Wednesday, 6 July 2016

ERYX Frame

Just to clarify: I don’t consider this a review of the product. I have no real time carrying or using this, so all this is meant as is a photo chronicling of a piece of (by this point) historical Canadian military surplus. This was lent to me by Andrew Kent, because I expressed an interest in it. I have something of an obsession with pack frames, and this one really intrigued me when I saw it. I want to procure one of my own, replace the waist belt and shoulder straps with the offerings of Hill People Gear. The main thing I like about this pack frame is the amazing number of attachment options. In order to strap anything to it though, straps would need to have a loop sewn into one end and the running end put through it. When I get one I’ll go to the trouble to do that, but I didn’t bother for the time I had this to finger fornicate.

These were manufactured in 1998-2001 to carry items for the ERYX anti-tank missile system. And it’s also just a really versatile packboard that anything else imaginable can be mounted on and to. ERYX is being phased out in 2016. Curious whether this will be dumped on the surplus market, whether it already was years ago, or whether they’ll retain it for something else. It is adjustable for any (most – being a giant, it isn’t really sized for me of course – not with the shoulder and waist belt system that’s on it now anyway) body size as the shoulder harness and hip belt system can slide up or down in channels in the frame. They lock into place by 2 screws and a sliding bracket. 
The frame itself has the NATO Stock # 8465-21-920-2064. 
I’m not sure what the specific plastic is, but it is very strong. Measures 25½" x 14¼" x ½". It was manufactured by PAPP Plastics in Windsor, Ontario. This particular one in July 1999.
Closeup of the carry handle and how the shoulder load lifter straps attach.
Closeup of the means of adjusting the height to suit the user.
Closeup of how the bottom of the shoulder straps attaches to the frame. The last photo also shows what I meant earlier of how I would construct straps to allow lashing cargo to the frame.
Hope my fingers give a bit of a sense of how burly the frame is.
The hip belt and shouder straps. The hip belt has the NATO Stock # 8465-21-920-5649, and the shoulder harness has the NATO Stock # 8465-21-920-5637. Both were made by Pacific Safety Products.
Closeups of the top of the right and left shoulder strap and load lifter.
Closeups of the side of the shoulder straps and the load lifter straps. Again, hope my fingers give a sense of how thick they are.
A side view of the shoulder straps and waist belt.
A closeup of the waist belt. After years of using the much thinner Kifaru waist belts, this one just felt weird. And I guess I’ve also gotten used to a belt with PALS webbing. No ability to attach something, also seems weird.
A not very well centred photo of the back pad of the waist belt.
Same spot, just viewed from above, giving a glimpse of the way the waist belt is attached to the pack frame.
I’m not sure if these photos really do justice to trying to depict the quick release on the shoulder strap. (A requirement specific probably only to military usage – the ability to quickly ditch a heavy load.) Two stiffened tabs go through the black shoulder strap connector and OD sternum strap connector. It's held in place by the Velcro you can see at the top of the shoulder strap in the last picture. In between the two is a D-Ring with a bobble. Pull on it and the two are released, allowing the user to ditch the load.
The bobble. (For lack of a better term.)

Very glad to have the opportunity to check this item out. I definitely want one. If and when I get one I will make the afore mentioned modifications, build some straps to go with it, and really do a proper test of its capabilities.

Some more photos can be found here:

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