Fight the Derp: The Handgun Sling

I’ll join in with other bloggers who have pointed out what is quite possibly the most dangerous holster idea I’ve seen to date.

Note they had to top off this screaming ball of fail with unsafe gun handling on the video to boot. Of course, to be fair, I’m not sure how you get the tip into the muzzle without sweeping your digits, due to the inherent dangerousness of this design. If you absolutely positively have to risk your spinal cord and kidneys by carrying small-of-back, there are far better options.

I saw in a comment section of the Internets that derp can neither be created nor destroyed. Higher level derp, if destroyed, can only transform into more lower level derp. Conservation of derp. I now believe this to be a legitimate scientific theory. More study is needed.

This solution really isn’t any better than Mexican Carry. In fact, it may even be worse, since that doesn’t necessarily require you to stick your booger hook all around where the bullets come out of.

What to look for in a holster:

  • The holster retains the gun sufficiently as to prevent it from falling out. The test I usually use is if the gun dumps when you turn the holster upside down, you should adjust it so it won’t, or find another holster if you can’t adjust it. It should still take some force to break the retention.
  • It should protect the trigger guard and essentially make it impossible for anything to engage the trigger.
  • It should keep its shape to allow the gun to be re-holstered easily and instinctively. If you have to pry your holster open to re-holster the gun, your holster sucks and you should find another one.
  • Along with a good holster, you need a good belt. The best holster in the world won’t work well if your belt is insufficient.

I use the Comp-Tac Infidel. A few years ago I would not have recommended their belt clip models (as opposed to the loops), because their clips were insufficient and were prone to working loose from the belt. I had this happen to me twice, though thankfully not in socially problematic situations. The redesigned clips work much better at holding the gun in place and gripping the belt, and are not prone to letting go without deliberate force being applied to pry the clip away from the belt.

14 thoughts on “Fight the Derp: The Handgun Sling”

  1. Yikes. I use the Comp Tac MTAC and it is a great holster, even though the 4″ service pistol I carry in it is bulky. I’ve had a hard time finding good pocket holsters though, at least that have all those same qualities.

    1. Mine is made by Mitch Rosen. It retains very strongly at first, but it’s leather so it it loosens up over time. Pocket holsters are a different beast, since the pocket should retain the gun. What you’re looking for with a pocket holster is trigger protection, and a material that will hold on to the pocket so you don’t end up drawing the gun out along with the holster. It takes some practice, and the draw from a seated position is night impossible. Lots of disadvantages to pocket carry, but sometimes that’s what you’ve got to do.

  2. I’ll pass on this one. I suppose you could use it for appendix carry too. But not me, ever, in any position.

  3. Aside from the safety issue, this product requires a slow and cumbersome procedure to draw the pistol.

    On the bright side, anyone who thinks this product is a good idea will make one instead of buy one, so this product will probably fade away from the market quickly enough.

    Yes this is an unsafe product, but… ; there’s always a but, eh? If you carried your pistol with an empty chamber there is no danger of a self-inflicted wound.

    1. “If you carried your pistol with an empty chamber there is no danger of a self-inflicted wound.”

      Except when you think it’s empty and it’s not. Rule 1! :)

  4. This is simply an minor update of the “string holster” used in WWII by OSS agents. It was mainly used for deniability if you had to ditch your firearm — it’s only a string, sir!

    If you’re a spy in a life or death situation, this method might come in handy, but only in that type of situation. There are far better methods of carry.

    1. It’s my understanding that this kind of deniability is largely the reason for the existence of holsters like Raven Concealment’s Vanguard.

  5. Certainly not the best idea! I would try a versacarry with an empty chamber before the sling; at least the versacarry has a small paddle to keep the trigger from getting hung up in pants material.

    For now I’ll stick to high quality leather made by Alessi or Fist, they haven’t let me down in 20 years (well, except for Lou’s 6 month lead time).

    1. Raven Concealment’s Vanguard 2 is far superior to Versacarry in every conceivable way.

  6. Wyldestyle: That is literally the dumbest thing I’ve ever heard.

    Vitruvius: Let me handle this. That idea is just…the worst…

  7. “This solution really isn’t any better than Mexican Carry. In fact, it may even be worse, since that doesn’t necessarily require you to stick your booger hook all around where the bullets come out of.”

    It’s worse, because it also involves deliberately placing a foreign object inside the barrel. At best, it’s a second projectile when the gun inevitably goes bang at the wrong moment. At worst, it causes a kaboom right up against your kidneys and spine, or other delicate bits if you use it for appendix carry (though I don’t think a kaboom is likely – it doesn’t appear to fit tightly enough for that).

  8. I thought the message at the end of the video was highly amusing: “This is not a safety device.”

    Since I hurt my back in a sledding accident many years ago, and I’ve since become very prone to back pain (particularly after doing a lot of moving of things), carrying something behind my back gives me the heebie-geebies in general. This thing does nothing to assuage my fear that I might fall backwards and hurt by back.

    Some day I would like to get as many types of holsters as I can, and then stick a gun in as many places as I can conceivably do, and then walk around all day like that…but unless I can get a special back holster that will protect me from falls (to the best of my knowledge, one doesn’t exist–would I need molded plywood to be secure that such carry is safe? I don’t know) this is the one form of carry that I will be eschewing in such an experiment. (And I will DEFINITELY avoid the “just a string” carry!)

  9. After carrying a 1911 for well over fifty (50) I believe there is a need for this. It will work on on ATV, Horseback and motorcycles. I spend many hours a day on those types of vehicle most without a back rest. I’m always worrying about losing a handgun and I do have a trunk full of them, believe me.
    I cannot see where it is as dangerous as for instance a Glock with the safety in the trigger. 1911 have, IMHO, 2 fail-safe well tested safeties.Yes I carry in condition red.

    1. There are far better products on the market if your purpose is securing your pistol to your person without putting extra holes in your body.

      If you want to shoot your ass off, be my guest and use this totally unsafe and idiotic product.

      On the other hand, if you want to be safe and NOT shoot your ass off, there are PLENTY of quality holster options on the market.

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