Semi Auto

Lone Wolf Dist Compact Timberwolf Frame Review

While attending the NRA Annual Meetings in April of 2015, I got to meet up with Zack, the marketing manager of Lone Wolf Distributors. I was really interested in their Compact Timberwolf Frame for Glock pistols. Through our conversation, Zack agreed to send me a fully built Timberwolf Compact pistol, which I have since purchased. This is part one of two, where I focus on the frame. Stay tuned for my review of the upper assembly, as well as a summary of the pistol as a whole.  20151024_180117-1

Lone Wolf Distributors has been manufacturing accessories and replacement parts for Glock handguns for many years. From slides, barrels, triggers, and more, you could almost build a custom Glock by just using Lone Wolf’s parts. The only thing missing was the frame, until somewhat recently. Lone Wolf saw the modifications that people generally made to their standard Glock frames, and decided to offer a lot of these modifications right out of the box, with their Timberwolf frame.

Common modifications made by end users to Generation 3 Glock pistols include backstrap reduction, frame texturing, adding extended magazine releases, and even removing material in key places to allow a higher grip on the handgun. Well, Lone Wolf Distributors took all of these modifications into consideration, when designing their Timberwolf frame. I will take a look at each of these aspects one-by-one.

Grip

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One of the biggest benefits to this replacement frame would have to be the grip. The Timberwolf offers two choices of backstrap to the shooter. The first is the slim grip. It is an incredibly short (front-to-back) grip that more closely matches the grip angle of the classic 1911. The second is a swelled backstrap. It is a little smaller in the hand than the standard Glock swell, which will come as a welcomed feature to many Glock owners. This setup happens to be my favorite of the two. As good as it feels, the smaller grip leaves the meat of my palm really close to the magwell, and it can actually get pinched in between the magazine base plate and the frame, upon reloading. Do this a couple of times, and it starts to get on your nerves. Luckily, the swelled grip fit me just as well, if not better, and Lone Wolf engineered the swap very well. To make the change, all you have to do is, with an empty gun, insert a flat tool into a slot that can be accessed through the magwell, and gently pry downward.

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In my trials of the differing grips, I noticed an odd, but very well thought out (and well hidden) feature. Under the backstrap is actually a round recess that will hold one CR2032 battery, which is the somewhat industry standard for micro red dots. Alternatively, it can hold two CR2016s. This is a great feature if you’re building a race gun, or just want to carry a gun with a dot sight, and I am honestly a little shocked LWD doesn’t even list this in their feature literature.

The next part of the grip is the texture. Many people feel that the Gen 3 Glock grip is just too slick. I, for one, am in that boat. What the Timberwolf offers is a very aggressive square pattern, without being so harsh as to tear up your hands, with one exception. The edges of the frontstrap have slightly sharper corners than the rest. I suppose that is just a geometry issue of the curve meeting the corners of the texture, but it became very uncomfortable for the end of my pinky. That being said, it could easily be taken care of with a quick pass of some fine sandpaper, just to knock the edge off. Overall, the grip texture is very good at keeping the gun in your hands while firing. Speaking of the frontstrap, one feature many owners elect to remove on factory Glocks is the finger grooves. The factory finger grooves on a standard Glock 19 (Gen 4) actually happen to fit me perfectly, but I completely understand that there are so many different shapes and sizes of people. One good example for me was my Smith and Wesson Model 66. When I would attempt to get a high grip, the finger grooves would jam right into my knuckle, causing much discomfort, and forcing me to get a less that optimal hold on the gun. That is why it’s quite interesting that Lone Wolf decided to leave the finger grooves on their Timberwolf frame. But, to their credit, they reduced them down quite a bit, so if they don’t fit you well, it may not be the largest discomfort, when compared to a factory frame. I would still like to have seen them remove the grooves, though.

Moving up the grip, we have the undercut trigger guard. This is another common modification that allows you to get a much higher purchase on the pistol. To help with that, even further, they also designed the rear grip higher, and added a beaver tail, to remove the risk of slide bite. I have never personally had the web of my hand bitten by a Glock slide, but I have fairly small hands, and can see where it would be a problem to larger-handed shooters.

One last minor change I would like to see in the grip would be a slimmed down portion where the trigger finger rests on the frame, similar to that of the Walther P99. I feel like it would allow shooters with shorter fingers to more properly grip the handgun, and reach the trigger.

Magazine Release

For the longest time, people have been adding extended mag releases to guns, to make them easier to actuate. Lone Wolf, as well many other aftermarket parts manufacturers, offers extended releases. Lone Wolf even offers one that is wider than the factory, but it requires custom machining to make it work. When designing their frame, they decided to incorporate it right in, that way you don’t have to have it modified later. The wider release offers people with shorter fingers, like me, an easier to reach release without shifting the grip, as well as an easier to find release, which is good for everyone. As with the front strap, the corner of the magazine release can be a little sharp and annoying, if you’re performing repeated actuations, but, like I said previously, it’s not something a little swipe of sandpaper wouldn’t take care of.

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Another curious note on the mag release is that Lone Wolf didn’t make it reversible, like the Gen 4 Glock. That would be a nice feature, but seeing as how it was designed before the Gen 4 was released, I can understand the oversight.

Rail

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The final feature of the Timberwolf frame is the rail. Rather than using Glock’s proprietary rail, Lone Wolf decided to go with a Mil-Standard, three-slot, Picatinny rail. This allows users to select from a wider array of rail-mounted accessories, as well as move the placement forward or rearward, as they see fit. I did not attach anything to the rail, though.

 

Overall

The Timberwolf frame is very a very well thought out replacement for anyone that owns a Generation 3 or older Glock handgun in 9 Luger, 40 S&W, 357 Sig, and even 45 GAP. It is available in either the full-size (17, 22, 31, 37) or the compact (19, 23, 32, 38) frame sizes. The improvements offered by a good grip modification company could run well into the $4-500+ dollar range, whereas Lone Wolf offers many of these features at a fraction of the cost. If replacing a Gen 3 frame for a gun you already own, you could buy just the bare frame and use most of your existing Glock parts to fill the replacement. That is, with the exception of the mag release, since the Timberwolf frame comes with their proprietary release pre-installed. The bare frame will cost you just shy of $200, which is a steal, compared to grip work. If you do build your own frame, you should be aware that you will need to buy either a LWD Gen4/Timberwolf Trigger housing, or LWD Ultimate Trigger Stop Gen4, to replace your Gen 3 housing, as the grip is slimmer in the front-to-back dimension.

If you’re planning to build a whole new gun, or just want multiple lowers, Lone Wolf offers a pre-assembled lower frame for $330, which is only about $30 more than buying every individual part and installing them yourself. To save the hassle and time of potentially forgetting or losing a part, I would recommend just buying the built frame. But, if you want to add your choice of custom trigger, you could easily purchase the parts separately from the frame. Lone wolf makes this easy by offering an interactive schematic.

Another benefit of buying the assembled frame is that Lone Wolf adds a few enhanced parts. These enhancements include: LWD 3.5# connector, LWD 6# trigger spring, LWD Extended slide stop, and LWD Extended slide lock. The 3.5# connector and 6# trigger spring makes for a very smooth, and pretty light, trigger pull. This is a great upgrade over the factory Glock parts that I am glad Lone Wolf includes in the assembled frame. It provides a good trigger feel, without being obscenely light, so I feel it would still be suitable for carry. On my example, they even installed the smooth trigger that usually only comes with the full-size Glock handguns. I much prefer the smooth trigger, as the serrated trigger begins to wear at my trigger finger, during firing sessions. I’m not sure if this is the standard feature for the assembled frame, but based on my invoice, it seems to be. The Extended slide stop is useful if you are the kind of shooter that uses it to release the slide. It provides a much larger purchase area than the standard, so it’s easier to manipulate, but it’s not so large that it gets inadvertently hit. As far as the Extended slide lock (the two tabs in front of the trigger guard that you pull downward to disassemble the gun), I really don’t get the purpose of it. The tabs are a little longer than standard, but I’ve never had a problem using the standard Glock part. It’s an upgrade that I could take it or leave it, and be satisfied either way. It did, though, scratch the inside of my holster. That’s not too much of an issue with a plastic holster, but with leather, I’d be afraid of it causing premature wear on the holster.

In summary, the Lone Wolf Distributers Compact Timberwolf Frame is a great upgrade to your Gen 3 or older Glock pistol, or for building your own custom pistol. It is a great value compared to the expense and wait for frame modification work. Some of the features are addressed on the newer Gen 4 Glocks, but with the Timberwolf, the grip is still slimmer (front-to-back) than the OEM. You also wouldn't get the undercut triggerguard, raised and lengthened beavertail, and reduced finger grooves.

At the time of writing, the assembled frame is available for only $234.95 (prices subject to change), and it even comes with Lone Wolf's excellent Ultimate Adjustable Trigger. This is a promotional price for the UAT, and I do not know the timeline for when it will go back to normal, so if you'd like an assembled Timberwolf frame, I would jump on it as soon as possible. The UAT is normally a $50 upgrade, so you are basically paying for the frame and the assembly labor cost, and getting all of the internals for free!

Firearms Insider Reviews - 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame: Replacement frame for generation 3 and older Glock handguns

Target Market: Concealed carriers and competitive shooters

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FNBs (Features & Benefits of this product):

  • Improved ergonomics over Glock OEM frame
  • Full-spec 1913 accessory rail
  • Higher grip angle
  • Extended beaver tail
  • Rounded trigger guard
  • Round/extended mag release
  • Improved Checkering
  • Quick change grip panels (2 total)
  • Spare CR2016 battery storage in grip panel
  • Improved trigger over Glock OEM (standard in assembled frame)
  • Extended slide lock lever (standard in assembled frame)

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?: Currently, the Timberwolf frame is only available in black.

What others are saying?:

“The Timberwolf pistol is of particular interest to the small-handed shooter, or to the user who says “I love everything about the Glock but the grip angle,” or the handgunner who just likes to be able to get lots of finger on the trigger and lots of flesh and bone around the “handle.” It’s definitely worth a look.” - Massad Ayoob, Daily Caller

“But the Not-A-GLOCK feels terrific in the hand. No really. Like many, but not all shooters, I find it difficult to come to a natural point of aim with a standard GLOCK. What’s more, the grip angle puts my hand and wrist out of the line that gives me stability. The Compact Timberwolf’s grip is, for me, vastly improved. I can get a high hold on the gun and put all of my fingers on the handle. It boasts a fairly small diameter grip, with good holding surface. I can get a natural point-of-aim and a solid one-hand grip, right or left.” - Jon Wayne Taylor, The Truth About Guns

Price Point:

  • Bare = $199.95
  • Built = $329.95
  • Built with UAT = 234.95 (Limited time offer)

I need it now! Availability: You can get the Timberwolf Compact Frame directly from Lone Wolf, and a few online retailers, but once you spend a few minutes on the LWD website, you’ll most definitely want to pick up some of their other great products, like their Glock Magazine Disassembly tool.

Our Rating:

Pros:

  • Greatly improves ergonomics
  • Interchangeable grip panels
  • Offers many common custom options
  • Improved grip texture to provide better traction
  • Available as a bare frame or built to LWD’s preferred specs
  • Built frame has improved trigger
  • The ability to build any caliber offered by Glock on this frame size (19, 23, 32, & 38)
  • You can even build it as a “Long-Slide Compact” by using a factory full-size upper (such as a G17), or Lone Wolf upper, and purchasing Lone Wolf’s Slide Adapter, which fills the gap between the front of the 17 slide and the 19’s dust cover.

Cons:

  • Still has finger grooves (though they are greatly reduced)
  • Mag release is not reversible to left-hand operation

Score: 9.090

 

 

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Firing Line Review

 

 

Volquartsen Custom Scorpion .22 LR Pistol Review

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Review Picture 4

 

The .22 rimfire pistol market is one of variety. From inexpensive plinkers to tricked out, high performance raceguns, I don’t know of a market that offers the discerning consumer more choices in terms of fit, finish & quality. In contrast to a few years ago, .22 rimfire ammunition has started to make a comeback in areas where it was scarce for quite some time, and that has made taking these rimfire pistols back out to the range much more of a possibility. Gone are the days of 99 cent Winchester White boxes of 50 rounds like I remember, but .22 LR still offers good performance and practice options at a far reduced price compared to full size centerfire ammunition. As mentioned before, there are many different tiers of .22 LR pistols. The Volquartsen Custom Scorpion is definitely securely placed in the top-tier of .22 LR handguns; it is a lightweight .22 LR Pistol designed for high performance and is equally at home in the competition arena, or out in the field.

The Volquartsen Custom Scorpion can mount many optics such as this Burris Fastfire

Back in March I did an interview with Scott Volquartsen of Volquartsen Custom about their business. I came away impressed with their commitment to quality as well as to their employees & customers. Scott stated that Volquartsen had worked to make the finest rimfire handguns and rifles for competition and other uses that money could buy. We spoke about potentially having me test a handgun, and after NRA Show 2015, we spoke about what my desires would be if I was contacting Volquartsen to purchase a custom .22 LR handgun. I told Scott that if I were to call and order one, I would want a handgun that could fill a couple roles: competition & handgun hunting. I am a fan of hunting with handguns, and many .22 pistols simply aren’t precise enough for small game hunting. I have also thought about getting involved in rimfire competition, and would want a handgun that could fill dual roles. Scott suggested their Scorpion line, with a 4.5” barrel, the 1911 style VC Target frame, and Fiber optic front sight with the Volquartsen Target rear sight. The handgun would be fitted with all Volquartsen internals and would have an accessory rail on the top if I desired to mount any optics.

The Competition Bolt is coated in a variety of finishes for superior performance.

The Scorpion is a combination of the Lightweight VC Target Frame and the LLV Upper. It comes standard with the Volquartsen Competition Bolt. The Volquartsen Competition Bolt is CNC Machined and ground for superior tolerances, fit and finish. It features the SureStrike Firing Pin and the Exact Edge Extractor to ensure reliable feeding & function. The bolt is also offered with four different coatings, Diamond Like Carbon, Chromium Nitride, Titanium Nitride and Titanium Carbo-Nitride. The example I have here has the Diamond Like Carbon Coating. I can attest to the reliable functioning of the bolt and pistol, as I put a little over 3,000 rounds of various brands of .22 rimfire cartridges through the pistol in about a months time with not a single malfunction. This was with extremely minimal lubrication and almost no cleaning aside from wiping the bolt with a soft cloth.

The VC Target Frame and LLV Upper combine to make the Volquartsen Scorpion

The VC Target Frame is manufactured by Volquartsen, and is offered with a MKIII style grip angle or a 1911 style grip angle. The example I have is the 1911 style frame. It is CNC-machined from aluminum alloy and with a 6oz base weight, is very light and handy. You can get the frame in a variety of finishes & colors, with the Black, red, blue and OD green frames being Type III hard anodized and the Silver frames being NiB coated. The VC frame is fitted with all Volquartsen internals, including the Accurizing Kit with Extended bolt release, CNC Machined Target Trigger, Wire EDM Cut Target Hammer and target sear. It also sports a CNC machined disconnector, extended safety and in the MKIII models, a spring-loaded magazine ejector for positive ejection of spent magazines. Volquartsen has eliminated the magazine disconnect from this frame as well. Their trigger is outstanding, with minimal take-up and an adjustable overtravel stop. The manual lists the trigger pull weight at 2.25 lbs and I found this to be true, with the average over 10 trigger pulls reading between 2.25 and 2.3 on my Lyman trigger pull gauge. I cannot say enough good things about the trigger on this pistol.

The Volquartsen Target Rear with Fiber Optic Front presents a fantastic sight picture

The LLV Barreled receiver/upper is hard anodized & CNC machined. The receiver and barrel shroud are precision machined as one piece from aluminum alloy. An integral picatinny rail is machined into the top of the receiver for easy mounting of any of the optical sights available on the market today. It is fitted with a precision stainless steel barrel that is machine-honed and lapped and is available in either 4.5” or 6” lengths. The standard configuration LLV comes with 1/2 x 28 muzzle threads with either a thread protector, or with their LLV compensator.

The LLV Compensator mates perfectly with the LLV upper and tames the mild .22 LR recoil to almost nothing.

  My example has the LLV Compensator which functions very well and tames the already mild recoil of the .22 Rimfire down to almost nothing. The pistol runs well with a suppressor too, as you can see in the video. You can also choose any number of sight options, such as Hi-Viz front and Tritium rear, Hi Viz Front and Target rear, or Volquartsen Target sights. You can also opt to not have sights installed and simply use electronic optics.

Grip options for the VC Target Frame include Volthane Target Grips or Laminated Wood Target grips for the MKIII style grip angle, and Aluminum Grips or the Hogue Monogrip for the 1911 Style Grip angle. My example sports the Hogue Monogrips. They were very comfortable and made the gun easy to handle, especially after many hundreds of rounds downrange in a single session. This whole package comes in at under 2 lbs.

Multiple brands & types of ammo were used in the evalutation

At the range, I found the Scorpion to be incredibly accurate and fast. From close-up shooting on multiple steel targets as fast as possible, to 45, 55 and even 60 yard shots on an 8” steel plate, the Volquartsen Scorpion delivered. I fired many different brands & loads through the Scorpion over the test period, and the pistol functioned flawlessly with every single one. I used CCI Mini-Mag .22 LR hollowpoint 36 grain, Winchester Super X .22 LR round nose 40 grain & Aguila .22 Pistol Match 40 grain LRN. Also mixed in there were some Winchester 40 grain Dynapoints during the suppressed fire. At about 25 yards, the CCI Mini Mags were the most accurate for me, with groups of 0.58” being common.

It seems my particular sample really likes the lighter weight 36 grain bullet of the Mini-Mag. The rest of the ammunition didn’t shoot as tight groups for me, but all were well under an inch from a rest at between 25-30 yards. I had the most fun doing rapid fire steel drills on multiple 8” steel plates from 15 yards. It is REALLY fun to run this pistol fast.

Groups like this one (minus those two flyers from a previous group; the sticky fell off) were commonplace with the Volquartsen Scorpion at 25 yards

The Volquartsen Custom Scorpion is really an outstanding .22 pistol. The combination of high quality features really make for a handgun that is a cut above the rest in the rimfire pistol world. When I spoke with the folks at Volquartsen, I said that I would want a pistol that would be equally at home out in the field hunting small game as it would be in the competition arena. This pistol really delivers. It is eminently customizable to fit your needs, and  you can tell the people at Volquartsen really care about the desires of the customer. Every question/request I had was answered in a timely manner and with a high degree of detail and explanation. With a price range between $1,175 and $1,236 depending upon chosen options, it is definitely in the higher range of .22 pistols, but you are getting a high quality, high performance handgun that will definitely last you a lifetime.

Firearms Insider Reviews – 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame: Super High Quality .22 LR Pistol intended for competition or target shooting use.

Target Market: Shooters who need a .22 LR pistol for competition or small game hunting.

FNBs (Features & Benefits of this product):

  • High quality internals
  • Light weight
  • Superb Trigger & Sights
  • Optics Mounting Options
  • Fantastic Customer Service
  • Support a family-run firearms business

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?

  • Black, Red, Blue & OD Green Type III Hard Anodized
  • Silver is Nickel Boron (NiB)
  • Target Grips
  • Aluminum Grips
  • Various Options for Compensators
  • 1911 style or MK III Style Grip Frame

Price point:

MSRP = Between $1,175 and $1,236 depending upon chosen options. This is a custom pistol.

I need it now! Availability: You can purchase the Volquartsen Custom Scorpion directly from Volquartsen Custom. 

Pros:

  • Custom built to the user specifications
  • Uses high quality components for the internals
  • Trigger is AMAZING.
  • Coated Competition Bolt almost eliminates the need for lubrication.
  • Reliability over 3,000 rounds with almost no cleaning whatsoever is amazing in a .22 rimfire pistol.
  • Accuracy is top-notch even at long distance.
  • Worked fantastic with a .22 LR suppressor. Very very quiet and accurate. Also, the sights can be used with the suppressor attached.

Cons:

  • It is definitely in the upper end price range for .22 LR pistols. However, this isn’t really a “con” as it IS a high quality custom .22 LR pistol intended for the highest levels of rimfire competition.

Our Rating: 9.5 AMAZING!95

 

 

Visit Volquartsen Custom for more information and to place an order!

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Magpul AK Zhukov Handguard

Magpul Zhukov Handguard

Another key part of the AK rifle that begs for improvement is the handguard. Formerly just a wood shell to protect the hand of a soldier from the heat generated by the barrel and gasblock/gastube, the modern AK has been outfitted with aluminum and polymer forearms that serve the same purpose but add the modularity of mounted accessories. Aluminum still contracts heat though as well as adding weight, leaving polymer a popular option for upgrading a stock rifle.

Magpul Zhukov Handguard

Just like the Zhukov-S stock, the Zhukov handguard sets the bar for quality, durability and overall badasssery in its category. The extended length it adds to the support hand is a much needed, and wasn't available unless you paid a very costly and custom aluminum rail. It's pretty well known that a longer support hand grip improves freehanded rifle accuracy and the ability to transition between targets, and the extended length of the Zhukov really transforms the AK into a completely different rifle with improved functionality. Now the forearm can be braced against or ontop of a barrier or shooter's rest which was lacking support before, and its M-LOK slots let you customize where accessories are mounted without additional weight and clutter of unused rail space. Also just like the other Magpul AK products, the Zhukov handguard is available be in all the colors of the tactical rainbow to match your other gear.

Magpul Zhukov Handguard

Installing the Zhukov is more involved than the standard MOE AK handguard because of the provided clamps that support the structure entirely. MAKE SURE your barrel is wide enough FIRST as it would be a huge bummer to make this permanent modification and your barrel profile was too narrow for the Zhukov's clamps (between 16.75-18.25 millimeters) and your barrel should be at least 13" long for obvious reasons. If you own an AKM or other AK variant that has a factory handguard retaining cap / forward sling mount, you're going to have to permanently remove it prior to beginning the installation. This calls for some commitment on the users part, as you're hosed for most handguards after cutting the cap off. Also, there may be some minor additional fitting required due to the wide range of tolerances of typical AK's. Yugo users need not apply - the Zhukov is not compatible.

Magpul Zhukov Handguard

After removing the factory or existing hanguard and the gastube, its a smart idea to wrap some duct tape around the barrel underneath and surrounding the handguard retaining cap (assuming you have one that needs to be removed) The tape will help keep that retaining cap from spinning or sliding up and down the barrel, and also help add a small protective layer if you are using a Dremel or other cutting wheel. If you aren't comfortable with the power tool, take it to a gunsmith and they should be able to cut it off easily without much expense to you. If you are removing it yourself, I would highly recommend taking it slow, and not trying to cut completely through the metal of the cap. Stop just shy of a thirty second of an inch and use a flathead screwdriver in the cut channel to pry/twist the halves apart. This will keep you from cutting too deep and marring your barrel. Once its gone, unplug the Dremel and put it away, and enjoy a a cold beverage because that was the worst part.

Magpul Zhukov Handguard

Now for the easy steps, just remove the heatshield from the polymer outershell, align it below the barrel and insert each of the pair of screws up through the metal and bottom clamp half (the unthreaded half) and loosely tighten into the top half. Next you slide the polymer part back onto the heatshield in the correct orientation, while keeping the clamps loosely tightened.  This will help you align the complete hanguard to its most rearward position where the rear screw holes align, and ensuring theres a even gap between the upper lips of the handguard and the gasblock. Alternate tightening each screw to ensure a consistent and level tightening force on each clamp, and then you're set! Just twist off the old gasblock cover and twist on the new polymer part, reinstall and check for function. Поздравляю товарищ (Congrats comrade!)



If you're wondering how the heck you are supposed to add your flashlight, laser, bipod, sling mount, foregrip, bottle opener, and other completely necessary doodads, welcome to the M-LOK side of the fence. We have cake, and even let MOE rail users hang out. So if you've invested in MOE rail sections for previous AR-15 handguards, they are still compatible. You are more likely to find M-LOK rail sections and mounting accessories now on store shelves in the same cardboard and plastic bag packaging that you're used to seeing. Unlike keymod, M-LOK is arguably more secure in mounting, and less expensive and soon to be more prevalent in my opinion.

Magpul Zhukov Handguard

In case you are partial to modifying your rifle or still want to utilize your AKM's sling loop, or keep that under-mounted cleaning rod, the MOE AK hanguard is for you. It still has M-LOK slots, comes in colors and has an integral heatshield, but is more of a direct replacement for the existing hanguard. I was personally bummed their wasn't any accommodation for the cleaning rod built into the design of the bottom clamps, but its not a tragic loss. Besides, AK's don't need to be cleaned!

Firearms Insider Reviews – 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame: The Magpul Zhukov Handguard casts aside traditional AK forearm shortcomings and offers an extended option for modern shooting techniques.

Target Market:  AK variant owners with standard length barrels

FNBs (Features & Benefits of this product):

  • Extended length provides large gripping surface / more real estate for mounting accessories
  • Mounts to most AK-47/AKM/AK-74 rifles with barrels between 16.75 - 18.25mm diameter (minimum 13" length)
  • Full length hard anodized aluminum chassis provides for flex-free mounting and heat shielding
  • M-LOK slots at the three, six, and nine o'clock position
  • Includes replacement polymer top cover
  • Compatible with UltiMAK Optics Mount top cover

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?: Black, Stealth Gray, FDE, Ranger Green, and Plum

What others are saying?: "I love this hand guard. It was very easy to install. The heat shield does a great job of keeping your hands from getting too warm. It works well with all the M-Lok accessories. It fitted perfect with my Ultimak gas tube as well. I couldn't be happier with the purchase." Brownells User Review

"You better really want the Magpul ZHUKOV because you are going to be stuck with it. I don't see this as a problem with its features, however you should be aware that the gas block sling mount loop and factory handguard retainer cover must be ground off your AK. Yep, this means you are not going backward from an upgrade perspective at any point in the future. The Magpul ZHUKOV hand guard covers the sling mount point, so even if you do a fairly ugly job, no one will see it. This also means that the ZHUKOV is not a "drop in upgrade", but something easy if you know how to run a hacksaw and file or Dremel well. The main advantage of this barrel clamped configuration is that the handguard is never shifting or moving. One of the reasons some will opt for the ZHUKOV hand guard over the MOE version is that this version is designed to be "more" compatible with various milled receivers since the hand guard is not reliant on a slot in the receiver and handguard retain for stability and is instead just clamped to the barrel. I love what Magpul has done to overhaul the AK47/AK74 rifles from top to bottom to keep the AK current even after all these years." Major Pandemic Review

Price point:

I need it now! Availability: Brownells or local gun shops

Our Rating:

Pros:

  • Fairly easy to install (handguard retainer needs to be removed)
  • Longer forearm= more room for accessory rails, better forward positioning of lights
  • Compatible with railed gastubes, ie: UltiMAK
  • Design ties well with Zhukov or MOE stock and MOE AK grip

Cons:

  • No allowance for cleaning rod
  • No interface with receiver for level mounting (you have to eyeball it when tightening)

Score: 8.0 Great

Featured FFL:

For FFL services I choose Promised Land Firearms in Toulon, IL.

Ryan's Links:

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WGM-15 Carbine

 

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WGM-15 Carbine

The proliferation of the AR-15 rifle in every color, configuration and price point has left us with an over-saturated market. The most basic, bone stock, plain jane black rifles can be had for around 5 Hamiltons... heck, I can pick them up at Walmart all day long.  Unfortunately, they are for the most part all carbon copies of each other. Forged receivers, A2 birdcage flash hiders, and whatever furniture could be had at wholesale and slapped together on the factory line. Luckily for the distinguished (or professional) shooter, there are passionate rifle builders out there who continue designing and hand assembling finer AR-15 rifles that would make Eugene Stoner proud.

WGM-15 Carbine

I recently received a carbine from WGM Tactical out of California to put to the test. WGM is a Type 07, Class 02 SOT FFL and manufacturer of AR15 style rifles, sound suppressors, AOWs, custom precision long range rifles, and gunsmithing service. I applaud them for enduring behind enemy lines and giving the gun control crowd nightmares by producing awesome 100% made in America black rifles.

WGM-15 Carbine

The literature from WGM Tactical paints a pretty accurate picture of their vision and goals: "In todays market, a number of manufacturers use the term ‘mil-spec’, short for military specification. Why? Because everyone is under the impression, if the military uses it, it’s good enough for me. Fact is, ‘mil-spec’ simply means it is the bare minimum that the military will accept for a certain product. Here at WGM Tactical, we believe in going above and beyond, which is why our products are above 'mil -spec’. We believe in giving our customers a superior product. Each and every component is manufactured in the USA, and hand assembled and inspected by us. Which is why WGM Tactical warranties every rifle for any defects in materials or workmanship at no charge to the purchaser for the life of the product."  

WGM-15 Carbine

The carbine comes as a sweet package in a Plano tactical case. Inside I found the WGM-15 carbine, OTIS cleaning kit, a QD sling, 2 Hexmag magazines, LULA Mag-loader, & eye and ear pro. Everything but the kitchen sink and ammo to shoot it with. The case itself has been plucked 'n pulled to fit each accessory which made running out to the range a breeze. No excuses to not go out and get some!

WGM-15 Carbine

The first thing I noticed when I picked up the carbine was it's stout weight. The slab-sided billet receivers (which fit very snug together thanks to a tension screw), HBAR barrel, billet receivers and freefloat handguard make the balance seem heavy at first, but weighed in at only 7.4 lb total. The WGM-15 is 'huskier' than most AR-15s but the provided sling, hogue overmolded grip, stock and rubber keymod port covers keep the contact points between the shooter and the rifle pleasant. The weight also comes into play in the recoil of the rifle itself, or lack thereof.  The iron sights that come with the rifle are flip up style, which compliment the installation of any optic of your choice. The horseshoe front sight hood makes alignment with the rear aperture quick and instinctual. Utilizing only the flip-up iron sights, I was able to hit 8" steel plates easily with the lead splattered groupings staying close to the center.

WGM-15 Carbine

The Allen Engineering muzzle brake did a phenomenal job at improving stability and cutting muzzle rise down almost completely. Slow fire of singles, as well as doubles and triples were very controllable and easy to keep the sights glued on target. The sharper readers may recognize it as the Ops-Inc 12th model, MK12 SPR, as seen from the 'Lone Survivor' movie. Unfortunately the .30 cal can I have is not compatible with the Allen, but the muzzle brake's mount half can be removed to expose the barrel's 1/2 x 18 threads. Having an AE suppressor would be ideal as you just unscrew the bushing and an Allen suppressor could be threaded on without tools or removing the muzzle brake. Makes me wish the NFA fairy would visit more often!

WGM-15 Carbine

Being a California specific model, this specific WGM-15 came with the notorious bane of all gun owner's existences known as the "bullet button." Okay it's not really that bad, but makes you glad your current state of residence hasn't taken up a similar limitation (yet). To perfectly compliment the bullet button, the Hexmags WGM sent over also had 10 round limiters in them. Not only do reloads take twice as long, but the mags empty 3 times as fast. Thankfully I had some standard capacity Pmags to help boost that round count so I didn't get home too late.

WGM-15 Carbine

Speaking of round count, this WGM-15 has been a naughty girl. Before my date with her, she's had 9,500 rounds fired without a single cleaning or drop of lube (other than the first lubrication at assembly). I've never been with a rifle with this much... experience. The previous shooting sessions used ammunition ranging from wolf, military surplus, match grade and custom loads. Rapid fire, slow fire, and suppressed. WGM told me that they only have one report of a misfeed (attributed that to his magazines) and one report of a stuck case at about 6,000 rounds that has not replicated itself yet.  Their goal is to not clean or lube the rifle until it simply will no longer function. Now that's something I can get behind!

WGM-15 Carbine

The trigger on this WGM-15 was a vast improvement from most AR's single stage triggers. The 4lb setting breaks cleanly and the reset is shorter than what I'm used to, which made for quick follow up shots. I tested the rifle using exclusively American Eagle 55gr FMJ in my testing, which is all I had an abundance of. I fired a total of 300 rounds over the course of two days. Like I previously mentioned, that bullet button and CAstrated magazines slow things down a bit, but I didn't experience any malfunctions while setting that round count up to 9,800. The barrel, handguard, and rifle overall got very warm, partly due to the beaming sun. Smart men bring gloves to range day.

WGM-15 Carbine

My overall final impressions of this carbine are thats it's a battle-worthy improvement over the 'mil-spec' mass produced AR-15 pattern rifles out there. The tolerances are all superb, and the components built and chosen add up to a rugged, improved evolution of America's favorite black rifle. If you are looking for a true beast in .223/5.56 thats not all marketing hype and lego parts, take a closer look at what WGM Tactical is building behind enemy occupied territory.

Firearms Insider Reviews – 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame: WGM Tactical rifles are built with pride, quality, and the serious shooter in mind. They offer a great deal of quality and precision, all together in one convenient and economical package.

Target Market:  Serious shooters, Law Enforcement

FNBs (Features & Benefits of this product):

  • 7075 Billet Aerospace Aluminum Receiver
  • Slab side upper reciever, forward assist and brass deflector eliminated for weight reduction
  • Oversize trigger guard
  • Mil-spec, Type 2 hard anodized, low gloss finish
  • Anti-rotational trigger and hammer pins
  • Ambidextrous safety lever
  • Tension Screw (allows for a tighter fit between receivers)
  • Hogue pistol grip& Hogue 6 position overmolded buttstock
  • Commercial spec buffer tube
  • One piece drop in trigger assembly (adjusted to 4 pounds, 4.5 pounds on law enforcement models, 3.5 on our 3 gun models)
  • Fluted 16" match grade barrel (also available 14.5" pinned and welded to 16")
  • Barrels are 4150 Chromoly, melonite coated for wear and corrosion resistance, HBAR profile, mid-length gas system. (Spiral fluting also available at additional cost)
  • Chambered in .223 Wylde, allows for use of .223 or 5.56NATO cartridges while retaining the utmost accuracy. (Also available in .300 Blackout, ..458 SOCOM and .50 Beowulf)
  • Note - .458 and .50 barrels are NOT fluted.
  • M4 style feedramps.
  • Fully adjustable gas block, allows user to custom tailor to different ammunition loads, with or without sound suppressor, etc.
  • Free float keymod handguard, (Also available as MLok)
  • Back-up flip up iron sights
  • Armageddon Tactical Ambi charging handle (Design redirects blowback gases away from shooters face, particularly beneficial when firing suppressed)
  • Allen Engineering muzzle brake, improves stability and lowers recoil. WGM-15 and FNA-15 rifles are designed to work with the Allen Engineering AEM-5 sound suppressor. (Formerly Ops-Inc 12th model, MK12 SPR, 'Lone Survivor' movie)
  • Nickel Boron coated bolt, allows for minimal cleaning and lubrication
  • Complete package comes in weatherproof Plano tactical case, OTIS cleaning kit, eye and ear protection,GunVault locks, quick detach sling, 2 HEXMAG magazines, LULA Mag-loader

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?:  NP3 or custom colors available at additional cost.

What others are saying?: "I have completed 2 separate new firearms purchases as well as several times of using Bill for some gunsmith work.  When it comes to wanting information or training, Bill or his wife will gladly take the time to explain things to you in way you will understand them.  Both purchases went smoothly.  They are a little hard to get a hold of if it is the day before or the day after a gunshow in the area, but that is understandable.  I would much rather do business with a small business like this, dealing directly with the owners, then through a large store where they are impersonal." Yelp User Review

Price point:

  • MSRP: $2103

I need it now! Availability: Call WGM Tactical at 530-636-AR15

Our Rating:

Pros:

  • Billet receivers with no Forward Assist
  • Tension screw takes up tolerances between receivers and is hidden when pistol grip installed
  • Commercial buffer tube (better tolerances than milspec)
  • Best warranty around: If it breaks, WGM replaces the entire thing!

Cons:

  • No brass deflector built into receiver (lefties shoot with your mouth closed)

Score: 8.5 Great

 

 

Featured FFL:

For FFL services I choose Promised Land Firearms in Toulon, IL.

Ryan's Links:

Gun & Gear Review Podcast

Hunter of Design

Firing Line Review

 

 

Xtreme Hardcore Gear Force Recon Tactical Rings

Xtreme Hardcore Gear Force Recon Tactical Scope Rings

When you are dumping money into a precision rifle, whether it be an AR-15, AR-10, or bolt action platform, theres a saying that goes "spend two times the amount of the gun on the optic." Easier said than done if you do in fact mind sleeping on the couch for a week. No matter what you spend on the rifle itself or the glass, they still have to interface together. The scope rings are just as important, as they determine how true the relationship will be between where you are aiming, the adjustment of your dope turrets, and where that bullet will go.

Xtreme Hardcore Gear Force Recon Tactical Scope Rings

High quality rings will make sure your scope is and remains mounted securely and consistently shot after shot. Generally speaking, the higher the price tag, the better the machining of the pair of rings to be within tight tolerances and will hold your scope true to the rifle's bore. Of course, if you are canting your rifle or resting on uneven ground, everything goes out the window. Thats where a bubble level comes into play. There are a handful of scope level products on the market, either clamping onto the scope tube or mounting via picatinny rail somewhere on the rings. I've seen plenty of rifles with them, and I have a couple on my own tack drivers. What I haven't seen is a premium quality scope ring with an integral bubble level... until I found the Xtreme Hardcore Gear Force Recon Tactical Rings.

Xtreme Hardcore Gear Force Recon Tactical Scope Rings

Besides being a mouthful, the Xtreme Hardcore Gear Force Recon Tactical Rings are one of the only sets of scope rings I've seen to both be of high quality, and integrate the bubble level. At around $180 they are certainly a premium, but perfect for a high dollar rifle that's purposefully built for small groups at long ranges. A scope won't track correctly along the X and Y axis (windage and elevation) if your scope and bore aren't perpendicular with the ground, thats a simple as I can put it. Firing a bullet from an non-level position will skew that bullets course exponentially the longer the distance, and your scope's tracking adjustments will be diagonally "hinky" as well.

Xtreme Hardcore Gear Force Recon Tactical Scope Rings

In addition to the integral bubble level, these rings offer a level of precision only rivaled by $200+ ring sets. The Xtreme Hardcore rings are designed and machined to not allow the scope to move under any recoil scenario. The rings interface with the rail with a robust .875" mounting platform while the two cross slot bolts provide awesome clamping power without any protruding bolt heads. The cherry on top is the pair of steel guide rails that press into the ring base. The ring base clamp rides on these rails to keep the clamp perfectly aligned as the two cross slot bolts are drawn tight against the pic mount.  Another detail I appreciate is the rings and caps have a .030" radius on both sides of the scope bore to eliminate any marring or sharp contact points on your scope. Together with the provided 6 torx bolts for an evenly distributed force onto the top of the scope, these features add up to the best scope rings you can buy for precision work.

Firearms Insider Reviews – 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame: The Force Recon Tactical Rings feature a built in level housed into the rear scope ring, assuring a perfect parallel which is essential for long range shooting.

Target Market:  Long range rifle shooters

FNBs (Features & Benefits of this product):

  • Ring Bore Diameter 30mm with tolerances +/-.001"
  • USA Mills Billet 7075 T-6 Aircraft Aluminum
  • Black Anodize Mill Spec 8625 Type 3 Hardcoat
  • Rings are matched within .002"
  • 6 Cap Screws (USA 8-40)
  • 2 Clamp Screws (USA 10-24 SHC Grade 8)
  • 2 Clamp guide Rails: (USA .125 Precision dowel pins)

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?: Black, 30 & 34mm diameter

What others are saying?: "While field testing, we found the bubble easy enough to see while sighting through the scope. Under very low light conditions, it took a little more effort to focus on the reference lines, most likely because the level isn’t exposed to any light from the top or bottom of the ring. At any rate, it didn’t interfere with the ability to make accurate long range shots at last light. In conclusion, if you’re looking for a set of very high quality rings for your long range rig, you owe it to yourself to check these out. The price point is comparable to other quality rings that require the additional purchase of an add-on bubble level.  You can purchase the the Force Recon Tactical Scope Rings here: Xtreme Hardcore Gear." Rockslide Blog

"I mounted each ring on my Badger scope rail and then did an alignment check with a 34mm lapping bar. Then I checked the alignment with a set of scope alignment bars and they were Dead On. The rings mounted Rock Solid and look Great. The level is calibrated perfect and there is no issues with these rings. These rings are of Excellent quality and I would highly reccomend these for any Tactical build. I like the fact that they are the lowest available for a 34mm scope. At .900" height they put my eye right on with my McMillan A5 stock." Sniper's Hide Review

Price point:

I need it now! Availability: Brownells or Amazon

Our Rating:

Pros:

  • Level verifies action/bore and scope are perpendicular with ground / shooting rest is level.
  • Less play forward/aft on picatinny rail before screw full torqued
  • Base clamp rides on stainless steel guide rails keeping the clamp perfectly aligned
  • 6 Torx bolts make a good solid mount
  • Rings and caps radiused on both sides to eliminate any marring or sharp contact points

Cons:

  • Clamp Screws used as crossbolt (some folks don't like this)
  • Bubble location makes visibility difficult in low light

Score: 8.5 Great

 

 

Featured FFL:

For FFL services I choose Promised Land Firearms in Toulon, IL.

Ryan's Links:

Gun & Gear Review Podcast

Hunter of Design

Hi-Point JCP .40 S&W Pistol

March 11th 2015 HiPoint at the range 004 The Hi-Point JCP .40 Smith&Wesson is a big, heavy, inexpensive pistol that makes Glocks look attractive. It is a 100% American made, polymer framed, striker fired, blowback operated semiautomatic pistol. Most blowback pistols are .380 caliber or smaller because as the power of the cartridge increases the size/mass of the slide must increase also. The slide on the JCP is big and heavy so it can contain the power of the .40 S&W round. The fixed barrel of a blowback operated pistol, like the Hi-Point, makes it inherently accurate. I was able to shoot hand size groups at 100 yards using randomly reloaded ammo that had at least three different manufacturers' headstamps. I was able to do this multiple times and did it twice on video, I posted one of those on YouTube.

You Tube Video

The Hi-Point JCP comes in a cardboard box with one 10 round magazine. The pistol seems simple, at first glance, but then you start to notice it has features that you wouldn't expect on sub-$200 pistol. It comes with a trigger lock, sight adjustment tool/key, chamber flag and an extra peep sight for the pistol. There are deep rear slide serrations, a cutout near the breech that serves as a loaded chamber indicator, a magazine disconnect safety, and the rear sight is adjustable for elevation and windage. It also has a proprietary accessory rail, but they do sell a picatinny adapter on their website. The front sight on the JCP is fixed with a painted yellow dot, while the rear sight has two painted and recessed red dots. It has a frame mounted safety on the left side, along with a standard magazine release button behind the trigger guard. All Hi-Point pistols come with a lifetime warranty. If you are the first owner or the fifth owner it doesn't matter it's under warranty. Many people would assume at this price point the JCP would be limited to standard powered ammunition, but they would be wrong, as it is rated to handle +P ammunition.

I purchased a Hi-Point JCP in .40 Smith&Wesson, initially as a range gun, in 2012. I could have purchased other pistols, but I had read enough positive reviews by people that owned Hi-Points to silence the negative comments from people that have never shot, held or owned one of these pistols. After firing nearly 3,000 rounds through the pistol, I feel I have enough information to give an informed review. I have used this as a range gun, used it to teach firearms classes, take firearms courses and even took the NRA Off-Duty Law Enforcement course! I have seen way more good than bad with this pistol and can say that it's a great buy, for the money. The pistol is a shooter but, sadly, some magazines may need to be tweaked to feed properly. My mags were causing the rounds to nose dive in the magazine. I have six magazines and I had to slightly bend the feed lips outward on all six with a multitool. After that, I have had no feeding problems in firing more than 2,500 rounds. I have cleaned the pistol three times, once out of the box, at 500 rounds and again before I took photos for this review. With about 2,000 rounds between cleanings, I have found no detriment in performance. I have shot full metal jacket ammo only through my pistol because it is a range gun for me. I have used reloads, steel, brass, and aluminum cased ammo from Tula, Lawman, Federal, Winchester and anyone else that had range ammo that I could find on sale. I have had no problems with any of it feeding or firing.

March 11th 2015 HiPoint at the range 005Taking it apart requires a 3/32” roll pin punch to remove the slide retainer pin. The directions say to use a pin punch, my suggestion is to use a ROLL pin punch instead. The roll pin punch will easily center on the slide retainer pin and not damage the pin itself unlike a regular pin punch. The take down is easy enough but a pin punch and a hammer are needed to remove that one pin. The JCP is a duty sized pistol with a 4.5 inch barrel, a eight inch over all length and a 38 ounce weight empty. The Hi-Point JCP is a big, heavy and bulky pistol that weighs more empty than a Glock 22 weighs loaded! I thought that I would have trouble finding a holster for my Hi-Point but I didn't have any trouble at all. Alien Gear, Galco and Tagua all make holster for this pistol, and I am sure there are more holster makers that produce factory holsters for Hi-Points. With the many Kydex custom holster makers around I am sure a custom holster can be made.

Iberaxtras.com is where you are directed for parts for JCP pistols. They allow Hi-Point JCP owners to get four free replacement parts for their Hi-Point pistol shipped to them free of charge! All that is needed is your information and your pistols serial number, everything but the frame is available for free. It is a great range gun, duty gun, home defense gun, truck gun, gun for your tackle box or a spare firearm to hand out to trusted family or friends that need one in an emergency. With its warranty, tough powder coat finish, reliability, accuracy and low price, you can't go wrong.

Firearms Insider Reviews 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame: A quality budget friendly pistol with a MSRP under $200 also one of the most maligned handguns on the internet.

Target Market: Anyone that wants a solid budget priced pistol.

FNBs (Features & Benefits of this product):

  • Lifetime warranty
  • Four free replacement parts with free shipping on those parts.
  • Fully adjustable rear sight
  • Trigger lock
  • Chamber flag
  • Sight Adjustment tool
  • $15 factory magazines
  • +P ammo rated

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available: Black or green powder coat finish

What are others saying: “I think it would be fair to say that if you were in the market for a eminently affordable handgun that was capable of firing authoritative cartridges for home defense or informal plinking, a Hi-Point pistol may just fill the bill.” - Paul Scarlotta- Shooting Times

Price Point:

MSRP: $199 Retail: $164.80

I need it now! Availability: Buds Gun Shop has them in stock.

Our rating:

Pros:

  • very budget friendly price
  • four free replacement parts with free shipping of those parts
  • lifetime warranty
  • great customer service

Cons:

  • magazines may need to be tweaked to feed correctly
  • proprietary accessory rail

SCORE: 7.5 Good75

 

 

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RTK Sweet Pea trigger for Ruger LCP

sweetpea1As many Ruger LCP owners may know, the trigger is probably the worst part of the firearm. RTK has improved this feature with its Sweet Pea trigger for the LCP. Having owned and shot my LCP for awhile now, I can appreciate this upgrade. When firing the firearm, my finger would get pinched by the trigger. The sharp recoil of the little .380 didn't help this any. After installing the Sweet Pea trigger I realized that the trigger bite had gone away. This is something that RTK says comes from the pivot point to trigger face relationship. sweetpea2The installation on the trigger can be a little overwhelming for some, but if you have some mechanical aptitude and some tools it can be done with ease. The online instructions from RTK are excellent! Here is a link to the trigger instruction: Sweet Pea Installation. They have pictures and descriptions to walk you step by step through the installation. Basically, if you can detail strip the pistol, you can install this trigger. I would recommend having a small dish to put the parts in. The only problem I ran into was getting the trigger block positioned correctly. It took me three tries, but that really only added about 5 minutes extra. The trigger kit also comes with a new stainless trigger pin. After installation the trigger needs to be adjusted. To do this you will need a .050" allen wrench or driver, one with a ball head would be even better. My trigger over-travel screw was turned too far in, and needed to be backed out a few turns to get the pistol to fire. It then would not reset completely so I needed to back out the pre-travel screw.  After adjusting the travel screws, the instructions say to back the screws out 2 turns and then put some thread locker on them, and screw them back in 2 turns. I found this to be time consuming due to the fact that the screws are not the easiest to get to. The only real negative that I had about the trigger is that it did not include a wrench for adjustment and getting to the set screws for adjustment is awkward.

I like the trigger okay. It does make the trigger pull feel smoother. And since it is adjustable, it makes the overall trigger travel shorter. A big plus. The width of the trigger also gives it a better feel to me. It is not a match grade trigger, nor should it be. But it is better than the factory Ruger trigger. However, I do believe there could be more room for improvement. RTK also offers a variety of triggers for other small semi-auto pistols.

sweetpea3

Firearms Insider Reviews - 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame: Improved trigger for Ruger LCP

Target Market: Ruger LCP owners, Concealed carriers

FNBs (Features & Benefits of this product):

  • Adjustable (Both Pre-Travel and Over-Travel)
  • Looks good
  • Available in different colors
  • Trigger feel is improved
  • Changed trigger pivot point (to help with trigger bite)

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?:

  • Black
  • Red
  • Hot Pink
  • Grey
  • Brite (Black w/polished sides)
  • Milled (Raw aluminum)

RTK Trigger colors

Price point: 

I need it now! Availability: RTK or Galloway Precision

Our Rating: 

Pros:

  • Better Feel
  • Pre-Travel Adjustment
  • Over-Travel Adjustment
  • Better Trigger Geometry
  • Color Choices
  • Very good online installation instructions
  • New Trigger Pin Included

Cons:

  • No supplied Allen wrench for adjustment
  • Must go online for instructions
  • Adjustment of the trigger is somewhat awkward

80Score: 8.0 Great

 

 

Chad's Favorite Link: ABC House Shooting Match

Firing Line Review

 

 

TangoDown Battle Grip

tangogrip4Photo_2015-03-13_09-38-23_AM The TangoDown Battlegrip is an AR-15 grip made by, you guessed it, Tango Down. The grip is more ergonomic than the standard A2 grip. Plus, it has a nice storage space inside. This storage is primarily designed for extra batteries, but one could put numerous other items in it. The storage compartment comes with some sort of foam inserts to keep the batteries from rattling around. At the base of the grip is an attached rubber plug. The Battlegrip also comes with a stainless steel grip screw. When using the supplied grip screw, and using the base plug, the handle is water tight. The grip also has a nice stippling effect on it to help prevent slipping. Last on the list of features is a tang that protrudes out in front, this tang covers the gap between the grip and the trigger guard. The grip is available in 3 colors: Black, Foliage green, and Flat dark earth.

I have used this grip for a long time, and it has held up well. It has a different grip angle then some other AR-15 grips, and so I  would recommend trying one out on a rifle before buying, as you may not like the angle.

Firearms Insider Reviews - 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame: AR-15 storage grip

Target Market: Those wanting a better grip, or those wanting storage in the grip

FNBs (Features & Benefits of this product):

  • Battery storage
  • Grip texture
  • Ergonomic

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?: Black, Flat Dark Earth, Foliage Green

What others are saying?:

Stretch on Brownells 5/5 stars:  Solid. Not a fan of finger grooves. Backstrap fills the hand and alignment is perfect for me.

Mike on BravoCompany 5/5 stares:  This grip is outstanding!  The ergonomic feel of it is wonderful compared to the standard pistol grip found on M4/AR15 type rifles and the fact that it has a built in compartment which keeps batteries, spare parts safe, secure and free from dust, dirt, water, etc. is another outstanding feature to make this grip worth every penny!

Price point:

I need it now! Availability: Brownells, Amazon, or your local gun shop

Our Rating:

Pros:

  • Grip texture
  • Water tight
  • Ergonomic

Cons:

  • Grip angle for some

Score: 8.0 Great80

 

 

Chad's Favorite Link: Saddle Butte Machine Gun Shoot - May 16th & 17th 2015

Magpul CTR Stock

Magpul CTR Stock

The collapsable stock is a defining feature of the iconic AR-15. The original design was simple: 6 positions achieved with a latch, lots of loose wobble and very little comfort to the shooter. Since the commercial availability of M-4 type rifles to civilians, the market for improved stock design exploded. There are many different manufacturers of collapsible stocks with different aesthetics, but few companies have gained the recognition and customer loyalty of Magpul Industries.
Magpul's original collapsible stock that was very popular was the MOE (Magpul Original Equipment) Many rifle manufacturers were producing rifles from the factory equipped with the MOE stock and other furniture in the MOE line. While the MOE stock was a great design, sleek and easy to install yourself, it began to fall out of favor as new common features were becoming a standard on riflestocks. That, and more discerning users could notice a small amount of play/wobble between the MOE stock and the receiver extension tube.

Magpul CTR Stock

Enter the Magpul CTR (Compact/Type Restricted). An evolution of the MOE stock, the CTR brings two new features to the table. The first is a friction lock that is designed to take up some of that wobble and play of its predecessor. Performance of the friction lock may vary depending on the buffer tube's dimensions, tolerances, etc. On my milspec extension tube, the CTR when locked is very nearly rock solid with no discernible play, while the MOE on the same tube has a small amount of rattle to it. 

Magpul CTR Stock

The second additional feature Magpul added to the CTR is an ambidextrous quick-detach sling swivel port. Whereas the MOE only has slots for slings to be run through the rear or forward facing base of the stock, the ability to utilized QD swivels on the CTR greatly adds to the end user's options customization. Many rifles have QD attachment points on handguards or receiver extension endplates, and having the ability to alter the sling's attachment points at the push of a button is a great addendum to the flexibility of the platform.

Magpul CTR Stock

The Magpul CTR stock and MOE stock share the same side mounting slots for mounting cheek risers to the stock. I have a LaRue Tactical RISR on my CTR, as it better aligns my dominant eye with an optic that is mounted on a taller base/rings. Unlike other cheek risers that are incompatible with AR15s due to interference with the charging handle when the stock is fully collapsed, the RISR has a reciprocating cheek piece that rides back with the charging handle when the LOP is set in the shorter positions. This of course isn't an issue with other rifle platforms that can make use of the Magpul CTR, like side charging rifles, modified AK-47/74's, or even chassis made for bolt action rifles.

Magpul CTR Stock

For a modern, adaptable carbine/rifle that needs a collapsable stock for transport, storage, smaller framed shooters or shouldering whilst wearing body armor, a collapsable stock like the CTR is exactly whats needed. The addition of the friction lock and the QD port make it an excellent evolution of the MOE, and a widely used stock overall. If you are going to pick one up for yourself, just be sure you know whether your extension (buffer) tube is milspec or commercial. I consider the walk from the parking lot back to the store to exchange for the right stock to be a "walk of shame" for our hobby, especially if you've done it more than once like I have!

Firearms Insider Reviews – 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame:  The CTR Stock is designed for light, snag-free, fast action with a friction lock system that minimizes excessive stock movement for enhanced weapon stability.

Target Market:  AR-15 owners, or other firearms that accept carbine-length receiver extension tubes.

FNBs (Features & Benefits of this product):

  • Drop-in replacement buttstock for AR15/M16 carbines
  • A-frame profile shields the release latch to prevent accidental activation
  • Friction lock system that minimizes excessive stock movement for enhanced weapon stability
  • Ambidextrous QD sling mount
  • 0.30" rubber butt-pad
  • Sloping cheek weld combines a slim profile with user comfort
  • Premium chrome-silicon lock spring provides positive locking and long service life
  • Side mounting slots accept optional cheek risers for NON-AR15/M16 applications
  • Compatible with Magpul ASAP® and other receiver-mount sling attachments
  • Rear/Bottom - 1.25" sling loops
  • Lanyard hole in toe for custom para-cord rigs
  • Weight: 0.55 lb
  • Length, Maximum: 6.90 in.
  • LOP Adjustment Range: 3.25 in. - Collapsed: 10.70 in. Extended: 13.95 in.
  • Mil-spec and Commercial-spec models.

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?: Black, FDE, OD Green, Foliage Green, Stealth Grey

What others are saying?:

"Best solution I have seen so far for a rock-solid fitment. Can't stand a stock that has any wobble in it and this one doesn't. Achieved simply with a double-locking system that is by necessity very simple to use. Also light weight, good cheek weld and has the slots I need for sling of choice. Can't beat it." Brownells Customer Review

"The butt stock that came on my M&P Sport rattled in a way that no gun should. This product eliminated that problem. It was not difficult at all to put on, and feels great. " MidwayUSA Customer Review

Price point:

I need it now! Availability:  Brownells, MidwayUSA and most local gun shops or outdoor stores.

Our Rating:

Pros:

  • Very robust construction
  • Easy Installation
  • Friction lock takes up wobble that most 6 position stocks are cursed with
  • Short LOP when fully collapsed
  • Quick to deploy
  • Rear QD sling point is a welcome addition

Cons:

  • Commercial / Milspec labeling is very small and can easily pickup wrong size by mistake.

Score: 8.5 Great

 

 

Featured FFL:

For FFL services I choose Promised Land Firearms in Toulon, IL.

Ryan's Links:

Gun & Gear Review Podcast

Hunter of Design

Magpul PRS Stock

Magpul PRS Stock

GOD BLESS THE MODERN SPORTING RIFLE. As many have said, the AR-15 (and AR-10) platform are like Legos for adults. Customization is the greatest selling point of either platform, as you can modify the rifle's furniture to optimize it's ergonomics and aesthetics for whatever role you desire.
If a more modern, long range accurate type of rifle is what you are after, the buttstock isn't typically the first part that gets attention. Logically a longer, thicker barrel is installed first to facilitate better accuracy. That component adds weight to the front of the rifle, tipping the balance forward and making some buttstocks, collapsable or otherwise, impractical. A heavier stock with the ability to custom fit the shooter and optic is recommended. The ability to adjust for length of pull (LOP) and cheek weld height is a huge upgrade for any rifle stock, especially the A2 style fixed buttstock that's been standard since the origins of the platform.

Magpul PRS Stock

Enter the Magpul Precision Rifle Stock (PRS). While it's not the newest stock on the block (debuted in 2005) the PRS still holds its own and is often the gold standard for how a precision rifle stock should look, feel, and perform. Not only is it compatible with the AR-15 in .223/5.56 and the AR-10 in 7.62x51, but also the HK91/G3 and the FAL have received adapted PRS2 models from Magpul. The PRS has graced the covers of magazines, DVD covers, and boutique black rifle catalogs since its inception, and for good reason. Its a damn sexy design that accomplishes the task of balancing and complimenting a precision rifle, while giving the shooter an anchor of consistency before the trigger is pulled.

Magpul PRS Stock

Today the PRS has resurged again on the covers of popular magazines and gun shop shelves as modern chassis for bolt action rifles are becoming more prevalent, with compatibility with AR-15 buffer tubes and aftermarket stocks. The features that make the PRS stand out as an optimal stock for benchrest AR-15 shooters carry over to a bolt action platform very well, as it still afford the shooter ultimate ergonomics for their head and torso as well as balancing out their front heavy rifles.

Magpul PRS Stock

The PRS is a direct replacement for an A1 or A2 fixed stock on an AR15/M16 with a rifle-length receiver extension tube. The cheek riser is designed to clear the charging handle of AR15/M16 rifles only. For AR10/SR25 pattern rifles, you will need to order the correct PRS stock.
For a precision rifle with a heavy front end, whether its an AR15 with a 24" bull barrel or even a bolt action rifle in a chassis with an equally heavy barrel and brake, the PRS is and ideal stock. Perfectly suited for balancing the weight, providing customized ergonomics for consistency on the firing line, and having robust mechanics that will provide a lifetime of service.

Firearms Insider Reviews – 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame:  Designed to offer the fine-tuned, customized feel of a precision target stock on a modern sporting rifle.

Target Market:  AR-15, AR-10, FAL, or HK 91 owners

FNBs (Features & Benefits of this product):

  • Mounts to rifle-length receiver extension tube without A2 spacer
  • Enhanced strength aluminum butt-plate withstands severe impact and recoil up to .50 BMG
  • Rubber butt-pad provides positive shoulder purchase to prevent slippage
  • Machined aluminum adjustment knobs with positive locking click detents
  • Black, hardened, solid steel adjustment shafts finished with a ferritic nitrocarburizing process
  • All aluminum components finished with MIL-A-8625F, Type III, Class 2 hard anodizing
  • Stout construction provides extra weight for improved weapon balance and stability
  • Bottom Picatinny-type rail with removable cover for use with a monopod
  • Sling Mounts: Front/Rear - 1.25" aluminum sling loops (left-right reversible)
  • Weight: 1.68 lb
  • Length, Max: 10.45-11.45" - LOP Adjustment: ~39 Clicks (0.026"/click) • LOP Adjustment Range: 1.00"
  • LOP Min: ~13.3" / LOP Max: ~14.3"
  • Cheek Height Adjustment: ~29 Clicks (0.026"/click)
  • Cheek Height Adjustment Range: 0.75"

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?: Black, FDE, OD Green, Foliage Green, Stealth Grey

 Optional PRS Extended Rubber Butt-Pad, 0.80" adds 0.50 in. LOP and 0.07 lb. vs. standard pad. Butt-pads are only for use with PRS AR15/M16 and PRS AR10/SR25 models. ** Specifications based on factory configuration.

What others are saying?:

"Only thing I would caution people of is the cheek piece will not benefit you if you shoot nose-to-charging-handle. This is needed to allow for proper function of the charging handle. I am 5'10", medium built and have the butt extended most of the way out for a comfortable prone shooting position with my cheek on the front edge of the cheekpiece." Brownells Customer Review

"In one sentence.  - perfect cheek weld. But for those that would like more detail: If you are looking for a drop in, precision-adjustable butt stock for  AR rifles with A1/A2 fixed stocks I'd not hesitate to recommend this one based on my experience with one I purchased 2 years ago.  There are a lot of different accessories for the AR15 series firearms, and though I wasn't wanting to put together "frankengun", I did want a stock that had a means of adjusting the length of stuck as well as comb height for the perfect alignment of my site choice, which was an EOTech.

Every shooter is physically built differently, male or female.  I'm as tall as many guys, but my arm length doesn't compare and my shoulders show my more delicate bone structure.  So adding something like the Magpul PRS is well worth it if you have other than normal length arms, neck or sighting requirements.  Compared to the A2 stock, the PRS can shorten LOP (length of pull) by .25" or extend it by .75" as well as provide three-quarters of an inch of comb height adjustment.(the height so that when you plant your cheek onto the stock, your eye is lined up just where it needs to be to line up with the reticle.)" Mausers and Muffins Review

Price point:

I need it now! Availability:  Brownells, and most local gun shops or outdoor stores.

Our Rating:

Pros:

  • Very robust construction and solid weight
  • Easy Installation
  • Weight helps balance longer / heavier profile barrels
  • Shorter LOP than the A2 fixed stock when buttplate is fully contracted
  • Positive clicks of cheek rest and buttpad adjustment wheels (newer versions have more thread pitch for larger movement per rotation)
  • Discreet polymer rail on underside for monopods, covers up when not in use
  • Multiple sling mounting options

Cons:

  • QD Sling Swivel or Swivel Stud screw sold seperately
  • Check weld surface position farther back, may affect eye relief
  • Not directional marking to let you know which way is up/down for cheek weld, in/out for buttplate.

Score: 9.0 Amazing

 

 

Featured FFL:

For FFL services I choose Promised Land Firearms in Toulon, IL.

Ryan's Links:

Gun & Gear Review Podcast

Hunter of Design

Rock Island Armory TAC 1911 FS 9mm

RIA3Rock Island Armory / Armscor is a Manufacture of 1911 pistols and some other firearms from the Philippines. I chose their TAC 1911 in 9mm. This is a full size parkerized, not blued, 1911 chambered in 9mm (duh). The pistol comes from the factory with a Novak style rear low-profile sight and a post front, both dovetailed into the slide. Both sights are target black with no dots of any type. This 1911 is a series 70 style, meaning it has no firing pin safety. The TAC model also comes with an extended ambi thumb safety, a beavertail grip safety, beveled magazine well, longer trigger, commander style hammer, full length guide rod, and a checkered flat mainspring housing. While the extended thumb safety is nice, it is too sharp for my liking. Where the safety angle back toward the frame, there is are really sharp corner. This sharp safety cause the pistol's safety to bite into your thumb under recoil, it was however better if you are one that rides the thumb safety. The frame of the pistol has vertical grooves on the front to help aid in your grip. I would have liked it better if they had checkered the front strap. The rear checkered mainspring housing feels nice in the hand, it is however made from plastic. The beavertail grip safety is very nice. It has a bump on the bottom to aid in depressing it and has a nice feel to it. Having a longer skeletonized trigger placed my finger just right, for people with shorter or longer fingers this might not be the case. The commander hammer and beveled mag well are nice touches also. The rubber checkered grips that come on the pistol where not of my liking, but they do supply an okay gripping surface. The RIA TAC 1911 makes for a good entry level 1911 with quite a few built in options.

lokgrip1911The TAC 9mm is extremely accurate. I could keep shots under a 1" circle at 7 yards off hand. The slide to frame fit on this pistol is very tight and I believe that is why it shoots so good. That, and the fact that the trigger was extremely smooth out of the box. The trigger has very little take up and over travel is adjustable with a set screw that is located in the trigger. The trigger pull weight is about 5 1/2 pounds. I have had no failures with the pistol in over 500 rounds of various types of 9mm ammo. Recoil is very manageable as one might expect with an all steel 1911 in 9mm. All in all I really do like this offering from Rock Island. It shoots great and would make an excellent starting point for a more custom pistol. Rock Island has many other 1911 style pistols also. So if this style isn't what you are looking for, they probably make a style you might want.

Firearms Insider Reviews - 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame: Entry level priced 1911 in 9mm with good options

Target Market: Shooters wanting a full size 1911 in 9mm

FNBs (Features & Benefits of this product):

  • Caliber: 9mm
  • Finish: Parkerized
  • Operation: Single Action Semi-Automatic with Thumb and Beavertail Safeties
  • Barrel: 5"
  • Length: 8 1/2"
  • Height: 5 1/4"
  • Width: 1.4" at the safety and 0.9" at the slide
  • Weight: 2.56 lbs
  • Grips: Textured black rubber
  • Sights: Novak style rear, Post front, both dovetailed in for drift adjustability
  • Safety: Extended Ambidextrous thumb and Beavertail grip
  • Capacity: 9+1
  • Trigger: Skeletonized
  • Hammer: Combat style
  • Beveled magazine well

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?: The Rock Island Armory Tac 1911 is available in many different styles and calibers available at Rock Island Armory

What others are saying?: 

  • Budsgunshop.com By: Preston O on 07/20/2014Rating:  [5 of 5 Stars!] This gun is amazing! This is my first 1911 and the first gun I've bought off Bud's. Took it out to the range the first weekend after I got it and put about 75 rounds through it without any issues. Zero issues! The gun cycles everything I've put through it. I have even hand cycled some Hornady Custom 147gr JHP through this bad boy and still zero issues. I've read that if you are going to run HP's through this then go with a larger bullet. Don't use 115gr or 124gr. I have read that they can have issues, but the 147gr run perfectly. The gun comes with a Metalform magazine which i highly recommend for this gun. I bought a Metalform 10rd and it runs perfectly. Again, zero issues! The only thing I will say is that the picture shows the new model with the small logo on the rear of the slide. I got the older model with the "Rock Island Armory" billboard on the slide, but it's not that big of a big deal.
  • Budsgunshop.com By: Andrew C on 07/09/2014Rating:  [4 of 5 Stars!] This was my first Rock Island Armory purchase and let me say it won't be my last. Fit and finish exceeded my expectations for a sub-$450 1911. It shot great right out of the box and with over 300 rounds through it, I've experienced no failures, even with the sometimes sketchy reloads and cast lead bullets folks give me. It came with nice brand name magazines (to which I added a slam pad). Accuracy is very good and with a full size 1911 frame shooting 9mm, recoil is light. Now, why only four stars. My pistol came with a firing pin stop that I could not remove. I personally think they put a little too much finish on the slide and it got stuck. I sent it off to RIA prepaid and they fixed it, no problem. Now, it is a really great pistol and one I love to shoot. I wish I could give it 4.5 stars but that isn't an option. Anyway, I am quite satisfied and recommend this pistol.

Price point: MSRP = $559 Retail = $465

I need it now! Availability: Check your local gun store

Our Rating: 

Pros:

  • Price
  • Novak style sights
  • Extended Beavertail grip safety
  • Full length guide rod
  • Extended skeletonized trigger
  • Beveled Mag-well
  • Combat hammer
  • Smooth trigger
  • Ambi-safety (see Cons)

Cons:

  • Thumb safety is sharp
  • Rubber grips
  • Plastic mainspring housing
  • Only comes with 1 magazine

Score: 8.5 Great85

 

 

Chad's Favorite Link: U.S. Tactical Supply

EXD Engineering Vertical Reticle Instrument

The EXD Vertical Reticle Instrument is the easiest and most accurate way to square an optic to a gun.

I'm about to share with you one of the most useful tools in my gun drawer. I'm almost certain that unless you already have some sort of trick or technique for mounting an optic squarely level to a firearm, you'll want to pick up one of these for yourself after reading this review.
The EXD Engineering Vertical Reticle Instrument is an adjustable, self-aligning tool that uses V-blocks to square up the scope's objective bell with the barrel, assuming your scope rings are quality and in spec. Once you tighten down the thumb screw to secure the V-blocks (you can use a rubber band to keep it in place if needed) you can use the bubble level to assure the rifle/shotgun/muzzleloader/pistol is resting level with the planet. Then, with the rings loosely tightened so you can rotate the scope in place, you want to look through the glass and make sure the crosshairs themselves are parallel with something thats level - a door frame, a fence post, or a plumb line that uses gravity to create a straight vertical reference. If the reticle is vertically squared and the bubble level in the EXD instrument is between the marks, your scope is aligned with the universe and you can tighten down your rings.
Now I have managed to mount optics on quite a few firearms without the use of such a tool, but the possibility of being skewed and non-level with the bore has always haunted me. Once I'd get the rings slightly tightened and the eye relief in the sweet spot, I'd either take a step back and fiddle with the magnification so I can catch a glimpse of the reticle in the narrow eye-box and just sorta get a feel if it looks square to the action, then double check by scoping something outdoors that I'm relatively sure has straight vertical edge. If the scope had a nice capped elevation turret I would balance an actual level tool on it, but that only would tell me the scope was level with the ground, not level with bore itself. I could spend and hour tinkering with it until it looks right, and it could still be way off.

EXD Vertical Reticle Instrument

For shooting 100-200 yards it may not be worth a second thought, but for ultimate precision especially at longer ranges, a canted crosshair reticle can and will have adverse effects on your scope's windage and elevation adjustments. Many gun stores, smiths, or scope dealers will mount a scope fore you, but really only "eyeball" it or use a reference that may not be all that precise. Hell, I've had someone tell me to just close my eyes, shoulder the rifle, and then whatever canted position the rifle is in my hands is good enough, then half-ass level the windage line and tighten the rings from there. This may be "good enough" for Bubba to bag a backyard buck, but not if you hope to be consistent with your firearm's optic at various ranges.
Yes, there might be some OCD tied into it, but a scope that you've leveled yourself, without paying someone else, really gives you reassurance as well as confidence in your rig (or in some cases, gives you less excuses at the firing line). The beauty is that this tool is so simple, it should work with virtually every firearm you want to mount a scope on, with only a few exceptions. I would strongly recommend buying the EXD Engineering Vertical Reticle Instrument, especially if you own multiple scopes and like to swap them around, or if you're business includes mounting optics for customers.

Firearms Insider Reviews – 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame:  Makes zeroing your scope faster and far more accurate

Target Market:  Scoped Rifle Owners

FNBs (Features & Benefits of this product):

  • Self Align V-blocks
  • Thumb Screw for tightening
  • View Slot
  • Bubble level to ensure scope and bore are square during mounting

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?: Unfinished Aluminium only

What others are saying?:

"I have mounted numerous rifle scopes and this is the best device for leveling the cross hairs I have found. Actually, it's used to level the rifle and scope, and then plumb the vertical reticle of the scope." Brownells.com User Review

"This tool changes weather a scope is level or not from an opinion to a fact. It's the best tool out there for leveling a scope. On some high power scopes the narrow window can be an issue but it still works." Brownells.com User Review

"This tool is indispensable for quick accurate perfectly level crosshairs. No more excess time fidling with back and forth alignment. If your in the profession you absolutely need this tool, its a money maker." Brownells.com User Review

Price point:

I need it now! Availability:  Available at Brownells.com

Our Rating:

Pros:

  • Removes the guesswork from mounting a scope and zeroing the reticle
  • Works with almost every firearm platform as long as the scope overlaps a round barrel
  • Compatible with Oval ocular scopes
  • Should work with optics on handguns, muzzleloaders, shotguns, as well as rifles.

Cons:

  • Barrels with rear iron sights may not work with this tool
  • Leveling the reticle perpendicular requires an outside reference ie: a door frame or plumb line
  • Expensive for what it is...would have been a great additional value if some sort of black string, thumbtack and weight were included

Score: 8.0 Great

 

 

Featured FFL:

For FFL services I choose Promised Land Firearms in Toulon, IL.

Ryan's Links:

Gun & Gear Review Podcast

Hunter of Design

Midwest Industries SPLP Flip Up Sights

Midwest Industries SPLP Flip Up Sights

There's a plethora of options for putting sights on an AR-15. The flooded market for just about every type of component allows us black rifle lovers to choose what style, function, and bottom dollar for each part. If you are shopping for iron sights, specifically models that collapse when not it use, and flip up into postion when needed, the options are pretty bountiful. When looking for some low profile back up irons that wouldn't look obtrusive on my Lone Wolf Distributors G9 Pistol, I picked up a set from Midwest Industries that fit the build and my budget fairly well.

Midwest Industries SPLP Flip Up Sights

The Midwest Industries SPLP Flip Up Sights (SPLP = Same Plane Low Profile) fall into what I would call the middle ground of the marketplace. While not the most expensive, but above the mid range, the MI SPLP sights certainly are designed and engineered better that lower cost flip up sets. The pivoting of the front sight tower/rear sight housing is certainly smooth, with a positive detent lock that can be heard with an audible 'click.' There is no side movement when I tried to wobble them.  They both do rock rearward in their detent about 1/8 to 1/4 of an inch, however the mechanism's tension forces them back forward to the correct position. The button to release the detent lock on both sights is pretty small, smaller than a safety button on a Remington 870 or Ruger 10/22. While they are difficult to unlock and collapse only by feel and muscle memory, its not impossible (and you are unlikely to be in a dire hurry to fold them down to begin with).

Midwest Industries SPLP Flip Up Sights

The front sight I chose is handguard height, and perfectly cowitness with a Vortex Sparc II. I specifically wanted an absolute cowitness, as well as a circular hooded front sight, which is sometimes marketed as the "HK style." To me these really made shooting a short, light recoiling 9mm carbine a dream. For most modern rifle owners, their red dot optic is their primary while their flip up sights are purely for back up. For me, the sight picture through these SPLP sights makes shooting even more enjoyable than the red dot itself. I would imagine that a carbine or rifle length firearm with these sights would still feel the same.

Midwest Industries SPLP Flip Up Sights

 Overall I would say that while these sights don't feel quite as solid and robust as their Troy Industries counterpart by only a narrow margin, the Midwest Industries SPLP sights are very exceptional and I'm satisfied with my purchase.

Firearms Insider Reviews – 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame:  Extremely low profile, battle-proven design

Target Market:  AR-15 rifle / pistol owners

FNBs (Features & Benefits of this product):

Rear Sight:

  • Same plane (absolute co-witness)
  • Low profile, sits only .4375 folded
  • Dual aperture design
  • Micro style windage knob featuring the same MOA adjustments as standard A2

Front Sight:

  • Uses standard A2 front sight post
  • Super smooth ball bearing pivot detent
  • 6061 aluminum, hard coat anodized
  • Handguard or Gas Block Height

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?: Black, Flat Dark Earth, or OD Green anodizing

What others are saying?:

"Low profile allows for install under optics such as ACOG or magnification for aimpoints and eotechs. Rugged enough to withstand field use. Locks into place easily and smoothly. Comparable to Troy Industries. I give it a 4 stars only because it not Troy Industries. Highly recommended for price and durability." Brownells Review

Price point:

I need it now! Availability:  Readily available online at Midwest Industries or locally.

Our Rating:

Pros:

  • Low Profile, co-witness looks and shoots great
  • Installation screw is flush / no snag
  • Smaller windage knob works well and smaller to keep overall profile low

Cons:

  • Anodizing will wear over time/use
  • Front sight tower / rear sight housing rock backwards slightly with force (but returned when released)
  • Release button is small/minute

Score: 7.5 Good

 

 

Featured FFL:

For FFL services I choose Promised Land Firearms in Toulon, IL.

Ryan's Links:

Gun & Gear Review Podcast

Hunter of Design

Lone Wolf Distributors Ultimate Adjustable Trigger

IMG_0430-e1420663781523.jpg

IMG_0430Let me start off this review by saying I am not a huge fan of Glocks. The grips never usually fit me right, they feel really blocky to me and they just don’t excite me like a wood and steel gun does. With my personal feelings on Glocks out of the way, let me say that Glocks are rugged, accurate and reliable handguns that have withstood the early criticisms leveled against them, and have emerged as the top handgun for law enforcement and personal defense. Their polymer frame offers light weight, along with some recoil reducing characteristics and manufacturing economy. The Tenifer treatment on the slide helps ensure that the guns resist corrosion, even after the black finish on the slide is worn away over time. I have seen many police trade-in Glocks with the black finish worn away from reholstering, and the exposed metal still did not show any signs of rust forming. Glocks are definitely in it for the long haul when it comes to quality construction.

The UAT is made of 6061 Billet Aluminum

However, one thing that some people do not care for is the trigger. To me, the factory Glock trigger feels very spongy. I definitely notice a “sproing” feeling just after the trigger breaks, and it can be distracting to me, and many other people as well. Due to the less-than-stellar factory trigger, there has been a growing number of Glock drop-in replacement triggers to help improve the trigger pull & feel. Many of these units use multiple pins in their assembly and generally are not adjustable after the trigger is installed in the frame. They are also quite expensive, with units ranging from $99.00 to upwards of $180.00. For those people who want to upgrade the trigger on their Glock, those features and prices can be prohibitive. There weren’t really any other options out there for people who wanted a easily adjustable and affordable aftermarket trigger….until now.

The pre-travel adjustment screw is visible just under the locking block

The Lone Wolf Distributors Ultimate Adjustable Trigger offers easy adjustability while the trigger is still installed in the gun. Couple that with the low retail price of $74.95 on the trigger, and I think Lone Wolf has a winner here. The trigger shoe is constructed out of 6061 billet aluminum and is held together with one simple, yet robust, allen head screw, and does not use any press out pins like you see in similar trigger units. The shoe is nicely radiused, and to me felt far better comfort wise than the stock trigger. The trigger bar that comes with the shoe is very nicely polished and eliminates any friction that may have been present with the stock trigger unit. The trigger safety has also been altered somewhat, and seems to sit more flush with the trigger unit than the stock unit does. I definitely noticed the difference in the trigger safety; that is to say I barely noticed it’s presence at all (which to me is a good thing!). However, testing the trigger safety’s function shows that it operates just as positively as the stock unit does (provided you adjusted it according to the well illustrated instructions; more on that later.)

The over-travel adjustment screw is easily accessible on the back of the trigger shoe.

I installed the UAT in a Glock 22 using a 9mm Lone Wolf conversion barrel. I used a 3.5 lb connector and a 6 lb trigger spring, also from Lone Wolf. Installation of the trigger was a snap, especially with the really well done instructions provided by LWD. Once the trigger is installed in the gun, the real fun begins. The trigger comes with two allen keys, with one a bit bigger than the other. These allen keys are used to adjust the pre-travel and over-travel screws that are on the trigger. The instructions show you how to do the initial setup of the trigger once you have it in your gun, and it is VERY, VERY IMPORTANT that you follow them. If you do not properly adjust the pre-travel and check it, you can cause a condition where the trigger safety does not rest in the proper place, and the trigger is free to be depressed without the safety disengaged. Following the instructions, it is very simple to adjust the pre-travel safely to your desired setting. Just insert the allen key in between the slide lock and the locking block. To remove pre-travel, you turn the screw clockwise, to add pre-travel, you turn it counter-clockwise. Simple as that. To adjust the amount of over-travel, you simply insert the allen key into the screw on the backside of the trigger shoe (in the magazine well area) and adjust to your preference. The best part about this is that it can all be done by simply removing the slide; further disassembly is not necessary.

After properly adjusting the trigger to my prefered amounts of pre- and over-travel, I checked the pull weight on my Lyman trigger pull gauge. With the 9mm LW Conversion barrel and the Glock 22 slide installed, the trigger broke cleanly at an average of 3.0 lbs. I then installed an Advantage Arms .22 Long RIfle Conversion unit on the same frame, and the trigger pull averaged around 3.4 lbs. There was a distinct difference in the trigger pull between the two configurations, with the conversion unit trigger pull feeling very crisp, like a finely tuned rifle trigger. I headed out to the range several weekends in a row to test the unit, and found that it functioned flawlessly as expected. Be sure to check out the video footage of the UAT in action on both the standard Glock 22 configuration and the Advantage Arms configuration, as it will give you a good idea of what I’m talking about. It is REALLY easy to just feather the trigger with the .22 Conversion unit and get a fast, accurate string of shots.

Glock 22 w/ UAT on bottom, Glock 35 on top with stock factory unit.

Overall, I am extremely impressed with what Lone Wolf has created. The UAT offers the end user a great amount of adjustability with easy installation and a very inexpensive price. Don’t let the price fool you, however; this is a quality unit. The construction is very nice and the precision machining utilized in making the trigger is readily apparent. Once assembled, the seam on the side of the trigger is darn near invisible with a quick glance. To get such precision on a small part like a trigger shoe is really impressive. It is such a huge step up, in my opinion, over the factory unit that, if I were to buy any more Glocks, I would automatically purchase one of these units for them. The inexpensive price coupled with the great quality and performance simply can’t be beat in the world of custom Glock triggers.                           You Tube Video

 

Firearms Insider Reviews - 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame: Provides the Glock shooter with a nicely made & robust trigger than can be adjusted for pre-travel and over-travel without fully disassembling the firearm.

Target Market: Those Glock owners who want to upgrade their triggers to a more robust and user-adjustable unit (adjustable WITHOUT uninstalling the trigger).

FNBs (Features & Benefits of this product):

  • Aluminum construction
  • Polished trigger bar
  • User adjustable for pre-travel and over-travel WITHOUT full disassembly.
  • Different trigger shape & radiused edges offers better trigger control & comfort.
  • Assembly uses only one screw.

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?: It is available only in silver 6061 billet aluminum at this time.

Price point:

I need it now! Availabily: You can purchase from Lone Wolf Distributors

Our Rating:

Positives:

  • Trigger feels amazing to use.
  • Solid billet aluminum construction; no plastic.
  • Polished trigger bar eliminates friction.
  • The trigger shape offers better control & comfort for the shooter.
  • Biggest plus? User adjustability for over-travel & pre-travel without uninstalling the trigger!!

Score: 9.0 Amazing90

 

Ryan Michad Links

Handgun Radio

Firing Line Review

 

 

Trijicon HD Night Sight

Trijicon-HD1I bought these sights to put on a Glock 22 that had the standard Glock sights on it.  I personally don’t care for the “Goalpost” rear sight that Glock uses.  I was looking for a sight that had a larger front dot to help in quicker front sight post acquisition.  It came down to the Trijicon HD Night Sights or the XS Sights Big Dot. Since I already have 3 dot sights on my other Glocks, I decided to go with the Trijicons, as they also have a three dot set up.  That is verses the XS sights that use a lollypop sighting system.  I felt that consistency throughout my handguns is important, so that no matter which one my wife or I grab, the sight picture will be as similar as possible. Trijicon-HD2

Upon taking my Glock to the range, I found that the sights were just what I was looking for.  As soon as I snapped it up on target my eyes were drawn to the front sight post like the mainstream media to a smooth talking liberal.  Well maybe not quite like that, I didn’t get weak in the knees, and start drooling.  As I continued to shoot, I found that they weren't the most accurate sights I had shot.  However, they served the purpose that I had gotten them for.  As a “combat” sight I feel that they are right on the money.  As for competition, I feel that they would be more than capable of allowing you to run and gun quickly.  So for competitions that speed is the key (ie: most three gun matches) I feel they would be great.  The rear sight is strong enough to aid in single handed slide manipulations.  In the future, I plan on putting these sights on other handguns I get.

Firearms Insider Reviews - 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame: The large front sight dot that allows for quick sight acquisition.  The three dot design allows for a sight picture that most people are used to.

Target Market: Anyone looking for a fast acquisition combat sight.

FNBs (Features & Benefits of this product):

  • Metal Body
  • Tritium-Phosphor inserts
  • sapphire window that helps evenly distribute Tritium's light
  • Silicone Rubber cushion
  • Protective clear coat and high visibility colored front sight post
  • “U” notch rear sight
  • subdued rear sight allows the shooter to more easily focus on the front sight

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?: There are two options for the front sight color.  They come with either a yellow or orange front dot.

What others are saying?: 

  • OpticsPlanet (Bob’s Review) In over 35 years training civilian and LE officers with firearms, I have used many different notch sites. The trijicon hd is without a doubt the best I have ever used. The large U on the rear site makes acquiring the large (yellow) front site extremely fast . I have them on every Glock I own.
  • Review on the Bang Switch: http://www.thebangswitch.com/trijicon-hd-night-sights/

Price point:

I need it now! Availability: You can purchase the Trijicon HD Night Sights from many retailers, including Amazon and directly from Trijicon.

Our Rating:

Pros:

  • Fast front sight acquisition
  • easy to shoot fast and make first shot hits at defensive ranges
  • Easy installation

Cons:

  • Cost
  • Not as accurate as other sight options

Score: 9 Amazing90

 

The only thing I could really mark these sight down on is the cost.  They are super fast to acquire, and get on target.

 

 

LOK 1911 Grips

LOKgun2 LOKgun1I received these LOK 1911 grips after discovering the company while searching for grips on Amazon. These grips are great. LOK has definitely done their homework.  LOK Grips is a new company that has ventured into the grip manufacturing world.  They offer a variety of G10 grips for 1911's, Beretta 92's, Ruger 22/45's, CZ-75's, and Sig 238 and 938's.  Various textures and color combinations are offered as well.

The grips I chose were the "Spec Ops" in an orange/black color combo.  The Spec Ops have a golf ball texture on the front of the grips panels, and slanted ridges on the back.  This design gave me a good grip on the gun and excellent recoil management.  I originally thought that these grips might be too aggressive, but they are very comfortable to shoot with.  My hands were not any worse for wear after shooting with the LOK Spec Ops grips.

lokgrip1911LOK offers a number of different options for the grips. After you have selected the style and texture, you can select ambi-safety cuts, style of bottom cut, and magazine release cuts.  Since I chose 1911 grips, I opted for a magwell bottom cut, a magazine relief cut, and an ambi-safety cut.  I noticed that with the magwell cut, LOK also has relief cuts, on the back side of the grip, for the main spring housing pin.  This shows how much quality they put into the manufacturing process.

I am very pleased with these grips. They are attractive, functional, and less expensive than other G10 grips on the market. They are a very high quality grip at decent price.

LOKgrips1

Firearms Insider Reviews - 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame: Good looking functional grips

Target market: Any shooter who wants a functional, good looking grip, with emphasis on functionality.

FNBs (Features & Benefit):

  • Lightweight G10 material
  • Texture options
  • Color combinations
  • Grip cut options

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?:  Many colors and options, please go look for yourself at LOK grips

What others are saying?:

  • "Lok Custom Grips... Best Value Anywhere on 1911 Custom Grips!"  - Amazon
  • "I picked up a pair of grips today at the gun show. I love them, they fir great and you gotta love the price." - Facebook

Price Point:

I need it now! Availability: Amazon

Our Rating:

Pros:

  • Good grip texture
  • Style options
  • Color options
  • Lightweight
  • Made in U.S.A.
  • Fast shipping

Score: 8.5 Great85

 

 

Chad’s Favorite Link:  U.S. Tactical Supply

Firing Line Review

 

 

Alien Gear Cloak Tuck 2.0 IWB Holster Review

Alien Gear Cloak Tuck 2.0 IWB Holster The market for inside the waistband (IWB) holsters has seen a surge of innovation in design and materials in the recent years. At first glance they may all seem the same in form and function, but anyone who carries concealed on a regular basis will know the difference on the hip. Each concealed carrier has a different frame, and can be themselves a variable as to what brand of holster fits best. A lightweight holster with the right combination of materials can be the solution that fits wider (and thinner) range of people.

Enter the 'Cloak Tuck 2.0' from Alien Gear Holsters.  This IWB holster stands out from the pack with a unique composition. Technically referred to as a hybrid, the lightweight design has a soft Neoprene backing that is thinner and more flexible than traditional leather backings, and provides a better conforming fit and comfort to your body. The Neoprene material is completely waterproof, which will prevent corrosive sweat from soaking in and reaching your pistol. The secret to the backing is an internal ABS polymer core that gives flex but is strong enough to not sag down with the weight of a hefty handgun.

Alien Gear Cloak Tuck 2.0 IWB Holster

The Alien Gear Cloak Tuck 2.0 IWB Holster has a plastic handgun half-shell that is fully swappable for versatility with other guns in your collection. The shell is made in a quicker fashion than most other 'boutique' kydex holsters, and this simplicity in the manufacturing process trickles right down to the price tag for the end user. By no means is this a poor quality holster, just the responsibility for retention is shared amongst the belt, waistband of the belt, and the user's hip. I know it's far from rocket science, but sometimes the simpler solutions are the best.  The half shell reduced the overall profile of the holster, and thus prevents factors that cause imprinting of the firearm through clothing.

The Cloak Tuck 2.0 holster comes equipped either with Alien Gear's standard nylon clips, designed for 1 .25" to 1.5"  inch belts, or their steel clips that fit belts up to 1.75" inches. For enhanced conceal-ability, there are nylon "C" clips and "J" clips are also available on the website as add-on items. These clips would be ideal for anyone who tucks their shirt over the pistol, and does not wish to have obvious clips exposed over the top of the belt. The "C' or "J" clips go beneath the belt and hook under the edges, which gives a more innocuous look. The holster also includes a parts pack containing multi sized screws and rubber spacers, along with one T Nut, Finish Washer, and 3/32 Hex Key.

Alien Gear Cloak Tuck 2.0 IWB Holster

I ordered this holster for the Smith & Wesson M&P Shield, to really get a sense of concealability of a single stack defensive pistol. Borrowing a friend's Shield, we were both able to test the holster by drawing in the standing, sitting, and walking positions. After comparing notes, we both agreed the Cloak Tuck 2.0 had a better feel than other holsters we both respectively have tried in the past. The Neoprene was soft on the skin and keeps your skin from feeling sweaty, irritated or suffocated at the end of the day. The thinness and flexibility also made inserting and removing the holster from the pants easier than rigid leather-backed holsters. This, along with the lightweight, may also fit your regularly sized pants instead of having a designated pair thats one size up to accommodate an IWB holster.

The only factors I took as a trade-off with this holster are two-fold:  When reholstering the firearm, the flexible backing will deform instead of guide your muzzle downward into position. I found that reholstering from a slight angle caused this issue to repeat, and the slide could come out of battery. Leather offers more resistance that would guide the gun into position easier, but during an altercation the holstering is the slowest and least critical part anyways.  The second issue I found was more of a personal preference. Instead of grommeted or regular holes for adjusting the ride height, Alien Gear had installed all 6 nuts, leaving 4 exposed. While this makes for initial configuration faster and easier, removing the unused nuts with barbed backings would be more troublesome than leaving them installed, leaving them exposed WILL wear on your clothes overtime.

** I've decreased the rating to 6.5 since initially reviewing this holster, as issues and wear have shown more over time. Also, the positioning of the shell put the rear of the pistol's slide off center from the sweat guard. Modification to the screw holes was necessary to shift the gun over slightly so the slide and sights didn't jab my side when seated.**

Because the overall for the price point, this holster is hard to beat. Other brands on the market reaching as low as $60 or $50 dollars make compromises in either plastic vs kydex, or leather quality, or stitching reinforcement. For almost half that price, you can get a quality holster from Alien Gear that accomplishes exactly what and IWB holster should do, without abducting your paycheck!

Firearms Insider Reviews - 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame: Our 'Cloak Tuck 2.0' Neoprene Composite Holster is our most comfortable and stable holster yet. 

Target Market: Concealed Carry

FNBs (Features & Benefits of this product):

  • Lightweight design
  • Soft neoprene body-side layer
  • Inner ABS polymer core
  • Completely waterproof
  • Fully swappable handgun shell for versatility.
  • Comes equipped either with standard nylon clips, designed for 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 inch belts, or steel clips that fit belts up to 1 3/4 inches.
  • For enhanced conceal-ability, nylon "C" clips and "J" clips are also available as add-on items.

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?: Black

What others are saying?: "Alien Gear has nailed it. The simple design means the cost comes in below most other holsters–$35.88.  New pieces and parts are available as needed. New Kydex shells, too. If you aren’t someone who owns a lot of guns, there’s always the shell-swap option.  All told, this holster is comfortable, dependable, easy to conceal, and modular. I’d pay a lot more than $36 for that."

Price point:

MSRP = $35.88

I need it now! Availability on aliengearholsters.com

Our Rating:

Pros:

  • The back layer of neoprene is very soft and didn't get excessively sweaty
  • Completely waterproof
  • Lightweight & comfortable for all day carrying
  • Slim profile reduces printing, can make IWB 1911 carry possible
  • Easy to get into pants
  • Includes varying sizes of nuts and spacers and the allen tool

Cons:

  • Neoprene backing is quite flexible, and reholstering at the wrong angle can hang up the process, cause slide to come out of battery
  • Logo artwork was wearing off (may have been temporary marking for short run of Clock 2.0)
  • Nuts are pre-placed and exposed, as opposed to one set of nuts to disassemble and adjust (removing nuts would cause damage to backing)
  • Position of the slide was off center from sweat guard and required modification of the shell
  • Others users have experienced rusting on the back's exposed screws, and even comfortable skin wear

Score: 6.5

 

 

Featured FFL:

For FFL services I choose Promised Land Firearms in Toulon, IL.

Ryan's Links:

Gun & Gear Review Podcast

Hunter of Design

Firing Line Review

Kahr CM9 Review

kahrcm9-1The Kahr CM9 is Kahr Arms' budget priced, polymer framed, micro-compact 9mm with a stainless steel slide. When I say budget, what it means is this: Standard rifled barrel instead of a polygonal rifled one, a staked polymer front sight and not a dovetailed in metal front post, a MIM (metal injected molded) slide stop as opposed to a machined one, and a less machined slide. All of these steps reduce the cost of the CM9, but don't be mislead, this is still a quality firearm. As with all of the Kahr firearms, this one is a striker fired double action only. The trigger has a long, but super smooth pull. The CM9 comes from the factory with 1 six round flush fit magazine. Other magazines are available, and it will take the original K9 7 round magazines but they will stick out the bottom by about 1/2". When I measure the pistol the length is 5.7" and the height is 4.25" with the magazine inserted. The width is as advertised at .90". The weight fully loaded with 7 115gr Cor-Bon's comes in at 21oz's. The pistol uses a standard lock breech tilting barrel Browning style system. Included within the slide is a passive striker block to help prevent accidental firing if the gun were to be dropped or something to that affect. Disassembly is very easy also. Make sure the firearm is unloaded and there isn't a magazine in the gun.  Slide the slide back about 1/2" until the crescent shaped cut out is in line with the slide stop, then push the slide stop pin out from the other side.  Release the slide, and as slightly pulling the slide forward, pull the trigger and the slide will slide right off. kahrcm9-3Being that the Kahr CM9 is small and lightweight, it lends itself to being a dedicated concealed carry pistol. The pistol is easily concealed under a t-shirt with a good IWB holster. If you are of larger stature, it could even be considered a pocket pistol. How does it shoot, you ask?  It shoots as one would expect for a micro 9mm pistol.  I could keep all my shots under 3" at 10 yards with all the ammo I fed it. The gun's recoil is VERY snappy, as one would expect from such a small powerful pistol. If you are recoil sensitive, this might not be the pistol for you. Also if you are new to shooting, the CM9 might be too much gun to handle. Kahr says to give the pistol a 200 round break-in period. In the first 100 rounds I fired, I had about 10 rounds of Speer Gold Dot 124gr +p cause the slide to lock back with rounds still in the magazine. These were the only malfunctions I have had with the pistol. After breaking in the pistol, I fired 50 rounds of the same Speer Gold Dot's without a single problem. All the other types of ammo I tried shot flawlessly.

If you are looking for a small lightweight carry pistol, this might be one to consider.

Firearms Insider Reviews - 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame: Small, inexpensive, lightweight, sub-compact 9mm pistol

Target Market: Concealed Carry

FNBs (Features & Benefits of this product):

  • Caliber: 9mm
  • Capacity: 6+1
  • Operation: Trigger cocking DAO; lock breech; "Browning - type" recoil lug; passive striker block; no magazine disconnect
  • Barrel: 3.0", conventional rifling; 1 - 10 right-hand twist
  • Length O/A: 5.42"
  • Height: 4.0"
  • Slide Width: .90"
  • Weight: Pistol 14 ounces, Magazine 1.9 ounces, total 15.9 ounces
  • Grips: Textured polymer
  • Sights: Drift adjustable, white bar-dot combat sights
  • Finish: Black polymer frame, matte stainless steel slide
  • Magazine: 1 - 6 rd flush floorplate

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?: None

What others are saying?:

By Robert L  4/5 stars at Buds Gun Shop

Great gun. I have put about 100 rounds through it so far with no malfunctions. The sight and trigger wil take some getting use to. Great size to carry though.

By Joey K 4/5 stars at Gander Mountain

Love the compact and super lightweight design. Small and light enough to pocket carry all day and almost forget that its there.

Excellent review by Massad Ayoob on the CM9

Price point: 

MSRP = $460.00

Retail = $331.00 at Buds Gun Shop

I need it now! Availability: Check your local gun store

Our Rating:

Pros:

  • Small size
  • Lightweight
  • Smooth trigger
  • +p rated
  • Price

Cons:

  • Sharp Recoil
  • Only comes with 1 magazine

Score: 8.5 Great85

 

 

Chad’s Favorite Link:  Albany Rifle and Pistol Club

 

 

 

Negrini Dedicated 1911 Handgun Case Review

negrini2 For those unfamiliar with Negrini you should definitely familiarize yourself with them. To me, they bridge the gap between wanting security/strong construction and lightweight/slim construction. If you want something more sturdy than your average thin plastic case with flimsy foam, but don’t want to sacrifice half your trunk to get your pistol to the range, this case by Negrini is a great choice. Although built and marketed as a dedicated 1911 case it can fit, and store securely, most medium to full size pistols. When you add built in locks it makes legally transporting in some states easier it is one of the most versatile single pistol cases I have seen.

negrini1

negrini4

negrini3Firearms Insider Reviews - 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame: Quality and secure construction without bulk

Target Market: High end gunners perhaps the people already familiar with their shotgun cases.

FNBs (Features & Benefits of this product):

  • Slide length adjustability
  • Storage for a few mags and more
  • Proprietary double wall abs constructions
  • Hand finished
  • Double locks built in
  • Customizable finishes

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?: It would appear that anything is possible given the money is available

What others are saying?: Cannot find any third party reviews for this product.

Price point:

MSRP = $149

Retail = Have not located any places other than the manufacturer site.

I need it now! Availability In your hands today not very likely, however you can order direct from Negrini.

Our Rating:

Pros:

  • Build Quality
  • Built in Locks
  • Finish Options
  • Storage Versatility

Score: 8.585

 

Featured FFL:

For my gunsmithing and FFL services including custom Cerakoting, I choose Dynamic Combat Solutions. Gus is really great to work with and you can check him out at his website here.

Sam's Links:

Guns of Hollywood Podcast

NJ Gun Blog

Traditions Firearms ALS 2100 Shotgun Review

Traditions ALS 2100 By Justin Miles

I have almost three years worth of experience with this great shotgun. In short, it's usability completely outweighs the bargain price you can expect to pay for this gun. I have not had any serious issues from its use, and would highly recommend picking one up a Traditions Firearms ALS 2100 Shotgun from the shelf if you find one used.

Firearms Insider Reviews - 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame: A very lightweight shotgun that is very affordable

Target Market: Hunters and personal-defense advocates that need something that is both cheap and user friendly

FNBs (Features & Benefits of this product):

  • Lightweight shotgun and has great reliability
  • Comes with a recoil base pad.
  • Low recoil
  • Takes all kinds of twelve gauge shells up to 3 inches)

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available? Camouflage synthetic and hardwood

What others are saying?: On Shotgun News, the forum member SpecialEd says that it’s a great shotgun that shoots slugs very well.

Price point:

MSRP = Not Available Retail = $150 to $350

I need it now! Availability: Used Firearms websites - Armslist, Buds Guns, Gunbroker, Local Gun Shops

Our Rating:

Pros:

  • Very reliable
  • Lightweight
  • Great trigger

Cons:

  • Very few spare parts
  • It’s hard to remove the magazine blocker from the tube. You need a special tool for this.

Score: 8.0 Great80