'SMALL SIZE...BIG PROTECTION' LBX TACTICAL 0300S MULTICAM

Over the last few years as a person of small stature in the sport, one of the biggest hurdles I’ve faced is finding tactical kit that fits - plate carriers! However whilst in the US last year, I discovered a brand that not only makes high quality, mil-spec kit but has created a carrier to cater for smaller operators! The brand is LBX Tactical and the carrier is the Small Modular Plate Carrier 0300S.


 Firstly, who are LBX? LBX are named after their parent company London Bridge Trading (or LBT as they are more commonly known), who are a Virginia based tactical kit manufacturer. LBX stands for London Bridge "X", the X in the name stands for the unknown variable, and this represents the multitude of possibilities within the tactical world that their kit can be utilised for. LBX was conceived as a tactical brand that would create mil-spec gear that combines modern design and versatility. Whether you're current or ex-military, a PMC or an airsofter like myself, LBX Tactical aims to offer a huge variety of products made for tactical situations that mix and match for endless custom load-out capabilities.



The Small Modular Plate Carrier or 0300S as it’s known in the community is the smaller version of their popular Modular Plate Carrier. It has modular webbing on the front panel, back panel, and cummerbund meaning you can custom the carrier on all sides with various pouches and panels. The top rows of webbing on the front have hook Velcro to allow operators to add their favourite patches (and we all know that airsofters LOVE their patches, myself included!)

Although the 0300S doesn’t come with plates included, it can accommodate 8x10 plates. I have so far chosen to run both of mine without plates so far, but I am thinking of picking up a couple of foam SAPI plates to help keep its shape when not in use. The carrier also has a heavy-duty drag handle which I feel is more applicable for real-world application than airsoft and hydration/comms guides on the front and rear panels to keep your drinking system and communications looking tidy and to prevent any loose cables being snagged during use!

The carrier is fully adjustable with the cummerbund being adjustable between 32" and 46", my waist is 29” and it fits pretty snug but still gives me enough wiggle room to wear it over a softshell or hoodie. The cummerbund has Velcro closure so the carrier can be securely fastened. The 0300S also has adjustable shoulder straps so you can adjust where it sits on the torso. The straps both have padded strap coverings which makes them comfortable to wear for extended periods of time even when the carrier is loaded up with mags and other gear. So it’s adjustable, but how does it fit? This is the main selling point for me, I’ve found very few plate carriers that can comfortably fit my small frame and contour my waist and chest but the 0300S does the job. As I’ve said, the cummerbund fits my waist pretty snug but still leaves me enough room to be worn over a light jacket or hoodie. The overall size looks/feels right on my torso and without plates it fits the contours of my body. Would it fit as well with plates? I think if SAPI training plates were inserted and worn in, the carrier would still fit the contours of my form but it could be a little bulky when they were fresh.


The LBX Small Modular Plate Carrier or 0300S comes in a variety of different camouflages and block colours including MultiCam, MAS Grey, Black, Coyote and Wolf Grey. It retails for $159.95, which is around £114 to us Brits from LBX although it is worth noting that shipping and customs charges are applicable when it reaches the UK so that is another element to think about. What is great is that the camo options are the same price as the block colourways which isn’t always the case with gear manufacturers. The price, in my opinion, is really reasonable for the quality and fit, especially when compared with other manufacturers.

My LBX MultiCam 0300S has replaced my Warrior Assault Systems Recon PC in the Shooters Cut as my go-to tan team tactical vest because of how well it fits! So far I’ve customised it with a Warrior Assault Systems One point sling, a Warrior Assault Systems Triple Open Mag Panel and also the Ferro Concepts Dangler pouch. Like I said, I’ll more than likely be adding SAPI training plates to the carrier too in the next coming months! I really like the aesthetic of the carrier and its versatility!

Overall, I think LBX have done a fantastic job on the 0300S in regards to the range of colours/camo that it is available in, the quality of the materials used, its overall size and versatility! I’m also ecstatic to see brands catering to smaller players as finding well-fitting tactical kit is something that I and others have struggled with. My only complaint with the LBX range is that it can be quite hard or expensive to get a hold of in the UK, I would love to see the LBX brand and products more readily available in the UK for our player base!

Hardwick, K. (2018). Small Size...Big Protection. Airsoft Action. 87 (June ), 38-39.

WISPORT SPARROW 20 II RUCKSACK REVIEW!

Hey everyone!

Welcome back to the blog and to the next instalment of Project Crete! In this post I’m going to give you the lowdown on the backpack I used for War Zone 6 in Arkadi, Crete! Released in 2016 as part of Wisport’s new collection of survival packs, the Sparrow 20 II Rucksack was developed as a part of a collaboration between Wisport and Polish Military Forces to optimise carrying space whilst still being compact and comfortable for the end user. To match our loadout, we opted for Pencott Greenzone.


The Sparrow 20 II is a 20L pack, made from 500D Cordura Nylon. It has two roomy, independent chambers that are both secured with tough Wisport branded zippers and multiple MOLLE attachment points. The main compartment has a two-way clamshell zip opening, two internal zipped mesh pockets, a hydration sleeve that is fully Camelback compatible (there is a hook to attach a hydration bladder and a passage hole for the hydration hose) and four internal attachment points for security. The front admin compartment features the same two-way clamshell zip opening, sleeve organiser pockets, elastic loops, a zipped mesh pocket and a D-Ring/carabiner to keep your keys safe!




The front of the pack has a loop Velcro panel for identification patches, a zipped pocket with zipper track cover. The front and side panels are also covered in MOLLE which allows the user to mount a variety of MOLLE accessories such as first aid kits and other pouches and numerous Nylon straps permit the attachment of much bigger items such as compressed sleeping bags and roll mats. This means that the overall carrying capacity is a lot greater than the nominal 20 litres stated.

What other features does it have? Well hold onto your seats because it just keeps on giving - it has a durable top carrying handle, adjustable shoulder straps with loops, elastic bands and hydration hose mounting brackets with redesigned dirt resistant padding on back and shoulder straps for added comfort, the ACS (Air Comfort System) quick detach carrying system, chest strap with quick release buckle, strengthened back section, sewn-in hip belt attachment points, side and front compression straps, bottom attachments for optional compression straps.

It retails for £79.95 from Military 1st and comes in an extensive range of camouflage options/colourways including Pencott Greenzone, ATACS-AU, Polish Woodland, Pencott Snowdrift, Pencott Badlands, Olive Green, MultiCam, Graphite, Coyote, Black, ATACS-LE, ATACS-iX and RAL 7013 so there are plenty of options even if you wanted it for casual everyday use rather than airsoft. It also has a 5-year manufacturer’s warranty which is great value!

DIRECT ACTION HURRICANE HYBRID CHEST RIG REVIEW!

Hey everyone!

Welcome back to the blog, and to another instalment of the Project Crete series! In this post, I’m going to review my chest rig of choice for War Zone 6 – the Hurricane Hybrid Chest Rig from Direct Action in Pencott Greenzone!


It is a low profile, adjustable rig made from laser-cut laminated, 500D Cordura so you know it’s built to endure tough environments! The softshell interior construction also makes it a comfortable rig to wear for extended periods of time. The harness is well constructed and feels sturdy even when the rig is loaded up. It has a reinforced drag handle which is more applicable to real-world scenarios rather than airsoft but it’s a handy feature.


Not only is it comfortable and well-constructed in general but it is also full to brim with essential pouches including integrated, adjustable mag pouches with paracord retention that adjust to fit: eight (!) AR mags, four AK mags or even four SR magazines. It also includes a number of fixed external pouches for other mission essentials: two adjustable pouches, a sealed zipper pouch and a Velcro flap pouch for when you need to access items quickly.

What I really like about the Hurricane is that you aren’t just limited to the pouches on the chest rig! As it not only features the integrated and fixed pouches but 9 PALS slots on the sides of the rig which are perfect for radio, medical, utility pockets and horizontal PALS slots under the ammo pouches for items such as tourniquets, pistol mag pouches and 40mm pouches etc. If you choose to run comms, the fixed pouches are a great size for a Baofeng radio and the rig has comms/antenna routing to keep everything tidy and prevent wires getting caught.



Is it easy to adjust to fit? The harness is completely adjustable via the buckles and to keep the excess material tidy it has Velcro wraparound straps – bonus! It has a split front, zipper design as well so you don’t need to adjust it every time you remove it which is really handy. After adjusting, I found it fit well and was comfortable to wear even when loaded up with mags and radios. My only gripe was that the laser cut material was quite rough and did rub my inner arms when I was only wearing a t-shirt because of the hot weather. I didn’t have this issue wearing my combat shirt and I suspect it was because it was brand new, out of the packet. I would expect the material to soften over time and this to subside.

The Hurricane comes in a fair few different camouflage options including Adaptive Green, Black, Coyote Brown, Crye MultiCam, Pencott Badlands, Pencott Greenzone and Urban Grey so there is a camo option for. How much does it retail for? €239 which is around £210 at the current exchange rate so it is pretty pricey but the quality definitely warrants the price in my opinion. 

Patrons: Oskar Engstrom, James Smith & David Harris.

PROJECT CRETE: WARZONE 6 PENCOTT GREENZONE LOADOUT!

Hey everyone!

Welcome back to the blog! Also my apologies for being so quiet the last week or so, life caught up with me on my return from Crete so I had to take a few days out but I'm back and ready to drop 6 new blog posts! Today I'm going to run through my WarZone 6: Pencott Greenzone loadout that you've been seeing on my social media over the last few days! For WarZone 6 we played on the United Nations team and needed a suitable loadout up for the task, check it out below:


My friends over at Military 1st very kindly sent over the Helikon-Tex CPU combat shirt and combat trousers in our camo of choice Pencott Greenzone! I'll be doing a separate review on these at a later date but you can check out the process of tailoring these to fit here!


For my gun, I used an E&L AKS-74U kindly supplied to me by Nuprol!


My chest rig for the weekend was the Hurricane Chest Rig by Direct Action! I'll be doing a full review of this soon too!





To carry all my bits and bobs, the Wisport Sparrow 2.0 in Pencott Greenzone from Military 1st


Keep your eyes peeled for the upcoming reviews!

FEMME FATALE'S OP ESSENTIALS 2018!

Hey everyone!

Welcome back to the blog!

So with my trip to Crete looming ever closer to attend Warzone 6, I thought it would be the right time to update my ‘Femme Fatale Airsoft’s Op Essentials’ kit list. Back in 2016, I put together a list of tried and tested items that I felt I could swear by on Ops lasting more than 24 hours and 2 years later I’ve decided it needed a little sprucing up and updating! 

Over the last couple of years I’ve played MilSims in both the UK and USA so I’ve got more experience dealing with environments of all kinds. There's no getting around the fact that MilSim style Ops are different for women, we have different needs to men and this is reflected in the kit that we take. My toiletry bag for MilSim style Ops is entirely based on comfort - during a long Op I want to be as comfortable as possible (or as comfortable as the Op will allow me to be!)


First on the list has to be dry shampoo! There are so many brands out there but my go-to is Batiste. It is by far the best dry shampoo I have used and they have a comprehensive range of dry shampoos for different hair colours, different looks and also a huge range of fragrances to choose from - I am really taken by the tropical scent! I like to wear my hair in French plaits for Ops to keep my hair out of the way and it makes it more manageable. Wearing a helmet and the rain/wind can quickly bring about greasy locks which is not only uncomfortable but not amazing for your skin. I keep this in my toiletry bag to freshen up my hair during MilSims/weekenders.

Image: Amazon



Micellar cleansing water was something relatively new to the beauty industry when I first put this list together but, 2 years on and it has become a staple item in not only my Milsim toiletry bag but my regular toiletry bag too. Micellar water is perfect when there isn't any running water to cleanse your face ie camping and Ops! This miracle liquid gets the dirt and grease out of your pores and doesn't need to be washed off so it's super convenient. As the product I use is hypoallergenic it can be used on the eyes and lips as well. I always carry a pack of cotton wool pads with this. It leaves my face feeling clean and fresh without having to splash cold water all over my face in the morning. My favourite brand for this is Garnier and it is available in different sizes and also for different skin types!

Image: Amazon




Johnson's baby wipes are a great all-around item that can be used to remove makeup (even from the eyes as they're so gentle), as hygiene wipes and also to give your body a quick wipe down during an Op. Even when there are no showers, I still want to feel fresh and not smell like roadkill! And Trust me after 15-16 hours in the field there is nothing better than wiping your feet down with one of these bad boys and putting on a pair of fresh socks! I also use them to clean my gear and shoes. Buying in bulk is always cheaper I've found with these!

Image: Amazon



Another product from Johnson's brand that is really useful is their baby powder (or talc!) I've picked up a lot of tips and tricks over my time in Airsoft and this is still one of the golden ones! Talc has multiple uses during an op - if you have no dry shampoo, rub some talc in your hands and massage into your scalp, this will instantly freshen your hair up! Another use for this is when your feet are cold and wet, massage some talc onto them - it'll dry them out wonderfully and leave them smelling fresh.

Image: www.looptt.com


I carry this item in my purse wherever I go after a particularly brutal stint on Roaccutane (acne medication) always left my lips incredibly dry, often cracking and bleeding. This was an absolute miracle worker for those 10 months I was on the medication and I've found that even though my lips are now back to normal, the prolonged cold and wind exposure at MilSim events can cause my lips to become dry, chapped which can lead to cracking and Vaseline helps keeps them moisturised and eases discomfort. The lip therapy pocket size containers are more convenient they are a little more expensive than the regular Vaseline tubs.

Image: Vaseline



I use this in my daily skin care routine because it is light, absorbs quickly and helps prevent spots and blemishes which can have a nasty habit of turning up after ops! It keeps my skin hydrated and feeling soft. It's oil-free and won’t clog pores which is fab for those of us with blemish prone skin!

Image: Clean & Clear


 Garnier Mineral UltraDry 48 Hour Antiperspirant

This is probably my favourite antiperspirant for everyday wear and it holds up well during skirmishes/MilSims! It has a clean fragrance, leaves my underarms feeling fresh and lasts for up to 48 hours (perfect if you accidentally leave it at home over the weekend). As it’s a roll on rather than a spray it means I'm not choking my teammates out in our room/tents!


Image: eBay


This is by far one of the most useful Op purchases I have made. Never in my life did I think I'd be using a Shewee, let alone writing a blog post about one! These ingenious inventions are perfect for when there are no portaloos (or portaloos that are so awful you can't bring yourself to go in!), or you just simply don’t fancy removing your clothes to pee as it’s just too cold. I purchased my Shewee extreme from Amazon for £11, the regular Shewee comes without the case and extension tube but I found the tube really useful. It's best to train yourself in the shower to use these as the risk of the funnel overflowing is real! Cleaning them at events can be tricky, but I carry a 500ml bottle of water mixed with Dettol to clean it properly!

Image: Amazon


Tissues

One thing I make sure I have in my kit now is packaged tissues, after being caught out by Portaloos that have ran out of loo roll! These are really useful for when there’s no toilet paper or the cold/wet is giving you a runny nose (wiping your nose with your hands is both unhygienic and will make the skin around your nose sore)

Hand Sanitiser

This one is pretty self-explanatory, but when there’s no access to running water/soap to clean your hands after using the toilet and before you eat, this stuff is a GOD-SEND! 




If you have any Op tips and essential products, leave them in the comments below! I'd love to hear them!

This post contains affiliate links, as I am a member of the Amazon Associates Program - an affiliate advertising program that provides a means for me to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com to products I have used, tested, trust and recommend.
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