I’ve never been one to wear gloves when I shoot. I do a lot of work with my hands. I have a decent set of well cultivated callouses. I really like the feel of cold steel in my hand. Sometimes I end up with a mild burn, or I get pinched. No big deal. But I’m coming around to the idea.
My assistant, Jacob, has worn gloves as long as I’ve known him. He typically wears a pair of the Mechanix Originals. But we’re in Virginia, and it can get really hot here. The heat would be easier to deal with if it wasn’t so humid. Jacob’s gloves typically disappear in late spring, and won’t show back up until fall.
Get some Vents
The palms of these gloves are made of a perforated synthetic leather. They have an almost suede-like feel to them. The holes are large enough to let some air circulate, but not so large that dirt and junk can easily work its way in. The grip from the faux leather is really quite good.
The backs of these gloves are made from mesh. It is tight enough that they look like gloves, but not so tightly woven that you look like you’re wearing a pair of fishnet backed bicycle gloves. The air moves decently.
Each of the thumbs has a micro-fleece sweat panel to help keep your grip dry, and the hook and loop closure at the wrist helps keep them securely in place.
They are only available in black right now, but that’s a decent choice. It goes well with most tactical guns. It looks good against the dark hues of a good phosphate finish, and the deep blue of 1911 slide.
The fingers are all made. The index finger on each glove is stitched differently than the other three fingers. Because these gloves are meant to increase your control of your firearm, the first finger is made be wrapping more material around to the top of the nail. This is a bit complex to describe (in fact, I bet there’s a handy piece of industry jargon that describes it perfectly). It is easier to appreciate. The index finger doesn’t have a rigid seam to impede dexterity. The result is a gloved finger that is almost as capable as one without any protection.
We were on the range for five hours the day we tested the Original Vent Gloves, and it was 98 most of the afternoon.
We were putting a couple of shotguns through their paces, and breaking in an AR from Enfield. The evaluations included some heavy work, but nothing like what could be faced by any LEO, or soldier. And that’s what these gloves are really for. It is nice that Jacob didn’t get callouses on his dainty hands from wracking the slide on his old 870, but really…. We have it stupid easy.
These gloves are meant to take abuse. They’re meant to protect your hands from basic wear and tear, and they’re designed to allow for a maximum amount of dexterity. That is a delicate balancing act. You want a glove that will protect your hand if it should brush the smoking hot barrel of an Enfield AR, but you also want to feel the trigger on the tip of your index finger. And that finger can’t slip inside a sweaty piece of slack leather. It has to fit. It has to fit exactly right.
I don’t know what the Vent gloves feel like inside. But it has to be good. The true test of how well something like this works is how soon you forget it is there. And Jacob pulled on the gloves and spent the next few hours running guns without a hitch. And if you do get them sweaty and dirty, they are machine washable.
Not bad for $27.95. I’m not going to tell you you have to have a different pair of gloves for each of the four seasons, but it’s nice to know there’s one available that can take the heat.