Can a belt be too thick?

Can a belt be too thick?

This is a discussion on Can a belt be too thick? within the Defensive Carry Holsters & Carry Options forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; Looking for another belt. Ive narrowed my choices to A&G, Beltman, or Bullhide belts. Question, can a belt be to thick and ridgid for some ...

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Thread: Can a belt be too thick?

  1. #1
    Senior Member Array wormy's Avatar
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    Can a belt be too thick?

    Looking for another belt. Ive narrowed my choices to A&G, Beltman, or Bullhide belts. Question, can a belt be to thick and ridgid for some holsters? I will be carrying mostly a Silver Dollar Pancake for about 2-4 hours a day. The Bullhide brand is a single 13oz layer of leather, where the A-G and Beltman are double thick. Would a single layer belt or maybe even a bridle leather belt be better to snake through the slots in a pancake holster. I will mostly be wearing the belt with no holster at work for 8 hours a day. The Bullhide belts ship in 2-3 days. A-G and Beltman 3-4 weeks.
    Glock 22, 27 Gen 4
    Ruger SP101 .357mag
    S&W 637 Airweight
    Ruger Single Six
    Ruger Blackhawk Bisley 45 Colt
    Mossberg 835 Grand Slam


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    Senior Member Array Old Sarge's Avatar
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    I'm sure it's possible, depending upon the situation. I've had a 1 1/2" Beltman belt for over a year, and it's by far the best belt I've ever had. But it presents a problem as well. I'm also a volunteer firefighter/first responder. I carry a pager 24/7 and cannot clip it onto the belt, since the belt is too thick. So I have to resort to clipping it onto one of my front bluejean pockets, with it tucked safely inside. Not as handy, since if you want anything out of that pocket, you have to remove the pager. Otherwise, go for it, great belt.

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    Senior Member Array WoodLark's Avatar
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    Yes.

    I had a Beltman belt. Wonderful quality, but way too thick to fit most of my holsters. Take a look at Liger, Galco Matrix, Blackhawk. All of these have the needed rigidity without the extra thickness.
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    "Can a belt be too thick?"
    The short answer is "YES" but, it depends. You're not really asking a simple question that can get a simple answer.
    Since I carry almost exclusively OWB these days and never IWB - I'll give you the most qualified answer that I can give you.

    Much depends on the exact holster style that you intend to carry OWB with.
    With an OWB holster it's more important to have a stiff holster than when carrying IWB.
    Stiff does not necessarily mean "Extra Thick" - Extra thick can cause problems but not always.
    Usually with a "normal" OWB holster that is a "Pancake Style" the belt can be thinner and it will still pull the firearm in tight to the body.

    BUT, If the firearm rides really high OWB it's more important that the belt be stiff and that stay stiff. Usually, a belt made from Hermann Oak leather will stay stiff for quite some time without having to be overly thick.
    The "rule of thumb" is that the higher more of the firearm is positioned above the belt line the stiffer the belt will need to be and the tighter you'll need to cinch your belt so that the holster and firearm will not have a tendency to flop down.
    All leather belts WILL soften up a bit after extended use. That is just the nature of leather in general.

    An overly thick belt will cause problems with some holster styles.
    Hummmm.....let me see if I can find you some examples.

    I'll use Milt Sparks as an example. http://www.miltsparks.com/
    With this style of holster you will need a high quality stiff belt but, an "Extra Thick" belt will be problematic getting the holster on and off the belt.
    It will be great "every day carry" rig though...with just a high quality leather belt of average thickness.



    With this holster style - the belt can be of average thickness & it will always pull in tight due to the flawless design of the holster & due to the fact that the firearm is not positioned super high.
    An Extra & Overly Thick belt though usually needs really wide slots.
    With slots that are farther apart from one another you might have to thread the belt through the one holster slot first - and then through the pant belt loop - and then through the second slot on the holster.
    If you'll need to do that - THAT depends on how the pant slots are positioned on whatever style of pant you happen to be wearing and what exact "O-Clock" position you want the holster on your waist.


    So I guess you can see how much everything just depends on:

    > What size & weight firearm you intend to carry.
    > How high- how much of the firearm will sit above the belt line.
    > How wide or narrow are the slots on the holster - and how close or far away are they from each other?

    Some holsters WILL go on to really thick belts (with effort) but, initially you'll really struggle getting the holster on & off the belt.
    The great thing about leather holsters is that eventually all of them will amazingly conform to the belt and the wearer.

  5. #5
    Senior Member Array wormy's Avatar
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    Thanks all for the great info. I will be carrying a Silver Dollar Pancake alot with my SP101. I guess I was wondering about a thick stiff belt snakeing through the belt slots. I also carry a Glock 27 OWB in a Fobus and IWB in a Comp-Tac C-Tac. Just looking for the best, thinnest belt for all. (If there is such a belt). I do have a Wilderness Instructor I like very much, but wanted a leather belt for my dressier clothes.
    Glock 22, 27 Gen 4
    Ruger SP101 .357mag
    S&W 637 Airweight
    Ruger Single Six
    Ruger Blackhawk Bisley 45 Colt
    Mossberg 835 Grand Slam

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    Member Array MdMike's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Old Sarge View Post
    I'm sure it's possible, depending upon the situation. I've had a 1 1/2" Beltman belt for over a year, and it's by far the best belt I've ever had. But it presents a problem as well. I'm also a volunteer firefighter/first responder. I carry a pager 24/7 and cannot clip it onto the belt, since the belt is too thick. So I have to resort to clipping it onto one of my front bluejean pockets, with it tucked safely inside. Not as handy, since if you want anything out of that pocket, you have to remove the pager. Otherwise, go for it, great belt.
    Get a pager holster. I am assuming that the pager is a Fire Dept. pager (like a motorola etc????) If so they make nylon belt holsters with a velcro closure on top to secure the pager. Like 10-12 buck last time I saw them at a show.

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    VIP Member Array automatic slim's Avatar
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    You have to consider not only thickness but width too. A 1.50" belt will fit almost any holster, but the loops on most pants are pretty narrow and have almost no stretch, which should also be considered.
    I've always used Galco 1.75" belts and have a hard time on anything except levi's. Also remember that if you want to switch buckles on a double thick belt, you may be in for a fight.
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    Quote Originally Posted by wormy View Post
    Thanks all for the great info. I will be carrying a Silver Dollar Pancake alot with my SP101. I guess I was wondering about a thick stiff belt snakeing through the belt slots. I also carry a Glock 27 OWB in a Fobus and IWB in a Comp-Tac C-Tac. Just looking for the best, thinnest belt for all. (If there is such a belt). I do have a Wilderness Instructor I like very much, but wanted a leather belt for my dressier clothes.
    One of my favorite belts is a 1 1/2" belt from Nate at UBG holsters. It's a bit thinner than some of my other belts but is still as rigid as needed and I've never had a problem getting it through the belt slots on any holster I've had. I've carried Glocks, a 5" 1911, a .40 BHP and a S&W 686 on it without issues over the last 3 1/2-4 years. It still looks good too.
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    Senior Member Array Haystacker's Avatar
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    Some folks believe that a single layer belt stretches more than a double layer belt that is glued and stitched. Think of the glued and stitched as different ply's that reinforce each other. I personally like the double layer belts. A double layered belt of 6/7 oz will be about the same thickness as a single layer 13 oz. Both belts should be less than 1/4 inch thick.
    Hope this helps.
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    Senior Member Array Tala's Avatar
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    I've not had trouble fitting a holster on my belt. I have had much more trouble with belt loops on pants - as Slim pointed out.
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    Pants off

    I have a Beltman 1 3/4" horsehide belt. It is stiff both directions and about 1/4" thick. I mostly use pancake style holsters. In order to thread the holster on I place the pants in my lap so the belt is straighter than if it is curved around my waist. For a quick dash to the inconvenience store it is a bit of trouble but for several hours of carry it is well worth the effort. It is the only belt I have owned that will handle an N frame S&W or Colt 1911 with aplomb. I did have to relieve the belt slots on a couple of my holsters though.

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    Ex Member Array Ram Rod's Avatar
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    Can a belt be too thick?
    Someone else had replied "yes". Correct. Just depends on your cell phone clip and what it will accommodate. Never had any problem with my holsters. I've been buying my custom made belts locally for the past four years. Made to my specs and never disappointed. The price beats anything I could find on the internet. Just FYI.

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    Member Array ABC111's Avatar
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    Wormy,

    Alot of good information above. A two ply belt will be much stronger than a single layer. A good quality two layer gun belt, glued and sewn, will do the job.

    As far as thickness, yes, you can get it too think. But if you stay with two layers of 6-7 oz or maybe 7-8 oz you will be OK. On most holsters you will need to be at .25 " in width or just a tad shy of .25.

    Most 6-7/7-8 oz straps will put you where you need to be. If you get anything over that you could run into problems with some makers.

    Hope this helps.

    Have a great Holiday Season.
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  14. #14
    VIP Member Array Old School's Avatar
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    I have one 2 ply belt that works perfectly well with my holsters with loops or cut outs but is a very tight fit with several of my quality IWB clip on holsters and I have to put the holster on the pants first then feed the belt through the holster clip. After that it keeps the holster nice and tight against my body.
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    Member Array loboleather's Avatar
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    Short answer is yes. A belt needs to be closely matched to the holster's belt attachment points to properly secure the holstered handgun in a consistent location and carry angle. If the belt is too thick to enter the belt attachment points you won't be able to get the holster on the belt. Some stretching can be expected while the holster is breaking-in, but there must be a reasonable fit to begin the break-in process.
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