Along with the launch of the new Alpha flashlight last month, Elzetta has also introduced their unique Speed Clip accessory which facilitates the attachment of Elzetta Modular Flashlights to a pocket, pouch, or belt. The Speed Clip is designed for tool-free installation and allows bezel-up or bezel-down carry with any of the Elzetta bodies, tailcaps or bezels.
A sample of the Speed Clip, which retails for $15.00, was provided for review by Elzetta Design.
Elzetta Speed Clip – Overview
When I asked Elzetta’s Dave Barnett about the Speed Clip, he shared seven criteria that went into its design:
- Must install/remove without the use of tools
- Facilitate bezel-up or bezel-down carry
- Fit all Elzetta Modular Flashlights (Alpha, Bravo, and Charlie)
- Require no modifications to the flashlight
- Accelerate deployment of flashlight from pocket, pouch, or belt
- Deflect, yield, or break away under high force
- Enhance use with pistol (provide enhanced grip when used with various pistol/flashlight techniques)
These criteria led away from the traditional low-profile clip used on most lights and resulted in a unique two-piece design consisting of a rubber ring and a tough polymer collar that houses a stainless steel wire clip. Installation and removal is relatively simple and can be accomplished in less than a minute after a little practice.
The rubber ring is installed with its inner lip fitting into any of the many grooves present on an Elzetta flashlight body. Then, somewhat like a compression fitting, the collar is slid onto the ring creating a very tight friction fit. The rubber ring should be positioned with its inner lip facing toward the tailcap for bezel-up carry and away from the tailcap for bezel-down carry. It’s a tight fit between the two parts so placing a very small amount of liquid soap onto the surface of the ring may aid installation.
The bottom of the collar is narrower than the top which prevents it from slipping beyond the rubber ring. Once everything is in place, the clip is very secure and will not twist or come off without deliberate effort. The stainless steel wire may be bent to adjust the clip for different types of carry.
When configured for bezel-down carry, the polymer collar can also function as a combat ring in some tactical holds, such as with a handgun.
After seeing my review of the Elzetta Alpha, one astute reader pointed out that the clip can even be installed onto the tailcap, allowing the light to be carried slightly deeper in the pocket. This works with any of the tailcaps although it does prevent the rotary tailcap from tightening far enough for constant-on operation. Thanks to the modular design of the Elzetta flashlights, this also makes it much easier to transfer the clip from one light to another, simply by swapping the tailcaps.
Elzetta Speed Clip – Conclusions
The Elzetta Speed Clip has fit and worked well with all of the Elzetta bodies I have tested it with. Installation and removal was a bit difficult at first, partly due to my poor technique, but had I followed the directions and used a tiny amount of soap I’m sure it would have been easier. After installing and removing the clip literally dozens of times over the course of the review I have gotten much better at the process and can now do it quite easily. Even with this extreme amount of activity the parts still fit together snugly.
Pocket retention has been good and the clip has managed to keep the lights positioned where I want them. It does not grip a pocket (or strap or belt) as aggressively as some other clips but that is in line with the “speed” aspect of the design and the smooth stainless steel wire provides a nice balance between retention and ease of access. Due to its smooth design I can’t think of any way it would snag or hang when being withdrawn from a pocket.
With its large collar the Speed Clip is bulkier than more traditional pocket clips and may appear out of proportion to some, particularly when installed on the Alpha. In my experience so far this has mostly been a matter of aesthetics as the clip hasn’t made any of the lights feel bulkier when I have carried them.
As a matter of fact, I believe the extra girth of the Speed Clip has made the light more comfortable to carry when used in a bezel-down configuration with the Bravo or Charlie. The wide collar seems to hold the light closer to vertical than a close-fitting clip would.
When judged against its design criteria I consider the Speed Clip to be a success, with the caveat that number 7 would only apply to the bezel-down configuration. Those criteria, and thus the design of the clip, aren’t for everyone but those with the right set of requirements and expectations will appreciate the design.
The Speed Clip may be purchased directly from Elzetta Design or through their retailers.
For more information about the flashlights shown, be sure to check out their full reviews here on FlashlightGuide.com