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Review: TacPack July 2017

The July 2017 TacPack has arrived at JTT HQ. I’m just going to say this up front. This is the best one yet. It is full from top to bottom and front to back with stuff I will use. Let’s look inside.

Hopefully you are familiar with the concept of TacPack by now. If not, you can read the reviews of the previous TacPacks for some background on this subscription box.

BreakThrough Clean Kit – I don’t really spend a lot of time cleaning guns but everyone has to grudgingly clean once in a while (I’ll never understand you weirdos who like cleaning guns). If you have a gun, you can use this. It comes with solvent, oil, 2 packets of grease, a doubled ended nylon AP brush, and a microfiber towel (which will change your life if you haven’t used one before). I’ve generally been happy with BreakThrough clean products and I especially like that they are pretty much odorless. This is a useful addition.

EZ Accuracy Gas Block Dimple Tool – Most AR-15 manufacturers offer low profile gas blocks as an option but the majority of them still don’t dimple the barrel as a reference for gas block alignment. This product solves that problem. You back out one screw in your gas block and replace it with the special hollow screw provided in this kit which allows you to center punch the spot to be dimpled with the included punch. The hollow screw then acts as a guide for a 1/8″ drill bit so you can quickly and easily dimple your barrel to ensure that the gas block goes back on in the exact same place should you ever need to remove it. You won’t use this every day but you’ll be glad you have it.

Fusion Climbing Runner/Sling and Locking Carabiner – The hits keep coming with this box! I don’t climb but everyone knows you can use a carabiner in about a million ways. I use them all the time in rigging for all the wood cutting I do. The included steel screw gate carabiner will be put to use right away. If you don’t climb, you may be less familiar with runners (or some people call them slings). They are basically really strong loops used for all kinds of things in climbing. I use them to girth hitch things like snatch blocks/pulleys to trees for redirecting pulls with the come-along winch I use when wood cutting. You can find all kinds of uses for items like these from tying into your tree stand to hanging a bear bag on your next overnighter.

5.11 Tactical Wharn Knife – The 5.11 Tactical value knives are actually solid little knives for the price. Knife nerds won’t get off on the AUS 8 blade steel but knife users know it as a fine grained steel that takes a refined edge easily. The ergonomics on this Mike Vellkamp design will take you by surprise. The blade moves VERY smoothly and it locks up well. This is probably the best knife to find its way into a TacPack yet.

MOAB Patch – And you thought MOAB stood for Mother of All Bombs… Nah. It’s Mother of All Bottlerockets!

I rate these boxes on the basis of whether or not I will actually use the included items. With that in mind, this is easily the best box to date. Everyone reading this right now needs gun cleaning items. Even if you don’t know it yet, carabiners and runners/slings are really handy. You can easily find room in a kit for a knife like this and I never would have known about the EZ Accuracy GBDT if it weren’t for TacPack. It is boxes like these that keep me talking about TacPack.

If you want to try TacPack, you can check them out at TacPack.com. TacPack hints that the August box will contain some Mission First Tactical gear.


Disclosure: I receive this subscription box from TacPack, free of charge, for review.

Review: TacPack June 2017 Box

The June 2017 TacPack has landed. This box has some high and lows. Lets look inside!

Hopefully you are familiar with the concept of TacPack by now. If not, you can read the reviews of the previous TacPacks for some background on this subscription box.

Armaspec Anti-Walk Pins (for AR-15) – Your opinion of these likely comes down to you think anti-walk trigger and hammer pins are necessary. If you do, these seem to be a good value like many of Armaspec’s products.

ABKT Tactical Phantom Spector Knife – I wanted to bac mouth this knife this from the moment I saw it. It’s a “tactical” knife with an over the top design, cheap plastic scales that feel oily, and it weighs a lot. However, the liner lock engages the tang of the blade early and is very solid (big surprise). The bearing system, coupled with a well executed detent allows the blade to fire quickly via the flipper (even bigger surprise). It’s still a cheap knife but its fun and some of the features surprised me in a good way. This isn’t a great inclusion but it wasn’t as bad as I initially thought.

Burnproof Gear Rail Wrap – This is actually pretty cool. It’s a fabric wrap that is designed to go on the rail of your rifle (fits a variety of rifle types) to protect your from heat and sharp edges. If you have ever been on a shooting range in the American West, you know rifle can get hot before you even start shooting them just from laying in the sun. I’ve used similar products before that wrapped with Velcro but this one uses two independent panels joined with shock cord which allows you to install this even in places where you might already have a handstop, vertical grip, or rail mounted sight. It’s simple, clever, and it works. I never would have seen a product like this if it wasn’t in a TacPack and now I am buying a second one.

Nineline Apparel Tanker – I like and use insulated tankers/mugs all the time. This one features the Nineline Apparel logo and it seems to be very stout. The lid is the best I’ve seen on any tanker/tumbler because it seals! This is a great inclusion that anyone would use.

Overall, I rate this box as a solid okay. A lot of the value of the box is tied up in the Burnproof Gear Rail Wrap and that, coupled with the cheap feeling knife, may turn off some subscribers. The anti-walk pins are of good quality and some users will like them. Everyone will love the Nineline Tanker – it’s great.

If you want to try TacPack, you can check them out at TacPack.com. TacPack says that the June box will be their highest dollar value to date.


Disclosure: I receive this subscription box from TacPack, free of charge, for review.

Review: TacPack May 2017

The May 2017 TacPack has landed. This box is one of my favorites to date thanks to some solid inclusions from Hexmag, Doc Spartan, and Live Fire Gear. Lets look inside!

Hopefully you are familiar with the concept of TacPack by now. If not, you can read the reviews of the previous TacPacks for some background on this subscription box.

Hexmag “Blaster Pack” – There is a whole lot of Hexmag in the May box. There is an AR-15 magazine and you can never have enough magazines. There is pack of pre-cut grip tape that can be stuck into the hexagons on the magazine. Finally, there is grip that is a collaboration between Hexmag and ERGO. It’s comfortable in the hand and comes with a free “Gapper” to fill in that annoying gap behind the standard AR-15 trigger guard. No one ever said, “I think I have enough AR-15 magazines.”

Do Spartan Triple Threat – The Triple Threat is a 3 pack of Doc Spartan’s Combat Ready Ointment packaged three different ways – in a small deodorant type container, a lip balm style tube, and a tin. The different types of containers make it easier to apply the ointment in different ways or carry them in different ways but the ointment inside is the same. I’ve been using this stuff from a previous TacPack and I like it a lot. It smells good, works kind of like a triple antibiotic ointment (teatree oil kills all kinds of nasty stuff), and is versatile enough to work as a moisturizer or to prevent chafing. This is probably a lifetime supply for me.

Live Fire Gear Fire Starting Kit – This is a great inclusion too. The kit contains 1 ferro rod and 1 Live Fire tin. The full size Live Fire tins like the one in this kit spark easily, even when wet, and burn for a long time. If you have any idea what you are doing, this kit represents at least one nearly fool proof fire when you need it. I’ve been pleased with every Live Fire Gear product I have tried and I have tested the smaller version of these tins. They work and this is the kind of thing that belongs in every Get Home Bag or vehicle emergency kit. You and your family can practice with this one and then use the included Live Fire Gear coupon to pick up more tins for your kit.

TacPack Safe Magnet – Normally the TacPack add on items are meant to be humorous. This month’s magnet isn’t meant to be humorous but it is meant to be a reminder to us all to “Honor the Brave”.

If you want to try TacPack, you can check them out at TacPack.com. TacPack says that the June box will be their highest dollar value to date.

Review: TacPack April 2017

The April 2017 TacPack has landed. If you are an EDC gadget lover, you’re going to dig this one. Lets look inside!

Hopefully you are familiar with the concept of TacPack by now. If not, you can read the reviews of the previous TacPacks for some background on this subscription box.

KeySmart EDC Kit – There are two items from KeySmart this month. The first is a very cool keyfob that is made to wrap duct tape around so you can always have a small roll of I-can-fix-anything Tape with you. It comes preloaded with Gorilla Tape which is a nice touch. KeySmart also included one of their Nano-Wrenches which is very cool. It is a tiny keychain gadget that can be used to turn flat head screws and several sizes of nuts/bolts. These items were my favorites in the box.

Armaspec Titanium TakeDown Pins – If you are planning an AR-15 build, these will be handy. If you have an already built AR, you can add some bling. This TacPack is the very first time these pins have been available so you can be the first kid on your block to have them.

ABKT Tactical Cleaning Kit – Having a spare cleaning kit never hurt anyone. This one comes with several brushes, mops, a pull cable, and more. The case is a little cheap but it actually organizes the components well. Drop it in a range bag or emergency bag and go.

Splatter Targets – Everyone can use more targets. These Splatter Targets are the type that show hits well enough to see at distance. They are a useful size and will come in handy at the range. I was glad to see them in the box.

If you want to try TacPack, you can check them out at TacPack.com. The May box will include some items of HexMag among other things.

Review: TacPack February 2017 Edition

The February 2017 TacPack is here and I’ll tell you right up front that this is my favorite one to date.

Hopefully you are familiar with the concept of TacPack by now. If not, you can read the reviews of the previous TacPacks for some background on this subscription box.

Like I said before, this month’s box is my favorite to date. The perceived value is high. The usefulness and/or cool factor of the included items is high. It has a very high, I’ve-Been-Wanting-to-Try -One-of-Those factor. The TacPack has no weak items this month.

LiveFire Gear 550 FireCord – You can never have too much paracord and you can never have too many emergency firestarting materials tucked away in your EDC or various kits. LiveFire Gear’s 550 FireCord is both. It’s paracord with an inner strand that serves as an excellent emergency tinder. 25 feet is enough to make a ton of zipper pulls and lanyards.

TricornE Spool Tool – If you have paracord, you want/need a Spool Tool. This ingenious tool allows you to wrap 100 feet of paracord on it where it sits, ready to be used in projects. The tool also has an integrated cordage cutter, a bracket for holding a Mini Bic lighter, notches for holding the cord while you fuse the end, and a lanyard hole.

Bull Moose Tactical Muzzle Device – This brake is threaded 1/2×28 so it should fit a variety of rifles. I haven’t tried it yet but I will.

North Shore Kustoms Equalizer – I like knucks. I used to sell them back when we operated Edge/Equipped and I even had occasion to design one. I’ll probably never use one in any sort of defensive way. To me, they are a novelty that represents a craftsman who translates a design directly into metal. They are interesting objects that are cool to own, cool to talk about, and that is enough of a purpose for… Hold on… This one has a bottle opener!

TacPack Patch – You like patches don’t you? Of course you do.

LiveFire Gear 40% Off Coupon – The final item in the box is a 40% coupon for LiveFire Gear. I’ll put that to use for sure!

If you want to try TacPack, you can check them out at TacPack.com. They are saying that the items in the March box will have a total value of $115 and a TacPack sometime in the near future will feature the debut of a new item from Hexmag.

TacPack Giveaway

The folks at TacPack are hosting one heck of a giveaway. The prizes include 3 Sons of Liberty AR-15s and a plate carrier complete with soft armor and plates.

It’s easy to enter. Visit the contest page for details: TacPack Contest Page

Review: TacPack January 2017 Edition

The January 2017 TacPack has landed. Let’s take a look!

Hopefully you are familiar with the concept of TacPack by now. If not, you can read the reviews of the previous TacPacks for some background on this subscription box.

Before I dig into the review, I want to note that I have turned down the opportunity to review a number of other subscription boxes. I continue to review TacPacks because they provide items that I find useful and the quality is good. Other boxes that I have seen are either very expensive, provide a poor value, include mostly junk, or all of the above. TacPack has maintained a level of quality that I can appreciate.

This month’s box is another solid one. There are a number of items that are interesting with three that really stand out for me and form the basis for the usefulness of this month’s box. This isn’t one of the boxes that makes me say “wow” (there have been a couple of those) but it the sort of solid value I have come to expect from TacPack.

5.11 Tactical Alpha Scout Tanto Knife – This is probably the nicest knife included in a TacPack yet. These 5.11 knives are designed in conjunction with Blade-Tech and have a host of solid features. They just work and everyone can find a use for a knife that just works. This is a standout item… one that provides a very good perceived value in a box like this.

Breakthrough Clean Battle Born Grease – This is several years worth of grease for me. I am not really picky about oil and grease but Breakthrough Clean seems to make a good product. I’ll certainly put this to use. This is another stand out addition – the kind of thing everyone can use.

Sawtooth Barrel Floss – Everyone needs bore snakes… lots of them. This one seems nice and comes with a lifetime warranty against breakage (I’ve broken other brands before). If you break it, they replace it. That’s nice. You simply can’t go wrong with an item like this.

LighterBro Stealth – This is where we get into the sort of novelty items that always come in these boxes. The LighterBro may be useful to some but I am not likely to use it since I carry a Swiss Army Knife or multi-tool separately. This is basically a case for a lighter that integrates a few Swiss Army Knife-like tools into it. It could be a good addition to a survival kit or bug out bag.

Martin Hammer – It looks like an AR-15 hammer but its actually a keychain bottle opener. It works well and isn’t overly huge like some novelty bottle openers so in those regards, it is a good one. If you subscribe to a service like this, you can expect to never be short of bottle openers.

Check out TacPack to get in line for the February box which TacPack is saying will contain an American-made CNC machined EDC products worth $60 on its own along with a bunch of other slick kit.

Review: TacPack November 2016 Edition

The November 2016 TacPack is one of the coolest and most interesting yet.

Hopefully you are familiar with the concept of TacPack by now. If not, you can read the reviews of the previous TacPacks for some background on this subscription box. I recently received the November 2016 TacPack. Here are the details…

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This month’s box is a very solid value. The items seemed to strike a great balance between value, quality, usefulness, and level of interest. This is probably my favorite box yet in part because it exposed me to an interesting product that I am still trying to wrap my head around.

Nelson Precision Manufacturing AR.5 – All of these subscription boxes come with bottle openers. If you subscribe for long, you will end up with a ton of them and they are easy to forget about. Every once in a while you get one that stands out and the NPM AR.5 certainly stands out. It is basically an accurately crafted half scale 80% AR-15 lower that opens bottles. I have tested it thoroughly on a variety of bottles and can confirm that it works VERY well. Best. Bottle Opener. Ever.

Black Rifle Coffee Company Mug – This mug rocks. I happen to like Black Rifle Coffee Company. I also happen to like enameled steel coffee mugs and early American history. This mug hits all those notes. It is a lot nicer than most of the enamel ware I see these days. Hint: You can also drink whiskey out of it.

Burnproof Gear Boot Laces – Burnproof gear makes cool stuff, especially if you have a suppressor you need to cover. They also make really nice boot laces. These kevlar laces are super strong and have a great texture so they don’t slip which makes them very good boot laces (good boot laces are hard to find). They offer heat resistance and high tensile strength so they have all sorts of survival applications.

Exotac polySTRIKER – I own and use several Exotac products. You can never go wrong with putting one of their products in these boxes. If you don’t have a ferro rod, you need one (or two, one to practice with and one to carry). You can always find a place to tuck a good ferro rod. Inclusions like this rank just about as high as possible on the usefulness scale as it pertains to subscription boxes.

ReadyMan Home Defense Hand Grenade – You know ReadyMan for their survival cards but they actually have a lot more than that going on. They offer a variety of products and advocate readiness in all forms. This Home Defense Hand Grenade isn’t on their website currently but it is extremely interesting. It is basically a puck shaped object that has bright strobes and screeching siren. You push a button, there is a short delay when you can throw it, and then it goes off with the intent of working as a distractionary device. In the confines of a dark room or hallway, it would be very disruptive.

I need to think more on how best to use something like this. On one hand, it makes a certain amount of sense on its face and I can see how it would be useful. On the other, the home owner is already faced with an interesting conundrum when confronting the bump in the night… You have two hands but need to carry a gun, a cell phone, and a flashlight at a minimum and there may not be time to jock up with gear. Something like this has merit and I have enjoyed thinking through how it might be used effectively.

There is also a coupon included so you can save 20% off at ReadyMan.

Check out TacPack to get in line for the December box which TacPack is saying will contain a high value knife along with a bunch of other slick kit.

Review: TacPack October Edition

Hopefully you are familiar with the concept of TacPack by now. If not, you can read the reviews of the previous TacPacks for some background on this subscription box. I recently received the October TacPack. Here are the details…

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The October Box is solid in terms of value but the usefulness of some of the items may vary. This box contains a handful of items that retail higher than the fodder included in most subscription boxes so there are fewer items than you may find in a typical box but the quality is also better the most.

BreakThrough Clean Battle Born Grease – You can get by with just gun oil in most cases but grease is always good to have on hand. It stays put better on handgun slide rails, trigger engagement surfaces, and similar places that are hard to access or prone to leaking out all over you. This 12cc syringe makes application easy and could last you a few years in most cases. This is a solid inclusion.

Tactical Oatmeal Mag Carrier – This kydex magazine carrier is pretty slick. It is designed to accept a wide variety of belt hardware or MALICE clips (included). Additionally, it may be stacked with other Tactical Oatmeal Magazine Carriers in a variety of ways. The included MALICE clips will let you mount it on PALS webbing (though it can’t really be weaved) or your belt. I am not sure if this example is indicative of all Tactical Oatmeal products but while the design and molding is solid, the finish could use some work. The edges are left sharp and there is still bits of kydex left in the mounting holes. It isn’t pretty but it is functional.

Cittac EDC Beetle Buster – Cittac makes steel targets and very slick flat-pack target stands. They also make these little steel Beetle Busters. If you like knuck-like bottle openers or EDC tools, you’ll like this.

Trayvax Wallet – While I do not care to carry an exotic wallet, I can admit that this Traywax Wallet is pretty cool. It is actually of made thin steel with an adjustable strap to carry cards. It also has a place to stow a key and it blocks most RFID signals by nature of its steel construction. It’s very slim and I suspect it will last a long, long time.

Gang Bangers Anonymous Patch – Another patch for the patch wall!

Check out TacPack to get in line for the November box which TacPack is touting as the highest value yet.

Review: TacPack September Edition

Hopefully you are familiar with the concept of TacPack by now. If not, you can read the reviews of the previous TacPacks for some background. I recently received the September TacPack and here are the details…

September’s box is another one that delivers not only good value, but useful items. The usefulness of the items included continues to be my favorite thing about TacPack’s subscription service.

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Nine Line Apparel Swag Pack – Nine Line Apparel is represented in a big way in this month’s box. They included a sticker, a koozie, and a t-shirt. I have a tool chest so I can use the sticker. I like cold beverages that come in cans so I can definitely use the koozie. I also [usually] wear clothing so I will get a lot of mileage out of the All Rifles Matter shirt. I always pleased when these boxes include a shirt.

Bellflower AK47 – This is an aluminum bottle opener that is shaped like an AK-47 and can be attached to your keys. It’s anodized in a gold color so you can feel like an oil baron or sultan while you are opening bottles. Even if you don’t put it on your keychain, you need a bottle opener for every drawer in your kitchen because they tend to disappear over time and no one wants to try to remember which drawer the bottle opener is in.

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ReadyMan Survival Card – ReadyMan makes a variety of these cards. The one included in this box has a variety of fish hooks, frog spears, and other useful survival goodies packed into one easy-to-carry credit card form. I have a few of these tucked into various kits.

Wild HedgeHog Tactical – Wild HedgeHog Tactical really came through in this box. There is a coupon for 20% off at their site and one of their Ouch Pouches which is a compact, water-resistant first aid kit. You can never have too many first aid kits. This is the type of useful item that I really like finding in my TacPack.

Armaspec ST-45 Ambi Selector – This is a solid inclusion for both value and usefulness. If you are reading JTT, you almost certainly own an AR-15 in which you can use a short throw selector.

Check out TacPack to get in line for the October box which TacPack is touting as possibly their best yet.

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