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Thread: Used and beat up genuine military surplus > reproduced "mil spec" crap

  1. #1

    Default Used and beat up genuine military surplus > reproduced "mil spec" crap

    I bought a used genuine military sustainment pouch from craigslist and I liked it so much I looked on ebay and bought a new "mil spec" one and it's utter crap. Materials were worse and the stitching was horrible.


  2. #2
    Administrator Rick's Avatar
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    You have just learned a valuable lesson in marketing. "Mil-spec" and military surplus are steads of different hues. Not the same thing at all. Welcome to the club. We've all been suckered in at one time or another. By the way, if you are unhappy with your eBay purchase, send it back.

  3. #3

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    Good point on returning it, but I'm afraid I won't get much back after the return shipping. I did leave feedback warning other shoppers.

    BTW I really love the look of the forum, I think it's the best looking outdoors forum out there. Good job!

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    Senior Member hunter63's Avatar
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    Most of my Mil-spec purchases...is from surplus store...even though much is NOT surplus...just new stuff made in "The style of"...the military version.
    Only advantage is to actually dig around and look at it myself.

    Working in manufacturing for many years...that produced Mil-spec wire rope
    This meant that a minimum of a government supplied list of specifications be followed....that that may only mean size or color.
    Lot's of wiggle room
    Then you have Quote>"Mill-spec"<quote...is a trad mark meant to draw you in.

    It's like saying....
    Beer...Mil-409-12 oz in alum can .....
    Doesn't say it Good beer.....just beer.

    I had purchased several Chinese "gas mask" style bags....or rucksack....thinking they made better stuff for their own guys, than the cheap crap they sell us.....Nope...guess they put up with cheap crap as well ....LOL
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  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by hunter63 View Post
    Most of my Mil-spec purchases...is from surplus store...even though much is NOT surplus...just new stuff made in "The style of"...the military version.
    Only advantage is to actually dig around and look at it myself.

    Working in manufacturing for many years...that produced Mil-spec wire rope
    This meant that a minimum of a government supplied list of specifications be followed....that that may only mean size or color.
    Lot's of wiggle room
    Then you have Quote>"Mill-spec"<quote...is a trad mark meant to draw you in.

    It's like saying....
    Beer...Mil-409-12 oz in alum can .....
    Doesn't say it Good beer.....just beer.

    I had purchased several Chinese "gas mask" style bags....or rucksack....thinking they made better stuff for their own guys, than the cheap crap they sell us.....Nope...guess they put up with cheap crap as well ....LOL
    Thanks for the info brother! It's sucks, most of the "surplus" stores around me sells new cheap "military inspired" gear.

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    Senior Member hunter63's Avatar
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    True Dat............
    When some one gets a wiff of a good deal on a good product we try to pass it along.
    Just realize that mil-spec doesn't mean much
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  7. #7

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    To me this thread further reinforced the notion that you should always read reviews first. And always be extra suspicious of anything claiming to be "Military grade." Because as a Canadian I know that "military grade" could very well mean someone else's old, beat up, neglected garbage with a shiny new coat of paint.

    "When tyranny becomes law, rebellion becomes duty."

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  8. #8

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    after the vietnam war had ended in the late 70's the surplus market was flooded
    for years with the eccess gear. it was all issue eqpt,
    then sometime in the 80's the asians Korea/china entered the market
    with CHEAP knockoffs, jungle boots that would fall off your feet after 2wks in the jungle.
    i bought a pair i know.
    coyotes listen to them, like children of the night what music they make.

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    Senior Member kyratshooter's Avatar
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    There is a reason for the proliferation of mil-spec rather than military surplus gear and it is the way the military sells surplus gear. I was in the business for years and it involves the blind purchase of "containers" where the dealer bids on a closed and unknown shipping container of "whatever" the quartermaster corps decided to part with that day. It could be a container filled with torn up parachutes, tanker helmets, cafeteria trays or bars of gold bullion, you never know when you bid.

    I have seen dealers bid on containers only to build a fire and burn the entire unsalable contents as it was pulled out of the container.

    It is much easier and less risky to stock your store with inventory from Rothco or Sportsman's Guide where you can order an exact item as a dozen each rather than find your profit as 25 ALICE packs at the back of a truck stuffed behind 5,000 torn up parachutes.

    Most of the real "surplus" from small shops is bought from individuals, which is why the best surplus stores are in "base towns". They are buying from the quartermaster NCOs who grab the discarded gear by the pickup load before it goes through the normal channels. Can we say "black market"?

    There is also the excess gear stolen from units and sold in small lots to the local dealers. Even back in the 1970s we had to leave a guard in the barracks 24/7 to keep people from entering the barracks and stealing all the blankets off the beds, stripping visible web gear and hauling away the lockers and bunks.

    We had a group of thieves back up to company HQ at 1am with a "duce and a half" accompanied by a Major with full paperwork to transfer every weapon in the armory to another unit. The Buck Sgt on duty did not know the difference, did not call anyone, and let them load everything up. Top came in the next morning and nearly had a heart attack. TOE weapons for an entire rifle company was now on the black(surplus) market. We are talking 200 M16 rifles, couple of dozen 1911s, around 16 M60s and 8-10 90mm recoiless rifes. I really saw the effects of $#!t running downhill that day.

    As I said, I ran a surplus store for years and the only real surplus I ever saw I bought from guys that had just gotten off the buss with their final issue stuffed in a duffel bag, or from shady characters with a pickup truck full of canteens, alice packs or Micky Mouse boots from God knows where.

    I had to be very careful, one of my regular customers was an FBI agent.
    Last edited by kyratshooter; 05-08-2017 at 10:44 AM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by kyratshooter View Post
    " ... We had a group of thieves back up to company HQ at 1am with a "duce and a half" accompanied by a Major with full paperwork to transfer every weapon in the armory to another unit. The Buck Sgt on duty did not know the difference, did not call anyone, and let them load everything up. Top came in the next morning and nearly had a heart attack. TOE weapons for an entire rifle company was now on the black(surplus) market. We are talking 200 M16 rifles, couple of dozen 1911s, around 16 M60s and 8-10 90mm recoiless rifes. I really saw the effects of $#!t running downhill that day. ..."
    That is an interesting story, Kyratshooter. What happened to those involved and did they ever recover the weapons??

    I would think a bunch of soldiers ended up in Leavenworth for a long, long time. (???)

    S.M.
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    Administrator Rick's Avatar
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    You used to be able to go to the base and see what they had for bid. You could look over the items but you were not allowed to rummage through the boxes, start vehicles, etc. Looky but no touchy. Then 10 years ago everything went online and the bases no longer sell anything. The stuff is still out there you just have to bid sight unseen (other than the pictures they post) on govliquidation.com or some other site.

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    Senior Member hunter63's Avatar
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    Friend of mine, a disabled vet.... had a surplus store.
    He had the imformation from somewhere, about what and where stuff was being sold off.

    Was bidding and buying stuff by the "lot".
    Stopped in to visit as he was going thru some crates of women's fatigues...mostly all Extra Small, wool cotton blend "long johns" labeled "Drawers"....a few field jackets ..........
    And a big box of "weather balloons"......they were rolled up and wrapped in a paper package, ...about the size of a pack of cigarettes.
    When opened...and unrolled, looked like a wrinkled up, 30" condom.

    Brought a few home....and had one in my leather jacket pocket.
    Different friend and I stopped at a saloon, after work 2nd shift 11:30.

    Several girl/ladies were out with friends, seems like a bachelorette party..... kinda toasted, loud having a good time.
    On says real loud, "Men never take responsibility ....women are supposed to take the pill or other protection....men...Nothing"

    She looks at me and says...."You, ....I'll bet you don't carry any birth control protection....."
    I said.... "Of course I do......"
    I reached in my pocket...took out the weather balloon...unwrapped it and rolled out 30" on the bar"

    All I heard was a loud "OMG".......LOL

    Should have labeled it "Medium"
    Last edited by hunter63; 05-08-2017 at 04:09 PM.
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    Now that right there is funny I don't care who you are.

    I carry birth control too. It's call my face. (shrug)

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    Senior Member kyratshooter's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Seniorman View Post
    That is an interesting story, Kyratshooter. What happened to those involved and did they ever recover the weapons??

    I would think a bunch of soldiers ended up in Leavenworth for a long, long time. (???)

    S.M.

    I do not know the long term results, I was just a lowly platoon leader and fortunately the buck sgt on duty was not from my platoon.

    The guard team, Top, CO and XO disappeared before lunch and I knew better than to ask where they went.
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