Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Cheap (but quality) MOLLE gear........

I know there's other folks out there that enjoy using MOLLE packs for EDC and camping/hiking. For those not in the know, it stands for MOdular Lightweight Load-bearing Equipment (pronounced Molly). As you may have guessed, it was designed by the US military and now it's used by other LE agencies to replace the old load bearing systems (read: ALICE packs and vests). It is great for hauling all sorts of gear, clothing, water, food, ammo, etc. around and looks good too.
So here's an honest review of my recent MOLLE purchase:

About a month ago I was emailed an electronic gift card totaling 25.00, for use on Amazon.com for any purchase I may wish to make. This email was sent to the four or five of us from our floor who won the college "Spy Game." (People are starting to get sick of us winning all the games, let me tell you).

Anyhow, I decided to spend it blindly on a new daypack, which I didn't know a whole lot about. I'd been reading about all sorts of cool things on the USN, but figured I wouldn't be purchasing anything for a while (I'd recently bought a sweet but rather expensive tactical flashlight--more on that in the next post).

The pack in question was listed as costing around 50.00, for the size I wanted. I ordered it, using the full gift card amount plus some more from my account....and waited.....and waited....and waited....and waited.....and finally here arrives a package via Fedex, containing---the WRONG pack. I broke open the box and tore off the plastic covering, only to find that the company who had sold me this pack was either (a) Guilty of false advertising, or (b). Simply guilty of an honest mistake in the shipping dept. (Lord knows I understand that). So I shot them an email and they told me to send it back and they would give me the right one.

So I waited....and waited....and waited.....and FINALLY there came a package in the mail, this time a bigger box. I opened this one and was stunned--THIS was the pack I had been waiting so long for!

Here's a few pics.....

This is a view of my new pack, all togged up and ready for an outing!



Even the bottom of this pack is covered in MOLLE webbing. I can foresee this being useful for attaching tents/tarps/mummy bags for ultralighter weekend outings.......




Here's a view of the front with a pair of cheapie aluminum keyring carabiners that I've attached to some lashing loops.....LOOK at all that MOLLE!:)



Here's a pic of the compression-molded back panel and padded shoulder straps--which, by the way, include heavy steel D-ring attachment points, load lifter straps, and a sternum strap.


A view of the bottom front outside pocket, which is lined with heavy, wide webbing and TONS of velcro for sticking little pouches and velcro-equipped gear to the inside........




A close up of the stitching (pretty heavy-duty for a 50.00 pack).



A radio antenna slot; there's three of these .




And there's this sweet "slot" secured with velcro that runs the whole length and width of the pack (I guess for a framesheet or something).




An angled aerial view.....


Bottom line? I love this pack--for a 50.00 pack, you can't beat it. The nylon is super heavy duty, and so is the webbing. The only thing I don't like about this pack is the relative lack of organizational pockets. For it to be a GREAT daypack (as in, favorite college EDC-type pack) I'd want it to have pen slots, more pockets and dividers, etc). But for such a cheap price I will NOT complain. This is THE pack that I will choose to take on vacations, camping trips, even to college! I may even purchase another for use as a BOB (bug-out-bag).

SPECS:
Total Cubic Inches: 2280
Total price (with shipping): 60.00-65.00
Hydration Compatible?: YES.
Total rating (overall): Four and a Half Stars.
Available From: Pro-Line Trading Corporation, on Amazon.com (among other sites).

I, Berserker, recommend this pack for everyday use!

PMZ

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