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Anyone have experience with belly holsters

Discussion in 'Handguns: General Discussion' started by Flashpoint, May 7, 2004.

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  1. Flashpoint

    Flashpoint Member

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    I like to carry IWB, but here recently, even with pants plenty big, having a gun behind my hip causes pain that goes all the way down my leg. I have tried moving the holster to the 2:00 position but that digs into my belly when I sit or bend down. I was thinking about getting one of these, but I was wondering are they really any more comfortable and do they tend to ride up? I have carried OWB when I wear a shirt that hangs loose enough to not hand on the grip, but I was thinking that a belly holster could work with most any style of dress even with a tucked in shirt and I wouldn't have to worry about concealing the bulge on my hip. I'm 6'3" 220lbs with a 35/36-inch waist, considering my build can anyone see a potential problem with a belly holster?
     
  2. eyz

    eyz Member

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    I've tried three different types, the black elastic one, the nylon galco, and the uncle mikes mesh with holster that attaches to it. They are all uncomfortable and can be hot in the summer. Most comfortable is smartcarry.com. Get one a little bigger than you think you need with plenty of not to tight strap. Your other options are pocket carry with a smaller gun. A Kahr or Keltec. My preferred methods of carry are in order: Pocket, Smartcarry, IWB, pack or pouch. There is no open carry where I live.
     
  3. Flashpoint

    Flashpoint Member

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    does the smartcarry not jab you in the belly when you set?
     
  4. Zundfolge

    Zundfolge Member

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    I used to carry in an Action Direct Defender and its pretty comfy.

    Nothing conceals as well as a belly band. And its great to pack while wearing shorts and a t-shirt.

    I hesitate to bring it up, but I did notice one weird problem with wearing the belly band.

    It ... uh ... hmm ... it created a little ... uh ... bowel problem. :uhoh:

    For some reason some times when packing with it I'd have to go (#2) a lot and it was less then solid ... something about the pressure around the lower intestines or something. (sorry to bring this up, but I'm not the only person who's had this complaint).

    Oh and I didn't have any "ride up" problem ... but one could have a "ride down" problem (it tended to end up lower then it started)
     
  5. hnm201

    hnm201 Member

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    P3AT in pocket. Sig 230 or Makarov or Glock 26 in smartcarry. Comfortable. Totally concealed. Can wear it all day. I have about a three in overhang. No problem.
     
  6. Flashpoint

    Flashpoint Member

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    Never thought about that...kinda like sqeezing a tube of toothpaste.:uhoh:

    My question is did you notice any weight loss if so I'm gonna buy two:D
     
  7. Minute_Of_Torso

    Minute_Of_Torso Member

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    I purchased the Galco belly band about five months ago thinking, "Hey, this will work great!" Practical experience has shown me a couple of things:

    1. It appears that belly bands are not designed for those of us who've begun to "spread a little in the middle." This is true for me, the band slips up when I'm sitting (uncomfortable) and slips down when I'm standing or walking (really uncomfortable).

    2. As the weather gets warmer I get a terrible sweat problem under the band which just makes #1 above that much worse . . . one word - chafing!

    I think that if I were in better shape that the band may work nicely but for now I've just gone back to a regular belt-slide holster or an IWB SOB holster.
     
  8. eyz

    eyz Member

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    Smartcarry doesn't jab. Maybe slide it an inch or two to either side until its right then leave it. Don't try and carry a huge sidearm with it and thinner sidearms are always better. After work today i'm wearing one jogging. can't carry at my place of work due to a state law but use it after hours everyday.
     
  9. DigMe

    DigMe Member

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    http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?s=&threadid=72403

    Examine the above thread. There are some really good-looking alternatives there for people who want a belly-band alternative. Of course not all of them may be viable as the thread relates to a different question but I think there are some good related options there.

    brad cook
     
  10. 4v50 Gary

    4v50 Gary Moderator Staff Member

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    Had a PPK/S pop right out of the holster onto the ground. No thanks.
     
  11. MyRoad

    MyRoad Member

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    I love my SmartCarry. If I'm taking a long walk or just hanging out on the property and wearing sweat pants, I use one. I don't wear the gun in front though, I wear it on the side with the gun on my hip, as if the SC were a regular IWB holster. It's amazingly comfortable with a small gun like a Kahr K40, or even a Glock G36. I've never really tried it under regular pants - in that case I'd just carry IWB in a CompTac.
     
  12. Flashpoint

    Flashpoint Member

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    pop out of the sport holster or anouther holster?
     
  13. matsaleh

    matsaleh Member

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    I carried in an Uncle Mike's Belly Band for a While

    ... the one with the attachable holster, as metioned by another poster above.

    Pros:
    1) Very versatile. I could wear high or low, strong or weak. I normally wore it right over my solar plexus, weak side in about the same orientation one would have with a shoulder rig. Main reason for that is that I'm about 20-30 lbs overweight, and there is a natural "valley" between my man-boobies and my spare tire. :)

    2) Inexpensive. This was my first holster, and not having any idea how I wanted to carry, and not wanting to blow wads of cash on something I would ditch in a few weeks, I got the holster to tide me over while I researched my options at my leisure.

    3) Concealable. As mentioned above, it is very hard to detect. Also, it does not limit my choice of clothing as would an IWB. I can wear a T-shirt untucked, or a tucked-in button down shirt. In the latter case, responding to a situation would sacrifice some buttons, but who cares? I carried at my office for about 6 months this way and nobody ever noticed, even two trusted people who I told that I was carrying.

    Cons:

    1) Comfort. Do not try to wear this without an undershirt. Especially if your torso is hairy like mine. Even with an undershirt, after 8 hours your chest hairs may be all bent and pulled different ways from moving around. This was never too much of a problem for me - I would just go to a stall in the men's room and take it off for a minute and scratch the hell out of my chest to get things back in place.

    2) Accessibilty. In some cases it may be harder to access your gun than an IWB. With an untucked shirt, you have farther to reach for the gun if you reach up under the shirt. With a tucked shirt compared to a tuckable IWB, it's probably about the same because in either case you are tearing at your clothes to get to the gun.

    Hope this helps.
     
  14. Flashpoint

    Flashpoint Member

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    Thanks guys

    I think from what you have said it would not hurt to get one for the option of something different.

    I'll test it out since nobody seems to have any experience with this particular model and post the results.
     
  15. GSB

    GSB Member

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    I've actually had excellent results with them. Make sure you wear an undershirt underneath. With a loud Hawaiian print shirt over it, the gun is well hidden, and draw times are quick with a little practice. I've found this to be an extremely comfortable carry mode, although obviously others have had a different experience.
     
  16. Mark13

    Mark13 Member

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    I have the Uncle Mikes mesh one. I think it really depends on body type with belly bands. I have a 32" waist and decent shoulders, and I can only conceal directly on the side with a small gun, just above the hip. The thicker you are front to back the easier it should be for you to conceal something larger. I prefer a IWB holster for shorts/belt carry.

    The main problem I have with my belly band is its much slower on the draw, the way I'm carrying. The gun is secured by a velcro strap and this doesn't come free as quickly as a thumb-snap.
     
  17. Mikul

    Mikul Member

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    I love bellyband carry for many occasions. It can be worn with anything. When I carry at work, it's undetectable. When I'm wearing shorts without a belt, I can still carry.

    The ONLY comfortable position I've found to carry it in is just below my hip bones. In this position the hips help keep the band from riding up, and this also places the bellyband completely over my underpants which is a lot cooler than having elastic in direct contact with skin.
     
  18. jamz

    jamz Member

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    With Smartcarry or a bellyband, do you have to put it on before your shirt, or is it something you can strap on while in the car?

    -James
     
  19. Drizzt

    Drizzt Member

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    I have a great bellyband, but unfortunately, I do not believe you can get them anymore. It is one of Gunslinger's Improved Bellybands. Very comfortable, stays in place, and just works well with anything I'm wearing.
     
  20. Mikul

    Mikul Member

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    A bellyband really needs to be put on below the waist and under a shirt, but it certainly CAN be put on over a shirt, but it becomes as concealable as an IWB. For me, it's really a Hipband instead of a bellyband. Some people do wear it around their chests and use it like a shoulder holster.
     
  21. rolltide

    rolltide Member

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    I occasionally use a plain belly band below the waist. I position it so that the butt of the gun rides directly under my belt on the front weak side in a cross draw position. This is reasonably comfortable carry and absolutely undetectable with dress pants and a tucked in dress shirt. The gun never shifts or moves because it is locked down with the belt, like IWB carry. With a button up dress shirt, you just unbutton one of the shirt buttons over your belly button and reach through and grap the gun. With a T-shirt either tucked or untucked, you simply lift the shirt with your weak hand and grab the gun with your strong hand. One drawback as others have mentioned is that this is slow, but even with a tucked in, button up dress shirt, you are talking about a couple of seconds to get the gun out. The other is that in the hot humid summer months, a waterproof barrier must be used between the gun and the skin to protect the gun from sweat. A barrier like this came with my belly band, but it is not quite large enough. They are easily made out of a piece of vinyl.

    Roll Tide
     
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