When it comes to airsoft, one of the most important pieces of equipment that you can have is a good plate carrier vest.
This piece of gear is designed to help protect your vital organs from being hit by BBs, and it can also help carry extra magazines and other gear that you might need on the field.
In this article, we’ll take a look at some of the available types of airsoft plate carrier vests, as well as some tips on choosing the right one for you.
Before we start, we wanted to mention one of the most popular types of airsoft plate carrier vests – the MOLLE system. This system allows you to add or remove pouches and other accessories as needed, and it’s also very versatile
Types of plate carrier vests
There are a number of different types of plate carrier vests on the market, and while the MOLLE system is arguably one of the best out there, it might not be the top choice for everyone.
Because of this, we will discuss a few different types to help you decide on your new plate carrier vest.
Molle Plate Carrier Vests
The MOLLE plate carrier system, such as the Kombat UK Spartan, is a durable vest covered in something called MOLLE webbing. This webbing allows for the easy attachment of pouches, holsters, and sheaths, which are useful in storing sidearms, replica knives, and things like ammo magazines and tools.
As you’ll be carrying lots of gear with you during your airsoft games, a MOLLE plate carrier vest is a great option for both protection and easy access to your equipment without needing to bring a backpack with you into the field.
Emerson Gear Heavy Duty AVS Vest
The AVS vest is a great adaptive plate carrier by Emerson Gear capable of having interchangeable assault panels to suit your loadout
Similar to the MOLLE, a tactical vest will serve you by allowing you to carry more equipment out into battle but will also provide you with slightly less protection than a plate carrier.
It’s worth noting that some tactical vests like the Emerson Gear Heavy Duty AVS Vest can hold plates for protection, however, but there are many different variants ranging from lightweight vests for simply attaching pouches to those that act as body armour.
The chest rig is designed for players who aren’t worried about protection and would rather have a bit more mobility during their airsoft games. These rigs are worn over the torso and provide a number of pockets and attachments to the wearer for storing things like extra ammo and other useful tools and equipment.
There are many styles of chest rig with different camo patterns available, and these are much more suitable for those who simply intend to keep out of sight. This is why those sneaky ghillie-suited players often wear a chest rig.
Kombat UK Trojan Chest Rig
A great starter chest rig by Kombat UK with 4 integrated magazine pouches and various utility pouches attached to outside
You’re going to want this sort of thing at hand when you’re out playing airsoft, as running out of ammunition or needing some of these helpful tools like scissors, tape, or a first aid kit and not having them at hand can cut your game short.
How to choose a plate carrier vest
Of course, every player will want or need something different when it comes to their airsoft gear. Choosing the right equipment for you is important and should match your playstyle.
It’s important to weigh up the advantages and disadvantages of things like plate carrier vests and chest rigs and then choose a style that is right for you. As well as this, you’ll want to pick a design that suits your most regular airsoft environments too. Green camo in a desert environment isn’t going to offer you much camouflage, for example.
Kombat UK Viking Plate Carrier
A fully adjustable, full-body Viking plate carrier by Kombat UK with loads of space for tactical molle pouches. It is built with a full-size cummerbund
Advantages of plate carrier vests
The most obvious advantage of wearing a plate carrier vest is that it provides added protection against BB shots. Alongside this, there are a number of other advantages which should convince you to invest in one of these.
- Authentic appearance with camo possibilities
- Allows for the carrying of utility items
- Can attach things like holsters for quick access to airsoft sidearms
Many more players will wear a plate carrier compared to those who won’t, as the benefits simply outweigh the disadvantages. However, it’s worth knowing the reasons that some might choose not to use a plate carrier vest when playing.
Disadvantages of plate carrier vests
One of the primary reasons that players won’t use a plate carrier is often down to movement and comfort. For example:
- Plate carriers can be heavy, impacting the wearer’s stamina
- They can be inflexible, reducing manoeuvrability
- During hot weather, they can be too warm for players
There are a lot of things to consider when deciding on whether to get a plate carrier vest or not, including the environment and climate you’ll be playing in, as well as your overall playstyle. If you’re a sneaky, agile, and fast player, you might want to reduce your carry weight by using a simple micro chest rig instead.
How To Wear A Plate Chest Carrier
It’s fairly straightforward to wear a plate chest carrier, but often players make mistakes and wear them incorrectly. First of all, try to avoid overstuffing your pockets as this will add excess weight and reduce manoeuvrability.
Next, ensure that you are wearing it the right way round, that the straps are all secured in the right place, and that it fits well. Your plate carrier shouldn’t bounce around and move position, but it also shouldn’t restrict your movement too much.
Kombat UK Spartan Plate Carrier
The spartan plate carrier by Kombat UK is a great low profile molle plate carrier for both new players and regular players capable of attaching all your pouches needed out in the field
Caring For Your Plate Chest Carrier
As with all of your airsoft gear, you want to ensure that it’s in top condition, which means that you must conduct maintenance after each game.
- First, clean your chest carrier by removing plates and scrubbing with soap and water
- Repair any holes using a sewing kit to maintain the integrity of the carrier for longer
- Avoid using harsh chemicals and treat your carrier with care
As well as keeping it clean and repairing it after play, you should also ensure that you keep it safe when you’re not using it. Keep it hung up and off the floor to avoid any damage.
Plate carriers and chest rigs are common pieces of equipment for airsoft, and it’s important to consider using one when playing so that you can keep your gear safe and at hand. Just ensure that you do your research to find the best vest or plate carrier for you.