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Good Stuff From Other Blogs

LMS Defense – Dear Pistol Log…

The keys to healthy living are living a balanced life, making sure you take in adequate servings of sunlight, water, carbs, protein, healthy fats, and pistol training…

Kit Up – Army Could Be Open to PMAG Buys

The Magpul-designed PMAG is very popular among Joes and Grunts in the Box. With its high-impact resistant plastic construction, textured grip and MagLevel window for round count verification, the PMAG is a versatile alternative to the standard-issue mag — which as you all know had some troubles before the Army’s redesign…

Good Stuff From Other Blogs

Soldier Systems – Vltor Drops Magpul Suit

Vltor Weapons Systems has announced that they have reached an amicable agreement with Magpul…

Death Valley Magazine – The FN FAL – My Battle Rifle of Choice

There is no golden conex full of high speed low drag toys for most contractors working the mean streets of Baghdad or taking on the Mountain Apes in the crags of some Hindu Kush type shithole, but there are gems out there if you look hard enough. The FN FAL is just such a gem given you are lucky enough to score one in your AO…

Diamondback Tactical Short Open Top M4/M16 Magazine Pouch

I have been using Diamondback Tactical’s (DBT) Short Open Top M4/M16 Magazine Pouches for almost 2 years. They are sold under DBT’s Battlelab tactical nylon brand. I have used both the MOLLE version and the belt mounted versions. Both are excellent products at a very reasonable price (about $16 per pouch).

 

 

PMAGs work very well with this pouch. Click for a larger view.

 

These work great on a MOLLE belt which is where I use mine most of the time. They will also work on chest rigs and plate carriers. The strength of this pouch is the speed at which it presents the magazine. It is purposely cut short to allow a full grip on the magazine which promotes speedy, fumble-free reloads.

 

This is the MOLLE version. Click for a larger view.

 

The pouch itself is very simple. It is essentially just a an open top “box” made from 1000D Cordura nylon. The magazine is retained two ways (other than gravity). There is a shock cord  retainer strap that loops over the magazine to keep it in place. The pouch is also lined with a textured rubber material that provides friction so that the mags actually stay in place pretty well without the shock cord retainer. This liner also serves as a wear resistant layer that protects the already wear resistant nylon.

 

 

Note the interior rubber lining. Click for a larger view.

 

I have found these to be very versatile. I use them primarily with 30 round AR mags. I have found that they fit with USGI, PMAGs, ARC, and Lancer magazines. I have also found that they work very well with my favorite AK magazines, the 20 round Hungarian Tanker Mags. In fact, these are my favorite pouches that I have ever used for these Hungarian Tanker Mags.

 

 

Hungarian Tanker Mags fit perfectly. Click for a larger view.

 

These pouches offer reasonable retention without the bungee retainer in place. If you turn the pouch upside down and shake it when it is holding a loaded mag, the mag will fall out readily without the retainer. However, in 2 years and countless drills of all types, I have yet to loose a mag out of one these pouches with or without the retainer. The rubber lining is sufficient to keeps the mags in place unless you are upside down.

I am currently using these as my primary mag pouches on my belt rigs. They serve that purpose very well. They offer the kind of speed that you need to really leverage the advantages of reloading from the belt. In a training situation where I am expected to bring more ammo to the line (I don’t recommend more than 2 or 3 primary mags on your belt), I simply feed these pouches from a chest rig so I can reinforce going to the belt for my reload.

These are great pouches that would work well on a belt rig or as a speed reload pouch on a plate carrier. This Regular Guy recommends them highly.

Update: I recently ordered three more of these pouches and found that the new ones seem a bit tighter which is welcome. They still work well with AK mags but seem to have a bit more grip on my AR mags.

 

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Trijicon, Please Make This Optic!

Trijicon, you have the technology, ability, and experience to make a great multi-purpose optic for a fighting rifle. All you have to do is combine technology from two of your current offerings.

The ACOG is an amazing optic. It has some of the best designed reticle options on the market today. The way the ranging/BDC (bullet drop compensation) system works is nearly perfect. The biggest thing holding it back is the fixed magnification which slows target acquisition at shorter engagement distances. Yes, even with the BAC (Bindon Aiming Concept), it is still slower than a true 1X or non-magnified optic.

The TR24 Accupoint offers the ability to adjust magnification from true 1X up to 4X. It has glass that is similar in quality and clarity to that of the ACOG which is excellent. It also has the very handy adjustable fiber optic cover to adjust the amount of the light that reaches the reticle on sunny days.

Neither of the optics are reliant on batteries for illumination. This is a strong point on most Trijicon products.

I would be in line for one (or maybe 5) tomorrow if Trijicon were to combine these two optics into an optic that was essentially an 1-4x Accupoint with ACOG like reticle and BDC.

The reticle could be a simple cross hair with a larger circle around the intersection. The circle would serve to draw the eye. If this reticle were to be placed in the first focal plane (FFP), it would appear as a smallish dot when the optic was on 1X which would be advantageous for faster acquisition at shorter distances. The crosshairs would be more usable for precision at longer distances on 4X when the reticle appears larger. Typically, FFP reticles are used to make ranging/BDC systems work at all magnifications. However, I really only suggest the FFP reticle for the reticle scaling reasons listed above. A reticle like the circle-dot, already in use in the ACOG, might also work but it would give up some precision to a reticle with crosshairs.

Add the usual ACOG ranging/BDC hash marks on the bottom stadia line of the reticle and watch this optic fly off the shelves. The simplicity of this ranging/BDC system can not be beat. I would personally like to see it set for a 50/200 yards zero but the standard ACOG 100 yard zero would be fine as well.

Recap:

  • 1-4X with true 1x on the low end (while you are at it, a 1.5-6x might be nice too)
  • First focal plane crosshair/circle reticle
  • ACOG ranging/BDC
  • TR24 Accupoint form factor (covered finger adjustable knobs, fiber optic cover, etc)

Trijicon, if you are listening, please make this optic!

Drop Leg Holsters – Think Before You Use

A lot of people wiser and more knowledgeable than me say things like “Mission drives the gear.” The original purpose of drop leg holsters is to lower the bulk of the handgun to clear an armored vest/plate carrier. They are also handy when you need to clear the hip belt of a back pack. I have also heard that some people prefer them when wearing a repelling harness.  Lately, they have become somewhat of a fashion statement.

They are everywhere and it seems no one’s cool-guy-kit is complete without them. Many users have lost sight of the drop leg holster’s real purpose. Fashion, rather than mission, is driving the gear. As a result, we often see these holsters being used in the worst ways possible.

Need Versus Want

The first thing you should do when you are considering purchasing a drop leg holster is think about whether you actually have a need for one. Do you need to clear armor? Do you need to clear a hip belt? Are you wearing a repelling harness? If not, you may want to consider a more traditional belt holster. Why would you want to extend your draw stroke or add weight to your legs when your hips are much better at bearing weight? Make sure you really need a drop leg holster or at least are being honest about why you want one.

Higher is Better

Letting the holster ride too low is probably the biggest mistake I see among drop leg holster users. The range is full of people whose holsters are down on their knee. There are 3 big reasons to keep your holster as high as the holster will allow. You will probably even need to modify the holster to allow it to ride high enough. Remember, the holster needs only to ride low enough to clear the armor/hip belt/harness – no lower.

First, holsters that ride too low place you at a mechanical disadvantage. Think for a second about a baseball glued to a yard stick. You are holding the yard stick at the end marked 1 inch. The baseball is glued to the 36 inch mark. Swing the yard stick and think about how difficult it would be to stop the yard stick and baseball quickly. Now think of the same thing, except now the baseball is glued to the 8 inch marker. How much easier is it to stop the yard stick and baseball quickly now? It is much easier.

When the weight is closer to the pivot point of your leg (closer to the hip) your leg will be able to bear the weight better and move with less effort. The closer the holster gets to your foot, the more you will notice it fighting the movement of your leg and the more it will flop around.

Second, holsters that ride too low elongate your draw stroke. Think for a moment. You are going to increase the distance that your hand must travel to retrieve your handgun and to bring the handgun to eye level. You are going to make your draw stroke slower and less efficient. Is it possible that a “tactical” accessory can actually make you less “tactical” (what ever that means)? Yes!

Third, holsters that ride too low are less like how you tend to carry a handgun when you aren’t playing dress up. Why would you want to throw away all of those practiced draw strokes that you do in your normal concealed carry gear (at least I hope you are practicing)? It makes good sense to have your drop leg (if you need one) mirror your everyday gear as much as possible.

If your holster doesn’t let the handgun ride as high as you would like modify it. Cut stuff, trim pieces off, remove straps, and fix it. If you can’t modify it – replace it with one that works. See Kyle Defoor’s blog post, Safariland Secrets and this thread on M4Carbine.net for some tips on modifying the Safariland 6004. The pictures at these two links will also give you an idea of how high the holster should rid. I like mine so that the highest part of the grip is not quite as high as my belt line. This is more than enough drop to clear my plate carrier and enough to clear my pack’s hip belt.

Watch this blog for an upcoming article on building a versatile holster kit that allows for “battle belt” carry and proper drop leg use. This may also be useful to those who want to modify what they already have.

Tighten Up

The other mistake I see is people with loose leg straps. If the leg strap on your drop leg holster is loose you are inviting problems. Your holster will wobble as you move which can be annoying. More importantly, it can impede your draw. The holster will try to come with the gun as you draw and cause binding in some security holsters (the gun must be drawn almost exactly straight up and out).  When the gun binds it is essentially wedged in place and you may have to re-start your draw or continue to tug it out.

Many drop leg holster leg straps have a short elastic section sewn into the strap. This is there for good reason. It is there so you can really tighten the strap down but still have enough flexibility to buckle the strap and be able to flex with your leg. It doesn’t have to be tourniquet tight but the strap should not be hanging loose on your leg.

Note: Notice I said strap, singular, in that last sentence. If you holster is riding where it should be, there likely will not be room for two leg straps. If you see a holster with 2 leg straps, that is your first clue that it isn’t riding high enough.

Recap

  • Determine whether you need or want a drop leg holster based on your mission/the actual purpose of a drop leg holster. If you must run one…
  • Make sure that it rides high enough. If it does not, modify or replace it.
  • Make sure that you adjust it so that is tight on your leg.

If you stop and think for a minute you may not need a drop leg holster and if you do, at least you will know how to use it more efficiently.

Review: Slip 2000 EWL

This is really good stuff!

I have spent a year, as of this month, with Slip 2000 EWL. I am very pleased with the performance offered by this lubricant. I have used it in Glocks, AR-15s, AK-47s (yes, they do need to be lubed), a Ruger 10/22, and even to slick up flashlight tailcap threads. It has really performed beyond my expectations. It can be difficult to quantify the performance of a weapon lube but I have noticed a few things that should be testable and repeatable that I can share.

  1. Slip 2000 EWL does not evaporate nearly as quickly as Breakfree CLP. When I received my first order, I degreased two AR-15s. I lubed one with Slip 2000 and one with Breakfree CLP. The one with Breakfree looked mostly dry after 3 days while the one with Slip 2000 still had a sheen like it was wet.
  2. Slip 2000 EWL does not run as readily as Breakfree CLP. This is obvious. This makes Slip 2000 EWL more suitable to applications like lubing the Glock that I carry (though I prefer a light grease). It does not run immediately out of the gun all over me and my holster.

The thing that I am not sure I can repeat or prove is that the Slip 2000 EWL makes new guns feel smoother, faster than other lubes. My DDM4 really seemed to slick up after it’s first range trip with this lube. It could be my imagination but others have relayed similar testimonials.

If you run an AR you need a high quality, reliable lubricant. Slip 2000 EWL would be a great choice.

Daniel Defense Lightweight DDM4v2 Now Available

Daniel Defense continues to expand on their excellent DDM4 line with the Lightweight DDM4v2. It features a lightweight profile barrel and a 7″ Omega X rail. I can’t say enough good things about the DDM4 upper that I own.

New BCM Uppers in Stock – 14.5" Mid-Length and 16" Lightweight Mid-Length

Bravo Company USA (BCM) has two new upper configurations in stock. BCM makes some of the finest uppers on the market.

Click here for the 14.5″ Mid-Length

Click here for the Light Weight Profile 16″ Mid-Length

If you are familiar with BCM, you know that these uppers often sell out quickly. Act now!

Preview: Troy Battle Ax Stock

The stock you see in the above picture is the upcoming Troy Industries Battle Ax Stock. It may look a bit strange but it is was obviously designed for function, not form. It has some extremely fresh and innovative features that really set the Battle Ax apart from other stock systems on the market.

The most interesting feature to me is the storage. Even though this stock is very compact, it boasts a ton of storage space. The good folks over at Spartan Cops have confirmed that there is enough storage space to keep blowout kit items on board! These items would add very little weight. You would never have an excuse not to have life saving first aid items on your person again. The items you could carry are not limited to first aid kits. A cleaning kit, or at least some lube, would be another good choice.

Other features include a metal butt plate which should make this stock quite durable and provide some weight at the rear of the gun which many shooters like. There are QD sling swivel sockets in three locations. The length adjustment latch is low profile and located on the underside of the stock. The latch can be seen in the these pictures taken by Stickman in a post at GearScout. Shooters will also appreciate the broad, comfortable cheek weld. The “clubfoot” shape looks like it would work well as a hand hold when shooting from a bipod.

The Troy Battle Ax Stock is unique in looks and in features. It is on my wish-list.

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