Defensor Fortis LCS Belt Keeper & Flashlight Holster PALS modifications.

Time for some gear updates.  After switching from my old favorite ALICE LBE to MOLLE DF-LCS I experienced a couple of issues.  When using the LCS it would inch it’s way over my pants belt and push down creating discomfort.  I also noticed when in a sitting, crawling or in a prone position the rig would tend to climb toward my chest.  After thinking of a solution the only one I could think of was to attach straps that would keep the LCS from moving away from my waistline.

IMG_5445

Right segment of DF-LCS before adding belt keepers.

The idea came from my experience wearing a duty belt with belt keepers that were designed to hold the duty belt in line with my pants belt.  With this in mind I measured the area I wanted to place the keepers, doubled the length then added a inch and a half.  The extra length would give my fingers a place to work the snaps I intended to use.  Once I had the dimensions for the strap I cut six lengths of poly webbing, folded them in half and sewed them so the two halves would work as one.

IMG_5466

Right segment of LCS after belt keeper straps were added.

 

After sewing the keeper straps together they were sewn onto the three segments of the LCS.  Next the holes were punched then the snaps were added.  It was an easy project taking no more than 45-60 minutes to complete.  After testing the idea seems to work well to prevent the LCS from moving around and causing me trouble.  The LCS rig still has some movement/flexibility however it won’t move away from my waistline.  I made a short video, the link is below.

 

IMG_5459

I also modified what was labeled as a MOLLE flashlight holster to meet PALS specifications so I could attach it to my quick response belt.  The holster had the vertical snap strap but did not have the ladder webbing.  To fix this issue I removed the belt loop strap, opened the sewn seam to join the holster, added the new ladder section, then sewed the piece back together.  Time spent was about a half hour.  I made a how-I-did-it video the link its below.  -13

Worm bin notes: Update 20 Things remain the same

Bins 2 & 3, Update 20.  The heat is still on high in south Florida.  There has been small break during the night hours when the temperature reaches the mid to high 70’s.  It’s not much but I’ll take it.

 

As mentioned in my last notes I would gather several of the pupae I suspect are black solider flies and confine them so that if something does emerge from them hopefully it could be properly identified.  I put a few into a ventilated mason jar then placed it back into the bin.  I’ll leave in there for the next several weeks if nothing happens then I’ll put them in the outdoor compost bin.

The above set of photos are the exact same ones from update 19.  I forgot to refresh the weather page so the video has incorrect information for the ambient temperatures.  The estimated temperature was 87°F with 89% humidity.  It was very wet feeling this morning.  My shirt was drenched with sweat before I was finished.  Surprisingly the bin internal temperatures were exactly the same as last week.

IMG_0124

Bin 2 had no odors nor many spiders.  There were worms on the ledge.  I think it was getting warm in there.  Maybe they were trying to cool down.  It looks like all the waste had been consumed.  There was a roach(palmetto bug) in there that was dispatched to another place and time.  Sure hope there aren’t any eggs in there.  Bin 3 had a slight odor from the left over mango.  There were a few spiders in there it looks like the heat is effecting them as well.  They usually fill the bin quickly once they find a way in.

blender food

I’ve managed to burn out one blender feeding the worms.  I have a spare in storage but it is buried in our storage unit.  I’d have to remove most of the contents to get it.  That’s not going to happen anytime soon so I purchased a new one that already smells like it won’t last through the next cycle.  I may have to rethink my plan.

I usually put vegetables like carrots that take a long time to decompose in the blender to make it more accessible to the worms.  Items like avocados and fruits get cut up and placed in the bin mostly whole.  Those items typically don’t need assistance, root vegetables usually do.  When I do use scraps put into the blender I place the waste in a thick layer covering half or less of the surface.  This helps the waste maintain moisture preventing it from drying out before it gets consumed.

I’ll check in with the bins in a week, week and half and see how things are progressing.  -13

Project video below.

 

 

Worm bin notes: Mosquito Net Frame

Better late than never?  Over the last few years I’ve had to bring the worm bins into the house due to hurricanes expected to hit our area.  I roll them over a ramp from the porch into the living room where they stay until the danger has past.  Each time the house was infested by spiders within days.  I think they detect air movement and move to those areas then start spinning webs.

After a friend was bitten on the forehead by an unknown species of spider I’ve been reluctant to bring them indoors for fear of someone getting bitten.  There are many species of spider found commonly here in Florida that we frequently encounter.  The bite wound my friend experienced left a scar that cannot be denied.  It’s very concerning to not know what species it was.

spider bite

Unknown species spider bite wound. Florida, USA

With that knowledge I couldn’t put others living here at risk.  After thinking on the topic for a while I came up with the idea to make a PVC pipe frame then cover it with mosquito netting to contain the spiders within the confines of the enclosure.  The PVC pipe should work well for this purpose, it won’t rust, is lightweight and can be put together without fasteners or glue.  That makes the frame collapsible for easy storage and portable.

IMG_5334

I chose mosquito netting made for a bed.  It’s not heavy duty but should work well.  As best as I can tell the netting does not contain any insect repellent that may interfere with or kill the worms.  I’ve seen people buy mosquito netting for outdoor/camping use that killed their insects because the net contained repellent.  I chose this particular net because it completely encloses the space without any openings.  Plus the net was less than $12.00 on Amazon.  An affordable way to experiment.

To construct the frame I used 1/2″ pipe and fittings.  I used 90° elbow tees on the corners, regular tees for support members and legs as well as slip caps to cover and protect the leg ends from damage and insects or wildlife.  All fittings are dry fit so it can be taken apart easily since it won’t be used much.  The cost of the pipe and fittings was $20.94 purchased from Lowes.

frame

I started by measuring the areas I wanted to cover then cut the pipe to size.  Once I cut them I put the frame together.  Once together I cut the top cross-members to fit the frame.  I installed the cross-members without fittings since it would be much easier and give me the ability to move them as necessary.

net2

Net sag.  Lattice may be the solution.

Once I had the netting installed it became obvious that a piece or two of plastic lattice would work well to help support the net to keep it from bridging the moat.  The lattice would allow good air circulation.  I see scraps in trash piles regularly so the next time I spot some I’ll recycle it for the project.

net1

I purchased enough materials to extent the frame for one more bin setup.  If I add another bin I’ll make the extension then.  For now I’ll store the materials until needed.  Overall I’m satisfied with the outcome of the project.  The real test will be to bring the bins inside the house and see what happens with the spiders.  The population of spiders is minimal presently so an experiment at this time is premature.  Total cost for the project was $32.93.   From staging the materials to clean up the project took approximately 40 minutes to complete.  I’ll post an update if I test it or modify the project. -13

Short project video below.

Worm bin notes: Heat Wave Continues (Warning graphic image)

Bins 2 & 3, Update 19.  The heat won’t stop.  Although the temperature wasn’t as hot as other days it felt like it was much hotter that it was.  The ambient temperature was 89°F with 61% humidity.  Internal bin temperatures ran from 83.8°F to 83.1°F.  It seems like the fan blowing on the bins has had some effect.  There were no foul odors.  The only smell that seems normal is the light earthy smell.  Looks like most of last weeks waste was consumed.  Otherwise not much to note about the bin conditions.

I had forgotten to put a photo of the pupae that attach to the bin walls after I’ve introduced fruit flies.  If I leave what appears to be undamaged fruit such as mangos out after cutting the larvae seem to appear out of nowhere when there are no visible flies inside the house.  Sure hate to think we’re eating these off the tree with fly larvae already inside.

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I think it was last week after feeding waste I had noticed a new species that must have been introduced by me during a feeding.  I think I’ve had these bins running for a little over 3 years at this point and have never seen them before now.  I have seen them many times in the outdoor compost bins but never took the time to identify them.  Since I can’t figure out where they came from my curiosity is up.

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I thought they looked familiar but am not sure yet.  After looking for answers online I think they may be black solider flies. The website I looked at from Texas A&M directed me to another site that makes me almost sure they’re Hermetia illucens – black solider flies.  I’ll leave them in there and see how it turns out.  I’m thinking of isolating several of them inside the bin for added assurance.  If they hatch out in isolation that should get me the answer I want.

net

I recently ordered a cheap bed mosquito net from Amazon.  My plans are to make a frame from PVC pipe to enclose the bins.  Then cover the frame with the mosquito net.  The frame will allow me to keep the moat from being bridged by the netting.  This is the best idea I can come up with for now.  The worms are surviving in this heat but I’m not sure they are thriving in it.  If this plan works I’ll be able to move them into the air-conditioned house.

arachnid artistic blur bokeh

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

We usually bring them in for hurricanes.  By doing this the spiders detect air flow then move out into the house.  I’ve never photographed the webs that show up after a storm but find them everywhere shortly after.  However I’ve been reluctant to bring them in since my friend received a spider bite getting into her van in December of 2017.  The photo below is the bite wound as it was healing.  Unfortunately we were never able to figure out what species spider it was.  There are several commonly found here, it could have been any of them.

spider bite

Why I wear gloves when working in the bins.

She is fortunate to have not been bitten on an eyelid.  With this in mind I can’t risk infesting the house with unknown species that may impact residents of the house.  My plan for the mosquito net would prevent the spiders from getting into the house reducing the possibility of a bite wound.

The bins are a rich source of small insects for the spiders which somehow find their way into the screened in porch.  Since the heat wave I’ve been motivated to get my butt in gear and do something about it so they can be brought in safely.  I’d rather sacrifice the worms than see someone injured.  The next step will be to go to Lowes and pick up the pipe and fittings.  I’ll film a video of how I make them.  The new video is below. -13

Worm bin notes: Brutal Heat, They Live!

Bins 2 & 3, Update 18.  Not much to note for the bins.  The heat wave continues with late night temperatures in the 80’s along with high humidity.  The photo below was taken shortly before writing these notes at about 3:00am.  Doesn’t look like it cools down much at night.

Screen Shot 2019-07-16 at 2.57.34 AM

July 16, 2019 03:00 hours.

 

The bin temperatures were 86.7 F with an ambient temp of 92, 55% humidity.  Both bins appear to have most of the waste consumed.  There were no odors.  A few spiders are starting to show up as expected.  That also indicates the frogs and lizards haven’t found a way in.  Still cannot figure where the frogs came from.

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Grub in red circle.

There is a new addition to bin 2 I haven’t seen before.  There were a couple of those grub looking things crawling around in there that I’ve seen in the compost bin.  Not sure what they are but hope they aren’t roaches.

AJ's Green Topics

AJ’s Green Topics YouTube Channel

If I don’t make a note about it, it’s not going to happen.  I had every intention to mention AJ’s Green Topics in update 16 & 17 but forgot.  He suggested I check the soil temperature.  Which is why the ambient and soil temperatures are now included in the updates.  As cool as the soil feels to the touch, the 86.7 F temperature cannot be ignored. Seems obvious now huh?  Go over to AJ’s YouTube channel and subscribe he has worm bins and other projects you may find of interest.   Thank you, AJ!

Since the heat is not letting up and it is still hurricane season I plan on ordering some type of mosquito netting to keep the spiders in check and out of the house in a day or so.  I’ll have to search for something that doesn’t have bug repellant in the material.  The video is below. -13

Worm bin notes: Heat Wave! They’re going to cook if something doesn’t change!

Bins 2 & 3, Update 17.  The weather over the last week or so has been hot. High 80’s into the 90’s during the day, in the low 80’s at night.  Last update(16) the bin temperature inside the bins read in the 80 degree range.  I thought there was something wrong with the compost thermometer I was using.  That prompted me to use a digital one from the kitchen.

What a surprise to discover how accurate it was.  The worm bin soil temperature readings were 86 degrees F for both bins.  That might explain why the waste hasn’t been consumed at the rate it usually is.  And also maybe why I’ve seen worms trying to escape the bin several times.

My issue is where to put the worms for a cooler temperature.  I have no other place to put them when it gets hot like this.  Not sure what to do.  I do have a fan blowing on the bins but don’t have much confidence it will help.  Since they aren’t’ consuming at the rate they usually do a lot of items are getting a little foul.

I also noticed the other insects in there didn’t seem to be as active as usual.  I’ve brought these into the living room during hurricanes.  The problem with that are the fruit flies and spiders that invade the house when I do.  Plus there is no space for them. Currently the living room is full of items from storage that we’re sorting through.  I’ll check the temperature in a few days then next week to see how the bins have advanced since this update.  -13

 

 

Worm bin notes: Time Lapse

Part of the Vermicompost Experiment includes managing all the videos and still images that accumulate for the project.  I don’t have enough digital storage to keep most of the files so they get deleted forever.  I had planned on making a video of each bin over a 6 to 12 month period.  That didn’t work out because I’ve been so far behind schedule on other projects.

I was able to photograph a 5 month period of continuous before and after images for bins 2 and 3.  Bin 1 was a little different but I did get enough to make a short video.  The images show what the bins look like with food waste then what it looks like after the worms have their way with it.  When I post the usual updates it’s not always easy to notice how much can change over a short period of time.

The time lapse videos make it much easier to see how capable the worms are turning waste into soil magic.  These have to be my favorite project videos so far.  The bin 1 video has a me explaining the experience.  The other videos for bins 2 and 3 have no speaking, only music.  Back to the video editing. -13

 

Bin 1 video.

Bin 2 video.

Bin 3 video.

Worm bin notes: Update 16 Bins 2 & 3

Bins 2 & 3, Update 16.  It’s been almost a month.  Hard to believe that much time has passed.  Still catching up on other projects.  Not much to report this update.  It was a hot, sweaty day, 90 degrees Fahrenheit.  I did use a compost thermometer to measure the inside temperature, it showed 80 degrees F.  That couldn’t have been correct because the substrate felt cool to the touch.  I’ll use a digital thermometer next time.

The plan this time was to pull all the castings from the bottom to the top.  That way the castings would get aerated and give me a chance to see how many worms are in the bin.  I looks like both bins have plenty of worms, maybe more than the space can handle.  I may have to start a new bin as I had been thinking.  Both bins had that freshly dug earthy smell.  No foul odors of any kind

Since I’ve loaded the bin up with a large amount of food I’ll come back in a week for a checkup. -13

 

 

Dash Cam: More that I thought possible.

103-106 are posted on the South Florida Driving 101 YouTube channel.  Getting this back on track again after the last 8 months off.  I had other projects to finish first that consumed all of my time.  I’ll have a couple of videos and blogs about what I was doing during that time sometime soon.  Over the last two days I’ve watched over 2500 three minute videos for content.  I’ve changed some of the standards for which I’ll post a video section.

In the beginning I’d post most offenses but there are so many of the same thing it would be long and boring.  I’m now trying to keep it to the most offensive drivers, cool sites, oddities.  An example, if I put all the drivers not using turn signals in a video it wouldn’t be worth watching.  However after this session of editing I’m starting to see a pattern among police not using them either.  If the police don’t set the example how the hell can we expect others to use them?  Maybe a supervisor will see a few of these videos and get on their asses to set a better example.

I never thought there would be so many videos when I started this project.  I wish I had more time for it I’ll often have to delete videos I’ve never seen to keep up.  Now that I have a major portion of the other projects I’ll be able to keep up. -13

103 has a jet take off and landing, cut-offs, zombie crossings, more police bad examples.

Video short- Driver almost strikes bicyclist’s

104, cut-offs, jet landing, bicyclist’s cut-off, motorcycle fly-by, last second merge, motorcycle and car close call.

 

105, Has a cool bird fly-by, van with no doors, accident scene, cloud formations, cool jet overhead, some drive-by art, dangerous ladder and South Florida drivers.

 

106, Lincoln cloud formation, peacocks in the city, lots of police not using turn signals, drawbridge, jet fly over, short art break, iguana crossing.

 

 

Worm bin notes: Long overdue follow up

Bins 2 & 3, time for a few updates.  It has been some time since the last update.  Late last year was the last one.  When I recorded update 15 and went to edit I discovered two update videos that had never been edited.  Overall there hasn’t been much out of the ordinary going on with the worms, nothing worth recording.

During the filming of updates 12 – 14 there had been a lot of worm activity at the top of the bins.  Some times there were few, other times many.  I never noticed any foul odors or anything that would seem offensive to my perception.  The soil drains into the lower bin that is emptied regularly so that doesn’t seem like the soil is too wet.  It seems like there is enough food for them.  After watching some of the footage I’m thinking there are too many in each bin.  Also it seems like some food is too fresh, it needs to be more decomposed or something like it.  When it is a more decomposed state they swarm it until it disappears.

Update 13 video

Update 14 video

For update 15 there is a little of how my bins are set up and some video of the current conditions in each bin.  I decided to add some potatoes, vanilla bean and sand to see what happens.  If they don’t flee I’m considering starting another bin and rotating the soil in the bins possibly adding more moss or shredded cardboard.

Before I can do that I’ll need another floor dolly and a better way to cut cardboard the way I want too. Thinking of looking for a cheap bandsaw for the cardboard, the carpet knife is getting a little dangerous. It’s also hurricane season here these bins have to be kept clean and ready to roll inside the house. Not sure I’m ready to start another bin, having enough food will be an issue. Or maybe I can find another local who wants to start a bin and give them a portion of the worms.

This “experiment” has been fun and educational I always look forward to opening the bins and seeing what has changed. The next update should be interesting I’m mostly sure I’ll make major changes to bin 3 to see what is happening below the surface. -13

Austere Medicine: Mega Medic Bag – Kit Contents

I finally got around to finishing this bag and making a video!  On June 3rd of 2016 I posted a product review video of the Mega Medic bag.  At the time it was sitting empty, we had decided our medical supplies and equipment needed to be changed and updated based on how the use of the kits evolved over the previous 5-8 years.  Most of the kits had been used out of a rescue truck for a project we were working on.

When I made the review video I gathered various medical items that fit into the different parts of the bag to demonstrate the possibilities of what could be kept there.  The items shown weren’t a set up ready-to-go kit.  I already had a list for the kit contents but didn’t have everything I wanted.  Some of the items on hand had reached it’s useful life.

Recently after reading a video comment on the kit I had never seen before I checked to see what was needed to finish this kit.  Triangle bandages.  That was all.  Trying to keep track of medical inventory without a computer may put me in a straight jacket.  After replacing and restocking items the kit was finally ready.  How is that for a swift kick in the pants?

BRAVO

B Compartment

The kit is an extension of the aid bag.  This is considered our Trauma Kit and builds on splinting, bandaging, eye, dental, large wounds, burns.  Can be resupply or used as is.  It is based on several kits from past experience.  It may be hard to imagine but nearly every item in this kit could be expended on one incident.

Some of the kits from the past using the same bag had more of the bandaging and splinting materials.  Those kits had been based on, in part, by proximity to a military base and a direct flight path where helicopters and transport aircraft that could hold hundreds of soldiers could and sometimes did go down.

Then there is the, being the only one there and no one is coming. To the rural 20,000 person county, only 5 people qualified to operate two ambulances with the nearest mutual aid unit 30 minutes away, no air support.  Standing there after a mass casualty incident looking around and seeing empty aid bags and bandaging supply wrappers among the carnage leaves a lasting impression.

ALPHA

Alpha compartment, why we use those pouches

During the same time we were updating our kits we were able to find several different type packing organizers on sale at Marshalls store.  After using a few of them we went back to that store and many others within our local area and bought whatever stock they had in the store.

Those finds allowed us to keep items protected in ziploc bags and create mini kits without having a kit full of ziploc bag mess.  Multiples of one type item or a kit made of several different components they’ll work well for many common items.

LG ZIP POUCH

Double side bandaging pouch (Go Travel Packing Pouch no.3)

The bag above was one of the last pouches found.  As it’s packed it works very well, 8 rolls Kerlix, 12 5×9 Surgipads, 20 4×4 sponges.  I’ve looked for more and can’t find them.  The pouch below is what was used before we found the pouch above.  The dressings were packed the same way they are shown, the Kerlix was packed like the double side pouch, 8 rolls in a ziploc bag.

The smaller pouches have items like tape, self adhesive, triangle and elastic bandages.  The bandage pouches are very handy for bandaging purposes or resupply.  Glad we found them when we did.

SM ZIP POUCH

Single side bandaging pouch (Travelon Packing Organizers Set-Small)

CD CASE

CD Case

I’ve been looking at ways to store the instant compresses for years.  When the portable CD cases became available I found out they worked well.  If the internal storage sleeves are removed there is room for two instant compresses.  All I had to do to get this type case to work was remove the sleeves from the rivets that were simple to pull out by hand.

At first I used a metal case but it added weight and was too stiff to fit in multiple spaces.  When these softer type plastic cases became available I tried one.  Discovered that I liked it better.  It has more flexibility and can fit into tighter spaces than the metal case.  For the type of compress and CD case chosen its simple to get them into the case.  First, I arrange the liquid part of the compress in one half of the bag and the dry ingredients in the other then, fold in half.

CASE FOLD

Case open showing how compress is packed

Place both compresses in the case then close it.  As shown below it works good.  The compress is protected from punctures and abrasion and it’s easy to see the contents.  I usually look for things like this at the outlet stores but ordered these off eBay for consistency.

CASE CLOSED

Case packed with 2 compresses

This kit has one 18″ and two 36″ SAM splints that can be used in many different ways and can be custom cut with the trauma shears.  Very handy to have on hand.  They beat the old ice cream scoop, vinyl covered wood, blow-up doll, waxed cardboard splints any day.

SPLINT

FareTec CT-6

REEL COMPACT

REEL Splint

The two photos above show the traction splints kept in or with the trauma kit.  The FareTec and the REEL splints are surplus finds.  If you’re looking to stock your kit check out eBay and the surplus stores.  Make sure all the parts are there before you buy, get new if at all possible.  Couldn’t give a price on either of these.  eBay as I shockingly found out only keeps auction records for 3 years not a running tally like amazon.

EYE DENTURE

Dental / Eye Kit

In the photo above are the contents of the dental and eye kit.  The denture case can be used for dentures, loose teeth or prosthetic eyes.  There is a sclearal cup for removing contacts and prosthetic eyes.  A case for contacts and a 10x magnified mirror.

Two eye shields and two food service 16 ounce cups for covering injured eyes.  Those things can work well for keeping eyes protected.  Some of the eye injuries I’ve seen makes me want these in stock at all times.  Not shown are the sterile eye cups, the Sal-jet rinse 30ml saline vials or the Refresh Plus eye drops.

Most items in the kit have multiple uses.  Dressing like the trauma and surgipad make good splint padding.  The surgical CSR wraps in the kit to make clean working space can be used to protect wounds.  A mylar blanket as an occlusive dressing.  The list is endless.

SEAL

Security Sealed Kit

Security seals are an important part of our medical system.  The seals are tightly controlled and numbered.  A strict system is in place, only a couple of people here are allowed to seal a kit.  That way when one of the kits need to be used and the seal is intact we can be assured the contents will be there.

The seals used in the video are not the same seals used on our bags.  They’re from old stock and are used for training.  They work the same as fire extinguisher seals, twist or pull on the seal and it will break easily.  If you get some, get numbered if possible it will help in case someone else has the same type/color seals.

A word of caution, be careful where they are placed on zippers they can break zipper parts easy.

CASE OPEN

Hardigg AL3018-0905

The Trauma Kit is kept in a cabinet or could be stored and transported in a heavy duty case with the REEL splint, a MOLLE 2 pack frame, various color pack covers, a quick litter in a dump pouch and a small tarp to place the contents onto.  The case is stored with the gasket out, if left in place it compresses under the weight of the other cases and is not as effective over time.

Seems like that covers the items I felt I left out of the video.  I don’t want to repeat the video here.  I would rather people watch the video, then read the blog after to see what was left out.  Clearly I don’t write scripts for these videos, just an item name, maybe a note.  If there are any changes or updates in the future they’ll be posted.  The new video is below.  -13

Other video project featuring the Mega Medic bag are below.

Product review video.

Video of MOLLE 2 pack modifications.

ALICE Magazine Pouch Turned MOLLE

From the Laboratory of Insane Schemes.  ALICE military surplus has been my load bearing choice since the mid 1970’s.  Not perfect for sure but it was a great place to carry my canteens and other items that would fit into ALICE 30 round magazine pouches.  Cut off the grenade pouch and they fit together nicely on an issue pistol belt.

Moving into the 2000’s.  After checking out some of the PALS / MOLLE surplus available I decided to change over.  Although the webbing can be hot and heavy the PALS way of attaching pouches or attachment of any kind to LBE or packs is a good one that almost makes the attached item a part of what it’s attached to.

Moving forward left unused canteen and ALICE magazine pouches packed in boxes and me wishing I had a better way than the adapters made to use ALICE on MOLLE.  The adapter still leaves the pouch flopping around like its on a pistol belt.  Not a very good solution.

I had the idea recently after a resupply to take apart an ALICE magazine pouch and see if I could convert it over to a MOLLE pouch.  If it would work it would fit perfectly on the space fillers on the DF-LCS rig elastic section I’d made from a zippered FLC purchased to salvage for parts.

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Inside view of FLC adapter/filler and “new” MOLLE magazine pouch attached.

First I had to figure out where the attachment straps would be placed near the top of the pouch and where to snap it on.  At the top I chose the hinge point for the lid so it wouldn’t interfere with access.  Snaps on the bottom.  When the snaps are on the back of the pouch they tend to push it out due to the bulk of the snap.  If snap popping becomes an issue they can always be changed to lift-the-DOT.  We’ll see what happens in the future.

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Finished pouch.

img_4899

Location of snaps

The web straps were the same length.   Doubled, folded in half and sewn together.  Measuring the magazine pouches for the PALS webbing I discovered that the pouch width could vary as much as a 1/4″ between 4 pouches.  I chose the widest width and cut all the pieces that size.  There are no actual dimensions in here because the variation in pouch width, measuring devices and points of measurement may not be the same as mine.  Duplicating it exactly may cause problems.

After lots of seam ripping and thread picking the pouch was in half and the ALICE webbing was removed.  Laying out the PALS is as simple as can be 1″ x 1 1/2″.  Since the pouch is so small I sewed a center line and the edges like I’ve seen on some issue pouches.  Sew the straps to the hinge point.  Keep it simple.

Although the snaps used and the Pres-n-Snap are designed to cut through the fabric without punching a hole, I did punch because the amount of pouches were small and I wanted more precise location of my snaps.  I’ve had puckering and slight movement of the snap post under pressure from the hand press that the finished snap was visibly off mark times I haven’t punched a hole first.  It’s also much easier on the body with a hand press if the hole has been punched.

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With the holes punched and the webbing sewn on, the stud part of the snap was installed on the bottom of the pouches.  I try to leave them until the end of the project or leave them off for as long as possible.  In the past I’ve put them on early thinking I’m saving time but they were in the way of the sewing machine on many occasions or were scratched up.

Once the snap half was in place the pouches could be sewn back together again.  The top and bottom received four stitch lines and the whole side of the pouch received two stitch lines.  That complete, the other half of the snaps were installed on the web straps and that was it.  Those are the steps I took to convert ALICE to MOLLE.  Now I have some of my favorite pouches to use again.  There’s a video below of the process.  -13

Materials used: Mil Spec DOT snaps, poly webbing, sunbrella thread.