Revision Sawfly Review

Maybe you don’t even wear or think of wearing some eye pro until you actually catch something in the eye. Like ear protection you are instantly reminded of how dumb you just were the moment you are caught without it.

The pair of EyePro’s that we got from Revision were the Sawfly High-Impact Polarized Deluxe. I am actually really happy they were the polarized versions. The glasses I normally wear for our reviews are prescription and polarized. Once you wear polarized, you kind of can never go back unless your wants are purely for fashion (you hipsters know who you are). I have worn everything from Aviators to Wraparounds to “fashionable” names and frames. When it came to shooting and Eye Protection, I always wore it in the beginning because Monkey insisted. Nowadays I buy higher quality prescription polarized and that is what I tend to use to limit the amount of things on my face. So vision-wise, my bar is set pretty high.

The Sawfly’s had a different feel to them that really made me consider changing my eyepro. For starters, they actually sat comfortably over my prescriptions. Since they have a prescription hookup for the actual lenses, I am intrigued. As far as wraparounds go, one of two things always happens to me. Either my big fat cheeks push and move the lenses up, down and around with my expressions as the lenses ride on my face and not my ears or brow, or, you have that gap between your cheeks and the lenses that is highly noticeable between light and dark and VERY noticeable when it comes to Polarized and Non-polarized. Neither was a problem on the Sawfly. They seemed to almost, float, in my vision. They weren’t noticeable and they weren’t a hinderance. They were light and stayed in place and furthermore, they did not have any particular point on my head and face that was blatantly supporting everything. They have multiple sizes for this particular model as well as adjustable arms and strap to make sure the ones you get are fit for you.

All in all, just as our last Revision Review, this is quality eye protection. Something that you would never think of until it was too late, but something you are thankful for when brass or fouling whacks you in the face. These may not be as “Cool Looking” as some other brands or even some other models in Revision line. They are however a true wraparound, anti-fog, polarized with interchangeable lenses and function flawlessly. There will be no shooting in the face in the video so let me just apologize for that right now. Do I recommend these? Only if you like seeing things and/or depth perception. Go check them out, Revision comes highly recommended by just about everyone and they are bound to have a style for you that will stop a bullet. (RevisionMilitary)

SIRT Performer Pro 110 Training Pistol Review

Well, I can tell you, I don’t train anywhere near the level the CEO or NextLevel Training does, but the one thing we do have in common is, we like to maximize trigger time. The SIRT Performer Pro 110 is a dry fire practicing MACHINE!

We will have a full review with a video for you shortly, but I just wanted to share with you our first impressions of this piece of apparatus. After all, we must train…THEN we can tell you if it’s as B.A. as we think it is. Especially since Superbowl has already tried stealing it from me after using it for only an hour.

A while back we posted an article on Dry-Fire practice with something known as “The Wall Drill”. This is a proven method and even if you don’t have a wall, balancing pocket change or empty brass on the muzzle is a sure way to get some feedback on whether you are flinching or not and how bad, while getting a smoother cleaner pull for better accuracy. This Pistol takes it to the….next…well, you get it.

The SIRT Performer Pro 110 we received has the same weight, feel and ergonomics as a Glock 17. It has Red and Green lasers for two purposes. The Red, lights up on the trigger take-up (the slack before the trigger breaks) and the Green lights up when the trigger breaks and is fully to the rear. The top of the pistol has a switch so you can turn the Red laser on and off. Which is good, because like anyone who opens up a new package that shoots lasers, the first thing I did was say (out loud, alone) “Pew Pew Pew” and I didn’t READ THE DIRECTIONS. After using it more and actually practicing the red laser began to annoy me. THEN I realized you could turn it off. The SIRT pistol also has a functioning magazine release as well as a weighted dummy mag to help in practicing those reloads to back on target. The pistol works in most holsters, I haven’t tried any kydex since I don’t own a 17, but the magazine definitely fits into standard mag holsters. The red laser was eating away at me for the “why” and so we dive into the directions after a few more “Pew Pew Pews”.

“Will Form Bad Habits” is what the directions said. If you shoot with both eyes open and you are trying to acquire sights on target, the little red dot instantly says to your brain “OOOH OOH Easier acquisition!!! Use That!” and then you do. You lose everything you have been working for at the range. However, if you are doing Force on Force, Simulation or anything being filmed, watched or judged, the red is a good indicator of safety precautions, trigger discipline and accountability. The green laser only lights up when the trigger breaks and is fully depressed and I love it. I love it because anyone who has ever played DuckHunt can hit an inanimate object with a laser. However, can you hit it, with JUST a dot, and not a line? Can you do it repeatedly, and how fast can you do it? Makes things a little harder now doesn’t it. Can you do it off hand, laying down, after a reload? On a train in a tree? Look at the pics.

One is good, one is bad, can you guess which is which?

An old timer at the range was giving me some knowledge when I asked him why he practices for bullseye league with a .45 ACP when they shoot .22 LR in league. He responded with “because a .45 doesn’t lie”. I thought it sounded cool and chalked it up to codger-ism 101. However, after getting my first 1911 and shooting it like I shot my Sig, the .45 did in fact, not lie. It told me just how B.S. my mechanics were. In defense of my 1911, I was in fact horrible. But thousands of rounds and thousands of dollars later, I have gotten a lot better. You know what sets you off more than missing with a .45? Watching just how much you dance a laser on the wall, translating every wiggle, flinch and heartbeat telling you that you suck.

Now what if I can do this, on the couch, at the workbench, or in the winter when there is 2 feet of snow on the ground? What if I could do it almost endlessly for the same amount of money as a low budget 1911 without the ammo? Seems like a win in my book… I will give you the update and full spec review after some more time with it. Oh yeah, the SIRT-AR bolt is awesome too… look for it in the future because I cannot WAIT to practice more.

556 Tactical STRYKER Compensator Review

When it comes to the sub triple digit compensator/flash hider market, there is a LOT to sort through when you want something better than the birdcage that came on your new AR.

You don’t have to be a fighting soldier, law enforcement or competitive shooter to demand more from your rifle. And there is such a wide variety of sub-$100 comps and hiders that do different things to get more enjoyment and results from shooting your rifle. The cool thing about your muzzle device is that it is not an arbitrary piece of the rifle that can be a “just because” part like laser etched dust covers and take-down pins. This is the part of your rifle that belches out fire, gas and most of all, the copper and lead. When that happens, physics will make sure that you feel some sort of recoil in an upward rise of the muzzle and rearward motion into your body.

All these different devices have different purposes and we wrote an article with video in the past showing the differences between Flash Hiders and Compensators/Brakes. Some even claim to do both compensate as well as hide flash. We like testing these out because it is an easy part swap out, there is INSTANT feedback on how it performs, and we can document the felt recoil, rise and flash very easily. Today, we got to try the STRYKER from 556 Tactical.

She’s a mean looking little bugger with lots of nice little jagged points crowning the muzzle. The design is aggressive looking which gives aesthetic appeal with it’s spikes as well as the “Shark Gills” along the sides. If you were going for looks and that look is “mean” then this is a great comp to use.

The “Shark Gills” as I mentioned actually have a specific purpose and if you hold your rifle with a good solid grip and 3 points of contact, they do a really good job of keeping the muzzle on target with minimal recoil pushing the muzzle up. Similar to the birdcage there is more opening on the top of the muzzle device than there is on the bottom. This aids in pushing gasses and fouling UP to counteract the physics of the muzzle rising. Simultaneously the shark gills are angled aft which helps direct some of those same gasses back and away. This will NOT take recoil away. You will still be very aware you shot a weapon, however, it is enough blowback to again, keep the muzzle on target. Side Note: Mentioned in the video, if you do not hold your weapon like you should (light support hand or screwing around and not focused) this has enough redirection of gasses to push the muzzle DOWN.

Another thing I notice about some comps is there ability to not just keep the muzzle steady, but to also choke the life out of your esophagus and blind you with burnt fouling and gasses. I actually was relieved after seeing the shark gills and firing it and didn’t taste burnt powder. There are many cheapos out there that do a great job, unless you want to breathe.

As a flash hider, it did not really function in a manner that 100% reduced any kind of visible signature from firing, especially under sustained firing. I believe the several small forward facing vents in the face of the comp aid with taking care of flash for a great majority of the time and it did it WAY better than others we have tested that are specifically labeled as compensators. I did not have any noticeably flash and it was only after watching and editing video did I see some little flickers of fire coming out. If you need zero flash coming out, and you know who you are, then although this does a great job with the extra duty, it is listed as a compensator and it functions great as such.

I have no problems with recommending the STRYKER from 556 Tactical. At $50, this thing actually did exactly what it said and then some. I like it and will probably be running it for quite some time. (556Tactical)

KSG First Impression

So far every person who has driven by while we were shooting the KSG has stopped and stared, so it’s definitely a head-turner. That being said, I know what everyone is waiting for… No misfeeds, no failure to feeds, no malfunctions at all.

So far this shotgun has taken abuse, it can be shot and chambered sideways, and I’ve gone trap shooting with it (I’ll post video of me not missing a single shot for all to see with the full review). The one thing that I will note is that you have to shoot this shotgun differently than the others. Your right arm cannot sit under the buttstock or the shells eject and hit your wrist. Little things like this can make it take some getting used to.

Hope you enjoy the video, keep checking back for the full blown review after we punish it for 3 months.

Just some friends at the range

As we grow older the toys get better but the spirit of good ol’ fashioned ‘merican razzing as you try and best your friends is always there. Ours “razzing” just happens to be at the range today so we turned the cameras on and let them roll. We didn’t expect to catch anything fantastic but wanted to share nonetheless.

There is almost zero educational value to this article or video. However, we wanted to share with our friends and fans what we look like when we aren’t doing a review and just hanging out. We just turned the cameras on and started in on each other. There is roughly 3 hours of footage that had to be cut down for the sake of sanity and time. If you really want to watch us lay into each other about donuts, politics, the cost of ammo and technicalities of junk measuring, well, you’re just going to have to come along some day.

A brief outline of what we “competed” with was we started off with 3 targets, 15 rounds, fastest time with all rounds on target. From left to right you fire 1 on target 1, 2 on target 2 and 3 on target 3. You then reverse and put 4 on target 2 and 5 on target 1. The targets left to right should have 6 holes, 6 holes and 3 holes. Any miss is an instant DQ (We are pretty harsh on each other) as well as ball breaking for the next hour or until you redeem yourself. Whichever comes first.

We did a few mag change drills, similar to how I run my pistol mag change drills with a couple mags, 3 rounds per mag, fastest time. no gear was brought to the range that day so we were pulling mags off the counter instead of from gear, but that’s perfectly fine for us chuckleheads showboating to each other. As it turns out (of course the camera wasn’t on) I can fire 9 rounds total from 3 magazines (3,3,3) as fast as Lou can fire 8 rounds from 2 magazines (4,4). I did not expect that and was actually a little nervous when Superbowl recommended the challenge. That’s not me beating on Lou, but a testament to how far we all have come just from breaking each-other’s stones in a constant battle to one-up the other. Several years ago we were complaining about loading magazines and our thumb dexterity!

At the end of the day, we are all friends. We still have fun at the range and in my eyes, those are some of the best days. We still learn from mistakes and from eachother and that benefits everyone. When all is said and done, some friendly shooting is always a good time and if we can all get better while having fun, you can’t ask for a better day.

Stay Safe, Check your chambers.

Lucky Gunner: Sellier and Bellot Ammo Test

We all care about the price of the ammunition we are purchasing. I have found several types of ammo on the lucky gunner website cheaper than what I have purchased on the web or anywhere else locally. The prices are good and from what I gather they only display ammunition that is in stock on their site, which means you may not see everything they normally carry every visit.

Customer service was not something I had the chance to really experience. I tried calling their customer support line on two different days and was met by an answering machine, I didn’t have a question of much importance so I hung up as there was no other option than leaving a message.

I used their online chat feature, the person I spoke with was kind and respectful. I asked him about two major types of ammo and a recommendation of one over the other and the only response was that he had never shot either of them.

Overall, I would shop at www.luckygunner.com again. The online help and phone service leave much to be desired, if you are willing to communicate via E-Mail I think that the customer service was bar none the best I have dealt with. They have lower prices than most and the site always makes it easy to find what you are looking for.

Sellier and Bellot 168 Grain BTHP Review

So www.luckygunner.com sent us a box of Sellier and Bellot 168 Grain BTHP in .308 to test out for review. Naturally we need some type of evidence other than bullets landing on paper to tell us if the thirty dollar a box premium is really going to be worth the money.

We used a CTK precision bench rest as well as a chronograph to measure the consistency of the velocity as well as accuracy at 100 meters. We did a comparison of the Sellier and Bellot BTHP to standard Remington 150 grain soft tip ammo. Lets keep in mind while looking at this comparison that the Remington is one half the cost, and when looking at velocities a faster bullet due to the lighter weight.

Accuracy and consistancy are the main concerns when spending a premium on any high end ammunition. We used two guns for the testing and the results were identical. We used a Remington Modle 700 SPS with a 24” heavy barrel and a Savage Model 16 with 22” sporter barrel. The accuracy with both of these using a CTK Precision P3 Bech Vise was consistent. Cold bore groupings and hot bore groupings were 3 inches on every 5 shot group we did. After shooting 2, 5 shot groupings with each gun 2 different times there was no variance in accuracy between the Remington 150 Soft Tip and the Sellier and Bellot 168 BTHP. So for the extra $15 a box the accuracy was not a measurable difference.

Velocity is another characteristic of ammo that would measure consistency, this is where we ran into some concerns with the Sellier and Bellot ammunition. The average velocity out of the Savage Model 16 was 2528.6 fps. After putting 6 shots through the Savage we had a shot register at 2883 fps which was a velocity spike of 354.3 fps. I am not going to go into what that could cause on different rifle platforms, the one thing I will say is that this is a major safety concern.

Overall the Sellier and Bellot ammunition was pretty bad, not only is the extra $15 not helping in the accuracy department it is such an inconsistent load that we would actually advise against using it based on our findings. A 14% increase in velocity could indicate, conservatively that the pressure could be increasing by 42% which could cause a multitude of issues. More information will be added to this post after we make sure our calculations are correct we will release the velocity information along with the estimated pressures.

UPDATE 8/9/2012
So a few people told us our groupings were less than satisfactory. The one thing I wanted to point out about this review is that the groupings could have been redone, however the safety concern for the findings in regards to velocity spikes were a deterrent of us doing any further research for this post. We have some more information on the way but as of right now the group size really has nothing to do with the actual findings. I stripped the copper out of my R 700 and after about 40 rounds I was shooting 1 MOA groups with the 150 grain ammunition so there is room for improvement on the accuracy test. Just wanted to throw that out there so those reading this review could look at the area we were concerned about vs. the details that ended up being data points we were not worried about in our recommendation.

Montie Gear Precision Gun Rest Review

We brought this precision rest out after I had stripped the copper out of the barrel on my R 700 SPS in .308. I ended up shooting 40 rounds using the precision rest on this one occasion and have used it several times as you may have seen in our other videos. Montie Gear is great at producing rests that set up easily and come apart just as easily for storage in a gear bag.

Each of the three feet have about an inch and a half of vertical adjustment. The top of the stand has about 2 inches of play for vertical adjustment of the actual rest so you can place your rifle exactly where you want it with little to no effort on the adjustments. I have used this rest on multiple occasions with my AR15 and Remington 700 Rifle, but the design is simple enough that it can be used with just about anything.

UPDATE BELOW——
The only thing that I would love to see with this precision rest would be some sort of rubberized caps that come with it for the bottom of the feet. It seemed like I was constantly adjusting the position on the actual rest because it was slipping on the wood bench. When we reviewed the AR-Rest Lightweight it did come with a baggie and three rubberized caps to put at the bottom of the stand. Unlike the AR-Rest Lightweight the Montie Gear Precision Rest is good for any and all firearms.

I love this rest – it’s sturdy, portable, easy to use and I bring it everywhere I go with my range bag. Montie Gear makes great products that are built tough to sustain some serious abuse. If you didn’t check them out after our last review, you should definitely head on over to www.montiegear.com and see all that they have to offer.

UPDATE
Seems like either I didn’t look through the box hard enough or just a minor packaging error. Recieved the rubber feet for the rest and they work perfectly!

S&W Shield 40 First Impressions

First glance, this pistol is fantastic. We only fired about a hundred rounds through it so we aren’t going to give a full run down just yet. She needs to prove herself a bit more.

First things first, this weapon is light, it is nimble and it fits the hand more like a compact than a single stack sub-compact. Compared to similar pistols in the same market it has the similar weight and balance but just feels meatier. So far she’s looking pretty good.

Point of aim with the M&P grip is very natural and target acquisition is pretty snappy. The two magazines that come with the Shield are a 6 round small magazine and the 7 round extended magazine with a stippled grip. The 3 white dots line up very easily and the sights line up sharply, although I wouldn’t mind the comfort of tritium in those sights.

Compared to a 9mm, the .40 has almost zero difference in recoil. A bigger round with a bigger punch and almost no difference in felt recoil compared to the smaller caliber. This pistol feels really good in my hands and I am beginning to fall in love.

But what about the trigger you ask? Well let me tell you it is a good trigger for the size. The pistol is technically a Double Action (DA) Striker fired trigger, but it fires more likea single Action (SA) and with that you don’t have to suffer through a heavy trigger pull through eternity for an uncertain break. Personally, I like light slack and a clean break in my triggers and this one comes pretty close. But then again, this isn’t a target pistol, this is a pistol meant to not get too touchy in a stressful situation so with that I can understand not having a glass rod breaking 2 lb. pull.

There are 2 physical safety systems on the weapon, one at the rear that is manipulated with the thumb and there is a trigger safety that disengages when the trigger is pulled properly. Nothing excessive or intrusive and all edges are blended and rounded to make it a smooth drawing weapon, yet, the controls like the safety, and mag release are not so blended that they cannot be manipulated. I can probably go on and on for a lot longer, but we are just going to have to wait for the full review now aren’t we…

Check back for a detailed review in the near future!

SOTA Arms 300BLK Upper Review

Well the ever resourceful Superbowl found a small, up and coming manufacturer in Minnesota called SOTA Arms. It isn’t a huge operation but at the prices SOTA is making these uppers I don’t know how long it will be before they start getting a LOT of calls.

Now, there isn’t any crazy anodizing, engravings or special cuts in their machining process. They don’t have a trendy logo or crazy tactical name. They make quality, machined, tried and true uppers with designs that work and a polished finished product.

The 300 Blackout upper we were given for review is their machined upper with the same forward assist and charging handle you find on most standard configuration AR’s. Black anodized with T-marked flat top rail which gives way to a smooth machined aluminum hand guard that is a great diameter for my size hand or larger all shrouding a gleaming stainless steel 16” 1-8 twist barrel. At the end of that barrel is a beast of a muzzle break that you usually only see on tanks.

As with most brand new hardware it came to us thirsty for lube. We seasoned as best we could and starting dumping rounds through it. She performed beautifully with not a single jam, misfeed, failure to feed… anything. The barrel heated up evenly and smoothly while the the gorgeous muzzle break (as you can see in the video) did a terrific job holding the muzzle rise down and sights on target.

At the end of the day, it isn’t a razzle-dazzle type of upper. It is a working class hero that gives you a fantastic product for a price that gives you the ability to have multiple configurations in your tool chest without all the cost of some of the bigger names out there. In the short time we have had it, the product seems solid as could be with a great barrel and brake. Hopefully we get a chance to revisit this down the road, maybe next time… suppressed?

SightMark Ultra Dual Shot Pro Spec Review

No pun intended, but there is much more than meets the eye when it comes to optics.

Sightmark sent us this optic for 30 days so the durability test was mounting it, shooting with it, and tossing it around on a padded bench. It held true. This is by no means an in-depth durability test but for what most people use their range rifle for, it shows that this optic will keep you hitting what you aim at with daily use.

Controls are a huge deal, even when shooting at the range. I’ve taken tactical courses and found that gloves are a must-have. Perfecting controls for use with bare hands and gloves seems to be a big miss everywhere when you look into most optics on the lower end of the price scale. This is where the Sightmark Ultra Dual Shot Pro Spec Reflex Sight took me by surprise: The laser has a large up and down switch to turn it on with a small pivotal piece that acts as a safety. In addition, the knob on the left hand side for brightness is large and tactile, both of these controls are easy to use with or without gloves.

Appearance of the reticle is another area where a lot of optics suffer. After shooting my rifle with an EOTech 512 and then switching over to the Sightmark, I can say the Sightmark has a much clearer reticle. It’s crisp and doesn’t blur when the brightness is turned up like most other optics in its price range (and some in the $500-$800 range). One thing that I did notice was that the blue glass made it hard to see bright colors on targets. Bright orange and green specifically are hard to see which is not a huge deal as the markings on the target are all in black.

We did not get much use out of the laser on the model Sightmark sent us. We were shooting during the day at 25 meters and like most lasers, it’s not easy to see in broad daylight. If you plan on having this on a home defense rifle or shotgun, the application would be perfect. The shooting we did do with the laser when we started losing daylight went smoothly. One thing I’d like to mention is that if you don’t have a flat top rifle, the remote for the laser attaches right where your ejection port is; not a big deal but felt it’s worth pointing out.

All in all, the Sightmark Ultra Dual Shot Pro Spec Reflex Sight is a really nice optic for any price range. The company is committed to quality and is very responsive with any issues you encounter with the products they sell. The reticle quality is the best I have seen, bar none. The controls are easy, and the price is unbelievable given the features. I would recommend this optic to anyone looking to spend less than $300 on their next purchase.

Sig Sauer P226 Revisited

I have said it before and I will say it again, this feels like a weapon. We can talk all day about 1911 this, and polymer pistol that, at the end of the day I like a lot of those pistols and then some. The Sig Sauer P226 however has always felt right at home to me.

The ergonomics are something I would put the most emphasis on. The ergonomics and controls. This is a 34oz. Nitron finished slide on an alloy frame, which doesn’t make it top heavy, just gives it the kind of weight that lets you know it’s there, and it’s not a water pistol. That weapon is here to do stuff if you let it. When you raise the pistol up whether one hand or two, it aims naturally and is easy to get the sights on target.

The controls is the other part of the ergonomics equation. I much prefer a de-cocker to a safety and the location of the de-cocker on the P226 is placed perfectly right between your slide lock and magazine release. It even operates on a slight curve just to make the action even smoother with the same thumb, with minimal handling, I have access to all three mechanisms without having to “feel around” or look at the locations of these controls.

Reliability is something every gun owner wants out of their weapon. I can personally vouch for well over 6,000 to 7,000 rounds through my .40 and easily 5,000 rounds out of Monkey’s Sig without a single failure to eject, double feed, misfire, jam, stovepipe, you name it. The barrels are strong, and accurate and after all those rounds the rifling grooves are still pretty good cuts. Accuracy wise I am probably the worst person to validate handgun accuracy outside of 25m. And even then, I am only probably 85%. Monkey and Superbowl however can do pretty decent groupings with their 9mm’s at the same distance.

The sites are generally SigLite tritium night sites, but there are other types available as well like the TruGlo tritium and optic front sight. The sights are pretty standard albeit very visible. This isn’t a marksmanship pistol with adjustable sights, but they are rugged and visible and that’s all that matters. Easily visible in all lighting conditions. I mean jeez, you can bury this thing in a bunker, underground in pure darkness for 5 years, and those sights will still be glowing ready to go.

I have yet to fire a Sig Sauer DA/SA pistol that didn’t have a fantastic trigger. It is a little hefty in double action, rivaling many revolvers at 10+ lbs. of pull, but a solid yet light clean break of 4 lbs. in single action. The Sig trigger is consistent and predictable aiding in it’s accuracy through your accuracy. Less hiccups between you and the bullet leaving do nothing but make the projectile fly straighter.

This 4.4” double stack pistol is not my first choice for Conceal Carry. There are people that CAN do it and I am not one of them. In the cold winters up here in NH though I will “Open Carry” the Sig with a jacket (I say “open” with “quotes” because it’s”technically” concealed since a jacket is covering it.) A full size pistol is not easily concealed for me so I generally use my 226 for training classes, for target practice and it’s the go to pistol for me when it comes to home defense. The picatinny rail holds many different brands of lights and lasers for added versatility.

To wrap things up, the Sig Sauer P226 is a tried and true, fantastic all around full size weapon. It is employed by many government agencies, armies, countries and countless more independents. You get what you pay for with most weapons and the Sig is no exception. MSRP ranges from $990 – $1200+, but you can find them at dealers for around $850 and up brand new. Even better news for some, used Sig Sauers also fetch a good price too. I have seen as low as $650 for some used model P226’s. It is a solid weapon for a sidearm, it is a great pistol to have and it is one of my favorites to run. If you ever get a chance to own or fire one, I highly encourage it.

U.S. Survival AR-7 Review

With no immediate rescue and not enough food to hike your way out of the woods you can now hunt. You may not be taking down any major game but we’re trying to survive, not feed the family for winter.

Assembly of the rifle is very quick and simple. Once you take the pieces out of the stock it takes less than a minute to put it all together, even without practice. If you head on over to the Henry Repeating Arms site you can see it done in about 20 seconds by someone who has used it a fair amount more than myself.

The Henry Repeating Arms US Survival Rifle is compact and can fit in any standard backpack or storage space in a canoe. This rifle is designed to float, so when disaster strikes you can at least recover your now floating rifle and it will still sustain functionality. The AR-7 weighs in at 3.5 pounds so it doesn’t take up a large amount of energy to carry it in a situation where exerting any extra energy could cost you your life.

Bringing this rifle to the range was an interesting experience for me, I am custom to using high precision, heavy rifles with much larger bullets. The accuracy of this rifle was astounding as you can see in the video, at 50 meters my first 5 shots landed in a 3-square-inch group. Shooting a 3-inch group with 5 shots and iron sights is an impressive feat for any .22 at that distance.

I filmed this video after bringing the AR-7 to the range on two separate days and putting just over 300 rounds through it. During the time I’ve had it I haven’t had a single malfunction with the rifle or ammunition. Reliability does not seem to be even a minor concern as the gun is quite primitive, using very simple parts that don’t have any major points for potential failure.

Overall, I was more than impressed with the performance Henry Repeating Arms brought to the US Survival Rifle platform. It is a solid .22 LR rifle that is build on the principles of survival and delivers everything someone would need out of this type of weapon.

Specifications Taken From Henry Repeating Arms Website

U.S. Survival AR-7 – Black
Model Number H002B
Action Type Semi-automatic
Caliber .22 LR
Capacity 8 round magazine (comes with 2)
Length 35″ assembled
16.5″ when stowed
Weight 3.5 lbs.
Stock ABS Plastic
Sights Adjustable rear, blade front
Finish Teflon coated receiver and coated steel barrel

KillCliff: Test Positive for Awesome

Maybe your favorite firearms instructor or two partake in the nectar as they dump 300 rounds into 3 targets in 6 seconds (all headshots) with no reloads.You may have wondered, “How Do I Test Positive for Awesome?”.

It’s called KillCliff. And it is in fact, awesome.

The appearance is deceiving. If it looks like an energy drink, promises to (help) make you (more) awesome(r), and you see people doing awesome things while holding/drinking/being awesome, it must be an energy drink right? Wrong. It is a RECOVERY drink.

“It’s a what what in the what?”

Yes you heard me, a recovery drink. It doesn’t jolt you into a sugary carbonated Taurine flavored caffeine addled 3000% daily value of B vitamins state of alertness and energy. It helps you actually recover from whatever you just destroyed your body doing or prepare your body/mind for whatever you are about to do.

Whether you are training, losing weight, drinking heavy, recovering from drinking heavy or you just need a tasty beverage to prepare for your work out or a day of awesomeness, this is what KillCliff is made for. So, with a case at the ready and a mission to “test” some ideas conjured by their FAQ page and my over exaggeration, I set out to see what KillCliff was all about. Here are my “Scientific” findings.

Wake up:

Made my usual coffee, usually 2-3 cups of a dark roast, today…KillCliff. Today is going to be awesome. Successfully shouldered and played helicopter with my 35 lb. 3 year old while flipping eggs with no spatula. Beginnings of an awesome day. Still had a cup of coffee but only one was needed. The blood orange flavor is in fact tasty.

Driving:

Peripheral vision and horrible Massachusetts’ driver anticipation was off the charts. Lane changes and merges we smooth and Jedi-like. You would think I drove professionally if you were on a ride-along. No stress smooth sailing on the way to the range.

At the range:

Let’s put KillCliff to the test. One can as I load magazines and we are ready to rock and roll. I successfully did a sideways dual wielding dive while emptying both magazines in slow motion a-la John Wu. Not only were all 24 rounds on target, but dove’s flew out magically on cue in the background. It was awesome.

Relations:

Instead of redacting 8 paragraphs of details as this is a family friendly site, let’s just say Misses Whitey would like a lifetime supply of KillCliff shipped out immediately. Let us also say… I didn’t tap out first 😉

Alcoholic Mixology:

Successfully mixed a half bottle of Belvedere Vodka with 2 cans of KillCliff. I wasn’t too concerned with “performance” at that point, I was in it to win it. It’s not “drinking alone” if it’s research right? Went to bed after a day of awesomeness and as drunk as Lindsey Lohan (without all the driving). I call it “Killvedere”

The Morning After:

Same 3 year old, 6 a.m. wake up call. Usually, we defer to Misses Whitey but I popped out of bed (not alert and awake mind you, just more mentally functional than I usually am). One more KillCliff as I make his milk and cereal to rock out to Little Einsteins. No hangover, no grogginess, ready to start a normal day.

Conclusion:

Much of this has been very tongue in cheek. I wanted to have fun with this one because this product is one of the cool things I have gotten to review that will not kill someone if done improperly. KillCliff is in fact a tasty alternative to energy drinks that has benefits for your mind and body. they are growing like wildfire because it is really good and actually good for you and your body. It actually makes other drinks in similar sized cans (and larger ones too) seem harsh and excessive. I really liked the Blood Orange flavor as did all four of the Four Guys. Misses whitey actually really liked it a lot and we found ourselves fighting over who gets the last can.

Simple things I didn’t normally notice like my knees seemed pain free and lubricated. I wasn’t craving more caffeine by comparison to the normal levels I intake and I generally felt…good. I never felt like I needed another can or twelve to accomplish anything one can couldn’t handle. If you like “energy” drinks and you have your favorite 40mm can of “pick me up” and actually desire more from a beverage without the shock and awe, I encourage you to try KillCliff as an alternative or replacement. It is becoming more and more available, you can order it from their site, it is competitively priced and is just overall a great product. Especially if you beat your body or brain up, either by being awesome, or just by being everyday you. I’m no doctor or workout buff, but me, the guys and the wife all agree, we need more KillCliff.

(No doves were harmed in the fictional cinematic scene. I did however shoot very well that day with the pistol and shotgun exceptionally early in the morning.)

Ruger 9mm LC9 Pistol Review

What’s the best of both worlds? I’ve found a pretty good medium with the Ruger LC9.

SIZE

Even with a wealth of features and 9mm caliber, the Ruger LC9 is a very compact gun. It is 6 inches long, 4.5 in height and just under 1 inch thick. On a good day, my wallet is thicker than this gun, and weighing in just a hair over 1 pound you almost forget it’s there after carrying it around for a few days. And overall, for a 9mm compact gun it’s pretty comfortable to shoot.

FEATURES

So there are a some things about this gun that I love, and a couple I can’t stand, but we’ll get there soon enough.

The LC9 has a manual safety on it, which I think is a necessity for a concealed carry gun. It is very easy to disengage the safety when drawing with a click downward with my thumb. I have yet to improperly click the safety down to fire the weapon. However, with my large man hands, re-engaging the safety takes two hands due to the awkward direction it needs to be pushed. For someone with smaller hands, this may not be an issue.

For a compact 9mm handgun the capacity is on par with the competitors at 7+1.

The trigger pull on this gun is loooooooooong. It’s about an inch and a quarter and only shoots double action. This is to help prevent accidental discharge of the gun when carrying, in addition to the manual safety.

After putting about 500 rounds through this gun I can handle it just like any of my other firearms. If you are going to carry for personal protection the only method for learning your gun is practice.

The LaserMax laser that came with the gun leaves much to be desired… That being said, here is my experience the first time I shot the gun: I put about 50 or 60 rounds through the gun and suddenly the laser stopped working. It would flicker but was not visible on target at all. I went home, took the cover off the laser and reset the battery, and it has worked fine since.

My second issue with the laser is that when you shoot, the recoil is enough to turn the laser off, and when you take a second shot, the recoil will turn it back on. Given, the first shot may be the most important, and the laser adds a certain level of intimidation, but if it doesn’t work I don’t plan on using it.

A nice feature of the LC9 is that the magazine comes with a very small extension that allows my pinky to actually grip the gun. With most pocket pistols, I struggle to fit my entire bear paw onto the grip and that little tiny piece makes it a lot more useable for me. It also comes with a standard flat plastic piece to put on the bottom of the magazine in case you do not need the extra nub sticking out for huge hands.

PRACTICALITY

Two of the most important qualities for a concealed carry gun are accuracy and reliability. With a barrel length of 3.11 inches I was surprised at the accuracy I achieved with little to no practice. The first day I shot the LC9 I was standing 15 feet away from my six inch target. I put all but my first two rounds on target. The two misses were me getting used to pulling the trigger back about a quarter mile before the gun fires.

After putting 500 rounds through this gun I can shoot a 4 inch group at 25 feet which makes me perfectly comfortable with my proficiency at using it as a concealed carry piece. All in all this has been a great gun so far, 500 rounds without a single malfunction or hiccup.

The most minor thing to mention is that the stippling on the grip is a little too aggressive for my hands. After about 200 rounds the palm of my hand was raw. Maybe I am just being a little pansy but I though it would be worth mentioning in case anyone looks at this for a daily range gun.

SUMMARY

There are things to love and hate when it comes to this handgun. All in all I think if you take into consideration that it was made as a concealed carry gun all of these features make sense. As for the LaserMax laser, I will keep you posted on what becomes of that as it unfolds. The gun is small, reliable and comfortable to hold. I have no complaints outside of the laser and I think that Ruger has and will continue to make a great concealed carry gun.

Imperfection at its Best: Browning Citori

My Browning Citori was bought in March 1975 by my father. He bought this shotgun for bird hunting and several days after buying it he brought it out in his canoe. As the story goes, my father set the Citori on the seat of the canoe, resting it over the side.

Here is where it the story really begins: According to my father, he brought our dog out on the lake with him. Brandy had been hunting time and again and apparently was attempting to get back into the boat after a swim. Dad bent over to help the dog and presto change-o the gun fell to the bottom of the lake. (However, my father being 6’ 4”, I firmly believe that he stumbled around the boat like the giant-sized man that he is and knocked the Citori into the water by accident.) Just having bought his dream shotgun, my father immediately called a local diver and paid them to go spend a day at the lake. The diver miraculously recovered the shotgun three days after it fell into the dark abyss.

As you can see from the photos, the blueing on the shotgun was eaten off by the vegetation at the bottom of the lake. The wood is still in new condition and the shotgun shines as if the finish was created that way. I will never have this gun re-blued or cosmetically worked on because it is a story of experience and something that I will pass along in my family for generations to come.

The Browning Citori is somewhat of a legend when it comes to shotguns, there are many like them but the Citori was meant to compete with the best of the best. This gun runs circles around everything I have shot at the trap range, it is perfection in it’s simplest form. This particular gun was purchased for seven hundred dollars back in its day. Today to buy this same model you would pay around $3000. I will never sell this gun for any amount of money, it is irreplaceable and could never be duplicated. Well that is the story of my Citori, it may not be to interesting but it is one gorgeous gun.

Mesa Tactical Recoil Stock Kit, LEO Adapter

After talking with the owner and his staff, I found out a lot about not just the product itself, but also about the company, the drive and the pride to make their product in the USA. The one quote from the owner that I liked the most was “If I can’t make it better, I won’t make it.” And from the parts I have had the privilege of using, I can tell you these things are built tough. It makes a lot of sense why law enforcement uses their products.

We received from Mesa Tactical their LEO Vertical Grip adapter, their Recoil Stock Kit, and a 6-round Side Saddle shell holder with rail. The superstar is the Recoil Stock Kit as it comes with the Hogue over mold pistol grip, an Enidine buffer tube replacement with a 4 position collapsible stock. The unsung hero is the Vertical grip adapter which is thick and rugged and fits on the receiver like a glove. I’m not usually into the grips with finger grooves, but the Hogue was actually very comfortable and gripped easy.

The Recoil Stock Kit was pretty awesome. A shotgun is a pretty big boom no matter how you slice it, but with this kit in place, I was able to keep a better cheek weld through shots, keep the muzzle from flipping up after repeated shots, and those follow up shots were quicker and more on target than without the kit. I have a pretty sturdy frame and to me, shooting 12 guage all day isn’t really much of an issue, but with the kit on, it was a lot easier to control the actual shotgun altogether. Between the grip, the adapter and the buffer tube, this tames a 12g really quickly without being an overcomplicated system.

Installation was a breeze on the Mossberg. Two butt stock screws to get the pad off, one to remove the stock, and then one that comes with the adapter tightened on and you are ready to go. Pistol grip installs just like an AR grip with, again, 1 screw in the handle and all thats left is to thread on the buffer tube and you are done. Simple, clean and sturdy.

Is this kit a shotgun necessity? Well, that depends on you and your shotgun, and what it’s intended purpose is. Believe it or not a shotgun is still a very versatile and powerful weapon even if it doesn’t have all the bells and whistles on it. Adjustable stocks aid in everything from size differentials, to overall length as well as even your trigger pull. Pistol grips aid in manipulation, ergonomics and recoil control, and having something like that shock absorbing buffer tube between the two can reduce recoil by up to 70% to allow for a more diverse crowd to easily fire the 12 gauge and keep it successfully on target. I personally see a lot of value in the system and enjoyed using it thoroughly. I can’t wait to take a shotgun class and get some more drills and methods to get better with this system.

For more information, go check them out at www.mesatactical.com

Mossberg 500 Persuader Tactical Tri-Rail Review

I sat there in the gun shop and debated…side by side and toe to toe with the shotgun “of my dreams”. The competitor had nice sights, a rail, collapsible stock and all the things that make all the tacti-cool kids drool. But then I had a grown up moment. I have no idea what I am doing with this thing. Let’s start with the basics.

So after dropping half the money on the Mossberg that I would have spent on the “cool” gun, I was on my way home with a big brown box that had a Mossberg logo on it. The box itself said Persuader/Cruiser, but their website lists the mossy as a Persuader Tactical tri-rail. Here are the findings of this first-time shotgun owner.

First off, shotguns are awesome. This is my first and I don’t think I could have ever imagined that I could have such a blast with such a versatile system for the price I paid. Price-point was a huge win for a popular firearm like this one and Mossberg doesn’t make junk. In side by side comparison with some of the other manufacturers I was looking at, the thing I noticed most was the action. By action I mean the thing everyone instantly does with a shotgun, rack it back and rack it home. It is smooth and consistent, but there is definitely some wiggle between the forearm and the receiver. Other than that, pound for pound I feel it was almost identical in “feel”, weight and balance.

The next thing I specifically paid attention to was the controls. Location of the safety and the action release in relevance to grip and trigger. The Mossberg had the controls in locations that were easy for me to access and manipulate. Safety topside accessible with your thumb as it wraps around the stock like my bolt action rifles. The action release was right behind the trigger guard closer to the middle finger behind the trigger guard as opposed to the front of the trigger guard like other brands. The stock is a standard synthetic stock and comes with a decent butt-pad, that was of no concern to me. The forend however, was another story. This looks cool on the rack, hell maybe i’m holding it wrong, but when I shoot this weapon that “tactical” tri-rail jacked my thumb every time. Now I am sure someone out there has a use for it like a light mount or something, but for me it was just plain annoying. Luckily though, they have two screw holding the rail panels in that when removed make the forend smooth again. Nothing to crucify a manufacturer over, just repeatedly jacked my thumb up, and it hurt. That concludes my whining about that.

The Persuader is a 20” Barrel with a “8 Shot capacity”. This means in the shotgun world that 7, 2-3/4” rounds can be fit in the tube and 1 in the pipe (7+1). It gets cut down to 7 shot capacity if you are using 3” shells. Mossberg also uses a “Double-Claw” Extractor to make sure you can cycle as fast as possible and get spent shells the hell out of the chamber quick. There is a standard brass bead sight on the front and the top of the receiver is drilled and tapped. This allows for even more customization as there is a wide assortment of parts from many manufacturers to add things like a picatinny or weaver rail, red dot, holographic, scope, ghost rings… it goes on and on. Since the Mossberg is so popular with Armed Forces and Law Enforcement there is no shortage of companies that make cool and useful accessories for this platform.

Disassembly is pretty darn easy which also aided in cleaning. I did not disassemble every part, lay them out and itemize and clean every piece. I did a basic field strip and got the fouling out, added some more oil and called it a day. As I spend more time with the Mossy I will of course, take it apart further and probably do a how-to for the site with Monkey.

Final assessment of this weapon? Damn good and the cost just seals the deal. Inexpensive, diversity of rounds and capabilities and highly customizable to make this weapon whatever you want it to be. The downside is that damn forend, but as I said, for $350 and removable screws to make it not kill my thumb? Worth every penny.

Thanks for reading, as always check your chambers!

Montie Gear Lightweight AR Rest Review

The rest is made out of milled aluminum and has some seriously heavy duty rubber pads on it to prevent your gun from getting scratched. The rest also came with some small rubber pads to put on the feet in case you need a little more grip on the surface you’re shooting on.

This Lightweight AR Rest weighs in at less than 12 oz, so I don’t notice a difference in weight with it in my range bag. It also breaks down into three flat pieces that I can slide in between my handgun cases in my gear bag without taking up significant space.

This stand goes together easy. My only complaint is that it was a bit difficult to take the cotter pin out the first few times but after the break in period it is perfect. If you are looking for a sight-in stand that you can always keep in your bag, or just something to bench rest and shoot from, I would recommend heading over to www.MontieGear.com and checking them out.

Ranger Coffee

I also don’t whine about my coffee unless it’s just colored water, because that’s just wrong. From Kona coffee to diner coffee, some Brazilian to the Keurig Caribou menagerie, I drink coffee.

Let me tell you what happened when I had some Ranger Coffee. I heated up the water and primed up the french press with full-on expectations of balls-to-the-wall, caffeine-laden mud that would require a good quart of cream to even change color. I expected a swift rescheduling of regularity as penance for the level of alertness I was about to feel. What happened next was what caught me completely off guard.

I felt like I was home.

The senses of smell and taste are not usually memory triggers for me, but I remembered every morning after a good party, I remembered my mom’s couch after Thanksgiving dinner and I remembered being home. With family, with friends, home. Now I don’t know if this is the desired result, but this was the instant I knew what I was going to write about Ranger Coffee. I am not commenting on nuttiness, earthy tones, arabica whatever. As much as I may catch flack for putting this much “feeling” into something we put on our site, it really made me think.

If you were thousands of miles from home, in a place the furthest from where you would feel peaceful and safe. If you were under tremendous amounts of physical and emotional stress. If you were where our troops are for long periods at a time, away from all the things they love and hold dear and all it takes is one cup of coffee to remind them of where they came from… we need to get them more coffee.

The one thing that was obvious when talking to the current operator of Ranger Coffee is that they invest in companies and foundations that help veterans. This is a company who is set out to grow and develop other foundations and charities that help thousands of veterans. There are few companies that stand out in the way they support themselves and their vision, Ranger Coffee is one that knows where their money is going and making sure it goes as far as it can to help everyone.

Reload Drill 2

As with just about everything in life, repetition and consistency help you get faster and more efficient. If there was anything you owned that you had to prioritize practicing on, don’t you think something that could save or take a life would be a top priority?

Before I explain this, let’s go over what you need:

  1. The holster you carry, whether its a range holster or your Conceal Carry holster, practice how you carry.
  2. 2-3 magazines
  3. 50-100 rounds of ammo, you can shoot more but this is about practicing reloads not magazine emptying
  4. A magazine holster or carry the way you normally carry spare mags.
  5. Ear Protection and Eye Protection
  6. A Safe environment or range that allows you to draw.

This is a very easy drill to replicate and you can can save money on ammo by practicing the motions with empty magazines. You can easily practice with snap caps (dummy rounds) as well. I highly recommend going through about a dozen empty magazine reloads before considering actually loading.

Side Note: If you can’t hit the paper in a consistent group from the distance you are shooting at, this drill may need to wait for live fire.

Practice, Practice, Practice and you will get smoother and faster through repetition.

JKL Mobile Gun Vise Review

I will fully admit that I have fallen victim to the shiny mentality. I was a little apprehensive about the JKL Mobile Gun Vise after taking it out of the packaging; it appeared to be just a pile of delrin rod and milled aluminum.

After opening it, I started thinking about ways that I could avoid reviewing this product. Well I decided to put my shiny syndrome in the closet for a day and give it a try, forgetting my initial reaction. I have seen this thing posted up everywhere and I bet you’ve seen a picture or two of it posted around as well.

I needed to apply Frog Lube to my latest AR build and decided that it would be the perfect opportunity to try out the JKL Mobile Gun Vise. I took my AR apart and started cleaning it by hand like I do with my other guns. After finishing the first side, I started using the cleaning kit and I realized that my initial thoughts and reactions to this product were wrong. This is a great kit to have on a workbench, in your kitchen, bathroom, hell, even in the bedroom (although the misses might not agree with the latter). I finished cleaning in about 20 minutes – a record for a novice such as myself to have cleaned and Frog Lubed my AR for the first time.

While trying to capture the use of the barrel removal configuration I decided to leave that up to the owner of JKL. I would have put my triumphant attempt at removing the barrel on my Sig M400 but I didn’t feel that a 20 minute video of me swearing at Sig Sauer for putting the barrel on with 150 pounds of torque was something of interest. You can find the barrel removal video from JKL here.

All in all I think this is one of the more helpful setups I’ve reviewed. The JKL Mobile Gun Vise enables you to build an AR on your kitchen counter, and then make adjustments at the range if need be. It’s a new concept and it’s executed perfectly. It is functional, practical and above all else; something that hasn’t been done before. I will gracefully admit that I had judged a book by it’s cover and was completely surprised at how wrong I was.

The Reason

I am shooting my AR-15, that I customized on my own with almost zero help (thank you Monkey for all your help). Accomplishment, a sense of doing something, completing it and enjoying every minute of it. For the first time in a long time I had something that helped me truly enjoy myself. Pure, enjoyment. Nothing else mattered in that shot, and every round that followed it. I loved it so much, I wanted to share it. As little as it was to give, I wanted to share ALL of it.

I had a feeling there were others out there, that were curious and frustrated. People who needed a source to learn or find guidance and were greeted with condescension and belittlement. I have some friends and guess what, big shocker, they felt the same way. Well we all have our individual talents and a desire to learn so we set out to see if anyone else out there had the same problems, the same questions, the same local chuckleheads at the local gun shop that did everything they could to NOT sell you a gun. And so FourGuysGuns.com was born.

We constantly prove to each other that there is more data out there. We test each other in everything we do from rate of twist, to grains of lead and grains of powder. We constantly try to prove eachother wrong so we can actually get to the right answer through research, just to prove who is right. That there is more real-world experience out there that actually is willing to help. There are people that want to teach and help get you to be as happy as I am in that picture. You could be that happy.

The days of Mr. Know-it-all and his demands for you to humbly kiss his ring and beg for his expert advice are dying away slowly. As a community of New and Future gun-owners, we have the ability and the resources to get the answers we seek. We can do it in a non-threatening and welcoming fashion. We can make mistakes. We can LEARN without relying on the old way of doing things. Listen, I don’t have all the answers or the actual experience. As a matter of fact, I was raised in an anti-gun household. I never touched a gun until I was about 25 years old. I may not know a lot, but I am willing to share EVERYTHING I can give if it helps just one person be safe. If it helps one person not to feel belittled when pursuing this hobby/sport. If I can help ONE person find the part, the position, the stock, the grip… then I sleep soundly and am happy.

At some point, people are going to have to take a hard look at how they treat people new to the sport and actually wonder why it is so hard to fight the anti-gun campaign. When you treat everyone like crap who is new and curious, you’re bound to create some bitter enemies.

Personally, we like our fans around here and wouldn’t trade them for anything. In fact, we actually do what we can to GET them more gear. All four of us do everything we can while working full-time jobs, supporting families, paying mortgages and rent to help this community not because we think we know more, but because we are willing to help.

Thank you to all our fans that help push us to do more everyday, and not make me regret a minute of it.

Revision Military Ballistic Rated Sunglasses Review

I picked up the Revision Military Vipertail Sunglasses and instantly noticed one thing; they feel no different than any other sunglasses I’ve picked up or worn in the $100 price range. They are extremely light-weight for starters, I couldn’t even tell I was wearing them. As far as being functional sunglasses, again, I noticed no difference compared to a pair of Oakleys or Ray-Bans when it came to functionality as well as comfort. I complained in the video that these felt tight on the sides of my head, which after doing the video review I realized was actually a good thing. They stay in place and don’t move, and on top of that they outperformed my normal setup because of this feature. They contour to the part of your head where hearing protection makes contact around your ear, making a perfect seal when you are using the two in conjunction with one another.

I recently started thinking about eye protection, having only used cheap protection in the past, and realized that if I ever had a weapon malfunction or any debris unexpectedly flew out of my gun I could lose my vision forever. The price tag for these bad Larrys is right around $60-$100 depending on where you buy them. Can you put a price on losing an eye? I know I can’t. Revision Military makes a solid product that looks and feels exactly like a pair of sunglasses should, only when something goes wrong with these on your melon you may need a few stitches, reconstructive surgery and a good pep talk; but you will eventually be right back where you started, with both eyes open.

EPIC Failure Drill: Webisode #1

We went over failure drills, had some camera issues, etc. All in all it was a great day at the range. This is the first of hopefully many Webisodes we will be doing for the site as we all get together more often. Hope you like what we put together. Any questions on the gear or snide remarks about our skills, feel free to leave ’em!

The challenge is firing two shots to the body followed by one to the head with a reload followed by the same process again. Whoever gets the shortest time wins (missing equals 1 second added to the total time).

This is my rifle, Sig M 400 Build

This is my rifle, there are many like it but this one is mine.

As I always say, I am a professional hit man in the realm of 3M products. There isn’t a piece of paper, staple or bit of tape that isn’t shaking in it’s metaphorical boots when I open my range bag. I wanted a good 3 gun competition rifle so I built this gun to scare paper. When I did this build there were three points that stood out as being the most important to me; how I shoot it, weight and functionality.

The way that I shoot is pretty standard, I like extending my arm all the way out to the end of the barrel rather than hold it by the magwell. There were two purchases that resulted from this; the AFG 2 from Magpul and the Sampson 15” Evolution Rail. The long rail allows for a place to put my hand, close to the end of the barrel. I have the AFG 2 mounted close to the end of the rail to accomodate my shooting style. I like it like that, some people can’t stand it, I don’t really care what other people want in my rifle as I am the one who will be shooting it.

The most important thing for me in this rifle build, aside from taking into account my shooting style, was putting as little weight on it as possible. The Samson Evolution Rail system comes with two 2” rail segments and one 4” rail segment that can be mounted octagonally around the rail system, which could come in handy. Other than that the rail system is a looker, and a light one at that – this rail weighs in at 13.2 oz. For a 15” rail to come in at 13.2 oz is impressive and adds very little weight. The free-float rail system was the main weight concern, as I was set on doing the 15” which tends to get really heavy until you spend four or five hundred dollars on a rail system. I picked this one up for $140.

I started with a functional firearm and a chrome-lined 1/7 barrel. So how do you improve it’s functionality? I added three things onto this gun to do just that. I won’t go into a lot of detail, but I’ve embedded links to each individual review. Muzzle devices can change the way the gun shoots… literally change it entirely. I put the EFFIN A from Ares Armor on mine and it works perfectly (Ares Armor EFFIN A Review). The second improvement was the Mission First Tactical BUS Milspec Stock and their ENGAGE pistol grip. Both have huge amounts of storage for extra firing pins, batteries and Twinkies. (Mission First Tactical BUS Stock Review)

All in all I am very happy with my rifle. I have the EOTech 512 optic on it since it uses standard AA batteries and I really wanted an EOTech. I love how quickly I can acquire a target with their optics and I know it won’t break unless I really try to break it. There are more and more low-price, high-quality options on optics and we will review some soon, since not everyone wants to drop four or five hundred dollars on an optic.

When all is said and done, I enjoyed this build and I’ve been asked to put together a build list once this article was finished (for now) so here it is:

  • Sig Sauer M 400 Enhanced
  • Mission First Tactical BUS Stock
  • Mission First Tactical ENGAGE Pistol Grip
  • Magpul MBUS 2 front and read flip up sights
  • Magpul Trigger Guard
  • EOTech 512
  • Samson 15” Evolution Free Float Rail System
  • Magpul AFG2
  • Troy Low Profile gas block

Flash Hider vs. Compensator

Who knows, maybe you have just gotten to a point where you know a little more about your rifle and you know you want to make some modifications that change it’s performance. This article is here to help you understand the differences between the two muzzle devices and how they will change your rifle’s performance and possibly your shooting style.

Let’s start with the Flash Hider since it is something that in some form or another comes on most off the shelf AR’s. The Flash Hider’s main purpose is to… you guessed it…hide flash. This is what most off the shelf AR’s usually have threaded on the barrel.

When you fire a round, it is in fact a small explosion and all that fire, gasses and fouling have to go somewhere. As the gases move up the barrel they are still burning, and as long as there is more to burn, you will get a nice big ball of fire as seen here with no muzzle device.

A Flash Hider usually redirects the gasses and combustible material along the edges of the devices instead of the big ball of incendiary material that comes out when left unchecked. By channelling those gasses in an outward pattern away from flame, the flash is “suppressed” and you get significantly less fire balls out of the end of your rifle. The one pictured here is a Smith Enterprises Vortex.

A Compensator is a different situation altogether, but sometimes you can get the benefit of both worlds. A Compensator, or muzzle brake’s main purpose is to redirect those escaping gasses in a purposeful direction. When you direct gasses in a specific direction, the amount of actual pressure built up in your barrel can actually counteract some of the effects of recoil. By directing gasses in an upward, a sideways or even a reverse direction can help aid in muzzle flip or rise and even help reduce felt recoil or “kick”. Many have a combination of these directions to achieve the desired result. The Compensator picture here is a Troy Industries Medieval Muzzle Brake.

This particular Muzzle Brake ports up and to the sides which is pretty easy to see when you get a good look at the direction of all the fire. This shot was selected because it clearly demonstrated where all that combustion and force is being directed so you, the reader can easily distinguish how it works.

At the end of the day, it is not a roaring campfire, this image was taken from 2 frames of video shot at 120 frames per second. New shooters can probably expect to actually “see” a burst like this infrequently (Read: Not Often at all) as your vision is primarily focused on the target or the sights. Cameras catch everything, as do Night Vision Goggles which is why most AR’s ship with Flash Hiders more often than Compensators.

All images were shot using a standard 1:9 twist chrome lined barrel with bulk Federal 55gr. FMJ 5.56. I hope this helps differentiate the different devices so you can better decide which one is right for your needs and your rifles main purpose. As your knowledge and rifle evolves, or maybe you build a rifle, who knows…? Well, you will thats who. Enjoy the video!

Volquartsen MKII, MK III Accurizing Kit

This is where Volquartsen comes in. Featured guns on Top Shot during season 3 and 4, Volquartsen Custom knows everything about your shiny new .22LR and more over, how to make it drive tacks like no ones business.

Taking apart the MK III is no easy nor fun task, but it must be done regardless. So why not make it more accurate while you are in there cursing it? To help you out, we have a video coming out this week to assist you in taking the elusive MK III apart, installing a Volquartsen MK III Accurizing Kit, and putting it all back together. Well let me tell you, you will be happy you did if you decide to be one of the brave souls to tinker with the MK III.

The Volquartsen Accurizing Kit comes with extended bolt release, target hammer, target sear, target trigger with overtravel screw, and some nicer springs plunger. No stoning required (not a drug reference). What stoning means, is that the components aren’t just high grade metal, they already come with a high polish and smooth finish so you don’t need a honing stone to make it smoother. You will just screw it up, so leave it alone and enjoy the beautiful parts. And remember, YOU ARE NOT A GUNSMITH! (unless of course, you ARE a gunsmith, in which case, what are you doing here?!?)

The best part about installing a kit like this is, there is no mystery which part is which. It is very easy to lay the parts out and not only KNOW which ones are the superior parts, but every tiny piece of metal reassures you that you made the right decision to brave this challenge. At a glance, not rigorous inspection, you can tell the difference in factory versus Volquartsen, hands down.

Once installed, the trigger breaks at a mind boggling 2 and a quarter pounds, and the trigger reset is so smooth you can barely even tell it re-engaged while wearing gloves. It is as if the sear is made of one smooth piece of glass with no ridges or breaks. Beautiful. Volquartsen Custom make fantastic parts from Accurizing Kits to Sights, from barrels to fully assembled custom weapons.

Customer service is the icing on the cake and I still cannot understand how they manage to grow as much as they have and still maintain that one on one attention that we experienced individually. Monkey and myself on several occasions have called in or emailed or both for help on a part or assembly and the staff at Volquartsen if not the owner himself guided us through. We HIGHLY recommend checking them out. Tinkering, customizing and upgrading a gun is one of the best ways in my opinion to learn more about it and your abilities. I mean seriously, you can’t be a racecar driver if you don’t know how an engine works right?

Did you go out and buy one of these kits…. If you did, check out our install video

The Only Prescription for Muzzle Rise

The EFFIN A comes in clever packaging. The EFFIN A comes in a pill bottle with the prescription for muzzle rise written on the bottle. When you open the bottle there is an alan key, 32 set screws, 3 friction washers (Alternative to crush washers) , and instructions on installing it. The instructions are easy enough to follow for installation and tuning of the compensator.

The first question from everyone is asking how this stacks up against other compensators. The thing you need to understand here is that this is a whole new breed of compensator. I don’t think it is fair for a comparison at all, as this particular muzzle device can be tuned to perform like any compensator you could buy with a little bit of messing around with how your set screw placement.

Another thing to pay attention to during the video linked below is the actual lack of flash. Now I know this isn’t a flash hider, it is a compensator and they are two different things. We noticed a significant reduction in muzzle flash using cheap bulk ammo which tends flash like a camera. So that being said the other compensators we used that day seemed to make the flash worse and this one almost eliminated it. Just a note worthy thing to bring up.

The EFFIN A is stackable, so you can put as many as you would like on your gun. Ares Armor recommends a maximum of two stacked on one another and with the very small amount of clearance (5 mils is what I measured) here I would make sure you listen to them.

The end result was that the guns muzzle stays flat with only 4 set screws in the EFFIN A. This is capable of pushing your muzzle down and reduce felt recoil. This product does everything they claim that it will and does is much better than you could expect. If you are in the market for a compensator I would be surprised if anyone could find a problem with this product. Check them out over at www.aresarmor.com, stay safe and don’t forget to check your chambers.

EOTech XPS2-Z Zombie Stopper Review

Enter the L-3 EOTech XPS2-Z “Zombie Stopper.”

Built on the same framework and quality our armed forces and LEOs have been known to swear by and trust, the XPS2-Z is everything the world has come to expect from an EOTech sight. It takes a pounding, holds zero, is highly visible, clear and has a clean target acquisition… we could go on for days.

What separates this model from its older brother, the XPS2, are some new spins on what a lot of new gun enthusiasts are clearing the shelves for… ZOMBIE gear. Lots of big names are doing it but only a few can say they are doing it right. EOTech took a great product and merely added some flair to it. With a cool reticle fashioned in a biohazard symbol they were still able to incorporate their 65 MOA circle and their 1 MOA dot. This aids in range estimation as well as provides a level of consistency with shooters who have used EOTech sights before.

On the outside, again, tough, rugged blued metal shroud protects the glass and laser. It is tagged with some laser etched graphics that help set it apart from the rest. Biohazard symbol on the top and a skull with the words “Zombie Stopper” on the left-hand side. On the right, all business with windage and elevation. And all this runs on a single CR123 battery for about 600 hours on max brightness. It isn’t a heavy optic and because it’s built on the XPS2 framework, it takes up less rail so you can add a magnifier with rail to spare. Considering most “Zombie Gear” comes in a variety of neon greens, red and oranges, all the etchings on the outside still maintain EOTech’s professional aesthetic.

I have shot using EOTech sights before, Monkey has an XPS2-2 and Lou and Superbowl run a 512 I think, or as we call it… the banana. I am really growing fond of them and this Zombie Stopper is not helping my wallet, that’s for sure. Say what you want about the zombie culture. Love it or hate it, it is one more factor aiding in getting new shooters interested in gun ownership in a wider array of demographics than we have ever had in our country’s history. If your buddy wants a Zombie Stopper, know he is getting an EOTech, and it’s still a bad ass optic.

Trojan Tactical Kydex Review

In a time where anyone who has a toaster, YouTube and some blue guns thinks they can make Kydex holsters, Trojan Tactical has put Function before Form, and we were STILL ooohing and aaahhing as we were taking the stills for this review.

John over at Trojan started making these out of a need, not a want. As an active member of the law enforcement community he doesn’t just build these holsters for the sake of being lightweight and long lasting, he makes these holsters Tonka tough! From the thickness of the Kydex Trojan Tactical uses, to the girth of the actual rivets and screws used to attach the loops to the sheath. These holsters are built for hard labor and they look and feel the part.

Trojan Tactical sent us one of every model they make to test on our Sig Sauer handguns. We were sent a Scabbard, a Light Bearing Scabbard (Scabbard LB), and an Inside the Waistband (IWB) Scabbard they call the “Trojan Horse IWB”. We actually received 2 Scabbards because Lou is a bigger guy and loves his P220, the rest of us rock the P226.

We instantly noticed the difference in Kydex used vs. other manufacturers we have seen and used. It seems about 50% thicker than most that we see and made us stop what we were doing and size it up further. The rivets that hold the Kydex together are standard issue looking, however the hardware that holds the belt loops on place just looks, feels and is beefier than most. The belt loops were big and rigid without being cumbersome or impeding, and slide on and off the duty belts and riggers belts with ease.

Many companies put a lot of emphasis on the “detail” in the Kydex which refers to the imprint of the actual firearm on the holster from forming to the weapon during creation. This is not the case with Trojan Tactical. Thicker material seems to yield less detail, but an increase in durability and ruggedness. In John’s line of work, I think one is definitely valued a lot more than the other, and as cool as it is to see the checkering on your gun on the outside of your holster, I would rather have one that will take a beating and then some while maintaining its retention and mold on the inside. Truth be told, I am already talking to Trojan Tactical about doing another LBH in Red and Black because I liked it so much. Check them out at trotac.com and on Facebook!

Mission First Tactical Battlelink Utility Stock Review

So let’s get this straight, we are reviewing a stock, Mission First Tactical’s BUS Battlelink Utility Stock… and to further clarify, I murder paper for a full-time hobby. This gun will never be in the dirt, it will be in a range bag in a closet protecting my boxers and zombie targets. There are a ton of applications that Mission First Tactical has designed this stock for that are outside of anything I will ever need, so today we bring up the strong points for fellow paper murderers.

We are not comparing this stock to others in this review but lets point out a few things:

  • This stock has an MSRP of $129.99 but it can be found as a sub-$100 stock with a quick Google search.
  • This stock has a big meaty recoil pad on it. There are manufacturers that will charge you extra for a bigger, shinier recoil pad but the larger pad is included with the Battlelink.
  • The storage space in this thing is untouchable. I could store my first born child in this stock… well, more like a 6 pack of AA batteries and a small package of silica
  • This stock is also a really modular platform, allowing you to attach a ton of accessories to it that can be found on their website.

The angle. I’m going to give this it’s own paragraph for two reasons; the first is that I’m not a professional writer and like breaking rules, the second is to point out how much I like this really small detail. The most noticeable difference between this stock and others I’ve used (outside of this one being the most comfortable), is the angle at the back of the Battlelink. There are other companies that do this as well but I’m pretty sure Mission First Tactical has the most aggressive that I have seen. It is made for easier/quicker target acquisition when rolling the gun over armor, and it does the same thing for kicking that zombie paper’s ass. When going from a rested position to shooting position this helps get the gun on your shoulder quick and on target even quicker.

In summary… www.missionfirsttactical.com. Check them out now… Good products at a good price with outstanding quality and a modular platform that will last as long as your rifle!

Troy BattleSight Di-Optic Review

The Troy BattleSight DOA is a step outside the box that, at the very least, I enjoyed.

I love Back Up Iron Sights (BUIS) because in my opinion, that should be an item that never fails. They should be rugged, they should be functional, and they should help me shoot accurately. I saw this new diamond shape on the Troy Industries website and wanted more information, but alas, not too many reviews out there. And as shocking as I know it is… many of the reviews were done by none other than older, stuck in their ways people. That doesn’t make them wrong, just biased. I wanted to try them.

We contacted Troy and they were kind enough to lend us a pair, so here we are to share our findings with you. Since I have rambled on already, and there is a video of me at the range going over a lot of this with pretty visuals and bloopers I will get right down to it.

Solid metal feel with a black oxide finish, they are constructed with stainless steel and 6061 Aircraft Aluminum. Just for testing purposes I didn’t even use lock-tite, and 90 rounds later…nothing budged. The folding aspect of it was great with a solid and positive locking feel in both the up and down position. They lay super flat at less than a half inch off the rail with nothing hanging off all willy nilly to snag on anything. Similar to many other manufacturers, you can instantly tell when you hold them or mount them on the rail, that this is the difference in Military Grade versus something on Amazon or eBay (no offense).

The diamond aperture, is where all the drama comes from. Since the peep sight was brought to be, it has been round. The eye is round, the eye naturally focuses round, round round round round. The Troy BattleSight, is a diamond…What gives? Well, to be perfectly frank, I have no idea. But I like it.

When using the larger aperture on a standard peep sight, I personally have a hard time centering the front sight post inside the circle. On the BattleSight, it was very easy. The corners and corner markers allow me to actually have reference points for the front sight to rest in in an instant, and I could acquire faster. Will this work for everyone because it worked for me? Probably not, but just because something doesn’t work for you, does not make it a “gimmick”.

I generally have trouble with the front sight on my rifles and have to paint them to aid in visibility. I don’t think I have ever shot so well with unpainted BUIS’s let alone painted ones as I did with the BattleSight. The video was not the best of my accuracy handi-work, but I was impressed nonetheless since I know what a terrible shot I am.

To wrap things up, I liked the BattleSight. I Would probably still add some paint to the front post as well as to the smaller aperture, but overall, I had fun sighting them in and getting to use them. Usually we work with smaller start-up companies to get our hands on great outside the box ideas like this in the marketplace. It was genuinely refreshing to try a product like this from a well trusted and battle tested name like Troy Industries. After talking with their team, I am real curious to see what they do next with their line of sights.

Rapid Access Magazine Pod (R.A.M.P.) Review

RAMP stands for Rapid Access Magazine Pod. What separates this magazine holder from the rest of the “high-speed” gear is several factors. Things that make this product so amazingly simple and durable, you have to appreciate the reliability of the simplicity (if that makes sense). It’s kind of hard to break parts that aren’t there. It is a one piece, polymer mag holder with hooks that work with PALs and Molle gear. It’s shape and material have superb magazine retention and can be mounted anyway you can get those hooks in. The inventor explained to me what he was going for in development of this product, and the reasons behind it, and the more he spoke about it, the more I needed to get my hands on one.

The RAMP allows you to mount your magazines “inverted” to the way you are used to mounting, stacking or putting in pouches. I say “inverted” in quotes because after you use this thing for a bit, the “traditional” way to hold your ammo in pouches or on your rig seems a little “old fashioned”.

You literally just have to get a good grip, yank down on your magazine, and then slam up into the weapon. You can no longer talk about “wasted motion” in weapons manipulation without bringing this product up. I have seen some fast reloads, redi-mags, composite mag holders with rubber bands and magnets and RAMPS wins hands down for speed, wins again for reliability, and by the way, they weigh nothing.

So keep in mind, I have to talk about Reliability carefully just to cover my own rear. I have had the product and used it for maybe 2 days without flaw. In talking to the inventor however, he has frozen it and used it, heated it and used it and even built a machine to slam a magazine in and out of it 100,000 times. If you cycled your mags 10 times a day, everyday, in the RAMP, that is 27 years of use. That is a lot. The only time I had any hiccups at all is in the instances where I did not insert or pull the mag out like a big boy or got cocky with it. In with authority, and out with authority. This system is just awesome and remains on my chest rig. I now want a new rig just so I can deck it out with more RAMPS.

Check them out at Gear4Grunts.com for $29.95. They come in a wide variety of colors to match your gear. Gear4Grunts is a veteran owned business, and the RAMP was designed by the same man. Tired of the current system employed by everyone, the weight and dirt and crud that gets in….this man is PASSIONATE about his product and he should be. We would recommend RAMPS to anyone who wants their: reloads fast, bullets right side up, bullets clean, gear lighter… we could keep going on but I think you get it. Video is up too, not a huge demo, but definitely a little better than all this reading.

AllAK47.com Custom AK Test

  1. I have never been an AK guy, but if my Glock opinion can be changed, may as well give the AK another go.
  2. Until I met Owen from AllAK47.com, I had shot approximately 1 AK and held about 3.

Now we can move on.

I was at the range, firing my totally badass .308, which was my equivalent to my first car in excitement level, but comical when you look back 16-20 years later. A friend of mine had asked to check out the range I was a member of and so I invited him along with promises of being able to shoot his AK-47. So here I was, a proud, green, gun owner that knew everything about to fire my first semi automatic rifle and it was like losing your v-card. A lot of hype with lots of disappointment, some injuries and shame. It kicked like a mule, I couldn’t get the sights lined up, it was nothing like the movies…I was stunned. Oh, and FORGET MOA, I couldn’t get Minute of BARN DOOR! Garbage, all the critics were right, yada yada yada. I swore the AK was not for me and brushed it aside to never be seen again.

Fast forward several years to 2012. I am more humble and open and wish to revisit some things cast aside in my youth, and a new friend known only in the beginning as AllAK47.com is dying to change my mind on the AK. I welcome the opportunity.

Now, I am not the technical sort, I am the touchy feely sort. I have no specs, no statistics, no basis on how this is supposed to feel, shoot, weigh, etc. Owen took care of that and came prepared. My enjoyment of his firearms is pretty clear in the video and I think he has changed my mind on the AK. Keep in mind, I still love my AR, my proficiency with that weapon grows every time I touch it. However, I will no longer cast the AK aside as junk, or inaccurate crappy hardware. Owen has proven that with enough knowledge and know-how, even the AK-47 can be a tack driver, be super customizable, and be a mean rifle that fires a mean round.

If you haven’t already skipped the wordy parts and gone straight to the video, pay attention to the black and gray camo AK as it is all stock vs. every other one Owen had brought for testing. Pay attention to recoil mitigation, pay attention to muzzle rise and pay attention to the fact that he had to show me how to operate the rifle and by the end of the video I was doing pretty good. Not great, just good. Do anything enough, and repetition builds proficiency. Someday, I will have Owen make me my own, but until then hopefully our buddy over at HausofGuns.com will do a better write up than us, with all the specifics gun AK fans really want to know about. After all, we are just humble old noobs over here.

Enjoy the Video!

Armory Racks Review

This, is Armory Racks Gun Rack; and it is a fantastic way to organize your safe, add an extra hand to the workbench or many other tasks you can think of applying it to.

Ebbs over at HausofGuns.com introduced us to ArmoryRacks and so we looked it up and instantly had to check them out. Just through email alone they are professional, knowledgeable and courteous. I was actually taken back at how much they knew about their product, their customer base and their interest in feedback to better improve their product. If every company in industry was as eager to be better as Armory Racks, we would be in Flying Cars like they promised me back in 2nd grade.

You may have seen an idea similar to this before at gun shows and trade shows. Wooden dowels, coatracks, hot glue and zip ties. All things made to hold many many guns and still give you the butt/grip first to pull it out and hold it or use it. Armory Racks has taken this menagerie of ideas and not only made it strong, reliable and simple to use but it looks good too. Let us give you the details if you haven’t already left to check it out on their site.

Armory Racks come in 1, 2, 4 and 8 gun rack solutions. While personally I would reserve the higher capacity racks for range day and fantastic safe space usage, I am sure there are many applications others can think of. The 2 and 4 however can be used for smaller safes, or in my case, the workbench. There have been times as a gun nut that bringing just one gun to the range just isn’t going to do it. I may be in a .40, .44 Mag, 9mm and .22lr kind of mood, and when the day is done there is hell to pay on the bench. The 2 and 4 gives me more workspace while allowing solvent to dry, waiting for lube, just barrels, the possibilities are endless. Since they mount barrel down and stand vertical, space and parts are neatly contained and all together.

These things are (I think) made of steel and then Powder Coated in shiny smooth sexy-time black. Combined with the Armory Racks logo tastefully placed on one rack arm, they are solid and sturdy all while looking great. If they look too frail to you, then have a gander at the 7” barreled Ruger Super Blackhawk Hunter .44 on there barely even making it flinch with 2 other guns. The arm did not bend, give or do anything more than wiggle. I am actually pretty sure they could make a 5.56 model that was bigger and longer for AR’s and not have to even increase the diameter all that much. It is a mighty little device.

Overall I am more than pleased with Armory Racks and will probably purchase many more in the near future and over time. Armory Racks make a fantastic, inexpensive product that does what it is supposed to and then some. They are prompt, courteous and are always trying to improve and we here at FourGuysGuns love and appreciate companies and products like these.

Make sure you check out ArmoryRacks.com too and share the Like love on their FaceBook Page too!

Breaking in Your Rifle Barrel

So the one thing that I am realizing as I get into shooting is that finding your own truth’s in the name of learning, sometimes is the only way to go. We can all listen to opinions of people that do it (Whatever “it” may be) for a living, but do they really know what they are talking about because they are old? I am young, 26 to be exact and I have learned a lot in my short life. Nothing says that anything I have learned is correct, it will only be as correct as the person that taught me, knowing something wrong at 60 just means you have been wrong allot longer than I have!

First of all there are a lot of different opinions on how to break in a rifle if you have one that works for you I couldn’t be happier, this one works for me. You will need two things to properly break in a barrel on your rifle. One is a good carbon cleaner which every company produces. The other cleaning product you will need is a copper solvent also produced by most companies like sweet’s(Research your copper solvent, there is a little more to them than carbon cleaner).

The pattern is 5 in this section. In each section when I say clean I mean both carbon cleaner as well as copper solvent. I will list the Pattern as it could be confusing if in paragraph format…

  1. Repeat this section five times
    • Take one shot
    • Clean
    • Change the target out, number it (Recommended, not needed)
  2. Repeat this section five times
    • Take two shots
    • Clean
    • Change the target out, number it (Recommended, not needed)
  3. Repeat this section five times
    • Take five shots
    • Clean
    • Change the target out, number it (Recommended, not needed)

What you are looking for is a difference in consistency as this process progresses. If you start to notice less and less drifting in your shots (Drifting – Difference between 1st and second/third/fourth/fifth shot) then you can stop as you have accomplished your goal. This is why I recommend changing the target, you can tell on the progress of the break in process as you see the difference in consistency change progressively if you are diligent in changing and numbering them.

The last thing to remember is that most people tell you clean your gun before you shoot. Your gun will be least accurate with a clean bore, so if you go to the range and put 20 rounds through it, don’t worry about cleaning it. If you are going to a competition tomorrow and you just cleaned your rifle, get to the range and put 10 rounds or so down range before heading to your competition. That in mind I personally don’t strip copper out of my barrel as it will not damage it, my rifle is a 1/2 MOA rifle, it was 3/4 MOA after about 1000 rounds (The predicted lifespan of my barrel) I stripped the copper out of it for the first time and about 30 rounds later it was back to a 1/2 MOA gun. This is why I trust my own experience, I have proved everything I have read wrong, and I am still 1/2 MOA, so I refer back to my favorite saying that you can not hone your shooting skills by running your mouth in a gun store. Take care and be safe!

ATI Talon Tactical Shotgun Kit, Scorpion Recoil System Review

Like a lot of gun nuts, I enjoy recoil. It’s like a nudge that says, “hey there…I am bigger than you”. Like riding a clydesdale to battle, you feel even more empowered when you can control a large caliber and operate it effectively.

With a setup like the Talon Stock kit, the proof is in the pudding, you no longer have to just “grin and bear it”, you can actually stay on target, feel less impact on your body and shoot more rounds for a longer amount of time. The recoil system is made up of a special compound of energy absorbing rubber located in the key areas of where you feel it most. Mainly the butt stock and the pistol grip as most energy is expelled rearward and upward upon pulling the trigger. This kit also comes with a fore end that is lightweight, makes solid contact to the factory slide and does not wiggle or budge at all. A pretty impressive connection method actually ensuring that there is zero play in the reloading mechanism of the shotgun.

I personally, as you can tell from the video, am not a fan of finger grooved pistol grips. Many times the hand model companies use to create these grooves never seem to feel right to me. I don’t have mutant or freakishly large or small hands, it’s mostly a personal preference thing. ATI however, has a fantastic pistol grip. The backstrap of the pistol grip has a shock absorbing softer compound than the rest of the grip which the palm of your hand is most grateful for when you send a heavy round out the barrel. The harder finger grooves assist in keeping your firing hand planted to where it needs to be to maintain your grip and accuracy shot after shot.

The butt pad is a great mix of absorption and grip. Several times in just manipulating the weapon I found it getting hung up on my loose shirt and appreciated the butt stock not moving as it easily gripped my shoulder without budging. Even after 3” Turkey load and some slugs or even lighter loads like bird shot, combined with the pistol grip and the rubber coating on the fore end, this 590 stayed locked in and tight through firing.

All in all, the Talon Tactical Shotgun Kit with the Scorpion Recoil system is an excellent value. It was an easy to install system with just the right amount of frills to not only make your shotgun more customizable, but to also to absorb some of the energy that slams you every time you fire it. There is a lot to be said about appreciating recoil, but you shouldn’t have to sacrifice accuracy and shooting enjoyment to do it repeatedly. ATI takes care of that with this system and not at an extravagant cost. This system made Monkey’s Mossberg 590A1 (aka Meatstick) a LOT of fun to shoot and made me just a tad jealous.

Click Here to Check it out on ATI’s Website….

Munitio Billet 9mm Earphones Review

Let’s start here: I am no aficionado when it comes to reviewing electronics. I do however run about 5 miles a day training for ToughMudder and greatly appreciate any piece of audio equipment that does exactly what is advertises.

There are two tiers of the 9mm Earphones on Munitio’s site. The first is the Billet which is priced at $79.99. The second is their Standard Issue Titanium Earphones which are $179 with the inline microphone and $159 without the microphone.

I received the Billet earphones and the first thing I noticed when opening the box was that even the packaging clearly shows the dedication to quality.

Now onto the fit. I have burned through roughly 10 pairs of earphones in my training for the past 6 months. Some ran me well over a hundred dollars and others cost much less but there was always something that killed the deal for me. These fit in my ears perfectly and come with three different earbud sizes. The three sizes they provide with every pair seem to accommodate every set of ears here at FourGuysGuns so I can imagine that is pretty universal.

The last topic of discussion is what I’m sure everyone wants to hear… no pun intended. These things sound amazing. I have had Bose, Beats by Dre, Sennheiser, Sony, you name it I have owned it or tried it and these just aren’t in the same league. I’ll set my pride aside for a moment and tell you the first thing I wanted to test was the bass, so I fired up some dubstep and wow. I actually felt my brain vibrating. The audio distortion is non-existent on the Billet 9mm Earphones. Every detail is precise, there are no sloppy highs that hurt my ears and no bass distortion with a perfect midrange.

All in all, we tested the cheaper of the two and I am blown away at the results, can’t go wrong for a sub-hundred dollar pair of earphones. Check them out and believe me you won’t regret picking up a pair of these.

P.S. We received no compensation for this article from Munitio or their affiliates. These earbuds are legit awesome!!

Spartan Village Kydex Review

From Weapon holsters, to magazine holsters and sometimes cool rigs, knife and tomahawk sheaths, hell, I have even seen a Bic lighter Kydex holster. Monkey and I needed some sweet new Kydex for our Sigs and TLR’s, so Monkey found Spartan Village and built us some quality shenanigans.

So, funny story about ordering Kydex holsters. Apparently, they are molded SPECIFICALLY to your model, and any attachments that may be on them. This causes some time and craftsmanship to actually take place, so be prepared if you want one from just about ANY reputable manufacturer to have some wait time. If you want Kydex and you want it tomorrow, you’re pretty much boned. Spartan Village was no exception to this wait time, however, their Customer Service was and is phenomenal. Since we are total noobs at ordering stuff like this they walked us through the different options, what takes place, lead times and when we could expect them. I think Monkey is going to their next company picnic he had so many internal communications with them (joking).

When we received the holsters, it was just as awesome as getting a new gun (almost). It was SUPER light by comparison to leather, it was sturdy and dare I say…immoveable in an unflinching rigidity. I have never seen or dealt with anything like this so I was instantly in awe. The craftsmanship from Spartan Village is top notch, the rivets are perfect, screws are good and tight, the level of detail in the actual Kydex is literally just shy of saying Sig Sauer they got the kydex so detailed in. Even some off the shelf Serpa type holsters have a flexibility and give to them, this thing felt like it was made of solid bone. Awesome.

Now keep in mind, it is not always perfect. The molds they use and the guns/mags you have are probably not going to be 100% perfect. Not a problem. Just a little bit of hairdryer (Heat Gun will jack things up if you are not prepared for it) and some sliding your magazine or gun in and out will immediately fix the issue. Try that with leather, where break in usually requires oils, rubbing, tying, repetitive motion and age. This holster was so rigid, my front site was gutting plastic out on every draw until I spent 5 minutes with the wife’s hairdryer and we were good to go.

Anyone looking for a great Kydex holster in many colors with lots of options available for weapons and light combos too, needs to go check out Spartan Village. Not to mention its a good looking site too! Great product, great customer service and not too bad of a waiting period. Check them out at www.spartan-village.com

The Wall Drill

This video demonstrates one of our favorites with a couple variations to help you gain more muscle memory through repetition.

Nothing will ever beat live fire experience, however, dry-fire practice and drilling on front sight focus, trigger control and manipulation helps build the mind and muscles on what is supposed to happen after the flash and bang. Send us your feedback, drills and ideas and we will look into them more if it is something that works for you! With that said, enjoy the video!

If you missed our original article on Bullseye training, then check it out Here!

Beretta PX-4 Storm Review

Make: Beretta
Model: PX-4 Storm (Type F)
Caliber: 9mm

The model tested was the Full-Size Type-F model chambered in 9mm. It comes with some pretty nice features that have begun to be pretty standard on many modern semi-autos. There is a interchangeable back strap, this model has an ambidextrous safety, there is also an ambidextrous interchangeable magazine release. The safety also doubles as a de-cocker and rolls the striker out of alignment with the firing pin. The finish is really nice and all edges are (sort-of) blended. Beretta uses a standard 3-dot sight system with a luminous glow in the dark coating. Gratuitous brochure facts out of the way, let’s get to the dirty bits.

I loved holding that Beretta. It has a very high grip that gets your hand nice and high and in line with a solid shooting grip. A couple of the guys didn’t like the stippling which is abundant on the front and back strap of the PX-4. It actually grips so high, that if you go to shoot a 1911 immediately after, you have some awkwardness engaging the grip safety. It isn’t really an aggressive stipple so to speak so much as a larger stipple. If you have dainty hands then you may want to wear gloves, or man the hell up (no offense ladies).

Being a n00b, this was the first time I had ever seen a Rotating barrel. The thought behind this is that it rotates the blowback energy outward radially and has less front to back recoil. Now since the model I tested is a 9mm, it is kind of difficult for me to validate this claim. In the future I hope to test a .40 S&W or .45 ACP caliber model where I am more used to the recoil. I had no issues with it and it seemed to assist in making a really slick sound when racked.

The trigger has a long, light pull with a clean, not crisp break. The reset however is quite solid with a positive and firm CLICK when re-engaging. When the safety is on, it swings almost freely with nothing but one small spring providing return. It almost feels like an old waterpistol in safe, slightly spongy with a beginning and an end and not a single catch in between. When the safety is off, it operates in both DA and SA with a good feel of the hammer pulling back short and smooth.

The field strip is similar to a Glock with a pull down notch on either side of the frame forward of the trigger guard. Unlike the glock however, there is no awkward “grip” that has to be done to disengage the slide from the frame rails. Simultaneously pull down, the slide will pop forward a couple millimeters and you are free to remove. Pretty easy actually and with smaller disasemble contact points, doesn’t seem to have any hang-ups of the original 92FS which has since long been corrected. Like the scene in LethalWeapon (which sequel escapes me either 3 or 4) where Jet Li grabs the muzzle of Mel Gibson’s Beretta and strips it with one move. Not happening on the PX-4.

She shoots straight, has good recoil mitigation with all the stippling, is ergonomically wonderful to hold. Magazines are solid, go in and out with ease, hell I even reloaded faster on this gun than most guns I own. Now for my personal pet peeves. I love the visible and ambidextrous safety, yet hate getting bit by the “Bat-wings” on a Slingshot style reload. Using certain ammo over others can produce an occasional stove-pipe which in my experience is uncommon on an entry level 9mm to be finicky with ammo.

Overall, if you wanted something newer, lighter and more ergonomic than the 92FS from Beretta (as classic as a 1911 at this point) this is an option. At the price point of $550, I don’t see the Storm making a run at the Glock die hards, but is a nice pistol nonetheless as we have come to expect from a fine manufacturer like Beretta. If you happen to see this gun at a good price, even used, I wouldn’t hesitate. It is a good shooter with a quality pedigree behind it. Personally, i give it a 3.75 out of 5.

A day at the Sig Sauer Academy

One detail to note is that we were not able to pick out of Sig’s whole class selection for this deal, just Basic Practical handgun skills 101 and 102. We naturally chose the 102 class as it was for people who understand what a gun is and what its basic functions are, which is all of us on most days.

We showed up to the academy and were greeted by a gorgeous pro shop stocked with every Sig knick knack, doodad and whizbang you could think of. We walked past the pro shop after drooling over some of the guns we will never own and made our way into the classroom.

Lets start off with this description of the class…

Overview

  • Handgun Selection Considerations
  • Support Equipment
  • Shooting Basics – the Importance of Proper Grip, Sight Alignment, Sight Picture, Stance, Trigger Control and Follow Through
  • Presentation of the Handgun from the Holster to the Target and Safe Recovery Back to the Holster
  • Administrative and In-service Loading and Unloading Techniques
  • Static Shooting Positions
  • Cleaning and Maintenance

With the purpose of the class being understood, we were not expecting to be rolling around the floor poppin head shots like we were James Bond. We started with a 150 minute classroom session going over what sight picture is, gun safety devices (locks, safes, trigger locks), drawing techniques, holsters, and how to operate on a hot range (all guns loaded). After this session, and half way into a boredom coma, we got up and walked to the range. First thing we saw were steel targets and we all got a little giddy.

Now I don’t need to go through the individual drills – we can show you those in some of our videos in future posts. The one thing I will say is that all things considered, the class went over what it advertised – grip, sight alignment, sight picture and drawing safely from a holster. I am comfortable using a firearm, and I would like to take the classes at Sig where you roll around shooting like you’re James Bond but I knew there were holes in my grip methods and didn’t realize there were many ways to gain sight picture.

All in all, I would recommend that you do your research before taking any class but Sig Academy gets a pretty close to perfect score in my book. The class taught what they said it would. It was a little bit of classroom time but not a huge amount and the instructors were amazing at giving individual attention to people in a group situation. People that couldn’t hit the wall they were leaning on up to people like us who shoot pretty darn good all benefited from this class.

The Ugly: (Updated) The No Longer Ugly and now very helpfull summary

UPDATE 4/12/2012
Went back to the Sig Sauer Academy after they had made some adjustments to the way that they stock their Pro-Shop and they had almost every gun in the shop in stock. The pro shop manager was very helpful and it seems the changes they were making as we went to the Academy the first time were almost an overnight difference. Now I can truly say that both the class and pro shop expierence were amazing. No problems at all and I would reccomend this to anyone. We bought two M400’s as well as two handguns and had no issues getting what we wanted!

UPDATE 4/6/2012
Posted on the Sig Academy Facebook page and recieved a response in about 5 minuets as well as an E-Mail. I was called by the proshop manager who is now in the process of finding me a shiny new M400. Good customer service. Looking for my next class… any suggestions?

Just wanted to throw this in there as Sig should be a little embarrassed for themselves on this front. After the class we walked back into the shiny pro shop with full intent on buying a gun. I picked up the Sig Scorpion 1911 full size and it was perfect. I would take it and start the paper work but there was one problem; it wasn’t in stock. No big deal, I got over my attachment to this gun and found literally 36 other guns which were also all out of stock… So I decided today is the day I will buy a Sig M400 Assault Rifle, it’s as good a day as any. I walked over to an employee and said I wanted the M400 enhanced… well, guess what? The M400 is out of stock as well, and not just one model but all six they had on the wall. So the 20% discount they offer for taking a class is for sweaters and patches because you can’t get a gun. One of the employees there told me to email him and he would set a gun aside which I did nearly a week ago. I still haven’t heard back so I don’t think they really kept a log of it. Anyway, I wanted to tack this on the end as it has nothing to do with the academy per say but did affect the overall experience.

Reader Request: How to Apply Sight Paint

I personally have no problem with saying, I have difficulty with certain weapons, seeing and aligning the front post. What is worse, admitting you need assistance or blaming the weapon/sights or parts for your own inadequacy? Personally, I would rather hit what I am aiming at.

Picked up Bright Sights from Amazon (no, really…they actually carry a lot of gun stuff) for I believe $8.95, WAY cheaper than a new front sight. I have no problems with the factory 3 dot system, I just wanted a better differentiator between the two. Similar to many revolvers I have, I went bright orange on the front which looks pretty good in the pictures.

Watch the brief video and see how simple it is.

You will need:
Toothpick(s)
Q-Tips
Clean Patches
Hoppes no.9 solvent
Bright Sight Sight Paint
Patience

GunSlick Gun Cleaner Review

So we stop at our favorite fudge and arms store (Yes they have fudge, were not exactly skinny, takes more than just guns to get us going) and we found GunSlick, now for the most part I am stuck in my ways when it comes to… well, when it comes to everything.

We have this cool thing called a website where we try to help people find new things, so in the spirit of helping others find cool new products I picked up some GunSlick and gave it a try. All in all it’s great stuff, I had good results with it, check it out.

Ruger MK III Takedown

Well I am here to tell you that while you can treat YOUR weapon like that, I am not going to. While I might not clean this super reliable pistol after 100 rounds, I do so every 500 rounds. There are a few tricks taking apart the Ruger MK III, hopefully after watching this video you won’t spend and where near as much time cursing your new .22 as I did. Let me know if you have any questions and thanks for watching.

Supplies Needed:

  1. Rubber Mallet
  2. Paper Clip
  3. Scribe (Looks like a screw driver with a hook on the end)
  4. Delrin Rod (Non-Maring Plastic Rod, so you don’t scratch your gun)
    Wooden dowel works as well
  5. Empty Magazine

Jerk that Pistol!

There are many aids and drills you can do to correct issues you may have with accuracy; so to start things off we are including a link and reference target to help understand WHAT went wrong during that last shot or string of shots (groupings) which will help identify the issue and help resolve it. Image and references include Pistol-Training.com.

Take a look at the image below.

jerk-pistol-1

This is a clear case of tightening and/or jerking the trigger. What that means is, everytime I pulled the trigger, I was tightening my grip, a natural flinch in the mind to prepare for a recoil jolt. It also is an indicator of not having consistent trigger control ie: letting all slack out of the trigger between shots and not utilizing the reset of the trigger for a shorter pull, and greater accuracy. Simple adjustments like holding the trigger ALL the way to the rear after you break a shot and then SLOWLY letting off the trigger will unveil to you, the reset. When the mechanism inside the trigger assembly “Clicks” back into place before the trigger has fully come pack to it’s starting position, this is the spot in which you want to HOLD FAST. From this point, you can fire again and you can do it with a MUCH shorter pull length (travel) as well as with less resistance. Yes, I know the target is upside down in the picture I can assure you this is how it was hung, but for the sake of argument, lets, turn it around.

jerk-pistol-2

Let’s now pretend THIS is how the target was hung. This is a sign of Heeling or recoil anticipation. This is different than flinching in the sense that the follow up shots are not broken up with enough time for reaquisition and the heel of your hand is pushing forward DURING the shot as opposed to flinching BEFORE the shot. Most common (in my experience) during multiple shots and rapid fire. Keep in mind, that if you are training yourself for self defense, this is very much an acceptable grouping FOR STARTERS. If the palm of your hand covers 75% more of the holes or more, it is consistent. But if you want to thread a needle, you need to identify where the problem in your mechanics are and practice, practice and practice some more until you, your brain and your hardware all work together.

Train for what you intend to use your pistol for, but bear in mind, everytime you pull the trigger it affects the way you pull the trigger with EVERY other gun you own. So if you train for say, bullseye pistol, simply the way the scoring is done will drive you to increase your accuracy through grip, trigger control, breathing, etc. This will affect the accuracy of your shots with a larger caliber more and more creating tighter groups and better accuracy. And for those out there saying that a .22lr has infinitely less kick than say… a 1911 with .45ACP, you are correct. However, bear in mind we are talking about your brain and muscle memory. Your brain will react differently to a .45 than it will to a .22. But the more you practice on the aspects you CAN control, like trigger control, flinching, heeling, etc… the more the lines in your brain blur from the caliber and recoil simply because the habits and muscle memory are there. All the vets I have seen shoot and talk to can put .45 rounds through the same hole at over 75 feet. They are not superhuman, they are trained, and you can achieve the same results. All you need is practice and a guide to check the errors.

Do a search on the internet for bullseye pistol and you will find a wealth of articles and help to achieving greater accuracy and knowledge of yourself and your weapon. With enough practice and patience, you can achieve a zen like state of mindset while shooting, just rest assured, it isn’t happening tomorrow. When you are “self taught” like most of us here at FourGuysGuns are, every bit of knowledge you can attain and properly use can be helpful, just remember that videos and reading are never replacements for DOING. So get yourself out there and jerk that pistol!

Take a look at our Wall Drill Video to get some at home dry-fire ideas.

Breaking it in, not breaking it

There are a lot of things to consider after buying a new gun.

Your gun may malfunction when you take it out the first few times and when you think about it, why is that a bad thing? Well, it’s not a bad thing and we can go over why.

First point to all of this, you are breaking in a new gun. If you bought a bunch of awesome new upgrades to turn your pimply prom date into a supermodel you should probably keep your hands off. Take it slow, familiarize yourself with the basic workings of your piece and break in the gun as it comes from the manufacturer to reduce variables and add the awesome new supermodel parts later.

So you go to the range and put a few hundred rounds through that new beauty you probably already have a name for and she (if it’s a she, it’s cool to give it a guys name too, but that’s just not something I would do) starts jamming, mis-feeding, not feeding, biting you (not normal) or any other sort of malfunction. What do you do? First off, keep in mind the whole purpose of breaking in a gun is heating it up and cooling it down to get the metal to wear where it needs to and temper the metal so it will shoot more rounds reliably as it gets older.

When you bring that new beauty out for your first time, load up 60-100 rounds at a time, at most. If you don’t have that many magazines don’t stress, it’s no big deal. Run some drills for reloading or whatever you’d like. Remember, it’s her first time, don’t be too rough or she may never act right again. Getting your gun too hot can damage it, so with that in mind, 60-100 round’s will heat the gun up. After you murder that evil piece of paper with those 60-100 rounds let the gun cool down.

Two things to pay attention to during the break-in period: lubrication and ejection.

Lubrication is important. Do not run your gun dry. Use a moderate amount of lube prior to the first time and keep it wet while breaking it in or you will find excess wear on the innards when the gun is taken apart and potentially wear down components that help the gun function. If needed, lubricate it in between drills.

The second thing to keep track of is the ejection pattern of your empty shell casings. The ejection of the casing is a good indicator of many things. If your slide if heating up and causing friction, it will not eject as far (there are other indications as well but this is easy to notice). A 6-8 foot ejection should stay consistent but if the casings start falling closer and closer, stop running the gun and give it a break. You will notice after the first few times you bring her out that this will lessen as the metal is conditioned and all of the parts become more accustomed to work together.

With all of these basics in mind, after running about 1000 rounds through the gun it will most likely be good to go. There are some things that can cause this to take longer, such as having a compensator on your gun. A compensator reduces the amount of force being put on the parts in the gun so naturally it will need more time.

Don’t worry while breaking in your new gun, malfunctions are going to happen and there is nothing wrong, however, after you are done breaking it in and it is shooting consistent, brass ejection is consistent, it’s not eating lube like Pam Anderson on-set, you want to look at malfunctions that happen repeatedly. Take a picture if possible, talk to a gun smith…

I know it’s a bit of a read but I wanted to include everything I could. Post your questions in the comments below or, of course, on our Facebook page!

Frog Lube (pt.2) The Aftermath

All day long, the last thing on my mind (if at all) was how wet or dry is my gun. It wasn’t until after we had rolled around in the dirt for a bit that I started to question “should I add more lube?”. The Frog Lube was running great, everything was still slippery and you could see the fouling as well as any dirt or funk STILL suspended in the juicy parts… just floating around in the small drops. Well, since I don’t trust any lube based on my poor lube choices in the past, I added more.

Not a lot, just the same amount of drops to the bolt and friction areas I had added just two days before. Guess what, unnecessary. All I did by adding more was actually cause the gun to start showing excessive lube through the seams between the upper and the lower. Not bad, just excessive. This also helped the dirt and sand cling to my gun a little better than before too. Nothing bad happened to the weapon inside or out, in fact, the frog lube even started putting the exterior sand and dirt “into suspension”. All I had to do was wipe it off. Beautiful.

During cleanup, as you can see in the video, the Frog Lube CLP works exactly as advertised. Every piece of fouling, carbon cake and grime began to just wipe away. Every single piece of the rifle that had been heated and treated with Frog Lube just peeled or slid away with mild rubbing and wiping. Not only that, I don’t have to get in the shower for a full hazmat scrub down after weapon cleaning to get rid of the petrol smell my former methods of cleaning would produce.

To sum it all up, Frog lube is a little more time intensive than most CLP systems in the beginning, but only because of the heat gun. The time spent in preparation, like everything else, pays off tenfold in the end. It smells great, is actually kind of fun to put on, cuts down cleaning time, is a cleaner AND lube in one bottle and flat out… JUST WORKS. I still believe every cleaner does something better than another and I am not throwing anything away, but I would absolutely recommend Frog Lube to all my friends and people at the range. Frog lube…it just WORKS.

Be warned, one of our longest videos yet. I trimmed it down but tried to maintain the visuals of how good it works too. Just cut a bunch of my ramblings and boring parts.

Weaponcraft Training

So as I sit here, waiting for the billionth gigabyte to upload into the damn FCPX and render, I look through the photos from our adventure up to Maine. There is a company up there called Weaponcraft that offers several classes ranging from Defensive and Carry pistol to Shotgun and Carbine classes.

Man, were we in for a surprise.

Two very unassuming gentleman sized us up when we rolled in and were not all that impressed with us here at FourGuysGuns.com. At least thats the first impression I got. We talked briefly about what we were here to do, how we would like to set up the cameras, what we had in mind etc., but we wanted to emphasize that the RSO’s (Range Safety Officers) also known as our two instructors Rick and Dan, that we did not want to impede ANYONE else’s learning or experience(including our own!), be in harms way or make their lives more difficult. They told us alright, thanks for coming, now go get set up. So off went the two fat kids to gear up and set up.

We had a an eclectic group of guys that were in the same class as us, ranging from some survivalists (who shot REALLY friggin good) to people looking to go into 3-gun as well as some new to the weapon entirely. Then there was us, and whatever group you want to lump us into. You stick all of us in a subway car and it would be a stark contrast to what we were. It was amazing. Everyone had a personality, there was ZERO ego, no one judged anyone by either their gear, their brands, etc. There was a lot of healthy good conversation about everything from EOTech versus Aimpoint, magnifiers, Chest Rigs, Kydex , Tacos, tax stamps and even some other random conversations like BPA free water bottles, yoga and child rearing. Maybe it is as Robert Heinlein said “An armed society, is a polite society”. All I know is I would do it all again with that same random group without hesitation.

The instructors were fantastic. You could tell they had done this quite a bit and that they were just as eager to get to the good bits as we were. They went through all safety protocols and rules and demonstrations unhurried though. They never let us do anything without a full explanation and demonstration, and even though Dan was a lefty, we don’t hold it against him. (Dan could easily kill me with EITHER hand, for the record) He taught me especially some very simple things that got me instantly a better results with a few small adjustments over the course of the day.

The repetitions, the motions, the constant reinforcement. Do it again, again, again and then when you think you’re good to go DO IT AGAIN. Do yourself a favor, if you ever take a weapons training course, don’t fill all your mags and go there thinking you’re smarter. Constant UN-loading of mags was far worse than loading mags with the specified rounds for the drills.

The further into the day we got, the more the pace seemed to pick up. The later it got, the more we felt like we didn’t have enough time. Each cycle was anticipated, done, and had then gone by far too fast. Then we move, then we move and shoot. Now we are starting to call each other out and having a blast the entire time. There were even a couple instances where we are actually talking about the previous shot or talking to the instructors and out comes the bark “GUN!” or “UP!” and everyone snaps to the stance, up comes the rifle and methodically shots are fired. I have even more respect for the instructors and classmates after watching the videos we took than while I was actually going through it.

To sum it all up, if you have the the opportunity to take a professionally run weapons course…DO IT! No one cares what parts are on that gun if you can’t shoot it for squat. You can have had guns for a long time, own a million weapons, watched some DVD’s and YouTube, it doesn’t matter. Get a professionally trained instructor and a couple days of them putting you through the paces and you will learn more about your bad habits and what you are doing wrong than you ever thought possible. But even moreover, you will get them fixed and be better. Look at it this way, even Tiger Woods has a swing coach, don’t you think maybe someone else can help you pull a trigger, reload, move while shooting or reloading? The guys at Weaponcraft sure knew a hell of a lot and we are dying to go again.

Stay safe, always check your chambers!

Frog Lube Review, Pt.1

FrogLube is a metal CLP and lubricant (all-in-one) that is made of all-natural, biodegradable magic. And to make it even more fun, it’s smells like wint-o-green lifesavers. Delicious. Frog Lube promises to “embed deep into the metal’s pores” and eats away at petrol based lubricants and cleaners. Well, I tried to be a one-take tommy toughnuts and ran some video late last night on my Frog Lube V-card.

It goes on best with applied heat, if you choose not to watch the 8 minute video, buy a damn heat gun. The hairdryer is just not enough to get the receiver and larger parts warm enough fast enough. Small parts, no prob, but big parts, get a heat gun. Just be careful, you don’t need it so hot you need welding gloves to hold your parts. Spread the paste with the supplied brush and it goes on like butter that sat on the counter all night.

Have at it and feel free to use the heat to help coax it into the nooks and crannies. Wipe clean with the supplied microfiber towel and prepare to be impressed, I definitely was as you can see in a couple parts of the video.

We are going to do this in two parts, so look this week for the training video as well as the follow up to this Frog Lube video.

All in all, I like it so far, we shall see how this minty green paste with a n00b running a weapon as horrible as possible.

Stay safe, always check your chambers.

Check out FrogLube at their Site: http://www.froglube.com/

Why get a concealed carry permit?

Before starting off, let’s just say you trusting me with you personal well-being (ie: staying out of jail, getting arrested) is a stupid bet. Prior to following any direction I give you, please make sure to keep in mind that I live in one state out of 50, so I can only guarantee 2% accuracy. This article is to help you understand some of the reasons as to why you should get a concealed carry permit, even if you don’t want to carry concealed.

I have a concealed carry permit simply because there are a lot of things that a permit can protect you from. I have a small trunk problem (talking about my car, not my girlfriend), well its really a matter of putting too much shit in my trunk and never cleaning it but moving on. So spur of the moment range trips sometimes require putting firearms in the passenger cabin of my vehicle. This is a no-no in some states when you don’t have a permit and can get you in some serious trouble if you happen to meet your friendly neighborhood state trooper.

My father is a hunter and had his hunting license taken from him for four years. This was because Mr. Friendly Fish and Game walked up whilst my father was tying his shoes as his loaded rifle sat in the back seat of his car for about 30 seconds. Mr. FFG took his hunting license and put an additional 3 year suspension on it for this.

Well, you guessed it, I’m bring the point back. In this instance a concealed carry permit would have granted my father the right to hunt that day as well as telling Mr. FFG to eat a… well you get the point.

This article is simply written so you can take a look at how something you may not feel you need actually offers you protection for things that could be simple everyday occurrences and not even close to unsafe. Protect yourself and find out what your state’s firearm laws are as well as concealed carry laws. You may be doing yourself a favor. Again, research for yourself, laws change every day.

Here are some helpful references… again, make sure they are accurate. The best bet is to call the police station in your governing town and ask any questions you may have! I am just some guy on the Internet no matter how bad-ass I claim to be.

Metal is Metal… right?

Today, all we are going to do is explain some of the basics so when you see it in the Ad print, you can understand and appreciate the differences and how they affect things like cost, lifespan, wear and tear and modification. I won’t be actually recommending any one over the other, merely explaining the differences. You are going to have to do a little bit of homework on your own depending on what firearm and purpose of use for that firearm. We are just de-mystifying for those that have no idea.

forging

Forging

Forging is one of the oldest forms of metalworking. Forging produces very strong dense packed molecular structures that can take a pounding. Knights and Samurai had their steel repeatedly hammered and heated and hammered and cooled to get the steel as dense as possible to withstand beatings. More modern forging methods are not exactly equivalent to the old samurai blacksmith, but have a similar effect. Metal gets beat and pulverized into a specified shape before moving on to its next stage of development. Forging usually does not have great detail to it, but makes up for it in brute strength.

casting

Casting

Casting is not exactly a new kid on the block either, making molds of stuff is nothing new. That is what casting is in a nutshell really. Liquid hot metal gets poured into a “cast” or mold make of usually a sand mixture that holds the shape of a predetermined form. This allows for many molds to be produced quickly while maintaining a higher level of detail than any of the other metal forming methods. While casting is not as strong as forging, it is still a reliable method for metalworking for many industries that may be considered far more damaging than firearms.

stamping

Stamping

Stamping is a very popular way to get an exact replicant shape from sheet metal very quickly and easily. Combine the striking factor of Forging, with the mold factor of Casting and use sheet metal instead of solid metal or liquid metal and you have stamping. Stamping is usually reserved for things like car parts, pots and pans or AK-47 receivers. Sheet metal lays down on a half mold, big ass stamping tool slams down on sheet metal with other half of mold and PRESTO! You have a stamped part. Edges are removed and cleaned up and you can very quickly make hundreds of parts out of one large piece of sheet metal. Not so hard to understand why there are billions of AK’s out there no huh?

milling

Milling/Machining

Milling is a newer form of metalworking (by comparison to the others) and was generally developed to be able to work with materials like aluminum which can be cast, but not forged. Milling is a technique that uses, bits and machinery on VERY precise plots and paths to execute an exact shape, cut, angle, depth… you name it. You take a solid block of metal (aluminum, alloy, steel, whatever) and you have either a machinist or a program execute a precise measured cutout using a spinning bit from a high torque machine to the exact specification. Think grandpa whittling, cutting away excess to reveal the desired shape…but with 1 million times more precision. Milling leads to very light, very sturdy parts that are unmatched in precision fitting (aside from good ol’ fashioned hand made) on a production line. A gunsmith hand fitting parts is the only thing I can think of that produces tighter tolerances and fit, but you pay through the nose for that.

There are many ways we can achieve desired shapes and functions from our weapons, and believe it or not, your gun probably has multiple or all of the above types or metal in it somewhere. Knowing more will hopefully aid you in the future when looking and understanding which tool for which job.

Hope this helps you in your next gun purchase or modification, remember to stay safe and always check your chambers.

Cited sources:

Committed to our viewers

The purpose of this article is to explain why we are here. We were all just sitting around in a bar one night and the idea for FourGuysGuns came from us talking about a bunch of chuckleheads we had to deal with when buying something (I don’t remember what). We decided to make a site with a little ball-busting, where people could go to get friendly advice for all the questions they would otherwise be treated like a moron for asking.

We will always answer questions for our viewers. If it isn’t enough for an article you will get an email from one of the four of us. We will not post crap… we are better than that. None of us have any blogging, writing, photography or filming experience outside of day-to-day so we do not claim to be experts in the field of well… writing stuff like this.

One thing we are good at is ridiculing each other on the “crap” produced by one another until we feel it is good enough for you! Please, don’t forget we are here because we want to answer your questions. Don’t hesitate to ask, and please keep checking our site for new material, we can’t wait until we need more than four of us to help all our viewers out!

Thank you again, without any of you we would just be a bunch of guys writing articles for our friends… and that would be weird. More material coming tomorrow. Please keep sharing us. With more viewers we can do some pretty amazing stuff with the contacts we have been building with more than 20 manufactures large and small.

I Bought An AR-15… Now What?

So this series of articles is as much a learning process for me as it hopefully will be for you. The least I can do is pass the information I’m learning and researching along to our readers.

This isn’t my first AR. I didn’t know much about the one I used to own and sold it well before I should have. So for the purposes of this series, we’ll just say that this one is my first.

A couple weeks back, I traded in a rifle that I never used because of the cost of ammo and purchased a new Smith & Wesson Model M&P 15 Optics Ready rifle. Retail price is over $1000, but you can find this model at most gun stores for under $900.

I had a few reasons for buying this particular model. First was the price. It cost me just over $50 after my trade in. Second, and most important, was that I am familiar with the brand and their reliability. And third, was that since it is pretty bare bones in configuration, I wouldn’t be wasting money replacing/upgrading a perfectly adequate part.

My goal with this project is to see how good of a gun I can build with add on parts without breaking the bank. I can’t justify dropping close to 2k on a new rifle and then another 2k on parts, add-ons, and accessories. Also, I really wanted to have a good topic to write on the site with and thought this would be a good beginner article to discuss with our readers and get feedback and questions as the series goes on. So this is the first article on the site that we’re turning on the comments below.

First thing I did the day i bought the rifle was bring it over to Whitey’s workshop for a proper cleaning.

This particular rifle’s handbook says it requires a cleaning before use. Most new guns need it, BUT, always check your manuals on new weapons.

After learning how the parts go together and what their purposes was etc etc, I’m pretty confident with a little bit of practice I can clean this gun in well under 1/2 an hour. It’s not too hard, but something every gun owner should be good at to keep the equipment performing correctly. Properly maintaining and cleaning a weapon ensures proper performance for years to come.

The first step in this build would have to be some sort of optics, since this model didn’t even come with iron sights. After checking a few websites and doing some google searches (as well as talking to Whitey, Monkey and Superbowl), I decided on flip up sights from Magpul: The MBUS® Magpul Back-up Sights (gen2). This particular brand was decided on based on price and quality. The other guys have parts from Magpul, so I trusted their opinion. Word of mouth is one of the best ways to find good gear.

So, I’m going to pick those up this week. I’ll add a detailed video on installation and sighting for those of you who haven’t put sights on an AR before (myself included). It should help close that knowledge gap.

The next few posts in this series will focus on proper AR cleaning, purchasing and installing rails, and a few smaller accessories.

Photos: Smith & Wesson Website

Current Specs (as of 3/10/2012)
Smith & Wesson Model M&P15OR Rifle
Suggested Retail $1,069.00
SKU
Model M&P15
Caliber 5.56 mm NATO / .223
Barrel length 16”
Action Semi-Auto
Barrel twist 1 in 9”
Front sight none
Rear sight none
Overall length 35” extended / 32” collapsed
Stock 6 Position CAR Stock (S&W)
Weight 6.5 lbs

How do I MOUNT this thing?

Mounting Options

Most rifles will have 1 or 3 options and they can vary by make and model. Many hunting or sporting rifles will have “tapped” holes. What this means is there are already pre-drilled holes in the receiver or barrel to accommodate either scope rings, mount or a rail. There are also Weaver and Picatinny rails (MIL-STD-1913) which provide a universal platform for many different types of mounts and optics as well as other accessories.

Rings

At the end of the day, pick the best rings for you, your budget and your optic. To help determine what’s best for you, here are some things you want to keep in mind when putting glass on a rifle. First, you want to mount the scope as close to the barrel as possible while maintaining a good cheek weld and a comfortable and full eye relief. Some brief explanations:

Eye relief is simply the distance between your eye and the lens of the scope you look through to obtain a full and clear picture of the target and crosshairs. If your too far away, you will get a black circle or “fog” around what you are trying to look at, then you start chasing your head and eye around the reticle trying to get a good sight picture, breaking your cheek weld and screwing up many chances you had at placing an accurate shot.

Cheek Weld is your cherub cheek putting a smother on your butt stock whilst holding the rifle in a such a manner as to fire it. When you are holding the rifle, looking down the sights and holding the rifle to your shoulder, your cheek should be suction cupped to the butt stock.

Meanwhile… back before we went off on a tangent. Rings. Select rings that have as few points of failure as possible. Excessive screws, pieces that screw together, bases that have multiple pieces before you even get to the scope rings themselves. You want to have a solid, low center base. You want to attach to the rail or mount points and secure the scope with even dispersion of pressure.

Mounting

For the most part, the optic itself is going to decide for you where you will be mounting the rings. Both on the rail or mount itself as well as on the actual optic itself. Once your optic determines the best place for you to tighten it down, SNUG it down DO NOT tighten yet. We have some more adjustments to make.

Place your optic in the rings and fully attach the rings, but again, DO NOT TIGHTEN! It actually helps to leave play for right now to help set our proper eye relief. With the rings attached, scope in place and nothing flopping around, what we are going to do is hold the rifle, get a good cheek weld and look through your optic. is the lens full of the target? Is it hazy and dark around the edges? Do you feel like you are looking through a smaller peephole than the size of your lens? This is why we did not tighten it down. You can slide the scope back and forward until your eye relief is perfect for you. If you need more/less than the optic will allow you, time to re-examine where the base is mounted and move it back or forward accordingly. Snug one of the rings down to hold your set eye relief in place and we are ready to move on.

Securing

You are going to want to do the optic first. Don’t go pulling every screw out, otherwise you are going to have to do your eye relief all over again. For best results use either a vise or stand that allows you to level and firmly hold your rifle in place. You will also need some Blue Loctite and a SMALL level similar to what we have pictured here.

The rifle fore and aft (butt to muzzle) does not have to be perfectly level for you to get this right, but as close as you can eyeball is best. The reason for this is your mounts are set, they can only go in and tighten down one way. The scope is also all set front to back since again, the rings will only allow you to go a certain way. The CROSSHAIRS however, need to be level. So we place our level on the elevation turret (the top one on most optics) and get the little bubble squared away. Once all is level, the eye relief is good to go and you like where everything is placed…we can begin tightening up all the screws.

Tighten

Blue Loctite is your friend, but keep in mind you DO NOT need copious amounts of it. After shaking, a drop or two on clean threads is all you need. Start with the Scope ring you did NOT snug down to hold eye relief and level in place. You don’t need superhuman strength, just get them one past snug until you get all of ring screws all done up. Think about changing a tire and lug nuts, you cant tighten one all the way down and then move onto the next. You have to spread the pressure around evenly to properly seat the optic as well as reduce risk of pinching the tube on your pretty scope.

Once one is done, you can now do the other. Once they are both done, tighten them all up equally so that nothing budges. From there, you can probably handle the Loctite and screws or disconnects on your rail system or however your rings attach to the rifle since those are only going to go in one way.

This is a really long read, but properly mounting your optics will allow you to focus more on making your rifle the precision piece of hardware it was meant to be. By doing it right you can focus more on your rifle’s Zero, trigger pull and breathing as opposed to constantly fixing loose bolts and re-zeroing and troubleshooting all the things that that affect a good, accurate shot. If your equipment is to blame, your preparation is to blame. Simple as that. Create a setup where the equipment is solid and only you are to blame for inaccuracy. Then, PRACTICE! You get better at ANYTHING with practice!

I hope this was informative and helpful, be sure to check your chambers and be safe!

How to bore sight your rifle

There are a couple things that really need to be reviewed in this article, the first being actually getting the rifle able to put a round on paper, the second would be explaining how to adjust your scope properly based on M.O.A (Minutes of angle) at 25 meters which is where i generally sight in my rifles.

When you want to bore sight a scope the first thing you want to do is find a way to stabilize your gun as much as possible, any movement of the gun and this will just get more difficult. I generally use a range bag and a smaller range bag full of gear, I’m sure you could go spend money on some other fancy device, but in the end my rifle will shoot where i am aiming it, just like Mr. fancy pants with $200 in equipment. Boresighting a bolt action rifle is pretty easy.

bore-sight-your-rifle-2

Start by pulling the bolt out of the back of the rifle. Once you can see down the barrel you want to get the gun nice and stable and find the center of your target looking through the barrel. You are now aiming at where the scope should point, pretty simple.

bore-sight-your-rifle-4

The second part to boresighting is lining your scope up with the target (without moving it from its original position) which is equally as easy when you know how to do it. Now that your barrel is lined up with your target you want to adjust your scope until it lines up with the center of the target using your elevation and windage adjustments on the scope (Little knobs on the top and side).

After you think both line up just about perfect, bench rest your gun and take 3 shots. You are not perfect, we take three shots to make sure there was no human error involved.

bore-sight-your-rifle-5

So for example lets say we were 9 inches right and 8 inches down (As the average for the three shots). Most scopes are 1/4 minute of angle at 100 meters. This mean’s 4 clicks at 100 meters moves where you are aiming 1 inch, at 25 meters it is going to be 4 times that as we are much closer. So to move your scope 8 inches up you would do 128 clicks at 1/4 M.O.A. (some scope are 1/8 in which case it would be twice as many clicks). You would repeat the same calculation for horizontal adjustment.

Once you get your bullets going where you want them bring it to the 100 meter or where ever you plan on shooting the firearm the most and you will get it on paper which is all we were trying to achieve. Hope this was helpful enjoy and please feel free to ask any questions as always, I hope you enjoyed our FGG custom line drawing’s provided by Whitey.

M.O.A = Minute of angle, marked on most scopes. One minute of angle is one inch at 100 meters (so 4 clicks on most scope’s will move one inch) Two clicks at 200 meters is one inch and so on.

1911 Takedown

While it can be a challenge to get it apart and back together again, and not all of us have a GM (Gunner’s Mate) or a TM (Torpedoman’s Mate) that will help you out; that is where I come in. A few simple tricks that I have learned along the way will make this as easy to get apart as any of your other sidearms. Let me know if you have any questions and thanks to those TM’s that have helped me along the way.

Clean Your Weapon n00b! M-Pro7 Review

Unreliability, instability and just plain old filth? No sir! I have used several different popular tools, kits, sprays and solvents in the past few years and one that truly stood out to me is M-Pro7. After all, one bottle of cleaner and patches is definitely cheaper than the gun you just bought.

I use different cleaners for different tasks and different weapons I own, and I encourage everyone to use what works best for them and their needs, but if you have some spare money hanging out, you should definitely give M-Pro7 a try.

Unload weapon and spray on parts, let soak 0-5 minutes. Re-apply and use a bristle brush and patches to clean.

That easy. The brevity of the directions made me a little cautious, but I followed the explicitly. It smells like light hand soap, bubbles and sticks at first, is slick to the touch… and then slowly you begin to see carbon, fouling and grime melting away. Reapply and use bristle brush, nylon and brass for those that don’t know, I am not responsible for you taking your grill cleaning kit to a weapon. Everything foams up to a good lather and you feel less and less grit as you scrub. Wiping with a patch or rag leads to instant gratification as you are greeted by what seems to be a brand new piece of metal in your hands.

What about the bore, what about copper deposits? Let me tell you, I have never seen a river of blue turquoise flow out of a barrel the way it did after some liberal sprays in the barrel of my AR-15.

I recommend M-Pro7 to many new gun owners, not because others are not good, but because even to the untrained or inexperienced eye, clean is clean.

For more info: http://mpro7.com

Securing Your Firearms

So come on in, the water is great… so says Whitey, so here I go, cannon ball!

For my first article, I want to touch upon something that hits close to home. In the past week there have been several horrific instances where young children have gotten hold of firearms and the results have been catastrophic.

As a gun owner it is incredibly important to make sure that your firearms are not accessible to children. Hiding it under a robe in the closet is accessible to children. If as a 9 year old, I can find all the presents that Santa is bringing two weeks before he comes; your child can find your gun… I understand the struggle between having your firearms accessible and having them secure. An electronic gun safe is a great option for bedside deployment. With an electronic gun safe there is no fumbling or finding the key when you need to have instant access to your firearm. And since your firearm is locked in your little gun safe, you can keep it loaded; another plus when going to guns in the middle of the night.

As for your long guns, carbines and shotties, get a gun safe and lock them up. Not an option? You can remove the bolt from your long gun; the carrier assembly from you AR (we’ll show you how in a later video), and get a breach lock for your favorite Mossberg or Remington. Still not an option? At the very least there are trigger locks and cable-style locks that you can get. Most firearms manufactures provide the cable-style locks for free when you buy your firearm new. My house is just as safe with some of these employed deterrence’s in place and I have no fear about any child getting hold of my firearms.

I am a plankowner of FGG, a veteran, member of a local shooting club, a gun owner and a father; and I challenge you to make your home safe while still keeping it safe.

Get well Amina…

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