Retention Ring Overview and Setup | Put a Ring on It!

Man has been dropping things since the dawn of time. From the ball, to rocks, and sick beats, nothing seems to stay in our hands for long. Since just after the dawn of time, we've been trying to find ways to stop this occurrence, with varying levels of success. The latest option in this never ending endeavor is Retention Ring.

What is the Retention Ring

Retention Ring is a fairly simple device on the surface. You get a piece of cord, and a rubber ring affixed to said cord. This cord is then attached to your gear, and the ring goes on your finger. Should you lose your grasp on your gear, Retention Ring stops it from making friends with the pavement. That's an incredibly simplified version of things. Here's what the company has to say about it before we take a deeper dive:

The Retention ring is an accessory for just about anything that allows you to securely hold onto what you have in your hand. It can also be used to easily access items in your pockets or bags!

The Details

Once we move past the pure basics of things, there's actually quite a bit going on with Retention Ring. The rubber ring comes in three different sizes, ranging from 0.875-1.125 in internal diameter to fit even the meatiest of mitts. Cords are offered in a variety of colors to include black, safety orange, glow in the dark, purple, and more. Additionally, length varies from 5.75-7.5 inches with three different options to choose from.

Finally, we have both open and closed loops. Open variations allow the user to tie a knot of their preference to help secure the Retention Ring to their gear, varying length and level or security. Closed loops versions simply loop through themselves for attachment, making for a more simple addition, though it may not be compatible with all gear configurations.

Retention Ring
The Retention Ring RRQS in action

There are also some specific use Retention Ring versions available directly from the company. These include options for POM pepper spray, flashlights from Streamlight, Modlite, and Cloud Defensive, and more.

How to Use the Retention Ring

From flashlights, to pepper spray, cellphones, and more, there are more ways to use Retention Ring than you can shake a stick at. Over the past year or so I've experimented with a handful of configurations, and there are a few that stand out for me. That being said, just because some configurations aren't my preference, doesn't mean they aren't viable.

Retention Ring
Retention Ring helps keep things on hand, even for the butteriest of fingers

It's up to you to mix and match to see how you can best integrate Retention Ring into your life. Below are some common configurations that I often see, and some I use personally.

Pepper Spray

Quality pepper spray, such as POM, is a key part of my EDC, and something I rarely leave home without. In the event that you have to transition to a lethal tool after the application of OC, most people don't think about retaining their spray. I'm guilty of this line of thinking, and lately it's come to my attention that the idea of dropping my OC may be flawed. Applying lethal force to one threat doesn't mean that others present may have not crossed that threshold yet. Retaining our pepper spray for subsequent use may help to avoid further application of lethal force. With our hands filled with firearms, keeping spray in our hands is suboptimal, as is trying to re-index it while shooting.

Retention Ring
Retention Ring helps maintain custody our pepper spray without interfering with a firing grip

With Retention Ring, we can maintain control and custody in situations like these. Typically I carry my OC in my dominant hand in order to keep my support hand available for flashlight use. That may be changing, as using my support hand allows me to rapidly swap between lethal and less lethal tools as the situation dictates. The nature of this configuration also ensures consistent indexing of the POM spray thanks to its slightly more rigid nature.

Handheld Flashlights

Handheld flashlights seem to be one of the most popular options for pairing with Retention Ring. Some people use it to help draw their light, using the ring to help pull it from their pocket. Others need to the retention when transitioning to a two-handed shooting stance, letting the light dangle from their finger until needed once again. I've toyed around with this on my Cloud Defensive MCH using a Thyrm LPC, along with the standard clip of the Surefire Stiletto.

Think of it as a flexible version of the the Thyrm Switchback. Just in this case you have more control over the cordage length, loop size, color, attachment location, and more.

Tool Retention

This is an aspect of Retention Ring which immediately stood out for me upon release, but I only recently took advantage of. Over the past few months I've had the opportunity to act as an Assistant Instructor for folks like Tom Givens, Darryl Bolke, Steve Fisher, and others. Part of my duties have included trouble shooting issues with guns and gear. My normal tool kit is a little unwieldy, and hasn't always made it to class with me. Pulling out a Leatherman or Swiss Army Knife has solved most issues, but they're not always up to snuff unfortunately.

Retention Ring
Retention Ring helping to keep my Combat Sight Tool, and Pistol Mounted Optics Tool at hand.

After lots of procrastination, I finally picked up a Combat Sight Tool, and Pistol Mounted Optics Tool from Freddie Blish at Patriot Products AZ. These handy guys cover most of my bases in a much smaller package than what I typically pack. That small size had me a little hesitant, worried that I may lose them on the range. Luckily, a quick application of Retention Ring not only lashes them together, but also helps avoid any accidental drops into the grass/sand/etc.

Of course these aren't the only tools that'd work here, but you get the idea.

RRQS Tuff Strips for Revolver Reloads

Quick Strips, Tuff Strips, and similar loaders are some of the most popular ways of carrying spare ammunition for a wheelgun. Often I see people fumble to pull these from pockets, and quickly toss them to the ground mid-loading when a threat presents itself. In a platform with limited ammunition and drawn out loading times, throwing your one source of spare rounds might not be the best solution.

Retention Ring
The RRQS from Retention Ring combines the stellar Tuff Strip with better security on your person

The RRQS is a simple solution that works incredibly well. A metal grommet permanently affixes a Retention Ring to the Tuff Strip, helping to keep your rounds off the ground. Available in five different calibers from .22LR to .30-30WIN, most wheelgunners have their bases covered. Capacity ranges from five to ten rounds on a strip, helping shooters customize the RRQS for their specific needs.

Closing Thoughts on the Retention Ring

Retention Ring is a product that I've grown to have more appreciation for over time. Admittedly, I wasn't very enthusiastic at launch, but more time has allowed me to see and experience the product in new configurations that have shifted my opinion. In fact, while writing this piece, I actually ordered another ring as more ideas began popping into my head for further experimentation.

With nearly endless options for setting up your gear, at a low cost of entry, I think it's definitely worthwhile to give Retention Ring a try for yourself. See what people have done online, try a few variations, and you might find yourself a convert before you know it.

Check out all the products Retention Ring has to offer >>HERE<<

Author's Note: My Retention Ring products are a mix of personally purchased, and provided by the owner of Retention Ring. I maintain a personal relationship with the owner of the company which predates the creation of said product. At no time was an expectation of media coverage, positive or otherwise, provided by either party. 

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About Daniel Reedy 389 Articles
Daniel holds instructor certifications from Rangemaster, Agile Training & Consulting, and the NRA. He has received training from Craig Douglas, Tom Givens, and Steve Fisher among others. He also has experience competing in USPSA, CAS, 3 Gun, and Steel Challenge. In his free time Daniel enjoys petting puppies and reading the Constitution. His work is also published by AmmoLand, Recoil Concealment, and Air Force Times. Daniel has also written and edited for The Kommando Blog.

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