TMC LBT0292D Chest Rig (Khaki)

I found a whole bunch of these TMC LBT0292D Chest Rigs in the warehouse at work… they were brought in and pretty much never sold. I figure its mainly because both the staff and customers at work have no idea how cool this chest rig really is. The real LBT 0292D chest rig was commonly used by US SF soldiers in the early-2000’s. The 0292D is also often seen in pictures of US Navy SWCC (pictured below). They were usually fielded in OD, khaki, or black.

My TMC LBT0292D clone chest rig is khaki. Note that the TMC khaki tone sometimes appears as green or as tan, or a mixture of the two – as illustrated in the additional pictures after the break. This is largely dependent on the light, but I don’t really mind as this colour is not harsh on my eyes. This khaki doesn’t match Eagle, Flyye or Pantac coyote brown particularly well, as it is noticeably lighter looking.

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The 0292D design features lots of versatile sewn-on pouches (it is thus considered a “static” chest rig with no modular attachments). Detailed pictures and my usages of the various pouches on this chest rig are in my review after the break.

As are clearly visible in the picture above, there are 3 front magazine pouches that are secured by both velcro and buckle closures – this works great for me, as I can quickly and easily access mags on the fly. If need be, I could always apply sheets of loop velcro to silence the ripping noises of velcro when I go for a mag. These pouches are capable of holding up to 2 M4 (pictured below) or AK74 magazines. I ran 2 Beta Project AK mid-cap mags inside each of these pouches last week.

The side box mag/GP pouches are also secured by both velcro and buckle closures.

There are also smaller, double-ended tubular pouches riding on top of the GP/box mag pouches. These are closed with both a snap and velcro, with a small tab hanging off the end of each lid for quicker access. On my right, I’ve stuffed a tourniquet, though I hope I should never have to use it – at least I know its there.

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The box mag/GP pouches are huge. They could probably accommodate either a M60 100rd or M249 200rd box mag – that’s what they’re designed to carry. In my case, I’ve stuffed 6 M4 mags into the right pouch.

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The left pouch holds a canteen and whatever else I need to stuff in there. When I wore this chest rig last week, I had a canteen, BB’s, a speed loader, and various sets of batteries stored in there. Pictured is a canteen, 2 M4 mags and a red “dead rag.”

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In the smaller pouch above the left GP pouch, I’ve got a gas charger stuffed in there. I could fit 40mm grenade shells in these pouches if I’d like, though I couldn’t find a decent way to strap my stand-alone M203 onto this chest rig and will likely never utilize this rig in that capacity.

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The radio pouch on the left side of the 0292D is absolutely huge – my United Star AN/PRC-148 MBITR clone floats in there if not secured within the internal elastic loop. There is an adjustable-length paracord fastener with velcro on either end that holds a radio in the chest rig.

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The pouch is actually big enough for me to easily carry another M4 magazine in front of my radio, and with a few millimeters of wiggle room left. I may sew a strip of elastic around the pouch, in order to be a little more secure. I’m not entirely sure what the real LBT 0292D integrated radio pouch was initially designed to carry, nor do I know if the TMC’s radio pouch is the same dimensions.

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Above the front magazine pouches, there is a small, velcro-lidded pouch in a horizontal orientation. The lid is a bit too short for me to hold a P226 or M9 magazine there with adequate retention, though the width of the pouch seems better suited to a double stack pistol magazine. Instead, I keep my China-made Gerber-clone EOD multi-tool  here.

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Underneath this pouch is the access to the large admin pouch hidden beneath the upper halves of the various other pouches on the front of the chest rig. I’m not entirely sure how large this pouch is, as I don’t really use this flat admin pouch; I generally don’t carry documents or other thin items on my rig – if I am indeed carrying those for whatever reason, I will usually stuff those into my BDU pockets instead. I did secure my 5.11 Tactical folding knife here via the belt clip, as I couldn’t easily access it in my usual pants pocket location while wearing my Safariland 6004 drop-leg holster over the weekend. The lid to this admin pouch is secured with two button snaps.

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The shoulder straps are worn in a X fashion, crossing over between my shoulder blades. They aren’t particularly wide, but they do have this really comfortable, low profile padding sewn behind the straps. These straps have release buckles on each end and are adjusted by threading material through tri-glide buckles.

The single kidney strap is secured by a large buckle on the left side only. This is adjustable via this buckle. It tends to slowly loosen up over time. Probably adding a tri-glide would prevent this from loosening up.

There are 4 integrated belt loops, though I will probably never use these. I could hang stuff of off these though.

Note the many, many drainage grommets on the bottom of all the pouches.

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Not pictured in my review are the included box mag pouch covers as found in most dedicated ammo pouches – 2 pieces of elastic form a very secure pouch opening that is easy to insert stuff into but difficult for the contents of the pouch to come out, even with the lid open. Also not pictured is the two pieces that can be attached via velcro and secured in place under nylon loops inside the rightmost front magazine pouch – you can convert this magazine pouch into a pistol holster with thumb break retention (in addition to the lid of the pouch), at the expense of loosing the capability to store rifle mags inside the pouch at the same time. I’m not using either of these two included features as they’re not particularly practical or useful for the way I stash my stuff inside this 0292D.

For reference, when you search for images of the LBT 0292D, you will generally find pictures of SWCC rocking them in OD or Black. Below is one of the made-to-order items from LBT for US Navy SWCC – this photo shows a customized 0292D with thicker shoulder straps/pads that I’ve read somewhere was apparently done from the factory, as per an order for SWCC crewmen.

I was at one time really wanting to do a SWCC kit after the movie Act of Valor came out, but the few reference pictures and lack of information in general out there on the stuff that they carry and why they use those items made me stop pursuing that. Well, that and wearing a SWCC crewman’s gear isn’t exactly the most practical kit for use when you don’t play anywhere close to water or boats with large machine guns.

Either way, this is one really cool piece of gear that is generally not seen on the field. I’m looking forward to rocking mine in a 2002-2003 US military look with DCU’s… when I get around to that.

-juice

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