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Thread: Advice for S&W M&P OC/CC Holster?

  1. #1
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    I own a Smith & Wesson Military & Police 9mm 4.5" and I am looking for a leather holster that can be used for both concealed and open carry. I have a Blackhawk Serpa that works great at the range - I really like it for OC. However, it doesn't seem to pull the gun in high or close enough for me to CC comfortably.

    I'd now like to try a leather holster (hip, stong side), and have been looking for a while but there doesn't seem to be a lot of choices for this specific gun. I do like the thumb break - as a new handgun owner this additional level of retention is a benefit. Can anyone recommend a holster?

    I found the Bianchi Piranha - can anyone offer a quick review?

    Appreciate your thoughts and suggestions!

  2. #2
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    I carry with a leather galco belt holster, very comfortable holster.I carry a 40 cal cz in it and find it comfortable even when sitting in my truck and driving for 3or 4 hours with it on.

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    Have you checked out High Noon Holsters? I like their stuff.

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    Regular_Joe wrote:
    I own a Smith & Wesson Military & Police 9mm 4.5" and I am looking for a leather holster that can be used for both concealed and open carry. I have a Blackhawk Serpa that works great at the range - I really like it for OC. However, it doesn't seem to pull the gun in high or close enough for me to CC comfortably.

    I'd now like to try a leather holster (hip, stong side), and have been looking for a while but there doesn't seem to be a lot of choices for this specific gun. I do like the thumb break - as a new handgun owner this additional level of retention is a benefit. Can anyone recommend a holster?

    I found the Bianchi Piranha - can anyone offer a quick review?

    Appreciate your thoughts and suggestions!
    Joe,

    The Piranha seems to be a good holster with several caveats to "Good". Bianchi lists all the holsters I looked at with 1.75" belt slots. A 1.75" double thickness leather gun belt makes forgreat vertical stiffness to help create a stabile carry platform, but most pants don’t have 1.75” belt loops. I would select a double thick leather belt in 1.5’ width, and then select a holster with 1.5” belt slots. Most dress pants have 1.25” belt loops. I make sure my khaki slacks have 1.5” belt loops. Point being the belt is the most important part of the belt/holster components to support your pistol. If your slots on the holster are larger that the belt width you’ll have .25” slop in the slots. The slots will also stretch out and the result will be that the pistol/holster will move and float around on the belt and your body. This will also result in the draw being affected, when you draw the pistol, gun/holster will move upwards and forward as you draw. Instead of the release of the holster being crisp, you get a mushy unpredictable draw. To make a long explanation short…er, make sure your belt and holster slots are the same. But If you select 1.75” belt, you won’t be able to use that belt with many pants on the market.

    I have carried this holster a lot, the Galco Askins Avenger. It does not have a thumb break but no break is my preference and it is strong side only. It does have the 1.75” belt slots, that seem to be a standard now. IIRC Galco used to make 1.5” loops. http://www.usgalco.com/HolsterPG3.asp?ProductID=3879&GunID=329

    This Galco has 1.5” belt loops http://www.usgalco.com/HolsterPG3.asp?ProductID=3458&GunID=329 and again no thumb break and strong side only.

    The FLECH is well know and carried http://www.usgalco.com/HolsterPG3.asp?ProductID=3247&GunID=329 but again it has 1.75” belt slots.

    My personal advice would be to contact a custom maker and have a belt and holster built. I can vouch for Sparks and Mitch Rosen, I’ve carried both extensively, but prefer Rosen’s product….no slam on Sparks, they make a top quality holster. If you go with Rosen he has his Express Line that can be had in about 3 weeks at prices very completive with Bianchi or Galco but a much better product and quality. Mitch’s belts are the best I have used…period. http://www.mitchrosen.com/product_line/product_line.html Mitch is a working LEO that has a holster business and provides a fine product.

    I personally would not select a holster that is strong side/cross draw both, there is a large flap of leather hanging out there that will stretch and twist adding to vertical instability of the carry platform. If you want to carry cross draw, buy a specific holster to suit that mode of carry.



    I hope this helps….of course I’m not a expert..but did stay at a Holiday Inn once.



    Steve




    Steve


    "Life is hard, its even harder when you are stupid!"

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    gunsmoke32 wrote:
    Have you checked out High Noon Holsters? I like their stuff.
    I'll take a look - I hadn't heard of them.

    Thanks!

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    Steve,

    I really appreciate your detailed response. I hadn't really thought of the belt loop size or the corresponding 'slop' factor! Is the 1.75" size more of a duty belt? I'd really like to find something that I can wear with my current jeans/khakis/dress pants. I need to take another look at the Galcos - homework for this weekend.

    I hadn't thought seriously about a custom job - sound much more expen$ive then an 'off-the-rack' option. Although I really like the 'between the waistband and belt' option: seems like an effective compromise between IWB and OWB.

    --Joe


    (Edited: was 'IWB and IWB!)

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    Regular_Joe wrote:
    Steve,

    I really appreciate your detailed response. I hadn't really thought of the belt loop size or the corresponding 'slop' factor! Is the 1.75" size more of a duty belt? I'd really like to find something that I can wear with my current jeans/khakis/dress pants. I need to take another look at the Galcos - homework for this weekend.

    I hadn't thought seriously about a custom job - sound much more expen$ive then an 'off-the-rack' option. Although I really like the 'between the waistband and belt' option: seems like an effective compromise between IWB and IWB.

    --Joe
    Joe,

    My pleasure, take a look a Mitch Rosen's Express Line, you'll find that the holsters are within 10 or 15 bucks of Galco or Bianchi.

    The 1.75 belts are not so much of a duty belt, but the holster makers use it as one size fits all, but in everyday parctical usage, one size fits all does nothing well, and as I said 1.75" won't fit a lot of pants especailly dress pants.

    One thing I forgot to mention is the holster stiffness, all the Galco's and Bianchi'sstart to collapse when the holster is withdrawn while wearing the holster/pistol with constant everyday wear. One under rated attribute you get in the higher end holsters is the leather quality and stiffness. You have to wear your belt much tighter than normal when carrying a large frame firearm all day. This contributes to the collapse as the leathers used in some of the mass produced holsters.



    One question, Do you plan on carrying everyday, all day? If so you really need quality gear.



    Good luck and let us know what you decide.



    Steve


    Steve


    "Life is hard, its even harder when you are stupid!"

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    J22-M92 alfonso leather northholly wierd comifornia,i carry a sigma 40 ve,but got it from a former co-worker who carried his duty weapon(the M&p) in it check it out i love it and you can get the matching double mag pouch.I have both...

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    brokenbarrel wrote:
    J22-M92 alfonso leather northholly wierd comifornia,i carry a sigma 40 ve,but got it from a former co-worker who carried his duty weapon(the M&p) in it check it out i love it and you can get the matching double mag pouch.I have both...
    I'll look them up - thanks!

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