How to spot a well-conceived paddle (holster)

This is a discussion on How to spot a well-conceived paddle (holster) within the Defensive Carry Holsters & Carry Options forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; Early paddle holsters were crude; the paddle was treated as a simple "blade" and a strap was included for the waistbelt to keep the holster ...

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Thread: How to spot a well-conceived paddle (holster)

  1. #1
    Senior Member Array rednichols's Avatar
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    How to spot a well-conceived paddle (holster)

    Early paddle holsters were crude; the paddle was treated as a simple "blade" and a strap was included for the waistbelt to keep the holster in place. The first is a Safety Speed from the 60s, the second a Hume that is contemporary:

    1 (1).jpg1 (1).jpg

    Paddles have sophisticated considerably since ancient times, a message not yet received by some makers. This is an Uncle Mike's:

    1 (2).JPG

    Pioneers of the moulded plastic paddles came up with these, but still have fallen short. They have a single spur in the centre of the paddle in an effort to keep the paddle from pulling loose from the waistband. They are Galco (one of no less than four versions that the company has produced) and an older Safari:

    2 (1).jpg2 (2).jpg2 (3).jpg

    But a well-conceived paddle does more than act as a simple blade. See next entry . . ..

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  3. #2
    Senior Member Array rednichols's Avatar
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    A well-conceived paddle doesn't simply suspend the holster from the waistband. The first is a DeSantis, the second is used by Elite Systems and copied by several others:

    3 (1).jpg3 (2).jpg

    Note they have barbs on both the right and the left of the paddle, to keep the holster level along the waistline. And that the open end is shaped to allow the paddle to tip into the waistband without a struggle. The combination makes them work like hunting arrowheads: easy in, difficult out.

    This one is the DeSantis again. It was designed around a female Federal agent to accomodate a woman's hourglass figure, and to actually transfer the weight to her hip. Note that there is no belt though one can be used, and that the paddle is actually resting on her hip rather than hanging from the waistband (lots of daylight through the paddle's tunnel, and the waistband is not distorted):

    4 (1).jpg4 (2).jpg

    In the meantime, while all this learning was going on, here's a Kramer that has gone full circle; the leather strip along the open end of the "paddle" is meant to stabilise the holster along the waistband; from the above it's clear that this is window dressing, and the strap is what keeps the holster in position after it passes around a belt:

    5.jpg

    One can't call that a paddle holster any longer; the ergonomic solutions have advance to far in 50 years.

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    Distinguished Member Array dangerranger's Avatar
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    With the gun suspended off her hip wont it bounce as she walks or runs? Ive had a couple of paddle holsters, and they have always been for guns that were too big to be comfortable for all day carry. The kind of guns that I couldn't wait to take off as soon as I got home or in the truck. I cant imagine that separation being comfortable. But maybe that's just my choice of gun. DR

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    Sponsor Array High Noon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rednichols View Post
    In the meantime, while all this learning was going on, here's a Kramer that has gone full circle; the leather strip along the open end of the "paddle" is meant to stabilize the holster along the waistband; from the above it's clear that this is window dressing, and the strap is what keeps the holster in position after it passes around a belt:


    5.jpg
    One can't call that a paddle holster any longer; the ergonomic solutions have advance to far in 50 years.

    If I can remember correctly. That was an old Desantis designed paddle. They got rid of it when Red made them the Viper paddle series, pictures in Reds above post. Kramer just copied it.

    Red did I miss anything or did Desantis copy it also. How far does that exact one really go back. I have a feeling from "experience", it pre dates Desantis. But I can only comment from when I stepped into the picture.

    Michael
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    Senior Member Array rednichols's Avatar
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    Michael, the Kramer paddle one could think of as from the New York school of design; I believe it was Theodore over at Seventrees who used it first (checked his catalogue; the paddle there is a large, square suede-covered plate; and not contoured like the Kramer/DeSantis of old). I know there are good reasons for a maker to use it (too difficult and expensive to design and tool their own moulded paddle), but no good reasons for someone to BUY a holster with such a so-called paddle.

    Dangerranger: the pic is not meant to tell you that there should be space between the girl and the pistol; she's wearing low-rider jeans, which isn't correct for concealment. The pic is only meant to show the weight transfer to the girl's hip; worn with higher waistband jeans, the grip would be tight against the ribcage without being uncomfortable, out enough to clear the breast (God bless girls) and low enough that she can clear leather. In my post I wasn't selling female paddles, because only DeSantis and Aker have true female paddles; my post is about paddles in general. The DeSantis female paddle happened to be the one I had handy (FBI circa 1990); the matching male paddle has the same profile from the rear, but carries the holster straight up and higher:

    desantis paddle male.jpg
    Last edited by rednichols; November 13th, 2012 at 04:01 AM.

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