Question on the AIMS 74 pouch, and how it's used...
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Thread: Question on the AIMS 74 pouch, and how it's used...

  1. #1
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    Hey gang. Just got one of these, NOS from AoA. The interior of the main pocket of this pouch is pretty much identical to the Soviet design with respect to how it's supposed to be used. All standard stuff. Three 30 round mags, slots for 4 empty strippers, loop for the spoon, pocket for loaded strippers. Pretty much the only differences between the big pocket on the AIMS pouch and the Soviet AK-74 pouch is the materials used and the lack of the cleaning rod sleeve on the Romanian.

    Anyway, my question is about the small pockets on the outside. What goes in these exactly? The shape is different than any other 545 pouch I know of. Sure, the black squarish oil bottle and a standard Kalashnikov style tube cleaning kit can fit in these pockets, but it's a bad fit...the pocket is much taller than the oil bottle...much wider than the cleaning kit. Why? The BFA doesn't really fit in these very well either, though it is closer than the other two items. All of this suggests to me that what's supposed to go in them in differs from what people are saying on the introweb. Who knows the real scoop?

    The closest analog I can think of is the E. German AK 74 pouch. It has a tall side pocket, but that's for a 'cleaning kit roll'. AFAIK, the Romanians don't use those.

    rom7402.jpg
    Last edited by jekbrown; 07-01-2020 at 05:30 AM.

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    Interesting..got 4 mags in mine but never thought about 3 mags and the pocket for loaded strippers. Definitely interested in the answers to all your questions

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    Quote Originally Posted by PhilRazz View Post
    Interesting..got 4 mags in mine but never thought about 3 mags and the pocket for loaded strippers. Definitely interested in the answers to all your questions
    Yep, that's the Soviet pattern. With the type 1 & 2 7.62x39mm guns they issued 5 cell pouches. Loaded up with slab mags, full oil bottle etc they were heavy as hell. 180 round capacity if you also had a loaded mag in the gun. For the rest of Soviet history they kept trying to get the grunts the same # (or more) of rounds but in a lighter package. When the 74 comes along, 545 makes it possible. 1 mag in gun + 3 in pouch = 120 rounds. Add 60 rounds on loaded strippers and you're at 180...and it's all much lighter than the 762 set up. The Poles, Romanians, Germans, and Bulgarians all followed the same general scheme in their 545 pouches.

    It's worth noting that this usually isn't how 545 pouches are actually used in the real world...it's just how the pouch system is designed to be used. It's not uncommon for Russian 545 pouches to be called "4 cell mag pouches"...in Russia, and if you look through enough surp pouches you've probably seen one with the leather clip retaining strap cut off so the "4th cell" can be more easily used to hold a 4th magazine instead of loaded clips. Truth of the matter is that the soviets never made a 4 cell AK pouch. They did RPK, but not AK, in any caliber. Anyway, lots of Russian dudes that were in the army say they never saw / used stripper clips. Anyway, in my collection I like to set up one pouch from each country in the way it's designed...and the rest I usually just put 4 mags in. The difference between design and function in the field is interesting to me, as a former grunt.
    Last edited by jekbrown; 06-27-2020 at 06:09 PM.
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    A Soviet Sniper in Afghanistan - Sniper's Paradise

    SP: Did you ever carry spare 5.45x39 ammo in stripper clips?

    Andrei: No, never. You could pack those little packets everywhere, in your side pockets, in your pants, everywhere. But with the stripper clips you have to first load those, then you have to load them into a magazine, so nobody ever bothered. I've seen them in the armory, but nobody ever used them.

    Makes sense when you think about it. In combat you have a lot of "down time" where slotting rounds one by one into a magazine is really not that big a deal. If you're using a Mosin or an SKS where reloads of your only fixed magazine are done with clips than obviously stripper clips makes sense, but with an AK where you're carrying spare mags, it makes much more sense to just carry spare ammo and mags rather than deal with an intermediary of stripper clips that adds bulk and weight.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Firebolt1176 View Post
    A Soviet Sniper in Afghanistan - Sniper's Paradise

    SP: Did you ever carry spare 5.45x39 ammo in stripper clips?

    Andrei: No, never. You could pack those little packets everywhere, in your side pockets, in your pants, everywhere. But with the stripper clips you have to first load those, then you have to load them into a magazine, so nobody ever bothered. I've seen them in the armory, but nobody ever used them.

    Makes sense when you think about it. In combat you have a lot of "down time" where slotting rounds one by one into a magazine is really not that big a deal. If you're using a Mosin or an SKS where reloads of your only fixed magazine are done with clips than obviously stripper clips makes sense, but with an AK where you're carrying spare mags, it makes much more sense to just carry spare ammo and mags rather than deal with an intermediary of stripper clips that adds bulk and weight.
    great read! Love first-hand accounts from actual grunts. It's fascinating how much thought the Soviets put into 74 accessories, and comical how quickly/easily the super-pragmatic grunts tossed 'the plan' out the window when it doesn't work for them.

    Anywho, the more I look at the AIMS pouch, the more I'm thinking the cleaning kit and BFA go on one pocket...which would leave the other pocket as the only mystery. It's almost double the depth necessary to store the standard issue oil bottle, and there has to be a reason.

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    A soviet style bandage is about the right size to fit in the larger pocket or at least one of the rubber tourniquets.
    Last edited by scottyb; 07-06-2020 at 03:54 AM.
    needs moar AK

    or beer


  9. #8
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    Now that's an intriguing possibility! I'm no expert on Soviet mil 1st aid supplies, do you mean bandages like these?

    soviet_military_bandage.jpg

    Do we know if the Romanians used a similarly sized bandage in their mil? Of course, now that I think about it, it seems pretty unlikely that they'd omit either the cleaning kit or the oiler. If so, whatever else goes in these pockets would have to fit in there along with them. Could one of these bandages fit alongside the cleaning kit or on top of the oiler?
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  10. #9
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    hmmm, looks like this did use a similar bandage...

    https://www.ebay.com/itm/Individual-...-/251788749136

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    The people I am in touch with from the Romanian military are not willing to give too many details about anything.
    They make a big deal out of nothing stating it is confidential, a state/military secret and others should not know about it.
    Of course I argued my point that what took place more than 30 years ago is hardly any strategic issue, especially since absolutely everything change since then.
    I can count how many mags each current Romanian soldier has and what weapon (from internet posted pictures), but I am not able to find out how many they used to cary in the 70s and 80s.
    Totally stupid.
    This post may or may not contain Sarcasm.

  12. #11
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    Yep, that is the one.
    needs moar AK

    or beer


  13. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by dixy2k View Post
    The people I am in touch with from the Romanian military are not willing to give too many details about anything.
    They make a big deal out of nothing stating it is confidential, a state/military secret and others should not know about it.
    Of course I argued my point that what took place more than 30 years ago is hardly any strategic issue, especially since absolutely everything change since then.
    I can count how many mags each current Romanian soldier has and what weapon (from internet posted pictures), but I am not able to find out how many they used to cary in the 70s and 80s.
    Totally stupid.
    Yeah, it's hard to imagine that anyone in the world is still actually using combloc era pouches for mags. Almost as a rule they protect mags well, and retain them great, but they are also very slow to get mags out of compared to more modern stuff. I can see novel new infantry weapons/comm/optics being stuff you want to keep secret, but surplus pouches and stuff? Ridiculous.

  14. #13
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    I know. I don't get it.

    I understand the secrecy of today's military, but in case of obsolete equipment from 40 years ago makes no sense.

    The irony is that, again, I can see pictures with their equipment today and be able to identify just about everything, but kept in the dark about something nobody uses anymore and belongs to a museum.
    I guess old habits never die.
    This post may or may not contain Sarcasm.

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    Are these people you are in touch with able to tell you what the heck the finish is on Romanian rifles to end the debate once and for all? 20 bucks on parkerizing :P

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    hahaha. No. They are former military, not Cugir employees.

    I think they used paint. I remember seeing them peeling off and being worn out with exposed bare metal. It's possible that only the export ones were parkerized. IDK.
    This post may or may not contain Sarcasm.

 

 

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