First Impressions: MPA BA Competition Chassis

First Impression: MPA BA Competition Chassis

If you are in the market for a new stock or chassis system for your rifle there are a lot of choices. Both traditional stocks and chassis systems both have a lot to offer. Much like selecting a rifle or a cartridge to shoot it has a lot to do with what your intended use is. I have always had a hard time getting what I wanted in a stock/chassis system. I have always favored the vertical grip of a traditional stock. At the same time I have always liked the additional features most chassis systems come with. MPA was able to bring the best of both worlds to one system.

A sum of all of its parts

The MPA BA Competition Chassis arrived to me finished in Burnt Bronze Cerakote with a barrel channel cut to accept up to MTU contour barrel as ordered. What makes MPA unique is that they as a company are constantly evolving. During the time that I placed my order to the time that I received my chassis there were 2 major changes that were added. The RAT system and the lug lock. So what features makes this chassis stand out?

Rotating barricade stop
MPA
Rotating Barricade stop

This is a user adjustable system that allows you to “wedge” the for end of your rifle around an obstacle like a barricade. Should you choose to run a bag on your rifle it can be easily removed. There are also additional accessories that work with the barricade stop system.

MPA
Barricade stop system

For more information you can click here.

Trinity rail system

Designed to help get the bipod closer to the magwell the trinity rail is another user adjustable and removable system designed by MPA. It allows you to add/remove or adjust the location of the trinity rail to relocate your bipod for stage dependant shooting like when shooting off of tires or barrels.

MPA
Trinity Rail System

 

MPA
Trinity Rail System installed

For more information on the trinity rail click here.

Modified magwell “ryan castle” magwell cut

The modified magwell allows you to side load the magazine in tighter positions. The Competition Chassis accepts AICS style magazines.

MPA
“Ryan Castle” magwell cut
Bag rider AttachmeNt

Using a rear bag with some stocks or chassis systems can often time be a pain. MPA realized that shooting off a bag could be improved. They deleted their monopod system and replaced it with the bag rider attachment. This helps with consistent rear bag placement and recoil management when shooting from a rear bag.

MPA
Bag Rider Attachment
The Evg

One of my favorite parts about this chassis is the EVG. I love the fact that I can have a vertical grip on a chassis system. It fits like a glove, indexes my trigger finger perfectly and consistently on the trigger, and has a nice rough texture to help with gripping when things get sweaty and wet. Even better yet it will work with anything that accepts a standard A2 style grip.

MPA
EVG

Additional systems
MPA
Don’t Sue!

The MPA Competition Chassis also comes with the RAT System. I will be ordering the necessary parts to use this system once my new bipod gets here. For more information you can check out the MPA site here. You can also read up on all the additional features the Competition Chassis comes with on their website.

A suggestion to masterpeice arms

So far I love the competition chassis system. When I started out this article I talked about how the MPA competition Chassis is a sum of all of its parts. I feel this is also true of any company or business out there. Masterpeice Arms produced an excellent product that was well worth the wait. With that being said I feel as though their customer service is sub par.

When I ordered my chassis I was quoted 8 to 12 weeks from time of order until time of delivery. That seemed fair, they also gave an option to pay only 20% and pay the rest at completion so I waited my 12 weeks. All said and done I got the chassis at a few days past 15 weeks from the day I placed my order.

My experience reaching out to MPA

I had sent emails and even called general customer service. When I did manage to get hold of MPA I was told it should be done next week only to wait another week after that. Personally I found their customer service to be a little hard to get a hold of. Emails didn’t always get returned in a timely fashion or at all. I received a phone call from MPA. Whom ever made that phone call did not leave a message. When I called back no one was able to tell me who called or why.

When someone is spending money with you they see value enough to do so. I can honestly say that some of that value was lost in our transaction. As someone who’s income heavily relies on customer satisfaction and has a great track record of high customer satisfaction scores in my industry  I would like to make a few suggestions to the folks at Masterpeice Arms, I hope you take them to heart.

What can you do to improve?

1. Under promise and over deliver. Right now you have it backwards. I understand that 2 design changes were made and that they required retooling to get those put into production that push back production times. Update your wait times to be at a bare minimum realistic. I would have still placed the order if you told me it would take 12 to 16 weeks. I just placed an order for a barrel that quoted me 6 to 8 months. Time is not an issue as long as it is realistic. Under promise and over deliver.

2. Keep in touch with your customers and keep them updated. I wasn’t upset that my chassis took 15 weeks. I was upset that I didn’t get a single email or call from you at or prior to 12 weeks explaining why my chassis wasn’t done at 12 weeks like you told me when I placed my order. This is a realistic request from a customer, this is something you should already be doing and are not. It doesn’t even have to be a personal email to every single person who has an order in either.

If you are not using a customer relationship management tool (CRM) that can send out mass emails updating those with orders that are running behind production I would suggest looking into it. Not only will it keep your customers happy, it will also make the business side of your life easier. It will also allow you to keep notes on customer contacts. Meaning that you can easily find out who called a customer and why if they didn’t leave a message.

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Review: Sarge’s Shooting Bags

Sarge's

Sarge’s Shooting Bags Review

Shooting bags are becoming more and more popular tools in the long-range shooting community. Most long-range shooters have used a rear bag in some capacity. What is formally known as a sand bag has been adapted to fill more than the role of just a rear bag. Shooting bags are used in competition shooting like the Precision Rifle Series and other practical precision matches. They help aid in positional shooting and come in many shapes and sizes. Everyone has their favorite company to produce bags. After asking for some recommendations I choose to go with Sarge’s Shooting Bags. Sarge’s is a veteran owned and operated company and makes a great product at an affordable price.

I ordered The MOAB, The Goody Bag, The Wild Bill, and The Blockhead. It is worth noting that Sarge’s offers a discounted price if you order a combo. For example I ordered the Big Bag Combo. It contained the MOAB, Goody Bag, and Wild Bill. If ordered individually the total cost of the package would be $199 dollars, however the combo sells for $166. A savings of $30.

Sarge’s speed straps

Unlike other bags on the market Sarge’s bags have a unique feature that sets them apart from the rest. The Sarge’s Speed Strap allows for easy and quick one-handed adjustments to tighten or loosen the strap. This helps when using the bag as a “pillow” on one of your arms to help fill space and make a stable position. It also makes attaching the bag to your rifle very easy and hassle free. All you have to do is pull the shock cord at either end of the speed strap to tighten. Sarge'sSarge's

The MOAB 

The Mother of All Bags is Sarge’s second largest bag. Measuring 10″x8″x6″ the MOAB has a lot of uses. It can be used with an AR-15 with a 30 round magazine in the prone. It also works great for filling large voids by adding stability in positional shooting. The MOAB comes standard with a lightweight poly fill that breaks in nicely. Even with its large size the fill keeps the weight down and it is very comfortable to use when strapped to your arm.Featuring two of Sarge’s Speed Straps it is very easy to use and adjust. It also has a loop for attaching a strap should you want to run with the bag attached to your person or rifle. The MOAB has an MSRP of $78.

Sarge's

 

The Goody Bag 

Measuring in at 10″x8″x4″ the Goody Bag is Sarge’s 3rd largest bag produced. That Goody Bag has a lot of uses from a front bag for your rifle, a rear bag while shooting in the prone, or used to fill gaps in your position by attaching to your arm and using as a “pillow” The Goody Bag features two of Sarge’s Speed Straps and also has a loop for attaching the bag to your person or rifle. Just like The MOAB The Goody Bag also comes with a lightweight poly fill. Out of the 4 Sarge’s bags that I own The Goody Bag is by far my preferred bag to run on the front of my rifle. I have used it to help create a more solid position as well as using it to “wedge” the rifle on a barricade. The Goody Bag has an MSRP of $66. Sarge'sSarge's

 

The Wild Bill

The Wild Bill measures in at 8″x5″x4″. It has one Sarge’s Speed Strap. It makes for a great rear bag and can also be used as a front bag if needed. The Wild Bill can be had with the lightweight poly fill or a heavy plastic resin. I choose the lightweight poly fill, but have considered ordering another with the heavy plastic resin fill. When I bought my Sarge’s bags I also got the Blockhead expecting that to be my dedicated rear bag. After using both The Blockhead and The Wild Bill I found that I can use the Wild Bill as a positional bag as well as on the front of my rifle in a pinch if necessary making it much more versatile. The Wild Bill has an MSRP of  $55.Sarge's

The Blockhead

The Blockhead measures in at 6″x5″x4″. Best for use as a dedicated rear bag The Blockhead does not have a Sarge’s Speed Strap. Instead it has an adjustable Velcro strap to keep the bag attached to your hand while using it as a rear bag. You can get the Blockhead in either lightweight poly fill or the heavier plastic resin. I choose the lightweight poly fill. Offering 3 different heights to choose from when used as a rear bag it is very flexible.

Out of all 4 of my Sarge’s bags The Blockhead sees the least amount of use. I like to run a bag attached to the butt-stock of my rifle should I need a rear bag and I purchased the Blockhead for this purpose, however I found that I actually prefer to run The Wild Bill for this application instead. Your Mileage may very. The Blockhead has an MSRP of $34.00.Sarge's

 

 

Top notch quality

All four of the bags I ordered came to me right inline with the time-table promised. The materials used and the craftsmanship exceeded my expectations. Like all new bags they had to be broken in, which according to a very reliable source is best done by parking your vehicle on the bags to help speed up the process. After getting over my initial fear of destroying the bags I did just that and they have broken in nicely. I am very impressed with the quality of the bags and how much of a difference they can make in getting a stable position when shooting off a barricade. If you are looking for new bags I would absolutely recommend Sarge’s Shooting Bags!

Sarge's

Sarge's
Brand New Out of The Box
Sarge's
After a few trips of breaking them in

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Review The Ergo Roller Handle

Review: Inline Fabrications Ergo Roller Handle

Today we are going to be talking about the Inline Fabrications ergo roller handle. The handle I was sent was for the Dillon XL650. However, they make them for all the major brands of presses.

The handle came shipped in a USPS flat rate box. It was packaged well and came with very easy to follow instructions. The first thing I noticed when looking at the lever and roller handle was how heavy-duty the construction was.

Assembly is very easy all you need is a 5/32nd hex key to screw the roller handle into the lever. You will want to use blue Loctite on the threads to ensure that it won’t work its way lose.

The lever seems to fit better in the press than the Dillon handle did. The Inline Fabrication handle also has a nice rubber cover to protect the threads after you get it installed.

So now that I have the ergo roller handle installed it’s time to try it out. The first thing I did was use it to trim about 1000 .223 cases. All I can say is that it’s amazing!!! I have always loved the XL 650 and this makes it so much better. Normally after doing that much work on the 650, I can feel it from my hand rubbing on the ball on the standard Dillon handle but not with the Ergo Roller handle I feel like I could load another 10,000 rounds with no issues at all.

If you own any reloading press this is a MUST have upgrade! It is a very simple fix to a very common problem. Only time will tell but from the quality of the product I am very confident that the roller handle will be a good upgrade for quite some time to come.

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Review: Magnetospeed M-Series Grip system

Magnetospeed

M-SERIES GRIP SYSTEM

Besides the Magnetospeed V3, Magnetospeed was also kind enough to send me their grip system to test. So far I absolutely love the grip. I have it installed on an AR-10 chambered in 6.5 Creedmoor currently. I find it extremely comfortable and really like the texture of the grip. Another very nice thing with the grip is it comes with a long allen key to install the grip screw. The grip is also designed with the grip screw held in place inside the grip with a plug. This sit one of the easiest grips I have ever installed on any AR!

Storage box

The grip also comes with a small storage box that fits into the grip. It is spring-loaded with a button on the bottom. When you push the button you release the dry box so it’s easy to get out. One thing I have noticed is that about ¾ of the time when you eject it, it removes the lid to the box. I’m not sure if this intentional or not. Now don’t get me wrong, it’s not a big deal as the dry box stays about half way in the grip so nothing spills out of it but you have to fish around with your fingers to get the lid out.

MiniLight

Next, as part of the M-Series Grip system we have the MiniLight. It is a very small but bright little flashlight. It runs off of 1 CR123 battery which is included. The light is very simple to operate with two buttons. A large gray button that turns on the main light with a simple on/off function. There is also a smaller red button that activates two red LED bulbs giving you red light.Each button will override the other so if you have the red light on and need the bright white light all you have to do is hit the button and it turns on the white light and automatically turns off the red and vice verse.

The light comes with two ways to mount it, one being a small hat clip that would be good if you need to make a repair to your rifle at night or need some hands free light. I would not keep it on my hat unless I’m using it at the time because it’s held to the clip by a magnet that will let the light fall with any quick head movement. I would like to see a little bit more robust attachment for the light to your hat.

Hat attachment

1913 quick attach

The other way to mount the light is with a 1913 rail adapter this would be great as a backup light it’s very fast to mount if you have the adapter on your rail just eject it from the grip and stick it to the magnets in the adapter. Keep in mind I would not recommend this as a primary weapon light due to the fact that if the light is bumped or you drop your rifle it WILL fall off. I have tested it with a lot of fast movement that you would expect in a dynamic environment and as long as nothing touches the light or rifle it has stayed on without any issues. Unfortunately, it doesn’t take much of a bump to knock the light of. I do think this would be a perfect backup light and that seems to be exactly what it was designed for.

Minimag

The last thing that they sent me was the MiniMAG. Like the dry box and MiniLight, it fits in the grip. The MiniMAG is a three round magazine. Designed for .223/5.56 and 300blk. This is a very different concept, and to be honest, I can’t think of any practical application for it. I mean it works exactly as advertised. I just can’t think of any situation that isn’t the last fight in an action movie that I would need three extra rounds stored in the grip of my rifle. If you can think of a good use for this magazine please let me know in the comments.

They also make a monopod for the grip that I would love to get my hands on to test but so far have been able to.

Overall I really like the grip and the storage and would definitely recommend the grip to anyone that is thinking about getting it. I think Magnetospeed is trying to be very innovative when it comes to this grip I like the dry box and think the flashlight definitely has a lot of potential, but could use a few improvements that I mentioned above. Now, I really think they missed the mark with the MiniMAG unless I am missing something.

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Review: Magnetospeed V3

Magnetospeed

MagnetosPEed v3 review

Having good data is one of the most important aspects of both long-range shooting and reloading. The Magnetospeed V3 has everything you need to get all of the information needed for your data book and load development and it is affordable as well.

Packaging

I received my Magnetospeed V3 to test and evaluate. It came in a nice case reminiscent of a hard plastic pistol case. It has foam cut for each part that comes with the V3 and seems to hold everything securely.

Attachments

The “bayonet” attaches to your barrel and comes with multiple sized barrel attachments to use with different diameter barrels as well as a square aluminum rod that you use as a guide to get the correct spacing.

monitor

The monitor that it comes with is simple to use and with the provided cables either a six-foot standard or a four-foot retractable cable it sits right next to you as you shoot so you can see the speed of each shot without having to get up between shots.

The Magnetospeed also comes with a microSD card and SD card adapter so that you can use to save your shot data to your computer if you want to keep a digital log.

Rifle attachment

I must say I have always been very sceptical of the Magnetospeed not because I didn’t trust the data but because of changing point of impact and effecting grouping. I was pleasantly surprised that I was wrong to worry about as neither aspect was effected. It was also very refreshing not to get error codes because of clouds passing overhead or changing light conditions.

It’s also nice not to have to go down range while you set up the Magnetospeed. It is also a lot less work than setting up a traditional chronograph. Overall I was very impressed with the V3 especially going into the review expecting different results. However after multiple range trips I only had one error code and i was unable to duplicate it. I would highly recommend the Magnetospeed V3 to anyone who want to get accurate load data easily.

For more information on the Magnetospeed V3 checkout their website here. MSRP is $380 and can often be found for less.

 

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Review: Randys EDC

EDC

Alright this is a little bit different then what we normally do but it’s a good topic and I can do a few mini reviews at the same time. So what is EDC? Well if you haven’t seen it referred to as EDC before it stands for Every Day Carry or what you always have on you.

 

 

As you can see I carry a decent amount of stuff. It’s not as bad as it looks and probably not much more than the average person has on them at any one time.

EDC- Keys

First thing that I always have on me just like almost everyone else are my keys. Nothing out of the ordinary with the exception of the Gerber shard. This little guy comes in handy all the time because it’s always on me. It has a mini prybar, 2 sizes of flathead screwdrivers, a Phillips screwdriver and a bottle opener on it. I have been really surprised how often I find myself using it. The best part about it is that it’s only $5 on amazon. I highly recommend going and picking one up.

 

Edc- Flashlight

Next is the 5.11 EDC flashlight I love the size and shape of this flashlight. It has got a somewhat rectangular shape as opposed to the round of most flashlights so it ends up being the same basic size and shape of a small folding pocket knife. It makes it feel very natural to carry if you are used to carrying a pocket knife on a clip. I carry it next to my pocket knife and can’t even feel that I have it on.

It’s a very simple design using 2 AAA batteries and a simple on/off with only one brightness setting. I find this ideal so that I’m not messing with settings and I always know what will happen when I turn it on. If you have been thinking about adding a flashlight to your EDC for $21.00 the 5.11 EDC is hard to beat. And you can get them in Black or FDE.

Edc- blade

On to my Gerber pocket knife there really isn’t too much to say here I have been carrying this knife for years and can’t remember what model it is it’s a Gerber spring assisted opening tanto half serrated blade and has never let me down.

Edc- PISTOL

Well as you know if you have been reading my other articles I was never a big Glock fan until a friend got a Glock 43 and gen 4 19. I really ended up liking the gen4 Glocks and ended up getting a Glock 32 and putting a Ghost 3.5lb trigger kit in it that has become my EDC gun. If you are not familiar with the Glock 32 it’s the same size as a Glock 19 and 23 but is chambered in .357 Sig.

Why .357 sig?

Now you might ask why I went with a .357 sig instead of a 9mm when it seems like lots of places on the internet would have you believe that 9mm is the perfect carry round. Well the biggest reason for my decision is how well .357 sig defeats barriers plain and simple I do not want to sacrifice 2 rounds over a 9mm Glock 19 but I am willing to make that sacrifice and I still have 13+1 capacity  so nothing to complain about, but if you ever have to shoot through a windshield or some other barrier you will be glad you have the .357 sig, and since I spend a lot of time driving that’s an important factor for me when picking a caliber.

Finding the best carry gun/caliber

Don’t get me wrong I am in no way knocking a 9mm, I carried a 9mm for many years including overseas and it has never let me down and I wouldn’t ever feel undergunned with it, but for my needs I feel the .357 Sig was a better choice. I also don’t really like to make recommendations on the best gun to carry. I think that’s a very individual choice and that you need to get out and try several different pistols and see what feels the most comfortable for you and that you can shoot the best. Caliber selection is what you feel comfortable with carrying but the truth is no matter what you carry if you have to use your pistol the bad guy won’t be able to tell what caliber he was hit with, shot placement is the key.

So there you have it that’s what I have for my EDC. I didn’t go into my phone or wallet because everyone already has a phone and wallet and let’s face it this is a gun blog not a tech blog so I doubt you came he to learn about smart phones. What do you carry? We would love to see your answers in the comments.

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Review: CMC Triggers

CMC

Cmc drop in triggers

I spoke with Jack Biegel the president of CMC triggers last week via email and he was kind enough to send me their two most popular triggers, a 91503(1-Stage Flat 3-1/2) & a 92504(2-Stage Flat 2-2) to test and evaluate. Shipping was very fast, I was given a tracking number and I had the triggers three days later. When the triggers arrived they were packaged very well and came with some nice CMC Swag.
CMC

So what makes CMC triggers different? Well they offer a direct drop in improvement or upgrade to a factory trigger. Installation is simple and uncomplicated. The old trigger comes out and the new CMC trigger unit drops right in. No gunsmith and no headache.

Cmc 2 stage flat face trigger install

After the triggers arrived, I got right to work installing them. First, I installed the two stage trigger in my precision 6.5 grendel AR. The instructions were very well written and easy for anyone to follow. It took about 5 minutes to swap the CMC trigger into the Grendel. I dry fired the trigger a few times after the install to ensure that it functioned properly. From the first dry firing I was in love with the two stage trigger. It was extremely smooth on the first stage and the second stage broke nice and crisp.

Cmc 1 stage flat faced trigger install

Next, I pulled one of my AR carbines out to put the single stage trigger in. The installation was exactly the same with the single stage as it was with the two stage and again took less than 5 minuets to install. I again dry fired the trigger a few times to ensure proper function. This is exactly what a carbine trigger should feel like. There is zero movement in the single stage trigger as soon as it gets to 3.5lbs on the trigger it will fire and the reset is extremely short and fast.

 

Now that I had the triggers installed I was excited to be able to get to the range and test them. I loaded 500 rounds of .223 and 150 6.5 grendel to take to the range and put them through their paces. The next morning I woke up, loaded the car, and headed out to the range.

Cmc 2 stage trigger range time- long-range

When I got to the range, I went to the long-range first to test out the two stage trigger. I started off slow working my way out from 300 yards to 760 yards on steel targets. The two stage trigger was a dream to shoot and I fired about 100 rounds with zero issues.

Then it was time to really challenge the trigger. So I took a handful of damp sand and opened the rifle up and dropped it directly over the trigger and shot another 10 rounds with no change to the way the trigger felt.

 

I thought, ok this is a good sign let see what it will take to make it fail. So I took another bigger handful of dirt and added it directly into the trigger again.

As you can see that is more dirt than anyone could ever get into the trigger under field or competition conditions. To my pleasant surprise the only thing that happened was that I could feel a little grit in the trigger and had to pull the trigger a little harder the first couple of shots. Then it was back to shooting like normal with only feeling a little grit in the trigger.

 

This was my first time shooting a flat trigger. I have been wanting to try one but was on the fence about them, not wanting to spend a couple of hundred dollars on something that I didn’t know if I would like. Now I can definitely tell you I am a convert to flat triggers. I can see all of my rifles eventually ending up with them. The best way to describe it, they have a more comfortable and natural feel to them than the standard curved triggers.

 

Cmc 1 stage trigger range time 16″ carbine

Now to the single stage trigger in my 16” bushmaster carbine. Now this was my 1st AR and the only one I own that I didn’t build myself. Well sort of, since now I have replaced almost everything on it at this point besides the barrel and receiver set.

So first I started off fairly simple just shooting some targets offhand at 200 yards. As soon as I started shooting I could feel the difference that the CMC trigger made. Now keep in mind, I have over 10,000 rounds through this rifle and it feels like an extension of my arm, but with the CMC trigger it’s like it became a part of my arm. The trigger made it so much nicer to shoot.

Next, I tried a few mag dumps to see how the CMC trigger holds up to rapid fire. I put 7 magazines through it as fast as I could pull the trigger. With the CMC triggers short reset and 3.5lb pull it was a lot faster than the factory trigger. There was no issue firing that fast and the trigger felt perfect. After the rapid fire test I started shooting for accuracy again and was able to get out to 500 yards with ease.

Now came the time to really put the single stage trigger to the test. I broke open the rifle and put a big handful of dry sand directly into the trigger

I was really trying to make the trigger fail with the sand but it refused to fail. Now, I did have to pull a little harder the first couple of shots but after 4 or 5 shots it was almost back to normal. After 10 shots you would never know I had poured sand into the trigger.

My overall impression of both of the CMC triggers is that they are a great investment and will make shooting an AR more effective and more fun. Weather you have a cheap $500 basic AR or a custom build, a CMC trigger is the first upgrade I would recommend and probably the one thing that will make the biggest difference in accuracy .

The 2-stage triggers have an MSRP of $239.99 and the single stage has an MSRP of $195.99. In my opinion, they are worth a lot more for the performance you get, but all their products are made in the US.

Now to clean them

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Review: Ghost Inc Trigger

Ghost

 

I have never been a fan of Glocks. For years I have shot friends Gen 2 and Gen 3 Glocks. I owned a Gen 2 Glock 17 some years ago. I have never cared for how they felt in my hand or shot. Knowing that they make a solid product I wished that they felt better but choose to carry a Sig 239 instead. I recently had a friend purchase a Glock 43 and a Glock 19 Gen 4. I went with him to the range and really liked the way the Glock 19 Gen 4 felt and shot. Fast forward about a month and I find a good deal on a Glock 32 Gen 4. Although I liked the feel of the Gen 4 Glocks I have never been a fan of the trigger.

The ghost Inc trigger

The next day I head to my local gun shop. When I get there I see some trigger kits from Ghost Inc. and start talking to the owner of the shop about them. He has a pistol that they had done some custom work on that also had the Ghost Inc. trigger in it. After trying it out I was impressed. It felt much better than the factory trigger. I decided to get the GHO- EDGETK. It included a ghost edge 3.5lb trigger bar, 6lb and 4lb firing pin springs, and a 6lb trigger spring . It also included a reduced power firing pin safety plunger spring. I choose the 4 lb firing pin spring. The owner offered to install it for me free of charge.Ghost

Ghost

Ghost trigger: Range time

On sunday I took the Glock out to the range with a few hundred rounds of ammo and the new Ghost trigger kit installed. I was impressed that my Glock shot as well as my Sig 229. The trigger system was 100% reliable with FMJ and HP rounds. Shooing the Glock 32 was a dream with the kit installed. It’s much smoother and breaks more cleanly than the stock trigger.

It is worth noting that I did not have a single failure to fire due to a light primer strike with multiple types and brands of ammunition. The reset is much smoother and the wall much crisper. The pistol shot better and addressed the issues that I have personally had with the factory Glock trigger. To anyone who is interested in upgrading their trigger with duty or edc in mind, I recommend trying out the Ghost Trigger.

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Review: Overview-BallisticsArc

BallisticsArc

Yesterday I received my GeoBallistics WeatherFlow WEATHERmeter . It’s a new product that sticks to the budget friendly side of measuring important environmental data. It will measure wind speed, temperature, barometric pressure, and humidity. The GeoBallistic WeatherFlow WEATHERmeter uses a software called BallisticsArc that is available for both android and apple users. Today I want to give a brief overview of the BallisticsArc app as it uses all of the data from the WeatherFlow WEATHERmeter to complete an environmentally correct firing solution.

BallisticsArc Rifle Page

The first page you are brought to when you open up the BallisticsArc app is the Rifle page. This is where you are going to input the information about your rifle and ammunition. As with any ballistic program make sure to check your work. Bad data in will result in bad data out. BallisticsArc

If you are using the free version of the app you will not be able to delete the sample rifle. I have the premium version and have deleted the sample rifle and have replaced it with my rifle data. The data it asks for is shown below. BallisticsArc

Skipping over the bullet information you will need to input information about your rifle. The sight height, zero range, twist rate, and velocity of the bullet are all required. If you have an elevation or windage offset you will also need to provide that information in the appropriate places.

Geoballistic Overlays

Next you will set up a list of parameters in the GeoBallistic Overlay section.

The first one is your vital size overlay. This will give you the maximum range in which you can hit a target of a specified size without dialing or using any hold overs.

Next you can set an energy threshold which will tell you when your bullet has reached a specified ft-lbs of energy. Both the vital size and energy threshold overlay are useful to hunters who want to know the maximum distance they can use their zero to take game without adjustment and the maximum distance they can ethically take a shot.

Finally we can program in a velocity thresholds. This threshold can be set at a set velocity and will normally be used to indicate that our bullet has gone transonic. This is generally regarded as the maximum effective range of the bullet however many experienced shooters can and will shoot past this distance.

Ballisticsarc Bullet Library and Manual bullet additional features

The first thing you will want to do is find the bullet that you are shooting from the rifle. If you intend to shoot multiple different bullets from the rifle you will need to make multiple profiles of the same rifle with the different bullets. The app uses the JBM bullet library and has a majority of bullets available, however if the bullet you intend to shoot is not listed you will need to manually add the bullet information. The bullet library allows you to select caliber and even bullet weight to narrow down your list of choices. BallisticsArc

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Bullet Weight Menu
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Manual Bullet information Screen

BallisticsArc Weather Page

The next page after all of your rifle and bullet data has been saved is the weather page. If you are not using their WeatherFlow WEATHERmeter to collect this data this is where you will manually input the environmental information. The app will use you local internet connection and the compass in your phone to find the information needed. You also have the ability to manually enter this information if you so choose.

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BallisticsArc Weather Page
Weather page: online weather

The bottom section of the weather page is the online weather section. If you click reload you will provided with a list of weather stations in your area. If you select a weather station it will then populate all the information from that site as well the time the data was last refreshed at the weather station. Once this has been done you can click either use button to use that information for a ballistic solution.

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Weather Station Selection

Below I selected the Penn Yan weather station and imported the data into the fields above.

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Penn Yan Weater Station Data
Weather Page: wind and atmosphere

You can also manually input the wind and atmospheric information if you choose. The blue compass next to the direction (deg) field will allow you to use your phones compass. In order to get a correct reading stand in the direction the wind is coming and point your phone into the wind and click the compass. Pictured below is the proper way to point your phone. This will also come into play when finding the shot angle and shot bearing in other features of the app.

BallisticsArc Hardware Page

If you have the GeoBallistics WeatherFlow WEATHERmeter you can bypass the weather page and get everything you need at your location. I will be covering the weather meter in part 2 of this review at a later date.

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Hardware Page

Once your weather meter is paired it will start giving you real-time data. With your device facing the direction of the wind and the WeatherFlow WEATHERmeter facing back first into the wind (front facing towards you) you can then hit take sample. I used a 5 second interval and below is the information I got. By selecting the use button the wind speed, direction, and density altitude will now be used in your firing solution.

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Live Data

BallisticsArc Chart Page

Once you have the environmental factors covered you can move on to getting a firing solution. Clicking the blue button next to the location line will use gps on your phone to get your location. Next you will point your phone at the target and click the angle button. This is best done behind the rifle while aiming at your target and will get you your shot angle. Next click the compass button to get your shot bearing. This will complete the data needed to apply the wind speed and direction into a firing solution.

Chart Page

In the chart above you will notice that there are 3 lines that are outlined. These are you GeoBallistics Overlays. The first gray overlay is the maximum distance for your vital size inputs. The red outline is you energy threshold. This is the distance at which your round is at the minimum ft-lbs of energy you input. Finally the yellow outline corresponds to your velocity threshold. This is the point where your bullet will drop below the velocity that you input.

BallisticsArc Map Page

Next up is a page that will allow you to find your location and map out targets or known points. Using a google earth overlay you can get a bird’s eye view of what is around you. You can drop a pin for your location as well as target. You can also connect the dots with a GeoBallistics Overlay showing you your preset thresholds. This information will give you the distance to your target and the corrections for them. It will also tell you the corrections and distances for each of your thresholds.

Map Page
Target Range
Max Vital Range
Energy Threshold
Velocity Threshold

BallisticsArc: Competition Page

One of the most attractive parts of the premium BallisticsArc app is the Competition page. You are able to set up stages and targets before hand. Before running the stage all you need to do is collect environmental information from the WeatherFlow WEATHERmeter and it will give you all the information you need to dial or hold for each target on that stage.

Competition Page

When entering in the targets you will follow the same steps as the chart page. This includes location, shot angle, shot bearing, and finally the specific range to the target you are loading. You can save range cards and access them at any time. Once all the information has been added and the environmental data input you will get a firing solution for each target.

Competition Mode: Firing Solutions

Stay tuned for part two of this review. I will be testing the GeoBallistics WeatherFlow WEATHERmeter against a weather station to ensure that it is giving accurate data. Part 3 will be coming soon after that where I run the firing solutions against the Applied Ballistics program to see which is more accurate with their firing solutions.

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Review: Lymen Digital Powder Scale (DPS) 5 First Look

Cailber

Well after years of use my Lymen DPS 2 finally died on me last week. Talk about a disappointment going out to load up some ammo and your trusty scale won’t turn on. So I did the only thing that I could and ordered the DPS 5. I did consider the DPS 6 but it was lacking a few features and the only advantage it had over the DPS 5 was size. Since I was replacing a DPS 2 on my bench size wasn’t an issue and I would rather have more memory to store different loads.

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Lymen Digtial Powder Scale 5

 

Lymen DPS 5 First Impressions

My first impression when it arrived was the new touchscreen display looks good and will be easier to keep clean. The button layout is almost identical to the DPS 2 but on an LCD display instead of actual buttons.

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Lymen DPS 5 Set Up

Setup was very simple! Just plug it in and put the powder hopper on then wait for it to warm up. This is one of my favorite improvements over the DPS 2`s 30 minute warm up time. The DPS 5 only takes 3 minutes to warm up. That’s 27 mintutes of time savings everytime you go to reload!

 

Lymen dps 5: speed

The speed that the powder drops also seems to be somewhat faster as well. However what really sets DPS 5 is the auto repeat function. While the DPS 2 would save your charge data you would have to manually start the process. With the DPS 5 auto repeat all you have to do is set the powder pan back on the scale and it will throw your next charge for you.

Lymen DPS 5: Accuracy

The scale is accurate to 1/10th of grain or 1/70,000th of a pound just like the DPS 2. I have noticed that the DPS 5 throws a lot more charges that are 1/10th of a grain off then the DPS 2 did. I am very disappointed about that but I suppose it comes with the faster powder throws. What I don’t understand is that the charges that are off are always 1/10th of a grain light so you would think it could add the extra 1/10th of a grain to give the correct charge.

Lymen dps 5: final thoughts

Overall I am very happy with the DPS 5 and think it is an improvement over the DPS 2. I would definitely recommend the DPS 5 to anyone looking for an automatic powder dispenser. However I would like to see them improve the accuracy of the powder throw.

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Stay tuned on our upcoming reviews on Sarge’s Shooting BagsRifles Only Bungee Sling, and The Pig Skin Barricade Pad from Shadow Tech, LLC.