Military body armor

Discussion in 'Range Report' started by TankTop, May 3, 2015.

  1. TankTop

    TankTop Well-Known Member Supporter

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    So a friend came across some military body armor that was being thrown out do to wear and tear. There's no ballistic plates and he said the stitches are coming apart in multiple places so it's no good for protection. I guess that leaves target practice the only logical use for it. I think I'll start with the XDs9, then should I go for the AR or skip it and go straight to the AK? These are important decisions and help would be appreciated =)
     
  2. MisterMcCool

    MisterMcCool Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Sorta pointless without the plates :confused:
     

  3. TankTop

    TankTop Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Does it suck that much?
     
  4. MisterMcCool

    MisterMcCool Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I don't want to hurt anyone's feelings but a bulletproof vest without the bulletproof plates is just a vest.
     
  5. TankTop

    TankTop Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Kinda sounds like a challenge, maybe a couple weeks but I'll post my results with pictures. Let's see how well our boys are protected, or not...
     
  6. TekGreg

    TekGreg Lifetime Supporting Member Lifetime Supporter

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    Be sure exactly what subject matter we're discussing. "Ballistic Vests" are those softer vests used by police officers and some civilians as daily wear to protect themselves from handgun fire. Military vests are typically called "Plate Carriers" and are themselves NOT bullet resistant, but have large pockets for thick, hard ceramic SAPI (Small Arms Protective Insert) plates which provide protection against military rifle fire. Be sure to differentiate between the two as they are very different in protection and use. :)
     
  7. SSGN_Doc

    SSGN_Doc Well-Known Member

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    Also, Flak jackets and vests fall under military body armor, but we're not designed to stop bullets. By hey were made to stop low velocity, irregular shaped pieces of metal, like shrapnel. Some may stop a small range of pistol bullets some times, but it was still not their original purpose. And they don't stop knives in a stabbing motion, as a couple of Marines found out, just horsing around.
     
    Last edited: May 5, 2015
  8. artbrownsr

    artbrownsr Forum Chaplain Lifetime Supporter

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    I was ignorant of this, as I thought the military vest was a kevlar based bullet resistant vest that ALSO had plates.
     
  9. Sniper03

    Sniper03 Supporting Member Supporter

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    Tank,

    In your testing you will probably find it will stop the 9mm with little problem. However there are few vests to my knowledge that will stop a rifle round like the 223/5.56, 7.62X39, 7.62X51 or others without the plates. Anyone believing that they will stop rifle rounds without the plate would soon have a real shock. Just for additional information, the proper covered plates is a very critical issue as well. We did a test one time with a vest with plates in it using those foam heads from a beauticians school. And when the vest and plates were shot with a 7.62X51 round the shrapnel from the bullet shaved the face off of the dummy!:eek:

    03
     
  10. JonM

    JonM Moderator

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    most common is the vietnam era flak vest still in use. stops blunt force slashing and shrapnel is not protective against stabbing or 9mm+ cartridges. this vest is excellent for riot duty especially if combined with the civilian vest

    civilian vest is in wide use by mp forces same as flak but lighter and no protection from blunt force will stop up to 357mag has pocket for optional trauma plate to stop breast breakage from 357+ cartridges. plate is not rated for rifle.

    plate carrier, no protection without single use plates rated for 7.62x39 and long range 7.62x54r as used by long distance snipers
     
  11. robocop10mm

    robocop10mm Lifetime Supporting Member Lifetime Supporter

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    The Vietnam era flak vests (OD green) had very limited usefulness against bullets. The later PASGT vests (Camo) were Kevlar and had decent bullet resistance. I have tested these and they stopped just about anything short of .357 Sig FMJ.

    There were some Kevlar/hard plate vests used that were rifle rated and had decent coverage for lover rated threats (handguns). Currently, the "plate carrier" is most common. Ballistic nylon vest designed to carry the SAPI plates front and back. Some had pockets for plates/inserts on the sides. Mostly, these are for direct shots from rifles. They will easily stop most rifle rounds. Multi-hit plates can withstand (I believe) 5 shots w/o failing.

    Early ceramic plates self destructed in defeating the incoming projectile. the sharp, shattering ceramic destroyed the bullet causing it to fragment. If dropped, they can shatter. Steel plates are the most cost effective way to go. They are heavier, cheaper, but not fragile.
     
  12. Threetango

    Threetango Audentes Fortuna Iuvat Supporter

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    I also tested them.
    Although heavy and hot in places like Mogadishu I always kept mine zipped.;)

    [​IMG]
     
  13. MisterMcCool

    MisterMcCool Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Major Dad :D
     
  14. TekGreg

    TekGreg Lifetime Supporting Member Lifetime Supporter

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    Kudos to you for admitting it! So many people try to "fake it until they make it," but this isn't the best way to learn. But there are other issues that add to the confusion that are to blame as well.

    One is the use of "bulletproof vest," "plate carrier," "flack jacket" and other appellations interchangeably by the media just as they use "clip" and "magazine." While he latter example both feed ammunition into a action, they are specifically different.

    There is also the problem of usage of the term "trauma plates." The current military use is a "plate carrier" (which is not made of a bullet resistant materials) that holds two large SAPI plates to cover most of the body. These plates are so large and heavy they protect soldiers from rifle fire. The "bulletproof vest," or, more accurately, "bullet-resistant vest" is made from materials, such as Kevlar, that will slow and possibly stop pistol ammunition. These vests have ratings that determine the maximum ammunition they are guaranteed to stop, from 9mm/.38 SPC up to .44 MAG. Many of these vests are equipped with an exterior pocket centered on the chest and back that can be supplemented with a different kind of "trauma plate." These can be as small as 8"X10" and help to enhance protection of the vest when needed. These plates are smaller, flatter and much lighter than the SAPI plates. The difference here is that the trauma plate is optional and not required for protection from gunfire, it simply enhances the vest's ability.

    So this becomes a problem like so many others in that the media constantly confuses usage and does nothing to clarify terminology. We are constantly trying to untangle the confusion and, luckily, we have forums like this to help do so. :) the best thing we can do is to learn things like this ourselves and then use the right terms in our own speech and help others to understand the difference.
     
    Last edited: May 8, 2015
  15. artbrownsr

    artbrownsr Forum Chaplain Lifetime Supporter

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    Well if you ignore your(I, My) ignorance the results is stupidity or something similar.
    I want to learn as much as possible and I believe my dad had it right, "When you're too old to learn, you're just too blamed old!"
    Likewise if I give info I intend for it to be the best info I have at hand, and generaly give room for discussion to correct any mistakes, of clarify any confusion.
    This is what I appreciate about YOUR POST you have tried to clarify the info.
     
  16. Threetango

    Threetango Audentes Fortuna Iuvat Supporter

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    Funny you should write that.
    More than one person including my wife has said the Gerald McRaney and I look alike. ;)
     
  17. locutus

    locutus Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Never wore the military vests, so can't comment on them.

    The LE vests we wore were rated by "threat level." 1, 2A,2,3A and 3. My dept issued level 2. They were good for handgun rounds up to about 1400 FPS.

    Trauma plates were basically padding to prevent severe bruising and/or broken ribs/clavicles caused by "blunt force trauma."

    They would stop .357 magnums with 158 grain bullets, but 125 grainers sometimes penetrated due to their extra velocity.

    These were rated by NIJ (National Institute of Justice) standards.

    My dept issued level 2.

    They were adequate since the bad guys carried .38s, 380s, and 32s, 99.9 percent of the time.

    I haven't worn one for over 20 years, so I don't know what they're using today.

    G30, Robo, what do "youse gize" wear today?
     
  18. TankTop

    TankTop Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I haven't seen my buddy so i don't have the vests in hand but i think they are level 2 LE style but they can also hold plates.
     
  19. MisterMcCool

    MisterMcCool Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Oh, well then that will be fun.
     
  20. locutus

    locutus Well-Known Member Supporter

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    If they're older level 2 LE vests, the pockets were designed for "trauma plates," not armor plates

    NIJ Ballistic Protection Levels

    Bullet proof vests are designed to stop a bullet by trapping it as it attempts to pass through the vest. The bullet is caught in a web of fibers within the vest, and then flattened until it comes to a halt.

    They come in 2 main protection levels, NIJ Level II vests that are designed to stop normal handgun rounds, and NIJ Level IIIa vests that will stop up to high powered Magnum rounds. The NIJ has developed standards that help users to select the most suitable type of body armor for their needs, detailing exactly what ballistic protection each level will provide.

    NIJ Level II

    NIJ Level IIIa
     
    Last edited: May 13, 2015