A Good Gun Belt Will Significantly Improve Your Carry Experience.
If you already own a belt to wear with your gun holster, you might be asking yourself why you should bother purchasing
a strong handgun belt.
That is a understandable question. Why make another purchase when you already own something that should do the same job as a specialized gun belt?
A belt is a belt right? … Wrong
Gun Belts Are Specifically Designed To Support The Weight of a Handgun
A belt designed specifically for supporting a holster and firearm is leaps and bounds better than that old leather belt you have had for years. There are several different reasons for this and all are important factors in the decision to buy a gun belt over a normal belt for carrying.
The basic belt from your favorite department store will typically be one layer of leather with cheap stitching materials. While that doesn’t mean that they aren’t good for keeping your pants up, it does mean that they aren’t ideal for a holster and handgun. In other words, they stretch. Stretching in a normal belt is unavoidable, but gun belts take steps to limit and eliminate stretching as much as possible.
Good Gun Belts don’t Stretch or Twist
Now you might be wondering why stretching in a belt used for your holster is a bad thing. You’ll just use the next hole in the belt and be fine right? Not so fast. One of the most important things in drawing your handgun, especially in a stressful situation, is muscle memory. That means that having your holster reliably stay exactly where you are most comfortable wearing it is of vital importance. A stretching belt will allow shifting in your point of carry and that can be all the difference in a time of need.
A good gun belt will hold your holster and handgun exactly where you want it and keep it there. Any solid structure starts off with a solid foundation and the gun belt is the foundation of your personal security carry system. Not only will a good gun belt make your handgun training and practice more effective in the long run, but it will also serve to give you a rock solid point of carry for the lifespan of the belt.
Speaking of lifespans, a good leather gun belt will also far outlast any ordinary department store belt. This increase in durability and lifespan can be attributed to several things including the superior craftsmanship and materials, but also the addition of several features that no department store belt has. The most important of those additional features is the presence of an internal belt stiffener. A good gun belt will have an internal stiffener that dramatically increases the strength of the belt.
It is also important to note that an internal stiffener not only increases the horizontal strength of the belt, but also the vertical strength. This is of importance because the vertical strength of the belt is what supports the holster and handgun. While vertical strength in an ordinary belt is very low (if you’ve ever had to hitch up your pants then you know what I’m talking about) a gun belt’s vertical strength with something like a stainless spring steel internal stiffener is very high.
Reliable Gun Belts Are Built To Last
If you used an ordinary department store belt as a gun belt, the lifespan of that belt would be a couple of months at the most. However,
a good leather gun belt with an internal stiffener, double stitching, and quality materials and craftsmanship will have no problem lasting for 10+ years.
Let’s talk a little about price now. Yes, department store belts are cheaper and may seem like the more appealing choice when you consider the price of a handgun, holster, ammo, and other necessary items. However, because of their durability and strength issues, you would actually wind up paying more over the course of a year in department store belts because of their constant need to be replaced than you would for a high-quality gun belt. Yes, the cost of a good gun belt is all upfront whereas the department store belts would be spread over an entire year, however all of the benefits of a good gun belt far outweigh any negative connotation associated with the entry price.
The one area where gun belts might not perform as well as a department store belt is in the area of comfort. A more flexible belt is inherently more comfortable than a stiffer belt. However, the comfort topic is a two-sided coin. Where a leather gun belt may be slightly less comfortable around the waist, it will be significantly more comfortable at your point of carry due to its ability to properly support the weight of your firearm and holster.
The bottom line when it comes to comparing department store belts to proper gun belts when the task is to comfortably and securely carry a holster and firearm is that there simply is no comparison. Using the right tool for the right job is always the best way to complete a task and department store gun belts were not designed for carry. A good gun belt will not only provide you with superior performance, but it will also last a heck of a lot longer than any ordinary belt ever could hope to.
About The Author
Brian Belko is a freelance writer and blogger. His primary areas of focus include the outdoors and shooting sports. In addition to his freelance work, Brian also writes for Wide Open Spaces and is on the Pro Staff at Military Hunting and Fishing. When he isn’t busy writing, Brian enjoys fishing farm ponds for bass and hitting the spring woods during turkey season.