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Firearms Guide flash drive

Review: Be Gun Smart With the New Generation Gun Guide

The Firearms Guide Flash Drive & Online Combo is modern, digital, searchable gun publication that combines a reference guide on antique and modern guns with printable gun schematics and blueprints library and with gun value guide. All that content is conveniently placed online, but also on a fast 16GB flash drive as offline backup for Windows PC or Mac.

Hornady ammunition with car windshield with bullet hole

Hornady Critical Duty/Critical Defense

There are few subjects as prone to create an argument as personal defense handguns and calibers. Some have a “devil may care” attitude and deploy anything, stating most are the same, while others go into great, even minute detail, in their testing and choices. I think that everyone should master the personal defense handgun of their choice.

English Longbow with two rifles

Reader Comments of the Week — October 13, 2018

Even regular readers of The Shooter’s Log can’t read or respond to all of the comments, so we have started a new weekly feature that will recap a sampling of the most active, interesting, or on occasion, randomly selected comments from the previous weeks. Feel free to respond with your two cents at the bottom of this article or by clicking the story link and adding it directly to the discussion.

The pistol features good workmanship and proved reliable.

Review: Phoenix HP25A — Useful or Useless?

The pistol reviewed invites cliché. As long as it begins with “four” has been a strong motto for most of my handgunning life, but then I am a great believer in the .357 Magnum. The .22 LR is a fine recreational caliber, but the .25 ACP was designed purely for personal defense. The jacketed bullet and centerfire case are more reliable than the .22 rimfire with its heel-based bullet. A 50-grain FMJ bullet at 650 fps isn’t an impressive loading. But then, the best gun is the one you have with you,

Here’s the original, the MKII by Charlie Milazzo. A long-time competition M1A builder, Charlie figured out how to do the two-stage for the AR-platform. Look closely at the illustrations and see how sear engagement changes from first stage to second stage. There’s a whopping lot of sear engagement prior to initiating the pull though the first stage, and a very “crisp” break from minimum engagement waiting after the bump when the first stage has ended. In a single-stage, such minimal engagement is necessary to get a crispy break, but it’s not as safe because it’s minimal from the get-go. In a true two-stage, releasing back through the first stage take-up also returns sear engagement to where it was. Another minor point, with major influence, is that since sear engagement returns to its formerly generous self after a shot, there’s not going to be any “tripping” of the sear as there can be with a single-stage that’s adjusted to a light weight. This can happen from the shock of bolt carrier assembly inertia. For this reason, it’s possible to attain a lower actual break weight with a two-stage. Photo by Glen Zediker © 2015.

Throwback Thursday: AR-15 Two-Stage Triggers

In my estimation, a two-stage trigger in any rifle offers the most secure, precise, and safest function. Two-stage triggers appeared in U.S.-issue service rifles, such as the 1903, M1, M14. But for the AR-15/M16, it took the civilian-side aftermarket to create the two-stage trigger. The main reason other military-use rifles carried two-stage triggers is, primarily, because they are safer. There are other attributes to discuss, but safety is the main point in favor of a two-stage.

QuikClot Advanced Clotting gauze

Mass Shooting — Minimizing the Damage

Every single person in the country—except the perpetrators—agree we need fewer deaths from school / mass shootings. Those of us in the gun community know more guns in the hands of good guys means the bad guy gets neutralized (killed) faster. This would greatly reduce the number of casualties. Unfortunately, outside of a few locations, that kind of action is a non-starter… because of politics. However, even if it wasn’t, there is another angle to attack this problem. You also have the potential to increase the survivability of those injured.

Tourniquet and field dressing

At bare minimum, your blowout kit should have a pressure dressing, gauze and a tourniquet.

Notice, I am not focused on preventing school / mass shootings. That is not something that will ever happen. Evil people do evil things, and they greatly prefer to do them in low-risk, high-emotion, high-casualty areas. Regardless of where you are on the gun debate, and I am pretty sure I know where you stand if you are reading this, we should all agree that reducing the number of deaths at school or other mass shootings is a great goal. Ask yourself, “How can we reduce the carnage caused by mass shooters if the law prevents carrying a firearm in the most likely areas?”

The law prevents you from carrying a defensive handgun, and in some places even from carrying a knife, but it does not prevent you from carrying a tourniquet. These laws do not stop you from carrying rolls of gauze, compression bandages, or chest seals either. Think about that for a minute. At the most recent school shooting, how many casualties died due to blood loss 10–30 minutes after being shot? More than half of the people killed at Pulse Night Club died 20–45 minutes after being wounded. How many of those people could be alive today if someone had applied a tourniquet to their leg or arm?

Sometimes you have to work with what you have or what exists. Of course, I carry a gun (sometimes two) everywhere I go. That often means, I don’t go certain places because my life is worth it. The Post Office is a prime example. In all 50 states, it is illegal to be armed in a Post Office. However, there are alternatives.

  • Buy stamps at the grocery store.
  • Use Post Office kiosks as those are not Federal Property and you can most often carry there.
  • Use parcel businesses that do Post Office functions.
  • My late wife and I had a plan for when we absolutely had to go to the Post Office. One of us went in, the other stayed in the car armed and vigilant.

The same thing applies to gun free zones, when considering the reduction of the death rate. Have emergency medical supplies on you or in your vehicle. My everyday bag is a tactical backpack (Drago Assault Pack) with a medic bag on the left side and a tourniquet holster and Gen 7 Cat tourniquet on the right side. Along with basic band aids, Tylenol, etc., my medic bag has:

QuikClot Advanced Clotting gauze

Many first aid items you can apply to yourself or others with a minimum amount of training.

I also have a moderate amount of training on how to use these items, but that isn’t even really the point. Quite often there is someone in the crowd who knows how to use them, but a sucking chest wound is likely fatal without a vented chest seal. Even if a doctor, nurse, or EMT is around, they can’t do much without the proper equipment.

My backpack, with the medic cross on the side bag and the exposed tourniquet holster on the other side will alert any professional to possible useful contents—even if I am already a casualty. If I am still active, I can use them or provide them to a more qualified person. The contents of my EDC medic bag can save between one and three people until proper medical attention can arrive. The med kit also works for more common issues such as car wrecks, industrial accidents, or stabbings.

Tactical medicine scenarios with medics, instructors and victims

Even if you are unable to apply aid to yourself, there is a very good chance someone will be able and qualified—if the materials are there.

Let’s make the Mandalay Bay Concert shooting a teachable moment.

Of the 51 people who died:

  • 21 were shot in the head or neck – Likely, a med kit would have been of little help for them.
  • 21 were shot in the chest – A vented chest seal may have reduced the death rate by +/- 30% (4 to 7 additional survivors).
  • 15 were shot in the back – A vented chest seal may have reduced the death rate by +/- 30% (3 to 5 additional survivors).

1 was shot in the leg – A tourniquet would have provided nearly a 100% survival chance.

If my numbers are anywhere near accurate, the 51 deaths drops by 8 to 13 people. No one will suggest that roughly 40 deaths would have been good thing, but I think a 20% reduction would have been a great thing. I also know the families of those saved would be much happier with them still among the living.

The concert had an attendance of approximately 20,000. If one person out of 200 had a kit similar to mine, there would have been 100 such kits. If we assume 90% of those people fled the scene or hunkered down, that still means there are 10 usable kits in the area. These would be immediately available for those who were fighting to save the wounded. As it stood, the Las Vegas PD and other first responders did a great job and did have a fair amount of this equipment on hand. Unfortunately, when seconds counted, they were miles and minutes away.

When you, a loved one, or a fellow country music fan is bleeding out, a delay of seconds can be crucial. A delay of minutes… fatal.

Are you prepared? Can you spare $200 for durable goods to save your, or someone else’s, life if the unthinkable happens?

Handgun on top of a pile of U.S. Currency

The Anti-Gunners Are ‘Spending Millions’ in Midterm Elections

If you though the anti-gunners were beat with election of President Trump and one or two nominations to the Supreme Court, think again. The Washington Post has reported that anti-gun billionaire Michael Bloomberg’s Everytown for Gun Safety “plans to spend $8 to $10 million in Georgia, Michigan, Nevada, and New Mexico” to influence the midterm elections, via its “Action Fund.” And that is not the full extent of expenditures by the gun prohibition group’s fund, either.

Will Dabbs shooting the Kel-Tec RFB

Reader Comments of the Week — October 6, 2018

Even regular readers of The Shooter’s Log can’t read or respond to all of the comments, so we have started a new weekly feature that will recap a sampling of the most active, interesting, or on occasion, randomly selected comments from the previous weeks. Feel free to respond with your two cents at the bottom of this article or by clicking the story link and adding it directly to the discussion.

Arex Rex Delta pistol profile left

Arex Introduces New Striker-Fired Polymer Pistol — Arex Delta First Look

Arex broke into the market in a big way with the introduction of the Rex zero 1S. The pistol was not revolutionary or chock full of new features. Instead, many labeled its reliability as the ultimate SHTF gun—an improvement on current popular models all combined into one gun. The zero 1 was followed by the Alpha, an out-of-the-box competition-ready pistol with an MSRP around $1,000. For 2019, Arex is set to release the Delta, a striker-fired polymer pistol, and The Shooter’s Log went to Slovenia to get a first look at the prototype.

Tooled leather case with dark brown edge and gold, red and orange design on a woven gray-and-white background, with the stippled black handle of the Ruger showing.

Tips for Choosing the Right Holster

Finding  the right holster should not be hard to do, but it can be. How many of us have a box, bag, or drawer full of holsters we do not use? Why are they there? Like most people, you likely purchased them and they either did not fit your gun, were the wrong type, did not wear comfortably or you just decided you didn’t like it.

English Longbow with two rifles

The World’s First ‘Assault Weapon’ — The English Longbow

What exactly is an “Assault Weapon” anyway? Guys like us would assert that it is a lightweight, selective-fire, military-issue shoulder arm firing an intermediate cartridge. Folks such as Charles Schumer and Nancy Pelosi apparently think an “Assault Weapon” is anything more dangerous than dental floss. Regardless of semantics, the English longbow was a world-changing weapon in its day.

HK VP70Z with four boxes of ammunition and a target

Retro Review: HK VP70Z

The HK VP70 began as a space age version of the disposable single-shot Liberator pistol that the OSS dropped to resistance members fighting the Nazis during the Second World War. The original intent was to produce a reliable, rugged, selective-fire 9mm machine pistol that could be economically produced in quantity. The gun was intended to arm partisans operating behind enemy lines during a global conflict with the Warsaw Pact that thankfully never quite brewed up. Radically advanced by any objective standard, the VP70 was almost, but not quite, awesome.

Model 15 revolver right

Going Old School

I am not a collector but an accumulator. A collector owns a collection of firearms with the many models carefully cataloged. Some are more common and others, and the key pieces are often quite rare. My firearms are what interests me. The only ones represented in numbers are Colt 1911 pistols and Smith and Wesson revolvers.

Shotgun with several shotshells

The Shotgun for Home Defense

Not long ago, the conversation turned to shotguns at the gun shop. While even the folks that are not the ones we call “gunny” know the merits of a shotgun for home defense, there are many opinions on the proper load and the best shotgun. The shotgun is primarily a projectile launcher and it is best to use what you are comfortable and familiar with.