Contents

Trending: Best Places to Buy Ammo Online and [Buyer's Guide] 7 Best AR-15s I know what you’re thinking: “Ugh, another budget red dot?” Sure, these things are like flies in summer these days, but there is a good reason for that. We’ve finally entered an era where red dots can be cheap and good . Shocking, right? You skeptics can relax.

[Hands-on Review] Bushnell TRS-26: Improved & Reliable

[Hands-on Review] Bushnell TRS-26: Improved & ReliableTrending: Best Places to Buy Ammo Online and [Buyer's Guide] 7 Best AR-15s I know what you’re thinking: “Ugh, another budget red dot?” Sure, these things are like flies in summer these days, but there is a good reason for that. We’ve finally entered an era where red dots can be cheap and good . Shocking, right? You skeptics can relax. We love beating up cheap red dots to help our readers make informed opinions before opening their wallets. Pandemic Spare Parts AR-9 Today, we’re going to evaluate if the Bushnell TRS-26 can join the growing pantheon of worthy red dots. I dropped it, kicked it, and shot with it to find an answer, so let’s get started! Table of Contents Loading... Bushnell: The Next Generation For years, the Bushnell TRS-25 (full review) has held the crown for being an affordable and accurate red dot that’s still worth its price tag, especially for beginners new to shooting and optics. Bushnell TRS-25 But make no mistake; it’s a reliable option for the experienced gun owner on a budget as well. Most Affordable Red Dot Bushnell TRS-25 80 at Amazon Prices accurate at time of writing View Details 80 at Amazon Compare prices (3 found) Amazon (See Price) Brownells (See Price) Optics Planet (See Price) Prices accurate at time of writing Eric has equipped the TRS-25 for well over 3,000 rounds, while I’ve shot about 1,500 5.56 rounds and 500 rounds of buckshot and slugs. Alas, this old model isn’t without its issues. It failed our drop test (boy, did it), and the mounts it came with are known for being…ultra-cheap, and not in a good way. Bushnell TRS-25 Vs. Rock. Always a fun experiment, but the results didn’t quite make us smile In short, it was good enough for the range and barely acceptable for home defense, but not a product to rely on at a rough carbine class. But the updated model, the TRS-26, is one number higher, so it has to be better, right? TRS-26 Basic Stats Good news! Based on the stat sheet, we can already tell that the TRS-26 is a HUGE improvement over the TRS-25. Just look at this comparison chart: TRS-25 TRS-26 Battery Life 3,000 Hours 50,000 Hours Obj. Lens 25mm 26mm Auto Off No Yes Brightness Settings 11 12 Weight 113g 170g As you can see, the biggest jump is in the product’s battery life. It can be argued that 50,000 hours have become the industry standard for optics, so it’s nice to see Bushnell keeping pace. Range Report Testing for the TRS-26 was mostly done with my Pandemic Build AR-9 and 600 rounds of 9mm. To be thorough (and to have fun), I also threw it on my HD AR-15 for about 300 rounds of 5.56. No problems. You will experience some minor color distortion when looking through the TRS-26. This is because the manufacturer applies a coating to the lens that improves the visibility of the dot. Personally, the green tint doesn’t bother me. But your mileage may vary. The discoloration is exaggerated in this picture because cameras are weird. It’s a light green tint at best in real life. And waaaay better compared to the old TRS-25. Bushnell TRS-25 Green Hue Buttons and Brightness Where the TRS-25 has a large dial on the side to adjust brightness, the TRS-26 has fairly large and easy to mash rubberized buttons instead. I like the dial better, but the buttons work as intended so I can’t really complain. The zero adjustments are basically the same as the TRS-25; they work but are nothing to write home about. That said, I think the caps are definitely an improvement. They feel a bit more beefy and able to take a good punch. Bushnell TRS-26 brightness adjustment buttons and post-drop damage. Oh, spoiler alert btw. The brightness of the 3 MOA dot is hands-down awesome—even in the desert hellscape of California, I was able to see clearly and use the dot without having to keep it on the max setting. Know what that means? A longer battery life! New Mount This new mount is NICE . One of the main issues we had with the TRS-25 is that the mount sucks. Period. It really does. But this one is good to go. First off, the TRS-26 uses a standard T1 mounting footprint, so there are boatloads of aftermarket options to explore. Secondly, this mount is just better in every conceivable way: It’s stronger, easier to use, and it held zero after being removed and replaced. Bushnell TRS-26 mount, held zero after being removed and replaced! During my range trips, I switched back and forth between the TRS-26 and the Holosun 510C-GR Elite . There are no issues to report, and both mounts held their zeroes multiple times. Success! Holosun 510C-GR Elite 340 at Amazon Prices accurate at time of writing View Details 340 at Amazon Prices accurate at time of writing But a red dot not dying during normal use is basically the bare minimum of what I expect from any red dot these days, so I went a few steps further with the TRS-26. Meet Steve “Steve” is the name of the rock that volunteered by proximity to serve as my assistant in drop testing the TRS-26. Steve is a good rock. Steve: part-time optics tester, full-time rock, a hero to us all. The test itself is simple: Drop the product on a rock and see what happens. I started with a group of Wolf steel cased 115gr 9mm and a group of CCI Blazer Grass 124gr 9mm. Both groups were shot at 30 yards as a means of testing the POI (Point of Impact) shift post-drop. I’m 6’2” and dropped this baby at chest-height, so the gun experienced a good 5’ of air before hitting Steve, my trusty testing companion. No rocks were harmed in the making of this video. (No, Steve is not available for comment.) Right off the bat, I could see that the battery cover took the brunt of the blow, and now it’s peened a bit and can’t be moved by hand. But the main concern is if the drop broke anything important or shifted POI. The dot was on—a good sign, but I still had to shoot it. Again: two groups, 30 yards, Wolf and CCI ammo. Here is the before and after shot: Left upper: CCI 124gr before drop, Right upper: CCI 124gr after drop | Lower left: CCI 124gr before drop, Lower right: Wolf 115gr after drop To my eye, the POI did not shift. Keep in mind that this isn’t match ammo, and the dot is 3 MOA, so precision groups are…well, not exactly precise. But the POI is the same before and after dropping the TRS-26, and that’s what matters most! Now, as for the battery… TRS 26 Drop Damage I tried to remove the battery cover with a coin and a screwdriver but didn’t have any luck. After I got home, I was finally able to remove and reinstall it using a pair of pliers. Honestly, that’s not a deal-breaker, in my opinion. With a 50,000-hour battery life, it’s unlikely that you’ll need to replace the battery anyway. But if you do, you certainly can. At home. Replacing a battery is not something I consider “in the field maintenance” unless you have no other choice. What I Don’t Love For me, the only real downside to the TRS-26 is the auto-off. If this is a range gun, then an auto-off doesn’t matter either way. However, if you want to install this product on a home defense weapon, I can’t say that I’m a fan of the auto-off if it doesn’t also have an auto-on—and the TRS-26 does not have an auto-on feature. The TRS-26 is a solid optic for a fun day at the range. Picture this: You’re startled awake because something is going bump in the night, and it’s definitely not the dog. The atmosphere is tense and danger is creeping up the stairs. You raise your rifle…only to discover that the optic isn’t turned on because you forgot to hit the button. In life and death situations, the little details always matter. For this reason, I struggle to recommend the TRS-26 as an HD optic for home defense, especially when there are so many other red dots that come with an auto-on function, including almost any Holosun and the Sig Sauer Romeo5 . Brutally Tested Budget Red Dot "Sig Sauer Romeo5" 149 at Palmetto State Armory Prices accurate at time of writing View Details 149 at "Palmetto State Armory" Compare prices (3 found) Palmetto State Armory (See Price) Optics Planet (See Price) Amazon (See Price) Prices accurate at time of writing And that’s disappointing because it’s a great optic in every other respect. So, Who Should Buy the TRS-26? The TRS-26 is an excellent optic for any kind of recreational rifle or shotgun—and it comes at a great price! Bushnell TRS-26 140 at Optics Planet Prices accurate at time of writing View Details 140 at Optics Planet Prices accurate at time of writing Hunting shotgun? Range plinker? Ready to try out competitive shooting? The TRS-26 has you covered. I really like having it on my Pandemic AR-9. With the 26mm lens, the TRS-26 gets on target fast and cleanly, which is great for short range 9mm PCC blasting or local competition shooting. If you’re in the market for an optic you don’t have to treat with white gloves to have fun with, the TRS-26 is very high on my list. But if you want an HD optic, I would recommend a product with an auto-on function that doesn’t mess around when you need to pull it out of the safe or off the wall. If want to learn more about red dots, check out our hands-on review 8 Best Red Dot Sights: Rifle, Pistol s , & All Budgets . Still struggling to decide between red dots and holographic sights? Oh, have we got your back! Click the link to find out What’s Best For You? By the Numbers Reliability: 5/5 There are dozens of cheap red dots on the market that can’t survive the rock abuse I literally dropped on the TRS-26. Sure, the battery cover is a bit harder to take off now, but it held zero and functioned after the fall. And that’s the detail that truly matters. Accuracy: 5/5 A 3 MOA dot is a little big for a rifle, but it works and holds zero. While precision groups won’t be your thing, it gets on target faster and is easier to pick up. Great for a beginner! Ergonomics 4/5 Okay, so I don’t love the illumination buttons, but that’s my only gripe. Everything else is spot on. Bang for the Buck/Value: 5/5 Bushnell’s OG TRS-25 was an out of the park home run on value. The TRS-26 is more expensive, but the increase in cost really delivers on features, quality, and function. The improved mount alone is worth the extra money. Overall Rating: 5/5 This isn’t the optic I would take to war, but for a range gun, training rifle, and maybe home defense, the TRS-26 is on the very short list of optics I would trust with my life that are under $350. Conclusion The TRS-26 is a great successor to the TRS-25, and well worth the increase in cost. It has an awesome mount that uses a common footprint, durable to trauma, and huge battery life makes this a solid and respectable optic. I’m a little disappointed in the auto-off, especially since there isn’t an option to disable it, but in every other way, the TRS-26 performed well above my expectations. Is this the budget red dot for you? What will you put it on? Let us know in the comments! Also check out our Best AR-15 Optics . Interested in some high-end testing, take a look at the High-End Optics Torture Test [Trijicon, EOTech, Aimpoint, Sig Sauer] ! Group Shot of Destroyed Optics

Set Your Gun Up to Force Effective Recoil Management

Set Your Gun Up to Force Effective Recoil Management

We like to think of the AR15 as an ergonomic weapon. It is… but those ergonomic advantages are lost on many shooters, especially new shooters, after they set up their gun for comfort. I came across this video the other day: All respect to the soldier and his skill, but take a look at the rifle bouncing around. Look at the use of the toe of the M4’s butt-stock. The advantages of the AR15’s “in-line-design” are lost with the soldier’s firing technique. He may just be fooling around on the range, or perhaps he is really working a few targets. All good, and again, all respect for the individual because I don’t know the back-story of this video , but we can see lots of muzzle flip due to the technique being used. Can you visualize his red dot jumping all over his visual field? I can. Not A Pillow The rifles butt-stock is not a pillow for your face. Every point of contact that you have with the weapon is a point of weapon control . Many new shooters will adjust accessories for comfort: they will place a red dot on the gun and then adjust the stock so that everything is ergonomic for them… typically this means they will use the toe of the stock to mount the weapon so they don’t have to crane their neck down into the optic or sights. It may be comfortable to bring everything up without having to move your head, but we don’t want to develop sloppy shooting technique by what is comfortable. We want control. Adjusted to comfort with poor recoil management. The recoil reduction benefits of the AR15’s “in line” design are lost in this example. Recoil forces go over the shoulder and enhances muzzle flip. Take a look at my rifle. Over the years of shooting I have learned the above… adjusting the rifle to your comfort is not always advantageous for your shooting. My current knowledge and use of the rifle dictates that I mount the optic (in this case an ACOG) further down the rail and extend the butt-stock a few clicks out. Here I have positioned the ACOG to force a “nose to charging handle hold”. By craning the neck forward i can place the entire butt-stock in the shoulder pocket to manage recoil. When I shoot my rifle like this, I have to crane my neck down into the weapon to get a proper sight picture through the ACOG. With the stock a few clicks out, I have to force the weapon into my shoulder pocket. This shooting technique is not comfortable, but it controls the rifle and recoil comes straight back to the shoulder instead of over the shoulder. Further recoil is suppressed by my face forcing the rear of the gun down. Set up as it is, I must support a good shooting technique to even acquire the sights. The short eye relief of the ACOG further forces my face in a *specific place* on the rifle. If you are using a red dot, adjust your stock and force yourself to use the nose to charging handle technique. Learning As You Go The great thing about sticking with something is that you can really appreciate your skill as you reach for excellence. So many people have helped me along the way that I have lost count. From blog suggestions to firing techniques at the range… I have learned to shoot my AR’s better because I have placed myself in the company of shooters. Spending your time in the company of shooters, both online and at the range, will propel your skills forward. As I learn more and gain in skill, I have come to fully appreciate the knowledge of these guys i have met both online and offline. Appreciate it Gentlemen. Share: Google Twitter Facebook Pinterest Reddit More Tumblr LinkedIn Pocket Email Print

Survival Eating

Survival Eating

Food is not just a source of energy and sustenance, but a comfort item as well. When you are hungry, morale goes down and chances of survival dwindle.  There will be several opportunities to find food after the supermarkets close, you just need to know where to look and what tools to have. The first thing you need to know is that meat will only take you only so far.  If you read Meriwether Lewis’s journals from their exploration; the men still felt hungry although they were eating several pounds of meat per day.  You can eat 10 rabbits a day and still “starve” as rabbit lacks everything except protein for your body’s survival. Quick Navigation Trapping Fishing Hunting Gathering Gardening Livestock Summary Trapping Trapping is the most feasible option to maintain a steady supply of fresh meat for the “table”.  There are several traps and many more that can be improvised.  Many people have trapped animals, even if it was just setting a mouse trap to get rid of a pest. The most important thing to prepare for using traps to supply food is to educate oneself on the habits and lifestyles of the animals in your area.  If you must travel to your secure location, remember to research and study the areas for the areas you will need to travel through.   My experiences are mostly in the Midwest and Southeastern US, so some tips or items may not be as suitable for a Western environment but I will try and offer tips based on what I have read or been told by trappers/outdoors-men in those areas. Animal tracks are a sure sign that something is or has been in the area. Tracks can be the obvious footprints in the sand or dirt but can also be as subtle as the scratches on a tree trunk or small holes dug into the ground where your prey was hunting their own meal. Several books are available for studying the footprints of the animals so you can know what animal you are targeting is.  I’d prefer NOT to trap a skunk or opossum unless they are my only choice.  Time and energy spent on setting traps for the wrong animal are time and energy you will not get back.  Also, setting a rat trap or 110 body grip trap for a raccoon or ground hog is wasted time, as you will not be using the proper tools. There are several different brands and sizes of store bought traps available on the market. The 3 major types are: 1) Foothold traps – These come in a variety of sizes and even styles.  There are single jaws (most common) and double jaws; toothed (think of the old bear traps) or smooth jaw; long spring or coil spring.  The long spring has single or double long springs which are made by “folding” a piece of spring metal over and then pinching it to allow the trap to be set.  Tension is supplied by the animal stepping on the “pan” and releasing the lock, which allows the long spring to expand back to its “U” shape and thus applies pressure holding the trapped animal. Coil spring traps use coil springs either in a double or 4 coil set up.  The more coils, the stronger the traps strength to hold an animal, but too much strength can break a bone and thus allow the animal to tear off its foot and escape (thus the legend was born of animals “chewing” their leg off to escape a trap). Trap sizes increase with the “number”.  The added weight of the long springs is useful for drowning rig set ups, but coil spring traps are smaller for packing. 2) Body grip (commonly referred to as connibear)- These traps are square in shape and they normally kill the prey upon capture. They utilize 1 or 2 springs and a single trigger/lock mechanism.  They come in 3 common sizes, 110, 220, 330, size grows with the number.  Some manufacturers have “middle sizes as well, but they are not as common. When selecting these traps, read the description and choose the trap by the opening size (110 = 7inch by 7 inch opening; normally) and what you will need for the animals in your area for planning purposes.  I use 110’s for squirrel, muskrat, rabbit, etc for planning purposes, 220 for raccoon, ground hog, fox, etc; and 330 for beaver, coyote, really big raccoons, etc.  Some reading this will wonder why I included foxes and coyotes but if you are secure in your homestead and something raids the chicken coop or garden plot; you may have to trap for varmint control as well as food. 3) Snares – These handy gems can be bought already made or obtained by buying the different components and making custom sized snares for game not normally trapped in today’s normal living conditions. Snares are designed to catch an animal as it walks through the hoop of the snare and then being strangled. You can fix these to small saplings or branches being bent and anchored to a stake with a trigger device to spring back to their original position and creating a very fast choke or even breaking the neck of the prey. Most modern snares are made from aircraft cable of 5/32 or 3/16 inch diameter. You can also use heavier gauge as long as it is pliable and you customize the hardware for the thicker cable. Snares can also be improvised from a variety of materials, fishing line being a natural choice. I carry braided line with 60# test or higher for such purposes and also to use for limb lines. Regular sewing thread or light weight (2-4#) fishing line is useful for securing the snare to brush or fencing to keep its shape and stay in place once set.   Snares made from 6-10# fishing line works well for birds. For hiking in parts of Alaska and Canada (possibly other locations), it is required by law that you have a couple snares in your pack and the knowledge to use them. These are the main types of animal traps used for trapping fur-bearers for their pelts. They can add immense possibilities to the prepper for putting food on the table if and when the need arises.  Improvised traps are also very important; not only will they be used if caught in an emergency where you don’t have your kit, i.e. an aircraft crash since we can’t carry our kits as a carry on. Deadfalls are probably the best known and easiest to construct improvised trap.  These are created by using an object or objects that weigh enough to kill the intended target by crushing it.  Rocks, trees, branches, cast off equipment or materials (bricks, sandbags, vehicle parts, etc) can all be used for the weight. You balance the weight and attach the bait to a trigger, a type 4 trigger is the most common but takes practice to make, and when the animal pulls on the bait, it causes the weight to fall and crush it.  You can also use a manual trigger by attacking a string or rope to the brace and pulling the brace out manually once the target enters the “kill zone.”  This can be practiced by using a laundry basket and catching birds in the back yard, great training and practice for the little ones and it will teach them patience and the need to be quiet and still.  The basket or a bucket can also be used in a survival situation to catch small animals in the same manner, just know that the target will still be alive and will need to be approached with care. Pitfalls or punji pits can also be used. These are simple in design but require a lot of work to make. By digging a hole deep enough and covering it so the target does not see it, they can be lured to the pit or dig it along a trail they travel. The pit must be deep enough and/or lined so the target cannot climb or jump out.  By adding punji stake (sharpened sticks) to the trap, you will injure, maim or kill whatever falls into the trap.  This will help ensure the animal stays but can also become dangerous to unsuspecting people falling into the pit.  These are also dangerous to livestock or pets, so use common sense and care when utilizing these traps. Fish traps are also a valuable commodity to use for gathering food. These are normally constructed on site, using natural materials combined with brought items.  By placing obstacles, sticks, rocks, boards, etc, in the waterway, you funnel the fish swimming through at a certain point.  At this point, place a net and anything swimming through will be captured.  You can also use fencing [poultry netting (chicken wire) works best for its pliability and small mesh size).  Form the fencing into a cylindrical shape and fasten it together with cable ties, rope, tie wire, etc.  After gauging the opening size, cut more of the fencing used to form a “funnel” to fit into the opening(s); if only 1 funnel is used, you must form a “wall” on the opposite end to secure the trap.  The funnel needs to extend into the trap about 1/8 – ¼ the length of the cylinder and reduce in size down to an opening that will allow the fish to swim in but not so big they can swim out extremely easy.  The idea is they will have room to swim out, but by have the funnel opening centered in the trap, most fish will miss the opening and not swim out.  You may lose some, but the majority of any fish swimming in will be there when you check your traps.  You can add bait by attaching small bags filled with bait to the fencing.  I like attaching mine to the bottom to get the fish to swim away from the opening of the funnel. A practice trap can be made by cutting a 2 liter pop (soda) bottle off just after it gets to its full size.  By turning this around and inserting it into the body of the bottle with the pour spout inside the bottle, you now have a minnow trap to collect bait. Punch small holes through the bottom of the bottle and sides to allow water to flow through it.  I use a small rod of re-bar to anchor this to the creek bed.  Secure the cut off portion with glue is best, but if the cut is made cleanly it can be held with friction.  Place the opening to the upstream side, so water pressure will build and help hold the top in the bottle body. This will also give a visual of what a bigger trap made from fencing should look like.   This type of trap will also catch crabs, lobster, crawdads and even some small marine mammals. Traps can more than pay for themselves on the return of food and even pelts for clothing, pot holders, blankets, etc in a survival situation. There are several books on the subject written by people with a lot more experience than me.  If possible and legal to do so, practice trapping animals before the need arises and your learning curve means whether you and your family eat or not. You can get clips to hold body grip traps in the “set” position on the side of a tree.  Bait the trigger wires with corn or nutmeats, even peanut butter, and squirrels will come to feast on your offering and roasted squirrel or stew is on the menu.  The clips are sold via trapper supply houses for marten and fisher trappers.  The clips can also be improvised out of small pieces of conduit or pipe.  The spring on the body grip trap can have a rope tied to it and secured to a branch so it will swing the trap and your catch away from the tree to keep scavengers from easily stealing your meal.  I carry a few premade snares, two 110 sized body grip traps and 1 #4, four coil trap in my rucksack or in my MOLLE vest.  I also carry heavy weight (60# +) braided fishing line to improvise snares.  I carry lighter weight fishing line for snares for birds or to use as sewing thread to repair clothes or gear. Remember to get repair parts for any traps you have and acquire the skill to repair them. Fishing There are several articles written, as well as countless books, on the subject of fishing. I will only briefly touch on the subject.  I recommend using limb lines in a survival fishing situation. You use a heavy weight line and attach this to a very sturdy branch overhanging or very near the water source.  I prefer one with a little flexibility to allow for the fish to fight without breaking or ripping the hook from its mouth. Limb lines can be utilized using normal store bought hooks or improvising natural materials into something to hold the fish. “ Skewer hooks ” can be made easily and very quickly, even by a child. You take a piece of wood and sharpen both ends to a dull point.  You can rough up the “barrel” of the wood to help hold the bait or even tie the bait on with string.  You attach the line by tying it around the barrel in the center of the piece of wood.  When the fish swallows the bait and the skewer, it will lodge in its throat or guts, depending on size of fish.  When you pull the line, it will cause the skewer to turn sideways and thus make an extremely strong hold on the fish allowing you to haul it in.  If using limb lines in waters with a large turtle population, they can be used to catch turtles as well, but I would recommend using steel leaders to help keep the turtles from biting the line off. Treble hooks work extremely well, but until used for a true survival situation, they are normally illegal, so check your local laws.  You can also cut pantyhose down, tie it around the bait and use it to help keep fish from stealing the bait.  Safety pins and needles can also be used to adapt something from its intended purpose to use as a makeshift hook.  These will not be barbed, so extra care is needed to maintain control over your fish once caught.  I would also recommend buying and using cane poles even during routine fishing outings.  I love my spin cast and bait cast reels coupled with a good rod, but if they break, a branch more closely resembles a cane pole than a $300 rod and reel combo.  Throw nets or casting nets are also valuable in obtaining fish.  These do require practice, but the return can be very rewarding and the difference between a full belly and an empty one. I’d even try and obtain topo maps of the lakes, rivers, streams, etc for the area you will be when the need arises. This will give you bottom structure and locations for optimum limb line locations. Hunting Several articles have been written and posted on hunting.  This is the method most people plan on obtaining their meat in a survival situation.  Study the animals in your chosen area and learn all you can about their habits, food sources, activity cycles (nocturnal or diurnal), and home (burrows, nests, meadow, water, lodge (muskrat and beaver), etc).  Choose a weapon that will easily take the game animal but not ruin the meat; you do not want to hunt a rabbit with a .308 or a 12 gauge slug.  A .22 long Rifle will take most animals, even deer, with proper shot placement. Using a .22 LR are illegal to take certain game, so read game laws before using in a non survival situation.  If I was able to choose just 1 higher powered rifle, I would choose a .308 Win./7.62mm .  They are available on an AR platform for those who want the self loader or even the battle proven M14 (Springfield’s M1A1).  A bolt action would be fine or even a pump.  The reason I would choose the .308 is several fold; 1)  They are a common caliber and ammunition will be available; 2)  They have much more range and power over the .223/5.56mm, I can hunt medium game like antelope and deer with a .308 but would NOT want to tackle a moose, elk or bear with a .223; 3)  The added firepower will allow me to keep the 2-legged varmints farther out of their preferred range and in the ranges I practiced at before I had to use it.  Optics are also a requirement in my opinion. A good survival rifle will have open iron sights as a backup, as scopes get broken, but optics allow for a more accurate shot placement when the adage of “every shot counts” is truly “gospel” in a survival situation.  Ammunition can be in very short supply and harvesting that game means you and yours eat is not the time to try shots that you can brag about, the only bragging that needs done will be when you carry in that nice venison haunch. Blackpowder weapons will be an excellent choice for a survival weapon if you also gain the knowledge to make your own blackpowder and cast your own lead balls. I would recommend a flintlock over percussion cap. Flint can be picked up in just about every corner of the US. By casting your own lead balls and making blackpowder, you can have a long term firearm to hunt with and conserve your center fire ammunition for real emergencies and self defense. Muzzleloading weapons act and shoot differently than center fire weapons; flintlocks can have a “lag” between the time you pull the trigger and the time the powder actually ignites to propel the ball down the barrel. If you choose to use this type of survival tool, please get one as early as possible and practice to learn the intricacies of this traditional food gatherer. Archery equipment, especially the knowledge on how to build self bows such as the Native Americans, would be a great asset. They are quiet, can take a multitude of game, can be replaced (if capable of making them) and arrows can be made also. Their use will save ammunition for self defense and extremely dangerous game (bears, mountain lions, wolves, feral dogs, etc). Do not underestimate the power and ability of a slingshot to put dinner on the table.  It is easy to find ammunition; any rock will do and are perfect for the younger hunters.  They are quiet and capable hunters, especially when using lead round balls . They are modestly priced and found at almost every discount and department store. You can “store” vast amounts ammo for it and nobody be the wiser; just do some landscaping and use river rock instead of mulch. Regardless of equipment and tactics, make sure you get as close as possible and take the sure shot.  Those nice antlers only mean you can make another tool, while does and yearlings usually have more tender meat and are an easier quarry.  Always choose the sure shot.  Other uncommon tools for hunting include, spears, air guns , boomerangs /throwing sticks, and even a bolo. The biggest thing is to practice with whatever method(s) you choose so as to be an expert in their use as there is NO substitution for knowledge about your intended game animal(s). Gathering Gathering wild edibles will greatly enhance your meals and chance of survival. Several books are written and a must have at least in the survival retreat or Bug Out Location (BOL).  I would also find a small one to keep in your Bug Out Bag (BOB) like the book from Judy of the Woods .  Sassafras root makes a good tea and even chewing the leaves will cause saliva to be generated to help reduce thirst or just give you peace of mind from food, similar to chewing gum. Cattails are one of nature’s greatest survival gifts. You can eat the young shoots, the roots are like a potato, and even the seed (the part on top that gets to looking like a dusty corn cob) is a great flour additive, added to stew or can be eaten on its own.  Some other plants to learn and know are: Solomon’s Seal, May Apple, wild berries, any nut tree, pine needles (for tea), pine cones for pine nuts (place a “closed” pine cone near a fire and they will “open” to obtain the nuts/seeds inside), birch sap (can be made into a great syrup for your acorn pancakes), wild mint, swamp cabbage palm in the southern swamps, fish eggs, mushrooms, etc. These items are edible in whole or in part and will provide extra flavor and much needed calories in an emergency.  Please read books or find someone who can give precise instructions on edible plants and try them before it becomes necessary. Remember, all bird eggs are edible; many are small but they will provide calories and much needed nutrients.  Eggs dipped in wax can be held up to a month without refrigeration or spoilage. That little extra bird feed and the bird houses while times are good; could be a bountiful investment for when times get bad.  I would also recommend books on wild herbs to help with the seasoning of food and natural medicine once the pharmacy is looted. Gardening Gardening has been covered in depth , so I will only add to the obvious benefit of growing food, the garden plot will bring in wild game to trap or hunt.  Also, planting fruit trees in advance will supply fresh fruit to the diet and animals will travel long distance to eat a sweet dessert like an apple.  This will bring the game to you and thus reduce risk and visibility by having to venture further and further from your secure location.  I would also think about establishing a pond for fish farming and if the space is available, digging deep ditches for irrigation and drawing animals for water.  Dams can be used to control water depth. Also, if able, a greenhouse will allow year round growing. You can add bee hives to the greenhouse and the bees will pollinate the crops and give you a natural sweetener. Honey also has many medicinal uses and when the going gets rough and many comfort items are no longer available, who wouldn’t want something sweet to help boost morale? Livestock Raising livestock is also important, but does require land to use as pasture.  Goats would be a prime animal, they will supply meat, milk and depending on the breed, wool to make cloth from.  This all takes more knowledge and land, which some of us may or may not have.  Poultry will help eat bugs in the garden, supply meat and eggs, act as an alarm system (geese and guineas), eat weeds from the garden (geese), and can supply down for quilts if the situation turns into a truly long term event. These are but suggestions to stimulate ideas and comments from others to bring a more balanced and as close to full thought process on the subject of feeding ourselves in the worst of times.  Everyone’s location and access to land and other resources will dictate how we must personalize any ideas to meet our needs, abilities, and resources; not all can afford to dig ditches and a pond or have the land to do so.  I hope I have helped some or maybe caused others to think in a direction they had not thought of.  My purpose is to give basics to those who are starting, maybe add some insight to those who have not been able to experience some of these skills, and caused the experienced to share their ideas or knowledge in comments of things they have actually tried or even heard of so the group gains the knowledge to try or research tricks or skill sets that will help them survive. Summary I have eaten ground hog, raccoon, snake, fish, alligator, squirrel, rabbit, beaver, muskrat, crawdad, crabs, lobster, wild boar, deer, moose, elk, bear and even a rat to cover most of my vittles in the past.  Those who hunt, try carrying your day-pack and other gear (where legal) while doing so. This will allow you to see how it affects your shooting and whether the game animal will be spooked by what you have.  Sound is your enemy, so tie everything down secure.   When squirrel hunting, I wear my MOLLE vest, carry my emergency survival gear and a sidearm (especially handy because of the feral dog problem). I hunt with either a 22 LR rifle (normal) or pellet gun.  This allows me to continually improve my ability to move quietly through the woods while wearing the extra gear I will have when the situation(s) we prep for become a reality.  Also, if you have them, take the kids; the younger the better.  They will learn to move quietly and be still, get satisfaction in knowing they helped “earn” their dinner and it creates a bond not easily broken.  If you find it difficult to be patient with them when only a successful hunt is on the line; how will you react when the very meal you MUST have is cost?  Each child is different and will handle the experience differently. You must decide when they are ready to see an animal harvested and then again when they are ready to witness the butchering process.  I prefer skinning and gutting my game in the field, innards stink when in your garbage at home, but in the survival situation, they become bait for traps or fishing.  Animal stomachs, turned inside out and washed very thoroughly, make excellent pouches and/or water bags.  Learn to skin the game as cleanly and whole as possible to save the pelt.  Rabbit fur is soft and works well for mittens, ear muffs, etc; ground hog hide is extremely tough and makes good leather lace. Stay Alert, Stay Alive Regulator5 Resources and recommended authors and sites: BOOKS: Mantrapping by Ragnar Benson Ragnar’s 10 Best Traps by Ragnar Benson Fox Trapping Methods – Russ Carman Trapping North American Furbearers – Stanley Hawbaker Completion Line Fox Trapping – Tom Miranda The Trapper’s Bible – Dale Martin Long Term Survival in the Coming Dark Age – James Ballou North America Plant Foraging Guide – Judy of the Woods Resources Cherokee By Blood (recipes) Website on making Pemmican Paladin Press – books on many topics Simple Green Living – website and store catering to self sufficiency and homesteading. Mother Earth News Hoosier Trapper Supply – trapping and hunting supplies Blue Ridge Outdoor Supply – trapping supplies F&T Trapping Supply – trapping supplies Mountain Man Trapping Supply -trapping supplies Cumberland’s Northwest trapper’s Supply – trapping supplies Sullivan’s Line – trapping supplies and forum Photos By: Shapiromatron Pete Van Vleet Dennoir Mike Jone$$$ Joel Abroad Creekwalk7 Niyachen BarJack The Knowles Gallery Jaymi Heimbuch Growinggardenstogether Jolly Mandolin Sergey Yeliseev Other interesting articles: Emmrod Fishing Pole Review for 2020: Survival Gear 5 Dollar Preps: Wine Cork Fishing Kit Survival Eating: Part 2 Survival Eating: Part 3

The 4 Best Scopes for AR 15 Hunting – AR15 Optic Reviews 2020 Photo by Daniel Rodriguez / CC BY The AR 15, the black rifle, ten years of ago would’ve been a foreign concept in the hunting world. These days, however, America’s most popular rifle is becoming more and more accepted in the field. An optic on a hunting weapon is just common sense, and a good optic on an AR can make you unstoppable. A good AR scope will be lightweight and relatively compact. The AR, after all, is a lightweight rifle, and an accessory shouldn’t weigh it down. An optic should also be clear and provide a sight picture that allows users to determine necessary environment information, like the wind moving grass. The optics should also allow match what the hunter is hunting, and what range they are hunting at. Here are the 4 best scopes for AR 15 hunting: Bushnell AR optics Drop Zone Bushnell Optics, Drop Zone BDC Reticle Riflescope with Target Turrets and Side Parallax, Matte Black, 3-9x/40mm Price: $114.99 Price as of 08/14/2020 03:02 PDT (more info) Product prices and availability are accurate as of the date/time indicated and are subject to change. Any price and availability information displayed on Amazon.com at the time of purchase will apply to the purchase of this product. The Bushnell AR optics Drop Zone rifle scope is specifically made for the AR 15 rifle and provides shooters with an excellent, affordable optic. The Bushnell AR comes with a 3 to 9 variable power magnification and a 40 mm objective lens. This magnification is more than suitable for most hunting environments and is perfect for the AR platforms medium range capabilities. The glass is fully multi coated and provides a crisp and clear sight picture of your target and the area surrounding it. The clear sight picture allows the hunter to see the small movements of grass and dust to aid in wind compensation. The optic features a side focus parallax adjustment for fast focusing on target and long range accuracy. The turrets are finger tip adjustable for easy and quick adjustments in the field. The Drop Zone features a ballistic bullet drop compensator specifically designed for rounds weigh between fifty-five and sixty-two grains, in both .223, and 5.56. The bullet drop compensator offers holdover points for out to 500 yards, which is right around the max an AR hunter can take humane killing shots from. With this scope, Bushnell continues its classic heritage as a hunter optic by stepping with the new generation into the AR platform. Bushnell AR Optics 3-9x40mm Scope Overview *New Model* Watch this video on YouTube

Top 4 Shoulder Holsters for Glocks [Buyers Guide + Best Choice]

LAST UPDATED: June 11th 2020 GUIDE: Chris Browning Glocks are great guns for hunters, law enforcement, those of you needing self-defense or even beginners. You’ll need a proper way to carry it though, leaving you with shoulder holsters or hip holsters. I found the shoulder holsters to be more useful for me, with the top pick being the Gould & Goodrich Gold Line Shoulder Holster . It’s made just for Glocks , so you can be sure it’ll fit whatever model you’ve got very securely, while saying comfortable on your body. @import url("//fonts.googleapis.com/css?family=Open+Sans:400,700&subset=latin");@import url("//fonts.googleapis.com/css?family=Lato:300,700,400&subset=latin");@media (min-width: 300px){[data-css="tve-u-45bd34974a1514"] { background-image: none !important; }[data-css="tve-u-05bd34974a141d"] { border: none; background-image: none !important; margin-bottom: 0px !important; margin-top: 0px !important; padding: 0px !important; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255) !important; }[data-css="tve-u-25bd34974a149a"] { background-image: none !important; background-color: rgb(242, 237, 237) !important; }[data-css="tve-u-95bd34974a1640"] { margin-top: -10px !important; background-image: none !important; padding-top: 0px !important; padding-bottom: 15px !important; }[data-css="tve-u-125bd34974a16fe"] { line-height: 1.1em !important; }:not(#tve) [data-css="tve-u-125bd34974a16fe"] { font-family: inherit !important; color: rgb(5, 5, 5) !important; font-size: 17px !important; }[data-css="tve-u-105bd34974a167c"] { line-height: 1em !important; }[data-css="tve-u-105bd34974a167c"] strong { font-weight: 700; }:not(#tve) [data-css="tve-u-105bd34974a167c"] { font-family: Lato; font-weight: 400; font-size: 25px !important; color: rgb(5, 5, 5) !important; }[data-css="tve-u-75bd34974a15c8"] { padding-top: 0px !important; background-image: none !important; padding-bottom: 5px !important; text-align: center; }[data-css="tve-u-115bd34974a16b9"] { padding: 0px 0px 20px !important; background-image: none !important; }[data-css="tve-u-35bd34974a14d8"] { max-width: 760px; min-height: 0px !important; }[data-css="tve-u-55bd34974a1550"] { margin-left: 0px; padding-top: 0px !important; padding-bottom: 0px !important; }[data-css="tve-u-55bd34974a1550"] > .tcb-flex-col { padding-left: 0px; }[data-css="tve-u-15bd34974a145e"] { border: none; border-radius: 5px; overflow: hidden; padding: 20px !important; margin-bottom: 20px !important; }[data-css="tve-u-85bd34974a1604"] { width: 85px; float: none; margin: 0px auto !important; }:not(#tve) [data-css="tve-u-145bd34974a1775"] { color: rgb(255, 255, 255) !important; font-size: 16px !important; font-family: "Open Sans" !important; letter-spacing: 1px; font-weight: 400 !important; }[data-css="tve-u-135bd34974a173a"] { overflow: hidden; max-width: 330px; float: none; width: 100%; background-color: rgb(241, 89, 42) !important; border-radius: 5px !important; padding-top: 5px !important; padding-bottom: 5px !important; margin-left: auto !important; margin-right: auto !important; z-index: 3; position: relative; }[data-css="tve-u-145bd34974a1775"] strong { font-weight: 700 !important; }[data-css="tve-u-125bd34974a16fe"] strong { font-weight: 700 !important; }[data-css="tve-u-15bd34974a145e"] .tve-page-section-in { display: block; }}@media (max-width: 767px){[data-css="tve-u-75bd34974a15c8"] { text-align: center; background-image: none !important; }:not(#tve) [data-css="tve-u-125bd34974a16fe"] { font-size: 22px !important; }[data-css="tve-u-05bd34974a141d"] { background-image: none !important; }[data-css="tve-u-25bd34974a149a"] { background-image: none !important; }:not(#tve) [data-css="tve-u-105bd34974a167c"] { font-size: 28px !important; }[data-css="tve-u-95bd34974a1640"] { background-image: none !important; padding-top: 10px !important; padding-bottom: 10px !important; }[data-css="tve-u-55bd34974a1550"] { padding-top: 0px !important; }[data-css="tve-u-45bd34974a1514"] { background-image: none !important; margin-bottom: 0px !important; }[data-css="tve-u-15bd34974a145e"] { padding-bottom: 20px !important; margin-bottom: 0px !important; padding-left: 10px !important; padding-right: 10px !important; }[data-css="tve-u-115bd34974a16b9"] { padding: 10px 0px !important; background-image: none !important; }} .tve-leads-conversion-object .thrv_heading h1,.tve-leads-conversion-object .thrv_heading h2,.tve-leads-conversion-object .thrv_heading h3{margin:0;padding:0}.tve-leads-conversion-object .thrv_text_element p,.tve-leads-conversion-object .thrv_text_element h1,.tve-leads-conversion-object .thrv_text_element h2,.tve-leads-conversion-object .thrv_text_element h3{margin:0} Get Deals on Guns and Tactical Gear Join 70,000 Readers For Our Weekly Discounts ​ GET MY DISCOUNTS Table of Contents 1 A Brief Guide To Shoulder Holsters 2 How To Wear A Shoulder Holster 3 Advantages of Shoulder Holsters 4 Best Shoulder Holsters for Glocks 5 Final Thoughts A Brief Guide To Shoulder Holsters Shoulder holsters are a popular carry method for handguns among police officers, active duty military and everyday citizens. They come in many different styles and types to fit your needs, but it’s not just their versatility that makes them popular. There are a few reasons why they’re so preferred, and why you see them on just about every police show on television. The most obvious reason is due to the concealment provided . You can draw the weapon without being too noticeable, so if there are any special conditions where you need to draw quickly, you’ll be able to. Shoulder holsters are also practical, since any wearer can keep it on even while sitting. This is different from the belt holster that may make it difficult to remove your weapon if you’re seated or crouching down. All you have to do is reach back and aim, making them perfect for any situation. How To Wear A Shoulder Holster People often have trouble making their shoulder holster feel comfortable, but this is mainly because it’s not adjusted or worn correctly. If you don’t want to compromise concealment or drawing speed, these steps will help you wear it right. Put the Glock in. Start by putting the magazines in the magazine carrier, if there is one, and move on to place your Glock gun in either side of the holster. Put on the Holster. Put on that holster so the Glock is under the opposite arm as your shooting hand. So if you’re left-handed , the Glock is on the right side. If you’ve got two guns, just put them both in there. Back Straps. Make sure the place where the straps cross in the back is centered high, right below your collar and a little above the shoulder blades. Any holsters with pads should have the pads near the neck, not by the shoulders. Adjust the Holster. The holster should hold your glock horizontally with the muzzle pointed behind you. The grip should stick out around 2 inches when your arm is straight. This will help you draw the Glock easier without showing an outline on your jacket. Magazine Carrier. Make sure the magazines are right under your shooting arm and that you can easily un-strap and remove them. It might be easier to grab them if they’re tipped forward slightly. Tie-Downs. Attach tie-downs to a belt to keep the holster snug against your sides. This is optional, but may feel more comfortable. Practice. Finally, practice with a jacket. Make sure you can draw your weapon smoothly and if you can’t, make a few more adjustments. Advantages of Shoulder Holsters There are many reasons to get yourself a shoulder holster when you’ve got a Glock, which I’ve listed here. Great for Glocks: Heavy handguns fit great, and the weight is more distributed than with a hip holster. Any gun can be carried even for days without discomfort. Long Barrels: If you’ve got long-barreled guns, shoulder holsters are your only real option for concealed carry . Shoulder holsters are great for concealment in general though. Perfect while sitting: Driving or sitting isn’t a problem when you need to hold onto your gun. If you’re working or crawling under things, it’ll stay on securely. Any movement at all is simplified with a shoulder holster. Movement: Even if you’re not crawling or moving under things, you’ll find that you can move around more easily. Your holster won’t get caught on anything and will lay flat against your body. This will keep it clean and less dusty too. Storage and Versatility: With a shoulder holster, you can keep the Glock and spare ammo close to you, which is ideal in an emergency situation. Regardless of what gun you have, you shouldn’t have any problem fitting in your holster. "Best Shoulder Holsters" for Glocks This shoulder holster is made from durable and rugged nylon, so it’s built to last. It’s black, waterproof, lightweight and perfectly sized for both your Glocks and magazine pouches. 1. Gould & Goodrich Gold "Line Shoulder Holster" This holster is made right in the USA with top grain vegetable tanned genuine leather. This holster adjusts fully for comfort with straps that lay flat, double ammunition , and non-glare leather. Pros Easily adjustable and made from quality materials Holster hugs your Glock perfectly to keep it snug and secure Holds your Glock and ammo securely with no slippage The wide front strap section distributes the weight more firmly than other kinds of holsters Very comfortable and easy to adjust and pull from a sitting position Cons You do need to buy the tie-down straps separately The leather straps are a little thin, and people question how long they will last The mag pouches are very solid and stiff, so you may need to adjust them a bit The barrel of the gun isn’t totally encased The leather is a little rougher than some buyers might light, and will take some time to break in 2. Under Control Tactical Shoulder Holster For Concealed Carry Pros It’s fully adjustable , with a clip behind the shoulder pads to balance the weight and keep the holster from shifting Includes impact resistant plastic sliders and a quick release buckle that tailor it to individuals Shoulders are padded for comfort, but not puffy Reinforced corners Very high attention to detail It’s a vertical carry and can carry even weapons with larger muzzles with ease The included Velcro clips attach easily to your belt Cons Not waterproof, although it is somewhat water resistant There aren’t included instructions on how to adjust the holster The double lock is a little bulky Some guns are too large to fit in the holster although it won’t happen with your Glock There isn’t a thumb break for one-handed retrieval of your gun 3. Federal Shoulder Holsters For Glocks Double Mag Pouch Horizontal Carry When you’re looking for comfort, the dual stay flat shoulder pads are sure to fit snugly. You can carry two magazines in the double magazine pouch , and the six way size adjustment is sure to fit anyone. Tie-down straps for your belt are even included. Pros No problems adjusting straps to various specifications Very comfortable; can be worn all day without any issues The holster is easy to unsnap when drawing your Glock Magazine pouches and the Glock are securely put in place Remains close to the body; fits snugly The price is very cost effective You can reach both the glock and magazines with ease, and the actual holster is light and comfortable Cons It is a little bulky when you actually wear it underneath a jacket Doesn’t seem to conceal as well if you have a more slender stature Takes time to break in and sit more comfortably The biggest consistent problem is with the quality more than anything else 4. Galco Jackass Rig Shoulder System For Glocks Right Hand Fit the Glock 17 or 31 in this Galco shoulder harness. It’s tested for durability and quality, with a horizontal holster that can be adjusted. You’ll get the harness, an ammo carrier and a set of screws too. Pros Very versatile with many adjustment possibilities and options, like having or not having a mag pouch, tie-downs, or higher or lower slung on your body The thumb break style makes sure it stays on securely You can conceal it in a wide variety of jackets or coats It’s very trim and not easily seen The angled holster makes it easy to conceal most glocks without them being obvious or getting in your way Cons It does take a good amount of time to set up properly The holster is very tight until it’s broken in properly You do need to stretch the straps yourself over time if you want it to fit more comfortably The double mag pouch does seem a little large Thin straps can make it uncomfortable to wear The pricing may be high for some buyers 5. Galco Shoulder Holster Miami Classic This classic Glock holster is perfect for any type of glock that you pick up. The materials are top quality , so you can be sure they’ll last a while too. The leather straps keep it snug on your body and keep your weapon perfectly concealed. Pros Doesn’t get in the way at all, and can be adjusted easily Holds Glocks easily with snugly fitting magazines Very high quality leather and comfortable to wear without any bulges Cons It does take some time to really break it in and make it comfortable to wear It can be difficult to fit your Glocks in there initially before it’s broken in Final Thoughts There are many reasons why you might want to purchase a great shoulder holster. Overall, the preferred choice seems to be the Gould & Goodrich Gold Line Shoulder Holster . Our Pick Best Shoulder Holster For Glock Gould & Goodrich Gold Line Shoulder Holster This holster is made right in the USA with top grain vegetable tanned genuine leather. This holster adjusts fully for comfort with straps that lay flat, double ammunition, and non-glare leather. Check Price It fits easily and doesn’t take as much time to break in as some other holsters, although all of these top picks are great options too. 3.3/5 (46 Reviews) LEAVE A REPLY Cancel reply

[Review] Sig Sauer P226: Super Solid

Trending: Best Places to Buy Ammo Online and [Buyer's Guide] 7 Best AR-15s World-renowned. Masterful. Premier. A force to be reckoned with. Those are just a few of the words and phrases SIG Sauer uses to describe their P226 line of pistols. Sounds impressive, right ? The SIG Sauer P226 Nitron is sort of the baseline P226 of the line-up but it’s a solid pistol you’d probably love shooting. Thanks to the SIG marketing team it certainly does..the P226 sounds almost like a pistol that loads itself, fires itself, and polices its own brass afterward. This leads us to wonder what the P226 is really like and whether it lives up to the hype. Sig Sauer P226 930 at Brownells Prices accurate at time of writing View Details 930 at Brownells Compare prices (3 found) Brownells (See Price) Guns.Com (See Price) GunBroker.Com (See Price) Prices accurate at time of writing Let’s find out! Table of Contents Loading... Brief History You should be able to predict by now that I’ll plunge headfirst into firearms history. In the case of the P226 you may already be familiar with its background but for the uninitiated, this might prove interesting. And as you may have guessed it involves the military (because what uber-popular handgun doesn’t?). Freedom Angel! Back in the 1970s the United States Air Force asked for better ammunition based on the belief changing to premium ammo would solve their handgun troubles. As governmental requests tend to go this resulted in an investigation which dug up the information that there were literally dozens of different handguns being used by the USAF alone. Dozens. USAF Pistols, circa 1970sish, probably A Congressman by the name of Addabbo made the statement that “the current proliferation of handguns and handgun ammunition in Air Force inventory is intolerable.” Guns in use by the military at large included the expected M1911A1 in .45 ACP and the Smith & Wesson M13 in .38 Special. Smith & Wesson M13 Aircrewman, a pre-Model 12 revolver designed as a super lightweight defensive revolver for aircrews! On the heels of this statement came the decision to find One Handgun to Rule Them All. At the time the US Military was the only major force that did not yet have a standardized NATO handgun and ammunition. You could say it needed to be fixed. The journey to find that one handgun launched the Joint Service Small Arms Program (JSSAP). In the words of the great Inigo Montoya, there is too much, I sum up. In typical military fashion, they came up with a rather exhaustive list of 85 requirements for the new handgun, 72 of which were mandatory. The mandatory stuff included a need for a magazine release that could be operated with one hand, a first-round trigger pull in double-action with follow-up shots being single-action, and a 9mm chambering. They also wanted it to be durable – no more than eight malfunctions allowed per 5,000 rounds fired – and a minimum capacity of 13 rounds. Quite a few big names threw their firearms hats into the ring for the first round including Beretta, FN, Steyr, Heckler and Koch, and Smith & Wesson. It wasn’t until round two that SIG Sauer got involved with their P226. They’d designed the P226 specifically for JSSAP and it performed well. By round three it was clear the SIG P226 was one of the best, holding its own alongside the Beretta 92FBS. It was during the end-of-trial bidding that SIG lost to Beretta so it seems safe to say SIG’s not being selected as the winner wasn’t about performance, it was about money. All was not lost, though. The US Navy SEALs decided to use the SIG P226 beginning in the 1980s, a move that would make the gun something of a legend. Sig Sauer Mk25, the pistol that the Navy SEALs adopted I mean, who doesn’t want a gun so tough, accurate, and reliable the SEAL teams guys rely on it in combat? Be honest. It kind of makes you want one. P226 Design Onward and upward. Or inward as the case may be. The P226 was originally made to fulfill those JSSAP requirements and hasn’t seen a lot of change since then. After all, if the SEALs, a bunch of federal agents, and LEOs from the Texas Rangers – among others – are happy with it, why mess with awesomeness? The P226 Nitron is the “older” and more original design. There are quite a few variants out there such as the extremely cool Legion P226 but if you want to stick to the gun’s roots, this is your model. My only real issue with the P226 Nitron is the trigger because it has noticeable take-up, some stacking, and a seriously long reset. Even so, it isn’t a bad trigger, just also not the best ever. The gun comes in a trio of calibers – 9mm, .357 SIG, and .40 S&W – but the 9mm is the classic and it’s the one I have. It’s a semi-auto, of course, with the DA/SA feature JSSAP required years ago. "The P226 Nitron" has a full-size, alloy frame with a hard-coat anodized finish and a stainless steel slide with a Nitron finish. This is a solid pistol and you feel that durability as soon as you pick the gun up. Features time. This gun has a 4.4-inch barrel, an overall length of 7.7 inches, overall height of 5.5 inches, and width of 1.5 inches. It weighs 34 ounces, empty, so you could say it is a sizeable gun not suitable for deep concealment but that isn’t what is was made for, anyway. A SIG accessory rail makes it easier to mount a laser or light to the underside of the frame and the grips can be changed out, if you want. The SIG accessory rail makes it so you can throw a light or laser on your P226 if you want one. Personally, I think the factory grips work just fine. The P226 Nitron also ships with SIGLITE Night Sights and has a fifteen-round capacity. Streamlight TLR-7 102 at Amazon Prices accurate at time of writing View Details 102 at Amazon Compare prices (2 found) Amazon (See Price) Optics Planet (See Price) Prices accurate at time of writing Since some of you are going to ask about safeties, here you go. The P226 Nitron has a series of safeties built into it including a firing pin safety block, a safety intercept notch, and a trigger bar disconnector. It also has a decocking lever. There is even a shroud of sorts protecting the firing pin from outside impacts. Suffice to say it does have plenty of safeties. SIG designed the P226 so the slide extends to shroud the firing pin, protecting it from outside impacts. It’s also made so the hammer is held away from the firing pin until the moment you pull the trigger. Pew Pew The first time I saw a P226 I wasn’t immediately drawn to it. It’s kind of a bulky, blocky pistol with what appears to be an unattractively designed grip. Here’s the thing: as soon as I picked it up, I understood some of the hype. The backstrap swell of the P226 Nitron and the rough grip texturing fit my hands as though they were made for them. Seriously, it fits me that well. Although my hands are relatively narrow they’re pretty long – my fingers are longer than those of a lot of guys I know – so bigger guns tend to be my preference. When I first saw the grips of the P226 I was skeptical but the moment I held it in my hand I knew I loved it. This one is no different. Not only does it fit me but the controls are within reach so I can manipulate them without radically adjusting my grip. The exception is the hammer, of course, which requires me to move my strong hand back and up in order to operate it. The hammer on the P226 Nitron is textured so you can get a good hold on it even if your hands are wet. I’ve run this gun in the rain and will attest to its hammer texturing and deep slide serrations being handy. Let’s jump right to the trigger. The P226 Nitron’s trigger is all right but not my favorite trigger ever (the SIG P226 Legion has a stellar trigger, see it in action in the video below!). It has a clean break but there is some take-up, a touch of stacking, and reset is rather long. That said, the double-action pull is consistent and single-action is beautifully crisp (except for that take-up frustration marring the experience a bit). Shooting double-action the P226 Nitron has a measured trigger pull weight of 8 pounds, 1 ounce and a single-action pull weight of just 3 pounds, 9 ounces. The gun has cycled reliably and eaten a somewhat ridiculous variety of ammunition from Inceptor 9mm 65 grain ARX to Federal Syntech 9mm 115 grain TSJ to Remington UMC 9mm 115 grain FMJs. Remington UMC 9mm Mega Pack 250-Rounds 55 at Lucky Gunner Prices accurate at time of writing View Details 55 at Lucky Gunner Prices accurate at time of writing And of course, I’ve thrown in Hornady Critical Defense 9mm 115 grain FTX and Winchester 9mm 115 grain JHPs. There’s more, but you get the idea. The P226 Nitron has run everything I’ve loaded it with to varying degrees of accuracy. Best 9mm Self-Defense (124 gr) Federal HST 9mm 124 gr 25.75 at Lucky Gunner Prices accurate at time of writing View Details 25.75 at Lucky Gunner Compare prices (2 found) Lucky Gunner (See Price) Brownells (See Price) Prices accurate at time of writing Firing from the bench at 25 yards the gun produces five-shot groups between two and three inches. I’ve spent some time running playing card drills with it, too, and haven’t gotten the precise little groups I’d hoped to see. At ten yards it does nail one-hole, five-shot groups with most ammunition. The bottom line is it isn’t a crazy precise gun but it is accurate. Part of the problem is probably the trigger but really there is nothing to complain about. This is a perfectly capable self-defense gun . Carry This isn’t a gun you’re likely to use for concealed carry. It isn’t that you can’t because you totally can – if I can conceal full-size guns, so can you – it’s just that it’s a sizeable pistol and there are easier to conceal guns out there. Safariland 7378 7TS ALS Concealment Holster 42 at Amazon Prices accurate at time of writing View Details 42 at Amazon Prices accurate at time of writing When it’s loaded to capacity at 15 +1 it weighs more than two and a half pounds so you do feel it on your belt. The width and shape of the slide make it slightly more difficult to conceal IWB but for me, it’s the grip swell that presents a challenge. Possible, just not easy. For that reason, I’d say this is more of an open-carry gun. Finally The SIG P226 Nitron is a nice pistol. Yes, I like it. I’m not a SIG fanboy/girl/creature so no, I do not love every SIG that comes along. This one I do like. If you want a full-size 9mm for open carry or range days this gun is a fantastic option. If you want one for concealed carry you can still consider it, just be aware it’ll take some effort and possible adjustments to your wardrobe. The P226 does seem to live up to the durability side of the hype. If you just want a good workhorse gun for the P226 Nitron; if you want a precise pistol, check out the P226 Legion ! "Sig Sauer P226" Legion Pretty much any gun you choose from the P226 line is good to go. Maybe buy more than one of them. Hey, you can never have too many guns. By the Numbers Reliability: 5/5 The P226 has proven itself as a reliable gun. It does need to stay lubed – when I’ve run it in the rain and dry it got a little fussy – but I’d still say it’s reliable. And considering the variety of ammo it’s eaten I’d say it is good to go with just about anything you throw at it. Ergonomics: 4/5 SIG did a nice job designing the grip to fill the palm of your hand. It fits naturally and improves your grip which, in turn, enhances accuracy. It’s designed for hard use and fulfills those parameters. Is it an aesthetically awesome gun? Not really, but I prefer function over form anyway. Accuracy: 4/5 It’s a relatively accurate gun but not super precise. You’re going to hit what you’re aiming at you just won’t get gorgeous groups consistently. Mec-Gar Sig Sauer P226 9mm 18-Round Magazine 26 at GunMag Warehouse Prices accurate at time of writing View Details 26 at GunMag Warehouse Prices accurate at time of writing Thing is, you don’t need a precise pistol for self-defense, you need an accurate, reliable gun you can run well. Get used to the trigger on this gun and learn to run it double-action, not only single-action, and you’ll find your shooting gets better. Customization: 3/5 You can swap out the grips and mount a light or laser to it. Technically you could also send the gun off to be Cerakoted, so that counts as customization. Beyond that I wouldn’t say these are extremely customizable guns. Value: 4/5 This is a well-made, solid pistol that’ll get the job done. Prices will vary, but used or new the P226 is a great buy. Overall: 4/5 Sig Sauer P226 930 at Brownells Prices accurate at time of writing View Details 930 at Brownells Compare prices (3 found) Brownells (See Price) Guns.Com (See Price) GunBroker.Com (See Price) Prices accurate at time of writing Parting Shots I’d trust it with both my life and my daughter’s life, so you could say I’d recommend it. If it is too big for you to conceal it’ll still make a great home defense gun. Just saying. What is your go-to full-size pistol? How do the designs of the 1970s stack up to today? Let us know in the comments! If you’re interested in more awesome pistols, take a look at the Best Handguns for Beginners ! Looking for a CCW? The Sig P365 might be the best one on the market! Sig Sauer P365

Summary

Trending: Best Places to Buy Ammo Online and [Buyer's Guide] 7 Best AR-15s I know what you’re thinking: “Ugh, another budget red dot?” Sure, these things are like flies in summer these days, but there is a good reason for that. We’ve finally entered an era where red dots can be cheap and good . Shocking, right? You skeptics can relax.