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:


  • Very reliable
  • Lightweight
  • Great trigger


  • 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


CCOP USA 1-6X30 Tactical Rifle Scope with Illuminated Reticle Review

1624i_1Allow me to let you into a little industry insider secret. Everyone walking the SHOT show has a shopping list.  It doesn't matter if you are from the media, a retailer, manufacturer, owner or representative, we all walk around the grounds of SHOT with an item in mind we want to checkout/try/asses for the purposes of buying it later.  I’m no different, one of my top items in mind while I was wondering the endless halls of the 2014 SHOT show was a variance 1-4X or 1-6X tactical scope for my favorite AR15.  Don’t get me wrong. ACOGs are great and so are EOTechs but they are very specialized and wonderfully engineered tools that will execute the task they were built for flawlessly while burning a very big hole in your pocket… I was on a task to find a good quality glass that will give me both the CQB red-dot reflex sight capabilities but will also give me some magnification capabilities for the 75-200 yard range where a red dot sight starts to be more of a guess and less of a precision tool.  I could, I suppose, go for an EOTech with a magnifier, but there are 2 things I didn’t like about this combo: first, the logistics of mounting/un-mounting and the need to carry the magnifier somewhere while it’s not mounted was a little too annoying for me. Second was the painful $1000 price tag (on the low end!)  All of the above made the variance scopes very popular recently with the tactical shooting community, particularly the AR15 and AK47 owners.

So, I’ve set a goal to find something good for a sub $300 budget.  Now don’t get me wrong, I checked, felt and drooled over ALL the optics in the 1-4X/1-6X categories. I’ve been to every optics vendor from Sun Optics to NightForce. I checked the offering from Vortex, US Optics, Leupold, and many other vendors I can’t remember their names (so, so many…)  After 3 loooooonnnnnggg days of wondering the grounds, in a dark corner of the basement level, I ran into a small booth of a company called CCOP-USA. A new(ish) Chinese manufacturer that I haven’t seen before that offers all kinds of optics and optics accessories. Tired and disappointed that I couldn't find what I was looking for, I had no big expectations for their product and figured they’d be low quality as most of the other no-name eastern manufacturers I saw so far.

1624i_6Boy was I wrong. First, they had both 1-4x AND 1-6X options. The first thing you notice when you look through the glass is how clear it is and how much light goes through it. This is probably due to the 30mm tube (most other 1-4X optics have a 24mm tube which let less light through.The Illuminated reticle and the big diameter make it feel like a red-dot reflex sight. Having the reticle backed by the black reticle and lines guarantee that even if the battery runs out you can still use the optics (point down for EOTech on this one).  One huge compliment for these guys is that their 1X is the closest 1X I’ve seen in any of these 1-4X/1-6X optics. Including some of the expensive brands!

1624i_3A twist of the ring and you get up to 6X magnification. Considering most “budget” scopes are 3-9X this covers a very good distance.  So, getting one is a little slow (about 7-10 days to get it) but when I got it, I couldn't wait to mount it and head to the range.

I had it mounted on my PS90 with a one piece scope mount that also positioned the optics high enough at my eyes level.


Zeroing was real easy thanks to the “clicks” adjustment mechanism on the scope (which usually only exist on the more expensive scopes).1624i_4

I had it zero at 25 yards and then switched to 50 yards, 75 yards and 100 yards. I had no problem staying on target and hitting every time.  SO, to the question you’re probably asking yourself by now, what’s the cost?  Well, this is one of the coolest thing about this scope. MSRP is only $310 and you can find retail in the $190-$250 range.  I gave this product a score of 8.0.  The only reason I didn’t score it higher is because I don’t have it long enough to testify to its long term usage durability but I promise I’ll have a follow up review in a few months.

I guess SHOT was successful after all…

Firearms Insider Reviews - 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame: Best Bang for your buck in the variance range tactical scopes

Target Market: Tactical shooters / AR15 and AK47 owners that look for a budget aware alternative

FNBs (Features & Benefits of this product):

  • Model: SCP-1624i
  • Magnification: 1X-6X
  • Tube Diameter: 30mm
  • Objective Diameter: 24mm
  • Field of view @100yards: 115-19.2ft
  • Eye Relief: 4.5"-4"  
  • Exit Pupil: 10-4mm  
  • Click Value: 1/2"  
  • Length: 265mm  
  • Weight: 508g
  • Reticle: CQB
  • Illumination: Red / Green
  • W/E: ≥40'  

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?: Comes with a soft elastic scope cover

What others are saying?: Their eBay store has over 3700 reviews with a positive percentage of 99.7%

Price Point:

MSRP = $310 Retail = $225

I need it now! Availability: CCOP USA 1-6X30 Tactical Rifle Scope is available here.

Our Rating:

+ Easy on the budget + A twofer: you get a CQB sight and a 6X scope in one package + Zero adjustment is easy with no tools required + Shock proof + Water proof + Fog proof + Illuminated reticle + Black reticle marking to backup in case of dead battery

- New/unfamiliar manufacturer with no history or long term reviews. - Shipping could take up to 10-15 business days

Score: 8.0 Great80



Joseph's Featured Link:

Big D Armory


Magpul- SGA 870 Stock and MOE 870 Forend Set



After nearly a decade of gun ownership and being involved with the shooting sports the expression of “buy once cry once” is finally starting to sink in. I was contemplating the best way to make my stock 870 express a bit more tactical and in trying to save money picked up a non recoil suppressing Knoxx stock by Blackhawk. I saved almost fifty bucks over the cost of a new Magpul set but what I got in return were poor ergonomics and a sore cheek. Not to say Blackhawk doesn’t make good stuff, the fit of that stock was not for me. I now learned my lesson with the Magpul SGA Stock for 870 and the Magpul MOE forend for 870. These items are rock solid and smart. With an instinctive shooting discipline like shotgunning, ergonomics and user fit are crucial.

m870-1 m870-2

With 2” of adjustment in length of pull and nearly an inch of cheek weld adjustment the applications for this stock system are many. The forend is minimalistic yet robust at the same time. It gives you plenty of purchase and has the abilities to accept MOE rails, however is not cumbersome. I have been a fan of Magpul for a very long time and the more I get into their product line the more I become a fan of their products.

Firearms Insider Reviews - 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame: Great customizable ergonomics that lend themselves to both defensive and sporting purposes.

Target Market: Who does this product serve best?

FNBs (Features & Benefits of this product):

  • Ambidextrous
  • User configurable
  • Improved ergonomics
  • Spacer system to adjust LOP
  • Optional risers to adjust cheek weld height for use with sights or optics.

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?: These stocks and forends come 3 color options of Black, Orange, or Magpul FDE. Brownells Product Page

What others are saying?: Users on Brownells are giving this all 5 star ratings for purposes from defense to hunting. Brownells Product Page

 Price Point:

I need it now! Availability: Brownells for online purchases but these can be found in chain stores such as Cabelas and Bass Pro Shops.

 Our Rating:

+-Ergonomics +-User Customization +-Multipurpose +-Compatible with optics and sights +-Durable

Score: 9.5 AmazingAmazing



Featured FFL: I recommend Dynamic Combat Solutions of Wayne, NJ for my firearms needs including full FFL, gunsmithing, and customization services. Dynamic Combat Solutions

My Links:

Brownells Oxpho-Blue Review

12731519895_3d394384ca_b By Bradley Johnson

I had heard good things about Brownells, but this was my first experience with one of their products.

I recently purchased a Lee Enfield rifle. It came with a 5 round hunting magazine. 5 round magazines were never produced for this rifle. In order to make this rifle legal for deer hunting, Bubba took a hack saw, and a blow torch to a standard 10 round mag.

As you can see in the photo, brass was used to solder the bottom of the mag to the chopped upper portion. The mag was in terrible shape when I received it. I spent a lot of time stripping the spray paint, and smoothing out a lot of the rough sanding/scrape marks. I knew that the blue would not take to the brass, but I wanted to restore the magazine as well as possible.

I chose the creme formula because it allows for more control. The liquid variant does a great job as well, but I felt that the viscosity of the creme would be beneficial. I found it easy to use, and the results were terrific! I know that nothing can come close to a traditional hot blue, but Brownells Oxpho-Blue is definitely the next best thing.

The key to success is preparation. It is important to remove any previous finish, and polish the surface. Degreasing the metal is not required, but I would recommend it (I used Acetone). Heating the metal is also not required. However, I would highly recommend it. I've worked with metal for years, and I can tell you from experience that warm metal will accept a treatment far better than cold.

My process: 1. Polish 2. Degrease 3. Heat 4. Apply Oxpho-Blue 5. Remove Oxpho-Blue with a used clean T-shirt 6. Polish with 0000 Steel Wool 7. Repeat steps 3-6 until desired finish is achieved 8. Flush with hot water to stop the action of the acid 9. Apply oil or CLP to all blued surfaces and let cure over night 10. wipe down the following day

For only $10, I was able to refinish this magazine (with plenty of creme left for future projects). It would also be nice to use for small touch-ups on the high wear areas of hot blued parts. It is by no means a replacement for traditional hot blue. However, I am really satisfied with this product.

Firearms Insider Reviews - 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame: The toughest cold blue. Application is reasonably simple.

Target Market: All shooting enthusiasts, and collectors.

FNBs (Features & Benefits of this product):

  •  Creme formula offers more control
  •  Brownells oxpho-blue offers a high level of protection without the cost of traditional hot blue

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?: Bluing is a color, in itself, so is only available in one color.

What others are saying?: “I started trying to remove the Oxpho-Blue from the barrel with 000 cleaned steel wool. The more I tried to remove the blue it started getting an even polished lustrous blue finish over the whole gun. I wanted it darker so I put a very small amount of blue on 000 cleaned steel wool and would rub it with some pressure on the gun until it dried. After letting it set for a few minutes I would burnish the dried blue and it got better and better. Repeated this 6 times. It only took about 2 hours to do this.

My friend cannot believe how good the blue job looks, far exceeded his and my expectations.” - Cabelas Customer Review

Price Point:

I need it now! Availability: You can purchase Brownells Oxpho-Blue from Brownells  and Cabela's.

Our Rating:

+ Low cost + Ease of use

- Not as durable as hot blue

Score: 8.585

FIREClean Review

FIREClean 1 Fireclean gun oil is one of the best gun oils I have used to date.  It does everything it should do and more. It lubricates, protects, cleans, and most importantly it helps reduce carbon buildup.  While using Fireclean I have found that my rimfire's will shoot for a longer number of rounds and are easier to clean. The carbon and even lead deposits seem to just wipe off.  When using this oil with a suppressor on an AR15 there is less buildup of gunk on the bolt carrier.  Fireclean lubricates extremely well, it makes rifles and pistols cycle smoother and is better than any other oil I have used.

FIREClean 2FIREClean 3








Firearms Insider Reviews - 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame:  A gun oil that repels carbon fouling, is non-toxic, odorless, biodegradable, sticks to metal, heat resistant and made in the U.S.A.

Target Market:  All gun owners but more in tune with suppressed or full auto firearms users.

FNBs (Features & Benefits of this product):  From product website: "While odorless, biodegradable, and safe, FIREClean destroys carbon contamination and helps prevent future fouling. FIREClean conditions metal - to resist carbon and other fouling buildup as well as providing durable lubricity."

  • Lubricates
  • Cleans
  • Repels Carbon
  • Absorbs into metal for lasting protection
  • Available in 2 fluid oz bottles

What others are saying?:

  • "Best I've Used"  "Surprisingly Great"  "Awesome Stuff" on Amazon with 4.7/5 stars
  • "The Best Oil"  "Amazing Product"  "Best Oil I have ever used" on Brownells with 4.9/5 stars

Price Point:

I need it now! Availability:  Readily available at Amazon and Brownells.

Our Rating:

+ Carbon just doesn't seem to build up + Excellent oil + Non-Toxic + Long Lasting Lubrication + Small amount goes a long way

- Not the best at cleaning, but it does make cleaning easier after the initial oiling

Score: 9.0 Amazing! 90


Chad's Favorite Link:

Tactical Paradise


Mesa Tactical Sureshell Shotshell Carrier with Integrated Picatinny Rail

Mesa 1

When you combine classic design with the desire for end user customization, there is bound to be innovative companies that will rise to the occasion to give the customer what they want. Just like the AR-15, common shotgun patterns such as the Remington 870 and Mossberg 500  are easily customizable with a bevy of affordable and easy to install parts and accessories. One company that provides this is Mesa Tactical.  One of the things that makes me love this company is its dedication to the scattergun. They focus exclusively on products to make shotguns more effective tools for whatever purpose you choose to utilize them for.

Firearms Insider Reviews - 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame: Multipurpose, platform focused and versatility. Mesa

Target Market: Operators, 3-gun competitors and home defense.


Key Features

  • Milled from 6061-T6 aircraft aluminum
  • Bead blasted and mil-spec hard anodized
  • Integral MIL-STD-1913 picatinny rail
  • No gunsmithing installation
  • Innovative rubber friction retention system

Key Benefits

  • Solid mounting platform for optics
  • Rock Solid retention of shotshells

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?:  There are a variety of models that have different capacities and lengths of rail. There is also their line of non railed Sureshell holders.  While mine is for an 870, they make models that correspond to a variety of firearms.   SureShell Shotshell Carriers-Mesa Tactical

What others are saying?:  I purchased mine off of Amazon and its average rating is 4.25 stars. With the two 2 star ratings being for faulty packaging on the one and simple preference on the other. Consensus seems strongly positive considering this products two main detractors are for these reasons.  Amazon

Price Point:

I need it now! Availability: If you happen to have a very well stocked local gun store you may be able to pick it up however with Amazon the shipping is free and you will have it in a week. Direct from manufacturer is also an option.

Our Rating:

+ Construction + Included hardware + Simple installation + Rock solid mount + Rock solid shell retention

Score: 8.585 GREAT

My Blog: NJ Gun Blog

Kimber Eclipse Target ll


Kimber Eclipse image

I have had this gun for about 10 years now and its still my gun safe queen!  Recently I have resolved to bring her back out and start using it more often.  After all isn't that why we buy we can enjoy them right?  As soon as I got this Kimber in hand, I decided to put on an extended magwell and Kimber tactical grips.  But that's it! Those were the only mods that I deemed necessary for this beautiful piece of firearm bliss.

OK ... time to get into the meat of the matter.  I have fired approximately 1,500 rounds through this Eclipse.  To be completely honest with you guys, when I first took it to the range, I had some feeding issues with the first 300 rounds.  However after getting it tall broken in, the gun ran flawlessly for the last 10 years.  If you have never held a Kimber, they are extremely tight tolerances with no loose rattling like most other 1911”s.  Everything is worked by hand to ensure maximum accuracy and it is very accurate! My ol’ man can punch an 1”-1 ½” group with this firearm. The Kimber Eclipse has a crisp 4-5lb aluminum match trigger and when you pull the slide to the rear, its very smooth.  In fact, everything about this gun is crisp and smooth. I do have one major qualm with the Kimber …. the black oxide finish seems to wear off too easy, especially on parts like the safety that get a lot of skin contact.  Other than that, the pistol has a solid steel slide and frame that is very well balanced.  The target 2 model comes with a 5” match steel barrel and meprolight adjustable night sights.  Last but not least, the Kimber Eclipse has 30 LPI checkering on the front grip (I love this feature) and come with two 8 round mags.

Firearms Insider Reviews - 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame: Superb detail, accuracy reliability and smooth operation.

Target Market: Serious 1911 fans, competition and law enforcement.

FNB's (features and benefits of this product):

  • 5" match grade barrel and bushing
  • Aluminum match grade 4-5lb trigger
  • Meprolight adjustable night sights
  • Contrasting brushed stainless finish over black infill
  • 30 lpi front strap checkering

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?:  Brushed stainless flats/ black oxide contrast

What others are saying?:  "Kimber 1911's are what 1911's should be"

Price point:

Our Rating:

+ Accurate + Reliable + Beautiful + Superb Quality + Balanced

- Expensive - Break in period - Black finish wear

Score: 8.0 Great80