26 Aug Templar’s Gear© CPC ROC Gen 3 – Before You Buy
Templar’s Gear© CPC ROC Gen 3 – Before You Buy
A while back we became one of the first that got to lay their hands on the new 2021 version of the Templar’s Gear© Crusader Plate Carrier ROC Set. This new version has some very good improvements compared to the previous generation and in this blog we’ll tell you all about it.
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As you may or may not know, Viper have been running the previous version of the Templar’s Gear© CPC ROC for over a year and a half now and in our opinion and experience it is amongst the best plate carriers made in Europe. And we’re sure others that have one will agree on this.
This second generation is a lightweight, comfortable, durable and very modular plate carrier which provides you with plenty of options. Now, of course due to people actually using these, Templar’s Gear got feedback and made their next step in the evolution of this product.
So, we here have the third generation of the ROC plate carrier and we must say that Templar’s Gear somehow managed to make an already excellent product even better. To be more specific what was already an extremely modular plate carrier, now even got more options and for that we’ll cover this entire plate carrier today.
Now, in order to show you what has changed we’ll go over its build and features and compare the differences with Viper’s personal older generation.
We can already tell you up front that there are two changes that make a major difference in modularity compared to the old ROC version. But we’ll cover those later in this blog. So first let’s have a look into the build of this plate carrier.
Just as with all the Templar’s Gear© products, this plate carrier is made of 500 denier Cordura® and Cordura® laminate which is the standard these days. Because it makes a good match between weight & durability.
Aside Cordura®, Templar’s Gear© also uses the original Velcro® brand for their hook and loops, they use the original ROC buckles from 2M® and also Coolmax® is used as well.
On top, the CPC ROC is IRR treated for a better concealment against devices that detect Infrared, such as night vision goggles. So, if you want to be ready for that type of stuff you know you’re covered with this one.
Also knowing Templar’s Gear©, this plate carrier is entirely constructed with a laser-cut design to reduce the weight as much as possible. To give you an idea about this, a classic stitched PALS plate carrier could weigh about 1300 grams, this one on the other hand only weighs 890 grams. So, that’s a big reduction and in the end saves you energy.
Now, weight-wise if we compare this one to the previous version it actually weighs twenty grams more, but for the changes they’ve made this is totally justified. We’ll come to those features in bit.
As for the stitching of the CPC ROC, it is very well and neatly done and from my personal experience with the previous version, the stitching is one of the strongest parts on this whole product.
Even if the Cordura® start to fray after use and it actually reaches those stitches, they still won’t give in and that keeps the entire construction nicely together. Which is exactly the kind of reliability you would expect.
If we look at the color options for this plate carrier, there are a lot of possibilities. Currently Templar’s Gear© is able to produce 14 different patterns and colors. To name a few, Concamo, Woodland, Ranger Green, Multicam Black and ATACS variants are all possibilities.
And the good thing is that about 95% of their products can be made in all these colors which is certainly interesting if you’re looking for a complete setup.
The carrier is meant to carry SAPI or ESAPI sized hard ballistic plates. But of course weighted training plates can fit as well. In fact, Templar’s Gear© recently released their very own training plates on the market, which replicate ballistic plates very closely. We use them for everything that doesn’t require ballistic protection and they’re our personal favorites. So, if you fancy a set yourself, those can also be found on our webshop already.
As for the sizes you can get this one in two versions, namely a M and L size. Here the M size is meant for M sized plates and the L version can carry L sized plates. As for the cummerbund sizes, the M version fits people with a chest circumference between 90 to 110 centimeters. While the L cummerbund fits for those that have a circumference between 105 up to 125 centimeters.
To give you an example, I have a circumference of one-hundred and four and use a size M.
So that is everything regarding the build of this carrier, let’s now go over to its features and start with the front plate bag.
Front Plate Bag
At first sight, the front plate bag of this new version looks very similar to the old one, but there are some noticeable differences.
To start off, the front features 7 by 6 PALS slots on the bottom and on top there are 5 by 4 PALS slots. Compared to the old version this is one has an extra row of slots on top which allows for more attachment options than before. This will especially be interesting for the use of an admin pouch or phone case.
Also the buckles got changed to a more rugged version and they got rid of the elastic bands, so it’s easier to remove and attach those buckles. Only a downside I can imagine, is that it can make a clacking sound with other equipment this way. It’s not significantly loud, but we know some people like to take this in consideration.
And for you guys who are wondering, yes the current and previous generations of buckles are compatible.
Next are the PTT spots which have improved as well. These are now slimmer and unlike with the previous version, I am now able to mount my PTT with its clip directly on these. So no more need to work with elastic bands.
A feature that stayed is the Velcro® on its design. Here there’s the top one for patch placement and the bottom one for the use of quick interchanging of different front panel setups.
Cable & tube managers
Another thing that stayed, are the cable and tube Velcro® managers. Which is good because they always come in handy to keep everything neatly organized.
Another thing that changed quite a bit is the backing on the plate bags. This padding got an entire new look from the CC foam and Coolmax® being redesigned in shape. This change provides a better sweat distribution, airflow and comfort than the previous generation. And this above the fact that the Coolmax design provides a cooling effect and important as well, it’s an easy to clean system unlike the commonly used 3D mesh.
Next, if we look at the flap that holds the plates inside. For both the front and back plate bags these have changed slightly in design for an easier use and a better hold of your plates. It’s not a significant thing, but sometimes it’s about the details.
New side flaps
Moving on, we come to what’s probably the biggest and most convenient change on this new version. This CPC ROC can take 2 Velcro® removable side flaps in its design. These are not included when buying the plate carrier BTW, they are sold separately.
These too are laser cut and both add an extra PALS space of 6 by 2 each on both sides. What these do, is give you the ability to attach for example an extra rifle mag pouch or what is very commonly done these days is the placement of a radio here.
This because it allows you to access it easily by yourself this way. Also mounting your radio like this is more convenient than mounting it on the cummerbund, which I used to do. This way allows you to fully open up your carrier, whereas otherwise the cabling is still connected to that cummerbund.
That’s it for the front plate bag, so let’s now look at the back one.
Now, in practice you will have to find the right spot to not make that radio press again your ribs, but once you’ve found that sweet spot it’ll only provide you advantages like this.
Back Plate Bag
The back plate bag is basically exactly the same as it was. Which is a good thing, because things that work well, best stay the way they are.
So, this means the back still has its 11 by 6 PALS slots and its 1 by by 4 extra row on top.
CPC zipper system
It also features the CPC zipper system on the back for quick interchangeable back panels. Which allows for different back panel setups or a simple removal to wear a backpack.
The Velcro® on its design also stayed the same, which allows for a big ID patch on the upper back side of the bag. An example of this is what you usually see with police units.
Cable & tube managers
Furthermore, the back also features Velcro® managers on both sides to ease that cable and tube management, just as on the front panel.
Also the low profile drag handle is still present on this version. And the good thing about it, is that they kept it accessible even if you’re carrying stuff on your back.
Cummerbund adjustment system
Last thing regarding the back, is that the cummerbund adjustment system stayed the same as well. Meaning a very simple Velcro® flap design for accessing your cummerbund adjustment system. And we’re glad they kept it that way, because in our eyes it is still the best and most simple system we’ve ever come across.
So, having covered the back, let’s jump over to the cummerbunds.
Just like the back, the cummerbunds stayed the same as before.
The slim cummerbunds each still offer a 6 by 5 PALS panel on both sides. This gives you a vast amount of modularity since most other brands don’t allow attachment capabilities on the inside.
The advantage of this, is that it allows you to keep a very minimalistic profile on the outside while still being able to carry magazines on your sides for example. Which is great for pistol drawings and reducing that snag probability of your equipment. So, we highly recommend you to experiment with this, because it might give you some options you’ve never thought about before.
Rigidity & comfort
Just like on the last version, to keep everything rigid and flexible, Templar’s Gear© sandwiched a plastic sheet inside the cummerbund. This so that it comfortably shapes around your body and handle the weight at the same time.
Above this, the back of the cummerbunds feature an elastic part to adjust with your body during movements. This part also stretches out when wearing thicker layers of clothing, so you don’t need to adjust the sizing every time.
This all together with how the cummerbunds are adjusted on the back, makes what’s in our opinion the overall best cummerbund system on the market.
Moving to the front of the cummerbunds, these feature the Rapid Open Connectors which is where the ROC in the name comes from. These allow for a quick and silent removal of the Crusader Plate Carrier unlike when you use Velcro®.
The buckles are the original ones made by 2M® and therefore are rugged pieces that can withstand quite a lot of stress. Do however note you use them correctly, meaning pull outwards and follow the arrow.
That said, let’s now look at the last pieces that make up this PC, namely the shoulders.
The shoulders are much better than the previous version and this is because of 2 main reasons.
- the ROC buckles are now removable
- this version now has a fixed shoulder pad design.
Let’s first get into the buckle improvement. The feedback Templar’s Gear© got from these, is that some people had the issue that these buckles interfered when they shouldered a weapon. Above that, not everyone requires to use the shoulder ROC buckles. Usually the cummerbund ones are more than enough.
So because of this, the new version is made in such a way that you have the possibility to detach the buckle on one or both shoulders.
Steps to remove a buckle:
- In order to do this you’ll have to loosen the Velcro on top of the shoulder pad and pull the ROC buckle off.
- Next you’ll open up the plate bag on the bottom and loosen the Velcro strap that is present inside the plate bag.
- Take this strap out the plate bag and pull the ROC buckle off entirely.
- Next, in order to use the shoulder strap without the buckle, you bring the Velcro strap with the PALS slits to the inside of the plate bag and attach it on the loops present on the inside.
- After this, you can use the strap that was attached on the inside and have it function now as the outside shoulder strap.
Shoulder adjustment system
Now, along with this new shoulder design also comes a very easy adjustment system. Which simply works by replacing the Velcro® straps. It is more complex adjusting it when the buckle has been removed though.
Fixed shoulder pads
As for the second big change, the shoulder pads are now attached with Velcro® which serves way better during the action. This because I sometimes experienced the buckles pressing on my collarbones due to the padding slipping away underneath it. So, that’s definitely another plus.
Now, even though they managed to entirely change the shoulders, the good features have stayed. The PALS slits on top are present to be able to mount something onto them. However, these are only present on the pads if you use the ROC buckle.
Padding + cable & tube managers
Also the pads still use the 3D mesh liner for a comfortable spread of the pressure and the 2 cable and tube managers on each side are still present as well so you can keep everything neatly organized.
And having said that, we now entirely covered the plate carrier. So let’s jump over to our final thoughts.
In overall we can say that this is probably the best plate carrier Templar’s Gear© has designed thus far. In our eyes, it doesn’t have any real cons and they pretty much nailed the design on every aspect possible.
This mainly because their CPC ROC has already proven to be a great plate carrier system with a durable design and they just made it even better. And in all honesty, we don’t think there are many improvements possible for the CPC ROC after seeing this one. But who knows, we could be wrong.
Anyway covering that, we can say that especially here in Europe there are not many brands that come close to this one when it comes to modularity options and overall quality, especially at this price point.
And because of all these reasons, we now offer this plate carrier on our shop along with other Templar’s Gear© products. And since we like this one so much, we even made a basic kit and a 2021 setup available which are both based on this CPC ROC Gen 3.
These are combo packs with lots of options and are offered with an all-year-around discount for you to take advantage from. So, all by all shop.reconbrothers.com is the place to be.
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“Templar’s Gear CPC ROC Gen 3 – Before You Buy”
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