TT IFAK VL L Product Review
The TT IFAK VL L is truly the next generation of IFAK pouches that is able to be deployed up to 8 seconds faster than conventional IFAKs.
Since the Global War on Terror began, pouches used by military personnel to carry Individual First Aid Kits, have come a long way. For instance, when I joined the British army over 17-years-ago, our IFAK’s were far removed from what they are today. In fact, we were only typically issued an Asherman Chest Seal, First Field Dressing (FFD), and if we wanted a minor boo boo kit, we had to purchase that ourselves. How we also carried our ‘IFAK’s’ would also vary from unit to unit and our specific role within that unit. If you were just a rifleman in an infantry section, our FFD was typically attached to your webbing (belt kit), the chest seal was in a designated pocket, and the boo boo kit was contained within a pouch on our webbing. However, as time went on and our ‘medical’ experience increased, we would build a more personalized medic kit. Typically, at this stage we would use a water bottle/utility pouch to carry the ‘trauma kit’, and we would mark the lid of the pouch with a black cross so others would know it contained medical supplies.
But, when British and American forces became entrenched in bitter and bloody battles in Iraq and Afghanistan, it was noted that we needed a more specific trauma kit and pouch. The kits issued to both armies were second to none, but the pouches did leave a lot to be desired. Like many other soldiers, I found that usually the pouches protruded a little too much, which on occasion would cause an obstruction of movement. Also, the plastic push clips could be troublesome to open when our adrenaline was pumping, or we had to treat a casualty in the middle of a firefight. Yet, there never seemed to be a better alternative. Even pouches with zippers were found to be an issue for many, as again, trying to open the zips in certain situations proved to be an issue. However, this is where the Tasmanian Tiger TT IFAK VL L fills the needs and wants of soldiers on the battlefield and civilians alike. Not only is the TT IFAK VL L simplistic in design, it can also be deployed more rapidly than conventional IFAK’s, and it increases the range of motion of anyone wearing it.
The Three S's - Speed, Simplicity, and Storage
Speed – One of the key points that I wanted to establish about the TT IFAK VL L, was to determine how quickly the TT IFAK VL L could be deployed when compared to a conventional IFAK pouch. With this, I conducted several experiments in deploying a TT IFAK VL L and conventional IFAK pouch, from various positions and attached to different items of kit and equipment. The test ranged from deploying both the TT IFAK VL L and conventional IFAK from the standing position while on a plate carrier, to deploying the TT IFAK VL L pouch and conventional IFAK in the kneeling position without either of them being attached to anything. What quickly began to emerge, was that every time I conducted the test, I found that no matter what – the TT IFAK VL L insert was able to be deployed up to 8 seconds faster than a conventional IFAK. No matter what type of deployment method I used, the TT IFAK VL L would continually beat the conventional IFAK. I even went as far as to get a group of first responders, law enforcement officers, active military personnel, and a trauma teams to test out the TT IFAK VL L. The outcome of their tests, were the same as mine.
Simplicity – You know, I studied this pouch for hours on end and I was amazed at how simple the pouch really was. What I mean by that is, it is one insert that fits into a main carry pouch, which really makes it a simple design. There is no straps or clips to fiddle with, and the main insert slid out the pouch every time, with ease. I was really amazed why no one had ever thought of designing a pouch like this before, because it really was a simple design. There was nothing complex about it, it was an inset which folded in half that was sealed with a lid, and a main robust and durable pouch that attached to anything you wanted it to. I was also impressed at how easy the pouch attached to a plate carrier, by a Velcro pad, so you do not have to use the MOLLE attachment system if you do not want to. The level of design and engineering which must have gone into the TT IFAK VL L, must have been immense – yet it looks so simple that it appears to be an effortless design.
Storage – When I first received my sample TT IFAK VL L pouch, I was concerned that it would not be big enough to store all the items I would require to treat a casualty. But I will admit that I was very wrong. Not only was I able to store my usual trauma kit in the pouch, I had room to store a little more then I normally would. Another aspect I liked about the insert of the TT IFAK VL L, was the fact that I not only had two sides of elasticated straps, I also had two large storage pockets behind them. In addition, my casualty care card even had its own place, at the front of the pouch. On top of this, the outside of the main TT IFAK VL L pouch, there are two rows of elasticated MOLLE panels, that allows me to attach an extra tourniquet or two, and a set of trauma sheers. It was evident that whoever designed this pouch took great care to make sure that you were able to carry a lot of medical equipment, for a wide range of first aid and server trauma situations.
Slimline and Robust
Another set of features which really impressed me with the pouch was the fact that it was very durable, and when attached to kit or it was carried around, it was very low profile. As I said in the introduction, I had encountered situations, where I found certain IFAK pouches were very bulky. But, the TT IFAK VL L carried the same number of items as I had carried countless times, but it had a lower profile. This made it easier to perform a wide range of tasks while wearing it, and at no point was I obstructed. In fact, I would go as far to say that while wearing the TT IFAK VL L on a plate carrier, my range of motion increased. I also liked that I could wear it attached to my belt on the back of my waist, and I was able to comfortably sit in a vehicle and drive. The TT IFAK VL L pouch is also extremely robust, due to the fact that it is made from Cordura 700 den material, and the stitching also holds up extremely well when the pouch is filled to its maximum capacity.
The Final Word
Overall, the TT IFAK VL L pouch is by far one of the best IFAK pouches I have ever used. From the rapid deployment of the insert, to the storage capacity, the TT IFAK VL L surpassed my every expectation. I was also impressed with the reviews I got of the pouch from certified and active professionals, who use a wide range of IFAK’s/med kits on a daily basis. In fact, when I come to get the sample pouch back, it would usually take me a few days to secure the item, due to how much each person/grouped liked the TT IFAK VL L. That is seriously how awesome the TT IFAK VL L pouch really is. And the price of the pouch is also very competitive, when you compare it to pouches of similar design and build quality.
To watch the YouTube product review, click here.