Showing posts with label Archer Garrett. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Archer Garrett. Show all posts

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Fighting Load Contest #19 by John Dozier

Today I am proud to bring Entry #18 of our Fighting Load Contest by Crankjob.

We'll be talking chest rigs and battle belts as well as guns and get home bags/ assault packs. Get yours together to win some great prizes including:
1st: Blackhawk 3 day Assault Pack ($90) AND a $50 gift certificate from LuckyGunner.com ($50 value) plus 2 copies of The Reluctant Partisan by John Mosby.
2nd: HERC stove from Titan Ready Water ($169 value) plus The Reluctant Partisan by John Mosby.
Note: Prizes 1 and 2 are really closely matched. As such the overall winner can pick the Lucky Gunner stuff OR the HERC. 2nd place gets what is left. 2 books will go to #1 and 1 book to #2.
3rd Place: 3 Sport Berkey Water Bottles donated by LPC Survival ($69 value)
4th Place:  A Lifestraw donated by Camping Survival ($20 value)
5th Place: A pair of Gyver Gear survival tin's
6th Place: The Western Front (hardcopy) or 3x e books by Archer Garrett.
Wildcard: This one goes to whoever I want to give it to for whatever reason I feel like. It will be a grab bag donated by yours truly. The exact makeup is TBD depending on what I have lying around  and may include books, gear, medical stuff or even a couple silver dimes. ($30+  value).
For a good example of a post reference my EDC Contest entry. Those should give you a good idea what type of thing I'm looking for. I will probably do a full fighting load post some time before the contest is over.

The contest is closed and this is the second to last entry I am tracking. If you sent one in and have not seen it please get with me ASAP.  Voting will start later week. It will decide the winner's who get the prizes. Onto the Entry.....

 

 

In the attached image you will see my fighting load. It is a work in progress.
Starting with the weapons: my AR15 is a cmmg lower with a Palmetto State mid-length upper. For optics I have an Aimpoint comp m2 mounted with a LaRue QD mount, and mounted on the left side of the rifle I have a flashlight for illumination. My Coldsteel SRK and Gerber multi-tool I carry on my belt. My glock 17 is mounted on my plate carrier, but I am not sold on it staying there.
The plate carrier is Condor and holds front and back AR500 steel armor. These are heavy but durable and very affordable. Coupled with the hard armor is a level 2 soft armor wrap-around vest.
The chest rig is a Blackhawk low profile model, with 6 rifle mags, 2 pistol mags, and a small IFAK. I plan on adding additional mag pouches, a radio pouch, and improving the IFAK when possible.
This kit is very minimalist, and I am not including information on my clothing or pack. I chose to make this kit very modular, and easier to conceal if necessary. I can conceal both sets of armor under a fleece jacket or softshell easily. I am not sure about the weight, but I would estimate the armor, ammo, and plate carrier/chest rig combined are under 40 lbs easily. And before anyone asks, yes I exercise regularly, including lifting weights and hiking with 30-50 lb packs. I would also recommend running hills and a good diet for anyone looking for PT advice.
I would appreciate any constructive feedback, thank you.
Best regards,
John Dozer

 Ryan here: As always thanks for playing. Let's see. Like the rifle, everything you need and no silly stuff bolted on. Good call not going cheap on the optic. Personally I'd rather run iron's for an extra couple months and get something reliable than buy a $100 red dot that is sure to fail in some way or another. Yeah I am generally not a huge fan of PC mounted handguns though they do have a place. I'd want a small concealment belt type holster somewhere in there to give a low profile option. Also personally I would look at the soft armor and vest more as a this or that than a both option but that is just me. Otherwise not a lot to add.

Thoughts?

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Last Call For Fighting Load Contest Entries

 Our Fighting Load Contest is wrapping up fast. Between field time and technical issues it went on longer than planned but now we are closing it out. This is my last call for alibi posts that were sent but have for whatever reason not been published. If you have not seen it on the blog I am not tracking it.

Also given that I was not exactly timely in this it isn't a big deal if you for whatever reason did not previously submit an entry and now want to do so. If you submit an entry between now and Friday at noon I will publish them. So if you wanted to play and didn't get to it here is a chance to do so. Any posts I get will be published rapid fire. Voting will start early next week.

To recap here are the prizes and details.

1st: Blackhawk 3 day Assault Pack ($90) AND a $50 gift certificate from LuckyGunner.com ($50 value) plus 2 copies of The Reluctant Partisan by John Mosby.
2nd: HERC stove from Titan Ready Water ($169 value) plus The Reluctant Partisan by John Mosby.
Note: Prizes 1 and 2 are really closely matched. As such the overall winner can pick the Lucky Gunner stuff OR the HERC. 2nd place gets what is left. 2 books will go to #1 and 1 book to #2.
3rd Place: 3 Sport Berkey Water Bottles donated by LPC Survival ($69 value)
4th Place:  A Lifestraw donated by Camping Survival ($20 value)
5th Place: A pair of Gyver Gear survival tin's
6th Place: The Western Front (hardcopy) or 3x e books by Archer Garrett.

Wildcard: This one goes to whoever I want to give it to for whatever reason I feel like. It will be a grab bag donated by yours truly. The exact makeup is TBD depending on what I have lying around  and may include books, gear, medical stuff or even a couple silver dimes. ($30+  value).

For a good example of a post reference my EDC Contest entry or Max's  Battle Belt discussion. Those should give you a good idea what type of thing I'm looking for. I will probably do a full fighting load post some time.

 Voting will start after the last entry is shown on the blog. Voting will run for about a week and will decide the winner's who get the prizes.

Disclaimer: As far as this contest is concerned I am a totalitarian dictator albeit a benevolent one. I reserve the right to remove, add or change prizes, edit entries, reject entries, scrap the results of voting or otherwise do whatever I want at any time with no advance notice. I will also retain rights to use all entries on the blog or in other way's. While I'm a reasonable guy and will listen to your concerns there is no appeals or arbitration process. Whatever I say goes so if you don't like it then don't play.

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Fighting Load Contest Entry #18 by Crankjob


Today I am proud to bring Entry #18 of our Fighting Load Contest by Crankjob.

We'll be talking chest rigs and battle belts as well as guns and get home bags/ assault packs. Get yours together to win some great prizes including:
1st: Blackhawk 3 day Assault Pack ($90) AND a $50 gift certificate from LuckyGunner.com ($50 value) plus 2 copies of The Reluctant Partisan by John Mosby.
2nd: HERC stove from Titan Ready Water ($169 value) plus The Reluctant Partisan by John Mosby.
Note: Prizes 1 and 2 are really closely matched. As such the overall winner can pick the Lucky Gunner stuff OR the HERC. 2nd place gets what is left. 2 books will go to #1 and 1 book to #2.
3rd Place: 3 Sport Berkey Water Bottles donated by LPC Survival ($69 value)
4th Place:  A Lifestraw donated by Camping Survival ($20 value)
5th Place: A pair of Gyver Gear survival tin's
6th Place: The Western Front (hardcopy) or 3x e books by Archer Garrett.
Wildcard: This one goes to whoever I want to give it to for whatever reason I feel like. It will be a grab bag donated by yours truly. The exact makeup is TBD depending on what I have lying around  and may include books, gear, medical stuff or even a couple silver dimes. ($30+  value).
For a good example of a post reference my EDC Contest entry. Those should give you a good idea what type of thing I'm looking for. I will probably do a full fighting load post some time before the contest is over.


The contest is closed and this is the last entry I am tracking. If you sent one in and have not seen it please get with me ASAP.  Voting will start soon and run for about a week. It will decide the winner's who get the prizes. Onto the Entry.....


Hello Sir,
Here's my entry, also included some pics of the kit being worn, in case that helps.
So what we have here is a kit that is designed to be versatile, kinda cheap, kinda lightweight, legal in most states, and in 3 common calibers: 30-06, 12 gauge, and .357 magnum.

Here's the rundown:
Rifle- a used Savage 110 in 30-06 caliber with a Nikon 3-9x scope w/ flip up lens covers, leather Ching sling, and cheap-o bipod.  I made the cheek rest with closed cell foam, duct tape, and camo-wrap.  I've managed to put a couple sub-MOA groups onto paper with this setup, and it cost less than $400 for the whole shebang.  The 30-06 has alot of bullet drop, but carries enough energy to be dangerous out as far as 900 meters.  A BDC reticle is important to get the most out of this cartridge, and carry a ballistic table/BDC chart for your scope/cartridge combo!

Shotgun- a Mossberg 590 Mariner w/ choate Mark IV stock.  The safety location is kind of annoying now, but I treat it sorta like an AK safety (i keep my thumb wrapped around the pistol grip, and use my index finger or whole hand to flick the safety button forward and back).  There is a Streamlight Microstream AAA flashlight duct-taped to the magazine tube.  It's not especially bright, but it's better than nothing.  I used some closed cell foam as a shock absorber/ spacer and it's been working well for more than 100 rounds.

Sidearm- a Ruger LCR in .357 magnum, with Crimson trace laser grip.  (I also keep an empty pocket holster in my pocket in case I gotta ditch the battle belt).

Ancillary gear:
Water- behind the rifle is a mil-surplus Camelbak with 96 ounces of water

Backpack-  a Kelty, some discontinued model.  Inside I keep extra ammo, a cook pot, home-made MRE of 4,000 calories, along with basic supplies such as lighter, cordage, AAA batteries, wool socks, gloves, fleece hat, headlamp, tarp, extra clothing, sunblock, a whistle, binoculars, laser rangefinder, etc., while leaving room so I can stow the clothes I'm wearing.  it's just a little bit of the basics to keep me going.

Ear pro-  Howard Leight Impact Sport

Battle Belt- A Blackhawk molle belt. From left to right: shotshell pouch w/ buckshot, shotshell pouch w/ slugs, 5.11 6x6 pouch containing IFAK with zip-ties and a good quality glow stick attached externally, Camelbak pouch containing a metal nalgene style bottle, Glock field knife, nylon flap holster and a nylon shell pouch containing speed strips.


What I like: The guns are all California/ Massachusetts/ whatever-dumb-state legal, and use common ammunition. 30-06 and 12 gauge slugs can potentially penetrate many types of cover, body armor, and engine blocks. If needed the rifle and shell-belt can be ditched or handed off to a buddy and I'm still pretty well armed.



The entire rig, with ammo, 1 gal of water, food, clothes, boots, EVERYTHING weighs under 50 lbs, and the weight is spread out evenly. I could conceivably breach into a building with the 12 gauge, set up a fire position for the bolt gun, and still have a CQB weapon. It doesn't interfere with climbing, hiking, or going prone at all, and I can access all the equipment pretty easily.


What I don't like: Good at distance, good up close, not so good from 100-300 meters.
Limited capacity; If I shot all 3 guns dry It would be only 18 rounds, then I need to reload (and they all reload slowly) . The shotgun is slow to deploy from the scabbard, I'd have to draw my little 5-shot sidearm for a surprise close-encounterLimited suppressive-fire capability.
A little bit sloppy with all the straps and buckles, and the shotgun muzzle bumps around when I'm in tight spaces.

So that's my rig as of today, I should say that it takes about 15 minutes to go from my skivvies to full gear.  This gear setup is of course not as kick-ass as having an AR, but I'm sure many readers are in a similar situation, with a couple hunting weapons and looking for ways to integrate them.
Also, I keep all of the elastic shell-holders empty so they don't stretch out, with the shells kept in ziploc bags nearby and all the web gear is in one duffel together.   For the middle-of-night quick access, I have the shotgun locked in a wall-mount and a belt of shells hanging next to it.

Thanks Ryan, and good luck to the other contestants!

- Crankjob



 Ryan here: As always thanks for playing. I have a question and a thought
1) You mentioned legality in anti gun states. That can be a concern for folks who live in or near such areas. It lost me when you mention California AND Massachussets, given that they are well pretty far apart. Do you find yourself traveling in/ through anti gun states frequently?

2) Not entirely sure how I feel about the LCR (actually I am entirely ambivalent about it but I digress) or a comparable J framed type revolver in this role. On one hand the system could certainly support and arguably benefit from a larger hnadgun. On the other hand if an '06 and a shotgun won't solve it the negligible difference between a mid sized and small handgun probably won't. Also the smaller handgun would be handy for being discrete like going into a gas station or something, especially if CCW is not exactly legal in the area.

Edited to include 3) Generally speaking when I see a 2nd long gun as part of a load out it is for a specific purpose on an as needed type basis. Example a sniper would carry his sniper rifle and an M4 for personal protection, though the trend towards semi auto bolt guns on the AR platform is making that unnecessary. A breacher carrying a pistol grip 12 gauge is another example. However as a general rule a 2nd long gun is probably ovverkill for a man portable kit. 

Thoughts?

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Fighting Load Contest Entry #17 by Chris

Today I am proud to bring Entry #17 of our Fighting Load Contest by Chris formerly of AK.

We'll be talking chest rigs and battle belts as well as guns and get home bags/ assault packs. Get yours together to win some great prizes including:
1st: Blackhawk 3 day Assault Pack ($90) AND a $50 gift certificate from LuckyGunner.com ($50 value) plus 2 copies of The Reluctant Partisan by John Mosby.
2nd: HERC stove from Titan Ready Water ($169 value) plus The Reluctant Partisan by John Mosby.
Note: Prizes 1 and 2 are really closely matched. As such the overall winner can pick the Lucky Gunner stuff OR the HERC. 2nd place gets what is left. 2 books will go to #1 and 1 book to #2.
3rd Place: 3 Sport Berkey Water Bottles donated by LPC Survival ($69 value)
4th Place:  A Lifestraw donated by Camping Survival ($20 value)
5th Place: A pair of Gyver Gear survival tin's
6th Place: The Western Front (hardcopy) or 3x e books by Archer Garrett.
Wildcard: This one goes to whoever I want to give it to for whatever reason I feel like. It will be a grab bag donated by yours truly. The exact makeup is TBD depending on what I have lying around  and may include books, gear, medical stuff or even a couple silver dimes. ($30+  value).
For a good example of a post reference my EDC Contest entry. Those should give you a good idea what type of thing I'm looking for. I will probably do a full fighting load post some time before the contest is over.

The contest is closed but we still have a few more posts to show due to my technological issues and some field time. Voting will start after the last entry is shown on the blog. Voting will run for about a week and will decide the winner's who get the prizes. Onto the Entry.....

I am currently traveling, so I could not share my primary rig.  However, I did want to share the rig I keep in the trunk of the car.  It was designed to be inexpensive so I can have several copies:  I have a similar set of gear prepositioned in each car, at the office, and so on.  I think it could also serve as a suitable setup to leave in a cache or similar application.

NOT PICTURED:  CHANGE OF CLOTHES
I have a gym bag with an old pair of boots, good socks, a base layer, and cargo pants with each rig.  The idea of that is that if I get stranded somewhere and I am wearing impractical clothing I can immediately change into something more suitable. If I have to move on foot I don't want to be stuck with shorts and sandals.  So the assumption is for the rest of this gear that I'll have decent clothes on.

ARMOR (<$140)
Pictured is a police surplus carrier I got for ten bucks or so off EBAY and steel level 3 plates from TheTargetMan which have been RhinoLined to mitigate spall and frag.  The plates were $125 shipped.

I have ceramic plates at home, but the steel plates are ideal for the trunk/cache application.  They are inexpensive, temperature insensitive, and not fragile at all.  You can bang them around in the trunk of the car with no risk of cracks or damage.  I also use them for PT; they work great to do some basic cross-fit type workouts in a hotel room.  For example, throw on the plate carrier and do squats, lunges, push-ups, etc.

On the downside, you need to be aware of frag/spall issues with steel; the RhinoLiner seems to help a lot, but the testing that has been done is not full-up lab vetted.  Additionally, steel is generally only level 3 and can have issues with AP ammo or 5.56 green tip at close ranges/high velocities.

Not every car and cache has a set of steel plates, mainly due to expense.  The rigs in climate controlled environments just have a level 2 surplus soft vest with expired panels and a stab level 2 panel, which can be had very inexpensively if you buy in bulk.  I put together a few soft vest setups for about forty bucks each.  The expired panels are a bit questionable, and I have nice unexpired level 3A panels at home and for work, but for a cache I feel comfortable enough with an expired level 2 vest...  It certainly is better than nothing!
 
 
CHEST RIG ($20 + mags & ammo)
Pictured is a Type 56 Chinese chest rig.  They go for ten bucks or so.  Mine has three AK magazines in the main pockets.  The smaller pockets have an NPA, oral rehydration salts, gauze/bandage, an Israeli bandage, and a tourniquet.  My nice rig has CATs, and I usually carry a CAT in my level 1 gear, and these cache/travel rigs make use of the less expensive TK4; I bought a bunch in bulk and got them for ~$5 each.  I had the rest of the medical stuff laying around.

One small pocket is empty.  I usually use it for a monocular, small radio, flashlight, or cell phone once I get out to the field.  I guess I could preposition a ten dollar TracFone with each chest rig but haven't bothered to do so.

CANTEEN CARRIER (<$15)
The canteens cost me about ten bucks each.  They hold 2 liters and have the shoulder strap.  I've added some extra gear to each canteen carrier:  three glow sticks, a whistle, matches, and water purification tablets.

BACKPACK (~$25)
I got a set of East German field packs for about two dollars each, surplus.  I've stuffed them with all sorts of useful stuff:

Map: Copies of parts of USGS topo map.
Compass: I tossed in some coghlan brand cheapies I found at a big box store.  Is it a great compass? No. Will it find north? Probably. Cost: $2.
Sunglasses and Sunscreen: I picked up bottles of SPF 50 in travel size for <$1 each. Amazon has tinted safety glasses (Pyramex Alair Safety Eyewear) for $2.50 with free shipping. Cost: $3.50.
Extra Clothing: I went through the closet and pulled out some old clothes. Each ruck has two pairs of boot socks, two pairs of gym socks, and two undershirts/tshirts. The bad thing is that most of this gear is cotton. Cotton is bad. The good thing is that it was free, because I needed to clear the old stuff out of my closets anyways. I would also like to add some underoos in there but just cleared out the dresser, so those will have to wait. I threw in a ball cap for each bag too -- I have a bunch laying around. Cost: Free.
 
Bandanas: I also tossed in two orange bandanas (Bandanas by the Dozen (12 units per pack, 100% cotton) for about $1 each. Bandanas are super useful for lots of things, and the bright orange color is good in an emergency to draw attention. Cost: $2
 
Gloves: I threw in a pair of wool glove liners for each bag. Wool is good as it is non-flammable and warm. The bail out bags I keep in the car have leather work gloves, so you could use the liners to double up for extra warmth. Cost: $1.50.
 
Belt: Finally, a sturdy belt is not something we always wear but is something that has many uses. I shelled out for a new, basic rigger's belt for each bag. Cost: $2.50.
 
Headlamp/Flashlight: The Bailout Bags in my cars have good minimags and/or surefires. So, for the ruck, I am throwing in a handful of lightsticks (Cyalume SnapLight Industrial Grade Chemical Light Sticks, White, 6" Long, 8 Hour Duration (Pack of 10). They cost about a buck each. I am including 2xwhite, 2xgreen, and 2xred. I am also tossing in a mini-GI style light ($2.89). Cost: $9.
 
First Aid Supplies:  Each car has a $20 basic first aid kit.
 
Firestarter: I am including 2xemergency candles. Cost: <$1.
 
Matches: I tossed in a box of matches. Cost: About $0.30 per box.
 
Knife:  I am hesitant to include sharp objects in the rucks as they will be left unsupervised around kids. So, for the rucks, I'm including a set of blunt tip kid scissors. Cost: $1.
 
Extra Food: I tosses an MRE in each ruck. I also threw in some granola bars and instant oatmeal packets. Cost: Free, I had all this in the pantry already.
 
Soap & Shampoo:  I added some travel cleaning supplies from a hotel.  Cost:  Free.
 
Stickers, colored sharpies:  I added some stickers and sharpies.  The sharpies are good for entertaining kids (let them draw) and for many more practical uses.  The stickers are a good way to distract kids.  Cost:  Free, had stuff already.

FIREARMS
The rifle paired with all this is a beater AK-47 "trunk gun."  I keep it stashed with an additional four magazines for a total of seven mags (four with the rifle, three in the chest carrier).  I figure one of the four mags goes into the rifle, then the other three get stuffed into cargo pockets or into the ruck sack, as the chest carrier can only carry three mags.

I also assume that I'll have my CCW pistol on my person.

CONCLUSION
This is definitely not a perfect rig.  My "western" MOLLE gear at home is significantly nicer.  However, for well under a hundred bucks (plus armor/mags/ammo), you can have a serviceable fighting loadout stashed in your car or office.  Moreover, the gear is very compact and fits in a medium sized gym bag, so it doesn't take up much space in the trunk of my car.  I've used this rig on a few field days out in the woods and while not super high speed, it is serviceable.

Even if you have a "nice" setup, I think it is well worth having an extra set of gear stashed in the car or in a cache.  This setup is an example of a low cost setup that most people can put together and stash away without breaking the bank.
 
End Post:
 
Ryan here. As always a big thanks to Chris for participating.  I like this setup. Most of my back up rigs are either built from the surplus gear box or US MILSURP specifically ALICE stuff. Doesn't make the Combloc stuff any better or worse, though it has an obvious edge in supporting the AK platform,  I just don't have much of it. Incidentally it occurs to me I have that same backpack in my operational cache.

As to stuff to add, change, etc all. The only big thing I can think of is that depending on the type of holster used for carry potentially a second, more tactical type holster could be beneficial. Many IWB CCW type holsters do not work particularly well when a plate carrier, chest rig, etc are added. Also they aren't the best for long walks, etc. An outside the waistband holster with some element of retention might be handy to have. Aside from that hearing protection was not mentioned (though it would be easy to overlook) and that could come in handy.

All in all a good rig and one that anybody can afford. 

Thoughts?

Friday, April 18, 2014

Fighting Load Contest Entry #16 by Meister

Today I am proud to bring Entry #16 of our Fighting Load Contest by Meister

We'll be talking chest rigs and battle belts as well as guns and get home bags/ assault packs. Get yours together to win some great prizes including:
1st: Blackhawk 3 day Assault Pack ($90) AND a $50 gift certificate from LuckyGunner.com ($50 value) plus 2 copies of The Reluctant Partisan by John Mosby.
2nd: HERC stove from Titan Ready Water ($169 value) plus The Reluctant Partisan by John Mosby.
Note: Prizes 1 and 2 are really closely matched. As such the overall winner can pick the Lucky Gunner stuff OR the HERC. 2nd place gets what is left. 2 books will go to #1 and 1 book to #2.
3rd Place: 3 Sport Berkey Water Bottles donated by LPC Survival ($69 value)
4th Place:  A Lifestraw donated by Camping Survival ($20 value)
5th Place: A pair of Gyver Gear survival tin's
6th Place: The Western Front (hardcopy) or 3x e books by Archer Garrett.
Wildcard: This one goes to whoever I want to give it to for whatever reason I feel like. It will be a grab bag donated by yours truly. The exact makeup is TBD depending on what I have lying around  and may include books, gear, medical stuff or even a couple silver dimes. ($30+  value).
For a good example of a post reference my EDC Contest entry. Those should give you a good idea what type of thing I'm looking for. I will probably do a full fighting load post some time before the contest is over.


The contest is closed but we still have a few more posts to show due to my technological issues and some field time. Voting will start after the last entry is shown on the blog. Voting will run for about a week and will decide the winner's who get the prizes. Onto the Entry.....

Ok, here's my entry. I've gotten some new gear and revised some old gear. I've swapped from the Glock 17 back to the HK USP45 Tactical that I've used for years now. It's a slight change for my first line gear. The other major change is I'm 100% switched over to 7.62x51 for my main rifle and DMR rifle. It was a change that took years of consideration to decide it was worth it. The advancement in the AR10 style platform has made it possible to get a more robust weapon that is as reliable as the heavier 7.62 platforms such as the M1A without the rock in magazines that slow reloading.
Gear List:
Blackhawk duty belt with condor molle drop leg platform and Blackhawk mag pouch. Blade tech kydex mag pouch that is removable if I use the belt with the vest. Safariland OD holster, HSGI IFAK pouch with kit and shears, tourniquet holder and CAT tourniquet attached. The Ifak pouch also has a Gemtech multicam can holder attached.
HK USP Tactical with SOS-45 Can.

LWRCI REPR 16" spiral fluted barrel, Houge grip, Gemtech muzzle brake, Trijicon Tri Power sight (for now- Elcan specter DR soon), Streamlight TLR1s, Urban ERT sling, LWRCI BUIS with Trijicon insert, and Magpul LR20 Pmag. Also has Gemtech TPR-s fast attach 30 cal can.

Blackhawk STRIKE plate carrier with Rhino level IIIA soft armor and Ceradyn ESAPI plates. HSGI double TACO mag pouches, TAG pistol mag pouch, Maxpedition Admin panel, Maxpedition dump pouch, Streamlight red/blue/white/IR strobe and flashlight. 6 Pmags, 3 pistol mags. Admin pouch has a beofang radio with in ear speaker and ptt/vox mic, compass, lighter, multitool, tweezers (anyone who's trained within a half mile of plywood knows why). Blackhawk Kalista II knife, III% patch and name patch.
My pack is surplus MARPAT 3 day assault pack that attaches to my MARPAT ruck. It holds 120 rounds of various 7.62 ammo, 50 rounds of HST +p ammo, 2 MRE's, 10 clif bars, 3L water bladder, aquamira, Dopp kit, TP, ouchie kit, cordage, stainless canister, Fire stuff, note pad and pencil, US night optics NVG's, Batteries,  Area map, flash drive, Zipties, money, spare keys, tarp, gloves and beanie, IR Perimeter alarm. I have topo maps loaded onto my Kindle Fire HDX, so it can be useful as well, as long as I bring along the solar panel charger.

The kit is scalable and works well for my needs. I can and do use the belt  hunting and it works great. Not as comfy as a padded belt but allows more freedom of movement. The biggest drawback to the kit is weight. Fully loaded the plate carrier is bordering 25 pounds, the assault pack is 14, add in the rifle and drop leg mags and I'm pushing 50 pounds of gear fully loaded, without a ruck. Protection comes at a price. If distance was in mind, I'd drop the plate carrier all together and dump the mags and such in the pack and go. Lots of options.

Thanks for another great contest, It's been just the motivation I needed to get my stuff squared away. I really like the new TACO pouches, but they were a pain to install. I'd have struggled had it not been for the video on the HSGI website. Much of my gear has been inspired by things I've learned from blogs, training sites, downright imitation and a lot of failures at the range and on the trail. MY future plans include a clip on FLIR sight, Elcan Specter DR, some new kydex for the belt, and a bunch of PT and classes this year. First class Starts 2/10, hopefully it's a little warmer.

Ryan here: Thanks to Meister for entering. Cool setup! I think a .308 semi auto rifle brings a lot of capability to the fight though it is more expensive and has less logistical support than the conventional 5.56 AR. The silencer for the handgun is an excellent idea, like that a lot. I also sort of appreciate the REPR and HK USP combo scratching that 7.62x51 and .45acp nitch [I was going to say 'old school' here but our military widely used the 7.62 rifle cartridge in the form of the M14 for like a week and a half and has been using the AR in 5.56 since the mid to late 60's roughly 50 years ago. Also we've been using the 9mm for a long time though that is still an ongoing conversation about effectiveness, especially with ball ammo. In any case there are still some folks who prefer these cartridges.] but in a more modern format utilizing a handgun with decent capacity via a double stack mag and a very nice rifle.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Fighting Load Contest Entry #15 by Greg

 Today I am proud to bring Entry #15 of our Fighting Load Contest by Greg

We'll be talking chest rigs and battle belts as well as guns and get home bags/ assault packs. Get yours together to win some great prizes including:
1st: Blackhawk 3 day Assault Pack ($90) AND a $50 gift certificate from LuckyGunner.com ($50 value) plus 2 copies of The Reluctant Partisan by John Mosby.
2nd: HERC stove from Titan Ready Water ($169 value) plus The Reluctant Partisan by John Mosby.
Note: Prizes 1 and 2 are really closely matched. As such the overall winner can pick the Lucky Gunner stuff OR the HERC. 2nd place gets what is left. 2 books will go to #1 and 1 book to #2.
3rd Place: 3 Sport Berkey Water Bottles donated by LPC Survival ($69 value)
4th Place:  A Lifestraw donated by Camping Survival ($20 value)
5th Place: A pair of Gyver Gear survival tin's
6th Place: The Western Front (hardcopy) or 3x e books by Archer Garrett.
Wildcard: This one goes to whoever I want to give it to for whatever reason I feel like. It will be a grab bag donated by yours truly. The exact makeup is TBD depending on what I have lying around  and may include books, gear, medical stuff or even a couple silver dimes. ($30+  value).
For a good example of a post reference my EDC Contest entry. Those should give you a good idea what type of thing I'm looking for. I will probably do a full fighting load post some time before the contest is over.

The contest is closed but we still have a few more posts to show due to my technological issues and some field time. Voting will start after the last entry is shown on the blog. Voting will run for about a week and will decide the winner's who get the prizes. Onto the Entry.....

Here is my Submission. I would be using this rig to leave a metro area to get to my home in beautiful rural America.
Here's whats in the bags. I tried to design my setup so I could lessen my load if needed.

Mossberg 590 with Kicklite Stock and Streamlight TRL-1
Shell Bag with 50 Rounds 12 gauge and CRKT Corkham FirstStrike; Worn on riggers belt right side

Custom AR Pistol with Bushnell TRS-25 and Streamlight TRL-1
Condor MC3 Chest Rig
Voodoo Tactical IFAK
Double Mag Pouch w/ 2 Mags
Radio
Gerber Multi Tool

Hazard 4 Kato worn cross body on the left side.
FN FNX-9 w/ 2 Mags
4 AR Mags
Water Filter Straw
Collapsible Cup
iPad
iPhone
Small First Aid Kit (Boo-Boo Bag)
4 Protein Bars
Gloves/Beanie
CRKT M16-14SFG
Streamlight PT2AA
N95 Filter Mask
Leatherman Wave

Kelty Redwing 50
100 Rounds 9mm
200 Rounds 5.56
10 New Millennium Energy Bars
Compass
CRKT Eating Tool
Magnesium Fire Starter
Hygiene Kit
Medicine Bag (Motrin, Tylenol, Sunscreen, Eye Drops, ETC)
Ndur Water Filter Straw
Steripen with Filter
Headlamp
Extra Batteries
3L Camelbak Bladder
Mountain Hardware Rain Coat and Boonie Hat
Otis 5.56/9MM Cleaning Kit
2 Mountain House Meals
Soda Can Alcohol Stove
2 Aluminum Water Bottles
1 Bottle Rubbing Alcohol
Streamlight PT2AA Flashlight
Duct Tape, 550 Cord, Crazy Glue, Electrical tape, and other small tools
2 Pairs extra socks and drawers
Thanks for letting me play along to.
Greg
 End Post

Ryan here: First thanks a lot to Greg for entering.  I like the guns a lot and the Kelty bag is nice too. I do have some concerns about how the satchel type bag and backpack will work together. Seems like stuff might be flopping all over the place. However if you've done some walking with it and tactical movement type stuff and it's good for you then roll with it.

Thoughts?

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Speech by a friend of Cliven Bundy

Speech by a friend of Cliven Bundy:


I haven't been following this whole thing in Nevada too close. That being said I hope it does not get stupid.

Monday, April 7, 2014

Fighting Load Contest Entry #14 by CarryAlert

Today I am proud to bring Entry #14 of our Fighting Load Contest by CarryAlert

We'll be talking chest rigs and battle belts as well as guns and get home bags/ assault packs. Get yours together to win some great prizes including:
1st: Blackhawk 3 day Assault Pack ($90) AND a $50 gift certificate from LuckyGunner.com ($50 value) plus 2 copies of The Reluctant Partisan by John Mosby.
2nd: HERC stove from Titan Ready Water ($169 value) plus The Reluctant Partisan by John Mosby.
Note: Prizes 1 and 2 are really closely matched. As such the overall winner can pick the Lucky Gunner stuff OR the HERC. 2nd place gets what is left. 2 books will go to #1 and 1 book to #2.
3rd Place: 3 Sport Berkey Water Bottles donated by LPC Survival ($69 value)
4th Place:  A Lifestraw donated by Camping Survival ($20 value)
5th Place: A pair of Gyver Gear survival tin's
6th Place: The Western Front (hardcopy) or 3x e books by Archer Garrett.
Wildcard: This one goes to whoever I want to give it to for whatever reason I feel like. It will be a grab bag donated by yours truly. The exact makeup is TBD depending on what I have lying around  and may include books, gear, medical stuff or even a couple silver dimes. ($30+  value).
For a good example of a post reference my EDC Contest entry. Those should give you a good idea what type of thing I'm looking for. I will probably do a full fighting load post some time before the contest is over.

The contest is closed but we still have a few more posts to show due to my technological issues and some field time. Voting will start after the last entry is shown on the blog. Voting will run for about a week and will decide the winner's who get the prizes. Onto the Entry.....

This setup has evolved from my BOB into a BOB/Fighting Hybrid.  My intended scenario is bugging out about 50 miles if the SHTF which might require reacting to contact either in my vehicle or on foot.  There are a few things I would change for a light infantry setup but I think they are all possible with what I have and would only take a few minutes of reconfiguration.  Finally, this is setup for my AR10 and only provides 7 mags but it's also compatible with an AR15 and that adds 3 mags on the chest for a total of 10 mags if that fits the situation better.

I wrestled with the "how do you wear a pack with a war belt" problem for quite a while until I saw the ALSPak system and decided to try to make something like it.  The concept is that your frame sheet or for my pack (CFP90) the aluminum stays connect to your war belt by resting in a pistol pouch.  This allows your pack to rest on your hips as it would with the waist belt but when you shrug out of the shoulder straps the pack just falls behind you.  Putting the pack on is easy, you just lean forward while reaching your hands back to guide the stays into the pouches.  So far I've had no issues but I keep the original waist belt in the pack just in case :)

Here is a detailed pic of how the aluminum stays fit onto the belt:



And Here's my fighting load:


First Line
Like most I'm trying to get it right cheap first and then upgrade as needed.
-Condor War Belt
-Leapers belt inside
-double pistol mag pouch
-2x2 308 mag pouch 
-2 x homemade pack connectors (kydex inserts in pistol pouches) 
-Roly Poly dump pouch in-between 
-Glock field knife (will likely change this as I don't like how low it hangs for vehicle use)
-Blade-Tech Light Bearing holster inside a blackhawk double mag pouch 
(ghetto but it works to keep pistol secure and makes it molle compatible)
-Glock 23 with TLR3 using Glock 22 mag with XGrip spacer
-E&E kit
-TQ 
-double pistol mag pouch with monocular and multitool

Second Line
This is my bullets and bandaids tier, I like the integrated pouches and the flexibility to use 2 types of mags.  I added the straps across the top of the mag pouches using the 5.11 rush tier straps because I don't like bungee straps.  I would prefer a full cover across the top but buckles seem like a decent compromise of speed, stealth and security.
-HSGI Weesatch 
-Level 4 Multi Hit Plates 
-Camelbak in rear plate pocket
-Admin Pocket with frog lube, compass, pur tabs, notepad, pen, clif bar, spare parts, small cleaning kit, etc
-L to R pouches - sidewinder light, mag, mag, mag, ATS med pouch Kenwood TH-F6A
-ATS med pouch - gloves, TQ, IBD, most of a TRG Ventilated Operator Kit (npa, cath, etc) 

Primary Weapon
I recently made the move to AR10 so this isn't even close to a finished state but I had to get it workable until I can afford a Vortex 2.5-10 and a Troy rail for it.  It's a very light gun (about 9lbs with the scope) but the ammo and mags keep me honest on my PT schedule. 
-Smith and Wesson M&P 10 
-Troy BUIS
-Burris XTR 1-4

Shameless Plug:  If you have an iPhone or iPad check out my CCW iPhone app Carry Alerts at:  www.CarryAlerts.com

Ryan here: The ALICE/ pistol mag pouch thing is interesting. I just dropped my BB low enough so the ALICE rests on top. I'm curious about the contents of the E&E pouch. Otherwise no big comments, I like the setup.

Thoughts?





Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Fighting Load Contest Entry #13 by KJ

 Today I am proud to bring Entry #13 of our Fighting Load Contest by KJ 

We'll be talking chest rigs and battle belts as well as guns and get home bags/ assault packs. Get yours together to win some great prizes including:
1st: Blackhawk 3 day Assault Pack ($90) AND a $50 gift certificate from LuckyGunner.com ($50 value) plus 2 copies of The Reluctant Partisan by John Mosby.
2nd: HERC stove from Titan Ready Water ($169 value) plus The Reluctant Partisan by John Mosby.
Note: Prizes 1 and 2 are really closely matched. As such the overall winner can pick the Lucky Gunner stuff OR the HERC. 2nd place gets what is left. 2 books will go to #1 and 1 book to #2.
3rd Place: 3 Sport Berkey Water Bottles donated by LPC Survival ($69 value)
4th Place:  A Lifestraw donated by Camping Survival ($20 value)
5th Place: A pair of Gyver Gear survival tin's
6th Place: The Western Front (hardcopy) or 3x e books by Archer Garrett.
Wildcard: This one goes to whoever I want to give it to for whatever reason I feel like. It will be a grab bag donated by yours truly. The exact makeup is TBD depending on what I have lying around  and may include books, gear, medical stuff or even a couple silver dimes. ($30+  value).
For a good example of a post reference my EDC Contest entry. Those should give you a good idea what type of thing I'm looking for. I will probably do a full fighting load post some time before the contest is over.

The contest is closed but we still have a few more posts to show due to my technological issues and some field time. Voting will start after the last entry is shown on the blog. Voting will run for about a week and will decide the winner's who get the prizes. Onto the Entry

My entry for TSLR's contest.
I've taken a page out of Mosby's book in that my gear is a tiered setup centered on my EDC. Rarely can you predict the fight, otherwise I'd stay home. But since that's not possible atleast this way I'm always left with something.
  With me everyday is my M&P9c w/ a 17rnd reload carried in a kydex appendix rig, Kershaw skyline,quark 123 , purrifacation tabs ,swat T and combat gauze and a lighter. 

Permitting I'm lucky enough to get my truck my mule sits fill with a 1ltr bladder, another reload, full blow out kit, boo boo kit ,some food ,filter straw,headlamp,chem lights,multi tool ,socks,hat and some cord.

 Plan is to get where I'm going as fast as I can.
I guess it's more of a GHB that's minimalist,light and will sustain me long enough to get home to the Fam and the rest of the gear.

 The bag is a camelbak BFM loaded with the usual suspects , Food,ammo ,shelter, more water a handy talk ham radio (more for eavesdropping than anything else, I'm going for my technician license.

    Spike Tactical AR w/ eotech 512 , another cat-T ,inforce WML.
Banshee PC w/ lvl3 , tactical tailor mini mav , HSGI bleeder,surefire G2, 1 pistol mag.
Emdom belt  the holster works with my 9c or the full size.
Let me know if you need any more info and feel free to change whatever you need to.
Thanks, KJ

Ryan here: As always thanks for playing. I like this setup a lot. Honestly it's quite close to what I have, particularly the bags. Thoughts?

Monday, March 31, 2014

Fighting Load Contest Entry #12 by High Desert Livin

 Today I am proud to bring Entry #11 of our Fighting Load Contest by High Desert Livin

We'll be talking chest rigs and battle belts as well as guns and get home bags/ assault packs. Get yours together to win some great prizes including:
1st: Blackhawk 3 day Assault Pack ($90) AND a $50 gift certificate from LuckyGunner.com ($50 value) plus 2 copies of The Reluctant Partisan by John Mosby.
2nd: HERC stove from Titan Ready Water ($169 value) plus The Reluctant Partisan by John Mosby.
Note: Prizes 1 and 2 are really closely matched. As such the overall winner can pick the Lucky Gunner stuff OR the HERC. 2nd place gets what is left. 2 books will go to #1 and 1 book to #2.
3rd Place: 3 Sport Berkey Water Bottles donated by LPC Survival ($69 value)
4th Place:  A Lifestraw donated by Camping Survival ($20 value)
5th Place: A pair of Gyver Gear survival tin's
6th Place: The Western Front (hardcopy) or 3x e books by Archer Garrett.
Wildcard: This one goes to whoever I want to give it to for whatever reason I feel like. It will be a grab bag donated by yours truly. The exact makeup is TBD depending on what I have lying around  and may include books, gear, medical stuff or even a couple silver dimes. ($30+  value).
For a good example of a post reference my EDC Contest entry. Those should give you a good idea what type of thing I'm looking for. I will probably do a full fighting load post some time before the contest is over.


The contest is closed but we still have a few more posts to show due to my technological issues and some field time. Voting will start after the last entry is shown on the blog. Voting will run for about a week and will decide the winner's who get the prizes. Onto the Entry

Wolverines!!........Attack! Ok so what I'm posting is my joe sixpack, low budget partisan loadout. You know, the one the Japanese imperial feared behind every blade of grass. I'll start out w/ the long gun. Submitted for your approval a sears & roebuck (Husqvuarna) bolt action. Chambered in the readily available, kill anything 30 06. Acquired for 200.00. This models sports a 4x optic, holds 4 in the magazine, 1 in the pipe. Backup irons are in full effect.

    Ammo for the husky is carried in old Australian canvas 7.62 battle packs. Each compartment will hold ten rds, however I keep 5. Reload, don't worry about snapping  closed. That's 50 rds in bandoleers, and 40 in the alice.

    Next the super reliable (and super heavy) , Ruger P85 w/ three 15 rd. mags . This was picked up w/a 250.00 value trade. It rides in a surplus (Bianchi?) flap holster. Riding opposite, is the pre K-bar WWII RH PAL 36, in a homemade sheath my wife made. A sweet garage sale score, at 20.00.

Edited to include- There is also a first aid kit in here somewhere.

   Riding in my Vietnam era alice (10 bucks) is the usual survival/bugout gear. Including: spare socks/undies, wool watch cap, boonie cap, Omnivore (runs on AA, AAA,&cr123) flashlight, pelican headlamp, 2 bics,ferocerium rod/vasellballs, spare specs,  gorilla tape 1", container Vaseline, water purification pills x2, LG bandana, P-cord, AA batteries, compact puffy jacket/stuff sack, surplus wool pants, tack gloves, survival bivy, diamond sharpener, super leatherman gen 1, spyderco native, 2 contractor bags/ranger bands, altoid can mini survival,  1 Qt stainless nested in stainless pot, a pair leupold 10X compact (50.00 0n sale) Binos, camelback bladder in alice, and various freeze dried meals & bars. Of course realtree cammo will be in full effect. As always, thanks for the read ryan.  -HDL
 Ryan here: First of all a big thanks to High Desert Livin for posting. I may or may not have halfway twisted his arm to participate but I digress. Anyway there is a lot to like here. First this is definitely a Joe Sixpack type budget setup yet perfectly functional. HDL got the guns for $450 but he bought deals. $500-550 is probably more realistic unless you can be pretty patient. Still that price for both a rifle and pistol is very doable for all but the poorest folks. The other stuff could quickly be pieced together  an item or two per payday without breaking the bank. Heck most fairly well prepared people could slap together a setup like this out of spare stuff lying around. That brings us to our next point. If there are guns you have, even emergency/ tertiary type back ups that you reasonably might fight with you really should have the gear to carry the necessary stuff. Worst case Cousin Joe or the guy you swap it to will be thankful and the cost is pretty low.

Thoughts?

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Fighting Load Contest Entry #11 by Ragamuffin

Today I am proud to bring Entry #11 of our Fighting Load Contest by Ragamuffin

We'll be talking chest rigs and battle belts as well as guns and get home bags/ assault packs. Get yours together to win some great prizes including:
1st: Blackhawk 3 day Assault Pack ($90) AND a $50 gift certificate from LuckyGunner.com ($50 value) plus 2 copies of The Reluctant Partisan by John Mosby.
2nd: HERC stove from Titan Ready Water ($169 value) plus The Reluctant Partisan by John Mosby.
Note: Prizes 1 and 2 are really closely matched. As such the overall winner can pick the Lucky Gunner stuff OR the HERC. 2nd place gets what is left. 2 books will go to #1 and 1 book to #2.
3rd Place: 3 Sport Berkey Water Bottles donated by LPC Survival ($69 value)
4th Place:  A Lifestraw donated by Camping Survival ($20 value)
5th Place: A pair of Gyver Gear survival tin's
6th Place: The Western Front (hardcopy) or 3x e books by Archer Garrett.
Wildcard: This one goes to whoever I want to give it to for whatever reason I feel like. It will be a grab bag donated by yours truly. The exact makeup is TBD depending on what I have lying around  and may include books, gear, medical stuff or even a couple silver dimes. ($30+  value).
For a good example of a post reference my EDC Contest entry. Those should give you a good idea what type of thing I'm looking for. I will probably do a full fighting load post some time before the contest is over.


The contest is going to run from today 16 December to  around 1 March. Voting will start after the last entry is shown on the blog. Voting will run for about a week and will decide the winner's who get the prizes. 

Pen name,
"Ragamuffin for Liberty"
-START-
Here is what I have set up thus far, as I do more tests and PE with it I will adjust as needed.
Inline image 1

Battle Belt
0. HSGI Battle Belt, inner Condor duty belt.
1. Pouch with Ontario XM-1 folding knife.
2. HSGI Double Taco (x2 mags)
3. Condor double mag stacker (x4 mags)
4. GGG (Grey Ghost Gear) Dump pouch.
5. Fox tactical GI 1qt Canteen pouch
6. GGG Slim medical pouch (attached are CAT and EMT shears)
7. GGG 5x8 Utility Pouch.
8. Pouch w/Surefire E2DL
9. Pouch with pistol mag (16rd)
10. Gerber pouch with Effect AR Muli-tool
11. Cheap Drop leg holster w/mag pouch (.40cal XDM not shown)

PC
12. GGG Minimalist plate carrier with GGG 2L hydration pack. Level III AR500 Plates with spall coating.
13. Condor double stacker used as a radio pouch (HAM Yaesu FT60)
14. Gerber LMF2 fixed blade.
15. Pro-tec "Bravo" bump helmet

Ruck pictured is a surplus medium ALICE pack (with a couple of mag pouches that I threw on). Gloves are a cheap $4 fingerless pair from Wal-mart, they work!

Battle Belt Discussion
There is definitely a Max Velocity influence here. Large pouches are situated back to enable prone position; including room to tuck my right leg up, slightly rolling my diaphragm up to the left. Currently overall weight is just over 17lbs (with x6 mags, 1 quart of H2O, rations, etc..) I haven't decided if I want/need a harness; further hiking/running will dictate. On my left hip I wanted quick mag access but also but also secure retention of mags. Thus the combo of 1 HSGI pouch with condor's kangaroo pouch for the rest.  I put the dump pouch where it's at on the mag pouch because for me it would be too far back otherwise, and it saves belt real-estate. It's still decently low profile for my purposes.
Inline image 2
On my right hip it's a bit more crowded, but it balances the weight. The utility pouch is more like a mini survival kit including cliff bars, trail mix, blastmatch, froglube/solvent, bore snake, lifestraw etc. I love the GGG IFAK pouch, it only takes up 2 rows of molle; mine is packed with the usual IFAK items (Israeli battle dressing, tourniquet, etc). I took MV's advice in having at least 1 canteen on your BB, the extra pockets holds my compass, purification tablets and anything that didn't fit in my IFAK. After several 2 mile hikes/runs I kept my handgun in a dropleg holster, out of the way, but there if I need it. Total of two 16rd handgun mags.
Inline image 3
I have the GGG minimalist PC since I chose to only have front/back protection (if worn at all) and still maintain mobility (I like to run). And since I"m on a civilian budget for a worse case scenario, I have the heavy 7.5lb AR500Armor plates (Black Friday deals are irresistible).   Radio is optional at this point, can be switched out for mags in a crisis (pouch was on sale, cheaper than buying dedicated HHR pouch). I also have a stand alone Camelback that I can wear instead of the PC to reduce weight and still maintain water capacity. With 2L of water the PC weighs about 24.4lbs.
Inline image 4

The Protec helmet is lightweight, offers some non-ballistic protection.
The ALICE pack is currently around 22-23lbs. I won't list all the items or go into details. But it includes Mountainhouse, Emberlit stove, GI bivy cover/light sleeping bag, extra ammo, batteries, spare clothing items, and a few sandbags tossed in. Soon it will also have a homemade thermal image shield tarp.
Not pictured is a AR platform with a Aimpoint PRO red dot and a Springfield .40 cal XDM.
Inline image 7
End Post

Ryan here. I really like this setup which could be because it is very similar to my own. He's also got a few nice accessories I'd like to get to complete my setup.  There are two things I would change. The first is moving the fixed blade knife to the battle belt. I see the knife as part of your survival type load out so even if you aren't wearing the PC it should be present. Really if everything goes to hell you want some ammo and gear to live awhile for which the knife is of vital importance. That would also let you eliminate the folding knife on the belt dropping weight a tiny bit. The second thing would be to upgrade the holster. Otherwise it is an excellent setup.
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