Osprey Replacement?

Discussion in 'Military Clothing & Boots' started by Gust Avrakotos, Jan 21, 2013.

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  1. Hi all,

    I hope this hasn’t been discussed recently already, I did a quick search and could only find a thread from around ’08.

    Was having a chat with a friend of mine recently who was slagging off Osprey armour (he is entitled to his opinion) as being too heavy and restrictive when out on the ground. I only used some of the older (Mk2 I think) stuff, and really didn’t have much cause to wear it beyond the odd Sanger spot (REMF) so have very little to compare it against.

    He then went on to say that it didn’t really matter as Osprey was a UOR and wouldn’t be used after we close Afghan as there is no budget/long term support plan for it. Anyone know if this is true?

    If so will there be a new competition for a replacement? My mate seems to think Paraclete is the way to go, but I don’t think I have ever seen this stuff other than a few phots on the t’inters and movie films. This stuff any good?

    I struggle to see how the powers that be ill get away with deploying forces without armour in the future, (seems like a Daily Hate wet dream) so surely it must get replaced?
  2. I believe this was answered about 6-8 months ago by 'Gearspotter.' We are getting new body armour with modular system, combat helmet and other equipment like load carrying (Bergens etc) under project: VIRTUS.

    I used Paraclete at my last unit and it is so much better when you compare how less restrictive it is, how much thinner it is etc. However, there isn't a better plate in terms of protection than the current Osprey plate. The only major thing lacking in Osprey is the ability to increase/decrease protection/posture. If you deployed to the jungle in that thing, it would be like a 'pressure cooker' and it is too bulky. Relative peace time Ops you would look too aggressive.

    We should look at what's been trialled by the US with regards to Eagle Industries, who's flying ballistic modular jacket is leaps ahead of our current Mk 60/61a. Their ground CIRUS is also brilliant.

    I'm sure our procurements and trials are probably all over it.....

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  3. Cheers for that Blob,

    I agree with the whole scale thing of Osprey, as default it seems too big/bulky, but taking away the weight of the plates (which are variable) a lot of the bulk seems to come from the filler and inflexibility of the material it is constructed from.

    If a modular/scalable system is needed then in my mind a minimalist option (maybe like this?) as a standard backed up by secondary jacket that is worn under in a higher threat environment would make the most sense?

    Something like the old Kestrel body armour (jacket) with a little redesign based on lessons learned?

    Surely something nice and simple like that would work for almost all eventualities?
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  4. A stool?
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  5. Just to be pedantic slightly. Body armour has been around for hundreds (if not thousands) of years. As an educated guess about its' lack of innovation and use previously, i'd imagine it came down to money and need for resources in other equipment.
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  6. They did have body armour in both World Wars (hint - there's a reason they're colloquially called 'Flak Jackets'). They were stuck with metal and not much else though which made it too heavy to be realistic as a standard issue item back then.

    I believe there was even body armour used during the Yank civil war.

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  7. As previously stated, body armour has been around for some time:

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  8. Original issue 'body armour' in NI was the US flack jacket as used in Vietnam, (apparently they also had matching shorts), later on came the MK 1 with collar attached and extra slippery plastic shoulder patches. In the late 80's we started to see the INIBA (Improved Northern Ireland Body Armour) which was designed to be worn under DPM and make you look rock. Still a piece of crap though. I'd have had the crappy old osprey any day.

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  9. msr

    msr LE

  10. Cold_Collation

    Cold_Collation LE Book Reviewer

    Blobmeister beat me to it on WWI... Google images of trench raiding parties from both sides. The IWM also had a display of such things a few years back. Body armour in the (relatively) modern era isn't new. Even the Russians were issuing for urban fighting in WWII.

    But in talking about issuing everyone in WWII with armour there's not just the technology to consider (although wouldn't spalling off a metal plate just carry on and do the job of a round anyway?). There's the whole uplift in terms of equipment.

    When I did Basic in the mid-80s, the clothing then was (arguably) still recognisable to the WWII soldier: Jersey Heavy Wool and scratchy shirts, amongst other things. Go back to the 30/40s and the kit issue was very lean - the individual soldier's load was remarkably basic. And attitudes were arguably different, too... there was a lot less squeamishness about casualties (in that it was accepted by both the chain of command and the public that war = people getting killed).

    I'd suggest that the answer sits somewhere between that acceptance, technology... and cost. Plus ca change.