All posts tagged Tango Down

Combat guns and plinking guns and just having fun

I remember all of those times I spent arguing with people on gunboards about which gun was better and which guns were pieces of junk.   I started out collecting many of the Soviet era military style rifles, namely the SKS rifles.   There are some fun accessories from Tapco that can make even an old relic like an SKS into a more modern looking rifle, but even if it’s not an AK, you can always customize the firearm to your liking.   I wouldn’t expect to use an SKS for house to house clearing, but if you got it for $200 and want to improve the fit to your liking, go right ahead.

One problem I have found with many of the semi-autos I owned was that the length of pull on the guns was very short.  This was not something I go too worked up about with the plinking firearms I owned, but for a primary weapon, the rifle stocks you use on them should fit you like a glove.   Customizing a firearm to fit you is an important step in learning how to effectively use a firearm.   I have learned that the hard way with various rifle scopes that ended up putting a ring around my eye because the stock was so short, I forgot to adjust my bean and got a good thunk.  There is nothing wrong with changing the butt pad on any gun you own to fit you.  Just be aware that when you are wearing a heavy coat or winter clothing that LOP might need to be shorter, so don’t modify your stocks too much, and think about an adjusteable stock for just that purpose.


Bans on gun stocks and accessories

I feel sorry for some of the people that are gun owners and are presently stepping into the word of AR15, AK or Mini 14 ownership for the first time and live in anti-gun States.  I have had some really bizarre conversations with friends in California and New Jersey that had to take AR15 or FAL gun magazines and have blocks welded into them so they couldn’t take more than 10rds.  To some people these sounds like a good thing, but the real problem is  you are taking something that is functional at a certain operating system and potentially messing the whole thing up.  Magazine capacity restrictions are like putting smaller gas tanks on cars to keep people from speeding.   The other problems that many in New Jersey or California and other States run into are gun accessories like flash hiders or folding stocks, these are all usually banned.

I find the whole issue about bans on gun accessories like bayonets and folding stocks to basically be about people trying to put band aids on your kids body parts where there is no bleeding expecting to stop another person from beating him or her up.    Nobody wants to talk about how most gun crime is from the drug trade which basically is a self inflicted problem due to our Federal Government getting involved.    Gun accessories like, bayonets, flash hiders, folding stocks,  collapsing rifle stocks have no bearing on reducing crime and putting people who are a threat to society in jail for long periods of time would have more impact on reducing crime than making law abiding citizens block 20rd magazines so they can only hold 10.


gun grips and bare hands

As we progress into the tactical accessories market, the more we realize that when we make  one change to a firearm there is a good chance we may have to make another.   For example, there are a lot of rifle scope and rifle stocks  out there, but one may feel too short in the summer when we are wearing a t-shirt, and the other may feel too long if we are wearing a heavy coat.   I still laugh when I hear people say that the AK was built for short people, when the reality was that it was designed for people wearing winter clothing, and that’s why the stocks are so short.

The M4 carbine stock is designed for people that are wearing body armor and may not fit into your shoulder very well if you are not wearing any.   These are minor things to think about, but just as we think about the type of holster we are wearing, we should think about what kind rifle stocks, and how we are going to be shouldering and using a Carbine or Rifle.   Anyone that has gone on any extensive hunting trip will gladly get rid of an extra 2-3 lbs of weight if they can which is why so many prefer a Mini 14 for hunting over a 5rd AR15 type of rifle.


Combat rifle scopes and a backup plan

When you mount your rifle scope, please do some research on how to properly level and mount it.  A properly mounted combat optic should not be over torqued and should have loctite on the screws.  I have yet to see a mount come loose on a gun that used loctite.   When you go out an spend $1000 on a combat rifle scope, ask yourself, what will you do and how will you remove the scope and aim it if the optic goes down.   If one your Trijicon rifle scopes takes a bullet, are you going to be able to see through it and still be able to lay down effective fire if you can’t see through it?  Even if you have a rifle scope that does not allow for co-witness, would it be a good idea to still attach flip up sights to the gun if there is room for them?  Always have a backup plan for your defensive carbine.

The vast majority of M4 Carbines I see at the range have optics that are top of the line.    Aimpoint and Eotech along with the Trijicon ACOG are probable the top 3.   All of these are good for a certain purpose which is mostly for close up fighting.   The Trijicon ACOG is more of a medium range combat optic depending on the type of reticle you choose.   They do have a line of red dot or even green dot optic options, also.   If you are are a weekend warrior and new to defensive shooting and tactical gear, I would suggest you think about this next statement, whenever you attach an accessory to your Carbine, think about what you would do if that accessory mount broke or the actual item failed.



Need a suggestion on which gun for home defense?

rifle stocksIf you are thinking about buying your first gun for inside the home, there is no better option than a shotgun.    Some rookie gun shopper may think a shotgun is too powerful, but the reality is there is no better defensive weapon that can be so versatile when it comes to projectile ballistics.  The difference in bullet penetration between a shotgun slug and size 9 shot is tremendous.  Both are incredible leathal at close ranges, but energy is lost very quickly which is an assett in close situations.   Due to modern home construction, there is no better reasoning than to consider what happens to a bullet if it misses the target or if it happens to hit the target and still go on.   There is a saying that there is a lawyer attached to every bullet that exits your gun if it is used in a defensive situation and this very true.

I think the notion of having an Elmer Fudd type of shotgun for home defense is a funny idea, but it’s a very practical defensive weapon.   If you have access to plenty of ammo, shotguns can be reloaded quite easily.   The reality is a pump shogun is a better option due to magazine capacity, but I always warn people that pump shotguns need to be operated properly and people need to understand that they can be very difficult to operate in certain positions.   Short stroking them can also be a problem for a less trained operator, so don’t hand one off to a novice without giving them training.   The Remington 870 has always been my primary shotgun recommendation, but that’s mostly because they can be found for under $250 used, and with just a few bucks  more, a side saddle or magazine tube extension can increase your firepower.   There are also many rifle stocks and accessories that you can mount on them, but please keep in mind that smaller operators will not function as well with heavy guns.  Keep it simple and be practical.


Do we all wear the same size gloves?

rifle stocksAnd the answer is no, we do not, so why do people expect us to be able to shoulder the same size rifles or grip the same size handguns comfortable?  Even if you’re a guy, you’re not all built the same, and luckily the military has caught on to this.    If I had a nickel for every WWII vet I know that made a comment on how big the Garand was and how many of them had trouble shooting one, I’d be rich.   The M1 Garand is a very accurate and powerful rifle, but not everyone could hand them.   If you field a rifle of the same caliber today, and allowed people to adjust the stock for their comfort, recoil issues go away.

In the last few months I’ve had a lot of consultation with new gun owners about home defense weapons and assessing how they could be deployed and used within their homes.   Many of them always thought about handguns being used in their homes and never rifles but there are carbines with rifle stocks that use the same rounds as the pistols.  Everyone seems to think that a rifle is too much or too hard to manage, but now that pistol caliber Carbines are so prevailant.  Why not.    I prefer to mount lights on rifles rather than handguns, and I also know that most novice shooters will be safer and more proficient with a Carbine over a handgun.   At the very least, a rifle is easier to retain and become a baseball bat than a handgun.   Please keep in mind that bullet selection is extremely important when deciding on a Carbine or rifle in your home.   There are some very well thought out M4 rifle stocks, Beretta Storm, and shotgun stocks that are very good for home defense.


Upgrades and Doodads

Tactical GearIn the early 1990s there was a surplus of military style rifles coming into the Country.   There were goofy thumbhole stocks to avoid violating gun laws or cheap parts for kits.   Many of these rifles had pretty ugle stocks especially many of the rifles coming in from China or Egypt.   If you have one of those MAK90s or Maadis that works great, but looks like crap, you might want to upgrade your stock with a synthetic.   Many of these stocks are made in the US and can be considered US Parts to add to your legal alterations of your gun.

One of the best and easiest upgrades for any of your Chinese or Russian guns is a Fiberforce stock for your SKS.  The SKS is one of the better balanced guns that the Soviet Bloc states put out and the Fiberforce stock won’t offset that.  There is even a folding stock version that might help you if you want this as a truck gun or want to save some room in your safe.    For AR15 accessories, you can go nuts on AR15 upgrades, but think about what you really want on your gun before you just start buying, try handling your buddies guns before you just order pistol grips that you don’t really know much about or how they really feel.  Everyones hand is different and not all grips will work for you.  You can mess up the balance of your gun if you throw a heavy rail on it, especially if you don’t really need much tactical gear on your gun, why do it.


Rail Panels? Is the necessary?

Tango Down Rail PanelWell, I found out the hard way or should I say the sore way.    I picked a Midwest 4 rail handguard a few  years ago and loved the thing.   I didn’t have the need to use all of the rails right off the bat, but I figured I’d atleast put a flashlight on it at some point.   Well, I’m not much of the tactical accessory type, but I figured I’d go tactical with the 4 rail forearm.   Most of my ARs have the standard forearms and I’m use to holding the rifle in the traditional manner.

The traditional setup for an Ar usually means only mounting optics on the top, like an A3 AR and nothing on the sides.   I know there are some variations that still can use a flashlight, but they are not as common.   I was at the range putting my new setup to the test and after about 50rds of shooting, that cold hard, somewhat sharp 4 rail setup started to feel rough on my hands.   I’ve decided to pick up some Tango Down rail panels to help protect my hands and the rails until I settle on which kind of M4 Carbine setup I’m going to go with.   Still shopping for the right flashlight.

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