Obtaining Firearms

Obtaining Firearms

I just heard from a friend of mine that his elderly neighbor passed away recently and that his wife was selling off his gun collection, which is apparently sizable. This in turn led me to think about some of the different ways in which people acquire firearms in our country.

The first (and least likely at least for me) is through inheritance. A family member passes away, and unlike the pharos of Egypt, they leave behind their worldly possessions. If the firearms are left to someone who is interested in them, they will be treated as family heirlooms and passed down from one generation to the next. If they are left to someone who is not, they will be yet more junk to sell as quickly as possible.

The most mainstream method of obtaining a firearm is by going to one’s local gun store. Typically there is a decent selection of handguns and rifles as well as the accessories you might want to add to your purchase. There is usually at least one staff member who is knowledgeable and willing to assist you in finding something that meets your needs, and if not it allows for uninterrupted window shopping. The prices are typically fair, and great deals are less likely, but in addition to the firearm you’re paying for the ability to hold and inspect it before purchase.

A gun show is another popular method of purchasing a firearm, but is generally not for the novice purchaser. The conditions and prices vary from one seller to the next, but good deals can be found by those who are patient and knowledgeable about their intended purchases.

Online purchases tend to be more for those who have openly admitted to having a firearm purchasing problem; the problem being that they are running out of space to warehouse their ever growing collection. The primary benefit of the online purchase is typically a lower purchase price, but this can be deceptive as an FFL transfer fee might also be needed before you can collect your purchase. The downside of the online purchase is that you’re purchasing an item you haven’t personally inspected. Even new firearms can have flaws or issues, so it can end up being a hassle if you’re unlucky.

Estate sales and one to one sales are yet another set of viable options that tend to be more for people in the know concerning firearms. Usually it requires some upfront effort to either find the seller of a specific firearm or tracking down the time and location of the estate sale. Good deals are once again the upside, but be sure to use a healthy dose of common sense when making one on one purchases. Always meet in well lit public places and if something feels off, walk away.

I am personally a fan of going to a local store and purchasing from them. I like the ability to handle the firearm and inspect it myself before handing over the money. In addition to wanting to see and touch the firearm, I want to ask questions about it based on things I may have read in reviews or online forums. Even if the sales person can’t answer all of my questions it brings me peace of mind. Purchasing local also helps to ensure that I’ll have a place I can go to for window shopping and pre-purchase handling firearms in the future.

What are some of the ways you’ve come to obtain your firearms? Do you prefer one method over another, or is it all the same to you so long as there’s a good deal to be had?

 

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37 mm Havoc Launchers

37 mm Havoc Launchers

One of my favorite parts of basic training was trying out the special weapons, and at the top of that list was the M203 grenade launcher. While it is possible to get one as a civilian (difficult and very expensive), there is an alternative I’ve been looking at for a little while now.

Spike’s Tactical offers two styles of picatinny rail mounted 37 mm flare launchers. One is a 12 inch standard slide breach design; the other is a 9 inch swivel breach design. Both launchers are machined from solid billet material and are composed of 6061 T-6 aircraft grade aluminum and 1018 cold rolled steel. As such, the Havoc 37 mm launchers have a cleaner look to them vs. some of the welded launchers available. With the cost of the 12 inch launcher being just under $300 and 9 inch launcher under $350, these are two well priced launchers.

Sold as is, it is a flare launcher and is not a “destructible device,” meaning that if you fire something lethal through it you’ve committed a felony. However, I’ve read that it is possible (meaning less difficult and expensive than purchasing an M203) to get a flare launcher registered as a destructive device, which would then allow you to put all kinds of fun things through a launcher such as this. Of course, you would want to do your own research to find out if this is possible where you live.

Who else would like to see one of these mounted on their rifle? Do any of you happen to have a 37 mm Havoc launcher? If you do, how do you like it?

 

 

 

 

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Concealed Carry Options

Concealed Carry Options

Between reading magazines, online forums, and stopping into local gun stores, I’ve noticed an increasing number of handguns that are designed to be highly concealable. Typically these guns feature a single stack magazine and noticeably smaller height, length, and width measurements. Included in this list would be the Berretta Nano, Walther PPS, and Smith & Wesson’s M&P Shield amongst others.

 

I like the idea of a small gun for concealed carry, but when holding one my largest concern is not having enough of the grip in my hand. For me, this in turn often results in poor shooting habits and less accuracy. With more practice this could be overcome, but if I’m spending several hundred dollars on a gun I want a comfortable feel in my hand, even if it means a slightly larger gun.

Is the physical size of your gun an important factor to you when concealed carrying? What are your thoughts on these smaller guns meant for concealed carry? Would you buy one?

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AK 47 Classic or Modern?

AK 47 Classic or Modern?

The AK-47 is an iconic weapon. Amongst other things, it is a symbol of revolution and rugged durability. As with most things, it has undergone some cosmetic changes over the years and has more variants than I care to guess at. One thing remains the same though, an AK-47 looks like an AK-47.

I’ve always been a fan of the classic look. The wood furniture just speaks to me in a way that the more modern looking ones can’t. The textures of wood and metal complement one another, and to me at least, represent man’s longing for nature in a modern world.

I’m curious to know where other people stand concerning the look of the AK-47 and its many variants. Do you prefer the classic look or the modern, and what do you like about it?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Mossberg’s M500 Flex Modular Shotgun

Mossberg’s M500 Flex Modular Shotgun

 

If you haven’t noticed from the last couple posts, shotguns are on my mind at the moment. I was reading through my May issue of Guns & Ammo and the first thing I turn to is their cover story on Mossberg’s M500 Flex modular shotgun. The concept of modular firearms interests me a lot, so after reading their article I decided to head over to Mossberg’s web page and get more info. The following is what I found over at their site.

Flexible, versatile and virtually limitless for fit, style and application. Wouldn’t everyone want a gun that is flexible enough to fit that description? Now with the innovative, patented and patent-pending Mossberg FLEX Series modular shotgun and accessory system, your Mossberg 500® or 590® pump-action shotgun can be that gun; easily converted in seconds without the need for tools. From a rugged tactical platform to a foul-weather hunting tool to a compact home defense gun, you can FLEX YOUR MOSSBERG!

At the core of this unique, adaptive system is the patented and patent-pending TLS

™ (Tool-less Locking System), a series of three connectors that allow stocks, forends and recoil pads to be switched for a variety of shooting applications or easily “custom fit” your Mossberg, regardless of the shooter’s stature. Eleven 500/590 FLEX 12-gauge shotgun base models and 16 FLEX accessory components will be offered initially. Adding to the versatility is Mossberg’s extensive line of 500/590 accessory barrels which are compatible with FLEX shotgun systems.

Start by choosing a FLEX shotgun base model from three 500 All-Purpose, four 500/590 Tactical and four 500 Hunting options; each with 12-gauge, 3-inch chambers. Select 500 FLEX All-Purpose and 500 FLEX Hunting shotguns feature Mossberg’s patent-pending LPA

™ (Lightning Pump Action™) Adjustable Trigger System. This revolutionary trigger system, a first for pump-action shotguns, is user-adjustable from 3 to 8 pounds with an Allen wrench and provides a rifle-like, creep-free trigger pull.

FLEX All-Purpose models come with 26 or 28-inch vent rib, ACCU-CHOKE™ ported barrels with matte metal finishes or optional all-weather Marinecote™ finish; full-length synthetic stock fit with our medium recoil pad (14 ½-inch LOP); and standard synthetic forend. Both constructed of durable synthetic with black matte finish. FLEX 500/590 Tactical models are available with matte, OD Green and Coyote Tan finishes on barrels and receivers; tactical tri-rail forends which can accommodate a touchpad; stock options that include standard synthetic (14 ½-inch LOP), six-position adjustable tactical or pistol grip; and cylinder bore 18 ½-inch stand-off barrel or 20-inch barrel with 6-round total capacity or 9-round total capacity with the 590 Tactical. FLEX Hunting models are available with 24 or 28-inch vent rib barrels and choice of OD Green, Coyote Tan, Mossy Oak® Break-Up® Infinity™ or Realtree MAX-4® camo receiver finishes. Standard full-length stocks and forends feature Infinity or MAX-4 finishes as well. Now that you have selected your base model, it’s easy to FLEX YOUR MOSSBERG!

Without tools, your FLEX shotgun can easily be purpose-built with a wide range of Mossberg accessories that feature the TLS connector system. These include three recoil pads (3/4-inch, 1 ¼-inches and 1 ½-inches thick); four synthetic forends (three standard and one tactical tri-rail); and nine stock options. Choose from our standard full-length stocks with 12 ½, 13 ½ and 14 ¼-inch LOPs; pistol grip; six-position adjustable tactical stock; and four-position adjustable, dual-comb hunting stock. Forends and stocks feature black matte, Break-Up Infinity and MAX-4 finishes. Your options are endless with this modular system.

Don’t forget that at the core of this system is the legendary 500/590 pump-action platform with its field proven design featuring non-binding twin action bars; positive steel-to-steel lock-up and anti-jam elevator for smooth, reliable operation; anodized aluminum receiver; and universally-recognized ambidextrous top-mounted safety. The base platform of this ultimate, adaptive shotgun is rugged, reliable and comes with a ten-year limited warranty.

Mossberg’s FLEX Series shotgun specifications table was too large to post up, but the price range was between $593-$826 depending on the setup. I was able to post their accessories table though to give you an idea of cost.

Mossberg FLEX Series Accessories Specifications:ITEM DESCRIPTION MSRP
95210 FLEX Recoil Pad Assembly – 3/4 inch (SMALL) $24
95211 FLEX Recoil Pad Assembly – 1 1/4 inch (MEDIUM) $24
95212 FLEX Recoil Pad Assembly – 1 1/2 inch (LARGE) $36
95213 FLEX Tactical Tri-Rail Forend – Black $46
95214 FLEX Standard Forend – Black $34
95216 FLEX Standard Forend – MOBU Infinity $46
95217 FLEX Standard Forend – Realtree MAX-4 $46
95218 FLEX Pistol Grip – Black $29
95219 FLEX 6-Position Adjustable Stock – Black $108
95221 FLEX 4-Position Adjustable Hunting Stock with Dual Comb – Black $145
95222 FLEX 4-Position Adjustable Hunting Stock with Dual Comb – MOBU Infinity $156
95223 FLEX Standard Stock 12 ½-inch LOP – Black (Compact) $77
95224 FLEX Standard Stock 14 ¼-inch inch LOP – Black (Full-Length) $77
95226 FLEX Standard Stock 13 ½-inch LOP – Black (Medium) $77
95227 FLEX Standard Stock 13 ½-inch LOP – MOBU Infinity (Medium) $96
95228 FLEX Standard Stock 13 ½-inch LOP Realtree MAX-4 (Medium) $96

Mossberg encourages you to, “FLEX YOUR MOSSBERG with the newest, most-innovative concept in shotgun customization!” What I would be interested to know is how many of you are interested in purchasing a modular shotgun? With the KSG on the market and the UTS-15 scheduled to arrive shortly, is Mossberg’s M500 Flex modular shotgun both interesting and competitive enough to attract you and your wallet?

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UTS-15 Tactical Shotgun Update

UTS-15 Tactical Shotgun Update

A recent news release has further confirmed Jeff Compoc’s March, 2011 blog concerning the UTS-15 tactical shotgun, plus provided a little more info.

In case you missed Compoc’s entry, the UTS-15 tactical shotgun is a close-quarters 12 ga. pump action shotgun with two 7-round alternately feeding or selectable magazine tubes; it measures 28.3” in overall length with a 18.5” barrel, chambers for 2 3/4” and 3” magnum ammunition. It weighs in at 6.9 lbs as a result of it being constructed primarily of fiber reinforced injection molded polymer (over 80-percent) and 100-percent polymer receiver. The shotgun requires no tools for field stripping, which takes about 60 seconds.

A top mounted picatinny rail will allow for mounting both iron and optical sights; coupled with Beretta style barrel threading for choke tubes makes the UTS-15 an incredibly versatile shotgun (sights and choke tube pictured not included). An optional built-in LED spotlight and laser night-sight provides point-and-shoot night-fighting capability.

Currently manufactured in Turkey and being sold to the civilian market outside the U.S., the shotgun will be available stateside in late spring once production in the U.S. is underway. MSRP is expected to be around $1,200.

Between the KSG and UTS-15, which way are you leaning?

 

 

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Kel Tec KSG 12 Gauge Shotgun Preview

Kel Tec KSG 12 Gauge Shotgun Preview

Although its 2011 end of year release was delayed, the KSG is now being shipped. Jeff Compoc gave us a a great glimpse of Kel-Tec’s KSG back in January 2011, and much of this shotgun remains the same.

The Good:
•Kel-Tec has corrected a previous flaw relating to trigger reset.
•Slits have been added to the magazines to show if there is ammo in them.
•The price in stores should be in the mid $500-$600 range.

The Bad:
•The magazine selector switch is still far behind the trigger, which makes transitions from one magazine to the other awkward.

The Ugly:
•At this point there has been at least one report of the lower picatinny rail breaking while equipped with a vertical forward grip. The specifics of how and why have not yet been answered, but an issue such as this is not one you want to be hearing about after a delayed release.

Final Thoughts:
Despite the possible rail issue and awkward selector switch I’m still eagerly waiting to find one in stock at my local shop, or better yet at the firing range. Has anyone else had a chance to lay their hands on one of these yet?

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