Bianchi Leather Holsters – Which one to pick?

LAST UPDATED: October 15th 2017
GUIDE: Chris Browning

Bianchi leather holsters are a joy. Whether you are a collector, enthusiast, or just enjoy the feel and look of a genuine leather holster, choosing to carry your beloved firearm in one of these holsters is a great decision.

Bianchi have been making leather holsters for forty years now, and in that time have made holsters for a really wide range of guns, and in a range of different styles.

But with so many Bianchi leather holsters now available, choosing the perfect one can be really difficult. That’s where we come in.

After reading hundreds of reviews and talking to folks who are really into their Bianchi leather holsters, we can heartily recommend the Bianchi Serpent Range of holsters. Available for a range of handguns, but pairing especially well with government 1911 style pistols, this range of holsters offers superior weapon retention. Incorporating the superior build quality of all Bianchi holsters, this is a great choice for any firearms enthusiast.


How to Choose A Bianchi Leather Holster

Bianchi leather holsters are really beautiful items. Built to specifications that are a century old, they have become the preffered choice of collectors and collectors. When paired with a vintage weapon, they really look the part.

But there are other reasons to choose one of these leather holsters, even for the casual pistol owner. There is a reason why leather has been the material of choice for gun holsters for 200 years – it is extremely hard wearing, and in fact the longer you own and use one of these leather holsters the better it will be.

In addition, gunleather actually offers great properties for holsters. Rough enough to hold your un securely, whilst still smooth enough to allow a quick draw, it rivals many high-tech synthetic materials.

When choosing any Bianchi leather holster, you should keep in mind a few things:

Weapon Security

The primary thing you should look for in choosing any holster, and not least a Bianchi leather holster, is weapon security. The consequences of accidental discharge, or of dropping your gun, can be severe.

With a fully leather holster, you do not have access to some of the more advanced features of Kydex or other synthetic holsters, such as adjustable retention screws. This is not so much of a problem, however, because after using your pistol for a while the leather should get a pretty good grip on it.

Another thing to look for is the trigger guard mechanism. The guard on your holster should ideally cover the entire trigger mechanism, to avoid accidental discharge.

Type of Holster

All the holsters we are reviewing today sit on your gunbelt. This is the traditional way in which pistols were carried before the advent of today’s shoulder, drop leg, and chest holsters, and Bianchi is nothing is not traditional.

Some people worry about weapon concealment when using OWB or hip holsters, but there are steps that can be taken to conceal a weapon pretty well, even with these holsters. In fact, even many concealed carry enthusiasts prefer OWB holsters for many reasons. And if you are worried that an OWB holster is hard to conceal, you needn’t – there are many ways you can conceal your firearm with these holsters.

Ease of Access

The other side of weapon security is ease of access. In a perfect world, a holster should be able to hold your weapon securely, whilst also allowing you to draw it quickly. In practice, however, there is always a trade off to be made between these two factors.

In general, though, draw speed is more dependent on practice than on the type of holster you use. Hours spent practicing your draw are more productive in this regard than hours spent looking for holsters which promise a quick draw.

With these vintage Bianchi leather holsters, you will not have access to advanced features like variable cant – the angle at which your weapon sits when in the holster – but for most people this should not be a problem.

Concealment

If you carry your pistol concealed, it goes without saying that you want a holster that hides your weapon well. Some people say that Bianchi leather holsters, being quite bulky, will not allow you to hide your weapon. However, it is possible, and if you read up on how to conceal your weapon and this should not be a problem.

If you live in a hot climate where light clothes are standard, printing can be a problem, where the shape of your weapon shows through your clothes. Though some people worry unduly about this, it can be a problem with any type of concealed carry.

Durability

Last, but of course not least, look for a holster that will provide years of reliable service. With a Bianchi leather holster, of course, this will not be a problem – the people we spoke to for this review reported that their Bianchi leather holsters were still going strong after a decade or more of heavy use.


Bianchi Leather Holsters Reviews

1. Editor’s Choice: Bianchi Serpent Range

Bianchi 56 Serpent Holster for 1911This holster is actually the least traditional of the holsters that Bianchi make, but it manages to combine the heritage of leatherworking with a few novel features that really add value.

The first thing to mention, of course, is just how well these holsters fit the weapon they are paired with. You can feel and see the workmanship that has gone into each and every holster, which has been lovingly molded to fit your gun perfectly.

Whilst this is satisfying on its own, it also has great advantages in terms of weapon retention, holding your gun securely and ensuring that it will never feel loose or – even worse – fall out of the holster.

Pros:

  • First and foremost, the comfort on these holster is second to none, even when carrying a bulky weapon.
  • The reinforced thumb snap over the top of this holster is a great feature, and one that we wish more leather holsters included. It keeps your weapon extra secure when you are traveling, whilst also releasing quickly if you think you might need to draw soon.
  • The holster also has a slim profile, making it ideal for concealment. The shape of the leather belt loops also naturally breaks up the outline of your weapon, helping to reduce printing.

Cons:

  • As for disadvantages, in truth we can find very few. This holster works best in the 1911 government variant, but using it with other weapons is also possible.

2. Bianchi 111 Cyclone Holster

Bianchi 111 Cyclone HolsterIf you own a revolver, this is the leather holster to get. It looks amazing, and it is not hard to see why this kind of leather holster was the standard way to carry revolvers for so many years.

Especially when carrying a bulky weapon, having the thickness of gunleather to encase your weapon is great. With this holster, you can rest assured that no matter how far you travel with your weapon, your holster will keep it protected and safe.

Pros:

  • The holster can be used in two configurations, thanks to the two belt loops. It may be used in a cross draw configuration, or as a strong side carry. For bulky revolvers, these are the two most common styles of carry anyway, but it is nice to have the choice.
  • The thumb break is a nice feature – when engaged, it holds your revolver really well, and the gun never feels loose.
  • This Bianchi leather holster is also really well molded to every weapon we tried it with. This is especially critical if you have an expensive vintage gun, because your holster should be protecting your gun as much as you.

Cons:

  • This is one of the largest holsters available for your revolver, because it completely encases the gun. Whilst this has advantages in terms of safety, if you are into concealed carry it might be a little difficult with this holster.

3. Bianchi 100 Professional

Bianchi 100 ProfessionalA slightly more minimal holster than those we have reviewed above, this item packs all the workmanship and quality of Bianchi leather holsters into a more modern, compact design.

This has advantages in terms of concealment, so if you want to vintage look and feel of a Bianchi leather holster whilst still being able to carry concealed, this is the holster for you.

Pros:

  • The belt clip here is strong and secure, and felt very solid on the model we tested. Even when carrying quite bulky weapons in the holster, we did not feel that the holster was likely to fall off our belt.
  • The slightly enlarged leather on the side against your body adds to the comfort of this holster, keeping the cold sharp metal of your gun from rubbing against your side.

Cons:

  • This holster does not offer the flexibility of other concealed carry holsters, having no variable cant for instance, but you are very unlikely to find that in a leather holster anyway.

4. Bianchi 57 Remedy

Bianchi 57 Remedy HolsterThis holster is a good compromise between bulk and safety features. It is quite minimal in terms of design, having a slim profile and breaking up the outline of your gun whilst also completely encasing the trigger mechanism.

Pros:

  • The minimal design allows for a quick draw, even from the deepest concealment. With a lot of leather holsters, this is a concern, but here the removal of any additional obstacles around the top of the holster diminishes these worries.
  • The fit, on the handguns we tested this holster on, is pretty solid. If anything, these holsters fit a little too tightly around your pistol. Whilst this may make your draw a little slower, the positive side is that you can be damn sure that your pistol will not fall out of the holster.

Cons:

  • As for disadvantages – very few. If you own a Glock, this Bianchi leather holster is particularly good.

Conclusion

What you should look for in a Bianchi leather holster depends, to a great extent, on how you use it. All of the holsters we have reviewed today offer a good compromise between safety features, comfort, and concealment.

Our Pick
 Bianchi 56 Serpent Holster for 1911
Best Bianchi Leather HolsterBianchi Serpent Range

This holster is actually the least traditional of the holsters that Bianchi make, but it manages to combine the heritage of leatherworking with a few novel features that really add value.

Check Lowest Pricing

That said, we can heartily recommend the Bianchi Serpent Range of holsters. Available for a range of handguns, but pairing especially well with government 1911 style pistols, this range of holsters offers superior weapon retention. Incorporating the superior build quality of all Bianchi holsters, this is a great choice for any firearms enthusiast.

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