It all started out of a need for a holster. When the Sig P250 was released in 2007 no one was making holsters for them. I've always been mechanically inclined and I've never found a project I couldn't tackle. I decided to research various holster materials with the intent of building a holster for the P250. That was the first time I heard of Kydex. The market wasn't nearly as saturated with Kydex as it is today. Kydex has been around for decades but only took off in a large way over the past 10 years or so. I bought a piece of .060 black Kydex and I ruined it in the oven. I ordered more Kydex than I needed the next time. After playing around with various temperatures and learning that my kitchen oven thermostat wasn’t accurate, I finally had my first holster. I was excited that I had made a hard plastic holster. I used an old metal belt clip I found in a drawer. The final result was an ugly, undisciplined holster but I was still proud of it. It worked. I wore the holster for about a week until I made another one. I made many, many more over the following months because I knew I could do better. I wasted tons of Kydex while experimenting. There were even times I ran out of kydex so I experimented with other plastics such as milk jugs. I became a holster fiend. For the record, plastic milk jugs are thermoformable just like kydex but they make horrible holsters.
The final build of my first Kydex holster.
My Kydex building continued for a few years and I continually progressed. I progressed to the point of making all of my own holsters and knife sheaths. I was still at a skill level where I would mess up a project two or three times before I would get it right. Sometimes I would mess up far more than that. Building holsters and sheaths was expensive back then because I wasted so much material. All of the wasted material paid off because I soon came up with what I considered to be my very first original design.
One day I was in the process of building a standard rectangular holster. I tried it on and didn't like how wide it was so I decided to narrow the bottom a bit. I put it on the sanding belt for a few seconds. I was afraid I would get it too narrow so I decided to stop while I was ahead. Then my grip slipped and the sanding belt dug into the face of the Kydex. There was no way I could hide the damage because it was not even close to the edge. I had taken what would have been a decent holster and messed it up.....just because I couldn't leave well enough alone. I decided to walk away from the work bench. I was disgusted. I tossed the holster under the table and didn't touch it again for a few months. One day I had the idea to take the messed up holster and see what I could do with it. Whats the worst that could happen? Its already messed up. It's already trash. I may as well have fun with it. I then proceeded to cut deep. I went crazy with it. I put curves where there should not be curves and tried my best to incorporate no straights. The result was a very interesting looking holster.
Back then, holsters simply were not supposed to look like that. I liked it although I knew it needed a lot more design changes to make it look great. That was the day my interest in designing new holsters was born. I wore the holster for probably a year and I got a ton of compliments. Looking back, they must have been complimenting the odd looks because honestly, the holster is hideous. That holster later became the Reign Wave holster. As my skill level increased, my cuts evolved and the holster began to take on a more intentional look. We sold the Reign Wave holster for about three years before we took it off of the website.
The first Reign Wave and the Reign Wave posted to our first website.
I loved the look of the Reign Wave but I still had a strong desire to see what else I could do. It felt unfinished. I took the Reign Wave and pushed it to see how extreme I could go....without changing the design too much. I loved the holster so I didn't want to destroy it. I added a border and a cut-out. I was blown away at the finished holster. In the end, I decided to stop working with cut-outs because they were so much work. I loved the border so I incorporated it into the Reign Wave Holster.
Modified Reign Wave
I have learned to embrace mistakes. I have had a mistake turn into something great a few times since Reign Tactical has been in business. One of the more notable times resulted in the creation of the Talon Cut. The picture below is not how I originally intended for the Kydex holster to look. I worked with what I had. I made a mistake so I figured out how to recover from it. Today, the Talon Cut is our second most popular edge cut.
The First Ever Talon Cut
These few experiences are the reason for our holster designs and for the very existence of Reign Tactical. I learned to take mistakes and see what can be done with them. Sometimes those mistakes can be the beginning of something great. When my hand slipped and the sanding belt messed up the holster, I never would have thought it would be the beginning of a truly unique line of holsters. When looking for perspective, I remind myself that Reign Tactical is here today because my hand slipped.
Our first shop was a 12' x 16' storage building in my back yard. This picture was taken about a year before we started Reign Tactical. We had a ton of fun. We would get together and work on knives and guns, build gear and just hang out. We ran Reign Tactical in the storage building for our first 2.5 years.