Monday, March 12, 2012

Review: Black Hawk kneepads

Here's some PPE that I wanted to share with you, but had all but forgotten, as it was sitting buried in my gear-bag.  I have had a variety of knee-pads over the years, for rollerblading, Fantasy LRP events and costuming. One thing I've always had issues with is the fit, and having my pads slipping around to the side. I'm going to blame my boney knees and skinny calves for that. Whilst the pads I've used in past have never  spectacularly failed me (especially in some bigish rollerblading crashes) they've rarely been comfortable, and and have either pinched and rubbed or slipped and slid. One thing that occurred to me that perhaps I was using the wrong equipment for the task I was performing. Running about the bush and up and down hills isn't the same as roller-hockey or speed skating. So I looked to tactical gear. Blackhawk! had these Advanced Tactical Knee Pads v2.0 to offer, and I wanted to tell you what I have found with them.
The body is made from sturdy 600D Cordura, which encloses the closed cell foam interior padding. Closed cell foam doesn't absorb sweat or incidental water, for both comfort and keeping the weight of the pads down. The kop of the knee pad is injection molded plastic, which is articulated below the kneecap, with a soft rubber join. This design allows the knee to be bent, without producing much in the way of either pinching of the padding, or gaps opening up in the pad. I was really impressed with this feature, and have found no troubles with the coverage it's offered me. The strapping also deserves some discussion too. As well as the sturdy plastic furniture on the "outside" edge, and the wide elastic strapping which is fitted with long and well placed strips of hook-and-loop, the straps are affixed to the body of the pad, featuring seamed and padded flaps that wrap the padding and strapping around the wearers knee. 
Both the top and bottom straps are well placed and give a good solid attachment, without interfering with mobility overly. A very useful and well thought out additional element of this pad is that inside the kneepad there is a contoured interior ledge of the same closed cell-foam. This sits above the wearers knee-cap, and keeps the pad seated in the right position no matter what I've thrown at it, thus far.  Blackhawk!  offer this in Black, Coyote Tan, Foliage Green, and Olive Drab. I opted for Coyote in this case, and its worked out nicely for me thus far.  I've been happy with the protection these have offered me both whilst out adventuring and my Stargate Lasertag LRP, but also out rollerblading. Rugged, functional and adjustable. A good choice.

1 comment:

  1. I have these exact pads for work, I bought then a while ago and they have outlasted many a set others own from Bunnings. Another case of you get what you pay for.


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