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Old March 20, 2014, 12:15 PM   #1
Join Date: November 14, 2007
Location: Roseville, CA
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"Best" paddle holster?

I am in the market for a paddle holster and have read that many of the ones available have flimsy paddles and as such are marginally suitable for concealed carry. Any experience with "made in the USA" paddles? What say you? thanks...

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Old March 20, 2014, 05:31 PM   #2
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If you haven't tried a paddle holster, I suggest you try before you buy. Personally I think they are better in theory than practice and don't conceal as well as an OWB holster. If you want something that you can remove easily, there are holsters that use leather loops and snap on your belt.

If you must have a paddle, I would look at Galco.
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Old March 20, 2014, 07:51 PM   #3
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Have you looked at Comptac? I just ordered one for my beretta.
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Old March 20, 2014, 10:23 PM   #4
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In my opinion paddle holsters are not the best option for carrying concealed owb. Paddle holsters tend to not keep the gun snug to your body. There are lots of good kydex options and leather options out there for owb carry. are you looking at kydex options mainly or are you open to hybrid and leather too?
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Old March 21, 2014, 01:23 AM   #5
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I pretty much only use my paddle holster for house carry (as previously stated, they are COMPLETELY unsuited for CC), but I've been quite happy with my Fobus. Its very comfortable to wear (even with full size weapon like my XD 4"), sturdy, stays in place, is relatively easy to remove, and its very easy to draw from. Its also fairly inexpensive as long as you shop online ($20-$25). I do prefer the one-piece holster body on the Evolution series over the riveted two-piece standard models, but either will do just fine. Anyway, that's my 2ยข FWIW: YMMV.
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Old March 22, 2014, 05:22 PM   #6
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I have a couple of safariland holsters for concealed carry. they are great. all holsters require a good belt and unless you are carrying a mouse gun in your pocket all weapons will "show" at some point. I have carried for 20+ years ....maybe I am used to the occasional odd look. I also have 2 galcos that work well.

one more edit: I wear a coat and tie and have my jackets tailored for carry. makes a HUGE difference. for more casual wear I also visually check guys wearing oversized shirts...its a dead giveaway!

I find all of the IWB holsters uncomfortable and haves spent the money on the "good" ones. fobus paddles are marginal at best.

I also like the Milt Sparks sharkskin thru the belt holsters. I have had one for 15 years and it still looks and holds great.

my experience is you have to spend good money on both the belts and the holsters.
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Last edited by boondocker385; March 22, 2014 at 05:29 PM.
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Old March 23, 2014, 02:44 AM   #7
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(as previously stated, they are COMPLETELY unsuited for CC),
I didn't see where that was previously stated, but I do disagree. CC-ing is a very personal thing where one can adapt any number of options of holsters and firearms to fit whatever their styles, likes & dislikes, and such are. The COMPLETELY unsuited part just trips me up. I've CC'd with paddle holsters pretty much exclusively since '97 or so. What I don't do is buy one holster based on innerweb jabber and call it good. For whatever firearm I choose to carry, I often as not will try a number of holsters before I settle on one that I like the best.

A couple of years ago, someone on here made a very wise annalogy- "Go ahead and buy a $20 helmet if you think you have a $20 head." Apparently the guy had a friend who was into motorscooters. But it makes a good point- don't ALWAYS expect perfect results from lowest dollar purchases. I've been very happy with the Galco, Safariland, and an El Paso Saddlry holster that was convert to a paddle holster by a local saddle shop.
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Old March 24, 2014, 08:57 PM   #8
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I have a 5.11 tactical thumbdrive holster (made for 5.11 tactical by bladetech), it comes with a belt attachment (which I use daily on my duty belt for work) and a paddle attachment.

I LOVE the holster on both the belt attachment AND the paddle attachment. I have tried other paddle holsters in the past (Fobus, Galco ad some others), and when I drew the gun, I also drew the holster out of my waistband. Not so with the 5.11/Bladetech. The paddle and holster stay put, exactly where they're supposed to be. The paddle attachment has little "teeth" that seem to grab the bottom of my belt (and they are adjustable for different width belts) and keep the holster in place. I've never worn the paddle without a belt, because I NEVER go without a belt, so I don't know how well it would work without a belt.

I will say, however, that most paddle holsters I've tried, including the 5.11, make the gun stick way out from my body, thus limiting their usefulness for concealed carry for me.

I prefer an IWB holster for concealed carry, but I love the paddle attachment on the 5.11 thumbdrive for range use, field use when knocking around in the woods and any situation where concealment is not a consideration and I may want the option of easily removing the holster.

I also think the 5.11 is a good value at around $55-60 with belt and paddle attachments. It is one of the most secure holsters I've ever used and the draw from it is very smooth and natural.

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Old March 26, 2014, 08:33 PM   #9
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The serpa is a good paddle holster for the money. Nothing crazy but very effective. As others have stated, a little difficult to CC but extremely comfortable and well built.
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Old March 26, 2014, 08:52 PM   #10
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I have a Serpa for G21 and it does stick out from body a ways. I do like the holster and wear it in woods so concealment isnt an issue. Its is well made and retention is excellent
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Old March 28, 2014, 10:04 PM   #11
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G-Code, without a doubt....
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Old April 8, 2014, 10:08 PM   #12
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The Gould & Goodrich one is fantastic, in the "Gold Line" - it's just called the "Paddle Holster".

Well, I take that back - it used to be quality, but the picture here shows a different, and much cheesier-looking, one than the one I have:

So I dunno.
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Old April 9, 2014, 02:25 AM   #13
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Serpa. safariland.
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Old April 9, 2014, 09:37 AM   #14
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unless you are carrying a mouse gun in your pocket all weapons will "show" at some point
I don't think so. I mean, I guess, sure at SOME point if you work at it, you can print a concealed pistol. By the same token, with less work, you can not print.

I've got a Wilderness Belt, and a Kramer IWB rig I usually wear. I've stood in the bathroom and all but done jumping jacks to see what prints and what doesn't. With a tucked in undershirt, I can wear an untucked T shirt one size up and not print anything recognizable. I've even worn a dark Nike Dri-Fit shirt from the NFL shop and not printed unless I worked at it. I had to bend over at the waist, and twist. And this is carrying a full size 1911.

Maybe a double stack is different, I don't know. Looking at my reflection, I can see a crease made by the bottom of the magazine, but that's about it. And I only know it's the bottom of the magazine because I'm wearing the pistol, know it's there, and know exactly where it is to know what is making that crease. When I put on another layer for a cover garment, even that all but disappears.

Strangely, I'm far more cognizant of another aspect giving me away. Especially when I'm sitting, I hear every creak that leather holster makes. But again, because I'm - for lack of a better term- self-conscious of the fact that I'm carrying, I both notice the sound more, and know what it is.

By the same token, behaviorally I know I print. Hitching up your pants when you get out of the car. Tugging down your cover garment. My first holster was a Serpa Paddle/OWB combo. And even wearing a full hoodie, I could easily expose the bottom of the holster after sitting in a car, and picked up the habit of checking that hemline rather quickly.
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Old April 9, 2014, 09:50 AM   #15
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blackhawk serpa and safriland als are nice paddle retention holsters. i prefer the blackhawk. for IWB CC i found alien gear and love it. great pricing too.
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