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Old 03-20-2013, 10:17   #1
atoalson
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Most important, width or height for CCW.

Hi guys, I'm a long time lurker, first time poster. I'v had my CCW for several years now, never carried though. I currently own a XD9 but very interested in Glocks--mainly .45ACP for CCW.

I have been reading more than enough to confuse one past the point of no return. I have several models in mind to try out and see how they fit my hand. My question is which is more important for concealing? Is it the height of the gun--grip length or is it the width? I know it's going to depend on where(body) you carry, but I'm looking for a generalized answer. The two models I'm interested in are the G36 and G30S. You can make a G30S shorter in height by using the 9rd mag versus the G36. However as you know the G30S has more width.

THoughts or input?

Great forum btw!
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Old 03-20-2013, 10:28   #2
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To mw, width is much more of a factor than grip length. Second is the grip length.

For example, I used to CCW both a G19 and a Kahr K9. The K9 was slim and it sort of disappeared. Which is why I maximized its concealabilty by CCWing it exclusively in a IWB holster.

Then I went to CCW with both a G19, for cold weather, and a G26 for summers. About 4 or 5 years ago, after one summer, I realized I can conceal the G19 just as easily as the G26 in summer clothing. Now I just CCW the G19 year round.

If I stop CCWing the G19, I'll be going back to the K9 (or another thin gun). But definitely not the fat Glock blocks.
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Old 03-20-2013, 10:31   #3
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Grip length isn't a primary factor, except among the very skinny, even with a full size gun. Slide length is. Width is not much of a problem with a quality holster and a proper gunbelt. The distance the slide goes below the belt (for OWB) determines how long a cover garment must be worn.
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Originally Posted by atoalson View Post
Hi guys, I'm a long time lurker, first time poster. I'v had my CCW for several years now, never carried though. I currently own a XD9 but very interested in Glocks--mainly .45ACP for CCW.

I have been reading more than enough to confuse one past the point of no return. I have several models in mind to try out and see how they fit my hand. My question is which is more important for concealing? Is it the height of the gun--grip length or is it the width? I know it's going to depend on where(body) you carry, but I'm looking for a generalized answer. The two models I'm interested in are the G36 and G30S. You can make a G30S shorter in height by using the 9rd mag versus the G36. However as you know the G30S has more width.

THoughts or input?

Great forum btw!
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Old 03-20-2013, 10:34   #4
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Originally Posted by patchman View Post
to mw, width is much more of a factor than grip length. Second is the grip length.

For example, i used to ccw both a g19 and a kahr k9. The k9 was slim and it sort of disappeared. Which is why i maximized its concealabilty by ccwing it exclusively in a iwb holster.

Then i went to ccw with both a g19, for cold weather, and a g26 for summers. About 4 or 5 years ago, after one summer, i realized i can conceal the g19 just as easily as the g26 in summer clothing. Now i just ccw the g19 year round.

If i stop ccwing the g19, i'll be going back to the k9 (or another thin gun). But definitely not the fat glock blocks.
agreed!!!
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Old 03-20-2013, 10:42   #5
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For me width is the greater obstacle to deal with.
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Old 03-20-2013, 10:58   #6
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Thanks for the quick replies. I forgot to mention this will be IWB. I'm average size 5'7" 160lbs.
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Old 03-20-2013, 11:16   #7
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If you are going to carry it in an IWB like a Galco King Tuk or Crossbreed then I would not worry about the extra width & go with a G30S with the extra round capacity. I think a more important deciding factor between the G30S & G36 would be which grip you like the feel of better.
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Old 03-20-2013, 11:30   #8
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I'm with you guys. When I switched from a G30 to a 1911 the Kimber felt half as wide.

Remember a holster that cants makes a gun worn in the 3 to 4 o'clock area much easier to conceal. Standard 15* FBI cant helps a lot by pushing the front sights rearward and the rear sights forward it makes the grip more vertical than horizontal which keeps it from poking out in the back.
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Old 03-20-2013, 11:45   #9
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Carried IWB, the length of a gun isn't as important as the width or grip lenth, unless you're attempting to "appendix carry", as the majority of the gun is concealed below the beltline.
I've found that the grip length becomes a major factor once the carry position goes past the 3:00 O'clock position.

Even a short grip pistol, carried IWB will easily "print" in the 3:30 O'clock position (and past) and becomes more easily detected when the carrier is wearing certain garments, and when bending or stooping.

Body "type" also plays a big part in your ability to conceal a firearm of any size, but IMHO, not matter what gun/holster (with the exception of a pocket or ankle holster) you choose, the biggest factor in concealment will be your clothing choice.

Darker colors, printed fabric patterns, loose fitting, and banded-bottom shirts, or longer vests and jackets works for me.
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Old 03-20-2013, 12:08   #10
ithaca_deerslayer
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I think slide length, grip length, and grip shape are most important
The rounded revolver conceals well.
A thin semi-auto, without a protroding thick slide, conceals well.
A long grip would have be thin and kept tight to the body, and even then might not allow bending over without printing.
Barrel length, when 4" or under, usually isn't much of problem for IWB, but may be for other kinds of carry.

Carry Issues

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Old 03-20-2013, 13:55   #11
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Oh, weight of the gun is also very important
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Old 03-20-2013, 14:22   #12
atoalson
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Thanks for all the input so far. I need to visit the LGS, they have a G36 instock, and see how it feels. I like the idea of a 9rd mag in the G30S for reduced height to avoid printing but not sure about the frame width. I wish someone made a 5rd flush mag for the G36, I would already own one--i think.
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Old 03-20-2013, 14:51   #13
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btw to GT, atoalson!

The other thing to consider with grip length, besides the concealment factor, is the shootability factor. Actually the G30 is kind of neat that way with the different length mags it is like convertable

I can shoot ok without my pinky finger on the grip, but I like it a whole lot better when I get all three of my other than trigger finger on the grip. The longer grip in my exp. also gives me a better more consistent draw.

For awhile I carried a Compact Kimber, which is about identical in grip length to a G30 with the long 10 round mag. When I switched to that gun from the G30 I also bought a full size Kimber that I thought I might carry once in awhile. It turned out that the full size became my primary just because I was more consistent with drawing it from cover. Not that the Compact didn't work, mostly it did, just say over 100 draws I might doink up one or two more with that shorter grip as it was just a little less forgiving of less than ideal initial grip.
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Old 03-20-2013, 14:58   #14
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Width of the pistol diminishes with guys that are a tad thick around the middle like myself. :D

I carry a G30 every day. Short of some tighter t-shirts I can wear anything with it. I prefer having the 21 rounds (11 in the pistol + spare mag in the pocket)

I carry IWB @ 8-8:30(I'm a lefty) and I am 50/50 split on being tucked and un tucked. I'm 6'1" and 230 lbs (sadly not all muscle if ya know what I mean). I can wear an XL t-shirt and keep concealed without printing.

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Old 03-20-2013, 15:26   #15
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Welcome to the Forum

as you have probably figured out, there are at least two, and probably three schools of thought here. I will just share my experience and let you take from it what you want.

In my area the climate the wearing of what would be called a "cover garment" is standard for about everyone whether they carry or not. Even on the hottest day of the year there is certainly going to be wind on the beach so an untucked flannel shirt gets no notice. To that end, if wearing OWB the butt projecting or the thickness is a bigger issue than length if the cover is long enough.

With IWB length only comes into play with regards to comfort, OR with some gun/holster combinations where the hipbone acts as a fulcrum on a teeter-totter and pivots the but away from the body. It rarely happens But I have seen it, especially if the gun is at the 3:00 position and not in the hollow slightly behind the hip. A cheap holster tends to accentuate it.

A lot depends on the individual and their physique and their mannerisms and movements. I am 5'8" 160 and have easily carried a 4" "N" frame in an OWB holster I made for the purpose underneath a heavy flannel shirt worn jacket-style. Even my friend who owns the LGS had no idea what I was packing when the subject came up with another customer we knew. I was saying that the holster makes the difference and the other customer, a neighbor opined that, if I were carrying, it must be a small gun. The LGS owner said "What are you carrying CG?" It was hunting season so I swept my shirt back and there was a 4" model 58.

OTOH I have a couple of smaller autos that, because of their grips and configurations just WANT to "poke out" no matter what I do if I pick the wrong garment/holster. I have a quality "Yaqui slide" holster for small autos but if I try to carry an Astra "Constable" .380 in it, the gun is practically thrown away from my body anytime I turn to the left (weakside) or lean that direction, yet I have a "home made"
Yaqui rig for a Browning Highpower that has no such problem at all And I've put more miles on with that rig than I'd care to count. I think a big difference is that I use very heavy leather and I can go to the trouble of "wet molding" the holster to both the gun and my body.

Sorry to be so long winded, but what is at the core of it is that you have to find what works for you, with that particular gun in your particular wardrobe. It's why most of us end up with boxes of holsters. When I buy a new gun I occasionally have to remind my wife about how many shoes and purses she has. If she ever figures out how many holsters I have.......I am in deep Doo-Doo.
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Old 03-20-2013, 15:38   #16
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Width all the way. I switched from a G29 to a full size 1911, easier to conceal due to width. Now when I finally get my P01, I'll be all set.
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Old 03-20-2013, 16:02   #17
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Width is the most important to me when carrying concealed. I tried carrying double stack Glocks and XDs and went back to 1911s. The only double stack pistols I own now are Sigs and they get carried to the range and back in the range bag and that's it. My CCW gun of choice now is the XDs. IWB or OWB it's easy to conceal and easy to carry and that's what is important to me. It doesn't have the round count many folks demand but it's good enough for me.
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Old 03-21-2013, 03:15   #18
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Grip length for me is the problem. Its hard to keep a big grip from printing. Thickness as far as concealment is not going to be a problem. The difference between a Glock and a 1911 is tenths of inches. Its going to disappear on the waist. Thickness is a comfort issue more than anything else.
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Old 03-21-2013, 04:40   #19
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The answer according to the NRA Personal Protection Outside The Home course is width.

One thing most people don't think about is your choice of holster can add considerable width to your carry package. I love my Kramer #2 holster, but its design makes the gun more than 1/2" thicker on the belt.

A Kahr 9mm in some holsters can be thicker than a Glock 30 in a different holster.

However on my body I find a long grip more difficult to conceal.

You need to look at your concealed carry as an entire system of your body type, holster, belt, gun, and cover garment. With compromise and adjustments made to get everything working well together.

The OP's question is kind of like asking a race care driver which is more important on a race car high horsepower or good brakes. The answer is you need both of them.

posted from my stupid smart phone, please excuse any spelling mistakes.
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Old 03-21-2013, 12:40   #20
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Originally Posted by atoalson View Post
Thanks for all the input so far. I need to visit the LGS, they have a G36 instock, and see how it feels. I like the idea of a 9rd mag in the G30S for reduced height to avoid printing but not sure about the frame width. I wish someone made a 5rd flush mag for the G36, I would already own one--i think.
I just bought a 30sf for a house gun but started carrying it. I normally carry a 23 or 27. with a 9 round flush fit mag this 30sf carries just as well as my 23. lenght of grip and slide is harder to deal with than width. as far as width goes the reality is were usually only talking somewhere around a 1/10 of an inch difference.
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Old 03-21-2013, 16:27   #21
atoalson
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Thank for all the input. I'll be going to the LGS this weekend to see what they have and what feels best in my hands. You guys are great!
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Old 03-21-2013, 18:48   #22
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I carry a G17 24/7/365 and I vote for width. I have a very large hand, and the double stack 9mm grip is very nearly too wide for me.
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Old 03-22-2013, 11:21   #23
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For me it's grip height. I'm 5'10" 180lbs. I can conceal a G27 like it's not there but a G22 prints when I do anything but stand still.
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Old 03-22-2013, 16:23   #24
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For me, the most important variable is neither the width nor the height of the pistol; the most important variables are the holster and the belt.

The right holster and belt can hide thick and long much better than the wrong holster (and/or belt) can manage with thin and short.

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Old 03-24-2013, 14:28   #25
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For me

The G36 is very interesting.
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