Minimalist IWB Holster: Raven Concealment VanGuard II - ITS Tactical

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Minimalist IWB Holster: Raven Concealment VanGuard II

By Bryan Black

While I’ve been a Sig guy since I first learned how to Shoot, I’ve also been recently carrying a Glock enough to warrant carry options while I figure out if I want to invest the money into converting all my holsters. This and a few other factors led me to the Raven Concealment VanGuard II Holster System and I haven’t looked back.

I’ve got a few more reviews coming down the pipe on other holster options I’ve been digging recently, but I wanted to take a few minutes to make a video to talk about what I feel to be a major advancement in holsters design and option out there for the end user.

When I first came across the VanGuard II, I had my reservations about it. Namely that it really wasn’t much of a holster in the traditional sense, but as I started to become familiar with it, my opinion quickly changed.


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  • Nice review Bryan. You’re right, it is injection molded. I liked mine too, my only reservation about the design is that it’s not great for live fire training (re-holstering is slow, exposed hot slide).

    • Thanks Brandon, I agree on slow re-holstering. That’s certainly a down side, but an understandable one.

  • Daniel Jaramillo

    You mentioned that this holster can be canted. Can you please explain and/or illustrate? (I checked Raven’s website and they also mention that it can be canted, but there is no explanation on how to do it.)

    • Hey Daniel, sure can. I didn’t go back and explain that like I wanted to in the video. The female portion of the snap can be loosened and the soft loop can be adjusted to the cant you desire, then retightened. The “strut” can’t actually be canted, it’s the soft loop that enables the cant. Hope that helps!

  • Eric S.

    I wear mine with a G26 and its by far the most comfortable holster I’ve ever used. I was also super skeptical but I couldn’t be happier.

  • Filbeck


    As always a great review. On a complete different subject, what type of long sleeve shirt is that? It looks sick! Take care and Happy Holidays to you and yours.


    • Alejandro Escobar

      I agree with Matt that shirt looks awesome and comfortable. Where is it from? Thanks for all your hard work

    • AmmoKan

      It looks like a Sekri level 2 grid fleece, part of the old PCU system. You can find them on ebay every now and then and in surplus stores around Fort Bragg and other cool guy bases.

  • johnyD

    You’ll shoot your eye out with that-

  • Misha

    How do you sit down with the weapon in that carry position? I spend a lot of time in the truck and I can’t imagine that would be very comfortable.

    In your opinion would it work at the 4 o’clock position?

    • Karyl Baker

      I wear my Glock 19 with the vg2 all the time. It is EXTREMELY comfortable while you’re driving. I wear it at about 1 o’clock and find that it sits between my legs perfectly plus it is in the proper position for drawing, if I should ever need to while in the car. I think it is preferable to wear it 1-2 o’clock rather than at 4, but the owners manual says that 4 would be okay.

  • DIesel

    I have mixed feelings. Love the size, love the movement to be able to adjust sitting or standing certain ways…I was pretty much sold until I saw how to reholster, and also like above comment, live training the gun being hot…Seems good for EDC but not so good for live practice. (Which I would want to do with my EDC holster)

  • TFA303

    An even more minimalist holster is the “Zack” (or Zacchaeus) by Dale Fricke. Same concept, and I’ve been very happy with mine. It also works well for my wife’s purse carry.

  • This seems quite similar to the MIC ( I’d like to see a comparison review of these two holsters.

  • Aaron K

    Off topic but I noticed the compass on your watchband. Did you finally find one that you’re happy with?

  • Josh B

    I carry everyday with the Zach from Dale Fricke. M&P 40 full size. I carry mostly in a backpack for work but its easily transfered to the belt for Apendix carry.
    Very similar holster but gives you a better (IMO) reholster as it is tethered by paracord and is a little better to manipulate.

    One question I have for those making comments about reholstering and training. I train with the Zach live fire. Yes the slide gets hot but not that hot. Wear an old shirt as I have burned a hole of two in some of mine. Its a minor issue and not worth worrying about. As far as reholstering…..slower is safer for you. “No gunfight has ever been won by a speed reholster” as I have read before. Take your time there is no need to hurry. In a gunfight you will not reholster “live” unless danger has passed anyway. I train for malfunctions and reloads and train to clear them with one hand. You stuff the gun back in your pants a pocket or under you leg and clear it or reload and move on. The versatility gained on the “front end” of the draw and presentation more than makes up for any problems that are due to not having a typical kydex holster.

  • Coy Abercrombie

    Hey, I was just wondering what outer shirt you were wearing during this video? Thanks.

  • Josh

    I have 2 vanguards. Vanguard 1 for my kahr pm9 and vanguard 2 for my g19.
    Mine came with cord so I don’t have any problems reholstering.
    By far the most comfortable iwb . I can cant/move the weapon as needed based on body position.
    Can’t say enough good things about raven and the vanguard!

  • Lance

    I have been using a vanguard for the glock for over two years now and it’s the only way to carry. I have a draw full of holsters I’d love to sale because of it. I recommend it to everyone.

  • ryan frank

    brian i to am new at glock carry have you reviewed the clipdraw for conceal carry

  • Spencedaddy

    just a quick thumbs up….

    just buy the holster…its going to be hard to not like it.I love it.

  • ben butler

    I use the VG1 with a glock 22 and cary at 5-6 o’clock. love it

  • Robert Hudson

    I have one and use it to carry my G36.

  • gunner308

    Anything similar that works with a SIG p290?

  • MC

    Does this holster system work with a Springfield XD9mm subcompact 3″ ? Thanks, mc

  • David

    Just a couple of questions. First I am currently in a police academy and they want us to buy a concealed holster in the near future. I have to carry a glock 17 gen 4 for a yr. So will this holster be good for the gun, and also, if I like to wear fitted/tight shirts, will this conceal the weapon enough with no worries?

    • Happened to stumble on this review today and saw your question was recent.

      I carry my glock 19 daily in a Dale Fricke Zach holster, basically the same at this holster, and it conceals great. I don’t like wearing big clothes and this holster allows me to conceal a Glock 19 without having to do so. Even in Under Armor work out shirts (the looser fitting kind, but still fitted) it conceals very well.

      If you have to conceal the full size, your looking at the best option in terms of concealability. Just cant the gun forward a bit to hide the longer grip.

    • David

      thanks for responding. It is a very hard decision to pick a holster. I wish I had the money to buy many of them and decide after trial use. When you say “your looking at the best option” do you mean the Dale fricke zach or the vanguard that is shown here?

    • Al Cohol

      I mean this type of holster. The kind that just strictly covers the trigger. If I was you I would go with the VG2, as it has the soft loop option, where the Dale Frick Zach is paracord only. I actually just bought the VG2 today as I was sick of the cord on my Zack holster and wanted to soft loop option. But other than that they are essentially the same. I own quite a few different holsters for my Glock 19: crossbreed supertuck, raven phantom, raven phantom light bearing, armordillo X-FER, and dale fricke zack. While the crossbreed is the most comfortable in terms of nothing jabs you, cause the leather backing, it also became very uncomfortable because the leather backing is so big. Not good for summer, in my opinion. For summer clothing when your in shorts and a t shirt, the zack holster has been the best for concealment, and is perfectly comfortable once you have it situated. I look forward to getting the VG2 and having the added stability from the soft loop.

  • Guest

    Why do people carry at 12 o’clock position?  You think in a high stress situation you want a gun pointing at your junk?

    • d77

      @Guest Faster access, both hands available to pull shirt out of the way and to pull gun out.  If you are in a seated position it also helps with access – especially when seated in a car and trying to get your gun from behind may be difficult.  It provides a little protection over your firearm – nobody to sneak up and potentially get your firearm from you unaware.  The gun isn’t going to go off without a finger on the trigger, and hopefully everyone practices drawing their firearm without their finger on the trigger right?!

    • Toltepeceno

      @Guest If you are going to be shooting yourself in a high stress situation you should probably rethink carrying in the first place.

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