19 Oct 16

Follow-up on Rifle and Gear, from a Friend and Colleague:

“Fifteen years ago, when we had ten AR’s in a Class, at least half would be dead-lined by the middle of the first day!

No longer the case!

Modern ARs, from any quality manufacturer (STS, BCM, LaRue, Doublestar, DSA, S&W, Anderson, Warrior Arms, Daniel Defense, SIG, LWRC, POF, RRA, LMT, Robar, M4 Precision, et al), are going to run fine. Over the past few decades, modern machining and manufacturing, D-rings, and advances in lubricants, materials, and coatings have adequately addressed most major Stoner-system issues.

But in America, we are too hardware-oriented, and not nearly enough software-oriented! No one wants to go to the gym and work-out. Taking pills represents the limit of most people’s willingness to personally improve.

Likewise, few want to go through the rigors of bona-fide training. Instead, they load-up their guns, and themselves, with glamorous gimmicks, ever seeking (in vain) a mechanical substitute for personal competence.

‘Military cosplay’ is what we call it. ‘Cosplay’ translates to ‘costume play’ It’s what the comic-book crowd does at their conventions. They dress-up like their favorite super-hero or Star Wars character.

For our part, we try our best to convince our students that the ‘pretend world’ has no place in our discipline, and ‘pretenders,’ with their ‘kiddy-guns,’ ‘kiddy-ammunition,’ and ‘kiddy-costumes’ are only kidding themselves, dangerously!

Much of this is not ‘obvious,’ but it will be painfully revealed during hard training!


When going prone, it’s bad enough to have a single layer of magazines on your ‘chest-rig,’ but now we have double-rows, with a third row of pistol magazines in front of that! You end-up looking like a fishing bobber bouncing on top of the water!

Strap-ends, of assorted descriptions, need to all be taped or otherwise secured. Students often inadvertently re-holster pistols, while errant chest-rig strap-tails are dangling into holsters.

Pistol and rifle magazines should not be carried in the same place. We’ve seen more than one student desperately attempt to cram a Glock magazine into an AR magazine well!

Some weapon-lights have a curiously ergonomic thumb-activated pressure-switch. Actually works pretty well, until the shooter switches shoulders! Then, when using the other hand, the shooter unhappily discovers the pressure-switch is now inaccessible!

EOTechs and Aimpoints run fine. As much as we all complain about expensive red-dots and holographics, it seems that we get what we pay for. Cheap knock-offs have proven far less satisfactory.

Cheap sling-swivels and sling attachment-points: We seen them wear through, to the point that the locking-mechanism spring, which keeps tension on the ball bearings, actually pops through the bottom. The instant result is that the student’s sling falls off, and his rifle then falls to the deck, with the muzzle invariably augering into the mud!

Don’t equip your rifle with such cheap garbage! Few, on their own, ever run their rifles hard enough to wear-out cheap junk. As noted above, only hard training will cause most critical flaws to reveal themselves.

Get your rifle running when you can, but when your pistol is in your hand, and working, keep fighting. You can make 40m shots with you pistol, assuming you’ve practiced!

All military rifles have sights and triggers, and nothing we can buy will precisely align those sights, and carefully press our triggers for us. Once again, what will save us is a competent repertoire of well-practiced skills, combined with personal self-control, not some glittering gimmick you’ve attached to a rail!

Our students are with us, because they have a bad feeling about the direction our nation, and our civilization, is headed. Food storage, medical training, communications, ammunition stores re all topics we hear discussed during breaks.

There’s usually one or two in every class. Now, it’s everyone!

Interesting times!”

Comment: Interesting indeed!