Apex/10-8 Molded Base Pad for M&P

We are pleased to announce an exciting collaboration between Apex Tactical Specialties and 10-8 Performance – the molded M&P base pad! This new product brings all of the practical design elements from our original M&P base pad in a more affordable format. Continue reading

IRON SIGHT MYTHS, MISCONCEPTIONS, AND STUFF, PART 3: Fiber Optic Sights

In the interests of full disclaimer, I did hit this topic earlier this year in a post about the “fragile fiber optic front sight,” but this iron sight series seems to be a good place to stick all the ideas together under one mantle. It seems that I am constantly fielding the same questions about fiber optic sights, so let’s talk about some of the myths and misconceptions surrounding them. Continue reading

MODERN SERVICE WEAPONS — IN RETROSPECT

It’s coming up on two years since I uploaded my first MSW post.  The process seemed a bit confusing, but the post went up after some help from Tim.  It’s now a cakewalk.  (The post was about shooting and lead “poisoning” hazards, HERE.  If you haven’t read it, please do. It could use some more FB likes. :) I even obtained permission from a well-known artist/chemist to include one of his nifty cartoons).  There are now almost 700 MSW posts; more than 40 are mine. Continue reading

The Problem with…NOW!

Okay…what is he talking about….

Too often it has been my experience with law enforcement shooters (and competition too) that the need to pull the trigger “now” supersedes the requirement of hitting the target.  It’s like a building pressure in the mind that shooters will settle for less than an acceptable sight picture and blast off a round..or two..or three.  It’s almost as if a self gratifying sound and feeling overwhelms what the process should be. Continue reading

Product Review: Diamondhead USA

I was recently introduced to the product line of Diamondhead USA by a teammate. I was really drawn to the VRS-T rail so I decided to set up one of my older 14.5” Colt uppers with a 13.5″ model and try it out. The rebuild also included their T-Brake and Diamondhead folding sight set. I was initially drawn to the VRS-T rail due to its triangular shape, which reminded me of my old M16A1. The rail is pretty slim and the scalloped cuts on the sides give a very comfortable and secure grip without being too aggressive to hands or gloves. The T-Brake was added at their suggestion. I’m not normally a muzzle brake or compensator fan but, I figured there was no harm in giving it a try. Installation of the rail was pretty straight forward although it does require a bit of skill and planning to do it yourself. The rail mounts to a proprietary barrel nut and also requires removal of the delta ring. Depending on length, you may also need a low profile gas block or cutting of your front sight base. The T-Brake installed easily and comes pre-drilled for pinning if that is needed for your situation. It is long enough that it will bring a 14.5” barrel over 16”. The profile is triangular and blends nicely with the VRS-T rail, making it aesthetically pleasing, if you are concerned by that kind of stuff. Continue reading

Practically Tactical

I had a fellow in a class back in the spring who showed up in head to toe multicam.  He wore a shemagh, a plate carrier, Oakley gloves, and Salomon boots.  He carried a state of the art LWRCi rifle, complete with BAD lever, 45 degree sights, EoTech and magnifier.

He had a very narrow stance, and when he fired more than a couple shots in a string, he would begin to rock back throwing his shots out of the 3×5 card at seven yards during rapid strings. Continue reading

Confessions of a Backpackaholic

It seems that I am on a perpetual search for the perfect daypack. Ever since Eagle popularized the “3 Day Pack” size, I have tried every variation of that size category in search for the ideal daily use backpack. I function in an urban environment, so what I really use the pack for is humping my daily collection of personal gear, and not trekking across the wilderness for miles on end. Continue reading

Situational Awareness at the Range

 

People are often prone to advocate that we should do everything in training exactly as we would do it “for real.” And in the vast majority of instances, I believe their argument has merit. However, we need to adjust our behavior sometimes based on safety concerns, range limitations, and other less than real factors, such as training ammunition. Frangible ammunition has been discussed here in the past but I am here to give you another example of how we need to be attentive at the range. The photo above shows a comparison photo of the front portion of a frangible round that was recovered from a shooter’s AR style rifle. Yes, the rifle type is important here. Continue reading

CONSIDERATIONS FOR THE NON-SWORN : HOLDING SOMEONE “AT GUNPOINT”

              Executive summary:  Usually a bad idea, often a very bad idea.

[This is a follow on to prior posts, THREATENING DEADLY FORCE : MUSINGS ON “BRANDISHING” AND “WARNING” SHOTS, and “CASTLE” DEFENSE: WHAT CAN–MAY–SHOULD–MUST YOU DO]

“Can/should I hold someone at gunpoint?” A common question when the topic of guns and defensive use of deadly force is discussed.  The questioner’s “gunpoint” hypothetical usually poses a home invasion, robbery attempt of the questioner, or “in progress” interdiction of someone committing a property crime, or a violent crime against the questioner or another person. The question is another one to which I respond with my smart aleck lawyer’s answer:  “I don’t know, can/should you?”  It lends itself to analysis similar to what I discussed in prior MSW posts on the use of deadly force –  my paradigm:

CAN / MAY / SHOULD / MUST

For the purpose of this post, holding someone “at gunpoint” is not necessarily muzzling the threatened person(s), openly holding an exposed firearm in any specific “ready” position, or a mode of “display” permitted or prohibited by a state “brandishing” statute.  I use the phrase here to mean the display of a firearm coupled with the express or implied threat that a failure to obey commands will result in the use of deadly force, that is, the gunpointer WILL shoot.  (If unprivileged, usually considered a serious felony, such as an armed assault or assault with/by deadly weapon).  Consider the following for your analysis of the SHOULD element of the paradigm. Continue reading

SIG SAUER announces the release of a factory P220 in 10mm

As first reported midweek by SIGforum.com, SIG Sauer has announced that a 10mm version of their venerable P220 will be released at the SHOT Show in January.

The fascination with a 10mm P220 first started with Bruce Gray of Grayguns, Inc, who accepted a challenge that the P220 10mm conversion “couldn’t be done”.  Bruce made limited conversion runs of all steel P220 .45 ACP pistols to 10mm.  This was a painstaking task as it took quite a bit to get the pistol chambered in .45 ACP to run the 10mm reliably.

The P220/10 will be have both SAO and DA/SA configurations, and will be available in 4.25 and 5 inch lengths.  It will be based upon their all steel P220 Elite series of pistols as it is being reported.

Bushmaster .308 ORC MOE Carbine Review

Bushmaster . 308 ORC MOE Carbine. Nikon 1-4 Scope with Nikon P Series Mount. Magpul M3 PMags, Vltor Scout Mount with Surefire G2 Light, HST Sling, MDFA Kydex FDE .308 Mag Pouch.

Having been a long time user (37 years) of the M-16/AR-15 family in 5.56, I decided that it was time I tried one in the caliber that the weapon was originally designed for .308. I’m a proponent of 30 caliber weapons and the .308 and 30-06 are my favorites. While the 5.56/.223 work well within certain situations, I wanted a more versatile caliber, with the ability to penetrate barriers as well as one that has more effect on target in a defensive situation. We also have large animals here in Maine and the 5.56 is somewhat lacking in it’s ability to address those situations.(Ever have to shoot an injured Moose?) Continue reading

Iron Sight Myths, Misconceptions, and Stuff, Part 1: Three Dot Sights

At some horrible, fateful point in the late 80′s or so, the 3 dot sight system assumed the throne of its seemingly never-ending reign of terror. Yes, I hate 3 dot sights, and so should you.

The basic rationale behind the 3 dot sight system is that it speeds up sight alignment by allowing you to theoretically line up the dots and fire. It’s not so simple, and let’s look at some of the issues.

Do I line up the top plane of the sights or the 3 dots when I aim? You NEVER ever ever ever ever ever line up the 3 dots to aim. Ever. Well maybe that’s a bit broad, but novice shooters should just reread that and stick with it. The 3 dots serve only to theoretically speed sight acquisition, but there is no guarantee that the 3 dots are actually in a correct line relative to your point of impact, so there is no reason to use them in such a manner. The most accurate and correct work is always to be done with the top plane of the sights. The only real exception is if you are in pitch darkness and the only elements you see are your 3 glowing tritium dots. However, that is fodder for a different article so don’t steal my thunder for part 27 of this series.

Those 3 dots are so easy to see and line up! When the gun is clean and you are dry firing in a relaxed manner in perfect lighting, sure. Once you start shooting, the front sight – where your attention should be – starts to get dirty from muzzle blast and the nice clean rear dots really jump out at your eye instead. When white outlined tritium dots age, it is easy to end up with three dots that are different colors and shapes thanks to paint outlines fading and chipping. Your eye wants a single area of focus, not three different ones.

Under stress you can line up the dots wrong by putting your front sight outside the two rear dots. Well I suppose that could happen, but go try it right now and look how wildly wrong the pistol needs to be aligned to have that happen. A little more dry fire time is in order if this happens to you regularly.

You’ll notice that the pistol in the photo above has the two rear dots blacked out with magic marker. It is a cheap fix, and one that I recommend be done on every factory sight set. This simple trick was passed on to me years ago by friend and mentor Ken Hackathorn, a guy who has forgotten more about handgunning than most will ever know. Marker does rub off easily, but the advantage of using marker instead of paint is that the rear tritium inserts will glow through the ink if you still want to use the tritium. Try this little trick and you may find that your front sight suddenly jumps out at your eye when you shoot.