Fake vs surplus

Items to keep you alive in the event you must evacuate: discussions of basic Survival Kits commonly called "Bug Out Bags" or "Go Bags"

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Fake vs surplus

Post by Usnlynx » Sat Mar 23, 2013 7:48 pm

Been looking at the surplus store lately looking at rucks to finally build that BOB. As expected, lots surplus ALICE packs and frames in varying levels of..."well used" to down right "distressed". Then there were some brand new looking rucks and frames for about $100.00 combined. My question is, is there a way to tell whether an ALICE pack and/or frame are US surplus or Chinese crap?

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ninja steve
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Re: Fake vs surplus

Post by ninja steve » Sat Mar 23, 2013 8:03 pm

One way is to see what the label says. It should have an NSN number and some washing instructions. Although a good fake might have an NSN also? A lot of the ones on ebay seemed legit.

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Re: Fake vs surplus

Post by Doctorr Fabulous » Sat Mar 23, 2013 8:14 pm

ninja steve wrote:One way is to see what the label says. It should have an NSN number and some washing instructions. Although a good fake might have an NSN also? A lot of the ones on ebay seemed legit.
Plenty of fakes have the NSNs.
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Re: Fake vs surplus

Post by ghost792 » Sat Mar 23, 2013 8:30 pm

Another clue is the color/pattern. USGI Large ALICE packs were only made in OD green, except for a few in coyote made for the USMC FILBE trials. These are marked "test article c" and are likely very rare.). Issue large ALICE packs were never made in an camo pattern (unless in very small numbers for testing). The medium was only made in OD green and woodland camo.

Issue packs should have "US" stenciled somewhere on the lid and an FSN/NSN somewhere on the back, along with the name of the maker. The frame should also be stamped "US" and have some indication as to maker.

ALICE packs were only made of nylon and only in medium and large. There are some places that sell a "small ALICE" pack, sometimes in canvas. These are not USGI.

ALICE packs were made for 30 or 40 years, so there are some variations in minor details like type of buckles over the years. This is a fairly comprehensive description of these changes.

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Re: Fake vs surplus

Post by Usnlynx » Sat Mar 23, 2013 9:43 pm

Thanks for the inputs thus far. I have noticed the various contract stamps on the shoulder straps and kidney belts. The one that sparked my attention, funny enough, was "Lucky Penguin Co"... If that's not a Chinese company...lol I just wish there was either a "Made in the USA" or "Made in China" tag on the packs and frames. Not that "Chinese made" is necessarily crap, it's more of a principle thing with me...lol

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Re: Fake vs surplus

Post by TacAir » Sat Mar 23, 2013 9:56 pm

As with many things in life, buying from a reputable dealer is the way to go.

Gunny's Surplus will sell you an almost new or new ALICE ruck set up (frame + bag) for about 50 USD.

I've used the firm and found the service and goods to be outstanding.

Good luck

We have a guy here. selling good used ALICE rucks for 25 dollars. It pays to check CL and look around.

Key words to watch for are "military style" a sure indicator of a cheap knockoff.
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Re: Fake vs surplus

Post by KnightoftheRoc » Sat Mar 23, 2013 11:21 pm

I always look for the manufacturer's tag, to see where they are located. It's not a thing that can't be faked, but... Generally, if you give the pack a good looking over, tugging at straps and seams to see what kind of shape it's in, you can do pretty well, regardless of who made it. Now, if your buying mail-order or online, obviously you can't do this, and it's much more of a crap shoot. So, going with a reputable dealer is much more important.

FWIW, I prefer to use the frame on the medium pack- I find it's much more comfortable than without a frame.
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Re: Fake vs surplus

Post by Woods Walker » Sun Mar 24, 2013 12:31 am

If it says Rothco on the label it is fake.

Welcome to ZS. I was serious about that Rothco thing. :lol:
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Re: Fake vs surplus

Post by Boondock » Sun Mar 24, 2013 8:59 am

Woods Walker wrote:If it says Rothco on the label it is fake.
Yup.

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Re: Fake vs surplus

Post by crypto » Sun Mar 24, 2013 9:04 am

I bought a Hellcat pack for $50 and it's pretty solid.

USGI ALICE pack (medium or large) on a MOLLE frame with Molle straps and belt.

Much mo betta than an ALICE.
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Re: Fake vs surplus

Post by Usnlynx » Sun Mar 24, 2013 10:31 pm

I do really like the Hellcat idea. I see most tend to be built around the medium ALICE. I suspect that is mostly due to the excess frame below the medium ruck acting as support for the additional pack that hangs below the ALICE ruck. Making that assumption, I am thinking of possibly attaching some aluminum rods to the frame, below the kidney belt frame, to support the extra pack that would hang below a large ALICE ruck (to keep the extra pack from bouncing off your butt).

Thoughts?

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Re: Fake vs surplus

Post by moab » Sun Mar 24, 2013 11:59 pm

http://www.tonystactical.com" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false; is a good place too. Best prices I have seen. And all of his stuff is legit. All he does is surplus pretty much. He sells a hellcat too. For a real good price.
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Re: Fake vs surplus

Post by crypto » Mon Mar 25, 2013 12:12 am

Eh, my main reason for liking the Hellcat isnt whats on bottom, its the fact that the frame goes higher up on top. The molle shoudler straps have load-lifters on them, and make heavy loads FAR more comfortable than the ALICE pack.
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Re: Fake vs surplus

Post by Evan the Diplomat » Mon Mar 25, 2013 12:18 am

If your budget is $100, look for commercial backpacks on sale. I scored a 75 liter internal capacity for under $100.
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Re: Fake vs surplus

Post by livinitup » Fri Apr 26, 2013 12:26 pm

I'd be more concerned with the quality of the pack rather than who makes it. Not everything imported is crap and they tend to be cheaper. Might also be a good idea to look at what you're using it for. If its a BOB thats going to sit in a closet until a bug-out situation, im more likely to buy something cheaper rather than spending more on something that you would use more say for regular hiking or edc.

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Re: Fake vs surplus

Post by Unobtainium » Fri Apr 26, 2013 7:06 pm

Is a surplus molle ruck an option?

When I was hunting for a BOB last, I got a large molle ruck with newest gen frame, all straps etc. for less than $80 US (not incl shipping). It is a big pack already, and the pals webbing means that mine also runs three sustainment pouches and a few SAW pouches and can fit an incredible amount of stuff. The load lifters are fantastic at making the load feel a lot lighter than other packs I've tried.

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Re: Fake vs surplus

Post by ghost792 » Sat Apr 27, 2013 12:10 am

livinitup wrote:I'd be more concerned with the quality of the pack rather than who makes it. Not everything imported is crap and they tend to be cheaper. Might also be a good idea to look at what you're using it for. If its a BOB thats going to sit in a closet until a bug-out situation, im more likely to buy something cheaper rather than spending more on something that you would use more say for regular hiking or edc.
In my experience, the knock-off gear tends to use less durable materials and construction than the real thing. I was at the local surplus place the other day, and I compared a brand new USGI field jacket liner with a brand new import example. The issue liner was noticeably thicker while the fabric of the knock off just didn't feel right. I looked at some of their other import items with similar results.

Your experience may be different, but I'm willing to pay a little more to get the "real deal" because I know that it will likely last longer.

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Re: Fake vs surplus

Post by roedy » Sat Jul 05, 2014 11:54 pm

Dear Doctorr Fabulous,
Nice to see you.
I have a Olive Green M65 field jacket but it looks unusual (I am sorry it seemed that I can not posting pictures here). This jacket has no epaulettes but it has silver zipper (CONVAR). It has three labels:
1. Written as: SMALL SHORT
Chest: from 33 to 37 inches
Height: up to 67 inches
Stock No.: 8405-782-2935

2. Written as: COAT MAN’S FIELD
WITH HOOD, NYLON
COTTON SATEEN OG-107
DSA 100-1928

3. Usage and washing instructions.

I need your help to know anything about my jacket, why it is not like the common M65 field jackets.
Thank you.

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Re: Fake vs surplus

Post by Stercutus » Sun Jul 06, 2014 12:47 pm

A huge number of USGI packs were made by Light House for the Blind. If you can find that label on there it is very likely authentic.
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Re: Fake vs surplus

Post by roedy » Tue Jul 08, 2014 11:33 am

Thank you, stertucus. I couldn't find that label you're talking about. I just can say that it is looked old, in its metal buttons there written "KAUV C.O. PROV R.I."

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Re: Fake vs surplus

Post by woodsghost » Tue Jul 08, 2014 5:57 pm

If it says "made in Korea" it is probably not GI issue. And the stuff I have that was made in Korea broke down quickly compared to the stuff I have that was made in the US.

Also, there is something funny about the webbing. The American stuff seems to be more abrasive and tougher, while the Korean stuff I have is slicker, smoother, and a bit thinner. It does not stay in place as well with the buckles.
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Re: Fake vs surplus

Post by TacAir » Tue Jul 08, 2014 11:53 pm

roedy wrote:Dear Doctorr Fabulous,
Nice to see you.
I have a Olive Green M65 field jacket but it looks unusual (I am sorry it seemed that I can not posting pictures here). This jacket has no epaulettes but it has silver zipper (CONVAR). It has three labels:
1. Written as: SMALL SHORT
Chest: from 33 to 37 inches
Height: up to 67 inches
Stock No.: 8405-782-2935

2. Written as: COAT MAN’S FIELD
WITH HOOD, NYLON
COTTON SATEEN OG-107
DSA 100-1928

3. Usage and washing instructions.

I need your help to know anything about my jacket, why it is not like the common M65 field jackets.
Thank you.
This link
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Rare-First-Year ... 1196053871
would indicate your jacket was made in 1965, a first year issue item and seems to be rare or collectors item.

Did you buy the jacket from an outfit in Texas?.
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Re: Fake vs surplus

Post by Evan the Diplomat » Wed Jul 09, 2014 10:17 pm

roedy wrote:Thank you, stertucus. I couldn't find that label you're talking about. I just can say that it is looked old, in its metal buttons there written "KAUV C.O. PROV R.I."
Back in the day Providence Rhode Island and a lot of garments and associated materials like buttons, snaps and zippers.
There is a KAVU Enterprises registered in Cumberland RI.
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Re: Fake vs surplus

Post by roedy » Thu Jul 10, 2014 5:06 am

No, I bought in at the used garment market in my hometown in Indonesia which sold used garment from abroad (used and imported). Sometimes if we could find some woodland M65 field jackets, woodland camo pants etc.

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