As we see in The Mandalorian, the Empire had quite the reserve of Beskar:


A random imperial bureaucrat (as it seems at the moment) has enough of it for the Mandalorian to create a whole armour. It would've been easy for Vader to get enough to make his armour of it. Why did Vader instead use Durasteel?

From the Star Wars Fandom wiki entry on Vader's armour:

Vader's pectoral armor appeared to be one piece that protected his entire upper torso. The durasteel material was gray in hue with several black vertical stripes. Around the neck of the full-shoulder pauldron was a black chain, and connected to the upper seam of the armor w1as Vader's black, flowing, nearly floor-length armorweave cape.

Especially since parts of it were made of Beskar, according to DVK-on-Ahch-To's answer to this question about whether Vader's armor is lightsaber-proof.

The only detailed information about lightsaber proof parts we have are Vader's gloves. They were (According to "Darth Vader's suit" on Databank) indeed made with micronized Mandalorian Iron that was proof against lightsabers and (as seen in Han shooting him on Bespin) blasters.

  • 19
    Because this substance didn't exist until a writer pulled it out of his bottom in 2006 whereas the metal for Vader's armour was revealed in the 1980s
    – Valorum
    Commented Nov 22, 2019 at 20:06
  • 1
    @Valorum And Star Wars is an example of consistency and they'd never change something in retrospec? And from scifi.stackexchange.com/questions/54924/…: The only detailed information about lightsaber proof parts we have are Vader's gloves. They were (According to "Darth Vader's suit" on Databank) indeed made with micronized Mandalorian Iron that was proof against lightsabers and (as seen in Han shooting him on Bespin) blasters.
    – Shade
    Commented Nov 22, 2019 at 20:14
  • presumably asking from Legends? Looks like Vader's armour being made of "durasteel" isn't current canon. According to the non-canon page you're citing re: durasteel - even Boba Fett's armour at one point was durasteel.
    – NKCampbell
    Commented Nov 22, 2019 at 21:44
  • @NKCampbell If canon is possible, yes. If only a legends explanation is available, I'll accept that.
    – Shade
    Commented Nov 23, 2019 at 11:23
  • Two things to consider,: 1) when did the Empire destroy Mandalore? I assume it was after the Clone Wars. i.e. after when Vader's suit was created. 2) Moff Gideon seems to be no mere beaucrat, and the events of The Mandalorian take place after the fall of the Empire, the Beskar reserves may been more accessible at that point.
    – Skooba
    Commented May 15, 2023 at 19:48

4 Answers 4


Aside from the fact that he probably didn't get to choose the armor when it was first put on him, there are several possible reasons:

  1. Vader most likely didn't think he needed any extra protection. One of the biggest faults of the Sith are that they are overconfident in their own abilities. With his newly found Dark Side powers, Vader felt invincible, armor or not, which previously had led to him attempting to approach Obi-wan from the lower ground and getting the last of his limbs removed. Despite this defeat, Vader was so confident that he would not lose another fight, he simply chose not to take the extra precaution.

  2. It's possible that wearing a full set of Beskar would simply be too bulky. Even Mandalorians only wear helmets, chest pieces, and shoulder coverings. From what we see of Anakin's fighting style before donning the suit, he much prefers agility and dexterity over being able to resist a few lightsaber strikes. Remember, the only thing preferable to armor protecting you from a lightsaber is not getting hit by a lightsaber in the first place. More likely than not, Vader preferred to rely on his own fighting skills as a way of defense, rather than go the more "tanky" route.

  3. Additionally, it's quite possible that Vader's armor is already efficient enough. On Cloud City, we not only see Vader block Han's laser blasts with his gloves (which some sources say are actually made of Beskar), but we also see that his armor prevents Luke from further damaging his arm when Vader fails to deflect a lightsaber strike. Durasteel may not be Beskar, but it does seem to have some effect on lightsaber blades and blasters.

Lastly, let me pose a counter-question: If Beskar is so great, why would every Jedi not be dying to get their hands on it? Wouldn't it provide a distinct advantage to the wearer in any lightsaber fight?

Whether for one of the above three reasons or a different one, there definitely seems to be some logical reason that Jedi and Sith alike prefer their cloth robes to battle armor of any sort.

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    Jedi very rarely fought opponents with lightsabers in the prior 1000 years before the rise of the Sith. Armour that deflects lightsaber strikes would be largely pointless
    – Valorum
    Commented Nov 22, 2019 at 20:55
  • 1
    The Jedi would not have worn it for the same reason as Vader in point #2. They would see it as a disadvantage to the agility and dexterity needed to fight. Jedi also tend to use more finesse, and bulky Beskar armor would hinder that. I don't think the counter-question is valid because you already made a point as to why Vader wouldn't be using it that applies to Jedi. Commented Nov 24, 2019 at 15:06

Palpatine had Vader’s suit created while Vader was fighting for his life, so it’s safe to say that Vader had no say in the metals or materials that were being used in the creation of his armor. Another thing to note is clearly the emperor felt that Vader’s anger hate & rage were more than enough to make him a formidable force to be reckoned with so he wasn’t thinking Beskar would be necessary in the creation of Vader’s new suit

  • 3
    One other thing to note is that in canon the emperor had built Vader an improved & updated suit but never released it to Vader fearing it could possibly make Vader too powerful eventually sealing his own fate which of course would have been his own demise & since the emperor was obsessed with immortality this was an unacceptable risk to take... Commented Dec 20, 2019 at 14:52

I feel mostly certain it was actually stated in The Mandalorian that only the Mandalorian smiths knew how to truly utilize beskar, like was said. That's not something I would fancifully imagine up in my head, I'm rewatching it so if I do find it again I'll tell you where to look, but that does seem likely. In fact all of this seems likely, from the overconfidence to the bulky armor hindering agility, to rules of honor, Vader's gloves having "micronized" beskar doesn't mean much, you can plate some of it onto whatever threading materials you want and weave that, but it doesn't require any forging, which is unique to Mandalorian smiths alone.

  • Hi, welcome to SF&F. This would be a much better answer if you could actually quote from the show where it says that.
    – DavidW
    Commented Apr 3, 2020 at 2:06

Because only Mandalorians know the secret technique of how to turn Beskar into armour, and their smiths will die before they tell anyone. To the Mandalorians Beskar is basically sacred. They view it as theirs and theirs alone. How to work it is their most well kept secret, their ace in the hole against everyone else. Lots of other people have tried, but if you don't know the exact method of how to forge the Beskar it will turn into a brittle material that is heavy and useless, which is exactly how the Mandalorians like it.

To the rest of the galaxy the metal is worthless, but in the hands of Mandalorian smiths, and only Mandalorian smiths, it becomes the greatest armour in the galaxy.

  • 2
    This seems like headcanon. Can you offer any evidence to back up these bold assertions?
    – Valorum
    Commented Feb 26, 2020 at 13:16
  • In addition, Vaders gloves had Beskar in them: The gauntlets were also made of a micronized Mandalorian iron weave to protect Vader against glancing lightsaber blows during the patient's physical therapy sparring sessions, as well as deflecting a direct hit from a blaster bolt. from starwars.fandom.com/wiki/Darth_Vader%27s_armor
    – Shade
    Commented Feb 26, 2020 at 13:49

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