Optics for Combat Rifles (updated)

Scope Expert

Scope Expert

Buying a scope for a hunting rifle is pretty straightforward: determine the terrain you will be hunting in, and the distance that you typically take your shot at, and buy a scope of suitable magnification.

Hunting prairie dogs across an uncluttered plain calls out for very high magnification.  Hunting whitetail in the Northeast probably means dense forest among the hills, and the shots that present themselves to a hunter will be much closer; less magnification is better for that.  Variable magnification scopes give hunters extra versatility, but even with modern technology there are real and practical limits to what a scope can do.  Shooting in low light (when hunting coyotes, for instance) calls out for an illuminated reticle, which is a more common feature in the last 10 years.

A scope for combat has different requirements, because there are so many different kinds of combat.

Connecticut-Legal AR-15

Sit & Spin, Malloy!

Sit & Spin, Malloy!

Well, the eagle has landed, folks.

The illogical and capricious nature of gun laws (I’m still waiting to hear what the problem with barrel shrouds is) renders them vulnerable to circumvention by engineering changes, or even cosmetic changes. Where there is a will, there is a way.

The development of bizarre AR-15 features like thumbhole stocks, fixed-magazines fed by stripper clips, bullet-buttons, single-shot operation, lever-action and pump action were driven by the need to circumvent specifically-worded gun laws.

In the wake of the SAFE Act in NY, Black Rain Ordnance created a snake-like stock to render their otherwise-stock AR15 NY-legal. Goofy-looking, but functional.

And now Ares Defense has redesigned the AR15 lower receiver to allow a traditional Monte Carlo stock to be attached (alas this particular shoulder thing will not go up), rendering the final product legal to own in CT without registering it as an assault weapon. They promised it back in April, but it is in stores right now.

Use Enough Glass – Selecting a Spotting Scope

Peeping Hipster

Peeping Hipster

If you are going to do any long-range hunting, or if you want to improve your marksmanship beyond 50 yards, you need a spotting scope. You can’t learn & grow your skills if you can’t see what your current performance is. Not knowing where your last bullet hit will hold back your development as a shooter. And running downrange to examine your target repeatedly is going to tire you out and piss off your fellow marksmen.

A binocular is fine out to 50 yards, but beyond that distance the lack of magnification is a problem.

And, no, the scope on your rifle is not “good enough”, even if it is a fancy German brand. It doesn’t have enough magnification, and you don’t want to get into the habit of aiming your gun at everything that you want a closer look at.

If you want to improve your skills with a long gun, and get your guns sighted in correctly, you need a spotting scope. In optics, you generally get the quality that you pay for. Below, I will address some of the considerations that you need to think about before choosing a spotting scope.

Cheap Guns

Skinflint

Skinflint

Kahr Arms has been pursuing a 2-tiered product strategy for a few years now. When they entered the market, they sold high-quality pistols at pricepoints higher than Glock.  They now sell a high-end version of a gun, as well as a low-end version.  The potential benefit is access to a category of customers that normally wouldn’t be considering your product.  The risk in such strategies is that you might negatively impact the sales of the high-end gun more than you gain from the sales of the low-end gun; and that you might dilute your brand’s perception.  The vendor must be careful in designing their product tiers to clearly differentiate the tiers for the customer.

 

Connecticut Sucks

Idiot-in-Chief

Idiot-in-Chief

I apologize for the sparse postings lately, but we have been extremely busy fighting the gun grabbers and making preparations for the worst-case scenario.  By now you have probably heard the news.  The worst-case scenario has come true.

In a knee-jerk response to Sandy Hook, Connecticut’s Democrat-controlled legislature passed a comprehensive array of vague, contradictory, unconstitutional and virtually unenforceable gun laws in the dead of night.  Somehow, these idiots think that they can register high-capacity magazines!

The police report on this incident has still not been released.

We still have not seen the autopsy or toxicology reports on the killer.

None of the proposals address mental health.

None of the proposals address school safety.

And the Asshole Governor rammed the law through the legislature under bogus emergency protocols, avoiding public debate and committee review of the law.  Someone must be pulling his strings, because Dan Malloy’s former secretary says that he was too stupid to turn on his own computer while mayor of Stamford.

The law took effect immediately, when it was signed by the Asshole Governor at 12:30 at night, but the specifics of the law were not spelled out for dealers or citizens to read.  Result: gun stores are sitting on unsaleable guns because this Frankenstein monster of gun laws neglected to exactly define what was and was not permissible under the law.  Ammunition manufacturers like Nutmeg Sporting Cartridge can no longer sell to police departments because police departments are not considered a FFL.

Lawsuits have been filed.  This will be fought.  Many CT-based gun companies are planning to relocate.

A new Mousetrap…but not neccesarily “Better”

Paging Rube Goldberg…

The front cover of Guns & Ammo this month has a weird-looking contraption from Sig called the “ACP” or Adaptive Carbine Platform.  There’s a video to watch at the link.

It seems to be a big aluminum housing that you attach your handgun to, making it into a PDW.  It is covered with Picatinny rails that you can attach scopes, lights, lasers to.  It has an attachment for an elastic sling on the back, and an operating handle to work the slide (which can be mounted on either side of the ACP).

There is a law-enforcement version with a wire shoulder stock on the back that would need to be registered as a short-barreled rifle if you want to own it.

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