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.
Next up is a unique offering from Milwaukee Custom Kydex – their Rapid Access Comms Carrier. While many of the features of the RACC are available on other pouches, this is the only one in our line-up that is molded from a thermoplastic. From their website:
The Rapid Access Comms Carrier (RACC) is truly a one of a kind product 100% made in USA. We build the RACC unit because we saw a common issue of frequent access to your comms being difficult or a longer process than it should be. The RACC is a fold out radio carrier granting the user swift control over his/her communication channels.
With the RACC being made of high quality Kydex T chemical resistant plastic this unit offers more perks than any Nylon pouch ever could. Featuring a hard protective layer over your radio, adjustable tension hinge for “hands-free” operation, cutout access to your PTT (while still preventing hotmic), access to speaker plugs, volume knobs, and channel knobs. Even cable management if you can get creative! Check out the specs for yourself.
.080″ Kydex T with P1 Haircell Texture
Adjustable Injection Molded Nylon Hinge
Rubber Coated Nylon Strap with Pull the Dot Snap (PTD)
Shock Cord Retainers
Modular Mounting Placard
MPS Compatible (Coming Soon)
Tactical Tailor MALICE Clips
WARFYTR Cinch Hooks
G-Code RTI (#33,#34,and #35)
Safariland MLS, and ELS
Probably the biggest positive of this pouch is the level of protection it offers. Since it is formed from a thermoplastic, it’s going to be even tougher than the heavy webbing or Cordura used in other pouches. It is also molded around the side buttons, allowing purposeful access to the push-to-talk while minimizing accidental contact.
Second, it has the fold-out feature that makes manipulating the radio without removing it from the pouch simple.
Third, it has a very high level of retention, due to the combination of molding and the shock cord that hold the radio in the pouch. It doesn’t have a secondary retention, per se, but when tested using the same criteria as the other pouches, it retained the radio much longer under physical exertion.
Fourth, it is drilled to take a variety of mounting options, which they sell on their website and are also available from multiple aftermarket sellers.
The first con off the top of my head would be the concerns about cracking due to constant flex, specifically at the bottom of the pouch where the hinge attaches. However, if this were to occur, it would likely take a very long time before it became a problem. Hinge durability may also be a question, but it seems very sturdy, at least that is my impression right now. Durability of either piece will be something that will need to be evaluated over the long term.
Another concern would be possible noise from the Kydex scraping against environmental items. To be fair, however, this would also be a concern if you use a plastic holster, so it is not unique to this pouch.
Because of the fact that it’s molded Kydex, it is a little bulkier than the fabric options. There’s not really a way to reduce this and I look at it as the price of the protection you’re getting from the heavier material.
Lastly, I do wish it had a 90 degree limiter on it, but as I said, it has fantastic retention, so that is less of a concern to me at this point.
I really like the outside the box thinking on this pouch. It offers a high level of protection, while also ensuring solid functionality and manipulation of the radio. If you’re interested in taking a chance and stepping outside the realm of fabrics, this is an intriguing option.
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