Reports from the scene indicate that the shooter in today’s shooting near Seattle — high school freshman Jaylen Fryberg — walked up to his friends during lunch and began shooting them in the back using a “small handgun.” Describing the incident, the witness stated that “it wasn’t just random” — the shooter knew his victims. Contrary to the typical narrative, Jaylen had been crowned freshman homecoming king on the 17th and was a popular student. In the aftermath . . .
I am, and continue to be, a massive nerd. I spent my college years enjoying LAN parties and staying up all night for the latest video game releases rather than going out to frat parties, and these days I still enjoy a good game. Something that has recently been detracting from that enjoyment of games is a little thing called “GamerGate,” and while you might think that it’s a gamer-only issue the fact is that it’s starting to seep into the realm of firearms as well. But there’s more to it than that, and in fact the people who instigated the GamerGate situation and gun control activists have a whole lot in common. . .
[Final Update 10/24/2014 4:30 PM Central]
According to local law enforcement, there are two confirmed dead (including the shooter) at a high school in Marysville, Washington (outside of Seattle) and four injuries which have been transported to a nearby hospital. The shooting took place in and around the cafeteria of the school, reminiscent of the Columbine school shooting a few decades ago. There’s a live stream available here of the local news station covering the event with live video.
Guns.com was out at the Knob Creek Machine Gun Shoot this weekend and spotted something nifty on one of the tables. A new company has developed an electronic trigger for the AR-15 rifle platform, and it boasts some interesting improvements — mainly for military users, though. The trigger is programmable, meaning that those with a registered machine gun can tinker with everything from how many rounds are fired per burst to the cyclic rate of the gun (the trigger is timed, not mechanically tripped). For those without a registered full auto device there will be a semi-auto version coming out soon, but my bet is that it will be on the market for 24 hours before someone figures out a way to make it fire more than one round per trigger pull.
The 1911 handgun is the gold standard, in my opinion. The sleek and sexy look of the gun is just pure old school cool, and there are enough big name manufacturers of the firearm to keep the cost of getting your very own model pretty reasonable. But for those who bought a standard “mil spec” 1911 and want to tack on some accessories, the lack of rail space and the distinctly un-tacticality of the gun can be a problem. Enter the Recover grip for 1911 handguns . . .
300 AAC Blackout is really starting to take off. Almost every manufacturer offers it as an option for their guns, and the ammo is now widely available in big box stores like Academy. It seems like 300 BLK is at the tipping point where, at the very least, it will be self-sustaining and hang around much like other “boutique” calibers like .243 Win and .357 SIG. Part of that appeal comes from the easily suppressed nature of the round, offering subsonic capabilities alongside supersonic capabilities without changing anything. With an eye especially on the 300 BLK market, Liberty Suppressors released their Chaotic 30 caliber suppressor . . .
While the Aimpoint optic might be the default standard for red dot sights, there are very few people who can actually afford one. The usual model people seem to prefer is the T-1, which clocks in at over $650. That’s a lot to pay for something so small and simple, and Aimpoint keeps losing sales to other cheaper red dots like the Vortex SPARC ($200). Now Aimpoint has announced a new sight – the Aimpoint Carbine Optic – priced much more competitively than the T-1 to appeal to budget-concious customers with a modern sporting rifles. But with an MSRP of $393, will it be “budget” enough? Presser after the jump . . .
I’m a HUGE proponent of keeping an emergency medical kit and/or a bugout bag in your car. Terrible things happen all the time, and being prepared to meet any challenge is part of staying alive. It’s the same mentality that keeps me tooling up with a 1911 every morning. It looks like Brownells is trying to cash in on the Ebola epidemic by offering a slightly upgraded version of their existing first aid kit with some extra gubbins, and while I prefer rolling my own it’s not half bad. Presser after the jump . . .
The U.S. military has been thinking about trading up from their hodgepodge of 1980s era handguns to something a little more modern and modular. At the moment there is an array of different guns in service, from the Beretta 92FS to the SIG SAUER Mk25 to the venerable Colt 1911 and compact versions for the criminal investigation units. Simplifying their arsenal and ensuring interoperability even across branches of service would make acquisition, maintenance, personalization, and even sharing ammunition in combat far easier than today. The Modular Handgun System competition aims to do just that, and SIG SAUER just started showing off their entry in the competition at AUSA this week . . .
FLIR has recently released a consumer grade thermal camera for general usage, and I was all excited — until I realized that it was for iPhones only. And only specific kinds of iPhones, specifically not the new one. Enter Seek Thermal and their shot across FLIR’s bow, a small add-on thermal camera that works with both Apple iPhones and Android devices, all for only $199. I’ve got my mitts on one of their products to test out, and I gotta admit that it’s a blast watching things heat up at the range. I get the feeling it will be beneficial for things like hunting as well, so we’ll see. Expect a full review when I’m done geeking out.
The folks at NFATracker.com have for years now tracked how long it takes for NFA paperwork to be approved. They remain the best source of information about the NFA Firearms Branch of the ATF (since the ATF doesn’t really do the whole metrics thing). Ever since a spike in applications in the last couple years forced the department to finally hire some more staff we’ve been waiting with bated breath for the wait times to come down from their 14 month peak (as in, 14 months for a paper form 4…from the moment you sent it in to an approved stamp). According to a new chart from NFATracker.com, that prodigious wait time has dwindled to 30 days . . .
First, a little context. Washington State is gearing up for a vote on a proposed “universal background check” law in this coming election cycle, and as we all know universal background check (“UBC”) laws suck (because of the unintended consequences mainly, not necessarily due to the intent of the law). As a way of ginning up support for the measure, the Seattle Times ran a piece a few days ago with a rather sensational title ‘Background check denials rise for would-be pistol buyers‘ trying to lead people to believe that more criminals are trying to buy guns and therefore we need new laws to protect us from evil. There are a couple of problems with that analysis. Or lack thereof . . .