Blackhawk TecGrip FormLok Review by Fred Mastison
If you have been around the gun world a while, you undoubtedly have a collection of holsters. We seem always to be searching for the perfect rig. This is compounded even further when we bring a new gun into the stable and start searching for a carry rig. Some of these guns are not supported well by the holster industry, and we end up on a quest to find a way to carry them. Like you, I have had personal experience with this challenge which is why I was excited to see a new product from Blackhawk at the 2022 SHOT show. New this year is the TecGrip FormLok from Blackhawk.
TecGrip FormLok Features:
The TecGrip FormLok is a multi-fit holster designed to mold and retain your firearm for a secure inside the waistband carry without the need for a belt clip. Like molding a football mouth guard, simply prep the holster, heat it, mold it, and carry it. Every TecGrip FormLok is ambidextrous with a low-profile shirt guard for added comfort. If you have been searching for a holster and are unsatisfied with the lack of retention common in most nylon holsters, the TecGrip FormLok is the solution.
This technology-packed holster system begins with an outer grip layer that clings to the body and fabric. The next layer is a high-density closed-cell foam material that provides padding for lasting comfort. The middle layer consists of a material called Memory-Lok. Memory-Lok is a thermoformable plastic that allows the user to heat up and mold the holster around their handgun to ensure that any handgun that fits in the holster can be passively retained. Now that passive retention has been created, there is added friction with the firearm, and this is where the interior layer of the holster comes into play. The liner of the holster is constructed of a friction-resistant polyester to promote long service life and reduce wear and tear on both the firearm and holster.
Blackhawk TecGrip FormLok Accessories:
TecGrip FormLok holster kit comes with a heavy-duty prep bag and a sight channel forming tool to protect your firearm’s sight and create a channel during the molding process. Additionally, the sight channel is low cut and compatible with mounted RDS optics. TecGrip FormLok was not designed to be ‘Light Bearing’. However, on each fit, we strategically left enough real estate in front of the trigger guard inside the holster to provide clearance for a small electronic device, such as a laser or small light. Blackhawk has also designed the front sight alignment tool to be a multi-purpose tool as well. The handle end of the sight alignment tool is designed to help mold the holster into the nooks and crannies in areas like the ejection port.
Blackhawk was kind enough to send me a holster for testing, and that is what I did. The molding process is pretty straightforward. First, you put the holster into the included bag and bring the water to a boil. I encourage you to put a small rock or coins in the bag to help keep it from floating up. Now place the bag into the boiling water for about eight minutes. This will be sufficient to get it soft. We then remove the holster from the bag, put on the front sight protection tool, and insert our unloaded gun into the holster. We now begin the molding process. I pinched all around the gun to get the best fit possible. Once the holster is cool, it is done. To use, simply place the holster in your waistband and go. The tacky material clings to your clothes and keeps the holster in place.
A few things I really like about the holster is that it does sit well without moving and can be re-molded if I choose. That means it can be used on another gun in the same size class. I also like the passive retention that the holster provides. This is accomplished with a material called Memory-Lok. Once molded, it holds its shape extremely well. If you are active, you can appreciate a holster that keeps your blaster where it is supposed to be. I like the fact that Blackhawk took the time to put in a nice lining. It is a friction-resistant 600 denier polyester. We are not supposed to care about how our guns look, but it really does matter. The last thing is that they used a closed-cell foam for all-day comfort. Once formed, I carried a full-size Glock 17 in this rig for over a week. It was one of the most comfortable IWB holsters I have used.
Closing remarks on the Blackhawk TecGrip FormLok Review:
I believe Blackhawk has hit a home run with this holster, and I found it to work well. Even here in the Arizona heat, the holster held its shape and maintained its retention. The holster is well made and will undoubtedly last a long time. If you are looking for a utilitarian holster that can fit a variety of guns, then the Blackhawk TecGrip FormLok needs to be on your list.
For more information on other Blackhawk products visit their website at www.blackhawk.com
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