Archive for the 'AR-15s' Category



Birthday Of Eugene Stoner

BY Herschel Smith
6 days, 11 hours ago

November 22, 1922, is the birthday of Eugene Stoner.  Readers know we say the name of Eugene Stoner only in hushed reverence here on these pages.  What better way to remember him than to listen directly to him, and listen to his friends weigh in.

Brownells: How To Identify AR-15 Trigger Springs

BY Herschel Smith
1 week, 2 days ago

Brownells: AR-15 Receiver Forging Marks

BY Herschel Smith
1 month ago

Suspension Of AR-15 Pistol Brace Ban

BY Herschel Smith
1 month, 2 weeks ago

We covered the idea that the recent ATF movements to regulate AR pistol braces as NFA items would have some blowback of Trump support.  There has been further development.

Washington Examiner.

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives has temporarily backed off criminalizing a type of gun used by 3-4 million people in the United States until after the presidential election, likely stoking the issue of gun control.

The New Hampshire maker of a popular styled AR-15 “pistol” today said that the ATF suspended its surprise decision made last week to outlaw the gun, called the “Honey Badger” pistol.

Q, LLC told customers, “Our attorneys received a letter from ATF Chief Counsel Joel Roessner ‘temporarily suspending the Cease and Desist letter’ associated with the Honey Badger Pistol by Q. The letter states that the suspension, will remain in effect for a period of sixty (60) days … unless withdrawn or extended by ATF.’ The stated purpose of the suspension is to allow the Department of Justice an opportunity, ‘to further review the applicability of the National Firearms Act to the manufacture and transfer of the model Honey Badger Pistol firearm.’”

It said the move will delay, though not reverse, the earlier cease and desist until after the election, a tactic the company decried.

“We believe this 60-day suspension is an effort to put manufacturers, distributors, and consumers at ease, and to postpone the issue past the presidential election in hopes that a new administration will take a different view,” said the company, adding, “using licensees as political pawns is unbecoming of a regulatory agency and ignoring the underlying evaluation in this letter is simply irresponsible. Q will not succumb to this level or irresponsibility. Therefore, without further clarification from ATF on their evaluation, we will not continue manufacturing the Honey Badger Pistol.”

[ … ]

Trump officials had been concerned that it would look like the president’s team was targeting the weapon in a move that could turn the 3-4 million owners into felons unless they dismantled or changed their weapons.

However, it is expected that if Joe Biden wins election, the ATF will move forward, likely targeting all of the makers of AR pistols, and even ban the AR-15, dubbed by liberals as an assault weapon.

Well this is fascinating.  The article clearly says that “Trump officials had been concerned …

So apparently they took notice, and noted that this would involve millions of gun owners should this interpretation become finalized.

The article also hints at the fact that the ATF believes that pistol braces violate the NFA, and want to push this in a potential upcoming administration.

They’re banking on a specific election outcome, and clearly signaling their intentions.

Trump officials should have divorced themselves from Wayne LaPierre and taken notice much earlier concerning their bump stock ban.  That involves half a million bump stock owners who became felons overnight.

They’re slow to react and have poor character judgment, not to mention poor proclivities regarding the 2A.

But of course, a Biden administration would be worse, and the ATF knows it.  They have the cover they need should the election outcome go their way.

Every Other Terrible Implement Of The Soldier

BY Herschel Smith
1 month, 2 weeks ago

David Codrea.

Nonetheless, even though they’re “right,” NRA is burying the larger picture by omitting the core purpose of the Second Amendment in its moral and legal arguments. They are ignoring our God-given given right to defend ourselves, our families, and our liberty against tyranny, and our ability to do so with what Continental Congress delegate Tench Coxe called “the sword and every other terrible implement of the soldier.” He and the other Founders considered that “the birthright of an American,” and leaving that contention, and “the Militia of the several States” out of the argument, gives those who would deny our rights all the wiggle room they need to weasel-word their way into whatever infringements they usurp the power to impose.

The second amendment is about the amelioration of tyranny.  It is about defense of home and hearth, both individual and corporate.  For that, we have a God-given right to the sword and every other terrible implement of the soldier.

As an aside, David links this piece entitled “Assault Weapon Lethality.”  The author relies on field reports of soldiers using green tip ammunition (62-gr. steel core), of which it is well known now that while it was deployed because of the tendency for rounds to ricochet off of windshields, having a tendency to ice-pick through targets rather than fragment.

He also relies on a few anecdotes rather than the holistic report of the Stoner system of arms and the 5.56mm (which has killed hundreds of thousands of enemy fighters).  He tries (but fails) to properly engage issues of accuracy, failing to understand that it’s much more difficult to get a semi-automatic rifle to shoot less than about 0.5 – 1 MOA than it is a bolt action rifle.  The comparison he makes between bolt actions and AR-15s is stilted and ill-conceived.

He makes entirely the wrong argument concerning distance shooting, stating that in effect the narrow, light design of the bullet (low sectional density, although he doesn’t use that term) makes it less able to be effected by the air, but in fact the light design also makes it a 400 – 500 meter weapon (because with long distance shooting, it’s effected by air more than heavier bullets).  Then again, it was designed to be a 400 – 500 meter weapon, with crew-served weapons assuming the burden of making some 80 – 90% of kills in previous wars.

He fails to address the fact that some of these many shots on enemy fighters might have been misses, and also fails to address the fact that fully automatic fire has been done away with in favor of 3 round bursts (and my son has told me they never used select fire anyway).  That’s reserved for the M249.  The M4 was never designed to be an area suppression weapon.

I could go on.  I’m a fan of the Stoner system, but whether you are or not isn’t really relevant to this assessment.  Technically, I find the paper to be a poor attempt to engage the technical aspects of shooting, gunsmithing, ballistics, the effect of twist rate in barrel design, the introduction of 75 – 77 grain bullets (or return to 55 gr. and away from the 62 gr.), the effect of barrel length changes (unfortunately, the decrease in length to 10.5″ and even less), the effect of hydrostatic shock, and issues of warfare.

But it’s linked, so read it if you want.  I missed this paper when it came out.  We’ve addressed small caliber lethality before.  It’s probably best if law professors stay way from engineering.

The bottom line is that arguing against the effectiveness of any given gun (even if it’s incorrect) is the wrong way to argue for access to it by the American public.

As to what constitutes a “weapon of war,” everything does.  I can supply documented evidence of the use of bolt action rifles, shotguns (Benelli M4s by the Marine Corps in Now Zad, Afghanistan), explosives, mines, bombs, gas, balloons, pigeons, knives, swords, bows and arrows, pistols, revolvers, sticks, rocks and spears.

What else is there?  I’m sure readers could add to this list.  The argument is retarded.

Will President Trump Let ATF Continue To Rule By Unchecked Diktat With Honey Badger ‘Reclassification’?

BY Herschel Smith
1 month, 2 weeks ago

What I read in this Ammoland article struck me as plausible prior to reading the article as I thought about this.

Sources also tell AmmoLand News that Associate Deputy Director Marvin Richardson, another career bureaucrat, has an ax-to-grind against pistol braces and belives they violate the NFA but doesn’t think that they have the political capital to make a move against the millions of accessories under a Trump presidency. Those inside ATF with knowledge of the situation told AmmoLand News that higher-ups at the ATF believe that they will have the political capital and cover to go after braces under an anti-gun Biden administration.

The same unnamed sources feel that the ATF agency heads are preparing for a Biden victory. They have inferred from conversations with ATF leaders that they are actively working to defeat Trump, and this move was to designed to disenfranchise gun owners just ahead of the election. Although the heads did not say this directly, three independent sources who work closely with the agency heads have verified this interference to be the unspoken truth within the highest halls of the ATF.

It’s possible that the ATF is actively trying to undermine Trump with the gun rights crowd (that has effectively already been accomplished with the bump stock ban and support for red flag laws).  This would be icing on the cake.

On the one hand, this administration is getting hit in all quarters.  On the other hand, it’s Trump’s job to appoint good people who understand tricks like this, and we’ve already seen his lack of good judgment in the people he appoints with whom he surrounds himself (e.g., Sessions, Comey, McCabe, Barr, McMaster, Kelly, much of his white house staff, etc.).

David Codrea has more on the history of the recent kerfuffle over the “Honey Badger.”

Instead of contacting DOJ, GOA asks members to “contact President Trump and let him know that you are counting on him to put a stop to this new ATF overreach and order them to reinstate the Honey Badger Pistol’s status as a pistol equipped with a brace. Then, contact your member of Congress and insist that they cosponsor H.R. 5289, The Home Defense and Competitive Shooting Act.

I understand the sentiment, but I’m not sanguine about its chances of success.  David continues.

That GOA asks members to contact Trump instead of the DOJ is an effort to remind the president that his continued lip service about “our beautiful Second Amendment” followed by his deliberate indifference and even support for outright infringements serves only to demoralize gun owners, which in turn serves the purposes of ban-whatever-he-can Joe Biden. But the fact is, rumblings on this brace nonsense started over a year ago, and the buck for it stops squarely at the president’s desk. We know he’s not a “gun guy,” but he needs to listen to those who are, and I’m not talking about prop marriages of political convenience or do-nothing “advisory boards” designed to pander to the gun vote, but a genuine “cabinet” of serious advocates who will actually have his ear and who he will subordinate his presumptions for and listen to.

“I’m going to surround myself only with the best and most serious people. We want top of the line professionals,” Trump famously pledged in his first campaign. We’re certainly not seeing it at ATF, where the bureaucrats have either taken it on themselves to act like their inconsistent rulings are immutable law subject to no oversight.

“Unbeknownst to the general public, ATF has ordained in private determination letters that it considers ‘any firearm with a length of pull over 13-1/2 inches to be designed to be fired from the shoulder,’ thereby making it a short-barreled rifle,” the Gaetz letter observed. “However, ATF has also privately proclaimed that even firearms under this length of pull can be classified as a short-barreled rifle, if ATF identifies other (and often unspecified) applicable ‘indicators.’”

“Even more troubling are reports that these non-public standards are being used to criminally prosecute unsuspecting gun owners. Given ATF’s refusal to explain these standards, it is impossible for the public to comply with ATF’s ever-changing body of secret law,” Gaetz continued.

I think it’s generally safe to carry your pistol brace firearm to most ranges today (this does not constitute legal advice).  Depending upon the outcome of the election, this may change.  Furthermore, if Trump doesn’t hold the ATF in check, it may change anyway.

Some half a million bump stocks had been sold before the diktat to declare firearms using them to be machine guns.  Many millions more firearms sporting a pistol brace have been sold.

This is a clever strategy to undermine Trump and make gun owners smart where it really hurts.  Remove half a million votes from Trump in the upcoming election (because they were declared felons overnight) and that could swing the election given that his margin of victory was smaller than that in the last election (in spite of his electoral victory).

As for pistol braces, if even a small fraction of owners see Trump doing nothing about the ATF, the deep state has successfully undermined one of his core constituents.

Paul Harrell: How I Clean My AR-15

BY Herschel Smith
1 month, 3 weeks ago

Combined Red Dot And LPVO

BY Herschel Smith
2 months, 2 weeks ago

John Farnam writes at Ammoland.

I love Aimpoints and most other red-dot (non-magnifying) optics, because they’re fast, relatively compact, and with generous eye-relief, I don’t have glass in my face! Yet, SROs tell me that for their job they need more downrange detail than an Aimpoint will provide, even at ranges under 100m.

With Aimpoints (and most other red-dots), you can get a “swing-out magnifier,” but it is bulky, precarious, and gets in the way.

As a practical matter, when shooting in a congested environment without magnification, past 100m I can’t tell what I’m shooting at. In many cases, I can’t adequately identify a threat past 75m.

So, I equipped my wonderful IO (International Ordinance) M4 with a 1×4 Steiner optic (P4Xi) and their excellent low-profile mounting system.

From exchanging email with John he indicates to me that “The Steiner P4Xi that I’m using features an illuminated red dot (with variable intensity) at the center, which can be used when it is hard to make-out the traditional reticle.”

So he’s claiming that the scope he’s using gives him the shorter range red dot performance, along with the LPVO performance for longer distances if he chooses.

A very nice idea.  I don’t happen to do well with flip-to-side magnifiers.  Of course, this scope isn’t cheap.  You may have to break the piggy bank open for it.

Don’t Use Loctite On Your AR-15

BY Herschel Smith
2 months, 2 weeks ago

I don’t anyway.

AR-15 Go Brrr …

BY Herschel Smith
3 months ago


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