Gun Review: Smith & Wesson 647 Varminter

The Smith & Wesson 647 Varminter, shown without the included red dot sight or blade front sight.

I first laid eyes on this little/big gem while on a prairie dog hunt in the great state of Montana. It took just one shot at a distant prairie dog for me to know I had to get one in my hands. Big, heavy, long and beautiful, its performance on varmints was astounding. The Smith […]

Long Range Made Easy with Nikon’s ProStaff 5 Custom XR

This custom Nikon ProStaff XR Turret is set for 350 yards using my personal .257 Weatherby Magnum hand load. I haven't yet adjusted the parallax for the correct yardage.

Making long-range shots is part math, part skill, and part VooDoo. The math part is very predictable, and only somewhat complicated, thanks to the advent of ballistic software you can get online, in devices like Kestrel Weather Meters, and on smartphones. The software does the hard work and negates the need for you to whip […]

Review: Beretta 92 .22LR Practice Kit Conversion

Your gun, plus a new slide, barrel, and magazine, makes a great .22LR pistol.

Seriously? You’re reviewing a .22LR conversion kit? Are you guys nuts? Don’t you know .22LR ammo hasn’t been seen since 1967? Yeah, I know, .22LR ammo is harder to find than a Jenny Craig meal at Governor Chris Christie’s house. If you do find some, it costs something like $112.93 per round. Well, not really, […]

Gun Review: The FN-15 DMR Designated Marksman Rifle

The FN-15 DMR comes out of the box with a variety of features for longer range accurate shooting, like an 18-inch barrel.

Recently I got my hot little hands on one of the new FN America rifles for 2015. This one is the FN-15 DMR or Designated Marksman Rifle. It’s designed to shoot accurately. More specifically, it’s designed to shoot longer and heavier projectiles accurately. Does it? Let’s find out. What makes a DMR a DMR? If […]

Ammo Test: Barnes TAC-XP .45 ACP +P

As you can see, expansion was picture perfect, even when fired through four layers of fabric.

Barnes has offered pretty amazing projectiles to other ammunition manufacturers and reloaders for some time. More recently, they’ve launched their own line of loaded self-defense handgun ammunition. Available in .380 ACP, 9mm +P, .40 S&W, .45 ACP +P and .357 Magnum, we’re going to be trying out most of them over the next couple of […]

The Ultimate Hearing Protection Solution?

I recently tried these, and am now totally spoiled.

I’ve got a serious bug up my butt about hearing protection. Even now, in the year 2015, I go to my local outdoor shooting range and see people who are not wearing ear protection. Worse yet, I see people bring kids to this range, also without hearing protection. Rather than freak out and gripe at […]

Top 5 Short-range AR Optics

We're talking short range optics, but you can always add a magnifier.

What’s the “best” anyway? It all depends on the ranking criteria, right? Is the “best” car one that hits 60mph in 2.9 seconds or one that can tow the lower half of South Dakota to Manitoba? The same goes with optics, so as I own the ink until this article goes live and comments open, […]

Ammo Test: Sig Sauer’s Elite V-Crown 9mm Self Defense

These Sig Sauer V-Crown 9mm bullets expanded perfectly after passing through the four-layer FBI test fabric.

While the Sig ammo is a relative newcomer to the market, the people are not. I spent some time talking with Dan Powers, who runs the ammo show, and it’s clear that the folks behind Sig Sauer’s new ammunition division have been there and done that. Because every caliber, load and brand combination is different, […]

Gun Review: Savage M-11 Trophy Hunter XP Package Rifle

The Savage M-11 Trophy Hunter XP comes complete with Nikon 3-9x scope.

No matter how you look at it, hunting continues to make gains in participation rates, spending, and popularity. For example: Between the years of 2006 and 2011, hunting participation soared by nine percent. A big part of that boom was a burgeoning interest in hunting among females. In fact, female hunters were 25 percent more […]