I’ve wanted a set of PLCE webbing for years now and have always balked at paying huge sums to get one from the overseas. This set of webbing is a great deal, since just a single PLCE utility pouch from Amazon costs $40 itself. For anyone who has ever wanted to own an interesting piece of British military history, this is a great find. However, the set I got wasn’t exactly what was advertised. First off, one of the dual mag pouches is Web-Tex brand, not surplus (and has a busted buckle). Not a huge deal, since it wasn’t faded like the surplus mag pouches were.The Web-Tex brand pouches also had side-release buckles, which I prefer to the Spanish buckles that Brits traditionally use in their gear.
An interesting note, though Keepshooting says each pouch (of the two dual pouches) can hold 2 AR-15 magazines, they can actually hold 3, which gives you a massive 12-magazine capacity on your belt.
The bayonet frog was not included in my set. In its place was a machete sheath. For me, this is great. For a couple of years, I’ve wanted a British short machete sheath to try to fit my khukuri into. But again, that wasn’t what was in the description.
While you can attach a PLCE Respirator bag (they call a gas mask a “respirator”), it gets a bit bulky. If you attach it to the rear, you have this big bag constantly flopping against your butt. It’s distracting. I ended up using it as a small medical grab bag.
Let’s talk about what sets the PLCE apart from the more familiar ALICE system.
The method of attachment is definitely more complicated than the ALICE system. To attach two Small Arms pouches (holding 3 M4 magazines each) to an ALICE belt, you simply use four small clips. To attach a PLCE dual ammunition pouch holding 6 magazines total, you use 2 plastic clips, 2 sewn-in-place straps and 2 straps that fasten with velcro and snap closure.
However, the PLCE system is more comfortable. ALICE clips can dig into my waist, especially if I am bent over or sitting with my knees drawn up to my chest. And the six-point attachment system of the PLCE leads to a much more balanced and stable platform. Between the two, I greatly prefer the PLCE.
-By Allen Cosby