Watch: Learn To Build Improvised Body Armor Ahh, the plate carrier. It’s something many preppers watch from the periphery. Looking at body armor is a powerful moment in your life as a human being. That is particularly true if you have been a civilian all of your life. I liken it to looking at the …
Body Armor for the Prepper For me body armor is one of those purchases that is on the periphery. I know that I am not alone. The idea of body armor is alluring and the fact that its used by police and military are a testament to its effectiveness. This article is one of those …
Body armor life saving tactical gear! Forrest & Kyle “The Prepping Academy” Audio in player below! Hey guys and gals, on this episode of “The Prepping Academy” we’re covering fun life saving tactical gear. That’s right, we are talking body armor. We have a special guest expert on this topic joining us in this show. It’s going … Continue reading Body armor life saving tactical gear!
How To Build A DIY Ballistics Plate Body Armor
Today I have not one but two youtube videos for you. You get a DIY build video on How To Build A DIY Ballistics Plate Body Armor and then the test shooting of that DIY ballistics plate.
I really want a real body armor plate. I also want to shoot the hell out of one. There in lies my problem. If I had a ballistics plate, like the great guys at AR500 (hint hint) I would want it for a SHTF scenario. But I also want to try to destroy one as well.
DIY 2 Survive!
My solution is to build and show you How To Build A DIY Ballistics Plate Body Armor. Will it be as good as a professionally made one? Nope. Will it stop a bullet? Hell yes, it will! I don’t recommend you building one of these and going out to fight ISIS. In a SHTF I would wear one of my DIY ballistic plates over wearing nothing.
The cost for this was around $30. I used a steel I-beam piece, a ceramic floor tile, duck tape and a can of plastidip. This thing is heavy as shit. And tough as a hell.
Shooting The DIY Plate Armor
The second Video is Couch Potato Mike and I shooting the ballistic plate. Now that you know How To Build A DIY Ballistics Plate Body Armor it’s time to destroy it. For the $20~30 bucks I spent building this DIY body armor it was money well spent. No bullets got through the plate. The ceramic tile was demolished. And shrapnel went everywhere.
So although no vital organs would be ventilated you would likely be shredded from the shrapnel. The pastidip did not work as well as I had wanted. For version 2.0 I will use a truck bed spray on liner. If you want to buy one I found the Cheapest One on amazon. To me $80 to shoot is still pricey.
Enjoy these videos. Go build a DIY plate armor for yourself. If you have any build suggestions drop them in the comments!
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(DR BONES SAYS: From time to time, we post articles from aspiring writers in the field of medical preparedness. This time, our guest author is Chris Taylor of SAFEGUARD body armor who gives a top ten countdown of important things to know about ballistic protection. And now, Chris’s article ).
Preparedness is no easy task; it requires an understanding of the situations you will find yourself in and the methods by which you can survive them. The most important thing to safeguard is your safety, as only by being properly protected can you keep yourself alive.
Proper protection can mean a number of different things, from first aid, to self-defense. However, an often overlooked method of keeping oneself safe is by employing body armor. Bullet proof vests are more accessible and protective than ever, and yet there are still a number of important things to understand before grabbing the nearest vest. Here are the top ten most important aspects of body armor everyone should know:
10.) Body Armor is Available for Everyone
Body armor usually conjures up images of high-visibility protective vests worn by the Police, or ultra-protective tactical armor worn by SWAT teams and the Military. Similarly, many assume that these products are difficult to obtain, and are only reserved for these people. While there are some restrictions on how body armor may be purchased and used in some areas (check local regulations before you purchase), body armor is available for anyone to purchase and wear. Indeed, anyone who faces the threat of attack or injury should consider a protective vest, as it could help save their life.
9.) Body Armor covers a lot of products
As we’ve seen above, body armor refers to a wide range of protective clothing; everything from stab proof vests to helmets is considered body armor, and it can be difficult to know exactly what you need and what you are getting. The products can be loosely grouped into ‘soft armors’ and ‘hard armors’, depending on the materials they use to offer protection. However, within each of these groupings there are variations that need to be considered.
8.) Different threats mean different protection…
These variations exist in order to combat different threats, as certain weapons or attacks require different materials to provide protection. For example, bullet proof vests cannot protect against many stab wounds, which cannot protect against spike attacks like ice picks. Similarly, ‘soft’ bullet proof vests cannot protect against high-velocity ammunition. To add to the confusion, many vests meant to protect injury from sharp objects also come with ballistic protection. While this will be discussed later, it is important first to know what threats you need protection against; if you will be facing rifles, you need armor with rigid plates. If you will be facing edged weapons, you need armor with stab protection. If you are facing spiked weapons, you need spike protection. All of these protections can be found in addition to ballistic protection.
7.) Not completely bulletproof
However, even a bullet proof vest is not completely bullet proof. There is no such thing as complete protection against a bullet, particularly when bullets come in all shapes and sizes. A bullet proof vest will certainly increase your chances of surviving an attack involving a firearm, but it should never replace caution and diligence.
(DR. BONES SAYS: EVEN THE BEST VESTS WON’T PROTECT YOU FROM THE FORCE OF THE BULLET. BLUNT TRAUMA FROM IMPACT AGAINST THE VEST MAY BREAK RIBS, COLLAPSE LUNGS, AND CAUSE INTERNAL BLEEDING)
While no vest can offer 100% guarantee against bullets, vests at different levels offer some assurance against certain ammunition types. Ballistic protection is tested and graded by the National Institute of Justice, which assigns ‘levels’ to bullet proof vests. These NIJ Levels outline exactly what threats a vest can protect against. This means that vests at lower levels cannot protect against higher caliber ammunition, whereas higher levels can offer greater protection. The highest level of ‘soft armor’ available is Level IIIa, which will protect against the vast majority of handgun ammunition. The highest level of ballistic protection available is Level IV, which is only achievable with rigid plates, and can protect against even armor-piercing ammunition.
5.) How it works
Many do not know exactly how a bullet proof vest provides protection, and understanding how the materials involved work helps distinguish between the different levels and types available. ‘Soft armor’ uses fabrics like Kevlar, which have an incredibly high strength-to-weight ratio. This allows them to trap bullets and disperse their energy, slowing them to a complete stop. These materials are lightweight and flexible, allowing them to be worn even under clothing. Higher levels, however, need rigid plates that use materials like Ceramics and Polyethylene, which are incredibly strong and even deflect or absorb bullets. These plates are much thicker and heavier, and yet still light enough to be worn in covert vests.
4.) Different Styles
In addition to being split along numerous protective lines, body armor can also be found in ‘covert’ and ‘overt’ styles. This means that a vest is designed either to be worn under clothes or over clothes. Covert armor offers discreet protection at all levels, and can even use rigid plates. Some covert vests are even designed to help keep the wearer cool. On the other hand, overt vests are worn over clothing and have more variety in the materials used and the extras available. For example, overt vests can use waterproof and high-visibility covers, and can be equipped with additional pockets and clips, as well as logos and insignia.
3.) Proper fitting
It may sound obvious, but ensuring your vest fits you properly is just as important as ensuring you have the right level of protection and style. In a hostile situation, freedom of movement is very important, and you need to be comfortable in order to perform to the best of your ability. Body armor should be comfortable enough to be worn for extended periods, meaning you don’t have to worry about your protection. Armor that does not fit properly may also have gaps in protection, leaving you vulnerable. Many vests are fully adjustable, but making sure you have the right size is very important.
2.) Keep it clean
Just as important is keeping your armor well maintained. Many do not realize that body armor and the materials used only have a limited lifespan, and without proper maintenance, this will be reduced dramatically. Vests need to be cleaned regularly and stored correctly, just like all clothing. The carrier, which is the vest itself, can usually be machine washed and often only consists of materials like cotton. The protective inserts, on the other hand, should only be cleaned with a mild cleaning agent and a gentle sponge, to avoid causing damage to the protection. Armor should be stored out of sunlight, should not be crumpled, and should have nothing stored on top of it. Moreover, all vests should be inspected regularly, and if any damage or deformity is found, you should replace your armor immediately. Many manufacturers recommend having multiple carriers to ensure you always have clean armor to wear.
1.) Wear it
The most important thing to know about a vest is that it can only protect you when it is worn. Again, this seems obvious, but all too often people are injured or even killed despite owning body armor. Choosing the right vest and keeping it well-maintained is important, but unless you wear it when it is needed, it cannot protect you.
Armor, bug out vehicle!
Highlander “Tech Preps”
This episode I will discuss bug out vehicles, do you need a fully armored bug out vehicle? Will those zombies be coming after you and you just run right over them? Well we will discuss this, is it just paranoia or does a vehicle of this caliber have merit in certain situations. The Police seem to think so, they use armored personnel carriers all the time to respond to hostile situations.
We will take a look at the price of such a vehicle and the legality of it. What are the pros and the cons of such a vehicle, and what would be good to equip it with? Along with the pros and cons is the costs of and kinds of accessories, armor, radios, computers, and other helpful gadgets that may help you if an event strikes with no recourse but to bug out.
I will help recommend a few products that could be installed as well as what I believe is the best route when choosing a vehicle chassis, and what to look out for. I will talk about the pros of a vehicle being armored such as bullet resistant (not bullet proof). Also the advantages over diesel vs gasoline engine. Also the advantages of heavy armor vs light, and the cons of both. I will talk about the cons of the vehicle such as speed, maneuverability, and weakness’s.
Communications, another important item to consider. What are the advantages of having various communications in a vehicle such as gps, wenches, and various other gadgets.
As always I will be taking questions from the chat and live call in line, so please feel free to visit chat or call in and talk to me live!, we will have a good time and I hope everyone enjoys the show!
Join us for Tech Prep “LIVE SHOW” every Monday 9:00/Et 8:00Ct 6:00/Pt Go To Listen and Chat
Listen to this broadcast or download “Armor, bug out vehicles” in player below!
This is a pretty slick little pack/back panel to integrate into the D3CR.
It is pretty small – 1 liter hydro capacity, 700 cubic inches when fully expanded – but is sized well to fit onto the back of a plate carrier. Tactical Tailor/Grey Ghost Gear and others have launched backpacks designed to integrate into the back of an armor carrier, but they mostly seem to end up a bit big, bulky and unwieldy.
A compressed FlatPack looks about as slick as you can hope to get for a hydration carrier, yet it gives you the ability to expand out and carrier more gear if needed.
This isn’t for carrying a multi-day load for sure, but enough space to support a day at the range, a long hike or a short range patrol activity.
I have a D3CR, and the chest rig harness is a bit on the lame side. That makes the FlatPack all the more appealing to me, given that it’s is intended to replace the harness and integrate in with the chest rig.
The price may be a bit rich for a small, fairly basic pack ($130), but it’s got a unique set of capabilities that don’t exist elsewhere.
Last week, MVT posted up a video talking through his current fighting gear / load bearing equipment, which includes a new chest rig made to his specs. It also includes a pretty cool first person run through a shooting scenario – worth paying attention here to pick up on some of the tactics/techniques that Max teaches.
The set up that Max shows here – a light battle belt and midweight chest rig is interesting in that it is a pretty significant shift from the heavy British Para-webbing style battle belt that he used to be a big advocate for–here’s the most recent example that I can find:
|Image via MVT.|
10-12ish mags, handgun, 4x canteen pouches on the back and a couple handgun pouches to round it out. We’ll call it a “British-style” battle belt for lack of a better name.
I toyed around with a British battle belt, similar to Max Velocity’s, through part of last year. Went cheap on the belt – got a Condor knock off and their harness, bought a few surplus USGI canteen pouches and used pouches that I had lying around to cobble one together.
Found a lot to like about it – way better load carrying ability and generally more comfortable / better mobility than a comparable weight of chest rig. Gives you the ability to carry a decent amount of food, a canteen, survival gear and a big IFAK, which can be a challenge using other load carrying gear. Good place to put your sidearm and good access to it. Easily adjusts to different weights of clothing, too.
After a bit of T&E, I ended up giving up on a British-style battle belt for my purposes, at least for the time being. Why?
The big deal breaker is operations in/around vehicles, and to a lesser extent moving through structures/room clearing. Canteen/utility pouches on the back and triple-thick mag pouches on the hips extends your width pretty significantly and you start having to turn sideways to get through doors, can’t sit in a normal car comfortably, etc.
|Image via BPRE|
There’s also no lighter/low threat profile to choose from with just the heavy belt. A lighter battle gives you the option of operating with just the lighter, more comfortable, lower profile belt on. Options and flexibility are good.
Of course, this isn’t exactly a revelation–Max’s heavier weight battle belts were a bit of an outlier in the tactical gear world. Folks have been running lighter battle belts in conjunction with a lighter chest rig or plate carrier mounted pouches for a while.
It looks like Max has arrived at a similar conclusion and ditched his big ol’ battle belt, at least for general use. In his recent write-up on the new chest rig featured in the video above, Max says:
I have most recently been settling on using a light battlebelt, which is comfortable enough to wear most of the time, augmented by a chest rig. I feel that this is the most practical application across operational environments; it works well for both dismounted operations, vehicle operations, and with or without armor.
This matches my own personal assessment after running a variety of gear – plate carriers with pouches directly attached, stand alone chest rigs of a variety of sizes, ‘British’ battle belt, etc.
I’m currently mid-process of re-building my kit to incorporate three different layers – light battle belt, chest rig and slick plate carrier. In conjunction with concealed carry/daily carry gear, these standalone pieces give you the flexibility of different profiles to address different situations. Slick plate carrier and CCW if anticipating potential trouble but need to maintain low profile. Light battle belt for running drills on the range or hunting. Throw it all together if the Nazi Zombies are at the front gates.
Chest rig and carrier are sorted out – HSP D3CR and a Velocity Lightweight Plate Carrier. I may down the line drop some coin on a custom rig from Extreme Gear Labs, designers of the D3CR, but generally the stock D3CR does what I need it to do. Looking forward to a couple of the enhancements HSP has in the works this year. The ability to directly attach the D3CR to the carrier, or run it as a standalone rig is money.
Battle belt is a work in progress – ideally want pistol, pistol mags x2, 2-3 rifle mags, dump pouch, IFAK, H2O of some variety, flashlight and multi-tool. Maybe comms, too. Not sure if I can manage all of that with the given real estate, but we’ll see.
Follow up posts/reviews are incoming.
In my experience, most people are continually tinkering with/adjusting their gear. Trying new things, incorporating new ideas or revisiting old ones. Travis Haley makes a big emphasis on preaching the importance of staying dynamic and adaptive…and at worst, adjusting and evaluating what you’re doing exposes you to different ideas and keeps you on your toes.
Interested to hear from the tribe – are you tinkering with your battle rattle? What gear ideas have you tried out recently and left by the wayside?