Yeah, I've got one of those. I dunno about the Chinese ones but the Russian ones are a pain in the arse. The chain makes unscrewing the top awkward and the whole thing bounces on a belt like a big woman on a horse... plus, you can't take the bottle out of the pouch without undoing the strap that holds it onto a belt, so you may as well bring the whole thing up to your mouth, but then it's fiddly to get back on the belt.
Can you see if your dad knows anything about this that could help me track one down, because my veshmeshok has only one external pocket and some crappy twine through a hem to tie it up, no eyelets or proper string like yours.
i meant that i will trust 30 +year old(It dates back from 1977)Russian aluminium rather than new chinese metals.
I've 'come up' with a handy way of using them,Will post some pictures later on,I short,I use the crossed straps to thread my belt through and I don;t bother buttoning it down,using the tension of the main strap and the string to secure it.
I agree,the chain is finnicky as f*ck. But remember,it differs from good design of usual russian gear as it's made so soldiers will only drink when they have time to unfasten it and have permission from the officer and not in the middle of battle.
And add to the fact that most soldiers carried alcohol in theirs.
EDIT: My phone just died so I'll whip some shizzle up in MS paint.
On the bag,It turns out it's not military issue,I've read the faded tag a bit and It's made by a sports company,in 1970s. Bloody fantastic quality though,the canvas is invincible and it can hold a massive amount of stuff. It's veshmeshok based though.
Found it on etsy: http://www.etsy.com/...-rucksack-large
EDIT EDIT: sh*tty MS paint pictures! All of this is assuming the chain is removed,I'm going to replace it with some paracord. The chain kind of ruins this whole method.
You might already do this though :F