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Posted: 9/28/2004 3:02:42 PM EST
[Last Edit: 9/28/2004 3:03:01 PM EST by mrPickles]
I will be getting some new body armor to replace my issue armor. If you had your pick, what brand name would you go with? I have narrowed it down to the Second Chance Monarch Summit, ABA Xtream, and the Safariland Matrix (all of these can be purchased through my fed. discount). Price point would be about the same, except for the SC (about $100 more). Any thoughts as to these brands, and why you would go with one over the other? Everyone else says to go with SC, and I would tend to agree, just trying to decide if it's worth the xtra $$$$.

Thanks for your time.
Link Posted: 9/28/2004 3:04:49 PM EST
what climate, what level of activity, what threat, how many hours a day... etc, etc
Link Posted: 9/28/2004 3:12:11 PM EST
[Last Edit: 9/28/2004 3:13:01 PM EST by mrPickles]
Sorry....

Climate: New Hampshire, indoors and outdoors. Never gets all that hot up here.

Activity: Standard. Foot and vehicle patrols. I spend more time on my feet than behind the wheel.

Threat: None I hope, but I would be happy with a level II.

Hours: 10-12 daily.
Link Posted: 9/28/2004 4:33:59 PM EST

Originally Posted By mrPickles:
I have narrowed it down to the Second Chance Monarch Summit, ABA Xtream, and the Safariland Matrix (all of these can be purchased through my fed. discount).



Man, that's a really personal decision. Everyone I talked to a couple years back would've said Second Chance, but now everyone I know is refusing to give them any business due to the fact that they knew about the problems with Zylon and intentionally concealed them while selling their Ultima(x) armor... If it's true, it's hard to trust a company that intentionally puts defective products intended to protect us on the market.

On the other hand, ignoring the Zylon problem, I think Second Chance has the best armor out there... I haven't personally tried any of the others, so my opinion is based on reputation and past performance.
Link Posted: 9/28/2004 4:50:57 PM EST
I' have the XTreme now, and I'm not a real big fan. Feels chunky, and doesn't overlap right, or cinch down well. I think it was partially a fitting problem, but.... I had a Safariland Gold before, and much prefered it.
Link Posted: 9/28/2004 5:14:15 PM EST

Originally Posted By mrPickles:
I will be getting some new body armor to replace my issue armor. If you had your pick, what brand name would you go with? I have narrowed it down to the Second Chance Monarch Summit, ABA Xtream, and the Safariland Matrix (all of these can be purchased through my fed. discount). Price point would be about the same, except for the SC (about $100 more). Any thoughts as to these brands, and why you would go with one over the other? Everyone else says to go with SC, and I would tend to agree, just trying to decide if it's worth the xtra $$$$.

Thanks for your time.




As long as you avoid the Zylon vests, most of the others will give pretty much equal protection within the threat level you choose. The biggest issue will be comfort, rather than protection. Choose whatever is most comfortable for your use.

For a LOT of information about the Zylon fiasco, and some other issues concerning reliability of the body armor (possible "burn through" or melting of Spectra & some other composite materials by hot gas from contact shots), look at Tactical Forums. Kevin "Mad Dog" McClung has been one of the voices crying in the wilderness for some time about the Zylon issue. Apparently there were a lot of threats of lawsuits by various armor manufacturers, & pressure put on a lot of agencies to muzzle their critics, but the truth has finally come out. There are a lot of product liability suits being filed against Second Chance & other manufacturers by large agencies & several states. As DaTrueDave mentioned, the allegations are that Second Chance had been warned by the manufacturer of Zylon that the material was breaking down much faster than expected, but they continued to advertise & sell the Zylon vests. The latest Gall's catalog has a lot of hype for Zylon vests as well.

Personally, I'll never buy anything from Second Chance. Any company that chooses profits over the safety of officers buying their product will never get any business from me. I have had SC, Point Blank, & PACA vests during my career. I will be ordering a new one in the next few weeks, but it for sure won't be from Second Chance....
Link Posted: 9/28/2004 6:53:40 PM EST
US Armor level III with the one large elastic band rather than the 4 point attachment.
Link Posted: 10/10/2004 6:46:55 PM EST
I got my SC Monarch Summit about two months ago. This is my third SC vest, second Monarch. The vest is fantastic. It conforms nicely to the body and isn't bulky or uncomfortable. After the purchase, I realized that this one also fit poorly in the area of my right shoulder, heavier muscle there caused it to bunch up. Called SC and explained the problem. They said ship it back to us with directions for modification and we'll set it up for you. Got the thing back in pretty short time and now have no problem.

I can't say how the other vests fit since I've never owned or worn one. If you can locate a couple of guys about your size with the different vests, ask em to let you try them on. If you have a local police supply store, check with them. They'll be happy to let you hang them on to check the fit.

Before you buy into all the hype about SC selling us out for profit, do a little research. Toyobo concealed information about the deterioration of Zylon. When SC found it out, they voluntarily pulled the Zylon based vest. Every other company continued to build their Zylon mix vests until forced to stop by law suits. Seems to me that the other companies were the ones motivated by profit.
Link Posted: 10/10/2004 7:06:22 PM EST

Originally Posted By Copper54:
Before you buy into all the hype about SC selling us out for profit, do a little research. Toyobo concealed information about the deterioration of Zylon. When SC found it out, they voluntarily pulled the Zylon based vest. Every other company continued to build their Zylon mix vests until forced to stop by law suits. Seems to me that the other companies were the ones motivated by profit.



Negative. The allegations are that Second Chance was specifically told by Toyobo and Second Chance continued to manufacture and market their Zylon vests. Whether or not the allegations are true, I don't know. But things aren't looking good for Second Chance. The lawsuit will bring the truth to light...
Link Posted: 10/11/2004 3:24:39 PM EST
[Last Edit: 10/11/2004 3:25:25 PM EST by metalrocks]
I know you mentioned some other companies, but you may want to check out this company as well.

Give them a call and talk with them about their equipment. I think they also have a discount if you turn in your old vest.

www.rbrtactical.com/

or

www.rbrtactical.com/shop/category.aspx?categoryid=4&openid=4

Good luck and stay safe.
Link Posted: 10/11/2004 4:10:24 PM EST
I have the Xtreme from ABA and I love the vest but hate the way it is cinched down. The velco straps are pieces of shit. This vest is only a couple of months old and on one of the carriers the velco is already starting to fold back....
Link Posted: 10/11/2004 5:08:52 PM EST
[Last Edit: 10/11/2004 5:09:15 PM EST by Peacekeeper3073]
Second Chance
Link Posted: 10/11/2004 8:54:11 PM EST

Originally Posted By Copper54:
Before you buy into all the hype about SC selling us out for profit, do a little research. Toyobo concealed information about the deterioration of Zylon. When SC found it out, they voluntarily pulled the Zylon based vest. Every other company continued to build their Zylon mix vests until forced to stop by law suits. Seems to me that the other companies were the ones motivated by profit.



Untrue, sorry, but simply untrue. Beleive what you want, but it is public knowledge that they were made aware of the Zylon issues YEARS before it came to light that officer were getting injured due to their product. The blame goes all the way up the ladder, there were a few people in the company who tried to set thing right, but they got slapped down.

Wait and see in the lawsuit if you have doubts. Either that or go back and look at the emails that have been made public that were sent to SC a few years ago....
Link Posted: 10/12/2004 2:25:38 PM EST
Stay away from the Matrix shit from safariland. This is the shitty vest ever designed. It's about half as thick as my old second chance real lightweight with this super duper suspension system with all kinds of adjustment. I got all giddy when I got it from property. TO describe the fit after a few hours would be to say you got slapped in the chest with 3 lbs of mashed potatoes. The thing doesn't stay where you want,it floats around,folds up, crumbles up but only after an hour or so of wearing it. All the stick figures(skinny folks) seem to like it, if you are shaped like a papertowel roll maybe it would be good.

I wear an out of date second chance now instead. I've never worn anything less than IIIa. I figure on the off chance I'm going to get shot I would rather not chance by what handgun I'm going to get hit with. But then again I have a vest behind my head in my car and rifle plates in the trunk so I'm a bit overboard by some standards.
Link Posted: 10/12/2004 6:48:52 PM EST

Originally Posted By Stickman:

Originally Posted By Copper54:
Before you buy into all the hype about SC selling us out for profit, do a little research. Toyobo concealed information about the deterioration of Zylon. When SC found it out, they voluntarily pulled the Zylon based vest. Every other company continued to build their Zylon mix vests until forced to stop by law suits. Seems to me that the other companies were the ones motivated by profit.



Untrue, sorry, but simply untrue. Beleive what you want, but it is public knowledge that they were made aware of the Zylon issues YEARS before it came to light that officer were getting injured due to their product. The blame goes all the way up the ladder, there were a few people in the company who tried to set thing right, but they got slapped down.

Wait and see in the lawsuit if you have doubts. Either that or go back and look at the emails that have been made public that were sent to SC a few years ago....



What Stickman said....You really should check out Tactical Forums for a lot more discussion about how this issue FINALLY became public. There is a lot of information from people who have no monetary stake in how this issue is resolved. From what I've been able to find out, Second Chance lied through their teeth about the Zylon issue, and then got caught in their lies. There are a lot of lawsuits pending, & I'm sure more will come out about who was told what and when. Anyone remember Firestone stalling about the tires on SUVs, or Ford stonewalling about the Pinto burning like a dumpster? There are VERY few companies willing to own up to their mistakes & do the right thing until they are forced by lawsuits or publicity to do so. And from what I have seen, Second Chance is among the worst of the offenders in this case. YMMV, but I choose not to financially support their backstabbing.....

Link Posted: 10/19/2004 10:41:49 AM EST
As deputy gadget said.. STAY AWAY FROM MATRIX. It absoultely sucks. Then again the guy that fitted it for me from Streicher's is not the brightest, but it still should not move around as mouch as it does, and it is not at all comfortable. I had a ZeroG gold IIIa, and it was ok. Other than that, no experience with the others.
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