I Carry: Smith & Wesson Model 43C Revolver in an ANR Design Holster

by Braxton Taylor

Firearm: Smith & Wesson Model 43C (MSRP: $759)

We’ve gone with a somewhat unorthodox choice for today’s kit in the Smith & Wesson model 43C. For starters, it’s an eight-shot .22LR, which wouldn’t be my first choice for a concealed-carry pistol, but there are plenty of folks out there that prefer the simplicity of a revolver for a number of reasons. The rimfire chambering, again, not ideal as a defensive round, might appeal to shooters who have extreme aversion to recoil. To reiterate, this wouldn’t be my choice, but for the folks out there who wouldn’t carry otherwise, eight rounds of .22 LR beats, as the movie quote goes, harsh language.

I happen to own one of the 360PD J-frames, and shooting even middle-of-the-road .38 Special through it is not exactly a fun experience. On the other hand, I’ve got both a Smith & Wesson model 34 kit gun and a Ruger LCR in .22 LR for training purposes, and both are extremely easy to shoot despite the two-finger grip and short sight radius. The significantly less costly .22 LR makes it easier to put more rounds downrange, too. To top it off, revolvers don’t have complicated takedown procedures when it comes time to clean them. Generally, a little bit of oil, some Hoppes No. 9 and a boresnake takes care of things; and here’s a helpful tip: A Q-tip cleans the cylinder crud out quite efficiently.

What the model 43C has going for it is simplicity. It has an internal hammer, so there’s very little to snag on the draw, and it only weighs 11.4 ounces, so it’s definitely not going to weigh you down. Overall length is 6.25 inches, height is 4.3 inches, and width is only 1.3 inches, which is pretty slim for a revolver. This is an extremely easy to conceal pistol, whether carried on the belt or in a pocket. Because it’s a standard Smith & Wesson J-frame, there’s a world of aftermarket stocks available to help the shooter fit it to their hand.

Modern .22LR defensive ammunition, like Winchester Silver Tip 37-grain hollowpoint or Federal’s 29-grain Punch flat-nose, elevate the rimfire’s performance significantly over that of the bulk-box plinking stuff that comes to mind. These are both purpose-built rimfire rounds to make the most of out the limited power of the .22 LR, and help compensate for a lack of bullet weight. Again, it’s significantly less powerful than its centerfire siblings, so proper shot placement is absolutely critical. With the more affordable rimfire, though, that’s not as tough on the wallet.

Holster: ANR Revolver Inside the Waistband holster (MSRP: $58)

We’ve chosen a small, lightweight revolver for today’s kit, and the holster to carry it should match. ANR Design’s Revolver Inside the Waistband holster is easy to conceal, light for carrying and has a plethora of options available to the concealed carrier. Single-sheet kydex construction yields a simple, strong holster that offers adjustable retention and full trigger guard coverage.

ANR makes Revolver Inside the Waistband holsters for Kimber, Ruger and Taurus revolvers in addition to the Smith & Wesson J-frame model we have in today’s kit. A wide number of color offerings and patterns are available for a slight upcharge, and the belt attachment options include a soft loop and DCC monoblock clip. A wing is also available to help tuck the rig into the body to aid concealment, and holsters are available for left- and right-handed shooters.

Accessory: Nebo Mycro flashlight (MSRP: $39.99)

Since we’re clearly going for a minimalist effect with today’s kit, the last piece has to fit in, right? That’s where the Nebo Mycro keychain flashlight works perfectly. Smaller than the keyfob for your daily driver, the Mycro offers up to 400 lumens, available either as a push-and-hold on or continuous, depending on which button is depressed. Press the raised button marked with “N” and full power is on as long as you hold it down; press the flush black button to turn the light on high and then cycle through the settings.

The Mycro actually offers six modes total: Turbo, which has 400 lumens for 30 seconds; High, with 150 lumens, has a run time of one hour; the medium setting offers 50 lumens and can run for 2 hours and low, which has 15 lumens and can run up to 5 hours. There are also green and red lamps for low-light illumination that won’t significantly impact your night vision. Best of all, the Mycro uses an internal battery that uses a standard micro-USB port to recharge. All this for about the price of a box of premium ammo.

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