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Why Your EDC Strategy May Be Wrong




If you follow a lot of survival and self-defense articles, you are bound to see at least one or two on individual everyday carry. The same goes for those who watch the gun guys on YouTube. I’m not sure if people are actually fascinated by someone else’s everyday carry or people just like to see everyone’s perspective. Maybe we Internet self-proclaimed gun and self-defense experts just like showing off what we carry.

I do tend to have opinions and waste too much money on different gizmos, gadgets and holsters until I find one that works just right for me. I have two different everyday carries, one while at my home office and one for when I need to meet with clients and must be especially discreet that I am carrying concealed. The reason I have two is simply because my manner of dress at my home office is much more casual than my manner of dress when meeting with clients.

I work as a consultant in Network Security and as such on some rare occasions when I am meeting with government clients as opposed to commercial clients I must be aware of the “carry polices” of the facilities I am going to. Some government buildings you cannot obviously carry a weapon. This is why I still carry a full EDC everywhere I go, at work or not when not prevented from doing so by obvious regulations or laws.

At home I can dress anyway I like, but try not to dress around my carry gun because I feel it kind of gives it away. Anyone trying to wear a concealment in the middle of August in Arizona is not only going to hate life, but they are going to look obvious that they are carrying a concealed weapon. So I don’t dress around my gun, but I still carry everyday and I find a way to carry enough gun.

Work Everyday Carry

As I mentioned before, at work I have to tailor my EDCs to work in a various scenarios from commercial buildings to DOD subcontractors to quasi government agencies. I also try to avoid having large bulges that can either be major tells or anything that could turn into an awkward question. Carrying with khakis and a polo shirt is possible, and there numerous inside-the-waistband holsters that are tuckable out there.

Defend Yourself Against Lowlife Criminal Scum!

Personally this doesn’t work for me because of the amount of time I’m on the road. I want something that is both comfortable and easy to draw from. A tuckable inside-the-waistband holster is neither of these once I’m in a vehicle. In the passenger seat of my vehicle is a Sportsman’s laptop case that for most people looks more like a range bag. In the side pouch, is a Para USA Black Ops Recon Hi-cap .45 ACP that sits in a Kydex holster. This is my car gun, it’s instantly accessible with the case next to me on the passenger seat and big enough to fight with. The case also has many D rings as well as three removal side pouches for cell phone tactical light and tactical folder with most people none the wiser just thinking I have a computer laptop case with me.


The Para USA Black Ops Recon Hi-cap .45 ACP stays in the case and has been carried into various client offices including board rooms of mid-market companies of some very recognizable company names that for obvious reasons I am not going to disclose. On my body I’ve taken to carrying an H&K USP Compact in a belly band by DeSantis. The gun is stretching the max size the band is designed for but still fits well. The band has multiple different pockets for different items but I prefer just to use it to carry the gun and an extra magazine.

The band is comfortable enough for all day wear, even on bare skin. I usually do keep a shirt between my skin and the band. I feel this makes the band even more comfortable and is another layer to absorb sweat.

Flashlights, Pocket Knives, Etc.

For my on-body flashlight I’ve been very happy with my Surefire E2 Defender. This is a single light that is made of a strong aluminum. The tip features a glass breaker that could definitely make a potent point if you to jam it into somebody. The light is very well made and has suffered plenty of abuse in the last six months of being carried. The little light has a clip like any normal pen and clips on my pocket and rides there all day. In my bag I keep a Surefire M6 Guardian which has a 250/500 Lumen output that can “light up the night” in any place or facility late at night in the dark where I might be at. Surefire is one of the very first prime contractors that began providing the military with weapon mounted lights that was used extensively in the caves in Afghanistan.


Carrying a pocket knife can be a tedious adventure. I would love to carry one like I carry my E2 Defender and just clip it to my pocket and let it ride all day. Pocket knives can actually make people quite uncomfortable, though, and openly displaying one could be taken as unprofessional.

I do carry a Gerber Diesel, which is a huge multi-tool in my bag. It’s very strong and chock full of tools. Gerber is a brand I’ve trusted for a long time and always had one on me while I was overseas. When the weather is a little cooler in Arizona during the winter months and I can wear a leather jacket I carry my SOG Trident clipped to the inside pocket of my jacket. This is a great tactical folder that was designed by an ex Navy SEAL.

Of course, I have the normal things like everyone else. I carry a cell phone, and I keep a car charger and spare wall charger in my bag. I carry a lighter, not because I smoke anymore, but a flame is always handy. I also keep some form of local maps printed out in case my GPS fails.

I also keep a change of socks in the bag, odd I know, but until you’ve accidentally stepped in a puddle and had to work 12 hours with wet feet you may not understand.

Off Work EDC

Ah the comfort of jeans and a T-shirt. There is really nothing better than a beat up old Led Zeppelin shirt you’ve had since high school that your wife hates with a passion. Combine that with a pair of well-worn Levi’s and you might as well be in pajamas. My off-work wardrobe is built on comfort and so is my holster.

I carry a Nate Squared Tactical holster. I carry the original model and it’s so extremely comfortable. I love Nate Squared. I love the fact they are an American-made holster and just so comfortable. I carry either my USP Compact .45 ACP or my Para USA Black Ops Recon Hi-cap .45 ACP the Original model actually works for both. I usually prefer the Black Ops Recon because it’s a little bigger and I carry a 14 round magazine in it, which is six more than my USP Compact. My loose-fitting clothes make the weapon easier to conceal than my work clothes.

I carry a SOG Trident folding knife, clipped to my pocket. I like the SOG Trident knives because they are extremely durable and capable knives. They are very robust, but also lightweight. This model’s blade comes just under 3.5 inches, has an “assisted” speed opening feature, a cutout on the handle that exposes the blade which is protected but allows for cutting para-cord which was an original feature by the ex Nave SEAL which designed the knife in the first place. I hate the bulk of carrying a multi tool like the Diesel and rarely have a need for one when I’m not working, so I stick to the lightweight knife.

For a flashlight I keep with the same Surefire E2 Defender light I use for work carry. I find the little Surefire quite likable and easy to carry. I don’t have much need for something bulkier or even brighter like the Surefire M6 Guardian in most cases out with the wife on personal activities.

So this is my EDC, nothing too extremely expensive or high speed, but everything is functional and durable. Reliability and durability are two of the biggest considerations I put to my EDC. I also prefer lightweight and small items, instead of filling my pockets with a duty belt.

Check out these related articles:

Concealed Weapon under Clothing

How To Make Use Of Improvised Weapons

Are You Carrying The Right Survival Knife For You?

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*This article has been written by Jack Graff and shared with permission*



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