FN Herstal

Archive for January, 2011

Air Guitar ala Afghanistan

Sunday, January 30th, 2011

Yet another reason to be thankful the Canadians are a part of the Coalition. Captured in Panjwai, Afghanistan.

Cat Sh!t One: The Animated Series English Dub On Youtube

Sunday, January 30th, 2011

We’ve mentioned Cat Shit One before. Starting February 5th, Youtube will be hosting a free viewing of the first episode of Cat Shit One: The Animated Series for a period of just two weeks. A series by manga artist Motofumi Kobayashi, the original story took place in an alternate reality version of the Vietnam war where all the humans were replaced by animals. Americans are represented as rabbits simply because the Japanese word for rabbit in romaji is Usagi which leads to: USA G.I. The Blu-ray and DVD editions of the series will also be available on Amazon.com the same day as the episode appears on Youtube.

Check out ida-entertainment.com for the vid when it comes out.

Hat tip to TacticalFanboy.com.

CTC Defense’s Modular Vertical Foregrip Available

Saturday, January 29th, 2011

The Modular Vertical Foregrip for AR15-style rifles (MVF-515) is now available from Crimson Trace. There are numerous vertical foregrips on the market but what makes this one unique is that permits complete change-out of the laser, allowing you to switch the module between red and green lasers. On the opposite side of the laser the MVF contains a 150/200 Lumen LED white light module with selectable light intensity.

www.crimsontrace.com

Corps Strength – Neck Strength

Saturday, January 29th, 2011

As all us who have ever served in the military know, the physical fitness requirements that we have for our jobs are very different from what a weekend, or even a professional athlete requires. In fact, I could write another book on this subject. But, to make a long story short, today I want to focus on one important area that is probably the least exercised body part we have, our neck. Obviously your neck is important to help you support heavy protective gear like a Kevlar helmet, but another thing to think about is how important your neck is to help absorb impacts to your head. Football players and wrestlers know this and consequently they train their necks. However, they don’t have to worry about TBI (Traumatic Brain Injury) from IEDs. I’m not saying that a super strong neck will totally protect you from the concussion of an Improvised Explosive Device, but I think it can help. A few years back when I was stationed in New Orleans, some non-driving a-hole ran a red light and slammed into my truck while I was sitting at a stop light. Due to the point of impact, (right front corner) none of the air bags came out. I smacked my grape right into the windshield. The truck was totaled and I cracked the windshield. Even though I had a pretty good bruise on my forehead, I was uninjured. I didn’t even have a headache (I did have a serious headache later dealing with the insurance company). I can only credit many years of conditioning my neck, and a very hard “Jarhead” Haha. A strong neck is also important in helping keeping your back healthy. The bottom line is you need to condition your neck. This can be done with a neck harness, a neck machine or neck bridges. In my book I outline many ways to condition your neck and I work mine at least twice a week. Just go slow and easy when training your neck or you’ll end up injuring yourself.

Good luck and Semper Fi, MGunz
corpsstrength.com

So, What Is This ICS Technology You Speak Of?

Saturday, January 29th, 2011

We’ve mentioned Bates Footwear’s Individual Comfort System (ICS) technology in the past but this video taken by TacticalGear.com at SHOT Show gives you a great idea of what it all means. Thanks guys!

www.batesfootwear.com
www.tacticalgear.com

Magnum Recaps SHOT Show

Saturday, January 29th, 2011

Magnum USA just released this cool video of their SHOT Show experience. Watch this space for some interesting news on Magnum products.

www.magnumboots.com

Bluewater Defense Announces New VP of Military and Commercial Sourcing and Product Development

Friday, January 28th, 2011

Bluewater Defense, Inc. has announced the appointment of Ms. Jennifer Boykin as the Vice President of Sourcing and Product Development. She was most recently the Military Programs Manager at New Balance, responsible for product costing, sourcing, supplier relations, product development, implementation and management of new products for the US Warfighter, including the successful implementation and delivery of the Marine Corps Physical Training Uniform. Prior to this position, she was a designer, sourcing and product development manager for numerous leading apparel companies, including Cartiers, Structure (a division of the Limited) and Andrea Gayle (a division of the Leslie Faye Co.).

“We are very pleased to have Jennifer as part of our team. She brings substantial military and commercial apparel manufacturing and sourcing experience to the company, helping us professionalize the front-end of our business. Jennifer prioritizes responding quickly to changing customer needs and her grasp of tactical equipment and uniform requirements is second to none,” said Eric Spackey, CEO of Bluewater Defense, Inc. “Jennifer has worked with our production team as a former customer and understands the importance of good communication, complete transparency and positive execution.’

In her new role at Bluewater Defense. Inc., Ms. Boykin will be responsible for leading the sourcing and development process on commercial and military programs, including managing and overseeing the supply-chain, planning, product development and small-run production.

Based in San Lorenzo, Puerto Rico, and with 1500 employees Bluewater Defense, Inc., currently produces Army Combat Uniforms, Gen III Level 7 Parka’s and Trousers, Improved Outer Tactical Vests, and All Weather Coats. In addition to the government contracts, Bluewater Defense is manufacturing numerous items under commercial contracts, including sleep systems, cold weather, and safety gear.

www.bluewaterdefense.com

AF Announces Adoption of OCP for Deployers

Friday, January 28th, 2011

Making good on their promise of 24 August, the Air Force has officially announced what was already happening. Personnel deploying to Operation Enduring Freedom will be issued clothing and equipment in the OEF Camouflage Pattern (OCP), commercially known as MultiCam. The Army had begun issuing OCP to its Afghanistan-bound forces last summer and included some Air Force deployers due to the nature of their mission such as Joint Terminal Attack Controllers which embed with Army maneuver forces.

In a USAF press release, Lt. Col. Shawna McGowan, the Air Force future programs branch chief made several statements regarding the fielding.

“At first, Airmen receiving the (Airman Battle System-Ground, or ABS-G) uniforms with mission responsibilities outside the wire in Afghanistan will have priority for the OCP.”

But the plan is for the OCP uniform to eventually become the only ground-combat uniform worn by Airmen in Afghanistan both inside and outside the wire, she said. This also will minimize the number of bags Airmen will carry into and out of the theater.

“The OCP uniform is scientifically developed to blend in with Afghanistan’s terrain, which will make our Airmen safer and more effective on the battlefield,” she said. “The new material is also flame resistant and lighter weight than either the ABS-G or the (Airman Battle Uniforms, or ABUs).”

The material also contains a bug repellant to protect our deployed Airmen, she added.

And, the colonel said, not only is this uniform better than its predecessors, but working jointly with the Army to use a tested uniform is the fiscally responsible thing to do.

“It’s not only a joint use of the best ground combat uniform available,” Colonel McGowan said, “it saves fiscal resources and also aligns with the National Defense Authorization Act language that encourages collaborative efforts between the services.”

Since the OCP is replacing the other uniforms, there also will be a savings that will come from not needing to store and supply both the ABS-G and ABU, she said.

So, reading this, I come away with the understanding that the Air Force will be purchasing OCP clothing and equipment from Army stocks and issuing them to Airmen who are deploying to OEF. However, it is interesting that Lt Col McGowan would claim that the OCP uniform is better than the ABS-G or that the Air Force will realize cost savings due to the fielding of OCP.

Since the entire Air Force is still going to use the ABU for all home station forces outside of Afghanistan and those deploying to a combat zone still require the ABS-G in the digital pattern, the Air Force will be adding a third uniform ensemble. Sounds like it will cost more to me. Want to truly save money Air Force? Dump the Digital Tiger Stripe pattern and adopt MultiCam across the board. One uniform for all regardless of location.

As for her assertion that the uniform is more effective. From a camouflage standpoint it most definitely is. The Army adopted OCP for use in Afghanistan for a reason. While Air Force Digital Tiger Stripe was not included in the Army’s camo testing regimen conducted in 2009 in Afghanistan, the colorway is based on UCP with Slate Blue as an additional fourth color. As a camouflage pattern it performs in a similar manner to UCP; abysmally. However, the ABS-G itself is actually a great system. The fabric used in the actual field uniform is the same as used in the Army’s A2CU and is lighter and more breathable than that used in the FR ACU. Additionally, the ABS-G is a total system that incorporates FR insulation layers. The Army’s Gen III ECWCS does not.

The article goes on to warn troops as well as units that they cannot purchase clothing and equipment in OCP.

“The only authorized OCP uniforms are those purchased and issued by Air Force Central Command,” Colonel McGowan said. “While some units are interested in procuring the OCP for training, future deployments and such, they won’t be authorized to do so because those orders would take away from supplies that are prioritized for the most at-risk deployers.”

She also discouraged individuals from purchasing their own uniforms as that could result in them receiving non-tested, non-compliant uniforms that ultimately could put lives at risk. With any new uniform, ‘knock-offs’ are readily available and Airmen need to use sound judgment and not spend personal funds on potentially non-compliant OCP assets, she said.

“Essentially, any unauthorized purchase of the OCP uniforms could result in putting Airmen at risk either on the front lines or at home,” the colonel said.

All good advice, except that it’s a bit melodramatic. Air Force elements were in MultiCam long before this decision by the Air Staff and will continue to do so in the future based on mission. They have had no trouble finding ample supplies of clothing and equipment. The real issue here is that the MultiCam version of the FR ACU which is referred to as the OCP uniform is simply not available commercially. However, ample stocks of alternative FR clothing items in MultiCam are freely available such as New Balance’s System 7. In fact, the Airman Battle Shirt is produced by vendor Massif. They also just so happen to manufacture the Army Combat Shirt in UCP as well as MultiCam and have recently introduced an entire line of commercially available certified FR MultiCam clothing. As for field equipment, pick a vendor and they are making it in MultiCam. Some of it is excellent and some of it is pure junk. Caveat Emptor.