Friday, January 31, 2014

Optic Upgrades

Now comes the meat and potato of the upgrades... the optic. Simply put, you will want to select a well-known manufacturer for the optic you choose. The best fighting optics come in one of three categories: red-dot, variable-power scope, fixed-power scope.

Red Dot
'Nuff said.

The only other red dot I might consider would be a Trijicon RMR or a Trijicon RX01. 

The advantage is quick, two-eyes open shooting. Also, generally speaking, red dots are the lightest of the optics.

The disadvantage is long range. Red dots are generally only practical out to about 300 yards / meters. Though there are some out there that have successfully shot farther, I'd chalk that up the the rifleman more than the optic.

Variable-power scope
This is the largest category. In general, this scope will be "1x-4x" though there are some high quality variants. Bushnell, Nikon, Leupold, and others have quality scopes represented in this category. Even Trijicon has a version.

The advantage is that you can have "1x" - which lets the scope work like a red dot for two-eyes open shooting. With a twist of a dial, you can have 4x (or even 6x) magnification for long-range shots.

The disadvantage is weight. These scopes are the heaviest, but they are not as heavy as large hunting scopes.

Small, fixed-power scopes
'Nuff said.

The only alternative I'd even consider is an Elcan - which is a mighty fine scope. But they are not more rugged than an ACOG, some might say they are not as easy to use, and they are certainly not cheaper.

Seriously, if the $1000+ price tag frightens you, then look at one of the other two options: red dot, or variable power.

Quick detach mount
Mandatory, regardless of optic. Make sure it guarantees a return to zero.


Thursday, January 30, 2014

Free Float Upgrade

Major advantages to having a free float rail or tube:
1. Improved accuracy.
2. Being able to rest the gun and/or use a sling without shifting the POI.
3. Heat dissipation.
4. Weight - most FF quad rails are lighter than the non-FF versions.

Major considerations for selecting a free float rail or tube:
1. How thick / wide / tall is it?
I once had a YHM rail. It did the job, but was very heavy and very wide. I sold it for a more comfortable (read: slimmer, and lighter) LaRue. End of story.
2. How heavy is it?
3. How sturdy is it?

Here is a chart that helps with external dimensions, as well as weight. It is a great tool.


Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Barrel Upgrade

Now, let's talk barrel upgrades. This is a two-part conversation. First, you must decide if you want precision as a priority, or if you prefer reliability under the stresses of high volumes of fire as a priority.

If precision is your choice:
Get a stainless steel heavy barrel. 16" - 18" - 20" are all valid options. Get the midlength gas system on the 16" - but get rifle length gas systems on the 18" and 20".

1:8 twist is ideal. 1:7.7 and 1:7 are not bad.
No reason to get a 1:9 if precision is your desire. Make no mistake, a 1:9 can be just as accurate as a 1:8, the difference is that the 1:8 and 1:7 can shoot heavier bullets (which can be more accurate than lighter bullets). Usually, there is no cost difference.

Free float your barrel. More on this later. 

If high-volume fire reliability is your choice:
Get a chrome-lined barrel. 14.5" - 16" - 20" will be your most common choices. Midlength gas system preferred on the shorter barrels, rifle length on the 20" barrel.

Get a "medium contour" or a "government profile" barrel. You've already degraded the accuracy, no need to pretend any more. You can still be good out to 500, so its fine. Save yourself the weight.

1:9 - 1:8 - 1:7 won't really matter much. If cost is no issue, get the 1:7.

Free float your barrel. More on this later. 


Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Trigger Upgrades

The difference in a stock trigger and a specially-designed AR15 trigger is insurmountable. I've yet to meet a person who purchased a good trigger that ever went back. There's just no point.

A good trigger will have a pull of under 5 lbs, and will have zero reliability issues. Do not go cheap on a trigger. Do not try to get a gunsmith to do a "trigger job." Get a professionally manufactured trigger group that is known for quality and reliability.

Chip McCormick


Monday, January 27, 2014


It is natural, as an AR15 owner, to want to upgrade your rifle. Before you do, it is wise to figure out what you want to upgrade and why. Do things methodically, and based on fact. Avoid upgrades based on emotion or the "oh, that looks cool" factor.

Rule Zero
You must own a rifle and ammo.

Rule 1
You must forge yourself into a marksman.
Learn basic marksmanship. Make your marksmanship practical. Hone your skills.

Rule 2
You must learn to fight with your rifle. 

Rule 3
You must modify your rifle to fit you.

Now it is time to go and buy the necessary equipment. Word to the wise: while an inexpensive red dot or scope is perfectly acceptable for starting rifle owners, the American Rifleman has a high quality optic. Other key components on the primary rifle will also be high quality.

High Quality:
Barrel - $300+
Bolt - $150+
Trigger - $150+
Optic - $500+
Free float tube/rail - $200+

Yes, I just told you to invest $1200+ into your rifle. In all fairness, it is not much more expensive to assemble a completely new rifle at this point. Building a second rifle is good for several reasons:
- having a backup is a good thing.
- building the rifle will teach you a lot about the inner workings of the rifle.
- you get exactly what you want in the new rifle.

First Upgrade
A quick and easy upgrade is the bolt.
Colt. FN. PSA. DD. BCM.
Other companies make good bolts, too - these are just the top names in the industry.

Warning! Do not put the new bolt in a gun which you intend to change the barrel on later! Let the new bolt only work with the new barrel. This lets them wear together, and increases reliability. 

You can get a stainless steel bolt if you want. You can get a bolt with a specific treatment or whatever. At the end of the day, just get a good bolt.

Let's investigate these other upgrades this week!


Friday, January 24, 2014

Gun Fighting 105

Handling corners. Also known as "clearing" rooms. There are several good schools of thought on this. Tactics will vary depending on how many people you have with you. If you are alone, your strategy must (by default) be significantly different than if you have three armed friends backing you up.

Know how to handle a corner.
Know how to handle multiple corners in a field of view.
Know how to handle stairs - up & down.

Be prepared to do same in low light.
Be prepared to handle concealing objects.
Be focused on target identification.

Most importantly, understand when you should clear, and when not to!


Thursday, January 23, 2014

Gunfighting 104

Next up - the use of unconventional positions.

In a gun fight, things do not happen magically, nor are they "pretty." People fall down, trip, get pushed over, and have all sorts of locomotion problems. Can ya blame them? They have people shooting at them!

In addition to practicing shooting while moving, and shooting from cover, a rifleman must know how to shoot from unconventional positions.

Shoot from a supine position
Shoot from laying on the side (both sides)
Shoot from urban prone
Shoot from squatting
Learn how to stand back up properly.


Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Gun Fighting 103

Use of cover.

First, understand the difference between cover and concealment.
Cover - something that can actually shield you from incoming fire.
Concealment - something that simply hides you from being seen, but does not stop incoming fire!

Take cover
If you prefer not to get shot in a gun fight, take cover. Sometimes cover is in front, sometimes it is to the side, and sometimes it is behind you.

Use cover
When fighting back is necessary, use the covering object(s) to cover the majority of your body while taking aim for counter shots. Unless you are in the active military, you likely do not have air support, so an accurate shot will be necessary.

Leave as little of yourself exposed as possible!

Shoot over cover
Shoot under cover
Shoot along side the cover
Shoot through gaps / holes in the cover

Brace your rifle on the ground, or on the cover, when taking longer shots. This adds to stability and makes those shots more accurate. The first hit is far more important than the number of shots fired.

When using the AR15 rifle, do not rest the actual barrel on the cover, unless you want to miss your target. It will shift your point of impact (POI). Rest the handguard on the cover. This is why you get a free-floated handguard. This is why you get as long a free floated handguard as you can (12" minimum, in my book).

Consider changing your position behind the cover to take follow up shots.


Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Gun Fighting 102

Now that you know how to clear malfunctions, let's move on to more "advanced" topics. Next up: Shooting while moving.

If you find yourself in a gun fight, and you're not shooting, you should be moving, taking cover, or reloading.
Maybe more than one of those...

Shooting offhand (while standing) is fine. Providing your opponent an unmoving target can prove fatal. If they are shooting back, you must move!

- Shooting while tactically advancing (moving forwards).
- Shooting while tactically retreating (moving backwards).
- Shooting while moving to the side (both sides).
- Shooting while moving diagonally.
- Shooting while changing directions.

For fun:
- Throw in some reloading.
- Throw in some mechanical failures.
- Throw in some multiple targets.
- Throw in some moving targets.
- Throw in targets at different ranges.
- Move to cover while shooting.


Monday, January 20, 2014


In Kindergarten, when you untie a classmate's shoes, you might be punished with a "time-out." In the NBA, you get fined more than the annual income of over half the USA - $50,000.

Of course, for Smith, who makes $5.6 million per year, that is only 0.89% of his annual salary. It would be like fining a regular person about $400. Still sounds expensive to me. Why not just play better defense, instead?

Friday, January 17, 2014

Fuji Gi Review

Just before Christmas, I cashed in a cash-back offer on a credit card I use for business expenses. With a portion of the money, I purchased a uniform from Fuji Sports. I have heard much about them, seen the BJJ uniforms offered as prizes at BJJ competitions, and even read some reviews. A couple of friends who train BJJ have bought them, and they had good things to say about Fuji.

Now, it's my turn.

I purchased the "BJJ All Around" uniform in white. I do not train BJJ, but this uniform is largely devoid of the excessive patches present on most BJJ uniforms.

It has a very crisp and handsome looking logo embroidered on the left shoulder and the nape of the neck. It came with BJJ patches unattached. I will not be affixing them on my uniform (anybody want some good looking patches?). It is a good bleached white color. Not bright, but not matte, either.

The fit was superb. I ordered a size "A-4" which is analogous to the traditional martial arts size 6. I stand 6'2" and weigh about 220 pounds. Fuji's size chart indicates the A-4 will fit a person 6'0" - 6'4" and 200 - 250 pounds. I fall right into the middle of that range.

For those wondering, my waist measures 37" and my chest is 48" and the jacket fit around my torso is perfect - complete overlap in front of the folds. A larger person who wants the gi to completely overlap in front would want to order larger. Similarly, a man with smaller measurements who wants the gi to completely overlap should order a smaller size.

The pants were ever-so-slightly long on me. However, I have only a 29" inseam, so this is expected. I would imagine these pants to be a perfect fit for 99% of the folks out there 6' to 6'4" in length. The pants fit around the waist perfectly. I would imagine that someone with a 40" waist or larger would want to move up in size. Similarly, a man with a waist smaller than 36" who wants a snug fit might want a smaller size.

The hand opening at the end of the sleeve is much narrower than the judo gis I have. Makes sleeve chokes... interesting. Similarly, the ankle opening on the pant leg is tapered to a good fit. Speaking of the pants, the knee pad covers the entire front half of the pant leg from the ankle cuff all the way up to mid-thigh. The pants tie-cord is rather plain, but I will upgrade sooner rather than later.

The jacket material is noticeably thicker and nicer than the single-weave judo uniforms I own. It is not as thick as any double-weave I've ever seen or owned. The pants material is thicker than standard judo gi material... but not too much so. I'd say the difference between an 8-oz fabric vs. 10-oz fabric.

I have lucked out in the past with two Gladiator uniforms from AWMA, which turned out to have very soft jacket material. I'm talking softer than Charmin, man. However, I have another Gladiator uniform from AWMA that is very rough material. The jacket from Fuji leans 2/3 of the way to the softer uniforms. Not the softest I've ever felt, but much softer than your typical judo gi.

This is what amazed me the most. Although a decent judo gi can be had for under $100, the same is not true of BJJ uniforms. BJJ uniforms usually start around $120 - $150, and go up to $300+.

The Fuji All Around gi has a list price of $94 + shipping.

I ordered several belts for my students in an upcoming belt test, in addition to the uniform, so I cannot say what the shipping charges would be for the uniform alone.

Yes, I ordered a BJJ style uniform.
No, I do not practice, train, or teach BJJ. I have no rank in BJJ.
Yes, I will be wearing my (Japanese) Jiu-Jitsu black belt when I train and teach with this uniform on.
(if I ever decide to take a BJJ class, I'll naturally wear a white belt)

There are some keyboard commandos that make the impression this offends them.

If this is an issue for you, get over it. I do not claim to train or teach BJJ. It is not a BJJ belt. It is a uniform that can be worn during BJJ, Judo, or any other martial arts class. It works perfectly for my class. If this is still an issue, then you shouldn't wear Judo uniforms in your BJJ classes, nor should anyone else. Kinda silly concept if you ask me. Again, get over it. The issue is in your head, and nobody I've ever met on the mat cared.


Thursday, January 16, 2014

One Trick Pony?

Some people call UFC Women's Bantamweight Champion Ronda Rousey a one-trick pony. This monicker is given because Rousey has won every professional fight so far with juji gatame - and all of them except the most recent have come in the first round. Truth be told, Rousey won all three of her amateur bouts via first round juji gatame as well.

Those familiar with the grappling arts, however, often claim Rousey is anything but a one-trick pony. Indeed, she has shown attacks with other submissions. Also, Rousey has used multiple setups to attain her juji gatame finishes. Let's look at that in more detail:

Match 1 - Rousey vs. Gomes
Ediene Gomes, a Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt, was defeated in 25 seconds via Rousey's juji gatame. Seen here at 2:05, Rousey threw Gomes, mounter her, and rained down punches to entice Gomes into turning. Gomes would not have turned had those punches not been devastating. Rousey uses a standard Judo entry into juji gatame from the back at 2:09 - 2:15.
Here is a Judo instructional on this particular setup.

Match 2 - Rousey vs. Tweet
In June of 2011, Rousey defeated Tweet with a juji gatame at 0:49 of Round 1. Seen here at 1:08, Tweet was mounted, and made the mistake of attempting to dislodge Rousey by pushing straight up. This is what we call a "gift" and Rousey took it for the win.
Here is an instructional on this setup - one of the most basic in jiu-jitsu and Judo.

Match 3 - Rousey vs. D'Alelio
Sarah D'Alelio was Rousey's third opponent, and has a name that MMA legend Bas Ruten enjoys saying. Rousey defeated D'Alelio in 25 seconds with juji gatame. In the match, Rousey was attempting several takedowns, then jumped guard. Almost immediately, Rousey went into a standard transition into juji gatame from high guard and won the match - at 1:19 here.
Here is an instructional on this setup.

Match 4 - Rousey vs. Budd
Rousey defeated Julia Budd via juji gatame in 0:39. Rousey secured juji gatame from mount, but it was a different setup than she used against Tweet. Budd did not push up, but instead, allowed her elbows to separate from her body - a big no-no in grappling. Rousey spotted the opportunity and used a setup called "S-Mount." Here you can view the submission at 5:00.
Here is an instructional on this setup.

Match 5 - Rousey vs. Tate 1
Rousey's first victory over Tate came in 4:27 of Round 1 - about 4:30 here. Tate turned her back (punches) and Rousey punched the back of her head for a moment to entice Tate into bringing her arms up. The rest of the setup was identical to Rousey's juji gatame win over Gomes. The main difference in setup was that Rousey had Gomes' arm during the turn. Rousey did not secure Tate's arm until she had been back-mounted for a couple of moments.

Match 6 - Rousey vs. Kaufman
Rousey's win came at 0:54 of Round 1 - seen here at 1:40. The setup was from what is called the modified mount - when the opponent is mounted, but laying on her side. It was a standard setup, but Kaufman rolled forward, face-down in a vain attempt to escape. Rousey switched to her Judo-style roll transition to keep the arm and flip Kaufman over.
Here is an instructional video on this style of setup. Combine it with the flipping transition from Rousey-Gomes.

Match 7 - Rousey vs. Carmouche
This match, the inaugural UFC women's bantamweight championship match, saw a Rousey win at 4:49 of the first round with juji gatame. This time, Rousey used an arm triangle as a setup - seen here at 7:15. I have looked extensively, and cannot find this setup anywhere, however, the concept is pretty simple: attack with an arm triangle (kata gatame) and transition to juji gatame when the opponent rolls.

Match 8 - Rousey vs. Tate 2
Tate took Rousey into the 3rd Round, but Rousey pressed the attack virtually the entire match and finished with juji gatame yet again. At first glance, it might seem like this one happened like Rousey-Tate 1, as Rousey secured the arm from an almost back-mounted position - but that would be a poor assumption. In actuality, Rousey threw Tate with sumi gaeshi, and transitioned immediately into a juji gatame attack. It wasn't a guard, and it wasn't a back control - it was a juji gatame roll position - and it came straight from the throw.
Look at the .gif images here. Image 11 and 12 detail the final setup and image 13 shows the finish of the juji gatame.  

Only Rousey-Gomes and Rousey-Tate 1 had similar finishes, but even then, the exact setup was quite different. With Gomes, Rousey had the arm secured on the turn. With Tate, Rousey used punches from the back to force Tate to defend. When Tate lifted her arms to defend, Rousey was waiting and caught the arm.

Eight professional fights... eight juji gatame wins... eight different setups.


Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Calvinist Corner - January 2014

Calvinism is not Biblical Doctrine. It's a human philosophy that appeals to proud-minded individuals.

Seems that atheists like Calvinistic viewpoints. Atheists use these viewpoints in their attempts to disprove and discredit Christianity. Hard to find them using Arminian or true Biblical viewpoints as their arguments.


Atheists really like the predestination to Hell concept. They know and can see clearly that predestination to Heaven by necessity includes predestination of the others to Hell. That is not the act of a loving god. That god would not be worthy of worship.

No Free Will
"We must question the story logic of having an all-knowing all-powerful God, who creates faulty Humans, and then blames them for his own mistakes." - Gene Roddenberry
If we are not free to choose, as Calvinists contend, then why would God punish any of us?

"Don't insult my intelligence by talking about God's unconditional love in one breath and how I am going to Hell in the next." - Bob Peters

I could go on...


Tuesday, January 14, 2014

5 out of 20

 What do you think of Dave Ramsey’s “20 Things Rich People Do Every Day?

I've written about Ramsey before. His advice on getting out of debt is good. His advice on insurance, investments, and other nuances can range from somewhat faulty to outright fallacy. This blog post he put up originates from Tom Corley's website about rich habits. I must admit that I am not thoroughly familiar with Corley's work, but I can analyze the 20 points and give you my $0.02 (which is what this blog is all about).

1. 70% of wealthy eat less than 300 junk food calories per day. 97% of poor people eat more than 300 junk food calories per day. 23% of wealthy gamble. 52% of poor people gamble.

In the US, this is almost unavoidable. Prepackaged food is far less expensive than fresh whole foods.
The statement on gambling is accurate, but understand that most self-made millionaires do not gamble with "Powerball," they gamble with borrowed money on an idea of their own.

2. 80% of wealthy are focused on accomplishing some single goal. Only 12% of the poor do this.
The error in this statement is the assumption of the cause-effect correlation to the behavior. Most wealthy are above average intelligence, and can easily prioritize.

3. 76% of wealthy exercise aerobically four days a week. 23% of poor do this.
Again, it is not the exercise that makes one wealthy (though it might be the same discipline that encourages one to exercise). The poor (especially in the US) fall into one of two broad categories: A) the working poor, and B) the "FSA" (welfare recipients). The working poor are hardworking people indeed, and have little leftover time for exercise. The FSA do not exercise by definition. Skewed data is skewed.

4. 63% of wealthy listen to audio books during commute to work vs. 5% of poor people.
The free ones are not worth listening to, the others are not affordable to the poor. Furthermore, Most of the poor are subsidized, and do not work. Again, assumption of data that is quite skewed in reality.

5. 81% of wealthy maintain a to-do list vs. 19% of poor.
I'll let this one pass. Smacks a bit of #2.

6. 63% of wealthy parents make their children read two or more non-fiction books a month vs. 3% of poor.
Have you seen the stats on 2nd-generation self-made "wealthy?" Irrelevant statement here.

7. 70% of wealthy parents make their children volunteer 10 hours or more a month vs. 3% of poor.
Again, we are comparing those who do and earn to those who take and consume.

8. 80% of wealthy make Happy Birthday calls vs. 11% of poor.
Truly - what does this have to do with anything? The closest thing I can conjecture is that the poor are mostly subsidized people. These people, by definition, are very selfish. Hence the statistic.

9. 67% of wealthy write down their goals vs. 17% of poor.
Like #5, I'll give you this one, but again, it smacks of the underlying misconstruction.

10. 88% of wealthy read 30 minutes or more each day for education or career reasons vs. 2% of poor.
Ahhhh... The first real stat not inherently dependent on faulty assumptions. Most of the wealthy are self-made. You do not become a self-made man (or woman) without doing what you do better than most. To do that, you must educate yourself.

11. 6% of wealthy say what’s on their mind vs. 69% of poor.
Misconstruction: "most" of what are called "wealthy" for this poll were actually the upper 50% of the income bracket. The vast majority of those people (45 out of every 50) are employed by someone else, and must hold their tongue for company policy reasons. Those wealthy who are self employed, might hold their tongue in certain situations, but generally say what they think. 

12. 79% of wealthy network five hours or more each month vs. 16% of poor.
Because their job depends on it. The subsidized have no need of networking.

13. 67% of wealthy watch one hour or less of TV every day vs. 23% of poor.
Because they are busy working 55 hour jobs. Subsidized people get money and benefits without the inconvenience of work.

14. 6% of wealthy watch reality TV vs. 78% of poor.
Same as #13 and #12.

15. 44% of wealthy wake up three hours before work starts vs. 3% of poor.
Same as #12, #13, #14. People who do not work cannot awaken 3 hours before work.

16. 74% of wealthy teach good daily success habits to their children vs. 1% of poor.
The key word here is "good." Most of the poor are subsidized, and teach their children the same. This is not "good." Most of the working poor haven't figured out yet how to make money, and therefore cannot teach their children "good" habits. (Even Dave says "not to take financial advice from broke people.")Still, I'll give it a pass on technicality.

17. 84% of wealthy believe good habits create opportunity luck vs. 4% of poor.
Ahhh... true point #2 out of 20 (not bad for 17 entries in).

18. 76% of wealthy believe bad habits create detrimental luck vs. 9% of poor.
Winner because it is the inverse of #17.

19. 86% of wealthy believe in lifelong educational self-improvement vs. 5% of poor.

See #10. Also, why would a subsidized person want to self-improve when they have everything they want with no effort?

20. 86% of wealthy love to read vs. 26% of poor.
#10, #13, #14 demonstrate my point again. This point is redundant.


Monday, January 13, 2014

Christian Exclusivists

Many pastors of the Christian faith would say that if a person has sincere faith in God the Father, but not necessarily in Jesus Christ, then that person will be condemned. I know of a few, in particular, that point to John 14:6 as their reference for that viewpoint. How would you respond?

Great question! Let's dig into it a bit...

If one is familiar with the Mechanics of Salvation, then one knows that salvation is a gift granted by God. To receive the gift, a person must: A) believe in God, B) repent (turn away from sin and toward God), and C) do those things God commands as a demonstration of faith.

In the above linked blog post, I talked about how John 14:6 is often twisted by some to mean Christ is the only way to God in the sense of, one must believe in Christ only, and that regardless of belief in God the Father. Here are some problems with that point of view:

1. Jesus Himself said that the Father was greater in John 14:28.
You have heard Me tell you, ‘I am going away and I am coming to you.’ If you loved Me, you would have rejoiced that I am going to the Father, because the Father is greater than I.
2. Deuteronomy 30 dictates that those who love the Lord and keep His commands (assumed that the person believes in God, as one would not love God without believing in Him) will see eternal life:
If you obey the commands of the Lord your God that I am commanding you today to love the Lord your God, to walk in His ways, and to keep His commands, statutes, and ordinances, then you will live
So, if this verse is not true, then it means that either:
A) God lied when He promised it, or
B) God changed His mind.

We know these are not the case, because God is the same yesterday, today, and forever (Hebrews 13:8). We also know neither of these statements is true because God doesn't change (Malachi 3:6), and that includes a change of mind on what is needed for salvation.

Once again, it is not a method that "apart from Christ" a person can be saved. It is because of God's grace and love that a person gains eternal life.


Friday, January 10, 2014

Rifleman's Challenge

I recently took the Rifleman's Challenge.

10 shots
60 seconds
25 yards
No resting the rifle on an object. Sling use is OK.


Rifleman's Challenge 1
AR15 Rifle - M16A4 clone
LaRue quad rail
Stainless Steel heavy barrel from Model 1 Sales
55-grain ammo (Federal AE)
ACOG (had to hold between the 300-meter and 400-meter hashes)

Experiment 2
Marlin 795
Simple 4x scope
Winchester 555 bulk ammo


Thursday, January 9, 2014

Barrel Deflection

Sometimes, one hears the term "barrel deflection" when speaking of rifle shooting. Simply put, the term refers to the effect had on a barrel from external pressure bending a the barrel a microscopic amount. With the AR15, there are a multitude of tubes, rails, and other free float handguards for the consumer, but they all basically work in the same way: the device isolates the barrel and has no separate point of contact other than at the receiver.

Since there are two broad ways to assemble the barrel to the rifle: free-floated and non-free floated; there are naturally arguments about the pros and cons to each concept. Broadly speaking, free-floated rails are inherently more accurate. Sometimes (not always), the free-floating device adds weight to the rifle. The arguments surrounding non-free floating revolve around A) reduced cost, and; B) only marginal increase in accuracy for free-floated devices in controlled environments.

However, almost unique to the AR15, you will occasionally see internet commandos spout the fact that the accuracy increase is only marginal. For example: a given non-free floated barrel might be capable of 2 MOA accuracy; yet only increase to 1.0 - 1.5 MOA accuracy after free floating. People who prefer the non-free floated setups (often the more "budget-conscious" consumer), spout this fact as their slogan of choice.

These statements are misleading, as slogans always are.

Take this experiment for example:

Fixed Variables:
Rifle: AR15 - 20" barrel - non-free floated.
Ammo: 55-grain bulk ammo (Monarch brass cased)
4-shot groups.
Distance: 25-yards

Experiment 1:
Rested on the forearm vs. magazine rested
The top group was shot first, resting the rifle comfortably on a field rucksack.
The middle group was shot resting on the magazine as a monopod.
Clearly, the first (top) group was 2" high.

Experiment 2:
Group 1 - Rested on a rucksack
Group 2 - Rested on magazine as a monopod
Group 3 - Tight sling used. 

Clearly, the two-inch (8 MOA) deflection experienced when propping on a rucksack rest is repeated.
Interestingly, the deflection from magazine rest to sling rest is only a quarter-inch down (1 MOA), but is an inch to the left (4MOA). 

Comment - comparing resting on a rucksack to sling use, and there is 9 MOA of shift vertically and 4 MOA horizontally.  Invoking use of the pythagorean theorem, the direct MOA shift is 9.87.

A near 10 MOA shift difference experienced from ruck rested to sling use makes long-range shooting over 200 yards sketchy, if not downright impossible.

Also note that with the exception of a single flier in group 1 of the second picture, the rested rifle groups were very tight, whereas the sling use opened the group up consistently. This shooter has shot consistent sub-1" groups at 25-yards with a free-floated AR15. A near 2" group like this is unacceptably errant.

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

What It Is Is

So we all heard the story about the ship that got stuck in the ice.

What the news isn't reporting is that the ship's mission was to observe disappearing ice due to the effects of "global warming."
(as I type this out, it is supposed to get down to 2 degrees here in Tennessee)


Are You Ready?

"Are you ready?"
My dad used to ask that question relentlessly to determine if we had dressed and put on our shoes.
Side note: he HATED for us to not have shoes on, even in the house.

If I were to wake up in a hotel (I travel with some frequency), and need to get up, shower, shave, pack, and leave, this is how long it takes me:

Monday, January 6, 2014

Sermon Notes 1/5

From the sermon yesterday...

This is my Bible. There are many like it, but this one is mine. My Bible is my best friend... it is my life. I must master it if I want to master my life.
(OK, pastor didn't say that, but I thought it appropriate.)

What to do with my Bible:

1. Respect it massively.
2. Read it consistently.
3. Bring it faithfully.
4. Obey it wholeheartedly.
5. Live it passionately.
6. Memorize it happily. 
7. Speak it forcefully.


Odd Hotel Find

I recently was out of town on business, and this is what the hotel AC unit looked like (no, it didn't work):

Friday, January 3, 2014

Changing Salvation


All three believe in the same God - Jehova. That much has been stated on this blog before, prompting this message from a reader:

Some say that salvation is through Christ alone. I saw the other day where someone wrote that if a person sincerely believes in God, but does not put their faith in Jesus, then they will not be saved. How do you feel about this?

Great question!

Step 1 - Salvation
First, we must ask - what were the mechanics of salvation in the Old Testament?
Simple - 1) belief in God, 2) repentance (turning from sin), and 3) demonstration of 1 & 2 by ones faithful actions (aka - "good works").

Note: people could not believe in Jesus prior to Jesus being born. God made no mention of Jesus in the Old Testament. 

Step 2 - God changing
Does God change? Does God change His mind?
More to the point - has God changed how salvation works?

One cannot answer "yes" to either question and back it up with scripture that directly points to any change in the conditions of salvation. However, there are many instances in the New Testament where Jesus, the Apostles, and Paul all give the same road to salvation that was given above (belief - repentance - obedience).

Alternate step 3 - There was a change
So you think that the mechanics did change. OK, some people agree with you. Maybe you say there was an element of works in the OT times, and Jesus made it so that was not the case.
First - read the books of Matthew, Mark, Luke, Acts, Hebrews, James, 1 Peter, 2 Peter.
OK - back now?

Still unconvinced?
You must be putting more faith in allegorical words form Paul than in direct literal words from Jesus Christ Himself (and His closest disciple... and His brother). Learn more about "conflicting commands" in the NT.

Still not buying it?
You really want the Bible to say what you believe.
A better approach is to believe what the Bible says.   :)