If you shoot in 3-gun competitions or are just interested in some bolt-on mods for your AR-15 that can add some color and capacity to your magazines, check out the new Magpul Gen3 PMag Base Extensions by Coronado Arms. [Noobs note: a magazine base plate is the piece on the bottom of the magazine that holds the follower, magazine spring, and whatever other goodies your magazine may have inside. A mag base extension is an upgraded version of that plate that “extends” the functionality of the off-the-shelf plate, adding to a magazine’s round capacity. They can also add a personalized (and colorful) touch.] The bases from Coronado are available in . . .
We say it all the time here at TTAG: the only two places a gun should ever be stored are on your hip or securely locked away. There’s been a boom recently in the number of bedside handgun vaults coming onto the market, but they all suffer from the same problems — namely they all look butt-ugly. Enter The Gunbox, a beautifully styled single firearm occupancy vault designed to not only provide some high-tech security, but to also look stylish while doing it. The only question left is does it work? . . .
Have you ever wanted to mount a red-dot optic on your pistol but didn’t want to send your slide out to be milled? Well, now you can attach a Picatinny rail mount to most pistols with a front attachment rail (a 1913-style or similar), without gunsmithing. All you need is a UM3 sight mount . . .
The first time I held a SCAR 17S, the thing that struck me was how light it was as well as the convenience of the side-mounted charging handle. I’ve been a fan of left side charging handles ever since I got my hands on a LWRC REPR and I really appreciate the fact that when shooting this gun in the prone position, I don’t have to come off the scope to charge it. Shooting it was also a pleasure as the muzzle brake was very efficient and produced less perceived recoil than my SIG SAUER 716 despite its lighter weight. The only real drawback that I noticed . . .
Grips make the man, or so I’ve been told. It’s probably why none of my guns sport stock grips. If they’re replaceable I end up switching them them out for something better. If they’re nonexistent because the frame is polymer, I end up stippling them. To this day, I’ve never been completely satisfied with most stock grip configurations and the Beretta 92 is no different. So in keeping with my Wilson Combat vein, I ordered some of their G10 grips, complete with Wilson Combat logo bling . . .
After my review of the Original Handgun Hanger, the nice folks at Gun Storage Solutions sent me a few more of their handgun hanging solutions. Included in the goody bag were the Back-Under, the Back-Over, and the Over-Under. The Back-Under and Back-Over are both designed for the back side of a shelf in a safe while the Over-Under is designed for the front side. All three work very well and help take advantage of unused storage space . . .
There’s little doubt that Magpul’s innovative designs have done more to promote the idea of “tactical chic” in the last couple decades than any other company. They were one of the first to actually put some effort into designing visually appealing firearms accessories instead of simply sticking to the pre-existing military designs that seemed stuck in the 1980s. While they may have initially made a name for themselves for their visual style (and helpful mag pulling accessories), what has kept them in the spotlight is their ability to innovate and produce useful designs that solve problems. One of their latest: the ACS-L carbine stock . . .
NcStar, at least in my mind, is best known for their line of VERY affordable scopes on OpticsPlanet. I’ve never had a real inclination to check out their gear as optics quality isn’t normally something I skimp on. But then Nick sent me this octagonal shaped scope to test out, and now that I’ve put my hands on on one, I have some formed opinions based on real world experience. I still wouldn’t buy one…
Good free-floated hand guards make for good gun experiences. Finding a good one can be a little tough, though, and there are certain things that can really irk you, as I pointed out in my Strike Industries review. Specifically, I look for a few things when reviewing a free-floated hand guard (FFHG). First, ease of installation. If a mechanically-minded guy with a vise, action block, and a torque wrench can’t do it, that’s a big downer. Second, it needs to mate to the receiver like it was born there. Third, it should be light weight. And last, it should provide a nearly seamless top rail for accessories. I found the ODIN Works KMod Forend fits the bill across the board . . .
Free floated Key-Mod handguards seem to be all the rage. A bunch of companies make them. I’ve had the pleasure to try out a few, and over the last few months I’ve started to form an opinion of them as a whole. Mostly, I like them. As a guy with small hands, I can certainly appreciate the slimmer profile provided by not having Picatinny rail sprouting from every surface, and I generally enjoy a lighter gun whenever possible. Strike Industries has a Key-Mod handguard that features a cut out for an A2 sight that claims to be lightweight, durable, and endlessly modular thanks to Key-Mod as part of their Mega Fins line of handguards. I got the opportunity to try it out, and I’m mostly a fan . . .
A good trigger can make all the difference in the world. A high end precision AR-15 rifle might be mechanically capable of shooting 1/4 MoA groups all day long, but if the shooter can’t properly interface with the firearm through the trigger then it all goes to hell pretty quickly. Hiperfire is a very new company from the land of MST3K and walleye that has started making triggers for the AR-15 platform that have a very interesting design — a design that might put them on the top of your shopping list.
The AR-15 is a dirty, dirty girl. The gas expansion system it uses to operate sprays hot carbon all over the internal parts of the gun every time it cycles, leaving a baked-on layer of gritty, nasty gunk that can clog up your rifle and make it stop working. It sucks, and the traditional method to keep your gun running sucks even more: regular and thorough maintenance. I mean, this is 2014, surely there’s a way I can throw money at the problem and make it go away, right? That’s where Cryptic Coatings comes in with their new bolt carrier groups . . .