View Full Version : A vest?

April 14, 2006, 09:24 AM
Since they're available at a price, I've often wondered about the practicallity of a kevlar vest in HD situations. How long does one take to put on? Is it something that could reasonably be done in pinch if one had to?

April 14, 2006, 09:40 AM
Vests are great if you know you're going in somewhere that you may get shot. It's a before-hand preperation. You can put one on fairly quickly, but I still wouldn't get one for HD. I would worry more about alerting my family and getting them cover, and acquiring my offensive weapon.

April 14, 2006, 12:41 PM
I wouldn't mess with one. If I kept one around, it would be for my significant other or children to put on while I secure the area.

Mas Ayoob
April 14, 2006, 03:02 PM
I think the vest is a good idea. If you keep it under the bed, with the three straps on your gun hand side secured and with them open on the other, you can slide into it very quickly even with your dominant hand covering the bedroom door with your pistol.

Why do you keep the gun? In case intruders wield weapons in your home. Why the vest? Same reason.

April 14, 2006, 03:32 PM
I think the vest is a good idea. If you keep it under the bed, with the three straps on your gun hand side secured and with them open on the other, you can slide into it very quickly even with your dominant hand covering the bedroom door with your pistol.

Why do you keep the gun? In case intruders wield weapons in your home. Why the vest? Same reason.

Ditto. I do it this way for the same reason.

April 14, 2006, 09:37 PM
Takes little time and can safe your life. It's not the odds of being shot that matter, it's the consequences. Since a $500 vest will stop most handgun rounds to most vital organs, it's silly to not have one especially if you're armed with a gun.

model 25
April 15, 2006, 12:17 AM
So you decide to get a vest. What threat level are you going to buy? Are you going to train while wearing it? Sweat degrades kevlar over about ten years so can you train without sweating:D :D

I had to wear a kevlar vest with steel plates in Iraq. It was heavey and I lost 60 pounds in 3 months from the heat. The vest and helmet weighed 50 lbs.
Just a few thoughts:D :D


April 15, 2006, 12:44 AM
The vest and helmet weighed 50 lbs. Wow! My dad is a Vietnam Vet and he told me the ones they had back then were so heavy and hot a lot of guys would ditch them or just not wear them (think he was talking about flak jackets) :eek: Seems kinda dumb to not wear armor when you absolutely know you're going to be in a gunfight, but then I wasn't there and can't judge. Anyway he wore his though and mentioned that it may have saved him injury from fragmentation at least once. Don't know I'd want anything quite like that...Curious, would the one you had stop an AK round? Wonder if his would have back then...

model 25
April 15, 2006, 12:55 AM
The steel plates would stop an AK round but the kevlar was just for fragmentation.


April 15, 2006, 01:09 AM
I keep an extra vest in the house for HD. I don't think it's silly at all. The chances of someone invading your home with intent to harm you is very low. Generally, those kinds of cases are D.D.G.B. (Drug Deal Gone Bad) in my experience. However, it does happen on occasion. A friend of mine worked a case a few years ago where a drug-crazed monster broke into the wrong house to attack his dealer. Instead, he found a middle-aged couple whom he mistook for his intended target. He attacked them. Thankfully, they were able to call for help and after a struggle, he was subdued.

April 18, 2006, 02:57 AM
In addition to my modern kevlar vest, which I keep handy, I have a relic of sorts. It's a Vietnam era surplus vest. It clearly says on the vest that it will not stop bullets. It has some steel plates and is designed for fragmentation, debree from bombs or grenades, and possibly indirect fire. I doubt I would have bothered wearing it if I were in Vietnam. I would rather be more mobile and less exhausted from the added weight (think heat fatigue) because loss of mobility or energy to fight could get you shot. It's the same argument that the Marines are presenting now. They have 10 pounds of additional armor as an "option" but many Marines opt to decline the armor in favor of mobility and less heat stroke, etc.

April 18, 2006, 05:28 AM
If you don't have time to put it on (only takes about 10-15 seconds), you can hang it over your weak forearm and use it as a shield (mobile cover for your vitals). If both hands are needed just drop the vest. If a bad guy jumps out and starts shooting, raise the vest and shoot from its side. I have two vests both given to me by my boss for alarm calls to the pawnshop that I work. One is past its labeled life span but I keep it because it will still stop bullets. I once shot a vest some 5 years past its labeled date and it stopped the rounds that IIA is supposed to stop (30 carbine from a handgun was to much) but 45acp and 9mm stopped just fine.

April 18, 2006, 11:24 AM
Although he was mainly speaking from a police training context, one writer suggested wearing a vest when shooting at the range. Something to consider, anyway.

April 18, 2006, 12:59 PM
From some of the "I got hit at the range" stories I've read on here, wearing a vest to the range seems like a good bit of advice.

April 18, 2006, 06:51 PM
I wear my vest to the range. I've seen some irresponsbile gun handling and have read stories about people in neighboring lanes turning and pointing cocked and loaded guns at others. Very scary. Wearing the vest while shooting is also good practice for performance in the proper equipment.

For $500 a vest is a good investment.

April 18, 2006, 08:37 PM
I wear a vest 8+ hrs a day. I think ill pass on wearing it at home as well.

I do carry an old Kevlar vest in my truck, just in case I need it. At home, however, my vest is in the closet with my uniforms. Dont even want to look at it when Im off duty.

PPCLI 2 can.
April 18, 2006, 10:21 PM
the vest is a great idea but not a steel plated one
wore one in serbia and man that sucker sucked, most guys ditched em and put cardboard in so as not to catch heck from the c.o.
anyways now that you mention it im thinkin of gettin a kevlar one just incase

Gun Wielding Maniac
April 20, 2006, 09:16 PM
For home defense I think a vest is a great idea. Actually, if I were you I'd get one of the type with the SAPI plates. If you are going to bother to get a vest, you might as well get one with the best protection you can buy. SAPI plates up to Class 4 can stop even .30/06 AP rifle bullets... providing the bullets hit the strike face. Like many others here, I had to wear the Interceptor body armor system while deployed overseas. In the desert heat, or anywhere else, it really sucks. But so does a sucking chest wound. In your own airconditioned home, it would not be a big deal though. If some thug comes at you with a shotgun you'll be glad you have it. I'd have a vest that can be equipped with pouches for magazines, flashlights, and perhaps some zip ties. Dont go crazy. I'd also keep the vest in the same place as my rifle or shotgun. Once again, if you want to be serious about home defense... GET A LONG GUN. It owns any pistol ever made.

April 20, 2006, 09:26 PM
I have one just under my side of the bed.
Maybe I'll have time to put it on, maybe not.
maybe I'll even remember that it is there. maybe not.

If I didn't have one the chances of me wearing it, whether I remember and have time or not, diminished greatly

The old need and not have versus have and not need argument

April 20, 2006, 11:40 PM
I keep one next to my bed, an old army flak jacket in my rig, and one at work that I wear when I have to go to the bad parts of Portland. It takes about 10 seconds to put on and I'd rather take a bullet in it than take one without it. Although I don't really want to be shot at at all.