Accessories - Gun/Rifle

Let's Talk Gun Accessories - Shoulder Holsters/Rigs

Shoulder holsters or shoulder rigs are an interesting topic, especially for women.

Admitedly there are times when you need a gun out of your way but accessible.  There are times that having your gun on your waist is not the right place because of the activity you are doing.  There are times when you need it accessible but still not 100% visible. 

Oh sure there are quite a few options there but there are also limitations if you are a woman.   The option I was looking for for my yard work was a shoulder rig.  I wanted a shoulder holster so it would be out of the way when I am tending to my homestead activities which include curious goats but accessbile for snake elimination or other preditors.

The first shoulder holster I purchased was a Black Hawk shoulder holster.  I have had some success with some other Uncle Mikes holsters and thought I would give it a try.  The Black Hawk shoulder holster was supposed to be one size fits all for body size.  The only size options were for the guns themselves.  I found the size needed for my particular gun and purchased it with the hopes of being able wear it to the range the following day to begin to break the holster in and make sure it was usable, for me, when needed.

What I found with the holster was that it was not adjustable to the size of a person 5'4" (average height of an American woman).  When I couldn't get it to adjust I figured I was not doing something correctly because I have not ever had a shoulder holster.  It turned out the problem was it would not adjust enough in the length between the actual holster and the loop that snaps onto your belt and the magazine holster and the loop that snaps to your belt.  With the inability to secure the holster properly it was impossible to draw the gun because the whole rig would move.

I gave the shoulder rig to Ronnie and he was able to adjust it with no problem.  Of course then I went promptly out and purchased another shoulder holster.  I was getting ready to do some wilderness camping and wanted to get one pretty quick so I would have it with me on the trip.  The area where were going to be camping in was private, so I could open carry if I wanted to, and surrounded by national forest so there would be lots of "wild things".

My next purchase was of the Academy store brand shoulder holster.  It looked smaller and again said it was one size fits all.  I again found that one size fits all means one-size-fits-all for the average male not female.  The exact same problem as with the Uncle Mike's holster was present on this holster.  I was so disgusted that I went to our local gun store and bought a outside the waistband holster for my Ruger GP100 357 revolver to just wear on my gun belt.

While I was camping I was telling my friend, Phil, about my problem with finding a shoulder holster that would fit and allow me to safely draw my gun should I need it.  Phil said he had a couple of older style holsters that he had found at different places that he thought they would be adjustable to my size.  I was very intrigued.  Phil sent the first one over to me via his wife, my friend Pam.  The first shoulder holster was made for a small 38 special or 22 revolver.  A Smith and Wesson with a 2.5 inch barral or smaller fit nice into this holster and it was small enought to fit a woman and would most likely not fit too many men.  The holster was made of a light brown leather and was made by Bucheimer.  The leather was in excellent condition as was all other parts of the holster.  My 38 special was too big for this holster as was my Ruger GP100 357 but I figure it gives me an excuse to buy a little 22 revolver for the holster.  If you can buy a holster for your gun than surely you can buy a gun for your holster

The second holster Phil sent over was made similar to the Bucheimer holster but the actual holster was larger and had no markings on it.  It was adjustable to me and my height and securely attached to my gun belt while snuggly holding my Ruger GP100 357. 

I am sure there are holsters out there some where to fit averaged sized woman currently on the market but I have yet to find one.  It may be that they are it the upper price ranges and perhaps out of my price range when it comes to holsters,  I will however continue to look for the perfect shoulder rig that  is currently being made and let you know when I find it.

So how do you know that the shoulder holster fits well?  The first thing is the holster should be able to fasten securely to your gun belt as shown in the above picture.  There should not be enough slack to allow the holster to giggle around.  When you draw the weapon the holster should not move forward with the gun.  The fasteners should hold the holster securely in place to allow for a smooth, clean draw.

Pay attention to where the holster itself is situated under your arm.  You do not want the holster too high that it is uncomfortable or too low that you can not smoothly draw.  You should be able to move in a normal manner without the gun moving around everytime you move.  Again the bottom line is how can you draw? 



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