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Body Armor Panel Styles

BODY ARMOR PANEL STYLESThere are a variety of body armor shapes and styles available for purchase10%SHOP NOW 20%SHOP NOWBuy 01 get 01 freeSHOP NOWTOP BUY 01 GET 01 FREEExample product title$99.00Add To CartExample product title$99.00Add To CartExample product title$99.00Add To CartExample product title$99.00Add To Cart


There are a variety of body armor shapes and styles available for purchase according to the carrier style you own, and according to mission need and amount of surface coverage protection.  The following information should help you match the proper panel style to you vest.

Generally speaking, panels may be found in the following configurations:

  • Concealable Panel Style 
  • Tactical Panel Style 
  • Plate Backer Style 

You may also find panels cut to fit specific style vests such as the HIGHCOM ARE or CHASE TACTICAL Series of TROOPER APC armor carriers.  Individual armor manufactuers may also offer custom or proprietary cuts for their models, but many follow along the previously mentioned styles.

Additionally, the plate backers themselves are manufacturered in varios sizes and cuts such as a Full Cut, Shooter's Cut, Swimmer's Cut, SAPI cut, etc. exactly as their hard armor counterparts.

Concealable Armor Cut

Good for the vast majority of vests worn under the uniform
shirt or for slipping in and out of overt armor carriers. It may be purchased with or without extended side coverage.


The SPEAR/BALCS is a military-inspired cut that allows for a balance between rapid mobility and protection.

Tactical Armor Cut

Provides additional protection on the upper back and lower edge of the neck  Generally for standalone entry vests.

APC Armor Cut

The APC cut is designed to protect the anterior and posterior surface of the body, with very slight side protection.  It is designed for mobility and speed, specially when handling patients.

Soft armor is also available for plate carriers in similar sizes and cuts as their hard armor counterparts.   You may see these referred to as "Plate Backers":

Full Cut

A square or a rectangle – often used as a back plate, side protection, or inserted into a backpack or other case.

Swimmer's Cut

A more extreme clip/cut that extends further down the side of the plate rather than a 45* cut off the corner, which allows for most arm and shoulder movement. This is for highly active operators and disaster relief teams, this type of plate, however, may offer less coverage than the Shooter's Cut


SAPI cut plates basically have a 45* or close symmetrical clip and are radius rounded corners.  SAPI is also a name used to describe a specific level of military ballistic protection, therefore terminology may vary depending on context (cut style vs. protection level)

Shooter's Cut

The most common cut. It is rectangle with top corners cut/angled to allow better arm movement and weapon shouldering, typically worn in the front of carriers/vests.

Each cut style can also be found in a variety of sizes to meet user needs:

Here are some examples of manufacturer-specific panel shapes designed to fit proprietary models:

When purchasing a concealable vest product, the panels are essentially the product, what you are buying.  The lightweight carrier is a mere accessory, so panel shape is not much of a concern outside of course of the coverage area considerations.  When purchasing tactical outer carries and panels separately, you certainly have to make sure the carrier size and panel shape are compatible.

We sell armor panels to fit every tactical outer carrier we sell, and are only too happy to help you make the right decision.

V50 is a critical measure in assessing the ballistic performance of helmets. Let’s dive into the details:

What is V50?

  • The V50 ballistic limit is the velocity at which 50% of projectiles penetrate a protective material (such as a helmet).
  • It’s a crucial parameter for evaluating how well a helmet can withstand ballistic threats.

  • How is V50 Tested?
    • The V50 test involves firing specific projectiles at the helmet to determine the velocity at which they penetrate.
    • The tests are conducted with varying levels of kinetic energy to simulate common battlefield scenarios.
    • The goal is to understand where the helmet will fail and how it performs against ballistic threats.
    NIJ Standards and V50 Testing:
    • The National Institute of Justice (NIJ) sets standards for protective equipment.
    • Helmets undergo V50 testing to ensure they can withstand ballistic threats.
    • The V50 standards include a series of four ballistic tests using different rounds with varying energy levels.
    • For example, the initial test involves a 17-grain bullet fired from a 22” .223 barrel.
    • While NIJ Level IIIA helmets cannot fully stop penetration from high-velocity projectiles, they are crucial in mitigating injuries caused by fragmentation near blast zones.

    Why V50 Matters: 

    Most battlefield head injuries result from fragmentation due to proximity to blast radius.
    • Helmets must be able to withstand these fragments.
    • V50 testing helps manufacturers ensure their products meet safety standards and protect those who rely on them.
    • Remember, V50 testing ensures that helmets can withstand ballistic threats and keep our protectors safe.

    The higher the V50 number, the greater protection it provides.