||I rate this vest a five out of five. It is the damn nicest vest I've ever seen. This tells EVERYTHING about the vest.
The Interceptor Multi-Threat Body Armor System is made up of two modular components: the outer tactical vest and small-arms protective inserts, or plates. The new body armor, which is unisex, is equipped with removable throat & groin protectors, Deltoid protectors, shoulder protectors, as well as having the capability to add front and back (removable) SAPI plates, which can stop 8mm airsoft pellets with ease. The vest weighs from four to five pounds (itself, without added pouches or plates).
The Interceptor body armor's lighter weight provides more mobility than the older flak vest. The new armor also has an outer tactical vest made of fabric weave that's capable of stopping an 8 mm pellet, plus the webbing on the front and back of the vest that permits attaching other small pieces of equipment. The small-arms protective inserts are generally made of a ceramic.
The Interceptor Body Armor (IBA) has significantly improved Soldier combat survivability, but in what ways does it change rifleman lethality? A July 2005 study quantified the effects of Soldier equipment on lethality through multi-factor logistic regression using data from range experiments with the 1st Brigade, 1st Infantry Division (Mechanized), at Fort Riley, Kansas. The designed experiment of this study estimated the probability of a qualified US rifleman hitting a human target. It used the rifleman's equipment, posture, Military Occupational Specialty (MOS), and experience along with the target's distance, time exposure and silhouette presentation as input factors.
The resulting family of mathematical models provides a Probability of Hit prediction tailored to a shooter-target scenario. The study showed that for targets closer than 150 meters, Soldiers shot better while wearing body armor than they did without. Body armor had a negative effect for targets farther than 200 meters, and this could significantly impact the employment of the Squad Designated Marksman. The study also showed that the kneeling posture was an effective technique and recommended standardized training on this method of firing.
The Outer Tactical Vest (OTV) is a modular soft armor system; its protection can be tailored to a particular mission threat by adding or removing sub-components. The OTV provides fragmentation and 8mm pellet protection. It provides the wearer with improved fragmentation protection plus 6mm and 8mm pellet protection. A removable collar, Deltoid protector, throat protector, and/or groin protector may be affixed to the vest to increase its area of protection and casualty reduction potential. The exterior of the vest is covered with MOLLE-compatible webbing hangars that accommodate load carriage using a variety of standard pouches and pockets. The vest is also designed to be compatible with the FLC, ALICE, MOLLE and ILBE load carriage systems. The IBA OTV is available in two sizes, M/L and XL/XXL, with the same sizing system used for the SAPI plates.
Replica Small Arms Protective Insert (SAPI) plates provide additional protection for vital organs. Pockets integrated into the front and rear of the vest securely hold one or two plates. When SAPI plates are not worn, the front SAPI pocket retracts into the shell for reduced overlap and passive cooling. The rear pocket is fitted with a hole, which permits it to be used for carrying an on-the-move hydration system bladder within the vest. The OTV shell and ballistics are separate sub-components, permitting replacement for repair or upgrade without obsolescing the entire system.
The Armor Protection Enhancement System guards the neck, arms, and groin. The Deltoid Extension protects the sides of the ribcage and shoulders. However, the extension comes with a price for the Soldier. It can limit movement and block air from circulating under the body armor -- decreasing the Soldier's ability to cool off in a hot environment. Everything is a balance. We want all Soldiers to come back without any injuries. At the same time, we want them to be combat effective. Nothing can be made to be indestructible.
The front of the standard Condor (OE Tech) Interceptor vest is covered with eight horizontal rows of MOLLE webbing, with a Velcro strip on the left side (when worn) to place name tape and rank (if you add more to securely hold the rank insignia in place, as I did). There are also two diagonal straps (buttoned together) up towards the neck guard, which I use to hold a D-Ring on the right-hand side, when worn.
The neck guard is attached from under the top front. The Opening to the vest itself (as well as a panel for a SAPI plate) is provided on the front of the vest. The Deltoid Protectors attach further up towards the shoulders on both sides, slightly above the drag strap.
There are also two connection loops on the shoulders to accommodate for the DAPS. These allow for button-connecting straps to attach the aforementioned DAPS.
The back of the Condor (OE Tech) Outer Tactical Vest is covered with six horizontal rows of MOLLE webbing. Above those webbing strips is a place to insert the back SAPI Plate. It has Velcro on it, so you could attach blood type information, name tapes, unit tapes, rank insignia, etc. It also has a slit in the middle (Like ones used on a PASGT helmet cover to allow for attaching vegetation to camouflage your helmet) which you can use for running a hydration tube through or something of that sort.
Directly above the panel with Velcro is a drag strap. This is used when you need to drag a wounded soldier out of the line of fire, or such. There are also adjustment cords (cinch up) for girth on both sides, geared more towards the back, which can be adjusted to make it tighter or to give more slack, depending on your needs.
The Deltoid and Axillary Protectors (DAPS) component of the IBA provides for additional protection from fragmentary and projectiles to the upper arm and underarm areas (It does not come with Axillary protectors, as you'll have to purchase these on your own). These features allow Commanders to tailor Soldier protection to meet mission threat conditions.
The DAPS consists of two ambidextrous modular components, the Deltoid (upper arm) Protector and the Axillary (under arm) Protector. The Deltoid Protector attaches at the shoulder of the OTV and is secured around the wearer's arm with a strap. The Axillary Protector is worn under the OTV and is attached to the underside of the shoulder portion of the OTV and to the interior adjustment strap on the lower side of the OTV. The DAPS provide the same level of protection as the OTV. They are issued in sets of two each.
The Condor (OE Tech) DAPS have three rows of MOLLE webbing horizontally across the Deltoid Protectors, along with a Velcro attaching point directly above the first row of MOLLE webbing. The Velcro spacing is measured: five inches by two inches.
The standard IBA from Condor (OE Tech) comes equipped with a groin protector. The groin protector is capable of stopping 6mm and 8mm plastic Airsoft pellets from close or long range. It attaches to the Interceptor on the underside of the front, using two attachment points.
Also shown below the groin protector is the neck protector with shoulder protectors. The Neck protector is capable of defeating 6mm and 8mm Airsoft pellets from close or long range, and attaches to the IBA by using the three Velcro loops.
Rating: [5 of 5 Stars!]