Who/what is Haley Strategic Partners (HSP)?
If you want a full bio, google Travis Haley and also HSP, but in short, HSP started as a training/consultative company building on from Haley’s time with Magpul/Magpul Dynamics, who’ve started to move into the tactical nylon market with a few choice items, this chest rig being the ‘flagship’ as it were.
The chest rig
As I mentioned in the gear considerations post, chest rigs come in two types, basic MOLLE to let you fill it up with the pouches of your choice, and pre-built (hybrids exist too but less commonly). The Haley D3 rig is pre-built, with no ability to remove pouches. You can add two additional bolt ons, in the form of two mag pouches, and an admin pouch via the Velcro on the rear if you so choose. You can also fit one of the Incog holsters in one of the pouches (or use the Velcro holster pouch that is available) but for the most part it’s a like it or lump it deal.
This is only a bad thing if you don’t like the layout/style of pouches, otherwise if you do get along with it this is probably better than MOLLE as there is no chance for a pouch to come loose (as unlikely as that is) and there’s no fiddling with pouch straps to be had.
So what do you get for your money?
4x M4 or AK (7.62 or 5.45)
2x ‘Multi mission’ pouches – suitable for pistol mags or multi tools
2x Flapped GP pouches
1x ‘Stuffit’ pouch which can hold smokes/comms/water bottle or cinched down flat.
So whilst you can’t chop and change pouches at will, you can run the two most common platforms without needing to buy new pouches.
You can hook the chest rig up in two ways, one as a bog standard chest rig using the H harness, or if you have a suitable plate carrier, attach it directly through the use of swift clips/Velcro panel on the back so you can have a ready made pouch lay out (and less needed for airsoft you can have armour protection).
This is how it looks stand alone, although I have used the velcro backing to hook it up to my replica PACA, and then use the H harness for additional security. I don’t have an AK platform to be able to test out the pouches for size on them, but I have no reason to doubt the Haley Strategic advertising on that. M4 mags fit snuggly and can be secured with the bungee retention – and the pull tabs on the Haley rig are much better than the usual thin piece of nylon you get on most bungees, definitely something that you can get a good grip on whilst wearing gloves/wet/covered in god knows what). Probably because its new and hasn’t been worked in much, I did find that the bungee cord was very tight over the top of the mags, so whilst you definitely won’t find any mags jumping loose from this rig, they do slow down mag changes a little bit, but I imagine with some use, they’ll slacken a bit.
The two multi-mission pouches fit two short XDM pistol mags perfectly (P226 mags also fit well, as do 1911 mags (although these were slightly loose in the pouches when compared to double stack mags)). Or can also load these up with a multitool and knife and you’ve got the same, thicker, retention tabs featured here. The ‘Stuff-It’ pouch is the pouch to the left of the pistol mags on the picture about and is incredibly verstile – as the name suggests, you can stuff it with whatever you fancy and then adjusted the pull cord for suitable retention – stuff that it happily accepts are: SWAT VTGs, water bottles, G3 mags, pyro, and I’m sure there is more you can get in there too. The two small utility pouches are velcro closure, so nothing to write home about, but they do their job well and a couple of team mates have found that they are the perfect size for a packet of smokes so quite handy if you want to carry them into the field.
For a fixed line rig, I don’t think there is much better available on the market right now – you can get this thing in RG, MC, Coyote, Kryptek Highlander, Mandrake, Nomad, Typhoon and classic black. Some of the chest rigs from London Bridge Trading (LBT) will probably match this for pouch lay out and quality but you are then looking for similar money or more, and its also very light so the only weight you’re carrying is what you put into it. Therefore I feel as a fixed pouch chest rig, I can only give this thing: