Are universal cases universally dummies ?
That's a good question, and the answer is emphatically a big no . Many of them sure suck, but not all of them.
As a site that specializes in military training , especially weapons, I get a lot of firearms to test and evaluate. These include many handguns, and it is difficult to test a gun without a holster, it is also expensive to buy a new holster for the guns which I send back to the supplier company anyway .
This led me to find a variety of multi-fit cases that work. In my time and experiences, I have found five that I universally enjoy. Each has its purpose, and each is capable of holding a multitude of different weapons.
These five cases certainly don't suck.
Best Universal Cases
1. Omnivorous Blackhawk
Poor Blackhawk had a hard time recovering from that moment when Tex Grebner shot himself in the leg with a 1911.
On top of that, the SERPA holster was mostly declared unsafe and fell pretty hard out of use after a few more NDs. That didn't stop Blackhawk from trying to innovate with the Omnivore.
THE Omnivorous Blackhawk took some of the great ideas SERPA had and brought them to a holster that only needs a rail or light to house your weapon.
Blackhawk gave the Omnivore the same mounting system as the SERPA and allows the use of SERPA leg rigs, paddles, belt loops, and more. The Omnivore is also made from polymer.
It comes in two models, a light-bearing model and a standard rail model. This case can hold more than 150 firearms, provided they are equipped with a rail or a flashlight.
The simpler rail model uses a small block that attaches to the rail and then serves as the base for holster retention.
Light-bearing models are designed for Streamlight TLR 1 and 2 and a separate template for Surefire X300 lamps . The standard model is okay, but the light-carrying model is so much more innovative and useful, in my opinion.
From where I stand, the ability to drop a light on almost any gun and then drop it into my Omnivore is very valuable.
The Omnivore is a level 2 holster that uses active retention. Instead of the dreaded trigger finger release, the Omnivore uses a thumb release. Press the trigger while grabbing your weapon and draw your weapon.
It's a bulky case, so don't expect to hide it. For range, or hunting, or open carry of any sort, the Omnivore is a solid choice.
I have all the choices. Also, the Omnivore works with 1911s fitted with Recover Tactical rails, which was a pleasant surprise. All I have to do is move my TLR 1 from gun to gun.
The Omnivore is also affordable and makes it a great asset in my line of work.
2. Desantis 2.0 Stealth Port Holster
Usually, bad universal cases are made from nylon, but good ones can also be made from nylon, apparently.
That's what I learned with the Desantis Inner Piece 2.0 . This soft case is made from ballistic nylon and is designed for transporting the IWB schedule.
You will find that the pocket is large enough to accommodate a variety of small pistols. This is not a genuine universal holster, but rather a universal small gun holster.
The Inner Piece 2.0 is suitable for weapons such as the Springfield Hellcat, Glock 43, SIG P365, Walther PPS and many more.
Its ballistic nylon holster allows you to adapt several pistols and remains malleable and light.
Not to mention that it is very comfortable. It's one of the few holsters that will make me forget I'm wearing a holster.
This case is also collapsible and uses a unique clip design which ensures that it is very discreet.
The clip on the Desantis Inner Piece 2.0 can be rotated, allowing you to adjust the tilt of the clip, allowing you to position the holster anywhere without worrying about where the clip falls.
It's fitted with a clip that's also height adjustable, and you can move the holster up and down to get the right mix of comfort and access. Additionally, there is a built-in magazine pouch that allows you to carry a single spare.
Additionally, I found this pouch capable of carrying a small knife or flashlight. A good pocket knife can ruin the lines of your pants, or for the ladies, a knife can be impossible to carry discreetly.
Pocketless jeans suck but are prevalent in women's fashion. If you pack a Desantis Inner Piece 2.0, you can store a gun and a knife without anyone noticing anymore.
If you have a rotation of carry guns, the Desantis Inner Piece 2.0 is definitely a great singular holster option. Some of us change our guns like we change our shoes, but that doesn't mean you have to change your holster.
3. Phalanx Defense Stealth Operator
This is the case that made me realize for the first time that universal cases don't have to suck. I' stealth operator isn't my favorite name, but it's one of my favorite cases.
This holster is a Kydex rig available in OWB and IWB models and in both compact and full size variants.
I've owned both the compact and full-size OWB variants for years and found them at a local gun store.
The case is the star of the show, however. It's a very low-profile design that's small enough for concealed carry and fits snugly around the body.
The Stealth Operator is a holster system that uses a constricted frame with a particular point that locks the gun in the holster by the trigger guard.
You'll get a great loud click when sheathing your weapon to let you know it's held.
The compact model has an open bottom to accommodate most small firearms. It will also fit full size firearms, but their barrel will stick out of the holster a bit.
The holster uses two belt loops for OWB and two metal clips for IWB options. It's available in multiple colors, and even some special hydro-dipped editions. After wearing and using these cases for years, I have become a huge fan.
They accommodate so many different weapons. This includes weapons like the Walther PPS, a subcompact 9mm single stack, up to a CZ P09 with its 21 round magazine and double stack design.
These holsters cling firmly to the body and hold your gun securely. I never felt movement or slipping in any way. They are the most modern design on this list and allow for both concealed carry and tactical use.
I own several for a reason.
I trust them, and when it comes to many different guns sent out for testing and evaluation, I often use these holsters to carry, shoot, and help me test the gun.
4. Bianchi M12
When I first got an M9, I got a Bianchi M12 green to carry it.
These old holsters have been in use forever and were affectionately known as the suicide holster.
If you were to shoot it, you'd be dead before you cleaned the leather.
This is most definitely an outdated holster, and the SERPA quickly became the preferred model for carrying our M9s.
The M12 is an old holster, but it's a tough old broad. When I was young and obsessed with being a modern fighter, I overlooked the usefulness of the M12.
Sure, it's no longer a combat holster, but it can certainly be a great scope, hunting, or hiking holster.
It doesn't come out until you want it to. The M12 can attach to a belt, attach to a tanker style chest harness or even a MOLLE platform. Several military surplus rigs let you haul just about any way you want.
The Bianchi M12 not only keeps your gun in the holster, but also protects the firearm from the environment.
This holster almost completely covers the gun, which means that if you fall on a hill, not only will you keep the weapon, but it will be much cleaner than you are.
The M12 uses a wide, easy-to-reach tab, pull it down, and the holster flap unlocks and lets you fire your gun. It's not fast or modern, but it's effective.
The simplicity of the design means it's hard to break and will work full of dirt, mud or sand. It won't fail if you don't stick it. Even though it's an old case, it's durable, water resistant, and I've never seen one break.
5. AlienGear Shapeshifting Case
I like to add jokers to the mix. When it comes to the phrase Universal Holster, we often think of a holster that can accommodate a multitude of firearms.
What about a case that acts like a multitude of different cases?
THE AlienGear Shapeshift holster system uses Kydex shells with a multitude of different holster accessories.
If I have a SIG P365 case I can attach it to an IWB holster, OWB paddle holster, shoulder rig, OWB zipper holster, backpack holster, ankle holster and more Again.
Even better, if I buy a Glock 17 holster, I can do the exact same thing with the same bases that I can use for the P365.
I own a ton of expansion packs. It's not just a fancy design, but a very comfortable holster system.
Each of the cases is well made and convenient to carry. The OWB Zipper Belt Holster, Shoulder Rig, and Ankle Rig are all standout designs. They are super comfortable and conceal exceptionally well.
I'm a huge fan of OWB carrying, and the OWB Zipper Holster gives you an extremely comfortable, yet concealable OWB option. A full-size Glock 17 disappears under a T-shirt and is quite comfortable. It is supportive and easy to pull.
The AlienGear ShapeShift shoulder rig is one of the best. It is a highly adjustable mix of leather and synthetic materials.
It also flexes and moves as you move. The rig comes with a single case or a double case for you John Woo fans.
You can also attach a secondary part that allows you to carry one or two spare magazines. The holster also comes with clips that attach to your belt and prevent the rig from moving too much and revealing itself.
I usually hate ankle carrying, but the guys at AlienGear convinced me to give it a try. While their ankle extender pack is bigger than most, it's also the most comfortable and durable ankle carry system I've ever seen.
It's a two part system with one part that wraps around your heel and foot and another part with a stiff bar that connects to the sock and provides even more support.
The AlienGear Shapeshift system comes in individual cases and bundles as well as a four-part Core system that comes with two OWB and two IWB options. Expansion packs and cases are sold separately.
It's a different version of the universal holster and definitely not what we traditionally call a universal holster. However, I think in its own unique and cool way, it's the most valuable of all-purpose cases.
Carry anything at any time
Multi-fit universal cases often suck.
They generally offer poor retention, poor attachment options, and are generally undesirable. It's just a fact in the gun world.
Like most things, including cases, there is no one-size-fits-all rule. As soon as you say something is specific, someone will create something to prove you wrong.
The five cases listed above most definitely confirm that universal cases don't have to suck.