Posts Tagged ‘Tactical’

SHOT 2014 — Southern Crossbow Risen XT 350

The beginning of the year is typically the time companies roll out their new products, which is worthy news. However, this time it is a new company that has piqued our interest. Southern Crossbow is built on the idea of integrating age-old American resourcefulness and perseverance with modern equipment. These one-of-a-kind, tactical crossbows are different than the typical genre of the traditional crossbow market. With a matte black finish instead of a camouflage print, Southern Crossbows incorporate the style and customizable traits of a tactical weapon’s platform with an innovative crossbow structure.

Picture shows the right side and the left side of Weatherby's black, pump-action tactical shotgun.

Truly Tactical and Versatile: Weatherby’s PA-459 is Threaded for Chokes

“Every person who enters any house, room, apartment, tenement, shop, warehouse, store, mill, barn, stable, outhouse, or other building, tent, vessel… with intent to commit grand or petit larceny or any felony is guilty of burglary,” reads California Penal Code 459.

Federal law does not only protect the right to self-defense, but it is also our God-given right to defend ourselves and our property from someone immediately attempting to commit a felony. If that day were to ever happen, I want to make sure I have the correct tools to protect myself.

BLACKHAWK Legacy X6P Light-901

BLACKHAWK Legacy X6P, X9P, X6 Night-Ops Hand Held Flashlights

Light it up! The three handheld flashlights from BLACKHAWK are a very good choice in tactical illumination. To me the name BLACKHAWK has always meant quality when it comes to most anything tactical. These three lights are no different. For the person who doesn’t want to spend $100 on a light for their night shooting, or to attach to their shotgun, you will be thrilled with these lights.

What Makes a Folding Knife Tactical?

Sales of tactical folding knives have swelled in the past few years. Hundreds of different models are being offered and it’s rare to see a major knife manufacturer that doesn’t offer some sort of knife in this category. But what makes a folding knife “tactical,” and are they popular for a good reason or is this just a dumb fad?

Smith & Wesson M&P

Smith & Wesson M&P

Tactical knives certainly don’t look like your grandpa’s folding knives. His pocketknives featured thin blades that are extremely sharp, and usually included more than one folding blade contained in the handle. That handle was traditionally made of wood, or sometimes ivory or animal horn. The tactical folding knives are different, with a single thick blade sometimes featuring aggressive serrations, and grips made to fit the hand rather than look pretty. These knives look scary on purpose, reflecting the huge “tactical” trend that has defined the past decade and continues to grow.  But aggressive looks—blackened blades and grips made of plastic, zytel, or simply more raw metal—don’t make a knife “tactical.”  Some of the most aggressive, scariest looking knife designs aren’t tactical at all, falling instead under “fantasy” knives.  If the intended purpose is to slay dragons or protect the Klingon Empire, its not a tactical knife at all.

All Tactical Folders Have a Blade Lock

One feature all tactical folding knives have is a blade lock to hold the blade firmly in place until the user operates a lever or button to allow the blade to fold closed. The lock is a must because the tactical folder is intended for harsh tasks, where the user’s hand will be wrapped completely around the handle and gripping tightly, and where the blade may be pushed in different directions. A knife that unexpectedly collapses back onto the fingers holding is definitely an unsuccessful design!  The most popular lock type is the liner lock.  When folded inside the handle, the blade is surrounded on each side by a metal “liner.” As the blade reaches its open position, one of the liners acts like a leaf spring and jumps into the space in the middle of the handle, holding the blade open until the user pushes it back into place, allowing the blade to fold. The liner lock is simple to incorporate into a knife design with minimal cost, but it has been criticized as lacking in strength. This reputation isn’t helped by the fact that many of the cheapest knives use poorly executed liner locks, giving the design a bad name when they fail. Some tactical knives dispose of the liners entirely and use only a lightweight, skeletonized “frame lock” performing the same function. High quality knife makers often incorporate more sophisticated locking designs such as Benchmade’s AXIS lock. The AXIS lock uses a spring loaded button passing all the way through the frame, fitting into a notch cut in the back of the blade, locking it into place with great strength. The design of the lock is largely personal preference; the quality of the parts creating the locking system separates the contenders from the pretenders.

Tactical Folders Usually are Partially Serrated

Tactical folders often incorporate serrations into their blades. These little teeth aggressively saw through hard to cut materials. Serrations can add a lot of versatility to a knife—if half the blade is serrated then tough tasks which would abuse or dull the straight edge can be tackled by the serrated section of knife, saving the rest of the blade and getting the job done quickly. The disadvantage to serrations is that they dull relatively quickly and take special tools and a lot of time to sharpen. Blades without serrations are usually intended for “fine” slicing work, and blades that are totally serrated all the way down are usually intended for heavy, coarse use where no finesse is required.

5.11 Tactical C.U.B. Master 2.0

5.11 Tactical C.U.B. Master 2.0

Blade Shapes of Tactical Folders Must be Efficient

Tactical folders feature a wide variety of blade shapes. To describe all the tantos, drop points, bowie styles, clip points, and hawksbills would take a whole separate blog post (and maybe I will write one sometime), but regardless of the exact shape, the blade shapes are all intended to be used as competent self defense weapons. This is what separates a serious tactical folder from a traditional pocketknife or a fantasy knife. Personally, my first rule of knife fighting is to bring a gun, but there are many places where concealed carry of firearms is still very restricted. Yet folding knives with blades of ordinary length are often specifically exempted in state law definitions as not being “weapons” at all. Tactical folders are carried easily without scabbards, using clips that hold them at the ready in a pants pocket, and they are unobtrusive and lightweight. It’s easy to forget that you have one with you until it is needed. But once employed as a fighting knife, all the features of the tactical folder come together to benefit the user—the thick blade, the blade lock, the aggressive blade shapes and the ergonomic non-slip grips all combine to maximize efficiency. A high quality tactical knife is a better fighting knife than a plain pocket knife, easier to carry everyday than a decorative fantasy knife, and practical enough to be used for all the mundane chores that it will be asked to do in the course of ordinary life.

Blackhawk! Must have Products

Former Navy SEAL Mike Noell started BLACKHAWK! in 1993. While Mike was crossing a minefield in enemy territory, he was lugging around a huge pack that eventually failed, spilling equipment all over the explosive ground. He told another operator, “If I get out of this one alive, I will make this stuff the way it needs to be built so none of my buddies have to go through this.” When he retired from service, he did exactly that. Today BLACKHAWK! maintains a network of loyal dealers, and produces some of the finest tactical equipment ever made. We recently came across a couple of items that we thought might interest folks.


Shell Storage

Do you often find yourself in gunfights and low on OO-buck? Shotgun shells can be bulky and take up all the room on your tactical vest. BLACKHAWK! has come up with the perfect solution to your tact-vest real estate woes. The BLACKHAWK! 55-round bandoleer allows you to carry maximum firepower, with minimum effort. This really is a perfect way to carry around extra ammunition for your tactical shotgun. Perfect for 3-Gun match competitors or bird hunters who see a lot of action. If you are going to be doing a lot of shooting and don’t feel like lugging out your bulky tactical vest, the BLACKHAWK! shotgun bandoleer is perfect for an afternoon out in the field. Digging through a bulky dump bag for your shotgun shells can cause slower loading times. In my experience, having your shells neatly secured across your chest is the professional and most effective way to carry your lead. This bandoleer can hold either 12-gauge or 20-gauge ammunition. Heavy-duty nylon 2.25” military pistol belt webbing ensures the bandoleer will last a lifetime. There really does not seem to be a better way to carry around a lot of shotgun ammunition.

Tactical Hydration

Side Hydration Pouch

For those of you who are going on a short patrol, or a quick run around the track while wearing your battle rattle, the S.T.R.I.K.E. and MOLLE compatible BLACKHAWK! side hydration pouch is perfect when you do not want 100 ounces of water on your back weighing you down. The pouch also has a quick disconnect feature that allows you to switch effortlessly from one pouch to another. BLACKHAWK!’s patented speeds clips make it easy to mount the pouch on the side, back or front of your web belt. Microban antimicrobial technology protects the inner bladder from bacteria and other germs. Available in black or tan, the BLACKHAWK! Side Hydration Pouch is perfect for when you do not want to get bogged down and still carry around an entire Liter of H2O.
BLACKHAWK! products continue to be an industry leader in all things tactical. Whether it is for military, law enforcement, or the tactical enthusiast, Blackhawk gear delivers superior quality, with field-tested results every time.

Check out our BLACKHAWK! Products here!