Many of us have a drawer of miscellaneous holsters. Every time a pistol is purchased, we search the recesses of our mind to determine if we have a holster at home that will fit. Having so many holsters at home, we can’t remember what we have and what we don’t have. Buying another holster will certainly fit what we just purchased just in case we don’t have anything suitable in our drawer. So, we buy it. What man or woman doesn’t love to look through boxes of “odds and ends” of holsters at gun stores at $5.00 each, selecting one or two that may someday have a use? The same applies to shoulder holster rigs, both IWB (inner waste band) and OWB (outer waste band) holsters, ankle holsters, thigh holsters and leg holsters, buying the holster first and then looking for a pistol to fit it. There’s nothing wrong with this, except that you end up with a drawer of miscellaneous holsters and combinations that may not fit anything, but who can resist the smell of leather?
Your drawer is a treasure-trove. It contains everything you need for the activities of a day. Your bedside pistol may be in a gun-rug. You’ll move your pistol to either an IWB or OWB holster to carry on your waist or put it in a conceal carry purse or shoulder holster. Perhaps you’re going hiking later in the day or you’re off on a hunting trip; you need to fit your leg holster or hunting backpack with a method of pistol carry. Perhaps you’re carrying a pistol in your vehicle, and rather than on your person, you need to secure it to either the center console or under the dash. Each situation requires a different holster or holster rig. There are so many different holsters to pack for just one day.
The Right Choice!
Alien Gear Holsters has a solution to this dilemma: “The ShapeShift Modular Holster System is just one part of an entire system of carry possibilities.” This is a polymer holster which can be used all day, in a variety of ways. It can easily convert from one carry position to the next by moving the twist locks, sliding the connector lock, interlocking the rails, attaching an adapter, adding spacers, adding lock pins, adjusting straps, manipulating a mount button and inserting the lock plate into the grip plate. Confused? Don’t be. It’s very simple. Let’s give it a test.
Rise and shine, I’m selecting the clothing for the day. My Smith & Wesson M&P full-size 9mm is sitting on my nightstand waiting for my choice of holsters. I decide on the Cloak Mod OWB Holster as I’m wearing a suitcoat for an important meeting with the boss. I could wear it on a slide included in the packaging, but I’m wearing form-fitting slacks with a stylish belt not strong enough for the included slide, so my best choice is the paddle. What’s nice about the Cloak Mod OWB Holster is that I don’t have to wear slacks that are a size larger to accommodate the holster. The paddle or slide fits comfortably just behind my hip bone. I can customize the carry and cant for either the paddle, slide or drop leg if I’ve purchased the Drop Leg Holster hardware. However, at the meeting with the boss, the Drop Leg would be a little inappropriate and obviously, obvious! The Cloak Mod’s cant can position a holster at 0 degrees or 17 degrees either direction for your specific draw style. Retention is accomplished by tightening the screws that attach the outer shell to the holster base. Another reason for my wearing the paddle design is that it works with the Cloak Dock Mounting System in my car.
OWB to Vehicle Docking System
The Cloak Mod OWB Holster is perfectly comfortable while sitting in the driver’s seat with the seatbelt in place. However, over a long distance, I may want to shed my suit jacket and the holster. This might be necessary as I’m short in the torso, and the seatbelt pushes the polymer holster into my ribs while traveling. If I’ve got an hour drive, comfort is going to rule. I can remove the Cloak Mod OWB Holster and attach it to the Cloak Dock Mounting System that I’ve located on the right side of the console in my vehicle. Here it is accessible to both the driver and the passenger. The system is multi-surface-compatible so I could also mount it on the side of a wooden bed frame, on drywall, sheet metal and plastic in my home or office. The OWB holster is docked to it with the paddle side out or the shell side out. The docking depth can be changed to increase or decrease the space between the holster and the surface you’ve attached the dock to. Full instructions are provided as well as the mounting hardware for all surfaces.
I’ve reached the office, so I disconnect the Cloak Mod OWB Holster from the dock and slip it back on my waist. The Cloak Dock Mounting System remains permanently affixed to the side of my console so that when returning home at the end of the day, I just reinsert the OWB holster to the docking station for the trip home.
IWB to Backpack Adapter
On the same day, I’ve chosen to bring along the 4.0 IWB Modular Holster. The polymer 4.0 IWB holster is mounted on a “CoolVent Neoprene” base, which immediately conforms to my waist. The half-shell configuration of the holster includes the pre-installed Adjustable Retention Unit. Besides retention, I can also change the cant and ride height by repositioning removable clips on either side of the holster base. I’ve brought along a pair of jeans to change into during lunch so I can go on a walk. The IWB Modular Holster is comfortable to wear if I wear a size larger in the waistband of my jeans, remembering that women’s curvy hips tend to interfere with the lying flat of the holster against the body. I’ve chosen this holster because I can convert it for use on my backpack when I choose to go hiking or hunting. The Backpack Adapter can also be attached to seat belts, duffle bags and anything with a sturdy strap.
During lunch, I’m practicing for an upcoming multiple-day hike. I need to reconfigure the 4.0 IWB Modular Holster to attach to my backpack strap. To accomplish this, I remove the half-shell from the IWB base and then attach it to the half-shell sent in the Backpack Holster assembly kit. This is where most of the terminology in paragraph three above is utilized to remove and assemble the Shift Shell. Instructions for this terminology are provided in the package order. The shell is then attached to the backpack rotating adapter mechanism I’ve already positioned on the strap of the backpack. The assembly kit also includes a Thumb Release for releasing the pistol from the shell. This adapter allows me to adjust my draw just by rotating the holster within the cogs. I get a 360-degree rotation and customized retention for the perfect draw. It’s considered open carry, and now I’m ready should I confront a two-legged or four-legged animal.
From Many to One!
In one day, I’ve utilized four different methods of carry with the ShapeShift Modular Holster System. I’ve reduced the size of my holster drawer to two separate systems of open and concealed carry which I can manipulate into various forms. Whether I’m carrying my 9mm M&P or my smaller 9mm Taurus G2, I’m ready for the demands of my environment. The ShapeShift Modular Holster System is available in more than 500+ handgun holster models and boasts that even though life is tough, Alien Gear Holsters are tougher. I’m in total agreement.
|This article first appeared in Small Arms Review V24N9 (November 2020)