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Old 01-31-2011, 05:26 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Alpha434's redesigned Vents Armor for JT Modding

This is a long overdue review for a set of re-imagined and modernized Vents Predators armor that Alpha434 sent me to test out.

These "ears" modernize the shape of the original Vents armor, with an updated cut style. The materials and design are consistent with the originals, so the change is subtle yet greatly improves the look. Improvements are also made in simplicity, reducing the number of parts and making the mask easier to install, disassemble and clean.

IMG_4936.JPG

armor1.JPG



On my first JTed "Flents" mask, I kept as much of the original armor as I could at first, while Alpha's minimizes materials while maintaining protection. Notice that the 4+ piece Predator armor is reduced to just two components. This not only simplifies and lightens the mask, but it leaves more room around your face when the mask is worn. Alpha's armor also allows for disassembly of the mask without having to pull the strap through the ears. On JTs, this usually meant you had to pull the strap out of the frame to remove the armor.

oldstyle.jpg

newopen.JPG




Coming from a Flex-7 as my previous mask, I eventually felt that the look of the mask could be improved by cutting down some of the ear foam along the jawline. Now, keep in mind that my Predators were stolen from my car, so I'll have to make do with a comparison of Alpha's Predator armor versus my cut down Vents Rage armor.


IMG_4945.JPG

IMG_4936.JPG

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The original mask had a big chunk of foam hanging down below the jawline. I personally find it gave marginal safety improvement, but then again I don't have a giant jaw so that will probably be a personal preference issue.

oldside.jpg

You can see here how the mask flexed outward and down.

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Alpha's armor protects as well as the original design along the ear and jaw, because of the fold it creates, which gives some strength against impact. The jawline is cut upwards, giving the mask a more aggressive and modern appearance. A great feature he added was to include a protective arm that tucks underneath the JT Frame to close off a gap that is left open in most Flents conversions:

armor1.JPG

The new ears also use plastic anchors for the ears, like the later Rage masks, to fold over and retain the strap. These streamline the silhouette around the head, and the plastic anchors are an improvement in durability compared to the original foam arrow tabs.

armor2.JPG

I've been using these ears for a good chunk of time now, and I've put them through their paces, even some BCPPL action:
IMG_0127.jpg

Overall, I'd highly recommend Alpha's improved Vents armor to anyone considering doing a Flents conversion. Durability has been great, except for ripping the foam arrow tab off of the arm that covers the gap beneath the JT frame. Always check to make sure all your tabs are released before removing the frame!

The improved cut can't really be praised enough - you can try to cut your own, but you sacrifice protection, and they really don't look like a 'Factory' mask once you start slicing and dicing. If you want to improve the looks of your Flents conversion, this is the way to go. The difference is pretty plain to see:
IMG_4923.JPG
Attached Images
File Type: jpg originalvents.jpg (74.4 KB, 190 views)
File Type: jpg IMG_4927.JPG (51.4 KB, 190 views)
File Type: jpg armorcomparison.JPG (51.4 KB, 190 views)
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Last edited by russc; 01-31-2011 at 05:38 AM.
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Old 01-31-2011, 01:42 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Great thread! Thanks!

Now all that's left is: how can I get one of those?
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Old 01-31-2011, 02:28 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Great Review Russ... I may be contacting Alpha in the near future to pick up these replacements for mine...

Thank You Russ and Outstanding Job on the review

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Old 01-31-2011, 04:25 PM   #4 (permalink)
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good review!
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Old 01-31-2011, 05:02 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Awersome Review.
Inquiring minds want to know where we can get them.
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Old 01-31-2011, 05:14 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Awersome Review.
Inquiring minds want to know where we can get them.
Best to PM alpha434 and he also had a thread about them as well : My Vents update project.

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Old 01-31-2011, 10:10 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Dude! I was worried that maybe you weren't using the hell out of them. I'm glad to hear that the reason you hadn't mentioned them is BECAUSE you're using the hell out of them.

A note... The arm the covers the gap when using a Predator face guard folds down and plugs into one of the foremost holes to cover the side gap when using a Rage face guard.

Interchangeability was the toughest part of the design process.


For anyone interested... The predator Flents with my ears offer as low of a frontal profile as the i4s... And even less target area... The soft ears generate plenty of bounces, so often only a direct hit to the face will give your opponent a clear elimination.

Classic looks. The best modern performance you can buy.

The credit goes to RussC, though. I wouldn't have been interested if I hadn't seen his project first. Gogged Gurl also helped a ton when I was sourcing components during the design phase. Where did she go to?

Thanks again, Russ!

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Old 01-30-2012, 06:47 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Just wanted to add my 2 yen to this review. I just tested my pair of Re-Vents from alpha434 and I was very happy with the results! In addition to what russc is using, I also had alpha add the breath deflector in my Vents Rage bottoms. The bottom line is, the deflector works! One tiny problem is that the inside parts are very fragile. It looks like one part tore as I was adjusting my mask. Thankfully it did not affect the mask in anyway aside from looks.
I removed my normal JT fan and played in semi-humid weather and my JT lenses didn't fog. Had a 20+ minute game where I was running about wheezing like the old man I am but no problems. Thanks alpha, great product!
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Old 01-30-2012, 07:56 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by 808Jackal View Post
Just wanted to add my 2 yen to this review. I just tested my pair of Re-Vents from alpha434 and I was very happy with the results! In addition to what russc is using, I also had alpha add the breath deflector in my Vents Rage bottoms. The bottom line is, the deflector works! One tiny problem is that the inside parts are very fragile. It looks like one part tore as I was adjusting my mask. Thankfully it did not affect the mask in anyway aside from looks.
I removed my normal JT fan and played in semi-humid weather and my JT lenses didn't fog. Had a 20+ minute game where I was running about wheezing like the old man I am but no problems. Thanks alpha, great product!
Oh, yeah... That breath deflector is actually supposed to be glued in by the factory. I kinda leave it up to the end user whether they want to glue it in place, and I don't stock (or use the) the glue myself.

Shoe glue would probably be ideal, and I can supply detailed pictures of what/where to glue if anyone needs it.

Let me know what needs replaced and I'll include it with your next order.
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Old 01-30-2012, 08:37 PM   #10 (permalink)
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It works fine without the glue and the tear is one of the small lines that connect the center part. It works fine so I have no problems. Because the ears make the mask nice and tight you just have to be careful when pulling the mask down. I spent a lot of time adjusting it to my face since my strap is not a 2 piece like the old Vents one is. Thanks! I'mma order another one in green I think LOL
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