forum, you'll find what you need there.

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    gmreplay wrote:
    From my understanding of Michigan law I can't have a pistol on or near my person in the car. In fact, it must be in the trunk unloaded. That means that when I go to get gas I must open the trunk, load the pistol, place it in my holster, get gas (a 2-3 minute procedure), and then reverse the process. That seems one hell of a lot more complex than just already having the pistol on my person and getting the gas, which a CCW would permit me to do. Or have I misunderstood something?
    What you described is EXACTLY what we must do in WI as a practical matter. What I am working on is a transparent case so that I can store it on the rear shelf of my car and not be in violation of the letter of the law for both the concealed carry and safe transportation statutes. This effectively eliminates the "fork" which Doug is mentioning.

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    gmreplay - You would be well advised to get a concealed carry permit/license and study up on the sheepdog mindset, legal responsibilities/liabilities of being in an armed condition. Get the CC license, join US Concealed Carry Association , spend some time learning on that forum - before you launch into OC in Michigan. OC is at best an optional alternative to concealed carry.

    Under certain circumstances I believe OC is useful for a variety of reasons ranging from crime deterrence, self-defense, education, etc - where legal.....If you have to even ask the question about whether or not you should holster, you are not ready to OC . OC is a serious undertaking deserving of mental, and physical preparation aimed at weapon retention, self-control, good manners, some ability to engage in serious hand to hand combat in addition to being able to draw fire a gun. That's not just my opinion. It's a perspective shared by every law enforcement agency in the world.

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    I only asked the no-holster question out of curiosity. I had no real intention of doing so. If I had known that asking such a question was grounds for being deemed too ignorant to carry a gun I would have certainly held my tongue.

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    gmreplay wrote:
    I only asked the no-holster question out of curiosity. I had no real intention of doing so. If I had known that asking such a question was grounds for being deemed too ignorant to carry a gun I would have certainly held my tongue.
    I have concealed carry without a holster and the handgun was plenty secure. The question was legitimate and the rude answer was uncalled for.

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    gmreplay wrote:
    rmansu2 wrote:
    gmreplay wrote:
    "...lack of a CCW means that it would be quite difficult for me to carry in areas where I would like to, such as while getting gas."
    ?????

    I think I misunderstand your line of thougt. I regularly OC "while getting gas," even inside the store. I'm not sure why a CCW would help unless you don't actually plan to OC. From your comments here, it would appear that you are leaning towards CC. I say "to each his own." I have mine as well and carry depending on the situation and if I can easily conceal. If I can't easily conceal, ie it's obvious I'm carrying, I may as well OC because everyone can tell anyway.

    I say make your mind and get comfortable with the fact that you can potentially save or end someone's life with your decisions.

    PS. Glad to have someone else thinking about protecting the sheep.
    From my understanding of Michigan law I can't have a pistol on or near my person in the car. In fact, it must be in the trunk unloaded. That means that when I go to get gas I must open the trunk, load the pistol, place it in my holster, get gas (a 2-3 minute procedure), and then reverse the process. That seems one hell of a lot more complex than just already having the pistol on my person and getting the gas, which a CCW would permit me to do. Or have I misunderstood something?
    No, you have the law correct. That's why so many, especially in Michigan, OC even if they have a CPL.

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    I don't understand. Why does the Michigan law incentivize ccw holders to open carry?

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