Companies currently producing belt systems built around the Austrialpin Cobra buckle have set such a high standard in quality of workmanship and design that there is almost no point in entering the market. There are only so many ways to build a belt and unless you have something new to add, it’s best to stay out of the arena. Down Range Gear has been approached by customers on numerous occasions to build these belts and has regularly referred them to those better established in the field, such as Jones Tactical.
For the few that haven’t heard about this piece of hardware, Austrialpin Cobra buckles are mountaineering grade safety buckles with an innovative quick release system. Not only are they practical for heavy duty load bearing use but they also make sharp looking, functional belt buckles.
Down Range Gear was recently approached by a customer for a non cash transaction in exchange for a 1.5″ belt system similar to what is offered by the aforementioned Jones Tactical. Plagiarizing an existing design for compensation is a practice Down Range Gear will not engage in. Using the opportunity to add something new or do something in a way that hasn’t been done is an entirely different matter.
Beginning with the customer’s specification for a 1.5″ wide belt, a buckle of matching width was obtained. For those interested in obtaining Austrialpin Cobra buckles, Jones Tactical is a recommended source. The 1.5″ Cobra buckle is only slotted to accept 1″ webbing, which was no obstacle when slotting the female end into the belt; the male end with the adjustment bar, however, would have to feed 1″ webbing. The body of the belt sandwiches a length of 1/16″ HDPE between two layers of 17337 nylon webbing. This provides excellent structural support that will not roll under load and is both light and thin. The 1″ webbing fed through the adjusting buckle at the end of the belt is neatly slotted into a split in the webbing about 5″ before the end and locked down with a velcro strip to secure the excess.
At this time, this design is a one off, custom built piece and there are no plans to offer it as a regular, production item. Those interested in well made, custom built Cobra belt systems are highly encouraged to visit the Jones Tactical website.