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d-r
11-09-2011, 8:49 AM
Ok, lots of folks have requested I repost this here, so here ya go. It is an overview of body armor MATERIALS, rather than specific manufacturers. I have been designing and building armor for more than 14 years, so have a fair amount of experience creating and destroying all sorts of bullet stopping goodies. If you have any questions, please let me know. If I don't have the answer, I will tell you so, and see if I can get it for you. I am not the ultimate expert on this, just have a strong fondness (my wife calls it something else) for armor.

If you are interested in even more details, review, tests, etc, check out my new armor blog at: http://www/drmorgear.wordpress.com

Just some recommendations (and this goes for any armor you buy, new or used):

Avoid Spectrashield, Spectra woven, or Dyneema: This material is based on polyethylene, the same stuff that milk jugs are made of. The armor version is referred to as Ultra High Molecular Weight Poly-Ethylene (UHMWPE). In situations where it gets hot (and most car trunks in the summer can get HOT), it will denature, reverting back to simple milk jug plastic. Armoring FAIL. I used to be a fan of this stuff until I read some great info by Kevin "Mad Dog" Mclung and Doctor Roberts ("DocGKR"), two names that you should look up and listen to. They did some eye opening tests (especially Mad Dog) on the dangers of Spectra. If the material goes over 180 F, it becomes a danger to its wearer.

Avoid Laminates: Something else both of these gentlemen strongly advise against. Laminated armor materials have huge drawbacks (Spectra laminates more so). They suck against contact shots (the muzzle blast literally melts them, allowing rounds to go right through), they delaminate with wear, they don't breathe (try wrapping yourself in saran wrap- that's how comfy they are), and they don't have anywhere near the shelf life of woven kevlar (which is practically immortal as far as I have seen). Steer clear of laminates:

Spectrashield contact shot- massive penetration:
http://www.itstactical.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/04/spectrashieldpb-150x150.jpg

Spectrashield vs. Woven Kevlar BALCS panels contact shots- Spectrashield, massive penetration, with one shot .44 Mag, Woven Kevlar took 9 rounds before penetration:
http://www.itstactical.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/04/34066-pbalcs44mag_contact-150x150.jpg

Spectrashield contact shot- massive penetration
http://www.itstactical.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/04/spectra_contact_exit-150x150.jpg

Woven Kevlar Contact Shot- No penetration:
http://www.itstactical.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/04/kevlar_contact_exit-150x150.jpg

PHOTOS COURTESY ITS TACTICAL

AVOID ZYLON: For the love of everything that is holy. There was an amendment passed in congress outlawing this stuff for pete's sake. It was supposed to be the next great armor material, and lots of manufacturers jumped on it. Trouble is, combine heat with humidity (um, your body?) and the material degraded rapidly. This lead directly to the deaths of at least two police officers, and Zylon was (after much foot dragging) pulled. Don't ever use it.

THINGS TO LOOK FOR IN SURPLUS ARMOR TO AVOID THE ZYLON BLUES:

POINT BLANK FUSION (ZYLON AND SPECTRASHIELD)http://www.us-elitegear.com/fusion.htm
Z-SHIELD (A ZYLON LAMINATE, YECCCH!)
Z-FLEX (SAME AS ABOVE)
THERE ARE MORE, BUT THIS IS A START.

If the label does not say, and the seller cannot/will not swear to it, assume any surplus armor contains laminates, Zylon, or both. Zylon containing vests were universally deep-sixed after the Berry Amendment, and could be rooted out of dumpsters. These are appearing on Fleabay and forums (Currently there are Zylon containing vests in the Equipment Exchange), being sold to unsuspecting buyers. ASK, ASK, ASK, and if you get a song and dance, walk away. Your life is much too precious to risk anything but woven Kevlar.

Pretty muchly that leaves woven aramid as the last man standing. This stuff is, as always, a great material. It is tough, fireproof (it will char but not melt at above 700 F) and will retain most of its ballistic effectiveness even after reaching this temp. Being woven, it breathes better. Contact shots have a much harder time getting through. It lasts virtually forever- the 5-7 year warranty is not there to tell you when it goes bad. Nominally, it is just there as a CYA measure by the companies to limit liability. In one test, it was actually shown that older vests did BETTER than new vests at stopping rounds. Weird, I know. Here are two references:

“NIJ tests failed to demonstrate any significant differences in 10-year-old armor, regardless of the extent of use or apparent physical condition”

“The warranty exists solely to limit the manufacturer's liability on the product and is not a reflection of the anticipated service life of the product.”

...Guide to Police Body Armor, National Law Enforcement and Corrections Technology Center (NLECTC)

You can also find an abstract here:

https://www.ncjrs.gov/pdffiles1/Digitization/111390NCJRS.pdf

So kevlar, kevlar, kevlar. Woven, not laminated. ;)

Regarding plates, Doc is on the right track. Rifle armor is important, as soft armor is completely useless against rifle rounds. M193 will go through about 120-140 layers of soft armor with enough zip left to seriously ruin your weekend. Believe me, I have checked.

Jpanzer- Just to reiterate, soft armor cannot be level III. Max rating is IIIA. And don't assume, get the specs, or better yet, test it yourself!

Rifle armor is rated either level III or IV. Now, the interesting thing is, the higher rating is not necessarily better. If you expect to be facing enemies with AP capability, the IV is nice to have (the spec calls for the plate to stop ONE round of .30-06 M2 AP black tip. One round). If you are expecting normal mild steel or lead cored, go with III by all means. The spec for III calls for stopping 6 rounds of M80 .308 ball @ 2750FPS within a 6" circle. So much better multi hit. Always read the specs!

Then there is the question whether the plate is designed to stand alone, or be worn with soft armor behind it ("In Conjunction With"). The stand alone plates tend to be heavier, as they typically have much thicker backings. This is nice if you are wearing just the plates and nothing else, but usually you have some sort of soft armor on, so the ICW are usually a better bet. Plus, just me, I like having extra padding. But if you like mobility, then stand alones might be for you.

Materials for rifle armor usually focus on hard stuff- soft armor defeats pistol rounds by catching, slowing, and deforming them. They are low velocity (relatively) with a fairly large frontal area. Rifle rounds are fast, with a small, pointed frontal area. The defeat mechanism is yawing, deforming, eroding, shattering, and frictive braking (the last one is unusual).

Steel- Tried and true, this material is great for stopping rounds (millions of steel targets can't all be wrong). It stops by deforming rounds. It can keep stopping them as long as the structure is uncompromised. Heat and mistreatment do not affect it. Drawbacks- it is heavy for its protective levels, it can rust if you chip the paint, and it splatters. Splatter is the reason most steel target manufacturers recommend being 50-100 yards from the target. When a round hits, it splashes little bits of copper and lead in a cone at an angle. If you are wearing one of these plates, that high velocity splash can end up in your throat and face. Make sure if you run steel plates you wear spall guards in FRONT of the plates. Just a few layers of kevlar are all that is needed.

UPDATE 5-28-2015- A company called Armor Wear has just released steel plates made with Ultra-Hard Steel ("UHS") which WILL stop M193 at 3000fps and above. I now consider this material best practices, with Mil HHS the bare minimum.

****Material choices: BEST is UHS (Ultra-Hard Steel/AR680) next best is Mil-Spec HHS (High Hardness Steel), offered by Armor-Wear and Maingun Surplus respectively****

AR500 (Abrasion Resistant, 500 Brinell Hardness) IS NO LONGER RECOMMENDED!

*UPDATED 5-28-2015*

A quick and dirty rule of thumb for stopping the M193 threat with steel plate: 500 bhn (Brinell Hardness) needs to be 10mm thick at 3100 fps to stop M193, 600 bhn needs to be 6mm, and at 58-63 Rc (Rockwell C), the plate can be made 4.5mm thick.

Titanium- Ahhh, Titanium. The very word brings to mind a supermetal that can do everything. More misconceptions surround this metal than just about any other. While true, it does make superior armor in some regards, it is not a panacea. Ti has been used for several decades in the construction of advanced airframes (the A-12 was over 60% Ti, a strategic metal mostly found in Russia...). Its claims to fame are: lightweight (60% the weight of steel @ comparable strengths) and corrosion resistance. It is virtually impervious to corrosion (ironically, because it oxidizes so quickly, forming a tough layer of TiO2). It cannot be hardened appreciably above the high 40s low 50s Rockwell C, and even that requires exotic precipitation hardening Beta alloys. The most common alloy in use is referred to as 6-4, which is short for 6Al4V (6 points of Aluminum and 4 points of Vanadium). Ti is a fairly tough metal, which makes it a good choice for armor plates for AFVs and APCs in thick section (I don't have the TE numbers compared to RHA in front of me right now, but they are pretty good). In soft armor vests, Ti plates are sought after as trauma plates vs. steel because they are lighter and do not rust. In sufficient thickness (2-3mm) they will stop all handgun rounds, up to and including some AP like the steel cored Tok rounds that play merry hob with most soft armor.
For rifle armor, Ti falls short- it is not hard enough to shatter high velocity rifle rounds (see above re: hardness). This is where the TE (thickness equivalency) comes into play. Ti can stop rifle rounds, even larger caliber cannon fire, but in thicknesses and weights that are prohibitive to us groundpounders. My research has shown M80 will be stopped by a 14mm thick plate of 6-4 backed by 4mm of Aramid. Most steel plates are between 4.5mm and 6mm depending on backing. There have been some hybrid steel/Ti plates, but at that point, you might as well just go all steel. Choose the right material for the job- for pistol rounds, Ti is a champ. For rifles, look elsewhere.

Ceramic- This material encompasses several types of ceramic. The most common is Alumina, also known as Aluminum Oxide or Al2O3. It is very hard (upwards of 9 on the Moh's hardness scale), fairly light, inert, and not TOO expensive. It stops projectiles by erosion, shattering, and yawing. It is almost never used alone, relying on a backing to keep the high velocity rubble and projectile fragments from continuing into your body cavity. It is great against lots of rifle rounds, and can be made proof against some AP rounds. It is insensitive to heat and water. Drawbacks- more expensive than steel, can be sensitive to mishandling (think cracked plates if you toss them in your gear bag). Other ceramics include Silicon Carbide and Boron Carbide (more expensive and VERY expensive respectively). These are lighter and harder materials, and can stop the very highest of threats (tungsten carbide cored AP for instance). Most level IV plates are B4C.

Spectra- Wait, didn't I just say don't use this? Yes, yes I did. I am including this here for information purposes, and also because it is a gray area. Spectra in hard armor is not as HUGE a danger as soft armor (this from DocGKR) because of the amount of heat required to get it isothermic (the same temp throughout). So, if you have Spectra hardplates, there you go. Standalone Spectra plates can stop rifle rounds with enough layers. It stops rounds via frictive braking (think of bullet brake). However, be advised there are some rounds that will penetrate UHMWPE plates, such as M855 green tip. So again, do your homework. AN EXAMPLE IS FOUND HERE:

http://www.m4carbine.net/archive/index.php/t-32839.html

GREEN TIP M855 IS NOT IN THE SPEC FOR LEVEL III, SO DON'T ASSUME.

problemchild
11-09-2011, 10:03 AM
"armor is one of those things that should be in everyone's kit bag."

I have mixed feelings about armor. If Im getting shot at and get hit in the hand and there is no medical attention available I'll probably die of infection or bleeding. If I get hit in the leg same thing as before. If I get hit in the arm also same thing.

My feeling is best to not get into a fight or avoid one at ALL costs. But if you are getting shot at and you are lucky enough to have soft vests and hard plates and the magic bullets hits that plate then its your lucky day. If the shooter has AP 308 then its game over probably.

So my question is do I spend $2,000 dollars on something that protects half my body?

Great write up and thanks for the info.

NoHeavyHitter
11-09-2011, 11:56 AM
Thanks for taking the time to share this information.

Peachdog
11-09-2011, 6:32 PM
Maybe throw in some advice about the ability for it to be concealed. My current rig is low profile and manages to fit under a thin hoody or jacket without being noticed and it is a lvl 3a vest with lvl 3 ti-steel plates. If I was standing guard or stuck in a static location where mobility wasn't possible then being able to deceive the enemy into an easier torso shot would give me the advantage.

Avoid the $2000 tactical rigs like the military or swat wears and just get a simple lvl3a soft armor vest and carrier for under $700 with some plates. Or even cheaper: Buy just plates and a plate carrier.

-The steel and ti-steel alloy plates are great for the fact that they can be abused and thrown around until shtf when you will not have to worry about their effectiveness. They can be had relatively cheap if you shop around for them about $120 per 10x12 plate. Downsides are weight and lack of lvl4 protection. Spalling is not as much of an issue with lower end projectiles if you've got it in a thick carrier with gear on top, but the high powered rifle rounds might be cause to get an actual liner.

-Ceramic is lighter, more effective at absorbing impacts, and come in lvl4 variety, but they are prone to fractures with rough handling which is why we constantly rotate through ours in the military. They have to be held up to xrays just to check if they're still ready for combat. Also, they are thicker than the metal plates and harder to be contoured to body shapes which is a negative to concealment. I normally see these go for around $200 per plate when it comes to lvl 3.

-The Spectra/UHWMPE are nice and very lightweight compared to the other types of plates. But as was stated earlier only go up to lvl3 protection and are fairly bulky and expensive. The M855 part doesn't sound truthful to me though. If it rated to an NIJ level then it's likely the same protection.


The best thing you can do if you want to wear body armor is to train in it and get used to how it feels to shoot while wearing it. But body armor is great for peace of mind and knowing that you stand a better chance of recovering from stray rounds and multiple up close sub-rifle calibers. Also, I found this exact same piece posted in the AK Files Forums. Don't know if you're the writer for both.

guncollector
11-09-2011, 6:59 PM
So my question is do I spend $2,000 dollars on something that protects half my body?

Not trying to convince you one way or another, but you can procure a more-than-adequate soft+hard armor kit for much less than $2,000.00:

$250.00 Mayflower Low-Pro Armor Carrier, Concealment Cut (New)
$330.00 MSA Paraclete K3K3A IIIA Soft Armor, Concealment Cut (New)
$300.00 Gamma III+ Rifle Plates (New) <--DocGKR recommended!
---------
$880.00 total

Just sayin'. ;)

mindwip
11-09-2011, 7:11 PM
BulletProofME has used armour/never issued etc at really good prices. I would much rather have 1 gun and armour then 2 guns and no armour. 50% coverage for the price of a cheap handgun is worth it.

DannyInSoCal
11-09-2011, 7:34 PM
What is your opinion of these:

http://www.calguns.net/calgunforum/showthread.php?t=493915

I already bought one - Something is better than nothing - Should I upgrade it...?

Thanx....

Darklyte27
11-09-2011, 8:00 PM
BPme, front and back level IV rifle plates, 490$ shipped for me.
ceramic, claimed to stop multi hit 3006 AP rds.

erik18
11-09-2011, 11:40 PM
Where is a good place to pick up the gamma III plates?
Also, what do you think about the protech special threat plate?
http://www.protechtactical.com/pc-112-29-impac-ht-special-threat-plates.aspx

d-r
11-10-2011, 9:39 AM
Guns4LIfe: Best way to find out is either ask the seller, or do some research. Most of the time they will say, and if they don't best assume it is a laminate.

Danny, just PM'd you, not good news unfortunately- vest contains Zylon and Spectrashield (See below RE: POINT BLANK FUSION)

Remember folks, there are still ZYLON vests out there, and I would not use them as oven mitts if they were given to me free. Woven Kevlar or go home. Words to look for and avoid:

POINT BLANK FUSION (Zylon and Spectrashield laminate)
Z-Shield (Zylon Laminate (YECCCH!)
Z-Flex (See above)

This is a big reason I posted the above. There are lots of Zylon containing vests floating around out there that cannot be used/sold to/by MIL/LEO, so are deep sixed. These can be picked up for virtually nothing and sold on Fleabay or boards like this one to unsuspecting people.

If you are purchasing used armor, don't let up on the seller- MAKE SURE it is 100% woven Kevlar/Twaron Aramid. Don't buy the song and dance that "oh, laminates are just fine, they are used by Seal Team X, blah blah blah." LAMINATES ARE CRAP.

You can (if you have access to the ballistic package interior) LOOK, woven Kevlar/Twaron Aramid looks like yellow fabric. There should be NO plastic (looks like plastic wrap) or white shiny material (UHMWPE based material). Heck, if you need a reference, send me a post paid envelope and I WILL SEND YOU A SAMPLE OF THE MATERIAL YOU WANT TO SEE.

I am doing this to keep folks safe, and anything I can do to help. Please PM me with questions, I will answer any questions I can, and if I don't know, I will tell you so.

Oh, and Peachdog- yup, that is me. ;) Thanks for your reply, PM incoming.

d-r
11-10-2011, 10:25 AM
Best place currently to get TAP GAMMAs:

http://www.ebay.com/itm/2-NEW-10x12-ESAPI-PLATES-LEVEL-III-BODY-ARMOR-FREE-S-H-/160660222920?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item25681873c8

No connection to seller, just like to point folks in the right direction.

Link to a good post showing how M855 and pure UHMWPE plates may be unhealthy:

http://www.m4carbine.net/archive/index.php/t-32839.html

Name of the poster should be familiar to y'all by this point! ;)

d-r
11-10-2011, 5:41 PM
ZYLON INFO DUMP!

There are vests currently being sold surplus on Ebay and boards that contain Zylon. Look for and AVOID the following:

POINT BLANK FUSION (ZYLON AND SPECTRASHIELD)http://www.us-elitegear.com/fusion.htm
Z-FLEX (ZYLON LAMINATE-YEEECH)
Z-SHIELD (SAME AS ABOVE)

These are a few, and I will add some more, but be on the lookout. If you can't get the seller to tell you what the vest is made of, walk away. Below are some links about Zylon and its dangers:

http://www.signonsandiego.com/uniontrib/20050825/news_1n25vests.html

http://www.usarmor.com/zylonnews.htm

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1470175/posts

http://www.24-7-news.com/archives/434

http://tacticalforums.com/ubb/Forum1/HTML/001190-2.html

As usual, if you have any questions, please ask. Stay safe.

D-R

RIFLE PLATE RECOMMENDATIONS:

So far, only three that I would wear currently (and have worn in two cases):

Armored Mobility Hybrid Level III+ (Top choice by a fair margin)

TAP GAMMA Level III

DBT Level III Steel Operator Cut

YMMV, just my 2 Kroner.

Here is DocGKR's infodump on laminates and contact shots, COURTESY OF ITS TACTICAL (No connection with them):

http://www.itstactical.com/gearcom/body-armor/soft-body-armor/

d-r
11-23-2011, 2:23 PM
HK is correct- body armor can't hurt and will probably help. At the very least, it will have tremendous trade value. Look at the value of a maille shirt in the middle ages...

d-r
12-01-2011, 10:52 AM
Care of woven Kevlar- Since this has come up a lot, here are my recommendations:

The enemies of woven Kevlar are two- sun exposure (strong, chronic exposure to UV light) and bacteria/fungus. The best way to protect against the former is don't go sunning in your bare armor panels. Keep them inside the carrier, or at the very least in their protective fabric outer sheath. For the latter, every once in a while, soak the armor panels in a weak solution of baking soda. This will kill the fungus, and neutralize any acids produced by sweat eating bacteria. You can then follow up with a very mild dish soap solution, then rinse again and let dry. This will keep your armor practically immortal. DO NOT put your armor in the dryer, and DO NOT use harsh chemical cleaners on it. Just baking soda and a little dish/bar soap is all you need.

HTH

D-R

Lugiahua
06-16-2012, 10:56 AM
awhile ago, someone in another thread claimed that it is illegal to use hard plate along with a soft armor. (like IV plate insert in a IIIA armor)

I would like to know if that is true? not planning to break the law unintentionally.

Librarian
06-16-2012, 1:13 PM
awhile ago, someone in another thread claimed that it is illegal to use hard plate along with a soft armor. (like IV plate insert in a IIIA armor)

I would like to know if that is true? not planning to break the law unintentionally.

No, not true.

'Body armor' is defined at PC 16288 16288.
As used in Section 31360, “body armor” means any bullet-resistant material intended to provide ballistic and trauma protection for the person wearing the body armor.No distinction is made for plates vs fabric.

Felons may not own or possess body armor 31360.
(a) A person who has been convicted of a violent felony under the laws of the United States, the State of California, or any other state, government, or country, who purchases, owns, or possesses body armor, as defined in Section 16288, except as authorized under subdivision (b), is guilty of a felony, punishable by imprisonment pursuant to subdivision (h) of Section 1170 for 16 months, or two or three years.

There's also a sentencing enhancement for committing a violent crime while wearing a 'body vest', PC 12022.2 (b) Any person who wears a body vest in the commission or
attempted commission of a violent offense, as defined in Section
29905, shall, upon conviction of that felony or attempted felony, in
addition and consecutive to the punishment prescribed for the felony
or attempted felony of which he or she has been convicted, be
punished by an additional term of one, two, or five years. The court
shall order the middle term unless there are circumstances in
aggravation or mitigation. The court shall state the reasons for its
enhancement choice on the record at the time of the sentence.
(c) As used in this section, "body vest" means any
bullet-resistant material intended to provide ballistic and trauma
protection for the wearer.
That's it - no other restriction in California law regarding ownership, possession or use of body armor.

d-r
06-16-2012, 6:34 PM
Librarian, thank you for that. I believe no states currently forbid the possession of armor, but CT and NJ (the second IIRC) require credentials to purchase new armor.

Lugiahua
06-18-2012, 1:13 PM
Thanks, that comment got me worried since I use hard inserts when attending rifle range sometimes.

Darklyte27
06-18-2012, 4:03 PM
IF any state did, it would be CA first i bet, but I just got some 6 months ago and its good to go.

mdib870
06-21-2012, 8:18 PM
Anyone know about ar500 level 3 steel plates

d-r
06-23-2012, 9:03 AM
RE: Ar500 Level 3 Plates- These are GTG, DBT and AMI both make/made these. There was a bit of an uproar about M193 @ over 3100 fps penetrating them, but remember, M193 is NOT in the spec for Level III! Always know and understand the spec.

I will not run steel plates without a spall guard in front of the plate though.

eclark
06-28-2012, 12:24 PM
What exactly does the date mean on my vest? Do they expire?

d-r
06-28-2012, 11:09 PM
What exactly does the date mean on my vest? Do they expire?

Eclark-

That is the born on date. While vest manufacturers put a "shelf life" on vests, if it is a woven Kevlar vest, it should remain viable for at least 25-30 years if taken care of. There was actually a study done that found older armor performed *better* than new armor. The 5 year warranty is pretty much just a CYA measure. This does not apply to laminate or zylon vests.

bob7122
06-28-2012, 11:35 PM
Care of woven Kevlar- Since this has come up a lot, here are my recommendations:

The enemies of woven Kevlar are two- sun exposure (strong, chronic exposure to UV light) and bacteria/fungus. The best way to protect against the former is don't go sunning in your bare armor panels. Keep them inside the carrier, or at the very least in their protective fabric outer sheath. For the latter, every once in a while, soak the armor panels in a weak solution of baking soda. This will kill the fungus, and neutralize any acids produced by sweat eating bacteria. You can then follow up with a very mild dish soap solution, then rinse again and let dry. This will keep your armor practically immortal. DO NOT put your armor in the dryer, and DO NOT use harsh chemical cleaners on it. Just baking soda and a little dish/bar soap is all you need.

HTH

D-R

can i use lysol spray on my vest? for the baking soda should i dilute it in water say,-1/3 cup of baking soda to 2cups water? would it be okay to wear under armour and then my vest? thanks in advance.

Librarian
06-29-2012, 12:55 AM
can i use lysol spray on my vest? for the baking soda should i dilute it in water say,-1/3 cup of baking soda to 2cups water? would it be okay to wear under armour and then my vest? thanks in advance.

The technical guide to Kevlar - http://www2.dupont.com/Kevlar/en_US/assets/downloads/KEVLAR_Technical_Guide.pdf - says alcohol has no effect - see page 11 and following.

bob7122
06-29-2012, 6:19 PM
thank you sir.

gtturborex
07-27-2012, 8:15 PM
I have the chance to purchase this RBR Flex 35 from a friend. Does this look like a good piece? Sorry I'm new to this stuff.

http://i149.photobucket.com/albums/s78/gtturborex/armor.jpg

gtturborex
08-01-2012, 8:51 PM
Anyone?

mindwip
08-02-2012, 1:34 PM
Looks like it is held sideways. Do not wear next to the body like such.

Bobbar
08-03-2012, 6:10 PM
D-r pm sent!!!

IceMinus
08-18-2012, 11:40 PM
discreet body armor made for executives.takes a 40 s&w at point blank range with no penetration. and this body armor also has secondary uses making it almost undetectable. Laptop cases, binders what have you

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jNjpXHwScvs

gtturborex
08-20-2012, 7:49 AM
Looks like it is held sideways. Do not wear next to the body like such.

I thought as long as I held my gat sideways that it was ok to wear the armor saideways as well:p

deckhandmike
09-06-2012, 9:05 PM
Anyone got a lead on a place to apply the proper linex spall guard onto steel that civilians can go through?

dubmasterdee
09-12-2012, 4:41 PM
have anyone own or know someone that owns this?

http://www.ebay.com/itm/level-NIJ0101-06-IIIA-Concealable-Covert-Bulletproof-Vest-/160880757096?_trksid=p5197.m1992&_trkparms=aid%3D111000%26algo%3DREC.CURRENT%26ao%3 D1%26asc%3D14%26meid%3D2003436739911791305%26pid%3 D100015%26prg%3D1006%26rk%3D1%26


it is by this company called compass armor. their website didn't give much information, but just claims it's a NIJ threat level 3 vest. it is a chinese made product, i wonder if this can save my life one day. give me your opinions thanks.

d-r
09-16-2012, 10:09 AM
I tend to avoid any personal protective gear made in China. And if they are claiming the vest is level 3, all the more reason to run the other way. Highest rating soft armor can achieve is 3A.

ETA: It is claiming level 3A, not 3. Remember, 3 is rigid armor for rifle rounds. The (A) is important. Still, they do not specify material, so assume it is laminates.

sleepr66
10-03-2012, 2:33 PM
I am going to buy steel but there is one major drawbak that has also not been mentioned. An otherwise non-fatal shot can be turned into a fatal one. Say you get shot in the side, a simple through-and-through (I say that like its a piece of cake). Upon exiting your body it strikes the inside of you steel plate and ricochets back into you. Would be a bummer to get shot twice with one bullet.

However I like the pros of steel, maybe down the road I will get some nice stand-alones. But for SHTF, I like the idea of being able to take many rounds (which hardened steel can do) and not have to worry about shelf life.

RudyCakes
10-03-2012, 6:15 PM
Where can one get spall guards? I used google and found ways to DIY and a few home workshop sellers but I'd like such an important item to be from a reputable source. I plan on running AR-500 plates.

RudyCakes
10-03-2012, 6:50 PM
And what do you think of just getting a Paxcon coating applied to the strike face instead?

LCU1670
10-03-2012, 7:59 PM
BulletProofME has used armour/never issued etc at really good prices. I would much rather have 1 gun and armour then 2 guns and no armour. 50% coverage for the price of a cheap handgun is worth it.

My wife and I got two surplus units from them, $210.00 each, great price, like new, and Tim made sure we got a perfect fit! I highly recommed this place!

EL_NinO619
10-10-2012, 1:12 PM
http://www.internationalbodyarmor.com/ex/new_pages/st_plates/

Any good, Looking at the 8x10 I believe LGS has them for $300 a set? Actually 10x12 with front badge 1-2 item on list.

TacticalPlinker
10-11-2012, 4:21 AM
Does anyone know where I can buy 10" x 12" armor "plates" (non-ballistic) for the purpose of training and to serve as a substitute when actual plates are not needed (storage/range) but you don't want your plate carrier to be "floppy" or "bunch up"?

I found these at Tactical Assault Gear...
http://www.tacticalassaultgearstore.com/teamwendyesapinon-ballistictrainingchestplateset.aspx

I'm looking for something exactly like those, but without the weight and without the cost!

badreligion
10-11-2012, 5:14 AM
Have you looked at what the air soft stores have? Airsoft Extreme had them for $25 a plate but they are out of stock right now. Doesn't mean other stores don't have them.

TacticalPlinker
10-11-2012, 7:44 AM
Have you looked at what the air soft stores have? Airsoft Extreme had them for $25 a plate but they are out of stock right now. Doesn't mean other stores don't have them.

That's a damn good idea. My favorite local shop carries air soft gear. Now that I think of it, I may of indeed seen something there. I'll try and stop by today. If they don't have something, I'll try online, maybe Evike.

I ordered a Shellback/TAG banshee plate carrier from SKD, and I can't afford plates for awhile... plus I don't really want to wear them in the carrier for "casual" training/range use.

I've seen people make their own from cardboard but I think that's a bit too ghetto for me.

badreligion
10-14-2012, 9:41 PM
Some plate carriers don't require plates to be inserted to work as a stand alone chest rig. You can probably adjust the rig to work without the plates and then readjust once you have plates in the carrier. I understand the desire to make the rig fit properly as if you had real plates but for the cost of fake plates you could probably buy one of the less expensive real plates on eBay.
I haven't worn plates for several years now even though I have several carriers that allow plates to be worn. I will be buying several sets of plates to fill out those rigs as I am getting into more non static training. In my expriance the more you wear a properly adjusted rig with plates in it you quickly forget that they are in it. The old motto of train like you fight is true for everything you do in a training cycle your equipment is no different.

EL_NinO619
10-18-2012, 6:46 PM
Just got a carrier. I don't know anything about plates but my idea is to take some courses. I don't honestly or ever hope I will have to wear these in a real fight, but you never know. I am battling between ceramic or steel. I think I want stand alone and want to pay somewhere between 3-400 dollars. Any ideas or help would be great. Thanks

http://i893.photobucket.com/albums/ac135/Justin_Moreau/plate1.jpg

briguy64
10-20-2012, 2:13 AM
http://www.armordesigns.com/products-standalone.html

Anyone have experience with these plates?

Darklyte27
12-03-2012, 9:05 PM
found some useful info on the NIJ standards

http://granitestatepolicesupply.com/NIJ-Standards/

Sub-Moa
12-05-2012, 6:37 PM
http://www.armordesigns.com/products-standalone.html

Anyone have experience with these plates?


Wow! 3.2 pounds isn't bad for Level III. I would be curious to see how that proprietary curve would feel in a PC as well.

Sub-Moa
12-05-2012, 6:43 PM
Does anyone know where I can buy 10" x 12" armor "plates" (non-ballistic) for the purpose of training and to serve as a substitute when actual plates are not needed (storage/range) but you don't want your plate carrier to be "floppy" or "bunch up"?

I found these at Tactical Assault Gear...
http://www.tacticalassaultgearstore.com/teamwendyesapinon-ballistictrainingchestplateset.aspx

I'm looking for something exactly like those, but without the weight and without the cost!


You can always make your own plates by cutting out layers of cardboard and using polyester resin to make a replica of your real plates. You could even manipulate the overall weight and dimensions to be the same. I would recommend inlaying "Training" into the resin so people won't think they are real. I have not done this myself. Only issue I can see is how well the cardboard would soak up the resin. May take a couple times to get it right.

lincoln45
12-09-2012, 7:54 PM
anyone try these guys?

http://www.safeguardclothing.com/covert-overt-body-armor/covert-overt-iiia-bullet-stab-spike-proof-vest/

d-r
12-09-2012, 8:05 PM
Make sure it is 100% WOVEN Kevlar. Does not stipulate in the ad.

Topgun863
01-21-2013, 9:18 PM
Can you suggest some manufacturers of vests/soft armor that can also be used as plate carriers so I can get some ideas of what to look for? I'd like to eventually have level III armor (maybe even level IV). I saw the link that was posted for what plates to get, but I'm not really sure where to look for the soft armor/carrier.

d-r
01-21-2013, 10:31 PM
My current top 4 recommendations for plate carriers, priced from high to low:

SKD Pig ~$320

TAG Banshee ~$135 (CAN NO LONGER RECOMMEND IF YOU NEED TO WEAR SIDE HARD ARMOR- CUMMERBUND DOES NOT ACCEPT 6" TALL PLATES)

Beez Combat Systems Slick ~ $70-$90

NEW BEST/LEAST EXPENSIVE- CONDOR Plate Carrier $69-100

Unless you are facing a certain threat of AP rounds, stick with level III hard armor. Level IV spec is *1 ROUND* of M2 AP, and no promise or guarantee that it will stop a moth fart after that.

The four recommended carriers come without soft or hard armor. The only carrier that I currently am aware of (and there may be others that I am not) is the Eagle CIRAS, with sewn-in level IIIA armor. The above carriers all utilize standard 10X12 or 11X14 soft armor backers, in what is called "shooters cut." This is a rectangle with the upper corners clipped to allow a rifles stock to be comfortably shouldered. They are all compatible with side armor, both hard and soft, through the use of cummerbunds and plate pockets.

Topgun863
01-21-2013, 10:50 PM
My current top 3 recommendations for plate carriers, priced from high to low:

SKD Pig ~$320

TAG Banshee ~$135

Beez Combat Systems Slick ~ $70-$90

Unless you are facing a certain threat of AP rounds, stick with level III hard armor. Level IV spec is *1 ROUND* of M2 AP, and no promise or guarantee that it will stop a moth fart after that.

The three recommended carriers come without soft or hard armor. The only carrier that I currently am aware of (and there may be others that I am not) is the Eagle CIRAS, with sewn-in level IIIA armor. The above carriers all utilize standard 10X12 or 11X14 soft armor backers, in what is called "shooters cut." This is a rectangle with the upper corners clipped to allow a rifles stock to be comfortably shouldered. They are all compatible with side armor, both hard and soft, through the use of cummerbunds and plate pockets.


Thanks, I'll take a look at those.

I guess I misunderstood. I thought you were able to get level IIIA armor that was also a carrier. So most armor you just buy a carrier and then you can use either soft armor inserts or plates? I thought/understood it as you use the ICW plates with soft armor. I'm fairly new to this but would like to look into it. Are the carriers you mentioned capable of stopping spalls? Please excuse my ignorance.

Edit: have you heard of Diamondback Tactical? https://www.diamondbacktactical.com/products/carriers/tactical-carriers/ Just curious as I came across it in my limited bit of searching.

d-r
01-22-2013, 11:53 AM
You CAN get full-up soft armor that also will take plates, but it is more a function of the carrier than the armor. The armor package is generally removable, and the carrier is usually either covert (concealable) or overt (designed to carry gear, mags, etc.). You can often use the same soft armor package in both types. Most plate carriers (overt or covert) can be used without plates when you want less weight.

Regarding spall, the carriers on their own will stop about 40-50% of the spalling from plate strikes, but they will be ripped to shreds and so will your face/throat. For a video of what a carrier looks like from just two rounds worth of spalling, please send me an IM with your email address. I strongly encourage the use of spall guards, either using surplus kevlar panels in front of the plate, or my custom made guards.

DBT makes great gear. They also have excellent concealable carriers. Be aware that their armor packages do contain laminates.

quiksilvern7
02-06-2013, 8:02 PM
http://strikeindustries.com/shop/index.php/tactical-gear/aegis-ii/aegis-2.html

anyone tried these or have any opinions on this setup? thanks!

d-r
02-07-2013, 11:07 AM
These are ok, biggest issue is the snag factor on the front wings of the cummerbund.

Delta Bravo
02-07-2013, 7:48 PM
Anyone have thoughts comments on Paraclete armor/plate rigs? Heard a lot of the ex-SF contractors were/are using them in Stan.... ??

d-r
02-08-2013, 6:46 PM
Their nylon is *really nice*. I recommend checking the armor packages they make before purchase, as only 1/3 of the ones they offer are 100% woven P-Aramid. Those are GTG.

d-r
02-11-2013, 1:21 PM
A NOTE ON SPALL: Spall is defined as fragments resulting from an impact. When discussing rifle plates, spall is a major concern in all except UHMWPE. When a round strikes a hard face plate, it usually will come apart. spraying lead and jacket fragments in a conoid trajectory (like a drop of water hitting the ground). This will spray fragments parallel to the surface of the plate, including up and into your face and throat. To mitigate spall, it is advised you run spall guards. Tests have shown that layering (BUT NOT GLUEING) 5-10 layers of woven Kevlar to the surface of the plate can be moderately effective. Special forms of Kevlar are even more effective, stopping the majority of spalling with a single layer. Applying coatings such as Line-X and Rhino Lining can also be effective, but require much thicker layers, and after about 5 rounds are rendered ineffective. The advantage of steel plates is their thin profile and multi-hit capacity, so coatings are a stopgap at best. Engineered spall guards are optimal, as they can be replaced easily, continue to be effective after multiple hits, and keep the plate profile thin, as it should be.

*NEW INFORMATION ADDED*Super Bainite Steel- This is a new twist on an old material. Bainite steel is a form of crystalline structure that steel forms when processed in a special way. It is EXTREMELY tough, consisting of iron particles in a carbon matrix. While being very hard, it is tough enough to resist shattering like glass, which is what happens when steel is hardened past a certain point. Currently, it is the only way to get level IV (AP) multi-hit protection out of a steel plate. The only source I know of right now is ebay (look up flashbainite). All the other advice about steel plates apply.

downrange1
02-14-2013, 9:47 PM
Lots of good info here. Check out Amendment II and US Armor.
http://www.usarmor.com/
http://tinyurl.com/d5reaou

1snakedoc
02-24-2013, 7:26 PM
what is the best placement for the plates? high low?
im 6' 1" 220lbs but have short legs 32", so my torso is long and big.
how high or low should it be worn?

American Standard
02-24-2013, 9:08 PM
Good info about plates and protection levels.

Is there anyplace that will allow me to try on, or should I just have my measurements ready when ordering?

d-r
02-24-2013, 10:37 PM
1Snakedoc- The higher the better. You want the top of the plate to reach your sternal notch.

American Standard- For plates and carriers, they tend to run either one size fits all, or S, M, L. Usually if you supply your measurements that will be sufficient.

1snakedoc
02-25-2013, 6:40 AM
1Snakedoc- The higher the better. You want the top of the plate to reach your sternal notch.

American Standard- For plates and carriers, they tend to run either one size fits all, or S, M, L. Usually if you supply your measurements that will be sufficient.

i did not know it should be that high, that leaves a lot of me naked on the lower side. not sure what to do about that?

d-r
02-25-2013, 9:35 AM
Yeah, it does tend to leave a lot exposed- Rifle plates are designed to protect the absolutely *most* vitals (heart/lungs), with the thought being you can survive hits to other areas to make it to medical care. Designs like Dragon Skin remedied this situation, but the armor is both expensive ($7-$8K and up) and hard to find.

1911ShooterPhil
02-25-2013, 10:07 AM
Can you suggest some manufacturers of vests/soft armor that can also be used as plate carriers so I can get some ideas of what to look for? I'd like to eventually have level III armor (maybe even level IV). I saw the link that was posted for what plates to get, but I'm not really sure where to look for the soft armor/carrier.

I highly recommend Beez Combat Systems. I have used their products a lot over the years becasue their customer service is awesome, they make an excellent line of products, and you get a very well-designed & well thought-out piece of gear for relatively little...when you compare their prices to the other Gucci-gear makers out there.

Here's a review I did for them: http://blog.beezcombatsystems.com/body-armor-carriers-for-security-consultantcontractor.html

I highly recommend the NIJ-II vest or the OTV LBAV. For body armor that you'll be wearing for an extended period of time, you want it to be comfortable and form fitting. I have encountered many guys in the private security & security contracting world who do NOT wear their issued armor because they say it's uncomfortable or it does not fit well. That's their call. Me, I say in that case, invest in your own and wear it on duty (obviously with permission from the respective stakeholders).

If it's on your own dime, used on your time, then you still want something that will last, will be affordable, and can be tailored to fit your needs. This is why I use the Beez Combat Systems NIJ-II or the OTV LBAV. Both vests will take soft armor inserts. The NIJ-II will take NIJ "standard" vests (I.E. police issue body armor). On the front and back of the NIJ-II , there are pockets for you to insert hard (rifle) plates. So, if you need to, you can "armor up," and tailor your body armor to fit your needs. The cool thing about the NIJ-II is that it has 2 elastic straps on each side and they conform to your body. This is very important. What's the point of having body armor on if it doesn't cover the areas you need?

The OTV LBAV will take the armor inserts from any commonly encountered "Interceptor" vest...the standard GI "flak jacket" that you see soldiers and Marines wear in the news. The OTV LBAV turns the 3-piece "Interceptor" into a 2-piece vest with adjustable straps on the side, so it's easy to take on and off. Plus, it'll take hard (rifle) plates in the front and back as well, also allowing you to "armor up," if necessary.

The other cool thing about both of these vests is that you can throw on a Rhodesian chest rig, or a zip-up tactical vest, or a load bearing vest over these armor carriers. Used NIJ "standard" armor and military surplus "Interceptor" vests are easy to find. Check out www.GunBroker.com or www.AuctionArms.com or www.BulletProofMe.com.

These are just the observations and recommendations of a former Marine and current security contractor. Best bet is to go to some of the different tactical gear retailers around and try some stuff on. Hope this helps. Cheers!

--1911ShooterPhil

d-r
02-25-2013, 1:12 PM
Huge thumbs up to what Phil said. If you need a carrier, go with a Beez, they can literally make it to fit anything you have. This means all you need to find is the armor panels themselves. Get those to fit you, and have Beez take care of the rest.

1snakedoc
02-25-2013, 3:51 PM
i looking at the TAG Banshee.
i need one that hold side plates and the beez one is more than the banshee.
is it really that much better to spend for the beez?

d-r
02-25-2013, 5:20 PM
In the case of dedicated plate carriers, the TAG Banshee is my all-around first choice. If you are not running side plates or side soft armor, the Beez is less expensive.

Again, to re-list the choices in terms of features and price, they are:

$$$ SKD PIG- Top of the heap in features, and priced accordingly.

$$ TAG Banshee- Excellent balance of features and price.

$ Beez Slick- Best value, durability, and comfort, especially if not running side plates/soft armor. Upgradeable to cummerbund if required.

Hope this is helpful. There are many, MANY choices as far as plate carriers out there, these have been the ones I have kept coming back to.

1snakedoc
02-25-2013, 9:32 PM
which one is the easiest to put on, and how dose it work.
most i have seen you have to undo a lot just to get it on, i show a pic of one that had a way to undo the cummerbund with out having to undo 8'x8' of velcro, it had a buckle, do any of these have something like this?

d-r
02-26-2013, 11:45 AM
Most PC have a shoulder and waist buckle or hook and loop. In most cases, you can leave the shoulders and one side buckled, and just undo the cummerbund buckle or hook and loop to don or doff.

FaRKle!
02-26-2013, 1:12 PM
i looking at the TAG Banshee.
i need one that hold side plates and the beez one is more than the banshee.
is it really that much better to spend for the beez?

I have a 40 chest and I found the Banshee to be too wide for me with medium esapi plates & backers. I couldn't get a decent stock weld at all. The loop material on the upper portion of the carrier is super slippery so my stocks would all slide right off of the plate. The buckles on the shoulder straps prevented me from placing the stock above the cutout in the plates and there wasn't enough of me on the sides of the plates to place a stock. IMO the wrap under front flap closure is a pain as well. The wide shoulder straps also made it so I had to fight the plate carrier to bring my arms together to shoot pistols.

I moved to a Mayflower APC and with the same plates I have much better mobility. No issues with stock placement and no fighting the carrier when I shoot pistols. The extra cost was money well spent. The soft armor package for the Mayflower is also slightly cheaper than the Banshee's ($335 vs $370).

When you spec out the whole package the APC isn't really much more expensive with the Banshee running ~$520 (PC, Shoulder Pads, Soft Armor Package), and the APC running ~$550 for the same setup (APC comes with shoulder pads default). The only pros of the Banshee over the APC IMO are the NIJ .06 rated soft armor (APC Velocity Systems is only rated .04 - this only really matters for the cummerbund armor and only if you get shot at a contact shot distance), and 1000D construction vs 500D for the APC (may not be a "pro" depending on use case).

1911ShooterPhil
02-26-2013, 3:52 PM
which one is the easiest to put on, and how dose it work.
most i have seen you have to undo a lot just to get it on, i show a pic of one that had a way to undo the cummerbund with out having to undo 8'x8' of velcro, it had a buckle, do any of these have something like this?

The absolute easiest to put on and use is the Blackhawk Lo-Vis Plate Carrier (http://www.blackhawk.com/product/Low-Vis-Plate-Carrier,711,83.htm) or the Blackhawk STRIKE Plate Carrier Harness (http://www.blackhawk.com/product/STRIKE-Plate-Carrier-Harness,737,83.htm). Both are extremely spartan in nature and do NOT have a cumberbund. You throw them over your head and buckle them on the side. That easy. I have used both systems. Yes, they are not sexy looking, but they hold your plates and are quick to get into use. Cheers! --1911ShooterPhil

1snakedoc
02-26-2013, 6:25 PM
i order a banshee it looks good and most think it is good quality.
i wear a 46 jacket so maybe it will fit right.

FaRKle!
02-26-2013, 6:28 PM
i order a banshee it looks good and most think it is good quality.
i wear a 46 jacket so maybe it will fit right.

Should fit you just fine. The official plate backers for this thing are sized closer to a large esapi plate than a medium one (they're 12.5"x11").

chris
02-26-2013, 6:39 PM
i have the Banshee and i like it. very well made. i'm 6'2" and fits well.

Opticalabyss
03-03-2013, 6:47 PM
Hi all I am not associated with this company (http://www.ar500armor.com/index.php) but I have seen some youtube videos on their armor and it is really good stuff for a very low price.

They sell Steel plates as low as $65

http://www.ar500armor.com/index.php

d-r
03-04-2013, 9:05 AM
If you are going with steel, use the most up to date technology, which is flash Bainite:

http://www.ebay.com/itm/The-Best-AR500-CURVED-Body-Armor-Flash-Bainite-Record-Results-US-Army-/261172729317?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item3ccf1b95e5

Not associated with this company either.

Aufdrahtsein
03-04-2013, 11:47 AM
I was looking at AR500's plates for my plate-carrier ( FAPC made by Diamond Back Tactical ), but none of them are the right size; any suggestions about where to go to get plates made or what type of steel is best for the job so I can attempt to make them myself?

d-r
03-04-2013, 2:03 PM
Auf,

Check the link posted right above yours. The Flash Bainite AR500 steel plates are the current best and least expensive plates I am aware of. I have been eagerly awaiting this steel for about a year and a half.

They will also do custom stuff at some point, you just need to ask them, assuming you need the 8" X 10" REC cut plates for a size small FAPC? Good piece of kit, get in touch with the seller and request a price quote for curved 8X10 (trace your carrier so you get precisely the size you need) plates. You will need to paint these yourself to prevent corrosion, but for what you get, the price is amazing.

1snakedoc
03-05-2013, 7:00 AM
i bought a banshee and it looks great the quality is good but the shoulder pads are not that great. if i put the plates where they need to be the pads are split so far that there is no padding on the top only one the front and back. if i put the pads where they are close enough to fill ok the carrier is less than 1.5" from my face, im a thick guy so maybe that is the problem?

also the banshee will not hold plates on the side in the cummerbund, you have to hang them in a pouch that cost $25 for the set. this was a disappointment as i called and the guy told me they would, now they tell me i have to buy more to hold them. more weight more bulk!

Aufdrahtsein
03-05-2013, 4:12 PM
Auf,

Check the link posted right above yours. The Flash Bainite AR500 steel plates are the current best and least expensive plates I am aware of. I have been eagerly awaiting this steel for about a year and a half.

They will also do custom stuff at some point, you just need to ask them, assuming you need the 8" X 10" REC cut plates for a size small FAPC? Good piece of kit, get in touch with the seller and request a price quote for curved 8X10 (trace your carrier so you get precisely the size you need) plates. You will need to paint these yourself to prevent corrosion, but for what you get, the price is amazing.


What are people using to paint their plates with to enhance the longevity/prevent corrosion, D-r?

d-r
03-05-2013, 4:42 PM
My favorite is actually Rustoleum flat brown. Best if you can give the plates a quick blast and wash, dry in an oven, and then hit with 3-4 light coats. Lasts a LONG time, and no problem with rust, even with hard use.

1snakedoc
03-05-2013, 6:00 PM
wash them with mean green and paint no rust

sixoclockhold
03-12-2013, 1:27 PM
"armor is one of those things that should be in everyone's kit bag."

I have mixed feelings about armor. If Im getting shot at and get hit in the hand and there is no medical attention available I'll probably die of infection or bleeding. If I get hit in the leg same thing as before. If I get hit in the arm also same thing.

My feeling is best to not get into a fight or avoid one at ALL costs. But if you are getting shot at and you are lucky enough to have soft vests and hard plates and the magic bullets hits that plate then its your lucky day. If the shooter has AP 308 then its game over probably.

So my question is do I spend $2,000 dollars on something that protects half my body?

Great write up and thanks for the info.

This ^^^

As a civilian I think you become a target of $2k if morality is lost. Anyone who practices should be able to take your head off at 250 yards. Thank you, ba bye, come again.

Police and military don't leave home without it.

hermosabeach
03-21-2013, 10:58 AM
another thing to consider

Vest-Guard Body Armor Deodorizer
http://www.galls.com/cgi/CGBCSTYL?PMSTYL=BP076

Armorpur Body Armor Deodorizer
http://www.galls.com/cgi/CGBCSTYL?PMSTYL=BP754


http://www.bulletproofme.com/new%20download%20images/Vest-Guard-T.jpg

JaMail
03-27-2013, 10:02 AM
ive been looking at various armor and carrier combo's for a while now, i have a condor plate carrier i really dont like and wanted to thank some of you here, especially D-R for the great write up. I picked up the beeze BALCS and the flash bainite yesterday.

Edwood
04-06-2013, 3:26 AM
Anyone try out DKX Max Armor? I like that the IIIA Pistol Armor is only 1/4" thick and is very light weight. Downside is cost and being a rigid plate.

But seems to be a nice Home Defense possibility. Lightweight will be easier to throw on quickly.

The DKX Max Level III Rifle Armor plate is hilariously thick. But at less than 3 lbs. Wow.

d-r
04-06-2013, 10:09 AM
Answered this on another forum. I am not particularly impressed by DKX Max armor, for the reasons you mentioned- it is an expensive, thick, rigid plate that only gives soft armor protection. If you are going to run rigid plates, they should definitely be rifle rated, or run for a very specific mission (need to move fast, expect blunt objects to be used against you, etc.) If the areal density is below .98 lb.sq. ft. for level IIIA it would be worth considering, but if not, it is a solution in search of a problem. If you are going to spend the money, get a 2.1mm thick curved 10x12 Titanium plate, will accomplish the same thing and be much lighter and thinner.

lostfish
04-11-2013, 1:19 PM
Has anyone had experience with these? If so, thoughts?

http://www.victorytacticalgear.com/shop/level-iv-10x12-stand-alone/

With carrier...

http://www.victorytacticalgear.com/shop/banshee-defender-system/

LCU1670
04-11-2013, 1:30 PM
Don't forget: bulletproofme.com. and their police surplus, good deals!

FaRKle!
04-11-2013, 1:40 PM
Has anyone had experience with these? If so, thoughts?

http://www.victorytacticalgear.com/shop/level-iv-10x12-stand-alone/

With carrier...

http://www.victorytacticalgear.com/shop/banshee-defender-system/

Tested to NIJ Standard–0101.06 doesn't equal "certified." They don't show up on the NIJ tested and certified list. Last I heard DocGKR wasn't too fond of them either (for reasons uknown to me though).

tenbender
04-12-2013, 4:28 AM
What is the best way to store your armor? I was told by one bloke that laying flat is best and then again by a guy that professed to know everything about armor and said the best is to hang it on one of those rounded hangers for scuba type dive suits. Then read something that contradicted the "all knowing" that said by hanging the fibers actually start separating. Hanging is the best option, but not at the cost of rendering the vest ineffective against hits.

FaRKle!
04-12-2013, 10:50 AM
hanging the fibers actually start separating. Hanging is the best option, but not at the cost of rendering the vest ineffective against hits.

That doesn't make sense that a bulletproof and rugged material would fall apart simply by hanging by its own weight from a hanger... I'm sure all those 20+yr old kevlar vests that still work perfectly weren't handled with such care. You should be fine as long as however you store it minimizes creases.

d-r
04-12-2013, 1:08 PM
Lostfish- A good determinant is not just the NIJ .06 tests. If it also passes the FBI test protocol, I would say that it is good enough. This protocol requires the armor to pass contact shot testing. For hard armor, if it passes NIJ .06 testing, that is more than sufficient.

LCU- As long as the vests are 100% woven Kevlar. As stated before, BPme does sell vests that contain laminates. Their helmets and rifle plates are GTG.

Tenbender- Store them off the hanger. This admonition is mostly for the benefit of the carrier, which experiences stretching and distortion of the upper suspension system if hung from hangers. The armor is designed to have the weight/tension distributed by being worn, and all the straps bearing the weight. Elastic will stretch out and become useless if hung on a hanger for long periods of time. The fibers will not separate, that is absolute bollocks. ;)

Also, store it in the dark if possible. The large tupperware containers work well.

xxINKxx
04-14-2013, 5:32 PM
I bought an ar500 package for s** & gigs, and possible future emergencies. For how cheap it was why not. But the damn 6x8 side plates don't Velcro shut on the side pouches on the "operator II" aka condor plate carrier it comes with. It's about an inch too short to solidly secure it. Guess I gotta sew on some Velcro extensions or something. Pretty bulky and heavy though.

Darklyte27
04-14-2013, 5:50 PM
i got 6x6 and they fit fine, i think 6x6 was the max?

xxINKxx
04-14-2013, 6:43 PM
i got 6x6 and they fit fine, i think 6x6 was the max?

Operator II/condor is advertised that holds both 6x6 and 6x8. It pulls out a lil extra for the 6x8 but not quite enough. The package they sell only lets you get 6x8 and that carrier together. Musta got a dud carrier. I really would like a completely better set up since its heavy. But for the probability that ill never need them/use it I can't justify the high prices on lighter set up

Darklyte27
04-14-2013, 7:18 PM
i have a condor MOPC and a Shellback Banshee.

the mopc does say 6x8...

anonymouspatriot
04-14-2013, 8:07 PM
I have esapis rocking in my plate carrier defeats 308 AP lol

xxINKxx
04-17-2013, 8:08 PM
i have a condor MOPC and a Shellback Banshee.

the mopc does say 6x8...

Ya that's the condor I have. Not sure why all the body armor retailers choose to call it "operator II" and not say what your actually getting, when all they send you is a condor mopc. I got some Velcro straps. Hopefully it holds up after I sew it. Luckily plate carriers aren't too expensive compared to the actual plates. Maybe ill get lucky and win on some lotto scratchers from 7-11 and afford a bad *** set up haha

quiksilvern7
04-17-2013, 9:34 PM
anyone have any experience of info with this package from strike industires?
http://strikeindustries.com/shop/index.php/tactical-gear/bullet-proof-package/bullet-proof-backpack-w-strike-industries-simple-plate-carrier-2.html

FaRKle!
04-19-2013, 11:19 AM
anyone have any experience of info with this package from strike industires?
http://strikeindustries.com/shop/index.php/tactical-gear/bullet-proof-package/bullet-proof-backpack-w-strike-industries-simple-plate-carrier-2.html

Why would you want a hard plate that's only level IIIa? For pretty much the same price you can get Velocity Systems IIIa soft backers. That plate is also as heavy as a level III plate.

d-r
04-19-2013, 11:39 AM
Why would you want a hard plate that's only level IIIa? For pretty much the same price you can get Velocity Systems IIIa soft backers. That plate is also as heavy as a level III plate.

This.

If you are going with large plates, they should be rifle rated. This is the second company making rigid IIIA plates. Get soft armor backers, and rifle plates. You can then dial in the level of protection/weight you need.

ElToro
04-27-2013, 10:56 AM
I know a guy with a eagle scalable plate carrier that he got off eBay for like 150$ Large or xl i cant remember. He wants to know a decent steel plate set up ar500 or similar. Just for Walter Mitty and extreme SHTF or TEOTWAKI Since it will likely never be used for real, keeping cost minimal preferred but still have some level of real protection

wilhester
04-30-2013, 6:05 PM
Hello all, I'm new to the boards as well as the BA equipment and am looking to add BA to my BOB and was hoping for some advise. I'm been searching the net but honestly it seems like there are a ton of manufactures out there all claiming to be the best. I'm looking for some gear that can be multi use, that has soft armor with the option of adding plates, that's comfortable and can be used as a rig as well. I've come across "Paraclete Advanced Releasable Hard Plate Carrier, http://www.gearzonetactical.com/Paraclete-Advanced-Releasable-Hard-Plate-Carrier_p_3255.html" and was wondering if anyone had experience with it and or what your thoughts are? All advise/feedback is welcome and thank you in advance.

d-r
05-04-2013, 10:27 AM
IM sent Wil.

riflehobbyist
05-14-2013, 12:01 PM
i like my condor mopc and ar500 plates. i just run the front and back plates, i don't run any side plates, i figure if something goes down i will either be facing the threat or running away!

kaligaran
05-14-2013, 12:45 PM
i like my condor mopc and ar500 plates. i just run the front and back plates, i don't run any side plates, i figure if something goes down i will either be facing the threat or running away!

Condor items are hit and miss with their quality control.
With have heavy plates in it, you may want to start wearing it while training to make sure your seams are going to hold up under heavy use. If you haven't already. :) Since the plate carrier is literally something you are betting your life on, might want to ensure it's going to hold up.

I have a Condor soft shell jacket that has withstood a beating but I also have a Condor pouch that started breaking the seams with heavy use. After some googling, it seems that that's a common problem with Condor (hit and miss quality control on their products).
After some research on companies like Rothco and Condor, I've tried to avoid the products just so I don't have to worry about it. Just to be on the safe side.

riflehobbyist
05-15-2013, 12:09 AM
i agree with your assessment, some condor products vary but overall i've had a great experience with their products and it's the best VALUE in my opinion. for the price of 3 condor plate carriers ($55-60 ea) in different colors, it cost the same for 1 higher end carrier. sometimes the spacing on the molle is a bit off but nothing major. on the pouches i use condor and other brands in a mix/match. also i do use my mopc's regularly and have many hours with them hiking or fully loaded out usually 25-30 lbs total without any issues

FTW9999
05-18-2013, 2:39 PM
Looking at a protective armor international (PAI) vest from a friend. Anyone have Experience with them?

d-r
05-19-2013, 4:38 PM
PAI makes decent vests, make sure the one you are looking at is 100% woven Kevlar for the ballistic package.

vflores915
05-21-2013, 5:03 PM
Wore these in Iraq, took two shots from an AK from about 20 meters. I was wearing it on my right leg as a drop leg armor (both legs and both shoulders) it dropped me to my knees, and only left me a bruise... Good pieces of gear..http://i1156.photobucket.com/albums/p564/vflores915/IMAG0614.jpg[/URL[URL=http://s1156.photobucket.com/user/vflores915/media/IMAG0617.jpg.html]http://i1156.photobucket.com/albums/p564/vflores915/IMAG0617.jpg (http://s1156.photobucket.com/user/vflores915/media/IMAG0614.jpg.html)

Leonidimus
05-31-2013, 1:09 AM
Answered this on another forum. I am not particularly impressed by DKX Max armor, for the reasons you mentioned- it is an expensive, thick, rigid plate that only gives soft armor protection. If you are going to run rigid plates, they should definitely be rifle rated, or run for a very specific mission (need to move fast, expect blunt objects to be used against you, etc.) If the areal density is below .98 lb.sq. ft. for level IIIA it would be worth considering, but if not, it is a solution in search of a problem. If you are going to spend the money, get a 2.1mm thick curved 10x12 Titanium plate, will accomplish the same thing and be much lighter and thinner.

How about running IIIA rigid plates for better blunt trauma protection? I'm looking for pistol protection only for my Blackhawk STRIKE plate carrier. If DKX sucks that much - would it be a good option to use Velocity Systems BALCS panels for the STRIKE? Not sure it's compatible with Blackhawk's dimensions though.

As for Dyneema vs Kevlar - I'll only use the carrier twice a month in matches, it won't be exposed to heat. I like that Dyneema is slightly lighter and have a little higher ballistic limit (2,030 vs 1,882 fps). Does it make sense to run Dyneema in my case?

d-r
05-31-2013, 1:12 PM
V- Those are outstanding pictures! You were pretty lucky you had armor there, and that the rounds hit the plates. You can see the spalling pattern and where it exited the carriers.

Leo- Never said DKX sucks, just not particularly impressed. They just don't make sense for most circumstances. If you need more blunt trauma protection, and you are going rigid, it makes sense to go with rifle rated plates for the slight increase in weight. if you only need trauma protection and pistol rating, a layer of 3mm closed cell foam behind any standard plate backer is sufficient.

The STRIKE PC will not work with BALCS panels, it requires trapezoidal plate backers. BALCS more closely resembles concealable soft armor in its cut.

Again, my recommendation is for woven aramid only, but I am not going to be fanatical or dogmatic. If you have weighed the costs and benefits, and find Dyneema to meet your needs, then by all means run it. As you said, just make sure you don't leave it in the car, or expose it to heat. The other thing is the breathability, if you are sweating alot, laminates can lead to more heat casualties because of the non-permeability of the material. The only other safety concern is contact shots, and if those are not a high risk for you, then it should be fine.

Leonidimus
06-04-2013, 11:41 PM
The STRIKE PC will not work with BALCS panels, it requires trapezoidal plate backers. BALCS more closely resembles concealable soft armor in its cut. My STIKE Cutaway PC has 4 pockets total, rifle 10x12" ones and big A-shirt-shaped ones both front and back. Blackhawk makes soft IIIA armor (http://www.blackhawkvideo.com/HowToChooseYourArmor2011v7.pdf) for its STRIKE vests, the panels look a lot like BALCS (A-shirt with belly flaps) but the dimensions are probably different.
It's not that important anyway - after a day of testing I've decided to ditch the STRIKE because the ergonomics are not that great:
1) I got a Medium size, and the minimum girth is 42" due to enormous cummerbund, too much for relatively skinny folks. Small size will be too short and with 10" upper chest width.
2) center/bottom of the front MOLLE panel is not attached to the underlying layers, so 4 loaded mag pouches flap a lot. Hook and loop attachment between layers would be nice; I've seen some other carriers have it.

Oh well - back to square 1, choosing a carrier.

The other thing is the breathability, if you are sweating alot, laminates can lead to more heat casualties because of the non-permeability of the material. The only other safety concern is contact shots, and if those are not a high risk for you, then it should be fine.
Thanks for the hint! I was running a lightly loaded PC without panels for a few hours and it was already pretty hot, so now I think woven Kevlar is a better option :)

guitar-nut
06-17-2013, 4:13 PM
I found this to be pretty interesting. Think I'll be picking up some AR500 plates.
http://www.thebangswitch.com/plate-armor-on-a-budget/

d-r
06-17-2013, 6:55 PM
Guitar-nut, excellent post. You can see the details of how the Line-X works against spalling, but is removed after only 2-3 shots. Great article, and I highly recommend the AR500 plates.

FaRKle!
06-18-2013, 10:09 PM
I found this to be pretty interesting. Think I'll be picking up some AR500 plates.
http://www.thebangswitch.com/plate-armor-on-a-budget/

Please don't buy armor based off of backyard grade testing like in that video. I know MAC has some good information, but that video is FAR from SME-quality on rifle plates...

This (http://www.m4carbine.net/showthread.php?t=32839) is a good thread by a vetted SME. Also, recent test (http://www.m4carbine.net/showthread.php?t=133162) by same individual on AR500 armor... Essentially, if possibly facing higher velocity threats (M193), steel-based plates are a bad idea.

guitar-nut
06-23-2013, 8:48 PM
Please don't buy armor based off of backyard grade testing like in that video. I know MAC has some good information, but that video is FAR from SME-quality on rifle plates...

This (http://www.m4carbine.net/showthread.php?t=32839) is a good thread by a vetted SME. Also, recent test (http://www.m4carbine.net/showthread.php?t=133162) by same individual on AR500 armor... Essentially, if possibly facing higher velocity threats (M193), steel-based plates are a bad idea.

Wow, very informative. I stand quite corrected and will probably be saving up for something like AMI TAC3S plates. Seems you get what you pay for. When it comes to body armor, I think I'd rather drop the extra money for proven protection.

SCANDAL
08-04-2013, 3:03 PM
I just bought a PPE Python LX Series Threat Level II Concealable Body Armor. I think the ballistic material is called Twaron. Is that a good material? Thanks :)

Fidget253
08-04-2013, 3:14 PM
The only company I would trust with my Armor is Protech

http://www.protechtactical.com/

syferstream
08-05-2013, 6:22 AM
Are you guys familiar with Dragon Skin by Pinnacle Armor? What kind of materials are their plates made of?

d-r
08-05-2013, 8:12 PM
Scandal- Twaron is made by a Dutch company called Azko. They hold the patent on several processes for spinning aramid fabrics into armor, and Dupont actually pays them royalties for these processes. I regard Twaron as equal or slightly better than equivalent Kevlar fabric due to increased fibriliation (more fibers in a given strand), and the ability of Twaron to function better without as much quilt stitching as Kevlar.

Good stuff.

Fidget- They still use laminates in some of their products. It is not as simple as saying this or that company is all good. If I had to pick one it would be US Armor.

Syferstream- While a good concept, Dragonskin had issues with the laminate discs coming unglued due to high heat environments. With further development and product maturity, I think the concept has great potential.

syferstream
08-07-2013, 11:00 PM
d-r, are you aware of any personal body armor incorporating boron carbide? You have the potential to be a bipedal tank, no? :)

d-r
08-09-2013, 2:49 PM
d-r, are you aware of any personal body armor incorporating boron carbide? You have the potential to be a bipedal tank, no? :)

Of course. :)

Sintered B4C has actually been in use since Vietnam (the disparagingly named "chicken plates" were B4C). There have been many improvements since then, mostly with regard to increasing the theoretical density (100% being optimal). Depending on how it is processed (hot pressed, sintered, pressureless sintered), it will exhibit different properties. All variations exhibit extreme hardness (third hardest substance in the world behind diamond and boron nitride). It is the go-to material for facing AP rounds, along with SiC (silicon carbide). It is also very low density compared to other ceramic solutions (2.5-2.6 g/cm3 vs. 3.2-3.9 g/cm3 for SiC or Al2O3).

Like all other ceramics, the achillies heel is fragility, more specifically the fracture toughness. B4C has moderate fracture toughness compared to other ceramics, so care is needed in handling. Recently, a company has begun using carbon nanotubes to enhance the fracture toughness of B4C. This makes the ceramic very durable, but the drawback (as with most things nano right now) is the extreme expense.

Until more engineered nano substances arrive on the scene with better cost to weight ratios, B4C, SiC and Al2O3 are here to stay.

syferstream
08-12-2013, 11:48 PM
So correct me if I'm wrong, d-r, aren't tank armors composed of boron carbide? How do they overcome the fragility of their armor?

Another thing I'm wondering is how well can ceramic armor defeat repeated hits in the same spot. If say theoretically three rounds were to hit the same spot consecutively will it defeat the ceramic armor?

d-r
08-13-2013, 2:01 AM
Syfer,

Tank armor is a whole 'nother subject. The threats facing tanks vs. humans cannot be scaled reliably. Tank armor is still (even at this juncture) mostly steel (RHA, High Hard, Dual or even Triple Hardness).

The projectiles are either hypervelocity DU or WHA (Tungsten Heavy Alloy) darts at approximately 3Km/s, or even higher velocity molten metal jets from shaped charges. Stopping these threats requires much more mass, and different materials. B4C is a great material, but there are more appropriate materials for tanks (which don't *HAVE* to be light and thin, even though that would be a benefit).

Tank armor by nature cannot be fragile, due to the extreme vibration and impact they are subject to just in the course of road marches. And even with all the whiz-bang tech that we have arrived at, it is still MOSTLY good old fashioned steel.

B4C is a good choice for current body armor because it is lightweight, extremely hard, and is moderately tough. If weight was not a factor, there are much better choices.

Zamble
08-15-2013, 12:14 PM
I was looking into buying plates of AR500 with 1/4" of line-x for a spall guard. How would these rate and does the line-x prevent the round splatter?

d-r
08-15-2013, 5:13 PM
Zamble,

AR500 plates are excellent for their price and protection (M80 ball @ 2750 fps and lesser threats). The Line-X does provide some spall mitigation, but it is not a perfect solution. Impacting rounds will ablate the coating, leaving you subject to spalling for subsequent rounds. The Line-X works in conjunction with my spall guards (which are much more resilient to multiple hits).

A good example of truck bed liner and how it reacts to impacts can be found on page 3 (WITH THANKS TO VFLORES915 FOR USE OF PICTURE):

http://i1156.photobucket.com/albums/p564/vflores915/IMAG0617.jpg (http://s1156.photobucket.com/user/vflores915/media/IMAG0617.jpg.html)

Maltese Falcon
08-15-2013, 5:45 PM
Regarding soft armor longevity.

I understand soft armor has a finite life.

Is this based on a set period of time or is it more from the wear and tear that daily LE / Mil wearers undergo?

I have had some SA since 2009 that I have worn maybe 3-4 times max just to get a feel for it and wonder if they are still GTG?

.

d-r
08-15-2013, 11:17 PM
All equipment made by the hand of man has a finite life. The good news is, woven Kevlar can, if properly maintained, last 25+ years and still be GTG. There are actually tests of older armor performing better than brand new.

The biggest killers of woven aramid armor are UV (Sunlight and flourescent bulbs) and mold/mildew/bacteria caused by sweating heavily and then putting your armor in a dark space. The beasties will begin to compromise the strength of the fibers. Best way to keep your armor from deteriorating is to treat it well. Rinse it in baking soda to neutralize any acids, then a very mild detergent. Rinse again and let it dry completely. Keep it out of the sun, or bright artificial light. The carrier will keep the UV under control.

My bump in the night armor has main panels from 1985. I have utter confidence in them, since they have been tested extensively by myself and many others. Like anything else, YMMV, but as long as the armor was not mistreated, it will last a LOOONG time.

40calibre
08-23-2013, 3:02 AM
Has anyone purchased a plate carrier from Ar500.com I have been searching and searching for a thorough review.

mindwip
08-23-2013, 7:11 AM
Bulletproofme shot up a 25 year old panel and it did just fine. They have pics on their site.

Ordered a test panel from them just one have a vest with out the carrier. These panels are either really old or in bad condition. Meant for test shooting not wearing. I shoot it with lots of shot gun buck shot and 9. Held up just fine.

syferstream
08-23-2013, 8:37 PM
Is anyone here familiar with any liquid armors? I heard of one being developed by BAE, and I think the US military researched liquid armors as well. Are there any liquid armors currently on the market?

d-r
08-26-2013, 8:54 PM
Bulletproofme shot up a 25 year old panel and it did just fine. They have pics on their site.

Ordered a test panel from them just one have a vest with out the carrier. These panels are either really old or in bad condition. Meant for test shooting not wearing. I shoot it with lots of shot gun buck shot and 9. Held up just fine.

Yes, their "test" panels are in rough shape. If you want ones in good shape let me know.

d-r
08-26-2013, 9:44 PM
Is anyone here familiar with any liquid armors? I heard of one being developed by BAE, and I think the US military researched liquid armors as well. Are there any liquid armors currently on the market?

STF (shear thickening fluid) or non-newtonian solid armors rely on the property of dilatance, which means a shear force (impact) will transform the material reversibly from a liquid to a solid.

This material received a lot of attention about 5-10 years ago as a possible knife/stab armor for clothing, but has been plagued with problems, such as how to keep the properties from washing out of the fabric. It currently finds a place in sports equipment and protective gear. 3D0 and Zoombang are currently making a gel-like foam material that is used in sports and industrial protection articles.

While there is a lot of potential, the problem of containment of the liquid are currently slowing it's adoption.

plouffedaddy
09-07-2013, 8:10 AM
http://imageshack.us/a/img69/4980/paov.jpg



I recently tested the Guardian IV ceramic level IV plates from Midwest Armor. They were designed to be a reasonably priced plate while still maintaining level IV protection. They retail for $199 but Midwest Armor was gracious enough to offer my viewers with a discount code of "MGG" available on their website. With that code you'll get each plate for $125 (pretty good price for level IV protection). In the video below I shot them up with 9mm, 40 S&W, 5.56x45, 7.62x39, 5.45x39, and 7.62x54r. Here's what I found:

Pros:
-Stopped all rounds
-Made in the USA
-Guaranteed for 5 years
-10''x12'' and 1'' thick
-Curved for comfort
-The shoulder areas are cut for shouldering long guns
-Each plate weighs 7.3 pounds

Cons:
-Really the only one I can think of is the fact that it only comes in one size.

0-ETnuzQfHs

d-r
09-09-2013, 9:26 AM
Plouff, thanks for the review. Are these non-fragile? If not, another con (like most ceramic composite plates) is that they are subject to breakage with handling.

toyotaguy
09-13-2013, 7:35 PM
D-R you mentioned earlier you were excited about the Flash Bainite, do you still think its the way to go? How about this with the included spall sheild http://www.ebay.com/itm/The-Best-AR500-w-SPLATTER-SHIELD-Standalone-Body-Armor-TWO-10-x12-Plates-/251262281876?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item3a80662894

buckshot0351
09-14-2013, 6:26 AM
Has anyone looked at infadelbodyarmor.com. infadel body armor seeme promising. Has anti-spawl coating but they are heavy (8lbs each) and maybe a little on the pricey side.

d-r
09-14-2013, 9:43 AM
Toyotaguy- I *really* like the Bainite plates. Their spall covers work just fine, with tradeoffs (as do all the current anti-spall solutions).

Here is a breakdown:

Bainite spall covers- Good spall absorption, heavier, thicker, metallic, semi-sacrificial (multiple hits), medium-high price point, only available on Bainite

Fabric Spallguards- Good spall absorption, thinner, lighter, non-metallic, moderately sacrificial, (multiple hits) medium-high price point, any plate:
http://www.calguns.net/calgunforum/showthread.php?t=791940

Rubber coating (Line-X, Rhinolining)- Good spall absorption, durable, thicker, heavier, non-metallic, sacrificial coating (4-6 hits max), medium price point, any plate

Based on your needs, select the solution that works best for you. There is more than one way to skin a catfish.

Buckshot- Those are just coated Targetman plates marked up, go with either AR500 or Targetman with coating for the same thing but less expense. The PMAGs for $45 should help calibrate where their prices are.

d-r
09-14-2013, 10:12 AM
Upon evaluation, I cannot recommend any current armor containing Carbon Nanotubes. All armor systems using this material currently rely on Dyneema or Spectra laminates behind one layer of CNT. At such time as the material is used with woven Aramid, I will be able to give my stamp of approval.

d-r
09-14-2013, 10:26 AM
Stab and cut resistant armor-

It is far past time to include information on stab and cut resistant armor. This will incorporate all current options.

****CUT AND STAB ARMOR******

Ballistic armor is designed to stop high velocity projectiles, while cut/stab armor is designed to stop very slow, sharp and pointed objects from cutting/piercing the wearer's skin.

This type of armor is a continuation of the most ancient forms of personal armor, which has seen the use of bone, fabric, leather, and finally metal. It is interesting that the current state of technology has returned to the use of fabric as the primary defense against thrusting and cutting implements.

As it has been for millennia, there are always trade-offs in terms of protection vs. weight/concealability. The most protective suits, while they can be made with extremely good ergonomics, will tend to be hotter, heavier, and far from low-profile. Semi-rigid and rigid armors, which include forms of metal mesh (traditional "maille"), interlocking articulated plates (metal or metal/composite), lamellar, or solid plates are very efficient at stopping cuts and thrusts. Their weight and heat burden tend to be fairly high. Materials range from stainless steel, titanium, to rigid para-aramid (Kevlar/Twaron).

Fabric materials are currently used in the majority of concealable stab/cut vests. These include the familiar materials Kevlar, Twaron, and Spectra. As before, UHMWPE laminates should be eschewed, even though they may provide better numbers in terms of weight. The known weaknesses of this material outweigh any benefits. Generally, the Para-Aramids are woven, similar to their ballistic counterparts, but are much tighter weave. This is to prevent spikes from pushing the fibers aside. The number of layers is directly proportional to the protection levels, which are rated in a similar way to ballistic standards. They are:

KR1/SP1 (Knife Resistant Level I/Spike Protection Level I) - Lowest level, resists knife thrusts and spike stabs at 24J up to 36J
KR2/SP2 (Knife Resistant Level II/Spike Protection Level II) Medium level, resists knife thrusts and spike stabs at 33J up to 50J
KR3/SP3 (Knife Resistant Level III/Spike Protection Level III) High Level, resists knife thrusts and spike stabs at 43J up to 65J

Level I armor is generally the best choice if wearing for long periods and/or concealed.

Level II is a good compromise between concealability and protection.

Level III is for short periods of time, and is not generally concealable.

The test protocol involves dropping a weighted sabot (weighing about four and a half pounds) from different heights with the test blade or spike onto the armor sample. Up to 7mm of penetration is allowed at the minimum force, and up to 20mm at the maximum force. Any greater penetration at either energy will fail the armor. There is *no* penetration permitted for the spike test at any energy level. A single sample armor may be subjected to over 30 drops, with no overpenetration permitted.

I am sure a lot of folks are wondering about how well knife/stab armor performs against bullets. The answer is "not as well as a dedicated ballistic vest." K/S armor is engineered towards a very different threat compared to handgun rounds. Knives, spikes, and syringes have a very small frontal area compared with handgun bullets, and as such, require different materials and construction methods to be used. There are dual and triple rated vests (ballistic + knife and ballistic + knife + spike), but they are generally VERY expensive, and heavier/thicker than dedicated armors. If you absolutely have to protect against multiple threat types, try to wear before purchasing to ensure it is comfortable.

penguin0123
09-28-2013, 1:26 PM
Looking to get some rifle protection primarily for classes and secondarily for SHTF. Since I don't want the expense to yearly check for cracks, nor do I want to run the risk of tripping and throwing away an expensive plate, I'm looking more to steel than ceramic. Are there good ceramics out there that can stand rough handling that isn't astronomically expensive?

Would you recommend Lvl 3 or 4?

I've found a couple of the following plates that seems interesting. What are the consensus on them? Are there other choices I should consider?


Infidel Armor Level 3 (http://infidelbodyarmor.com/index.php?main_page=index&cPath=1)
Targetman Level 3 steel plates (http://www.thetargetman.com/product-category/ballistic-body-armor-ar500-omega-level-iii/ar500-omega-armor-trauma-plates/rhino-lined-ar500-omega-armor-trauma-plates/)
Targetman Level 4 ceramic plates (http://www.thetargetman.com/product/level-iv-composite-body-armor/)
Stuff from Bulletproofme (http://www.bulletproofme.com/Body_Armor_Accessories_Rifle_Protection.shtml)


BPme plates seems to be cheaper than other options. What are your thoughts on those?

d-r
09-30-2013, 10:55 PM
Yes, ceramic plates can be made insensitive to shock and impact.

Level 3 spec is 6 rounds of M80 ball @ 2750 fps in a 6" circle.

Level 4 spec is ONE round of M2 AP @ 2800 fps.

The decision is based on what you feel is a bigger issue for your specific anticipated threat.

Infidel armor is identical to AR500 and Targetman, just more expensive.

Targetman and AR500 plates are quite good, and inexpensive. The Targetman ceramic plates will exhibit the same issues with fragility as nearly all monolithic or mosaic plates currently fielded.

BPme has ok prices on rifle plates, though you can find better deals if you look.

d-r
10-02-2013, 8:16 PM
Here is a link to TAP GAMMA III plates at a great price (no connection to seller):

http://www.calguns.net/calgunforum/showthread.php?t=652979

d-r
10-22-2013, 8:57 AM
Updated 10-20-13, added Cut and Stab armor info in post #146

smashycrashy
11-06-2013, 4:19 PM
D-r any recommendations for helmets.. Seems the choices are limited.

Lifeon2whls
11-06-2013, 4:46 PM
Infidel armor is identical to AR500 and Targetman, just more expensive.

Targetman and AR500 plates are quite good, and inexpensive. The Targetman ceramic plates will exhibit the same issues with fragility as nearly all monolithic or mosaic plates currently fielded.


Question - Unless things have changed since you posted that, the Infidel plates and AR500 plates do seem to be identical with the exception of their spall guards. The Line-X of AR500 seems fairly wonky when compared to what they are using on the Infidel plates.

I'd like to pick up a set of Steel Plates but want something with good spall protection. Advice?

smashycrashy
11-06-2013, 5:05 PM
Check toyotaguys link on 9/14/13.. Flash bainite with spall covers.

TheExiled
11-06-2013, 5:41 PM
Question - Unless things have changed since you posted that, the Infidel plates and AR500 plates do seem to be identical with the exception of their spall guards. The Line-X of AR500 seems fairly wonky when compared to what they are using on the Infidel plates.

I'd like to pick up a set of Steel Plates but want something with good spall protection. Advice?

I picked up a set from this guy: http://www.ar500-targets.com/Default.asp

Hes a calgunner, he has a thread in the commercial section and good pricing. I tested mine when I got them, and if they take more rounds than I tested them with, I probably am not supposed to walk away from that situation

d-r
11-07-2013, 10:39 AM
On a budget- A used PASGT helmet with Oregon Aero padding/suspension upgrade will do in a pinch.

If you are looking for the best, an MSA TC2001 or 2002 would be my recommendation.

D-r any recommendations for helmets.. Seems the choices are limited.

d-r
11-07-2013, 10:42 AM
Check toyotaguys link on 9/14/13.. Flash bainite with spall covers.

Read post #144 on the different spall guard options as well.

smashycrashy
11-07-2013, 10:43 AM
Thanks!

Leonidimus
11-12-2013, 4:35 PM
It appears AR500 Armor level III plates do not stop XM193 (though stop XM855). Are there any other inexpensive plates that can stop it?

smashycrashy
11-12-2013, 4:51 PM
The flash bainite ar500 claims it can stop xm193

Cypriss32
11-12-2013, 11:17 PM
How is the us Palm level 4 stuff they have forsale now? It is about 499.99.

d-r
11-13-2013, 9:53 AM
It appears AR500 Armor level III plates do not stop XM193 (though stop XM855). Are there any other inexpensive plates that can stop it?

You might check out the plates by MAINGUN Surplus. They are Mil-Spec HHS (High Hardness Steel). At the given thickness, they should stop M193 at 3000+ fps. Plus, they are extremely affordable. After testing, I may be recommending these as the baseline steel plate.

d-r
11-13-2013, 9:55 AM
How is the us Palm level 4 stuff they have forsale now? It is about 499.99.

These are most likely based on the ESAPI plates. Same cautions regarding fragility as other ceramic plates. It is not a bad package price, if you require level IV protection.

Leonidimus
11-21-2013, 1:07 AM
You might check out the plates by MAINGUN Surplus. They are Mil-Spec HHS (High Hardness Steel). At the given thickness, they should stop M193 at 3000+ fps. Plus, they are extremely affordable. After testing, I may be recommending these as the baseline steel plate.

Thanks, these "Patriot Plates" look promising. The weight is about the same as ar500.com plates, which is good. They're not curved, unfortunately.
So, is MIL-A-46100 significantly better than AR500? They also mention "the highest performing" MIL-DTL-46100E; do I understand it correctly that it's different from MIL-A?

d-r
11-21-2013, 12:17 PM
Thanks, these "Patriot Plates" look promising. The weight is about the same as ar500.com plates, which is good. They're not curved, unfortunately.
So, is MIL-A-46100 significantly better than AR500? They also mention "the highest performing" MIL-DTL-46100E; do I understand it correctly that it's different from MIL-A?

IMHO, the Patriot Plates are currently the best combination of performance and price point. The lack of curvature is a consideration, but minor when you compare the performance you are getting in return. The specs listed are similar for High Hardness Steel plate, with a nominal hardness between Brinell 477-534. The material is inherently superior to AR500.

Cypriss32
11-23-2013, 4:37 PM
Anyone looked at the US palm SAP-C plate carrier. Says level IV. I watched a few videos doing testing and looks good.

d-r
11-23-2013, 5:24 PM
Anyone looked at the US palm SAP-C plate carrier. Says level IV. I watched a few videos doing testing and looks good.

See my response in post #162

Cypriss32
11-23-2013, 5:39 PM
See my response in post #162

Thanks, I am looking for something Level III that is slim line. I can still put a jacket over it when worn. Any ideas?

d-r
11-23-2013, 6:37 PM
Thanks, I am looking for something Level III that is slim line. I can still put a jacket over it when worn. Any ideas?

With level III vs. level IV, the level III will nearly always be thinner. Nearly always. The cost for shaving millimeters of thickness off of a level IV plate gets exponentially higher vs. level III. Steel is still going to be the thinnest level III you can get, with the best at around 4.5mm + your chosen spall mitigation solution. I may have an ultra-low profile solution for you very soon.

Cypriss32
11-23-2013, 7:39 PM
Please let me know.

Digital_Boy
11-24-2013, 10:39 PM
D-R, have you done any research into Modumetal, or seen any companies incorporating the technology into their product lines?

My read on it is they've found a way to apply nano scale technology to traditional steel processes. They have a quick video that demonstrates what appears to be a nanolattice spall guard over a (I'm guessing here) energy absorption core.

http://www.modumetal.com/products/armor/

d-r
11-25-2013, 8:55 AM
D-R, have you done any research into Modumetal, or seen any companies incorporating the technology into their product lines?

My read on it is they've found a way to apply nano scale technology to traditional steel processes. They have a quick video that demonstrates what appears to be a nanolattice spall guard over a (I'm guessing here) energy absorption core.

http://www.modumetal.com/products/armor/

I have not seen any commercially available nano-laminates yet. There is a company utilizing carbon nanotubes as an additive, but they are using Spectra materials as the base, which renders the material not-suitable for soft armor.

The technology (Modumetal) sounds promising, when it can be scaled up to apply to large volumes of plates.

andrews556
12-07-2013, 12:53 PM
"armor is one of those things that should be in everyone's kit bag."

I have mixed feelings about armor. If Im getting shot at and get hit in the hand and there is no medical attention available I'll probably die of infection or bleeding. If I get hit in the leg same thing as before. If I get hit in the arm also same thing.

My feeling is best to not get into a fight or avoid one at ALL costs. But if you are getting shot at and you are lucky enough to have soft vests and hard plates and the magic bullets hits that plate then its your lucky day. If the shooter has AP 308 then its game over probably.

So my question is do I spend $2,000 dollars on something that protects half my body?

Great write up and thanks for the info.


While it may not be the absolute best option, I have a Banshee armor carrier (which I love) and AR500 level 3 rifle plates. It is definitely a bit heavier but if you are in shape and train like everyone should than it's not a big deal. The vest and 2 plates will only cost around $320 and is a practical option for the average person that does not have a ton of money.

d-r
12-11-2013, 10:20 PM
Any armor is better than none at all. Steel plates make more sense for someone on a budget, they can be upgraded as funds permit.

Also, if steel plates are too heavy, I am reminded of a quote from an excellent movie: "Grow stronger!"

;)

smashycrashy
12-13-2013, 8:13 AM
I was reading that soft body armor has issues when exposed to heat over long periods. Is there a soft body armor that could take sitting in the back of a car trunk over long periods of time and still retain its effectiveness?

d-r
12-13-2013, 9:10 AM
I was reading that soft body armor has issues when exposed to heat over long periods. Is there a soft body armor that could take sitting in the back of a car trunk over long periods of time and still retain its effectiveness?

You are correct, but only regarding soft armor containing UHMWPE (SPECTRA/DYNEEMA) or laminates (Goldflex, Goldshield). These materials will denature above 169 F for the UHMWPE and 200 for the laminates.

Armor made from 100% WOVEN ARAMID will be fine up to 650-700 F with no loss of ballistic effectiveness. UV light and mold/mildew/bacteria are the only things that will cause degradation of this material, so keeping it out of DIRECT sunlight and cleaning occasionally with baking soda and warm distilled water are good preventative maintenance routines.

You need to be dilligent when selecting armor, as many, if not most, contain either laminates or UHMWPE these days. US Armor's Enforcer Classic is 100% woven Aramid (Kevlar and/or Twaron).

rero360
01-13-2014, 7:52 PM
I was able to pick up a set of Velocity System triple curve III/IV plates (VS-P34-1012) for a great price to go with the backers that I've had for the last year or so. Everything I've looked at says that they are heavier than the ESAPIs I wore in the 'Stan (I wore smalls) but my PC feels lighter, maybe its the lack of radio, antennae or giant god awful Condor IFAK they insisted we wear on our left side. Same number and type of mags and all that though.

fallfornoone
01-13-2014, 8:14 PM
I picked up some ar500 plates with liner (might be linex). Seems like I could have made a better choice. Can I put any kind of plates or soft armor in front of the plates to increase the threat level? The guardian IV seem to be pretty good plates also, any opinions on theses?

d-r
01-13-2014, 10:21 PM
I picked up some ar500 plates with liner (might be linex). Seems like I could have made a better choice. Can I put any kind of plates or soft armor in front of the plates to increase the threat level? The guardian IV seem to be pretty good plates also, any opinions on theses?

In a word, no. Putting soft armor on the strike face of rifle plates will not increase the threat level one bit, since rifle rounds do not "see" soft armor. As backers, they work well to catch rear face spall or rounds that *just* penetrate the plates. For front face spall, special types of material can act as a guard to prevent the impacting bullet fragments from exiting at high velocity and possibly causing injury.

The Guardian 4 plates are a decent option if you need to be certain of stopping M2AP. The fragility issues are present, but the price point is good.

fallfornoone
01-14-2014, 10:03 AM
In a word, no. Putting soft armor on the strike face of rifle plates will not increase the threat level one bit, since rifle rounds do not "see" soft armor. As backers, they work well to catch rear face spall or rounds that *just* penetrate the plates. For front face spall, special types of material can act as a guard to prevent the impacting bullet fragments from exiting at high velocity and possibly causing injury.

The Guardian 4 plates are a decent option if you need to be certain of stopping M2AP. The fragility issues are present, but the price point is good.

would you reccomend adding backers and some additional spall guard (in addition to the linex plate) to increase protection or just getting new level IV plates?


Ive used my carrier at a front sight course and it worked out pretty good. My goal would be to have level IV protection and plates that can stop xm193, that seems to be something few can do and those rounds are very popular. Besides using the carrier at front sight and rifle classes my intention was to have this for emergency/shft/bug out gear. Steel is nice because you can be rough with it but you are missing protection.

d-r
01-14-2014, 12:59 PM
If you are sticking with the steel, then yes, guards and backers are definitely recommended. Again, they will not bring a level III plate up to level IV standards. They make the plates safer by reducing the chance of injury due to spall, and adding blunt force padding and rear face overmatch protection.

If you need M193 protection, get a set of TAP GAMMA III plates. If you need to have protection against a single round (up to and including M2AP), then get a set of level IV plates. Just remember, it is probably better to have multi-hit protection against more common rounds rather than have one-shot and then junk 'em level IV.

would you reccomend adding backers and some additional spall guard (in addition to the linex plate) to increase protection or just getting new level IV plates?


Ive used my carrier at a front sight course and it worked out pretty good. My goal would be to have level IV protection and plates that can stop xm193, that seems to be something few can do and those rounds are very popular. Besides using the carrier at front sight and rifle classes my intention was to have this for emergency/shft/bug out gear. Steel is nice because you can be rough with it but you are missing protection.

gicts
01-17-2014, 6:55 AM
Hey guys,

I picked up my first PC recently, just a cheap Voodoo FAST. For a civie doing a few courses and getting a feel for what I want, I think the carrier will do for now.

The one thing I don't care for is there doesn't seem to be an option for side plates. There is a big ole plastic buckle on the side.

I've seen a MOLLE pouch that attaches to the sides to carry plates. Is this something that could work? I think it would end up covering the buckle, which would make donning and doffing on one side a PITA.

Any suggestions (minus getting another pc)?

smashycrashy
01-17-2014, 9:11 AM
There are pouches and cummerbunds but I don't think the cummerbunds work without at least a loop to hold it with the plate carrier.

For the cost of the pouches or standalone cummerbund you can get a PC with integrated but removable cummerbund, cheap but works:
http://www.condoroutdoor.com/mopc_modular_operator_plate_carrier.aspx

gicts
01-17-2014, 10:28 AM
So something like this wouldn't be a worthwhile workaround?

Ebay link (http://www.ebay.com/itm/NEW-SET-2-USMC-COYOTE-SIDE-PLATE-CARRIER-POCKET-PCG-C-MC-SPP-MS-5SCOY-EAGLE-IND/181216000522?_trksid=p2047675.m2109&_trkparms=aid%3D555012%26algo%3DPW.MBE%26ao%3D1%26 asc%3D389%26meid%3D4185906408039835555%26pid%3D100 010%26prg%3D1076%26rk%3D1%26rkt%3D15%26sd%3D261357 148316%26)

smashycrashy
01-17-2014, 10:34 AM
Make sure they are big enough to bridge the gap on the side. Some are designed to attach to a molle cummerbund that is on the side but doesn't have pockets for plates. If it bridges the gap that's a great price

d-r
01-19-2014, 2:01 PM
The Voodoo FAST is not set up for side armor or cummerbund inserts. The straps are permanent. A workaround could be designed that piggybacks off of the straps, and could profile a molle soft armor cummerbund. Plates would be too heavy, and since it is a single strap, would cause it to roll to the outside. The Condor is a good option if you want side plates/armor.

Hey guys,

I picked up my first PC recently, just a cheap Voodoo FAST. For a civie doing a few courses and getting a feel for what I want, I think the carrier will do for now.

The one thing I don't care for is there doesn't seem to be an option for side plates. There is a big ole plastic buckle on the side.

I've seen a MOLLE pouch that attaches to the sides to carry plates. Is this something that could work? I think it would end up covering the buckle, which would make donning and doffing on one side a PITA.

Any suggestions (minus getting another pc)?

DeliveryBoy
01-20-2014, 7:32 PM
So whats the verdict on the new plate DBT released... KAP III+ ?

chris
01-20-2014, 8:05 PM
While it may not be the absolute best option, I have a Banshee armor carrier (which I love) and AR500 level 3 rifle plates. It is definitely a bit heavier but if you are in shape and train like everyone should than it's not a big deal. The vest and 2 plates will only cost around $320 and is a practical option for the average person that does not have a ton of money.

did you get the Kevlar inserts for it? I have one and I have added those to my Banshee. I use the plates I have from my IBA I wore in Iraq. it was my personal one I used it up until the Army said no more personal IBA in theater.

d-r
01-21-2014, 11:48 AM
So whats the verdict on the new plate DBT released... KAP III+ ?

Check out post #91. There are several companies releasing IIIA plates, and I am not impressed. If you are going to wear rigid plates, it does not make sense to wear pistol-only rated. At the minimum, they should stop AK rounds.

These plates are a solution in search of a non-existent problem. If you need extra trauma reduction, go with a rigid plate made of Titanium, which can be made 2.1mm thick and provide the same level of trauma reduction and protection.

DeliveryBoy
01-28-2014, 1:35 PM
Check out post #91. There are several companies releasing IIIA plates, and I am not impressed. If you are going to wear rigid plates, it does not make sense to wear pistol-only rated. At the minimum, they should stop AK rounds.

These plates are a solution in search of a non-existent problem. If you need extra trauma reduction, go with a rigid plate made of Titanium, which can be made 2.1mm thick and provide the same level of trauma reduction and protection.

Sorry, III+ not IIIA. Meaning they are hard armor at Level III. The "+" refers to being able to stop the m193 (which Level III does not technically specify).

d-r
01-28-2014, 11:02 PM
I will look into them.

Sorry, III+ not IIIA. Meaning they are hard armor at Level III. The "+" refers to being able to stop the m193 (which Level III does not technically specify).

patriot_man
01-29-2014, 2:12 AM
Doc have you taken a look at the Tyr III+ hard plates?

I am mind boggled by the weight and I've been hearing that these are used by a tier 1 unit so I would think they perform as advertised.

Link (http://www.tyrtactical.com/products/details/ballistic-plates-soft-armor-inserts/tyr-hard-armor-level-3-i-c-plate/)

d-r
01-29-2014, 9:14 AM
Doc have you taken a look at the Tyr III+ hard plates?

I am mind boggled by the weight and I've been hearing that these are used by a tier 1 unit so I would think they perform as advertised.

Link (http://www.tyrtactical.com/products/details/ballistic-plates-soft-armor-inserts/tyr-hard-armor-level-3-i-c-plate/)

They are on my short list of new plates to evaluate. THE DBT KAP actually have me intrigued as well. Their construction method appears to be rather unique, in that they are using a ceramic composite "infusion" rather than monolithic panels. Such a construction method was suggested in IJIE (International Journal of Impact Engineering) several years back, and would be a step up in terms of ruggedness and durability.

The Tyr plates have been on my radar for a few months, and also look like they could be a good option. The only issue with both is of course, cost.

Will post more information after I have a chance to eval.

Lifeon2whls
01-29-2014, 12:51 PM
If you need M193 protection, get a set of TAP GAMMA III plates. If you need to have protection against a single round (up to and including M2AP), then get a set of level IV plates. Just remember, it is probably better to have multi-hit protection against more common rounds rather than have one-shot and then junk 'em level IV.

Given the amount of energy that would be transferred after being hit by a rifle round, the wearer is going to...at the minimum, have the wind knocked out of them, possibly be bruised and potentially have some broken ribs, etc. Unless we are in a SHTF type of situation, my assumption would be that if I was protected by the armor, I would care less if I had to junk them after the hit and buy a new set (I equate this to a high quality motorcycle helmet...they are only good for one "hit" but you want the best possible. If you crash, you kiss the damaged one for saving your knoggin' just before you toss it in the trash and buy another one). I'm in the market for plates, so I am trying to be devils advocate here as I'm trying to figure out which route to go...so please let me know what I am missing.

I guess where my head is that I am trying to find the best protection/price/weight...and much less concerned about something that will allow me to be shot 10 times. Again, this assumes that the S has not HTF and I can go out and buy new plates if they are now junk.

d-r
01-29-2014, 2:00 PM
You are correct. There is, however, a misconception with level IV plates that they are "better" than level III. Unlike soft armor, which goes from level I to IIIA in direct proportion to what they will stop (IIIA is a "better" armor than II for instance), the difference between III and IV is mostly the requirement for AP protection. I recommend III and III+ as a general rule because IV is just not worth the expense for the average person vice a warfighter that may need specific protection against penetrating rounds.

A "IV" plate is not necessarily "better", if it is thicker, more expensive, and less able to take multiple hits than a "III" plate. It all comes back to the specs. Level III is 6 rounds M80 ball @ 2750 fps/15 feet in a 6" circle. IV is *ONE* round of M2AP and lesser threats @ 2800 fps/30 feet, with no requirement to stop subsequent shots. Only you know which spec fits your requirements best.

Given the amount of energy that would be transferred after being hit by a rifle round, the wearer is going to...at the minimum, have the wind knocked out of them, possibly be bruised and potentially have some broken ribs, etc. Unless we are in a SHTF type of situation, my assumption would be that if I was protected by the armor, I would care less if I had to junk them after the hit and buy a new set (I equate this to a high quality motorcycle helmet...they are only good for one "hit" but you want the best possible. If you crash, you kiss the damaged one for saving your knoggin' just before you toss it in the trash and buy another one). I'm in the market for plates, so I am trying to be devils advocate here as I'm trying to figure out which route to go...so please let me know what I am missing.

I guess where my head is that I am trying to find the best protection/price/weight...and much less concerned about something that will allow me to be shot 10 times. Again, this assumes that the S has not HTF and I can go out and buy new plates if they are now junk.

armyvet1973
01-30-2014, 1:17 PM
Thank you for the post. God bless you and the USA

DeliveryBoy
02-07-2014, 8:38 AM
They are on my short list of new plates to evaluate. THE DBT KAP actually have me intrigued as well. Their construction method appears to be rather unique, in that they are using a ceramic composite "infusion" rather than monolithic panels. Such a construction method was suggested in IJIE (International Journal of Impact Engineering) several years back, and would be a step up in terms of ruggedness and durability.

The Tyr plates have been on my radar for a few months, and also look like they could be a good option. The only issue with both is of course, cost.

Will post more information after I have a chance to eval.

I look forward to the eval. I always enjoy popping into this thread once a month and catching up on the new armor testing and discussion. Thanks for the quality info.

d-r
02-27-2014, 2:35 PM
Thanks for all the kind words! I am starting a blog, and will have reviews, evals, tests, and various other tidbits regarding armor, as well as my opinions (as always). Please follow me at http://www.drmorgear.wordpress.com

smashycrashy
03-01-2014, 11:10 AM
Looking forward to the new blog, thanks for the link d-r.

DeliveryBoy
03-01-2014, 11:27 PM
Thanks for all the kind words! I am starting a blog, and will have reviews, evals, tests, and various other tidbits regarding armor, as well as my opinions (as always). Please follow me at http://www.drmorgear.wordpress.com

Enjoyed the first couple posts! I look forward to the rest!

neomedic
03-10-2014, 11:30 PM
Trying to decide on some steel plates.

Patriot Plates vs Flash Bainite AR500 steel plates? Which is recommended and why?

And is it better to pick up plates with line-x and then use a fabric spall guard or just go unline with a fabric spall guard. For me... weight savings is more important than increased weight with minimal benefit.

And do you have link to what fabric spall guard is recommended? The old link to the calguns thread about fabric spall guard is dead.

Thanks.

EDIT: Is there a link on where to get Flash Bainite AR500 steel plates?

d-r
03-11-2014, 12:21 AM
The Patriot plates are overall a better deal, and they are good folks over at Maingun Surplus.

I recommend a thin Line-X coat on all steel plates for corrosion protection, and it does not hurt to have a little extra spall mitigation. Spall guards should be worn with all steel plates, and many ceramic plates also benefit from them.

Updated links in thread for guards.

DeliveryBoy
03-19-2014, 4:26 PM
Trying to decide on some steel plates.

Patriot Plates vs Flash Bainite AR500 steel plates? Which is recommended and why?

And is it better to pick up plates with line-x and then use a fabric spall guard or just go unline with a fabric spall guard. For me... weight savings is more important than increased weight with minimal benefit.

And do you have link to what fabric spall guard is recommended? The old link to the calguns thread about fabric spall guard is dead.

Thanks.

EDIT: Is there a link on where to get Flash Bainite AR500 steel plates?


Yes, is there a link to where Flash Bainite plates can be purchased? Completely MIA on the interspace.

If they are truly as good as you say... I kinda want a pair...
Flash Bainite cannot be found (purchased)...
AR500 just doesn't seem appealing any more after FlashB

d-r
03-19-2014, 4:45 PM
It seems they are AWOL. And before that, they could only be purchased with the "picture frame" guards, which takes away the end user's choice.

Blackrain7557
03-27-2014, 11:55 PM
d-r I'd be interested in hearing what you have to say on this particular brand:

http://www.thetargetman.com/product-category/ballistic-body-armor-ar500-omega-level-iii/level-iv-composites/

Video of testing here:

http://youtu.be/OPG4NU7hO_g

Interested mostly in what you think of a ceramic plate between "Fiberglass reinforced plastic sheets". From what I saw of the video it seemed like the plate was able to take a substantial beating and I don't expect something like that to go through much more. But I do know that there is some concern with something that is trying to save weight in the case of body armor. I'd probably pair this with a soft backer as any other plate but wanted to see your thoughts on that particular style of manufacturing.

rero360
03-28-2014, 8:16 PM
When I was in Afghanistan I had a dude hitch a ride in my truck who's plate carrier looked like he didn't have any plates in it, and when I picked it up (as he was in the PHQ) it was insanely light, I squeezed it and sure enough, there were plates in it. When I asked him about it later, he said that his company bought them for him, I'm guessing they were about half an inch, not much different in thickness than my plates (.6) but much much lighter in weight.

DeliveryBoy
03-31-2014, 2:35 PM
It seems they are AWOL. And before that, they could only be purchased with the "picture frame" guards, which takes away the end user's choice.

Sad to see they are confirmed AWOL. (any thoughts on why/where?)
Glad to see my Google'fu is still strong.

wpage
04-08-2014, 6:16 PM
Whats a good kevlar solution good value and comfort?

Guerrilla Warfare
04-14-2014, 2:21 PM
Are the curved ergonomic plates worth it when it comes to the AR500 armor? Thanks in advance!

d-r
04-14-2014, 6:38 PM
Whats a good kevlar solution good value and comfort?

US Armor Enforcer Classic is still the best. Unfortunately, it seems the popularity of that model has resulted in a backlog. Two other alternatives are the Paraclete K3K3A and the CAT/DBT RVA3A. These would be the only other ballistic packages I would personally purchase if I had to go with commercial-only armor. Contact DBT and see if they can provide this package, they are very friendly folks.

Just in the interests of full disclosure, the Paraclete offering utilizes a fourth gen laminate called Kevlar XP.

Aside from those options, you have to go custom.

Sad to see they are confirmed AWOL. (any thoughts on why/where?)
Glad to see my Google'fu is still strong.

Not sure, but there are options that are as good, and very affordable. WWW.maingun.biz has the HHS plates available. Also, plates made with ARMOX 600 and ARMOX Advance promise to be superior materials for rifle plates, with the Advance able to stop M193 @ 3000 fps with 4.5mm thickness.

Are the curved ergonomic plates worth it when it comes to the AR500 armor? Thanks in advance!

Yes, if you are wearing them for any length of time. If they are to be kept as a "grab 'n go" setup, the flat plates are just fine. The curved plates also offer slightly better ballistic resistance to the the increased chance of a round yawing on impact.

When I was in Afghanistan I had a dude hitch a ride in my truck who's plate carrier looked like he didn't have any plates in it, and when I picked it up (as he was in the PHQ) it was insanely light, I squeezed it and sure enough, there were plates in it. When I asked him about it later, he said that his company bought them for him, I'm guessing they were about half an inch, not much different in thickness than my plates (.6) but much much lighter in weight.

Sounds like the very high end level IV standalones. Some of the current bleeding edge plates are as thin as .485" and stop M2AP or better. Price? Over $1K per plate. Still, if you need it, they are nice to have.

Master Blaster
04-22-2014, 2:20 PM
So what should you look for when choosing a carrier? Thickness of straps , nylon, ect..

d-r
04-23-2014, 1:04 AM
So what should you look for when choosing a carrier? Thickness of straps , nylon, ect..

That depends on intended role. If it is to be used only as a "bump in the night" rig, a Beez Combat Systems semi-MOLLE would be optimal. If for use concealed, their slick is good, as well as the TAG Slick carriers.

For full house plate carriers, the three I like the best currently are the Hardpoint Axis, The Mayflower APC, and the SKD PIG is still in the running.

Avoid cheap carriers made of poly, they are crap. Straps are usually able to be changed out for thicker or thinner, as your needs dictate.

crufflers
04-25-2014, 11:14 AM
Does anyone know a good place to order 10x12 spall pads? Cati armor has sets of four, but are there any alternatives that have two 10x12 pad sets without the 6x8's?

smashycrashy
04-25-2014, 11:36 AM
D-r makes custom spall liners shoot him a pm.

crufflers
04-25-2014, 7:48 PM
The Patriot plates are overall a better deal, and they are good folks over at Maingun Surplus.

I recommend a thin Line-X coat on all steel plates for corrosion protection, and it does not hurt to have a little extra spall mitigation. Spall guards should be worn with all steel plates, and many ceramic plates also benefit from them.

Updated links in thread for guards.

That's good then... I got my Main Gun set tonight and it is definitely a thin coating of Line-X on the front. The back is paint. Some of the other places I looked (Cati Armor for example) have a frag coating that is very thick. At least I don't have to paint these like bare plates. I do like the cut and curve of my bare Cati Armor plates though.

Overall I think the Condor CPC with the Main Gun plates will be a good backup carrier with spall liners added.

crufflers
04-25-2014, 8:07 PM
That depends on intended role. If it is to be used only as a "bump in the night" rig, a Beez Combat Systems semi-MOLLE would be optimal. If for use concealed, their slick is good, as well as the TAG Slick carriers.

For full house plate carriers, the three I like the best currently are the Hardpoint Axis, The Mayflower APC, and the SKD PIG is still in the running.

Avoid cheap carriers made of poly, they are crap. Straps are usually able to be changed out for thicker or thinner, as your needs dictate.

What do you think of the Shellback Banshee? It ends up at the same price as the Beez with padded options.

http://www.lapolicegear.com/shellback-banshee-rifle-platecarrier.html

d-r
04-26-2014, 8:45 PM
The Banshee (made by Shellback, there are two "Banshee" PC out there) is a good piece of kit.

dogabutila
05-01-2014, 2:24 AM
Thoughts on the Midwest Armor Venture series plates?

d-r
05-01-2014, 9:32 AM
Thoughts on the Midwest Armor Venture series plates?

The Venture FM3 is a pretty nice UHMWPE lightweight plate. If you need positive buoyancy (they float) and protection against M80, AK, and M193, they are the cat's meow. Remember they will not stop M855

The FM4 looks like it may be the best overall plate in the sub-1K per plate range (still kissing the 1K price point) that will stop pretty much any threat. Ceramic over UHMWPE, so there are still fragility issues, but profile is .5" thick, weight per plate is sub- 6 lb! Looks good, people. Keeping my eyes on this, will try to get my pennies saved and do a review (non-destructive for now! Not a millionaire).

Overall, I really like what Midwest Armor is doing. They offer a good range of options, from affordable and effective (the Guardian series) to plates that will compete favorably with the latest and greatest Ceradyne high-speed, low drag releases. If anybody is looking for a good place to purchase their armor, head over to Appalachian Training. Mike is a great guy to deal with!

Ajcrash
05-06-2014, 3:13 PM
A lot of great information here. I scored a pair of TAP Gamma plus plates recently (I wish I had bought them a year or so ago when they were abundant on eBay, had them on a watch list forever just never bought them). Anyways, now that I have the hard plates, I'm looking for backers. I understand the plates themselves are standalone; I'm considering them mainly as blunt trauma protection, as well as a bit of extra insurance.

Does anyone have some good recommendations? Presently I'm looking at the Spartan IIIA from The Targetman.

http://http://www.thetargetman.com/product/iiia-spartan-soft-body-armor-semi-flexible/

Thanks

CrossedRifles
05-08-2014, 3:56 AM
Looking to fill my Crye CPC with Level IV standalone plates.

Budget is $750 for F&R plates. Is this possible within the price range for ceramic plates? (If recommended) Made by a solid manufacturer? I quickly skimmed through this thread and most links were out of date / unavailable.

I have a high back Crye BLAST belt with it's default soft armor insert but I'm unsure what level it is to be honest. Crye doesn't specify and only says "NIJ frag and handgun protection" whatever that means. I also bought it used and I'm guessing/hoping it's kevlar since it can take a beating.

Would it be weird to run rifle plates for carrier and then soft armor in the hip area? better than no protection and the weight isn't really noticeable when the kit is comfortable. It is a world of difference between the issue IBA that's for sure.

d-r
05-08-2014, 4:51 PM
The only commercial backers that I can recommend with 100% certainty as containing 100% woven Kevlar aramid would be the Midwest MASS backers. Appalachian Training has these in-stock currently:

http://store.appalachiantraining.com/ProductDetails.asp?ProductCode=Midwest%2DBacker%2D MED

The Spartans contain UHMWPE, and so are no-go.

A lot of great information here. I scored a pair of TAP Gamma plus plates recently (I wish I had bought them a year or so ago when they were abundant on eBay, had them on a watch list forever just never bought them). Anyways, now that I have the hard plates, I'm looking for backers. I understand the plates themselves are standalone; I'm considering them mainly as blunt trauma protection, as well as a bit of extra insurance.

Does anyone have some good recommendations? Presently I'm looking at the Spartan IIIA from The Targetman.

http://http://www.thetargetman.com/product/iiia-spartan-soft-body-armor-semi-flexible/

Thanks

d-r
05-08-2014, 4:54 PM
Couple posts up, I mentioned the Midwest Level IV Guardians. $290 for a set:

http://store.appalachiantraining.com/ProductDetails.asp?ProductCode=GUARDIAN-IVTripleSet


Get a set of the MASS IIIA backers from the same place, and you are $260 under budget, with a good setup that can be used with or without plates.

Looking to fill my Crye CPC with Level IV standalone plates.

Budget is $750 for F&R plates. Is this possible within the price range for ceramic plates? (If recommended) Made by a solid manufacturer? I quickly skimmed through this thread and most links were out of date / unavailable.

I have a high back Crye BLAST belt with it's default soft armor insert but I'm unsure what level it is to be honest. Crye doesn't specify and only says "NIJ frag and handgun protection" whatever that means. I also bought it used and I'm guessing/hoping it's kevlar since it can take a beating.

Would it be weird to run rifle plates for carrier and then soft armor in the hip area? better than no protection and the weight isn't really noticeable when the kit is comfortable. It is a world of difference between the issue IBA that's for sure.

Ajcrash
05-09-2014, 10:08 AM
Excellent, thanks d-r. I'll check out a set. I've got a minimal amount of plate slop in my current PC, backers ought to solve that though. If not I' may take the plunge on SKD's PIG and run my current PC as a slick.

Thanks again for the great info you provide.

CrossedRifles
05-10-2014, 9:40 PM
Couple posts up, I mentioned the Midwest Level IV Guardians. $290 for a set:

http://store.appalachiantraining.com/ProductDetails.asp?ProductCode=GUARDIAN-IVTripleSet


Get a set of the MASS IIIA backers from the same place, and you are $260 under budget, with a good setup that can be used with or without plates.

Thanks again d-r. I can't tell whether you're telling me I should use both in conjunction of just run them separately. The first one you linked says standalone, but would it hurt at all to have IIIA backers?

d-r
05-11-2014, 9:30 AM
Thanks again d-r. I can't tell whether you're telling me I should use both in conjunction of just run them separately. The first one you linked says standalone, but would it hurt at all to have IIIA backers?

Always run plates with backers, regardless of which plates you use. The extra thickness is minimal compared with the additional peace of mind. When you don't need the plates, the backers provide pistol protection.

DeliveryBoy
05-13-2014, 1:30 PM
Is MissionTactical the only place to acquire TAP gamma plates these days?
http://missiontactical.com/level-iii-gamma-plus-stand-alone-sapi-rifle-plate.html
I'm kicking myself for not picking up a pair years ago when they were on my radar!

d-r
05-13-2014, 4:34 PM
Is MissionTactical the only place to acquire TAP gamma plates these days?
http://missiontactical.com/level-iii-gamma-plus-stand-alone-sapi-rifle-plate.html
I'm kicking myself for not picking up a pair years ago when they were on my radar!

Pretty much the only place to get them new. Ebay, they do occasionally turn up. The Midwest Guardian Multicurve may be replacing them as my top go-to recommendation, in terms of bang for buck ratio.

DeliveryBoy
05-15-2014, 3:14 PM
I really like the 5 lbs saving (between two plates) that TAP G provides compared to steel/midwest guardians... But You're absolutely right about the bang for the buck. 260 per plate is a bit steep compared to what they used to go for.

d-r
05-15-2014, 6:25 PM
Oh absolutely. The TAP Gamma multi is still the best dedicated III plate on the playground IMHO. The Guardians are great because they do give you IV level protection (and will be testing them shortly to see if they provide any sort of multi-hit durability vs. the standard IV "one and done" durability) at a previously unheard-of price point.

If they prove their mettle to soak up 3 or more M80 ball rounds after a level IV event, I will be pleased as punch. The extra 5# will be a worthwhile penalty in that case for those facing the potential of AP threats.

I really like the 5 lbs saving (between two plates) that TAP G provides compared to steel/midwest guardians... But You're absolutely right about the bang for the buck. 260 per plate is a bit steep compared to what they used to go for.

dogabutila
05-28-2014, 12:15 AM
The Venture FM3 is a pretty nice UHMWPE lightweight plate. If you need positive buoyancy (they float) and protection against M80, AK, and M193, they are the cat's meow. Remember they will not stop M855

The FM4 looks like it may be the best overall plate in the sub-1K per plate range (still kissing the 1K price point) that will stop pretty much any threat. Ceramic over UHMWPE, so there are still fragility issues, but profile is .5" thick, weight per plate is sub- 6 lb! Looks good, people. Keeping my eyes on this, will try to get my pennies saved and do a review (non-destructive for now! Not a millionaire).

Overall, I really like what Midwest Armor is doing. They offer a good range of options, from affordable and effective (the Guardian series) to plates that will compete favorably with the latest and greatest Ceradyne high-speed, low drag releases. If anybody is looking for a good place to purchase their armor, head over to Appalachian Training. Mike is a great guy to deal with!

Apparently they are saying the FM4 is .9'' thick now. Not nearly as attractive. I'm not sure it's Ceramic either.

d-r
05-28-2014, 9:43 AM
Apparently they are saying the FM4 is .9'' thick now. Not nearly as attractive. I'm not sure it's Ceramic either.

Correct, the initial release had incorrect info. It is a UHMWPE-focused plate with a strike face of Boron Carbide ceramic. The .90" thickness is less impressive, but overall, the plates are still quite amazing. You can think of them as more durable TAP GAMMA III+ that are level IV.

Master Blaster
06-02-2014, 4:30 PM
Would you pick 8x10
or 10 x12 plates??

d-r
06-03-2014, 8:52 AM
Would you pick 8x10
or 10 x12 plates??

For light kit, 8X10. Normal use, 10X12. If you are a bigger guy, 10X12 minimum.

neomedic
06-16-2014, 12:27 PM
D-r....PM inbound with some questions.

krisjon
06-28-2014, 11:45 PM
Seems as though the level IV standalones that bulletproofme are selling are good for more than one AP hit. Pretty impressive. Thoughts?

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=tt2Y1I4ZQ_A

d-r
06-29-2014, 4:32 PM
Seems as though the level IV standalones that bulletproofme are selling are good for more than one AP hit. Pretty impressive. Thoughts?

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=tt2Y1I4ZQ_A

IMHO, the test procedure was flawed- the armor was essentially free-standing, allowing it to fly backwards with each hit. Armor plates should be tested in secured plate carriers, attached to backings similar in consistency and inertia to a human body (clay or DuxSeal). In spite of this, the test was interesting.

I still would recommend the Midwest Guardian Multi-Curve plates instead, as they are still a better deal, and have shown to be just as durable to multiple hits.

d-r
06-29-2014, 7:29 PM
Maingun Surplus now offers curved Mil-A-46100 level III plates. I consider these to be the best practices choice in curved steel level III, from a price and durability standpoint:

http://www.maingun.biz/Body_Armor_Steel_Patriot_Plate_p/patplatepair10x12twocurve.htm

Lifeon2whls
06-30-2014, 2:16 PM
Well I have had the chance to play around with the AR500 plates (front/rear and side) and carrier and all I have to say is - man are they HEAVY! If SHTF and the neighborhood was a war zone, I would want something like this, but for a bump in the night, I would still be trying to lug the thing over my head and get the carrier strapped down by the time the guy was out of the house with my TV. Take the side plates out and it would be much more manageable but I still can't imagine myself wearing this rig all day long should something happen. I will say, it's comfortable when sitting.

This is the rig (http://www.calguns.net/calgunforum/showthread.php?t=915877)...the one we are giving away at the CGSSA events.

Untamed1972
06-30-2014, 3:52 PM
Steel- Tried and true, this material is great for stopping rounds (millions of steel targets can't all be wrong). It stops by deforming rounds. It can keep stopping them as long as the structure is uncompromised. Heat and mistreatment do not affect it. Drawbacks- it is heavy for its protective levels, it can rust if you chip the paint, and it spalls: https://drmorgear.wordpress.com/2014...e-spallsplash/

Question.....could you have the steel plates hot dip galvanized for corrosion protection?

I have some steel plates, and occasionally send some stuff for work out for galvanizing and thought of just including my plates in the next batch.

d-r
07-01-2014, 10:30 AM
Question.....could you have the steel plates hot dip galvanized for corrosion protection?

I have some steel plates, and occasionally send some stuff for work out for galvanizing and thought of just including my plates in the next batch.

I would recommend rattle-can Rusteoleum for bare steel. Media blast if you have the opportunity. Reason being, you can always touch up the coat wherever you are. Hot dip, while it would look really cool, would require a complete strip and recoat if it was ever chipped or compromised. Might be neat to try it though, post pics if you do. Have not heard of it being done on rifle plates before.

d-r
07-01-2014, 10:33 AM
Well I have had the chance to play around with the AR500 plates (front/rear and side) and carrier and all I have to say is - man are they HEAVY! If SHTF and the neighborhood was a war zone, I would want something like this, but for a bump in the night, I would still be trying to lug the thing over my head and get the carrier strapped down by the time the guy was out of the house with my TV. Take the side plates out and it would be much more manageable but I still can't imagine myself wearing this rig all day long should something happen. I will say, it's comfortable when sitting.

This is the rig (http://www.calguns.net/calgunforum/showthread.php?t=915877)...the one we are giving away at the CGSSA events.

ANY armor is going to seem heavy after you have worn it for a couple of hours. Add heat, and an hour seems like a week.

Steel is the heaviest of the "Big Three" materials. The advantages balance out some of the PITA. I would keep the side plates handy for situations that are high risk, but for a quick grab kit, even just a single front plate, and front and rear backers would be enough.

Untamed1972
07-01-2014, 2:01 PM
I would recommend rattle-can Rusteoleum for bare steel. Media blast if you have the opportunity. Reason being, you can always touch up the coat wherever you are. Hot dip, while it would look really cool, would require a complete strip and recoat if it was ever chipped or compromised. Might be neat to try it though, post pics if you do. Have not heard of it being done on rifle plates before.

Since I'm not in a "hot zone" I figured it would just be good for long term protection and storage. It's pretty durable, and inside a plate carried should protect it even more. So prolly the only thing that would chip it would be taking actually rounds, in which case corrosion protection it prolly gonna be the least of my worries at that point.

They also make "cold galvanizing" spray paint for recoating compromised areas.

Dunno....it was just a thought. Might just throw them in the batch next time I send some stuff out and let y'all know.

Untamed1972
07-01-2014, 2:05 PM
ANY armor is going to seem heavy after you have worn it for a couple of hours. Add heat, and an hour seems like a week.

I actually seem to notice more when I first put in on. I also have a some chainmail that I wear with a Ren Fair constume sometimes. It weights about 30lbs.....my body armor weighs about 26lbs without water or mags.

After about an hour I seem to acclimate to it and don't really notice it as much. But when I first put either on, it feels like someone is sitting on my chest and making it hard to breath.

Lugiahua
07-02-2014, 12:50 AM
The heat was far worse problem to me than weight in long term use. While there are products such as Cortac to improve ventilation, they also make the armor far less concealable.

smashycrashy
07-02-2014, 7:54 AM
After about an hour I seem to acclimate to it and don't really notice it as much. But when I first put either on, it feels like someone is sitting on my chest and making it hard to breath.

Check fit of the plate carrier, I shortened the shoulder straps so the plate is sitting right at the bottom of my throat (there is a pic earlier in the thread regarding proper plate placement I believe) and higher up my back for a more proper fit and the weight seemed more even front to back when I did that.

neomedic
07-02-2014, 11:11 AM
How are this side plates??

Level IV ICW 6" x 8" ballistic side plate from PPI. This puppy is a first quality ceramic plate with aramid (Kevlar) backing wrapped in a black cordura for protection from the elements. It is a svelte 3/4" thick, and weighs in at approximately 2.8 lbs.

http://i244.photobucket.com/albums/gg35/skdtactical/011b5f89-9ab6-4c10-ae0f-b56d7bacde31_zpsd8dfff1a.jpg

http://i244.photobucket.com/albums/gg35/skdtactical/1cc71e99-594f-47af-9c50-5f44114fc87b_zpsf5da0082.jpg

Mjollnir
07-05-2014, 1:40 AM
D-r, the mil a-46100 plates sold by main gun are 95.00 for the pair? It says "pair" on the listing. Seems like a great deal!

d-r
07-05-2014, 11:53 PM
I think it would be a great experiment. Please do. :)

Since I'm not in a "hot zone" I figured it would just be good for long term protection and storage. It's pretty durable, and inside a plate carried should protect it even more. So prolly the only thing that would chip it would be taking actually rounds, in which case corrosion protection it prolly gonna be the least of my worries at that point.

They also make "cold galvanizing" spray paint for recoating compromised areas.

Dunno....it was just a thought. Might just throw them in the batch next time I send some stuff out and let y'all know.

d-r
07-05-2014, 11:56 PM
Yes indeed, they are the best deal in town right now. Good steel!

D-r, the mil a-46100 plates sold by main gun are 95.00 for the pair? It says "pair" on the listing. Seems like a great deal!

Mjollnir
07-06-2014, 9:29 AM
Thanks d-r! Your knowledge is greatly appreciated... I've read through this thread more than once over the years, and we are blessed to have your insight:)

TacFan
07-06-2014, 11:41 AM
i just ordered the patriot curved 10x12 plates as well as the side 6x8 plates and all of them will be with line x. Total came to $182. Not bad ... a lot of the cost was in the lining with the liner else it would have been only $110.