I’ve always been a fan of hard holsters. Being able to quickly draw and re-holster my sidearm has been one of the biggest cool-factors in my gear, in my opinion. Mag pouches that are lined with kydex/polymers/etc are super cool high-speed gear bits, as they give the operator the ability to do away with noisy velcro lids, or bungee cord going over the mag that tends to get caught on stuff. When I look at military photos that feature strong-side profiles,I first try to figure out what holster the soldier(s) is carrying. Yeah… I’m kind of a mag pouch/holster junkie in that sense.
The following is a quick overview of some of the plastic stuff I clip onto my belt. I’ve been running a set up like this for a few months now, as I do have a very similar set up for my MEU(SOC) pistol.
I have a pair of Blade-Tech Revolution SMP Double Stack 9/40 Mag Pouches (left) bolted onto Large Tek-Loks, with a Blackhawk Industries CQC Serpa in matte black for P226 (Railed) (right) mounted on a Blackhawk Mod-U Lok Platform.
The advantage to a Serpa is that it is a Level 2 holster; Level 2 Retention means that there are two methods that the holster keeps the gun in itself – friction (via a single tension adjustment screw) and Active Retention (the BHI trigger guard locking system that requires the user to depress the button before drawing the sidearm from the holster).
Utilizing pure friction to retain its contents, the Blade-Tech Revolution SMP Mag Pouch uses two tension adjustment screws to allow the operator to adjust the pouch to give the best ratio of retention to draw speed. It does take a bit of time and fiddling to get things dialed in the first use or two. However, once properly adjusted to individual preference, the Blade-Tech series of pouches (and holsters) are lightening fast to operate, with a good deal of security-of-contents to boot.
Above is a picture showing off the belt attachment systems – The Tek Lok is slightly more versatile. Blade-Tech’s mounting hole pattern works with a wider variety of bolt on holsters: in addition to working with Blade-Tech holsters and mag pouches, the screw hole pattern actually will work fine with a Blackhawk Serpa. I like the Tek-Lok design as it is a very secure mounting solution that also offers adjustability for different belt widths with the removable bars that run parallel to one’s belt (more pictures and details below).
Pictured here is the back side of the mounts. The BHI Mod-U Lok is something I stumbled upon recently, and it looked like an interesting compliment to my pre-existing Blade-Tech pouches and holsters that were already mounted on Tek-Lok platforms for versatility with belt widths/ease of donning and doffing with my belt already being worn and sized properly to my waist for the day.
I’m really liking how comfortable the BHI Mod-U Lok is, due to the slight curvatures in the platform itself. The contour that follows your sides when mounted on a belt makes a huge difference when just walking around with the holster on your person, as the flat profile of the Blade-Tech Tek-Lok tends to cause a single pressure point on my hips. The lower, curved area of the platform is what really impressed me. With the Tek-Lok system, I did find that kneeling when pouches are mounted close to my thighs to be very uncomfortable, as the lower corners of the platform had a tendency to dig into my hip joint in certain positions. With the nice curve on the bottom of the Blackhawk Mod-U Lok, the mount just slides right into a more comfortable position without any unexpected pressure on my hip-joint-area.
Here you can clearly see the “bars” (for lack of a better term) that are adjustable for different belt widths. Both Blackhawk (right) and Blade-Tech (left) use this concept in their mount systems.
One thing I did notice about the BHI mount is that there is no safety lock to prevent the locking system from accidentally snapping itself loose, like there is on the Tek-Lok. On the Tek-Lok, the U-shaped piece of polymer that swivels around is used to lock onto the rear half of the clam shell, preventing accidental release in the event that the Tek-Lok mount is pinched in the spot that would normally release the lock. Mind you, the Blackhawk Mod-U Lok is a very tight snap-on fit, but I am honestly quite skeptical that it will stay this rigid for long.
As a final note, I would like to point out one advantage that I discovered about the Blackhawk Industries Mod-U Lok mounting platform: it has a spring loaded prong that creates tension on the belt. No more flopping around on belts that aren’t layers upon layers of nylon/Cordura, like the Tek-Loks tend to do. The prong is quite a simple design, but the tension that results from it definitely holds my Serpa in place on my belt line better, as compared to the Tek-Lok mount when I had one bolted to my holster.
Just a quick note as to where I got this stuff (with links):
The BHI Serpa and Blade-Tech Mag Pouches were purchased at Dave’s Tactical in New Westminster, BC; a local store, great place to shop around for real gear at great pricing, considering how the place is local and you don’t have to wait for shipping. The Blackhawk Mod-U Lok Platform was purchased online at LA Police Gear, in Valencia, CA, United States; I’ve dealt with LAPG on multiple occasions – decent pricing, quick to ship (when items aren’t on back-order), huge selection.