One of the hardest and most time consuming pieces of gear to improvise in a survival situation is cordage. So I want as much as of the best quality paracord on me at all times and there’s no more convenient and easy to carry way to take 550 paracrod along than to wear a paracord belt on your waist. In all my research I have not found a paracord belt that has more paracord woven together than the 100’ that comprises my Rattlerstrap Paracord Belt.
Let’s Take a Look...
The Rattlerstrap Paracord Survival Belt comes in 3 stock colors... black, brown and camo... And they make a limited number in my favorite color - OD Green. Each belt is handmade-to-order in Idaho in the good old US of A by a family-run company. The company weaves each strap out of commercial-grade, Type 3, 7-strand 550-pound paracord that’s manufactured in the USA.
NOW my belt is sized for a 34 inch waist --- and when taken apart includes: 1 buckle (THAT I’ll talk about in a minute) 2 - ten-foot (or 3 meter paracord lengths) and 2 forty-foot (or 12 meter paracord) lengths... for a total of almost exactly 100 feet (or 30 meters)... which, when pulled apart into its 7 strands and outer casing... equals about 800 feet of usable cordage or over 2 1/2 football or soccer fields....
800 feet (or about 243 meters) is a lot of strong and usable cordage for camp, bushcraft and survival tasks.
Tight and Tough Weave
My Rattlerstrap came tightly woven and has stayed this way through nearly 8 months of daily use. AND, because of the crossing center weave... that goes from the buckle to the tail (which they call the rattle)... the belt is adjustable in about quarter inch (or 6 millimeter) increments for its entire length. So, you’ll never have to poke EXTRA holes into your belt to fit a larger or smaller waist... which is especially good for me around Christmas time... if you know what I mean.
The pin-style buckle has a matte finish and is made out of titanium (so it may go through some security check points undetected - although I have never tested this)... AND titanium is very resistant to corrosion, about as strong as stainless steel and yet around half the weight.
The belt itself is around a quarter-inch thick and has a width of around 1 1/2 inches (or 3.8 centimeters)... so it fits in most of my pants.
However, because of the thickness of the rattle end... which is nearly 1/2 inch (or 1.3 centimeter)... It can be a problem putting the belt through SOME kydex knife sheaths with narrow belt loops... Nylon and leather sheaths or Kydex-style sheaths with a belt clip are usually NOT a problem.
Comfort and Carry
Now I have found my Rattlerstrap to be the most comfortable belt that I own... so it’s become part of my EDC kit since I wear it all the time - all day - even with a pretty sizable load attached. And because the belt is adjustable in 1/4 inch increments I can easily tweak the size during the day to increase comfort... like right after a BIG meal.
To test the toughness of this belt, I wore it for the entire 40 days of recent survival training... and it held up just fine which was a good thing because I didn’t take a spare.
Let's say you HAVE to take your belt apart in an emergency or survival situation... NO worries... all you have to do is tell the folks at Rattlerstrap what happened and send them your buckle (if you still have it) and they will make you a NEW survival belt... FREE of charge. PLUS they stand by their belts with a Guarantee for Life.
Now Let's Take a Look at Owner Reviews...
The Rattlerstrap Paracord Belt has an Amazon customer review rating of 5 out of 5 stars (at the time of this review), even though this belt is a bit pricy for those on a tight budget (with a street price that usually falls between $99 to $120 US. Owners often comment on the price but in the context of how this belt is worth every penny due to its classy design, excellent craftsmanship and how well it holds up even under hard use. On the down side... the Rattlerstrap IS a bit pricey compared to some other paracord belts. So for sure, I don’t blame you if you balk at its price.
Bison Designs Belt
There are some trade-offs, but I’ve found a good alternate paracord belt for the price-sensitive. The Bison Designs Double Cobra Paracord Belt. The major differences between these 2 belts are that the Bison belt has a much smaller - square gunmetal finish buckle opposed to the rectangular titanium buckle of the Rattlerstrap. Plus the Bison Designs belt definitely has a LOT looser weave and contains 30% less paracord at about 70 feet (or 21 meters).... versus 100 feet (or around 30 meters) that is in the Rattlerstrap. You can even see around the Bison Belt buckle only 6 wraps of paracord around buckle base verse 8 wraps around the base of the Rattlerstrap buckle.
This all equates to a much tighter weave on the Rattlerstrap making it a better choice as a gear-toting tactical / survival belt. I don’t know what the guarantee policy is on the Bison Belt - or how it will hold up over time... but it seems like a pretty good belt so far and retails between $50 and $60 US at the time of this review. So if you’re looking for a good paracord belt - that you don’t have to make yourself... you’ll have to decide whether you are willing to pay a bit more for the titanium buckle, more paracord, a sturdier belt AND the lifetime guarantee that comes with the Rattlerstrap. If you’re looking for more of a tactical or gun belt - check out the Blackhawk Instructor’s Gun Belt... or the 5.11 Double Duty TDU Belt.
So Who’s the Rattlerstrap Paracord Survival Belt For?
The Rattlerstrap is a handsome, premium, US-made, wear-everyday, paracord survival belt (with a lifetime guarantee) that is designed for rough use - and those who want a premium strap around their waist that won’t fail to keep their pants up, when the chips are down.
Bonus Tip: Paracord is great for survival, camping and general utility tasks... BUT if you’re not totally sure why paracord is such a great survival tool to have on you at all times... see my Survival Quick Tips Video called Paracord Basics...
Additional Considerations It seems like everyone loves paracord these days... There’s a sense of accomplishment in weaving your own paracord gear AND a feeling of being prepared that comes with wearing a paracord bracelet or belt. But I’ve found that most pre-made paracord gear is made cheaply in Asia and with lower-quality paracord and components, so when I was looking for a good paracord belt last year that would survive the rigors of every day use AND survival situations... I could not ignore the fantastic nearly perfect reviews of the Rattlerstrap Paracord Survival Belt and decided to give one a try. After nearly 8 months of continuous and, at times, hard use in the field... I have NO regrets.
What is Paracord and Why is it Such a Good Survival Tool?
Well, Type 3 paracord is lightweight, yet VERY strong and has a minimum strength of 550 pounds (or about 250 kilograms). It consists of 7 inner yarns (that are often called the “GUTS”)... and each yarn is made up of 3 smaller strands)... The guts are enclosed in a braided nylon casing that is tough and resistant to wear. The beauty of paracord is that it can be used as is or pulled apart to use the individual strands and casing separately. So... with 7 inner yarns and the outer casing... a length of 10 feet of paracord... becomes 80 feet of usable cordage when pulled apart.
Bonus Tip Since improvising cordage in the field can be VERY time consuming, wearing a quality paracord belt everyday is a simple way to give yourself an advantage if things should ever go from bad to worse. Because the buckle is titanium, the belt should make it through TSA metal detectors, however I have taken mine off at check points... I usually carry on enough other gear that raises eyebrows of TSA agents... so... there’s no use making matters worse.
We’ve just taken a look at the Rattlerstrap Paracord Survival Belt. Hope it's been a help to you in evaluating how you can avail yourself of more carry-on cordage!