A Chest Rig/Armor Interface Kit went out today. It was rigged up for another Mayflower Research & Consulting Chest Rig. The same customer also wanted the Eagle Industries Plate Carrier modified with the Drop In Strap Replacement. It’s unusual to actually have the chest rig in hand to work with, much less the armor system it’s to be mounted on.
The ‘Armor Interface was accomplished with no alteration to the host rig. Four PALS Shock Cord Anchors were fabricated to mate with the buckles on the chest rig and vertical attachment was accomplished via ITW Surface Mount Buckles. It was all low profile and simple. One of the nice things about this system is that it’s relatively easy to repair in the case of a part failure or break down in field conditions. If all else fails, the chest rig remains usable with the original harness it shipped with.
The Drop In Strap Replacement was requested to displace the original side straps on the Eagle Plate Carrier. The original straps were 1.5″ with side release buckles that required a rearward pulling motion to cinch tight. Tightening down the sides of any kind of a vest by pulling backwards from your sides is not fun. The Strap Replacement places the length adjusting ladderlock at the rear of the vest so that you pull forward to tighten down. It’s a better way. But the Strap Replacement offers a little more in the form of elastic tension. The more conventional version sheathes shock cord in tubular nylon but this example accomplishes the same with a section of PU-Products Rok Strap. The Rok Strap is basically a heavy duty, durable rubber band that lends itself well to this application. Although the 1.5″ buckle was replaced with a 1′ buckle on the front edges of the plate carrier, the original loops were left intact so that the customer could easily revert the plate carrier to it’s original configuration if desired. Sometimes when you try something new you don’t know whether or not it will work for you until you’ve used it and if the alterations to your gear are permanent, it makes the experience that much more painful.