View Full Version : In the waistband or on the belt?

Scott Evans
December 27, 1998, 05:11 PM
Do you lose any performance by using an IWB holster as opposed to an on the belt (belt slide) holster? Of the two which do you prefer and why?

Dakota Law Dog
December 27, 1998, 06:10 PM
I don';t like IWB holsters because I hate the feel of it, and my back hurts.

December 27, 1998, 06:15 PM
I like IWB's, mostly for the concealment. I am comfortable with one, I believe because I am long waisted, and the rig does not poke my butt when seated. I use a Mitch Rosen ARG.

On the belt works very well also, and I find my first shot breaks are about 1/4 to 1/2 second faster from open carry. Draw from concealed I find no difference btwn IWB and Belt carry.

Freedom is not Free

Rob Pincus
December 27, 1998, 06:19 PM
I like the concealability of IWB and choose it often. But it definitely cuts a couple tenths of a second of the draw from a good belt holster.


Rosco Benson
December 27, 1998, 06:23 PM
If we compare properly designed IWB holsters against properly designed concealment belt rigs, there is little speed difference. If both are designed to hold the butt tightly against the body and allow a full firing grip upon initial hand contact, their speed will be equivalent. With most IWB's, the shirt-tail frequently starts to interfere with reholstering after several presentations have been made. While this may be a nuisance during a shooting class, it is of no consequence on the street...where, if needed at all, you'll make ONE draw.

Some makers try to minimize the "shirt-tail interference" problem of IWB's by putting a larger "shirt guard" behind the upper portion
of the pistol. These generally interfere with getting a good firing grip upon initial hand contact and I do not like them.


December 27, 1998, 06:51 PM

I dont wear IWB rigs, so my belt has broken into the buckle on a certain hole, I dont feel like getting a new belt to acomidate the extra width, also I would have to get looser pants.

However, I do like IWB for concealment, which is why I screwed around with that IWBSOB deal which works great. I don have to loosen anything for that one.

so my opinion is, when dealing with Self Defence, dress for success.


Mouse Assassins inc.

Clay Whitehead
December 27, 1998, 08:02 PM
When carrying concealed, I always use an IWB holster. I get the same type for any pistol or revolver I wish to carry so that location and presentation is the same.

I currently use the nylon holster and belt marketed by Magnum Softwear. The material is the same as used in diving gear. The holster retains shape after the draw so reholstering is the same as a reinforced leather holster. You can throw the holster in the washer and dryer when the lint and dust get to be a problem.

Mark THG
December 27, 1998, 08:04 PM
When properly designed I don't beleive that there is a difference in the draw speed with either method. Both are USUALLY strong side carry just one allows you to get the gun a little closer to the body and hide the barrel easier. If a belt mount holster is designed correctly it will be only negligbly thicker than the gun and won't really make a difference in Concealment. remember heavier clothes and darker colors conceal better than lighter and brighter. .....Mark THG

www.customholsters.com (http://www.customholsters.com)
M/D ENTERPRISES Custom Concealment Holsters
[email protected]

December 28, 1998, 01:16 PM
It REALLY depends on your primary mission/duty and WHERE you are comfortable carrying the piece (on your person). I like the IWB's but I carry in front of the hip for extra concealability. I don't like the conventional position because the weapon prints (on me) when bending over or sitting down. I am skinny (6' 0", 158 lbs) so I prefer to carry in front of the hip. This also makes sweeping clothing out of the way easier. I don't prefer the belt slides because of the concealment. Many times the wind or brushing up against something will expose the weapon. Flannel shirts are bad for this. (You have to wear a shirt over the top of the pistol for in front, IWB. Also, if you get into a heavy pushing, shoving match or get knocked down, you'll tend to reflexively bend forward or go into a fetal type position further protecting/retaining the weapon (with in-front of hip carry).

January 6, 1999, 03:48 PM
I've used an IWB holster for a number of years (Colt Commander and now a Kimber LW Compact) and found it to be the best compromise between comfort and concealability. With 6-7 months of warm weather here in Atlanta, I've found that the IWB conceals a lot better than a similar belt holster under light clothers. Now if they'd only come up with a LW pocket .45.


January 8, 1999, 01:15 AM
I carried a Walther PPK in a homemade IWB holster for many years - sometimes even in uniform. (Even with the Ike jacket.) It must have concealed well - neither the American military nor the German police noticed it. Back then I had not heard of "IWB". I just improvised.

I've carried a Star PD in an Alessi IWB for more years than I dare discuss - long before CHL came to Texas. It must have concealed well, I wasn't arrested. The Alessi won't pass the "shake test" so I can't recommend it for those who "tussle".

My next IWB will have two separate, changeable belt loops (with Chicago screws) to fit belts of various widths.

I tried several "on the belt" configurations and for my rotund shape they didn't work. Even the fine holster by "Roy Baker the Pancake Maker" stuck out too far for me, especially when I twisted to the left or stooped to pick up something.

On the other hand, wearing a winter jacket (ski jacket/field jacket) I have concealed a S&W N-frame .357 with a six inch barrel by using a belt slide and putting the muzzle in my side jeans pocket. This "make do" wasn't neat or confidence-inspiring, but I needed a handgun with me and that was all I had at hand. Believe it or not, I could still sit comfortably and draw that ole Highway Patrolman - even while driving a car.

For a while I carried a Charter Arms Bulldog .44 Special in the elastic portion of my backbrace. Wore shirts I didn't like so if I had to sacrifice the shirt buttons or shirt it wouldn't matter.

Once I carried a shotgun on a cord (over my shoulder, tied to the trigger guard) under a raincoat. But that's outside the "waistband or belt" topic.

I have been compelled by circumstances to improvise so many times, I deeply appreciate TFL. In fifty years, I have never met so many folks who know so much and are willing to discuss it all. You talk - I listen and learn. :)

Rob Pincus
January 8, 1999, 01:30 AM
Cord in the trigger guard? Hopefully, you test fired that first to make sure that the cord couldn't keep the trigger from moving back far enough to fire.
Next time a tight loop around the stock in front of the grip might be better advised.

The make good leather rigs for NFA shotguns carried in a similar manner.

I used to be a frequent practitioner of imporvised carry methods. honestly, who on this list hasn't left the house with a pistol tucked into your jeans?


[This message has been edited by Rob (edited 01-08-99).]

Rob Pincus
January 8, 1999, 01:32 AM
It's been one of those nights....

[This message has been edited by Rob (edited 01-08-99).]

Rob Pincus
January 8, 1999, 01:32 AM
sorry, double tap.

[This message has been edited by Rob (edited 01-08-99).]