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  1. The Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) recently released footage of an officer-involved shooting in Van Nuys. Body cam footage shows LAPD officers shoot and kill a naked man who charged police wielding a 9-inch knife. RELATED STORY WATCH: Seattle Police Shoot, Kill Murder Suspect Who Pulls Knife Naked Man Wields 9-Inch Knife The incident began when LAPD officers responded to a radio call of a screaming woman. Then 18-year-old Rony Parras-Mendez answered the door naked and carrying a massive 9-inch kitchen knife, according to a report by the LAPD. Footage shows Parras-Mendez clumsily drop the knife. At this point, the video shows officers give several commands, including “Let me see your hands,” repeatedly. However, the suspect instead bends down and picks up the weapon once more. He then immediately, inexplicably, charges one of the officers. The video also shows officers respond, shooting and putting down the suspect. First responders pronounced the suspect dead at the scene. Parras-Mendez physically assaulted an adult male who lives at the apartment complex prior to the arrival of LAPD, according to the report. Authorities transported the victim to a local hospital for medical treatment. Meanwhile, all officers involved avoided injury during the incident. The LAPD’s Force Investigation Division responded to the scene. Additionally, the unit interviewed witnesses and collected forensic evidence, according to the report. Also, representatives from the Office of the Inspector General and LA County District Attorney’s Justice System Integrity Division responded and monitored the investigation, according to the report. The investigation remains ongoing, according to LAPD. The LAPD urges anyone with further information regarding the incident to contact the police department immediately. The post WATCH: LAPD Officers Shoot, Kill Naked Man Armed With 9-Inch Knife appeared first on Tactical Life Gun Magazine: Gun News and Gun Reviews. View the full article
  2. Savage Arms recently announced the release of its newest rimfire rifle, the Model 64 Takedown. Moreover, the gun comes complete with an Uncle Mike’s Bug-Out Bag, making the Model 64 Takedown a versatile rimfire package. RELATED STORY Gun Review: The Savage MSR 10 Long Range Rifle in 7.62mm NATO Savage Arms Model 64 Takedown Features Firstly, the Model 64 Takedown delivers all of the features Savage fans have come to know from this timeless rimfire. A straight blowback design operating system drives the platform. Also, the receiver is drilled and tapped for scope mounts, adding to the versatility. The 16 1/2-inch barrel is constructed of carbon steel. Meanwhile, a matte black synthetic stock should prove rugged and capable. Available in both left- and right-hand models, the Model 64 Takedown finds a home with any shooter. Also, a 10-round detachable box magazine should deliver lots of fun on the range. Above all, the takedown feature shines brightest in this package that includes an Uncle Mike’s Bug-Out Bag. Featuring a barrel nut that delivers quick disassembly, shooters simply break it down, stow in the bag and go. RELATED STORY Savage MSR 15 Competition, MSR 10 Competition HD Rifles Unveiled Savage Model 64 Takedown Specifications Caliber: .22 LR Action: Semi-auto Barrel Color: Blued Barrel Finish: Matte Overall Barrel Length: 21 inches Barrel Type: Sporter Overall Magazine Capacity: 10 rounds Overall Length of Pull: 13.5 inches Rate of Twist: 1:16 Overall Length: 40.5 inches Receiver Color: Black Receiver Finish: Matte Stock: Black, Synthetic Overall Weight: 5 pounds MSRP: $249 Savage: 125 Years Also notable, Savage celebrates its 125th Anniversary this year, a special landmark for an American gunmaker. Additionally, the company launched 40 new products at the recent SHOT Show in Las Vegas, including a 125th Anniversary Model 110 Limited Edition rifle. Above all, stay tuned for more product release information and gun reviews on Savage Arms. For more information, visit savagearms.com. The post FIRST LOOK: Savage Arms Model 64 Takedown .22 LR appeared first on Tactical Life Gun Magazine: Gun News and Gun Reviews. View the full article
  3. DoubleStar recently announced the debut of its latest AR aftermarket component, the Strongarm Pistol Tube. The pistol buffer tube works as a standalone product or paired with the company’s highly successful Strongarm Pistol Brace. RELATED STORY TESTED: DoubleStar Midnight Dragon Brings Custom Features to AR-15 DoubleStar Strongarm Pistol Tube Features Firstly, the Strongarm Pistol Tube is a pistol buffer tube that incorporates a non-rotating QD swivel pocket in the rear of the tube. Additionally, the tube incorporates DoubleStar’s SOCOM Lock Nut system to eliminate any chance of the tube coming loose during use, according to DoubleStar. DoubleStar constructs the Strongarm Pistol Tube from 6061 T6 aluminum. Also, the company hard coat anodizes the tube. Additionally, the tube features an overall outside diameter of 1.19 inches. DoubleStar Strongarm Pistol Tube Specifications Material: 6061 T6 Aluminum Finish: Hard Coat Anodized Lock System: Ace SOCOM Lock Nut Overall Outside Diameter: 1.19 inches Features: Non-Rotating Quick Detach Swivel Pocket Can be used alone or with Strongarm Pistol Brace MSRP: $59.99 DoubleStar Strongarm Pistol Brace Last March, Tactical-Life reported DoubleStar completely sold out of the then-new Strongarm Pistol Brace almost immediately. Also constructed of 6061 aluminum, DoubleStar claims the construction delivers an advantage over plastic or soft foam competitors. “With the popularity of pistol stabilizing braces on the rise, there are many that make the shooting experience less desirable because of poor materials or faulty production,” Nick Collier, director of special operations for DoubleStar, said. “We at DoubleStar know that people rely on our products, whether it is because they are military, law enforcement or serious competitors; therefore, it is extremely important to us that every part is carefully designed and manufactured in our state-of-the-art facility using only the materials and technology that will ensure our DoubleStar and Ace products will perform to our stringent standards.” For more information, visit star15.com. The post DoubleStar Brings Muscle to AR Pistols With the Strongarm Pistol Tube appeared first on Tactical Life Gun Magazine: Gun News and Gun Reviews. View the full article
  4. What happens when you combine team roping, bolt-action rifles, electronic scoring steel targets and lots of prize money into one package? You get one of the most technologically advanced, challenging, fun and rewarding long-range shooting competitions available today—the North American Long Range Shooting Association, or NALRSA. RELATED STORY Ruger Hawkeye Long-Range Target Extends Precision Capabilities No, shooters aren’t expected to jump off galloping horses or wrestle steers into submission while shooting their rifles, although that could be fun. NALRSA uses team roping for its ranking and handicap classification system, something that the organization’s co-founder, Steele Montague, came up with. He’s a proud Texan, an avid long-range shooter and reloader, and a former team roper. As Montague put it, “We want to create the most friendly shooting environment that we can, from novice to professional—everybody has a fair shake.” While it might sound a bit unbelievable, I assure you it’s not. In fact, Montague contacted the gentleman responsible for the team roping classification system and asked if he could use it for their rifle competitions. “I wanted to be sure that we wouldn’t run into problems,” Montague told me as we shuttled from Brady to Comfort, Texas, in a NALRSA-banner-wrapped Dodge dually. I was about to get my first taste of this new competition series. Steele On Steel Montague and his three original partners came up with the idea for NALRSA. They found themselves desiring more after shooting in rifle competitions that didn’t adequately reward shooters for their efforts. “There was a match we shot in, but it didn’t payout…Once we decided to mirror the team roping system, that was it.” That was back in October of 2016, and the first NALRSA match was held in Bandera, Texas, in May of 2017. They had 71 entries with a guaranteed $25,000 payout. That’s right: $25,000. Obviously, such a significant financial reward is one of the most obvious factors that separates NALRSA from other precision shooting series out there, but there’s more. While other competitions are limited to shooters of a certain skill level or physical ability, the NALRSA is much more accessible. In the match I attended, for example, four of the competitors were children ranging from 10 to 12 years of age, and while most of us shot from prone positions, one competitor was able to use a shooting bench because of a prior injury. NALRSA Matches: A Blend of Disciplines Also, while F-Class and benchrest shooters poke holes in paper, and PRS and other series strive for impacts on steel, NALRSA matches combine these competitive elements but with a technological twist. Competitors face off against 14-by-15-inch steel plates with electronic sensors that precisely record impact locations. The sensors break this information down in real time and send the results wirelessly back to the shooter’s position. An iPad displays the target with scoring rings so the shooter can make adjustments on the fly to get better results. Of course, other competitors can see the impacts, too, via large viewing screens as well as their own personal smart devices through a downloadable app. That’s right, precision rifle shooting has entered the 21st century. Another twist is that a 2-by-2-foot steel faceplate is placed 8 inches in front of the scoring plate. This faceplate has a 12-inch cutout in the center, exposing the sensor-equipped scoring plate. So, you have to shoot through a 12-inch hole to hit the scoring plate. The exposed target dimensions don’t change regardless of distance. Poorly aimed shots will obviously miss the target altogether while more accurate shots might impact the faceplate. While these impacts aren’t recorded, strategically located Target Cams allow you to see if you’ve impacted the faceplate to make the appropriate corrections. In short, the whole system is designed to help you see your misses at distance. Breaking It Down Every NALRSA match begins at 500 yards, and each shooter is allowed to fire 10 rounds in three minutes. Further, the goal is to shoot the best group possible. The scoring rings are broken down into a 10-, 8-, 6- and 5-point sections. The more points you rack up, the higher your ranking. If you get 80 points, your ranking is an 8. If you score a 65, your ranking is a 6.5. Scores are rounded up or down accordingly. You maintain your rank until you place high enough in any event to receive a payout. There is one payout for every seven positions. If there are 21 competitors, the top 3 will receive payouts. If there are 50 competitors, the top seven will. So, if you hit a 7 ranking in your first NALRSA match and an 8.5 in your second, you can’t officially rank higher until you place high enough to receive a payout. NALRSA Matches: What’s In It For Me? How does this benefit lower-ranked shooters? There are different types of NALRSA matches or “formats” that limit the rankings of shooters who can compete. A Format 1 shoot is an open match for all shooters while a Format 2 is classified and may be limited to those ranked 7 and under, or 8 and higher. A Format 3 is a specialty shoot where the distances are extended and the payouts are particularly hefty. The grand prize for the Format 3 shoot in August of 2018 was a brand-new Dodge truck. You must be an NALRSA member to compete, and there are two types of memberships. Silver memberships are $100 per year while the Platinum is $350 per year. “Silver may be good for the occasional competitor or tightwad,” Motague said. I couldn’t help but laugh out loud. “The Platinum allows you to pre-shoot each match in the location where it will take place, the day before.” RELATED STORY WATCH: All 6 Episodes of Our Long Range Precision Shooting Series for Free On The Clock It was exciting to participate in an NALRSA shoot, and even though this one didn’t payout, the competition was real with real bragging rights. The four junior competitors—two boys and two girls—weren’t planning on taking it easy on me, so the pressure was on. And yet I must admit that NALRSA has shooting comfort in mind. We laid prone on specially prepared concrete shooting stations that were covered by tents, allowing four competitors to shoot at one time. Once I was called to the shooting station, I had one minute to prepare my equipment. A small traffic signal with red, yellow and green lights lets the shooter know when it’s time to start and stop. Once the minute expired, I sent the first round of my handloaded 6mm Creedmoor into the constantly shifting winds and hit the faceplate high, giving me a good idea of where to go from there. After that, my remaining nine rounds all found their way through the 12-inch circle, and I ultimately scored a 68, giving me a 7 ranking. Not bad for my first run. I finished with only 34 seconds remaining on the clock and was surprised by how quickly the time passed. In the Groove It took me a couple of stages to get used to having the iPads and such valuable information available at a glance. I didn’t want to move my head from the gun and realized I needed to set the iPad up better before I started my stage. Initially I was relying on my optic and the sound of the impacts on steel, but the electronic scoring was way ahead of me. The second string of fire stretched to 700 yards, and I scored 57 points out of 100. Difficulty bucking the wind kept most of my shots in the 5- and 6-point rings, although my holds delivered excellent vertical consistency. I was feeling pretty good going into the final stage until I found out that 12-year-old Colton Mays was spanking everyone with his 6mm Creedmoor. This was going to be a hard lesson indeed. The final stage took place at 1,000 yards—more than 300 yards short of the originally planned distance, thankfully. It’s these stages at extended distances that can allow competitors who are down in the pack to make significant comebacks, and that’s exactly what happened. Paul Reid, an incredible shooter, came back in the last round, landing seven of his 10 to score a 58. He racked up some $18,000 in NALRSA winnings last year. I managed 25 points before experiencing gun/ammo-related issues on my last two rounds. This forced a pause in my string of fire, and I wasn’t able to reconnect on the scoring rings after coming off the gun. All in all, I was happy with my performance. Colton Mays came in second place. NALRSA Matches: Experience More I had a lot of fun at the NALRSA match. Additionally, this series should attract anyone with a decent grasp of long-range shooting. Also, with a gun, an optic and 30 rounds of ammo, you can have the time of your life, and you’ll meet some of the nicest people and fellow shooters anywhere in the world. Finally, my welcome was warm, and the camaraderie was infectious. If you’re like me, you’ll eventually grow tired of shooting the same old targets in the same old places, and you’ll want to experience more. If that’s the case, you may want to explore all of the competitive rifle shooting options available to find which is best for you. NALRSA matches use helpful technology, and the physical requirements aren’t a limitation to most shooters. It’s a good way to cut your teeth and grow as a precision shooter while possibly taking home some decent chunks of change and other cool prizes. For more information, visit long-range-shooting.com. This article is from the November-December 2018 issue of Tactical-Life magazine. Grab your copy at OutdoorGroupStore.com. For digital editions, visit Amazon. The post Long-Range NALRSA Matches Equal Not So Easy Money appeared first on Tactical Life Gun Magazine: Gun News and Gun Reviews. View the full article
  5. Volquartsen Firearms recently announced its newest aftermarket accessory, the TG9 Trigger Group for the Ruger PC Carbine. Moreover, the unit delivers a 2.25-trigger pull to Ruger’s newest carbine variant. RELATED STORY Volquartsen introduces mid-priced .17 HMR semi-auto rifle “The TG9 idea really came from the ongoing requests of our customers,” said Volquartsen President Scott Volquartsen. “For over a year now, we were receiving requests from customers asking about a trigger group for the Ruger PC9, or if there was a way they could modify our TG2000 to work in that platform.” The TG2000 is Volquartsen’s popular drop-in trigger group system for the Ruger 10/22 platform. Further, Volquartsen earned high praise over the years for the comapny’s work with the 10/22. As such, Volquartsen produces high-end components for the system, including trigger systems, barrels and receiver groups. Above all, the company takes the 10/22 to new heights and is a staple in rimfire competition circles. Earlier this month, Tactical-Life chronicled the home run that is the Ruger PC Carbine, the company’s latest take on the ever-growing pistol-caliber carbine movement. The Ruger PC Carbine utilizes a takedown design to deliver tremendous versatility. Further, the carbine features the ability to use either Ruger or Glock magazines, a brilliant move by Ruger. Finally, since the gun’s trigger system enjoys commonality with the 10/22, it only makes sense Volquartsen should get onboard with the PC Carbine. Volquartsen expects the TG9 to ship beginning in mid-April. However, customers can preorder their unit now on the company website. For more information, visit volquartsen.com. Volquartsen TG9 Features Materials: CNC-machined trigger guard Manufacturing: Wire-EDM cut internal parts Overall Trigger Pull Weight: 2.25 pounds Adjustments: Pre-travel and overtravel Overall Weight: Approximately 6 ounces MSRP: $273 The post Volquartsen Announces TG9 Trigger Group for Ruger PC Carbine appeared first on Tactical Life Gun Magazine: Gun News and Gun Reviews. View the full article
  6. What if I told you the British SA80 squared off in a gun fight with the U.S. military’s M4? This SA80 versus M4 scenario took place as part of a combined-force exercise between Marine elements. RELATED STORY VIDEO: Comedian Bill Burr Watches Green Beret Training and It’s Hilarious U.S. Marines from 3rd Battalion, 3rd Marine Regiment, 3rd Marine Division conducted a force-on-force exercise recently with U.K. British Royal Marines with 45 Commando. Moreover, Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center, Twentynine Palms, Calif., hosted the training exercise. The Marines designed the exercise to create a challenging, realistic training environment to produce combat-ready forces capable of operating as an integrated Marine Air Ground Task Force, according to a Marine Corps report. Footage shows Marines from both sides conducting MOUT techniques, maneuvering in and out of buildings and breaching entryways. Further, the video shows various elements coordinating and communicating throughout the different scenarios in this urban theater. SA80 Versus M4 Of note to shooters is the opposing arms used by both elements. The U.S. Marines of course carry standard versions of the military’s M4 system. Conversely, Royal Marines carry updated variants of the famed, and sometimes infamous, SA80. Royal Marines first fielded the SA80 in the 1980s, with several upgrades to fielded weapons occurring throughout the intervening years. The SA80 is the last weapon system manufactured at the famed Royal Small Arms Factory, once home to the Lee-Enfield family. Last year, the UK Ministry of Defense awarded NSAF Limited, a Heckler & Koch subsidiary, with a $95 million contract to upgrade the L85A2 bullpup platform to the SA80A3. Moreover, H&K’s award calls for the company to modify 44,000 units in 5.56x45mm. Meanwhile, the U.S. military’s M4 is again subject to another U.S. Army solicitation. Additionally, Tactical-Life covered the search extensively last year. However, the Army published a revised solicitation for bids just last month. So stay tuned. The post WATCH: SA80 Versus M4, British & U.S. Marines Force-On-Force Training appeared first on Tactical Life Gun Magazine: Gun News and Gun Reviews. View the full article
  7. SIG Sauer recently announced its newest variant of 300 BLK ammunition. Additionally, the line features a 120-grain supersonic 300 BLK SBR Elite Copper Duty load. Moreover, SIG designed the new offering for short-barreled rifles. Also, SIG engineered the ammo “for reliable, controlled, 1.8X expansion, and superior feeding out of rifles with sub-9-inch barrels,” according to SIG. RELATED STORY SIG Sauer M18 Sets New Standard for Army MHS Reliability Testing SIG Sauer 300 BLK Elite Copper Duty Firstly, the supersonic SBR Elite Copper Duty ammunition features an all-copper bullet and black oxide shell case to visually denote SBR capability. Also, velocity is 1,897 fps with muzzle energy of 959 ft-lbs out of a 6 ¾-inch barrel. “The new 120-grain supersonic SBR Elite Copper Duty ammunition delivers the highest terminal performance possible in short barrel AR-style rifles, something the professional community has been asking us to provide,” said Brad Criner, Senior Director, Brand Management and Business Development, SIG SAUER Ammunition. “Our various SIG Elite 300 BLK ammunition loadings have been well received by match shooters, hunters, and law enforcement and government agencies, and there will be more exciting 300 BLK offerings from SIG in the weeks to come.” SIG Elite Copper Duty ammunition uses flash-reduced propellant to minimize visible signature while shooting in low-light situations. Also, the ammo features premium-quality primers to minimize variations in velocity. The SIG SAUER 120-grain supersonic 300 BLK SBR Elite Copper Duty ammunition is now available for purchase at the sigsauer.com/store. SIG Sauer produces all of its Elite Ammunition products in its state-of-the-art ammunition manufacturing facility in Jacksonville, Arkansas. According to SIG, the company produces ammo to exacting standards. For more information, visit sigsauer.com. The post SIG Sauer Releases 300 BLK Elite Copper Duty Ammunition appeared first on Tactical Life Gun Magazine: Gun News and Gun Reviews. View the full article
  8. While the use of laser sights for hunting is still relatively uncommon, there is ample reason to expect their use to expand. At present, most states don’t permit the use of lasers or lights on firearms when hunting protected big game such as deer, but most states allow their use for hunting wild hogs (and other pest animals) and about half the states allow them for small game. Laser sight purchases have easily doubled in the last decade. Though most laser sights are ending up on personal defense handguns and tactical rifles, the same things that make the lasers useful on these firearms apply to hunting guns. RELATED STORY Crimson Trace Expands Rail Master Laser/Light Line With 6 New Models Laser Sights for Hunting: Pros & Cons Among the benefits are more confident target acquisition (particularly in low light); the ability to focus the eyes entirely on the target area, which is beneficial for following the movement of your target animal as well as a great help to aging eyes. The ability to aim the firearm accurately in a “heads-up” manner, rather than with the traditional marksmanship holds we use to shoot with iron sights and scopes. The laser can also be used to point out game to other hunters, and the visual indication of the bullet’s impact point is a constant reminder of the need for safe gun handling and muzzle control. The downside is that the laser’s maximum range is limited by both its power and (more likely) your eyesight. Laser light is diffused somewhat by humidity in the air (rain or fog). The point of impact is less precise the farther you get from your target, and it can be difficult to spot the laser dot in bright light. Laser sights require batteries and most are not waterproof. Lasers aren’t yet universally legal for hunting in all states, either. Hunters need to check their own state’s specific laws before using them. Lasers have a definite place on hunting rifles, handguns, shotguns and bows for use on terrestrial animals large and small, as well as fish. Duck hunting, or any other wingshooting, is out though. There’s no way to see the laser dot against the sky to track a bird in flight, and aiming your laser skyward is a threat to civil aviation. In addition, if you are good enough to put a laser on a flying bird, you don’t need a laser sight. Where They Shine Laser sights can be a significant advantage in the woods, in dimmer light and heavy cover, but lasers also have night hunting applications (for example, for raccoons, foxes and wild pigs) where conventional scopes and sights would be difficult to use. The laser excels on the hunt for terrestrial animals at ranges you would normally shoot with open sights, 100 yards or less. There’s no magnification or optical enhancement of any kind with a laser sight, only your natural visual acuity and the laser dot. If you can’t see the game with your eyes, a laser isn’t going to help you at all. However, most older hunters don’t have trouble seeing the game. They have trouble seeing the iron sights, and this is where a laser sight shines. Because it puts target and aiming point in the same distant focal plane, it compensates for the loss of close focus that typically affects human eyes as they age. People under 40, have you ever wondered who’s buying all those reading glasses on display in every pharmacy and big box store? You get farsighted as you get older, and this can make it very hard, if not impossible, to see your rear sight clearly enough to get a good sight picture with open sights. (Aperture sights can still be more or less usable, since the rear sight is supposed to be out of focus anyway.) Growing Dot If you wanted to have a magnified view of your target, there’s no reason you couldn’t use a telescopic sight in conjunction with a side- or bottom-mounted laser sight. This would partially negate the situational awareness the laser allows, in return for some greater precision. I say some, because the front of the laser beam fans out more the farther away it goes. The beam is typically 0.5-inch diameter spot at 50 feet. I measured it at 50 yards and found it grew into a fat ellipse over 2 inches at its widest point. The green laser will project over 100 yards in sunlight, but that dot is going to get even bigger. The growing dot phenomenon begs the question: Do the animals notice the laser? I suspect they do, but not in the spectacular way we see it. They get shafts of light penetrating the forest canopy and shining on their bodies, so a laser dot doesn’t seem like it should be so unique. I would not make a point to shine it in their eyes. That might get their attention, annoy them and cause them leave before you can shoot. Pistol Hunting Laser sights seem particularly good for pistol hunting, where the ranges are closer. Further, I find that not having to get down on the iron sights or scope in a traditional marksmanship pose allows me to shoot from more comfortable and stable heads-up positions. When you elevate your head over the iron sights, the laser dot appears to rise over them too, and this is one of the advantages of the laser in the field. Unlike traditional marksmanship, which concentrates on maintaining perfect sight alignment while taking aim at the target, shooting with a laser sight is all about watching the dot. I’ve hunted squirrels from a seated position resting the barrel on a little Polecat shooting stick with my arms steadied on my knees. Initially, I had a little trouble spotting my laser dot because the trees were bare and a lot of sky was showing. The solution was to aim at the ground in front of me and “walk” the laser right up to the target. It actually takes more time to describe than it does to do it. Red Or Green? The color of your laser is important. Red lasers are the least expensive, have the longest battery life and are excellent for close-range defensive shooting. In daylight on the range, I find them hard to spot at 25 yards. The newer green lasers are the best choice for hunters. They really pop out to the eye downrange, even in sunlight. That’s because our eyes see green light wavelengths much better than red ones. The green lasers are more complex to make and retail for about 25 percent more than red. Going green will also use up your battery power about twice as fast, but this is really a non-issue while hunting because there’s no reason to turn the laser sight on until you are preparing to aim your gun. Whether you have two hours or four hours of battery is not going to matter during the course of a season. Most laser sights are designed to attach to Picatinny or Weaver rails, which is great if you have a tactical rifle, shotgun or pistol. Most traditional (bolt-action) hunting rifles and shotguns will need a rail attached before they can mount a laser. If it’s a newer gun, it’s possible the scope mounts are already attached to small sections of rail screwed onto the receiver. That makes mounting the laser a snap. Take off the scope and rings, mount the laser to the same base, tighten it up and sight in. Crimson Trace By far the largest laser sight manufacturer, and the market leader, is Oregon-based Crimson Trace Corporation (crimsontrace.com). They have the broadest range of green laser options for hunters. Their compact, lightweight plastic housing Rail Master green laser (CMR-206) was designed to fit in front of a pistol’s triggerguard on a rail. It is turned on by tapping a small paddle on either side of the case. MSRP on this sight is $199, but I’ve seen it at major retailers for as low as $159.99. This is an excellent sight at an entry-level price. Mounting it on top of your gun requires it to be upside down. This doesn’t affect its function, but it might make it more susceptible to rain since the battery cover will be facing up. As a precaution, just cover it with a piece of clear packing tape to keep it dry. Just don’t obstruct the beam. They also make a J-frame green laser grip (LG-350G, MSRP $399) ideal for the .22 Kit Gun (the laser mounted in the right-side grip panel), but none yet for the popular larger-frame hunting revolvers. RELATED STORY Should You Choose an Image Intensifier or Thermal? Light & Laser If you want to get a little more sophisticated, Crimson Trace makes the Rail Master Pro (CMR-204) which is boxy, slightly larger and heavier (its case is made of aluminum) because it includes a 100-lumen white LED light, which can be operated alone or in conjunction with the laser. The light and laser combo would be great for raccoon hunting at night with a pistol or rifle, but some might find this unit a little too big for mounting on the top rail of a traditional sporting long gun or pistol. It would be perfectly at home attached to the tactical rail near the muzzle of a modern sporting rifle. The CMR-204 has an MSRP of $379, but I have seen it advertised for $350. Going Green Crimson Trace has three great rail-mounted combination green laser and light products specifically for railed-up modern sporting rifle platforms that are out-of-the-box perfect for hunters who prefer these rifles. The new CMR-300 is like the CMR-204, with a brighter 300-lumen light and an on-off button on the back. MSRP is $249. This would be commonly mounted on the bottom rail near the muzzle, which means you’ll have to reach forward to activate it. To address this minor inconvenience, Crimson Trace created a new wireless radio signal-operated unit called the LiNQ system. The LNQ-100G requires substitution of your normal pistol grip with the LiNQ grip, which houses all the light and laser controls so there’s no need to move your hands from firing position. Otherwise it uses the same green laser and 300-lumen white LED light as the CMR-300. MSRP is $429, but I have found it as low as $384 on sale. There’s also a LiNQ system for the AK platform. The final laser/light combo from Crimson Trace looks more at home on a tactical rifle than a hunting gun, but consider that your AR carbines, especially in 300 Blackout, are popular for tough wild hogs. The Crimson Trace MVT-515G is an extremely rugged aluminum and polymer vertical foregrip that houses the laser and a 200-lumen white light. Also, the controls are ambidextrous, and the light operates in momentary and constant-on mode, with or without the laser. MSRP is $649, but I have seen it as low as $575. By the way, all these lasers/lights have a strobe setting if you needed to use them in conjunction with the laser in a defensive situation. Other Green Lasers Crimson Trace is the biggest game in town, but they aren’t the only one. Four other rail-mounted green laser sights worth a look are made by Viridian (viridianweapontech.com) and LaserMax (lasermax.com). Viridian’s rugged C5 Universal Subcompact Green Laser has an MSRP of $279. Additionally, the C5L adds a white light in the same size unit (MSRP $349). Viridian has a seven-year warranty too, the longest in the industry. LaserMax’s Green Uni-Max Laser (MSRP $309) has the lowest profile, operated by direct-wired remote trigger, and has a rail of its own so you can stack something else on top of it. Finally, LaserMax’s Green Micro II is the shortest rail-mounted laser, with an MSRP of $169. Trigger control and a steady hand are still critical to successfully hitting the target, but the visual challenges of iron sights and low light, and even some physical limitations, can be partly overcome with the use of laser sights. Also, for younger hunters with first-person-shooter video game experience, lasers will seem perfectly natural, and new or occasional hunters will find a laser increases their confidence and success within the laser’s effective range. Above all, hogs, little varmints and some deer, beware. This article is from the 2019 Modern Guns issue of Tactical-Life magazine. Grab your copy at OutdoorGroupStore.com. For digital editions, visit Amazon. The post How Laser Sights for Hunting Can Improve Your Odds in the Field appeared first on Tactical Life Gun Magazine: Gun News and Gun Reviews. View the full article
  9. There’s no point in prolonging it, or holding off till the end, I’ll just come right out and admit it now: I like this snub-nosed blaster. A levergun grabs me by the collar, a 16-inch barrel snatches my eye, a big-loop lever crowbars me back to my childhood, a .45-70 curls my toes. Put ‘em all together, and I’m a gonner. RELATED STORY FIRST LOOK: Marlin Model 336C Curly Maple Adds Classic Lines And, put ‘em all together is exactly what Marlin’s done in late 2017. Built on the beefy 1895 frame, this one offers a trim-totin’ all-weather package of bead-blasted (not satin) stainless steel and water-resistant-coated birch furniture that’s intended for tight spaces, tough country, easy foot carry, and power on demand when a lesser squirrel gun just doesn’t get the job done. Firstly, I knew this one was in the works, and had to wait impatiently for several months for Marlin to get production rolling. Once they did, they kindly got a test sample packed on the big brown Christmas truck, and out of the box it immediately rivaled one of my favorite rifles, the old trusty Marlin Guide Gun that’s currently working through its second ATV and seen more trail dust than any other rifle I own. Trapper Configuration The two guns obviously share a common basic concept, but the Trapper’s 16.5-inch Ballard-rifled barrel shortens the newer gun by two inches below the Guide’s 18.5 barrel, and it extends the magazine capacity from the Guide’s four to the Trapper’s five. While this does involve a trade-off in velocity loss through such a short barrel, the gain of that one additional round all loaded up and ready to go can make a difference in both your peace of mind and a piece of whatever large & furry [please leave intact as written] might be facing off for a charge in the wilds. This is where I personally think the “ancient” .45-70 caliber shines, incidentally, and it’s why I chose it over anything else in a quick-handling levergun for the back country. The Trapper’s pistolgrip wrist is another variation on the theme, and I will say here that I’m ambivalent on this. The pistolgrip’s arc gives the shooting hand a more natural angle in use, but it also requires a longer wrist throw on the lever to cycle the bolt. The lever starts out at a lower angle from the bore-line at rest, and it has to travel farther forward away from the body to move the bolt the same distance rearward. This is further magnified by the big lever loop, and the net result is that you end up with a notably longer arm extension in use. A notably longer arm itself comes in handy to compensate, and the pistolgrip profile may make a difference to traditionalists who feel that if there’s one thing John Wayne taught us, it’s that the quintessential levergun should have a straight wrist. But, otherwise it’s largely a matter of personal preference, and it didn’t take long to get used to the lever throw at the range. Big Loop Style I know- it’s Hollywoodish, which is exactly why it appeals to ingrained Chuck Connors memories and the Hubley Rifleman capgun that saw me through so many adventures when I was seven years old. The big loop lever actually slows cycling down in real life, which the Cowboy Action Shooting sport proved quite a while back, but….it’s just so cowboy cool that it instantly adds style points galore to any lever-action it’s installed on, and if anybody calls you on it, you just say “It’s for the gloves. Honest.” This can work anywhere from the Klondike to the Everglades, just wave the appropriate type of glove as needed to make it convincing. There are target sights, hunting sights, and quick-reaction sights that sorta split the difference. In a gun like this, you want a clear sight picture that picks up in a hurry, but those sights need to be big, precise, and adjustable to match up with your preferred load. Considering the very wide range of possibilities in the caliber in factory ammunition alone, not to mention the wide-open world of handloading, you can count on this Marlin to toss out mild lead 405s at 1300 feet per second through heavy lead 540s at 1400 FPS to jacketed 300s at 2200 FPS (or thereabouts, considering the barrel length); and that much variation in potential bullet trajectories absolutely demands a sighting system that can give you enough elevation adjustment to compensate. Skinner Sights Marlin chose Skinners for the Trapper, using appropriately the stainless steel “Trapper” rear base and post, with a blued .125” insert that can be removed for use leaving the resulting aperture at .200” as a ghost ring option, paired with Skinner’s two-screw white-line Bear Buster ramped front blade. Skinner sights are a popular choice on working rifles, and the sturdy combo on this short Trapper carbine comes with plenty of adjustment for both windage and elevation. But- those adjustments are not click-adjustable, and they do require a small hex wrench to make. To adjust for elevation, loosen the locking screw in the right side of the base, screw the aperture post up or down as needed to raise or lower bullet point of impact, then tighten up the locking screw again. Windage is done by loosening the rear sight base main screw on top, carefully swiveling the back end of the base left or right slightly to whatever position centers your bullet impact, and then snugging that back screw down tight. A hint here: you can also loosen the front base screw while you’re adjusting for windage, but if you leave it tight it’s easier to just make small back-end movements without overdoing and wandering farther than you intended. Once you move that back end, there are no markings to use as reference points to return to where you started. Zeroing the Marlin Model 1895 Trapper Plan on zeroing your gun at the range with your best load, and don’t expect to be making quick changes in the field without a wrench along. This isn’t a criticism, just an advisory. I’ve used Skinners elsewhere and talked to Andy Skinner personally; he takes his operation seriously and puts out a quality product line. He also offers five different aperture sizes on his www.skinnersights.com site, so you can personalize there, and the front Bearbuster blade is machined from solid barstock at .500”, with options at .570” in all-blue steel, white-line, and brass. Additionally, he can match his sights to any .45-70 load you’ve got, if it falls outside the range of what comes on the Marlin. Marlin Evolution Something else we should get into before we go much further- the Post-Move Marlin Quality Issue. No denying it, fair to say that the leverguns Marlin turned out during the period immediately after the move from the aging plant in Connecticut to the new plant in New York had several quality problems. During the process of integrating new equipment and new employees, it’s been a steep learning curve. But, the good news is that the company has been making steady improvement in bringing back older models that were temporarily suspended, bringing out new models, and bringing up overall quality levels. My oldest Marlin dates to roughly 1905-1915, and I’ve owned and worked with several over the years. I saw the decline before and after the move, and for several years afterward I’d look, but never saw one I thought was back close enough to snuff to work with again. I’ve seen enough improvement in recent samples to risk it, though, and the result is this write-up. I can hear the question you’re asking already- is the gun up to where it should be? And the answer is….pretty much almost. Marlin Model 1895 Trapper Hits & Misses On the plus side, machining is tight, straight, well-fitted on steel-to-steel joins, and stock & fore-end [please leave as written] are well-mated to the receiver at both ends. Unlike early post-move samples, this Trapper has no sixteenth-inch gaps between wood and steel, filled with what appeared to be bubblegum; and there are no canted sights, mis-aligned magazine tubes, and off-kilter machined dovetails. The action was already smooth before the range session, and the trigger pull was a surprisingly clean and repeatable 5-pounds with no creep and no overtravel. The coated birch hardwood (which isn’t a negative, there’s just no reason to waste good walnut where the grain won’t be seen) has no checkering, but the finish is textured just enough for a non-slip hold in even wet conditions, and the black solid rubber Pachmayr Decelerator recoil pad has enough give to function well under heavy recoil. The gun fed and fired everything I put through it at the range without any hiccups, and the sights we’ve already gone over. On the non-plus side? Numerous edges that need….no, let’s be honest and say demand to be rounded off. The trigger drew blood on the first shot under recoil, and I do know how to shoot a thumper. There is absolutely no good reason whatever for this trigger to be that sharp, and along with the ice-scraper edges on the inside of the lever, combined with the sharp corners on the hammer and the sharp points on the rear sight dovetail plug, this is an otherwise great concept and configuration, but one you have watch in handling and shooting. Marlin Model 1895 Trapper On the Range I ended up doing most of the range work by shooting with my hand curled around outside the lever, and very carefully watching where I placed my trigger finger on every shot. Moreover, this is not the way a bear-shield should have to be approached. In a hurry, very easy to spear that trigger through a finger on successive shots while closing the action under stress; uncomfortable to say the least in working the lever with bare hands. This has been discussed with Marlin, who acknowledged the problem, told me they’ll be working on the sharps, and (to their credit) had no heartburn over me writing the Trapper up as I found it. I’d expect to see some improvement on at least the trigger and the lever edges. In the meantime, a good gunsmith could quickly address the lever and replace the sharp sight plug with a smooth rounded-edge one like I have on my Guide, but there may be some minor nuisance involving an after-buy trigger fix. Most of the Trapper’s major components feature stainless steel. However, the trigger is one of a few smaller parts utilizing nickel plating. When you grind or file down through plating in rounding corners and edges, you can begin a degradation process with the rest of the plating on that part. There are, fortunately, aftermarket triggers available if you need to look for them. The hammer is through and through stainless, so that’s easy to clean up yourself at home with a fine diamond file. Further, between hammer, trigger, and lever, those are your major interface with this levergun, and that interface should not cost you skin cells. RELATED STORY Now Available: The Marlin 1894C Lever-Action Rifle Boom! A 47-degree sunny day under calm wind conditions, off a concrete bench at 100 yards, with three jacketed 300-grainers and one jacketed 405-grainer, brought out another reminder that my eyes don’t do well with aperture sights nowdays. The Skinner sights are fine, the fault was just my well-worn eyes. The Marlin and I were still able to put three holes in under two inches now and then with a couple of the loads, and all four could hold three-shot groups under four inches. That’s tight enough for hunting at practical .45-70 lever-action distances, and perfectly fine for close encounters of the brushy kind. Recoil-wise, the Trapper lets you know when a high-performance premium load ignites, and there’s a shade more muzzle rise than a longer barrel usually generates, but it was all tolerable and all just part of the .45-70 game you sign up for when you adopt the caliber. Speaking of shade, even under the full overhead canopy of the state range I shot the Trapper at, I saw no signs of the short-barrel muzzle flash I was expecting from unburned powder through that 16.5-inch tube. Additionally, the rubber pad did its job well, the action gave me no bobbles, and most empty brass dropped neatly on the table next to the gun with normal lever effort. My back told me all the way home how grateful it was for that at the end of the day, without having to do the usual brass-pickup bend-overs. I could have tossed the empties further by running the lever harder, but the point is that it wasn’t necessary for reliable cycling, and that’s OK with me. Final Thoughts This new Trapper could find a place in my truck without much effort at all. Also, with just a little tweaking, it’d be one of the most interesting Marlins in their line-up for my tastes, and I’m glad to see the company coming back into serious running with the leverguns they built their reputation on. If you’ve held off checking them out because of all the sad tales of problematical quality, give ‘em another chance. Above all, it’s time. For more information, visit marlinfirearms.com. Marlin Model 1895 Trapper Specifications Caliber: .45-70 Overall Barrel Length: 16½ inches Overall Length: 34¾ inches Stock: Black birch Overall Weight: 7 pounds (empty) Sights: Blade front, Skinner peep rear Action: Lever Finish: Stainless Capacity: 5+1 MSRP: $1,123 This article is from the Winter 2019 issue of Guns of the Old West magazine. Grab your copy at OutdoorGroupStore.com The post Gun Test: The Fast-Handling Marlin Model 1895 Trapper in .45-70 appeared first on Tactical Life Gun Magazine: Gun News and Gun Reviews. View the full article
  10. Legacy Sports International recently announced the debut of its newest semi-automatic shotgun platform, the Pointer Phenoma. Moreover, the Pointer Phenoma line includes several different models in both 12, 20 and 28 gauge, along with .410 bore. Also, options includes several different finishes, including camo, Cerakote and more. RELATED STORY New From Legacy Sports: Citadel RS-S1 Semi-Auto AK Shotgun Pointer Phonema Features Pointer Phonema shotguns utilize 2 3/4-, 3- and 3 1/2-inch magnum chamberings. Additionally, 28-inch barrels are chome-moly lined and proofed for steel shot. The shotgun line also runs on a gas-operated cycling system. The shotgun also features a single-round magazine cut-off. Atop the barrel, a 3/8-inch dovetail accessory rail provides versatility in mounting options. Meanwhile, a fiber-optic front site helps keep shooters on target. With turkey season right around the corner, hunters will appreciate turkey models available in .410. Camouflage finishes include Realtree Max 5, Mossy Oak Bottomland and Mossy Oak Obsession patterns. Meanwhile, Legacy offers black synthetic and a Turkish Walnut variant for more traditional-minded shooters. Further, the company offers Cerakote options in both gray and bronze as well. In 12-gauge only, Legacy offers the Phonoma Camo, a laser-etched series featuring a camo stock and forend and Cerakote receiver and barrel with laser etching accents on the receiver that match the camo pattern. The company offers this variant in Realtree Max 5 and burnt bronze Cerakote or Realtree Original with midnight bronze Cerakote. All Pointer Phenoma shotguns include five different chokes, fiber-optic fronts sights and Duratouch finish and vent rib. Also, the choke system delivers compatibility with Beretta/Benelli Modil Style choke systems. For more information, visit legacysports.com. Legacy Sports Pointer Phenoma Specifications Gauge: 12, 20, 28, .410 Chamber: 2 3/4, 3, 3 1/2 inch Overall Barrel Length: 28 inches Overall Length: 48 inches Chokes: MC-5 Overall Weight: 5.9-7.2 pounds MSRP: Starting at $529 The post FIRST LOOK: Legacy Sports Pointer Phenoma Semi-Auto Shotgun appeared first on Tactical Life Gun Magazine: Gun News and Gun Reviews. View the full article
  11. A Shively Police officer shot a man recently following an extended chase through a Kentucky neighborhood outside Louisville. Moreover, the suspect brandished a loaded pistol after ignoring officer warnings. RELATED STORY WATCH: Officer Shot in Back by Friendly Fire After Dog Charges LE The chase began after officers responded to calls from several residents describing a suspicious man going in and out of yards throughout the neighborhood. After officers responded, the suspect, identified as 26-year-old Terry L. Sams, fled through neighborhood yards, and the chase was on, according to a story posted by wdrb.com. Officer body cam footage shows an officer, identified by wdrb.com as Steve Becker, an 11-year veteran, cutting through yards and hopping fences in pursuit. Further, footage shows Becker catch up to Sams, ordering the suspect to show his hands. But Sams responds with obscenities and allegedly pointed a gun at Becker. Then footage clearly shows Becker engage the suspect with several shots, putting the suspect down. “An officer never, never wants to fire his weapon,” said Shively Police Chief Kevin Higdon, according to wdrb.com. “He just wants to come in and do his job and go home. That’s what every officer who puts on the uniform wants to do.” Police recovered a loaded pistol on the ground next to Sams. Also, authorities transported Sams to University Hospital to treat wounds to the torso, hip and leg. Police also found drug paraphernalia on the ground near Sams, according to wdrb.com. Authorities said Sams’s condition had stabilized. The suspect faces charges of “first-degree wanton endangerment, fleeing or evading police, possession of a handgun by a convicted felon, criminal trespassing and possession of drug paraphernalia,” according to wdrb.com. The post WATCH: Shively Police Chase, Shoot Armed Suspect Outside Louisville appeared first on Tactical Life Gun Magazine: Gun News and Gun Reviews. View the full article
  12. Seattle Police shot and killed a murder suspect recently after the man wielded a knife. The Seattle Police officers responded to a domestic violence call. Officer body cam footage captured the entire scene unfold. RELATED STORY WATCH: Naperville Police Shoot Man Who Pointed Gun at Officers Officers forced open a third-floor apartment door where they observed a deceased woman inside. Also, officers identified two adults, a man and woman, and two small children, a boy and girl, hiding in another room, according to a Seattle Police Department report. Then police spotted a man armed with a large knife. Subsequently, two officers engaged the suspect, repeatedly ordering the suspect to drop the knife. During this time, officers also observed a grizzly scene, as police are heard saying “her head is cut off,” seemingly referring to the injuries suffered by the deceased woman. “Early this morning two of our officers responded to a very dangerous domestic violence incident. After forcefully entering the apartment, the officers were faced with a horrific and (grisly) homicide crime scene,” said a statement issued by the Seattle Police Officers Guild, as reported by seattletimes.com. Seattle Police Shoot Murder Suspect That scene turned even more deadly when the suspect picked the knife back up and postured toward the officers. After issuing several more verbal warnings, officers finally engaged the suspect, fatally striking him. All officers involved avoided injury. Seattle Fire responded and declared both the victim and the suspect dead on the scene, according to Seattle Police. During the incident, the family barricaded itself in an adjacent room. Finally, officers escorted the uninjured adults and children out of the apartment, according to Seattle Police. The investigation into the incident remains active and ongoing, according to Seattle Police. The post WATCH: Seattle Police Shoot, Kill Murder Suspect Who Pulls Knife appeared first on Tactical Life Gun Magazine: Gun News and Gun Reviews. View the full article
  13. Every year someone comes out with a new and improved caliber or cartridge. Most die on the vine. A few grow some legs, though none is genuinely new. Even fewer catch on, and the latest to do so is the .224 Valkyrie. Another take on the “fast .223,” it uses the same .224 bullets seen in 5.56mm or .223 Remington rifles. The Valkyrie sits between the .223 and the very fast .22-250, side-by-side with the .22 Nosler, which are two different takes on the same concept. RELATED STORY The POF Renegade Plus SPR 224 Valkyrie Gives New Power to the AR-15 The Rundown The original idea was to get close to .22-250 velocities in a lightweight AR or modern sporting rifle (MSR) using hunting bullets. They also push heavier bullets (80 to 90 grains) out to 2,700 or 2,800 fps for precision and competition shooters. Nosler’s .22 Nosler uses a case similar to the 6.8 Special Purpose Cartridge (SPC), with a rebated rim necked to .224. These cases have a .223 rim that expands out to the larger casing, allowing for a standard 5.56mm bolt. Federal’s .224 Valkyrie starts with a 6.8 SPC case, leaving the rim as is and requiring a 6.8 bolt. Both use 6.8 SPC magazines. While the end result is similar, they go about getting there differently. Looking at most early comparisons, they seemed to be conducted using ballistic programs, not real data. Ballistic programs are only accurate when applied and confirmed in the real world. Entering a muzzle velocity yields a “predicted” hold at 1,300 yards, not a real one. You need to put lead to steel, then enter real data into your ballistic calculator. This presumes you have steel at that range, and can hit it, but once you’re done you have verifiable and largely predictable data. Valid comparisons remove certain factors. Can you remove them all? No, but you can remove most, so I did. I used factory-loaded ammunition, factory barrels and available parts. Shooting would occur on the same range, on the same day(s), with the same weather conditions, targets, position, scope and so on. In this test only the barrel and bolt were changed. Test Platform My Zev Technologies build was the base, and their billet MML upper receiver fully supports the barrel and has produced precision rifle accuracy in .223, 6.8 SPC and 6.5 Grendel. The bolt carrier group is Aero Precision, and the trigger is a Timney Targa two-stage using a flat shoe. The gun has a Primary Weapons EBT buffer tube, and the stock is an LMT sniper. I have a Primary Weapons H2 buffer and Sprinco Red spring. Bushnell’s latest Elite Tactical PRO DMR scope with a G3 reticle was mounted in a ZRODelta cantilever mount. NG2 Defense’s MAXFLO 3D suppressor kept things quiet, and its flow-through design leaves the brass clean and undisturbed. Wilson Combat AR barrels offer an incredible buy. Most are under $350, drop in and have proved incredibly accurate. Tested in a half dozen calibers, all shoot under an inch at 100 yards, most half that. Both were 20 inches long, medium contour, fluted (recon), with improved feed ramps. An SLR adjustable gas block was installed on the 0.750 gas journal. The .22 Nosler barrel is 1-in-8-inch twist, the norm for this caliber. Valkyrie barrels are mostly 1-in-7-inch twist. Bill Wilson’s testing found 1-in-6.5-inch to work best. 224 Valkyrie Round Nosler and Federal ammunition was used: 85-grain RDF Nosler, and 90-grain SMK from Federal. Other bullet weights were tested, though most of the data comes from these two. Both companies advertise flat trajectories, similar to some 6.5s out to 1,300 yards, so that was my limit. An Applied Ballistics‒equipped Kestrel trued each at 1,000 yards. This was then confirmed at 1,308 yards. Distances are well established, since I shoot them several days a week. Everything was fired standing behind a bench using an Atlas Bipod and a rear bag for support. Elevation was dialed and wind held using the G3 reticle. Shooting occurred over three long days starting at dawn each day, ending at dusk on one. Conditions were 93 to 95 degrees, with 10 to 15 percent humidity and winds in the 10 to 15 mph range. Average density altitude (DA) was 8,500 feet. Results Both rounds proved to be accurate, producing five-round groups in the 0.60-inch range at 100 yards. Nosler’s 70-grain RDF had the tightest and most consistent group at 100 yards. The 300-yard groups were in the 1.70-inch range using match ammunition. Nosler’s 85-grain RDF produced the best at 1.58 inches. Cold shots were consistent, several cutting the center out of the 0.5-inch dot. Bottom line: Both barrels were equally accurate, holding under 1-MOA at 100 and 300 yards. Federal’s Gold Medal 90-grain SMK (.224V) trued at 2,700 fps, matching listed velocity. Nosler’s 85-grain RDF (.22N) trued higher at 2,800 fps, about 100 fps faster. The 70-grain RDF trued to 3,025 fps, and the listed velocity was 3,000 fps. Overall they were close to listed velocities, and at 1,308 yards there was little practical difference. Barrels were swapped in the field using my hitch vise and Geissele Reaction Rod, then confirmed using their 1,000-yard holds. The Valkyrie 90-grain SMK held 8.4 mils; wind hold was 1.25 mils. Seven out of 10 rounds impacted the 16-inches-wide by 22-inches-tall target roughly centered. Misses held the same elevation. Applied Ballistics listed hold was 13.7 mils, and was confirmed with three of five hits holding 1.75 to 2.00 mils for wind. Holds & BCs Nosler’s 85-grain held true at 8.2 mils. This does not seem like much, but at 1,000 yards that can mean a miss. While its ballistic coefficient (BC) is lower (0.245 vs. 0.274) than the SMK’s, it is making another 100 fps, which also makes a difference. Wind holds were the same, 1.25 to 1.35 mills as it shifted. Hold at 1,308 was listed as 13.5 mils and confirmed on steel holding the same 1.75 to 2.00 mils of wind. Interestingly, the 70-grain RDF confirmed at 8.2 mils at 1,000 yards, same as the 85-grain RDF, but increased to 14.5 at 1,308 yards. Its much lower BC (0.197 vs. 0.245) gave way to the 85-grain as range increased, in spite of its increased velocity. Comparing the heavier bullets from each manufacturer, the difference is minimal, well within errors made by the shooter or shifting conditions. Although this is verifiable, I am not sure most people would notice the difference. Running either caliber for a Precision Rifle Series (PRS) match or similar will yield the same results. Both RDF loads were consistently flatter out to 800 yards. Sierra’s 90-grain SMK held 6.0 mils, the 85-grain RDF 5.7, the 70-grain 5.4, which was pretty significant on paper, marginally so as a practical matter. The .22 Nosler is nonetheless flatter out to 800 yards. 224 Valkyrie Varmint Rounds Both Nosler and Federal advertise their offerings as the ultimate .223 varmint hunting rounds with loads to match. Given that my 53-grain VMAX handload makes 3,200 fps from a 16-inch barrel and has been used to great effect on varmints, I am not sure that’s really true. Opinions differ considerably on this subject. There is no doubt that both are faster than most factory ammunition from a .223, but whether that results in a practical difference will be argued ad nauseam. Nosler’s 55-grain E-tip and Federal’s 60-grain Nosler Ballistic Tip made about 3,330 fps from these barrels. Nosler’s 62-grain Varmageddon measured 3,110 fps. Moving to a 24-inch barrel would increase these, as would handloads, possibly practical for prairie dogs or similar, but most of that crowd sees anything under 4,000 fps as slow, and I am just not sure that is either safe or possible with these calibers. RELATED STORY Seekins Joins 224 Valkyrie Party by Introducing VKR18, VKR20 Rifles 224 Valkyrie Round Considerations Both the 70-grain RDF and 90-grain SMK ran using the H2 buffer and increased power spring without issue, with consistent brass ejection and very little felt recoil. Moving to the 85-grain RDF required a small adjustment at the gas block. Most lighter and much faster loads required the gas to be turned down a bit to keep it smooth. If you are going to run lots of different ammunition, use an adjustable gas block. Felt recoil was subjective, but it seemed the Valkyrie was “softer” with a somewhat slower bolt cycling time. Shooting rifles almost daily over years provides me a feel most people may not even notice, but to me it’s there. The Valkyrie is a bit softer in general. My initial thought was the 1-in-8-inch twist barrel may provide an issue for the 85-grain RDF, but nope, it ran like a champ and was very accurate. Granted, the 70-grain RDF was a tad more accurate and flatter than all the precision bullets, but the 85-grain RDF worked just fine with the faster twist. Having tested a 1-in-7-inch twist Wilson Combat .224 Valkyrie barrel, I was unable to discern any real difference. Both grouped well at 100 and 300 yards, and holds were the same at 1,308 yards. I am sure there is a difference, maybe over a broad spectrum, but either way the Wilson Combat barrels were excellent in this caliber. Handloading 224 Valkyrie Rounds Handloading changes the game here, since you can speed these up quite a bit, but with the AR platform it won’t be a done deal. I will be loading the Nosler 70- and 85-grain RDF for the Valkyrie for another project, and it will be interesting to see what, if any, difference there is. Bolt guns are starting to crop up as well, making handloading even more promising for either. Removing the cycling issue is huge. I’m still not sure how big a game changer it is, but it does add another component to the equation. Final Notes For most people, which one to choose is really going to be about personal preference. Outside support for the Valkyrie is better. Ammunition choice is about the same now, but the Valkyrie seems to be gathering steam. There are multitudes of differences in the minutiae. I have heard them far too often, from the case dimensions to the bolt faces. Most of us get lost about 2.5 seconds in and fall asleep. From a shooter’s perspective they remain pretty similar. If you are a big 6.8 SPC shooter, the Valkyrie is a barrel swap. It’s the same thing for those using 5.56mm with the .22 Nosler. Shorter barrels and lighter bullets seem to favor the .22 Nosler, so those wanting an 18-inch barrel may be better served. Having compared the Valkyrie and a 6.5 Creedmoor out to 800 yards, I’d say it is a solid competitor for PRS gas gun matches. As with many of these things, much will boil down to personal preference, and both will get the job done quite nicely, regardless of which one you choose. For more information, visit federalpremium.com and nosler.com. This article is from the 2019 Modern Gun issue of Tactical-Life magazine. Grab your copy at OutdoorGroupStore.com. For digital editions, visit Amazon. The post Is the .224 Valkyrie Round Just Another Fast and Furious .223? appeared first on Tactical Life Gun Magazine: Gun News and Gun Reviews. View the full article
  14. Officers from the Lufkin Police Department in Texas rescued a tiny kitten recently. Moreover, the Lufkin Police officers showed a bit of ingenuity, employing a blanket to safely catch the feline as it dropped from a tree branch. Also, body cam footage captured the entire rescue mission. RELATED STORY WATCH: Oregon Officer Shoots, Kills Dad Who Pulled Gun at School Lufkin Police Responds According to a post on the Lufkin Police Department Facebook page, Officers Devin Trotti and Randy Stallard arrived on scene to find a kitten stuck 30-feet up in a tree. Prior to arrival, another kitten, presumably a sibling, had already fallen to its death. So the officers sprang into action. The post goes on to say the rescue mission lasted 10 minutes. Also, in true MacGyver fashion, officers used crime scene tape and a blanket during the rescue. Footage shows the officers work in tandem to position a blanket beneath the kitten. Meanwhile, one officer shakes the branch, forcing the cat to drop free. Above all, the kitten lands safely into the soft confines of the field expedient blanket. Officers named the kitten “Trotti” and transported the cat to the local Kurth Memorial Animal Shelter. The shelter immediately offered the kitten up for adoption, according to Lufkin Police. A follow-up post on the Lufkin Police Facebook page stated: “CAT RESCUE UPDATE: We’re happy to report that ‘Trotti’ has been adopted! Thank you guys for helping us get the word out to find her a loving home. #trottisstillagirl #andtheyalllivedhappilyeverafter.” The Lufkin Police clearly had some fun with this one, as they should. While headlines concerning law enforcement are often full of gloom and doom, the kitten rescue in Texas stands as a cheerful reminder that officers are out there trying to help in any way they can. Showing a bit of care and concern for a kitten, which ultimately led to it finding a home, helps us view cops through a different lens, a positive example of law enforcement serving their community. The post WATCH: Lufkin Police Use Blanket to Save Kitten Falling From Tree appeared first on Tactical Life Gun Magazine: Gun News and Gun Reviews. View the full article
  15. On Wednesday, January 23, Naperville Police shot and apprehended a man who pointed his gun at a responding officer. The suspect remains alive and in stable condition. Department dash cam footage shows the incident unfold entirely as officers respond to a tough situation in Illinois. RELATED STORY Watch: Suspect Pulls Gun on Lakemoor Police Officer, Gets Shot in Head Naperville Police Respond The scene began when Naperville Police responded to a commercial strip mall in the town approximately 30 miles west of Chicago. There, a 27-year-old drew attention for suspicious activity. Moreover, when officers arrived on the scene, the man held a gun to his head in the parking lot. Footage clearly shows a man holding a gun to his head as officers first arrive on the scene. Footage also makes it clear that officers attempted repeatedly to get the man to drop the weapon. Multiple voices shout “Drop the gun, drop the gun,” and “talk to me.” However the suspect failed to comply to any of the officers’ requests. Instead, after a few minutes of standoff, the man abruptly takes the handgun away from his head, advancing and aiming at an officer. That’s when law enforcement finally responded, as at least one officer engaged the suspect and put him down. Naperville Police Officers then advanced on the suspect, detained him and recovered the firearm. Additionally, once secure, officials transported the suspect to an area hospital for treatment. All Naperville Police personnel involved in the incident avoided injury. Moreover, the DuPage Major Crimes Task Force and State’s Attorney’s office are conducting an investigation into the incident, according to a release by the Naperville Police Department. Naperville, Illinois is a town of approximately 145,000 people in the suburbs of Chicago. The city boats an exceptionally low crime rate and consistently ranks as a top city to live, according to the Naperville Police Department. The post WATCH: Naperville Police Shoot Man Who Pointed Gun at Officers appeared first on Tactical Life Gun Magazine: Gun News and Gun Reviews. View the full article

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