Update on my AR500 Armor project!

Update on my AR500 Armor project!

This is a discussion on Update on my AR500 Armor project! within the Carry & Defensive Scenarios forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; Just wanted to post an update of the idea I cooked up a ways back to upgrade my current armor carrier. I have a new ...

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Thread: Update on my AR500 Armor project!

  1. #1
    VIP Member Array Phaedrus's Avatar
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    Update on my AR500 Armor project!

    Just wanted to post an update of the idea I cooked up a ways back to upgrade my current armor carrier. I have a new low vis one coming tomorrow that holds standard plates, so maybe these will go in that, not sure yet. At any rate, here's where I'm at now.

    I have a US Palm Defender with one Level IIIa soft panel in the front. Pretty entry level, my first foray into body armor. It has mag pouches and a holster; my idea is to have it as a 'bump in the night' rig that can hold my HK USP45, a couple spare mags and a Surefire flashlight. Everything in one place, quick to don and offering some protection. Turns out there's plenty of room for 10" x 12" steel plates in there. I initially put the steel plates in the front and back panels of the carrier, with the stock kevlar plate over the front. My thinking is that it might stop a round on its own but mostly it would contain splatter. But I wanted to do something like the poster did in the thread I linked.

    So I picked up some 350 denier kevlar fabric, some Loktite spray adhesives and set out to wrap my plates. First minor hurdle, and one that I should have foreseen- anything made to stop bullets is probably gonna be tough to cut with regular scissors! So I picked up a pair of shears made for kevlar and went to work.

    Here's a few pics of what I have so far:









    Right now I have five layers IIRC. I have enough kevlar to make maybe 15 wraps; I will divide them between the two panels. Spall/splatter is probably a bigger deal on the front plate for a couple reasons. First off, I don't plan to clear my house if there's a break in but rather hunker down in a safe room. If I do have to confront an intruder chances are the threat will be in front of me given the layout of my home. Secondly there's more important body stuff on the front side; spatter there would hit my chin, neck, and arms, and maybe my legs. In back probably crap would possibly hit by butt/hips but probably not my legs or arms. The plan is to do maybe 8-9 layers on the front plate and 4-6 on the back.

    I realize a lot (most?) of you don't care much about armor but I think it's a sensible option, and it's kind of cool to monkey around with!

    One last note: The kevlar doesn't have to stop bullets! It's glued over Brinell 500 steel plate armor. The kevlar's job is just to contain bullet fragments and mitigate splash.
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    "When Fascism comes to America, it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying a cross." - Sinclair Lewis

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  2. #2
    Distinguished Member Array ErnieNWillis's Avatar
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    I have the same plates. Mine have the anti-spall coating. Have watched videos about it and with the (bedliner type) coating spall was very minimal.

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    How heavy are they?
    I haven’t heard any of the journalists who volunteered to be waterboarded asking to have their fingernails wrenched out with pliers, or electrodes attached to their genitals.

  4. #4
    TRX
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    Quote Originally Posted by Phaedrus View Post
    my idea is to have it as a 'bump in the night' rig that can hold my HK USP45, a couple spare mags and a Surefire flashlight. Everything in one place, quick to don and offering some protection.
    That sounds entirely reasonable to me; basically, a better version of the "tactical vest" idea; all your stuff in one place instead of gathering it up in the dark.

    I used to think the armor guys were a bit odd until I realized I'd been wearing armor for years, in my motorcycle jacket. Arm, shoulder, and back panels, anyway. Hmm. Perception change in progress...

    One last note: The kevlar doesn't have to stop bullets! It's glued over Brinell 500 steel plate armor. The kevlar's job is just to contain bullet fragments and mitigate splash.
    The plates don't have to stop them either. If they absorb enough energy to reduce the power of a 9mm or .40 down to .25 or .32 ACP when the bullet goes into your flesh, your survivability just went up a huge amount.

    Too many people seem to get wrapped up into the "but will it stop a .338 Lapua?" mindset, and when the answer is "no", they decide their Jimi Hendrix T-shirt is good enough.
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    VIP Member Array Phaedrus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by atctimmy View Post
    How heavy are they?
    I don't remember right off, maybe 4-5 lbs? The kevlar adds a very minimal amount of weight.
    "When Fascism comes to America, it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying a cross." - Sinclair Lewis

    “You can tell whether a man is clever by his answers. You can tell whether a man is wise by his questions.” - Naguib Mahfouz

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    VIP Member Array Phaedrus's Avatar
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    Okay, I got the front plate (the pictured one) finished- 8 layers of kevlar. I ended up doing 4 layers on the other plate. The issue I had was that I switched to Gorilla Glue...what a mess! I didn't read the label (of course) and didn't see it needs water to cure. So I wasted one layer before I figured out why it wasn't sticky. Of course by this time that plate was a mess. I wound up switching back to the spray glue. It worked great the first time but it was smelly and seemed to bind with the dust in my shop. I got a layer of it on my glasses and nothing would get it off. Thinking they were ruined anyways I tried Mineral Spirits. That did the trick!

    At any rate that first plate looks really nice. The other one, not so much. But they're just gonna go in the carrier, no extra points for appearance.

    I'll take a few more pics once it's all dry.
    "When Fascism comes to America, it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying a cross." - Sinclair Lewis

    “You can tell whether a man is clever by his answers. You can tell whether a man is wise by his questions.” - Naguib Mahfouz

  7. #7
    Senior Member Array ExaltedOne's Avatar
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    Update?

    Where did you find the kevlar?

  8. #8
    Senior Member Array ExaltedOne's Avatar
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    Never mind I found a place

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