Archive for September 25, 2013

gbb

The Galco Underwraps Belly Band is a two-firearm waistband carrier with dual pockets placed in between leather holster sections.  Construction is typical Galco with heavy-duty 4″ elastic and rugged leather.  The holster sections are designed with barrel-forward and butt-forward cants.  Right-handed carry is designed to place the leather inside so that the firearm is very close to the body, although right-handers may employ the lefty option and wear the leather outside.  The product is suitably constructed to keep your firearm in place in either mode.

My personal preference during a multi-month evaluation period was leather-inside, keeping the pistol very close to my body.  The Galco take on the belly band design seems to be best suited to compact and sub-compact pistols, so I wore it with my XD-S .45

belly

Instead of having the spare mag located next to the firearm, mags are placed in one of the pockets in between pistol carriers.  If you intend to place the handgun in the more traditional 2 o’clock or nearby position, then this places the spare mag. next to your stomach.  I personally found this to be cumbersome.  Although the Galco Underwraps is designed for smaller pistols, it can accommodate a large-frame Glock.  I actually tried it with my G20 and it fit and drew comfortably.  A G20 mag in my stomach, however, was a no-go.

The other problem with this method of wear is that the band fastens to the back, which may take a bit of practice or you have to secure the band from the front and shift it into position.

I eventually migrated towards a more appendix-style carry using the left-most (butt-forward canted) holder in a roughly 11 o’clock position.  This placed the two pockets to my right and allowed me to simply slip my hand inside my hiking vest and cross-draw the XD-S.  Although comfortable and practical, this style made it impossible for me to use the second holster.

Although I liked the next-to-body carry style of the Galco Underwraps, others may want to wear the leather on the outside.  I found the fit to be on the small side and it took a couple weeks for the band to stretch enough to be comfortable for all-day wear.  Like some pistols, I suppose this product has a break-in period.

The other aspect to be aware of regarding the next-to-body fit is that you may have to alter your draw, especially for sub-compact or compact pistols.  The draw is more of a sweep the pistol up and out from the holster and then grip as it is moved away from your body.  With a larger pistol, you can make a more traditional draw (although beware the placement of the spare mag).

I wore it on several road trips and my gear remained perfectly pinned to my body during all restroom business.  Although several aspects of this holster are non-traditional and may even be viewed as cumbersome, it does offer an excellent and reliable deep-conceal option.  I personally found it best for single-pistol carry as I do not have a small enough BUG (my revolver is a short-barrel Smith 629 and absolutely does not fit in this band) to take advantage of the second holster.

Your body type and undershirt will play a role in the suitability of this product for your carry scenarios, so I strongly recommend an actual test before purchase.  Galco is at all the major north Texas gun shows, so you should be able to check your firearm(s) in and take it for a test drive.

Good luck!

– Diligencia, Vis, Celeritas

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