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i was wondering, how do you make cheap protective body armor ? Answered

it dosnt have to stop a bullet or something just gives you protection from knives and punches

11 Replies

Re-design (author)2010-06-29
gearhead1951 (author)2010-06-28

caint say as to "cheap" , but threre are a lot of folks sellin' kevlar reinforced clothin' here in Britain that is supposed to give you SOME protection against knives ! Worn over sufficient paddin' (heavy jacket ect...) it would most likely do th' job , and help against blunt force (punches) as well ! There are a few motorcycle clothin' mfg's that produce riding gear lined with kevlar cloth and srategicaly placed plates of th' same that meets yer criteria !

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onrust (author)2010-06-27

Phone books. Cut (or tear) them to the tested thickness you need.

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jtobako (author)2010-06-27

How much protection?

Over which parts of your body?

Stopping a body blow is much easier than, say, not getting shived in the kidney or blocking an upper cut to the chin. There are websites on websites about armor-mostly re-enactors of historical periods, but some on combat.
will give you a start.

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jtobako (author)jtobako2010-06-27

Oh, forgot carpet armor. That's where you use old carpet instead of leather.

All sorts of patterns at

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lemonie (author)2010-06-27

It's a case of "what is cheap and will stop knives and punches?"
So sheet-metal, like aluminium or steel (domestic-appliance casing / PC case thickness), or heavy-grade plastic like trash-cans are made of.
It'll be uncomfortable and look silly.
If you're thinking of a padded-vest, you need thickness to replace stiffness, such as half an inch of leather.


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AndyGadget (author)lemonie2010-06-27

Alternatively, go to a different pub #;¬)

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masterochicken (author)2010-06-27

If you don't want to do a lot of work then your best option would be to look for used motorcycle leathers. Look for ones made from kangaroo leather because it is thicker than cow leather. It should provide some protection. If you want to put a little work into it Then you could try riveting strips of sheet metal to the inside of a jacket.

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frollard (author)2010-06-27

Once again, lemonie hits the nail on the head.

Force = mass times acceleration. Pressure = force / area. You can reduce the damage by reducing force and/or pressure.
How to do that? You can't reduce the mass, but you can slow down the acceleration by adding padding.
Reducing pressure is easy, simply reduce the force (with padding) or increase the area (with hard plate, increasing the area the force is applied to).

If you want to stop a knife, you need something that is cut-resistant and flexible. Chainmaille does the trick quite well as cutting and slashing goes, but is terrible for blunt force.

If you want to stop a punch you want thick padding that absorbs the energy, and/or hard shell to increase the area the force is applied to.  The thick padding is usually not very good at stopping sharp objects however.

Last option of course is deflection, converting momentum that would go toward hurting you into a vector that doesn't hit you.  Think the armour worn by jousters on horses - its always angled to deflect enemy hits.

What am I getting at?  You need to decide what you want to stop, and solve each level of the problem.

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