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        What to consider when buying your body armor

        What to consider when buying your body armor

        Modern body armor serves a critical role in personal protection, but at the same time should not compromise personal mobility. After all, the greatest defense is to not get hit in the first place. This is why rigid, heavy designs such as the US Army’s IOTV are generally considered less preferable than lighter, less obstructive plate carriers. 

        There are many factors that influence the ergonomics and mobility of a particular piece of armor, including the style of its cut, its weight, and the material it is made of, and a discriminating buyer should be armed with the knowledge to make an informed purchase. 

        1. Cut Styles: Swimmer's Cut vs. SAPI Cut

        The choice between cut styles significantly impacts an individual's mobility. The swimmer's cut, characterized by tapered shoulders, prioritizes enhanced arm and shoulder mobility. This makes it particularly advantageous for professions like law enforcement or military personnel who need to maintain agility in dynamic situations. Conversely, the SAPI-style cut sacrifices some mobility for a larger protective area around the torso, an optimal choice in scenarios where comprehensive coverage takes precedence. 

         

        1. Body Armor Weight:

        Weight is a crucial factor influencing an individual's ability to move freely while wearing body armor. BulletSafe’s soft armor is NIJA Level IIIA certified and composed of ultra-high molecular weight polyethylene with a blend of aramid fibers, a lighter and denser material than Kevlar. This strong lightweight armor is designed to offer protection against handgun rounds at Level IIIA but can be combined with polymers to create a Level III or IV ballistic plate, capable of defeating rifle fire. Lighter Level IIIA armor is suitable for situations where agility and speed are paramount, such as for law enforcement officers who might have to chase after fleeing suspects. They are not ideal, however, in situations where one may expect threats to carry rifles. Maritime security and overseas private security contractors would be safer with the stronger but heavier Level IV plates. However, these harder ballistic plates can be heavier, potentially restricting mobility. Striking the right balance between protection and weight is imperative.  

        III. Body Armor Material: 

        Ultra-High Molecular Weight Polyethylene (UHMWPE) is renowned for its exceptional strength-to-weight ratio and is quickly replacing traditional materials like steel and ceramics. Its lightweight nature ensures superior mobility for the wearer without compromising ballistic resistance. Unlike steel, UHMWPE exhibits flexibility, absorbing and dispersing the impact energy rather than succumbing to fractures. In comparison to ceramics, UHMWPE offers a more cost-effective solution while maintaining comparable ballistic performance. Moreover, UHMWPE's versatility extends to its buoyancy in water, making it suitable for diverse applications, including maritime operations. The remarkable properties of UHMWPE position it as a leading choice for modern body armor, showcasing a harmonious blend of lightweight design, flexibility, and formidable ballistic protection. 

        When buying body armor, it's crucial to strike a balance between mobility and protection. Whether opting for the agility-enhancing swimmer's cut or the comprehensive coverage of the shooter's cut, factoring in the weight of the armor, and considering innovative materials like UHMWPE, each decision contributes to a personalized and effective protective ensemble. In the dynamic landscape of personal safety, the choices made in acquiring body armor reflect a commitment to both mobility and security, ensuring that the wearer is well-equipped for the challenges ahead. 

        Can a Bulletproof Ballistic Plate stop a .45-70 Round?

        Can a Bulletproof Ballistic Plate stop a .45-70 Round?

        Ballistic threats are unpredictable, and those who make a vested interest in their personal protection would do well to assume that BulletSafe Tactical Plate Carrier Kits with their Level IV ballistic plates stand out as a formidable safeguard against a variety of ballistic threats. While officially rated for National Institute of Justice (NIJ) Level IV, designed to resist the impact of powerful .30-06 armor piercing rounds, some might wonder about a ballistic plate’s ability to potentially stop .45-70 rounds and other round nose lever action bullets. However, it's crucial to emphasize that the NIJ does not officially test these specific types of ammunition. Instead, independent tests conducted elsewhere have suggested the vest's effectiveness against these formidable projectiles. 

         

        Understanding the .45-70 Round and the Level IV plate 

        The .45-70 cartridge is a potent and historically significant ammunition known for its association with classic lever-action rifles. The specific round under consideration is a 325-grain projectile traveling at a muzzle velocity of 2,050 feet per second (fps). Comparatively, Level IV vests are explicitly designed to thwart larger and faster .30-06 AP 166gr rounds, which typically travel at 2,880 fps. 

         

        Velocity and Trajectory Differences 

        One of the key factors that differentiates the .45-70 round from the .30-06 is the velocity at which these bullets travel. The spitzer or "sharp point" design of the .30-06 imparts a flatter trajectory, enhancing its aerodynamics for greater accuracy over longer distances. In contrast, the .45-70's round nose design sacrifices some of this trajectory flatness but compensates with greater impact energy. 

         

        Impact Energy vs. Penetration 

        The distinction between a round nose bullet like the .45-70 and a spitzer bullet becomes pivotal when considering impact energy and penetration capabilities. The .45-70 delivers higher impact energy due to its design, making it formidable in terms of stopping power. However, it also tends to exhibit lesser penetration compared to spitzer bullets. 

         

        Vest Performance 

        While the NIJ Level IV certification doesn't explicitly cover the .45-70 or other lever-action bullets, independent tests have suggested that the BulletSafe ballistic plate may provide a reasonable level of protection against these formidable projectiles. The armor's design, coupled with its ability to handle the impact of .30-06 AP rounds, hints at its potential to withstand the unique challenges posed by lever-action ammunition. 

         

        It is crucial to approach such claims with a degree of caution. The absence of official NIJ testing for these specific types of ammunition means that the vest's performance against .45-70 rounds and other lever action bullets remains a topic of speculation and independent testing. Users should be aware that relying on a vest for untested scenarios may compromise their safety.  

        While the BulletSafe Tactical Plate Carrier Kit’s design and performance against large caliber AP rounds suggests a robust protective capability, users should exercise caution and seek out the latest independent test results before relying on the vest for specific ammunition types. As the realm of ballistic protection continues to evolve, it is essential for users to stay informed and make decisions based on the most accurate and up-to-date information available. 

        Which Types of Professions Need Bulletproof Vests?

        Which Types of Professions Need Bulletproof Vests?

        With the number of random shootings and gun related crimes the United States has been experiencing in recent years, bulletproof vests have seen sharp increases in sales. When disaster strikes, people react accordingly, and more professionals other than military personnel and law enforcement officers are considering the benefits of a robust bulletproof vest.

         

        Security

        It should go without saying that those whose duty it is to guard a location from criminal elements will need protection. A security officer guarding a high value target or individual puts his life on the line every time he shows up to work. Many security companies require their officers to purchase their own vests and equipment, and we at BulletSafe believe that these professionals should be able to have access to effective, durable body armor without breaking the bank, which is one of the reasons why BulletSafe VP3 vests are priced at just $299.99.

         

        EMTs

        Paramedics and medical professionals can sometimes find themselves caring for violent or belligerent patients under the influence of mind-altering drugs. These people, without full control over their own actions, will many times attempt to attack the very people who are trying to help them. EMTs are at 22 times greater risk of being attacked on the job than other workers in the United States, according to a report by the CDC. Glass bottles, knives, and improvised weapons are the most common implements used against paramedics. While BulletSafe’s VP3 is not rated specifically for sharp objects such as these, they have been known to provide exceptional melee protection.

         

        Teachers

        Schools seem to be at the forefront of the school shooting epidemic. Several school districts, primarily those in the American South, have come up with the common sense solution of simply arming and training teachers to serve as a deterrent to potential school shooters, but in districts where this practice is specifically and vigorously forbidden, it is up to the teachers to find another way to protect their students. A bulletproof vest doesn’t have to be solely for the teacher’s personal protection. By removing the vest and bracing it against a door or window with the proper barricade technique (see below), a teacher can create a good bulletproof barrier capable of stopping the most common pistol rounds ranging from 9mm to .44 magnum.

        A proper barricade uses structural integrity and not the weight of objects to prevent intruders from opening the door.

         

        CPS

        CPS (Child Protective Services) agents may require bulletproof vests for work due to the inherent risks associated with their role. Working in communities with high crime rates or volatile situations, agents may encounter hostility and danger while investigating cases of child abuse or domestic violence. The unpredictable nature of their work, coupled with the emotional intensity of situations such as child removals or involvement in drug-related or gang-related cases, increases the potential for confrontations and violence. While not all CPS agents wear bulletproof vests as a standard practice, it would be beneficial to use bulletproof vests to ensure the safety of agents as they fulfill their crucial mission of safeguarding the welfare of children.

         

        Range officers

        Individuals who work in public venues are well aware that there are always a few guests who exhibit a lack of common sense. Shooting ranges mix the element of danger with the unpredictable behavior of the public. Not everyone who wants to shoot possesses the necessary skills to handle firearms safely, placing range officers at risk of negligent discharges or encounters with shooters who struggle to adhere to basic safety regulations. For range officers, the use of body armor can offer peace of mind, allowing them to prioritize their safety while also ensuring the overall safety of everyone present on the range.

         

        Bank workers

        Professionals in the banking sector may require bulletproof vests due to the inherent risk of armed robberies or intrusions targeting the valuable assets housed within financial institutions. The visibility of such protective gear serves as a deterrent and provides a layer of defense in unpredictable situations, safeguarding bank workers who may be at risk of injury during criminal incidents. The use of bulletproof vests is part of a broader strategy for emergency preparedness, ensuring that employees have a measure of protection against potential violence.

         

        Professionals in various dangerous occupations, including those in the banking sector, can benefit from the use of armor as a precautionary measure. Whether in law enforcement, security, or other high-risk fields, the provision of protective gear helps mitigate the potential harm individuals may face while carrying out their duties. By prioritizing safety through the use of armor, employers can contribute to the overall well-being of their workforce in environments where the threat of violence is a persistent concern.

        Taking Charge of Your Safety

        Taking Charge of Your Safety

        A recent November 2023 NBC News poll brought some interesting findings to light – it turns out 52% of Americans are now gun owners or at the very least rely on someone else in the household to pack heat in the event of an emergency. That's a jump from 46% in 2019 and 42% in 2013, setting a record for gun-toting households in NBC poll history.

        It seems like more folks are finally starting to see firearms as the self-defense tools they’re meant to be. Ironically (but unsurprisingly), most of those who advocate for stricter gun control don’t happen to own any guns at all. A CNN poll revealed that 76% of non-gun households support taking away firearms from the average American. On the flip side, only 45% of gun-owning households are in favor of any sort of gun control.

        When it comes to the government's role, opinions are likewise divided. About 58% believe the government can put a stop to mass shootings, while the other 42% are a bit skeptical. Some argue that no matter what laws are in place, bad stuff is bound to happen. Murder's been a crime since biblical times, and even the threat of the death penalty hasn't been able to scare off determined murderers and terrorists.

        So, who's responsible for your safety? Well, it looks like it's on you, not the government. You're your own first responder. In a worst-case scenario, the police might take a few minutes to swoop in, and by then, it could be too late.

        So, what's your game plan? Take a good look at where you live, check out how prevalent crime is in your local area, and don't forget to look up your state's gun laws to see if you can even carry a gun to defend yourself in the first place. If safety's your top priority and your state allows it, consider applying for a concealed carry license. The best guarantor of your own safety is a trusty handgun you’re trained and familiar with. If you’re on the fence about carrying around a weapon or if your state’s laws don’t permit you to carry one, but you’re still concerned about gun violence in your area, consider a BulletSafe VP3 vest or a tactical plate carrier for that extra layer of protection.

        The VP3 is the pinnacle of lightweight, concealable body armor. It's made from ultra-high molecular weight polyethylene with a blend of aramid fibers to make a lightweight yet dense material, weighing in at just 5.16lbs for an extra-large vest. You can slip it under your clothes or a hefty jacket without feeling like you're hauling around a suit of armor. Plus, it's NIJ certified and packs a punch, stopping everything from a 9mm to a .44 magnum.

        BulletSafe's tactical plate carrier kit is equipped with Level IV plates, capable of defeating rifle fire from most firearms up to 30-06 AP. The no-nonsense plate carrier is lightweight and free of unnecessary obstructions, with integrated MOLLE webbing for users to add their own accessories. This plate carrier is perfect for security officers or law enforcement agencies who need the heavier kit to deal with more substantial security threats.

        In a world where opinions on gun ownership and government intervention vary widely, it's clear that personal safety is a matter of individual responsibility. The rising number of gun owners reflects a growing belief in self-protection, as highlighted by shifting perspectives on gun control. Whether you choose to exercise your Second Amendment rights or advocate for stronger regulations, the reality is that being your own first responder is paramount. As discussions around safety continue, considering practical measures, like obtaining a concealed carry license or investing in protective gear like the BulletSafe VP3 vest, underscores the importance of proactive personal security. In the end, the path to safety may differ, but taking charge of your own well-being in a world where uncertainties persist is something we should all be thinking about.

        How Bulletproof is Thanksgiving Dinner

        How Bulletproof is Thanksgiving Dinner

        Have you ever found yourself pondering the unthinkable scenario of a Thanksgiving feast turning into a chaotic showdown, with grandma, fed up with her daughter-in-law's cooking, brandishing a 12-gauge semi-auto shotgun from beneath the dining table? No? Excellent, that means you're sane.

        Yet, with Turkey Day swiftly approaching, we at BulletSafe saw an opportunity to shed light on a rather unique form of protection. Picture this hypothetical situation: a dining table, accommodating six to eight guests, stretches to 78 inches or 2 yards in length. If shotgun-toting grandma were to open fire from one end of the table, every shot would be considered point-blank. Shotguns, originally crafted for close-quarters combat within the confines of World War I trenches, can wreak havoc at such close range.

        While some hunters may argue that they've taken shots at a turkey only for it to flee, likening it to shooting a bulletproof vest encased in stuffing, there are a few key factors to keep in mind. First, a live turkey is protected by a robust layer of feathers designed to shield it from the elements. Second, when a turkey is hit in the body by a shotgun with turkey loads from distances exceeding 40 yards, it might be wounded but is unlikely to meet its demise due to the aforementioned protective feather layer.

        At point-blank range, however, the tables turn, and the turkey's fate is sealed.

        That is unless you take two crucial steps: a vigilant weapons check at the entrance to prevent any potential dinner table disruptions and the fortification of your beloved turkey with a BulletSafe IIIA bulletproof vest. Even at point-blank range, the BulletSafe IIIA vest can thwart large-caliber slug rounds and heavy buckshot like 00. While it may result in some unsightly deformation on your centerpiece, you can rest assured that none of the shotgun pellets will breach its defenses.

        Soft armor vests, such as the BulletSafe VP3, boast a NIJ Level IIIA rating, primarily designed to halt pistol caliber rounds ranging from 9mm to .44 magnum. However, in practice, they also provide protection against shotgun rounds, either from buckshot or slugs.

        In one of our videos, BulletSafe’s very own Jake demonstrated the dependability of our VP3 vests by actually up-armoring a turkey and blasting it with a round of buckshot followed up with a slug to the back. Just as predicted, there was no penetration.

        While we sincerely hope that no one has to grapple with shotgun-wielding, holiday-induced chaos this Thanksgiving, we, at BulletSafe, encourage you to prioritize your safety in this unpredictable world. Consider acquiring one of our bulletproof vests for added peace of mind.

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