The first reaction to seeing a gun featuring one of Proof Research’s carbon-wrapped barrels is the thought “that looks awesome.” But there’s much more to the product than meets the eye– Proof has spent years perfecting the wrapped barrel, resulting in a product that is lighter, more durable, and as accurate as traditional match-grade barrels. The immediate benefit of the lighter weight is noticeable and a real plus to anyone that carries their rifle, either on the job or on a hunt. Their wrapped barrels are 50-64% lighter than traditional all-steel barrels.
The composite barrel is a turned down 416 SS blank that is wrapped using Proof’s proprietary process combining pan and pitch fibers that are bonded to the inner barrel in such a way that the barrels are stiffer (even when heated), with dampened harmonics and faster heat dissipation. This equates to tighter groups.
Proof barrels are available for popular bolt guns, AR15 and AR10 pattern rifles. The barrels range from $900 to $975 and are available now from www.proofresearch.com.Read More
Sitting alone in a sea of weaponlights in the large Surefire booth were 2 new rails that had some very interesting features. At first glance, the RF-F14 ( I have no idea how the nomenclature breaks down) looks to be joining the current wave of minimal slick rails on the market, but the rail’s slots are machined in such a way that you can direct-attach accessories like Surefire’s weapon lights at 45 degree intervals. The top is covered by the standard full-length picatinny rail. The SF rails will come with 2 accessory rail sections for mounting additional accessories. It’s a free floating handguard that mounts using a standard barrel nut and delta ring via a unique cam mechanism and four hex bolts.
It would be a nice touch if they squared off the cross-grooves and allowed some standard, “1-bar” picatinny accessories to mount. That would open compatibility to a huge range of accessories like 3rd party lights, lasers, sights and grips without the need for additional accessory picatinny rail adapters.
The 13.9″ free float rail has an anticipated mid-year release ($TBD), and the 7″ drop-in version (MSRP $345) should be out in late April. www.surefire.comRead More
Bill Geissele and his wife Amy have been on a tear over the past couple years, releasing innovative products that are up to the quality level that Bill established with his famous triggers. SHOT Show ’14 marked the release of their Ergonomic Modular Rail. At first glance, it’s a relatively simple tube rail that gives up some innovative details upon further study.
The Ergonomic Modular Rail is a relatively simple tube rail that gives up some innovative details upon further study. Unless you’re running night vision, there’s really no need for a top rail, so ALG skipped the full-length top rail and instead includes a section of co-witnessing sight rail for a front iron sight.
The handguard is 1 3/4″ in diameter and the 10″ version weighs an almost-not-there 8.96oz; including the barrel nut. It comes with 3 rail sections and steel backing plate hardware. Installation of the barrel nut and handguard are aided by the included shim pack and torque-indicating installation wrench that’s sized use with a section of 3/4″ cheater bar pipe.
One of the most shocking features is the price; from $135 to $145 depending on length. The ALG EMR will fit most AR15 upper receivers and is available in 10″, 12″ and 13″ lengths, in black, gray, or purple. Available now, www.algdefense.com
The R51 is out, and so is the jury.
Coming into SHOT ’14, there were two products that had a lot of buzz and preconceived opinions to go along with it- the G42 and Remington’s R51. From the conversations both online and around the casinos and bars, the world was ready to hate the G42 (mainly for being 380), and excited to see the R51 (Remington’s first new pistol in many many moons).
Having spent a little time with both, I can tell you that the glowing reviews of the G42 are well deserved as are some of the mixed reactions to the R51.
First, the quick factory specs-
The R51 is a complete modernization overhaul of the Remington Model 51 pistol from the early 20th century. It’s built solidly with an aluminum frame and stainless steel slide. It functions via a Pedersen Block action which allows a very low bore design, minimizes felt recoil and allows for the use of +P ammunition. It’s chambered in good old 9mm, features a single-stack 7+1 capacity and fires these rounds through a 3.4″ barrel. There is an unobtrusive grip safety that disappears once you point the pistol. It weighs in at 22oz, but feels a bit lighter in the hand.
The grip is mostly smooth aluminum with a checkered front strap. There are replaceable polymer inserts on either side that will eventually be available in different materials like mother-of-pearl and rosewood, if those are more your style.
The R51 was created for and marketed towards concealed carry use, and to that end, there is not a single sharp edge to be found anywhere- including a gentle curve on the back edge of the rear sight. The sights on top are metal, drift adjustable and highlighted by 3 large, bright white dots. Being a single stack, it is very narrow and should be easy to conceal under almost any shirt.
The value looks to be decent with an MSRP of $420. (Two magazines included, additional magazines available for $29.99/ea). There is a second model available sporting an integrated, trigger guard-mounted Crimson Trace laser (MSRP $609).
So, why all the mixed reactions to the gun? Part of it comes from Remington’s marketing of it- you couldn’t toss a 3-day assault pack anywhere near the Remington booth without hitting the word “subcompact”. Simply put, this gun is not a subcompact. It feels (and measures) like a mid-size handgun, comfortably allowing 3 fingers to fit under the trigger guard. Some people liked it’s 50′s ray gun styling, while others were turned off by it. And curiously, Remington had no samples for media to shoot at SHOT range day, so we all have to take Big Green’s word for all the “percentages of muzzle flip reduction” and “feel of the increased lock time”. Just dry firing, the trigger has a longer-than-expected travel, stacking up slightly just before the break. Finally, it being a new design, real world durability verdicts will have to wait awhile.
One intriguing aspect of the non-tilting barrel design is in conjunction with suppressors. The non-moving barrel theoretically provides a prefect platform for the addition of a compact can, not requiring the extra size, weight, complexity, or cost associated with an integrated recoil booster. It remains to be seen if fellow Remington Outdoor Company element AAC will offer a dedicated booster less can for the R51. In the meantime, it looks and feels just fine with the company’s Ti-RANT 9S.Read More
Diamondhead is releasing a polymer line of their popular flip up Diamond sights. They are spring loaded to pop up with the push of a button, and have NiteBrite photoluminescent inserts on the front sight post and the ears of the rear sight. With a one minute charge from a bright flashlight, the inserts will glow for at least six hours. The front sight post is adjustable for elevation by hand, and the rear sight has .5 MOA windage clicks, and features both large and small apertures.
They will retail for $69 for a rear sight and $49 for the front, and are currently available at http://www.diamondhead-usa.com.
Going in to SHOT Show, I thought I’d be excited about the Remington R51 and hate Glock for making the G42 in .380 instead of 9mm. Boy, was I wrong.
I was first in line to shoot the G42 at Media Day – well, after R. Lee Ermey and the Glock Shooting Team – and I was very, very impressed with how accurate and shootable the G42 is.
I know people will complain that it’s larger than other .380s, but maybe that’s just what the market needed. If it blended in with all the others, the only reason to buy it would be that it was a Glock, which is reason enough for some but not for all. As it is, a non-blowback .380 that’s only a tad larger than a Kel-Tec P3AT but far easier to shoot is a unique option. In fact, it’s worlds apart from other subcompact .380s in terms of ease of use and shooting. Small groups with the G42 are a matter of doing the exact same thing you’d do with a Glock 17 or Glock 19; small groups with my Kel-Tec are a matter of concentration, luck, and animal sacrifice.
Because these pistols are meant for personal defense, making it easier to put rounds on target faster is a very good thing. I’ll grudgingly give Glock a thumbs up for making the Glock 42 the way they did.Read More
Hot on the heels of the two- and three-cell, 650 and 900 lumen Bravo and Charlie flashlights from Elzetta is a single cell model with a reported 300 lumen output. It’ll be available in the summer of 2014 along with a pocket clip. It’s compatible with existing Elzetta tailcaps and bezels, including click and twist and hi/lo tailcaps as well as crenellated and low profile (shown) bezels. No pricing as of yet.Read More
Manta, maker of rail and suppressor covers, has released the MHG2 hand guard grip for top-railed slim forends. It is made of a ribbed rubbery material that is very durable and will not burn or melt. Not only does it provide a very positive grip surface, but it will keep the shooter’s hand insulated against the high temperatures experienced on slim handguards during sustained fire. Wire attachments sit in the gap of a 1913 top rail and fit into the peice at the front and rear. The MHG2 is fitted by the user to the size of the guard by stretching it over the rail and trimming off the unused mounting areas. They will be available by late April and will retail for $49.99.Read More
Line of Fire has introduced their new Roper fast roping glove. It slides over any tactical glove and is secured in the rear with a quick adjustment hook and loop strap. The material is heavy cowhide with a Nomex inside for heat resistance. The interior surface also features the TEGS grip system for a positive grip against the host glove. Line of Fire says that the Roper has been field tested with special operations units and has received positive reviews. The final product is expected sometime in the second quarter of this year and is expected to retail around $80.Read More
The biggest complaint about the IWI Tavor is without a doubt the heavy trigger pull. Timney has addressed this issue with their new trigger for the platform. It is a single stage trigger with a crisp 4.5lb break, and is easily dropped in to replace the existing trigger pack. Retail price will be $353.00 and they are expected to ship in March.Read More