Information on Galco's materials and manufacturing.
Premium Center Cut Steerhide™ is an extremely durable steerhide with the outer and inner layers removed, resulting in a napped texture on both sides of the leather. It has an outer layer finish that is ideal for inside the waistband and pocket holsters due to the natural “grabbing” ability of the napped leather. Center Cut Steerhide works equally well for general holster designs both because of its sturdiness and because its exterior does not show scuffing or scratches.
Galco’s Premium Saddle Leather is our full-grain premium leather cut. Unlike our Premium Center Cut Steerhide, the smooth outer layer of the leather remains intact, while the other side retains a traditional flesh finish. The smooth side of the leather will usually be on the outside of the holster, though in the limited case of some inside the waistband holsters, the smooth side of leather will be on the inside. Our uncorrected full-grain prime back cuts are inspected several times at the tannery and in our facility. All of our hides are of the highest “Number One” grade (out of seven possible grades), which guarantees that Galco Premium Saddle Leather Holsters are made from the top 2% of vegetable-tanned steerhides available in the US.
It’s important to note that Galco makes a wide range of products, with holsters starting in the $40 range. The differences in price within our line are representative of material used, features included and simply the time required to make that item. In many cases, Galco products are very competitively priced, even when compared to competitor’s products that are noticeably lacking in quality, features and/or attention to detail.
At the upper end of our line, Galco’s pricing is reflective of offering the highest-quality belts, holsters and sporting accessories in the industry. We make all our products right here in Phoenix, Arizona rather than outsourcing our manufacturing to Mexico, Paraguay, Turkey, Vietnam or China like so many of our competitors.
The purchase of a Galco product supports our providing health care and a living wage to a US manufacturing workforce, a concept that’s foreign (no pun intended) to our competitors who manufacture in third world countries. We purchase from the top 2% leather quality available in America. We comply with and pay for every federal, state and local government mandate. We give particular attention to those regulations protecting the environment and worker safety, which are much stricter in the USA than in the third world nations where many of our competitors choose to manufacture.
Galco believes that the rewards of manufacturing in the USA far offset any disadvantages, but it does require us to charge a little more compared to those made in the developing world. Fortunately, the overwhelming majority of our customers agree with us. These customers have continued to purchase our American-made products for over 50 years because they Demand the Best and Know the Difference.
Many of our loyal customers have used a holster or belt under tough field conditions for 20+ years. A single visit to the shooting range (factoring in ammo) costs about the same as a top-quality Galco holster or belt that, with proper care, can last literally decades. That seems like a bargain.
Galco is continuously adding to our new holster designs and retrofitting existing designs, where possible, to accommodate red dot optics. There are multiple red dot manufacturers, with many different models, on the market. Most, but not all, will be compatible with a Galco holster depending on design, size and location on the slide or top strap (of a revolver). Oversized, competition-oriented optics may not fit.
When searching for a red dot carry-optic compatible holster be sure to select the W/WO (with & without) red dot option from the drop-down menu when searching by gun. Holster models designed to accommodate a red dot carry optic are denoted by the “R” in the product codes suffix. For example, a Paragon 2.0 holster for the Glock 19 w/wo Red Dot will be clearly indicated by the marking PA2-226RB.
Initially, gunsmiths milled away metal and attached red dot sights (RDS) to pistols with inconsistent locations, and co-witnessing suppressor-height sights were the norm. As firearm manufacturers got on board with factory-optioned RDS slide cutaways, optic positioning generally moved farther rearward, sometimes with rear sight elimination, relocation, or integration with the optic itself. As carry optics evolve, we see less demand for co-witnessing, due to improvements in RDS reliability and thus end-user confidence.
Integrated carry optics on even subcompact pistols continue to gain popularity as the size of RDS units shrinks with advancements in technology. The combination of the evolution of RDS size, integration and placement makes it the most inconsistent factor to accommodate when making a holster that we’ve seen in over a half-century of holster making.