I have narrowed my choices down to the CIRAS and the SOHPC for my armor/plate carrier. I do have some concerns about each that I was hoping to have answered by you.

On the CIRAS vest, it says a Large will only accept 10X12 plates. That didn't make sense to me since large SAPI plates are usually 10.25" X 13". Does everyone have to go with the XL CIRAS vest in order to accomodate SAPI plates? I am 6' and 175 pounds. That usually is a Large in most vests. But I would rather not have to use a smaller 10X12 plate. Is there a way to fit larger plates in the Large vest?

On the SOHPC, I have seen a couple of plate carriers where the internal elestic straps are pulling out of the carrier in the rear of the vest. I saw it in a video last night on youtube in which someone was reviewing their carrier and pointed that out as well. For those of you with this carrier, have you seen this issue as well? If so, did MSA fix it under warranty for you? MSA seems to only have an 18 month warranty on the carrier, so that is my concern is that the elastic will fail and I will have to keep fixing it on my own dime.

I know a lot of people have run both carriers for a long time. Can you help me decide on which to go with?

Thanks!
That which does not kill you will only make you stronger!
Original Post
Additionally, the SOHPC internal cummerbund is not hard sewn into the vest; it is attached via PALS loops. I doubt you'll have any problem with it failing, but if you do it is a user removable and replaceable item.

Also, you might want to consider a Medium instead of a Large. I'm 6'1", 180lbs and I wear a Medium in both the SOHPC and BALCS soft armor, due to it being a bit longer cut.

And finally, +1 on Gunslingers comments. You are looking at apples and oranges between those two vests. You may want to re-examine your needs and figure out which one best serves your intended purpose.
_________________________
"In the computation of probabilities in human conduct, self-interest is a high motivation factor. Children and barbarians have clear ideas of justice due to them, but no idea at all of justice due from them."
Paraclete also makes their RBAV which is a RAV style vest that accepts BALCS soft armor and hard plates. It also contains pockets for side plates and comes in '05 (front zipper) or '07 (front velcro flap) configuration. The RBAV is probably a better comparison to the CIRAS than the SOHPC.

Chris Bowers

Bowers Tactical

http://www.BowersTactical.com

Dealer of Magpul, Daniel Defense, Surefire, Blue Force Gear, Safariland, Geissele, Aero Precision and much more

I have a large CIRAS that I have forced a set of USGI XL E-SAPI plates into.

The plate pockets were stretched so tightly that they no longer followed the contour of the plates, but it was all good when cinched down.

I can't vouch for the long-term effect of this on the integrity of the vest, but Eagle products have NEVER EVER failed me.

Re: the distinction between a plate carrier (plates backed by soft panels) vs. full coverage soft armor with supplemental protection offered by plates....

The military went to plate carriers for personnel who were facing a threat that full coverage soft armor offered minimal protection from--compounded with said threat exploiting the lack of agility a full-coverage armor system imposed.

If you're not constrained by these operational conditions (or political/doctrinal ones), consider Officer Friendly's LE-oriented approach, which is probably wiser for urban/suburban/Zombie apocalypse: a good low profile full-coverage soft armor system worn under a plate carrier that you can don when the threat warrants it. This MIGHT be a wiser approach, and even though you're going to more free-standing pieces it WILL free up more funds for ammo, training and other kit.

In the end, a PC vs. full coverage armor system by itself doesn't offer a spectactular difference in weight--especially if you aren't able to take advantage of incremental weight savings as hard plate technology advances every six months or so.

___________________________________________________________________________
"The integration of your weapons, equipment and mindset is not something to be taken lightly." --Pat_Rogers 24APR2010

quote:
Originally posted by Covert Channels:
On the CIRAS vest, it says a Large will only accept 10X12 plates. That didn't make sense to me since large SAPI plates are usually 10.25" X 13". Does everyone have to go with the XL CIRAS vest in order to accomodate SAPI plates?


The CIRAS sizes follow the size plates you are using. If you wear Medium plates, Medium CIRAS, etc. As has been mentioned, you can usually shoehorn the XL plates into the Large CIRAS.

SF

Dude... u already posted up a thread on this... why not continue that one instead of starting another on the exact same topic?

Just sayin.

As far as your question- Armor wise these are two differant animals. Having not used the CIRAS I can only comment on the SOHPC as I own one. Consider what you want price point wise, the Paracelete obviously holds this in advantage and comes with side Lvl III soft armor already in. Add plate backers and front/back plates; done. Its simple, as in KISS simple, no need to think about quick release's and cables. Its a plate carrier. Its biggest weakness that I see is generally the inability to fine tune cumberbund length due to attachment being via MOLLE and not synchable buckles like the Mayflower, Eagle PC, etc... But really its not a big deal for me. Internal cumberbund is alright but not spectacular, so like all Plate carriers, you wear it nice and snug to prevent any undersired wiggle while on the move.

Also, I dont know about your body type but I wear a medium in the IBA and IOTV but my Paraclete was a bit small, thus I had to send it in for a Large (thanks grey group!). I have a big chest and didnt want it to look like a tactical sports bra.

Other then that its made it through one class and me using it as a wieght vest for when I run/crossfit/grass drills/hill sprints. Its comfy to, although I recommend buying the shoulderpad's as with all PC's it isnt comfy with long term wear on the shoulder's.

Cheers, Matt

"It is easy to go down into Hell; night and day, the gates of dark Death stand wide; but to climb back again, to retrace one's steps to the upper air - there's the rub, the task."    Publius Vergilius Maro, The Aeneid

quote:
Originally posted by USMC_Anglico:
quote:
Originally posted by Covert Channels:
On the CIRAS vest, it says a Large will only accept 10X12 plates. That didn't make sense to me since large SAPI plates are usually 10.25" X 13". Does everyone have to go with the XL CIRAS vest in order to accomodate SAPI plates?


The CIRAS sizes follow the size plates you are using. If you wear Medium plates, Medium CIRAS, etc. As has been mentioned, you can usually shoehorn the XL plates into the Large CIRAS.


I thank the size is the armor size not the plate size.

Per this thread.
Thank you all for your excellent replies and information. I appreciate you helping me with my decision.

I wish Eagle would post on their website that the Medium and Large vests would take up to XL SAPI plates. On their website they only say a Large vest will top out at 10X12" plates which aren't even correct military sizes. I don't want to have to buy 10X12 plates if I can get by with 10.25X13 SAPIs that will fit most plate carriers. Thanks for the link that helped clear this up.

With all the information on this page, I have decided that my requirements don't necessarily require me to have a CIRAS vest with BALCS armor. I could use a concealable Level 3A soft armor vest and use a plate carrier over top to give me the best of both worlds. When rifle threats are present, I can quickly put on the plate carrier, and also have full coverage from the concealable vest for pistol threats and as a plate backing.

I am going to look more closely at the Paraclete SOHPC and the Tactical Tailor RAC and make a decision.

Thanks.
That which does not kill you will only make you stronger!
From the post I linked to above.

David Pennington

I am going to F'ing scream here. This is the CIRAS sizing for the 27th time. I am the F'ing PM for my company's SPEAR BALCS contract production and I deal, constantly, with the upper ends of Eagle (CIRAS manufacturer) and Ceradyne (BALCS plate manufacturer/soft armor distributor). This is the sizing, trust me.


Small CIRAS goes with Small SPEAR BALCS soft armor. The Small CIRAS fits Small, Medium, and Large SAPI/BALCS plates. It does not fit X Large SAPI/BALCS plates.

Medium CIRAS goes with Medium SPEAR BALCS soft armor. The Medium CIRAS fits S, M, L, and XL SAPI/BALCS plates.

Large CIRAS goes with Large SPEAR BALCS soft armor. The Large CIRAS fits S, M, L, and XL SAPI/BALCS plates.

X Large CIRAS goes with X Large SPEAR BALCS soft armor. The X Large CIRAS fits S, M, L, and XL SAPI/BALCS plates.

The CIRAS is sized the same as any SPEAR BALCS pattern vest. If you wore a Medium RAV, your Medium RAV armor is designed to fit in the Medium CIRAS. You size the vest based on the soft armor coverage needed to meet your protection needs and comfort level.

Guys, this is not that hard and it's been discussed 27 times. Again, the CIRAS is not sized based on plate sizing. It is sized based on soft armor sizing.
Stranger,

What you posted is what I believed as well. Yesterday I contacted Eagle about replacing my size medium maritime ciras with a small maritime ciras. I was told that I would have to change out my plates as well as my current 10x12 plates would not fit in the small. Strange, huh?
I don't really feel like getting into a pissing contest here, and I'm sure David Pennington is knowledgeable in this. But I didn't know, so I called Eagle and that is what they told me. You can argue either side of this boring story. But I think the manufacturer knows their product.

So...

David says armor

Eagle says plates.
quote:
Originally posted by Ashy Larry:
I don't really feel like getting into a pissing contest here, and I'm sure David Pennington is knowledgeable in this. But I didn't know, so I called Eagle and that is what they told me. You can argue either side of this boring story. But I think the manufacturer knows their product.

So...

David says armor

Eagle says plates.


The CIRAS pamphlet that serves as the "manual" from Eagle says the same thing about plate sizing that he does. Hell, take my word for it. A Large CIRAS, or a Medium, will take a Large or XL SAPI. The CIRAS pocket is big enough, and it has a velcro system so you can adjust the internal height of the plate. It will fit and the plate can be correctly placed with regards to your innards.
CC, if your looking at wearing a concealable vest, you might consider running a plain plate carrier, such as an Eagle, or Paraclete plate carrier, or looking at what Mayflower has to offer. I have the SOHPC and really like it, but I would not wear it over a concealable vest, as the armor in the cumberbund would be redundant and add more weight. I chose the SOHPC because I am willing to trade off less protection from fragmentation for less weight.

"Never underestimate the predictibility of stupidity" RIP SSG Brad King. KIA April 2, 2007.

Thank you Ground Pounder. I appreciate it.

I found a local store that sells the Tactical Tailor releasable plate carriers, and they look perfect for what I need. They will hold the large SAPI plates front and rear, and 6X8 side plates as well. The plate carrier does't hold armor (other than plate backers if you want them) so it will be a perfect combo to run with a concealed soft armor vest. That way I can take off the plate carrier when needed and still have pistol protection.

Thanks again for the great info!
That which does not kill you will only make you stronger!
I wouldnt pay that much for a releasable system. Most plate carriers can be easily put on, taken off. If having the ability to use side plates is a driving factor in your decision, then look accordingly.

"Never underestimate the predictibility of stupidity" RIP SSG Brad King. KIA April 2, 2007.

If an economical, non releaseable plate carrier is what you decide you need take a looK at DBT's FAPC. I just got their gen 2 FAPC and it is solid. If you are mil/gov/LEO they offer a sizable discount. Total for my FAPC setup (FAPC,cummerbun, plate backers) ended up being about $260. Not too shabby.

http://www.diamondbacktactical...Plate-Carriers,6.htm

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

"We must be able to apply the appropriate degree of force and discrimination...demonstrating a complete business like attention to detail and if necessary, we must be able to kill with ruthless efficiency" - MSG Paul Howe

quote:
Originally posted by renli3d:
Stranger,

What you posted is what I believed as well. Yesterday I contacted Eagle about replacing my size medium maritime ciras with a small maritime ciras. I was told that I would have to change out my plates as well as my current 10x12 plates would not fit in the small. Strange, huh?


I own a SMALL MAR-CIRAS and it has MEDIUM ESAPI plates in the pockets... perfect fit. I would imagine that 10x12 plates would fit in there as well, if they are "operator cut" or whatever it is that has the upper corners chopped off. You will need small BALCS soft armor for the small MAR-CIRAS.

Good luck!
-Randy

-- Nobody knows what I do, until I don't do it.

quote:
Originally posted by RICKDAWGGG:
If an economical, non releaseable plate carrier is what you decide you need take a looK at DBT's FAPC. I just got their gen 2 FAPC and it is solid. If you are mil/gov/LEO they offer a sizable discount. Total for my FAPC setup (FAPC,cummerbun, plate backers) ended up being about $260. Not too shabby.

http://www.diamondbacktactical...Plate-Carriers,6.htm


I back this up as well.. Got mine without backers in MC for $360 on mil discount..Good vest overall...Got one here in MED MC if you want to take it since I'm not using it anymore..

Add Reply

Likes (0)
Post
Copyright Lightfighter Tactical Forum 2002-2019
×
×
×
×
×