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Old 12-11-2015, 02:33 PM   #11
Phantasm
 
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Default Re: High-Tech advanced body armor: DR 35, 5 vs crushing

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Originally Posted by DanHoward View Post
Keep in mind that High-Tech was written when the armour in question was making the rounds in the media and was surrounded by a lot of hype. There wasn't a lot of reliable data available to make a good judgement on how to model it in GURPS. The authors did the best with what they had.
Out of curiosity, how would you model it, Dan? You're probably our expert on this stuff, so I'll take your word over anyone else I know on its stats.
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Old 12-11-2015, 03:05 PM   #12
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Default Re: High-Tech advanced body armor: DR 35, 5 vs crushing

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DR is largely determined by the level of flexibility.
Well, a combination of flexibility and weight. As long as it doesn't stretch too much, the simple inertia of flexible armor will spread impacts and render them a lot less dangerous.

Absent materials that change properties depending on how fast they flex (shear-thickening fluids and the like), resistance to impact for flexible materials isn't going to change much for any given combination of weight and flexibility.
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Old 12-11-2015, 03:32 PM   #13
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Default Re: High-Tech advanced body armor: DR 35, 5 vs crushing

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Originally Posted by Ulzgoroth View Post

Did the armor actually work as advertised? (And if so why was it really rejected?) Did it work as advertised when new but fail after some sort of exposure/wear? Did it never work quite that well? (And if so, why did it pass the tests it did?)
First there was some "not invented here" problems and in particular with claims made in comparison to service sponsored vest/trauma plate combination.

_Never_ underestimate the effect of politics (both DC and intra-service kinds) on military procurement. Mavericks from outside the established military-industrial complex almost always run into trouble. There's virtually an entire genre of literature that's been written about the problem over long periods of time.

The DR 35 is the same as those military sponsored items. The dR5 is the same as the best "standard" scale though not what you could get with the best metal in Low Tech.

There was some talk about scales failing when hit and subsequent problems with multiple hits but trauma plates do that too. I can't see how the individual scales failing could be worse than the whole trauma plate shattering.

The real and indisputable problem was the adhesive that held everything together failing in the Iraqi heat (I've heard 130F). Either a classical hidden "crit fail" in development problem in gaming terms or an example of the systematic underestimation of how bad real world military conditions can be. The latter has been quite common over the years.
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Old 12-11-2015, 04:56 PM   #14
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Default Re: High-Tech advanced body armor: DR 35, 5 vs crushing

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The DR 35 is the same as those military sponsored items. The dR5 is the same as the best "standard" scale though not what you could get with the best metal in Low Tech.
I'm seeing references to level IV (AP 7.62x51) sections now, which would seem to fit the DR 35.
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Originally Posted by Fred Brackin View Post
The real and indisputable problem was the adhesive that held everything together failing in the Iraqi heat (I've heard 130F). Either a classical hidden "crit fail" in development problem in gaming terms or an example of the systematic underestimation of how bad real world military conditions can be. The latter has been quite common over the years.
That is certainly a claim that was made, but true or not it was definitely not undisputed at the time and I've not seen supporting follow-up data. It seems fuzzy enough to keep the 'just politics' interpretation viable.


(Also, while Pinnacle Armor went out of business, the armor (at the NIJ III level, not the full military version) does appear to be in production and available.)
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Old 12-11-2015, 05:49 PM   #15
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Default Re: High-Tech advanced body armor: DR 35, 5 vs crushing

The other problem was that its performance doesn't seem to be all that good -- it's actually pretty heavy for its protective value.
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Old 12-12-2015, 04:25 AM   #16
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Default Re: High-Tech advanced body armor: DR 35, 5 vs crushing

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The other problem was that its performance doesn't seem to be all that good -- it's actually pretty heavy for its protective value.
Isn't its point that it is concealable as or under clothing? That sounds cool for an adventurer who is either undercover or stacks another armour on top, but not so much for the military or patrolling police officers.
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Old 12-12-2015, 04:28 AM   #17
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Default Re: High-Tech advanced body armor: DR 35, 5 vs crushing

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The other problem was that its performance doesn't seem to be all that good -- it's actually pretty heavy for its protective value.
That is because the vest covered more area than the inserts in the the assault vest do in real life, it was lighter/area covered. I make no claims to how well it actually did protect those areas it covered but it did protect more area. HT and the later pyramid articles like the modern warfighter gear one give the inserts full torso protection when they are really only partial.

A typical modern insert plate is in reality something like the standalone plate I have: a 30cm*25cm class IV standalone plate weighting 3kg that is meant primarily for use in a non ballistic carrier vest. That coverage is considerably less than full, but does cover the center of torso and vitals from the front. Insert plates are usually about the same size but have lower protection values as standalone and are meant to be used with ballistic vests like the setup in HT to get a proper protection.
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Old 12-12-2015, 04:43 AM   #18
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Default Re: High-Tech advanced body armor: DR 35, 5 vs crushing

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Originally Posted by tbrock1031 View Post
Out of curiosity, how would you model it, Dan? You're probably our expert on this stuff, so I'll take your word over anyone else I know on its stats.
Without seeing results of more recent testing I'd probably just drop the DR to around 25 as suggested above and leave everything else the same.
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Old 12-12-2015, 01:37 PM   #19
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Default Re: High-Tech advanced body armor: DR 35, 5 vs crushing

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That is because the vest covered more area than the inserts in the the assault vest do in real life, it was lighter/area covered.
It was lighter per area covered than the system the Army was using, but that system is pretty heavy too. It's not lighter per area covered than other advanced armors.
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