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Author Archives: Brett Solomon

Brett Solomon got his first taste of the magazine world covering car electronics for CarSound & Performance Magazine. He landed the job by being noticed for designing high-end car audio systems. Which was fine by him because there was no way he was going to pass the third level of calculus toward an electrical engineering degree at University of Delaware. Not with those DuPont scholars around campus, he’ll take Journalism over Engineering, thank you very much. He has since written for a number of publications (think in-flight journalism) that lack the chutzpah of Robert Farago, and having all of those milquetoast reviews pent up in his system now allows his pen to spit fire. We’ll, he is just not that mean but happy to tell the truth…and the truth is most firearms are fun!

Gun Review: HK P30LS in .40 S&W

At first I was going to succumb to the Glock gods and indoctrinate myself like the tens of thousands of others who buy a reliable polymer pistol. But if the Glock 23 is the Toyota Camry V6 of pistols, I wanted something a little more towards the BMW end of the spectrum. Don’t get me wrong- that Camry is a wonderfully engineered vehicle. It’s just not for me. Enter the HK P30LS in .40 S&W. So what does double the price get you?  Let’s break down those letters. HK still stands for reputable build quality – even if HK hates you and you suck (Google the last six words, noobs).  The P30 is the latest version of the P2000 pistol that’s been around for the past decade.  The L stands for the long slide option so the barrel grows from 3.86 to 4.45 inches. Finally the S stands for safety. And who doesn’t like safety? . . .

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The Beretta Gallery or Brett Does the Upper East Side

Yesterday my family and I took a stroll around the Upper East Side. I happened to get a parking spot in front of the Beretta store on Madison Ave., a place I’d always wanted to check out but hadn’t had the chance to before. The Beretta Gallery isn’t your typical Bass Pro Shop or Cabela’s brand of outfitter. Befitting the neighborhood, the Beretta store blends right in with the adjacent tony shops such as Longchamp and Devi Kroell. In fact, there’s zero chance of assaulting the typical New Yorker’s sensibilities with anything so crass as a firearm. Waking by, they’d never know there’s a store in their midst that sells – gasp – guns for hunting. No PX4 Storm window displays in Mike Bloomberg’s town . . .

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Pistol Training: MDTS Combative Pistol 1 and 2

Tyler Kee is in the middle of his series on getting his CCW training in Texas and I saw how much he liked his instruction. So when I read about MDTS after hearing only good things locally, I signed up. Although there’s plenty of debate in the firearms community on the issue of forcing citizens to undergo training, there’s no doubt about the merits of taking a good class or two. However, the MDTS Combative Pistol 1 and 2 class is probably beyond what a typical out-of-the-box noob can handle . . .

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TTAG Turns Two: Solomon Edition

When I discovered TTAG after only a few months of being alive (not me…but TTAG), I had always wondered where Farago had washed up after that whole TTAC thing. But the coincidence that I had just finished filling out the paperwork for my New York pistol license was almost too surreal. I was frantically researching appropriate CCW options and Farago, green like me, was preaching to me on the phone. Something like, ‘Why don’t we just use one standard round to test all guns? For defense too. Use that for everything. One manufacturer for all. What’s with all the confusion?’ I’m glad the bulk of my pistol knowledge stems from researching stories for TTAG and not just the buff books as it has always been. And now Robert’s knowledge is starting to eclipse industry experts after immersing himself in the gun culture 24/7. Clearly he sees the merit of different loads for different applications. But we were young! I only wish I contribute more often than my work schedules allows. But I hope to be able to polish up more than a few gems before TTAG turns three. Happy birthday to all and hope to meet the other writers in person one day.

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LIFETIME FITNESS BANS GUNS ON THESE PREMISES

RF invented the acronym OFWG (Old Fat White Guy) for a reason: a lot of Caucasian firearms fans would rather practice pushing their defensive handgun gun away from their body after a holster draw than push away from the dinner table. Speaking from personal experience, it’s all too easy to get into a rut of Fritos and Hoppe’s #9. But there comes a time in every OFWG’s life when he looks in the mirror and says WTF. When LifeTime Athletic rolled into my town—complete with basketball courts, pools, and water slides—I was ready to face the fats. Until I saw “LIFETIME FITNESS BANS GUNS ON THESE PREMISES” stenciled on the door . . .

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SAT Cheaters and Pinned Stocks? Really?

Last night’s edition of CBS’s 60 Minutes featured Nassau County DA Kathleen Rice. She was peacocking for the cameras after prosecuting an SAT cheating ring to the fullest extent of the law. Years ago she was also featured for prosecuting a drunk driver who smashed into a limousine that resulted in the toughest drunk driving laws extant. Nothing wrong with that. So what does it have to do with guns? Along with high schoolers cheating on their SATs, she also has a vendetta against our local gun shops.

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Gun Review: CZ 455 Lux

Of all of the firearms I come across, bolt-action .22LRs always have a special place in my heart. It was the first gun I ever held and fired, in a Pennsylvania summer camp before mixing rifles and children was demonized and you always remember your first. When I first told my father I was in the market for a good – nay, great – bolt action .22, he replied “What are you, Fess Parker emulating Davy as a boy?  Why don’t you go buy a musket?”  Contrary to his demographically-similar peers, Dad actually likes to keep up with the latest advances in firearm technology…

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First Look: Kel-Tec KSG

It was going to be a typical Thursday evening at the range. But my old friend and former TTAG contributor Capt. John Raguso was able to procure a testing and evaluation sample of the much-anticipated Kel-Tec KSG. That would be the gunmaker’s plastic fantastic bullpup shotgun—the prototypical star of last year’s SHOT Show. Note: Capt. John, now scribing for Gun World magazine, is not a sales rep for Kel Tec. He just sounds that way. The net effect is the same (so to speak) . . .

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Gear Review: Crimson Trace MVF-515 Modular Vertical Foregrip

Crimson Trace calls their MVF-515 vertical foregrip “modular.” The ability to swap the green laser for a red one is the MVF-515′s only “modularity.” Making that swap would be like trading in Blake Lively for Conchata Ferrell. Unless you started with Conchata (red laser) already. Then the foregrip makes the unit a lot more gooder. And plenty good it is too: a robust piece of America’s finest polymers that’s a phenomenal home defense solution. Call me a militarized muppet, but I’ve fallen in love the all-in-one utility of a piece that practically screams ergonomics and engineering smarts . . .

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Johnny Appleseed Takes Manhattan. Pt. 1

Project Appleseed is a rifle training course combining marksmanship with a civics lesson. “Good shooting requires learning positive traits such as patience, determination, focus, attention to detail, and persistence,” their website declares. “Since these skills are likewise key elements of mature participation in civic activities, we urge our students to take what they have learned about themselves as marksmen and apply it to their participation in their communities and in the wider American society in accordance with their own choices about how Americans should govern themselves.” When I heard that Appleseed was dropping in the Big Apple, I had to attend . . .

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Gear Review: SnapSafe Titan Safe

You don’t need me to tell you that a good gunsafe is a necessity. My biggest problem: moving large items around my New York condo is about as easy as to me as taking Thermodynamics II at MIT.  It can’t be done by me or anyone I know. The SnapSafe, safe that can be moved in sections to any room, holds [almost] all the appeal of Bar Rafieli in spandex. The Zanetti has been around for years; the ads in the American Rifleman piqued my interest in SnapSafe. The lack of online reviews made me leery. t certainly solved my logistical problems. So I gambled a Grover, got a little change back, and found out . . .

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Irresponsible Gun Owner of the Day: Ignacio Galvan [Not Shown]

Yo Ignacio? So you buy the gun ten years ago, before you have your first child, but somehow forget where you stashed it? Whereupon your eight-year-old son decides he needs some extra cash, takes it to school (loaded no less) and sells it to another student.  Taurus might not be the finest nameplate in firearms, but the buyer sure got a great deal. His $3 purchase even included a spare magazine and the all-important serial number delete option (it was scratched off). The potential buyer thought it was a toy until he showed it to Mom. Who then brought the weapon back to school (huh?) officials who in turn called the police . . .

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NY DA Busts Five Nassau Gun Shops For Selling Illegal “Assault Weapons”

So most of the gun stores in my county were raided by the New York State Police yesterday. “During the 10-month probe, five Nassau County gun shops illegally sold assault weapons to undercover DA investigators and members of the New York State Police,” nassaucountyny.gov reports. “As a result of the investigation, Rice’s office has arrested and charged four store owners and five of their employees.” Imagine this happening with all of the bakeries or hair salons in your county. We’re talking about the horrors of . . . adjustable stocks. OK, stocks that can be modified to be adjustable . . .

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Gear Review: EOTech XPS3-2 Holographic Weapons Sight

So, you have gone through the motions of justifying the purchase of a ‘Modern Sporting Rifle’ for home defense. Perhaps your property is big enough that a shotgun might not reach out and touch someone at distance. Or perhaps the look of a black gun will even further intimate any intruder to go farther. But really, say what you will, it is badass to be able to play with the same equipment our troops use to annihilate the bad guys in the sandbox.

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Pink Guns Are Now Legal in New York

Hey Samantha dear—come on down (once again) to Nassau County, NY and go through the draconian hurdles needed for a pistol license because it is finally legal to possess a pink pistol. Because of an obscure piece of legislation, it was illegal for any of us residents of Nassau County to pack any color other than black. Then came grey, green, and silver. But because of a big fight from a firearm activist group led by Alan Chwick, a judge has just ruled we now can pack any color we want. The reason for the insanity?

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