Shoulder holster options


December 23, 2013, 09:57 PM
I am looking for input on shoulder holster options. I will be carrying a full size Kimber tactical custom II. Comfort obviously is a concern. I definitely want a single or double mag pouch also. Any experiences out there?

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December 23, 2013, 10:10 PM
Galco Miami Classic. But, I don't think there is any such thing as a "comfortable" shoulder holster for a gun this size. And while the magazines on the other side may balance things out some, you'll probably find that you neck and shoulders take a beating.

December 23, 2013, 10:18 PM
What he said.

At last count, I have 5 shoulder holsters hanging in the gun room closet.
They are for everything from S&W J & K Frames, to SIG P-232, to S&W 9mm, to 1911.

I can't remember the last time I used one.

They are uncomfortable, hard on the shoulders, hot & plaster your shirt to you in the summer, or under winter coats, and just never to my liking.

Why I kept buying them to try again & again through the years thinking the next one would work better then the last one?

I have no idea now???


December 23, 2013, 11:11 PM
Perhaps comfortable was an incorrect term. This would be my first shoulder rig. I appreciate the info guys

December 23, 2013, 11:17 PM
I just checked out the Miami Classic. It looks great. Does anyone make a design where the handgun sits more vertically? Or is that just not possible with a shoulder holster

December 24, 2013, 07:09 AM
RCModel.... Where did your find the shoulder holster for your Sig 232?

Thanks in advance....

December 24, 2013, 08:11 PM
Galco is the best IMO. if your on a budget the classic lite is an excellent option

Longhorn 76
December 24, 2013, 08:39 PM
Andrews Monarch. When adjusted properly, I can wear it all day, and don't know it is there.

December 24, 2013, 10:01 PM
I have one for my double stack 1911 that I carry while hunting. I wanted a shoulder rig because I got tired of my rifle taking a beating on my pistol when it was on my hip and my rifle over my shoulder on a sling.

I had a local company CCS Gunwear out of Yakima Washington build the rig. We discussed a lot about the set up and wound up with the pistol vertical and two mags horizontal. It took a little getting use to the extra weight on my shoulders but had the pistol and two mags on me for 4 days nonstop with no complaints. I would highly recommend checking out his work, lifetime warranty on everything and all handmade, hand stitched. He has a lot of pictures of his work on Facebook and can be reached at

December 24, 2013, 11:58 PM
Nickb45, I really like that set up a lot. I'll check him out. As far as galco us concerned I found their VHS to be about ideal. The reason I prefer it over the Miami Classic is simply because it is of vertical design which will make the full size 1911 somewhat more concealable.

December 25, 2013, 12:31 AM
Nickb45, I really like that set up a lot. I'll check him out. As far as galco us concerned I found their VHS to be about ideal. The reason I prefer it over the Miami Classic is simply because it is of vertical design which will make the full size 1911 somewhat more concealable.

I had him do wider straps over my shoulders to help with the weight. But like I said I had this on for 4 days straight hiking and hunting. 15 rounds in the gun and 28 on my right side... It's not a light set up, but it was comfortable even with a pack on and a model 700 over my shoulder. I had this made for hunting but have been wearing it more as the weather gets colder, it conceals pretty good under a Carhartt vest.

December 25, 2013, 02:24 AM
I use a Galco Miami Classic all the time. My problem isn't comfort, it's concealing it. Crockett made it look so easy with a linen jacket.

I use a lot of rigs for 1911s that most people call 'uncomfortable', I never seem to mind. I might be conditioned to the idea that if I carry full-size, I just accept whatever I have to do to make it work.

December 25, 2013, 11:21 AM
Carried almost daily for 17 yrs.

Depending upon your physique, a horizontal rig can still conceal a substantial weapon.

I am larger than most normal sized people and the weapon pictured is a commander length… (4-1/4” barrel), but I think you’ll find that the ‘butt’ of the weapon is what will ‘print’ if anything. The one pictured is a double stack and presents no problem (for me).

Still, there is no question that a vertical rig will conceal better.

You might wish to compare which orientation is most comfortable for you to ‘draw’ from.

Also, consider if you can get to your weapon using your weak hand only.


December 25, 2013, 11:58 AM
Crocket only wore it for the scenes where he needed a firearm. If you look more closely he often appears on screen not wearing the holster. And, he likely took it off between takes.

December 25, 2013, 01:55 PM
I will follow up with Nickb. I read a post by him on another forum and decided to order one for myself. I was told how uncomfortable shoulder holsters are and how not useful. Well that may be for others or for other shoulder holsters, but mine has worked out great. I had major knee surgery in September and have been in a full length cast or brace since then. The only way I can ride in a vehicle is to be across the back seat of my truck. (My wife has to drive me everywhere including back and forth to work.) I have worn my CCS Gunwear shoulder holster around the house and several trips to Kalispell and back ( 45 miles one way and several hours there) and it has been very comfortable with a full sized 1911 and two extra mags. Check him out. He will work with you and do custom work.

December 25, 2013, 04:06 PM
I would buy an Alessi bodyguard. I've had one before for the Detonics Combat Master I had. Very comfortable and concealable. The gun hangs almost horizontal with the butt a little lower than the muzzle. There is no thumb break for 1911-style guns. A quick release snap through the trigger guard self-releases when the gun is somewhat forcefully jerked from the holster. Secure and works well-and one less thing you have to think about when the chips are down.

January 18, 2014, 12:12 PM
I am considering a shoulder holster for my daily carry as well. I'm a large framed man with plenty of love handles making an iwb seem to be rather uncomfortable. To complicate the matter, I work at a desk but I'm up and down a lot and do a lot of reaching down (making my shirt ride up a lot) and I drive 30 minutes one way every day. So I spend a lot of time sitting, concealing Iwb seems like it would be rather challenging for me.
I feel the shoulder option is my best bet, regardless if what I choose, I'll have to alter my wardrobe. I currently am business casual, polos, in tucked button downs, etc.
Will a shoulder rig conceal under something to this extent?
Or is a jacket or vest pretty much standard?

January 18, 2014, 01:52 PM
Jacket , vest, unbuttoned size too big Hawaiian shirt :blulaugh:

When I conceal with a shoulder rig i always wear some kind of jacket or vest, unzipped.

January 18, 2014, 09:05 PM
I don't typically wear vests and jackets are out due to my hot nature. Given my business casual dress code, a lot or most of the vests marketed to conceal carry culture arent up to snuff. Can anyone recommend a high end designer or dress type vest that works to conceal?
I'm not asking for a Ralph Lauren knock off, just something appropriate for the office environment.
Surely someone has created a business for high end concealment clothes. Please tell me its so. Lol.
Sorry, I fill a strange and unusual niche in the market.
I could just dress into the 3 Piece suits but then I would be over done. It's a dilemma for me.

January 21, 2014, 12:24 AM
Any recommendations as far as manufacturing? Other than Andrews, Galco, Desantis.
I've decided my carry method now I'm looking for my rig. U really liked the Monarch but I'm struggling with the price point. Hoping to find a quality knock off.

January 21, 2014, 08:46 AM
I get my shoulder Holsters from Michaels of Oregon. They are easy to modify with a pinch bolt if you have to to get a more custom shape. Try and get a leather holster for Ortiges or 1905 if you want to carry two guns you can simply mount another holster on the off side and be a two gunner.

January 22, 2014, 05:24 AM
When learning about and shopping for a shoulder holster last year, I built a web page to hold the pictures. Later I went back and made it into a web page:

It's not an exhaustive list of shoulder holsters, just representative of each type.

A friend of mine wears an Uncle Mike's nylon holster against his skin, with a regular button-up shirt over it. He said the nylon was more comfortable than leather, and easily washable.

January 22, 2014, 07:56 AM
Any recommendations as far as manufacturing? Other than Andrews, Galco, Desantis.
Mitch Rosen


Del Fatti

High Noon

El Paso Saddlery

Black Hills Leather

Tauris Holsters

January 22, 2014, 08:03 AM
I use a Galco Jackass rig on a fairly regular basis with my Glocks. Very comfortable.

January 22, 2014, 08:00 PM
Thanks JTQ, I'll check those out.

January 22, 2014, 08:30 PM
A double Alessi Rig ...................................... (

February 16, 2014, 03:09 AM
I've always liked the shoulder holster carry concept. I have been carrying CCW for the better part of fifty years using most methods. After trying many commercial shoulder rig types over the years, I now use Survival Sheath holsters:

and mag carriers on the Galco SII leather harness. I use this rig for Glock, Sig 239, 1911 Commander and Ruger (SP101 revolver) handguns. I think kydex is the ideal material for a shoulder holster. It allows a pull thru draw with good retention and is sweat proof and thin. (I have never understood why a holster that is meant to be concealed is often very bulky)

Certainly there are trade offs in using a shoulder holster. For me they are less than other carry methods. This type of carry requires training in presentation technique and retention methods but IMO no more so than other methods if one is realistic.

I like the ability to have my arms crossed (a posture of resolve, not aggression) with my hand gripped on a full size defensive handgun without showing it until/if necessary. There are many "social" situations where I can envision assuming this posture would be acceptable whereas motioning towards drawing or actually presenting the firearm would be unacceptable.

February 19, 2014, 01:46 PM
I actually prefer to carry a full size gun in a shoulder holster when I go on long car trips. It's more comfortable as I don't have a gun digging into my ribs and it keeps the gun at the ready and away from the seat belt.

I find it kind of uncomfortable to walk around wearing one all day, but I generally keep my 1911 in a vertical "tanker" style shoulder holster when I'm in the car.

February 19, 2014, 09:28 PM
Ditto on the Alessi mine & Glock 19....

February 20, 2014, 01:14 PM
IMHO there is only one choice in a shoulder rig and that is Galco Miami classic

February 26, 2014, 09:11 AM
The triplek rig is very nice. It is like the galco holster system, but with very wide straps for my broad shoulder build.

February 26, 2014, 09:13 AM
A double Alessi Rig ...................................... (
goog looking rig. Last man standing anyone!

March 3, 2014, 02:16 AM
I've not had the chance to try one of the Alessi "pull through" holsters, but the snap-in-the-trigger-guard retention system looks interesting.

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