GI’s (general infantrymen) have been modifying their gear as long as they have been bitching about their Officers. I am not an expert in every gear hacking enterprise. So I invite every reader to post about their favorite gear mods.
Tactical Gear Hacker Skills
Imagination: Guess what. Everything is open to being hacked. All your gear can be modified. I won’t be able to cover everything here.
Sewing: The military taught me sewing… no they didn’t have a class on it. It is just something you pick up. For me it is useful as a medic and a gear hacker. Ask someone how to sew. Being able to repair and modify your gear makes sewing an essential skill. For tactical Nylon I would pick up a tent repair kit and some sailing needles if nothing else. Sewing may not seem all that manly but Tactical Tailors was started by a Sniper who modified and reinforced GI gear in his barracks room.
Painting: Spray painting your gear is essential to good camouflage. So get some flat earth tone colors that manage your environment. Most major brands of spray paint have special camo paint available.
Knot Tying: You should know how to tie at least a square knot, clove hitch, prusik, figure 8 from memory. If you have a smart phone there is a cool app that Columbia makes called “What Knot to do in the Outdoors” down load it.
Dying: Clothing dye is cheap at Wal-Mart. If you are an Army vet like me and you have a shit ton of UCP AKA ACU pattern gear you might need to dye that shit. Most tactical nylon are selling their ACU pattern shit at a discount because it sucks so bad.
Re purposing: This is using something for a task other than it’s intended purpose. Example. Your Standard GI canteen pouch… can carry grenades and 500 ml IV bags. Which is good because most grenade pouches can expose the pins… Not something you want to find out that the tree you just walked pass snagged from your gear.
Re-purposing saves money big time. If you master nothing else master re purposing. SKED litters… cost a metric shit ton. Deer sleds that do the same thing… 40 bucks at most sporting goods stores. Dear are typically man-sized animals. The one I got is the smaller one and it fits someone up to 6′ tall.and that is good enough for government work.
3D Printing: I can’t fake the funk I know dick about 3D printing. I know how to make 3D CAD files and that is about it. But it looks cool.
Rotatory Tool: If you want to modify gear… OWN A FREAKING DREMEL or similar product.
Welding: I also know dick about welding: Less of a dick than I know about 3D printing.
Soldering: Okay, so if you want to modify electronics or anything with wires you have to learn to solder. It is easy to get started. You can learn from the internet I am sure if you don’t already know. Go to Radio Shack to get the supplies.
Tactical Gear Resources:
Make: and Craft: magazines: There are makers who can build a $40 dollar night vision device… yeah cool huh. Check their site out or on the news stands. http://makezine.com/
- Ranger Digest: http://www.survivaloutdoorskills.com/
- County Comm: http://countycomm.com
- ITS Tactical: ITS has so many good gear mods and skills… just go to their main site when you are done. http://www.itstactical.com/topics/intellicom/diy/
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