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Here in there very center of the universe, a bunch of us came into possession of the new-ish MSV armor.  A good concept, generally - armor intended to be scalable from a plate carrier to the full monty.  However, as I've gone through setting mine up, there are some design choices that absolutely baffle me.  

Firstly - why do I have (partially) exposed plastic buckles for the front closure of the vest?  Have you seen plastic break when someone and all their gear lands on it?  I have.  It's only a matter of time...

Second - the "shell" that partially covers the buckle body.  Why?  Where to begin with this.  As alluded to above, it doesn't fully cover the buckle to provide protection.  The adjustment strap is stupidly long.  Like, "Oh, you failed tape...a year ago...and gained weight every month since?  Cool, you'll still fit." long.  The placement and size interfere with mounting the issue TAP because the attachments and "shell" are competing for the same space,  along with all the slack from the adjustment strap.  Bottom line - I'm about to procure some sort of x-harness for my TAP because the MSV took a system that worked on the OTV (and a host of other carriers) and effectively wrecked it.

Third - I might be able to understand the move away from hook-pile tape at the front of the MSV if they weren't using it as the sole means of closure/control at the rear of the MSV.  

Fourth - The shoulder straps/closure are HUGE.  The bright side is that when I shoot prone I can tuck the butt stock inside the collar/shoulder of the MSV in lieu of getting it properly into my shoulder pocket.  The downside is that it makes shooting dynamically (e.g. standing, walking, 5-hole barricade) a miserable bitch because the place where you want your rifle butt is a massive, nylon covered lump.  

The side panels are somewhat rigid, like a decent CCW belt, and that seems like a good thing.  The MSV incorporates some padding and a little effort, perhaps, managing load/airflow.  

Now, I assume that some of this MUST be my unfamiliarity with how the MSV is intended to be configured and used.  I'm hoping that someone here with more experience, knowledge, common sense can shed some light on this.

Original Post

Seeing as you got no replies I thought I'd chime in as my BCT just got the Gen 1 version a few months ago as well.  Conceptually I like it and I think it is an improvement over both the IOTV and SPCS vests I've been issued in the past.  That said, upon setting it up, I immediately set about looking at ways to strip down the bulk. 

First to go were the monstrous shoulder pads.  Next, regardless of its effect on the quick release system, I indent to see if there is any way humanly possible to retrofit either a traditional velcro cummerbund or a FS tubes-attached  version.  When you place anything bulkier than a knife or single magazine over one of those buckles, it just begs to catch on things. 

Ultimately, if I can't figure out a fix for that, I think I'll just wear the inner vest with my ESAPIS and my Mayflower rack over the top.  Better yet, sew a few QASM buckles to the inner vest and call it a day to make it nice and slick inside the Stryker.

Last edited by Community Member

Why?  Because it's more KDH trash, in this case based on a prototype USMC design that was ultimately rejected.  Don't think too hard about it.  Army acquisitions aren't supposed to make sense.

A decade later and the RBAV is still better.  Remember when the Army spent millions of dollars on a camouflage improvement effort only to dump all their research and go with a transitional pattern?  And, knowing that multicam was better, then decided to go with an old multicam prototype instead, even though the entire industry was already printing multicam everything?  Or when the first gen SPCS didn't have a cummerbund and the plates sagged down to your hips?  Or how the Massif combat shirt has a "modesty panel"? 

It's like that.

Last edited by Community Member

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