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Thread: Body Armor

  1. #1
    Regular Member Jonathon Norris's Avatar
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    Body Armor - It's just another tool I wear/carry with me, along with my situational awareness, sidearm, spare mags, and non-lethal alt. (In my case, an extendable baton) It's just a IIa Paca vest to defeat the most common rounds of 9mm and below, and it's worn concealed. In most states, armor is legal for non-felons to wear openly or concealed.
    Anybody else out there taking advantage of it?

    Oh, and of course, my gf thinks I'm crazy. Just like some of ya'lls problems with carrying a BUG, and so on... :-)
    A wayfarer should not walk unarmed,
    But have his weapons to hand:
    He knows not when he may need a spear,
    Or what menace meet on the road.

    - Odin
    The Havamal

  2. #2
    Regular Member Jonathon Norris's Avatar
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    Forgot to mention the main point, I'm not a LEO. Any other non-leo, non-security personnel types out there who wear body armor is what I meant to ask.
    A wayfarer should not walk unarmed,
    But have his weapons to hand:
    He knows not when he may need a spear,
    Or what menace meet on the road.

    - Odin
    The Havamal

  3. #3
    Regular Member Dreamer's Avatar
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    It is legal for law-abiding citizens to purchase, possess, and wear body armour in all 50 states, with one minor hitch. In Connecticut, it must be a face-to-face sale (no mail order) unless you are LE or active duty military.

    In MD, it is perfectly legal to own and wear body armor if you are a law-abiding citizen. However, it IS illegal to wear body armor during the commission of a crime in MD (and in many other states as well). And Maryland law mandates that all persons with a prior CONVICTION for a crime of violence or a drug trafficking crime are prohibited from using, possessing, or purchasing bulletproof body armor without a permit issued by the Secretary of the
    Maryland State Police.

    NOTE: A permit to use, possess, or purchase bulletproof body armor is not required for persons not convicted of a crime of violence or a drug trafficking crime in MD.

    But if you wear it externally, you most likely WILL get hassled in states like MD, NY, CT, and CA and in Washington DC...

    I've considered purchasing and wearing body armor for some of the jobs I've had that were in dodgy areas. But as of today, I do not own, or wear body armor.

    While I was a contractor for the DOJ/NIJ back inthe 1990s I was involved in some of the NIJ Body Armor Testing rounds, and I had access to some very interesting data, footage, and witnessed many body armor tests at Quantico. There is a LOT of crap body armor on the "civilian" market--stuff that is expensive but still won't stop even small caliber handgun rounds. So if you're going to invest in body armor, I would suggest getting stuff that you know is "NIJ Certified". Their certification process is VERY rigorous, and if something gets NIJ Certification, it will be so over-engineered that you can rest assured that it will work in 99.999% of any situation you'll ever find yourself in, on the street. I don't agree with allthe NIJ criteria (like the FBI ammo testing criteria, some of them are just nonsensical) and he NIJ also bases their certification on warranty policies, and has ditched some VERY good armor based on technicalities (like the recently dropped "Dragon Skin" ceramic Level III armor, which exceeds all their performance criteria, their 5-year re-certification process was not "official enough" for NIJ, so they bounced it)...

    http://www.justnet.org/Pages/06_CPL.aspx

    By the way, I designed the logo and general overall interface for the "JustNet" website, and for NLECTC's newsletter "TechBeat" and received a National Association of Government Communicators "Blue Pencil" for my work...


    It is our cause to dispel the foggy thinking which avoids hard decisions in the delusion that a world of conflict will somehow mysteriously resolve itself into a world of harmony, if we just don't rock the boat or irritate the forces of aggression—and this is hogwash."
    --Barry Goldwater, 1964

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    Regular Member ODA 226's Avatar
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    Jonathon Norris wrote:
    Body Armor - It's just another tool I wear/carry with me, along with my situational awareness, sidearm, spare mags, and non-lethal alt. (In my case, an extendable baton) It's just a IIa Paca vest to defeat the most common rounds of 9mm and below, and it's worn concealed. In most states, armor is legal for non-felons to wear openly or concealed.
    Anybody else out there taking advantage of it?

    Oh, and of course, my gf thinks I'm crazy. Just like some of ya'lls problems with carrying a BUG, and so on... :-)
    YOU ARE NOT A LEOORA SECURITY PROFESSIONAL! YOUR GF THINKS YOU ARE CRAZY AND SO DO I!
    Bitka Sve Rešava!
    B-2-10 SFG(A)/ A-2-11 SFG(A) 1977-1994

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    Regular Member simmonsjoe's Avatar
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    Excellent resource DREAMER. Thanks for the link.
    illegal ≠ immoral legal ≠ moral
    [SIZE=1]"I never submitted the whole system of my opinions to the creed of any party of men whatever in religion, in philosophy, in politics, or in anything else where I was capable of thinking for myself. "Such an addiction is the last degradation of a free and moral agent." - Thomas Jefferson
    G19 Gen 4; Bersa Thunder 380; Sig Sauer P238; Kel-Tec su-16c

  6. #6
    Regular Member Jonathon Norris's Avatar
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    Lots of good info, Dreamer. One small thing is, it's called Dragon Skin instead of Dragon Scale. That stuff's truly awesome, rifle deafeating flexible armor. Santa? Are you lurking? :-P

    As far as being 'crazy', a lot of people would say that we are crazy for wanting to carry arms openly. It's not the same as one's a right and the other is just likely to help protect you. I don't really understand why armor has this particular stigma. It also helps in the event of car/motorcycle wrecks!
    A wayfarer should not walk unarmed,
    But have his weapons to hand:
    He knows not when he may need a spear,
    Or what menace meet on the road.

    - Odin
    The Havamal

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    Campaign Veteran GLOCK21GB's Avatar
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    Jonathon Norris wrote:
    Lots of good info, Dreamer. One small thing is, it's called Dragon Skin instead of Dragon Scale. That stuff's truly awesome, rifle deafeating flexible armor. Santa? Are you lurking? :-P

    As far as being 'crazy', a lot of people would say that we are crazy for wanting to carry arms openly. It's not the same as one's a right and the other is just likely to help protect you. I don't really understand why armor has this particular stigma. It also helps in the event of car/motorcycle wrecks!
    Dragon skin , about 4 - 5 thousand dollars each....:?
    http://youtu.be/xWgVGu3OR4U AACFI, Wisconsin / Minnesota Carry Certified. Action Pistol & Advanced Action pistol concepts + Urban Carbine course. When the entitlement Zombies begin looting, pillaging, raping, burning & killing..remember HEAD SHOTS it's the only way to kill a Zombie. Stockpile food & water now.

    Please support your local,county, state & Federal Law enforcement agencies, right ???

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    Regular Member 45acpForMe's Avatar
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    I have thought about whether and what body armor to buy at some point. I know ODA you may think it is crazy to wear every day. :-) I figure some of the body armor I have seen isn't that expensive and it may be worth a few bucks to keepfor a rainy day. (lead rain)

    After reading another thread about the Argentinian economic collapse, body armor is something useful. If you are afraid that society may collapse body armor is a plus.

  9. #9
    Campaign Veteran GLOCK21GB's Avatar
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    Most of us are not wealthy , I would suggest a Molle Plate carrier vest. like the one below. The level 4 stand alone plates , will absorb a few hits , they will not stop spall, the splatter after effect of a bullet hit. A vest and 2 ceramic SAPI or steel plates will cost between $ 300.00 - & 500.00

    Level 3 , will stop most pistol cartridges

    level 4 , will stop most rifle cartridges >> nothing stops a 50 cal or 338 lapua round, sorry.

    I have the Level 4 stand alone , Multi hit, ceramic plates , a little more expensive.
    http://youtu.be/xWgVGu3OR4U AACFI, Wisconsin / Minnesota Carry Certified. Action Pistol & Advanced Action pistol concepts + Urban Carbine course. When the entitlement Zombies begin looting, pillaging, raping, burning & killing..remember HEAD SHOTS it's the only way to kill a Zombie. Stockpile food & water now.

    Please support your local,county, state & Federal Law enforcement agencies, right ???

  10. #10
    Campaign Veteran GLOCK21GB's Avatar
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    vest , with molle pouches
    http://youtu.be/xWgVGu3OR4U AACFI, Wisconsin / Minnesota Carry Certified. Action Pistol & Advanced Action pistol concepts + Urban Carbine course. When the entitlement Zombies begin looting, pillaging, raping, burning & killing..remember HEAD SHOTS it's the only way to kill a Zombie. Stockpile food & water now.

    Please support your local,county, state & Federal Law enforcement agencies, right ???

  11. #11
    Regular Member simmonsjoe's Avatar
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    what about an affordable concealable level II or IIA recommendation? super light for everyday wear
    illegal ≠ immoral legal ≠ moral
    [SIZE=1]"I never submitted the whole system of my opinions to the creed of any party of men whatever in religion, in philosophy, in politics, or in anything else where I was capable of thinking for myself. "Such an addiction is the last degradation of a free and moral agent." - Thomas Jefferson
    G19 Gen 4; Bersa Thunder 380; Sig Sauer P238; Kel-Tec su-16c

  12. #12
    Regular Member Jonathon Norris's Avatar
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    Depends on how affordable you want to go.. Ebay actually has a good selection of vests, but the used ones are usually out of the manufacturer's warranty, which is to say, more than 5 years old. I got my used PACA level IIA vest for about $100 at a gun show here in Birmingham, Alabama, and have worn it every day since with no problems. It was police surplus and has undoubtedly seen better days. Of course, you could always buy new from a company like Second Chance or ABA, and it'll be probably be $300-400.
    A wayfarer should not walk unarmed,
    But have his weapons to hand:
    He knows not when he may need a spear,
    Or what menace meet on the road.

    - Odin
    The Havamal

  13. #13
    Regular Member Dreamer's Avatar
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    Jonathon Norris,

    If you got your body armor second-hand, you probably need to replace the ballistic material. Most flexible body armor has a limited lifespan, and if it was not properly cared for, it will give you about the same protection as a heavy denim coat...

    If it's got layers of Kevlar, it is more susceptable to UV (improperly stored in direct sunlight or under strong florescent lights), chlorine (improper washing) and sweat (salt contains chlorine, which is Kevlar's second worst enemy next to UV).

    If it's got "SpectraShield" as it's "bullet resistant" material, it should have a much better lifespan and resistance to abuse. SpectraShield is essentially multiple layers of Spectra ballistic fiber set at 90° angles, impregnated with flexible resin, and then sandwiched between very strong layers of polyethylene film. It's much thinner and more flexible than traditional woven Kevlar, and provides better protection for much less weight and bulk, BUT it breathes like a plastic leaf bag. However, the polyethylene film protects the kevlar fibers from UV and Chlorine, so it greatly extends the useable lifespan of flexible body armor...

    Some Level II and IIA vests are built with removeable panels, and if the one you have is like that, you might want to replace your materials if they are the old-school type of woven Kevlar. But a lot of th eolder vests have the ballistic material sewn in, and would require that you send them back to the manufacturer to replace the material...
    It is our cause to dispel the foggy thinking which avoids hard decisions in the delusion that a world of conflict will somehow mysteriously resolve itself into a world of harmony, if we just don't rock the boat or irritate the forces of aggression—and this is hogwash."
    --Barry Goldwater, 1964

  14. #14
    Regular Member ODA 226's Avatar
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    45acpForMe wrote:
    I have thought about whether and what body armor to buy at some point. I know ODA you may think it is crazy to wear every day. :-) I figure some of the body armor I have seen isn't that expensive and it may be worth a few bucks to keepfor a rainy day. (lead rain)

    After reading another thread about the Argentinian economic collapse, body armor is something useful. If you are afraid that society may collapse body armor is a plus.
    I have 6 different vests that I've acquired over the years...3 sets of 3A Point Blank tactical and Breacher vests, one 2A Concealable vest, one Interceptor 3A vest with front and back SAPI plates and a Paraclete 3A with front and back SAPI plates.

    I've always hated body armor...it's heavy, hot and will make anyday miserable, especially in Iraq during August with 145 degree heat.

    I think that any civilian that wears body armor everyday needs to have his head examined. He's either paranoid or a potential cop-impersonator.

    Yeah, it's good kit to have just in case, but it really should be left stored and not worn everyday.
    Bitka Sve Rešava!
    B-2-10 SFG(A)/ A-2-11 SFG(A) 1977-1994

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    McX
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    Regular Member simmonsjoe's Avatar
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    McX wrote:
    The only thoughts I could offer here are: When I was aquiring my home emergency, and defense supplies, the gun store owner showed me some body armor. An interesting option, but I chose not to aquire it. My reason was to keep my humanity intact. I would feel somewhat "invincible" in body armour, therefor prone to do something I shouldn't. I prefer the equal (armed) but level playing field. Fear of my safety and mortality will make sure I take steps to protect myself (retreat, retreat, retreat), rather than boldy go.
    Hear Hear!

    And yet you have a Dirty Harry avatar.:quirky
    illegal ≠ immoral legal ≠ moral
    [SIZE=1]"I never submitted the whole system of my opinions to the creed of any party of men whatever in religion, in philosophy, in politics, or in anything else where I was capable of thinking for myself. "Such an addiction is the last degradation of a free and moral agent." - Thomas Jefferson
    G19 Gen 4; Bersa Thunder 380; Sig Sauer P238; Kel-Tec su-16c

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    Regular Member Michigander's Avatar
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    ODA 226 wrote:
    I think that any civilian that wears body armor everyday needs to have his head examined. He's either paranoid or a potential cop-impersonator.

    Yeah, it's good kit to have just in case, but it really should be left stored and not worn everyday.
    Half a dozen or so lawful Michigan OCers have been drawn on by police. I've not had it happen to me, but it's happened a lot. In that situation, I'd want a vest. I don't have one, because I really can't justify the expense, but I think it's a smart thing for an urban OCer to have, particularly in a dangerous area or a non gold star state.

    Even if the police aren't going to pose a serious problem, there is always the remote possibility of getting attacked by a lunatic who wants to kill or maim you and steal your gun.

    There would probably be some merit to calling it ridiculous grand standing to wear exposed body armor to the grocery store, movies, or a PTA meeting, but I don't think it's fair to bad mouth someone for using it if they want to.

    It could be argued that the odds of actually getting shot and needing the vest are so small that it's not worth doing. But it could also be argued that you'll almost definitely never need to shoot someone, so it's not worth carrying.

    Answer every question about open carry in Michigan you ever had with one convenient and free book- http://libertyisforeveryone.com/open-carry-resources/

    The complete and utter truth can be challenged from every direction and it will always hold up. Accordingly there are few greater displays of illegitimacy than to attempt to impede free thought and communication.

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    It all comes down to personal choice. In cool weather I ride my bike with a jacket ( with body armour ) , jeans , boots, gloves & a helmet. But I have taken a quick trip to the store in the summer barefoot, tshirt, & shorts. Not smart but my choice.

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    Regular Member Gunslinger's Avatar
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    5.56 Armor Piercing Incendiary rounds are now readily available. Body armor or wearing a piece of cardboard have the same results. 5.7MM metal inserted rounds will punch through it easily. A .44magnum round to the heart--even if it doesn't penetrate, will kill you by cardiac shock. If you know the BG will be shooting a .38 spcl, fine. But how do you know what you may face?
    "For any man who sheds his blood with me this day shall be my brother...And gentlemen now abed shall think themselves accursed, they were not here, and hold their manhoods cheap whilst any speaks who fought with us on Crispin's day." Henry V

  20. #20
    McX
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    Campaign Veteran GLOCK21GB's Avatar
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    Gunslinger wrote:
    5.56 Armor Piercing Incendiary rounds are now readily available. Body armor or wearing a piece of cardboard have the same results. 5.7MM metal inserted rounds will punch through it easily. A .44magnum round to the heart--even if it doesn't penetrate, will kill you by cardiac shock. If you know the BG will be shooting a .38 spcl, fine. But how do you know what you may face?
    YUP, I have 2000 rounds of 5.56 SS109 Green tip steel core , them will poke holes through both sides of a vest ...but. I would rather be wearing body armor than NOT. Just in case it's a survivable Misplaced Rifle / pistol round.
    http://youtu.be/xWgVGu3OR4U AACFI, Wisconsin / Minnesota Carry Certified. Action Pistol & Advanced Action pistol concepts + Urban Carbine course. When the entitlement Zombies begin looting, pillaging, raping, burning & killing..remember HEAD SHOTS it's the only way to kill a Zombie. Stockpile food & water now.

    Please support your local,county, state & Federal Law enforcement agencies, right ???

  22. #22
    Regular Member Jonathon Norris's Avatar
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    Just as expected, some good feedback and some derision. In closing, wear what you're comfortable with. I, for one, will have my vest on everyday. Along with my flashlight, boots, and seatbelt. But then again, I'm paranoid, so I'll probably never need those either.

    Carry On!
    A wayfarer should not walk unarmed,
    But have his weapons to hand:
    He knows not when he may need a spear,
    Or what menace meet on the road.

    - Odin
    The Havamal

  23. #23
    Regular Member ODA 226's Avatar
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    Jonathon Norris wrote:
    Just as expected, some good feedback and some derision. In closing, wear what you're comfortable with. I, for one, will have my vest on everyday. Along with my flashlight, boots, and seatbelt. But then again, I'm paranoid, so I'll probably never need those either.

    Carry On!
    And don't forget to drink two tall glasses of delicious, refreshing milk everyday!
    Bitka Sve Rešava!
    B-2-10 SFG(A)/ A-2-11 SFG(A) 1977-1994

  24. #24
    Campaign Veteran GLOCK21GB's Avatar
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    ODA 226 wrote:
    Jonathon Norris wrote:
    Just as expected, some good feedback and some derision. In closing, wear what you're comfortable with. I, for one, will have my vest on everyday. Along with my flashlight, boots, and seatbelt. But then again, I'm paranoid, so I'll probably never need those either.

    Carry On!
    And don't forget to drink two tall glasses of delicious, refreshing milk everyday!
    if it's chocolate OK
    http://youtu.be/xWgVGu3OR4U AACFI, Wisconsin / Minnesota Carry Certified. Action Pistol & Advanced Action pistol concepts + Urban Carbine course. When the entitlement Zombies begin looting, pillaging, raping, burning & killing..remember HEAD SHOTS it's the only way to kill a Zombie. Stockpile food & water now.

    Please support your local,county, state & Federal Law enforcement agencies, right ???

  25. #25
    Regular Member ODA 226's Avatar
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    Glock34 wrote:
    ODA 226 wrote:
    Jonathon Norris wrote:
    Just as expected, some good feedback and some derision. In closing, wear what you're comfortable with. I, for one, will have my vest on everyday. Along with my flashlight, boots, and seatbelt. But then again, I'm paranoid, so I'll probably never need those either.

    Carry On!
    And don't forget to drink two tall glasses of delicious, refreshing milk everyday!
    if it's chocolate OK
    Sugar free chocolate?
    Bitka Sve Rešava!
    B-2-10 SFG(A)/ A-2-11 SFG(A) 1977-1994

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