Blackhawk 3-Slot Leather Pancake Holster Review

Blackhawk 3-Slot Leather Pancake Holster Review
The Blackhawk 3-Slot Leather Pancake Holster is a proven belt-worn rig that's now available in a handsome Antique Brown. $74

As temperatures drop, I begin to reevaluate my concealed-­carry options. If I can properly hide the gun and holster, I prefer to fill my hand with a larger platform and increased capacity that is quick to access. The fastest concealed carry style for me to draw from is the appendix-­inside-­the-­waistband (AIWB) position using a Level 1 holster that features friction-­fit retention. (For AIWB holsters, I prefer a pistol featuring a manual safety.) Next, my fastest draws are a tossup between using a crossdraw holster and those worn over the hip and outside-­the-­waistband (OWB). When considering an OWB holster worn over or behind my hip, I can appreciate the security of a Level 2.

There are various ways to achieve Level 2, including push buttons activated by the trigger finger and thumb breaks unsnapped during the grip process. (I recommend thumb-­break holsters over those with a button near the trigger.) Level 2 holsters prevent a pistol from being launched up and out of the holster should a person sit down and catch the muzzle on the armrest of a chair, for example, but they also add a level of difficulty for a potential threat that’s intent on ambushing you and grabbing your gun.

Though I understand the virtues of an open-­slide OWB holster such as the Yaqui Slide, I prefer closed holsters with an open muzzle that protect the full length of a pistol. Blackhawk’s pancake holster fits the description.

Blackhawk 3-Slot Leather Pancake Holster

Most of us familiar with Blackhawk’s leather holsters know of the Italian-­made 3-­Slot Leather Pankcake Holster in black. The holster isn’t new, but it’s now available in two new brown colors: Antique Brown and Burnished Brown, which was a good-enough excuse for me to revisit the classic and comfortable pancake design for concealed carry.


The original pancake holster was developed decades ago by Roy Baker as a flat, two-­slot holster worn close the the body. The style is popular and tested. Blackhawk’s design is different in that it’s adaptable due to the three-­slot design that allows us to carry it with zero cant or a 45-­degree forward rake. Thinking outside the box, the 3-­slot design offers multiple carry angles and positions including strong-­side hip carry and crossdraw options.


Blackhawk’s approach to the pancake holster features a reinforced thumb break that allows quick access with minimal motion. (It cost me .4 seconds at the range versus an OWB leather pancake holster without a thumb break.)

Blackhawk’s holster is a two-­piece design with reinforcement stitching at the contours. The leather is premium and molded to curve around our waist structure. The belt slots pull it tight to the body and increase retention.

This is an ideal platform for larger handguns, but it also works with smaller guns. The triggerguard is fully covered for safety, yet cut for a full firing grip.

After 90 days of carry, I can easily recommend this holster. It’s been comfortable to wear and dependable to draw from.


Blackhawk 3-Slot Leather Pancake Specs

  • Materials: Leather (two pieces)
  • Carry Type: Outside the waistband (OWB)
  • Retention Type: Level 2; locking snap button and friction fit
  • Adjustability: Yes; cant and belt position
  • MSRP: $74
  • Handgun Fit: Semiautos and revolvers; model specific (SIG Sauer P320 tested)
  • Accessory Rail Accommodations: No
  • Positions to Carry: OWB, 3 to 5 o’clock (right or left hand); AOWB or Crossdraw OWB
  • Average Time to Attach: 45 seconds
  • Comfort Rating: 5/5
  • Concealment Clothing: Long jacket or loose-fit; untucked button-down shirt
  • Average Draw-to-Fire Time: 1.45 seconds*
  • Manufacturer: Blackhawk, 406-284-3840, blackhawk.com

*Draw-to-fire time is the average of five clean draws producing an A-zone hit on a stationary target positioned at 21 feet.

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Recommended Articles

See More Recommendations

Popular Videos

Gun Clips with Joe Mantegna - 94 WINCHESTER

Gun Clips with Joe Mantegna - 94 WINCHESTER

Joe Mantegna talks about the origins of the 94 Winchester rifle.

Armscor Semi-Auto Shotguns

Armscor Semi-Auto Shotguns

We look at the new shotguns from Armscor - the VR80 and the brand new bullpup VRBP100.

A New Season of G&A TV

A New Season of G&A TV

In this new season of Guns & Ammo TV, we introduce two new series and bring back a viewer favorite - Camera's Don't Lie. We look at long-range tech and see how to make shots previously thought impossible. Next we visit ISS Prop House in Hollywood.

Feeding Your Firearms with Aguila Ammunition

Feeding Your Firearms with Aguila Ammunition

A group of competitive shooters talk about new products from Aguila , the Aguila Cup, and everyone's favorite new guns launched at the 2019 SHOT show.

See More Popular Videos

Trending Articles

The story of a confederate sniper’s revenge and an exclusive look at his rifle. Historical

The Story of Civil War Sniper Jack Hinson and His Rifle

Kyle Lamb - January 12, 2018

The story of a confederate sniper’s revenge and an exclusive look at his rifle.

The Winchester .350 Legend straight-wall cartridge is ideally suited for hunting hogs and deer; here's everything you need to know to make it work for you. Rifle

.350 Legend Cartridge: Everything You Need to Know

Tom Beckstrand - April 02, 2019

The Winchester .350 Legend straight-wall cartridge is ideally suited for hunting hogs and...

Reminiscing on another great American lever action. Rifles

Review: Savage Model 99

Craig Boddington - February 11, 2019

Reminiscing on another great American lever action.

The Hornady 6.5 PRC (Precision Rifle Cartridge) is a Rifle

6.5 PRC - Magnumized 6.5 Creedmoor

Tom Beckstrand - August 01, 2018

The Hornady 6.5 PRC (Precision Rifle Cartridge) is a "magnumized" 6.5 Creedmoor. It offers...

See More Trending Articles

More Accessories

XS Sights' F8, RAM, and DXT2 Big Dot night sights are an upgrade over typical factory offerings, but which one is right for your gun? Accessories

XS Sights Review – F8, RAM and DXT2 Big Dot Night Sights

Brad Fitzpatrick - April 27, 2020

XS Sights' F8, RAM, and DXT2 Big Dot night sights are an upgrade over typical factory...

CrossBreed Holsters has updated their product listing to include fits that accommodate the new FN 503. Accessories

CrossBreed FN 503 Holsters and Mag Carriers – First Look

Guns & Ammo Staff - May 08, 2020

CrossBreed Holsters has updated their product listing to include fits that accommodate the new...

What tools should AR owners have on hand? To get you pointed in the right direction, here are three armorer's kits that each offer unique advantages when working on your AR-15 at home. Accessories

AR Tool Kits for At-Home Maintenance

John D. Oller - May 21, 2020

What tools should AR owners have on hand? To get you pointed in the right direction, here are...

In this episode “At The Range,” former U.S. Army Special Forces soldiers Tom Beckstrand and Matty Nelson review Geissele's URGI 5.56, the latest tool used by the U.S. Army Special Operations Command (USASOC). Accessories

Guns & Ammo TV: Geissele USASOC URGI 5.56

Guns & Ammo Staff - May 11, 2020

In this episode “At The Range,” former U.S. Army Special Forces soldiers Tom Beckstrand and...

See More Accessories

GET THE MAGAZINE Subscribe & Save

Digital Now Included!

SUBSCRIBE NOW

Give a Gift   |   Subscriber Services

PREVIEW THIS MONTH'S ISSUE

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Get Digital Access.

All Guns and Ammo subscribers now have digital access to their magazine content. This means you have the option to read your magazine on most popular phones and tablets.

To get started, click the link below to visit mymagnow.com and learn how to access your digital magazine.

Get Digital Access

Not a Subscriber?
Subscribe Now