Vlogging, Range Day, and Meeting the New Crew

Range Day Vlog

Introducing J-Man and Matt to the GEARS Crew, getting 7.5 MPG while hauling guns to the range, EPIC Drone footage and so much more!

Guns used in the video

AR-15

AK-47

Glock 30SF

H&K 45 Tactical

Mossberg Flex 12 Gauge

Colt 1911-22

MP5SD-22

#WindhamProject RMCS-4

AR-15 Pistol

Remington R1 E 1911

Kel-Tec SU-16CA

 

Our YouTube Channel

The GEARS Crew is working hard to built a YouTube channel to bring you our latest reviews. It helps us out, oh so much, if you would click here to subscribe to our channel. Thank you.

Cleaning up the Ghost Problem at the Range with the CMMG .22lr Conversion Kit

conversion kit

The GEARS CREW are back at it again, saving the world from the evils of ectoplasm and the Ghosts who cause it.
CMMG was kind enough to send us out the conversion kit to test along side the #WindhamProject.  We wanted to bring the caliber count up from the stock 4 calibers of 5.56NATO,7.62x39mm,9mm and .300BLK to a fifth caliber with the .22lr conversion kit.

Gears of Guns

Versions of the Kit

CMMG makes a few versions of this kit to handle the left handed rifles.
Just swap this drop in conversion with your bolt carrier group and you will be ready to shoot .22LR.  Ships with 25rd 22LR magazine. All Stainless Steel Construction, includes a 25rd Magazine.
[from CMMGs website]

Training|Learning|Graduating

I think this is an awesome training aid. Trying to introduce people who have a fear of guns and mainly a fear of the AR platform can be at times difficult. This can be due to the noise or the simple fear of recoil hurting them.

I like being able to start someone off with a .22lr and getting them comfortable using one gun with one set of controls and then being able to graduate them to the .223/5.56 calibers.  In other words, you can train on the gun that you will graduate to.  This makes you comfortable with all the different parts of the gun that you will shoot long term. This is a great way to watch people get over their fear and really start to enjoy the sport.

Windham Project April Update

The True Stock Options

The True Stock Options

Checking out the latest review products for the #WindhamProject

Hogue Shipped:

AR-15/M-16 Kit – Finger Groove Beavertail Pistol Grip and OverMolded Collapsible Buttstock – In Red Lava Rubber

Vltor Shipped:

  • (6 Stocks in total)
  • (1) Green IMOD Stock
  • (1) Tan IMOD Stock
  • (1) Black IMOD Stock
  • (1) Green EMOD Stock
  • (1) Tan EMOD Stock
  • (1) Black EMOD Stock

WMD Guns Shipped:

Shipped their new NiB-X Black Full Auto 5.56 Bolt Carrier Group with a NiB Hammer for the trigger assembly.
Its been a wet spring, so I’m just waiting for things to dry out to be able to head to the range.

 

Click here to check out the video

Quick #WindhamProject Update

While looking for 5.56/.223 Bolt Carrier Groups (BCG) for the #WindhamProject I looked into replacing Windham Weaponry’s all black BCG with a Nickel Boron coated BCG from a few different manufacturers.  I found WMD Guns and after a few months of finalizing a new coating they sent us one.

A New Coating

The new coating, as I understand it, is a double plating of Nickel Boron (NiB). The bottom plating is the standard silvery Nib with a top plating of a NiB-X Black.  The NiB-X Black is 40% more wear-resistant than chrome (wear rating from the description sent with the product from WMD Guns).

Thoughts? 

I don’t want to give any thoughts outside of the look since I haven’t had it in my hands until last week. I will say that it is a cool looking BCG.

Style of Choice

The bolt carrier group is a full auto bolt. This is my style of choice, only because the weight slows the BCG down on semi auto.  This insures better extraction with my cheap steel cased ammo.bolt_carriers_1bolt_carriers_bottom

The Real Reason

My biggest reason for the BCG change is the fact that the Windham 7.62×39 and 5.56 BCGs are both black.  This makes it harder to distinguish in low light or with someone who has never used the rifle before.

IMG_1278

#WindhamProject Update

What:

The Windham Project is the new Windham Weaponry RMCS-4 which is a Multi Caliber System built on the AR-15 platform and designed after the MGI Hydra. The rifle is chambered in

  1. 1. 5.56×45/.223Remington Standard AR Mag)
  2. 2. .300 AAC Blackout (Standard AR mag)
  3. 3. 7.62×39 (using an AK Mag)
  4. 4. 9mm (Using a Colt SMG Mag
  5. 5. .22LR (Using the CMMG .22 Conversion kit)

The idea behind our project is to build out an AR-15 using the Windham Weaponry RMCS-4 as the base and build out the parts to make this rifle more rounded out by using various parts from the industry.

Who:

Outside of Windham Weaponry supplying the rifle, we have a few companies who have already sent us a piece for the review.

  • · CAA – Flip up iron sights
  • · CMMG – .22 Conversion with two (25) round mags
  • · AXTS – Raptor Charging Handle, Talon Ambi Safety, and QD end plate
  • · Federal Ammunition – American Eagle 9mm and American Eagle subsonic .300AAC Blackout
  • · WMD Guns – *NEW* NiB BCG
  • · Hogue Overmolded Lava Red Pistol Grip and 6 position rifle stock

Future Plans:

We will be reviewing this rifle for 1 year. We will be reviewing each additional product sent to us, on their own in an individual review, as well as part of the final overall #WindhamProject review.

We are looking for parts that fall under the RMCS-4 parts that would be considered “stock parts” i.e. the stock, pistol grip, BCGs*, products of that nature.

End Goal:

We love the idea that Windham has for this rifle and we just want to have fun and see what else we can do with it. Our end all goals are to build an AR that is chambered in as many calibers as possible through either a barrel change or full upper receiver (in a case such as a .50BMG upper or a piston based upper or pistol caliber outside of 9mm)

Windham has built a platform that we believe is great for someone who may be limited on space and would like to own more than one rifle but space permitting is just not feasible. We want to expand on that idea. IMG_0050

IMG_0006

IMG_0002 (3)

IMG_0046 (2)

A Six Sided Review Of Hexmags

Introduction

If you haven’t heard about or seen Hexmag’s by now you are missing out. For those of us who shoot AR style rifles or platforms that use AR style mags, know we have a large market when it comes to magazines. With manufacturers such as Magpul, Lancer, Surefire and X Products, we have an option, not only in companies but also in style, capacity and material.

A Six Sided Review Of Hexmags

I had seen and used a few Hexmag’s prior to requesting a few for review from Hexmag. I am fond of polymer mags for the simple reason: there are never any failures to feed due to metal on metal friction when firing steel cased ammo.

Reliability

As I said, my personal most common Failure To Feed (FTF also failure to fire) is caused because I prefer to use steel cased ammo to do my reviews. My OOW Browning 1919 hates steel cased, ironically my SUREFIRE 60 round casket mag is about as good as a paperweight when loaded with steel cased and on hot days my C Products Defense mags will stick every 100 rounds or so. My only metal mag that does not care is my X Products X-15 Drum. Being in Texas, if I want a mag to function 99% of the time, I am left with no options but to mostly use polymer mags.

Hexmag is an all polymer body and follower with a steel spring.   This means for me, that I have a mag that doesn’t care what ammo it is feeding and just wants to keep running.

In my testing, I never had a single FTF, much less a single hiccup in the 3000+ rounds we have fired using these mags.

Grip Tape, Accessories and Design

Hexmag, as you can see, has a hexagonal pattern on the body of the mag. This goes in the opposite direction of most mags, that use the “waffle” design. Damn… now I am hungry for a Belgian waffle.

Belgian Waffle FS2000

HEXMAG ORANGE

As more people are now training and using “tactical” gear, I am noticing a trend of more companies offering better grips for everything from pistols to magazines. I haven’t gotten into this trend. I have reviewed a grip tape for my Glock 21 and as I said back then it just isn’t something I care about. I do know however that to a lot of people, it does matter. Hexmag has jumped on the bandwagon early and is just straight up offering the die cut (or whatever the proper term might be for precut) grip tape that matches the hexagonal shapes on their awesome mags.

You might be sitting there thinking, what kind of accessories might they offer? I mean Magpul offers their Magpul and ranger plates so what really could Hexmag offer that is even worth talking about?  Yup I am talking about multiple colors for the follower and base plate button release.

WHAT!?! GAME CHANGER! I mean who doesn’t want “Panther Pink” AR mag parts? I know I don’t!… Wait, I do like this idea… hold up. By having my mags color coded I can identify my match grade bench ammo and my M193 ammo without worrying about getting my mags mixed up? I’m in!

 

Shut-Up-And-Take-My-Money-1024x1280

The “HexID System” is pretty smart. You are not painting your magazines but you have an easy identifier to tell you what you are shooting. Some of us might not even think we would need or use this until we have them.

I shoot mostly steel case but I know on more than one occasion, I have been testing different ammo and needed to keep my loaded mags marked, so I know what I was working on. I also have experienced a few times where I have been running .300Blackout and 5.56x45mm guns on the same table using the same mag brands. We have to keep everything separated so we never cross mags in the guns.

HEXID SYSTEM

hex-id-mags

Testing

I want to tell you about all the amazing testing that we did. I drove over the magazine. That’s it. Oh and I shot 3000+ rounds using only 2 Hexmags over the course of 5 hours.

Yeah.

HEXMAG TRUCK TEST DAMAGE

Color options

HOLY BANANAS! They have 4 different colors to choose from and each color is more exciting than the last! They offer black, a tan-ish black, a lighter hue of black (some of ya’ll less “fashion forward” as I might call “dark gray”), and amazing tint of olive black that is so olive black you might even call it an olive drab.

hexmag_cover-670x446

Conclusion

Would I recommend Hexmag? Maybe. I don’t know… let me turn it back on you! Do you like interchangeable followers and base plate buttons to help you ID your mag from a mag pouch? What about mags that can withstand a Ford F250 loaded to bear with guns and gear driving over mags while on crushed rock that will stand up to the test and not bend or break? What about four different colors of black on AWESOME mags? I am not trying to sway your opinions of Hexmag. I just personally think there is one more 30 round polymer mag on that market that can stand next to someone like Magpul.

Seriously, 3000+ rounds over the course of 5 hours and I didn’t experience a single problem. We drove over one of the mags mid way through testing and still no hiccups.  Excuse me now, I am adding some Hexmags to my Christmas wish list.

Otis Technology Elite Cleaning System Review

I have this weird need to collect cleaning kits. It isn’t because I need 7 identical  12 gauge brushes or because I am lacking in the cleaning rod or cleaning cable department. It seems everyone has their own take on what a shooter needs to help them achieve the best clean possible and I like to see what the differences are. Most companies send out their version of oil and cleaner or even just CLP. However, so far, as much as I am willing to try new types of cleaners or CLPs I do favor my M-Pro7 32oz spray for cleaning.

 FG-1000_facing_left_Large_Multi-Large

Specs

– Over 40 firearm-specific cleaning components in a nylon case
– Six (6) Memory-Flex® Cables of varying length for effective and correct Breech-to-Muzzle® cleaning
– Twenty-two (22) bronze bore brushes to remove copper deposits and other fouling
– Obstruction removal tools for jammed cases and other blockages
– Specialized precision tools for complete breakdown and fine cleaning of all critical and hard to reach areas of your firearm
– Optics cleaning gear for care and maintenance of scopes, rangefinders and more
– Removable Tactical Cleaning System (Item # FG-750) for convenient carrying in the field
– Dimensions: 15 1/4″ x 8 3/4″ x 4 1/2″

The Brushes

As you can see in the picture above the main kit comes 14 different caliber brushes for just about every caliber you might need.

  1. 22 (.204 thru .222)
  2. 25 (.223 thru 6.5)
  3. 27 (.270 thru 7mm)
  4. 30 (.30 thru 8mm)
  5. 35 (.338 thru .357)
  6. 38 (.370 thru 9.3mm)
  7. 40 (.40 thru 10.75mm)
  8. 45 (.44 thru .458)
  9. 50 .50 thru 12.9mm)
  10. .410 GA Shotgun
  11. 28 GA Shotgun
  12. 20 GA Shotgun
  13. 16 GA Shotgun
  14. 12/10 GA Shotgun (
  15. .17 caliber short brush (rifle/pistol/air rifle)
  16. .22 caliber Short brush (rifle/pistol/air rifle)

The other six brushes are found in the removable tactical cleaning system

For me, this means I can clean all of my firearms and my friends and family can use this kit to clean theirs too.

Other brushes:  It comes with a nylon brush that I like to use in addition to gun cleaning as my travel tooth brush and beard comb. I have found that a hit of rem oil really gets the teeth pearly white and the beard soft and shiny (No!  Seriously,  I promise I am NOT stupid enough to believe that I can use gun cleaning gear to brush my teeth or comb my beard! Just joking! You will harm yourself if you try this).

The Other Nougaty Stuff and Things

Otis ships this kit with carbon scrapers, 3 tubes of CLP, lens cleaners, patches for all calibers, cleaning parts for air guns and even a chamber brush for your ARs.

This kit doesn’t come with a brass cleaning rod but rather cleaning cables.  I admit to having days I like them and days I don’t.

Removable Tactical Cleaning System

– 8″, 30″ and 34″ Memory-Flex® Cables for effective and correct Breech-to-Muzzle® cleaning
– Six (6) firearm-specific bronze bore brushes to remove copper deposits and other fouling
– Lightweight soft pack case with belt loop for convenient carrying
– T-handle and obstruction removal tools for jammed cases and other blockages
– Redesigned component holder secures and protects brushes and components
– Dimensions: 4″ x 4″ x 2 1/2″

The 6 brushes that come with this kit are 12/10 Gauge, .22 cal, .27 cal, .45, .38, and .30.

I think I would rather is be a MOLLE pouch but I am sure there is a good reason it isn’t. (I’ll ask at SHOT 2016)

Overall Thoughts 

The Otis Technology Elite Cleaning System retails for $99 Amazon. This kit is really nice in the brush department but I would have liked to have seen their AR BCM cleaning tool they call the B.O.N.E.® TOOL. They make them for both 5.56 and 7.62 bolts.

As I said earlier, I use this with M-Pro 7 cleaner and oil because I find it works best for me.

The Otis Technology Elite Cleaning System is great if you are looking for an all caliber in one kit. Everyone with more than one caliber collection should have one. This kits is a must for collectors, gun ranges, firearm instructors, etc.

If you are someone who stays in the 3 or 4 caliber range ( 9mm, .45, .22 and .30 caliber or what ever it might be) this kit might be overkill but if you know you are going to be branching out and getting into the revolver or big bore game or even just into the Shotgun game this kits is GREAT!

My only two comments, or wish list about what I would like to see changed or added is the BONE tool and the removable kit upgraded to MOLLE.

Taofledermaus: Bullets vs. a LOT of Hard Drives

I have been following TAOFLEDERMAUS‘ youtube channel for years and I have always enjoyed the content he has created.  Since I am having hard drive troubles myself right now I would love to just put them down range and blow them to pieces. Sadly I have so much data I have to try and pull from them I will just let Jeff of Taofledermaus do the shooting of his drives and let you enjoy.

Taofledermaus: Bullets vs. a LOT of Hard Drives

Editorial: Standardizing vs. Proprietary

A few weeks back I reviewed a Windham Weaponry .308 AR style rifle. When I finished the review I contacted my local gunsmith as well as Windham and asked if they knew of any standardization in the .308 AR market.  I wanted to know if anyone had made a pattern for the upper and lower as well as the Bolt Carrier Group (BCG).

standard vs proprietary

The question seemed straight forward, however the answer isn’t. Long story short, no. No one has made a standard to which everyone is following.

(Note: I am using the 5.56×45 and the .223 Remington interchangeably in the article even though they are not the same cartridge.  AR stands for Armalite Rifle not Assault Rifle).

History

In 1955 and 1956 Armalite designed the first prototypes of the original AR-10 chambered in the 7.62×51 (.308 Winchester.)  By 1957, the first AR-15 using the intermediate cartridge 5.56×45 NATO was designed and then sold to Colt due to financial problems that Armalite was having.

Is Anything New Anymore?

Since the AR-10 was designed before the AR-15 it would seem we haven’t taken a step forward but a step back in time. Thanks to Government bans, such as the 1994 Assault Weapon Ban that ended in 2004 and other set backs, the modern sporting rifle world has been trying to play catch up for the past 11 years.

Intermediate vs. Rifle Cartridges

I have never really been a fan of the .223 Remington (5.56x45NATO) and I know I am not alone in this distaste. I have always liked the 7.62x39mm or the newer .300 AAC Blackout when it comes to intermediate cartridges. The .308 win is a rifle cartridge that fits more than just the distance shooting bill. The fact of the matter is that the .308 and the 5.56 have been on the battle field for almost the same amount of time and yet we chose the less ballistically versatile round for civilian and military applications.

DPMS/SR-25 Magazines vs. Proprietary

When building a new firearm platform you have to consider the way your firearm is going to hold rounds. In the the bolt action world we typically use an in-stock style magazine, for the lever actions and shotguns we use a tube and elevator (shell carrier) system, for the semi and full autos we have a choice. Belt fed (seen mainly in past in full auto only but is making it way back in semi auto versions of full auto machine guns) or magazine fed.

The .308 ARs are all based on the smaller AR-15, so you would think after seeing the success of the AR-15 magazine market it would be smarter to stick with what works. But we are still in a relearning stage in the firearm world about supply and demand. The FN SCAR 17 uses a proprietary .308 mag but the SCAR 16 uses STANAG (AR-15 style magazines). When FN released the SCAR 17 to the general population they had problems keeping magazines in stock because they were trying to keep the military contracts filled and just they couldn’t keep up with demand. That’s a problem with proprietary.

The DPMS/SR-25 style magazines are now being made by a number of different magazine manufacturers which means I can order as many as I want.

Standardizing

The AR-15 is known as the Legos for adults. Everything is changeable. If I want a nickel boron BCG I can find a company I like and replace mine in my AR-15.  If I want a new charging handle I get one. If I want to put a .50BMG bolt action upper on my lower I can. This seems to me like a great idea. However in the .308 AR world we have yet to reach an agreement as to what the specs should be.

Final thoughts

Until they all come to an agreement about standardizing, the consumer market for the .308 AR is left with fewer options.  To me, more options means more money back in the pockets of the firearm manufacturers.  More money to the manufacturers means more money can be spent on R&D, which means more advanced guns in the future.

Poll: What (non Magpul) polymer AR mags do you use most in your rifle?

 

AR-Poll.jpg

Kel-Tec SU-16CA – Two Years later

I have been provided the materials needed for this review. However, my opinions are entirely my own and I have not been paid to publish positive comments.

One of the first guns we ever reviewed was the Kel Tec SU-16CA rifle. When we first tested it, we ran about 2000 rounds of Russian and Lake City ammo through this rifle, before we cleaned and oiled it.  It was wonderful and if you want to read the first review you can find it HERE

SU16CA

I now own the rifle and typically it is always taken to the range with me no matter what. Really, to me, that is what we are looking for when it comes to rifles… a rifle that is so reliable that no matter what we are doing we have to bring it out. Now I know I am opening a can of worms by saying that, because of the whole AR VS. AK battle that has been going on forever. It will still be the big argument even when we are carving our thanksgiving turkeys with light sabers.

My SU-16CA has been used for (non full auto) mag dumps to ringing the gong at 300yd with iron sights to teaching someone how to use a gun.  I also use it for ammo/magazine/optic reviews. In the last two years this rifle has shot at least 6000 rounds and I have not had any misfires. This rifle is not the most aesthetically pleasing rifle nor should it be. Kel-tec didn’t sit with the designers saying this rifle needs to be a fashion statement. The rifle is just that, a rifle.

My personal favorite place to take this rifle is a public range where we are shooting in a “building”. Kel-Tec doesn’t ship this rifle with a muzzle device.  I have yet to find one I liked enough to change the look of the rifle. That being said, when we are shooting inside it sounds like a .308 or .30-06 going off, making it one of my favorite conversation starters. People are always walking over and telling me about their .308 semi auto or .30-06.  I love watching their mouth drop when I tell them it is only a .223. The sound isn’t the only thing I love about this rifle and here are my top ten reasons.

Top Ten Reasons I love this rifle

  1. Piston driven. – This makes the rifle run very clean.
  2. Uses standard AR style mags – this is nice because I can run an X-Products X-15 drum with it or p-mags or the Surefire 60 and 100 round casket mags
  3. Easy to fold and store – since this rifle splits the stock and frame and hinges together, it makes it nice to carry when backpacking and on hunts (when you don’t need heavier calibers to take down game).
  4. Sounds like a cannon.
  5. Easy to clean
  6. Lightweight
  7. User friendly – put this rifle in most peoples hands and they can figure it out with no problem.
  8. Comes in five .223 models and one .22LR
  9. Carries two 10 round mags in the stock
  10. Fun to shoot

While my ARs and AKs are great guns and are the equivalent of Legos for men, they aren’t always as reliable.

My 25yd to 300yd rifle is my Kel Tec SU-16CA for the simple fact that it has been tested time and time again and it just works.