Gear: Purpose, Use: Your Functional Gear System
I have posted about this before, most recently on the MVT Forum here: ‘Gear System: Philosophy, Set Up, Use, Fitness & Mindset.’ It does however need a follow up every now and again. Also, since I have made many of those posts, we have been hard at work with MVT Gear designing and making a line of equipment that supports this philosophy.
So let’s look at a basic summary of this system:
- Lite Battle Belt
- Chest Rig or Chest Rig / Plate Carrier Combo
- Emergency now: concealed carry handgun on belt, throw on Chest Rig to run the rifle.
- Day to day you are probably / should be concealed carrying a handgun. Thus you have options to run a handgun set up, either concealed or overt, on your pants belt. If you have an immediate emergency situation your go-to in this situation is your handgun.
- If you have time / access (due to location / planning) you then have the option of grabbing your rifle.
- When you grab your rifle, you need the ability to feed it rifle ammo, which is not contained on your everyday carry belt.
- Your option to carry rifle magazines should be some combination of chest rig (CR) / plate carrier (PC).
Below: MVT Responder Rig. Designed to be narrower and lower profile with 4 x mag pouches with kydex inserts, this rig is also a great option for women:
- Note that the Lite BB concept does not work well in an emergency every day scenario, simply due to the logistical factor of getting a Lite BB on over an already existing pants-belt EDC handgun load. Thus you skip the Lite BB in this situation, and go straight to the CR/PC rifle option.
- Don’t try and carry too much on your CR/PC / Lite BB combination: this is where the lite daypack concept comes in. More later.
- You want to avoid a situation where your gear concept involves a full battle belt, a full chest rig, and a plate carrier, all with big chunky straps, and with too much gear all up. The Lite Battle Belt is deliberately a fairly light piece of equipment, with the CR/PC being the main support item for your rifle. Sustainment and admin items then go in some kind of patrol pack, sized for the situation.
So what does this mean?
1) You are carrying concealed day to day, in current times. You cannot fit a Lite Battle Belt on over top of this. So If something comes up which needs gearing up for a rifle, you are going to go to your Chest Rig or Chest Rig / Plate Carrier.
2) If you are in a situation where you want to have rifle mags on you at all times, at least a basic load, then go to a Lite Battle Belt. This carries your handgun, some basic items , and probably a couple of rifle magazines. Keep it light and so that it does not interfere with sitting and day to day activities. Best to keep no pouches forward of the hips, or on the back of the belt. Personal preference.
Below: Example Lite battle Belt: this belt does not show any MVT Gear Product.
3) When wearing the Lite Battle Belt, you have the option of adding your Chest Rig or Plate carrier Chest Rig to fully feed your rifle. This is a versatile system that does not interfere with sitting, such as in a vehicle or waiting on standby as a quick reaction force, or sentry etc. It also allows you to easily carry any kind of ruck or backpack. If you don’t want the Lite Battle Belt, and just want to carry a basic pants-belt handgun load, it is up to you.
Below: MVT Responder Rig attached to a commercially available Plate Carrier using the PC Attachment Kit.
4) Gear that would have perhaps gone into the large rear pouches on a classic Battle Belt will now go into a Lite Patrol Pack / Day Pack. This is NOT a ruck and should be kept as light as practical. If you go out of sight of your home base. you throw this on. It contains water, basics, lunch, night vision etc.
There is a persistent piece of tomfoolery going around that a Chest Rig will keep you too high off the ground in the prone and also prevent you from reloading. Nope. In fact, it is easier to reload from the prone with a chest rig (not belly rig), especially from kydex mag inserts, than it is from hip mounted pouches. With a chest rig, the mags are right there. With hip mounted, you have to roll onto your side a bit and reach right back. BTDT. Of course, your Chest Rig should not be too deep, and should be of a fairly low profile, probably a single row of mags across your chest, to facilitate this.
Below: 3X Special Forces Rig:
Here at MVT Gear we have put our money where our mouth is and begun to design very well made gear with the intention of providing you with excellent gear that will allow you to bring these concepts to life. We currently have a line of Chest Rigs out, along with silent admin pouches that fit right on to the PALS webbing. We are following up with a Battle Belt Lite and various other pieces of gear to allow you to run this concept with well made, 100% Made in America, gear that is built to parachute rigger standards.
We have minimized velcro by using silent tuck tabs on our admin pouches, and we have gone to kydex inserts in our mag pouches. These allow for excellent mag retention with lighting fast reloads, and hold the mag pouches open to facilitate tactical reloads and return of mags to the mag pouches.
Below: Responder Rig, rear: kydex mag inserts, compass and map/notebook pouches:
Below: MVT Patrol Rig: 6 x mag layout
If you like to run a PC, or have the option of doing so, then you should consider the versatility of a Chest Rig rather than attaching your pouches directly to the PC. The Chest Rig allows you flexibility. You can wear it over the PC with the harness, or wear it without the PC in ‘recce mode.’ You can use the optional PC attachment kit straps to directly attach the Chest Rig to the PC. This would allow you to unclip and remove it while retaining the ballistic protection of your plates. Thus on more low key missions you may decide to forego the plates and just run the rig. Or you may do an infil with the plates in your ruck, wearing your Rig, and put the plates on in the ORP. The possibilities are endless with such flexibility.
It has been talked about that when coming to training you should wear really crappy surplus or Chicom gear until you can figure out what you need. Well, we have met that challenge and we can tell you that what you need is an MVT Chest Rig. This gear is designed to do what we do. It isn’t cheap Chicom crap, because it is handmade in the USA to parachute rigger standards. However, it is designed for exactly what you need. Buy once, cry once! We do gear in both 5.56 and .308 with kydex inserts. Also, our 5.56 mag pouches will take AK 5.56, as shown in this photo (AK right side):