Chest rigs and vests for big guys?

Chest rigs and vests for big guys?

This is a discussion on Chest rigs and vests for big guys? within the Related Gear & Equipment forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; I'm not interested in buying or in the market for one, but I've always wondered what bigger guys like myself do if they want to ...

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Thread: Chest rigs and vests for big guys?

  1. #1
    Distinguished Member Array Chuck808's Avatar
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    May 2013
    Tampa, FL

    Chest rigs and vests for big guys?

    I'm not interested in buying or in the market for one, but I've always wondered what bigger guys like myself do if they want to find any of this equipment. Clothes shopping is a pain for me. I'm 6'5 and about 295lbs with some huge shoulders (almost as wide as a standard doorway).

    I see many of the vests and plate carriers come in diffferent sizes, but a vague "XL" rating doesn't tell me much. An XL tshirt looks like a bib on me. I generally wear a 3X, but sometimes a 2X in larger fitting shirts. Would a plate carrier or tac vest in the largest size available fit a guy my size properly?

    Just seems like most guys you see wearing this stuff are 5'7-6'2. Just asking this question out of curiousoty. Not actually looking to buy one.

  2. #2
    VIP Member
    Array ccw9mm's Avatar
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    Jul 2006
    I've always found it most useful when clothing makers note the specific measurements of a garment. Every garment is different. Even many vendors typically show only the generic shirt/pants sizing charts, sometimes narrowed by maker, almost never narrowed to that specific garment. I, too, have found many of the generically sized items to be woefully deficient as compared to other garments in that same labeled size.

    About the best measurements I've found:

    • The length from shoulder seam to shoulder seam (left to right, over the back of the neck/collar area.

    • The width of the garment from armpit to armpit. Roughly double to get a reasonable estimate on a generous fit, though somewhat smaller might well fit you a bit better (depends on the person).

    • The width of the garment just above the belt line;

    • And, height, from the back of the neck/collar area to the tail.

    If these are on, as measured on the actual garment, I almost always find it fits decently well. Irrespective of what the label says.
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  3. #3
    Member Array eipo's Avatar
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    Dec 2011
    Ive had to start looking at actual measurements of clothing, the generic xl/3xl sizing doesn't work for me. I am 6'4, 275 with relatively short (31" inseam) and long torso. So I range between 2xl and 3xl, but fall on neither.

  4. #4
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    Array ppkheat's Avatar
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    May 2007
    You might need to meet with a good boilermaker or fabrication shop !

    Seriously, good luck on your quest; call some of the vest manufacturers and see what they have to say.
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  5. #5
    VIP Member Array 5lima30ret's Avatar
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    May 2013
    Gulf Coast of Alabama
    Although I wear a size 42 we had guys on the department that were your size and bigger. We used Second Chance vests which I highly recommend! Their rep came to the department and measured everyone and they tailored them to fit. We had a 210lb officer on my watch that got thrown through a plate glass window by a burglar high on crack. The officer was not seriously injured no doubt due to his Second Chance vest that had large shards of glass imbedded in it!
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