Propper's Multicam OCP Scorpion Combat Uniform Coat is an example of NIR compliant clothing.
Tactical Gear

NIR Compliant Clothing

When researching tactical gear you will run across garments (clothing) claiming to be NIR Compliant. What does that mean? NIR stands for Near InfraRed. It is the wavelength of light from 780 nm to 2500 nm. It is not visible with the naked eye. But, it is visible with various kinds of night vision devices (NVDs), including tactical night vision goggles (NVGs). NVGs work on the amplification of ambient light (Image Intensification or I2 technology)- but can utilize Near Infrared light also. It is important to note that Image Intensification devices are different than thermal vision devices. Thermal vision devices use the difference in temperatures of objects and their backgrounds to provide a view in the dark (or daytime!). “NIR Compliant” gear will not protect against your actual heat signature. NIR compliant gear minimizes NIR reflected light – not the emission of thermal (hear) IR! If you are trying to obscure your heat signature – wrap yourself in a space blanket, mylar blanket – or other blanket intended to “preserve body heat.” NIR compliant gear will minimize your Near IR [Read more…]

The ACH (Advanced Combat Helmet) is made from Kevlar.
Tactical Gear

History of the ACH Helmet

What is the Advanced Combat Helmet? The Advanced Combat Helmet, or ACH, is a military helmet that is used in active combat zones. Development of these helmets began in 2003. United States Army Soldier Systems Center, U.S. Army Special Operations Command and U.S. Army Research Laboratory worked together to create this helmet. It is currently the standard issue helmet for all United States ground forces. The Advanced Combat Helmet is based on the MICH (Modular Integrated Communications Helmet). This helmet is an upgraded version of the PASGT (Personal Armor System for Ground Troops) and it offers more advanced ballistic and impact protection for the wearer. The PASGT, sometimes called the K-Pot, has been in use since 1983. It is also made of Kevlar. The ACH is also lighter than the helmets that came before it, making it more comfortable for the long periods of time that troops are required to wear them. This coupled with the increased amount of padding as well as waterproof padding makes the helmet easier for soldiers to wear in the field. Waterproof padding ensures that [Read more…]

Thermal imaging devices have many tactical uses
Tactical Gear

Thermal Imaging for Night Vision

Let’s talk about thermal imaging for night vision, sometimes called thermal vision devices. What is thermal imaging? Thermal imaging lets you use an electronic device to “see” temperature differences. Infrared radiation (IR), sometimes called infrared light, is electromagnetic radiation with wavelengths longer than that of visible light. That means you can’t see it with the naked eye. It is invisible. And this sort of infrared radiation (heat) emanates from every object and the surrounding environment. We call it “heat” but every object has a temperature – even very cold objects – and therefore some amount of IR radiation. So, with the right electronic sensors we can create a visual image based on these heat differences. Here’s some of the gear we are going to look at Further, the differences in the temperature of objects in their environment are usually quite drastic – so you can actually get a fairly decent view. When might this be handy? Well – there’s lots of things you can do with thermal imaging – like detecting temperature hotspots, remotely measuring the temperature of equipment, detecting [Read more…]

Tactical Gear

Best Eye Protection

Let’s talk about eyepro (or eye pro) – Eye Protection. We’ll look at some options that are affordable, but good. We’ll look at safety glasses meant for tactical use – meaning shooting – or being shot at. All these will meet the minimum standards for impact protection as required by the US military. Here’s what we’ll look at: Oakley Ballistic M Frame 2.0 Shield Sunglasses You’ve heard of Oakley – and these are good: Why are these popular? They offer mil-spec ballistic protection. They are z87 rated – it’s stamped right on the frame. With minimal visual distortion. The lenses and nose pieces are interchangeable. For example, you can swap out the lenses for clear – if that’s what you need. Made in the USA. OK, they look good too. Please note these are NOT polarized though. ESS CrossBlade ESS is a division of Oakley, and they make the . The manufacturer calls these “ballistic eyeshields”. They are made in the USA, and are Z87.1+ rated. These include advanced ClearZone Anti-fog coatings plus two different sized lens and nosepiece options [Read more…]

Best Comms Setup
Tactical Gear

Best Comms Set Up For Tactical Use

Let’s talk about tactical comms setups. What’s the essentials that you need? You’ll need a radio, an electronic headset (ideally with noise cancellation), and a push to talk (PTT) switch of some sort. Best Comms Headset The is an “operator” quality tactical headset. The 3M Peltor ComTac III Electronic Headset has it all, and a boom mic for use with a radio. First of all – this is a noise canceling electronic headset. Thanks to the dual mics it picks up all ambient sounds and quickly shuts off to protect you from gun shots (or loud industrial noises). These meet DA PAM 40-501 Army Hearing Conservation Program requirements. They are popular with the military and LEOs. Two AAA batteries will give you approx. 500 hours of use. It includes a radio jack (and a boom mic) – which is what makes this a comms headset vs just an electronic ear muff. This headset will work with various bump and ballistic helmets with a high cut shell. Want a streamlined in-ear headset options? This would work with an ACH (Advanced Combat [Read more…]

Best Ear Protection for Shooting
Tactical Gear

Best Ear Protection For Shooting

Let’s talk about the best ear protection for shooting. We’re going to look at all the technical features you would want in a pair of passive earmuffs or active noise reduction headsets. Passive ear muffs require no batteries and protect your ears against most loud and intense sounds. But, Active Noise Reduction headsets are available that are more pleasant to use – especially for long durations. These are great for wear all day on the job site – or on a mission. Those Active Noise Reduction headsets protect your ears just as well as passive devices too. Here’s the products we’ll be reviewing: Let’s dive right in and look at “ear pro”. Tips for Ear Protection for Shooting Before we start, let’s make sure you understand the basic terminology related to hearing protection. Here’s some things to look for in the best ear protection for shooting. In the year 2019, there’s really no reason to use old-fashioned ear plugs and passive earmuffs. Active Noise Reduction is cheap and plentiful – and it works great.

Plate Carrier Placards - Modular Front Panels
Tactical Gear

Plate Carrier Placards

Let’s look at Plate Carrier Placards. First of all, what is a PC Placard? It’s a modular front panel meant to be quick attached (or detached) to the front of a plate carrier (or “PC”). Why modular? This let’s you quickly and easily swap load-outs. For example, you can have a placard for the range, one of low-visibility, and another for patrol. You might also be able to swap between a chest rig and a plate carrier – depending on your needs for the day. First of all, you’ve got to find one that is compatible with your Plate Carrier. There are a variety of attachment options include: “G hooks”, side release buckles, and other attachment methods – some of which are proprietary. Here’s what a G hook looks like, in case you don’t know. Most of these placards are roughly three M4 mags in width – or about 6 MOLLE columns. Placard for London Bridge Trading Plate Carriers As one example, here’s the . You can see this has room for 3 M4 mags, plus 3 pistol mags – [Read more…]

Best Tactical Notebook 2019
Tactical Gear

Best Tactical Notebook 2019

Let’s look at tactical notebooks. What’s a tactical notebook? It’s a tough notebook made for field use – like in the mud, rain, or desert heat. And to use a tactical or field notebook – you’d better have a tough pen too. Here’s the products we are going to cover today. Features of the Best Tactical Notebook First of all, most of these will have a “window” or protective polycarbonate sleeve for displaying maps and checklists through the cover of the notebook. And because it is a notebook – you will be writing with a pen, pencil, dry erase marker, or grease pencil – so look for elastic pen loops – to secure all those writing instruments. Also handy is having a mesh pocket – so you can keep track of loose items. Convenient sizing – most will fit in a cargo pocket. These will also fit in the admin pouch, sleeve, or pocket on a Plate Carrier, such as the Crye JPC. Tough tactical or field notebooks are great for hikers, search and rescue personnel, hunters, squad leaders, and [Read more…]

Team Wendy Ballistic Helmet - ballistic and blunt impact protection - shown here in Ranger Green
Tactical Gear

Team Wendy EXFIL Ballistic Helmet

Team Wendy makes tough milspec gear – and their ballistic helmets are some of the best. The Team Wendy EXFIL Ballistic Helmet is a popular choice for a protective helmet. First off, let’s be clear – this is a ballistic helmet, not a bump helmet. What’s the difference? About $700. In all seriousness ballistic helmets are meant to protect you from high speed projectiles and fragments – something a bump helmet doesn’t claim to do. The helmet discussed here provides ballistic protection to meet the NIJ Level III-A standard (according to NIJ STD 0106.01/0108.01). It also provides blunt impact protection (ACH Blunt Impact Protection requirements per AR/PD 10-02). Let’s take a closer look at this outstanding piece of tactical gear. First off, the EXFIL Ballistic Helmet is made with a hybrid composite shell, and features a unique CAM fit retention system – that you can adjust with one hand. The high cut shell is made from polyethylene and other fibers in a proprietary composite matrix. By the way, these are NOT ACH style helmets (Advanced Combat Helmet). Those models have [Read more…]

Best Bump Helmet 2019 - Team Wendy
Tactical Gear

Best Bump Helmet 2019

Let’s look at the best bump helmet that you can pick up in 2019. What is a bump helmet? A bump helmet is protective gear worn to protect your head and skull. A bump helmet in particular protects you against bumps, falls, and similar impacts. Basically, bump helmets stop your head from hitting the sharp corner of things. A bump helmet is NOT a ballistic helmet. A ballistic helmet may protect you from a range of high speed projectiles. That’s not what a bump helmet is for. Why would you need a bump helmet? First off, for tactical operations and law enforcement there is obviously a need for a bump helmet. But, bump helmets can be useful for recreational activities too – like whitewater rafting, skateboarding, kayaking, rock climbing, and more. Or, how about: caving, ziplining, and rock scrambling? All those things require a good bump helmet. Bump helmets are also used in Search And Rescue (SAR) operations, particularly in mountaineering situations. They are also a popular accessory for airsoft, LARPing, and MilSim. We’ll look at the best bump helmets [Read more…]

Casio G-Shock - Best Military Watch?
Tactical Gear

Casio G-Shock – Best Military Watch?

The Casio G-Shock line of watches enjoy great popularity among people in military service. We believe that it’s important to understand exactly why military-style gear and accessories are better choices for durability, performance and expanded uses. We also believe that the Casio G-Shock is the best military watch available for the price. Shown here is the . Looks simple doesn’t it? Simple, reliable, and works when you need it. No bells and whistles. And battery life of weeks or months. That’s the whole point. We’re going to look at some other options too, here they are: What Is a Military Watch? The definition of military watches varies, but one of the most common interpretations is that military watches are highly functional timepieces without a bling factor. Jewels, gold and other eye-catching features are worthless to soldiers deployed in the field. Watches with dazzling features can be a danger because the flash can attract unwanted attention and even compromise your attention and performance if the watch is damaged. You might fail to take the safest course if it puts your fancy [Read more…]

Best Hook and Loop Pouch
Tactical Gear

Best Hook and Loop Pouches

Need hook and loop (velcro) pouches or accessories? Check out these items. Chemlight Holders The lets you keep chemlights within easy reach. It has velcro on both sides, so you can place it on your shoulder hook and loop, and then place any necessary patch over top of it. For chemlight carrying, here’s a minimalist option. The has velcro on the back. It is perfect for chemlights, or for spare CR123 batteries.

Best MOLLE Pouch 2019
Tactical Gear

Best MOLLE Pouch 2019

Let’s talk about the best MOLLE pouch. What is the best pouch? That’s a trick question. It depends on what you need it for. We’ll go through a variety of cool gear that fills a variety of roles. Consider this a “best of the best” list. Best General Purpose MOLLE Pouches The is a great general purpose MOLLE pouch. If you need to carry a 200 round magazine for a SAW it is of course perfect. But I’m going to assume that is not what you are here for. What is so great about this? For one, this is genuine US military surplus – so that means made in the USA. And it’s made to milspec requirements – so it’s not a cheap piece of junk. And, these are brand new. It is size 9″ height x 7″ width x 3″ deep. There also two 6″ MOLLE straps on the back. Here’s the MOLLE on the backside. Carry mags or anything else in this high quality and cheap pouch. These are also great to organize items inside your rucksack. Best [Read more…]

Best Tactical Multi Tool 2019
Tactical Gear

Best Tactical Multi Tool 2019

Let’s look at the best tactical multi tools for 2019. What is a tactical multi tool? It’s a multi tool for tactical situations – those involving firearms and other military equipment. And you don’t have to be an operator or a SWAT team member to make use of these. Throw one in your range bag the next time you go shooting. We’re going to highlight several products and explain why these are better than your regular Leatherman. If you don’t want to read all of this – here’s the gear we are going to cover: Leatherman MUT – Tactical Multi Tool Leatherman is a known and trusted name in the multi tool business. The has all the tools you’d normally expect. But it is designed to maintain military gear with the addition of a bronze carbon scraper, disassembly punch, bolt override tool and more. This multitool is made from 154CM Stainless Steel – and that’s what we want. Just as important – it’s available in flat black color. And that’s what we’d recommend. It is 5″ when closed and weighs [Read more…]

Best Tactical Flashlight 2019
Tactical Gear

Best Tactical Flashlight 2019

Every man needs a good flashlight – it’s a basic piece of gear with immense practicality. Let’s look at the best tactical flashlights you can buy in 2019. Do you need an ultra-bright and dependable flashlight for self defense, home defense, or patrol duty? Or maybe you just want a practical Every Day Carry (EDC) flashlight that can also be used for self defense? You need a flashlight that won’t let you down when your life is on the line. Shown here is the – it is our top pick for best tactical flashlight. We’re going to describe in detail the things you want in a tactical flashlight. And we’re going to show you a range of options to fit any budget. Let’s get started. Don’t want to read it all, here’s our top picks. What is a Tactical Flashlight? First of all, what do we mean by tactical flashlight? A tactical flashlight is a light intended to be used for self defense, military, or law enforcement purposes. Handheld tactical flashlights are often used along with a pistol, but they [Read more…]