Comparing the Milt Sparks Versa Max 2 and the Comp-Tac MTAC Holsters


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MisterMike
March 31, 2009, 03:33 PM
First, the obligatory photos, hot-linked from the manufacturers' respective websites . . .

The Versa Max 2 (VM2):

http://www.miltsparks.com/images/Photos/VM-2_large.jpg

The MTAC:

http://www.comp-tac.com/images/G19%20Minotaur%20New%20Clips.jpg

I have a brief history of using tuckables, but I wanted to find something that was really usable and really comfortable. Since I live in a jurisdiction where very few people can carry concealed legally, I feel that it's extremely important for my weapon to be completely undetectable. The SmartCarry meets that criterion, but sometimes it just isn't the most comfortable solution.

So, life has brought me to the point where I have a Milt Sparks Versa Max 2 for my Glock 26 and a Comp-Tac MTAC for the 26 and my Glock 23. Here's how it all shakes out:

First, the hands-down winner, in terms of beauty and craftmanship is the VM2. It's a beautiful piece of leatherwork, for which you pay a bit more money (and wait a bit longer). The MTAC is also nicely made, but there's just no way, in my estimation, for a hybrid holster to match the beauty of an all-leather creation.

Some of my comments may not apply to every variation of these holsters. I use the VM2 with Milt's Kydex clips and the MTAC with Kydex C-hooks. In both instances, I do so because I believe that these are significantly less visible than the respective makers' standard attachments. In the case of the VM2, that would be two leather strips that loop over your belt, and in the case of the MTAC, it would be a "standard" clip that also goes over the top of the belt. The optional attachments make the holsters significantly less visible, because they are largely positioned in back of your belt, rather than on top of it.

Once the holsters are in place (I wear at about the 4:30 position), they're pretty similar in comfort, but the MTAC wins by a hair--it's simply thinner and the leather is more flexible. It does pretty much "disappear" once it's on. However, in saying that I'd note that it's not a huge difference--the VM2 is a very close second.

Where the MTAC pulls ahead is in the ease of attachment. Now, I'll acknowledge that this wouldn't be a problem if I could just be content with the standard VM2 leather loops, but I can't, because of my concerns about concealment. The Kydex clips that Milt has elected to use are wide and incredibly tightly "sprung." As a result, while the VM2 is never going to move once you get it attached, it's a total pain in the neck to use. I find it impossible to just slip it on--I have to drop my trousers and wrestle with the clips for at least a couple of minutes. Frankly, I think the clips are poorly designed. My belief is that the clips, if made about half as wide as they are, would present much less resistance when you're donning the holster and would provide a level of security in mounting well beyond anything you might ever encounter.

My MTAC, on the other hand, uses (optional) Kydex C-clips. Because they are substantially more flexible, it's very easy to don the MTAC--you simply loosen your belt, slip the clips over your waistband, and then pop your belt into the "C" of the clip. A 10-15 second operation, versus a couple of minutes with the VM2.

The MTAC runs about $25 less than the VM2 and is delivered within two weeks, versus four months or longer for the VM2.

My ratings--which refer to holsters employing optional Kydex clips--may not apply to other variations of these holsters, but I would rate the MTAC above the VM2. No, it's not nearly as handsome a piece of work, but it is far easier to don (and remove), provides as much retention safety, and is slightly more comfortable than the VM2. When I combine these considerations with the MTAC's lower cost and faster delivery, the winner is clear.

I'll end this by saying that it would have been a much closer contest (for me, anyway), if Milt Sparks had put a little more throught into the usability of his Kydex clips. They're a total pain in the neck to use, but he makes a beautiful, high-quality product that is worth your consideration. As for me, I'm going to do some Dremel surgery on my VM2's Kydex clips, to see if I can come a bit closer to perfection.

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DigMe
April 10, 2009, 03:12 PM
I don't know how the Sparks holster attaches the clips but is there a way to attach a set of Comp-Tac clips to the VM2?

I bought an MTAC recently too for my XD45 compact. This was to replace a Crossbreed Supertuck that I sent back during the trial period. The MTAC is wonderful. Best holster I've ever had or handled. Very comfortable and excellent concealment. My 45 easily disappears under a t-shirt with less bulge than any other holster I've ever had. I previously had a CTAC for my XD9 subcompact before I sold them and it was not comfortable against bare skin. I wanted a hybrid holster this time for that reason and it works..no discomfort at all against skin.

Thanks for the review - I had considered a Sparks holster but the wait time and increased price plus past positive experience with Comp-Tac swayed me to the MTAC...I'm also a fan of the kydex.

bc

The Mayor
April 11, 2009, 12:33 AM
DigMe,

Please explain what you like about the Comp-Tac over the Crossbreed as I just ordered the super tuck. It was pretty much the flip of a coin because they both were what I was looking for. Also I want it to handle both 3" & 5" 1911's.

In the spirit of no hijack, I will compare the super tuck to my VM II, which is now the best holster I own, that I got 'back in the day' of the 3 month wait.

DigMe
April 11, 2009, 03:08 AM
Mayor,

More comfortable against bare skin, more compact, softer and better quality leather, better quality kydex that fully covers the muzzle of the gun and easily adjustable retention. When I first received the supertuck I was a little surprised by the homemade look of the kydex as I was used to the high qualitykydex of the CTAC in the past. Crossbreed are great people though and I wish the ST would have worked out for me. I did buy a belt from them afterwards and I prefer that over my Beltman belt quality-wise and it's real close to my Rafter S. Good belts.

brad

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