Med kits are a hard product to review. I can’t very well cut myself up and see how well Celox works. I mean I guess I could, but I’m ugly enough as is and that’s not going to help the cause. What I can say is the components in this kit are all the name brand products used by countless departments from local law enforcement to high-speed operator types in the nastiest of places. The components have been tried and tested by people far more capable than myself. Moreover, we have many vets who made it back home thanks to the use of tourniquets and hemostatic agents.
Blue Force Gear is well documented as an American manufacturer of hard-hitting goodness. So it is no surprise the pouch holds up to repeated yanks on the pull tab, EDC on LEO chest rigs, as well as the in and out of my car while testing this kit over the last 3 weeks.
I have been running the kit on my belt horizontally at the 5 or 6 o’clock position depending on my pants. In some rare cases, I have stuffed it in a cargo pocket. The Eleven 10 rigid TQ holster has been running next to my spare mags at 9 o’clock. While it is significantly thinner and lower profile than any of my other kits, I would not say it conceals while wearing a t-shit. With a sweater, coat or even thick long sleeve shirt it should hide nicely. If you require 100% OPSEC in summer then the pocket kits they offer may be a better fit for you.
It has been installed on a plate carrier as well to test if it is truly thin enough not to interfere with magazine or sidearm access. I am not comfortable making a recommendation either way on this as I haven’t spent enough time in plate carrier to be as proficient in draw stroke as I would like. That said I know a few SRT members who use them without issue and would attest to the fact these are the lightest and best blowout kits they have run.
With it being banged around, in and out of my car for the last 3 weeks as well as nightly testing it by pulling the tabs and opening and closing it I will have opened it and closed it more than expected in a lifetime. There is no noticeable sign of wear, and the elastic has broken in but not stretched out. Since they advertise the packs is made by BFG, this is not surprising in the least bit.
Some people fail to prepare, and others prepare to fail, very few are actually prepared for success. If you want to be the latter, planning should include an IFAK/EPIK/Blowout Kit. If your prepared to pay a bit more to get the most compact option on the market, then the mini blowout kit and rigid tourniquet are going to be your best bet at $329.00. If you don’t have the budget for that or want an even lower profile minimalistic kit, you can grab a pocket kit for only $63-$78.
Another option is you can buy a refill for $129 and put it in any manufacturers med pouch. It won’t offer you the sleek factor that CLEER does, but it will offer you the security of having the right tools for the job. The important thing is you carry a kit, and you put the right products in it.
One of the things that impressed me with Matt was he wanted to see my kit and help me evaluate it without trying to sell me his kits. It was great to get his feedback on why he picked certain items or how he would lay my kit out differently. At the end of the day, I genuinely believe Matt rather you have a kit on you, and know how to use it, more than making a sale. Which is why they sell components separately in addition to the kits.
In short a kit is a must have, but so is training. That said I am wondering what kind of cool new things we will see out of CLEER Medical in the future.