Never tried it before.
After getting a bit miffed at my continued slowness with flapped magazine pouches – and increasingly pissed off with the mess that is the Taco – I thought I’d try some Kydex.
For me, the company most synonymous with Kydex is ESSTAC; but I could only find their pouches locally, accessorised with MALICE clips. The market has moved on and I wanted something slicker. Hypalon-backed slick, if possible.
ESSTAC themselves do sell WTF Hypalon-backed Kydex pouches, but it’s a ballache ordering from the US and I don’t do it any more unless absolutely necessary.
I had a cursory sift beyond ESSTAC, but nothing looked quite right. I even ordered and then returned another company’s Kydex product without using it, because I didn’t think it had been sufficiently thought-through.
S23’s recommendation is always enough for me, but after that – now tuned-in to the Kydex wave band – I kept hearing more and more positive things about artisanal Kydex perfection…with one caveat:
Strap in, because there’s a long wait.
And indeed there was.
Well, I say long. Longer than we expect, nowadays, even when warned up front that there’s a long wait.
That being said, I also experienced some of the best customer service ever. John – who is Predator Gear Inc. – turned a difficult situation into a very good vibe indeed.
He really does give a shit about his customers and will go to great lengths to make sure they are well looked after.
Predator Gear Inc.’s building block is the MUKI, or Multi-Use Kydex Insert. It’s a really nicely formed unit.
Its external faces are covered in hook velcro and it has ‘ears’ on both sides of its mouth. The ears can hook under PALS channels for extra security, but my experience with the JPC is that the velcro is easily enough. The ears do make it more adaptable though.
Here’s a MUKI in the Kangaroo Insert. The MUKI is black:
Here’s what the MUKI looks like from the side:
With a Tackleberry Super Float RS Pmag inserted (you can use other mags)…
If you can’t see how it works, then it’ll be even more magical when you buy one.
Suffice to say the hour glass silhouette and springy nature of the Kydex (the mouth of which is limited in expansion by the pouch within which it sits) retains a mag when inserted.
So, it’s a firm push of the mag into the pouch and a firm tug getting it out; taking care not to smack yourself in the face, like I’ve done at least once today.
Ranger Plates certainly make mag retrieval easier, so I’m glad I invested in some.
You can convert pretty much any single-stacked mag pouch into a Kydex-retention monster with a MUKI.
They are sold separately, but I got mine with the bits I bought.
Kangaroo Insert, top; Jackal MRS Triple below:
I wish the Kangaroo Insert had a cool name like The Jackal does. Kangaroos aren’t cool.
Anyway, the Kangaroo Insert is a triple M4 mag carrier which fits into the kangaroo pocket of plate carriers like the Crye JPC.
Its frame is laser cut 500D, which has velcro in all the right places to mate with both the MUKI and the JPC’s pocket.
It’s really, really nicely made. Almost a shame to cover it up.
Here’s how I eventually manoeuvred the Kangaroo Insert into my JPC:
- Remove the shock cord and other shit from the top of the JPC’s kangaroo pocket
- Remove the central MUKI from the 500D frame
- Get a decent quality poly bag. I used a thick-ish, clear zip-loc bag so I could see what I was doing in the next stage. The bag needs to be big enough to fit the Kangaroo Insert into
- Cut through the sides of the bag and trim them, so you create a sleeve for the outer face of the Insert. (You’re basically creating an area denial weapon, which prevents the velcro controlling the kangaroo battle space)
- Slide the Kangaroo Insert into the pouch, using the velcro-defeating poly bag-sleeve
- Adjust the direction of the remaining two MUKIs so they don’t foul the pocket’s elastic dividers on the way in
- Once pushed into place, remove the sleeve. The velcro can now do its thing
- Make a similar sleeve for the central MUKI and insert that into the Kangaroo insert (which is now firmly installed in the kangaroo pouch)
- Remove that sleeve, too
This wasn’t the first method I tried and I almost had to write a haiku about the simultaneous blessing/curse duality of velcro, to calm down.
The only other thing I’d add to the list above is a strong cup of tea. This is fucking essential. I tried coffee first, and it was shit. Only the liquid-heroin that is the UK national drink is up to this empire-level task.
Jackal MRS Triple
This one is named slightly confusingly for us Brits (or me, anyway). MRS looks like ‘missus’, so I keep wanting to call the pouch, Mrs. Triple Jackal.
In actual fact, MRS here stands for Magazine Retention System.
Again, this is really, really nicely made and has everything I was looking for.
Hypalon backing. Fuck you, MALICE clips!
Open bottom to let debris/water out…but not too open, because that may let debris in, pollute your mags and send you to chopping hell.
You can see the curve at the bottom of the MUKI here, which is great because it gives just enough clearance to stop the BB (or mag follower) touching the base.
I’m a bit OCD about that as you can probably tell.
Mrs. Jackal is much easier to install, but remove the MUKIs first, for ease.
Here’s how they both look, stacked on the JPC:
View from the top:
Yes. I think that’s enough mags.
I’ll be keeping the mags in the Kydex until the next game I can get to, to loosen things up a bit.
Lastly, a big thanks to John at Predator Gear Inc. He really looked after me and builds an excellent product.