Any one who has considered the idea of carrying a firearm for protection, has had to look into holsters. Almost always, this ends up with a drawer full of unused holsters. The people over at Black Iron Holsters have made the job of choosing a holster a little bit easier with their ALLY series of inside the waistband (IWB) holster.
The Ally IWB holster is one of the most comfortable holsters I have worn. I am not sure exactly how to describe the ALLY, but think hybrid holster on steroids. The first thing you notice on the holster, is the padding on the back, or the side that rides against your body. This padding is an UnderArmor moisture wicking fabric sewn over perforated padding and then mounted on the flexible kydex core. The padded fabric is said to pull sweat away from the body and make for a cooler drier holster. I did notice that I didn't sweat as much on the holster backing when it was hot outside. But the holster did seem to feel warmer than some other types. The ALLY also doesn't seem to feel cold either, like some all kydex holsters do.
When they construct the holster, they use the above mentioned padding, but with some extras. They call it C-Pak. C-Pak adds in a flexible kydex core, 500 denier Cordura fabric, and the moisture wicking and padding mentioned above. All of this helps add to the comfort and usefulness of the holster. The whole holster, except the backing, has been wrapped in the Cordura nylon. This cordura wrapping actually reduces the effects of holster wear on the firearm by giving the firearm something besides the kydex to rub on. They also sew on a border around the whole holster. This border helps smooth the outer edges so that nothing can catch on the them.
When I mentioned hybrid style on steroids, here is what I mean. The holster is constructed with a large backing plate and then the outer holster is attached to it. But all of this is wrapped as mentioned above. They also put in a tension adjustment screw so that you can adjust it to your preference. The backing on my supplied holster has 3 holes for each clip, it has a front and rear clip. These holes make it possible to adjust for ride height and cant. Also the supplied nylon clips have 2 mounting screw options for even more adjustment. Even with the clips mounted in the same holes on the backing plate, the cant of the firearm is pretty noticeable. I did have a problem with the screws, that the clips are mounted to, coming loose. I put thread locker on them, but got some on the nylon clips. DON'T get threadlocker on the clips, it might make them crack and break like in my case. I emailed Black Iron and told them what I did, within a few days they had sent me new clips. I was just going to use some others I had around here since it was my fault they broke. So a big +1 for customer service.
Aside from this being a very comfortable holster, it is also very functional. This holster has a little bit of break in time associated with it, like 2-3 days. After that, I didn't really even notice it. One of the great features of the ALLY is that the holster mouth doesn't collapse when the pistol is removed. Thus making reholstering safer and easier. Holstering the pistol was a little strange at first, I kept wanting to here the audible click like most hybrid or kydex holsters. But it felt more like an all leather holster. Don't be worried about this holster printing either. It has a very smooth profile. I did notice that it is slightly thicker than some holster due to its padding and cordura, but the smooth profile made up for this. It is hard to notice this holster being worn. I usually only hide it under a T-shirt and that works well.
Now, the ALLY comes in the four different fabric colors listed below. But don't fret, they seem to make this holster for just about every popular, and even other not so popular handguns. Also with options for various weapon lights. If they don't list your handgun, their website says to contact them, which makes me think they will do their best to help you out. So if your in the market for a nice IWB holster, give Black Iron Holsters a look.
Firearms Insider Reviews - 8 Key Points
Claim to Fame:
Soft/Comfortable Inside the waistband kydex holster
FNBs (Features & Benefits of this product):
- C-Pak Backing
- Cordura wrapped
- Hand washable
- Made for each individual firearm
- 1.5" clips
- Adjustable for ride height and cant
- Tension adjustment
- Cerakoted hardware
- Made in U.S.A.
What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?
What others are saying?:
I received my holster 2 weeks ago and this is by far hands down the greatest holster i have ever used. It fits like a glove both on myself and for my glock. It is everything described and more, i am a delivery driver and spend the majority of the time on the road getting in and out of my truck. I can honestly say by the end of the day it was so comfortable i completely forgot i was wearing it by the end of my shift. I will be swapping out my Alien Gear holsters for my other two guns and will be ordering everything from you guys from now own. Its well worth the few extra bucks for something that is of this quality.
First of all let me say that my experience with customer service was exceptional, I had a lot of questions concerning which style of holster to purchase and what was going to work for me. The staff at Black Iron was very knowledgeable and evidently knew what questions to ask and how to explain things because this is the best fitting and most comfortable holster i have ever worn. If you have any doubts about buying one don't you will be blown away by these things.
Link to other reviews:
Nothing found while googling
MSRP = $79.95
I need it now! Availability:
Holster mouth stays open
Adjustable Cant and Ride height
Firearm options (lights, lasers, models)
Sewing of fabric looked poor (Not straight)
Clip mounting screws come loose (Maybe supply pre-threadlocked screws)
Score: 7.5 Good
Chad’s Favorite Link: U.S. Tactical Supply