Carry Permit On-line Resources

There is a ton of on-line information for carry permit holders.  Vlogs/Blogs, social media groups, podcasts, forums, manufacturer and retailer websites, YouTube channels, you name it.  All covering anything from how to pick that carry firearm to the next big deal in tacticool underpants.   I won’t go into that last bit but I’ve thrown a list of a few resources together that will hopefully point you in the right direction when looking for information on carrying a defensive weapon.

Legislative Resources

Bad information can get you in trouble.  Don’t get your legal advice from Facebook or the like, your best resource for carry permit law is the on-line legislative library and carry permit resources for your state or the state which you are traveling to or through.  Chandler’s is Minnesota based but our training is also recognized for Wisconsin and Florida permits, listed below are some resources for carry permit holders in these states:

Along with your state resources, there are a number of organizations that provide a bit more user friendly representation of the statutes (our legislators seem to have a language all their own) as well as reciprocity maps for your carry permit.  Legislation can change every year, make sure that the information you are getting is up to date.  If it’s more than a year or two old, verify the information with your legislative resources.

You’ll also find a number of local and national Second Amendment advocacy groups that  not only fight for your rights at those levels but will keep you informed of any proposed legislation that might infringe on your right to protect yourself and your loved ones.   If you are not a member of at least one of these groups, you should be.

Use Of Force

Nothing is more critical and can cause more confusion than the rules justifying use of force or use of deadly force.   One of the foremost authorities on the subject is Massad Ayoob.  He has been training law enforcement, military and and private citizens in the defensive use of deadly force since the early 80’s, founded 2 training organizations, authored a few dozen books, hundreds of articles and been an expert witness in countless defensive shooting trials.  Some of his on-line articles are listed below, I’d also check out his  books In the Gravest Extreme: The Role of the Firearm in Personal Protection and Deadly Force – Understanding Your Right to Self Defense.

Attorney Andrew Branca has also written an excellent book, The Law of Self Defense that goes into the legal aftermath of defensive use of force.  Andrew also has a number of interviews listed on his website where he has explained how the use of force laws are applied in court.  I highly recommend checking out his blog and picking up a copy of his book.

Other On-Line Resources

Social Media

Before facebook lost it’s mind and started banning/shutting down gun related pages, there were a large number of firearm groups where you could find all kinds of information on just about any gun you could imagine.  When facebook went on their anti-gun craze a lot of those groups moved to other social media platforms like the United Gun Group, MeWe, Weapons Feed as well as various home-grown sites.  However, since facebook is still the king of social media many of the group members never dropped it completely and many of these groups migrated back to facebook out of convenience.


YouTube is an invaluable resource.  If you’re looking for gun reviews, modification How-To’s, detailed disassembly/reassembly instructions or “How do I fix this thing I just broke,” someone has probably needed the same information and made a video about it.  Below are just a few of the recent searches and channels I’ve followed:

Podcasts, Forums and Blogs

Podcasts are a great way to keep up to date on gear, gun reviews, training ideas, etc.  I usually listen to them during that 1hr+ commute that would otherwise be wasted listening to the local talk radio and getting angry over local politics.

Blogs are everywhere.  Training ideas, gear and gun reviews, you name it.  Run a search and you will find lists of blogs covering exactly what you were looking for.  One I frequent is by  over at Active Response Training.  Greg is a great guy and puts out excellent information, I highly recommend checking him out and signing up for his updates.

Forums took a bit of a hit during the explosion of social media but lately seem to be coming back in fashion.  I’ve always enjoyed the forums and to be honest, forums are my main resource for getting the skinny on what is going on in the industry.   Not unlike facebook or the tweeter, you can get an app that will follow multiple forums and make it easy to post and stay up to date from your phone.  I rarely access my forums from a computer anymore, even when I am sitting right in front of it.  Here are a few I find myself hitting the most:

On-line Retailers, Firearm and Parts Manufacturers

On-line retailers and firearm manufacturers have discovered the value of providing extra information for their on-line customers.  Below are a couple of on-line vendors that not only have a great selection of products but provide some very good information on anything from mounting a scope to building out your own AR.

  • Midway USA – Look for their Knowledge Center at the bottom of their page.
  • Brownells – Check out their “Learn” section.

Weeding Through the Garbage 

Keep in mind that a lot of what you read on-line, with the exception of state legislative resources, is really just someone else’s opinion (my grandpa had a saying about opinions…) and sometimes that “someone” may not be all that well informed.  Not a big deal if we’re talking about those tacticool underpants but when it comes to legal advice, don’t believe everything you read on Facebook, etc.  If something sounds sketchy, it probably is.  Make sure you check multiple resources and verify you are getting the correct information.


To “conceal” or “not conceal” that is the question

To conceal or not conceal that is the question. 

The MCPPA certainly allows for you to carry your firearm in an open carry mode or concealed, I believe in this right and I support it as a personal choice, but from my own experience carrying concealed is the best option in most situations.

Experts agree it is easier/faster to retrieve your firearm from an open carry position, and I agree, however with proper equipment and practice, drawing from concealment is efficient and the benefits outweigh the slightly faster retrieval times for open carry.


While carrying openly may deter some threats to your safety, I believe more often than not, carrying openly attracts those threats that think they can get your firearm away from you and cause more harm. I also have found that the attention that open carry attracts from private citizens is largely those that want to express their belief that you should not be allowed to carry your firearm period, the teachable moment with citizens that have questions related to carrying are few and far between.


I may be shy and avoid attention in most situations, and this may also be why I appreciate the anonymity that comes with carrying concealed: citizens, security officers, law enforcement I’d just as soon as they all not give me a second look, and if that person that decides to try and do me harm, is surprised by my armed response to their attempt to do me physical harm, all the better.
Don’t get me wrong, I fully support your right to choose how you carry your firearm, but for me, it will be concealed….most of the time.



The “Popcorn Shooting” and Stand Your Ground

Andrew Branca, attorney, author of The Law of Self Defense and contributor at Legal Insurrection has posted a great article about how Stand Your Ground does not apply in the “Popcorn Shooting” hearings.  If you’re not familiar with this incident, it involves an altercation between two men in a theater that resulted in one of them being shot and killed.  I haven’t been following the case and it’s not the case that made Branca’s article interesting.  However, he does a great job outlining use of force and stand your ground and how it is applied to a legal defense.  Give the article a read and check out some of his other posts.  I’d also recommend visiting his site and signing up for his weekly newsletter.

Curtis-Reeves-Popcorn-Shooting-Hearing-e1487709608930“Popcorn Shooting” Defendant Has Self-Defense Immunity Hearing
Posted by Andrew Branca Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Ladies, What should you wear to the range?

What to wear?
Let’s face it ladies, we ask ourselves this question WAY more then the men. I will be the first to admit that 99% of the time I live in jeans and a t-shirt, it’s just easy and comfortable. But, there is that 1% of me that is all girl, likes to wear heels, get my nails/hair done and to be, “all done up” every now and then. So when it comes to picking out what to wear to the range, believe it or not there are some tips I can give you.

First, two things you are going to need to invest in are: hearing protection and safety glasses, aka “eyes and ears”. Now most ranges will provide these to you (free) with your range fee, but keep in mind that they are “public use equipment.” They will clean/disinfect them, but do you really want someone else’s ear sweat on your head if you don’t have to? These are also items that you can pick up fairly cheap.

These safety glasses are from Walmart and cost $1.89 Want to order them online? Here ya go: Safety Glasses

Saferty GlassesNext, you will want to invest in some hearing protection, (remember we don’t like other peoples ear sweat)! There are many options out there. The foam ear plugs work just fine, but I find that after awhile they make my ears hurt. (I don’t like things stuck in my ears!) But these are cheap and often times come in bulk so you get more “bang” for your buck.  Sorry, bad pun!  You can buy a pack of 200 pairs for $23.00 – that’s lots of trips to the range. Foam Ear Plugs


Foam ear plugsMy personal favorite, and what I would recommend to you is what is called, “electronic hearing protection.” These offer more loud noise protection to your hearing then the foam plugs.  And when you are shooting, they allow you to be able to still hear people talking, and when the noise reaches a certain decibel they will “remove” that noise from what you can hear.  These come in all sorts of options, pink, grey, blue, leopard print, zebra print etc.  I found this cute pair of purple ones online for $21.99. Electronic Hearing ProtectionHearing protectionOkay, now that you have your “eyes and ears” for the range let’s get back to the all important question: What am I going to wear?  Let’s start from the bottom and work our way up.

Your feet: You are going to want to wear shoes that COVER your feet, no flip flops, no sandals, no open toed shoes.  You are just asking for a piece of hot brass (the spent casing coming from your gun, or your neighbors) to land on your foot/toes.  This casing is HOT, I mean really HOT and it will burn you! Keep in mind that the floor is also going to have empty casing, these could cause you to slip, lose your balance to just slide/roll underfoot, not he time to be in your favorite 3 inch heels.  Personally I wear my tennis shoes, easy on/easy off and if I want to bring my “cute” shoes with my I can just as easily change in the car. Open Toed shoesFlip Flopsshoes

Next, your legs, WEAR PANTS!!! I can’t tell you how many times I cringe when I see a lady at the range in shorts, or a short skirt, you are just asking to get burned. I understand that in the Summer not everyone lives in jeans like I do, but this is not the place to leave your legs exposed.  I will even give you a “pass” on wearing Capri’s, but please don’t wear shorts!

Lastly, you are going to want to make sure that the “girls” are protected.  This means NO tank tops, low cut shirts or v-neck style shirts.  You think a hot piece of bass hitting your foot/toe or leg is going to be bad;  I can tell you from personal experience that hot brass down your shirt is MUCH, MUCH worse!!

I was at an outdoor range, it was a beautiful Summer day, the sun was shining, I was shooting and life couldn’t get much better.  But, I was in a tank top, (actually 2 of them, I like the layered look) not spaghetti straps and not over exposing the girls, just a run of the mill Target tank top. (the one pictured below) I was covered up, or so I thought.  You see ladies, even if you are covered, when you put your hands together and drive them out in front of you (pretend your holding a gun), you are automatically pushing the girls together and creating a “valley” for things to fall into.  And that is exactly what happened to me.  I had already fired about 200 rounds that day, everything was going fine, until . . . .a piece of hot brass hit the side wall bouncing off and by some freak chance, landed right in that img-thingwomens-v-neck-t-shirts-shipped-for-free“valley.” Now I will be honest this whole situation only took about 2.5 seconds, but to me it was a life time.  Here I am, loaded firearm in hand, and I can smell my own flesh burning.   As fast as I could, I dropped the magazine out of my firearm, racked and locked back the slide, dropped my firearm on the range table and went to retrieve that hot piece of brass.  But sadly, it was to late, I was burned and not just burned, I already had a blister!!  Well, two to be exact, one on each of the “girls”.  Needless to say this was the first and last time that I went to the range in a tank top.  See why I love my t-shirts so much?

Here is what you want.  To be covered, plain and simple.

Any exposed skin you leave will run the risk of being hit with hot brass.  I know some of you are thinking to yourselves, “If she is in a t-shirt, her arms are exposed.” And you are right.  I am taking that risk of being burned, but I can also quickly “shake off” brass on my arm, other places not so much! And hot brass hitting my arm is going to tend to bounce off me, minimizing the amount of heat that my body can absorb.  This may seems silly, but what you wear to the range can and does affect your safety. It is a natural reaction when you are in pain (hot brass/being burned) that you do what you can immediately to fix/remove that issue.  The reality is that you have a LOADED firearm in your hand, this is NOT the time to forget the 4 universal safety rules.

I hear and read stories all the time about people who get hot brass somewhere is shouldn’t be, and their natural reaction is to get it and quick!! They forget they have a loaded firearm in their hand, and end up shooting something they don’t want to.  You don’t have to take my word on that, here are just a few articles I found by Google-ing, “Hot brass and accidental discharge.”

Father shoots son

Women Shoots her self after hot brass goes down shirt

I just shot my fiance

Now, I am not saying that you have to go to the range looking like a bum, or covered from head to toe so that the only thing seen is your eyes.  I am saying, “DON’T BE THAT LADY AT THE RANGE!!” Make sure you take steps to keep your skin (and the girls) from getting burned.  Save the cute new heels, blouse and skirt for girls night or a hot date.  Stay safe and “carry on!”

PS I will share a secret with you, all the guys at the range already think you’re hot in jeans and a t-shirt.  Your a lady, you are at the range and you are shooting a gun.  No man can resist!!

Women’s Carry Options – That don’t include a belt!

For those of you that don’t know me, I am the Women’s Only Permit to Carry Instructor here at Chandler’s.  I often get women in classes who say, “I don’t like to wear a belt, what other options to I have to carry?”

Well today I would like to share some of those options with you, and some of my own personal pro’s and con’s on them.

First one that I would like to start with you is the conceal and carry purse, (this is also know as “off body carry” as the firearm isn’t attached somehow to your person).  I will admit when I took my own permit to carry course back in 2012, (before becoming an instructor) I WAS PSYCHED to carry this way! I LOVE handbags and purses and this was a great excuse to go buy a new one. In my class I asked my instructor, “what do you think of purse carry?”  He looked at me and with a very serious look on his face says, “What are you going to do when they steal your purse?” I will admit in that moment I was totally defeated.  That thought had never crossed my mind.  Not only are they going to have my (super cool) carry purse, they also get my firearm, car keys and my driver’s license which has my home address on it. Bummer.

I personally wouldn’t carry this way unless it was the only option I had for the day. BUT, I am not against purse carry – if this is the only way I can get you to carry your firearm EVERYDAY then do it!  A firearm that you leave at home is never going to protect you. I will also share a secret with you all, this is the only way I can get my Mom to carry everyday.  So I do believe that it has it’s advantages.  You will just need to be more mindful of where your purse is all the time!! Don’t leave it in the front of the shopping cart and then walk 5 ft away. Don’t set it on the floor at someone house when they have small children that might be able to get into it. Don’t leave it on the passenger seat of your vehicle when you are pumping gas with all the doors unlocked.  You will need to keep that purse on you (I would recommend a “cross body style”) all the times.

With all that said I want to share a website with you that has a plethora of handbags – all of which are meant for the purpose of carrying your firearm.

This website is amazing, they have everything that you could ever dream of: Hobo style, Cross body, Leather bags, in every shape, size and color you could imagine.  Happy shopping, don’t say I didn’t warn you!

Conceal PurseHandbag Handbag2

Next is the “Flash Bang Holster.” The gun world is trying ladies, they really are.  They want to come up with a way to get you to carry, this one just wasn’t thought out very well.

The Flash Bang Holster is meant to hold a small firearm, clipped to the center of your bra, and neatly tucked into one of the cups. Now when I think about carrying this way – universal gun safety rule #2 jumps to mind. “Never point the firearmFlash Bang Holster at something you are not prepared to destroy.” I am NOT okay with having a firearm pointed at one of my “girls!”  Sadly, there have also been a number of “accidental shootings” with this holster when women try to adjust it. Here is just one example for you.

This holster might seem like a good idea, but in the big picture of firearms and safety this one gets a BIG thumbs down from me.

Now here is one that I really like – leggings!!! I will tell you that I received a pair of these for Christmas in 2016 and they are not only comfortable, hold the firearm well in place, but they are made of good high quality material that helps “hold the rest of you in” too!

Original Concealed Carry Leggings-3/4 Length

Conceal LeggingsRight now they only come in black, but do come in 3/4 or full length and also have a left or right hand options.

I have carried with these leggings and had no issues.  There is an elastic strap that will go over the grip of your firearm to hold it in place.  I was able to run errands for the day (multiple times in and out of the SUV), went grocery shopping, and took the dog for a walk, all with my Glock 43 tucked neatly behind me.

I will point out that I am not a fan of the “front holster pocket.” Again, with universal gun safety rule #2 – I don’t want my firearm in the front pocket, pointed at my Femoral Artery.  If I were to have an accidental discharge of that firearm, that round is going right into that artery.  So, when I wear these, the firearms is always in the rear/back holster.  Which then leaves the front holster open for an extra magazine, my cell phone or anything else.  I recommend these in my classes too! With the rise in popularity of the leggings/yoga pants among women it’s only going to be a matter of time until these come in other color options and styles.

Here is another option for you – but one I want you to think about before you run out and buy. The “Girdle Holster.” These come in every size and color combo that you can think of, I have even seen ones that come in camo!  While I think this holster has potential, it also has some draw backs.  Carrying this way, you areHolster (again) pointing that firearm at your Femoral Artery – not a good option.  But with the multiple pockets, it will allow you to carry your firearm on one side, and an extra magazine on the other – that is a win!  If you are giving this holster some serious thought, I recommend that you spin the whole thing around.  This will then put your firearm on your back, still allowing you quick access, but having it pointed in a much safer direction!


One last holster I want to share with you (and my personal favorite) is the ankle holster.  Simple, effective and discrete! This holster is a win for me for a couple of reasons. In the summer (I usually never wear shorts) it allows me to wear jeans, and a tank top or other tight fitted style shirt, and no one is looking at my ankle to see if I am carrying!  I am able to still be comfortable and not have a firearm hanging on my hip.  This holster is made of Velcro – and it WILL hold the weight of your firearm – I carry my Glock 43 in this almost daily now that the weather is getting warmer.  The Velcro allows you to adjust the angle at which it sits on your leg – leaning it a little forward or backward depending on what is comfortable for you.  The large elastic band that wraps around your ankle is not scratchy, bulky, or uncomfortable to wear.  It took me maybe 5 minutes at home to get the holster set the way I liked it, and to where it didn’t “print” under my jeans.  Out the door I went – I even went shoe shopping (never taking the holster off) and no one was the wiser I was carryingAnkle Holster!

I purchased this holster from a company called Remora – here is the link to the exact one that I purchased.

They also threw in (at no cost to me) a free pair of safety classes and a free magazine holster (not to be worn on the ankle holster). But hey, who doesn’t like free gun stuff, I know I do!

I will also give you a tip about this holster – when you order it will ask if you are right or left handed. (I am right handed).  They will send you a right hand holster – but it is meant to be worn on the inside of your LEFT leg. This way, when you are carrying and need to gain access to your firearm, your left hand will pull up your pant leg, while the right hand is able to get a grip and draw the firearm with out any issues.  The straps on the grip are also Velcro, when drawing the firearm they are easy to “break apart” to remove your firearm, yet strong enough to hold it in place.

I hope that this little article gave you some good ideas and other options to carry.  Just remember when looking for a new holster or a new way to carry think about: where or what the firearms is going to be pointed at?  Are you able to draw that firearm quickly and safely from where you have it tucked? And how easy is it going to be for the “bad guy” to take my firearm if I should be involved in a physical fight with them?

So You want to take your Firearm with you on a trip and you’ll be flying. Here’s 10 tips that you need to know….


You can fly with your gun! Just be sure that you follow your airlines and TSA policy. For example.. It must be declared and checked in as checked luggage. NOT AS CARRY ON LUGGAGE. Here’s 10 tips:

  1. Buy yourself a hard lockable safe. Preferably with holes for your own keyed padlocks. Don’t misplace your keys and don’t let anyone else have possession of your keys. You may want to bring extra locks just in case they get cut.
  2. Check your airlines website and see their policies. Most are basically the same but they don’t have to be. Print out the policy and bring it with you. Not every agent will have a complete understanding of their firearm policy.
  3. Check the TSA policy website for the latest up to date info. As like many policies they do change! Print this out as well. Some TSA agents may have a different understanding of their own policy. Best to have it in black and white.
  4. Unload your firearm and magazines at home. Not at the check in desk!  You Can.. Not required.. have the actions open. You could also run a cable lock through the mag well. Safety is always a good thing.
  5. Wiegh your gun case and ammo. A lot of airlines will allow up to 11lbs of ammo. I’m sure the airline will be more than happy to charge you extra if you go over the 50lb limit! Keep in mind that the lbs can add up quick!
  6. Pack your ammo in the same case. Keep it in a container. Not just loose rolling around. Best to keep it separate from magazine even though legal, You may get asked questions.
  7. Feel free to walk up to the counter with your firearm in its CLOSED AND LOCKED  case up to the ticket agent.  Calmly tell the agent that you have a firearm to declare and she will let you know what to do and when. Sometimes you’ll be escorted to the TSA agent or a TSA will be called over to get you checked in. Do as they ask and you’ll be fine. They will have you fill out an orange declaration card. Put that in your case.
  8. Don’t be in a hurry to go to the gate after check in.  You may be asked to open your case again. Just be advised it may happen.
  9. Make sure you don’t lose your padlock keys! Keep those in your carry on bag. Any optics you may have can also go in your carry on bag. Nobody wants those bumped around!
  10. Be prepared for surprises. You may be cleared at departure and upon arrival you discover a TSA agent may have cut your locks. They aren’t supposed to but it does happen. If your firearm doesn’t make it to your destination with you, Inform the TSA agent you want to report an interstate theft of your firearm and that should get you ALOT of attention.

* Contents came from Mr. Tom McHale July 3, 2014


I GOOGLED American Airlines , Delta, and Alaska Air and all stated the same. They referred to the TSA policy. Pls do your own research before traveling and HAPPY TRAVELS!



Carry Permit Holder dealing with Law Enforcement after an incident where LE is called or summoned.


When it comes to dealing with Law Enforcement as a carry permit holder, there are some things you need to understand from the law enforcement side of the incident. The responding officers have limited information on what really happened. The only information they get is from dispatch and what the RP (caller) explained to them. When the officers arrive on scene, they are walking into the unknown. They have high adrenaline and need to focus on getting everything under control so the scene is safe. First and foremost their safety will come first. They may come off very stern and demanding, and that’s because they don’t have a clue at that moment what is going on. The officers need to investigate to understand the root of the problem or the situation. Respect their presence and follow orders as requested so they can feel safe.

As a carry permit holder involved in a situation where you used your firearm to either defend yourself or de-escalate a situation where you were in fear of death or great bodily harm. There are a few things to consider when Law Enforcement arrives at the scene. As a carry permit holder, it is best to not even have your weapon on you if possible. If you are able to secure it somewhere off of your body it is best. The officers will probably order you to the ground and or cuff you at the very least until they get the scene safe. Don’t be alarmed, its protocol to make the scene safe before they figure out why they are there in the first place. Expect to get frisked at he very least for any weapons or dangerous objects, which is why it is good to not have the gun on you anymore. If you do happen to holster up and sit tight until officers arrive. Be sure to verbally tell then that you are the victim and are a carry permit holder that is presently carrying a firearm. Have your hands visible at all times while you explain who you are and where your gun is without reaching for it what so ever. Remember to say very little of you are involved in an actual shooting. Pull out that business card we give you with the information on the back and read it to the officer and say no more.

The card reads “Officer, I respect your duties and obligations. I ask you observe all my constitutional and statutory rights. I wish to exercise every applicable constitutional and applicable right.

Specifically, I wish to remain silent. I do NOT consent to any search of my person, effects, vehicle or any premises for which I have standing to object. You may NOT question my children without myself or my spouse present.

I request that I be allowed to speak with my attorney before any further questions are asked of me or conversation attempted. I have no intention of waiving these rights no matter what inducements, promises or arguments I may be offered.”

When the officers arrive they are simply there to collect data for their reports and get the scene safe. Which means anything you say to them may be used against you in court. So, as a carry permit holder and a responsible citizen you have to understand and know your rights first and foremost. Simply exercising them is your right as a citizen. Some officers may press you a little harder just to see if you are going to stick to your requests. Don’t worry you are well within your rights to not speak with them. I think the biggest thing is being able to control and cope with what really just happened. You are going to want to spill it all out to anyone who will listen, its part of the process when dealing with a traumatic incident. The best advice I can give you is to have someone close to you that you can trust and call and talk to about what happened. You need to vent it out somehow, just not to the officers at that time. If you have a good friend or husband/wife or significant other to call to let out your thoughts. However your attorney should be the first call you are able to make after the incident.

As  carry permit holders, we need to be sure that we evaluate all the possibilities of carry a firearm for protect and the possibility of actually using it. If that day comes we need to be mentally and physically prepared for the process that is about to happen. I’ve spoke to several officers who were involved with shooting and they one thing they expressed is that the whole legal process is very long and lonely. Meaning you will be isolated away from others and family until the process is over. Which gives you plenty of time to replay your situation in your head over and over. Just remember, you did what you had to do to protect yourself or your family,  and you made the best decision in that situation because you and your family are safe and alive.


Carry on and stay safe.

Firearms and Range Safety





  1. Treat all guns as though they are ALWAYS LOADED, and always perform a clearance check every time you pick one up.
  2. Never point your weapon at anything you are not willing to destroy.
  3. Keep your finger OFF THE TRIGGER and outside the trigger guard until you are on target and have made the decision to shoot.
  4. Always be sure of your target and beyond.





  • Educate others on the 4 safety rules.
  • Know how to operate your firearm. No shame in asking somebody.
  • Never depend on safeties. Mechanical devices do fail.
  • Know how to clear your firearm.
  • When handing your firearm to others make sure the action is clear and the slide is locked back.
  • Use only correct ammunition for your firearm.
  • Never use drugs (even prescription) or alcohol prior to handling firearms.
  • Removing the magazine from a semiautomatic gun will not remove the round from the chamber.
  • Be sure the barrel is clear of obstructions before firing.
  • Never shoot at a hard flat surface or water cause the bullet can ricochet.
  • Store guns and ammunition in a cool dry place.




Be sure to wear safety glasses and hearing protection. Be aware of others around you. Know and observe the Range rules. Uncase your firearm at the firing line. Never step in front of the firing line Always follow your FOUR SAFETY RULES so you can enjoy your firearms for many years to come!


So you want to get your permit to carry.


I want a permit to carry…How do I go about doing that???

“I want to get my permit to carry… what do I have to do now?  Where do I apply?  What training do I need, do I need to get training? I saw a “Ban Guns” sign at a store, what should I do with my gun?  AHHHH, this is so overwhelming!!!”

Sound familiar? First off, take a deep breath.  These are some questions that many people have when they are applying for their permit for the first time.  Good news, you are reading an article that will help you learn what you need to know in order acquire your Minnesota and or Wisconsin Permit to Carry.  In this article we will discuss how and where to apply for your permit.  The cost involved in applying and for the renewal process.  Lastly, we will discuss some common misconceptions that permit holders may deal with.

Congratulations!! You have chosen NOT to be a victim decided to responsibly arm yourself. There are some things you will need to do prior to being able to apply for your permit to carry.  First off, you need to take a permit to carry class that is recognized by the BCA of Minnesota.  Preferably by an instructor that is certified by the NRA. Good news for you, all of the Chandler’s Firearm Training instructors are recognized by the BCA of Minnesota and certified by the NRA!!  In that class you will discuss the criteria the state requires of you. You will learn the fundamentals of pistol use.  Finally, you will learn the laws that you will need to follow if you ever find yourself in a situation that requires you to use deadly force. At the end of the classroom portion you get to head to the range to do a live fire shooting qualification…any day you get shooting time in, is a good day!

So you have passed you carry class and gotten your certificate.  Now it is time to apply for your carry permit.  If you are a resident of Minnesota, you need to go to the Sheriff’s Office of the county that you live in to apply.  If you are a non-resident to Minnesota, you can apply at any county Sheriff Office in Minnesota.  By MN law, the fees to apply for your carry permit cannot exceed $100. So most Sheriff Offices charge…drum roll please… $100!  There are, however, some counties that charge less than that.  Renewal costs are not to exceed $75 if you reapply prior to your permit expiring.   Once you have gotten your permit to carry in the mail it is valid for 5 years.  If you are a MN resident you cannot obtain a WI permit, however, your MN permit is valid in WI.  If you carry in another state that your MN permit is valid in, you must follow the rules of that state.  If you are a WI resident and want to get a WI permit, your application is mailed to WI DOJ, along with $40 fee and copy of training certificate.

Renewing your permit is easy…you just have to repeat the process that you did when you first got your permit.  Before the 5 years are up you will need to retake a carry class, luckily for you we have your contact info and will help you out with a friendly reminder!!  Go to the Sheriff’s office and reapply…and in 5 years do it all over again!  Wisconsin makes renewals very easy by mailing you your renewal paperwork to you 90 days prior to your Permit expiration.

Now you may have heard a co-worker tell you one thing about a carry law for Minnesota, and your neighbor might have told you something completely different about the same law…what is the correct answer?  Feel free to shoot us a line with any questions.  See what I did there…shoot us a…never mind! Our instructors are not only hilarious, but also very knowledgeable in MN and WI carry laws.

Here are a few misconceptions you may come across after you get your permit.

Minnesota does NOT have a “Stand Your Ground” Law.  In MN you have a duty to retreat if you can do so safely.  Minnesota also does NOT have a “Castle Doctrine”.  In fact there are 4 laws that MUST be followed in order to legally use “Deadly Force” in Minnesota.

  1.  You must be in immediate fear of death or great bodily harm.
  2.  You must have reluctantly entered the conflict.
  3.  No reasonable means of retreat.
  4.  No lesser use of force would suffice to stop the threat.

These laws must be followed during the entire time that the violent or deadly encounter lasts. The down side is you get a just few seconds to think all of this through before you act.  Keep in mind that Wisconsin has a “Castle Doctrine” and a “Stand Your Ground Law” (while in your home, car, or business).

Just because you have a permit to carry doesn’t mean you are able to carry wherever you want. You will learn in class that there are places that restrict and even prohibit you from carrying your firearm.

Quote of the day: Always carry a round in the chamber, because if you don’t, you could spend the rest of your life racking the slide.  –Unknown

Stay Safe & Carry On!!

States that MN permit is valid. (MN Residents)

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States that MN and WI permit is valid (WI Residents)

mn_wi map

Open Carry VS Conceal Carry

When you first start to carry a pistol you have an important decision to make whether you will open carry or conceal carry. The MCPPA (Minnesota Citizen Personal Protection Act) allows you to carry open or concealed. You have to think about the pros and cons of both open carrying and conceal carrying when making your decision.

open carry Pros of open carrying: Allows you to access your firearm quickly, could be a deterrent to criminals from starting something when seeing the open firearm and  in the right situation it can turn into a teachable moment for others on the right to open carry.

Cons of open carrying: Can lead to a “MAN WITH GUN” call rather than a deterrent to criminals, can lead to unwanted encounters with gun haters and it allows your gun to be grabbed at any moment which means that a level 1 holster at minimum should be used.


canceal carryPros of conceal carrying: Allows you to fly under the radar from criminals, gun haters, Allows you the use of a level 0 holster with no retention or a button to push.

Cons of conceal carrying: Slower access to firearm in an emergency

Now that you know some of the pros and cons the decision is yours on which best suites you.

As an Instructor I carry both open and concealed. When I first got my permit to carry I started carrying open. I did this with a couple things in mind. First, I wanted to get over the various looks and things that come with carrying a firearm in plain sight. I open carry every time I teach a class because I use my firearm and my holster as a teaching tool. When I open carry I use this as a teaching moment with my children as well. I teach them not to be scared of it and not to make a big deal about it. When I conceal carry it is mostly when I am going out to with my family or to a family function just to fly under the radar so to speak. That teaching moment with my kids that I talked about really helped when I conceal carry because it is no longer a big deal to them, I found out that when I concealed my firearm if my shirt would come up now exposing my firearm I would then here Dad your “GUN” is showing and I would get looks from people around me, now that they are used to the fact that I am carrying they don’t say anything. My carry gun of choice is a Springfield XD Mod.2 I use a Blackhawk Serpa level 2 OWB holster and I also use an Alien Gear IWB holster.

While I was openly carrying one day in my local grocery store I did have an encounter with someone in the grocery store that evening. I was at the check out bagging my groceries as a man in his 50s is checking out on the register next to mine. I watched this man walk to the door, we locked eyes and he was just about out the door at this moment. My wife had said something to me and I turned and said “what was that”. I then felt someone grab my holster and then yelled in my ear ” THANKS BUDDY” I immediately grabbed my gun and turned now squared up to him and yelled don’t ever touch my F$@^ing gun. He backed off and got to the door and said “you need to keep that concealed”, at that moment I was shaking and was wondering what I was going to walk out to in the parking lot. When I got out to the parking lot not even 1 min. later the man was no where to be found. After some time to reflect on this particular situation I think he wanted to make a point in the fact that he doesn’t care that I carry but doesn’t want to see it. However it is not ok to grab for someone else’s gun period. He is lucky that he didn’t get shot or stabbed because there is only one reason someone will try to grab your gun and that is to use it and more than likely you will be the 1st target. I now have a few more reasons why I would rather conceal then open carry, however I don’t not let that stop me from open carrying I am just now a lot more aware in the fact of expect the unexpected.

The decision to open or conceal carry is a decision that should not be taken lightly.