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Origin of the IDPA vest?

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I've shot a bit of IDPA and actually own a vest, but in the spirit of a defensive pistol association are vests something a concealed carrier would actually wear in other than an open carry state? It seems like trick clothing when in the real world concealed carry folks seem to work either with actual normal clothes or trick stuff that looks like regular clothing.

What's the history here? Anyone know?

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As a wild guess, I'd say it came about because in warm weather people didn't want to wear a full sized coat or jacket and a vest was cooler ???

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As a wild guess, I'd say it came about because in warm weather people didn't want to wear a full sized coat or jacket and a vest was cooler ???

Right, but folks CC in all sorts of climates: light undershirt and short sleeve polo or button/snap shirt. Certainly wouldn't cost anymore than buying a vest and more realistic.

I suspect it's safety related. Vests, weighted or otherwise are very easy to get out of the way and barely impede the draw. Real cover garments not so much so. In the end I guess it's just a game.

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There was shooter in the early days named Timmy. After besting a photographer in an arm wrestling match, he wore the vest proudly as a trophy. His tacticoolness and manliness became an inspiration for all shooters. And the legend grows.

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I actually have a vest that I use for CC when the weather is right. No, I don't shoot IDPA any more, and it's not a 5.11 tactical vest (it's a Carhartt) :ph34r:

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There was shooter in the early days named Timmy. After besting a photographer in an arm wrestling match, he wore the vest proudly as a trophy. His tacticoolness and manliness became an inspiration for all shooters. And the legend grows.

Tell Timmy I want my vest back....... :D:D

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I wonder the same, was IDPA founded by the paparazzi? I do wear a vest when the weather warrant but not for any actual concealment purposes (yes it does help but nor the main method). My guess would be as mentioned previously, safety reasons - and possibly for a consistent concealment method for scoring purposes.

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As the OP I feel abused:), but I have learned something very important. Best concealed carry garment in the spirit of hiding in plain sight is an IDPA vest. What idiot would actually carry in one of those?

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IDPA is one of the few times I carry concealed, and the only time I do so with that silly 5.11 vest.

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I think the vest being cooler than a coat or button down shirt is the deal mostly. It's safer than a t shirt for new shooters as it snags less also. idpa is the scariest thing ever with a new shooter. They're living in a concealed carry fantasyland and then the buzzer goes off casting them into suspended disbelief as they engage with extreme prejudice the cardboard boxes flattened to stakes a few feet away. Foaming at the mouth and sweating profusely they fumble through their reloads tactically maneuvering through the stage. Scanning after having expended their last precious cartridges they await their position being overrun before reinforcements can arrive and as they silently pray to see the coming dawn, the RO says, "If finished unload and show clear."

Now you tell me vest and OWB holster or tshit and IWB?

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I've shot IDPA for a long time;

Since the beginning, I always felt the gamer vests stood out, clearly in conflict with the "no competition only" equipment rules.

Probably my misunderstanding; I thought they might somehow be stiffer to expedite the draw, hell I thought guys put the barney mag or spare gear in pockets so the vest would swing open a little better, maybe some thought it quicker to stow a mag in a wider pocket! I guess I thought all of this because I never saw any of the vests on any of the shooters, on them other than when they shot. In the summer, they carry it from stage to stage and between strings.

That is until now;

Now, I know the legend of Timmie. The vests are an awesome tribute! I like the way they have become almost a badge or defacto uniform showing IDPA members' reverence for Timmie's courage and good fortune.

Hey, did I read somewhere that Timmie, until the time of his 15 minutes of fame, was just a regular guy? A plumber if I read correctly...

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Hey, did I read somewhere that Timmie, until the time of his 15 minutes of fame, was just a regular guy? A plumber if I read correctly...

Timmy was not actually a plumber. He used that excuse to explain the remnants of an accident he had when the buzzer went off.

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I shoot a vest in IDPA competition. It even has the name of my pistol team on it. However, I doubt seriously if I would ever wear a vest for concealment on the streets... unless of course, I had a camera around my neck or a fishing rod in my hand.

Lacking those, a vest kinda screams "Shoot Me First".

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I have two vests. The first I bought from Concealed Carry Clothiers for daily carry long before I learned of IDPA. http://concealedcarry.com/products/Tropic-Concealment-Vest.html but mine is Navy in color. It is great in spring and fall when a shirt isn't enough but a jacket is too hot.

The second I got in 2007 Nationals as part of the match staff clothes package from Eotech. I wear them about equally on the street this time of year, and the Eotech in IDPA because of the pockets. It has been died to a maroon color.

I'm not one to put patches on my clothing or decals or bumper stickers on my vehicles though. So they are plain vests.

In the winter I use a Carhart or leather bomber jacket for work and concealment. But IWB is easy to conceal even with a short jacket.

The super stiff vests with no closure in the front and a completely vented back have caught on even with prices over $100.

It would be hard to write a rule that allowed actual carry vests and outlaw the competition only vests.

Edited by freeidaho

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I think the FBI and Secret Service were wearing them before IDPA was created. Not sure though. I know that I had a Cabelas vest before IDPA.

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"Lassie, Lassie.....what is it girl? Timmy fell down the well...... at least he had his vest on."

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Back before we could open carry in my long-time conceal carry state a number of us wanted some BBQ after the IDPA match. We left the gear on along with loaded guns and mags. We topped it with our vests. No BBQ sauce was spilled in the writing of this reply or at the BBQ joint that day.

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From say 2003-2007 how many PMC's did you see doing PSD work wearing a 5.11 vest? Hundreds. If it works for the pros, why not let the Joes try it. Oh wow, they discovered it's faster than what they'd been doing before. If a little more expensive and a little different looking for everyday wear in the US.

Hmm, the timer measures down to 1/100th of a second. So I guess it does matter if I can be a little faster. Vest it is! Rather than t-shirt, bdu top, Hawaiian shirt, wind breaker, ect.

Scores being kept. The "real world" is purely imaginary in IDPA. The sooner a person accepts this, the better off they will be.

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OP, IDPA does not equal real world, it equals a game, with lots and lots of rules, timed and scored. Of course a Tee shirt is slower to draw from, just like a Hawaiian. The vest is more of a bat wing garment for the game.

By the way, if IDPA was real, why not allow appendix IWB holsters? It is allowed in USPSA Open, Limited and Limited 10 division because holster position is not restricted. USPSA is not real either....

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I use a dedicated vest because it gets dirty with gun crime, and I don't want that on my street clothes. People who complain that the vest isn't "real world" seem to forget that IDPA is a GAME. Hence rules, a clock and scoring.

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OP, IDPA does not equal real world, it equals a game, with lots and lots of rules, timed and scored. Of course a Tee shirt is slower to draw from, just like a Hawaiian. The vest is more of a bat wing garment for the game.

By the way, if IDPA was real, why not allow appendix IWB holsters? It is allowed in USPSA Open, Limited and Limited 10 division because holster position is not restricted. USPSA is not real either....

You are bringing way too much logic to the table. Agreed that the vest is easier to whack back for drawing and IDPA is a game with some different rules from USPSA. You can "game" the vest by choosing the appropriate vest and putting some thin shooting gloves in the pocket ("legally" adding some weight to help when whacking it back). Also agree about the IWB holster prohibition in IDPA. If you spend some time researching Bill Wilson, Ken H, LAV, et. al. you can learn a lot about why IDPA developed. It was "marketed" differently. Bill Wilson recently asserted in a Ballistic magazine article (can competitive match skills can help you survive?) that NRA Bullseye and Bianchi Cup, Steel Challenge, and 3-Gun events not so much. He also argued that IDPA was preferable to IPSC/USPSA for learning survival skills (". . . many of the skills needed to perform well at an IDPA match directly translate to the real world . . ."). He neglected to mention that he owns (owned?) IDPA. IDPA's market is different from USPSA and 3-Gun. Wilson's friends (Ken H. and LAV) offer classes that are quite different than those offered by top USPSA shooters. Frank Proctor (Army vet and USPSA GM) gave the better answer in the magazine article (and he did not give the same preference to IDPA that Wilson did). The vest is just an accoutrement for the game (does LAV make students wear a vest during training? Hmmm).

Edited by Steppenwolf

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8.5.1.11 Must be positioned on the belt so that the center of the trigger pad is behind the centerline of the

body.

It would be hard to pass this rule with appendix carry.

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