Posted 13 August 2012 - 06:55 AM
At the end of the day, anything stiffer than a regular shirt should serve the purpose. I wore a denim shirt with the sleeves cut off this weekend b/c I knew I would be sweating like crazy in the humidity and didn't want to have to wash one of my vests again. No problems; didn't even notice any difference between it and using one of my vests. Wouldn't for a major, but local it's better than washing and ironing.
Another consideration I haven't seen here is what gun you are shooting. With bottom feeders, the pockets don't matter during a stage. I still use the khaki 511 vest I bought when I started in IDPA, for reasons already mentioned in this thread. Although I lost the velcro panels long ago. Getting a little ragged around the collar, but otherwise good to go.
For revolver, you often have the potential to need to do a RWR. The 511 doesn't have a good pocket for that. When shooting revolver, I use an Eotac, which has big, open pockets as an option, or one of the custom vests that I have accumulated over the years. Think about this before buying a new vest.
If I was looking for a vest, I would take a serious look at the Armadillos. As said, they are very nice.