Self Defense Carbine’s: Ammunition

What is your choice when it comes to a self defense rifle round? Why?

Was it handed to you at a gun store? The guy or gal recommended it from behind the counter and you took their offered suggestion. Do they have the knowledge base necessary to know?

As with all things, seek the greater knowledge base and make an informed decision.

For 9mm, both handgun and carbine, I use 124gr and up hollow point ammunition. I’ve used Hornady’s Critical Duty, Sig Sauer’s JHP’s, and my personal preference is Federal HSP’s in the 147gr variety.

Why? There is enough data from multiple sources saying the ammo will do as I ask it too… probably.

All ammunition is a gamble! Remember that.

It’s hoping that the myriad of crazy situational and environmental factors align in such a way that the round performs as advertised it will when it was shot in a controlled environment.

All considered, for general use I would recommend the following. Please note these are ammunition types that can be met by several brands and deal with 5.56/.223

Soft Point or OTM 69-77gr – Mk. 262, Hornady SBR HD, Black Hills OTM, etc. Heavier rounds at high velocity will deal well terminally and usually consistently, all things considered. They have less trouble with intermediate barriers but don’t pose a tremendous over penetration threat either. They also tend to perform well out of shorter barrel platforms with 1:7 and 1:8 rifling twists, increasingly popular defensive carbines. They have excellent performance out of conventional barrel lengths of 14.5″-20″ which result in higher velocities and better terminal effects.

Speed is the .223/5.56’s greatest wounding effect. Choose a rifle accordingly. The downside to these ammunition choices is generally cost/availability.

While I don’t recommend putting a price limit on your life, that doesn’t change the amount sitting in anyone person’s checking account. These rounds aren’t inexpensive and they won’t be on as many shelves in quantity where they are available. Shop online for the best prices but be prepared to buy in bulk to do so.

M193 – Dropping to a 55gr steals almost 1/3rd of the mass available to a 5.56/.223 round. This isn’t ideal but it is, economically and availability wise, easier to sustain. M193 clone loads of 55gr FMJ lead core projectiles are readily available and easily bought for under .30 cents a round at present. Terminally these rounds frag to a high degree when encountering a target and that makes them useful. This is especially true close to the target.

A caution though. Be aware of ALL of the known effects of the round you choose. M193 is a good round, and available, but when used on intermediate barriers it really likes to frag. It practically explodes when it hits vehicle glass, not just deflecting. This requires a shooter to adapt their engagement to what their round is going to do and be even more ready to change target area or fire follow up shots to get a positive effect on target.

More data below from Sage Dynamics.

Regardless of the ro und you choose, understand what it is going to do.

For instance, I recommend against M855/SS109 if you can get M193 instead. The M855’s mild steel core and construction alters the wounding and penetration capabilities (especially considering over penetration) further from ideal defensively. Yes it is a proven lethal round. Yes it is a NATO military round. Yes it can defeat certain classes of armor by design. But how likely are you to face an armored opposition that has armor vulnerable to M855 but not M193? Compare that to a likely unarmored threat needing a more general engagement in an environment where M855 may be a greater liability. There’s a reason officers don’t load patrol rifles with M855 and that the construction of Mk. 318 and M855A1 is so drastically different from M855.

At the end of the day a loaded rifle trumps an empty one in a fight, load Wolf/Tula if you have to. But have a care for your tools and their capabilities and plan your loadout to effect.

Sometimes I Just Want to Fight

TBT When I had a chip on my shoulder the size of Manhattan.

Sometimes I don’t want to talk, I just want to fight. How many of us feel like that? You might feel like the baddest guy on the block but there’s a guy out there who feels no differently than you and he’s better conditioned, better prepared and it’s likely given the right circumstances he’s going to wipe the floor clean with you. I’m reminded of an old story where a large group of us outnumbered a smaller group that was better armed with a hammer, morning star, knife and some other tools. Despite how many cool moves we had the fighting spirit left my weaker-minded friends when a hammer smashed one down. What were we supposed to do? Not everyone thinks like you. We dragged him away to regroup and they pursued eventually shooting at us until the police came in pursuit. They and their fleeing mini truck were never located. I think it was Mike Tyson who stated that everyone has a plan until they get hit in the face. My friends are all grown up now, married and with kids most likely. Try doing time in the pen because you couldn’t just walk away. Life goes on and no one cares when you get out. Most of us survived youth. Some lost the fire. Some still hold it and continually stoke it. If you’re feeling like there’s a fight inside of you I recommend taking it into the gym and onto the mat and see what kind of gas you have. Reality tells the truth. Unless you’re exercising, practicing self defense and learning to shoot I recommend that you keep your feelings to yourself and stay locked in your room. Leave when you’ve had some time to cool. It might save you, your family, and the friends you love a world of hurt.

*The views and opinions expressed on this website are solely those of the original authors and contributors. These views and opinions do not necessarily represent those of Spotter Up Magazine, the administrative staff, and/or any/all contributors to this site.

Brought to you by the dudes at Spotter Up


Springeld Armory 911 .380

Photos by: 2EXTREME and Gail Pepin

 We test Springfield Armory’s first .380 – user friendly, and remarkably accurate with the loads it likes best.

Yeah, I know: I’m the guy who said “friends don’t let friends carry mouse guns,” and here I am testing a .380 pocket pistol. Testing a .380 makes me feel like Ralph Nader driving a Corvair (millennials can Google that reference). I sometimes think Editor Ben Battles has a cruel sense of humor, and needs to be reminded that being mean to old people is a hate crime. But, what the hell, here goes.

Some people can’t carry more than a .380. Physical size is a factor. So is physical shape, in the sense of both configuration and condition. Wardrobe required for work or chosen for daily life may be a factor. Sometimes, while it’s strictly legal to carry at work, it’s against company policy and a hazard to continued employment to do so, making minimum size mandatory. I get it.

The .380 ACP, created by John Moses Browning more than a century ago, is also known colloquially as the 9mm Short. It tends to come up short in wound ballistics as well. This means that if you’re going to carry one, you want one that allows you to deliver accurate shot placement very rapidly. Springfield Armory knew that when they came up with their new 911 pistol in .380.

First Look

The 911 has excellent sights, which help the shooter achieve the precision accuracy a lower-powered pistol most needs. Author also liked these features: (1) visible and palpable loaded chamber indicator, (2) additional visible loaded chamber viewing port, and (3) perfectly shaped and adjusted ambidextrous thumb safety.

The Colt Pocket Model of 1908, the .380 version of the Browning-designed Colt .32 of 1903, was hugely popular “back in the day.” It was flat, slim, and easy to shoot straight in spite of its tiny sights. Colt resurrected that concept with their Government .380 and Mustang series. At the risk of oversimplification, these were partly resurrected 1903/1908 models, and partly scaled-down 1911 models. Colt still lists the Mustang in their catalog, and today the concept is increasingly popular. SIG’s version, the P238, is one of their best sellers and, in some sectors, their very best selling pistol. Others have more or less copied it, notably Browning Arms. Springfield Armory now joins that wave with the 911 model, our sample .380 being serial number CC050505 (hey – that number has a rhythm to it).

The lightweight 7075 T6 aluminum frame houses large and easy-to-manipulate mag-release and slide-stop controls. Combined with the grippy G10 thin-line grip panels, Springfield’s Octo-Grip front- and rear-strap texturing treatment keeps the pistol planted under recoil. The 911’s trigger reach proved VERY suitable for short fingers.

With a frame that‘s short front to back, and a relatively short trigger, the “trigger reach” on this pistol places the “go button” right under the distal joint of the index finger of a lot of folks who have trouble with trigger reach, and on the pad (the center of the whorl of the fingerprint) if you have very short fingers. The pistol has G10 grips, which are rough enough to give an excellent grasp with wet hands in rapid fire, and just thick enough that my own thumb doesn’t either block the trigger finger or hit the magazine release button inadvertently when that digit is curled down. (Why curl down the thumb? Because with the .380’s mild power, a high thumb making inadvertent contact with the slide could slow down the cycle enough to jam the pistol.)

Cocked and locked for safe, fast response, the 911 is if anything smaller than striker-fired equivalent, and more streamlined at rear of slide for faster clearing in pocket draw.

Having discussed the bad news with the .380’s power level and slide cycling, let’s discuss the good news. For those who don’t have strong hands (which could be any of us if we are injured in the course of a fight) once the hammer is cocked rearward to eliminate mainspring resistance against the slide, the .380’s very light recoil spring makes it very easy to rack the slide of the Springfield 911.

Touring TrackingPoint’s facility, where precision guided firearms are made (VIDEOS) recently toured TrackingPoint’s Pflugerville, Texas facility where the company’s high tech hardware is assembled and programmed by white-gloved specialists.

Since TrackingPoint launched in 2011, both the company’s Precision Guided Firearms and their applications have evolved. Vice president of manufacturing Nelson Whiting explained that many — including company execs — thought the best avenue for the product was military and law enforcement, but much of the company’s focus has been on hunters.

“We’ve since expanded to the safari enthusiasts, the outdoorsmen … even ranchers, folks that don’t have all day to run the fence line but need to take care of their predator population,” Whiting said. “There’s a lot of use-cases for it in the real world.”

TrackingPoint’s basic product, the PGF, is controlled with a highly specialized scope that locks onto a target and discharges a projectile only when sights re-align. Once a target is tagged, the user depresses the trigger and holds it until re-aligning the sights at which the gun goes boom.

But the rifle systems are expensive — costing some $7,000 to $17,000 — but the company promises premier service for the hefty price tag. The scope is ready to go out of the box, requires little to no adjustments and is accurate up to 1,000 yards, depending on the caliber and model.

“It’s a high-tech product. You deserve that kind of service. It’s not like you’re going to a local store and buying a $100 optic … the product if not used properly will not function the way you hope it will,” said Ken D’Arcy, TrackingPoint’s chief executive.

“I’d like to use the analogy if smart phones we use today were brought out 15 years ago, nobody would have bought it,” he said, adding the feature-rich devices would have been overwhelming and applications superfluous. He continued: “TrackingPoint did the same thing in 2011. They came out with a product that was far beyond what anybody ever expected what anybody ever thought they might want,” and suggested his company is trying to evolve the gun industry.

“Technology … needs to come into the firearms industry. Technology will come into optics and is coming into optics,” he said. Moving forward, D’Arcy said one of the next evolutions of the product is taking it off the gun and making just the optic available. “It will come in the package set to work. You just put it on your gun, zero it the same as you normally would zero any gun and it will do much of the rest, but with your own gun, you will not have trigger control,” he said, but a timeline for its release is unclear.

Sunday Sermon: Hands Kill

Threat scanning is a crucial part of awareness. Being aware of who and what is around you and what threat or potential threat they pose.

But how are you judging this?

Mostly, nonverbal communication. You’re watching people and their body language to gauge whether or not they’re preparing themselves for violence.

You’re looking for someone’s behavior outside the baseline, that range of behavior normal for your location.

You know what normal behavior is at your favorite spot for breakfast, at the beach, in the grocery store, etc. So when someone is acting outside the normal range of accepted behavior what are you going to do?

Step 1. Watch their hands.

Step 2. Keep watching their hands.

Step 3. Remain at a respectful enough distance so that whatever is in their hands or their hands themselves can’t engage you without you reacting.

Step 4. Watch. Their. Hands.

Regardless of how else you engage with a person or persons, verbally or physically, you must maintain visual awareness of any advantage they attempt to grab onto.

Hands vanishing into pockets, under shirts, or into waistlines are all ‘not good’ indicators in an escalating situation. Equally hands grabbing a bottle or bar stool. The probability that a gun, knife, bludgeon, or other injurious instrument is about to enter the situation is getting higher. Even clenching fists are an indicator that you are going to have to make quick decisions to avoid and minimize injury.

Talk them down.



Ultimately, the more time you can give yourself and anyone under your protection through your observations will aid in the success of your reaction. An extra second to say something to deescalate. An extra step or two worth of distance, almost universally your friend, to put you at advantage. An extra moment to clear your holster.

Watch the hands.

Rare Breed Firearms teams up with Spike’s Tactical for Spartan AR

Rare Breed Firearms offers an ancient take on the modern AR with its Spartan theme. (Photo: Rare Breed Firearms)

Rare Breed Firearms delivers a new AR-15 theme, known as the Spartan, available exclusively through Spike’s Tactical.

The Spartan theme is available in full-length rifle, short-barreled rifle and pistol configurations in addition to lowers and matched billet sets. The Spartan AR series embodies the warrior spirit of the famed Spartan clan who stood against Xerxes in ancient Greece.

“Inspired by the Spartans who closed the Hot Gates on Xerxes, this lower honors the warrior mindset,” Rare Breed said in a statement. “Technology evolves, warriors never change.”

The Spartan lineup houses complete rifles as well as lowers, designed to complete any AR build. (Photo: Rare Breed Firearms)

Created from a 7075 T6 billet receiver, the multi caliber lower features a MIL-A-8625F Type III Class 2 hard coat anodized finish. The Spartan rifles offer 11.5-inch and 14.5-inch barrel lengths, depending on user preference, with a pistol and SBR configuration also available for those that prefer an even more compact profile.

Not to forget those in restricted states, Rare Breed and Spike’s Tactical are also providing a California Featureless option that meets the strict requirements for rifle ownership in the Golden State.

The new Spartan lineup is available solely on Spike Tactical’s website with prices starting at $115 for a stripped lower and topping out at $2,825 for the Spartan SBR.

The Spartan rifle offers a bronzed Cerakote for an antique look. (Photo: Rare Breed Firearms)

SB Tactical, The Gun Collective team up for The Legal Brief

The Gun Collective and SB Tactical are teaming up in support of The Legal Brief. (Photo: The Gun Collective via YouTube)

SB Tactical and The Gun Collective join forces to further the future of The Legal Brief, a “fast-paced” weekly video series dedicated to exploring gun laws, announcing that SB Tactical will assume the role of title sponsor for the TGC series.

Hosted by renowned firearms attorney Adam Kraut, Esq., The Legal Brief “breaks down” a variety of gun laws — past, present and future — as well as dispelling myths and misinformation surrounding gun laws.

Serving as the video series exclusive sponsor for 12 months, SB Tactical said the opportunity to educate firearms consumers was the driving force behind the partnership.

The Legal Brief host Adam Kraut, Esq. struts with a SB Tactical design. (Photo: The Gun Collective via YouTube)

“We are excited to be sponsoring The Legal Brief and be a part of what The Gun Collective is doing for the firearms community,” Alex Bosco, Inventor and CEO of SB Tactical, said in a press release. “The quality content that the show delivers each week not only helps educate our consumer base, but does so in a way that is enjoyable to watch and easy to understand.”

The Legal Brief episodes are accessible 24/7 on The Gun Collective, available through Facebook, Full30, YouTube and IGTV. TGC owner Jon Patton said he’s excited about the merging of the two brands to facilitate the future of The Legal Brief.

“Having SB Tactical on board with TGC is fantastic,” Patton said. “It makes perfect sense to bring the two brands together on a show all about gun law.”

Kraut also voiced his approval of the deal. “It’s an honor having a company like SB Tactical, known for its innovation in the marketplace, to believe enough in what we’re doing here at TGC to put their name alongside The Legal Brief.”

The Legal Brief boasts nearly 100 episodes in its repertoire with new episodes released every Wednesday evening at 6 p.m. EST.

Shots Fired! ATI .410 Omni AR Shotgun

We’ve seen shotguns based on the AK system, and shotguns that look like ARs, but American Tactical has released something revolutionary.  The Omni .410 is a shotgun upper that mates to any standard AR lower.  This means your favorite furniture and trigger can now be used to sling slugs, birdshot, buckshot, or any of those wild defensive rounds developed after the Taurus Judge reinvigorated appreciation for the .410.

Shots Fired! ATI .410 Omni AR Shotgun

ATI 15-round magazine! Will it work with rimmed ammo?

ATI spent six years developing this gun and it shows.  It would have been easier to make an AR-looking gun.  Simpler to keep the gun tube-fed, and quicker to give it an adjustable gas setting like we’ve seen on other guns but they didn’t.  Just like the efforts and innovations to make a functional 21st-century polymer 1911, ATI waited to make sure this gun would work.  They assured me that it would work with their ammunition.  One would certainly hope so!  While I trusted that it would, I wanted to know how it would run with regular commercial ammunition.

I gathered up a variety from Hornady, Remington, Wichester, and Estate.  From high-velocity heavy loads to casual #9 birdshot.  The other thing that had me wondering was how reliable could a single-stack magazine of a rimmed cartridge be?  Lovers of the Mosin Nagant know the pains of rimmed cartridges and how they can prevent themselves from feeding if improperly loaded.  We see the same issue in higher-capacity .22lr magazines.

Gas-operated shotguns can be tricky.  If the ammunition doesn’t generate the right amount of pressure at the right rate the gun doesn’t always function as intended.  It’s for this reason that we intentionally took another gas gun out of it’s comfort range.  You may recall that when we tested another gun from ATI, the MP-40P, we violated the intended load by 50% mass in both directions.  Did ATI get it right?  See the video below and decide for yourself.

It is worth mentioning that ATI also developed the proper buffer and spring rate for this gun to run.  If swapping this upper onto another lower the spring and buffer will also need to be transferred.  We’ll have a closer-look tabletop review up soon.  For more information about this impressive addition to your AR-senal see their product website here, and specs below.

  • Chambered for 2 1/2″ .410ga shells
  • Featuring an 18.5″ barrel
  • Custom 13″ keymod rail,
  • gas operated, short stroke balanced piston system.
  • Omni Hybrid 410 upper receiver is built to regular AR spec and can be installed on most mil-spec lower receivers
  • Weight: 6.5lbs
  • BBL: 18.5″
  • Stock: M4
  • Rail: 13” custom keymod 
  • Mag: 5 round capacity, 15 round magazines available
  • Assembled in Summerville, SC by American Tactical!

A Coffee Mug for Those Who Don’t Make Excuses (From My Friends at Spotter Up)

Spotter Up coffee mugs are in! If you like coffee and want a mug that is different than check this out. Our mugs are 14 + ounces Functional, beautiful, and are hand-thrown stoneware. Each one is also individually created by hand so that no two are exactly alike. The unique clay body with materials mined in OH, IN and KY, is combined in St. Paul, MN and high-fired to 2165º F (cone 6) which means unparalleled durability.

“It’s not that so many men are afraid of dying, it’s that they are afraid of living because living requires risk taking, it requires choice making and that petrifies many young men. Indecisive men are frozen out simply by having too much freedom from too many choices which paralyzes them from doing more with the options at hand. May as well not live. Only dead men lack desire.” Life owes you nothing. Get out there, and kick ass. Spot a solution to fix your malaise.

Stand atop a hill one summer evening and let the hot wind press upon your face as if you are turning away from the eternal past. Look now into the coming future. Do not forget the night is meant for sorcery and magic happens then. Stop fighting this damnable warfare with yourself and let go of understanding. Believe. Take account of your assets and liabilities and throw them away, take account of the passing seconds and minutes and hours and realize each moment gives you the opportunity to start over. Opportunities are abundant but you must defy the science that tells you what you want is impossible to achieve and now you must become supernatural in your thoughts and deeds. Find a Way or Make One.


Spotter Up Tactical provides credible and applicable information in support of individuals becoming the best Chessmen they can be. A Chessman is an expert strategist, who trains rigorously, and can take action(s) to bypass threats. Becoming tactically sound in anything worthwhile requires sacrifice, discipline and a long-term plan.

Spotter Up believes in finding solutions to problems.  ‘Find a Way or Make One’. Excuses are never made.

About the Logo

A spotter is trained to look for things. In our Spotter Up logo, our Spotter is the omniscient strategist who looks at problems through a lens of opportunity. He sits atop his tower and holds command over the 360 degrees around him, as represented by the eight arrows, (six in view) in our black and white circular logo. From his line of sight, he can see around, above, below and beyond a problem. He isn’t stuck using the same movements, as a rook chess piece would do, because he breaks the rules when the rules plainly don’t make sense. He capably navigates himself around threats, and can go anywhere.

A Spotter is the known as the  consummate Chessman. He identifies issues, gathers information on the threats, devises a plan, and executes it successfully. In heraldry, the skull represents victory of life over death, and our spotter tower is a fortress that is a testament to his ability. Sometimes success is achieved by looking inside rather than beyond, and it is gained by listening to what you ‘know’. He is the sentinel that watches over others, himself, and learns in order that he can point the way out of danger.

AUT INVENIUM VIAM AUT FACIUM-I will either find a way or I will make one.

Legend has it that the military commander Hannibal said this to his generals after they told him it was impossible to cross the Alps on elephants.

*The views and opinions expressed on this website are solely those of the original authors and contributors. These views and opinions do not necessarily represent those of Spotter Up Magazine, the administrative staff, and/or any/all contributors to this site.

Brought to you by the dudes at Spotter Up

Useless Deer Hunting Tips

I’m a newbie deer hunter who has not yet been successful. This year I want to try harder, so in addition to using a game camera I’ve been reading up on more tips and advice.

I’m just here to say that from my perspective a lot of this “advice” is completely useless to me. 

A few examples:

One online article says that this particular expert hunter uses 26 trail cameras. Yes – Twenty. Six. Uhhhhh, let’s just say that this is NOT in the freaking budget, okay guys? 

The same piece says that this same expert surrounds each scrape he finds with 3 to 5 tree stands. Are you freaking kidding me? Not only is that not in the budget either, but I also don’t have a small army of hunting elves to set all this stuff up for me. Just wrestling with a pop-up blind by myself was giving me conniptions. It’s good nobody was watching and the trail cam wasn’t set up yet, I don’t need that kind of blackmail fodder floating around out there.

Here’s another clue – I drive a Subaru. I don’t have an F-3whatever truck with trailer to haul a lifelike faux tree stump blind out to the site. The best I can do is sitting my butt up against an actual tree stump.

To top all of that off, I’m afraid of heights. I’ve looked, but I have not yet seen a single tree stand for sale that is under the height of Oh-My-Gawd. My idea of a comfortable tree stand has four walls, a roof and an elevator, okay? There is not a single way in hades that yours truly is going to install and use a tree stand all by herself. Yet the hunting tips articles are chock-full of tree stand advice. Here’s another clue – How about no? Can I use an upstairs bedroom window instead?

Then there are the scent-control suggestions. The choices are dizzying. Do I want to smell like “nothing”? Or do I want to smell like apples? Or dirt? Or acorns? I didn’t even know that acorns had a smell. Maybe they’re making that up so that they can sell me distilled water in a camo squeeze bottle, and then snicker at the newb.

There are also apparently scents that come from actual deer. I don’t think I want to know how they go about collecting the various gland scents. Of course I eat steak without wanting to know anything about cow insemination either. I know enough gross things about people, I don’t need to know about glandular animal details too. 

How about camo? What pattern is “best”? Apparently the pattern the tip-giver is shilling for at the moment. I’ve seen the photo ads with the guy standing up with the bow at full draw, dressed in head-to-toe camo that all matches and blends perfectly with the tree he’s in. But here’s the thing – I can’t afford three or four sets of camo to match every season and environment. It’s just not going to happen. I’ve got what I’ve got – marketing be damned.

Here’s a final thought on all of that.

I know that my grandfather hunted in decades-old unwashed red wool plaid that likely smelled of cigarettes, bacon grease and outhouse.

Do they sell that scent in a bottle? Just curious.

Perhaps I’ll stick with the “smell like nothing spray”, throw a few apples in my pockets and call it good. But I’ve still gotta set up a ground blind. Anybody know where I can get a good deal on a set of hunting elves?

Appeals court upholds Remington settlement despite low claims rate

Patrons scoping out Remington rifles at the company’s booth during the 2018 NRA convention in Dallas. (Photo: Daniel Terrill/

A federal appellate court upheld a settlement agreement between Remington Arms and class representatives despite concerns that too few gun owners participated in an effort to recall an allegedly defective Remington trigger design.

“The record makes plain that the settlement agreement was reached following meaningful discovery and investigation by class counsel and arm’s length negotiations between the parties,” the three-judge panel said in their opinion. “We conclude that the settlement was fair, reasonable, and adequate, and we affirm the district court’s order approving the settlement.”

The challenge targeted a Missouri federal court’s approval of the settlement in which Remington agreed to pay $2,500 to each class representative, $12.5 million in attorney’s fees and $474,892.75 in expenses.

While the lead groups involved found the agreement satisfactory, some representatives argued the payout should have been more given that an estimated 7.5 million allegedly defective rifles are in circulation. They also argued that the company launched an ineffective notice plan to market the recall because the effort to repair the defect covered less than 1 percent of the estimated figure.

The panel said they disagreed with arguments that the district court abused its discretion by “approving a class settlement that utilized an inadequate notice plan, and approving a settlement that does not provide adequate relief to the class.” They added that when both parties learned the claims rate was suspiciously low, the court ordered them to supplement the effort with additional measures.

“In the end, the low claim submission rate, while not ideal, is not necessarily indicative of a deficient notice plan. It is apparent that many class members received notice, but opted not to participate for any number of reasons,” the panel said. “Perhaps they are satisfied with their firearms and see no reason to submit a claim.”

Remington’s Walker Fire Control trigger design was at the center of the class action and has been for many other cases as well. The design has been shown to allow a firearm to discharge without the pull of the trigger and has been linked to cases of injury and even death.

Meopta TGA 75 collapsible spotting scope

Meopta USA’s new TGA 75 collapsible spotting scope is engineered for hunters. The classic draw-tube design of this rugged spotting scope allows the length to be shortened from 14.8 inches when fully extended to 9.8 inches when collapsed. It features a 75mm objective lens, with multi-coated, premium-grade optics to ensure superior light transmission and edge-to-edge clarity. Meopta’s proprietary MeoShield and MeoBright lens coatings protect external lens surfaces from abrasions and scratches, and enhance light transmission. It has a rubber-armored, aluminum body built to withstand the toughest terrain and is available with three interchangeable eyepieces: 30x WA-R (wide angle ranging), 30x WA (wide angle) or 20-60x zoom. The TGA 75 body retails for $899.95, while the eye pieces sell for $399.95 each. The TGA 75 is shockproof and water-resistant, and can be mounted on a tripod. Weight without eyepiece is 44.1 oz, and close focus range is 13.9 feet. Tripod thread is 1/4” x 20 TPI and dioptric correction is +/- 5. Contact Meopta USA Sports Optics, Dept. OT; Tel.: (800) 828-8928; Web:

Medieval Hand Guns: A Demonstration with Hartley’s Companie

The earliest surviving firearm in Europe was found in Estonia and dates back to 1396. Hand held firearms were employed by 15th century armies. They were very unreliable and actually less powerful than bows at the time. Their advantage was that to train a soldier to point a gun at a target was far easier and faster than to train him to use bows. The psychological of smoke and noise scares horses and soldiers.

This video shows how 15th century hand held guns were used in a demonstration with the rein-actors from Hartley’s Companie at Weald & Downland.

Want to know more:


FAL vs. G3 Meme War

Fighting broke out in the early hours between two fan factions of two middle 20th century battle rifles.

Proponents of the FN FAL and the H&K G3 rallied to sides on the digital battle space.

Shots were exchanged in good humor.

Casualties are reported on both sides.

But how are they actually?

Ehh.. both had issues.

Proof that that we need to acknowledge the new true battle rifle king. FN’s SCAR17…

Hail to the King…




Well… here we go again.

Spotter Up Review: FirstSpear First On Plate Carrier

In the tactical world, there are companies whose names proceed the product itself. Some for good reasons, some for not so good. One of such companies is FirstSpear. They have a reputation for innovation, quality and product designed and optimized for the user as opposed to what is easiest for production.

The Basics:

In their vast array of plate carrier options exists the First On plate carrier. At a quick glance, the First On carrier is minimalistic. The chest side of the carrier offers two magazine pouches and a sewn on general purpose pouch. There are loops just under the lapel area on either side of the over the shoulder straps to secure a handheld microphone radio attachment. The carrier offers a medium sized Velcro area on the chest and larger Velcro area on the back for identifying patches.

The First On over the shoulder straps utilize hook and loop Velcro type material to secure. They offer a large contact patch between the two sides of the Velcro which help with creating a universal fit while maintaining the integrity of the level of secureness associated with Velcro straps. Straps around the side of the body use FirstSpear’s trademarked Tube clips. When you see these clips for the first time, their manipulation can seem a little wonky. After a few minutes of familiarization, they become as manageable as any other clipping mechanism. The only issue I encountered with the side straps is that once the plate carrier is dawned, they are not easy to adjust. It’s critically important that the carrier is adjusted to fit prior to being “patrol car ready”.

The Gear:

The elastic magazine retention straps keep the magazine secure in place. Large nylon loops are affixed to the magazine fasteners, zippers on the general purpose pouch, and Tube clips to ensure their easy manipulation with gloved hands. A sewn on general purpose pouch offers enough space to contain an individual first aid kit (IFAK) including a tourniquet, chest seal, Israeli bandage and hemostatic gauze.

Putting It On

While dawned, the First On kit weighs basically as much as the items adorning it. It has been designed to be lightweight and minimal. I appreciate the minimal design of the kit for what it was designed for, a first responder’s response to a critical incident where more ballistic protection is needed. This is slipped on, buckled in and ready to go in a matter of seconds. It’s relatively low profile and footprint allows for easy storage in the front seat of a patrol car. The low profiled nature of the First On kit allows for full mobility when wearing it. Shooting from standing to kneeling to prone is unrestricted and easily accomplished. Using my shooter cut steel plates, I was able to punch my weapon out on target without being pinched or prohibited by the plate carrier.


This system enters the market of budget priced active shooter response kits for first responders. The carrier has capacity for 10×12 shooter cut plates and SAPI plates so long as they are a thickness of one inch or less. This means that in a low profile system, you are able to armor up to rifle level ballistic protection, bring more high caliber ammunition and life saving measures with you into a critical incident. The First On carrier comes in at a price of $114.72, comparable to similar carriers but carries the FirstSpear brand name quality as well as their lifetime warranty.

Wrapping Up:

As a system designed for a very niche purpose, the First On plate carrier is lightweight, low profile, made of high quality material and well constructed. I can appreciate it’s lightweight, minimalistic design, however, with carrier of this type, I would still like the option to add more implements to my set up. Having the option to add a dump pouch, handgun magazines or other tactical accouterment would have optimized this system. As it arrives at your door now, it is good. It’s just not perfect.

Let’s rank it!

Fitment: 5/5

Utility: 4/5

Storage: 3/5

Maneuverability: 5/5

Weight: 5/5

Overall: 4.4/5

For more info on the First On Plate Carrier or to purchase one, click here!

Material Disclosure

I received this product as a courtesy from the manufacturer via Spotter Up so I could test it and give my honest feedback. I am not bound by any written, verbal, or implied contract to give this product a good review. All opinions are my own and are based off my personal experience with the product.

*The views and opinions expressed on this website are solely those of the original authors and contributors. These views and opinions do not necessarily represent those of Spotter Up Magazine, the administrative staff, and/or any/all contributors to this site.

*The views and opinions expressed on this website are solely those of the original authors and contributors. These views and opinions do not necessarily represent those of Spotter Up Magazine, the administrative staff, and/or any/all contributors to this site.

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