US Military Modular Sleep System Review

We got our hands on some of these genuine US military issue, coveted sleep systems recently and they sold like cocaine pancakes.  With good reason.

The Department of Defense no longer likes Woodland camo.  Most of these sleep systems come with a Woodland camo Gore-tex bivy so its liquidation time at the DOD! 

The units are sold in bulk to various disributors who plough through pallets of them at a time weeding out the good systems from those that are irreperable.  They are then taken to market at sites like ebay or army surplus stores.  Some even trickle onto the scene from GIs returning from service.

Weight: 10lb 6oz

Cost: $60-190 depending on the condition.

Made by Tennier Industries and sold to the DOD for anywhere between $250-400 per system, these beauties are good down to -30 degrees F when properly deployed.

The most impressive component of the system in our eyes is the high quality, extremely rugged Gore-tex bivy.  It is wind and waterproof but vapor permeable with an extra large zipper and snaps up 2/3 the length of the right side.  The hood has a drawstring and velcro flap.  It freaking rocks.  New, issued, or used,  they can be had at a fraction of the cost of their civilian market counterparts.

The OD green Patrol Bag can be used alone at 30-50 degree F temperatures or it snaps into the Gore-tex bivy.  It has a nylon zipper and adjustable hood. 

The Intermediate Cold Weather bag is a black, more heavily insulated piece that can stand alone at -10 – 30 degrees F.  It is fluffy, lightweight and flippin’ hot to crawl into.  It fits inside the Patrol bag to complete the system or snaps into the bivy alone. 

The compression sack with it’s interlocking H-straps can get the entire system down to 1′ diameter in order for it to fit inside a patrol pack.  This is ambitious but it can be done…   If there’s a weak link in this system we put it on the compression sack which generally readily shows wear, has a poor functioning cord cinch and easily frayed straps.

This system is on the heavy side but in good or new condition can be had for 1/4 the cost of brand new ccivilian systems of equal cailber.  Even if you’re not interested in the entire set, do NOT pass up one of the Gore-tex bivys given the chance to grab one.

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3 Responses to US Military Modular Sleep System Review

  1. Scott in TN says:

    Question: I emailed Tennier to confirm if the Bivy’s were indeed made of Gore-Tex, since I had received an email from another web vendor that said it was not Gore-Tex. Here is Tennier’s reply:

    “We stopped using Gore in the early 2000’s and switched to an improved fabric that has been used in more than 2,000,000 systems since with no product failures. If you see one of our systems with the Gore fabric then it is about 10 years old.”

    My question is, do you think that the woodland versions that are NOT Gore-Tex are as good as the ones that are? Or should I look for older models?

    • Greenbeetle says:

      Many of the systems we come across are distributed by the DOD marked as procured by them in 2007, 2008, 2009 and the bivy’s are indeed constructed with seem tape that reads “Gore-seam”. I would tend to think gore-seam is used on Goretex but perhaps that is incorrect.

      • Scott in TN says:

        Very interesting. I wonder who the manufacturer is. Can two different manufacturers share the same NSN?

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