Pinnacle's New Armor


Not really...but got you to look, right?

My colleague Bryant Jordan ran across this photo and passed it along to Defense Tech just to show how very far we've come with ballistic protection.

According to a caption from the archival section at Corbis, these garcons are French soldiers of the Army Ordnance Department showing off the test articles of their WW I-era body armor.

I can't even see what this is made of, but it sure looks like cold rolled steel and leather. I'm digging the groin protector and the jaunty dude on the right with a 45 hole right in his junk.

Also, what gives on the 1984-esque eye shades built into the helmet?

I went on The Google for this one and came up empty. But I did run across a FAS entry that references the US Army's experimentation with body armor. It was called the Brewster Body Shield (sure beats "Interceptor") and looked more like a bad 1950s B movie robot costume than a combat ready ballistic outfit.


But it could stop bullets...

The Brewster Body Shield, was made of chrome nickel steel, weighed 40 pounds, and consisted of a breastplate and a headpiece. This armor would withstand Lewis machinegun bullets at 2,700 f.p.s. but was unduly clumsy and heavy.
I'll say. Makes Dragon Skin look positively featherweight by comparison (I'm just pulling your leg Murray).

It's interesting to see how body armor technology has evolved, and no doubt we still have a long way to go. But pictures like this offer a glimpse of what was state of the are nearly 100 years ago.

-- Christian

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