Light reading while wondering about glovesI’m going to be picking up some new gloves soon. It’s been a little over a year since Matt last talked about shooting gloves.I thought I’d see if anyone had changed their mind or “upgraded” their opinion since then.

New developments, new technology, perhaps just a new design style, perhaps just an evolved understanding of what a good “tactical glove” might entail. Anyone aware of up-to-date trends/projections for the tactical glove market/industry? I’m actually looking for one style to wear on the range and in the field and a second pair just to wear when it’s cold – with the proviso they not be so bulky or cumbersome that I can’t draw and manipulate a concealed handgun if needed.

Let me know what you think.

FYI there is no hidden message in the book choices, they just happen to be the ones I’m (re)reading at the moment. Both should be required reading, in my opinion. Check out Catch-22 and No Second Place Winner if you haven’t already.

{ 23 comments… read them below or add one }

vdmsr August 12, 2013 at 11:42 am

SKD PIG glove are awesome for the summer – though in the winter they don’t really keep your hands that warm.

UA Blackout gloves come in two flavors, winter and summer, both awesome.

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straps August 12, 2013 at 12:46 pm

2 factors that make a huge difference are performance characteristics and fit. Gloves, like boots, could be made of space kevlar with unobtanium palms but if they weren't designed to fit your hand, no bueno. All the more true with shooting gloves, which MUST fit the length of your fingers and the width of your hand. I've had good luck–and bad with USGI aviator gloves, Hatch, and even Blackhawk (SOLAG).

My current unqualified favorite is the OR/Massif military line, specifically the Overlord (long and short) gloves. When I can find a decent price, I will buy as many as I can afford, on the assumption that GOOD gear is often not profitable enough to manufacture indefinitely, because bean counters will economize defining features out of products I like (a major hydration pack maker is a recent example of this–it's pretty sad when you can say you've seen knockoffs that are built better than authentic product).

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Albertus August 12, 2013 at 12:58 pm

I have tried pretty much all available currently on the market… and SpecOpShop Combat glove ended up being my choice. great dexterity and durability with cf knuckles and not too expensive. Openings for index finger and thumb. Not FR though…
http://www.specopshop.com/product_info.php?cPath=

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N703 August 12, 2013 at 1:17 pm

SKD Pigs feel good, but they wear too quickly. The holes in the bottom of the fingers wear through and widen fast and the local Haj tailor's had to sew them up numerous times. They fit great though and are great for shooting.

I currently wear OR Ironsight's and am a huge fan. They fit and feel great and I have zero issues manipulating pistol or rifle controls with them on.

You also can't go wrong with standard Mechanix either.

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J P August 12, 2013 at 1:24 pm

Best I've ever worn are Mechanix tactical series Original Coyote. No problems with any weapon, loading mags, tying boot laces, or any other work where I need tactile sensation in my fingertips. Maybe not the most durable (palms are suede leather, or a synthetic, not sure), but no less than standard Nomex flight gloves. Mine met their demise tossing a large chunk of Mk 80-series frag, that grabbed a finger as it left my hand.

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Arthur August 12, 2013 at 4:26 pm

SKD PIG without a doubt. They are not super heavy duty, but for short duration assignments and if you place a priority on dexterity and comfort, there is no other option. I can touch type on a laptop keyboard at nearly my usual 100 WPM with very few errors, and I’ve never met another glove (even my super thin Damascus driving gloves) that can do that. Lots of clever design too, the way different materials are used for ventilation and stretch in different areas. Just not for hard use.

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J T August 12, 2013 at 4:34 pm

Outdoor Research Flashpoint… durable, fit well, nomex.

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Olly August 12, 2013 at 5:26 pm

British army northern Ireland gloves. Fit well, made of leather with Kevlar slash resistant palms and cuffs. The leather is thin and tight so they give good feel. They are also water and windproof, but not insulated.

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Casey August 12, 2013 at 6:22 pm

I'm still a fan of the Camelbak Vent gloves for the ultimate in dexterity. I just wish they came in any color other than black. Also, the gloves tend to get stretched out pretty quickly and don't fit quite as closely as I'd like, but tossing them in the washer and dryer snugs them back up.

The SKD PIG gloves are my second favorite for dexterity, and are my preferred glove for all around use these days. I think they hold up better than would be expected of such a thin glove, and the features are great (venting, articulated joints, microfiber pad, etc.).

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Joshua August 12, 2013 at 6:43 pm

Honestly the new ACG's are really nice gloves. If you are a civilian you can pick them up on Ebay for around $20 a pair.

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Stefan S. August 12, 2013 at 9:07 pm

Remember when the only choice was Nomex flight gloves? Old Skool!

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Tom August 13, 2013 at 12:33 am

I hear that Oakley SI gloves are awesome, but I have no practical experience. I have used Wiley X, and they were great, but sized a bit small, the best pair I've had so far were a pair of 5.11's, but a almost a year of hard use took it's toll(The fingers have holes, the cuffs are separating, and the palms have holes too). I now have a pair of Blackhawk SOLAG's that so far measure up to my 5.11's. Time will tell how they hold up.

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Squirreltakular August 13, 2013 at 12:39 am

Oakley's and whatever the nomex camelbak ones we have in the Marines. Both gloves have stood up to tons of abuse. In contrast, I utterly destroyed a pair of SOLAGs Ina matter of days on one field op. Blackhawk sucks.

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J556 August 13, 2013 at 1:48 am

ive tried a lot of gloves but i find the camelbak FROG gloves the best overall. other gloves like mechanix and oakley are nice but id rather have the nomex than extra comfort because i want my gloves to protect my hands. if its not nomex i aint wearing it

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@gschoelles August 13, 2013 at 9:39 am

As a believer in train as you'll shoot, and not running around all the time wearing gloves, I have little use for them. If you are deployed and every time you go on mission, you are wearing gloves and train the same, than fine.

On the other hand, if I am going to wear gloves in an expected defensive proposition, they'll need to have Kevlar slice and Fire resistance.

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BubbaGlock August 13, 2013 at 2:35 pm

Check out Joe Rocket gloves at your local motorcycle shop. They are the same thing as "tactical" gloves but sell for much less.

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Robert August 13, 2013 at 3:18 pm

When in OIF in 2009 I needed a new set of gloves due to the typical avaition ones they issued fall apart after a little rough use. I purchased a set of the Camelback MAX Grip gloves. Now I purchased the heavier duty ones (which they don't make anymore but are similar to that link below), being a medic I knew I needed ones I could have great dexterity yet stronger enough to work around armored vehicles and rope/wire without any concerns. While they price is rather high these are the best pair of gloves I've bought to date for tactical use.

The gloves were very tight when I bought them but the leather has since loosened up and I barely know I'm wearing them when doing things. It has the long cuffs which are nice if you're worried about thermal protection to your wrists, most of the time I leave them folded up so the gloves are easier to get on and off.

Again while expensive these gloves have lasted me awhile, I only have to reinforce the loops in the gloves that hang from a caribener on my vest.

Here's a link to them. I'm sure you could get them cheaper if you shop around.
http://shop.camelbak.com/max-grip-sd-pilot-gloves

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TacticsMindset August 14, 2013 at 1:46 am

Outdoor Research Overlord Glove takes the cake in all around performance, and is offered in a variety of configurations. Extreme dexterity and level of feel and control with this glove while still being provide with protection in any situation. Weapons handling is flawless due to no extra bulk and seems in all the right places. On top of it all your hand will be able to breathe preventing any possible "sweating" through the glove. Over and over have proven supreme in the tactical environment.

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40MikeMike August 14, 2013 at 2:13 pm

SKD Pig Alphas are great and cheap. No problems with weapon manipulation. Much, much better than anything similarly priced. Don't know about winter. Just move south.

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liam August 14, 2013 at 4:13 pm

For summer mechanix gloves or oakley gloves….for winter….pilot gloves winter weight. or a pair of hatch kevlar gloves, just get one size larger!! it is old school and WORKS!!

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Oneoops31 August 16, 2013 at 3:09 am

I have been using Mechanix Wear since Ross at Mid South suggested them to back in 02 I just found my new favorite pair recently I got a hold of Bill Rogers shooting gloves. They are nice and snug fitting, light weight, and have good grip. They pretty durable so far I have found that I judge my range gloves on a few metrics one being how many magazines can I load before I wear the thumb out I am a few hundred into this pair and the thumbs are fine. Also they are very tactile I can reach into my pocket and retrieve small items with ease. They have good venting so you can wear them comfortably for long periods of time. Over for the price point they are reasonably inexpensive and durable. If you want to check them out go to http://www.holsterops.com. Just for histories sake Bill is the reason we have Kydex Holsters and just an out and out nice guy. If you get the chance for a light weight range and temperate operational glove you should check them out.

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Charlie W. August 19, 2013 at 7:43 am

A blow to the back of the hand can cause you to lose your grip and temporarily render your hand useless. Some padding or a hard shell in this area would be useful.

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walterj642 September 23, 2013 at 10:23 am

Under armor light weight "black out" gloves for summer. Under Armor makes an insulated model too. But, I find that I lose dexterity in winter gloves so I use summer gloves year round. Although I no longer work in the box. So whats good for me may not be advantages for someone working in Kunduz, Kabul, or gardez.

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