Monday, March 21, 2016

Armored vehicles for Preppers in a "Come as you are conflict"

In a future chaotic world more reminiscent of modern Brazil than "On the Beach" or "Mad Max", it is clear that every day people will require a means to travel from A to B without becoming sniper or IED bait.  They will also need a way to overpower hasty road blocks set by extra judicial killing squads.  These are all features of Iraq, of Brazil to a somewhat lesser degree and other garden hot spots of the globe.

Right about NOW, you are probably wondering how an average person can provide credible armored support for themselves, without spending the whole kitty.  An OT-64 SKOT, a Polish/Czech armored personnel carrier can be sourced for about $15,000 USD in good, refurbished shape.  Shipping is a few grand more, depending upon where you live.  Parts for such Former Warsaw Pact vehicles are actually obtainable in America from logistics companies that handle that sort of thing.  The drive train components are common Tatra truck bits, I hear Tatra Canada does engine overhauls.  This is the price of a gently used  Camry, all in.  That is an IMMENSE amount of capability for the dollar.

Another path to take to armored vehicle self sufficiency can be found in the used armored car/cash in transit vehicles.  These  will actually "blend" a lot better than former Warsaw Pact vehicles, but may attract other attentions from criminal elements looking for the presumed loot inside.  Trust me, they won't consider your life worth a plug nickel... that is why you want one, yes?

Many will debate the finer points of wheeled versus tracked armored vehicles.  For the Prepper, for the guy who wants to be able to avoid death, the only real answer is wheeled vehicles.  Why?  (1) Upfront and ongoing Cost.  (2) Maintenance.  Try pulling track maintenance by yourself.  I hear it is not fun with a whole crew.  Maintenance, maintenance, maintenance! Here is a T-72 getting its track replaced:


To get an idea of armored vehicles, I suggest you tour the Aberdeen Proving Ground Museum at some point.  There is more armor on display there than in any other place I have seen. Some of it still bears scars from the WW2 era.  Think about all the complex pins, linkages and just how crazy it would be to swap out major parts, like transmissions or engines.  Civilian armored vehicles are really quite similar to the chassis they are built upon, chances are if you can work on one, you pretty much know how to work on the other.


What kind of ballistic protection do they offer?  Well, you probably need to do a mission analysis for yourself to determine what the need is, rather than the want.  Capability costs.  The right decisions can allow you to maximize the benefit for your budget expenditure, so you can put resources to maximum use.  Keep in mind, these things WILL use up parts a LOT more intensely than a regular version of the same chassis (for armored cars).  They will handle a lot differently, and use quite a bit of fuel.

In conclusion, when things start to get really crazy is too late to consider buying your own personal war wagon or supplies to uparmor an existing vehicle. Such items will allow you and yours to avoid the fates and getting seized at unannounced, extra-judicial roadblocks.  Those NEVER end well for the unawares and unprepared.  For those interested in a look into the Brazilian kidnapping industry (which prompted me to write this), please read THIS article at .  This is what civilian ownership of such is able to prevent.

Even if contemplating an uparmored vehicle for yourself is not in the budget, at a minimum, a prepper can take basic steps to make their vehicle more SHTF durable, as mentioned previously in this post by simple and lower cost modifications such as buying "Run-Flat" tires


Military grade bullet resistant fibreglass panels can be installed using simple carpentry tools.

P.S. - Check out .  They have annual events at the Cal Ripken Stadium in Maryland.  if you are interested in this topic, these guys are an interesting bunch.  And yes, last I checked, a member there had an OT-64!


lineman said...

What about something like this think speed agility and ease of changing out parts and tires would be a better option for SHTF..Also you can always weld up AR500 plate to it to get protection...JMHO

Partyzantski said...

THAT is an INTERESTING find! The vehicle is ideal for tight spaces and the deep woods. It offers a lot of capability. It has a all up weight of about 2,000 pounds per the spec sheet, so I would have to do some engineering analysis on what the chassis could support in additional weight.

Places that get hammered with added mass are connection points for suspensions, which tend to deform over time... as well as the bushings within them. Brakes, shocks and the like would all need a rethink. It may just be easier to go with former Warsaw Pact gear. Your choice, though, would blend one heckuva lot better, far less alarming to the neighbors!

I drove uparmored Suburbans for a bit in Baghdad. The handling is way different, the interior space much smaller. Armor is complicated, in terms of engineering the right protection at the right weight. The angle of incidence is a critical factor that gives greater effective thickness than is physically present, and may offer you some insights.

Again, this is all dependent on mission analysis that you do. I have no expectations of survival for anything if one encounters a Grozny scenario. See for an intro to what that entails. I studied the Chechens in some detail for my job, but now do other things.

My personal favorite in thios lineup is the OT-64. I used to scoff at them, but they have a certain balance of capability and size/mass that works for me. I doubt my HOA would be cool with me parking one here!

lineman said...

Just the low profile of it and the off road capabilities of the UTV seem like a better choice for where I live anyway...I guess it all depends on terrain, what your using it for,availability of parts and fuel,and what kinds of threats you would be facing...A problem I see with the vehicle you recommend besides the fact of it not being able to be a daily driver is the availability of parts and the ability to practice enough to be good in it...

toadboy65 said...

Fast, easily hidden, 2 wheel drive for offroad, great mileage.