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Kydex vs. leather

Discussion in 'Carry Issues' started by speicher, Oct 10, 2012.

  1. speicher


    Jun 21, 2006
    With all the high end holsters being made these days (Kydex & leather) which do you think will hold up the best over time?

    The one thing I like about Kydex, is the ability to wash it out with soap and water when it gets dirt and debris inside of it, doing such a cleaning with leather is probably not a smart thing to over time and use, leather cannot stay as clean as Kydex.

    I'm trying to determine if I should pick up a nice leather holster, or just stick with Kydex. I have been using Kydex from Raven Concealment and really like them...but for some reason have been thinking about mixing it up with some leather.
  2. beatcop


    Aug 13, 2003
    New England
    Let's face it, plastic prob lasts a 100 years...leather will be green and moldy in a fraction of the time. Use & environment.

    Leather has its uses...quiet to draw, soft on the gun, clothes, & skin.

  3. CA Escapee

    CA Escapee Finally!

    Feb 15, 2012
    What about a happy medium? Horsehide.

    I have two Kramer Horsehide Belt Scabbards for my G19/23 and G30. They have a very hard Kydex like quality to them and they don't absorb water like cowhide. I suppose you could rinse the dust bunnies out of them with water, too.

    The Kramer website states, " As a matter of fact, one group of operatives gave this rig, (the Vertical Scabbard,) the "ultimate field test" by immersing the gun and holster in salt water for 11 hours. The holster still retained the weapon."

    I prefer to keep mine dry. :whistling:

  4. Angry Fist

    Angry Fist Dehumanizer® Lifetime Member

    Dec 30, 2009
    Hellbilly Hill
    It's why I like the hybrids.
  5. dosei


    Mar 22, 2005
    Upstate SC
    FIST hybrids...Leather exterior bonded to a kydex interior. ANY of their holsters can be made as a hybrid.

    As for which is best over the long haul...IMHO, flip a coin. Plastic cracks and when that happens it's trash. Leather requires a bit more care but a well made well cared for leather holster can last a heck of a long time.
  6. MLittle


    Jun 24, 2010
    I started out with horsehide from Galco and High Noon, but after a couple of years went all kydex. Living in North Texas, the summers can be brutal. I carry aiwb, next to the skin under t-shirts or sportshirts. At the end of each day I wipe of the sweat that has accumulated during the day. I just don't think leather would hold up...... There are also other benefits to kydex. It can be made very thin and I believe they are actually less damaging to pistols than leather. I have 4 Dale Fricke holsters and the pistol is held firm just in front of the trigger guard and the very front of the slide. I do have two very small wear marks on my Sig P220 Carry in those two places, but that's it. It's kydex for me....
  7. Gun Shark

    Gun Shark

    Aug 25, 2005
    I've carried in kydex and leather. And for me the leather is more comfortable, and conceals significantly better.

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  8. F14Scott

    F14Scott Luggage CLM

    Sep 13, 2001
    Katy, TX
    I'm a new CHL carrier in TX. I absolutely love my Comp Tac Minotaur MTAC hybrid. The leather is breaking in and molding around my hip, so it is very comfortable, while the kydex holster portion holds a firm grip on my G23 while still releasing it smoothly when enough draw pressure is applied. Best of both worlds.

  9. Angry Fist

    Angry Fist Dehumanizer® Lifetime Member

    Dec 30, 2009
    Hellbilly Hill
    I don't leave home without mine. :thumbsup:

  10. janice6

    janice6 Silver Member

    Apr 4, 2006
    All my working holsters are hybrid. However, leather makes the classiest and most elegant holsters.

    If quality leather holsters ever get to be a fashion statement for being well dressed, I will buy a nice leather one. (Right now, no one wants to see them)

    I also have a watch for work and a different watch for dress.
  11. KennyFSU


    Mar 14, 2011
    Kydex + Horsehide = best of both worlds:


    Have been wearing this setup for over 3 years without any issues.
  12. bonjorno2


    Jan 26, 2011
    Space Coast
    garrett industries silent thunder
  13. CanMan

    CanMan Silver Member

    Jun 15, 2012
    in flagrante
    Kramer IWB Horsehide EDC for me. I like the looks and feel of Horsehide better than Kydex. Now then, being the practical fool that I am, Kydex would be my choice if faced with having to carry OC in a really dusty & gritty environment. Guess they both have pros and cons.
  14. rednoved

    rednoved NRA Member

    Jul 8, 2012
    Hybrid IWB for me.
  15. deputy1199


    Feb 2, 2012
    I have a leather IWB holster custom made for my (then EDC) S&W 39-2 by Seventrees in New York City in 1972 that is still in like-new condition. It has never stretched, absorbed any moisture, accumulated any interior dust or dirt, or adversely affected the pistol finish.
    In 40 years the only care the leather has ever needed was a periodic coat of saddle soap and polishing with a soft cloth. I don't have my Milt Sparks and Ken Null horsehide leather holsters for such a long period of use but I'm sure that with similar care my grandsons will have use of them.
    Last edited: Oct 13, 2012