With chest rigs, you don’t get to take things off your chest, but rather the opposite of it. A chest rig is a tactical gear that allows you to store all important equipment to your chest literally and retrieve them easily when the need arises. It is an essential part of the tactical wardrobe, and you should have it on the field, especially when shooting.
It takes hours or days to dig through the thousands of options to find the right rig. Chances are, you might not even find what you’re looking for. That is why we went out of our way to research and compile for you the top best chest rigs. There is also a buying guide on how to choose the right rig for you.
How to Choose the Best Chest Rigs
Before purchasing a chest rig, there are several factors that you must put into consideration for a perfect product:
Chest Rigs come with either pockets or MOLLE webbing, or both. MOLLE chest rigs are unarguably the best, although they shouldn’t be a priority for beginners. A reason for this is that you will need time to get used to them, figuring out the functions of each pouch, for instance, the m4 chest rigs. Moreover, these chest rigs come with a higher price tag, and you’ll also incur additional costs purchasing separate pouches.
Pocket rigs aren’t a bad option either. They have some elements of MOLLE in their back support and straps and also come with pre-made pockets. You could always attach more pockets to them if the need arises.
Purchasing the best chest rig doesn’t necessarily mean spending loads of cash. There are lots of products out there (some included in our list) that come at affordable prices yet offer perfect utility for most of the situations. The notion that large budgets will fulfill your needs and expectations is a big fallacy that should be ignored.
Expensive models normally come with added features such as extra padding, better fits, and MOLLE space, which are all luxuries if you think about it. It is up to you to weigh on how much you need these benefits and decide whether you’ll go for the expensive models or settle for the cheaper basic options. All price ranges come with durable chest rigs to allow you to spend how much you want.
The MOLLE gear is one of the most important features to look out for in your chest rig. The system allows you to set up your gear to your preference. One thing that mustn’t go without saying is that a MOLLE chest rig is more expensive than rigs with pockets and entry-level pouches.
An alternative to settle for if your rig lacks the MOLLE webbing is a tactical vest that comes with sufficient pouches. The idea is also good if you’re looking to save on some cash. MOLLE gears are, however, designed to withstand harsh conditions.
The whole concept of a chest rig is to increase your storage capacity but still have your equipment close enough where you can access them anytime. The storage capacity isn’t determined by the number of pockets or pouches but rather the amount of its MOLLE webbing combined with its structure. A poor quality chest rig might have all the webbing, but if it is weak, then it will fall apart, one loaded with the lightest weight.
Similarly, your chest rig can be durable and incredibly strong but will be rendered of less importance if it has an unreasonable amount of webbing. More webbing means more space to attach pouches and carry more gear.
While these are the factors to consider when making your chest rig purchase, there are certain factors that shouldn’t cross your mind even one bit. You need not worry about factors such as the number of pockets and comfort levels. Chest rigs come with limited storage space, so there is no need for checking one with numerous pockets. Nevertheless, you could always purchase separate pockets and attach them at any time.
Check out this YouTube video for more insight on how to use a chest rig.
5 Best Chest Rigs Reviews and Recommendations
CONDOR Recon Chest Rig
If you’re familiar with the tactical niche, then you must be aware of the prestigious Condor brand. With years of experience in the tactical industry, this company has branded itself as one of the most successful companies and is causing nightmares to most of its competitors. Condor has its signature wrapped all-around chest rigs with their legit, impeccable products. One such example is which is giving most products a run for their money is the Condor Recon Chest Rig.
Condor Recon Chest Rig begins by being everything you could ever want in a chest rig- padded x-harness, shoulder strap with a D-ring and MOLLE webbing, three kangaroo mag pouches fitting up to 12 mags and a mesh pocket at the front for added storage. You will notice that the mags of this rig are stack on one another, thus concentrating the weight at the front instead of spreading them out. While this might not be favorable to many, the design is great as it offers higher mobility as there aren’t any mags on the sides.
The chest rig fits most of the waist sizes, although you will be required to tight it to its fullest if you’re 30 inches wide and below. Similar to most of the brand’s rigs, this one also comes with cheap plastic parts that are prone to damage and may require regular replacement.
- Affordable pricing
- Has padded straps and MOLLE webbing
- Numerous mag spaces
- Comfortable to wear
- The weight isn’t evenly distributed
- Not suitable for waits under 30 inches
- Its plastic parts will require frequent replacement
VTAC Assault Chest Rig
The durability and ultra-light material of the VTAC Assault Chest Rig make it a favorite for professionals who strictly mean business. To begin with, this lightweight chest rig offers users a total of 10 pouches- two general-purpose pouches, two radio mag pouches, two pistol mag pouches, and finally four magazine pouches. All these pouches make up for its lack of MOLLE webbing- but who needs a MOLLE with all these spaces?
The chest rig is available in two color options, olive green and coyote brown- all of which are perfect if you wish to reduce your visibility and camouflage with wild surroundings. Adjusting this chest rig won’t be a hassle. It also comes with an X-harness that does a perfect job in providing you with a snug but comfortable fit.
There are some downsides with this chest rig, as there are with any other products. For starters, the price attached to it is high, which may not go well with a lot of people. Secondly, the rig lacks MOLLE webbing, which limits you to some functions, and finally, it isn’t suitable for people with waists less than 30 inches. All in all, it is a nice chest rig worth trying out.
- Numerous pockets and pouches
- Lightweight and comfortable
- Designed using high quality and durable materials
- Lacks MOLLE webbing
RAPDOM Tactical Molle Chest Rigs
RAPDOM features young designers with love for the tactical industry. Its mission is to empower its customers with high-quality gears for top-notch performance. Their chest rig, RAPDOM Tactical Chest Rig, is proof of their determination and hard work. The chest rig comes with impeccable levels of quality. It uses 100% Nylon in its construction.
Why should you settle for this chest rig? It is easy to put on and off, it is easily adjustable to fit most body types, comes with numerous pouches and pockets, and finally has a mesh padding at the back for adaptable comfort. Also, the chest rig comes with a one-size-fit-all with people between waists 30 and 44 inches.
The material used in the construction of this rig is 500D nylon. Also, it features UTX buckles and the superior quality YKK Zippers. There is nothing more that you could ask from a chest rig. This one comes with everything. It is ideal for cosplayers, paintballers, or anyone who needs extra storage on their chests.
- Easy to put on and off
- Highly breathable
- Lightweight and comfortable
- High-quality zippers
- Might be shipped with missing parts
- Not made in the USA
Helikon-Tex Training Mini Rig
Whether you are a shooting instructor, professional shooting competitor, or you simply love going out and taking part in some shooting, comfort should be your priority- especially with chest rigs. That is what you’re settling for with the Helikon- Tex Training Mini Rig. The manufacturers of this army chest rig designed a piece that will allow you to carry your most important equipment when you’re on the move, taking up a position behind the barrier or when you’re in the prone.
This chest rig may be short of anything else but not pouches. It has four fixed pouches for flashlight, handgun mags and multi-tool, two AR and AK rifle mag pouches, a double rifle mag insert for AR, and AK chest rig, a universally acceptable removable adjustable H-strap harness, three Velcro ID panels, and a MOLLE mounted pouch for medical purposes.
With all the pouches and inserts, you will always be prepared and comfortable with this AK 47 chest rig on. Finally, this chest rig is available in eleven different colors to choose from. Coyote brown is the best option for the wilderness.
- Made in the USA
- Numerous storage spaces
- High-quality Cordura 500D
- Lightweight and comfortable
- Its pockets are too small
Condor Tactical Rapid Assault Chest Rig
Last but not least on our list is the Condor Tactical Rapid Assault Chest Rig. Good news- this rig is suitable for both amateurs and seasoned pros. Moreover, it fits everyone’s budget and is a great option if you’re looking for something comfortable and effective. The rig’s added comfort is courtesy of its MOLLE webbing and padded X-harness.
This Condor Chest Rig comes with a total of eight pouches- six mag pouches, a front pocket with a hook and a loop panel, and finally a hydration bladder pocket at the back. We loved the layout of the pouches as you will not have a hard time differentiating them and knowing their usage.
Condor doesn’t fully keep its end of the bargain when it comes to the quality of this product. Some of its parts are made using plastic, which isn’t of the best quality and is susceptible to damage. However, the parts are easily available for replacement and affordable, too- thus not being such a huge deal breaker.
This chest rig provides a snug and comfortable fit for most people. If you’re the type with a small waist and normally have a hard time with chest rig, all you need to do with this one is pull the straps to their tightest setting, and you will be good to go. The rig may be a little bit tight and stiff in the beginning but will loosen up with time.
- Has a MOLLE webbing
- Padded straps for additional comfort
- Affordable pricing
- Numerous pouches
- Not ideal for large magazines
- Its plastic parts get damaged easily
As earlier mentioned, chest rigs are an essential part of the tactical wardrobe, and you shouldn’t leave them behind at all costs. Our list contains some of the best options for you in the market. The CONDOR Recon Chest Rig scoops today’s award for the best tactical chest rig followed closely behind by Helikon- Tex Training Mini Rig. Condor Tactical Rapid Assault Chest Rig scoops our award for the best chest rig for the money.
The chest rigs in our list will do a perfect job of ensuring that all your equipment are safe and close for easy retrieval. Moreover, the rigs are comfortable, and you shouldn’t have any trouble wearing them for prolonged periods. Stay safe, and have fun!