Kahr Arms has long been one of the industry leaders in the compact pistol market. In addition to manufacturing a broad range of best-of-breed guns in a variety of calibers, the company truly understands the needs of its customers and goes the extra mile to meet them. This is clearly evident when you look at the accessory section of its web site. Beyond the usual trinkets and apparel bearing the company logo, you’ll find a broad range of holsters for Kahr guns manufactured by some of the premier holster makers in the industry. Rather than letting its customers fend for themselves when it comes to carry options, Kahr has cherry picked some of the best aftermarket accessories for its guns and literally “done the homework” for Kahr pistol owners. In the process, the company has also created a one-stop-shopping solution for holsters guaranteed to fit it’s pistols.

When I added a CW380 to my collection, I immediately visited the Kahr website to find suitable holster options. One carry solution it offered that immediately piqued my interest was a “neck holster” from a company called Stellar Rigs. Custom molded from Kydex thermoplastic, the Neck Chain Holster is designed to hang from a ball chain (a heavy duty dog-tag chain) so the pistol rides on the upper chest in a horizontal orientation.

A number of years ago, I had the privilege of shooting and producing a number of instructional videos with Kelly McCann. One of the most extraordinary close-combat trainers in the industry, McCann served as the U.S. Marine Corps counterterrorism officer and counternarcotics officer and has years of hard-earned special operations experience around the world. While visiting his house, I noticed a shadowbox-style table in his living room containing memorabilia from his operational career. One of the most unique pieces was a .32 Seecamp pistol paired with a neck chain that was attached to a .38 cleaning brush. When I asked Kelly about it, he explained that it was the preferred last-ditch weapon for one of his special operations units. By inserting the oversized bore brush in the muzzle, the gun could be suspended discreetly around the neck. The long, deliberate Seecamp trigger pull prevented an accidental discharge and the unique carry method allowed the gun to be drawn and used swiftly with either hand.

Seeing the Neck Chain Holster reminded me of Kelly’s story. I’m also a long-time fan of neck knives, so I decided to give it a try. After using it for several months, I’m very impressed with it and the potential of neck holsters as a concealed-carry platform.

The Stellar Rigs holster is molded out of .093-inch Kydex and features a clamshell-style design that grips the slide and triggerguard of the pistol very securely, yet leaves the grip well exposed. To draw, you simply achieve a solid three-finger grip and, keeping your trigger finger straight, pull downward. The grip end of the pistol cams the clamshell construction of the holster open and the gun is quickly and safely in your hand and ready to go.

Quick To Action

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Use your support hand to lift your cover garment up and away from your body to ensure a solid pre-draw grip and draw the pistol out.

The Neck Chain Holster conceals amazingly well below a loose-fitting, reasonably substantial shirt. Sweatshirts, hoodies and light jackets work even better, easily obscuring the outline of the holster to prevent printing. The breakaway ball chain spreads the weight of the gun comfortably across the back of your neck and, unlike paracord, does not provide an attacker with a ready-made garrote. Since it doesn’t rely on pockets, belts, waistbands or any of the other traditional carry “platforms,” the Neck Chain Holster works perfectly with any style of pants or shorts and, for the ladies, even skirts.

Like any other holster, the mechanics of drawing from the Neck Chain Holster should be integrated with proper tactics to keep you protected during the process. To draw with the right hand, I hook the front of my cover garment with my left hand and lift it up to about solar-plexus level while pulling it away from my body. Reaching my right hand under the garment, I achieve a solid grip on the pistol. At this point, I release the garment with my left and continue the motion of that arm up, anchoring my left palm just above the same-side eyebrow. This creates a solid guard to protect my head and neck, and raises my elbow and upper arm to shoulder level so I don’t muzzle flash that arm as I draw. As I do this, I typically turn my shoulders to “blade” my body so the guard is forward and my weapon side is back. Pulling down on the gun allows it to clear the holster with the muzzle already oriented toward the threat. When my gun hand clears the bottom of the garment, I can either anchor it in a solid weapon-retention position or flow into an extended one- or two-hand shooting platform.

Because this draw is initiated with the support hand, you must of course make sure you’ve created a safe opportunity to lower your hands. Against a contact-distance attack, practice prefacing your draw with unarmed combative skills that allow you to fend, strike and create distance or a positional advantage before initiating your draw.

Vehicle Versatility

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In addition to providing a primary carry option, another great application for the Neck Chain Holster is as a platform for a backup gun, especially when seated in a vehicle. Conventional belt and IWB carries are typically rendered useless as soon as you sit in a car and buckle your seat belt. This makes drawing while in the car incredibly difficult and, against a carjacker or other threat entering from the passenger side of the front seat, leaves your gun hand extremely vulnerable as you draw. Even if you do manage to get your gun out, shooting with your right hand is very difficult because of the unorthodox angles required to hit worthwhile targets.

Conversely, a small pistol riding in a Neck Chain Holster can be oriented to point to the right for easy access with the left hand. The draw from this carry position is much less restricted by the seat belt and, once drawn, the gun is positioned well away from an assailant in the passenger seat.

Neck carry is a uniquely different “out-of-pocket” approach to concealing a compact pistol. It is not suitable for every small gun, nor is it appropriate for every physique, but it is certainly worthy of consideration. Like any other carry method, make sure you invest the time and effort to integrate it with your style of dress, daily habits and preferred tactics to see if it works for you.

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This article was published in ‘Concealed Carry Handguns’ 2016. For information on how to subscribe, please email [email protected] or call 1-800-284-5668.

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