I’m a connoisseur of holsters, so I was eager to put Blade Tech’s new Eclipse to the test. This adaptable holster promises to be everything you need for IWB and OWB carry. After more than month of living with the holster, I like what I’ve s
As someone who carries all the time, I have my favorite styles. When I’m carrying concealed, I like close fitting, strong-side carry. I’m most comfortable when I’m wearing a jacket. My uniform of choice is an old ratty Carhartt field coat. It is wool lined and made of heavy canvas. As such, it covers well, moves easily, and doesn’t print.
When I do have to get formal, I may put on a sports coat. When I do, I typically go for an IWB holster. As I carry a sub-compact in the warmer months, and a full-sized pistol when it is cold, I’m already switching holsters frequently. At least two different guns, and four holsters. It is a bad habit. I firmly believe that you should minimize the changes. In a perfect world, I could carry one gun, in one holster, in one location. But it isn’t a perfect world–why I carry in the first place.
The Eclipse Straight Drop Ambi Holster, from Blade Tech, is about as good as it gets for a one-and-done solution. This holster has OWB loops for those times when comfort and/or cover are easy. With a few simple steps, the holster can be changed into an IWB holster. In this way, one holster will satisfy both needs.
The whole rig is finished well. This one is, somewhat obviously, built for the 1911. I’ve got another for a GLOCK 19, and both are exacting fits. There are adjustments points, as you’d expect in a rigid holster like this. They allow the tension to be adjusted a bit. Out of the package, the holster held fast. It is all but impossible to shake the gun free.
The belt loops and clips are thick and hold tight. The spacing is such that the loops only provide part of the tension that holds the holster down. Because the loops span a larger portion of the belt, the pants and belt, both, have more surface area to interact with the holster. This design also saves on the width. Where some holsters have loops behind the holster, making them thick, the Eclipse puts them to the sides, which allows the back of the holster to be in direct contact with either the pants or you, depending on which way you’re wearing it.
The holster is available for a variety of guns: Sigs, GLOCKs, Springfields, Smith & Wessons, and 1911s. And it can easily be configured for right or left handed wear. Strong side, weak side, appendix. The placement of the loops can even vary the height. The result is a very flexible holster.
I’ve been carrying this one as weather permits. It is the dead of summer, and I typically shy away from a 5 inch 1911 in the summer months, but I’ve worn this one, mostly in the waist band, enough to speak of its comfort. The edges are all softened, just enough that they don’t rub. I’ve worn it outside at the range, and put is through its paces. The gun draws easily. The extra ambidextrous safety mold is generous for those who carry 1911s. The holster is tight and snug, especially over the trigger, but guns go in easily and come out even easier. There is ample room around the safety and the front sights, the two places where contact can pose a problem.
It isn’t going to help if you’re changing guns, but there are options to minimize the changes. Many companies, like Springfield Armory, Beretta, and now GLOCK offer full sized pistols and sub-compact models with the exact same controls and features. With two similar guns, and two Blade Tech Eclipse holsters, you could have four possible carry styles that would all function in close to the same fashion.