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Secure IWB Holster Recommendation

Discussion in 'GATE Self-Defense Forum' started by IDCG, Mar 2, 2012.

  1. IDCG


    Likes Received:
    Aug 25, 2001
    Colorado Springs, CO USA
    Hello Mas

    I carry a G23 in a Blocker holster with metal clip and safety strap. Nice holster, but was wondering if there is anything else out there that would provide better handgun retention?

    I remember a while back you recommended the "Peacekeeper" holster, but can't remember if it's IWB or not.

    Are there any holsters out there that are IWB and provide more retention than simply a safety strap?

    Thanks for all your mentoring!

  2. Mas Ayoob

    Mas Ayoob KoolAidAntidote Moderator

    Likes Received:
    Nov 6, 2005
    The concealable designs with added retention features such as the Bianchi with the middle-finger release, or the Safariland concealment variation of Bill Rogers' SS-III design, don't lend themselves to inside the waistband carry. There is the arguably remote possibility of the holster shifting inside the waistband and becoming inaccessible to the authorized user's hand, particularly if a very strenuous physical fight precededes the need to draw the gun.

    The Piece-Keeper holster (cute name!) by Strong Leather was originally designed (and can still be had) as a pancake style holster, riding tight to the body for good concealment and anchored strongly by belt loops fore and aft. I liked the prototype IWB version I tested, which had a very strong belt clip, but there was the possibility that if the user mounted it on too narrow, thin, or soft a belt, the draw could be fumbled. The reason is that it was a level-II holster, in which the first step of clearing it was rocking the thumb paddle back, and the second was pressing it inward as on a conventional thumb-break holster. On too weak a belt, the whole holster could rock back if the draw wasn't perfect, resulting in a failure to release. I suspect that's why the IWB version didn't last long, and the OWB can still be purchased after all these years.

    And of course, with a SERPA, the trigger finger release paddle would be blocked by the clothing if it was inside the waistband.

    This leaves us mainly with thumb-break holsters for snatch-resistant IWB designs.

    For more security, carry a pistol with a manual safety engaged (anyone who gains control of it has to "find the lever that turns it on," generally buying the disarmed legitimate user time to rectify the situation. An on-safe pistol in a thumb-break IWB is basically giving you "level II retention" against a weapon snatch attempt.

    And...I would be remiss if I didn't add that it is ALWAYS a good idea to carry backup and to get hands-on training in a proven handgun retention system. For the latter, I recommend the Lindell Method.