Frameless "Bobcat" ALICE Modification
By Rod Teague
One of the problems I used to encounter when using a med ALICE w/o frame was how the pack would become misshapen after loading and then cinching the top of the ruck.
This was particularly critical when using the pack over the top of my web gear. The pack would roll around and ultimately something hard in the pack would poke me in the back making the carry difficult and sometimes painful. Heavier loads would also tear the D-rings loose making the ruck unusable w/o the frame. The solution I came up with was very simple and completely eliminated the afore mentioned problems and allowed me to carry the frameless/heavy ALICE ruck comfortably over my web gear.
Step One: Materials
1ea Med ALICE ruck
1ea 11-11.5" piece of steel tubing(from a broken camp chair.....you know; the folding kind we all use for our kids sporting events and around the camp fire)
1ea Length of 1" tubular webbing about 14-15"
1 pair LC2 shoulder straps
1ea 10"x12" piece of foam padding cut from a USGI sleep pad
Assembling the Bobcat
Cut your piece of steel tubiing to about 11-11.5" and then file the rough ends. Length isn't as important as getting a snug fit.
Next slip the the steel tube into the 1" webbing letting the ends overlap
Slip the assembled rod through the bottom of the padded yoke pushing the assembly until it is firmly at the top
Next, slip the top attachment straps of the LC2's under the tube assembly and through the D-rings
Cinch the LC2 straps to the top assembly and to the "O" ring attachments at the bottom of the ruck. Your strap/yoke assembly should look like this
Next, slip the piece of sleep pad into the radio pouch............
and your Bobcat is ready for action over your web gear.
This is an excellent modification to use for cub scouts as well. All of my boys have used this mod during their cub years then we simply upgraded to the Hellcat. I'll make another post later, showing the mods for making the Bobcat kid friendly.