D. M. Bullard Dual Carry Holster

D. M. Bullard's Dual Carry Holster with the Ruger SR9c

It is no secret that I like Dave Bullard's holster designs, and I appreciate the quality and craftsmanship that goes into their making. My oldest, and still used, holster is one of their Bodyguard models for the Ruger LCP. I no longer have that particular LCP, but I do have the holster and it now carries the new model Ruger LCP II and it fits like it was made for it. I suppose that is another marker of a quality holster, being able to properly fit different firearms that are very similar in size. A good leather holster can accomplish this while a synthetic holster such as a kydex or plastic one will not. This is perhaps a positive benefit for the holster makers since a new gun, regardless of how similar in size it may be to another, will require a new synthetic holster. Or, at least a new "shell". Some holster makers have addressed this characteristic by making holsters that can be disassembled and reassembled with different "shells" – the outer portion of the holster – to fit different guns while the back part remains the same.

Leather holsters are more forgiving in this respect. My second oldest holster is a Bullard belt slide made for the Ruger SR9c. I found that it also almost perfectly fits the S&W M&P Shield 9mm or .40 cal as well.

I have owned, used and reviewed many holsters over the years and it seems I have winnowed my preferences to two types and styles – leather or kydex. I do not own any hybrid holsters, whether leather backed or synthetic. I've tried a number of them and they eventually go into the drawer or off to someone else. I find they are too big, too wide, difficult to attach and remove and have too many parts.

I like minimal kydex for AIWB carry. Carrying a gun at the 2 o'clock position all day requires, among other important properties, that it be in a secure holster of minimal size and bulk. A thin, minimal kydex holster carried AIWB is surprisingly comfortable. A good leather holster can also be comfortable although by definition it has more bulk than the kydex holster. And, it can also be weather dependent. I live at 7000' in the mountains. It's cold in the winter and warm in the summer, so I'm more often wearing the leather holster when it is cold and I dress in heavier clothing. The kydex is more suitable to summer.

I have been interested in Bullard's Dual Carry holsters for some time. With winter coming I obtained one built for my trusty SR9c and have been wearing it and breaking it in. I am reserving my final judgement on it until it's been properly broken in and carried thoughout the season. First impression reviews aren't really reviews but more of an indication of the reviewer's enthusiasm with a new product. This holster is, as are all of Bullard's products, extremely well made to exacting standards. It fits the Ruger precisely and as all good leather holsters do, requires a period of wear and break in to the gun, and to the wearer's body, before any realistic assessments can be made. But, a few initial observations are in order.

The Dual Carry can be configured to be worn IWB or OWB by a clever arrangement of how the two metal clips are attached. Each clip is held by only one screw and fits into a slot in the wing of the holster. Remove the screw. Slide out the clip. Turn it around 180 degrees and slide it back in. Attach the screw. Done. Each clip can be mounted low or high since two holes are offered for each screw. This permits the holster to be raised or lowered about 1". It is also possible to adjust the cant with these screw positions, but I don't think that is necessary. The holster is designed with about a 25 degree cant which properly positions the grip to be minimally obvious under a shirt.

This isn't a holster meant to be carried at the 3 o'clock position. It rides best, and conceals best at the 4 to 5 o'clock positions.

It is effective IWB but because it is full grain leather with a reinforcement strip across the outer lip, it is bulky. I am six foot three and 220 pounds. If I were smaller I'd say it might be too bulky if worn IWB. Worn OWB, it is very much like their standard Bodyguard model, the advantage being that it can double as either IWB or OWB, and with the dual clips, worn OWB, it is very easy to attach and remove.

I'll report more on the Dual Carry as I put it through its paces over the winter and into spring.

D. M. Bullard Dual Carry Holster