How We Measure Gear
Not everyone will measure the same way. Sometimes companies use Height by Length by Width. Some use Depth. Others aren’t clear about which dimension is which. All of this confusion before we even consider the conversions between different units of measurement.
To clear all this up, we’ve set up a standard on how we measure kit. When we get a chance to look at an item first hand, we do two things: we do a 360° photo shoot and we verify all the measurements. When you see the 360 stamp on a product, you know the measurements are accurate and in line with our standards. We made a whole category of equipment so you can quickly find gear with 360° images and verified measurements.
If you don’t see the stamp, it doesn’t mean the measurements are wrong! It just means we can’t be sure the measurements were done the same way.
Our measurements are metric. That means that length, width, and depth are measured in centimeters. We fill the pouch with the gear you’d expect to be inside of it and measure it, rounding up to the nearest whole centimeter.
We do this to give you a real understanding of how much space the item will take up on your kit. The compressed size of a magazine or IFAK pouch doesn’t really tell you how far that piece is going to stand out from your plate carrier or how low it will hang on your belt.
The measurement won’t always be exactly the same size as your pouch after you fill it with your gear, but it should be close.
Determining Height, Width, and Depth
We look at the pouch from the front – the way you’d see it if it was mounted on someone else. The height is the distance from the bottom to the top of the pouch, vertically. Width is the distance from left to right, horizontally. Depth is measured as the distance from where the pouch attaches to the user, out to the front of the pouch facing the observer, horizontally.
As we said before, we round up to the nearest centimeter (about 0.4 inches). This means that thinnest something can be in the database is 1cm.
If you see a zero, it means that the manufacturer hasn’t provided a number. You shouldn’t see any zeros on 360° items.
Length of Slings and Belts
Slings still have a Width and a Depth number, but their length is placed in the height attribute. We measure slings at their fully extended length so that you could simulate it at home to see if it would be big enough for your uses.
Belts also have a width and depth number, but since they are often sized for the individual or made to custom order, it is difficult to provide an accurate number. When possible, we’ll provide the maximum length available from the manufacturer, but if sizing is critical to you, contact them directly at their website.
Weights are also done in metric, so you’ll find these listed in grams. In this case, we weigh the pouch in an empty state.
We know you’re likely already counting the grams and ounces of the stuff inside your pouches, and we’ll never know exactly what you’ll be putting inside them. This lets you accurately add the equipment weight to the contents weight to understand exactly how much mass you’ll be carrying.
How We Measure the PALS Grid
Pouch Attachment – Ladder System (or PALS) are the series of straps used to attach most modern pouches to various carriage systems. We indicate this with a number such as ‘2 x 5’.
To understand how we choose this number, we look at the back of the pouch and determine:
a) how many PALS columns will this pouch occupy?
b) how many vertical straps AND spaces will this pouch occupy?
As an example, a 2 x 5 PALS webbing number indicates that you’ll need two vertical columns, and five horizontal spaces. Those five horizontal spaces likely means two horizontal webbing straps and three gaps between the top of the PALS tab and where it secures at the bottom of the pouch.
What About Items Not Marked with 360?
If you see an item without the 360° indicator, it means we haven’t had a chance to look at that item in person and conduct measurements. If the manufacturer has posted the dimensions and weights on their website, we use these. Where necessary, we convert imperial to metric. If no data has been provided, we enter the number zero.
For PALS, we only provide a value if we can see an image of the back of the pouch. If we can’t see it, we enter the number zero. If there’s no PALS webbing, such a pouch that attaches with hook and loop, we use the word ‘none’.
It’s important to know that if an item hasn’t been checked by us, it doesn’t mean it’s data is wrong – this information has always been pulled from the manufacturers website whenever possible. What it does mean is that we can’t verify it ourselves, so we can’t be 100% sure.