View Full Version : Police armor rifle threat?

July 27, 2011, 02:03 PM
The reason I'm asking this question, is because I might have an opportunity to purchase police armor (bullet proof vest) soon. Will a .223 pierce what police wear? What rounds will it stop? Thanks!

July 27, 2011, 02:06 PM
If it is just soft armor kevlar for example all it will stop is pistol rounds. Depending on the level it is there level 1, 2 and 3. i have a level 2a vest and it will stop up to 44 magnum rounds. in order to stop a 223 you would need a hard armor plate insert either steel or ceramic.

July 27, 2011, 02:18 PM
Ok, so what level will stop more? Can civilians buy vests and plates? Where would you get them? Thanks for the help!

July 27, 2011, 02:21 PM
I wouldn't count on it. That plate stuff the army uses isnt even 100% foolproof, and its a very small plate that doesnt cover your stomach or shoulders.

Edit- OP posted while i was

different states and municipalities may be different, but for the most part anyone except felons can own body armor. If you can own a gun, you can own body armor.

I've never shopped around for type 4 or ceramic plate vests. I have no idea for fair prices or good deals.

Also- its my impression that a ceramic plate will take one hit, get a crack, and be vastly reduced in effectiveness after that. So it will really only protect you for one shot, directly in the lungs, not from very close ranges, and even then only if youre lucky.

I realize im sounding very pessimistic. Please dont take it that way, I want a vest myself.

July 27, 2011, 02:39 PM
Rifle armor is extremely expensive!!! I picked up a plate carrier vest just because I was sick of fumbling with mags when doing a run-n-gun course with my buddies! I threw in some pro-tec pistol plates just cuz a little extra never hurt.....;)

But try checking it out, these are the only cats I know of that don't require dept. credentials. http://bulletproofme.com/

P.S. This is more of a gear related question, so don't be surprised if it is moved of closed shortly

July 27, 2011, 03:00 PM
Ok, so what level will stop more? Can civilians buy vests and plates? Where would you get them? Thanks for the help!

Lets take these questions one at a time.

What level will stop more? Generally, the higher the number, the greater the protection. Increased protection comes with increased weight. Linky here (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ballistic_vest) for a good chart.

Can civilians buy vests and plates? Sure. If you're not in the military, you're a civilian. Cops buy vests and plates, but generally the agency buys it for them.

Where would I get them? Galls.com (http://www.galls.com/style.html?assort=general_catalog&cat=&style=BP449) That's one place to look. There are other places, like US Cavalry Store (http://www.uscav.com/productinfo.aspx?productid=8724&tabid=548&catid=2759) but you can Google around and find body armor.

July 27, 2011, 03:46 PM
nothing is bullet proof. its bullet resistant. The stuff the army wears is not all its cracked up to be. it depends on your level of defense and maneuverability that you need. the EOD bomb suit will stop allot of things. Kevlar is good at defeating pistol rounds. Ceramic plates are designed to handle just a few rounds because of how it defeats the round. When the round hits the plate it cracks absorbing the energy with every crack. From the tests I have seen dragon skin is at the top of protection and great maneuverability. The reason the army doesn't use it officially is because the resin holding the ceramic disks together melt in extreme heat like the desert, and punishes anyone severely if they get caught with it.

July 27, 2011, 03:56 PM
.223 Threat level IIIA vest nope goes right through and don't slow down much. To stop a rifle round you need a piece of Titanium Armor, commonly know as a trauma plate, or you Cord buy Dragon Skin. Plane Kevlar stops pistole rounds and not all of them besides if you get hit it's gonna hurt bad.


July 27, 2011, 04:01 PM
To the OP: Just curious why you want a BulletProof Vest?

July 27, 2011, 04:21 PM
To the OP: Just curious why you want a BulletProof Vest?
Why wouldn't he? I have two chest rigs that carry Threat Level IIIA body armor. They are sold by US PALM and I prefer them to rigs that don't have body armor.

It's like asking someone, "why do you want a firearm?"

July 27, 2011, 04:37 PM
Some .223 is steel core - I have some Israeli steel core .223. But I believe Wolf is also steel core (mild steel). I don't know if this stuff will penetrate ceramic or steel plates, but it will penetrate all other vests, from what I understand.

July 27, 2011, 04:46 PM
Wolf isn't steel core, it's just bi-metal. Steel core implies an armor penetrator is present in the core whereas a bi-metal bullet has a lead core, mild steel jacket with a copper jacket over the steel one. Bi-metal bullets aren't really any more effective at penetration than standard copper jacketed bullets.

July 27, 2011, 09:45 PM
Get a plate carrier and put soft armor under it. I have a IIIa panels in my carrier under the plates. Some people put layers of kevlar over their plates too, to catch spall (the fragments of the metal bullet jacket) from hitting them when struck.

July 28, 2011, 03:29 AM
theres alot of factors on what will stop what, to be sure of stoppin a .223 you need a plate, lvl IV is quite expensive but itll take a round (1) of .30-06 standard AP. of course after that the entire plate is going to be basically powder. they even make a lvl 5 now apparently, from what i heard itll eat a .50 round and theres not really much info on it. lvl 4 plate will set you back anywhere from 3-600 depending on material

July 28, 2011, 10:08 AM
Yea, the level III plates will withstand multiple shots from a 7.62nato while the level IV is usually rated for only 1 shot of M2 armor piercing.

There is a ceramic level IV I saw rated to stop multiple hits but it's allot of $$$. Realistically, who's going to be shooting at you with armor piercing .30-06? I'd say get III plates and your fine unless you expect some farmer to be popping shots at you with a .300 magnum or somthing.

July 28, 2011, 07:32 PM
I could if I needed to, I bought a spam can of 30-06A.P. in M-1 Garand clips a while back just to shoot off.

July 28, 2011, 08:05 PM
In order to stop rifle rounds, stuff gets bulky and heavy fast.

If you can get a good price on a regular vest rated for handgun rounds, that's going to be probably as much as a person would reasonably wear. If you want to stop rifle rounds, I suppose you could get a plate carrier and plates (or just tape the plates to your back if need be :D).

July 29, 2011, 03:28 AM
Depending on what they are asking for it, I would say if you are getting a good deal then yes buy it.

The question is not if it will stop a 223 but if it will slow one down to give you a chance to survive depending on where it gets hit.

Look at it this way, will it give you more protection than if your not wearing one? And what are the chances of getting shot with a 223?


July 29, 2011, 06:43 AM
Ok I can't justify any civilian wearing body armor unless you just snitched on someone high up in the crime totem pole. If you do use your weapon in self defenseand kill a bg what are you going to tell the judge or jury when the prosecution says this guy was looking for a fight he was expecting it why else would he wear body armor? Or when you take the stand and they ask you why you were wearing body armor? What do you you say? Ummmm uhhhh ummmm GUILTY... unless your law enforcement or military body armor is just stupid you just look like either a mall ninja or someone who's out asking for a fight. And I bet any body armor you buy planning to stop rifle bullets will be plenty bulky for the bad guy to see in which case he just takes a head shot. U gonna go buy a military kevlar helmet and add armor to that too? Cmon now that's just stupid. Then the police will see you, arrest you and have you sent somewhere for a psychiatric review. Cause I know damn well I don't want regular ccw permit holders walking around my nieghborhood with big ass vests on its just ridiculous. Only time body armor is really going to benefit you is at a time of war and there are no wars right now and if the war ever made it to you there will be plenty of bodies to take the body armor from.

July 29, 2011, 09:45 AM
unless your law enforcement or military body armor is just stupid

Zack, I have to disagree with your assesment. You have been watching too much TV. Most body armor is worn underneath street clothes in the USA and it is the thickness of a heavy T-Shirt. Working in bad areas is the number one reason for wearing it, both by police and civilians. If you work a 7-11, gas station or liquor store would be an excellent reason as well as if you work in areas populated by drug dealers. I live in Chicago and there are over 365 killings from firearms each year here as well as 10,000 firearms confiscated from criminals each year by the CPD, sounds like a good reason to me.



July 29, 2011, 01:00 PM
Ok I live in st paul in probably one of the worst neighborhoods in minnesota and I frequent chicago at least 2 times a month over the weekends and its really not that serious yes people do get killed a lot but 95% of the time people who are being shot are the drug dealers gangbangers and police so I don't wanna hear that in bad areas u have to wear a vest garbage. And a gas station 50 feet from my house was robbed at gunpoint 3 days ago that still doesn't make me wanna buy a vest.. its pointless unless you have a reason to b worried about getting shot at a single firearm will suffice just fine. So ok ill refrase that if u are a cop military a drug dealer prostitute or gas station clerk in a bad area u should look into it otherwise its a pure waste of time and money... if u feel that endangered its time to move and or find a new proffesion or seek mental help

July 29, 2011, 03:20 PM
I am by no means an expert, but I believe Kevlar vests wear out, so if these are used that may be why they are selling them. It is my understanding that all vests are required to have an expiration date and are supposed to be replaced after that date. Now, I suppose they might still work fine and would probably be better than nothing, but just something to consider.

July 30, 2011, 09:21 AM
zachkuby87. let me give you an actual event from an incident here in jacksonville where a vest saved a life. Two phone men, guys I work with, were working a job at around 1 am. the two were working about two hundred yards apart. Tech B had left his trailer to go down to the trailer of tech A. When he returned to his trailer, he was aproached from behind by a man who put a gun in his back. The crook demanded his wallet, wich tech B imediately gave him. The bad guy inspected the wallet, and when he found only 7 dollars, demanded more. Tech B told him there was more in the truck, and led the criminal to the cab. When tech B handed the crook his bag, he made a grab for the gun. in the struggle, the gun discharged, crook broke off the fight and ran, tech B hit the floor, wind knocked out of him, but alive because of the level 2 vest he was wearing.

July 30, 2011, 09:50 AM
Body armor is purely a defensive tool. I find it hard comprehend why someone is saying that if you feel the need to where it then you need to move or seek mental help, especially since 99 percent of the members on this forum carry firearms which can be used for offense or defense purposes. If someone feels the need to carry a gun why is it so wrong for them to use body armor as well?

July 30, 2011, 02:06 PM
If you want body armor why not get some. I personally have a plate carrier for run and gunning and doing tactical/3 gun type drills and since my dad who is in law enforcement had an extra vest laying around I installed the plates in my plate carrier just for fun and just in case. If you got the money why not, its a free country and you never know when you may need it. :D

July 30, 2011, 09:35 PM
U post one incedent where some guys were working at 1am I may add where a vest saved there life and act like that means we should all wear them. but ok I'm going to do this one more time if you work in a hazardous area in the middle of the night or work a job where people would like to rob and/or shoot you then a vest is worth consideration but for most civilians its just rediculous! And if your paranoid enough to think you need avest yes u should seek mental help. and the op isn't speaking of thin consealable armor he's asking if used police vest is going to stop high powered rifle rounds. When was the last time you heard of a gangbanger shooting a high powered rifle? Prolly never they're not smart enough to use the right weapon for what there trying to accomplish they would rather look tough and run up to you with a 9mm or .22 maybe a .45 and shoot you in most cases there aim is so <poor> they'll miss any vital organs anyway.
Bottom line
Leo,military real deal body armor is required
cashiers of sorts,ganbanger,prostitutes and people that work late nights in bad nieghborhoods might wanna invest in some LIGHT body armor
Average joe aka me and you.. never its useless when's the last time you got shot at even? Never in most cases.
But I'm guessing your al just gonna argue this with me all day u have it your way invest your money in it when it will never be used its not my money do wht you please with it. And I just remembered the guy who says armor is defensive and guns are offensive that is complete bs unless you are the aggresor the gun is a defensive tool. U use it to keep the bg from harming you or whoever you don't use it to take the offensive and start shooting ppl in that case you become the agressor and therefore the bad guy...

August 2, 2011, 08:05 PM
Al Franken? ;)

When was the last time you heard of a gang banger shooting a high powered rifle?

Lots of them around here using assault rifles. Some of them courtesy of the BATFE! Home invasions are on the rise, also.

If it's legal, why not?

but for most civilians

I'm a CITIZEN. Civilians are designated as non-combatants in war-zones.

its not my money


August 3, 2011, 09:36 PM
So carrying a gun to protect yourself is OK, but wearing a vest is stupid? I don't think so. Armored car guards wear it too. If you feel you need to carry a firearm to protect yourself why not have a vest to stop the rounds coming your way while you are drawing your gun.

August 4, 2011, 07:22 AM
Civilians are designated as non-combatants in war-zones.

Actually, I believe that civilians are those persons who are not subject to the UCMJ. But, I get your point and I generally agree with it. All civil LEOs are civilians, unless they're called to active duty and are subject to the UCMJ.

It is my understanding that all vests are required to have an expiration date and are supposed to be replaced after that date.

Every one that I've ever seen had an expiration date, generally about five years. I'm told that Kevlar degrades over time and that after the expiration date, the manufacturer won't warranty them to stop the bullets they're designed to stop. I'm on my third vest now, and I'm supposed to be measured for my fourth sometime next month.

August 4, 2011, 07:58 AM
The reason I'm asking this question, is because I might have an opportunity to purchase police armor (bullet proof vest) soon. Will a .223 pierce what police wear? What rounds will it stop? Thanks!

If its used, its most likely being sold because its near the end of its service life.
For more information on different levels and types of armor, look at the sites for the various manufacturers. There is tons of information on various materials, and how effective they are. They will list the NIJ ratings for the matiral, and explain the NIJ rating system
The reason I refer you to the manufactures is that about half of the responses to this thread so far contain inaccurate or blatently false information.

August 5, 2011, 10:31 PM
If I am not mistaken, I am old and times change .....

Just in case no one else mentioned this, commiting a crime while wearing body armor is an additional charge all on it's own in some states. So if you have to defend yourself and come out on the loosing side in court you could also face a slam dunk charge of wearing body armor while in the commission of a crime.

You really need to decide if all the costs and hassles of getting and wearing body armor are worth the protection. After wearing what the Army had me wearing in Iraq, I'd never wear it. Even something like a second chance vest would be uncomfortable as hell as every day wear.

August 6, 2011, 10:37 AM
Since we're talking about body armor capabilities.....

This is a 40 S&W 165gr FMJ stopped in a Kevlar test pack rating in the neighborhood of a Level-III vest fired from about 5 feet away. I've caught as many as 12-15 bullets in one small pack like this before it's just too bloated and puffed up to hit anymore. But that's about what it takes to start getting it weakened enough in one spot to possibly get one through.


You'll notice after pushing the "dent" back out how little the bullet actually penetrated--if memory serves, the thing was caught by the third layer. To pass completely through it would have had to penetrate about twenty more layers after the first two.

It forms a nice little pocket around the nose of the bullet where the fibers stretched around it and that's about all the farther it can go. NOW, take notice of all the little "dimples" in the center of the pack... Those are entries of a slightly smaller caliber.

Here's the back side with all the exits...

Any guesses what bullet smaller than a 40S&W defeated Level-III armor so easily? A 17HMR at 100 yards. It doesn't even slow down going through something that will stop a 230gr. 44Mag SWC at PBR.

I guess the point here is that if you're trying to stop a handgun, it's pretty easy to do within a budget. If you're trying to stop a rifle, you'd be better off staying behind the sandbags. Rifles are an animal you don't want to get in front of. Even the tiny ones are not easy to stop. Once you step up the ladder, they get down-right near impossible to stop with a body armor you could wear and not be too weighed down to move.

August 7, 2011, 05:35 AM
Just for comparison have you every shot a .204 or .22-250 at a steel plate at under 50 yd?
The plate will barely twitch and the hole looks like a torch made it!
I would say BA against a rifle is useless, with handguns you shoot center mass until you realize they have armor, with a rifle you shoot em anywhere ya want doesn't matter!:D

Derek Scammon
August 9, 2011, 04:18 PM
zachkuby87 has been well-versed in the standard gun-grabber propaganda; i.e. anyone who wants to carry/wear a gun/body armor is either a criminal lowlife, a quivering pansy, or the wannabe reincarnation of John Wayne. Bravo, Handgun Control, Inc!

August 11, 2011, 02:11 PM
In my experience, when someone is as adamant as Zach is about an issue that really boils down to personal preference, it is because that individual wants desperately to be seen as more of an authority than they actually are, and it's best to ignore that person's advice on just about everything.

August 11, 2011, 02:20 PM
Your average body armor is for unexpected firearms confrontations, where you may or may not be dealing with someone who has a gun. With few exceptions, the .223 is not a pistol cartidge, and if someone is carrying a weapon that fires it, you will know about it in plenty of time to seek cover, run away, or (desperate situations) fire preemptively. If I know for a fact that I will be confronting someone with an assault rifle, I'm not strapping on kevlar, I'm staying home. However, if I have business that takes me into an area or situation that MAY turn to a self defense situation, I have no problem strapping on a soft vest.

August 11, 2011, 08:31 PM
"In my experience, when someone is as adamant as Zach is about an issue that really boils down to personal preference, it is because that individual wants desperately to be seen as more of an authority than they actually are, and it's best to ignore that person's advice on just about everything."

Not to mention the fact that the "authority" is nearly illiterate.

The events in London makes me think that there may be a need for some protection if/when that level of social disruption finds its way here.

August 11, 2011, 09:08 PM
Why do you need a gun to carry anywhere to defend yourself? If you feel you need to carry a gun for self defense then what is wrong with somebody wanting body armor?