Duty Belt Questions


February 21, 2007, 06:49 AM
I just picked up a very nice use Gould & Goodrich Holster for my S&W 1006 off e-bay for next to nothing ($1 + shipping). This is my first holster. Now I would like to get a belt but I need some advice.

When you buy a duty belt do you buy the belt the same size as the waist of your pants; e.g. if I where a 36" waist then I would buy a 36" belt?

If I want to wear a belt with jeans and stuff for outdoor work/hunting what width do I want?

I noticed that most appeared to be lined. Do I want I lined belt or what features do I want to look for outdoor carry?

I was thinking of looking for a use Gould & Goodrich on e-bay since I thought the holster looked like good quality. What brands would you folks recommend in a belt?

Thanks for the advice.

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February 21, 2007, 06:56 AM
I never had much experience with a "proper" duty belt until I took a security job here. In Qatar we had gunbelts, but it's different when they're over fatigues.

Anyway...what width? Well, that depends. How big is the belt loop on your holster? Personally, I like 2" nylon gunbelts, but 2.25" is the old-school cop standard.

For outdoorsy use, you're going to want to get a good leather gunbelt. Try Bianchi and/or Safariland. They still make leather police type gear.

Oh, and pick up a set of belt keepers. These are nice because you use them to bolt your gunbelt over your pants belt. It helps stablize the load and keeps it from shifting.

AFAIK, you want a gunbelt that's a bit bigger than your waist size, since it goes over a regular belt. But, most are adjustable for a range of belt sizes, so just pick the one that's closest to you.

February 22, 2007, 06:10 AM
Shows how little I know about duty belts. So I would wear the duty belt over a normal belt not in place of a duty belt?

I guess I would need to go like 2" longer to account for my regular belt, so if I wear a 36" belt I would want a 38" duty belt. A then a keeper links the two belts togather.

Did not know any of this. I was just planning on getting a duty belt that would fit though the jean loops and wearing it that way.

good to know.

February 22, 2007, 10:18 AM
Cops rule of thumb.....inner belt, the belt which goes on your jeans through your pants belt loops, two sizes bigger than what you wear. Outer belt or duty belt, worn over your inner belt and where all your accessories are carried i.e. holster,cuff case, baton, knife pouch, etc, etc, four sizes bigger than your waist. Example 32" waist, 34" inner belt, 36" outer belt. BTW, the belt keeper advice is great, you'll need them

February 22, 2007, 10:26 AM
Most duty belts don't come in size 36, size 38, etc. Most come in Small, Medium, Large, and X-Large, with each size adjusting to fit a range. Just pick the one that your waist size is in and you'll be fine.

The main reason you don't wear a duty belt as a pants belt is because they're too big. A proper gunbelt runs from 2" to 2.25" wide, with some as wide as 2.5" to 3". It won't fit through the loops on most pants.

If you just want a stiff holster belt that's 1.75" so it can be worn as a pants belt, check out the 5.11 "Trainer Belt".

February 22, 2007, 10:29 AM
If you are talking about daily wear (as a cop, guard, etc) then soutex50 has it right. Belt keepers are a must have item and get the kind with a good solid snap (http://www.galls.com/google/style.html?assort=general_catalog&style=NP102). In my experience the velcro keepers just don't hold up to daily use and quickly get weak. Another tip on the outer (Duty) belt is try and get one with two rods on the buckle like this one (http://www.galls.com/google/style.html?assort=general_catalog&style=LP145) (not recommending this specific belt, just showing the style). Having the two rods keeps the belt from twisting and provides a much more stable platform and believe me your hips will thank you at the end of the day.

He also gives you good advice on sizeing.

Now on the other hand if you are talking about civilian carry then you probably just want a nice heavy (double thickness) belt about 1 3/4 inch wide. If you are planning on IWB then the rule of thumb is "two will do" in other words you want a belt that is 2" larger than your normal size.

As an LEO I used to have this exact belt (http://www.galls.com/google/style.html?assort=general_catalog&style=TE102) (though made by a different manufacturer). I liked the almost infinite adjustablility but I broke the buckle on the first one I had and that made for a bad shift until I could get a replacement belt.

Black Knight
February 22, 2007, 01:28 PM
Most makers of leather duty belts add 2 inches to the length so the will fit over the trouser belt. Gould and Goodrich is a quality manufacturer. They used to be Smith and Wesson leather before S&W sold the leather business. You will need a set of belt keepers. The makers of nylon duty belts size them in small, medium, large, and extra-large. Buying a belt on line from someone other than a maker or dealer can be iffy. If you want a new one may I suggest you look at Gall's Inc.. They are the largest police equipment dealer in the country. They have very good prices. You may be able to get a new one for little more than the cost of one on e-Bay.

February 22, 2007, 02:12 PM
Based on THR advice I bought a belt from thebeltman.net (http://www.thebeltman.net) for everyday wear (i.e., through the belt loops on my pants). They're a custom maker in Apex, NC with Internet ordering.

The model I got was double thickness for stiffness to help support a holster. They also offer a plastic stiffener if that isn't enough, and a Velcro liner to help keep certain kinds of holsters in place.

Widths are 1.25, 1.5, and 1.75 inches. I went with the middle size, and it fits the belt loops on all my pants. I'm happy with it.

Black Knight
February 22, 2007, 08:18 PM
Did you buy a dut holster? If so the proper belt width would be 2 or 2 1/4 inches. If you bought a concealment holster usually you need a 1 3/4 inch belt. A 1 1/2 inch belt might do but the wider the trouser belt the more stable the holster will be. Provided you get a quality belt to begin with.

February 25, 2007, 01:10 AM
I use a belt similar to that in the link posted by ZeSpectre. I holds up well. I also advocate snap-style belt keepers.

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