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Discussion Starter #1
Finally...I have completed setting up a really wearable ballistic vest. It is perfect for low - medium threat environments - or for Mrs OldChap. I'm using Level IIIA Soft armor with Trauma Pad backing in 11X14" size in this one, which is nice because you don't need an abdominal plate. I went with a new supplier for the carrier. Good price and well made.


I like that it is all Velcro which makes it light and quiet. I also really like that you can easily wear this one under either a large T-shirt or a button down shirt. I got it in the 11X14 plate size, but it's $10 cheaper in the 10X12. I haven't weighed it, but I think it is less than 5 pounds or so. Like a pair of blue jeans with belt.

Contrast this one with almost 40 pounds for the non-concealable Level III+ LW equipped carrier. And that is without any AR and/or pistol mags and no pistol. Of course that one stops multiple hits of everything up to 30.06 AP (M2AP)


In the current atmosphere, I think everyone who might have to defend their home needs some protection. Be aware that there are some longish wait times for the steel armor.
 

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They make good stuff .. But I will add from my using it if you are big and tall it does not fit /cover all that well ..And they are not NIJ tested rated to that but not nij oked ..That does not mean much but if I was just getting one vest I would def get the NIJ rated vest they have as it is true soft armor style with more wrap around cover . My issue with these and most of the cheep add your own armor panel ones is the fact that they are as I note just a square block of armid or the like no wrap around ...



Dont get me wrong I like that carrier but if I was just getting one or two of them I would not go for that .

I would either get the concacble vest they make or the NIJ proofed one ..Yes more money but .....
 
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Discussion Starter #4 (Edited)
As you say though, Spartan only sells NIJ rated vests in packages at prices that are beyond what most people would want to spend. AR500 certifies everything Level III and above (individually purchased panels for a carrier) as NIJ certified. Their test laboratory results and methods are listed and videos of the testing are also available.

My heavy vest has side armor panels that cover pretty well for my size. I don't need the same protection I might need for everyday wear on the streets, and certainly not what I might need if I were going to war.

The light vest doesn't have side panels in it, but it is designed so you can add them if you want. The idea (for me) is to conceal the light vest so it isn't visible.

I would rather let people know that they don't have to spend $700+ on a vest that will offer a second chance in the kind of world we seem to be living in lately.

BTW Both Spartan and AR500 buy all their steel in the same grades from suppliers who must test it to specific standards. The spall treatments are pretty much the same as well although done in-house.
 

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As you say though, Spartan only sells NIJ rated vests in packages at prices that are beyond what most people would want to spend. AR500 certifies everything Level III and above (individually purchased panels for a carrier) as NIJ certified. Their test laboratory results and methods are listed and videos of the testing are also available.

My heavy vest has side armor panels that cover pretty well for my size. I don't need the same protection I might need for everyday wear on the streets, and certainly not what I might need if I were going to war. I would rather let people know that they don't have to spend $700+ on a vest that will offer a second chance in the kind of world we seem to be living in lately.

BTW Both Spartan and AR500 buy all their steel in the same grades from suppliers who must test it to specific standards. The spall treatments are pretty much the same as well.

True true ... But when the they have 20 % off sales it is a good deal .. And 400$ is way way cheep for a NIJ soft vest like that most other places if they sell to civilans which most I have found wont with out LEO paper work are 600-1000k .

But yes I agree for most people the basic one like you mention will be more then enough for most uses .. I only wanted to caution the size of it as for me the carrier runs very small and is well odd looking unless you have a heavy jacket on ... So just a fyi
 
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Discussion Starter #6
I agree. We used to have to have "armor drives" to help raise money for our officers, before the city mandated and budgeted them. And unfortunately, I'm not nearly as svelte as I used to be. Luckily the 11X14 plates cover a lot more than just the absolute vital areas.
 
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I agree. We used to have to have "armor drives" to help raise money for our officers, before the city mandated and budgeted them. And unfortunately, I'm not nearly as svelte as I used to be. Luckily the 11X14 plates cover a lot more than just the absolute vital areas.
Some agencies still used seems like 50lbs vest with the Plate as in (1) in ; )
H/D
 

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I agree. We used to have to have "armor drives" to help raise money for our officers, before the city mandated and budgeted them. And unfortunately, I'm not nearly as svelte as I used to be. Luckily the 11X14 plates cover a lot more than just the absolute vital areas.

Thats the other thing also most cop shopes make you buy NIJ rated armor so for anyone who has a job like that you would need NIJ armor

I should calify my point the carrier covers the vitals but due to it size it rides quite hide on big and tall so you look well weird like you have this big growth on your chest if you have it under your shit
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Some agencies still used seems like 50lbs vest with the Plate as in (1) in ; )
H/D
I said "plates", but in reality I'm not sure you call soft armor "plates". My light vest has soft 11X14 armor, the heavy one has steel.
 
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I said "plates", but in reality I'm not sure you call soft armor "plates". My light vest has soft 11X14 armor, the heavy one has steel.
SOFT body armor inserts are usually called "Panels". The carrier may also have a pouch for a smaller, and lighter trauma "plate."

My Level IV duty vest uses Ceramic plates...I spent a bit more and bought the "Lightweight" Level IV plates......along with a "First Spear" plate carrier. Its strange, every year it seems to get heavier.
 

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Discussion Starter #11 (Edited)
SOFT body armor inserts are usually called "Panels". The carrier may also have a pouch for a smaller, and lighter trauma "plate."

My Level IV duty vest uses Ceramic plates...I spent a bit more and bought the "Lightweight" Level IV plates......along with a "First Spear" plate carrier. Its strange, every year it seems to get heavier.
I understand that about weight. My Level III+ "Lightweight" plates are 6.5 pounds+ each. And adding to the confusion, I saw this on the AR500 site:
Size & Cut: 10" x 12" Advanced Shooters Cut (ASC), can be worn in conjunction with soft body armor plates
I wonder if they don't really have any standardized name for them?

And BTW...my Level IV Duty Vest used PAPER PLATES!

334123
 
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Discussion Starter #13

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School me on body Armor. I understand the ratings ll, lll, lv at least by reading on the net. So you have to have a plate carrier, plates, panels to go between plates and skin. Then size becomes a problem, I’m 6’3” 200lb of pure muscle......yea sure....but I’m fairly tall. So what is the price tag after all the “stuff” is added? If the carriers are just 1000d fabric I can make them.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
There are charts about the various levels of armor.

ar500armor.com

There is more to the plate carrier than you think. You can see them on the site above, or on this one...

spartanarmorsystems.com.

All you need is a T-shirt underneath the carrier. Typically, most folks put a trauma pad behind the armor in the plate carrier pouch.

Can't type much, I'm not on the computer.
 
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Discussion Starter #16
Now that is much better for typing. All you need is a plate carrier and whatever level protection plates you choose. Some carriers come as a package at a little better price. Or you can mix and match. Keep in mind that the level III and higher protection is steel, unless you go for uber expensive ceramic plates. The Level III+ Lightweight plates are not so heavy as to be a real burden. Check the details on the plates for weight.
 
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I would like to get body armor but I have no experience with it.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Comfortable and concealable body armor has been available for decades. You will find it right next to unicorn horns in your local store.
I am pleasantly surprised. This is actually comfortable AND concealable. If you tuck the shirt covering the carrier in, you'll look like a police officer - you'll have "armor lines" sort of like a woman gets "panty lines" but untucked, you can't really see it at all. I highly recommend you use the recommended Level IIIA soft armor in this one.


My other vest is Level III+ Lightweight and it would only be concealable if your tailor was Omar The Tentmaker. Not exactly comfortable either, but very reassuring.
 

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I am pleasantly surprised. This is actually comfortable AND concealable. If you tuck the shirt covering the carrier in, you'll look like a police officer - you'll have "armor lines" sort of like a woman gets "panty lines" but untucked, you can't really see it at all.
I thought woman gave up armored panties after the medieval age.
 
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