A Conversation with Kevin Manley

This is a discussion on A Conversation with Kevin Manley within the Defensive Carry Holsters & Carry Options forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; At the end of September, K-Man of K&D Holsters posted this: http://www.combatcarry.com/vbulletin...647#post204647 (scroll down) and I finally called him today. I have been looking for ...

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Thread: A Conversation with Kevin Manley

  1. #1
    Member Array LTPhoon's Avatar
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    A Conversation with Kevin Manley

    At the end of September, K-Man of K&D Holsters posted this: http://www.combatcarry.com/vbulletin...647#post204647
    (scroll down) and I finally called him today. I have been looking for a holster for my P239 and have had my eye on that pretty holster since he posted it. He talked to me for 45 minutes or so and I listened even as the Finance Committee tried to call three times. I continue to be amazed at how much time the craftsmen and online storekeepers I have talked to over time...Jim Speidel the Beltman, Sam Andrews, Matt Del Fatti, Mitch Rosen, Jerry at Ordnance Outsellers and others...are willing to devote to informing complete strangers about what they do and why they do it and the love and passion, even, they bring to their craft.

    The basic holster can be had for $55 in 8-10 weeks with no laser engraving and another 2 weeks and $30 for the engraved artwork. Although he says the lighter shades work best, darker colors can be done with a lighter application of color in the desired area and then sealed. A slide guard can be added for $5. If you prefer a thumbsnap instead, add $7.50. In that particular design, the frontpiece is about 20 square inches and can be veneered with alligator for $2 an inch for a total of $40. A mag carrier is $30 and you can add a 1.5 " tapered belt with Chicago screws and a leather and metal beltkeeper for $50. This is all done with premium materials selected for their durability and appearance such as leather from the spine and shoulders of selected Hermann Oak hides, acrylic dyes and sealers from Angela's and so on. I got a good, concise education in all of this because any question I asked was bracketed by more information pertaining to either side of the issue. A real Neopolitan of Knowledge, so to speak, and just as good.

    While he was at it, he explained why Matt Del Fatti has a waiting list crowding two years now. Matt is not as concerned with how many holsters he makes in a given period of time but is concerned about who they are for. Most people turn over a gun in a year or two and won't have it any more by the time their holster arrives. Matt's holsters are an heirloom item meant for people who treasure their Dad's Government Model or their favorite long-time retired agency- issue pistol or even a new gun they mean to keep over the long term and this is reflected in the wait time. Kevin also thinks that Matt is the finest holstermaker in all the business. He holds Josh Bulman and Mark Garrity in that lofty company as well.

    When I told the Finance Committee why I didn't answer the phone the first three times she called, and mentioned what a clever deal I'm gonna make for myself, she felt better. I think that anybody that wants a good education in custom holster buying for not as much as you can spend someplace else can't go wrong by contacting Kevin at www.kdholsters.com. If I got anything wrong, Kevin, I'm sorry but I was having such a good time! Thanks again!

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  3. #2
    Member Array K-Man's Avatar
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    I enjoyed the opportunity to meet/talk with you as well. In addition to those mentioned above, Lou Alessi and the folks at Milt Sparks are at the top of my list as being some of the best in the business. There are many others who are top quality craftsmen.

    Many of the holster makers are willing to discuss the various aspects of the process with a customer. It allows you to understand how things work and what is involved. I think for most customers it is an eye-opener, and at the same time provides a basis of information for them to digest as they look/search for a holster.

    Feel free to contact me any time.

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    VIP Member Array ccw9mm's Avatar
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    Ditto. Just got my K&D Laredo Defender for the CZ P01, Pocket Defender Plus for the Keltec P3AT, and a couple of mag carriers. The quality of the units that just arrived is very good. Solid workmanship. Tough seams. Fine boning. All for a very good price and decent turnaround time. It's hard to not appreciate excellence when you see it.
    Last edited by ccw9mm; November 18th, 2006 at 07:00 AM.
    Your best weapon is your brain. Don't leave home without it.
    Thoughts: Justifiable self defense (A.O.J.).
    Explain: How does disarming victims reduce the number of victims?
    Reason over Force: The Gun is Civilization (Marko Kloos).
    NRA, GOA, OFF, ACLDN.

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    One simple factoid - seems to me, top notch holster making equates to personalities who are class acts.

    The two seem by default to go together. We are lucky.
    Chris - P95
    NRA Certified Instructor & NRA Life Member.

    "To own a gun and assume that you are armed
    is like owning a piano and assuming that you are a musician!."


    http://www.rkba-2a.com/ - a portal for 2A links, articles and some videos.

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    Senior Member Array Kevin's Avatar
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    Not only is Kevin an excellent holster maker - he is a great guy

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    Member Array LTPhoon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kevin View Post
    Not only is Kevin an excellent holster maker - he is a great guy
    Yeah, your ears must have been burning because we were talking about you...

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    Senior Member Array Kevin's Avatar
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    thats scary!! What about?

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    Member Array LTPhoon's Avatar
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    Well, about your devotion to OSU, Kevin's fine and thoughtfully made custom holsters especially for you and your work of art pistols. He made the point during our conversation how he particularly enjoyed making artform and function fit together well and I promptly brought your situation up as an example...

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    Senior Member Array Kevin's Avatar
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    I need to think of something to challenge him!! Something awful gaudy and orange!

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    Member Array LTPhoon's Avatar
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    I'm glad you said it before I could! Could you do us all a favor and find those pictures of your holster and pistol ensemble that you posted one time? So we can all see what OSUmania can cause if left untreated? Heh!

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    Senior Member Array AirForceShooter's Avatar
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    Whenever anybody sees the holster Kevin made for me they sort of drool. If you're into guns even a little you can spot a custom holster a mile away.
    One of these days I'm going to invade Kevin's place. I'm not far from him. Even if he is a former squid. I won't hold that against him.

    AFS
    Gun control is hitting what you aim at

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    VIP Member Array ccw9mm's Avatar
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    Hey, AFS ... even flyboys need a place to land. Careful, there. :)

    Now, where's the talcum powder to cut the last minor squeak on the new rig. Ah, there it is. Wheeeee! Breaking in new gear is always so much fun.
    Your best weapon is your brain. Don't leave home without it.
    Thoughts: Justifiable self defense (A.O.J.).
    Explain: How does disarming victims reduce the number of victims?
    Reason over Force: The Gun is Civilization (Marko Kloos).
    NRA, GOA, OFF, ACLDN.

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    Senior Member Array ront's Avatar
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    I also have had the opportunity to spend some time with Kevin on the phone. It is very obvious that he really enjoys what he does and is very happy to talk about it with you. I would love to go and visit him in person! He seems like a very nice guy!! He is making me a holster for my little Kel Tec P3AT and I can see an order for something for my Glock G27 someday also.

    Ron
    Shine on...
    S&W M&P 9c
    S&W 9 Shield
    Taurus Raging Bull .454 Casull
    S&W M&P15 Sport;
    Mossberg 590A1

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    Distinguished Member Array AnimalKracker's Avatar
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    And one thing to remember that while these guys are talking to you about their products, they are getting a "feel" as to just what holster is going to work for you best and making sure that they have all the little details down so everyone is happy.

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    I have been thinking about getting a holster for my CZ P01 for several weeks now. Today I took the plunge and ordered from Kevin a belt, Laredo Defender, and two mag holders - all in mahogany. I chose the Laredo over the Eagle and many other belt slide holsters because it has snaps, and it is a fine looking piece of leather. I think the ease of using snaps will make it much more likely that I actually put the holster on when I go out, as opposed to just grabbing my pocket gun. My limited experience with threading gun belts through holster slots has not been much fun. I hope the snaps work better for me.

    Kevin was a pleasure to chat with on the phone. Thanks to all who have posted detailed reviews and photos of Kevin's products. That info was very helpful to me in making a choice.

    There is one product that I hope Kevin will consider making in the future: a canted, belt slide double mag carrier for double stack mags. He has canted holders, belt slide ones, and double ones but not one that puts all the adjectives together. I think such a thing might be nice to have for IDPA, though I'll certainly get by with two clip-on singles.

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