Lightweight Instructor Belt, Machined Aluminum, Bronze

Lightweight Instructor Belt, Machined Aluminum, Bronze
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Price: $79.95
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You choose to buy American -- made for you in Phoenix, Arizona.
Beware of Chinese Instructor Belt copies.

*Please note that even though the Easy-Fit sizing has a greater margin for error than the regular every-inch, we still strongly recommend using a measuring tape to check your correct size. Your pants size is not your correct belt size and is usually off by at least 2", and we have found that the markings on other belts are not always accurate. Please read and use our belt sizing guide.


After many years of requests for smaller and lighter versions of our Original Instructor Belt, we have collaborated with Tuff Writer Manufacturing to engineer and build a limited edition 1.25" load-rated Lightweight Instructor Belt.

The buckle and sliding lock bar components are machined from rugged 7075 aluminum, the same high-strength aircraft alloy that AR rifle receivers are made of. Featherweight but strong, the bantam buckle held more than 5,000 lbs. of static stress in lab-testing without breaking (the cheaper 6061 aluminum test buckles barely exceeded 2,000 lbs. before failing).

1.25" aluminum Instructor buckle weight: 1.5 oz./43 g
1.5” carbon steel Instructor buckle weight: 4.0 oz./112 g
1.75" carbon steel Instructor buckle weight: 4.6 oz./129 g

This first-run series of the lightweight buckle is hardcoat anodized in a rich, metallic "Scorched Bronze" finish. 

The floating lock bar is made in two matching anodized aluminum halves that are permanently joined with 18-8 stainless steel set screws torqued to 8-inch lbs.

The belt body is made of our proprietary 1.25" nylon webbing that features double-layer construction and the heavy-duty sewing that you expect of a Wilderness belt. It is available in black, coyote brown, or foliage. It is sewn in our excellent five-stitch pattern that offers our most popular balance of rigidity and comfort. A polymer treatment on the belt tab soaks into the nylon and bonds with it, providing permanent protection from fraying.

Sizing Options

The Lightweight Instructor Belt is available in either regular every-inch or Easy-Fit sizing.

Our Easy-Fit sizing offers simplified fitting for those who do not carry a belt-mounted weapon and don't mind an extra length of belt tongue on their dominant or support side (our belts can be worn with the tail facing either direction). Some competing belts achieve a wider, more generic sizing range just by adding more Velcro to the belt body. However, this makes you pull Velcro through the buckle at the smaller size. We didn't like that and engineered ours to avoid it.

Easy-Fit sizing available in Small, Medium, Large, XL, XXL, 3X-15X. The Easy-Fit system also makes sizing for gifts much easier.

Here are examples of our Easy-Fit compared to the standard, fitted Instructor Belt:

Standard Instructor Belt properly fitted
• 38" size: 36" - 39.5" range of adjustment
• 11" of tongue (at the min. length) / 9" of tongue (when properly fitted)
• 3.5" of adjustment range

• Large: 36" - 41" range of adjustment
• 13" of tongue (at min. length) / 10" of tongue (at the median when properly fitted)
• 5" of adjustment range

Why don't we size all of our belts that way? Good question with a good answer: All of our regular belts are designed to be compatible with holsters and accessories with proper fitting. When the belts are precisely sized for a given waist measurement, the tongue of the belt goes to the center of the 10" loop Velcro on the belt, leaving room on the belt for holsters or other gear. The Easy-Fit model has a longer tongue and more Velcro, so it may overlap the belt to the extent that it limits things that can be put on that side of the belt where the tongue overlaps. While the Easy-Fit is just as capable of load carrying, it does not offer as much dominant-side area as the precise-sized belts, which are our personal preference when practical. This may or may not be a problem for you depending upon your holster or personal preference, but we want our customers to know the potential penalty when making their choice.

Easy-Fit Chart

The Original Instructor Belt was developed in 1983 and has been refined ever since. It is a very strong belt with a specially designed carbon steel or aluminum V-ring buckle in a variety of finishes. The belt was originally designed to clip into a secure system while "instructing" others in high places during mountain rescue training, although they can be used for emergency rappelling with proper training. Our belts have also proven to be a fantastic everyday pants belt for casual or outdoor use, as well as concealed-carry.

Although not intended to replace a rappelling harness or to absorb a fall, the Instructor Belt provides peace of mind over the alternative -- no protection at all. We strongly recommend it for anyone involved in law enforcement, special warfare, or rescue operations where there is a risk of falling out of a helicopter. It has been standard operating procedure for years within the Phoenix Special Assignments Unit (SWAT) to clip into a Wilderness Original Instructor Belt during airborne or skid-riding ops. It has also been used by many professionals who like the safety of being clipped in when working in cherry pickers (the belt's first "save") or other tall structures.

This belt is not intended to replace a standard rappelling harness with leg straps in normal operations. It is intended as an emergency option to clip into when there is a risk of falling, or for emergency rappelling when no other option is available. It will be very uncomfortable to rappel with, but it may save your life -- which is what we intended. The Instructor Belt must be used in conjunction with a harness or rope seat during any non-emergency situation or rappel training. These are inherently dangerous operations which can result in death or serious injury; proper training in these skills is absolutely required.

The Instructor Belt is designed to be a serious piece of rescue/safety equipment that you may have to bet your life on. In lab testing, our Original Instructor Belt with the steel buckle has withstood a minimum of 5,900 lbs. of static stress without failing, to more than 8,000 lbs. of static stress without failing. Results vary with model. See testing data. Ask those who try to copy us if they continually refine the construction and materials they use? Or do they use inferior materials and designs, like heat-sealing or flimsy metal tabs on the end that tear off and shred your belt within a year or two? Our proprietary polymer treatment on the belt tab actually soaks into the core of our nylon and bonds with it, providing permanent protection from fraying. With proper use, your Original Instructor Belt should give you literally years of faithful service.

You don't have to ask us if our gear is top quality; we stand behind our products and include documentation of these results with every Original Instructor Belt, and we post them here on our website. If it's not a Wilderness Original Instructor Belt, it's just a copy. We have never, and will never, produce our belts under any name but our own (*we do produce signature versions specifically for Gunsite and did for EOTAC with their tag AND ours both proudly on the belt).

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