Airsoft battle belt
How to choose your airsoft belt?
The type of tactical equipment discussed in this article, despite the changing fashion and technology, is still extremely popular. Some armies in the world still use belt kits as the basic type of equipment for their soldiers. However, in airsoft use, as well as on shooting ranges and in more modern armies, you can see a departure from this solution in favour of vests. The belts, however, remain and are doing well as a carrier of the so-called second line of equipment. They are therefore used to carry the most useful things that we want to have easy access to. They are intended to be elements of our equipment that we often use. For this reason, in my opinion, when choosing an equipment belt for airsoft games, it is worth paying attention to several factors.
First of all, its construction is important. There are three types of construction to choose from. Simple fabric belts, two-part solutions with an under belt and complex so-called combat belts. We will discuss them a bit further in detail. Another important issue is the possibility of attaching additional pouches, holsters and other equipment. Currently, solutions based on the MOLLE system dominate. We can also have a belt without any specific system, on which we simply weave pouches. Of course, other standards are also known, but I personally think that their place is only in the cabinets of reenactors. Discussing them is definitely material for a separate article. How the belt stays in place is also important. The aforementioned factors, i.e., the construction and the fastening system, have an impact on this.
Main features of battle belts
As I mentioned, when choosing a battle belt, we should be guided by its construction, carrying system and how well it keeps our equipment in place. Before we get to that, we still need to answer the question of what we will carry on it. I think a minimalist approach is useful here. A less loaded belt will behave better. It is easier to keep it in place both horizontally and vertically. Simply put, it will not twist or fall. Personally, I have two types of belts. One that supplements the chest rig and I carry mainly a holster and a few small pouches on it. I also top it off with a dump bag. It is important that I try not to load the pouches. Another solution is a more extensive combat belt, which for me is the main piece of equipment in a sniper set. There, due to the lack of a vest, I carry a bit more weight, but I keep it in place with suspenders. I usually supplement my equipment with a backpack. With this introduction, let's check what the most important features of equipment belts look like.
As I mentioned, it is the basis for me. I happen to use all the types of belts mentioned. Ordinary belts to keep pants in place can also carry, for example, a holster. Personally, I mainly use a belt from a well-known company that produces mountain equipment. It is light, but stiff enough, which is important if we want to equip it with pouches. At this stage, it is worth noting that in my opinion the type of buckle is of secondary importance. At least in airsoft. Most of the time, however, I use a two-piece belt. This solution has one Velcro strap that keeps our trousers in place. We attach the second, main belt with pouches to it. The most developed combat belts are wide, we put them on without the belt loops and often have places to mount braces, which additionally help in weight distribution.
2. Pouch mounting system
The simplest belts, without a fastening system, can be used to carry a holster, for example at a shooting range. Additional accessories need to be threaded on them already on the pants. Whenever we want to take off the belt, for example for washing, we also get rid of the pouches. It's inconvenient so I try to avoid it. The two-piece belt is a different story. Here I already have the MOLLE system and several pouches. First of all, I carry a holster, radio, dump bag and a small pouch for a spare battery or multitool. The combat belt with braces is also a place for a holster. I carry spare magazines and a large pouch for BBs and basic tools on it. Everything is again based on the MOLLE system. Thanks to the greater width of the airsoft belt, we often have a choice of how high we attach additional equipment. This is usually an option not available in more minimalist two-piece belts.
3. Keeping the belt in place
This may seem unimportant. Especially when we mainly have experience with straight trouser belts. The worst in this field are the more developed combat belts. Often, if our system is badly configured, we grab the pistol in the pouch and tear the entire equipment. Especially when we have a plastic holster. Or one overloaded pouch controls the entire battle belt as we move. This problem is minimized if we have a regular belt and pouches strung on it. Everything stays in place. The only problem may be the pouches moving sideways on the belt itself. Therefore, a two-piece belt seems to be the golden mean. Due to the fact that it is most often based on the MOLLE system, the pouches do not move sideways on it. Due to the Velcro strap, it stays in place. The only thing we need to remember is a fairly even distribution of weight. If one of the pouches is significantly loaded, it can still control the entire set, especially during the run.
A word of summary about the airsoft battle belt
The battle belt is an indispensable element of airsoft equipment. Regardless of whether we carry an extensive set of pouches and a holster on it or we just need something to keep the pants in place so that there is also a place to attach the dump bag. As often happens, especially in the case of tactical equipment in our hobby, they are subject to fashion. Now, mainly two-piece belts are gaining popularity, but basically all the solutions described in this article find their place. The basic issue that we must bear in mind is the fact that we choose the equipment according to our preferences and capabilities. It is worth remembering, especially when someone tries to convince us of their solution. So, what if we buy a minimalist, expensive two-piece belt with an expensive buckle, if we only need to carry a holster on it? Or vice versa. Is it worth bothering with an ordinary fabric belt if we want to carry several pouches and a drop bag? Ultimately, the choice is always ours and to be honest, what it will be is secondary if we support it with appropriate arguments. I think this article will help to formulate them.
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