Gunner’s Journal

The 1911 Worlds Finest Handgun!

Archive for September, 2011

Great Deal From Daniel Defense for Police Officers!

Posted by Gunner on September 30, 2011

Financing your new rifle: A great program for cops
Under a new program Daniel Defense just launched for law enforcement, police officers (and agencies) can obtain a top-quality patrol rifle with no-interest financing for a year

While attending the National Tactical Officers’ Association annual meeting in Richmond (Va.) earlier this month, I spent some time with the Brent Slaughter from Daniel Defense talking about their latest news. While I had expected to be impressed with the rifles they had on display, I was ill-prepared for just how interesting the “paperwork” side of their news would be. Suffice it to say, with a new program the company just launched for law enforcement, police officers (and agencies) can obtain a top-quality patrol rifle with no-interest financing for a year.

Before we get into the stuff on financing (yeah, I know, “But Doug, I LOVE talking about financing!”), let’s just take a few moments to appreciate these systems. Under their recently announced financing offer, you can choose from four different packages (including the sling, optics, extra magazines, and other accessories you’d need) exactly the system that best suits your particular need. In essence, you can take the system right out of the box and be patrol-ready (assuming you’ve already done the necessary training to properly handle the weapon in a tactical environment).

While we’re on the subject of training, it should be noted that the company offers a variety of training programs that can get officers up to speed on the system (they even have a comprehensive armorer’s course). While at NTOA I spoke with Al Dustan of Close Quarters Tactical, who presently putting the finishing touches on a training course that goes with the purchase of every law enforcement package noted below. Dustan’s trainers will go to you, or you can fly to their state-of-the-art facility in Shelby Township (Mich.).

Lots of companies bury their rifles, submerge them in water, drop them from significant heights, and whatnot. Daniel Defense steps it up a few notches. (PoliceOne Image)
The Rifles
The program begins with the Daniel Defense Basic Patrol Rifle Package, which consists of the Daniel Defense M4 V1 basic model rifle, six Magpul magazines, a red-dot optic, and a patrol bag. The Lightweight Package consists of the M4 V5 LW model rifle (which weighs just six pounds and eight ounces, fully loaded) with 12-inch continuous picatinny rails, Magpul pop-up sights, the six Magpul magazines, the red-dot optic, and the patrol bag.

The Special Services Package consists of the M4 V4 rifle with an 11.5-inch barrel, which effectively covers a nice wide selection of rounds — you can train on less expensive ammo and have “the good stuff” in your magazines on patrol.

Finally, there’s the Designated Marksman’s Package, which is a long-range weapon in 5.56. This setup includes the Bushnell 2.5-16 optic on the top rail with a DRS 25 red-dot optic mounted off to the side, making it a multi-purpose platform so you can move through the close-quarters environment to a standoff position and take a precision shot should that need arise. This was the system which had me most interested, mostly because it’s pretty different from what I’ve got in my safe at home.

I don’t (yet!) own a Daniel Defense rifle, but I have a friend who owns one of their systems and loves it, and I’ve come to appreciate how solid they are. I mean solid. Nothing shakes, jiggles, moves, or vibrates, even under the harshest conditions and most dynamic action. The company does incredibly rigorous testing on their rifles. Lots of companies bury their rifles, submerge them in water, drop them from significant heights, and whatnot. Daniel Defense steps it up a few notches. I don’t remember ever seeing a “drop test” like this one, and I know for certain I’ve never seen a test that uses a commercially-available product called “Southern Thunder.”

Check out this video, then scroll down for information on how you can get one of these systems.

The Financing
When I spoke with Brent Slaughter during our time together at NTOA (and via phone a week or so thereafter), I learned that the testing you’ve just watched is done on all their systems. Very impressive indeed. What’s even more impressive is what Brent told me about the company’s new financing program for law enforcement.

Slaughter travels overseas a lot — he’s a business development manager whose “turf” includes police organizations in a variety of foreign countries. He returned home one day from a trip to an Asia-Pacific country and knocked on the boss’s door, saying, roughly, “Why don’t we have special programs for individual American law enforcement officers like we do for some governments in other countries?”

The boss said, roughly, “Good idea. Make it happen.”

So he did.

“What we’ve done for those departments that want to partner with us,” Slaughter told me, “we’re going to offer financing, training, and other support to an individual officer or an agency to purchase Daniel Defense rifles specifically for patrol use, and we will finance that officer or that agency for up to a year, interest free. It requires a small down payment to initiate the order, and have the rifle shipped out.”

When you go to the Daniel Defense website, you’ll notice that most of their rifles are “sold out,” but the fact is that the company has a stock always set aside for law enforcement so when your order is placed, the system is shipped.

“For law enforcement, we know they need their weapons now, so we have an inventory for them. If a police officer orders a package today, it will be shipped out tomorrow, and he’ll have it for use the next day. All we ask is that the department guarantee the loan through a payroll deduction. The department takes out whatever that payment is — whether they’re paying guys every month or every two weeks or whatever it is — the department then sends us payment for the collected number of packages we have going to that municipality or agency. What that does it is minimizes some of the complications in the accounting. Instead of us getting 13 different checks from 13 different guys on 13 different days, we have one payment for everyone in that agency who has a Daniel Defense package.”

The payroll deduction can — if the agency chooses — be made pre-tax, and of course, since the purchase is for duty use, is tax-deductable.

The Bottom Line
So, how much will one of these systems set you back?

“We’ve standardized the pricing so it’s the same for every single agency no matter what size, no matter how many officers get these rifles,” Slaughter explained. “Each of these packages, with the down payment program, each solution comes out to about $80 per pay period if you get paid every two weeks.”

In order to be considered for the LE discount, you need to first register an account on DanielDefense.com. Once you’ve been verified, you’ll be notified by email that you’re free to order through the website at the discounted price.

I don’t usually write about firearms here on PoliceOne. My friends Dick Fairburn, Ron Avery, Andrew Butts, Lindsey Bertomen, Bill Campbell, Lance Eldridge, Tom Marx, Jeff Hall, Tim Dees, Glenn French, Ken Hardesty, Dan Danaher, Mike Boyle, and Dennis Haworth are far more knowledgeable than me and are almost certainly also better marksmen than me. But the fact is that the Daniel Defense packages of top-notch weapons systems, coupled with top-notch training and support, coupled with a top-notch financing opportunity was too compelling to ignore. Check it out for yourself at DanielDefense.com, or email me and I’ll forward your contact information over to Brent Slaughter at Daniel Defense.

Advertisements

Posted in AR15, AR15 Upgrades, Police Topics | Leave a Comment »

Evolution of the 1911 from Down Range TV

Posted by Gunner on September 28, 2011

An interesting video from Down Range TV on the evolution of the 1911 since the 1970’s until today. Enjoy!

1911 Evolution Link

Posted in 1911 45's | Tagged: | Leave a Comment »

Rock Island Tactical 9MM

Posted by Gunner on September 24, 2011

If you want to save money on ammunition without sacrificing your beloved 1911, then this is the pistol you need! The Rock Island Armory Tactical 1911, one of the most popular 1911s on the market, is now available in 9mm. Compared to the more expensive .45 ACP model, you can feed it for much less money and keep the same number of rounds going down range.

I have always been very fond of Rock Island 1911 pistols. First and foremost they are well made with all, they have the features I like and the price is great at roughly $450 for all Tactical models. Don’t let the price fool you into thinking that it is cheaply made because it surely is not. I own several in 45 ACP, including both the full size and compact version. I received this sample Tactical in 9mm directly from Rock Island.

Now a number of you will say “but it’s a 9mm”! Well yes it is, but over the last few years the 9mm has gone through some serious improvements. Loads like the Buffalo Bore 9mm +P+ (115 gr. at 1,400 fps / 500 ft/lbs) and the Cor-Bon DPX (115 gr at 1250fps / 399 ft/lbs) will not leave you underarmed. Another advantage of a 9mm version of the 1911 is capacity. The Rock Island Tactical 9mm holds ten rounds with eleven rounds using a new magazine from Metalform. Of course, if you want to keep the 45 .ACP for defense you can always use the 9mm for practice.

Affectionately referred to as “The Rock” among owners, the Tactical has all of the features desired by most shooters. The pistol is made from forged 4120 steel with a hammer forged barrel. Its safety is an extended ambidextrous with Novak type low mount black sights. The grip safety has the beavertail configuration. A full length guiderod is also included. The barrel has a nice feature with an 11 degree muzzle crown to protect it from damage should the pistol be dropped. It also has a lowered and flared ejection port. The hammer is skeletonized. A durable parkerized finish is standard.

Rock Island packs each pistol in a hard black plastic case with one magazine. The Rock Island warranty is lifetime for the original owner.

Trigger pull on this example is 5 pounds with little takeup. This was a bit of a surprise because the trigger didn’t really feel like 5 pounds. Let’s just say the trigger is certainly a good one.

The stats are standard for a full size 1911 and weighs in at 38.5 ounces.

**Range Time**

I spent about two hours in this session firing 250 rounds total of Armscor 115 .grn 9mm. Testing distances were 7, 10 and 15 yards. I used the standard 5 inch targets from Birchwood Casey.

The first rounds fired were some older Winchester Silvertips I had laying around. If anything will test a new pistol for reliability it is hollowpoints. I fired all 50 rounds at various distances and speed to check more for reliability than accuracy. The magazine was a bit stiff to load 9 rounds. After fifty rounds it eased up a bit. Even so there were no failures of any kind.

After loading up with the Armscorp ammo I set my target up at 7 yards and started working on accuracy testing.

Moving back to 10 yards I fired this string again measuring right at 1 inch. Pretty darn good for a new pistol right out of the box. Many times when a new pistol is taken to the range the first time some adjustment of the sights is needed. Rock Island sights these pistols in at the factory. I’ve never had to adjust the sights on one yet.

This range session was no surprise. I’ve spent enough time with these pistols to know them pretty well. As I said earlier they are 100% reliable and this one was no exception. There were no failures of any type during the entire session of 300 rounds.

I mentioned earlier the magazine was rather stiff and difficult to load. After using one magazine for all 300 rounds it was no longer difficult to load that ninth round. Aftermarket 10 round high quality Metalform are available from MidwayUSA [for $27.99](http://www.midwayusa.com/viewproduct/?productnumber=582914.)

Recoil in a 9mm 1911 is very soft allowing the shooter to get back on target easily. It makes a range session firing 300 rounds easy on the shooting hand.

**Conclusion**

The Rock Island Armory 1911 have been very successful since they began being imported from the Philippines about five years ago. This is a 1911 with a large following that just keeps growing. New models are released fairly often.

What you get is a 1911 that is accurate, reliable and well made. The price sure is hard to beat. Honestly it handles and shoots as well as my much more expensive Springfield Armory with the same features.

Posted in 1911 45's, 1911 9MM's | Tagged: | 4 Comments »

S&W Bodyguard .380

Posted by Gunner on September 19, 2011

In the last year .380 pocket pistols have become very popular after years of little interest in them. I credit this to the increased number of states allowing concealed carry. Of course we have the older designs such as the Walther PPK and the Sig P232. The new designs are a good deal smaller and lighter. S&W has joined the ranks of companies making a very small well designed “pocket” pistol.

S&W is always on the leading edge in new firearm design. The “Bodyguard” series is no exception. These are new designs not updated versions of older designs. The S&W .380 semi auto is one in a series of these new designs made for concealed carry for civilians and law enforcement use.

To really appreciate how small and convenient this pistol is look at the size compared to my average size hand in the picture below.

A closer look

The pistol is double action only. It’s a traditional hammer fired pistol rather than a striker type. The hammer is recessed in the frame. When you first take it out of the box the trigger is pretty heavy but lightens up after firing a100 rounds or so. I now have 200 rounds fired through it and the trigger is very satisfactory. A loaded chamber indicator is milled as a crescent cut in the top of the slide.

This firing mechanism makes it safe to carry in a pants pocket without the worry of an accidental discharge. If this is still a concern there is also a manual safety placed in approximately the same location as a 1911. The safety is also very easy to manipulate. It’s very positive when clicked into the safe or fire position. I’ve carried it in a front and back jeans pocket with no printing through your clothing. I’m sure this is partly due to the width of just ¾ of an inch. Not only is the “Bodyguard” small it’s also very light at just 11.85 ounces!

The picture below shows the controls. From left to right is the takedown lever, slide release and finally the manual safety.

The magazine release is in the usual position. Sights are black and well made with no sharp edges. They provide a nice sharp sight picture. The magazine holds six rounds with a seventh in the chamber. The magazine comes from the factory with a finger rest installed. Another magazine base is included which is flat making the pistol grip even smaller. No matter which base you choose chances are your little finger will sit under the base of the grip. This provides a sturdy grip and reduces recoil. One magazine is included with the pistol. Additional magazines are $22.00 each. The front of the grip has two finger grooves.

As is usual with S&W the slide is stainless steel with a Melonite finish. The frame is Zytel polymer.

One great feature on the “Bodyguard” series is a built in red laser. Insight Company makes the laser for S&W. This laser is located inline with the barrel and placed just under the barrel. A conveniently placed gray button is on both sides of the of the frame near the front. The laser can be activated from either side. The first push of the button and the laser is a solid beam. A second push of the button and the laser pulses. A third push turns the laser off. Included are two hex wrenches to adjust windage and elevation coordinating the laser with the sights. Once adjusted the bullet hits where the laser points on your target. This laser works fine at night or in low light but is not visible on a sunny day. The picture below shows the laser activated

Stats

Model: BODYGUARD® 380
Caliber: .380 Auto
Capacity: 6+1 Rounds
Barrel Length: 2.75″ / 7.0 cm
Frame Size: Compact
Action: Double Action Only (Hammer Fired)
Front Sight: Stainless Steel
Rear Sight: Drift Adjustable
Grip: Polymer
Overall Length: 5.25″ / 13.3 cm
Weight: 11.85 oz / 335.9 g
Frame Material: Polymer
Material: Stainless Steel w/Melonite® Finish
Finish: Matte Black
Purpose: Personal Protection
Law Enforcement

The grip angle is just about perfect and points naturally. Other ergonomic features include a stippled grip surface which provides a good grip even when your hands are damp. The aforementioned finger grooves on the front of the grip strap help a good deal even with the flat magazine base used.

Also included is a nondescript carrying case with looks like an organizer that so many people carry. Inside the zipper case is a built in holster with a magazine pouch built in on the other side of the case. The only thing that might give it away is a small S&W logo on the outside of the pouch. I guess they couldn’t resist putting the logo on. At least the carry case and logo are black so it doesn’t show very well.

On The Range

Let me preface this range report with a bit of information on the purpose of the pocket pistol. Normally I would shoot from the 7, 10 and 15 yards. This type of pistol is made for distances as close as touching distance to 7 yards or so. It’s possible to have an encounter at a greater distance but the caliber and sight radius of this pistol and others of the type are not made for this kind of encounter.

I kept this session close with no slow fire. Distances are 3 yards and 7 yards. For this session I used ammunition from Federal ball, Cor-Bon DPX and Winchester Silvertips. The targets used are 5 inch Birchwood Casey adhesives. My goal was to keep all rounds fired within the five inch circle rapid fire.

First up was the Federal 95 grn. FMJ. Drawing from a universal size nylon holster I fired 30 rounds from 3 yards with all rounds inside the 5 inch target grouped within 3 ½ inches on average. Next was the Cor-Bon DPX. This is a hot round with a fair amount of recoil for a .380. Again, I fired 30 rounds total. All rounds stayed within the 5 inch circle rapid fire. With the additional recoil the average was right at the five inch target size.

I back up to 7 yards and repeated the previous string with all three types of ammunition. Firing 30 rounds of each brand of ammunition bringing the pistol up to eye level and using a flash sight picture in rapid fire. Three rounds went outside the 5 inch target. These were the Cor-Bon DPX rounds with more recoil. After that many rounds fired my hands were getting a bit tired. I was very satisfied with the results.

Conclusion

I’m really impressed with this pistol. I normally don’t say that because in all honesty it takes a good deal to impress me anymore. This is one I may keep and that’s rare!

This “Bodyguard” is so handy and light to carry as well as fast to get the first shot off it would be hard to beat as a backup pistol or one you grab to make a quick trip to the convenience store.

The .380 should be the smallest caliber considered for defensive use. With the newer ammunition designs it’s a fairly good round if you do your part. Cor-Bon’s 80 grn DPX is an example of an effective loading. The muzzle velocity is 1050 fps. Pushing a solid copper Barnes bullet. Using this Cor-Bon load I would feel pretty well protected with this new S&W.
Guns for Sale.com usually has this pistol in stock.

Happy Shooting!

Posted in S&W Semi Auto's | Tagged: , | 6 Comments »

Interesting News From The Spec Ops World

Posted by Gunner on September 12, 2011

I received this information from a friend in the Special Ops community. I thought i’d just cut and paste his email for your reading.This information is in no way classified but I will not use his name for obvious reasons.


Glock 22 40 Cal Rough Frame

The Army did drop the 1911 about 3 years ago for the Glock 22 rough texture frame which was “experimental” at the time. Glock really didn’t know if they were gonna go with it commercially at the time but since others in the community liked it, they put it on some Gen 4 guns.

There was a down select to the STI 2011 and Glock 22 in .40S&W. The 1911 were costing us way to much per gun to keep them running. Parts, labor, X-rays, you get the picture. Even when Kentucky (Lexington Depot) would build a gun, the unit gunsmiths would practically and literally rebuild the gun for the individual operator during the training course. There was a contract let years ago for a select manufacturer to make the frames and slides and several different parts and barrel manufacturers to make the internals. Much like the MEU/MARSOC pistols a while ago they just got to expensive.
And we changed the way we shoot. In training Army it was two in the chest and one in skull if needed. Now, if I give you 1 you are getting 2, if I give you 2 your are getting 5, if you get 5 then you get the rest of the mag. Plain and simple I am not going to let you get up and hurt one of my team mates.
And we will put all my shots right across your pelvis and then the shoulder girdle. I don’t care if you got a trauma team on hand, 5 shots across the pelvis and you ain’t getting up. The enemy is likely to wear some kind of armor now a days just as much as we are. 2 in a 3×5 card ain’t cutting it. So there are lots more ammo expended in training, which effects how well the guns hold up also.

We went through several different down selects for a double stack auto. The STI did not hold up to OTC and the students did not want to run their go-no go shooting test with a chance of failing. One Sabre SQDN got issued both guns and the guys selected to deploy with the Glocks to Iraq. So that ended the question. Now there is a cornucopia of 22’s, 23’s and 27’s across that command. We went from the 228 to the G-19/ G-26 and G-30’s.

And I understand the Navy has dropped the Sig and now gone to the HK (I want to say the) P-30 family in 9mm. I don’t know if they are going to the .40S&W? Air Force STS went to the G-22/23/27 and HK-416 cuz their Army partners did. Really all of JSOC is following what the Army Unit does.

UPDATE

Well here we go again. Just as we think all is lined out we have one service who doesn’t want to play ball. I know the Marines are broke but geez. Of course Mil.com has been wrong before—many times.

Marine special operators may have a new pistol by years’ end, but it won’t be the latest in sidearm technology.
The Corps’ weapons officials are bypassing decades of handgun innovations and sticking with the revered .45 caliber 1911 for its new Close Quarters Battle Pistol.
The service launched the effort to replace the Marine Corps Forces Special Operations Command M45 pistol, another 1911 design, in spring 2010.
The Marines want to take the manufacturing burden off of the internal gunsmiths who currently custom build the M45 and tap a commercial gun maker to provide a similar pistol.

But some military pistol experts maintain that the 1911 design, while extremely accurate, requires more training and care than other modern tactical pistols.
“You’ve got to be more dialed in on keeping it lubed; you’ve got to be more dialed in on trouble-shooting if there is parts or magazine issues,” said Larry Vickers, a well-known tactical pistol instructor and 1911 expert.
Marine weapons officials, however, are satisfied with the design and already have the money for a commercial off-the-shelf 1911 pistol, Clark said. Starting a new pistol program would require additional approval and could be a gamble as billions of dollars in defense cuts loom over all of the services, Marine officials said.
Like the M45, the new Close Quarters Battle Pistol will be “more accurate and more reliable than just the standard 1911” and will be equipped with a Picatinny rail for mounting weapon lights, said Charles Clark III, who oversees infantry weapons requirements at the Corps’ Combat Development and Integration office in Quantico, Va.
Clark acknowledged that the service is in the middle of “source selection” but would not provide any details on the gun manufactures involved in the competition.
One contender is the Springfield Armory Full Size MC Operator, a 1911 design that looks very much like the M45. It has also been reported that the Marines are also looking at a version of Colt’s custom 1911 rail gun.
The Marines hope to make a selection by the end of this year, Clark said.
Like other services, the Corps issues the standard M9 9mm pistol to its conventional troops, and has no plans to change that anytime soon, Clark said.

The service began issuing custom 1911 .45 pistols to its elite Force Reconnaissance units in the 1990s. Gunsmiths at the Quantico Weapons Training Battalion Precision Weapons Section hand built them from old 1911s that had been replaced by the M9 in the mid 1980s.
With the creation of the first MARSOC units in 2006, the Corps began issuing the slightly updated M45. It features improved ergonomics, a custom trigger and better sights.
The problem, Clark said, is that the creation of MARSOC has caused the requirement to grow from 400 pistols to 4,000 pistols. Finding enough surplus 1911s for the Precision Weapons Section’s custom rebuilds became impractical.
That increased growth made it “really unworkable to have a hand-built solution,” Clark said.
Other special operations units — including the Navy SEALs — have upgraded to more modern handguns such as the Sig Sauer P226.
Vickers, who spent his Army career serving in special operations units, teaches the intricacies of the 1911 in one of his most popular Vickers Tactical courses.
In many ways, the 1911 is comparable to the M16 family, Vickers said. It’s extremely ergonomic and very accurate like the M16, but it suffers from reliability problems if it’s not properly maintained.

“It requires a higher degree of end-user sophistication to keep it running,” said Vickers, who prefers a Glock 17 for its reliability and simple design.
Marine officials maintain that the service has the money to replace the M45 with something similar. Choosing a more modern pistol would call for a new requirement, a venture that’s unlikely to win approval as the Pentagon faces massive cuts to defense spending, Clark said.
“With the constrained fiscal environment, getting a new requirement approved requires a separate funding line,” he said.

A bit of proof for the naysayers who seem to refuse to believe the above changes in handguns for the Spec Ops world. These photos are from an un-named arms room. There are Glocks in several models and a few 1911’s. These are gen 3 and gen 4 Glocks. These pics were sent to me from “Taz” and many thanks for his help! As they say a picture is worth a thousand words:-)

 

 

 

Copyright photos

Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Gunner777 and Gunners Journal with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Just comment and chances are I will ok sharing material. Some photos belong to others who do not want them shared. Please respect their wishes.

Posted in 1911 45's, Glock | Tagged: , , | 31 Comments »