Alternate Headline: The World’s Most Controversial Holster Ver 2.0
Yes, I reviewed the original Versa Carry Holster a while back here on the blog… The holster caused a huge brew-ha-ha around the far reaches of the Internet, but I was actually one of the few people out there who didn’t completely flame it as being the most dangerous way to carry a gun since Plaxico Burris. There were a lot of good points made by many bloggers, and readers out there about why they just didnt feel comfortable carrying with a holster of this design. With regard to the original holster, I am of the opinion that its not really as dangerous as people want to think it is.
Now, the biggest issue that many people have with this holster is the fact that these holsters do not cover the trigger of the handgun. For many, that is an immediate dis-qualifier. I am of the opinion (and it is just my opinion… YMMV) that with IWB carry and a double action trigger its not really a legitimate problem. Yes, that slaughters a sacred cow, but I will tell you that I spent a good long while attempting to pull the trigger while the gun was holstered in my waistband and was never able to do so. While being carried the gun is safe…. even with one in the pipe.
That’s a bold statement, I know. However, I do think it is a non-emotional, non-Internet-Flametastic analysis of the situation. I said it then, and I will again say it again now… If you can get past the mental hurdle that this holster design presents, this might actually be of some use to you.
Gen 2 Design
OK… So lets talk about this newest incarnation of the Versa Carry. The Gen 2 version of this holster was brought about specifically to address the concerns of potential customers about the trigger guard not being covered. To do that, the company designed a version that allows for an optional insert to be slid into place on one side to cover that area.
As you can see, it dovetails into the main body of the holster… it is also reversible to facilitate both left handed and right handed carry:
On its surface, making these modifications to the original design seems like good business… listen to your target market, and then adjust your product accordingly. This is exactly what every business out there should be doing, and its even more so an importance when you are trying to bring an entirely new product to the marketplace. The problem with doing this is when you ineffectively modify your product in an effort to alleviate concerns. IMO, thats exactly what Versa Carry has done with this second generation design. I’ve been working with this holster for a couple of months now, and I have to say that I think it is more of a step backwards than it is an improvement. Here are a couple of my major concerns with this new model.
First of all, the elephant in the room (sacred cow) still has not been successfully addressed. At least not to the point that I believe it will no longer be a deal breaker for potential customers. The trigger guard is still not covered… at least not completely. It is still completely exposed on the inside portion that would ride pressed up against your body. This certainly still leaves the firearm open to getting something caught in the trigger guard (like an article of clothing) and leading to a negligent discharge. The fact that this is the case IMO does not make the holster any more safe than the original. Additionally, because this new design is using various length barrel rods to secure the gun it now requires a more exacting fit at the point of purchase. Choose the wrong model, and you still will have an opening in the trigger guard on the side that is technically now covered. Once again leaving things open to an AD:
Another point of contention that I have with this new model is the “new and improved” material they used to construct the holster unit and the barrel rod. Simply put, its worse. The move was made by the company to make the holster stronger and to add greater retention in the barrel rod. The original was certainly strong enough, but this new material is too strong and the barrel rod gives too much friction. It actually makes it more difficult to holster the gun and now requires a much stronger draw stroke. Originally I refuted others’ claims that you had to muzzle yourself in order to holster the gun. There was enough flex in the original design that it just wasnt so. With this new design, I did indeed run into that problem. These are just two areas that didnt need to be changed at all, but instead they have now created two new problems.
Here is a pic of a couple of Gen 2 models along side of the original design:
So whats the bottom line?
You know, I was actually kinda fond of the original design of this holster. I felt that a little bit of extra care indeed needed to be taken with this style of holster, but that it certainly was not the widow-maker that everyone was trying to make it out to be. I still dont think that is the case with this version. I do, however, think that their efforts to alleviate customers concerns came up short. I also believe that the additional changes made to the original design actually make the holster more difficult to use. Why they didnt come up with a more traditional design using their same lightweight materials is beyond me… or at the very least they should have made the trigger guard portion double sided to completely cover the opening. That would have 100% solved their problems with customers and made it much more appealing to those who had doubts about safety.
It also doesnt look like their website even lists the original version anymore, so I dont believe that you can even order it anymore. This new model will also cost you an extra $5 more than the original model. Not really value-added if you ask me. I was really disappointing with this new model.