Innovative Lego-like armor is replacing sandbags

Blast and bullet resistant, giant Lego-like blocks are making the old-fashioned sandbag a thing of the past.

For hundreds of years, sandbags have been the standard for rapidly building fortifications— but now there’s a smarter and superior solution. It’s called McCurdy’s Armor. You can use them to build walls, guard posts and more, or even build a shed in your backyard to withstand a zombie apocalypse.

Made by Dynamic Defense Materials, the product is named after Ryan McCurdy. McCurdy was a Marine who was killed by a sniper while trying to save another Marine.

Joe Dimon, general manager of Dynamic Defense Materials, explained that he served with McCurdy in Fallujah. “He is someone that I feel would still be alive today if we had this technology when we were serving in Iraq,” he said.

McCurdy’s Armor can withstand RPGs, Molotov Cocktails, small arms fire and even serious explosive blasts including 32 pounds of TNT – that’s about the equivalent of two 155 artillery shells.

There are transparent gun ports to provide soldiers with situational awareness while completely protected. When soldiers need to return fire, the ports can quickly open into firing position.

How does it work?

They can be set up on any terrain. Three people working together can set up an entire guard post without any hand tools or heavy equipment in less than ten minutes. The system can be dismantled and redeployed just as rapidly.

Also designed for easy storage and transport, McCurdy's Armor can be packed away in a trailer to relocate and quickly be set up elsewhere.

Where would they be used?

These giant armored blocks have been quietly replacing sandbags as the far smarter and effective solution to rapid protection in war zones. Hundreds of these posts have been delivered to the U.S. Army in Afghanistan. Other users include the U.S. Marine Corps, U.S. Air Force, Afghan Border Security and Mexican Federal Police.

Beyond the war zone, they could also be used to protect places that are attractive targets to terrorists like government buildings, airports, train stations, and hotels, to name a few.

Modern twist on gladiator shields


Also made by Dynamic Defense Materials is an individual shield that allows protection on the go. It is designed to meet challenges like active shooters and checkpoints.  It can also be useful on roofs, and blend into structures like U.S. embassies.

The Mobile Ballistic Shields provide full protection against small arms, high caliber rifles and multiple hits. The mobility means they can be handy for law enforcement during riots, for example.

It also has robust wheels for rugged terrain. And like Legos, the shields can connect to others to build a moving wall of protection.