I Carry: Nighthawk Custom Border Special in a Galco Avenger Holster

posted on August 3, 2018

Welcome to another episode of "I Carry," Shooting Illustrated's weekly video series covering the guns and gear needed to put together a potential everyday-carry kit. Today, we have a Nighthawk Custom Border Special 1911 in a Galco Gunleather holster. We also have a Galco belt, a High Noon Holsters magazine carrier, a SureFire flashlight and a CRKT folding knife.

Nighthawk Custom Border Special (MSRP: $3,645)

Designed with input from Shooting Illustrated’s very own Sheriff Jim Wilson, the Border Special from Nighthawk Custom contains numerous features specifically engineered to make it a natural pistol for concealed-carry. From the Commander size to the concealed carry cut on the grip, the Border Special has more than a dozen custom touches centering on concealability and shootability.

A match-grade barrel, lightweight trigger and scallop texturing on the frontstrap and mainspring housing make the Border Special a joy to shoot. The concealed carry cut removes material from the end of the grip, one of the more-common areas that prints under lighter cover, while a dehorning process removes all sharp edges on the pistol to make it comfortable to carry all day long.

Yes, there’s no getting around the premium price. It’s significantly more expensive than a run-of-the-mill polymer nine millimeter, no question, but you’re also getting more, as well, with attractive wood stocks and a gold-bead front sight. There’s room for Ferraris and Maybachs next to the Camrys and Accords in the automotive world; consider custom guns like the Nighthawk Custom Border Special to be the ballistic equivalent of an Italian supercar or German luxury sedan.

Galco Avenger Belt Holster (MSRP: $120)

Galco’s Avenger line of belt holsters is designed for everyday use and longevity, with premium steerhide construction, a reinforced mouth for easier re-holstering, molded sight rails and a neutral cant. These holsters are designed to fit belts up to one and three quarter inches wide, and come in black or tan for either right- or left-handed shooters.

Galco SB1 Dress Belt (MSRP: $90)

Galco’s SB1 Dress belt is a rigid, polymer-backed belt that’s not bulky or utilitarian-looking. Rolled out earlier this year, the premise behind the SB1 series was that gear belts could look good, too. With a one and a quarter-inch width and three finish options, the SB1 allows you to carry your gear in style without sacrificing support and rigidity.

High Noon Holsters Tie Breaker Magazine Carrier (MSRP: $44.95)

With a single-loop attachment and minimalist body, the High Noon Holsters Tie Breaker magazine carrier is designed for simplicity. Two screws increase or decrease retention as desired, and the one-way-snap allows for rapid attachment that’s quite secure. Available in a variety of finishes, the Tie Breaker can be ordered for single- or double-stack magazines.

SureFire EDCL1-T (MSRP: $165)

Released late in 2017 as an enhanced version of the excellent EB1 Backup light previously covered on I Carry, SureFire’s EDCL1-T light features low and high operation, a 220-yard throw, 45-hour run time and a maximum output of 500 lumens, all on a single CR123A battery. Operation is quite simple: a light push activates the low setting while a firm push activates high for momentary on, while turning the tailcap slightly will turn the EDCL1-T on low, and turning the tailcap further will activate constant-on high setting.

CRKT Maven Folding Knife (MSRP: $69.99)

Columbia River Knife and Tool’s new Maven folding knife is new for 2018 and is a Richard Rogers design. Featuring a 8Cr13MoV-steel, 3.68-inch plain-edge blade, the Maven weighs 4.8 ounces. With G10 scales, ball-bearing-pivoting system and a flipper opening mechanism, the Maven deploys quickly and is steady in the hand. A liner-lock releases the bead-blast-finished blade when the Maven is ready to be closed.


Black Collar Arms APS
Black Collar Arms APS

First Look: Black Collar Arms APS

A new way to support your large-format pistol.

NRA School Shield Grant Program Now Accepting School Security Project Applications

The NRA School Shield Grant Program provides funds to increase school security, helping provide a secure future for our children. 

Review: Tisas PX-9 GEN3 Duty

It’s said that in life, one never gets a second chance to create a first impression. SDS Imports, the company that imports the Tisas firearms manufactured in Turkey, appears to have embraced that piece of wisdom, because I was extremely impressed from the moment I opened the box containing its new PX-9 GEN3 Duty 9 mm semi-automatic pistol. Except for some ammo, the box contained everything you need to defend yourself and your loved ones.

Review: Smith & Wesson Shield Plus In 30 Super Carry

Before we dive headfirst into the morass that is the 30 Super Carry debate, let’s start with something (slightly) less controversial: Smith & Wesson’s Shield Plus is a supremely good pistol. Building on the success of the standard Shield and updated M2.0 versions, the Shield Plus kept critical dimensions similar to allow most gear designed for the Shield to work for the Shield Plus.

2022 New Optics Guide: Thermal and Night-Vision

New advances in electronics and updated manufacturing processes have made thermal and night vision optics more affordable than ever before.

First Look: Wilson Combat 45th Anniversary SE 1911

A special edition pistol to celebrate the legacy of a legendary gun manufacturer.


Get the best of Shooting Illustrated delivered to your inbox.