Follow me

Quick Look: Ruger LCP Custom and the Sticky Holster
November 21, 2015|Holster Discount CodeHolster Reviews

Quick Look: Ruger LCP Custom and the Sticky Holster

Quick Look: Ruger LCP Custom and the Sticky Holster

The Ruger LCP Custom (aka “Red Trigger” model) makes a fine pocket pistol.  However, the sights stick out more than the original, which eliminates my Kydex holster options.  I’ve got a side mounted laser on mine, which makes finding a holster even harder.

I’ve owned a Ruger LCP for about 4 years now.  Given the right ammunition (I like Hornady Critical Defense for carry and Blazer Aluminum case for practice; both feed well) the pocket pistol is very reliable and surprisingly accurate.  Even on a 50ft range, center mass shots are easily made.  But, the blister “sights” suck and it takes some practice to acquire them quickly, or make a follow up shot.  Enter the LCP Custom.

This shot does a nice job of showing the new aluminum trigger, improved sights, and LaserLyte LCP unit. The LaserLyte really preserves the lines of the LCP (if you care about such things)

This shot does a nice job of showing the new aluminum trigger, improved sights, and LaserLyte LCP unit. The LaserLyte really preserves the lines of the LCP (if you care about such things)

When I heard that Ruger was making a new LCP with decent sights, I got on the waiting list at my local shop (shout out to Geno’s Tools and Guns).  In the time between when I first heard about the new LCP and its release, Ruger added some other mods to what would be called the “Ruger LCP Custom”.  The upgrades include:

  • A photo-luminescent (glow-in-the-dark) front sight
  • Wide, Red Anodized Aluminum Trigger
  • Stainless Steel Guide Rod
  • and of course, the drift adjustable rear sights

Note that the front sight is not what I would call a “night sight” as you need to charge it up with a flashlight or other light source.  It is NOT a tritium sight (and Ruger does not say it IS, just thought I’d mention it).  You can do that before you head out to the corner store, but if it’s going to be in your pocket for more than an hour, it’s no longer a night sight.  Still, it is a vast improvement over the mosquito bite bump on the original, whether it glows or not.

Ruger LCP Custom front night sight (glow in the dark)

Ruger LCP Custom front night sight (glow in the dark)

The aluminum trigger looks cool, but if I have to pull this out, it’s not to solicit opinions on aesthetics.  If it moves rearward under pressure, it will do.  I found the original version works just fine, but opinions vary.

The stainless steel guide rod is a nice addition, but not because I’m afraid of the original plastic one wearing out.  It’s nice because there is less of a chance of damaging it, when you remove it for cleaning. Another “nice to have” but not really a huge improvement.

In my opinion, the biggest improvement on the Ruger LCP Custom is the drift adjustable rear sight. The sight picture is vastly improved on the Custom and I left the range feeling that I could make any shot, including head, at any legal range.  Inside a 10 inch ring at 50 feet was easy on the original; more so now.  But, the time needed to acquire the rear sights for a follow up shot was much improved.  I’d say over a one second improvement for me.  Of course, you’re not me, so you might do better or worse.

A view through the greatly improved LCP Custom Sights

A view through the greatly improved LCP Custom Sights

The modifications have little effect on the weight, but they make the tiny .380 about .2″ taller.  Decent sights tend to do that and I think it was an acceptable trade-off.  Unfortunately, it meant that most of my  “hard” LCP holsters did not work.  I have a nice Braids holster, as well as an OWB Fobus that won’t fit the LCP Custom (if you are wondering why I had an OWB holster for an LCP, I’ll say that this pistol is so small, you can conceal it almost as well OWB, as IWB.  It also made it easy to get a purchase on).  As is usually the case, the aftermarket takes some time to catch up to new pistol designs.

Well, since none of the holsters fit anyway and there was nothing on the market yet, I decided to make it even harder to find a holster by adding a side mounted LaserLyte laser.  This is a really cool design that I recommend for anyone that pocket carries an LCP and it fits both new and old LCPs as well as its Keltec brother.  It is much sleeker than the trigger guard lasers.

The LaserLyte unit mounts cleanly to the side of any LCP or KelTec p3at

The LaserLyte unit mounts cleanly to the side of any LCP or KelTec p3at

This would be a good time to mention that my first LCP came WITH a trigger guard mounted laser.  It doesn’t matter what brand it was, because they all mount the same way, as a clam shell over the trigger guard.  The problem with this system is that it creates a sharp edge on the inside of the guard.  Normally, it wouldn’t be a problem, but if you are going to run a couple boxes of ammo through the LCP, that guard will snap up against your trigger finger at least half of the time.  I came home with a hell of a blister after my first day at the range with the old LCP and I almost sold the gun because of it.  Well, with the LaserLyte system, the laser is out of the way and personally, I think it looks a lot sleeker.  Installation takes about 15 min with a set of punches to drive out the assembly pins.  A little tip for you; pick up some threadlocker for the mounting screws.  The little LCP has an impressive recoil (for its size) and tends to loosen the screws.  I think that this laser has been discontinued by the manufacturer, so pick up one or two on Amazon, while you still can.  Expect to pay about $100, which is a pretty good deal.  If you can’t find them anymore, I’ve got a few put away.  Leave me a comment below and I’ll gladly send you one for $150 😉

I’m kidding!  You can still find them on Amazon (although someday you may have to come to me).  If you use our link below, we’ll get a couple pennies to keep this site running and it won’t cost you a penny more:

LaserLyte Side Mounted Laser Sight for the Ruger LCP

The combination of the LCP Custom’s sights and the laser meant that I couldn’t find an OWB or Kydex/leather IWB holster anywhere.  No matter, I usually carry this pistol in a pocket, when I need to be discrete.  One such example is a local movie theater that has “gun free zone” sign on their door.  I’ve never noticed that sign, but it’s probably a good idea to make sure there is NO chance that someone will catch a glimpse of my carry piece.  All of my “goin’ to the movies” guns have night sights and/or a laser, so the LCP Custom with LaserLyte fit the bill.  I started the holster hunt by looking at some Remoras, as I like their products and have reviewed them in the past.  The Remora also gives you an IWB option.  The sticky surface holds the holster in place for pocket OR Inside the Waistband.  The only downside I’ve found is that the surface texture tends to leave an imprint on you, if it touches skin (like might happen if you have a bathing suit on, or are otherwise “going commando”).  It’s also got a clammy feeling.  I mentioned this to a friend and he showed me a similar product that he carries a Glock 21 in, IWB.

That product is made by “Sticky Holsters” and works on a similar principle to the Remora.

Well, the Glock is a bit heavier than the LCP, so I figured if it worked for him, it might work for me.  I made a quick trip to Amazon, via the iPad and picked up two holsters that I thought might work:

The SM-2 Sticky Holster

The SM-2 provides a nice fit for the LCP Custom or a Ruger LCP original. Everything fits like it was made for the gun. But, if you have a laser, the SM-3 is a better fit. FYI, I've also carried this around IWB with sweatpants on, all day. It stays PUT.

The SM-2 provides a nice fit for the LCP Custom or a Ruger LCP original. Everything fits like it was made for the gun. But, if you have a laser, the SM-3 is a better fit. FYI, I’ve also carried this around IWB with sweatpants on, all day. It stays PUT.

and the SM-3 Sticky Holster

The SM-3 Sticky Holster provides a looser fit. But does allow for an easy grasp of the grip. With the LaserLyte in place, the fit is snug enough that the LCP does not float around.

The SM-3 Sticky Holster provides a looser fit. But does allow for an easy grasp of the grip. With the LaserLyte in place, the fit is snug enough that the LCP does not float around.

Both priced out at $24.95, with free Amazon Prime shipping.  By the way, if you haven’t shopped Amazon for holsters, you can find quite a few on there.  However, I’ve learned from experience that you’ll want to confirm the model number fits your gun, on the manufacturer’s web site.  Some vendors “stretch the truth” on what fits.  The links above were verified correct, by me.

My first impression of both holsters was that they were VERY well made.  They are also more flexible than the competing Remora’s, which eliminates any break in period.  They are comfy the very first time you use them.  On the outside, the holsters have a pleasant feeling, not unlike fine glove leather….wait, that sounds a bit prissy.  I’m not usually wearing “fine glove leather”, so let’s say they feel like a baby’s bottom.  Yeah, that sounds manly!

Both holsters fit the LCP and in fact, also fit my Kahr CT380 (watch for the upcoming review!).  Although well suited to pocket carry, I experimented with IWB on both the LCP and the CT380.  The little Kahr has a longer grip and in my opinion is better suited for IWB carry.  However, for the purposes of a HOLSTER review, I’ll say that the Sticky Holsters kept both guns in place between my belt and Superman boxers, all day.

Reverse of the SM-2 Sticky Holster with the LCP in place. I think this is the best solution for LCP pocket carry if you DO NOT have the LaserLyte in place. With it, the fit is on the snug side and you could find yourself wearing the wrong king of protection on a fast draw.

Reverse of the SM-2 Sticky Holster with the LCP in place. I think this is the best solution for LCP pocket carry if you DO NOT have the LaserLyte in place. With it, the fit is on the snug side and you could find yourself wearing the wrong king of protection on a fast draw.

What is noticeably different in the Sticky Holster vs the Remora is the feeling at any place the holster touches skin.  The Remora has a rougher surface that locks so tight to your skin, it pulls at it if you are moving around a lot.  The Sticky Holster seems to grip as well for carry, but doesn’t bite your skin.  I’m not sure if it “breathes” better or what, but it’s also not wet with sweat on a hot day.  Note, I’m still a big fan of Remora and will buy plenty more, but the Sticky has a lot going for it.  I think the trade off will be that Remora has a liner option that the stickies don’t.  If you have a gun with sharp edges on the side, which stick out (like the safeties on the Smith and Wesson M&Ps or some 1911s) I think the lined Remoras would hold up better.  But for the smooth Ruger LCP and my Kahr CT380, I like the Sticky Holster just fine.

A sticky pair

A sticky pair!  Notice how the SM-2 is more tightly formed around the trigger guard area.

For pocket carry, both the SM-2 and the SM-3 would work fine on any LCP without laser.  The SM-3 is a looser fit, but not excessively so.  If you have a side mounted laser like mine, or a front mount, I would go with the SM-3.  The SM-2 is too snug fitting with my laser on there, to make me comfortable.  I wouldn’t want to pull it out to find that the holster was still on it.  So….

LCP (standard or Custom)– SM-2 Sticky Holster

LCP (standard or Custom, with laser)– SM-3 Sticky Holster

Reverse side of the SM-3. Notice the slight bulge from the LaserLyte. But, there is plenty of give to fit it in there, properly.

Reverse side of the SM-3. Notice the slight bulge from the LaserLyte. But, there is plenty of give to fit it in there, properly.

If you are looking for a nice holster for pocket carry, or something for IWB during a quick trip to the corner store, you can’t do much better than the Sticky Holster.  I’ve also worn one all day with a bathing suit on and it stayed put IWB (no, you can’t swim with your LCP, but I didn’t think ahead).  Pick up one for your small or medium sized pistol and I think you’ll be very happy with the purchase (pun intended!)

–Hank

 

Note: this holster review has a little more “gun content” than our usual reviews.  We also free-formed it a little, compared to how we normally structure our reviews.  Drop us a line in the comments and let me know if you like it more, don’t care, or hate it like sand in your underwear.  I try to listen and improve as I go.  Thanks for reading!

–Hank

Coming Soon: Holster Options for a Kahr CT380

If you are interested in getting a Sticky Holster, you can use the links below, to find them on Amazon (free shipping with Prime).  If you use these links, it won’t cost you a penny more, but we’ll get a few cents to help keep the site up.  Every little bit helps and we appreciate it!

SM-2 Sticky Holster

SM-3 Sticky Holster

WAIT!  You aren’t an Amazon Prime member?  You can still use the links above, but did you know that Amazon Prime gives you free shipping on most products and unlimited streaming videos?  AND, you can get it free for 30 Days, with the link below.  That means, you could get free Prime and use it for free shipping on your holsters!  If you want to check it out, use our link below.  If you decide that Prime is right for you, we’ll get a few MORE cents to run our web site.  Thanks!

Get Free Shipping on Holsters with Amazon Prime!

 

 

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather
5 comments
Share

5 comments

  • Adam
    February 17, 2016 at 3:44 pm

    Hello, thanks for this great review. I have been researching the LCP Custom and am looking to purchase one as soon as I can find one locally. I had sights added to my P3AT 7 years ago, similar pattern to the LCP Custom. Finding a pocket holster that the rear sight didn’t hang up on was an issue back then and I am using an overly thick Desantis SuperFly without the flap since that was the only one that worked.

    Sticky Holster warns about this in their info sheet with the holster. Now that you’ve had this combo a while have you noticed the pistol hanging up in the holster when you have drawn from the pocket? Thanks, Adam

  • hank
    February 22, 2016 at 1:37 pm

    I haven’t had an issue with the LCP Custom and the Sticky Holster, although I can see the potential for it. On the Custom, the rear sights stick up a lot farther than on the standard LCP. However, the way the pistol sits in there, the sights are not up against the holster trim, so it pulls cleanly. On a standard LCP, I can’t see any way they would hang up. Still, the Sticky uses a heavily reinforced edge and as with any sewn edge, the potential exists to snag. It hasn’t been an issue with the LCP or the Kahr CT380, but make sure you have a good return policy where you buy it (hint, Amazon has such a policy and you can use my links in the store, to get there 😉
    –Hank

  • Adam
    February 22, 2016 at 9:09 pm

    Thanks for the reply Hank. I bought one of the stickholsters for my LCP Custom/Crimson Trace on monday and was found it was possible to get it to lock in if you pull up in the wrong direction. Anyway, a small strip of foam jammed in the bottom of the holster raised the pistol that 1/4″ or so to put the rear sight on the seam instead of under it. No problems now with the holster.

  • hank
    February 22, 2016 at 9:44 pm

    Cool. I suspect there are slight differences in the stitching, where one pistol might sit lower than another. My sights are right on the outer part of the seam, but if they were 3/16″ deeper, I can see how they might catch on the inside edge. Thanks for the tip, Adam!!

  • Comments are closed.

    Share this post with your friends