Hillbilly body armor test


PDA






chopinbloc
February 20, 2013, 12:21 PM
In a thread on another gun forum, a user showed us that floor tiles could be used to stop rifle rounds. I decided to test whether it was possible to make homemade "body armor" that would actually work. I'm pleasantly surprised by the results.

I used three PEI grade V porcelain floor tiles with a coat of Herculiner on the front and between tiles and a thick coat (about a quarter inch) on the back to capture fragments. I placed a paper grocery bag behind (to see if anything came through) and shot it at about twenty feet with .223, 7.62x39mm, and .40 S&W. Unfortunately, I didn't know the close range POI on my AK as well as on my AR so I had to shoot it three times with the AK to get a hit where I wanted. The reason is that the first shot was too close to both edges and caused the whole corner to bend back into the paper. I don't *think* the bullet made it through but I couldn't be sure until the third shot.

Afterward, I shot it with an additional ten rounds of .40 and not a single round made it through.

This stuff did quite a bit better than I expected.


Video of test (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SXmyCfB_k5I)

SXmyCfB_k5I

If you enjoyed reading about "Hillbilly body armor test" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!
Poper
February 20, 2013, 12:47 PM
Looks like it could be a method to harden particular areas of a structure.
Most new home construction in AZ is sticks and stucco. Line the areas beside doors and below windows under the stucco during construction.

For block construction, line the back side of the block before applying interior furring and insulation.

Probably would fail under continued assault, but for an immediate temporary protection it would probably work fine.

Just a thought.

Poper

Derek Zeanah
February 20, 2013, 12:50 PM
That's actually really cool. Any chance you shot it with M855 green-tips?

<*(((><
February 20, 2013, 12:56 PM
What would be cool to see is the use of porcelain mosaic tiles that are 1" square that are attached to a mesh sheet and do the same thing (alternating the grout lines with the other sheets) but allow it to remain slightly flexible (maybe source some type of rubberized compound, in lieu of the herculiner) if one could achieve the same stopping power in something that could be molded into body armor. I would think the added benefit of smaller tiles is that when the bullet hits it would possibly not break the surrounding tiles which would remain intact. It also seems that the smaller tiles would have a slight give that would slow the bullet, rather than all the inertia getting absorbed by what the armor is attached to. These are all just my observations and thoughts. Hmmm....I might have to run to home depot this weekend.

http://a248.e.akamai.net/origin-cdn.volusion.com/khhau.htuvf/v/vspfiles/photos/m-hex-mg-2T.jpg?1352214016

JRH6856
February 20, 2013, 01:25 PM
I would think the best way to make it flexible would be to use the same design as overlapping plate mail armor. Make up 2"x3" plates, 3 tiles thick with a piece of leather between two of the tiles and extending from the top. Using the leather, sew the plates to a vest in rows so that the rows overlap and you have at least 1 plate thickness everywhere.

The thing would be a bit heavy though.

CoRoMo
February 20, 2013, 01:30 PM
Hillbilly?

ZZZ
February 20, 2013, 01:51 PM
What happens if the stuff does end up getting in your body?

Cosmoline
February 20, 2013, 02:21 PM
Spackle it directly to your body!

Derek Zeanah
February 20, 2013, 02:38 PM
Spackle it directly to your body!
Yeah, but how can I attach it to my tactical wheelbarrow.... :uhoh:

Mayvik
February 20, 2013, 02:38 PM
Weight per unit area?

bikerdoc
February 20, 2013, 02:46 PM
weight ?

Risky
February 20, 2013, 02:48 PM
That is outstanding performance. So how much did this project cost to build? And, as asked above, whats the weight??

chopinbloc
February 20, 2013, 02:57 PM
Three tiles weigh about 12 lbs without the bed liner but for the next iteration, I plan to use only two tiles, less bed liner, and cut them to 10"x12" "shooter's cut."

That's an interesting idea with the mosaic tiles. I don't expect that you could get a lot of flexibility but you could form a curved plate pretty easily.

rcmodel
February 20, 2013, 03:01 PM
Seems to me the mosaic tiles would be like hiding from a BB gun behind a chain link fence.

Lots of cracks there for a bullet to slip through at any point there is a crack.

rc

Texan Scott
February 20, 2013, 03:26 PM
Didn't we recently establish that two layers of stainless onieda cookware makes the best body armor? (J/k :p )

Let's try a hybrid approach: tile bedlinered to the high-nickle sandwich-steel stainless pot bottom. Encapsulated ceramic plate backed by a metal plate ought to stop a single hit from small rifle rounds.

If it does, cut it 10x12, radius the corners slightly, and put it in a cheap 600 denier paintball plate carrier.

Now... where would you wear it?

bsheets20061
February 20, 2013, 03:30 PM
I too would love to know the weight overall. Great demonstration by the way

USAF_Vet
February 20, 2013, 03:31 PM
I need someone to duct tape this to my back, I'm headed to the mall.

glennv
February 20, 2013, 03:33 PM
Thanks for the post buddy. Now they're going to require background checks when purchasing more than 4 sheets of bathroom tile.

Sav .250
February 20, 2013, 03:57 PM
I`d like to see somebody all decked out in that get-up waiting for a 50 cal, Ap round to end there existance. There are times when folks have way to much spare time on their hands.

Fishslayer
February 20, 2013, 04:16 PM
I need someone to duct tape this to my back, I'm headed to the mall.

You'll need more than two layers to defeat multiple hits from a .338 Lapua... ;)

silicosys4
February 20, 2013, 04:39 PM
^^ That's a world in which floor tiles will not save you.

USAF_Vet
February 20, 2013, 04:40 PM
Should I load up a brief case with these plates too? Use it as a shield while my partner covers me?


Geckgo45 never gets old.

-v-
February 20, 2013, 04:53 PM
Interesting test, I applaud the inquisitive spirit.

Just a thought, but NIJ LVL III steel plates are $100 for a 10"x12" and weigh only 7lb and only 5lb for a 8"x10". Heck, even Amazon (http://www.amazon.com/SecPro-Level-Titanium-Coated-Shooter/dp/B00AC6IPHW/ref=wl_it_dp_o_pC_nS_nC?ie=UTF8&colid=1FP52X49TL2EK&coliid=I2U1DFCOSAANGO) and eBay sell them. (http://www.ebay.com/itm/AR500-Body-Armor-2-CURVED-10x12-Comfort-Cut-Plates-2-6-x6-Powdercoated-/281064347101?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item4170bd95dd)

chopinbloc
February 20, 2013, 05:46 PM
Sav .250, ESAPI plates won't stop .50 BMG, either. ;^)

That said, I'd be surprised if this would have stopped a 7.62X51mm.

MachIVshooter
February 20, 2013, 05:57 PM
Always fun to test this stuff, but I'll stick to purpose-built armor for my protection. I went with AR500Armor's contoured set up. Carrier, front, back and side contoured plates for $345 shipped, they proved it to stop multiple direct hits of M855.

http://www.ar500armor.com/index.php?dispatch=categories.view&category_id=165

It's a little heavier than ceramic, and it's not true level IV (NIJ L IV rated to AP 7.62 NATO); More like L III+. But it's a lot less expensive, and the plates are not compromised after a hit like ceramics are.

Makes sense for those of us who want to have such protection available, but are unlikely to actually need it and thus unwilling to spend $1,000+

Odd Job
February 20, 2013, 06:09 PM
Seems to me the mosaic tiles would be like hiding from a BB gun behind a chain link fence.
Lots of cracks there for a bullet to slip through at any point there is a crack.

It has been done already, with Dragonskin. They had overlapping ceramic discs but there was a problem with the adhesive used to keep the discs in place. There were also legal issues which meant it could not be DOJ approved.
But the imbricated layout was sound.

JDoe
February 20, 2013, 07:40 PM
Body armor is available for everyone even if laws are made to restrict it.

Who is going to ban floor flies?

Risky
February 20, 2013, 08:35 PM
Always fun to test this stuff, but I'll stick to purpose-built armor for my protection. I went with AR500Armor's contoured set up. Carrier, front, back and side contoured plates for $345 shipped, they proved it to stop multiple direct hits of M855.

http://www.ar500armor.com/index.php?dispatch=categories.view&category_id=165

It's a little heavier than ceramic, and it's not true level IV (NIJ L IV rated to AP 7.62 NATO); More like L III+. But it's a lot less expensive, and the plates are not compromised after a hit like ceramics are.

Makes sense for those of us who want to have such protection available, but are unlikely to actually need it and thus unwilling to spend $1,000+
It can stop multiple hits easily but without a spall liner, all of that bullet splatter would be going into your neck/face, arms and legs.

It really bothers me when companies sell steel plate as armor without offering, much less mentioning the need for spall protection... its setting up their customers for severe injury.

MachIVshooter
February 20, 2013, 09:52 PM
It really bothers me when companies sell steel plate as armor without offering, much less mentioning the need for spall protection... its setting up their customers for severe injury.

They talk about that, and future products will option laminating Kevlar or another ballistic nylon to the plates.

I may investigate doing something like that, but the odds of me needing it are extremely low (this was more just a cool toy I wanted), and the carriers do offer some spall mitigation.

Not the best protection out there, but beats the heck out of a jacket!

-v-
February 20, 2013, 10:26 PM
It can stop multiple hits easily but without a spall liner, all of that bullet splatter would be going into your neck/face, arms and legs.

It really bothers me when companies sell steel plate as armor without offering, much less mentioning the need for spall protection... its setting up their customers for severe injury.
I've also looked into that, and its fairly easy to get 3000 denier ballistic Kevlar by the yard. 2-3 layers of it is enough to catch the spall and its easy enough to make a 2-3 layer pouch to place the plates in to catch the spall. Just requires a little leg work on the end user's part at the end, plus another $100 or so for the kevlar cloth. Also, some steel plate manufacturers do coat their plates in a ballistic compound to catch/minimize spall.

JonnyGringo
February 20, 2013, 11:02 PM
Maybe Martha Stewart would be willing to put her name on some of the more decorative models........

:D

chopinbloc
February 21, 2013, 10:31 AM
The thread that got this started was a thread on Arfcom that was about reducing fragmentation from steel plates. Here are a few salient points from that thread:

Many steel plates can be defeated by M193 at close range, even though they stop M855. Velocity matters.

Although Kevlar can be used to stop fragmentation, it needs to be adhered well to the plate if you want to get away with only a few layers. If the fragments have to move roughly parallel with the surface of the fabric, 3-5 layers is sufficient. If a loose pouch is used, most of the fragments won't hit the fabric until they reach the edge of the plate and you need a LOT more than 5 layers to get the job done.

Plain bed liner does a fantastic job at reducing fragmentation. Proper surface prep is critical and both Herculiner brand and Line-X do really well. Duplicolor is total junk and will not work.

The carriers themselves offer virtually ZERO protection from fragments.

Video of plate carrier being totally shredded by 7.62x39mm (cussword in intro) (http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=SCn8KOoBNxs)

Video of fragmentation in gelatin (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LNoKHNHuWQk)

Sheepdog1968
February 21, 2013, 06:38 PM
Mythbusters several years ago tested ceramic floor tiles ability to stop bullets. It did.

PGT
February 21, 2013, 07:05 PM
What would be cool to see is the use of porcelain mosaic tiles that are 1" square that are attached to a mesh sheet and do the same thing (alternating the grout lines with the other sheets) but allow it to remain slightly flexible (maybe source some type of rubberized compound, in lieu of the herculiner) if one could achieve the same stopping power in something that could be molded into body armor. I would think the added benefit of smaller tiles is that when the bullet hits it would possibly not break the surrounding tiles which would remain intact. It also seems that the smaller tiles would have a slight give that would slow the bullet, rather than all the inertia getting absorbed by what the armor is attached to. These are all just my observations and thoughts. Hmmm....I might have to run to home depot this weekend.


http://www.pinnaclearmor.com/body-armor/dragon-skin/

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=aYaSRIbPWkM

Derek Zeanah
February 21, 2013, 07:06 PM
Yeah, but the Dragon Skin folks won't sell to us normal folk...

PGT
February 21, 2013, 07:10 PM
True. Is Spectra still in vogue? My bro worked for a company that made vests from it way back when (Oliver North was involved somehow) and a friend is a mechanical engineer for Dupont that designs the machinery that Spectra, Kevlar and a new fabric is made on (not sure if its released yet). He just got the patent for the machinery's design in the last few months.

Geno
February 21, 2013, 07:17 PM
Just when I was wanting to armor my truck tires, here comes this thread. Now, I just have to locate some square truck tires!

Okay, seriously, it really is interesting. I'm thinking, as in cost-effective "safe room", or something to that effect. Thanks for the post!

Geno

Sol
February 21, 2013, 08:25 PM
This is a job for aramids. Stiff and rigid material tend to become secondary projectiles. I guess you could cover it.

chopinbloc
February 22, 2013, 01:04 PM
That's what the bed liner is for.

chopinbloc
February 26, 2013, 11:27 AM
New version is two tiles with a cutting board backer in tactical red. I cut it down to 10"x12" and cut the corners. I actually just measured my Level III steel plate for the dimensions of the corner cuts. Turns out they took 2.5" from each corner so that leaves 5" across the top edge. Those Herculiner cans are a real pain to open. Thought I could make it happen with the Dillo but I had to take after it with a screwdriver. They actually glue the lids down.

http://i50.tinypic.com/bf2fk4.jpg

http://i48.tinypic.com/1tatc0.jpg

http://i46.tinypic.com/2jgx36.jpg

http://i49.tinypic.com/iogsc6.jpg

Deadman644
February 26, 2013, 12:55 PM
For all us ignorant Cajuns just what is S-Mart?

Pinkbunny
February 26, 2013, 02:07 PM
For all us ignorant Cajuns just what is S-Mart?
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pFriRcIwqNU

chopinbloc
March 1, 2013, 06:53 PM
So when I pulled it off the grocery bag I had it sitting on to dry, the bed liner peeled right off the cutting board. I roughed it up with a wire wheel and reapplied the bed liner.

Millwright
March 1, 2013, 09:34 PM
In WW2 a similar "armor" was created by the "Wheezers and Dodgers" (DMWD) for use by cargo shipping and light military vessels as protection against straffing attacks. They used Penlee granite chips in a road tar mastic composition, as I recall.

Thanks for sharing ! The current hoplophobic fad is going to generate a lot more of this sort of inventive thinking I'm sure. Right now I suspect there are hundreds of inventors pondering ways to evade idiotic "assault weapon" designations and the current, (and perhaps indefinite ? ) ammo shortages ! >MW

Trent
March 2, 2013, 02:18 AM
Tagging for updates.. cool stuff!

coloradokevin
March 2, 2013, 04:08 AM
I`d like to see somebody all decked out in that get-up waiting for a 50 cal, Ap round to end there existance. There are times when folks have way to much spare time on their hands.

There's a limit to anything, but I have to say that I'm impressed with the performance for a cheap home-made plate armor that isn't all *that* heavy.

Lets face it, my Level IIIA vest at work (with a trauma plate) still isn't rated to stop the .223 Remington or the 7.62X39mm. And, the plate armor we keep in our armory is quite heavy when we're looking for protection against rifle threats.

I don't know of any wearable armor that will stop a .50 BMG AP round. Period.

zbird
March 2, 2013, 04:45 AM
Thanks for the idea, I'm going to do my safe room with your design.

RustHunter87
March 2, 2013, 11:00 AM
I think if you added a mud flap or 2, to the equation it would hold up a little longer

Trent
March 2, 2013, 11:26 AM
I don't know of any wearable armor that will stop a .50 BMG AP round. Period.

I sure as heck wouldn't want to be wearing it either.

Blunt trauma from a handgun can kill you or seriously injure you.

Blunt trauma from a 50 BMG with 45 times the kinetic energy?

I'll pass, thankyouverymuch.

chopinbloc
March 4, 2013, 12:00 PM
Blunt trauma is primarily the result of back face deformation. Hard armor plates usually have very little, if any, back face deformation. If there were a wearable plate available that could stop .50 BMG it is unlikely that it would hurt any more to be shot while wearing it that it does to fire a .50 BMG rifle.

I doubt that this configuration of plates can stop 7.62x51mm, let alone really energetic stuff but I intend to test it to failure as soon as I settle on a configuration.

Trent
March 4, 2013, 01:58 PM
How not to test armor.

Also a good view of blunt trauma from a handgun.

I'm not embedding this as there is blood involved, and there is some foul language after the kid lets the other kid shoot him in his vest....

Watch at your own risk.

http://www.ebaumsworld.com/video/watch/80592270/

Sam Cade
March 4, 2013, 02:04 PM
Also a good view of blunt trauma from a handgun.

No, that is a gunshot wound.

It was a plate carrier and the shooter missed the plate and penetrated the vest.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YUXUCzKdkhM

Trent
March 4, 2013, 02:05 PM
No, that is a gunshot wound.

It was a plate carrier and the shooter missed the plate.

You sure? That looks exactly like my IIIA vest (which does have a plate pocket)

(They also find the bullet IN the armor about the 1:00 mark)

Sam Cade
March 4, 2013, 02:14 PM
Pretty sure.

In the video I linked he (around 30 sec mark) he mentions that the bullet was about an inch from his heart.

Trent
March 4, 2013, 02:29 PM
Oh wow, my mistake then.

Thanks for the follow up video you added.

(You'd expect a GSW center mass to bleed more...)

Trent
March 4, 2013, 02:35 PM
Actually if you watch that video you linked through to the end that WAS body armor, and not JUST a plate carrier.

It was expired.

Before shooting the video they tested against the back side and it stopped all the rounds. (He talked about that right towards the end)

The front didn't stop the round.

Evidently it slowed it down and stripped the jacket (they found a part of the round in the vest, the rest went in to him).

EDIT: good thing his drunk cop friend (!!!!!) that shot him missed the center. Otherwise that round would have nailed him in the heart.

Sam Cade
March 4, 2013, 03:04 PM
(You'd expect a GSW center mass to bleed more...)

Sometimes they do, sometimes they don't...at least externally.

No way to tell how much blood is being lost internally

zdc1775
March 4, 2013, 05:48 PM
My wife is going to hate you, but I know what I will be trying next time I'm off and she has to work.

chopinbloc
March 11, 2013, 10:43 PM
"Mk II" test:


BORLLkLpG6U


Cliff's notes: two tiles with cutting board and bed liner defeated by 7.62x39mm. Stops one round of .45 ACP and defeated by the second.

Trent
March 12, 2013, 12:24 AM
Maybe try the cutting board in the middle?

When shooting steel plates, my 50 BMG will penetrate 1.5" of mild steel (easily).

However, when I stack two 3/8" plates with a 0.5" gap, the first is penetrated and the second is only dented; despite there being HALF of the metal present. That little gap makes a big difference in penetration.

chopinbloc
March 12, 2013, 12:18 PM
Interesting idea. I'd still need to have a cutting board on the back. In earlier testing it was apparent that fragments of bullet and tile can still come out the back, even if the round was mostly stopped.

SundownRider
March 12, 2013, 03:04 PM
I'm thinking indoor backstop, myself. Interesting ideas forming in my evil mind:D

Trent
March 12, 2013, 03:36 PM
Interesting idea. I'd still need to have a cutting board on the back. In earlier testing it was apparent that fragments of bullet and tile can still come out the back, even if the round was mostly stopped.

Well.. anything reasonably lightweight that could serve as both a spacer AND an anti-fragment layer would be good. I'm thinking something along the lines of floormat, mudflap, something rubbery. Cutting board might be prone to shattering under the amount of stress you're putting things under. :)

You'd want to bond it front and back to the tile that's sandwiching it, somehow, to keep it from separating.

If the tile is doing a good job of stripping the jacket off and starting the round deformation, a thin layer of backing sheet steel would probably stop the remaining lead.

Trent
March 12, 2013, 03:40 PM
Example of two layers of thin steel with a spacer stopping 3" magnum 12 gauge 00 buck at a range of 7 yards.

It was shot multiple times and no projectiles penetrated.

http://i.imgur.com/c6XgP1el.jpg

With the penetration of 00 buck, I was impressed. The computer case is VERY thin steel. But, the projectiles deformed on the outer layer of the computer case, passed effortlessly through the circuitboard, and were stopped by the motherboard backplate (also very thin sheet steel).

EDIT: Malfunctioning electronics at my house universally get the "PULL" treatment off the back deck. :)

RustHunter87
March 12, 2013, 07:06 PM
Im telling ya use some mudflaps, those heavy duty types with the fiber in it, there flexible and the hurculiner should bond to it.

chopinbloc
March 12, 2013, 07:26 PM
SundownRider, you wouldn't want to use floor tiles in any application intended to stop lots of rounds because each shot shatters them, degrading their ability to stop the next one.

Trent, the cutting board does crack but the bed liner does a fair job of holding stuff in place until the whole assembly is trashed.

chopinbloc
April 6, 2013, 09:15 AM
Hillbilly body armor Mk IV:

http://i49.tinypic.com/125gfmo.jpg

http://i49.tinypic.com/23uegls.jpg

http://i49.tinypic.com/osqzwp.jpg

http://i48.tinypic.com/ao969y.jpg


Three tiles, with a layer of bed liner and woven fiberglass fabric on the back side of each layer. I also made one with the same configuration but only two tiles, which I think will be good for multiple pistol hits or maybe one .223/5.56mm. I was very conservative with the bed liner.

leadcounsel
April 7, 2013, 01:32 AM
This is an excellent way to affordably "armor" bedroom walls and even doors of family members.

You can pick up scrap ceremic tiles for very cheap ...

Lots of threads discuss stray bullets and gunfire in the home. This is an affordable way to give piece of mind to the stray bullets that might get fired in a home invasion, and/or a way to reinforce a 'panic room' for family members. Throw up 3 layers of cheap ceramic tile and then drywall over it on the inside walls of your kids rooms or master bedroom. Or cut the top edge off a hollow core door and fill it with 2 layers of tile.

Silverado6x6
April 7, 2013, 08:38 AM
I installed four layers of an adhesive roofing material that come in big rolls to the interior of my Silverado door panels. My purpose for doing that was sound absorption for a high end sound system I installed. I forget the trade name, made by Grace industries, looks like Bear Bond that nascar uses, its like a rubberized sheet that is about a quarter inch thick, when it adheres it is nigh impossible to remove it. You buy it by the roll, about $100 per roll.

Its basically a roofing product for use in areas that gets a lot of snow and ice, so I am thinking of making door panel inserts using this stuff as well as tiles and herculiner, make my side door nearly resistant to any drive by assault, of course thats below the window.

Another use for this stuff is reinforcing your homes front door hinges and door lock area.

Deltaboy
April 7, 2013, 09:35 AM
Great ideas.

chopinbloc
April 23, 2013, 06:51 PM
"Mk III" test:


bk_fxBi-a5Y


Cliff's notes: Three layers of tile with fiberglass and thin layers of bed liner are defeated by 7.62x39mm and 5.56x45mm.

stbarsh
April 23, 2013, 11:34 PM
Seems like it'd be heavy...

If you enjoyed reading about "Hillbilly body armor test" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!