Virginia Patriots: Chest Rig

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    • #133462
      Max
      Keymaster

        Ok, we have the other thread equipping the newbie which is intended to be a deep dive into short circuiting the gear struggle, and pointing towards good workable gear on the market.

        I’m going to start a series of threads on specific pieces of gear.

        First, chest rigs. Yes, MVT SOR is no longer available. Let’s post good recommendations for good chest rigs. I don’t want any Condor, or any crap that will fall apart on day 5 of RW2.

        So I’m not looking for budget, but decent workable kit. Bottom line, if a patriot buys a simple chest rig, they can throw on a backpack and be good to go.

        Carry on:

      • #133468
        Joe (G.W.N.S.)
        Moderator

          Crye Precision makes the AIRLITE CONVERTIBLE CHEST RIG.

          DESCRIPTION
          The AIRLITE CONVERTIBLE CHEST RIG is a lightweight multi-functional load carriage platform designed for maximum flexibility, weight-savings and packability. At just under one pound, the AIRLITE CONVERTIBLE CHEST RIG offers a variety of configuration options to suit varying operational needs. The front panel can attach to the included shoulder harness or to the front of a vest using the included quick attach hardware. Our patented AIRLITE construction sheds unnecessary weight and bulk while improving overall ventilation.

          I am a fan of the entire AirLite series by Crye. essentially an enhanced version of my BFG RACKminus I currently use. The one I examined was very impressive and Crye has a excellent reputation.

          Surprisingly Crye tends to have the best prices for this at $197.20, but look around.

        • #133473
          hellokitty
          Participant

            https://www.tacticaltailor.com/fightlightmav2piece.aspx

            https://www.tacticaltailor.com/fightlightxharness.aspx

            IMO
            The most comfortable chest rig is the TT Fight Light MAV with X Harness added. Most chest rigs has ALL the gear mags on your chest. It puts all weight on your shoulders and neck. The MAV spreads the weight around your torso making it more comfortable. I have worn this set up MANY times at MVT. By the way I run canteen pouches in back with two 32 oz bottles along with 8 mags, IFAK and spare items on this kit. 25-30 lbs. It is a bit of a hybrid. It is somewhere between a chest rig and a belt kit. If you go chest rig, this is the way to go IMO.

            HEAT 1(CTT) X 3
            HEAT 2 (CP) X1
            FOF X3
            OPFOR X2
            CLC X2
            RIFLEMAN

          • #133481
            riflemaniv
            Participant

              UW Gear. I have an older Minuteman and a Swampfox and several mag pouches. All of their gear is top notch.

              https://uwgearinc.com/

              • #133483
                Max
                Keymaster

                  What’s the production delay though? Can a Patriot get one online this week?

              • #133484
                riflemaniv
                Participant

                  I don’t know I haven’t ordered anything in a couple years. I think I may have waited 4 weeks last time. Here is another one I thought of:

                  https://atstacticalgear.com/m4-modular-chest-harness/

                  Remove the bungies and add kydex kywi inserts. It works well but not as clean as the SOR. Not sure about delivery times.

                • #133495
                  JohnnyMac
                  Participant

                    Tactical tailor MAV + esstac kywis + 2 GP pouches forms a good basis.

                    I haven’t gotten to handle one, but the esstac brush boar looks awesome

                  • #133514
                    Robert Henry
                    Participant

                      https://www.beezcombatsystems.com/Chest-Rigs_c5.htm

                      We have gotten a lot of use out of his AK chest rigs over the last decade and have not had a single failure point.

                      Can’t speak to their AR chest rigs, but he makes those also.

                      For “now” type applications regarding AR, finding a TAP at a surplus store might be the best choice. The last couple we bought off Ebay had the hardware to attach to a PC as well.

                      www.jrhenterprises.com

                      Lost my MVT class list- been here a time or two :)
                      Team Coyote. Rifleman Challenge- Vanguard

                    • #133513
                      JC
                      Participant

                        Velocity Systems UW CHEST RIG GEN IV

                        UW Chest Rig Gen IV

                        They have other excellent rigs.

                        Chest Rigs

                      • #133491
                        Brushpopper
                        Participant

                          Before getting the MVT SOR, I was going to get this mayflower rig and add the esstac rifle pouches to it:
                          https://www.optactical.com/mauwchrigqd1.html
                          https://www.optactical.com/es5dokytamag.html
                          https://www.optactical.com/es5trkymagpo.html
                          The tactical tailor fight light MAV was another option I was thinking about, also with the esstac rifle pouches:
                          https://www.optactical.com/tatamavchri.html

                          OP Tactical usually is very quick!

                        • #133532
                          dave37
                          Participant

                            If I couldn’t have an SOR, I would probably just grab a Blue Force Gear Ten Speed M4 rig. It’s not perfect, but it’s good enough, it’s light, the price is right, and you won’t have to spend a bunch of time setting it up. Throw a couple pouches on the sides for IFAK/radio/water bottle/tampons/tactical beanie baby and you’re good to go.

                            HEAT 1 2017
                            Intro to CQB 2017
                            Texas HEAT 2 2018
                            Operation TeaSinker 2019
                            Combat Leader Course 2019
                            Team Coyote
                            Team Rekkr
                            Team Cowbell

                          • #134048
                            JustARandomGuy
                            Participant

                              Here is another one I thought of:

                              https://atstacticalgear.com/m4-modular-chest-harness/

                              Remove the bungies and add kydex kywi inserts. It works well but not as clean as the SOR. Not sure about delivery times.

                              Can confirm that this works. Kywi’s fit well in the pockets, at least on the old-gen version I have. This is a plus over the Velocity Systems/Mayflower Gen IV and similar rigs, which, IIRC, have very tight mag pouches and can’t do this.

                              ATS seems to be reasonably good quality too, for a decent price point. I have owned multiple ATS chest rigs, and have been using a “slick” all-molle edition since 2013, and while it has not seen “heavy” use, aside from MVT/training classes, I see no major issues compared to other high-end brands I have also owned.

                              The only issues that I have found so far with the ATS rigs are;
                              1) The end user may need to shoe-goo a little velcro into the mag pouch interior, (OR cut down & notch the Kywi itself to interface with interior bungee like a Haley MP2) to ensure the Kywi insert stays IN the mag pouch, if you are going to run sans-bungee tabs.
                              2) I had a couple ATS All-MOLLE/slick rigs that had unevenly sewn webbing. As with all gear, check them over before adding anything. One rig the uneven webbing was serious enough to impede pouch mounting- I contacted ATS,sent pictures, and they replaced it, no questions asked.
                              3) No swift clip compatibility (unless they buy the Slimline II)

                              HOWEVER, if the end user doesn’t have a need for swift-clip compatibility, and they are on a budget, the M4 Modular is usually the chest rig I steer 1st time chest rig buyers at, since they’re saving a little money right off the bat not having to buy mag pouches right away, and with the H-harness it still works perfectly fine as a throw-over rig ICW a slick PC.
                              Blueforce Ten-Speeds are pretty great on the front of this rig for mag plus-up, although I’m not thrilled with their long-term durability, but… that’s just my opinion.

                              Further, if wearing it “loaded up” standalone, the end user can either swap the basic webbing straps for ATS’s “Modular Padded Harness” OR the SKD Pig Brig Mk1 or Mk2 shoulder pads can be used over the basic webbing straps. I have used the MK1 pads extensively with the basic webbing, as well as switched recently to the ATS padded harness. Both work well. I feel like the ATS padded harness spreads the weight better, but the MK1 pads are cheaper by $7, and can be rapidly removed on the fly if you want to immediately switch the rig to “throw-over” mode for some reason, so…whatever. End user choice.

                              https://atstacticalgear.com/modular-padded-h-harness/
                              https://www.skdtac.com/PIG-BRIG-Shoulder-Pad-Set-p/pig.513.htm
                              https://www.skdtac.com/PIG-BRIG-Mk2-Shoulder-Pad-Set-p/pig.704.htm

                              Also a reminder that SKD also sells 10-packs of Kywi inserts, so if anyone has a buddy and you’re gonna buy the same rig…
                              https://www.skdtac.com/Esstac-556-KYWI-Kydex-Wedge-Insert-10-Pack-Dea-p/ess.137.htm

                            • #134097
                              Civilianresponder
                              Participant

                                It’s easy enough to make the kydex inserts. All you need is an oven or a heat gun. $10 worth of kydex will make 8 inserts.

                              • #134100
                                wheelsee
                                Participant

                                  It’s easy enough to make the kydex inserts. All you need is an oven or a heat gun. $10 worth of kydex will make 8 inserts.

                                  https://www.ar15.com/forums/armory/DIY_Kydex_Mag_Pouch_Inserts/10-438180/

                                  Caveat – NOT endorsing the website but it came up on my search for DIY Kydex magazine inserts

                                  • This reply was modified 7 months, 1 week ago by wheelsee. Reason: clarification
                                • #134216
                                  DiznNC
                                  Participant

                                    I would also endorse UW Gear as being some of the best made kit on the market, however, if lead times are critical, then try OP Tac as he is a stocking dealer. This is a good point for those in other states; if you want a good chest rig from UW Gear, order it now.

                                    If in VA, then yeah, you have to look at what’s out there right now, so again at Op Tac you might look at the Mayflower or Spiritus rigs.

                                    Surplus, nothing wrong with the Jarhead or Doggie rigs; I’d drop Kywi inserts in there and drive on.

                                    I would also add that compatibility with BA is a requirement for many, so I would be looking for a rig that would click into your PC. The micro chest rigs are particularly well suited to this.

                                    • #134219
                                      Max
                                      Keymaster

                                        I would disagree with Diz on one thing. Spiritus. I have had dealings with these guys, and they are c*nts without honor. Don’t fight for Liberty wearing their shit.

                                    • #134229
                                      JohnnyMac
                                      Participant

                                        I’ve had a report of a Spiritus chest rig failing quickly. Maybe a lemon, but something to consider.

                                        • This reply was modified 7 months, 1 week ago by JohnnyMac.
                                      • #134247
                                        JustARandomGuy
                                        Participant

                                          It’s easy enough to make the kydex inserts. All you need is an oven or a heat gun. $10 worth of kydex will make 8 inserts.

                                          A valid point.
                                          Although, I have messed around with kydex some (DIY holster attempts) and it does seem to take a little more effort than someone who has never played with it before may think.
                                          Just an an FYI for any new folks dropping by that might think they’re going to grab a sheet of kydex and a heat gun and bang out a bunch of perfect inserts in an afternoon… Spend some time and extra kydex experimenting first.

                                          I would disagree with Diz on one thing. Spiritus. I have had dealings with these guys, and they are c*nts without honor. Don’t fight for Liberty wearing their shit.

                                          Ouch.
                                          I used to be part of a FB group where they practically got their start (or at least, a contributing reason for their rapid rise in publicity). The owner always seemed like a stand-up guy, and a straight shooter.
                                          This is unfortunate to hear.

                                          I’ve had a report of a Spiritus chest rig failing quickly. Maybe a lemon, but something to consider.

                                          I mean, to be fair… I’ve heard the same thing recently about some of the Haley rigs too, so… :unsure:

                                          • This reply was modified 7 months, 1 week ago by JustARandomGuy. Reason: Amazing typing skills
                                        • #134251
                                          Joe (G.W.N.S.)
                                          Moderator

                                            I mean, to be fair… I’ve heard the same thing recently about some of the Haley rigs too, so…

                                            Haley who? B-)

                                            Sorry couldn’t resist.

                                          • #134258
                                            hellokitty
                                            Participant

                                              In case anyone interested in the Tactical Tailor MAV, I am posting pic of mine.
                                              Attached are
                                              4 EMDOM AK/M4 double mag pouches
                                              2 Tactical Tailor canteen pouches
                                              2 TT general pouch zip
                                              1 TT smoke pouch

                                              The EMDOM pouches can hold 2 AK mags or 3 M4 mags (magpuls are tight)

                                              • This reply was modified 7 months, 1 week ago by hellokitty.
                                              Attachments:
                                              You must be logged in to view attached files.

                                              HEAT 1(CTT) X 3
                                              HEAT 2 (CP) X1
                                              FOF X3
                                              OPFOR X2
                                              CLC X2
                                              RIFLEMAN

                                            • #134337
                                              DiznNC
                                              Participant

                                                Good updates gents. I did not know of issues with Spiritus and Haley. Plan accordingly.

                                              • #134378
                                                rumpumtn
                                                Participant

                                                  I have a Haley chest rig with the kydex inserts and flat pack and I’ve been really happy with it. No signs of defects. Pack is a good size as a small day pack. Added a 3 L water bladder. The only issue is that it doesn’t have webbing to attach additional pouches (except the pack to attach to plate carrier if desired). But as I understand, it keeps it lightweight and causes you to be creative and stick with the “fight light” concept. Also can easily clip onto a plate carrier front and stick because the entire rear is velcro. I have a Blue Force gear admin pouch velcro’d into the back.

                                                  Might could get those items shipped quickly too.

                                                • #134379
                                                  R Young
                                                  Participant

                                                    Dammit. I was just getting ready to buy a rig from them. Good timing on the head’s up, thanks.

                                                    “I would disagree with Diz on one thing. Spiritus. I have had dealings with these guys, and they are c*nts without honor. Don’t fight for Liberty wearing their shit.”

                                                    • This reply was modified 7 months, 1 week ago by R Young.
                                                  • #134455
                                                    DiznNC
                                                    Participant

                                                      Yeah its a shame but there are many out there who are very good at marketing but suck at what they actually are making. QC varies greatly from production runs. Some things can be corrected, with the time and money, but in this case, you need something that works, right now.

                                                      So yeah, all bullshit aside, you need quality vendors, with product in stock, ready to ship. And a decent price couldn’t hurt. My first choice would be OpTactical because they are a stocking dealer, with Velocity/Mayflower, UW Gear, TT, Crye, etc. All good choices, ready to go.

                                                      So far, the shit list here would include Spiritus, Haley S, Condor, and any Chinese/Korean airsoft. Jury still out on 5.11, Helikon, Mil-Tec, etc. Some might be good, but no time to verify.

                                                    • #134479
                                                      Spencer
                                                      Participant

                                                        Thanks for all the valuable and actionable information gents. I just saw on the OpTactical site that there is a 25% off sale on all Arc’Teryx gear. Looks like a great site with a wide range of necessary gear.

                                                        DCH 10/2019
                                                        H.E.A.T. 1 12/2019

                                                      • #134569
                                                        JustARandomGuy
                                                        Participant

                                                          Let me just clarify my comment on the Haley stuff before I start an internet panic… haha
                                                          Do not take that to mean ALL HS stuff since forever is no-go.
                                                          I have owned several items from them in the past; so have many others. I have not experienced failures, nor did the items I own/ed seem poorly constructed.

                                                          I made that comment because it was an issue brought up in a RECENT discussion, so I am thinking perhaps either a bad run of product got out (kind of like what happened to Tyr Tactical several years back) OR their new stuff is starting to cut corners. I am of course not privy to the internal goings-on of the company.

                                                          Now, if someone comes over here with a bunch of down-range experience and says they’ve always sucked, then I am all ears.

                                                          But like I said above- as with any gear, check it out before use, no matter how good a rep it has.
                                                          I’ve gotten a Daniel Defense rifle with a warped barrel, a Crye AVS with plate bags that were sewn together internally, Tyr pouches with offset webbing MOLLE straps and loose stitching, LBT plate carrier with poor plate bag stitching, HSGI items with poor workmanship, ATS items with wild sewing, etc, etc.
                                                          First Spear and Velocity Systems/Mayflower are the only ones so far I’ve never had an issue with, and yet I’m sure out there is *someone* who has.
                                                          Anyway, I’m rambling, but my point is, you go through enough equipment, and you’ll see things fail. It happens, even to the best. It is mass-produced gear after all.

                                                          As far as dealers, like Diz said, OP-tac and also SKD Tac are both GTG, and don’t sell junk.
                                                          They also have a wide selection of other equipment, not just soft tactical gear.

                                                        • #135543
                                                          trailman
                                                          Participant

                                                            I’ll throw this one out there. Max asked for a workable affordable chest rig that can be ordered fairly quick. A lot of the answers here are high speed low drag gear, getting down into custom kydex inserts etc etc. a rabbit hole and maybe not viable to quickly outfit a group of new folks.

                                                            I came across this rig
                                                            https://www.sportsmansguide.com/product/index/us-municipal-surplus-molle-chest-rig-new?a=2204993

                                                            Looks like police surplus, plenty of pouches and looks like it will take a plate although I can’t see that from the diagram. There are plenty of discount codes out there too.

                                                          • #135548
                                                            DiznNC
                                                            Participant

                                                              Well, it looks like a good deal, however, it is made by Voodoo Tactical, which is essentially airsoft gear. Saying it’s surplus is misleading; surplus to who? A LE-issued rig in MC black, probably never gonna happen. I’m gonna hafta call bullshit on this one, becuz, no agency I’ve ever seen runs MC black (if that’s what it is), and 79 bucks is airsoft pricing.

                                                              While true most every mfg has had a turd or two slip out of the factory, the vendors listed are probably the least likely. I’d include HS on this, but frankly they seem marketed to all the fan boys out there, vs real rifleman. You see their stuff being marketed by all the “experts” on youtube, fancy print ads, and so forth; I don’t know of any real teams buying them. On the other hand, Velocity/Mayflower, TT, UWG, all been used extensively down range.

                                                            • #135614
                                                              JustARandomGuy
                                                              Participant

                                                                ..I’d include HS on this, but frankly they seem marketed to all the fan boys out there, vs real rifleman…

                                                                Who? You mean High Speed Gear?
                                                                I mean, yeah they are kind of “everywhere”, they do a good job of promoting themselves, what can you say? haha

                                                                That being said, while I have heard of some occasional issues, and seen a couple myself, and while they are hardly my favorite gear company (bulky, heavy, a little overpriced), I DO still have some of their stuff, and it is workable. I can’t think of any reason not to use it IF it is either your only choice, or does something specific no-one else does, for the end user. And you can often find quite a lot of the basic rifle/pistol tacos on the lightly-used market.

                                                                …Max asked for a workable affordable chest rig that can be ordered fairly quick. A lot of the answers here are high speed low drag gear… maybe not viable to quickly outfit a group of new folks…

                                                                Without dragging this too off-topic, there is no real good way to QUICKLY outfit a GROUP on short notice, unless you’re a gov/le unit. Even with stocking vendors/manufacturers like the above recommended, the end users are still at the mercy of how many they happen to have in stock.
                                                                Or you could attempt to place a larger order direct with the manufacturer, BUT then you are still at the mercy of A)IF they will even do that for non-gov persons and B) how fast they can produce and ship your order.
                                                                Best bet right now is stocking vendors (add Entry Gear to the list), stocking manufacturers that don’t have a ghastly MSRP markup, scouring used-sale sites, and Ebay, although the only things you will likely find large quantities of items on Ebay are pouches.
                                                                However, IF the end users are willing to use slightly older/slightly used equipment that’s not quite as ‘high-speed’, you can find large lot-quantities of Eagle Industries SAW, Double/quad M4, and 9mm Pistol Molle pouches.
                                                                So if the end user group already had acquired a large number of Molle platforms, and were just lacking pouches, this could be an option.
                                                                However, the quantity and quality of available deals on surplus gear has become less in recent years. :unsure:

                                                              • #135619
                                                                JustARandomGuy
                                                                Participant

                                                                  As far as the Voodoo chest rig in question…they want $71 bucks for that?
                                                                  Like, if I’m trying to save a buck, I’d just as soon take a risk and spend $20 on a chi-com surplus rig and hack it to work with an AR loadout. The 3-rifle-pouch version is ON that same website for $18, and some of the 5-mag ones are still out there, IIRC, for around the same price. Hell, I could buy TWO and still have 30 bucks left over, and if the first one shits the bed I’ll have a spare.
                                                                  And I know I can trust a surplus chic-om rig at least as much as Voodoo/etc. :unsure:

                                                                  Seriously, if people are THAT desperate, Reid Henrichs (yeah, yeah…) had a vid on this about 4 years ago.

                                                                • #135620
                                                                  JustARandomGuy
                                                                  Participant

                                                                    Let’s see if this will work;

                                                                    youtube[DOT]com/watch?v=dZC2wD5v4uE

                                                                  • #135674
                                                                    Jim D.
                                                                    Participant

                                                                      Grey Ghost gear has their split front Assault Chest Rig on clearance for $21 plus shipping
                                                                      Assault Chest Rig – Split Front

                                                                    • #135675
                                                                      trailman
                                                                      Participant

                                                                        MFG Sorry for commenting. All of you are sending gear to Max’s training days in culpeper right?

                                                                      • #135766
                                                                        JustARandomGuy
                                                                        Participant

                                                                          Trailman, apologies if anything seemed directed *at* you, definitely was not the intent, read as directed at item.

                                                                        • #150340
                                                                          ls11
                                                                          Participant

                                                                            I’m looking at one of these two as a low profile light weight rig. I’m leaning toward the one with pouches and a medical insert.

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                                                                          • #150360
                                                                            DiznNC
                                                                            Participant

                                                                              What I have found over the years, that a lot of these things are a moving target. You might find a rifle, a chest rig, a boot that works really well for you, but by the time you recommend it to others, their QC goes straight to shit.

                                                                              I think updates like this on forums are invaluable to get a current snap-shot of what’s what.

                                                                              I would submit that Helikon-Tex has come a long way. They have a new micro chest rig set up that has had very good initial reports. Their supply was fairly good until COVID fucked up shipping, including from eastern Europe. I would say that IF time allows, and IF the transportation system get get going again, then this might be a viable option. I looked at it at the last SHOT Show and was impressed.

                                                                              I know weeks ago we were talking in terms of getting weapons and equipment RIGHT NOW, because the VA boog looked like it was ready to kick off. Then it was OBE to Covid, and then national civil unrest. Up next, the national election. So yeah, it would appear that you will probably have time to order something that is not in stock right now. So with enough weasel words in that sentence, I’m saying I am ordering some things like this and risking the wait. YMMV.

                                                                              If you want to stay domestic, and I get that, may I again suggest UWGear for really good custom chest rigs, in many different configs. Yes there is a wait, but sometimes you just need to get on the wait list for some things, IMHO. This used to be SOP when the community was a lot smaller than it is today. Now events have taken us back to those days.

                                                                              These are just some suggestions, for your consideration. Getting ready right now, is a viable COA; but so is a back up plan to get better kit as it becomes available. As a guy who has been dabbling in these things for a few decades, we thought the SHTF was going to happen lots of times, but here we still are. That’s not to say it won’t happen tomorrow, but my own personal estimate of the sit is that we still have some time. Of course YMMV.

                                                                              HT

                                                                            • #150369
                                                                              JustARandomGuy
                                                                              Participant

                                                                                I’m looking at one of these two as a low profile light weight rig. I’m leaning toward the one with pouches and a medical insert.

                                                                                If you get the one with pouches sewn on, it’s never going to be ‘low profile’… ;-)

                                                                                Get the one without the pouches; add what you need later. This way you can tailor it to your needs. You can add radio pouches or med/GP pouches that do exactly what you want, and then you can take them off if you need a ‘slicker’ setup.

                                                                                I have one of these exact rigs (and two of ATS’s all-molle versions of same). As I mentioned earlier in this thread, just check the webbing for straightness before you call it good.

                                                                              • #150359
                                                                                michaeltqs
                                                                                Participant

                                                                                  I just did a breakdown of web gear on my page if anyone is interested in it.

                                                                                  But my reasons for posting here is a store in Finland https://www.varusteleka.com/en There is shit there you never knew you needed.

                                                                                  For $500 you can outfit a rifle squad with surplus Brit, US, German or whomever floats your boat and unlike most places in europe the shipping is very reasonable.

                                                                                  I have no dog in this fight but all the gear I show as mine on my site comes from pieces I bought from https://www.varusteleka.com/en. And they ship fast

                                                                                  What web gear should I buy for an emergency?

                                                                                • #150380
                                                                                  Civilianresponder
                                                                                  Participant

                                                                                    Whats wrong with Tactical Tailor? Readily available and you can have a chest rig for about $50bon ebay.

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