CategoriesNew Gun Releases

For Auto Emergencies: HEDR Vehicle Trauma Kit

The HEDR vehicle trauma kit from Dark Angel Medical has been around a while now, but they’ve apparently upgraded. They wanted it more secure for off-road driving, back-country travel, and assorted Mad Maxian adventures. This is what we know about the HEDR 2.0 vehicle IFAK. 

HEDR Vehicle Trauma Kit

Dark Angel Medical is happy to announce they’ve upgraded the original HEDR  (Headrest Emergency Deployment Rig) Trauma Kit. The updated HEDR 2.0 trauma kits are now better designed to withstand the shock of offroading and backroad travel.

“Mountains are not fair or unfair, they are just dangerous.”

Reinhold Messner

The NHTSA and CDC advise 2 million + people are injured every year in a vehicle accident. Thousands more are killed (34,000 in 2017 and 36,000 in 2019 for instance).

This makes traffic-related fatalities the third most common non-related cause of death in the United States.

animated gif of headrest medical kit being deployed

Knowing the numbers, why wouldn’t you have something in your vehicle to deal with a medical emergency? Why avoid life’s adventures just because they’re riskier than staying home?

We road-tested the HEDR in the mountains of our Colorado HQ and decided it was time for an upgrade. There’s a new retention strap to keep it securely mounted to the headrest. Additional straps inside the kit to keep individual contents firmly in place and accessible if an emergency interrupts your day  – saving you precious seconds if you need to access them.

HEDR headrest IFAK for vehicles

The HEDR is available in Black, Coyote Tan, or Wolf Grey.

Here’s what the full HEDR 2.0 kit contains:

  1 x Hemostatic Gauze (QuikClot Bleeding Control Dressing or ChitoGauze)

  1 x Pair Nitrile Gloves

  1 x Mini Compression Bandage

  1 x HALO Seals

  1 x Compressed Gauze

  1 x Eye Shield, Polycarbonate

  1 x Mylar Blanket

  1 x NPA

  1 x CAT or SOFTT-W TQ with room for 2 more tourniquets

  1 x Full Size Shears 

Dark Angel HEDR vehicle med kit

 

Dark Angel HEDR vehicle med kit

Note: Can be upgraded to ARS, HALO Vent or a combo of both

Complete Kit Weight: 3 lb

Complete Kit Dimensions: 6.5” Tall x 11.5” Wide x 1.5” Thick

HEDR Panel Weight: 1 lb

HEDR Panel Dimensions: 6.5” Tall x 11.5” Wide x 0.75” Thick

The HEDR deployment rig (pouch only) can be purchased separately, as can individual tourniquet holders.

Simplicity under stress.

About Dark Angel in their own words. 

Dark Angel Medical is a veteran-owned small business founded with the intention to deliver lifesaving training, provide innovative personal trauma kits, and enable anyone to deal with a life-threatening injury under time-is-life constraints.

 

CategoriesNew Gun Releases

Christensen Arms Introduces the New Ridgeline Scout Rifle

You may be familiar with Christensen Arms Ridgeline rifle, or the “quintessential hunting rifle” that’s been around for some time. Christensen Arms has combined “all the best features of the Ridgeline into a new, compact scout rifle.” It’s a bit more lightweight than the Ridgeline at 5.9 lbs. and they say it was designed specifically for situations requiring a “compact firearm such as hunting from a ground blind, tree stand or possible use as a truck gun.”

Christensen Arms Ridgeline Scout. (Image courtesy of Christensen Arms)

Here’s more from Christensen Arms about the Ridgeline Scout Rifle.

Building upon the ever popular Christensen Arms Ridgeline series, the Ridgeline Scout is a purpose-built, bolt-action rifle chassis that combines all the best features of the Ridgeline into a new compact scout rifle. Specialized features include a Black-Nitride coated action, 0-MOA optic rail, barricade stop, a 10-rd AICS drop-box magazine, and a flat-shoe Trigger Tech trigger, all on a tan and black carbon fiber composite Sporter stock.

Weighing in at just 5.9 lbs., the Ridgeline Scout is available in four calibers all with a 16” muzzle-threaded barrel creating an ideal suppressor host. Most Ridgeline Scout rifles are backed by the Christensen Arms Sub-MOA Guarantee.

Christensen-Arms-Rideline-Scout-Lifestyle
The Ridgeline Scout for lightweight carry. (Image courtesy of Christensen Arms]

“We are excited to add the new Ridgeline Scout rifle to the Ridgeline series. The intent was to offer shooters the same familiarity and performance of the Ridgeline in a shorter, more compact, system,” said Stephen Graham, Senior VP of Marketing, Christensen Arms.

“This Ridgeline Scout has the same accuracy potential and dependability as our field-proven Ridgeline rifles, as they share many of the same features, technology and components.”

Ridgeline Scout Specifications

Chambering:           Barrel Length:           Twist Rate:           Overall length:
.300 BLK                           16”                          1/7                             37.5”
.223 REM                          16”                          1/8                             37.5”
6.5 CRDMR                       16”                          1/8                             37.5”
.308 WIN                           16”                         1/10                            37.5”

MSRP is $2,199.99 and you can contact your local firearms dealer to get your very own.

About Christensen Arms

Established in 1995, Christensen Arms is focused on incorporating top-tier aerospace materials and processes into production – resulting in some of the most lightweight, precise, and accurate firearms in the industry and around the globe. Always made in America, from the first prototype to the state-of-art current production models.

Christensen Arms Logo
Image courtesy of Christensen Arms.

CategoriesSkills and Gunhandling

Tactical Advantage – The Mag Life

The first thing that comes to mind when one thinks of tactical advantage is, of course, winning the fight. However, what exactly does that mean — to win? Does that mean you didn’t get shot in a gunfight, stabbed in a knife fight, or punched in a fistfight?

Choosing to engage in a violent physical encounter whether armed or unarmed, you wittingly or unwittingly accept the associated risks of incurring a recoverable injury, permanent injury, or death.

Sixth century AD Chinese general, military strategist Sun Tzu, author of ‘The Art of War,’ states “The greatest victory is that which requires no battle.” In other words, the best win over your opponent is when you never even need to step onto the battlefield.

What are some tools that you can keep in your war chest that would help you gain the tactical advantage — especially in such a way that Sun Tzu would approve; not needing to engage physically? Perceive, prepare, position.

Perceive

As opposed to finding yourself rocked back on your heels behind the action-reaction power curve, awareness is the currency that buys you time and allows you to proactively solve the tactical problem.

To not fall behind that action-reaction power curve is to monitor your environment. (Image source: stevetarini.com)

Controlling your immediate environment with your physical senses (visual, auditory, etc.,) and your awareness (perception) gains a tactical advantage in three ways.

First, it is your earliest warning system.

Alerting you at the very onset it is not possible to stay any further ahead of the power curve. By hearing it, seeing it, or sensing it coming, you end up ahead as opposed to behind the curve of an emerging physical threat.

Second, it acts as a deterrent.

When your would-be-assailants observe that you are mentally connected to your environment, they understand that you are gathering relevant information that can be used against them and that by doing this have effectively removed any element of surprise. By using your perception as a deterrent, it stops the fight before it even starts.

Lastly, but certainly not least…

…others observing your acute perception indicates to them that you are not such an easy or soft target. In fact, it both begs the question “Are there softer targets?” and provides the obvious answer “Yes.”

Prepare

Being prepared for physical combat starts in the mind. You must be mentally tougher than your adversaries. Mental toughness is the measure of individual resilience and confidence that can project success at home, at work, in competition, and under duress. It refers to any set of positive non-physical attributes that helps you to cope with the threatening situation and perform under duress and in difficult situations.

Steve Tarani teaching
You must be mentally tougher than your adversaries. (Image source: stevetarani.com)

What exactly is mental toughness?

If you ask elite military personnel, mental toughness is the ability to remain calm in extremely dangerous, or life-threatening situations and make the appropriate decisions to ensure mission success. If you ask an elite athlete, mental toughness is the ability to remain focused and perform well under stressful circumstances. If you ask the life-and-death incident survivors who escaped the impossible, many of them will tell you that mental toughness provided the willpower to get them through it.

Being prepared for physical combat also means being in good physical condition. If you were a predator searching for easy prey and you had your choice between someone who looked physically weak or incapable versus someone who appeared strong and physically able, which one would you most likely target? The one who wouldn’t appear to put up much of a fight.

Predators go for low-hanging fruit, soft targets, and easy prey. They don’t want to tangle with someone that may be tougher than them mentally and/ or physically that could possibly raise their scale of injury, put them in a hospital or in a morgue.

Position

Exploiting your perception and your preparedness affords you the opportunity to take up the most tactically sound physical position as a precursor to engaging in physical violence.

The three most tactically advantageous positions are found at higher ground, away from the fatal funnel, and in keeping your ducks in a row.

‘Higher ground’ can be applied either indoors or outdoors.

An indoor setting could mean atop a flight of stairs, a balcony, or an upper-level mezzanine — all of which give you both an elevated and dominant field of vision and, if need be, an elevated and dominant field of fire. In an outdoor setting, you can use the terrain or micro terrain such as a mound or a hilltop to gain a superior physical (positional) advantage.

Avoid the Fatal Funnel

Defensive mindset, avoid the Fatal Funnel
(Image source: Reflex Protect)

‘Fatal funnel’ is a close-quarters battle (CQB) term often used by military and law enforcement specialty teams to describe potential choke points such as doorways, stairwells, entryways, or any type of narrow area. Although specialty teams train for many hours on how to negotiate, navigate, and otherwise circumvent the fatal funnel, a general rule of thumb is to avoid those types of locations if you were to engage in physical combat.

Keep your ducks in a row.

‘Ducks in a row’ is a term referring to physically positioning yourself opposite multiple assailants. As an example, if there were two attackers and you positioned yourself in between the two of them then you would be essentially fighting a two-front war.

If, instead of being in between them, you flank one or the other of them and then line them up like ducks in a row, you’d at least have the tactical advantage of having one of them standing in between you and the other one, forcing them to first deconflict with each other prior to moving at you simultaneously which buys you the tactical currency of time and opportunity.

If you were a predator and you observed a potential target that was perceptive and effectively monitoring their environment, removing any element of surprise plus appeared to be both mentally and physically prepared and lastly moved to a superior tactical position, it would be in your best interest to seek a softer target or be willing to assume a substantially higher risk.

In a police interview with an apprehended felon, an investigator asked the perpetrator why he didn’t engage the arresting officer when he clearly had the capability and opportunity. His response was “Well, I thought about it for a second, but he really looked dialed in, kept changing position and I could tell that he was well trained, so I didn’t think I could beat him.” The officer held the upper hand. Utilizing one or more of these tools; perception, preparation, and position, can afford you a similar tactical advantage.

CategoriesNew Gun Releases

High Speed Gear Releases the New Navigator Tech Pouch HL

High Speed Gear recently released their newest pouch, the Navigator Tech Pouch-HL. It’s $64.00 and there are seven colors to choose from.

The Navigator Tech Pouch “unfolds and suspends at a 90-degree angle.” (image courtesy of High Speed Gear)

Here’s more from High Speed Gear about the Navigator Pouch.

This compact admin pouch is designed to hold and provide easy access to most smart phones, with or without protective cases, for use with navigational apps. When opened, the lower flap is suspended at a 90-degree angle for quick viewing. The phone harness is adjustable and detachable, enabling the user to separate their phone from the pouch without removing the harness. The Navigator also features a storage compartment and two loops for compact battery packs, notebooks, pens, cable management and more.

Navigator Tech Pouch from High Speed Gear
The Navigator Tech Pouch-HL. (Image courtesy of High Speed Gear)

• Enables hands-free viewing of a smart phone or similar device
• Adjustable phone harness fits most smart phones, including large, “plus”-style devices in rugged cases (fits devices/cases as large as 7” x 3.5” x 0.75”)
• Internal pocket accommodates a compact power-bank battery, notebook or other admin items
• Features loops for pens or charging cable management
• The Navigator Tech Pouch-MOLLE has a toggle closure, which allows silent opening and snap for extra closure security when needed
• The Navigator Tech Pouch-HL features hook and loop for secure closure
• External flap features hook and loop fastener to secure flap when pouch is open
• MOLLE version includes HSGI® Clips for attachment to MOLLE or PALS

Side view of Navigator Tech Pouch
Side view of the Navigator Tech Pouch. (Image courtesy of High Speed Gear)

Navigator Tech Pouch Specifications

• Dimensions: 7”L x 1.5”W x 3.75”H, .25 lbs
• Metric: 17.78cm x 3.81cm x 9.52cm, 113.4 g

About High Speed Gear, in their own words.

High Speed Gear is dedicated to building the best 100% American-made, battle-proven tactical gear. HSGI started as a custom shop in 1999, making gear for Marines at Camp Lejeune. Since then, the company has grown to be the largest full-time employer in Swansboro, N.C., with distinct and innovative products like the TACO and the Sure-Grip Padded Belt. Our products are designed for the highest level of comfort, functionality, and versatility. Satisfaction is guaranteed for all of our customers, whether military, law enforcement or responsibly armed citizens. Our products are user driven and are designed based on the operational experiences of a wide variety of end users.

CategoriesNew Gun Releases

The Ridgeline Scout: Christensen Arms “Scout Rifle”

The Ridgeline Scout is Christensen Arms’ take on the Scout Rifle concept. True to that sort of weapon’s intended design, they say it’s a rifle created for “…situations that require a light-weight, compact firearm such as hunting from a ground blind, tree-stand, or possible use as a truck gun.” 

Initial versions available are chambered in .300 BLK, .223 RENM, 6.5 CRDMR, and .308 WIN. All have a barrel length of 16 in., though the twist rate necessarily differs. 

Suppressed Ridgeline Scout Rifle

Stephen Graham, Christensen Arms Senior VP of Marketing, says, 

We are excited to add the new Ridgeline Scout rifle to the Ridgeline series. The intent was to offer shooters the same familiarity and performance of the Ridgeline in a shorter, more compact, system/ This Ridgeline Scout has the same accuracy potential and dependability as our field-proven Ridgeline rifles, as they share many of the same features, technology, and components.”

Christensen Arms Ridgeline Scout Rifle

Here’s the rest of what we know from the release. 

Christensen Arms Ridgeline Scout Rifle

Building upon the ever-popular Christensen Arms Ridgeline series), the Ridgeline Scout is a purpose-built, bolt-action rifle chassis that combines all the best features of the Ridgeline into a new compact scout rifle. Specialized features include a Black-Nitride® coated action, 0-MOA optic rail, barricade stop, a 10-rd AICS drop-box magazine, and a flat-shoe Trigger Tech® trigger, all on a tan and black carbon fiber composite Sporter stock.

Weighing in at just 5.9 lbs., the Ridgeline Scout is available in four calibers all with a 16” muzzle-threaded barrel creating an ideal suppressor host. Most Ridgeline Scout rifles are backed by the Christensen Arms Sub-MOA Guarantee.

Close-up of AICS magazine in a Christensen Arms scout rifle.
Need AICS mags?

Ridgeline Scout Specifications

Chambering:                      Barrel Length:                  Twist Rate:                  Overall length:

.300 BLK                                 16”                                    1/7                               37.5”

.223 REM                                16”                                    1/8                               37.5”

 6.5 CRDMR                            16”                                    1/8                               37.5”

.308 WIN                                 16”                                   1/10                              37.5”         

 

Learn more here. 

 

Using a Christensen Arms Scout Rifle as a truck gun.

 

ALSO. Should you decide that you need one of these, Christensen Arms suggests the following steps to properly break in your barrel.

 

Ridgeline Scout Barrel Break-In 

Proper barrel break-in will smooth the bore of your barrel to create better consistency and accuracy. With today’s demand for accuracy, most high-quality barrel makers lap their barrels to remove minor tooling marks and create as uniform a finish as possible. This is generally done when the barrel is at the “blank” stage before the barrel has been contoured, crowned, and chambered. While this lapping technique provides great results, the post-lapping machining during the chambering process adds additional tooling marks. However it is possible to lap the barrel after the chambering process, it is very difficult and can damage the throat or create uneven gas venting behind the bullet which can lead to poor accuracy. Live fire barrel break-in can minimize these potential problems and is much more fun!

Proper barrel break-in consists of a series of shooting and cleaning sequences. Although many different break-in sequences exist, the following has been developed over the last 15 years, and is very simple, and has given excellent results.

First, make sure that the barrel is clean and free of any oil or solvents from the manufacturing process. Once clear, fire 2 three-shot groups.

With the bore guide inserted, run a solvent-soaked patch through the barrel, breach to muzzle, removing it at the muzzle. Repeat this with a new soaked patch 3 times or until no black is showing on the patch. Then scrub the barrel back and forth using the caliber-correct nylon brush soaked with solvent. Ensure the brush completely exits the muzzle and chamber before reversing direction. Repeat 20 times for a total of 40 passes through the barrel. Follow this step with a dry patch until it comes out clean and dry.

Next, using the undersized brush, run a solvent-soaked patch through the barrel, scrubbing back and forth for a total of 20 passes through the barrel. Again, ensure the patch exits both ends of the barrel before reversing direction. You will notice a blue tint on the patches from dissolving copper residue. Repeat until no blue/copper residue is found. Follow with dry patches until they come out clean and dry

Fire another 2 three-round groups for a total of 6 rounds.

Repeat steps 1-4 until you have fired a total of 50 rounds. 50 rounds are usually sufficient to smooth out the surface of the barrel lining and “break-in” your barrel. As your barrel breaks in, you will notice that it will clean faster and without using as many cleaning patches or solvents.

Ridgeline-Scout-Rifle-Christensen-Arms

CategoriesGun Reviews

Brownells BRN-180 Breathes New Life into a Classic Firearm: Armalite’s AR 180 Updated for the 21st Century

My personal experience with the AR-180 started about 30-years ago. I saw one on a wall in my local gun shop and was intrigued. I knew its price was probably a little out of my reach but I asked about it anyway. The clerk quoted me the wrong (as in much lower) price and I walked out the door with my new-to-me rifle.

It was a decent rifle that was like a combination between the AK-47 and the M16/AR platform and had a side-folding stock.

Originally, it was designed as a select-fire military weapon known as the AR-18 intended for countries that could not afford to forge M16 receivers because folded and welded sheet metal receivers were cheaper to produce. Interestingly enough, the AR-18 was never adopted by any military throughout the world. It would go on to influence other designs and its civilian semiautomatic-only version known as the AR-180 would be more familiar to most shooters.

BRN-180
If the original AR-180 or AR-18, if you prefer, was manufactured like the BN-180 it might have made actual inroads with regard to military service beyond a handful of third world countries.

The AR-180 was made by Armalite of Costa Mesa, California, and under license by Howa of Japan and Sterling of England. Its greatest claim to fame would be its use in the 1984 movie, The Terminator, wielded on-screen by Arnold Schwarzenegger.

Arnold Schwarzennegger with an AR-18 in the film The Terminator
The Terminator carries his AR-18 at the ready. (Credit: imfdb.org)

While I liked the light recoil, available carrier, and side-folding stock, the rifle was not as accurate as my AR. The main problem I had with it was the proprietary magazines. I only had one and as the rifle was out of production, factory magazines were non-existent. Ram-Line (aka Jam-Line) offered a magazine that was compatible with the AR-180, AR-15, and Ruger Mini-14 and it was abysmal in all 3 with regard to reliability.

I sold the rifle off during the period in which US citizens lived under an oppressive and noxious piece of legislation known as the Federal Assault Weapon Ban for nearly 4X what I paid for it. I liked it enough that it would stay somewhat on my radar. That is, if I were to find another at a reasonable price with a stash of magazines, or if someone would improve the rifle by allowing it to use standard STANAG AR-15 type magazines.

Roughly 25 years later, my prayers would be answered by Brownells when they rolled out their AR-180. To be fair the company which took on the name Armalite (Eagle Arms) did produce aversion known as the AR-180B between 2001 and 2007. It used a molded polymer lower receiver and the rifle took standard AR-15 magazines. Unfortunately, it did not prove to be a popular seller.

Brownells makes good guns better

If there was any company that could pull off a correct redesign of the AR-180, it was Brownells with their BRN-180 design. The original Armalite version had crude sights and a wonky scope with a mount. Brownells solved this issue by adding a Picatinny rail to the top of the upper receiver so the shooter could add whatever sight or scope option they preferred.

BRN-180
I have no idea who made this stock, but it is similar to the original AR-180’s albeit better plastic/polymer.

Like the original, the charging handle is side-mounted and reciprocating. As it extends from the right side of the receiver, shooters should not have the locking hardware on that side for their mount as it could be problematic. The rear of the upper receiver is sealed and there is no way for the gas to vent or bleed through the upper as it would on an AR-15. This makes the BRN-180 a good candidate for suppression without the use of an automotive silicone sealant, oversized charging handle, etc.

BRN-180 charging handle
The BRN-180 features a reciprocating charging handle stays up and out of the way like the original.
Closeup of the BRN-180 controls
Controls on the BRN-180 are very similar to the AR-15.

The barrel on this build is a standard 16” version made from 4150 carbon steel with a 1:8 twist to the rifling. It is chambered in 223 Wylde, allowing the use of both 5.56 NATO and 223 Remington ammunition safely. The barrel is threaded ½ x 28 and features a three-prong flash suppressor like the original.

If you want to remove the factory muzzle device, it is secured with a jam nut. You will need to rotate this nut counter-clockwise (toward the receiver) and then the flash suppressor will turn off correctly.

Should you want to add a silencer, there is another important step. On the 16” and 18” versions, the piston cup will need to be swapped out to run the rifle suppressed. The10.5” version is equipped with an adjustable gas block and the rifle-length versions may be shipping that way as of this writing, but this version needed the change.

Detailed instructions are given for this procedure, but you will most likely need a solid rubber mallet to beat the handguard off the rifle because it did not move easily at all for me. Once removed I mounted a SilencerCo Saker in order to run this rifle suppressed.

BRN-180 scoped and suppressed
Scoped and suppressed with the ability to fold the stock into a compact size makes the BRN-180 one hell of a weapon.

Brownells initially offered the upper receiver of the BRN-180 as being able to be mounted on any mil-spec AR lower receiver. The only problem with that is the cost of adapters if you want to take advantage of using a side-folding stock. A Sig Sauer MCX lower should host the BRN-180 upper but as of this writing, that has never been available from Sig as a stand-alone item.

BRN-180 left profile with folded stock
Unlike an AR-15 with a LAW adapter, you can fire the BRN-180 with the stock folded.
BRN-180 right profile with folded stock
Like an AK-47, you can shoot the BRN-180 with the stock folded.

Fortunately, Brownells came to the rescue by releasing a BRN-180 lower receiver a while back. Completing one is on par with assembling an AR lower, with two notable exceptions: the threaded pin for the bolt catch and no need to install the buffer tube/receiver extension, etc.

I used a standard lower parts kit with a few upgrades including a Geissele Maritime bolt catch, Blackhawk Industries pistol grip, a tan Seekins Precision magazine release, and a CMC trigger.

The rear of the lower receiver has an M1913 Picatinny rail to attach a stock or brace and I went with Sig’s excellent aluminum side folder. Unlike an AR, you can fire this rifle with the stock folded if you choose.

With the BRN-180 completed to this point, I marveled at how much better the new version was. The look of the forgings was superior to the old stamped sheet metal of the original. The aluminum stock and forend were light years ahead of the old plastic furniture developed in the 1960s and most importantly, there is a near-endless supply of magazines out there.

BRN-180 pistol build
The 10.5” bbl version of the BRN-180 makes for a good braced pistol or SBR.

BRN-180 Accessories

I decided on a Sun Optics USA low-powered variable optic for this build. The Mantis is a 1-6X24 LPVO with an illuminated reticle and a Weaver tactical cantilever mount with wing nut mounting screws on the left-hand side. There are several illumination settings and the reticle resembles a horseshoe with a rangefinder off to the side.

BRN-180 extended scope mounting screws
If you have extended scope mounting screws, be sure to place them on the left side of the rifle so they do not interfere with the charging handle.

Additional accessories included a nylon suppressor cover to wrap the rear of the handguard and a Mid-Evil Industries 360 degree vertical foregrip. Off to the 6 o’clock position I mounted a Streamlight equipped with a Fire-Tail.

Fire Tail flashlight attachment
The Fire-Tail flashlight attachment is a quick, clean and effective solution to the tape switch problem.

The Fire-Tail attaches to the body of a handheld 1” diameter flashlight with a push-button tail cap. The activation arm rests against the push button itself. It is especially useful for mounting lights on rifles on the opposite side of your support hand without having to use a remote switch.

At the range

Being that we are still in the midst of an ammunition shortage, I did not have the opportunity to do a 1,000+ round torture test but was able to shoot 200 rounds in one session with a later session of 300 rounds.

BRN-180 with suppressor cover over the handguard
I found a cheap suppressor cover makes for an excellent way to deal with a hot metal hand guard for extended shooting sessions.

The rifle functioned flawlessly with a variety of magazines between GI and PMAGs. Felt recoil is about on par with a typical AR-15. The twin carrier springs are more than sufficient.

BRN-180 with ATI Schmeisser 60-round magazine
The ATI Schmeisser 60-round magazine is a great way to maximize the BRN-180’s potential.

As far as suppression with the SilencerCo Saker goes: the can meters at about 136 decibels. The SilencerCo crew chose Stellite for the baffles and stainless steel for the body of this unique can. Even though small in stature, its durability is never a question, and its 14.2-ounce weight and 5.5” length simply screams maneuverability. The sealed rear of the upper receiver made it downright pleasant from a gas perspective.

With regard to accuracy, the first session was ringing steel at various distances and the report from the steel was louder than the actual shots fired it seemed. Flat range time in the second session was devoted to accuracy and 1.5 to 2.2” at 100 yards seemed to be the average from the bench using range bags. A bipod or tripod might have helped improve this.

Brownells now offers the BRN-180 in 300 Blackout and if you want a piston-driven rifle in either 300 Blackout or 5.56 NATO caliber this is a good way to achieve that without going the typical AR route.

left profile view with cover on the handguard
The BRN-180 is an effective and capable rifle.

The AR-180 may have seen like a niche firearm when black rifles were more of a novelty act in the 1980s, but Brownells managed to bring this one back to life with some very much needed improvements.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The post Brownells BRN-180 Breathes New Life into a Classic Firearm: Armalite’s AR 180 Updated for the 21st Century appeared first on The Mag Life.

CategoriesNew Gun Releases

SilencerCo Adds Hybrid 46M to Their Product Line

SilencerCo recently announced the addition of their Hybrid 46M rifle suppressor to their line of products. They say it’s the world’s first modular large-bore suppressor.

Photo courtesy of SilencerCo. The new Hybrid 46M.

Here’s what they had to say:

It is the natural evolution of the original large bore suppressor, SilencerCo’s Hybrid 46, with the added benefit of being modular, giving shooters the option of using it in either a short or long configuration. The Hybrid 46M and all other SilencerCo products are available at SilencerCo Retailers.

Effectively reducing the sound signature of everything from 9mm to 10mm and 5.56 NATO to .458 SOCOM, the Hybrid 46M takes it to the next level for those who want the versatility of the Hybrid 46 with added modularity. It is compatible with virtually every centerfire firearm platform due to its wide range of available attachment accessories.

The Hybrid 46M is the perfect tool for shooters hoping to suppress a variety of calibers on both pistols and rifles with only one suppressor,” said Dewie Vieira, SilencerCo’s Senior Product Development Specialist. “It’s the first modular big bore suppressor ever; it’s the answer for those who want to suppress every small and large bore caliber.”

The real beauty of the Hybrid 46M, however, is that it allows the shooter to remove the front module, providing a shorter and lighter option that is especially useful on handguns. While SilencerCo’s Omega 36M is still the best modular option for .30 caliber pistols, the Hybrid 46M gives shooters the ability to suppress big bore pistol calibers like 45 Auto and 10MM.

Modular large-bore suppressor, SilencerCo Hybrid 46M action shot
“It’s the first modular big bore suppressor ever; it’s the answer for those who want to suppress every small and large bore caliber.” (Photo courtesy of SilencerCo.)

Product Overview

The Hybrid 46M is a light, compact, modular centerfire rifle suppressor, with the versatility to use on magnum rifles, pistols, and subguns. Both configurations are full-auto rated.

The Hybrid 46M is rated for all centerfire pistol and rifle calibers including 45 Auto, 10MM, .450 Bushmaster, .458 SOCOM, .45-70, .338 LM and up to .460 Weatherby Magnum.

SilencerCo Hybrid 46M large bore suppressor in long and short configurations.
The front module is removable,  providing a shorter and lighter option that is especially useful on handguns. (Photo: SilencerCo)

Hybrid 46M Tech Specs

  • Caliber Compatibility 9MM to 45 ACP / 5.56 NATO to 45–70 GOV & up to 338 LM
  • Total Length 5.78–9.0″
  • Weight 12.2 – 19.9 oz
  • Diameter 1.57″
  • ​Muzzle Average 128.9 dB and up
  • Finish Black Cerakote
  • MSRP $1,117

Interested in one of your very own? Here’s what you need to know.

About SilencerCo

SilencerCo, based in West Valley, UT is the nation’s leading designer and manufacturer of suppressors. Since our birth in 2008, our dedication to authenticity and innovation has never wavered. Today, we continue to focus on exceptional customer service and industry-leading products; products that are crafted by people with the utmost dedication to our industry. We are hunters, shooters, and gun enthusiasts, just like you. Our innovative and forward-thinking approach has allowed us to give the firearms industry what many said was impossible. This is what drives us to be better—to be the best. Because you—the shooter, the hunter, the Second Amendment lover—deserve the best.

More about SilencerCo.

CategoriesNew Gun Releases

AICS PMAG: the PMAG 10 5.56 AC for Bolt Guns

The PMAG 10 5.56 AC (as in AICS style) magazine has been presented by Magpul Industries as a solution to feeding small cartridge case diameters in rifles with AICS-pattern metal mags. Such calibers in that style of magazine can be problematic. 

We have a handy video that explains. It’s hosted by the spring-fed mag cousin of the TVA’s Miss Minutes and should answer any of your basic questions. 

 

 

PMAG 10 AC 5.56

 

Magpul explains the difficulties in more detail thusly:

“The problem with designing a detachable mag for 223 Remington in 5.56 x 45 bolt action rifles with AICS pattern bottom metal is that with small cartridge case diameters and standard bold faces, there is not a lot of room to get the geometry right.

In a conventional magazine design, this can lead to bolt over stoppages, overall length sensitivities, follow or dive, and a generally less than great experience than when feeding larger cartridges.

Magpul’s PMAG 10 5.56 AC solves this little dilemma with a polymer magazine designed for short action AICS pattern bottom metal in cartridges built on a .378 case head, and an overall length of 2.39 in. We based our solution on an offset feed lip geometry that maximizes bolt face engagement and resists follow or dive, guaranteeing reliable feeding in solving pesky bolt face overlap issues.

The PMAG 10 5.56 AC shares many features with its larger siblings in the PMAG line, with the same DNA that makes our GEN M3 PMAG  the most reliable, and most durable magazines in the world…with a unique form factor so you won’t easily mix them up with your other AICS pattern mags.

Compatible with all short action AICS pattern bottom metal, including our own bolt action magwells for the hunter family of stocks. The PMAG 10 5.56 AC sets a new standard for bolt action standard technology.”

 

Looking for the Magpul PMAG 10 AICS Short Action in 7.62?

 

PMAG 10 5.56 AC – AICS Short Action

This is the formal description provided by Richard Fitzpatrick‘s crew.

The PMAG 10 5.56 AC is a polymer 5.56×45 NATO (.223 Remington) magazine designed for short action Accuracy International Chassis Systems (AICS) pattern bottom metal, including the Bolt Action Magazine Well for the Magpul Hunter family of stocks. 

Designed with many of the same qualities that make our PMAGS the most reliable and durable in the world, the PMAG 10 5.56 AC features GEN M3 technology, including a self-lubricating follower, a stainless-steel spring, and constant-curve internal geometry for smooth feeding. It also incorporates offset feed lip geometry that maximizes bolt face engagement, guaranteeing reliable feeding and solving the bolt face issue common to other AICS-pattern magazines for 5.56 based cartridges.

Like our other Magpul bolt action magazines, it features a paint-pen dot matrix for visual identification and a flared base plate for positive control and ease of retrieval. Designed from the ground up to solve the challenges of feeding 5.56/.223, the PMAG 10 5.56 AC sets the standard for bolt action magazine technology.

Made in the USA.

 

PMAG 10 AC 5.56

AICS PMAG 10 Specs

 

More Information
Caliber 5.56 x 45
Platform Bolt Action
Capacity 10
Weight 2.71 oz.
Height, max 5.01 in.
Length, max 3.05 in.
Other Specs
  • Width: 0.97 in. Top, 0.88 in. Base
  • Compatible with short action AICS-pattern bottom metal and 5.56×45 NATO/.223 Remington cartridges
  • Accepts cartridge overall length (COAL) of up to 2.39 in.
  • Use with other calibers such as .300 AAC Blackout is not recommended
  • Due to the feed geometry dictated by the .223 Remington cartridge and the Ruger American overall receiver length, this magazine is not recommended for use in the Ruger American rifle. While it will be possible to insert the magazine into Ruger American rifles that accept AICS-pattern magazines, function and reliability may be heavily compromised.

CategoriesNew Gun Releases

AICS PMAG: the PMAG 10 5.56 AC for Bolt Guns

The PMAG 10 5.56 AC (as in AICS style) magazine has been presented by Magpul Industries as a solution to feeding small cartridge case diameters in rifles with AICS-pattern metal mags. Such calibers in that style of magazine can be problematic. 

We have a handy video that explains. It’s hosted by the spring-fed mag cousin of the TVA’s Miss Minutes and should answer any of your basic questions. 

 

 

Magpul explains the difficulties in more detail thusly:

“The problem with designing a detachable mag for 223 Remington in 5.56 x 45 bolt action rifles with AICS pattern bottom metal is that with small cartridge case diameters and standard bold faces, there is not a lot of room to get the geometry right.

In a conventional magazine design, this can lead to bolt over stoppages, overall length sensitivities, follow or dive, and a generally less than great experience than when feeding larger cartridges.

Magpul’s PMAG 10 5.56 AC solves this little dilemma with a polymer magazine designed for short action AICS pattern bottom metal in cartridges built on a .378 case head, and an overall length of 2.39 in. We based our solution on an offset feed lip geometry that maximizes bolt face engagement and resists follow or dive, guaranteeing reliable feeding in solving pesky bolt face overlap issues.

The PMAG 10 5.56 AC shares many features with its larger siblings in the PMAG line, with the same DNA that makes our GEN M3 PMAG  the most reliable, and most durable magazines in the world…with a unique form factor so you won’t easily mix them up with your other AICS pattern mags.

Compatible with all short action AICS pattern bottom metal, including our own bolt action magwells for the hunter family of stocks. The PMAG 10 5.56 AC sets a new standard for bolt action standard technology.”

 

Looking for the Magpul PMAG 10 AICS Short Action in 7.62?

 

PMAG 10 5.56 AC – AICS Short Action

This is the formal description provided by Richard Fitzpatrick‘s crew.

The PMAG 10 5.56 AC is a polymer 5.56×45 NATO (.223 Remington) magazine designed for short action Accuracy International Chassis Systems (AICS) pattern bottom metal, including the Bolt Action Magazine Well for the Magpul Hunter family of stocks. 

Designed with many of the same qualities that make our PMAGS the most reliable and durable in the world, the PMAG 10 5.56 AC features GEN M3 technology, including a self-lubricating follower, a stainless-steel spring, and constant-curve internal geometry for smooth feeding. It also incorporates offset feed lip geometry that maximizes bolt face engagement, guaranteeing reliable feeding and solving the bolt face issue common to other AICS-pattern magazines for 5.56 based cartridges.

Like our other Magpul bolt action magazines, it features a paint-pen dot matrix for visual identification and a flared base plate for positive control and ease of retrieval. Designed from the ground up to solve the challenges of feeding 5.56/.223, the PMAG 10 5.56 AC sets the standard for bolt action magazine technology.

Made in the USA.

 

 

AICS PMAG 10 Specs

 

More Information
Caliber 5.56 x 45
Platform Bolt Action
Capacity 10
Weight 2.71 oz.
Height, max 5.01 in.
Length, max 3.05 in.
Other Specs
  • Width: 0.97 in. Top, 0.88 in. Base
  • Compatible with short action AICS-pattern bottom metal and 5.56×45 NATO/.223 Remington cartridges
  • Accepts cartridge overall length (COAL) of up to 2.39 in.
  • Use with other calibers such as .300 AAC Blackout is not recommended
  • Due to the feed geometry dictated by the .223 Remington cartridge and the Ruger American overall receiver length, this magazine is not recommended for use in the Ruger American rifle. While it will be possible to insert the magazine into Ruger American rifles that accept AICS-pattern magazines, function and reliability may be heavily compromised.

CategoriesRange Gear

Men’s Gore-Tex Infinium Anything Cargo Pant

If you have a medium bit of cash lying around you may wish to check out these new 686 pants. Actually, they’re not totally new, they are an upgrade of the 686 Anything Cargo Pant. The company says they upgraded the pants with “GORE Infinium fabric with WINDSTOPPER enabling Technology, YKK Aquaguard Waterproof Zippers, stretch gusset and back yoke, 3M reflective inner taping, and a new Snap Hem Adjustment.”

These upgraded 686 pants feature an Innie + Outie Lacing System, a snap hem adjustment around the ankles, and intelligently designed pockets for your gear.

Many reviewers seem to love the breathability and these were highly praised for being great in rain and wind conditions. They also mention the pockets often using happy words to describe them, because there are so many of them and they don’t make the wearer look bulky. 

What makes these 686 pants stand out?

Lightweight
As easy to pack as it is comfortable to wear.

Water-Resistant
Designed to resist light rain and snow, which means light rain beads off and rolls off, so you stay comfortable.

Breathable
Moisture from sweat vapor can easily escape through the innovative membrane, so your body’s microclimate stays balanced.

Windproof
Don’t-even-need-to-worry-about-it, windproof. When an icy wind picks up and you™re miles from home, that’s exactly what you should be relying on.

Modern Fit – Made to move. A regular fit through the waist, seat and thigh with a highly articulated leg.

Men’s Gore-Tex Infinium Anything Cargo Pant Specs

686 pants - Mens Anything Cargo pants
686 pants – Men’s Anything Cargo pants

More Specs

GORE-TEX 2L 100% Polyester Fabric with Windstopper Technology

Fabric Makeup: 100% Polyester Fabric with GORE-TEX Windstopper Membrane + PFCEC Free DWR w/ Durable 92%

Nylon/8% Spandex + DWR Stretch Fabric Panels

Water Resistant

Windproof

Packable

  • Non-Taped Seams For Added Breathability
  • PFCEC Free DWR (Durable Water Repellency) Water & Stain Resistant Finish
  • 13 Pocket Design
  • Innie + Outie Waist Drawcord (Drawcord Ends Adjust Inside or Outside the Waistband)
  • Dual Side Integrated Zippered Cargo Pockets with Leg Venting
  • Dual ID Card + Pen Pocket
  • Mobile Phone Pocket
  • Secure Velcro Back Pockets with Internal Card Pockets
  • Belt Loop Stash Pocket
  • RFID Blocking Pocket to Protect Your Credit Cards
  • Snap Cuff Adjustment
  • Key Ring Eyelet on Belt Loop
  • Stretch Nylon Crotch Gusset and Yoke Panels for Added Mobility
  • Reinforced Buttonhole
  • Reinforced Pocket Openings
  • Articulated Knees
  • Signature Red Internal Cuff Chain Stitching
  • UPF (Ultraviolet Protection Factor) 40+
  • All Seams Sewn with Durable Duracore Thread

X
Add to cart