In 2013 we saw the launch of the Tru-Spec Simple Tactical product line and considering how well it has sold so far I expect that there will be a womens line and possible a few more colors. The Simple Tactical product line is basically a mild tactical pant that probable has 40% fewer pockets if you compare it to 5.11 or other Tru-Spec tactical pants, namely the 24/7 series. That’s a really nice pant for $39.95 and sometimes you can get them cheaper especially during the 1,2,3 sales that Tru-Spec has done atleast 2x’s. Some people don’t like particular waistbands and the Simple tactical is more stretch. You will notice that those will be tru to your waist size and you won’t be able to stow gear is pretend you are really a smaller waist.
This year we took on a few 5.11 products which we normally stayed away from but now that Woolrich Elite Series Tactical is no longer making their product line, we brought in the 5.11 covert Khaki 2.0 which is a good improvement over the regular Cover Khaki. These pants are now the least tactical pants we (looking that is) and after washing an wearing I didn’t notice any of the shrinkage that so many of our customers complain about. I guess 5.11 put a little more quality into their white color tactical clothing. We’re still testing out various types of shirts to see if we can find anything anywhere near as nice as the Woolrich Elite Series concealed carry shirts. We really missed that product line.
I recently got off the phone with a customer that told me we shipped him the wrong scope and the reticle he has on his optic was green and not amber. We took out several of the optics we had to see if Trijicon might have come out with a new scope reticle and we discovered that they had not. We did a quick quality control to see if something freeky happened and came to the conclusion that the customer was wrong. The thing that people don’t understand with red dots, Eotechs, night sights ect are that it’s really about contrast. You don’t need night sights during the day because it’s already light, you need night sights in low light or total darkness, but depending on how long the light is, you might want brighter imagery. There are always issues when moving from indoors to outdoor with a scope right and thats why varying power on a rifle or shotgun sight is a good idea.
I rarely adjust the settings on my Eotech 512 but I have plenty of friends that told me they had them on full brightness when they were outside in the desert. I recently did a comparison between Eotech sights and the new Trijicon SRS sight and fell right back in love with my Eotech. Considering all of the changes I have seen in the Surefire and Streamlight flashlights where the candle power is up about 85% which is a huge leap forward. Solar panels and battery storage is way up and I expect to see something very new in these regards with Eotech sights. I am a big fan of the EXPS sights and the red dot and 65 MOA dot get picked up by my eyes very well. I don’t see this changing anytime soon for my primary CQC optics.
New this fall we will be bringing on the Aimpoint and Fobus product lines into our 1500 sqft tactical store along with several items from Tru-Spec and Warwick Mills. We have dealt with several distributors over the last 9yrs and it’s gotten to the point that instead of waiting for stock to arrive, and have to deal with fighting over inventory from other dealers, it was time to start stocking the stuff directly. There are always changes and improvements to product lines and not getting stuck with a dud product or making sure you have the newest version of something is very important. Just this year alone we saw some major improvements to our holster and tazer product lines and LED Technology for flashlights has improved by about 85%. Sometimes holster companies don’t have the accessories up to date with the batons, flashlights, magazine pouches ect that people want.
There have been situations where we have asked customers to look into getting a customer kydex holster becaues there needs were beyond what many manufacturers could make. Many of our Law Enforcement sometimes have an issue with a holster breaking and just need a quick fix for a range day and that is often where Fobus Holsters come in. I have a Fobus holster for every Glock firearm, Sig Sauer 228, 229 and Sig 220 that I own. There are some retention holsters that I may look into picking up since we are a direct dealer now. The new E2 holster has more flexability when it comes to adjusting your retention which was a common complaint about some of the earlier paddle holsters.
Wilson Combat Magazines
The first thing I said to myself when we started carrying the ETM magazines was “why would I bother” and then I looked up the info and reviews about them and found out that it was really all about competition shooting more than it was about another reliable 1911 magazine. The Wilson combat magazines are the most expensive magazines that we sell for the 1911 but in the 16yrs I’ve been using them, I have had a very long and good experience in using them. I have seen people crack them but I have never had that happen, over time and magazine is going to wear out and even the Magpul pmags I have in my inventory have shown some cracks after about 8yrs. The best thing about the Wilson magazines for the 1911 are that the followers are very well balanced. They move up and down without tilting which makes a very big difference when feeding FMJ into the throat of a 1911 handgun.
Rotating your magazine in your inventory is very important if you want to keep on top of your reliability. For people that are shooting thousands of rounds of ammunition through their guns each year, knowing when you need to change out the springs on your Wilson Combat magazines before they start to fail is really a good policy. I have a few other parts on my Colt 1991A1 that could use some checkups on but I’ll probable take it to a gunsmith to replace hammer springs ect. I have not run hollow point ammunition through my 1911s in a long time, but to prevent over penetration I probable should do some research into getting some of the
I don’t know the answers to all of the 1911 magazine questions but I do know that standard GI magazines are really not the best thing to run in a 1911 if you are carrying for protection. I have a ton of them I use for range mags but they don’t hold up very long. GI magazines are meant to be throw aways, and if you compare them to the M9 magazines, there is an obvious durability difference. I’ve replaced springs and followers on magazines and it’s really been worth all of the efforts. On something like a Glock magazine or a Magpul Pmag, I’ve replaced magazine springs and occasionally a follower. Some gun magazines are so inexpensive that you might as well just toss them rather than have to tweak it the whole time.
It’s always good to keep your eyes open for manufacturers that have good warranties and the Chip McCormick 1911 magazines that we sell are good about that. I guess the thing that Chip McCormick magazines knows is there are finicky 1911 guns out there and if there mag doesn’t work in your gun they’ll replace it. The Chip McCormick power mags are really the ones you want to use if you are putting a lot of lead downrange. The 8rd magazines are really the most common for CCW and even though the 1911 was issues with 7rd magazine, I have personally had no reliability issues with any of the 8rd power mags that I have. The Chip McCormick 10rd magazines are very popular for IDPA and Competition shooters but they do throw off the balance of a 1911 in my opinion.
With so many changes taking place to firearms these days, it’s hard to keep up with all of the gun designs, Desantis Holsters has options for full size, medium size autos and many of the popular .380 CCW guns. The firearm industry has grown so much in regards to concealed carry and holster makers have had to really stay on top of the demand for .380 caliber pistols. We are a stocking dealer for Desantis holsters and our most popular Leather gun holsters. Desantis has a holster for you if you are carrying a small compact firearm like the Ruger LCP or if you are looking for a traditional leather shoulder holster. The Desantis Scabbard with thumbreak is still a popular holster for Law Enforcement and Under Cover police. The Speed Scabbard is basically the same holslter without the thumb snap retention. Desantis inside the waist holsters are also available in different types of material. Desantis also has ankle holsters and Kydex holsters. Large frame guns like the Beretta 92 or Glock 21 need a lot of support and balance due to their size and weight.
The Desantis Thumbreak scabbard is still one of our most popular Detective and Law Enforcement holsters and even though there are Safariland holsters and Blackhawk Serpa holsters in wide use, thumb break holsters are still in use. There are always varying degrees of retention in gun holsters but Desantis holsters has their staple of leather holsters, but so-tuck holsters for the Smith & wesson bodyguard and Diamondback .380 pistols are in wide use for off duty Law Enforcement. My personal preference is the Desantis Speed Scabbard due to it’s 2 position belt options and the fact there is no need for me to use any retention, it is an excellent outside the pants holster, and the Desantis gun belts are a good match for any medium or large frame semi-auto.
There are plenty of options to think about when you are putting an optic on your AR15, and i’m going to assume that this is why you are hear reading about this blog. There are Eotech sights like the 512 which are combat reliable and not very expensive, and if you shop around, you might be able to pick one up for under $400. The Aimpoint optics are also extremely durable and the Aimpoint Pro are under $400. Magnification is the biggest thing you really want to think about from the start. If you think you will be able to cough up the money for an RMR sight in the future, then a TA01NSN might be a nice starting point because you atleast get 2 sights in one. Iron sights for close up fighting and a 4x fixed optic with bullet calibration.
I know a lot of guys that run the TA01NSN because they don’t like the fiber optic strands that run across the top, those are considered to be high profile and not low profile optics. I would probable say that the Trijicon TA01NSN for sale is the most verstatile ACOG because you get the 2 sights in one, plus you have the illuminated reticle in low light. Some people, or should i say many people, prefer the crosshairs of this reticle type over the Chevron or the donut styles. All reticles have a primary job and some are more versatile than others. The thin lines of the TA01NSN make it a very precise optic. The ones we sell all come with a thumb screw mount and if you want to later on, do some research into which type of RMR sights you might want to run on your gun. The red dot and reticles are very different so do your research and read reviews on the product.
This year was a very successful year for us in the Delaware County area in launching our tactical store and we double the size of our business in the first 6 months. People are still finding out about us via word of mouth whenever they need a new holster, police boots or even just Ambulance companies hiring and people needing to get a pair of pants. Much of the product line we stock in our store is for people to checkout instead of buying it online. Duty gear like handcuff keys and various police belts are things that people in the Law Enforcement industry lose or wear out over time and are always in need of. Police vests, tactical pants, uniform pants, belts, hydration unites, SWAT team bags are things that are always wearing out and need to be replaced.
We’ve learned there are so many types of handcuffs, swivel and hinged doesn’t always narrow it down, some are different weights and types of metal. The items we have brought in this year are the Safariland lightweight handcuffs and in our region there are no Philadelphia Police Supplies shops around here and many of our Law Enforcement Officers are very happy to see a business like this open up. Tactical vests, body armor are all things people need to be sized up on and this is something that has to be done right so that there are fewer returns. We stock a large number of Blackhawk serpa holsters, safariland products, pepper spray, mace, tasers, batons, police badge holders and more and more duty gear.
We’ve been selling the Tru-Spec tactical clothing line for several years now, just about 2yrs to be exact and we have been learning about all of their tactical clothing, from the materials they use in them, to the features that they have built into them. The thing we really love about the Atlanco Corporation is that they are really showing support for their dealers and the product pricing is very competitive. We are always getting asked if we want to carry various product lines like, 5.11, Blackhawk, Vertx and many more, but from our standpoint, we want to the least negative feedback from our customers and the lower returns due to unhappy customers. The Tru-Spec 24/7 series is still a growing product line, but the polyester blend is the preference our Law Enforcement customers want.
Last Fall we ran the Tru-Spec softshell jacket promotion that we basically aimed at our Law Enforcement Clientele. The Tru-Spec Jackets that we move the most are the softshell tactical jackets. These give you excellent water resistance with a very cool tactical look and this jacket is by far the most versatile out layer we sell. Versatile in meaning that this jacket is not too heavy that you need to take it off if it gets hot, these will breath very well and can be worn in most Fall and Spring temperature variations. In many parts of the Country you don’t need a very heavy jacket, and most rain gear doesn’t breath like this so you don’t un-necessarily sweat up a storm. We have excellent reviews from our customers about this jacket and the only negatives are from guys that are too big to fit in them in the first place.
Like all of the holster and apparel question, the next question all of the new gun carriers are the “do you have a good belt” which means they need a stiff belt so the holster doesn’t ruin it. I like many, learned by making mistakes or just not having the information at hand to make the right decisions. I still have a few belts in the house that are obvious early gun belts because they all have the holster crunch. There are differences in gun belts, you want a stiff belt but some belts can be too stiff and feel like you have a hula hoop around your waste. Even the Blackhawk pistol belts that we sold were discontinued for a slightly less stiff design. The Desantis gun belts are more money but had a better reputation. We are waiting to get the new Blackhawk Pistol belts and get them to our customers for feedback.
The quick fixes for gun belts are the Elite Survival Cobra belts and the Wilderness belts. The belts have different buckles or ways to latch but The Wilderness belts that we stock have been our primary for almost 9yrs now. Lots of people are shocked to drive up to our Broomall, PA showroom and find a tactical store that actually stocks them. I personally have used them for almost 15yrs and the support they give is excellent. I first started out carrying a 1911 and that did a job on my previous gun belts but it was very easy to forget that you had a gun own you because the support was so good.