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Discussion Starter #1
What are the advantages of Kydex or leather holsters?



To me, it seems that a leather holster would be snug/tight at first, break-in well, and then get sloppy with old age. I really have no idea what to get, and I am not good at buying things that I cannot test-fit.



PS Does anyone make M&P holsters with a lock? What does everyone think about those designs?
 

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Holsters are a personal thing, kinda like underwear or socks. Personally, I prefer good leather. It tends to conform to you. With kydex, you have to conform to the holster 'cause it doesn't flex very easily. Leather looks better IMHO, and will last for quite a while if you spend the money on good leather and take care of it. Kydex is lower maintenance, more resistant to chemicals and oils, and is very durable. The best thing to do would be to find another shooter in your area that has a couple of different holsters you can try on the range.



Joe
 

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I'll throw my 2 cents in. I prefer kydex and I'm partial to the comp-tac brand. I've only got one leather holster and all the rest are kydex. I've been carrying my ccw in the same comp-tac holster for the last 9 years straight nearly every day with no issues at all.



When it came time to choose my first holster 9 years ago my local range/shop owner steered me to the comp-tacs and said the days of carrying weapons in dead animal hide are over. He laughed with that remark and said there's nothing wrong with leather but the right kydex holster is superior.



He went further to add that his experience with leather was that they needed to be broken in requiring some time spent finessing, unholstering and reholstering, massaging, and sometimes a light sanding to fit your weapon which can take sometimes up to 100+/- holsterings to get it as smooth as kydex. And after all that trouble they would only last a few years for him before needing replacement.



His argument for the kydex was no break in necessary except for the initial tension screw adjustment to your preference and that he had been carrying his kydex holster for many years with no sign of it wearing out. Flash forward to today and he's been carrying the same holster for several years longer than I have mine, uses his holster far more frequently than the average person being an owner of a range/shop and as an instructor. He still sings the praises of kydex to anyone who wants to listen and if they're still not convinced leads them to his large selection of leather.



Now this is just opinion and by all means try both and decide for yourself because your the one who needs to be happy. The one leather holster I have is a Galco shoulder holster that I use so infrequently that it may never wear out. For the average person a leather holster may have just as long of a life as kydex but after having had to break in a leather I'm not likely to ever go through that again as it was an irritation to need to break it in compared to my kydex experience.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks bravada, that helps a lot. I saw the pics you posted in the other thread too.



I want something that will be mostly maintenance-free and last a long time. I think Kydex is what I should get. Leather would be nice, but I will be carrying this as a tool, not as a show-piece. If I wanted to be proud of the craftmanship of my gun, I would not have gotten an M&P.



I like the simplicity and ease of tucking a shirt in, with the Comp-tac "Shirt Tucker". However, only having one belt-support seems like it would not be as stable. I looked at the Infidel, but I think I am leaning towards the CTAC. It seems a little easier to tuck a shirt around it, when I want to do that. Any thoughts are welcome - on that holster or tucking a shirt, etc. The shops I visit carry almost no selection of holsters, so I cannot try anything out. I'd like to find a cheap holster and just use it for a week, while I order the CTAC.
 

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Comp-Tac Shirt Tucker

I had one of the Shirt Tucker holsters for a Kahr K9. The holster worked very well, but I would have preferred two belt loops. The K9 is a heavy beast for such a small gun, and I think a two loop rig would have been more stable and more comfortable. For absolutel ease of maintenance, Bravada is correct with the kydex. However, I have had very good luck with leather, and I stil prefer it. Just my 2 cents.



Easy Leather Break in Tip: Run target tape on the flats of the slide (two layers of tape) and the frame. Wrap the gun in a double layer of saran wrap (make sure it's tight). Soak the inside of the holster with Isopropyl alcohol, stick the gun in and let it sit for 48+ hrs. Spray the inside of the holster with silicon spray. The holster should work like a champ.



Joe
 

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Thanks for the Easy Leather Break in Tip Joe
, should I ever get another leather I'll try that out.



Having one belt support isn't horrible, the holster I've used for 9 years with my Glock 26 was one of comp-tac's first models the undercover, which they don't sell anymore, and has only one belt support. That said I just recently got the Infidel for my M&P and I'm using it in the ghurka configuration right now and I'm loving it, much more stable and my new favorite.



I have found that the shirt tucking can be hit or miss depending on you body weight and your shirts. You may be one of the lucky high metabolism slender build sort but I'm in the over weight category and found that I still needed to wear a vest with a shirt tucker as I still get a little printing under a shirt.



If you think you might be inclined to wear a vest/jacket combo depending on the season and depending on your budget I would recommend getting the Infidel holster and getting one of every mount option, Belt Loops, Belt Clip, Shirt Tucker Strut, Gurkha Strut, and C-T.A.C. Strut. This way you can experiment and find out which configuration works best for you.



If your opposed to wearing a vest/jacket for concealment and would prefer a shirt tucker the CTAC would be a great 2 point holster that can be shirt tucked and it would be the one I would choose for that concealment choice.
 
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