My New M4 Profile Barrel

 

m4

I decided that I’d had enough. I wasn’t satisfied with the barrel on my AR-15. I thought I could live with the police-style barrel with the mid length gas tube that came with the rifle. It was very accurate because of the thick metal walls (like a bull barrel), and there was very little recoil. But after a lot of time holding it out away from my body, I realized, it was way too heavy. My back muscles were aching.

The picture below shows why. The top pic is my old barrel. With the hand guard removed you can see that the metal actually widens as it goes back from the flash suppressor to the chamber area.

m4The bottom picture is my new M4 profile barrel. Compared to the old one, the new barrel has a lot of diameter cut out along the way. This not only allows for a grenade launcher (if I so choose), but also cuts down on weight. In addition it’s a carbine length gas system. This puts the minimal weight of the A-post closer to the center of the rifle, again causing it to feel lighter and more balanced.

This change came about when I talked to my “supplier” and we came up with a deal. It was pretty much an even swap. I gave him my heavy barrel (with upper and bolt carrier assembly) so he could set it up on something a little more sniper-ish with a scope. I took his M4 barrel, upper and bolt to make my rig lighter. The results: Love it. I couldn’t be more happy with the feel and balance. No more over-travel. It feels much more balanced in my hands.

The new barrel on the M4 is melonite (instead of chrome). I don’t have much experience with that, so we’ll have to see how it does down the road. I’m probably going to change out the hand guard to match with the other OD Magpul furniture, but the CAR hand guard will work for now. Next, we’ll see how she shoots.

Support Our Police

V3.10000

If you’ve been paying attention to the news lately, you know that our police officers are under fire in America. A message has been pushed by those with an agenda. This agenda says that the majority of law enforcement officers are abusive to minorities. The truth is only a tiny sliver of the police in our country are bad apples.

The majority of Americans are good honest people. Because of this, we recognize that the super majority of all police are good, honest people as well.   They are the men and women who make up the thin blue line that protects us from anarchy. Each of them sacrifice time with their families and risk their lives every day to keep us safe.

I’m beginning to hear that LEO’s are starting to feel unsupported. We can’t have that. Our police officers have to know that we have their backs.

It’s time we show our support.  There are many ways we can express our appreciation and support for our local law enforcement. I chose to go the personal route.

Today, at my local supermarket, an officer was sitting in his cruiser keeping the area secure. Because I know the police are trained to keep their guard up, I didn’t want to spook him, so I approached slowly. I stayed in his field of view, made eye contact, and waved (keeping both hands in view). He lowered his window. I kept a respectful and safe distance.

When he asked how I was doing, I simply told him how much I appreciated his service. I communicated that in light of what is happening in the news, I supported him.

The officer was very appreciative and friendly and we talked for a couple minutes about the headlines. Then I went shopping.

That’s all it takes. Anyone can do it. Just don’t freak out the officer by sprinting to his cruiser and screaming your appreciation.

This Would Have Been a Bullet Hole: Why Talk Doesn’t Work

airsoft injury

Ok, so this one goes back to my first CCW class. We were working through airsoft scenario training, which I highly recommend. Each scenario was different. The good guy was told to go into another room while the rest of the class set up the situation in the “live fire” area.

One of the most important rules for the scenarios is that the bad guy couldn’t shoot the good guy until they see (said good guy) pull their gun. Hope that makes sense.

I was the concealed carry person, and didn’t know who the bad guy or guys were. I didn’t know what I was walking into until the instructor gave a brief description and then told us to “go”.

This particular situation was outside around 2 picnic tables. I was told to sit down at one table, and 3 others were sitting at the other table. There were also about 5 people milling around, talking in front of me about 20 feet away. The instructor told me that I was at a college campus, studying, and…. “Scenario on.” Ok, here we go.

While I was “studying” at the picnic table, quite alertly I might add, two of the people that were standing got into a fight. People were yelling, but no immediate threat of serious injury or death, so I played it cool, and just continued to sit there.

Then one of the guys at the other picnic table pulled a gun, and started yelling, and pointed his gun at the two who were fighting. BINGO.

Instead of immediately pulling my concealed weapon (and triggering a shootout), I stood up and quickly positioned myself 6 feet directly behind the shooter then pulled my gun and aimed it at his back. I had him, at point blank range.

But here is where I made a DEADLY mistake. I must have seen too many cop shows, or something. I yelled, “Put the gun down!” It may seem like I did the civilized thing, but what happened after that shows that it was just stupid.

What I didn’t know was the instructor told the bad guy not to let me take his gun. When I told him to “put the gun down”, he simply froze, gun in his raised hands. After I repeated the command four or five times, he sat down at the table and laid the gun down right beside him. inches from his raised hand. Now what do I do? Everyone in the class was watching, and my coolness factor was evaporating by the second.

I told him to move away from the gun (several times), and he did not budge. Shooting a man in the back with no weapon in his hand didn’t seem completely justified, so I decided I would have to move to take the gun. DOUBLY DEADLY mistake.

I moved from my perfectly advantageous spot behind the bad guy to his right (shooter side) toward the gun. Lunged in to swat the gun away, and……. No brainer here. He quickly reached for the gun. I fired, he fired, we were both dead. Plus, at 3 feet away, airsoft BB’s cut skin (see the above picture). That would have been a bullet hole.

I learned a lot from that scenario. With the man pointing a gun at other people, It would have been legally justifiable for me to fire right into the kill zone painted on his back. I had the advantage of surprise. There was no need to speak a word.

Instead, I tried to be the big hero. Attempting to disarm the suspect got me killed. That opponent (who already had his weapon out) changed the outcome in a split second by simply picking up his gun and blasting away. Never again. There is a reason why we carry concealed. Don’t break cover until you are legally justified, and ready to pull the trigger to kill.

Surprise: What I Found When I Came Home

 

glock on the deskI came home at around 10:00pm. My Daughter was in bed, my wife was working at her computer, and this is what I see. My Glock 22 in the Serpa holster, sitting on the desk beside her.

My immediate question to her is “Ummm………everything OK?”. She responded that she had heard some noises outside and wanted to have protection beside her just in case.

That’s my girl. I taught her that, and feel a little pride.

I also like the Serpa holster for this role, no accidental touch of the trigger (the gun is hot). It’s safe, but ready to go.

It’s reassuring that if there really was a dangerous problem, she at least has a fighting chance. With a full sized .40 cal., maybe a little more.

Zeroing in the AR-15 & Learning About the Sights

first bullseye

So I bought the new Del-ton AR-15 and a Magpul rear flip sight. It was time to sight it in.

Since I didn’t have any experience in this particular area, I expected the proceedure to be similar to checking the sights on my pistol. That my friends, was not correct. Although it was fun to get educated, it wasn’t automatic.

I was shooting American Eagle ballistic tipped 50 grain varmint .233 rounds. They fly at around 3350 feet per second. I would like to say that there was some scientific process to the purchase of the ammo, but they were simply the right price, at $8 for 20 rounds.

The first group of shots I took was from 20 feet (see picture above). There were four holes grouped together 3 inches directly below the bullseye. At that point, I was thinking that something is wrong with the sights.

I then backed up to 50 feet. Right on the money. One was directly on the bullseye! Little proud of that one. So then I was wondering, “What happened on the previous distance?”.

Next was at 125 feet. Again I was consistent, and above the bullseye about 3 1/2 inches (and about 1 1/2 inches to the left). Then it began to dawn on me as I saw the pattern play out. At least in terms of elevation, the sight was crossing with the line of the barrel at around 50 feet.

I almost started messing with elevation on the front post, but decided to talk to someone who knew what they were doing first. My FFL Dealer (former military and current law enforcement trainer) soon told me that everything was perfect. That’s how the platform was designed.

The bullet is supposed to cross zero at 50 feet. Before that will be low, past that will be high until gravity pulls it back down to earth. The projectile reaches the top of the arc at 100 yards and then comes back to zero at about 225 yards.

Makes sense when you think about it. Let’s face it, the amount that I would be off at the point blank range of 20 feet (for instance) would not make much difference if I’m aiming at center mass. The elevation differences at varying distances (even out past 50 feet) are negligible for the intended purpose.

Hope this helps. It taught me a thing or two.