Carrying AIWB has changed significantly in the past couple of years with the development of the Grip Concealment Claw. The Claw, not to be confused with the Wedge, is an extra piece of plastic that attaches somewhere under the trigger guard area of the holster to aid in Concealment by pushing against the belt and pulling the grip into the body. The Claw, if used correctly in conjunction with the belt clip, can work wonders for those who have a hard time concealing their firearms at the Appendix Position.
Many AIWB Holsters nowadays are offered with the Claw as an added option, but for those who already have AIWB Holsters without the claw, the question remains: Can a Claw be added to a regular holster and work properly? The answer: a solid maybe.
Yeah- pretty thorough answer, huh? To clarify, let's dig a bit deeper and perhaps you can determine whether or not it's a good idea to try.
Here is an AIWB Holster without the Claw Attachment:
And here is our Claw attachment:
Right away you'll notice that the claw has two mounting holes, while the holster only has 1 hole. This hole also happens to be where the adjustable retention is located, meaning that messing with this spot in any way- messes with the retention. You could potentially use only one hole to mount the claw to the holster. But you would then have to find a much longer screw to accommodate for the thickness of the material, the rubber grommet, the material again and then the claw, and try to match it with the threads of the post that we provide. If you're willing to go this route, only attach the claw to the outer side of the holster, do not stick the claw inside the holster against the rubber grommet.
This can be doable, but potentially frustrating as our hardware does not come from Home Depot or Lowes and we do not stock screws long enough to accommodate this added depth.
If you have a larger firearm or a light/laser bearing variant, your holster may look something like this:
Now with this holster we have the second hole, but it doesn't measure the same distance c/c that the Claw measures. So we're back to the one mounting point, with a side serving of frustration at the hardware for not being the sufficient length.
Another issue that you may run into (let's say you found the right hardware and used the one mounting point) is the Claw not matching up with the belt clip. Let's back up a second: in order for the claw to be effective in concealing the gun- the claw has to push against the belt. If your holster has a low ride height or any kind of cant angle, installing the claw may be useless. Unless it aligns with the belt clip perfectly, the claw will bulge out awkwardly under or over the belt line.
It is for this reason (the claw not lining up with the belt attachment) that we don't offer every firearm with the claw attachment- not every firearm is compatible and we don't want to put out a product with sub par quality. Same rule applies with ride heights and cant angles. The claw will only work with certain specific configurations, mainly a high ride height and straight draw (see below):
This AIWB Holster was made specifically to work with the Claw and exhibits the ideal configuration for concealed carry at the appendix position. The ride height allows for a good, solid purchase on the grip, conducive to a fast draw. The clip is curved, offering 100% clip-to-belt contact for sturdy carry and less printing. The claw perfectly aligns with the clip, and therefore the belt, pushing against the belt concealing the pistol's grip.
You'll also notice that the claw is tucked towards the frame of the firearm. This is part of our minimalist design, lessening the overall width of the holster, offering a smaller footprint. Also- the adjustable retention is located behind the claw, without being effected by its presence.
In conclusion, instead of purchasing a claw and adding it to your existing AIWB Holster, we highly recommend purchasing a holster that was designed around the claw itself. This will offer you better performance, as well as an overall better concealed carry experience.
Have any additional Questions? Sound off in the comments -or- contact Customer Service here.