Hook and Loop in the Military

The adaptability and variety of hook and loop is perhaps most evident in its presence in the military industry. A fairly simple concept, hook and loop fasteners consist of two pieces. The hook, meaning the rough side, and the loop, or softer side, which is often referred to as "pile" by the military. When the two sides are joined together, the hooks attach to the loops, forming a strong bond that is used to fasten apparel, organize supplies and bundle military equipment and tools. Its adaptability makes this fastener incredibly useful. This rifle stock cheek rest is adjustable with hook and loop.

Rifle stock rest with hook and loop straps.

What Is Mil-Spec?

VELCRO® Brand hook and loop fasteners are made to meet all types and classes of MIL-SPEC AA55126 (Rev. C) issued by the Defense Logistics Agency. The material that meets this requirement is referred to as "Mil-Spec," short for Military Specification. This material is available in a wide variety of colors specific to military use. Some of these colors are foliage green, coyote tan, urban grey, and camouflage.

There are 4 types and 5 classes within this particular mil-spec. We stock type II, class 1 and type II, class 3 fasteners in our DuraGrip Brand. Additionally, we can also source those from VELCRO® directly to meet Berry Amendment compliance, as well as all of the other types and classes.

Mil-Spec Products And Uses

Type II, Class 1 hook and loop is most popular and is nylon fasteners with a selvage edge. The next most common mil-spec product is polyester hook and loop. These Type II, Class 3 fasteners are more resilient to U.V. rays and chemicals than the standard nylon hook and loop. Most requests for this mil-spec is for one of these two fasteners. These are most often used on flak jackets and tactical gear as well as cases and storage. They're also used for name tags and morale patches.

Classes 4 and 5 are for these same nylon and polyester fasteners, but without a selvage edge. The Class 2 fasteners are for VELCRO® Brand HI-AIR® fasteners which are woven with 75% Aramid fibers. Aramid fibers are strong and heat resistant. Other mil-spec types include different monofilaments or extruded fasteners and are available upon request and subject to minimums and lead times.

VELCRO® Brand ONE-WRAP® are used to cinch, bundle and carry wires, power cables, cargo and many other types of military equipment. Hook and loop fasteners are available in sew-on, iron-on, and peel-and-stick applications. These are great for use on combat uniforms, pocket patches, name tags, load-bearing equipment, shelters, and ballistics protection. The military uses fire retardant versions extensively as well. For any of these options, you can reach out to us via email at [email protected] to request a quote.

History And New Products

Hook and loop initially garnered little respect or appreciation in the military. Complaints about the noisy fastener spoiling covert ops missions or gathering dirt and debris led the government to consider other options. However, advancements have been made to keep hook-and-loop fasteners prevalent in military use. The development of a silent version greatly reduces the ripping sound often associated with hook and loop.

Hook and loop fasteners have continued to spread throughout a wide array of industries because of their ease of use and innovative and adaptable applications. Hook and loop is used every day in the military and tons of other industries.


Slava Yurthev Copyright