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ISSUE 17

BUYER’S GUIDE FLIPPER KNIVES PG.32

GUN LIFESTYLE: GEAR • TECHNOLOGY • SPORT • OUTDOOR • HOME & PERSONAL DEFENSE

Brügger & Thomet, Aimpoint, Geco, FirstSpear, G Code, 5.11 Tactical, Smith Elite, Nosler FNH USA PG. 10

THE SWISS BRING US SOME DAMN FINE FIREARMS

IWI TAVOR MAKEOVER WITH RAT WORX

PG. 36

SIONICS WEAPON SYSTEMS’ LIGHTWEIGHT PATROL RIFLE ZEROED IN: KEN HACKATHORN PT: PROPER STRETCHING TECHNIQUES Q&A: HEATHER GRACIE VEHICLE FIREARMS TRAINING SHTF: IFAK VS MED KIT BUYER’S GUIDE: QUICK-DETACH MOUNTS

ZRX SUPPRESSOR PG. 116

BALLISTIC BRONCO PG.26

RECOILWEB.COM ISSUE 17

5.11

LOADOUT INSERT INSIDE


3 5 . 7 8 2 2 6 9 , -115 . 2 3 6 8 5

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EE Salvo 12 Visit SILENCERCO.COM/RECOIL for Official Rules and Entry Information.


036 IS S U E 17

FEATURES 036 BRÜGGER & THOMET To Apologize for Inficting the Cuckoo Clock on the USA, the Swiss are About to Send Us Some Damn Fine Firearms

048 CRUSHING COMBATIVES

056

Former Navy SEAL Dom Raso Gives RECOIL an Exclusive Look at this Dynamis System

056 RDB 5.56 Kel-Tec Creates a Bullpup for the Rest of Us

048

066 ROLLIN’ DOWN RODEO WITH A SHOTGUN… Counterintuitive Tips From the Death Valley Magazine Mobile Scout Class

076 6-POUND HAMMER Sionics Weapons Systems’ Lightweight Patrol Rife

098 MOUNT ’EM UP

066 076

A Guide to Quick-Detach Scope Mounts

116

SET PHASERS TO QUIET Rat Worx Gives the IWI Tavor a Makeover With the ZRX 9mm Suppressor

124

GRACE UNDER FIRE A Member of Martial Arts Royalty, Heather Gracie is Expanding Her Talents Into the Shooting and Business Worlds

130

RED BLOODS

098

116 136

RECOIL Offers an Exclusive Sneak Peek at a Genre-Busting Graphic Novel

136

TEQUILA: NOT JUST FOR FRAT BOYS ANYMORE Tips on Selecting a Complex and Worthy Beverage From South of the Border

124 130


Mount FLIR combat-proven thermal night vision on your rifle, because the first choice for professionals is the best choice for you.

VISIT US AT SHOT SHOW 2015

EXPERIENCE A NEW RANGE OF HANDHELD THERMAL CAMERAS BOOTH #’s 2014 & 6507

www.flir.com/recoil


PRODUCT DISCLAIMER

IS S U E 17

DEPARTMENTS 010 ON THE COVER

084 ZEROED IN Ken Hackathorn

012

DOWNRANGE Editor’s Letter

142

PT Stretching Time

016

INCOMING New Gear

150

SHTF IFAK Vs. Med Kit

020 VISIT Armed Forces History Museum

026 TRANSPORT

158

RECOILWEB

160

WANNA TRADE PATCHES?

170

GOING HOT

Blue Oval Blitzkrieg

032 UNUSUAL SUSPECTS Flipper Knives

Prices and details for items featured in RECOIL are set by the manufacturers and retailers, and are subject to change without notice.

FIREARM SAFETY IS TOP PRIORITY RECOIL reminds you to be safe and always obey firearms safety rules: 1. Treat every gun as if it were loaded. 2. Always keep the gun pointed in a safe direction. 3. Keep your finger off the trigger until ready to fire. 4. Be aware of your target’s foreground and background. All contents in RECOIL Magazine are professionally photographed in a closed studio or range. Do not attempt to recreate any photographs depicted in this magazine.

Throughout this issue you will see certain images are labeled as being 1:1 Actual Size. This designation is for the print edition of this issue. Because of the various screen sizes on different tablets and computers, we cannot always provide actual life size images in digital versions. We apologize if this causes any confusion and thank you for your understanding. RECOIL (USPS 013-320), March/April 2015; Number 17, is published bimonthly by TEN: The Enthusiast Network, LLC, 261 Madison Avenue, 6th floor, New York, NY 10016. Copyright © 2015 by TEN: The Enthusiast Network Magazines, LLC. All Rights Reserved. Periodicals Postage Paid at New York, NY and at additional mail offices. Subscriptions U.S. and U.S. Possessions: $49.97 per year (6 issues); Canadian, $55.97, Foreign, $61.97 (including surface mail postage). Payment in advance. U.S. funds only. POSTMASTER: Send all UAA to CFS. (See DMM 707.4.12.5): NON-POSTAL AND MILITARY FACILITIES: send address changes to RECOIL, P.O. Box 420235, Palm Coast, FL 32142-0235. Please allow 8-10 weeks for delivery of first issue. No part of this book may be reproduced without written permission. This book is purchased with the understanding that the information presented herein is from many varied sources for which there can be no warranty or responsibility by the publisher as to accuracy or completeness.


COVER PHOTO BY RALPH WILHELM

ON THE COVER

1 SUBMACHINE GUN

4 PDW

MAKE:

MAKE:

Brügger & Thomet

Brügger & Thomet

MODEL:

MODEL:

APC9

MP9-N

MSRP:

MSRP:

$2,250 to $2,500

$1,850 to $2,510

URL:

URL:

www.bt-ag.ch

www.bt-ag.ch

2 RIFLE SIGHT

06

7 JACKET

MAKE:

FirstSpear MODEL:

Prototype jacket MSRP:

N/A

URL:

www.frst-spear.com

11

5 SIGHT

MAKE:

MAKE:

Aimpoint

Aimpoint

MODEL:

MODEL:

T1

T1

MSRP:

10

MSRP:

$753

$753

URL:

URL:

www.aimpoint.com

www.aimpoint.com

3 VERTICAL FOREGRIP

MAKE:

Brügger & Thomet

6 AMMO

MAKE:

Geco

MODEL:

MODEL:

Vertical Foregrip

9mm Luger 124-Grain FMJ

MSRP:

MSRP:

$85

$15 (Box of 50)

URL:

02

URL:

www.bt-ag.ch

www.primeclub.com

OFF THE COVER 8 PANTS

MAKE:

10 HOLSTER

MAKE:

5.11 Tactical

G Code

MODEL:

MODEL:

Ridgeline Pants MSRP:

$71

URL:

www.511tactical.com

9 SUNGLASSES

MAKE:

Smith Elite MODEL:

Grey Man Tactical MSRP:

$160

URL:

www.smithoptics.com/elite/

HSP INCOG MSRP:

$70

URL:

www.tacticalholsters.com

11 HANDGUN

MAKE:

FNH USA MODEL:

FNS-40C MSRP:

$500 URL:

www.fnhusa.com

12 HANDGUN AMMO

MAKE:

Nosler

MODEL:

Defense .40 S&W Bonded JHP MSRP:

$21

URL:

www.nosler.com

13 BELT

MAKE:

5.11 Tactical MODEL:

Apex T-Rail

03

MSRP:

$65

URL:

www.511tactical.com

01


08 09

05

04

12

07

13


BY IAIN HARRISON PHOTO BY KENDA LENSEIGNE

Happy birthday to us. RECOIL celebrates its third anniversary

probably need to be poked with a stick to show any sort of

this issue, so we pulled out the big guns.

reaction when someone announces yet another new AR-15.

Firearm publications are like dogs — granted, some more

But Tom Marshall insisted the Sionics carbine on page 76 was

than others — so that would make us 21 in human years. To

the heat, so I gave him the beneft of the doubt. Then I shot it,

help us celebrate, please turn to page 136, where our friend,

and damn if he wasn’t right. Brügger & Thomet is probably not

funny man, and actor Mark Christopher Lawrence, advises on

on anyone’s list of top U.S. gun companies, and yet its Swiss

selecting the right tequila for birthdays and really any occasion.

guns — like an actor whose name you can never remember, but

Of course, if we’re of legal age to drink, then we should be able

whom you keep seeing everywhere — are always popping up in

to take to the road as well, assuming you’re sober. What better

movies and videogames. Well, they’re now available in the USA,

frst ride than something quintessentially American, like a ’79

and we bring you the frst look.

Bronco with a big-block V-8. And a minigun. The Ballistic Bronco marks the start of what we hope is a series of collaborations with some of our sister publications in the

to persuade us to get involved. Red Bloods is unlike anything

automotive world, because most car guys tend to have a soft

else in the realm of graphic novels, and we hope you enjoy the

spot for guns. By spreading the gospel to gearheads, we make

preview.

IS SU E

17

new gun nuts. And the bigger our church, the harder it is for

REC O ILW E B .C O M

012

When one of our favorite photography studios whispered that they were working on a special project, it didn’t take much

I could stop right there and you’d have the best damn maga-

the Muppets in Washington to trample our rights. If you haven’t

zine on the newsstand, but in the hallowed tradition of cheesy

already seen our show, please wander on over to the Motor

afternoon infomercials: Wait! Call now and we’ll double your

Trend channel on YouTube and look for the latest Dirt Every

offer with information on knives, the latest kit, an interview with

Day episode, and tell us what you think. Like RECOIL itself, the

one of the greatest frearm trainers to have ever lived, a buyers’

Bronco is a work in progress, and we’ll be adding to it through-

guide to QD scope mounts, frsthand information on armed

out the year, posting updates to RECOILweb.com as we go.

vehicle operations, and of course there’s Heather Gracie.

Speaking of YouTube, Dugan Ashley of CarniK Con fame joins us to review Kel-Tec’s new bullpup, bringing his own inimitable humor and fashion sense to the party. If you’re like me, you

Here’s to the next three years.


Because we’re proud to serve those who put it on the line all over the globe, Monkey Edge offers a discount program to active duty military, law enforcement and EMS personnel. For more information, email us at sales@monkeyedge.com


Editorial. Editor/ Iain Harrison Senior Editor/ Patrick Vuong Managing Editor/ John Schwartze Web Editor/ David Reeder

Advertising. General Manager/ Mark Han Associate General Manager/ Danny Chang Sr. Manager, New Product Development/ Andy Cheng Advertising Operations Coordinator/ Janette Lopez

Photography Studio Manager/ Jorge Nuñez Contributing Editors/ Steven Kuo Contributors/ Dugan Ashley, Conrad Bui, Greg Burnham,

National Sales Offces.

Chris Bywater, Natalie Cake, Jeff Gonzales, Mark Christopher Lawrence, Mike Landers, Kenda Lenseigne, Jody Lewis, Tom Marshall, Dave Merrill, Q Concepts, Straight 8, Jake Swanson, Joshua Vandenbrink, Ralph Wilhelm Special Thanks/ Cowtown Range, Paul Hotaling, Chen Lee

Art Direction & Design. Creative Director/ Alan Alpanian Group Art Director/ Ti Tong Art Director/ Gene Coo

New York Offce/ 212.915.4000 261 Madison Avenue, New York, NY 10016 Los Angeles Offce/ 310.531.9900 831 S. Douglas Street, El Segundo, CA 90245 Irvine Offce/ 949.705.3100 1733 Alton Parkway, Suite 100, Irvine, CA 92606 Detroit Offce/ 248.594.5999 4327 Delemere Court, Royal Oak, MI 48073 Chicago Offce/ 312.396.0620 Tampa Offce/ 813.675.3479 To advertise on this magazine’s website, or any of TEN: The Enthusiast Network’s other enthusiast sites, please contact us at recoil_advertising@enthusiastnetwork.com.

Manufacturing & Production Operations. VP, Manufacturing & Ad Operations/ Greg Parnell Senior Director, Ad Operations/ Pauline Atwood Archivist/ Thomas Voehringer

TEN: The Enthusiast Network, LLC. Chairman/ Peter Englehart Chief Executive Offcer/ Scott P. Dickey EVP, Chief Financial Offcer/ Bill Sutman

Submissions. recoil@enthusiastnetwork.com

EVP, Chief Creative Offcer/ Alan Alpanian EVP, Sports & Entertainment/ Norb Garrett EVP, Chief Content Offcer/ Angus MacKenzie EVP, Operations/ Kevin Mullan SVP, Enterprises/ Tyler Schulze

Subscriber Customer Services. Domestic/Canadian: 888.681.7064 Foreign: 386.246.0439 recoil@emailcustomerservice.com This magazine is purchased by the buyer with the understanding that the information presented is from various sources from which there can be no warranty or responsibility by TEN: The Enthusiast Network, LLC., or the publisher as to legality, completeness and accuracy. Any submissions or contributions from readers shall be subject to and governed by TEN: The Enthusiast Network’s User Content Submission Terms and Conditions, which are posted at http://www.enthusiastnetwork.com/submissions/ BACK ISSUES To order back issues, visit https://www.circsource.com/store/ storeBackIssues.html.

EVP, Sales & Marketing/ Eric Schwab SVP, Digital Operations/ Dan Bednar VP, Sales Operations/ Matt Boice SVP, Financial Planning/ Mike Cummings SVP, Automotive Digital/ Geoff DeFrance VP, Editorial Operations/ Amy Diamond EVP, Aftermarket Automotive/ Doug Evans SVP, Content Strategy, Automotive/ David Freiburger SVP, Digital, Sports & Entertainment/ Greg Morrow VP, Digital Monetization/ Elisabeth Murray SVP, Marketing/ Ryan Payne EVP, Mind Over Eye/ Bill Wadsworth

EDITORIAL CONTRIBUTIONS Editorial contributions are welcomed, but editors recommend that contributors query first. Contribution must be accompanied by return postage and we assume no responsibility for loss or damage thereto. Manuscripts must be typewritten on white paper, and all photographs must be accompanied by captions. Photo model releases required on all persons in photos. Offgrid reserves the right to use material at its discretion, and we reserve the right to edit material to meet our requirements. Upon publication, payment will be made at our current rate, and that said payment will cover author’s and contributor’s rights of the contribution. Contributor’s act of mailing contribution shall constitute an express warranty that the material is original and no infringement on the rights of others. Mail contributions to: Offgrid Magazine, 1733 Alton Parkway, Irvine, CA 92606. ADVERTISING INFORMATION Please call Recoil Advertising Department, (949) 705-3100. Related publications: 4-Wheel & Off-Road, Four Wheeler, Jp, Truckin, Diesel Power, 8-Lug HD Truck, Dirt Sports & Off-Road, Hot Rod, Car Craft, Muscle Mustangs & Fast Fords, Mustang Monthly, Vette, Chevy High Performance, Lowrider, Classic Trucks, Super Street, European Car, Motor Trend, Truck Trend, Automobile, Sound & Vision, Stereophile and other specialty magazines. Printed in the USA Copyright © 2015 by TEN: The Enthusiast Network Magazines, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

Consumer Marketing, Enthusiast Media Subscription Company, INC. SVP, Circulation/ Tom Slater VP, Retention & Operations Fulfllment/ Donald T. Robinson III


1

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17

As you know, one of the biggest improvements you can make to your AR rife is to swap out the stock trigger for one that doesn’t feel like dragging an anvil down a gravel driveway. KE Arms’ Drop-In Trigger is wire EDM cut from A2 tool steel, through hardened to RC 55-57, and then titaniumnitride coated for a long service life. It’s also user-adjustable for take-up and reset, without having to remove it from the gun. The pre-production sample we played was a solid value single-stage unit, coming in right around 4 pounds with a crisp break and short, tactile reset. It’s hard to fnd a quality trigger for less than two bills — this one works well, should outlive the rife it’s ftted to, and won’t break the bank.

3

Although we’ve done gun-plumbing with little more than an angle grinder (and got the scars on hands and guns to prove it), it’s always a bonus to have the right tools for the job. MGW’s Sight Pro installation tool is an absolute beast that allows the user to swap out factory sights for aftermarket versions. “So what? I can do that with a punch and hammer!” we hear you say. Yes, you probably can. But this impeccably machined tool not only has the unmistakable heft and feel of quality, it allows you to swap sights without making your slide look like it was attacked by a swarm of angry beavers. It even works on XDm front sights, which is the acid test of any sight tool. Although not inexpensive, it’ll pay for itself in the cost of not refnishing your handgun — plus you’ll make the purchase price back in beer, once your buddies fnd out you have one.

4

One of our biggest pet peeves when taking a break in between shooting drills is sipping from a water bottle only to get a mouthful of lukewarm liquid or, conversely, grabbing said water bottle to fnd it ice cold and “sweating” from the condensation. We never have that problem with the Brazos Autoseal because it’s vacuum-insulated and engineered to keep drinks cold for up to 20 hours. Plus, it’s never once sweated on us. Made of a BPA-free stainless-steel body, it features a spout shield, a clip-on handle that can attach to packs, and a nifty one-touch spill-proof and leak-proof lid. Holds 24 ounces, stands 11 inches, and comes in black (shown) and stainless.

MAKE:

MAKE:

MAKE:

MAKE:

KE Arms

Sightmark

Maryland Gun Works

Avex

MODEL:

MODEL:

MODEL:

MODEL:

Drop-In Trigger MSRP: $190

Pinnacle 1-6x24 Scope MSRP: $1,200

Sight Pro Universal Installation Tool MSRP: $330

Brazos Autoseal MSRP: $30

URL:

URL:

URL:

URL:

www.kearms.com

www.sightmark.com

www.brownells.com

www.avexsport.com

REC O ILW E B .C O M

016

2

Entering the ultra-competitive 1-6x scope market is a huge gamble for any scope company. For a relative newcomer like Sightmark, known mainly for value-priced red-dots, we imagine that the design team was sweating bullets when the fnal drawings were sent to production in Japan. The good news is that this glass offers excellent edge-to-edge clarity, a useful milliradian reticle design with Mil turrets, and either red or green illumination. The adjustment clicks are crisp, audible, and tactile, and you have the choice of running either capped or uncapped turrets (thread protectors are provided). Two elevation turrets are provided for users who wish to use this scope on a DMR rig — the usual Mil increments are supplemented by yardage markings calibrated for M118LR and M193 ball. Downsides are a lack of zero stop and the illumination is not visible under bright sunlight, but the price-to-performance ratio is otherwise excellent.

2

1

4 3


5

Magpul has recently come out with two simple and effective devices to make your garage gunsmithing easier and more enjoyable. The BEV Block (or Barrel Extension Vise) is a compact, all-in-one vise block for installing or removing AR-15 barrel nuts and muzzle devices, whether your upper receiver is billet or forged. Its clever design engages the barrel extension itself with steel lugs, rather than just securing the receiver — a great idea when you actually think about how using typical upper receiver vise blocks to work on your gun can put a lot of pressure on your barrel index pin and aluminum upper. Flip it over and use it as a magwell vise block to support your lower during maintenance. Meanwhile, the Armorer’s Wrench is the perfect ft for installing and removing rife receiver extensions and castle nuts, yanking on fash hiders and barrel nuts, and even popping open a frosty adult beverage after your project is complete. It’s not cheap, but it’s made of solid steel with a phosphate fnish for an assured grip and will probably last forever. Both the BEV and the Armorer’s Wrench are made in the USA and have become permanent fxtures in the RECOIL tool cabinet.

6

Replay XD is elbowing its way into more point-of-view action camera market share with the Prime X. At just 3.8 inches in length and 1.18 inches in diameter, the Prime X is one of the most compact cameras in its class — yet shoots video up to 1080p at 60 frames per second and still images at 16 megapixels in 4:3 aspect ratio. Its cylindrical form factor is perfect for weapon-mounted applications, though lacking an on-board display makes confguring settings a bit fddly and prevents you from checking your framing and footage — you’ll need to connect (via Wi-Fi) it to your smartphone for that. The 1,700-mAh battery offers 3.5 hours of use on a single charge. Plus, it features low-profle mounts, 360-degree camera rotation, and a sealed anodizedaluminum housing, making it waterproof up to 3 meters.

7

8

Avengers jokes aside, this tribute to Norse god Thor and his father Odin from Rogue American is one cool T-shirt. The Gungnir shirt features a stylized illustration of Thor’s Mjolnir hammer with Elder Futhark Runes surrounding it on the front and the symbol for Odin’s Gungnir spear on the back. It’s made of 7-ounce, 100-percent soft cotton in the USA.

Tired of punching holes through rectangular paper that just stands there? The TIM (or Target is Moving) Target System is about to change all of that. As its name implies, this innovative, patent-pending system swings a target on an arc from side to side to provide dynamic shooting scenarios. TIM’s motor runs on four AA batteries, surrounded by an aluminum base, and can be adjustable via remote control. And thanks to die-cut cardboard targets, it can stand up at outdoor ranges or be hung upside down at indoor ranges without fear of ricochets. There are fve systems available, including a long-range and competition versions. Made in the USA.

MAKE:

Rogue American Apparel MODEL:

Gungnir T-shirt MSRP: $30 URL:

www.rogueamericanapparel.com

MAKE:

MAKE:

MAKE:

Magpul

Replay XD

TIM Systems LLC

MODEL:

MODEL:

MODEL:

BEV Block and Armorer’s Wrench MSRP: $50 for the BEV, $80 for the wrench

Prime X Camera System MSRP: $300

TIM Target System MSRP: Starts at $195

URL:

URL:

URL:

store.magpul.com

www.replayxd.com

www.targetismoving.com

5

8

7

6


9

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Take a bolt-action rife, smash it together with a torch, and what do you get? The Bolt Flashlight from the innovative designers at Tuff-Writer, which makes some of the best tactical pens on the market today. They took Fellhoelter Knives’ bolt-actuation mechanism and adapted it seamlessly with FourSevens illumination technology to create one of the coolest, sleekest everyday-carry fashlights we’ve seen in recent years. Its Cree XM-L2 LED has high, low, and strobe modes (with four hidden modes) and puts out up to 490 lumens. With a little practice, it’s a cinch to manipulate the bolt for either constant-on or momentary light. Plus, at 5.83 inches long and just 2.7 ounces, it’s a low-vis tool that fts in your pants or pack without drawing any unwanted attention that a typical tactical fashlight might.

REC O ILW E B .C O M

018

MAKE:

10 11

The Samson PRO QuickRelease Mount for the Aimpoint H1/T1 series has been skeletonized to reduce weight while still providing durability and strength, thanks to its precision-machined, 6061-aluminum body and stainless-steel locking mechanism. Perhaps the best part is its one-handed operation, which doesn’t require a tool for adjustments. Also, it’s ambidextrous and omni-directional. MAKE:

Samson Manufacturing MODEL:

Samson PRO QuickRelease Mount MSRP:

Tuff-Writer

$99

MODEL:

URL:

Bolt Flashlight MSRP: $100

www.samson-mfg.com

URL:

www.tuffwriter.com

Just because you’ve shot on a fat range and own an inside-the-waistband holster doesn’t mean you’re properly prepared to carry a concealed weapon. But what if you don’t have the money to take a CCW pistol course from a top-tier instructor or live in a region where such classes just aren’t readily available? Enter the Concealed Carry Masters DVD Course. Created by former Navy SEAL Larry Yatch and his team at Sealed Mindset, this video training program takes you step by step through vital topics, from assessing environments to fghting empty-handed to get to your gun — all in the comfort of your home. (You’ll need a training pistol, which isn’t included.) The course has almost fve hours of DVD instruction, four-and-a-half hours of drills, and a coil-bound companion guide.

12 13

The fruits of a collaboration between BCM and Travis Haley, the Kinesthetic Angled Grip (KAG) provides a surprisingly comfortable surface and low-profle index point for your support hand, especially with a “C-clamp” or thumb-forward type of grip. Available in KeyMod and Picatinny rail versions, the KAG attaches directly to your rife’s handguard. The Picatinny rail direct mount is ingenious, securing to the rail without any additional bulk — note it does require you to remove any other accessories to slide it into place. Made of polymer, it can be had in black, fat dark earth (KeyMod version shown), foliage green, and wolf gray (1913 Picatinny Rail version shown).

The new Aimpoint Carbine Optic (ACO) brings revered Aimpoint technology within reach for shooters with champagne tastes and beer budgets. It has a 2-MOA dot and comes with a non-QD mount. Note that the ACO on maximum brightness was roughly equivalent to the “11” setting on our trusty T-1. A step down from the popular Aimpoint Patrol Rife Optic, the ACO looks very similar, but dispenses with night vision compatibility, cannot be submerged as far, and has shorter battery life (rated at one year of continuous use versus three). It also lacks the PRO’s lens covers and quick detach mount. For the price, that’s a fair bargain for a lot of shooters to get legendary Aimpoint quality and durability.

MAKE:

MAKE:

MAKE:

Sealed Mindset

Bravo Company USA

Aimpoint

MODEL:

MODEL:

MODEL:

Concealed Carry Masters DVD Course

Aimpoint Carbine Optic (ACO)

MSRP:

BCMGUNFIGHTER Kinesthetic Angled Grip

$197

MSRP:

$393

URL:

$20

URL:

www.sealedmindset.com

URL:

www.aimpoint.com

MSRP:

www.bravocompanyusa.com

9

10

12

13 11


ARMED FORCES HISTORY MUSEUM FLORIDA’S HIDDEN MILITARY GEM IS A BIG FIND IN A SMALL CITY BY GREG BURNHAM PHOTOGRAPHY BY Q CONCEPTS

Every town has its own hidden gem,

passion for everything military took

but how many small cities can

off like a Stinger Missile.

claim to have a 35,000-square-

The museum began in 1996 as

foot museum dedicated to our

a traveling display of military and

nation’s armed forces? Situated in

historical items, gradually morphing

an industrial park in Largo, Florida,

into what it is today. About 95 per-

the Armed Forces Museum is the

cent of the items on display belong

culmination of one man’s lifelong

to Piazza, with the remainder coming

passion. More than 50 years ago,

from private donors, some of whom

John Piazza Sr. started collecting

are local military veterans who volun-

military memorabilia after receiving

teer their time at the museum. Those

a couple of hand grenades follow-

lucky enough to visit when they are

ing his service in the U.S. Marine

there can hear the humble, frsthand

Corps. With that simple start, his

accounts of their heroic deeds. EC O ILW E B .C O M


ARMED FORCES HISTORY MUSEUM

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17

Finding the museum is easy, thanks

REC O ILW E B .C O M

22

representing all branches of the

The museum holds an impressive

to billboard-sized signs showing

service — from the modern day U.S.

display of weapons and ordnance, but

visitors where to turn. The museum is

Navy Full Dress White “choker” with

it’s the massive exhibits that make

located at a dead-end road surrounded

the SEAL Trident to the Army uniform

this museum unique. Upon walking

by businesses and warehouses. Upon

of the late Leonard T. Schroeder Jr., a

through the double doors from the ord-

driving into the parking lot, where

Largo resident and the frst American

nance displays, you enter the trenches

parking is free, you’re greeted by a

to step foot on the beaches of Nor-

of World War I. The exhibit attacks

MiG-21 PFM jet fghter. Numerous

mandy during the D-Day invasion.

your senses with the sounds of combat

armored vehicles sit alongside the

and the sights of battle from the view

parking lot — this surplus of transpor-

within the trenches. The only thing it

tation outside the museum is just one

lacks is the smell of the mustard gas

sign of the many military artifacts to

— and we’re thankful for that. From

be found inside.

the trenches you walk into a scene

Walking through the front door,

from Tora! Tora! Tora! with the World

one is greeted by pleasant museum

War II Pearl Harbor exhibit. A feet

employees and volunteers, as well as

of large-scale models from the movie

a small battalion of mannequins in the

take up a large part of the room. Also

“Salute to Service” exhibit. There are

contained in the room are two chairs

more than two dozen dress uniforms

that once belonged to Admiral Yamamoto, the man who gave the order to bomb Pearl Harbor. Every branch is represented in the World War II exhibits. The Marines have their battles in the South Pacifc epitomized with a fully operational 1942 Stuart tank and a recording of Iwo Jima survivor John Residence, who lives in Largo. Through the audio track, he provides visitors with his account of the battle of Iwo Jima and how, despite his injuries, he stayed with his unit to fght on for an additional 36 days!


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O F JD U P V I X B C T E H KZ M G S Q W N ª L F   

JJ T G â„¢ U


ARMED FORCES HISTORY MUSEUM

World War II is represented in several rooms. Exhibits on the South Pacifc transition into Normandy and the “French Village” display. A full-size diorama of a Normandy beach with soldiers at the ready and a narration from Schroeder greets visitors at the start of the D-Day exhibits. After walking through the invasion, you fnd yourself walking down the cobblestone

visitors as they enter is a Korean War-

streets of a French village, which con-

era Bell helicopter.

IS SU E

17

tains a replica of Sainte-Mere-Eglise

REC O ILW E B .C O M

24

Next, get on your jungle boots and

If the static displays from World War I and II don’t impress you and having stray “bullets” whistle by

church, best known for its incident

walk through a portion of the Ho Chi

doesn’t get your blood pumping, then

involving John Steele of the 505th

Minh Trail, complete with the sounds of

try a ride in the seven-person motion

Parachute Infantry Regiment. After the

a helo fying through hostile fre and the

simulator theater. Rock, roll, and pitch

private’s parachute got caught on one

triple-canopy effect of the trees blocking

in a reconnaissance mission during

of the church’s spires and he was shot

out all natural light. The Vietnam War ex-

the 1942 Battle of Iwo Jima or ride

in the foot, he pretended to be dead

hibit displays items from the North Viet-

in an ore mine over bubbling lava.

for several hours. He was taken pris-

namese — probably the most unusual is

This virtual voyager is the same type

oner by the Germans, but later rescued

a handmade Vietnamese rife.

found at those large amusement parks

by American soldiers and rejoined his

The Cold War is represented, as is

located in the middle of Florida, but

outft. Steele can be seen “hanging

the Gulf War. In fact, the museum has

right here in Largo. Much closer to the

around” the museum as well — just

an offcial uniform once belonging to

beaches, too.

remember to look up.

Saddam Hussein. This is the only one

The museum is a rewarding walk

known to exist in the United States.

through the history of not only the

a Sherman tank, an M3A1 Half-

Maybe we shouldn’t question how it

United States military, but also the

track, and a 1942 military-outftted

came to be at the museum.

countries we found ourselves sharing

Within this area, visitors can see

Harley-Davidson motorcycle. Then the

the battlefelds with. Take the time

cobblestone street leads visitors into

to fnd this hidden gem the next time

the “German Village” exhibit, which

you’re in the Sunshine State.

contains the uniform of General Karl Maus, one of Germany’s most decorated tank commanders. From World War II, we walk into

 ARMED FORCES HISTORY MUSEUM ADDRESS:

2050 34th Way North, Largo, Florida 33771

Korea and the Bulldog and Patton

TIMES:

tanks. All the tanks and vehicles in

Tuesday to Saturday: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday: 12 p.m. to 4 p.m.

the museum are operational, as far as being able to drive them down the street. The MASH feld hospital shows off authentic medical instruments. Straight out of an episode of M*A*S*H is Rosie’s Bar, and outside to greet

ADMISSION:

Adults, $17.95; seniors and veterans with a VA ID card, $14.95; and children ages 4 to 12, $12.95. Free for children 3 and younger and active/retired military with military ID. URL:

www.armedforcesmuseum.com


BLUE OVAL

BLITZKRIEG SAY HELLO TO RECOIL’S BALLISTIC BRONCO BY JOHN SCHWARTZE PHOTOGRAPHY BY KENDA LENSEIGNE

If you’ve been a longtime reader of RECOIL, you’ve seen this Transport column run the gamut from mild to wild, practical to outrageous. We get asked periodically, though, what kinds of frearms us staff guys have in our safes or in the vehicles we drive. Well, this month we’re answering one of those questions. Our Grand Poobah Iain Harrison wanted his own tactical vehicle that could be had on an editor’s budget, but still have some semblance of practicality, versatility, and style. Since Iain is about as subtle as a Sam Peckinpah movie, you can bet that his mode of transportation would follow suit. That’s right, just good ol’ fashioned American iron. The Ford Bronco has been a staple of the 4x4 community since its unveiling in 1966, and many consider the solid-axle ’78-’79s as the best of the bunch. If you saw this story and experienced an eight-track fashback, you might be asking if this old horse is even practical. Seriously? That’s like asking if Dirty Harry’s S&W Model 29 was a sensible choice for stopping criminals. Of course it was. These trucks were made when things were meant to last for decades if maintained properly, instead of the planned obsolescence inherent to many of today’s vehicles.

1

2


1 LIGHT BAR

2 BUMPERS

3 NITRIDING

4 WHEELS

5 TIRES

6 EXTERIOR COVER WRAP

MAKE:

MAKE:

MAKE:

MAKE:

MAKE:

4 Wheel Parts

Rob Bonney Fabrication

H&M Metal Processing

Pro Comp

Pro Comp

MAKE:

MODEL:

MODEL:

MODEL:

MODEL:

MODEL:

Fast-Trac Designs

Three 8-inch 130-watt halogen

Custom

Xtreme MT2 315/70/17

URL:

PHONE:

Custom BLACKNITRIDE ferritic nitrocarburizing treatment

17-inch

URL:

URL:

www.fast-tracdesigns.com

www.4wheelparts.com

(602) 370-7955

URL:

URL:

www.procompusa.com

www.procompusa.com

www.blacknitride.com

3 4 5 6 1979 FORD

BRONCO

460CI V-8 C6 AUTOMATIC


BLUE OVAL BLITZKRIEG 1 MINIGUN

1 2

MAKE:

Dillon Aero MODEL:

M134 URL:

www.dillonaero.com

2 ROLL CAGE

MAKE:

Dillon Aero MODEL:

Custom URL:

www.dillonaero.com

3 EXHAUST

MAKE:

Gibson Performance MODEL:

Custom URL:

www.gibsonperformance.com

4 REAR BRAKES

MAKE:

LMC Truck MODEL:

Disc conversion 17

URL:

IS SU E

www.LMCTruck.com

OLD-SCHOOL IS NEW AGAIN The aftermarket industry for classic

REC O ILW E B .C O M

28

3 4

factory C6 trans. New Rancho shocks all around, along with a rear disc brake

trucks is booming. Though they have

conversion from LMC Truck, help keep

the usual hitches older vehicles are

this ride stable and stoppable. An LMC

known for, go look up the price of a

Truck fuse block also resides in the

few Broncos or F-100s that have aged

engine compartment, at the ready for

some 20-plus years. You might be

future electrical accessory updates.

surprised. Their value continues to

Exterior appointments were kept

climb. Finding replacement parts from

pretty true to stock, but that didn’t

companies like LMC Truck is easy, and

stop Iain from making things a bit

on many components, the variety of

more interesting. Since this was more

upgrades has boosted the lifespan of

go than show, it made sense to pass

these old haulers considerably.

on a shiny paintjob, so the body was

Does this thing guzzle gas? Now that

wrapped in beige with some camo

Iain dumped the factory 351 in favor

components by Fast-Trac Designs in

of a 460 that’s been topped with a

Phoenix. Custom armored bumpers

Holley intake and 650-cfm carb, it’s

by Rob Bonney Fabrication adorn the

as thirsty as a sailor on a liberty pass.

stem and stern, along with a Smitty-

Since Iain is a desert dweller familiar

bilt XRC winch in front and a light bar

with the damage that foods can cre-

with three 8-inch 130-watt halogen

ate, staying above the waterline in a

spots mounted, courtesy of 4 Wheel

GTFO situation is a must, hence the

Parts.

large 17-inch Pro Comp wheels, black

For the inside, you’ll fnd a pair of

nitrided by H&M Metal Processing.

Smittybilt bucket seats with G.E.A.R.

Gibson Performance handled the cus-

MOLLE covers. An LMC Truck sound-

tom 3.5-inch exhaust, complete with a

proofng kit and vinyl carpet help keep

removable center section to service the

decibels down (or perhaps up, when


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BLUE OVAL BLITZKRIEG

IS SU E

17

1 2 3

guns?” — just

also in the works to sit on the roof for

look up top,

some thermal goodness and additional

and you’ll be

nocturnal peace of mind.

pleased to fnd

REC O ILW E B .C O M

30

4

If you think it all stops here, noth-

a muthaf#¢king

ing could be further from the truth.

Dillon Aero mini-

Monthly updates can be seen at

gun mounted

RECOILweb.com and at the Dirt Every

atop the cage of

Day channel on YouTube. Look for

the same make.

future additions — including weapons

Don’t tell us

storage, a recovery kit, integrated fuel

Iain is blaring Motörhead). A pair of

you’ve never had the urge to put one

and water tanks, IR lights, a rooftop

TNVC PVS-14 optics for driver and

on your daily driver. A custom BCM

tent system, and much more. Yes,

passenger will also make night excur-

rife also resides in the truck, for when

it’s a work in progress, but with Iain’s

sions a bit more exciting.

Iain gets bored of going through pallets

“this one goes to 11” type of Brit-

of ammunition and switches to some-

ish swagger we really didn’t expect

thing smaller. A FLIR marine gimbal is

anything less.

If this is boring you, and you’re asking yourself, “Where are all the

1 RIFLE

MAKE:

2 SOUND DEADENING/CARPET

4 CLOTHING

MAKE:

6 THERMAL IMAGING

BCM

MAKE:

5.11

MAKE:

MODEL:

LMC Truck

URL:

FLIR

Custom 5.56mm: 14.5-inch enhanced upper receiver, 13-inch handguard, Mod4 charging handle, auto bolt carrier group. Mod 1 compensator, Mod 1 grip, folding sights, Geissele Super Dynamic 3 Gun trigger, Magpul enhanced trigger guard, VLTOR A5 system, BCM Gunfgther Stock Mod 0, FLIR RS64 URL:

www.bravocompanymfg.com

URL:

www.LMCTruck.com

3 SEATS

www.511tactical.com

5 WINCH

MODEL:

Marine gimbal URL:

www.tnvc.com

MAKE:

MAKE:

Smittybilt

Smittybilt

(NOT YET INSTALLED)

MODEL:

MODEL:

Bucket with G.E.A.R. MOLLE cover

XRC 12,000-lb URL:

URL:

www.smittybilt.com

www.smittybilt.com

(NOT YET INSTALLED)


UNUSUAL SUSPECTS

readjusting your grip. Others still could contend

guard after the blade opens. Plus, fipper knives

purposes, one of your primary concerns is prob-

that an automatic knife or a blade with an

are just plain cool. And after reviewing the

ably how fast you can deploy it. After all, the

Emerson wave-shaped opening feature allows

latest models here in these pages, you’ll most

sharpest and most expensive blade in the world

for faster deployment. These types of debates

likely agree.

will do you no good if you can’t get it out before

are akin to the dreaded 1911-versus-Glock

a bad guy smashes your braincase.

discussions. arsenal for all kinds of cool tools. So, fippers

push with your index fnger to fip open the

have naturally found a home in our knife

blade. Purists might argue that thumb-stub

collection. We especially like how most fipper

openings are faster because they don’t require

tabs have the dual purpose of acting as a fnger

MAKE:

17

MAKE:

MAKE:

4 Kershaw Knives

7 Columbia River Knife

MODEL:

and Tool

UZI Mini Stone Wash Folder

Knockout

OAL:

Fossil

6 inches

OAL:

7.9 inches

BLADE LENGTH:

8.88 inches

2.5 inches

BLADE LENGTH:

3.25 inches

BLADE MATERIAL:

3.96 inches

420 stainless steel

BLADE MATERIAL:

Sandvik 14C28N stainless steel

WEIGHT:

8Cr13MoV

3.1 ounces

WEIGHT:

3.4 ounces

MSRP:

6.1 ounces

$20

MSRP:

$115

URL:

URL:

$90

MODEL:

IS SU E

Ultimately, we’ll always make room in our

— folding knives with a tab that you can

1 CampCo

REC O ILW E B .C O M

BY PATRICK VUONG

If you carry a folding knife for self-defense

With that in mind, we’re focusing on fippers

032

FLIPPER KNIVES

www.uzi.com

www.kershawknives.com

MODEL: OAL:

BLADE LENGTH: BLADE MATERIAL: WEIGHT: MSRP: URL:

www.crkt.com MAKE:

2 Benchmade Knife Company

MAKE:

5 Red Horse Knife Works MODEL:

MODEL:

War Pig

OAL:

8 inches

BLADE LENGTH:

3.25 inches

BLADE MATERIAL:

D2 tool steel

WEIGHT:

7.52 ounces

MSRP:

$398 (standard), $547 (as shown)

300-1 Axis Flipper 7.36 inches 3.18 inches

154CM stainless steel 4.85 ounces $180

URL:

www.benchmade.com MAKE:

3 Taylor Brands MODEL:

OAL:

BLADE LENGTH: BLADE MATERIAL: WEIGHT: MSRP: URL:

www.redhorseknifeworks.com MAKE:

6 Zero Tolerance Knives MODEL :

Smith & Wesson Black SWAT Knife

0562

OAL:

8.13 inches

BLADE LENGTH:

3.5 inches

BLADE MATERIAL:

Elmax stainless steel

WEIGHT:

5.5 ounces

MSRP:

$250

URL:

http://zt.kaiusaltd.com

7.5 inches 3 inches

4034 stainless steel 3.8 ounces $58

www.smith-wesson.com

OAL:

BLADE LENGTH: BLADE MATERIAL: WEIGHT : MSRP: URL:

1 2 3


FLIP THE PAGE FOR MORE DETAILS ON EACH KNIFE.

4 5 6 7


INTERROGATING THE UNUSUAL SUSPECTS CAMPCO

IS SU E

17

UZI MINI STONE WASH

REC O ILW E B .C O M

034

BENCHMADE

300-1 AXIS FLIPPER

TAYLOR

SMITH & WESSON SWAT KNIFE

KERSHAW

KNOCKOUT

RED HORSE

WAR PIG

ZERO TOLERANCE

0562

CRKT

FOSSIL

411: By no means will this UZI-branded fipper win any awards. But, if you’re looking for an everyday-carry (EDC) fipper knife for light-duty tasks that’s also compact and inexpensive, this might be a good ft for your pocket and your wallet. Plus, it comes with a spring-assisted opening and a safety lock. For $20, don’t expect it to hold up to hard use for long.

411: Benchmade combines its patented AXIS lock with a manual fipper opening and a 154CMsteel blade to create an exceptional model that any knife nut can appreciate. The handle is made of textured and contoured G-10 scales with a black-and-blue color scheme. The pocket clip is meant for deep carry and is reversible, though only with the blade tip up. Made in the USA.

411: The S&W SWAT Knife is the black sheep of this bunch. While a traditional fipper’s tab is an extension of the blade’s steel just below the edge, this model’s “tab” is actually a lever that activates the patented MAGIC assisted-opening mechanism. Plus, it comes with a safety lock — appropriate, considering it bears Smith & Wesson’s brand.

411: The Knockout foored us almost immediately, delivering quite a punch right out of the box. OK, end of bad puns. But in all seriousness, we were surprised that there’s far more to this folder than just rugged good looks. It features a sub-frame lock, allowing a larger knife to be incredibly light yet still have a secure lock. And the blade’s Sandvik 14C28N steel performs well. Made in the USA.

411: We could shank a Decepticon with this bad boy. Illinois-based Red Horse Knife Works put some serious handcrafted work into the War Pig, giving it a strong blade made of D2 tool steel and a full titanium handle. (Note: Red Horse offers various options, including a $398 standard version that has a G-10 scale on the non-lock side of the handle.) Made in the USA.

411: While most ZT knives are beefy, the 0562 features a slim profle, but without any reduction in strength. It’s designed by famed knife-maker Rick Hinderer and features his exclusive “slicer” grind, a reversible deep-carry pocket clip, and KVT ball-bearing opening. The handle has a textured G-10 front scale and stonewashed titanium on the back. Made in the USA.

411: Don’t worry, we thought the same thing, too: This is strictly a novelty item, right? With the bone-esque overlay on the handle and the teeth-shaped serrations on the blade, it seemed like designer Flavio Ikoma got his styling cues from a velociraptor. But the Fossil has both form and function, with a decent 8Cr13MoV blade and a good-sized fipper tab/fnger guard.

PROS: Compact and lightweight Though small, handle is comfortable in hand You can thrash on this budget blade all you want without fear of breaking something expensive

PROS: Drop-point blade is razor sharp Flipper turns into a sizeable fnger guard G-10 handle is ergonomic and tough as nails Sits deep in the pocket for a more secure carry

PROS: The MAGIC assistedopening mechanism is smooth and quick Though made of aluminum, the handle has aggressive texturing for a positive grip Affordable price

PROS: It’s unexpectedly light, like a Hummer weighing as much as a Mini Cooper Slim profle means more room in your pocket Kershaw’s SpeedSafe assisted opening is fuid and fast

PROS: Almost indestructible Visual aesthetic Top-quality construction and materials If you have the cash, there are various upgrade options (e.g. stainless Damascus blade, left-handed design, etc.)

PROS: Lightweight for its size The handle feels great in hand while looking elegant to boot We haven’t played much with Elmax stainless steel, but the 0562’s blade performance has allayed any skepticism

PROS: Bone-like G-10 overlay provides an assured grip Knife’s serrations are viciously sharp We applaud CRKT for taking a chance with a wilder visual aesthetic and succeeding in melding it with performance

CONS: Durability seems iffy in the long run A 420-stainless-steel blade is substandard for any knife not used to spread butter Thumb-stud doesn’t always completely open the blade, sometimes causing our thumb to land on the blade’s (dull) serrations

CONS: For almost two C-notes, it should come with a springassisted opening

CONS: Unlike other knives in this group, there’s no true fipper tab and therefore no fnger guard once the blade’s open Though coated and semi-serrated, the blade’s 4034 steel is average at best

CONS: Body is made of aluminum, which doesn’t compare to G-10 or Micarta when it comes to handles

CONS: The fully loaded titanium version we reviewed costs as much as a brand new Glock! Not exactly low-vis, the handle is more than a ½-inch thick

CONS: All these fne features don’t come cheap at two-and-a-half Benjamins For the price tag, where’s the springassisted opening?

CONS: Pocket clip has only one carry position: right-handed with the tip up Thumb-hole on the blade is too narrow and awkwardly placed to be effective as a secondary means of opening the knife


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BRÜGGER & THOMET TO APOLOGIZE FOR INFLICTING THE CUCKOO CLOCK ON THE USA, THE SWISS ARE ABOUT TO SEND US SOME DAMN FINE FIREARMS

BY IAIN HARRISON PHOTOGRAPHY BY RALPH WILHELM

European frearms brands like Heckler & Koch, Beretta, and Sako are, if not household names in the USA, at least familiar among the U.S. gun community. One company that enjoys wide popularity outside these shores, but doesn’t appear on any but the most fnely tuned American radar, is the Swiss frm of Brügger & Thomet. And that’s about to change. While sample guns meandered through the halls of ATF’s tech branch awaiting fnal approval for importation, RECOIL made an exclusive behind-the-scenes visit to the B&T production facilities, tucked away at the foot of the Alps. There, we got to see how its products are made, interview designers and production staff, and, of course, cover the foor of their test range with a generous layer of brass.


THE GUNS B&T USA will be importing three models as its core lineup, after jumping through the necessary import hoops — necessitating alterations from

IS SU E

17

the guns’ original confgurations.

REC O ILW E B .C O M

38

The APC223 is a short-stroke, Although skinny, the TP9 stock is robust enough for hard use and allows fring when folded.

piston-driven carbine along the lines of the FN SCAR 16. The APC9/45 pistol shares many of its features and layout, but as its name suggests is chambered in pistol calibers and operates from a blowback, rather than locked breech, system. After fling the necessary paperwork, we imagine many American buyers will swap out its sling-equipped back plate for one of B&T’s numerous stock offerings, thus returning the gun

APC223

that there’s enough room in there to

to its intended appearance as an short-

The Advanced Police Carbine is

accommodate a 7.62mm barrel, should

barreled rife (SBR). Rounding out the

intended as a direct competitor to the

the market demand. Ahead of the bar-

line will be the MP9, which may be a

latest generation of assault rifes on

rel trunnion is the handguard interface

little more familiar to some readers, as

the world market. With several NATO

— another aluminum extrusion — that

it started life as a Steyr product before

countries looking to replace their aging

attaches via two tenons held in place

being reworked and improved by Swiss

infantry weapons in the next decade,

with Torx screws at the 12 and 6

engineers. It, too, is a 9mm subgun-

the APC has as good a chance as any

o’clock positions. Various handguard

esque pistol, which in its unneutered

of taking a signifcant chunk of that

lengths can be easily swapped in, and

guise spits out a whopping 1,100-plus

market, having already passed several

from a manufacturing standpoint, using

rounds per minute and weighs only 3.4

torture tests and offering all the fea-

an extrusion is a no-brainer. Need an

pounds. Like the slightly larger APC9,

tures commonly requested.

odd-length forearm for a prototype

it will probably wind up being SBR’d,

At the heart of the system is an ex-

under-barrel grenade launcher? No

where it’ll regain its vertical foregrip

truded aluminum receiver that acts as

problem, simply adjust the chop saw

and folding stock.

a shell for the bolt, barrel trunnion, and

to the appropriate setting and whack

recoil spring. And while we didn’t have

a chunk off. The downside to using

do each of these guns look like under

That’s the high-level overview. What

the opportunity to give it the once-over

aluminum, of course, is that the area

the surface? Read on and fnd out.

with a set of calipers, it would appear

around the gas block gets pretty hot


BRÜGGER & THOMET

after a few magazines. We’d prefer a longer forearm for that reason, as it would get the support hand out past the toastiest part of the gas system. Barrels are made by Lothar Walther and are hammer forged with a 1:7 twist and medium profle, tapering gradually from just in front of the chamber and terminating in either a NATO fash-hider or compensator. We were unable to shoot for groups due to range restrictions, but it’s not like LW is famous for producing sewer pipes, so we’d expect accuracy to be on par with competitive piston guns. In most European countries, once a citizen has approval from the authorities to buy a semi-auto rife, barrel

Note coupled polymer magazines, denoting that this is a 9mm version ACP .45 uses HK-style steel mags. Note ambi mag release and bolt catch on the APC223 above.


length is not something with which

California-based fashlight maker,

but as of press date, it’s unclear which

the organs of state concern them-

but it is in fact made on B&T’s CNC

part of the gun the ATF will decide is

selves. Unlike the situation here with

machines, and both companies have

the serialized bit.

our fatuous and arcane NFA laws, the

a handshake agreement not to discuss

European shooter can choose whatever

the intellectual property behind it. Attached to the barrel is a two-

a result, the most popular .223 barrel

position gas block for normal and

of the tried and tested method of a

happens to be just 12.5 inches from

suppressed fre (B&T got its start as a

pair of captive takedown pins. To feld

bolt face to muzzle. Carbines landing

suppressor manufacturer — more on

strip, the user presses out the rear

this later), which houses a gas plug

pin, swings down the lower receiver,

and piston appropriate for the caliber.

and presses down on the buttstock

A .300 Whisper version is available

assembly. After releasing the stock, the

16-inch barrels, but changing them for fresh ones is no more challenging than the same procedure in an AR-15. The

Folding stock locks up tightly and is adjustable for length of pull. Additional models offer adjustable comb height as well.

17 IS SU E

nents, attaching to the upper by means

that uses a shorter gas system and

captive recoil spring is pulled out of its

casual observer might think the APC’s

different gas ports, but unlike an

recess in the bolt carrier, which frees

muzzle brake is supplied by a certain

AR, changing calibers doesn’t just

up the charging handle. B&T adopted

entail swapping the barrel. The

REC O ILW E B .C O M

that houses the fre-control compo-

length tube fts his or her needs — as

on these hallowed shores will sport

40

The lower receiver is a plastic box

a belt-and-suspenders approach to

piston, gas plug, and piston

retaining the handle, which rides in a

spring assembly must all

keyhole slot in the upper. It’s impossi-

be changed as well. From a

ble to remove, even if pulled to the rear

practical standpoint in both

and lined up with the keyhole, unless

guns, it’s much simpler

the recoil spring guide rod is also out

to just swap uppers,

of the gun. But once removed it can be swapped from left to right, depending on the wishes of the user. While the full-auto version of the


BRÜGGER & THOMET APC223 is quite controllable when the

swipe off with either hand, getting the

giggle switch is pushed all the way for-

gun back on safe is more diffcult, and

ward, U.S. customers will have a hard

the safety’s lower edge digs into the

time experiencing the joys of turning

thumb. It’s not the end of the world

live ammo into brass at an acceler-

and an easy fx with a Dremel, but it

ated rate, due to the 11 pages worth

should be taken care of at the factory.

of modifcations made to the civvy

Magazine and bolt-release catches

model. A full-auto bolt carrier won’t ft

are where you’d expect them to be and

the semi receiver, an FA bolt won’t go

are operable with either hand to either

in the SA carrier, and a three-position

dump the STANAG magazine (which

lower won’t line up with a neutered

drops free) or run the bolt forward to

upper. There’s no way to illegally

chamber a round after the bolt locks

make the APC go into automatic mode

back on an empty mag. Seems like

unless you have access to a very well-

the Europeans are fnally realizing the

equipped machine shop, in which case

advantages of a last round hold-open,

you might as well make a machinegun

after overlooking it for decades.

completely from scratch. Not that we’d ever recommend anyone do that.

The other vital user interface (i.e. the stock) is available in many

Trigger components will be familiar

favors — from a weird dogleg device

to anyone with even a passing knowl-

designed to ft under a face-shield to

edge of the AR-15. According to B&T’s

a folding and collapsible unit with an

engineers, these have been tweaked to

adjustable height comb. All are made

give a better let off and are not inter-

from glass-reinforced polymer, are

changeable with Stoner’s original. We

of appropriate length, seem robust

can verify that the pull is very good,

enough for the job, and connect to a

along the lines of a Geissele SSA, and

common receiver back plate that hous-

is a two-stage with crisp 4-ish-pound

es a hydraulic buffer. This buffer cush-

break, and short, distinct reset. As

ions bolt-carrier impact and spreads

far as service rife triggers go, it’s one

recoil over a longer timeframe, making

of the best we’ve tested. Switching

for quicker sight

from safe to fre is done by means of

recovery. Although the

an ambidextrous plastic safety lever

carrier itself is a seri-

— while it has an HK-style curve, it’s

ously chunky piece

smaller and harder to manipulate

of steel, it never

than, say, an MP5. This is

actually bumps

one of the few niggles we

the back plate di-

had about the APC dur-

rectly, due to the

ing our admittedly short

variable valving

time with it. Although

contained within

the safety is easy

the buffer’s hol-

enough to

low piston.


BRÜGGER & THOMET APC9/APC45 Sharing many of the APC223’s guts, the pistol-caliber versions proved to be both reliable and exceptionally softshooting during our range session, despite being blowback designs. The buffer used in the rife is adapted to other calibers to good effect — so good in fact that full-auto mag dumps were as controllable as the locked-breech MP5. Layout and controls are identical to the carbine, meaning that police departments or militaries adopting one version will have reduced training demands when switching to another, as the manual of arms is identical and fewer spares need to be stocked. Further simplifying matters is the use of a common lower receiver for both 9mm and .45 ACP. Despite the .45’s longer case, the difference is made up through the use of thicker, polymer mags for the 9, while the .45 employs thinner, steel ones. At this point, those readers taking the fast train will no doubt wonder if there’s a .40-caliber version (there is, but not in production), and the really quick ones will have already started leaping up and down, hooting at the real possibility of a 10mm — which would be like Christmas and the 4th of July rolled into one. Although the APC9/45 uses the same upper receiver extrusion as the more powerful carbine, there’s no provision for a separate handguard, the designers choosing instead to keep the gun as compact as possible. Suppressor use is expected, and the barrel can be supplied with the user’s choice of interface. The unit tested had an HK tri-lug, but threaded versions are cataloged. To comply with import restrictions, the APC9/45 will be brought into the USA as a semi-auto pistol. If the purchaser wishes to convert it to a short-barreled rife (and once ATF approval is forthcoming), you’ll have only to remove the sling swivel-equipped back plate and swap in a stock.

APC’s backup sights fold into machined pockets in the upper receiver. Note tri-lug suppressor mount.


BRÜGGER & THOMET TP9/MP9-N The same procedure can be used on the MP9-N PDW, which has just been

announced as the personal defense weapon for non-teeth units of the Swiss armed forces. It would seem that the tide of fashion has turned away from dedicated PDW cartridges, such as the FN 5.7x28mm, due to logistical reasons, and the MP9-N is well situated to beneft from this.

The MP9-N shown here will be available to the public as a semi-auto pistol, known as the TP9. It will lack both the three-position selector and vertical foregrip.

Weighing in at just 3.4 pounds

IS SU E

17

unloaded, the little 9 is easy to tote in a

REC O ILW E B .C O M

44

It’s tamed somewhat by the addition

dedicated holster or to carry slung like

On semi-auto, the trigger is OK.

a deadly black plastic man purse. If a

Not great, and certainly not as good

of the fat suppressor that’s offered

“murse” isn’t your thing, or if the sight

as the APC variants as it’s hampered

as an option, but it’s still not as

of a nekkid gun is enough to induce

by the gun’s almost-bullpup-style

controllable as the APC alternative,

conniptions in the local populace,

layout, but it’s perfectly adequate for

especially when the latter’s excel-

then B&T offers a laptop-style bag

its role as a very compact PDW. Its

lent trigger is used to make double

that enables close-protection person-

tiny size is made possible through

and triple taps. Despite this, we still

nel to keep one hand on the weapon

the use of an innovative, short-recoil,

managed to keep all our rounds on

and shoot through the side of the bag

rotary-locked breech, which means

an IPSC target at 20 meters after

into an unsuspecting threat. Brass is

that the reciprocating parts don’t

slapping in a full mag and pinning

ejected into a case catcher to eliminate

need to be as heavy as a blowback

the bang lever to the rear. As a PDW

the chances of an empty bouncing back

gun. In it, the barrel and breech block

then, it shows plenty of promise, but

into the ejection port. Does it work?

move backwards under recoil, guided

in the U.S. version, where it will be

Why yes, yes it does. We dumped a

by a front trunnion that also acts as a

hampered by the lack of full-auto ca-

couple of mags through it (which at

suppressor interface. After about a ¼

pability, it’ll probably be relegated to

1,100 rpm, doesn’t take very long) and

inch, a cam pin causes the barrel to

the role of range toy. Not that there’s

got a bunch of holes in the three tar-

rotate and unlock, allowing the breech

anything wrong with that.

gets downrange, along with a huge grin.

block to continue to the rear, ejecting the empty cartridge and picking up a

catalogs about 250 suppressor

fresh one.

designs and 2,000 accessories

B&T has a close relationship with

Brügger & Thomet make suppressors for HK, Beretta and Accuracy International. Their pistol cans will be introduced to the USA at SHOT Show and will be manufactured on U.S. soil.

For a 35-year-old company that

(such as rail systems, grips, and

Aimpoint, so most of their guns leave

sight mounts for everything from an

the factory equipped with T1 Micros

MP7 to an M2), Brügger & Thomet

already zeroed. The mini red-dot

has had a very low profle in the

feels right at home on the MP9-N

USA. By mid January 2015, produc-

and is at the correct height when

tion models of the three frearms

the folding stock is deployed. When

featured here should be hitting deal-

shot from the shoulder, rather than

ers’ shelves, and the last European

from inside a messenger bag, the

manufacturer to come to the States

MP9-N jumps around like a hyperac-

will be making inroads in the world’s

tive kid on a pogo stick, due to its

largest frearms market. Remember,

light weight and high rate of fre.

you heard it here frst...


GEAR AS PREPARED AS YOU ARE.

BLACKHAWK!® DIVERSION® BAGS AND PACKS feature advanced protective engineering, yet mimic everyday items for discreet carry of firearms and other sensitive items © 2014 BLACKHAWK!® NORFOLK, VA U.S.A.

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SPEC BOX

BRÜGGER & THOMET

BRÜGGER & THOMET

APC223/556 URL

www.bt-ag.ch CALIBER

5.56mm NATO BARREL LENGTH

16 inches MSRP

$ $2,640-3,270

ACCESSORIES

$753 law enforcment only

PRICE AS FEATURED

$ $3,240-$3,870

30.7 inches (stock open) WEIGHT (EMPTY)

7.7 pounds MAGAZINE CAPACITY

30

BRÜGGER & THOMET

APC9/45

IS SU E

17

SPEC BOX

Aimpoint T1 B&T Rotex Suppressor

OVERALL LENGTH

URL

www.bt-ag.ch

46

CALIBER

9mm Luger / .45 ACP

REC O ILW E B .C O M

BARREL LENGTH

9.5 inches MSRP

$ $2,250-$2,500

ACCESSORIES

SPEC BOX

Aimpoint T1 B&T MP5 Suppressor B&T Vertical Foregrip

$753 $800-$1,200 $85

PRICE AS FEATURED

$ $3,585-$3,885

OVERALL LENGTH

15.5 inches WEIGHT (EMPTY)

5.5 pounds MAGAZINE CAPACITY

30

BRÜGGER & THOMET

TP9/MP9-N CALIBER

9mm Luger BARREL LENGTH

5.1 inches OVERALL LENGTH

12 inches WEIGHT (EMPTY)

3.4 pounds

URL

MAGAZINE CAPACITY

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30 (20-round shown) ACCESSORIES

Aimpoint T1 B&T Suppressor

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PRICE AS FEATURED

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SAFETY DISCLAIMER

The concepts shown here are for illustrative purposes only. Seek professional training or instruction before attempting any techniques discussed or shown in this story.


CRUSHING COMBATIVES FORMER NAVY SEAL DOM RASO GIVES RECOIL AN EXCLUSIVE FIRST LOOK AT HIS DYNAMIS SYSTEM BY CONRAD BUI PHOTOGRAPHY BY JAKE SWANSON

Dom Raso is the kind of guy you’d want on your side when the shit has not only hit the fan, but is spraying everywhere. He has studied combatives since his youth, starting with Shaolin Kenpo and branching out into various other styles, such as the grappling systems of judo and jiu-jitsu. instructor. As impressive as that is, his martial arts studies

IS S U E

aren’t the most impressive accomplishments on his résumé:

17

After intense training, he eventually became a Thai boxing

Raso racked up a ton of real-life experience having served 12 years as a U.S. Navy SEAL.

provides not only tactical training, security services, and consultancy, but also offers gear, combatives seminars, and physical ftness guidance. Recently, RECOIL was invited to attend Raso’s Dynamis Combatives Pistol Course, which taught skills needed to win a fght inside “spitting distance.” It aimed to teach a combination of brutally effective unarmed combative skills with handgun techniques in extreme close quarters. Not a typical shooting class, this seminar tested the students’ mindset and abilities through simulations of real-life altercations. In between excruciating sets of strikes and quick draws, we asked the former SEAL to share with our readers some of his “crush everything” tactics that he’s gleaned from his real-world experience in the trenches. He offered three key Dynamis principles that can save your life: situational awareness, striking ability, and the Dynamis Draw.

REC O ILW E B .C O M

Now out of the service, he’s currently an NRA spokesman and heads Dynamis Alliance, a company he founded that

49


can so I can observe my surroundings.

ber to keep your chin down and shoul-

It’s better to walk with a wall to your

ders up and to place your dominant-

side than to walk in between two guys

side leg back for a stable base (if

— and that only works if you’re aware.”

you’re right-handed, shift your right

Dom reveals that predators give

leg back). This stance will protect your

off signals when assessing you as

head, get your weapons online, and

prey. There are also cues right before

will make you appear non-aggressive.

someone throws a punch. (See sidebar

This deceptive “don’t hurt me” posture

for body language cues.) Practicing

gets you ready for battle while also

situational awareness is like having an

telling everyone else that you’re not the

early warning system to avoid trouble,

instigator — this is important in our

giving you an ace up your sleeve when

age of cellphone footage, YouTube, and

the trouble starts. The more you prac-

security cameras.

tice, the louder your alarm. “If some-

Issue a few loud verbal commands,

thing doesn’t feel right, that’s it! You

such as “Step back!” or “Stop!” If the

must act. Do not bury that feeling,”

attacker continues to threaten you and

Dom says. “We’re not being paranoid

move into your space, then it’s time

here, just aware.”

to unleash two simple but effective strikes:

IS SU E

17

REACH OUT AND TOUCH SOMEONE

REC O ILW E B .C O M

50

YOUR FINAL NOTICE The frst (and most important) principle is situational awareness. “Look, violence is going to be a very small percentage of your life. I’m just trying to make it an even smaller percentage,” Raso says. “If you’re aware of your surroundings, you may not have to draw your gun.” Turn on your radar anytime you set foot outside your

Put away that damn phone and pay attention! Dom Raso emphasizes that situational awareness is the most important principle of combatives. Being able to perceive not only potential threats, but also your environment in general, can go a long way in defending yourself and your loved ones.

house and take note of your environment. Without awareness, no amount of physical training will help you survive. Your gun and training will be useless if you’re coldcocked and lying unconscious on the pavement. “I’m constantly aware of my surroundings,” Raso adds. “I look for walls and place my back to them whenever I

A face smash is an effective strike that can stop an attacker, create space, or give you time to draw. Bend your fngers forward to fow into an eye gouge for bonus points.

Face Smash: Fingers are spread and slightly bent. Hit with your palm and

Having situational awareness will

incorporate an eye gouge if you have

reduce your odds of facing violent situ-

the opportunity. “You want to throw

ations. Unfortunately some situations

your entire body and twist your hips

cannot be avoided and require violence

into this strike,” Raso says. “We use

of action.

the palm because with a fst you may

Get ready to protect yourself

break it, and

by bringing your hands up with

it’s a bitch to

your palms facing forward to

operate your

protect your computer (your

gun with a

head and brain). Also, remem-

broken hand.”


CRUSHING COMBATIVES

HOW TO READ A BAD GUY LIKE A BOOK Whether he knows it or not, a predator will give off cues while searching for prey, says Dom Raso, head of Dynamis Alliance and a 12-year veteran of the U.S. Navy SEALs. These signs should grab your attention like a neon sign if your situational awareness is up to par. According to Raso, here are some behavioral cues you need to watch out for: Hard Stare or Group Stare: One or more people keep staring at you for unusually long periods. Hidden Hands: Someone approaches with his hand in a pocket or behind his back. Correlation of Movement: As you get up to leave, one or more people also get up to Deceptive Kinesis: Be cautious of randomly walks up to you and asks, “Hey, man, you have the time?” The question attention. This could be a set-up. So, observe the person and ignore the question. This Hammer Fist: You can drop a ham-

will help you assess the situation instead of giving a knee-jerk response.

mer fst on your attacker if your hands

If you’re totally clueless and missed all

are positioned higher. Twist your hips, step into the strike, and drop your

the telltale signs that you’ve been marked

weight. Make sure to follow through

as a target, there are still some signals

with a big circular motion. “Your fne

to watch for before an attacker strikes. If

motor skills are greatly reduced when

someone is in your face, giving you one or

you’re in a fght, so this hammer fst

more of the following signs, don’t ignore

works perfectly,” Raso says. “I’ll use

them or turn your back because it means

any point along my forearm to my fst

trouble is just a few moments away.

for this strike, and I’m aiming at the

Verbally Aggressive: Someone blows up,

whole side of his head on this one. Forget about targeting his outer eyelash.

Why even strike if you have a

The pinpoint stuff is too hard to use.”

frearm? Why not pull out your .45

When executing either technique, it

and, bang, settle it? “If someone is

must be performed with intent. Dom

too close to me when I need to draw

reminds us, “I’m hitting this person

my gun, I have to fnd a way to back

because my life or the lives of my

them off or we’ll end up fghting for my

loved ones are in danger. I’m going to

gun,” Dom says. Strikes can provide

throw my entire body with intensity

extra time for a clear and safe way to

into each of these strikes.”

access your weapon.

Dom Raso demonstrates how to unleash a hammer fst, then author Conrad Bui gives it a try. This gross motor skill is easy to do, hard to forget under stress, and a brutal way of slowing or stopping an attacker.

screaming at you. Shifty Eyes: The person checks around for buddies or the police. Weight Drop: Watch for strong-side loading, e.g. he steps back with his right leg to load up his right punch. Pumping Up: To prepare for an attack, a bad guy might start breathing heavily or using excessive profanity. Clenched Fist(s): Get ready for the boom!

51 REC O ILW E B .C O M

makes you think, hesitate, or divert your

17

deceptive actions, such as someone

IS S U E

leave. You cross the street and they follow.


CRUSHING COMBATIVES ENTER THE DYNAMIS Gun-drawing practice is often performed in a sterile environment — like in our home or at a fat range. We imagine our attacker is far away, giving us plenty of time to access our weapon without a hitch. Real street situations are not always so perfect. You can be

Dom simultaneously shields his noggin and neck while striking his assailant in the chest with his left elbow and clearing his shirt. He then draws and can respond appropriately depending on what the attacker does next.

caught by surprise or rushed quickly by your attacker. In close-quarter-combat range, drawing your weapon incorrectly can go south fast. In extremely close range, your enemy now has access to your arms, wrists, and possibly your gun. Now you’re locked in a life-and-death struggle for your frearm. So how do you access your weapon effectively in “spitting distance,” as Dom calls it? The Dynamis Draw can be your salvation. “A lot of things in the current martial arts world are ancient,” Raso says. “There’s not much new under the sun. I created the Dynamis Draw because I saw a need for it. No one has done this yet. I’m really excited about it.”

IS SU E

17

To perform the Dynamis Draw:

REC O ILW E B .C O M

52

From the “non-aggressive” stance, bring your non-dominant elbow horizontally up to your face, hiding your chin (like Dracula). Keep your forward elbow pointed at the threat as you pull up your shirt using both hands. This will now reveal your gun (and abs, if you have a six-pack like Dom). Your forward elbow is now protecting your face, neck, and chin. You can also use said elbow to ram into your attacker, giving you more space. Get a good grip and draw your gun to your rib, keeping the muzzle pointed at your attacker. Utilize a slight palm-up grip (like doing a bicep curl, keeping the gun slide away from your body). Drop your body weight for a stable platform. Assess the situation and act appropriately once your gun is drawn.

LEARN AND TRAIN Just like any other skill, training the draw on a regular basis will improve your odds of coming out alive. “People who are serious about combat need to train as often as they can,” Raso says. “What you did your last training session is most likely what you will use. If you cannot train that day, at least visualize what you would do if something were to happen.” These three principles are only the tip of the iceberg of Raso’s teaching, and it’s a good place to start. The Dynamis Alliance offers courses in hand-to-hand combat, knife fghting, frearms, and situational training. “I’m constantly learning and researching,” Raso says. “This course next year will be different because of what I learn.”


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CRUSHING COMBATIVES

the next best thing — the principles and techniques of a

GET OFF YOUR ASS

12-year veteran of the Navy SEALs.

It’s an advantage to have your

So if the proverbial manure ever hits the oscillation in your life and Dom Raso is not there to help you out, have

feet under you during a violent Dom Raso’s Dynamis System isn’t all about striking, though. The former SEAL puts his students through realistic scenarios using protective equipment, training pistols, and ATK’s Force on Force marker rounds.

1

encounter. Staying on your feet gives you more choices: fght, run for cover, or just plain run. But since an altercation is unpredictable, sometime you might just fnd yourself on your derriere. There might be a curb, stool, or a thousand other things a bipedal humanoid may trip over. How do you get up safely without having your teeth kicked

2

in? It’s “tactical stand-up” to the rescue. 1. Perform a sit-up as you lean 17

over to one side with your top IS SU E

hand up protecting your face. 2. Post on your bottom palm, the palm closest to the foor. Extend your bottom leg

54

to keep the opponent at a

REC O ILW E B .C O M

distance and bend your top

3

leg so you can post on that foot. 3. Pull your extended leg back under you as you explode into a wide stable stance (so you don’t end up on your rear again). Keep your hands up to preserve your rugged good looks.

SOURCE

Dom Raso, Dynamis Alliance: www.dynamisalliance.com

ABOUT THE AUTHOR Dr. Conrad Bui is a writer, martial artist, and gun enthusiast based in San Francisco. As a Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu grappler, he medaled at the 2009 Pan-American Jiu-Jitsu Championship and won gold at the 2012 U.S. Open. He’s also a Jeet Kune Do instructor with more than 25 years of martial-arts experience.

3b


17 IS SU E REC O ILW E B .C O M

56

KEL-TEC CREATES A BULLPUP FOR THE REST OF US

BY DUGAN ASHLEY PHOTOGRAPHY BY NATALIE CAKE


You’re staring into the trunk of your

defnitely don’t want errant ejected

Toyota AE86 urban assault vehicle/mo-

brass damaging the surrounding

bile arms room. A mission just came

fne-china displays. As if that wasn’t

down the pipe then self-destructed via

enough, the United States has been

Snapchat. You’re going to be perform-

fooded with cheap foreign goods, and

ing remote brain surgery on multiple

there’s no way you’re further contribut-

hostile targets in a densely populated,

ing to the relentless infux of heathen

urban antique shop. The environment

communist products. You’re going all

will require the negotiation of tight cor-

American on this one.

ners and expansive corridors. Engage-

Who hasn’t been faced with a

ment distances range from bad breath

scenario like this? What weapon will

to 200 meters. You can’t remember

you choose? Thankfully Kel-Tec has

if you’re right or left handed, so you’ll

addressed exactly this type of conun-

need an ambidextrous 5.56mm rife

drum with the RDB (Rife, Downward

— one that’s low profle and maneu-

Ejecting Bullpup) — a rife so interest-

verable, but capable of reaching out

ing and unusual that RECOIL had

and terminally fondling the bad guys.

no choice but to perform a full and

You’re a badass, but you’re polite. You

thorough evaluation. So, what exactly is the RDB and how is it different from the slowly expanding list of bullpups that have come into that question will be to focus on

IS S U E

its deviation from well-known bullpup

17

out to date? The easiest way to delve

designs of the past. Let’s begin with loading procedures.

57 REC O ILW E B .C O M


STUFF IT AND SLAP IT

to perform the coveted “charging-

The RDB feeds from STANAG

handle slap” with their support hand

magazines in a location behind the

during administrative loading — just

ranges. The rife is piston operated

grip (duh, it’s a bullpup) and in front of

like Bruce Willis in Die Hard!

and seems naturally balanced and

You probably noticed that we wrote

a downward-facing ejection chute. The

have their weight concentrated toward

port of the FN P90. It’s also similar to

make mention of that because, unlike

the shoulder. The weight and balance

the P90 in that chamber inspection

the MP5, the RDB features a last

contribute to quick muzzle recovery

is accomplished by inverting the rife

round bolt hold-open. It also has an

during fring. With minimal concentra-

with the fring-hand and peering into

ambi bolt release just above the mag-

tion, we were able to repeatedly con-

the ejection port while cycling the bolt

well, at the natural point of contact for

nect on 8-inch (face sized) steel at 40

the thumb following all types of mag

meters with controlled pairs and half-

swappery. The bolt release can be used

second splits. The fre selector was a

as a bolt catch to lock the bolt open in

topic of debate among shooters during

conjunction with the charging handle,

testing. Some found the selector to

making the manual of arms similar to

be awkward, requiring repositioning

the Tavor, but with the added fexibility

of the fring hand, while some found

to perform manipulations like an MP5.

the selector to be convenient both in

kissing your sister — a little awkward at frst, but the more you do it, the more you’ll like it. The end-user will fnd that charging the weapon is one of the highlights of the RDB experience. You’re going to have plenty of options! The RDB’s 17

non-reciprocating charging handle is IS SU E

light even for a bullpup, which typically

“administrative” loading above. We

ated, clearing the RDB is kind of like

REC O ILW E B .C O M

We found the RDB to excel at close

chute is reminiscent of the ejection

with the support-hand. For the uniniti-

58

BRASS TO THE GRASS

similar to the HK MP5 in function. It can be pulled back and rotated upward to lock the bolt open, then slapped downward to load a cartridge. The handle itself can be swapped from the left to the right side of the weapon during disassembly. This means that southpaw shooters will fnally be able

The RDB’s height over bore is a little taller than a typical AR, so mounts like this Warne RAMP take a little getting used to. The good news is that there’s plenty of rail space for a set of low mount rings.


RDB 5.56

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59 REC O ILW E B .C O M


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17

its location and 30-degree throw. All

REC O ILW E B .C O M

60

found the engagement of the selector was lacking in positivity and mushier than last week’s mashed taters. The selector defnitely engages with more passivity than that of the Tavor, the crossbolt selector of the AUG, or the rotary selector of the AR-15.

Picatinny rail remains attached to the barrel during feld stripping, so no loss of zero occurs. Note position of hammer at rear of lower receiver, contributing to awesomeness.

12 o’clock over the barrel at the end

a frst-draft production model and a

of the handguard. Gas can be adjusted

prototype. The production model failed

using a 5.56mm round. We ran an AAC

to reliably eject PMAGs while the pro-

Mini 4 suppressor through most of the

totype kicked out mags of all favors.

evaluation — an especially kick-ass

We later learned the prototype had

complement to the RDB. Even during

been hand-sanded, so even if Kel-Tec

mag dumps, a suppressed RDB will not

doesn’t address this issue, sand paper

vomit gas back into the shooter’s face,

is pretty cheap…and we all know that “bitchez love crafts.”

The downward ejection of the RDB

a pleasant surprise especially after

is an awesome feature. There, we said

years of shooting the spitting cobra

it. Brass ejects near the shooters arm-

that is the suppressed AR.

pit and emerges with enough authority

The magazine release is a stamped

The RDB features a 17.2-inch button-cut, 4140, nitrided steel barrel. It’s lightweight, having a minor diam-

to allow fre in various non-standard

steel push-release lever. It’s actu-

eter of 0.560 inch (forward of the gas

positions, such as urban prone. Or

ated with the rear of the fring hand

block) and 0.625 inch under the hand-

even completely upside down, which

similarly to the Tavor, except that the

guard. The muzzle is threaded ½x28

when performed, projects a glorious

RDB’s mag release travels linearly

with a threaded collar, which negates

fountain of brass into the air. The util-

rearward instead of pivoting on a

the use of crush/peel washers when

ity of downward ejecting 5.56mm is

fulcrum. This is an advantage over

indexing muzzle devices. Firing M855

only limited by your imagination, but

the Tavor in that unintentional mag

ball from the supported prone, I aver-

it’ll defnitely come in handy during

drops should be even less likely. Dur-

aged about 3.5 to 4.5 MOA fve-round

CQB and vehicle mounted fring. The

ing testing, we found that aluminum

groups at 100 meters. (Note: I’m a 34

fip side to this is that if you rap-

STANAG mags and Gen 3+ PMAGs

out of 40 kind of guy on Army qualif-

idly fre two mags from prone, you’ll

functioned fawlessly in the RDB. Gen

cation ranges.) Another more-refned

quickly fnd yourself lying on top of 60

2 PMAGs failed to fully seat due to the

shooter was able to attain 1.5 MOA

pieces of hot brass.

raised contact points on the rear of

groups using Black Hills rounds loaded

the magazine, and several varieties of

with 69-grain Sierra MatchKings from

continuous, giving the shooter a great

bananas that were tested didn’t lock

the same rife. The RDB we tested had

deal of fexibility in how much or little

in at all because, of course, bananas

a 1:9 twist, but future production guns

they choose to gas their weapon. The

aren’t magazines. We tested two

will be 1:7 which should help stabilize

valve is a traditional drum, located at

RDB samples during our evaluation,

the longer projectiles.

Gas adjustment on the RDB is


RDB 5.56

We evaluated the RDB with both a Trijicon TA33 3x ACOG with an In-

IS S U E

sight Technologies PEQ-15 mounted

17

the Vortex Razor HD 1-6x as well as

in series. We experienced zero issues with optic interference on the RDB’s the RDB in general. We love and hate the RDB’s trigger. It’s innovative — many bullpups use crude extension bars to engage the sear, while the RDB contains its trigger and sear in a pack like the Tavor. Despite the use of a co-located sear and trigger, we found the pull to be unpredictable and sluggish, requiring the user to defeat multiple walls during its course of travel. The trigger is a plastic composite material that adds an element of fex, and when combined with the resistance of the sear engagement, seems to promote vertical shot dispersion. KelTec informed us that a certain (unnamed) trigger manufacturer may be offering an aftermarket trigger pack for the RDB. Even with the stock trigger, we wouldn’t say it’s bad or worse than other contemporary bullpups on the market.

REC O ILW E B .C O M

controls and zero malfunctions with

61


RDB 5.56 occurs is isolated mostly in the front of the handguard. The RDB has multiple large attachment hoops for HK-style hooks or cord slings. However, there are no QD cups on the rife. So for the diehard QD fans, you’ll just have to hang lead weights on the gun, which is basically the same thing. The bolt of the RDB is based on Stoner’s seven-lug, rotating-bolt design with the extractor at the 6 o’clock position. The bolt carrier is inspired by the CETME/HK G3 design, with a single return spring feeding through the back of the carrier and a tappet rod projecting out of the front. The front of the carrier makes contact with a tappet cup inside the gas block.

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The RDB gives the offcial designa-

REC O ILW E B .C O M

62

These components combine to make

tion of “frearm” to its stamped-steel

up the RDB’s inline, short-stroke

receiver cover. This will allow Kel-Tec

piston system. Guns seem to love

to offer caliber conversions and other

inline design elements, so we think

aftermarket OEM parts without the

this system is kind of genius. Next, we

customer needing to modify or replace

should mention the hammer, which is

the actual regulated frearm. The lower

one of the wildest features of the RDB.

and handguard are made of glass im-

Kel-Tec went “full Outback Steak-

pregnated Zytel, which does a good job

house” on this — no rules, just right.

of enclosing the rife, keeping weight

The hammer is housed all the way in

low, and protecting the weapon from

the back of the lower, behind the ejec-

real-world trauma. After a 90-round

tion port. When it’s released, it pivots

string of sustained fre, the tempera-

over the top of the ejection chute to

ture of the handguard was no warmer

impact the fring pin. This makes the

than what you’d expect of any compa-

RDB’s internals super-effcient in

rable semi-auto. Any heat buildup that

their orientation. In fact, much of the


RDB 5.56 RDB’s length is only present to satisfy the NFA’s Orwellian minimum length requirement of 26 inches. The design itself seems fully capable of being a mind-blowingly short, micro-bullpup.

WHAT DOES IT ALL MEAN? The bottom line is that there’s so much crazy-awesome-shit going on inside the RDB with every pull of the trigger, we can’t possibly cover it all in one article. The mere fact that you could perform charging handle slaps in the mirror while screaming, “Yippee Ki Yay” all day long should convince any sane person to purchase this weapon immediately at any price.

SPEC BOX

Luckily for you, the RDB is antici-

an AK variant, but dare I say the RDB

pated to retail for around $1,500. With

may be a close third? We anticipate

so many manufacturers regurgitating

the RDB to be a highly sought-after

clones of Stoner’s AR-15, it’s liberating

bullpup when it hits store shelves and

to see American companies like Kel-

should probably be purchased on sight.

Tec, churning out entirely new designs

This being Kel-Tec, however, we should

with every product they release. I think

probably add the qualifer “if you ever

every shooter should own an AR-15 and

see one” to the end of that sentence.

KEL-TEC

RPB

URL

www.keltecweapons.com

CALIBER

.223 Rem BARREL LENGTH

17.4 inches MSRP

ACCESSORIES

Vortex Razor HD 1-6x24 Warne Ramp 30mm Mount Magpul MBUS Pro Magpul AFG

$1,900 $188 $190 $35

$ $1,500 PRICE AS FEATURED

$ $3,813

OVERALL LENGTH

27.4 inches WEIGHT (EMPTY)

6.9 pounds MAGAZINE CAPACITY

30 rounds


ROLLIN’ DOWN RODEO WITH A SHOTGUN... COUNTERINTUITIVE TIPS FROM THE DEATH VALLEY MAGAZINE MOBILE SCOUT CLASS BY DAVE MERRILL PHOTOGRAPHY BY Q CONCEPTS

If there’s anyone who knows a thing or two about rolling down roads in the Third World with no backup, it’s James Price. James has been in the PMC game (AKA private military company industry) for more than a decade. He has run missions all over the world, including over 600 in Iraq alone. So naturally we jumped at the chance to attend one of his mobile scout classes taught recently through his DVM (Death Valley Magazine) Training Center. While it was chock full of great information, we thought we’d bring you some of the more counterintuitive lessons learned. Now, we’re not going to pretend that all of these are going to be applicable things go very sideways and you’re forced to protect your loved ones while get-

IS S U E

ting out of Dodge.

17

in your everyday life, but they should give you something to chew on — should

67 REC O ILW E B .C O M


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ROLLIN’ DOWN RODEO WITH A SHOTGUN...

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68

“GANGSTER” SHOOTING ACTUALLY HAS MERIT No, this isn’t about turning a handgun completely sideways while grabbing your crotch, or even about using human physiology for more accurate offhand pistol fre. It’s about stopping the rife from falling out of the truck. While you’re tooling around in vehicles, slings get in the way and restrict movement. This is why so often you see protective services detail (PSD) teams running rubber bands around buttstocks: to keep the sling from getting snagged. Unless you’re rolling in a panel van, space limitations are going to force you to extend your rife out the window to shoot. First, you have to remember that your car is likely already going to be moving, or will be moving in short order,

Maintaining control of a long gun and delivering effective fre from within the restrictive confnes of a moving vehicle will be challenging under the best of circumstances.

the rife so that the magazine bisects

isn’t going to smack the inside of the

the angle made at the bottom corner

door as easily or bounce up and down,

of the window at roughly 45 degrees.

hitting the door frame.

Lean into it and put some weight on

What are the downsides of your

the gun. While this won’t help you if

rife mag hitting the frame? It forces

an oncoming vehicle hits your rife

you to fght for control of your rife, or

(though if you’re wearing your sling,

perhaps even lose it. Remember to be

feel like you’re climbing aboard a me-

you’ll be in a larger world of hurt), it

aware of trajectory shifts that occur

chanical bull.

does mean that while you’re inevitably

when you fre your rife from an uncon-

jostled back and forth, the magazine

ventional angle.

if you’re sending rounds downrange. Rapid acceleration, bumps, and other obstacles all mean that your ride will

To counter this, offset and angle


ROLLIN’ DOWN RODEO WITH A SHOTGUN... CHECKPOINT PERSONNEL (USUALLY) DON’T WANT TO FIGHT While there are certainly some exceptions to this lesson — Rwanda springs

Stressed, bored, miserable, often adversarial local nationals can make every checkpoint a dangerous challenge.

immediately to mind — it holds true as a general rule. Unlike what most U.S. military personnel experience overseas, where most checkpoints manned by local personnel are simply ignored, James usually had to stop at each one along his way. Non-DOD and state convoys rarely have the luxury of just blasting by at high speed. This gave him a lot of insight.

all the while remaining ready for the

this one, but when you look down, your

worst case scenario. “We’re used to

peripheral vision actually widens. Quite

people staffng checkpoints oftentimes

lying with our words,” Price says. “It’s

often at a checkpoint, you may be

are really seeking acknowledgment of

much harder to do that with a language

asked to physically leave the vehicle

barrier, so learn to lie with your body.”

to check paperwork, talk to the guard

Like dogs vying for control of a pack,

their dominance. Any private in any army will agree that crappy weather, boredom, and long hours will exacer-

IS SU E

17

bate negative attitudes. So while there

REC O ILW E B .C O M

70

may be much posturing, sometimes the best idea is to remove your own ego and placate them as much as possible,

Successfully negotiating a potentially hostile checkpoint may require a submissive demeanor that belies increased SA and a readiness to act violently.

commander, etc. When walking you

LOOKING SLIGHTLY DOWNWARD INCREASES YOUR PERIPHERAL VISION Now we’re sure there is some evolutionary or biological reason for

should keep your head slightly down. This not only expresses the desired less-dominant posture, but also increases the amount of activity you can take in visually.


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ROLLIN’ DOWN RODEO WITH A SHOTGUN...

REC O ILW E B .C O M

72 Testing this for yourself is incredibly easy. Just look forward and extend your arms until you can no longer see them in your peripheral vision. Now tilt your head and check again. See? It’s not much, but any increase in motion detection could save your life. James referred to this one as “an old PSD trick.”

NOTHING IS REALLY BULLETPROOF Perhaps you’re already familiar with this one, but it bears repeating: Nothing is truly bulletproof. There are only bullet-resistant materials. Given the proper caliber, type of projectile, distance, time, and repetition, one can chew through almost anything with a frearm. Once the lead starts fying, the clock starts ticking. As such, even

Know the ballistics of what is around you. Some well-armored vehicles protect only the passengers and have no armor around the engine, leaving them vulnerable to a mobility kill.

lay down competent fre. The more

ambidextrous shooting techniques.

materiel a bullet has to pass through,

Engines and wheels tend to work well

the greater the likelihood that it will

against conventional small arms, rela-

not penetrate or its trajectory will

tive to unarmored doors and windows,

be deviated. Since available cover

but anything is better than standing in

and concealment dictates shooting

the open and exposing yourself. Consider also that the troops of

with armored vehicles you need to

locations, we practiced various forms

utilize the best cover available, while

of unconventional positions such as

developing nations tend to be poorly

still being able to move effciently and

modifed kneeling, rollover prone, and

trained, disciplined, and equipped by


(2 & ( 7 ,& 7 23 35 7 6 1 2 3 ( : < 5 $ ,0 ,/ $ 5 ' 2 0 < .(

0$ * / 8 3 2 7 6 5 9% . &

+ 6 / ,$ 7 & 7$ < 7 / ( & $ 5 %  3 ) 2 7 & $ 5( ,/ 5

35 7 6 1 2 3 ( : < 5 $ ,0 , 9 ' ( = 8 0 % 4 / $ &   35 7 6 1 2 3 ( : < 5 $ ,0 , 9 ' ( = 8 0 % 4 / $ &  

06 0 8 0 / 7 = 2 + ( ,) 1 . 5 $ % .$ 6 3 ( 0 5 2 / & $ 7 * ,1 86

35 7 6 1 2 3 ( : < 5 $ ,0 ³'   ;    ´ 2 / % ,$ 8 ,1 3 ( . 6 7 5 2 6+ &3 6 7 & 8 ' 2 5 * $ 0   ;    ' 5  7$ $ ( * 2 5 3 & 6 ( + & 8 2 3 * 0$

7$ $ ( * 2 5 3 & 5 & ( 7 / 8 6 $ ,' 3 5$

$ ( * 2 5 3 & 7$

6 9 / * 5 & ( 7 2 35

+ 6 / ,$ 7 & 7$ ,.< * / 3 2 5 ' ; (

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0, < . 1 2 0 & ( 3 6 / . 6 $ 0 / 8 6.

75 & ( 3 6 8 6 1 3 ,/ & $ 7  

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ROLLIN’ DOWN RODEO WITH A SHOTGUN... Western standards. If you’ve had a few afternoons’ worth of trigger time on an AK in your entire career, perhaps sending a grand total of 50 rounds downrange, which target are you going to choose? The big, shiny, stationary one sitting and idling at the checkpoint, or the small mobile one that’s wearing subdued colors, making best use of cover, and shooting back? Bear in mind that vehicles themselves tend to be bullet magnets, so it may be best to un-ass the area around them if better cover is available.

USE YOUR DOMINANT HAND WHEN RELOADING RIFLES No, not just when running onehanded injury drills — but all the time when using a rife from a vehicle. We

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might as well come clean and say

REC O ILW E B .C O M

74

outright that we had a terrible time doing this one. It’s a skill we’ve never practiced; our head and hands stuttered trying to process this completely foreign action. Before you lose your head, allow us to explain: Remember all that earlier talk about rapid acceleration and shaking? The same thing is going to happen when you run out of ammunition. Keeping your support hand on the rife allows you better control during the violent movement of the vehicle. Just like when mitigating recoil, the support hand is used to physically pull the rife against your body for stabilization. You may feel goofy doing it the frst few times, especially if the vehicle is stationary, but it’s worth trying out for yourself. For intuitive lessons learned, here’s the bottom line: Everything is harder in a cramped space. And everything is 10 times harder in a cramped space when taking evasive action.

SOURCE

DVM Training Center: www.deathvalleymag.com


17 IS SU E REC O ILW E B .C O M

76

SIONICS WEAPON SYSTEMSâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; LIGHTWEIGHT PATROL RIFLE BY TOM MARSHALL PHOTOGRAPHY BY KENDA LENSEIGNE


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77 REC O ILW E B .C O M

Obesity is a major health problem in

in AR ultra-lights. This is evidenced

weeks ago with a list of specs for a

America. We all want to lose weight,

in things like carbon-fber-wrapped

rife build — a sub-6-pound rife.

right? The AR-15, a rife that has un-

barrels, modular direct attachment

The Sionics folks said, “We’re not

doubtedly taken on a personality of its

systems, such as KeyMod and M-LOK,

100-percent sure we can get below 6

own, is no exception. In fact, in recent

and the use of polymer in everything

pounds, but we can get close.” Then

years “the black rife” has had much

from fip-sights to lower receivers.

they asked us to wait a bit, because

more success slimming down than this

Equipment selection is a form of mis-

they were working on something that

author has.

sion analysis. Gear up based on needs,

might ft the bill. Less than a month

not wants. Effciency is king and less

later, they released the Patrol LW, a

AR looked like just last decade? Miles

is more — ammo and alcohol notwith-

16-inch mid-length gas rife weighing

of quad-rail, lasers the size of TV

standing.

in at 5 pounds, 14 ounces. For refer-

Do you remember what the average

remotes, D-cell Maglites — you get

Sionics Weapons Systems exempli-

ence, my son was born at 8 pounds,

the idea. In the last couple of years,

fes this principle, not just with its

11 ounces. Given the choice, perhaps

there’s been a distinct shift back to

latest rife, but with how it runs its

my wife would rather have carried this

the KISS concept (keep it simple, stu-

business. This small, agile operation

rife around for nine months. After

pid), of which we’re big fans. There’s

runs heavily on customer feedback.

all, it weighs less and doesn’t cause

also been a resurgence of interest

We walked into the shop a few

morning sickness.


LIGHT EQUALS MIGHT So, who benefts from the lightweight AR concept? Just about anybody. If

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you hunt with an AR, it’s easier to lug

REC O ILW E B .C O M

78

it-yourselfers, this barrel is available

of whizz-bang glass on top. Of course,

standalone from the Sionics website,

you could do that and end up with an

weighing in at 1.375 pounds.

overall package that is still relatively

Behind the barrel sits a bolt carrier

light, but for this evaluation we stuck to the bare necessities.

long distances over terrain. If you shoot

group that is MPI and pressure tested,

three-gun, a light rife will drive faster

as well as coated with a nickel-Tefon

on multi-target hoser stages. If you’re

fnish. The trigger is an ALG QMS,

nice features. We loved the diamond-

preparing for the worst, it means having

which is not one of this author’s favorite

shaped rear apertures. They made sight

one rife that everyone in the family can

units (e.g. the 4.5-pound CMC single-

alignment noticeably faster for us than

shoot. If you work the street or the ’stan

stage). But this particular Patrol LW

the standard round version. The front

and you have to hang a bunch of tech

test gun had just returned from a demo

sight ramp also has a series of fne

off your handguard, it can help man-

trip to a Texas law enforcement agency,

horizontal grooves cut into it to reduce

age the burden. But make no mistake,

where it had been well broken in. After

glare. While a matter of personal prefer-

the Sionics Patrol LW is not light on

running it like a dog with its ass on fre,

ence, we found the HK-style hood more

features. Off the rack, it sports a B5

this writer is warming up to the QMS as

attractive than the traditional fower-

SOPMOD stock, Ergo pistol grip, VLTOR

an acceptable everyday trigger.

petal protective wings. However, said

The Troy dioptic sights have some

hood on the front sight gave us a severe

Gunfghter charging handle, and a Mid-

The Patrol LW doesn’t come with

west Industries 15-inch SSK forearm.

any sights on board, so we installed a

case of heartburn because a standard

The Midwest handguard is especially

set of Troy dioptic fxed sights. [Edi-

two-sided front sight tool couldn’t

nice. It’s KeyMod compatible, with an

tor’s note: The rife pictured here is

stretch far enough down to actually ad-

outside diameter of only 1.5 inches.

ftted with Magpul MBUS Pro Sights.]

just the front sight post. By chance, we

The fact that it runs a full 15 inches

It seemed a bit counterproductive to

found a front sight tool that ft (made

accommodates all shooting styles and

pull a sub-6-pound rife out of the

by Troy, no less) at a local sporting

protects the pencil-profle barrel from

box, and then throw 2 pounds’ worth

goods store. Buyer beware.

any potential damage or fexing when shooting off benches or barricades. The heart of this rife is Sionics’ new lightweight barrel. It’s not futed, but has a very thin profle. Its diameter is 0.637 inch behind the gas block port and 0.573 inch in front, and it uses a 0.625-inch block. The CMV4150 steel is Melonite fnished both inside and out. Every Sionics barrel (yes, every one) is air gauged, magnetic particle inspected, and X-rayed before leaving the factory. It’s chambered in 5.56mm, complete with M4 feed ramp extension and a 1:8 twist. The test gun was capped with a standard A2 birdcage, but other muzzle devices are available on request. For the do-


SIX-POUND HAMMER

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79 REC O ILW E B .C O M


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SIX-POUND HAMMER

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80

Patrol LW is fnished in tungsten Ceracote and looks a million bucks. Note that although the lower is marked with three selector positions, this one is semi auto only. Unfortunately.

AT THE RANGE

which means that if you happen to

known, per the laws of physics, if your

place your support hand around the

current AR is set up as a varmint gun,

aforementioned front sight issues

same spot as the gas block, there’s

SPR, or open-division contender, the

precluded any type of accuracy test-

less than ¼ inch between your palm

Patrol LW in stock form may seem a

ing, but we were still able to shoot for

and the block itself. We shot the rife

touch jumpy to you.

general frst impressions. The rife is

totally bare, save for the iron sights

remarkably nimble, compared to this

— no rail covers, no gloves. Despite

the Patrol LW went much smoother.

author’s personal AR, which weighs

96-degree heat and more than 100

Having adjusted to the change in per-

in at around 7.8 pounds. Two pounds

rounds through the tube on that frst

ceived recoil and dialed in that pesky

doesn’t sound like a lot, but it sure

day, we didn’t notice a thing. The

front sight to a 50-yard zero, we went

as hell feels like it when you start

rife does bounce a little more under

to work. From 15 to 50 yards, shooting

doing things like El Prez drills with

recoil than you might be used to, but

off hand with iron sights resulted in

long-guns. The other thing of note is

remember how light it is and that it

groups averaging about 1½ MOA. A

that the handguard barely heats up.

wears a fash hider. It certainly wasn’t

couple groups were sub-MOA, and a

Why’s this even worth mentioning? As

a problem, as the 5.56mm round is

couple others stretched out to around

previously stated, the MI forearm has

not particularly famous for its daunting

2 MOA. Ammo was all 55-grain loads,

an outside diameter of only 1.5 inches,

recoil in the frst place. Just let it be

a mix of Federal, Hornady, and Tula.

On our frst trip to the range, the

The second trip to the range with


SIX-POUND HAMMER More than once, we neatly clipped the

difference between this plastic plinker

center out of a 1.5-inch circle paster

and the Patrol LW is just 6 ounces.

while on the move. We also shaved

Many folks ascribe to the philosophy

several tenths of a second off our aver-

of having a .22 LR training weapon for

age El Presidente times. Even with the

each of their “full power” guns. If you

rapid-fre drills, there was no overheat-

are in this camp, having a 5.56mm AR

ing of the handguard and no stoppages

and a .22 LR AR that nearly balance

of any kind — despite having skipped

each other perfectly on the scales will

cleaning and lubrication between the

make your rimfre practice an even

range trips. And the last time out

more effective parallel.

consisted of almost 200 rounds of

A couple guys around the Sionics shop mentioned that they were ringing IPSC-sized steel as far as 600 yards.

Lightweight free foat tube has every ounce of fat carved away and keys into the barrel nut to prevent rotation.

We didn’t witness those feats, but

If there’s any bad news to be had

steel-cased TulAmmo, randomly mixed

in this article, here it is: the Patrol

with a handful of Federal bulk.

LW has an MSRP of $1,299. If you’re

We also shot the Patrol LW side by

looking to break into the AR game on

side with a S&W M&P 15-22. If you’re

a budget, the Patrol LW is not where

unfamiliar, the latter is Smith & Wes-

you’ll fnd entry-level pricing. However,

son’s .22 LR AR-pattern rife. It’s a

it’s hardly an entry-level gun. Premium

fantastic plinker and trainer, weighing

materials, quality accessories, and

in at a spritely 5.5 pounds. The 15-22

an impressively lightweight barrel

has a quad-rail fore-end, upper receiv-

are assembled in a two-man shop to

er, lower receiver, and buffer tube all

give you a one-and-done rife for the

constructed of polymer. Yet the weight

whole family.

even if you round our groups up to a 2 MOA, it’s well within reason.

FAT CAMP CHAMPS This rife is just plain fun to shoot.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Tom Marshall works in the private security and corrections industries. He graduated from the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy at Kings Point, where he earned a bachelor’s degree, a U.S.

It’s handy, points quick, and just

Coast Guard third mate’s license, and a commission as a U.S. Army offcer. During Operation

wouldn’t quit. Even after completing

Iraqi Freedom, Tom served as a reconnaissance platoon leader and company executive offcer

the formal evaluation, we took the

in the last American combat brigade to withdraw from Iraq. His maritime, military, and security

Patrol LW out for a third range trip just

experience has taken him to 19 countries on three continents…so far. Born and raised in New

because it was so enjoyable. The fnal

York, Tom much prefers his current home in the great American Southwest. There are more guns,

time, we installed an EOTech XPS-2

more horses, and much less snow.

SPEC BOX

and went to town at the 7-yard line.

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REC O ILW E B .C O M

84 IS SU E

17


THE LIVING LEGEND WITH A SIGNATURE ’STACHE, KEN HACKATHORN REMINISCENCES ABOUT TEACHING AMERICA’S WARRIORS AND HELPING INFLUENCE MODERN-DAY SHOOTING AS WE KNOW IT BY MIKE LANDERS PHOTOS BY Q CONCEPTS

The name “Hackathorn” strikes a chord of respect

the man is how his impressive résumé came to be and

among the pantheon of frearms enthusiasts and instruc-

why he deserves every bit of the respect he has earned.

tors. In many ways he is the Obi Wan Kenobi to our

Watching Hackathorn go through his extensive fre-

collective Luke Skywalker: the shooting sage we want

arms collection is akin to seeing a young boy thumbing

to learn from and the wise man we hope to be. These

through his baseball cards. In his six decades of life,

sentiments are not without merit.

he’s never lost the enthusiasm he frst found in frearms

The man behind the ’stache, Ken Hackathorn, was

as an Ohio adolescent. “When I was 14 years old, I

a formative force behind three-gun competitions as

ordered guns in the mail,” he says with a laugh as the

we know them today and is a founding member of two

morning sun peers into his Idaho homestead. “I remem-

competitive shooting titans, the International Practical

ber ordering a .303 carbine and 100 rounds of ammo

Shooting Confederation (IPSC) and the International De-

for $14.95, delivered by Railway Express. Of course, this

fensive Pistol Association (IDPA). His status as a former

was all prior to the ’68 Gun Control Act, so there was no

U.S. Army Special Forces soldier and a certifed deputy

age restriction.”

sheriff only furthers his real-world credibility. If that’s

It’s that genuine enthusiasm that makes Hackathorn

not enough, he has taught everyone from local SWAT

so compelling. He knows his sizeable collection like the

teams and federal law enforcement agencies to special

back of his hand, and an afternoon discussing guns with

operation forces in the USA and elite units in nations

the man means an afternoon of learning and laughs. He

around the globe (Germany and the Netherlands just to

can rattle off technological advancements and country-

name a couple). Hackathorn’s wealth of knowledge and

specifc platforms off the top of his head like a historian

experience have made him highly sought after in the

from the Smithsonian. “It’s been interesting to see the

private sector. He has served as a consultant for Glock,

stuff that at one time was considered the way to go, but

Heckler & Koch, and Smith & Wesson, teaches classes

by today’s standards wouldn’t be much good,” he says.

through Alias Training & Security Services, and is also

While most would be impressed by Hackathorn’s wisdom

one of BCM’s vaunted Gunfghters. And no surprise, Wil-

accumulated over the decades, some have actually

son Combat designed the Hackathorn Special 1911 to

bristled at his age.

honor the master and his love of the iconic handgun. It

“Sometimes I get people saying, ‘I don’t want to take

comes complete with an ivory stock handle that matches

Hackathorn’s class — it’d be like taking a class with my

the color of Ken’s facial hair.

grandfather,’” he says. “I’m not offended. If you think

Clearly, the man affectionately known as “Hack” is anything but that. What a Google search won’t tell you about

one has to be 25 to be profcient, then that’s fne. Hell, back when I was 25, I might have said the same thing.”


THE MASTER ability to teach you without you even

How did you initially pursue shooting

realizing it. We got a glimpse of it

instruction?

when Hackathorn recently welcomed

KH: When I went into the Army, I

RECOIL to his home ranch in Idaho,

ended up getting a slot as a small-

where we got to not only run his famed

arms instructor, which everybody

“Wizard Drill,” but also chat about how

assumes was the jumping off point for

he helped establish modern shooting

me, but it wasn’t — though it did give

as we know it.

me the interest. I got out and into

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17

law enforcement, and where I lived

REC O ILW E B .C O M

86

RECOIL: When did you frst fall in love

in the Ohio Valley they paid starva-

with frearms?

tion wages. I ended up taking a job

Ken Hackathorn: While other kids

with Union Carbide for years when

were talking about baseball or draw-

it came time to start a family, but I

ing naked girls, I was the kid in class

would periodically go back and forth

drawing pictures of guns. I’ve always

with law enforcement. So much so I

been interested in them and gravitated

actually have a retirement from the

to them all my life. I read Guns &

Washington County Sheriff’s offce in

Ammo in high school study hall reli-

Ohio; I was a deputy sheriff. Some of

Still, he cautions against choos-

giously, and there were two writers in

the guys I worked with and I would go

ing classes taught by instructors who

particular whom I took infuence from.

out to local clubs and practice what

rest on their laurels. “I’m 68 years

One was Jeff Cooper, who was kind of

would now be considered “combat

old, so I know you can’t place a value

the tactical shooting combat guy of

shooting techniques.”

on what you do based on something

the day and the other big handgun guy

you did 20 years ago. That’s not the

was named Elmer Keith, who was from

Did you take any shooting classes

way life works. It’d be like needing a

Salmon, Idaho. He’s the guy who was

yourself?

responsible for the .44 Magnum round

KH: When I frst started out in the

and wrote for a number of periodicals.

private sector, Jeff Cooper infuenced

I read their stuff all the time.

me. I wrote a letter to him in ’75 and

critical surgeon and picking one who did something notable in 1968 — it’s much more important to you that the surgeon remains current and uses current procedures. It’s interesting that our society tends to be geared that way. Consequently, I’m amazed that some of my peers in this industry are teaching the same things they did 15 to 20 years ago. Of course, that stuff has value, but it’s not what’s going on now. Learning should be an ongoing process, and that goes for instructors, too.” Being a perpetual student is what makes Hackathorn such a master teacher. This allows him to evoke passion in and encourage dialogue among his students as opposed to just running drills. It should be noted that he is also quite worthy of the cliché, “one of the nicest guys you’ll ever meet.” Ask anybody. His irreverent brand of humor is so engaging it conceals perhaps his greatest talent on the range: the

Hack shows us how to engage elevated targets from behind cover on his home ranch.


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17

THE MASTER

REC O ILW E B .C O M

88 told him I would like to learn more about his combat shooting techniques. Most people assume the military gave me most of my techniques, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. He

Ken Hackathorn lives on a ranch with a custom range in Idaho, where he has plenty of open land and privacy. It’s as close to being off-grid as you can get while still being a part of civilization.

mind-blowing. Cooper started IPSC

Were you still training at Gunsite dur-

around this time, and I was one of the

ing this time period?

founding members.

KH: I was. Eventually there were things I started to question regarding tech-

Was this time period the beginning of

niques, and Jeff was a bit more locked

IPSC?

into his dogma than I wanted to be.

KH: Yes, when IPSC started, in the

Over a period of time, we butted heads

long deal. My wife had an aunt who

mid ’70s, it was combat shooting. We

too much, and I was the frst person to

lived in Denver, so we made the trip

were drawing from holsters, shoot-

break away from Gunsite. It was tough

with my 1-year-old daughter in tow.

ing multiple targets, reloading under

in those early days. Cooper took it

told me he was teaching a class in Fort Collins, Colorado, and it was a week-

Jeff and I hit it off because he

stress, using varying courses and it

pretty hard and initially refused to ac-

was a genuine gun guy and so was I.

was “radical.” For the frst fve or six

knowledge me in public and so forth. I

Before his course was called Gunsite,

years, people showed up with guns

just had my own ideas, and since I had

it was called the American Pistol

that represented what people re-

worked at Gunsite, people approached

Institute, and he brought in a few guys

ally carried — and then it started to

me to teach classes, and I taught as

to be range offcers. In the original

evolve. I think Americans uniquely

much as I could. I fgured initially that

brochure, I’m actually the frst instruc-

tend to bastardize everything they get

teaching would just support my love of

tor listed. Everybody in this business

involved in, and you started seeing

shooting, and it evolved into becoming

today is a product of somebody from

guns and holsters made strictly for

more of a supplemental income for my

Gunsite — Jeff Cooper’s infuence is

IPSC competition. Then the mindset of

family. I came from a fairly humble

still that huge. At the time, I was an

the real hardcore competitor shifted to

background. I was one of those kids

NRA-certifed police frearms instruc-

trying to gain an edge by any means,

who never knew he was poor until

tor, and for me to go from that to

and it gravitated to the point that it

I went to high school, because at

what Cooper was having us do, it was

lost any relevancy to the real world.

elementary, everyone was the same as


Š2014 Magpul Industries Corporation. All Rights Reserved. Magpul holds a Trademark on all of its product names and logos.The following products are trademarks of Magpul Industries Corporation, registered in the U.S. and other countries: Magpul, M-LOK, MOE.


THE MASTER with that, you started to have guys getting out of the military and becoming potential instructors as well. The level of skill that is now the norm among people who are active competition shooters is so far beyond what it was that it’s unbelievable. Still, shooting skill is just a piece of the pie; mindset is everything. You’ve gotta have your head screwed on right to be any good in the real world. How has frearms training evolved or changed in your eyes? KH: The most sweeping changes in frearms instruction have happened within the last decade. Not only what the students are about, but the explosion of instructors. Everybody’s an instructor, and everybody is an expert.

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17

Mind you, there are some really good

REC O ILW E B .C O M

90

new. To his credit, he got together Walt

guys out there, but it’s changed to the

Rauch, Larry Vickers, Dick Thomas,

point that those of us who have been

John Sayle, and myself, and we met at

in it for a while have a joking term for

a Ramada Inn in Marietta, Ohio — and

the hype. We call it “enter-trainment.”

literally hammered out IDPA in one

I don’t see it getting any better, but

weekend.

life is about change. You’ve got to move forward, regardless.

Firearms ownership and the overall in-

me, so the early money I made training was great for me. When you got away from IPSC, what were you seeing that made you want to start IDPA instead? KH: Bill Wilson has been a friend of mine since the early days. He had put a lot of money into IPSC, which evolved into the USPSA, and we all saw the problems start to evolve. Bill wrote a letter to the president of the USPSA

HACK’S MOST USED HANDGUNS Colt 1911 Glock 17 or 19 Smith & Wesson Model 66 M9 Beretta (for training courses) SIG SAUER P226

terest in frearms training has skyrock-

Trainers are the new rock stars, that’s

eted within the past couple decades.

for sure. How has the recognition af-

Why do you think that is?

fected you, and what do you think of

KH: I can remember back in the

personal branding?

’80s, there was a very strong anti-gun

KH: We’ve seen a change within the

movement in America, but the interest

industry as far as instructors and

has multiplied since then. Guns are

shooters are concerned. I came up

“cool” now. In the early days, people

with the frst Wilson Combat CQB olive

just sought out training to become a

drab green frame, and the Wilson CQB

better shooter, to fnd out how to be an

was my bread and butter in terms of

improved shooter, or to confrm their

early instruction. At the time, I never

skill and technique level. They typically

thought to brand it or anything, but

carried Smith & Wesson revolvers or

that’s just hindsight. It’s amazing

1911s.

to see how much the industry has

Over the years, something changed

changed. In the past, what I did was

and suggested proposed changes that

and, to be honest with you, I think the

considered to be on the level of a

could get it back to what it was. The

change was Sept. 11. Everybody in

washing-machine repairman. Nobody

president, Andy Holler, scoffed at the

America lost faith in having the gov-

really cared that much. And now I

changes, and Bill stopped contributing.

ernment be their primary safe keeper,

can’t go 20 feet at the SHOT Show

He called me and a few other people,

and they wanted to be able to defend

without people recognizing me or

asking if we wanted to start something

themselves and their family. Along

chatting — which I don’t mind, but it’s


THE MASTER certainly different. If you look at guys like Clint Smith and Larry Vickers, who were the early savvy marketers within this industry, they were very smart to capitalize on branding themselves and their products. The market expects that nowadays. What advice would you have for people who are looking into trainers? KH: There are a lot of great instructors out there, but you need to identify why you want to take a class. What do you want to get out of it? Do you want to learn to protect your wife and family? Are you going to a dangerous part of the city and want to be able to defend yourself? The same type of questions should be asked about platform choices, too. How far do you think your

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17

potential engagements might be?

REC O ILW E B .C O M

92

My theory is if you’re out shooting just for competition, you’re out shooting and God Bless you. It’s good for America. Guys will go to tremendous lengths to win a trophy or a medal, and you’d think they would apply the same effort to learn how to defend themselves — but no, they won’t.

KEN HACKATHORN’S EVERYDAY CARRY Handgun (he has many to choose from: Colt Wiley Clapp LW Commander 1911, Glock 19, Smith & Wesson Airweight, Smith & Wesson .44 Special with snake shot [for the summertime], Wilson Combat Hackathorn Special 1911, and plenty more not pictured) Swiss Army Knife Coin Purse Wallet Keys

When did you start teaching?

shooters to teach them techniques.

KH: I started my own stuff in 1981.

Once they went off to war and got a

I crossed paths with John Farnam a

chance to apply the techniques, they

lot, as we were the only guys who were

found that most of it was bullshit and

out there touring and teaching. John

borderline suicidal in a real-world ap-

had his Dualatron targets, which were

plication. On the fipside, we’ve also

popular in law enforcement classes in

learned that you can have a ton of

the ’80s, as they helped them teach

military experience or a great record,

decision-making techniques. Since

but it doesn’t necessarily mean you’re

Gunsite was a fve-day course, I started

a great teacher.

taking a fve-day class and crunched it into two days, because people couldn’t

What do you see as a central obstacle

afford to take so many days off.

for competition shooters looking to take more self-defense-styled classes?

What differences do you see between

KH: The emphasis on speed and cer-

shooters who train for competition and

tain muscle memory drills can be really

those who train for self-defense?

harmful in a real-world application.

KH: Certain things are just different in

Under stress, the conscious analytical

the real world versus the competition

mind doesn’t work; only the subcon-

or “game boy” world. A lot of guys talk

scious mind can function from what

of security, but you’ve gotta know how

about their splits and times. When I

it’s been fed. When bullets are fying,

to use it safely and effectively. Why

hear somebody talking about splits, I

you’ve got the IQ of a lizard. Fighting

skimp on quality or training if you’ve

push the delete button on them be-

with a frearm means having to work

purchased something to be competent

cause they’re a game boy, they’re not

with what you’ve programmed into your

in defending yourself and your family?

a realist. That’s something that is very

mind — and that can only happen from

important in that world, but they’ve

practice. Everything we do is critical in

lost any semblance of reality in what

that respect. A target in real life might

they’re doing. You end up program-

not be “one and done.” He may keep

ming yourself with refexive responses,

coming at you, but you stop fring be-

and those responses can get you killed

cause you already hit them once — like

in the real world. They think that if it

you would a posed target on a speed

was a “real scenario” they wouldn’t do

competition. It’s not how fast you hit

those responses, but in reality, they

somebody. It’s where you hit them that

would.

can neutralize the situation. That’s

I do believe you should train with your frearm in the best way you can, whether you take classes or not. A lot of people buy frearms with the illusion

There was a period post-Sept. 11

where my Wizard Drill comes into play.

where all the special-ops teams in the

You’ve got to learn to focus on an ag-

military started bringing in champion

gressor rather than a clock.


THE MASTER know where we’re at and where we

he eventually struck out on his own.

are going. Take the Glock for instance.

When he left, everybody went with him

People swear it’s a revolutionary gun,

to Alias. Larry Vickers, who’s like the

but there’s nothing revolutionary about

little brother I never had, defnitely

it. The polymer frame? HK pioneered

helped me get my foot in the door as

that with the VP70 in 1970, a good

an instructor for some military units as

15 years before Gaston Glock came up

well as with Alias.

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17

with a polymer frame. The locking sys-

REC O ILW E B .C O M

94

tem? It’s from the SIG SAUER P220.

Do you prefer teaching government

The trigger safety button is a direct

classes or private citizens?

copy from the Iver Johnson 1886 safety

KH: From 1990 up until fairly recently,

trigger system. The trigger mechanism?

almost all of the training I’ve done

Roth-Steyr M1907, which was an

has been governmental. Private sector

Austrian service pistol. In essence, he

classes are fairly new to me, but I

didn’t design anything — he combined

prefer them much more. I like civil-

the strengths from a few other models

ians better because they all want to

and created a gun that has become and

be there, in the sense that they have

remained an industry standard. I grew

to pay and sacrifce time to be there.

up with the 1911, and I love them.

A lot of times with the governmental

Mine work, I can shoot them well, and

training, it’s just something that the

it’s probably my favorite handgun. Still,

guys have to do, so they aren’t in-

I tell a lot of new shooters they would

vested fnancially or mentally into it.

be better off with a new gun that are You tend to focus more on handgun training within your classes. Why is that?

The Jedi Master shows off a personalized morale patch given to him as a gift.

made under different standards than

Have there been any people you’ve

the original 1911s were.

looked up to? KH: I’ve met a lot of really interesting

How did your working with Alias as a

people and some amazing trainers. Jim

trainer come about?

Cirillo is a guy whom I had a ton of re-

— Hell, I’ve got a house full of them.

KH: Luckily for me, through Larry

spect for. He was a NYPD offcer back

But for the average non-government

Vickers, I met a guy named Paul

in the ’70s and was in more shootouts

employee, what are the odds you’ll

Hotaling. At that time, he was running

that Wyatt Earp, Wild Bill Hickok, and

ever use a carbine to protect yourself?

a training division for Grey Group, and

Bat Masterson combined. We have this

KH: Let’s be honest, we all love the carbine classes. I love teaching them

Good, bad, or indifferent, for most people the handgun is the most likely tool they’ll use to protect themselves. Whether you’re a soldier, a civilian, or a policeman, 85 percent of the time, you use a frearm at 10 yards or less — heavy on less. Why do you keep a keen interest in the latest technology? KH: Guns represent their era. One of the sad things in this business is that you can fnd a lot of guys who are good trainers, but all they understand are the frearms they were issued in the military. That’s cool. My theory as a student of small arms is that you’ve gotta know where we were to


GEM-TE

CH.COM

THE FUTURE OF SILENCE ™

Photo: Josh Wolfe

GM-9 G-COR

E TECH

DROP B SHOT S Y AT BOOTH HOW

#20521

© GEMTECH 2015. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

THE FU

TURE

NOLOG

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OF SIL

ENCE™


THE MASTER image of a gunfghter, and he was anything but that — he was not the stereotypical tough guy. My talks with him changed my mentality about shooting skill. With me coming from my IPSC background, I asked him about his shooting times in the shootouts he was in because he was in so many. His answer was, “You take whatever time it takes to make the shot.” I didn’t want to hear that at the time, but it changed the way I viewed real-world shooting techniques. Bill Wilson and I have been friends forever, and I’ve got a number of his guns. He came out to visit, and we got to talking about “go to town” guns, in terms of making a higher-end-looking gun and came up with the Hackathorn Special.

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17

Paul Buffoni is one of the most

REC O ILW E B .C O M

96

stand-up guys in the frearms industry, so when I got approached about using BCM carbines, I had no qualms in using his models because I was already using them. I’ve probably met half of the people in this industry who just want to shake people down for sponsored equipment with no desire to actually use it, and that just refects poorly on everybody. If you make an agreement as an instructor or as a

KEN HACKATHORN AGE: 68 FAMILY: Wife, two daughters, and one stepson SELECT PERSONAL FIREARMS: BCM 16-inch and 14-inch carbines, Bren Ten with two original magazines and original Norma 10mm ammo, Colt Delta Elite 10mm, multiple Glock 20s, Heckler & Koch MP5, Heckler & Koch VP9, Marlin lever action .22 rife, Mauser K98 (his uncle brought it back from WWII’s Battle of the Bulge), Rock Island Armory 10mm 1911, Romanian AK, Smith & Wesson 610, Wilson Combat Hackathorn Special 1911, and many, many more

high-profle shooter, you should only do so with products you actually would

I’m very happy with where I am. I could

off. I can go to sleep at night with a

use on your own. Obviously, not every-

have been vastly more successful if I’d

clear conscience. I do what I love for a

body follows that sentiment.

been more marketing-minded about my

living, and it feels good.

approach a long time ago. But, I can Looking back on your career, how do

shave and look at myself in the mirror

you see yourself?

without feeling like I’ve ripped people

KH: You look at your journey in life and, ultimately, everybody wants to think they’ve done something good. My feld of expertise is real narrow, it really is. However, I can honestly say I did a good job at what I did and I’m proud of what I did, in the sense that I allowed the people who took my classes to learn and grow to achieve some degree of skill. I feel blessed because I’ve managed to get to a place in life where


any tools and retain your zero. Some of those who are fanatical about their zeroes break into hives at the idea of removing an optic (some of us on staff here included), no matter the type of mount. But there are numerous reasons that this might be useful, including mundane tasks like cleaning and maintenance, or the pursuit of versatility in utilizing multiple optics on the same upper, whether multiple-day optics or to swap in thermals or night

A GUIDE TO QUICK-DETACH SCOPE MOUNTS

vision. Although great strides have been made in terms of durability, glass is still, well, glass. Some of the guys we know who use precision rigs for a

IS SU E

17

BY STEVEN KUO

REC O ILW E B .C O M

98

One of the most signifcant trends in

Yet one constant remains — you must

living will remove their optic from the

recent years has been the widespread

attach that awesome piece of glass to

weapon when jumping or in other sce-

adoption of optics to increase shoot-

your rife. It must cling to your boom-

narios where sights will be subjected

ers’ effectiveness with their rifes. And

stick securely and precisely, and if you

to high G forces. In the (hopefully rare)

optics manufacturers have risen to

wish to remove and reinstall your optic

situation of needing to quickly remove

the challenge, delivering technological

at will, it must be utterly consistent

a dead or damaged optic in the feld,

masterpieces — from affordable yet

as well.

a QD mount saves time and the need

In particular, quick-detach scope

for tools. And even the not-always-

red-dots with nearly infnite battery

mounts are designed to provide the

justifable-to-your-wife argument of

life, to jack-of-all-trades variable

fexibility to easily attach and detach

accepting the price premium for the

power scopes bristling with features.

an optic from your weapon without

additional capability, “just in case.”

reliable basic models, to indestructible


There has been a scope-mount re-

So put the kids to bed, hide your

exactly leveled and aligned. No need

naissance of sorts in recent years, with

for plumb lines, bubble levels, or feeler

credit card, and take a gander at some

more great models available from more

gauges; just plug-and-play. The ACOG

carefully machined badassery. Please

companies than ever. They span the

dedicated mount interface, for in-

note that products from a particular

gamut from super affordable to beauti-

stance, has been adopted for use with

manufacturer naturally all utilize the

fully machined pieces of mechanical,

other optics as well, such as Trijicon’s

same type of quick detach mounting

deadly art. Generally, they fall into the

own VCOG and the thermal scopes we

system, so the frst mention of each

following two categories:

covered in Issue 14. The same applies

company in the traditional scope mounts

for other mounting patterns.

section addresses those particulars.

Traditional scope mounts: These utilize the ubiquitous circular scope rings to clamp on the tube of a traditional scope. Typical scope tubes are 1 inch or 30mm in diameter, with

Return to Zero

heftier optics puffng out to 34mm and even beyond. Most of the mounts of this variety shown here are onepiece affairs, with both front and rear rings affxed to the base. This provides you with convenience as well as confdence that the rings are properly separate front and rear rings have also

IS S U E

served shooters well over the years,

17

aligned relative to each other. Still,

especially for weapon systems lacking

99

a top rail; however, they’re much less capability (LaRue’s two-piece QD One of the key features

from a premium McGowen

the average muzzle velocity

These types of mounts accommodate

advertised by scope-mount

blank, with a .223 Wylde

was 2,743 fps.)

a wide range of scopes and offer

manufacturers is the ability to

chamber and 1:8 twist. The

A Brownells Magna-Tip

nearly infnite adjustment fore and

remove and reattach your optic

most unique attribute of the

adjustable torque handle en-

aft (within the constraints of the fxed

without losing your zero. We

STRETCH 16 barrel is its in-

sured we tightened all screws

position of the rings) to precisely dial

decided to put this to the test.

termediate-length gas system,

exactly to spec, and the Sin-

placing the gas port between

clair benchrest and Protektor

offering is included in these pages).

in your desired eye relief. On the other

Gorilla Ammunition provided

hand, perfectly leveling your optic can

us with their excellent 69-grain

mid-length and rife length

bags kept us frmly on target.

be a bit of chore.

.223 Sierra MatchKing loads,

systems; similar to that found

The SST upper also featured

lovingly stuffed into shiny

on Knights Armament’s SR-

a Lantac DGN556B Dragon

Dedicated mounts: With the ex-

new brass with match-grade

15, it’s been rare to fnd on a

muzzle brake, SLR Rifeworks

tremely tight tolerances now perme-

primers. (The company also

match barrel. The combina-

Sentry 7 adjustable gas block

ating the industry (optics and their

produces 55-grain Sierra

tion with the Gorilla 69-grain

and Solo Ultra Lite KeyMod

mounting surfaces, the top rails on

BlitzKing and 77-grain Sierra

SMKs resulted in groups that

handguard, VLTOR MUR-

rifes, and the fnely machined mounts

MatchKing rounds). Our test

were consistently sub-MOA,

1S receiver, and lightweight

themselves) dedicated scope mounts

upper was built by Lew Graves

true to SST’s accuracy guar-

polished JP Enterprises LMOS

offer some nice advantages at the

at Strong Side Tactical (SST).

antee. In fact, we had numer-

bolt carrier group. Paired with

expense of being purpose-built. By

The heart of any upper is its

ous groups during our testing

a lightened buffer in our lower,

just tightening a few screws, you can

barrel, and this one featured

hovering around 0.5 MOA,

we dialed in the gas block on

easily attach optics like the Aimpoint

SST’s STRETCH 16 barrel, a

with our best hitting the mark

the intermediate-length system

Micro Series, Trijicon RMR, or ACOG

cerakoted 16-inch stainless-

exactly on the dot. Damn

and enjoyed an amazingly soft

to their mounts and be assured they’re

steel precision barrel turned

impressive performance. (FYI,

shooting gun, even softer than

REC O ILW E B .C O M

commonly found with quick-detach


MOUNT â&#x20AC;&#x2122;EM UP an 18-inch rife-length three-gun com-

ADM

petition upper we also brought with us. Why do we tell you all this? Because if you want to reproduce our results and check our work, you have all the info you need to set up something comparable in terms of performance. From the benchrest, we shot mul-

Alamo Four Star

tiple groups with a Vortex Razor HD Gen II 1-6x24 scope in each mount, removing and reinstalling it between each string. We scanned the targets and loaded them on the computer to calculate and compare the center

Bobro

points of each group. Overall, the return to zero performance of all the mounts was stellar, with an average zero shift across all the manufacturers of just 0.07 MOA. Most of the mounts had average shifts in the

Burris

IS SU E

17

hundredths of MOA in our testing, with

REC O ILW E B .C O M

100

the Bobro turning in the smallest at 0.016 MOA and the Burris the largest at 0.22 MOA. We would hardly call our exercise unassailably scientifc and hesitate to rank the mounts purely

GDI

on these test results, so the overall takeaway from our testing is that the scope mounts all performed extremely well on return to zero.

Zero Shift (MOA) ADM

0.135

Alamo

0.027

Bobro

0.016

GG&G

Burris 0.223 GDI

0.045

GG&G

0.043

LaRue

0.076

PRI

0.049

We also used Brownellsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; sleeved scope alignment rods to check the one-piece scope mounts. All of the mounts were more or less aligned within a hair, testing the tolerances of the alignment tool.

LaRue Tactical

PRI


3

ENGAGE


TRADITIONAL SCOPE MOUNTS

MOUNT ’EM UP These scope mounts accommodate traditional rifescopes with a main tube, most often 1 inch or 30mm in diameter. All mounts shown here have 30mm rings.

AMERICAN DEFENSE MFG

AD-RECON-X-TAC-R

CENTERLINE HEIGHT:

NOTES:

1.47 inches

Eat your heart out, Burger King, you WEIGHT: can defnitely have it your way with 8.2 ounces ADM’s mounts — and at affordable RING SCREWS: prices to boot. ADM offers a dizzying 9/64-inch hex array of options, including varying MSRP: amounts of eye relief (extended version $200 shown here), black or dark earth color, numerous ring sizes (1 inch, 30mm, 32mm, 34mm, 35mm, and 40mm), various centerline heights, and standard or larger tactical levers (as shown). Unlike most other mounts in this guide (except for LaRue), ADM’s skeletonized scope rings are split vertically, making installation easier since you needn’t worry about maintaining even spacing as with horizontally split rings. There are two cross bolts for recoil lugs and two locking levers that clamp down on spring-loaded side bars. They adjust for tension via adjustment nuts opposite the levers. Comes with a wrench and threadlocker.

ALAMO FOUR STAR 17

CENTERLINE HEIGHT:

IS SU E

DLOC-M4X-30MM

1.5 inches

REC O ILW E B .C O M

102

NOTES:

The DLOC is deadly serious about WEIGHT: grabbing ahold of your rife, with six 7.2 ounces cross bolts for recoil lugs and two RING SCREWS: spring-loaded clamping side bars, one T-25 torx for each mounting nut. To attach the MSRP: mount, simply unscrew the nuts, which $279 will provide space to push the clamping bars outward. They are under spring tension, so once you place it on your top rail and let go, the mount will cling to it like your 6 year old on her frst day of school. Then tighten the nuts by hand until you can’t stand the sharp edges anymore and you’re good to go — easy as pie and no tools required. If desired, you can grab a wrench and tighten them to spec for a non-QD installation. The DLOC is fnely machined, and the rings held our scope snugly even before we tightened them down. Versions with 34mm rings and more extended eye relief are also available.

BOBRO ENGINEERING

B03-200-300-R9

CENTERLINE HEIGHT:

1.5 inches

NOTES:

The nicely machined Bobro mounts WEIGHT: feature a clever design that exerts 7.7 ounces compressible and constant clamping RING SCREWS: forces in all directions on the pic rail, T-30 torx thus obviating the need for manual MSRP: tension adjustments and automatically $236 compensating for any dimensional variations in the rail. If that’s too much geek talk, the bottom line is that there’s a single QD lever with an automatic spring-loaded lock — just open or close it; there’s nothing else to fddle with. A wrench and Loctite are included. Many versions are available, including single and dual lever models, various ring sizes (1 inch, 30mm, 34mm, 35mm), 20MOA or 30MOA cant, and standard (shown) and extended eye relief.


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TRADITIONAL SCOPE MOUNTS

MOUNT ’EM UP BURRIS

AR-P.E.P.R. QD MOUNT

CENTERLINE HEIGHT:

NOTES:

1.64 inches

This value priced contender from WEIGHT: Burris offers a lot of bang for 10 ounces (10.4 ounces the buck. While it doesn’t match with top pic rails) the ft and fnish of the other RING SCREWS: products, it gets the job done and T-15 torx comes with replacement top ring MSRP: halves with pic rails for attaching $170 accessories. It’s extended a moderate amount to provide additional eye relief. The mount has a single recoil lug, two cross bolts, and two locking levers that clamp down on a side bar. The levers can be adjusted by hand. There are six screws per ring, so reach for your electric screwdriver. It’s available with 1 inch and 30mm rings; note that the PEPR is made in China.

GLOBAL DEFENSE INITIATIVES

P-ROM L-MODEL

CENTERLINE HEIGHT:

NOTES:

IS SU E

17

1.5 inches

REC O ILW E B .C O M

104

The heftiest and beefest mount WEIGHT: of the bunch, everything about 10.8 ounces the GDI screams “over built,” RING SCREWS: in a good way — except for the T-10 torx attendant premium price. The PMSRP: ROM features a single recoil lug, $565 two cross bolts, and two locking levers that secure the clamp bar on the side. The levers are tightened by adjusting the screw opposite the levers. The mount comes with a torx wrench, extra screw, Loctite, and a wonderful custom carrying case (which ironically probably will not get used once you’ve mounted your optic). The top ring halves are threaded to accept GDI’s Modular Adapter Plate System accessories, such as the Trijicon RMR mount pictured here ($185). Variants with 25MOA cants and with 30mm, 34mm, and 35mm rings are available.

GG&G

FLT ACCUCAM QD

CENTERLINE HEIGHT:

1.46 inches

NOTES:

The skeletonized GG&G is quite WEIGHT: svelte and lightweight. The 6.7 ounces long QD lever, while perhaps RING SCREWS: a bit ungainly in appearance, 7/64-inch hex provides much more leverage MSRP: than the smaller levers on other $190 mounts and a nice spot for your booger hook (though larger and stubbier fngers will be cramped). There are two cross bolts for recoil lugs, while the lever cinches down the dovetail clamping side bar. Several allen wrenches are provided to secure the 30mm rings and adjust the Accucam lever to the proper tension. GG&G offers standard and slightly extended (shown) eye relief versions, 1-inch delrin ring reducers, a shorter model, and even one specifcally designed for the M1A SOCOM II with a reverse cantilever.


TRADITIONAL SCOPE MOUNTS

MOUNT ’EM UP LARUE TACTICAL

LT139-30 SPR/M4 EER MOUNT QD CENTERLINE HEIGHT:

NOTES:

1.5 inches

An elder statesman in the scope WEIGHT: mount business, LaRue and 7.3 ounces its LT139 have become staples RING SCREWS: in the market. The scope rings T-15 torx are split vertically, making MSRP: installation easier since you $232 needn’t worry about maintaining even spacing as with horizontally split rings. The mount has two recoil lugs and two levers (one locking) that cam down on the top rail. The LT139 cantilevers forward quite a bit to accommodate optics with a lot of eye relief, such as the increasingly popular low power variable scopes. LaRue offers numerous variations on the theme, including less or no extension, shorter and taller versions, 10 and 20MOA canted models, and 1 inch, 30mm, 34mm, and 35mm rings. It ships with a hex wrench to adjust tightness of the QD levers, torx wrench, extra screw, and Loctite.

LARUE TACTICAL

LT808-30

CENTERLINE HEIGHT:

1.375 inches 17

WEIGHT:

2.8 ounces (each)

IS SU E

RING SCREWS:

T-15 torx MSRP:

$189 (for pair)

106

NOTES:

REC O ILW E B .C O M

LaRue’s two piece scope ring set comes in various heights to clear your optic and optimize your cheek-weld for your particular weapon system, as well as 30mm and 34mm ring sizes. An adjustment wrench, extra screw, and Loctite are included.

PRECISION REFLEX INC

AR15/M16 GATOR GRIP PLATFORM WITH 30MM HIGH RINGS CENTERLINE HEIGHT:

1.63 inches

NOTES:

PRI’s Gator Grip WEIGHT: platform is a 9.9 ounces unique conRING SCREWS: fgurable system T-20 torx with a mounting MSRP: platform to $192 which you can attach scope rings at various different positions to accommodate your particular optic. 30mm, 1 inch, high, and low rings are available. The QD mount is spring loaded with two recoil lugs and two side clamps. Watch your fngers when working the lever; it’s got quite a kick to it. We know this from experience…


DEDICATED MOUNTS

MOUNT ’EM UP

AIMPOINT MICRO

IS SU E

17

ABSOLUTE CO-WITNESS

REC O ILW E B .C O M

108

These mounts are designed specifcally for the Aimpoint Micro mounting platform. Note that some other red-dot sights have adopted the same pattern and can be used with these mounts.

LOWER 1/3 CO-WITNESS

“IN-BETWEEN” CO-WITNESS

Red-dot sight mounts for the AR platform are

down) but maintain the same cheek weld ei-

the red-dot versus iron sights (or traditional

typically offered in various heights, designed

ther way. A “lower 1/3 co-witness” places the

rife scopes). Several mounts are built to place

to place the red-dot at a certain position

dot higher than the iron sights, so you get a

the red dot in between these two positions,

relative to the rife’s iron sights when you

less obstructed view of the dot, while the iron

to split the difference (they’re actually closer

assume a proper cheek-weld for the optic. An

sights are still available in the lower part of

to absolute than lower 1/3 co-witness). This

“absolute co-witness” mount will exactly align

the optic’s window — at the lower 1/3 point,

tends to be a highly personal preference,

the dot with the iron sights, so you’ll see them

hence the moniker. However, this means you’ll

so we recommend that you try the different

on top of each other (if they’re not folded

have a different cheek-weld when employing

heights to see which you prefer.

AMERICAN DEFENSE MFG

AD-T1-11

WEIGHT:

2.9 ounces MSRP:

$92 NOTES:

As you might expect, ADM offers numerous types of Micro mounts, including the one-piece version shown that places the optic for a lower 1/3 co-witness with the front sight. Other models are available in black or FDE, at various heights, with regular or tactical levers, and even a two-piece mount with a modular base that accepts different riser inserts for more versatility.

ALAMO FOUR STAR

DLOC-MICRO T1

WEIGHT:

1.9 ounces MSRP:

$119 NOTES:

The lightest Micro mount here, the Alamo Four Star places the red-dot just above the front sight post, a tad higher than absolute co-witness. It’s a one-piece mount.


DEDICATED MOUNTS

MOUNT ’EM UP

AIMPOINT MICRO

BOBRO ENGINEERING

B13-111-002

WEIGHT:

3.6 ounces MSRP:

$140 NOTES:

The absolute co-witness model is shown here, also available in low (for AK, shotgun, etc.) and lower 1/3 co-witness versions. This is a modular two-piece system, and you can swap out the risers. The rear of the riser section is serrated to reduce glare.

GLOBAL DEFENSE INITIATIVES

MT6-OSM

WEIGHT:

3.8 ounces MSRP:

$210 NOTES:

IS SU E

17

The GDI mount is available in four different heights, for lower 1/3 co-witness (shown here), absolute co-witness, low, and for gas-piston or other AR uppers which are a bit taller. Its one piece construction features a cut out on the riser to obstruct less of the shooter’s view.

REC O ILW E B .C O M

110

GG&G

ACCUCAM QD AIMPOINT T-1 MOUNT WEIGHT:

5.1 ounces (5.4 ounces with lens covers) MSRP:

$195 NOTES:

GG&G is known for its integrated lens cover systems for EOTech optics. Its integral lens covers for the T-1 and H-1 stands out amongst the crowd, providing additional protection at the expense of increased bulk and weight. The onepiece mount places the red-dot just above the front sight post, a tad higher than absolute co-witness and not as high as typical lower 1/3 height. Note that this mount does not have a recoil lug on the mounting surface with the Micro.

LARUE TACTICAL

LT660

WEIGHT:

2.6 ounces MSRP:

$107 NOTES:

LaRue’s popular, one-piece Micro mounts are available in four different heights — for lower 1/3 co-witness (shown here), absolute co-witness, low, and for gaspiston or other taller uppers. The absolute co-witness model (LT751) has a trimmed down I-beam style riser.


DEDICATED MOUNTS

MOUNT ’EM UP

TRIJICON ACOG

AMERICAN DEFENSE MFG

B3-HD

WEIGHT:

4 ounces MSRP:

$60 NOTES:

ADM again offers several varieties of ACOG and modular bases in different lengths and with different risers. They can be had with regular or tactical levers and in black or fat dark earth.

ALAMO FOUR STAR

DLOC-T WEIGHT:

2.8 ounces MSRP:

$119 NOTES:

Alamo’s ACOG mount is the lightest of the bunch.

GLOBAL DEFENSE INITIATIVES IS SU E

17

R-COM E-MODEL WEIGHT:

4 ounces MSRP:

REC O ILW E B .C O M

112

$210 NOTES:

The GDI units have four mounting holes for additional fexibility. GDI also makes a variant with a rear cantilever section to better accommodate shooters with optics that have shallow eye relief.

GG&G

GGG-1192 ACCUCAM QD ACOG MOUNT WEIGHT:

4 ounces MSRP:

$140 NOTES:

True to GG&G form, they also offer another version of their QD ACOG mount ($192) with integral lens covers to protect your optic (TA01, TA31, TA31F, TA31RCO, and TA01NSN).

LARUE TACTICAL

LT100

WEIGHT:

3.3 ounces MSRP:

$135 NOTES:

In addition to the standard LT100 model, LaRue also makes a version for compact ACOGs and one offset further rearward to position the optic farther back.


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DEDICATED MOUNTS

OTHER

MOUNT ’EM UP AMERICAN DEFENSE MFG

AD-RMR-SOCOM

WEIGHT:

NOTES:

3.7 ounces

At the risk of sounding like MSRP: a broken record, ADM again $78 makes a wide variety of one-piece mounts for mini red dot sights, such as the lower 1/3 co-witness model for the Trijicon RMR shown here. Also available are mounts in other heights and colors for sights such as the Burris FastFire, C-More, Insight MRDS, and Vortex Razor.

AMERICAN DEFENSE MFG

AD-68-H

CENTERLINE HEIGHT:

NOTES:

1.69 inches

The excellent Aimpoint ACO WEIGHT: and PRO red dot sights 3.8 ounces along with various other MSRP: small 30mm optics need $110 some love too. This is an example of ADM’s high-profle Aimpoint mount for a lower 1/3 co-witness. They’re also available in other heights and with a forward cantilever. Naturally, other colors and tactical levers are offered as well. 17

GLOBAL DEFENSE INITIATIVES

IS SU E

CMC5-OSM

CENTERLINE HEIGHT:

NOTES:

1.5 inches

GDI’s Aimpoint mounts WEIGHT: are available in several 5.1 ounces heights. The one shown MSRP: here is the standard version $275 with absolute co-witness and a slight forward cantilever.

REC O ILW E B .C O M

114

GLOBAL DEFENSE INITIATIVES

MR5-OSM WEIGHT:

3.9 ounces MSRP:

$210

SOURCES

American Defense MFG: www.americandefensemanufacturing.com Alamo Four Star: www.alamofourstar.com Bobro Engineering: www.bobroengineering.com BCM: www.bravocompanymfg.com Brownells: www.brownells.com Burris: www.burrisoptics.com Global Defense Initiatives: www.gdiengineering.com GG&G: www.gggaz.com Gorilla Ammunition: www.gorillaammo.com

JP Enterprises: www.jprifes.com Lantac USA: www.lantac-usa.com LaRue Tactical: www.laruetactical.com Precision Refex Inc: www.precisionrefex.com Sinclair International: www.sinclairintl.com SLR Rifeworks: www.slrrifeworks.com Strong Side Tactical: www.strongsidetactical.com VLTOR Weapon Systems: www.vltor.com Vortex Optics: www.vortexoptics.com

NOTES:

GDI’s Trijicon RMR mount features one-piece construction and is offered in several heights for a lower 1/3 co-witness or absolute cowitness, for gas-piston uppers, and for low mount applications like shotguns and AKs.


REC O ILW E B .C O M

116 IS SU E

17


RAT WORX GIVES THE IWI TAVOR A MAKEOVER WITH THE ZRX 9MM SUPPRESSOR BY JODY LEWIS

Part sci-fi blaster, part carbine, the

the ARClight rail, which extends the

soon-to-be released RAT Worx ZRX

Tavor’s forearm and allows for a flash-

9mm integral suppressor for the IWI

light to be mounted internally, flush

Tavor is something Han Solo would

with the end of the rail. The progres-

have killed for (and George Lucas

sion from rail to can was accomplished

IS S U E

probably would have reedited four

by the addition of a removable baffle

17

times thereafter).

system that fits into a custom ARClight

RAT Worx has been manufacturing collaboration with Manticore Arms,

suppressor. The ZRX system is comprised of

which has input on the designs and is

three parts, namely the fore-end (an

the master dealer for the end results.

extended version of the ARClight

One of its niche products has been

Commander rail), the muzzle brake, and the 9mm monolithic sound baffle. Together, this system creates a unique integral suppressor that adds just 20 ounces and 2¾ inches to the overall package. Despite the addition of mass to the front of the gun, it’s mitigated by the usual butt-heavy bullpup weight distribution, resulting in neutral balance with the can installed. The Tavor’s center of mass ends up directly over the grip and trigger, so the carbine doesn’t feel front-end heavy at all. The modified ARClight rail system accommodates Magpul MOE polymer rail segments and most Impact Weapon Components’ Mount-N-Slot accessories, allowing the user to install almost any grip, light, laser, or pressure switch.

117 REC O ILW E B .C O M

Steyr and Tavor parts since 2008 in

rail, resulting in the ZRX 9mm Tavor


INSTALLATION The ZRX system is engineered around the Tavor 9mm conversion, so the first step in its installation is converting the weapon from 5.56mm to the appropriate caliber. Fortunately this takes all of 25 minutes to complete, including fast forwarding through the various videos available on YouTube that address the procedure. This technological crutch was handy, as the installation instructions that came with the conversion kit are all but worthless. At least the kit includes almost all of the tools needed to install the new barrel, with the exception of a hammer and punch. No angle grinder required. Once the 9mm conversion kit was

IS SU E

17

installed, it was time to add the ZRX

REC O ILW E B .C O M

118

suppressor, which took a scant 10 minutes to achieve. To be exact, it took 10 minutes after the ATF eventually got around to processing the paperwork — about three weeks for the Form 3 to wend its merry way through the system, like a rat passing though the digestive tract of a sedentary taxpayer-financed anaconda. Those of

PERFORMANCE

you who actually fund the system and

the registered NFA serial numbered

want to file a Form 4 to have the sup-

part — slides into the rail for a snug

The ZRX 9mm suppressor was

pressor transferred to you…well, you

fit. Everything is held together with

first unveiled at the annual Bullpup

know how long that takes.

eight hex screws on the top and bot-

Shoot in 2014, where attendees sent

On the bright side, the ZRX muzzle

tom. It’s a pretty simple system and

more than 3,000 rounds down range

brake replaces the factory flash hider,

easily comes apart for cleaning and

through a ZRX-equipped Tavor. With

the ARClight rail replaces the factory

maintenance, in stark contrast to the

the entire fore-end and suppressor

fore-end, and the monocore baffle —

federal government.

made of aluminum, we were somewhat


SET PHASERS TO QUIET

The RAT Worx Tavor System comprises three components: the rail, muzzle brake, and suppressor core shown here.

concerned that it would eventually get

leaving the gun out in the blistering

inch barrel. The microscopic powder

too hot to handle. “The rail area is so

sun, coupled with a few mag dumps,

charge is completely burned in the

large that it takes quite a while for the

would render it uncomfortable to hold,

first 10 inches. After that, the bullet

suppressor to heat up and cause any

this could be mitigated by using the

is just loafing along, taking its own

issues,” says Allen Millhouse, RAT

many slots to mount a rail and fore-

sweet time to exit the tube — under

Worx CFO. “At the Bullpup Shoot, it

grip. Plus, there are these neat things

no particular time constraints, it

was late afternoon before the suppres-

called gloves.

cruises toward the target in hipster-

sor became uncomfortable to hold af-

Our test gun was fed 115-grain ball

esque fashion. You get the impression

ter being fired all day in the hot sun.”

ammo from Atlanta Arms and Free-

that it’ll impact just as soon as it’s

Compared to a .223, the 9mm burns a

dom Munitions, along with 147-grain

finished its latte, and when it does,

teensy bit of powder. Like a barbecue,

JHP from Winchester. With the

it’ll be totally ironic and wearing

less fuel means less heat.

147-grain subsonic offering, the Tavor

skinny jeans. Of course, there’s still

was eerily quiet, producing decibel

a supersonic crack, but that’s like, so

55-degree day in Seattle (and really,

readings in the low 120s using a non-

Soundgarden, and therefore forgiv-

are there any others?) and immedi-

scientific sound meter and a well-

able. For reference, unsuppressed

ately fed it 200 rounds consecutively

calibrated ear. The 115-grain rounds

9mm is typically around 159 deci-

IS S U E

in under five minutes. The housing

produced hearing-safe shooting sound

bels. And screw hipsters. Throughout

17

never reached a level above pleas-

levels — way better than those found

all our range time, we experienced

antly warm and was nowhere near hot

in a handgun with the same ammo,

zero stoppages, no matter what ammo

to the touch. While we imagine that

due to the length of the Tavor’s 16-

we stuffed in the mags.

We took our test Tavor out on a cool

119 REC O ILW E B .C O M


SET PHASERS TO QUIET MAINTENANCE Throwing large amounts of 9mm though a small space in an abbrevi-

also really like to see a 5.56mm can,

ing any faws in the system, but our

KeyMod and M-Lok ARClight rails in-

the conversion kit. RAT Worx says it’s

test gun showed very little signs of

stead of just the Magpul slots, but then

currently prototyping high-pressure ver-

use, even after hundreds of rounds.

again, maybe the VHS-versus-Betamax

sions, so given the impetus the SHOT

With the baffes being quite large,

debate will be settled by the time you

Show has on development schedules,

there’s a lot of room for gas and sound

read this and only one winner will be

maybe we’ll see something soon.

in its construction. “The suppressor has shown no wear at all because of its design,” Millhouse says. “The stainless steel muzzle brake takes up all the blast wear, diverting the gasses and slowing them down. The anodizing on the aluminum baffe shows absolutely no wear. Suffce to say we have no idea how long it will take to wear it 17

corpse of the rival system. We would

There are a couple areas in which we

which would obviate the requirement for

sue because of the materials employed

IS SU E

about $25. see room for improvement. We’d like

expected life of baffes would be an is-

REC O ILW E B .C O M

standing victorious over the bloodied

ated timeframe is one way of reveal-

expansion. We asked RAT Worx if the

120

magazines, and you can buy extras for

out — I don’t know if we could afford enough ammunition or guns to do so.”

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A MEMBER OF MARTIAL ARTS ROYALTY, HEATHER GRACIE IS EXPANDING HER TALENTS INTO THE SHOOTING AND BUSINESS WORLDS IS SU E

17

BY CONRAD BUI PHOTOS BY STRAIGHT 8

REC O ILW E B .C O M

124

Twenty-one years ago, a skinny Brazilian walked into a caged octagon, wearing what appeared to be white pajamas, and faced off against a Golden Gloves boxing champion in a no-holds-barred fght. The boxer, Art Jimmerson, was quickly taken down and choked into submission. The slender South American went on to submit two more larger opponents that night and became the frst winner of the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC). He was none other than Royce Gracie, and the rest, as the cliché goes, is history. It turns out that Royce’s ground-fghting and grappling skills were not an aberration, or even unique. Royce’s father (Helio), uncle (Carlos), brothers, aunts, and cousins all trained in Gracie Jiu-Jitsu. Royce’s family competed and dominated no-rules matches decades before that frst UFC event was televised to more than 86,000 pay-per-view customers. Heather Grace Gracie is a member of this prestigious grappling family and is making waves of her own. Not only is Heather an active Gracie Jiu-Jitsu practitioner and a ftness freak, but she is also a huge gun enthusiast


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GRACE UNDER FIRE who spends a lot of her time on the range when she’s not spinning the ones and twos as a DJ or working on starting up a clothing line and a supplements company. Despite her busy schedule, RECOIL was fortunate enough to catch up with Gracie and force her to grapple (pun intended) with some questions. Trust us when we say, “She can sweep you off your feet in more ways than one.” RECOIL: At what age did you start your jiu-jitsu training?

IS SU E

17

Heather Gracie: The lifestyle, the

REC O ILW E B .C O M

126

philosophy, the “Gracie Diet” — I have

was always around too, but being a girl

just have to fnd a way. These fun-

been living it since birth. I was never

I wasn’t really focused on that. I was

damentals of jiu-jitsu can be applied

allowed to drink soda, eat candy, or

very athletic, but I was more interested

to anything in life; with jiu-jitsu you

even have juice that was not freshly

in volleyball or running track at the

become better at life.

squeezed. There was a way we had to

time. The urge to know how to choke

carry ourselves. The martial arts aspect

out people usually starts once you start

A lot of practitioners end up with

driving, anyway. I started to train jiu-

nicknames on the mat. Do you have a

jitsu more seriously when I was 17.

nickname as well? HG: Reylson used to call me “little pit

Who trained you?

bull” because I was aggressive and

HG: I was training with my uncle,

relentless. I was OK with that. I love

Grandmaster Reylson Gracie, until

pit bulls; I have four of them.

he moved back to Brazil a few years ago. I haven’t been training much

How did you get into frearms?

since, but I’m missing it a lot so as we

HG: All my uncles, my cousins,

speak, I’m starting back up with my

everyone is a shooter. Plus, I live in

cousin Renzo Gracie.

Las Vegas. There are probably more ranges here than in any other city in

Did you want to train or was it some-

the world.

thing forced on you by your family? HG: I’m Carlos Gracie’s granddaughter.

What is it about frearms that intrigue

[Editor’s note: Carlos Gracie Sr. was

you?

the founder of Gracie Jiu-Jitsu]. How

HG: It’s the obvious next step. If you’re

would I dare not to train? [Laughs.] But

a martial artist today, it’s silly to train

really, it is the cornerstone of our fam-

with samurai swords, unless you just

ily, so Gracie Jiu-Jitsu is embedded in

like swords. But most likely you’ll

our lives. I love it and feel fortunate to

never carry one, or have to deal with

be born into it.

one in a self-defense situation. No disrespect to all you ninjas and samurais

What is your favorite aspect of training

out there — keep up the good work. I

in jiu-jitsu?

just prefer frearms.

HG: Jiu-jitsu is a chess game, a tactical way of thinking. It’s stamina, it’s

Do you have any formal frearms

strength, it’s discipline, it’s honor, it’s

training?

loyalty. It teaches you that even the

HG: I’m training with Fred Mastison of

most hopeless fght can be won — you

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GRACE UNDER FIRE

A JAPANESE-BRAZILIAN

MASH-UP No, Gracie Jiu-Jitsu is not the name of an

Asian fusion restaurant. It is a martial art and combat sport founded by Carlos Gracie Sr.,

HG: Yes in that order, but anything that goes pow, pow, pow!

there were other grappling innovators from the

What is your favorite frearm?

South American country).

HG: It’s not something I can just carry

BJJ burst onto the American combat-sports

around, but I really like the Heckler

scene when Royce Gracie, Helio’s son, domi-

& Koch MP5. It’s very comfortable,

judo expert and Japanese immigrant Mitsuyo

nated the frst few Ultimate Fighting Champion

it’s light. I’m good with it, and it goes

Maeda in the late 1910s. Gracie went on to re-

(UFC) events in the early 1990s. When the

perfect with my smile.

fne the chokes, joint locks, submissions, and

UFC’s popularity exploded in the mid-2000s

ground-fghting he learned by testing them

thanks in part to its reality TV show The Ulti-

That’s right, we saw you shoot that gun

against any and all challengers in no-holds-

mate Fighter, so too did BJJ’s. Not only will dis-

on YouTube. What are your goals with

barred matches. He taught his system to his

cerning eyes spot the huge infuence BJJ has

frearms?

four younger brothers, including the youngest,

on mixed martial arts and the U.S. military’s

HG: I don’t know if it’s my breathing or

Helio, who in turn modifed it further due to

combative programs, but you can also fnd BJJ

my upper-body strength, but I was al-

his smaller, frail stature.

schools popping up all over the world — like

ways naturally good at it. I’m constantly

a chain of martial arts MacDonald’s. If you

being told that I should pay attention

Jiu-Jitsu — “jiu-jitsu” being the Japanese

happen upon one, there’s a pretty good chance

to this because it’s a talent I should

phrase for “gentle art.” Though synonymous

it’s owned by a Gracie or a Gracie student.

take to the next level. I love shooting;

with the Gracies, the name Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu

After all, Carlos had 21 children and more than

it’s fun and it’s so easy for me. I’ll keep

(BJJ) is sometimes used as an umbrella term

100 grandkids — and that’s not counting the

training and see how far I can take it.

to encompass both the Gracie’s style and

offspring of his four brothers and three sisters!

those not directly affliated with the family (as

— By Patrick Vuong

What are your goals with Gracie JiuJitsu? HG: It’s always going to be part of my

Are there commonalities between Gra-

awareness. You have to be aware of the

life. Jiu-jitsu is forever. I don’t know if

cie Jiu-Jitsu and frearms training?

position of your body. Even the small-

I’m going to compete — maybe — but

HG: Discipline is No. 1, but just like

est details make a difference. You have

I’ll be training, getting better, keep my

in jiu-jitsu you have to have situational

to control your breathing. Essentially,

mind sharp.

Photo courtesy of Donevon Martinez

17 IS SU E REC O ILW E B .C O M

shotguns, or something else?

a Brazilian who learned how to grapple from

Their system was eventually dubbed Gracie

128

What do you prefer: ARs, rifes, pistols,

Heather Grace Gracie

there a lot of similarities — except in

AGE: 30

Can Gracie Jiu-Jitsu be applied in real-

HG: Oh, plenty! I’m a busy girl. I’m

OCCUPATION: Entrepreneur, DJ

life situations where guns are involved?

working on my athletic clothing line

HG: Absolutely. By the time a threat

that involves next-generation ionized

becomes real, it may be too close to

materials. I’m also looking to start a

you and you simply don’t have time

ftness supplement company spe-

to reach for your gun. Jiu-jitsu can

cifcally catering to organic, vegan,

win you time and create the space

clean-living athletes. A lot of people

you need. But some altercations don’t

don’t know that they can build serious

get to a point where you need to pull

muscles and strength the clean way.

out your gun. So it’s good to have op-

It’s a science, but it’s possible — I’m

tions — sometimes a deep choke is a

living proof. Trust me, I leg press up

clear enough message that you don’t

to 480 pounds. And lastly I absolutely

feel like getting robbed today. And if

love being a DJ, and I defnitely want

you’re the one held at gun point, your

to go all the way with that. I love trav-

chances of survival are infnitely better

elling the world and bringing the good

if you know jiu-jitsu.

times to people.

EVERYDAY CARRY ITEMS: Two “Gracie Guns” (both capable of curling 35-pound dumbbells) and a SOG knife FAVORITE FIREARM: Heckler & Koch MP5 CONTACT: Follow her on Instagram @gracegracieworld and @HeatherGracie

jiu-jitsu there is no double tap.

What’s been keeping Heather Gracie busy lately?


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RED BLOODS RECOIL OFFERS AN EXCLUSIVE SNEAK PEEK AT A GENRE-BUSTING GRAPHIC NOVEL

IS SU E

17

BY RECOIL STAFF IMAGES COURTESY OF STRAIGHT 8

REC O ILW E B .C O M

130


Jason Swarr has always broken barriers. First as a door-kicker for the U.S. Marine Corps and then as a ground-breaking artist whose photo illustrations shattered the standards of photography in the frearms industry. Now he’s at it again. His Arizona-based studio, Straight 8 Custom Photography, is about to bust through the limits of the traditional graphic novel with Red Bloods. This series is a unique mixture of the comic-book format with an epic storyline and world-class composite photography to create a new medium of storytelling. The genesis for the project came when Swarr shared the premise with friend and project manager Fred Mastison, who quickly hit the keyboard and turned the idea into complete story. Then RECOIL’s editor managed to elbow his way in front of the camera to play a character in the story. Here’s a little preview of the end result of this genrebusting collaboration. The frst edition of Red Bloods will have made its debut at SHOT Show 2015 by the time you read this, and a second edition is already in the works. All signs point to this becoming a regular publication in the near future. For updates on the series, go to IS S U E

www.straight8photography.com.

17

131 REC O ILW E B .C O M


REC O ILW E B .C O M

IS SU E

17

RED BLOODS PREVIEW

132


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REC O ILW E B .C O M

IS SU E

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RED BLOODS PREVIEW

134


F I R E A R M S

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TEQUILA: NOT JUST

FOR FRAT BOYS ANYMORE

TIPS ON SELECTING A COMPLEX AND WORTHY BEVERAGE FROM SOUTH OF THE BORDER BY MARK CHRISTOPHER LAWRENCE PHOTOS BY PATRICK VUONG

IS SU E

17

Many memories of tequila consist of

REC O ILW E B .C O M

136

Tequila has been plagued with this

the hard-learned lesson of a fun-

bad rap for hundreds of years — and

flled night, pounding shots of some

yet it has evolved into a refned sipping

cheap, harsh, fery liquid. A glorious

beverage. History records the Aztecs

evening that quickly blurs into a dark

as the frst to process the agave plant

and twisted netherworld — and like

into a fermented beverage they called

a nightmare so often does, ends with

octli, later becoming known as pulque.

a plaintive wail, our dizzy, pounding

Along with the 16th century came

heads buried inside putrid smelling

Spanish conquistadors, who kicked

porcelain receptacles. Meanwhile,

ass, took names, and arrived with

a friend or two hovers above us

knowledge of the distillation process.

giggling, snapping selfes for

Oh, and smallpox.

prosperity and blackmail, and

The people of Tequila embraced

pointing out our inconsistent

distillation (because pox-ridden ass-

aim. As if our extreme lack of

kickings were not much of an alterna-

judgment and self-control were

tive, but we digress) and, along with

the fault of the tequila, most

the conquistadors, began to process

of us vowed to never drink it again.

fermented agave, producing the frst distilled beverage indigenous to North America. Only spirits distilled in the vicinity of the city of Tequila can legally claim the title of tequila, and the powers that be will fght it out in court to ensure its authenticity. This early distillation process has become an art

SAFETY DISCLAIMER It is common sense, but bears repeating: Alcohol and frearms do not mix. Always do your drinking after you’re fnished with your shooting.

form, birthing the emergence of four different levels of aging that add to the mystique and complexity. To fully understand the complexity of tequila, one must frst understand the four levels of the aging process: blanco or silver, reposado, añejo, and extra añejo.


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TEQUILA: NOT JUST FOR FRAT BOYS ANYMORE

Blanco Popular for mixed drinks because it’s bottled as soon as the distillation process is completed. There’s no

crystal snifter allows one to explore the

remiss if we didn’t introduce you to

complex hints of woody, fruity, vanilla,

Aged a minimum of two months to a year in oak casks or barrels. Sometimes com-

a few of our favorite sippers, starting with Tequila Clase Azul Reposado. After 72 hours of slow cooking in traditional stone ovens, nine-year-old,

and toffee caramel fragrances, which serve as an appetizer. The frst sip and the taste buds co-sign on the initial conclusion of the aromatic profle. As this smooth glorious liquid eases into the passageway to the stomach, the mind interjects and realizes the entree

panies will char the wood for

hand-selected

has been served. As the warmth of

a smoky favor, while others

organic Weber

this delicious tequila starts a glow in

Blue Agave is

the chest, all the previous senses have

use new barrels to turn the fnished product around

then introduced

begun to settle into a calm quieting

to Clase Azul’s

feeling of euphoria — then something

often leaves a bit of an unrefned

proprietary strain of

unexpected happens. As a faint smile

heat that can be invigorating, let-

yeast for fermentation.

more quickly. This category

17

is served. A generous pour into a

its rough beginnings, and we’d be

Reposado

IS SU E

crafted decanter indicates that dinner

profle is complete from the distillation process. Its and at this stage, it’s ready to drink.

REC O ILW E B .C O M

Tequila has come a long way from

of the bell-like stopper on the hand-

additional aging involved before bottling, so the favor character is unmarred by outside infuences,

138

TEQUILA CLASE AZUL REPOSADO

crosses your face and you taste a

ting you know that you’re drinking a

The highest-quality spirit

slight sweetness, you fnd your usual

true unmolested spirit and not some

is then extracted by pay-

yearning for dessert is satisfed. This

watered down foo-foo drink.

ing careful attention to the pot still distillation process,

fve-star meal is complete. Clase Azul Tequila Reposado will not

Añejo

which is then triple-fltered

break the bank, but in the interest of

Aged a minimum of one year in barrels that

and fnally aged in second-use

introducing you to an eclectic variety

were sometimes used to rest reposados. However, many of the barrels come from

American oak barrels. The tequila is then presented in

whiskey distilleries in the USA — Jack

decanters that are hand-

Daniels barrels are extremely popular.

crafted and painted by

As you’d expect, this imbues many of the characteristics that favor and color the previous occupant, adding complexity to the tequila.

of sippers that are both pleasing to the palate and not taxing on the pocket, let’s explore another that recently had an anniversary...

Mexican artisans. After that exhaustive process, you’re likely asking, “But how

TEQUILA DON JULIO 70 AÑEJO CLARO As an everyday sipper you can’t go

Aging helps quiet the heat of

does it taste?” Well

wrong with Tequila Don Julio 70 Añejo

the tequila, giving it a smoother

the short answer is

Claro. It’s created from fully ripened

fnish with delicious depth of

damn good. How-

and matured 100-percent blue agave,

favor, and allowing the taster

ever, the truth of

aged for 18 months in reclaimed

to experience a truly special

the matter is that

American white oak barrels, double-

beverage.

this tequila is so

distilled, and then carefully fltered.

interesting and

Don Julio has crafted a product that

Extra Añejo

complex that it

is wholly unique and according to the

Treated the same way as

feels surpris-

maker, “redefnes the añejo category

añejo, but the aging process is

ingly simple at

by embodying the rich complexity of

a lot longer...try a minimum of

frst glance. It’s

a traditional añejo in a liquid that is

three years and continuing up

like a fve-star

fltered to restore the crisp agave favor

to whatever the market and/or

meal, complete

the company can bear. (Dayum!

from appetizer to

found in a blanco.” At frst glance the color, which is

Hurry up!...uh, please pardon our

entrée to dessert.

clear and silver, may fool you into

impatience.)

Hearing the ringing

thinking it’s a Blanco. But to hold on


TEQUILA: NOT JUST FOR FRAT BOYS ANYMORE to that thought after a whiff or a taste

you back so much that bologna has to

would make you a fool of monumen-

be the meal you pair it with. Although

tal proportions. Our ample proboscis

this one will make you appear to be a

delights in the odoriferous offering

baller, it’s a steal in the high to mid-

of a bright and lively aroma that

range price category.

opens up tones of fresh agave, wild honey, vanilla, citrus, and strawberry, balanced with aged tequila notes

TEQUILA CORRALEJO REPOSADO

of sweet toasted oak, caramel, and

We know what you’re thinking:

milk chocolate. Don Julio 70 Añejo

Some of us have flet-mignon taste

Claro juxtaposes the delicious refned

and ground-round budgets. So where

complexity of an aged añejo with the

should we look for a sipping tequila

chameleon like characteristics of a

that will pair well with Cup O’ Noodles?

silver. Along with this lightly sweet and

Well, there are many tequilas that ft

satiny body, we detect distinct notes

the bill, but one of our favorites is Te-

of citrus, honey, black peppercorn,

quila Corralejo Reposado. Moderately

and smoky agave that meld seamlessly

priced, and actually quite inexpensive

with hints of tobacco, almonds, and

at big-box stores like Costco or Sam’s

wood infuenced vanilla. It’s a veritable

Club, it’s aged for four months in a

smorgasbord of favor that will not set

trifecta of wood barrels — French and American oak as well as white oak. This is Corralejo’s own unique method

Whether making margaritas, just sip-

of infuencing the taste of the tequila.

ping neat, or on the rocks, you can’t go

Smooth, delicious, and satisfying to

wrong with Tequila Corralejo Reposa-

even the most discerning of tastes.

do. A great tequila for any budget. No matter what your experience has been with tequila, whether it was nightmare-esque or too hot and crude, or even a case of “It makes me an angry drunk,” you owe it to yourself to give tequila another try. This time, raise the bar on quality and treat it with the same respect that you would afford a great bourbon or scotch. Don’t just go at it, pounding mindless shot after shot. Instead, take the time to recognize the complexities, craftsmanship, and, dare we say, mystique of a truly fne adult beverage.


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STRETCHING TIME PRO TRAINER AND FORMER NAVY SEAL JEFF GONZALES GIVES US TIPS ON HOW TO MINIMIZE INJURY

BY JEFF GONZALES ILLUSTRATIONS BY CHRIS BYWATER

How much time do you invest in your ftness? How much time do you actually commit? I think a lot of folks go 17

about this the wrong way and, in my IS SU E

humble opinion, you need to step back and look at the big picture. When I set out on my next phase in physical training, the biggest obstacle I had to

142

overcome was my availability.

REC O ILW E B .C O M

So when we started to create my ftness programming, I looked at it slightly differently. I analyzed the total amount of hours needed to dedicate to my health, specifcally strength and conditioning training. While the whole program varies depending on the desired outcome, I work out in nine-week blocks of four workouts per week, for a total of 36 hours of training. In those nine weeks there are approximately 1,500 hours. Take out roughly 500 hours or so for sleep, then 200 or so hours for meals, and youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re left with 800 hours for family, work, and hobbies, or approximately 90 hours per week. Within those 90, can you fnd six hours (give or

WARNING!

The techniques, exercises, and content expressed in this column are for illustrative purposes only. Consult your physician before trying any physical activity or nutritional plan.

take) each week to work out?


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STRETCHING TIME HIGH MILEAGE As someone who has entered middle age, my physical ftness has become more of a priority. When I itemize my

veteran athlete’s perspective — one with high mileage — you might want to consider it carefully. As you start to get up there in the

BODY ARMOR FOR THE BODY A common question is, “What should I do to maintain my physical readiness?” No. 1 on my list is injury

workouts, I make every moment count.

age bracket, the possibility for injury

prevention. That may sound a bit

You’re not going to get any slices of

gets higher. It doesn’t matter how

odd, but trust me, it’s my top priority.

time back, so make sure you’re get-

careful you are in the gym, just plain

By having that as the focus for all of

ting maximum beneft from the time

living is dangerous. From recreational

my programs and training, it ensures

available. But let’s face it, no matter

sports to accidents, we all have plenty

training smart — so I can continue to

how cute the math looks on a piece of

of bumps, bruises, and scars to prove

train and remain healthy year round.

paper, it’s still diffcult to ft it all in a

we lived. You live a hard life and the

The day-to-day toll is rough on the

busy schedule in real life. Believe me,

injuries stack up on you. It’s true that

body, and by armoring up the chassis

I have one of the most insane sched-

you won’t be able to go full bore like

you’re giving yourself a huge bonus.

ules, but it’s a real priority to me, so

you did in your younger years, but

Yes, it absolutely is hard work, but the

I make the time. The benefts are too

you can still work hard and see major

benefts are so enriching you’ll be glad

many to list, but looking at it from a

improvements in your quality of life.

you made the effort.

IS SU E

17

COUCH STRETCH

This is good for hip mobility and opening up the entire anterior chain. Many folks lack mobility in this joint and it can be a game-changer when it is properly stretched. Use a PVC pipe to balance, and if you really want to challenge yourself, use a band attached to rigging.

REC O ILW E B .C O M

144

BANDED TRICEPS STRETCH

This works your triceps and shoulders. It is not for the faint of heart, but feels great when done. Keeping the torso tall will help get a deeper stretch — my shoulders love me after this one.


STRETCHING TIME MOBILITY AND FLEXIBILITY Listening to your body is my next key piece of advice. If you’re like me

I’d rather roll around in the sand than

folks start to take it more seriously,

roll out for a warmup, but believe me

particularly in the over-30 age group.

it’s not worth it anymore.

From a shooting performance point

and enjoy lifting heavy, you cannot

Physical readiness is not well un-

afford to be distracted or not fully

derstood by the masses, but hopefully

of view, if you want to get better as a shooter, get stronger as human.

committed to the lift. I listen to my body more and more these days. That means starting out by investing a lot — I mean a lot — of time in the mobility and fexibility department. I will literally spend half my workout time stretching, rolling, or otherwise torturing myself. Yes, back in the day

PIGEON STRETCH

IS SU E

17

Another great hip-mobility stretch. Keep your torso tight and sink into the position for maximum benefit. This is also great for your hamstrings and glutes…or at least it does wonders on mine.

REC O ILW E B .C O M

146

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Jeff Gonzales is a former U.S. Navy SEAL and president of Trident Concepts LLC, which provides clients with the full spectrum of weapons and tactics training necessary to address the challenging needs of modern warfare and personal defense. Trident Concepts’ roots come from Naval Special Warfare and bring the same high-intensity mindset, operational success, and www.tridentconcepts.com lessons learned to its training programs.


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A FORMER U.S. AIR FORCE PARARESCUE JUMPER EXPLAINS WHICH ONE’S RIGHT FOR YOU AND WHEN

IS SU E

17

BY JOSHUA VANDENBRINK PHOTOS BY PATRICK VUONG

REC O ILW E B .C O M

150

As a young man in the military, I was

after mile, we’d suggest picking up the

a hike, out hunting, practicing at the

introduced to a wide array of military

pace, always followed by a reveal-

range, or feeing a disaster, carrying a

traditions. My favorite among these

ing snicker or two. It wasn’t until the

poorly conceived medical kit can be al-

time-honored customs: secretly putting

8-mile marker that he fnally discov-

most as useless as hauling a football-

a huge rock in the bottom of a buddy’s

ered it while digging in his bag for a

sized stone. It’s time to assess what

pack before a ruck march. One time

water bottle. He was so furious that we

sort of emergency supplies you should

we did this to our team leader before

were too scared to laugh or own up to

be packing — and for what scenarios.

a 10-mile death march. The prank

it. Even to this day, when it’s brought

With medical kits there will always be

should have never worked, since the

up in his company, I act as though I

more of us who underprepare rather

rock was damn near the size of a

have no idea who did it. (Let’s hope he

than overprepare. But we suspect, by

football and had to have weighed at

doesn’t read this article.)

virtue of this magazine being in your

least 10 pounds — in addition to our

We’re all guilty of lugging useless

usual backbreaking load-out. But mile

things in our packs. Whether you’re on

hand, that you are more inclined to be prepared. So, where do we start?


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7

IFAK VERSUS MED KIT

TOP ITEMS FOR AN

IFAK An individual frst-aid kit, or IFAK, is a

requirement for any shooter, whether you’re practicing on the range or going out on a hunt. But you won’t fnd the right medical kit at a Wal-Mart or CVS. IFAKs aren’t the same as general frst-aid kits and have items specifc to treating gunshot wounds and other combat-related injuries, says Josh Vandenbrink, a former U.S. Air Force pararescue jumper. Below is a list in descending order of

importance of the top seven must-haves for

IS SU E

17

any IFAK, according to Vandenbrink: 1. Celox Rapid hemostatic gauze 2. Rolled gauze 3. ACE bandage wrap

REC O ILW E B .C O M

152

4. Chest seal Unfortunately, most med kits on the market miss the mark. It’s extremely diffcult to make a well-thought-out, high-quality med kit while hitting a price point required to be proftable.

A tourniquet is a requisite for a blow-out kit at the range, but probably unnecessary for your kitchen’s frst-aid kit.

WHAT’S AN IFAK? One of the key places to have a medical kit is in your range bag. We may be

5. Tourniquet 6. Tape 7. Scissors

very disciplined weapon handlers, but we’ve all seen other dimwitted people

But Vandenbrink warns that even if you

Furthermore, the reality is that more

who need another frearm safety lesson

have these items, they won’t do you much

often than not we’ll go through our

(or three). Anytime we’re around guns,

good if you don’t know how to use them

day making good and bad decisions

there’s potential for severe trauma.

properly: “The key to treating ballistic

and walk away unscathed, reinforc-

In the military, everyone’s issued

trauma is always going to be training.

ing our tendency to hope for the best

an individual frst-aid kit or IFAK. The

People need to understand what it is that

and never plan for the worst. I’m

principle is that each person in combat

they’re dealing with.”

right there with you. When I walk into

should carry an IFAK with enough

REI with $150 burning a hole in my

medical equipment on their body to

pocket, you’d be hard pressed to get

treat themselves, or have someone else

me to put down the fancy Nike ftness

use it to treat them. In civilian life, the

the best kit for most civilian environ-

bracelet in order to buy a med kit that

range is one of the few places where

ments or injuries. It’s comprised of the

I may or may not ever use.

it’s critical to have an IFAK-style med

gear required to perform a handful of

kit on hand at all times. If you carry

simple interventions to stabilize life-

evaluate what it is we’re doing and the

concealed or you’re always on a live

threatening injuries commonly seen in

potential injuries involved, we can walk

range, then carrying a good trauma kit

the combat environment — namely,

into the local drug store (while our

is just smart business. It’s also vitally

high-velocity trauma.

shiny new bracelet counts our every

important to take the time to get some

step) and buy the exact items we need

basic trauma training, so you know how

shrapnel injuries cause major hemorrhag-

to build our own kit.

to employ an IFAK.

ing (bleeding) and tension pneumothorax

However, if we stop to really

An IFAK isn’t all-inclusive nor is it

For example, gunshot wounds and


IS SU E

17

IFAK VERSUS MED KIT

REC O ILW E B .C O M

154

(air build-up in the chest outside of

bag and your hunting gear, but maybe

the lungs). In standard military medi-

not your hiking backpack.

cal training (Tactical Combat Casualty

WHAT’S IN A MEDICAL KIT?

Care), non-life-threatening injuries are commonly referred to as “distractors”

When building a med kit for hiking,

because it’s human nature to want

camping, or bugging out, we should

to treat injuries that look scary or are

consider different equipment because

painful, all the while missing the real

the injury patterns will be different.

issues. Distractors are injuries that

Typical hiking and camping injuries are

don’t require treatment right away

sprains, strains, fractures, dehydra-

— or at all — when there’s a raging

tion, blisters, minor cuts and scrapes,

battle still to be fought and we have

altitude issues, and super inconve-

other pressing responsibilities besides medicine. This is clearly not the same threshold of care that we have at home or out mountain biking on the weekend. In many cases, we need

nient bouts of diarrhea. We can “what Your bug-out medical kit should be personalized for your needs. Don’t rely on prepackaged frst-aid gear to serve you well when SHTF.

yards — not exactly ideal for a cut fn-

if” this stuff to death — and, sure,

ger. This is to minimize the amount of

there’s a small chance that you could

weight and mass on each soldier. Ad-

be attacked by the elusive swamp bear

ditionally, if there were Band-Aids and

of south Louisiana — but we make our

daily-use items in the IFAK, then the

best estimate based on probability.

her fnger while making dinner, and

soldier might use the supplies more

(If a potential bear attack tops your

you ran in, slapped a tourniquet on her

frivolously, thus not having it available

chart, consider a .44 Magnum for your

arm, and yelled, “Get back on that pot

when they are seriously injured. Of-

preventative medical kit...or staying

roast! Move, move, move!” You’d fnd

tentimes, they’re even vacuum sealed

home for that matter.)

yourself trying to fgure out how to eat

to keep everything clean, compact,

half-cooked pot roast while picking up

and to make the gear less accessible.

would have very limited beneft from

your teeth with broken fngers...at least

So when we take a frank look at the

an IFAK. We could get creative in

that’s how it goes in my head.

usefulness of a standard IFAK, we see

a pinch and probably come up with

that it’s not the tool for all occasions.

some really interesting solutions, but

It’s the perfect med kit for your range

given the opportunity to plan ahead,

different gear. Imagine if your wife cut

In an IFAK, the smallest piece of gauze is typically 4 inches by 3 to 4

For these types of injuries, we


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IFAK VERSUS MED KIT

TOP ITEMS FOR BUG-OUT MED KIT

With sprains, strains, and fractures,

PERSONALIZING The idea is not to go through each and every injury here and now, but

the name of the game is immobiliza-

to illustrate how easy it is to develop

tion. We can accomplish this with a

specifc medical kits for the different

couple of 4-inch elastic wraps and

aspects of our lives. Identify an event or

some sticks, branches, tent poles,

hobby that you want to be prepared for

trekking poles, and so forth. Simply

medically. Assess the common injuries

U.S. Air Force pararescue jumper, he used to fing himself out of

support the fracture site and secure

involved, not forgetting to consider your

all sorts of aircraft to help injured special operation forces. But

the joint above it and below it, with-

personal medical history. And then

his frst-aid supplies back home looked quite different.

out making anything too tight — we

evaluate the easiest and most effective

always want to make sure that we

ways to treat that pattern of injuries.

home emergency or for your bug-out bag. Medical kits for non-

haven’t cut off any circulation. Blis-

A quick Google search will produce

frearm situations should be customized based on location and pur-

ters can be taken care of with a roll

more information than you could ever

pose, Vandenbrink says. For example, the frst-aid equipment in your

of athletic tape and possibly a little

read, but if you’re going to be serious

kitchen should be quite different from the one you take on a hike.

super glue. Pepto-Bismol is a solution

about it, there are really great courses

for all occasions, and I can’t think of

available everywhere. An awesome

a med kit I don’t have it in. As humor-

way to get started is to look for free

ous as it is to see a camping buddy

one-day classes taught at larger gun

With this in mind, Vandenbrink lists the top seven requisites for your bug-out medical kit:

17

to these types of injuries?

Josh Vandenbrink is no stranger to medical kits. As a former

Don’t think the blow-out kit in your range bag will suffce in a

IS SU E

why not build a kit geared specifcally

1. Adhesive bandages

5. Gauze

diving behind a bush every half hour,

stores and outdoor stores. The cool

2. Athletic tape

6. Hydration salts

it can lead to serious dehydration and

thing is that once you make the initial

3. ACE bandage wrap

7. Space blanket

more complicated problems if you’re

investment, it’s really inexpensive to

a couple days out from the trailhead.

update your gear from time to time

The bismuth subsalicylate tablets

and replace specifc items. The more

tend to work great for slowing the loss

you learn, the more you can do with

of water, but a pack or two of hydra-

less — and the more loved ones you

tion salts make for a great adjunct.

can take care of and keep safe.

4. Pepto-Bismol tablets

REC O ILW E B .C O M

156

ABOUT THE AUTHOR Joshua Vandenbrink was a U.S. Air Force pararescueman from 2001 to 2014. He deployed 19 times in Iraq, Africa, and Afghanistan as a pararescue jumper and in other U.S. government capacities. He’s performed real-world searchand-rescue operations on land and in the water in Iceland and Alaska. In addition to his medical and rescue experience, he’s an avid shooter with a great deal of time on foreign weapon systems. Outside of work, Joshua has traveled the globe seeking outdoor adventures, from the Yukon to southern Chile. These days, he can be found

SOURCES

Camillus: www.camillusknives.com Dark Angel Medical: www.darkangelmedical.com

in the backcountry of Colorado or teaching emergency medicine to civilians and the military around the United States. Follow him on Instagram: @parajumperjosh.


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NEW COLUMN!

We pulled our web editor, David Reeder, out of the depths of virtual reality and back to the real world so he can bring you a preview of what he’s cooking up for our website.

BY DAVID REEDER

For those who use the Interwebz for more than visiting Redtube and scrolling through Tumblr and Gunblr, take a minute to see what’s going on at RECOILweb.com. We’ll be expanding on some of the articles you see in this print issue, increasing our lineup of training and evaluation videos, and, of course,

IS SU E

17

providing an in-depth look at several

REC O ILW E B .C O M

158

unique pieces of gear. We have a great team of writers — and most of them speak proper English without a funny accent like that Iain guy who edits this print edition. Aaron Cowan will have a piece on offbody-carry guns and gear, Russell Phagan has some ideas on how to customize a gun for competition, and Jarred Taylor has started a series on “feld expedient” homegrown ways to improve your comms. Coming up soon — David Merrill uses his experiences in a recent trip south of the border to talk about what it’s like to be the “protectee” on a personal security detail team versus being one of the protectors. Nathan Murr, an avowed AR-10 hater, will review Grey Ghost Precision’s “Specter Heavy.” Plus, Frank Proctor pens a feature on a “minimalist carbine.” Lastly, there

RECOILweb.com editor David Reeder walking tall

will be a somewhat less than epic tale of heroism and derring-do (damsels rescued, dragons slain, you know how it goes) as Rob Curtis pens a Q&A with yours truly. That’s it for now. Go forth and conquer. Grab your smartphone, tablet, or laptop and head to RECOILweb.com for more exclusive content. David Merrill

Nathan Murr


WANNA TRADE PATCHES? For feld medics, patches have come a long way — nowadays we have both practical and anecdotal. There’s no limit to what you’ll fnd, be it indicating what type of unit you serve in or phrases taken from the Hippocratic Oath. So whether you want to poke fun at your own health or substantiate your devotion to it, we’ve given you a few patches to pick from. Instead of the classic “meat tag” tattoo common in the military, you can also deck out your fatigues with a patch indicating your blood type. Go for the universally recognized red cross or medic indicia. Or get fancy and say “life or death” in Latin. Take a look and see which of these best suits your health and sense of humor.

1 MAKE:

Dark Angel Medical PATCH:

PATCH:

PVC Patch

Bloodtypes

COLORWAY:

COLORWAY:

Arid subdued (shown), black and grey, SWAT

Desert, multicam, forest, medical, SWAT, ACU-dark, ACU-light (shown)

MSRP:

MSRP:

$6

$3.50

URL:

URL:

www.darkangelmedical.com

www.milspecmonkey.com/store/

2 MAKE:

Blackhawk PATCH:

3

Medic Identifcation Patch

5

COLORWAY:

Black on green, green on black (shown), white on black

4

MSRP:

$10 URL:

www.blackhawk.com 3 MAKE:

Blackhawk PATCH:

2 6 1

4 MAKE:

Mil-Spec Monkey

Red Cross Medic ID Patch COLORWAY:

Black, coyote tan (shown), foliage green, olive drab MSRP:

$7 URL:

www.blackhawk.com

5 MAKE:

Mil-Spec Monkey PATCH:

Do No Harm - Spartan COLORWAY:

Desert, multicam (shown), forest, ACU, SWAT MSRP:

$6 URL:

www.milspecmonkey.com/store/ 6 MAKE:

Mil-Spec Monkey PATCH:

Stupid Allergy COLORWAY:

Arid, forest, ACU, SWAT, medical (shown) MSRP:

$3.50 URL:

www.milspecmonkey.com/store/


SPECIAL ADVERTISEMENT SECTION

SPONSORED BY


SPECIAL ADVERTISEMENT SECTION

SPONSORED BY

DPMS FIREARMS, LLC EMAIL: DPMS@DPMSINC.COM PHONE: 1-800-578-3767

MAKE:

DPMS

MODEL:

GII Recon CALIBER:

.308 Win/7.62mm NATO PART #:

RFLR-G2REC MSRP:

$1,659 URL:

www.dpmsinc.com The leaner and meaner 16-inch GII Recon is just as battle ready as the original .308 Recon. But at just 8.5 pounds, you can run it all day long, whether on duty, in a class, at the range, or in competition. It features a 16-inch 416-stainless-steel bead-blasted barrel, DPMS low-profle hunter gas block, four-rail free-foat tube, Magpul sights, AAC 51T Blackout, and Magpul MOE pistol grip and stock.

MAKE:

DPMS

MODEL:

GII AP4

CALIBER:

.308 Win/7.62mm NATO PART #:

RFLR-G2AP4 MSRP:

$1,399 URL:

www.dpmsinc.com The 16-inch GII AP4 is everything you would expect from an improvement to the award-winning LRAP4, which was the second modern sporting rife to win an NRA Golden Bullseye Award. Which was the frst, you might ask? None other than its cousin, the DPMS 24-inch LR308. The GII AP4 has a lightweight 16-inch chrome-lined barrel, AP4 stock, DPMS carbine-length Glacier Guard handguard, muzzle brake, fxed front sight, and Magpul Gen 2 rear sight.

MAKE:

DPMS

MODEL:

GII Hunter CALIBER:

.308 Win/7.62mm NATO PART #:

RFLR-G2308L MSRP:

$1,599 URL:

www.dpmsinc.com The 20-inch GII .308 Hunter is exactly that, a hunter! This gun is deadly accurate, loaded with features and benefts, but light enough to carry all day in the woods, plains, snow, or desert. It features a 20-inch, lightweight 416-stainless-steel barrel with a target crown, enhanced carbon fber free-foat handguard, Hogue grip, and Magpul MOE Rife stock.

WWW.DPMSINC.COM


SPECIAL ADVERTISEMENT SECTION


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SPONSORED BY

BUSHMASTER FIREARMS INTERNATIONAL EMAIL: INFO@BUSHMASTER.COM PHONE: 1-800-883-6229

MAKE:

Bushmaster MODEL:

Carbon 15 22 Long Rife CALIBER:

.22 LR

PART #:

90978

MSRP:

$499 URL:

www.bushmaster.com Bushmaster’s M4-style .22 LR carbine lets you train or plink all day for a fraction of the cost. The barrel is 16 inches with an M4 contour and black oxide fnish. It has lightweight carbon upper and lower receivers with a Picatinny top rail, fxed A2 front sight, six-position M4 collapsible stock, and carbine two-piece handguard.

MAKE:

Remington MODEL:

Model 700 Tactical Chassis CALIBER:

.308 Win, .338 Lapua Mag, .300 Win Mag PART #:

84474 (.308 Win), 84475 (.300 Win Mag), 84477 (.338 Lapua Mag) MSRP:

.308 Win - $2,900 .300 Win Mag - $3,100 .338 Lapua Mag - $3,500 URL:

www.remington.com Decades in the trenches with America’s military and law enforcement inspired Remington to craft the tactical rife you see here — unequaled in precision, reliability, and versatility. Leading the charge is the Model 700 Tactical Chassis. Equipped with a MDT TAC21 chassis, its lightweight, ergonomic design serves as a base for easily adding components based on your desired function. The free-foating Cerakoted 24-inch or 26-inch stainless-steel barrels deliver superior accuracy, while the Magpul fully adjustable PRS stock and pistol grip ensure shot-to-shot consistency for any shooter or scenario. The X-Mark Pro adjustable trigger, set at a crisp 3.5 pounds, allows you to take precise shots, and the AAC 51T muzzle brake keeps you on target.

MAKE:

Remington MODEL:

Model 1911 R1 Enhanced CALIBER:

.45 ACP

PART #:

96328

MSRP:

$940 URL:

www.remington.com

The accuracy and reliability that have made the 1911 an American icon now shine brighter than ever. Features include a crisp trigger, dovetailed front and rear sights, precision-machined slide and frame, and available fne-checkered American walnut grips. The new Model 1911 R1 is truly the fnest blend of exacting craftsmanship and out-of-the-box performance available today. Every element is produced with ultra-tight tolerances on equipment representing the height of modern technology. The result is a sweet-shooting advancement of a legendary design. The R1 Enhanced has a matchgrade stainless barrel and bushing, front and rear slide serrations, adjustable rear sight, fber-optic front sight, beavertail grip safety, enhanced hammer, match trigger, wide thumb safety, fat 20 LPI checkered mainspring housing, front grip serrations, and custom grips. The Remington Model 1911 R1 Enhanced is manufactured in Ilion, New York, with pride and precision, to the exacting standards you’ve come to expect from Remington.

REMINGTON ARMS COMPANY, LLC

EMAIL: INFO@REMINGTON.COM PHONE: 1-800-243-9700


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WWW.BUSHMASTER.COM WWW.REMINGTON.COM


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SPONSORED BY

ADVANCED ARMAMENT CORP.

EMAIL: SALESINFO@ADVANCED-ARMAMENT.COM PHONE: 770-925-9988 MAKE:

Advanced Armament Corp MODEL:

SR-7

CALIBER:

7.62mm NATO and .300 BLK PART #:

102756 MSRP:

$1,095 URL:

WWW.ADVANCED-ARMAMENT.COM

MAKE:

Advanced Armament Corp MODEL:

SR-5

CALIBER:

5.56mm NATO PART #:

102753 MSRP:

$1,095 URL:

MAKE:

Advanced Armament Corp MODEL:

Ti-RANT 45M CALIBER:

.45 Auto, .40 Auto, 9mm PART #:

104082 (.578-28 Threaded) MSRP:

TBD

URL:

www.advanced-armament.com

www.advanced-armament.com

www.advanced-armament.com

The SR-7 is an evolutionary fast-attach silencer for 7.62mm hosts, delivering sound reduction of approximately 25 to 39 dB. The SR-7 utilizes a variant of the AAC 90 Tooth Ratchet Taper fast-attach system that enables users to securely install or remove the silencer in less than three seconds using an intuitive motion and gross motor skills. The rock solid interface of the 90 Tooth Ratchet Taper system minimizes point-of-impact shift and enables users to fully explore the accuracy potential of their host weapon. The durable, fully welded 100-percent Inconel 718 baffe cores of the SR-5 and SR-7 are designed to minimize back pressure and features a newly designed blast baffe, providing additional erosion resistance for use with short barreled hosts. Although optimized for 7.62x51mm ammunition, the SR-7 is an excellent multi-caliber silencer that offers great performance on hosts chambered in .300 AAC Blackout, 6.8 SPC, and 5.56mm.

The SR-5 is an evolutionary fast-attach silencer for 5.56mm hosts, delivering sound reduction of approximately 32 to 34 dB. The SR-5 utilizes a variant of the AAC 90 Tooth Ratchet Taper fast-attach system that enables users to securely install or remove the silencer in less than three seconds using an intuitive motion and gross motor skills. The rock solid interface of the 90 Tooth Ratchet Taper system minimizes point-of-impact shift and enables users to fully explore the accuracy potential of their host weapon. The durable, fully welded 100-percent Inconel 718 baffe core of the SR-5 is designed to minimize back pressure and features a newly designed blast baffe, providing additional erosion resistance for use with short barreled hosts.

The best selling silencer for .45 Auto, .40 Auto, and 9mm hosts is even more versatile for 2015. The Ti-RANT® 45M (Modular) includes all the high-quality features users have come to expect from AAC, with a twist. In seconds and without the use of tools, users can reconfgure the Ti-RANT® 45M from a full-sized, 8.74-inch long silencer into a 6.75-inch compact model. The design of the patentapplied-for auxiliary baffe module encapsulates the three front-most advanced 7075-T6 baffes, incorporating a design feature that prevents the module from inadvertently unscrewing from the main tube during use. The entire baffe stack of the Ti-RANT® 45 M can be easily removed for cleaning and maintenance. Despite being optimized for use on .45 caliber hosts, the Ti-RANT® 45M provides excellent sound reduction on 9mm and .40 hosts (approximately [30 dB dry and 41 dB wet]). Conversion ASAP™ pistons are available to accommodate most popular muzzle threads found on 9mm and .40 hosts.


SPECIAL ADVERTISEMENT SECTION

MAKE:

Advanced Armament Corp MODEL:

Illusion 9 CALIBER:

9mm

PART #:

103731 (1⁄2 -28 Threaded) MSRP:

$800 URL:

MAKE:

Advanced Armament Corp MODEL:

MERCURY CALIBER:

.22 LR, .22 MAG, .17 HMR, .17 Mach II PART #:

103003 MSRP:

$400 URL:

MAKE:

Advanced Armament Corp MODEL:

AVIATOR 2 CALIBER:

.22 LR

PART #:

103879 MSRP:

$300 URL:

www.advanced-armament.com

www.advanced-armament.com

www.advanced-armament.com

Think beyond the box. The Illusion 9™ is a compact, high-performance silencer for modern 9mm semiautomatic pistols. Like the Maxim model 1910 silencer, the Illusion 9™ features an offset, non-centralized bullet path. But unlike the Maxims of old, the advanced design of the Illusion incorporates a highly evolved, patent-applied-for A.S.A.P. (Assured Semi Automatic Performance) system that ensures reliable operation on a broad spectrum of self-loading host pistols, also enabling users to quickly and easily adjust the rotational orientation of the silencer to provide an unobstructed sight picture on most hosts with standard-height sights. The tabbed, captured cone baffe stack of the Illusion 9™ can be easily removed from the tube for cleaning and maintenance without the use of specialized tools, featuring a heat-treated, 17-4 stainless-steel blast baffe with a durable nitride fnish. Sound reduction is approximately 33 dB. Users can quickly and easily confgure the Illusion 9 with adapter pistons for barrels with ½-28 and M13.5 x 1 LH threads.

The MERCURY™ is an all-stainless steel silencer for .22 LR, .22 MAG, .17 HMR, and .17 Mach II. The heat-treated and nitride-fnished monolithic baffe core design of the MERCURY™ delivers world-class sound reduction (approximately 40 dB) on rimfre hosts — all in a package under 8 ounces and just over 1 inch in diameter. The durable, patented design of the MERCURY™ can be disassembled in seconds without the use of tools into three main components for cleaning and maintenance.

The AVIATOR 2 is a durable and lightweight muzzle silencer for .22 LR pistols and rifes, weighing in at just 4 ounces. The AVIATOR 2 features a durable one-piece anodized aluminum body with a stainless steel insert with industry standard ½-28 threads. The O-ring sealed, fush ft front end cap can be easily removed using the supplied spanner tool for routine cleaning and maintenance. The easily removable stack of K-baffes employed in the AVIATOR 2 is machined from stainless steel and 7075-T6 aluminum, delivering minimal frst round pop and a level of sound reduction (41 dB) typically found on silencers costing hundreds of dollars more.


SPECIAL ADVERTISEMENT SECTION

SPONSORED BY

BARNES BULLETS, LLC

EMAIL: EMAIL@BARNESBULLETS.COM PHONE: 1-800-574-9200 WWW.BARNESBULLETS.COM

REMINGTON ARMS COMPANY, LLC EMAIL: INFO@REMINGTON.COM PHONE: 1-800-243-9700 WWW.REMINGTON.COM

Barnes VOR-TX

Barnes TAC-XPD

Barnes VOR-TX is precision ammunition loaded with the deadliest bullets on the planet. Barnes, the leader in bullet innovation, offers hunters the ultimate in accuracy, terminal performance, and hand-loaded precision in a factory loaded round. Offering double-diameter expansion, maximum weight retention, and excellent accuracy, the TSX, Tipped TSX, and TSX FN provide maximum tissue and bone destruction, passthrough penetration and devastating energy transfer. Multiple grooves in the bullet’s shank reduce pressure and improve accuracy. Bullets open instantly on contact — no other bullet expands as quickly. The nose peels back into four sharp-edged copper petals, destroying tissue, bone, and vital organs for a quick, humane kill.

BULLET TYPE:

TAC-XPD ammunition is the optimized solution for personal and home defense. Loaded with the venerable Barnes TAC-XP bullets, it’s engineered and designed to deliver top performance when most critical — in life-threatening situations. The TAC-XP’s all-copper construction and very large, deep hollow-point cavity expands, penetrates, and performs more consistently than any personal defense product on the market.

.223 REM

.308 WIN

.300 REM ULTRA MAG

.300 WIN MAG

55 grain

150 grain

180 grain

180 grain

BULLET WEIGHT:

BULLET WEIGHT:

BULLET TYPE:

BULLET TYPE:

TSX

TTSX BT

BULLET WEIGHT: BULLET TYPE:

TTSX BT

BULLET WEIGHT:

TTSX BT

3,240 FPS

2,820 FPS

3,250 FPS

2,960 FPS

VELOCITY:

.45 AUTO +P

MSRP:

MSRP:

MSRP:

MSRP:

185 grain TAC-XP

VELOCITY:

VELOCITY:

VELOCITY:

$29 per 20

$46 per 20

$65 per 20

$53 per 20

URL:

URL:

URL:

URL:

www.barnesbullets.com

www.barnesbullets.com

www.barnesbullets.com

BULLET WEIGHT: BULLET TYPE:

www.barnesbullets.com

VELOCITY:

1,000 FPS MSRP:

$35 per 20

URL:

www.barnesbullets.com

Remington UMC For nearly 140 years, the Union Metallic Cartridge Company name has been synonymous with some of the fnest ammunition made in the United States. Since its beginning in 1867, UMC has blazed a trail of innovation in cartridge-making excellence that continues to this day. UMC was the frst ammunition company to produce centerfre ammunition, the .22 Long Rife cartridge, and super-accurate “Palma Match” target ammunition. All these milestones mean one thing — experience — experience that translates into outstanding performance at a very attractive price. Remington’s UMC division makes only frst-quality product, in a limited line of popular specifcations, in order to bring you the beneft of manufacturing effciencies that keep costs low. The rife and handgun ammunition UMC makes today is the product of 140 years of design innovation and manufacturing excellence. So try UMC — and enjoy the experience. For varmint hunting, target shooting, training exercises, or any other high-volume shooting situation, UMC centerfre rife ammunition offers value without any compromise in quality or performance. Loaded right here in the USA, UMC rife ammunition offers the choice of either metal-case or jacketed hollow point bullets in several different rife calibers. You’d be hard pressed to fnd a better value anywhere. Now available in money-saving large-quantity 40-round Value Packs and 200-round Mega Packs for select calibers!

.223 REMINGTON

.45 AUTO

55 grain

230 grain

BULLET WEIGHT: BULLET TYPE:

Metal Case URL:

www.remington.com

VELOCITY:

3,240 FPS MSRP:

$9 per 20

BULLET WEIGHT: BULLET TYPE:

Metal Case URL:

www.remington.com

VELOCITY:

835 FPS MSRP:

$26 per 50

Remington Premier Match

Remington Golden Bullet

Ever hear the phrase, “Yyou could drive tacks with ’em?” Well they’re probably talking about Remington Premier Match ammunition. Using only match-grade bullets, Premier Match ammunition employs special loading practices to ensure world-class performance and accuracy with every shot. Offerings within the Premier Match line include .223 Remington, .308 Win, .300 Remington SA Ultra Mag, .300 Win Mag and the new 6.8mm Remington SPC. Maybe some day there will be a stronger word than accurate to describe Premier Match — until then the results will continue to prove it on paper.

Prairie dogs. Tin cans. Or a bulls-eye. No matter what you put in your sights, Remington offers the perfect .22 rimfre ammunition for any occasion. Remington rimfre ammunition delivers the quality you expect. That’s because Remington put the same level of care into making its rimfre ammunition as it does the centerfre ammunition, so you’ll get the maximum performance from every shot. Whether it’s getting young shooters started, practice plinking, small-game hunting, or keeping match shooters scoring high, Remington’s rimfre quality stands tall. As with its centerfre ammo, Remington put the maximum level of quality into its .22s so you can get the maximum performance out of them.

.308 WIN

.22 LONG RIFLE

BULLET WEIGHT:

168 grain

BULLET TYPE:

MatchKing BTHP URL:

www.remington.com

VELOCITY:

2,680 FPS MSRP:

$39 per 20

BULLET WEIGHT:

36 grain

BULLET TYPE:

Remington Golden Bullet VELOCITY:

1,280 FPS URL:

www.remington.com

MSRP:

$4 per 50, $8 per 100, $24 per 525 (Value pack), $69 per 1,400 (Bucket) (shown)


www.GriffonIndustries.com


17

HELMET Ops-Core FAST Ballistic High Cut Helmet w/ LUX Liner Ops-Core FAST Ballistic Helmet Cover L-3 GPNVG-18 Ground Panoramic Night Vision Goggle Wilcox L4 G24 Night Vision Goggle Mount Wilcox NVG Retention Lanyard Princeton Tec MPLS Charge Pro TCI Liberator II Communication Headset Iron Forged Concepts Sordin ARC Adapters (SARA) S&S Precision Manta Strobe Light CeJay Engineering IR Refective Blood Type Patch

MODEL: Leanna Decker MODEL HANDLE: @leannadecker_ PHOTOGRAPHER: Jorge Nuñez HAIR & MAKEUP: Liza Macawili Ramos

IS SU E

OUTFIT GLOVES: 5.11 Hard Times Gloves (Coyote) BELT: Tactical Tailor Cobra Riggers Belt: (MultiCam) HOLSTER: T-Rex Arms Prototype Redback One Kydex Drop Leg Holster MAG CARRIER: T-Rex Arms Kydex Double Mag Carrier BOOTS: Reebok CM994 Women (Desert Tan)

REC O ILW E B .C O M

170 Special thanks to TNVC.com for their assistance in this shoot.

RIFLE BCM Complete AR-15 (14.5-inch Hammer Forged Barrel, Mid-Length Gas System) BCM KMR13 KeyMod Handguard (w/ Custom Hydro MultiCam) BCM Gunfghter MOD3 (KeyMod) Vertical Grip (w/ Custom Hydro MultiCam) BCM Gunfghter Stock (w/ Custom Hydro MultiCam) BCM Gunfghter MOD3 Grip (w/ Custom Hydro MultiCam) BCM Gunfghter Charging Handle BCM KeyMod Picatinny Aluminum Rail Section (4-inch) Tango Down ARC Magazine Mk2 (w/ Custom Hydro MultiCam) ALG Defense Combat Trigger (ACT) Magpul MBUS Pro Sight (Front & Back) SureFire M600 Ultra Scout Light Insight ATPIAL-C Advanced Target Pointer / Illuminator Aiming Laser (Commercial) FLIR T75 Advanced Combat Thermal Sight (Long Range) BCM Gunfghter KeyMod Quick Detachable Sling Mount Blue Force Gear Vicker’s Combat Applications Sling (MultiCam) Advanced Armament Company M42000 Suppressor Advanced Armament Company Blackout 51T Flash Hider Griffon Industries Heat & Mirage Mitigation System (MultiCam)

PISTOL GLOCK 19 Unity Tactical ATOM Slide Unity Tactical ATOM Adapter Plate (RMR) Trijicon RMR06 Adjustable LED Tango Down Vickers Tactical Glock Magazine Floor Plate SureFire X300 Ultra


Pictured:

© Daniel Defense Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Whether on the battlefield, at the range, in the back of a police cruiser, or protecting your family in the middle of the night- details matter and the DDM4 is ready for duty. Each DDM4 model marks the culmination of over a decade of dedication by Daniel Defense to make the best rifles in the world. We offer the highest-quality AR-15 style rifles in the configurations you want most, and back them all with lifetime warranties and responsive customer service.

SEE THE WORLD’S BEST RIFLES, PARTS, AND ACCESSORIES AT: .COM


Photographed under controlled conditions, do not attempt this on your own.


LOADOUT 5.11 TACTICAL PRESENTED BY 5.11 & THE CREATORS OF RECOIL

THE RIDGELINE STORY

POSSIBLY THE GREATEST LOW-VIS PANT EVER

PG. 06

FABRIC 101

YOUR PURPOSE, OUR MISSION

PG. 08

WHEN WORLDS COLLIDE

JP AND 5.11 SET THE NEW STANDARD IN PRECISION ARs PG. 10

PLUS

FABRIC TECHFREEDOM FLEX SHIRTPLATE CARRIERSPOUCHES-


FOCUS FOCUSED ON ITS END-USERS, 5.11 TACTICAL CONTINUES TO EVOLVE

2

LOADOUT


Just another day at the offce, but something as practical as a day at a range in North Carolina is of course only complete with 5.11 gear. Shooter on the left is wearing Freedom Flex shirt, Stryke pants, and XPRT 2.0 boots. Shooter on the right is wearing Chambray Shirt, Taclite Pro pants, and Advance 2.0 boots. The smaller bag is a MOAB 10 and the rife bag is the VTAC Mk II Rife Case.

5.11 is in many respects one of those quintessential American success stories. Founded by a world-class, pioneering athlete, the company has grown from humble beginnings to become a global leader in its feld. In 1977 after seeing a gap in the market for climbing pants, Royal Robbins set up a clothing company to bring the 5.11 pants to market and it quickly became a mainstay of the outdoor world. It wasnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t long before instructors at the FBI Academy noticed that the same qualities that made for a great pair of climbing trousers also made for exceptional shooting pants and they were adopted as the offcial uniform of the Firearms Training Unit. The rest, as they say, is history. 5.11 Tactical was formed as a separate company in 2003 and since

5.11 is a proud partner of the FBI National Academy Associates, Inc.

then has defned the tactical clothing market, dominating the feld in both U.S. and overseas markets. Today, its product line covers not just clothing, but nylon gear, packs, bags, lighting,

5.11 is proud to be the Offcial Tactical Apparel and Gear Supplier to NASCAR.

footwear, womenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s apparel, and ftness gear, employing almost 400 people in the U.S. and exporting to numerous countries. No longer

511TACTICAL.COM

3


limited to one or two “law enforcement” products, 5.11 listened to what its customers wanted and now has a whole lineup that covers every aspect of the shooting lifestyle, while

“OUR INNOVATION COMES FROM OPERATORS SAYING ‘I’VE GOT A PROBLEM NOBODY HAS SOLVED BEFORE’ AND THEN WE WORK TO SOLVE THOSE PROBLEMS, THAT’S WHAT DRIVES US.” — TOM DAVIN CEO, 5.11 TACTICAL maintaining a low-vis profle. You don’t have to be a rocket scientist to realize that giving your customers a great quality product that fts their needs at a decent price might just be a good way to run a business. Next time you’re at a training class or on the range, take a mental inventory of how many shooters are using 5.11 gear, or clothing inspired by it. From a little startup with just one product, 5.11 has come an awfully long way. —— Iain Harrison 4

LOADOUT


01 TDU Rugged, durable, and inspired by the military BDU with modern features and fabric.

01

02 TACLITE PRO Lightweight ripstop trouser with a gusseted crotch and loose ft.

02

03 STRYKE 5.11â&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Flex-Tac ripstop stretch fabric makes this pant one of our favorites.

03

04 KODIAK PANT Our ultimate hard-use pant. Heavy-gauge cotton canvas and built to endure.

04

05 TRAVERSE Lightweight four-way stretch and maximum breathability.

05

06 RIDGELINE Made with stretchable ripstop Flex-Tac fabric, a proprietary fabric only from 5.11.

06

TD U

TA CL IT E

ST

RY

KE

KO DI A

TR

PR O

K

PA N

T

AV ER SE

RI DG EL IN E

FOR A FULL LINE UP OF ALL 5.11 TACTICAL APPAREL GO TO:

W W W.511TA C T IC A L.C O M

5


POSSIBLY THE GREATEST LOW-VIS PANTS EVER

6

LOADOUT


Ridgeline features eight pockets including two rear pockets below the belt line sized for AR magazines or your favorite device. At frst sight, the Ridgeline pants look more casual than tactical, but that’s the idea. When you slip them on, you may think the soft texture and seemingly tailored ft couldn’t possibly hold up to the elements — think again. 5.11 has spent countless hours engineering the Ridgeline Pants to take their licks and look good doing it. The Flex-TacTM rip-stop fabric is not only comfortable, but can endure brutal feldwork without missing a beat. Unlike many other brands where comfort and mobility are sacrifced to achieve a “tough” look, 5.11 has managed to consolidate the best features in a discreet package that’ll have you wondering how tactical pants could be so light

RIDGELINE SPECS

and perform so well. You don’t have to look tactical to be tactical. As purveyors of the Tactical Pants, 5.11 has been in the game long enough to know how to strike

6

a balance with the qualities people 7

want — comfort, mobility, appearance, and ft. The Ridgeline series is

4

proof that tactical pants can also be

3

1

Tefon® fnish for stain and soil resistance

2

6.8-oz. (231g/m²) poly/cotton Flex-Tac ripstop fabric

3

Full inseam gusseted crotch

4

Nylon knife reinforcements in the front pockets

5

Concealed rear magazine pockets sized for pistol or AR magazines

6

Integrated cell phone/ magazine pockets

7

YKK® zipper hardware

8

Articulated design

9

Double-needle stitched seams

1

done stylishly. If you want pants that won’t stand out in a crowd, but will stand up to the harshness of a day at the range, pick up pair of Ridgelines.

2

8

The Ridgeline features a low-profle fxed waistband. If you’re going to wear the Ridgeline with an inside-the-waistband holster, you may want to order a size up.

9

511TACTICAL.COM

7


FABRIC EVEN 5.11â&#x20AC;&#x2122;S FABRIC IS PURPOSE BUILT

No magazines?!? Good catch eagle-eye! These operators are conducting a team movement drill and do so without loaded weapons. 8

LOADOUT


Fabric used for clothing meant to withstand extreme conditions is not

Low-profle cargo pockets and reinforced pocket edges.

arbitrarily chosen. And when the standard materials don’t work for their intended purposes, there’s only one option — create your own blend. For example, 5.11’s Flex-TacTM is the result of meticulous experimentation to ensure that it would meet the requirements of real-world circumstances. This wasn’t just done in a

STRYKE SPECS

laboratory with white coats and clipboards hoping they got it right. It was taken out and put through the mud,

4

sweat, heat, cold, and stress of the

5

kind of situation where people would

1

expect it to hold up — and it does.

6

7

The painstaking efforts 5.11 has

2

put into creating proprietary blends won’t go unnoticed when you are conducting your own assessments. The mechanical stretch polyester

3

and high-quality cotton used in TM

Flex-Tac

were chosen over similar

materials such as Spandex, which is known for deteriorating quickly. And to protect against moisture, stains, and soil, many of 5.11’s fabrics are coated with Tefon. It’s these extra steps where trial and error paid off and culminated in something that’s as effcient as you

8

1

Tefon® fnish for stain and soil resistance

2

6.8-oz. (231g/m²) poly/ cotton Flex-Tac™ ripstop fabric

3

Reinforced front thigh utility pockets

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Self-adjusting tunnel waistband (Men’s only).

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Badge holder front belt loops

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Quick access, low-profle patented pockets

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Genuine YKK® zippers and Prym® snaps

8

Double knee with interior kneepad pocket

can get. Put a pair of 5.11 Stryke pants to the test and you’ll soon see the difference between that and whatever you were wearing before is night and day.

Watch 5.11’s XPRT training video series on their new blog — tactical360.com. 511TACTICAL.COM

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5.11 ALWAYS BE READY® EDITION RIFLES, BY JP ENTERPRISES

WHEN WORLDS

COLLIDE JP RIFLE 1

American made

2

Three different confgurations: - .223 JP-15 with fip-up BUIS - SCR-11 all-out competition rife, .22 LR, .223, or .300 - 20-inch LRP-07 chambered in .308 Win.

3

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Matches 5.11 Storm Grey clothing and equipment

LOADOUT


Like De Niro and Pacino sharing a scene together, it’s not often that two giants in the business collaborate, but when they do you can expect something special to happen. JP Enterprises is known for putting out top-notch precision rifes that have become highly regarded in the competition circuit for low recoil, minimal noise, and deadly accuracy. When the two teamed up to put out a series of 5.11 Always Be Ready® rifes to match 5.11’s Storm Grey equipment one could only do so much to keep from drooling over a badass frearm that’d match their gear. Not only does this idea make sense to have a frearm that blends in with an awesome line of kit for safety reasons, but also enables the color of your garb to be used as a weapon. So what kinds of rifes can you expect to see? The frst is the .223 JP-15 with fip-up BUIS for duty-driven purposes such as law enforcement. The second option is the side-charging SCR-11 with a low-mass operating system and BUIS included. This competition-style rife can be confgured with Pro Package upper assemblies in .22 LR, .223, or .300 Blackout. The third option is the 20-inch LRP-07 (long-range precision) chambered in .308 Win. All rifes have adjustable gas systems, cryogenically treated barrels, and create very low recoil impulse for quick sight recovery. Each rife has a Cerakote fnish in Storm Grey with laser-marked 5.11 indicias and include a full tactical rail package. Like 5.11, JP rifes are the culmination of feld experience and expertise to perfect and refne their products. We’re sure you’ll be pleased to have one of these limited-edition rifes in your collection.

5.11 has also partnered with Strider Knives on a few custom builds. 511TACTICAL.COM

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FREEDOM FLEX SHIRT BUILT TO CONCEAL

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LOADOUT


As concealed carry becomes increasingly prevalent, carriers are often presented with the challenge of making their pistols and holsters adapt to their garments without printing. How about a garment that is adapted to your frearm? The Freedom Flex Shirt was designed with this intention and done so with style and comfort in mind as well. The moisture-wicking polyester fabric allows plenty of fexibility and length to cover a belt holster without looking conspicuous. Perforations under the arms, on the sides, and across the back help your core stay cool both indoors and outdoors. A RAPIDrawTM placket for quick access to a shoulder holster is an additional feature meant to maintain mobility and practicality. Available in long and short sleeve, it’s safe to say no one will notice anything out of place about your style of dress or the protection you’re keeping a secret.

Freedom Flex features 5.11’s RAPIDraw™ system (faux buttons with break-away snaps behind) for fast access to their Holster Shirt. 511TACTICAL.COM

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Designing plate carriers is like designing a space shuttle. The slightest oversight could have life-or-death consequences. 5.11 has talked to the people who are out there everyday in situations where this type of gear is used and subsequently applied their feedback to create the TacTecTM plate carrier where form, function, and fnesse couldn’t get any better. While it will comfortably ft standard medium and large ballistic plates, the TacTecTM also incorporates other features that’ll surely make it a fxture in the world of plate carriers. A low-profle, patent-pending GrabDrag handle extends to help drag downed personnel out of harm’s way. A one-handed quick release allows the plate carrier to open up quickly to address any wounds. Yokes on the shoulder pads, a skeletonized waistband, and integrated web platform help keep a secure ft. The abrasion-resistant 500D nylon and water-resistant coating help this plate carrier stand up to tough conditions. Go try on a TacTecTM and you’ll be amazed how bulk and weight was kept to a minimum, while protection and function are at the max.

ADVANCING PERSONAL PROTECTION 14

LOADOUT


PLATE CARRIER & POUCHES 1

TacTec™ Plate Carrier features a customizable ft with an emergency breakaway system and unique GrabDrag handle.

2

5.11 offers a full range of magazine and utility pouches.

3

MOAB10 is an ambidextrous sling pack with built-in CCW compatibility.

4

TacTec Chest Rig can be worn with an H-back or Rhodesian Style X-back.

5

5.11’s RUSH Backpack collection is offered in 12, 24 and 72 hour sizes and absolutely loaded with features.

1

2 3

4

5

511TACTICAL.COM

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RANGE

DUTY

TRAINING

ADVENTURE

COVERT

WE ARE INNOVATORS WHO MAKE PURPOSE-BUILT GEAR FOR THE MOST DEMANDING MISSIONS.

5.11 TACTICAL

EDC


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