Which Laser Options Are Best for Your Shotgun?

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by Jay Chambers

Technology is evolving at a very fast pace, and in terms of shotguns, you get more and more options as time goes by. It wouldn’t be surprising at all if we saw major improvements in the gun industry in the years to come, considering the rapid growth in options.

One of the things that make an important part of the shotgun and the entire hunting experience is the laser. Lasers will help you aim much better – thus, you’ll be able to enjoy an enhanced experience. So, which laser options are best for your shotgun?

What Should You Consider when Buying a Laser Sight for Your Shotgun?

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The Accuracy and Reliability of the Sako Finnlight

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by Jay Chambers

The Sako Finnlight is a surprisingly light, high-performance rifle for hunters who make long treks into the wilderness for their game. It’s perfectly trimmed and ideal for young people or those of smaller stature, too.

Sako is well-known and respected for their classic Model 85. The Finnlight is a pared-down version featuring a synthetic stock, fluted barrel, and stainless steel construction. It’s lightweight and extremely durable.

Operation

Integrated rails atop the receiver allow for scope mounting and the polished bolt body means you get smooth operation when lining up a shot. The bolt handle is 2.5 inches with a teardrop-shaped knob that’s easy to grip and features a finish and action to match the barrel.

When the action is cocked, you know it by a red dot indicator on the base of the bolt shroud. It’s an elegant and easy-to-use rifle that doesn’t compromise performance.

Reliability

The proprietary Controlled Round design gives the cartridge rim direct engagement as it’s taken from the top of the magazine. It’s fed at a precise angle allowing for more control, which improves reliability over other rifle designs.

You can’t underestimate the role that comfort plays in reliability, either. Because of its lightweight but durable design, handling is superb. When it comes to an accurate shot, you can count on its ease of use.

Design

Despite its synthetic construction, this rifle has sporty lines and an accented cheekpiece. It doesn’t look cheap like some synthetic stocks do. The black finish makes it look sleek while keeping it practical.

It’s molded from two plastic pieces, so the butt feels hollow, but the sidewalls are thick, so you won’t experience twisting of the free-floating barrel.

The pistol grip features rubber grip panels with small rings that deviate from the usual checkered pattern, making it look like a modern, premium rifle rather than something we’ve seen time and again. They still enable a good grip even with wet or muddy hands.

The large recoil pad cushions the blow of the .270 cartridge.

Barrel

The primary attraction of the Finnlight is its practicality. The 22-inch barrel is perfect for a variety of uses. It’s not too big, and it’s not too small. Goldilocks would be in love.

It’s easy to control, for extreme accuracy. It’s threaded, too, so you can fit a moderator without it getting too cumbersome.

This sporty, gently tapering design is .637 inches at the muzzle and fluted for most of its length. It has a distinctive look not shared with its competitors. This helps to save weight for greater versatility and control over your accuracy.

Scope mounts feature the Opti-Lok system finished to match the rest of the rifle.

When recoil occurs, bases work to grip the action tighter to secure the system from hitting hard.

Trigger

Most Sako rifles feature a standard single-stage trigger with a 3-pound weight. It’s adjustable from 2 to 4 pounds with an allen key at the back of the magazine well.

The trigger blade is slim with grooves to improve grip. The magazine well and the trigger guard are made from two pieces of aluminum and fitted together to match the rest of the rifle.

With a horizontally sliding safety lever, you can easily move it forward to firing or backward to safe. The safety setting locks both the bolt and the trigger.

Enacting a small plunger in front of the safety lever allows for removing the cartridge while keeping the trigger locked.

The magazine release mechanism is called the “Total Control Latch.” It’s designed to prevent an accidental release, which is incredibly useful on a hunting rifle.

Performance

The .270 cartridge is capable of a lot of velocity, and is highly accurate at 100 yards or less. It’s perfect for deer and other big game hunting. However, it’s versatile enough for lightweight shooting, too.

This high-performance rifle warms up after as little as 10 rounds, so it’s ready to go at a moment’s notice and you won’t have any problems with shifting due to heat.

Thread your Finnlight for a moderator and accommodated .22-250 cartridges and transition easily from big game to an exceptional fox rifle.

Overall

The practicality of its design and performance makes it unmatched in terms of accuracy and reliability. It’s not often you find a manufacturer able to marry an attractive design with durability and a lightweight frame while still achieving these goals.

The Sako Finnlight is a perfect combination of everything you need in a hunting rifle. Men, women, young people, beginners, and experienced shooters will all find something appealing about it.

It has excellent out-of-the-box accuracy with a rugged, no-nonsense style. It’s versatility is also an excellent feature. It handles well with soft recoil. It’s the perfect light rifle with a heavy caliber.

The Pros and Cons of the Palmetto State Armory

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by Jay Chambers


Palmetto State Armory (PSA) makes really affordable guns. And, they’re one of the few American manufacturers that makes AK-47 rifles. But, are Palmetto State Armory rifles any good?

There’s been some dissent around the internet about whether or not Palmetto State Armory makes reliable rifles. Who’s right? The fans or the haters?

The truth is somewhere in between. There are pros and cons to buying firearms from Palmetto State Armory. Here’s what you can expect.

Pro: great deals

If you head over to their site, you’ll notice that they have lots of daily sales and limited time discounts. So, there’s plenty of opportunities to get gear at great prices from PSA.

They’re also very selective about what they put on sale. Most models and products that are on sale are in stock in their warehouse. So sale items ship quickly. That may not be the case with every order (but we’ll get to that shortly).

Also, the Palmetto State Armory components and rifles are really well priced. You can get complete PSA rifles for around $500, which is a legitimate deal.

But, if the prices make you skeptical…

Pro: excellent quality

Palmetto State Armory does make some of their own components. However, many of their parts are sourced from other manufacturers.

The third-party components are usually unmarked. But they buy rifle parts from manufacturers like FN Herstal, Midwest Industries, and other companies.

Palmetto State Armory uses bulk pricing to reduce their manufacturing costs and offer better prices to their customers. If you’re concerned that the price looks a bit too low for quality components, worry not. They’re not cutting corners.

In fact, a Palmetto State Armory AR-15 was one of the first AR-15s to pass the AK Operators Union 5000 round torture test. And, it was one of the most basic PSA AR-15s.

That’s not to say that you’ll never have a problem with a Palmetto State Armory rifle. But, any issues are probably anomalies, not the standard.

But, if you do have a problem…

Pro: solid customer service

So far, reports from the field say that Palmetto State Armory’s customer service has been top notch.

Whenever there’s a problem, the company has never hesitated to replace parts and send them in a hurry. Most of the time, customers aren’t even asked to send the defective part back.

The company certainly stands behind their products. And, will make things right if you have a problem.

There are some legitimate complaints about the customer service, though.

Con: slow customer service

Although the customer service is excellent once you get in touch with them, Palmetto State Armory isn’t a huge company. And, it can take some time to get on the phone with a customer service representative.

Some PSA buyers have recommended using the vendor contact page on AR15.com.

The slow customer service is likely a byproduct of the time that they take with each customer. It helps to remember that if you find yourself aggravated by the slow response time.

Con: slow shipping

For most of the daily deals, things go out pretty quickly. And, customers have gotten their gear within a few days.

However, most buyers have noted that, if you order on a Monday, you won’t get your stuff by the weekend. It usually takes five days or more for Palmetto State Armory orders to arrive.

The shipping time isn’t unreasonable. But, if you need your stuff fast, you may have to get it somewhere else, or pay for the quick shipping.

Con: fairly basic rifles

This is only a con for those who want a really sweet rifle right out of the box. But, the complete PSA rifles are fairly simple models. They’re effective, to be sure.

However, they don’t come with a ton of bells and whistles. Most PSA rifles are essentially mil-spec rifles with a few upgrades. Most of the base models are equipped with A2 pistol grips and mil-spec M4 stocks.

So, there are plenty of reasons to upgrade a few bolt on parts, if you get one of the PSA budget rifles.

But, if you want something that’s a little more high end right out of the box, Palmetto State Armory does offer a few models with stainless steel barrels and Magpul MOE furniture. They’re not super custom rifles like you might get from a company like LWRC or Daniel Defense. But, the more expensive PSA rifles are still capable guns.

There’s a range of options. But, the overall trend is that Palmetto State Armory generally makes affordable, reliable rifles, not super custom rifles. 

Conclusion

You may have noticed that none of the cons are related to product quality. That’s because PSA guns are well-made. Quality isn’t an issue.

Many Palmetto State Armory rifles are fairly basic models. So, PSA rifles may not be for everyone. But, you could easily use a Palmetto State Armory rifle as a foundation for building a super tactical rifle. And, it would be a cost efficient method.

In the end, the complaints about Palmetto State Armory are probably overblown. And, the PSA superfans may be exaggerating how awesome Palmetto State Armory rifles are. But, if you buy a rifle from Palmetto State Armory, you’ll get a quality firearm. You may not get it quickly. But, you’ll be happy with it once it arrives.

Top 3 Restored Guns That Look Absolutely Brand New

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Vintage and classic guns have a charm of their own. However, without proper preservation and restoration works, it is quite hard enough to appreciate them. Many of these guns have been handed down from one generation to another. For some families, a vintage gun becomes an heirloom that is accompanied with tales of hunting and adventure with them. 

Due to age and previous use, these old guns are worn by tears and scratches. Some may not even function anymore, but that does not stop families from displaying such prized heirlooms on the wall. 

Some are not intended to be used anymore, but classic rifles and vintage guns do make great additions to any gun collection and display. For some, such prized guns and rifles are only used during hunting season. Either way, you need to preserve and restore these old guns to keep them in good shape. Below are the top 3 restored guns that look absolutely brand new due to quality restoration work.

Winchester Model 88

The Winchester Model is a popular rifle in the 1950s. If your family is big on guns, one of your grandfathers probably owns one. The Winchester Model 88 is a good rifle for hunting bears and moose. If restored properly, the vintage look of this rifle is enough to make it as a prized addition to any gun collector. For some families, it is still being passed on from father to son – and ultimately used during hunting season.

The Sharpshooter Fly Gun

Now this is definitely not in the same level as The Winchester Model 88 rifle, but it is a special fly-swatter gun that deserves a spot on this list. The gun was manufactured back in the 1930s, and it boasts of a highly accurate and precise sharpshooting ability. 

The manufacturers claim that you can kill flies from 6 to 8 feet away with it. However, that would still depend on your shooting skills. Still, it is worth a try – if you don’t mind filling your home with lead shot later on. 

The Sharpshooter Fly Gun is generally harmless compared to other guns, and its novelty makes it a great addition to any vintage gun collection! Sure, you may not kill big bears and deer with it, but at least it helps in pest control.

Smith & Wesson Straight Line Target Pistol

This Smith & Wesson Straight Line Target Pistol is noted for its innovative design and feature during the time it was released. Instead of creating a top-break design based on revolvers, Smith & Wesson decided to create this pistol with an in-line hand cocked striker. The objective is to eliminate the downward push on the barrel which usually comes from a pivoting hammer (a common feature in most pistols).

However, it’s not really the innovative design that makes this pistol really special. This pistol is worth restoring and preserving due to its rarity. This pistol was doing well (sales-wise), but when The Great Depression came in 1929, Smith & Wesson stopped manufacturing them – leaving the market with just 1,870 of these.

Again, any gun would look great with the proper restoration work. These vintage guns however take it to the next level because of their historical value and novelty. Some like Winchester Model 88 can even be used up to this day! You can look up the full list of restored classic vintage guns and rifles here.

Author Bio: Gemma Reeves is a seasoned writer who enjoys creating helpful articles and interesting stories. She has worked with several clients across different industries such as advertising, online marketing, technology, healthcare, family matters, and more. She is also an aspiring entrepreneur who is engaged in assisting other aspiring entrepreneurs in finding the best office space for their business. 

Check out her company here: https://digitoolreview.com/

Chuck Pressburg

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SGM(R) Chuck Pressburg of Presscheck Consulting discusses training.

The subject of bullseye-style shooting vs. combat shooting (not the sport, the actual disciplines) are on another instructor’s FB page and since I took the time to address the shooter’s question on a response to a sub-thread that wouldn’t be seen by many, I thought I should repost my thoughts here.

If you can’t execute near-perfect under perfect conditions, everything starts to deteriorate rapidly from there…

Combat shooting is a complex math game where you are stacking tolerances of maximum spreads of human, weapon, and ammo in real time against the acceptable impact zone, what’s in front and beyond it and usually while both you and the impact zone as well as potential itermediate barriers are all in movement.

An acceptable “firing solution” occurs when you believe that you can place the bullet close enough to where you want it to land and make the decision to ignite the primer.

Fundamentals don’t change, How much emphasis we put on any single fundamental changes rapidly as we attempt to get a proper firing solution.

For shooting students exhibiting significant inability to exercise any fundamentals, an isolation of flaws and focus on improving them individually should take place. In the DOD we used the “crawl, walk, run” method of teaching and training.

Basic trigger press drills and sight diagnostics are FOUNDATIONAL in nature, but are crawl-level events. The only time they should be brought up with a “grown” professional is when their shooting foundation was built out of sand and they shoot like dog crap.

So shooting is hitting what you want and “bullseye-style” shooting (shooting bulls at distance) is the perfect execution of these fundamentals.

Combat shooting is like being a Doolittle Raider on the deck of the USS Hornet and someone is ordering you to strip critical items off your plane to be light enough to take off.

“What you do mean I have to dump my tail guns” (perfect sight picture)?! I NEED THOSE”!

“Look son, you’re gonna dump that weight (accept flash sight pictures at closer distances) if you want to make it off this flight deck”! (Shoot fast)

So combat shooting isn’t a different technique as much as it is the process of sacrifing perfection in real time in order to achieve an acceptable outcome sooner. Here’s the secret that nobody will tell you: 99.9% of people choose poorly and sacrifice too many of those fundamentals when fear of death is upon them.

Gripping the ever-living crap out of your blaster and hammering your trigger as fast as you humanly can, WILL work (I do it all the time), HOWEVER it will only work for certain firing solutions, and if you don’t read the cues that you need to ratchet things back and apply more of your fundamentals, then you are spraying. That cue will NORMALLY come from your dot or front sight post. It is nearly impossible for your dot to stay on target and your bullet to miss…that angry bee moved within (or completely out of) the glass before the gun went bang. Did you see it? Did you try to fix it, or did you run with it?

In my handgun classes I call my shots even if they land INSIDE the black from 25 yards in front of my students and its not magic, its EASY. I just ask myself a simple question, where was my sight/dot when the gun went bang?

Top 5 Best Guns For Women

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by Sarah Jacobs

Whether it is for competition or for self-defense, women can also own a licensed gun like any other man could. Women can also be expected to target and shoot like any man could. However, there are many considerations before anyone should settle with a gun of choice. This goes for both men and women gun enthusiasts.

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Can You Shoot Better Than A Cop?

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From Tamara Keel

Can You Shoot Better Than A Cop?

He cites a published study that “…broke down the shooters into three classifications: expert, intermediate, and novice. Experts had either finished the academy shooting course or had been trained in the military while intermediates had no formal academy training but had shot before in either recreational settings or had military rifle training. Finally, the novices were just that. Many of them had never even held a gun in their lives.”

You can see the problem already, right? Military handgun training, outside of a handful of job descriptions, is laughable. The handgun training from a typical LE academy is better than that, but still unlikely to turn out any pistol wizards, either.

Then comes the part that doesn’t automatically follow, which is that us non-po-po shoot better than that. Well, we probably do… assuming we’re an active competitive shooter and/or have had some formal training ourselves.

But as far as the general run of the mill shooting public? I go to the public shooting range. A lot. I see how the general shooting public shoots. It’s not very well. The average shooter at a public range finds the 7 ring of a B-27 at seven yards to be a less than clout shot.

I am not a very good shooter. I’m the special ed student at gun school. When I walk the prize table at a match, I find myself wondering if the tablecloth is not the most valuable thing left on the table, since I already have a Bore Snake and a three ounce bottle of CLP. But when I go to the public range of a weekend? I’m almost always a veritable ninja compared to the shooters on my right and left.

The average shooter is never presented with an opportunity to find out how bad they are, because things like scores and timers are foreign to their experience. It is possible to go to the range monthly for years and years and never see any meaningful improvement because it’s hard to improve that which you do not measure. There’s a lot of Dunning-Kruger in the shooting world.

It’s worth noting that Dr. Dunning’s solution to the cognitive bias experienced by novices that bears his name is to do exactly what Tamara Keel recommends here.

M1 Garand History

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The M1 is a legendary American rifle. John Garand, a Canadian born weapon designer, created the M1 Garand. Soon, it became a staple of the American military.  It was one of the most widely used rifles, outside of a properly equipped AR-15.

The M1 Garand became a favorite of the troops that wielded it. At the time, it was the premier battle rifle in World War II, and far better than the rifles the Axis powers carried. The M1 allowed the United States to adopt a maneuver-based warfare system utilizing fire and maneuvers to conquer the German and Japanese forces.

The M1 Garand is still used by many firearms enthusiasts today, and you can still find working versions being used by hunters and recreational shooters across the United States.

GunBacker has a nicely-written history on this historic rifle:
https://www.gunbacker.com/m1-garand/

Think, Don’t Plink

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https://www.tacticalperformancecenter.com/blogs/the-dump-pouch/110306694-designing-a-practice

One of our mottos here at the Tactical Performance Center is “think don’t plink.” More than just a catchy phrase, there is deep wisdom in this statement: each round you fire should have a purpose.

I have lived by this motto and every shot I have fired, of my own ammo, in the last eight years has had one of three purposes:

Does the gun work?
Did my outcome match my intent?
Did I follow the process I wanted to follow to release this shot?

Unfortunately, this approach is rarely seen at the range. Too often I see shooters simply turning money into noise without gaining performance improvement. Occasionally I’ll even have a shooter tell me something like “Yeah, great practice. 1,000 rounds down range.” They grow quiet though when I respond with “Great! Did you get 200 bucks of improvement?”

As shooting becomes more expensive and the reasons we shoot–whether it be training to defend our life, protect the public, or win a match–have become more pressing, we owe it to ourselves, and those we protect, to be as good as we can be.

The good news is that improving our performance doesn’t mean that we need to spend more money on ammo or even more time at the range. We just need to build better practices!

At our TPC boot camps, we do just this. While we focus on principles and fundamentals for world class shooting, these concepts are new to most and unlikely to stick after just three days of instruction. For that reason, we also teach our students how to design practices that lock in those fundamentals and improve the speed and consistency with which they can deliver shots.

Here is how we work with our students to develop a practice:

START WITH THE FUNDAMENTALS

Start and end with the fundamentals of grip, stance, isolating the trigger, letting recoil happen, calling shots, and active follow through. If these are not holding, stop and work on just them. If you have 200 rounds, use a large percent of them here.

ONLY DO WHAT YOU HAVE TO DO WITH LIVE FIRE

You can perfect a reload with very little live fire but a lot of dry practice. We can hone technique dry and then measure or experiment live.

THINK SMALL, LOOK SMALL

I recently had a fellow instructor who was visually leaving targets early in a rush to get to the next target. This was causing misses and hurting his competition performance. Together we designed an *exercise using dots focused on follow thru. He did this exercise with 100 rounds a day, over two days. At his next performance at a large competition he found that his problem was solved.

*Note that we designed an “exercise”, not a drill. We want to improve a fundamental skill that we can reuse elsewhere, purposefully, not just as a series of sequences where we can fool ourselves with improvement by memorizing a sequence of actions.

END WITH THE FUNDAMENTALS

We used this process to design a 200-round practice with a group of students at a recent boot camp. Our “look small” goal was to improve our ability to isolate the trigger, including under speed stress. The class had wisely deduced that a lot of low hanging fruit in improving their performance could be found in the trigger pull.

Here is what our practice looked like:

  • 75 dots, dry, focusing on a different element of the shooting cycle on each row
  • 75 dots, live, focusing on isolating the trigger on each dot (3 shots per dot)
  • 40 alpha exercise (from the Army Marksmanship Unit Action Shooting team)
  • ½ USPSA metric target, at 15 yards (this simulates a 30 yard shot)
  • 40 shots, in 5 shot strings, as fast as the sights present what you need to see
  • Strong focus on isolating the trigger
  • 75 dots, live, focusing on isolating the trigger on each dot (3 shots per dot)
  • 75 dots, dry, focusing on isolating the trigger on each dot and active follow through

This practice took 190 rounds and an hour and a half to complete. Every person on the line got 20+ Alphas, with some in the high 30’s. When I asked them “was that worth 1.5 hours and 20 bucks in ammo?” the universal answer was that it was the best experience shooting, in terms of improvement, they’d ever had.

Now imagine doing that twice a week. How good would you get with $40 a week in ammo and three hours of your time?

I encourage you to bring PURPOSE and PLANNING to your practices. You will improve at a dramatic rate and the gains will be more permanent.

Think, don’t plink!

Competitive Shooting: Not Just a Game

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Field Notes Ep. 13, Competitive Shooting with Robert Vogel, Not Just a Game.

It’s worth noting that Mr. Vogel won his first national championship using the same firearm he carried on duty as a law enforcement officer.

More from Robert Vogel:
https://firearmusernetwork.com/tag/robert-vogel/

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