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PostPosted: Mon May 17, 2010 11:27 am 
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AA1PR’s Large Molle Rucksack Project

Here is my large molle ruck sack project. The normal or standard size is referred to the Rifleman pack while the large is considered to be the 10th mountain division pack. There are so many different versions and so many posts of this type of pack by others on this forum. It is one of those love or hate things. All I have seen here are of the standard configuration with the main pack and the sleep carrier system, which is the rifleman configuration. Unlike the standard capacity of 3000 CI for the rifleman, the large is 4000 cubic inches. The sleeping bag system is built in and the top flap cover is mesh as opposed to the see through vinyl, and it also no storm flap. This is something I may have added later if it proves to be problematic. Oh yeah the standard is supposed to handle 120 lbs and the large 150 lbs. I would think this relates to the tensile strength of the material? One would have to be crazy to hump these loads. I am sure maybe someone some where has but not me personally.

I personally from a back injury can not tolerate an internal frame pressing/rubbing on my middle to low back. So this fitted my needs and was cheap to do. Just in case one is wondering. I tried a CFP90 once and felt like t was rolling on my back all the time. I would really maybe love a spear UM21 pack down the road…if.

I have always wanted one in large but it seems all I could ever find is the ACU or DCU versions and never woodland. So I decided to get it one piece at a time, if it was the only way to do so & I did. So EBay is where I began my search. Like I said, I wanted everything in the woodland pattern. My project cost me $90 when all was said and done. Or get it on EBay for around $60 all assembled in DCU. I do not think that is too bad. I think with the pals webbing and the capacity of this should fit all my hunting or potential backpacking needs nicely. It provides the modularity that one needs. The color may be weird for hiking purposes though, but I will do it regardless. Remember this is no Kifaru or high priced technical pack, but a readily available option. I know many of you are saying why not ACU or another pattern, but I know from experience that woodland is very effective in our hardwoods and around our wooded mountain wetlands. Plus it matches the rest of my system.

I got the pack knowing it had two small holes for $40 including shipping, more on that later. I thought that was an acceptable price as this pack alone from other retailers goes for $150 new plus shipping. You can also tighten up the main pack vertical compression straps by the upper & lower, so you now have 2 adjustments as shown.
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Shoulder straps, I was lucky enough to also get the glider straps with this set up. Seems like woodland is hard to get and these cost me $25 with shipping. DCU is the cheapest and ACU is also higher yet. The glider straps allow you to adjust the weight from the hips to the shoulders or vice versa.
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Waist belt/hip pad I think this and the frame were the cheapest things to get. About $12@ including shipping. I tried to get all of my components of VG (very good) to like new condition. The frame was NEW!!!
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For the frame I opted for a new Gen IV in tan. Tan is used for the DCU & Woodland rucks, while green is used with ACU. In case one needs to know. I will run a bit of sandpaper or Scotchbrite around the edge of the frame to reduce its reflective abilities. Amazing just how much of a sheen can be seen from these. Plus these frames are supposed to be able of supporting 200 lbs if memory serves me correctly. If you need to know about the different models of frames I have seen several nice postings on this subject alone in this forum somewhere.
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Back to the issues of the ruck. Mine had two small holes that needed repair, so I ShoeGoo’d them. This stuff is flexible, waterproof and works in the cold even. I figured that the repair should be done on the inside of the ruck where the water resistant material was for better adhesion. Light orange circles show the areas that needed attention & were fixed. Each spot was maybe a 1/8” in diameter. I am sure I could have used it as is perfectly fine. But since I was fixing everything I might as well do these. One hole was on the backside and the other was on the top flap cover. I also ran my lighter over the small loose threads (fraying) that were on the pals webbing and in a few other places on the pack. I thought it would better than having a thread come lose or being pulled out when least expected. The draw cord for the top of the pack has the old alice system tightener. I like that better than the newer barrel locks that break so dang easily. The draw strings are positioned that the lock is on the right side of the pack I moved this so it would be in the center now. I think I may move it so it locks on the left side since I am right handed, for ease of use sake. My rough measurements of the top portion of the pack are 20x17x9 which equals about 3060 cubic inches. The lower portion measures about 17x9x12 or equals about 1836 cubic inches. So that would put this pack around 4500 +/- and with the sustainment pouches over the 5000 CI mark. Not bad!
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Here is the large next to the standard molle ruck for comparison purposes with out frames and stuffed with some clothes to try to get them filled up somewhat. The old standard molle ruck (spare) I use in the boat and possibly in the future in the pulk I want to build. These make great storage bags and what not.
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I also wanted to replace the zipper pulls. The original zipper pulls were maybe 3 inches long and of a soft webbing material that slipped from your hand very easily. I did a posting showing how one can do this. The link to that is here: viewtopic.php?f=34&t=63888&p=1366542#p1366542
Old zipper pulls
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New ones installed, which I feel improves upon the design!
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Here is the top of ruck looking down towards the sleep portion. I have it zipped shut in this picture. It is maybe a bit larger then the standard molle ruck. I feel the sleep bag portion is definitely bigger for FYI also if you look at my approximate measurements. This was/is the weakest link of the system I felt in the past with the smaller standard molle rifleman ruck. What I do not see in my ruck and is not all that important to me, is that there are supposed to be 4 D-rings for the installation of the radio pouch. IN my standard molle ruck I use it for things like carabineers, climbing rope and ice cleats. Also on the inside bottom there are 4 Velcro sections that help to secure the flaps. The grommets there serve another purpose of which I do not know, maybe someone does? They are staggered from each flap section; maybe with paracord, one could lock these tight? Of course there are the pals webbing areas so one may attach the sustainment pouches on the upper side portions of the ruck. Which I will do before we are done.
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Sleep carrier opening hopefully shows just how much larger it is overall. This will hopefully allow me to get the MSS in & out easily. Or in warmer climates a light bag and hammock.
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Compression straps are around the top portion of the pack and two are provided on each side. Like the standard molle ruck when the sustainment pouches are added these loop through them, to also to secure the load. [Here you can see the fraying of the threads I mentioned prior.]
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Pals webbing, I felt this was a bonus and welcome addition over the standard molle ruck. There are these rows of pals webbing on each side bottom. Notice there is the larger webbing left over from the alice system in there also. I would think, so one can have some backwards compatibility. I think that is a nice feature to have, even though it will go unused for me.
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Here are the pals webbing on the front of the pack which I consider more than enough. Five larger rows instead of those 2 small rows of the standard ruck. I might now add my hydration system back there…and who only knows what else.
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To assemble it I started with the waist belt & then the shoulder straps. The pack goes on afterwards. I attach the waist belt first starting in the bottom slots on the frame and go up 2 and then there as shown in the picture. The waist belt should be positioned on the hips comfortably. Now onto the shoulder straps.

Wear the pack & you will be able to almost instantly feel it is not right and needs change.
One should adjust the shoulder straps so they fit entirely over the shoulders in a comfortable fashion as best as I can describe. Think of the back of the shoulder pads resting on the blade of your shoulders, if that helps. Here is my setup that feels comfortable for me. One should adjust these according to their torso length. I will not go into detail as to how one assembles it as Down East Inc will provide that information on their site for free. I feel the hardest part of this is adjusting the long tension strap after the side straps are secured.
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I like to attach the lower portion of the shoulder straps right above the waist belt.
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Here are the 2 ways in which the pack is attached to the frame. At the top of the frame is the ladder lock attachment ( I hope that’s the right name) which is self explanatory. The 6 lower attachment points use the folded webbing in the shape of a T web fold. These are inserted in the frame through the appropriate slots/holes. I feel it is easier to start with the bottom t web folds and work your way to the top. When done your pack is ready!
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Here is how I attached the glider straps front & back. I also fold the webbing back over the buckle and slide the excess through the frame to neat up the ends from hanging out.
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Here is my old but in excellent like new not yet used molle II rifleman all set up and ready to go! I have yet to use this one as we speak.
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Finally here is my finished ruck. I have yet to find my sustainment pouches and add them to this also.
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I want to add maybe a couple of large pouches to the back and if you have suggestions please let me know. I looked into the Maxpedition but have never used their locking clip devices and I am unsure just how well these stand up or last? I want to be able to access them from the out of the pack for say like an IFAK or fire kit. Things I do not want to keep rumbling through the pack for. Any help, comments or criticism is welcome.

Again I feel these packs are a viable option to get into the outdoors for an economical option and should outlast myself.


Last edited by aa1pr on Wed Mar 09, 2011 6:30 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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PostPosted: Mon May 17, 2010 11:59 am 
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Nice set up. I have used them before. You can also pick up the black frames if you want. The black frames that are on the market are usually Molle Is. You may hear that they are not as prone to break as Molle II. But if you are not dropping your pack from 100 feet out of a chopper it doesnt really matter.

You can also add sustainment pouches on each side of the pack. That will enhance your storage capacity greatly. The main pack is roomy. Is does not have as much room inside as a Lg Alice pack but it has more than a medium alice.

You can also add a radio pouch on the inside of the main pack. They clip in and are great to put a hydration bladder in. This way you don't have to buy a camel bak. Drop the hydration bladder in and run your tube out the top of your pack and attach the mouth piece to your shoulder strap.

The outside pouch on the main pack was desinged for claymores and a 3 mag bandoler pouch. The bandoler 3 mag pouch will clip into that pouch. If you look inside you will see two black inserts on each side upper left and right.

You can also get a patrol pack that has its own back pack straps that will fit on top of the main pack.

I do suggest using some scotch guard or water proof tent spray on the pack. From what I see in the pic it probaly dates to the mid to later 90s. The NSN number inside the components can tell you. Its the middle number that stands alone.

Cool set up.

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PostPosted: Mon May 17, 2010 1:47 pm 
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silversam wrote:
Nice set up. I have used them before. You can also pick up the black frames if you want. The black frames that are on the market are usually Molle Is. You may hear that they are not as prone to break as Molle II. But if you are not dropping your pack from 100 feet out of a chopper it doesnt really matter.

You can also add sustainment pouches on each side of the pack. That will enhance your storage capacity greatly. The main pack is roomy. Is does not have as much room inside as a Lg Alice pack but it has more than a medium alice.

You can also add a radio pouch on the inside of the main pack. They clip in and are great to put a hydration bladder in. This way you don't have to buy a camel bak. Drop the hydration bladder in and run your tube out the top of your pack and attach the mouth piece to your shoulder strap.

The outside pouch on the main pack was desinged for claymores and a 3 mag bandoler pouch. The bandoler 3 mag pouch will clip into that pouch. If you look inside you will see two black inserts on each side upper left and right.

You can also get a patrol pack that has its own back pack straps that will fit on top of the main pack.

I do suggest using some scotch guard or water proof tent spray on the pack. From what I see in the pic it probaly dates to the mid to later 90s. The NSN number inside the components can tell you. Its the middle number that stands alone.

Cool set up.


Thanks.

I have broke a black frame so I wanted the newest version for this one.

I have the sustainment pouches but have yet to fiind them so I can install them... This pack is missing the 4 d rings where you would install the radio pouch. No big deal in my opinion, but nice idea about the bladder there.

For the small pocket on the rifleman I have my two 22 ounce MSR fuel tanks in the old one as they fit nicely. I also have 3 mag bandoler pouch on the old one and have it full of stripper clips as opposed to mags.

I have a patrol pack and forgot to show how that is attached via the frame slots.

I have yet to read the label but I ponder it is just a molle ruck and not a molle II version.

Now just to put it to the test.


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PostPosted: Mon May 17, 2010 3:31 pm 
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Looks like a great set up. I have humped them. I Like the way they keep the load close to your body nice and tight.

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PostPosted: Mon May 17, 2010 10:12 pm 
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damn nice work!!


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PostPosted: Tue May 18, 2010 12:27 pm 
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Great ruck! Looks like the MSS will actually fit in this one. I hadn't thought of using shoe-goo to repair these...good idea! I've been using some sort of adhesive nylon fabric. Combined with shoe-goo I bet it will do the job proper.

Thanks for the post!

Dom.

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PostPosted: Wed May 19, 2010 1:42 pm 
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Finally here is the rifleman ruck on the left & the 10th ruck on the right. They are very close in size to one another. Except the 10th mountain ruck does not protrude out so far in the rear behind the wearer. I still feel it is a battle to get the MSS into either pack. Maybe my problem lies in the fact that I have the Gortex bivy bag in the compression sack with the 2 bags?

Oh yeah in the process of transferring gear from one to the other I miss not having the storm collar on the large already.


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I really need some assistance in choosing some large exterior pouches for the back of this large ruck. I looked into the Maxpedition product line but am not sure of/with the method in which they attach.

Does anyone prefer one brand over another and for what reasons?


Last edited by aa1pr on Tue Jun 01, 2010 7:18 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Wed May 19, 2010 2:09 pm 
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Hey AA1PR i also own the 10th Mtn pack but mine is in acu :(
i would have loved a mulicam one but alas ill have to settle with a Multicam pack cover

good luck and i would also like to add a storm collar.


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PostPosted: Wed May 19, 2010 9:01 pm 
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You can put two more sustainment pouches on the front, between the flap straps.

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PostPosted: Wed May 19, 2010 11:09 pm 
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As seen on the DCU pack topic, I've got the same rig, but in solid coyote brown. On mine I put a trio of 100 round SAW pouches above an LBTech claymore/utility pouch on the back, sustainment pouches on both sides at the top, and 2 qt. canteen carriers on each side at the bottom. I'll probably move the canteen pouches to the hips to better distribute the weight later. For the time being, I put toiletries, camp gadgets, and TP in the SAW pouches while I put rope, my e-tool, tent broom (more of a whisk), tent stakes, hammer, and large IFAK in the claymore pocket. Since LBTech went out of business, the closest thing to their claymore pouch is Emdom's "Fattie", though there may be other similar pouches out there for much less than almost $70. Another alternative is attaching one or two MOLLE II waist packs or waist packs and SAW pouches or any combination that suits you, the end user.

Eventually I need to pick up lighter tent stakes since I still have the heavier steel spikes and a small claw hammer I've used for years, all of which is heavier than necessary. The good thing about my arrangement though is that it frees up all the internal volume for clothes and mummy bag in the center (mummy bag in the sleep system compartment) while I can partially unzip the divider and drop both my tent and self-inflating mattress down each side inside. If I'm out more than three days, though, I need to remove the two and lash them externally for more clothes or cold weather gear. All in all, it's a good setup we've both got.


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 01, 2010 7:17 pm 
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For exterior pouches on the ruck I chose to go with 4 new molle II 100 round saw pouches. I got these off of eBay for $20 with shipping.

I found that I can fit 2 of these on the lower bottom pals webbing on each side. Not sure what I will load into these just yet.
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I still think I may add a molle butt pack to the middle set of pals webbing for things like my rain parka & pants etc. Handy commonly needed items without digging through the main pack mentality.


Last edited by aa1pr on Sat Jun 12, 2010 11:49 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Tue Jun 01, 2010 10:51 pm 
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Yep, SAW pouches work great. Got three of them on my ruck, one each for TP, odds and ends (mostly rope and glowsticks now), and toiletries. I just wish they had adjustable straps.


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PostPosted: Sat Jun 12, 2010 11:42 am 
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So now I just added a pair of waist/fanny packs to the pals webbing on the rear. Each one of these is approximately 350 cubic inches.

Even though they are on the rear of the pack I will only use these for light weight items that need to be accessed easily. I am fearful of the pack extending to far to the rear and throwing me off balance possibly.

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The roll up out of the way when attached so I can still access the sleeping portion nicely.

In a worst case scenario I could use one of these as an E&E bag I suppose.


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 08, 2010 12:37 pm 
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I wanted a way to carry my MSR fuel tanks, but feared that Murphy would cause or leak the gas into the rest of my gear creating havoc. From my research these molle radio pocket pouches would fit a 22oz tank perfectly. So I picked up a pair for under $20 with shipping and now have a perfect method for carrying those risky fuel tanks I feel.

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Here is it shown with fuel tank in the pouch, notice how nice it fits. These pouches are approx. 10x2x4 overall.

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I installed one on each lower side of the ruck where I had a 100 rd saw pouch prior.
I think this will help to keep the weight of the fuel tanks close to my body. And if they leak they leak onto nothing below them…hopefully. I sort of outlined the pouch in yellow.

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Even though I do not have the 11oz tank I believe you could use these pouches with those as the adjustment strap appears to have enough length to provide for that. This is better than having them hang from carabineers or in the ruck or exterior pocket.


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 08, 2010 1:28 pm 
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Looks like a good use for that rather oddly shaped pocket. I recently got one of those radio pouches myself and have been trying to figure the best use for it. I'm still baffled by the double top flap too, though I suppose it must make sense in its original application.

Also like the grenade pouch placement on the hip belt. Looks handy.

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PostPosted: Thu Jul 08, 2010 1:47 pm 
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tensai wrote:
Looks like a good use for that rather oddly shaped pocket. I recently got one of those radio pouches myself and have been trying to figure the best use for it. I'm still baffled by the double top flap too, though I suppose it must make sense in its original application.

Also like the grenade pouch placement on the hip belt. Looks handy.



Yes my magellan GPS fit in that pouch perfectly.


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PostPosted: Fri Jul 09, 2010 1:17 am 
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Good info, as always!

I'd like to hear how the system works out for ya, I've been waiting for one in DCU to test out also... after dye of course. :lol:
Have you had a chance to try the 1606AC frame with the large yet? I see you are still using the gen IV.

Nice system, and I dig that woodland layout.
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 09, 2010 7:39 am 
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I have not made enough progress with physical therapy (low back injury thing) to be able to walk normally let alone carry this ruck yet.

So sorry I can not offer any details just yet.

So far I have just used it like a duffle bag hauling gear as we go car camping, here & there.


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PostPosted: Fri Jul 09, 2010 6:53 pm 
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That sucks, hope you get well soon enough to get out there with it.
Keep us updated.

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PostPosted: Fri Jul 09, 2010 9:49 pm 
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Get well soon aa1pr, Sorry to hear your pain. Hope you have a fast recovery.
Back pain can be the worst of all.
Great bug out bag BTW!

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PostPosted: Fri Jul 16, 2010 11:54 pm 
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Y'know, it just occurred to me that that second top flap on your radio pouches may be to route and hold down the antenna on certain kinds of radios (the walkie-talkie kinds and the like) or direct the input cable for a mic with clicker which can be attached more conveniently elsewhere on a soldier's load bearing rig. I'm liking the use of the frag pouches on the belt and may do that myself eventually. Haven't hiked much with my large ruck, and most of its use so far has been to consolidate and organize my camping gear on trips. Surprisingly, bulky as it is, it holds just about everything and weighs less than 60 lbs with more than a gallon of water in it. Only problem is I need to take a small duffel for clothes if I stay in the field longer than five days...which I've done a few times this year already. Texas' weather tends to be rather unpredictable and I keep both a snugpak intermediate cold mummy bag, pillow, and poncho liner. Individually, either item takes up less room than my original sleeping bag, but together, I'm left with little room for more than three days worth of clothes, sustainment pouches aside.


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 09, 2011 6:27 pm 
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I wanted to add a snow collar to the 10th mountain ruck as I thought they failed in this aspect. So I added a snow collar that was overall 16” high by 58” diameter I started off by figuring out the circumference of the pack it is about 58”. 58”is about as perfect a fit as one could hope for while thread injecting the sewn seam. The material is ripstop cotton in OD. Instead of doing a trial and error run on my woodland ruck. I bought another 10th ruck off eBay for $10 plus shipping, and this time in ACU. I am thinking this will be my pulk bag.
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Here is my finished snow collar ruck next to the standard 10th ruck for comparison purposes. I may add some loops for the straps to run through on the snow collar so it helps to stabilize the upper portion of the ruck when the snow collar is extended. This will be an easy modification.
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 10, 2011 1:31 am 
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Nicely done sir!

The lack of the storm collar on that one is still one of my main gripes about the large ruck, but from what you have shown it looks to be a fairly easy mod. What did you sew that up with?

Do you have any guesstimate as to how much capacity the collar added to the ruck, when used extended?

*T

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 10, 2011 8:40 am 
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6UNF1GHTER wrote:
Nicely done sir!

The lack of the storm collar on that one is still one of my main gripes about the large ruck, but from what you have shown it looks to be a fairly easy mod. What did you sew that up with?

Do you have any guesstimate as to how much capacity the collar added to the ruck, when used extended?

*T


I used my Janone thread injector

I found it easier to turn the ruck inside out and sew in the storm collar that way. just for FYI

I would say the added area is about 8x8x18 so that comes out to about 1172 cubic inches so say around another 1000 CI easily.

Even though the finished dimensions are 8x12x18=1728 CI you lose some space when you pull the opening together and seal up the pack

In the top of the storm/snow collar I had a loop the entire diameter and paracord with a barrel lock in there which may not be shown in the photos. So it is the same as on the rifleman.


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