Tom

About Tom McHale

Author. Columnist. Gun Crank. Literary Assault Dude. Court Jester.

Woox Thunderbird Throwing Axe

By |2023-01-09T00:41:57+00:00December 29th, 2022|

While you can use the Woox Thunderbird Throwing Axe for general “axe activity” like chopping and carving, as the name implies, it’s optimized for flight. The handle is smooth to allow a predictable and hang-up-free release. There’s no discernible palm knob at the base of the handle. On a utility axe, you’ll almost always have some handle mass (palm, swell or end knob) designed to prevent your hand from sliding off the end of the handle. For throwing, you want the Thunderbird to slide right through your fingers as you release each toss — hence no palm knob.

5-Point 1911 Safety Check: Is Your Gun Safe?

By |2022-12-27T10:30:13+00:00December 27th, 2022|

If I had to wager, I’d wager at least 10% of the 1911s I’ve worked on over the decades have had safety issues. Some were even new guns. If I just think about well-used 1911s, I’m betting the percentage is more like 15% or even 20% — especially gun show “parts” gun amateurs often assemble. Not long ago a friend brought me a foreign 1911 (an Argentinian “Sistema” Colt clone) saying it needed some work. No fooling.

Last Minute Gift Solutions

By |2023-01-09T00:42:24+00:00December 21st, 2022|

Happy (almost) holidays, everyone! If you're like me and find yourself still nailing down gifts at the very last minute, here's a list of things we like that you can still get in time for pre-Christmas delivery...

Top 10 Tips For Urban Survival

By |2023-01-09T00:42:41+00:00December 20th, 2022|

Some people are naturally observant. I’m not one of them. My wife can sprint through a crowded airport on a holiday weekend wearing noise-canceling headphones and then proceed to describe everyone there, who has middle seats on their next flight and which of their kids are taking violin lessons. On the other hand, I could trip over Jabba the Hut playing “I Am the Walrus” on a set of kettledrums and not notice. What’s the moral of the story? I have to work at situational awareness. No, I mean it. I deliberately have to “switch on” when I’m out and about or the world will pass me by while I remain blissfully unaware. As a result, I’ve had to learn and develop some techniques and hacks to help me spot potentially dangerous anomalies and lifesaving opportunities during my daily travels. Maybe some of these strategies will help you too.

The Ultimate Training Tool — Mantis X10

By |2023-01-09T00:42:58+00:00December 20th, 2022|

A few years ago, the engineers at Mantis launched a training tech revolution with their MantisX sensor. When paired with a companion smartphone application, the rail-mount device could show you exactly what’s happening when you break a shot. Motion sensors track the most minute movements of the gun, allowing you to see muzzle movement before, during and after the shot break. That’s impressive stuff, and it’s a great way to improve hold and trigger technique, especially since the system works with dry, live and airgun firing modes.

The Air-Powered Fun Zone

By |2023-01-09T00:43:18+00:00December 20th, 2022|

We can’t always get to the range to shoot our fire and brimstone guns, and frontyard ranges tend to upset the neighbors — at least some neighbors. That’s where Air Power saves the day. Modern air pistols and rifles are technological marvels and offer realistic and accurate performance. Better yet, they can be safe for backyard, garage, or even indoor — if your spouse isn’t home — use. Or better yet, get her involved in the shooting! Here’s a few “must haves” and “wish I had thems” to get you going.

1,2,3,4… I Declare a Gun Lube War

By |2023-01-23T20:52:07+00:00November 13th, 2022|

Like all those “Housewives of Toad Suck, Arkansas” reality TV shows, capitalism is subject to the immutable and universal laws of unintended consequences. Take the gun lube market, for instance. We all need it, and presumably, there’s always room for a better mouse grease trap. So, in theory, I have no real problem with the onslaught of miracle gun lube products. Entrepreneurs everywhere have figured out you can package stuff auto repair shops purchase by pallet-loads of 55-gallon drums into teeny, tiny, plastic bottles with eyedropper attachments and charge a per-ounce price equivalent to platinum, and, these days, gasoline. It is not unusual for a container small enough to legally carry on an airplane to cost $15, $25 or even $40. If a container won’t cause anxiety and suffering among TSA agents, it’s small indeed.

A Holster Full of Boom: Springfield Armory XD-M 10mm

By |2023-01-09T00:43:43+00:00November 13th, 2022|

Reports of the demise of the 10mm cartridge have been greatly exaggerated. If new gun launches are any indicator of consumer demand (they are), then the 10mm is alive and kicking; thank you very much.Anyway, the 10mm has been coming on strong this past year. Considered mortally wounded after law enforcement everywhere moved to the .40 S&W and assumed to be dead and recycled into Shake Weights when law enforcement everywhere moved to the 9mm, it seems to be still kicking. Apparently, it’s the Michael Myers of calibers.

Regulate This

By |2022-08-05T10:31:59+00:00August 5th, 2022|

Once again, the Second Amendment debate is front and center in the news. Whenever people violate the rules of human decency, exposing foundational flaws in our society even a turnip knows will never be fixed with some new law, people scream for action. “Just do something!”Predictably, the “do something” drumbeat points to proposed new gun laws and a challenge to the Second Amendment in principle. Then the pontificating begins (from those who’ve not read seven syllables of writings by our country’s founders) with, let’s say, creative and again predictable, hot takes.

Gunnysack: NOVX Ammo

By |2023-01-09T00:44:02+00:00July 30th, 2022|

And now for something a little different. NOVX Pentagon ammunition uses a patented two-piece stainless steel case instead of the de facto standard “brass.” Why? Weight is a factor. I weighed an empty case and came up with 32.8 grains. A comparable brass case is about 62. So, we’re talking a weight savings of nearly half. If you’re wondering, that works out to about 1 oz. per 15-round magazine. I did check case volume, too — it’s about the same.

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