I’ll be the first to admit a “gen-u-ine” leather holster is tops for looks, smell and sometimes even for carrying your gun. But a highly detailed leather holster, one that shows all the outlines of the gun it fits (they call it “boning” in the business), often takes some breaking in before the gun can either fit the holster fully, or come out easily. That’s usually a process involving repeated drawing and re-holstering and can sometimes chew up the insides of a tightly fitting rig if the gun has sharp edges. In the olden days we used to spray the “clamshell” sides of our duty holsters with spray silicon. Without it, the leather edges of the clamshell were sort of “grabby” as you drew your 6″ Model 19 to take care of the errant miscreant. After a judicious spray of silicone, the gun snicked out so fast it dazzled bystanders. Of course, we were idiots, since that same process made the gun that much easier to grab if we were rolling around in the mud with said miscreant. It also doesn’t work for regular holsters either.
Having said all that, if you’re carrying concealed, you want your gun to be secure, but still able to present easily and predictably. Silicone isn’t the best stuff, and for years I nosed about for something that would work without destroying the leather. You see, you could smear grease on the inside and it would draw more easily. But that same grease would permeate the leather, softening it and ruining your holster. So — bad idea.
About 15 years ago, I stumbled onto Leather Lighting, offered by Mitch Rosen of Mitch Rosen Extraordinary Gunleather. Mitch’s gear is some of the finest out there, highly detailed with great attention paid to final fit and hand-boning to get the best gun/holster meld, and for just plain good looks! His Leather Lightning actually coats the surface of the inside of the holster and doesn’t penetrate the leather. The holster stays firm, but the Lighting allows you to actually draw your gun without getting a hernia. Leather Lighting has a magic ingredient called “Polysiloxanes” that does the magic. I dunno what it is, but it works. The 1/2-ounce bottle (just a tad works) is $12 with two bucks for shipping and such. For more info: (603) 647-2971, www.americanhandgunner.com/mitch-rosen
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