Sunday, May 30, 2010
From left to right in the top image: Wilderness magazine pouch, Raven magazine pouch, Ravine G19 holster, MTAC G20 Holster. All on Wilderness Instructor belt.
Raven Concealment Holster & Magazine Pouches
I love the fact that Raven holster systems are modular. I can wear the same holster either inside or outside the waistband by simply swapping out the stock OWB for accessory IWB hooks. I was able to order 1.75” belt loops even though they don’t list them, simply by adding a comment to my online order. I can easily conceal my Glock 19 in this holster under a t-shirt whether it’s worn inside or outside my waistband, though the IWB configuration hugs noticeable tighter to my body. Overall, I prefer IWB carry for everyday concealment and OWB for range use and tactical shooting, but that’s mostly individual preference.
One thing I don’t like about the Raven holster system is the inability to adjust retention strength. Both the holster and magazine pouches are molded kydex and you’re stuck with the factory setting, which is quite strong. I found the gun retention to be nearly perfect, but the magazines are much too difficult to remove for my taste. I have to wear them farther back on my belt to maintain the leverage needed for crisp reloading drills, which complicates things if you find yourself on the ground, especially in the supine position.
Minotaur MTAC Holster
The Minotaur MTAC holster sold by Comp-Tac is a fantastic holster for concealing large handguns like the G20. This leather-kydex hybrid combines the comfort of leather with the rigidity of polymer, and is fully adjustable for retention and cant. In terms of IWB carry efficiency, it’s very close to the Raven holster. You can also purchase addition kydex halves to make the same primary body function with any model of pistol. In the future I’ll probably stick with Raven simply because it can be worn outside of the belt, but if you like the comfort of leather and only desire to carry inside your belt, the MTAC is one of the best options out there.
Wilderness Tactical Belt & Magazine Pouches
I’m generally a fan of products by the Wilderness. They make a fantastic belt: I wear a 5-stitch instructor belt every day, and I couldn’t be happier with it. I also use their slings on two long guns. I hate to say it, but their magazine pouches are garbage. I bought the horizontal style because I thought it would ease concealment, but it’s bulky and wears awkwardly. Even though it was specifically sold to accommodate the 10mm double stack magazines of the Glock 20, the fit is far too tight, and the magazine catches on a seam in the nylon totally preventing smooth draws. So while I recommend most Wilderness products, I’d stay away from their mag pouches.
*The arrangement shown is clearly for illustrative purposes only, and is not intended to be an actual layout for practical carry.
Saturday, May 29, 2010
There are countless subtypes of the 10/22 available from the factory, but I opted for the Sporter (Deluxe Sporter according to Cabela’s) edition, primarily for the high-quality checkered American Walnut stock. When I picked it off the shelf, I was immediately impressed by the quality of the flip-up rear sight and the crisp trigger.
The first day at the range, I shot 675 rounds out of the stock rifle with bulk ammunition without a single hiccup. It was a dream to shoot, and extremely easy to disassemble and clean back at home. It’s no Glock, but cleaning and maintenance on this rifle is just about as simple as it gets. Just one screw to remove the stock, and 2 pins to remove the trigger assembly, and one pin to remove the bolt.
One of the reasons for the huge popularity of the Ruger 10/22 is its customizability and the availability of aftermarket accessories. You turn any run-of-the-mill 10/22 into a specialized hunting rifle, a compact survival tool, a tactical military-style practice gun, or an expensive flashy competition rifle. Most of the 10/22’s out there probably remain in the category of your standard stock weekend plinker, but the potential is there if you want to take advantage of it.
I opted to spend a few bucks optimizing my rifle for hunting small game, since I tend to focus on hunting-style customizations on my long guns. My main addition was a Vortex Crossfire 4x32 scope with Leupold scope rings. The 4x fixed magnification 32mm scope is one of the most popular general-purpose hunting optics ever made, and on a rimfire allows generous accuracy from 25-100 yards and beyond. That’s more than enough for targeting treed squirrels, so I’m happy.
The 10/22 Deluxe Sporter comes with 1” sling swivels, but the availability of slings in this width is lacking. I replaced these swivels with 1.25” quick-detachable swivels and swivel bases from Uncle Mike’s, so I could pair it with a thicker Wilderness sling. If you’re trying to figure out what parts you need to make the same replacement, both swivel taps in the Sporter stock accept ½” wood screws.
All 10/22’s come with one 10-round rotary magazine. Before experiencing this style of magazine I’ll admit I was skeptical about it, but they are incredibly reliable and compact. I’ve shot over 700 rounds through one of my rotary magazines without a single failure whatsoever, without cleaning it at all. I’m impressed considering how dirty rimfire cartridges can get after high-volume shooting.
I purchased a 25-round steel extended magazine by TacticalInc.com, but I can’t comment on this yet. These magazines are adjustable by 4 different screws, and so far I haven’t found a configuration that feeds or ejects reliably. I hope I can tune this magazine properly, since a high-capacity .22 could prove quite useful during a zombie apocalypse. I'll update everyone later on whether this mag is functional or a piece of junk, I just haven't figured it out yet.
The Ruger 10/22 has quickly become one of my favorite guns that I’ve ever shot. It’s accurate at close to medium ranges, useful for hunting and survival applications, and is American-made. It’s light weight in relation to other hunting rifles helps in making it highly portable, but its low mass makes off-hand shooting a bit of a challenge, so a shooting rest or proper shooting position is preferable for ethical kills. The price of .22LR ammunition easily allows high-volume shooting on any budget, and this is the kind of gun you can shoot all day for the price of going out to a movie. A .22 will eventually pay for itself in ammo savings along, but it’s also a blast to shoot.
Friday, May 28, 2010
Just recently I had the opportunity to purchase a
Just recently I had the opportunity to purchase a
History of the
After World War Two the French continued to use the
The new designation for the rifle was
This new variant of the rifle saw much turbulence as
Mechanics of the
At the end of the Great War the French took ideas implemented by rifles of the major participating countries, both allied and enemy. Some of these include the bent curve found on the American P1917 Enfield, the 5 round box magazine of the German Gewehr, and the design of the locking lugs on the bolt from the British Lee
Unlike the early
I had a great opportunity when buying this rifle. The gentlemen whom I bought it from originally purchased it in 1999 and had never shot it. When I picked it up it was still covered in packing grease I can only imagine was from the 1960s when it was taken out of service.
Overall thoughts on the rifle are pretty high. The rifle is built like a tank and the weight for such a relatively short rifle shows it. The sights are crude but allows for a soldier or even untrained peasant to be considerably accurate. The action of the bolt is not smooth or crisp but gives the feeling of robustness. Overall the
That’s it for now, stayed tuned more to come.