A little HAWG History and a reintroduction of the HAWG STASH!
The year was 2006. I started teaching Florida CCW to Illinois residents so that when they left the Peoples Republic of Illinois, they could legally carry and defend themselves in 31 states (of course, back then, they had to remove the pistol from concealment before re-entering the Peoples Republic of Illinois).
At the time, I lived 19 miles from the Missouri border and went across the border for many reasons numerous times a week. Remember, carrying in Illinois at the time was a felony, so abiding by those rules was necessary! Carrying for me in those days consisted of pocket-carrying my pistol. Remember, this was back before the G43, Hellcat, etc. Our choices then consisted of J Frame Revolvers and similar ones, G26, P3AT, etc. We all know that carrying a pistol in a holster is the safest way to carry it, and that is how I carried it. I had experience with Kydex holsters and had utilized the existing holsters by re-designing them so they could be removed by using the thumb to push off the holster from the firearm. At the same time, the pistol was still concealed in the pocket and worked great for pockets of jackets and trousers that would allow for a bulkier item to be in the front pocket.
The carrying while in a free state went something like this...
First, leave the house (in occupied territory) with an empty pistol in the holster in a zippered case and a loaded magazine in my left pocket opposite the pocket carrying the pistol. Drive on 64/40 across the mighty Mississippi. Then, after crossing the state line, discretely remove the pistol from the case and insert the loaded magazine, push off the holster with your thumb, keeping the pistol pointed in the safest direction, rack slide, replace the pistol in the holster, do an admin reload to top off, and go about my business in a free state.
As I would head back into east Berlin, I mean East St Louis, at some point on the journey, the magazine would be removed, round racked out, and back in the zippered case, my G26 would go. This was done many times; if I had someone riding a shotgun, they would help.
Students in my CCW would ask how I carried, and I would demonstrate. They often wanted "my gear."
I started bending Kydex in early 2008. And the first holsters I produced were all designed specifically for thumb removal from the pistol. At the time, I was keeping rather busy, between making holsters and teaching CCW classes. I was designing a way to attach a holster IWB that was as easy to remove from IWB as my pocket holster was to remove from my pocket. That design was elusive. Then Ulticlip came out, and I immediately saw it as the solution. The original Ulticlip was designed as a retrofit for (mainly leather) holsters that had already been made but could be updated with the Ulticlip.
Seeing the Ulticlip's ingenuity, I returned to my drawing board with a question. Why not build a holster designed from the ground up with the Ulticlip as the main ingredient? Marry the Ulticlip to the pistol, with Kydex as the catalyst. So that is what I designed and have done so well since Ulticlip came out 8 years ago.
All these years, the original HAWG customers with my old thumb removal holsters have called and said, "Hey, I have a new, (insert newest little pistol here) and I need a pocket holster for it." And I would crank out a pocket holster like I made in days of yore for the said pistol and ship it to them.
They would get it and call, "Hey my buddy wants one, why don't you market these?"
And my reply would go something like this, "Well, Ralph, you know how hard it was to explain how this worked the first time I made you one? The adjustment to thumb length? Well, I don’t have the time nor the inclination to explain/adjust this holster to everyone over the phone.” Ralph would agree, as the process was a little time consuming.
Well, I came across some raw material a few months back, and I started “Shade Tree Engineering” around with the material, and Kydex, made some prototypes of a new “Thumb Removed Pocket Holster.” Then I tested them. I sent some to friends to test. And they passed with flying colors. So, The new HAWG STASH. Secure-Thumb-Activated-Secret-Holster now has a user adjustable Thumb Lever and is available for a lot of pocket sized pistols.
The HAWG STASH is weapon specific to allow the safe carrying of a smaller pistol in a pocket, backpack, or anywhere the user can think of. If for some reason, the pistol is needed, the user can press the thumb lever with the drawing hand.
The HAWG STASH.
Helping America Wear Guns, Sometimes More than One.
I get a lot of calls from new shooters, looking for the perfect pistol, perfect this, and perfect that. Those are all personal choices based on hand size, feel, needs, and budget. Therefore, I cannot tell them what would be the best fit for them. Sure, I can suggest what works for me and what I have seen many people succeed with. But as they say in interwebs-land, YMMV… “Your Mileage May Vary!”
One thing I know makes for a better time at the range is the perfect “Going to the Range” bag. Before you jump up and say, “Wait a minute, the gear in your bag is your pistol, holster, belt…” let me interrupt and clarify. I didn’t say, “Perfect Range Bag,” I said, the perfect GOING TO THE RANGE bag.
Subscribe to the HAWG newsletter