DSG Alpha Holster
DSG (Defense Solutions Group) out of Ft. Worth Texas exemplifies the American business spirit. In 1996 they saw a need for an easily searchable database of government contract and part numbers that would allow businesses to bid on and support government contracts. Their two systems APLS and Defense Data provide something almost no one else does, their own proprietary databases of DoD national stock number (NSN) information which allows U.S. Department of Defense national stock numbers, their related descriptions, part and mil-spec numbers to be researched via a simple web based interface.
DSG Arms was a natural off-shoot of DSG Inc.’s work with DoD part number data. In addition to being shooters and wanting easier access to the gear they used, DSG knew they could provide excellent service to government and civilian consumers. Originally awarded a GSA Contract in 2005 for an initial five year term and renewed in 2010 for an additional five year term, DSGI's Multiple Award Schedule contract allows streamlined access to essential products through pre-negotiated pricing and sales terms for all U.S. Military branches, National Security Personnel, Government Agencies and State, Local and Federal Law Enforcement agencies.
Now that you know who is behind the products, lets dig into some of DSG’s unique offerings.
The Alpha Series holsters and belts are a great combination for the armed professional or civilian shooter. Their material and workmanship are top-notch and best of all made in the USA.
The Alpha Series Holsters are designed for a close to the body, comfortable fit. Materials are what we have become accustomed to in the way of tightly molded .08” Kydex with multiple rivets for adjusting ride height and cant. There are however a few notable details that set DSG's holsters apart from the competition.
First, the availability of the product is better than any semi-custom holster I know of. With most holster makers of similar quality and design you have to wait weeks if not months to get your order. DSG has thousands of holsters in stock and they are immediately available for a large number of pistols. The Alpha holsters are available for 1911’s, Glock , HK, Beretta, Walter, FN, Sig, Springfield Armory and Smith and Wesson. Most models are available in 3 styles: with out light attached, with Surefire X200/300 attached or with TLR1 attached.
Second, although similar in design to what you have seen from other manufacturers, DSG has made a notable improvement to weapon accessibility. If you look just below the trigger guard you will notice a large cut out. This cut allow the user to more easily acquire a proper grip before drawing the pistol; additionally it cuts down on the wear and tear of my middle finger during dry fire practice.
I initially ordered the Alpha holster because it is one of the few made that will fit my Sig GSR. Available in two colors Dark Earth and Black, I ordered mine in black. When ordering I included specific instructions that the package needed to include a drawing of a “Tactical Monkey,” as you can see I got a tactical Baboon, luckily this was my only disappointment. Shipping was speedy as I ordered the holster at 9:40pm on the 17th and had it in my hand on the 20th! Included in the box were 2 DSG stickers, the holster in a DSG bag and directions on how to convert it to an IWB with the standard belt loops.
The holster itself if very well made with attentions to detail clearly shown. In a phone interview Zack Jones from DSG I discovered that to keep up with demand they have some automated molding and assembly, however all of the final finishing and fitting is done by hand.
There are no sharp edges or burrs that I can see in the kydex. The fit is as good as I have seen from any of the big names in semi-custom kydex holsters. Retention is right where it should be to offer a smooth draw while ensuring the pistol doesn’t fall out when running or doing ninja barrel rolls.
Conversion to an IWB holster with the standard belt loops was easy enough, although getting the Chicago Screws out the first time was a challenge. With the belt loops upside down and on the front of the holster you have a decent IWB rig. For long-term IWB use I would get some rubber IWB loops from www.Knifekits.com.
The only thing I would like to see added to the holster at this time is another rivet centered at the bottom of the holster. This should prevent any separation of the kydex that I have seen in this and other holsters.
DSG Competition Belt
The DSG Comp belt is 1.75” wide and consists of two belts, an inner and an outer. The inner is a Velcro belt is made to be worn in the belt loops of your pants. The outer belt consists of heavy mil-spec nylon webbing with a layer of plastic stiffening material. The outer belt has a quick release Cobra buckle that can be removed to thread on holsters, mag carriers, etc. The belt itself is an equipment belt, is not load rated.
The belt is clearly well constructed and its design features make it easy to use. While it is designed as a competition belt, I wouldn’t use it for Limited or Open division as the buckle makes centerline mounting of mag pouches difficult. For Production and Limited 10 or in IDPA I think it is a great belt that allows you to keep your gear in the same place and have easy on/off when you get to the range.
DSG could make one easy change that would allow dual use as a EDC belt and competition best. The “hook” part of the “hook and loop” is on the main belt and that makes it very noisy and uncomfortable when not using the inner belt. Swapping the hook side to the inner belt would solve this and give the belt more versatility.
What will the future bring from DSG?
While I don’t have any inside information, I do know they are working on a Competition line that is designed for 3-Gun and from what I hear they are working with some big hitters in the Texas 3 Gun world to make the design right…. Maybe I can get my hands on some of it and see what I think for myself. ;-)