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Old 10-08-2011, 22:06   #1
Andy W
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shoulder holsters are scary

Okay, so I'm a janitor at my college's football stadium. As you may know, a Big 12 football game requires all sorts of staff on hand, including many police officers, both uniformed and in plain clothes. Long story short, I was walking down a hallway in the press box behind a plain clothes police officer when I noticed I had a Glock 19 pointed pretty much right at my face. The holser had the weapon pointed upwards at maybe a 45 degree angle under the officer's left shoulder. I know there was next to no chance of the weapon going off but it was still kinda startling at first. Isn't that one of the main critiques of the shoulder rig, that it points a loaded weapon at everyone behind you or possibly your own chest, especially when you draw?
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Old 10-08-2011, 22:38   #2
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Okay, so I'm a janitor at my college's football stadium. As you may know, a Big 12 football game requires all sorts of staff on hand, including many police officers, both uniformed and in plain clothes. Long story short, I was walking down a hallway in the press box behind a plain clothes police officer when I noticed I had a Glock 19 pointed pretty much right at my face. The holser had the weapon pointed upwards at maybe a 45 degree angle under the officer's left shoulder. I know there was next to no chance of the weapon going off but it was still kinda startling at first. Isn't that one of the main critiques of the shoulder rig, that it points a loaded weapon at everyone behind you or possibly your own chest, especially when you draw?
Yea I understand. A couple of years ago at a range guy had a AD while inserting his firearm in his shoulder holster. I am now petrified when I see some one trying to re holster a gun in one.I recommend they take it off point it down range.Re-holster then put it back on.

I use one I keep one bed side in case I have to run out of the house in my pagamas and need to have a holstered firearm
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Old 10-08-2011, 22:51   #3
Andy W
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Another thing i didn't mention at first was that this cop was a women. First of all, I didn't even know cops still used shoulder holsters. Second, I've never seen a women use one. I thouhgt it was a mens thing. I guess it makes sense though. The way women are built could make prolonged hip carry uncomfortable. No, she wasn't that hot. She was middle aged and a little chubby.
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Old 10-09-2011, 00:07   #4
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Originally Posted by Andy W View Post
Okay, so I'm a janitor at my college's football stadium. As you may know, a Big 12 football game requires all sorts of staff on hand, including many police officers, both uniformed and in plain clothes. Long story short, I was walking down a hallway in the press box behind a plain clothes police officer when I noticed I had a Glock 19 pointed pretty much right at my face. The holser had the weapon pointed upwards at maybe a 45 degree angle under the officer's left shoulder. I know there was next to no chance of the weapon going off but it was still kinda startling at first. Isn't that one of the main critiques of the shoulder rig, that it points a loaded weapon at everyone behind you or possibly your own chest, especially when you draw?
That is the problem I have with it. The holster/unholster movement is going to sweep a hell of an area. Small of back can be pretty bad too, though still not as wrong as a shoulder holster.

And you better not use a shoulder holster next to me at the range.
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Last edited by Warp; 10-09-2011 at 00:08..
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Old 10-09-2011, 00:18   #5
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There is a technique to properly draw from the shoulder rig that almost no one uses that will not sweep the area. You break leather, rotate straight down, keeping the gun straight down and finger off the trigger you cross it to the strong side to basically position #2 in a traditional hip draw where the support hand is now on the chest. From there you rotate forward (#3) then go to #4 where the hands come together. Sounds more complicated than it is. I usually see guys break leather then sweep past their own left arm and the entire left side of the range like they do in the movies.

It is harder to re-holster with out sweeping.

I love a shoulder rig but it is a different technique and I only practice is when I am alone in the desert, not at a populated range.
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Old 10-09-2011, 01:17   #6
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Meh, the loaded, holstered gun pointing at me doesn't bother me, its no different when you are in a multi-story building carrying on your belt in a holster, the muzzle is pointed at the people on the floor beneath you.

Its the holstering and unholstering from a shoulder rig that makes me nervous when I see someone with one at the gravel pit or range. When people don't draw the way BatesMotel described it, they unwittingly muzzle sweep everyone on the side the gun is carried on.

The shoulder rig is not dangerous, the person not taking proper care when unholstering around other people is.
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Old 10-09-2011, 02:03   #7
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Meh, the loaded, holstered gun pointing at me doesn't bother me, its no different when you are in a multi-story building carrying on your belt in a holster, the muzzle is pointed at the people on the floor beneath you.

Its the holstering and unholstering from a shoulder rig that makes me nervous when I see someone with one at the gravel pit or range. When people don't draw the way BatesMotel described it, they unwittingly muzzle sweep everyone on the side the gun is carried on.

The shoulder rig is not dangerous, the person not taking proper care when unholstering around other people is.
I had a really good response ready to post, but you said it better with fewer words.
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Old 10-09-2011, 04:43   #8
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I'm fond of the Alessi Bodyguard and like to wear it when I'm driving a long period. I understand the OP's concerns though as most people don't know how to draw from one, let alone keep their fingers off the trigger.
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Old 10-09-2011, 07:28   #9
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Another thing i didn't mention at first was that this cop was a women. First of all, I didn't even know cops still used shoulder holsters. Second, I've never seen a women use one. I thouhgt it was a mens thing. I guess it makes sense though. The way women are built could make prolonged hip carry uncomfortable. No, she wasn't that hot. She was middle aged and a little chubby.
Woman. It's "a woman" in the singular.

You thought it was a "mens thing"? Shoulder holsters are "scary"?

Come on now. Since when does any carry method have anything to do with gender?

This is so much of a non-issue it's not even worth considering. Was the officer's hand anywhere near the gun? If not, there was not only "next to" no chance of the gun going off, there was NO CHANCE AT ALL.

How do you carry your guns, if you do so? Is there any time at all when the gun, while in its holster, has the muzzle directed at any part of your body? A shoulder holster is no different from that. Trigger covered? Non-issue.
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Old 10-09-2011, 09:42   #10
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Woman. It's "a woman" in the singular.

You thought it was a "mens thing"? Shoulder holsters are "scary"?

Come on now. Since when does any carry method have anything to do with gender?

This is so much of a non-issue it's not even worth considering. Was the officer's hand anywhere near the gun? If not, there was not only "next to" no chance of the gun going off, there was NO CHANCE AT ALL.

How do you carry your guns, if you do so? Is there any time at all when the gun, while in its holster, has the muzzle directed at any part of your body? A shoulder holster is no different from that. Trigger covered? Non-issue.
Oh, don't be a grammar nazi. I'm usually pretty good about watching my GPS (grammar, punctuation, spelling) but considering I had just spent 10 hours walking back and forth through hallways and several flights of stairs, I think a few errors are acceptable. Also, considering I spend 90% of my time on a college campus, I don't carry my guns or even have them in my posession. They're all at my mom's house.

As for shoulder holsters relating to gender, it was just an ovservation I made. I had never seen a women use a shoulder holster before. I guess I got it from the movies more than anything. In the movies, the stereotypical middle aged, overweight, chain smoking male detective always carries his gun in a shoulder holster and that image has stuck with me.

I know the weapon was safe while in the holster. However, can you really say there is absolutely no chance of something happening or not happening? Maybe a 99.9999999% chance nothing can happen but there's always that tiny, almost microscopic sliver of possibility that some freak accident can happen.

However, I wasn't really that worried about it at the time. My reaction was more like, "hey, she's carrying a G19 in a shoulder holster. That's interesting. The muzzle is also staring right at me. I bet if I was any closer I might be able to see if she has a round in the chamber" I guess scary was a bad way to describe it; that is, unless she suddenly had to draw her gun. Then I would have other things to worry about than whether or not she swept me with the muzzle.
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Old 10-09-2011, 12:28   #11
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I understand the feeling. I gives me the hibby jibbies when a loaded firearm is pointing at me. I see this a lot when deployed. before entering the dining facilities, firearms must be unloaded. there is always a line and it sucks to be behind the guy with a shoulder holster....
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Old 10-09-2011, 13:03   #12
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Drawing and holstering a shoulder rig, especially a horizontal or upside down design, is something to be practised with a DUMMY gun till you have it right. And use a video camera to record your technique so you can see any safety violations.

It's alot harder to learn than a belt rig.

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Old 10-09-2011, 13:09   #13
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Actually women wouldn't have near the hard time as men carrying with a shoulder rig. They are trained to not notice the straps of a bra cutting into their shoulders at an early age.
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Old 10-09-2011, 14:02   #14
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I think it's more of a "mind" thing. Whether or not there's ANY chance of an AD happening, it's always going to be disconcerting staring at the business end of a loaded gun. Regardless of any risk. or lack there of, our brain tells us "this is where you DON'T want to be".

I've had a Miami Classis rig that I recently retired from duty(gave to a friend). I ride a bike, so I love shoulder rigs, they're to most comfortable & secure way to carry while riding IMHO.

Galco will put together any set-up you want, my next rig will be as follows...

MCII harness, I like the wider straps.

MCI mag holder.

Their "VHS"(vertical) holster.

In black.
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Old 10-09-2011, 18:07   #15
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Among the most rudimentary - and absolute - factors of firearms safety is not to point a loaded firearm at anyone or thing you do not intend to shoot or destroy.

Horizontal shoulder holsters continuously contradict that rudimentary rule.

The rationalization that vertical shoulder holsters are comparably dangerous 'because they constantly point at the floor, which might result in an AD that goes through the floor to impact people on the lower floor' is not at all comparable to the direct hazard imposed by the horizontally holstered firearm constantly sweeping everyone behind the shoulder holstered weapon.

In the setting of a weapon carried in a vertical shoulder holster, the floor itself factors in an (often completely impenetrable) obstacle of protection, while the horizontally carried shoulder holstered firearm presents a real (constantly unobstructed) possibility of an AD with no (however inadvertently incumbent) protection whatsoever.

IMHO, this is not a matter of 'opinion', however unpopular it may be with the horizonal holster armed and/or advocating camp.

In summary, the entire issue of horizontal shoulder holster carry is functionally indefensible.

Every incident of accidental or reckless shooting is argument favoring those who would convulute the second Amendment and otherwise present arguments against the right of law abiding citizens to legally keep and carry firearms. For this (cardinal) reason, IMHO, horizontal shoulder holsters can and may be (reasonably) banned from use by anyone, certainly including LEOs.

Repeat: this post is not an objection against any portion of the spirit and law of the second Amendment, but rather, a motion to protect it from those who would opportune to oppose it.
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Old 10-09-2011, 19:03   #16
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Among the most rudimentary - and absolute - factors of firearms safety is not to point a loaded firearm at anyone or thing you do not intend to shoot or destroy.

Horizontal shoulder holsters continuously contradict that rudimentary rule.

The rationalization that vertical shoulder holsters are comparably dangerous 'because they constantly point at the floor, which might result in an AD that goes through the floor to impact people on the lower floor' is not at all comparable to the direct hazard imposed by the horizontally holstered firearm constantly sweeping everyone behind the shoulder holstered weapon.

In the setting of a weapon carried in a vertical shoulder holster, the floor itself factors in an (often completely impenetrable) obstacle of protection, while the horizontally carried shoulder holstered firearm presents a real (constantly unobstructed) possibility of an AD with no (however inadvertently incumbent) protection whatsoever.

IMHO, this is not a matter of 'opinion', however unpopular it may be with the horizonal holster armed and/or advocating camp.

In summary, the entire issue of horizontal shoulder holster carry is functionally indefensible.
I completely disagree.

A holstered gun does not engage in the act of sweeping. It is not being held in a hand, therefore it is not being handled and there is no chance for it to be fired. A gun held in a hand can sweep someone because it is actually being handled and there is a chance for it be fired.

Do you use any holsters that at any time have the muzzle directed at any part of your body? For example, IWB holsters do this all the time. Do you consider that to be sweeping of your own body?
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Old 10-09-2011, 19:25   #17
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Do you use any holsters that at any time have the muzzle directed at any part of your body? For example, IWB holsters do this all the time. Do you consider that to be sweeping of your own body?
people could care less if you sweep your own body part. the main concern here is sweeping other people. haven't you heard of stories about Joe gunsmith did a dremel job with his trigger and went fully automatic?
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Old 10-09-2011, 19:33   #18
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people could care less if you sweep your own body part. the main concern here is sweeping other people. haven't you heard of stories about Joe gunsmith did a dremel job with his trigger and went fully automatic?
What does this have to do with the issue?

The gun is holstered. It's not being handled. Therefore no matter what has been done to the trigger, or not, it is irrelevant. It is not sweeping anyone. It will not go off by itself.
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Old 10-09-2011, 19:43   #19
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The gun is holstered. It's not being handled. Therefore no matter what has been done to the trigger, or not, it is irrelevant. It is not sweeping anyone. It will not go off by itself.
not handled? how do you holster and unholster the pistol without you holding the pistol and pointing it someone behind you?
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Old 10-09-2011, 19:53   #20
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not handled? how do you holster and unholster the pistol without you holding the pistol and pointing it someone behind you?
I have never had to take it out of the holster while out in public. Likewise, I have never had to reholster it while out on public.

I was addressing the use of them in general. Lakota above was speaking in general terms, as if the use of them overall was unsafe. As in, if I'm standing somewhere and there are people around and behind me, my gun is sweeping them as I walk around. That is what I am referring to.
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