Are these holsters worth it?

Are these holsters worth it?

This is a discussion on Are these holsters worth it? within the Defensive Carry Holsters & Carry Options forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; Gotta know this guys. I've always heard about Mitch Rosen and all these custom holster makers and how great they are. I use a Galco ...

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Thread: Are these holsters worth it?

  1. #1
    Senior Member Array allenruger's Avatar
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    Are these holsters worth it?

    Gotta know this guys. I've always heard about Mitch Rosen and all these custom holster makers and how great they are. I use a Galco and a Desantis holster and I want to know if there is a dramatic difference between these and one like Mitch Rosen's. I mean, I know we all want to own custom items but long wait times just seem kind of crazy to me. What am I missing? Thanks!


  2. #2
    JD
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    Well it ultimately depends on which Galco and Desantis holsters you are using, and which guns are being carried.

    For IWB carry if makes a BIG difference IMHO. The IWBs from Rosen, Sparks etc.etc. carry much flatter and more well balanced than say a Galco Royal Guard or Desantis Cozy Partner. For IWB it's all about the loop placement.

    On the above mentioned Galco and DeSantis rigs, the loops are right on the gun and close togeather, this adds thickness and doesn't support the holster as well as an IWB with the loops out further from the portion of the holster carrying the gun, spacing the loops out further makes the rig more stable, which also leads to being more comfortable as the weight is better distributed along the waistline and the belt.

    For OWB, I don't see much over all difference, I love my Galco Avenger OWB just as much as my Milt Sparks VMII.

    I don't know whay major non-custom makers like Galco and Desantis do not make a more well thought out IWB.

  3. #3
    Senior Member Array allenruger's Avatar
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    Sorry about that... I carry a G26 and use either a Desantis MiniSlide or a Galco Summer Comfort. Thanks

  4. #4
    Senior Member Array lance22's Avatar
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    There will be a difference:

    (1) In how and where retention is managed
    (2) In the quality of construction
    (3) In the qualilty of the hardware & how this affixes to the holster
    (4) In the quality of the finish
    (5) In the size and fit of the belt loops to YOUR belt
    (6) The time and means of molding the leather to your gun
    (7) Available options to make this YOUR holster, not everyone else's.

    You could look at it like this: An S-Series Mercedes and a Chevy Cobalt will both get you to work but we are not under any misconceptions about the differences between the two vehicles. In the world of holsters, there is roughly a $ 40.00 difference between OK and spectacular - the cost of meal at a restaurant will upgrade your purchase from "It'll do" to "WOW!" ... and that's why people like Mitch Rosen have so many loyal customers.

  5. #5
    Senior Member Array cockedlocked01's Avatar
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    There is a difference. On some things, it's subtle, but the overall F&F, comfort, & resale value (If you're so inclined, maybe you'll sell the gun down the road), is definitely in the custons advantage.

    There're some nice custom products out there that are not that much more expensive (Or are about the same) than a Galco or Desantis holster.
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  6. #6
    VIP Member Array Ti Carry's Avatar
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    Yep, there is a difference, most of the time a huge difference. If you decide on a custom holster, do careful research before deciding on who you want to go with.


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  7. #7
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    Well, Galco and Desantis have been making holsters for a very long time. Obviously their holsters are working fine for many people otherwise they would be out of business by now.

    My personal opinion is that the Galco owbs tend to close up after a few months which makes re-holstering more difficult but, not impossible. I've not bought one for years so I do not know if that is still the case.

    BTW Galco also has a CUSTOM Shop where they will fabricate true custom rigs.

    I personally like the fact that I can request a greater degree of cant or a skin shield from the custom makers plus I happen to like the exotic leathers.

    So...DO some people spend more & order a custom when a "ready made" will serve them just fine? - For Sure.

    Do I personally really appreciate that extra effort concerning stiffer leather selection and minute other attentions to small details? Like how the stitching is ended past the high stress points and the nicer hand boning. I do.

    Much of it also has to do with the fact that folks spend a lot of money for their personal self-defense firearms & they want them to live in a super nice house. I know I do.

    I also appreciate the individual hand finishing and the confidence that comes along with knowing that I've got the EXACT holster that I want.
    Would I die in a gunfight because my "off the shelf" rig had 5 degrees less cant? Probably not.

    Heck...this is America. Buy what you can afford and practice with your set-up and for the number of gun-fights you're going to get into in your lifetime you'll be well served.

    For me personally...I like being able to call a custom maker up and be able to specify where exactly on a hide I want my personal holster cut from.

    Should anybody feel terrible because they don't want to spend more money on a true custom?
    No...probably not.
    But, if and when you do get the exact holster that you want and your skill level can truly appreciate the subtle differences that make it tailored to you then it's difficult to go back to a production rig.

    So for me...even when I contact a custom maker...I don't say: Send me a XXY CoolCarry - I say: Make me a XXY CoolCarry BUT, I want it to have ABCD & add a CDEF and I want it blah blah blah with some shark skin. Whatever,,,,,,,,
    For me it's worth it to fork out the extra beans for a custom holster.

    For somebody else it might be overkill but, that's fine because I don't have to wear your holster and you don't have to carry in mine.
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  8. #8
    Member Array TerryD's Avatar
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    For IWB I went from a Galco $109 holster to an Andrews $70 holster.

    Spent less, only had to wait about 6 weeks, and there is a HUGE difference in the comfort (safety covered), on the Andrews to the uncovered Galco. Plus the horsehide Andrews used is thicker by far, and the attention to detail is downright astounding, especially for the price.

    Plus if you ever have to deal with Galco customer service, just realize you're wrong and they know everything, then you'll have no problems.
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  9. #9
    VIP Member Array Supertac45's Avatar
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    Those brands are good holsters, but I prefer Sparks.
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  10. #10
    Distinguished Member Array ripley16's Avatar
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    I have both custom and Galco holsters, (and others), and frankly I don't think there's a decernable difference between them. For everyday use my Galco gets the call. I only wear OWB. The Galcos I've used have always fit better than custom and wore just as well. Maybe IWB is different but as far as OWB goes, Galco is as good as anybody IMHO.

  11. #11
    Senior Member Array allenruger's Avatar
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    Thanks for all the replies. It does make sense that the position of the loops on a Galco IWB does make it a little thicker since they are right on top of the gun. JD... you brought up a good point about not understanding why companies like Galco don't make one of these holsters with the loops more spread out. To be honest I've never owned a holster like that but I bet it does make a difference on the comfort level. Oh, I might just be forced to acquire a custom holster to check the differences out for myself. But it will only be for research purposes and not for my enjoyment... honest.
    Allen

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  12. #12
    Senior Member Array dgg9's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JD View Post
    On the above mentioned Galco and DeSantis rigs, the loops are right on the gun and close togeather, this adds thickness and doesn't support the holster as well as an IWB with the loops out further from the portion of the holster carrying the gun, spacing the loops out further makes the rig more stable, which also leads to being more comfortable as the weight is better distributed along the waistline and the belt.
    There's a tradeoff, though: the spread-out-loop style is indeed more stable, more concealable, and maybe more comfortable. But they take up a lot of beltline real estate and can be a PITA to wrestle into place. Whereas the loops-on-top style goes on and off easier.

    Note that the better brands you listed -- Rosen, Sparks, etc -- ALSO make the loops-on-top style, so it isn't like the two holsters styles map into "cheap" and "high quality." In fact, both styles can be well made or cheaply made. As for why Galco, etc don't make the spread-loop style, I have no idea.

  13. #13
    JD
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    Quote Originally Posted by dgg9 View Post
    There's a tradeoff, though: the spread-out-loop style is indeed more stable, more concealable, and maybe more comfortable. But they take up a lot of beltline real estate and can be a PITA to wrestle into place. Whereas the loops-on-top style goes on and off easier.

    Note that the better brands you listed -- Rosen, Sparks, etc -- ALSO make the loops-on-top style, so it isn't like the two holsters styles map into "cheap" and "high quality." In fact, both styles can be well made or cheaply made. As for why Galco, etc don't make the spread-loop style, I have no idea.
    Very true, and I wouldn't buy those styles either, such as the Sparks Summer Special and whatever Rosen calls their model of similar fashion, I started with a Galco Royal guard and Summer Comfort after a brief stint of using a Fobus, and after trying the "spread loop" style I don't think I'll ever go back.

    The extra use of real estate doesn't bother me, I don't see it as loosing space on the belt as my rig is the only thing I wear on my strong side. And the other benefits of the design more than make up for it IMHO. When I wear the VMII I can almost not even feel the all steel 5" 1911 I carry, I could not say the same about my Galco Royal Guard. The Royal Guard is listed as $109.95 on Galco's website, so the avg. price of a VII isn't overly steep IMHO, it's just the wait time that's a pain, and there are ways to circumvent the wait period. The Summer Comfort is about half the price, it's below $70.00, and I wasn't overly fond of that model, it just didn't feel as sturdy.

    I also prefer the sweat shield that is not present on the Royal Guard and the Summer Comfort, but that's totally a matter of personal preference.

    I never stated that one was better quality than the other. I'm not going to say that the quality of the material is any better or worse pending on brands mentioned, although I will say that the overall appearance of the DeSantis rigs both in material and looks to be lesser quality, but I'm not a leather expert by any means.

    If I had to rate the holsters that I am familiar with, I would put Desantis on the bottom, then Galco, then Sparks, but that's just a matter of opinion based on my experiences with each brand and even that will vary on which exact holster type and model being used.

    I've also tried BladeTech, Comp-Tac, Uncle Mikes, 5-Shot Leather, Rhome Desibens, G-Code, Don Hume and a few others that I probably can't remember but that's topic for a whole other thread.

    As is with almost everything in the firearms industry, your mileage may vary, and this is all my opinion which is always changing. I try to make an effort to try new things, be it holsters, mags, ammunition, firearms, and clothing to better base my opinions but for now that's just how I feel on the IWB thing.

  14. #14
    Senior Member Array dgg9's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JD View Post
    The extra use of real estate doesn't bother me, I don't see it as loosing space on the belt as my rig is the only thing I wear on my strong side.
    True, but where I see the problem is that the holster takes up so much space fore and aft that I personally found it difficult to shift it around to find the most comfortable spot.

    And the other benefits of the design more than make up for it IMHO. When I wear the VMII I can almost not even feel the all steel 5" 1911 I carry,
    Well, here we agree. I can only IWB a G17 comfortably with that style (I use a FIST #20). The spread-loops style really comes into its own with big, heavy guns.

    But it is a hassle to wrestle into position, and I've found that small to medium guns can be comfortably carried with the loop-on-top style. Naturally this is all subjective, but I found I can carry a G19 with the loop-on-top Sidearmor IWB but not a G17 with the same style holster.

    So for me there's a cutoff in pistol size and weight where I'm forced to invest the time to put on the spread-loop IWB. But for a quick errand, there's no comparison: I can slide the G19-in-Sidearmor into place in 5 seconds.

  15. #15
    Distinguished Member Array CT-Mike's Avatar
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    I am currently carrying my XD .40 Service in a DeSantis Cozy Partner while patiently waiting for my KD Dakota Defender to arrive. The belt loops are too close together, the leather is too stiff and doesn't comfort to the shape of my body very well. It does the job, barely. It was $50 at the local gnu shop, and the Dakota was $77 ($7 shipping). Granted the DeSantis was in my hands instantly and the Dakota is a 14-16 week wait, but I am certain that it will be worth it.
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