Dirty Harry Shoulder Holster (With Video)
The N frame Smith, with a 4″ or 6″ barrel was commonly carried in a belt holster, either on a police duty belt for law enforcement, or in a field holster for hunters. There were some shoulder holsters available; but these tended to be intended for field use over a jacket, and were not designed for comfort or concealment. So who made a concealment holster, back in 1972, that offered a fast draw, and reasonable comfort? Lawman Leather Goods did. Even the producers of Dirty Harry felt the Lawmen Leather Goods shoulder holster was the best on the market for their fictional Inspector Harry Callahan.
The holster is deserving of comment, as it was quite an advanced design, it incorporates a number of features. The most significant was the use of a bit of spring steel to permit the gun to be securely held, while offering a very fast draw. This was done in combination with a, then new, open fronted holster design, producing what has come to be called the clamshell holster. Holsters have traditionally been designed to have the pistol pulled straight out of the top. This is a natural enough design; but offers certain disadvantages for the shoulder holster. The main disadvantage of a traditional top draw, in a shoulder holster, is that it tends to make the draw exaggerated, and very circular. This costs a great deal of speed, and can also make the gun liable to snag. The clamshell design allows the gun to pivot, and be drawn straight out. This holster features a cut out for the revolver cylinder, allowing it to be a bit thinner, and also giving the holster a better and more secure grip on the gun. Some latter models incorporated a pouch for speedloaders, in the side opposite the gun. In the Movies, Dirty Harry simply carried three speed loaders in his jacket pocket giving him a total of 24 rounds, inclusive of the cartridges loaded in the Revolver’s cylinder.
Due to the collector mentality, the original holsters are more expensive than the guns which they carry. A original Dirty Harry holster can cost $500-$1000, if it is in pristine condition. Even James Bond uses Lawman Leather goods Shoulder Holsters to hold his PPK. The good news is that you do not have to pay that much you can obtain one new that is actually better than the original that is designed specifically for your gun, they make them for ever size, model and caliber.
Lawman Leather Goods also manufactures the S.T.U. These Holsters are tough and you will work a life time to try and wear one out. The STU has the thickest leather harness in the world: 9 oz. The S.T.U.™ is designed for use by outdoors man Police & Military in severe and abnormal conditions, with no concern under these conditions where blood or other fluids might come into contact with the holster or harness. Whether you pack a badge, a patch from one of the Armed Forces, or you punish your equipment on your outdoor adventures the S.T.U. is probably the best piece of equipment you can buy to protect your handgun in these situations. I have used a lot of holsters and I have to say without reservation this is the best shoulder holster I have ever owned.
Copyright © 2010 by Steven L. Doran All rights reserved under international and Pan-American copyright conventions. No part of this article may be reproduced or utilized in any form or by any means without written permission from the author Steven L. Doran.
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