Gun Review: The Fully Functional AR57

The AR57 Is An Excellent High-capacity Yet Affordable Alternative For Self-defense, Varmint Hunting

The AR57 (also known as the AR Five Seven) upper receiver for the AR-15 has two claims to fame: a 50-shot capacity and downward ejection for ambidextrous operation. Operating by simple blowback, this upper is available in 6-inch pistol and 16-inch rifle versions, with the latter being reviewed here.

Manufactured by the eponymous AR57 LLC, and chambered in 5.7x28mm, this upper is less powerful than the standard 5.56mm version, but it has certain tangible advantages, including reduced muzzle blast, a high practical rate of fire, nonexistent recoil, and the ability to use folding stocks. Since the buffer is located within the receiver, folding stocks may also be used for compact storage or carry.

To load, place the base plate of a standard FN P90 magazine into the recess on the front of the upper, then press the feed lip side down on the catch located above and slightly back of the bolt. To charge, pull on the right-side nonreciprocating handle and release. The right-side charging hand placement makes it accessible for operation by the strong hand. Since it only has to be operated once every 50 shots, the time penalty for moving the hand off the pistol grip isn’t too great.

Empties will eject downward through the nominal magazine well. Some people use a 20-round magazine body with the feed lips, spring and follower removed to act as a brass catcher.

The magazine has no provision for activating the bolt lock when empty, but the bolt can be locked open using the catch on the lower. The upper runs very cleanly and reliably, requiring no maintenance after the first 500 shots.

The AR57 comes with a medium fluted barrel, reasonable for a varmint rifle but excessive for a defensive carbine. Burning around six grains per shot, 5.7x28mm runs much cooler than 5.56mm, which burns four or more times as much. That yields much reduced muzzle blast and far greater heat endurance, of course at the cost of a roughly 40 percent slower bullet.

The baseplate of a standard FN P90 magazine fits snugly into the recess on the front of the upper.

The adequacy of 5.7x28mm for stopping human aggressors has been in dispute ever since its introduction. Some of the lighter bullets available for the caliber have traditionally been tipped or leadless hollow points prone to excessive fragmentation. Firing a 27-grain lead-free hollow point at a full, upright 12-ounce beverage can did not produce a complete penetration – an excellent result for a range or a small varmint round, but not a man-stopper.

With no protruding magazine, the AR57 allows shooters to get very low into a prone position.

Expanding ammunition with better penetration is also available from FN, along with nonfragmenting 40-grain FMJ American Eagle. Recently, RR Weapon Systems introduced two 37-grain all-copper loads, 37F (fragmenting) and 37X (expanding). In testing 37X, I found it much hotter than the alternatives and a very reliable terminal performer. The three-petal bullets expanded to fill 2/3-inch circumference and penetrated around 12 inches into gel. Velocity was around 2,680 feet per second with a standard deviation of under 10, so it was no surprise that it produced groups a touch under 2 inches. Other than handloads with 40-grain Vmax, all other ammunition grouped closer to 2.5 to 3 minutes of angle when fired using a 2.5x scope.

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The AR57 is an excellent choice for self-defense, especially for individuals of smaller stature.

The main limitation on the use of an AR57 for varmint control is the space available for optics. Because the magazine is lifted up for unloading, the potential length of the scope is sharply limited. I have been able to fit 2.5x or 4x prismatic scopes, but anything longer caused interference. Considering these sighting limitations, I would rate it as suitable for small rodents out to 100 yards.

Accuracy is a less important consideration for defensive use. Follow-up shots with the AR57 are limited only by the trigger finger dexterity, as it showed no muzzle rise at all. Up close, this platform would be better served with a red dot sight and a laser for rapid aiming. I’d like to see a defensive variant with a pencil-thin barrel and a more skeletonized forend developed alongside the current version.

Compared to the PS90, the AR57 is the heavier option, even when polymer lowers are used. It is also longer. But the advantages of an AR57 are numerous. Even a stock AR-15 has a better trigger than a PS90, and aftermarket options can enhance that difference a great deal. AR lowers allow adjustable length of pull, and AR ergonomics make more use of existing training, other than in the reloading process. The height of sights over bore is significantly less, making accurate hits easier.

This functional upper features several advantages, including reduced muzzle blast, a high practical rate of fire, and nonexistent recoil.

Compared to a 5.56 upper, the AR57 is simpler to clean, generates less felt recoil and much less muzzle blast. With no protruding magazine, it allows the shooter to get very low into a prone position. Two full 50-round P90 magazines weigh as little as one 5.56 30-rounder, so you can carry a lot of ammunition.

At $745 direct from the manufacturer or an authorized dealer, it is less expensive than a PS90 carbine (which lists at $1350), even after the cost of an AR-15 lower is added in. The 5.7x28mm ammunition costs about the same as 5.56x45mm, though the variety of available loads is definitely smaller.

The niche I see for AR57 – besides it being plain fun to shoot – is for self-defense by the same slightly built individuals who would have picked an M1 carbine in the past. It requires less upper body strength to use than most long guns, and gives 50 shots without reloading. A small teenager or a fragile senior can run it with ease, but the rest of us won’t need an excuse to enjoy using this upper.

Supppressed full-auto with Youtuber Military Outdoor Supply



Editor’s note: For more information about the AR57, visit

AK Style Bolt Action Rifle

not exactly for Deer Hunting

This handmade bolt action AK-47 looks to have originated from the Khyber Pass AK near Pakistan/Afghanistan.
The “Khyber Pass” AK47s rifles were built from scratch or from parts in the Pakistani armories of the Khyber Pass region, bordering Pakistan and Afghanistan. Your average KP AK47 is basically an AK47 chambered in 7.62X39 with a side-folding stock normally found on the AK-74 rifle.
According to Ian McCallom this bolt action AK may have been just a piece that was made for looks. More than likely just a trash can gun. Take a look.

The entire weapon is manufactured from scratch, not using scrounged parts. While the magazine looks like a Bren magazine (pattern after Bren light machine gun) and the bolt looks like a pattern 13/14 Enfield, both are actually handmade.
The “gas tube” is entirely decorative, and the “cleaning rod” is fake; both too short and too large in diameter to fit down the barrel.

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Technical Specs:
Caliber: 7 x 57 mm Mauser
Overall length: 933 mm (36.73 ”)
Barrel length: approx. 425 mm (16.73 “) inc. flash suppressor
Weight (with empty magazine): 3.71 kg (8.18 lbs)
Feed device: approx. 8-10 round detachable box magazine

Speculation has it this was destined for a decorative role on somebody’s wall, it probably was built as a real, firing weapon; at least in theory. As to its purpose, it has long been hypothesised that these relatively rare hybrid weapons are intended for grizzled tribal shooters who cut their teeth on older manually operated rifles, but appreciate the aesthetics of the Kalashnikov.
Again, this may have been just for decoration on your man cave wall to talk about. What do you think?, Would you buy one?

Sources: Ian McCallom, Forgotten Weapons, Armament Research Services

RIP: Jeff Quinn of GunBlast

The following is straight up from
Article by by Ben Philippi

It is with much sorrow that we say goodbye to Jeff Quinn of GunBlast, who passed away on July 27, 2020. He leaves behind a wonderful family who loved him dearly, as well as many friends.

Quinn was a “salt of the earth” kind of guy, a “gentle-soul” as his brother Boge put it. He loved God, family, and life. I think it’s safe to say that he lived his life the way he wanted, and enjoyed himself much of the time.

When he decided to pursue gun writing in 1999 as a hobby, few expected him to revolutionize the firearms industry — but that’s exactly what he did.

Tired of reading contrived gun reviews in his favorite gun mags, Quinn asked his more tech-savvy brother Boge, “If I could write about the gun, can you put it on the internet thing?” Boge agreed and Quinn got to work.

He started photographing and writing about guns in a comprehensive manner. “At first, we just reviewed guns that we already had,” said Boge who took Quinn’s data and entered it into his computer. They put it online on a website they called GunBlast. At the time, no one else was doing it, and the internet was still very young.

With their site up and running, they attended their first SHOT Show as GunBlast in the early 2000s. They visited manufacturers and asked if they could review their guns. “A couple of the gun companies would look at me like there was something wrong with me,” recalled Quinn.

Fortunately, a few companies saw the potential and started sending guns for review. Quinn’s personality and look resonated with the gun crowd. You knew right away that he absolutely loved guns and wanted to pass on this passion to the reader. As a result, GunBlast took off. The success called for another addition, by way of another Quinn brother, Greg, who joined the team to help with advertising sales. After nearly two decades, the GunBlast channel garnered more than 64 million views. What started as a hobby, became a full-time job.

On a personal note, Quinn was responsible for getting me even more hooked on guns in 2005 when I read his review of a big stainless steel Ruger revolver. I’m so grateful that I had the chance to visit with him a few times at his home in Dover, Tennessee, and to film a short documentary about the GunBlast brothers in 2018.
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Stoner 63: Navy SEAL’s long favored Gun

Have you heard of the Stoner 63 light machine gun?
The Stoner 63, is a 5.56×45mm NATO, modular weapon system, using a variety of modular components, it can be configured as a rifle, a carbine, a top-fed light machine gun, a belt-fed squad automatic weapon, or a vehicle mounted weapon.
Initially, the Stoner prototype was chambered in 7.62×51mm NATO, however, the design team focused on the 5.56 which was gaining mainstream military approval.

This Stoner was designed by Eugene Stoner in the early 1960s. Cadillac Gage was the primary manufacturer of the Stoner 63 during its history. The Stoner 63 saw very limited combat use by United States forces during the Vietnam War including the Marine Corps and the Navy Seals.

United States Navy SEALs pose for a photo somewhere in Vietnam, 1970. The SEAL in the center of the group is carrying a Stoner 63A1 Mk 23 Mod 0 Commando with a short 15.7 in (398.8 mm) barrel.

Want to know how good it was?
Ask any of the former Seal members from the Vietnam war and mid 70’s, they can attest it was the thing to have for a four man patrol.
The Navy SEALs preferred the modified version as a LMG (Light Machine Gun), honed to deadly efficiency in the jungle environment.
This baby can sing to a 700 rpm cyclic rate. The Stoner 63A (13 lbs) weighed much less than the M60 (23lbs), which required belts of ammunition to be slung over shoulders because it did not have a magazine.
This LMG shined at fighting through ambushes or breaking contact at close range.
Here’s an excerpt from a former SEAL who had served in Vietnam:(excerpts from
“He reflects:
“On my first tour as point-man I chose to use the car-15. After a big firefight I found that I didn’t like changing magazines so I decided to go with the Stoner 63.

It was a little heavier, but with the short barrel and the 150 round left hand feed drum, it was a great weapon. With the adjustable gas port you were able to tune it to shoot 900/1000/1100 rpm. The thing with the Stoner 63 was you had to keep it clean. Shooting 1100 rpm you created a lot of carbon. The Stoner was the weapon that made a seven man squad so bad ass, it gave us the ability to take on a much bigger group. Our squad of seven had four Stoners, two M-60 machine guns, and our RTO carried a car-15 with a 203 grenade launcher. You put this all together and you are putting out over 6000 rpm. That will put the fear of God in you. The saying was “Peace Through Fire Superiority”.

Reliability was a question mark when the Stoner first made its inception. But, the SEALS have made it very reliable for their usage.

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The Stoner was phased out by the 1980, the M249 SAW took its place. But this wasn’t military wide as many conventional units were still armed with the M-60 machine gun.

In this video, we’re fortunate enough to hear a Navy SEAL share his memories of the unique Stoner machine gun.
This 80’s video shared on Youtube tells us the historical role that the Stoner 63 played for the elite military unit and how adaptive it was on the battlefield.
The SEALs knew it was a bastard child that found its only home and legacy among the ‘Green Faces’ who carried it with pride against the VC’s during the Vietnam war.
Sources: Wikipedia,, Youtube

For Young Shooters

The five shot .32-caliber Colt Pocket Pistol Model 1849, is the smallest and lightest at 25 ounces perfect for the youthful novice, who might enjoy the Old West flavor.

Story and Photos by Frank Jardim

The first handgun I ever shot was a target .22LR S&W Model 17 revolver with a 6-inch barrel and those hefty checkered target grips. I was a skinny 12-year-old, and the gun was much too big for me. It was only a K-frame, but that thick-walled long barrel got it almost to 40 ounces and it was every bit of 11 inches long.
Though the recoil was negligible, it was a strenuous undertaking for me at that age to just hold it up, and it required both hands just to get a grip on those big stocks. I loved it, but it was hard to shoot well. Today, as a publicly professed grown-up, I find myself in the same position as those seasoned adult shooters who generously cultivated my youthful interests in firearms.
In doing so, I’ve experienced what must surely be the same anxieties they did with me. Even though a youngster may passionately want to shoot a handgun, I ask myself, “Is this kid physically big and strong enough to handle a pistol safely?” Most of what adults would consider medium-sized handguns are simply too big for youngsters with small hands and slim arms.
My solution was to find a handgun that was kid-sized. Those little .22 LR and .25 ACP pocket pistols are actually perfectly scaled for little hands, but I believe they are a poor choice because they require a really tight (vise-like) grip to shoot without jamming, the slides are hard to pull back because of the heavy blow back recoil springs, and the safety discipline of any autoloader requires the additional steps of removing the magazine and checking the chamber.
The aforementioned heavy recoil spring will probably make it impossible for a kid to pull back the slide and check the chamber. I know many full grown women who can’t. Therefore, in my opinion, autoloaders for kids are out.

THE REVOLVER LOOKED TO BE a better choice. Unfortunately, there aren’t as many small ones made anymore. You can still buy the J-framed S&W Kit guns in .22LR.
The current Model 317 has an aluminum frame and weighs less than 12 ounces. It will set you back about $700 new. Used Harrington & Richardson .22LR revolvers still show up, and they can often be had for less than $200 in nice shape. For youthful novices who you suspect might enjoy an Old West historical flavor to their shooting experience (just about all boys), replicas of the Colt’s Patent Firearms black powder, cap-and-ball, pocket revolvers are perfectly proportioned in grip size and weight.
The five shot .32-caliber Colt Pocket Pistol, commonly called the Model 1849, is the smallest and lightest at 9 inches long (with the usual 4-inch barrel) and 25 ounces. There are lighter versions of this pistol, but they sacrifice the integral loading lever to save weight, and that makes them just too awkward to load, even for adults.
This compact and mild recoiling pistol was so popular, Colt sold nearly 336,000 before production ceased in 1873. In my opinion, an even better cap and ball choice is the graceful Colt New Model Police Pocket Pistol of Navy Caliber or Model 1862 Pocket Police.
It is a five-shot .36-caliber, measuring 113/4 inches long (with the usual 61/2-inch barrel) and weighing only 261/2 ounces, 11/2 ounces more than the shorter Model 1849. This pistol resembles a miniature 1860 Army of Civil War fame, except that it also has a fluted cylinder to save weight.
The longer barrel and sight radius make it easier to shoot accurately, but the main advantage is the longer loading lever, of improved creeping design, makes it easier to load than the 1849. Though this pistol can be charged to pack quite a punch, reduced powder charges produce minimal recoil for comfortable shooting.

The author’s son
Franklin ready to
shoot cap and ball.
Reproductions of the 1849 and 1862 Colts have been in production by one Italian gun maker or another (and sometimes a few at once) for at least 20 years. New guns are available from several distributors at retail prices from $350 to $375.
Dixie Gun Works ( in Union City, Tennessee, currently has the exceptionally nice Uberti-made ( 1862 on sale for $325.
In many states, black powder firearms can be shipped directly to the buyer. If you live in one of these, online price-comparison shopping makes good sense. You don’t need a local FFL dealer and you don’t need to pay for a transfer on a pistol you order from out of state. Just find the best deal from a quality maker.
I’ve notice the online competition for new cap-and-ball revolver sales is so fierce, it’s hard to find a genuine bargain on a used pistol at a gun show.

MY NINE-YEAR-OLD SON and I spent a recent morning in the backyard exploring the merits of our Uberti reproduction 1862 Pocket Police. The revolver was beautifully made, with European walnut stocks, a color casehardened steel frame and brass backstrap.
He’s excited to try it, partly because he knows that it’s a man’s pistol, despite its small size. I’ve explained that Colt wanted a powerful handgun in a compact lightweight package for ease of carry and concealment, particularly for city police officers. In addition, the Model 1862 was the last of its kind. It was the final cap-and-ball pistol Colt produced before changing over to the manufacture of cartridge firearms after the Civil War.
Around 47,000 were made by 1872. It was so well balanced and easy to carry, many were used for protection well into the cartridge era and made their way with the wagon trains west to adventure.
A historic firearm, even a historic replica, has a romantic appeal that modern firearms can rarely approach, and I believe that adds to the quality of the shooting experience for youngsters. In the case of this little Colt and my son, there was definitely a Cowboys & Indians thing going on in his head.

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From a practical standpoint, firing a cap-and-ball pistol requires the shooter to develop discipline that will help him or her as they mature in the shooting sports. To make the guns shoot, there are, frankly, a lot of steps you need to go through, and in this case, that’s a good thing.
All the effort drives home the point that, in order for the pistol to function reliably and safely, every step must be completed correctly, and every technique executed consistently, while the shooter continuously observes its mechanical state. Because you basically hand-craft every shot, you become inclined to aim and shoot carefully to make each one of them count.

FOR THE UNINITIATED, HERE are the process details, to be executed while always keeping the barrel pointed in a safe direction. After taking the pistol from storage, you need to clear the nipples and chambers of oil that might contaminate the powder or caps before you load for the first time.
A pipe cleaner and cleaning patch works well. You can also fire off a cap from each nipple to burn it out, but this always seemed like a waste of caps to me. In preparation for loading, first position the hammer at half cock so the cylinder can be rotated. (Always check for loads or caps that still in the cylinder. Accidentally loading powder over a full chamber will make a mess.)
Don’t worry about overcharging the pistol. You can’t do that with FFFG black powder because the chamber capacity represents the maximum load. If my son double-charged a chamber, it would have just overflowed. No great danger, only wasted powder. I made him a special reduced charge powder measure with a 9mm cartridge case that threw 13.5 grains. The maximum load for this pistol is 20 grains.
To load the cylinder, charge the first empty chamber with FFFG black powder, drop a ball in the chamber mouth, and seat it firmly over the powder with the loading lever. Properly sized balls (.378 diameter) are slightly oversized, and a thin ring of lead will be shaved from them as they are seated, indicating a good seal.
I like Hornady swaged pure lead round balls because they are perfectly round and can thus be loaded any way. By contrast, cast round balls have a sprue that should always be oriented up during loading.

When all chambers are loaded with powder and ball, the pistol is turned on its left side, pointing downward, and a Remington No. 10 percussion cap gently but firmly seated on each nipple with your fingers. Small fingers are ideally suited for this (I always use my fingers rather than a capper, because I know I can’t accidentally detonate a cap with my thumbnail).
By the way, cap sizes vary from brand to brand and even within the same brand and type. Beware of caps that are too long or tight on the nipple because they often won’t seat fully, which can cause a misfire on the first try as the hammer drives then down.
After capping, Crisco is smeared into the front of each cylinder as extra insurance against the blast from the firing chamber flashing over and igniting the adjoining chambers in a chain fire. I’ve never seen it happen, and it shouldn’t with a properly sized bullet, but why take chances?
The Crisco also lubricates the gun and keeps the fouling soft. Once the revolver is loaded, the hammer should be set on one of the safety pins between chambers until ready to shoot. The firing ritual itself requires the pistol be pointed skyward while cocking to allow the blasted remains of the exploded percussion cap to fall free of the action.
If you don’t do this, they will eventually fall into the hammer channel and cause aggravating misfires, each one requiring a 30-second delay while you wait to determine if the misfire is actually a hang fire. This is where constant observation of the operation of the action pays off.
Paying attention to where those exploded caps are going, and that the unfired caps haven’t fallen off, will insure trouble-free shooting. As with all single-actions, the long hammer fall requires shooter follow through each time the trigger is pulled. Fortunately, this pistol had a simply beautiful, crisp, light trigger.

My son started with a two-hand hold and bullseye targets but quickly moved on to tin cans at fifty feet using one hand. Each round delivered a gratifying boom, some noticeable but manageable recoil, a small cloud of white smoke and, most of the time, a can dancing around and jumping in the air downrange. That’s his payoff for all that loading and shooting discipline: making the tin can dance, and a habit of safety that comes from honing his sense of firearms situational awareness.

This story was originally published in AmSJ July, 2017

Why Instructors Lie about Disarming Techniques

You’ve got a gun to your head. Your heart is racing. Everything hinges upon a single moment of action and reaction. Compliance is no guarantee of survival. You have a window, a moment in time, an instance to act…your confidence is shaky, you’ve entered paralysis by analysis a million thoughts go through your head. You’ve lost control.

In this demonstration, Ryan Hoover a Krav Maga instructor candidly explains the reason why there are endless disarming techniques. In short, its to sell more courses. More classes. More DVDs. Its meant to make you feel like a commando ninja without actually improving your chances at survival. This is the great deception in the world of disarming techniques.

Let’s be real. You do not have an eternity to come up with all the what ifs and have an answer to each and every one of them. This is the inherent problem with collecting techniques rather than skill building and focusing on acquiring time tested principles. Enjoy the video and please leave us a comment.

Good Disarm Principles are:

  • Redirect
  • Control
  • Counter Attack
  • Disarm

Video Transcription
How new Techniques Get You Killed

“How’s it going everybody? GN Here today and I am joined by Ryan Hoover. We just had a seminar here in Markev, and one of the stand-out lessons here that really spoke to me was the idea of having just one or two techniques for a wide variety of situations. So first, can you take us through the basics of disarming? There’s three or four compartmentalized concepts there, which are…”

Ryan: “Yeah, we’re gonna start coming from the front, right-hand gun center mass to the chest kinda, keep it relatively basic. So, the basic principles are, I need to redirect line of fire– I need to get that half an inch that’s the only real dangerous part off of my body. So I’m gonna do that two ways: I’m gonna physically move the gun, and then I’m gonna move me. So redirect. Control, I need to get a second hand on the gun, in this case. In some other positions, it may be the gun arm.”

“What does your hand being in that position do to the firearm?”

Ryan: “Yeah, it does a couple of things. One: it allows me to secure it. Two: in most semi-automatic weapons, if the first round goes off, it’s gonna render it kinda out-of-operation, so he’s gonna have to tap-rack to make it work again. But more importantly for this context, it makes it very difficult for Josh to pull this gun back.”

“Because that’s what he’s gonna do.”

Ryan: “Yeah, for sure. About right now he’s going ‘Aw shit!’ and that’s the moment in time that I need to capitalize on. So I get that second hand on, he’s holding the part of the gun that’s meant to be held. I’m not. So by getting that second hand on, it allows me to have real control. Next part is counter-attack. I need to hit him.”


Ryan: “So, as I’m getting that second hand on, here, I’m looking to counter. I’m fixing to kick straight up the middle. Finally, disarm, least important. I need to shut him down. I may kick him again, I may headbutt him or whatever. Line of fire should continue to move away from me, and come back to me. Here.”

“So that’s redirect, control, counter-attack, and take-away.”

Ryan: “Yep.”

“Let’s apply those four principles, let’s say if he’s got the gun to the back of your head…”

Ryan: “Yep. So it’s here. This is a really crappy place to find myself. So, redirection now, obviously no kinda hand defense, body defense, is gonna make much sense. If I try to redirect with my hands, this is very much in his line of sight. Remember, I’m not trying to beat the trigger pull, I’m trying to beat his reading my movement and then reacting to it. So if I make a big movement in here like this, he’s gonna see that, big time. So I may talk to the guy, I may try to figure out what he wants, because he wants something, he wants a wallet, he wants to move me from one place to another, he wants my truck, whatever. So from here, my redirection is I turn my head in. I get my head out of the line of fire as quickly as possible. I know, just like the other one, he’s gonna wanna pull that gun back, though, so I need to be there. I can’t stay in this place. So now, redirect, control becomes getting two-on-one here. You saw my counter-attack, right? Same knee at the same time, I wanna get outside here, and I look to make the takeaway. I chose to go inside of the elbows that time, I may go outside of the elbows, just based on totality of the circumstance. Maybe I’ve got some third parties next to me or whatever, maybe this is just the way that I looked, so the same thing I just go this way. I move my head, bring that knee in, punch over the top, break, take the gun.”

“Ok, so this is where– this is the part of the seminar– because you did the same concepts. Gun here, gun here, gun to the side, right? And then you said, ‘what if you can’t redirect to the left because you’ve got a loved one there, and you can’t redirect to the right, because there’s someone else there too’, and I thought you were gonna say ‘this is what you do, boom!’ like… but you’re not about having a billion techniques for a billion situations, because…?”

Ryan: “Yeah, it– look, let me borrow both of you guys for a second. If Josh is on one side, Amber’s on the other. So Paulo, you’re the badguy. You put the gun on me. So this is like, one of the most stressful situations I’m ever gonna find myself. If these are people that I love, and people that I care about, and whatever move I make is gonna put them in more danger, that’s gonna be really stressful. So do I now want another technique to have to remember under that kinda stress? No! So if this is what works for me alone, and maybe it’s what works if it’s on Amber and I can do this, then I don’t want another technique just because we’ve introduced a third person to it. So it’s perfectly normal, it’s perfectly natural, you put a gun on me, it’s ‘Ok, Ok bro, I’ll get you whatever you need, just, my wallet’s right here, let me get you my keys–‘ and now we’ve got this same thing. And all I did was change the environment. It’s, it’s– I don’t think anyone’s gonna think ‘oh man, I’ll get you whatever you need…’ now I’ve changed, I don’t have this huge long side anymore, I can redirect off my body, I don’t need a new technique. New techniques are great for selling seminars, selling DVDs, that kinda thing, having big fat curriculums. But I’m trying to make people safer, not sell a bunch of other stuff.”

“Awesome, so I just wanted to share that with you guys. For me, that was a really eye-opening concept in Ryan Hoover’s seminar today. I think he’s absolutely right, you know, I guess it’s fun, it’s kinda cool, it does sell more seminars and more DVDs, the more techniques that you have. But this is something different. Like, you’re changing the context of the situation to– it’s, I’m kinda speechless. So…”

Ryan: “I think we’re changing the way you think about it. Because everybody thinks ‘well we introduce a new problem, let’s come up with a new solution’, no! I don’t need a new solution! I can work within the framework that I already have if I start thinking that way.”

“Right, because if I wanted to shoot you, if my intention was just to shoot you, it would be from this far. It would be bangbangbangbangbang.”

Ryan: “Even if you walked up on me, we’re turned, you walk up, bang. Boom. Once the gun is up, if you want to shoot me, I’m shot. For this moment in time, you want something. And maybe I’ll give you that thing! I don’t know. If you wanna take one of my people with you, well that’s not gonna happen. We’re gonna fight. So context is always gonna dictate my response.”

“I like that. So we’ll end it with that. Context should dictate your response. I’m GN, Thank you guys for watching.”

Source: Ryan Hoover, Krav Maga

New Life for an Old Favorite

Decision to hold ‘old-style .22 match’ leads to an adventure in restoring legendary Stevens single-shot.


Among the guys I shoot with, there is an increasing interest in old or old-style .22 rifles. The guns we like the most are the old single-shots, such as those made by Stevens, Remington and several other makers. One friend of mine said he thought that the popularity of shooting .22s would rise in the near future, and our feelings and interests certainly follow what that friend had predicted.
The reason .22s are being focused on in this black powder column is simple: most .22 rimfires can be considered black powder cartridges. The .22 Short is our oldest self-contained metallic cartridge, appearing in the first Smith & Wesson revolver in 1857. The .22 Long followed within a few years, and in 1885, the greatest cartridge of them all was introduced: the .22 Long Rifle. Both the .22 Long and the .22 Long Rifle used 5 grains of black powder and the only real difference between those two cartridges is their bullet weight, usually 29 grains for the Long and 40 grains for the Long Rifle.
There are kits available for reloading .22 Long Rifle cases with black powder. I have not tried one of those yet, but now I’m thinking that I should. If I do get to use one of those reloading kits, a report is likely to follow.

Here’s the same rifle, restored and with the tang sight added.
WITHIN OUR SMALL clan of black powder cartridge shooters, one of the guys thought about putting on an “old-style .22 match.” We talked, and then set about putting such a match together. Our plans included two novelty paper targets (a “turkey” and a “beer can”) to be shot at from just 25 yards, shooting offhand. Five or 10 shots would be taken at each of those targets. Then we’d move to 50 yards for a bull’s-eye target, which would be shot at from the sitting position while using cross-sticks for muzzle support. The bull’s-eye target would absorb another 10 shots.
The paper targets would be followed by another 10 or 20 shots, taken offhand again, at various gongs and clangers for a plinking portion of this informal match. For our little band of shooters, this match would consume 40 to 50 rounds of .22 Long Rifle ammo and it shouldn’t take more time than just the morning. Shooters would be awarded with meat or other prizes, similar to what we give out as prizes in our more common black powder cartridge or muzzleloader matches.
At this point, the old-style .22 matches are still a subject of thought. Although we did have one match scheduled, it had to be cancelled because of the virus shutdown. We still hope to have it, perhaps later this year. That rescheduling simply gives us more time to iron out any details, in addition to getting some fine .22 rifles for shooting in the match. One rifle I had never owned is a Stevens Favorite, a .22 that I have admired for several years. Others in our group were buying used Favorites, mostly the Model 1915, and using them as-is or having the old guns restored. A restored Favorite seemed to me a perfect way of getting well-equipped for more good .22 shooting.

A left-side closeup view of the action.
THAT IDEA LED to my search for a used old Stevens Favorite Model 1915 and I found one for just over $200. A friend looked at it and, having a well-studied background in the details of Stevens Favorites, told me my gun is a “parts gun,” made up from parts on hand, which is just fine with me. This one has the part octagon barrel, which I do prefer. Other Favorites had either round or full octagon barrels. And on my gun, the outside of the barrel was in better shape than the bore. Actually, the bore of this old, well-used .22 wasn’t that bad, but the chamber area had some disturbing pits in it. When the gun was fired, those pits in the chamber made extraction of the fired case rather difficult.
The pitted chamber was quickly cured by simply relining the barrel. That was inexpensive and it gave me a Favorite with a brand-new bore. This old rifle was too far gone to be considered a collector’s item, so relining the bore was a completely positive move; it brought new life to the old gun and made it serviceable once more.
At least, it would be serviceable for younger eyes. The rear sight on the barrel was just a little too close to my eye for me to see it clearly. To fix that, a new Marble’s tang sight was ordered for the old Favorite from CPA Rifles ( Peep sights are my favorites and I’m quite happy that CPA Rifles had a sight in stock for this favorite to wear.

Stevens Favorites were take-downs; the longest part is the 22-inch barrel.
BUT BEFORE MOUNTING the Marble’s tang sight on the rifle, I boxed up the gun and sent it to C. Sharps Arms to have the barrel reblued and the action color casehardened. This rifle would have far more value to me as a shooter in restored condition than as a relic from the past that looked like it should have had better care. There was a little metal work that needed to be taken care of too and I knew my friends at C. Sharps Arms, particularly Pat Dulin, would see that things were done correctly. I gave Pat only general instructions of what I wanted done; how to do it and how well it could be done were up to him.
You might remember that C. Sharps Arms restored a Remington rolling block in .50-70 caliber for me. Actually, this .22 is the fifth rifle I’ve sent to the company for restoration, including three rolling blocks that I’ve rebuilt and sent to them for bluing and color casehardening. I’ve always been well pleased with their work. If you have any questions about restoring an old rifle, contact them at
One thing that was not discussed with Pat was how long the restoration of this .22 might take. So I was highly surprised when it came back to me after only two or three weeks! (We can’t count on that happening every time, due to their workload.) To me, this rifle looks fantastic and I do appreciate the work that was put into it. Also, that “little metal work” that I mentioned was fixed perfectly. (Some terrible engraving had to be removed.) Getting the gun back so soon was a very pleasant surprise.

THE NEXT THING to do was to shoot this new-looking rifle. That was done the next morning, and a box of CCI standard-velocity .22 Long Rifle ammo was taken along. Getting the tang sight adjusted for both windage (those Marble’s sights are windageadjustable) and elevation was no trouble, once I figured out which way to make the adjustments.
Then bullets from the little rifle just seemed to pour through the middle of the target. That’s the only paper target shot at with this rifle so far, but more will be coming. And there was no chance of going back home with any unfired cartridges.
All of the remaining ammo was fired at gongs and clangers from 25 to 100 yards, getting hits often enough to feel quite successful. Of course, I give all of the credit for those hits to the rifle. Now I call this rifle “My Favorite” and I can’t completely relate how pleased I am with this little gun. It certainly will see action when we get that old-style .22 match up and running.
In fact, this .22-caliber Stevens Favorite is giving me so much shooting pleasure that I don’t understand why I waited so long to get one.

Suppressed Revolver

Was the Preferred Weapon for the U.S. “Tunnel Rats” while Hunting the Việt Cộng

Since World War II, America’s elite forces have used quiet firearms for missions where it pays to be silent. Sound suppressors—commonly referred known as silencers—remain in service today. What many don’t know is that U.S. commandos once carried revolvers with special cartridges designed to muffle gunshots.

In the 1960s, the AAI Corporation developed the cartridges for the U.S. Army’s and Navy’s rifles, pistols and shotguns. The U.S. Army Special Forces and Rangers tested the unique ammunition in Vietnam.

While they offered many advantages, AAI’s products failed to win any widespread acceptance in the halls of the Pentagon. The rounds were expensive and ineffective at moderate ranges.

According to a 1968 Army report on silencers, “Throughout the history of firearms, gun noise has been of considerable concern to the military.” “To the enemy, gun noise reveals presence and, often, the location of the shooter, thus resulting in a counter attack.”

To better understand how a suppressor works. In most modern firearms, the sound of the gunshot comes primarily from bottled-up gases escaping as the bullet leaves the barrel—like uncorking a bottle of champagne. A sound suppressor helps muffle the bang by trapping these fumes.

But even with these devices, the gunshot is never entirely undetectable.

In the early 1960s, Army weapon designers looked at alternatives that would completely eliminate the sound of the propellant exploding. They came up with the so-called “piston cartridges”.

How this special cartridge works
A normal cartridge contains a casing—which contains gunpowder—and a bullet wedged into an opening at the top. When the propellant detonates, the bullet explosively detaches from the casing, and goes flying through the barrel toward its target.

In a piston cartridge, the case is completely sealed. A plunger transfers the force of the explosion to the slug—like the cue ball striking another in a game of pool.

A gun shooting these types of rounds produces no muzzle flash or smoke, either.

By 1962, the Army had piston rounds available for .30-caliber rifles and .38-caliber revolvers. The ground combat branch’s Special Forces sections also planned to develop a new weapon to go along with the ammunition.

This special firearm was envisioned to provide “escape detection, terrorize the enemy, taking out enemy patrol, snipers, sabotage, reconnaissance and assassination,” according to a report from the Army’s Chief of Ordnance.

The weapon designers also felt this firearm could silently take out sensitive vehicles and gear like aircraft, missiles, radar dishes and electronics.

Above is the artists conception of this relatively crude hand cannon that looks equal parts revolver and submachine gun. The concept features a folding butt-stock and simple iron sights.

Commandos could use the special firearms to “eliminate sentries, guards, guard dogs, military and civilian personnel and collaborators,” the technical document suggests.

With all the speculation, in the end, this new revolver was used in the tunnels during the Vietnam war to hunt for the Việt Cộngs.

The Việt Cộng dug elaborate subterranean networks to hide guerrilla fighters and supplies from American firepower.
Soldiers who volunteered to scour these amazingly complex tunnels couldn’t carry full-size M-16 rifles with them through the narrow entry points. M-1911 pistols were their only means of defense.

However, the tight passages amplified the sound of gunshots. These U.S. “tunnel rats” could quickly go deaf from firing their pistols at enemy fighters.

To try and save the soldiers’ ears, Army commanders scrounged up silenced .22-caliber handguns. The Limited War Laboratory at Aberdeen Proving Ground in Maryland also sent suppressed .38 caliber revolvers—but without any special piston rounds.

This gave the AAI Corporation a chance to to build a dedicated “tunnel weapon.”

Bulk Ammo In-Stock

As it turns out, the AAI’s modified gun came in as a .44 and .38-caliber Smith and Wesson revolver. The weapon fired piston cartridges loaded with 15 steel pellets, making it a miniature shotgun. The Army quickly sent 10 of the unique revolvers and almost 1,000 rounds of ammunition to South Vietnam for testing.

While intended for tunnel-scouting soldiers, the 23rd and 25th Infantry Divisions both handed the weapons over to their Ranger units. Special Forces soldiers reportedly got some of the guns, as well.

Units using it had successes as reported by the U.S. Army, “The tunnel weapon was found to be ideally suited for ambushes.” As originally expected, the elite troops used their silent guns on various occasions to ambush and kill enemy officers.

At the same time, AAI was offering similar ammunition to the Navy SEALs. The sailing branch purchased a stock of silent full-size, 12-gauge shells for their own experiments.

“The only sound heard when firing the silent shotgun shell was the click of the shotgun’s firing pin,” writes noted SEAL historian Kevin Dockery in Special Warfare Special Weapons. “Though the … shell was not completely silent, it made a weapon firing it very hard to hear and effectively unnoticeable.”

But the ammunition had serious restrictions. Silencers can slow bullets to varying degrees, piston cartridges launch their projectiles at even lower velocities.

How slow? AAI’s tunnel weapon—eventually renamed the Special Purpose Quiet Revolver—was useless at distances greater than 25 feet.

“There were several occasions in which the tunnel weapon failed to incapacitate an enemy soldier after he was hit from 10 feet away,” Army evaluators reported.

“Another instances, the first round struck a large leather pocketbook, filled with papers, that was being carried across the officer’s chest,” the shooter reported. “The second round struck his stomach, knocked him over, but failed to kill him.”

The other problem with the rounds was that it was expensive to make.

“The high cost was not considered balanced by the usefulness of the round as other suppressed weapons were becoming available, and the project was shelved,” Dockery stated.
The Navy didn’t buy any more rounds from AAI, either. In 1973, the Army followed suit and canned their revolver program. “No further development was planned,” progress reports from Aberdeen declare. “Several weapons and some ammunition will be available … if a special need arises.”

Today, American commandos regularly use more technologically advanced suppressed guns, but don’t have a pressing need for the complicated piston cartridges.

Photos from, Pinterest, U.S. Army, Wikipedia
Sources: Joseph Trevithick , SEAL historian Kevin Dockery,, War is Boring

Knife vs Gun

Lets Revisit the 21 Foot Rule Concept
The 21 foot rule drill is well known within the law enforcement and personal defense circle. This defensive drill was patterned after a Salt Lake City Police Sergeant Dennis Tueller experimentation.

The Tueller drill is all about “reactionary gap” through training. Other trainers have come up with the distances associated it to the Tueller drill. This experimentation, determined that the average healthy adult male can cover a distance of seven yards (21 feet) in about 1.5 seconds.

The significance of the time factor is based on the reasonable standard that a person who’s trained in proper pistolcraft (gun fighting) should be able to draw a handgun and place two centered hits on a life-size silhouette at seven yards in about 1.5 seconds.
Its important to point out that both the distance of 21 feet and the time factor as addressed in Tueller’s drill, were both approximations based on training experience is all.

Bulk Ammo In-Stock

Training Scar
According to Force Science Research Center the old way of training was to stop the scenario when the defender gets off the first shot at the perpetrator. This type of training and mentality of “bang you’re dead” leads to a false sense of safety, this is a “training scar“. A training scar is a negative trait that’s come as a result of bad training practices. See video below.

Another training scar that is common in shooting is how we are all conditioned to stand on the firing line and shoot at a static target. For this reason, most Law Enforcement Officers and civilian gun owners step in concrete the minute their gun leaves the holster.

Safety was the primary motive to reinforce training with firearm. If there were any movement implemented into the training. It was limited to movements to perpendicular or lateral movements in relations to the target.

Alternative Solutions
Force Science Research Center provides an alternative way is to turn the “Tueller concept” into an actual drill as a force on force exercise. Basically, the drill extends to another 10-15 seconds, rather than stopping on the first bang you’re dead. We have to get rid of the “Bang! You’re dead” mentality. This gives the participants a chance to utilize any tactics (techniques) to survive.

Armed with this method, put in the flight time, re-create the environment settings. In the long run, participants can better prepare themselves when faced with similar situation as the Tueller drill depicted.

The takeaways will be from the experience that you gain while training. The neutralizer will be distance and mobility are your biggest allies.
You may need to get back to the basics and re-learn to run, get off the X-mark quickly.

Other consideration, training partners that you train with all moves differently. So it would be nice to have the sherman tanks and the speedy agile person coming at you. Their speed and aggression will dictate how you will handle the melee. In the end, there is no magic bullet, just train, train, in order to fill in those real life survival gaps.
Here’s some thoughts from Brian Pincus of Personal Defense Network addressing the issue of don’t just think of practice deliberate steps then shoot.
Because in real life it doesn’t work that way. Your adrenalin is kicking in and you’re moving at a hundred miles within a half a second. You gotta..
Put in those stress and shoot while getting off the mark. (Get to the meat at 9:50 below)

Without all the defensive buzzwords from Brian, its about:

  • Get the hell off line
  • Draw your weapon (you’ll be holding the pistol one handed)
  • Side step either to the right or leftFire a couple of quick shots as you move laterally

Yeh, thats right you’ll be practicing a Gang Banger one handed style of shooting.

Here’s another tactic that you can use and that is your legs and then the gun. So if you have fast feet or better get fit into the mode. Evade by running and using the environment (car in this scenario) as a shield then draw your gun.

How do you train for this type of defense? Or how would you re-wire your training? Here’s another quick drill that was captured by Gn_Funkertactical that can be expanded to 20 seconds. Go to 5:10 in the video below.

If you like to see some of the best knives for personal defense, you check it out here from Reviews Insider.

Sources: Force Science Research Center,, Photos by Bill Bahmer, Chad McBroom, Full Assault Tactical Youtube, Brian Pincus Personal Defense Network, Best Defense, Michael Janich, Gn_FunkerTactical

Hunting Rifles for Any Game

Are you into hunting and like going after both the big game and small ones with one or two guns?
If you’re the practical hunter that would rather spend time on hunting time vs buying a new hunting gun. Have a look at this list.
With the following list you can practically hunt any animal in the world.
This ranges from squirrel to elephants.
One thing to note about the following list.
This list is not the ultimate hunting rifle list.
There will be rifles that wasn’t mentioned or the one that you’re using. By all means let us know below in the comment section.
Another thing is that these rifles are not your specialist type of rifle, they’re just adaptable.

Without further adieu we give you four hunting rifles that can take down any game.

  • Remington Model 870 12-Gauge Shotgun

    Not only is this the iconic home-defense shotgun, but with its 3-inch chamber is also a perfect shotgun for hunting as well.
    With its interchangeable choke tubes, you can hunt all different type of birds: doves, quail, grouse, pheasants, duck, turkey, etc.
    For the bigger game which requires buckshots you can go after deer and feral hogs at close range.
    Want to reach game farther out in distances, just change out the barrel and put in a rifled barrel with sights.

  • Ruger 10/22 Rifle

    Because its small, lightweight but very reliable, the 10/22 is perfect for smaller game and varmint.
    Going with a .22 LR ammo is the least expensive from the bunch.
    If you’re looking to keep things quiet on your property while hunting, look into getting subsonic rounds.
    There is a time and place to have .22 caliber shotgun shells, its for situation where you don’t need to lug out the full shotgun.
  • Remington Model 700 in .30-06 Springfield

    This Remington Model 700 is one of the most affordable on the market for a good quality long range hunting rifle.
    With the caliber .30-06 you can take down any big game in the world.
    At the basic level, the 700 shines in the category of accuracy, reliable and easy to use.
    With this caliber most are within 150-180 grain, but you can find them in 110 to the heavy 220-grain for taking down real big game.

  • CZ-550 American Safari Magnum in .375 H&H Magnum

    Theres big game and theres dangerous game like brown bears, elephants and cape buffalo. You should go with the .375 H&H Magnum it is a little more powerful than the .30-06.
    Many seasoned hunters recommends this bad boy if you’re headed into Africa.

What do you think about the choices and what hunting rifle serves you?