Why All Steel Plates Are Not Equal; OR Why It Is Important To Verify Before You Buy!

Posted: September 1, 2014 in Opinion

I can still remember 10 years or so ago, when steel plates were relatively rare. You had DBT, and one or two other options. Steels used were the expensive MARS 500 or similar.

Fast forward to now. Ebay is awash with sellers making their own versions of steel rifle plates, mostly using AR500 steel, a select few using MIL-Spec HHS (A46100), and some using SUB-standard (pun intended) steels. The latter, known as High Yield, is literally used in the building of submarine hulls.

HY-80, or High Yield 80, is a great steel to withstand high pressure at great depth. What it lacks is the hardness found in A46100 and AR500. This little detail can lead to bad things happening when it is shot by high velocity rifle rounds.

A gentleman on the “Toob” (Nellz442) did a shoot test with several common rounds, and while the plate easily handled pistol, and shrugged off 7.62X39, 5.45 punched it.

5.45 is an easier threat to stop than M855. Yes, it is still a hyper velocity, small caliber threat, which can give AR500 plates pause. But unlike AR500, HY-80 does not have the hardness to resist indentation, which allows it to be holed by a round that it was claimed to stop:

The second test (since removed from Youtube) using the backside of the plate showed M855, .30-06 SOFT POINT and 7.62X54 sailing right through.

This is an excellent opportunity for a reality check- it is fine to want inexpensive armor, but if that armor does not perform as intended/advertised, you have actually just spent far more than you would have if you purchase known effective steel in the first place. AR500 steel is still a decent baseline, and A46100 is still the gold standard for economical, and highly effective rifle armor.

Leave the SUB-standard steel for the submarines.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s