What’s In Your Pocket?

I mentioned yesterday Uncle’s review of an interesting holster. There are a number of problems I have with pocket carry, based on all the equipment I prefer to carry. First, here’s some of the gear I’m carrying:

The Apple chicklet keyboard is for scale. I’m not carrying that with me. But starring from left to right is a Kimber Pepper Blaster II, a Kel-Tec P3-AT, Fenix LD10 Flashlight, Sabre Red OC, and a spare loaded mag for the Kel-Tec. Not featured is the SOG Aegis, car keys, wallet, nor the iPhone and MultiTool I carry everywhere.

I’m not carrying all these things all the time. I either carry the OC canister, or the Pepper Blaster. Not both. If you look at the pocket holster I carry the Kel-Tec in, I have the flashlight laid out exactly how I prefer to carry it in pocket. Why? Because it breaks up the outline. You’ll see what I mean:

The camera didn’t do it justice, but these are an older pair of jeans that have a gun shape worn in them. Those got worn before I figured out I needed something to break up the outline. Even if I carry a wallet in my front pocket, at least I feel the wear pattern looks kind of obvious. In this picture, the Kel-Tec and holster are in the pocket, so you can see it’s obvious to someone observant that I’m carrying.

The purpose of a pocket holster is to protect the trigger, and to keep the gun upright in the pocket. It does an excellent job of that. But after a while, it doesn’t break up the outline effectively, and needs help. I’m not sure a holster that helps something else ride there is the answer, even thought I said yesterday it might be cool.

First, if I’m carrying a flashlight in that pocket, I go fetch that several times a day. There can’t be a holster getting in the way of that. Secondly, I need to be able to place it back in a pocket, and secure it in place without man handling anything, and definitely without having to remove the holster from the pocket to redo straps or get things in the right position.

Everything’s really a trade off. If we were all cops we could just keep everything on a duty belt, but we’re not. We have to make choices. In summer time, for me that means a pocket rocket instead of a Glock 19. That means a smaller OC canister. After more thought, I think the main piece of gear that would be helpful in this setup is a pocket holster for the Pepper Blaster II, for when I opt to carry that in circumstances I can’t carry a pistol. The original Pepper Blaster had a clip, but for some reason Kimber didn’t do that with the second version. I feel uncomfortable carrying the PB II in a pocket without the trigger guarded. The safety that comes with it is feeble.

If anyone has any suggestions or good stories from their own experience, feel free to chime in.

12 thoughts on “What’s In Your Pocket?”

  1. If you pocket-carry, the ONLY thing that goes into the gun pocket is the gun (and the holster; holster is not optional for pocket carry).

    Never put anything else into the pocket with the gun in it. Nothing. No flashlights, no OC, no knives, no phone and absolutely no keys of any sort.

    If there is nothing else in that pocket, nothing can get wedged against the trigger and fire the gun when you squat down and the pants bunch up.

    If there is something else in that pocket, it WILL be in your way when you try to draw the gun. Murphy’s Law guarantees it.

    Negligent discharges while pocket-carrying are usually the result of something else being in the pocket with the gun.

    Don’t do it!

  2. Actually, I find having the flashlight riding in the same pocket opens the pocket up and makes the draw easier. It always rides in the same area, because it kind of wants to be in that space so the side of the holster, like it’s showing.

  3. That’s a lot of stuff. Why carry two pepper sprays rather than just one?

    Another option would be to drop the Fenix LD10 and go to a AAA style flashlight on your keyring.

    The LD10 is only 132 lumens. You could swap it for a AAA flashlight like the TI Illuminati CA1 which is 115 lumens and lose a lot of bulk.


  4. I don’t. It’s one or the other. In the summer, I’m carrying a canister. Actually, I haven’t carried the Pepper Blaster much.

    Thanks for the flashlight tip though.

  5. Try the Kramer pocket holster – the panel on the side keeps it upright and helps break up the outline: http://www.kramerleather.com/productDetail.cfm?productID=25&categoryID=28&make=KEL-TEC&model=p-3at%20.380%202.7&CFID=17645846&CFTOKEN=65220369

    I agree there shouldn’t be anything else in the pocket, but I find that a knife clipped to the pocket doesn’t get in the way of the gun and actually helps keep the gun upright and in the pocket. Clip your flashlight to your support side pocket.

    Just what has worked for me for 10+ years.

  6. Sorry, Sebastian — I have to disagree with you. I’m in the same school of thought as Hyman.

    My PF-9 and its holster are the only thing that go in that pocket. Nothing else. No exceptions. Doesn’t matter how big or small my pockets are. If I’ve got 1 in the chamber (and yes I ALWAYS do) then nothing else goes in the pocket.

    My daily carry gear can be seen at:

  7. You don’t have to apologize for disagreeing. I can see how it’s a bad idea. You can probably convince me it’s a bad idea.

    I don’t ever carry loose items, it’s just the flashlight’s always found it’s place there, and it doesn’t move. Not too worried about the trigger on the gun because it’s protected.

    I will have to look at a hoslter that breaks up the outline better that this one so I can carry properly.

  8. I have one of this guy’s holsters for my Kahr P380. I use the anti-print panel in the winter with jeans, but take it off in the summer when I wear cargo shorts – the extra pockets break up the outlines just fine without it.

  9. I usually wear cargos, so my knife gets clipped to one of the cargo pockets while the gun goes in to the front pocket. That way both are accessible but also separate from each other too.

  10. Typo… … the PepperBlaster is made by Kimber, not Kel-Tec.
    I know what you meant. :D

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