Issue molle belt v Solo International belt

breathingoutmyarse

Swinger
Kit Reviewer
#1
I am just getting ready to pack to my kit for another Op Tour to Afg. On my previous tour (H13) I took my webbing with me (a mixture of PLCE and tailored bits from Dixie's Corner). I ended up spending the first 5 months living out of a Jackal so the webbing became redunant. The times I did use it I made the mistake of overloading on ammo. I probably had enough ammo to single-handedly win the Battle of Roarkes Drift! Towards the end of the tour, I moved to NES(N) but had already backloaded my webbing to BSN. Big mistake! I was now on foot and felt vunberable with all my kit on my daysack.

This time I am taking webbing using a molle belt. I knew we were going to get issued one, but didn't want to wait until after PDT to play with my kit. I purchased a molle belt from SOLO INTERNATIONAL in HEREFORD. It cost 69 quid, but gucci kit is worth it, right?*

It has 3 rows of molle straps which is vital for securing longer pouches. The issue belt has two. The main problem with two rows, is that if you put a magazine pouch on (which is going to be a common setup for most!) the pouch is twice a deep as the belt, so the bottom of the pouch digs into your leg/rubs your thigh.

WEB-LONG-OBLIQUE-RANGE-PATR-01.jpg

Another reason why I will not be using the issue belt, is that the actual strips of molle are not particularly well attached (not unlike the issue pouches). The molle strips on the SOLO INTERNATIONAL belt are triple layered and are actually the same colour as the background.

The SOLO INTERNATIONAL belt has two other distinct advantages. Firstly there are spaces underneath the belt where you can access the internal belt (a opposed to the hippo pad part). This allows you to attach drop leg holsters, pouches (if you really feel you want something bouncing around on your leg) or as I have down a low rider for my Israeli designed FAB holster.

The second point to note is that soft inserts can be purchased to slide into the belt. I believe this are manufactured to the same spec as the Osprey Mk4 inserts. SOLO INTERNATIONAL designed the original OSPREY in MTP, the prototype is actually in there shop. It looks like a the Desert Mk3 in MTP.*

Verdict:*

For serious users I would recommend the SOLO INTERNATIONAL belt. It has advantages over many others on the market as in addition to the points mentioned above, it is IR absorbent, which makes it harder to see through early generation NVAs. If you are operating out of a vehicle, I wouldn't bother buying one. The biggest risk with the issue kit is that we have been told it will be issued in theatre, therefore serviceability/existence of said item is unknown and by the time you see it is too late to buy one!
 
#2
By any chance, have SOLO INTERNATIONAL chucked any cash/free webbing your way?
 

breathingoutmyarse

Swinger
Kit Reviewer
#4
They havent. I tried the disciple belt (which a friend lent me) and a few other bits. I was in rehab for a few months after H13 so had time to be a kit gimp and look at the options. I rate the belt, though a considerable amount of kit in the shop is PANTS. The yoke they recommend with the belt is horrible and can't be worn under OSPREY as it digs in. Some of the other stuff is overpriced and I would look at Dixies Corner for most things.
 

Caecilius

LE
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
#6
I am just getting ready to pack to my kit for another Op Tour to Afg. On my previous tour (H13) I took my webbing with me (a mixture of PLCE and tailored bits from Dixie's Corner). I ended up spending the first 5 months living out of a Jackal so the webbing became redunant. The times I did use it I made the mistake of overloading on ammo. I probably had enough ammo to single-handedly win the Battle of Roarkes Drift! Towards the end of the tour, I moved to NES(N) but had already backloaded my webbing to BSN. Big mistake! I was now on foot and felt vunberable with all my kit on my daysack.

This time I am taking webbing using a molle belt. I knew we were going to get issued one, but didn't want to wait until after PDT to play with my kit. I purchased a molle belt from SOLO INTERNATIONAL in HEREFORD. It cost 69 quid, but gucci kit is worth it, right?*

It has 3 rows of molle straps which is vital for securing longer pouches. The issue belt has two. The main problem with two rows, is that if you put a magazine pouch on (which is going to be a common setup for most!) the pouch is twice a deep as the belt, so the bottom of the pouch digs into your leg/rubs your thigh.

Another reason why I will not be using the issue belt, is that the actual strips of molle are not particularly well attached (not unlike the issue pouches). The molle strips on the SOLO INTERNATIONAL belt are triple layered and are actually the same colour as the background.

The SOLO INTERNATIONAL belt has two other distinct advantages. Firstly there are spaces underneath the belt where you can access the internal belt (a opposed to the hippo pad part). This allows you to attach drop leg holsters, pouches (if you really feel you want something bouncing around on your leg) or as I have down a low rider for my Israeli designed FAB holster.

The second point to note is that soft inserts can be purchased to slide into the belt. I believe this are manufactured to the same spec as the Osprey Mk4 inserts. SOLO INTERNATIONAL designed the original OSPREY in MTP, the prototype is actually in there shop. It looks like a the Desert Mk3 in MTP.*

Verdict:*

For serious users I would recommend the SOLO INTERNATIONAL belt. It has advantages over many others on the market as in addition to the points mentioned above, it is IR absorbent, which makes it harder to see through early generation NVAs. If you are operating out of a vehicle, I wouldn't bother buying one. The biggest risk with the issue kit is that we have been told it will be issued in theatre, therefore serviceability/existence of said item is unknown and by the time you see it is too late to buy one!
Boris's belt has only two strips of webbing but I've found it absolutely fine with packed ammo pouches and 354 in my belt kit. It may be more to do with the cut of the webbing rather than the number of loops.
 

breathingoutmyarse

Swinger
Kit Reviewer
#7
Boris's belt has only two strips of webbing but I've found it absolutely fine with packed ammo pouches and 354 in my belt kit. It may be more to do with the cut of the webbing rather than the number of loops.
Possibly, it was more something which I have found annoying. It could be that I have a massive backside! Or maybe the height in which I wear ny beltkit?
 
#8
Boris's belt has only two strips of webbing but I've found it absolutely fine with packed ammo pouches and 354 in my belt kit. It may be more to do with the cut of the webbing rather than the number of loops.
I have both, belt and under armour yoke from Boris. You cannot buy that quality control. It is hand built, so enough said! Highly recommended.
 

Attachments

#15
I'm gonna stick with Boris's belt and yoke. It will take a ******* lot to beat that.
 
#17
I have met both the Gentleman from Dixies (who is a real Gent), and the lads from SOLO who are geninue guys at various military shows, (Aldershot Army Display, DVD etc).

Its horses for courses try the kit on, ask about modifications, try other manufactures, make a decision and buy it, or stick with webbing from QM's which can be exchanged if it fails.

Being Old & Bold my 58 patt is packed in the garage.
 
#18
For information Boris is in the process of trialling belt variations....a three rows belt that gives both a hippo type pad and 'airborne' type of facility but with the versatility of molle, it too is shaped and up to his usual standard, also he a thinner two row molle belt, both are shaped to allow for a comfort fit.

I can't praise his kit enough a one man set up he must work all hours to produce the quantity and quality of kit that he does.

Buy 'Boris' you wont be disappointed.
 
#20
Finally got some photos of the issue belt.
I'll let you make your own mind up.....

ImageUploadedByARRSE1340444520.291232.jpg

The kit consists of pad, inner (PLCE style) belt and a webbing under armour yoke. ImageUploadedByARRSE1340444613.776440.jpg

Same printed polyester webbing as on the Osprey IV. ImageUploadedByARRSE1340444667.960168.jpg

There are 18 PALS columns on this one. The middle six open on a 25mm Velcro to allow for inner belt adjustment. ImageUploadedByARRSE1340444788.693262.jpg
Inside the pad is what appears to be 8-10mm closed cell.
ImageUploadedByARRSE1340444879.060792.jpg
The body side is lined with what looks like Spacer Fabric.
 

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