Three Cool Holsters

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The holster market is burgeoning, and folks have found Kydex easier to manufacture than leather. It also has some advantages, such as its imperviousness to moisture. Let’s look at some new scabbards, two of modern “plastic” and one of old-school critter-hide.

A reader wrote recently to ask if we had any advice on getting comfortable with inside the waistband (IWB) carry. The answer is, we need bigger waistbands. We bought the pants to fit us, and now it has to fit us, a pistol, and the thickness of the holster material around said pistol. As a rule of thumb, that generally means about 2 inches more waistband. That is, if you normally wear a size 36 at the waist, and you want to go with IWB carry, the best fit is likely to be a size 38 waistband.

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This G43 9mm rides comfortably and securely in the Yeti-Tac Yeti07.

Yeti-Tac IWB

While testing the then-new GLOCK 43 for another magazine, one of the holsters I used was Yeti-Tac Yeti07, the first IWB designed by Yeti-Tac’s Bill Peters. One feature I liked is it comes without a sweat guard, allowing for a full drawing grasp. There were no sharp edges to bark the fingers in a fast grab for the 9mm, and it was perfectly comfortable when it disappeared beneath an un-tucked polo shirt, which concealed the loaded 43 perfectly. It comes with adjustable tension screws, but the tension was already perfectly adjusted when it came out of the package—secure, but allowing for a very clean and swift draw. Soft belt loops with 1-way dot snaps kept the holster solidly in place. There’s some adjustment range on the belt loops too, which allowed the forward tilt you see in the photos, which in turn allowed a perfectly personalized “3:30 behind the right hip” placement.

The ultra-slim G43, particularly in this compact holster with its thin, rigid Kydex skin, might even be comfortable with only an extra inch of waistband size.

Delivery speed was so fast as to be positively extraordinary. I was very happy with this holster in every way, and it’s become my favorite for that little slim-line G43. It’s a steal at a retail price of $50.

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The HK P30SK (tested in this issue) proved excellent for CCW
in the Green Force Tactical Custom IWB
.

Green Force Holsters IWB

When I tested the new Heckler and Koch P30SK 9mm (see feature in this issue), I decided to use it as my teaching gun in a MAG-40 course at Thunderbird Tactical in Wichita, Kansas in the summer of 2015. Knowing it would be hot, I wanted something that would easily hide the pistol under an un-tucked polo, and reached out to my friends at Green Force Tactical LLC in North Florida, who quickly got me one of their Custom IWBs.

The Green Force Tactical guys actively seek out input from seasoned pistol packers and competitive pistol shooters, and they listen. They make a point of building the holsters the way the individual customer wants them. One of their consultants is John Strayer, owner of the ProArms Gun Shop in Live Oak, Fla., and one of IDPA’s few Five-Gun Masters, who has lost count of how many state and regional championships he has won.

Chris Green and Chad Mason at Green Force quickly provided one of their Custom IWB holsters. Once again, I was happy to see it come without a sweat guard, facilitating positive grasp at first draw, and therefore swift presentation. Comfort factor was high. A forward tilt carry just behind the hip allowed perfect concealment under just the shirt. Re-holstering was clean and positive.

These folks do good work, and they’re eager to work with new designs. If you’ve had something in mind but aren’t on the handy side yourself, give ’em a call. The Custom IWB is not overpriced for its quality at $69.99.

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The Flashbang “Sophia” holster is a firm, comfortable leather holster
offering silent presentation and reholstering with the Glock 43

Flashbang Sophia

One advantage of leather over Kydex holsters is they allow a silent, surreptitious draw without a telltale scraping sound as the gun emerges. If you’ve had to do a “stealth draw,” determined there’s no longer a danger and wish to discreetly re-holster, you can do so in leather without that giveaway “snick” sound.

An example is the Sophia, from Lisa Looper’s Flashbang Holsters. Though the name is associated with Lisa’s most famous product, the Flashbang Bra Holster, the company offers much more than that. The Sophia, from her women’s holster line, is a semi-Yaqui slide originally made for the Springfield XD-S, which turned out to be a great fit for the G43. It has turned out to be my girlfriend’s choice for daily carry with the 43. She finds it comfortable and exquisitely concealable. We’ve both shot qualifications with the G43 out of the Sophia and found it fast and sure. (Yes, I’ve worn my girlfriend’s holster. Just call me Caitlyn, and get over it. At least it wasn’t the bra holster.)

The leather Lisa uses is soft enough the edges of the holster never dig at the body, but firm enough the holster mouth stays open without needing metal reinforcement. This allows, smooth, positive 1-handed holstering by feel, which can be important when you’ve had to draw in public, you know police are responding, and you realize you are “person with a gun, there now.” At $49.95 plus postage, this is a good holster and a good value.
By Massob Ayoob

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