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Local training class forbids serpa holsters

Discussion in 'General Gun Discussions' started by hoohaa310, Jun 6, 2012.

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  1. hoohaa310

    hoohaa310 Member

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    I work part time at the gun counter of a local shop. I had a guy come in looking for a holster for a Glock 19. I asked him if it was gonna be for OC or CC and he said just OC for at the range and around his property. I brought him over and started going through the pluses and minuses of each ones we had, with my personal recommendation going towards the Blackhawk SERPA holster just because I like how it locks and I like the dual carry option either belt loop or holster.

    Well, as soon as I say "serpa" he says he can't buy that holster because he's taking a defensive pistol class and the company hosting it forbids that specific type of holster because "it's unsafe" (his words telling me their policy).


    While I completely understand and agree with a trainer or companies right to allow certain practices or products or to not allow them, I was just kind of shocked. I've seen the one instance on YouTube of the gentleman who shot himself in the leg with his pistol while using a serpa holster I wouldn't think this one instance would cause a company or trainer to outright forbid a certain type of holster in a class.


    Anyone else heard of this?
     
  2. JEB

    JEB Member

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    that is odd. i honestly cant think of any reason why it would be banned.
     
  3. robMaine

    robMaine Member

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    There have been some complaints about the way you release the retention and that under stress you will continue pushing in, and once the gun exits the holster your finger will drop into the trigger guard, possible causing an ND.

    I don't see how it could happen, but apparently it has....
     
  4. Quat

    Quat Member

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    Some people also apparently try to push the button while reholstering, miss, and get their finger on the upper lip of the holster and catch the trigger with the finger as they push down.
     
  5. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

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  6. SpentCasing

    SpentCasing Member

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  7. robMaine

    robMaine Member

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    I have seen that before, and I feel that a holster design is being scapegoated for poor trigger discipline, I know an accident can happen to anyone, but these holsters don't strike me as more dangerous then any other design.
     
  8. 9mmepiphany

    9mmepiphany Moderator

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    Some of it is a kneejerk reaction to what is fundamentally a training issue.

    However, I'll point out the the grand daddy of training schools...Gunsite in AZ...allows and welcomes students using the Serpa in their classes
     
  9. guzzi

    guzzi Member

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    serpa

    There are a whole bunch of folks using the Blackhawk Serpa in IDPA, me included.
     
  10. MrCleanOK

    MrCleanOK Member

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    I have two serpa holsters, and I agree that the safety issue is largely a training problem. Unfortunately, these training schools and instructors have no control over the level of training of the students who show up for their classes. I have no argument with classes that ban or discourage them.

    Another issue with serpa holsters is that debris can lock up the retention mechanism. After realising this, I will be looking for a new holster before my next government-sponsored tour of the world.

    Sent from my ADR6350 using Tapatalk 2
     
  11. ClickClickD'oh

    ClickClickD'oh Member

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    FLETC, Front Sight and several other major schools have banned the Serpa. With proper training and technique, the Serpa is perfectly safe. Without it, it can be dangerous. Schools don't want liability.
     
  12. hoohaa310

    hoohaa310 Member

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    I told the customer (and he knew it was purely my personal opinion) that I wouldn't pay money to a company/ trainer that told me what holster I could and couldn't use, rather than being able to train someone no matter what holster they'd like to use.
     
  13. Skribs

    Skribs Member

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    The guy shooting his leg was IMO a problem with a break from KISS. He had two completely different holsters for two completely different pistols, and the combination resulted in him using the wrong draw stroke.
     
  14. toivo

    toivo Member

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    I know of a local trainer who has also banned them. He claims to have personally witnessed two ADs by Serpa users in his classes, done while drawing, not while re-holstering.

    I don't think the holsters are unsafe for people who know how to use them, but I can understand why instructors and schools would have concerns about liability.
     
  15. hoohaa310

    hoohaa310 Member

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    Wouldn't happen to be Rochester Personal Defense would it? 'cause that's who the customer told me had banned them.
     
  16. 9mmepiphany

    9mmepiphany Moderator

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    Just for clarification, so that folks reading this thread can make an informed decision.

    The holster we are talking about is the Blackhawk CQC {holster, with the} Serpa {lock}. They are currently in their third generation. There is also a difference between their Sport holster and their Tactical/LE holster.

    The Serpa is released by applying pressure on a release paddle that levers the retention device out of engagement with the trigger guard. The paddle places the trigger finger about the line of the trigger...if the holster was not there, the finger would be correctly placed on the "safe/index spot" on the frame of the gun.

    The problem occurs when users want to "press in" on the release, which causes the retention no lock the gun in the holster...as they have to prematurely lift their finger to withdraw the gun. Rather than reset, release pressure and try again, they try to muscle it out by gripping and pulling harder. This response is what often causes the trigger finger, when the holster does release, to find it's way onto the trigger in a grasping motion.

    The Serpa lock helps a user to learn the correct finger placement on the pistol during the drawing motion, by rewarding it with a smooth release. The Gen3 models even have a groove molded into the holster body to guide a correctly placed finger
     
  17. Owen Sparks

    Owen Sparks member

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    Nothing can be made idiot proof because idiots are so imgenious. They will find a way to hurt themselves.
     
  18. Big Bad Bob

    Big Bad Bob Member

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    I find all this controversy about the serpa holster to be rather interesting. Ive read the comments and watched the videos. I carried my sidearm in a Serpa in two configurations in Afghanistan, a paddle holster on my hip when on the FOB and strapped to the front of my plate carrier in sector. I climbed over walls, waded through canals etc. in a rather dirty, dusty environment and i never had the issues that these training schools seem to create. I am not doubting that these were actual issues and not fabrications but I personally in theatre never witnessed these types of problems with the holster myself or another soldier. I wasnt the only one to use a Serpa, my entire unit used them in several different options, drop leg, chest mounted, etc. without issue. The Marine Corps uses the Serpa and its widely used throughout the Army. Most guys I know who are issued a sidearm use the Serpa.

    Given that the Army is now eliminating the PMAG, if TACOM and PEO Soldier were able to create these issues I am for sure they would have issued a safety memo altering units to stop use of this holster, as would the Marine Corps.
     
  19. loose noose

    loose noose Member

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    In April of last year, I went and requalified as a certified Range Master, at Front Sight in Pahrump Nevada. During that whole time I used a BlackHawk Serpa holster. Never had a problem with the Range Officers telling me I couldn't use it. Also in that flick he clearly states it had nothing to do with the holster it was blamed solely on himself.:confused: I'm not sure if Front Sight has outlawed them or not, but I would hardly think that they did.
     
  20. WardenWolf

    WardenWolf member

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    Serpas are a bad idea for SO many reasons. Requiring you to use pressure from your trigger finger to release it, in a direction that, if you accidentally follow through, can cause you to hit the trigger, is just plain stupid. It's just dumb from an ergonomics standpoint. You're going to be holding that lever down as you draw the gun. If you get the gun out before you release your finger, BANG!

    All of you who use them for actual carry need to think long and hard about what might happen during a high-stress situation where you're not thinking about your draw and instead using gross muscle movements. This CAN happen, and it can happen to YOU. Don't sugarcoat it. These holsters are NOT safe.

    As for the instructor, he was simply trying to protect his students and himself from a design that is inherently more prone to inducing accidental discharges. The last thing anyone wants is a round going off in the wrong direction and hitting someone.
     
  21. 9mmepiphany

    9mmepiphany Moderator

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    If you follow through, your finger will end up on the frame above the trigger where it belongs. The direction of the pressure is inward toward the side of the pistol, not downard or back toward the trigger

    I never release my finger during the draw as I'm not applying any more pressure than I would with a non-serpa holster. If you are, it sounds like you might be pressing in on the lever...I addressed that 4 post above yours

    I carried mine during admin and escort duties...that didn't require a complete duty belt. The only time I've fumbled the draw was when I first got the holster and thought about having to depress the lever. When I don't think about it and just execute a normal draw from the holster, the Serpa releases smoothly.

    I've used in in IDPA competition and I give more thought to insuring a get a grip that depresses the grip safety than to contacting the Serpa lever
     
  22. zoom6zoom

    zoom6zoom Member

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    This. In addition, you should be using the ball of your finger, not the tip, so your finger stays parallel to the slide and doesn't curve or move inward.

    I too have a local instructor who didn't allow Serpas in his classes. He's since changed his mind.
     
  23. WardenWolf

    WardenWolf member

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    "Should be" is the key here. When scrambling to draw your gun in an emergency, things happen.
     
  24. crossrhodes

    crossrhodes Member

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    Plus One

    Plus 1 for Big Bad Bob. I think it's a training issue. This reminds me of when a certain federal agency had a lot of ND's and blamed it on the Glock.
     
  25. FIVETWOSEVEN

    FIVETWOSEVEN Member

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    I can press as hard with my finger as I want and all it does is end up on the frame, keep it flat like how it supposed to be as both design of the holster and the way you keep your finger off the trigger.

    One word for you, training.

    That's like saying you'll forget to take the safety off of a 1911 and such. Do you think that the cowboys of old forgot to thumbcock their revolvers? How is that different to those that use Serpas? Train like you fight, fight like you train.
     
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