I have an Uncle Mike's which came with it free, however, I am looking for alternatives...
someone I know mentioned the Safariland type...??
Where can I find a good deal?
If it is for duty or concealment, check the December 2008 issue for Blue Line's review of the latest technology in high retention law enforcement holsters. It is not a comprehensive list; it is a head-to-head test of the best on the market. It includes duty holsters plus concealment holsters from the top two makers on the market.
This issue caused a bit of a stir - that's an understatement - and the sales department is still pisssed with me over it, but we actually got emails thanking us for the honesty of our head-to-head test.
Holsters tests are tricky; especially concealment holsters where officers can often select their own. Very few people would admit in a user review they made a mistake and fewer still - thankfully - get to use those holsters in the stress of a life-threatening situation. User reviews and sales figures are almost valueless in selecting a good holster. Also, very few users are going to buy ten different holsters, just so they can challenge the biggest guy they know to try to rip it off their belt in under 30 seconds.
In my mind, a good holster is not the one that works a million times in leisurely practice draws in the store or on the range; a good holster is the one that works that once when someone is trying to kill you.
Also, I haven't read the December 2008 issue of Blue Line, so I'm not quite sure what Dave has said with regards to this holster.
Safariland ALS 6365 Holster
It was a good choice on the part of CBSA.
The similar Safariland 6070 Raptor holster was rated "highly recommended." It is a true Level III, and it was designed to duplicate the draw of the older (and very popular in Canada) Safariland 070. This is easily the one I would recommend if an agency were to be transitioning from the 070.
In real-life practical situations, both holsters are equally about as fast and reliable. The additional retention level of the Raptor is not really a significant factor, as is explained in the article.
Both holsters are considered the best of current technology because they are easy to use, easy to train on, very secure and the sidearm can be reholstered almost instantly with one hand.
The Blackhawk SERPA was rated as "unacceptable" for reasons detailed in the article.
Blackhawk does make excellent holsters for airsoft guns.
The rotating top hood on both the 6070 and 6360 is called the "SLS" by Safariland. (The fixed "hood guard" over top of the rotating SLS is easily removable, by the way.)
The thumb button on the 6360 is called the "ALS." Both use the same rotating hood, but the Raptor does not have an ALS; it has TWO additional (different) releases. (Hence, the Level III designation.)
The optional "sentry" device bumps up a Level II to a Level III and a Level III to a Level IV.
I don't recommend the optional sentry unless you are in a very high risk environment. (Quite frankly, if one needs a Level IV, it is time to reconsider your career options anyway!)
In a sidebar article, I also discussed what the retention levels really mean, and why we shouldn't get so hung up on what is essentially marketing-speak. (There is no standardization in so-called retention levels, which is why I usually refer to these holsters as "high-retention" or "triple-retention" - but also understanding that holster retention is only one part of an entire continuum of defenses.)
Seriously though, PM sent to El Conejo and sunsetson.
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