Well That Hit the Spot!

DSC_1665Much to the chagrin of my ex-wife, the rumors of my demise have been highly exaggerated! I’ve taken a bit of a sabbatical from the blog to regroup and get some much needed down time and perspective on life. In doing so I have learned much about myself and my new world, who my friends are and that the Friend of the Court is really no ones friend…they don’t even like each other!

 

With that said, I was also afforded the time to gear test….and boy, did I ever! So first up is a new product from LaserLyte, the SCV4. Now I know that there are a lot of  pistol lasers on the market but this one steals the show. Designed for ease of use, smooth drawing and reholstering and reduces printing for concealed carry

Now don’t let it diminutive size fool you. This is a full feature device with ambidextrous controls. Its user interface is simple. There are two buttons, push oneDSC_1669 and it turns on push again and it blinks, hold and it turns off…see? Simple…

 

DSC_1667Zeroing was just as easy. I used the enclosed allen wrench and brought the dot in line with my sights on a target at distance and presto! Done! I took the laser off, shook it vigorously and dropped it on the floor a few times! After reattaching and tightening it back onto my pistol I turned it on….Bingo Bango! the laser and the sights still lined up!! Now for Peter’s Indoor Gun Range!!!

 

Again, the Four Fellows of Tom Foolery  (myself, father, uncle and cousin) met up at the range for another dose of gunfire and chilli dogs. I had taken the laser off and tossed it into my range bag so a bit of digging was necessary before I could partake of the gratuitous gunfire erupting around me. Attaching the laser I once again verified the sight/light alignment and proceeded to lock and load! It kinda went like this….

 

DSC_0730Dot!….BANG!…Hole….Dot!….BANG!….Hole….Dot!….BANG!…Hole…You get the idea.

 

After several rounds I was beginning to feel like a deranged cat going ballistic (ha!) after a red laser dot!! I decided toDSC_0734 speed things up a bit and the accuracy and resiliency of this little unit was amazing! Even in rapid fire aiming was easy shot after shot. One thing I did notice was that after ten rounds there would only be 5 to 6 holes on paper, this meant that rounds were going through holes from previous shots! Now that’s the Bomb’digity!!

The laser withstood repeat recoil from my Liberty Ammunition +P loads with no perceivable drift from alignment. Those are some hot loads and I absolutely love their performance. The gun thundered, the action cycled and that little laser just kept on going!

As I mentioned above, with its diminutive size and smoothed out edges the SCV4 from LaseLyte makes a great choice for the concealed carry crowed or armed professional looking for just a little more in the shot placement department.

 

For more information or to order yours, click here……

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Getting to the Heart of the Matter with the Gerber Cortex…

logoGerber calls it the Cortex…I call it nothing short of awesome. Weighing in at a scant 2.12 oz. and no longer than 4“ it is the epitome of good things in small packages.

The construction is rock solid with one of the most serious non-slip surfaces I’ve ever seen. Wet, dry or full of dirt,this light isn’t going anywhere. The aggressive checkering bites into your grip making your hand and the light one. And that’s a good thing if you ever have need to employ its crenelated bezel! I tell ya’ the features just keep coming with this one… the Cortex sports a wickedly scalloped ring for striking that could really pack a punch, especially considering it’s diameter is just there right size to fill your hand and give your fist a little extra “umph!”

The beam is bright and blasts throughout the thick lens without any artifacts or dark spots. With a max output of 125 lumens and strobe, it’s more thanCortex-Compact-Flashlight_fulljpg necessary to disable an assailant or light up a room to take stock of your surroundings.

High, low and strobe are selected by cycling the heavy duty clicker switch in the tail cap. The switch is sealed against dust and water infiltration and provides a sharp click for user feedback letting you know it’s been pressed.

Now for the real gem in all this. The gang over at Gerber have come up with this technology called Omnivore. Personally when I hear the word omnivore I think of the likes of a T-Rex or a pack of wolves taking down their prey to the sounds of gnashing teeth and ripping flesh… then munching on some leaves and twigs to round it out, being  not picky about what their eating!! kinda’ creepy I know but apply those thoughts to powering a flashlight and you have Gerber’s new offering to the LEO, MIL and EDC crowd!

But what is Omnivore ?

DSC_0729Omnivore allows the torch to operate on either the proven and trusty A123 battery or the ubiquitous and much venerated AA! Now there are some tradeoffs in performance between the two and the overall length of the light changes depending on the battery used, but in my opinion it’s more than worth it to get such a flexible battlefield pickup!

Here in Michigan we’ve had one of the coldest winters on record, so banking on this I left the Cortex in my truck for several days in well below zero weather. The result? The Cortex suffered no ill effects to performance from the cold!

This little light is a performer. Running either battery option provides more than enough light for task work, navigation or looking for Legos under the couch! In fact I actually got to use it in a real world emergency. I was at a local fishing spot with a friend when we were approached by a woman looking for help. Her elderly husband had fallen into the rocks that line the shore and was unable to get up. I grab my bag and pull out my Cortex, my friendDSC_0734 grabbed her phone  and off we went! The Cortex lit up the rocks like daylight and soon enough we found him. There he was, on his back and wedged between two rocks and unable to wright himself. With a little leverage and a supportive arm, the man was back on his feet and heading home! If it wasn’t for the Cortex, I would have had a harder time finding him and that increased search time could have resulted in a worse outcome.

The Cortex has become part of my “Grayman” EDC load out. It’s diminutive size and disproportionate output makes it a slam dunk when you want to be prepared, yet blend in like everyone else.

Click here for more information or to order yours

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Happy Easter, Here’s Your Holster!

logoI love old western movies… The boots, the hats and of course the flashy vests. And fringe!! Oh dear God, the fringe!! Ha, not really! but the one thing that does come to mind though, are the holsters… You never see an the waist band holsters or shoulder rigs. Why is that? Because those were reserved for city slickers, that’s why!

So, what did the rough ‘n tough gunslingers of old’e use. Most, if not all, had a low riding leather setup that was more akin to today’s thigh rigs than anything else. They were functional holsters designed to be used while mounted or walking about townDSC_0647 at high noon. Your gun was kept within arms reach. Just grip and pull…no lifting your shirt or opening your coat. Your gun was right at your finger tips, quite literally!!

Now as time passed advances in materials and design resulted in the holster evolving from its romantic six shooter cradling past into the rugged tactical thigh holsters of today that hold the latest in semi auto pistols sporting lights, lasers and everything in between!

I’ve had the opportunity to use the Universal Dropleg Holster from TACPROGEAR and I like it. As with all of the quadthighdrawgear from TACPRO, the stitching is spot on and quality materials are used throughout. It’s fully adjustable for leg size and the amount of drop you want and accommodates a wide variety of handguns. It’s obvious the care and thought that went into the overall design of this rig and you are truly going to get your money’s worth!

Now, outside of military and law enforcement there’s not a big demand for thigh rigs…or so you think!

I’ve worn the rig while on my quad, in my boat fishing and it makes perfect sense to use when wearing heavy coats or LVB/chest rigs. When do I wear a chst rig you ask? Click hear to read about my HSG chest rig pulling fishing duty! The drop leg setup provided quick and easy access to my weapon yet kept it secured to my leg.  Not once was I afraid it was going to fall out our be lost in some way. The leg straps were as comfortable as they were secure and the entire thing moved with my body.

quadthighBut how was the draw? Smooth as butter! Once on and adjusted, my sidearm was directly in position with my hand resting at my side. The draw is literally grab and pull! You could spend hours tweaking the leg fit and drop length but don’t… Put it where it feels right and run with it!

This is one of my favorite all around carry setups. Its comfortable, practical and a really useful rig. Now, your not going to win any fashion contests with it and you should pick your audience wisely. Back woods ATV riding, farm work, hiking… sure… walking into your local Wallmart to pick up a gallon of milk? Probably not a really good idea!!

 

For more information and to order yours, click here!

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Blinded by the Light!

SLEHTQTBXJO543JEINV060What do you get when you cross a state of the art Coast Portland flashlight with a badger? You get the HP7R, a light that never says die!! The light ships.more as a kit than it does a single product. In the box are two rechargeable Li batteries, a AAA battery pack, USB wall wart, belt clip and a vehicle/wall mounting clip!!

Whew! That’s a lot of stuff!! I was shocked to see what all was in the box…coast has been a long running leader and innovator in the realm of lighting technologies and thieving cements that spot in my opinion. I’ve been using the HP7R as an EDC light for quite some time and have logged a few charges in on the batteries.

So where to start….

The construction is rock solid with a recessed clicker switch at the rear. Every button press is rewarded with a discernable “CLICK” letting you know that it’s been pressed as you cycle through its modes and it’s nonslip rubber cap keeps water and debris out.

At the opposite end is Coast’s signature lens and easy to use focusing technology. The lights that Coast make are awesome…not only do they throw brilliantDSC_0512 spots and smooth floods, but they are rugged lights that can take a lot of abuse!

It’s been dropped, kicked, tossed, stepped on, covered in snow, frozen over night… If you could imagine it, it’s happened, and this light just keeps on going! It’s been part of my EDC for several months and found a permanent home in my Tactical tailor shoulder bag. The light and spare rechargeable battery take up little room and add little to no weight. The runtime is as advertised with really fast recharging from any USB based outlet.

DSC_0511Aside from the two batteries, AAA battery adapter and various charging hardware the really cool items in the box are the belt clip and wall/car mount. They are made from impact resistant polymer and ready to wear or mount. Plus the light clamp on both rotate putting the light at any angle you could want!

Soo, what’s got me glowing about this flashlight?

Is it the single handed focusing of the beam?

Could it be the sliding metal ring on the tailcap that protects the micro USB charging port?

What about the charge indicator light or the fact that you can charge the batteries outside of the torch?

All of these are great features that make for spectacular piece of equipment but what’s really the bright spot here is the strobe. All tactical lights strobe. It’s a great way to get attention, signal and distract our dazzle an aggressor. Some flash fast and some slow… But this one does both!

“FLASH FLASH FLASH STROBE FLASH FLASH FLASH STROBE!”

DSC_0510You get the idea! What a great feature! Now my testing methods are anything but scientific and typically involve a heavy application of the empirical process… The study group was comprised of friends and coworkers and testing was done in a “surprise” manner. This method allowed me to obtain genuine reactions and all exposures were followed by the obligatory “was that bright or what!?” statement and observations were made of the subjects verbal and physical response. Responses ranged from “oh yeah!” to phrases I would rather not repeat!! But most participants had the same reaction to the strobe… Hands covering closed eyes, walking stopped and 80% were generally irritated by it. The strobe is an effective attention getter and stuns subjects extremely well. in a defensive situation it would be more than effective in helping you get away from an attacker and an offensive application would definitely aid in subduing a subject.

All in all, the Coast HP7R is a great light that can take an immense amount of abuse an keeps on going. If your in the market for a light for your pack or pocket, look no further.

Click here for more information or to order yours…

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Range Day!

petersEarlier in the week my father, uncle, cousin and I went to our favorite local range. It had been predetermined at our Christmas party that a guys night out with gratuitous gunfire followed by a very unhealthy yet satisfying meal was required! After much wrangling of schedules and a plethora of text messages it was decided Tuesday night up at Peters Indoor Gun Range.

My father and I assembled our arsenals and ammo, holstered up and headed out the door.

We walked into Peters and were welcomed by sounds of gunfire on the lanes and a friendly hello from the guy behind the counter. My uncle arrived and the three of us began shooting the breeze until my cousin showed. We had to shoot something, we were at the range after all! After paying the range fees, which are quite reasonable there, and buying some target ammo we went out and picked our lanes. I was first on the line and ready to go…BAM! BAM!! BAM!!! My P95 roared into action and readily devoured the new Liberty Ammunition +P rounds I had just gotten for it.

This was my first time using +P ammunition and I was really blown away! Of course there’s always that bit of hesitation knowing that your running high pressure ammo and turning your pistol into a hand cannon but I was really surprised by the performance. Not only were these rounds more powerful but they were lighter because they were lead free. The reduction in weight not only made carrying more comfortable but I found my gun to be more controllable making my follow up shots or double taps more accurate! In fact,my Ruger ran like a top and the report was so loud I found myself surrounded by the trio trying to figure out who was shooting the “Big Gun”!

After the initial “Shock and Awe” wore off I dropped into training mode and gave my gun and the new rounds a work out.

The night was really a lot of fun and everyone got to try each others guns. My uncle had a sharp .22 target pistol that was spot on and a breeze to keep on target shot after shot. It had a detachable laser that was…well…detached due to a lack of batteries! I can only imagine how well it works with the laser on! 

My cousin brought a few of his guns to shoot and share but the high point was when he produced our grandfather’s .451911 that the family’s patriarch used while in the Pacific. The old gun showed its age with all the grace and class you would expect of an old warrior. The wooden grips pressed into my skin as I sighted down the slide. I squeezed the trigger and she jumped to life…Through the muzzle flash and smoke I could almost make out the shapes, shadows and dangers of the South Pacific Jungles and her tunnels.  For a moment, just a moment, there was connection that spanned time and death and it felt as if he was there with us, smiling in approval… Another piece of the puzzle that is my grandfather as a young man at war was on the table but we were still no closer to putting it all together. The man epitomized the “Quiet Professional” about his time in the service and made it seem dull and mundane even though his photographs, official papers and medals would suggest otherwise.

coneyAfter much throwing of lead and rending of paper targets our range time expired and we regrouped at the nearest National Coney Island to debrief. Rehashing our range time, we talked of things of men till our testosterone levels were restored and decided it was time to part ways! A great night was had by all and I look forward to doing it again.

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Home on the Range…

logoWhen I get new products to review I try to do so in a timely fashion but every now and then something comes along that cant be fully tested in a few months and then written about. This product from TYR Tactical is one such item. I have used it for almost a year in every possible way from fishing to hiking to working around the house and found it to be tops.

 Enter the TYR Tactical Gunfighter Belt!

Boy, is this thing is cool…designed to carry your sidearm and a slew of MOLLE/PALS pouches, the belt really adds versatility to your mission configurations. The pouch and gear options are endless and I found it easy to kit out! The Gunfighter is well made with two rows of webbing and removable hook loop secured padding. The cobra buckle is nothing short of amazing. It opens and closes with ease but will not open under load, which is a nice thing considering the Gunfighter pulls double duty as a riggers belt and can save your butt from falling out of your tree stand or into a raging river from your favorite cliff side fishing spot!

Functionally, its all there…The two rows of webbing are more than adequate to hold your accessories andbelt1 pouches in an organized and secure manner. The construction and finish is spot on and holds true to the quality craftsmanship that TYR Tactical is known for. After all my abuse, not a single popped stitch and the hook loop for the padding is still as good as new. Top of the line materials make up the construction and the design has been well thought out. I found the Gunfighter Belt to be comfortable to wear and easy to customize. From a tactical perspective you can setup it up for a specific load out and throw it in your cruiser’s trunk…Grab it when you need it and be mission ready in a single click!

cobraFishing and Hiking provided an opportunity to test the feasibility of a heavy kit being put directly on the hips…It worked great! The removable padding helped to ease the load and its air mesh construction substantially reduced chaffing and sweating. The big attractor was that the belt and gear was able to be worn over heavy coats and jackets! So how did it work? Like a charm! Having all my necessary gear around my waist was a lot more comfortable and accessible than I thought it would be. Everything was right where I needed it and within reach. 

 

Now, I’ve told you about how it works…how its constructed…and how it performed…now let me tell you how it “Feels”. Don’t pretend to act like you don’t know what I’m talking about. Think back to when you first tried on the tac gloves with knuckle protectors…the fit was good, materials were comfortable and they breathed well but how did they “Feel”? You know how it was, you felt unstoppable! You felt as if you could halt the rotation of the earth and pound your enemies into submission!!! Well here’s my take on the Gunfighter Belt…

So I take the belt out of the bag, adjust it and put it on…Hmm…ok, it’s a belt. I go to the back of the house and kit it out…on goes a BDS admin pouch, dump pouch, the Pancake of Death, a SOG Tomahawk and a holster with my P95…It looked good laying there on the bed and had a bit more weight to it than I expected but I put it on anyway…

WOOSH!!

IMAG1410

Somewhere in a deserted western town the saloon’s doors slammed open, a coyote howled an eagle took to the sky because a Gunfighter had just been born!! All I needed was a hat and some boots ‘cause my two kids and the ex were in the other room providing “The Good, The Bad and The Ugly”! I’ll let you guess who’s who!! It was great! My gear was secure and easy to get too and the weight rested on my hips in a good way. The ample padding mitigated any shocks and bumps making for a nice and comfortable wear.

All kidding aside, this is one sweet addition to any tactical tool kit. It expands your options of load carriage and helps to improve your operational performance on any mission you take.

 

Click here for more information and to get yours!

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2013 debrief…

Wow, what a year! We did some great articles about new gear, built a survival/bugout truck and had a few adventures. We looked at offerings from BlueForce, SOG, and INFORCE to name a few. We interviewed Tim Ralston and got some insight into who he is and where he’s headed! Kestrel jumped in with one of their advanced weather meters and CampCo sent us a Titanium Spork! We have some great new products in the que and one that has been a long term test subject.

2014 promises to be a banner year for the Blog with several expeditions planned. We are going to deviate a little from our format and throw in some editorial and possible guest writers! 

 

On a personal note, I’m glad to see ‘13 go…it was a year of upheaval with way to much drama and tears. They say what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger…well I could give the strong man at the circus a run for his money!  I have learned who my true friends are…that family will always have your back and sometimes, things don’t work out the way we planned…and that’s ok because no matter how dark it gets, the sun is still going to rise in the morning!

 

As always, thanks for reading!

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