16 Feb 14


Many of our non-LEO students ask me about body-armor.

Invented several decades ago by my friend, Dick Davis, “soft” body-armor has since become standard equipment for uniformed patrol officers, and has saved many lives. Its worth is no longer “theoretical!”

My non-LEO students want to know if they should buy it too. My standard answer is this:

Soft body-armor makes sense only when you plan to wear it routinely. Even the latest versions of soft body-armor, when thus worn constantly, are sill hot and uncomfortable. When you think you have a genuine need, and you’re willing to endure the discomfort of all-day wear, it is at least arguable.

Soft body-armor will protect you from most common pistol bullets. You’ll end-up with a nice bruise, but you’ll probably live through it. The alternative is a penetrating wound that is much more likely to be fatal or seriously injurious. Your choice is: “punched” or “pierced!”

Most soft body-armor is not designed to be donned quickly. Putting it on usually takes several minutes, as straps need to be adjusted, etc. It is, in most cases, intended to be worn over a T-shirt, but under the dress shirt, so it is not obvious, at least to the casual observer, that you have it on.

So, keeping soft body-armor next to your bed at night is probably not the best choice, as you likely won’t be able to get it on quickly enough during a crisis.

Some manufacturers make a “tactical jacket,” which is a bulky field-jacket or vest with integral kevlar panels. Worn externally, it is designed to be put on quickly, but is not suitable for all-day wear. At your bedside, this product makes more sense than does covert, soft body-armor, described above.

Now come my friends at CSE Gear with a lightweight carrier and plate system, specifically designed for bedside duty, but not suitable for all-day, covert wear. The carrier has a slick finish (no Molle), is Velcro-secured, and, at less than four pounds (front and back), is designed to be thrown on quickly. It uses DKX “hard” armor, thicker than soft body-armor and non-flexible (but very light), it provides protection from most pistol bullets. Since it is “hard,” you don’t get the bruise always associated with “soft” body-armor.

Mate the carrier with the DKX Max III plates, and your total burden is still less than 7 lbs, and it stops rifle rounds, including 308!

Price for this author’s subscribers is $400.00, a good deal less than for high-quality soft body-armor.

See my friends at CSE Gear http://www.criticalsafetyequipment.com/#!__dkx

See my friends at Armor Express for a “Tactical Jacket/Vest” http://www.officer.com/product/10915302/propper-intl-sales-icon-softshell-vest-three-season-tactical-functionality

Let’s all stay healthy!

“Who finds no satisfaction in himself, seeks it in vain elsewhere.”

La Rochefoucauld