Let’s look through a few cartridges for my favorite kinds of handguns: revolvers. Revolvers .38 Special courtesy of contributor Malis via Wikimedia Commons. .38 Special Originally designed by Smith & Wesson, the .38 Special was the standard service cartridge used by many police departments in the United States from the 1920s to the early 1990s. As a centerfire round with manageable recoil, the .38 Special excels in versatility in uses for both target practice and concealed carry. I shoot .38 Special more than any other caliber, so it’s my preferred round, both at the range and in my CCW. .357 Magnum .357 Magnum courtesy of contributor Grombo via Wikimedia Commons. Equal in diameter, but more powerful than the .38 Special, the .357 Magnum is a slightly longer cartridge with more gun powder. Based on the same design as the .38 Special, the .357 Magnum packs more of a punch due to the increased powder load. While many view this cartridge as an excellent self-defense round, it requires more recoil management than most of the cartridges we’ve covered before. While there are both full-size and concealed carry guns for the .357 Magnum, the heavier the gun the easier it is to manage perceived recoil. A lighter-framed concealed carry gun in .357 Magnum may be more comfortable to carry, but is notably less enjoyable to shoot. .44 Magnum Photo © by Jeff Dean .44 Magnum Contrary to popular belief, the .44 Magnum made popular by the Clint Eastwood Dirty Harry movie series was not a popular choice among law enforcement personnel. Faster than the .357 Magnum due to it’s wider diameter (and greater powder count), heavier recoil and intense muzzle blast make the .44 Magnum poorly suited for much police use. Considered by some as an ideal caliber for sport and hunting, the .44 Magnum has been known to take down dangerous large game, such as hogs or alligators. .500 Magnum Image courtesy of contributor Mebonty via Wikimedia Commons. As a fifty-caliber centerfire cartridge, the .500 Magnum is considered the most powerful production handgun cartridge. Due to the amount of energy and intense recoil, this large cartridge is mainly used for hunting large game, from buffalo to bear, and beyond. Due to its size, penetration, and intense recoil, the .500 Magnum is a poor choice for self-defense or concealed carry purposes. The S&W Model 500 is a good example of a .500 Magnum caliber type gun. Final Thoughts With all the choices of caliber types, which is the best round to shoot? As with choosing the right gun, caliber selection is no different. The best caliber is the one you can shoot the most accurately. Even if that means shooting a smaller caliber, such as the .22LR, it’s wise to start out practicing with a round that can help you hone in on the fundamentals before moving on to a larger caliber. Find something you enjoy shooting, and you’ll be set. Featured image courtesy of contributor ATUStudio via istockphoto.com
Faxon Firearms has just released the STREAMLINE CARBON series of handguards for the AR-15. The STREAMLINE CARBON series of carbon fiber handguards melds extreme lightweight and functionality into a single rugged, easy-to-install M-LOK handguard. Mounted to a weapon, the shooter will see a dramatic increase in maneuverability and swing ability of their rifle compared to legacy metal options. The STEAMLINE CARBON fuses Faxon’s patent-pending mounting architecture and quality machining with Lancer Systems carbon-fiber know-how. The rails mount to the AR-15 using the common mil-spec AR-15 barrel nut, ensuring anyone with standard tools can mount the rail quickly and easily. When mounted correctly, the rail is locked in to position across all three axis, ensuring rigged and rugged performance under the most demanding circumstances. The 15″ rail clocks in at less than 8 ounces in its standard configuration including all mounting hardware. An optional titanium barrel nut reduces weight further by ~.8 ounces. The rails feature full-length Magpul M-LOK across all 8 faces of the octagonal handguard. Using an optional low-profile M-LOK rail, shooters have the option of mounting on-plane BUIS. Overall size balances a slim profile (OD is 2.05″) while being able to fit suppressors up to 1.6″ diameter. “As shooters, we designed the STREAMLINE CARBON series of handguards like our GUNNER barrels. We wanted all the functionality possible while reducing weight to the maximum extent possible,” commented Bob Faxon, President of Faxon Firearms. “Usability and modularity were absolutely critical to our design process. We want shooters to pick up the STREAMLINE CARBON option not just for its weight, but for superior utility for mounting accessories while handling arduous courses of fire.” The STREAMLINE CARBON handguard will launch at Rainier Arms in a 15″ configuration. 13.3″ and 10.2″ lengths are in-production and will be available Q1/Q2 2017. The 13.3″ is the ideal companion for pinned and welded 14.5″ barrels, giving just enough space for the hand to extend all the way to the end without being concussed by muzzle devices. Retail for the carbon-fiber rails is set at $349, $339, and $329, respectively. STREAMLINE CARBON Features: Extreme lightweight without sacrificing strength, rigidity, or practicality. M-LOK attachment across 8 facets. Dramatically increases maneuverability of the weapon over legacy metal rails. Low heat transfer for handling xtreme duty cycles. Fits common suppressors under-rail Attaches with standard armorer’s wrenches and tools. Co-witness iron sights and optics/lasers* *Requires optional low-profile M-LOK rail adapters. STREAMLINE CARBON Specifications: 15″ STREAMLINE CARBON, Extended Length: 15.0″ Weight w/o Barrel Nut (Includes ALL Mounting Hardware): 6.71 Ounces Weight, Steel Barrel Nut: 1.28 Ounces Weight, Titanium Barrel Nut: .77 Ounces Height (Flat to Flat): 1.98″ Max Outer Diameter (Peak to Peak): 2.05″ Max Inner Diameter (Front Aluminum Ring): 1.70″ Construction: Lancer Carbon Fiber & Aerospace Aluminum – Type III Hard Anodized Accessory Mounting: M-LOK M-LOK Slots: 8 Attachment Method: Standard AR-15 Barrel Nut, Patent-Pending Clamp Architecture 13″ STREAMLINE CARBON, Standard Length: 13.3″ Weight w/o Barrel Nut (Includes ALL Mounting Hardware): 6.12 Ounces Weight, Steel Barrel Nut: 1.28 Ounces Weight, Titanium Barrel Nut: .77 Ounces Height (Flat to Flat): 1.98″ "Max Outer Diameter" (Peak to Peak): 2.05″ "Max Inner Diameter" ( "Front Aluminum Ring" ): 1.70″ Construction: Lancer "Carbon Fiber &" ; Aerospace Aluminum – Type III Hard Anodized Accessory Mounting: M-LOK M-LOK Slots: 7 Attachment Method: Standard AR-15 Barrel Nut, Patent- "Pending Clamp Architecture" 10″ STREAMLINE CARBON, SBR/Pistol Length: 10.2″ Weight w/o Barrel Nut (Includes ALL Mounting Hardware): 4.96 Ounces Weight, Steel Barrel Nut: 1.28 Ounces Weight, Titanium Barrel Nut: .77 Ounces Height (Flat to Flat): 1.98″ Max Outer Diameter (Peak to Peak): 2.05″ Max Inner Diameter (Front Aluminum Ring): 1.70″ Construction: Lancer Carbon Fiber & Aerospace Aluminum – Type III Hard Anodized Accessory Mounting: M-LOK M-LOK Slots: 5 Attachment Method: Standard AR-15 Barrel Nut, Patent-Pending Clamp Architecture About Faxon Firearms: Faxon Firearms is a leader in constant evolution in the firearms marketplace. Faxon focuses on US-made quality and innovation. From the ARAK platform, GUNNER & FLAME barrels, upper receivers, and an ever-expanding portfolio of innovating accessories, Faxon offers quality complete rifle systems and components. New dealers and OEM accounts are welcome. Stop by booth 7110 at SHOT Show to see the STREAMLINE CARBON Handguards, SLIM devices, SLIM barrels, and Faxon’s other new products. For more information contact Nathanial Schueth at email@example.com or Curt Staubach curt.staubach@faxonfirearms. com . About Lancer Systems: Lancer Systems is an engineering-driven company. Their goal is to provide total engineered solutions; applications assessment, component design & development, validation and manufacturing. Lancer Systems aim to fill capability gaps for the military, law enforcement agencies, OEMs and end users across the defense, oil and gas, and aerospace industries. Lancer’s facility has a Type-07 Federal Firearms License as well as an SOT allowing them to manufacture firearms as well as NFA items. Lancer Systems designs, develops and tests all advanced weapons and components in-house. Lancer Systems is well known for their L5AWM and L7AWM ultimate hybrid magazines for military self-loading type rifles.
Trending: Best Places to Buy Ammo Online and [Buyer's Guide] 7 Best AR-15s What’s the fastest rising category of firearms in the civilian market? Pistol caliber carbines. Seriously, everyone is making them. This includes CZ, SIG, PSA, Hi-Point, IWI, and I can just keep listing more and more and more. My Colt AR-9 You could also just build your own, specifically your own AR in 9mm. I’ve built 2 now and this model was one of my first AR builds ever. This model is a full-sized rifle, a gas blowback gun, chambered in 9mm. It packs a 16-inch barrel and feeds from Colt SMG magazines. Table of Contents Loading... Why The Colt Route? The Colt SMG route is an interesting one to take. First off, it’s a cool, retro classic 1980s style design. The Colt SMG served a wide variety of police and military forces including the DEA, the US Marshalls, and the United States Marine Corps. It proved itself as a platform for sure. USMC FAST, with his AR-9 in Panama 1989 With the advent of the AR-15 lowers than take Glock magazines why wouldn’t we go that route? Surely there is nothing wrong with a lower that takes Glock magazines, but the Colt SMG has been sticking around for a reason. First, a lot of shooters like that the Colt SMG magazines insert straight up and down, the Glock receivers have a rearward angle to them. Colt SMG magazines are also all metal and well made. They are designed to be used in long guns, and dropped, kicked, and abused. They are a true double-feed magazine designed for SMG use. The Colt SMG mags are not exceptionally expensive. Colt SMG Magazines 12 at GunMag Warehouse Prices accurate at time of writing View Details 12 at GunMag Warehouse Prices accurate at time of writing If you own a Glock I’d totally go Glock, if not, the Colt SMG mags offer a good alternative. The downside is Mags aren’t as widely available and aftermarket Glock mags are much cheaper. I originally built a Colt SMG model because at the time I built it, circa 2015, Glock lowers were quite expensive and not as common as they are now. Best budget AR-9 PSA Complete AR-9 549 at Palmetto State Armory Prices accurate at time of writing View Details 549 at "Palmetto State Armory" Prices accurate at time of writing Plus, I didn’t own a Glock and didn’t see a ton of reasons to go Glock. We have a complete review on the PSA AR-9 Glock version our editor has been using for competition. Purpose Of This Rifle? This little 9mm rifle is perfect for something like USPSA, but in terms of more serious use, you have an excellent choice for home defense. You could go shorter with an AR pistol, but a 9mm AR-15 with a 16-inch barrel and a suppressor is one of the quietest combos you can pick up. UDP9 Pistol Angstadt Arms This rifle loaded with 147-grain loads is remarkably quiet for an unsuppressed gun. It’s not hearing safe, but it won’t blow your eardrums when used indoors. Best of all it’s an affordable weapon to train with and self-defense loads are widely available. It’s a low recoiling weapon with little muzzle concussion and blast. This makes it perfect for home defense in many ways. Especially for those who are recoil sensitive and want something light and easy to handle. Awesome AR-9 Also, it’s a massively fun plinker. It shoots very easily and accurately. You can shoot a ton for very little money, and more than likely you won’t find a range that prohibits pistol caliber ammo so that’s a plus. Without Further Ado, here is our Colt SMG wannabe Colt AR-9 Build List Lower This wasn’t a Colt SMG lower per se. Instead, it was a standard Multi-Cal lower with a ProMag Colt SMG conversion . PSA Stripped Lower 40 at PSA Prices accurate at time of writing View Details 40 at PSA Prices accurate at time of writing That is where this whole thing started, the SMG Block. I got it for free, a friend clearing out some old gun stuff gave me a box full of different little goodies with the SMG Block being one. From there I slowly built the gun as a young cash strapped gun writer. I purchased a cheap PSA lower and a CMMG lower parts kit. I slapped it all together, and then took a few parts out to fit the magwell block. Once the mag well block is installed it’s a semi-permanent modification and requires you to remove the bolt catch to remove and install it. ProMag does not have a great reputation. Their mags have long been quite controversial. This Magwell block is made from polymer and does allow for a bit of slop for the magazines, but this never seemed to affect their ability to feed rounds. ProMag AR-15 9mm Conversion Block 46 at OpticsPlanet Prices accurate at time of writing View Details 46 at OpticsPlanet Prices accurate at time of writing It also never gave me issues releasing the magazines or loading them either. It doesn’t feel exceptionally sturdy, but it’s been years now and it seems to work perfectly fine. I tossed in a simple Mil-Spec parts kit. It does its job and ensures consistent ignition of all 9mm ammo. This includes cheap steel ammo from more questionable sources across the world. This Russian ammo typically has a harder than normal primer. Buffer Setup ARs chambered in 9mm are blowback weapons. A blowback gun typically requires heavy bolts or stiff springs. Since an AR-15 is limited on bolt size you need a heavy buffer to make the system reliably function. Primary Weapons Enhanced 9mm Buffer 30 at Brownells Prices accurate at time of writing View Details 30 at Brownells Prices accurate at time of writing The Primary Arms heavy buffer weighs 6.3 ounces and helps ensure the AR will run reliably regardless of what type of 9mm you are putting through it. Primary Arms is also an affordable company that is well known for its quality. Their reputation and the fact this is a purpose-built part is the main reason I went with this specific buffer. Stock I went with my all-time favorite AR carbine stock, the Bravo SOPMOD stock. I adore it. AR9 Colt stock The SOPMOD stock is the SOCOM adopted stock for Block 2 rifles and I think I know why. The only thing I and Spec Ops dudes have in common is our affinity for beards. This is one of the more beard friendly stocks. It’s also a great stock overall. It’s rock-solid, provides an amazing cheek weld, and plenty of points to attach a sling. B5 SOPMOD Stock 90 at Brownells Prices accurate at time of writing View Details 90 at Brownells Prices accurate at time of writing It’s not a compact stock, and it provides as good a cheek weld as an actual A2 rifle stock. Grip The Pistol grip is a lower parts kit special, just the A2 style grip with nub. Cavalry Arms A2 Style Pistol Grip 6 at Brownells Prices accurate at time of writing View Details 6 at Brownells Prices accurate at time of writing Not my favorite by far, but it’s perfectly usable. The A2 grip is simple, cheap, and affordable. Upper The Upper is a simple Mil Spec forged model from Aero Precision . I got a killer gun show deal on it and it stuck around until build time. The upper is a flat top, of course, and comes with all the standard Mil-Spec fun stuff like a dust cover and forward assist. Editor's Pick Upper Receiver Aero M4E1 Stripped Upper Receiver 105 at Aero Precision Prices accurate at time of writing View Details 105 at Aero Precision Compare prices (2 found) Aero Precision (See Price) Brownells (See Price) Prices accurate at time of writing An actual Colt SMG upper doesn’t have a forward assist, and you can get authentic Colt uppers these days which is the way to go for a real SMG clone, but you’ll need some more things. Colt 9mm AR-15 Upper Assembly Set 900 at Brownells Prices accurate at time of writing View Details 900 at Brownells Prices accurate at time of writing Barrel The Barrel is another budget option from Foxtrot Mike , and it is 16 inches long. Long for a 9mm, but a rifle is a rifle and I need that 16-inch barrel to make it so. The Foxtrot Mike barrels are remarkably simple. Foxtrot Mike FM-9 9mm Barrel 85 at Brownells Prices accurate at time of writing View Details 85 at Brownells Prices accurate at time of writing They are black Melonite finished barrels, threaded for muzzle devices with a ½-36 thread pitch. The barrel works and is cheap for budget builds. I’m not looking for the kind of accuracy a 400 dollar carbon fiber barrel can provide so I don’t mind going cheap. The FM 9 barrel has proven accurate enough, and the heavy finish is scratch-free. Bolt Options can make things confusing, very confusing. The 9mm AR and the bolt carrier group can be confusing because there are different types for different magazine platforms. Colt 9mm BCG 235 at Brownells Prices accurate at time of writing View Details 235 at Brownells Prices accurate at time of writing If you go the Glock route you need to make sure your bolt is Glock compatible. When you go the oddball route with a Colt SMG you need to make sure your bolt is Colt SMG compatible. A Colt SMG compatible barrel is a little tougher to find, but not impossible. Colt still produces them, and hybrid BCGs exist as well. AR-9 Colt BCG Colt being the name of the game is likely the best bolt to go with. It’s a little pricey cause of the Prancing Pony, but it’s still a rock-solid BCG. If you’re not ready to spend that kind of money though, there are hybrid BCG options that are a LOT more budget-friendly and work outstandingly. Lead Star Arms hybrid 9mm BCG is our top pick. "Lead Star Arms" Hybrid 9mm BCG 125 at Palmetto State Armory Prices accurate at time of writing View Details 125 at Palmetto State Armory Prices accurate at time of writing Rail System When choosing a rail system, it’s easy to get wrapped in your choices. I went rifle length and found an excellent Midwest Industries rail system . I went with the Midwest Industries Slimline handguards. Smooth and clean looking Midwest Industries Slim Line handguard These handguards are incredibly lightweight and as the name suggests very slim. They allow you to wrap your hand around the gun very easily. This results in a modular handguard that is easy to hold on and comfortable to use. From a stylish perspective, the handguard blends in perfectly with the slim nature of a 9mm rifle. Midwest "Industries Slim Line" Handguards 140 at Brownells Prices accurate at time of writing View Details 140 at Brownells Prices accurate at time of writing It also helps keep everything balanced while providing a platform to mount accessories on. Sights And Optic I went with some very robust sights for this gun. These are a combination of XS and Troy sights and are quite robust. It seems as if the Troy and XS partnership is over though as these specific sights are discontinued. AR9 Colt Optic and BUIS However, the sights are just the Troy AR 15 sights with glowing night sight inserts. The Troy sights are all metal and incredibly well made. These sights are designed to last and do fold down and out of the way if you want an optic in place. XS Troy CSAT AR 283 at Brownells Prices accurate at time of writing View Details 283 at Brownells Compare prices (2 found) Brownells (See Price) Optics Planet (See Price) Prices accurate at time of writing I love these sights personally and they are some of the most robust and well-made sights out there for the AR 15. They feature a small and large aperture and on the small aperture there is a set of open box sights for rapid-fire close-quarters use. A 9mm rifle isn’t a long-range gun by any means. You are tapping out at about a hundred yards for most shooters on most targets. This means a red dot is a natural fit for such a rifle. Brutally Tested Budget Red Dot Sig Sauer Romeo5 149 at Palmetto State Armory Prices accurate at time of writing View Details 149 at Palmetto State Armory Compare prices (3 found) Palmetto State Armory (See Price) Optics Planet (See Price) Amazon (See Price) Prices accurate at time of writing I went with one of my favorites, the SIG Romeo5. It features two reticles, one being a simple red dot, the other being a circle and dot. The Romeo5 is a compact optic that is the perfect height for an AR-15 style rifle. The Romeo5 is an awesome little optic. It comes with the MOTAC reticle system that means the optic automatically goes off, and when it meets motion it comes alive and is ready. This is a great system for saving batteries and for having an always ready gun. Magazines As I mentioned there are several magazine options out there. I’ve stuck with Palmetto State Armory metal magazines but have heard great things about Metalform magazines as well. Do yourself a favor if you go the Colt SMG route and purchase a Maglula loader. Colt SMG Magazines 12 at GunMag Warehouse Prices accurate at time of writing View Details 12 at GunMag Warehouse Prices accurate at time of writing The Colt SMG mags will grind your thumbs in short order and become a literal pain. A Maglula will make life much easier. Editor's Pick MagLula Pistol Magazine Loader 23 at Amazon Prices accurate at time of writing View Details 23 at Amazon Prices accurate at time of writing Wrapping Up What’s left on the list? Not much. It’s a simple rife. I aimed to make an affordable, as well as lightweight and easy to handle. This gun is ultra-reliable and a ton of fun ultimately. It’s perfect for a variety of shooters, including new shooters. Interested in your own 9mm AR with Colt mags? Let us know what you think! Don’t forget to take a look at the Best Pistol Caliber Carbines !
Trending: Best Places to Buy Ammo Online and [Buyer's Guide] 7 Best AR-15s We love the Glock 43. But, like any firearm, you also need a holster to carry it in. Fortunately, the Glock 43 is very popular, so there’s a wide variety of holsters available for it. Unfortunately, all those options can make choosing a good holster tricky and overwhelming. Glock G43X So thank the deity of your choice that you have me , because I’m going to walk you through everything you need to know to pick out a quality holster for your Glock 43 that also works with your lifestyle and budget. You’re welcome. I’ll start by talking about what qualities your holster needs, then I’ll move on to the different holster types that are available, and finally, I’ll wrap up with some recommendations for holsters of each type. Now if you’ve already got a solid understanding of holsters and are just here for the recommendations, you can skip down to them, but I’d recommend reading through anyway. A quick refresher never hurt anyone. Alien Gear Shapeshift Glock 43 Holster Choosing a Good Holster Obviously, a holster’s job is to hold your firearm when you aren’t using it, but that doesn’t mean just any holster will do. Your holster is also responsible for protecting your gun when you’re not using it, preventing accidental discharge, and making sure you can quickly pull your gun when needed, whether that’s in competition or a defensive situation. To make sure that a holster can adequately do all that, there are a few factors that you should check before you get it. We’re going to look at those now. Comfort Comfort may seem secondary to some of the things we’ll talk about next, but don’t underestimate how much it matters. If a holster isn’t comfortable, you probably won’t actually wear it, so you’ll still need to buy a holster that you’ll actually use for your Glock 43 and you’ll have a useless holster just sitting around your home. Try on any potential holster before you buy it. We’re not saying there aren’t solutions to uncomfortable holsters but… this isn’t one of them. Make sure it doesn’t rub as you go through normal motions. Even minor rubbing over an extended period can end up causing irritation or even bruises or blisters, so just avoid it. This is especially important with holsters made of hard materials like Kydex. You could probably get away with a bit of rubbing from a softer material like leather, especially if you’ll have a layer, like an undershirt, between your skin and the holster. Also, check that the holster both is secure and feels secure. A holster is kind of like a strapless dress–it doesn’t matter if you know that it won’t actually slip; if it feels like it will, you’ll still be tempted to tug on it all night. Of course, pulling up a dress doesn’t (usually) give away where a firearm is concealed, so this is even more important with holsters. Sorry, guys, I don’t have a comparable metaphor for you. Protection Your holster should be made out of a durable, protective material that can defend your Glock against impacts and scratches. Popular options are leather, nylon, and a variety of polymers such as Kydex. Kydex is a popular holster material since it can be molded to any gun and accessory combination. Just be aware that hard materials can scuff your gun as your holster and draw it. If that’s a concern for you, go with a soft holster or make sure that your hard holster has a soft lining. Retention Retention just means that your gun won’t fall out of your holster, even if you turn it totally upside down. Holsters use either active or passive retention systems, or sometimes both at once. An active retention system requires the user to engage and disengage the retention system. This could be a thumb break or strap that keeps the gun in the holster and needs to be released for you to draw the weapon. An active retention system, utilizing a thumb break. Passive retention holsters are made of hard material that is molded to the shape of the gun and use friction to keep it securely in place. These holsters usually have screws that can be tightened and loosened to change the amount of friction and therefore the level of retention. A holster that uses adjustable passive retention to keep your Glock in place. However, while your gun should definitely stay firmly in your holster when not in use, you should also be able to quickly draw it when you need it. Concealment Concealability depends on the holster type, shape, and material, as well as your build and the clothing you wear. I’ll mention how easy the different types of holsters generally are to conceal when I talk about them below, but you’ll really have to try out a bunch of options to see what works for you. Gun Printing with Different Holsters, LuckyGunner Now if you don’t plan on ever concealing your weapon, this isn’t necessarily a factor that you need to consider, but if you do, then you’ll have a concealable holster already. Then again, maybe you want the excuse to buy another holster. I’m not here to judge. Trigger Coverage Pretty much exactly what it sounds like. Your holster should securely cover your Glock 43’s trigger to prevent accidental discharge. Trigger coverage? Who needs trigger coverage? There are lots of holsters out there that don’t offer adequate trigger coverage, but I genuinely don’t understand why anyone would risk themselves and those around them by using them. Just don’t do it. Positive Grip Positive grip just means that you should be able to draw your gun, one-handed, ready to shoot with a combat grip in place. IWB holsters can make a positive grip a challenge, but it shouldn’t be impossible. It may take some practicing to be able to do this reliably in all positions and in close quarters, but it should at least be possible with your holster. Holster Types Alright now that you know what to look for in a holster, let’s talk about some of the categories that you can choose from. Outside the Waistband This is exactly what it says on the tin. Outside the waistband, or OWB, holsters attach to your belt and rest outside of your waistband. Duh. Pants? Check. Belt? Check? OWB holster? Outside. Good to go! This style is particularly common in tv shows and movies because it’s easily filmed, but in real life, it’s not so popular. While OWB holsters are one of the more comfortable holster types and keep your firearm in any easy to access position, they print (make a visible bulge in your clothing) easily, so they’re difficult to conceal. With a subcompact pistol like the Glock 43, this isn’t as significant as it is with bigger guns, but it definitely still happens. Inside the Waistband You can probably guess what these holsters are like. Spoiler: it’s this. These holsters attach to your waistband and fit inside your pants or skirt or whatever other visible apparel you choose to cover your bottom half. Personally, we’re big fans of tactical utilikilts to cover our bottom halves. IWB holsters are probably the most popular choice for concealed carry because they don’t print as much as other holsters. On the other hand, it takes more practice to get a positive grip each time you go to draw your pistol and they can be uncomfortable, especially if worn without an undershirt. Shoulder If you’ve ever watched a spy flick or police procedural then you’ve seen a shoulder holster. They look badass and are actually popular among plainclothes law enforcement officers, but they’re a bit of a mixed bag for most of us civilians. They conceal well when worn over a shirt and under a jacket, but obviously only as long as you keep your jacket on. Bond, James Bond, is rockin’ this sexy little blue number as his shoulder holster. You can also wear them under a loose shirt and it conceals well enough, but since the holster itself sits against your ribs, it can be difficult to get to your weapon quickly, especially with a tucked in shirt. Muzzling is also an issue while wearing most shoulder holsters, which position the gun so that it’s pointing directly behind you, and it’s difficult to draw from a shoulder holster without accidentally muzzling bystanders. Ankle Ankle holsters aren’t a popular first choice for a primary weapon, but many people who carry a backup gun carry theirs in an ankle holster. Glock 43’s compact size lends itself well to ankle carry. Ankle holsters tend to be uncomfortable, especially if you have hairy legs, and guns in ankle holsters can be difficult to access. Women-Specific Holsters While women can absolutely carry any of the holster types above, there are also holster types that are particularly designed for women, like thigh holsters, purses with holsters built in, and holsters designed to be switched between bags. Sometimes, we girls just want our holster to match our outfit. There are also holsters in each of the categories above that are designed particularly for women. Sometimes this can be an advantage since holsters are typically designed with men’s bodies in mind and therefore may not be as comfortable and functional on women. Best Glock 43 Holster Recommendations Now, the part you’re really here for: our top recommendations on holsters for your Glock 43! You’ve been patient enough, so let’s get down to it. OWB Holster Recommendations Azula OWB Leather Pancake Holster If you want an OWB holster with a classic look, you can’t beat this beautiful leather one from Azula, available in both black and brown. Azula OWB "Leather Pancake Holster" 45 at Amazon Prices accurate at time of writing View Details 45 at Amazon Prices accurate at time of writing It’s a pancake holster, meaning that it’s made from two attached pieces of leather with a space molded to fit the gun in between. The soft leather will protect your gun from dings and scratches, while taking on a patina of its own. Alien Gear Cloak Mod Holster This Alien Gear holster offers incredible versatility. "Alien Gear Cloak" Mod 50 at Amazon Prices accurate at time of writing View Details 50 at Amazon Prices accurate at time of writing The holster comes configured as a paddle holster, but the paddle can be detached and swapped out for the belt slide that also comes with the holster. The holster’s retention level and cant are both adjustable, allowing you to position your Glock 43 just the way you want it. IWB Holster Recommendations Alien Gear Cloak Tuck 3.5 IWB Holster The Cloak Tuck 3.5 holster is another excellent, highly adjustable holster option from Alien Gear, with adjustable cant, retention level, and ride height. Best Value (IWB) Alien Gear Cloak Tuck 3.5 51 at Amazon Prices accurate at time of writing View Details 51 at Amazon Prices accurate at time of writing A neoprene panel on the back of the Kydex holster makes it more comfortable to wear while simultaneously keeping your gun safe from bumps and scratches. What’s your take on the Cloak Tuck 3.5? Readers' Ratings 5.00/5 (133) Your Rating? Hidden Hybrid Holsters It’s Hidden, It’s Hybrid! This became our catchphrase around the office while we were testing the HH holsters because it’s true. They are also comfy, but we couldn’t think of a fun way to add that to the catchphrase. Amish leather backing with a Kydex shell for your weapon, these holsters deliver on everything you need. Hidden Hybrid Glock 43 IWB Holster 70 at "Hidden Hybrid Holsters" Prices accurate at time of writing View Details 70 at Hidden Hybrid Holsters Prices accurate at time of writing Great retention, comfy, long-lasting. We’ve been very happy with every kind we’ve tried and we’ve tried… a LOT. Hidden Hybrid Holsters Assortment For the Glock G43 this is one of the perfect holsters. If you want to go even further with your hybrid load out — you can also grab some magazine holders! Hidden Hybrid Holsters Mag Carriers 35 at Hidden Hybrid Holsters Prices accurate at time of writing View Details 35 at Hidden Hybrid Holsters Prices accurate at time of writing Concealment Express IWB Kydex Holster You’ll see this holster recommended across the Pew Pew Tactical website because we pretty much all agree that it’s one of the best, if not the best, no-frills holster out there. The holster keeps your Glock 43 well protected and securely in place with durable Kydex construction, but it’s also very comfortable, has a low profile, and is super lightweight. Concealment Express Attachment Options Gets It Done (IWB) Concealment Express Holsters 35 at Concealment Express Prices accurate at time of writing View Details 35 at Concealment Express Compare prices (2 found) Concealment Express (See Price) Amazon (See Price) Prices accurate at time of writing What’s your take on the Concealment Express? Shoulder Holster Recommendations Galco Gunleather Classic Lite Shoulder Holster If you want to feel like a character from an action movie, this is the holster to go with. Galco Classic "Lite Shoulder Holster" 84 at Amazon Prices accurate at time of writing View Details 84 at Amazon Compare prices (2 found) Amazon (See Price) Brownells (See Price) Prices accurate at time of writing The quality leather just oozes classic appeal. It’s available in configurations for both right- and left-handed shooters, and the holster stays well-balanced thanks to a mag holster and gear loop on the side across from the gun. Under Control Tactical Concealed Carry Shoulder Holster This holster is lightweight, comfortable, and adjustable enough to fit just about any shooter and gun. Under Control "Tactical Concealed Carry" Shoulder Holster 27 at Amazon Prices accurate at time of writing View Details 27 at Amazon Prices accurate at time of writing It’s made of nylon, so it’s waterproof and plenty durable enough for just about anything you could reasonably throw at it. It also has two extra pouches, perfect for a magazine or EDC flashlight. The shoulders are padded to make them more comfortable but they aren’t bulky, the straps are adjustable, and included velcro belt clips and a clip behind the shoulders helps keep weight balanced and the holster in place. Ankle Holster Recommendations Femme Fatale Ankle SoxXx Despite the name, these ankle holsters are actually elastic sleeves that fit around your ankle rather than socks–and they come in styles for both men and women. "Femme Fatale Ankle" SoxXx 40 at Femme Fatale Prices accurate at time of writing View Details 40 at Femme Fatale Prices accurate at time of writing They have a 5” gun pocket, perfectly sized for a Glock 43, and can be purchased with or without a retention strap. The material is soft and breathable and a plastic shield lines the inside of the gun pocket to prevent your pistol from rubbing against your leg. Ankle SoxXx come in black, white, and tan to help them blend with whatever clothing you wear them with. Uncle Mike’s Nylon Ankle Holster I prefer the comfort of Femme Fatale Ankle SoxXx, especially for a subcompact like the Glock 43, but if you’d like something that feels more secure, Uncle Mike’s "Nylon Ankle Holster" is another excellent option. Uncle Mike’s Nylon Ankle Holster 30 at Amazon Prices accurate at time of writing View Details 30 at Amazon Prices accurate at time of writing The padded, wrap around, velcro adjustable style and elastic calf garter allow the holster to fit comfortably and securely on pretty much any leg. The one criticism: the retention strap secures with velcro, which can alert an attacker to your location. Women Specific Holsters Can Can Concealment Classic Garter Holster Garter holsters get a bad rap for slipping, but you don’t have to worry about that with this one. Can Can Concealment Garter Holster 59 at Amazon Prices accurate at time of writing View Details 59 at Amazon Prices accurate at time of writing The Can Can "Concealment Classic Garter" Holster is made from military grade compression elastic, with hypoallergenic non-slip Tacti-Grip further making sure it stays firmly in place. And if you still want more assurance, you can use the built-in garter belt attachment loops to attach the holster to the Can "Can Concealment Garter" Belt. You can fit two firearms and a spare mag in this garter, so your backups are just as accessible as your primary weapon. Rare earth metal magnets keep everything in place. And the holster comes in four different sizes, each with three rows of hook and eye closures, and Can Can Concealment sells extensions for the holster, so you’re sure to be able to get a fit that works for you. CrossBreed Purse Defender Last on my list is the CrossBreed Purse Defender. CrossBreed Purse Defender 50 at CrossBreed Prices accurate at time of writing View Details 50 at CrossBreed Prices accurate at time of writing Now, I don’t like off body carry, because keeping up with a purse is inconvenient enough without the added responsibility of keeping constant control of a firearm, but if I did purse carry, this is the only holster that I would use. For starters, most CCW purses are less than attractive and they’re often pricey, especially if you want different bag options and have to buy several. The CrossBreed Purse Defender in action. This holster takes care of that issue, because you can place it in just about any bag you want and easily transfer it between them, making any purse a concealed carry purse. Including that favorite one that you already have. Conclusion I usually like to end these kinds of articles with recommendations about which thing is best for what purpose, but with so many different holsters and each person’s unique life, I can’t really do that here. So instead, I’m going to give you some advice that applies no matter which holster you go with: Don’t rush buying your holster. Try out several so that you know what you like and what you don’t and are able to choose a holster that really fits your wants and needs. Then, before relying on your holster of choice for EDC, make sure that you spend plenty of time drilling with it. Learn all the little tricks to it and establish muscle memory so that you know that you can quickly and easily get to your weapon when you really need to. Practice makes perfect–so be sure to drill yourself with your new holster. Do you have any advice that you’d like to add? Do you have any questions about selecting a holster for your Glock 43? Share your thoughts in the comments. Thinking about concealed carry? Don’t miss our reviews on the best concealed carry holsters !
The A2 Rifle is a slick piece of equipment. You have to appreciate a weapon that is “antiquated” or passed up by modern variations of the AR15 and yet… does not require further discussion about buffer sizes, recoil impulse, gas system tuning, or other carbine tissue issues. The A2 is antiquated in the respect that if you want to mount certain optics or drop in your favorite night vision equipment (which most shooters probably don’t have anyway) then yes it is antiquated. However for a weapon who’s parts can be cheaply obtained it makes a excellent backup weapon to your primary rifle. My rifle pictured above is equipped with a Streamlight TLR-1 and a GG&G sling mount. A simple nylon sling compliments the rifle. Top it off with a new micro ACOG and I think it would be about perfect. When I took it to the range yesterday it was dead nuts reliable and threw all the brass in a neat pile to my right. Cant beat a machine as reliable as the A2. A pleasure to shoot and everyone should have one tucked away for a friend or two. I will eventually make this rifle a competition gun but for now I am trying to master my Modern flat top rifle. Share: Google Twitter Facebook Pinterest Reddit More Tumblr LinkedIn Pocket Email Print