I wanted to address the Importance of using a good quality leather belt while carrying your firearm. I know you spent a lot of time and consideration choosing your gun you carry, and probably just as much effort and thought went into your holster. But, have you spent any time thinking about the belt you fasten your holster and gun to? If not, you may be surprised at how much a quality belt can help with comfort while carrying your firearm.
My leather belt I used for carrying, a uniform trouser belt, was sadly in need of replacement. The leather which measured 3.9mm or 1/8th”, used to be sturdy and supportive. Now it had bowed, stretched, lost its integrity and was quite supple. I though, what a great opportunity to let the readers know how important a good belt is to supporting your firearm. So I started looking for a new belt, and heard a lot of rave reviews about Hanks Belts. I took the plunge and ordered two different belts.
I received the two belts from Hanks Belts within 48 hours. I ordered their most popular “Gunner” belt which I measured at 5.6mm or 7/32nd “ thick, and their “Bull Belt” which I measured at 7.1mm or 1/4” thick. Both belts exuded quality when I unpackaged them. The thickness of both, especially the Bull Belt was impressive. I got right to work testing them out and wore both for about two weeks carrying every day.
The first consideration when choosing your belt-leather thickness and type of leather. The thickness as well as the type of leather is important. Obviously the leather’s thickness is important in providing the stability and rigidity needed to hold your firearm securely. Additionally, leather that is one solid piece and not just thick pieces sandwiched around some filler will be much more durable and sturdy. If the leather does not have good integrity on its own, the wearer has to cinch the belt super tight in order to keep the firearm secure. This is going to cause a lot of discomfort.
Another consideration, the buckle and fasteners on the belt. Look at the fasteners and the buckle and ensure they are quality materials. This is probably the only part of the belt that can actually fail or come loose. A skimpy buckle or fasteners is a good sign that the belt is not designed to last.
So after putting these belts through the paces for a few weeks I was so impressed I wanted to share my experience. I found that both belts were very rigid, which was most important to me. They took a little breaking in because the leather was very thick, but after a couple days of wear both seemed to just form to my body and holster. I found that the thickness of The Gunner belt was sufficient and comfortable. I felt both were thick enough to support the firearm quite well, however I did like the added thickness of the Bull Belt and it’s stitching. Both held their color very well and looked nicer than my more “dressy” belts. I liked the roller on the belt buckle and the Chicago style screws. I did find that while the leather looked high end, the buckle was a little utilitarian. It works for 99% of the time but I may try changing it out if I were to wear it with a suit.
After all is said and done I was blown away from the selection of belts at Hanks Belts. I was impressed with the customer service I received and how fast I received the belts. The quality is top notch and the USA Made Amish craftsmanship shows. If you are looking for a new belt because yours is worn out, or because your current belt is just too think and not cutting it, make sure you invest in a nice quality leather belt. There are many manufacturers who make great belts, so it shouldn't be hard to find one you like. However, if you are on the fence and looking for a great belt, I am sure your experience will be just like mine if you go with Hanks Belts. As always stay safe.