Infantry Reserve issued kit

The_Duke

LE
Moderator
It is pretty good. Perhaps not a good as top of the line civvy kit, but considerably better than in years gone by.

Waterproofs are “moisture vapour permeable” rather than branded Goretex, but do the job well enough.
 
When you get issued kit in the Army Reserves what all do you get as standard? Is the kit decent quality? Do you get gore tex top and bottoms or is it some other type of waterproofs?
You get the same kit as the Regulars although some units are still using MTP PLCE (which does the job fine) and I'm surprised some many unissued Virtus bergens are floating around on eBay, the MOD really doesn't care about procurement costings
 
You get the same kit as the Regulars although some units are still using MTP PLCE (which does the job fine) and I'm surprised some many unissued Virtus bergens are floating around on eBay, the MOD really doesn't care about procurement costings
I've got issued a DPM bergan and webbing not long ago.
 
The kits fine, the water proof pants are no good because you just sweat like mad wearing the whole suit. The pants are only used on ranges when its wet, the jackets ok but if you treat your smock with waterproofing then you'd only use it when its really bad or again on the ranges.

Buy your own socks for a start if you're infantry, maybe an extra couple of t shirts for a start.
 
I've got issued a DPM bergan and webbing not long ago.
Does the job and does the job well for training, if you ever go on ops you'll get shiny new, for the training requirements I don't see why issuing DPM kit should be an issue, we're still wearing DPM CBRN suits with MTP lids and webbing.
 

Bubbles_Barker

LE
Book Reviewer
You get the same kit as the Regulars although some units are still using MTP PLCE (which does the job fine) and I'm surprised some many unissued Virtus bergens are floating around on eBay, the MOD really doesn't care about procurement costings
VIRTUS was procured without any kind of support solution.

That’s how much the MOD cares about procurement coatings.
 

nsstab

Clanker
I do find it funny the suggestion that MoD procurement are the most likely people to blame for kit ending up on ebay. Out of all the ways it could end up there I'd rate the procurement side as being the least likely, following the manufacturer selling elsewhere, soldiers at units selling it and storeman at units selling it.

Anyway, back on topic -the kits broadly fine. The smock weighs about 5 times as much as it needs to and barely qualifies as water resistant, but wearing something different would attract attention a lot more than say crye trousers or different socks / base layers, so stick with it.
 

Ravers

LE
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
It’s been quite some time since I was in this game, but generally you shouldn’t “need” to supplement your issued kit with any extra stuff. The Army will provide fit for purpose equipment that does the job.

However most of the kit has been made to a budget and there are always better options available if you want to spend some of your own cash.

During basic training it is unwise to rock up with any non-issued gear, firstly because it’s not allowed and secondly if you don’t make it through training you’ll have wasted your money.

Afterwards it depends on your unit’s policy. But some things you may wish to consider buying to make your life a little more comfortable…..

Boots - the issues ones are great now but there are always other options if you want to be flash.
A watch - Casio G Shock is still the go to option for most.
Canoe sacks to line your Bergen with - Ortlieb or similar.
A couple of small canoe sacks to go in your pockets.
A Jetboil or similar cooking system.
A multi tool like a Gerber or Leatherman - sometimes you can get these through stores if you’re very very lucky.
Torch.
Waterproof notepad and pen.
Socks.
Consumables such as foot powder and plasters etc.
Hat and gloves - Lowe Alpine and Sealskinz respectively.
Boot cleaning kit - polish and brushes etc.
Bungees and tentpegs for your basha kit.
Sniper tape.
Paracord.
A small flask that fits in an ammo pouch.
Waterproof map case.
Silva compass in mils not degrees.
Gaiters.
Merino base layers.
A less massive sleeping bag.
Windproof lighter.
Roll pin belt.
 
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Surely the only watch required is a F91-W?
 

Ravers

LE
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
Surely the only watch required is a F91-W?
Fair shout.

I’ve always wondered about the mentality of these guys who are obsessed about buying Gucci expensive kit to save a few grams here and there, and then they go out and buy a mahoosive G Shock or Suunto that weighs half a kilo.
 

Ravers

LE
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
To add to my post above…

I left the TA in 2012 before the introduction of MTP. There is a raft of kit now that is better than anything we used to get.

Warm kit for example. The 95 pattern fleece was really quite shit. It wasn’t that warm and didn’t compress very small when you weren’t wearing it. It was so shit that it was the one thing we were allowed (and pretty much expected) to replace and upgrade during basic training, usually with a Snugpak softie jacket, Keela Belay or Buffalo if you wanted that old school itchy look.

With the introduction of MTP, the fleece was replaced by an issue version of the softie jacket saving you about 100 quid.

Other examples of better kit include the micro fibre T shirts. We used to buy Helly Hanson microfibre base layers at 35 quid a pop which were essentially the same.

Issue gloves and hats are also infinitely better than what we used to get.

I understand there is also a new sleeping system out there. While the old issue bouncing bomb was epically warm, it took up the entire main compartment of your Bergen leaving absolutely zero space for anything else. Pretty much everyone binned it for a Snugpak sleeping bag which sacrificed some of the warmth but took up a quarter of the space.

The biggest and best change is undoubtedly boots. The old issue combat highs were laughable in comparison to what is out there now. You even get a choice between various makes and styles, none of which are shit and all retail at over 120 quid a pair. Scratch what I said about boots in the first post. There is absolutely no reason to purchase your own boots in this day and age.
 
Th
To add to my post above…

I left the TA in 2012 before the introduction of MTP. There is a raft of kit now that is better than anything we used to get.

Warm kit for example. The 95 pattern fleece was really quite shit. It wasn’t that warm and didn’t compress very small when you weren’t wearing it. It was so shit that it was the one thing we were allowed (and pretty much expected) to replace and upgrade during basic training, usually with a Snugpak softie jacket, Keela Belay or Buffalo if you wanted that old school itchy look.

With the introduction of MTP, the fleece was replaced by an issue version of the softie jacket saving you about 100 quid.

Other examples of better kit include the micro fibre T shirts. We used to buy Helly Hanson microfibre base layers at 35 quid a pop which were essentially the same.

Issue gloves and hats are also infinitely better than what we used to get.

I understand there is also a new sleeping system out there. While the old issue bouncing bomb was epically warm, it took up the entire main compartment of your Bergen leaving absolutely zero space for anything else. Pretty much everyone binned it for a Snugpak sleeping bag which sacrificed some of the warmth but took up a quarter of the space.

The biggest and best change is undoubtedly boots. The old issue combat highs were laughable in comparison to what is out there now. You even get a choice between various makes and styles, none of which are shit and all retail at over 120 quid a pair. Scratch what I said about boots in the first post. There is absolutely no reason to purchase your own boots in this day and age.
Those cotton tees were horrific and used to stink and yes the fleece was shit
 

Ding Dong!

Old-Salt
Fair shout.

I’ve always wondered about the mentality of these guys who are obsessed about buying Gucci expensive kit to save a few grams here and there, and then they go out and buy a mahoosive G Shock or Suunto that weighs half a kilo.
I used to adorn my wrist with a g shock way back, the classic style one. Fabulous, lasted the decade or so that I needed it for until I found myself in more genteel employment with absolutely no issues or even a battery change required.
I thought recently that I fancied a g shock again as my memory is becoming rose tinted.
Good god! They are all massive now!! Like really huge kitchen clocks on straps!
How do you get them down your sleeve??
 

Faded

Old-Salt
Agree with most of what @Ravers advises. For now stick with issue only, no need to draw attention to yourself at this stage.

When you get through training, you'll get a feel for what's allowed/not allowed. Having said that, start saving now for a Keela and a decent base layer. You'll be surprised how warm a decent base layer, warm jacket and waterproof will keep you.

I would personally advise a watch a little more robust than a Casio F91-W, I have had 2 and they are cheap for a reason. I had a £30 Casio that survived the whole of training and I only stopped wearing it because it got stolen.

Although I am a massive hypocrite because I have spent a fair bit on non-issue items…
 
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