Is This The Most Comfortable & Secure Concealed Carry Method?

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Is This The Most Comfortable & Secure Concealed Carry Method?

Image source: Dara Holsters

Renowned firearms trainer and the founder of Gunsite Academy, the late Col. Jeff Cooper, is credited with having said, “If you don’t have a gun within arm’s reach, you’re unarmed.” It’s a sound observation, considering that most criminal attacks transpire in five seconds or less.

As a concealed carry instructor, it’s no longer a surprise to hear more than half of the licensed carriers I encounter say they never, or rarely, carry a firearm on their person. Most have groomed a sense of satisfaction based on their handgun being a permanent resident of a car door pocket or nightstand. Unless a threat to their lives occurs when they are in the car or near the bedroom, however, they likely will be defenseless if that critical moment comes to pass.

Why do most folks who’ve gone to the trouble of receiving training and purchasing a handgun not carry? Most haven’t found a method of carry that is comfortable and secure for their typical day.

My own carry habits and methods have evolved over the 12-plus years since I made the decision not to outsource my personal safety. Purses, pockets, ankle rigs, “four o’clock” inside-waistbands, and various belly bands all had their turn. Now, and for the past few years, my everyday carry (EDC) gun has occupied either the right or left quadrant of the front of my waistband — commonly called appendix inside waistband (AIWB) position. Of course, it’s not the only way to carry; everyone needs to find what works for them. For purposes of this article, a working assumption is that any gun, carried in any manner, is inside a sheath of some sort that prevents penetration of the trigger guard.

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Here’s why AIWB works for me:

1. Accessibility

There is no fuss associated with drawing the gun. Simply lift the shirt hem with the support hand and draw. It’s simple and fast, and works regardless of whether I’m standing or strapped inside a car seatbelt.

2. Security

Is This The Most Comfortable & Secure Concealed Carry Method?

Image source: Monderno

AIWB and front pocket carry are the only positions about which I’ve not encountered a news story in which a concealed carrier was relieved of their gun by a common thief or mugger. Of course, there’s probably a story about that somewhere, but compared to other methods, AIWB makes the would-be thief’s job nearly impossible. It also makes the gun inaccessible to children, unlike off-body methods. Compared to otherwise equally secure methods, AIWB prevails due to factor No. 1 in this article — ready access.

3. Comfort

With a compact firearm, AIWB carry allows me to move from attending a meeting, to going for a run, to doing outdoor chores, and even driving long distances with the gun on my person. No need to take the gun off every time I get in the car. No more digestive issues from a belly band that feels like a boa constrictor when adjusted so the gun won’t pull it down. No more blistering from the seam of an ankle holster — you get the picture. It just works. There is no concealment system that offers zero discomfort, but AIWB has been the least bothersome for me.

4. Discreet carry

While I’ve had to abandon tucked-in dress shirts worn without a sweater or jacket, as well as giving up proper dresses in favor of shirt/skirt ensembles for dress-up occasions, AIWB offers one of the least obtrusive methods of carry. I thought the purse was discreet, too, until a co-worker asked why I carried it with me even for minor tasks.

5. Least disruption to my mornings

Sticking a holstered gun into my waistband every morning is fast and easy — which makes it easier to be a habit, and thus easier to be prepared. Systems that entail fiddling with straps, clips and the like are not likely to become a part of an already full routine.

Every method of carry requires compromise, and AIWB is no exception. The holster I use must be set aside when using the restroom — an act that requires one to be extra-present, mentally speaking, in public facilities. This isn’t true of all AIWB holsters. The slightly looser shirts this method requires hide the waistline that is a benefit of exercise. As a female, the biggest compromise has been the kind of pants or shorts I wear. An adjustable drawstring or substantial belt loops are a must.

There are some holsters, like the magnetic Quick Click & Carry (QCC) made by JM4 Tactical of Abilene, Texas, that even overcome some of these minor drawbacks. Holstered AIWB carry isn’t for everyone, but it’s been a panacea for me after having tried numerous other methods. What’s your favorite method?

Do you use AIWB carry? Share your thoughts in the section below:

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The Versatile Survival Pistol That Lets You Shoot ANY Caliber

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The Versatile Survival Pistol That Lets You Shoot ANY Caliber

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A never-ending discussion among firearm owners is about the “best” survival gun. Heck, I’ve chimed in on that a couple of times already here, and am about to offer another choice, because in many ways it is the ultimate survival firearm, capable of shooting almost everything, from .22 to .45-70 and can be configured as a rifle or handgun at your pleasure.

I’m talking about the Thompson Contender series pistols. First introduced in 1967, this venerable single shot pistol was redesigned in 1998 as the G2 Contender and has the ability to change barrels.

In the 50 years the Contender has been in production, barrels from tiny rimfire calibers to .45-70 have been made in it, along with specialized rounds adapted for the Contender platform like the 7-30 Waters (a necked down .30-30). Arguably one of the most popular single-shot hunting handguns out there, with a careful barrel selection, the Contender can allow you to carry an entire armory in your survival kit.

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While there are literally hundreds of barrel combinations for the Contender series in dozens of calibers and lengths, with careful shopping, a few will stand out for the devoted off-gridder or survivalist.  The .22 LR seems like an obvious choice, but this is one I wouldn’t go out of my way to get. If you already have an accurate .22 handgun that you can harvest game with, lugging around a Contender barrel won’t give you any edge, although it is hard to argue against the potential increased accuracy the Contender offers. Put this one low on your priority list, along with many of the highly effective but essentially unique to the Contender rounds like the aforementioned 7-30 Waters, or any of the other specialty rounds popular for the Contender. Remember: The name of the game here is survival gun, which means common calibers, unless you are well-equipped already to provide the ammo for an oddball round.

In no particular order, I would choose either .357 or .44 magnum due to the commercial success of those rounds. I’d follow it up with a .30-30 barrel, maybe a .223 and a .45-70 for taking big game. If you can find one, and it is legal in your state (sorry, California) a .45 Colt/.410 barrel with a special choke can be had (although sometimes at great expense), expanding your cartridge choices.

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Now, obviously, we are looking at getting a few barrels for very common, commercially successful calibers and for obvious reasons; if things ever go truly south, you will have an easier time finding such common rounds over hard-to-find rounds. However, there is a place for less common rounds for the well-prepared homesteader. One of my favorite revolver rounds is the .41 magnum, and this is by no means a common round to find. Guess what the first barrel I bought for my Contender was? In fact, I sold the .44 mag barrel that came with mine to get the .41. Chances are if you are invested in an oddball or uncommon caliber, you’ve got dies, brass, bullets, maybe molds to keep it going. And if you are a reloader and have a proper stash of powder and primers, then you are golden. If you plan to include an uncommon caliber in your Contender arsenal, then just make sure you have the ability to keep that round going for a few hundred rounds. Otherwise, your barrel is little more than scrap steel.

As a hunting pistol, you won’t be shooting thousands or even hundreds of rounds out of your Contender a year. This isn’t a combat weapon, and in a grid failure scenario, even a few dozen rounds can keep you in meat for a long time. That does not mean you should neglect a proper ammo supply, though, of at least a couple hundred rounds for each barrel you have.

With the right combination of barrels, the Contender can give you the luxury of multiple firearms in a single package. Barrels are inexpensive, and several can be easily carried at once, along with a small supply of ammo for each. As a compact and hard-hitting hunting handgun, the Contender can keep you in meat year-round and can increase the versatility of your bug-out kit. With a great many common calibers available to choose from, you can readily make the right barrel set for your needs and inventory, and be assured of being able to hunt, even in socially and economic uncertain times.

Have your ever shot or do you own the Contender? Share your thoughts about it in the section below:  

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If I Could Own Only 5 Guns …

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If I Could Own Only 5 Guns …

Walther PPQ M2. Image source: YouTube

If you could own only five guns, what would they be?

I recently asked myself this question and the task proved surprisingly difficult, because there are a lot of different guns that I like — and it’s not easy making sacrifices.

In the end, though, I was able to narrow my selection by first determining the five basic types of guns that I would want to own before choosing the specific models for each of those types.

So what are the five types? They are:

  1. 9mm semi-automatic pistol
  2. .45 ACP semi-automatic pistol
  3. .22 semi-automatic rifle
  4. 12-gauge pump action shotgun
  5. .308 semi-automatic rifle

I’ll explain my reasons for choosing these categories below, as well as the specific make and model of gun I chose per category.

9MM Pistol (Walther PPQ M2)

I believe the pistol is the most important firearm you can own, simply because you can conceal it on your person and travel with it. I also believe that if you could own only one pistol, it should be a 9mm because it’s the most abundant and the cheapest to shoot.

While some may expect me to say the Glock 19 or 17 is my pick for a 9mm pistol, the truth is I would opt for the Walther PPQ M2. The ergonomics on the PPQ are incredible and it melts into my hand seamlessly. The trigger is also a wonder in its own right and is much more light and crisp than any other striker-fired pistol I’ve used. Reliability, of course, is excellent.

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The fairly compact size of the PPQ means I easily can hide it on my person for concealed carry, while the 15+1 capacity (or 17+1 with the extended mag) offers plenty of firepower in a self-defensive situation. For these reasons, I find it to be equally as versatile as it is pleasurable to fire.

Granted, I am fully aware of the PPQ’s shortcomings as a survivalist sidearm. Because it has a short track record, spare parts and accessories are not nearly as available as, say a Glock or a Smith & Wesson M&P.

Nonetheless, the PPQ is one of my favorite handguns and one I have found great use and enjoyment out of over the years.  It would be my personal pick for a 9mm pistol if I could only have one.

.45 ACP Pistol – Colt Mark IV Series 70

If I could own five guns, two of them would need to be handguns (at least for me). I was very close to making my second handgun a .357 Magnum revolver (likely a Ruger GP100), as it would be very versatile in that I could shoot both .357s and .38s through it.

Ultimately, though, I decided if anything were to happen to my PPQ as my concealed carry gun, I would want another semi-automatic pistol that I could use as an alternative. I also wanted this pistol to be in .45, so that I would have a slightly greater variety of calibers instead of just 9mm.

Many people will disagree with my choice here, but I pick the 1911 (and specifically the Colt Mark IV Series 70) simply because it’s one of my favorite guns to shoot. There is no other handgun that balances as well for me as the 1911, and it’s the pistol I find myself enjoying the most each time I visit the shooting range.

The Series 70 I own, in particular, has proven to be very reliable, with only one malfunction during the break-in period (as most 1911s require) and none since then. Even though magazine capacity is limited at 7-8 rounds, the trade-off is that the 1911 is slim and easily concealable on my person.

Beyond that, the 1911 is endlessly customizable with no shortage of spare accessories and parts on the market, something that contrasts heavily with the PPQ, where aftermarket options are more limited.

.22 Rifle – Ruger 10/22

Image source: Ruger

Image source: Ruger

No gun collection is complete without a .22 of some kind, so I knew immediately that one of my top 5 guns to own would have to be a .22 semi-automatic rifle. A .22 is perfect for small game hunting, pest control, plinking, and for introducing new people to shooting. The ammunition is also so small that I can carry literally hundreds of rounds on my person without really noticing the weight.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, my pick for a .22 rifle is the Ruger 10/22. The very first gun that I ever owned was a Ruger 10/22, so it’s a weapon with which I have much experience. I have found the 10/22 to be a robust, accurate and dependable weapon. I could easily use it for tactical purposes if needed.

Another reason that makes the 10/22 my choice for a .22 rifle is how spare parts and accessories are literally everywhere. During a disaster scenario, this would be an advantage where I would have a greater chance of finding spare magazines or other parts in the event that anything broke over other .22 rifles.

12 Gauge Shotgun – Mossberg 500

I’ve heard many arguments supporting the idea that the pump-action 12-gauge is the most critical gun to own. No one can deny that the 12-gauge shotgun is highly versatile. When loaded with buckshot it’s devastating for home defense. With birdshot you can use it for bird hunting or clay pigeon shooting. And with slugs you easily could use it for big-game hunting.

My preferred shotgun is the Mossberg 500. The controls are convenient for me (more so than the Remington 870) and the fact that this was the only pump shotgun to pass the U.S. military’s brutal Mil-Spec 3443G torture test says a lot about its quality.

The specific 500 that I would choose would be a Mariner model with a 6+1 capacity. The Mariner, coated in Mossberg’s trademark silver Marinecote, has much greater rust and corrosion-resistant capabilities than standard bluing does. I would also pick the 6+1 version so I could alternate between a 28-inch vented rib barrel for hunting and a shorter 18.5-inch barrel for home defense. This option essentially gives me two shotguns in one.

.308 Semi-Auto Rifle – Springfield M1A

Finally, I need a center fire rifle to top off my five. It makes perfect sense to choose a .308 semi-automatic in this scenario, as I can use it for both big game hunting and tactical training.

My choice here would be the Springfield M1A, over the AR-10, FAL, and G3/C308. The M1A first entered U.S. service in the 1950s and continues to be used by some marksmen in the military today. There’s good reason why: It is a very well-built, rugged, and accurate rifle that will do everything you ask it to do.

I fully understand the M1A is heavy (and long with the full-length version) and that .308 ammunition is not as cheap as 5.56x45mm NATO. However, a rifle that fires the 5.56 like the AR-15 is simply not as multi-purpose for me, as the 5.56 round is far too light for elk hunting (something I do each fall). Ideally I would own both, but since I have only one gun left to choose in my list of five, I would settle for the M1A or any .308 semi-auto rifle over a rifle that fires a lighter bullet.

What would be in your top five? Let us know in the section below:

If The Grid’s Down And You Don’t Have Ammo, What Would You Do? Read More Here.

Gov’t Pressures Doctors To Ask: ‘Do You Own A Gun?’

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Gov’t Pressures Doctors To Ask: ‘Do You Own A Gun?’

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BOSTON — Your doctor might ask if you own a gun and lecture you on firearm safety if the state attorney general and the Massachusetts Medical Society get their way.

“Gun violence is a major public health threat and physicians can play a key role in curbing the violence by educating patients about the risks of gun ownership and encouraging our colleagues to talk to their patients,” James Gessner, the president of the Massachusetts Medical Society, told reporters Monday. “We are honored to work with the Attorney General and law enforcement officials in efforts to make gun ownership safer and reduce deaths and injuries attributable to guns.”

Gessner and Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey, a Democrat, unveiled an initiative designed to have doctors ask patients about gun ownership. It is part of a partnership between Healey’s office and the Massachusetts Medical Society.

“While the vast majority of gun owners are responsible and deeply committed to gun safety, this remains a public health issue, and conversations between patients and health care providers are critically important to preventing gun-related injury and death,” Healey said.

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Gov’t Pressures Doctors To Ask: ‘Do You Own A Gun?’

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The program has the support of two groups representing the states’ police chiefs.

“Many households in our country have guns, but they can cause harm if not handled properly,” said Chief James DiGianvittorio, president of the Massachusetts Chiefs of Police Association. “We require the bearer of a license to carry a permit to take required safety course, however, many times other family members have no formal training. This program will at the very least open the door to conversations between physicians and patients on the risk factors associated with firearms-related injuries.”

Under the proposed policy, doctors would not report gun owners to cops. Instead, they would simply talk to them about gun safety.

“That’s why Boston Medical Center is so pleased to participate in the development of this training to help physicians talk to their patients about the safe handling and storage of guns. As a health care community, we are fully committed to ending gun violence in Massachusetts, starting in every home, and in every doctor’s visit,” said Kate Walsh, the president and CEO of Boston Medical Center.

The first step in the program will be to distribute pamphlets telling doctors about gun safety, a press release from Healey’s office stated.

“Most medical professionals believe that they can have an important role in preventing gun-related injury and death, and yet screening and counseling about guns remain uncommon,” Healey said.

The goal, she said, is to prevent gun-related accidents, self-harm and violence.

What is your reaction? Share your thoughts in the section below:

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An American City Banned Gun Ranges. Guess Which One?

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An American City Banned Gun Ranges. Guess Which One?

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WASHINTON — Second Amendment advocates won a major victory in Chicago last month when the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals struck down a city ordinance that restricted shooting ranges to industrial areas.

The city earlier had passed an outright ban on gun ranges, but that was struck down in 2010.

Chicago officials defended their new law by arguing that gun ranges attract gun thieves, cause airborne lead contamination and carry a risk of fire. The court disagreed.

“The city has provided no evidentiary support for these claims, nor has it established that limiting shooting ranges to manufacturing districts and distancing them from the multiple and various uses listed in the buffer-zone rule has any connection to reducing these risks,” the court ruled in its opinion.

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The court also ruled that a provision that prevented anyone under 18 from entering a shooting range was unconstitutional.

“The City’s primary defense of the age-18 limitation is to argue that minors have no Second Amendment rights at all,” the opinion in Rhonda Ezell v. City of Chicago stated. “To support this sweeping claim, the City points to some nineteenth-century state laws prohibiting firearm possession by minors and prohibiting firearm sales to minors.

“… Banning anyone under age 18 from entering a firing range prevents older adolescents and teens from accessing adult-supervised firearm instruction in the controlled setting of a range. There’s zero historical evidence that firearm training for this age group is categorically unprotected. At least the City hasn’t identified any, and we’ve found none ourselves.”

Earlier Case

The Ezell case arose after the Supreme Court struck down Chicago ordinances banning shooting ranges and criminalizing handguns in a 2010 case called McDonald v. City of Chicago. The city tried to do an end-run around that ruling with a complicated scheme of zoning regulations designed to make it unprofitable to run a shooting range.

Among other things, the regulations specified that ranges could only be in areas zoned for manufacturing and had to be a specific distance from homes, schools and places of worship. That meant ranges could only be constructed in 2.2 percent of the city, virtually making it impossible to open a new shooting range.

“This severely limits Chicagoans’ Second Amendment right to maintain proficiency in firearm use via target practice at a range,” the Seventh Circuit ruled.

The case is attracting attention because Diane Sykes, who wrote the majority opinion, was on President Trump’s short list for U.S. Supreme Court candidates, the Associated Press reported.

What is your reaction? Should cities have the freedom to ban gun ranges? Share your thoughts in the section below:

If The Grid’s Down And You Don’t Have Ammo, What Would You Do? Read More Here.

Does your gun technique need improvement?

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More and more people around countries who legalize gun ownership purchase their own guns. Some people have them for security purposes. It makes them feel safer knowing that they have a very effective way of defending themselves in case they encounter criminals or muggers.  For hunters, having a handgun became very important due to the growing popularity of handgun hunting. Whatever your reason is, if you own a gun, you should be able to use it properly. However, shooting well and using proper gun technique is not as easy as it seems. A lot of things can go wrong. Are you having problems using your handgun? Are you owning a handgun for quite some time now but still can’t get the hang of using it? Feeling like there’s something wrong on how you handle your gun but can’t point out what it is? Are you bad at using a handgun? Let me give you 8 reasons you’re bad with a handgun.

 

# 1 – You’re Holding it Wrong

For you to have fundamental shooting skills, it is very important that you know how to properly grip your gun. How you grip your gun affects your aim, your balance, your ability to pull the trigger right, and your ability to receive the recoil with less discomfort. It also prevents you from “limp wristing” which is the tendency of your gun to jam because of a loose or weak grip.

One of the mistakes in holding your gun is what we call “tea cupping”. This is putting your support hand under the handle and holding it together with your shooting hand. This type of grip is unstable and will make it hard to control recoil.

 

Another is what we call the “crossed thumbs”. This is crossing your support hand thumb over your shooting hand thumb while placed behind your gun’s handle right under the hammer. This type of grip may seriously injure your thumb when the slide moves backward which is very painful.

Other wrong ways of gripping your gun are: holding your gun too low, wrapping your dominant hand around your support hand, interweaving your fingers, pointing your support hand’s index finger, and putting your support hand’s index finger in front of the trigger guard.

 

The best way of gripping your gun is what we call the thumb-forward grip. This grip allows your palms and fingers to be in contact with the entire surface of the handle. This grip gives you a good control of the muzzle and helps you to speed up your aim.

Let me explain to you how to do this. First, place your dominant hand high on the grip and hold it firmly. The “V” between your thumb and index finger must be positioned as high as possible in the back strap. This aligns the barrel with your forearm which reduces recoil. Your three remaining fingers, on the other hand, must be wrapped around the base of the grip just below the trigger guard. Next, wrap your support hand over your dominant hand while placing your support finger’s thumb right below but slightly forward to your dominant hand’s thumb and parallel to the frame. Your four other fingers must be around the base of the grip wrapped around your dominant hand’s three fingers. When you have perfected this, you will be ready to learn how to shoot a handgun.

# 2 – You’re Doing a Wrong Stance

Having a good stance allows you to acquire a strong and stable platform, proper sight alignment, and trigger control. This will help you manage recoil and shoot accurately. There is no one stance that fits all shooters, but there are wrong stances that prevent you from shooting properly.

One usual mistake some shooters make is leaning backward which puts them off balance as recoil comes. Another is having one of their arms dropping which will make it harder for them to absorb the impact of the recoil well. The proper way to do this is to slightly lean forward towards the target with your arms extended straight and leveled with your shoulders.

I won’t be talking about all the possible shooting stances in this article, but let me teach you the two ways of proper foot placement. I will leave it up to you to make the proper adjustments which will be dependent on your own features. The first one is having your strong leg placed at the back and slightly on the side of your weak leg, your feet, slightly extending outward forming an L shape. This stance lets you have a strong foundation. The second is positioning your feet parallel to each other and extending them slightly wider than your shoulder, your knees, slightly bent and your body, squarely facing the target. This allows you to get hold of the target faster.

L-Shaped Stance

Square Foot Placement

# 3 – You’re Focusing on the Wrong Thing

When aiming at our target, there are three things that we consider: the front sight, the rear sight, and the target itself. However, it is not possible for us to focus on three things at a time. Some tend to switch their focus from the front sight, to the rear sight to the target, and back as rapidly as they can but this will still lead to focusing on either of the three in the end. Many naturally focus on the target since it is where we picture our bullet to land. The problem with this is that we leave both the front sight and the rear sight out of focus making it prone to misalignment. Some tend to focus on the rear sight because it is the closest to the eye. However, this leaves the front sight and the target out of focus.

The right thing to do?  Focus on the front sight. Everything else will follow. Why? Because the front sight will be the final basis of the projectile. Just make sure that it is properly aligned.

# 4- You’re “Putting too much Finger” on the Trigger

Many shooters commit the mistake of putting too much of their finger in the trigger that it goes across the other side. Their tendency is that they pull the gun to their strong hand’s side. The result? Their bullet lands off target.

Before pulling the trigger, you must make sure that your finger is on the right placement. To do so, contact the facet of the trigger using the part of your finger which is underneath the nail bed. Together with the right stance and grip, you will now be ready to pull the trigger.

# 5 – You are “Jerking” the Trigger

Jerking the trigger means pulling the trigger fast and sudden. The tendency is that you put too much force in pulling the trigger causing your gun to move slightly and your bullet to land off target.

Pulling your trigger just right is critical for you to shoot accurately. To do this, you must squeeze your trigger with slow, steady pressure until you hit the trigger’s break point.

One reason that you are jerking the trigger is that you are anticipating the recoil or the bang caused by your gun firing. If you find it hard to avoid it, you can practice by dry firing your gun. And always remember, when squeezing the trigger, only use force on your index finger. Never apply force with your entire hand.

 

 

# 6 – You are flinching

Like jerking, your tendency to flinch is also because you are either anticipating recoil or anticipating a loud bang from your gun. It is our body’s natural reaction to the thought that we are about to receive an impact. However, in shooting, anything that causes us to lose our target should be gotten rid of.

If you want to avoid flinching, one thing that you can do is to concentrate well on your sight alignment and trigger squeeze that you will forget to bother on anticipating the recoil. However, this requires serious concentration. The better thing to do is to acclimate yourself to recoil. To do this, practice doing rapid fire. As time goes by, you will get used to the noise and pressure caused by your gun. And don’t forget to relax before starting to shoot.

# 7 – You are using the Wrong Gun

If you are following all of the things mentioned above and are still bad with your handgun, maybe you are using a gun which is just not right for you. Like having the best IWB holsters for your guns is the answer to your problem in quick drawing when in concealed carry, sometimes, choosing the right gun that suits you is also the answer to your problem in bad shooting. Mostly, the factor that is considered here is your size and your hand size. Maybe, your hand is too small to properly reach the trigger of the gun, or maybe it is too big that it prevents you from having a good grip. Maybe your figure is too small to take up the impact of your gun. Whichever it may be, you have to choose the gun that suits you and that you can handle.

# 8 – You need more Practice

Shooting is not an ability that you just get instantly. It is not a talent. It is a skill. It is acquired through thorough practice. You don’t purchase a gun and just use it when the need appears. Or you just learn the basics, try to shoot a few times, and that’s it. Practice is important. One thing practice does for you is that it allows you to familiarize yourself with your handgun. It gives you a feeling that your body – your arms, is one with the gun; it helps you to control it easier. It also builds your confidence knowing that you have more than just the knowledge in using a handgun. You have the experience. Another is that practicing allows you to be accustomed with the noise and impact caused by using a gun which will prevent you from problems like flinching and yanking the trigger. So practice. Practice with a dry fire. Practice with a smaller caliber gun. Practice with your handgun.

Conclusion

Many people are now owning a gun for security or hunting purposes. However, not all know how to use them right. Some people know that they are not using their handgun right or that they have a problem in using them but they somehow can’t point out where the problem is coming from. That is why in this article, I pointed out my 8 reasons why you’re bad with a handgun.

 

Did you like this article? If so, please leave a comment and share it with your friends. Thank you for reading!

Joseph Gleason is the founder of Captain Hunter. We provide guides on how to hunt effectively, answer reader questions, and reviews of the latest hunting gear. We specialize in providing expert information that does exactly what it claims.

Our dedicated staff members are each seasoned professionals with a passion for hunting built upon years of in the field experience.

 

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A $250 Reliable Pistol? Yep, And It’s Perfect For Home Defense

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A $250 Reliable Pistol? Yep, And It’s Perfect For Home Defense

Image source: Smith & Wesson Forum

One of the most important firearms to have in your home defense arsenal is a reliable handgun. I would even go as far as to say that owning a handgun is more important than a shotgun, simply because you can conceal it on your person and travel with it.

That said, you’re going to be very limited in choices if you’re on a tight budget. Fortunately, you have a few solid options. In fact, if you have only $250 or so to spend right now, there is a specific pistol that could be just what you’re looking for (and no, it’s not a Hi-Point).

It’s the Taurus Millennium PT111 G2 in 9mm (or the PT140 in .40 S&W). Yes, Taurus has had a blotchy reputation in the past, but their Generation 2 line of guns released in 2013 is widely regarded as having massive improvements over previous models in nearly everything: ergonomics, build quality, reliability and accuracy.

The PT111 G2, in particular, is a versatile little handgun that could be used for a variety of purposes, including concealed carry, home defense or as a disaster scenario sidearm. The primary reason for this is its size. The PT111 G2 is a compact gun, which means it can be concealed on your person very easily; the total length of the gun is just under six and a half inches, and weight clocks in at a light 22 ounces.

Despite its small size, the PT111 G2 still packs enough firepower to defend your home and family against multiple attackers. It holds 12+1 rounds of 9mm Luger, while the PT140 holds 10+1 rounds of .40 S&W.

Be Prepared. Learn The Best Ways To Hide Your Guns.

Moving on to the features of the gun, the PT111 G2 has a nice ergonomic grip with aggressive stippling on the sides, allowing you to get a secure grip on the weapon even if your hands are wet or slippery.

Not only does the PT111 G2 feature a Glock-style blade safety on the front of the trigger, but it also features a manual thumb safety mounted in the right side of the frame. While there’s nothing wrong with having a safety on a firearm you use for home defense or concealed carry, it’s important that you always remember to flick that safety off when presenting the weapon to shoot. It would be wise to train by conducting multiple, repetitive drills of drawing the PT111 G2 and flicking the safety off when you do so in order for this to become muscle memory.

One thing that makes the PT111 G2 unique compared to other striker-fired pistols in its class is the fact it is technically a double-action, single action pistol. This means that the first shot is long while all subsequent shots will be shorter. This long initial trigger pull essentially acts as a safety in and of itself, since the pistol has a lesser chance of going off with a long trigger pull than a short one.

The PT111 G2 comes installed with three dot sights, with the rear sight being adjustable. It also features a loaded chamber indicator blade behind the ejection port that flips up when the gun is chambered. Not only does this give you a visual representation that the pistol is ready to fire, but you also can physically feel the indicator in the dark should you not be able to see it.

As with all Taurus handguns, the PT111 G2 comes installed with Taurus’ trademark security system. A pair of keys ship with the gun and when you use it to turn a lock on the right side of the slide, the entire pistol will lock up and be rendered useless until you turn it back. You can store the gun knowing that a child or a burglar won’t be able to fire the weapon.

You’re getting a lot of gun for the money with the Taurus Millennium PT111 G2. If you want a dependable pistol for home defense, concealed carry or personal protection in general but are on a budget, the PT111 G2 is a superb option and excellent value.

Have you ever shot the Taurus Millennium PT111 G2? Share your thoughts about it in the section below:

Make Your Own Ammo! Read More Here.

The SGK SHOW Gun and Prepper Shows

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The SGK SHOW Gun and Prepper Shows Host: James Walton “I Am Liberty” Audio in player below! There is a growing set of prepper shows that are running around the nation on an annual basis. Chances are there is one coming to a expo center near you. The price to get in is minimal and … Continue reading The SGK SHOW Gun and Prepper Shows

The post The SGK SHOW Gun and Prepper Shows appeared first on Prepper Broadcasting |Network.

A $4.5 Million ‘Meteorite Pistol’? A $10,000 Mammoth Tooth Gun?

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A $4.5 Million ‘Meteorite Pistol’? A $10,000 Mammoth Tooth Gun?

The Big Bang. Image source: Cabot

 

Most serious hand gunners own a 1911 and admire what is considered to be one of the best handgun platforms of all time. It is still widely used in many arenas today, and I carried one for years as a state law enforcement officer.

If you are a 1911 admirer and love the lines and precision of a well-built pistol with that can be called a work of art, then you may want to take a hard look at Cabot Guns.

Cabot is an American company based in Sarver, Pa., with roots in Indiana. While not every Cabot is a one-of-kind, many are. One example is their mirror image, right and left hand set constructed out of a meteorite. Dubbed the “Big Bang” set, this pistol debuted in 2015 and is valued at $4.5 million. Of course, most of us don’t have that kind of money, but their other guns are quite amazing, too.

Cabot 1911s have been nicknamed the Rolls Royce of handguns. Most are milled from a single block of stainless steel. The company prides itself in the use of exclusive or rare materials in grip construction. Their left-handed pistols are engineered to be entirely left-hand oriented, including brass ejection.

Be Prepared. Learn The Best Ways To Hide Your Guns.

I had the opportunity to talk with general manager Michael Hebor at a shooting event in Florida in the fall of 2016 and again at the SHOT show in Las Vegas this year. At the Florida event I was also fortunate to test fire their Vintage Classic model 1911.

A $4.5 Million ‘Meteorite Pistol’? A $10,000 Mammoth Tooth Gun?

American Joe. Image source: Terry Nelson

The Vintage Classic is just that — a classic 1911 that is finished with a vintage worn look and sports a gold bead front sight and blued finish. Grips on this pistol are Turkish Walnut with other options, including Desert Ironwood and White American Holly. The vintage Classic is priced at $3,995 — not an economy gun by any stretch but certainly in the ballpark of any high-grade, custom-built 1911.

Feeling patriotic? Take a look at the American Joe Commander. It’s a beautiful gun with American flag panel grips with a commander size 4.25-inch barrel, available in 45ACP or 9mm. A brushed stainless finish sports engraving that is a tribute to the enduring strength of America and its industry. The American Joe Commander is $4,500.

A $4.5 Million ‘Meteorite Pistol’? A $10,000 Mammoth Tooth Gun?

Monarch. Image source: Terry Nelson

Want a prehistoric touch? Then you may want to consider the Monarch. This unique 1911 comes with your choice of ancient mammoth grip scales, made from the tooth of a prehistoric wooly mammoth. Other features include a 5-inch national match barrel and a mirror finish, hand-polished slide. The Monarch is priced at $9,950.

How about a mirror image right and left-hand matched pair of 1911s? Cabot offers a selection of these one-of-a-kind sets. Take, for example, the Jones Deluxe. This set offers an exact mirror image right and left hand 1911 set with mammoth tooth grip scales. These are by special order and you can commission Cabot to build the 1911 mirror set to your liking. The set I had the pleasure of photographing at the 2017 SHOT Show was priced at $25,000.

A $4.5 Million ‘Meteorite Pistol’? A $10,000 Mammoth Tooth Gun?

Legend of Sacromonte. Image source: Terry Nelson

Moving up the detail and price scale, The Legend of Sacromonte 1911 pistol is truly one of a kind. Certified master engraver Otto Carver was commissioned by Cabot to create this work of art. Inlaid into the Sacromonte is seven feet of 24-gauge, 24-carat wire and set against a prismatic background of triangular shapes. Thousands of lines were engraved into every available surface of this 1911. Grips are ebony, which brings the gold inlay and engraving to life. Price is set at $50,000.

Cabot has many other offerings and price ranges. If you are an admirer of the 1911 and enjoy history and an artistic touch, then you can’t help but to want to hold one of these pistols. Could it be there is one with your name on it?

Would you want to own a Cabot gun? Share your thoughts in the section below: Choice of Ancient Mammoth Grip Scales

Pump Shotguns Have One BIG Advantage Over Other Shotguns For Home Defense. Read More Here.

7 Concealed Carry Guns That Are Perfect For Range Training

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7 Concealed Carry Guns That Are Perfect For Range Training

Image source: Glock

 

Many gun buyers new to concealed carry are eager to get out on the firing range. That’s great, but some subcompact guns suited for concealed carry are of limited usefulness for extensive practice. Low ammunition capacity and lack of outside-waistband holster and mag pouch choices mean the owner of the tiny gun may have to sit on the sidelines while his friends participate in a defensive pistol class or weekend match.

What’s more, a limited budget can put the purchase of two guns for these two roles out of the question. What to do? Fortunately, many companies are making guns that bridge the gap between range and everyday carry (EDC). These guns are truly jacks of many trades.

To keep the playing field somewhat level, all choices here are chambered in 9mm. It’s an affordable load that’s readily available in most locations. Due to cartridge size, capacity is generally higher, too, a factor I believe favors both range and self-protection use. Many are available in larger calibers and some are also offered in full-size versions of what’s listed here.

1. Glock 19

This compact, but not really small rendition of the Glock design, has a huge following among those who carry a gun for a living. Extraordinary reliability is its hallmark. With a generous 15-round, double-stack magazine and 4.01-inch barrel, it’s as easy to handle as a full-size range gun. It weighs in at 23.7 ounces unloaded. Glock’s Gen 4 rendition of this gun is more expensive, but the adjustable grips and improved texturing add value compared to past versions. Retail prices are around $550 for the Gen 4 model; sub-$500 for earlier editions.

2. Smith & Wesson M&P compact

Smith & Wesson’s popular design has undergone some updates over the years. Modular grip panels and an improved trigger are good upgrades to the 12+1 capacity striker-fired gun. Its low-profile rear sight on the 3.5-inch barrel serves the purpose of carry. This is one of two guns on the list available with or without a thumb-operated safety. At 21.7 ounces unloaded, it’s handy. Pricing hovers around $500.

3. Springfield Armory XD subcompact

With a three-inch barrel, this is one of the shortest guns on the list, but it’s big on capacity. The XD Subcompact 9mm ships with a 13- and 16-round magazine. Its chunky, 26-ounce frame soaks up recoil from the short barrel. Some prefer the XD line because of the passive safety device at the top of the backstrap. Priced below $450 and with a trigger that’s more forgiving of typical new-shooter mistakes, it makes an ideal starter handgun.

4. Ruger American compact

The folks at Ruger took their time and listened to customer feedback about their own and other brands before scaling down their relatively new, full-size American 9mm to a packable size. Their methodical approach directly benefits the consumer.

Be Prepared. Learn The Best Ways To Hide Your Guns.

Modular grip panels and an optional thumb safety help an owner make it their own. One of the larger guns on this list, the mag packs 17 rounds into a long grip balanced by a 3.55-inch barrel. Depending on options, it’s about 29 ounces unloaded. High-quality Novak three-dot, no-snag sights help make it a joy to shoot. Left-handed shooters could love this, as it is one of two fully ambi pistols on the list. Retail is in the mid- to high $400s.

5. Smith & Wesson SDVE

This is an older model that’s not been updated for some time. It’s earned my respect as I’ve seen two very different students have great success and enjoyment from this dependable pistol. With a 16-round mag and four-inch barrel, it’s not the smallest choice. It’s a modest 22.4 ounces. The SDVE is a very dependable choice for less money at around $390.

6. Heckler & Koch P30

Another ambidextrous choice is HK’s excellent P30. Modern polymer construction and features, combined with HK’s classic double/single action and a 3.85-inch barrel combine to make a packable and accurate shooter. HK’s luminescent sights and excellent trigger contribute to a gun that feels like an upscale choice, assuming the user is committed to the additional practice required to use a DA/SA platform effectively, especially under stress. The 15-round magazine capacity, 27- ounce pistol usually sells for upwards of $800.

7. REX Zero 1CP

This is a new release for the double/single action fans who want seriously solid construction. Made by major military arms producer Arex of Finland, the REX Zero 1CP is imported to the US by FIME Group of Las Vegas. It features a safety so it can be carried cocked and locked. The slide stop doubles as a de-cocker.  It comes in flat dark earth or black. The grip is rather thick, making the gun a good fit for medium to large hands. It has a 3.85-inch barrel and 15-round mag, and weighs in at 30.4 ounces. Though it’s not a mass-market gun like others listed here, holsters are available as it fits those made for the classic DA/SA Sig Sauer. MSRP is $650; real-world prices should come in at well under $600.

This is by no means an exhaustive list of concealable but range-friendly 9mm handguns. There are many folks who’ll also not consider them concealable for their body type. I’ve chosen them based on their track record as quality, dependable guns for myself and many friends and students.

What would you add to the list? Delete from it? Share your tips in the section below:

Pump Shotguns Have One BIG Advantage Over Other Shotguns For Home Defense. Read More Here.

Brass Shells for my Black Powder DB Shotgun.

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My youngest son bought me two boxes of brass shells for my black powder 12 gauge, so I have some hand loading to do.
Bring on the Zombies 😊 

No loader required, I can load these brass shells in just the same way as I load my muzzle-loading guns. The only difference is that I also need primers for the shells. More on this when I start reloading.
Keith.
 

Gun Safety For Preppers!

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Gun Safety For Preppers James Walton “I Am Liberty” Audio in player below! As preppers, we have a very real responsibility. We are gun owners (or better be) and how we conduct ourselves is very important. Though it may be easy to forget the Newtown Massacre was conducted using the prepper mother’s guns. This is … Continue reading Gun Safety For Preppers!

The post Gun Safety For Preppers! appeared first on Prepper Broadcasting |Network.

How Concealed Carry Policies Can Keep You and Your Employees Safe

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Unfortunately, in today’s society, there are times you may be confronted with violence at work, as illustrated by incidents such as the on-air shooting of reporter Alison Parker and photojournalist Adam Ward, the San Bernardino shooting and the Orlando nightclub shooting. An average of 551 workers a year are killed as a result of workplace-related homicides, according to the latest data available from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. In 2010, 78 percent of these homicides involved shootings. The risk of being shot at work raises the question of how concealed carry policy should be applied in the workplace. While gun control advocates may reject the idea that concealed carry has a place at work, preppers know that concealed carry may be your best defense against a disgruntled and armed employee or customer. If you’re considering implementing a concealed carry policy at your workplace, here are some guidelines for pursuing your policy safely.

Check Your State Laws

The first thing to do is check your state laws in consultation with your company’s legal team, since laws regarding concealed carry and an employer’s legal right to determine concealed carry policy vary by state. State laws seek to balance a citizen’s constitutional right to bear arms with an employer’s right to control policy on private property and their responsibility under OHSA to maintain a safe workplace environment. Some states prohibit retaliation against gun owners for bearing arms and limit an employer’s right to search employee vehicles. Others allow an employer to prohibit guns if they post certain notices.

As of June 2015, employers in Maryland were allowed to restrict concealed carry in parking lots and on premises, while those in California were not, and those in Florida were allowed to restrict concealed carry on premises but not in parking lots. Some states also allow exceptions to these rules. For instance, Utah allows employers to restrict concealed carry in parking lots and on premises, but there is an exception for federal and state workers.

Check to see what legal options are available to you under your state laws for determining your company concealed carry policy. Knowing your state’s laws can help you in formulating your policy by letting you know what options are legally excluded.

Consider Your Corporate Culture

Beyond legal considerations, your concealed carry policy towards your employees can also impact your brand reputation with your customers, points out the Society for Human Resource Management. One key issue that impacts your brand is whether the same policy you apply to your employees also applies to your customers. For instance, Starbucks has drawn criticism for asking customers not to bring guns into their stores even if they have a concealed carry permit. Similarly, businesses can draw criticism for restricting self-defense rights of employees.

Apart from concerns about criticism, there is the more fundamental issue of how your gun policy aligns with your corporate culture. How do your company’s vision, values and mission statement inform your gun policy? For instance, consider your company’s overall policy toward your employees and customers, and develop a gun policy that embodies this stance, communicating how allowing concealed carry advances the safety and well-being of your employees and customers.

Who Can Conceal Carry Guns?

The question of whether your gun policy towards your employees extends to your customers broaches the broader question of who can carry guns under your corporate policy. What about part-time employees? Independent contractors? Hired security personnel? Visitors? Are any categories of workers required to undergo any type of safety training to be allowed to carry guns at your business? Will you run any background checks on employees and contractors who may be carrying guns to ensure that you meet OHSA standards for maintaining a safe working environment? Also consider how you will handle employees who have been recently terminated or otherwise involved in workplace confrontations and may have guns on their person or in their vehicles as they are exiting the building in a bad mood.

Where Are Guns Allowed?

Another issue your policy should address is where guns are allowed. As noted, some states have different restrictions for parking lots and premises. Additionally, there may be areas of your premises that are not entirely owned by you and may be shared with adjacent businesses. Within the legal guidelines of your state laws, you should develop policies that clarify what is allowed in each of the areas of your workplace. This will enable you to respond to employees who ask where they can store their guns.

What Kind of Guns are Allowed?

Another question to consider is what kinds of guns and gun supplies are allowed, suggests workplace law firm Fisher Phillips. For instance, definitions of “assault weapons” vary from state to state, which has contributed to media and public confusion over this term. Clarifying what types of weapons fall under your gun policy can help you if you become embroiled in a public relations battle over an incident at your workplace. Likewise, you may want your policy to clarify your stance towards semi-automatic versus automatic weapons. If deer hunting is popular in your area, you might also want to lay out a policy for rifles. Similar considerations hold for ammunition and accessories for different categories of weapons that fall under your policy.

What about Other Weapons and Dangerous Objects?

Some company gun policies also address the use of other weapons and potential weapons. For instance, knives can be classified as weapons in some contexts, but if your business is a restaurant, you obviously need certain types of knives to operate. Other objects such as boxcutters are not designed as weapons but can be used as such. You may wish to consider how your gun policy addresses these.

Notifying Employees of Your Policy

After developing your policy, it’s also essential to make sure your policy is communicated to your staff and other relevant personnel. Develop training procedures to make sure that your staff is aware of your policy. Ideally, these should be part of broader training in workplace violence policy and management. If you require any firearm safety procedure training, include this in your policy. Check your state’s policy for your obligation to post signs and make sure you are in compliance with these requirements.

 

The post How Concealed Carry Policies Can Keep You and Your Employees Safe appeared first on American Preppers Network.

Survival Gear Review: Walther G22 Bullpup

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g22_bullpup

g22_bullpup_shooting_actionIn the world of low-caliber rifles, the G22 Bullpup is a great choice. The rifle is accurate, sleek, and reliable. For survival applications, such a rifle may be lacking.  No matter how cool the rifle, how can you expect a .22 LR to be a workhorse? This gun will never be powerful enough to bring down big game or seriously deter assailants. Even with 11 round mags and quick reloads, the G22 Bullpup simply does not have enough utility to be a contender as a survival rifle.

By Sam, a contributing author to SHTFBlog & Survival Cache

Outside of more pragmatic uses, the G22 is great. As a plinking rifle, the G22 is a wonderful choice. The gun is accurate, lightweight, and features rails for after-market customizations. For these reasons alone, the G22 is well worth adding to your armory. Whatever you do, don’t expect the G22 to bail you out in a survival situation.  Unfortunately, the G22 is no longer commercially available but it can still be purchased used.

Specs

Weight 95 oz (2.7 kg)
Length 28.4–29.5 in (72–75 cm)
Barrel length 20 in (51 cm)
Width 2.2 in (5.6 cm)
Height 8.7 in (22 cm)

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FIREARM: First Thing to Do With Your New Pistol and A Short Survey

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In a recent article, I read that gun sales, even after the 2016 election, were still running high. Coupled with the Christmas holidays, there is a great possibility that there are quite a few new gun owners out there.  That’s a good thing for those of us who support the Second Amendment!

But with gun ownership, no matter why a firearm was purchased, there are some thing that need to be understood and learned, like the proper cleaning of your new firearm.  Since I haven’t come across a recent article on Prepper Website, I have decided to put together an article that links to several videos that I think are good for any gun owner to view.  Two videos discuss the need to clean your firearm before you shoot it for the first time.  This is due to the cosmoline that gun manufacturers put on the firearms before leaving their factory. Most new gun owners don’t know this.  The last video is a good generic video on cleaning your pistol.  Also, for future article considerations, I have created a short survey to ask gun owners their pistol of choice for home defense and/or concealed carry.  And don’t forget to get yourself a pistol cleaning kit and some lube – both which you will find endless debates about online! 😉

Although this first video uses a rifle as their example, know that you will find the same on your new pistol…to varying degrees.

 

NeverEnuffAmmo does admit that he talks too much for this short video, but you should still watch it!

 

And here is Iraqveteran8888, with a good generic and basic cleaning video.

 

I would greatly appreciate it if you would leave me a little info below (type and caliber), for future article considerations, on the pistol you purchased for home defense or your concealed carry handgun.

 

Loading…Peace,
Todd

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The Katrina Pistol: Part 2

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glock_19_katrina_pistol_trijicon_streamlight_tlr2_surefire_sights

glock_19_katrina_pistol_trijicon_streamlight_tlr2_surefire_high_sightsPutting together a dedicated Katrina Pistol to complement my Katrina Rifle was an entertaining exercise in apocalyptical scenarios. But seriously, a deadly extension of the human hand with a semi-auto pistol and a few enhancements will ensure you’ll be packing more firepower than most foes would expect. And it is for that very reason that my Katrina Pistol will be the last surprise in a bad guy’s life when the SHTF.

By Doc Montana, a contributing author to SHTFBlog & Survival Cache

In Part 1 of the Katrina Pistol I outlined seven straightforward considerations with the Katrina Pistol. But there were also some loose ends and dead ends. As this Katrina Pistol effort unfolded, some directions were not pursued, and others took longer to resolve. Two areas where I chose not to enhance the Katrina Pistol include suppressing it with a screw-on silencer, and tinkering with the internals pistol gears including the trigger. But I’m getting ahead of myself. Let’s take a closer look where we left off in Part 1 and where we went in Part 2.

Gut Check

The gun of choice was an Glock 19 MRO. As of note here is the low Glock number. The very first Glock was the 17, and the second Glock was a full-auto (select-fire actually) version of the 17 named the 18. But unlike the Glock 18 used in the opening train scene of the James Bond film Skyfall, a real G18 eats through a 33 round magazine in under two seconds!

Continuing the Glock 9mm trend, Glock produced a compact version of the 17 and it was christened the Glock 19 because it came after the 18. So in essence, the Gen4 Glock 19 is a solid gun that has been evolving steadily since 1988, and the Glock 17 for six more years than that. To add some closure here, the Glock 26 is a subcompact double-stack 9mm and the Glock 34 is a long-slide 9mm. And the most recent Glock, the 43, is a single stack subcompact 9mm. And, of course, there are many variations of the above including threaded barrels, compensated or ported barrels, Modular Optics Ready (MRO), colored frames, Cerakoted slides, various generations of some numbers, and a new Glock 19S.

Read Also: The Katrina Pistol

Except for the select fire switch on the driver’s side of the Glock 18’s slide, all the Glocks are pretty much the same. However, there is often a tremendous urge to mess around with inner workings of your gun. Or at least that’s what the after-marketers want you to believe. While I’ve been known to “Barbie Up” a gun on occasion, I’m going to leave the dark parts of my Katrina Pistol Glock alone at the moment. But if I was forced to make a change, the trigger is a good starting point since it, like almost all other Glock triggers, drives like a pickup truck. No more, no less.

Shut Up. Or Not.

glock_19_katrina_pistol_trijicon_streamlight_tlr2_surefire_light_onSilencing the Katrina Pistol seemed like must-do for any total makeover. And I had planned on going that route when Katrina was still on the drawing board…well actually a bar napkin. That is, until I hit the wall of reality. It quickly became apparent that a suppressed 9mm Glock was neither quiet, nor small, nor light, nor simple, but with plenty of conspicuous reasons to lock up whoever is carrying it when the thin blue line is at it’s breaking point.

A suppressed Glock 19 is twice as long, near twice as heavy, and maybe only a third as quiet on a good day. While subsonic 147 grain and heavier 9mm bullets are finding their way onto local gunshop shelves with occasional regularity, it is not really the ammo I’m worried about with the Katrina Pistol, it’s the silencer. A suppressed Glock 19 has a total barrel length in the realm of an SBR or short barreled rifle. Now consider that unless the suppressor lives on the Glock through thick and thin, there are two components that must be managed in addition to mags and ammo.

And remember that lanyard? Well that’s for those times when the gun takes a hike on its own. Although suppressors are fairly durable, a not-too-hard blow to the far end of the gun might just be enough to allow a baffle strike rendering the suppressor useless. And the last thing, the very last thing you want to worry about with a Katrina Pistol is a fragile component, especially one that is longer than the gun itself and twice as expensive. But building a suppressed Katrina Pistol is only an aftermarket-threaded-barrel away should that feature be desired later. I still have the napkin.

Going Home…Again

glock_19_katrina_pistol_trijicon_streamlight_tlr2_surefire_bravo_concielment_holsterA recently resolved component of the Katrina Pistol was the holster. Finding something reasonable in looks, function, retention, and price has thus far been near-elusive. There were some off-the-shelf solutions on my radar, but the custom options seemed the only clear route. I started with a Fobus holster that fits the Glock with a laser/light as well as a pile of other pistols. The Fobus was not expensive so I am quick to take the hacksaw and utility knife to it in order to explore optics options. Instead, the Fobus ended up on the Island of Misfit Toys. Why? Because I discovered a wonderfully effective and intimately customizable Bravo Concealment Kydex holster that not only met my Katrina Pistol holster needs, but also asked me exactly that I wanted in a Katrina Pistol holster. Every choice from color, to belt width, to specific weapon light, optic, and hard sight height was offered. And then there is the military/LEO discount. I searched high and low of what really might be my very last holster, and the Bravo Concealment answered the call with zero complaining and zero issues. As much as I love new gear, I really will not be looking for another holster for my Katrina Pistol anytime soon.

Related: Put a BUG in your Bug Out

One added benefit of the Bravo Concealment Kydex holster I had not thought much about was complete coverage of the muzzle. This became apparent to me during one wet expedition. Not that I was worried about putting a ding in the crown, but instead I was concerned about packing the pipe with mud. So without knowing it, I took another page from the WWII playbook and enclosed the barrel of my pistol inside a holster. It’s not perfect coverage, but plenty good enough that any barrel-plugging debris would have to squeeze through a Kydex crack first.

Another layer of protection I employed was to add the Trijicon RMR Adapter Plate. Its literally nothing more than a thin sheet of metal that sits between the exposed battery housing of the RMR and the mountain plate that comes with the Glock MOS. Without it, you can see just a hint of the rubber gasket peeking out along the edges of the RMR above the slide. Under magnification it appears there is a complete seal, but the exposed portion of rubber O-ring is of concern. I don’t see it lasting all that long unless able to fully seat against a flat surface. So for a few more bucks and a couple more grams, I now feel more confident in the mounting interface between electronics and cold, hard, fast moving steel.

Take the Fork in the Road

glock_19_katrina_pistol_trijicon_streamlight_tlr2_box_with_manual_of_armsThe Katrina Pistol is a self-contained fighting tool that must function independent of everything else in the universe. That means it can be part of a bug out loadout, or run solo as a grab-and-go package. While I considered this duality of survival, I opted to place the Katrina Pistol in a Pelican case and surround it with some necessary kit. And then I filled in the remaining space with a few components that, if needed, are true lifesavers.

Inside the Box

In addition to the 17 round mag of the Katrina Pistol Glock 19, are three 15 round Glock mags and one 33 round Glock mag. And on one of the 15 round mags is a Glock loader which is nothing more than a plastic collar that depresses the top round in a mag allowing the next one to slide in easily.

glock_19_katrina_pistol_trijicon_streamlight_tlr2_surefire_ammo_pileFilling out the extra space in the box are a compass, a few pairs of ear plugs, the T-Reign Lanyard, an oversize Ferrocerium rod, a Bic Lighter, a Boker neck knife, four CR123 batteries (for the Streamlight TLR-2G), a pair of CR2032 batteries (for the Trijicon RMR), a couple 1/16” allen wrench for the Trijicon sight, and, perhaps most importantly, 120 rounds of loose 9mm ammo (that’s eight 15-round mag refills), and an aftermarket Glock manual of arms. Oh yes, and a few hundred dollar bills stuffed under the lid foam.

For the record, the Glock manual is for those who might need some lessons. It is a spiral bound book about pistol shooting in general and the Glock’s care and feeding in specific. I know my way around the this Katrina Pistol and Katrina Box since I built it, but others who depended upon me will need help when if I’m not around. I cannot overstate the importance of planning beyond you. Giving a Katria Pistol is a gift. Giving the Katrina Pistol to a loved one who has limited experience with guns and security is a potential disaster. And that would be on you…or me.

Think Outside The Box

glock_19_katrina_pistol_trijicon_streamlight_tlr2_surefire_katrina_box_shtfNext to the Katrina Pistol Box is a Bug Out Bullet Bottle containing another 300 rounds of 9mm FMJ. Since the Katrina Pistol Box already weighs in at 12 pounds, adding a quart of ammo increases the Katrina Pistol loadout another 7.7 pounds. Of course you can always dump out weight as I noted in my article on 11.5 Bug Out Bag Mistakes that are not Mistakes. But as also noted, you cannot dump out what you do not have.

The holster presented a problem in the smaller Pelican case. I could fit it inside the case but would have to scrub the 33 round mag and the 17 rounder. Also some of the smaller kit would not fit except under extreme Pelican pressure. I opted to kick that problem down the road, but will likely just use a larger Pelican case and reassess the theory behind the box in the first place. Stay tuned for that.

Katrina Means You Are On Your Own

There were many lessons from the original Katrina event, and many, make that most, were true SHTF implications. If this Katrina Pistol truly comes into its own, then not only are you on your own, but you are likely your own thin Red, White, and Blue line. Don’t be scared, but do admit the reality when it presents itself. No matter the direction the future takes, a multi-use, near-indestructible pistol with light, laser and optic is now on my short list of what to grab for any situation.

It’s The Ultimate Survival Cartridge (Because It Won’t Ever Be Banned)

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It's The Ultimate Survival Cartridge (Because It Won't Ever Be Banned)

Image source: Flickr. License: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

Developed for use in the famous Model 1873 “Trapdoor” Springfield rifle, the 45-70 cartridge has managed to remain popular and in regular use for nearly 150 years. While commonly regarded as a big-game load – it has been used on African safaris to take elephants — it can serve as the ultimate survival round with a little care in loading and understanding, thus making any .45-70 firearm into a one-gun-does-it-all game-getter.

It originally was issued with a 405 grain bullet over a 70 grain black powder charge, but later versions included rounds with a lighter 55 grain powder charge for carbines, and a 500 grain bullet over 70 grains of powder. Any of these loads would be devastating on large game, and the full power loads suitable for even buffalo or large bear. These loads, developed with black powder pressures, are commonly referred to as “Trapdoor” loads, indicating their suitability for guns that cannot handle higher pressures. These include the many original and replica Springfields running around, and certain older Harrington and Richardson single shot rifles, and such.

However, stronger actions have been developed, and many modern .45-70s can take higher pressure loads made with smokeless powders — typically Marlin and Henry lever-action rifles, and .45-70 pistols. These loads are sometimes called standard or intermediate loads, and should never be shot in Trapdoors or old black powder rifles. Moving on up are loads for strong-action rifles, such as the Ruger Number 1, and the NEF Handi Rifle. When shooting these high-pressure shoulder bruisers, it is important you only shoot them in guns warranted by the manufacturer of the ammo or gun as suitable for high-pressure loads.

After the .45-70 was invented, it didn’t take long for the Army to issue so-called “forager rounds.” These are .45-70 cases loaded with a shot-filled wooden bullet and issued for hunting game, and also where we start exploring the world of the .45-70 as an all-around survival cartridge. We are probably familiar with “snake shot” or “rat shot” rounds for the .22 and some common handguns, and the same concept can be scaled up for the .45-70, and will successfully take game out to a few yards. While it’s no long-range game-getter, it is suitable for taking small game at realistic ranges. Since these sorts of shells have to be made by hand, some experimenting with powder and shot charges will be needed to find the right load for your gun. While not a substitute for a traditional small-game gun, these will work, and are the first step into creating a survival loadout for your favorite .45-70.

Be Prepared. Learn The Best Ways To Hide Your Guns.

It's The Ultimate Survival Cartridge (Because It Won't Ever Be Banned) We also have the “collar button” bullets. Developed to allow troops to practice marksmanship indoors with a low-recoiling round, these 150ish grain bullets are easy to shoot, accurate and more importantly, can be used to hunt all sorts of game, saving both powder and lead. This is another case where the patient handloader will have to get molds, cast their own bullets and work up a load suitable for their rifle and their needs.

Beyond this, there are a huge array of 300-500 grain bullets suitable for the .45-70, and depending on the powder charge, suitable for literally any living creature walking the face of the earth. With a little care and effort, a person with even a trapdoor Springfield can have a survival weapon that will harvest everything from small to big game.

The .45-70 firearms have been made for a century and a half in this country, and the popularity of this round shows no signs of abating. It is not only a classic American cartridge, but it is rich with the history and romance of the Old West and has proven itself in combat and survival situations. The well-equipped homesteader or prepper gains another advantage with the .45-70, in that it was originally a black powder cartridge. If you have a supply of lead and primers, you can make your own powder, and turn your big bore rifle into the ultimate off-the-grid shooting iron.

As an added bonus, nearly every .45-70 made falls into some sort of “traditional” looking form, be it single shots or lever-action rifles. These are commonly seen as “safe” in the eyes of anti-gunners, and are rarely targeted for increased regulation or confiscation. It is possible that in some horrible future, your old buffalo gun might be the only firearm you can openly own or discuss, and combined with the huge array of loads for it makes it an excellent under-the-radar gun.

While not as sexy as an AR-15, or cool as a modern tactical bolt-action rifle, with the right loads, the .45-70 has been feeding and fighting for America for generations. It is an unbroken line of culture and defense handed down from our ancestors to the present day, and if you listen closely, you, too, can hear the wisdom of keeping that big boomer around for another generation.

Do you agree or disagree? Are you a fan of the .45-70? Share your thoughts in the section below:

Pump Shotguns Have One BIG Advantage Over Other Shotguns For Home Defense. Read More Here.

Leather Vs. Kydex: Which Is Truly Better For Everyday Carry?

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Leather Vs. Kydex: Which Is Truly Best For Concealed Carry?

Image source: Pixabay.com

Leather vs. Kydex — it’s been a point of contention among shooters since the first days of the Kydex holster in the 1970s, but leather has endured and doesn’t seem to be budging anytime soon. And for good reason.

Let’s just say they’re both pretty awesome, but we should not give them a pass that easily. Though both options definitely have their strong points, the cons on these weapon carry options can make a grown man cry (literally). For instance …

You know that clacky-scrapy sound, when someone fast-draws from a Kydex thigh rig? If you’re like me, then chances are that you would always think, “Hmm… sounds cool, but it also sounds like this 1911 will soon be headed back to the blueing bench again.” Hey, let’s face it: Kydex can be very tough on weapon finish. It might not be able to remove the hard water stains off the Hoover Dam, but it’s definitely known for giving a handgun’s blueing the wire-brush treatment.

Be Prepared. Learn The Best Ways To Hide Your Guns.

On the other hand, we should also not forget that Kydex holsters have always been known for being safe and effective. Leather holsters, on the other hand? Well, to be fair, I am reminded of this old video. Viewer discretion is advised.

Story continues below video

 

Turns out that if you don’t take care of your everyday-carry leather holster, then it could deform near the trigger well. And if you’re also running a 1911 with a trigger that tends to pull about the weight of an average Chihuahua … well, yes, then you’d have the perfect storm for an accidental discharge — not to mention a subsequent gunshot wound to the leg.

When it comes to leather, the rule is simple: Take care of your holster, and it will take care of you.

Ye Olde Benefits of Leather

Leather holsters basically last forever. Believe it or not, some holsters that are being used today will remain functional longer than most humans will remain living. Heck, there are even holsters from 167 years ago that are still on display, and they look great! So, you might as well write your leather sheath or holster into your will, because it’s not going anywhere anytime soon.

With that being said, leather simply has no equal in classiness, general attractiveness, and has been making gunslingers swoon for a century and a half. You just can’t beat the sight of a Colt Peacemaker, nestled gently inside an oiled piece of cowhide and fitted to a gunbelt. Speaking of which, another interesting — but often overlooked — benefit of leather is that they make for a great CCW holster. They’re smooth, won’t snag on clothing, and they’re more form-fitting, flexible and comfy.

Why Kydex Rocks

Kydex is way cheaper (at least in comparison to leather holsters) and simply refuses to bow down to mud, dirt, grime, moisture, sweat or even fish guts. Not to mention, it barely requires any form of regular maintenance. Basically, just pray over it once a year, and you’re good. Allow me to elaborate by quoting one of the greats, Robert Farago from The Truth About Guns:

KYDEX 100 is known in the business as “The Gold Standard for Thermoforming.” It’s super tough and durable. It arrives at the holster or sheath maker’s shop in a proprietary “alloy sheet.” It offers excellent formability, rigidity, break and chemical resistance. It also withstands high temperatures.

Now that sounds complicated enough to convince me on the durability factor. (But just to be fair, Farago does rip on Kydex earlier in the same article, due to its hate for gun finishes.)

To be honest, I’m not exactly sure that this article had much of an impact on the Kydex vs. leather debate, but hey, at least we had some fun in the process. To recap what we’ve learned here today, I will leave you with a good rule of thumb when trying to decide which holster is right for you:

Pick the leather holster for your Sunday clothes.

For everything else, there’s Kydex.

Which holster type do you prefer? Share your thoughts in the section below:

Pump Shotguns Have One BIG Advantage Over Other Shotguns For Home Defense. Read More Here.

The Theory and Practical Application of the “Walking Around Rifle”

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shtfblog_survival_cache_best_survival_rifle_ar15_sako_l-46_featured

shtfblog_survival_cache_best_survival_rifle_ar15_sako_leupoldI’ll admit it readily; I’m a gun snob of the highest accord. I like my guns classy, old, and made of walnut and blued steel, forged and carved by craftsmen from a different era. I’m not saying that I don’t have and use ARs and polymer-framed pistols – I do; they are my “oh shit” guns, and I use and abuse them properly. What I am saying is that if I don’t need to be using that high-capacity new-age gun at a given time, I’m not gonna. Though the AR platform is great for a small-to-medium-game hunting platform, I’d rather ditch the “Rambo” vibe and carry something with a “soul” when I decide to head into the woods for an afternoon of scouting, hiking, or snowshoeing. A well-used and -loved decades-old rifle on my shoulder feels to me like it’s bringing company; call it corny, but I like to think that a small part of every man, woman, and child who ever had that gun in their hands comes with me when I carry these old firearms around. It’s comforting and warming to me – and modern milled-and-molded aluminum and plastic guns just don’t give me the same warm and fuzzy feeling.

By Drew, a contributing author to SHTFBlog & Survival Cache

To that end, I get picky on the guns that I buy; I’m not an accumulator like many other self-proclaimed gun snobs I know. I buy quality items sparingly, and use every gun that I buy. If a firearm doesn’t perform, just isn’t quite what I had in mind, or falls by the usage wayside, it gets sold or traded off. Too many guns is wonderful, but it’s a maintenance and security liability I don’t want to deal with. So I only buy firearms that I connect with – both literally and figuratively.

The “Walking Around Rifle” 

coljeffcooperLike the infamous “Scout Rifle” concept idea put to words by the immortal Jeff Cooper, the idea that came to be dubbed my “Walking Around Rifle” probably needs some explanation. While my conceptualization wasn’t quite as specific as Mr. Cooper’s to-the-letter explanation, the idea in my head had to fulfill certain requirements. The idea was kick-started by my sighting of a rifle at a local gun shop – a rifle I didn’t know I needed until I saw it. It was a Savage 23D, a featherweight middle-sized sporter in the elusive and under-appreciated .22 Hornet caliber, manufactured somewhere between 1923 and 1942. The smooth, warm oil-dark walnut with the worn checkering called to me, as did the detachable magazine and slightly worn bluing. The rifle sported an inexpensive Simmons 3-9x scope, probably weighed all of six pounds, and wore a price tag of $350.00. It was lust at first sight. Soon, visions of popping deer-chasing nuisance winter coyotes with the quick-handling rifle were dancing in my head.

I then committed a major gun-buyer faux pas: I didn’t put money down on the rifle. Heating season was coming up, the baby needed winter clothes, and I just couldn’t justify putting bill money down to nab the rifle. (being an adult sometimes isn’t all it’s wrapped up to be). So I put it back in the rack and justified my actions by thinking “surely nobody will want an old .22 Hornet”.

I was wrong. I went back a couple weeks later to find that surely someone did indeed want an old .22 Hornet, and they had wanted it the day before I walked in the door with money. So I was back to the drawing board to come up with a snazzy, lightweight firearm to fill the new hunting/hiking void I’d created in my head.

I sat down and listed my criteria. The needed requirements were few, but relatively specific.

  • Caliber – centerfire, flat-shooting, capable of downing small and medium-sized game. I hand-load, so ammunition availability wasn’t too much of an issue as long as I could find brass and it was in a common bullet caliber.
  • Bolt-action or break-open, for less moving parts and lower potential for breakage/wear. Likely higher potential accuracy as well over lever actions, pumps, and semi-autos.
  • Provision to mount optics, namely a high-quality fixed low-power scope.
  • Provision for backup fixed sights – because optics can fail, even good ones.
  • Light(er) weight – I didn’t want to pack around a 9 pound rifle – so I was looking for a scaled-down action and lightweight makeup
  • Unique if possible, made up of blued steel and walnut – I had to assuage the inner gun snob, after all. I could have sourced a new Remington Model Seven Synthetic in .223 and it would have fit this bill to a T – but it just doesn’t appeal to me. I wanted something less than commonplace.

Why Did I Want a Walking Around Rifle? 

I realize some may not see the need for this rifle, and I can understand that. Why carry around a rifle that really is somewhat limited in purpose and versatility, especially when the bug-out AR-15 fits the bill? Why not a bigger rifle/caliber combination, like a .308, that is more capable over a wider array of situations?

Related: The Katrina Rifle 

This rifle requirement all stems from what I like to do. My woods time is usually comprised of keeping up to date with bug-out locations, exploring, hunting coyotes, or – most frequently – scouting deer patterns for an upcoming whitetail deer season. A rifle is handy to eliminate pests, use as a signalling device, or even provide security. The rifle has range and accuracy capabilities that far surpass even the most precise handgun, at the price of added bulk. However, when snowshoeing and scaling mountainous countryside with a pack, the added bulk can be a burden – so I needed to be picky about the size and contours of the rifle. Semi-auto firepower wasn’t a requirement – in all likelihood, the rifle won’t even be fired on most excursions – so precision and unobtrusive carrying qualities take precedence over lots of fast follow-up shots.

To sum things up: My rifle’s mission was to be portable,and have more punch and range than a .22 Long Rifle or similar rimfire caliber. The .22 LR works well as a small-game foraging rifle, but just doesn’t possess the additional horsepower I wanted to have available.

So Why These Requirements? 

223remingtonCaliber – Here in Maine, the need for a large caliber to pull anti-animal duty only runs a couple of months – usually September, October, and November, when black bear and whitetail deer season are open, to the delight of local and imported sportsmen. The remainder of the year, most traditionally edible game animals are not legal quarry. Porcupines, woodchucks, coyotes, and red squirrels are the only critters that Maine allows sportsmen to pursue year-round. For these animals, a large caliber rifle just isn’t needed for clean kills. Certainly, a .22 Long Rifle can be considered viable for vermin dispatching duties at appropriate ranges. However, once the ranges open up past 50 yards, the stalwart .22 LR’s and even the .22 Magnum’s meager ballistics start becoming a hindrance, and clean kills are not certain. So we need to start looking at the centerfire family of cartridges to carry the fight to undesirable fur bearing creatures (or even emergency anti-deer use) at longer distances. The .22 Hornet, .222 Remington, and .223 Remington/ 5.56x45mm are all cartridges that were squarely in my sights. Surely, the .22-250, .220 Swift, .204 Ruger, and .17 Remington would have all been good, even excellent, at what I wanted – but since I reload, I wanted smaller, efficient calibers that didn’t burn a ton of powder (eliminating the .22-250 and .220 Swift), and were in bullet diameters that I had on hand – namely the common .224” bullet (there goes the .17 Remington and .204 Ruger.). I briefly considered older-though-still-cool-and-sort-of-useful calibers such as the .218 Bee, .25-20 Winchester, and .32-20 WCF, but the difficulty and expense of finding brass cases to reload, plus their lackluster long-range performance, put them out of the running once my brain overrode the romanticism of using the old calibers. So .22 Hornet, .222 Remington, and .223 Remington/5.56mm were the main focus. Rifles chambered in these smaller cased-cartridges also have the benefit of sometimes of having the action scaled down to the caliber – so you’re not lugging around a full-sized rifle that’s just a modified version of a full-sized short-action rifle meant for the .308 class of calibers.

shtf_survival_cache_shtfblog_windham_weaponry_308_ar10_r18fsfsm-308_aimpoint_comp_ml3_outdoors_midwest_industriesAction Type – Again, though I had an AR-15 that would fill this made-up mission quite nicely, I just didn’t want an AR over my shoulder while hoofin’ it. I’ve shot deer with a Windham Weaponry AR-10, and while it worked very well on a certain 5-point buck, it just didn’t feel right to a guy who grew up carrying leverguns and bolt actions in the woods. Also, once I shot said deer, carrying the AR became a whole bunch of not-fun: the brass deflector and charging handle kept digging into my body, the Picatinny rails caught clothing and abraded it, and the tall profile just made sure there was more surface area to get in the way. Purpose-designed traditional hunting rifles are generally lower-profile, smoother, sleeker – easier to carry once you don’t need them anymore and you’re dragging 170 pounds of dead ungulate weight behind you.

Also – a reasoning that has somewhat more validity – bolt-action and single-actions are USUALLY more accurate than their semi-auto, lever, or pump counterparts. Yes, I know that there are hideously accurate semi-autos, and I’ve shot running deer at 150 yards with a lever action – but the bolt gun will be a bit more effective on little target critters at further distances due to its higher level of intrinsic accuracy. There are always exceptions to rules, but this is a statement I decided to bank on, based on personal experience and expected usage for the rifle.

Optics/Sights– This is a no-brainer. I need to be able to scope the rifle for longer-ranged shots. However, I like redundancy in my firearm sighting methods, so I’d like to be able to have the provision for iron sights. Scopes fog up, batteries run out, slips and falls leave firearms crashing to the ground (probably onto the largest, harshest, most abrasive rock in three counties) and optics get jarred out of alignment or damaged. A backup set of iron sights – no matter how rudimentary – is just a nice piece of security to have.

Lighter Weight– Again, another no-brainer. The less your rifle weighs, the more likely you will have it with you, and the more convenient it will be. The scaled-down action size of the smaller calibers I was looking at help a lot in this department.  I almost bought or sought several different firearms that neatly fit the bill; they were all quite capable and fully met my needs…I just never seemed to pull the trigger (pun intended).

I was drawn to the CZ 527. A nifty little scaled-down carbine with a detachable box magazine, it comes in .22 Hornet and .223 (and interestingly, 7.62x39mm Russian…interesting…). But they are difficult to find ‘round these parts due to their popularity and immense handiness, and I ended up finding my solution before I found one of these.

The H&R Handi-Rifle was a great option, too – and I almost ordered one up. They are rugged, dependable, no-nonsense, inexpensive break-open single-shot rifles that feature interchangeable calibers by swapping out the barrels. I’ve had a lot of fun with these rifles over the years, and they certainly hold a special place in my heart. They come in .22 Hornet and .223, (and lots of other calibers and gauges) with black synthetic stocks that lend themselves well to a beat-around rifle. I know it wasn’t walnut or terribly unique, so I kept looking despite the utility.

The Remington 799 is a scaled-down version of the fabled Mauser 98 action, and if I had seen one in .22 Hornet, .222, or .223 (all standard calibers for the rifle), I might have scoffed one up in a heartbeat if it was of decent quality – I had never actually seen one, but the specs look good.  Of course, another Savage 23 or a Winchester 43 would have been lovely – but alas, not for sale in my neck of the woods.

The Solution Presents Itself 

After the mildly devastating loss of the vintage Savage .22 Hornet, I was on the hunt. No gun shop in the locale was safe from my perusal. There were lots of options that would have fit the bill, but Captain Gun Snob was being fussy. I wanted something a bit different….

Read Also: Sig Suaer MPX-C Review 

One day, my wife and I were skimming through the local Cabelas, and somehow she actually followed me into the gun library (it hasn’t happened again since, I’ve noticed…). She was present at my side when I sucked in a deep gasp and quickly opened one of the upper glass cases to reach for the gloriousness of a rifle that had caught my eye.

Sako L-42 in .222 Remington

A 1950’s-manufactured Sako L-46 “Riihimäki” in .222 Remington, complete with graceful full-length “Mannlicher” style stock, detachable 3-round magazine, and vintage steel-tube El Paso Weaver K4 fixed 4x scope in Redfield Jr. rings had my complete and undivided attention. I fell in such instant and complete lust with the trim, beautiful little rifle that I didn’t even care if my wife saw the $1,199.00 price tag (which she did). I put the rifle on layaway, and a few too-slow weeks later, the rifle came home with me. My wishes had come true and the fun began.

I stocked up on factory ammo and empty brass where I could find it, and I’ve spent a very joyful past few months developing a handload that shoots well. I also replaced the charming (but prone to fogging) Weaver K4 with a vintage Leupold M8 fixed 4x scope that is a perfect match for the rifle. A canvas sling was added, and the rifle has reached “perfection” status in my eyes. It propels a 50-grain Hornady soft-point varmint bullet at 3200 feet per second out of the 23-inch barrel, and can group 5 of them into a neat 1-inch cluster at 100 yards. The rifle has a hooded front sight, and I found an ultra-rare Redfield scope mount with an integral flip-up aperture rear sight. It rides delightfully next to a pack on my shoulder or in my hand,and fulfills every one of my requirements. I’m a happy camper, mission accomplished!

Yeah, But Does This Have Anything to do With Survival?

Sako and a BOB

Some of you may just view this as bombastic gun bragging, and maybe it is to a small degree. But more than that, I’m trying to portray that there are other options – quality, graceful options – out there to fulfill the needs of the forager/scout/pest control mission. I know that for many individuals, the AR-15 or other military-type platforms are distasteful, impractical, unneeded, or unwanted, and commercial hunting rifle offerings punch the ticket nicely. The AR and other platforms are truly versatile and may be a better way to go if you’re on a one-gun budget for SHTF-type needs, but if you have other plans for scouting, small-to-medium game hunting, or pest eradication post-SHTF, why not have another rifle that doesn’t use your stockpile of “oh no” ammo? Why not have a rifle that says “Hunter” or “Rancher” instead of “Prepper” or “Survivalist” or “Military”? And truth be told, the day may come when your AR-15 or similar rifle may not be able to see the light of day due to legislation; you’ll still want to be able to have a quality, accurate rifle on your shoulder that is capable of pulling off multi-mission duty and not set off alarms. A rifle that shares a common caliber as your SHTF rifle may be a great idea too (like the CZ527 carbine in .223 to compliment your AR). Just food for thought.

What do you think? Do you have a secondary/scouting type rifle in your plans? Or does your situation and prepping make a rifle such as this unnecessary? Sound off in the comments!

Photos Courtesy of:
Drew
Lauren Nicole Photography 

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The iPhone-Sized ‘Pocket Pistol’ That Fires Rifle Ammo

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The iPhone-Sized ‘Pocket Pistol’ That Fires Rifle Ammo

PAK1. Image source: Terry Nelson

Missouri-based Heizer Defense makes a selection of unusual derringers that can fit the bill for a range of specialized needs, while having stylized appeal and serious power.

The company is family-owned and operated, and grew from humble beginnings. The family of Charlie Heizer, now 83, escaped Hungary during World War II and relocated to the Midwestern U.S. An engineer and inventor at heart, Heizer became educated as an aerospace engineer. Among his many inventions are a series of derringers — with looks and features entirely unlike others on the market.

On a recent range outing, I had the opportunity to handle and fire two Heizer pistols with rifle-caliber chambering. Who’d have ever thought you could fire a .223 (PAR1) or 7.62 x .39 (PAK1) cartridge from a palm-size pistol? The company also makes a .45 LC/.410 model. The barrels can be interchanged with either the PAK1 or PAR1.

The little guns have a single-shot, break-open action, operated by a zero-profile sliding lever on the left side of the frame. Loading is similar to a shotgun of the same style. The 45 LC model can store two extra rounds in the grip.

The iPhone-Sized ‘Pocket Pistol’ That Fires Rifle Ammo

PAR1

Construction is entirely of U.S.-made stainless steel.

“This is the same steel C-130 landing gear is made of,” said Heizer Defense’s Hedy Heizer.

The trigger is a patented roller-bearing design, with a long, eight-pound pull as a safety feature. (Though I’ll add, safe carry method and finger disciplines are the best safety features.) The molded, non-adjustable sights are small and plain, but usable.

These guns are thin and pancake-like, with a squared profile but rounded edges. The shape is conducive to discreet pocket carry. Overall dimensions are 3 7/8 inches in height, .7 inches in width and 6 3/8 inches in length for both the pocket AR and AK. Weight is 23 ounces. Muzzle velocity for the AK is 1,200 fps and 1,400 fps for the AR.

Heizer guns’ durable construction is made more so by the hammer and other action components contained in the frame. There’s nothing to gather dirt or catch on clothing.

The 7.62 x 39 has a ported barrel for recoil reduction. It’s still snappy. According to Heizer reps, the porting only sacrifices 110 feet per second of muzzle velocity. The .223 recoil is very manageable and would compare to a small frame 45 ACP.

Currently, there’s no holster customized for Heizer guns. Brand representatives were sporting Sticky brand holsters, which seemed to work well. I’m otherwise familiar with this brand, and they are pocket- and waistband-friendly. In essence, the Heizer Derringer is comparable to carrying today’s iPhone.

The PAK1 and PAR1 have the advantages of being light and packable or concealable, while having the truly unique advantage of being able to fire a high power cartridge from a tiny package. Powerful as they are, they’re still manageable to shoot. The Heizer Company recommends not using lacquer-covered ammunition for these guns.

On the downside is the single-shot capacity. If you care to look at it from a weight-to-capacity ratio, it’s a bit heavy. Cost is reasonable at $449 for the PAK1 and $399 for the PAR1.

Personally, I see these little guns as a great last ditch carry gun, or one you can throw in a pack with a bit of ammo for any potential survival circumstance.

Have you shot a Heizer PAK1 or PAR1? What is your favorite pocket pistol? Share your thoughts in the section below:

Pump-Action Shotgun – The Most Versatile Gun

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shotgun

Todd’s Note: This is a guest post by Vitaly Pedchenko, owner of Rem870.com.

A pump-action shotgun is without a doubt one of the most versatile survival shotguns in the world. One of the reasons for its versatility has to do with how well it performs and the multiple environments it is suitable for. When you operate the weapon, your hand will go on the specially designed handgrip near the stock while your other hand goes on the forend. From there, you just pump the forend back to eject the shell from the chamber that you just used and then pump it forward to replace the shell with a new one.

Pump-action shotguns are used for a variety of activities such as hunting, home defense, law enforcement purposes, survival, and even for stopping riots with non-lethal ammunition. Let’s take hunting, for example. If you are hunting deer and you see one running by in the distance, you may only have a couple of seconds to react before the deer runs away. That means you’ll have to hit the deer on your first try or else it’ll run away and you’ll lose the opportunity to get him. With a pump-action shotgun, you have multiple chances to shoot the deer within a much shorter timeframe. This increases your odds of hitting him before it can get away. As for home defense and law enforcement purposes, these can be a matter of life and death. If an intruder or suspect starts shooting in your direction, you’ll need to fire as many shots as you can to scare them off or incapacitate them. The pump-action shotgun is the most reliable in these circumstances and can result in your life being saved because of it.

Gun enthusiasts often refer to pump action shotguns as slide-action repeating shotguns because it describes how you slide the forend back to extract a shell and then pump it forward to load a new shell into the chamber. These shotguns only use a single barrel which is located on top of the tubular magazine that the shells go into. This is how the pumping of the forend is able to take shells out of the magazine tube and place them into the chamber. Of course, you have the option of replacing the forend with a better one if you know how to do so. Some shooters like to have forends with grips on them so it is easier to hold it more securely while they’re using the weapon. If you want to get really fancy, then you can even mount a tactical flashlight to the forend so you can see in the dark. Some forend upgrades, such as the Surefire Light Forend, features a light integrated right into the forend so you don’t even have to mount anything to it.

If you are a newbie to shotgun ownership, then you will find it easier to perform maintenance on the pump-action shotgun. Activities such as cleaning the bore and chamber of gunpowder residue and debris are much more simplified with the pump action shotgun. When it comes to firing the weapon, it will take a lot of practice to get comfortable with it if you’ve never fired a pump-action weapon before. After you have gotten enough experience operating it, you may want to perform certain upgrades on it that may be necessary for repair purposes or just because you want to customize the weapon to fit your needs. For example, a lot of shotgun owners get tired of the factory stock, forend, controls, barrel that came with their weapon. They’d much rather upgrade these parts to ones that allow them to use shotgun more comfortably. Making these upgrades is a piece of cake with the pump action shotgun.

There aren’t too many disadvantages with pump action shotguns. The only real disadvantage is that you cannot add a detachable magazine in order to reload the weapon quickly. You can’t just pop out the magazine and attach a new one like you can with most rifles and some other shotgun types. But if you are just using your pump-action shotgun for hunting or home defense, then it shouldn’t be an issue. On the other hand, if you truly need to extend the ammunition capacity of your shotgun then there are tubular magazine extensions you can add. But it will still take some time to reload them after you use up all the ammunition that they hold.

About the Author: Vitaly Pedchenko, owner of Rem870.com – blog and forum about the Remington 870 shotgun. Competitive shooter and gun enthusiast. Author of the Complete Remington 870 Guide ebook.

Peace,
Todd

The First 5 Items That Should Be In EVERYONE’S Everyday Carry

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The First 5 Items That Should Be In EVERYONE'S Everyday Carry

You likely already know that what you carry with you on a daily basis is influenced by whether you live in the city, in a small town or on a farm, as well as by the job you have and the mode of transportation you use.

Nevertheless, there are a few everyday carry (EDC) items that should be in everyone’s pockets, purses, briefcases and so on. Here are five:

1. The band-aid

I took part in an experts’ round-up a while back, which is in essence a mega-article where they take survival “gurus” and ask them what the most important survival item is. Everyone said knives and multi-tools, but I said band-aid.

Why? You never know when you might get a cut or a bruise. It is much more likely than landing in the middle of social unrest and having to make your way home through angry mobs and tear gas. Even then, you could still get injured and need to patch yourself up.

I carry a band-aid in each wallet, in my gym bag and, of course, a few in my car. They’re cheap, lightweight and small.

2. The phone*

Duh, everyone carries a phone, right? Maybe, but is your phone prepared? I’m talking about loading it up with survival eBooks, GPS apps, offline maps and so on.

The Survival Water Filter That Fits In Your POCKET!

If you live on a farm or spend a lot of time outdoors or on construction sites, do you have a rugged phone, or at least a shock-absorbent case?

Whether or not you’re a HAM radio enthusiast or have a couple of walkie-talkies in the trunk of your car, your phone is likely to be the thing you use to call for help in an emergency or to make sure your family is safe.

3. Cash

You don’t have to believe ATM machines will stop functioning in a disaster situation. You should always have some cash on you, because it can get you out of a pickle fast. It’s accepted everywhere.

4. A pocket knife

The First 5 Items That Should Be In EVERYONE'S Everyday CarryThere’s nothing like a knife to make you feel safer. Well, maybe a gun, but not every location allows it to be legally carried. A pocket knife is the next best thing. It can help you escape an attacker, and you can use it to cut and open things.

Whether you sleep with a gun under your pillow or you think guns are evil, a pocket knife can be your everyday best friend.

5. A fire-starting device

It doesn’t matter if it’s a lighter or a magnesium fire-starter, the ability to ignite fire should never be ignored. You can use fire in a variety of survival situations: to signal someone, to cook a meal, and, of course, to keep you warm.

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So there you have it: The minimum number of EDC items (according to my humble opinion). Now, I know I left out things like your house keys, but I don’t really consider those to be survival items. I also know you can add dozens of other things to your EDC, and I encourage you to do so.

You can build on them by adding things such as:

  • a larger wallet to fit more items.
  • a mini first-aid kit.
  • a credit card shaped Fresnel lens
  • a multi-tool
  • a compass
  • a concealed carry revolver
  • … and so on

What would you list as your five “minimum” everyday carry items? Share your advice in the section below:

Learn How To ‘Live Off The Land’ With Just Your Gun. Read More Here.

Book: The Do-it-Yourself Submachine Gun

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See larger image The Do-it-Yourself Submachine Gun: It’s Homemade, 9mm, Lightweight, Durable-And It’ll Never Be On Any Import Ban Lists! Build your own 9mm, blowback, selective-fire submachine gun that’s as powerful as an Uzi or Read More …

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The Surprisingly Simple Way To Avoid Being Robbed

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The Surprisingly Simple Way To Avoid Being Robbed

Image source: Pixabay.com

Let me start this out with a bit of a test for you. Try to answer the following questions:

  • The last time you stopped for gas, how many other cars were getting gas?
  • What color socks was your boss wearing today?
  • What did the people in front of you and behind you at the grocery line look like?
  • How many of your neighbors left this morning, before you did?
  • Were there any unusual cars parked on your street when you got home today?

If you can answer any of those questions, without it being pure guess work, you’re doing good. The truth is, though, that most of us can’t. We become used to the situations around us and then just stop noticing them. Then, when something new or different comes along, we don’t even recognize it for what it is.

Instead, we’re looking at our smartphones — checking email, texting friends, or posting pictures to Facebook.

“So, what?” you might say. “Who cares about my boss’s socks or the other people stopped in the same gas station?” If that’s your reaction, trust me, you’re not alone. Most of the adults on this planet would say more or less the same thing. But then, those same people would step on a land mine, without even realizing it until it went “boom.”

The thing is, not being aware of what’s going on around you can be deadly. Just about every dangerous situation we can find ourselves in has some sort of warning. But like the intelligence before the attack on Pearl Harbor, ignoring those warning signs can have grave consequences.

What we need is situational awareness. Situational awareness is nothing more than being aware of what is around you and what the people or things around you are doing. It is being so aware of your surroundings that when something changes, you notice it. It’s knowing what to expect, so that the unexpected stands out. More than anything, it’s seeing things that could be a threat, and analyzing that threat before it can manifest.

Without situational awareness, we’re more likely to get mugged, to get carjacked, to get pickpocketed.

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I recently re-watched one of the Sherlock Holmes movies, starring Robert Downey, Jr. At one point in the story, his female companion asked him, “What do you see?” To which he responded, “Everything. That’s my curse. I see everything.” That’s part of what made Sherlock so successful. He saw things that others didn’t see. Had he been a real person, rather than just a character in a story, his situational awareness would have served him well.

Ask any soldier who has been in war, and they’ll tell you how important situational awareness is. Seeing things that can be a threat, before that threat manifests itself, can be the difference between life and death, especially in the close environment that is urban warfare.

The Surprisingly Simple Way To Avoid Being Robbed

Image source: Pixabay.com

But situational awareness goes totally against our nature. We are creatures of habit, and we normally go through life without noticing things around us. Few of us can remember details of what happened in the television shows we watched last night, let alone tell what the person in front of us ordered at our favorite coffee house. Thus, we’ll never be a Sherlock Homes and if we are ever put into a position where seeing is survival … we might not make it home.

Developing Situational Awareness

So if situational awareness is so important and is against our nature, how does one acquire it? What can we do, to make ourselves more aware of our surroundings, than we are today?

To start with, we must make a decision to become more aware — not a wishy-washy decision, but a firm one. That, in and of itself, will make a huge difference, simply because we’ll be thinking about the need to be aware. We’ll open our eyes and start looking around us, just because we know that we should.

Still, that isn’t enough. It’s just a start. Building situational awareness requires practice. We’ve got to train our mind to pay attention to what our eyes are seeing. So, we need to develop a series of exercises, which will help us to see. Things like:

  • Make a habit of knowing how many people are within 100 feet of you, where they are and what they are doing.
  • Count the number of cars of a particular color as you drive somewhere.
  • Look at what a co-worker wears to work every day and try to remember it. See how many days’ worth of attire you can recall, and if you can recall the last time they wore a particular shirt or outfit.
  • Learn what cars your neighbors drive. Then, make it a habit to look for new or different cars, every time you step out of your home. Look for patterns, to see if certain cars show up at certain times.

Once you are more aware, it’s time to start putting that awareness to use. Start looking at people to see what they are doing and try to evaluate how much of a threat they are. Use a scale from one to 10, with one being no threat at all and 10 meaning it’s time to draw a gun to protect yourself. Rate each person, even if there are many people around you. Then, keep track of those with a higher score, updating your score as you go.

Ultimately, that’s what situational awareness is all about — finding threats. Once it becomes a habit, it will help you in countless ways.

What advice would you add on becoming more situationally aware? Share your tips in the section below:

If The Grid’s Down And You Don’t Have Ammo, What Would You Do? Read More Here.

Is This The Absolute Best Gun For Concealed Carry During Winter?

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Is This The Absolute Best Gun For Winter Concealed Carry?

Image source: Glock.com

News flash: There’s been almost a century-long debate on which is the best caliber for CCW. Groundbreaking stuff, right?

Well, if I’m going to contribute to the conversation on this one, then here’s my thoughts: There is no single perfect round, in the same way that there’s no single perfect survival knife. If anything, perfection in this case is situationally dependent — meaning that perfection in a CCW round for one person may be the exact opposite to what perfection means for someone else.

Additionally, one of the variables in our ongoing search for personal CCW perfection has to do with the changing seasons. Given how we’re finding ourselves peering down the barrel of the coming winter, then I feel it’s time for us to gear up and get our CCW needs squared away before the snow starts falling. And this is why I, personally, am a fan of the 45 ACP for the application of winter concealed-carry. Here are my reasons …

It’s High Time For a Full-Size

Though the Bob Munden-types may be able to put a .38 Special round on a pie plate-sized target from 200 yards off with a “belly gun,” for the rest of us it’s just easier to achieve better accuracy with a full-sized weapon. There’s greater distance between the front and rear sights, subsequent shots are easier to make with more weight at the muzzle, and you’ve got a greater contact area on a larger frame, allowing for increased stability and handling. At the end of the day, a full-sized handgun offers better shooting and easier shooting.

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However, in the warmer months, it’s MUCH harder to successfully conceal a full-sized weapon under a T-shirt or light button-down — that is, unless you’re Lou Ferrigno. But in the winter, you have the option of wearing a blazer, thicker fleece jackets, etc., and fewer worries of the awkward hip bulge that seems to draw unwanted attention.

Speaking of drawing, on the other hand, some of us need to wear gloves when temps really take a dive (depending on which region of the country in question). Try drawing effectively with gloves while carrying a compact handgun, and you probably know what I mean. And don’t attempt that last part if the weapon’s loaded … it’s just that clumsy of a situation. On a full-size weapon, however, this is actually a feasible possibility (with proper practice and training, of course).

Rounds Behave Differently Against Layers

When it comes to selecting a round, the primary issue is often centered around its capacity to effectively stop a person’s ability to present a lethal threat, once shot placement has successfully been achieved.

It’s really a question of velocity vs grains, the proper balance of which should lead to the necessary amount of energy transfer with just enough target penetration to get the job done. Often, the 45 ACP’s primary setback is the fact that it packs too much penetration power, and tends to exit the target, creating a dire situational need to watch the target’s background. This is one reason why concealed-carriers tend to opt for the more lightweight, higher-velocity semi-auto rounds: 9mm and 40 S&W.

Story continues below video

But in the winter, even potential lethal threats will be wearing additional and thicker layers of clothing: leather coats, lined parkas, etc. This means that either the velocity of the round needs to increase (+P), or the round itself needs to get heavier. The problem with higher velocities, however, has to do with fragmentation and the theoretical lack of energy-transfer that results — which is unfortunately one of the frustrations concerning the 9mm round.

With that in mind, a heavier round will maintain its power without the need for increased velocity. For instance, if a 45 ACP hollow-point has successfully been delivered on target, then something interesting should happen: the wad of clothing fibers that accumulates in the conical gap will not only cause the round to expand like a 9mm round, but this should also prevent over-penetration of the target, thereby maximizing energy-transfer.

And when the physics makes tactical sense, that’s called “stopping power.”

A Few Considerations …

But, of course, no caliber is without problems, so there are a few things to keep in mind with the 45 ACP.

It’s probably not much of a surprise that crime rates statistically fall during the colder months of the year, and this has been the case over the last 30 years. In short, you’re going to have a profoundly lower chance of encountering a lethal threat outdoors, while the probability of indoor encounters will either not change or slightly increase. And that means you’re hypothetically going to have to fire a 45 ACP weapon indoors in a defensive encounter … certainly not an ideal situation, because again, over-penetration-power remains a problem.

Also, if you do encounter a lethal threat outdoors, then magazine capacity could pose a bit of a problem, as well. Especially in the frigid cold, fingers go numb and the body is less responsive to motor commands from the brain — commands that you will depend on for accuracy when the adrenaline gets pumping. So in order to overcome this potential loss in accuracy, it’s just like everything else when it comes to firearms: train, train, train … and then train some more.

What is your preference for concealed carry during winter? Share your tips in the section below:

Pump Shotguns Have One BIG Advantage Over Other Shotguns For Home Defense. Read More Here.

The Forgotten Handgun Accessory You’ll Need In 60 Percent Of Encounters

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The Forgotten Handgun Accessory You’ll Need In 60 Percent Of Encounters

Image source: Wikipedia

Do you carry a handgun for self-defense? If so, carry a good flashlight. The statistics indicate approximately 60 percent of all confrontations occur in dim light conditions. That does not necessarily mean complete darkness, but rather diminished lighting to the point where your ability to identify the threat is jeopardized. You are responsible for knowing what you’re shooting at and for every round that leaves the muzzle.

Just like a good blade, there are many other reasons defensive-minded folks may want to carry a good light. Defensive strikes, a disorienting strobe, navigation and signaling all come to mind aside from threat identification. High quality pocket carry lights with variable brightness and strobe features are widely available today. There’s no reason not to carry one.

For most, the thought of holding a light and shooting is a daunting thought. Yes, there are weapon-mounted lights and lasers (lasers do not allow for identification), but there are some distinct advantages of a handheld light. One is that you can use a handheld light to search and identify without having to muzzle everyone. This would not be the case with a weapon-mounted light system. Weapon-mounted lights have their place, but you should carry a handheld, as well.

Keeping the above in mind, let’s examine some common methods for using a handheld light and shooting a pistol at the same time.

Harries Technique

This is probably one of the better-known techniques and has been used for years by police. The shooter holds a light with a rear- or side-pressure switch in the support hand, which moves under the gun hand as the weapon is aimed. Back of hands are then pressed together, creating “back of hand to back of hand” isometric tension. This creates a stable platform for shooting.

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A potential downside to this technique is that the light is essentially attached to the gun, similar to a weapon-mounted light. Thus, the shooter must be cognizant of muzzling anything they’re not willing to destroy while searching with light and gun together.

Chapman Technique

A flashlight with a side-mounted pressure switch is most appropriate here. In the support hand, the shooter will hold the light with the thumb already positioned on the pressure switch. The light is then positioned against and parallel to the support side of the pistol. The shooter’s middle, ring and pinky fingers give nearly full support to the shooting hand. In essence, you can obtain almost a full grip while still utilizing the flashlight. Once again, you must be aware of potential muzzling of unintended targets.

Rogers Technique

This method utilizes a rear pressure switch light, having a raised ridge or ring around the tubular housing. The light is held in the support hand between the index and middle fingers, akin to holding a cigar. The shooter pulls the light rearward, pressing the switch into the meaty portion of the palm/base of thumb, thereby activating the pressure switch. A full two-handed grip on the pistol can be obtained with the proper light and some practice. There are specific lights made for this technique. A flashlight with a rear-mounted pressure switch that works well with the Rogers method is the Surefire model G2ZX.

Neck Index

This technique requires you to shoot one handed and utilize the light separately. One benefit is that you can use the light to search and identify without muzzling unintentional targets, keeping your handgun in a low, ready position. There are several variations of this method: jaw index, ear index and cheek index. Use a rear-pressure switch light in the support hand and utilize the neck, jaw line, etc., to lightly rest and aim the light.

FBI Technique

The FBI method involves holding the light in the support hand, away from the body. This allows you to keep the light away from your center in case an assailant shoots into the light. It provides mobility of the support hand and arm to use the light for searching the threat area. This is another one-handed shooting technique that will require some practice.

As with any defensive firearm training method, I recommend the gun owner obtain professional instruction from a credible instructor. Remember that the majority of self-defense encounters occur in dark or at least reduced light conditions. If you choose to be armed, you owe it to yourself and others to become proficient in defensive methods to include shooting with a handheld light.

What advice would you add? Share it in the section below:  

If The Grid’s Down And You Don’t Have Ammo, What Would You Do? Read More Here.

32-Member SWAT Team Raids Home Because Man Had Registered Gun

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32-Member SWAT Team Raids Home Because Man Had Registered Gun

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A SWAT team with 32 officers, an armored vehicle and a sniper raided a man’s home because he had a license to carry a gun and a registered weapon — and because a former roommate had a little bit of marijuana.

During the search – which was criticized by a judge this month — deputies smashed Michael Delgado’s door and windows, and tossed flash-bang grenades into his house.

Worst of all, Delgado was not the target of the raid or even suspected of a crime. Deputies from the Hennepin County Emergency Services Unit (ESU) were actually searching for Walter Power. Power; who was wanted for selling marijuana, was believed to be staying at Delgado’s house in Golden Valley, Minnesota, in November 2015.

The ESU was called in because Delgado had a gun registered to his name and a license to carry it, and they feared he would use it, The Minneapolis Star-Tribune reported.

Unconstitutional Raid

The military-style tactics police used in the raid violated the Fourth Amendment to the Constitution, Hennepin County District Judge Tanya Bransford ruled. The Fourth Amendment bans unreasonable searches and seizures.

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Bransford compared the search to a 1992 case in which police raided a man’s home, blindfolded him and asked him questions without reading him his Miranda rights, the newspaper reported.

“[But] the militarized actions in [the Power] case were far more extreme,” Bransford wrote.

Bransford suppressed evidence found in the case, which forced the county attorney to drop charges against Power.

During the raid, the ESU brought a Ballistic Engineered Armored Response Vehicle, or BEAR. The BEAR is a landmine-resistant armored personnel carrier designed for use by troops on the battlefield. A flash-bang is a stun grenade that is designed to blind people with a bright flash of light.

Bransford’s ruling was dangerous because it puts law enforcement lives at risks, Jim Franklin, the Executive Director of the Minnesota Sheriff’s Association, told The Star-Tribune.

“My question to her is: Are you going to attend the dead cop’s funeral?” Franklin said of Bransford.

Veteran Fights to Get Gun Back

Even though the raid was declared unconstitutional and the charges against Power were dropped, Delgado was still in court in October 2016, fighting to get his legal gun back, The Star-Tribune reported. Delgado was also seeking reimbursement for broken windows and doors

“They could have said, ‘We’d like to search your house,’” Delgado said of the ESU. “They could have just asked.”

Use of the ESU has more than doubled over the past nine years. In 2007 the unit was deployed 30 times; in 2015 it was used on 71 occasions.

What is your reaction? Share it in the section below:

If The Grid’s Down And You Don’t Have Ammo, What Would You Do? Read More Here.

How To Pick Survival Guns For An Apocalypse | episode 121

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Survival Guns For An Apocalypse, best survival guns,

Survival Guns For An Apocalypse

 

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How To Pick Survival Guns For An Apocalypse | episode 121 

In this podcast, Mike and I talk about How To Pick Survival Guns For An Apocalypse. What guns would we both pick for a few different apocalypses? We begin with a general SHTF. Basically, the best survival guns that will work for any situation. There is no ultimate survival gun for every situation. We pick several guns to accomplish different goals. 

After we take care of the normal Survival Guns For An Apocalypse we dig into zombie apocalypse a little. What survival guns would differ from one SHTF to another? What is my top pick for a zombie gun? 

We only briefly touch on outlandish weapons. I talk about how great a rail gun could be for a zombie apocalypse. If one was built light enough with enough power to be useful. The problem with many of the homemade railguns is the trade off between the stopping power of the projectile and the battery weight to power it. If that ratio gets perfected railguns make great Survival Guns For An Apocalypse.

Mike dispels the myth that a crossbow makes a great weapon against zombies. Since you have to  reclaim your spent bolts makes it, not a great weapon. 

 

Topics

  • Clown Sightings
  • Survival Guns For An Apocalypse
  • 7 Ways To Deal With Food Anxiety
  • Mushroom Coffee
  • All Geared Up: My Body My Choice

 

 

Links

Clown sightings

7 ways to deal with food anxiety

Four Sigma Foods Mushroom Coffee

 

It’s Fall and that means Pumpkin Spice! Check Out My Ebook On Paleo Pumpkin  Recipes

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Want to hear yourself on the podcast? Call in with your questions at (615) 657-9104 and leave us a voice mail. 

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External Belt Gear Rigs

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USMC web gear

When the soldiers left the ships to fight in that big war to end all wars, the troops were all carrying a webbed web gear reviewbelt around the outside of their coats or jackets. This webbed belt carried a wide variety of accessory pouches for ammo, weapons magazines, medical supplies, a canteen, maybe a holster for a 1911 Colt .45 and other optional gear items. The external webbed belt kept the gear weight well distributed around the waist and easy to access. Some web gear units even had shoulder straps.

By Dr. John J. Woods, a contributing author to SHTFBlog & Survival Cache

Without carrying these immediate need items on the pants belt itself, the soldiers would not have their trousers weighted down or pulling excessively at the waist. Also this web belt could be quickly detached to set aside, however these rigs were usually carried at all times.

Fast Forward

Today, preppers and survivalists would do well to copy this gear carry mode themselves. In fact, such rigs are once again finding favor with outdoors enthusiasts from hunters, campers, hikers, and survivalists working around bug out camps. These external belt rigs can be customized to easily carry needed items that are used often or that can be reached or deployed quickly. With a little planning and thought, such an outside carry belt can be easily designed and outfitted. What gear should be added to such a rig? Make a list then narrow down the choices.

Also Read: Pistol Bug Out Bag For Under $500

Start with a heavy duty belt. Some still like and carry the old military surplus webbed belts and theseexternal_belt_gear_rig_pistol_knife_survival can work with the proper accessory attachments. Better yet is a thick leather belt that will not bend or bind with a load. I bought a double layered leather 1.5 inch wide belt recently off the rack at Cabela’s. It is super stiff, but will become more pliable with use. It has a good brass buckle. Now I see carry belts with steel lining inserts to add further strength.

Make sure whatever belt you get is large enough with enough adjustment holes to fit over outer clothing including light jackets as well as heavy coats. It may be best to wear a coat into the supplier or retailer to get a proper fit over the outer garment. Try on different styles to see what seems to work best.

Gear to Attach and Carry

So, what to hang on such a belt? The first thing that comes to mind is a sidearm weapon in a holster. This of course can be any handgun that you use confidently and have practiced with often. Likely you wear this outdoors, so if working on a farm, ranch, bug out camp or similar environment, you may want a handgun with substantial enough power to dispatch varmints or other intruders that might invade your space.

The most common choices that most will pick include a 9mm or a .45 ACP. Revolver shooters will pick a .357 Magnum (for which .38 Special ammo can be used), a 44 Magnum (with .44 Special ammo) or perhaps a .45 Long Colt. Obviously other choices are available, too. One of my personal favorites being the .41 Magnum in a Smith model 57 or 58.

Your handgun choice can be fitted to any number of holster types and styles that suit your uses best.external_belt_rig_holster_campknife Pick a heavy duty, durable holster with good gun retention. A safety strap is not a bad idea, because when working outdoors and such you do not want any likelihood of the firearm dropping out of the holster or being snatched out by a tree limb or vine or trespasser.

Next besides a weapon would probably be a good camp knife. The blade choice should be something between a hunting knife, general purpose Bowie, or heavy blade that can do some chopping along with regular field cutting tasks. An ESEE #6 comes to mind. If you want or need a pocket knife sized utility blade or two, then carry one of those, too in a smaller scabbard.

Read More: Survival Knife vs. Hatchet – A Question of Gear

Now comes all the options that preppers, farmers, or other outdoors workers might choose specifically for the kinds of field work they are performing. It might be a hatchet or small hand ax, a mini-first aid kit with meds, a canteen, compass, cell phone w/case, ammo pouch or pistol two-magazine pouch, bear spray, other accessory pouches (forestry tape, bright eyes, paracord, insect repellant, small digital camera, snacks and nabs, fire lighter, flashlight, multi-tool or other gear items). The balance in picking these items is not to unduly weigh down your belt rig.

Wearing the Rig

Where to wear or use this belt rig? Obviously, outdoors, but such a rig could be worn while working inside and survival web gearout around the bug out camp, farmhouse, barn, or other situation. It should be an easy take along when riding an ATV, UTV, or even a horse or tractor. The rig would be ideal for walking the property to inspect fences, gates, and for security observation.

The belt rig would be good for hiking trips, too, assuming such carry is permitted on public use trails. WWII soldiers found great utility in the everyday carry of their gear over their coats with a webbed belt. It spread the weight around the waist, but gave immediate access to needed items. Preppers and survivalists can adopt this type of rig for many uses performing a variety of tasks. Be creative in how you design your belt rig so it becomes a real go-to gear carry option.

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Jessica C

 

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Suppressed Prepper Rifles

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Best way to suppress a rifle

Ricky Bryant has not used a regular hunting rifle for years.  By regular he means a standard hunting rifle with a factory barrel.  best rifle suppressorsWhy?  Because Bryant of Clinton, Mississippi is owner and operator of BMS Machine short for Bryant’s Machine Shop on Highway 80 East in Clinton.  What Ricky probably does not realize is that his shop is making an excellent rifle for prepping and survival work.  Quiet, mean, and effective.

By Dr. John J. Woods, a contributing author to SHTFBlog & Survival Cache

Among all the many machined parts for multiple industrial applications that BMS manufacturers in house, Ricky and his team including his mom and dad that work in the business also makes firearm suppressors for all types of firearms.  Oh, they also make a customized line of AR rifles and rimfires for sport shooting, self-defense, hunting and of course, prepping.

Suppressor Hunting for Survival Foraging

“We got into hunting with suppressed or “silenced” rifles a number of years ago.  We designed our own custombest_rifle_suppressor suppressors which are devices that screw mount onto the muzzle of an appropriate rifle.  A suppressor actually muffles the muzzle blast sound of a centerfire or rimfire firearm, but many people mistakenly call them a silencer.  We make suppressors”, says Ricky Bryant.

“Several of my hunting buddies and me started hog hunting and this is much easier with suppressed rifles.  We hunt at night with thermal and night vision gear.  Using a suppressed rifle allows us to shoot multiple targets often without disturbing the whole group of pigs.  If you were using a regular rifle, after one shot, every pig in the field would be gone in a flash,” stated Bryant.  All of the principles that Ricky discusses are just as applicable to prep survival, too.

Related: The AR-15 Discreet Carry Kit

“Over time we have gained a reputation for dispensing with wild hogs, and now landowners are contacting us to help thin their pig populations.  It is amazing the damage a group of hogs can do to a field crop or a hay pasture.  They just plow it up to the point that a farmer or landowner cannot even drive over the land.  We enjoy taking care of those problems.”

Bryant Prepping ARs

Bryant says, “My hunting crew is really into using AR rifles for hunting.  While we primarily started hunting hogs, best_ar_suppressornow we make rifles for deer hunting, and even rimfire models for small game, pest control and just general fun shooting.” “We started displaying at outdoor shows and various venues, and the interest in our rifles has really expanded.  Virtually every rifle we make is a customized model detailed out by the buyer.  Sure, we have standard models for sale now, but the real fun part is making a rifle that fits exactly what the shooter wants.”

“Our ARs come with dozens of options including choices for lower and upper units decked out especially for the customer.  We offer a wide variety of handguard types, materials, textures, and profile.  We have a selection of custom color coatings that can be anything from matte black, camouflage to an American flag red, white, and blue, if that is what the customer wants.  We can do custom engraving, and a customer can even specify a custom serial number that will be registered and unique to that one rifle only.”

Also Check Out: Do You Really Need An AR-15

While visiting the BMS shop I was able to see and handle a wide selection of display models that Ricky keeps on hand.  It is amazing the custom details a shooter or hunter can get in an AR rifle or a rimfire like a Ruger 10-22.  Any of BMS’s rifles can be suppressed or come as regular stock barreled rifles.  The choices are endless.

Suppressed Hunting Cartridges

“We offer a pretty wide selection of AR rifle chamber choices, but of course we have our favorites after hunting with these rifles for years now.  The most common chamber caliber choices we offer includes the ever popular .223 or 5.56, and the .22-250 for varmint and predator hunting,” Bryant explained   “For hog and even deer hunting we chamber the 300 AAC or Blackout as it is known in some circles.  This chamber can be made up for either a suppressed or regular barrel for different types of hunting.  The same is true for the 6.8 SPC, which is one of my personal favorites.  The 6.8 is devastating on pigs, and it is a good over all choice for deer hunting as well under regular hunting conditions.  We also make AR rifle platforms for the larger .308 Winchester for those hunters that want more power and knock down energy.”

Getting A Suppressor Rifle

According to Bryant, “We help the customer through the whole process of designing their rifle and the suppressor they want, then we help with the processing of the federal BATF paperwork application required to legally own a suppressed firearm.  Many people do not know that owning a suppressed rifle is even legal, but it is.”  Check with your local state laws.  “Our suppressors cost about $650 depending on what features the customer wants.  Then they pay a $200 NFA (National Firearms Act) fee to obtain the suppressor owner permit.

We advise suppressor owners to set up a legal trust for the permit application and we walk them through that suppressors_silencers_guns_prepperprocess as well.  Once the permit is received back from the BATF, then we can build the suppressor and legally install it on the customer’s rifle and they are ready to go,” says Bryant.  If you think hunting or shooting a suppressed rifle especially a custom AR of your own design sounds exciting, then check out the BMS web site or give Ricky a call at the number listed.  If you can dream it up, Ricky and his team can build it.

Read More: Flash Suppressor and Muzzle Break Options

Obviously, the hunting applications of a suppressed rifle are beneficial in so many ways, but there is more to it for preppers.  During a SHTF and your team is on lock down at home or off to an alternative site, a quiet suppressed rifle has real advantages.  There are many times when you want to keep your location a secret and what better way if you have to fire upon targets 4-footed, or two.  A suppressed rifle make this possible.

 

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Poll: ‘House-To-House’ Gun ‘Confiscation’ Proposal Leads By Wide Margin In California

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Poll: ‘House-To-House' Gun 'Confiscation’ Proposal Leads By Wide Margin In California

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LOS ANGELES – A California ballot initiative that opponents claim would lead to house-to-house gun confiscation leads in a statewide survey among registered voters.

Proposition 63, as it is called, is winning 64-28 percent, according to the USC Dornsife/Los Angeles Times poll of 1,879 registered voters conducted by SurveyMonkey.

The proposition would ban magazines larger than 10 rounds. It also would:

  • Require ammunition sales be made through licensed vendors.
  • Require lost or stolen guns or ammo be reported to police.
  • Require buyers pass a background check prior to purchasing ammunition.

“Millions of legal magazines will need to be sold out-of-state, taken out-of-state, or seized by law enforcement,” according to the Coalition for Civil Liberties, which opposes Proposition 63.

Be Prepared. Learn The Best Ways To Hide Your Guns.

Many legal firearms will only operate with “magazines that can hold more than 10 rounds, making them effectively illegal,” the coalition noted.

“This backdoor gun ban is not just on future sales, but forces you to surrender your existing private property to law enforcement,” it added.

The coalition asserted that Proposition 63, if passed, will lead to “house-to-house confiscation” of guns and magazines.

According to the text of the proposed law, anyone who is caught possessing an illegal magazine can be jailed for up to one year. Current owners of such magazines have three choices, according to the text: 1) remove it from the state, 2) sell it to a licensed dealer, or 3) surrender it to police “for destruction.”

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The Ruger Vaquero: The Modern-Day Cowboy Revolver You Won’t Forget

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The Ruger Vaquero: The Modern-Day Cowboy Revolver

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The Ruger Vaquero was introduced in 1993 by Sturm, Ruger & Company for the fast-growing sport of cowboy action shooting. This single-action, six-shot revolver was based on an earlier model that Ruger had introduced in 1955, the Blackhawk. The Blackhawk, in turn, was a modernized version of the colt single action Army revolver of 1873. Blackhawks had been allowed in the “modern” category of cowboy action shooting, as the revolvers were equipped with adjustable sights, but these sights kept the revolvers out of the general categories.

The Vaquero was made with fixed sights, similar to the Colt. The lower price point and the overall quality of the revolver appealed to shooters who either did not want to take an expensive (and possibly antique) firearm into a match or those who were not satisfied with the quality of imported Colt “clones” that were on the market.

Ruger incorporated a transfer bar in the Vaquero for safety reasons. Colt Single Action Army revolvers had an inherent safety problem: With the cylinder fully loaded, the fixed firing pin attached to the hammer rests on the primer of a loaded round. Dropping or striking a revolver loaded in this manner can cause it to discharge, which is why traditionally, Colt SAAs are loaded with five rounds and the hammer resting on an empty chamber. Ruger had addressed the issue in 1973 on the Blackhawk and Single six revolvers by the addition of a transfer bar, which makes it safe for a shooter to carry six rounds in his revolver without a safety concern.

Two finishes are available: stainless steel and blue, with an imitation color case-hardened frame.  This second option was a chemical treatment which gave the look of the color case hardening found on the original Colt revolvers.

Be Prepared. Learn The Best Ways To Hide Your Guns.

Ruger offered the revolvers in three barrel lengths: 7 1⁄2 inch, 5 1⁄2 inch and 4 5⁄8 inch, which were similar to the three most common barrel lengths offered by Colt. Ruger initially offered the Vaquero in 45 Colt and later in 357 Magnum/38 Special, 44 Magnum/44 Special, and 44-40 Winchester (44 WCF).

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In 1998, some Vaqueros began shipping with faux ivory grips and engraving complete with gold inlay. In 1999, a limited run of 1,000 Vaqueros was offered by Ruger through a distributor. These revolvers featured a 3 ½-inch barrel and a shortened ejector rod. They were called the “Sheriff’s Model,” and half of these revolvers were stainless and the other half finished in blue. In 2005, this was added as a standard option to the catalog.

Ruger has offered three grip frame shapes in the past: the standard, the Bisley and the Bird’s head. The standard or plow handle is shaped similar to the traditional Colt Single Action Army. The Bisley has a shape based upon the Bisley Colt Single Action Army, which was designed as a target revolver. The Bird’s head recreates the unique shape of Colt’s double-action Lightning and Thunderer models of 1877 in an improved contour.

Aficionados of cowboy action shooting and single-action revolvers in general bought the Vaquero in droves. Because of the larger frame and the quality of the steel used, these revolvers could fire loads of higher pressures than the Colt Single Action Army and in some instances, these revolvers caught on in handgun hunting circles.

However, the larger and heavier guns received some detraction from purists of the sport of cowboy action shooting. Additionally, the Ruger “warning label” which appeared on the left side of the barrel cautioning the shooter to consult the owner’s manual was visually unattractive to many shooters. Ruger addressed these concerns in 2005 by introducing the “New Vaquero.” This version incorporated a smaller frame, making it closer in weight to the Colt Single Action Army and able to accept the two-piece grip panels made for the Colt. Ruger moved the “Warning label” to the underside of the barrel, making the revolver more appealing to the eye. The New Vaquero is offered in .45 Colt and .357 Magnum/.38 Special and is not meant for the heavier loads that the original model could fire.

My preference is for the original Vaquero due to its strength. With proper loads and the correct bullet, the 45 Colt is capable of taking any game animal in North America. I don’t feel under gunned when packing one for protection, either, and unlike the original Colt Single Action Army, you can load all six chambers in the Ruger.

Have you shot a Vaquero? Which model do you prefer? Share your thoughts in the section below:

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5 ‘Vehicle Carry’ Carbines That Store Easily … And Will Keep You Safe

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5 ‘Vehicle Carry’ Carbines That Store Easily … And Will Keep You Safe

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Let me start by saying that it is your responsibility to know the gun laws of your state and how those laws relate to carrying a firearm in your vehicle. If in doubt, do your research!

For the purposes of this article, I define a carbine as a short rifle with an 18-inch or shorter barrel. The stock may be fixed, collapsible or of folding design. I do not limit this discussion only to semi-auto actions, as you soon will discover.

So why carry a carbine in a vehicle? Because anything I can do with a handgun I can do better with a short rifle. Another reason: I just plain admire and love carbines.

In a vehicle, I have limited space in which to move. If I must fight or defend myself from within or around my mode of transportation, the ability to move with ease can become challenging with all but pistol or carbine. I give myself a huge advantage with the extended barrel length, stock weld to my shoulder and sight radius the carbine offers. Plus, in most cases there is a greater distance and accuracy capability in part due to the high velocity rifle cartridges of most carbines.

There are countless applications for a carbine when it comes to a survival situation. So in my estimation, the carbine has a place in every single vehicle I own. I have carried a carbine for decades while traveling roadways in this country. (I currently reside in a western state that has no law prohibiting a long gun, loaded and accessible, inside the car.)

With all the above in mind, let’s take a look at some possible choices for carbine carry in a vehicle.

1. Trapper model lever action.

Between various manufacturers (Winchester, Henry and Rossi, to mention a few), there are many caliber choices here, including the 357 and 44 Magnum. My choice in the past was the old, trusted 30-30. In the short Trapper model (16-inch barrel), this little lever gun is ideal for carry inside a vehicle. It is also very flat-sided, making it quite simple to position between the seats for easy access. I carried this carbine many miles in this manner, and still do on occasion. In 30-30, it’s an effective cartridge out to around 200-300 yards. If there is a downside to this package, it’s the tubular magazine capacity of five rounds in the 30-30 cartridge.

2. AR platform pistol

Here I am speaking of such platforms like the Sig P516 with the “arm brace.” In the 10-inch barrel, chambered in 5.56, this platform provides wonderful in-vehicle access and mobility while still allowing the shooter to have a point of contact to the shoulder if the need arises. While there have been some discussions as to the legality of this pistol being fired from the shoulder like a carbine, in an immediate threat environment I will opt to do what needs to be done.

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5 ‘Vehicle Carry’ Carbines That Store Easily … And Will Keep You Safe

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The “pistol” does come with an ATF compliant letter stating the arm brace is for arm support to the pistol, thereby not requiring a NFA permit due to the short barrel length. There are numerous platforms available that allow for this shortened barrel in conjunction with a non-traditional stock or “pistol brace.” The ability to use a standard 20-, 30- or even 40-round magazine makes these systems ideal for vehicle carry. My condolences to citizens of those states who are under such extreme government regulation that you are not allowed standard magazines for your own defense!

3. M1 30 carbine

This carbine platform has been around since WWII. With an 18-inch barrel and magazine capacity of 15 or 30 rounds, this 30-caliber semi-auto has a muzzle velocity of about 1,990 feet per second. It has seen military and police service around the world. While perhaps not the most ideal cartridge, it certainly fits the bill for a quick access carbine inside a vehicle and is quiet enjoyable to shoot.

4. Kel-Tec Sub2000

Moving into a pistol cartridge in a short carbine (16.25-inch barrel), it would be hard to argue of the maneuverability and ease of access this little package offers. Standard offering is 9mm and 40 S&W. The Sub-2000 uses Glock magazines and consequently will accept the extended 33-round 9mm and the 22-round 40 S&W versions. Another handy feature is the ability of this carbine to fold in half for extreme covert carry. It’s very easily carried between the seat and console right next to you while driving.

5. Kel-Tec CMR-30

Another innovative offering from Kel-Tec is the CMR-30 in 22 Magnum (16-inch barrel). This hot little rim-fire cartridge has been used over the years for everything from bringing in the camp meat to self-defense. I like the CMR-30 because the stock system telescopes flush with the back of the receiver. It comes standard with a 30-round box magazine. Aside from a great vehicle carry gun, if you are thinking survival, couple this with the Kel-Tec PMR-30, the accompanying pistol that takes the same mag, and you have an excellent survival package.

As I previously stated, this is a short list of carbine options available. I do have personal experience with each of the above listed platforms and know they carry well inside a vehicle. Bottom line: Carbine carry in my everyday transportation is the rule, not the exception.

What would you add to the list? Delete from it? Share your firearm advice in the section below:

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Converting .223 rifle to .300 Blackout in 2 Steps: Part 1

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convert 556 to 300 blackout

The .300 Blackout is an effective round that bridges some of the wide gap between a .223 and a .308 as well as allowing an AR15 best ar15platform rifle to encroach on the ballistics territory of the venerable AK 47.  Plus the 300 BLK has the benefit of easily going subsonic making it about as quiet as possible given the mechanical noise of operating a rifle’s action.  Adding to the quiet excitement is that the difference between a traditional AR15 in .223/5.56 and one in 300 BLK is little more than a barrel swap. That’s right, everything else might be interchangeable between the two.

By Doc Montana, a contributing author of Survival Cache and SHTFBlog

Chicken or Egg?

Wildcat cartridges can successfully address niche ammo needs, but unless the specific cartridge was blessed by Sammy 300 blackout conversion(properly SAAMI or Sporting Arms and Ammunition Manufacturers’ Institute), the cartridge would not get the widespread support needed to be taken seriously by the big gun and ammo manufacturers let alone the general shooting public.  AAC, or the Advanced Armament Corporation in collaboration with Remington Defense ironed out the kinks in the wildcat .300 Whisper cartridge getting formal SAAMI joy in 2011 which is why the .300 Blackout still has that new car smell.

The .300 Blackout is a 30 caliber solution that grew from a set of needs not the least of which included the use of existing AR-style magazines while maintaining the same mag capacity, the use of M4-style platform uppers and lowers; being ballistically similar to the AK 47 round of 7.62mm x 39mm, and be a higher-mass barrier-penetrating bullet while maintaining low recoil and high performance through short suppressed barrels. Oh, and best of all, easily running both supersonic and subsonic in the same rifle with absolutely no change in the gun. In fact, it is this latter capability that 300 BLK owners find most attractive. So the .300 Blackout can drop a deer at 200 yards, or lob 30-cal lead downrange with little more noise than a cycling bolt.

AK 47 rifles are near impossible to run subsonic due to the gas system. And they are certainly not able to interchange between supersonic and subsonic on the fly. Major adjustments and tuning would be needed. In the case of the .300 Blackout, it is a cartridge deliberately made to run flawlessly in an AR rifle in both subsonic and supersonic. In fact, the high bullet weight of the subsonic 300 BLK ammo is not just to slow down the bullet (F=MA in Newtonian physics) but also to provide enough of an equal and opposite force to cycle a traditional AR bolt and buffer (Newton’s Third Law of Motion).

While the initial ballistics of a 300 BLK running subsonic are very similar to a .45 ACP, the bullet shape of a .300 Blackout provides a much better trajectory and deeper penetration. A 220 grain 45 caliber slug flying out the pipe of a handgun designed prior to 1911 is much like a forty-five caliber musket ball. On the other hand the .300 Blackout behaves more like a 7.62×39 round causing death hundreds of yards away. A .45 ACP will bounce off cowhide at distance while the 300 BLK should still shatter bone.

Walmart Test

300 BLK ammo in the supersonic variety did pass my Walmart test.  That means it is sitting on the shelf at the local Walmart right switching from 556 to 300 blackoutnow. However, I was unable to locate any subsonic .300 Blackout ammo at the any nearby Walmarts.  Of course subsonic 300 BLK ammo was available at almost every gun store and big box sporting goods store I checked so the stuff is common.  And the Walmart gun clerk did say they’ve had 300 BLK subsonic ammo in stock before, but it was elusive as 500 round bricks of .22 long rifle.

Related: 10 Basic Tools For Your Armorer Kit

The ammo choices for 300 BLK in supersonic was varied across price and performance.  I found plenty of boxes of 20 from $16 all the way up to almost $50.  Subsonic rounds hovered around $20-$25 and there was rarely more than one choice at any given store.

Presto Change-o

Changing a .223 AR 15 into a .300 Blackout can be as simple as swapping barrels.  The complete upper, lower, magazines and gas 300 Blackout vs .223system might work just fine with the 300 BLK. Usually there are a couple other parts that get changed out as well, but truly in a nutshell, it is just a barrel switch.  So a best-case conversion to turn your .223 AR into a .300 Blackout is 1) remove your .223 barrel, and 2) install a 300 BLK barrel.

Tool Side

Changing barrels on your standard direct impingement AR is fairly straightforward, but does require some tools. The undeniable magpul armorers wrenchtool is a barrel wrench which is usually part of a multi-function armorers tool like the Magpul Armorer’s Wrench.  But in order to turn the barrel nut, you must remove the gas tube. And in order to remove the gas tube, you will need to remove the gas tube cross pin using a 5/32nds punch (gently push it out from left to right).

With the gas tube removed, you can unwind the barrel nut freeing the barrel from the upper receiver. You can reuse the gas tube if its in good shape and the right length, and maybe even reuse the gas block as well assuming it works with your barrel and handguard.  In my case, I opted for a new low profile gas block because I am going from a Magpul MOE polymer handguard mounted on a 5.56 barrel with an A2 (triangular) front post.  The Midwest Industries free-floating handguard I’ll be shrouding the 300 BLK barrel with will need a new gas block. So it was Yankee Hill to the rescue.

Also Read: How To Trick Out A Cheap AR15

Backing up for a minute, there is an essential tool that makes barrel removal and installation every so much easier and that is an converting a 556 rifleupper receiver vise block. The vise block is a blockish clamp that wraps the upper receiver like a glove allowing the whole unit to be clamped in a vise without concern of damaging or warping your upper receiver. Add a torque wrench to round out your toolset and you’re as good as done.

Grunt Work

The .300 Blackout went into military service in July of 2015 when the Netherland’s Dutch Convert 300 BLKMaritime Special Operations Force (NL-MARSOF) ordered 195 carbines chambered in 300 BLK.  According to an uncited Wikipedia article on the .300 Blackout, it has an effective supersonic combat range of about 500 yards. Flying subsonic, 200 yards is pushing the limits of effectiveness outside of threats made of paper.  Now before anyone goes all sniper on me, most folks, and let’s be honest here, are not able to shoot reliably to 500 yards even under ideal conditions. In fact, 200 yards is a very reasonable and ethical hunting distance. In my particular case, I intend on hunting with this rifle in thick woods where a 50 yard or less shot is common. I grew up hunting in such places with a Winchester Model 94 30-30 which is an excellent “brush gun” as we liked to call them. Iron sights were plenty good at these distances.

I also intend to hunt with a suppressor, or silencer if you want to retain the original name that its inventor Hiram Maxim called them back in 1902; the “Maxim Silencer” to be exact. On a side note, a movie in 1946 was made about Hiram’s life and titled “So Goes My Love.” But reading about the movie, it doesn’t sound like there is any gunplay in it, let alone any silenced fire.

Quiet Down

Factory loads of 300 BLK come in several popular bullet weights. In general, those bullets over 200 grains slide down the pipe How to convert to 300 Blackoutunder the 1100 feet per second speed of sound while anything lighter breaks the sound barrier with a boom. Since most of the powder is burned within the first nine inches of barrel, near total performance can be achieved in very short barrels. To avoid paperwork and a tax stamp and months of delay, I opted for a 16” barrel literally off the shelf at a local gun store.

I already had a SilencerCo Omega suppressor so adding a can to this build was a no-brainer. In fact, that Omega is most of the reason I went down the 300 BLK road in the first place. A suppressed subsonic .300 Blackout literally is only as loud as the bolt cycling and bullet impacting.

Related: Firearms Maintenance When SHTF

All this is not without a problem. And it’s potentially a big one. A .223 or 5.56 round will cycle into a 300 BLK barrel, and possibly 300 BLKthe reverse is true. This means you have to practice proper ammo management. At no time can you risk mixing up or mixing together your mags or your ammo.

There are various solutions and products to keep your ammo act together. The Blackout Band is a silicon bracelet you wrap around your 300 BLK mags. Some folks run different colored mags, while others mark their mags in personal ways. I chose to dedicate Magpul’s sand colored mags to my .300 Blackout with the intent to dye them later to a more fun and useful color. So at the moment, white mags for the Blackout. No exceptions. There is an ever growing number of tales where someone had a loose 300 BLK round that found it’s way into a .223 mag only to blow the gun apart when it was stripped off the top of the mag by the bolt and the trigger was pulled.

And as I noted in my review of the Magpul D-60 drum magazine, not all ammo containers for the .223/5.56 platform are completely interchangeable. In fact, some are downright dangerous. But since .300 Blackout ammo is easily twice to three times the price of .223 rounds at a minimum, getting sloppy with Blackout ammo shouldn’t be a popular problem.

Survival Apps

It should go without saying that a 30 caliber subsonic suppressed round with a 200 meter range should have endless uses. Hunting is obvious as is protection. But let’s put a finer point on that protection thing. A bolt cycling is noisy but only within a very limited sound radius. Add snow or thick brush or trees and the noise of a buffer spring boinging and bolt clanking will not travel far. And the thump of bullet impact is evidence that it’s too late to do anything about it.  Unfortunately, the 30 caliber bullet leaving the muzzle under the speed of sound drops like a mountain pass after a hundred yards, and like a double-black diamond ski slope at 200 yards. Beyond that it’s ballistics curve would be a boat anchor.

The Downside of Loud

And speaking of sound suppression, if you ever plan on popping off a round indoors, you will want to minimize the bang or risk convert from 5.56 to .300 BLKtemporary disorientation and permanent hearing damage. Sorry to be a buzzkill here, but I do have trouble taking seriously anyone who plans on using a short-barreled AR or AR pistol with spiked muzzle brake as a home defense weapon. One boom and it’s all over for most involved. Better get that first shot right because you will be too stunned for a follow up shot. Kind of like flash-banging yourself and loved ones.

Also Read: Review of the Glock 42

Just as a gas-powered generator makes an unwanted and unavoidable racket, and a campfire makes unwanted smoke and smell, firearms make unwanted noise. So having a silent solution with more umph than a pistol is a good thing. And when things do go noisy, you have a 500 yard solution at your index finger’s fingertip.

Given that the 300 BLK is still young enough to have spots it’s not surprising that reloading your own brand is the go-to option for the more-than-curious. There are limited factory ammo options for subsonic bullet designs often leaving the big game hunter to settle for either throwing projectiles faster than sound or launching barely hollow-pointed varmint rounds downrange to settle the score. But the big news here is that there is actually a selection of subsonic 300 BLK ammo on the shelves of the big boxes. So something’s going in the right direction these days.

Let’s see how this all works out. Stay tuned for Part 2.
All photos by Doc Montana

This article is for informational purposes only, please consult a gunsmith before you make any changes to your rifle.
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The Five 12-Gauge Loads Every Homesteader Should Own

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The Five 12-Gauge Loads Every Homesteader Should Own

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The 12-gauge shotgun is one of the most common, most versatile firearms a person can own. The right shotgun can be used for everything from survival hunting to protecting the garden from critters to home defense.

The wide variety of ammo, ranging from powerful slugs to lightweight small game loads, is what makes this weapon so useful, and it should be in the arsenal of any homesteader or survivalist. But having the gun is only half the battle; you need to have the right ammo, and more importantly, the right assortment of ammo. With these five best loads, you will be ready for anything that happens on the homestead.

1. Slugs

Perhaps one of the most fearsome loads you can shoot from a shotgun, heavy slugs turn your shotgun into an oversized smoothbore musket. If you have a rifled slug barrel, you gain increased accuracy and a slight increase in range. Even with a regular smooth barrel, you can reliably take shots out to 75 yards or so. There are a great many slugs, ranging from the traditional rifled slug — contrary to popular opinion, the rifling doesn’t aid in accuracy, but merely helps size the slug through various choke sizes — to fancy copper and polymer creations. (Don’t shoot slugs through very tight chokes, because it decreases accuracy and can in rare instances blow up your gun.) One-ounce rifled slugs will do nearly all you want to do. The shotgun is a simple weapon; keep your ammo simple as well.

2. 00 buck

Packing roughly nine .33 caliber pellets into a shell (more with long magnum loads), this is the workhorse of self-defense and hunting ammo. Suitable as the name implies for deer hunting, and absolutely brutal in combat and self-defense, 2 ¾-inch 00 buck is a standard military and police load, as well as a go-to round for home defense.

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While not some magical burst of all-destroying lead, the 00 buck load will drop almost any game animal in the Lower 48 and pretty much any two-legged predator in its tracks. The smart homesteader will keep this close at hand for big game hunting and personal protection.

3. #4 buckshot

Used in the Vietnam War by the Navy Seals and others for its impressive ability to cut through heavy foliage and still drop a target, this is somewhat obscure but highly effective round. Delivering about 27 .24 caliber pellets, this cloud of high velocity lead is proven for home defense or hunting. This is my go-to choice for home defense, because I live in a close urban area, and I’d rather have smaller pellets than larger ones punching through my walls in case of a miss or near miss. Either way, my way of thinking is if it was good enough for the jungles of Vietnam, it’s good enough for the jungles of urban America. Shoot a couple of boxes and see if you aren’t convinced, as well.

4. Birdshot

There are several sizes, and you should probably have some of each. Use the smaller stuff on smaller game and the larger stuff when you need some reach-out-and-touch something. Ranging from the smaller #6 to the somewhat larger #8, birdshot is cheap, reliable and effective. As a bonus, it’s great for casual target shooting, teaching people how to shoot, and practicing with clay pigeons.

5. Non-toxic shot

In most places it is illegal to hunt migratory waterfowl with lead shot, and non-toxic shot is the next-best thing. Responsible hunters know that using non-toxic shot when hunting aids conservation and protects the wildlife we all enjoy. While it can be a bit more expensive than traditional lead shot, non-toxic shot is a must-have round if you hunt duck or geese, or simply want to stop filling your favorite hunting areas with toxic to wildlife lead. We are stewards of nature and owe it to ourselves and our children to hunt responsibly and ethically. Put some non-toxic shot aside, even if you aren’t required to use it. The land you keep clean may be your own.

Final Thoughts

My home-defense shotgun is loaded with #4 buckshot, and I’ve got ammo cans stuffed full of all sorts of 12-gauge ammo. It’s a mass-produced commodity and I’m not shy about grabbing boxes and cases when they turn up cheap. It is easy to put together the right collection of 12-gauge shells for your needs, and at a fairly low cost. Even heavy slugs and 00 buckshot can be had for less than a dollar a round, and if you handload, even cheaper. Having a 12 gauge is like owning five or six different guns, and all you have to do is change the load you are shooting. Much ink has been spilled over the notion of the “one universal gun” that can do everything, and I’d have to say based off of just these five simple types of shells, the 12-gauge shotgun isn’t too far from that mark.

Do you agree? Disagree? Share your thoughts in the section below: 

Pump Shotguns Have One BIG Advantage Over Other Shotguns. Read More Here.

Prepper Pocket Pistols

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survival pistol

The essential idea behind a pocket pistol is to carry it concealed on your person in the event of immediate need.  During an active Best self defense pistolSHTF event, a prepper-survivalists may have multiple opportunities to engage their pocket pistol for a wide variety of reasons.  It might be needed to get out of the office and home or out of the driveway to get on the road toward your Bug Out destination.  It may be needed to thwart a threat at the front door or in the parking lot.

By Dr. John J. Woods, a contributing author to SHTFBlog & Survival Cache

When things go south during a natural or unnatural event, self-defense and family/team protection can quickly become a top priority.   For this reason, a pocket pistol has to be chosen very carefully with deliberate intents in mind at all times.  A pocket pistol has to be small enough to be carried easily, but it must be retrieved quickly to put into play.  Then it has to carry enough power to be an effective defensive threat.  The shooter has to be trained and proficient in doing this.

Pocket Power

The first round of the debate starts with the size of the hole in the end of the muzzle.  The primary contenders are the .380 ACP, best concealed carry ammo.38 Special, 9mm, and maybe with a select few shooters, the .45 ACP.  See, I have already stepped on somebody’s toe by not mentioning this round or another such as the .40 Cal.  Some 10mm fans might be offended.  And if you are just getting into shooting handguns, start with the .22 rimfire from the get go, but then move up.  Skip the rimfire for self-defense as it just has too many limitations for serious protection work.

Related: Buying SHTF Ammo

The bottom line here is to choose a caliber with which you are confident in using and in a best concealed carry ammohandgun you can shoot well.  Any one in this first list will perform well in the right hands of a properly trained and experienced shooter.  The days are gone when the .380 and the .38 Special were considered wimps.  Even the 9mm was slighted not all that long ago.  Forget that.  Ammunition manufacturers have stepped up the game with new highly potent and accurate self-defense loads new on the market.  Many new offerings by Hornady, Remington, Winchester, Federal and others have laid to rest the arguments about these rounds being too weak for self-defense protection.  Make your choice.

Gun Choices

To simplify things I generically used the term “pistol” when I am really talking about both semi-auto pistols and revolvers as well. best concealed carry pocket pistol Believe it or not, a good revolver in the hands of a competent and confident shooter becomes an awesome defensive combination.  The “pistol” is certainly a popular choice but by no means the only one or even the best one in every instance.

Related: A Case For The Revolver

A top of the line revolver such as many by Smith and Wesson, Ruger, Charter Arms, Taurus, and a few select others are good choices for prepper pocket pistols.  An intriguing new revolver that I have yet to see or handle is the Kimber K6s Stainless in .357 Magnum, which of course can handle .38 Specials including hearty +P loads.  This ought to be a grand pocket pistol, pricey, but extremely well made as all Kimber’s are.

Pistol wise there are just so many choices, the average or new prepper to the horse race is going to quickly get bogged down in decision-making over features, fit, grip, handling, magazine loading, pointing, slide cycling, sight alignment, safety mechanisms, weight, size, carry and concealment considerations.  These are a lot of things to think about when picking out a good pocket pistol.  Among the competitive leading makers of pocket pistols, you have to look at the Glock 42 and 43, the Ruger models LC9 and LCP, several from S&W including the Bodyguard and their 9mm series.

Related: 10 Tips For Concealed Carry

Remington has out a new .380 pistol to look at in earnest.  Others worthy of a look include the Kimber Micro Pistols, the Solo, Ultra models, and some of the downsized 1911 versions.  In this marketplace, there is no shortage at all of models, brands, and versions to examine for use as pocket pistols.

The Wrap

In the selection process, canvas internet recommendations from noted sources like Survival Cache.  Check with reputable gun best pocket pistoldealers, and nose around at shooting ranges, and gun shows.  Handle and inspect as many different gun models as you can get your hands on.  Shop where the inventories are large, selections and prices are competitive.  If you know a cop, then ask them their opinions as well as other preppers and survivalists.  Gather all the information you can as you make your choice or choices.

The pocket pistol profile is a lightweight, small, 2-4 inch barreled handgun designed to be easily carried actually in the pocket or in an IWB (inside waist band) or OWB (outside waist band) holster.  It has to ready to be drawn quickly and deployed into action at a moment’s notice.  Besides picking the right gun in the right caliber for you, proceed to knowing your gun.  Learn it, clean it, take it apart, and get intimate with it.  Spend a lot of quality time on the shooting range running it through the paces.  Shoot your new gun at realistic confrontational distances.

Also Read: Gum Creek Vehicle Pistol Mount Review

Forget 50 yards.  Concentrate on 7 feet to ten yards.  Punch those paper plates in the center.  Practice quick reloads with a fresh magazine or a 5/6-round speed loader.  This is a learned talent all its own that requires lots of practice to perform smoothly and securely.  Practice, too, withdrawing your pistol from your pocket and carry holsters.  Dress up in the role of concealed carry to see how all that works out.  Get in and out of your vehicles to test those moves.  It all takes practice.  Just keep at it.

Get your concealed carry permit so you’ll be legal.  Start to tote your pocket pistol on a regular basis.  Carry it around some to get used to the weight, feel and tug of it on your body.  At home or discretely work with drawing your pocket handgun in practice, unloaded of course.  Learn that sight plane down the barrel and pointing that muzzle nose to the target.  If you have to depart your office, home, or vehicle during a SHTF event of any kind, you are going to want some measure of protection.  A pocket pistol can help fill that role.  Make your selection with earnest consideration, then move full forward to learning to use it effectively.  It could save your life or the lives of family members, a prep team, or others caught exposed.

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Revolver Or Semi-Auto For EDC? — A Policeman’s Perspective

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Revolver Or Semi-Auto For EDC? – A Policeman’s Perspective

Image source: TheFiringLine.com

The choices for an everyday carry (EDC) handgun are endless. Handgun make, model, caliber and double stack vs. single stack are but a few of the questions you will need to answer if you are new to EDC.

And then there is the age-old question: Do I stick with a time-tested revolver or move into the modern era of semi-auto handguns? Below are some of the key considerations when choosing between these two platforms. (My commentary here is for practical EDC guns, and not for competition or hunting.)

Revolvers

I started my career in law enforcement in 1985. At that time in New Mexico, very few law enforcement agencies utilized semi-auto for patrol officers. If the semi-auto was carried by law enforcement in those days, it was almost always the classic 45 ACP 1911.

Therefore, I began my journey of handgun training for defensive purposes with an S&W Revolver in 357 Magnum. (The 44 Magnum was carried by some.) Also at the time, little consideration was given to things like recoil and the fit of the gun to an officer’s hand; if you were a cop you qualified on what they told you and either passed or failed. So, I learned the revolver well, to include speed and tactical reloads and distance shooting. Very few of these skills are adopted today by the average person carrying a revolver, because so few carry one, or they choose not to train.

As I see it, there is a time and place for this action type. I have used almost every well-known make and model of revolver that’s commonly seen today. Let’s take a look at the pluses and minuses.

The Pros

Reliability: Although malfunctions can occur, the revolver is generally very reliable and durable for EDC.

Concealability: Select a small frame, i.e., a 2.5- to 3-inch barrel, and this gun can be easily and effectively concealed.

Be Prepared. Learn The Best Ways To Hide Your Guns.

Weight: With the advent of lighter materials being used for small frame revolvers, weight is seldom an arguing point.

Caliber offerings: The old standby 38 Special is a classic and probably the most common. But many of the rimless semi-auto offerings are now available, including 32, 9mm, 40 S&W, and 45 ACP. Charter Arms now offers a revolver, called the Pitbull, that works with rimless calibers without the use of moon clips.

Affordability: Many well-known companies are making revolvers. Selections start in the $350 range.

The Cons

concealed_gunReduced round capacity: The average carry revolver has a capacity of five to six rounds. Will you carry a speed loader or a speed strip?

Trigger pull: For some, a double-action trigger pull on a revolver is a drawback. With the average double action coming in around at 12-pounds plus, it can be a challenge for folks with grip strength challenges. I recommend only firing a revolver in double action for defensive purposes, even though many folks want to “cock the hammer.” As most of you know, some revolvers have the hammer bobbed or shrouded where you are unable to cock it.

Short sight radius: There’s little room for error when shooting snub-nosed revolvers past three to five yards. In addition, rear sights are often very minimal on small revolvers.

Semi-Autos

Somewhere around 1990, I was allowed to start carrying a semi-auto handgun for on-duty purposes as a law enforcement officer. My first was a Sig Sauer P220, in 45 ACP. Over the years I have carried everything from 1911s to Smith & Wessons and Glocks (various models of both). Calibers I have carried for law enforcement purposes have ranged from 32 auto to 380, 9mm, 40 S&W, 357 Sig and 45 ACP (the smaller of these for backup purposes only). I have seen a smattering of 10mms carried, as well.

The Pros

Reliability: Today’s semi-autos, although more problematic in some cases than the revolver, are very reliable. Most well-known manufacturers’ models have been very reliable in my experience.

Concealability: As with the revolver, the small- to mid-frame autos are very concealable with the right holster systems. As a whole, the auto allows a person to carry a larger-frame handgun as compared to the revolver.

Weight: Today’s striker-fired autos are all lightweight material, and there are a wide variety of choices to fit every person’s needs.

Caliber offerings: Wide and diverse to meet the EDC needs of anyone.

Magazine capacity: A double-stack, sub-compact or compact semi-auto has double to triple the round count of the revolver. Worth considering!

Affordability: At the lower end of $300 to $350, autos are competitive with the revolver category in cost.

Add-ons: Although the revolver does have some options here, I believe the autos have an edge for choices in the area of mounted light systems, lasers, night sights and part upgrades.

The Cons

Malfunctions: Yes, I know this relates to reliability. Many folks have experienced a malfunction while shooting a semi-auto. Most are related to magazine issues, ammo, maintenance or shooter error. There is a reason Glocks are so popular.

Operation: For those just starting out, the basic operation of the auto can seem formidable. From locking the slide back to loading ammunition in the magazine, it can seem a bit of a challenge. Get with a qualified trainer and you will overcome these obstacles in no time.

I am sure there are other pros and cons for both revolvers and semi-autos. Recoil is one I hear discussed for both categories when I instruct today. The reality is that recoil can be managed with proper grip and some consideration to caliber and ammunition selection.

There is a place for both systems in your EDC, depending on everything from the weather to your attire and confidence/skill level. In the end, I believe it all comes down to what you feel most comfortable with, and then your determination to train well and train often!

What advice would you add? Share it in the section below:

Pump Shotguns Have One BIG Advantage Over Other Shotguns. Read More Here.

The Incredible History Of The Ever-So-Versatile .30-06

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The Dependable, Ever-Ready, Versatile .30-06

Image source: AllOutdoor.com

An old saying goes, “There is not very much that a man can’t fix, with 500 bucks and a .30-06!”

For more than a century, the caliber .30, year of 1906, has been America’s cartridge. From the trenches of World War I, to the battlefields of World War II, to the Korean War, the deer stand, and the rifle competitions at Camp Perry — the ’06 has been there.

The story of the versatile .30-06 actually goes back to the 1890s, a decade before its introduction. The US military was desperate to get away from black powder and the trap door, single shot Springfields that fired the massive .45-70 cartridge. At the time, nations all over the world were adopting smokeless powder and bolt-action rifles for their respective militaries, and there was no reason for the US to be left behind.

After a few years of trials and much political haggling, the US Army adopted the .30-40 chambered Krag-Jorgensen rifle, a Norwegian design. The rifle was obsolete from the get-go. It had to be loaded one round at a time, and it had a magazine cut-off. These two features encouraged the rifle to be employed as a single shot, with the magazine held in reserve if needed. This was utterly foolish, and proved just as stupid as it sounded on the battlefield during the Spanish-American War.

Another weakness was the ammunition. It was a short-ranged round and did not have the power equal to the ammunition used by the Spanish and their fine Mauser rifles. The US suffered enormous casualties at the Battle of San Juan due to the superior Spanish rifles and ammo.

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After the war, the US copied the Mauser, in the form of the M1903 Springfield. It was a beautiful rifle and was originally chambered with a .30-03 cartridge. This was updated in 1906, much to the credit of then President Theodore Roosevelt. The new cartridge was based on the 8mm Mauser round used by the German army and was just as powerful. Thus, the .30-06.

The cartridge saw its first action in the Philippines, Mexico and France during WWI. After the war, soldiers brought back their Springfield and US Enfield rifles (also chambered in .30-06). Many were sporterized by hunters and taken afield, where the .30-06 proved a very capable hunting cartridge. The ’06 could handle any game animal in the US, and most other game around the world.

Another World War came, and afterward millions of rifles and billions of rounds of surplus ammunition flooded the civilian markets. By now, civilian hunting rifles chambered in .30-06 became more and more common. Deer, elk and moose hunters especially carted .30-06-chambered firearms into the woods to bash their hoofed quarry into submission and fill the freezers back at home. In fact, the .30-06 was the most popular sporting cartridge after the venerable .30-03 in the post-war years in America.

The .30-06 also has served as the parent cartridge for many equally successful loads, especially the .270. In fact, between the .270 and .30-06, more elk have fallen to these two cartridges in the past 70 years than any other chamberings, other than perhaps the .30-30.

In the 1960s, Remington introduced the model 700 hunting rifle, millions of which are chambered in the ’06. The age of mass-produced, relatively cheap hunting rifles had arrived and has not stopped. Today, the .30-06 maintains its place as the king of American hunting cartridges, long after its military service has ended.

The .30-06 can be found in many different bullet weights and powder loads. There are loads tailor-built for whitetail or mule deer hunting. There are loads for elk and larger game. There are even loads for sportsmen to take to Alaska and Africa to take dangerous game such as the coastal brown bear. Just about every gun shop or sporting goods center carries .30-06 cartridges. While more expensive than it has been in years past, it is still affordable. Cheap import ammunition still is available and makes the price much more affordable for the budget-minded shooter.

More than 100 years after its introduction, it’s clear why the .30-06 remains one of America’s favorite calibers.

What advice would you add about the .30-06? Share your thoughts in the section below:

Tired Of Losing Freedoms — And Looking For Another Country? Read More Here.

A 1,000-Yard-Range Survival Rifle? Yep

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A 1,000-Yard-Range Survival Rifle? Yep

Image source: Wikimedia

If there is one iconic firearm of the 20th century that has come from an American arsenal, it is the M1 Garand.

The rifle that GIs and Marines lugged across Europe, slung through dense jungle and fought with on Korea’s frozen mountains. It saw action in Vietnam, and was given out liberally to many of America’s allies during the Cold War years. During the Vietnam protests, the M1 Garand was again used, this time by the National Guard to quell the riots.

The M1 was designed in the 1920s, perfected in the 1930s, and issued starting in 1937. John Garand, a Canadian by birth, took the better part of two decades to perfect his design and beat out the competition.  The rifle, in its final design, incorporated a gas piston-operated semi-automatic action. The M1 was fed from an en-bloc clip (yes a clip, not a magazine in this case) that held eight rounds of .30-06 ammunition. The rifle was both accurate and fast firing, and in fact there was nothing like it in the world that could compete with it at the time.

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The M1 gave troops a distinct advantage in WWII, when most of the enemies’ soldiers were still armed with WWI-era bolt-action rifles. The Garand could both lay down fire faster and be reloaded and brought back into battery quicker. Attempts by other nations to field a standard issue semi-automatic rifle failed. Only the German MP-44 Sturmgewehr, the world’s first successful assault rifle, was a better rifle than the American long arm. However, the Germans only produced about a half million MP-44s whereas the US produced over 6 million Garands.

After WWII and the Korean war, the M1 Garand was replaced with the M-14, which was just an updated M1 that fed from a detachable 20-round magazine instead of the 8-round clip. The M-14 also has a selector switch for full automatic fire. The M-14 was a failure as a standard issue rifle. For one, the cartridge it fired, the 7.62x51mm/.308, was simply a downsized .30-06 and was too powerful for full automatic firing from a shoulder-fired small arm. The remaining M1 Garands in stock were rechambered for .308/7.62 and passed to the National Guard, given to allies or sold as surplus to US civilians.

Story continues below video

Today, the M1 has found a home with competition rifle shooters at national matches. It is also a rifle that is passed down from generation to generation and is owned by millions of Americans. Whether chambered in the modern .308 or the more popular .30-06, the M1 is a powerful and somewhat heavy rifle by today’s standards.

While technically not what one would consider a “battle rifle” by modern standards, it is still able to hold its own. The long stroke gas piston action is very reliable. The rifle’s iron sights are very good, easy to use and accurate. The effective range of the Garand, especially shooting .30-06, is out to about 900 yards – although some shooters have hit targets at 1,000-plus yards. Try shooting that far with your AR-15.

Often the question comes up: Is the M1 Garand still a viable option for survival or home defense? Yes, it is, but it does have its disadvantages. Although I would contend that the M1 Garand is vastly superior to the very popular SKS (of which at least 10 million are owned by Americans), it is not superior to the AR-15 or the AKM platforms in a disaster scenario. First, the M1 cannot shoot most commercial .30-06 ammunition unless you use a different gas plug. Using modern hunting ammunition generates more pressure than the Garand was designed for — and it can blow up your rifle.

Surplus ammo can still be found but it is not cheap – around $1 a round. Steel cased and foreign brass cased ammunition loaded to mil-spec is available but not as cheap as the more readily available 5.56x45mm or 7.62x39mm rounds.

The rifle’s 8-round capacity also can be a handicap, as well as the distinctive “ping!” sound the rifle makes when it is empty and ejects the spent en bloc clip.  However, the sheer power of a .30-06 round or .308 can be enough to win a gun fight, or end a threat.

So yes, the Garand is still a viable option, albeit a little outdated. It is also expensive. You can buy an AR-15 or AKM for around $500-700 today, while a M1 in good shape will not sell for less than $1,000.

Have you ever used an M1 Garand? Share your thoughts on it in the section below:

Pump Shotguns Have One BIG Advantage Over Other Shotguns. Read More Here.

Sig Sauer’s Unbeatable, Super-Accurate 1911 Designs

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Sig Sauer’s Unbeatable, Super-Accurate 1911 Designs

Image source: TheTruthAboutGuns.com

Sig Sauer is a company known for its high-quality double-action semiautomatic pistols. But in 2004, the company made a bold move and entered the single-action M1911 marketplace. More than a decade later, the company continues to improve its 1911 offerings and is becoming a force to be reckoned with on the 1911 front.

Their first effort was the GSR, an abbreviation for Granite Series Rail, tipping the hat to the state of New Hampshire where their US headquarters and production facilities are based. The pistols are constructed of stainless steel frame and use a slide more reminiscent in profile to traditional, double-action Sig Sauer pistols. The rail is a Picatinny type, which allows the mounting of flashlights, lasers and other accessories.

Sig offers a version without the rail called the Match Elite. This version is marketed toward competitive shooters, and the pistol features a match grade trigger and barrel as well as a magazine funnel.

Some of the company’s offerings in the 1911 arena include the TACOPS and Scorpion models. These versions are coated in black Nitrolon for the TACOPS and a desert tan for the Scorpion. Most models are available with threaded barrels for use with a sound suppressor. The TACOPS makes use of gritty slim line grips, whereas the Scorpion utilizes G10 fiberglass grip panels.

Be Prepared. Learn The Best Ways To Hide Your Guns.

Accuracy of these pistols is superb, and both models feature Novak-type sights, some with tritium inserts. The standard barrel length is 5 inches and a carry version is available with a 4.25-inch barrel.

Sig’s 1911s ship in durable foam-padded, hard-sided cases and come standard with two high quality magazines holding 8 rounds each. Other packages can be ordered, with as many as six spare magazines coming from the factory.

There seem to be three complaints about the Sig 1911 series.

The first is that the pistol makes use of an external extractor. Personally, I prefer this feature, as it seems to be more robust and more reliable than the version normally encountered on this over-a-century-old design.

Second is the use of some MIM (metal injection molding) parts in its construction. MIM is controversial, as some companies produce parts that can break easily and this taints the reputation of those companies who get it right. From an aesthetic perspective, most MIM parts give a mismatched look to any handgun due to the differences in metallurgy with slide and frame construction.

Third, there is the issue with the slide dimensions being thicker than most 1911 pistols. This can make finding a holster problematic or expensive if you go the custom route.

I can live with those three issues, as I have found my Sig 1911 pistols to be very reliable and surprisingly accurate for an out-of-the-box 1911. It routinely outshot some of my higher-end custom 1911 pistols to the point where I traded one in so I could buy two more Sig pistols.

In 2015 Sig announced a 1911 chambered in its popular 357 Sig cartridge. It is safe to say that this is a variant with which I want to try next.

Have you tried Sig’s 1911s? What was your reaction, and which one did you use? Share your advice below:

Pump Shotguns Have One BIG Advantage Over Other Shotguns. Read More Here.

AR-15 Armorer’s Essentials Kit – Unboxing (video)

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Many of us would rather build our own AR-15.  It can be much cheaper, depending on the parts, as well as customizing it to our own specifications.  Then there are those of us who want to, but have no idea where to begin.  So we hit YouTube and Google for research.

Wheeler Engineering’s “AR-15 Armorer’s Essentials Kit” contains several of the tools needed for building an AR-15. In this video OIFEagle will unbox the kit and discuss what tools you can expect to see, and why the kit grabbed his attention.  He goes into detail about each tool that you need, and even some you might not know you need, what their function is, as well as the cost.

He purchased his kit for $89.99 at SportsmansGuide.com. (Item Number: WX2-294372) He also encourages people to shop around for a better price; however that is the cheapest he found.

OIFEagle is a U.S. Army Officer, Gentleman, and Veteran of Operation Iraqi Freedom. (OIF) He is a Free-thinking Conservative, Christian, Husband, and Father. He is also currently stationed at Fort Bragg, NC.

The main purpose of his video blog is to discuss politics, firearms, gunsmithing, and preparations for the zombie apocalypse.

Video By OIFEagle

Please support their channel by subscribing here 

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VIDEO: 7-Year-Old Shooting An AR-15 For The 1st Time Blows Away Liberal Media Myths

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VIDEO: 7-Year-Old Shooting An AR-15 For The 1st Time Blows Away Liberal Media Myths

YouTube screen capture.

The popular AR-15 rifle has been the subject of several recent media reports, and one reporter – Gersh Kuntzman of the New York Daily News – even reported it gave him a “temporary form of PTSD” after he fired it at a gun range.

“Squeeze lightly on the trigger and the resulting explosion of firepower is humbling and deafening (even with ear protection),” he wrote. “The recoil bruised my shoulder, which can happen if you don’t know what you’re doing. The brass shell casings disoriented me as they flew past my face. The smell of sulfur and destruction made me sick. The explosions — loud like a bomb — gave me a temporary form of PTSD. For at least an hour after firing the gun just a few times, I was anxious and irritable.”

Be Prepared. Learn The Best Ways To Hide Your Guns.

But even though people have different reaction to different guns, Kuntzman’s description of an AR-15 rifle received pushback from gun owners. One YouTube video that went viral showed a 7-year-old girl enjoying time on the firing range with her father while shooting an AR-15 for the first time. The father does a great job teaching her about gun safety, and both of them enjoy the experience. Watch it below:

 

Pump Shotguns Have One BIG Advantage Over Other Shotguns. Read More Here.

BREAKING: Federal Appeals Court Strikes Down Concealed Carry

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BREAKING: Federal Appeals Court Strikes Down Concealed Carry

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The Second Amendment does not give Americans the right to carry concealed weapons, a federal appeals court ruled Thursday in a decision that could dramatically impact the nation’s gun laws.

“We hold that the Second Amendment does not protect, in any degree, the carrying of concealed firearms by members of the general public,” the opinion by the US Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals read. It was written by Judge Susan P. Graber, a Clinton nominee. “We therefore conclude that the Second Amendment right to keep and bear arms does not include, in any degree, the right of a member of the general public to carry concealed firearms in public.”

The case, Peruta v. San Diego County, originated out of California, although its effect was felt across the country. The vote was 7-4.

“The U.S. Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals held today that residents have no Second Amendment right to carry a firearm outside their home for self-defense,” Alabama Attorney General Luther Strange said. “In effect, the appeals court ruled that San Diego County can outlaw guns outside the home by declining to issue anyone a permit. This court’s decision is a direct challenge to the Second Amendment and is unconstitutional.”

In a dissent, Judge Consuelo Callahan, a nominee of President George W. Bush, wrote, “A prohibition on carrying concealed handguns in conjunction with a prohibition of open carry of handguns would destroy the right to bear and carry arms.”

Be Prepared. Learn The Best Ways To Hide Your Guns.

The sheriff’s departments in two California counties, Yolo and San Diego, only issue concealed carry permits to people who can prove they are in danger from violent attack – such as by showing a restraining order. In 2009 two men, Edward Peruta of San Diego and Adam Richards of Yolo County, applied for concealed carry permits and were turned down.

That prompted the California Rifle and Pistol Association to sue the counties in federal court on behalf of Peruta, Richards and three others. Last year, a three-judge panel of the Ninth Circuit ruled that the policy violated the Second Amendment. The entire Ninth Circuit overturned that ruling on Thursday.

The immediate impact of the ruling is that it affects only the states in the Ninth Circuit: Alaska, Washington state, Idaho, Oregon, Montana, Nevada, California and Hawaii. But if it is appealed to the US Supreme Court and upheld, then concealed carry could be banned nationwide.

The case attracted national attention, with briefs filed by states outside the district, including Alabama. All total, 20 other states signed the brief: Alaska, Arkansas, Florida, Idaho, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Missouri, Montana, Nevada, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Texas, Utah, West Virginia and Wisconsin.

BREAKING: Federal Appeals Court Strikes Down Concealed Carry A number of Second Amendment rights and gun control groups also filed friend-of-the-court briefs.

The defendants in the case, San Diego County Sheriff William D. Gore and the state of California, were represented by California Solicitor General Edward C. DuMont. DuMont appealed the loss from last year, after Gore declined to do so, the Associated Press reported. The plaintiffs were represented by Paul D. Clement, who served as US solicitor general during the George W. Bush administration.

Interestingly, the court refused to touch on the issue of open carry of firearms in public.

“We do not reach the question whether the Second Amendment protects some ability to carry firearms in public, such as open carry,” the opinion read. “The Second Amendment may or may not protect, to some degree, a right of a member of the general public to carry firearms in public. We hold only that there is no Second Amendment right for members of the general public to carry concealed firearms in public.”

The court also ruled that the US Supreme Court’s Heller decision, which upheld the right of private gun ownership, does not affect concealed carry.

Most observers expect Peruta will be appealed to the US Supreme Court – the only court of appeal from the Ninth Circuit.

The case will presumably arrive at the Supreme Court sometime after Justice Antonin Scalia’s replacement is on the court. Scalia, whose opinions supported gun rights, died in February.

What is your reaction to the ruling? Share your thoughts in the section below:

Pump Shotguns Have One BIG Advantage Over Other Shotguns. Read More Here.

Bug Out Gun Lights: Part 2

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Best Gun Light

As noted in part one of Bug Out Gun Lights, mounting a light on a weapon, whether long gun or handgun, is Bug Out Gun Lighta necessary option for every bug in and bug out scenario.  The light is not just for discriminating among potential targets, but also to light the escape route, to light the impromptu medical theater, and to signal others as needed. In part one, the generalities of WMLs or weapon mounted lights were explored.  In part two of Bug Out Gun Lights we will consider long rifle implications, shotguns, and specific lights.

By Doc Montana, a contributing author of Survival Cache and SHTFBlog
This article is Part 2 in a series on Bug Out Gun Lights (Read Part 1)

Have vs. Want

The next time I get mugged, it will be in broad daylight, under a noon blue sky, inside the lobby of a police station, during SWAT open house, while POTUS is in attendance, and I just happened to have started my demonstration of how to load an MP5 with live ammo.

Also Read: Pro Level Key Fob Lights

Unfortunately statistics are not on my side. Most violent encounters in the US happen after the sun is well on it’s way to China.  In other words, it’s dark. So training with a weapon mounted light is an important piece of the survival puzzle.  FBI stats have shown that over 50 percent of LEOs that were killed in the line of duty met their end during the hours between 8pm and 6am. And even worse, 92% of all assaults on LEOs occurred between those same hours. While you might not be a LEO, the risk of assault, robbery, and pretty much everything nasty in between is more likely to happen at night. Thus the need for a WML. But also the responsibility of the gun owner to absolutely know his target. Wandering in the dark is ignoring 80% of the input the brain prefers to use to process a situation. Sight is our dominant sense, and light is essential for sight.

Related: Compact Flashlight Comparison

Not all LEOs were giddy about dedicated weapons lights when they arrived.  In fact, it was the K9 officers who were first in line to adopt WMLs.  With one hand perpetually attached to a dog leash, they had only half the number of available upper torso appendages to begin with.  By making gun and light one unit, the K9 cops could move around more like their unleashed brethren.

Location. Location. Location.

Now that WMLs are powerful enough to be practical on a rifle, it really is only a matter of time before you get one. But where to put it?  Many modern ARs have three linear feet of rail or more, but only the final two inches near the muzzle will work for a light. If you have a fixed front sight, you probably don’t want to mount the light on the top rail since the photons will hit the first object they encounter the hardest (the front sight) and under maximum intensity it causes an unacceptable hotspot that will compromise your vision and aiming. If you are right handed, you might want the light opposite your support hand’s grip (the left side). That leaves the bottom rail and the right side as good choices.  A bottom mount behind the muzzle will create a shadow above the gun, while a right mount will create a left-side shadow and can cause issues when rounding corners just as a left-side mount will.

For forest and ranch work, I don’t mind the under barrel mount on my AR.  In this case I would rather have a clean view of the ground for safer travel. But a simple twist of the carry position moves the light into the 9 or more likely the 3 o’clock position minimizing any forward shadowing when needed.

Most mounting choices lock-in the light in one of the 90-degree positions: 12 O’clock, 3, 6 and 9 O’clock.  The two things to consider are light activation by the support hand, and preferred shadow position opposite the light.

Also Read: 10 Best Survival Items

If an intermediate option to the four standard coordinates is desired consider options such as the Daniel Defense light mount or the Magpul offset light mount. A downside to the Magpul mount is that it is screwed onto the rail (two bolts), and the flashlight is attached to the mount (two more bolts), so switching between using the light in-hand and-on gun takes time and tools. The Daniel Defense option is much simpler but three times as expensive. It uses a single large knob to attach the mount to the rail with the light held to the mount like a scope in a ring.

Blowback

Muzzle blast and recoil can damage lights and coat their lenses with light-diminishing debris. Some lights Gun lightslike my now-discontinued Leupold have synthetic sapphire lenses to deal with the harsh life of living next to muzzle blast.  Other lights might seem tough at the store, but a few mags later are crying for mommy.  While I thoroughly appreciate the effort Leopold put into their now-defunct MX modular flashlight system, it should have been built for continuity with interchangeable LED modules since the lens, battery barrels, and switches are good for decades but the LEDs are evolving faster than the Avian Flu. So much good tech has gone to pasture due to fixation on the present.

Also Read: Streamlight TLR-3 Review

Lights must be strong enough to shake off gun recoil.  While LEDs usually ignore impacts, the circuits, switches, battery contacts, and lens components can get their bell rung.  Batteries have mass and thus prefer to remain still when the rest of the light is accelerated in a direction opposite of the bullet.  Simple Newtonian mechanics. This can lead to compression of the springs and contacts that normally ensure a complete circuit that keeps the electrons flowing. Darkness falls whenever there is a break in the circuit causing the light to blink or go out all together. And sometimes the electricity never flows again. But this is a double-edged coin to mix my metaphors. Any working light will work until the trigger is pulled. So basically you have at least one shot with any WML. Good lights will keep running. Weak lights…well, you need to move to plan B.

Moving Parts

Most good lights have O-ring seals at all material interfaces.  But that won’t necessarily keep the light from Best Weapon Mounted Lightsunscrewing itself over time or during repeated fire.  Keep an eye on the connections between components, and give the light a good shake every once in a while to listen for parts rattling around inside the tube.

Also Read: Project Squirrel Gun

And speaking of moving parts, the design of the switch on paper is completely different from the operation of the switch in a human hand, especially when contacting that wonderful opposable thumb we’ve been taught separates us from the rest of the animal kingdom. The thumb switch should have the right amount of resistance and tactile click to talk back during the activation.  Of all my lights, there is just something about the Surefire and Fenix lights that have that proper click.  Although you might have noticed that Fenix does not make any WMLs.  That’s because they do, but they are marketed under different brand names and non-competition clauses will prevent Fenix from selling any for at least a few more years.

Toyota spends millions on the feel of it.  And so does Geissele, Magpul and Daniel Defense.  You see there are very few places on a weapons light that involve human interaction so those companies that pay special attention to the human-flashlight interface are those that I prefer.  The reason for stressing this particular tangent of weapons mounted lights is that when the S hits the Fan, your pulse spikes, adrenaline is dumped into your bloodstream, and your vision tunnels, the operation of a WML must be like every other human reaction that has evolved over millions of years. Not time for memorized luminosity sequences. No time to wonder, to paraphrase Sigmund Freud, if a click is just a click.

Related: Bug Out Flashlight Wisdom

Another area to consider is the composition of the lens.  Super-high-end lights use sapphire glass material, the same stuff in your Rolex watch crystal.  Moving down in price is impact resistant glass of sufficient thickness, followed by glass. Then polycarbonate plastic. Then plastic of unknown origin.  But anything near the business end of a rifle should not be made of a meltable oil-based material like plastic.

Bolt Upright!

Mounting solutions run from simple to complex, and cheap to expensive. If the light has a built-in rail mounting option, then the rail slots must match the light’s size. On full-sized autopistols like the Glock 17, small form-factor lights may generate a substantial gap between trigger guard and light. A raw fact to keep in mind is that if a solidly mounted light extends further forward than the pistol’s barrel, it will be possible to jam the gun into the perp without concern of a misfire due to the slide being pushed rearward and out of battery while the business end of the gun squishes into the flesh of the bad guy.  To put a friendly face on this important fact, there are notable events where a LEOs bacon was saved by the purp punching their lighted muzzle into the cop’s belly or forehead and jerked the trigger but no bang followed.  All possible by the slightly-forward mounting of a WML.

But…

On the other side of the coin, if you have a light such as the Surefire x300 Ultra you can enjoy the ease of Gun Light Reviewswitching the light between guns, hands or pockets. Do note, however, that the x300U fires up quite easily in the hand and pocket compared to traditional dialed-in flashlight designs due to its pressure activation in addition to its switch rotation. I’ve also fired up my x300 just by grabbing the gun out of a case. If done in the dark, you just shot your night vision all to hell. Just food for thought.

Also Read: Why The Tomahawk?

Inexpensive and versatile mounts include the ExtremeBeam Weaver mount. For $14, you can mount any one-inch diameter light to almost any gun.  The mount can grab standard rails, or use the included rail mount to secure it to a barrel.  I have used this mount on a 20 gauge Remington 870 shotgun in addition to ARs.  There are almost no aftermarket tactical accessories for the 20GA 870 platform since it seems the entire rest of the world only cares about the 12 gauge so I was on my own to find a light mount. Lately I’ve settled in on using the rail mount of the ExtremeBeam Weaver to hold a Streamlight TLR-4 light/laser to my house-bound blued pump blunderbuss.

1000 Is The New Black

For a WML, 500 or more lumens is a great number for a pistol these days. But for a rifle that might breathe some fresh outdoor air once in awhile, 1000 lumens is my new best friend. Surefire makes some triple-cell lights under the Fury name. I have both the tactical version and the regular one. The P3X Tactical Fury has a no-click tail cap switch, but instead just a pressure button that fires the light as long as the rubber is held down. The Tactical only has one setting…full blast, which limits its general usefulness as a flashlight. To keep the light on, the tail cap must be rotated clockwise. I like to mount this light on the nine O’clock position so I can fire the light easily with my support hand thumb while keeping a tight grip on the handguard. If I want the light to stay on, I just grab the tail switch like the cap on a beer bottle and give it a twist.

Also Read: Taurus First 24 Kit

The regular P3X Fury has a two-stage tailcap click switch that fires first a 15 lumen beam, the a thousand lumen one if clicked again within a second. I prefer to pocket carry this Fury since most of the time I use it in first gear.

The Dust is Settling

At the moment, we are at an intellectual transition about weapon-mounted lighting. Much of the negative Best AR15 LED Lightpress and skeptical opinions are based upon old knowledge, old designs, old filament lights, and old tactics. Where modern bug out wisdom diverges from conventional law enforcement procedures is with duration of use, location of use, and situational use. Plus, in a bug out you are hopefully not running towards trouble like the LEOs are paid to do. In a true WROL, I will skew the rules in my favor. As they say, a fair fight is any fight you can lose. I know there are risks to using a weapon-mounted light, but frankly we’ve said the same things about so many other aspects of personal safety until the next generation’s embrace of the technology proved our historical concerns to be no longer founded in 21st century reality. So light it up.

Got a weapon mounted light and/or advise about your use of it? Tell us about it in the comments below.

All Photos by Doc Montana
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5 Things You BETTER Know And Do Before Carrying Concealed (If You Want To Stay Alive)

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5 Things You BETTER Know (And Do) Before Carrying Concealed

Image source: Wikipedia

Carrying a concealed weapon is a major decision one must make, and ultimately you as an adult are solely in charge of defending your life. It can be an intimidating venture, but I have a few tips I’ve discovered after carrying a weapon for the last five years.

1. Wear your rig everywhere

Wearing a gun in a concealed fashion for the first time is quite uncomfortable. First off, holsters are often like boots: They have to be broken in. Not only does the holster have to be broken in, but you have to be broken into carrying a gun. If you are a new concealed carrier, or waiting for your permit, or scheduling a class, go ahead and start looking for holsters and guns. When you decide on one holster or another, just start wearing it. The more you carry, the more comfortable you’ll be with a gun.

You’ll also learn how to comfortably conceal your weapon. This means you can test your belt’s mettle, making sure it is supportive and comfortable. You’ll learn that if you use an inside-the-waistband holster, you’ll have to up your size of pants. You’ll also learn how to adjust a shoulder holster, and you’ll see if carrying your weapon is viable with your everyday attire.

2. Try a variety of holsters

When it comes to purchasing a holster, be prepared to purchase several holsters. You may read rave reviews about one holster or another, but find they simply don’t work for you. I love Alien Gear Holsters, but you may not. Be prepared to try some holsters out, and to start your own small collection. As a side note, stay away from cheap nylon holsters, and if your holster costs the same as a box of ammo, you’re doing it wrong.

Do You Know The Best Way To Hide Your Guns?

Most people are going to face situations in their life where their normal method of dress will change. I wear a shirt and tie to my day job, and typically jeans and a T-shirt when I’m off work. These sets of clothing have different restrictions and challenges for carrying a weapon. I own a Sneaky Pete for carrying at work, and a simple Stealth operator compact holster from Phalanx Defense systems. I keep an Alien Gear Cloak Tuck for deep concealment in casual clothes. These three holsters give me options for nearly every clothing I choose to wear.

3. Know your weapon and holster inside and out

5 Things You BETTER Know (And Do) Before Carrying Concealed

Image source: YouTube

This is a big one. If you use multiple holsters like I do, then you want to train with all of them. Each of my holsters is similar enough to make cross training easy but different enough to make it necessary. If you choose to use different holsters and one has a retention device and the other does not, then you’ll have to practice for that. You’ll have to train how to draw the weapon not only with your strong hand but with your weak hand, with your back on the ground, and so forth.

Knowing your weapon is another major factor. For example, I typically carry a Walther PPS in 9mm. The Walther PPS has a different magazine release than most weapons, and I have to train to use it. If I carried a weapon with a safety, I’d train to disable that safety on every draw during practice. You need to practice mag changes with both hands, disabling the safety with both hands, and be able to use the weapon with one hand competently.

4. Practice with your everyday carry ammo

Most practice you do will be with standard full metal jacket ammunition; it’s cheap, effective and commonly available. No doubt, training with FMJs is valuable and will be the majority of training you’ll do. You do need to occasionally shoot your defensive ammunition. When you first purchase a gun and choose your defensive ammo you should buy two boxes — one for carry, and one for practice. Make sure your weapon can reliably feed in the weapon. Some defensive ammo may have a tweaked overall length, which may affect reliability. Some defensive ammo has a polymer tip to it, and this may affect reliability with your weapon.

Outside of reliability testing, you should shoot your defensive ammo just to remember how it handles. For example, I use Speer Gold Dot 124 grain that is +P. That +P adds some more power to the round and some more recoil. I want to make sure I am capable of handling this recoil and to expect it. Also, if you constantly rechamber defensive ammo after practice over and over, you may push the bullet into the case, reducing the overall length.

5. Be willing to fight

The last tip is a mental block some people may have to climb over. As a CCW instructor, I have heard it from a few people that they never want to shoot anyone, and hope the gun will simply scare the attacker off. This is a dangerous mindset, and if you aren’t willing to pull the trigger, you shouldn’t be carrying the weapon. If you pull your weapon and can’t pull the trigger, you may lose it to your attacker and suffer some serious consequences.

You need to be prepared to fight, to truly take hold of your responsibility to defend yourself, and, if necessary, shoot your attacker. Carrying a gun without the willingness to use it makes the weapon useless.

What concealed carry tips and advice would you add? Share your thoughts in the section below:

Pump Shotguns Have One BIG Advantage Over Other Shotguns. Read More Here.

Garden Buddies: Vegetables That Thrive And Flourish Next To Each Other

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Garden Buddies: Vegetables That Thrive And Flourish Next To Each Other

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Companion planting makes sense in an organic garden by creating plant diversity and using garden space more efficiently. Some plants work as pest deterrents, while others act as traps, drawing harmful bugs away from more susceptible veggies. Some gardeners are convinced that companion planting doubles the harvest, making it well worth the extra effort.

The Native American Three Sisters planting method, which involves corn, beans and squash, is one of the best examples of how companion planting works. As corn stalks gain height, they provide support for vining bean plants, and the beans repay the favor by fixing nitrogen in the soil. Squash, a fast-growing plant, does its part by shading the soil, preserving moisture and helping keep weeds in check.

Keep in mind that companion planting is not an exact science, and what works well for your friend across town may not work for you. Experimentation will reveal what natural friendships crop up in your garden.

Get The Best Deals On Non-GMO Seeds For Your Garden Right Here!

Beets – Cabbage and related plants do well near beet plants, as do members of the onion family. Beets also like bush beans, lettuce and chard, but it’s best to keep them away from pole beans.

Garden Buddies: Vegetables That Thrive And Flourish Next To Each Other

Image source: Pixabay.com

Beans – Bush beans interact positively with cucumbers, corn, radishes, celery, beets and members of the cabbage family. Pole beans, on the other hand, are a little pickier; they get along famously with radishes and corn, but hate beets. Plant potatoes next to either type of bean if you have problem with beetles, as potatoes tend to repel the pests. Avoid onions, garlic, leeks and chives, which may stunt bean plant growth.

Carrots – Onions, garlic and leeks help repel carrot flies and other pests, while members of the cabbage family also tend to discourage various pests that bug carrots. Beneficial carrot buddies also include peas, beans, lettuce, radishes, peppers and tomatoes.

Sweet corn – Beans are super helpful companion plants for corn, attracting beneficial insects that feast on corn-ravaging pests. Other companion plants that may enhance corn plant growth include potatoes, beans, melons, squash, pumpkins, cucumbers and peas. However, plant corn and tomatoes at least 4 feet apart, as the two don’t do well together.

Cucumbers – Cucumbers thrive on nitrogen that peas and beans provide to the soil, while radishes help by drawing cucumber beetles away from tender cukes. Corn is a good companion for cucumbers, but potatoes and melons aren’t so good. Plant them in a different area of the garden.

Lettuce – Plant onions, garlic and chives nearby to deter aphids, maggots and other pests. Additionally, you can plant lettuce under tall tomatoes or corn, as lettuce appreciates the cool shade. Lettuce also gets along well with carrots, cucumbers, parsnips, beets and members of the cabbage family.

Onions – Onions grow well alongside many vegetable plants, including tomatoes, beets, peppers, lettuce, carrots, chard and most members of the cabbage family (with the exception of kohlrabi).

Peas – Plant peas near radishes, carrots, corn, cucumbers, parsley, tomatoes and turnips, but not in close proximity to onions, garlic, leeks or chives.

Peppers – Peppers get along well with most vegetables, including eggplant, parsley, carrots, tomatoes and members of the onion family. On the other hand, beans and peppers aren’t a good combination.

Garden Buddies: Vegetables That Thrive And Flourish Next To Each Other

Image source: Pixabay.com

Radish – Radishes are cheerful little plants that get along with most vegetables, including carrots, beets, parsnips and spinach. Many gardeners think companion planting radishes and lettuce makes radishes more tender. However, it’s best not to plant radish in close proximity to members of the cabbage family.

Spinach – When you plant spinach and radishes side by side, the spinach works as a trap plant, meaning it attracts leafminers that are capable of decimating your spinach crop. Chinese mustard works in much the same fashion. Spinach also grows well alongside eggplants, celery and members of the cabbage family.

Potatoes – Plant spuds along with beans, eggplant, corn, peas and members of the cabbage family, but locate tomatoes, melons, squash, turnips and cucumbers in another corner of your garden.

Tomatoes – Many gardeners believe that chives can make tomatoes even sweeter. Other good tomato companions include parsley, carrots, celery, asparagus, onions, garlic and leeks. Tomatoes and corn are enemies, primarily because they tend to attract the same pests. Similarly, potatoes are susceptible to the same blight, which means they aren’t good companions for tomatoes. Plant tomatoes away from cauliflower, kale and other members of the cabbage family, which are believed to stunt tomato plant growth.

Which vegetables do you plant near one another – and avoid planting near one another? Share your tips in the section below:

Every Spring, Gardeners Make This Avoidable Mistake — But You Don’t Have To. Read More Here.

The Super-Accurate, Under-The-Radar Pistol That’s Perfect For Concealed Carry

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The Super-Accurate, Under-The-Radar Pistol That’s Perfect For Concealed Carry

Image source: YouTube

 

One of my favorite carry pieces is a little known Austrian-made pistol: the Steyr S9-A1. On the surface it looks like a typical polymer framed, striker-fired pistol. But its utility is deeper than this.

Most people know of Steyr for their iconic AUG rifles. These futuristic bullpup rifles have been around for over three decades and represented innovations for rifle manufacture and deployment.

The S9-A1 pistol is no different.

Like the majority of polymer-framed striker-fired pistols, there are no external safeties or de-cocking mechanisms. This is not new, in and of itself. These types of pistols have proven themselves time and time again.

Where the Steyr starts to depart from the rest of the pack is in its trigger.

Do You Know The Best Way To Hide Your Guns?

Wilhelm Bubits, who was the brain behind the Glock 20, developed this trigger. It is a two-piece type that is preset to a crisp-and-clean four pounds, and rearward movement is more reminiscent of a 1911 style pistol. A very short reset allows the shooter to make quicker follow-up shots.

Another key difference is the unique trapezoidal-type sights. Instead of traditional “three dots,” the Steyr S9-A1 makes use of a triangular front sight that reminds us of the reticle on our Trijicon ACOG. Diagonal lines cut into the rear sight allow the shooter to bring the sights to alignment and seem to allow the eye to capture this sight picture readily.

The Super-Accurate, Under-The-Radar Pistol That’s Perfect For Concealed Carry

Image source: YouTube

Some shooters have a hard time adapting to this sight picture, and that can be remedied by replacing them with traditional three-dot sights with tritium inserts.

My main reason for loving this pistol is the Steyr S9-A1’s superb-grip angle. Cut high into the frame, the shooter can easily maintain a grip which is close to the axis of the bore. I find it to be the most perfect grip design on any polymer-framed handgun, and think it needs no “grip reduction,” texturing or interchangeable back straps.

There is a short accessory rail on the frame to attach a visible white light or laser.

The magazines are masterpieces of construction, but this is one of the pistol’s shortcomings in my view. They are easily capable of holding 12 or 13 rounds, yet they are blocked off to hold only 10 rounds. They resemble circa 1994-2004 restricted capacity magazines and probably help sales in states with restrictive bans on magazine capacity, but I would like to see true factory magazines that are unrestricted.

Fortunately, magazines for the full-size M9 and L9 series will fit in the pistol, although they protrude from the bottom of the frame an inch or so.

Unlike other polymer-framed striker-fired pistols on the market, there are very few aftermarket accessories for the S9-A1. Part of the reason is that the pistols are just about perfect out of the box; the other is that it is not a well-known firearm.

The holster makers are getting better at producing holsters for the Steyr pistols, though. I went with a custom Kydex rig through L.A.G. Tactical of Reno, Nevada.

My main reason above all these for going with the Steyr is its accuracy. I regularly achieve sub-two-inch groups at distances of 50 feet with my Steyr. It replaced my H&K P7M8 for carry based on this alone.

They can be tough to find, but MSRP is less than $500, and every now and then you can find them on sale.

Caliber: 9mm

Weight: 26 ounces

Overall length: 6.7 inches

Barrel length: 3.6 inches

MSRP: $469

Have you ever used an S9-A1? What advice would you add? Share it in the section below:

If You Run Out Of Ammo, What Would You Do? Read More Here.

Glock 23 -.40 cal to 9mm conversion

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In this video I am going to show you how to convert a Glock 23 .40 caliber handgun into a 9mm handgun with a simple barrel change. I am also going for a personal “world record” of the process. I do this in 12.96 seconds. It’s not really a world record, but I was just having some fun. You can buy 9mm barrels from GlockStore.com or LoneWolfdist.com. You can also find them on eBay or Amazon. Not all .40 calibers can be converted to 9mm, so make sure you research before you buy a new barrel. Also, keep in mind that you will want to purchase new 9mm magazines for your new rig. The .40 caliber magazines can hold 9mm ammunition, but I find that the gun tends to malfunction quite often, especially if you use cheap ammo like I do. Once again, go ahead and spend the money on some new 9mm magazines. I bought mine from GlockStore.com and am very happy with my purchase. You don’t want to be in a life or death gun fight and not have the best equipment to survive. Why did I do a conversion instead of just buying a separate 9mm handgun you ask??? Because another handgun would cost hundreds more! I feel like I have two handguns for the price of an extra barrel and some magazines (I spent about $150 total). Do you have any questions? Please feel free to leave a question in the comments and I will do my best to answer. Have an idea for a video? Leave that in the comments too. Thanks, Coach David Alexander

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5 Reasons You Still Should Own A Revolver (No 4. Is A Bit Surprising)

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5 Reasons You Still Should Own A Revolver (No 4. Is A Bit Surprising)

Revolvers are here to stay, despite the fact that they hold a limited number of rounds and are slower to reload when compared to semiautomatic handguns. Does that mean that you need a six-shooter in your handgun battery?

It depends.

For more than a century revolvers were the de facto “go-to” handgun for civilians, soldiers and peace officers. They remained in service after the introduction and adoption of the semiautomatic pistol, and their decline has only been over the past two to three decades.

Manufacturers continue to produce revolvers, and it seems that every time we try to write them off as obsolete, that a new model comes forth.

What is it about the revolver that still endears it to so many shooters?

1. Nostalgia

For many shooters, revolvers hearken back to a simpler time. Whether it is from watching Western-themed movies or police dramas set from the 1940s through the late 1980s, the revolver played a dominant role from the taming of the frontier through the end of the Reagan era.

Many new revolvers coming to market are designed for period re-enactors who need to replicate arms from the Civil War, through the Old West up through the Roaring 20s.

Do You Know The Best Way To Hide Your Guns?

As a student of history, the author can certainly appreciate revolvers from this standpoint.

2. Reliability

There was a time when revolvers held the advantages of simplicity and reliability. The modern semiautomatic pistol has finally come into its own in this regard, but for many years they were denigrated as being “fussy with ammo types,” “prone to malfunction” and – heaven forbid — the “need to be maintained and cleaned.”

There is a lot to be said for any firearm that can be left loaded for long periods of time, remain reliable, have no worries about automatic ejection of spent casings before firing another round and no reliance on external safeties.

Many new semiautomatic pistols have this same advantage, but it is one thing that cannot be taken away from the revolver.

3. Concealability

Apart from the reenactor revolvers, there are two other classes of revolver that shooters want to see. The first of these are the small, compact revolvers that can easily slide into a pocket holster and be carried comfortably all day.

The J-Frame Smith & Wesson revolvers and the mini revolvers from companies such as North American Arms make for outstanding concealed carry or backup guns to a primary defensive handgun.

Some revolvers with concealed or shrouded hammers can be fired from inside a pocket; not even the best compact 380 can manage that.

4. Power

5 Reasons You Still Should Own A Revolver (No 4. Is A Bit Surprising)

460 S&W

The other type of revolvers that shooters seem to want is the Magnum caliber revolver. Beyond 357 Magnum, 41 Magnum and 44 Magnum, there is an entirely new class emerging in the 454 Casull, 460 S&W and 500 S&W cartridges.

These large caliber wheel guns have all but replaced the various single shot and bolt-action pistols chambered in rifle cartridges for handgun hunting due to similar and sometimes superior ballistics — not to mention their ease of use when compared to the bolt action “mini rifle handguns.”

Semiautomatic handguns in these calibers need to be overbuilt in order to handle the pressures and the slides made much heavier.

Even with some modern auto pistol rounds (like the 10mm fired through a 6-inch Glock 40), the power factor is at the lower end of the power scale when compared to the revolver cartridge it is trying to emulate.

For a hunting handgun, the revolver is still king.

5. Simplicity

Regardless of the type of revolver, the hallmark of a wheel gun is its simplicity and shorter learning curve. We learned how to shoot on semiautomatic pistols, and when we started as an instructor we were convinced we could teach all our students the same way.

For some shooters, though, the revolver has a quicker learning curve. It may be they are distracted by ejecting brass, have difficulty with slide manipulation or are enamored by the superior grip characteristics of a classic Colt or Smith. If part of your goal is to introduce new people to the shooting sports, a spare 38 Special revolver can help a newcomer who might otherwise give up.

I simply like revolvers, for many of the reasons cited above. My Colt SAA is a piece of history at more than 115 years old, and a Colt Detective Special conceals easier in the summer months than a Glock 19. Additionally, my S&W 500 can drop an elk at 50 yards.

What are your thoughts on revolvers? Share them in the section below:

If You Run Out Of Ammo, What Would You Do? Read More Here.

The Best Way To Store Guns From Kids – While Keeping Them Ready To Access

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The Best Way To Store Guns From Kids – While Keeping Them Ready To Access

Image source: AlienGearHolsters.com

For many of us, owning a gun is all about being able to defend ourselves and protect our loved ones if needed.

But how do you follow the conventional rules of gun safety – keeping your firearm unloaded and secured until ready to use – and still have the weapon ready for self-defense?

If you have children, roommates or you frequently entertain and have guests over, you don’t want to leave your handgun loaded and laying on your nightstand. By the same token, it will be of little benefit if left unloaded in a safe in the garage or basement when a home invader kicks in your door at midnight.

We all too often read about children getting their hands on a firearm and catastrophic events follow. The child shoots a friend, a family member, or even himself. Sadly, these too often result in a death.

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There are various child locks and wall or closet safes that can safely contain a handgun and keep it out of the wrong hands while still being accessible when needed.

Biometric safes have evolved by leaps and bounds and can be activated only by the user’s fingerprints. This gives quicker access than the various keyed and combination locks common to most safes and lock boxes. Best of all, the technology behind these is no longer prohibitively expensive.

The best recommendation, however, is to keep your defensive handgun in a comfortable holster and wear it at all times or as often as you can.

That way it is always completely under your control while remaining easily accessible.

The Best Way To Store Guns From Kids – While Keeping Them Ready To Access

Image source: Pixabay.com

Most children who pick up a firearm and have an accident do so because they think the firearm is a toy or they do not grasp the reality of the outcome of a gunshot.

To help teach children about gun safety, the National Rifle Association has a program called “Eddie Eagle.” The program is designed to teach children how to act if they come across a firearm.

It is a simple mantra, not unlike the one most children are taught to protect themselves from burning in a fire: Stop, drop and roll.

This is designed for preschoolers through fourth graders and, in my opinion, should be mandatory for all children. Even if they don’t have a firearm in their home, other family and friends may have firearms in theirs. Here’s what the NRA teaches children to do if they find a gun:

  1. Stop: The first step is the most critical. A mental note to stop gives the child a cue to pause and remember the rest of the safety instructions.
  2. Don’t touch: Firearms are not sentient and capable of acting on their own. If a firearm is left undisturbed it will not be fired and thus poses no risk.
  3. Leave the area: This takes the child away from the potential source of danger. Your child may not pick up the firearm, but another child might.
  4. Tell an adult: Children are taught to find a trustworthy and responsible adult such as a neighbor, relative or teacher if a parent or guardian is not available.

These four simple steps are only the first layer in a network of safety to prevent a child from having an accident with your firearm.

What advice would you add? How do you keep your children safe? Share your tips in the section below:

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The 5 Best Sig Pistols Money Can Buy

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The 5 Best Sig Pistols Money Can Buy

P210. Image source: TheFiringLine.com

One of the most popular firearms manufacturers is Sig Sauer. For more than six decades, the company has earned a reputation for quality rifles and handguns used by elite forces around the globe.

At last count, I own 10 different Sig models and decided to highlight what I consider the five best Sig handguns out there.

1. Sig P210. For decades, this single-action, single-stack, full-size 9mm pistol was the standard by which all other service pistols were judged, and for good reason. Meticulous craftsmanship and assembly in Switzerland for the Swiss Army meant that the P210 was accurate and reliable, but unfortunately it was limited to Swiss military contracts and its scarcity on the common market kept it priced out of the realm of the average shooter.

When the manufacture moved to Germany, the pistol still commanded higher prices than any other factory pistol on the market. Yet the desirability was still there and a friend of mine in the VIP protection sector noted that this was the pistol he carried when he could not have access to a carbine, as it was accurate out to 100 yards.

Ultimate Tactical Self-Defense And Hunting Weapon That Doesn’t Require A Firearms License!

Thankfully, Sig announced at SHOT Show 2016 that the P210 would now be made in America as a production piece. At least two versions are in the works, including an improved service model with more user-friendly controls, as well as a target version with adjustable sights and checkered grips.

We have been told that prices will range in the $1,300 to $1,500 realm and that the pistol is still capable of ringing steel at 100 yards and beyond.

2. X-5. The X-5 is built on the legendary P226 platform, except that it is a SAO (single action only) pistol designed for competition, although I know a few people who carry one cocked and locked 1911 style.

Because it was intended as a competition pistol, almost everything on this handgun can be customized, replaced or improved.

The 5-inch barrel length lends to the addition of an oversized rail. The pistol’s sights are fully adjustable and can be replaced with a variety of options. The trigger is adjustable for weight, reset, pre-travel and can be moved 0.4 of an inch forward or to the rear based on the shooter’s hand size or finger length.

We expect to hear the new US-made version announced at this year’s annual NRA Convention.

Sig p220

Sig p220

3. Sig P220 In 1975, Sig unveiled the P220. Based on the P210, some changes were made to make this a more affordable pistol in order to compete for a quality sidearm.

On the surface, the P220 resembles a Browning-style semiautomatic pistol that uses a decocking lever to safely lower the hammer carry with no external safeties. Double-action-only and single-action-only variants have been made as well.

The pistol operates by means of a linkless barrel without locking lugs. Instead, the P220 makes use of an enlarged breech block which holds the slide and barrel as one while firing.

Usually found in 45 ACP and 9mm, Sig released several variants in 10mm in 2015.

4. Sig P320. Released in 2014, the Sig P320 is a striker-fired, polymer framed handgun that is completely customizable to match not only the shooter’s hand but the shooter’s intended use.

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A serialized chassis/fire control unit allows changing from full size to compact size on the frame and interchangeable back straps can allow the pistol to be configured for a variety of hand sizes. Calibers can be configured depending upon the barrel.

This is the pistol for the shooter who only wants to own one handgun, but has a need for different configurations.

A Picatinny rail and SIGLITE night sights round out the package.

5. Sig P229. The P229 is a compact version of the P226 that was designed from the ground up to handle the company’s potent 357 SIG caliber.

A CNC-milled slide of stainless steel was chosen to handle the higher pressures of the new cartridge and its higher velocity as opposed to the stamped slide of its predecessors. This allows the use of a lighter recoil spring.

Used by US Navy Pilots and military intelligence personnel as the M-11A1, it is much more compact than the standard issue Beretta M9.

We could have easily done a Top 10 list to include models such as the P226 (which has influenced at least two of these models), the compact P238, or their now classic line of 1911 pistols, but felt that these five Sigs have raised the bar high enough to give a better overview of the “best of the best.”

What would you add to our list? Share your thoughts in the section below:

If The Grid’s Down And You Don’t Have Ammo, What Would You Do? Read More Here.

Another American Sheriff Warns: ‘If You Are Fearful, Arm Yourself’

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Another American Sheriff Warns: ‘If You Are Fearful, Arm Yourself’

Citizens should arm themselves for protection, says the sheriff of a county where a baffling mass murder took place.

“I can tell you if you are fearful, arm yourself,” Sheriff Charles Reader told The Columbus Dispatch. “If you feel you need to protect yourself or your family, do so and contact the local law enforcement to come and respond to it.”

Reader is the sheriff of Pike County, Ohio, where eight members of the Rhoden family were the victims of execution-style killings. Authorities have no suspects and have not mentioned any motives for the killings. The murders occurred at four different locations.

Extensive marijuana growing operations were found at a number of the Rhoden homes, and investigators have not said whether drugs had anything to do with the killings. Officials did tell CNN that they think the marijuana growing was a complex commercial operation run purely for profit.

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The killings could have been part of home-invasion robberies, because the victims were shot in the head April 22 while they slept. A three-year old and two babies survived the massacre.

“It was a sophisticated operation and those who carried it out were trying to do everything they could do to hinder the investigation and their prosecution,” Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine said of the murders.

The sheriff thinks the rest of the family could still be targets and told them they should be armed. Some local residents agreed with their sheriff.

“This is a different animal, what’s going on here right now,” Pike County resident Dave Brodess told The Dispatch. “A whole family wiped out and not even a trace of evidence left behind.”

The local superintendent of schools, Todd Burkitt, said the incident has shaken the community. He understands the desire to be armed.

“It’s a perfectly rational and logical thing to say, it’s just something you don’t usually have to say,” Burkitt said. “Something tragic and scary has happened in our community, and people do have a right to protect themselves, their homes and their families.”

What is your reaction to the sheriff’s comments? Share your thoughts in the section below:

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3 Alternatives To The AK-47 That Are Simply More Accurate

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3 Alternatives To The AK-47 That Are Simply More Accurate

CMMG Mutant MK47. Image source: thefirearmblog.com

 

The AK-47 is one of those legendary weapons, up there in fame and popularity with the M16, Mini gun, Desert Eagle, Glock and Colt Single Action Army. These weapons are so well known that even non-gun people can recognize them. The AK gained its legendary status from its uniquely Soviet appearance, its widespread proliferation, its place on the nightly news, and the fact that at the end of the day it’s one of the most reliable rifles in the world.

However, the design is definitely a bit dated. The AK is known for its poor ergonomics, its weight, and its lack of accuracy.

Thankfully, we live in a time with an epic level of gun ownership and a fascination with modern defensive rifles like the AK, so nearly any demand can be met. Three companies have seen how popular the AK round is, how easily available the magazines are, and have identified the fact the AK is not the most ergonomic platform.

Let’s take a look at alternatives:

1. CMMG Mutant/MK47

The CMMG rifle company has always been a unique company, producing modern, modular rifles in the AR platform. The CMMG Mutant is the company’s attempt to combine the best aspects of the AR-15 with the best aspects of the AK-47. The platform uses controls almost identical to the AR-15, including the safety placement which is 10 times better than the traditional AK.

My Personal Defender: Low-Cost Way To Defend Yourself Against Low-Life Criminal Scum!

The MK47 uses an ambidextrous magazine release identical to the AK-47, but that’s because it uses AK-47 magazines. The use of AK mags is what separates it from previous incarnations of 7.62 x 39mm AR-15s. The Mutant also uses a much, much bigger bolt, which increased reliability with the weapon.

The full-length handguard keymod handguard is an awesome touch that provides nearly unlimited options for mounting accessories. The flat top upper receiver allows the easy mounting of optics. The MK47 can accept almost all of the same accessories of a traditional AR, such as butt stocks, handguards and trips.

The MK47 is perfect for those like myself trained in the military on the M4/AR platform, but who have a personal preference for the 7.62 x 39mm round. The MK47’s customization is a major factor for some, as well as the ability to easily add an optic without a secondary mount. The MK47 is an excellent design, and its use of popular (and cheap) AK mags makes it an excellent AK alternative.

2. SIG 556R

The original SIG 556 rifle took a lot of inspiration from the AK-47 platform and utilized a bit of Swiss engineering to make a lighter, handier weapon to comply with NATO standardization. The SIG 556 uses a very similar method of operation, but was refined in the ergonomic category, was more accurate and chambered in 5.56.

3 Alternatives To The AK-47 That Are Simply More Accurate

Image source: sigtalk.com

The SIG 556R is a harkening back to the AK design, with SIG’s renowned ergonomics and ease of use. The SIG 556R is chambered in 7.62 x 39, and accepts standard AK-47 magazines. If you haven’t figured it out yet, the R is “SIG 556R” stands for “Russian,” a reference to the AK’s country of origin. The SIG 556R is more modular and comes with a standard handguard that can be swapped with a standard railed or keymod handguard with ease.

The SIG 556R has a flat-top upper receiver to facilitate the mounting of nearly any optics. The safety is also positioned to be much easier to activate than the standard AK safety. The stock is side-folding for easier storage, especially in vehicles. The 556R still uses a gas piston design, one that gives the shooter confidence when it comes to reliability. The design is so simple and easy that it’s reliable even during heavy use and rough terrain.

The SIG 556R also allows the user to adjust the gas system for use with suppressors, something the AK is lacking. The SIG 556R’s use of AK magazines, and its ammunition, makes this an excellent option for those who’ve never cared for the AR platform, and want something a little more modern than the AK platform.

3. PTR 32

This is a rather interesting rifle. Fans of the H&K G3 / 91 know that PTR produces some of the best clones of these weapons out there. They are well built, and certainly up to the high standard set by H&K. The PTR clones are normally in 308/7.62 NATO, but the PTR 32 is in 7.62 x 39mm.

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The PTR 32 is essentially the H&K 91 just rechambered for the Soviet 7.62. This weapon is quite heavy, but has some excellent features. For one, the H&K style sights are wonderful and capable, and the sight radius is nice and long. The forward charging handle is incredibly accessible and can be locked into a notch at the rear of the cocking handle.

The safety is very easy and accessible; like all of these models, it is much better than the traditional AK model. This 9.8-pound rifle absorbs recoil like a champ, and it makes the extra weight worth it. The Gen 2 PTR 32 features a M4 collapsible stock, and a railed foregrip for accessories. The PTR 32 Gen 1 is traditional H&K 91 furniture. The PTR 32 is a Cold War warrior, but it’s an excellent, well-built weapon — a Soviet heart wrapped in a German coat.

AK Now Passe

The AK is still a very viable platform, and it remains one of my favorites. By no means is this a get-rid-of-your-AK article.

However, if you like the round and the available magazines, these weapons are excellent replacements. The AK is going nowhere soon, and that’s evidenced by these three weapons. If the AK wasn’t as popular as it is, these weapon would never exist.

What is your favorite AK alternative? What would you add to the list? Share your thoughts in the section below:

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Is This The Most Versatile And Durable Survival Rifle Out There?

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Is This The Most Versatile And Durable Survival Rifle Out There?

Image source: Pixabay.com

 

When most people think of survival rifles, they picture a compact, lightweight, single shot or semi-automatic rifle chambered for the venerable .22 LR ,or perhaps a drilling chambered for a .22 LR and .410 or 20 Ga.

However, when people think of the AR-15 rifle, they tend to automatically picture a home defense rifle or a US Military battlefield rifle, and certainly not a survival rifle! But, when properly configured, the AR-15 platform does make an excellent survival rifle. In fact, because of its .223 inch bore diameter and a chamber sized for either a .223 Remington or a 5.56 mm NATO cartridge, it makes an excellent choice for medium-size game species such as whitetail deer, feral hogs and wild turkeys at close to medium ranges, as long as the heavier bullet designs are used. On the other hand, it is also easily converted to fire the .22 LR cartridge via one of several different, readily available, drop-in conversion kits and thus, the AR-15 is a survival rifle extraordinaire!

When I think of a survival rifle, four criteria immediately come to mind. First, it must be lightweight so that it is easy to carry. Second, it must be compact so that it is easy to maneuver. Third, it must be extremely durable and well able to withstand the extremes of the elements — as well as harsh treatment and lack of care. Third, it must be able to fire the .22 LR cartridge.

Ultimate Tactical Self-Defense And Hunting Weapon That Doesn’t Require A Firearms License!

While there are several extremely well-designed survival rifles out there chambered for the .22 LR, the AR-15 is a far better choice than any of them, because it is able to fire both a high-powered rifle cartridge and a low-powered one by simply exchanging the bolt with a drop-in replacement, and then exchanging the magazine. Also, by installing a collapsible, skeleton, stock in conjunction with a 14 ½-inch or 16-inch barrel, the rifle becomes both very compact and relatively lightweight. Plus, .22 LR drop-in conversion kits are readily available that will easily enable any AR-15 chambered for .223 Remington or 5.56 NATO to also fire .22 LR cartridges, without making any permanent alterations to the rifle.

Is This The Most Versatile And Durable Survival Rifle Out There?

Image source: Pixabay.com

So, simply by carrying the rifle in its standard configuration chambered for .223 Remington or 5.56 NATO along with a drop-in .22 LR conversion kit, you effectively have two rifles in one that will enable you to harvest game animals, ranging in size from squirrels and rabbits to medium-sized deer and feral pigs. Plus, because the AR-15 was specifically intended to be a battlefield rifle, it was specifically designed to function correctly every time it was needed, even in extremely harsh inclement weather conditions. It also was specifically designed such that all of the internal components can easily be replaced in the field by someone with only a moderate amount of mechanical skill. The AR-15 platform also meets my criteria for a survival rifle that is both extremely durable and very reliable.

Another reason that I feel that this rifle is such an extraordinary survival rifle is because it was specifically designed to be a modular system so that the rifle could be quickly and easily reconfigured to meet the needs of various missions. This has given rise to different manufacturers offering alternate caliber conversion kits in addition to the .22 LR, such as the 6.8mm Remington SPC (special purpose cartridge) or .300 Whisper.

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By adding a second upper receiver/barrel assembly with a 14 ½-inch or 16-inch barrel chambered for 6.8mm SPC or something larger, you would have the ability to harvest larger game animals at much greater distances than you would with the .223 Remington, but you would also retain the ability to hunt medium-size game with the .223 and small game with the .22 LR, simply by sliding two pins out from the lower receiver and then exchanging the upper receiver at will.

If you have never considered the AR-15 to be a viable survival rifle, then perhaps you should take a second look at this amazing modular rifle. Not only is it compact, lightweight and extremely durable, but it can be easily reconfigured to fire any number of cartridges, ranging from low power to high power and thus, it actually makes the perfect survival rifle for hunting wild game species. Plus, if you happen to find yourself in a location inhabited by large, predatory animals, then having an AR-15 as opposed to a .22 LR can provide you with the means to defend yourself if necessary. As you see, the AR-15 is truly a survival rifle extraordinaire!

Related:

5 Overrated Guns You Probably Should Never Buy

Do you agree or disagree? Share your thoughts in the section below:

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Ammunition report

Trick Out A Cheap AR15

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Top Survival Website

The rash of inexpensive ARs clogging gun store shelves right now might not be the greatest battle rifles since the M1903 Top Survival BlogSpringfield, but they can advance well beyond their pay grade with a few mild upgrades that basically undo the cost saving measures installed at the factory.  In addition to cost-saving measures, many entry level ARs will lack a forward assist plunger, and a dust cover.  While the former might never be used by 99% of shooters, the dust cover can come in handy in certain conditions and environments.

By Doc Montana, a contributing author of SHTFBlog and Survival Cache

The Walmart Rifle

But neither should be considered a deal-breaker if you find a brand-name good deal.  A goal here is to put some dollar numbers on what it would take to bring a budget-priced AR up to speed for real-world challenges.

A required assumption here is that a reputable company that builds ARs will make them more affordable though a handful of forge_survival_supply_best_rifleminor shortcuts rather than some massive oversights in quality.  In fact it might take a doubling or even tripling of cost within the product line to get a functionally better barrel or bolt carrier group.  The difference between a $599 and a $1299 AR by the same company will be in the details across three main areas:
1) Those small parts where a few pennies are saved here and there
2) In finishing work done both by machine and by hand especially the trigger group
3) The number of minutes of quality assurance inspections along with accompanying lower standards of acceptability.

Companies known for making better rifles will not make cheap barrels and bolts.  That’s too risky and expensive for them.  Instead they will use the good stuff and cut costs elsewhere.  On the other hand if the AR company is known for inexpensive or poor quality guns with a few or no upper-end firearms in their product catalog, then those better ones are the exception to their rule so upgrading will be, as they say, lipstick on a pig.  Just remember that most folks cannot outshoot their rifles, and don’t worry about if or when your round count will overcome the quality of your AR parts since we’re not pushing theoretical limits here. Just putting a trustworthy AR in your hands for less money.   Before we get started, know that the fun stuff like optics, red dots, weapons lights, covert carry options, drum mags, bipods and suppressors are all fine goals for the financial future but the first principles are first for a reason.

Picky Begging

So to begin, hand select the best inexpensive AR on the shelf.  Or better yet, if the gun store really wants to make the sale, crack Top Survival Blogopen a few boxes in backstock.  Concentrate on the upper and lower receivers mating, the action of the bolt, and alignment of the gas tube any and rails.  There’s no point upgrading if the AR is already damaged goods.  Also avoid fixating on any part that will be swapped out.  Cheap buttstocks might rattle around or require extra force to slice back and forth.  Cheap sights are included to make the rifle work out of the box (a supposed selling point), but since they will soon be tossed into the junk parts box in your shop, don’t waste valuable store time on them.

Related: Magpul P-Mag Torture Test

Next, plan on swapping out the trigger, buttstock, handguard, mag, sights (as needed), and make a few additions while you’re at it.  Each replacement part has an important upgrade purpose, and each addition will take the AR up a pay grade or two in stature and use.  The new parts can be replace all at once or over time.  The point of this article is to give some focus when there you have a gnawing desire to buy a quality sale-priced new AR.  If considering a used one, all bets are off.

Breaking Glass

Triggers are an easy place to both cut costs and raise them.  Inexpensive ARs will often have worse-than-normal triggers.  RatherSurvivalCache.com than spending your day trying to polish up the already crippled fire control mechanism, just get one of the newer but affordable drop-in trigger kits.  While not perfect, the inexpensive kits will put you much closer to the cool kids.  One of the $70 ALG triggers would make a good option, or a Mil-spec enhanced trigger group from Rock River.

Butt Out

The buttstock might seem to work fine, even look mil-spec, but cheaper ARs often have brittle plastic mildly adjustable stocks.  For the cost of a few boxes of ammo, the Magpul OEM stock can be had for less than $40 and will get you up to speed where your stock will work better, feel better, and hold up to abuse especially if your need pummel something or someone with your buttstock.

Hands Off

The hard plastic two-piece tubes that form the handguard on budget ARs are heavy, slippery, and often lack any attachment Top Survival Blogpoints for rails, etc.  Again, the sub-$40 Magpul OEM handguard fits the bill and moves you and your rifle into a more productive tactical position.

Black Box

If your AR came with a Magpul Pmag of any generation, then move on.  But if it came with a no-name metal box, then assume the worst and swap it out with a ~$15 Pmag.  Not all GI-style metal mags are created equal, especially when you know that the chief selling point of the rifle it came with was a low price.  The main points of failure for the cheap mags, assuming they even fit and work in the first place, are with minimally functional followers and springs of marginal quality.

Zero Me

Likely, there will be a standard triangular.  A2 front sight pinned onto the barrel. While the finish work after tumbling out of Top Survival Blogwhat forge or press might be lacking, its function will be much the same as any other factory installed front post.  But the rear sight is another matter.  You might be lucky and the rifle came with a polymer Magpul MBUS. If so, great.  If not but a rear sight was included, take it off and feel its heft. Some weight a ton because cheap does mean light. Further, the adjustments might be coarse and limited.

Also Read: Best Survival Carbine

Since the point of the rifle is to land a projectile on a target from a safe distance away, the sighting mechanism is as important as any other critical part of the gun. Might be the best $40 spent thus far.

Nickels and Dimes

A few additions beyond the basics include an enhanced trigger guard base and Blackhawk single-point sling adapter.  Oh, and a Katrina Riflecouple of AR tools to become more intimate with your rifle. Start with a couple of punches, and an armorer’s tool.  Magpul makes a great enhanced trigger guard for about $9 that will greatly increase the internal space of the trigger guard allowing better and safer operation especially when wearing gloves.  The single-point sling adapter sells for less than $7 and allows you to quickly clip a sling to a spot on the buffer tube, or back on the buttstock.  When placed on the buffer tube, the rifle becomes single-point compatible without an expensive QD mount added on.

Related: DIY Survival Rifle

The last piece of kit to gentrify your AR is to get some Slip2000 gun lube.  I prefer the Slip2000 EWL30 because of its higher viscosity.  Since ARs are known for chain smoking gun lube all day long, the EWL30 puts up the good fight between metal surfaces assuring you that your AR is as healthy as it can be.

Check Please

By adding about $220 to your over-the-counter AR, you will be in great shape to do almost everything anyone buying a budget AR would do.  Given recent AR prices hovering under $600 and some holiday or promotional sales dropping in sight of $500, having a plan to capitalize on the savings but not the functionality will make the decision easier.  Remember, this strategy requires you start with a good foundational AR so keep with the known brands and compare the specifications.  An inexpensive AR from Bob’s Basement Budget Builds might be easy on the wallet today, but it will punish you for years to come.

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Doc Montana
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Mom Gets Shot In Family Accident, And Now She’s The One Facing Jail

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jamie gilt

A gun-rights advocate is facing charges of unsafe storage of a firearm after a shooting accident in which she was the victim. Sheriff’s deputies in Putnam County, Florida charged Jamie Gilt after she underwent surgery.

Gilt was shot by her own 4-year-old son, who picked up a .45 caliber pistol when the two were riding in a truck on the way to pick up a horse on March 8, The Gainesville Sun reported. The boy apparently shot Gilt in the back while she was driving.

Do You Know The Best Way To Hide Your Guns?

“Jamie told the deputy she had been shot by her son,” Captain Gator Deloach of the Putnam County sheriff’s office told the media.

Deputies found the pistol in the backseat of the truck next to a toy dinosaur.

The deputies charged Gilt with unsafe storage of a firearm, a first-degree misdemeanor, while she was in the University of Florida Shands Hospital in Gainesville.

Gilt told deputies that she usually keeps her pistol in a holster but took it off because she was making a long drive. She put the gun on the seat but it apparently fell off and slid to the back, where her son was able to get it.

Do you believe the mom should have been charged? Share your thoughts in the section below:

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The First 5 Glocks You Should Own For Self-Defense

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The First 5 Glocks You Should Own For Self-Defense

Glock 19

 

The Glock pistol has become so entrenched in the firearms realm that I recently heard it was common for outsiders to refer to handguns simply as “Glocks.”

Indeed, the word “Glock” has become synonymous with the word “pistol” or “handgun,” much in the same way that “Colt” or “Smith & Wesson” may have in the past, or even how the term “Buck knife” became a catch-all for “pocket knife.”

Yet with seven different calibers, nine different frame sizes and 12 distinct slide lengths, one Glock does not cover all bases.

There are Glocks made for duty use, competitive shooting, concealed carry and even hunting purposes. Some can fill multiple roles and some are very user specific.

Here, we took a look at all of Glock’s offerings in order to determine a well-rounded battery of five of these handguns for the dedicated Glock owner.

1. Glock 19/23

The G19 or G23 is a compact offering with a shorter barrel, slide and frame than the standard models 17 and 22. The main difference between the G19 and the G22 is the caliber, with the G19 being chambered in 9mm like the larger G17, and the G23 chambered in 40 S&W like the G22.

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For a pistol that is a “Jack-of-all-trades” it does not get much better than the G19/G23. It is large enough to serve as a uniformed duty pistol, small enough to carry concealed and the G19 holds 15 rounds in its factory magazines. These pistols also take the magazines of their larger counterparts.

2. Glock 42

The smallest pistol that Glock makes is the G42 chambered in 380 ACP. It runs a little on the large side when compared to other pistols in this caliber, such as the Sig P238, Ruger LCP or Kahr 380, but that slightly longer grip and heavier slide makes for a compact pistol that is accurate, controllable and actually pleasant to shoot.

3. Glock 30S

The First 5 Glocks You Should Own For Self-Defense

Glock 30S

For years we hailed the G30 as the perfect Glock pistol. It was chambered in 45 ACP, held 10 rounds and was accurate and comfortable to shoot.

Die-hard Glock fans took it a step further, customizing their G30s with slides and recoil assemblies from Glock’s slim-line 45 pistol, the G36. The end result was a thinner slide that could fit most of the holsters intended for the similarly sized G19s and G23s.

Glock listened to its customer base and made it a factory offering in the G30S. This is the compact 45 ACP fighting pistol that makes the most sense.

4. Glock 41

Some readers might think we are a few tacos shy of a combination plate for mentioning this offering, as it is chambered in the powerful 10mm auto cartridge.

For years, gun magazine writers have been calling for the death of the 10mm round and proclaiming its recoil is too powerful for use in most handguns for comfort or fast follow-up shots.

That may be the case with the smaller Glocks, such as the compact Model 29 with its light weight and short barrel. However, the G40 sports a 6-inch barrel, a Gen 4 grip frame and a heavy slide that has a mass capable of absorbing nearly all the recoil of this potent chambering.

The longer barrel increases the velocity of most 10mm loads to push ballistics closer to that of a 357 Magnum or lower end 41 Magnum.

Ultimate Tactical Self-Defense And Hunting Weapon That Doesn’t Require A Firearms License!

When we mentioned hunting with a Glock, we had this pistol in mind and it is rapidly becoming a favorite of feral hog hunters throughout the United States, especially when equipped with an electronic sight.

5. Glock 43

We tested the G43 before its official release in early 2015, and at first had contempt for the pistol, finding it too small for our hands, too large for pocket carry and we were convinced we were going to hate it.

Then we actually shot it and completely changed our mind.

The G43 was one of the most accurate out-of-the-box pistols we had ever fired, especially for a Glock. It may have taken a few years of tinkering to get it just right, and critics claimed Glock was a day late and a dollar short when the G43 hit the market, but those critics are eating those words as the pistol outperforms platforms put out by Smith & Wesson, Ruger and other competitors.

These five pistols from Glock offer a multitude of options from basic home or self-defense to concealed carry and even the hunting of dangerous game with the G40. They are definitely our choices for a range of options.

Which Glocks would you take off the list? What would you add? Share your gun advice in the section below:

Pump Shotguns Have One BIG Advantage Over Other Shotguns. Read More Here.

The Woman’s Jargon-Free Guide To Buying Your First Gun

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The Woman’s Jargon-Free Guide To Buying Your First Gun

Image source: Bloomberg

The man sat on a chair across the table from me, a phone cradled to his ear, hunched over the clipboard in front of him in an effort to block out the din of the packed arena. He carefully spelled out the letters of my name and address to someone on the other end of the line, and went on to fill in other details.

He was reading the words off a federal form 4473 which I had just filled out and handed back to him. I stood waiting in nervous and happy anticipation while the gun dealer ran my information through the National Instant Criminal Background Check System, or NICS.

It wasn’t that I was afraid of anything bad turning up. My background is about as squeaky clean as they come. It wasn’t that I am anti-government, either. It is indeed true that I would rather not share any more information with the government than I have to, including whether or not I drink raw milk or keep farm animals and whether or not I own a gun, but had already resigned myself to the fact that this is the way it’s done.

It was that it was my first-ever gun purchase. Although I am not new to guns — not brand new, anyway — I had never shopped for and purchased one for my own use.

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I am not really a “gun person.” But when my husband and I took up homesteading I began to see the usefulness of gun ownership in a whole new light. My husband taught me the basics on his hunting gun — just enough that I might be able to defend myself and my barnyard if I absolutely had to — but I recently began to consider taking it a step further.

The idea of having my own gun crept up on me. It seemed preposterous at first. I mean — me?!  Owning a gun?! My husband and I discussed it, and the conversation got serious last summer when livestock predation was on the rise. The firearms available to me were not adequate — they were either too big for my comfort or not accurate enough for the job at hand.

And it wasn’t just the animals that I became concerned about protecting. The world is changing, even way out in rural America where I live. It is becoming the kind of world where we hear about meth labs and opiate addictions in communities startlingly near to us. Violent crimes, home invasions, and robberies are no longer restricted to metropolitan areas.

An elderly lady was beaten in her own home in the next village over from me. Another neighbor had a man walk right into her house — and when confronted, he pretended to have mistaken it for someone else’s home and left. These are anomalies, but that may not always be the case.

I walked into a gun shop one day and began my education. My husband is savvy about guns, but I wanted to learn on my own.

I had done enough research to know I wanted a small shotgun. Between the two generally standard sizes — 12-gauge and 20-gauge — I knew I would prefer the smaller 20-gauge. Shotguns come in an even smaller “410 bore” as well, and I asked some questions that would help me compare and contrast the two smaller options.

Gun aficionados had advised me that a multiple shot is a better choice than single, and that a pump action is best.

The Woman’s Jargon-Free Guide To Buying Your First Gun

Image source: Pixabay.com

What I learned at that first gun shop is that 20-gauges are a lot more common and only slightly more expensive than 410s, but ammo for the smaller gun is a lot more expensive.

“A lot depends on what you’re going to use it for,” the guy explained. If I was going to do a lot of target shooting, cost of ammo was a factor. If it was strictly for the occasional varmint or for self-defense, or “for the house,” as the salesman phrased it, cost of ammo was irrelevant.

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The way he talked so casually about a woman owning a gun for self-defense, as if it were the most normal thing in the world, made me feel less self-conscious about it.

He had a wide variety of actions on hand to show me, as well. The “action” of a gun is basically how the shell — in a shotgun — or the bullet — in a rifle or handgun — gets into the chamber. There was a “break action,” where the end of the barrel snaps open and the shells are loaded into side-by-side chambers, and a “lever action” which loads the shell when a handle under the barrel is flipped forward and back. He also showed me pump action guns, which are generally able to store four or five shells in the magazine and load them one by one when an outer casing on the barrel is slid forward and back. There were single shots as well, which is just like it sounds — one shell is loaded right into the chamber.

There are also bolt actions made, but they don’t appear to be common. There are also semi-automatics, but the guy could tell I wasn’t ready to look at or pay for anything like that. Later in my shopping experience, I did consider the merits of semi-automatics. These are firearms which, once the first shell or bullet is loaded, the next one pops into the chamber automatically as soon as the first is shot out. I found a lot of them on the market, which may be because they are popular, or possibly because they are significantly more expensive — usually about twice the price — and the cheaper choices get snapped up first.

I had to chuckle at the pink camo 20-gauge pump shotgun he showed me, regarding it as a novelty. Little did I know in those early shopping stages that — pardon the pun — targeting women is a burgeoning trend. Pink is in!

As a busy homesteader who rarely leaves the farm, there wasn’t much time to focus on gun shopping. In the eight months that slipped past between the time I first made the decision to purchase a firearm and finally doing so, it seemed to me that the selection diminished and the prices rose a bit.

The Woman’s Jargon-Free Guide To Buying Your First Gun

Image source: Pixabay.com

Wandering in and out of gun shops intermittently throughout that period of time, I felt that as a woman shopping alone for a gun, I was mostly treated courteously. I did encounter one gun shop owner who got pretty overbearing and pedantic when I told him I was new to guns. Later, when I went back to the same shop with my very knowledgeable husband, the man was less obnoxious.

I live in a state where guns are easily and legally sold between individuals, and I spent some time exploring that option. By the time I started looking at online classifieds, however, I had come to the realization that a regular-sized gun would not suit me. After handling dozens of guns at shops and a few friends’ guns, it was clear that I needed a short stock at the very least, and perhaps the whole firearm needed to be small.

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My husband advised me against a couple of brands — not because there’s anything wrong with them, but just not ones he likes. Factoring that into my search for a youth sized model 20-gauge pump action at a reasonable price, within a reasonable driving distance, made for slim pickings in the personal sales realm.

I ended up finding what I wanted at a gun show. I walked a little taller as I carried my purchase out of the arena, my receipt handy in case security had any questions at the door and almost a little crestfallen when they didn’t.

It can be intimidating to consider buying a gun if you are new to them, and difficult to know where to begin. Based on my experience, I would encourage anyone in that situation to give it a try. Do not be afraid to shop on your own, and treat each encounter as an opportunity to learn, but follow up with your own common sense research and evaluation. Give yourself permission to be new, and do not accept being judged for inexperience or trepidation. No one has the right to treat you as if being uncomfortable around guns is a character flaw — we all start somewhere. If you do have someone in your life whom you trust and is comfortable with guns, get that person’s advice before you make your final choice if you can.

And above all, be safe, and get trained. This article is a about the fun and challenges of buying a gun, and not about safety and training. But please don’t interpret that to mean that those things are not important — they are absolutely crucial and should not be dismissed or minimized.

Whatever your style and whatever your choice, may your journey into gun ownership be fun, productive, and safe.

What advice would you add for women shopping for a gun? Share it in the section below:

Pump Shotguns Have One BIG Advantage Over Other Shotguns. Read More Here.

The Best Upland Shotguns You Can Buy For Around $500

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The Best Upland Shotguns You Can Buy For Around $500

Image source: Pixabay.com

 

There is perhaps no firearm as personal to a hunter, besides the deer rifle, as the shotgun used to take upland game birds. An upland shotgun, like the deer rifle, is truly an extension of the hunter – like a unique signature, as distinct to him as a thumb print. Sure, there are millions of the same model of many shotguns in circulation, but every ding, scratch and memory tells the story of that firearm.

Upland bird hunting is a terrific way to put meat on the table, and it provides hours of good, clean fun for yourself and others. Upland hunting is a challenge, and you need a fast-pointing, light and handy firearm to hunt birds. You also need the skill to pair with the shotgun, as birds are unpredictable and can fly in every direction.

Of course, upland hunting equipment, like any other hunting gear, can be quite costly. The two most expensive parts of any upland gear will be your hunting dog (if you run a gun dog) and your shotgun. I am not going to talk to you about man’s best friend today. We’re talking guns. And if you are like me, you probably don’t have a few thousand dollars just laying around to purchase an Italian gun. We will take a look at some excellent upland shotguns for the hunter on a budget, all for around $500.

The Classics

Some very attractive options for upland hunters are used classic shotguns. These models include Remington Model 10s, Browning A5s, Winchester Model 12s, and the like. While some of these fetch premium prices, others can still be found for under $500 at many pawn and gun shops.

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Guns such as the Model 12 Winchester or the Browning A5 are certainly plentiful, while others are much rarer and harder to find.

The Model 12 is as fine a pointing shotgun as you can find, and a well-broken-in gun will have an action that is as smooth as silk. You can still find good examples of these guns under $500, but you will have to hunt for such deals.

The Best Upland Shotguns You Can Buy For Around $500

Image source: Pixabay.com

The A5 is just as common, and for many decades was the semi-auto that all semi-autos were measured against. The A5 was commonly used by both waterfowl and upland hunters as really the only option for a reliable semi-auto. Like many firearms brought into production in the early 20th century, it was built heavy. The action is recoil-operated, and every pull of the trigger will remind you of that.

Among other classics that are sure pointers are the Remington Models 10 and 31, both of which are pump action classics that can still be found for under $500. An Ithaca Model 37, still produced, is a fine classic to take to the field and has dropped many grouse and pheasant.

Other options are the plethora of used Stevens, Savage, Remington, Browning and other break-action, single- or double-barrel shotguns. Break action tend to be the go-to shotgun in the upland hunting world, as they are quick to point and light to carry. I hunted for years with a beat-up single shot Stevens that pointed like a dream.

New Guns

When it comes to new guns, there are many options available for today’s upland hunter. From pump guns to over/unders, they are available at many price points.

Pump Shotguns

If you are going even to consider a pump shotgun, I suggest you look at one for more than just the purpose of upland hunting. A pump gun is the ultimate utilitarian firearm (home defense, squirrel, waterfowl, deer hunting), and with that in mind I have only two that I recommend: the Remington 870 and Mossberg 500. Both are under $500, and both are stranded-on-a-desert-island reliable.

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They come in a wide range of options, chambering and barrel lengths. I have both guns, and neither one has ever once failed me.

While not as fast pointing as some of the lighter doubles and semi-autos, these two guns will get you in the game fast, and can be used for much more than upland and bird hunting.

Semi-Autos

It can be a tricky thing to find a good semi-auto for under $500. Unless you are going to buy used, you have few options that I would really advise spending dough on.

I will, however, recommend the CZ 912 and 712 shotguns. These shotguns retail for around $490. Both have good reliability and have been torture-tested up to 1,000 rounds without cleaning. Sure, there have been some lemons but overall the reliability of these guns is what you would expect out of a much more expensive shotgun.

Break Action

It’s hard to go wrong with a Harrington and Richardson break action Pardner shotgun, but with H&R/New England ceasing production last year, new guns are hard to find. Still, you can find them for under $200, giving you a fast-pointing single shot 16, 20 or 12 gauge that does well for upland.

Another option is Stoeger Condor, which is an import. The Stoeger is a no-frill over under that points, shoots and can take a little abuse. It can be had for around $450. The Stevens 555 over/under is another option for double gun fans, and points well. It is a little north of $500, hovering around the $550 mark.

What shotguns would you add to this list? Share your tips in the section below:

Learn How To ‘Live Off The Land’ With Just Your Gun. Read More Here.

9 Ways To Defend Yourself Without A Gun

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9 Ways To Defend Yourself Without A Gun

Image source: wildernessarena.com

Concealed carry is on the rise, but, unfortunately, we may not always have access to firearms for self-defense.

Below are nine different items that can be used effectively as self-defense weapons. These tools are also small and lightweight so you can carry them easily and discreetly with you wherever you go.

1. Knife

This is probably the first weapon besides a gun that comes to mind. The knife, whether it be a small pocket knife or a larger, fixed-bladed one, is a very commonplace tool because almost everybody has at least one or two of them. While larger knives can draw attention to you, there are plenty of smaller knives that can be easily concealed on your person. I recommend a folding knife with a serrated blade that can be opened and closed quickly.

2. Tactical pen

While it’s true that any pen can technically be used as a stabbing weapon, tactical pens are better for this purpose. Tactical pens differ from regular pens in that they are constructed out of a very durable metal and the end of the pen has a sharp edge that can be used for protection.

3. Pepper or wasp spray

Both pepper and wasp spray are non-lethal weapons that serve as effective deterrents because they inflict significant irritation to the mouth and eyes.

While the active ingredients don’t typically lose their sting and can be stored for a long time, keep in mind they don’t perform well in all conditions, such as rainy weather.

4. Flashlight

9 Ways To Defend Yourself Without A Gun

My Personal Defender

A durable flashlight — such as a My Personal Defender — will hit hard and give you lots of reach, allowing you to fend off assailants with something that has the “punch” of a baseball bat.

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The My Personal Defender actually has a telescoping feature that extends it to more than a foot.

5. Stun gun

A stun gun is going to do just as the name suggests and buy you some time to get away to safety. While they are often designed to look like traditional guns, many models are designed to not look like weapons and can be carried discreetly, without drawing attention to yourself. They also work in the rain whereas pepper or wasp spray do not. Of course, they aren’t legal in all states.

6. Keychain knuckles

Keychain knuckles are easily the most effective self-defense weapon that can be attached to your keychain. They have sharp edges and are constructed out of a virtually unbreakable plastic. In addition, they are very lightweight and deliver a brutal punch.

7. Belt

The belt is one of the most common items, and it can be used just as well for self-defense as it can for holding up your pants, but only if you have the right kind of belt and know what you’re doing.

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The metal buckle not only delivers damage to an opponent, but can keep him or her at bay if you’ve wrapped the other end around your fist.

8. Umbrella

Just as there are certain pens that are built for self-defense, there also are umbrellas that are built for the same reason. The difference between self-defense umbrellas and regular ones is that the former are constructed out of a fiberglass material that is both lightweight and offers the same hardness as steel.

9. Rock

If you have literally nothing else to use as a self-defense weapon, look for a rock. You can pick up a rock with a sharp edge to use as a knife-like weapon, or a rounded one to use as a club in your hand.

What items would you add to this list? Share your thoughts in the section below:

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The Best Used Budget Pistols You Can Buy (For Around $300)

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The Best Used Budget Pistols You Can Buy (For Around $300)

CZ-75. Image source: wikipedia

If you’re into self-defense, one item that cannot go overlooked is the budget-priced handgun. You might treasure your $800 Sig P226 or custom 1911, but there are times when something else is more appropriate.

We are not talking about “cheap pistols made from spurious materials,” but rather proven platforms that can be had for a fraction of the price of new state-of-the-art handguns. The reasons for these types of firearms are many, and we will examine each one of them.

In today’s day and age, not everyone has the means to buy a $1,000 pistol and heap the same amount in custom work on top of it. For the average working-class shooter who has to provide for a family, make the rent, factor in car repairs or gas to work, there is simply a matter of balancing the household budget — and the difference between a few hundred dollars can look like financial ruin.

But there are many other reasons you should consider a budget pistol. For starters, it could be stolen. This is more the idea of: “If my handgun is stolen out of my car or luggage, do I want to be out $1000 or $350?”

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My advice: Don’t leave a firearm in a vehicle. For many years I did (a police trade-in Smith & Wesson Model 6906) and one fateful day it was stolen. However, some people insist on doing this and in those cases a cheaper alternative is preferable.

Another consideration: Should your pistol be used in self-defense, depending upon the jurisdiction, it may be taken away from you as evidence. In the day and age of Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, it may bring friends or family members of the assailant to your door looking for revenge. It makes sense to have another alternative, if necessary.

So What Are We Talking About?

Ten or 20 years ago, this would have been about the “police revolver.” Nowadays, though, those old police trade-in revolvers are appreciating as collector’s items and some of our budget handguns may do that as well, but this is not a collector speculation article. This is about choosing something viable to save your life.Beretta

Beretta

The Best Used Budget Pistols You Can Buy (For Around $300)

Beretta 92 FS Image source: Wikipedia

The hottest handgun of the 1980s has been turning up as a “police trade-in” from a variety of sources. One of the best deals is the Beretta 92S that were former Italian police pistols. These double-action 9mm auto-loaders resemble the same pistols used by the US Military with a few exceptions: a European-style magazine release, different magazines and a safety mounted on the left side only. I have seen these pistols offered as low as $229. It may not be an ideal concealed carry piece, but I would take it over a Hi-Point for home defense any day of the week.

For a little bit more money, genuine Model 92 FS pistols have been coming in from various departments that are a little rougher condition-wise, but the upgrades such as night sights, the ambi-safety and the US mag release puts them in the $300-$400 range.

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On the smaller side, various Beretta model 84s and 85s in 380 ACP have been turning up from former Israeli police service. A seven-shot 380 like the Model 85 for $300 may not sound very attractive, as these pistols run on the large size, but the Model 84’s double-stacked magazine holds 13 rounds.CZ

CZ

From CZ and Tanfoglio there are a number of double-action pistols hitting the surplus market for the same price point as the Berettas. Like the Berettas, they can be had from Aim Surplus, Southern Ohio Gun and CDI Sales.

The CZ75 is a classic design that is reliable, and spare parts and magazines are always in supply. Even if an actual CZ75 is not available, the Italian-made Tanfoglio clones, sometimes imported by EAA, can be had for very reasonable prices. Likewise, there are the reliable Jericho pistols made in Israel that operate on the same principle.

I have found the Tanfoglios as cheap as $225 in a little rougher shape finish-wise with some minor pitting, but this is for a dependable and accurate pistol, not an heirloom piece intended to be left in the safe.

Others

Working guns can come from the ranks of Glock, SIG and Smith & Wesson that were former police pistols. The prices may run a little higher, but magazines and spare parts are still widely available for these fine handguns. Some may show holster wear or have department markings on them, but they are usually just a casualty of either a department upgrade to a new caliber or more modern generation.

There are lots of options out there and while it might be comforting to have several high-end pistols at your disposal, do not be so quick to turn your nose up at a bargain priced pistol that is still completely functional and relevant.

What pistols would you add to the list? Share your advice in the section below:

Pump Shotguns Have One BIG Advantage Over Other Shotguns. Read More Here..

The Dirt-Cheap Survival Ammo You’ll Want In A Crisis

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The Dirt-Cheap Survival Ammo You’ll Want In A Crisis

Image source: thehighroad.org

If you are preparing for any contingency, whether simply surviving a disaster or getting ready for the collapse of civilization, there is one ammo you need above all others.

It is the .22 long rifle (.22 LR).

I discovered the .22 rather late in my shooting career. Growing up in New York City did not afford me the simple pleasure of going into the woods with a .22 like millions of other youngsters. Our first firearms as teenagers were the M16A2, M249 SAW and M1911, courtesy of the US Marine Corps.

We dismissed the .22 LR as something a child would shoot. We were content with center-fire cartridges in both rifle and pistol until it was pointed out how cheap and available .22s were. That may not always be the case these days, but in the mid-1990s it was true enough.

Admittedly, the .22 LR is not the best choice for a self-defense scenario. This is due in part to the finicky nature of certain brands of ammunition as well as certain firearms chambered in .22 LR and its marginal ballistics.

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However, in a true survival situation you often need a firearm for more than self-defense or big-game hunting.

One of the things we saw after Hurricane Sandy was that the flooding drove rats, mice, possums and other vermin from their lairs and into the habitats of people. For this reason alone, a .22 LR pistol or rifle is a necessity.

Hunting big game animals with a rim fire round is illegal throughout most of the US because the round typically lacks the power to kill a large animal humanely when shot at a distance. Rounds that miss the intended target or penetrate can pose a hazard to others for up to a mile.

In all actuality, a .22 LR is effective on big game with proper shot placement. More than one poacher has been caught using a .22 LR since its invention, and ranchers routinely slaughter their cattle for butchering with a single shot.

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Image source: wikipedia

Likewise, .22 can be suitable for self-defense, particularly when fired from a rifle yielding greater accuracy and improved velocity.

In a genuine survival scenario, many people will take refuge outside the cities and rely on nature for food. This has the potential to severely decimate local deer herds. Stockpiles of full-sized rifle calibers will be useless to hunt smaller sources of food, such as squirrels.

Speaking of stockpiles, the small size and weight of the round allows them to be stored more easily than center-fire ammunition. For example, 1,000 rounds weigh less than three loaded AR-15 magazines.

Above all else, the .22 LR is quiet and can be easily suppressed with a silencer if you have one available to you (and if it’s legal where you live).

Keep in mind that when choosing a firearm you should consider the user’s abilities. For example, we find the various Ruger target pistols to be accurate and reliable, but we are terrible at getting them back together (tearing them down is the easy part). So I would not not include one in my preps.

On the other hand, I prefer the Ruger 10/22 rifle and have found a Beretta Model 71, Smith & Wesson Model 41 and Smith & Wesson Model 17 to be my personal favorites from an accuracy, reliability and maintenance standpoint.

If you have a few .22s in your possession, you are way ahead of the curve. If you have not considered the full scope of their utility, you may want to revisit them.

Are you a .22 long rifle fan? Or is there a different gun you’d prefer? Share your thoughts on the .22 LR in the section below:

Pump Shotguns Have One BIG Advantage Over Other Shotguns In Self-Defense. Read More Here.

This Week’s Best Survival Posts – December 27th

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At Expert Prepper we’re committed to bringing you the best survival posts and preparedness information. There was a lot of great stuff out there this week, from survival gear reviews to breaking news and the latest and greatest survival tips. Check out this weeks best survival posts below: VID: How to poo in the woods,Because […]

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School Bans Star Wars Shirts Because Of Anti-Gun Policy

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School Bans Star Wars Shirts Because Of Anti-Gun Policy

Colton Southern

Even pictures of fantasy weapons are banned under some schools’ zero-tolerance policies. A seventh grader in Texas was told to cover up a T-shirt because it had a picture of a Star Wars stormtrooper with a laser gun on it.

“You’re talking about a Star Wars T-shirt, a week before the biggest movie of the year comes out,” the boy’s father, Joe Southern, told TV station ABC 13. “It has nothing to do with guns or making a stand. It’s just a Star Wars shirt.”

Administrators at George Junior High School in Texas told Southern’s son, Colton, to cover up a Star Wars: The Force Awakens T-shirt because it has a picture of a fictional character, an Imperial Stormtrooper, aiming an imaginary weapon on it. A spokesperson for the Lamar Consolidated District said the shirt violated a dress code than bans “symbols oriented towards violence.”

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Southern was not told to get rid of the shirt. Instead, he was instructed simply to zip up his jacket to cover it up. Southern’s dad is perplexed because his son had worn the shirt to school several times prior to this, without incident.

“He’s a Boy Scout, active in church, volunteers at Brazos Bend State Park,” Joe Southern said of his son. “There’s not a violent bone in his body. He’s just an excited kid for the movie.”

School administrations could have suspended him but chose not to do so.

Parents had better be careful what their kids wear to school these days. Even clothing that’s been around for decades can violate some zero-tolerance policies.

Do you believe the student should have been required to cover his shirt? Share your thoughts in the section below:

Awaken Your Child’s Love Of History And Put God Back Into History! Read More Here.

Bug Out Long Term (B.O.L.T) Pistol: Part 1

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SHTF Handgun

To B.O.L.T. is to Bug Out Long Term.  As a complement to the Katrina Rifle, I decided to assemble a B.O.L.T. Pistol.  The Survival SHTFrequirements, as they say, are similar but different from the Katrina Rifle in that the B.O.L.T. Pistol must be a reliable lightweight small-caliber semiautomatic with optic and suppressor.  B.O.L.T. is my nickname for a version of bugging out.  Since the term “Bug Out” means everything from fleeing a house fire to planning for three days of isolation during a hurricane, to hitting the hills forever, I decided I needed at term to describe a Bug Out Kit that says what it is.  The B.O.L.T. kit does not include comforts or survival jewelry. Redundancy is a luxury practiced only in very narrow circumstances.  With quality, I’m gambling that “One is one, and one is one.”

By Doc Montana, a contributing author of SHTFBlog and Survival Cache

.22, 23. Whatever It Takes

Just as a .22 Long Rifle rifle is an optimum utility bug out gun, so too is the .22 Long Rifle pistol.  It is not THE optimum choice, Best Bug Out Pistolbut AN optimum choice.  With a full resume of light weight, low recoil, simple operation, and about nine rounds per ounce, the .22 is heavily suited for tool-use in hunting and protection.  Most critters larger than a skunk will either be picked off early in a SHTF scenario, or move to high country and out of reach except from the most determined and skilled hunters.

Pound for pound, the .22 LR is an exceptional choice for a B.O.L.T. Lots of folks immediately look towards law enforcement or military weapons for their B.O.L.T. guns.  Those black weapons have their strengths as offensive tools when you are running to the fight instead of away from it.  The Katrina Rifle had offensive capabilities as well as hunting talents.  But a .223 round weighs almost four times as a .22 LR. And the concept of a B.O.L.T. means you intend on carrying plenty of ammo to get you started in the next adventure.

Here’s a breakdown of the average number of rounds in one pound:
12 gauge: 10 shells
.308: 19 rounds
.45: 21 rounds
.40 S&W: 28 rounds
.223: 37 rounds
9mm: 38 rounds

And the wonderful .22 Long Rifle: 140 rounds per pound! So whether bangs per pound or bangs per cubic inch, the humble .22 long rifle wins.  Back when Stevens Arms & Tool Company basically invented the .22 cartridge, there was no anticipated SHTF, no Bug Out gun, and no real concern that an EMP or Grid Down situation would cause God-fearing Americans to high-tail it into the boonies.  But ever since then the .22 Long Rifle has been responsible for plenty of game getting, defensive protection, and an unfortunate number of folks had that their last thought be the feeling of a .22 bullet entering their skull, heart, or other essential piece of anatomy.

The .22 is “real” out to 100 yards.  Not a .308 by any means, but certainly a dangerous opponent if grappled with whether by a prairie dog or mule deer eyeball.  Sure, if everything is an option, than one would choose something other than the .22, but when a single handful of ammo holds a hundred bangs, you need to seriously consider the .22 as an enemy of fate given its large potential and minuscule size.  Of course it has it’s limits including elephant skin, car doors, house walls, and thick outerwear, but when line-of-sight to a vulnerable target is on the menu, the .22 is a killer. Period.

Supersonic, the .22 carries the potential of death out beyond its accuracy. Subsonic, the .22 wreaks havoc long before anyone knows where the muzzle is pointed.  If you have to, think of it more of a force-addition than a full on force multiplier.  Yes, I would rather have nine millimeters of lead and metal jacket punch through the dermatitis of the bad guy, but six months down the Warrior’s Road I doubt I’ll still have pockets full of shells if I have to pop off even just a few per day.  In the volume of a beer can you can have over 600 .22 bangs.  In the volume of a shoe box, you can have enough  ammo to get your name in bold on a terrorist watch list.  So when push comes to shove, you need to get your ducks in a row and make decisions based on the short term realities of long term survival.  And that includes both calibers of the twenty-two variety as well as those eighty-eight-thousandths of an inch thicker.  Don’t get caught splitting hairs here.  Flying metal is flying metal. If it lands in the wrong place, it’s game over. Make fun of the .22 if you want, but when bullets fly, you cannot argue with lead.

Also Read: Bug Out Bullet Bottles

Bang for bang, a .22 LR must be part of any B.O.L.T. kit. Which brings up another point. If BOLTing, your .22 will get a workout both in utility-carry and gross number of rounds down range. That means quality and performance of the firearm and all components is critical because there is no point in carrying thousands of rounds for one gun of questionable lifespan.

The magic about the particular bug out pistol highlighted here is that it’s versatility is unlimited.  Not to spoil the ending, but building on a lightweight alloy and polymer frame is a full tune-up of high-end mechanical upgrades, topped off with a top rail red dot sight essentially eliminating sight radius from the aiming equation. Oh, and then there is the suppressor. But I’m getting ahead of myself.

Outside In

The starting point for this B.O.L.T. gun adventure is a late model Ruger 22/45 Lite.  As a semiautomatic of proven design, the Ruger action will eat anything for dinner and put lead downrange all day long for weeks before hitting the shower. With its aluminum barrel shroud filled with “shark gills” that cool the stainless steel threaded pipe and cuts the belly fat, the 22/45 Lite is an exceptional choice for anyone in the market for a .22 auto pistol regardless of the end use.

But alas, the 22/45 Lite is not perfect. Like all Ruger autos, it has some idiosyncrasies that can drive a shooter crazy.  From the fragile and obnoxious “LCI” or loaded chamber indicator, to the dysfunctional relationship between magazine seating and bolt closure, to the pot metal firing pin, and the unbelievably bad iron sights, the 22/45 is in need of some serious TANDEMKROSS upgrades.

Also Read: The Katrina Rifle

Upgrading many of the parts of any gun when done by the owner has the side effect of increasing the intimacy with the firearm. Survival PistolWay too many gun owners are fearful of putting screwdriver to screw, wrench to bolt and punch to pin on their favorite bullet launchers. But that’s how we learn. The AR-15 is an excellent playground for the curious, but also a great way to shoot springs across the room and detents into the ceiling. Whether grip, buffer tube, or safety selector, we’ve all been there. Pling! What the hell was that? But the result is fearlessness when it comes to pulling apart the gun. The only way to learn is to do it. So scratches be damned, I unrolled the punch set next to my new Ruger ride.

For those just arriving to this party, TANDEMKROSS machines and stamps some of the finest part upgrades for a handful of select pistols including the Ruger 22/45 Lite. TANDEMKROSS offers no less than 30 upgrades and supporting accessories for the 22/45 Lite in particular. In the interest of building the finest lightweight .22 heavyweight, a baker’s dozen TANDEMKROSS enhancements were added to the Ruger including six internal parts and seven external ones.  Not all are built by TANDEMKROSS, but all are recommended and sold by them.

The upgraded internal parts replaced the Loaded Chamber Indicator, the magazine release, extractor, a firing pin, a “Kanewolf” bolt release kit, and a better hammer bushing. The upgraded internal parts include plus-1 mag bumpers, trigger, charging handle, compensator replacing the barrel thread protector, sights, grip, and holster.
Overloaded

Related: Project Squirrel Gun

The TANDEMKROSS LCI basically eliminates the stock loaded chamber indicator. Unfortunately the original plastic protrusion Best Survival Pistolthat signals if a shell is in pipe comes at a cost in the form an actual lever inside the receiver that requires case pressure and careful cleaning. If you local jurisdiction allows you to remove features that both add and subtract safety, the the TANDEMKROSS LCI is a good spend of twenty bucks. In my case, the pin that held the original LCI pin in place was not interested in coming out. It took a drill press and muscle to remove it, but that was all caused by some sloppy tolerances between the steel receiver and the aluminium shroud installed at the Ruger factory.

Take a Mag Dump

The stock mag release on the Lite is not much to write home about. So a larger more pronounced mag release button is needed. Not only for releasing the mag, but also for not releasing the mag. When a button or lever on a pistol is subdued, it affects both the deliberate activation of the feature as well as its accidental activation. When a gun’s control surface is not well matched to the size and natural motion of the human hand, it is at risk of lack of use or unintentional misuse. The TANDEMKROSS Extended Mag Release Button is both longer and more textured making it deliberate to use and possible to ignore. When your mag needs to take a dump, you don’t want to fiddle with the flusher.

The Head of the Pin

By switching the firing pin from heavy soft steel to ultralight and hardened titanium you gain more than just longevity of a critical part, but also a faster moving part given the lower moving mass to strike the primer.  As Isaac Newton noted three centuries ago, F=MA.  That means that Force is the product of Mass times Acceleration.  If the weight of the firing pin spring is a lowered, the same firing spring will cause an increase the pin’s acceleration and thus it’s force of impact on the .22 primer rim. Add in the additional hardness and strength of titanium over steel, and you have a much more effective and long-lasting critical component. So this upgrade is another no-brainer.

Extraction Team

Why is it the extractor is where gun companies save a few pennies?  Luckily the TANDEMKROSS engineers spend some of their life designing a better extractor for the Ruger 22/45 Lite.  By using better steel and a sharper machined hook, the positive grab of the TANDEMKROSS Eagle Claw extractor all but eliminates failure-to-eject (FTE) and stovepipe violations (except with some subsonic rounds while suppressed).  If you are in the market for such a thing, it’s the best ten bucks and two minutes you will ever spend.

You Can Fix Stupid

TANDEMKROSS makes an unusually named upgrade called the Kanewolf.  Carrying the name forward from an acquired product, the Kanewolf upgrade from TANDEMKROSS addresses the ridiculous stock Ruger feature that eliminates the ability of the bolt to snap back or “slingshot” a new round into the breech when a fresh mag is slammed home.  Look, I don’t care why Ruger deviated from the norm, but I’m just glad TANDEMKROSS is here to help.  The Kanewolf upgrade allows you to slap in a new mag then “slingshot” the bolt by giving it a tug backwards before letting it slip out of your fingers and slam home.  Yea, I know that’s how you always do it, but with an off-the-shelf Ruger you need to use the bolt release lever. No, seriously!

Run It On Empty

The final internal upgrade of this Ruger 22/45 Lite is a TANDEMKROSS hammer bushing.  By substitution the factory hammer bushing for the TANDEMKROSS one, the shooter, me in this case, gains additional reliability as well as the ability to fire a shot with the magazine removed. Something just not possible with a stock pistol.  The upgraded stainless steel hammer bushing allows the magazine disconnect to be removed creating a more functional and uniform shooting control set familiar to most, especially us Glock users.  Again, know your local laws to ensure that you don’t disable some obscure gun feature that turns you into a felon.

Outside The Box

The TANDEMKROSS upgrades on the outside of the pistol are just as important as on the inside.  For starters, there is the little issue with the charging handle.  It’s not like an AR15 where there are two bucket holds to the east and west of the bolt. Instead the Ruger has lightly textured grip points that require some significant muscle when a full charge is needed, any slippage causes scraped skin.  By adding a TANDEMKROSS Challenger “Charging Cone” to the back of the stock handle, it is much easier to rack the slide without risk to skin or failure to feed. Other solutions to this problem extend the wings of the handle further west causing the width of the pistol to grow to absurd proportions.  At this rate why not an Eight-ball shift knob. But after just one full charge, the low-drag cone solution makes much more sense and works in all 360 degrees of grab.

Compensate For Something

The threaded barrel of the 22/45 Lite is capped by a thick washer designed with little more in mind than protecting the threads. TANDEMKROSS designed a more functional piece of jewelry to grace the business end of this machine. When properly indexed, the TANDEMKROSS Game Changer Compensator reduces the already small amount of muzzle flip to near zero. And like all good .22 accessories, the Game Changer acknowledges that this filthy little cartridge dirties up anything it touches so large cleaning holes circumnavigate the circumference. To test the effectiveness of the Game Changer, I ran a few mags through the gun with an accelerometer attached to the barrel. Ten shots each comparing the compensator to both a bare muzzle and one with a “silencer” attached.

Mag Force

After more than a century of development, you would think that box magazines would be dialed in by now. Unfortunately, that’sSurvival SHTF Pistolnot the case. The Ruger 22/45 mags lock home with a whisper, and more often than you’d think, the mags just pretends to be seated only to drop free during charging. Again TANDEMKROSS to the rescue. The 22/45 Pro Bumper gives the shooter extra oomph to the mag seating as well as providing 10% more rounds in the mag. While one extra bang over the factory 10 is not huge, it is in the right direction and one of the very few places where you can overload a stock mag.

Also Read: 7 Ruger 10/22 Accessories You Need

Additionally, the Pro Bumper comes with an optional spring to power-up the ejection of the mag when the enhanced mag release button is pushed. Instead of the polite magazine slippage masquerading as a mag ejection, the enhancement spring fires the mag earthwards making damn sure the decision to drop the mag is final. Like most other TANDEMKROSS upgrades, the Pro Bumper becomes indispensably essential immediately. Or as Iike to say, “IEI.”

Victory Rules

Triggers levers are always an easy target, pun intended. TANDEMKROSS is first on the scene with a textured flat trigger Tandemkross pistol upgrades reviewnicknamed the “Victory.” By using a straight lever arm, the tactile relationship between finger pad and anodized aluminum is magnified using leverage and predictable pull even though the rest of the trigger’s guts are factory. TANDEMKROSS addressed over-travel and pre-travel with set screws. Rather than having the trigger flop around in its cage, the set screws lock in the movement range making the Victory trigger more predictable. By diminishing the variability of the trigger feel, the flat face of the Victory trigger improves accuracy by proving the shooter with tactical feedback if the gun is pulling right or left, and eliminates the variability of pull weight depending on how the trigger is wrapped with the finger. Loading the trigger face with your index digit low on the lever gives the perception of a lighter poundage pull keeping the sights on target with less effort. Unfortunately it does not change the spongy two-stage nature of the stock Ruger trigger components, but it certainly minimizes the negative effect.

Stay tuned for part 2!

All Photos by Doc Montana

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The 4 Most Humane Ways To Kill A Backyard Chicken

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The 4 Most Humane Ways To Kill A Backyard Chicken

Image source: Pixabay.com

If you raise livestock for meat, naturally part of that process will be learning how to properly euthanize the animals. However, even if you only keep a few loved pet hens for eggs, you still should understand how to put down a chicken in the event of a severe injury or other emergency.

People who are very sensitive about these things may prefer taking a severely sick or injured chicken to the vet or ask a knowledgeable neighbor to dispatch the animal, but remember that having someone to help you isn’t always going to be possible. If you take on the responsibility of caring for a flock of chickens, you also take the responsibility of having to put down a suffering one if such an event does occur. That goes for any type of livestock and, for some people, even pets if they live in a rural area very far from any veterinarian.

Methods of Putting Down Chickens

Do a simple Google search for how to humanely put down a chicken and you will find a whole slew of different answers — some of which work very well while others shouldn’t be used.

First off, if you are someone completely unfamiliar with euthanizing a chicken, it is easy to fall under the assumption that a “brutal” method must not be humane. For example, using a sharp knife or hatchet to lop off a chicken’s head is often seen as gory and even torturous by some, simply because of the blood. I’ve found many threads in forums about the subject of “humane” euthanasia where the person seems instead to be looking for the best way to kill a chicken with the least participation on their part — even if the method they choose isn’t humane at all.

All The Answers To Every Chicken Question And Quandary …

Here are a list of a few of the most humane methods:

1. Decapitation

Probably one of the oldest methods used, decapitation is a quick death for a chicken when done swiftly. You will need a very sharp, heavy knife/cleaver or a sharpened hatchet, plus someone there to hold the chicken. (You also can use what is called a “killing cone,” which requires only one person.)

Typically, people will use a tree stump as the chopping block. You will want to hammer two nails into the stump, just far enough apart that it will hold the chicken’s head in place. The purpose of the nails is that you can stretch the chicken’s neck slightly (this won’t hurt the bird) so you can get a clean cut. This should all be done very quickly but quietly to ensure the bird isn’t stressed. Have your helper pick up the bird, place the head gently between the nails so the neck is straight, and then chop.

It isn’t a pretty process but this method is quick and humane. It is also fairly fool-proof if you use a sharp knife/hatchet and swing down hard.

2. Cervical dislocation

The 4 Most Humane Ways To Kill A Backyard Chicken

Image source: Pixabay.com

Cervical dislocation, or simply breaking the chicken’s neck, is another method that is humane when done correctly but requires more knowledge and confidence to do correctly compared to decapitation. I cannot stress enough that you must be confident in your ability to use this method correctly. There are many people who actually don’t break the neck completely and this just leads to a painful death for the animal.

There are a couple of ways to do this:

  • Snapping the neck by hand ­– This is obviously a very hands-on approach and therefore not suitable for some people. What you will do is hold the chicken in your left arm, grasp the chicken’s head at the base of its skull (you can feel where the skull meets the neck) and snap the chicken’s head in a down and out movement. This is difficult to describe to in text, so I recommend you watch a video on how to do this or ask for an experienced neighbor or fellow chicken owner to show you. I’ve seen people do this on full-grown chickens, but I am not a very big person so I have only used it on young chickens and older chicks.
  • Using the “Broomsticking” Method – The broomsticking method is done by placing the chicken down on a hard surface between your feet, placing a broomstick behind the chicken’s head (just where you would place your hand), stepping down on the broomstick while simultaneously pulling up the chicken’s back legs to snap the neck. Again, please watch a video or have someone show you before trying this to ensure you do it properly. I haven’t used this method on chickens, but it is what I use for rabbits. It is quick, humane and does allow a smaller person to dispatch an animal that may be too large with the above technique.

Cervical dislocation is easy to learn and does have the benefit of being a bloodless method. However, please refrain from trying to just “wring” the chicken’s neck. There are some people who try simply to grab the chicken’s head with both hands and fling it about or over their head in an effort to break its neck. This is incredibly stressful and painful for the chicken since more often than not this fails. Please use one of the two above methods instead!

3. Use a gun or pellet gun

Another humane method is to use a gun (like a .22) or a pellet gun to dispatch the bird. A pellet gun is often more than enough as long as it is powerful enough. The pellet handguns are quite useful. Typically what I will do is wrap the chicken in a towel, place it on the ground and kneel down over the bird.

Learn How ‘God’s Miracle Dust’ Can Keep Your Livestock Healthy

I will then use a pellet gun close to the chicken’s head to dispatch the bird. This is a very easy method but not doable from those who don’t have a gun/pellet gun.

4. Using a CO2 ‘chamber’

This final method is better suited for chicks, bantam or young adult chickens. It requires more work but some people do prefer it for one reason or another. I recommend reading this article for more information. Some people also use a paintball CO2 canister as well.

Another method that seems to get passed around that is not at all humane is placing a chicken in a bag or box which is attached to a car’s exhaust. This is not humane like CO2 and is a very painful death, with the combination of heat and chemicals. If you are going to use anything, go with the above CO2 chamber or use a different method altogether.

Putting down a loved hen or favorite rooster isn’t an enjoyable process but it is important to know how to do it properly – and is necessary if you are raising chickens for meat. As mentioned before numerous times, it is best to watch educational videos or have an experienced person help you. Some rural vets will even give you advice on how to properly dispatch a chicken at home.

What is your preferred method to kill a chicken? Share your advice in the section below:

If You Like All-Natural Home Remedies, You Need To Read Everything That Hydrogen Peroxide Can Do. Find Out More Here.

hydrogen peroxide report

The Right Way To Teach A Child To Shoot

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The Right Way To Teach A Child To Shoot

Image source: thewellarmedwoman.com

I love my kids. The energy they bring to our home, the warm embraces I receive every morning when they wake, and the joy of watching them learn and grow. All of these things make life beautiful.

I want them to grow up knowing the Lord, following God, valuing life, to be handy with a shovel, able to use a tractor … and a crack shot with a rifle. I desire them to be able to hunt game, dispatch a rabid coyote, and be able to drop a sexual predator with a well-aimed barrage of gunfire. In short, I want my kids to learn not only how to handle a firearm, but to respect that firearm and the responsibility that goes with it, and shoot extremely well.

Safety

As a firearm instructor, my top concern on the range is safety. This has to be our step one as a parent when it comes to teaching our children to handle guns. Every child needs to be taught to respect a firearm. They also need to be taught that a firearm in an inanimate object, and it is only dangerous if in the hands of a dangerous or evil user. My wife and I know a woman who was raised by her parents to fear guns. To this day she is deathly afraid of the sight of a rifle, shotgun or pistol. This should never be our goal as a parent.

Teach your young children to never touch a firearm, except with Mommy or Daddy’s permission. I let my 5 year old handle a firearm unloaded. I am already instilling in her little mind that her finger never touches the trigger until she is ready to shoot, and to keep the muzzle pointed in the safest direction possible. I am always right there when she handles it, and it is always unloaded unless she is firing at a target with my help. Our firearms remain locked up.

Christian Heroes For Christian Kids: This New Project Is Putting God Back Into History!

Our goal should be to see our children become confident, yet not cocky. Respectful, and not fearful. I want to raise my children in such a way that if they were to come across a firearm at a friend’s house someday left out and loaded, my child could safe that weapon — meaning he or she can determine safely if it was loaded or not, and unload and safe the firearm if needed.

I have an example here in my own life. As a teenager, I once came across a potentially dangerous situation at the home of a farmer I knew. I used to hunt and work his property part-time. During deer season one year, the farmer who never practiced the best firearm safety had gone into town with his son. They left a few rifles and shotguns in a common building on the farm fully loaded.  One of their shotguns, a Browning Auto-5, had a round in the chamber, and four more in the tube magazine. The muzzle of the shotgun was completely full of hardened mud and pebbles.

The Right Way To Teach A Child To Shoot

Telegraph

I was aghast at the sight. I had grown up as a hunter and around firearms and I knew my way around them extremely well. I grabbed that shotgun before some of the other part-time employees who were a wee bit reckless came to work. I unloaded the shotgun, and then proceeded to unload the other firearms, a Remington 700 and a Mosin M1991/30. The shotgun with the plugged barrel sure made me feel uneasy, so I raced over to the tool shed, retrieved a cleaning rod and gun oil and gave the barrel a thorough cleaning. By the time the other knuckleheads arrived to work, I had stored the guns in a safe place out of their sight and told my boss. He shrugged as I handed him the ammunition I retrieved, but I knew deep down I did the right thing.

That is how you want to raise your kids to behave around a firearm.

Shooting a Firearm

Never start your kids on a high-powered rifle. I have seen so many idiots — and idiots is too kind a word — hand a youngster a .12 gauge or .30-06 for their first time shooting. When the kid is naturally bruised or knocked on his rear, the adult explodes in rip-roaring laughter. I honestly want to grab the firearm and wrap the barrel around the adult’s neck when I see this.

Learn The Secrets Of A Veteran Hunter As He Demonstrates How To Quickly Field-Dress Game

We should desire to see our kids grow up to love shooting, hunting and the outdoor sports. The first time out should be with light cartridges and small guns. Even a BB gun is great. A .22 is terrific for youngsters. Get them comfortable shooting, and then work on accuracy.

A .22 bolt action is the best tool to teach a child how to shoot. I never let a youngster use a scoped rifle unless they really need one. Start with iron sights and build confidence. Gently teach, and encourage your child. However, be strict with firearm safety. You must never waiver with a stern hand when it comes to safety.

Also, never let your child handle a firearm that they are not capable of handling.  Many of us can remember last year when a firearms instructor in Arizona let a little girl handle a UZI submachine gun with tragic consequences. Let’s not let that happen. Start slow.

If they are going to start deer hunting, why not a light kicker like a .223, which contrary to many armchair gun expert’s opinion, has dropped plenty of deer. If you must go heavier, think a .243 or .7mm-08. A .30-30 can do fine for an older child.

As your child gains confidence, feel free to teach them how to handle larger chamberings. I strongly suggest waiting to introduce the shotgun until they are comfortable enough to handle recoil. I have found many larger 8 and 9 year olds are ready for a youth .20 gauge and turkey hunting.

Stay safe, and God bless!

What advice would you add on teaching a child to shoot? Share it in the section below:

Recommended:

How To Raise A Child Who Loves Hunting

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This City’s New Law Closed EVERY Gun Store (And It’s Headed Your Way, Too)

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This City’s New Law Closed EVERY Gun Store (And It’s Headed Your Way, Too)

Image source: Yahoo.com

Hunters, target shooters, and citizens concerned with defending their homes soon will no longer to be able to buy a gun in at least one United States city.

The last gun store in San Francisco is preparing to close its doors by the end of this month, due to mounting pressure from local leaders and new pending gun sales regulations. High Bridge Arms – a 63-year-old business — has decided that doing business in the city is no longer a viable option.

Steve Alcairo, the shop’s owner, said the decision was reached, at least in part, to protect the privacy of its customers.

The gun shop has become a little famous over the past several years, even attracting celebrities as customers. T-shirts boasting that it’s the “Last Gun Store in San Francisco” have been popular and sold well, even to people outside of the city, Alcairo told NPR.

“We’ve been boxing them and sending them off to different states,” he said.

Alcairo wrote on Facebook, “It’s with tremendous sadness and regret that I have to announce we are closing our shop. It has been a long and difficult ride, but a great pleasure to be your last San Francisco gun shop.”

How To Hide Your Guns, And Other Off-Grid Caches…

The decision to close the store came after local lawmakers garnered intense support for proposals that would require not only the turning over to police the records of ammunition purchases but also to video customers and give that footage to the police. Both proposals have been considered in other American cities.

“We’re getting phone calls: ‘So if I buy a box of bullets from you, are you going to report us to the police department?’” he told NPR.

Although the law does not take effect until after a final vote later this year, expansive media coverage already has scared away customers.

Story continues below video

“I’m not doing that to our customers. Enough is enough,” Alcairo told AP. “Buying a gun is a constitutionally protected right. Our customers shouldn’t be treated like they’re doing something wrong.”

If the new gun control law passes as written, it will usher in the most stringent Second Amendment restrictions San Francisco has passed in two decades.

Vicious New Hand-Held Self-Defense Tool Turns Lethal In Seconds!

Some customers have shopped in the store for much of their lives.

“My wife, she bought her first rifle here. Actually I bought my first handgun here,” said one customer, Steven Walker. “It’s pretty amazing we’re losing this shop.”

The National Rifle Association said the city accomplished its goal.

“Looking at this entire regulatory scheme, it becomes painfully obvious that San Francisco’s intent is to simply make it unfeasible to operate a gun store within the city,” the NRA said in an analysis on its website. “However, city officials should tread lightly when considering more rules. The Second Amendment includes the protection of an individual’s ability to acquire arms.”

Do you fear San Francisco-type regulations are headed to your state? Share your views  in the section below:

There’s A Trick To Navigating Federal And State Gun Regulations. Read More Here.

Hunting Series: Trapping

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Hunting Series – Trapping By Richard Bogath No article series about hunting would be complete without at least mentioning the ancient art of trapping animals for food and fur. While in modern times this is more about income than survival, one must accept the fact that income is a means of survival in the fur […]

The post Hunting Series: Trapping appeared first on Expert Prepper Blog.

Free Fire Friday (Gun Talk) 19 June 2015

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Host Johnny Kempen broadcasts live from the wilds of Alaska about all things gun related. Call in using +1 (213) 943-3444 when the show is live every Friday at 6pm Pacific/ 9pm Eastern to ask questions and participate in the show. Call in and participate!

Click widget below to listen.

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Free Fire Friday (Gun Talk) 12 June 2015

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Johnny is back after a few weeks on the Yukon River! Host Johnny Kempen broadcasts live from the wilds of Alaska about all things gun related. Call in using +1 (213) 943-3444 when the show is live every Friday at 6pm Pacific/ 9pm Eastern to ask questions and participate in the show. Call in and participate!

Listen below.

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