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by Kenny Barlow
Co-Founder, Utah Gun Exchange
The outpouring of opposition from frustrated sportsmen and shooters saved our 5.56 ammo, right? Wrong.
According to ATF Director B. Todd Jones, the ATF move to ban 62 grain surplus 5.56 ammo isn’t over; it is just temporarily “suspended” with a possible plan for expansion.
During the Senate Appropriations Committee on Commerce, Justice, and Science meeting last Thursday (March 12, 2015), Director Jones thought he was just going to have another mundane funding increase request but instead found himself pressed by Committee Chair Senator Richard Shelby (R – AL) on his concerns of the ATF veering into the legislative realm.
From there the Director’s candid responses seemed all too telling.
As Jim Shepherd from The Shooting Wire (read original article here) reports:
[Senator] Shelby summarized the BATFE’s 2016 $1.3 billion budget request as a $60 million dollar increase over 2015, then flatly remarked: “I am interested in how the agency would use this increased funding, particularly in light of recent complaints from hunters and sportsmen who believe that ATF overstepped its authority by attempting to ban certain ammunition from recreational use.”
Shepherd reports that Jones told the Committee that the effort to ban green-tip wasn’t over:
…he made it very clear that the matter of military surplus ammunition in 5.56 was far from closed. In fact, the characterized the status as “suspended” not withdrawn.
But does it stop at green-tip? Far from it. Director Jones actually took aim at a much wider and far more popular group of ammo:
When Jones was questioned on what Shelby characterized as an “overreach” of authority by ATF earlier this week, he didn’t retreat. Instead, Jones used the opportunity to tell Sen. Shelby’s subcommittee that, because of the growth of AR-style pistols, he now considered “Any 5.56 round to be a challenge to officer safety.”
He then asked lawmakers to help in a review of the 1986 bill written to protect officers from armor-piercing (“cop killer”) rounds. That measure largely exempted 5.56 and a variety of other ammunition because it was used by target shooters and not in weapons readily used by criminals.
That’s right, folks, he said “any 5.56 round”. He doesn’t find just M855 ammo dangerous, he finds ALL 5.56 rounds to be the problem and then asked lawmakers to revisit the 5.56 armor piercing exemption. Removing the 5.56 exemption means a de facto ban on AR-Style rifles and pistols because sure you can buy the AR but what good is it if you can’t buy any 5.56 for it? And certainly while this may not withstand judicial scrutiny as “reasonable restrictions”, just like the interstate handgun purchase ban, I’d rather we nip this overreach in the bud now then down the road with drawn out court battles.
This battle for our 5.56 ammo is far, FAR from over. As Shepherd points out:
Jones candidly stated that – especially with the sales popularity of the AR-style pistol, he considered all 5.56 ammo a threat…
And this administration has shown little reluctance to take unilateral action-especially if it meant being able to make life even more difficult for law-abiding gun owners.
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We got our hands on one of the first “The Gun Box” handgun safes–the “Biometric” model. Watch the video below and listen to our interview of the inventor, via our podcast Gun Dudes Radio Podcast Episode #285
It weighs less than 7 lbs and its dimensions are approximately 11″ x 10″ x 3″. We were able to fit an FN-S 9mm, a legit PPK, and a North American Arms .22 mag all soundly inside of it.
Its main goals are: 1) to HELP prevent gun accidents by keeping little hands (kids) away from your gun in that old shoe box in the top of your closet, 2) it looks like a giant router from “Flight of the Navigator” so visually it doesn’t scream, “I’m a gun safe!” as it sits on your nightstand, AND 3) it still allows for quick access to a firearm should the need arise in the middle of the day or night. Check out our first impressions of The Gun Box in the video below and leave some comments if you feel so inclined–Yes, The Gun Box can be broken open–so can any other safe, please refer back to goal #1.
For a Limited time–FREE SHIPPING for Utah Gun Exchange users!
USE COUPON CODE: utgx
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
January 27, 2014
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Utah-based group aims to make it easier to buy and sell guns in Washington.
Olympia, Washington – A Utah group is making it easier for residents of Washington State to buy and sell guns. The group behind UtahGunExchange.com, an online classifieds site for private firearm sales, has launched an identical site for Washington residents. According to the site’s founders, Nick Moyes and Kenny Barlow, the goal of the classified site is to bring the Washington gun community together to help protect their 2nd Amendment rights.
“WashingtonGunExchange.com is about building community,” co-founder Nick Moyes said. “We saw what happened when outlets in Utah that were friendly to the gun community bowed to political pressure and we want to preempt this from happening in another gun friendly state.” Moyes is referring to anti-gun former NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg who has set his sites firmly on Washington State gun control efforts. Bloomberg’s “Mayors Against Illegal Guns” contributed $30,000 to a recent Washington gun control initiative.
“We wanted to provide a cooperative marketplace for Washington residents to find and offer firearms for sale.” Kenny Barlow said. “The more communication, coordination, and interaction the gun community has with each other, the harder it will be for adversaries to take away these rights.” In 2012, UtahGunExchange.com was launched within hours of the announcement that the local NBC affiliate had suspended private firearms sales through its classifieds service. UtahGunExchange.com received over 35 million page views in 2013.
Washington’s laws governing the private sales of firearms are identical to Utah. Washington residents can buy or sell firearms privately, as long as both the buyer and the seller are already legally allowed to own a firearm and both are residents of the State of Washington. However, the private sale of firearms across state lines requires that the firearm be transferred through a licensed dealer in the buyer’s state of residence.
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Last week, we had the opportunity to attend SHOT Show 2014 and “Buyer’s Day” out at the Boulder City Range.
Check out this video of a walk-through down a SINGLE aisle (and around a corner) to get an idea of the scope of this show.
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Streamlight Stylus Pro C4 Pen Light Review
I love flashlights, second only to firearms, and lately I’ve been looking for a new EDC (Every Day Carry) light. In the past I’ve carried the Surefire™ E2D Defender, and even bought the LED version (it is a tad longer than the original). Both are very bright and are great if you wear cargo pants with extra pockets due to their size or if you want your flashlight to double as a backup weapon with their strike face bezels. However, I wanted something smaller, that didn’t heat up, that runs on everyday accessible batteries, and is still relatively bright.
I already own two Streamlight™ weapon lights that are attached to my bedside pistols. (The 630 lumen monster–the Streamlight TLR-1 HL) I have been VERY pleased with them thus far, so when I saw an Amazon “Lightning Deal” for the Streamlight™ Stylus Pro Penlight with 4 ½ out of 5 stars reviews— I rolled the dice and bought two. If you plan to purchase one for yourself after reading this review, please support this site by doing so here: Black Silver Blue Red Green Orange Initial Impressions: They arrived promptly and I was glad to see that they came with two, AAA Energizer batteries, a belt loop nylon holster, and a spare button cap for the on/off switch. So far so good, as far as the price was concerned. Not sure what the spare button cap is for, because is identical to the installed cap, and I can’t say that I’ve ever worn through the tail cap of any of my other lights, so it’ll get thrown into that “random parts” drawer (black hole abyss), never to be found again in the event that I DO need it someday. I also like that there is no dirt or water access to the C4 “bulb” itself. You can’t open the housing around the bulb, which is a non-issue because the “bulb” will outlive me—in fact Streamlight™ guarantees it.
Streamlight™ stands behind these lights with a Limited Lifetime Warranty, promising that it will “be free from defects, including LED, for a lifetime of use.” What they won’t guarantee is the abuse I was about to put my silver version through though, heh heh. So minus abuse and batteries, the switches and electronics are warrantied for 2 years as long as I keep the proof of purchase—my online Amazon receipt should suffice. Now for the abuse…inspired by their list of Features: What does “IPX4 water-resistant” really mean? It means, that my silver Stylus Pro needed to go swimming. I’ll refer you to the video below so you can see its capabilities in the water for yourself, but the light held up fine. There were no water bubbles escaping from it when submerged, however when I opened up the tail cap, small beads of water did make it in there, likely due to my attempts to shake water OFF of the flashlight once I pulled it out of the water bucket. The instructions recommend keeping the o-rings and threads “lubricated with silicone grease”. I should probably reapply some now since it went swimming… Conclusion, it is “water resistant”, but clearly not “water proof” and Streamlight™ is wise to make this distinction clear in their list of features.
The next feature to test was the “unbreakable polycarbonate lens”. I didn’t feel like taking a tack hammer to the lens, but I did turn it on, throw it up in the air 9 feet or so, and let it drop onto my carpeted Man Cave floor MULTIPLE times and there was not hiccup at all. The light never shorted out and there is no dis-figuration to the housing or the lens. (The silver housing is ‘too purdy’ to purposely drop it onto pavement where it would obviously end up with scars.)
Lastly, I tested the “6.25 hour run time”. One of my biggest gripes with my Surefire lights, besides their bulk, was their limited run time on expensive CR123 batteries. Granted, they are putting out significantly more lumens (500), whereas this light only puts out “48 lumens” at its peak and it is certainly not a secondary weapon. Different purposes, different lights, I digress… The diminished light output followed the data in the graph above precisely, but then proceeded to beat the 6 hour 15 minute run-time mark by nearly a full hour! The light ran until 7hours 14 minutes! My Surefire™ E2D LED has a “low” setting that also puts out 5 lumens, so it’s not a terrible amount of light, but it’s not great. At the 6 hour mark I would say it was as bright as those handheld lights doctors use to test your pupils’ response, but for this light to last another hour at 5 lumens, isn’t too shabby. Now I need new batteries…
Final notes and conclusion: The tail cap is relatively difficult to compress to turn the light off/on. I think this by design so that as you’re carrying it in a pocket it doesn’t turn off/on accidentally (