Getting the right size of plate carrier is something people have struggled with. A lot of us maintain the assumption that if your t-shirt size is Large then you should wear a large Plate carrier.
In truth, your molle armor plate carrier should be the same size as your armor plates. If your plates are medium-sized then get medium-sized plate carriers. Don’t buy into the belief that wearing something larger means you get more coverage, therefore more protection. It doesn’t work that way.
There are, however, some companies that make armor and label them as 10” by 12” when they really aren’t 10” by 12”. They tend to mess up the dimensions usually by a factor of plus or minus 1” which ends up messing up the fit. Here’s a bit of information that should help you choose the right size of plate carrier.
How to Fit Your Plate Carrier to Your Body Size
Another problem people face is taking the right measurements. Some simply don’t understand what it is they need to measure. This is a common problem among buyers and normally brings about confusion, prompting them to make the wrong choice. Then, of course, we can’t forget the people who knowingly buy a bigger size of plate carrier hoping that it will give them more coverage.
Here’s what happens when you decide to get a size larger than your armor plate:
Problem 1: When your plate carrier is larger, you can no longer get into the right shooting stance. This, therefore, limits your ability to effectively handle your weapon. If your PC is there for the good looks, this might not be a problem but if you aren’t too fond of missing tangos, this might be a bit of a setback.
Problem 2: Free body movement is going to be restricted because you now have extra weight from unnecessary plating and material. Once again, if your PC is there for the looks- perhaps you just want to strike a pose, that’s quite alright. But if you intend to use your plate carrier in combat, it will definitely have a significant impact over the long haul.
The last thing you want is to laboriously carry around dead weight. Your armor may be good for defense but if you can barely attack on the offensive, the armor isn’t as effective as it should be. You should strive to find that sweet spot of a middle ground.
With this coverage, you can sit comfortably, punch your weapon out properly, and move about freely with the least amount of resistance. This is not to discourage you to go with a larger plate carrier but always be aware of the defense vs offense balance.
It’s All About Precision
This may feel like a laborious and completely unnecessary task but in the end, it’s totally worth it because there’s nothing quite as frustrating as ordering a plate carrier only for it to arrive after a long wait and it’s not the correct size.
Once you have your body measurements figured out, you can make cardboard cutouts of various plate sizes. Try them on and see which one works for your body type.