Here's a list of questions
that we frequently get from our website visitors. Simply click on the
question to get the complete answer.
do I place an order?
note on inquiring about a pending order
colors are your holsters available in?
don’t see a gun list. What guns are your holsters available for?
holster is very tight. What can I do to break it in?
does it take so long to get a holster?
Can I have X model holster with a thumb-break,
rear shield, specified cant, etc., or does it have…?
offer holsters in horsehide? (Horsehide vs. cowhide)
Do you offer lined holsters?
What is the best holster for me/for my pistol? What is the best cant? Etc…
How do I place an order?
To order, you can print the
order form on this site, fill it out, and send
it to me as an e-mail attachment, or just e-mail me with the specifications
on your holster and your contact information. I will add you to my list and
contact you a couple weeks prior to starting your order. I will also make
payment arrangements at that time. I do not take payment nor ask for credit
card info up-front when you place your order. (The exception is certain
exotics, in which case I will require a 25% deposit to defray the cost of
certain hides). Payment is accepted by check or money order mailed to my
P.O. Box, thru Pay-pal, or credit/debit card.
PLEASE NOTE: All
correspondence is done through
e-mail, as I was spending several hours a day on the phone with
customers and time stuck on the phone is time out of the shop not working on
orders and increasing the turnaround times. (Return to top
A note about inquiring about a pending order
When e-mailing to ask the status of a pending order, please include as many
specific details about the order as possible. An e-mail that only says "Hi,
this is John. When can expect my holster?" and nothing else does not get an
immediate response because I am left searching through orders to ascertain
which one of umpteen "Johns" you are. This is made especially difficult when
you e-mail from a different e-mail address than the initial order
correspondence. Having to determine who you are what you ordered is also
time out of the shop and leads to e-mail that is not answered promptly or
may get unintentionally overlooked depending on e-mail volume. (Return to top
What colors are your holsters available in?
My standard colors are black, dark brown, saddle tan, and cordovan/mahogany.
But I will do other colors upon customer request, (having even done emerald
green for the retirement of a member of one city’s Emerald Society of Irish
Officers). Exotics are most commonly available in earth-tones, though some
such as sting-ray can be had in almost any color imaginable (including some
that should never been seen on a holster!). Most of the holsters pictured on
this site are cordovan, simply because it photographs well. (Return
to top of page)
I don’t see a gun list. What guns are your
holsters available for?
I chose not to add a gun list, simply because with my own personal
collection of real and dummy guns, friends and fellow officers gracious
enough to lend me their pistols when needed, and two local gun shops I work
closely with; it is very rare that I cannot fill an order due to not having
access to a particular firearm. (Return to top of page)
My holster is very tight. What can I do to
break it in?
My holsters are initially rather snug. To expedite the break-in process, I
recommend wrapping your unloaded pistol in the 4-mil plastic bag the holster
was shipped in, or a couple layers of wax paper waxy side out. Work the
wrapped pistol completely into the holster and let it sit overnight. This
should stretch and loosen things up just enough. Many are fond of the wax
paper method as it leaves some wax residue inside the holster that will not
damage the holster or pistol, but slickens things up. DO NOT soak the
holster in water or use any type of oil or leather conditioner on it in any
way. (Return to top of page)
Why does it take so long to get a holster?
The fact that I am still a full-time police officer making holsters on the
side, supply and demand, and the time it takes to make one being a one-man
shop. Everything from the cutting, stitching, molding, and dyeing; to the
final packaging and shipping is done strictly by me. The only fingerprints
on your holster are mine. And I will not sacrifice quantity for quality. If
I would not wear it myself I will not ship it. Granted it does not take
months to make your holster. I equate it to waiting in line at your favorite
fast-food place. The kid behind the counter can have your order ready in two
minutes, but if there are 10 people in line in front of you, you are going
to have a 20-minute wait. You are waiting for your order to come up on my
list. (Return to top of page)
Can I have X model holster with a
thumb-break, rear shield, specified cant, etc., or does it have…?
The answer to “does this holster have” or “can you make” is pretty much
always “Yes”. You can have your holster any way you want it, and I truly
mean that. Any of my holsters are available at any cant you request, with or
without a thumb-break, with or without a rear shield, and with the rear
shield designed as large or as small as the customer specifies. I have made
1911 rear shields so large that they cover the entire rear of the slide
including the beavertail and cocked hammer, and so small they covered only
the manual safety. I cut all of my patterns by hand, and though a clicker
press would certainly be a great time-cutting measure and speed up
production; I do not want to be restricted by die-cut patterns as I consider
myself a true custom holster maker. I like the freedom cutting by hand
affords me. I think the term “custom” is used far too loosely these days.
Just because the holster is hand-made by a small shop and molded to a
specific pistol does not make it “custom” in my opinion. I may catch crap
from other makers for saying this, but if the holster maker will not alter
his pattern to the cant you specify, or add a thumb-break or rear shield if
you desire one, or change other features for you that you want; then is the
holster he makes truly custom? (Return to top of page)
Do you offer holsters in horsehide? (Horsehide
I use horsehide in many of my holsters, where I feel it is appropriate,
without advertising it as such. There are two types of horsehide available,
determined by how it is tanned, hard-rolled and soft-rolled. All of the
mouth-bands and thumb-break reinforcements on my holsters are hard-rolled
horsehide, the front piece of all my Sneaky Pete pocket holsters is
hard-rolled horsehide, and all of the straps and loops on any of my holsters
are soft-rolled horsehide. I do not find any real benefit to using horsehide
for the body of the holster. Hard-rolled is stiffer than cowhide, so I use
it where necessary. Soft-rolled is more supple and holds up better to
flexing without stressing and cracking better than a finished piece of
cowhide, so I use it for straps and loops to extend their longevity. I keep
enough hard-rolled horsehide on-hand to make a complete holster out of it at
the customer’s request if that is what you want. I do not charge extra for
horsehide holsters. Despite what you may have been told, I do not find it
more difficult to work with (it simply requires altering some techniques)
and it is not more expensive than cowhide. The real problem with it is
overall size and quality of a single piece. It is sold it strips, most
barely long enough to make a belt, some barely wide enough to make a
holster, with several inches on the ends that are useless, uneven thickness
throughout it’s length, and enough flaws in the usable center so selection
of where to cut the pattern is more critical than with cowhide; sometimes
like fitting pieces of a puzzle. (Return to top of page)
Do you offer lined holsters?
Back to true custom and you can have anything you want – yes. My In-Cognito
Deluxe is lined without asking, and priced accordingly. Any of my other
holsters are available lined with cowhide smooth-side in or veg-tanned
kangaroo. (E-mail for current pricing on either option). In the construction
of a holster lined with kangaroo or cowhide, a thinner piece of exterior
leather is used which, when combined with the lining leather, makes the
holster the exact same thickness as it’s unlined, standard leather
counterpart. I will not use suede for a lining. (The one custom option you
cannot have! ☺). You may have heard the rumors about pistols being damaged
by suede-lined holsters. This was true when most guns were blued. Suede is
not vegetable-tanned but chrome-tanned. The chromium salts used in tanning
suede can pit the blueing of a pistol left in a suede-lined holster for
extended periods. Fine blueing is pretty much a thing of the past, so this
is not as much of a concern with all of today’s wonder finishes. But another
problem with suede is that it can be a trap for dirt, grit, and moisture; so
what was designed to protect your gun’s finish can end up scratching it. The
real problem with suede as a lining, though, is that it has no body and
firmness of it’s own. What this means is you cannot down-size the thickness
of holster leather when lining with suede, like you can with kangaroo or
cow, so you end up with a thicker, bulkier holster than an un-lined one.
Bulk is not something you want in a concealment rig. I try to keep my
holsters as thin as function will allow for this reason. (Return
to top of page)
What is the best holster for me/for my pistol?
What is the best cant? Etc…
There is, unfortunately, no real answer to this question. The decision is as
broad and personal a choice as the car you drive, the clothes you wear, the
shoes you find comfortable, or the mate you selected. There are so many
different variables that come into play such as physical body type and
build, levels of dexterity, clothing style, reasons for carrying, and how
you go about your daily routine that there simply is no one holster that
will work for everyone. What works for your friend may be a horrible choice
for you. The OWB worn at 4:30 position (12 o’clock being the belt buckle)
that your buddy who works club security recommended may not work for you
since he spends all his time on his feet at his job and accessibility is not
an issue, but you spend your day behind the wheel of vehicle where a gun
worn behind the hip may take too much contorting to reach. A good friend of
mine whose opinion I highly respect when it comes to all things firearms and
shooting related orders all of his holsters with a straight vertical drop. I
have tried it and I simply cannot conceal as well that way as I can with a
forward cant, but it works best for him in terms of concealment,
acquisition, and draw. He has tried a forward cant and is not fond of it.
Unfortunately I am not aware of any holster makers with a
try-it-before-you-buy-it test-drive policy. The best advice I can give is to
see if you can borrow some different holsters from friends to try out, or go
to the local gun shop or range (especially on an IDPA or similar match
night), get talking to the shooters and tell them you are new to concealed
carry, and see if they will let you try on their gear. One common factor I
have found is that gun-people love to talk and show off their equipment. (Return
to top of page)