J.W. Holster and Belt Rig from Sixgunner.com Leather

 

by Jeff Quinn

photography by Jeff Quinn & Boge Quinn

June 17, 2006

 

 

 

Over the years, I have accumulated a large quantity of holsters. Some I use, but most I do not. How they made their way into my holster pile I do not know, but some are poorly designed, poorly executed, or both. However, I also have a few good holsters and belts which see quite a bit of use. Several are concealment holsters built for social work, but a few are for field use. Some of my favorites are Western style belt / holster rigs. Western rigs are very popular these days with shooters, whether they compete in fast draw, Cowboy Action Shooting, or just like to wear their guns in a good old west rig.

Most Western style rigs are not to my liking. Usually, the belts are too stiff, and the holsters too soft, which is just the opposite of what they should be. I like a soft, supple, flexible belt that is just stiff enough for good support, but will bend and flex with the wearer. I like the holster to be on the stiff side. It needs to hold its shape well for easy re-holstering of the sixgun. Also, a too-soft holster will tend to slow the draw a bit. Stiff belts and soft holsters seem to dominate the supply of Western rigs available, resulting in uncomfortable carry of a good sixgun.

My favorite style of Western rig is the one made famous by John Wayne. He understood what a good rig should be, and the one that he wore in numerous movies has become known as the "John Wayne, "Duke", or other similar term. His rig was simple, yet almost perfect for the carry of a good sixgun. The belt was soft and flexible, finished in its natural color, with a simple single loop holster. The cartridge loops and billet were dyed to match the tan holster.

Several holster makers attempt to make a good John Wayne style rig, but most miss the mark slightly. The best Wayne style rig that I have seen is made by a relatively new holster company called Sixgunner.com Leather. Joel Cosby is the owner of Sixgunner.com, and the holster business grew out of that website. Joel saw that the demand was there for top quality leather for shooters, even with all of the holster rigs currently available on the market.

Speaking by telephone with Joel one day about proper holster rigs, I told him that what I really liked was a good, comfortable, Duke style rig, but that nobody really did it just right. Joel stated that he could fix me up, and that I would not be disappointed. Turns out that he was right. His rigs are made to order, but after a while, the package arrived, and the contents exceeded my expectations.

As can be seen in the pictures better than words can describe, Sixgunner.com Leatherís J.W. rig is a beautiful piece of workmanship. The contrast of the natural belt with the tanned holster and  trimmings is striking. The two and one-half inch belt is suede lined, and offers good support, but is still flexible enough for comfort. The stitching is well-executed, and the belt wears twenty cartridge loops and a nickel-plated buckle.

The holster is where Joel really got it right.  It is plenty stiff for a clean, quick draw and easy re-holstering. Looking at the top of the holster, it is readily apparent that Joel understands sixguns and holsters. The top edge is rolled away from the vertical line of the holster body, to ease sliding the sixgun back into the holster without the cylinder hanging up on the leather. This should seem obvious to anyone, but many holster makers ignore this simple little detail. I usually have to do this on my holsters after I buy them, but this holster is done properly from the factory. Nice touch. Little details like this separate good holsters from great holsters. The J.W. holster is made from high quality leather, and properly styled with a single loop. My sample is lined, but it is also available unlined, if the customer so desires. I prefer the lined.  The leg tie-down is done correctly on this holster, and the hammer thong wears a leather tab that greatly enhances its ease of use. This holster is designed just right, and expertly crafted, with no frills or floral stampings, just as John Wayne, and myself, prefer. It is classically beautiful, and an excellent working holster rig. I expect that the appearance of the natural leather will just get better with age and wear. It goes perfectly with my Shootists U.S. Firearms Limited edition Single Action Army .44 Special sixgun. These were built last year to commemorate the twentieth anniversary of the organization that was founded by John Taffin.  Mine is number 37, of a total of 55 built for the Shootists.

Sixgunner.com Leather makes these holsters to order, to fit just about any sixgun make and caliber. The list of options is varied enough to suit any need, and ordering online is easy. The customer just chooses from the options offered, with drop-down boxes for each selection. Also, the prices on Sixgunner.com Leatherís holsters and belts are very reasonable, priced well below comparable rigs from most other makers.

As stated at the beginning of this piece, I have a lot of western rigs. I now have a new favorite. The J.W. rig from Sixgunner.com leather is a beautiful, practical, and comfortable rig, and I highly recommend it.

View the entire line of quality Sixgunner.com Leather products online at: http://shop.sixgunner.com/.

Jeff Quinn

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J.W. Holster and Belt Rig from Sixgunner.com Leather.

 

 

Jeff wore the Sixgunner.com J.W. rig at the 2006 Shootist Holiday, recently held at the NRA Whittington Center near Raton, New Mexico.

 

 

 

 

The author is proud to be a member of the Shootists. Jeff's U.S. Firearms Single-Action Army .44 Special (number 37 of 55 made), produced last year to commemorate the twentieth anniversary of the Shootist Holiday, is right at home in the Sixgunner.com J.W. rig.