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Author Archive | Matt

Review: DuckBill Tactical Grip for the AR-15

The A2 grip that comes standard with most AR-15s is functional but has some well known shortcomings. These shortcomings are the reason that it is usually replaced and discarded not long after someone purchases an AR-15. The DuckBill Tactical Grip takes the best of the A2 grip and adds a few improvements that address the shortcomings of the A2 grip.

The most glaring problem with the A2 grip is that is leaves a gap between the trigger guard retention “ears”. This gap wears on the knuckle of your middle finger and by the end of a day on the range, it can often leave a blister. The DuckBill Tactical Grip has a rounded projection that extends to cover this gap (I assume this is the “duckbill” that gives this grip its name). It allows you to drive your hand high into the grip without tearing your knuckle apart on the trigger guard gap. It is a very simple solution that is very comfortable.

The standard A2 grip has a rest or bump on the front strap that sits between the middle finger and ring finger of the user. This finger shelf does nothing but get in the way for me. It prevents the hand from riding as high as possible on the grip. The DuckBill Tactical Grip does away with it.

Some users find the A2 grip to be too short. They end up gripping the A2 with their little finger wrapped over the flare at the bottom of the grip. The DuckBill Tactical Grip adds some extra length which should correct the length issues for most users. It is long enough that I have about a 1/4″ of usable space sticking out below my hand so those with larger hands should have plenty of surface to grip.

Like the A2 grip, the DuckBill Tactical grip has checkering on the sides and vertical grooves on the back to enhance grip. However, the DuckBill also has a very fine pebbled texture applied to the front strap. This is one of my favorite things about the grip. The pebbling adds a surprising amount of extra grip without being hard on the hands at all.

If you are a user who appreciates the form factor and shorter trigger reach of the A1 or A2 grip, you will love this grip. I really like the simplicity of it. It is very comfortable to use. I can drive my hand very high on it and the extra grip texture is very well executed.

The DuckBill Tactical Grip is available in black and OD green. Check it out the DuckBill Tactical Grip website.

These grips were provided free of charge for review.

Hornaday 7.62×39 123 Grain SST

Finding quality self defense ammo for an AK-47 can be difficult. The vast majority of the 7.62×39 ammunition available to shooters in the USA is imported ammo of questionable quality. Thankfully, Hornady is offering a steel cased 123 grain 7.62×39 load that features their excellent SST bullet.

The SST bullet utilized by this load offers more than adequate penetration and expands readily thanks to its polymer tip. The round is probably capable of better accuracy than most AK-47 rifles so accuracy will not be a concern. This load has a published velocity of 2350 FPS which is pretty close to the standard Russian M43 load. Everything points to this being a very effective choice for those who are looking for defensive ammo for their AK.

Check out the Hornaday 7.62×39 123 Grain SST on the Hornaday website.

Giveaway Time!

Battle Arms Development has provided me with several patches to giveaway to readers of Jerking the Trigger. It is easy and free to enter. You can learn more and enter the contest by clicking HERE to go to the contest page.

Good luck!

Ruger 10/22 MOLLE Magazine Pouch from Retro-Tactical

I have been looking for something like this Ruger 10/22 MOLLE Magazine Pouch from Retro-Tactical for years. I often lash my 10/22 to my backpack when I go camping or hiking. It would be very convenient to be able to carry a couple of spare magazines for the 10/22 in an easy to access pouch.

In the past, I used a belt mounted speed-loader pouch to carry the magazines but carrying magazines on my belt interferes with the waist belt of a backpack. Now, with this pouch from Retro-Tactical, users will have the option of mounting the pouch to the MOLLE waist belt or on other surface of the pack with MOLLE webbing.

Unique pouches like this are one of the biggest reasons I like to patronize custom gear makers. A 10-22 magazine pouch might be too much of a niche product for a large gear maker to undertake, but a more nimble, smaller custom maker can serve these niche markets. There is also tremendous value in being able to communicate directly with the person making your gear. Before you buy from the big guy, consider purchasing from one of the smaller and tremendously talented custom gear makers.

Check out the 10/22 Magazine pouch at Retro-Tactical.com.

Customize a Benchmade Griptilian

The Benchmade Griptilian is a modern classic. Its rock solid lock, hand filling ergonomics, light weight, durability, and reasonable price have made it a very popular choice among many knife users.

The Griptilian has been offered in many configurations over the years but now Benchmade is letting you decide exactly how you want your Griptilian made. Benchmade’s new “Customize a Griptilian” page lets you choose everything from scale color to blade steel. You can even add custom laser engraved text and images.

I would like to see more knife manufacturers offer this type of service.

Customize your own Griptilian at the Benchmade website.

Magpul iPhone Cases Shipping Now

Magpul showed their iPhone Field Case for the iPhone 3 and 3GS at SHOT Show 2010. It generated a lot of buzz but, due to some concerns with durability, the release of the iPhone Field Case was delayed.

Now, nearly a year later, the iPhone Field Cases are finally shipping from Magpul. They will be made from the same material that the original Magpul magazine loops are made from which should make them very durable. The iPhone field case is available in a variety of colors for both the iPhone 3, 3GS, and a new design for the iPhone 4.

ESEE-3 Folder Prototype and Laser Strike News

Jeff Randall at ESEE Knives let the cat out of the bag on their new folding knife design. It is a prototype of a folding version of the venerable ESEE-3. The prototype likely won’t change much when it goes into production but there may still be some changes.

The prototypes blade is made from 5/32″ thick D2 steel and is about 3 1/2″ long.The steel for the final product has not been decided yet. The blade will lock up on a monstrous frame lock. There will also be a G10 slab on the non-lock side for grip.

These two folder prototypes will be in the ESEE booth at the upcoming SHOT Show along with another ESEE prototype – the Laser Strike. The Laser Strike was an early Randall Adventure Training design that was made by TOPS Knives. The Laser Strike was a medium survival knife (5″ blade) that had a very unique fire drill divot milled into the micarta handles. The original Laser Strike knives are becoming very hard to find so many people are looking forward to this reissue. Hopefully, there will be pictures of the new Laser Strike after the SHOT Show.

Giveaway: Battle Arms Development Patches

Battle Arms Development, makers of the truly excellent BAD-ASS and BAD-ASS-ST, sent me a stash of patches to give away to some lucky Jerking the Trigger readers. I have 3 of the earlier style with the M14 art on them and 3 of the new round style with waving flag art. All of the patches have a Multicam color scheme. Since I have 6 patches to giveaway… there will be 6 winners!

To Enter:

  1. “Like” Jerking the Trigger on Facebook.
  2. “Like” Battle Arms Development on Facebook.
  3. Comment on this post with a number between 1 and 2000.


The giveaway will be open until 8PM (EST) Friday, January 28th. Please follow the instructions carefully. Incomplete entries will be discarded. Please use a valid email address when you leave a comment so I can notify you. If the same number is chosen twice, the first person who posted the number will win.

Thank you Battle Arms Development for providing the patches for this giveaway!

Review: Paul’s Sap from Andy’s Leather

I recently reviewed a great classic leather sap from Andy’s Leather. That sap was similar to most saps in that it consisted of a weighted leather pouch on the end of a flexible handle. Saps have been made this way for years. However, the sap that I will be reviewing today is a departure from tradition.

The Same but Different

The “Paul’s Sap” model from Andy’s Leather looks like any other sap at first glance. In fact, no amount of visual inspection would lead you to believe that the Paul’s Sap is anything other than a traditional sap. That all changes when you pick it up. Once the Paul’s Sap is in hand you immediately notice what sets it apart – a thick steel rod inside the handle. This steel rod makes the Paul’s Sap completely inflexible at the handle. This is no ordinary sap. It is a blurring of the line between sap and straight baton, and it is devastating in trained hands.


Andy, of Andy’s Leather, is a police officer and also a baton instructor. Paul’s Sap is the result of Andy’s experience as a baton instructor with input from tactical trainer, Paul Gomez. The goal was to create a traditional looking sap that could be seamlessly worked into someone’s existing straight baton techniques. The rigid steel rod in the Paul’s Sap handle allows it to work with the same strikes and techniques that can be used with a straight baton. This reduces the amount of impact weapon specific training that is necessary because the same training translates from stick to sap.


The steel rod is hammered into the ball of lead shot that is in the weighted end of the Paul’s Sap. Then it is stitched inside the leather exterior of the sap. The stitching is evenly spaced, straight, and clean. Andy stitches these saps while they are still wet with the leather cement so that the cement is drawn through the seams with the thread which he says creates a stronger bond between the layers of the leather.

The Paul’s Sap model that I have to review is actually an example of a new option that Andy will be offering his customers. It is made from durable leather in a saddle tan color that, while durable, has a much more utilitarian appearance than Andy’s typical richly dyed bridle leather saps. This will serve as a lower cost option for those who need a durable, hand-crafted tool but have to work within a smaller budget.

In use

The Paul’s Sap is really a joy to work with. It allows you to deliver a strike no matter how it is indexed in your hand because the stiffening effect of the steel rod makes every surface a striking surface. When it is dark enough that you can’t see your hand in front of your face, it is comforting to know that you have a tool that doesn’t require the perfect grip to operate.

All of the typical sap techniques work with the Paul’s Sap however it can also be used deliver strikes and jabs. Hammer fist strikes are particularly painful and easy to deliver with the Paul’s Sap. Simple thrusts are one of the easiest techniques you can use with the Paul’s Sap. A sharp thrust that comes straight out from the user’s body and connects with the ribs, collar bone, or chin is very effective and difficult to block. A thrust with normal sap would cause the sap to fold and flex which would make the thrust less effective. The Paul’s Sap is rigid enough to stand up to these techniques.

The lanyard strap on this particular sample runs from the top of the sap to the bottom. This type of lanyard provides retention without having to take the time to wrap it around the user’s wrist. The user simply grabs the sap through the lanyard. The lanyard passes over the back of the hand, providing a measure of retention. It even provides some retention in the event that you grab the sap the wrong way with the strap going over your fingers.


The Paul’s Sap from Andy’s Leather is definitely unique. The steel shank in the handle makes it feel like an entirely different tool but very familiar at the same time. Those who have trained with a sap, a straight baton, or both, will feel right at home. The ability to deliver strikes and jabs regardless of how the Paul’s Sap is being held make this a potent and more fool-proof self-defense tool. Whether you choose a utilitarian finish like this sample or a Paul’s Sap with all the richest options, you will be investing in a tool that you will be able to pass on to your children.

Andy’s Leather is a full custom shop so you can contact him at www.Shotist.com or www.AndysLeather.com in order to discuss all the options for your very own Paul’s Sap.

As with any other weapon, you should seek professional training in order to use the weapon safely and efficiently. I always recommend George Matheis of Modern Combative Systems for impact weapon training.

New 1″ Light Mount-N-Slot from Impact Weapons Components

IWC continues their breakneck new product introduction pace. Their latest creation is a Mount-N-Slot that allows users to attach a 1″ diameter flashlight (Surefire G2, G2X, 6P, etc) directly to round free float handguards like the Troy Extreme, Troy VTAC, JP VTAC, and any round handguard with a 1.75″ or 2.0″ outside diameter. The mount only weighs 8/10ths of an ounce and it holds the light much closer to the hand guard than other systems that require a flashlight ring and a separately attached rail. This looks like another winner from IWC.

The Impact Weapons Components website has all the details.

Remember to use the coupon code “triggerjerk” at checkout to receive 5% discount at IWC.

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