Arc’teryx LEAF Combat Pants Hack

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Long ago I purchased a used pair of Arc’teryx LEAF Combat Pants from a gentleman off One of these days I need to do a review of the LEAF Combat Pants but for the sake of this post, if you like somewhat loose-fitting cargo pants, they are best I have ever seen. ITS Tactical did a great review years ago that’s worth your time that you can check out HERE.

Anyways, the pair I picked up, the previous owner (orpheus762x51) had replaced the YKK zipper pulls with a cordage/heat shrink lanyard that I thought was a bit odd but figured I would try them out. They have proven to beyond useful and durable through hundreds of washings, while thoroughly beating the crap out of the pants. This pair just went back to the mothership as the stitching was starting to fail. In true Arc’teryx fashion, they were back to me in a month or two with brand new stitching.

For a while afterward, I had done the same hack on some of my other pairs of pants I own. The only problem is a I could never get the right cordage. I purchased at least 10 different types of small cordage to no avail. I loved the hack so much I went back to the original owner to ask what kind of cordage he used. It had been 4 years since he passed those pants on, but I figured I give it a shot. Orpheus got back to me quickly and said he used Salomon’s Quicklace Kit and some heat shrink tubing from Napa Auto Parts. Never in a million years would have thought of the Salomon’s Quicklace.

After just doing another two pairs of Combat Pants, without a doubt, the Salomon’s Quicklace is the way to go. One package, which is two laces got me through two pairs of pants with extra for screw ups. If you want to make your life easy, here are links to what I used for this hack:

Here is the basic gist – Cut the Quicklace into 6 to 7 inch sections. You need 5 sections for Combat Pants (two front zippered pockets, two back pockets, and the fly). Next cut the 3/16″ tubing into 1.5″ sections (you can go longer or shorter if you want). Next cut off all the YKK zipper pulls from the front zippered pockets and two back pockets (DO NOT CUT THE ZIPPER PULL OFF THE FLY ZIPPER) with wire cutters. Next thread the Quicklace through the hole, where the zipper pull was, add tubing, tie off the Quicklace with an overhand loop knot, shrink the heat tubing with a lighter, cut the ends and melt them into the knot with a lighter.

Here is a more detailed step by step with pictures:

First is to cut up your Quicklace & 3/16″ tubing.

Next cut off the zipper pulls on your zippers. I have found it easier to cut both sides vs forcing it open with just one cut.

Now thread the Quicklace through the hole

Slide on the section of tubing

Tie off the Quicklace with a overhand loop knot (if you don’t know this knot you can learn it HERE). You want to work the knot a little to get it even. You also want to leave a little space at the bottom where the tubing meats the zipper so it can move around freely.

Once you have the knot in place you want to heat up the shrink tubing. You can do this a number of different ways – heat gun, lighter, small torch. My recommendation is to use a lighter. Everything in this exercise is flammable or can melt very easily including the pants.  A lighter can be easily used by holding the ends of the Quicklace and running the lighter over the tubing. Here is a video on how to do this (I know, I know, but I guarantee someone doesn’t know how to do this):

This is what you should have after heating the tubing (it’s possible that the lighter will have left soot on the tubing. After letting the tubing cool wipe off with a rag):

Next step is to cut off the excess Quicklace and melt it back into the knot like you would with paracord knot.


On to the zipper:

This one is actually a little harder than the other four as you have to thread the Quicklace through small holes on the zipper pull. Holding the fly zipper pull thread both ends of the Quicklace though the top hole.

Next thread it down into the hole below.

Now thread the two ends through the loop at the end and tighten down.

Next add tubing, tie off the knot (same as above) and heat the tubing.

End result:

I know this seems like a weird hack but I can’t tell you how useful it is. Especially the one on the fly. Its makes it so much easier to zip and unzip. Specifically on the LEAF Combat Pants the top front zippered pockets, the zipper is kind of hidden and it can take a moment to find the zipper and open the pocket. These lanyards make the job of opening and closing the pockets a piece of cake. This hack also works awesome with zipper pulls on backpacks and range bags.

If you attempt this and you mess up your pants I am in no way liable because your an idiot and you can’t follow simple directions. Feel free to drop questions in the comments if you dont understand something.


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Never forget

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Picture courtesy of idovermani

We must never forget

I remember

I remember that Chicago filled all the trains and sent them away from the city.
I remember thinking Chicago was next.
I remember trying all day to get in touch with my brother in DC and the phones were down there.
I remember calling my other brother to wish him a happy birthday, and thinking they took that away from him. His birthday will never be the same.
I remember talking to my sister in law in VA and her saying she felt the plane hit the Pentagon.
I remember I couldn’t sleep and I stayed up all night watching Jennings’s trying to get the next bit of information.
I remember thinking that Peter Jennings who had seen and reported every significant story for the last 40 years was suddenly at a loss for words.
I remember thinking this was the start of bad things.

We must never forget


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Weighing Sources

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This video from Primary & Secondary is spot on! You need to gather your data from different sources – different data points as I like to say and then make a conclusion. Even when you do that perfectly, you still might not like the outcome.

There is so much bad information now. I am in a few groups in facebook and the info there is so bad. At least on a forum you build up a reputation and watch people that have a reputation. Most of the time you know when people are full of shit. Seems like lately you have to start your research thinking this author / video creator is full of shit.

Its on you to find good sources of info if you care. If you dont care I doubt you are reading this. We care that are info is good and that we test it to the best of our ability. We care if people are full of shit and are misleading others but I will no longer fight for them. Its on them to figure it out. To ask questions and be a critical thinker.  If not, I am not going to take the time and fight for the correction. Its not worth the BS.

I would add that fleeting survival doesn’t give a shit about clicks. We have killed off all advertising other than easy amazon ads that they manage. We are well off enough that we can pay for hosting and software fees to run the site without other masters.  If you don’t like it, we could care less. We have a number of readers that find value so we keep the site up. When we get time we try to post as much as possible. Lately we have been spending a lot more time at charitable organizations and in all honesty that sucks time from other things. FS gets hit first.

Hope you all have a great weekend!

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300 Blackout – What are you good for?

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The 300 AAC Blackout. The new tactical flavor of the month the old timers would say and for the most part they may be right. But these are also the guys that said red dots on rifles were a waste of time and now say that about red dots on handguns.

300 Blackout is an interesting animal. For what it was designed to do it excels. For those trying to make it the new do all cartridge, they generally don’t know anything about ballistics or barrel lengths.

Let’s start with what it was designed to do. The cartridge was developed by Advanced Armament Corporation (AAC) for use in the M4 carbine. The purpose was to achieve ballistics similar to the 7.62×39mm AK cartridge in an AR-15 while using standard AR-15 magazines at their normal capacity. Specifically:

  • Create a reliable compact 30-cal solution’s for AR platform
  • Utilize existent inventory magazines while retaining their full capacity
  • Create the optimal platform for sound and flash suppressed fire
  • Create compatible full power ammunition that matches 7.62×39 ballistics
  • Work with subsonic and full power ammunition without requiring adjustable gas.
  • Provide the ability to penetrate barriers with high-mass projectiles
  • Provide all capabilities in a lightweight, durable, low recoiling package

If interested I highly recommend taking a look at the original AAC PowerPoint that AAC did –

Under 16 inches the platform uses a pistol length gas system. That, along with its lower pressures, make it an ideal platform for short barrel rifles.

What AAC ended up with was a very quiet round (as quiet as a HK MP5-SD) when using subsonic ammo and a suppressor that could also switch to a very powerful 30 caliber supersonic round with only the change of a magazine. As mentioned above, the round excels in short barreled applications. The platform uses all the existing pieces of the M4 weapons system (Bolt, BCG, Magazines, lower, upper, handguards) with the only change being the barrel. Continue reading

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Home Defence Advice

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This is a bit of an older video but I was reminded of it when listening to an interview of Aaron Cowan of Sage Dynamics on the Civilian Carry Radio podcast which I would also recommend. Aaron has an amazing analytical brain about these topics and generally picks up ideas or details that are often missed.

In this video Aaron drops some good advice on home defence scenarios and when and where you may be when they occur. I think most of us have a basic idea about what we would do in a home defence situation and some of us are farther along in that evolution. This video brings up some scenarios that you may have missed and I think it’s well worth your time. I know it was for me.

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The Pocket Light Challenge

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I have been on a quest for the perfect pocket light for a while. I will start this off by saying I have a full time job and my dress requirements do not allow for a full size light. If yours does – rock and roll, more power to you. For those of us that don’t wear cargos all day long or have the ability to wear utility belts, the answer to this conundrum is a pocket light.

My general EDC, be it with a suit or khakis and a polo, is – a pistol (size dependent on dress), a pocket knife (size dependent on dress), wallet, phone, and a pocket light. The pocket light is one of those things like a pocket knife that once you have it in your pocket, it turns into an invaluable tool that you have a tendency to use three or four times a day.

If you ever take a GLOCK armors class, GLOCK has a number of accessories you can purchase when you’re at the class. One of those is a Streamlight Microstream Flashlight (I think they are like $10). At the time, I would just put a full size flashlights in my bag and pull it out if I needed a flashlight. I picked up a couple these lights at the armors course as gifts and decided to keep one for myself. It went into my pocket on day one and has lived there happily for several years.

The Microstream is a nifty little light that has a pocket clip that can also be used to clip on the front of your hat to be used as an improvised headlamp. The light is about 3 ½ inches long and weighs almost nothing of 1 ounce. It’s an LED light that has 43 lumens and has a runtime of about two hours. This was my goto light for years and I think I’m on my seventh or eighth one being they are so small they like to get lost. Every time I go back to renew my GLOCK armors cert I always taken the opportunity to pick up 4 or 5.

While perusing Modern Service Weapons blog, I came along a post by Tim Lau about how he was looking for another alternative to the Microstream. One of the lights he found was Pelican Flashlights 1910B which is about a quarter inch longer than the Microstream and weighs in a 1.5 ounces. But the main selling point is its 70 lumens vs the 43 of the Microstream.

His post got me thinking and I decided to pick one up as they are crazy cheap and while I was on Amazon I looked at what the other options were. The only one I could find at the time that in my mind was reputable was from Surefire. In true Surefire fashion the Surefire Titan is double the cost of the Pelican; that being said it is smaller and has a 115 lumens. Lumens are good especially in such a small light.

After living with these lights for about a year here are my thoughts: Continue reading

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