Gentex Helmet Developments from Maneuver Conference 2016

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Gentex Mission Configuarble Helmet Cover (MCHC) Photo by Will Rodriguez

Gentex is commonly known as a helmet company but they are much more than that.  Their specialty is actually producing solutions that go far beyond just the shell of a helmet and ballistic protection.  They are very concerned with creating solutions that make the soldier’s ability to complete the mission safer and more efficient.  Their three latest developments all meet that mark.

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 Gentex MCHC Inside. Photo by Will Rodriguez

The first new development I saw at the Gentex booth was the Mission Configuarble Helmet Cover (MCHC).  It features a fitted helmet cover with rails and night vision mount already attached.  They recommend using one screw for the NVG mount but even without the screw the helmet cover only allows a couple of degrees of wobble.  The helmet cover eliminates having to drill extra holes in a helmet (especially for rails) as well as simplifying moving one’s kit to a new helmet.  The attachment system also seems much simpler than previous helmet cover solutions and includes integrated wire management.  Estimated MSRP is going to be $189.

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Gentex ACH Upgrade Kit. Photo by Will Rodriguez

Brain buckets have always been uncomfortable.  Gentex’s latest suspension system, Ops Core ACH upgrade kit is the most comfortable I’ve tried allowing for a great degree of airflow.  It also provides improved protection from the shock resulting from a blow to the helmet.  Again, installation looks easy peasy as the unit is one piece and Velcro friendly.  The center segment is removable though for those wearing a headset.  The kit also includes rails and chinstrap.  Estimated MSRP is $117.

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Gentex CVC. Photo by Will Rodriguez

Gentex has not forgotten our armored crewman and vehicle operators with a new CVC helmet.  Three levels of protection are available with the highest rated shell providing 9mm level protection.  The real improvement though is the partnership with Bose in an improved communications system.  From my days in a Bradley or M1 tank I can say there was plenty of room for improvement in the quality of radio transmissions to be made.  Often that lack of fidelity was made up with max volume.  I’ve never seen let alone heard of a poor Bose product so the improvements in this area is pretty likely.  Unfortunately there wasn’t a working communication system to plug into to hear the difference.

I’m hoping to secure an MCHC and ACH upgrade kit for my own gear to provide real hands on feedback but Gentex’s reputation is pretty sterling.  I bet troops are going to love these improvements.

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About The Author

Will Rodriguez is a 20+ year former Infantry officer with experience in both light and mechanized units as well as armor. His last assignment was serving in the Infantry school's battle lab doing DOTMLPF (doctrine, organization, training, materiel, leadership and education, personnel and facilities) assessment on weapon systems, equipment) assessment on weapons systems, equipment and technology to equip the Infantry for the next 10-20 years. Will also is the senior editor for GruntsandCo.com a website dedicated to issues of interest to the Infantrymen and those that support them. Will is a frequent contributor to Spotter up as well as an assistant editor. His work has also been published in SpecialOperations.com, SOFREP.com, the Loadout Room and Infantry Magazine. He is also a firearms instructor and holds a masters in Counseling and Leader Development.

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