The names of some of the rivers of Texas always have been pronounced just as the Spaniards, when they first explored and named them, pronounced them. The Pecos, the longest tributary of the Rio Grande, is one of these (pronounced "pay-cuss" ... emphasis on first syllable).  The Pecos river runs through parts of Texas and New Mexico that was the last stronghold of Geronimo, and his band.  This is a beautiful river and seems out of place as it runs clear water through some of the most desolate desert mountains in the Southwest.  Great portions of the areas near the Pecos appear to be untouched wilderness, and it is easy to imagine that you have stepped back a century or more in time, when you visit this area.  

The rigs above and below were built for a Ruger Old Army and a 7 1/2" Colt SAA.    This "California" style holster looks really good with any six-gun, and I have build many of these for Open Tops, "58 Remingtons, conversions, and C & B revolvers.   I put a total of 30 cartridge loops on this moneybelt above, but it would have held more.  To figure cost of any complete rig built to your specifications, See Prices and ordering info.

The money belt was the most popular type gunbelt of the Old West, for two reasons:  First, it is the most comfortable gunbelt you will ever wear.  The second reason for it's popularity in the old West, was the pocket for gold coins and papers, usually made by the folding over of the leather and sewing on one end and along the top edge, leaving the end near the buckle open. The pocket thus formed, was more than just handy for a traveling man, or a man who lived in the saddle or maybe a bunk house and had no safe place to store valuables except on his person.  The second reason (security) has expired, but the first reason (comfort) has not.  It  is built of 4 - 5 ounce oil / chrome tanned flexible leather.  Occasionally, (as shown in “Packing iron”) the moneybelt was sewn top and bottom edges and at the tongue end... still leaving it hollow at the buckle end. This is one of our options, and it sometimes works better than folding it over if the leather is not really soft. This is truly a beautiful belt!   It is very comfortable, and period correct!  When I take an order for this belt, I will use my judgement as to which construction method will work better for the leather used to build it.

The moneybelts shown here are 3” wide and have 30 loops.   The holsters (top photo) are dropped about 1 1/2" and canted barrel forward about 8 degrees.  For some, this makes for easier access to longer barreled revolvers, and is a period correct configuration. (See Historical Note - below)  (Both double rigs are done in "Chocolate" brown.)

The Pecos holster is one of our most popular designs - especially for cap and ball revolvers.  The one above is shown with a Ruger Old Army.

The "Pecos" is cut to be easier to draw from than most "slim jim" style holsters.  This holster also shows off the revolver better than most.  Wet molded to fit like a glove, the revolver clicks securely into place. Although some of these holsters are shown without a hammer loop, we include one on every holster, and strongly recommend that you use it.

The “greenish” (poor lighting) photo above shows one method of securing the belt loop  in back.  The photo below of a pair of Lampasas holsters shows another method of securing this style holster on a belt.  Please specify which you prefer.

A moneybelt Pecos rig (medium chocolate) with a cross draw

Not long after the "War of Northern Aggression," cap and ball revolvers began to be converted to weapons that could shoot metallic cartridges.  Gunleather began to evolve to accommodate these changes.  Now, cartridge loops for pistol shells began to be a common addition to gunbelts.  Because they cost only a fraction of what the new revolvers sold for, these converted sixguns remained popular even well into the beginning of the 20th Century... even though in 1879,  Colt's Peacemakers (introduced in 1873) became generally available to the civilian market.  This 3" moneybelt rig was built for a pair of converted cap and ball revolvers.  The moneybelt tongue and buckle billets will be tooled to match your holsters at no additional cost.

Below is a good example of what might be described as a "Frontiersman" rig... typical of a very plain cap & ball rig.  Almost all had at least some tooling.  A rather plain rig with no cartridge loops and a tapered, lined belt.  A very authentic combination for the cap and ball rig.

This photo (below) shows one of the "Pecos" holster on the left, canted barrel forward about 8 degrees.  the one on the right is near vertical.  The left holster is also dropped about two inches.   Dropping the holster about 1 1/2 inches makes it a little handier to get a long barreled revolver out of the leather without having to raise your elbows above your head as you draw... who needs a buscadero belt?  ( I say "about" about 1 1/2 inches because if the holster is canted a little, the back will be a little lower than the front.)  I measure “drop” by the distance from the top of the trigger guard to the top of the belt.  This means that a holster like the one on the right actually has a negative drop.

The above rig is "aged gunleather"  click here to find out more

The Pecos holsters above (one of the James Brothers wore a holster similar to the carving above) not only show examples of various methods of construction, but a unique gunbelt with eighty (80) shell loops (if the “bad guys” are out there, and must be brought in, you better not run out of shells!).

The Pecos holsters above are for 5 1/2” SAAs or R.V.s, are antique Tan with one bead and one alternating row of stamping

Historical note:  Many old military holsters, were cut down and converted for civilian use.  Some of these would have dropped the holster on the belt about two inches as several holsters on this and other pages.  See Packing Iron, by Richard Rattenbury, pages 24 - 32, for examples of the drop on some military style holsters.  In addition, there are other examples of holsters built  in the 19th Century with such a "drop" built into them.  See Packing Iron , page 134, for one such example of a holster built and dated 1880 - 1890.

See Prices and ordering info: click here

Remember, we are a full custom shop and will make alterations and variations of any of the designs you see, as well as origional designs if you have a photo  or can describe what you would like.  There is usually no additional charge for redesigning or designing according to your desires.  (I get my best ideas from my customers)

Always measure the circumference of exactly where you plan to wear the gunbelt... over the kind of clothes you will be wearing with the rig.    Please click here to see the explanation near the bottom on the index page.

For all our holsters we use “heavy saddle skirting” from Hermann Oak.  This is vegetable tanned leather - the very best domestic hides, and tanned in America.

Unless your holsters are constructed using heavy skirting (at least 12 - 15 oz leather)  they will not hold their shape nor hold up to heavy use.

                 Fall Sale

Until the end of the year, when you order a double rig (2 holsters and any gun belt)... 

We will either build a 3rd holster at no cost...

Or two cartridge slides (shot shell or revolver) at no cost.


mailto:Don Barnett

Phone: 281-659-3998


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The Pecos