It’s a modern classic, a novel idea that combines the convenience of a “Fanny Pack” or Low Pitched Waist Pack such as offered by Eagle Industries or Flyye but with the ability of being hung under the wearers existing body armour or chest rig.
“The Dangler” is probably Ferro Concepts most iconic piece of gear… Sure, the Slickster and Slingster might be great additions to the lineup but I’d hazard a guess that the Dangler is a best seller.
Ferro Concepts comes from humble beginnings, Airsoft is in their blood but they have carved out a sizeable chunk of the real steel market, Many law enforcement agencies both in the US and increasingly in Europe and the UK have seen the quality and innovation of their products and although not as common as some other manufacturers you’ll see their gear being used in certain roles (See The Reptile House‘s piece on Ferro carriers “in the wild“).
So, the Dangler… Why does it exist and what are the benefits?
Well… As mentioned on a previous article, The humble Bum Bag/Fanny Pack is used to provide a little additional load carriage for many soldiers, It’s seen on many a reference picture… Especially those who follow USSF units. For carrying medical or mission specific items it’s a great way to supplement your load carriage abilities.
The Ferro Dangler is a great concept (No pun intended), and whilst it’s probably not the original it’s certainly one of the designs most associated with the idea. In fact the term Hanger and Dangler are used in much the same way that Hoover and Vacuum are synonymous with each other.
The design is as simple as it is genius, quite simply it’s a fanny pack shaped pouch that attaches to the hook and loop field at the bottom of many a plate carrier or chest rig, This provides the user with a fair amount of semi-modular storage in a place that’s easy to access and for the most part not in the way.
Inside the Dangler on the rear wall you’ll find 4 elastic loops, almost perfectly sized for double stack pistol mags or similar sized items…
On the corresponding side in the “front” a loop field allows modular storage such as BFG dappers or Haley straps.
I’ve used the Dangler on and off for years… It’s a versatile addition to most load-outs and has a little side benefit of offering that little bit of protection on your abdomen, for Airsoft it certainly helps protect an often painfully shot area from the brunt of any shots.
However… It’s downsides are linked intrinsically to its benefits… much like anything you buy it’s important to understand what it’s being used for and make sure you buy to meet your needs, not the needs of simply looking cool.
If you spend time prone or sat down you might find that depending on your build and the way you set up your rig it might end up in the way… Ferro have gone so far as to taper the overall shape of the Dangler to ensure that it doesn’t interfere with your movement, Bit even this in itself could result in it not fitting your needs… The Spiritus SACK or Haley Hanger having a more uniform, square profile might be a better option for certain objects or loadouts.
One of the things I really like is the Zip, Looking back at early reviews it appears that the Zip has undergone a design change with a “guarded” zipper being the more contemporary choice over a standard self repairing type seen in the earlier reviews. The moulded pull tab isn’t everyone’s cup of tea but I’ve not had any cause for concern.
The loop field on the front is a nice addition… great if using it as a medic pouch or simply to give you a little more patch real estate, And as we all know it’s all about how strong your patch game is.
A final note, the build quality is superb… Sure you can get a repro pouch for half the cost but the original is very well built and considering it’s ability to perform so many functions I’d suggest that £40 is a more than fair price.
In a world of abdomen pouches is the Dangler still king? Well I’ve recently migrated to the Spiritus SACK so for me at least it’s a great option but not quite what my loadout requires. If your a die hard plate carrier fan however, The Dangler might just be the best addition you’ve ever made to your loadout.