Smocks, Battlevests and Zoot Suits....

#1
Right here goes.......

I have managed to source a supplier that will build me Windproof Smocks, Battlevests / ChestRigs and Zootsuits, but I would like some help?

I am happy with the "zoot suit" types of designes, and won't be looking at bringing out a battlevest or chest rig any time soon, but I would like some views on Windproof Smocks.

What features would you like on a smock? Multi pocket (SASS Type)?, Wind and Water Proof (Arktis Type)? or plain Windproof Type? Pockets in different places? More pockets? Less Pockets? Pockets the correct size for Magazines? etc

What material would you like it made of? Ripstop, Cotton, etc

Does it need a Hood? Front and Rear Rank Slides? Soldier 95 Type Buttons? IRR Treated? Para Type Cuffs?, Drainage holes in pockets? PRR Pouch built in on upper left shoulder? any other features you think might be useful? etc

What Colours would you want smocks produced in? DPM, Desert, OG, Black DigiPatt??
 
#2
IMHO, get some samples knocked up, and invite some of the critical and knowledgeable from this site or your local infantry regiment to 'Extreme critique" the stuff.

SK
 
E

error_unknown

Guest
#3
Hmmm, good question.

My wish list would be:


  • Ventile or similar water-resistant/breathable material.

    Hood

    Rank tabs front and rear

    Soldier 95 buttons

    Chest map pockets like the Soldier 95 smock

    Para smock cuffs

    Definitely no FFD pouch on the arm

    Lanyard attachment points inside chest pockets.

I currently wear an issue type SAS windproof smock - I bought it, not Walting - which is fine for me, but it could be improved. The water-resistance would be the number 1 consideration.
 
#4
I tailoerd my smock with a FFD pocket located at the bottom of each top pockets. and a compass pouch at the top of the right hand pocket.

worked for me! :)

SK
 
#5
I was looking at going for something along the lines of the following:-

Made in True Ripstop Material - IRR Coated Available in British DPM, Desert DPM and Possible a DigiPatt Material.

Hood

Rank tabs front and rear

Soldier 95 buttons

Chest map pockets like the Soldier 95 smock

Para smock cuffs

D Ring Lanyard attachment points inside chest pockets

Drianage holes in bottom of all pockets

Lower Pockets towards the side of Jacket - thus giving you the ability of using them when in the prone position - Looking into the idea, of splitting lower pocket in half, and making them the right size for an A2 Mag?

2 x Internal Pockets (1 each side) - To hold Tams / Signal Info?

The smock would have a supplied Fully Waterproof and Breathable inner liner, that would zip in / out.

Would the above be useful?

Regards
 
#6
When this goes ahead (approx 2 - 4 months) I would happily supply a few samples to the Infantry Types on here to test for me? What I am trying to do now, is make a good field smock, that would cope with "most" of what is needed.

I suppose the aim is to make a cross bewteen Arktis / SASS / Issue item at a good price.......

The only other thing to note, would it be useful to have a PRR Pouch mounted to the Jacket (upper left area) or would some webbing type straps be better - thus giving you the ability to fit the issue PRR Pouch on yourself in you wanted to?

Regards
 

Cutaway

LE
Kit Reviewer
#8
Like Chickenpunk says but with a tab for the hood, á la the rank tab, a FOGB map pocket inside the smock, a pocket for a compass, lightweight on the left chest and the pockets being made of a harder wearing material.

I wouldn't have mag pockets on the smock, there's comparitively few occassions when no sort of webbing will be worn, and even then the french style zipped chest pockets work well.
I like the extra pockets that the SASS type has, but that's just personal preference.
The drainage holes are a good idea, but these occur naturally unless the pockets are hardwearing......
 
#9
I'll happily test drive one for you when you get them. I'll buy it if I like it, if not i'll return it with some ideas.
Woolen cuffs can be a problem in summer, as it makes you sweat like a barsteward. Velcro strips to take them off maybe (making sure the soft side is on the jacket, and the not so soft side on the cuffs?). As little velcro as poss. Everything CP said basically.
 
#10
My £0.02

A windproof SAS smock type thing, as per the most up to date version (c95 buttons etc) less the arm pockets, and give it the zip chest pockets found on issue smocks... don't know about other people, but this is the reason I hardly use my SAS smock, I find these easy access pockets the ones I use most, no faffing about with buttons.

Drainage holes I have never had a smock with these, and never felt the urge... surly they just weaken the pocket?

Definatly no woolen cuffs, just normal c95 smock cuffs would get my vote

And a rather nifty feature I've seen on some Hereford issue jacket somewhere, is some zip up vents under the arm etc, which let your body get some air when having to work hard with the sweat going....definate bonus if these could be introduced for those hot days, without interfering with you on normal occasions!!!

Regards

SS
 
E

error_unknown

Guest
#11
Tango34_UK said:
Lower Pockets towards the side of Jacket - thus giving you the ability of using them when in the prone position - Looking into the idea, of splitting lower pocket in half, and making them the right size for an A2 Mag?
I wouldn't bother: if I put mags in my pockets, they go in the chest pockets. Realistically, I rarely carry anything other than a pair of gloves and/or my beret in my lower smock pockets.
 
#12
chickenpunk said:
Tango34_UK said:
Lower Pockets towards the side of Jacket - thus giving you the ability of using them when in the prone position - Looking into the idea, of splitting lower pocket in half, and making them the right size for an A2 Mag?
I wouldn't bother: if I put mags in my pockets, they go in the chest pockets. Realistically, I rarely carry anything other than a pair of gloves and/or my beret in my lower smock pockets.
Agreed with CP on this. Don't incorporate the para sock cuffs. I don't think the majority of us non-hats like them.
 
#13
I've recently bought and been wearing the Arktis waterproof which is generally fine, but I miss (which is odd since I'm using it instead of a very senior windproof arctic which finally died in a major way) the pen slots in the C95 shirt and smock. They don't get in the way if you're not using them but are very handy when you need a pen/pencil/cylume etc. The other minor gripe is that the hood (when rolled) tends to unfurl itself and flap around after a couple of hours because its on a little velcro strap rather than the ties that the arctic has.
 
#15
The issue with cuffs is a perennial one. Its nice to have knitted cuffs in the winter, but the inability to roll up the sleeves can lead to overheating in warmer weather. I solved the problem by having two smocks, but thats expensive.
Maybe you could come up with a design that has zip-off sleeves, and comes with two pairs, one with knitted cuffs and one with buttons. If the zips where above the elbow, it would be possible to just buy a new pair of sleeves when the elbows wear through. You could also offer "sneaky-sleeves" with neoprene inserts in the fore-arms.
Lower mag-pockets is a bit of a non starter as anything that impedes your ability to go prone is a no-no. As CP points out, lower pockets are really only good for soft item like gloves and headware. Mesh under-arm panels are nice to allow air-flow.
Personally, as long as its windproof and fast drying, I'm not worried about it being waterproof. If its mild and wet, it doesnt matter, and if its cold and wet I wear a fleece or Buffalo underneath.
 
#16
Can you do us crabs a version? Pockets big enough for the Rates and that looks scruffy from day one?!

No - seriously - I also prefer the elastic & cord tidies that are on the current CS95 over the laces of the old windproofs - much better. I don't know how much it would add to the manufacturing costs to have the ends sewn to the jacket to keep them under control.
Double fabric on the elbows/forearms and possibly in the arrse area too? I liked the old 'big pocket' in the back of the older jackets - better to sit on & useful at times. Look at the design of the hood too - make sure you can zip the jacket all the way up with the hood rolled - right to the neck.
Nothing else to report.
 
#17
The Irish issue waterproof has an internal knitted cuff with a velcro patch in in, so you can open it if you fancy a bit of air. It's a nice bit of kit, as is most of their current idvidual equipment.
 
#18
Hood is a must.

Not knitted cuffs - too hot and can't roll sleeves up

Windproof material with ripstops and should be fast drying

No pockets on shoulder - webbing gets in way

Tab type buttons with some cunning way to cover/protect the buttons so they don'y get caught in cam nets!! :evil:

Zip chest pockets like the issue one

Must be IRR coated to at least the same standard as the issue ones

Pen holders in pockets is a good idea whoever said that

Double baffled front zip flap

Double stiches on all pockets with the toughest thread you can get

I'm in a cold and windy, very, very, windy place way down south for the next few months and would happily test one. PM me if interested.

Hope this helps
 
#19
Hood is a must.

Not knitted cuffs - too hot and can't roll sleeves up

Windproof material with ripstops and should be fast drying

No pockets on shoulder - webbing gets in way

Tab type buttons with some cunning way to cover/protect the buttons so they don'y get caught in cam nets!! :evil:

Zip chest pockets like the issue one

Must be IRR coated to at least the same standard as the issue ones

Pen holders in pockets is a good idea whoever said that

Double baffled front zip flap

Double stiches on all pockets with the toughest thread you can get

I'm in a cold and windy, very, very, windy place way down south for the next few months and would happily test one. PM me if interested.

Hope this helps
 
#20
Thank you for all your help so far, I will be sending my first design off in the next few weeks, with a sample coming back to me in about a month after that.

Once this has happened, It will be my aim to get any further modifications done on the smock within about a month, then get 3 - 5 samples made up in British DPM - Yes I will then happily let some people have them for testing.

As for Battlevests, I have a supplier that can supply made to order (ish..) battlevests, but the cost(s) are high. Have a look at their website www.combatkit.net and let me know what you think.

Regards
 

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