Rucksacks: Web-Tex or 2nd hand PLCE?

#1
I'm looking to kit out my No 2+3 twin sons for Cadets and D of E, with a Bergan.

One option is to get PLCE ones off Fleabay/Army Surplus (but 100ltr capacity is prolly a bit big for a 14yr old!!)

One poss. alternative is an 85ltr lookalike by WebTex (best price about £85), or summat in DPM from Mil-Com.

I'm cagey about quality of both these brands. Dealers say that they are same quality as issued kit (but they would say that, wouldn't they!) and I'm looking for input from anyone who has used WebTex/Mil-Com Bergans (positives as well as negatives, pse), or has suggestions for a decent alternative in OG or DPM.

I see Snugpack have something in Olve Green, but again, I can't find any reviews.

Over to you, and many tanks :-D
 
#2
When I started as a cadet I got a used PLCE bergan, which has been perfectly fine- used it on DofE expeditions and Field Exercises with no dramas, though I did have to fix the internal frame, as one of the rivets had broken and the load wasn't distributing properly. However, bergans are designed to work best with webbing- if they're going to be using it on its own, then they'll probably want something with a better waist belt than a PLCE bergan- my 14 year old shoulders were aching quite a bit after three days of carrying about 30kgs of assorted useless kit up and down Dovedale. That's another thing- it might be better to get a smaller pack, as there's less inclination to take everything and the kitchen sink, when all that's needed is a tent, waterproofs, food, and plenty of spare socks.
 
#3
When I started as a cadet I got a used PLCE bergan, which has been perfectly fine- used it on DofE expeditions and Field Exercises with no dramas, though I did have to fix the internal frame, as one of the rivets had broken and the load wasn't distributing properly. However, bergans are designed to work best with webbing- if they're going to be using it on its own, then they'll probably want something with a better waist belt than a PLCE bergan- my 14 year old shoulders were aching quite a bit after three days of carrying about 30kgs of assorted useless kit up and down Dovedale. That's another thing- it might be better to get a smaller pack, as there's less inclination to take everything and the kitchen sink, when all that's needed is a tent, waterproofs, food, and plenty of spare socks.
That is, I guess, why I am looking for alternatives - PLCE was the bizniss when i was last on ops in S Armagh, 20yrs ago - but I don't see my lads needing to carry quite so much ammo, ECM/Comms kit, or batteries + stuff (yet :-D )
 
#4
Just half fill a PLCE bergan. Or don't use the side pouches. I'd stay well away from the fake stuff, even for cadets.
 
#5
Webtex is utter rubbish.

Get a PLCE bergen, plenty about in really good condition for not many sheckels.
 
#7
Avoid Web-tex like the plague is my advice. A mate of mine had a snugpack daysack a while back, and it seemed to tick all the right boxes (although I've never had one myself, I must add).
 
#8
Get down to Blacks or Millets and get a pretty decent civvy bergan for a lot less. I got one for my lad, instead of throwing my PLCE Shortback on him, and its lasted for 6 years now. Alot better back ventilation and shoulder support
 
#12
Get a PLCE bergen second-hand, and teach them not to fill it with too much.

Best bit is, you'll spend a few quid buying it in the first place, but it'll be worth the same when you no longer need it and sell it on.
 
#14
Get 'em 58 pattern with large pack, moan all you want they're big enough (for cadets) and will out last your lads time in the cadets, and you'll pick em up for peanuts.
 
#16
Get a PLCE bergan and take the side pouches off. Designed to be squaddie proof and will do for what they need, unless they intend doing something more strenuous than 35miles (10 tors) on a w/e.
 
#18
generally avoid anything highlander as it is one of the lowest quality companys out there, if hes a small 14yr old like me go for the plce patrol pack with a belt order and attach roll mat, sleeping bag ect outside the pack with bungies, i just came of a weekend exersize in the pentland hills today using that carry method and it is very comfortable
 
#20
Ignore this man.

And 58 is now verboten in most counties or soon will be.
You think I need to be told?

58 patt was 'ally' when I was 14 - but only 'cos of what went before !!

I bought a Berghaus Cyclops Roc (which I still have) 18mths after leaving RMAS - and that was the basic design copied for the PLCE Bergan.

Prescient? No

Practical? Yes.
 

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