The forgotten element in the self-defense package is the holster. Shooters will cheerfully pay top dollar for the best gun and ammunition and double that for custom stocks and gunsmithing. Why then are so many willing to base their holster choice on whatever fits the gun and can be found in the discount bin in back corner of the gun shop? Nothing says that a shooter’s not serious about self-defense as loudly as his carrying a snub in a holster that costs less than the box of the ammunition he uses to load his snub. The problem seems to be that most gun owners seem to think the fight will start sometime after the gun is already the hand. Sadly for the families of these shooters that error going to be an ugly epitaph. Let’s be blunt for a moment. The guy with the gun in his hand before the fight starts is generally the bad guy. The bad guy picks the time, place and the conditions that offer him every assault advantage. The guy re-acting to the ambush is generally the good guy. You can spend the majority of your range training time with the gun already in your hand and hope that when the fight comes the bad guy(s) will graciously pause to give you the time to put the gun in the hand. Alternatively you could spend the majority of your time learning to draw. And if you are going to learn to draw you are going to have to invest in a quality holster suitable for rigorous draw training and gun fighting. Given the declining social graces of bad guys I am puting my faith in custom holsters and draw stroke practice.
Subsequently all the holsters I am currently willing to risk both my life and the safety of my family on have all been custom holsters built around my specifications. On several occasions I have had to return holsters to the makers who would not or could not follow my directions. On one occasion I had to pay for the same holster three times before I could pry out from the hands of the holster maker what I wanted from him. Normally I would have written off the fellow and his insistence that he had a greater knowledge of what I needed than I did. Unfortunately (for me) he had a specialty I could not locate elsewhere. Currently I am limiting my holsters to a few holster makers who are skilled and willing to give me what I need. This is not so much a complaint as an indication on how high a value I place on the importance of quality and design in a self-defense holster.