But I already have a perfectly good IWB holster fitted to my gun!
Good. But do you ever leave it at home? Do you go to places where it's not possible to "dress around the gun"? Is it embarrasing when everyone else takes their jacket off, and you keep yours on? Can you take your rig to the beach or the pool? Is the dress code at work slacks, tucked-in dress shirt and tie, but never a coat? Could you take your shirt off?
My father tells the story of when he and his good friend Max the FBI special agent (who just happened to be a member of his church) traveled to California to conduct an interview of a possible new pastor. There they were in a church, in Califonia, the only two people in the entire congregation in suit coats. And of course, his friend Max was not supposed to be unarmed at any time. Eventually, with much anguish, the gun, holster and suit coat all wound up together in the trunk of the rental car - and Max spent the rest of the time nervously peering out the church window to make sure no one got too near the car.
But the draw from inside clothing will be slow!
Compared to what, exactly? The draw is a lot faster than asking your assailant, "Would you mind waiting while I go home and get my gun?" I've carried a gun daily for ten years, and never drawn it once in a confrontation. But I've always been armed even when it would look like there was no possibility that I was carrying a gun. Life is full of imperfect trade-offs.
The question itself suffers from the misconception that a faster draw is always good, which anyone who has graduated from Law School will tell you, is - at best - incomplete. Most experts assert that the best defense is not a weapon, but avoidance of the dangerous situation - which requires even more awareness and quick thinking. Unless you happen work in a profession that grants you legal immunity while waiving a gun about, the awareness that it would take a bit longer to draw a weapon might conceivably save one from being arrested and charged with brandishing a weapon.
And the utter improbability that you could possibly be armed while wearing, say, just a bathing suit on a remote beach, compensates by surprise what it lacks in raw speed.
There's no way that it won't be obvious that there's a gun in my pants.
Actually, most people over-estimate their importance to others. By and large, most people simply aren't paying attention at all. And even the ones who are paying attention, extremely rarely notice this sort of holster.
Like a magic trick, the Lightningwear holster conceals by misdirection. Let's face it - most people (even those in professional law enforcement) are embarrassed to direct a lot of visual attention to other people's groins in public. The Lightningwear holster sits directly in front of the groin, is softly padded, and completely breaks up the sillouette of a pistol, except possibly for a bulge caused by the end of the weapon grip - depending on the size pistol carried in it. As you can see from the pictures below, , small guns disappear into it almost completely.
Noted author John Ross [Unintended Consequences] is reputed to carry a four-pound 4" S&W .500 X-frame revolver in a Smartcarry(tm) holster nearly identical to the Lightningwear, every waking hour of the day. " 'In every class, someone complains there isn't any good way to conceal anything but a mousegun when wearing typical indoor clothing. I smile and draw the 500. Their eyes just bug out,' John says."1
I would agree with the manufacturer above that these sorts of holsters are NOT recommended for any pistol where the holster does not completely cover the trigger guard, but this illustrates the versatility of the general design.
It sits in front of your groin? Is that safe?
Yes, it is. Because it sits in front of your groin, the barrel of the weapon points not at you, but at the ground between your legs. Most IWB holster designs at least potentially point the barrel at some point on your lower torso. Additionally, if you were to fall or be knocked over, most IWB designs are capable of causing significant amounts of bruising and/or damage if you fall and catch your entire body weight on top of the weapon. The rear-draw IWB placement is even capable of causing significant spinal damage if one falls backward on the weapon.
In contrast, it is relatively unlikely that one would fall forward absolutely flat onto one's groin, and thus directly on top of the weapon, simply because that isn't how human anatomy works.
I myself practice the Japanese martial art of Aikido, which makes extensive use of falls and rolls. I would not attempt an Aikido roll with a conventional IWB holster, both for retention and injury reasons - but I don't have a problem doing rolls with this design of holster. There are no body movement restrictions. Because the weapon is trapped under clothing, there is no rentention problem either.
is one additional feature regarding this design and safety: The holster and weapon protect your groin from attack almost effectively as if you were wearing a steel athletic cup. My Kahr K40 weighs 30 oz. loaded. An assailant who decided to kick my groin would be kicking almost 2 pounds of machined steel instead of what he thought he was going to kick.
But what if have to I hug Aunt
Er, if Aunt Mabel
can feel your weapon in this holster while hugging, I'd have to question your general level of intimacy with Aunt Mabel. Most people hug with their upper torsos, not a full-court press. In all seriousness, however, the weapon falls between your legs in such a way that even wives or girlfriends sitting on your leg or even sitting directly on your lap are unlikely to notice anything amiss or unusual.