Shot Stop LLC and Defender Depot - Keeping it Classy
I wrote an article about ShotStop some time ago exploring their various deceptions. Since then they have clearly responded to the publication of that article, as multiple updates to their ballistic test data have been posted to their site.
That said, ShotStop has seemingly continued to fudge the truth in their new test data. The most glaring example of this is with their "Duritium III+ PA" plate. There is a test document from a Stanag 2920 test wherein plates were shot to test for BFS (Back Face Signature) and V0 velocity. The PA plate is sold as a stand alone plate, not requiring any sort of backing to meet its rating. However, as noted in the test document, the plates were provided and ostensibly tested with an unspecified trauma pad.
In addition, ShotStop lists the PA plates thickness as .7 inches. However, in the Stanag test report, the thickness is recorded as 28mm which translates to 1.1 inches - what this likely means is that the measured thickness in the Stanag report was a combination of the plate itself and the unspecified trauma pad, a trauma pad that ShotStop makes no mentioned of the plate being used with in their marketing nor does ShotStop appear to even sell such a trauma pad.
Further, there is a ballistic resistance test from Chesapeake Testing wherein the plates were tested to a modified version of the NIJ .07 RF1 rifle threat level. Why is this notable? Because ShotStop claims the plate meets the standards for the NIJ .06 Level III rifle threat. There is a significant difference between the requirements of the upcoming .07 Standard and its RF1 threat rating and the Level III threat rating of the current NIJ .06 Standard.
The .06 Standard requires 6 hits of M80 Ball at muzzle velocity, with all hits counting for BFS measurements. The upcoming .07 Standard only requires 3 hits with each test threat, with only the first 2 counting for BFS. ShotStop does not have any document showing ballistic testing done to the .06 Standard with M80 Ball with the PA plate.
One last point regarding the PA plate - there is also an NIJ .07 ballistic test (again done by Chesapeake Testing) wherein the plate was shot with the 5.56 M193 projectile at the muzzle velocity required of the .07 Standard. The plate was shot 6 times, with only the first 2 hits being recorded for BFS in line with the .07 Standard. However, shot two states a recorded BFS of 34.7mm. In the authors opinion this is an unusually high BFS reading for a second shot M193 hit on a Level III plate, a plate that is supposed to adequately protect from the M80 Ball projectile which at a muzzle velocity of 2800 FPS carries over 1200 foot-pounds more energy than an M193 projectile at a muzzle velocity of 3260 FPS.
But what I really wanted to talk about today is the behavior of one of ShotStop's "dealers", Defender Depot. Before we begin I'd like to note that the address for Defender Depot leads to Fairview, Ohio - a town located a convenient ~38 minute drive away from ShotStop's headquarters in Stow, Ohio. Defender Depot's carried armor products are composed solely of ShotStop's lineup. Make of this what you will.
An account on Reddit going by the screen name of DefenderDepotLLC was created on November 13th, 2019. This account is ostensibly the official Reddit account of Defender Depot. DefenderDepotLLC posted two comments on a Reddit thread, one wherein they called out Saber Solutions official Reddit account, SaberSolutionsLLC. The content of that post is shown in the below screen shot -
Highlighted in red for your convenience is the comment I'd like to directly address here. This is behavior unbecoming of a company that is supposed to act with tact, honesty, and integrity in their interactions with end users who intend to rely on their products to save their lives while on the job.
In the interest of full disclosure I know the owner of Saber Solutions. That said, I'm also in a position to speak to his positive record as a dealer of armor for three of the top body armor manufacturers in the United States - Hesco, TenCate, and LTC. I've never known him to misrepresent himself, his company, or the products they carry and I know of no one who has had a negative experience in dealing with him. His interest is in providing honesty and quality service to buyers and I believe the reputation that Saber Solutions has earned speaks to that.
As an aside, Saber Solutions is in no way associated with or responsible for this article - all content written within solely represents the opinions of TGB.
With that said this is an embarrassing way for a dealer of life saving products to behave when interacting with other industry professionals who have nothing but a clean record under their belts. There is nothing here for Defender Depot to be proud of, unless their intent was to make themselves out to be petulant in their handling of criticism, in which case they have thoroughly succeeded.
As always - stay safe, and stay informed.
P.S. - A special note to Vall Iliev, President of Shot Stop - I'd like to offer a suggestion: consider keeping a closer eye on how your companies associated "dealers" choose to present themselves in an official capacity in the future.