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Archive for November, 2008

Navy to Test Digital Field Uniforms

Wednesday, November 12th, 2008

The Navy is fully aware that their new Navy Working Uniform (NWU) isn’t suited for every environment and have from the beginning of the program promised to field a combat uniform for their ground forces who find themselves primarily in the Naval Special Warfare Command and the Naval Expeditionary Combat Command. On November 5th Navy BUPERS officials announced that they would test a minimum of two variants of woodland and desert camouflage patterned NWUs.

Rumor has long been that one variant would be based on the Marine Pattern (MARPAT) without the Eagle Globe and Anchor and that a second possible pattern for test is a pattern developed for use by SOF.

Although the Navy intends to procure both woodland and desert variants of the new pattern, they have expressed an interest in uniforms already in use by the other services in order to speed up fielding. For example, many Individual Augmentees have been using Army ACUs in the CENTCOM AOR. If this course of action were selected, the Navy would field a different style of field uniform than the Marine Combat Utility Uniform-based NWU. However, it is important to note that no matter what pattern or uniform style is selected it will not preclude Sailors from having to possess NWUs.

3M MPro 110 Pocket Projector Update

Wednesday, November 12th, 2008

Gizmodo has published photos and some additional background info on the battery operated MPro 110 we discussed back in September. It is pocket sized and while gear heads will complain about the MPro 110’s low resolution, for a guy deployed to a forward location it can pull double duty as an MWR projector and small unit briefing aid.

Blue Force Gear Update

Tuesday, November 11th, 2008

Blue Force Gear has got a lot going on. Recently Stephen Hilliard came on board and brought with him his design expertise in nylon gear. Already available are two unique products; the Tourniquet NOW! Strap and the Ten-Speed Mag Pouch.

Blue Force Gear Tourniquet NOW! Strap
Designer Stephen Hilliard designed the Tourniquet NOW! Strap in order to replace the expedient rubber band system used to attach tourniquets to load carrying equipment. The strap is simple and folds the tourniquet at the ready. The Tourniquet NOW! Strap is available in Coyote Brown, Foliage Green, and Camo Green.

Blue Force Gear Ten-Speed Mag Pouch
BFG developed the Ten-Speed Mag Pouch after owner Ashley Burnsed saw a bicyclist with his water bottle in an elastic carrier. Weighing in at three ounces, and most of that is BFG’s new PALS-compatible attachment system, the pouch’s open topped body is manufactured from elastic and designed to provide positive retention of magazines or other items such as flash bangs. It is truly a specialist item that closes flat when not in use. Current variants are available with a dark olive green body edged in Multicam.

In addition to those tactical nylon accessories, the gang at Blue Force Gear has several other products lined up for release over the next couple of months.

Finally, Blue Force Gear is expanding their relationship with Larry Vickers beyond just slings and introducing a line of 1911 parts called Vickers 1911 gear. Although not yet available for sale on the site, a Hammer, Sear, and Disconnector kit should be up by the end of the week in both standard and slotted styles.

For more information contact Blue Force Gear.

Photos from Blue force Gear.

Outdoor Research Modular Glove System

Monday, November 10th, 2008

USSOCOM has awarded Outdoor Research, Inc. (OR), a $54 million, five-year contract to manufacture the Outdoor Research Generation II Modular Glove System for U.S. Special Operations Forces (SOF). What is important about this announcement is that it is for the second generation glove system. In 2001 OR was also awarded a Small Business Innovative Research (SBIR) grant to develop the original modular glove system. Although a full contract was never awarded for full procurement due to competing priorities for dollars, the handwear developed under the SBIR was purchased with unit O&M dollars. Additionally, the research yielded excellent results and brought OR’s military and commercial lines further forward. This latest generation of handwear is FR and offered in brown rather then the black of the earlier family of gloves. The FR fabrics are offered in conjunction with Massif.

The system consists of five types of compatible handwear: a contact glove, a flame resistant combat glove, an intermediate waterproof glove, an extreme cold weather waterproof glove, and extreme cold weather waterproof mitt. Each set of gloves is Berry compliant and can be worn alone or in conjunction with other pieces in the system. I had an opportunity to look at the individual pieces at Outdoor Retailer and am very impressed. The gloves are for the most part refinements of military gloves they have been producing for the last couple of years. I have been using OR gloves for over ten years and these are the best products they have ever developed.

I think mountaineering legend Mark Twight sums it up best. “Using modern materials and their up-all-night ingenuity, the designers worked closely with military users to develop the Modular Glove System,” said Mark Twight, elite alpinist. “For over 20 years, OR has been testing handwear in the harshest environments on earth. No company is better positioned to build gloves for the U.S. Special Operations Forces.”

For more information visit Outdoor Research. The SOCOM Gen II Modular Glove System is available for purchase from ADS.

Outdoor Research Modular Glove System

Outdoor Research Modular Glove System, Generation II: Firebrand Mitt (top left), Firebrand Glove (top right), Poseidon Glove (bottom left), Overlord Shorty (bottom center), Hurricane Glove (bottom right).

Photo courtesy of Outdoor Research.

Contacting Soldier Systems Daily

Monday, November 10th, 2008

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EOTAC Clothing Update

Sunday, November 9th, 2008


I recently received a package of EOTAC’s new clothing. As many of you probably already know, the folks at EOTAC had previously designed and marketed clothing for another brand and while they still share some similarities (as do most of that market), there are some glaring differences. The most obvious is fit, and EOTAC has gotten it right. As soon as I slipped the pants on I noticed how much better the fit was from even the preliminary prototypes I had tried on over the summer.

EOTAC Tacti-Fit

The key to this change is their new proprietary Tact-Fit system. Details are still under wraps but from what I have gathered, EOTAC has taken the time to refine their fit based on anthromorphic data collected from American men at arms.

Additionally, EOTAC has introduced new fabrics and has tended to many of the small details they were unable to fix due to an obsession on the bottom line by their previous partners. Some examples of EOTAC’s improvements include superior color matching, correcting the placement of the knee pad pockets, and additional stitching on the trouser line. For the Field Jacket, the material has been improved and the cuff closure has been drastically improved from the variant they developed for a competitor. The entire line has been modified and enhanced and you will see more info over the next few weeks.

EOTAC’s ordering system is active. You can check out the clothing and order at www.eotac.com.

Tactical Impact

Sunday, November 9th, 2008

Hosted by world renown tactical trainers Larry Vickers and Aaron Roberts, both former Army Special Operations Soldiers, Tactical Impact examines real life tactical problems and the arms, accessories, and tactics required to prevail. And yes, they even wear Multicam.

The show is featured on The Sportsman Channel (TSC), Fox Sports Net South, Wild TV and Pursuit networks. Check local listing for channel and time.

The show’s website can be found at www.tacticalimpact.tv

Dutch Seek New Camo Pattern

Saturday, November 8th, 2008

In the Royal Netherlands Marine Corps journal, “Qua Patet Orbis“,

Dutch Camo Candidate Patterns

The five patterns at the bottom of the photo are (left to right): random color distribution (fractal), desert, woodland, urban and universal.

In all, eight patterns are being considered: one being universal, two patterns are “multicamouflage patterns” for use in more than one environment, and the last five are terrain specific patterns.

One of the most significant points brought up in the article is that with the adoption of the new pattern (or patterns) the Dutch military would cease to use American and British patterns.

The evaluation is considering three important factors:
– The effectiveness of the camouflage
– The psychological effect on the wearer. How does the wearer feel about the pattern and do they trust its ability to conceal the wearer?
– The new pattern must be unique and worn only by the Dutch