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TTAG commentator Freddie Serna posted this underneath SHOT Show Snaps: Red Jacket Firearms and R. Lee Ermey. We’ve lifted it from that post and republished it here with Mr. Serna’s permission.

“You can do what I did to show how irresponsible and dangerous Red Jacket Firearms and the Discovery Channel are. I introduced the Sons of Guns episode “Blanks Prank” [above] to our executive officers and safety department. They were very impressed with the safety aspects that Will Hayden was conveying. They were so impressed that they do not plan on doing any business with Red Jacket Firearms. I work for the nuclear plant in Arizona and we have quite a large number of former military personnel as well as former police officers in our security department . . .

We also exchange information (good or bad) with the other nuclear plants in the U.S. and abroad. Generally INPO 1 plants set the standards for the other nuclear plants. What the best practiced plants do the others follow suit especially if it involves nuclear or industrial safety. Wall Street and insurance companies also look very closely on the involvement of companies when it involves safety. The companies stocks and insurance rates are dictated by how much a company gets involved with safety. OSHA also has their hands deep into everything when it comes to safety.

So if you work for a company that has any type of security department that uses or has plans to acquire AR15/M4 based weapons or any weapons for that matter introduce them to the Sons of Guns “Blanks Prank” video. A simple e-mail is all it takes. Most company execs will find it appalling and will not authorize any funds toward acquiring RJF products.

Does it matter to Will Hayden, Red Jacket Firearms or the Discovery Channel? IDK. I would guess that it probably doesn’t as long as they continue to have a big fan base. But you can only do what you can do.”

65 Responses to Red Jacket Firearms Safety Sucks

      • Information is sketchy on the whole story. They claim that the half dozen missing firearms were basically ones tossed in the trash due to mistakes made on them. From what I’ve gathered from previous research is that in order to keep the business open while not personally being allowed to have an FFL license, Will and his daughter basically split up ownership with some other employees. Vince, I believe, was one of them, and I think that is a big part of all the drama with him in the show. This story was of course not told. He had a lot of added pressure and stress with the added responsibilities of being in charge on paper while not really being the boss, and at the same time had a baby on the way. Meanwhile Chris just seems like an incompetent drama ridden fool who eloped with the bosses daughter after she got divorced. I don’t think Vince is quite the devil the editing and producing of Discovery Channel makes him out to be. I’m interested to know the full story and if known I’d bet the opinion that the producers have laid out about Vince would be different.

        • Agree. Before the “blow-up” Vince was the only FFL on record and in charge of the Red Jacket Firearms LLC (gun mfg business), owned by the over-all Red Jacket International. After Vince, they assigned like 3 FFL holders as managing members in the Firearms LLC (Kris, Charlie and Joe -but this has been updated to just Joe and Charlie recently). Joe is now COO of the firearms side from what I understand.

        • Kris is not an FFL holder and has never been an officer of RJF. The officers were Vince, Joe, and Charlie, with Vince being the principal. Last I checked–a month or two ago–Vince was still on the registration, although he had announced that he filed the paperwork to remove himself from the registry.

  1. They did due to lost “Machine Guns”

    But what was published is that another gentlemen of the company was able to go and get his class 3 and FFl licnese, which is how they stay in business.

    • Actually, Class 3 applies to dealers; Since the business in question is a manufacturer, they likely have an 07 Manufacturer license, which then requires a Class 2 SOT.

      Basically, there are three kinds of operations: Importers, Manufacturers, and Dealers; each has their own specific Special Occupational Tax (SOT) to work with NFA items. Importers require Class 1, Manufacturers require Class 2, and Dealers require Class 3.

  2. So? They’re blanks. We shoot them at each other all the time when we’re in the military. Heck, is the old dude even pointing the gun at the younger ones or is this more TV goofiness?

    • And as we were told in the military, even with a BFA partially blocking the gasses, the expelled gas from a blank has enough pressure and heat at close range to cause serious damage if he does have it at close range.

      Even if he does not have it pointed at them, you must consider the potential for hearing loss from firing a full-auto weapon in an enclosed area near people without hearing protection. Blanks are loud.

      • Stupid? Ya. Would I do it? No. But it’s an expensive, loud cap gun at this point. And did he actually point it anywhere? I’m guessing that’s why they didn’t show him pointing it at the two other dudes across the room at the workbench.

        • It’s just a show…and there are no damage done due to the prank. Will obviously understood the danger and acted within the safety boundaries…note that he was on the other side of the shop and he didn’t burst directly at Kris and Vince (or at least the footage didn’t show it). The guy was a marine and a gunsmith, i doubt he would goof off if he didn’t think it was safe. Plus, he also warned the viewer that he was goofing off safely due to the precautions taken.

        • H. Lee says:
          September 7, 2012 at 04:55
          …”The guy was a marine and a gunsmith,”…

          The RJF Marine states that he was a Marine that worked in flight line operations aka “windshield washer on helicopters.” Just because someone was in the Marines does NOT make them an expert on firearms and safety. If you look up http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mmYv7ZgLjuI you will find the Marine from RJF makes a statement, “Why? Just shoot left handed it was good enough for the Marines for 200 years.” I’m not sure where the RJF Marine in the video served as a Marine but we had left handed Marines shooting right handed M16’s (AR-15) in the U.S. Marines when I was in 1976-1982. The Marine in the RJF video stated he served in the early 80’s. IDK maybe he meant 1880’s. As for being a gunsmith I would like to know where he received his training. Washing helicopter windshields doesn’t make one a gunsmith or firearm expert. Just because someone opens a gun shop doesn’t make them a gun expert either. I’ve been to many gun shops and have found their knowledge to be less than exceptional.

          If you check out some of the firearm forums you will find that this show is considered comical and dangerous.

      • Who said blanks are not a problem. I quote – – – –
        “Brandon Lee died of a fatal gunshot wound on March 31, 1993 after an accidental shooting on set of The Crow where a blank bullet was used during a scene, which fired a fragment of a real bullet that was lodged in the barrel. Lee was rushed to the New Hanover Regional Medical Center in Wilmington, NC where he underwent 6 hours of surgery. However, attempts to save him were unsuccessful, and Lee was pronounced dead at 1:03pm on March 31, 1993 at 28 years old. The shooting was ruled an accident.” http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brandon_Lee

    • It’s funny …

      If you’re still in junior high. So is a brown paper bag, a can of lighter fluid and some fresh canine bowel-movement on Halloween.

    • It is horseplay with firearms, for the whole world to see. I enjoyed watching the series until this episode, but lost interest after being creeped out by this.

  3. In the original Red Jacket post, a lot of the earlier replies had to do with the perception that folks at Red Jacket did not practice good safety. And this being on television, I think most of us would want safety to be RULE #1 ALL the TIME. The hick hillbilly attitude may make for good television, but it also feeds into the stereotype that ALL gunowners, gunstores, gun manufacturers are not safe to be around. John and Jane Homeowner stumble on this show some night and they are most likely NOT going to be enchanted with new knowledge about firearms, not going to think about “hey this might be something we can do for fun/self defence/competition”, etc. At least Top Shot shows shooting as a fun thing and they do put more emphasis on safety. And even though they too have occassionally “muzzled” folks at the range, they haven’t actually shot at one another except with paint balls.

  4. I get the safety rules but when start applying them to things that aren’t workable guns, it seems pretty stupid. If I’m not sure something is a firearm and it looks like one, I’ll assume it is. But a gun that can’t fire real bullets doesn’t seem to qualify. Are we going to apply these rules to airsoft (that’d kind of limit force on force training) or water pistols. “You’re trigger discipline on that super soaker needs work!

  5. As long as he did not point the blank at anyone, whats the big deal?

    Its like setting off a firecracker next to an unsuspecting person. I’m all for safety, but talk about some snobbish gun owners.

    • “As long as he did not point the blank at anyone, whats the big deal?

      Its like setting off a firecracker next to an unsuspecting person.”

      It’s like,

      not funny.

    • This TTAG guy just wants his 15 minutes of fame. Blanks in a movie prop gun is not going to kill anyone. Some people just can’t stand the fact that someone else has made something from an idea and had it become succesful. Its called jealously folks.

  6. People need to lighten up. Its a tv show and they do this for a living. They were using blanks same as every other show and movie.

    • In every other show the actors sign up for it and probably take precautions like wearing ear plugs. A movie set is also cleared of all real firearms so there
      is no confusion of picking up a real gun.

      The real problem is both the image it creates of gun owners and the teaching
      exactly the opposite of safe gun practices. It only hurts our cause.

  7. While I agree that shop and range safety are absolutely important, and that the “blank prank” vid is example of not being shop safe, it does not appear to show itself in the quality of the work they do.

    I think the “gov-ment” contract angle they were going for was just show material, as I don’t expect their M4 is that much better than anyone elses, especially the pain with which it appears to have been put together (a project to make an M4…really?).

    Would I go to them for safety classes? No. Would I buy guns from them. Sure.

  8. They did an episode and discussed the safety measures they take in the show. Safety looked more impressive than ranges I have visited. And another thing it’s a damn TV show.

  9. What some of you guys need to do is make sure YOUR gun safety is squared away on an ongoing basis and not worry about some Good Ole Boys from Louisiana on television.

  10. Red Jacket has a couple of original designs, but then again, so do most companies.

    They sell price inflated garbage to morons who don’t know any better: They’re a laughing stock.

    Anyone own or has any one ever seen a Red Jacket gun? Their machining is not too good on an AK of theirs I recently saw. And with the prices they’re demanding, it was very, very clear to me that the customer would have been better off with an Arsenal AK and would have payed less money for it.

    Their price gouging for a cool name and brand recognition. Lots of companies do that, but they’re worse than most.

    • I don’t think you know what the term price gouging means.

      It is impossible to price gouge in a free market and your use of the term is just completely wrong in this case anyhow.

      • Upon further research, you are absoloutley correct. I’ve been misusing that term for a long time, apperentley.

        But that being said, they make average quality guns and charge way to much for them.

    • I’ve fired one of their ARs , they fire and feel just as good as my Colt. I’ve been to their shop about 20 time and they have treated me fine on every visit . We all make mistakes and you need to realise its a tv show. the gun shot blanks. Look at the gun real close. Have you not seen a prop before. You guys don’t need to get your panties in a knot.

  11. Not exactly the firearm safety that should be demonstrated on TV…but then again, TV pushes the envelope everywhere. I chalk it up as RJF TV theatrics. What do you expect? They are gun toting hillbillies. I’m more worried about the untapped gun violence demonstrated on TV than the breaking firearm safety rules with this stupid blank’s incident.

  12. This website has no sense of humor.

    You guys can make your rules, but you have no reason to expect others to obey them in every situation.

    There’s nothing wrong with what he did. I wouldn’t recommend it as a habit, but a one time prank when he was being extra careful is perfectly fine. Get over yourselves.

  13. Terrible show, terrible acting, terrible guns, terrible everything. “Let’s put rails on it” does not a suitable program make.

  14. This show is completely terrible. But whats even more terrible is that you can lose your license, and have criminal charges leveled against you for having 10 lines worth of paperwork mistake? Its even crazier that we as gun owners line up to laugh at them and say “I told you so” to them for losing their license. A particular multi letter government agency has made it their mission to crush FFL dealers and we have lined up and allowed it to happen. We really need to get the NRA/GOA/etc to fight to remove the criminal penalties and the easy leeway they have to remove/bully licenses away from the dealers. Because they control licensing *and* punishment *and* interpreting the legislation they get huge amounts of leeway in how to come after an FFL (“want to stay out of jail? give up your license”).

  15. When they tried to build that “ballistic knife/AOW” I was sure Will was going to reduce his ability to count on his fingers by half. To be honest, I was kind of sad when he walked away from that one no worse for the wear.

  16. When someone says “Relax, I do this for a living,” all I hear is, “You should get out of here, I’m totally complacent.”

  17. While I do agree some of the stuff on Red Jacket seems excessive and over the top, this particular video you “lifted” is out of context. That episode was about designing a movie prop for a film being shot in the area. That gun was altered so it simply could not take live ammunition, only blanks so that it did not pose any threat to human life while being used on set for the movie shoot.

    You took the video out of context, labeled it incorrectly, and are directly campaigning against the company because of this. Your personal opinion should not be used to impart judgement on business decisions such as described above. Especially when it is an opinion formed on a video snip taken out of context with no back round.

    Just a few episodes back, Discovery aired a whole “Behind the scenes” segment and really went into the detail on how much safety is the number one concern and how serious a mentality it is for everyone at RJF and the Discovery crew. Do you send that video out as well? That segment really showed how safety is at the forefront of everything RJF does. Even the fooling around and over the top explosions are done completely within regulation and are closely monitored.

    Your article is loaded with bias. If you don’t like the show, turn it off. If you really feel some of the things going on are unsafe, trust that the multitude of crews, employees, and Discovery Channel execs that are approving these stunts, might have a little more information than you.

  18. Today at 1100 EST May 1st. RJF made a vehicle roof mounted remote controlled M16. Now I’m not sure if it was camera angle, but I watched one of their staff load a 100 mag and send the bolt home on the weapon (make the weapon hot and ready to fire) WHILE HE WAS IN FRONT OF THE BARREL!!!!!! This is not safe practice whether the weapon was on Safe or on fire. And as far as the last safety concern especially if you have been military. Every one knows weapons safety rules…. 1 Treat EVERY weapon as if it were loaded. 2 NEVER point you weapon at anything you do not intend to shoot. 3 Keep your weapon on SAFE until your ready to fire. Keep your finger Streight and OFF the trigger untill your ready to fire….
    Still Even though he said never try this at home. It is still poor weapons safety practice and very irresponsible. All it takes is one error of thinking all the rounds were blanks or an unknow ubstruction in the barrel, that the blank can turn into a projectile. As for me if he pulled that SH!T and I was there, I would have beat his A$$ with that gun. BLANKS OR NOT

  19. Pranks and practical jokes in the workplace undermine safety in all sorts of ways. Want some real life example of jokes gone bad?
    • Consider the humorist who decides to nail his workmate’s boots to the floor. The victim nearly sprains his back pulling them free. And the boots now have holes in the soles, making them useless as safety footwear.
    • Another prank, traditionally played on all new workers at a certain facility, involves pushing the victim under the showers. This particular time, though, the victim is taped into a chair. No-one realizes that the water pouring over him is hot until he begins screaming. The victim receives third-degree scalds.
    • One man, startled by the old “joke” involving a spring-loaded cloth snake in a harmless-looking tin labeled “nuts,” jerks his head backward and slams it into a steel shelf, requiring eight stitches.
    • Sometimes, the recipient of a “joke” becomes violent. Michael Keith Williams of Roanoke, VA, stabbed Jonathan Freel to death in the parking lot of a sports bar after the victim gives Williams’s friend a “wedgie.”
    • A South Carolina student jumps a train with friends as a prank, but falls from the train and is run over.
    • Sheridan “Danny” Dalqhuist’s Bradley University, IL, roommates set off fireworks in his dorm room, intending to send him running outside in his underwear. The room catches fire and Dalqhuist dies.
    • A 12-year old Manchester boy pushes a 14-year-old into a local river as a birthday prank. The older boy can’t swim. He drowns.

    Even if a prank goes off “harmlessly” as planned, there can be unpleasant results. The victim may feel resentful, which can poison the atmosphere at your workplace and make working together uncomfortably stressful. Or the victim may try to exact revenge, leading to a series of escalating pranks, which may eventually hurt someone.

    http://www.workplaceintegra.com/blog/?p=1301

  20. son of guns will hayden,net worth 1 million 700 thousand. you think he would change that shirt he has had on for the last 2 years
    around

  21. The Duke, Clint Eastwood, Arnold Schwartzenaber, Elvis and many many many others before them all shot BLAKS at each other. All idiots? Society has become close minded. Let’s just give all our nations protection to our government to controll and we to can be called a Communist Country.
    My neighbor is against fire arms being owned by individuals. He lives two doors down from me. I promised him if his house were broken into that I out of respect for his beliefs will not to use my guns to protect his property.
    I still fought to defend his and others freedom with my M-16

    • Yes, actors did/do shoot blanks at each other. But these stunts that involve firearms are performed under a controlled environment just like any other stunt in Hollywood. But the use of blanks is still dangerous. The appearance of a blank cartridge can give a false sense of safety. Although blank cartridges do not contain a bullet, precautions are still required because fatalities and severe injuries have resulted on occasions when blank cartridges have been fired at very close ranges. In general, deaths or injuries from blanks occur when blanks are fired by people who are unaware of their destructive capabilities. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19901805

      • I just looked at this thread and mr. Serna, as marine myself who served in combat, I could not openly bash another devil dog as you do. It is obvious that your personal vendetta against a tv show is way over board. The key word is “tv show”. It’s for entertainment. All in all it opens people up to the gun world. Trust me there safety is pretty good, with a big backer like discovery I can pretty much bet that their safety is top notch during actual live range times. Also you did take the video and use it out I context, the entire show was about movie guns for a movie production. Make sure you write Stanley Kubrick who made a pure marine classic and bash him about movie gun and blank usage. It was a prop gun and was used to open the scene for a movie build. I am now a police officer and like you must live by safety, but relax and enjoy entertainment, that is what this show is. Also to take a video as you did,out if context makes you no better than a anti gun politician using altered weapons stats against out right to bare arms. As a former marine you make me sick for bashing one of our own in an open thread, if you must bash and bring the USMC into it , do it between fellow marines. Also to judge him for his MOS, is also bs. I was a mech in country and also served as a gunner who saw actual combat. A helo save my butt once and it took a ground crew to keep it running and ready to go. they had just as big of a part as the pilot in getting to me and making sure I got home. To me that shows lack of loyalty and respect, should i take a copy of this thread and send it to your legal dept for putting your employers name all over an internet thread for pure personal use. Stop judging and hating, don’t like it, don’t watch. Like I said its tv and not to bad compared to other stuff that’s on. Last think about this devil dog, did you see actual combat? If that answer is no the your no harder than some helo window washer. I hate to do that after what I just said but bro you deserve it. Semper Fi.

        • I contacted Will Hayden before I contacted my company with the issues. His attitude was condescending. So I contacted my company with the issues of not only safety but his implying that he had a major gun deal going with a nuclear facility in the desert. Then showing aerial footage of our facility and of our nuclear defenders at their posts. That gun deal was a total fabrication by your beloved marine. I know that for a fact because I work there. Loyalty and respect ended when our nuclear facility and nuclear defenders image were aired to make himself/show legitimate. I contacted my company execs with all the information. They were not aware of the proposed gun deal or the use of the aerial footage aired on the show. They are now fully aware of this website, my postings and show. As a company employee it is my duty to report anything that will effect my companies image. I am not privy to what use the execs and legal did with the information. But since we are a federal regulated facility we have had many visits from Homeland Security and other organizations I’m sure something took place. As for Stanley Kubrick, if I see that he is falsely using our company to legitimate himself then damn right I will treat him the same. It’s no different than wearing medals you didn’t earn.

        • There are basically three categories for a Marine; squared-away, regular and shitbird. Squared-away are small in numbers as well as shithirds. Most Marines fall within the regular category. In bootcamp I was told that Marines don’t lie, steal, or cheat with a list of other Marines don’t do list. I fit in the middle category. I wasn’t quite squared-away but I didn’t lie, steal or cheat, ect. The only non-personal item that I took home was a pilots survival kit I was given. Oh, I could have taken all types of goodies since I had access to the officers flight equipment. But Marines do not steal. On the side note that survival flare pen from the pilots survival kit looks strangely similar to that alligator kill pen designed on the show. Hmmmmm (?). Now where I work the term “whistleblower” is not a bad or evil word. It is encouraged. Safety, Integrity and Trust, Respect and Accountability are our core values. In these political times those values are vital to my companies survival. I can’t say for sure but it looks like those values don’t exist in many places in America anymore. I hope I’m wrong. Let me ask you this since you were in the Marines as well. What category of Marine were you? If you had known of a fellow Marine committing an infraction would you have said something to him/her? Would you have reported it to a superior if the infractions continued? As a police officer are you a Serpico type, look the other way type or go along with the buddies type because you are in the line of fire together?( By the way are you saying that Will Hayden saved your butt while in combat or that he was part of the ground crew that did? ) You see I was plane captain for the F4/J Phantom, AV-8A Harrier, and OV-10 Bronco at the NARF at Cherry Point. The other name for plane captain is wing-wiper. Wing-wiper is a derogatory term used by Marines for those in the Air Wing as you should know just as wind shield wiper is used for those on rotary wing. By the way have you ever heard the derogatory term jarhead? Did you know that Devil Dog is also a derogatory term that Marines embrace? In German the actual meaning is devil bitch. But Leatherneck, Jarhead, Devil Dog, grunt, wing wiper, wind shield wiper ect all derogatory terms embraced by Marines. Wait just a minute, I actually could be stepping out of line here. In todays politically correct environment the words I’m using could be words from the old Corps. Words like shitbird, wing wipers, wind shield wipers, ect may not be acceptable or used terminology anymore. As an example I found out that in todays Marine Corps the term for someone with a Marksmanship badge is “pizza box” but in my day it was “toilet seat.” It could be that I am out of my era. If I offended any of yew I apologize.

        • I’m a little embarrassed. In my haste I misspelled a very important word. I wrote “If I offended any of yew I apologize.” I’m not sure if anyone noticed but I spelled “yew” incorrectly. The correct way the sentence should have read was “If I offended any of ewe I apologize.” 🙂 Semper Fi

  22. The weapon had been altered as a movie prop and was incapable of firing live rounds. I’ve used blank rounds, and their noise level is not comparable to live rounds. Firing blank rounds does propel hot gases in an area in front of the barrel, but the editing of the video does not clearly show if the weapon was aimed directly at the two gunsmiths or not. The biggest safety concern to me is what type of tools they were using and how they were being used. If you’re using a sharp object in close proximity to your other hands, being startled is a bad thing.

  23. Sure, this guy is a clown, who charges too much for weapons you can get elsewhere. Sure, the female on the show, with dark hair, ( idk her name), pisses me off whenever she speaks. Why isn’t anyone talking about how these assholes took a perfectly good fully auto weapon and disabled it to only shoot blanks?! If I’m not mistaken, that’s probably a Pre-86 ban weapon, and this clown coverts it to shoot only blanks. I hate this show for one reason: they drove up the price of saiga shotguns, and they are willing to show milling of machine parts but the simple conversion of a saiga rifle to an ak-47 setup, they won’t show. Maybe because it’s so easy, that no one should be paying double for it, or maybe because they like to act like they actually do some gunsmiting when they move a fcg forward and slap a pistol grip on. I don’t know who’s a bigger idiot, these clowns at red jacket or the assholes paying $1,400+ for a $500-$600 firearm.

  24. Still the same ole bickering, everybody is cooler than them, I still like Red Jacket show. Better than dancing with the Stars, or whatever people who need to complain, Don’t know why some of you keep following this with the same ole gripes, Hope the show keeps going

  25. What a lame ass show. First off Someone please tell that Joe guy to shave his face he looks ridiculous. Second How come they don’t ever show how the gun there selling performs? When im testing a weapon i want to see how much range i have and how much penetration im getting. Blowing up a tin can with some gas in it is dumb and wont tell you anything. It’s just a bunch of smoke and mirrors tricking you into thinking the weapon has more power than it does. Lets snap back to reality clean shaven and give it another shot rjf. We want to see accuracy, distance, and stopping power..(ie) “concrete not tin.”

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