Here is our
original fire extinguisher setup. A too-small extinguisher,
being held in place by a hose clamp with some rubber hose cut
to fit under the clamp to keep the sport bar fabric from tearing.
I admit it.
My original fire extinguisher was not only too small, but it was
not mounted very nicely or safely. The truth is, nobody offered
a reasonable and readily-available alternative for mounting in a
Jeep in a convenient place...until now.
from Direct Effect Enterprises. Direct Effect contacted me and said
that they had a new product designed to not only hold a fire extinguisher
in place in any vehicle with a sport or roll bar, but that would
also provide convenient handles for passengers to hold on to. Always
the skeptic, I told them that I just wasn't sure if I would trust
Velcro holding a projectile above my head in my Jeep in the event
of disaster, but that they could feel free to send one out for me
to check out.
The box arrived
and, frankly, I was stunned at the quality of the ComboGrip. I had
only seen pre-production photos of it, previously. The ComboGrip
is incredibly well made and uses very high quality fabrics, webbing,
and Velcro. It should hold up a good long time, even in a topless
I took the ComboGrip
out to put it on and, as per the instructions, laid it out flat
on the ground to sort of get the lay of the land. There are a lot
of straps on this thing and Ihad a bit of trouble understanding
what each one was supposed to do, at first.
opened. Look at all those straps!
Once you decypher
where everything goes, installing the ComboGrip is a pretty straight-forward
affair. If you have a Jeep with a soundbar, you will need a poking
implement (read, long, flat screwdriver) to get the straps down
between the soundbar and the sport bar. It's a little tricky, but
patience will get you through without tearing anything. Figuring
out which strap does what is confusing at first, but once you figure
it out, you'll understand.
straps are in between the sport bar and soundbar, you fasten
the straps in front.
straps a bit at a time, other then the ones that hold the fire
extinguisher in place.
Fasten all of
the straps a bit at a time, going from one to the next and repeating
until you have sinched up all but the ones that hold the fire extinguisher
in place. You should now have two grab handles properly placed and
some straps in the middle hanging down.
Here is where
the ComboGrip design gets really smart. What I worried the most
about, was safely hanging my fire extinguisher above my head. The
ComboGrip actually has three ways of holding the extinguisher in
place. First, the fire extinguisher is held by two hoop straps.
These are really just safety hoops in case the second, main, set
of Velcro straps fails. Lastly, there is a third safety strap that
loops through the handle of the fire extinguisher. So, you see,
if the Velcro straps comes loose, the hoops should keep it in place.
If those fail, then the third strap should keep it from falling
loose. The caveat here, though, is if it is just held by the last
hoops, it will swing around like a bat if you are rolling, so make
sure everything is nice and tight. The chances of the second straps
failing, though, are slim to none. The straps are increibly strong
and have a very large Velcro contact area, which provides a lot
If the main
Velcro straps fail, the secondary hoops keep the extinguisher
from falling loose.
In the event
of a total failure, the handle safety strap will catch the extinguisher.
I had some extra
strap length with our extinguisher and double-wrapped it around
the handle for extra extra safety. This should give my setup that
extra little bit of insurance against flying loose.
is the final setup of our ComboGrip. The installation is
clean looking and everything is held in place solidly. The
handles, for me, are not really all that useful, as i do
not have a back seat in our Jeep. However, they do add a
nice touch and are good for grabbing if you're climbing
around in the Jeep to get something out, etc..
Velcro straps are very strong and the design seems sound. I don't
know that anything holding something above your head can ever have
a 100% guarantee against failure, but the ComboGrip sure seems strong
to me. So, the bottom line, is that this skeptic really likes the
ComboGrip and has no intention of sending it back.