Shot Show 2016 Day Two Round Up

Day Two Round Up

See the top five favs that range from a gun that breaks down into a back pack to a snuf can holder for your rifle?

We also saw ELD, extreme low drag rounds.  And of course what every man needs in his closet is a hanger that will support up to 125 pounds!

Shot Show 2016 has a bit of everything and we are looking forward to discovering more in day 3.  Stay tuned for more coverage!

 

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.

Meade Wilderness In Full Scope

Meade Instruments Wilderness™ Spotting Scope – 20-60x100mm Review

Meade Instruments Wilderness™ Spotting Scope - 2060x100mm Review

The Prologue

While visiting with one of my cousins on a recent layover in Dallas, we started talking about her sister who works for Meade Instruments in the marketing department. I went home and checked out Meade’s site. I had found they had a few sporting optics. I wondered why I had never heard of Meade before. I explored the website further and I looked into their sports optics. I found their target audience to lean more in the general sporting optics needs and astronomy.

I called my cousin and she set me up with a Meade Instruments Wilderness 20-60x100mm spotting scope. I requested the largest scope they make because we are trying to see 6 to 8mm holes at 200 yards. My general rule of thumb is, the bigger the optic the better chance of making out what we just hit.

Specs

  • Meade high-quality, 20-60 power, zoom porro prism binoculars deliver years of use.
  • Large 100mm objective gathers plenty of light for bright detailed images.
  • All Wilderness spotters feature high index BaK-4 prisms and high-quality, precision ground lenses that are coated with multiple layers of anti-reflection coatings to provide optical performance that is equal to, or better than any spotting scope in its class.
  • Each Wilderness spotting scope features a sliding sunshade to further reduce glare.
  • A rugged rubber armor covering protects your Wilderness spotting scope from abrasions and damage from regular use.
  • All Wilderness Series spotting scopes are waterproof, fog-proof, and nitrogen purged to ensure many years of performance regardless of the environment.
  • All Wilderness spotting scopes come standard with the soft case and camera adapter (requires T-Mount, not included).

I asked if they manufactured any of the scope parts or glass in the United States and sadly the answer is no as they manufacture in Mexico and China.

Testing

I used this scope during all of our range trips as well as during the September 2015 blood moon eclipse. We were fortunate enough to be able to see that event clearly here in Texas.

Meade Blood Moon

I own only one tripod. All of the others are owned by Clay, our videographer. My tripod is a super expensive one, a $9 deal, that I picked up on Amazon a few years back. I have only used cameras with this tripod prior to this and it had always been fine for that use.

This tripod however did not work well with the Meade Instruments spotting scope. The weight and balance of the Meade scope needs a better built tripod. With that said, the only time this was a big problem was when we used it for the lunar eclipse. Trying to keep the scope centered on the moon was challenging.

Meade Instruments Review

During all of our range trips, the scope was clear and crisp when defining each shot taken at 200yds. We only ran into trouble using it to define each hole in the paper at 300yds.

Final Thoughts

If you are planning on using this scope I would recommend a stronger tripod first and foremost. The scope performed well for us up to 200yards and that was our max. The MSRP is $380. I found the price of this scope to be about $260 online, which is a fair price in my opinion, for the quality of the scope. The scope comes with a carrying bag. As someone who had to carry out two trucks worth of gear for an average range day, I would definitely want to replace the bag with a hard case with foam. I like to keep my gear protected.

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.

C Products Defense AR-15 Magazine Review

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.

I came into this review with an open mind and I hope you do as well. I know this company has had their faults in the past but this review is one I hope lets us move forward.

I met them at SHOT Show 2013 and it took a year but they finally approved my request for mags for testing. I received six aluminum and six stainless steel 30 round AR mags.

Testing 

While I have tested mags in the past by throwing them off towers and dragging them behind golf carts for 10 minutes, I decided this go around I would only test in ways a civilian might damage them. Chances of mags being dragged behind a car or dropped off of a tower are slim (if you don’t account for training courses that teach shooting from the tower).

We have been testing the mags for 6 months or so now and have shot well over 3000 rounds out of all 12 mags. I used mostly steel cased ammo and they never had one hiccup.  The orange follower is anti tilt.

The finish has lasted on all of them and show very little signs of wear. I wanted to test them to see if standard wear such as heavy use would give problems. I also wanted to  know what would happen if, god forbid, I forget I have a loaded mag and I drop it and end up driving over it (yes, this has happened during a review and lunch break).   

Driving over the stainless steel mag caused a small dink in the metal but did not affect the performance of the mag or capacity.  While the whole mag was driven over front to back, the only damage was near the  base plate.

Crushed C Products Mags

Stainless Steel Crush view C Products DefenseCrushed Stainless Steel C Products Defense

The aluminum did not fare as well.

Side View Aluminum C Products DefenseAluminum C Products Mags

Even after bending the metal back as best we could, the aluminum mag is not functional and is now just used for display purposes.

Spot Welds

The welds on all of the mags look solid and should not remind anyone of Christmas past.

Spot Welds C Products DefenseSpot welds C Products Defense 2

Even after the crush test the welds held and seem completely unharmed

Final Thoughts

Go into any gun shop and ask enough questions and someone will always tell you about why you should stay away from (fill in the blank) because in 1967 they had (fill in the blank) problem and there for they cannot trust anything new when it comes to (fill in the blank). Look, all I can tell you from my stand point is if you are looking for metal mags and you have no intention of being attacked by a Sharknado or a herd of “I can’t trust polymer guns because in 1943 we used wood…”. C Products Defense mags pass my test.

Remington R1 Enhanced 1911 Review

When I was younger I fancied myself a “Glock” man. In all of the debates with my friends I held true to my Glock fandom and that there wasn’t a 1911 on the face of this earth that could sway me. I have grown up a lot since then and I have experienced one or maybe two more guns since I was a youth. As I have matured and become a reviewer, I know that my tastes and knowledge has grown with me. I have been on the hunt for a 1911 that I could put the Atticus James stamp of approval on for about 2 years now, and I can say I have finally found it.

Remington R1 Enhanced 1911 Review

Side Story 

Before I get to reviewing this gun I wanted to share a story with you. As some of you know, I name my guns like they are my children and each firearm has a name that relates to a part of the gun and how it came to be mine.

On Valentine’s Day 2015, I picked up the Remington R1 1911 and the OOW 1919 (it was my month of ordering firearms designed in the 1900s). I opened the Remington pistols’ hard case and saw the gun for the first time. I instantly knew her name. Cupids Bow (Cupid for short). Because if Cupid was real it wouldn’t carry bow and arrows, it would carry this .45ACP, so when you get hit with love it feels like a Mac truck just hit you. This is how I felt when I first held the Remington R1 Enhanced and again when I first shot this pistol. Love hitting me like a Mac truck.

2015-05-11 17.33.12

Specs

ACTION: Short recoil operation
CALIBER: .45 ACP
MAGAZINE CAPACITY: 8+1 (comes with two mags)
BARREL: 5 in.
OVERALL LENGTH: 8.5 in.
OVERALL HEIGHT: 5.5 in.
GRIPS: Enhanced Wood Laminate
TRIGGER PULL: 3.5-5 lb.
WEIGHT: 39.5 oz.
Price: $940

First Impressions

I am not a good shot with pistols at anything farther than maybe 10 feet. I am working at getting my accuracy better but it has taken time. When we first took the Remington R1 Enhanced out to the range we were working in our back bay that goes out to 182 yards. We had been shooting our OOW 1919 out to the 50 yard line. We had to take a break from the 1919 and moved over to pistols for a bit. After shooting about 250 rounds down at the 7 yard with the Remington R1 Enhanced I decided to ring steel at 10y and 25 yards. I felt super confident after ringing in the silhouette at 25 yards. I wanted to try my hand at 50. After about 3 shots of walking up I rang the steel. For some of you this is nothing and I understand that, but for me this was AWESOME!

Shooting

When I moved over to the knockdown plate rack I was averaging about 90% hit rate at 10 yards. I let my sister try this pistol out and she noted it was heavy when she first picked it up but after shooting the gun and seeing how the weight helped her follow up shots I think the heaviness didn’t bother her after that. The crew got some time behind the gun and I heard things like “they can take this from my cold dead hands” “dibs” “do you think Atticus would notice it missing if I sneak it under my shirt and take it home”.

Grips

I don’t like the prickliness of the grips. I understand the reason being that it adds more slip resistance, but I am not a fan. I found that the screws were loose on the grips when I got the gun. After tightening them they haven’t backed out once.

 2015-05-11 17.28.30

500 Round Cleaning

After the first day of shooting, the muzzle was very caked with carbon and powder. I always use M Pro 7 cleaner on my guns and after taking the Remington R1 down and spraying everything with cleaner all the carbon just wipes off and returned the gun to a shiny new-ish gun.

2000 Round Cleaning

When shooting the next 1500 round (maybe 200 rounds in) is when we had our first and only failure to fire. I was being bad and using an old box of Tula and I believe the round was just bad. After cleaning the gun it is still shiny and looks new. The fiber optic front sight needed to be cleaned with a q-tip but still is red and very visible .

Ammo Used

I have been using Blazer 230 Gr FMJ .45 Auto ammo in my .45s for years now and I have never really had any problems with it. I used 1600 round of Blazer, 50 rounds of Tula Ammo 45 ACP 230 Gr. FMJ Steel Case, 50 rounds of HPR .45 AUTO 230 JHP (the round I used to hit steel at 50 yards) and the last 300 rounds was Monarch brass .45 ACP FMJ.

Take Down

Remington ships a plastic barrel bushing wrench with the pistol making the take down easier. The gun takes down just like any other 1911.

Trigger

I have a Geissele Super Semi-Automatic Enhanced (SSA-E) Trigger in my AR-15. I have been complimented on this trigger more times than I can remember. The Remington R1 Enhanced Trigger is very similar. The trigger had a little more play left and right then I like but the pull and the reset are crisp and clean. It is like drinking a nice cold glass of water on a hot summer day. This trigger quenches that thirst like very few can.

2015-05-11 17.28.22

The Sights

The adjustable rear sight and fiber-optic front sight (red) make for an easy to see and quick to draw sight picture. Out of the box the pistol was dead on at 25 yards. When holstering this pistol in my drop leg holster I never had any problems with it snagging on the front sight. I never carried this pistol concealed because I do not have a holster to fit this gun.

2015-05-11 17.31.07

2015-05-11 17.26.34

The Hard Case

In the case, it has a cut out that I could not figure out for the life of me what went there. 2015-05-11 17.37.28

As it turns out Remington sells a 1911 Multi-tool that fits in that spot

1911-Multitool_closed

1911-Multitool

As to why anyone would store this in the hard case is beyond me but I guess if you are wanting to give this as a gift with the tool included it would make for a nice one piece gift.


Overall Thoughts

The Remington R1 Enhanced is a custom factory made gun. Fit and finish on this pistol makes that apparent.

I loved this gun. I have never shot Remington’s other 1911s but my gunsmith said he has never been happy with them and that he only liked what Remington had done with the R1 Enhanced.

2000 Rounds and only one issue is good odds. Especially if that was only due to bad ammo.

At $940 MSRP it is hard to beat the price for a custom gun. While this gun would make for a nice piece to display it is also a firearm you could can shoot day in and day out.

Targetvision Short Range Wireless Spotting Scope Review

At SHOT Show 2014 I met Clay Rhoden one of the co-founders of TARGETVISION at media day at the range. Having just finished reviewing a similar short range target camera viewing system, I was interested in seeing what TARGETVISION had done differently. Two of the most noticeable things I first saw was that it was a self contained camera and wireless transmitter housed in a plastic tube vs. the tool box the other company uses. The other thing was the HD camera that they use.

Short_Range_Next_to_Tripod_1024x1024

There were three items total that were shipped to me. The camera system, the charging cord and a small tripod that the camera screws into. This means there isn’t much to misplace. This is a big thing for me since I carry a large amount of gear to the range.

IMG_5941

When I first used the camera, the picture (seen below) was blurry. I called the company from the range and spoke with Clay at TARGETVISION. He, at first, thought it might have been a defective camera. After a couple of conversations, he wanted me to try some different things before we shipped it back. In the meantime, for whatever reason, the camera recalibrated itself when we got home and the next week we had a very clear and crisp video.

At the range
IMG_5910
A week later.

2015-03-31 16.54.17

I am a red blooded male and I admit I do not like to read manuals. As a reviewer, I admit, I should know better. TARGETVISION sent not one, but TWO guides. The 19 page manual and birthday card size quick start guide. Again, I did not read either of them and I thought more was wrong with the camera than really was. The camera tube is meant to be 10-15 feet away from the target and off to the side so you do not shoot it. We were use to my other system, which sits about 6 feet away from the target. Don’t be like me and skip reading the important information TARGETVISION sends you. It is not because they want to send you one more booklet for you to lose but so you know how to use your $595 targeting system.

Setting the System

As you can see in the pictures, there are no wires you have to mess with. The TARGETVISION System is pretty much turn the device on, connect to the devices to wifi, open the app and shoot.

App

clip_image006

I used the system on my iPhone 4s, 6 and my android (don’t judge me) tablet. The system worked great across all three devices. I do prefer to use the tablet over the phones simply because of the larger screen.

Overall Thoughts

I am a big tech fan and I like seeing how new technology is helping me become a better reviewer and better shooter as we have more and more things to assist in giving us instant data to get the round on target better and faster.

I have to note that when the TARGETVISION system is sitting in a 100 yard long wind tunnel with 12 foot high walls of steel belted radial tires the camera does not always connect quickly or stay connected. I don’t spend much time in them so it wasn’t really a problem but it was worth noting. This has to do with how wifi signal carries and not the device.

A feature I would like to see is integration of a ballistic calculator in the app. Also on that note, I would like to see more community involvement so integration can be like the health app on the iPhone which allows you to better track your health with different devices all in one app.  The more data we can share all in one place the better and safer shooters we all become.

TARGETVISION is one of the companies who first had a product like this. I liked the camera for 3 reasons: It was easy to set up, easy to use, and all self contained. Being able to mark your shots is important but it is a feature on the other cameras so it doesn’t play as much of a factor into my review as that is the norm.

Range Gear

I have been shooting for years now and it seems every year I add more and more gear to my daily range carry. A few people have asked what I carry. 

I will not be discussing the gear we use for reviewing, such as cameras and laptops and other gear as that isn’t what my true daily range carry consist of.

When I first starting shooting alone (pre GearsofGuns.com) I carried a backpack with ammo, eye and ear protection, a bottle of water and shooting gloves plus the firearms and their respectful cases.

Fast forward to 2015 and I carry:

  • 6-10 long rifle cases each holding 1-8 firearms,
  • Multiple of different slings, holsters and shooting gloves,
    Chest Rig
  • An ice chest with food and water,
  • Full Tool box
  • Full med kit,
  • 5+ ammo cans and cases of ammo,
  • Spotting scope,
  • Spotting camera with iPad,
  • A box of targets.
    My EDC Backpack
    1-2  foot lockers loaded to bear with gear,
  • Cleaning kit with two cans of CLP
    Electronic Earpro
    Ear muffs
  • Earplugs
    4 different pairs of shooting glass all with different lens

    Water proof notebook
    Sighting tools
    Backup Pistol and rifle
    mags
  • Batteries (AAAA, AAA, AA, CR123, LR44, USB battery backup)
    A spare
    Leupold scope
  • Tannerite
    Shooting mat
    Spare bipod (for review guns)
    Bore
    sight
    Tape (duct tape, masking tape)
    Pens, markers and pencils
    Speed loaders
  • Belt linker and 500 extra links
    Rope and fishing wire
    Any items being reviewed

On my person I carry

Leatherman MUT
Kilimanjaro Gear VELLO Knife
Sunglasses,
Holster with my carry of the day
My EDC list

If you have ever seen the GEARS Crew show up at the range you know we look like we are packed for the zombie apocalypse.

This list is my basic list of what I personally bring to each range. Each crew member has their own list of what they bring.

What are some of your basics you always carry to the range?