Question of the Day: Do You Have a Chest Rig?

I’m not now nor have I ever been a military fantasist. I don’t fancy joining a militia or taking on, well, anyone. But it’s kinda hard to stop at one self-defense gun and a holster and a safe and some ammo. You know; if you’re “serious” about armed self-defense. I mean, a handgun’s great for around town and all. But in terms of home defense it’s best used as an interim weapon on the way to a shotgun. And if you’re going outside to defend your property after, say, a hurricane, an AR-style rifle would be my first choice. And if you’ve got this sort of firearms assortment, you start thinking about how to carry extra ammo and . . . stuff. The prepper thing kicks-in. The next thing you know you’re saying, yeah I should carry around four light sticks! So, where are you on the continuum between one gun and done and a chest rig?

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About Robert Farago

Robert Farago is the Publisher of The Truth About Guns (TTAG). He started the site to explore the ethics, morality, business, politics, culture, technology, practice, strategy, dangers and fun of guns.

111 Responses to Question of the Day: Do You Have a Chest Rig?

  1. avatarRabbi says:

    I have about 6 rigs..all designed to spare rifle and pistol mags, most are ballistic carriers as well. No well-dressed man should be without.

  2. avatarLance Suaer says:

    I run an AK-47 with a chest rig. 6 mag pouches, 2 liter water bladder, radio and medic bag.

  3. avatarChris says:

    That’s some nice body armor you have there :)

    • avatarBackyardsniper says:

      I hope you’re being sarcastic, because that offers no ballistic protection at all.

      Robert, you should do a post about what classifies as armor and what doesn’t.

      • avatarChuck says:

        I think he was poking fun at the mainstream media and their propensity to classify anything that looks scary or different as body armor.

  4. avatarCoyote Gray says:

    I’m a prepper. I see it as a lifestyle and hobby that will actually pay of should the worst ever happen. I used the old “war belts” and eventually the LBV’s in the Corps. I don’t have one now, but I plan to have some sort of chest/vest storage in the future. Something low key. Something grey man. A web belt serves me now. It holds my essentials after I shed my day pack.

  5. avatarMike in NC says:

    No chest rig… not even a “shoot me” vest!

  6. avatarShire-man says:

    After seeing them and a few of those “battle belt” things with suspenders being used in some classes and a couple of 3-gun matches I’m considering picking up one or the other just to see what it’s all about.

    Never wanted to be a military dress-up poser and I’ve actively avoided much of the tacti-cool market and lingo but if so many are doing/using a thing there must be a reason, right? At least I should investigate to see if there is a reason.

    I can hide the shame of playing dress up from prying eyes and sell it if I find no practical use for it.

    • avatarPyrotek85 says:

      A chest rig can be as simple as mag carrier for your rifle, just like many people have for the pistols they carry. I agree with not going overboard with it, but being able to carry extra mags is pretty basic IMO.

    • avatarCurzen says:

      i see a battle belt style contraption in my future. will pass on a chest rig.

    • avatarBarstow Cowboy says:

      In addition to being very tactical, a chest rig/tactical vest can also be very slimming. When you wear it in a group setting, having a superior tactical vest can aid you in winning tactical arguments with other military fantisists. “Who you gonna believe, ME, the guy with a $500 chestborne assault tactical rig, or this idiot who probably paid $19.99 for his surplus H gear at Bud’s Army/Navy?”

  7. avatarjwm says:

    i guess i’m not a well dressed man. I’ve got a safe full of guns but little in the way of tacticool gear to go with it. I don’t even have holsters for all my pistols. My long guns are mostly slingless.

    All those guns and bins full of ammo and I guess I’m near defenseless, not a single chest rig or bandolier in the crowd.

    • avatarAlphaGeek says:

      jwm, single-point slings are a revelation for any kind of open-field shooting. You know, the kind where you don’t have a nice clean table for setting stuff down. Check out these two links:

      http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001EBXR7C/
      http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00563HX6K/

      I gotta tell you, it’s super nice to be able to hang my shotgun or rifle from the sling and have both hands free without the interference of a full two-attach-point over-the-shoulder sling. If we get together to shoot sometime I’ll be glad to show you how well this setup works.

      • avatarjwm says:

        Thanks for the links AG. I’ve actually seen those types of slings at the gun shows. Might try to get one for my house shotgun. could see where it would be good to have.

        My urban tactical gear is pretty much restricted to a day pack in the trunk of my car in case of some sort of emergency. We do live in earthquake country after all. I figure add a pistol aqnd some reloads to the bag and it will deal with most normal emergencies.

        My system might have a few shortcomings in a full blown Mad Max scenario, but I think it’ll handle more mundane problems.

        As for getting together to shoot. I’ve never had a problem with making a play date for the range. Although family committments have me wrapped for the next couple of months I should be able to shake loose in March.

        Hopefully by then the ammo stocks will be in better shape at the suppliers.

        • avatarAlphaGeek says:

          I might be able to do better than our local ranges. Working on arranging some coyote hunts, which will naturally include open-field fun shooting, on the same ranch in Ukiah where we went on our fruitless-yet-fun turkey hunt in November.

          Drop me a note at Silicon Valley Alpha Geek at gmail dot com so I’ll have your contact info and I’ll update you as March gets closer.

        • avatarjwm says:

          Had my wife show me how to send an email AG. Hopefully it went thru ok. Sounds like a good day.

  8. avatar4thInfantryVet says:

    I have a “Batman” belt. Just an old issue pistol belt from the Army. It holds the ammo, holster, flashlight, various pouches with all sorts of stuff and a nice knife and doesn’t make me feel as suffocated as a chest rig would, is easier to put on and keeps my training the same (as opposed to training without a vest and then trying to fight with a vest). I’m a prepper also and it’s just easier to buy a $10 surplus pistol belt than a $200 tac-vest and still have money leftover for ammo, food, water, etc.

    • avatarBarstow Cowboy says:

      Ammo, food and water are fine, don’t get me wrong, but if you don’t cover the basics first ($500 “chest rig” with velcro and pull tabs, in case you get into an upsidedown gun battle) you won’t get far enough to need all that fancy ammo, food and water.

  9. avatarAlphaGeek says:

    A very nice 5.11 Tactical shoot-me-first vest hangs next to my long-gun safe. It has useful stuff in it, but none of those very useful items are obviously visible to, say, a friendly local LEO checking on us after a major earthquake. It’s also very good at covering up other useful stuff that may be riding on my belt.

    Frankly, I don’t think mil-spec chest rigs are a good idea in 99.99% of the situations that private citizens are likely to find themselves in. Sure, they’re fun for airsoft play and some shooting competitions, but even post-natural-disaster I wouldn’t want to make it so easy to ID me as a person of interest.

    Also, you would not believe the amount of ammo and equipment you can load into a 5.11 Tactical vest. Between the vest and my favorite pair of 5.11 taclite pro pants, I can carry a full basic load of rifle, pistol, AND shotgun ammo without looking like Tactical Timmy playing Army Commando dress-up.

    • avatar4thInfantryVet says:

      + 1, good point on the “not being conspicuous” comment!

    • avatarAccur81 says:

      Dang AG, I don’t have a chest rig!

      I’ve got tactical backpacks and go-bags, but no chest rig. Now I’m really upset that we didn’t have that Scotch when you were down in SoCal. I do have some 5.11 pants. Maybe I should get a rig to go with it.

      • avatarAlphaGeek says:

        Heh. I wore one pair of 5.11 taclite pants through 3 days at Disney. Looked just as clean at the end as they did the first day. Good gear is good gear in my book, as long as I don’t look like Tacticool Timmy.

        I should also mention that I don’t wear the vest in public, much less loaded up with a full set of gear. ;)

      • avatarLance says:

        Dont bother get LC2 ALICE gear alot more durable and carries more gear than MOLLE or chest rigs.

    • avatartdiinva says:

      My tacticool vest comes from LL Bean. It has everything that a 5.11 has except a concealed carry pocket. Still it is long enough to hide a full sized pistol. I know that many TTAGers sneer at the peppyness of Bean clothing but if the purpose of ccw is to conceal then why wouldn’t you want to dress like a gun grabber?

      • avatarAlphaGeek says:

        Filson also makes some great load-bearing outerwear, such as their Travel Vest. Has the definite benefit of not being immediately recognizable as a 5.11 “Shoot Me First” vest.

        Seriously expensive stuff, in some cases, but warranted for life and significantly overdesigned where it counts.

    • avatarBarstow Cowboy says:

      You don’t think that a 5.11 vest and taclite pants make you stand out as someone who might be armed?

  10. avatarJan says:

    I just recently acquired a “war belt” with spare pistol and rifle mag pouches. Getting a med kit and some more doodads for it this year. Maybe shot shell holders if I ever get around to 3-gunning this year.

  11. avatarLance says:

    MOLLE and Chest rigs suck. Prefer my ALICE gear!!!!!!!!!!

  12. avatarST says:

    Let’s devote this space to a task seemingly few have bothered doing-namely approaching “prepping” from a logical standpoint.Lets toss out the wild Mad Max scenarios and focus on realistic situations a citizen may face.

    In the event of a severe emergency the LAST thing Id want to do is advertise that in armed. Wearing chest rigs and thigh holsters advertises to all who see you that you’re armed- and natch, you’ll still have to socialize with people even after the world ends, some of whom will be strangers. On top of that, guns are a very common resource especially among criminals. A smart bad guy who sees someone waltzing about with tactical gear will track them back to whatever hideout they live at, observe their movements, then strike when the time is right from ambush. A tac vest won’t save you from a 30-06 bullet fired from 200 yards away by a dead eye scumbag.

    Thus, if the world ends ill be concealed carrying just like if I were to walk through the town square. I want the scumbags to think I’m just another unarmed yuppie sheep-until its too late for them to realize their fatal mistake.

  13. avatar4thInfantryVet says:

    Also, to whoever’s vest is in the vid:

    Those chem lights ain’t going to do any good stored out of the package like that. It cuts the shelf life from around 4 years to around 1 or less. I’ve seen it while deployed, we carried them like that and the ones we didn’t use over the course of the year we cracked and they either a. didn’t put out enough light or b. didn’t work at all.

    They were all from the same batch and weren’t set to expire for another 2 and a half years.

    • avatarAlphaGeek says:

      That’s because the foil envelopes they come packed in generally have little puffs of inert gas (CO2 or nitrogen) in them, and the oxygen in ambient air inactivates the chemicals in the glowstick as it slowly makes its way to the contents over time.

      You can make fast-access glowstick carriers by getting airtight cigar tubes and dropping in a chip of dry ice with the glowstick when you seal it in. The tubes are good at keeping glowsticks from breaking, too.

      • avatarg says:

        +1 geek power.

        Yeah, store your materials properly folks (chem lights) included!

        • avatarBarstow Cowboy says:

          I thought that guy on the video called them “tactical lights”. Dang it, I went to the store today and asked them for some “tactical lights” just like I saw in that video, and I’ll bet they charged me extra. Shucks.

  14. avatarCCW Guy says:

    Are there any TTAG reviews on chest rigs? I’d like one that doubles as a plate carrier.

  15. avatarJLR says:

    You think itching for a chest rig is bad? I’ve been thinking about getting a chest rig, and I’ve started thinking why not just got a plate carrier and hard armor?

  16. avatarIn Memphis says:

    I just have an orange sash with my CCW badge on it lol

    No chest rig but I dont think its an over the top idea. I mean most of us can argue the idea of a long gun for defense. Maybe throwing on a rig with a couple hundred rounds of 5.56 is excessive for a bump in the night but having all that ammo quickly at hand is better than packing up while the SHTF.

    • avatarAlphaGeek says:

      If it’s serious enough to for me to go to the long gun safe for the shotgun, it’s serious enough to throw on the vest that already has spare pistol mags, shotgun shells, flexcuffs, knife, etc. all stowed where I can find them by touch.

      For me, it’s not so much as a SHTF/bug-out prep item as it is the equivalent of a fully equipped duty belt with appropriate items for home defense. Except I can slip it on in 2 seconds, not the 20 it could take to put on a loaded duty belt under stress.

  17. avatarIng says:

    I don’t have a chest rig…but my wife has a pretty nice one.
    :)

  18. avatarwabiker says:

    Never understood the use of velcro type fasteners or magazine pouches w/o flaps on Combat gear.

    • avatarSalty Bear says:

      Velcro fasteners auto-latch after you pull a mag out, which helps guarantee retention of any other magazines in that pouch.

      I don’t get having no flaps either. All sorts of dirt and junk is bound to get down in there.

  19. avatarKaliope says:

    Hip-and-Thigh Rig for me, thank you. AK mags on my off-hand hip in a classy leather pouch, .38 Special speed loaders in a pouch behind that, and a .38 on my strong-hand thigh.

    Because I’m a classy cowboy. With an AK.

    • avatarCharlie says:

      I like it, but for my applicaton it’s either too big or too little. And I expect it would flop around while running.

      I’m thinking about a sling pack for those days when I’m in and out of non-CHP country.

      Charlie

      • avatarAlphaGeek says:

        I quite like my UTG clone of the Maxpedition Fatboy Versipack. Had to trim off a bunch of loose threads and replace some of the too-noisy zipper pulls, but if you’re not as picky about your gear the UTG bags are good to go right out of the box.

        The pistol compartment is surprisingly easy for bag-checkers to miss, too. Multiple trips through the Disney bag-inspection checkpoints last week and not one of them asked to see inside that pocket. I guess they weren’t concerned with finding anything smaller than grenades in the main pouch. Or something.

        • avatarMD Matt says:

          +1 I have 2 maxpedition versa packs (the leo as a bug out and the edc for my lunch/utility bag)
          They are outstanding.
          The design is easy to grab and easy to carry.

    • avatarChrisM says:

      I’ve got the same bag. Been wondering if it would be suficient for taking a carbine course. I’m a big beliver in train like you’ll fight. I don’t ever see myself with a full blown chest rig. Although I have been considering one of the Micro Rigs from Original SOE gear.

  20. avatarRopingdown says:

    I think a Versace suit and a pair of beat-up 90′s Guccis is the thing. In other words, camouflage. In the post-re-education camp world they’ll never see it coming when the 7″ 44 magnum slides out of your baguette bag, a mere crust fronting the barrel. Adapt. Bug-out is over. Bag-In is the thing, but keep the heavy stuff in the trunk and demand a front-row parking spot. [On the serious side I use a stiff canvas outback vest with enough pockets to knock a Penn Station pickpocket out of his OODA loop. More would look excessive in my neighborhood and it wears well under a three-season coat.]

    • avatarAlphaGeek says:

      Somebody has played a little too much “Left 4 Dead”. (It might be me, since I recognize the outfit you describe…)

      • avatarRopingdown says:

        I suppose I was describing me eight or ten years ago, before I changed shoe brands. I’m so suburban and bookish/tennis-ish that I don’t even know what “Left 4 Dead” is, a game or TV show. I just think that associating concealed carry or a taste for firearms like the modern sporting rifle with a more civil image would benefit the votes to come, and they will come, both in legislatures and on appellate benches. Perhaps I’m just a 61-year-old stick in the mud? I accept that.

        • avatarAlphaGeek says:

          It’s a zombie-killing video game. One of the four characters you can play is dressed pretty much exactly as you describe. :)

          http://bulk2.destructoid.com/ul/142086-l4d2.jpg

          I also think it’s important to show diversity among 2A advocates, too. I dress and look like your typical Silicon Valley exec, because, well, that’s what I am. Unfortunately it’s the OFWGs who tend to be the face of things since they have the most time to spend on visible activism.

  21. avatarTony says:

    Though I currently reside in the PRC, back home I prefer to keep a discrete “murse” in my vehicle with 3x30rd mags, pistol, first aid kit, flashlight etc… In my mind a chest rig would make me look like target (to both BG’s and GG’s) during an incident and would make me look like a psycho afterwards.

    There are additional issues such as snagging, noise (say… mags banging the ground while going prone) speed of deployment, non-universal compatibility (hard to share), and no large open compartment for incidental stowage.

    Humans have used bags to carry stuff for tens of thousand of years. I think it should work pretty well for anyone who isn’t active duty military, LEO or batman.

    • avatarAlphaGeek says:

      Right there with you. I have a side-sling bag (UTG clone of the Maxpedition MAX bag) with the essentials stowed along with my disaster-response gear, boots, blankets, water, etc. in the back of my truck.

      If I ever have to hoof it 30-40 miles home from work because all of the bridges are down after a 9.5 quake, the last thing I need is to be hassled by a stressed-out LEO because I’m wearing a tactical chest rig…

  22. avatarSA Operator says:

    I have this rig in multicam. It is extremely high quality. Colin’s production time is lengthy, took over 3 months to get mine, but it was worth it. I run 8 ak mags, with 3 glock 21 mags in front and a led flashlight in the other pistol mag spot. I have a holster on my right side for my g21, and on the left side I have an EMT pouch full of goodies.

    http://762tactical.com/chest-rigs/operator-chest-rig.html

  23. avatarRalph says:

    That gizmo looks like Anna Nicole Smith’s tactical brassiere. From her fat period.

  24. avataroutwardhound says:

    I’ve got a crapload of military surplus from 22 years service & multiple deployments. It all sits in a duffel bag and is unlikely to ever see the light of day again.

  25. avatarSsgtghost81 says:

    After Iraq I was able to keep some of my gear due to the new stuff coming out. I have a nice vest with ballistic plates for home defense. Can take a 7.62 to the chest. As far as tac gear basic suspenders with all the things that make you look scary. 3 P90 mags,5 1911 mags, ka-bar.

  26. avatarAstroexec says:

    One could spend weeks answering this. The rabbit hole is steep and deep. My suggestions are as follows.

    First.
    View James Yeager’s TacticalResponse videos on youtube. I found this Channel about 3 weeks ago and have been watching his ‘hundreds’ of videos. Highly informed… Highly Skilled… Highly experienced.

    Second.
    After all this Yeager-viewing, I have come to realize I am coming up short on medical skills…i.e. I have none. Watch “ThePatriotNurse” on youtube for that.

    Third.
    As your embedded youtube feed points out, SOE gear is excellent and chest rigs of all sorts are available from them. Please note that almost every tactical training video I have seen from competent people almost always show medical gear strapped to something. Word to the wise.

    Fourth.
    One needs to be very practical here. You don’t buy the rig then figure out what to put in it or how to use it. The rig is a tool. Start with… ‘What are you trying to do?’, then buy the tool to meet this need. From what I can gather, one might have four basic ‘rigs’. A). Automobile battle bag/rig. B). Day at the range bag/rig. C). Home Battle. D). Bugout Bag.

    There are so many variations with both mission and with equipment. James not only has good training, he points you to his minions who also have good videos.

    • avatarLC Judas says:

      “The rabbit hole is deep…”

      I like that phrase. Looking at your comment, I’m going to look up the nurse you describe. As all the gear in the world isn’t going to help when the inevitable bullets flying hurts someone you’re trying to keep intact. (yourself included of course).

    • avatarmatt says:

      View James Yeager’s TacticalResponse videos on youtube. I found this Channel about 3 weeks ago and have been watching his ‘hundreds’ of videos. Highly informed… Highly Skilled… Highly experienced.

      lol, James Yeager is a tool and a coward, it has been well documented on the internet. I even offered to take him up on his offer to call him a coward to his face, but he refused to send the plane tickets he previously offered, and then took down the call-him-a-coward-challenge video.

      If you read his after-action report from the one firefight he was ever in, he admitted he fired blindly even though he couldnt see a enemy, and then proceeded to fire upon a civilian vehicle. His biggest accomplishment in life is being the chief of police of a pop. ~300 town.

      • avatarmatt says:

        I forgot to include, the only reason he and his team got in the fire fight is because he was driving the lead car in a convoy, he forgot he took it out of gear and engaged the parking brake, and when he hit the gas and it didnt move, he assumed it was disabled by gunfire rather than his own stupidity. Had he knew how to drive (let alone shoot) he wouldnt have gotten his team members killed. He was also subsequently sued by the security company he was working for.

        • avatarWLCE says:

          how about you stop repeating internet, youtube rumor bullshit matt?

          nobody cares. the AAR is available on defense review.

        • avatarmatt says:

          We got a Yeager fanboi here. Everything I claimed is in the after action report, not a single piece of it was rumor. And ask him to make the video linked in this blog post not private, if you want to see the coward challenge video. Remove the spaces due to the spam filter:
          http://www.every daynodays off.com/2012/12/06/buck-yeager-on-say-it-to-my-face-and-we-will-see-what-happens/

          On top of that, he says crazy things like “putting someone infront of the firing line makes people safer”:
          http://www.every daynodays off.com/2011/08/22/tactical-response-training-try-not-to-shoot-the-photographer/

          Do you want to be involved in a DGU, just to have the states attorney bring up that you were trained by someone who doesnt understand basic gun safety, and thinks it is legal to duel in a state where it is explicitly banned by the constitution? Or have them bring up that your mancrush is a look a like for the female-to-male transvestite porn star Buck Yeager?

        • avatarmatt says:

          We got a Yeager fanboi here. Everything I claimed is in the after action report, not a single piece of it was rumor. And ask him to make the video linked in this blog post not private, if you want to see the coward challenge video. Remove the spaces due to the spam filter:
          http://www.every daynodays off.com/2012/12/06/buck-yeager-on-say-it-to-my-face-and-we-will-see-what-happens/

          On top of that, he says crazy things like “putting someone infront of the firing line makes people safer”:
          http://www.every daynodays off.com/2011/08/22/tactical-response-training-try-not-to-shoot-the-photographer/

          Do you want to be involved in a DGU, just to have the states attorney bring up that you were trained by someone who doesnt understand basic gun safety, and thinks it is legal to duel in a state where it is explicitly banned by the constitution?

        • avatarWLCE says:

          FLAME DELETED

        • avatarWLCE says:

          in response to the video posted:

          what are you, 12 years old?

          grow the f–k up.

  27. avatarBackyardsniper says:

    Hell, my local fleet farm has some desert camo surplus rigs for about $50, might have to pick one up one of these days.

  28. avatarScott says:

    I actually do have a chest rig. It’s a pretty simple AK chest rig holds six magazines, works pretty well for PMags. At the moment it has a cheap holster that I don’t use and a SAW mag pouch, but I might put a medical pouch on in place of the SAW pouch, which pretty much gets used as a general purpose pouch anyway.

  29. avatarjustin says:

    no chest rig, but I do have a tactical vest. Only used once in a practical situation, but that was only so I could use the pistol holster since the weight of my Browning was pulling down my pants.

  30. avatarWLCE says:

    I dont care for MOLLE gear. I think so much more could have been evolved from the ALICE set up, which is lightweight and very, very durable.

    My ALICE LCE has the LBV straps, enough pockets to hold ten AR15 mags, two canteens, a buttpack (to fit a ecotat shelter and hygiene), and a flashlight. It is lightweight and in my opinion, do everything just as good if not better than any MOLLE set up out there.

    In fact the only MOLLE gear I have is my mystery ranch bag (which has MOLLE straps) and plate carrier (which is intended for home defense and is designed to be worn with my LCE.

    Needless to say, chest rigs are useful to have but the mistake many people make is they just go for body armor and/or a plate carrier (very few get into good enough physical shape to move with that equipment). until you have mastered the basics, it is most optimal to start off without armor, therefore, a standard chest rig or LCE is highly useful.

  31. avatarPatrick Shockley says:

    I find the the best vest to use for a bugout/ active shooter situation is one that is simple. There are many dedicated vests as well as small MOLLE chest rigs that can hold up to four mag pouches.

  32. avatarmatt says:

    Blackhawk plate carrier with 4 double mag pouches, a chest holster and Troy Pinardi device over a Ranger Body Armor vest.

  33. avatarhasdrubal says:

    5.11 carrier with plates, 2 spare AR10 mags, trauma kit, door wedges, multi tool, and a good length of 550 cord. That’s for work, but I keep another one at home set up for AR15. Just mags and trauma kit on that one.

    Plates are a great thing to have, but soft armor is good too. One thing I would say is don’t carry more mags than you can use, because it will just slow you down. If you need ten mags, the threat is probably bad enough that you will be dead after using one or two.

  34. avatarensitu says:

    I have tried 14 rigs but they are all way too small for my chest size, I won’t even mention the size of my guns :)

    • avatarAlphaGeek says:

      You wore 14 chest rigs all at the same time? There’s your problem right there. Try wearing just ONE and adjusting the straps.

      In all seriousness, there are shops that make custom rigs. There’s a link to one in these comments — search for “762″.

  35. avatarblehtastic says:

    I’m getting there… Geeze…

    Way to point out holes in my preps.

  36. avatarjmk says:

    primary is a Warhog “war” belt from US Grunt Gear. cut like a backpack belt – very comfortable for long periods even when fully loaded w/pistol, mags, water & med pouch.

    have a tactical tailor split mav that i don’t use very often, but is good for classes where a higher mag count on the line is required (running 7 – 12 rounds per mag to force mag changes).

  37. avatarJoe Grine says:

    I collect military surplus (for reasons I can’t quite identify… mostly nostalga I suppose) but I have rigs that go back to Vietnam-era H-harness, to 1980s era ALICE LBE, to more modern Army issue harnesses, and a Blackhawk Chest rig.

    • avatarCharlie says:

      Me too. No idea why, but I’ve got a friend who collects resonator guitars, so I’m not the odd man out (lol). Vietnam era H and Y rig is where I started, but LC gear is bulky and does’t really work for me.

      Charlie

  38. avatarCharlie says:

    Molle LBE vest with mag, radio, and other pouches. It’s the best way I’ve found to pissant your gear and retain mobility, and when I’m carrying a rifle most people don’t notice the vest.

    Charlie

  39. avatarJoseph says:

    I’ve got three chest rigs. One Black, one OD GRN and one FDE. I’ve got two sets of Blackhawk SOLAG HD’s to match each and three assault packs. =D

    • avatarCurzen says:

      One Black, one OD GRN and one FDE

      I’m a little tired of those color choices to be honest. Just offer me stuff in a neutral grey.

    • avatarBarstow Cowboy says:

      Only the police and the military need to have assault packs. You can’t use an assault pack for hunting.

  40. avatarJack_Samuelson says:

    Well, I got a Ka-Bar for Christmas, and I just caught myself on Google looking for a shoulder sheathe for it; so I would say I am getting closer to the vest rig end of te spectrum.

    By the way, does anyone here know of a good shoulder rig for a full size Ka-Bar?

  41. avatarDisThunder says:

    I do have a good ol’ coyote tan plate carrier I’ve had for years. it’s got mag pouches and a medipack on it, but keeping it light means it could be hidden under a jacket- so I’ve left the hydration pack and shoulder-mounted blade holsters to the COD crowd.
    As for why own one? Well, at the time, it was a ridiculously cheap piece of body armor. And needless to say, it’s one of those things that when the day comes you actually need it, you probably won’t be able to order one from OPSGear.

  42. avatarHal says:

    Padded belt with pistol, two pistol mags and two rifle mags. Plate carrier with universal mag pouches to fit either 7.62 or 5.56. Plate carrier pouches used to feed belt pouches. SAPI plates. Carrier convertable for use without plates. Assorted flashlights, TCCC kit. Winkler Sayok tomahawk. Kingdom armory grailing.

  43. avatarmike2588 says:

    I want a chest rig to hold beer in the mag pouches.

  44. avatarGreg says:

    If you have an AR why wouldn’t you have a way to carry the ammo for it. And while you’re at why don’t you have something to illuminate the area and something to treat GSWs? As far as I know, the chest rig is the only way to carry all this stuff. If you’re using a AR for defense, then someone else maybe shooting at you so why won’t you have body armor? This is just logical conculsions.

  45. avatarO.E says:

    I use a belt with magazine pouches and holster, that and an undressed IOJ Level 3 soft armor chest rig. The belt I can grab and wear regardless of my clothing underneath where as the chest rig requires more time to don and doff yet if things are hairy enough then valuable minutes in preparation can equate to many good years of life down the line.

  46. avatarTim says:

    I have a chest rig. It’s outfitted for magazines (rifle and handgun) and has a holster on it. I freely admit it’s mostly a range toy for all day shooting events. Is that really so wrong?

    I have my own “practical” method of discretely carrying what I need if I have to.

  47. avatarPeter says:

    Not HSLD enough to run a chest rig, I kind of walk an old vest style set up. This allows me to carry a hydration bladder in the back, an absolute necessity in the summer!

  48. avatarPro-Liberty says:

    I have two load-bearing systems: (1) an old US Army LBE belt-and-suspenders rig with a couple of ammo pouches on it (carries 120 rounds), and (2) an enhanced load-bearing vest with two extra ammo pouches on the attached pistol belt (carries a total of 240 rounds).

    I don’t wear these out shooting because I don’t want to freak people out on the public land where I shoot, and I also don’t do the short of run-and-gun shooting drills that would require that many rounds of ammo in quick succession.

  49. avatarflyfisher says:

    My chest rig is loaded with small steel hooks, shiny fuzzy fake bugs, worms, and a set of longnose pliers.

  50. avatarg says:

    These things sort of spring up their own… here I was looking for some pouches to hold AK rifle mags… then you find out you can get an affordable, light-weight plate carrier for same price as a “battle belt”… then you find that you can also carry a medical pouch, multitool, and flashlight on it.

    My light weight plate carrier probably isn’t military spec (it’s made by Condor in China), but I liked the price and the fact it’s compact enough that in the event of “bad stuff”, it could easily be concealed underneath a big sweatshirt or coat.

  51. avatarDan says:

    I’ve a very small PALS chest right, but I use it for my navigation tools, whistle, and note-taking stuff for search and rescue. I’ve always found belt mounted mags easier to access than chest mounted, and if i need more ammo than I can load on my belt, I’m in deep trouble either way. YMMV.

  52. avatarLance says:

    No I dislike chest rigs and MOLLE gear especially. But I keep my trusty ALICE gear near me always. Prefer ALICE any way its very rugged and reliable.

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