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Old September 10, 2013, 08:55 PM   #1
Cosmodragoon
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Benefit of muzzle coverage in IWB holsters?

I was looking at tuckable holsters that use horsehide on one side and kydex on the other. While shopping around, I noticed that only a few companies offer full muzzle coverage for the gun and at an extra charge. It seems that open muzzles are the norm. So besides saving a few cents on the extra kydex, is there a reason for this?

An important and sometimes overlooked purpose for the holster is protecting the gun from you. The salty wetness of the human body is corrosive to metal and guns sure soak it up. So it seems like full coverage would be better. I'm looking forward to hearing your thoughts. Thanks.
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Old September 11, 2013, 03:27 AM   #2
bobandmikki
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Benefit of muzzle coverage in IWB holsters?

I prefer full muzzle coverage on the hybrid holsters since I think it reduces the chances of the gun being accidentally pushed up out of the holster when sitting down.
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Old September 11, 2013, 03:33 AM   #3
JimmyR
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I have one of these holsters, and I can lend some insight:

A leather/kydex holster is made to accomdate the wear on two different materials- leather and kydex. Most of these holsters are open so that the tension between the two pieces can be adjusted to maintain appropriate fit despite age and wear on the holster. If the holster provides a full cover, then as the leather continues to wear, you lose tension on your holster.
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Old September 11, 2013, 03:48 AM   #4
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Another factor is that some holsters are designed to allow families of guns, for instance G26/19/17. Since most shooters probably won't IWB the longest, but some might, the open end allows the possibility of the G17 without forcing unnecessary length on G26 or G19 carriers.

A downside, though, can quickly be found when holstering the weapon after shooting it for a while - some slides get uncomfortably warm.
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Old September 11, 2013, 01:16 PM   #5
loose_holster_dan
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protecting the gun from your skin oils.
protecting your clothes from gun powder residue.
protecting your skin from a hot, recently fired barrel.
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Old September 11, 2013, 07:37 PM   #6
dajowi
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I have some that fully cover the muzzle and some that don't. I prefer the muzzle to be fully covered when using a shoulder rig. A fully covered muzzle also helps prevent the front sight from being dinged up.
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Old September 12, 2013, 06:11 PM   #7
AK103K
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Quote:
An important and sometimes overlooked purpose for the holster is protecting the gun from you. The salty wetness of the human body is corrosive to metal and guns sure soak it up. So it seems like full coverage would be better.
If this is the case, you dont want a holster that has the leather part against your body. Ive never understood the construction of the leather/kydex holsters you see sold. They always seemed to be built backwards to me. Kydex aganist the body makes much more sense, and a totally kydex holster is even better yet.

I've carried IWB, pretty much exclusively, my whole life. Up until kydex arrived on the scene as a holster material, I suffered through multiple leather holsters with their associated rust issues for my guns and the irritation issue on my body. Kydex relieved all that, and stopped a lot of wasted money on new leather holsters every year.

As for the closed muzzle, I dont think the open muzzles are an issue at all, and really more of a positive than a negative. They dont trap the junk/dirt/dust, etc, that always gets in your holster, allows air flow through them as well. Makes them a lot easier to clean out too.
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Old September 12, 2013, 07:12 PM   #8
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Quote:
Kydex aganist the body makes much more sense, and a totally kydex holster is even better yet.
Better yet is a leather lined holster with a complete kydex shell like the Silent Thunder from Garrett Industries. Protects the gun from sweat and protects the finish from the extra wear from kydex. I have the Silent Thunder (tuckable) for one of my pistols and like it.

It's not as comfortable as leather holsters and that's a downside for full kydex holsters. I haven't had problems with rusting, etc. but that may be because I'm usually not carrying when I'm working outside.

As far as full muzzle coverage is concerned, I would think it would protect the barrel when it gets banged.
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Old September 12, 2013, 07:43 PM   #9
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I like for there to be an opening large enough for a shell casing to fall through. It's never happened to me but I've trained with a guy who had it happen so I ask my kydex makers to make the adjustment. It's probably totally unnessesary, but sometimes I run the same holster owb on a warbelt for comps and such.

Other than that, water drainage.

As others have mentioned, some holsters have full open muzzle to allow g26/19-17 and such, which I think is cool
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Old September 12, 2013, 10:14 PM   #10
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Quote:
AK103K wrote:
... you dont want a holster that has the leather part against your body. Ive never understood the construction of the leather/kydex holsters you see sold... Up until kydex arrived on the scene as a holster material, I suffered through multiple leather holsters with their associated rust issues for my guns and the irritation issue on my body.
Are you talking about the gun rusting inside the leather holster from accumulated moisture or metal parts on the holster rusting? On that note, is the irritation caused by the leather or by metal parts like rivets, snaps, brackets, eyelets, etc... on the leather? I ask because little metal bits can not only cause abrasion but allergic reactions in some people.

Last edited by Cosmodragoon; September 12, 2013 at 10:39 PM.
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Old September 13, 2013, 03:44 AM   #11
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I was referring to the gun rusting in the leather holster.

The irritation is caused by the leather, especially wet leather, rubbing against your bare skin. The leather actually rubs you raw. Chemicals used in the tanning process, can also add to the "burn".
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Old September 13, 2013, 05:38 AM   #12
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I think I'll just stick with carry OWB
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Old September 13, 2013, 05:38 PM   #13
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If OWB was as effective at hiding the gun, Id be right there with you. Unfortunately, its not.
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Old September 13, 2013, 05:46 PM   #14
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OWB is not typically as effective as concealability goes, but can be effective enough. Sometimes (such as when injuries that may be sensitive to imbalances IWB are incurred or flare up) the extra challenge in dressing to conceal OWB is worthwhile.
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Old September 13, 2013, 06:07 PM   #15
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AK103K, was this regular leather or horsehide? I've heard that horsehide is less water-permeable, so much so that they can't even dye it effectively. Most of the manufacturers recommend horsehide for those in warmer climates or those who are prone to sweating.

Either way, I'm not sure how much bare skin it will see. I carried a De Santis IWB for years. It was full cowhide leather, dyed black, and non-tuckable. I don't recall it rubbing up against my skin much due to boxers and, in most cases, undershirts. It saw enough sweat to take the sheen off some of the leather but everything was otherwise alright. The tuckable design with a kydex front means more leather surface area but that's why I am interested to try horsehide.
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Old September 13, 2013, 07:06 PM   #16
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The last couple of leather holsters I used for daily use were Galco Royal Guards, which are made of horsehide. I work and play outside, sweat like a pig, and they sucked sweat up like a sponge. In the summer, I actually used to rotate through the two holsters on a daily basis, trying with no success, to keep them somewhat dry.

Im not totally "leather free", I do use a Milt Sparks VMII on occasion, mostly in the winter when Im not working. It would never fly in the summer while I was working.

As far as skin exposure, I suppose a lot of that depends on your lifestyle and activity level. I constantly have to retuck my tee shirts during the day. Enough of the holster inevitably gets exposed to my skin due to it, and I cant always just stop and retuck my shirt and have to deal with it until I can.

Kydex isnt perfect and can be annoying at times too, but wet kydex usually just slides across your skin with little irritation. You also dont have the chemical issue with it. It does pretty much eliminate the rusting issue with your gun though.

Hey, I suppose the only real answer here is, its an ever ongoing experiment until you find what works best for you. I think thats the main reason we all have one of those holster boxes (EBay is a great place to recoup some of that money too, by the way) somewhere around the house. The only way to really know, is to fill the box.
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Old September 15, 2013, 06:52 AM   #17
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I make my own. Kydex and leather. Most leather holsters made from horsehide and cowhide is not graded for quality and that includes shoulder rigs. All leather will stretch with time. Buffalo hide seems to stretch the least. There's other more exotic materials but they're way over my budget.
The least stretchable part of the hide is the spine as you work down the belly there's a lot more stretch. Makes sense anyway. I carried IWB for years until lower back surgery then I had to switch to shoulder rigs. I bought 3 different ones they all had too many snaps and/or buttons, and buckles, and every one stretched and had to be readjusted. So I started making my own
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Old September 16, 2013, 01:15 AM   #18
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I dunno I've been carrying OWB for 10 years with a variety of different firearms and have had no problem whatsoever with effectively concealing.
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