There are plenty of people out there that stock piled various firearm magazines in the last 2 years, especially after the Connecticut shooting when everyone thought that President Obama would have the Political climate to ban the AR15. I won’t ask all of you reading this, to raise your hands if you actually thought that would happen. I found it embarrassing to watch people panic. I had a friend who recently picked up his first AR15 a Colt 6920 and got a pretty good deal but it looked like it was sitting around for awhile from a Y2K panic buy, apparently the seller had large quantities of magazines for sale and he asked if it was a good deal.
I told him to buy whatever he wanted but if he was buying large quantities of them he better test them out before he thinks they are all going to work in his AR. Gun magazines are like wine, they need to be store properly, and all are made on different dates. There is truth to the fact that a Magpul Pmag will not be durable 30yrs from now just based on it’s material break down, and metal magazines won’t if stored properly, but how bad is your outlook on life if you have to worry about that? If you got a good buy on bulk magazines take atleast a half dozen of them and test them on the range and make sure they drop free, rotate the magazines when you use them, and when they need to be tossed out, open up the packaged ones and test them out again. Don’t expect the brand spankin newly wrapped magazines to work, I’ve one too many times seen people have issues with magazine dropp
There was a transition away from the high capacity or should I say, Standard capacity firearms back in the late 1990’s after the AWB of 1994, but it was mostly because the cost of a gun magazine might have gone up 200% or more. You could easily spend $1000 for a firearm and magazines depending on what it was. Once thing that I will that will never change is balance and speed. I think we have recently witnessed the pinnacle of the M4 Carbine accessorizing craze because now we are seeing more and more that people are wanting lighter carbines and 15 lbs AR15 variants is something that really doesn’t help you out in close quarters gun fights, speed does m ore than what optics you have in close up fighting.
When it comes to caliber and capacity, you really need to put some thought into how much weight you want in a firearm especially a handgun. I’ve shot some double stack 45acp handguns that were so heavy that taking them in and out of holster felt like I was wielding a ball and chain. Throw in spare gun magazines and the bulk and weight can quickly become extreme. The Springfield XD is a nice 45acp gun, but the balance of a 1911 or even the Sig 220 seem to handle better. And lets not forget, the reason for a handgun is to fight your way back to a rifle, so why bother trying to carry all that handgun ammo.
That is a question we get quite often around here and we always throw a question back to a customer. People call or show up wanting us to give them advice but there are a lot of liabilities in telling people what to get or do. So much of gun accessories and firearms has to do with the job at hand and a persons gun skills. I’ve heard people claim that you can’t shoot long range with a 5.56 gun but I see it done all the time at local gun clubs. Sure there are instances of high wind where a 5.56 bullet isn’t going to do very well, but sometimes only a 50 bmg is going to get the job done.
Even the trusty and reliable Mini 14 is an often over looked hunting Carbine, but I’ve seen white tails taken up in Vermont with 75gr expanding rounds. The 6.8SPC would be a more powerful round than what the military is using today but it’s not really going to solve all of your problems. Most of my friends that own them are using them for hunting rounds and not even for Carbine training ect. The only problem you may run into when changing uppers in with the gun magazines. The 5.56 round is better than any handgun round if you use the right kind of ammunition and the AR15 platform gives you lots of caliber options that are really best for upgrading your gun for better hunting.
Today I was listening to a local talk radio host who had a local reporter on and they were talking about the Flash Mob stuff that was going on there. In some people’s minds these incidences are not racial, but that is absolutely absurd. We’ve had at least 3 mob incidences against young white males or old white men and it’s always black on white. In some camps of our society, racism only applies to things that a white man can do and not the other way around. Racism exists in all societies and cultures but only those living in the world that Political correctness has created think it only exists when a victim is black.
One of the callers challenged the local news writer about what the news article would be if a gun owner shot one or more of these individuals when they were committing the crime. The news reporter basically said it at this point it would say something about a “gun owner defends against a mob” I’m paraphrasing, but I thing it was bullshit. We know that if a gun owner shot one of these individuals and reloaded with using spare gun magazines that it would be excessive or bull shit that someone that trained to shoot shot 5 or 6 of the criminals and it was unfair that someone would do that against un armed youth. Considering the ages groups of some of these Flash mobs it would probable not sound justified if a 65yr old man shot 11yr-19yr olders, but the reality is it may well be if things keep up like this.
I have never really liked the feel of having a pistol magazine protrude out of the bottom of the gun unless it is because the gun grip is too small for me. I’ve seen a few of my friends do this on their Glocks, namely the Glock 26 because it is such a small gun. I did put an extension on a Sig 239 which is the only gun I currently own that has this. The first gun that I owned was a Colt 1991A1 and it only came with one pistol magazine. It was a Colt magazine which i thought would be the best gun magazine to have, but that turned out to not be true. After having a few problems with the slide stop not catching, I found out the magazine tab was bending and causing the issue.
I believe it was at a gun show that I picked up 2 Wilson Combat magazines and my Colt 1991A1 ran flawlessly with ball ammo. The gun magazines really ran well with hollow point ammunition but I found the gun to be too picky with hollow point ammo that I pretty much gave up on worrying about it. If you look at the velocity that a 45acp is flying at, I don’t think you’ll have massive over penetration issues compared to 9mm ball. Wilson combat magazines have varying base pads and from my experience this is mostly a concern for competition shooters. If the magazine drops free I don’t need to worry about gripping it and pulling it out for a fast reload.
There has been much debate about the 45acp use in handguns. With the number of shootings I have seen where 9mm bullets were used, I’d have to say that the 9mm is definitely not a powerful round, but I have heard of bad guys taking multiple hits from an M4 that kept on coming, so there are many things that can come into play. The 1911 has remained a popular gun and not because it is the most reliable weapon in 45acp. I have come to the conclusion that the modern polymer guns are superior to metal guns as far as durability and reliability, but many of them do have crappy triggers.
When the Springfield XD first came out, it was a big deal for 1911 guys to find something that wasn’t a DA/SA handgun and didn’t have a sponge trigger like Glocks do. You can get a lot of improvement in reliability with a 1911 with good gun magazines like Wilson Combat or Chip McCormick. I have respect for Glocks, but they do have an odd feel to them and are not traditional. The XD 45acp felt more natural to a 1911 enthusiast and brought them into the modern world. The 1911 still has one of the best triggers, but it is not in the same category as some of the guns being made in 45acp these days. I have several Sig 220 that have been extremely reliable, but Glock has an edge over them as far as endurace.
I think this past year may have been the year of the .380 pistol. I don’t know exactly why everyone went with the .380 this year, but it was popular and considering the run on the ammunition and it’s lack of availability, I think I should have purchased some stock in .380 and not just gold. I recently attended a Taurus firearm event where the TCP .380 was being shown. When I think of .380 guns I believe that up until this year, I could only think of the Sig Sauer 230 and the Sig 232 and the Walther PPK. I have enough friends that like the look of the PPK but were not a fan of the gun due to the hammer bite. If you have big hands that gun is most likely not for you.
The TCP was a little finicky about the ammo it ate, but I have shot several of the Rohrbaugh R9 pistols and they were also very picky about the ammo they ate. When you get down to those small semi-auto guns, you better put the range time in to know the limitations of the guns. You won’t get a pocket pistol that will run for hundreds of rounds without needing to change springs or be lubricated. Rotating your gun magazines is a must for smaller semi-autos. The .380 is also a very mild round and I witnessed first hand the lack of energy it had when shooting steel plates. I watched a recent video where I heard 4 shots fired, one miss, 3 hits and the metal plate only fell one time. Be realistic about the guns you are carrying and and why.
I finally did my rounds and checked out a few local 5.11 dealers to see what they had in stock. Something I always find annoying about stopping in these places is how much of a mess the clothing usually is. I always have to dig around for my sizes and rarely do any of these gun shops or police and security stores keep there crap together. The other thing that I find annoying is that so many of them clear out certain styles of clothing during the year like there is a non-season for polos and jeans. Some of these tactical clothing manufacturers are running huge shortages and various products are out of stock for 6-9 months at a time. I actually noticed many of the gun shops in my neck of the woods stopped selling 5.11 tactical pants because it was too much of a headache for them to deal with.
It was time to restock my tactical pants inventory and I’m not prone to sticking to only one manufacturer. I have worn 5.11 tactical pants, Eotac, Woolrich Elite and even SigTac. Each tactical clothing company and tactical gear manufacturer has it’s pros and cons, but I’d give Eotac and Woolrich Elite the edge on quality control. I am comparing the Eotac 205 concealed carry jeans to the 5.11 jeans and there is no comparison. I feel a difference in the movement of each jean, but I really don’t think I feel restricted in any way. They are both well made, but there are huge differences in the designs. The Eotac jeans are very similar to the Woolrich Elite Discreet MKII pants, but they are definitely not the same. The 5.11 jeans are what I’d call more for deep concealment. There are internal pockets that can hold a j-frame revolver or a small semi-auto and a few spare magazines. I find the pockets to be a little too deep and don’t really like the fact the guns are practically inside the pants. I tried putting a Sig 239 in the pockets with spare magazines and it was extremely uncomfortable when sitting down, so I would have to say you need something smaller than that.
I was fortunate to attend a sniper competition a few years ago where I must have learned more about combat than every before. About 40 students were attending this training competition even and given the rules for attending the match. Everyone was told to arrive with unloaded firearms, but to keep all of their gear in the cars and attend a safety briefing. Well, one of the best events for this competition/training even occurred in the first 30 seconds after the safety briefing. Everyone was asked if they understood all of the safety rules and when everyone said yes, it began. The Instructor explained the first stage of the shooting event. Everyone was told to grab their gear from their car and immediately return to the firing line, unload the gear and engage the targets. The attendees gave us a big smile while the students/competitors did an “Oh, Shit!”
I sat and watched every student run back to their car which was about 15-30yds behind the firing line, I noticed varying types of rifle cases and rifle bags, some shooters showed up with loaded magazines and others had to manually load the guns, as soon as they were ready to shoot, they engaged the targets. I believe they had 6 minutes to take down all of the targets from 100-200yds. The variations in time to engage the enemy targets varied by several minutes. Anyone that had a M4 Carbine or 30rd magazine that didn’t have loaded gun magazines or didn’t have a speed loader, was the last to engage the targets. I saw only 2 people out of 40 engage the targets in the first 5 minutes. Maglula speed loaders are must for anyone serious about using a carbine for self defense, unless you have the military style loaders.
Last year I had the fortunate experience to actually hunt in a State that allowed the use of a semi-auto rifle. In Pennsylvania we are retricted to bolt actions and lever actions, but I often wanted to take one of my Ruger Mini 14 rifles out to that part of the Country and use it for it’s best purposes. The Ruger Ranch rifle is a great lightweight hunting Carbine that isn’t bulky and can easily and comfortable hold 5rds in the magazine. I’ve done enough hunting in the rest of the Country to know that when you really get out there, you really have to be aware of your own safety and having the right kind of ammo with you means that that little .223 Carbine is capable of killing anything from a prairie dog to a black bear. I have seen pictures of black bear being taken with M4 Carbines in other parts of the Country with Black Hills 77gr, most were taken under 75yds, but that still gives you a realistic view what the caliber is capable of.
There were issues with finding reliable 20rd and 30rd magazines for the Sturm Ruger Carbine, but now that the 1994 AWB is over, even Ruger is selling them for their guns to the open public, but getting back to hunting, the 5rd magazines are more practical because shooting from a rest or cover is easier with a less protruding gun magazine. I would suggest that with the popular 1-9 twist rate on the Mini 14, you try the Seirra 60gr HP for varmint and go with a 75gr A-max for deer or bear. Remember that effective range is going to deminish with the heavier bullets and I would not suggest anything over 200yds unless you have a longer barrel bolt action.