Do you want to know what kind of weaponry is needed to own or work for a PMC? If YES, here are 15 types of private military contractor gears.
Private military contractors are contracted essentially to help military officers in war zones and combat situations. These experts perform a wide variety of duties including repairing and maintaining infrastructure as well as pipelines. Others are hired to guard government buildings and corporate headquarters.
In some cases also, they also provide personal protection for dignitaries and politicians. Note that in terms of roles, these contractors are only involved in defensive duties and therefore are not expected to engage in combat unless attacked.
They are not used for offensive military actions, and therefore the term “mercenary” may not necessarily suit them. Most times, private military contractors serve as armed guards in areas where terrorists or criminals are expected to strike.
For instance, they may ride with a vehicle convoy to show military presence in an area in order to discourage criminal activities or attempted ambush. A contractor may also patrol a corporate building at risk of a terrorist attack. Since they are hired to work in war zones, their job is very different from that of a security person or a bodyguard.
As a private military contractor, you have to be prepared, and train for warfare as you will be working in battlefields. Ideally, it explains why most professionals in this industry are retired military personnel and veterans. To become a private military contractor you need to have a certain military or law enforcement experience.
It is not mandatory but it will increase your chance to find the right job. Some companies hire candidates with extensive knowledge and background in law enforcement to help in intelligence gathering. In such cases, what is asked for is basic military training and experience, a clean criminal record, and in some cases membership of an association that deals with hiring private military contractors.
Also note that you will be expected to have prior knowledge in handling weapons, as this will give you an edge over others.
Common Military Gears Used By Private Military Contractors and Their Cost
Here is a list of weapons private military contractors use in the course of their work.
Western assault rifles: $586 – $1,411
Private military contractors who are alums of elite US military units often prefer the same weapons they carried in the service such as the SCAR-L or M4 assault rifles that fire 5.56mm rounds. If they want to up the calibre a little, they can go with the SCAR-H or M14, which both use a 7.62mm round.
High Mobility Multi-purpose Wheeled Vehicle
The HMMWV is a lightweight, highly mobile, diesel-powered, four-wheel-drive tactical vehicle that uses a common chassis to carry a wide variety of military hardware ranging from machine guns to tube-launched, optically tracked, wire command-guided (TOW) anti-tank missile launchers.
It must perform in a wide variety of terrain, from deserts to jungles, for long periods of time, with minimal maintenance. It has to carry its cargo and occupants in safety while dodging instruments of war — bullets, bombs and mines.
AKs of varying types: $586 – $1,411
Contractors and their companies can’t always get the import/export licenses they need to bring weapons into their area of operations, so companies sometimes source weapons from local vendors. Notably, this results in a number of contractors carrying Kalashnikovs.
This was especially prevalent in the early 2000s in Iraq when the State Department started hiring private companies for overseas security but hadn’t yet begun issuing them the needed licenses to import weapons.
Combat Tent: $50.59
This is a two-man, three-season, free-standing, double wall tent. The Combat Tent incorporates a vapour permeable tent body with a waterproof floor and fly, which also provides 20 sq. ft. of vestibule area for gear storage.
The Combat Tent has two doors (entrance/exit openings), and using shock-corded poles, requires no special tools for erection and striking. In addition, the rain fly is adaptable for use independent of the tent body, utilizing the poles and stakes provided.
While private military contractors are generally associated with lighter weapons, they’re sometimes authorized mass-casualty inflicting systems like M203 or M320 grenade launchers.
Cost: Varies according to manufacturer
T-11 parachute: $322
This parachute replaces the legacy T-10, which has been in use with the U.S. Army for over 50 years. Designed, developed and manufactured by Airborne Systems, the T-11 is the next generation non-steerable troop parachute system.
Airborne Systems is the only qualified source to provide the T-11 system internationally. The T-11 system includes the main canopy and harness and the T-11R reserve parachute.
Shotguns: $480 – $1,200
Shotguns can be loaded with buckshot to cripple all enemies in a confined area or slugs to immediately shutdown a single target. They also allow contractors to quickly “unlock” doors if they need to evacuate their client.
Individual First Aid Kit: $1,013.15
This helps individual contractors to provide Self-Aid/Buddy-Aid and interventions for two leading causes of death while on military missions, severe haemorrhage and inadequate airway.
They increase soldier survivability during dispersed operations and the expandable pouch allows for METT-C specific “add-ins.” Weighing one pound, the IFAK consists of medical items packaged inside of a modified MOLLE 100 round SAW ammo pouch.
Modular Tactical Vest: $1,620
The Improved Modular Tactical Vest delivers not only better protection, but also enhanced manoeuvrability. The new protective equipment provides increased comfort, a more efficient combat load weight distribution, greater ease of weapons handling and reduced weight.
The standard IMTV offers protection against shrapnel and 9mm pistol rounds. Most contractors are issued Enhanced Small Arms Protective Inserts, commonly called “SAPI Plates,” which fit inside the IMTV and provide protection against rifle rounds.
Joint Service General Purpose Mask (JSGPM)
This is a lightweight, protective mask system incorporating state-of-the-art technology to protect U.S. Joint forces from actual or anticipated threats. There are two variants: The M-50 for ground and shipboard personnel and the M-51 for armoured combat vehicle crewman. The JSGPM provides:
- 24 hours of above-the-neck protection from CB agents and radioactive particles
- Head-eye-respiratory protection against chemical, biological, radiological, and nuclear (CBRN) threats (including toxic industrial materials)
- Flame resistant Hood for M-51 (Combat Vehicle Version)
- Improved CB protection
- Improved compatibility with current and emerging CB garments
- Improved reliability, improved comfort
- Enhanced field of view (greater than or equal to 80 percent)
- Lower breathing resistance (less than or equal to 30 millimetre of water)
- Reduced weight/bulk
- Improved drinking system design
- Improved mask carrier system
Cost: Not available
Night Vision Optic: $644.75
The PVS-14 Alpha is currently the primary night vision optic used by the U.S. military and Special Operations units. Powered by an Autogated Gen 3 image intensifier, the system has recently been redesigned to operate on a single “AA” battery.
The PVS-14A includes a built-in IR illuminator, fully adjustable head mount and mil-spec multi-coated optics. Automatic Brightness Control and Bright Source Protection are standard. Note that the manual gain control feature allows the user to increase or decrease image tube brightness for best possible image contrast in high and low light conditions.
Modular Lightweight Load-carrying Equipment
Note that this system consists of several modular components. It allows the contractor to carry tactical combat gear in the most effective manner for lethality and survivability. The modularity of the system allows the contractor’s load to be set.
It consists of a fighting load carrier that attaches to releasable body armour known as the tactical assault panel. The TAP has permanent pockets for six magazines, a radio and GPS. The webbing on the front of the TAP allows for attachment of any MOLLE pouch that a Soldier’s kit may need.
Cost: Not available
Walkie Talkie: $578
Clear and reliable communications are vital for security teams. Since security teams need to be constantly vigilant of their colleagues’ observations and movements, real-time communications systems are necessary to conduct their job effectively and efficiently.
If communication among a security team is poor, this can create liabilities for the areas or people they are seeking to secure. One of the most common and reliable means of communicating in a security context is an up-to-date two-way radio system. For security teams, classic but modern two-way radios or “walkie-talkies” can make all the difference.
Most private military contractors prefer to wear boots worn by many of the U.S. Special Forces (SF). Their options are not limited to brands like Asolo, Merrell or Salomon boots. These are a lot beefier, sturdier which allows one to carry a large rucksack/pack in rugged rocky terrain without worrying about turning an ankle or worse. Some prefer others, similar products like the Salomon X-Chase.