Shoulder Holster Advice?

This is a discussion on Shoulder Holster Advice? within the Defensive Carry Holsters & Carry Options forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; I normally carry in an MTAC at 5 o'clock and love it - the MTAC will remain my main carry rig. That said, I am ...

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Thread: Shoulder Holster Advice?

  1. #1
    Member Array Goel's Avatar
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    Shoulder Holster Advice?

    I normally carry in an MTAC at 5 o'clock and love it - the MTAC will remain my main carry rig. That said, I am interested in getting a shoulder holster for traveling long distances by car on family vacations (TX CHL along w/ relatives in reciprocity states rules!). Of course winter is coming and I could use it for the short texas winter we have from Jan 15-Feb 15 .

    I was looking at the Fist vertical shoulder holster (see thumbnail), but have tried on others in the past and am not sure having never tried it on. I want one that fits my Kimber Pro with a 2-mag carrier on the opposite side. I am large size (6'2", 275 lbs) and also wonder if I would even like the shoulder holster long term. I don't want this to be a purchase I regret, so I want to do all the research I can up front.

    Thanks for any thoughts you can give me.
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    Last edited by Goel; August 10th, 2008 at 05:30 PM. Reason: spelling
    Kimber Pro CDP II

    "Though defensive violence will always be 'a sad necessity' in the eyes of men of principle, it would be still more unfortunate if wrongdoers should dominate just men." St. Augustine A.D. 354-430

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  3. #2
    VIP Member Array JimmyC4's Avatar
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    Nah, you won't regret buying a shoulder holster...it's something you just gotta own.

    I rarely use mine (Aker Flatsider with a Glock 26), but it's easy in winter to slip on, comfy, and I get that "Miami Vice feel" goin'!

    I suggest not spending a lot--mine was about $120 at Gall's. See: Aker® Flatsider XR7 Shoulder Rig - LP305 : Galls
    "It's a big gun when I carry it, it is also a big gun when I take it out” – Clint Smith

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    Member Array Wilky1121's Avatar
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    One bit of advice I can offer is to try a couple of different styles and definitely try to test out a vertical holster if you haven't before. Some people have a lot of trouble drawing from certain types of holsters and depending on your body type, a different kind of shoulder holster could lend itself to a faster, safer presentation.

    There are many individuals better educated in actual holster companies than I am, so I'll leave that bit of advice to the experts on the boards.
    People do not lack strength; they lack will. — Victor Hugo

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    Member Array Goel's Avatar
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    I am more interested in a vertical holster style because I do not want the muzzle to sweep the room as I turn my back on people. I carry in condition 1 and I know a horizontal rig should be safe - I just can't get over the idea of pointing a loaded gun at family/friends - even if it's safety is on.

    Can you change the angle on all horizontal rigs to give more of a downward angle to the holster?
    Kimber Pro CDP II

    "Though defensive violence will always be 'a sad necessity' in the eyes of men of principle, it would be still more unfortunate if wrongdoers should dominate just men." St. Augustine A.D. 354-430

  6. #5
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    Check out Sam Andrews "Springbreak" shoulder rig.
    Mark Craighead
    Owner/Founder
    CrossBreed Holsters LLC
    http://www.crossbreedholsters.com

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    You can adjust the cant of some horizontal holsters, a little, by adjusting the length of the straps. Being a large size person, I have a Galco horizontal "miami vice style" shoulder rig. I found the vertical holsters a little harder to draw and they tended to print more with my body shape. You might want to try some on before you decide.
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  8. #7
    Member Array Goel's Avatar
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    Thanks for all your advice.

    I also found a thread from last Jan 20th on shoulder holsters as well as the following review of them online.

    Shoulder Holster Review

    After reading the review above, I am interested in the Lou Alessi bodyguard, but I think I need to try some on before I purchase.
    Kimber Pro CDP II

    "Though defensive violence will always be 'a sad necessity' in the eyes of men of principle, it would be still more unfortunate if wrongdoers should dominate just men." St. Augustine A.D. 354-430

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    I have one...it's a vertical...I seldom use it...but on ocassions...get a bigger box...

    Stay armed...stay safe!
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    Senior Member Array dgg9's Avatar
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    Alessi Bodyguard -- accept no substitute. As soon as I bought one, my Miami Classic was up for sale within the week.

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    Member Array TwinCarry's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dgg9 View Post
    Alessi Bodyguard -- accept no substitute. As soon as I bought one, my Miami Classic was up for sale within the week.

    +1

    I've literally tried a dozen shoulder holsters and the Alessi Bodyguard is by far my favorite. Honestly though I have not had the chance to try the popular shoulder holster by Andrew called "The Monarch Rig" This forum has quite a number of members who swears by it. I guess I'll have to find out.
    But in the meantime, you can't go wrong with either a Bodyguard or the Guardian, heck you can't go wrong with any of Lou's line of holsters!

    Here's my 3 Shoulder holsters by Alessi:

    Bodyguard for my Walther PPK/S & PPK with the "Alessi Speed Break System":





















    Bodyguard for my J-Frame also with the "Alessi Speed Break System":








    Guardian for my J-Frame with the "Thumb BreaK" method:
    SA EMP ~ Sig P232s ~ Walther PP ~ Makarov ~ S&W 442 ~ Ruger LCP
    HK USP Compact ~ HK P2000sk ~ RIA Tactical ~ FN Hi-Power ~ Sig GSR C3

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    VIP Member Array havegunjoe's Avatar
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    Do you really fear the gun going off by itself?

    Quote Originally Posted by Goel View Post
    I am more interested in a vertical holster style because I do not want the muzzle to sweep the room as I turn my back on people. I carry in condition 1 and I know a horizontal rig should be safe - I just can't get over the idea of pointing a loaded gun at family/friends - even if it's safety is on.

    Can you change the angle on all horizontal rigs to give more of a downward angle to the holster?
    Sweeping to me is when the gun is in someone's hand and potentially their finger on the trigger. I have walked past a table full of guns at gun shows all pointed at me as I passed and never once did I feel the least bit uncomfortable about it. I have an Andrews Custom Leather Monarch Rig and it is great. You should try it.

    Andrews Custom Leather
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    Member Array onetuza's Avatar
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    Sorry for the dumb question, but does anybody use a shoulder holster over an undershirt but under an overshirt! For concealment that is, similar to something like the deep concealment shoulder holster at Deep Concealment Shoulder Holster
    Last edited by onetuza; August 11th, 2008 at 07:24 PM.

  14. #13
    Member Array Goel's Avatar
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    Website/Phone for Alessi Leather?

    Thanks for the pics TwinCarry! I have not been able to get on the onlyh website for Allessi that I have found [http://www.alessileather.com/]. I have emailed him today but have not yet received a reply - I don't really expect it soon. Does anyone have a good website or phone number for Alessi leather?

    I have looked into the monarch rig and have heard good things from one of our forum folks. However, I have not been able to get through to Andrews leather on the phone today either.
    Kimber Pro CDP II

    "Though defensive violence will always be 'a sad necessity' in the eyes of men of principle, it would be still more unfortunate if wrongdoers should dominate just men." St. Augustine A.D. 354-430

  15. #14
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    I wouldn't write of horizontal just yet. I know it's more of a mental safety thing than an actual safety thing but it's also a practical thing. Drawing from a vertical can be slower (especially if it's not tied down). The holster can ride up with the draw of the gun and you are left fighting your holster instead of engaging your target with your gun (a situation no one wants to be with). In my opinion, vertical shoulder holsters are for guns that are too long and will print out the back if carried horizontally and hunting revolvers. If one can go with a horizontal rig they should. Most importantly, your natural grip is to have the gun horizontal. That's the way it's most comfortable for you to grasp it and draw it. That's the way it should be if possible.

    I carry in a Galco Classic Light shoulder holster ..





    and not once have I given pause to the muzzle being pointed at anyone.

    1. Safety is on.

    2. Leather retention strap goes between the hammer and the firing pin.

    3. (and most importantly) no one and nothing is touching the trigger.

    I work in a gun store. There are at least 100 muzzles pointed at me a day. If I had a problem with that I would have gone insane months ago.

    Remember, guns don't fire by themselves. They need help.

    On another note, however, I agree that a good shoulder holster is just something to have. I have used mine a little more since I got pregnant and like the freedom it gives me to not have anything around my waist.

    The weight can get to you if you carry a heavy gun and all day in a car with it hanging from your shoulder can be like the Chinese proverb, "Even a chicken is heavy when carried far" especially when that chicken is an all steel gun hanging from your shoulders.

    Longest I have been in my shoulder rig is about 6 hours and by the end of that night my shoulders were ready to be rid of the weight. Then again, I have little ity bity shoulders, but that's beside the point.

    I've been considering getting another one but we'll see what happens after the baby's born and how I end up carrying him, a purse, a diaper bag, AND a gun.

  16. #15
    Member Array Goel's Avatar
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    Thanks, Limatunes! I guess I will get over the horizontal/muzzle thing. Perhaps that is the way to go. Having only worn a Miami classic once at a gun show, it is hard to know what would work best.

    I am not too concerned about weight with my big shoulders. I am more concerned with comfort, fit and stability.

    I am wondering about tie downs (gun side?, off side?). I know the Monarch has a lower backstrap instead of tie-downs. Any thoughts as to what works best?

    In regard to all the stuff that comes with a baby, my wife and I bought a good stroller and literally packed it all in everywhere we went with four little ones over time! At one point we had a double stroller. Going out to the store was like going camping with all we took.

    God bless on your and your little ones health.

    Goel
    Kimber Pro CDP II

    "Though defensive violence will always be 'a sad necessity' in the eyes of men of principle, it would be still more unfortunate if wrongdoers should dominate just men." St. Augustine A.D. 354-430

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