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Is It Worth Carrying A Backup Gun?

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There comes a point when nearly everyone with a concealed carry permit stops and wonders, “should I carry a backup gun?” This thought is a fair one and may have been sparked by any number of influences, like news reports, a story from a friend, or even a scene in a TV show. But is it really worth carrying a backup gun? As a leading maker of custom Kydex gun holsters, On Your 6 Designs has put some thought into this question. Let’s look at the merits of a backup gun.

The Philosophy of the Backup Gun

When you find yourself in a high stakes self-defense situation, you really won’t know what to expect until it happens. But that doesn’t mean you can’t prepare for it. A backup gun allows you to react to changes in your situation quickly and efficiently. For instance, should your primary firearm run out of ammo or suffer from a jam, you can rely on your backup gun. For some, pulling a second gun might be faster than reloading, allowing them to practice a “New York reload” instead. There’s also the peace of mind that comes from having another self-defense tool when you need it most.

Things to Consider

If the idea of a backup gun is more than idle thought, keep these items in mind.

  • Carrying a second gun means added expenses. You likely invested good money into your primary weapon, ammo, a concealed carry holster, and training. Do you have the resources to support a second weapon?
  • You’ll need to spend more time training. That means developing the muscle memory to draw a nice firearm from a holster that’s in a separate location on your body. Do you have the time to practice with two firearms at the range?
  • Concealing two firearms can be difficult. You probably won’t be able to carry two pistols on your belt discreetly. This means you might have to use ankle or shoulder holsters. These may not be practical for your region’s weather and climate. Off-the-body carry is an option but presents its own challenges. Are you ready to change your habits to carry a backup gun?

If you are ready to add a backup gun to your everyday carry tools, then it’s time to figure out which firearm and how to carry it.

What Should You Carry?

Like your primary concealed carry firearm, carry the backup gun you feel most confident and capable with and can conceal readily. Your primary firearm might be a full-size 1911, but we think you’ll be hard-pressed to conceal two of those convincingly.

In general, smaller is better when it comes to backup guns. The subcompact and micro categories of pistols are filled with great choices in proven calibers like 9mm and .380. The size of these pistols makes them easy to conceal in an ankle holster or even in a pocket. It’s never a bad idea to visit your local gun store and handle a few “pocket pistols” to see which one is comfortable in your hands.

Where to Conceal Your Backup Gun

Where you carry your backup gun depends on a few things, like where you carry your primary gun, how you dress, and what you do. That said, some common places for storing your backup gun include:

  • Pockets
  • Purses or backpacks
  • Jacket or shoulder holsters
  • Ankle holster

Think about whether you stand or sit for most of the day. If you’re in and out of vehicles all day, a pocket holster might be inconvenient, but a car mounted holster would be ideal.

Do You Really Need a Backup Gun?

It’s always important to ask yourself is this something you really need. In some cases, a backup gun can actually make your day-to-day life more difficult and less safe. Since they are harder to conceal, you have more chances to draw unwanted attention. It can also be difficult to secure two firearms if you have to go to a “gun free” zone like a post office. That said, there are those in certain fields who might benefit from a backup gun. Off-duty cops might like having one near at hand. High profile individuals or their protection personnel might need one.

You should devote some serious thought as to whether a backup gun will help or hinder your self-defense efforts. Whatever you decide, trust your decision, and dedicate time, energy, and resources into training to the best of your abilities with your self-defense tools.

Custom Concealed Carry Holsters For Your Needs

No matter if you carry one firearm or three, On Your 6 Designs has the equipment for you. We hand form each of our kydex holsters so it perfectly fits your particular make and model of pistol. With options for both IWB and OWB, our holsters can match your preferred concealed carry style. Order now and enjoy our lifetime guarantee.

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Make Summertime Carry Easy

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As we start the month of June, we can say with confidence that summer is here. That means it’s time for long trips to the lake, bike rides with friends, BBQs, baseball, and so much more. While we all love to relax in the summer, if you’re carrying a concealed firearm, the change in weather also means a change in your carrying habits.

While the extra sunshine might leave you a little sweaty, you shouldn’t sweat your concealed carry strategies. To make concealed carry a little easier all year long, On Your 6 Designs has put together a few quick tips for summertime concealed carry.

Seasonal Changes to Concealed Carry

If you live somewhere with a consistent temperature year-round, this blog might not be as relevant to you. But if you live somewhere with four, or even three seasons, you might notice that you have to reconsider what you carry, and how you carry it, in response to the weather.

Summer is no exception, and for most parts of the country, this is the time of the year when temperatures rise, and most people switch to shorts and t-shirts, shedding the layers that make concealing so easy in fall and winter. Being ready for these changes mean you can carry more effectively, and more comfortably.

Consider a Smaller Firearm

This might not be practical for everyone for a variety of reasons. Budget constraints, caliber preferences, and more might prevent you from purchasing another firearm. But if you’re looking for an excuse to buy another firearm, this could be it.

Small sized pistols are great for summertime carry. Options like the M&P Shield, the Sig Sauer P290RS or the Springfield XD(S) have proven to be popular in the concealed carry market for year round carry, but their subcompact size makes them well suited for your board shorts and tank top attire in the summer. Their lighter weight also means less strain on your gun belt, and their slim size means that you can adequately conceal them with just a t-shirt.

Don’t Succumb to Chaffing

Increased temperatures and spending more time outside means your body will sweat more during the summer. When you wear a holster close to your body on your hip, you might start to chafe in the area around the holster. Irritated skin is uncomfortable any time of the year, and if you’re constantly scratching your side, you might accidentally reveal your firearm. Plus, if your skin is agitated, you might leave your firearm at home.

To avoid this, consider wearing a light undershirt in addition to your normal shirt. You could also use products like Gold Bond or Body Glide which are designed to prevent chafing.

Mix Up Your Wardrobe

Your manner of dress will likely change in response to the weather anyway, but you might consider changing some of your style choices in order to better carry a firearm. While not always fashionable, cargo shorts make concealing a firearm easy. You can store your extra magazines in the cargo pockets, along with other EDC essentials like notebooks, pens, and pocket knives.

Also, consider the type of fabric you’re wearing. Synthetic fibers are remarkably breathable and wick away sweat. Surprisingly, wool might be a great choice for you too. Merino wool is light, breathable, moisture wicking, and can even resist odors. Wear a looser shirt in a darker color. This will prevent the shirt from snagging on your weapon or from printing.

Consider Your Holster Options

Your choice of holster can impact how comfortable you are during the summer. Leather holsters might look sharp, but in the summer, they’re sticky and slimy. If you sweat through your leather holster, you can actually start to corrode or rust the finish on your firearm, which can lead to functional issues down the road. Instead, look for lightweight materials with a sweat resistant liner, like Kydex.

Outside the waistband holsters might be great for fall and winter months when you can wear a coat over them, but an OWB holster isn’t well suited for summer carry. The larger size means more opportunities for printing and snagging on your t-shirts or light button downs. Instead, opt for an inside the waistband holster. They’re slimmer, and sit closer to your body, making it easy to conceal.

Have a Safe Storage Option Near to Hand

It can be difficult to carry a firearm with you during the summer months if for no other reason than summertime activities require increased mobility and freedom of motion. This can make it tricky to keep a firearm hidden on your body.

So when you’re invited to go on a trail run, take a long hike, or head to the lake for some swimming and rafting, you’ll need a safe place to store your firearm. There are a variety of manufacturers that offer car safes for your firearm. Off the body carry isn’t ideal, but storing your firearm in a bag that stays with you is still better than not having the firearm with you at all.

As we mentioned above, the right holster can make summertime carry much easier. That’s why it’s important to invest in a quality piece of gear the first time. At On Your 6 Designs, we offer custom concealed carry holsters that are hand-formed to fit your particular model of firearm. Browse our collection today to find the right holster for your year-round concealed carry needs.

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Dressed For Success: Business Casual Concealed Carry

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There’s no denying that the dress code for most workplaces is relaxing. What used to be considered attire strictly for casual Fridays can now be worn on Monday. But not everyone has the option to wear loose and comfortable T-shirts for 40 hours a week. For many firearm owners, they face the challenge of wanting to conceal their firearm on them at work but still maintain their professional appearance.

Fortunately, there are a variety of ways to get around this issue. At On Your 6 Designs, we’re always developing new ways to more effectively conceal your firearm, so let’s dissect some ways you can look sharp while still staying ready for anything.

Disclaimer: We would be remiss if we didn’t first address the issue of firearms in the workplace. Your job may not allow you to keep a firearm with you onsite, concealed or not. It’s your responsibility to check with your employer before concealing a firearm at work.

Re-Evaluate Your Carry Gun

Everyone carries a different firearm for different reasons. But in some cases, you have to choose the right tool for the job, in this case, somewhat literally.

If you typically turn to full-size handguns for concealed carry, you may have to select a different firearm during work hours. Let’s face it, dress clothes look best when they fit well and have a slimming effect on your appearance. A full-sized handgun can interrupt the visual lines of a business casual outfit.

Consider using a compact, or even sub-compact pistol or revolver. Not only are they thinner in most cases, they often aren’t as tall or long, meaning they fit more naturally along the hip or even in your pocket.

Bring The Blazer Back

While light jackets and blazers have slowly faded from most people’s workplace attire, it’s still a classy garment that looks good with more casual outfits. Not only do they look great, but they’re also a superb cover garment for your concealed firearm.

A well-fitted blazer for concealed carry is not too tight but not too loose either. This prevents the fabric of the jacket from pressing tightly only the outline of your firearm which can lead to printing. Similarly, a well-fitted blazer also doesn’t billow around you, which means material could get caught on your pistol, which might reveal it to those around you.

Most who conceal carry in a blazer elect to carry their pistol or revolver on their strong side hip, or the 3 or 9 o’clock position. This allows the blazer to cover most of the firearm while still providing rapid access to it when needed.

Look For Clothes Dedicated to Concealed Carry

If the options above don’t quite work for you, you can look for business casual options from the myriad of specialty stores and manufacturers that create concealed carry clothing. These brands often have shirts and pants that look nice but are still practical for carrying a firearm. This might be a great option for some.

Take a Trip to the Tailor’s

Another way to make concealed carry easier in business clothes is to have your clothes fitted and adjusted at a tailor. This method is often one of the easiest and most cost-effective ways to make concealed carry in business casual clothes easier. As an added benefit, your clothes will fit better and you’ll looker nicer at work.

Before you head to your closest tailor, make sure you ask in advance that they’re willing to work with you and your firearm. Some might be nervous about the idea, but others won’t flinch.

Tailors can make a variety of adjustments to your clothing that make it easier for you to carry a firearm. For instance, they can add extra length to the hem of your shirts. They can put layers of stiff fabric on the insides of your jackets to prevent printing. They can take in or let out parts of the garment in order to accommodate a variety of holster types.

Concealed Holsters Tailor-Made For Your Firearm

On Your 6 Designs offers custom-made holsters that are designed to fit your particular firearm. No matter the brand or model, we can craft a Kydex holster that offers excellent retention, protection, and ease of use. Order your custom Kydex holster today!

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The Most Common Concealed Carry Mistakes Beginners Make

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As anyone who regularly concealed carries a firearm can tell you, there is a bit of a learning curve when you first start. Concealed carry takes practice and a change in mindset, but it is a fairly straightforward process to adopt if you’re aware of the mistakes you could make.

With that in mind, we here at On Your 6 Designs thought we’d outline some of the most common mistakes we see beginners make when they first start carrying a concealed firearm. Study them well and you’ll make carrying a handgun feel natural in no time.

Buying Cheap Gear

Once you’ve been permitted to conceal a firearm or have received the training, you might feel ready to start carrying a handgun right away. However, make sure that you have the right gear. A cheap dress belt from Kohls will bend and flex under the weight of even the most micro of wonder nines. A cheap holster will fold, buckle, and bend, making it difficult to draw and re-holster your weapon.

Instead, invest in high-quality gear right from the get-go. Get a heavy, thick leather belt, and invest in a durable and lightweight Kydex gun holster. This combination will not only serve you for years to come but will make concealing and carrying your firearm easier. If you can’t afford to buy the right equipment right away, it may be worth waiting rather than buying something cheap. After all, if you purchase a cheap holster and have to buy a nicer one later, you’ve only spent your money twice.

Adjusting Their Holster Too Much

Have you ever noticed someone while you’re out and about who seems to be fidgeting a lot? Maybe they’re picking at the hem of their shirt or constantly patting the back of their hip. Even if this person isn’t concealing a firearm, their actions are conspicuous and obvious. It draws undue attention to who they are, what they’re doing, and how they’re doing it.

Many new carriers are naturally nervous and as such, they calm their nerves by constantly checking the position of their handgun and holster. They pull up their pants and tug down their shirts. Look, this doesn’t look natural, and the whole point of concealed carry is to look as natural as possible.

Don’t fidget and fiddle with your pistol, holster or gun belt. Dress around the firearm and you’ll never have to worry about a wardrobe malfunction. That said, if you feel your holster or handgun coming loose, step into a nearby restroom and take a moment to fix it. Of course, if you have a holster that has a good level of retention like our Kydex holsters, you won’t have to worry about this in the first place.

Not Having Enough Training

Just because some can carry a firearm doesn’t mean they should. Before you decide to conceal carry a handgun, make sure you’ve taken the time to get the right training and practice. Take firearm safety courses if you haven’t already. Take a few classes that are specific to concealed carry. Then take a few more classes on how to use your preferred firearm effectively.

Carrying a concealed firearm should instantly turn you into an avid student, one who’s always looking to improve their skills and knowledge.

Having the Wrong Mindset

Hollywood has done a great job of making average people feel like superheroes. Just because you’re carrying a firearm doesn’t mean that you’re suddenly the new sheriff in town. Carrying a firearm is an immense responsibility. It also requires a change in mindset. You have to be more alert of your surroundings, more aware of the power you carry on your hip, and perhaps most importantly, more aware of your limitations.

Remember, you want to be the good guy with a gun, and sometimes that means getting out of a situation before you even have to draw it. Your firearm should be your last ditch effort to defend yourself and your loved ones, not your first response to a stressful situation.

Custom Kydex Concealed Holsters

Anyone who carries regularly can tell you that your firearm and your gear should always work, no compromises. That’s why On Your 6 Designs makes some of the finest quality Kydex holsters on the market. Backed by a lifetime warranty, you never have to worry about your holster failing at the wrong time. Browse our line of firearm and magazine holsters and order yours today.

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Leather or Kydex: What Should Your Holster Be Made Of?

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Whether you’re new to carrying a concealed firearm every day or you’ve been doing it for years, one of the recurring challenges you face is choosing the right holster for the job. A quick trip to your local gun store yields a seemingly endless variety of holsters from different brands, all for different models and makes of pistol or revolver.

Once you’ve rightfully rejected the $20 bargain bin special holsters, you leave the store and head online in search of a custom concealed carry holster that perfectly fits your firearm. Now you’re really left with two choices: leather or Kydex. But which should you choose? The choice is more clear than you may realize. Let’s review some of the pressing factors in choosing a conceal carry holster for your firearm.

Protecting Your Finish

The finish of your firearm may or may not be an important factor for you. Some might view their concealed carry piece as something that’s understandably going to take some abuse. However, others might be more concerned about the state of their finish. In either case, leather and Kydex holsters are going to affect the finish of your firearm differently.

Kydex is naturally rigid and durable. But when heated, it can be carefully formed to match every contour of a firearm. That means that a Kydex concealed holster retains your gun in place very well. However, it can lead to undue wear and tear on the finish. But these light scratches can be readily addressed with some gun bluing.

Many higher-end leather holsters are lined with some kind of padding to protect the finish of your firearm, be it suede, cloth, or nylon. While these might keep your weapon from getting scratched while drawing and reholstering, they aren’t without their downsides.

Those in warmer climates, like we in San Antonio, can relate to the problem of peeling a leather holster off your hip at the end of a long day. The sweat your body generates seeps into the leather, creating a warm, damp environment for your firearm. The salts in your sweat can build up and collect on your firearm, eventually leading to issues like rust and corrosion.

The Retention of Your Firearm

At the most fundamental level, your holster needs to do nothing more than securely hold your weapon in place. Retention is key for concealed carry holsters. Some holsters do this better than others of course.

Leather holsters rely on the fit and finish of the leather to hold your firearm in place. This process of friction holding the gun in place may work great when you first own the holster. But over time as the leather ages, that friction between leather and firearm begins to lessen as the leather stretches and molds to not only your firearm but your body as well.

An ill-fitting or old leather holster only leads to loose firearms, which means more accidental drops, more negligent discharges, and more problems.

Conversely, durable Kydex holsters offer an unrivaled level of retention. Once molded to the shape and form of your weapon, Kydex holsters will not reshape or deform. This means that your concealed carry firearm will ride securely in your holster all day long, even as you move about.

Maintaining Your Concealed Holster

A diligent firearm owner is no stranger to the idea of maintaining your equipment. After all, at the end of every trip to the range, your weapons are broken down and cleaned. But just because you’re used to caring for your equipment doesn’t mean you want to spend all of your time doing it.

Leather holsters need to be cared for as regularly as your actual firearm in many cases. Leather cleaners, oils, waterproofers, and more all have to be added to your leather holster on a regular basis to ensure that it maintains its form and to prevent the leather from degrading.

Kydex, on the other hand, is simple to maintain. Simply remove the firearm, wipe down the holster with a damp cloth and let it dry overnight. That’s it.

Order Your Custom Kydex Gun Holsters Today

If you’re looking for the ideal holster for your concealed carry firearm, look no further than the Kydex holsters offered by On Your 6 Designs. We make each holster by hand to fit your distinct model and make of firearm, ensuring the highest quality of fit and retention. We back all of our products with an unbeatable lifetime warranty. Whether you carry a Glock, 1911, Sig, or anything in between, we’ve got the custom Kydex holster for you. Browse our firearm and magazine holsters today.