“There is no real ending. It’s just the place where you stop the story.”

― Frank Herbert

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Mad at Uncle Mike's and other matters of grave importance.

If anybody knows of an outfit that makes leather shoulder rigs for the Walther P-38, I sure wish they would let me know.

I have the Uncle Mike's rig pictured on the right.  But it's just not first class. The straps tend to slide when you pick things up (like a 50 lb sack of feed), which leaves the gun off balance and maybe showing under your vest. It also puts a lot of pressure right on the base of your neck. That's not so bad for short interludes but it has started giving me a headache.

I could go back to my Galco shoulder holsters, but those are all for big hand guns and the weight is oppressive. Put a fully loaded M1911 in one hand, and a fully loaded Walther in the other, and you'll be amazed at the difference.



When I'm fiddling around outside, I can just carry a rifle.  Close to home I have a Mauser or an Enfield handy, because they are full powered and sturdy.  But if I am going out aways, for instance if I'm walking my property line, I take a mouse gun. I don't really like them, but again, they weigh so much less than a full sized battle rifle. Huffing and puffing through the stifling heat and humidity, that matters. It's especially important in some places where my land is steep.


Obviously, if I am going to town or somewhere else there are people, I can't lug a rifle. So I wear my trusty fishing vest of the many pockets.  It covers my shoulder holster, it's cool in the summer time, and I like all those pockets. I can put my wallet, my cell phone, my check book, spare magazines, my folding knife and other useful things in the vest pockets.  But not the shopping list. My wife is tired of me having to empty out all my pockets to find the shopping list in the store, because I forget just which pocket it went into.

My vest is many years old now and it is starting to get ripped here and there. I have been looking in Sportsmans Guide for a not so expensive replacement. The NRA store has some nice one's but the NRA store caters to the very well heeled.  A bit out of my price range for shopping purposes.

Sportsmans Guide is more of an "everyman's" emporium.  I'll find something there that suits me in the affordable range. The next vest I buy won't have quite so many pockets.



The ferrets had a very rowdy night, pushing the fireplace tool stand off the hearth and nearly giving me a heart attack in the process.  Somehow, one of them managed to climb up the wall, latch on to the satellite radio antenna, and bring it crashing down too.  Today they are sleeping, so for a little while it is quiet.  Ferrets can be challenging friends, from time to time.

Ferrets like boxes, and if there isn't room in the box for all, they just cram in to the maximum extent possible. When I took this picture, there were four ferrets in the box. The rear end and the head you see in the photo belong to two different ferrets. The tail identifies one of the slumbering crew as Ragnar. He suffers from "rat tail" on and off.  Usually ferret tails are bushy, like a raccoon.


It's finally nice and warm here, at least for the moment. This picture was taken in April. I sincerely hope that last winter was just an aberration, and not a harbinger of things to come!

24 comments:

  1. I hope you find what you need for the leather shoulder rig. When you do, you should buy a few of them. That way when one gives out, you have another.

    You would so love the local store we have here called Canfield's. It's a survival shop. They have military stuff, stuff for camping, scouts, archery, fishing, and more. I like to buy local when I can. I'd much rather support the little man, than the big one.

    Your ferrets sound like my kids with the box thing. We've made them many things out of big boxes, and they cram in it like sardines.

    Dental work? We'll see...the boys don't even have all their adult teeth. It's too early to tell. So far the bigger son has straight teeth. My husband never had any dental stuff done. His teeth a fine. It seems like everyone gets braces now a days.

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  2. Lisa, the hardest thing is finding a holster for an older gun. The manufacturers like Galco only do the most popular guns, and the Walther P-39 is not very common as a carry gun. So I have to use holsters that take more than one type, and those are not as satisfactory. I'll keep looking though.

    I would be ecstatic to plunder through a store like that. Unless I am willing to drive for several hours up into the North Carolina mountains, I do not have access to a survival shop at all. I have to buy what I need out of catalogs or on line.

    Big boxes are great. We made forts for the children in our living room when they were little kids.

    My dad had crossed front teeth. I had crossed front teeth. I got braces in 1963, when it was a process straight out of the Spanish Inquisition. It was more painful than anything I have experienced otherwise. Both my children inherited the crossed front teeth gene and had to have braces. Maybe you and your husband will be lucky, since neither of you had braces your children will probably not need them.

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  3. I have never owned a shoulder holster I liked... much anyway. I did buy one of those carry vests from SPortsmans guide a couple years ago. I think it was like 45 bucks and honestly it aint bad. It does bulge a bit with a full sized pistol in the top inside pocket but otherwise I could complain about it. I was smart enough to order one two sizes larger than I thought I needed though :)

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    1. You mean one of those with a built in pocket for the pistol? I never tried one because I don't see how you could get the pistol out in a hurry. Is that not a problem?

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    2. Other than having to pull the zipper down I can't imagine it being any slower than from a the holster on a chest rig. My hand slips in pretty fast and I just don't do upt he snap but I can't wear the vest with the zipper down and a pistol in the pocket.

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    3. Might work then. I don't carry with a round in the chamber, so I have to be able to access the weapon, rack the slide and aim in short order. I rely on positive situational awareness to give me the time I need but some of it depends on sheer luck.

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  4. To me most Uncle Mikes products have a niche as an affordable and fairly durable albeit not particularly ergonomic option for gear you rarely use. Don't want to carry a handgun around all day in their $15 el junko nylon OWB one size fits everything holster for sure. However for a handgun you rarely or never carry but want a holster for on general principle it is a lot more reasonable to get a $17 el junko nylon holster than a $80 Galco rig.

    Also I've thought in the past 2 each size of those cheapo loose enough to fit a half dozen models nylon holsters might not be a bad idea to put away. If things got ugly a lot of nightstand and truck handguns would suddenly be awkwardly stick in pockets and waistbands for want of a holster. Even an Uncle Mikes nylon rig on a Walmart belt beats no holster.

    IIRC I had an Uncle Mikes shoulder holster once and to be blunt I was not impressed.

    You might want to call Galco and see if they have a shoulder holster that fits the P-38 if they do not make a model just for it. Often even if it is not made specifically for it once you get to the right person they might just say "this other one pretty much fits." I think you can purchase just the holster and put it on a current setup to save $$$.

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    1. Uncle Mike's is affordable and not bad gear. I know I am always quoting the Russian proverb to the effect that"the best is the enemy of good enough" but I don't think it applies to shoulder holsters. I have been using the nylon rig for a long time but recently it has really started to irk me.

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  5. I like leather as much as the next guy, but I think youre going to have to go the Kydex route on this. Find one of the zillions of kydex holster guys and have them make up a kydex holster with the attachment points youd need to mount the holster to one of your existing shoulder holsters.

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    1. I guess that might be practical if I could find someone willing to do it. The Uncle Mike's rig and Galco's are utterly different so making that work would be difficult. I am considering having leathersmith I know just make a rig for the Walther. Then I could just slip the holster off the Uncle Mike's straps and use it like TOR said. Do you know a company that might want to try the conversion process you mentioned without wanting my first born child in return?

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    2. Well, it looks like the necessary hardware is just the two pieces of hardware that attach to the harness. The trick is to get those pieces. The easiest way, it looks like, is to order the cheapest accessory for your harness that utilizes those pieces and break it up for parts. The 'Off Side Tie Down' component has the two pieces of hardware and is $20. If Galco wont sell you the hardware this would be the easiest way to get it. After that, I'd hit the gun forums and just ask for a good kydex holstermaker who is willing to do some custom work...should be plenty out there. I usually buy off-the-rack so I cant speak to custom, but it seems like there are lotsa guys out there who do it. My buddy Oleg would probably know..I'll check with him and see if he can recommend someone.

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    3. I've got three recommendations for you:
      http://www.leathernecktactical.com/
      http://www.buybrownholsters.com/
      http://www.theholstersite.com/

      G'luck!

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    4. Thanks. I'll check those out. I sure don't want to go back to carrying a hand cannon.

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  6. Harry,

    (captaincrunch)


    I'm looking at smaller and lighter pistols (and something that is more weather resistant) I got my eye on maybe a Glock 41 (a little big) or maybe a Glock 21 (both .45)
    As per holsters, I prefer one of the cheap side holsters that I can loop a belt around. I have to admit that because I wear boardshorts most of the time,I cant carry concealed.
    Maybe I could use a fanny pack somehow. It would look funny, but work.
    The climate down here is too moist and hot with too much salt to wear pants or vest.

    I surfed again today and had a few more good rides. Lots of tourist are showing up for Memorial Day. I am really, really glad I am working nights so I miss out on most of the crowds and traffic.
    Harry,I have no desire to set foot on that "Socailist Nightmare" known as Hawaii. Imagine Detroit, Michigan as an island and you got Hawaii.

    Being white in Hawaii is a big disadvantage and as a tourist surfer, you will find yourself being harassed by Hawaiian natives, Somoans, Asians and other groups that are angry about being repressed and put on welfare for life. Yeah' there are a lot of white surfers that blend in, but they were born there and are easily more accepted into that culture.

    I would prefer Costa Rica, El Salvador or somewhere in that area on the Pacific side. The culture there is a little more hospitable to surfer tourist and if you leave others alone, chances are you will be left alone also.

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    1. I'm giving serious thought to Costa Rica. Maybe we'll be neighbours.

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    2. Hey Harry,

      (captaincrunch)


      Yeah' well at some point I may go (Costa Rica) If you want to be a neighbor of mine, check out the Pacific side. Maybe near the Nicoruguan border. There's a good surf spot where CIA was landed its called "Ollies Point" (a point break) As I understand it, the southwest coast of Costa Rica is nice I hear too.
      I prefer smaller more manageable waves so living in the central to southwest coast of Costa Rica may be the best.

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    3. My brothers have spent a lot of time looking in Costa Rica for a retirement site. Unfortunately we are in the middle of one of our periodic spats where we are not talking to each other so I have to wait until that blows over to learn anymore.

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  7. That looks a like a very old, very genuine, Colt CAR-15 in photo #2...skinny barrel, integral carry handle, no 'fence' around the mag release........

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    1. It's an SP1. I got it in the mid eighties and it had some age on then.

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  8. I own a pair of those UM shoulder holsters, one vertical carry like you show, the other horizontal. The horizontal is the one I prefer - I feel it less. Though in a T-shirt, the cordura will rub against the inside of your arm when hiking. Not a problem with a longer sleeved shirt. Would very likely show under a vest.

    I'm pretty sure it would work with your P38. Mine accomodates a Star PD and a Ruger 4 5/8" Blackhawk, two very different handguns yet the cordura fits them fine. The adjustable thumbbreak snap being key - one or the other handgun would flop around too much.

    Do you have a Tanker holster, the one putting the holster around 'left shirt pocket'? That one might fit your P38 as well. Concealed carry - not so much. I don't own a P38 but do own one of those inexpensive German Flectarn flap holsters. It fits my Tokarev 7.62x25 like it was made for it. Fwiw, if you own a Tok, that makes for a pretty slim carry pistol as well.

    Not sure if that helps you any - I hope it does. Have a good weekend.

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    1. My problem is concealed carry. I have the issue German hardshell holsters that came with the guns, but I need a decent concealed carry rig for the Walther. The problem with the Uncle Mike's rig is the shoulder straps slipping and changing the balance and positioning of the weapon.
      Odd you mention the Tokorov. I was just reading the new issue of Be Ready and there was a good article in it lauding the Yugoslavian version in 9mm as a good carry weapon. Thanks for the thoughts, I appreciate them.

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    2. I forgot to follow up on this thread - sorry.

      Norinco imported a 9mm / 7.62x25 model, you only needed to replace the barrel and (I think) the magazine to shoot. I recall there were some complaints that the 9mm feeding was a 'sometimes' thing. That Norinco of course has been on the 'naughty list' along with other Chinese imported firearms but you might come across one.

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  9. You must be able to trap ferrets like you do cats- put out a box and wait! That was an adorable photo. I see two structures in your other photo. One is your place and the other?? A barn or garage?

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    1. Kathy, they dote on boxes and plastic bags. I always worry they will suffocate, playing in plastic bags, but my wife says they can always tear their way out with their claws. I actually have several buildings here. One is the main house. One is a shop on the ground floor and a full apartment on the second floor. The third is a barn with a big bay and an enclosed, climate controlled storage area. It's a lot for just two people , probably too much, but I thought the kids would stay around the area when they moved off, and they didn't.

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