Hybrid IWB for M357-A1

Discussion in 'Holsters' started by LHD, Mar 9, 2007.

  1. LHD

    LHD New Member

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    Finally received my M357-A1...love it! Very sweet! Need a concealment holster. Couldn't find one.... well actually I did, but can't wait that long....impatient.
    It may be crude (only my second attempt), but it was cheap to make, has good retention, very comfortable, and I didn't have to wait 8 weeks! I built in only four beers...which was a couple hours. Going into production soon....yeah right. Check it out.

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  2. BulletBait

    BulletBait New Member

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    :shock: DETAILS MAN! :shock:

    Where did you get the parts?
    How do you make one?
    What tricks to get it so nicely done?

    Don't hold back now![​IMG]
     

  3. LHD

    LHD New Member

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    BulletBait, you're too kind.

    I purchased the sheet Kydex (.060" thk) from http://www.knifekits.com, the leather (8 weight) and rivets from Tandy Leather. You'll also need a Heat Gun. It's nothing more than a hair dryer on steroids. We use 'em at work to shrink heatshrink tubing on wires and such. KnifeKits.com has them, Ebay, etc... $20.00 - 40.00 range.

    Cut Kydex to desired width in a "Tee" shape and position on top of your pistol (smooth side down), heat with heatgun until you see it start to droop. Don't worry, it will NOT stick to your gun or the foam, unless you heated it up until it's molten. I pressed it down with some 1/2" thk foam I bought at Walmart. It's Camping Bedding material... comes in a roll for $5.00. Blue in color. I placed a board on top of the foam and had my girlfriend sit on it until cooled. I can't help you with the girlfriend part, unless your in the Dallas area....possibly. Then I heated the sides and pressed them flat (where the rivets are). I heated the "Tee" section and folded it down and curled up the end using some pre-cut aluminum pieces to form it's shape about the same size as a belt.

    You might need to re-heat the holster afterwards and press Kydex down in trigger guard or ejection port with your thumb (wear gloves...it burns) to get better retention.

    Trim edges with shears, sand smooth, cut leather to size, rivet it place.

    Enough details? If you want, I'll make you one. It's kinda fun. I estimate materials at around $15.00, labor at $25.00/hr x 2hrs + 4 beers = Oh forget it. Just pay for materials and beer. Later.

    Check out my first attempt below...a Crossbreed copy for my Kel-Tec.

    [​IMG]
     
  4. Wulf

    Wulf Premium Member

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    Xcellent LH* 8)

    That's the spirit, Bro. :p Someday, there will be more aftermarket parts available for the M- and S-A1 owners, but until then, its innovative people like you and BT makin' things happen for us all. U Rock, Dude! Chalk up another victory for Steyrclub members. Hava great weekend. :)

    Wulf <-- eyein' 'is ol'lady's new hairdryer with wheels spinnin'
     
  5. BulletBait

    BulletBait New Member

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    Thanks LHD :D
    I've got a 45acp Baby Eagle that needs a IWB holster bad.
     
  6. LHD

    LHD New Member

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    Hmm....Let me ask around and see if any of my buddies have that same pistol I can borrow for an hour or so to mold the Kydex, and I'll whip one out. I'll advise soon.
     
  7. BulletBait

    BulletBait New Member

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    I meant I plan to make it myself :oops:

    I'm left handed, have love handles and like to carry odd guns.
    Not a good combo for finding CCW holsters.

    My current rig is tucker's "answer" with a Colt 1911 Officer's, but I want to try other guns without paying $120 a pop :shock:
     
  8. bigtaco

    bigtaco Active Member

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    that is some serious nice looking work.

    i think you might carve out a niche if you made some of those.

    you could do a holster the way you just did. then fill the holster with great stuf spray foam insulation and make a mold. could even make a two piece mold and clamp the two pieces together as they cooled. unless your girl likes her lot in life as a kydex weight!!

    could make a mold of both sides of the pistol, then fold the kydex in half and get it to wrap around the "plug" (inner mold) and use each half of the outside to create a wrap around design. then you could use adjustable tension screws as used on all holsters. madecov knows what these bad boys are called. that would give you very positive and adjustable tension

    have to check the temp. range on great stuff, but i think it would take the heat reliably.

    fire it up!!! we gotta roll our own steyr accessories!!!

    think you can get kydex with a carbon fibre pattern. you know how techie gun types love that carbon look!!!

    or you could finish off the beers and snag a nap. whatever you feel like!!!

    nice work though.
     
  9. LHD

    LHD New Member

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    BulletBait, good luck....I'm sure you can make one. It's not hard at all.

    BigTaco, thanks. I have several Kydex holsters as you described...the ones that wrap around the entire gun with adjustable tension screws, and you're idea for a mold is excellent. Hmmm...the wheels are spinning. Thanks. I've got some ideas brewing now....

    My poor little Kel-Tec P11 has surface rust on it from wearing that type of holster because sweat gets on it and the Kydex has left bruises from carrying all day. The leather backing, I hope, will shield my pistol from sweat.... we'll see, it hasn't got that hot yet here in Texas. I can say that at the end of the day so far, I no longer have bruises or any discomfort because the leather is soft and forgiving.

    I did find sheets of Carbon Fiber patterned Concealex that looks awesome. I may order some and give it a try.

    Take care.
     
  10. bigtaco

    bigtaco Active Member

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    put the beer down and meet the holster demand that seems to be ever present on this board!!!

    i'll take a carbon patterned competition holster for the m9 that is designed to maximize the ipsc regulations regarding distance from hip. straight cant please.

    send me a holster and a bill!!!
     
  11. LHD

    LHD New Member

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    Home-made Holster for M357-A1

    OK BigTaco, here's my first attempt at a Belt holster. I know it's not pretty, needs some refinement. Point me in the right direction.

    I know I'll need to tighten-up the belt loop because you can see daylight through the tunnel/loop when worn, which I found out is an IDPA violation...no big deal...easy to fix.

    Please advise.

    LHD

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  12. bigtaco

    bigtaco Active Member

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    no concern about idpa regulations. i'll use the c-tac IF i shoot idpa.

    that looks pretty good to me!!

    have you tried it out? no chance of pulling the holster up with the gun? it looks like a very nice gripping claw on the bottom of the belt.

    to nick pick aesthetics- the big curve from the trigger guard to the muzzle... i wouldn't mind that being more of a straight line. but if this doesn't work with the thermo-molding process, i could learn to like it.

    also, adjustable tension would be nice if you can buy those fittings anywhere. madecov would know where.

    not having worn it, my biggest "want" is standoff from my hip so that i can quickly and easily get my thumb between the gun and my body.

    production division allows 50mm between gun and shooter's body. that's almost 2 inches. i don't think i need two inches, but an inch would be nice.

    it looks like the thumb can grip the frame without holster interference.

    very nice overall!!!
     
  13. Netfotoj

    Netfotoj Premium Member

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    How did I miss this thread since March? Musta been asleep at the switch. A holster maker for M357-A1 and Kel-Tec P-11! Pinch me, I'm dreaming.

    How about a left-handed OWB PF-9 holster, would you consider home-brewing up one of those? I let my P-11 go to get the PF-9 and so far, she's crammed into a pocket holster. Can't do IWB, too much of me inside the belt already.

    I suspect anything made for the P-11 would work fine for the PF-9, too. Only difference is it's a wee bit slimmer. Now if I could only make me slimmer, too. :mrgreen:
     
  14. LHD

    LHD New Member

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    I'll get it refined. I did try it out many times. I can draw the pistol and re-holster very quick. The incomplete belt loop at the bottom grabs the belt securely and does not lose grip, however I'm not happy with it's appearance. I'll work on it. I think I'll remove a little more material in the front so the muzzle will clear the holster sooner. I can also remove the big curve from the trigger guard to muzzle as you suggested. I copied this design from another manufacturer. I do have adjustable tension hardware, just used this rivet temporary to grind the Kydex. When complete I'll drill it out and replace with either the adjustable hdw or a permanent rivet.

    Thanks for your input.....back to the garage I go.
     
  15. LHD

    LHD New Member

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    Netfotoj, here's a better IWB Holster for the P-11 I'm making now (pants and belt not included).

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    I can comfortably wear mine with my large gut. I just position it in the small of my back...kinda over my right butt cheek, or on the right side if I'm riding my motorcycle.

    If I had access to a PF-9 I'd hook you up. I don't think the P-11 holster would fit. There's quite a bit difference at the front of the frame.