Review Posted: Viktos Range Trainer Waterproof Shell

The Range Trainer Waterproof Shell (RTWS) is a four-way stretch chassis made by Viktosfrom a 100% Polyester outer shell that is waterproof, and provides for breathability of the body’s upper torso and mitigation of the wind or elements.

Review Posted: Spiritus Micro Fight Chasis Mk4: Modular is King

Designed as a modular chest placard, the Micro Fight Chassis Mk4 by Spiritus Systems is an integral part that interchanges between the company’s various nylon products. 

Review Posted: Streamlight Sidewinder Stalk: The Little Light with a Long Neck

The Stalk is a variable helmet mount illumination device that provides adequate light for the tactical environment without becoming a hinderance.

Review Posted: AFAK: Medical Essentials Close at Hand

Intended as a compact and low-profile aid kit, the Aptus First Aid Kit (AFAK) is a two-part, removable sleeve by Aptus Design Group that allows ambidextrous access to life-saving medical interventions when seconds matter. 

Review Published: HRT Maximus Placard: Everything You Need In One Place

Released in 2019, the Maximus Placard by HRT Tactical is intended as a full-mission placard for the company’s RAC and HRAC plate carriers.

Review Posted: HRT HRAC Carrier: Built for Doing the Work

Designed as a professional, multi-use plate carrier, the High Risk Adaptable Carrier (HRAC) by HRT Tactical offers a platform made from 500D Cordura nylon, on which the end-user can configure based on their individual mission and needs using HRT’s proprietary pouches and accessories.

Review Posted: The Syncron Holster: Keep It Tight and Ready

Released in mid-February 2022, the Syncron Holster by G-Code blends the company’s legendary quality in kydex holster manufacturing with a new, flexible retention system that provides reduced sidearm profiles.

Review Posted: ADM Optic Mounts: Solid and Functional

Using solid 6061 T6 aluminum, American Defense Manufacturing offers several different mount styles for rifle optics to include the Recon and Delta versions.

Review Posted: Streamlight Wedge: The Pocket Torch That Doesn’t Burn

Made for the everyday carry, the Wedge by Streamlight offers users the ability to have a variable-powered handheld flashlight that is light enough to be easily carried in the pocket, bag, or to their gear.

Review Posted: Vortex Venom 5-25: Quality Glass for Every Long-Distance Shooter

Launched in early 2021, the Venom 5-25×56 FFP from Votex brings together basic and intuitive features shooters desire for moderate long-distance shooting, and rapid adjustment between variable distances to ensure consecutive shots on target. […]

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Hazard 4 Plan C: For Life, Range, or Field

Introduced in 2016 as a slim, modular backpack, the Plan C is part of the Hazard 4 line of dual-strap backpacks. Similar to the Patrol, the Plan C offers a functional pack that is ideal for range, field, or daily life and can be expanded through the attachment of additional pouches (sold separately).

Made from 1000D Cordura and treated for water repellence, the Plan C is a continuation of the Plan B, a single strap variant that allows for cross-shoulder carry. However, in the Plan C the 20” (H) x 8” (L) x 7” (D) pack has a dual strap design that allows for a more traditional carry.

Exterior

Starting at the front, the top of the Plan C features the same 6.7″ (H) x 3.1″ (W) x 2.4″ (D) type of thermoformed shell storage pocket as the Patrol, which is secured via dual zippers.

Below the thermoformed pocket is a 11.8″ (H) x 6.7″ (W) x 1.8″ (D) accessory pocket with several sleeve pockets for smaller, immediate need items. The exterior of the lower accessory pocket has laser-cut MOLLE and (female) hook-and-loop fields.

Both sides of the Plan C feature an extensive, top-to-bottom field of MOLLE webbing with a pocket on either side for a water bottle. Dual compression straps with slide release buckles help ensure the weight remains secure.

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On the top, the Plan C includes dual access ports into the main storage compartment for hydration bladders or communication wiring. A reinforced carry handle is on both the top and bottom for a variety of stowage configurations.

The backpanel has the same thermoformed material to create five padded panels configured to create airflow and improve breathability. The dual shoulder straps are anchored at the top of the backpanel using X-pattern reinforcement stitching. The shoulder straps include hook-and-loop retention tabs for hydration tubes, and webbing segments to either hang a variety of accessories or reposition the sternum strap. Behind the thermoformed backpanel is a 19.7″ (H) x 6.7″ (W) x 0.6″ (D) zipper-secured storage compartment for either a 3L hydration bladder, tablets or documents.

Interior

The main storage compartment is accessed via dual zippers, and includes mesh pockets on both the interior and support side of the pack. The interior sides are also lined with a velour material that allows the internal divider (with (male) hook-and-loop panels) to be adjusted based on the user’s needs at the time.

Specifications:

  • 1000D Cordura
  • YKK zippers with paracord pull tabs
  • Thermoformed storage pocket

The Plan C is available in either Coyote (featured) or Black.

Product Evaluation Scores:

  • CostGood (4/5): At $176.65 the Plan C is intended to be a moderate-sized, modular backpack that allows the user to have either a slim day pack, or plenty of fields by which to add MOLLE-based pouches for added functionality. Being made from 1000D Cordura, for its size and YKK zippers the Plan C is at a good price point for its materials. Alternative market comparisons could be made to Eberlestock’s Switchblade ($199), 5.11’s Covert M4 Backpack ($129.95), or the Noveske Discreet Backpack ($236) by First Spear. While other backpacks, often at a higher price, maintain a more urban profile, they often do so at a sacrifice to the opportunity to expand the pack. Additionally, source of manufacturing and hardware also play into overall market prices, and as such the Plan C is well priced among its competitors.
  • Comfort Good (4/5): With a moderate level of closed cell foam padding in the shoulders, and the thermoformed back panels, the Plan C was comfortable to wear. The narrow design helped ensure it stayed between the shoulders regardless of weight distribution. It was unlikely the user could overload the pack beyond the point of comfort since the main storage area is of moderate size. Carrying an AR pistol, broken down, was easy and the storage compartment allotted for the pistol’s components as well as some extra space. All the YKK zippers opened/closed smoothly, although it would have been preferred for the paracord pull tabs to be either rubberized or anchored in a plastic cap for tactile control.
  • Durability – Excellent (5/5): The 1000D Cordura had a significant level abrasion resistance as needed for life on the range or in the field. Throughout the Plan C, bartack and X-type stitching was noted reinforcing the shoulder strap connection points, drag handles, as well as zippers and MOLLE webbing. All zippers functioned easily and smoothly, and the coils did not cross thread (though it would be an improvement to use a thicker zipper coil in the future). The velour interior made for easy adjustment of the interior divider, though over time that (male) hook-and-loop material may begin to wear the velour down to where it is less secure. Throughout evaluations, no lose threads or popped stitching were noticed.
  • Functionality Good (4/5): As a modular, light backpack the Plan C provided a plethora of opportunity. It had sufficient size to serve as an EDC pack, or held balanced MOLLE fields on the sides and front to expand the Plan C into a more robust backpack. The thermoformed storage pocket provided sufficient protection to sensitive items that still needed immediate access, such as electronics or a GPS. All zippers had an excess strip of material to cover the zipper from moisture and limit the risk of potential saturation along those lines. A recommendation for Hazard 4 would be the inclusion of a compression/retention strap in the interior of the main storage compartment. While the use of the internal divider was helpful, it did not give that solid retention to secure the contents and was more intended to divide the interior for smaller items.
  • Weight Average (3/5): Coming in at 2.2 pounds (empty) the Plan C was a very lightweight and balanced light/moderate backpack, that gave the wearer the option to expand…provided it was done evenly. If weight or pouches were added to the front exterior laser-cut MOLLE, this addition in weight was more or less unnoticeable. However, if you added the pouch to only one side of MOLLE panels, and not both for equal balance of overall weight, then the disparity was readily apparent. This should be in mind when the user opts to expand the Plan C. In comparison the Eberlestock’s Switchblade (3.10 pounds), and 5.11’s Covert M4 Backpack (2.2 pounds) are both of a more of a traditional design and material for low-profile backpacks, whereas the Noveske Discreet Backpack (0.44 pounds) utilizes more lightweight and commercial materials to maintain that discrete appearance. This would place the Plan C at an appropriate (or average) weight for its materials and design within the current market.

Overall Rating – Good (20/25)

Product Link: https://www.hazard4.com/packs/day-packs/plan-c.html

IMG_2889I am reviewing this product as a courtesy to the manufacturer and via STL Shooting Enthusiasts, so that I can evaluate it and provide my honest feedback. I am not bound by any written, verbal, or implied contract to give positive reviews. All views are my own, and based off my personal experience with the product.

The views and opinions expressed on this website are solely those of the author. The views and opinions do not necessarily represent those of the administrative staff, and/or any/all contributors to this site.

 

Propper Summerweight Tactical Shorts: Just In Time For The Summer

As the temperature turns up, time on the range can translate to long hours in the sun. Thankfully the Summerweight Tactical Shorts by Propper can help keep you cool, while still giving you the flexibility for training. The additional pocket storage, and fabric design of the shorts help ensure that no matter how much you carry with you, you will still remain cool and comfortable.

Initially introduced circa in 2015, the Summerweight Tactical Shorts feature 11 overall pockets on an athletic-fit style short with an 11″ inseam. The material itself consists of a UPF 50 fabric, blended to a 94% nylon / 6% spandex ripstop that keeps the shorts light, and maintains moisture-wicking breathability.

At the waist, the Summerweight Tactical Shorts have a rigid waistband, and sit straight through the hip and thigh. The six, 1.5″ belt loops (four in the front, two on the back) coincide with an extended oversized button, and YKK zippered fly. The added gusseted crotch adds to the flexibility and movement.

On the leg are two flap-closure thigh pockets (one each side) secured with hook-and-loop, and with mesh lining. Above the thigh pockets are two YKK zippered pockets (one each side) to mid-thigh also with mesh lining. Each front pocket has re-enforced knife lining on the edge, and a partial mesh lining. The shorts also have two hook-and-loop secured watch pockets.

On the back are two YKK zippered rear pockets with a mesh lining, and a bonus concealed pocket between the two back belt loops wide enough to fit a spare AR magazine, notebook, or wallet.

The Summerweight Tactical Shorts come in sizes 28″ waist to 56″ and the listed colors include: Alloy (featured in review), Black, Khaki, LAPD Navy, and Olive.

Product Evaluation Scores:

  • CostGood (4/5): At $39.99 the Propper Summerweight Tactical Shorts continue the line of cost-effective clothing the company has been marketing with their EdgeTec products. Given that the clothing comes in a ripstop weave that will extend the longevity of the clothing, the shorts are very well priced in comparison to other tactical shorts on the current market.
  • Comfort Excellent (5/5): Amazingly breathable! The lightweight materials and the mesh lining not only keep the overall weight of the shorts to a minimum, but enable very good breathability amid high temperatures. During testing, the only mistake made was not using sunscreen because the shorts allowed the shooter to remain cool despite stressors and heat.
  • Durability – Good (4/5): Despite the lightweight materials and ripstop design, the durability of the Tactical Shorts isn’t in question. No loose thread were found and the shorts have re-enforced stitching in high-stress areas. The YKK zippers felt smooth and didn’t hang up during opening//closing so it is likely the only risk to the durability will come from genuine hard use over time. I would have liked to see a little more re-enforcement to the belt loops or waistline given that you can store a lot of items in all the various pockets and you’d need a sturdy belt to help secure it.
  • Functionality Excellent (5/5): Legitimately, with 11 pockets (including a concealed pocket that fits a backup AR mag) you would be hard-pressed to find tactical shorts that could compare.
  • Weight Good (4/5): At 4.2 oz. the lightweight materials and design translate to shorts that don’t feel heavy or pull at the waistline after an extended time worn, even with loaded pockets. With the summer months approaching, if shooters are looking for lightweight tactical shorts that will help ensure they stay cool, these would defiantly do it.

Overall Rating – Very Good (22/25)

Product Link: https://www.propper.com/mens/propper-summerweight-tactical-short.html

IMG_2889I am reviewing this product as a courtesy to the manufacturer and via STL Shooting Enthusiasts, so that I can evaluate it and provide my honest feedback. I am not bound by any written, verbal, or implied contract to give positive reviews. All views are my own, and based off my personal experience with the product.

The views and opinions expressed on this website are solely those of the author. The views and opinions do not necessarily represent those of the administrative staff, and/or any/all contributors to this site.

Pelican V250 Ammo Case: For the Long Term Safeguard of Freedom

Intended to extend the line of Vault protective cases, the V250 Ammo Case can protect a significant amount of ammunition for long-term storage, or to transport it to the range. It’s proprietary blend of material leads the ammo case to be up to 40% lighter than traditional ammo cans while retaining all the expected strength. The Air series of cases continues to provide Pelican’s leading level of protection at an affordable price to the consumer.

Like other Pelican Vault cases, the V250 is made from super-light proprietary HPX²™ Polymer with influence in design from Pelican’s Protector series to deliver a lightweight, watertight, crushproof, and dustproof case that offers a significant amount of protection. The polymer has an operational temperature range between -60° F and 160° F.

Exterior

With an overall exterior dimension of 16.27” (L) x 11.93” (H) x 7.90” (W), the V250’s exterior is comprised of Pelican’s Super-light proprietary HPX²™ Polymer for a lightweight shell that maintains maximum strength and impact resistance.

The V250 includes a newly redesigned Press and Pull™ latch made from an ABS polymer that secures the lid to the bottom. In addition, there is a single heavy-duty, ergonomic and foldable handle on the lid to aid in picking up the case.

Several security features built into the V250 are its two stainless-steel padlock protectors, and its single automatic purge valve (hidden under the latch) made with hi-flow Gore-Tex with a 3 micron, hydrophobic non-woven material.

Interior

With an interior space of 12.70” (L) x 10” (H) x 6.30” (W), the 1615 has an overall internal storage capacity of 0.46 ft³ that makes it ideal for storing ammunition, equipment, electronics, or any other type of sensitive gear.

Available only in Black (featured).

Product Evaluation Scores:

  • CostAverage (3/5): At $57.95 the V250 is intended to bring together Pelican’s new line of lightweight polymer technology, with the traditional concepts of ammo storage. Obviously its internal storage space makes it ideal for storing other items as well, but predominantly the V250 can store in excess of 1,500 rounds of boxed .223 ammunition, which is significantly more than the traditional milsurp 50 cal. ammo cans ($15-$25 depending on condition). Other market comparisons that share similar design and materials would be the 908 Waterproof Ammo Case ($54.95) by Nanuk. Or more inexpensive variants with less features for storage are Plano’s 1712 Ammo Box ($19,99), or the 50 cal. Ammo Can ($9.99) from MTM. If one is looking for the product with longer storage capability, waterproofing, and crush resistance then for its cost the V250 offers an appropriate (or average) cost given its unique materials, size, and design.
  • Comfort Average (3/5): From a comfort aspect, there was little notable aspects to the V250 beyond the appropriate number of features that aided in carrying the V250 when full. The Carrying handle provided a secure grip, and its more rounded design was far more comfortable in the hand as opposed to the more common flat milsurp ammo can handle. The overall bulk of the case however, did make it a little awkward due predominantly to the V250s width in relation to the proximity to the body when carried. The inward-facing edge of the ammo case would often bump into the leg while walking, unless held outward slightly. Pelican could alleviate this in future designs of the V250 by making altering the dimensions slightly to make it more accommodating while being transported.
  • Durability – Excellent (5/5): Much like other Vault or Pelican products, the V250 maintained the manufacturer’s legacy of durability despite a number of attempts to compromise its housing. The Ammo Case was thrown into the back of a truck (with other gear) and rattled around (on/off road), as well as given its own submersion test. In water the V250 remained amazingly buoyant, even necessitating a 35lb dumbbell on top to be fully immersed and still after an hour the contents remained dry. Throughout it all the housing was never compromised, and the seal/pressurization valve maintained positive function to prevent moisture or dust penetration. The shock and impact resistance held up excellent (with only surface marring noted), with nary any effect to the ammunition contained inside. This excellent level of durability put the V250 well above some of the cheaper variants of ammo cans that would otherwise have been compromised under the stress. Research showed there are a number of videos online of users attempting to compromise the V250 via freezing, but the case rebuffed those efforts per its sub-zero operational temperature range.
  • Functionality Average (3/5): Functionally, the V250 worked appropriately (or per average) much like other ammo cans in that it offered a secure storage space for ammunition or other items. Unlike milsurp cans however, the V250 lid could not be removed but rather opened fully to allow immediate access to the contents. For some, the ability to remove the lid is often the preferred method when in use—so users should be aware of this preferential difference. The press-and-pull latch did yield a secure hold, and maintained lock despite tests to the can’s durability. The carrying handle was also collapsible which would facilitate in the stacking of multiple Ammo Cases. By using 20-round boxes of .223 ammunition, and applying a grid measurement, the V250 should be able to hold approximately 1,500 rounds with still some room left over. This storage capacity would vary with either loose ammunition, or different caliber types.
  • Weight Good (4/5): At 5.23 pounds (empty), the V250 Ammo Case offered a significant level of durability due to its lightweight HPX²™ Polymer, something that helped to keep its overall mass low, while still offering significant storage capacity and strength. In comparison, more traditional milsurp 50cal ammo cans weighs 5.30 pounds (empty) each and holds approx. 1,200 rounds of .223, while the Nanuk 908 Ammo Case is 3.6 pounds (empty) and holds approx. 600 rounds of .223. Yet clearly both did not have the storage capacity of the V250. Even the Plano 1712 Ammo Case weighs 3 pounds (empty) but only had a max capacity of approximately 1,000 rounds. Thus, for its light weight and storage capacity, the V250 Ammo Can retained a good level of weight while empty, but still able to store more ammo than other market competitors.

Overall Rating – Above Average (18/25)

Product Link: https://www.pelican.com/us/en/product/cases/ammo-case/vault/v250

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I am reviewing this product as a courtesy to the manufacturer and via STL Shooting Enthusiasts, so that I can evaluate it and provide my honest feedback. I am not bound by any written, verbal, or implied contract to give positive reviews. All views are my own, and based off my personal experience with the product.

The views and opinions expressed on this website are solely those of the author. The views and opinions do not necessarily represent those of the administrative staff, and/or any/all contributors to this site.

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