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 . . .
Students of history with gunspertise will enjoy this one: TrackingPoint’s video imagining how the battle for the Alamo would’ve gone if the Texans had been equipped with a brace of their “fire and forget” semi-automatics. (OFWGs will remember the Saturday Night Live sketch where Napoleon rode along with Dan Akroyd in a B-52 bomber.) The thing about it is, technological advantages never last long on the battlefield. The enemy either finds an effective counter-measure or, as is the case with ISIS and native Americans, eventually gets its hands on the superior weapon(s) for itself. So the question is, what would have happened after Santa Anna’s troops had been decimated by the TrackingPoint rifles? Well, for the spoilsports amongst us.
By Diego Cesarei
The K31and the P210 are for me the most iconic products of the Swiss weapon industry. All in, the K31 screams “Swiss Made.” The mechanics are exquisite yet simple, it’s sturdy, but elegant and the accuracy fits the stereotype of everything made in the Alps republic. Thankfully, one thing about the rifle that’s not Swiss is the price. I paid 150CHF for my 1941 K31 and a quick on-line check confirmed that the US price is pretty much the same making it a super-affordable bolt action . . .
There’s little doubt that the AR-15 is the most popular rifle design around. Everyone seems to have one, and while the design is solid it can definitely be improved. As a 60+ year old design it has aged extremely well, but there’s one specific improvement that can be made to the average AR-15 pattern rifle that costs less than $50, is easy to install, and yet can make all the difference in terms of the accuracy and usefulness of the firearm. What is this improvement I’m talking about?
Reader Matt writes:
I think the antis are turning tail on assault weapons because, A) they see the futility in it, and B) because we are going to see a renewed push against handguns. The antis turning around and agreeing with our points buys them ground with the public and puts us in a precarious situation. They can say, “See, we agree with you and acknowledge the fact that ‘assault weapons’ aren’t the real danger. We were wrong and admit it! And we’re even in agreement with you that handguns are used in more murders! So…why aren’t you on board with doing something about that?” . . .
The piston-based operating system has long been the gold standard for firearms design. Sure there are other methods like roller-delayed blowback and Blish lock designs, but nothing really stands up to the simplicity and raw reliability of a piston. The AR-15 rifle was originally designed to use a “gas expansion” system for operation, but these days more and more people are getting into the piston game. I’ve had a couple people ask me the difference between long and short stroke pistons, and so here’s the long and the short of it . . .
Ruger’s take on Col. Jeff Cooper’s scout rifle design has been extremely popular. A short, relatively light weight bolt-action Jeep of a rifle chambered in .308 that can handle an awful lot of jobs really well for a large number of gun owners. What’s not to like? Now Ruger’s announced an expansion of their Gunsite Scout Rifle chambered in lighter-shooting 5.56/.223. The new chambering is priced the same the original at an MSRP of $1039 for most models. Press release after the jump . . .
When Masterpiece Arms announced that they were planning on releasing a bolt action rifle at SHOT Show, I wasn’t all that impressed. Masterpiece Arms has a bit of a reputation for making odd firearms, and they’ve never really been known as a precision firearms manufacturer. That was before I took a trip down to Georgia to see their operation in person, and the impression I had of their products changed a great deal following that weekend. To make sure that their build quality wasn’t a fluke I asked to test one of their new bolt action rifles back in Texas and see if it was really worth the coin . . .
We reviewed Charlie Sisk’s STAR rifle a year and a half ago, but Charlie hasn’t been resting on his laurels. Instead of just running with his precision rifles and cranking out the same thing time and again, he’s been hard at work perfecting the stock system he designed and adding a few new bells and whistles. We recently got our hands on one of his latest rifles that is destined to be donated in support of HAVA, an organization that helps disabled soldiers transition back to civilian life, and the differences are night and day . . .
Lever guns are awesome. Not awesome as in “that hamburger was awesome.” Awesome as in standing mute in the face of God. If you have any doubts on that score, check out the bit of the video above where we learn about John Moses Browning’s contribution to lever gun design – realizing that John Moses Browning was His representative here on Earth. If you own a lever gun, you don’t need me to convince you. If you don’t, what IS your problem? Didn’t watch enough/any episodes of The Rifleman? Never shot one? Never checked out the gun porn at grizzlycustom.com? Handled one of the post-Freedom Group Marlins? Whatever it is, get over it. If you don’t have a lever gun in your collection, you don’t have a collection. And yes, I have lever fever. You?
At some point, everyone looks back on their achievements and says, “Why not do more?” Primary Weapons Systems is known for their piston driven wonderguns and TTAG has had the pleasure of testing their MK 114 rifle and MK 107 Pistol in the last few months. Short story, we’re impressed with what they’re putting out. But back in early May, PWS announced that they’d also be releasing a direct impingement (DI) upper for the masses. It still uses the same high quality parts and manufacturing processes Nick and I raved about in our reviews, but in a simple, more cost effective package. When you make one of the best piston guns out there, making a good DI gun shouldn’t be too hard, right? . . .
No doubt the anti-gunners will seize on the tragedy in Arizona to further their civilian disarmament agenda. They’ll conflate fully automatic firearms with semi-automatic firearms to “prove” that guns are dangerous (which they are). Too dangerous for civilians (which they aren’t). The antis will also use this as ammo against anyone who suggests – as I do – that the ban on fully-automatic firearms is unconstitutional and unnecessary. If it saves one life . . . At the same time, I wonder if the AZ homicide will reignite the furore that surrounded the Uzi submachine gun back when Don Johnson was The Man. I hope not. The Uzi is a battle-tested beauty; the world’s most prolific sub. There’s no reason Americans shouldn’t be able to buy a full-auto Uzi. Yes?