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Outdoor enthusiasts are always on the lookout for the latest and greatest gear to help them get the most out of their adventures. Chest rigs are no exception. This piece of equipment allows you to carry your tactical gear, ammunition, and other supplies without worrying about feeling weighed down or looking bulky. I’m an outdoor person and have owned a few chest rigs in my lifetime. In my experience, the Condor Recon Chest rig is extremely sturdy and ideal for carrying almost everything you need. Read this article to see how I choose the best tactical chest rig for any outdoor adventure.
Also Read: Top 8 Best Survival Backpacks to Buy in 2022
Here Are The Best Tactical Chest Rigs (Our Picks)
I’ve assembled this list of my top picks based on my experience and reviews from other websites like Amazon and eBay. I hope it helps you find the perfect rig for all your adventures!
Condor Recon Chest Rig
The Condor Recon Chest Rig is the perfect lightweight load-bearing rig for your tactical needs. This fully modular chest rig is ideal for storage and comfort while on the go. With a large fold-out map pocket, you have easy access to your maps and other documents as needed and enough space to comfortably store them when out of use.
The padded shoulder straps keep you comfortable in any situation and are fully adjustable so you can get the perfect fit for your body. The H-harness, which is also fully adjustable, can be separated from the chest rig if more mobility is needed.
The chest rig features three internal mesh pockets on the back panel that provide easy storage with breathability. For additional storage, it has two pistol mag pouches and four open-top M4 mag pouches.
With a quick-release tab on both shoulders, this chest rig can be removed in a hurry when necessary, making it ideal for multiple scenarios in which speed is key.
This chest rig is the ultimate solution for low-visibility operations. The black DWR coating makes this chest rig almost disappear when worn under a uniform or jacket. The MOLLE webbing gives you ultimate customizability. It can be used with any MOLLE pouches to enhance your kit with organized storage and quick access items. Contoured shoulder straps mean the weight will not be a factor while moving quickly.
- Designed to offer a high degree of comfort
- Features a padded cross-back shoulder strap
- Come with quick-release buckles on the side straps
- Can hold up to 6 magazines in its 3 open top mag pouches
- Internal pockets include two mesh pockets
- It may seem large for a few people
The Condor Recon Chest Rig is a lightweight vest that provides plenty of storage space for carrying magazines. It has six removable mag pouches and two internal mesh pockets. The padded cross-back shoulder straps are comfortable for extended wear, and it’s fully adjustable so that you can tailor them as per your size.
Helikon-Tex Range Line, Training Mini Rig
The Helikon-Tex Range Line Training Mini Rig is a low-profile, minimalist chest rig that allows you to train with your gear without wearing a full vest. The belt and shoulder straps are fully adjustable, giving you the ability to configure them based on your body and training needs.
The rig has two main flaps, which can be used to hold various pouches or equipment depending on your training regimen. The rig also comes with three inner pockets to further customize the layout. It can be used for training only or as a secondary means of carrying gear if you’re already wearing a plate carrier or full vest.
The Helikon-Tex training mini rig was designed from the ground up to meet the needs of trainees and law enforcement personnel alike. This lightweight, low-visibility rig is designed to match your kit and can be worn on either side of your body for maximum flexibility. It has two main compartments and a zippered front pocket, so you can carry everything you need to train or just get through the day without being weighed down.
- Highly functional design
- Slimline profile
- Can be easily adjusted to fit your body type
- Very comfortable to wear with no chafing or pressure points on your hips
- Available in multiple colors
- May need some adjustment before it is ready to use with your gun holster and other accessories (but this is not uncommon with most tactical belts)
The Helikon-Tex training rig is a versatile training vest that can be worn in different ways to suit your needs. It can be worn like a belt bag or a chest rig, depending on what you need to carry and the best way to access it. The zippered pouch has a full-length divider and two smaller pockets, allowing you to customize it for your needs.
The vest is coated with nylon, so it’s durable and comfortable to wear. It also features front MOLLE straps for additional attachments and back straps for belt-loop attachment.
Condor Tactical Duty Equipment
This Condor Tactical duty equipment is constructed from 1000D nylon. This Condor Tactical Duty Equipment is designed for the modern-day tactical operator. The equipment line provides a wide range of performance-driven, duty-tested products that serve the needs of the law enforcement, military, and public safety communities.
- Easy clean
- Can be removed and replaced easily for cleaning
- Uses the same clips that are used for the standard Condor Tactical Belt
- Robust construction
- The color fades off after a while, and then it looks like a regular belt
The Condor Tactical Duty Belt is built for heavy-duty use while being fashionable. This one-size-fits-all belt features a durable and rugged build, so you don’t have to worry about it breaking. Condor Tactical is committed to providing law enforcement, military, and security personnel with the highest quality multifunctional equipment. They are proud to offer a variety of tactical gear that is ideal for all outdoor people.
NcStar AK VISM Chest Rig
The NcStar AK VISM chest rig can be worn on the front of your body with the included shoulder straps. It is made of 600 Denier PVC-coated nylon and will not fade or fall apart over time. It is lightweight and comes with a sturdy carry handle. The chest rig is designed to hold up to six AK magazines and has three pouches. Each pouch can store one mag, but you have the option to store multiple mags in each pouch if you need more space.
It features a universal design so that it can fit most AK magazines. It has adjustable elastic straps with quick-release buckles to secure your magazines. This product is great for keeping your ammunition organized and accessible at all times.
This chest rig is designed with adjustable straps and a padded mesh back. It can be used to hold other accessories as well, including safety glasses and other gear. This product has a heavy-duty PVC construction and an adjustable side release buckle that can be used to adjust the size of the vest. The pouches have bungee cords for added storage, and this product also features a MOLLE webbing system on the front of the vest.
- It’s easy to attach and detach
- It’s made out of durable nylon fabric
- It’s fully adjustable for different body types
- It only has six magazine pouches, so if you need more than six magazines, you will have to buy another chest rig or get a larger one
- The straps don’t have any padding on them, which means they can dig into your shoulders if you wear them for an extended period or under heavyweight
The NcSTAR AK VISM chest rig is a six-magazine nylon chest rig with Kevlar threading. It features four pistol magazine pouches in the front and two rifle magazine pouches on each side. The adjustable bungee cord retains your magazines. This chest rig is lightweight and has MOLLE webbing for modular attachments.
As one of the leaders in tactical gear and firearm accessories, NcStar is proud to present the all-new AK VISM chest rig. This revolutionary new chest rig is constructed of heavy-duty nylon and features genuine MOLLE webbing for attaching modular pouches with ease. Equipped with multiple pouches, there is more than enough room for magazines, weapon accessories, or anything else you may need on the field. Adjustable shoulder straps, detachable shoulder pads, two extra-wide rows of webbing, and extra room on top will make this the best buy out there!
Rapdom Tactical Molle Chest Rigs
Rapdom tactical molle chest rigs are designed for military, police, and firefighters. The rapdom tactical molle vest comes with quick-release buckles and adjustable straps. The chest rig is designed to be functional and affordable without sacrificing quality. The 2×4 M4 magazine pouches can hold 4×30 round magazines each or a single 100 round Beta C-Mags. The two utility pouches provide great organization for tools or other accessories you want to carry with you. Adjustable shoulder straps make it easy to carry around your chest but can also be loaded on the top of your backpack and carried as a kit bag.
This chest rig is designed for maximum comfort and utility. You can turn any simple outfit into a tactical powerhouse with this chest rig. It’s lightweight yet durable. It’s strong and flexible. With its adjustable straps and breathable mesh back, it’s comfortable to wear even in the hottest climates.
The chest rig has plenty of room for all your gear, so no more fumbling around when you need something fast. It has six separate zip-up pockets and two open-top pockets to hold your magazines and other equipment. It also features an adjustable hook and loop closure on the front panel so you can customize the fit for any level of comfort. So whether you’re looking for an easy way to carry your gear or just need an additional layer of security when things get rough out there, look no further than the Rapdom Tactical Molle chest rig!
- It’s light
- it’s adjustable
- It works with or without plates.
- Won’t irritate your skin
- Extremely versatile
- Can be mounted horizontally or vertically
- Pouches are not all the same size
- It doesn’t look tactical (it has no mag pouches)
- You have to wear it with some kind of plate carrier.
Rapdom Tactical chest rigs are designed with all your tactical gear in mind. With 6 rows of PALS webbing on the front and back for attaching your gear, there is plenty of space for extra mags, gadgets, and other devices. The inner wall of the shell can be used to hold a water bladder or medkits. The new model is smaller and lighter than the previous ones.
ANA Tactical Vest Chest Rig
The ANA Tactical Vest Chest Rig is a multi-pocket chest rig designed for the ultimate in comfort and durability. It is made of high-quality nylon, which is lightweight and breathable, so you don’t have to worry about getting sweaty. And with its adjustable straps, you can be sure of a snug, secure fit.
The vest has an array of pockets and compartments, so you’ll always have a place to put your gear. It has two large front pouches, each with an internal pocket and an external pocket with hook-and-loop closure; two zippered side pouches; two interior mesh pockets that are great for smaller items; and three rear universal pistol magazine pouches.
The chest rig was designed to be the workhorse of your loadout, increasing your capabilities and performance in all fields of operations. This vest is designed to not only have the ability to carry all necessary tactical gear but also fit comfortably in most tactical body armor carriers issued by militaries worldwide. With highly modular pouches and MOLLE mounting webbing, the ANA can be easily configured for any mission, making it your “Go-to” choice for all missions.
- Easy to adjust
The ANA Tactical Vest chest rig is a lightweight rig for carrying essentials. It features a lightweight, durable design and full coverage in the front and back, so you can safely carry everything you need.
This chest rig represents the latest in chest rig design and innovation. It was designed to allow maximum flexibility, with 7 constructed MOLLE columns on the front of the rig and 5 on each side. There are 2′ x 3′ Velcro panels placed on the front torso area, chest area, and shoulder areas to allow you to place your various patch outlines, name tape, or other morale patches or reflective tabs.
SSO Original Russian Army Special Forces Assault Vest
This Special forces assault vest from the SSO company is ideal for anyone who needs an effective, no-nonsense protective vest. Comfortable and adaptable to various weather conditions, it’s indispensable for outdoorsmen and active athletes. The vest is suitable for carrying loads of up to 10 kg. In case of necessity, this can be increased by tightening the belt up to 15 kg. Another useful feature is that it fits virtually all types of male body shapes and weight ranges. You don’t have to be a soldier to wear it.
The pattern for the assault vest was developed for airborne and reconnaissance units and other special services taking part in special operations in different conditions and situations (including the Arctic). This is a great choice for anyone looking to get into tactical gear. It’s made from rugged, rip-proof, and water-resistant Nylon/Cordura fabric, which will keep your equipment safe from the elements and wear and tear. The vest is equipped with Molle webbing to attach side pouches, holsters, ammo pouches, and other accessories within easy reach. It’s also fully adjustable on the shoulders and sides to ensure a perfect fit.
This vest meets the highest standard of quality and durability, so you can be sure it will last through all your adventures—no matter how intense they are. The SSO Original Russian Army Special Forces Assault Vest will not disappoint!
- Perfect fit
- Good quality
- Easily adjustable
- Easy to get in and out
- It has a lot of room for gear, especially the pockets on the chest
- Not much padding on the shoulder straps
The Russian Special Forces Assault Vest is specially designed to give freedom of movement and protection from fragments and shell splinters. The vest has several pouches for bulletproof plating inserts. It features 2 sets of overlapping elements to provide additional protection: one set made from high-impact plastic plates and the second set from aramid fiber.
If you’re looking for a high-quality assault vest, the SSO Original Russian Army Special Forces Assault Vest is a great option. This vest offers the best in quality and design. It has a modular pocket system, a front utility pouch, an adjustable waist belt, and an adjustable shoulder strap with a quick-release buckle. It’s perfect for use on patrol or during combat training.
Blackhawk Commando Chest Harness
The Blackhawk Commando Chest Harness is ideal for tactical operations. It combines lightweight nylon webbing and four-point, quick-release buckles to provide a stable platform for carrying tactical accessories or other chest rigs. The four magazine pouches are elasticized for extra capacity, and the two main pouches can be adjusted for any size of ammunition. A heavy-duty drag handle is attached to the back of the harness and can be easily tucked away when not in use.
This harness is an extremely versatile piece of equipment that will assist you during intense tactical situations, making your job easier and safer while also providing additional storage space. The Blackhawk Commando Chest Harness is also compatible with other pouch configurations that can be added on as needed during specific missions.
This chest harness meets the needs of elite soldiers and special operations personnel. This lightweight yet robust vest is fully adjustable and offers ample storage space, including more than enough room for weapons, ammunition, equipment, and supplies. Its pack-cloth exterior looks professional and provides additional protection against moisture and weather. A MOLLE system allows further expansion groves to create a complete tactical suit.
- Its low profile
- Has a large pocket in the back
- It’s incredibly durable and built to last
- The shoulder straps are narrow and stiff
- It’s limited in adjustability
The Blackhawk Commando Chest Harness provides a low-profile platform for mounting MOLLE pouches and your sidearm. The mesh back panel offers ventilation to keep you cool during strenuous activity, and the hook-and-loop closure makes it easy to slip the harness on and off.
If you are running or working out at the gym, you need to ensure that your chest is secure during the whole workout. The BlackHawk Commando chest harness is a great solution for keeping your chest safe and supported during different activities where you will push yourself hard!
5.11 Tactical Tac Tec Plate Carrier for Ballistics and Training
The 5.11 Tactical Plate Carrier for ballistics and tac tec training has been designed to provide a real-world battle experience with the added benefit of protection. It comes with all the necessary components to integrate, attach or wear on your body and all the attachments needed to hold a variety of ballistic plates. It has fully adjustable straps to support various body types. The durable mesh lining is soft but breathable.
This is a lightweight, low-profile plate carrier capable of providing real-world impact protection from shrapnel and handgun threats. The carrier’s soft, mesh-lined interior can be equipped with a variety of hard or soft armor packages to meet various threat levels and mission requirements. Its sturdy hook and loop adjustable shoulder, side, and waist straps allow for customized fit and load support up to 100 lbs. There are multiple elastic utility pockets for storage that can accommodate magazines or hydration bladders.
- It’s comfortable, even with heavy gear loaded up in it
- It’s lightweight and has a low-profile design
- The material dries quickly
- The size of the carrier can be adjusted to fit your body type
- The vest does not come with plates or accessories, only the carrier itself
This tac tec plate carrier is a light weight ballistic panel carrier designed to increase your level of protection when used with hard-core tactical gear. The plate carrier is built with an adjustable internal cummerbund and detachable shoulder pads so it can be worn over or under soft body armor, vests and jackets. It attaches to plate carriers or other outer carriers via MOLLE for increased capacity and flexibility for mission changeouts.
Buying Guide: How to choose the tactical chest rig?
Choosing the right tactical chest rig is an important step, but it can be hard to know what to look for at first glance. We’re here to help.
The first step is to determine how you will use your chest rig. Is it primarily for storing ammunition? Will you need places to store larger items like a radio or a spare magazine?
Once you’ve got an idea of what you’ll use your chest rig for, consider the materials of the rig itself. Nylon, for example, is an extremely durable material that is easy to clean and maintain. It also comes in a variety of colors depending on your needs.
How many pockets do you need? If you are using it primarily for ammunition storage, it might be best to have no more than two pockets to easily access the ammunition without getting in the way of other tasks.
Consider other features such as MOLLE webbing and straps. These allow for greater customization and flexibility regarding what you can carry in your rig. So, which of these tactical chest rigs is right for you?
It depends. First, consider how frequently you will be using it. If this rig is going to be a part of your everyday life, you want something lightweight, comfortable, and easy to use. Make sure the straps are adjustable and padded to allow for maximum comfort. You may also want to consider something with a sleek design that can easily be integrated into your wardrobe.
On the other hand, if you only plan on using this tactical chest rig occasionally, then cost is likely to be a bigger factor in your decision-making process. Look for a less expensive option with fewer bells and whistles that will still serve its purpose when needed.
Next, think about what kind of gear you need to carry. If you are carrying lots of heavy equipment (like weapons), you’ll want something that has lots of pockets and compartments for storage as well as sturdy construction materials like ballistic nylon or Kevlar reinforced fabric. On the other hand, if all you’re looking for is somewhere safe to keep your wallet/keys/phone while out on an adventure trip—like hiking through the woods—then even something simple like an elastic band over one shoulder will do just fine.
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Frequently Asked Questions
The United States military uses several different chest rigs. US infantry units use the Improved Load Bearing Equipment (ILBE) system, which is designed to be used with a MOLLE rucksack and is made up of the main pack, a sustainment pouch, and a hydration carrier. The US Marines also use an ILBE kit.
A number of other chest rigs are also in use by various branches of the military, including the Minimalist Chest Rig (MCR) used by the Air Force, the Special Operations Forces Tactical Vest (SOFTV), which is used by the Green Berets, Navy SEALS, and Rangers, and the MICH/ACH helmet system used by the Marines.
Condor Recon makes some of the best chest rigs on the market, and for a good reason. Their product is designed with durability and utility in mind, so you know that you’re getting a product that will serve you well for years to come.
All of their chest rigs are made from high-quality materials, including nylon fabric and webbing. They are built to last and have a streamlined design that keeps them out of your way while still allowing access to your gear.
Chest rigs are worth it if you look for a lightweight way to carry your gear. A chest rig is a more versatile version of a fanny pack that keeps your hands free and all your stuff secure. It allows you to carry more than what can fit in your pockets and easily access everything you need.
Here’s a list of all the essential items you should have with you.
1. One-handed opening knife
2. Waterproof matchsticks
3. LED light with strobe function
4. High-intensity weapon light
5. Multipurpose tool (with pliers!)
6. Paracord in a durable nylon sheath
7. Orange, waterproof survival blanket
8. Compass and whistle for water purification tablets
9. 3 towelettes for cleaning equipment/skin/etc.
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When picking the best chest rig, you should consider several factors. First and foremost, you need to know your needs. Speed and freedom of movement will be paramount if you are primarily on the move. If you’re out in the elements a lot, you’ll need a bag that is weather resistant. If you’re carrying heavy items, you may want a chest rig with some padding for your shoulders and back.
Considering how much gear you are likely to carry, you can then look at the size of your chest rig of choice. Although bigger bags can carry more items, they tend to be less comfortable if they’re not packed full. Lighter bags are also easier to maneuver through tight spaces and will help keep fatigue at bay during long days in the field.
Next up is material choice—you want something durable that won’t fall apart at the first sign of wear or tear. The number of attachment points will also inform your decision; more is better when it comes to spreading out the weight load and customizing your setup for different situations.
Finally, look at style—chest rigs have evolved from military-style bags for carrying ammo into fully-fledged clothing accessories that look good on their own without being loaded down with heavy gear.
Every setup will be slightly different, so your best bet is to figure out what you want most in a chest rig and narrow your list down to just a few options. If you’re looking for a solid chest rig at a reasonable price, one of the five above will work perfectly. They all have their advantages, but ultimately it comes down to preference. I prefer the Condor Recon Chest rig as it is durable and can hold a lot at once.
Corporal Dalton is a former Infantry Rifleman who served with 3rd Battalion 1st Marines. After leaving the Marine Corps, he started an online business where he focuses on teaching self-defense tactics. His two major passions are hiking and shooting guns. He has been a member of the NRA since he was 6 years old and is a strong supporter of the second amendment.