"A vest with armor plates inserted on the chest and back. While quite effective at deflecting gunshots and stabbing attacks against the chest, it does nothing to protect the limbs."
Flak vests are a somewhat common method of protecting one's body from lethal gunfire and sharp attacks (i.e. stabs, cuts, bites), as well as offering minor protection against explosions and the ever-present threat of clubs, maces, and muffalo. Flak vests can be purchased from traders, manufactured, or stripped from Outlanders and Pirates. Flak vests are typically encountered after the third or fourth raid, depending on difficulty and wealth (this assumes Rough and Crashlanded scenario, so somewhat 'standard' wealth).
Flak vests can be manufactured at a machining table, once Complex clothing and machining has been researched. A flak vest requires 120 steel, 2 components, and 334 seconds of work (20,000 ticks) to be created, assuming baseline global work speed and no enhancements or hindrances to consciousness, sight, or manipulation.
Conclusion and Comparison
Flak vests offer slightly inferior protection, and vastly inferior coverage compared to marine armor, but is also significantly cheaper to produce and purchase. They also only occupy the middle layer, meaning that overgarments such as dusters may be worn over the top, whereas marine armor occupies both the middle and shell layers so they cannot be worn with the armor.
The following table lists how much protection an armor vest provides at each quality level.
Prior to Beta 19, it used to be called the Armor vest. It was much more expensive, and did not protect against heat.