Communications is key in any operation. Fortunately, today there is a lot of interest in communications, as well as a lot of affordable options in that realm. Entire Facebook groups and internet forums exist to discuss radios and their uses. To me, this is awesome.
However, one thing that I haven’t seen a lot of discussion on is actually putting the gear on the kit and how/why it gets mounted. I’m not saying the discussion doesn’t occur at all, just that what I’ve seen is mostly people showing pictures of radios mounted, but with no background on what led them to mount in that way. With that said, I’d like to give my thoughts on some mounting options for the Baofeng UV-5R/F8HP.
Up next in our series on pouches for the Baofeng UV-5R/BF-F8HP is the ITS Tactical 10-4 Radio Pouch. From the ITS Tactical website:
Our ITS 10-4 Radio Pouch™ is lightweight and skeletonized, offering rapid acquisition, ultimate retention and multiple mounting methods for Baofeng UV-5R style radios (transceivers) with extended batteries.
The 10-4 Radio Pouch™ doesn’t impede any functional operation of your Baofeng radio, leaving buttons and ports that are important during use, ready and available. While it’s possible that other radios on the market of similar size can be utilized with the 10-4, we can’t guarantee the fit. Please refer to the dimensions below for specifics.
Our patent-pending 4-Way Mounting System™ allows you to mount the 10-4 Radio Pouch™ vertically on a duty belt, vertically to MOLLE (PALS webbing), horizontally on a belt or even vertically on a backpack or chest rig strap. The mounting possibilities are truly limitless.
This revolutionary pouch features four built-in levels of retention, first using the interior opening elastic base to align the radio into place. Next, the adjustable shock cord locks in the radio while still allowing easy insertion and removal. Additionally, the integrated shock cord hook-strip facilitates faster operational access and stowage, providing temporary on-the-go closure retention. Lastly, the webbing pull-tab top closure provides the final retention strap for ultimate security.
The ITS 10-4 Radio Pouch™ features an integrated DoubleDuty™ retractor pocket, designed to hold either of the two optional (and available for sale separately) retractors. Acting as a dummy cord, either retractor prevents unintentional loss of your radio during removal and won’t leave unnecessary cordage hanging around.
Radio Compatibility Measurement – Approximately 6” Tall x Up To 2.5” Wide x Up To 1.5” Deep
Of the pouches I’ve tested so far, this one is by far the most versatile. Not only can you mount the pouch on your MOLLE gear, but you can mount it on your belt both vertically and horizontally, and you can use the attached One-Wrap to secure it on other objects, like backpack straps. As far as weight and durability, it come in between the heavy-duty Tactical Tailor pouch and the minimalist Beez Combat Systems pouch.
First, the versatility is easily the pouches largest positive. While the other pouches could probably be worn vertically on a belt as well as on MOLLE, the fact that this one can be worn four different ways is a major plus.
Second, the pouch has some solid initial retention on its own, but also has the ability to mount a secondary retention system (that ITS also sells here and here). This is definitely a cool feature, as it allows the radio to be removed from the pouch, but still retained.
Third, the pouch has a limiting feature that prevents it from opening past 90 degrees. This is nice because if you need to go hands off to work with accessories or work with navigation gear, etc., the radio’s display will still be in a visible position.
First, I love the fact that ITS offers the secondary lanyards. But, the fact that I have to pay $10 to $24 on top of the $39.99 pouch cost for the feature is a bit of a negative for me. I would prefer a simple bungee retainer like the Beez pouch included. As configured, the pouch will not retain the radio under physical exertion if the primary retention is disabled.
Second, like with the Beez pouch, there is no protection for the buttons on the side of the radio when it is mounted.
Third, you have to be a little careful when initially fitting the radio in the pouch, as it is a little oversized for the UV-5R and if you don’t pay attention, you could easily cover the display or keypad, or even accidentally lay the bungee cord across the push to talk.
Fourth, because of how the pouch was designed to make it more versatile, it is very sloppy when used in its MOLLE configuration. It does not sit tightly against the carrier and tends to flop from side to side under movement.
The strength of this pouch is in its versatility. To be honest, if I were an individual that intended to use a pouch solely in a MOLLE configuration, I would not purchase this one. However, if I needed a pouch to wear in any of the other configurations, I would take this pouch under serious consideration.
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