My Idea for Body Armour.


October 12, 2006, 08:37 PM
Well here it goes I was reading a thread a while ago about how effective sand bags are at stopping bullets, well that got me thinking what if u could use sand in body armour for protection? well sand would get to heavy espesially when it got wet so i was thinking if there was a way that you could take the sand and some how make it lighter and water profe thus u would be able to put it in to a better fiting body armour because being like sand it would be flexible so it could provide more movement than kevlar and steel plated armour thus making the soldier more efective in combat but also protected, there is a few flaws to this what i can think of
1 if it leaks
2 i think i read some where that it takes at least 3 inches of sand to stop a .30-06 caliber bullet so it might get bullky
but i was also think u could customise the armour to diffrent standars like if ur a beat bobby and u want just some protection from pistol caliber bullets then u could take sand away. but then if u were an soldier in say Iraq u might want to add a couple more inches of sand to protect from rifle rounds another disadvante i think it would have is that u might be stab able ie if ur charged by the enemy and baoneted then it might just go through easily also the armour would have to have partition in it so if u did get hit all you would have to do is fill it back up with sand and patch up the hole and away u go. so what do u guys think thanks to any1 who replys

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October 12, 2006, 08:42 PM
The 'sand armor' would have to be so thick as to be less practical than using reinforced steel plates for it to have the same bullet stopping capability that spectra fiber or kevlar has.

Not to be harsh, but the idea is kinda entirely unpractical, ineffective, and pointless.

Josh Aston
October 12, 2006, 08:43 PM
Once you have the sand dense enough and thick enough to actually stop a bullet, it will be even less flexible than kevlar.

October 12, 2006, 08:45 PM
I can just see Mall Ninjas every where..."Can I fill my briefcase with sand to stop the .338 rounds?

October 12, 2006, 08:48 PM
3" of sand can stop my 30-'06? I doubt that. Unless it was packed hard enough, but it would probably then be called rock and not sand.

October 12, 2006, 08:49 PM
Oh, golly.

Have you ever picked up a SMALL bag of sand? A bag that is no bigger than a 10 lb. bag of flour is HEAVY. You want to try to wear bagsful of the stuff around your person for body armor?????:banghead:

Is there something in the water these days that is causing a total lunatic flip out on gun forums?? Get a GRIP.


October 12, 2006, 09:12 PM
A seemingly honest question was asked by a new shooter. In what way, shape or form are the insults and snark helpful or educational?

Irwin, you could probably rig something wearable filled with sand that would stop a bullet. There would be problems with the size and weight of such a solution, which some of the more helpful commentors have pointed out. The problem is better alternatives exist, that despite higher cost, stop a bullet with substantially less weight and bulk, which are generally the holy grail of body armor.

Larry Ashcraft
October 12, 2006, 09:32 PM
First off, 3 inches of sand won't stop a 30.06 bullet. In fact, 3 inches of rock won't stop a 30.06 bullet. Slow it down maybe, break it up some, but not stop it.

Maybe you misunderstood? Three feet of sand would probably stop a 30.06 bullet, but I'm not going to volunteer to test it.

Here's a test you can try: Fill three 12" square boxes with sand, and insert cardboard spacers every 3 or 4 inches. Place them end to end. Fire a 30.06 or other high powered rifle into them and see what the penetration level is. You can pull up the spacers to get a more precise measurement.

I've never done this, but I'm betting close to a foot and a half.

Sand makes a great barricade, but wouldn't work as body armor. No how, no way.

October 12, 2006, 09:37 PM
Three inches, no, but not a whole lot of sand. Again, the Box of Truth reveals all:

.22LR, 9mm, 45ACP, 5.56mm, .308, and 45-70, nothing penetrated more than 6 inches of sand.

October 12, 2006, 09:47 PM
Lol I guess I thought it through but not actually think it through if u catch my drift.

Still 2 Many Choices!?
October 12, 2006, 10:01 PM
So as an alternative, how about a liquid, reinforced by a hardened steel/ceramic plates(small plates like ancient meshed or scaled armor)? The plate and ceramics would stop the bullet itself, and the liquid would disperse(atleast spread) the trama inducing force/shock over a wider area. It would still be heavy, but I bet it would take multiple combat type hits, as it would really be hard to hit the exact same small ,"scale", of armor...

Still 2 Many Choices!?

October 12, 2006, 10:28 PM
I think the notion to wear sand is perfectly fine. The problem is that you're using it in the bulkiest manner. Apply head and pressure to that sand, IE sinter it into a tile, and then back that tile with a high-tensile material in the form of a fabric.

You could travel back in time and make armour out of sand, silk and glue. But you'd probably want to make it lighter, and harder, so you'd switch to harder materials like Al2O3, or others.

The amount of sand required to stop a bullet probably isn't listed in this thread yet, because it is variable. Different test aparatuses will have different levels of confinement. If you had packed sand, with no air space in a sealed container, then it would stop a bullet fastest, and the more space the sand has available for movement, the further the bullet will penetrate.

IIRC one important aspect of MEXAS (Modular Expandable Armor System) tiles is ceramic confinement.

I also suggest that 3" of rock will most likely do a fine job of stopping most bullets, depending on the rock and the bullet.

October 12, 2006, 10:31 PM
I like where your mind is at Irwin, as in the need for protection, but just go buy some kevlar... ;)

October 12, 2006, 10:33 PM
I'm gonna have to go

October 12, 2006, 10:46 PM
This is what I love about thr is that u can post and idea though or ask a question and get mainly helpfull replies, Still 2 many choice's ad lucky I like ur ideas and MountainBear if I bought some kevlar and wore it all day id just draw wierd looks last time I checked there's not any need for kevlar on the mean streets of StAndrews ( I dont think Id know were to buy any from anyway) This all steamed from a random thought I had on the bus on the way to work. Irwin

Larry Ashcraft
October 12, 2006, 10:49 PM
I also suggest that 3" of rock will most likely do a fine job of stopping most bullets, depending on the rock and the bullet.
My informal testing with 6" rocks and a .270 Ackley Improved (Hornady 130 gr spire point) proved to me, at least, that I won't trust the rock to stop that bullet.

YMMV of course.

October 12, 2006, 11:33 PM
Already mentioned, but 6" of sand will stop most civilian small arms.

AJ Dual
October 12, 2006, 11:41 PM
The new shear thickening nano-fluids are sort of along these lines and already in production for some sporting pads.

The idea is to add them to traditional Kevlar, so it goes rigid on impact.

October 13, 2006, 12:13 AM
Irwin, you wouldn't look any wierder than walking around with a suit of sand ;)

Play a round at the Old Course for me will you...:)

October 13, 2006, 01:39 AM
Pinnacle already makes flexible body armor capable of stopping multiple rifle rounds
It's a lot lighter than wearing a sandbag.

October 13, 2006, 10:10 AM
Sadly MountainBear I dont play golf even if i did I dont even have the cash to play at the old course with the money im earning, though i just thought after reading ur post that i could mabey use my sand armour for protection against golf balls? lol be ware I will probably start posting more ideas when i have them Im like that i have a good idea in my head then when its said out loud to some1 its suddenly isnt that good. Irwin

October 13, 2006, 10:41 AM
Sand is simply used because it is so cheap. About $10-$20 per ton in bulk without deliverly charges. I works for immobile sites like buildings.

October 13, 2006, 11:15 AM
1) Stop typing posts like you're sending a text message on your cell phone.
2) Go read Neal Stephenson's Snow Crash for a good idea of what fictional body armor looks like.
3) Then go Google the following terms: Kevlar, Interceptor, Point Blank, SAPI, NIJ Body Armor Threat levels.
4) Pay attention in Physics class.

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