The Bravo Concealment BCA 3.0 OWB Holster Review

The Bravo Concealment BCA 3.0 OWB Holster for the Heckler & Koch VP9.

About 3 years ago, the fine folk at Bravo Concealment approached me to review their original outside-the-waistband (OWB) holster for the Heckler & Koch VP9. Since then, their OWB holster has been a steadfast companion, securely keeping my VP9 pistol from flying off into parts unknown. A rugged chunk of Kydex, screws, and polymer, this holster, along with an inside-the-waistband variant that I occasionally use when the situation demands it, has proven it’s mettle as an essential piece of every day kit. Solid.

I was pleasantly surprised to see that recently, Bravo Concealment had released it’s line of Bravo Concealment Adaptive (BCA) 3.0 holsters and accessories. Almost on a whim, I requested a demo sample from the Bravo crew…

Already familiar with the 3.0 design and branding cues of the Bravo line from their dual magazine pouch, I was definitely interested in seeing just how the BCA 3.0 holster for the Heckler & Koch VP9 looked and performed. I only requested the OWB version, but much to my surprise, they sent over an IWB version as well - excellent.

Of course it goes without saying that these items were provided to me free of charge for review.

However, for reasons of brevity and conciseness, I’ll only touch on the OWB variant for this review.

The Bravo Concealment BCA 3.0 Holster In Real Life

A few days after my request for a review sample, a plain brown box arrived on my doorstep, containing the two aforementioned holsters. Once open, the items were in their trademark Bravo Concealment bags. One thing I like about Bravo is their attention to the brand. Marketing is important, after all.

Brownells

Branding And Design

Once out of it’s bag, I proceeded to examine the OWB holster in detail. What struck me most was the design evolution. The original Bravo Concealment OWB holster was and is a solid piece of kit, but unless you know, it could be a holster from any manufacturer.

Not so much with the 3.0 variant. Emblazoned with the Bravo Concealment wordmark down the side, and an impressive angular and somewhat faceted design, the BCA 3.0 OWB holster is unmistakably a Bravo Concealment product. You will not mistake it for anything else. The crew at Bravo obviously worked overtime to establish a firm foundation of design and branding, which exudes an increased confidence in the product. You’re not going to put your name on something unless you know it’s going to shine.

Truth be told, I love the way it looks. It has an almost F-117 Nighthawk quality to it, with a nod to a Lamborghini Countach. Of course, in black. Even the retention screws and “eye holes” are done up in a matte black. It’s sharp.

OK, it looks good and has an excellent attention to detail - but how does it perform in the field?

The old and the new.

The Usage Of The BCA 3.0 Holster

It’s really just one thing to fiddle with the Bravo Concealment BCA 3.0 holster in the confines of my home and take pretty pictures of it. However, it wouldn’t be much of a holster review if all I did was leave it on the shelf and occasionally look at it, right?

So, in the interests of actually providing a real review, I promptly strapped it on, holstered my Heckler & Koch VP9 9mm pistol in it, and took it out for a spin as my everyday carry holster for a little over a week.

Over the past few years, I shifted from mainly inside-the-waistband carry to outside-the-waistband. Not just for the hot summer months down here in the 305, but full time. My usual mode of dress can accommodate it - I dress loosely - so I figured why not?

So it wasn’t much of a psychological switch to transition to the BCA 3.0 holster.

Right away, the first thing I noticed was that the holster definitely exhibited a welcome characteristic of a more reassuring and positive retention. You have to place your firearm in the holster with some authority, and draw it in much the same manner. Pushing it in, you hear a dull thud or click when it’s in place. There’s no retention switch per se, but pushing it into place properly generates a sound, if that makes sense. It’s reassuring that something is being done.

Conversely, on the draw stroke, you have to grab and pull with some force to get your weapon to come out, which is a good thing. Again, you don’t want your gun flying out when moving around.

By the way, retention is adjustable, so you can make it tighter or looser depending on your preference. I will say that out of the box, no adjustment was needed. It worked just fine for me.

You can also adjust the desired angle of cant (tilt) depending on your technique and carry needs.

In terms of overall comfort, the holster is lighter than it’s older counterpart, but it is just as durable. The Kydex exhibits a smoother texture, and is more of a matte finish, and I didn’t feel any discomfort in my daily use.

Another nice touch is that there’s clearance for a threaded barrel - I use a Silencerco threaded barrel on my VP9, and clearance for suppressor height sights. On this specific model, red dot sights aren’t generally accommodated.
However, Bravo explicitly states on their website whether an RDS can or cannot be accommodated, so check before ordering.

To be fair I can see some red dots fitting - but check with Bravo first. I don’t rock a red dot on my VP9 so I can’t tell you with 100% certainty.

Along those lines, they call it the Bravo Concealment Adaptive, aka the BCA, for a reason. By adjusting the loops, and screws, you can adapt their holsters to your style of carry. You aren’t just getting a holster, you are getting a system. You don’t necessarily have to scrap the holster since you change mode of dress, or something along those lines - in most cases, all you need to do is make a few adjustments with a screwdriver, and you’re all set.

If you aren’t used to OWB carry, you’ll have to make some adjustments to your routines. Mode of dress factors in a little more, and little things like “what the hell do I do when I have to go to the bathroom?” come into play. Hint - just use your belt as an anchor of sorts. Don’t be a dope and take your gun off your belt.

Anyways…

Being a little lighter, and certainly more stylish, the Bravo Concealment BCA 3.0 OWB holster, in my opinion, is a worthy successor to the original Bravo OWB holsters - and at the price point, it’s in impulse buy territory. Whether it’s your first Bravo, or beyond - I can recommend this as a solid upgrade. Definitely another winner from Bravo.

Bravo, Bravo! - sorry, I had to.

Note: This holster won’t work with the VP40 or the VP9L.

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