First Look- SIG MCX Carbine in 300 Blackout.

Last week, I was out at the SIG Academy teaching a class when one of my friends who is one of their engineers showed up with all kinds of cool stuff.

One of these items was a suppressed SIG MCX in 300 Blackout.  I didn’t have a lot of time due to teaching, but I ran enough ammo through it to say without a doubt…….wow. Continue reading

Battle Belt Smack Down!

I come here today to review some of those super awesome belts that make your life better.  I’m guessing that someone smarter than me realized that wearing 50 lbs of mags, med kits and more mags on your chest rig led to pain and encumbered movement. They came up with MOLLE on a belt so you could carry more stuff on your waist and still have room for more mags on your chest.  They called it a “battle belt” (how cool…)  So now, if you want to be tactical, you need to “run” your gear on these new belts.  I do admit, it is more comfortable and functional than a standard “bat belt” I wear as a LEO.  Depending on your agency or unit, you might be able to ditch the old “leather” gear for one of these beauties.

The first one I’d like to talk about is the HSGI Battle Belt $79.  http://www.highspeedgear.com/hsgi/sure-grip-padded-belt-31PB.html

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Review: First Spear Nylon Duty Magazine Pouches and the Missing Link

First Spear’s Missing Links turns any MOLLE attachment accessory into a belt mounted accessory. The pictured pistol magazine pouch offers excellent combination of speed and retention.

Back in the day, I was a huge fan of Eagle Industries, a family-owned “tactical” nylon company with then forward thinking designs. They brought us products such as the MC-CIRAS releasable vest and an excellent modular plate carrier system that I still use today. The company was eventually sold to ATK, who also bought out Blackhawk Industries and also owns Federal, Speer and CCI. They still make tactical nylon, but most of their products go straight to government contracts and is generally unavailable unless purchased on the secondary market.

One of the products I liked quite a bit was the FB magazine pouch. This kydex reinforced pouch features a cloth backing for retention. A velcro secured strap folds back to front which allows the user to decide whether each pouch needs the additional security of the flap. These are now hard to find, especially in a belt mount model. Most pouches now are made for MOLLE type webbing. Continue reading

Revisiting the Glock Factory Extended Slide Stop

When I first started running the Gen 4 Glocks, I was fairly insistent that due to the shorter fore/aft size of the new frame, I no longer needed to use an extended slide stop with the guns. All of my Gen 3 Glocks sport some type of extended slide stop, but now with the slightly smaller Gen 4 frame I had found that my thumb was better able to reach the standard length slide stop. That all worked great until one day where I trained in the pouring rain…. Continue reading

REVIEW: Garrett Industries “Silent Thunder” OWB Holster

Having rekindled my love affair with the wheelgun, I found it necessary to procure a quality holster.  My usual, off the shelf, brand turned out to be a dismal failure.  Again, I turned to the Internet for answers.  While there were numerous high end options available for wheenguns, pricing and wait times were more than I was willing to endure.  I also saw Garrett Industries mentioned frequently in the same sentence as “fast”, “quality” and “customer service.”  I took a look at the website and saw the Silent Thunder OWB holster and felt it would be well suited to range and class duty.  The website listed a 7 business day turnaround time.  Seven business days later I had a shipping notice in my email and tracking information to show that the holster actually shipped, not just a label printed. Continue reading

In Search of the Perfect Pack: Vertx EDC Gamut

The Vertx EDC Gamut (shown here in Smoke Grey) is functional and fits into an urban setting without screaming “I’m tactical!”

For as long as I can remember I’ve had a sickness for backpacks. I’ve gone through the variety of tactical packs to include Eagle AIII packs in every conceivable color, the popular RAID pack, and countless other brands. One of my longtime favorites was the 5.11 COVRT 18 pack, which had quite a few well thought out features. Build quality wasn’t terrible, but it still left me wanting more. So when Vertx released their EDC Gamut pack, I had to have one. My first impressions after receiving the pack is that the build quality exceeds that of the 5.11 pack by a noticeable margin. It has a semi-flexible frame sheet that helps the pack stand and keeps its shape. Zippers glide smoothly (the 5.11 never had a problem in this regard) and materials are rugged where needed. So what about the design? Continue reading

HK VP9, First Impressions

So I got an HK VP9 recently and got a chance to stare at it a bit, handle it, and get some impressions of it.  This new offering, essentially a striker fired P30, has been hotly anticipated as it is the first striker fired gun out of HK since they started the ball rolling in 1970 with the very first polymer striker fired gun, the VP70. Continue reading

Mini Review: Vertx Phantom Ops Airflow pants

I was lucky to receive the other day a pair of the new Vertx Phantom Ops Airflow pants.  If you don’t know who Vertx is, well then you’ve been asleep behind the wheel of the tactical fashion industry.  Vertx (from their website) “is the tactical brand of Fechheimer, owned by Berkshire Hathaway, Inc and makers of Flying Cross military and law enforcement uniforms.”  I also heard the name Arc’Teryx mentioned at SHOT one year as having input into the design (haven’t got confirmation yet..). Continue reading

AAR: Mike Pannone Patrol Vehicle/Rapid Trauma Management

If you work around vehicles and carry a gun for a living, you should have a plan for how to function around your vehicle with that gun. If you carry a gun for a living, holes may possibly appear where you don’t want them, and you should have a plan for how to address those. Mike Pannone (CTT Solutions) offers a single class – Patrol Vehicle/Rapid Trauma Management –  which addresses these contingencies, and you should plan to get to it if you fit the above description. Continue reading

LaserMax LM1141P Streamlight TLR-1 Test Results

Robar/10-8/MSW Glock with Streamlight TLR-1HL WML, Lasermax Guiderod Laser and MDFA Kydex Carry Gear

In a previous article I revisited my Robar/10-8/MSW Glock. At that time I had installed a LaserMax LM1141P Guide Rod Laser and a Streamlight TLR-1 WML. Since that time I have fired approximately 1500 rounds with them installed. The Laser came from the factory shooting POA/POI and has had absolutely no issues. I find that I sometimes activate the Laser when my trigger finger is in register on the frame of the pistol, before I intend too however. My fault not the Laser’s.

I really like the fact that the LaserMax is internal. This means your holsters will all fit, you won’t block the Laser with your hand or finger when gripping the pistol, and the sight/barrel offset is minimized with the system. Continue reading

First Look: MDFA Kydex Holsters

Here are a couple holsters made by our very own MSW contributor Bob Henckel of MDFA.

Our loyal readers will recognize the name Bob Henckel as one of our regular contributors here at MSW. Bob owns and operates the Maine Defensive Firearms Academy and has recently reincarnated his Kydex holster operations. I was happy to discover this, as I’m always on the lookout for intelligently designed, functional kydex holsters. MDFA makes each holster to order, and the customer can select from over 50 colors and/or patterns available. The holsters are formed from .080″ Kydex, and can be had with 1.5″ or 1.75″ interchangeable belt loops. I chose two different rigs to try out: an IWB and OWB rig. The fit and finish are excellent, and every edge is hand finished. I’ll be carrying both over the next few weeks and will report back with my impressions. MDFA is still working on adding the holsters to the website, but you can order directly through them by hitting them through the contact portion of their site. Continue reading

PHOTO OF THE DAY: MEDICAL KIT ADDITIONS

[I was looking to make this one of the "Made In The USA" posts, but it turned out the two items I reference here are not.  They are nevertheless worthy of consideration as additions to your comprehensive home/tactical medical kits.  My prior MSW post pictures of tactically-oriented medical items I stock at home and carry are here and here].

I recently added two kit items as a result of my never-ending quest to be fully prepared to play first responder on myself and to provide others (who might attend to me or need items for their own use) medical kit items I have determined are easy to use and effective. They are: MEDIHONEY®  (gel, paste, and dressings; New Zealand by way of Canada) by Derma Sciences, Inc., and the four-inch version of the OLAES Modular Bandage (China by way of South Carolina) by Tactical Medical Solutions:

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CompTac Holsters – 2 o’clock for M&P Shield

The CompTac Model 2 o’clock for the M&P Shield with J-hook belt loops

Over the past several months I have been putting the M&P Shield in 9mm through its paces on the range, and while it is not quite as shootable as a Glock 19, it is capable of good accuracy out to 25 yards, and the stock trigger is pretty workable. It’s not as fast or easy to shoot as the G19, and you lose half the capacity. However, in return for that sacrifice in shootability and firepower, you do get a concealable little pistol that you can carry in environments or clothing that may not conceal a bigger pistol. Yes, ideally I recommend dressing around gun carry, but sometimes that isn’t an option. Continue reading