Today, we’ll discuss a little something that will interest my tactical knife users more.
I have discussed how to use a knife for self-defense here before – but does it always work? For example, say your opponent/ attacker was wearing Kevlar?
Knives can penetrate Kevlar and other body armor, depending on the kind of knife, quality of the Kevlar, and the force behind the stab. This is why protective gear is optimally never advertised as bullet or stab ‘proof,’ but ‘resistant.’
However, this does not mean that you should not wear these protective clothing when you can. After all, they present an extra layer of security that the human body alone would not manage.
Table of Contents
How Does the Kevlar Jacket Work?
I’m not going to go all technical on you here.
The Kevlar material has a very high tensile strength on its own. To make it even stronger, producers of this jacket weave it into the tactical fabric that you see around today.
Thus, on impact, the threads of the Kevlar material wrap around the foreign body to repel the force, preventing penetration.
Of course, the wearer still feels the impact of the attack as well as the instantaneous shock from stopping the weapon dead in its tracks. That is another reason why you should be careful when wearing these forms of protection as the force alone is damaging.
Why won’t Kevlar Stop Knife Stabs?
There are a lot of different reasons why a Kevlar jacket won’t stop knife stabs.
The jacket might stop the knife a little, or not at all, depending on the following factors:
The wrong level of protection
Not all Kevlar and stab-proof jackets are made the same.
Some Kevlar jackets are specialized for minimal impact and as such, won’t take heavy fire quite well. Thus, make sure you’re wearing the right level of protection if you’ll be using your jacket as a stab-resistant vest also.
Condition of the jacket
Is the Kevlar old, damaged, or not in top condition anymore? In any one of those cases, you cannot expect that the jacket will do well when faced with considerable resistance.
If you are serious about personal safety and improved security, especially in the security/ military/ tactical field, ensure that your protective gear is in good condition.
Pointier nature of the knives
This is not a major reason, so don’t focus too much here.
That said, let’s get to it.
Knives are pointier than bullets and as such, they can get around the workings of a Kevlar jacket better.
Don’t forget the force
Bullets are supposed to have more force than knives. When a bigger person/ better user is wielding the knife, though, they could deliver such deadly blows that would rip through the Kevlar and inflict damage to the wearer.
Now, the force alone won’t make the Kevlar break its support to the wearer. It would usually be in combination with other factors such as the ones listed above.
Bullets vs Knives
Let’s keep this short:
Bullets are designed to deliver blunt force; knives are created to make sharp entrances instead.
I’ll give you another example to make this easier.
Let’s say you held a pillow to your body and had a friend punch you through it. The pillow will break some of the impacts of that blow, but you’re likely to feel some force behind it still.
Due to the blunt nature of the punch, the force was distributed all around inside of being concentrated in one place.
Knives, more so tactical knives, are designed to inflict damage with the tip and the edge too. So, if the knife were to be pushed through the pillow, it runs right through to pierce your body.
Now, don’t go trying this at home or anywhere. Imagining it in your head is enough for this demonstration.
That said, you do see how Kevlar is different in applications when it comes to bullets and knives, yes?
Should You Use Kevlar As Stab-Resistant?
Kevlar is an excellent option when you know what you are doing.
By that, I mean you have enough knife defense skills that you can prevent stabs and only suffer slashes. In that case, your Kevlar will do beautifully well against slashing motions.
Likewise, make sure you use the more knife-focused Kevlar (the 779 Kevlar) if this is the specific situation that you prefer it against.
Otherwise, it is advisable to go for armor plates. They are designed to withstand both stabbing and bullet shots. That is one of the reasons why they are deployed in military applications too as they can take heavier military fire.