Freedom Ordnance FM-9 Belt Fed Upper Receiver

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Having a belt fed rifle sounds awesome doesn’t it? While everyone else is having to constantly change out magazines every 30 rounds or so, you are able to just keep slinging lead down range to your hearts content. Who wouldn’t enjoy that feeling?

Who Wants to Stop?

Until recently, you would have to cough up the dough to purchase a machine gun to enjoy such pleasures. And you know the cost of firing it would add up quickly; even .223 can cost quite a bit when you are shooting a couple thousand round. Because, let’s be honest, you’re not going to want to stop after a couple of boxes.

Firearm Cost vs Ammo Cost

Recently there has been a trend of semi-auto only “machine guns” being released. We recently reviewed one here by Ohio Ordnance. And while they are cheaper and easier to purchase than their full auto counterparts, the high cost for the firearm and the cost of ammo will quickly take its toll on your wallet.

Solutions

Freedom Ordnance has released what they believe to be the solution to this problem, with their FM-9 belt fed upper receivers. You can just take any AR15 or M16 lower that you currently own, and attach their complete upper. You now have a belt fed 9mm in your hands and the world’s largest grin on your face.

Elite Model

At a much cheaper cost of entry and the relatively cheap cost of ammunition, this seems to solve all problems of purchasing and owning a belt fed firearm that previously came with owning something this unique. Additionally, if you choose to purchase the Elite model, or elect to upgrade to it at a later date, you have the ability to quickly change the barrel.

While this may not seem like it would be an important feature, it will save you a lot of time waiting on your barrel to cool off. It will also help to extend your barrel’s life if used properly.

Shoot Slow? Hell NO!

Now let’s just be honest here, you are not going to be shooting this slowly! You will get this in your hands and want to throw ammo downrange as quickly as you can. That’s whole purpose of owning a belt fed; shooting fast and not having to reload every 30 rounds.

New Trigger

If you own a M16 lower or a drop in auto sear, this will be easy. Just thrown it into full auto and enjoy. If you are not fortunate enough to own one of those, don’t worry. This is still fun to shoot in semi auto, but I would recommend looking to purchase a binary trigger or a slide fire stock to simulate the full auto experience.

Quick Linker

The other thing that you will want to look into purchasing would be a quick linker. It is not necessary for the complete firearm to function, but will save you a lot of time and is well worth the investment.

What’s the Cost?

I know what you may be thinking, “this sounds great and all, but what is the catch? There has to be something wrong with it.” Well the price is still a little higher than I would expect at about $1300, but this is still much lower than the other belt fed options. And while Freedom Ordnance website does state that only certain ammunition seems to work well, the 9mm is still a relatively cheap round to fire.

Drawbacks?

The biggest drawback that I have seen for this system, is that when it comes time to purchase a new barrel (unfortunately, shooting fast you will probably go through barrels very quickly) you will have to buy Freedom Ordnance barrels and cannot select one from another manufacturer. This is to be expected, as nobody else has anything like this available. It also ensures that what you are putting on your gun will function as designed.

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Head Turning at the Range

For anyone looking for an exciting new toy for the range that is guaranteed to turn heads, I think does the trick. If you can’t afford something like the Ohio Ordnance 1919 or the FNH M249S, I think this is a great alternative. You still get the enjoyment of running a belt fed firearm, but at a much lower cost of ownership. Just throw some form of optic on it, and enjoy.

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Video: CMMG MK AKS13 First Look

Cmmg MK47 AKS13

We are really excited to take the CMMG Mutant for a test spin and see how it fairs up against an AR as well as an AK.

In this video we look at the size of the CMMG Mk47 (7.62x39mm) bolt carrier group up against an AR-15 style Bolt Carrier Group chambered in 7.62×39. We also look at a BCG that is chambered for .308 (7.62x51mm)

The CMMG MK47 charging handle has it downfalls. We show you the size difference and how we come to that conclusion.

Stay tuned as we bring more videos and reviews of this mutant rifle.

Video Tuesday!!! Vltor: The True Stock Options

Today we look at 6 Vltor stocks in Black, FDE/Tan and Foliage Green. Vltor sent the IMOD and the EMOD stocks for us to test on the #WindhamProject.

I love the fact that the EMOD stock has the battery compartment for my CR123s. 

The IMOD stock is smaller so it has less of a foot print in your safe or hard case but still has the beastliness of the EMOD to handle anything you throw at them.  

The #WindhamProject is a Windham Weaponry RMCS-4 AR which is chamber in 5.56, .300BLK, 7.62x39mm, 9mm and .22lr. We have grabbed some of the most awesome parts of the gun industry to help us better customize this rifle and show you how to can turn this rifle from something awesome to something EPIC and drool worthy at the range.

Vltor EMOD and IMOD Stocks in Tan

CGI– Wooden Edition

This week on Cool Guns of The Internet. Todays post is brought to you by God and Nature in the form of wood.
If you have a firearm you would like us to post in next weeks CGI all you have to do is send us a picture of your firearms via email, at “pictures@gearsofguns.com” and we’ll post it! But tell us what the firearm is and for more flavor, tell us a story about the gun like a funny hunting trip, or a sentimental story about the gun! Make it as detailed as possible! And let us know who you are if you want photo credit!

Beautiful Side by Side ShotgunSpringfield M1A with Wood StockWood Stock Side by Side ShotgunLaminated AR 15Craftsmanship going into a ShotgunLeft Handed Bolt Action Classic Lever Action and RevolversLion Craved StockInsane AR SBRLever Action

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

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.

The November Glocktoberfest Review

A Glock 30 Short Frame 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 like the idea of not trying to be in the first wave of bloggers to review a firearm. I prefer to wait a year after a product comes out to review it because it means I have a chance to request to spend more time with a firearm. That way I get to know it more mindfully without worrying about the other reviewers waiting in the long line to test a firearm out.

I own a few Glocks and my favorite of all of them is my Gen 2 G21 .45ACP 13 round pistol. I requested the Glock 30SF for review about 5 months back, after seeing it at SHOT Show 2014. I have always been someone who loves the .45ACP over just about any other pistol cartridge, because of the size of the round.

GLOCK 30SF

I like knowing I have the power and punch that comes with the .45ACP cartridge. The old saying about carry a bigger stick comes to mind. I do not believe that this love of the .45acp  affects or deters my abilities to do my job when looking at different calibers with an objective view point. Let’s face it, they are all fun to shoot.

Glock 30SF Specs

Caliber: .45 ACP (Automatic Colt Pistol)
Length: 6.88”
Width: 1.27”
Height: 4.80”
Barrel Length: 3.77”
Trigger Pull: 5.5 pounds
Mag Capacity: 10 rounds (standard) 13 Rounds (using Glock 21 mags)

Shooting

As I said, I requested more time with this gun to get 1 or 2 more rounds down range. This brought my round count to around 2500 rounds of ball and jacketed hollow points. I never holstered this pistol, as I use a large frame drop leg holster at the range.

When I first pulled the Glock 30 SF out of the box, the empty mags wouldn’t drop freely. I loaded the mags with 10 rounds each and fired all 20 rounds. After that, they had no problem falling free when I hit the mag release.

The Size

My groupings were better when I was running my Glock 21 mags out of the pistol because I had more real estate to grip the gun with allowing for better control. The 10 round mags just barely allowed for my pinky to be on the gun, not giving me as tight of a grip. The difference was a stray round left or right after shooting a few mags.

GLOCK SF

Cleanings

Normally I don’t worry about keeping review guns clean after every range trip. I like to see how they handle and if they slow down as they get dirtier. I didn’t do that with the Glock 30SF because I didn’t feel there was a need to test something that had been shown for years that even dirty, they work.

I cleaned the gun after every range day and the most rounds put through it at any one time was 800 rounds of Federal American Eagle Pistol .45 ACP 230 Grain FMJ which in my opinion is decently “clean” ammo compared to the Wolf and Tula Steel case. There was just really no good reason to torture test this pistol. When I opened it up, I saw exactly what I expected.

Ammo Used

One thing I have always noted with Glock is that they typically will shoot any brand or ammo type I run through them. I tested a box of brand new Tula steel case. After 5 light primer strikes without any ignition I switched the ammo to my 1911 and didn’t have any problems with the ammo. I have seen this problem before using the Wolf barrel on my Glock 21. However, when using the factory barrel, this was never an issue. I believe this was caused by the Tula primers being seated deeper than spec.

The brands I used:

· Federal (230 Grain ball)

· Wolf Polyformance (230 Grain ball)

· HPR JHP (230 Grain Jacketed hollow point)

· Monarch Brass (230 Grain ball)

· Monarch Steel (230 Grain ball)

· CCI Blazer Aluminum (230 Grain ball)

· Monarch Brass (185 Grain JHP)

· And a few other brands from people who shot the gun with ammo they brought.

In The Box

1 Glock 30SF
2 10 Round Factory Mags
2 Spent brass from the proofing department at Glock
1 “speed” Loader
1 .45 caliber nylon bore brush
1 Plastic Cleaning rod
Paperwork
1 cable lock

The “Speed” Loader

The speed loader they ship is a good thought, in theory, but in my hands it was slow and frustrating to use.  I was always faster hand loading each mag than using the speed loader provided.

Speed Loader

When trying to load the .45s into the magazine you still have to push the previous round down as the loader doesn’t offer enough room for the brass to slide in. The efforts are almost that of hand loading the mag without the use of your thumb on the round. This seems like more procedure and steps to just load one round.  

I do own a Maglula for pistols I found that I was faster using that then by hand.  The speed loader isn’t bad; it just did not work well for me. A few of the other crew members had better luck with it. Everyone did agree, in the end that the Maglula was the fastest.

My Sister and the .45

After getting out of college, my father and I figured if my sister was going to be living alone she needed a pistol to keep at her place. My sister has grown up around guns. She enjoys shooting with me every now and then.

She likes my Glock 21 and is a fairly decent shot with it. I did not want to part with my Glock 21. When I heard one of my friends was selling his Glock 22, I jumped on it and picked it up for a really great price.  I thought about giving it to her, but I just like it too much.

My sister has always lived within a 40 minute drive from my folks so we were never worried about her. Recently she has been looking for another job outside of the state. She has also been expressing more and more interest in getting her conceal carry.

I looked at a few pistols for her but it always came back to wanting the .45acp. I view conceal carry pistols as something you should WANT to shoot. If you enjoy shooting it, you are more likely to train more with it than something you just carry because you were told to.

I have taken her to the range with us a number of times to get some trigger time with this pistol and her comment is always the same “so this is my new gun right”?  “You are letting me keep this one because it fits me and I like it”

For Christmas I have ordered a Glock 30SF for her but now I am sitting here wishing I had ordered one for myself. You just can’t have too many guns, right???

Light Rail

The Glock 30SF has a rail for a light or laser mount. I don’t currently own any pistol lights or lasers due in part to the fact that I haven’t found one that has sparked my interest yet. I honestly haven’t looked that hard either. I am always open to recommendations.

The Recoil

I would equate the recoil to that of the larger Glock 21. This surprised me the first time I shot it as I was expecting a little harsher recoil. Later, I put one in each hand (the 21 and the 30SF) and I could feel that were pretty close to the same weight.  I guess I should not have been surprised.

Conceal Carry Note

At this time in my life I do not conceal carry. 90% of the time I leave the house, the place I am going will not allow me to enter with a pistol. This makes for a tough choice for me, do I carry in my truck and risk someone breaking into the truck because it is older or do I leave my gun at home and just pray I am never in a place where I need it?  I tend to keep my gun at home. One of the crew members is a police officer and I am normally within arm’s length of him. On top of that I live in a good area with very low crime.

Accuracy

I want to tell you that my shot groups looked like I only hit the target with one round. The truth is, even if the gun was that accurate I am not that skillful. The subcompact design is not meant for competition shooters, it is meant for conceal carry. In a conceal carry situation you are not going to try and engage the target at 300 yards like you see in the movies. This pistol, for me, was just as accurate as any of my other Glocks. I can hit a man size silhouette at 50 yards.

Glock 21 Mag

Final Thoughts

I have been a fan of Glocks’ for years (I know, you couldn’t tell). The subcompact Glock 30 SF is just another in a long line of quality pistols they are known for. While picking up this pistol from my FFL I was asked if I wanted to purchase their Glock 43 Single Stack 9mm. My only comment was, why mess with 9mm when you can have the power of a .45acp?

I wish I could get more range time with this pistol just because it is fun to shoot. If you get the chance to send some lead down range running this pistol I highly recommend it.

Gift Giving Suggestions

As said earlier in this article, I will be gifting this gun to my sister. That being said, she has shot many different calibers and pistols. She knows how to handle her firearm and herself. She knows she prefers Glocks. This was an easy choice for me.

As it is getting closer to the holiday season I would like to add this word of advice to anyone thinking about buying any pistol as a gift. If the person you are purchasing for owns a lot of firearms as it is and you know for fact they are comfortable with different pistols, go for it. If not, please think about taking them to a store and seeing if they like the pistol first.

I have seen too many couples at the range, where the guy bought a pistol for his significant other without letting her size the gun up first. I see them getting into situations that makes everyone uncomfortable. It can occasionally put them and others in harm’s way since they cannot handle the firearm yet. 

Buying a caliber that someone is not comfortable with shooting yet can cause people to be turned off by shooting. It can even cause them to mishandle the firearm and put themselves and other people in a dangerous situation.

Introducing someone to a firearm first is always the safer bet so they get a chance to have some hands on time. They can say whether they like the weight and if they like how the gun shoots. I know you are not always able to test first a gun before you buy it, but it is worth renting that caliber firearm first. I strongly recommend letting the gift receiver try it out at the range to see how they respond. This is always a smart idea. Firearms make a wonderful gift, just make sure it’s a wonderful experience.

Steel

    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.

    Ohio Ordnance Works 1919A4 Bundle 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.

    Before I talk about this 1919A4 belt fed firearm I have to talk about Ohio Ordnance Works. I have never met them in person but I can tell you I have the upmost respect for the men and women of this company. Normally when working with a firearm manufacturer I work with one person and if I have any problems they are the only one I can contact to get a problem resolved. This company however is not like that. When I had a problem with the 1919 on a Tuesday morning I did not speak to my contact Bob Conroy I spoke with the owner directly. I will talk more about that a little later on and help further explain why I have to open with these comments.

    Ohio Ordnance Works 1919A4 Bundle Review

    M1919A4 Specs+

    Designed: 1919
    Number built: 5 million
    Variants: A1; A2; A3; A4; A5; A6; M37 and AN/M2
    Weight: 31 lb (14 kg) (M1919A4)
    Length: 37.94 in (964 mm) (M1919A4)
    Barrel length: 24 in (610 mm)
    Cartridge: .30-06 Springfield and 7.62×51mm NATO
    Action: Recoil-operated/short-recoil operation
    Rate of fire: 400–600 round/min
    Feed system: 250-round belt

    The OOW M1919A4 is classified as a belt fed rifle.  The machine gun classification is for full auto only, making this gun a semi auto and available without a NFA tax stamp.

    The Backstory

    As many of you may have already seen and heard, Ohio Ordnance Works has redesigned the BAR and made it their H.C.A.R. (Heavy Counter Assault Rifle). This is a very cool looking rifle but it honestly was not the first thing that peaked my interest when I first came to their website. While scrolling through their guns I saw the semi auto 1919A4 Bundle which is a SEMI AUTO belt fed tripod rifle. Side note: this means you cannot put the sig stabilizing brace on this and turn it into a pistol (I found this out at my FFL holders shop when I told him all the cool kids were making pistols and I wanted one too). When I saw that, the first thing that went through my head was this is AWESOME! who doesn’t want to own a belt fed gun? and that is when I saw the price. $3,997. I honestly figured they would have this priced to be closer to $7000+.   On top of all of that, the gun at the bottom of the page is a 1919A4 with a Cleaning Kit, Manual, Headspace & Timing Gage, and the .308 Trunnion Shield for $2500.

    YOU ARE TELLING ME I CAN OWN A BELT FED RIFLE FOR THE SAME PRICE AS 2.5 AR-15s? Sign me up!

    Let me put two images in your head.

    1. You pull up to the range, get out of your truck, walk to the firing line and pull out the same plain Jane AR-15 that every other shmuck has and shoot it

    or

    2. You pull up to your private range, back up into your bay, unload a 1919 A4 out of your truck and not give a s**t about what anyone else thinks because you own a belt fed tripod rifle of glory?

    That is what I thought.

    OOW 1919A4 Bundle Specs

    Bundle Includes:

    · 1919A4 Semi-Auto

    · Manual

    · Tripod, Pintle, T&E

    · Headspace & Timing Gage

    · Custom Cut Pelican Case

    · 1919A4 Linker

    · Cleaning Kit

    · 1,000 Links

    · Spade Grip

    · .308 Trunion Shield

    · Parts to Convert Gun to .30-06

    · Membership Access to Video Tutorial

    The Bundle

    When my gunsmith got the M1919A4 in he told me he saw the parcel service driver spending more time than normal in the back of the truck so he walked outside to see what the deal was and the driver told him he needed to get his dolly to carry this box into the shop. My gun smith told him that he didn’t need to worry he would just help him carry it in. In his words, “that was a mistake”.

    1919a4_bundle_copy

    The pelican case isn’t grossly over heavy but it’s a long case that is meant to be carried using the handles or rolled using the built in wheels, making it easy to move. In the cardboard box it was heavy and awkward.

    Inside of the custom cut Pelican case the rifle also comes with:
    Manual
    Tripod, Pintle, T&E
    Headspace & Timing Gage
    Cleaning Kit
    Spade Grip
    .308 Trunion Shield
    and Parts to Convert the Gun to .30-06

    You also get:

    1000 Links (they link .308 Winchester, .30-06 Springfield and 8mm cartridges)
    Membership Access to Video Tutorials (this is very important)
    and the 1919A4 Linker

    2015-06-02 19.06.24

    The Ammo

    Our good friends over at Luckygunner.com sponsored the .308 used in this review.
    We used 1000 rounds of 308 Winchester 180 Gr Sp Prvi Partizan

    Be sure to check them out for all your ammo needs.

    Linking

    When the rifle first came in Ohio Ordnance Works was out of stock of the linker so they shipped it without one. The crew and I had plans to get this gun on the range as quick as possible because it was going to rust from all the drooling if we didn’t.

    IMG_5843
    [1000 links in a plastic box I purchased)

    I called over one of the guys to come help me hand load 500 rounds and I can tell you from experience this is a bloody ordeal and I am thankful I never have to do that with this gun ever again. It took two people about an hour of linking to get all the belts made (we made them into 40 round belts.)  When we got the linker in a few days later, it took me 23 minutes by myself to do the same amount.

    IMG_5905

    Shooting

    As I said, we shot 1000+ rounds of .308 through the M1919A4. It was the most fun you can have without full auto.

    IMG_5860

    I tried both the spade grip as well as the standard grip and both of them are fun to shoot. I think I like the standard grip more because it means I don’t have to take the M1919A4 down to put it back in its case… maybe I am just lazy.

    Changing Barrels and Cleaning

    This gun comes with a membership to videos on how to change the barrel and take apart the gun and they do a much better job at explaining this than I can. I will say I have watched the videos every time I have cleaned this gun and when I had to fix the gun to insure I don’t miss anything. The videos are helpful and comprehensive.

    The Problem and the Solution

    On the first range trip, we shot about 250 rounds before I broke the gun. Yes I admit I broke it and I am kind of happy it happened. I have no idea why the detent pin bent but the pin that rides in the channel from the extraction arm bent out of place and stopped the gun from working. Ohio Ordnance Works said, “it was probably a fluke, a wriggling out of place by the pin. We’ve made tons of these and not had an issue like that. They are new/grad A surplus, so you may have found one that just wasn’t perfect.”

    IMG_5861

    I am happy about breaking the gun because of the experience I had afterwards. I hate breaking guns. I know as a reviewer I can be hard on gun but normally we know their limits and where the maximum amount of safe operating abuse is and we err on the side of caution. This however was not abuse. We were still warming the M1919A4 up when it bent.

    This killed the mood at the range. Since this is a review gun and it was a weekday morning I called Ohio Ordnance Works to try and figure out what had happened. I spoke with the young lady who answered the phone and she told me, Bob Conroy wasn’t in the office.  She transferred me to Mr. Landies instead. Under stress, my vocabulary resorts to almost grunting so when Mr. Landies got on the phone and started helping me he was very understanding at my lost of proper terminology and told me that a picture is worth 1000 words or in my case 3 words and a grunt. So I e-mailed a photo of the bent part and he e-mailed me back just a few minutes later asking for a shipping address.

    The following day I had my whole family over for lunch. When I got a knock at my door from the shipper with the part, you might say I was very surprised. I had figured I wouldn’t get this gun fixed for a few days at a minimum, but they overnighted the part to me. This blew me away, no one does that. No one ships you the part overnight unless it is a dire emergency. To say the least, I was impressed.

    About a month ago, while on Instagram, I saw that Ohio Ordnance Works had posted a picture of a gentleman holding a beautiful rifle with the caption of Happy birthday boss… Mr. Landies. As it turns out I wasn’t transferred to some shop floor guy who builds the rifles but to the owner of the company. Again… no one does that.

    After fixing the gun we took it back on the range a few weeks later and the gun ran like a champ. Screen Shot 2015-06-02 at 6.28.23 PM

    Final Thoughts

    The gun is battle tested. I never had any doubts that this was a good gun, if it wasn’t, it would not still be in service all over the world.
    While owning this 1919A4 only makes me feel cooler in my head, I know that I will not be taking this out to the range every Sunday. I know that it is a special occasion gun than is very expensive to just play with.

    This is a gun that has a lot of history attached to it and since Ohio Ordnance Works has made this M1919A4 to be as affordable to own as possible I think it is a very nice piece to have in anyone’s collection. Plus, when your friends are bragging that they own a Tavor or a SCAR 17 you can just look at them and say “that’s cute, I own a belt fed tripod rifle”.

    I have been very impressed with this company from the first time I spoke with them on the phone. They have always been very helpful and ready to work with us. I know I say this a lot, but I truly love the gun community. There is, bar none, not a single community with more caring and awesome people.

    Leupold Mark AR MOD 1 1.5-4x20mm Firedot-G SPR Review

    mod1-1-5-4x20-P5-sideprofile-illum-530x119

    I suck at shooting. There I have admitted it, they always say the first step to recovery is to admit you have a problem. Now I could bore you with all kinds of completely legitimate excuses reasons why I suck. I could tell you it is because the ammo we use is cheap and doesn’t have the correct tracking software installed for the paper targets we use. I could also tell you it is because the large hadron collider causes abnormal parallaxes in the scope making me see the bullseye 6 inch low. Maybe I could tell you it is because my parents told me from a young age that if I didn’t eat all my brussel sprouts I would grow up to be a poor shot. All of these excuses reasons are one hundred and seven percent accurate and my reason for my lousy groupings.

    But today I want to talk about what has helped my shooting when the large hadron collider is on.  LEUPOLD & STEVENS.
    All joking aside, to say I like Leupold scopes would be an understatement. They are one of my favorite companies to work with because they are just good people making great products.  Over the past few years the GEARS Crew has purchased a number of scopes from them, the latest being the Leupold Mark AR MOD 1 1.5-4x20mm with Firedot-G SPR Reticle.

    I reviewed this scope for a member of the GEARS Crew who we haven’t introduced yet, due to timing issues, but will be working behind the scenes in a number of future projects.

    I had this scope on the Windham .308 AR we reviewed a few months back. After shooting with this scope for a month I almost went out and purchased a second scope for myself for this rifle, that is how much I loved it.

    Normally for my AR platforms I like red dots. I don’t really care to spend much time behind a tube scope shooting unless I am shooting farther than 100 yards. I prefer to use my bolt action rifles on anything past 100 yards because I like the feel of the action more than the semi auto recoil. To all rules, there is always an exception, this combo is my exception. With this scope and rifle combo I was having fun ringing steel at 300 yards and almost ran 150 rounds just doing that. To say that the rifle with this scope paired together made for a match(grade) made in heaven might just RING true.

        reticle-128-large

    I really didn’t care much about the illuminated reticle as I never shot in anything but bright day light.
    The Firedot-G SPR reticle is Mil Dot and makes for quick changes when engaging targets at different distances.

    markarmod1-1-5-4x20-P5-large-527x530

    I really don’t have much to say on this scope other than how much I liked it. This scope made for great shooting at everything from 7 feet to 300 yards (max range we used it at).

    At the price of a magnifier and red dot, this scope comes under by half (if not more) in most cases, at $564.99 for the illuminated and $374.99 for the Duplex. (below)

       reticle-2-large

    After years of uses I have found that my Leupold’s have always held up from trips to the range and being jostled around in the backseat of my pickup on old dirt roads.

    Time and time again they have showed me that they know how to make quality and dependable scopes and make you want to return for more.

    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.