Chances are if you’ve purchased a Kydex holster recently, part of it probably came from Index Fasteners. For over 30 years, the family owned and operated Index Fasteners has been a leading distributor for high-quality fasteners used in industries ranging from Aerospace and Automotive to Military and Medical. Index has built a reputation for selling high quality products, providing excellent customer service, and building long-term partnerships with both their customers and suppliers.
We recently had a chance to visit Index Fasteners at their southern California headquarters and talk to CEO Shane Bearly. Bearly is third generation in the fastener business and an avid off-road and shooting enthusiast. He walked us through Index’s history and how they’ve become a “go to” source for custom holster manufacturers and Do-It-Yourself types.
Index Fasteners has been selling fasteners and related products to large manufacturers and Tier 1 OE suppliers for years. It’s the very core of their business and makes up the majority of their daily operations. By working closely with their customers, they’ve been able to grow their product mix to best suit their client’s needs and demands. As industries change and demand fluctuates, Index has been able to rapidly adapt to changes in the market and become an innovator and champion of pushing the limits. It’s this practice that led them to recently launch their Thermoplastics Division.
The new Thermoplastics Division is the direct result of the explosion in demand by the Law Enforcement, Military, and Civilian markets for thermoplastic products and the related accessories. Materials like Kydex and Boltaron have now become a staple in the holster industry and can be spotted on just about every shooting range across the country. While demand has soared, custom holster manufacturers and Do-It-Yourselfers were faced with limited access to materials and typically met with large minimum orders that were cost prohibitive.
Bearly saw a growing need and market demand, especially being a shooting enthusiast himself. He worked closely with industry leaders, custom manufactures, as well as end consumers to determine what the market needed and how it could be effectively serviced. Most importantly, he wanted to develop a solution that could cost effectively bring products to market that were affordable to the consumer while still maintaining Index’s reputation for quality products and excellent customer service. The new division is the end result.
Since the launch of Index Fasteners’ Thermoplastics Division, Bearly has worked closely with his customers to listen to their needs and find better ways to service them. When asked on multiple occasions by customers on how to get Kydex colors that weren’t even in production, he went straight to the manufacturer and had his own colors produced. It’s been this approach to business that has allowed Index to be on the cutting edge of thermoplastics.
Whether you’re looking to make your own holster or thinking about manufacturing custom holsters for sale, Index has a wide range of products available on their website. They carry fasteners, belt loop clips, inside waist band clips, and even hand tools and dies. Do-It-Yourself types can even check out the Kydex Starter Kits they have for sale. On top of fasteners and hardware, Kydex can be ordered in just about any color and sheet sizes. They stock the commonly requested sizes as well as full 4′ x 8′ sheets. Index even offers custom cutting for those ordering 4′ x 8′ sheets or more.
Their warehouses keep a constant stock of all the popular colors and Bearly is always on the lookout for the next new trend. Since holsters have taken on their own role as an accessory rather than just a utility based product, having a limited color selection just doesn’t cut it anymore. The standards like black, FDE, and Olive Green always sell, but new options like Carbon Fiber and Blood Red have definitely seen an increase in recent popularity. Bearly attributes those trends to his customers and custom holster manufacturers, “Those are the guys that are constantly pushing the design envelope and thinking outside the box.” We asked Bearly what was the next big thing in thermoplastics we could be on the look out for. He simply smiled and stated, “We’re working on it already.” When he tried to press him for more information, all he would tell us is that it would take customization and personalization to a whole new level.
When asked about Index’s secrets to long-term success, Bearly said that it was pretty simple and gave us a couple important areas they focus on. First and foremost, they listen to the customer. If they notice their customers using parts on their holsters that they don’t sell, they find out if it’s a product they should carry and add to their offering. Secondly, they deliver high quality products and customer service to match. They train their sales representatives to be very knowledgable in the products they sell and take pride in making the customer happy. Finally, Bearly says it comes down to the small details. From the moment the customer clicks on the website to when their order arrives on their doorstep, Index examines each step of the process and is constantly looking for improvement.
Next time you’re in the market for fasteners or looking to make your own Kydex holster or knife sheath, check out Index Fasteners. You can visit their website, Facebook page, or give them a call at (800) 230-3964.