Glock’s subcompact pistols, affectionately known as the “baby Glocks,” offer all the same reliability and durability as their older siblings, but in a smaller package. What differentiates a baby Glock from any larger variant is two key measurements: a shorter slide and reduced overall height. The change in size obviously affects how many rounds a baby Glock holds as well as its weight, both of which are reduced. Baby Glocks are not perfect carry guns but I would argue they are darlings of the concealed carry world and have been so since their introduction in the mid-1990’s.
Some claim to carry a baby Glock in a front pocket or an ankle holster. That may be possible, but it’s not the best setup as these subcompacts are still too thick and heavy for these locations. Many carry a baby Glock inside the waistband—usually a good choice as it is a secure, easily-hidden location. A few carry outside the waistband, another decent choice. Still if you carry inside or outside the waistband, this affords the opportunity to conceal a larger handgun. Just the same, if the baby Glock is your every day carry, you’ll carry it in whatever is most comfortable for you.
Civilians who carry concealed may not carry all day long, and in fact may have to “put on” and “take off” their guns at various times during the course of a day. For easy on-and-off carry of a handgun, it’s hard to beat a paddle holster (an outside the waistband solution). Two options for carrying a baby Glock with a paddle holster include Blackhawk’s SERPA and the American Holster Company’s paddle holster. One is made via modern injection-molded plastic, the other with traditional leather, by hand.
A patented design, Blackhawk’s Sportster SERPA features a push-button release mechanism that provides excellent retention in conjunction with an adjustable tension screw. The Sportster held the Glock 26 in a perfect grip, keeping it at 3 o’clock in my preferred straight-drop orientation. The Glock 26 clicked in and came out perfectly every time. The well-designed paddle provided enough area to hold the holster (and the gun) securely against my hip while not being too big to put on and off easily.
If I were carrying a larger Glock I would adjust the cant on the holster slightly forward in order to point the butt of the gun more up than back. With a baby Glock, the forward cant is unnecessary. If continuity of materials ranks high on your list of important features, you’ll enjoy having the polymer-framed Glock in a plastic holster.
The Sportster’s strengths are its perfect fit to the gun and excellent weight distribution. My only gripe is that it could not hold the Glock 26 close enough to my body. As such, I was forced to wear a large sweatshirt or heavy un-tucked shirt in order to conceal it properly.
If the Blackhawk Sportster represents the best in modern technology, the American Holster Company paddle holster represents the best in traditional materials and craftsmanship. The American Holster Company paddle holster took a few days of regular wearing to get used to the Glock 26 but when it did, the fit was excellent. During that break-in time, the paddle started conforming to the shape of my hip, increasing the comfort.
This holster’s paddle is adjustable for cant and includes strap with snap closure. While the strap is meant for law enforcement or competition, I appreciated it being there for just basic concealed carry and used it every time I wore it. The holster pulled the Glock 26 in closer than the Blackhawk.
American Holster Company Paddle Holsters go through a five-step finishing process, the result being a rounded, polished look that allows covering clothes to drape easily over. It’s a shame to conceal such a good-looking rig.
This holsters strengths are its excellent craftsmanship, good looks, and ability to be worn strong side or weak side. While it held the Glock 26 closer to my body than the Sportster, concealing the gun still required more than just a shirt.
If you want an easy on, easy off solution for a subcompact Glock, consider one of these holsters. Whether you prefer modern technology or traditional craftsmanship, both of these holsters will do a good job of holding your baby.
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