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  #1  
Old 05-26-2005, 01:29 PM
peanutlover peanutlover is offline
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Alessi PCH or Sparks VMII?




Hello gang. I've got a dilemna. A beautiful dilemna. I need an IWB holster for concealed carry and I can't decide between these 2 quality rigs.

I've got a new Springfield Milspec fullsize.

Please help and tell me your preferences for these 2 holsters. Thanks in advance for your responses.
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  #2  
Old 05-26-2005, 02:08 PM
cglickman cglickman is offline
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I bought them both and you should do the same

Now that that's out of they way, they are both 1st rate holsters. Both are comfortable, hold the weapon securely, conceal well, and are beautifully made. I imagine the "outrigger" type loops on the VM II do a better job of supporting the weight of a full sized 1911 (I carry a commander with an Aluminum frame) due to the fact that the weight is spread over a larger area, but I must say I don't have direct experience with the PCH and a full sized 1911 (I do have a VM II for my 5" gun, but I rarely carry it IWB).

I have a lot of nice holsters and I usually pick the PCH or the VM II (actually a Heritage LTD, but it's the same basic design) out of my holster box and you really would be thrilled with either. I like dealing with Lou Alessi a lot, and he's just one of the nicest people I've ever done business with. People will tell you the same about the crew at Sparks and Lightning Arms, but I have not had the pleasure of dealing with them directly.

Sorry this is not a definitive answer, but you really can't go wrong with either. If I had to recommend one, I would say the PCH because the design itself is so amazing/revolutionary and it is a little thinner as a result. However, if somebody came and took all of my holsters and left either a PCH or VM II, I would still be happy.

Heck, on second thought, buy 'em both!

Clark
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  #3  
Old 05-26-2005, 02:55 PM
peanutlover peanutlover is offline
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VMII wins

I ordered the VMII today from Lightning Arms Sports. Craig has been a pleasure to work with. Talk about customer service! I kept him on the phone for about an hour and he remained polite and helpful despite my indecision.

The VMII is black horsehide. I also ordered a Sparks belt, 1.5 inches black. Should arrive in 2 days.

I opted against the Alessi PCH only because I have heard Lou's holsters run pretty tight and I didn't want to have to experiment with proper fitting and break-in for my first holster.

Apparently my Springfield's dust cover is a wee bit too large for the PCH at first. The PCH would need to be stretched to fit my pistol. Lou has made a beautiful holster there and I may try one for Christmas or sooner.

Thanks for your responses.
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  #4  
Old 05-26-2005, 02:58 PM
Bulldog Six Bulldog Six is offline
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A good problem to have...

I own both, and like both. The PCH is lighter and, for my 6'4, 200 lb. frame, more comfortable (but the VMII is also a very comfortable rig).

The VM II, on the other hand, has a steel-reinforced mouth, and is, I believe, better suited to repetitive one-handed holstering. I just finished up a three day training course with mine.

I'm aware that Lou's unique design of the PCH allows for one handed holstering, but my preference is to save my PCH for everyday carry use and go to the VM II for heavy range training with lots of one-handed holstering.

YMMV, of course.

Six
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  #5  
Old 05-26-2005, 03:58 PM
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Black_Talon Black_Talon is offline
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I have many VM-II's as well as a 5" PCH. Until I got the PCH, I'd always found the VM-II's to be the most comfortable IWB for extended carry. Now the crown goes to the PCH. I don't know how Lou does it, but he's designed the PCH so that it holds the gun very tight against your side, yet is still very comfortable to wear. This certainly isn't meant to denigrate the VM-II, as it's still a great, great holster. I don't think you can go wrong with either. I'd suggest following cglickman's advice and getting both of them, if you can afford it.

Oh, and every VM-II that I've ever had has fit fairly tight and required a bit of breaking in to get a smooth release. I've not found any of my varius Alessi holsters to be fitted any tighter than a Sparks holster.


Bulldog Six - FWIW, I've had absolutely zero issues with one-handed reholstering using the PCH. I've just recently spent two long days at the range, practicing with the PCH and it's worked just as well as the VM-II.
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  #6  
Old 05-26-2005, 04:11 PM
tonyta tonyta is offline
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Alessi PCH or Sparks VMII?

I have the owb for both of mine, one from sparks, on from alessi. love them both, ordered two belts also. did not have to wait more than three days since I go them from Lightning Arms, click on link above. Great people to work with, although Alessi seems to have a great personality. Read lots of his replies., awsome.
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  #7  
Old 05-26-2005, 05:20 PM
Bulldog Six Bulldog Six is offline
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Clark - elegant solution, I like it a lot! Solved my problem, too.....

Black Talon - thanks for the comment, glad to hear you like your PCH as much as I like mine. It's not that I have an issue with one-handed re-holstering on the PCH (mine works fine for that, despite it not being steel-reinforced), it's more that my VM II's much older, seen more extended range duty, and so it's the one that gets the call when zillions of presentations and re-holsterings are the order of the day.

Best regards to all,

Six
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  #8  
Old 05-26-2005, 10:25 PM
Kimber Dude Kimber Dude is offline
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I own them both - and while both ahve their strengths, IMO the PCH is hands down the best IWB holster EVER. A couple of factors come into play the decision - where on the belt are you wearing it, and what rig are you wearing it on? I love to kidney-carry my 1911's for which I use my PCH - but, on occassion I wear the pistol between 3 and 6 o'clock - where it's easier for the VMII to work it's wonders. Both are great, but the thinner, more innovative, lighter design goes to Lou. One can use the PCH in SOB type areas, but the VMII IMO, spreads out the weight just a tad better when carryingh back there. So it may depend on your body type - I'm slender.
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  #9  
Old 05-27-2005, 10:59 AM
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Louis F. Alessi Louis F. Alessi is offline
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I've always considered the VMll one of the most innovative holster designs to come along in the last 30 years, and I've recommended that holster to many people since Tony designed it. It's a marvel of design ingenuity.
To compare the PCH to Tony's VMll is a compliment in the highest form for me.
Thanks guys!
Lou
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  #10  
Old 05-27-2005, 11:18 AM
cglickman cglickman is offline
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^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

Lou, you're a class act!

Clark
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  #11  
Old 05-27-2005, 11:29 AM
Mute Mute is offline
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Is the PCH a tuckable like the VMII?
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  #12  
Old 05-27-2005, 05:15 PM
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Black_Talon Black_Talon is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mute
Is the PCH a tuckable like the VMII?
No.
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  #13  
Old 05-27-2005, 05:31 PM
JohnC JohnC is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cglickman
^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

Lou, you're a class act!

Clark

Yep!
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  #14  
Old 05-27-2005, 11:46 PM
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Louis F. Alessi Louis F. Alessi is offline
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Thank you Clark!
The VMll is one of those holsters that every holster makers sees, and says to himself "why the hell didn't I think of that".. I know that's what I was thinking when Tony sent me one.
Lou
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  #15  
Old 05-28-2005, 01:18 AM
gigi*riva gigi*riva is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by peanutlover
...I opted against the Alessi PCH only because I have heard Lou's holsters run pretty tight and I didn't want to have to experiment with proper fitting and break-in for my first holster...
My one and only experience with an Alessi holster and consequent fit issues...I bough the belt slide with pull-through snaps back in 2000 or 01 or therabouts...aside from the beyond reproach and stunning artisanship, the fit was phenomenal ab initio. Snug but slick. My only concern, illegitimate btw, is that after many "yuh talkin' to me" presentations, I've shaved down a good chunk of the brass snap thing...
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  #16  
Old 05-28-2005, 07:08 AM
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Skelt Skelt is offline
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Both...

I like the idea of getting both also. I have a VMII that I use for carry and I love it. I just finished a two week training course with it with no problems. The draw is as smooth as silk. But with all the great things I've heard about the PCH here and on Louder than Words, I think I'm going to have to get one also.

Lou, how long is your wait right now?
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