Custom Carry Concepts Shaggy AIWB for Ruger SR9c
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Here’s our second review and giveaway (drawing in May 2014)! If you’ve got an SR9c or SR40c, S&W M&P, or similar sized semi-auto, and you want to carry AIWB (appendix, inside waistband), you’ll be interested in this one. More holster reviews for Sigs, Glocks, Rugers, 1911s of different types, etc., are on the way!
Up now is the Shaggy, by Custom Carry Concepts. I’m going to put a link here: Custom Carry Concepts , so you can find them, but know that it is NOT SPONSORED. In other words, we receive no compensation for the reviews. That lets us to give an unbiased review. According to my order form, this holster is for:
Shaggy, AIWB | $69.25 |
Orientation: Right Hand
Make And Model: Ruger, SR9C
Belt Clip: Snap Loops +$2.75
Belt Width: 1-1/2
Backing: Leather Comfort Layer +$10.00
The holster cost me $82, with a discount code (I’ll see if I can set something up for our readers) and shipping was $5.80. I found out about the Shaggy when searching far and wide for a Kydex IWB, suitable for appendix carry.
It seems that nowadays, there are hundreds of people making Kydex holsters. Most of them are the hybrid type, with leather on one side and kydex on the other, for IWB concealed carry. The Shaggy is a little different, in that it is a formed Kydex pocket, that wraps around the gun. Since I planned to carry this up front, I sprung for the leather backing that takes some of the harshness out of the Kydex edges. Additionally, the guys at Custom Carry Concepts have rolled the bottom edges inward, so it doesn’t dig into you when sitting down. There are different belt loop options, including a Kydex loop and their “standard” clip. That one is not suggested for nylon belts, which I sometimes wear, so I went with the snap loops (see my note about the belt, at the bottom of this post). The snap loops also (in my opinion) allow for just enough movement that you can put the holster in a comfortable spot when driving or sitting.
Concealability and Carry:
I ran my 1.5 inch belt through the slots, with no trouble. Custom Carry Concepts lets you choose from 1.25, 1.5, or 1.75 inch belt widths. The snap loops let you remove the holster without taking off your belt.
Appendix carry offers certain advantages in draw speed and comfort (at least while standing or walking). We won’t debate the Pros and Cons of carrying there, since this is not a tactical review. We’ll assume you’ve already decided on appendix carry and want a good rig for it. I WILL say that I personally, am not comfortable carrying a striker fired pistol over my Johnson, unless it has a safety. Training is everything and you may be perfectly comfortable with a Glock up there, but I chose the Ruger SR9c, for this position, as it has a safety. Fewer worries about an errant shirt end, giving me a quick sex change. Again, my personal preference.
Comfort wise, the leather backing and rolled edges do a great job of making this the best AIWB holster that I’ve used. That said, it isn’t the best position for every body type. Walking around is fine, but when I sit down, I find I have to “adjust” a little for the best comfort. If you have “fresh from Basic Training” abs, this should work great for you. For my body type….there are more comfortable options. However, that is less a reflection on the holster than it is on my gut and the relatively fat grip of the SR9c. I’m going to try one of these with one of my slimmer pistols, which should be a better option for me.
What really surprised me about this rig was how well it conceals. Maybe because my belly creates a little ledge for the shirt to hang from, but I found that I could conceal with even a relatively snug tee, left outside the pants. An over shirt would make it impossible to see the gun. You’ll tend to bend at the knees, more than the waist, but even when bending over, or reaching for something, you’ll find it stays very well hidden. I really can’t say that about a paddle or belt holster, with just a tee.
Retention: Friction only, as with most appendix carry holsters, but enough to hold it in place. With the 27+ oz weight of the SR9c (loaded), there is no danger of it popping out. Plus, appendix carry has a huge advantage if you are worried about someone sneaking up behind you, to grab your piece. The gun is easily protected and you will be less likely to “thump” it on something. Drawing the gun is smooooth and fast. You’ll want to practice plenty, to draw safely from this position, but I can’t imagine a faster location to draw FROM.
What We Liked:
Carries well, conceals well, retains well. The thickness of the Kydex and the quality of the craftsmanship is exceptional. If you are looking for an AIWB holster, this is the best I’ve tried out of 5 or 6 of them. Everything else pinched, bent, flexed, or moved. The Shaggy held fast.
What We Didn’t Like:
This is a rarity, but I could not find a single bitch about this holster. Any downsides were strictly my preference in holsters and not a factor of the holster. You’ll want to keep in mind that I sprung for the leather backing and the loops, so changing either one might change the experience. But, if you are looking for a super holster and it doesn’t bother you to have 115+ grains of JHP pointed at the family jewels, this holster is for you! You will be happy with your purchase!
Conclusion (except for the gunporn, below):
If you want to try AIWB……train. A mistake with a paddle holster might put a bullet through your butt cheek, but here…….ugh, I don’t even want to think about it. Train and train some more. However, appendix carry has some real advantages. The speed is amazing and you are never really in an undefendable position, with one hand behind you. Plus, the “tell” is less, as you reach for your gun. Hey, there must be a reason why you see it in so many holdup videos! If you’ve decided on appendix carry, the Shaggy by Custom Carry Concepts is the way to go. You won’t be disappointed.
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We are not a gun review site, but I think that we should at least add a little info about each gun used in the reviews, because weight can have a lot to do with how the gun carries in each holster. Today’s review used my Ruger SR9c, in black. With 10+1 rounds of 9mm, I feel decently armed. It weighs in at 23 oz empty, so it is right in the middle range of similar pistols. The trigger break is crisp, but the reset is near the front, so there are faster follow up shots to be had with other pistols. That said, for me the follow up shot is more about recoil than it is about trigger reset. Maybe as my skills develop, it will be a more important factor. The SR9c has a nice blend of features. Adjustable rear sight, 17 round spare mag (unless you live in one of the police states) and a 10 round mag for carry. All in a nice plastic box. Plus, the aforementioned safety.
Say what you will about having one more thing to worry about, but a safety is a nice feature to have if you want to carry it off body, or appendix. The SR9c was the first “modern” pistol that I purchased a few years back and it is still the best of its type, in my opinion. A good compromise (every pistol is) of comfort, weight, concealability, and capacity. Oh, and it can easily put em’ in a 2.5 inch circle at legal distances. Probably better, but that’s all I can do with it….If you are looking for your first carry piece, you can do worse than the SR9c. Disclaimer: my family owns Ruger stock. We bought it because they make kick ass products at an excellent price. I’m sure they will continue to do so.
Notes about our Reviews:
Please look at our “Categories” section and read the About info. There, you can see some photos of my “body type” (no, I’m not naked, nobody needs to see that shit). I’m a middle-aged guy with a little bit of flab. Not a whale, but the six-pack abs passed by about 300 cases ago. You need to have a look, because the comfort of any holster system is strongly dependent on body type and any review will be biased accordingly.
Next, the belt. Hold the “get a proper gun belt” comments. I’ve got one. But, it’s hard to see where the holster starts the belt stops, when I use a 1.5 inch black leather strap with no markings. So, I’m using a 5.11 Nylon belt, which provides a nicer background for the photos. For that reason, I don’t comment on belt sag, because, some of it is the dang belt!
Please comment and add your experiences with this or any other holster for this model of firearm