Gear Review: Huntertown Arms Guardian 9 Suppressor

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By Nicholas Porter

Many people grow nostalgic for their first gun, and again when they receive their first NFA stamp. I cannot deny that that is the case with this suppressor. While it was not the first I had purchased, it was the first to come back approved due to the expedience of an E-Filed Form 4. For those who are not familiar with the manufacturer, Huntertown Arms is a small company building suppressors in Fort Wayne Indiana. Suppressors are basically all they manufacture, and they do so at a price point that easily trumps most other competitors.  In fact, the Guardian 9mm suppressor in this review has an MSRP at only $349 . . .

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Gear Review: Bushnell Elite Tactical SMRS 1-6.5×24

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Perhaps the biggest improvement to the basic M-16/AR-15 design was the move away from the integral hand guard in favor of a more optic-friendly “flattop” design featuring M1913 Picatinny rails adorning the upper receiver. This change set in motion a great deal of technological innovation in scope design for assault rifles. Civilian AR-15 / SCAR shooters seeking the flexibility of using both a red dot/ holographic optic for close in work while switching to magnification for longer range shots (200-600 yards) now have a number of options. Bushnell makes an excellent optic that strikes a good balance between optical clarity, weight, ruggedness, and price: the SMRS 1 – 6.5 x 24. Chris Dumm and I spent over two years testing the second focal plane (“SFP”) version of this scope on at least ten different rifles and can now give a full report on the experience . . .

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Gear Review: CrossBreed MicroClip IWB Holster for Kahr P380

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By Johannes P.

I’ll never forget my first bit of formal training with firearms. I didn’t even own a handgun yet (I was borrowing the instructor’s GLOCK), and during one of the breaks, I mentioned to someone that given all of the options available, it might take me a while before I had the gun that suited my needs. The instructor overheard me and just laughed. “It doesn’t stop with the gun,” he snorted. “You’re going to end up with an entire drawer full of holsters before you find the right one. You’re gonna spend as much on holsters as you did on the gun! And you should. The holster’s just as important as the gun,” he firmly advised . . .

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Gear Review: Bandera Leather Duck Strap

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I don’t know much about hunting ducks, but I do know a thing or two about hunting in general. And the first big lesson of hunting is that pulling the trigger is the easy part. Getting your game from the field to the table is where the real work starts. Having done a little bird hunting in my time, I know that a suitable vest is all you need to hold a daily bag limit of doves or quail in the field. Ducks though, they’re a bigger animal. For a duck, you need a strap. Specifically, a duck strap . . .

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Gear Review: Seek Thermal Camera

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Thermal optics are amazing. Using a part of the light spectrum that we can’t see, they can turn a pitch black night into virtual daytime, showing us a completely new level of detail. The downside: they cost an astronomical amount of money if you want to use them on your gun. The cheapest option available right now clocks in at $3,500, not a small sum for those who might just want to use that tech once or twice a year for hunting. Thankfully there have been a number of companies bringing consumer-grade thermal optics devices to the market. One of the more interesting is the $250 Seek Thermal camera, designed for smart phones . . .

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Gear Review: Cyclops Sirius 500

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As depressing as I find it, I’m now old enough to remember my nighttime varmint hunting being hampered by battery life, weight, and fragility of an impressively large Q Beam spotlight. My hunting buddies and I would drive around with a spotlight plugged into the the 12V cigarette outlet of my 1988 Isuzu Trooper while a battery-powered version waited in reserve until we spotted a critter that needed shooting. Once we’d identified our target, we’d hop out and light up the Eveready fueled unit so we could shoot. The problem was that the battery on that thing lasted maybe 20 minutes . . .

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Gear Review: Last Stand Target System

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Last year, a good friend delivered a 24″ x 24″ piece of thick AR 500 steel from a local vendor. Nick and I had taken a tour of the vendor’s factory and casually mentioned that if a piece of steel ever fell off a truck, we’d be happy to take it off their hands. We both promptly forgot about it until said friend sent me a Skype message to let me know that he had a large piece of steel riding around in his truck killing his gas mileage. That gift quickly became a problem as it did not have a single attachment point to hang it from anything . . .

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Gear Review: 2A Stick Up! Holster

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My review of the 2A Pancake Holster reinforced the fact that our readers are a picky bunch. Some called that rig too big. Others said it was just too ugly, even to cover with a garment. I didn’t really care since it did a great job of concealing my firearm. But boy, oh boy did it create some visceral hatred in a few of our commenters. With that in mind, I’m actually excited to see what the future holds for the other major offering from 2A Holsters, the Stick Up! holster pictured above . . .

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Gear Review: Streamlight TLR-4™G Light/Laser

Courtesy Joe Grine

Streamlight introduced the TLR-4™G at the 2014 SHOT Show. Like the prior TLR-4™ models, the new light and laser unit is designed for compact handguns. However, the TLR-4G features a green laser instead of the traditional red beam. I don’t consider myself to be an expert on weapon-mounted lights or lasers, so this review is intended to provide a layperson’s “consumer-level” perspective. Feel free to dispense knowledge in the comment section.  Nonetheless, we all draw on our experiences, and so I will relay a true story that will bring home the point of why I believe flashlights are mandatory for home defense . . .

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Gear Review: All in One Tool for Ruger Mark Pistols

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The Ruger Mark I/II/III and 22/45 series of pistols are awesome little guns. And like the 10/22 rifles, plenty of people count their first pistol experience as one that involves Ruger’s .22 plinker extraordinaire. One problem — some might say the only problem — with the pistols, though, is how damn difficult they are to disassemble and reassemble for cleaning. Enter this oddly shaped, but VERY functional tool from The Right Tool Company . . .

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