We recently had the opportunity to check out two of Tactical Assault Gear’s armor carriers, the Vanguard and Integrated Hybrid Vest. Both are very well made and worth taking a look at if you’re in the market. We’re particularly impressed that TAG went the extra mile and licensed the skeletal cummerbund from Crye Precision.
TAG’s Vanguard is a lightweight plate carrier designed to work with any set of hard armor plates and soft armor backers. It is constructed of 500D Cordura nylon, and features spacer mesh on the inside for breathability and comfort. The shoulder straps are padded, and which have nylon and elastic webbing for mounting and routing tourniquets, hydration tubes, radio antennas, and more. The Vanguard’s front panel features a sewn-in triple magazine carrier which is sized to fit 5.56mm, 7.62×39, and 7.62×51 magazines, as well as integrated PALS webbing and Velcro loop panel. The rear of the carrier also features integrated PALS webbing and Velcro loop panel, and a drag handle which can be stowed when not in use.
Additionally, the Vanguard comes with a standard Cummerbund system, although it can be exchanged for the Skeletal Cummerbund System which TAG licensed from Crye Precision; both cummerbund systems are attached to the carrier using the G Hook attachment system.
The Vanguard is an armor carrier with quality materials and solid construction. The armor plates fit snug and secure within the plate pockets, and the spacer mesh adds some much appreciated comfort to the carrier. The kangaroo-style magazine front pouch is a nice addition, and the volume of PALS webbing throughout the carrier insures the wearer will be able to customize their carrier to virtually any necessary specification. If you’re looking for a solid carrier that does more than just carry plates, than the Vanguard is a great choice.
Like the Vanguard, The Integrated Hybrid Vest is designed to work with any set of hard armor plates and soft armor backers. It is also made of 500D Cordura nylon with spacer mesh on the inside of the carrier for breathability and comfort. Unlike the Vanguard, however, the IHV’s front panel is removable, and TAG offers multiple mission-specific panel configurations which allow the user to change their loadout as required.
The IHV comes standard with the Skeletal Cummerbund System, licensed from Crye Precision, which is adjustable using the G Hook attachment system. It also features padded and adjustable shoulder straps, which have nylon and elastic webbing for mounting and routing tourniquets, hydration tubes, radio antennas, and more. The front and back of the IHV has PALS webbing and Velcro loop panel, and the rear features a drag handle.
The armor pockets on the IHV are closed with a zipper, and feature a Velcro retention strap.
You can tell that a lot of thought and care went into the development of the Integrated Hybrid Vest. It utilizes high quality materials in its construction, and everything is solidly built. The G Hook adjustment system is quick and painless to use, and although we didn’t have a chance to try out the swappable panel system, in theory it’s a great idea for quickly altering the carrier for different mission profiles. Add in the additional PALS webbing, the padded shoulder straps, and the spacer mesh, and you have a great carrier that will serve well in almost any situation.