FOG HORN

HSGI’s “Double Decker” TACO – it’s the magazine pouch to die for.
By: Sal Palma

2012
Twobirds Flying Publication

High Speed Gear, Inc. or HSGI is located in Swansboro, North Carolina. The company defines itself, quite modestly, as a small company committed to deliver the best gear available to its customers. Their products are collaborative efforts with their customers; made from the highest quality material and employing the best manufacturing processes. From this man’s viewpoint you can take their selfassessment to the bank. In my work as a writer, I use a number of weapon systems. Until now, my challenge has been finding a way to carry the variety of magazines required - 5.56, 7.62, 7.62x39, G3, etc. Each has unique dimensional constraints obvious enough to require a “dedicated” magazine pouch - candidly, a huge pain in the neck.

The problem does not end with finding a common arrangement for stowing magazines - that’s just one part of a three variable equation that includes accessibility and retention. My search for that illusive “universal” magazine pouch was not unlike the search for the Holy Grail. It seemed, or so I thought, finding a solution that could accommodate a variety of magazine types, securely hold them in place and provide the accessibility needed for combat use was unattainable. That’s when I ran across High Speed Gear’s “Double Decker” TACO. Why did I not know about this sooner? Well, nobody gives a rat’s ass; what counts is that all of my concerns were now addressed. HSGI’s pouch is amazingly simple, so simple in fact as to constitute an expression of genius. Grey’s Anatomy of the TACO entails a polymer U-shaped insert sandwiched between panels of 1000 Denier Cordura; held together by military grade shock cord. For added security, HSGI included two loop panels inside the pouch, the strategy being to provide the user with an efficient way to lock down the magazine. Simply add hook

Copyright 2012, Towbirds Flying Publication. All Rights Reserved.

HSGI’s “Double Decker” TACO – it’s the magazine pouch to die for.

2012

panels to the magazine body, which when inserted into the pouch will lock with the loop to securely hold the magazine in place. Bling! Bling! The Double Decker TACO involves a pistol magazine TACO stacked on a rifle magazine TACO.

Slide 3. Pistol TACO can be used for lights and tools

Slide 1. AUG, G3 and pistol magazines

Slide 2. M14 and AK47 Magazines

The pouch attaches to PAL webbing using any number of devices – MALICE or SPEED Clips to name just two. Consistent with Fred R. Bernard’s “A picture is worth a thousand words,” I’ve adequately demonstrated the universality of HSGI’s magazine pouch, so with stowage concerns out of the way I’d like to talk, a little, about retention and accessibility. In assessing retention, I gave the magazine pouch a real going over. About the only thing that I did not do is jump out of an airplane, so I’m very comfortable with the pouch from that respect. Tensioning of the pouch is carried out by synching up the shock cord. In the event the shock cord becomes frayed or damaged, the user can easily replace it. As mentioned earlier, HSGI included two loop panels inside the pouch. So, if you’re jumping and desire the added security, you may want to apply adhesive backed hook panels to your

Copyright 2012, Twobirds Flying Publication, All Rights Reserved

HSGI’s “Double Decker” TACO – it’s the magazine pouch to die for.

2012

magazine body, which will lock your magazine tightly into the pouch. However, I suggest experimenting with the approach, because you may find that you’re unable to get the magazine out when you need it. I personally did not see a need for it, but your mileage may vary. The undisputed king of accessibility is ITW’s FastMag®. They enjoy a well-deserved and very solid reputation in the industry and among tactical professionals, but it does have its Achilles heel. The ITW FastMag® uses a very simple mechanical hinge that holds two polymer halves together along the bottom edge. On the body, ITW uses a rubber tensioning band, which is the principal tensioning mechanism along the body of the magazine. Should the tensioning band fail, the operator is left with just the tension provided by the hinged halves. In most situations this is enough to keep the magazine in place, but in aggressive kinetic action it may be problematic. Furthermore, in environments where there is a high probability of sand and mud, the FastMag® could become fowled. My later is highly subjective and should be taken as an untested observation. Neither of these issues are a concern with the HSGI pouch. In my testing, there was no observable difference in either time or effort when using the TACO or FastMag, they were both equally fast and easy to access.

Removing and installing magazines was comparable with no impediments, even before a rising learning curve on the TACO. I was able to execute an emergency magazine change quickly and efficiently with no obstructions. Moreover, the spacing between the pistol TACO and the rifle TACO was such that my hand was not obstructed when removing or replacing a rifle magazine.

To say that I was solidly impressed by HSGI’s magazine pouch is a gross understatement. In fact, were I in a position to set standards for an organization, HSGI’s TACO would occupy the top spot on a short list. The “universality” of the design makes it a cost effective alternative to an assortment of magazine pouches. The mechanical ease of operation and reliability makes it the operator’s choice. HSGI’s Double Decker TACO is a superb concept and product and I highly recommend it. The only thing you’ll need to worry about is what color or pattern to choose from!

-SP
HSGI Products are available through Brownell’s Policestore.com or through HSGI’s Web Site.
Copyright 2012, Twobirds Flying Publication, All Rights Reserved