posted on November 18, 2011
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After all these years, that movie holds up pretty well and the car chase scene is still a classic. Back in the day, everyone thought that McQueen was entirely too cool, especially us young cops. We particularly liked the upside-down Safariland shoulder holster that held his 2.5-inch Colt Diamondback revolver.

Not too many years after that movie came out, I was lucky enough to be selected as a detective in our Criminal Investigation Division. Yep, you guessed it, right after I bought some suits to wear on the job, I ordered one of those Safariland shoulder rigs.

Now I never was too crazy about the Colt Diamondback, in .38 Spl.  I'd carried a Smith & Wesson Model 19 revolver in uniform, so I quickly bought a 2.5-inch Model 19 to wear as an investigator. A local gunsmith (himself a former cop) slicked up the action, bobbed the hammer spur and installed a slim, smooth trigger for me. Then, we fitted a smooth set of ivory grips to the gun. Hey, Steve McQueen wasn't the only one who could be cool!

Well, after all these years, I'm still not a big fan of shoulder holsters, except for special situations. But I am still a great fan of Smith & Wesson's K-frame revolvers. Sadly, that original 2.5-inch Model 19 got traded off in a moment of weakness, but I am currently dealing for another one. And I sure hope Steve McQueen knew how much he entertained us cops.


Sheriff Jim Wilson
Sheriff Jim Wilson

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