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9 3555

Keeping your knives sharp makes them both safer and more effective. Unfortunately, it doesn’t take long for a knife to lose its edge. Plus, it can be difficult to get a knife back to the razor sharpness it had when it left the assembly line.

To make matters worse, it’s quite easy to do more harm to a blade than good if you don’t know how to sharpen it correctly.

The next time you go to sharpen any of your knives, stop and ask yourself if you’re making any of these edge-killing mistakes.

Relying on Jigs
From Jeff Peachey:

Not relying on jigs will give you much more freedom, and speed, in sharpening a variety of tools. Many bookbinding knives do not fit it standard jigs, which are often designed for woodworking tools. The hand motions and muscle memory necessary to sharpen freehand is often very similar to the skills necessary to use the knife properly. Throw away your crutches and walk!

Going Too Long In-Between Sharpenings
From Edge Experts:
Waiting until a knife is too dull makes it a lot harder to get the knife sharp without an aggressive sharpener like an electric. It is far better to use to a quick touch up on a manual sharpener each time you use your knife to keep it sharp. To re-sharpen a very dull edge requires you to remove a significant amount of material.

Applying Too Much Pressure
From Lanskey Sharpeners:
The number one issue I see with people trying to learn how to sharpen is using too much force. Just the weight of your hands is enough, with the proper skill, to get a blade sharp. If you’re putting too much muscle into sharpening and not receiving ideal results then I bet that’s your culprit.

What Else Should You Look Out For?
Do you know of any other common sharpening mistakes? Tell us about them in the comments.

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28 6381

It’s a cinch to carry without printing in the winter months. All the heavy clothing makes it simple to keep your firearm out of the prying eyes of others. Doing the same during the summer months, on the other hand, is a totally different matter.

When it’s 80 degrees plus outside, there aren’t many easy options to cover up your firearm. Therefore, it becomes much easier to accidentally expose your firearm to public observers and passersby.

Here are five simple tips to make sure your concealed weapon stays your business, and your business only.

1. Choose the Smallest Acceptable Firearm
From The Well Armed Woman:
Although not the ideal solution, as we don’t want to give up firepower if we don’t have to, carrying a smaller gun in the summer months is an option and is better than not carrying any gun at all. If you can afford a second gun, the very small and compact semi-automatics and lightweight revolvers are very easy to hide. Some are now so slim that they don’t create a bulge, (and who needs more of those?) You may want to research the available holsters for these models prior to purchasing to make sure the type of holster you want to wear is available for it. Keep in mind that smaller, lighter guns will have quite a bit more recoil to contend with. They simply don’t have the weight and size necessary to absorb the energy.

2. Try an Inside the Waistband (IWB) Holster
From American Concealed:
Inside the Waistband (IWB) holsters are a less revealing option and fit nicely under a t-shirt and pants. These give the handgun a low profile, rather than allowing the gun to bulge out along the waistline. Choose a smaller, more compact weapon because a larger model may dig into your torso or leg.

3. Utilize Deep Concealment
From Second Call Defense:
Your choices for deep concealment seem almost endless these days, including belly bands, appendix carry pouches, and bra holsters. Some of these methods require you to get past clothing used as cover, which makes drawing more difficult. But assuming you practice and feel comfortable that you can draw effectively in a high-stress situation, these are all additional options to consider.

Whether you change your method of carry for one day or the entire season, remember the importance of becoming familiar with your method of carry. Practice with an unloaded firearm and work out all the kinks in your draw stroke. It has to become second nature.

In a life-or-death situation, you won’t have time to think. You’ll have about 1.5 seconds and will have to depend on muscle memory to deploy your weapon properly.

A smaller firearm, for example, has a smaller grip and a shorter distance between the front and rear sight, making it more difficult to score accurate hits. Dry fire practice is essential. Remember, all it takes is a little time and effort to build muscle memory with your secondary firearm or alternate method of carry. You’re not starting from scratch. You’re simply building on your existing skills to create a new skill set with different equipment.Your choices for deep concealment seem almost endless these days, including belly bands, appendix carry pouches, and bra holsters. Some of these methods require you to get past clothing used as cover, which makes drawing more difficult. But assuming you practice and feel comfortable that you can draw effectively in a high-stress situation, these are all additional options to consider.

Whether you change your method of carry for one day or the entire season, remember the importance of becoming familiar with your method of carry. Practice with an unloaded firearm and work out all the kinks in your draw stroke. It has to become second nature.

In a life-or-death situation, you won’t have time to think. You’ll have about 1.5 seconds and will have to depend on muscle memory to deploy your weapon properly.

A smaller firearm, for example, has a smaller grip and a shorter distance between the front and rear sight, making it more difficult to score accurate hits. Dry fire practice is essential. Remember, all it takes is a little time and effort to build muscle memory with your secondary firearm or alternate method of carry. You’re not starting from scratch. You’re simply building on your existing skills to create a new skill set with different equipment.

How Do You Carry In Hot Weather?
Do you have any good tips for keeping your concealed weapon concealed when the mercury starts to climb? Drop your advice in the comments!

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15 4520

At the risk of stating the obvious, accuracy is crucial any time you discharge a firearm. Whether you’re going after wild game or protecting yourself in a defense situation, being able to land a round right where you want it is an invaluable skill.

Target practice can get expensive though. All that ammo adds up. Even after just a short session of target shooting, it’s easy to start feeling like you’re just burning up money.

So what’s the solution? Enter the high powered air pistol.

This isn’t your grandpa’s BB gun we’re talking about. These bad boys pack some serious punch – some models shoot at over 1200fps!

And the best part is that pellets are cheap and bountiful. You can plunk away for hours without spending more than $10, and that means you can spend as much time as you need honing your accuracy.

Here are a few of the absolute best air pistols for target practice.

Hatsan AT-P1 QE PCP Pistol
From Personal Defense World:
Hatsan’s new AT-P1 provides shooters with a hard-hitting and affordable alternative for honing their shooting skills, as pellets are both inexpensive and readily available.

The AT-P1 is designed to shoot heavier pellets than airguns manufacturers that test their products using alloy aluminum pellets, it will provide shooters will greater accuracy and more energy upon impact when using high-density pellets. The AT-P1’s pre-charged pneumatic (PCP) power system uses a 50cc air cylinder with 200 bar fill (3000PSI) to propel high-density lead pellets to velocities as high as 870fps.

The AT-P1 features components that are nearly all made in-house by the Turkish manufacturer like all airguns from Hatsan. This includes the airgun’s precision rifled barrel made from high-quality German steel and its fully adjustable 2-stage Quattro Trigger.

Beretta PX4 Storm BB & Pellet Pistol
From Replica Air Guns:

The Umarex Beretta PX4 Storm is a very unique pellet blowback air pistol and there are very few airguns that sport all the same features. Not only is it a very close replica of the original Beretta PX4 Storm but it’s also a blowback pellet shooter with decent FPS velocity. The Umarex PX4 Storm has decent accuracy and you can expect about 60 good shots out of a CO2 cartridge. At well under $100, this replica airgun is a great value and a nice addition to any airgun enthusiasts collection.

Benjamin Marauder Pellet Pistol
From Shooting and Safety:

The Benjamin Marauder PCP Air Pistol is an amazing Pre-charged pneumatic survival pistol. It actually feels like a professional weapon disguised as an air pistol. And with its adjustable triggers, it provides much flexibility while shooting. It provides the comfort of various shots within one powerful firearm. While the main focus of this specific Benjamin Marauder PCP Air Pistol review was initially intended to zone-in on the power if offers, it has emerged as one of the best rifles around, particularly one that can utilize the full power and accuracy of .22 PBA platinum caliber pellets.

Got Suggestions?
Do you have any suggestions for air pistols that are good for target practice? Give us your tips in the comments!

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6 6014

Half the fun of building up an AR-15 is tweaking it once you’re done. That’s part of the beauty of the rifle. It has so many interchangeable parts, and you can constantly be improving its reliability, comfort, and performance.

Take a look at these easy and inexpensive upgrades for your AR-15. Even with not a lot of money or know-how, you can still squeeze extra value out of your AR-15 without too much hassle.

1. Protective Coating

The fine folks at Offthegridnews.com tell us why protective coatings are a no-brainer:

“This is, perhaps, one of the most obvious ways to protect the longevity of your AR-15, especially if you’re stuck in an environment that will put your baby through constant moisture and friction hardships. Giving your AR a sturdy application of Duracoat or Cerakote will offer two advantages to your rifle system:

  • First, you’ll be able to better shelter your AR from the corrosion-causing elements, and give it just another barrier of protection.
  • Second, (provided you’ve selected a color scheme that makes sense) the coating can provide an additional camouflage factor, which can give you just one more tactical advantage.

Of course, especially with aftermarket AR mods, such things will cost a pretty penny. If you do DIY, then you won’t have to pay upwards of $200-$300 to have someone else do it — but do be careful, because this is one job that’s very easy to botch.”

2. Upgraded Grip

Guns & Ammo explains why the simple act of slapping a new grip on your AR-15 can make such a huge difference:

“Nothing makes an AR-15 feel more impersonal and uncomfortable than a standard A2 pistol grip. Common complaints with the A2 grip include its hard plastic knot bumping their middle finger, and its thin profile that fails to accommodate larger hands.Those who operate their rifles for an extended period of time will notice a comfortable improvement when replacing their pistol grips. Popular grips include offerings from Bravo Company, Ergo Grips, Hogue, Magpul and TangoDown.”

3. New Trigger

Lots of AR-15 owners overlook it, but the trigger can be a very high-leverage upgrade, according to The Truth About Guns:

“There’s a depressing trend in AR-15 builds these days where manufacturers use top-shelf, state-of-the-art parts to build most of the gun, and then completely cheap out on the trigger. Just about every AR-15 I’ve tested in the last couple months suffers from this malady, namely using a “mil-spec” trigger that probably costs about $10 to finish off a $1,000+ rifle.

With a modern sporting rifle, there are definitely some parts you can skimp on and get away with it. A better bolt carrier is nice, but won’t really make that much of a difference. A better stock is appreciated, but the “mil-spec” crap that gets mass produced gets the job done just fine. One place where scrimping really hurts performance, though, is the trigger. The reason is that while a substandard bolt carrier or stock might not impact accuracy much at all, a better trigger can cut group sizes in half all by itself — something my one-time roommate Tom McHale proved once more in his article yesterday on this same subject.

Trigger control is critical to making a good shot. An inconsistent or excessively stacking trigger will lead to inconsistent shot placement, but a consistent, clean trigger will allow the shooter to make that precisely aimed shot much easier. A new trigger won’t instantly make every rifle and rifleman into a Carlos Hathcock clone — only training and practice can do that. But the difference between a stock trigger and a match grade trigger will be like night and day, no matter the skill level.”

4. Anti-Rotational Pins

From Wing Tactical:

“Many shooters have unfortunately dealt with the damage that results from trigger and hammer pins that have come loose, resulting in detrimental wear and tear around the holes on their rifles. This results in the pins walking out from time to time, particularly during the rapid fire of your rifle.

Thankfully, it’s incredibly easy to make sure that you don’t suffer the same tragic fate as your fellow gunners. By investing a few bucks in anti-rotational pins, you’re able to upgrade your AR-15 while ensuring it remains powerful and accurate for a long time to come.

One of the easiest AR-15 upgrades, anti-rotational pins make sure that trigger and hammer pins are bolted in place. When fully fastened, these pins won’t move even the slightest, resulting in more control over the rounds you fire.”

5. New Stock

From Maxblagg.net:

“Choosing the right stock is vital for both comfort and reliability. Stocks come in two kinds: fixed and collapsible. While fixed stocks generally offer more in the way of accuracy and consistency, upgrades made to collapsible stocks make them a viable choice for their functionality, while also maintaining integrity when it comes to accuracy and consistency.

When choosing a stock, be sure to choose a replacement that fits your buffer tube. Also, be sure to take into consideration how heavy your barrel, upper receiver, and any other attachments you have mounted to the front of your gun are. If your weapon tends to be front heavy, be sure to get a stock that will help balance out the overall weight of the gun, while still allowing it to be as maneuverable and functional as possible. Be sure to check out the Tapco AR-15 T6 Collapsible Stock and the Command Arms AR-15/M16 Sniper Stock.”

Do you know of any other easy, inexpensive AR-15 upgrades everyone should know about? Give us your thoughts in the comments.

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15 5291

As gun control laws keep ratcheting down access to firearms and violence seems to get worse by the day, more people than ever are taking steps to protect themselves by acquiring concealed carry permits and buying their first gun. However, now members of the gun community are often shocked to see just how expensive their new undertaking can become. They just want an accurate, well-built pistol to keep on their person that will keep them protected when it matters most.

Those are the people who this article is for. If you’re looking for a solid first gun to put to use with your new concealed carry permit, and if you don’t want to break the bank, these pistols are for you.

1. Sig Sauer P250

From Offthegridnews.com:

“That is not a misprint. Sig Sauer offers a handgun for less than $500 that is extremely advanced for the price point. The P250 is a double-action-only style pistol with a modular system that allows the shooter to change to different calibers, barrel lengths, grip sizes, etc.

It may not be the US Navy SEAL’s pistol of choice, but is built in the same factory by the same skilled workers who make those very pistols.

The P250 can be had in 9mm, 357 SIG, 40 S&W, 45 ACP and 380 ACP. For less than $500 including tax, a new owner can walk out the door of his favorite gun shop with a Sig pistol, including a holster and two magazines.”

2. Ruger LC9

Excerpt from the Daily Caller’s full review:

“The Ruger LC9 is thin, lightweight and therefore easily concealed. It carries comfortably in a Versacarry or Galco Stow-N-Go holster (both are inside the waistband) without gouging my side or feeling out of balance. Yes, I wore a gun belt and yes that helped. It always does, even with smaller and lighter guns. Although you can put a shortened magazine baseplate on it, it doesn’t do all that well in a front pocket.

The Ruger LC9 is enough gun. With 7+1 rounds of 9mm on board, I’m carrying more than a typical revolver and more than enough for a civilian defensive situation.”

3. Bersa Thunder Pro Ultra Compact 9mm

Clair Rees ended his review on this gun in Personal Defense World very favorably:

“To sum up, I call the 9mm Bersa Thunder Pro Ultra Compact one heck of a bargain. It’s one of the most reliable pistols I’ve tested right out of the box. It’s easy to shoot and delivers great accuracy. As another plus, it’s definitely priced right.”

4. Stoeger Cougar

Rob Tuck at USA Carry had lots of good things to say about this gun in his review:

“Stoeger has done a great job of maintaining the legacy of this gun. It’s solid, reliable, well-built and well designed. I’m really impressed with the reliability of this gun right out of the box. There was no “break-in” period, and not a single malfunction. This definitely meets my criteria for a home defense gun, and even though it’s a little heavy, I think it would make a really good CC/EDC gun. Best of all, it’s priced well. Stoeger’s MSRP is $469 for this gun. Not bad at all considering the lineage of the gun. Do yourself a favor and go check this out at your local dealer and see if this gun is for you.”

5. Smith & Wesson SD9VE

A comprehensive review at Sensible Survival gave this guy very high marks:

“My personal impression of the SD9VE is that it appears to be a good solid, reliable firearm. The price is very reasonable. Both my wife and I fired several magazines through it. The trigger pull did not fell too stiff to either one of us, and every round fed without problem. Magazines transitions were smooth and easy, and accuracy was good. Of course, this firearm is not nearly as rugged as my all metal PT-92, but we are not anticipating prolonged field carry or huge volumes of fire. This firearm is plenty rugged enough and plenty reliable enough for civilian defense purposes. It is a great gun for the money, indeed it is the easy equivalent of guns that cost much more. I would recommend it to anyone.”

Do you have any opinions about good first guns for new concealed carriers? Tell us about them in the comments!

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7 3711

Carrying a concealed weapon is no doubt the best way to keep yourself safe as you carry out your day-to-day activities. In a dangerous confrontation, there’s no better way to make sure you come out on the other side alive.

Concealed carry isn’t without challenges though. Like anything, it takes practice to perfect, and many people are prone to making mistakes. As you know, there’s no room for error when you’re dealing with matters of life and death, and that’s why you owe it to yourself to make sure you do everything in your power to carry and discharge your firearm safely, accurately, and effectively.

Having said that, take a look at these common concealed carry missteps, and ask yourself if you’re guilty of them. If you are, start working to correct them immediately.

1. Touching and Checking Your Gun Too Much

What’s the point of concealing your firearm if you’re going to constantly touch it, adjust it, and make its presence obvious to everyone around you?

Dieter Heren on Survivaltacticalsystems.com elaborates:

“This is a bad habit often seen by those just starting to carry concealed. As they go about their routine, they’ll casually reach back and touch the gun with their fingers or sometimes blatantly just check to see if it’s still there. Don’t worry, if you’ve gotten a proper holster it’s still there. If you catch yourself doing this when you carry, suppress the urges and leave it alone! All you’re doing is giving people another chance to see that you have a gun on you. With a bit of experience and self control this urge will go away.”

2. Falling Out of Practice

The only way to guarantee that you’ll be able to discharge your weapon effectively when it matters most is to practice shooting regularly. Familiarity with your gun is crucial, and repetition of the fundamentals ensures you respond correctly in a crisis.

Ben Findley at Usacarry.com explains:
“Shooting fundamentals and skills are perishable and they deteriorate if not practiced. So, you must practice on a regular basis. Although dry-fire practice drills are useful, there is no substitute for live fire. You can run dry practice drills to practice presenting your handgun, aligning your sights, getting your firearm on target, exercising your trigger press and reset, and performing emergency reloads, tactical reloads, and malfunction clearances. However, dry-fire practice does not give you the experience of controlling your trigger and your firearm under recoil. If you cannot devote some time on a regular basis to shooting practice, your shooting skills and performance under the stress of a deadly-force encounter will suffer. Unfortunately, our deadly-force encounter shooting skills do not increase under the stress of pumping adrenaline. Our shooting skills and accuracy during a real-life encounter do not come close to our worse day of accurate shooting at the Range, but actually decrease. Your body is going to dump massive amounts of adrenaline into your bloodstream which will make you temporarily stronger and faster, but it adversely affects fine motor coordination such as your ability to focus on the front sight and press the trigger without disrupting the sight alignment. As a result, you will tend to be about half as good in a real encounter as you are on your best Range day. Regular practice definitely helps. Aim for a monthly Range shooting session, but try to go at least every 7 to 8 weeks at minimum. Certainly not once a year.”

3. Feeling Invincible

While training yourself and carrying your firearm regularly may significantly reduce your chances of harm, it can never eliminate them completely. It’s important to remember that you can still incur harm in a confrontation, and your gun isn’t a fix-all solution to potential violence.

Christina Vandivier at Wideopenspaces.com puts it perfectly:
“Carrying a concealed handgun is a huge responsibility and should not be taken lightly. Just because you now have a gun on your person does not mean that you have automatically eliminated any and all threats. You would avoid trouble if you were not armed and should avoid trouble even more so when you are.”

4. Carrying Too Many Different Guns

It takes time to master and hone your skills on each different type of gun. It’s not as if your skill will magically transfer perfectly to every gun you pick up. Each gun is different, and you can’t expect to be as quick, comfortable, or accurate if you’re carrying different guns every day.

Austin Davis at Kangaroo Carry explains why:
“Variety is the spice of life but is a recipe for disaster with firearms. There is only so much time and mental energy to train, so if you have to try to learn multiple operating ?systems/point of aim/point of impact on multiple handguns you will not have the maximum amount of muscle memory specific skill sets mastered to operate your handgun most effectively if at all under stress. If you need more than one dedicated carry firearm could you at least try to at least stay in the same gun family? If you prefer a certain type of firearm, get the other carry guns in the same configuration, operating system, and grip angle but perhaps in different sizes. For example, if you like an external safety make sure all your carry guns have a safety in same place that works in same direction. We lose the ability to think creatively under stress and will fall back on our lowest level of training. So same system/same way can save the day when time is life.”

5. Using a Cheap or Uncomfortable Holster

Your holster is a foundational part of your concealed carry setup. It allows you to access your gun quickly and safely, and it keeps it stored on your person comfortably. You shouldn’t be afraid to try lots of holsters and invest in a nice one when you find it.

Dan Zimmerman at The Truth About Guns tells us more:
“A holster that constantly chafes or needs adjustment isn’t only annoying, it can be dangerous. You’re much less likely to carry consistently if you know you’ll be uncomfortable doing so, and regular carry is a key to effective protection.

What’s more, people are more prone to adjust holsters that hurt them. Fiddling with your rig means handling your gun more often which can lead to an accidental discharge and drawing attention to your weapon. Both of which could ruin your day.

Carrying a firearm is never about intimidation factor or the prestige of owning expensive items. It’s about being being prepared to protect yourself and others in the event of a deadly threat. In a situation like that, there’s no room for error.”

Do you know of any other common concealed carry mistakes? Share this post with your thoughts or leave them in the comments.

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0 2011

Carrying a firearm on your person is an important step to stay protected as you walk the streets, but sometimes the best course of action is to disarm your attacker, rather than initiate a dangerous firefight. Additionally, you may at some point encounter a situation where you’re caught unarmed, putting you in a position where you must take a gun or other weapon from your attacker.

No matter what the case may be, you should know these vital techniques for disarming attackers. They just might save your life.

1. Using Krav Maga to Neutralize a Gunman Behind You

This technique will require training, but it’s priceless once you’ve mastered it.

2. Use This Centuries Old Knife Disarming Tactic

Some believe that knifes are inherently less of a threat than guns. However, a knife can inflict fatal damage in an instant and should never be underestimated. This technique is ancient, and it’s still viable today.

3. Learn The Fastest Way to Disarm a Gunman Head-On

This basic technique is simple but effective.

Take the time to practice and master these three techniques. You may need to find a partner to drill with, but repetition in situations that resemble real life as closely as possible with ensure you know how to quickly disarm an attacker when time is limited.

Do you know any good techniques like these? Tell us in the comments.

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10 5452

Many AR-15 owners find that the first upgrade they want to make to their rifle is a nice red dot sight. It’s a natural step up from a classic iron sight, because it provides a nice bump in accuracy and range without breaking the bank.

As a result, these sweet little red dot sights are extremely popular. Here are three great options if you’re looking to make the upgrade from a standard iron sight.

Bushnell Trophy TRS-25 Red Dot Sight

From Reddotsights.us:

bushnell_trs25_mainThe optics company Bushnell should be familiar to any hunters out there. They are one of the best known optics manufacturers out there. Their Trophy TRS-25 Red Dot Sight is a great sight at an inexpensive price point.

At less than $100 it’s worth the advantages it gives you over traditional iron sights. This sight is a tube design that weights in a 3.7 oz at a length of 2.4 inches, a slim design that won’t take up too much room on the rail.

The TRS-25 has a 25mm objective lens that is coated in Bushnell’s patented Amber-Bright coating, providing high contrast between the FOV and the reticle. The reticle itself is a 3 MOA red dot which is a great size for close-to-mid range shots, good for target acquisition and speed.

See more here.

Vortex Sparc 2-MOA

Details from Shootingandsafety.com:

2016-02-05_08-56-53
Sitting pretty towards the top of the budget price-range for red dot sights, the Vortex Optics SPARC II Red Dot (SPC-402) is a sight you’d be considering if you’re serious about your target-shooting or hunting exploits. In fact, for a sight that resides in this price bracket, you might even be surprised at just how close this sight comes to military-grade precision in its application.A longitudinal view of the Vortex Optics Sparc II might leave you wondering where the power and MOA adjustment buttons are, which are quite cleverly located facing backwards. In-use adjustment in this fashion might take some getting used to (you’ll be using your thumb more), but only if you’re used to sights with dials on the side of the device’s body.

See the full review here.

Airpoint ACO

From Bluesheepdog.com:

The Aimpoint Carine Optic (ACO) provides MSR shooters a quality optic at a decent price.

Aimpoint aims to add to its market share of red dot sights with the addition of their new Carbine Optic. The Carbine Optic is specifically designed for the Modern Sporting Rifle (MSR), and introduces a quality red dot sight to compete in the mid-level price range.

The Aimpoint Carbine Optic combines the proven Aimpoint designs and features, and is ready to mount and shoot straight out of the box. The Carbine Optic will have a 30mm aluminum alloy sight tube with a fixed height mount designed to provide absolute co-witness with the chosen AR-15 back-up sights. Offered with a 2 MOA red dot, the Carbine Optic provides accurate targeting with maximum target acquisition. Typical of Aimpoint reliability, the Carbine Optic will be completely waterproof and offers a 1-year constant-on use from a single 1/3 N battery.

See the complete review here.

Do you own a red dot sight for your AR-15? How do you like it? Is it one of the sights listed here?

Give us your advice in the comments.

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6 3662

You’ve done it. You got your shiny new AR-15 built up, and you’ve even plunked off a few rounds to see your watch your new beauty do what it does best. Now comes the really fun part… tricking it out with accessories.

You’re probably getting excited by all the possible add-ons your new AR can take on, but there’s one accessory you’ll want to put pretty close to the top of your shopping list. That accessory is a solid tactical flashlight.

Think about it. What good will your AR-15 be in a low light survival situation if you can’t see well enough to shoot it? The answer is kind of obvious, but we’ll go ahead and spell it out anyway: an AR in the dark is about useful as a box of matches in a rainstorm.

So how do you fix that? You get one of these awesome tactical flashlights, that’s how.

You can spend anywhere from ~$50 to $300 on a tactical flashlight, but there are plenty of good options on both ends of the spectrum. We’ll break it down for you in three budget categories so you can find the flashlight that’s best for you. Let’s get started.

Under $100: LiteXpress SET-KOMBI89

x-tactical_litexpress
Thoughts from Reloaderaddict.com:

Combat ready is good, but a lot of folks just need a reliable weapon light that won’t break the bank. After all, the size of your wallet is vitally important when searching best light for your rifle! The LightXpress kit is one of the best AR 15 lights if you are on a budget. With a remote pressure switch, rail mounting hardware, and capability to quickly be switched to a standalone flashlight, this feature rich package will get you a high quality light on your AR for about the price of a couple hundred rounds of ammo and provide years of functionality and darkness defeating security.

Under $200: Elzette ZFL-M60

Stepping up to the next price bracket gets you a few more features and some higher quality build features. The Elzette ZFL-M60 is an impeccable choice in the under $200 price range. Check out the comprehensive video review by VuurwapaenBlog below:

Under $300: Surefire X300

Coming in at just under $300, the Surefire X300 is pricey but packed with value. Check out this brief summary from an in-depth review by Guns.com to learn more:

The X300 is unique in two ways. The first is most notable when the light is on. The X300 puts out 500 lumens, which is a tremendous amount of light. This insane beam is generated by an LED, which is the absolute standard now for flashlights. The LED bulb has a very long life, is difficult to break during normal usage, and doesn’t get as hot as old-fashioned bulbs.The second feature of the X300 is the side-by-side battery compartment. The x300 needs two 123A batteries to produce that staggering spot. Most lights put them in line, but not SureFire. The result is a wide light. It will be wider than most guns. This will make holstering the X300 a challenge.
The X300 measures 3.6 inches long and 1.3 inches wide. With batteries, the X300 weighs 4 ounces. The two 123A batteries will run the X300 for an hour and a half. If you use the light judiscuoisly, that is a long run time. Otherwise keep some spare batteries with you.The light is fully ambidextrous. The toggle switch is right at the tip of your index finger (or where your finger should be if it isn’t on the trigger). Switching off is just as easy, and can be done with the same finger, or with the thumb on the support hand.The light comes with a solid rail mount and a spring loaded clip. It slides on, catches firmly, and holds through anything. No tools required.

These are just a few of the many good options out there for equipping your AR with a weapon light. If none of these float your boat, do a little digging and you’re sure to find an ideal light.

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3 2113

To properly equip your children to withstand the struggles that may lie ahead, it’s imperative that you instruct them how to safely and accurately discharge a firearm. However, the process of teaching a young person the ins and outs of how to handle a gun is easier said than done.

There are plenty of common sense things that every parent will naturally do when teaching their children about guns, but there are also some lesser known gun training techniques that can both improve a young person’s proficiency with firearms and also ensure their ongoing safety.

Use these effective tips when you decide it’s time to teach your kids about guns. You’ll be glad you did.

Simulate Peer Pressure

As unfortunate as it may be, young people are very influenced by peer pressure. Framing gun safety rules as something that all the other kids already know and practice will help cement their importance in a young person’s mind.

Here’s more to explain:

If you have teens, add peer pressure to the scenarios. Role play another teen trying to convince your teen to pick up the gun. Make the peer pressure seem real and encourage your teen to practice, even if your teen thinks it is “silly.”

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Never Break Your Own Rules

There’s nothing worse than failing to practice what you preach. If you tell your kids one thing and they see you doing another, they’ll quickly begin to think that your gun safety rules are just official formalities that don’t really need to be adhered to in reality.

Field & Stream explains this perfectly:

You’re trying to instill lifelong safety habits, and nothing you say speaks as loudly as your own actions when you and your child hunt together. Handle your own guns with extra emphasis on safety. While we’re at it, boats, ATVs, tree stands, and motor vehicles can be just as deadly as guns if used carelessly. Your young hunter will learn all about them by watching you.

Don’t Treat Airsoft, BB, or Paintball Guns Like Toys

It’s easy for adults with firearm experience to write off low-powered airsoft and paintball guns as child’s play. After all, if they aren’t capable of deadly force, then they don’t seem quite so dangerous.

That’s a terribly flawed mindset though. Young people can easily carry over a cavalier attitude about airsoft and paintball guns over into their interactions with real firearms, and that can have terrible consequences.

Off the Grid News illustrates this point especially well:

My recommendation is to give kids a good airsoft gun sized right for them as soon as they are old enough to understand that these things are not toys. Start with the kind that shoots plastic projectiles that can be reused. Line up some soda cans about three feet away, and let your budding marksman go to town. Once your child can hit these reliably, start moving them further away.

Remember, don’t treat operating guns (even unloaded airsoft guns) like toys. These are not toys. They shoot projectiles, they are tools, and they have a purpose. This being said, shooting should be fun. I have never met a boy or girl who did not have fun with his or her first airsoft.

Celebrate Their Progress

The impact of positive reinforcement cannot be overstated. Every time your child practices correct firearm handling form, acknowledge it and praise them. Also, help them celebrate their progress by saving their targets and tracking their advancement.

The Truth About Guns says:

You want your child to take pride in their shooting. So they should “own” their target; it’s physical proof of their growing prowess. If you treat the target as important, so will they. Make your targets awesome!

For one thing, give your kid their own target, something that they’ve chosen. Splatter targets are way cool. So are hand-drawn circles. Whatever target you choose make sure you write the day, their name, their age, the distance, gun used, caliber and other details after they’ve perforated it.

For another, display the targets in your home with pride, like an art work from school. Use the target as a springboard to conversation. What do you want to try next time? Further away? Different gun? Was that a lucky shot? I bet you Mom couldn’t do that? Should we make a bet?

And lastly, have them mime the shot for Mom (or someone). Get them in the right stance, talk to them about breathing, pretending to shoot. Better yet, see if they can talk you through the entire process. What should I do first? Now what? Put your finger in an unsafe direction. See if they call you out on it.

Remove Curiosity

If your child is curious about firearms, chances are they will find a way to satisfy that curiosity, and if they try to do that in an unsupervised environment, the results could be catastrophic. Try to combat this phenomenon by making guns seem like the ordinary, everyday tools that they are. Cultivating this sense of familiarity will prevent young ones from wanting to explore guns in an unsafe way.

Amderringer.com sums this principle up well:

Avoid attaching any mystique to the firearm through flat prohibition. Nothing gets a child’s attention faster or stronger than being told “No,” without explanation or reasoning. Children are smart, and will see through flat prohibition.

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