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Wearing body armor to the gun range?

Discussion in 'General Gun Discussions' started by Isaac-1, Dec 6, 2012.

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  1. Isaac-1

    Isaac-1 Well-Known Member

    Just wondering what your thoughts are on wearing body armor (concealed or not) to the gun range? Is it prudent or paranoid? I ask while thinking back on a recent visit to a local handgun range where there were a number newbies learning to shoot, often from people that had no business teaching them.
  2. Magoo

    Magoo Well-Known Member

    If you feel the need to wear body armor anywhere, and are not required to do so as LEO or active miltary, I think it's best to avoid said place altogether.
  3. grubbylabs

    grubbylabs Well-Known Member

    What Magoo said
  4. Sam1911

    Sam1911 Moderator

    We discuss this somewhat regularly. A place with a lot of new folks trying to learn on their own certainly can make you wonder about your safety.

    Fortunately, firearm accidents are still very, very uncommon, and serious injuries at firing ranges are even less common. This isn't a war zone, nor a felony arrest -- no one's actually targeting you, so the risk is pretty low.

    I'd say more "paranoid" than "prudent."
  5. Old Shooter

    Old Shooter Well-Known Member

    Hearing protection....check
    eye protection.........check
    body armor..............find someplace else to shoot.
  6. taliv

    taliv Moderator

    if it's just a regular square shooting range, no, i wouldn't even consider armor.

    if it's a "shoot house" or some training circumstance, then body armor may be a requirement and would certainly be prudent. i would not view this training by respected trainers as something to avoid.
  7. Isaac-1

    Isaac-1 Well-Known Member

    Maybe I am a bit more prudent than most when it comes to gun accidents, one of my grandfathers was killed in a hunting accident, this is part of the reason I brought up the subject. He was shooting at a squirrel in his backyard with a pump action .22 (Winchester model 61) had a hang fire ejected the round and it blew up in his face, he died 3 days later in the hospital from the infection (he was also on Chemo at the time). As to the know when to be somewhere else, that is valid too, a couple of years ago I was out target shooting with a relative by marriage, he was using a Ruger 10-22, using cheap ammo that kept misfiring, he was ejecting right away to get back to shooting, so I told him the above story, the second time he immediately ejected a round after me telling him the story I decided it was time to leave and never to go shooting with him again.
  8. Hapworth

    Hapworth Well-Known Member

    Likely never needed -- but if it makes you more comfortable, do it. You're not wrong to be concerned about a lot of unknown, in many cases inexperienced shooters blasting away around you, especially if it's a public range.
  9. Skribs

    Skribs Well-Known Member

    Another factor is that if part of your defensive strategy involves body armor (i.e. you keep it in the closet next to your rifle), then wearing it to the gun range would let you practice with it on.
  10. 3twelves

    3twelves member

    Ricochet's can happen also if you shoot steel.
  11. Neo-Luddite

    Neo-Luddite Well-Known Member

    If you feel the need to wear armor for protection---shoot elsewhere.

    If, however, you wanted to wear your gear to make for a better and more true to conditions practice--good idea.
  12. psyopspec

    psyopspec Well-Known Member

    I would sometimes wear mine during the winter since it added a layer of warmth and peace of mind, though I never considered it a necessity. This was concealable soft armor I wore while working as a security guard.
  13. Stress_Test

    Stress_Test Well-Known Member

    Last trip at the (unsupervised) range, after seeing a woman walking around behind the shooting benches carrying a small revolver, finger wrapped around the trigger, body armor didn't seem like a bad idea at the time! Be my luck though that I'd get it in the head and the armor would be a moot point.

    She may have been doing that the whole time I was there but I didn't notice till I was packing up to leave. It made me pack a little faster!
  14. Sergei Mosin

    Sergei Mosin Well-Known Member

    If I saw somebody other than a uniformed police officer wearing body armor to the range - or anywhere else - I would leave. Normal people don't wear body armor in public. If your range is so unsafe that you need to wear body armor, you need to find a different range.
  15. PedalBiker

    PedalBiker Well-Known Member

    I got a shard in the belly shooting pock marked steel. Body armor would have helped there, but I'd hate to have it in my sinuses.

    I regularly wear helmets while biking, skiing and kayaking. Kayaking is the only sport where my helmet was regularly tested, but I've had to retire a bike helmet due to road damage as well.

    If you have it it doesn't do any good at home.
  16. akodo

    akodo Well-Known Member

    wearing body armor for fear of newbies = no

    wearing body armor because you own it, and it is good to know how to shoot in in while wearing it? = yes
  17. USAF_Vet

    USAF_Vet Well-Known Member

    Fear of what you consider to be not normal, huh? :rolleyes: If only those pesky open carriers would just hide their guns like 'normal' folk, we wouldn't have to see those scary guns. Sounds like progress to me.

    I don't always wear my personal body armor, but I do train with it from time to time as it is a part of my home defense set up. If that causes someone to leave the range, good. More room for me and less to deal with.
  18. Teachu2

    Teachu2 Well-Known Member

    If someone makes you nervous, move. I've done that a couple of times, and once returned to help get the idiot stop the bleeding.

    Grandpa died of an infection, a complication of chemo, not the "gun accident". He could have cut himself shaving, with the same result.

    I've seen peple show up at the range with armor, and I pack up and leave. They are the goofyest bunch of clowns I've seen since Star Trek conventions quit coming to town...
  19. TimeRegained

    TimeRegained Well-Known Member

    This is where a mother would say you've seen too many movies.
  20. GCBurner

    GCBurner Well-Known Member

    Some of the range officers at the defensive pistol and steel matches wear it. I've seen a couple of negligent discharges and muzzle sweeping of the bystanders from time to time from new shooters, so I don't blame them. Bullet fragments do fly, especially when shooting at steel, but the only person I've seen that got hit and had to seek treatment got a piece of a splattered bullet in the side of his neck, so body armor wouldn't have helped. I don't wear a vest, but I do pack a QuickClot trauma kit in my range bag, just in case.
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