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View Full Version : Opinions on Mil-Spec Tac. Gear


cabofdoom
February 04, 2005, 22:20
Title says it all. The good or bad...like the looks of their medical supply bag in Major Surplus catalog...but Im a cheap bastard and don't even want to waste the twenty bucks


Thanks in Advance


COD

Beepy
February 04, 2005, 22:55
There are some things out there that seem ok, I think that this might be made by the same company http://p198.ezboard.com/fzionscampfrm4.showMessage?topicID=287.topic

The guys that make the wanna be south african vests stink (I know I fell into that trap)

I got a backpack that was made by the same guys from the first link and it did seem fairly robust. I got rid of it because it was way to small for what I needed. I also have a pack that is a direct copy of the blackhawk raptor that is really as robust as the real deal (its been beat up on several elk hunts and many coyote hunts I compared it to the real blackhawk almost identical) So there is decent copies out there but buyer beware!!

B Wood
February 05, 2005, 22:26
Real simple...you get what you pay for.

Secondly - If you are entrusting your life to your gear...then invest heavily unless you have a death wish. If you are a "casual" user...then pinch pennies. You will end up spending more in the long run due to gear failures though.

Sword of Laban
February 09, 2005, 15:04
My only regret is that our board supporting vendors are not carrying this for those of us who simply cannot afford a Mesa or other top of the line gear. I admit I am not planning on deploying any time soon. I also hate the fact that this is made in China.

Function for the most part, with the exception of lower grade snaps is good. I attached an Austrian ruck and butt pack to the belt and shoulder D rings of my vest in the above link. I have 8 fully loaded FAL mags, 2 each in the triple AR mag pouches, 2 in the radio pouch and two in the single stack pouch. Pistol mags, flash light's, grub and sundries in the utility pouch and pistol in the pistol pouch. The ruck has 50 pounds worth of gear and the butt pack around 8. I have been running hills with this rig 3.3 miles in the dark AM for around 3 months. I have also used it in matches, minus the ruck. So far it has held up very well. Lost a lot of its stiffness but all stitching and connectors are looking the same as the day I received it. I will take some updated pictures and post them.

Beepy
February 09, 2005, 15:51
Thanks SoL (hmmmm) I am a professed lurker on the Zion's camp board, lots of good stuff loved the packing at church topic (my bish and his wife both do, with about 50% of the congregation)! :]

anyways whats with the "the walk or the death" tag line?

might work better with "marchez ou la mort"

I would love some updated picks, the assault pack that I have I think was made by the same people and its working just as good as my friends blackhawk and at 1/3 the price!

Sword of Laban
February 09, 2005, 16:36
Sorry pulled it off the top of my head from nearly twenty year old neglected French, Mission Suisse de Geneve 1984 – 1986. If you don’t use it does fade away. As for packing in Church, God helps those who help themselves.

So this guy is sitting in church and four Muslim terrorists crash into the chapel and open fire. The man cries out to the Lord, Oh Lord if you will only save me and my family I will devote the rest of my life to serving you and my fellow man. Right then one of the terrorists, who happen to be standing in a tight group pulls a grenade and throws it. The grenade lands directly on his lap spoon still depressed, the man quickly pushes it off his lap. Another terrorist reloads his pistol then slips on a pool of blood loses grip sending it flying into the mans hand, he throws it back. The terrorist advance down the isle when they get to the man one points his AK at his head and pulls the trigger, click - the weapon does not discharge he cycles the bolt and pulls the trigger again, click no joy. He hands his AK to the man draws his pistol and drills one into the mans head sending him instantly to the Pearly Gates.

Upon arriving he says oh Lord why did you forsake me in my hour of need? The Lord replied, after giving you a grenade, a pistol and an assault rifle I figured you had changed your mind.

Beepy
February 09, 2005, 17:23
Nice, Like that one

Mission Fiji, Suva (Nouvelle Caledonie) 95-97

Looking foward to the pics too!

Sword of Laban
February 11, 2005, 13:04
Sorry I was hit hard by a virus yestarday and actually took a sick day.

Here is my Milspec vest and pouches.

http://209.180.175.75/sword/gear/ruckvest8.jpg

http://209.180.175.75/sword/gear/ruckvest1.jpg

http://209.180.175.75/sword/gear/ruckvest4.jpg

http://209.180.175.75/sword/gear/ruckvest5.jpg

http://209.180.175.75/sword/gear/ruckvest7.jpg

http://209.180.175.75/sword/gear/ruckvest6.jpg

This is after three months of use, rucking at least 3 times a week often 4 and sometimes 5 for 3.3 miles of hills. And a couple run and gun matches. Mud cleaned off surprisingly easily.

cabofdoom
February 11, 2005, 16:24
Originally posted by Sword of Laban
Function for the most part, with the exception of lower grade snaps is good. I attached an Austrian ruck and butt pack to the belt and shoulder D rings of my vest in the above link. I have 8 fully loaded FAL mags, 2 each in the triple AR mag pouches, 2 in the radio pouch and two in the single stack pouch. Pistol mags, flash light's, grub and sundries in the utility pouch and pistol in the pistol pouch. The ruck has 50 pounds worth of gear and the butt pack around 8. I have been running hills with this rig 3.3 miles in the dark AM for around 3 months. I have also used it in matches, minus the ruck. So far it has held up very well. Lost a lot of its stiffness but all stitching and connectors are looking the same as the day I received it. I will take some updated pictures and post them.


The only question I have is, is this vest set up to take a hydration bladder?

Sword of Laban
February 11, 2005, 20:05
It does have a larg mesh pocket that takes up the entire rear panel. Other than that Blackhawk makes this.

MOLLE Hydration pouch (http://www.blackhawkindustries.com/product_detail.asp?product_id=2823&d=)

http://209.180.175.75/sword/hyd.jpg

I paid $110 shipped for this also not shown two SAW pouches, 1 12 guage shotgun shell pouch 16 shells, a double 40mm grenade pouch and a MOLLE dropleg panel.

firefuzz
February 11, 2005, 22:08
SoL,

Do your mags rattle much in that pouch?

Rob

Sword of Laban
February 14, 2005, 12:39
Howdy Rob, no the triple mag pouches are a touch tight with two FAL mags so no movement even while running, the double mag pouches have elastic that keeps the single mags tight as well. Last Wednesday I did notice a little rattle from somewhere while running but I have not been able to track it down yet. I do have a lot of gear on the vest as well as the pack and butt pack but it sounded like it was coming from the vest, my pistol mags are a bit loose, single stacks, and it may have been them.

cabofdoom
February 14, 2005, 14:46
Sword of Laban, thanks for the full eval.

I can always count on members to come through

THANKS and
:whiskey: :whiskey:

COD

Deltaten
February 14, 2005, 18:48
Cab and Sword:

Been following this thread with great anticipation. I have a listing on the same vest from Clearview Investments. Been wondering just how good a deal it was.
Looks like I'll hafta order one.

Thanks,
Paul

B Wood
February 14, 2005, 21:27
Here is mine

Practical Tactical Mesa vest - made by High Speed Gene
Tactical Tailor 5.56 pouches that I use for .308..I use a piece of sealed foam rubber in the bottom of each mag pouch, or a dressing pack. Elevates that mags enough to grab easily.

The Tactical Tailor Pouches are cheap, and adjustable for tension with a stretch cord around each mag pouch.

I have a camelbak unit in the back pouch. I add other pouches as needed, or wanted. Usually I hve 4 mag pouches holding two mags each....knife pouch, first aid pouch, camelback, etc, etc. It changes all the time.

B Wood
February 14, 2005, 21:29
more pics

B Wood
February 14, 2005, 21:30
a few more

cabofdoom
February 14, 2005, 23:22
Originally posted by B Wood
I have a camelbak unit in the back pouch. I add other pouches as needed, or wanted. Usually I hve 4 mag pouches holding two mags each....knife pouch, first aid pouch, camelback, etc, etc. It changes all the time.

Sword...truth is , I agree with B Wood in that I can always add "Other " make and model pouches as funds and desire dictate but hows the MOLLE base vest holding up?

Thanks in advance


COD

B Wood
February 14, 2005, 23:37
cabofdoom -

I went thru a number of vest to find the right one. First off...Molle is the way to go. Flexible, Flexible, Flexible. I remember when Eagle made set up specific vests...i.e...M-16, Mp-5, etc. Then they got progressive with the interchangeable panels....and now Molle. I still have my old vests...but much prefer the newer Molle style.

For Molle vests I have two vests, and a Tactical Tailor 2 pc MAV rig. (I don't count it as a vest). Vest are the Practical Tactical Mesa and the Blackhawk DOAV.

I was as ANTI-Blackhawk as there ever was.....I hate the fact that they make gear in Viet Nam. But I have to admit, their DOAV vest is quite good. It was more comfy new than my Mesa was. The MESA tends to start stiff...and relax after a while...the DOAV started comfy...time will tell how it holds up. The Mesa vest is made in the USA unlike the DOAV. I think the MESA series is BOMB PROOF. FN74 here helped design it actually.

I saw where someone mentioned that laying out cash is tough for vests....(paraphrase). Many of the tactical companies such as Eagle have had active duty discounts in place for years. Simply ask.

I don't think you can go wrong withj Blackhawk STRIKE pouches, Tactical Tailor or Practical Tactical / High Speed Gene, as well as Eagle products. I would stick to those......names.....if you do go other brand..inpsect the hell out of the sewing and seams. There are some good cheap vests out there.

Good luck to all!

Sword of Laban
February 15, 2005, 12:47
I would say my post above pretty much covered the durability of the vest so far I am close to daily use with no wear detected so far. The stitching is done with the same kind of machinery blackhawk uses. The MESA was my first choice but as I was saving up for it my wife, not knowing any better decided to buy me a complete set off of ebay. I would never have done this myself, never, but it turned out to be pretty good gear.

Here is the current auction

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&category=36071&item=6510974286&rd=1

B Wood
February 15, 2005, 19:43
Sounds like you got one hell of a wife Sword! Mine puts up with the tactical gear around, all the guns, etc...but would NEVER BUY a gun or piece of gear for me.....Give me time though....she was ANTI GUN when I met her, 2 years later she and I shoot togeher.

Any tips for how to get the ole lady to buy gear? Would save my mad money account for other things! LOL

PS..vest looks great!

Sword of Laban
February 15, 2005, 20:22
Yep give lots of well deserved love and attention and, this is the most difficult part, learn how to be "Romantic" . I have learned by trial and error and I take notes cause it makes no sence to me. Cooking dinner and doing the dishes gets a nice try but jotting down a quick thinking of you on a card and sending it in the mail gets tears and all kinds of fringe benifits? Hell I'm never going understand but I am learning what to do at least. I also have learned that romantic is subjective changes from woman to woman and even time of day!

TimW
February 17, 2005, 01:29
While I am obviously biased toward the MESA vest, I love my South African P-83. If I could only have one vest (the MESA aside), it would be the South African. the best thing is, when you can find them, they're less than $100. In fact, I picket up one that lokos like it's never been issued, for $60.00 recently.

I paid $75.00 for my first one, which was well worn, but in great condition. This is probably one of the best kit values out there. Look for them.

However, it's hit-or-miss when using with a FAL. Some folks report great success with 2 mags per pouch. Me, I could only get one. Which led me to the MESA.

I still have my two SA vests. One of which I will redo in multicam (one of these days!).

Sword of Laban
February 17, 2005, 14:25
Tim to be honest I still want the MESA. I do like my vest but the lack of padding is a disadvantage though I love the heavy-duty zipper front and no slip shoulder pads. If I wear cold weather gear I use my GI belt extender and the fastex chest straps rather than the zipper that way I do not have to adjust the vest at all.

I love MOLLE, I have gone through a ton combinations each time enhancing my functionality. Also though MOLLE is more spendy; over time it gives you the ability to configure you vest to meet your needs and each purchase does not have to break the bank as you can slowly piece together what you need. I really like your gear and pouches. I also saw the camel back canteens on your site. Awsome!

I gave my vest a bit more of a durability test than I would have wanted to this morning during my run. I was heading down hill at a decent clip and tripped over something, hell its dark you know. I landed on my left side mostly sliding around 10 feet before coming to a rest. I tore up my sweatshirt and sweatpants, got some scrapes and bruises busted the lamp in my mini-mag light my radio pouch got some surface tears, first layer none all the way through, and the ammo pouch next to it had some scratches on the snap only. Other than that no problems with the MOLLE vest at all or pouches. Everything still tight got up checked for damages walked off some kneed pain for about 200 feet then finished my run. It was a bit breezy as my clothes were in shreds and it was 28 degrees but I stayed warm thanks to the vest and the fact that I was running. 270 pound man plus a 70 pound vest and ruck makes for a substantial impact.

I am going to have to give a review on the Colman florescent minilamp if you have a “Big Lots” by you can get one or more for only $3.99 each. They retail normally for around $16.00. They run for 6 hours on 4 AA alkaline batteries and are bright enough to light up a room. You can see mine on the back of my pack in the picture with my FAL above. Heck of a good deal even at $16.00. I have two and am cleaning out Big Lots tonight of the rest of their stock. Vehicles have no problem seeing me in the dark and early twilight. I’m going to add one to the front of my vest so I can avoid tripping on noseeums. I use rechargeable batteries.

TimW
February 17, 2005, 14:54
SoL:

Glad you're OK. RickD (in Arizona) was doing a run with the MESA loaded down with FAL mags (carried in the SST 308 pouches) and tripped on a rock. However, he landed mags first, and cracked a rib. OUch. :)

The BPG MOLLE vests are a good value. I just don't like the total body coverage, esp here in Arizona.

B Wood
February 17, 2005, 21:38
Tim,

I take it you have the SST 308 pouches in stock? I need 2 - 4 in OD. HOw much are they?

thanks!

PS..thanks for the great products!

TimW
February 17, 2005, 23:19
Originally posted by B Wood
Tim,

I take it you have the SST 308 pouches in stock? I need 2 - 4 in OD. HOw much are they?

thanks!

PS..thanks for the great products!

$45.00 each. I think I've got 4 in stock. I'll include shipping in the price.

B Wood
February 17, 2005, 23:35
Originally posted by TimW


$45.00 each. I think I've got 4 in stock. I'll include shipping in the price.

Put me down for two. Will call you tomorrow with the payment details. OD color.

Thanks!

Brian

TimW
February 17, 2005, 23:41
Originally posted by B Wood


Put me down for two. Will call you tomorrow with the payment details. OD color.

Thanks!

Brian

Good on the color..cuz that's all I got! :)

Deltaten
February 22, 2005, 21:12
Sword, Cab, et al:

Order from Clearview came today.

The Mil-Spec Tac-vest *IS* very stiff. The mag holders will fit FAL mags, w/a little help from a pc if styrofoam or spare whatzis in the bottom. Not thrilled w/the holster on the off side and the cant, but ya can't have it all...can ya? ;)

Wondering if running it thru a couple of laundry cycles will take some 'o the starch outta it??

SO far, it feels much better than the GI "Y" and belt I've been sportin' Time and use will tell...I guess

Vest, belt, keepers, hangers, 2 spare/removable velco-on pistol mags, 4 mag pouches (non-movable), 3 pistol mag pouches (non-movable), ID velcro, utility pouch, compass pouch, and a paddaed shoulder strap. Adjustable sides and shoulders, with a couple of "D's" thrown in.

What more could ya need for a weekend at Bernie's?? :

Mebbe a matching butt-pack, and a pair of canteens??

Thanks for pushing me over the edge, guys;
Paul

Sword of Laban
February 24, 2005, 15:03
No problem. I just sweated in mine a bunch with it fully loaded to loosen it up. Its pretty comfy now. How is the materials and stiching? You are going to have to give it a good full load test run or two. My Miltech chest harness fell apart during my first match with it but my Milspec is doing great and I am abusing it.

cabofdoom
February 24, 2005, 16:49
Sword of Laban...thanks for the continuing evaluation of the vest. I didn't expect even half this much input when I posed the question. Seems like MilSpec(at least their Molle Vest) is one of those ocassions where you get a solid product for a fair price


Thanks again......and a :whiskey:

COD