As I began a search for a quality IWB holster that would fit the CZ75B, I found that the selection was extremely limited, given the popularity of the pistol.
In my internet research I came across Craft Holsters and was immediately drawn to what I perceived as a wide selection of holsters for the CZ75B and other CZ models. A chance was taken and the Open-Muzzle IWB Holster in Mahogany Leather, which is Code IT 92 according to Craft Holsters, was ordered. An order for a compatible shoulder rig was also ordered, but that is the subject for a separate review.
The holster has a number of features that I would like to share with you, should you decide that you need a quality IWB holster for your favorite firearm.
Craft Holster has been in business for over a quarter century and, in my mind, is an excellent holster distributor with products modestly-priced for the quality received. From the Craft Holsters website, “The products you buy from us are the best ones that the Old Continent can bring, we want to bring the old European craftsmanship to the whole world.” In addition to quality holsters, products such as backs and packs, tactical wear, and gear are also available. Additional brands include:
- Falco Holsters
- Vega Holster
- Swiss Eye
- VH View
- and others
The U.S. location for Craft Holsters is:
2972 Columbia St., Torrance CA, 90503, United States, 877 424 6061, http://www.craftholsters.com
But, let’s get down to business regarding the Open-Muzzle IWB Holster for the CZ75B.
The IT 92 IWB holster is a FALCO holster brand and is reminiscent of the Milt Sparks Versa Max 2 holster only for about half the price. But, the lower cost does not equate to lower quality.
From the Falco holsters website, we glean:
“Since 1989 Falco offers extensive range of gun holsters and tactical euipment for civilian customers and for duty use. Craftmanship and permanent innovations are our bet feature. We make our holsters from the finest material to ensure a perfect fit so your gun is a safe and in the right position when needed. Falco started producing quality leather products for the traditional Falconry art. With time there was a need to diversify and taking full advantage of expertise in manufacturing leather products, Falco increased its offer to hunting products and gun holsters. Due to high demand and positive feedback the holster division started growing and being the main focus of the company.
In 2001 Falco started producing nylon holsters and tactical equipment contributing this way for a wider market reach.
Due to smart design, excellent quality and reasonable price, Falco is now one of the major European producers, exporting all over the world.
Falco contains wide variety of duty equipment, concealed gun carry and hunting equipment. Our flexibility allows us to produce also custom made products.”
The Open-Muzzle IWB Holster is double-stitched throughout the holster, unlike the Milt Sparks Versa Max 2 holster. The reinforced mouth-band aids in safe one-handed holstering of your sidearm. I have several OWB/IWB holsters without the reinforced mouth and they are a PITA for re-holstering regardless of the handgun being carried in them. For an IWB holster, simple, one-handed holstering should be a requirement and not an option.
I dislike sweat guards, as I find them a negative rather than a positive. In most cases, the sweat guard will “fold-over” against the firearm. Granted, if you do not wear an undergarment, the butt of a pistol or revolver could cause some discomfort while packing, especially if grips are like the VZ or similar grips with aggressive patterns. I also want free access to the firearm in case I actually need to draw the darn thing in a defensive situation. That means that I need a clear shot to the handle; one not obstructed by a sweat guard. This is especially important when I carry a 1911 or, in this case, a CZ75B in “Condition 1.” Several of my hybrid IWB holster have received surgery to remove the sweat guard – especially those for the 1911-based pistol. One of my reasons for choosing the Falco Open-Muzzle IWB Holster was the lack of a sweat guard. And, since I always wear an undergarment, chafing is not an issue.
The Falco Open-Muzzle IWB Holster uses retention straps with heavy snaps, rather than metal or polymer clips, for securing the holster to the belt. With a wide profile, similar to a “pancake” style of OWB holster, the weight of the firearm is better distributed around the body. While the adjustment of cant and depth cannot be adjusted, I find the holster to be more than adequate for carrying my best defensive friend around all day at an angle and depth that allows me to quickly retrieve the pistol that is located just behind my right hip. Once broken in (molded to the contour of the body), the holster is extremely comfortable.
I have found that, due to the smooth-out finish of the holster, there is a slight tendency for the holster to shift a bit, but it takes a lot to do so under normal carry conditions. Even my rough-out holster will shift slightly when worn.
The Falco Open-Muzzle IWB Holster is molded to the specific pistol or revolver being carried, which means a proper holster-to-gun fit. Also, being all leather, the firearm is nestled between bovine or horse hide and not abused on one side by a Kydex shell. While this is not important to some, because the firearm is no more than a tool, it matters to me, and I prefer leather over Kydex.
The length of the holster is such that the muzzle and sights of the pistol or revolver are completely protected as is the trigger area. The “Open Muzzle” design means just that; an open muzzle that prevents stuff from being packed into the bottom of the holster. An adjustable retention screw in the trigger guard area of the holster allows me to tighten or loosen the tension as desired. I normally do not adjust the tension screw on a new holster, unless the tension is extraordinarily tight.
I ordered my Falco Open-Muzzle IWB Holster from Craft holsters in Mahogany Leather since I am an earth child and I like earth tones. The dye is applied evenly throughout and adds a rich, quality look to the holster. But, if you are a hard core black-leather sort of person, the holster is also available in black.
Although the leather is thick, much thicker than a Kydex shell outer half, the holster tucks in close and nice to the body without a huge bulge showing its presence (not that I have ever had an issue with bulges in my pants). In fact, I have hybrid holsters that have greater presence than the FALCO Open-Muzzle IWB Holster. While not that important during colder weather when multiple layers of clothing may be worn, deep concealment is especially important during the hot and muggy Southern carry time but still have the capability to retrieve the firearm on demand.
The Falco Open-Muzzle IWB Holster, coupled with the weight of a fully-loaded pistol like the 1911 or CZ75, is quite heavy on the belt. My support system consists of a set of Perry suspenders to help carry and distribute the load throughout the carrying time. Still, a quality belt intended for carry is recommended, although my Velcro-lined inner liner belt has held up well over the years and can be cinched as tightly as desired without worrying about belt buckles or adding holes to accommodate the buckle.
Being a new holster, the Falco Open-Muzzle IWB Holster takes a little breaking in. The CZ75B was placed in a plastic bag and then pistol and plastic bag were inserted into the holster and left overnight. To help break-in the holster, I used DRAW-EASE Holster Lubricant from Galco International to condition the inside of the holster. Apply a liberal coating on the inside of the holster that contacts any surface of the pistol and sit the holster aside for a short while.
To wrap things up, I find the Falco Open-Muzzle IWB Holster, IT92 from Craft holsters is an excellent IWB holster. For a CZ75B (Falco holsters are also available for a wide range of handguns) and I invite you to go to the Craft Holster or Falco holster website and peruse their products.
Falco holsters are available from Craft Holster, Falco Holsters, and Amazon.com.
REFERENCE and RESOURCES
- Craft Holsters: https://www.craftholsters.com/
- Falco Holsters: https://www.falcoholsters.com/
- Holster Care and Break In: https://www.craftholsters.com/leather-holsters-break-in-care-a18