Consider Your Materials Carefully
The best way to reduce weight within your gear kit is to replace heavy, outdated materials with state-of-the-art tactical technology. Integrated technology utilizes advanced lightweight materials such as Kevlar, stainless steel, and VELCRO to reduce weight while simultaneously increasing protection. Larger items in your kit such as your ammo pouch and protection vest have the greatest potential to be weight-overloaded when constructed from unsuitable materials. Your gear should complement your efforts, not hinder them.
Factor in Moisture Retention
Operators frequently forget to factor in the effect of moisture retention on the overall weight of their gear. Whether from sweat, rain, or water submersion, gear that holds water for long periods of time becomes unsustainably heavy. Just a half-gallon worth of moisture and/or sweat trapped inside your gear can add nearly five pounds to your total load! Additionally, retained moisture increases the likelihood of mildew and equipment malfunction, so choosing gear that dries quickly and wicks away moisture is paramount.
Choose Versatile Armor
Most tactical operators don’t require the same level of protection every single day. Ideally, the protection vest you choose can accommodate various levels of armor, from lighter weight soft armor to full-protection hard armor. Having the ability to easily switch out plate panels allows the wearer to customize protective gear for the job at hand; a low-risk, high-physicality day might benefit from the weight reduction of soft armor while a contact-potential, vehicle-transported mission might be better suited for more durable hard armor.
Manage Your Accessories
You might be surprised how quickly unneeded accessories add to the overall weight of your kit. It’s imperative that you only carry with you exactly what you need, and that it be readily accessible. Utility pouches designed for specific use, mobile phone pouches with easy-open VELCRO, and a dedicated handcuff pouch are all great examples of task-specific accessories. When every component of a kit has a purpose, it’s less likely to get bogged down with odds and ends accumulated over time.
Vel-Tye specializes in lightweight tactical gear kits for military, law enforcement and first responders. Our products are 100% Made in the U.S.A. and we’re happy to talk to you about how to lighten your gear load. Give our experts a call today to discuss.