Most of those who have taken steps to prepare for a post-collapse America have acquired the basic essential goods and trading supplies that will be needed in the event of worst-case economic, financial or societal collapse. We’ve created bug-out, bug-in, and self defense plans that we hope will be sufficient enough to give us the edge against potential thieves, looters and criminals who will undoubtedly be coming for our supplies when resources in the general population begin to run dry. Stocked with the latest in SHTF weaponary and ammunition, the overwhelming majority of us believe that we’ll be able to neutralize any threat that may present itself.
In general, the three million preppers in America will no doubt hold several key advantages over non-preppers, namely that we’ve stocked larder to provide the energy we need to function at optimal production levels, land that is isolated or well secured against the inevitable hordes of people looking basic survival goods like food, and firearms to defend what’s ours.
However, despite how prepared we think we are, if there’s one principle by which preppers should operate it’s that best laid plans generally don’t pan out the way we anticipated. Murphy’s law will be in full effect in a post-collapse scenario. As such, we must operate from the standpoint that “anything that can go wrong will go wrong.”
Many of us may (wrongly) assume that our guns and thousands of rounds of ammunition will be all that is needed to defend our homes against those who would do us harm, and that our well honed shooting skills will allow us to quickly incapacitate would-be attackers.
Speak to any soldier who’s been in a firefight and you’ll quickly learn that this is not usually the case.
While you may be able to accurately hit static targets at the range, if you’re engaged in a real life or death scenario your target will be moving, they’ll likely be coordinating with other elements of their raiding party, and most important of all, they’ll be shooting back.
That’s right, you won’t be the only one with the firearms and best laid plans.
As such, we must look to force multipliers which, through enhanced technology, strategies and equipment, increase our probability of victory.
For those preparing for the end of the world as we know it and a battle for resources, one such force multiplier which can provide a significant advantage on a number of different levels is body armor.
The fact of the matter is that if your home or property are under attack and you’re firing down range, in all likelihood the attackers are not coming at you with machetes and rocks. You can bet they’ll be shooting back at you – and they’ll be shooting to kill.
In the video below, James Yeager of Tactical Response, gives some insight into the different types and protection levels of body armor that you should consider adding to your preparedness supplies.
How effective is body armor? In February of 1997 two bank robbers armed with fully-automatic AK-47′s and wearing heavy body armor were confronted by some 400 LAPD police officers. They were repeatedly hit by small arms fire, yet continued the shootout with police for some 40 minutes before they were finally eliminated by police SWAT snipers and LAPD officers who had acquired high powered rifles from local gun shops. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G9SJi...&feature=email
As you consider your home and property defense plans, think about the type of weaponry your attackers may be utilizing as they attempt to overtake you. How would you do it? Then, consider that classification levels of body armor you will need to protect against those weapons.
NIJ (National Institute for Justice) Standard-0101.04 establishes six formal armor classification types, as well as a seventh special type.
Type I (.22 LR; .380 ACP)
This armor protects against .22 long rifle lead round nose (LR LRN) bullets, with nominal masses of 2.6 g (40 gr), impacting at a minimum velocity of 320 m/s (1050 ft/s) or less, and against .380 ACP full metal jacketed round nose (FMJ RN), with nominal masses of 6.2 g (95 gr), impacting at a minimum velocity of 312 m/s (1025 ft/s) or less. Type I body armor is light. This is the minimum level of protection every officer should have, and the armor should be routinely worn at all times while on duty. Type I body armor was the armor issued during the NIJ demonstration project in the mid-1970s. Most agencies today, however, because of increasing threats, opt for a higher level of protection.
Type II-A (9mm; .40 S&W)
This armor protects against 9mm full metal jacketed round nose (FMJ RN) bullets, with nominal masses of 8.0 g (124 gr), impacting at a minimum velocity of 332 m/s (1090 ft/s) or less, and .40 S&W caliber full metal jacketed (FMJ) bullets, with nominal masses of 11.7 g (180 gr), impacting at a minimum velocity of 312 m/s (1025 ft/s) or less. It also provides protection against Type I threats. Type II-A body armor is well suited for full-time use by police departments, particularly those seeking protection for their officers from lower velocity 9mm and 40 S&W ammunition.
Type II (9mm; .357 Magnum)
This armor protects against 9mm full metal jacketed round nose (FMJ RN) bullets, with nominal masses of 8.0 g (124 gr), impacting at a minimum velocity of 358 m/s (1175 ft/s) or less, and .357 Magnum jacketed soft point (JSP) bullets, with nominal masses of 10.2 g (158 gr), impacting at a minimum velocity of 427 m/s (1400 ft/s) or less. It also provides protection against Type I and Type IIA threats. Type II body armor is heavier and more bulky than either Types I or II-A. It is worn full time by officers seeking protection against higher velocity .357 Magnum and 9mm ammunition.
Type III-A (High Velocity 9mm; .44 Magnum)
This armor protects against 9mm full metal jacketed round nose (FJM RN) bullets, with nominal masses of 8.0 g (124 gr), impacting at a minimum velocity of 427 m/s (1400 ft/s) or less, and .44 Magnum jacketed hollow point (JHP) bullets, with nominal masses of 15.6 g (240 gr), impacting at a minimum velocity of 427 m/s (1400 ft/s) or less. It also provides protection against most handgun threats, as well as the Type I, II-A, and II threats. Type III-A body armor provides the highest level of protection currently available from concealable body armor and is generally suitable for routine wear in many situations. However, users located in hot, humid climates may need to evaluate the use of Type III-A armor carefully.
Type III (Rifles)
This armor protects against 7.62mm full metal jacketed (FMJ) bullets (U.S. military designation M80), with nominal masses of 9.6 g (148 gr), impacting at a minimum velocity of 838 m/s (2750 ft/s) or less. It also provides protection against Type I through III-A threats. Type III body armor is clearly intended only for tactical situations when the threat warrants such protection, such as barricade confrontations involving sporting rifles.
Type IV (Armor Piercing Rifle)
This armor protects against .30 caliber armor piercing (AP) bullets (U.S. military designation M2 AP), with nominal masses of 10.8 g (166 gr), impacting at a minimum velocity of 869 m/s (2850 ft/s) or less. It also provides at least single-hit protection against the Type I through III threats. Type IV body armor provides the highest level of protection currently available. Because this armor is intended to resist “armor piercing” bullets, it often uses ceramic materials. Such materials are brittle in nature and may provide only single-shot protection, since the ceramic tends to break up when struck. As with Type III armor, Type IV armor is clearly intended only for tactical situations when the threat warrants such protection.
Off the Grid News offers some additional items to consider before purchasing body armor:
At a minimum, the vest you purchase should have the ability to accept hard plates, and that usually means purchasing exposed armor. Exposed armor like military IBA and IOTV vests (and clones) as well as plate-carrier-type systems have some serious advantages for the wearer. For starters, they are usually designed to by much tougher externally and use fabrics on the outside like 1000 denier nylon – ultra strong. They also accept hard plates for the front and back, and some models accept side plates. These vests and plate carriers are also usually equipped with MOLLE loops so you can add ammunition and sustainment pouches to the vest, giving you a full load out at your fingertips. Accessories are also widely available— things that take protection to the next level such as collar yokes and groin protectors and clever features like pull releases to drop the armor in the event of an emergency.
If you’ve got the preparedness basics covered, body armor should be your next serious consideration. When your enemy is shooting back there is a good possibility someone you love can be seriously injured or killed. While body armor is not going to provide 100% protection, it is a force multiplier that can certainly give you, your family and friends a much better chance of repelling an attack. As we saw with the 1997 bank robbery, body armor can give you the ability to take a lickin’ and keep on kickin’, while the enemy at the gates may not have such a benefit. Additionally, in a collapse scenario there will be no doctors or emergency rooms, so even bullet wounds that are survivable with modern hospital care can quickly become deadly.
I was curious so I googled it. Apparently you can't legally in Texas.
Best place to find answers for questions such as this is to search the penal code:
Sec. 46.041. UNLAWFUL POSSESSION OF METAL OR BODY ARMOR BY FELON. (a) In this section, "metal or body armor" means any body covering manifestly designed, made, or adapted for the purpose of protecting a person against gunfire.
(b) A person who has been convicted of a felony commits an offense if after the conviction the person possesses metal or body armor.
(c) An offense under this section is a felony of the third degree.
Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 452, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 2001.
In general, yes - for law-abiding folks. A felony conviction makes possession of Body Armor illegal under federal law and in many states.
We have had civilian clients with many different civilian needs for Body Armor so we understand the need for vests for civilians. Our policy is to only sell to law-abiding adults who have a lawful purpose for Body Armor. (A parent or guardian may buy for a minor with a legitimate need.)
Residents of Connecticut are prohibited from buying Body Armor unless the sale is face to face (or unless the buyer is a police officer, Police Department, or military). We can't ship to Connecticut, or even accept credit cards billed there...
We cannot ship to residents of Connecticut
who are not police or military.
Some states are considering new legislation to prohibit or restrict sales of Body Armor to civilians, e.g., New York. If you are in a state that passes such a law, you would be well advised to make your Body Armor purchase now before it becomes much more expensive and inconvenient, if not prohibited altogether.
I checked the laws for several states and basically if you can legally purchase a firearm then you can legally purchase body armor. I happen to already have some myself but would like to purchase some better vests then my current ones.
In the house of the wise are stores of choice food and oil, but a foolish man devours all he has.
--Proverbs 21:20 :ld:
In almost all states, no prior felonies and you are good to go. Use of the armor during commission of a crime is an enhancement. I think you are good in Texas. The penal code quoted above is the "possession after felony conviction = felony." Just like possession of a firearm after a felony conviction. Bulletproofme is located in Austin.
"All I really need to know, I learned from Zane Grey and Louis L'amour."
Attain, and maintain, the ability to make head shots. The failure to stop drill, two to center mass/one to the head, has, until recently, been a valid way to defeat assailants. However, because of the propensity of criminals to utilize body armor in home invasions, this methodology is now, at best, questionable. Hence, the reliance upon head shots. True, ballistic resistant face shields and helmets can be very effective, but against the proper weapon/ammunition, coupled with precision in aim, they can be marginalized or defeated.
Knowing the potential weaponry utilized by known gangs or groups, can make it easier to determine defensive needs. I'm lucky, so far, living in a rural neighborhood. However, where I am, only my next door neighbor has any weapons- he's a retired Federal LEO. Most other folks near me are peaceable, Church goin' folks, who are NOT hunters or shooters. Perhaps it's the surfeit of children hereabouts...
My go-to weapons for "Damn, you 'walked' into the wrong recreation room" are centered around inflicting blunt force trauma, as in 12ga 3" slugs, to 7.62X51 180gr copper clad steel bullets. Either do well against armed felons... Aim small, miss small... "Placement is everything."
Just make sure you have the right gear for clean-up... It WILL be messy...
I would definitely suggest body armor as a prep item. Most folks think they would be better off with another thousand or so rounds of ammo, but if you already have a thousand or so rounds, another two cases likely will only prolong the inevitable if you need to break into that stash.
Better to buy a set of body armor. I mean seriously, do you really want to go out due to some fools .32apc shot to the gut? My suggestion is that is price is an issue, look on the used market. If you know of departments who issued ballistic panels to be worn on the outside, those will be your best bet. The panels break down due to sweat and constant bending. The outer vest carriers mean no sweat on the panels, while concealable armor will get sweaty in most cases. I will also say that I have discussed testing with 10+ year old used armor, likely used daily for three to five years, that still withstood taking a bullet. So don't discount used armor if money is an issue.
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