The most important piece of your everyday carry (EDC) setup is your belt. You could argue with me that the gun or the holster are more important, but you better be prepared to fight me on that!
To be clear: yes, your gun and the holster of your choice are vital to EDC, but without a good belt backing those items up, everything else can fall apart. (Or, to the floor.)
Your gun is heavy. Even if you carry a polymer micro pistol and one spare, single-stack magazine, it’s still extra weight that a normal belt isn’t designed to handle. That’s why you need a purpose-built belt.
Enter the EDC Rogue from Nexbelt.
Making a Good Belt
Like most belts designed for EDC, the Nexbelt possesses a rigidity that you don’t find in a regular belt. For some manufacturers, this is accomplished by using high quality, thick cuts of leather.
The EDC Rogue uses high quality leather, too, but it’s what you don’t see that makes the difference. Nexbelt’s products are lined with a super strong red nylon strip that they have designed and redesigned repeatedly over the past seven years to create a proven product that resists wearing and cracking.
In addition to providing rigidity to the belt, that nylon strip also performs another essential function of any belt: retention. That’s because the EDC Rogue is a ratchet belt, designed without any holes for a buckle to hook through.
I’ll be the first to admit that I was skeptical about trusting my EDC to this retention system. I’ve had ratchet belts before that were cheap and gimmicky. They weren’t well made. The teeth wore out and the plastic material cracked and broke after being used just a few times.
OK, so Nexbelt uses a high quality nylon liner and teeth. What about the buckle? It doesn’t matter if the teeth stay intact if the buckle doesn’t hold fast, right? They addressed that issue, too. Instead of using pins in the buckle, Nexbelt uses stainless steel allen head screws to create a unique, patent-pending design for extra durability.
The key feature and appeal of any ratchet belt is its infinite adjustability. You don’t have to poke new holes in the leather if you gain or lose a few pounds. Just adjust the ratchet setting and you’re good to go.
Beyond issues of packing on pounds during the holidays, those of us who practice EDC know the hassles that can come along with it. Depending on your specific setup, you might find yourself needing different holes based on the amount of gear you’re carrying and its specific distribution on your waistline.
With a traditional belt, this can sometimes lead to a compromise. You can choose from a belt hole that is a bit too loose and spend the day readjusting from time to time, or you can choose a belt hole that is a bit too tight and spend the day feeling like you’ve crammed ten pounds of potatoes into a five pound bag.
Your third option is to make another hole in your belt between two existing ones. On some belts, space constraints between holes prevent this from being an option. On belts that you can punch a new hole, you may end up worrying that the adjustment you made will eventually compromise the integrity of the belt.
A ratchet belt eliminates these issues entirely. Carrying a full-size gun and two spare mags today? No problem – adjust the belt a little looser. Packing a snubnose revolver with extra ammo in a pocket speedstrip? Say no more – just ratchet the belt a little tighter.
The Gray Man
Of course, one of the key principles of EDC is to go unnoticed. If you’re using one of the adjustable nylon belts that range officers or shooting instructors often utilize, but you’re wearing it with a pair of dress pants, some people will pick up on the fashion discrepancy.
That’s what’s really nice about the EDC Rogue. Available in black or brown, it’s a traditional-looking leather belt that is right at home with a pair of jeans or more formal office attire.
Customizing Your Belt
Nexbelt’s EDC Rogue is built to accommodate most people. In the package is an uncut belt that is 50” long with one-inch increments listed on the back. Find your size on the back of the belt and then add four inches. Using a sharp pair of scissors, cut the belt to that length.
Insert the cut end into the buckle and shut it firmly so that the internal teeth dig into the belt.
Now try it on and see if it fits properly. If it’s too long, remove the belt, trim it, and try again. Once you have it set to the proper length, shut the belt and insert the backup set screws which come prepared with blue Loctite already on the threads. This provides an extra level of protection and retention to your belt.
I’ve been wearing my EDC Rogue every day for the past month. Some days I use it with an IWB setup; other days, it’s OWB. Either way, the belt performs great. The teeth and buckle hold strong and not once have I felt like I was losing retention throughout the day.
Regardless of my setup or activities, the belt easily adjusts to where I need it – with or without my gun – very discreetly. No more having to undo the belt and find a new hole, which is kind of awkward in public. It’s really nice being able to give a quick click or two, in or out, to readjust my situation as needed without drawing attention to myself.
Give It A Try!
If you’re in the market for a new gun belt, I’d highly recommend looking into the EDC Rogue from Nexbelt. They offer a one year warranty and a 30-day return policy. Even if you’ve never used a ratchet belt before and are a bit sceptical, I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised if you give it a fair shake.
MSRP for the Nexbelt EDC Rogue is $62.99. Order yours at www.nexbelt.com.