Author Topic: 5000 days of carrying an R9S  (Read 550 times)

Offline Datan

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5000 days of carrying an R9S
« on: June 13, 2018, 01:18:51 AM »
I recently exceeded 5000 days of carrying my R9S.  That is over 14 years of riding in an RJ Hedley pocket holster in my front right pocket with one in the pipe.  I thought I’d share what it looks like now and some thoughts.



Before the R9S, it was a long search for the perfect carry gun.  I remember the excitement of trying new guns and ways to carry, hoping each new combination would be the perfect fit for me.  But there was always disappointment in the end for me and I would find that I just didn’t carry that often because of one issue or another.  That all ended when I got my hands on the R9S.



I remember my excitement when seeing this gun in the 2003 Shot Show - day 3 was it?  About a week and many pages of reading later, I sent an email to Rohrbaugh Firearms to ‘get on the list’ to buy one.  That was February 23rd, 2003.  In September of 2003, I made payment and Eric told me that my gun was in production in October 2003.  It was one of the very first to receive the gray anodized frame.  I opted for the personalized serial number.  I wanted it to be unique when someday I passed it along to one of my children.  At the time I didn’t consider the collectability.  I asked for “BPD-001”; my initials-001.  Maybe if I was a smarter man, I’d have done something catchy like “Bond-007”.  On May 13th, 2004, it arrived at my FFL and it has been a love affair and carried since for all but a few days per year. 



I was in-love with it from the moment I got my hands on it and, typical of young relationships, I fawned over it quite a bit that first year.  Over time, I came to depend on it and take it for granted (which is a good thing).  Today it isn’t as shiny as it was 14 years ago, but I don’t love it less for that.  I certainly have a deep respect for it.  We had our bumpy times in the beginning.  F2F / F2E was not uncommon.  I wasn’t initially sure that I could count on/trust it.  As is often the case in a relationship, it was just as much me as it was the gun.  I had to learn how to hold and fire the gun.  That went a long way to fixing things.  But the gun was a very early model and had some growing pains as well.  It went back to Rohrbaugh and had the rear of the barrel rounded and the guide rod assembly upgraded.  The magazines were swapped out as well.  After that, the gun ran perfectly and has ever since.     




Offline Datan

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Re: 5000 days of carrying an R9S
« Reply #1 on: June 13, 2018, 01:22:47 AM »
Today the R9S literally feels like a part of me.  My brain has cancelled the weight of it entirely out of my consciousness - I don’t feel it at all.  The only time I notice it is on the very rare occasion when it is not there and then it is a nagging sense that something is missing.



Often carried and seldom fired has been the way with this fine gun for me.  I fired the majority of rounds through this gun during the first year when getting familiar with it and getting it to run reliably.  That was ~600 rounds of Gold Dot HP 115gr and a couple recoil springs back then and it has had no more than 250 since then.  Doing the math, that is a couple of mags per year after the initial set.  This serves to keep me convinced that it works and will fire when I pull the trigger.  It also serves to cycle out the ammo that has lived in the mag for a year.  It has been dry fired quite a bit more than that.  Early on, I got a 9mm chamber insert that shoots a momentary laser dot every time the trigger is pulled.  This was great for training and for the relief of my hand.  I have never loved firing this gun a whole lot but can do so accurately enough and without hesitation that I have no doubt that it will protect me and mine. 



As far as care and maintenance is concerned, I have done very little with this gun over the years, aside from carrying it and occasionally firing it.  It gets cleaned about once a year, and that is after I fire it.  I do blow the lint off/out of it every so often if I notice it is particularly bad.  So it sits in my pocket for a year, gets fired, gets cleaned, and the cycle repeats.  Some folks may balk at this, cleaning their personal carry guns once a week or month, whether they fire them or not.  Not me.  If I carried the relationship metaphor forward, I’d be divorced and alone a long time ago due to neglect.  Even so, it has never failed me when I pull the trigger. 

The bottom line is that this gun is reliable and is always with me.  The two things that a gun must be.  I have no desire to try anything else for defensive carry.  What a nice feeling.  I have to thank the Rohrbaugh brothers and company for such a fine handgun. 
 
I never did post much on here, although I joined in May 2004.  I haven’t been back in years but it is great to see the community is going strong.  It is cool to see that some of the active folks from back-in-the-day are still here too… DDGator, Richard S, MountainMan… I am sure that there are others.

Kind Regards, Brian
« Last Edit: June 13, 2018, 02:36:18 AM by Datan »

Offline mannylinda

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Re: 5000 days of carrying an R9S
« Reply #2 on: June 13, 2018, 06:36:49 AM »
Thank You

Offline mz368

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Re: 5000 days of carrying an R9S
« Reply #3 on: June 13, 2018, 06:39:59 AM »
Brian-

Congratulations on reaching such a milestone!  Very nice very early production.  Hope you have 5000 more days together.

-Chris

Offline MN Lefty

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Re: 5000 days of carrying an R9S
« Reply #4 on: June 13, 2018, 07:50:46 AM »
Great to hear.  I used to carry mine all the time for a few years.  J frame before Rohrbaugh then Kimber solo now NAA mini all pocket.  I’ve got to get back to Rohrbaugh after reading your account.  That was why I bought my Rohrbaugh in the first place.  Thanks for opening my eyes again.

Offline MikeInTexas

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Re: 5000 days of carrying an R9S
« Reply #5 on: June 13, 2018, 09:21:46 AM »
Don't fret the serial number, probably not a better choice to be made.  I am sure whatever family member ends up with it will appreciate it a lot more than bond007 or something not near as personal.  I am glad to see you bought the pistol to use, not collect dust and sell later.  That is why I have mine.

Thanks for the good read.

Offline ECR

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Re: 5000 days of carrying an R9S
« Reply #6 on: June 15, 2018, 09:23:31 AM »
This is so good to see Brian and it makes me feel good to know you still have her.

I remember building that R9 for you and making sure I found a nice even patterned set of the blue carbon fiber grips for you. She looks marvelous! Ha haa . . . . . .

I trust all is well and I also trust this R9 will find it's way into the hands of one of your family members. If you have any need for communication, please contact me here.

Best Regards,

Eric C. Rohrbaugh
Makers of the NRA Shooting Illustrated: "Handgun of the Year for 2005" and receiver of an NRA Golden Bullseye Award.

Offline Datan

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Re: 5000 days of carrying an R9S
« Reply #7 on: June 19, 2018, 03:08:25 PM »
Thx all.  And thx Eric; I do appreciate the care you took in making this.  Great to see you here and know where to come if I need/want to contact you!

I need to pick up a second R9 at some point, when I can afford it.  I have two children; a 17 yr old boy and a 14 yr old girl.  They are both into shooting and it isn't going to go over well giving the one R9S to one and not giving anything to the other :).

I did buy two RJ Hedley holsters at the time.  I saw some posts that lead me to believe they are being made now?  I know we lost RJ quite a while back...

Offline tracker

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Re: 5000 days of carrying an R9S
« Reply #8 on: June 19, 2018, 03:14:29 PM »
RJ's daughter, Lisa Hedley, is making and repairing holsters now. She has done some rehab work for me and her workmanship is outstanding, in addition to a very pleasant experience.
http://hedleyholsters.com

Offline ECR

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Re: 5000 days of carrying an R9S
« Reply #9 on: June 20, 2018, 06:39:19 PM »
I'm sure when the time comes, you'll find a wonderful specimen right here for sale Brian.

Makers of the NRA Shooting Illustrated: "Handgun of the Year for 2005" and receiver of an NRA Golden Bullseye Award.

Offline Datan

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Re: 5000 days of carrying an R9S
« Reply #10 on: June 21, 2018, 01:07:22 PM »
Thank you, tracker!  It is very heart-warming to hear that RJ's daughter continued the work.

Eric, I agree and this will be the first place I look :)

Offline johnny

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Re: 5000 days of carrying an R9S
« Reply #11 on: June 21, 2018, 05:35:49 PM »
   What a great and interesting read here.
        Problem is I need another holster like I need a hole in my head.But of the hand guns I have for carrying,it has always been my R9 when I need to be really discreet,not illegal,just discreet.I can imagine how much more my "comfort level" would be with an inside the pocket holster.The 3 I already have are already very concealed,but this seems like a notch up.

Offline PhilZ

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Re: 5000 days of carrying an R9S
« Reply #12 on: June 21, 2018, 10:57:08 PM »
   What a great and interesting read here.
        Problem is I need another holster like I need a hole in my head.But of the hand guns I have for carrying,it has always been my R9 when I need to be really discreet,not illegal,just discreet.I can imagine how much more my "comfort level" would be with an inside the pocket holster.The 3 I already have are already very concealed,but this seems like a notch up.

In Michigan, the first concealed carry violation is just a civil infraction like a parking ticket, then misdemeanor, then more.  I haven't pushed my luck, but carrying with a holster that prints like a wallet has been attempted by some in places that are otherwise off-limits like school pickup lines, Detroit bars, etc.  If you get caught, you get one "oops", then you have to behave. 

Offline johnny

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Re: 5000 days of carrying an R9S
« Reply #13 on: June 22, 2018, 08:32:30 AM »
  To me it seems the way Michigan has their law written is fair.They let you screw up so you wake up.Then shame on you.
     I have never looked to see what's on the books here in Wisconsin.I have never carried where I am not legal.If we are going to Green Bay and my wife says we need to run thru the drop off mail box at the post office,I don't even bring a weapon along.I go to the VA. hospital every few months down in Madison.I leave my gun at home.Like the post office,it's federal property and not even allowed in the parking lot.
       When the concealed carry law passed in Wisconsin some years ago now,I payed very close attention when walking into the different stores,gas stations,and such.And except for most of the large chains,which never put weapon bans up from the get go,I'v seeing most local stores up here in the northern part of Wisconsin take their signs down.Milwaukee and Madison pretty much the same.
             One thing I am going to do now is just out of curiosity find what the penalties are and how they are incremented.

Offline cargaritaville

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Re: 5000 days of carrying an R9S
« Reply #14 on: June 22, 2018, 09:35:10 AM »
Thank god for Florida...
Having a gun in your hand is much more effective than having the entire police department on the phone!