The pocket holster typically serves two main purposes. It is designed not only allow the gun to “print” less in your pocket, but also designed to keep that pistol always at the proper angle to ensure a quick draw when needed. However, while there are many other benefits, there is one other and very important feature that a majority honestly fail to offer. That pistol must be drawn from your pocket with ease, regardless of attire. It must be drawn with holster remaining in your pocket. With the exception of the latest holster previously reviewed here that somewhat does remedy this, I have found all others are just simply not capable of providing all three very critical features that I personally think all should seriously focus on before choosing to purchase one. That’s where the Recluse holster comes in and why I chose to take the time to review it. I typically do not like custom holsters but this was certainly an exception. For those who pocket carry, it is one that does deserve a very serious look and is what I will do in this latest article.
Packaging & Contents
The holster comes well packaged and upon opening, you’ll be greeted with a short but informational booklet every responsible gun owner should read again and again. Unlike most custom holsters I have received in the past, it is shipped in professional packaging detailing its main features, as well as its supported handgun.
Design & Testing
They sent over their Solo Holster specifically for the Diamondback DB380 I reviewed here. Quality of this holster is excellent. The holster design is simple but highly clever. The only issue I have with it is the rather large footprint when compared to your average pocket holster.
I was impressed with the overall fit. The Diamondback DB380 fit perfectly in this holster and that is partly due to it’s unique design I will comment on below.
It is hard to notice in pictures on their website, but there is a custom foam mold in the center where the actual trigger does rest. It is not just the muzzle flap that keeps it in place. In fact, it is this custom trigger rest that keeps the pistol in place and it is precisely molded to allow that trigger to rest firmly. Unlike your average pocket holster, one side of this holster completely exposes the pistol and allows you to slide your hand between the holster (releasing trigger from its rest) and ensure that the gun will be drawn with the holster still in your pocket. It does work well, but does require a bit of practice to get used to it and draw the gun quickly.
During extensive testing carrying this holster, I did indeed find that I needed to practice a bit in order to get used to this draw method. Once you do, you’ll be just fine and will likely feel much more at ease carrying a pistol in this fashion. I carried this holster for over a week with different attire and was pleased with its ability to conceal the weapon, as well as draw it without worry. This is something that most pocket holsters simply do not offer. After carrying it for some time though, I kept coming back to its overall size. It was just a bit too large to carry the pistol comfortably in the front pocket.
Simple yet highly clever. That’s the best way to describe this particular pocket holster. In fact, its highly unique design is what makes it a suitable option for a majority who do pocket carry. I live in sunny South Florida and typically wear baggy shorts or pants. Your average pocket holster is just not an option for such attire and you’ll likely draw both when reaching in unless you either own one that is designed to prevent this or break in the holster well enough to eliminate this issue. The Recluse holster solves this problem by exposing one side completely, yet keeping the pistol (and trigger) securely in place.
The holster is not without its flaws though. After testing, I could only come across just one issue and that is size. It is a rather large, boxy holster more suited for back pocket carry. In fact, all though I normally don’t use this method, it may very well be the best back pocket holster I have come across. However, with some very minor changes, this holster will certainly fit the bill quite nicely and would still go as far as saying it is a much better front pocket carry option than most other options on the market . Trimming it down a bit will definately make it much more comfortable to carry, something it simply lacks. Also, for those coming from your average pocket holster, it does take a bit of practice to get used to it as I mentioned above. However, that’s certainly worth it when it comes down to ultimate peace of mind and that is simply feeling comfortable enough that you will draw only the pistol when in a life or death situation. In the end, it all comes down to what’s most important to you. Is it ultimate peace of mind or is it overall comfort? The Recluse Solo manages to break the norm an attempt to offer mostly all critical features you should look for in a pocket holster.
Update 09-21-11 – The company has contacted me notifying that a model is available for this handgun that does sport a much lower profile and one designed primarily for front pocket carry. It is pictured below…
This one does look much more comfortable and one that should seriously be a first option for many. Note that they have also informed me that a model for the Diamondback DB9 is also available.