Holster for teaching.

Later this week, I will be instructing a friend in the use of handguns. She is over 60, has small arthritic hands and has never used a firearm before. She’s taking her required carry course over the weekend. Her loving husband procured a mint S&W Model 12 revolver with a 2″ barrel for her. That’s a 14.5oz gun chambered in 38Special. She has not fired it yet.

She cannot pull the trigger with one finger and has to use both hands in double action. She cannot cock the hammer either. The recoil is likely to be quite painful as well.

I plan on introducing her to guns with a .22 first. The lightest and simplest would be a Keltec PF9 with a Twisted Industries conversion kit. No external safety, same trigger pull on the first and subsequent shots, robust magazines, fiber optic sights available. Picatinny rail provides an option to mount a laser. I will also bring a Walther P22, an M&P22 and a P11 conversion. Once she masters one of those, I will bring out a 32ACP “mini-1911” and see if that has low enough recoil.

M&P22 uses the same holsters as the M&P9, and I have a holster for the Walther. I didn’t have a PF9 holster that wasn’t a deep concealment design — until yesterday, that is. That’s when the Comp-Tac paddle arrived and I plan on using that. It doesn’t require a very sturdy belt, has a Velcro-like patch that keeps it from shifting in the waistband and allows tensions adjustment. Being able to holster safely is always a concern for new shooters — Kydex allows doing that one-handed and without covering self with the muzzle.

This entry was posted in holster, hoster, pistol, training, weapon and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

16 Responses to Holster for teaching.

  1. Patrick says:

    One common complaint is weaker women may have trouble working the slide on an autoloader. One useful trick for those, who may not have a lot of hand & arm strength, is to hold the gun with both arms straight, dominant hand grasping the frame, and weak hand grasping the slide. Twist the shoulders to work the slide, rather than trying to use pure arm or hand strength, the lady will have a better mechanical advantage. This tip has worked well for me in teaching ladies, and other instructors report it works well for them.

    • LarryArnold says:

      I’ll have to try that. I’ve been having students hold the gun close to the body with the shooting hand, grasp the slide with the weak hand, then use both arms to push.

      Regardless, if the handgun has a hammer it can also help to cock it first. It’s also much easier to lock the slide open with an empty magazine than trying to manipulate the slide stop.

  2. LarryArnold says:

    Her loving husband procured a mint S&W Model 12 revolver with a 2″ barrel for her.

    Ouch. That’s the type gun my CHL students have the most trouble with. Stiff recoil, too-small grip, and minimal sight radius. Shooting the fifty-round Texas practical with one is brutal.

    This is the bet-kept secret in shooting: The lighter a gun is, for the same caliber, the harder it kicks. “But,” you say. “Everybody knows that!”

    Right. And nobody remembers to tell the noobies. I’ve seen way too many first-gun folks look down and think, It’s small. It’s light. It’ll be easy to shoot. Actually, just the opposite. (See recoil, grip, sights, above.)

    I average a half-dozen women a year whose SOs selected their gun. Typically six of them get it wrong. [/rant]

    Oh, and WTG Oleg.

  3. Scott J says:

    I love my revolvers. My most commonly carried is a SP-101.

    But I get so annoyed with seeing beginners pushed to snubby revolvers. I always tell beginners they aren’t beginners’ guns.

  4. BLADE says:

    +1 on the SP-101. I acquired a .327 Mag with the 3″ Barrel, smaller frame with 6 rounds. My daughter loves shooting .32 Longs thru it for practice. At first she struggled with the double action so I had her use both fingers, looks funny, but very effective due to the constant even pull. I have no doubt she could empty 6 without a hitch. Also, .32’s and .327 Mag’s are about the only thing left on the shelves.

  5. Parabarbarian says:

    The model 13 is a K not a J but it is an aluminum frame. IIRC the frame is not rated for +P which are not a good idea in the older aluminum framed guns even if they are. The trigger pull can be \

  6. Parabarbarian says:

    Looks like your software truncated my reply.

    • Kristophr says:

      You might have accidentally dropped in some html.

      Lots of comment input dialogs take html out and shoot it to prevent blog hijacking by spammers.

  7. eli says:

    I bought the spouse a LC9 only to learn that she does not have the hand strength to cycle the slide on a semi. Found the SP-101 in .327 Mag, and it was a hit. All the way up from Long’s to .327 Mag.

  8. Michael says:

    While a 38 Special/9mm and up are preferable, her small hands and arthritis may not make that feasible, so if you can borrow one, keep some of these in mind: A Colt 1903 32 ACP/1908 380 ACP. I have the 32 ACP and the recoil is minimal. Also look at some of the Beretta’s where you can tip the barrel up to load.

  9. Sean says:

    I agree that gun is probably too much for her. How about one of those little Beretta’s with the tip up barrel? It is better than nothing. And no slide to pull back.

  10. Paul Koning says:

    My Boberg XR9-S is pretty good on recoil. From what I read on its community board, one customer had excellent results with the longer barrel model (XR9-L) for a lady in a similar situation. Between the way that action works and the longer barrel, the recoil is apparently really gentle.

  11. MAJMike says:

    I’m 62 and I’ve found that the Dragonworks line of leather holsters are the best I’ve yet found. Like many shooters, I have a drawer full of holsters acquired over the years in a vain search for the best possible pistol carrier.

    In Dragonworks, I’ve at last been successful.

Comments are closed.