View Full Version : New to Kirafu, need a pack

El Mac
06-08-2009, 04:09 PM
I'd like to get a pack for an upcoming deployment to Afghanistan. I'm new to Kirafu but understand they are top of the line gear. I see where there are some available '08 models now vs. having to wait for '09 gear to be built. Some questions for you knowledgable folks:

1) Is the '09 gear worth the wait? (i.e., deploy with current crap and wait for an overseas "Christmas" gift or look at whats available now?)
2) What model seems to be in favor for troops in the 'stan?


06-08-2009, 05:44 PM
What will you be using it for? A patrol pack with your 1st and 2nd line gear or are you looking for a rucksack? There are people here who can help as they have been where you are going. You can also check out lightfighter.net, they have a crapload of info and informed members there who are BTDTs.

06-09-2009, 09:26 AM
If you go with a kifaru pack, call and tell them you are deploying and when.

IIRC, you will go to the front of the line, as you should.

06-09-2009, 05:36 PM
Depends heavily on what you are doing and how you will get there. My sense is that meat-eater ops in the 'stan will be run further away from the FOBs, with more time away from the FOBs, and involve more movement, over longer distances, on foot. Makes my default suggestion an AG1.

My first Kifaru purchase was a Navigator and Scout setup (which evolved to a Pointman and Scout setup), and those are the packs I have always come back to. I used a Navigator in the 'stan and it functioned with the best attributes of an assault pack (with large capacity) and a ruck (that compacted down ALMOST to the size of an assault pack). Same for the Pointman I used in Iraq...

I haven't personally tried the Armor Grip setup, but Kifaru doesn't design in a vacuum so that may be the way to go. I'm bringing my armor to the demo, hopefully Mel & Patrick trust me to take a walk around the grounds at the demo. (I know they sent at least one order to my home, so they know where I live).

I might be offending the sensibilities of the Zulu/Marauder crowd but here's the thing... I never had good luck integrating a Zulu with armor. The Marauder was better. Yes they are both Omni packs but the Zulu gets weird when you load it the way a top-loader needs to be packed (with important stuff like ammo, IVs, comms and batts on top) then don it over armor.

If you plan on leaving the FOB rarely, or anticipate short-duration ops that don't involve significant moves on foot with armor, the Marauder will likely be a better choice. Get a belt...

The common thread? For use outside the wire a panel loader is the way to go. One user (who posts here and on LF--HUGE +1 for getting some SA over there) was able to kill his zipper.

I have used a Scout as an assault pack on short duration jobs (and a not-so-short duration job or two) but always with vehicular support.

If you haven't already, order a G2 Claymore, E&E, Organizer, Medium Pod and a Woobie NOW.

Hope this helps...

Teacher in CA
06-09-2009, 07:08 PM
For military operations with vehicle support.. I would use a Marauder with belt. Having a panel loader helps when you have to fill every nook and cranny of the pack. In addition to the pack, plan on purchasing Long Pockets, Claymores, and Pods. I use a long pocket for trauma kit/boo-boo kit, and the other long pockets for those handy to have things so you won't have to dig so much into the pack. I don't know if you plan to put MOLLE pouches inside the pack.. The Marauder can do that, but I haven't outfitted it that way..

I have an Gen1 MMR, but never fielded it in battle, training..sure... so I can offer no real-life experience using a top-loader in combat... However..I packed a lot of ammo in the MMR. Very comfortable hauling things around.. On my MMR, I have the gun-bearer which helped stow the rifle whenever you are getting up over big rocks. Don't know if your terrain will require mules and camels, which should lighten your pack loadout. Whatever the case.. Either ArmorGrips (1or2) can do unsupported operations with external pouches (claymores/ long pockets/ pods).

06-09-2009, 07:32 PM
Hey Straps, no problem humping an AG pack around with your armor. There's actually a creek bed down the end of the street from the demo site where you can get in some off-trail work. See you there!


06-10-2009, 08:13 AM
+1 to the Marauder, Long Pockets, Woobie, Organizer & E&E.

Not in the Military, but I can tell you that those items are what I use the most over here. the modularity and multi-purpose uses of those items really shine when you are not sure what you will be doing from day to day. Agree on the belt for the Marauder. Right now, as I'm at a FOB for a while and not flying around, I've got my Maruader weighted up with abour 30 lbs of water bottles and I put it on to go on a 2 mile walk around the FOB every morning.

I also use my Pods a bit, but I could probably do without them. (blasphemy, I know, but it's true...)

The cool thing about the above setup is that it can all compact into 1 large ruck for movements, and then be split into smaller ones for various types of patrols and other stuff. There was very little I could not do with the above and a duffle bag.

As far as G1 Vs G2, well that's a personal call. I have all G1 stuff, including an EMR that I use for backpacking, and I have been perfectly happy with them. At the moment, I'm trying to decide myslef if I want to get a 08 G1 Express or a G2 Express for dayhiking when I get back.

Decisions, decisions...

Good luck either way and stay safe over there.

06-10-2009, 09:24 AM
Hey Straps, along with your armor, could you also bring your "contoured" Pointman to the demo? Thanks.


06-10-2009, 09:58 AM
What is a "contoured" Pointman? Hmmmm...my curiosity is aroused.

Any pics Straps or is it a classified mod? :D

06-10-2009, 10:51 AM
Haha my "countoured" Pointman is a G1 Pointman with the stays bent crazily so that it can be worn with armor. As I posted above, it was my experience that the Wrap Tech (Pointman and Navigator) carried best with armor. The only issue was getting the hip pad onto my hips. Bending the stays sort of like a fork or spoon (as seen from the side) allows this to happen.

Few caveats:

First, I was wearing a CIRAS with the then-new Paraclete lightweight SAPIs (which was adopted for the AWG test loadout that recently attracted all that attention because some big Army types who never walk outside the wire got their feelings hurt :(), and a MOLLE "War Belt" first line (see LF.net if you have questions about what this entails). I've since migrated to a Crye Blast Belt. In both setups, I got in the habit of carrying a large horizontal utility pouch (BAE Eclipse IIRC) full of dressings, gauze and other lightweight medical consummables (we were with indigs who developed a talent for getting themselves hurt en masse) as an "interface" between the War Belt and the hip pad. The IBA and the IOTV still go down too far (if worn doctrinally correct, that is ;)) to put a War Belt below. Looks like Big Army is getting the message, however, and "operator cut" armor (CIRAS/RAV) could become the norm...

Second, Pointman carries really, really strangely WITHOUT armor with the stays bent in this fashion. Under weight they will actualy straighten themselves back out.

I will bring my armor (currently a CIRAS with "training" SAPIs), Blast Belt and Pointman and take some pics of a G1 and G2 loadout. I suck at pics b/c when I'm "working" the op-tempo is too high or the folks I attach to kind of frown on recreational photography.

06-11-2009, 02:36 AM
Oh, I thought it was a "super stealth" mod with improved aerodynamic lift. :o

Thanks, Straps and have fun at the demo!