I Carry: S&W 686 Plus Revolver in a CrossBreed MaxSlide Holster

posted on October 27, 2017

Welcome to another episode of "I Carry," Shooting Illustrated's weekly video series covering the guns and gear needed to put together an ideal everyday-carry kit. Today, we have a Smith & Wesson Model 686 Plus revolver in a CrossBreed MaxSlide OWB holster, paired with a Safariland CD-2 Speedloader Holder and an HKS speedloader. Rounding out the gear is a TAC5 TAC1200 flashlight, an Ontario Knife Company Cerberus and a CrossBreed reversible nylon belt.

The Gun: Smith & Wesson Model 686 Plus 3-5-7 Series ($899)

Smith & Wesson rolled out several new models in the popular 686 Plus lineup for 2017. Collectively, these guns are known as the 3-5-7 Series, due to the fact that three models are offered with corresponding 3-, 5- and 7-inch barrels. This particular model is the 5-inch offering.

The Smith & Wesson 686 Plus is chambered in .357 Magnum, and the “Plus” in the gun’s name refers to the extra round included in the cylinder, bringing the total capacity to 7 rounds. The revolver is made entirely from stainless steel and features an unfluted cylinder and a full-lug barrel, bringing the unloaded weight to 37.4 ounces.

The Holster: CrossBreed MaxSlide Holster ($58.50)

We’re carrying the 686 Plus in a CrossBreed MaxSlide Holster, which is an outside-the-waistband rig available for a number of popular revolver models and is purpose-built to allow for comfortable carry while out hiking or hunting. The holster is built with a premium cowhide backing paired up with a form-fitted Kydex half-shell that provides secure retention for your wheelgun.

The MaxSlide features three belt slots. The top two slots allow for a standard strong-side forward cant behind the hip, while the bottom slot allows for crossdraw wear with a reverse cant. The holster also includes the company’s combat cut, allowing users to obtain a secure, full firing grip on the gun before drawing.

The Mag Carrier: Safariland CD-2 ($12)

We’re carrying a spare cylinder’s worth of rounds for the 686 Plus using the HKS 587-A speedloader, which secures all seven rounds using a twist-lock knob and keeps the rounds ready to load. When loading, simply insert the rounds into an empty cylinder and twist the knob to load.

The speedloader is secured to the belt with one of Safariland’s CD-2 Speedloader Holders. The holder is simply a steel clip coated in epoxy for corrosion resistance. To secure a speedloader, the clip features a vinyl pad that keeps spare round secure until you need them. The clip fits all belts up to 2 inches wide.

The Flashlight: TAC5 TAC-1200 Tactical Kit ($90.99)

If you’re out in the woods, a powerful flashlight is a must-have accessory. TAC5 offers its TAC-1200 flashlight for just that purpose. Like its name implies, the TAC-1200 features a maximum output of 1,200 lumens. The light offers five different settings, including an emergency Morse Code SOS signaling, and is built with an anodized-aluminum housing, featuring a crenulated bezel for self-defense use.

The Knife: Ontario Knife Company Cerberus ($265)

Every hiking and outdoors kit needs a solid fixed-blade knife, and the Cerberus from Ontario Knife Company is a solid option that’s made right here in the United States. The knife features a full-tang blade made from D2 tool steel and features a black-oxide finish that’s designed to resist corrosion. The Cerberus is finished with G10 handles and comes equipped with a custom-fitted Kydex sheath.

The Belt: CrossBreed Reversible Nylon Belt ($21.95)

Every outdoor rig needs to be secured with a rugged belt, and the CrossBreed Reversible Nylon Belt is built to handle any rig. The belt is made using a thick double layer of reinforced nylon, which is bound together with five separate rows of stitching. The belt is secured with a non-metallic buckle and measures 1.5 inches wide. The belt is fully reversible with two different colors.


knife-sharpening kit
knife-sharpening kit

First Look: Work Sharp Precision Adjust Elite & Upgrade Kit

Work Sharp is a U.S.-based company that is known for making top-notch knife and tool sharpeners. The company's Precision Adjust Knife Sharpener is a proven performer, and it is capitalizing on the success of that sharpener with the release of the new Precision Adjust Elite and Upgrade Kit.

First Look: Blackhawk Custom Kydex Holster Builder

Blackhawk is a leader in law enforcement and military equipment, and now they have a new custom Kydex holster program where customers can build and order their own holster or magazine carrier directly on their website.

Review: Maxim PDX Pistol

The Maxim PDX line is, in many ways, the ultimate expression of the PDW concept. It’s a small, easy to handle AR-pattern firearm that uses either Maxim’s superb PDW brace in the pistol model or a collapsible stock when sold as a short barrelled rifle.

Alternate Sources for Ammo

With ammunition being in extremely short supply these days, I have resorted to sourcing ammo anywhere I can.

First Look: SIG Sauer Custom Works Spectre P320 XCarry & P365XL Pistols

With the new SIG Custom Works Spectre P320 XCarry and P365XL, the Spectre Series from SIG Sauer has a new look. 

EAA Celebrates 30th Anniversary

Florida-based European American Armory Corporation (EAA) is celebrating its 30th anniversary this year.


Get the best of Shooting Illustrated delivered to your inbox.