FN Herstal

SOCOM Interested In Updating Rucksack Suite

Natick’s Program Manager Special Operations Forces has issued a Request For Information seeking vendors of Assault, Patrol and Recce Packs (they’ve already selected a Jungle Pack). Specifically, they are interested in information and sample materials for test and evaluation purposes of available Rucksacks with an internal or external frame that are capable of meeting the following Key Performance Parameters (KPP’s): 

Overall backpack systems will adhere to the following table:
Failure to meet a KPP will eliminate the product for further consideration.
**ASTM F2153-07 Standard test method for measurement of backpack volume will be used as the baseline. 

1. Volume 

Volume does not to include removable exterior pouches or top flap. Volume measurement will include internal main up to the spin drift sewn to main bag. Exterior permanent pouches (sewn on) will be measured and added to the total volume of rucksack. 

2. Weight 

Weight will include main pack with top flap (whether removable or not) and radio retention system. Weight will not include any removable pouches. 

3. Must be acceptable and interface with current body armor (BA) and plate carriers: CRYE AVS and Eagle MMAC 2012 and legacy load carriage systems (LCS). 

4. Environmental conditions cannot degrade the system to the extent that is cannot be used for its intended mission. 

a. Must withstand the effects of the full climatic range of operations. (-50F / +185F) 

b. Must be rot, mildew, salt water, UV light and petroleum, oils and lubricant (POL) resistant. 

c. Must have a shelf life of not less than five years prior to issue. 

5. Color choices should be consistent with current Body Armor Load Carriage Systems (AOR 1, AOR 2, Multi Cam, and Coyote). 

6. The Assault, Patrol and Recce Packs will provide for a removable radio retention system capable of being mounted high against the internal pack capable of holding a suite of SOF radios to include but not limited to the AN / PRC 117 (3.2 in H x 10.5 in W x 13.5 in D). 

There are numerous other requirements in the full RFI located here.  As of right now, there is no requirement that a vendor must offer all three solutions to participate but Natick wants your sample packs by 5 Jan 2016.  You can deliver up to two entries per category but the samples must be void of any logos or other branding.  SOCOM wants the best technical solution rather than a popularity contest.  

18 Responses to “SOCOM Interested In Updating Rucksack Suite”

  1. Brett says:

    SSD, just out of curiosity, is there any more information on the Molle-4000 ruck that Natick was working on? Weren’t they supposed to be issuing those in September?

  2. Mick says:

    SSD on jungle pack, last we heard, they were down to three finalists… did they finalize? Know anything about it?

  3. bulldog76 says:

    sounds like they want an alice pack ….. but thats just me

  4. Francis says:

    What happened to the MR SATL?

    • BS says:

      SATL is current SOCOM Assault Pack. SOCOM Patrol Pack is Granite Gear CHIEF Patrol and in Recce category – MR Tactiplane.

  5. Troy says:

    It is being fielded atBragg to a BCT this week.

  6. FormerActionGuy says:

    Recce pack 120 lbs suspended weight. Good luck to the GI Jane’s who want to play with the boys. LOL!

  7. 4xRanger says:

    I would like to see a company submit a ALICE Pack like design but with modern materials like a MALICE Pack made out of helium whisper with a adjustable titanium frame based on the MALICE Frame, after reading the ALICE Pack Article. If the Ranger Regiment is still using old ALICE Large Packs, with the H-harness they would love to get their hands on a lighter modern version. A classic all DOD branches could get behind, save money so the government wouldn’t have to keep almost shutting down!!

    • Jon Meyer says:

      That mountain ruck by Grey Ghost looks like a really nice ruck. It has the 1606 frame, which apparently is supposed to be a great frame. Though it only has 3168ci of total space. Seems like a solid modern version of the old Alice pack. Looks like SOCOM wants some really large bags.

  8. Bill says:

    Out of curiosity, why a shelf life limitation of 5 years? I’m still using packs that are older than a lot of your readers. Is this a loophole to permit early replacement and updating as new materials and technology comes on line?

  9. Darrel says:

    Any article whatsoever involving rucksacks will always have at least one delusional poster talking about ALICE packs like they are somehow the grail of load carriage. Consider pulling some cash out of your pocket and buy something that wasn’t invented forty years ago and you will realize how totally inferior the ALICE pack is in every possible way compared to more modern solutions. It has nothing to do with material advances or making it lighter, the simple fact is that the ALICE is little more than a big sack attached to a metal frame with subpar interior and exterior organization, inefficient load bearing capability and a design that strongly dictates what it can carry and how the contents can be organized.

    • z0phi3l says:

      As someone who had to actually use the old ALICE packs I don’t get some people’s obsession with it, it was not that good a pack in the 90’s still isn’t a good pack now, and let’s not get started on the horrid frame some also seem obsessed over, even then there were better jumpable alternatives and yet we didn’t take advantage of it

      • Jon Meyer says:

        While I did not like it either having used the large variation in OSUT, it is still 10x better than that abomination of a ruck sack known as the MOLLE II. I hated that ruck sack with a passion. I wish I had known about the 1606 frame while I was still in, I would have swapped that crap 1603 out for one.