Saturday, January 18, 2014

PDT - Practical Defense Training Technologies

Hey CQB Radio peeps,

Today we look at some products from Practical Defense Training Technologies (click on the name for more information and their website).  What do they do?  Simple enough - they offer reality-based training in what they call their 'mico-emersive trainer' using, among other things, airsoft as a training tool.  They offer other services as well as selling some tac gear, so for the purposes of our post today, we are giving an overview of the PDT protective gear that is used during their airsoft-centered training.

First thing to note - you can purchase the protective gear in a full-set or in individual pieces.  So if you're an airsofter - particularly a CQB player - this is some kit you might want to consider.  

Here's the insert you get when your order the protective gear from PDT

And the bag that the gear comes in.  Nice bag, solidly-made, and it holds all the gear in the set.

Here's a look at the face mask.  Features include ear protection that still gives you the ability to still hear, an anti-fog lens that offers a maximum of peripheral vision.  On that note, PDT says that their dual-lens goggles are the only true no-fog lens on the market.  Want comfort in a mask - this one offers some nice soft gaskets to keep you safe and at the same time keep it comfortable.

Gloves - I love me some nice tac gloves. Protection is literally built-in to this glove - it's not on the outside, it's stitched into the glove.  Hook-and-loop closures on the wrists, cow-hide palms, and stretch material make the gloves safe and also comfortable to wear.

Neck protection.  Ever get shot in the neck?  Yeah, I know - THAT hurt.  Here's your neck protection.  Again light-weight and comfortable (you'll see that as a theme), and the BEST feature of this is the neck skirt.  That means this neck protection won't a.) move around and leave your skin exposed, and b.) it's not so small that it really doesn't cover your neck.  I'm telling you - the little things make  huge difference.

Groin protection....yeaaaaah.  Awkward to talk about, nice to have.  Made of Cordura, easy to put on and take off, and yeaaaah...keeps everything safe.

If you look at the picture, the chest protector kind of speaks for itself, but here are a few details worth noting - made of Cordura, hook-and-loop on the shoulders and sides so it fits pretty much anyone, built to function and feel like a real duty vest, light-weight, and complete with a foam core for protection.


Lastly, the marking knife.  If you are an airsofter, you know a 'knife kill' can be intense and invigorating.
 Well, here's your chance.  This knife comes with the marking compound so you know when you actually get someone.  It's one piece of plastic with a sheath that you can attach to your person.  

Today's post is just an overview so take it in and think about it.  Next post - you'll see the kit on and I'll talk about how it feels and works.  Stay tuned!
- Carp

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Rothco Soft Shell Tactical M65 Jacket

Well, here's the dealy-yo.  I posted a review of some Rothco pants a while back and Rothco caught wind of that review.  So they contacted me and we talked about another review.  We landed - as you can see - on this bad boy - the M65 Soft Shell Jacket.  Let's start off with some specs:
- The color for this one: sage
- Cost: MSRP $98.99
- What I see it being sold for: low $50s into the higher $70s
- Water-resistant
- 4 pockets
- Shell: polyester
- Lining: fleece
- Concealed hood
- Zip-up front with 'storm flap'
- Drawstring waist

Now let's talk about my experience with this one.

First thing I'll note is that this style is (as they note on their website HERE) a classic old-school style jacket with new-school technology.  These soft shells are easier to find these days so the price to get one is getting more reasonable.

Collar - With the hood kept inside (which is how I usually roll) it's 'filled' and thus is insulated from the cold. There is also a hook-and-loop tag on the left-hand side of the collar that can be pulled across to the right side to really seal up the collar for extra warmth and to keep the wind out.  

As is often the case, expect the hood is easier to get out than to put back in.  

Pockets - large and in charge. There should be plenty of storage space for you when you add all 4 of these pockets together.  They close with a very (and I mean VERY) secure snap in the middle.

There are no slit pockets in the front, and while I like the storage space, I like the slit pockets more, so if I had my way, I would add some, but that's just me.  Still, plenty of space for your stuff and your hands.

Zip-up front with a storm flap.  "Storm flap?  Are you serious?"  Totally.  I get the skepticism, but it really does make a difference, and if you disagree, talk to all the outdoor companies who include them in their winter jackets.  It does keep the breeze and chill out.  Well-played, Rothco.

On the shoulder, you've got these...things.  Officially they are called epaulets and they were for military officials and such as a sign of rank or power, but they've kept them on many jackets.  They look kind of cool in my opinion, and you also can cram something under them if you'd like to (a hat, glove, etc.).

The sleeves can be cuffed and controlled with the hook-and-loop included, and it says on Rothco's website the hook-and-loop is for attaching gloves.  Not totally sure how, so I'll check in and get some more details on that, but I can say that they will easily cover your gloves and thus keep the snow and rain from getting up your sleeve.

Inside you've got some fleece to keep you warm.  That combined with the soft shell outside does a nice job at keeping the elements out.  Additionally, there is a drawstring included so you can tighten it up even more.

Here's a look at the back.

So concluding thoughts...
1. Cool looking - old-and-new school all in one
2. Like most soft shells, this one is built for winter and colder weather use.  Don't rock this if you want to go out in late spring or summer.
3. The sage is a cool color.  Supposedly they have it in OD, Tan, and Black, but mine is sage for sure.  Look around for the color you like best.
4. For the price, this one is pretty unique.  There are other soft shells out there but in my research this is the only one with this look.

Now go and rock it like a champ.
- Carp