Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Galco Matrix Holster

I confess: I'm a scabbard nut. Always have been. The art and science of toting a handgun has long fascinated me and I have studied it for quite a few years. One of the side effects of such a "study" is that the holster accumulection just keeps getting bigger and bigger. Recently I added one of Galco's thermoplastic rigs to the museum. It's their M7X "Matrix." I bought the one for the the 1911 and clones.

The label on the packaging says it is for all barrel lengths of AMT, Colt, Kimber, Para, S&W, Springfield, and EMP 1911s, and even lists the Star PD. (While the PD does in fact fit in the holster, I wouldn't really call it secure. If I were Galco I might consider removing the PD from the list.)

I should admit that I do not like plastic containers for fine pistols. That said, I will admit that I have a few of them. Curiosity perhaps, or maybe a latent and tardy desire to get with the program. You tote handguns in leather. Nevertheless, I strive always to learn and adapt.

This holster affixes to the belt with a double strap-and-snap system, the first such holster I have owned. I don't like a holster to wobble around the belt, so I was sure this system would not be very secure. I was dead wrong. In Galco's iteration of the design it is even more solid on the belt than a tight loop would be. It does NOT move or shift one iota. (I'm wearing it on a very heavy-duty Mernickle 1-1/2" belt.)

Which is a good thing, because this is one tight bad-boy scabbard. The first time I tried to remove my Kimber CDP Pro from the Matrix made me suspect Super-Glue as the holding agent. It takes a mighty, ripping tug to free gun from holster. It snaps into the holster most reassuringly. It is then THERE for the foreseeable future. Wyatt would have been a dead man. Galco recommends some neutral shoe polish on the interior surfaces. I tried it. It helped a little.

I emailed Galco and there ensued an exchange with a very nice and helpful fellow who took quite a bit of time with me. He suggested shoe polish and I said I had done that. He suggested silicon, which I hadn't done since I have none at hand. It's now on the WalMart list for my next foray into so-called civilization. He also said that leaving a gun in the holster will not cause it to shape itelf. Repetitive drawing and re-holstering is the recommendation. He ended up by saying that maybe the holster "wasn't for me." Fair enough. I even have an El Paso Saddlery rig that "isn't for me" along with several other respectable makes.

But I'm stubborn. I really like the way this holster clings to the belt like an over-achieving limpit, and I like its clean, minimalist lines, and the way it holds the pistol high and tight just like I prefer a 1911 to ride. I'm now working on doing some subtle reshaping of interior surfaces with some emery paper. If I ruin the holster I will chalk it up to experience and stupidity and throw it in the mistake bin where it will no doubt quickly make friends with some of its betters.

By the way, it absolutely loves my Gold Cup. So much so that it refuses to give it back. Seriously, it is not a holster for the Gold Cup . (My Galco man said, "Well, the Gold Cup isn't a 1911." OK. Next topic.) The Matrix deals with my WWI 1911 about the same as the Kimber. Same for Springer. I've already mentioned that the PD is a bit loose for my taste.

Some good points of the Matrix: It would be my holster of choice if I were a deep sea fisherman or a rodeo rider. Seriously, for a horseman it would be a good choice. Or a back-country ATVer. Likewise for someone who spends a lot of time around the water and fears losing a pistol. Also, a gun-snatch from this rig is highly unlikely. An off-angle grab just isn't going anywhere except wedgieville for the wearer.

I'm going to stick with this holster for a while longer. (I wear it as I write.) Don't get me wrong: the pistol can be drawn from the rig. It just takes a mighty yank worthy of Paul Bunyan. I tell myself it's getting a bit better. Either that or I'm getting stronger. Either way I'm ahead of the game.

Addendum: Today (9/11) I tried some Meguiar's premium auto paste wax. Much better. Then, later, I tried some silicon spray. Brilliant! The holster now works like I thought it should in the first place. I'll keep working with it. Now I'm curious about how often I will have to 'recharge' it with the spray can.


Anonymous said...

I stick to shoulder holsters, they're the best for me.

I didn't know the Gold Cup wasn't an M1911. I thought it was an M1911 built to high tolerances with match sights. Is that not right?

Carteach0 said...

Hmm.... leave the pistol in and set 'er in the sun for an hour? No idea what kind of plastic it's made of.

I like snug.... I don't like having to fight for my pistol. My usual carry rig is a Glaco JAK slide.
About as minimal as it gets, but it's proven itself to me. I practice draw/fire fairly often, and it's smooth as butter.

Can't say the same for anything else except my Galco 'Miami' shoulder rig for my Colt. Also smooth as butter, but I seldom dress for a shoulder rig. That's a winter time wear thing, when heavy coats and shirts are the norm.

Rio Arriba said...

Hermit, the GC is, of course, a 1911. The Galcon gentleman was merely referring to its slightly different slide dimensions that would affect how it fit in the Matrix.

I have several of the early JAckass/Galco s/h rigs for both sixguns and autos. They are excellent and I like them, but in general I don't want anything around my neck or over my shoulders. Still, in the winter they are great and nothing is better in a vehicle.

CarteachO, I tried that, first thing. Didn't work. And then later the Galco rep told me that heting the holster would not work. I guess that material simply returns to its original size when the heat is turned off! Look at my post "Things that Go Bang"-- you might recognize something. BTW, what DOES work: silicon spray! Yes, indeed.