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View Full Version : My DIY MOLLE Earmuff Holders


pratchett
07-26-2012, 1:14 PM
I don't like what I've been doing to hold onto my hearing protection while I'm at the range, or training. Most guys wrap them around their knee, or the back of the neck, or around the top of their head above their ears. Maybe it's the way I'm built, but none of that is comfortable for me. Either they slide around, make me sweat, or restrict my movement. I looked around for something that I could use to clip my ear pro to, but nothing fit the bill.

Safariland has a belt mounted hearing protector holder (http://www.opticsplanet.com/safariland-hearing-protector-holder-blk.html) (Model 0752), but it will not hold earmuffs with more than a 1.5" wide strap. Even if it were wide enough to accomodate what I'd consider standard sizes, the belt loop is molded at 2 1/4 inches. Howard Leight's holder (http://www.abcsafetyglasses.com/mly-lm15.html) has the same problems. Someone is selling a velcro strap model (http://www.amazon.com/Ear-Muff-Belt-Strap-Holder/dp/B002YOAGFY), but there's no way it will hold the most popular ("wide") style of earmuff and accomodate a belt that's wider than a slimline fashion style belt.

Oh, and MOLLE capable? Forget about it.

So, I set about making my own. I wanted something that took a quick second to don and doff, that could be operated one-handed, and that was designed from the ground up for MOLLE gear. I sketched out what I wanted, and made something I liked.

I went to Strapworks.com (http://www.strapworks.com), and ordered Mil-Spec 17337 1" Nylon Webbing (http://www.strapworks.com/Flat_Nylon_Webbing_p/mfnw1.htm). They have black, coyote, desert tan, foliage green, navy blue, and olive drab in the mil-spec line; I chose coyote to match my existing gear. I ordered 2 feet, and then another foot of 1" Velcro hook & loop (http://www.strapworks.com/Hook_Loop_including_VELCRO_and_other_brands_p/v.htm). After playing around and making sure I had everything right, I took my nylon strap and Velcro to a stitch shop here in town. They're family friends for over 20 years, so for a job this small they just did it for free! A couple of hours later, and I had my little contraption back.

http://img840.imageshack.us/img840/9625/dsc02606r.jpg

http://img256.imageshack.us/img256/6619/dsc02612nh.jpg

As you can see from the pictures, it's a deceptively simple concept. It's a big version of a Velcro strap keeper, but I incorporated two original ideas that I find particularly useful. First, there's a 1" x 1" section where the Velcro does not touch. This is a pull-tab I designed so I'm not fumbling around with my fingernails trying to separate two pieces of Velcro.
http://img687.imageshack.us/img687/5272/dsc02615f.jpg
Second, I put a 3" x 1" long piece of Velcro on the outside, so that I can put patches on it facing outward. Who doesn't like patches, right?

Milspec Monkey http://milspecmonkey.com/store/patches has over a dozen patches that are 1" wide by 3" or less long. They are:

UTILITARIAN: Blood Type, 1" Medic Square, Latex Allergy, Morphine Allergy, NKDA, Penicillin Alergy, Sulfa Allergy, U.S. Mini Flag, Instructor

MORALE: Fun meter, HMFIC, Just Sayin', Stupid Allergy, Suck Meter, Winning

I was initially worried putting it on my war belt might cause it to swing around and rack me in the balls, but at the position I wanted it in my boys were safe. There's no reason I couldn't attach it to my chest rig, too (I have a 2-Piece MAV). The whole earmuff holder I made - even WITH the earmuffs in - is surprisingly slim.

Thanks for letting me share!
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Romans 13:4