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Photos by Matt Caballero

I like my tacticool gear. So I’m a big fan of Blue Force Gear; they produce top level combat equipment. And Blue Force Gear’s latest plate carrier — the PLATEminus V2 Plate Carrier — is tactical AF.

When it comes to combat gear every ounce makes a difference. Straight of the box I noticed that the small-sized PLATEminus V2 Plate Carrier is supermodel slim and extremely light. It weighs-in at just 12 ounces.

That’s down to the fact that the MOLLE compatible carrier’s fashioned from laser-cut ULTRAcomp laminate.

According to ULTRAcomp’s website, the material “combines the durability of a polymer based laminate with the benefits of a Cordura face fabric . . . creating a unique material resistant to tear, abrasion and water while reducing IR signature in a number of colors and camouflage patterns.”

The  carrier’s laser cut fabrication certainly makes the PLATEminus V2 look unique and futuristic. Equally important, it’s easy to attach pouches. I could reach my hand under the laser cut molle matrix — something you cannot do with a regular plate carrier.

Using the extra elastic pouches in the cummerbund, you can easily stash medical supplies and magazines. The cummerbund can also hold side plates (the original PLATEminus lacked that feature.) The carrier’s inside boasts fully enclosed plate pockets. Bonus! They’re moisture wicking, which also helps to reduce weight.

The carrier is easy and quick to fit; the shoulder straps and cumberbund are held by Velcro.

To test the PLATEminus V2’s durability, functionality and comfort, I attached the Blue Force Gear 10 SPEED M4 Mag pouches and pistol mag pouches and wore the carrier all day and night while teaching my Night Combat Rifle Course.

During the course, the carrier felt light and breathable even whilst schlepping three AR mags, two pistol mags and a ceramic plate on both sides. I had no issues with tearing and the plates remained firmly in place (jumping plates are uncomfortable and tiring).

I tried two different sets of plates in the carrier. The straps don’t attach directly on the edges of the plate pockets, they fasten a little more into the carrier. That makes it easy to swap plates generally, and different-sized plates specifically.

I really appreciated the ease of taking the PLATEminus V2 off and putting it back on. Gaining access or egress to a traditional plate carrier you have to lift a part of the front panel to release the cummerbund. The PLATEminus V2 has a pull tab on the side MOLLE. This separates it from the elastic part that attaches to the back (and can be detached completely).

The PLATEminus V2 plate carrier doesn’t sacrifice comfort for efficiency. It’s tough-as-nails yet light and ergonomic. My only concern: it lacks a rescue strap on the back end, which can be vital for casualty rescue.

SPECIFICATIONS: Blue Force Gear PLATEminus V2 Plate Carrier

Colors: Black, Coyote Brown, OD Green, Multicam, Wolf
Sizes: Small – 8.75″ wide x 11.75″ high x 1.25″ thick – For Small SAPI / ESAPI plates
Medium 9.5″ wide x 12.5″ high x 1.25″ thick -For Medium SAPI / ESAPI plates
Large 10.25″ wide x 13.25″ high x 1.25″ thick – For large SAPI / ESAPI plates
Extra Large 11″ wide x 14″ high x 1.25″ thick – For Extra Large SAPI / ESAPI plates
Materials: MOLLEminus™ Technology. Constructed from ULTRAcomp™
MSRP Carrier: $350
MSRP Mag pouches: Ten-Speed Double Pistol Mag Pouch $30. Ten-Speed Triple M4 Mag Pouch $49

Ratings (out of five stars):

Ease of Use * * * * *
Fast to wear and use with the Velcro-enabled cummerbund. MOLLEminus™ technology makes it easy to attach and detach pouches to the carrier.

Comfort * * * * *
Extremely light and comfortable thanks to Blue Force Gear proprietary ULTRAcomp™ material and MOLLEminus™ systems.

Design * * * * *
Very modern and innovative design, allowing for a slimmer carrier that weighs less than regular Cordura made carriers.

Value * * *
But unless your job is paying for it or you wear your carrier for hours at a time, there are other great products on the market for a lower price.

Overall * * * * *
Great features, well-built, all-day and light. The most comfortable and efficient carrier I’ve ever worn. Pricey, but the best always is.

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  1. Thanks Ron, I appreciate plate carrier reviews. Maybe durability should be a rate aspect also. From the review it is also unclear to me how many hours/days you have wearing it. (maybe I just missed that though)

    • Yeah, that doesn’t sound like much of a plus. I suppose it sounds good to people that don’t think about it. And even if it did make you chest nearly invisible to thermal imagers the rest of you would still be glowing unless it too was bundled up toasty warm.

  2. You’re about an 1.5″ to 2″ too low with the plates. The plate should sit right below the collarbone notch. Fwiw.

  3. So what type of material is touching you?
    I recently bought a different brand to wear while teaching classes. The soft, breathable padding on the backside was one of the selling points for me.
    Well, that and stopping rifle rounds.

  4. So other then being tacticool what’s the point? Even in SHFT if rounds are bouncing off your chest your in a bad way

  5. It’s too much $. I use and recommend a Coyote Brown Grey Ghost Gear Minimalist Plate Carier with a matching Blue Force Geat 10 Speed M4 three Mag Pouch. About $160 for the whole rig minus the plates. I can’t say enough good things about this simple but functional setup.

  6. Too much $, I’d recommend a cheaper setup. I wear a Coyote Brown colored Grey Ghost Gerar Miniimalist Plate Carrier with matching colored Blue Force Gear 10 Spped M4 3 Mag Pouch (same magazine holder you used in the review). It’s simple, comfortable, and about $160 for the whole rig minus the plates. With only three magazines onboard I use three 40 round Magpul Pmags and a Benchmade SOCP Dagger centerline with most of the sheath hidden behind the middle rifle magazine.


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