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Old December 14, 2019, 16:46   #293
hueyville
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FALaholic #: 74557
Join Date: Aug 2014
Location: Foothills of the Blueridge Mountains
Posts: 7,355
Their Fight Light gear is a little better than disposable as my primary kit is mostly fight light and has held up fine as little as it is used. If I were the Chief Petty Officer for a SEAL Team and had nobody questioning my gear costs per high value mission would buy every member of the team a brand new Tactical Tailor Fight Light kit in best color for upcoming mission or just keep a dozen Fight Light kits in multicam, digital woodland, digital desert and coyote.

For a mission that may be out in the deep dark woods for a possibly long period of time every team member would pull a new kit in chosen color/pattern. Would order all shipped wirhout any labels so the team uniforms are scrubbed unless choose to Velcro on any insignia. Would keep all used kits for fly in, spend 30 to 90 minutes extracting or killing a target where longest part of mission other than flight in and out would be gathering lap tops, hard drives, thumb drives and anything paper of possible value. While the Fight Light is not as durable as a standard issue uniform which is made to be worn regularly for an entire deployment with just a few uniforms in rotation of clean, dirty, laundry and repair.

I have spent fourty years rock and ice climbing and about thirty of that with high altitude mountaineering mixed in. Now my rock climbing is predominantly east coast one to five pitch moderate cragging and ice climbing one to three pitch first ascents not ever climbed by anyone. (a pitch is generally a rope length but based on best place to break a climb up into sections with safe belays a pitch can vary from fifty to two hundred feet) based on climb may carry a single 8.5 to 9mm rope up to a single 11mm rope from 120 to 200 feet long bit usually a 10mm diameter by 160 foot long rope. If in high ice or rock fall area two 8mm to 8.8 mm ropes called "doubles" are used to reduce risk of rope cut and death. Odds of cutting two ropes of even thin diameter are very low.

All of my gear used above 14,000 feet in altitude is lightweight. Once I get above 16,000 feet ounces feel like pounds. I know where all the good street vendor repair shops with men that can sew two pieces of cloth thin as fishnet together where will still hold a hundred pounds up a couple more hills. It's not uncommon for me to pack gear that has blown straps or big rips when going to the Andes as in Huraz Peru and La Paz Bolivia along with other little towns from Eqiudor to Patagonia know where the market is and each markets best seamstress knowing their repair work will be better than any I get in the U.S. and I have a top flight local seamstress along with leather repair shop that can fix most boot issues and heavy sewing my seamstress machines won't handle.

I do not mind using lightweight gear that has been repaired properly a half dozen times or more. It's just what kind of gear is it and who is available to.repair it. If in the Rockies, Cascades, White Mountains of New Hampshire will buy newest and best piece of gear if blow a piece of soft gear out or break hard gear. But next trip the torn gear may have been repaired or packed to have repaired while acclimatizing. Not uncommon for us to land in Huraz which is at 14,000 feet after a twelve hour bus ride from sea level in Lima then spend our first couple days taking packs and clothing to local street vendors using sewing machines that are pedal powered to get all the team gear fixed for first trip into our acclimatization peaks.

Same with my Fight Light and other lightweight uniforms, load bearing gear and such. Every vest has a USGI issue adhesive patch kit. Have one lightweight multicam pattern pack that blew both straps. Had one fixed and other broke within a couple months. But my seamstress then knew where the weak spots were and added more material allowing heavier sewing including a bar tacking machine that basically welds cloth together the sewing is so durable. Can buy lightweight and then repair as needed often upgrading the attachment point of strap that blew and do same to strap on other side before it blows. A specific seam rips reinforce it when fixed and any other similar seams before they blow and can actually turn a lightweight piece of gear into a durable and lightweight piece of gear once the weak points are found in manner you use it and fix appropriately.

It's a fine line learning where you can cut weight and not have failures on the field then it's an art to figure out how to fix those weak areas to point gear is better than when new. My Right Light gear will probably hold up longer than I will at this point but I still use it when training on a heavy load day to look for the weak spots. That said, most current USGI gear is pretty decent except armor which should be remedied with the new system being phased in over 2020. IOTV is actually good stuff if pitch the USGI ceramic level 3 plates and replace with Tencate level 4 that weighs less than five pounds per plate. I test everything from underwear to armor and load bearing to be light and durable. Learn where to give up a little weight for durability and where to shave it for speed.

The best part is every year you get to try new gear and thus the kit is always getting lighter and stronger as old bodies begin to fail. I need every advantage I can get now when twenty years ago humping my pack a team pack and sick clients pack was just another beautiful day in the mountains.
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