The Hardpoint Equipment Axis Plate Carrier is without a doubt one of the most innovative plate carriers to come along in a while. Why you might ask, it looks like most other carriers. That is right, it does, but it is what is underneath that shows how advanced this plate carrier is compared to most others. The Hardpoint Equipment Axis Plate Carrier uses Velcro all over it. Now this is not Fisher Price Velcro, it is industrial strength Velcro. The reason for this is to be able to switch out to other setups. Say you have a AR-15 setup on the front of your plate carrier and now you want to have a shotgun setup. With traditional plate carriers you would have to take off all the pouches, etc. But with this Hardpoint Equipment Axis Plate Carrier all you have to do it take off the front panel which is secured all over by Velcro and a retention tab, then throw on another front plate carrier panel that is setup for shotgun. It literally takes 15 seconds!
Lets get down to the specifics. The construction of the Hardpoint Equipment Axis Plate Carrier are second to none. Stitching is perfect, strong and precise. There has been great care taken into how this Hardpoint Equipment Axis Plate Carrier is constructed. Made of 500D and 400D Cordura means it is lightweight and durable. The Velcro is very strong and will give you many repetitions of use, versus most others who use weaker Velcro strength. If you need to take off the front plate carrier panel, you flip the retention tab, made of nylon and Velcro, forward and then tear it off. Applying another panel is just slapping it on and putting the retention tab back. If you want to go slick, just tear off the front panel and boom! You have a slick setup you can wear under clothing with minimal bulge. There are nylon handles at the bottom of the front panels which open two flaps, which is where the cummerbund attaches. These are rather large which is great for gloved hands. You just tuck them away and it leaves a nice slick front. The webbing used is a spec rated, not the non-spec stuff used by lesser companies. This plate carrier is ready to go!
The shoulder straps are easy to operate as they are Velcro driven. Adjust them where you want them and I have never had an issue with them coming loose, etc. The main thing I like is how the plates sit in the carrier, is very secure and held in by a full length nylon flap. I have seen some companies using straps to secure the plates in and I am not a fan of that at all. It costs barely any weight or money to do it right. And Hardpoint Equipment is doing it right! On top of that, to have the plates stay in place, they have Velcro on the inside of the plate pocket. If you have smaller plates than Large, etc. you just get them in place and push down on the sides to engage the Velcro. This keeps the plates in place and allows you a lot of configurability which I have not really seen in any other plate carrier. With a price around $199, this carrier is an amazing bargain for a USA made carrier alone, but Hardpoint Equipment went the extra step to add in all this innovation! It is right there with the Mayflower APC and almost half the price of my favorite plate carrier, the Tactical Tailor Fight Light Plate Carrier. I do not think you can go wrong by purchasing the Hardpoint Equipment Axis Plate Carrier. I have not had any issues and really cannot find anything to harp on, it just works and works well.