Archive for July, 2011

The difference between lightweight tactical pants

I’ve been wearing the Woolrich Elite lightweight tactical pants for years and never had issues with them,   I’ve been wearing the Eotac tactical pants and didn’t have problems with them.    The 100% cotton rip stop as far as I know really is the lightest weight pant that I know of, and I’m still waiting for the Tru-Spec 24/7 pants to arrive.   The Tru-Spec pants I’ve been told do not wrinkle as easy, but they did feel a little bit heavier to me.   I did not view the Black hawk lightweight pants to be lightweight.  The 65% poly and 35% cotton really makes it for a heavier material.   In hot weather, when you can’t wear shorts, you have to wear the lightest weight apparel that gets the job done.

I do find the pocket designs on the Tru-Spec pants to be very useful because they aren’t giant BDU pants pants.   Something like the Woolrich Elite elite tactical pants in style 44447 are nice if you are hauling and M16 around, but the pockets are too big for every day use.   When it comes to colder weather the product differences are a little easier to wear on a daily basis and then it really gets down to the durability and fit of the clothing.  I’m still not a fan of the cell phone going in the pocket but most tactical pants seem to have been designed around a Blackberry size phone.


Keep that backpack stuff to a limit, get a good pair of tactical shorts

Something to seriously consider doing this year if you are going on a long camping trip or a hiking trip is to get some good tactical clothing.   People should know that much of what you see in the tactical apparel and clothing world actually started with rock climbing gear.   When you have to climb up the side of mountains having  things hanging off you can cause balance issues and snagging issues.   The deep rear pocket designs you see on many 5.11 tactical pants which were later copied by other companies was for rock climbers.   Stuff doesn’t fall out of them just because of the way the pockets are designed.  Much in the same way that Woolrich Elite and Eotac pants were designed for pocket carry.  The guns will more than likely float around the  pocket before they find their way out even if you are laying on your back.

I’ve found that a 20 oz bottle of water can easily fit in a pair of Woolrich Elite cargo shorts and even their lightweight versions.   If you have to ride a bike you’ll probable have to move the bottle, but it does come in handy to have pockets like this.  Many tactical vests are also designed to hold water bottles and it’s nice to be able to wear tactical shorts that were designed for something like this.  The Woolrich Elite Series tactical vest style 101 has two pockets in the back that can hold a bottle each.   Not only are these Woolrich Elite shorts tactical shorts, they are great for just about any outdoors fun.


Galco Kingtuk holster review

I’ve been wanted to get a Crossbreed holster for a long time, but they seem to be a little complicated for me to order online and I always wanted to hold one in my hands first before I purchased one.   It seems that as soon as someone comes up with an idea, and a good idea, somebody in the tactical and accessory market tries to copy it.   I’ve heard stories from guys attending SHOT Show that had to chase off Chinese attendees because all they did every year was show up, find out what’s new, and take the pictures back to China and then try and  make a knock off version of it.   We’ve seen this with optics time and time again.

I’m gonna keep my mouth shut on who is copying whom, but since Galco has such a large selection of holsters, and they cover a wide selection of right hand and left hand holsters, we gotta go with the best and most versatile product lines in this industry.   Galco holsters almosot always take a few days or more to break in.   This leather kydex combo Kingtuk holster was no different.   I’ve had times where the leather holsters were so tight that I thought I had to send them back because it was defective product.   I’ve learned to be more patient with leather holsters.   I think  the Kingtuk is a good idea and yes, it does not dig into you like a regular IWB holster, but I find them difficult to get on and off every morning, maybe I need Coffee first.


Heavy work in hot weather

Sometimes you have a day when the last thing you are thinking about is carrying a firearm or spare magazines.   There have been times that I just wanted to rip my belt off and thrown things on the ground because it was becoming so darn uncomfortable bending over and carrying stuff around while carry a pistol.   One thing that I do like to do at times is take off my gun and thrown it in a pocket.   Something very cool about wearing and owning certain tactical clothing pants and shorts is the pockets are so big that you can stuff a Glock 19 in them and they’ll go all the way down.   Pocket carry with such a large firearm is not something I would plan on doing for very long, but it’s possible.

Now that it’s early July and Summer heat is in full swing, I usually keep my tactical clothing to a simple lightweight pants or lightweight shorts option.   I tried to wear the Blackhawk ligthweight tactical pants, but they were too hot, lately I’ve been only wearing the Woolrich Elite tactical shorts that are standard cotton canvas material, have lots of pockets, but aren’t supper light weight that they don’t support guns and gear.  There is a much lighter weight 4908 short, but it lacks the cargo pocket and that is one of the most useful pockets I use.


Inseams really matter on tactical shorts

Now that summer is in full swing here in the Northeast, everyone that wasn’t prepared to deal with the weather is calling for the lightweight clothing. We recently had a couple guys that worked in the LEO field and they were talking about jumping over fences and which clothing was holding up to that.   He we go again, another person pissed off that we don’t have the Eotac 302 shorts in stock.   The Eotac shorts were in stock about a year and a half ago and were the first sign something was wrong with the company when they never arrive right before the summer last year.   The funny thing is guys that had them almost 2yrs ago are still wearing them.

The 5.11 tactical shorts that I have tended to feel like brown boxes that were cut around my waist and that silly back pocket strap makes me feel  like I’m in a marching band, but people seem to buy them.   The only decent option left out there seems to be the Woolrich Elite tactical shorts.   The style 4905 are probable the most versatile but some guys don’t like the length on them and really want 7 1/2 inseams.   The only issue we’ve had about the Woolrich Elite shorts is that they do seem to wear out in the crotch area faster than the Eotac shorts.   Mostly because of the way the stiching was done.


Rogue Elite is now carrying Smith Optics Elite tactical eyewear

Not only have we been organizing the new location to look as cool as it can look, we got an awesome looking Smith Optics display case in our store.   The LED lighting and design of the case makes viewing numerous styles and designs easier.   It was nice to be able to get something like that from a company.   There is a very long history to the Smith Optics production line, but there is a very big difference between Ski goggles and the eyewear that many military contractors are going to want to wear.  Having a turbo fan for our ski goggles would be nice, but if you have a smudge you just take it off and clean them, nobody wants to do that in a combat situation.

There are close to 14 or more designs to choose from that have a level of ballistic protection, glare relief and comfort.   The Max factor tactical eyewear is something that you can use at a gun club or use as military or law enforcement protection.   I’m somewhat amazed at the number of people that are buying the clear Lifestyle glasses from Smith Optics Elite eyewear.   Many of them just want to be able to have a wide angle of protection from blood born pathogens, and flying debris.   If you are not  sure what tactical eyewear you want to use stop in our shop and we can show you.


If you’re looking for tactical footwear that gives you support

If you’re looking for tactical footwear that gives you the support to haul heavy gear around, ask your UPS delivery guy.   Those guys are hauling weight around and they can’t slow down.   When you have to get away from wearing boots that weight 5lbs or more, support and safety are important, but you really feel it at the end of the day.   If you put that kind of weight on a UPS delivery guys feet, his butt is going to be dragging half way through the day and he’s not going to get the job done.   There is a lot to be said for take a pound or two off of a firearms weight in the battlefield because the guys that haul them all day long are the ones that will tell you they can feel the difference.

One of our biggest selling boot from Original Swat footwear is actually not really a boot.   Its the 1230 Air M.T. low, this boot is a shortened version of the extremely popular 1232 Air 9″ which is probable is number one of the Original Swat boots.   The first thing people notice about the footwear is that the boots are very light.   Nobody is going to complain that the boots aren’t bulle proof, but they gotta hold up and not wear you down.   Next time you’re out and about, look at who is wearing the Original Swat footwear, you may see you’re local UPS guy wearing them.


Buying trash and wearing it

I don’t think I’m going to run out of info on discussing these tactical clothing issues because I hear it all day long.  I just got off the phone with a customer that was bitching about the Eotac clothing being discontinued, and the “now what am I going to do?” is starting to set in.   I noticed a ton of gun shops in my area have stopped carrying clothing because I get it.. selling clothing is a royal pain for a gun shop because nobody wants to deal with the sizing issues and exchange rates that you have to expect whenever  you sell something like that.  Nobody buys an LWRC M6A2 and returns it because it doesn’t fit right, but we have sold hundreds of dollars of clothing and had it all come back for exchanges, it goes with the business.

At a recent show in Atlantic City, we walked around various tactical booths and checked out the stuff that was there.   One guy that use to sell the stuff for some of the big names said he hated wearing the tactical pants from one company because they felt like they were made of cardboard.    I didn’t disagree with him because that really is about where the tactical clothing market is at.   There is a lot of uniform style clothing but when you get down to comfort and durability, it’s almost down to about 3 or 4 clothing companies and then after that you have to decide if you want tactical or casual, and then it’s an even small market.  I wonder if anyone in the tactical apparel market knows that ?


Rumors and more rumors as to what is going on

The tactical market is absolutely flooded with tactical pants and tactical clothing.   I just did some research online for concealed carry vests and found a few smaller companies making vests, but I also noticed they are making pants.   I’ve heard enough bitching and moaning from our customers about the fact that they didn’t want to pay $50 for a pair of pants, and now I’m seeing a cluster of small companies making $80 + pants.   As a dealer, I have serious doubts about the profitability of clothing priced that high even if you create a cult following.   The reality is this, if you don’t have easy access to a manufacturing facility in China, India, or Indonesia, you really are going to have a hard time making money.

Now that cotton prices have shot up so  much due to the inability to grow it fast enough, prices have gone up for even the big companies.   With Eotac tactical pants swimming in rumorville,   the easiest transition for customers is to Woolrich Elite apparel although Tru-Spec seems to have gotten a good nod from people we have been dealing with.   One of the good things about selling tactical footwear is that Original Swat boots owns their own boot factory and they don’t have the scheduling issues that many clothing companies have.   If they are sold out of something, they order it and produce it at their own scheduling time line.   One thing that seemed to really due in Eotac was they never produced the right products at the right time and it was almost like the company never got its best stuff on the market.


Knee pads and other protective gear

We’ve been selling various tactical pants for the last 5yrs and one thing that I still find kind of odd is the whole knee pad insert.   When i first started using the knee pad inserts it was with the Woolrich Elite 4447 pants and the knee pads didn’t line up to where my knees were.   I later tried them on the Woolrich Elite 4429 pants and they worked on them, but you really only could get use out of them if you kneel on both knees at the same time.   That position may work at Church, but on the firing line, when I think of kneeling, it’s on one knee.   The knee pad inserts do hold up for a pretty line time, and for only $3 you can replace them for both sides.

If you are looking for serious protective gear for your knees and elbows, I seriously recommend using the Blackhawk Neoprene elbow pads and knee pads.   People have their preferences on what they want to wear, but there is a pretty big difference between using the ones you get on your tactical pants and what you get separately.   I was severely disappointed when the Eotac Direct Action line basically flopped because it hit the market and barely a month later the South Carolina location shutdown and all of the products were basically being cleared out at cost.

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