'The true Soldier fights not because he hates what is in front of him, but because He loves what is behind him.' -G. K. Chesterton

15 February 2011

It's Here!

The new rig arrived today and it's absolutely beautiful. A reminder before I go into the rig itself. A couple of months ago I ordered a custom competition rig from Michael at Michael's Custom Holsters. I wanted a pancake style with belt and mag carrier in brown basketweave. Michael and I traded many e-mails to ensure he understood what I wanted but more importantly what I needed. He even did some research into IDPA (the primary use for the rig) to make sure it fell within their fairly strict guidelines and was something I'd enjoy using. A note to the FCC; I paid for this rig in full and neither Michael nor I have any expectations beyond that.

This is what we came up with. My wants, our ideas and Michael's execution. This is a fast first impression as I opened the box just an hour ago. I'll be doing follow up posts as I take it out for it's first shoot as well as long term as it gets worn in and battle scarred.

This is the holster with mag carrier, belt and two extras; a small wallet with allen wrench and extra screws for the retention system and a nice dust bag for the whole rig. The first thing I noticed was the quality feel and absolutely perfect finish. The leather is thick and well formed with a nice softer leather lining. Hardware is brass, which sets off the brown color nicely if I do say so myself, with stainless screws. The edges are dyed black, including the belt slots. It's obvious that Michael's attention to detail is first rate. The basket weave pattern is sharp with darker dye in the crevices making it really pop. The three pieces color match very well.

Here's the rig with G35 and two extra magazines in the carrier. The holster covers the trigger and the muzzle is flush with the bottom. The magazines sit high for easy access but there's sufficient coverage to hold them securely. They're still stiff from no use but even so both pistol and magazines fit well and release with a good tug. Both holster and carrier have an adjustable tension system that Michael came up with himself. Note the well formed pistol outline and the lack of visible stitching on the exterior of the holster and carrier. Both are made with hidden stitching. The belt has visible black stitching that is a nice, subtle touch while being virtually invisible. The holster has a slightly forward cant but is nearly neutral.

Here's the back of the rig. The belt lining is smooth tan leather while the holster and carrier are unfinished leather that's tough and I expect will wear well. Note the brass plates with stainless steel allen head screws. That's the adjustable tension system. It'll allow me to adjust the tension holding in both pistol and magazines on the fly and as the rig wears in. The pistol and magazines cannot release during hard use and competition but also can't stick. They have to fit snugly enough to be retained but release when I need them. I'll most likely end up using Blue Loc Tite on the screws but I won't know until I've run it for a while. The belt buckle is brass as are the retention screws. You can see the white stitching on the back of the holster and carrier.

Here's an overhead view inside the mag carrier. You can see the lining and the tension system. On the right you can just see the hidden stitches. How the heck does he do that anyway?

Another view of the wallet, allen wrench with extra screws and dust bag. I have always said that I'll pay more for good service. It's the little things that make me smile and these were an unexpected and delightful touch. A small thing I know but very much appreciated. Way too many folks out there will give you the absolute minimum, only what they must and has been contracted for. Customer Service doesn't begin only if you have a problem. If the relationship starts out well it's a good indication it'll end well.

Here's an end view showing the black dyed edges and the thickness of the leather as well as the inward curve of the holster and carrier. I didn't get a chance to try it on yet (that should happen tomorrow) but in holding them up to my waist they fit very naturally.

I am just as pleased as punch. This is the first custom rig I've ever had and I couldn't be happier so far. It's exactly what I had in mind when I first started down this road and that's thanks to Michael's hard work and devotion to giving me what I envisioned along with what I needed. When ordering a custom rig like this one it's vital to have an open dialogue between customer and holster maker and Michael and I spent a lot of time trading ideas back and forth until we narrowed it down to what you see here. It's absolutely drop dead gorgeous. Pictures truly do not do it justice. It's a work of art. Fit and finish are first rate and the quality of materials and craftsmanship really shine through. Michael is an artist.

The proof is in the pudding however and I intend wring this rig out as hard as I can. Time will tell but from initial impressions I'm confident it can take anything I can dish out. I'm certainly intending to run it as hard as I can. This will not be a closet Queen. It's a competition rig and will be used as such.

I am so happy. Thanks Michael.



Evyl Robot Michael said...

I'm thrilled that you love your rig so much! Now, take that thing out and run it hard! :D

Ed Rasimus said...

Repeat to yourself, Ed, repeat: "I don't need another holster, I don't need another holster..." but if I did, that would sure be a guy to talk to.

Six said...

I promise I will Michael. It'll never be stuck in a closet somewhere. It's a fighting rig and will get much use. I'll be the absolute envy of the firing line!

Ah, go ahead Ed. Who deserves it more than you? I can't say enough positive things about Michael Ed. This was a dream, spoil me rig, one that's imminently practical as well as simply gorgeous. I was anxious, never having done anything like this before but he made it downright pleasurable. Michael was positive, easy to work with and was ready to incorporate new ideas and thoughts into giving me what I wanted and needed.

Ed Rasimus said...

My wife looked over my shoulder and said in her best menacing voice, "Put the mouse down and step away from the web-site. No one needs to get hurt here."

Miguel said...

[jealous]Damn! That is a gorgeous kit! [/jealous]


Six said...

She Who Must Be Obeyed Ed. Hey, Christmas is only 10 months away!

Now if only that rig would automatically confer superhuman shooting skills on me Miguel. Oh well, at least I'll be the best looking last place finisher.