The Skull Crush OWB Holster

The Skull Crush OWB Holster
Carbon fiber and leather come together.

Ralph Rodriguez is a Texas police officer with 15 years experience and an entrepreneur. Ten years ago, Rodriguez started Skull Crush and made his business applying Cerakote to firearms. While carrying pistols of his own, he noticed that the Kydex was wearing down the finish, especially around the slide and the triggerguard where the retention point is designed on many Kydex holsters.

“I like leather [holsters], but I prefer the function of Kydex,” Rodriguez said as he recalled the spark that led to his business. “I Googled leather and Kydex holsters and found a man who invented a Kydex holster lined with leather. I ordered one and then liked it so much that I had to secure a deal so that I could offer Skull Crush holsters.”

Skull-Crush-OWB-Holster3
In addition to leather-lined Kydex, Skull Crush offers leather-lined, carbon-fiber holsters. The polymer belt mounts cinch down as the belt is tightened. Mounts are adjustable for 30 degrees of cant. $127

To finish creating his new business venture, Rodriguez applied his talents in other ways. He constructed his own web­site and learned product photography. Though he is college educated, Rodriguez remembers learning most of what he needed through trial and error — and watching lots of YouTube videos.

Skull Crush offers an inside-­the-­waistband (IWB) and outside-­the-­waistband (OWB) option for many pistols, even custom guns equipped with red dot sights and obscure or out-­of-­production models. They can do this level of customization through unique graphics programs that affords design flexibility and CNC cutting for precision. Enhancments to any holster only takes minutes in design.


“Custom” also translates to “custom colors.” There are the standard black, olive drab and coyote brown options, but Skull Crush can also deliver holsters ranging from blood red to police blue, as well as several carbon-fiber colors. No, the carbon fiber isn’t a pattern; Skull Crush sells real, leather-­lined, carbon-­fiber holsters.


Skull Crush also sells single, double and triple magazine pouches for single-­ and double-­stack mags. The pouch itself is also available in either Kydex or carbon-fiber materials, but the mount is a polymer. There are stainless-steel, Allen-­head screws that afford unique cant to each individual pouch.

Skull-Crush-OWB-Holster4
Skull Crush offers spare magazine pouches made of either Kydex or carbon fiber with a polymer belt mount. They can be ordered for single- or double-stack magazines. $95

No carry rig is complete without a gun belt. Also made in Texas, the Skull Crush gun belt was designed to support the weight of a concealed or open-­carried pistol as well as a brace of spare magazines. It’s 11/2-­inches wide, which means that it’s compatible with most holsters and threads easily through most trouser’s belt loops. What is particularly unique to this belt is that it’s holes are spaced closely at 1/2-­inch apart. (Most belts feature holes spaced 1-­inch apart.) The advantage is that those of us who carry guns regularly can fine tune the tension of our belt with precision comfort. This wouldn’t be possible if this were a cheaply made single-­leather strap belt bought from a department store. If these were on a single-­layer belt, they’d be so close that the holes would wear and tear into a single large hole. Skull Crush’s belt is made of two contrasting pieces of leather featuring a sandwiched liner that starts behind the holes and continues around the remainder. It’s finished with a chrome-­plated roller buckle and is single-­stitched at the edges for good looks and security.

Skull-Crush-OWB-Holster5
Skull Crush’s two-piece gun belts with roller buckle offer adjustment holes spaced at 1/2-inch increments. $85

30-­Day Carry

To test the level of “custom” advertised by Skull Crush, I emailed Rodriguez through skullcrush.com and ordered an OWB holster for a classic HK P7M8. After selecting my colors and carry side, I asked for the carbon-­fiber option and added a double-­mag pouch (also made of carbon fiber) and a gun belt. It can take a month for Skull Crush to deliver, but the wait was worth it.

Unlike a lot of the belts and holsters G&A tests, the Skull Crush OWB didn’t require a week’s worth of everyday carry to wear in. With tension adjusted, it was ready. What was particularly interesting about the holster is that the leather changes the draw stroke experience. To me, it feels as though the pistol drags inside the holster as I draw, but it’s a smooth feeling and doesn’t appear to slow the timer. The holster is tension adjustable, which only affects how tightly the one-­piece shell clamps down on a pistol. The leather amplifies the gripping power of the tensioners.


The most unique design feature is the belt mounts flex as you tighten your belt around your waist. This brought the pistol closer to my body and kept the top-­heavy, loaded-­magazine grip from pulling away from my waist. I wore this holster concealed under button-­down shirts that I test IWB holsters with and I didn’t suffer printing as with most OWB rigs. The only negative I experienced was with the stainless steel screws. I had two loosen with use that had to be reattached with blue Loctite. The best feature is that this holster affords a full firing grip.

Skull-Crush-OWB-Holster2
Draw-to-fire time is the average of five clean draws producing an A-zone hit on a stationary target positioned at 21 feet.

During this evaluation, I learned that the HK P7M8 uses magazines with a sharp protrusion at the front. This protrusion dragged and cut a groove on the inside at the front of the mag pouch with each draw. This drag interrupted reloads with spare magazines. If this were a different pistol such as any Glock, HK VP9 or SIG Sauer P320, this wouldn’t have occurred. If you’re considering a Skull Crush holster for an HK P7 as a result of this review, don’t buy a spare magazine pouch for it. Carry the mag in a pocket.


I have no reservations in recommending the holster or gun belt. The belt is one of the best. Though currently a small business, Rodriguez’s taste for carbon fiber, kydex and leather are sure to make Skull Crush a success. 

 
 

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Recommended Articles

See More Recommendations

Popular Videos

A New Season of G&A TV

A New Season of G&A TV

In this new season of Guns & Ammo TV, we introduce two new series and bring back a viewer favorite - Camera's Don't Lie. We look at long-range tech and see how to make shots previously thought impossible. Next we visit ISS Prop House in Hollywood.

Trijicon

Trijicon's New Specialized Reflex Optics (SRO)

The Trijicon SRO is specifically designed for pistol use. The wide field of view and clean, crisp dot makes it easy for users to find and track the dot in both target and competitive shooting applications.

Black Hills Evolution of Rifle Cartridge: .308 Win. 175 Gr. Match

Black Hills Evolution of Rifle Cartridge: .308 Win. 175 Gr. Match

David Fortier talks with Jeff Hoffman of Black Hills Ammunition about the evolution of the .308 Win. 175 Gr. Match bullet.

All About .300 Blackout

All About .300 Blackout

The .300 Blackout is here to stay, and we take some time to look at new technology surrounding this cartridge. Next, we pit subsonic rivals against each other before stretching the legs of this CQB round out to 600 yards from a short 9-inch barrel.

See More Popular Videos

Trending Articles

Reminiscing on another great American lever action. Rifles

Review: Savage Model 99

Craig Boddington - February 11, 2019

Reminiscing on another great American lever action.

Some guns are easier to work with than others, but the Ruger American Rifle doesn't require an engineering degree to tinker with; here's a look at some upgrade options to take your Ruger American to the next level, and make it something a bit different. Accessories

Top Ruger American Rifle Upgrades

Philip Massaro - March 15, 2018

Some guns are easier to work with than others, but the Ruger American Rifle doesn't require an...

Here's the latest competitive intel on what are the top ARs in 3-Gun today and why. Rifles

Top ARs in 3-Gun Shooting Today

James Tarr - May 14, 2019

Here's the latest competitive intel on what are the top ARs in 3-Gun today and why.

The Hornady 6.5 PRC (Precision Rifle Cartridge) is a Rifle

6.5 PRC - Magnumized 6.5 Creedmoor

Tom Beckstrand - August 01, 2018

The Hornady 6.5 PRC (Precision Rifle Cartridge) is a "magnumized" 6.5 Creedmoor. It offers...

See More Trending Articles

More Accessories

The Boyds Gunstocks Spike Camp gunstock is only $99 and is available in all 13 of Boyds' color combinations. Accessories

Boyds Gunstocks Spike Camp Thumbhole Gunstock — New for 2020

Guns & Ammo Staff - May 06, 2020

The Boyds Gunstocks Spike Camp gunstock is only $99 and is available in all 13 of Boyds' color...

Revolution Targets Portable Plate Rack and Heavy Duty Hostage Target self-reset to add more fun to range time while removing the drudgery. Accessories

Revolution Targets Portable Plate Rack and Heavy Duty Hostage Target

Richard Nance - May 08, 2020

Revolution Targets Portable Plate Rack and Heavy Duty Hostage Target self-reset to add more...

CrossBreed Holsters has updated their product listing to include fits that accommodate the new FN 503. Accessories

CrossBreed FN 503 Holsters and Mag Carriers – First Look

Guns & Ammo Staff - May 08, 2020

CrossBreed Holsters has updated their product listing to include fits that accommodate the new...

Any AR enthusiast will be well-served by a TriggerTech trigger. They bring a lot of new technology to an otherwise traditional segment of the AR market and have gained a reputation as top performers. Accessories

TriggerTech Triggers

Tom Beckstrand - June 02, 2020

Any AR enthusiast will be well-served by a TriggerTech trigger. They bring a lot of new...

See More Accessories

GET THE MAGAZINE Subscribe & Save

Digital Now Included!

SUBSCRIBE NOW

Give a Gift   |   Subscriber Services

PREVIEW THIS MONTH'S ISSUE

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Get Digital Access.

All Guns and Ammo subscribers now have digital access to their magazine content. This means you have the option to read your magazine on most popular phones and tablets.

To get started, click the link below to visit mymagnow.com and learn how to access your digital magazine.

Get Digital Access

Not a Subscriber?
Subscribe Now