Sometimes, simple solutions are best. I was introduced to a company called ArachniGRIP a few months ago, and they have produced a simple product called the "Slide Spider." So what is it, exactly?
The ArachniGRIP Slide Spider, for all intents and purposes, is basically a fitted strip of rubberized grippy tape that has been laser-cut to fill in the channels of factory slide serrations for twenty or so popular manufacturers and various models such as Glock, Beretta, Sig Sauer, Smith & Wesson, and CZ, just to name a few.
The Slide Spider comes in quality packaging, and includes a set of 2 Slide Spiders and an alcohol cleaning swab to clean and remove any surface oils or gunk from the slide prior to application. Installation is simple, straightforward, and a novice can apply these in about 5 minutes.
For those that like a bit of flair on their personal defense weapons, the Slide Spider can be ordered with the ArachniGRIP logo, a red spider, or in simple black. Mine came with my CT50 logo emblazoned on them as an additional customization option. Pretty cool option if you’re into that kind of thing.
Once the slide has been cleaned and dried, carefully center the Slide Spider on the top of the slide, and gently and carefully press the slide groove extensions down into the grooves of the rear slide serrations. That’s it.
The Slide Spiders seem like a great simple traction enhancement in theory, but how do they work in real life?
Very, very well.
I was a bit skeptical at first, and I had intended to test out the Slide Spider’s traction properties by slathering the slide in dish soap to see how well they truly grip, however, that test has already been done before and the results are readily viewable on YouTube.
Not wanting to replicate a test that had already been done, I chose instead to go my usual route, head out to the mountains, toss my gun in the mud, and run some manipulation drills. I’m happy to report that with a wet, muddy pistol, gloved and ungloved, the Slide Spiders offered a terrific balance of traction without slipping, snagging, or chafing.
I’ve also carried one of my Slide Spider’ed pistols AIWB using an Armordillo LUX, with no discomfort or chafing to my soft abdomen, nor did it present a snagging issue when practicing my draw.
Aside from the obvious benefits of enhanced traction to effectively manipulate your weapon under stress, there are two immediately obvious benefits to using ArachniGRIP Slide Spiders in a law enforcement capacity and for the serious private citizen:
- Department Policy: Many agencies such as mine, require that approved duty weapons remain mechanically unmodified from factory condition in order to carry them in the field. Much like aftermarket grips, the Slide Spider enhances the functionality of the pistol without violating policy. There are no mechanical modifications to the pistol itself, and can enhance officer performance and efficient manipulation under stress, which increases officer safety, and the safety of those around them.
- Customization for the Everyman: Not everyone can afford to send their slide off to a custom shop to have enhanced slide serrations cut into their slides. Additionally, slide serration cuts are not as straightforward as they seem. Everyone and their mother seems to have a CNC machine these days, and a lot of companies now offer slide serration cuts to the general public. What needs to be taken into account is that some slides are not 100% consistent in their fabrication, and tolerance adjustments must be made to ensure that CNC cuts don’t take too much slide material away, or cut too deeply, thus weakening the slide composition itself. Even popular and reputable custom shops have been known to cut too deeply with their designs – sure the slide looks pretty, but if it cracks under stress because too much material is taken off or an end-user uses a hot hand-load, catastrophic results can occur. If you desire enhanced traction without the hefty custom shop price tag, ArachniGRIP’s Slide Spiders are worthy of your consideration, especially considering that they retail for a scant $20.
The only consideration worth noting, is that ArachniGRIP Slide Spiders don’t account for all of the aftermarket sights out there. Some models are pre-cut to accommodate TRUGlo rear sights, but the end user should note that some modification may be required to fit their particular rear sight set-up. One of my G19s for example, wear the excellent Way of The Gun square-notch contrast sights, and I did have to trim my Slide Spiders for them to fit. Trimming a Slide Spider is easily achieved with a little careful measurement and an Exacto knife. No big deal.
All-in-all, these are a great option worthy of consideration, and fall solidly in line with a product that works, works well, is durable, and cost effective.
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