iPad? iGun! iCarry In Plain Sight With The Galco iDefense

New for 2014, Galco takes the day planner concealed concept to the next level.

The Galco iDefense is a day planner type design that’s engineered to hold an iPad. It fits all iPads Generation I through IV, but obviously not the iPad Mini.

The Galco iDefense supports your iPad in a usable position while hiding a gun and spare magazine underneath. Image: Galco Gunleather.

The Galco iDefense supports your iPad in a usable position while hiding a gun and spare magazine underneath. Image: Galco Gunleather.

What I like about it is its split personality. Some day planner solutions are simply a big holster that looks like a day planner. You can’t open it up without exposing your gun. This one has a dedicated gun compartment accessible via a separate zipper. Outside of that is the iPad holder. And it doesn’t just hold the iPad. It also includes a support brace that will prop your iPad up at about a 45 degree angle. This allows you to use the iDefense while speaking at a podium, sitting at a table, or even while relaxing in a lounge chair. Should you require the services of your handgun, it’s easily available just underneath. This presents a really interesting carry option for those “exposed” speaking in front of groups.

A view of the dedicated gun and spare magazine compartment. Image: Galco Gunleather.

A view of the dedicated gun and spare magazine compartment. Image: Galco Gunleather.

The holster pocket features sewn-in elastic bands that hold a medium to full size handgun. As it’s a one-size option, the support bands aren’t large enough for a micro pocket gun like the Ruger LCP. But that wold defeat the purpose anyway. The big benefit, as I see it, is the ability to carry a full size gun in plain sight. There is also an elastic band intended to carry a spare magazine.

The Galco iDefense is available in brown or black.

This. Is. Cool.

 

Be sure to check out our book, The Insanely Practical Guide to Gun Holsters. It will teach you all the major methods of concealed carry and walk you through pros and cons over 100 different holster models. It’s available in print and Kindle format at Amazon:

Now available in print! The Insanely Practical Guide to Gun Holsters

Now available in print! The Insanely Practical Guide to Gun Holsters

Gun Holster Review: Blackhawk Day Planner Hides Your Gun In Plain Sight

The Blackhawk! Day Planner Holster is available in small and large sizes to accommodate your choice of carry gun. We’ve been testing the large model which has been able to handle all of our full size handguns like Beretta 92s, full size 1911s, full size Glocks, and more.

The Blackhawk! Day Planner Holster - a nifty way to hide your gun in plain sight.

The Blackhawk! Day Planner Holster – a nifty way to hide your gun in plain sight.

The case itself is dedicated to the gun and a spare magazine. There are no compartments for office supplies. This makes sense as you don’t want to be opening this case unless you really, really, need to.

From the outside, it's just an ordinary day planner.

From the outside, it’s just an ordinary day planner.

The day planner features a dual zipper design, so you can configure it to open from either end. Or, keep both zippers centered if you prefer. The two zipper design is important as it allows you to configure the unit specifically to your needs. You can decide on specific orientation of your gun in the case, and which side you want for primary access. Every time you open the day planner, your gun will be oriented in a consistent direction.

The case itself is made from 1000 denier CORDURA® nylon outer material, whatever that is. The important thing is that the material is sturdy and tough. This day planner is not going to wear out until long after the Housewives of Los Angeles stop pole dancing. It also features a form-fitting canvas strap across the spine. It’s just big enough to get your fingers through, but small enough that it doesn’t flop around and catch on things.

The gun is retained by an adjustable strap that attaches to the velcro backing. Did I say velcro? Sorry, I meant to say hook and loop. That’s what all the tactical folks call velcro these days. This strap is made from thick canvas-like material and is adjustable to fit different pistol widths. This band is wide enough to cover the trigger guard area of your pistol or revolver and hold it firmly in place. There is an adjustable elastic cord that can go around the grip or rear of the slide to keep your gun solidly tucked in to the band. A separate velcro-backed piece with an elastic loop is used to secure a spare magazine. Both components are velcro (hook and loop, right?) backed so you can place them independently wherever you like. Just place each in its desired location, test your placement and access with an unloaded gun, and you’re ready to go.

Insanely Practical Tips Guns and Shooting

Insanely Practical Tip

Do NOT leave this behind in the conference room! Staple the carry strap to your hand if you need help remembering!

If you’re the church going type, and it’s permitted in your locale, this makes a great Sunday go to meetin’ carry method as the day planner looks very much like a bible case. Just sayin’ you know?

More gun holster info in our book, The Insanely Practical Guide to Gun Holsters!

Now available in print! The Insanely Practical Guide to Gun Holsters

Now available in print! The Insanely Practical Guide to Gun Holsters

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A Brief History of Gun Holsters

Gun HolstersHolsters have been around longer than you might think – almost as long as Cher has been parading around wearing doilies. In fact, holsters actually pre-dated guns. Do you really think bands of wooly mammoth hunters carried spears and rocks in their hands? After all, they couldn’t invent important things like fire and Brown Sugar Cinnamon Pop Tarts with their hands all full of weapons.

While we don’t have the space to cover all of the many interesting and important developments in the history of holsters, we can touch on some of the highlights.

11th Century BC
Future King of Israel, David, popularizes the concept of holsters by toting around large round stones with which he kills big bullies. This earliest form of holster is known, from careful study and translation of ancient texts, to be called a ‘sack.’

1297
William Wallace, otherwise known as Braveheart, popularizes the SmartCarry holster design – then known as a sporran. Sporrans were, and continue to be, worn on most fashionable kilts. As guns were not yet invented, historians believe that Wallace carried spare breath mints and a copy of his film rights agreement in his sporran. Wallace’s aggressive attitude prompts officials to ban sporrans in New York City.

1770
Europeans discover that kangaroos were designed with natural inside-the-waistband carry holsters when James Cooks’ ship Endeavor runs aground off Queensland, Australia. Kangaroos are immediately banned in New York City.

1800
Western style pommel bags serve as carry devices for multiple large handguns. They quickly fall out of fashion when Clint Eastwood refers to them as ‘man purses.’

1805
Historians believe that French Emperor Napoleon Bonaparte invents a predecessor to the FlashBang Bra Holster, as evidenced by many portraits showing him fondling a derringer underneath his blouse.

1840’s
From careful frame-by-frame analysis of period documentaries like Blazing Saddles, historians have learned that belt holsters became fashionable for single shot pistols and early revolvers.

1966
Leather sixgun holsters become popular when a series of low budget spaghetti western films are produced like The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly. Early design ideas are scrapped when it is determined that spaghetti does not ride well in leather holsters. And it makes many holsters soggy.

1969
Richard Gallagher founds The Original Jackass Leather Company in Chicago, IL. When he discovers that few Jackasses carry guns, the company is renamed to Galco Gunleather and relocates to Phoenix, AZ. New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg immediately bans Jackasses from carrying concealed. And the state of Arizona.

1986
Man purses become fashionable, primarily in Europe. Otherwise known as man bags or murses, they are still just purses. Some men, concerned about their metro-masculine image, encouraged folks to call these bags ‘satchels’, but let’s face it – if it looks like a purse, and acts like a purse, it’s a purse. While seemingly a great concealed carry holster innovation, the fad rapidly lost popularity when European men realize that handguns are banned in most of their countries.

1993
Inspired, and scared probably scared witless, by his pack failing and dumping “a ton” of gear into the middle of an Iraqi minefield, Navy SEAL Mike Noell founds Blackhawk!

EDITORS NOTE: We do not recommend or condone dumping your gear into an enemy minefield. Always hurl your gear into enemy minefields from a safe distance. For example, from central Idaho.

One of Blackhawk!’s successes is the Serpa retention holster designed to secure a handgun against accidental release or removal by evil d00dz. In a launch publicity stunt, illusionist David Copperfield attempts to escape from a 23x scale Serpa Holster.

1995
The Kydex revolution begins when Blade-Tech founder Tim Wegner melts several toaster ovens in his kitchen in early attempts to make Kydex knife sheaths. Wegner’s wife gently and lovingly encourages him to move the budding business to the garage – where companies are normally started. When associates point out to Wegner that one shouldn’t bring knives to gun fights, the business begins to focus on Kydex holsters for guns.

2009
Addressing concerns that holsters can make one’s butt look big, Lisa Looper invents the Flashbang bra holster. Apparently it’s better for one’s, umm, chest to look big. Ok then, moving on…

 

We hope you have enjoyed this preview from our forthcoming book, My Gun Culture’s Insanely Practical Holster Book.

Our free Insanely Practical Guide PDF is available here. While it contains a fraction of the information that is covered in the full book, there’s plenty of useful stuff in there, and it’s free, so check it out.

Holster Review: Blackhawk Leather Speed Classic Holster

Blackhawk Leather Speed Classic J Frame Holster allows for fast and natural draw

Blackhawk Leather Speed Classic J Frame Holster allows for fast and natural draw

Sometimes the simplest things can amaze. The Blackhawk Leather Speed Classic holster amazes. Not for one specific reason, but because the sum total collection of details make this holster work. The Blackhawk Leather Speed Classic Revolver Holster demonstrates outstanding concealability, excellent retention, fast draw time, and surprising comfort.

Inspired by the famous Berns Martin design, the Blackhawk Speed Classic is intended for outside the waistband carry of a J-Frame snubnose revolver – like the Ruger LCR or many of the Smith & Wesson J-Frame models – exposed or internal hammer designs. In the mid 1930’s, Berns wanted a holster that would allow him to carry a revolver high on the hip in the Alaskan wilderness that offered excellent retention yet easy access. Soliciting some help with the leatherwork from his friend Martin, the beginning of the Speed Classic design was born.

There are two secrets to this holster.

Blackhawk Leather Speed Classic J Frame Holster split front

The split front design allows for strong retention with sacrifice of draw speed

First, it rides high on the hip. This aids both concealment and comfort. The combination of a short barrel gun with a high riding mount means you can easily conceal this rig with an un-tucked shirt. No long sport coats or vests required. If you are a professional photographer, feel free to wear the vest anyway – it will do a fine job of hiding your snubbie revolver.

Second, the revolver is retained by spring pressure on most of the cylinder and frame. A split front to the holster, bridged by an elastic strap, allows the revolver to be drawn simply by rocking it forward, at which point it slides right out of the holster. The motion couldn’t be more natural. This has quickly become our favorite way to carry a Ruger LCR .357. It’s instantly available, yet you almost forget its there.

The Blackhawk Leather Speed Classic is highly recommended. You can find one here: Blackhawk! Classic Leather Speed Holster J-Frame

Read about more carry styles and over 120 different gun holsters in The Insanely Practical Guide to Gun Holsters - available at Amazon.com! Learn more about our Insanely Practical Guides!

Insanely Practical Guide to Gun Holsters

Holster Review: Blackhawk Sportster Standard Concealment Holster

Blackhawk SERPA and Blackhawk Sportster Standard Gun Holsters

Almost identical to the Blackhawk Serpa (left), the Blackhawk Sportster Standard (right) is a great value.

Like the Blackhawk Serpa, the Blackhawk Standard Concealment holster comes with two mounting options – a belt loop system and a paddle. Both gun holsters are insanely configurable. Cant is adjustable in two positions forward and two positions backward in addition to the default straight drop. The belt mount can be sized to fit belts from zero to 2.25 inches. So, in theory, if you wanted to mount this holster on a string, you could, although we wouldn’t recommend it…

The paddle mount option features the same cant adjustments but also allows sizing to your specific belt. Even through the paddle option does not require a belt, it has adjustable pegs that are captured by the bottom of the belt – thereby improving stability immensely. This is the most solid paddle mount system we’ve tested. If you set it up right, it doesn’t move. It’s firmly anchored into position – like Rosie O’Donnel at the Dunkin’ Donuts counter. The paddle is also very large which noticeably increases comfort by distributing the weight across a large area of your hip.

Blackhawk Sportster Standard Belt and Paddle Mount

The Blackhawk Sportster Standard holster includes both belt and paddle mounts

The model we evaluated was for a full size 1911 and the kydex was molded perfectly. While not necessarily required, the holster has an adjustable retention screw that allows the user to set the strength of retention to preference.

With a street price of around $20 and sometimes less, depending on your gun model, this holster is a tremendous value.

You can find one here – Blackhawk! Sportster Standard Holster.

Read about more carry styles and over 120 different gun holsters in The Insanely Practical Guide to Gun Holsters - available at Amazon.com! Learn more about our Insanely Practical Guides!

Insanely Practical Guide to Gun Holsters

Rockin’ Video Preview: Galco Ankle Holsters

We’re doing an exhaustive torture test of three Galco ankle holster products:

Galco Ankle Glove

Galco Ankle Lite

Galco Ankle Glove Calf Strap

While that’s going on, we thought we’d post a quick video preview set to a hoppin’ Elvis theme song. This video will:

  • Prevent you from making a fool of yourself when you call Galco
  • Eliminate the need for you to read the enclosed instructions
  • Show you my sexy leg

More to follow in the written review. In the meantime, enjoy the video!

Galco Ankle Holster roundup

Read about more carry styles and over 120 different gun holsters in The Insanely Practical Guide to Gun Holsters - available at Amazon.com! Learn more about our Insanely Practical Guides!

Insanely Practical Guide to Gun Holsters

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