Thank you Chris Lux and Government Training Institute for allowing us to crash your Sunday to review firearms, hearing protection and shooting benches…and shoot the heck out of various targets…and cars!
On Sunday, March 1st, Frances and I head to the Government Training Institute‘s facilities in Barnwell, South Carolina. (No, we are NOT going there for the Presidential Primary!) Chris Lux and the other folks at GTI have given us permission to bring a ton-of-stuff out to review on their ranges.
“What ‘ton-of-stuff’ is being lugged to GTI for reviews?”
Well we are bringing three rifles (1 each from Daniel Defense, H-S Precision and MG Arms), a pistol (also from Daniel Defense), a Tuffpak in which to transport all the firearms, a shooting bench from Royal Stukey, the brand new 4StableSticks fieldrest (for shooting from a sitting/kneeling position) and a set of Electronic Shooters Protection ‘STEALTH‘ ear plugs.
Of course, we also have the LabRadar chronograph, Kestrel 5700X Weather Meter with Applied Ballistics, Vortex Razor Spotting Scope and Vortex Fury Rangefinder/Binoculars that we have reviewed before. Oh, and we have been sent over 450 rounds of ammunition; most of the ammo was sent from Neal Emery of Hornady, but we also have reloads for the MG Arms rifle and some Federal cartridges for the pistol.
Our design is to ‘walk’ the rifles out to target distances of up to 700 yards. Cannot wait to shoot all of the firearms, and watch Frances do the same. I am also pumped to see how the firearms, Tuffpak, bench, fieldrest and ear protection perform.
Yes, you are correct. A magical weekend of shooting sh** is about to happen for the Arnolds!
Stay tuned for a ‘ton’ of review articles at TheTruthAboutGuns.com, complete with photographs and videos of each of the products being reviewed!
(Please excuse the plastic. There aren’t corpses, we’re just having some painting done in my trophy room/office.)
In January, at the Dallas Safari Club Convention, Frances and I had the opportunity to interview Jack Homa of Electronic Shooters Protection. ESP’s electronic ear plugs are at the top of the market. Recently, Jack sent me a pair of their STEALTH ear plugs. About a week ago, I used these when reviewing a Daniel Defense DDM4 PDW. I will be writing a full review for the STEALTHs after I use them for several more firearm reviews and an upcoming hunt for quail. As a part of the full review, we put together this short video describing the use, and utility, of these fantastic ear plugs!
Not a flattering picture of the photographer, but this is how I often have to position myself and my ‘subject’ when that subject is a long-gun. Those big lights to the right and left of the rifle are soft-boxes. You are likely to have seen these, if you’ve ever set foot in a professional photographer’s studio. No, I am NOT a professional photographer. But, I have asked professional photographers how I could improve my photography.
The professional’s answer, “No subject likes [looks good with] flash photography. So, use indirect light inside [soft-boxes or a window] or shoot your photos outside.”
My photographs have improved greatly since taking that advice to heart. Understand, this is not a reflection of my skill, but of professionals who were willing to mentor a beginner.
And, the results today? The Daniel Defense DD5 rifle, a bear skin and voila!
My latest book review, this one on Taylor’s African Rifles and Cartridges, just appeared. This is a text I return to over-and-over-again when researching rifles and cartridges for hunting in Africa, and elsewhere. I hope you too love this classic Africana!
Forgive my French, but this is a 10-shot group obtained with the Daniel Defense DDM4 PDW, using the Vortex SPARC AR Red Dot optic and Federal American Eagle ammunition – from 50-yards off of the Ultimate Leather fieldrest from 4StableStick!
This was the first time for me to shoot a PDW of any kind.
Like I said, Damn!!
“…if you properly respect what you are after, and shoot it cleanly and on the animal’s terrain, if you imprison in your mind all the wonder of the day from sky to smell to breeze to flowers – then you have not merely killed an animal. You have lent immortality to a beast you have killed because you loved him and wanted him forever so that you could always recapture the day. You could always remember how blue the sky was and how you sat on a high hill…” (Robert Ruark; Horn of the Hunter)
While I settled gently back into my chair, I checked my watch; it was eleven thirty. I was now convinced of my failure in this morning’s hunt for a buck. I figured that if there had been one nearby, he probably scented me, or heard me snoring, or saw me strip and re-dress. I was fairly dispirited, but now my concern shifted to the possibility of losing one of my few opportunities to collect a doe for the freezer. I listened for any movement, in order to take advantage of the next chance I got to carry the doe home. I was in this frame of mind when I heard a slight rustling to my left. I breathed a sigh of relief that the cover scent was again proving its worth, as the sound was coming from directly downwind. I slowly turned and stood to be able to get a good look over the intervening black berry and privet. I spotted the tannish gray head of a deer and gently brought my gun to the high skeet position in case the animal turned out to be the doe rather than the yearling. The deer form took shape as it cleared the brush. Instead of the doe or yearling, there stood a buck 17 yards away, its rut-swollen neck extended in the classic ‘sneak’ pose. I had been observing basket eight pointers since opening day, but this deer’s body was half again the size of those youngsters. He walked with the stiff-legged gate of the mature bucks shown on hunting programs. I saw three long tines on his left side as I began to raise my 7mm Remington Magnum to my shoulder. He continued to ease through, acting just like a buck would if he was investigating a hot doe. I then realized he was probably being reeled in by the combination of the Tink’s urine scent and the living, doe decoy. I had to aim high on his shoulder to shoot over the brush that now stood between us.
I have read of animals falling from under the shooter’s sights. Usually the writer is referring to elephants. However, no African big-game hunter has been more excited than I when this buck dropped at the report of my gun. Upon later inspection, I found that the 175 grain Nosler Partition had caught him in the spine. I chambered another round and waited, hardly noticing the doe and yearling now standing frozen 10 yards behind me, looking towards the spot where the buck had fallen. I heard a gentle rustling and then no sound at all came from where the buck had stood. I waited another minute, closed my rifle on an empty chamber, and carefully climbed down the ladder. As I stepped from the lowest rung, I saw that the doe and yearling had not moved. Now they were staring intently at me. The doe lifted her right front leg and stomped it sharply on the ground. I moved slowly along their front, but not until I was within feet of the yearling did they turn, raise their flags and spring into the brush.
I had to circle wide of the hedge that stood nearly as high as my head. As I rounded the corner of the obstruction, I spotted the form of my first Whitetail buck with more than 2 points to a side. He was “only” a seven pointer, but in my eyes he was magnificent. When weighed later, he tipped the scales at approximately 160 pounds on the hoof. I knelt down beside him and breathed a sigh and prayer of thanksgiving. How can one not be in awe of such a creation. I thought of the offerings given by Native Americans at the sight of their kills; offerings to their gods and to the slain animal, offerings that reflected their recognition that the taking of a life meant they would live. This reflects a different belief system to mine, but one that echos a proper respect for the life taken in order for memories to be borne in the hunter.