Are custom holsters worth the wait and the price?

This is a discussion on Are custom holsters worth the wait and the price? within the Defensive Carry Holsters & Carry Options forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; Originally posted by jdsumner About a year later, Gary asked me to test drive a prototype holster called the MaxCon VI-essentially a V with a ...

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Thread: Are custom holsters worth the wait and the price?

  1. #16
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    Originally posted by jdsumner
    About a year later, Gary asked me to test drive a prototype holster called the MaxCon VI-essentially a V with a steel band reinforcing the mouth.
    I think I asked you this before, but did he continue producing the MaxCon VI? It\'s not on his website. I just love leather better than plastic for IWB, my preferred method of carry. I wouldn\'t mind trying one. I assume from your comments you also bought his Mag-Flash pouch along with the belt and holster. I might have to spread that purchase out a bit. The holster is pretty reasonably priced, the rest might have to wait until after all of the Christmas bills are history

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  3. #17
    Senior Member Array jdsumner's Avatar
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    Yeah, he still does the VI, but due to its cost, and time to make, its a true custom. He tries to keep some V\'s on hand in order to keep delivery times down. But I also know he was tagged pretty good by these hurricanes.
    I noticed Valkman on this forum, maybe he will add his input. Seventhsword is using a MaxCon V if I remember right.

    Dan

  4. #18
    Senior Member Array jdsumner's Avatar
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    Hey Bumper, I didnt see the Product Review forum till just now:(.
    If more appropriate, put this review down there.

    Dan

  5. #19
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    I second the HBE leatherworks holsters. I also second the rafterSgunleather. I have holsters from both. I have the tuckable pro from HBE and the OWB from raferS. Both are great holsters.

    Tm

  6. #20
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    Dan, great review :kay:

    ~A

  7. #21
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    Originally posted by jdsumner
    Hey Bumper, I didnt see the Product Review forum till just now:(.
    If more appropriate, put this review down there.

    Dan
    Dan, Good review. Try cutting and pasting your post into a post in a topic in the Forum Office and I will move it. I can't move individual posts (I have to move the whole thread) and if I put it in a post under my name new members won't know who to ask questions about it :)

  8. #22
    Member Array hummel's Avatar
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    i went to www.gunnersalley.com there i chose a iwb holster from fist model #1...it was custom made to fit my xd 9 sud for about $40....the time was about 2-3 weeks and the quality and fit was perfect...now i kinda want the iwb with the forward cant....but check it out they carry 3 other makers as well....

  9. #23
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    What is common wait time for Milt Sparks VM2???

    ~A

  10. #24
    Senior Member Array jdsumner's Avatar
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    AP,
    best bet is to give them a call. Always professional when they answere the phone.

    Dan

  11. #25
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    Thanks for the advice Dan. Time to go to their URL.

    ~A

  12. #26
    Senior Member Array jdsumner's Avatar
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    Bumper, brother,
    I\'m lucky to sign onto the same site twice:D:D. Gimme some idea how to do that and I\'ll try.

    Dan

  13. #27
    Member Array Gary Brommeland's Avatar
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    Hey Guys!

    Thanks for letting me come aboard! The thing to remember about buying a holster is this - you will pay now, or pay later.

    Most shooters have a \"holster graveyard\" in a box someplace - all the stuff that they\'ve tried over the years that just didn\'t cut it. When you add up what you\'ve spent for that box full of cheapie holsters, you\'ll soon realize that it would have been cheaper to buy a decent one to begin with.

    However, there is a time in which it (buying a cheapie) can cost you much, much more than money - that is if you ever actually need it to perform in a self defense situation. Factory holsters are mass produced by unskilled or semi-skilled labor. Do you want to trust your life to the work of a guy that might well have never even fired a handgun?

    Guys who run small, custom holster shops tend to be really anal retentive types - ultra perfectionists that eat, breath, sleep and live holsters.

    The other consideration is this - if you walk into a gun shop and buy brand X factory holster for $79.95, the shop owner probably paid something like $39 for it - from a distributor that paid the factory something like $30 for it. The result is that you just spent 80 bucks for a $30 holster! If you buy directly from a small custom guy, you get an 80 dollar holster for your 80 bucks. Common sense will dictate that in an industry as competitive as the holster business is, an 80 dollar holster is going to be way, way better designed and constructed than a $30 one can possibly be.

    Also, shop around a bit when buying custom leather . There are several superb makers out there, and all of them offer different stuff. What works perfectly for one person, will be not necessarily be suitable for another. People are all different.

    Lou Alessi, Josh Bulman, Matt Del Fatti and Sparks all make great gear, as do I. (There are probably others that are just as good, but I have personally used these guys'work and can vouch for it.)

    I hope this helps. Good luck!

  14. #28
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    Originally posted by Gary Brommeland
    Hey Guys!

    Thanks for letting me come aboard! The thing to remember about buying a holster is this - you will pay now, or pay later.
    Hey, Gary, welcome to the forum. I, too, have a graveyard of holsters, most of which I don\'t ever use. I expect most people buy factory made leather because they can see them up close before they buy. And with me, new holsters tend to be somewhat of a compulsive purchase, particularly when you are looking for something a wee bit better than what you have. That being said, if I keep buying holsters, my wife is going to throw me out of the house. For the last month or so I have been researching just about every custom IWB holster I come across trying to figure out what holster is likely to finally satisfy me.

    From what I have seen so far, most of the custom work, including yours, looks very good, but what makes one comfortable? For me, I know I want something of leather, concealable, durable, with features that make it easy on/off without removing my belt. Since I carry a full size 1911 it must also be able to be canted correctly to make the grip conceal. I have several (and have had several more) that have all of the above features but they are not comfortable wearing for long periods of time. What have I left out that most affects comfort?

  15. #29
    Member Array Gary Brommeland's Avatar
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    Hey Bumper!

    Comfort is really based more on the design, rather than the construction/materials. A properly designed IWB will not bear on nerves, inhibit blood flow or bind the movement of muscle layers. (If you\'ve ever attended an autopsy, or just dressed out a deer, you have probably noticed that muscles are composed of criss-crossed layers of tissue. These layers glide across one another when you move.) It takes a working knowledge, IMO, of anatomy and physiology to properly design a holster, particularly an IWB.

    The holster is the interface between a block of steel and the human body, and it must serve both equally well in order to give you the performance that you desire. This requiress a design that is not only ergonomically correct, but tactically sound as well. (Man, I am starting to hate the word \"tactical\" - dog crap can be called tactical nowadays if it is black!) The only way to design a holster with all these considerations in mind is for the maker to take a few defensive handgun courses, practice their butt off and then carry a firearm all day, every day so that all the little things that you would never have even thought of as being a potential problem, can be recognized and resolved.

    As far as construction of the holster goes, look for quality materials. It MUST be made from vegetable tanned leather that is cut from either \"Bend\" or \"Shoulder\" hides. Either is acceptable for holster construction, but they are somewhat different in their characteristics. Shoulder leather (the only good shoulder leather that I\'ve ever met in 20+ years comes from Westfield Tanneries) is very, very firm when it molds up, and is great for belt holsters (OWB). It also works well for most other applications. Bend leather (Hermann Oak and Westfield Tanneries both make a great Bend) also tends to mold up very firmly, but is a bit more flexible in the finished product. That is what I use for IWB\'s.
    Stitching must be done on a lock stitch machine (Campbell, Randall, Union Lock type machine) and be tight, even and pulled flush with or below the surface of the leather. It MUST be either bonded nylon or bonded polyester of AT LEAST #277 size, and this is an absolute bare minimum. I use #346, which is nearly twice that diameter. The finish should be an acrylic, and all hardware should be solid brass or plated solid brass, except on the D rings on shoulder rigs where steel is used for extra strength.

    The best way for the average guy to be able to pick a decent holster is by name recognition - the guys that I mentioned in my last post all meet the requrements that I\'ve spelled out here. Our professional reputations (and therefore our ability to feed our families) all depend upon making a solid, good quality product and backing it up with great service. (BTW, in this business, great service rarely means that you\'ll get your holster quickly. It is VERY time consuming to make a world class holster - most of which is done by hand. You\'ll have to wait not only for your holster to be made, but for the hundreds of guys who are ahead of you in line to have their holsters made first. ) Great service means that the maker will take the time to talk to you as long as necessary to help you decide upon a design that will best suit your needs. It also means that he will stand behind his work 100%, and be there if a service issue arrises.

    The way I do all of the above is simple - I offer a lifetime guarantee of my work. If it screws up, I repair/replace it (unless it was abused or just plain worn out). No pro-rate, no BS.

    \'Sorry for such a lengthly post. My customers will tell you that I like to talk to \'em!:D ) Sometimes I may give you more of an answer than you wanted, but I want to make sure that all of my customers (as well as potential customers) all feel as though I have taken the time to treat them right. Thanks for letting me rant.

  16. #30
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    Ok I am in awe. To think he took the time to come in here and say all that he did is pretty amazing. I will definitely give him a call.

    ~A

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