View Full Version : Blade-Tech: general questions; also crazy shipping charges
February 6, 2001, 10:30 AM
It looks like Blade-Tech has a new web site. Everything looks good, except that they now show some exorbitant shipping and handling charges. I'm guessing that the shipping charge - $20 - is an error, and I'm going to try to confirm that today. However, there's also a $5 handling charge. To me $5 for shipping and handling would be reasonable, but $5 + actual shipping seems a bit excessive.
That said, it looks like Blade-Tech is still the best place to find kydex for my Sig P239. I'm looking at an IWB, but I'm not sure whether loops or the j-hooks are a better idea. The biggest difference (from what I can tell) is that the loops are adjustable for cant, but the j-hooks aren't.
Are j-hooks really that much less noticeable than loops? I would think that having a small about of the hook visable would actually attact more attention, since it's not something people usually see. ("What's that on the *bottom* of your belt?") I would think they would tend to look twice. Also, it looks like the j-hooks can't span a belt loop. What are the other advantages of j-hooks over loops, or vice-versa?
I had also considered the UCH for concealing at work (dress casual), but the height of the part that covers the outside of the belt means that anyone could tell that I had something attached. (At least when I'm wearing brown belts.) Is the "tuckable" feature that much more effective than just tucking around one of the regular IWBs? Is the UCH as stable as the loops or j-hooks, and how much thinner than the regular IWB is it?
With all the knowledge floating around TFL, I'm hoping someone can help me with their opinions.
February 6, 2001, 08:24 PM
Talked with them today. The shipping charges are just an error. They will continue to ship with normal three day delivery. Average charges should be $8-$9.
Now, any thoughts on the Blade-tech holsters?
February 6, 2001, 08:56 PM
$8 to $9 shipping PLUS the $5 handling charge?
What a lot of people don't realize is that for many companies shipping & handling does nothing but add pure profit.
That's why I like gunshows.
February 7, 2001, 08:52 AM
Whoops. I wasn't clear. I think it was more like $2-3 for handling and then the $5-6 shipping charge. That would make the total S&H charge about $8-9. This seems pretty reasonable to me.
I agree that there are some companies that charge exorbitant S&H fees just to make some extra profit. However, there are also a lot that only charge the actual shipping costs plus some sort of average handling cost. I don't know exactly what "handling" is supposed to cover, but when I started thinking about it, I came up with things such as the cost of the boxes, labels, tape, gas to get to the post office, etc. Some of that would be too hard to calculate on an individual bases, so the companies probably just look at the average monthly cost and divide it by the expected number of orders.
Of course, if I'm not paying S&H on mail order, I'm probably paying tax on the purchase at a gun show (not to mention the entry fee for the show). As long as the S&H is reasonable, I think the extra costs are pretty equivalent.
February 7, 2001, 09:30 AM
I worked out it cost more to visit the dealer and collect than to get him to post it to me.
It's also a trust thing.
I trust him to have my full order and ship it before he charges my account.
The good thing is that he's part of a small business so there's not a lot to go wrong. If I'm buying anything expensive, I like to go there and audition it/demo it/try before I buy.
Many companies that offer free shipping and put all their prices just that little bit higher...
Some companies offer rock bottom prices but have dreadful customer service.
I don't mind paying a bit extra overall for good customer service - especially online.
Swings and roundabouts!
February 9, 2001, 03:51 AM
I carry my G19 in a Blade-Tech IWB with j-hooks. The hooks, as far as I know, aren't meant to make the holster less noticeable, they just allow you to put it on and take it off without having to undo your belt. This is a major advantage for people who have to go into gun-free zones on a regular basis, as I do. I really appreciate this feature.
Depending on the width of your belt loops, the hooks will fit on either side. I wear mine this way. It helps to stabilize the holster as far as rocking back and forth, and it also lends support: since the j-hooks go under the belt, the holster is actually riding on the top of your pants, not the belt.
I'm not sure if BT makes j-hooks to match the various cant options of their holsters. My IWB has an FBI cant, and originally had loops, but I switched them out with the hooks from a straight-drop Steyr holster that my dealer had. It turns out that the forward hook sticks out a bit forward of the holster itself, and pulls my belt away from the waistband of my pants. This isn't really a big deal for me, since I always cover with an generous untucked shirt, at the very least, but if you're restricted in what you can wear, it might be an issue for you.
I have no real experience with the UCH, but I watched a guy at the shop trying to decide if he wanted one. He wore it around the store for about an hour.:) It seemed like his shirt didn't want to stay tucked, and re-tucking without exposing his gun was tricky. Might be a dicey thing to pull off in an office enviroment. I don't see how a looped or hooked IWB could have a shirt tucked over it without looking very un-natural. Actually, I don't think it would work at all, but I can't say I've tried it. YMMV
I'm generally pleased with the holster.
February 5, 2002, 03:17 AM
The guys at Blade-Tech just made me one for my new Taurus Snubbie 44spl last week. I love it. I just happen to work about a mile from their factory, which saves on the shipping charges;) They were real nice to work with. They did not have a holster for my pistol but were more than happy to make two from scratch. They made a regular IWB and a UCH because I couldn't make up my mind. I liked the UCH much better. I donot have a problem with my shirt comming un-tucked. however, I never wear it without a vest or jacket. This is my first conceliable holster and I'm still getting used to carrying it. So far it's been great.
They knocked about $20.00 off the price and threw in a speeloader holder for free, Cant beat that kind of customer service.
February 7, 2002, 12:21 PM
A couple of years ago I e-mailed Bladetech to complain about shipping charges, which were three times the cost of the shim I needed. The next morning I got two emails, one from the the CEO and one from the Sales Mgr. They said I had a good point, and would be shipping the shim overnight at their expense (the shim was free as well). I was very impressed and will continue to do business with them whenever possible. I don't think BT's shipping charges are out of line with the other companies I've ordered from lately - they're all too high.
February 8, 2002, 09:21 PM
Takes a modicum of talant to pick an order, pack and ship it.....without making mistakes.
Talant costs money. you gonna pay it from the catalog price or from handling fees. Either way, you pay.
Those that tack on exhorbitant fees for above should rot.
February 11, 2002, 12:58 AM
DavidB, I have the UCH for my P239. First of all, the belt loop actually wraps completely around the belt (at least on mine) which I believe is different from the picture on their site. Second, I can't imagine tucking a dress shirt over the P239 and actually concealing it. It seems like there would be a large bump on my hip making me look sort of "lopsided." Plus, my shirt sometimes comes untucked anyway, so I would be really self-conscious. In other words, I don't tuck, I use a cover garment. For others, tucking might work.
Otherwise, I like the UCH, but I think the standard J-hook IWB model would be just as good. I don't see the point of loops in Kydex, which seems to be needless copying of leather holster designs. Leather is meant to flex, Kydex is meant to be stiff.
February 12, 2002, 11:17 PM
Wow, an old thread revived. I just wanted to point out that this original thread was from February of last year. The high shipping charges were an error on their web site, which they fixed.
Just for the record, I did end up with the IWB w/ J-hooks and have been very happy with it. I was even successful with tucking in around the gun in dress casual environments (fold hem up as it passes over holser/gun to prevent extra meterial from dangling down). No one ever noticed.
February 15, 2002, 05:31 PM
Ever think of trying a belly band? They can get hot though. -UR.
February 19, 2002, 03:26 PM
Well, since this thread has re-surfaced, why not post on it... :)
I did a little experimenting some time ago. Tucked a shirt on top of my FBI-cant IWB holster and Walther P-99. You know, as far as I could tell the gun disappeared pretty completely... (Then again I wear only black clothes. Those who prefer colors might have a problem (that is, with concealment as well ;) :p :D ).) So from that little experiment, I conclude a "tuckable" holster could indeed work. The draw stroke would of course be slower than with a regular holster, but concealment-wise it could work. (Of course, with a normal IWB holster the shirt wouldn't remain tucked for very long. Plus the belt loop remains visible. Like I said, it was just a test.)
However, when talking about the UCH, doesn't the belt loop remain visible? Could be that people (I'm thinking of a working / school environment where you spend >8 hours per day, 5 days per week with the same people) would notice that and start to wonder just what it is?
February 20, 2002, 08:01 PM
I use belt loops on my Blade-Tech IWB holster. I like they adjust for belts 1.25", 1.5" and 1.75".
I tried the J-Hooks. Don't work on my body (slim). Holster was not secure and would move around and slide down.
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