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Junk on the Bunk: Line 2 Gear

This is a long overdue update on my line 2 gear. I’ve done a lot of changing and learning since I wrote my last article on the subject.

I utilize the line concept to help organize my gear, and for those new to the subject I’ll give a brief overview:

  • Line 1 – Emergency survival equipment, stored in the clothing
  • Line 2 – Fighting and Scouting equipment, stored in some sort of fighting load bearing equipment which supports these two needs
  • Line 3 – Sustainment equipment, typically stored in a back pack

This system provides me with a way to organize what equipment goes where based on my needs. For my line 2 gear I want to restrict it to items specifically for the purposes of scouting and fighting. In the above I utilize the term “Fighting load bearing equipment” and I want to be clear that I am referring to all forms of this equipment, whether it be a chest rig, vest, belt kit, etc. If we can keep the load restricted to only those items we can ensure it is the lightest and most streamlined setup possible, which allows us to fight and maneuver the best we can when necessary. I’ve seen many different forms of fighting load with shelter, chow, and water stored on them and while I admit these items are important for survival I would also argue that in a firefight they are unimportant because your ability to outmaneuver and outshoot your adversary are your only priorities until the fight is over. At that point you can then pick up the pieces and continue on.

As I said there are many different forms of line 2 gear, but the following are the attributes I’m looking for when evaluating a particular piece:

Attributes of line 2 gear
  • Should have capacity to store multiple rifle magazines to facilitate easy reloading when necessary
  • Contains the owners IFAK so that if he is wounded in a fight his team will be able to quickly help him
  • Have an easily accessible tourniquet so that the owner can begin life saving measures on himself immediately
  • Carries any inter squad communications devices. These will most likely be needed during a fight so having them easily accessible on the fighting load is important.
  • Important comm and signal notes and non-electronic signaling devices should also be able to be stored on the gear as well
  • Room for a small scanning optic. Being able to frequently and easily scan the terrain for threats is an important capability. While a magnified rifle optic is capable of this, we may not always want to be pointing a rifle at someone just for the sake of identifying them. It’s also tiring and because of this we will get lazy and not do it as much as we should. Storing the device on the fighting load ensures it is with us while scouting and not left attached on our pack should we leave it stashed.
  • The equipment should be comfortable, distributing the weight well and allowing excess heat to be ventilated.
  • It should be easy to shoot from and access extra magazines or other equipment while in the prone.
  • The equipment should be easy to put on and take off, especially in the dark.
  • The equipment should fit well so that it is not flapping around, making unnecessary noise and movement.
  • The equipment should not be bulky so that the user can easily navigate through obstacles with it on
  • The equipment shouldn’t add to the users profile by making it wider. This presents an easier target as well as snags on foliage.
Line 2 Gear 1) CAT tourniquet 2) 2x Blue Force Gear double mag pouches 3) Large Condor Radio Pouch 4) 1x Blue Force Gear double mag pouch 5) Surplus flash bang pouch w/ Vortex 8x monocular 6) Surplus flash bang pouch w/ smoke grenade 7) Blue Force Gear small Trauma Kit NOW! 8) Go-to AR Total weight of everything pictured is 20.6 pounds, this could be lighter if less magazines were carried…
…Added to my Line 1 gear my carried weight bumps up to 22.9 pounds…
…And when combined with my 3A gear, giving me 24 hours of equipment, everything weighs 40.3 pounds. In the event of a fight this equipment could be stashed and retrieved later, reducing the weight on the fighter.
Tourniquet is located in the center of my chest where it is easy to reach with both hands.
Smoke and monocular
Despite being from Condor this pouch has been a solid performer and is large enough for a radio, spare battery and other communications equipment
I really like the compact design and simplicity of the BFG small Trauma kit Now!
The chest rig is a split front Blue Force Gear Molleminus chest rig. It’s very lightweight due to the fact that it uses laser cut slots instead of sewn on webbing to create the MOLLE platform. The split front design is easy to get on and off and is nice for venting in the heat.
MolleMinus chest rig without pouches.
I lightly sand all my plastic buckles to reduce their shine
A small piece of rubber inner tube slid over the shoulder straps is a great way to manage cables for comms gear. Tape up extra buckles if they aren’t being used.

A less overt example

So the above is what I would wear if I were literally on a mission to fight hostile people who have openly declared war. But what if I want to be out in the bush without looking like a commando but still retain much of the capability I have with the above equipment in case I were to need it? I wrote recently about the Defensive Hunter concept I’ve been working on and that is my attempt to answer that question.

Ruger American Ranch in 6.5 Grendel and Hill People Gear Recon Kit Bag

While not as geared for fighting as the first example, it is really well suited to scouting. It has a look more in line with that of modern hunters, something ranchers and other land owners in the very rural area where I live are more familiar with than a guy in a chest rig with an AR. This is largely the reason why I chose a bolt gun, so as to not appear too “tactical”. If need be the larger 15 round magazine pictured above can be stowed and a 5 round put in, keeping the larger magazines tucked out of sight in the chest rig. This is also the reasoning behind not using any camouflage patterned equipment.

As you can see in the following pictures I’ve tried to follow the same attributes I listed at the beginning of the article in setting up my line 2 gear for this role. Now if you’re living in suburbia and within spitting distance of the Golden hordes this may or may not be a good route for you to go. You will have to figure out the best way for yourself, but I think a lot of the concepts still apply.

1) HPG Heavy Recon Kit Bag 2) Blue Force Gear Ten-Speed triple mag pouch 3) HPG binocular pouch 4) First Spear GP small pouch 5) North American Rescue elastic CAT Tourniquet pouch 6) Vortex 10×42 binoculars 7) 3x 15 round 6.5 Grendel mags 8) Radio 9) Combat Gauze and 4” Emergency Trauma dressing 10) CAT Tourniquet
Detail of magazines in pouches within the kit bag. This allows for a modest amount of ammunition to be carried without it being exposed to the elements or observation.
Binos and Radio
Headlamp stored inside kit bag on the left, remainder of medical items on the right
CAT Tourniquet placed on the bottom and in the center for easy access again

4 thoughts on “Junk on the Bunk: Line 2 Gear

  1. For that first setup with the AR, why is your IR aiming laser mounted behind your sling mounting point? Why do you have scrim mounted in front of it’s emitter? Why is your laser mounted precisely in the way of where you would place your hand should you need to do any sort of CQC, rapid follow up shots or offhand shooting(C-clamp grip)?

    I believe the particulars of that setup will be quickly corrected if you do end up taking a class, either a carbine class or a NVG specific class. If there is some explanation to it, please elaborate as I am confused.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Good questions and good attention to detail. I do things a bit different out in the sticks than I would do if I were still breaking down doors and pulling people out of their beds in the middle of the night.

      When employing IR lasers in a field environment I’m not going to be standing and using a C grip, but rather kneeling or prone utilizing cover and concealment and the shooting positions that correspond best. Placing the controls on the laser where my off hand can reach them while firing from those positions is important, especially since I don’t use pressure pads with cables that can pull out or fail. Cover is important because once you start firing and shining a laser you should expect rounds to come back towards you, unlike targets on a square range at class. This is also why I advocate moving firing position as much as possible when using a light or a laser.

      It’s probably not easy to tell from the pictures but the scrim doesn’t block the emitter, but if I ever have a problem it’s only held on by a couple elastic bands and is easy to remove.

      While I’m sure my way of doing things doesn’t always translate well to square range classes, the same can be said of square range class tactics that are brought out into the field and I’d rather adjust my tactics to fit my actual environment.

      With that being said, where do you teach?


    2. Mr. Dean,

      I suggest a more respectful approach to your questions to Mr. Badlands would be much appreciated.

      Like all of us I’m sure Mr. Badlands doesn’t know everything, however when I come here to observe and possibly learn from his unique perspective, I come at it with the due respect that he has a bunch of experience and gained knowledge for his decisions.

      Point being, I’m often looking for a DIFFERENT and possibly better way of going about a specific problem for the very type of reason Mr. Badlands put in his respectful reply to you.

      Interestingly, John at Alpha Charlie Concepts just put up a video on this very problem in this prepper-patriot-gun slinger culture. That of guys offering their advice in a disrespectful manner suggesting Mr. Badlands is on day one of boot camp, which he’s obviously not.

      Just because someone of EXPERIENCE doesn’t do things the way everyone else “is supposed to” doesn’t mean he’s a retard.

      Your post would have been fine after the first paragraph. But you had to do the all too typical unnecessary and disrespectful in the second. And I highly doubt Mr. Badlands is thin skinned either so please don’t go there.

      and BTW …. with all due respect. Thanks for asking the questions because again, the first paragraph was a valid inquiry.

      Liked by 2 people

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