Cool gear, firearms for the hot summer
As we start to roll into the hot season, let’s take a look at some of the cool gear available to shooters this summer.
The MPAR 556 is a sub-$1,000 piston-driven AR-style rifle from MasterPiece Arms. It offers a host of features that many shooters will appreciate including a side-folding, adjustable-length buttstock, a full length Picatinny rail for the mounting of optics, a free floating handguard and a non-reciprocating, side-mounted charging handle.
The handguard is a proprietary design machined from high-grade aluminum. It allows the shooter to add varying lengths of Picatinny rails on the sides and bottom. The shooter can decide on what amount of rail is needed, and where, while leaving off unnecessary portions to save weight.
The barrel length is 16 inches and has a 1:9-inch twist. The barrel is threaded and ready for one of the MasterPiece Arms suppressors. Total weight is 7.8 pounds. MSRP is $999.
A firearm is only good if it is running, and keeping your guns cleaned and lubed is one of the ways to make sure they will function properly. Rand Brands developed a new gun oil called the Rand CLP.
CLP stands for “cleaning, lubricating and protectant.” The single product is designed to clean the gun, keep it lubed and help prevent any corrosion while carried or stored.
CLPs are not a new concept, but Rand brings some interesting features to the product. First, the oil is non-toxic and does not have any objectionable smells. I like Hoppes #9 as much as the next guy, but not everyone does.
The Rand product uses a variety of nanoparticles mixed with the oil that improve lubricity. Boron is one of the nanoparticles, and it draws heat away from the metal. Shooters may argue if the amount of heat pulled from the gun while being fired is enough to improve reliability, but most shooters will agree that keeping a gun cooler during sustained fire is a good thing.
Rand CLP lists for $9.99 and goes up from there depending on quantity ordered.
In the case of this new Streamlight product, being green has nothing to do with Kermfailed stimulus projects. Green is the color of the laser used in the new TLR-2G.
The TLR-2G is a white light and laser aiming device rolled into one unit that mounts to your gun’s Picatinny rail. Depending on your desires, the unit can activate just the light, just the laser, or both at the same time.
Why green? Visibility. Red lasers are effective in low light conditions, but are almost always washed out in bright light conditions. Green lasers are much more visible in all lighting conditions, and can be used in daylight. The green laser on the TLR-2G is impressive both at night and during the day.
The white light on this unit is also bright: 200 lumens. This is more than sufficient for clearing rooms and backyards.
Retail pricing on the TLR-2G runs $550, though street pricing is normally much less.
Springfield XDS 9
Looking for a thin, striker-fired 9mm for concealed carry? You might want to take a look at the new Springfield XDS 9 that is due out this summer. Modeled after the popular XDS in .45 ACP, the new pistol is chambered for the lighter-recoiling 9mm cartridge.
The new guns hold seven rounds in the magazine, with a nine-round extended magazine available as an option. The seven round mag fits flush with the bottom of the magazine well. For most adults, the pinky finger of the dominant hand will fold under the gun, rather than on the grip of the pistol.
I had a chance to shoot this pistol at the SHOT Show and I was impressed by it. It ran flawlessly, was accurate and was light recoiling. Other than the pinky issue, the gun fits very well into my hand.
According to Springfield, the XDS 9 is the exact same size as the .45 caliber version of the gun. The only difference is the 9mm gun is slightly heavier because it has a smaller bore, which means a thicker barrel than the .45.
Although it hasn’t gotten a lot of press (yet,) I think the XDS 9 will be a very popular pistol.
Magpul AK-47 Magazines
Known for all manner of cool kit for the AR-style rifles, Magpul is now making a limited number of products for the AK-47 rifles. One of those new AK products is a PMAG for the 7.62×39 cartridge.
The new PMAG AK/AKM MOE magazine holds 30 rounds and is made of the same high impact poymer as the other PMAGs. It has a low-friction, self-lubricating follower and a constant curve to enhance feeding reliability. The floorplate is removeable and the spring is stainless steel.
While Magpul has an outstanding reputation with the existing line of PMAGs, only time will tell if that success will transfer to AK products. There are already several quality domestic AK-47 magazines on the market now. The Tapco AK mags are considered reliable and are very inexpensive. At about $30, many people consider the US Palm mags the gold standard AK-47 magazines for durability and reliability.
Magpul has not listed the MSRP yet, but expects to ship the magazines later this summer.