Author Topic: Witnessed a Master Craftsman at Work...  (Read 1634 times)

Offline flyandscuba

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Witnessed a Master Craftsman at Work...
« on: March 22, 2005, 09:56:09 PM »
I got to see "THE Master" holster maker (RJ Hedley) at work in his "factory". Guys, I knew his work was quality from the previous holsters I had him make for my P-32 and P-3AT -- but when I saw just how much work -- and skill -- goes into these holsters, I realized that RJ is not charging enough for his wares.

His process requires complete manual labor -- nothing is automated nor assisted by any type of power device. RJ has designed and hand-made the majority of his tools. He literally works his fingers "to the bone". The stress to his hands causes several of his fingertips to crack and at times bleed during his workday.

He literally applies the "super glue" liquid bandage to his finger tips every day. The back-log of orders on his desk was impressive.

The best part is that he makes these holsters because he likes to -- and accepts nothing but perfection before "approving" a holster for shipment.

Just a couple of observations from my brief visit:

1. RJ has a decent variety of holsters available for many pocket pistols. Any specific "custom" alteration to his existing designs requires him to break from his normal routine. So, try to select something from his designs that will meet your needs. Otherwise, if you must have something special done to a holster -- please be sure to add in some extra money for his time and trouble.

2. RJ can't remember everyone by name. If you correspond with him via email, make sure you give him your full name and what your order was specifically. Just saying "Hi, this is flyandscuba -- when will my holster be ready" doesn't get it. The more time he spends sorting through old emails or order sheets to find what you are talking about takes much time away from his craft.

3. You can order your holster in any color -- as long as it is black!  Seriously, black works better for RJ -- so if the color really doesn't matter to you (it's in a pocket anyway) -- it makes RJ's life easier if you specify black.

4. Rest assured, if you order a Hedley Holster -- you are getting a labor of love that will last many years.

RJ, thanks again for your hospitality -- and for showing me your BBQ guns!
« Last Edit: March 22, 2005, 09:56:44 PM by flyandscuba »
I'm not a gun expert -- but I did stay in a Holiday Inn Express last night...


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Re: Witnessed a Master Craftsman at Work...
« Reply #1 on: March 22, 2005, 10:29:19 PM »
  Well, I'm such a talker, I probably enjoyed it more than Fly.  He didn't tell you about gettin' to handle my beautiful Rohrbaugh,  the last of the silver framed R9's..  And with a neato serial number..

His .45AMT  is a very nice specimen, it was brand new , and with three mags...

Come by any time, Fly...

.........and thanks for the plug  :)


Offline R9SCarry

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Re: Witnessed a Master Craftsman at Work...
« Reply #2 on: March 22, 2005, 10:49:04 PM »
Fly - very good to see you drop by - I hope things are beginning to come together for you.

Wish that I were further South, and also able to come visit the Maestro!!  I admire all holster makers - and I have some idea of the skill and craft because a very old friend of mine in UK is a leather worker - making mostly bags and luggage etc.  Even now he uses machines a lot - the work involved is staggering.

I di long, long ago - get him to help me make some holsters - that was quite a challenge both for him and for me.  I designed the main patterns and cut the leather etc but - the final crafting - lining with pig skin, stitching etc - was down to him.

I am sure I have posted these before but let me indulge and show them again ... the two main pieces of work he did with and for me.  I am not gleaning any credit - more displaying lovely leather, which I think we all appreciate.

One was for my then Redhawk - still suits my Blackhawk if Red Dot removed.  The smaller one was made for my 5" model 27 Smith - we made a cross draw version as well as the right hip one.  They are not (obviously!) concealment rigs LOL - I used these on the range mostly.

Chris - R9S
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