Tactical Tailor

USSOCOM Interested in Updating Releasable Maritime Body Armor Vests and Maritime Load Carriage System

PM-Special Operations Forces Survival, Support and Equipment Systems (PM-SOF SSES) issued a Sources Sought Notice requesting samples of two different MBAV configurations (Maritime Operations (MAROPS) and Land Warfare variants), and all the associated MLCS pockets, pouches, and accessories necessary for combat across the spectrum of operations.

The following limited pockets and pouches are requested for the samples submitted with each vest:
a. 3- double-stacked M4 pouches
b. 1- PRC 148 pouch (152 capable)
c. 2- smoke grenade pouches
d. 1- 7.62mm 100 round pouch
e. Small utility pouch (NVG’s, E&R, etc.)
f. 1- double Sig Sauer 9mm pouch
g. Low profile admin pouch

The intent is to choose a single vendor to provide all body armor vest and load carriage components. PM SOF-SESS reserves the right to choose multiple vendors. Vendors may submit more than one version of the MBAV, but not more than three.

The MBAV candidates must be interoperable with Generation IV and V SPEAR Body Armor Plates. Now get this, while the pouches have to attach securely to the carrier and backwards compatible with existing SPEAR items, the Soirces Sought Notice does not specify MOLLE or PALS.  That opens up some interesting possibilities.  Finally, this is a maritime requirement so naturally, the carrier will need to incorporate flotation. 

MBAVs must integrate with a low profile, integrated modular floatation system with an easy to install and removable bladder capable of providing no less than 70 lb. of positive buoyancy when inflated on the surface and 40 lbs. at 1 ATM. Modular floatation sub-component shall not reduce or minimally reduce area available for MLCS accessory attachment. Bladders and floatation capability must be easily removable for land operations.

Interstingly, they state that the land variant vest will only be pursued if it provides a substantial gain in capabilities over the currently issued vest. However, wouldn’t it be great if both variants were similar in design and operation?

Interested parties have until 20 August, 2015 to submit their entries.

* Of General Interest To SSD Readers, This Is A Full List of MLCS Components
M-4 Single Mag Pouch, 2 Mags per pouch
M-4 Single Pouch, 3 Mags Per Pouch, Maritime
M-4 Double Pouch/ 2 Mags per Pouch, Maritime
M-4 Triple Pouch, 2 Mags per Pouch, Maritime
M-4 Single Pouch, 1 Mag Per Pouch w/ Kydex
M-4 Single Pouch, 3 Mags Per Pouch
M-9 Single Mag Pouch with Kydex Insert
M-9 Single Mag Pouch, Flat v.2
M60 Ammo Pouch (100RD) w/DET Top Maritime
40 MM Grenade Pouch-Double
40 MM Grenade Pouch, Triple
100oz Fluid Carrier Pouch (NOTE: Carrier only. Not a system.)
200RD Saw Pouch Maritime
Assaulter’s Armband
Beaver Tail Assault Pack
Canteen/General Purpose Pouch Maritime
Charge Pouch w/ Anti-static
Deployment Bag-Small (1000D Khaki and Ranger Green)
Fore Trek GPS Pouch Wrist/Chest
Frag Grenade Pouch-Single Maritime
GRG Chest Pouch
Low Profile Special Purpose Chest Rig v.2
MOLLE Interface for Belt
Multi-Purpose Chest Rig v.2
Operator Gun Belt Pad – Sized Item – SMALL v.2
Operator Gun Belt Pad – Sized Item – MED v.2
Operator Gun Belt Pad – Sized Item – LARGE v.2
Operator Gun Belt Pad – Sized Item – XL v.2
Protective Insert for Night Vision
Radio Pocket (MBITR) Maritime
Radio Pocket (MBITR) w/ 5590 Pouch v.2
Roller bag, Small v.2 (1000D Khaki and Ranger Green)
Shock Tube Pouch v.2
Shotgun, 24 Shell Ammo Pouch v.2
Slung Weapon Belt Catch, (Gun Retainer) v.2
Smoke Grenade Pouch-Single v.2
SOF Medical Pouch v.2
Strip Charge Pouch, Single
Utility Pouch v.2

2 Responses to “USSOCOM Interested in Updating Releasable Maritime Body Armor Vests and Maritime Load Carriage System”

  1. Stephen says:

    I think First Spear will pull this one off, who better? Eagle Industries drive to mfg gear for just mil/le (mostly made in Dominica at that) might have to be re thought if they lose these contracts!

    • Lasse says:

      I think you can expect most serious brands to submit their fitting items into this as long as they have a PFD solution. Most of these PFD companies (PECI and Mustang Survival come to my mind) are probably very interested in having their products in the winning bid, so I don’t see why FS is the only option even thought they do have floaties in some of their non-MBAV cut carriers.

      Just from a recent photo I saw, I wouldn’t be surprised if Crye also has a PFD solution that they could submit to this.