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View Full Version : Is a gun belt necessary?


ak-473690
May 12, 2011, 05:19 PM
I am just starting to carry and I dont know if a "gun belt" makes a difference. Is there any advantage?

shootniron
May 12, 2011, 05:21 PM
Makes all of the difference in the world. The belt is what actually holds the gun on your body. You really will not understand the difference they make until you try one. A gun belt even makes difference with pocket carry.

lawnboy
May 12, 2011, 05:23 PM
I think so.

They need not be expensive. A serviceable gun belt costs only a few dollars more than a decent regular mens belt. I have no idea what womens belts cost.

rigby06
May 12, 2011, 05:24 PM
The heavier the grade of belt and the thicker it is the more it distribute the weight of the weapon across your entire waist. A good belt also has the advantage of lasting longer for everyday use, even with a weapon attached to it.

ak-473690
May 12, 2011, 05:35 PM
I am going to buy a holster from crossbreed. I guess I will just include a gun belt also

9mm
May 12, 2011, 05:39 PM
$30 Blackhawk CQC, EDC for past 9 months, nothing else ;) even in "nice" clothes, I just swap out the black one with my tan. Yes you can be saved with the belt, via airlift/climb what ever else..

hogcowboy
May 12, 2011, 05:47 PM
A cheap belt will make a good holster seem cheap. But a good belt will make cheap holster seem good. Or something like that. A good belt IS very important in other words.

Jimmy10mm
May 12, 2011, 05:55 PM
Since most, or many of them are "double" belts, isn't that unnecessary for a IWB. ? I could see it with a holster worn on the hip. Seems to me those would be stiffer and somewhat uncomfortable. I don't have one and have been wearing my Sparks IWB with a Kahr MK40 comfortably, and with no problems, in an ordinary 1 1/2" work belt. :confused:

lawnboy
May 12, 2011, 06:04 PM
jimmy10mm wrote:
Since most, or many of them are "double" belts, isn't that unnecessary for a IWB. ? I could see it with a holster worn on the hip. Seems to me those would be stiffer and somewhat uncomfortable. I don't have one and have been wearing my Sparks IWB with a Kahr MK40 comfortably, and with no problems, in an ordinary 1 1/2" work belt

I found that a nice, stiff belt from 5.11 made IWB carry more comfortable. My previous belt had lost quite a bit of stiffness, although it was also a "gunbelt". New belt, more comfort. Despite the fact that it is pretty stiff.

NWCP
May 12, 2011, 06:21 PM
A well made holster can't really be appreciated without a decent gun belt. I always carry with a reenforced gun belt. JMHO

TBT
May 12, 2011, 06:45 PM
I've found that it matters very little with IWB carry personally. I don't notice a difference myself.

Kreyzhorse
May 12, 2011, 07:27 PM
The heavier the grade of belt and the thicker it is the more it distribute the weight of the weapon across your entire waist. A good belt also has the advantage of lasting longer for everyday use, even with a weapon attached to it.

+1. If you carry a heavy gun, a good leather gun belt is more important than the holster you use.

Now, you can carry a gun with any cheap belt, but until you carry one with an actual gun belt, you don't understand how well they support gun making it easier to carry and conceal.

Check out www.thebeltman.net His work isn't cheap, but it will last a very long time with proper care. My first gun belt cost $50 and lasted for a year before it broke down. My beltman cost $100 and is 5 years old and still going strong.

shootniron
May 12, 2011, 07:42 PM
Check out www.thebeltman.net His work isn't cheap, but it will last a very long time with proper care.

This is true. I just got my latest belt from him last week (have it on now)and the quality is still the same. Great belts.......

Leatherman-Cowboy
May 12, 2011, 08:45 PM
Hey ak-473690
It makes ALL the difference.This is what I carry,and it's all heavy,but I also made my self a thick 1.5" wide belt to carry it.I dont even know that I carry a 1911 and knive.
Thank you,
Henry
ps...the small belts are a joke,and makes it a pain.
http://i351.photobucket.com/albums/q473/Leatherman-Cowboy/Cowboy%20Gear/019.jpg
http://i351.photobucket.com/albums/q473/Leatherman-Cowboy/Cowboy%20Gear/011-Copy-1.jpg

Ringolevio
May 13, 2011, 01:13 AM
I don't do IWB, so I don't know how critical a good belt is for that. But for OWB carry (as with many other things), a good stiff belt can help!

I think just as important as the belt's stiffness (with leather this is usually achieved with a double thickness) is the belt's width. I like a 1.75" belt, which still fits in the loops of most jeans or work pants. For dress trousers, you can use a narrower belt or have your belt loops made bigger.

A lot of guys here seem to swear by The Beltman, but I get my leather belts from Bob Mernickle,
http://www.mernickleholsters.com/pb/pb7.html
Figure on paying $100 or so. I think it's worth it. His belts are way heavier than even the Bianchi and Safariland belts I used to use, and those were nothin' to sneeze at!

I would also advise that, for concealment, go for plain leather, no "Lazy 8" stitch or basketweave; those kind of shout "pistolero".

I used to know detective-types who would wear their buckle on the side, presenting only leather from the front view, on the theory that a shiny buckle made a target in low light. But if you're carrying a holster and a couple of spare mags, a buckle on the side is just going to get in the way. But I still wouldn't go for a big, shiny "rodeo" buckle. But that's just me.

For hot weather wear (to avoid perspiration damage to leather), or just to go cheaper than leather, a fabric belt from Wilderness Tactical or 5.11 works just fine (I use one with a fabric holster from WRB). Once again, get the stiffest belt (with a stiffening layer inside), preferably in 1.75" width. That should only set you back around $30 for the 5.11, although the Wilderness can be twice that.

Don't skimp on a belt; a good one is a wise investment.

Leatherman-Cowboy
May 13, 2011, 01:30 AM
Hey Ringolevio
I agree-thick leather is the way to go.I shoot SASS,and made my own leather+holsters.It feel's great because the belt is wide.I made the belt in the picture,and it's almost 1/4 thick.
Thank you,
Henry

ClydeFrog
May 13, 2011, 01:45 AM
A proper "gunbelt" or a belt that can fully support a loaded firearm, spare pistol magazines, white light, handcuffs/restraints(if needed) or a folder knife/blade is a smart move.
There are well made leather & nylon belts you can buy from open sources.
Some designs like Mitch Rosen, Bianchi or Galco have narrow widths in the front to "appear" more like a regular dress belt.
I have & use a lined black nylon Unkle Mike's belt that fits most pants or uniforms. There are many styles, colors, sizes to pick from now.
Clydefrog
www.5.11tactical.com www.Mitchrosen.com www.Blackhawk.com www.thebeltman.net www.Galcogunleather.com .

kadima
May 13, 2011, 03:00 AM
Best of them all is a Sam Browne. But, unfortunately if you wear one and you aren't in uniform it makes you look like an Illinois Nazi (cfr "The Blues Brothers")...

K.

kcs
May 13, 2011, 09:10 AM
Since most, or many of them are "double" belts, isn't that unnecessary for a IWB. ? I could see it with a holster worn on the hip. Seems to me those would be stiffer and somewhat uncomfortable. I don't have one and have been wearing my Sparks IWB with a Kahr MK40 comfortably, and with no problems, in an ordinary 1 1/2" work belt

A leather belt made from two straps (double belt) will not stretch as much over time as a belt made from one thick strap. A two strap (and one strap) belt can be made more comfortable if the buckle end of the strap is skived (thinned) therefore reducing the bulk where the belt folds over the buckle.

langenc
May 13, 2011, 11:50 AM
Most leather belts will sooner or later start 'curling' up esp w/ dunlap disease. They guy pictured above, probably wont have nearly so much of that problem.

hogcowboy
May 13, 2011, 12:10 PM
Most leather belts will sooner or later start 'curling' up esp w/ dunlap disease. They guy pictured above, probably wont have nearly so much of that problem.

Yup, I can attest to that. Got dunlaps disease and until I got a belt with a nylon insert, curling is exactly what happens. I have three good ones now so as to be able to rotate them and let one dry out while wearing the other. Look at 5.11 Tactical http://www.511tactical.com/ and the Beltman http://www.thebeltman.net/ . Both are good but the 5.11 is more for dress.

rayban
May 16, 2011, 06:51 AM
Here's a couple I've made recently...the double row of stitching adds to the stiffness of the already stiff 1-1/2" x 1/4 thick belt.
Good reviews so far from those who wear them daily.

I'm sure only time will tell, but I'm betting these are "dunlap-fold-over" proof.


http://i211.photobucket.com/albums/bb277/RGleather/Misc133.jpg

http://i211.photobucket.com/albums/bb277/RGleather/Misc142.jpg

scsov509
May 16, 2011, 11:09 AM
The three things I've noticed the most from a good gubelt are 1) The extra stiffness pulls the butt in a lot closer to the body regardless of what holster/gun I'm carrying, 2) The extra stiffness keeps the belt from shifting a lot, particularly on the draw, and 3) The double layer construction of a good leather gunbelt keeps them from stretching as much as belts I used prior. I was skeptical when I bought my first gunbelt, but am now glad I bit the bullet and made the investment. :cool:

Mike40-11
May 16, 2011, 08:51 PM
Those look very good rayban!

I finally broke down and bought a heavy duty gunbelt about 6 months ago. World of difference with a 1911 IWB.

ritepath
May 16, 2011, 09:31 PM
http://www.amazon.com/Columbia-Mens-40mm-Leather-Brown/dp/B001FOR26A/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1305599278&sr=8-3

Here's the best belt I've found for the money...I bought one, then two more for spares. You never know when somethings gonna be discontinued.