Regarding the discussions about improved rucks, DG16 frames and the interface with other packs, a question comes up here. 

Preface - Surplus stores don't really exist in my area. Even though I was near Ft Lewis over the weekend, I never had the chance to hit a surplus store in the area. 

Were I to try and pick up a medium or large Alice pack, a few sustainment pouches (like Sinister's build), or the MC/Arcteryx pack (had one, lost it last fall), or something else ... where do I go? Quick looks at ebay / amazon appear to lead to knock-offs rather than legit GI surplus. 


Original Post

Well, yeah that's the question.  These days, your surplus store is on ebay.  And being surplus you have to grab it  when you see it.  So the prices are there but the availability is wait until it shows up.  The other source is still gun shows.  I see lots of good surplus in my area, but you may have to travel to find it.  The surplus stores are sadly no longer reliable sources.  

You can find legit kit on ebay, you just have to be selective in your vendors.  The good ones only sell the real stuff, and have good reps.  You may have to sort through a bunch of crap, but it is there.  Maybe not when you want it, but if you keep coming back, eventually you will (probably) find it.  I buy lots of kit from there.

The gunshows in my areas still have a few guys that have genuine surplus at decent prices.  But you have to hit the bigger shows to find them.  Which is a pain in the ass, but doable.  You just have to hit the times where stuff is surplused and available.  So it becomes a constant monitoring process.  You just have to be ready to buy whenever stuff shows up.  

I try and hit the surplus wave when new stuff is being cut in.  For example, OCP is being surplused out as big army gets ready for "scorpion".  So you stock up on the OCP stuff.  I found the cammies, soft/hard shells, windshirts, etc, at gun shows.  Also the packs and LBE.  I found LBT 8-pocket rucks on ebay.  I found surplus OCP materials at a fabric wholesaler.

And then there are the new finds, like Crossfire out there.  So yeah, we're on the ground floor of their ruck systems coming out.  You can go ahead and get the frame and suspension now, and throw your own bag on it, and then upgrade to their bag when it's available in OCP.  I think these guys are going to be a great source of not only complete ruck systems, but also other LBE.

So yeah you have this mix of new cutting edge, and the older surplus.  Kinda a balancing act there.  It just takes constant work to ferret it out, no quick solutions as a rule of thumb.                  

"Pacifism is a shifty doctrine where a person claims all the benefits of the body politic, without any of the responsibilities, and then claims a halo for their dishonesty." Heinlein

I just Google the ever-loving shit for what I'm looking for.

Coleman's Surplus seems to be okay. I'm not sure about Sportsman's Guide anymore.

I also check the surplus sales. Unfortunately, I don't need to buy  75 packs, and so on.

Maybe a group buy?




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Military vehicle rallies, if you have one in your area, are another good source.  Every year around Armed Forces day there is a decent sized rally and probably 100 vendors that come out to Aberdeen, MD.  An assortment of everything is there, from WW1 stuff up to modern stuff.  Some stuff is overpriced and overhyped (like Blackhawk rucks listed as "Navy Seal rucks" for retail) but I've walked away with complete softshell sets in multicam for $40, a complete new large molle pack w/ frame in OCP for $100, etc.

I believe you are in N.Cali correct Erick? Try "offer up" for your local area. I see surplus gear a lot in my area but its under camping, military etc...

I was going to snatch up a newer type molle medium ruck for about 25 new on "offer up" ..someone beat me to it...I was not really motivated so I said meh...


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