Fowler Industries Gen 5 Glock Trigger

Written by Zane M.

If you listen to the podcast then you probably are aware that I’m a fan of flat faced triggers in my glocks. You also are probably aware that I think the stock gen5 triggers are much better than previous generations of Glock triggers. So much so that I had no intention of replacing my oem trigger in my gen5 Glock 19.


Then Fowler industries sent me their zero trigger. With low expectations and little enthusiasm I installed the trigger in my g19, as I’m the only reviewer with a gen5 glock apparently. I was pleasantly surprised.

Installation was simple, like all Glock drop in triggers, and took just a few seconds to get it in there. The first thing I did was check that the trigger didn’t compromise safety. After checking the ledge and cruciform engagement (technical terms?) everything appeared to be good so I dropped it and hammered it a few times to see if I could get the trigger to trip. I could not. So it passed test one.


Next up is feel, the trigger feels great and as a fan of flat faces triggers I really like this one. The sides are cut at angels so the trigger feels rounded and is comfortable for a variety of finger placements. Despite popular belief there isn’t a single spot everyone should place their finger on the trigger. While all flat faced triggers work fine when using the pad of your finger, they can be less comfortable with less or more finger on the trigger. Depending on your hand size and reach this could be important.  While it’s hard to convey over text it really feels good.


On to the trigger pull. The trigger is just slightly more smooth than the oem trigger. This is to be expected since they use an oem trigger bar that’s been polished. They recommend using an oem -connector and stock all other parts and springs. I ran the trigger with a few different connectors and I always (like all my other triggers) come back to the stock 5.5lbs connector. You could get the same smoothness but putting several thousands rounds through the gun but you’d still have a plastic curved shoe.

If you want a 1911 like trigger, this isn’t the trigger for you but none of the drop safe options I’ve tried are either. If your looking for an better feel on the trigger, this might be it.



Flat faced aluminum gen 5 trigger


Anyone looking for a better trigger show for glock


  • Provides a better contact surface for the trigger finger

  • Smooths out the trigger travel.

  • Removes unnecessary take up or pre travel without compromising safety.

  • Looks cool(if that matters to you)


  • “Spider-Man edition”

  • Red

  • Blue

  • Green

Website isn’t super easy to navigate, most of these are options I found on other companies’ sites

What others are saying:

They seem to like it but I only found video reviews

Price point:

MSRP - $145.00

I need it now availability:


Fowler Industries

Our Rating:


  • Improved feel

  • Pre-travel removed

  • Smooth


  • Price

Score 8.5 Great


Write here…

XTech Pistol Training Gloves

 XTech Tactical has come out with their Pistol Training Gloves or PTG for short. We talked about these, when they first came out, on Episode 199 of the podcast. These gloves are basically shooting gloves with hook and loop sewn on to the fingers. After the episode, I contacted XTech and they sent me a pair for review.

 The PTG’s can be had in 4 sizes. XS, S, M, and L. They have a sizing chart on the PTG page. My size was a medium, and they actually fit me decently. If you have really large hands and want these, I think you might be out of luck. But for the rest of us, they can be had for $29.95. Which really isn’t a bad price for helping to learn proper shooting form. They are decent as regular shooting gloves also.

 I’ll go a little into what and how these gloves work. First off, they are blue in color, and only blue. But really for what they are for, color doesn’t really matter. Next up, the have an elastic cuff with a hook & loop strap to snug them on your wrist. Now comes the hook & loop on the fingers. It is on all of them except the index finger. On the inside, or where the pads of your fingers are, is a small pad of the soft loop portion of the hook & loop. On the outside of the fingers and thumb, where your second knuckle is, is where the hook portion is sewn onto the gloves. What this does is enable the shooter to wrap the support hand around the shooting hand by connecting the hook & loop pads. Thus teaching where to place the fingers. You might think that it would be hard to release the grip, but it isn’t, it is not very grippy hook & loop. Because they are made to teach a Thumb Forward grip, there are also pads on the thumbs to aid in placing them in the correct place also.

 I have been shooting with these for some time now. They have held up fairly well. I like them because they aren’t as thick and bulky as some shooting gloves. The synthetic leather palms give good feel. The stretchy backing also flexes to give good fit. They have vented fingers, but all gloves are warm to me during the summer. I have had friends try them out also. Most of them could see the benefits of using them for teaching. Some even seemed intrigued. I even had my daughter put them on as I explained what they did, She didn’t have any trouble lining the pads up to get a proper grip.

 There is a decent video on the XTech site discussing the PTG’s. As one can guess, these are a training aid. Because of this, they aren’t for everyone. Plus you need different sizes for different hand sizes, so a trainer may want to buy more than one size.

 I found the Pistol Training Gloves to do what they are said to do. They help teach where to put those fingers. XTech seems to have done a decent job creating them. So if you think they might be something to help yourself or others, go check out Xtech and their PTG’s

Firearms Insider Reviews - 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame:

Gloves to help new pistol shooters with proper finger placement

Target Market:

New pistol shooters and Firearms Trainers

FNBs (Features & Benefits of this product):

  • Designed for “Thumb Forward” grip

  • Promotes Muscle Memory

  • Ambidextrous Design

  • Hook and Loop Fasteners

  • Durable Synthetic Leather

  • Stretchable Polyester

  • Ventilated Fingers

  • Available in different sizes

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?


What others are saying?:

Nothing found

Link to other reviews:

None found

Price point:

MSRP = $29.95

I need it now! Availability:

XTech Tactical

Our Rating:


  • Teaches Thumb Forward grip

  • Comfortable

  • Sizing chart seems to work well

  • Just enough hook & loop to help with grip


  • No XL or XXL sizes

  • May have to buy more than one pair

Score: 7.5 Good



Favorite Link:   AR15 Podcast




Glock 19 Gen 5

 Written by Zane M.

  In case you haven’t heard the worlds most perfect pistol just got an upgrade. That’s right perfection has been perfected. In all seriousness glock has released their gen 5 line of g19 and g17 guns and people seem to have mixed emotions.

  Being a fan of glocks, I was naturally curious and later reading a few write up and internet scuttlebutt I definitely wanted to get my hands on one.  It worked out well because a friend called saying he was getting one and did I want to check it out.

  I drove out to his house and picked up a brand new g19 gen5. “Bring it back sometime next week” he said. I also had an alert from UPS letting me know I had a case of ammo on my doorstep, how convenient.

  The new finish on slide looks very nice, it looks a bit darker and is more subdued. A blacker black if you will, and not as shiny as my gen4 and gen3 glocks. The gun lacks finger grooves, a welcomed change from most people I know, but so does my gen4 thanks to a dremmel. The barrel on the gen5 uses traditional rifling instead of the polygonal rifling glock has previously used. Probably the most notable difference aside from the lack of finger grooves is the ambidextrous slide release/stop. So if you’re wrong handed, glock thought about you. One change I was most interested in checking out was the Flared magwell. I was underwhelmed by it at first glance but it definitely grew on me. Glock is still using those plastic atrocities they call sights but this gun had already had them replaced with some fiber optics. The biggest thing I noticed is still no front cocking serrations. Come on, glock, get with it.

  The gun came to me with one magazine through it but was otherwise brand new. In the box there were three mags and mag loaded tool, Cleaning rod and brush, cable lock and manual. I took the gun to the range as it came to me with a few hundred rounds of ammo.

The trigger is a glock trigger, it seemed a bit smoother than my gen 4 and gen 3 but lighter than the g42 I used to have. The take up did seem bit stiffer but I’ll take that for the seemingly more consistent “push” if you will through the “wall” The gun handled and fired like a glock. The flared magwell did grow on me with every reload. In 300+ rounds of two hand, primary hand and support hand only shooting. I had no malfunctions to speak of aside from three failures to lock back on the last round. These were completely shooter induced and occurred with a 19, 17 and magpul 21 mag. It’s also worth noting this is a problem I have with all glocks because my support hand contacts the slide release.

  Holster compatibility was something I was curious about so I tried the gun in several that I had laying around. The starboard side slide release dragged on two of them, touched one, and worked fine with four. Two of those were home made by yours truly and the other two require the use of a weapon mount light. Overall it seemed to work in many existing holsters and with some quick modifications I don’t see why it wouldn’t work in most all of them.

  Final thoughts: I like it. For an out of the box carry/duty gun, it’s hard to beat save the sights. However, if you’re going to modify or send it off, I’d probably just save the little extra and go gen 4

Firearms Insider Reviews - 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame:

It’s a glock, not much else to say. It’s been upgraded

Target Market:

Law enforcement, security and law abiding citizen looking for a reliable, ambi pistol. And glock fanboys like myself

FNBs (Features & Benefits of this product):

  • glock reliably

  • ambidextrous slide stop

  • flared magwell

  • lack of finger grooves

  • new more durable coating

  • replaceable back straps (not new)

  • traditional rifling

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?


What others are saying?:

Too New

Link to other reviews:

Concealed Nation

Price point:

MSRP = $629.00+

Retail = $559 at Brownells

I need it now! Availability:


Our Rating:


  • Works like a glock

  • flared magwell

  • pleasing to shoot

  • smoother trigger


  • Still no front serrations

  • sights are still terrible (not a big deal to me)

Pros/Cons: You Decide

  • lack of finger grooves

  • ambi slide release

Score: 8.5 Great or slightly better than the gen 4




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.



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.


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.


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.



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.



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


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:


  • 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.


  • 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


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. 


  • 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.


  • 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!

Visit Ryan Michad over at Handgun Radio and the Handgun Radio Facebook Page

Crew Holsters "OL' Classic OWB" Holster


The Crew Custom Holsters OL' Classic OWB is your standard outside the waistband holster.  It is manufactured from some nice heavyweight kydex or similar plastic.  The one I received is for a full size 1911 style pistol.  It arrived in black.  I tried it with 2 different 1911's and it functioned flawlessly.

Crewowb2The design of the holster would make it very useful for everyday carry, IDPA, hunting, or any other thing you might want an outside the waistband holster for.  The belt loops supplied fit my 1.5" belt nicely.  The loops are also kydex, and are very deep, meaning that a really thick belt, or one of the double competition style belts, will fit through the loops.  The loops can also be adjusted up or down on each side.  This way, the holster can be lowered, raised, or adjusted for cant.  Being that it is for a 1911, the inside sheet of kydex came up just to the safety lever.  The outside piece is a little lower to help you get a good grip when drawing.  This model OWB holster also covers the trigger guard completely.  It is also molded around the mag release button so that it can't be hit accidentally.  Some of the owb models have adjustable retention, this one does not.  I didn't find this to be a problem, as the holster retained the firearm nicely.  The draw stroke is also very smooth. Upon reholstering, you do get a good "snap" as the holster locks the gun in place.  I did notice that it took a few draw strokes to break in the holster, as it was very snug when I first received it.

This holster is really nice.  It is available in lots of colors and patterns, for a few extra bucks.  There are also options for weapon mounted lights and lasers.  Various belt clip options are also available, as well as a sweat guard, if one wishes.  The only flaw I found with this particular model was that, with one of my 1911's, the safety would just touch the holster so that the firearm would not go in completely.  I mean by maybe an 1/8".  So I just filed that spot down slightly and it worked great.  I called The Crew Holsters about this and they said I could send it in for them to fix, because it does have a lifetime warranty.  They said they would look at the problem and I doubt that it exists anymore.  If you're in the market for a good kydex style holster, give the Crew a call.


Firearms Insider Reviews - 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame: Outside the Waistband holster

Target Market: IDPA, concealed carriers, hunters

FNBs (Features & Benefits of this product):

  • Adjustable belt loops
  • Available Options
  • Full trigger coverage
  • Good retention

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available? Lots of different colors, patterns and options.

What others are saying?: 

    "I've ordered a few of their iwb holsters and i think i found the last holster company I'm going to deal with, the owner is cool and prices are damn good, and the product is good, speaking of which i need to order a iwb for my sig."

Price point: 

MSRP = $45.00 for black, everything else extra

Retail = $45.00+

I need it now! Availability: The Crew Custom Holsters 

Our Rating: 


  • Good Retention
  • Adjustable Belt loops (height and cant)
  • Firearm availability
  • Color and pattern options
  • Light and Laser options
  • Belt loop options
  • Adjustable retention on some models
  • Completely covers trigger


  • Safety on 1911 hit edge of holster slightly

Score: 8.5+  Grea85t



Chad's Links:

Handgun Radio

Man O' Steel charity fund raiser multi gun challenge

Firing Line Review



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:


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


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

SCORE: 7.5 Good75



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Simon Says Train YouTube

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.


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: 


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


  • 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



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: 


  • 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)


  • 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

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.



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:


  • 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

Comfort Holsters Bentley Comfort Holster Review

Bentley Comfort Holster I really love it when my initial impressions of a product are wrong. When I first received the Bentley Comfort Holster, I thought the unique materials were some sort of gimmick to justify the premium price tag. After carrying with the holster for a few days in a row, I'm happy to say "Boy, I was wrong!" There's an metaphoric expression used to compare the quality of a product to a highly reputable classic car maker... "the Rolls Royce of ___" is what people say. I can venture to say that this holster got its name, because it is "the Bentley of Holsters."

First let me preface by stating that I own several different inside the waistband holsters, and they each have gotten their fair use.  I do have a favorite out of the bunch, that has warped to my body after being worn repeatedly, and feels pretty good now that it's been 'Ryanitized' by my love handles. By the end of the evening, especially if it was a particularly active day, my body is relieved when its time to take that holster off. The air finally gets a chance to wick away sweat that accumulates with unbreathable skin-on-leather contact, even with a layer of fabric in between. Then there's the circular indent left behind. I do not expect the comforting concept of having a concealed defensive pistol to be in itself comfortable to bare, and that has been a mantra in the concealed training world for awhile now. With all the advancements in leather and kydex, we still have to endure some discomfort in order to be secure when using conventional IWB holsters. I'm pleased to have found an alternative that effectively throws that paradigm out the window.

Bentley Comfort Holster

Comfort Holsters claims this is the most comfortable holster in the world. A bold claim indeed, something that every holster manufacturer attempts to boast! The flagship model in Comfort Holsters' product line is called "The Bentley Comfort" holster. The Bentley uses a unique gel layer wrapped in suede material, which pads a full kydex chassis on the hip-facing side. The full chassis of kydex provides maximum retention of the firearm, while protecting the metal's finish from sweat. The gel pad reminds me of high end orthotic insoles in a prescription shoe, which is actually a really good way to compare the beneficial qualities of the material. Gel obviously molds to outside forces, your hip in this case. This eliminates abrasions, chaffing, and putting undue pressure on your body that some conventional IWB holsters can cause. Now wrapping that jelly material in soft suede not only feels pleasant to the touch but allows skin the breathe, which resolves something a leather backed holster design suffers from greatly. The result is an all day comfort that I personally had never really appreciated until it came time to remove the Bentley from my pants at the end of  day one... the relief of pressure and drastic "Aaaaahhh, much better" feeling was missing. Meaning the Bentley and my body were ready for another 9+ hour day of carrying, and that's a feeling I have never experienced with any other holster I've tried.

Bentley Comfort Holster

The Bentley holster has two leather tabs, more like wings, that provide the mounting for two belt clips. Unlike other holsters, the clips are not spread out. The Bentley is smaller more compact design with clips specifically placed asymmetrically for functional purposes. The rear clip is less than an inch from the kydex, with its clip positioned underneath the pistol grip. This, combined with a short, rigid double layer of leather which the manufacturer calls the "Cling Tab," causes a pulling / torque of the holster inward so that the grip follows the contour of your body, instead of remaining parallel to your frame like other holsters. The front/foward tab is a single layer of leather and is longer and mounted to follow the inward taper of the kydex, allowing it to flex and follow the contour of your waistband. This design has two primary intended results: reduce "printing" or broadcasting you are concealing a firearm through an imprint in clothing, and not needing a break-in period for the holster to warp and conform to your body.

Bentley Comfort Holster

From my testing, which included drawing my S&W M&Pc for dry fire practice for a couple weeks, I found that I am pleasantly pleased with the Comfort Holsters Bentley Comfort holster. The marketing hype on the Comfort Holsters website seems overreaching if you've never given it a try, but I can honestly assess that a lot of thought and engineering went into designing and building a better IWB holster. Some personal notes I found during my testing and evaluation are:

  • If you prefer to carry exactly in the 3 o'clock position, the Bentley doesn't feel 'right'. It printed much more for me at this apex of my hip. I found that moving it back to the 4 - 4:30 position was the 'sweet spot' for me. I normally don't carry this far back because more traditional IWB holsters have a wider leather backing, and would cause pinching/discomfort in the kidney area when in the sitting position. The Bentley's smaller profile was almost unnoticeable when sitting at my office desk and driving around town.
  • The rearward clip on the Cling Tab is directly located below the front strap of the grip, and if you adjust the seating depth so your gun sits deeper in your pants, the clearance for your fingers gets really tight. My digits began to wear on the knuckles of the index and middle fingers during drawing practice, and would often interfere with getting a good purchase on the grip frame. I wouldn't say that I have gorilla mits, but if you have fatter booger hooks than I do you will encounter this too. Best to leave the rear clip in its lowest position.
  • The smell of the adhesive that binds the suede/gel panel to the kydex body is very pungent. If it weren't for the instructions addressing this, I would have been concerned for my safety in a tightly spaced environment. No worries, the off gassing dissipated after about 2 days.

Note: If you want a holster made to fit your rail mounted light or laser, just ask Rob. I wish I had a TLR-3 on a S&W M&Pc molded up, but failed to ask.

Firearms Insider Reviews - 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame: This is the most comfortable holster known to man

Target Market: Concealed Carriers looking for the ultimate comfortable hoster for IWB carry

FNBs (Features & Benefits of this product)

  • Gel Cushion
  • Suede Protection
  • Tuckable
  • Adjustment clip position (3 levels for forward clip, 2 for the rear)
  • Rigid & short Cling tab gives extra support to rear of holster, angles grip inward
  • Full Kydex body retention
  • Small Footprint
  • Lifetime Guarantee
  • 6 week buy back warranty
  • Made in the USA
What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?:  Kydex color Black or Desert Tan

What others are saying?: " During a very extensive search for an IWB holster to fit my glock 19 AND mounted Streamlight TLR-1, I ran across Rob Durham. When I first contact Rob he was in the process of moving his shop into the back of one of his local gun shops. This move has enabled him to make holsters for pretty much anything that the shop might carry. After hammering out all the details of what I was looking for Rob was able to put together a mold for my combination and for future use... Instead of leaving a waxed backing on the holster Rob has mated a second layer of leather for added comfort. It does not affect the flexibility of the holster. It doesn't affect the thickness either. This holster is fairly thin. I think I would have liked to see him run a row of stitching In the sculpted track running the entire perimeter of the holster, but we'll see how it holds up in the long run as is. The Holster is set up for adjustable ride height and/or cant... The holster features a sweat guard. As of right now there is not a "combat cut" like cross breed offers. But I have a feeling it will be an added feature in future holsters. It does not effect the draw, but would be a tad more comfortable on first "grab". After playing with the cants I finally settled in on the front clip all the way to the top and the rear clip in the middle position. At the 3 o'clock position it provides a slight cant, and makes the weapon print ALOT less.... is directly on the hip. You'll notice in this position that it "squares off the side." Also noted a bulge around the pocket. This position is NOT okay while seated. The grip and sweat guard tends to push into my side in this position while seated." Firing Line User Review

Price Point:

I need it now! Availability: Readily available at comfortholsters.com

Our Rating: +  No break-in period +-Cling Tab: Shorter, double layered tab pulls pistol grip in to follow body contour + Suede and Gel combo really does provide all day comfort, no sweating or chaffing especially if in sitting positions (at desk or driving) + 6 Week Buy Back guarantee, shows major faith in product / customer satisfaction -  Smaller footprint puts rear clip right under pistol grip and can hinder initial purchase of handle if preferred position adjusted a certain way - My experience with experimenting with different pants / tops was still signs of printing through light clothing due to full kydex body and gel pad. --Strong glue smell upon first 1-2 days of wear - Price is on the higher end of the market, but it is high quality with uniquely comfort not available elsewhere.

Score: 8.0 Great



LaserLyte Reaction Tyme Kit Review

Reaction Tyme KitThe Laserlyte Reaction Tyme Kit is a laser training system that consists of a Universal Pistol Laser Trainer, a Trigger Tyme Compact Training Pistol, and a Reaction Tyme Target. Universal Pistol Laser Trainer:

Reaction Tyme Real

Reaction Tyme GunThe Universal Pistol Laser Trainer is a laser unit that fits slips into the bore of any pistol, from 9mm to .45 cal. This is accomplished by an arbor that screws into the rear of the unit, which expands as you tighten the screw. The front end of the unit is tapered, to keep the laser centered in each caliber. Once installed, the laser will activate whenever the striker or hammer of the pistol falls. It runs on three tiny 377 tablet batteries. The unit comes with three pre-installed and three more for replacement. There is a small plastic disk to keep the batteries separated from the circuit during storage and shipping. Make sure it’s removed before use, or it will not work. The way the laser is activated is that the unit is “listening” for the striker/hammer fall. This means that, if the circuit is complete, during storage, the batteries will run down very quickly. The laser is easily seen indoors, but I believe Laserlyte should offer a green option, for outdoor use. That would allow you to get out to longer ranges, while still having the benefit of not having to spend money on ammo. The manual says that the unit requires at least a two inch barrel, and I confirmed that it would not fit in the standard 1.875" J-frame barrel, without impeding the cylinder rotation. Laserlyte has incorporated a plug that goes on the end of the battery cap that you can flip over and stick it into the battery compartment. This disconnects the circuit, while also keeping everything together. This system could be done a little better, because it is just a rubber plug that can be knocked out, if it’s bouncing around in a bag, or something. I would prefer a threaded cap, to keep it all together.

Reaction Tyme Laser

In my traditionally rifled barrel, the arbor slipped right in when tightened properly. In my Glock, with polygonal rifling, the arbor would grab the rifling, and tighten itself, causing it to flare out even more and get stuck, before it is fully seated. This is easily overcome by making the arbor loose enough to where it just barely engages the rifling, but will tighten up as it is inserted. The laser unit will fit into the bore of a .380, but it was very tight in my Kahr CW 380, so it had to be loosened.

When I first got my kit, the laser unit was faulty. It would activate properly, but it was very dim. I contacted Laserlyte’s customer service, and got a response within an hour. The representative sent me out a new laser, along with a return sticker for the faulty one. She was even kind enough to throw in a 12 pack of replacement batteries. This was about as good of a customer service experience you could get.

Trigger Tyme Compact Training Pistol:

Reaction Tyme Compare

The Trigger Tyme Compact Training Pistol is a completely inert training pistol with a resetting trigger, which means that you don’t have to do any additional actions between each trigger pull. It has a bore that will accept the Universal Laser Trainer. The resetting trigger makes an audible “Click” that is picked up by the laser and activates it. I do not have a trigger pull gauge, so I was not able to actually test it, but it feels a few pounds heavier than my Glock stock trigger. The pistol has basic, black sights on it. They are very similar to the basic Glock sights, just without the white dot and box. The Laserlyte website states that the dimensions are very similar to the Springfield XD-S. The grip is very slim and short. The rear beavertail of the grip has relatively sharp corners, so it can be rather uncomfortable to train with. I decided to file and round the corners to make it a little easier on the web of my hand.

Reaction Tyme Compare 1When I ordered this kit, I did not realize that it came with the compact version of their pistol, so once I tried the compact one out, I ordered their full-size, which is very similar in dimensions to the Glock 19/23. It has the same sight and trigger. It will fit in my Concealment Solutions hybrid holster, but not in the Serpa holster, because the “slide” is a little thicker. The beavertail is not sharp, like the compact version, which is very good, as it’s actually comfortable to use. I would also like some type of false magazine that stores the laser with the pistol, when not in use.

Reaction Tyme Target:

Reaction Tyme Target

The Reaction Tyme Target is an electronic, reactive target that is designed to be used with Laserlyte’s laser trainers. The target area is about three inches square. It has two different modes: Reaction and Normal. The Reaction mode will light the entire target red. You then have a couple of seconds to react, and shoot it, before it turns off. If you successfully hit the target, in the allotted time, it will blink and beep twice, letting you know you hit. The target will continue to light up red at random intervals of three to five seconds, until you switch the target off. In the Normal mode, the target stays unlit, until you hit it with the laser. Each time you hit it, it will light and blink, letting you know you’ve hit the target.

The target runs off of a three AAA batteries. It seems to be very sturdy. It also has a hole in the back, so you can hang it on a screw or nail.

The Reaction Tyme Kit, as a whole, is a very good training aid. I would prefer the option to order it with the Compact or Full-Size pistol. It would also be nice to have a second target included, so you could practice transitioning between each target, but they are offered for sale separately.

If you are in need of a laser training system, this is a very good option. You may even be able to call or email Laserlyte to get them to sell it to you with the full-size pistol. You could buy each component separately, but you save about $60 by buying the kit. I would recommend this kit to any shooter wishing to get some inexpensive trigger time in.

Firearms Insider Reviews - 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame: “One-stop system of entry level laser training” - Laserlyte

Target Market: Pistol shooters looking for a safe, laser training option

FNBs (Features & Benefits of this product):

  • Universal laser unit
  • 9mm - .45 cal
  • Pistol is “Training” blue
  • Red laser
  • Reactive target

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?: All of the items are only available in one color: blue pistol and red laser unit.

What others are saying?: “By practicing with a device that replicates DAO triggers in-general you are gaining/polishing trigger skills that are universal to all pistols with DAO triggers.” – Eric, AmmoLand

Price Point:

I need it now! Availability: You can get the Laserlyte Reaction Tyme Kit at Brownells and Amazon.

Our Rating:

+-Resetting trigger +-Universal Laser +-Reactive target +-Great customer service +-Full-size pistol fits well in my hand

--Compact pistol is a little uncomfortable --No storage compartment for the laser --Laser battery plug is prone coming out, when not in use --Laser should be offered in green, for outdoors use

Score: 8.080

Alien Gear IWB Holster Review

58201418928 Written by Chad Wallace

582014181059I ordered the Alien Gear IWB holster because I liked the price.  The holster is everything I expected it to be and more.  The Alien Gear holster is an Inside The Waistband (IWB) holster of the hybrid variety.  It has a large leather back panel and a kydex shell.  This holster is tuckable and comes with metal belt hooks, an option is available for leather hoops also.  The holster arrives with a bag full of extra hardware, which can be used to vary the amount of tension on the gun.  It varies the tension by adjusting the screws that hold the shell on.  Between the shell and the leather backing are some rubber grommets to do this tension adjustment.  Ride height and cant can also be adjusted by moving the belt loops around.  I ordered the tan leather but black is also available as an option.  The holster is available for a vast selection of pistols and comes in a combat cut only, this means that the grip of the pistol is not backed by leather and therefore it rests against you skin or undershirt.   An option is also available to just purchase the outer shell, or trade your original shell, for a new one if you change firearms.  I experienced the shell swapping, because on my original order they sent my holster system for the wrong firearm.  I contacted them and they sent a new shell out the next day.  This was great, until the new shell came for the same wrong firearm.  It then took 3 weeks to finally get a hold of them to tell them about the new mix up. So 5 weeks after the initial holster arrived I received the correct shell and was able to try the holster out.  I have found the holster to be really comfortable and hides the firearm nicely.  


Firearms Insider Reviews - 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame: Inexpensive quality IWB holster with the option for gun interchangeability.

Target Market: Those wanting a hybrid IWB holster for a decent price.

FNBs  (Features & Benefits of this product):

  • Hybrid Design
  • Price
  • Changeable Shells and/or free shell trades
  • Forever Warranty
  • Adjustable angle
  • Adjustable ride height
  • Adjustable tension
  • Tuckable
  • Extra hardware

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?:

  • Comes in tan or black leather
  • Available for a vast selection of pistols

What others are saying?:  From the AlienGear website:58201418825

  • Great product, great value!
  • Very nice product, my only negative thing its the time that I have to wait since order date until it's ready to ship
  • Great Value

Elsewhere on the web:

  • Just got my Alien Gear holster in today and it is a great holster
  • A decent piece for the price, but it is not a replacement for a higher end hybrid
  • Very nice! Super comfortable!

Link to other reviews:  TexasCHLforum,  YouTube

Price Point:

I need it now! Availability:  Aliengearholster.com but shipping times are about 4wks

Our Rating:

  • Price
  • Comfort
  • Adjustments
  • Extra hardware

  • Customer Service

  • Shipping times (about 4 weeks from order date)

Score: 7.0 Good 70

Chad’s Favorite Link: Northwest Firearms

Next Level Training SIRT Training Pistol Review


img1 By Daniel Strait

There is only thing better than actually going to the range...training before the range :). This is the perfect tool to do just that! It is an interactive laser trainer that has the exact same feel and weight as a Glock 17 (also have a M&P version). With rising ammo prices this product gives you thousands of rounds of training in the convenience of your home!



Firearms Insider Reviews - 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame: The primary benefit is the positive feedback that the pistol gives you and your instructor. Secondary benefit is the added security of it being a replica firearm. You no longer need to worry about mixing your live rounds into your dry fire training. Third benefit is money savings. Fourth benefit is its self-resetting trigger vs. the Laserlyte trainer (charge your slide to activate the laser).


Target Market: Competition Shooter/Law Enforcement/Firearms Instructor

FNBs (Features & Benefits of this product):

  • The biggest feature is in the name SIRT (Self Indicating Resetting Trigger) the ability of the laser activation with each trigger pull. Meaning you no longer have to rack the slide between each trigger pull.

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?: The Next Level Training SIRT Training Pistol is available in red, green, purple, and pink.

What others are saying?: “Referring back to my martial arts training decades ago, our teacher said you must throw a punch or a kick 100 times to learn it, 1000 times to understand it and 10,000 times to master it. Ten thousand rounds of ammunition is a considerable amount and I’m guessing your agency doesn’t budget more than a few hundred rounds per person per year.

With a tool like the SIRT pistol you can practically and realistically conduct one hundred, one thousand, or even ten thousand correct trigger presses over the span of a year. That’s a lot of trigger manipulation that is sure to make the live rounds you fire even more effective and cost-efficient. For more information about the SIRT trainers go to www.nextleveltraining.com” - Paul Markel, Officer.com

Price Point:

I need it now! Availability: Readily available at Next Level Training. 

Our Rating:

+-Safe Gun Handling +-Positive Feedback every trigger pull +-Adjustable Trigger Weight

--Price vs. Laserlyte

Score: 8.0 Great80

Springfield Armory XD Subcompact 9mm Pistol Review

photo By Matthew McMullen

This is one of the best shooting handguns that I have ever owned or shot. Right out of the box, it shot perfectly. It is easy to clean and fires every time flawlessly. It is also perfect for concealed carry. Comes with short magazine 13+1, long Magazine 16+1, holster, speedloader, and magazine holster.

Firearms Insider Reviews - 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame: Fires every time!!!

Target Market: Everyone wanting to conceal carry.

FNBs (Features & Benefits of this product):

  • Shortest concealed-carry polymer pistol
  • The only pistol with a light rail in its class
  • Comes with two magazines
  • 3" steel Melonite barrel
  • Shown with grip-extension magazine

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?: The Springfield Armory XD Subcompact 9mm Pistol is available in black and Bi-Tone(black with stainless slide).

What others are saying?: "With simple lubrication and occasional cleaning, the XD will faultlessly fire tens of thousands of rounds, even in the harshest conditions." - Robert Farago, The Truth About Guns

Price Point:

I need it now! Availability: You can get this pistol from a few retailers, including Bud's Gun Shop.

Our Rating:

+_Very Consistent +_Accurate

Score: 9.0 Amazing90

Springfield Armory Mil-Spec .45 ACP Pistol Review

PB9108L By Mark Smith

Firearms Insider Reviews - 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame: Looks great (Cocobollo grips), feels good in your hand and shoots well.

Target Market: Collector that likes to shoot.

FNBs (Features & Benefits of this product):

  • Comes with 2 mags, mag holster and holster.

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?: The Springfield Armory Mil-Spec .45 ACP Pistol is available in black parkerized and stainless steel.

What others are saying?: “Forged frame, slide and barrel, combat 3-dot sights, high-hand™ grip, beveled magazine well, polished feed ramp & throated barrel, arched mainspring housing, stainless steel barrel, lowered and flared ejection port, angled slide serrations, black and cocobolo hardwood grips, loaded chamber indicator and titanium firing pin.” - AmmoLand.com

Price Point:

I need it now! Availability: You can purchase this pistol from many retailers, including Bud's Gun Shop and Cabelas.

Our Rating: + Great performance + Classic design + Functions well

Score: 9.5 Amazing Amazing


SCCY CPX-2 Pistol Review

cpx2-stainless-prod01 By Joseph Hulsey

After hearing and seeing some reviews, my interest was piqued. I had a client who also had been reviewing the SCCY and came to me to see if I could get one. I could, and actually got two, a CPX2 and CPX1. The customer preferred the CPX1 with the safety, so I kept the non-safety version. The takedown to clean and lube was pretty simple, typical of most modern polymer guns. It did require a bit of prying (not to be done with a fingernail) on the retaining pin to get it out. It wasn't stuck, just recessed in the frame. After a cleaning of the factory lube, I lubed with Froglube and off to shoot.

I started the shooting with some dry firing to familiarize myself with the double action trigger. This trigger is factory set around 9 lbs, as advertised. The trigger felt about in that ballpark, but was smooth throughout the pull. You could easily pull to a break point with little practice and follow through on the trigger well. This gun does have a covered but visible hammer, which won't snag on apparel if carried in a pocket.

The shooting time was enjoyable. I was surprised at how little the recoil was for a small 9mm. I think a little less than a comparable Glock 26. I feed the little nine: ball, hollow-point and lead in semi wadcutter and round nose. Ammo was sized from 115 gr to 147 gr. It ate all I could give it. I will admit a few times maybe 3 out of 150 it didn't go completely into battery. This has seemed to be a common thing until broke in, even mentioned by the customer.

Accuracy? I shot mostly at a distance of 30 feet at B-27 targets and I was again surprised how easy it was to shoot tight groups with such an inexpensive gun. Granted I am no professional but this gun would have no problem putting defensive shots where needed. Even moving and firing was not as bad as expected with a DAO gun.

The feel of the gun is very similar to the aforementioned G26. It is actually slightly smaller and lighter by an ounce or two. It did take me a few minutes to warm up to the grip, but after shooting several hundred rounds I had no problems with it.

All-in-all, I like this gun. As a reasonable entry level gun priced under $300 this thing is something I would not have a problem defending my life with. With 10 rounds of good 9mm hollow points you could walk with confidence and concealed ability.

Firearms Insider Reviews - 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame: Fills a market for an inexpensive compact 9mm semi auto.

Target Market: Best serving concealed carry. With easy concealablility in climates where compact is a benefit.

FNBs (Features & Benefits of this product):

  • 2- 10 round magazines incl.
  • Nice visible sights

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?: The SCCY CPX-2 Pistol is available in black, black/stainless, pink/black, and pink/stainless. You can get each of these colors with an optional manual safety, as well.

What others are saying?: “Thankfully I had brought a couple brand new shooters with me the day I was testing it, and out of all the handguns we fired, this was the one they seemed most interested in buying. They had been thinking about getting a handgun for home defense, and even with the FNS-9 and Glock 17 sitting on the table, they kept asking about the SCCY CPX-2 and wanting to fire it.

There is something to be said about a good looking, cheap gun.” – Nick Leghorn, The Truth About Guns

Hickock45 Review

Price Point:

I need it now! Availability: You can purchase this pistol from many retailers, including Bud's Gun Shop and  Impact Guns.

Our Rating:

+ Consistent trigger ever time + Easy sighting with slightly raised sights

- Magazine reloads can give you a bite, pinched between the mag and mag well on fast reloads

Score: 7.5 Good75

Taurus PT709 “Slim” Pistol Review

IMG_20140315_191701 By Justin Goodell

The Taurus PT709 is one of the first handguns I purchased because it fit my criteria: modestly priced, easily concealable 9mm for self-defense. This firearm has a 3.2" barrel, 6.24" length, 4.52" height, and 1.04" width. It weighs in at 19 oz. with an empty magazine. Capacity is 7+1. Sight system is 3-white-dot with a fixed front sight and adjustable rear sight for both windage and elevation. The magazine release is reversible for all of you wrong-handed people, but the slide stop and manual slide safety are not. It is a polymer/blued carbon steel hybrid, also available with a stainless steel slide. Trigger pull is officially listed as 5-7 lbs., and without the proper equipment, I am unable to quantify the trigger pull.

My wife and I have shot around 600 rounds through this gun so far, and I am pretty impressed with the product. However, she is not. She has fired around 200 of those and had 2 failures to feed and 1 failure to extract. I have fired twice the number of rounds and have had zero stoppages of any kind, but it's a habit of mine to strong-arm my handguns. It's possible that those failures have all been from not maintaining a solid grip.

On both sides of the grip frame, just forward and above the trigger guard on either side are little concave grooves. They are very convenient for a trigger finger rest for the dominant hand and the thumb rest for the off hand. They are perfectly placed for my average-sized man hands and assist in attaining the perfect grip consistently, draw after draw. Simple feature, but one of my favorites.

Another thing I would like to mention is that the white paint started to chip off the sights after about 3 months of daily carry with draw/reholster drills with a hybrid leather and kydex IWB holster a few days per week. I attempted to fill the recesses in with some florescent orange nail polish thanks to my wife, but the nail polish seemed to dry somewhat translucent. I removed the nail polish, applied the brightest white model enamel (like the stuff you paint model cars and airplanes with) I could find, and have not had another problem since.

I carry this daily inside the waistband in a leather/kydex holster by Shepperd Leather and have not had any issues with the gun, the holster, or any combination thereof. No accidentally dropping mags, no hang-ups, no sticking. Speaking of magazines dropping, the release is very low-profile but still easy to use. The shape and placement is perfect. The button only actuates when deliberately pressed, yet it's easy to do so.

Finally, the fun factor. I really enjoy taking this gun to the range! It's fun to shoot, makes easy follow-up shots, and is easy to clean, even at the range. It is my everyday carry pistol for now until I can afford to buy something that I can grow into, not out of.

Firearms Insider Reviews - 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame: This gun is very small and thin, allowing a comfortable carry in the waistband or in a pocket holster.

Target Market: The PT709 is intended for concealed carry.

FNBs (Features & Benefits of this product):

  • Competitive price
  • Manual slide safety if desired
  • Adjustable rear sight

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?: The Taurus PT709 “Slim” is available in black and 2-tone with a stainless steel slide.

What others are saying?: "The PT709 has a bit of a "Glocky" appearance, with a lever in the middle of the trigger and a very Glock-like takedown lever/latch. It is also striker-fired, as is the Glock, but unlike the Glock the PT709 offers a double-action mode which allows you to attempt to fire a round that didn't go bang the first time." - Russ Chastain

Price Point:

I need it now! Availability: You can purchase this pistol from many retailers, including Bud's Gun Shop, Academy and Kentucky Gun Co.

Our Rating:

+ Price + Adjustable sights + Size + Weight + Feel

- 3 failures possibly from sloppy grip

Score: 7.575

Beretta M9 Pistol Review

M9_8x6 By Justin Kepley

A good friend of mine gave me a call one day and asked if I would be interested in taking a CCW class with him. I said "sure, but I do not currently have my own gun, but I can get one for the day of the class".  A week or so before we were scheduled for the CCW class I borrowed a handgun from a family member, we set up some targets to shoot, partly for fun, but to also make sure we could hit what we intended to hit on the day of our class.  That day at our homemade range I was able to shoot a Glock 17, a Smith and Wesson Sigma .40, and a small .22lr revolver.  It had been years since I had shot a gun, but almost instantly I knew I had found my new hobby.

After taking the class and getting my CCW permit, it was time to start shopping for a gun that I would be happy with.  I went into the search with all options open. I started by researching which caliber I would fit my needs the best and when I decided to go with the 9mm I started my homework on the different makes and models of pistols.

I read everything I could get my hands on from varying gun magazines, to online blogs, to a firearm encyclopedia. At that point I had narrowed my search down to just a handful of possibilities. On the polymer side of the coin I was left with the Glock, M&P, and XD and on the non-polymer side I was down to CZ-75B or Beretta 92FS. (It was at this point when a Google search of "Glock, M&P, and XD" lead me to the Gun Guy Radio episodes 20 and 21. I started listening then and have now gone back to listen to all back episodes.)

I borrowed a Glock 17, a CZ-75B, and Beretta 92FS and went to shoot.  After several rounds, I realized that the heavier gun just felt better to me so I knew my choice would be between the Beretta and CZ.  Both felt great in my hands and both shot without any issues. I was still torn until I asked advise from a lifelong friend who has been a member of our military for nearly 20 years, he said "Beretta is a great gun, just heavy for a 9, if you don't mind the weight you will not be disappointed". He also mentioned the M9, stating it was the same as the 92FS except for the military markings and sights.

I think I drove my wife crazy with all of the YouTube videos comparing different guns, most notably Hickok45, or constantly listening to the Firearms Radio Network on my iPhone. I can honestly say that the gun was worth all of the time and research I put into it, I have taught wife and child how to safely handle and shoot the Beretta.  And to this point I have not had a single failure to feed, stovepipe, Hang fire, or any other malfunctions.  All in all if you are looking for a solid gun for home protection I would highly recommend the Beretta 92FS/M9 platform.

Firearms Insider Reviews - 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame: Home Defense,Target/Range shooting, Military/Law Enforcement, Collection (military history)

Target Market: Military, possibly Law Enforcement, Collector.

FNBs (Features & Benefits of this product):

  • Reliability,
  • Ease of Field Strip,
  • Durability,
  • Weight helps with staying on target.
  • Dot-and-Post site system.
  • Safety/De-cocker

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?: The Beretta M9 Pistol is only available in black but the 92(its “civilian” variant) is available in various configurations, even .40 cal.

What others are saying?: “Great performance on the range. This is a man's pistol. A true warrior that replaced the 45 ACP 1911 service pistol. The Beretta M9 (or 92FS) is the most tested pistol since the M1911-A1. Used by the U.S. Military and thousands of police officers. Beretta 92 pistols with over 75,000 rounds have been reported. This solid designed pistol is what replaced so many police revolvers. Nothing shoots better than a well used Beretta 92FS. Allow about 300 rounds for break-in. Good long range pistol. I can hit the 50 yard gong over and over again. Easy to find magazines and holsters for this popular gun. The Italian made ones are tight! See the new 92-A1 with 1913 Picatinny rail.” -  best9mm.com

Price Point:

I need it now! Availability: This pistol is available from many retailers, including Bud's Gun Shop and Impact Guns.

Our Rating:

+ Ergonomics + Balanced

- Too large for concealed carry

Score: 8.585




Image via m700, The Firing Line

Sig Sauer 1911-22 Pistol Review


By Bradley Johnson

I know what you're thinking; "Why would I want a 1911 that shoots .22?" Well, the answer is simple, because it's a blast!

This Sig Sauer (formerly GSG) 1911-22 is a full size 1911. The operation, and ergonomics are identical to a Colt M1911A1 pistol. In fact, many parts are interchangeable with a standard 1911-45. However, unlike the M1911A1, ammo doesn't cost an arm and a leg. It's this very reason that many people opt to supplement their training with a .22LR.

12724119843_8cd4ffb844_bIt comes in a decent hard shell, foam lined case. Included in the case are Allen keys (needed for takedown), 2 magazines, a pistol lock, a replacement guide rod buffer disc, a chamber brush, and 2 front sight posts(2 sizes).

One of the really cool additional features of this (well, not this one, because I reside in California) pistol is that the barrel is threaded by the factory. Unfortunately, the cap on my pistol is fixed due to my state of residence.

Take down is very similar to a standard 1911. However, there are additional pins that require the use of an Allen key. I was originally bothered by this, but it's not a deal breaker.

The pistol is made of some type of alloy, and as such cannot be finished with a traditional hot blue. I suppose this was done to keep the cost down. The finish is not great. It seems like some type of paint, and it scratched/wears easily if you're not careful. It is my biggest complaint about the pistol. Another area of concern are the sights. They're bright, and it's easy to get a good sight picture, but they're made of plastic! Perhaps this is why they supply a replacement front sight in the kit.


At the range, this pistol performed beautifully. I used the12725304505_5272d87637_b recommended CCI Mini Mag for the break-in period, and did not have a single misfeed, or failure to eject. Since the break-in period, I have fed several other brands of ammo thru it without any problems. Considering the price point, I feel that the accuracy of this pistol is excellent. The wood grips feel pretty good in my hands, and if they're not your cup of tea then just replace them with your favorite 1911 grips. Overall, I am very pleased with this purchase.

 Firearms Insider Reviews - 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame: Full size 1911. Same ergonomics and manual of arms as a Colt M1911A1 with a low Price point.

Target Market: I think this pistol will appeal to anyone looking to have some fun at the range. Additionally, it is a great trainer companion to people who already own a 1911-45.

FNBs (Features & Benefits of this product):

  • 2 Magazines included
  •  Replacement sight, and taller sight post to adjust for elevation
  •  Nearly identical to a M1911A1, but at a lower cost than the competitors (1911-22 competitors)
  •  Skeletonized hammer and trigger

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?: The Sig Sauer 1911-22 Pistol is available in black, OD green, flat dark earth, and camo.

What others are saying?: "The last ten shots were fired as fast as I could pull the trigger just looking to see how the pistol cycled without worrying much about accuracy. To my surprise it was flawless and I can tell it will burn up ammo if you let it!" - Tallgrass, MarlinOwners.com

Price Point:

I need it now! Availability: This pistol is available from many retailers, including Cabelas and Bud's Gun Shop

Our Rating:

+ Accurate + Reliable + 2 Magazines

- Finish - Plastic Sights

Score: 7.5 75