3" Smith and Wesson N Frame "Lew Horton"
This is a discussion on ATTN: Holstermakers / Nightguards? within the Defensive Carry Holsters & Carry Options forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; I know that we have quite a few of the premiere holster makers on this site, so I wanted to reach as many as I ...
I know that we have quite a few of the premiere holster makers on this site, so I wanted to reach as many as I could with this post.
While semi-autos far outnumber revolvers, when it come to self-defense sidearms, the revolver is enjoying somewhat of a resurgence in general, and is now spilling over into the self-defense arena. Aside from the J-frames and the like (Tauri[?], Ruger LCR and SP101), the most recent indication that this is happening is the Night Guard line of revolvers put out by S&W.
This has created a need for a revolver holster suited for the self-defense role, both an IWB and an OWB. There is scant little out there that fills the bill.
The NG series of revolvers is made up of K, L & N frames and are all equipped with 2.5” barrels (although some of the specs I’ve seen state 2.75” – not sure which, if not both, is correct). The K-frames should already exist as we’ve had 2.5” barreled K-frames for some time and the 19 snubbie is very popular. Likewise, to a somewhat lesser degree, the L-frames. Where things really breakdown is at the N-frame level.
There have been special distributor runs of 3” N-frames, and even a small run of 2” (1 7/8”) N-frames, but in the NG series alone we have the following: 310 (not yet out), 325, 327, 357 (the model – not the caliber) and 329, and nary a suitable holster.
I tend to favor IWB carry and my favorite holster is the Sparks VM2 (thanks Tony) – which lends itself well to revolver carry because the belt loops are “off” the cylinder, decreasing the profile and adding to the comfort. It seems that any IWB holster designed for a revolver – especially one as large as the N-frame should be designed with the attaching hardware (loops, clips etc.) off the gun itself. Even with the loops, or whatever, off the gun, that big N-frame cylinder may compromise comfort for IWB carry.
What I would like to see in an OWB holster is a pancake or wrap-around snap-loop design that carries the bulk of the gun above the beltline. This probably creates some stability issues, but the idea is to allow as little of the holster/gun to protrude below the bottom of the belt, thus making concealment easier. This should be easier to accomplish with a short barrel, like the NG’s. I’d also think that both stability and comfort would be enhanced by making the back (inboard) panel of the holster to fit the curvature of the body, while heavily boning only the front panel (outboard). I think the pancake type of construction lends itself better to revolver holsters than the Nelson design of one-piece folded leather with a belt slot behind the trigger guard and a belt tunnel on the back of the holster.
One last consideration for any of the NG series of revolvers – especially if they are to be carried in existing holster designs, is that they are equipped with the XS large dot front sights. These may be a problem with some holsters, dependent on whether they have a sight track or not and how they are configured.
I’d like to hear from holster makers if they have a current design that will work with the NG series (especially the N-frames), or if they have something in the works – either adapted from an existing design or brand new. From the membership here if they are currently carrying a NG in something. Pictures would be a huge plus. Thanks.
NRA Endowment Member
3" Smith and Wesson N Frame "Lew Horton"
Wow PK....Your work is getting to be stuff of legend. When you first started making them I thought you were doing it as a hobby and a minor side thing to you normal leather work, but I would put the appearance and design of your holsters up there with just about anybody. That is a very sharp looking rig for that N-Frame.
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PK, again. You work makes my jaw drop.
Like a Fine woman, your holsters are simply beautiful!!
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Rocky, I can only dream of getting one of your PK's. That's why we live, to dream! Nice rig.
If I'm repeating myself, or repeating myself differently, it's probably 'cause of the brain cells I've murdered and the selective memory caused by concussions, contusions and confusions. Oh yeah, and that one night in Dallas.
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--Guns? What guns?--
Thanks Guys, I really appreciate it.
Rocky you are a true craftsman, that's beautiful work.
For as the lightning comes from the east and flashes to the west, so also will the coming of the son of man be. Mathew 24:27