I have been wearing the ESEE5/M5 kit for a while now during numerous activities. This past Saturday I got my first real opportunity to not only wear it for an extended amount of time, but wear it while hiking, minor rock scrambling, sitting, kneeling, etc. I think the kit will work nicely for how I am intended it to be used, but it’s going to require some modification.
I had initially used some paracord to tie the bottom part of the M5 bag to my leg so it didn’t flop around. Good idea in theory but it has some issues. In order to keep the pack stable, it has to be tied on tight enough to not move, but not so tight as to cut off circulation. The pack also has to come off, if getting into the drivers seat of a vehicle with a center console. Being able to quickly fasten and unfasten the leg cinch would be a plus.
I will be replacing the paracord with a length of webbing and a side-release buckle. I figure while I am making that, I am going to redo how it clips to my belt. I’ll remove the clip plate back from the ESEE-5′s sheath and fashion some quick release belt loops out of webbing and buckles that will allow the pack to hang at the same location as the clip plate, but offer more flexibility and comfort at the belt. The clip plate is uncomfortable with a tightly fastened belt.
The M5 has a place for your belt to run through it, but I don’t like how high that puts the knife handle.
The combined weight of the ESEE-5 and the M5 (including it’s contents) are also making me consider adding a removable baldric style shoulder strap, not so much to help with weight distribution, but to help keep my pants up!