Ok, it's been about 10 days now and it's time to look at how the Fugly from Dragon Leather Works is doing...in that time, it's made one round trip from Seattle back to New York and back...
The picture to the left depicts why - while over all an entirely splendid IWB holster, the muzzle end of the holster was attempting to wear a hole in my distinctly un-svelte hip.
One of the critical features of any holster is that it be comfortable - if it's not comfortable, the owner won't use it - and if it's the only holster, the owner will leave their gun at home rather than having a frisky masochistic exercise complete with abrasions, welts, blisters, and other fun options. Dennis not only knows this, but it's darned near his mantra.
The welts, not a desired or intended design feature, led to a wee chat with Dennis of Dragon Leather Works and it was decided the holster would visit him for some modifications.
On Monday afternoon, the holster returned to its' rightful place in Seattle, and to continued testing/use. A wee small change had taken place.
Please note the pic on the right. Dennis and I had independently come to the same conclusion - the problem I was having was born in how much pressure was being concentrated in specific points on my hip, raising the unwelcome welts.
We both figured that if the pressure was distributed across a broader area, that things would get rapidly less painful. To the right, you see the result - the bottom half of the holster now sports a "paddle" distributing the pressure from the outward leaning gun across a much broader area on my hip, and after three days, I'm not seeing any adverse affects.
The holster is probably the most comfortable I've worn to date, and as a certain recent visitor to Seattle points out, the ability it provides (because of the rigidity of the holster) to re-holster one-handed is an amazing convenient thing, and according to wiser heads than mine, tactically useful.
Let's take a look at the back of the holster. I'm guessing if folks order this variant from square one (rather than realizing later that their physique makes it a fine notion) that Dennis will build the holster back from a single piece of leather rather than the add-on second piece that works the magic.
Looking at the back, however, gives us the chance to look at some of the workmanship that we wouldn't normally see, that (I suspect) will see the holster outlasting me, and possibly outlasting the Bersa.
Not only did Dennis attach the second paddle firmly enough I just don't see it going anywhere, he thought through the implications of the two-piece leather back design and abraded down the border between the two pieces, where otherwise another pressure point would likely have formed - a sign of not just just a craftsman, but one equipped with a brain and a willingness seen far too seldom these days to think through the logical consequences to design and engineering choices.
On the right you see the finished product (hey, if it WAS inside the waistband, you'd not see all it's glorious features!), ready for use, with the Bersa .45 proudly featured.
I'm eagerly awaiting my OWB Talon (Vicious Circle Edition) from Dennis, and the accompanying magazine carriers.
If Dennis goes along with it, I'm suggest he designate this model the Fugly-FA - for those of us who waived goodbye to boyish and slender a long time ago and have darned little hope of seeing those features return.
The sturdy and economical Fugly at $55.00 is a heck of a bargain, and with the Bersa .45 running between $350 - $380, the combination gets you out the door for not much over $400 - not a bad price for an effective self-defense combination.