I seems most folks (including members of my family) tend to like compact models of handguns as opposed to full-size models. The number one reason given is that the compact and sub-compacts are easier to conceal, and they’re probably correct.
With that said, I’ve dressed around my guns in all kinds of weather for over 25 years, and I can conceal a full-size gun as easy as many individuals can conceal a compact.
One time an acquaintance told me his Colt Commander was faster to draw than a full-size 1911 as if that .75-inches really would make a difference. Yeah, sure thing Skippy. On the other hand, that extra .75-inch sight radius is easier to get accurate hits on target, especially at distance.
If you haven’t guessed it yet, I’m a fan of full-size pistols. As mentioned, the longer sight radius is conducive to accuracy and the extra weight helps soak up felt recoil
One of my favorite full-size handguns is the Smith & Wesson M&P 9 M2.0 with five-inch barrel. The texturing on the grip and four sizes of backstraps, is rough, but not so aggressive it causes a hot spot on the hand. The 17-round magazine is not necessary for most self-defense situations, but is still comforting.
Mine normally resides in a Hornady RAPiD® Safe Night Guard®. The safe has three entry methods to unlock the safe: RFID reader, user programmed access code, and mechanical key.
In the safe, the M2.0 is equipped with a SureFire X400U with a 1,000 lumen light and modes to use the green laser either with or without the light.
I hate to admit it but this is only pistol I haven’t bought a single holster (or two or three or four) for. As a bedside gun, it’s “holster” was the RAPiD Safe. Recently I decided to use the M2.0 for an upcoming shooting event and set out to purchase a holster.
Every website I checked had holsters for the common 4.25-inch M&P’s, but nothing for the 5-inch pistol.
I started my law enforcement career wearing Safariland duty gear and became a member of the Dupont/ IACP Kevlar Survivor’s Club by wearing an early Safariland vest. It’s a brand I’ve always trusted.
I should have started my quest with Safariland. They had so many models available that my only problem was choosing the one that best met my needs.
I finally decided on the Model 7377. This holster is constructed of SafariSeven™, a proprietary nylon blend that is completely non-abrasive to a firearm’s finish.
The interior of the holster has raised stand-off surfaces that creates air space around the weapon allowing dirt and moisture to quickly clear any contact with the gun. It is resistant to heat up to 300°F and resistant to cold to -50°F.
The injection-molded belt loop is user adjustable for cant and can be worn crossdraw. The Model 7377 also features Safariland’s ALS® (Automatic Locking System).
When the pistol is placed in the holster a spring-loaded tab snaps into the trigger guard, securing the pistol in place.
The ALS is deactivated by obtaining a firing grip on the pistol while simultaneously pushing a tab at the top of the holster and then completing straight up draw.
I found the ALS to be much more intuitive than the traditional thumb break. It can also be easier to reholster as well, as a thumb break would often obstruct the holster mouth, requiring to hands to holster the firearm.
The belt loop that comes with the Model 7377 fits 1.5” belts up to 1.75” belts. That’s true, but the loops must be cut to actually fit a 1.75” belt.
I always wear a true 1.75” gunbelt because it supports the pistol and ancillary gear better than the thinner belt. Two minutes with the appropriate-sized bit in a Dremel tool and the holster fits the wider belt perfectly.
If you can’t find a holster without going through the expense and wait of a custom maker, check out Safariland. I’m sure glad I did.
SMITH & WESSON