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Carpenter William Williford from New Hampshire shares his “Simple Enough, Yet Effective” EDC from Everyday Carry.

Mr. Williford stands as the first person I know who actually trusts his life to a Polymer 80 “ghost gun”.  As much as I may or may not like my hypothetical ghost guns, I will always carry a real GLOCK over a Polymer 80.

The Polymer 80s, of course, are the “80% completed” GLOCK-style lower handgun frames that you finish machining, then complete into a functioning gun by installing the parts and a slide.

Why do I choose a factory gun over a home-brew serial number-free gun?  A dear friend, now tragically deceased, had a “ghostly” AR-15.  He always kept saying he had finally ironed out the problems, yet every time he fired it in my presence for the better part of a year, it malfunctioned within a few rounds.  I think he got it fixed before he died, but the memories of his problems still rattle around in the back of my mind.   While my hypothetical ghosts have been problem free, I still don’t completely trust those spooky things.

At the same time, Mr. W. really should invest in some hollow-point rounds for his everyday carry  because ball ammo tends to over-penetrate and under-perform on bad guys.

Anyway, he writes rather extensively about his load-out at Everyday Carry:

My edc is as simple and effective as i need it to be. I normally carry my pf940sc because there is virtually no imprint when i carry iwb with this particular holster. My flashlight for choice of carry is the Bushnell PHP 400L flashlight. Its not a small light by any means but i only carry it when necessary, and i like the idea of the aggressive bezel. The reason for two knives is obvious, and something i believe is absolutely necessary… I carry a Kershaw Speedsafe that is spring assisted as my primary, and a smaller traditional Kershaw folder with a rubber molded grip and a thumb break.. I carry this as a secondary or backup because it is a tried and true design and yet again it’s simple! I keep my keys on a Triwonder 1″ HK clip that i added a Velcro strap to it so i can mount it to my belt, but still be able to pull it off without too much resistance.. As for my wallet it was nice… And I think it’s about time for a new one!.. Anyway Thanks for checking out my pocket dump!!

So he only carries his Bushnell flashlight when he needs it?  Does he only use his seat belt when he thinks he needs it, too?

C’mon Bill:  Carry your flashlight, buy a couple of boxes of hollow-points and up your game, sir!  Congrats on the Polymer 80 though!


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  1. What are the minimum marking requirements on completing an 80 pct. lower?

      • Cool. I’m not selling, but I will be gifting family members in non-free states…

        • In that context, once you finish the lower it’s a firearm, so (as I understand it, ianal) it must be “serialized” prior to transfer of ownership.

          Polymer80 lowers have a metal plate embedded in the rail for the purpose.

      • Except if you are in the communist state of California. Then your 80 percent lower must be serialized and registered upon completion. And if I’m not mistaken, they are pushing to require an FFL to sell 80 percent lowers.

  2. I never understood the polymer 80 thing. Unless you want an untraceable gun. By the time you get all the additional parts you need to complete it you’re looking at maybe $100 Less than the real Austrian deal…. ….for a clone that you carved parts out of yourself with a drill.

    • Some people are into the carving part, it’s something they enjoy, like doing their own home renovations or car mods. It’s just the next step beyond building your own AR using a factory completed lower. I could also see it as a great father and child activity.

      Having said all that, I have never done a build from an 80% lower, but I get why some people do.

      • I’ve enjoyed building 80% ARs even though I still view mouseguns as a toy. With a good mill it’s nearly impossible to tell the difference between the 80% lower and one I’ve filled out a 4473 to buy. In the US, one really doesn’t have to show the need to do something. (At least, not yet.)

    • Better grip texture, better ergonomics, not as much guilt doing a grip chop to turn a g19 into a g26 long slide.

    • i could see finishing one in 10mm and slapping a carbine upper on top. especially since zero aspects of that would require anything beyond the postman.

    • Yeah, I have to agree with South Al. Curiosity maybe? No different than model rocketry or woodworking or whatever.

      But I would never trust something I crafted as an EDC. I know me too well.

  3. John, got to agree with you. Factory manufactured is the way to go. Condolences for your friend. However, I have to say I’ll never have full confidence in any AR no matter who built it. Otherwise, pocket dump looks good. Again, loose mag extension.

  4. While I get the attraction of making your own to the fullest extent you can, that’s a hobby and a political statement.

    Factory made only when my life may depend upon it some day.

  5. The fact that the guy is a carpenter may have something to do with his willingness to carry what he’s built. Fabrication skills tend to translate to some degree from one form of fab to another.

    Also, he’s not joking about the light, that whole thing is aggressive. I dunno how well Bushnell does lights, but that thing looks like it’s seen at least a day or two of being carried.

    • Thanks for the comments, and yes I do build for my own personal use, this is one of 18 builds I have completed and I don’t care what anyone says it does it’s job just like the rest of my “personally built firearms”…..

      • Yup, in my experience those who don’t trust ‘home built’ stuff either A) have never built anything or B) have limited experience and thus, an underdeveloped skillset. I’ve built everything from cars to handmade tube amps. If I decided to build a carry gun I would have utter confidence in it (after proper testing, of course).

        • “…in my experience those who don’t trust ‘home built’ stuff…”

          This seems to come in one extreme or the other. They either don’t trust themselves to do much of anything or they have absolute faith in themselves to do something that there’s a 99.9999% chance they can’t do or will do in a way that is horrendously dangerous.

  6. I bet Bill goes home every night disgusted because he wasn’t able to use his War Chest on anyone. Well maybe tomorrow will be a better day/night.:)

    • If you think that stuff in his pockets is a “war chest” you clearly don’t have a clue.

      Do you really believe that people who carry want to shoot someone? That’s some projection of your own neurosis (and idiotic).

  7. That looks like HP bullets, not FMJ, unless my tiny screen sucks. The front end looks squared off.

    I’d love to build a ghost gun one day, I just don’t trust my technical skills 🙂

  8. Nice dump. I’m not into the build-your-own thing but it seems to work for him.

    The DWO is a most excellent knife. Kershaw needs to re-release them.

  9. “So he only carries his Bushnell flashlight when he needs it? Does he only use his seat belt when he thinks he needs it, too?”

    I went out for lunch at 1:00 in the afternoon today. Yes, I admit it, the sky was slightly overcast, but I really don’t think I needed to carry a flashlight to get lunch in the middle of the day.

    • What if you had had to chase a terrorist team into a basement on your way to lunch. 😉

      Do you even operate, bro?

      • No I am a civilian…. Hence the reason some things get carried sometimes and sometimes don’t….. I’m happy with what I carry it works for me….

        • Yup. I’m a civilian too… so all I need to carry is a phone to dial 911. That’s what the police are for. I mean to show up with their outline drawing chalk to pretend they’re solving crimes instead of busting dangerous skateboarders, weed smokers and unlicensed kids selling lemonade.

  10. My only hangup on MY hypothetical 80% guns (I reject the term “Ghost Gun” based on liberal stigma), is that God forbid I shoot somebody with one and have to explain it in court. No prosecutor in the world would pass up the opportunity to fry my ass in front of the best jury he/she could put together as a lunatic or God knows what else. I’d be perfectly happy to never shoot anybody, but if it came to it, I’d much rather use a documented, legally unambiguous everyday vanilla gun. I rather it were my weapon and not one custom made for the DA to use against me.

  11. I like that people can do that but I wouldn’t carry one unless I had no other option.

    Imagine if you had to shoot someone. We know it SHOULDN’T matter, but it would anyway if the stars aligned wrong.

  12. His reasoning on the backup knife seems odd to me, yet he thinks it’s obvious to have a second. Dude, if you’re somehow disarmed, go for your knife, and find the primary not working, what kind of time do you think you have to reach for a 3rd weapon???

    I’m all about getting rid of unnecessary shit when I carry. That includes flashlights during the day and more than 1 knife.

    At least he mentions a holster even though it isn’t in the shot. Come on people, include your holsters!! This is what is enabling you to carry in the first place!

  13. Ok so you’d have to be pretty ignorant to look at a picture that has Hollow Points in it and say they are ball tip…. That being said the rest of your article on my pocket dump was horrible… I thought this was a page where we could show what we carry and why, not post for some idiot to criticize… Constructive criticism is warranted, this was just plain ignorant…. Thanks for the comments and showing my pic, now that I know the intentions of the writer all I can do is laugh… Yes I do trust my firearm, it works, and it’s a little more ergonomically sound than a “real Glock”, I actually did my own tests, and let’s just say my gen 3 Glock 23 is now a safe queen…. To all that complimented thanks!! For the rest, keep measuring that pecker, maybe it’ll get a little bigger!…..

    • Sadly, this like many forms is filled with rabid self professed experts who fear being attacked by hordes of zombies or illegal aliens or misguided Yutes or giant spiders.

      My primary device to thwart would be robbers is seven or eight one dollar bills in a loose wad that I can take out and handover. I think it’s a much better deal for my soul and peace of mind to hand someone five or six bucks as opposed to killing them.

      I really don’t need any more trouble getting to sleep at night. And no matter what you think, righteous shoot or not, you’re sleeping with him the rest of your life.

  14. If I owned an 80 percent handgun, it would never be carried due to a possible lack of knowledge concerning the legality of these firearms. To me, it would be better to carry a clearly legal firearm than to depend on law enforcement, judges, etc to be knowledgeable and unbiased about an unserialized firearm.

    I guess for some people, an 80 percent firearm is kind of a backup for a “the government is coming to take my guns” situation, where they could be compliant with their registered guns, and hide their unserialized guns. This is why Commiefornia now requires all homemade firearms to be serialized and registered.


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