Skip to main content

Vantage Point on Gear: Särmä TST Shooter’s Belt

Särmä TST Shooter's Belt with a Ghost holster and my Armscor

My old and faithful CR-Speed IPSC belt started to deteriorate after 17 years of use (and occasional abuse), so I needed a new belt for my competitive shooting. After a quick check on what’s available, I decided to buy something that would allow me to have a single rig for both IPSC and its reservist oriented cousin SRA as well as potential 2-gun brutality matches. Being an ethical chap who likes to ride on a very high horse, I decided that I want something  that is local, or at least made in a country that has some basic respect for human rights and workers conditions.

I saw that Varusteleka had just released a Shooter’s Belt into their Särmä TST line of combat equipment. I’ve had some good experiences with their clothing, such as the merino hoodies and sweaters and with my wife absolutely loving their windproof jacket, I felt rather confident to try out their belt, that is designed in Finland and manufactured in Germany. The price isn’t cheap, but you can’t really compete with the far east made products with European labor these days.

Varusteleka has rather distinctive and very cool packages.

I placed the order without measuring my self. I have a well built waistline, so thought that going for the biggest size would be a safe bet. When the packet arrived 3 days later, I noticed that I should have paid a closer attention to their sizing guide as the minimum length of the belt is really that. So I had to sent it back to get the shorter size. Return process went smoothly and by the next Monday I got the correct size and proceeded to unpack it.

The initial impression of the belt could be summed up into one word: solid. You can actually grab one end of it and the rest will stay perfectly level. The workmanship is good, with all of the stitching being uniform and the molle channels are evenly cut. The velcro is very grippy, but the inner belt, that I also purchased removes without excessive force.

Stiff as an English upper lip

I built a quick test rig in order to do some dry practice runs in my garage and backyard. Fixing the ghost holster was easy as it screws on perfectly. There is absolutely no play between the hanger and the belt when the screws are set. Fixing a set of molle magazine pouches into the channels was a bit more tricky, but not much harder than putting the same pouches to a British issue battlebelt.

I dropped my slightly modified Armscor Hicap 1911 into the holster and did some practice draws. So far so good, no difference in time compared to the CR-Speed and the whole set up felt secure. A couple of Kassarda Drills later the setup was still secure and but I did remember that my molle mag pouches still suck and I really need to get better ones especially for pistol magazines.

I really need a model for reviews, but here is the rig on the author.

The only real gripe I have with the Särmä TST Shooter’s belt is that it’s a buckled design. While it’s sharper looking and more secure than the tradition velcro only IPSC belts, it’s also a bit more tricky to put on and get all of the holsters and pouches oriented properly. This is amplified if you have to slip the rig on while wearing a jacket etc. And even this complaint probably has more to with my 17 years of experience with a velcro only rig and a year from now I probably have forgotten the whole issue. And the buckle on this belt is a rock solid one and I really can't think of a better one for this kind of use.

So beyond actual long term durability, it looks like I got what I wanted: A solid European made belt to build a rig for my various dynamic shooting and reservist activity needs. They also ship worldwide with rather reasonable flat rate shipping costs.

Disclaimer: I have no affiliation with Varusteleka, they did not sponsor me or this review in anyway and all of the gear shown in the pictures was purchased with my own money.


  1. What do I say about your posts? I love them. I read them everyday and always wait for new ones. I am very happy because I have something interesting to read. Hope you can upload more and more
    Friv classic

  2. Yes, that's right. This is the new blob, i like it too. But i have one more want to show you all:


Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Death from above – Russian ad hoc top attack defenses

T-72B3 tanks with crude top armor cages The recent Russian tank upgrade programs and the ever slower moving T-14 Armata saga, have all had significant portion of the efforts put into improving the survivability of the tank and its crew. Both static and explosive reactive armor (ERA) have been upgraded and small amount of the latest T-90M and T-72B3 tanks have active protection systems that may be able to defeat most of the anti-tank missiles and slower moving HEAT shells. Environmentally friendly T-90M While these programs have put some emphasis on the armor on the top of the turret, the main focus has been in the sides and the front of the hull and turret. Additional ERA elements have been mounted on the skirts of the vehicles and slat-cage type standoff armor has been attached into the rear sides of the turrets and hulls. These modifications however have very little effect on direct top attacks by modern anti-tank missiles such as the American Javelin, that is also in the

Quick guide to identifying the Russian tanks Part 1: main platforms and T-72 variants

As most of the western nations have reduced their inventories to a few or mostly one type of main battle tank model in their active inventories, the myriad of tank platforms and distinct versions employed by the Russian armed forces may feel overwhelming. Here is a quick guide to identifying Russian MBTs. When you come across an image (or the actual thing), follow the steps to identify it properly. Family of the tank Russian Armed Forces currently operates, or at least storage, the following tank platforms/families: -           T-55 (<2000 in storage) -           T-62 (2000 in storage) -           T-64 (2000 in storage) -           T-72 (2000 active duty, 8000 in storage) -           T-80 (2000 active duty, 5000 in storage) -           T-90 (350 active duty, 600  in storage) -           T-14 (20 in field testing) So how can you identify what type of a tank are you looking at? There are two features that can be used to distingu

The Hammer and the Sickle - Potential Russian Pincer-Offensive

For the past weeks the social media has been filled with sightings of Russian troops moving towards the regions bordering Ukraine. The buildup was initially called an exercise, but in the most recent press releases Kremlin has been rather clear that the troops have been deployed there as an operational deployment, if Russia feels a need to act upon any real or imaginary escalation in Donbass. The troops will stay in the region as long as President Putin sees it necessary. Russia Serna-Class landing crafts of the Caspian flotilla The initial buildup was focused on occupied Crimea that has so far received an additional VDV airborne regiment, multiple mechanized battalion tactical groups and heavy artillery units equipped with at least the enormous 240mm 2S4 Tulpan mortars.  Additional trains and convoys have been spotted in Rostov, Krasnodar and Voronezh regions. The Russian controlled Belarusian military has also been alerted and multiple, very Russian looking units are operating in the