Preacher says, "My advice to you is to get yourself a gun and learn how to use it."

Saturday, March 5, 2016

Alessi PCH (Professional Carry Holster) IWB for a Glock 19

DISCLAIMER: As always at this blog site, this product review is simply a good old-fashioned campfire chat; this is not an opinion on what I feel you should or should not purchase or what you should be using.  What does or does not work for me could be many country miles away from your tastes and needs.  All products I review for this blog are purchased at retail price by me.  I do not accept payment, discounts, "freebies," products on loan, demon alcohol, drugs, probation, parole, Presidential Pardons, or sexual favors for doing any review.  



When a handgun (such as the G19) is already as thick as a cold war era bomb-shelter brick, the leather artisan's challenge is to NOT design a holster that makes the pistol even more unwieldy.   Done properly, an IWB holster should have an almost magical slimming effect on a big fat ugly geometrically offensive handgun.  The Alessi PCH is very light and thin while maintaining surprising rigidity; no reinforing leather or metal is used to hold the mouth of the holster open to aid in reholstering.  Will this holster maintain the ability to stay open after some seriously sweaty summertime IWB use?  Well folks, I'm going to do my best to live long enough to find out first-hand; stay tuned for updates.

This holster was purchased brand new from Brownells.  The following is a copy and paste from the Brownells website:

Super-Fitting, Handmade, Top-Grade Gunleather That'll Last A Lifetime

Each holster is individually handmade from top-grade leather for a superb made-for-your-gun fit you can depend on. They look great, last a lifetime, and are available in a variety of styles to fit your pistol and your style of carry. Meticulously hand-fitted to the contours of the gun to ensure secure retention, with a molded sight channel that protects the front sight and the holster from unwanted wear. All materials made in the USA. Requires no break-in*. Nylon thread stitching with double-stitched stress points and back-tacked ends for years of service. An extremely comfortable inside-the-waistband holster, the Professional Carry Holster features a 15° forward cant to aid in quick presentation and easy one-handed re-holstering. Designed to wear just behind the hip with an extended stabilizing tab that helps distribute weight and prevent uncomfortable rubbing. Compact, double belt loop with snap-flaps let you install the holster without taking off your belt.
*NOTE:  The holster that I received did require a substantial amount of time and effort for me to break-in.  Throughout all of my years of being a holster collector and firearms hobbyist, this particular brand new holster was perhaps the most stubborn for me to break-in than any other.  It must have shrunk down substantially sometime after being manufactured at Alessi; at first, my slim little Glock 43 even felt snug inside the holster.  The break-in took substantial time, patience, and muscle; a few times the holster locked so firmly on my G19 that I worried that I might have no choice but to call in the jaws-of-life.   Why did I not just return the holster to Brownells?  Well, it became personal between me and this here holster, and by golly I just had to win.  The holster now fits exactly the way I like.  Seriously, if my hands were any more arthritic than they currently are, I would not have been able to put in the man-days required to work this holster into a proper fit.  Care must be exercised in breaking-in a holster; they are much easier to ruin than most folks can imagine; do NOT get creative with oils, steam, etc.  The next time that I run across uber-arrogant gun-leather, especially with my hands in the condition that they are in, I'll have little choice but to send it back to the vendor for refitting, replacement, or a refund (which is why dealing with classy outfits like Brownells is good protection for consumers).  


The following was copy and pasted from the Alessi website:

Product Description

The PCH or Professional Carry Holster. The PCH is quite possibly the most comfortable IWB available today, due to its unique construction, the holster is thin, while still allowing the mouth to remain open for one handed reholstering. The PCH has a 15º forward cant. This holster was designed for wear just behind the hip.
The PCH has a stabilizing wing that helps distribute the weight along the body. The holster’s hand molded sight channel protects the front sight.
The PCH holster had a 15º cant. This makes for a very fast draw. The belt loops can be interchanged to allow for most width belts.
Manufactured by Alessi Holsters
Each Holster is Hand Made in the U.S.A



This side of the PCH IWB holster goes away from the carrier's body.  The belt loop straps use very high quality directional snaps; these snaps will not let go accidentally.   In order to keep things as thin as possible, the straps are offset from the slide to span an area from just below the slide to the area of the trigger guard.  The straps on this holster are sized for a 1.5'' belt BUT they are replaceable if one desires to sport a wider or a narrower belt.  As you can see, the PCH is not a large holster; my guess is that it took the maker quite some time to get the design to where he felt it was just right. 
  


This side of the holster goes against the carrier's body and (IMHO) it does provide a gun-toting platform that is comfortable (for even an active person) to wear all day long. 



Why did I choose the Alessi PCH?  Well, I decided that if I wasn't going to carry the G19 in an IWB holster then I wasn't going to carry it all; it would be a range gun.  I wanted just one holster for my Gen 4 Glock 19 and nothing more.  Since my holster collection did not yet include anything from Alessi AND the fact that Brownells had some Alessi holsters in stock, I decided to go with the PCH.  The purchase was an act of faith that so far has worked out for me; the PCH shows great promise; the more I wear it, the more I like it.   Yesterday morning I went for a half-mile stroll with it planted (as shown in the above photo) directly on the point of my hip, a location that I usually find VERY uncomfortable for holsters (including many OWB holsters) due to the fact that gun and holster are pressing on muscles that are constantly flexing over bone.  To my surprise, the stroll turned out to be a painless event.



Carrying this holster just behind the hip suits me just fine and dandy; it is very comfortable and convenient BUT the handgun grip does bulge away from my body quite noticeably when I bend over (as do all other high-riding handguns in similar IWB holsters that I wear in this position; wearing a handgun directly on the point of the hip, though often uncomfortable, is much easier for me to conceal through a full range of movements).

Well, that's it for now.  If anything of note, positive or negative, develops regarding this holster I'll append it to this blog entry.







3 comments:

Lisa Lane said...

I am sorry...I admit to an odd sense of humor...but your disclaimer is hysterical! I like the look of the holster, admittedly not knowledgeable on that subject...but I know what cracks me up...: )

James Zachary said...

Hey there Lisa!

Heh, I still grin everytime I think of Ken referring to himself as a holster whore a few days or so back. Wish I would have thought of that one before he did.

I forget how many years ago it was, and I can't remember what exactly the legal issue was, but there was something about doing product reviews that put a blog and blogger into some sort of something something something category unless the blogger ran a disclaimer stating something something or another. Darned if I remember much of those days; I don't remember much of yesterday.

Thanks, you always put a smile on my soul.

Glen M said...

I have a alessi NYCLIP..IWB HOLSTER FOR MY J FRAME.38 ..bought it in 1992 ..best HOLSTER I ever owned