By Jason Hallmark, Austin Police Marksmanship Unit
One of the most important things to consider for daily concealed carry is the holster you select. The holster should give you some level of retention, comfort, and ease of access. I have carried a gun for the last 7 years on my person and have tried multiple holsters from multiple companies.
The first gun I carried was a rather large Sig P220 in a slip style inside the waistband (IWB) holster. I did not like the setup as it was bulky, had no retention and the holster was uncomfortable. I tried an outside the waistband (OWB) belt holster for it next. The belt holster I used was much more comfortable and secure, but it was hard to conceal. During this time I attended the Police Academy and spent a good deal of time learning about retention and realized that a concealed holster needed to be comfortable. Once I exited the Police Academy, I bought a J-Frame and a S&W M&P40 Compact. I carried one of those two smaller guns in either a pocket holster, or some version of a slip in style IWB for a year and a half until I came across the Comp-Tac website.
I had found myself looking for a more secure, comfortable, flexible holster that would conceal easy. I needed something that I could wear for 10 hours without discomfort and that I could use with multiple pistols. To this point, I had carried often, but would stop carrying my gun after several hours due to discomfort. Also, the simple cheap holsters I used really did not secure the gun properly and were not as easy to get to. My belt holsters were much better for security, but they required a full jacket to conceal.
Comp-Tac offers a variety of holsters for just about any use you can think of from competition to concealed carry. They offer a full line of weapon holsters and accessories such as spare magazine holders and even duty gear.
In my quest for comfort, I found the Comp-Tac Minotaur MTAC Holster. I bought one in chestnut for my M&P pistol and ordered the “slide” version with 1.5” belt clips. I have used this holster now for four years and can tell you I am very happy with it. The “slide” version will allow you to fit the families of pistols you have into the same holster. For example, I usually carry a M&P40 Compact, but this holster will fit the compact and full size pistols into the same holster. I have carried both sizes in mine and all fit the same with little difference between them and how they carry in this holster. The full sized grip does ride on my skin just a slight amount more than the compact however, if I wear an undershirt it makes no difference.
The MTAC is made of leather back with a Kydex half shell to hold the pistol. The Kydex is individually molded to each weapon, and each holster is fitted to each gun when made. The clips offer several mounting holes and can be set to allow a cant, and depth of use on your belt. With the holster setup with a forward cant, the draw from deep concealment is a breeze, and consistent for me. The Kydex holds the gun into place and provides level 1 retention.
I tend to travel a lot, and spend days where I may carry for 10+ hours at a time without break. I have found that this holster is comfortable especially if your gun’s grip is smooth and not against your skin. The leather portion of the holster sits against the skin, and spreads out the weight of the gun, which makes carrying even a full size gun no issue while staying comfortable. The clips are interchangeable with different sizes and colors, and are easy to swap. The Kydex shell can be swapped onto the leather back to facilitate the use of different guns. Basically, this holster is super easy to make a jack of all trades daily carry holster. You can get spare Kydex bodies to carry multiple guns which are relatively inexpensive.
In the four years that I have used this product, not once have I had to treat the leather, replace a broken clip/hardware, or have any issues with the Kydex. I have had to tighten the hardware as they will come loose over time, but this is more of a maintenance issue. When I originally ordered the holster, I mistakenly ordered the wrong model, and Comp-Tac replaced it without hassle for the correct model. The folks I have spoken to at Comp-Tac have been extremely helpful and their website is super easy to navigate. The Comp-Tac MTAC is listed on their website for $90.00 and the spare bodies cost around $38.00. Standard clips cost $8.50 and the V-Clips cost $8.50.
In conclusion, if you are looking for a comfortable, high quality, versatile concealed carry holster I would highly recommend the Comp-Tac MTAC. Its superb quality and comfort make it a top choice for a holster that you can trust your life with.
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