Top 5 Brands For The Best Suitable Concealed Carry Holsters

Buying a gun in itself can be a tedious and consuming task considering the variety of guns and ammunition available in the market. And even after you have made the choice and purchased one, your work doesn’t stop there. 

The next step to select the best suitable holster to carry your firearm, and to avoid being overtly conspicuous, you should opt for a concealed carry holster. There are multiple types even within concealed carry holsters. For instance, there are IWB (inside the waistband), OWB (outside the waistband), ankle holsters, belly bands, shoulder holsters and more. Each of them has their own pros and cons, as we’ll see in the list below. 

Comparison Table

What Makes A Good Carry Holster

holster

Before you get to choose the ideal concealed carry holster for your gun, you need to know what makes a carry holster the best. Here are certain aspects you should look for in a holster while making your decision:

  • The holster should be made of a robust material, like leather or Kydex, and it should cover the trigger to prevent any unintended discharge.
  • The holster should be sturdy enough to not let the gun fall out of place. In other words, it should have solid retention.
  • It should be good at concealing the gun since you don’t want to be out on the road with your gun being on public display. The best concealed carry holsters are usually IWBs, but make sure that it is not uncomfortable.
  • The holster should have a strong combat grip. You should be able to reach your gun easily and fire it instantly in case of an attack. 

Types Of Concealed Holsters

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Sumtop Glock 43 IWB Holster, Polymer Concealed Carry Inside Waistband...
  • Inside Waistband Conceal Carry Gun Holster is made of durable, high-tech, black polymer material that is both heat and...
  • Comfortable & concealable, good for every day carry. Easy to access and draw your pistol without impediment.
  • Special belt clip design ensures the holster stay firmly when drawing pistols, convenient to attach or remove from belt....

The IWB, or inside the waistband, carry holsters offer the best concealment since the gun is essentially extremely close to your body and fully hidden from public view. It does seem a little less comfortable since you will obviously feel the gun poking, but with the right material and placement you can carry it off with ease. The appendix holsters, among the IWB ones, offer the best concealment.


The OWB, or outside the waistband, is the type of holster that stays on the outer side of your lowers. It is not very concealing since the holster is outside but it’s a lot more comfortable since there is nothing pinching you inside. The OWB holsters also have a better grip on the gun since they are on the outside and provide unrestricted access to your hand to reach the fun. They usually take the support of the belt to stay in position.

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Ultimate Ankle Holster For Concealed Carry by ComfortTac | Fits Glock...
  • EXTREMELY COMFORTABLE - We use a neoprene band that is comfortable even when worn against your skin unlike elastic...
  • FITS WIDE RANGE OF GUNS - Our elastic holster fits a wide range of guns from micro pistols to subcompact, compact, and...
  • FAST SILENT DRAW - The retention strap features a metal snap for a fast and quiet draw in any situation. No Velcro to...

When you need to have a gun as a backup firearm, ankle holsters can be your savior since they are as they are named, placed at the ankle and completely concealed thanks to your trousers or pants. No one can make out that you have a gun unless you raise your trousers to show them or if you are wearing super tight pants that show the holster’s outline. However, they can be really uncomfortable and hard to get to in case of emergency

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ComfortTac Ultimate Belly Band Holster for Concealed Carry, Black
  • One size fits all - neoprene material stretches to fit up to a 44" belly. (Measure hips or belly not pant size) Soft and...
  • Surgical grade elastic holster fits small subcompact, compact, and even full size pistols and revolvers. 380, 9mm, 40...
  • Can be worn inside the waistband, outside the waistband, cross body, appendix position, 5 O'clock position (behind hip),...

In case you do not wear a belt, belly band holsters can be an option. As the name suggests, they come with a band that wraps around your belly and holds the gun. With this type of holster, though, you need to make sure that you buy the band that covers the entire gun and does not make your body heat up.

Apart from the above, there is a shoulder holster too that you might have seen some law enforcement agents in the previous years wear.

Top 5 Concealed Carry Holsters

Let’s take a look at the best concealed carry holsters available in the market today.

This is one of the best-selling concealed carry holsters. It is an IWB holster made using neoprene and conforms to the shape of your gun. The holster offers great and adjustable retention to make sure your gun stays put. In fact, the retention shell is customized as per the gun you want to carry in it, so there is no question of not fitting.

Here’s what you can expect from the Cloak Tuck 3.0 IWB Holster by the American brand:

  • Adjustable retention.
  • Made from waterproof neoprene backpad.
  • Adjustable belt clips for ride height and cant angle to get the perfect carry position of the holster.
  • Zero break-in time needed due to a firm yet flexible base.
  • Thermoelastic polymer top surface that keeps the gun in place but also looks good.
  • The retention shell is customized according to the pistol you carry in the holster.
  • Lifetime warranty by Alien Gear along with a lifelong supply of retention shells.
  • Right and left-hand orientation.

The Alien Gear carry holster is available in multiple sizes to suit whatever gun you possess. Also, the brand offers a 30-day test drive facility. In case you want to return the holster within 30 days of your purchase, the seller will buy it at the same price.

The Alien Gear Holsters Cloak Tuck 3.0 IWB Holster comes at an affordable price, available for purchase on Amazon at $. It is comfortable and offers great concealment, along with good grip and retention.

CYA Supply Co. IWB Holster Fits: Glock 43 - Veteran Owned Company -...
  • Fits only: Glock 43 - With No Light/Laser Attachments (Right Hand Draw Only)
  • IWB Holster - Inside The Waistband - Easily Adjustable Retention Pressure & Carry Angle (Cant) 0-15 Degrees
  • Made of .08" Thickness Boltaron Material - Belt Clip 1.5" wide - All Stainless Steel Black Powder Coat Hardware

CYA Supply Co. is a reputed and popular name in the industry. The CYA Supply IWB Holster is designed to fit the Smith & Wesson M&P Shield 9MM/.40 S&W gun and for right hand draw only. 

Made from the Boltaron thermoplastic, the holster has good friction and retention to ensure that the pistol stays in place securely. The material is also highly durable and sturdy, along with being resistant to chemicals and wear and tear. Here’s what you should know about this best-selling concealed carry holster: 

  • Built using durable Boltaron material which works better than Kydex in protecting against impacts.
  • Cant angle adjustable to 0 to 15 degrees using the Allen key that comes with the holster.
  • Adjustable retention using the Allen key to adjust the screws in the trigger guard.
  • Only suitable for Smith & Wesson M&P Shield 9MM/.40 S&W guns.
  • Sweat guard that covers the side of the holster.
  • Comes with an audible retention lock for better protection.

Made in the USA, the CYA Supply IWB Holster comes also offers 4 different colors - flat dark earth, carbon fiber, black and teal blue. The holster is available on Amazon for a minimum of $, which makes it a great buy if you possess the suitable gun.

IWB Gun Holster by Houston - ECO Leather Concealed Carry Soft Material...
  • Strong Metal Clip for Maximum Retention
  • Safe, Easy and Comfortable to Use as Concealment
  • Triple Stitched for Strength and Durability

This IWB holster by Houston is highly popular due to the quality it packs along with being extremely cost effective. Available for a right-hand draw as well as left-hand draw, this eco-leather holster has a suede lining that is resilient to frequent wear and tear.

The holster has good retention and allows for a quick and easy draw with a strong grip. It is lightweight and fits most of the compact size pistols, while usually used for the Glock guns. Here’s what you need to know about the Houston IWB Gun Holster:

  • Fits most sub-compact guns, including Glock 19, Springfield XDs, CT9 BERSA Thunder 9mm / .40 Caliber / .45 Cal and more.
  • Available for both right and left-hand draw.
  • Waterproof and sweat proof.
  • Comfortable enough thanks to its lightweight and compact size.
  • Durable and resilient to wear and tear.
  • Uses passive retention system for a prompt draw and easy handling.
  • Suede lined interior and eco leather exterior for better protection of the gun.
  • Has a strong, flexible metal clip to ensure the gun is securely placed.

The Houston IWB Gun Holster is a highly comfortable concealed carry holster. It is double stitched to ensure greater durability. However, it is not suitable for larger sized guns but can be used for almost all types of sub-compact pistols.

The holster is available on Amazon for an extremely low price of $, for either of the left or right-hand draw. If you are looking for a holster that is compact and lightweight, easy to carry but offers maximum concealment for your sub-compact gun, the  Houston IWB Gun Holster is a great option.

Niniso Belly Band Holster for Concealed Carry - Fits Gun Smith and...
  • Quality made: Surgical grade elastic material, durable and flexible, non-toxic/safe
  • Can be worn inside the waistband, outside the waistband, cross body, appendix position, 5 o'clock position (behind hip),...
  • (Right hand available) - fits glock, smith and Wesson, bodyguard, m&p shield, sig Sauer, ruger

Thunderbolt holsters are known for their comfort and sweat-free material. The Concealed Carry Belly Band Holster by the brand is made using the military-grade neoprene that prevents overheating and irritation due to sweat. It is highly comfortable, for both men and women.

This concealed carry holster wraps around your waist easily, or even anywhere else you want to. It has minimum print, i.e, does not let itself be outlined against the clothes you wear and is constructed in a way that it can carry almost all types of guns.

Here’s what you need to know before opting for the Concealed Carry Belly Band Holster  by Thunderbolt:

  • Elastic strap waist wrap that hugs the body comfortably and keeps the gun in place.
  • The wrap is comfortable enough to be positioned on the waist, the hip or the abdomen, whatever the holder prefers.
  • Made using sweat-free and breathable military grade neoprene.
  • Fits both men and women up to 50 inches in waist size and can be adjusted in case of reduced waist size.
  • Uses a Velcro loop to hold the wrap tightly and prevent the gun from falling out.
  • Extra pockets to carry spare clips.
  • The band offers additional back support when positioned on the back.
  • Elastic snap fastener retention system for a quick and easy draw.
  • Fits compact and full-size handguns as well as several sub-compact sized pistols.
  • Both right and left-hand draw available. 

The concealed carry holster can be worn on the back, hip, waist or abdomen and works well to prevent the body from heating due to the holster. It is available for purchase on Amazon for a highly affordable price of $.

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BLACKHAWK! SERPA CQC Concealment Holster - Matte Finish
  • The Blackhawk MT SERPA CQC Holster Right Glock 26/27/33 features the patented SERPA lock engages the
  • It comes with both belt loop and paddle platforms
  • It also features a full firing grip for draw and immediate retention upon reholstering

Built using the patented SERPA automatic lock system, this Blackhawk holster is made to ensure maximum protection for your gun and avoid any misfire. It is structured to allow drawing out the gun with maximum ease and promptness.

The SERPA concealment holster has an extremely strong grip along with a passive retention system with adjustable screws. The handling is smooth and the holster comes with the belt loop and the paddle platform.

Take a look at the specific features of the Blackhawk SERPA CQC Concealment Holster:

  • An amazing master grip that allows quick drawing.
  • SERPA auto-lock for enhanced protection of the trigger.
  • Audible click on re-holstering the gun to ensure that the gun has been securely placed.
  • Easy and smooth draw, available for the right as well as left hand.
  • It fits Glock 17, 22 and 31 pistols.
  • Adjustable cant angle for comfortable carrying.
  • The package includes belt and paddle attachments.
  • Instant retention on holstering back the gun.
  • It can be positioned on the shoulder and other tactical positions.

The Blackhawk SERPA CQC Concealment Holster is made to fit certain types of guns, as mentioned above. It has a great fit and is highly durable and comfortable as well. It does feel a bit bulky, but the advanced grip and the excellent retention make up for it.

The holster is available in multiple colors, including black, coyote tan, foliage green and matte black. The price differs according to the size you buy, with over 60 options of sizes to choose from. This concealed carry holster is available on Amazon at a starting price of approximately $.

The Conclusion

Even apart from the top 5 concealed carry holsters reviewed above, there are numerous others that fit the bill depending on your requirement. The main aspect to keep in mind is how well the holster performs and how easy it is to handle in case of an attack. Not to mention the fact that the holster should provide maximum protection to prevent any mishap.

The choice of the holster is highly subjective. The concealed carry holsters mentioned in the list basically cover almost all types of guns and revolvers along with multiple body positioning options, at the same time being cost effective. With every holster, though, you need to practice using it enough to bring fluidity while drawing from it.

Know your gun and do maximum research on the performance and the reliability of the holster before making your final choice.

270s VS 308s: Rifle Overview And Ammo Comparisons

The moment you decide you need a rifle, you get bombarded with the enormous array of choices of calibers available in the market. For whatever purpose you want to use the rifle for — self-defense, hunting, target practice or military — there are numerous options of cartridges to choose from.

When it comes to hunting, you will easily find yourself in a major conflict — whether to choose the .270 or the .308, an ever going argument and an evergreen hot topic of discussion among shooters. Choosing the right cartridge is vital since your rifle will be customized to hold the same, and your ability to shoot will depend on it.

Both, .270 and .308, have a long-standing reputation for their performance and have a loyal base of customers, including staunch loyalists as well as flexible ones who are willing to try newer variations of cartridges.

If you are looking to add a rifle to your collection for hunting purposes and are also under dilemma about deciding between the .270 and .308, read on to know what makes them different and which one has aspects better suited for your requirements.


.270 Winchester: An Overview


Introduced in 1925 by the firearms giant Winchester Repeating Arms Company, the .270 Win was designed primarily for hunting purposes. It takes after the famous .30-13 cartridge. The .30-13 was also the parent case for .30-06 Springfield. 

The .270 features a bullet diameter of 7 mm while a base diameter of 11.9 mm. The overall length of the cartridge is about 3.3 inches, while the case length is 2.5 inches and a lot longer than the .308 Win. The cartridge gained universal base due to the writings of the prominent firearms writer Jack O’Connor.

The .270 Win was revolutionary because it could be used for multiple hunting needs. It can shoot short and as well long ranges, and small as well as bulky targets due to the weight of the bullets it carries. The weight ranges from 120 to 160 grains, and the trajectory is almost flat due to long bullets and more case capacity which helps it in gaining more velocity.

The ammo used for .270 is easily available in almost every store due to its widespread usage, most popular being by Hornady and Federal Premium.

 

.308 Winchester: An Overview


Introduced in 1952 in the U.S, the .308 Winchester was primarily designed for the military and saw it being used to derive the 7.62x51 NATO which was used for a short while during the Vietnam War in the M14. 

The .308 Winchester has since been used for ordinary purposes like hunting and target shooting. It features a bullet diameter of 7.8 mm and a base diameter of 11.9 mm, same as that of .270. The overall length of the cartridge is shorter at 2.8 inches while the case length is about 2 inches.

The shorter case length makes the cartridges fall under the category of short action calibers. It can take projectiles in the range of 125 to 180 grains, and even beyond. The heavier weight is what makes it so deadly and widely popular among hunters since it has more penetration and can do more damage. 

Due to its wide usage, the ammo for the .308 Winchester is also commonly available in the ammunition stores everywhere, the most popular ammo for the cartridge being Nosler Ballistic Tip, Federal Premium, etc.

.270 Winchester VS .308 Winchester

One has its origins in the military while the other was manufactured for hunting. However, time saw both these long-standing cartridges in the same arena and with a huge respective loyal user base.

To know what sets them apart, let’s check out how they compare against each other in terms of ballistics, recoil, penetration, shooting accuracy, price and more.

Ballistics Performance

Ordinarily, the .308 bullets are heavier than the .270 ones, ranging as high 180 grains as compared to 160 grains for the .270. Although, there are some ammo manufacturers that do make heavier bullets for the .270, the most recognized and tested ones are the lighter projectiles.

If you are targeting a large kill over a long range, about 400 yards, the .308 perform better due to higher stopping power due to a heavier projectile. The stopping power of the .270 is lesser to a lighter bullet.

The .270 as well as the .308, both have the capacity to deliver 1000 pounds of pressure at a distance of 400 yards. However, if you are aiming for a longer distance, you might want to give the edge to .270 since it has a higher velocity due to a lighter and longer bullet, along with a flat trajectory.

Therefore, both of these cartridges have their work cut out. If you are aiming at a large target, like a bear, within 300-400 yards, you opt for the .308 Win due to higher stopping power. But, if you are aiming for longer ranges and a small to medium-size target, you go for the .270 since the higher case capacity makes for more muzzle velocity and a flat course. 

Recoil

When you are using a rifle for hunting, understanding the recoil is absolutely crucial since it can make or break your game. The lesser the recoil, the lesser time it takes to reacquire the target. Especially with the inexperienced shooters, it’s important to choose the ammo with lower recoil for a better target.

There isn’t a very significant difference between the .270 Winchester and .308 Winchester when it comes to recoil. You’ll feel the kick with both of them, essentially. In fact, .270 has a sharper kick than the .308.

Yet, the .308 has more recoil due to a heavier bullet, especially the 180 grains projectile, which also has higher muzzle velocity. Neither of the cartridges, though, has a recoil that might make you drop your gun from the force. For the experienced shooters, it will be a normal level.

To be on the safer side, if you are a beginner shooter, choose a bullet with the lightest caliber so that the recoil is also lesser.

Penetration

The penetration of a bullet depends on its sectional density, the design as well as the velocity. More the sectional density, the deeper the bullet will penetrate.

Different bullet weights and types will have different penetration capacities. For a 150 grain projectile used in .270, the penetration is deeper due to a small bullet diameter which helps in focusing the force on a smaller area and hence exert itself more. The bullet diameter for the .308 is about 0.3 inches while that of the .270 is about 0.277 inches. 

On an average, though, the .308s usually have more penetration since it uses heavier bullets which have more sectional density.

Shooting Accuracy

While shooting accuracy is essentially in the hands of the shooter, the ammo used definitely reflects on the aim. 

Since the .270 uses lighter and longer bullets that help in creating a flatter trajectory, the accuracy of shooting beyond 400 yards range is more for .270 than .308. However, the .308 is not really far behind. Within the 500 yards range, there will essentially be no difference in the accuracy offered by either cartridge and will depend on your experience and aim.

Due to a lighter recoil, the .270 does have an edge when it comes to better and stable target shooting. However, it also has a sharper kick, and there isn’t much difference in the recoil by .308. So, the shooting accuracy largely depends on how well you handle the gun.

Ammo Used

The bullets for the .308 tend to be heavier than the ones for .270. Typically, the bullets for .308 Winchester range between 125 to 180 grains, while the ones for .270 Winchester range in the 120 to 160 grains.

Depending on your purpose and the range of your hunting, some of the best and most popular rounds for the .270 include Remington Core-Lokt 150 and 130 grain, Hornady 150 grains, Winchester Super-X Power Point 130 and 150 grains and the Federal Premium 140 grains. If you are looking for a heavier bullet for .270, the Federal Vital-Shok Nosler Partition 150 grains is a great option due to its heavier size that is suitable for taking down larger targets as well.

For the .308 Winchester, the most popular round used in hunting is the Nosler Ballistic Tip 165 grains, which has the capacity to take the medium as well as large targets due to a higher caliber. It does more damage due to the expansion of the bullet on hitting the target. For more long range shooting, the Hornady 168 grains is also a widely used ammo for .308. Others include Remington Core-Lokt in 150 and 180 grains, Federal Premium in 168 and 175 grains.

Price And Availability

.270 Winchester and .308 Winchester, both are popular enough to have their ammo widely and easily available in the market. The price varies according to the manufacturer as well as the availability, yet, there isn’t too wide a difference in the prices. On an average, the prices for the .308 will be more than those of .270s. 

A case of Federal Vital-Shok Ballistic Tip 150 grains for .308 will cost you about $31.79, while a case of Federal Vital-Shok Nosler Partition 150 grains for the .270 will cost you about $20.49. 20 rounds of Federal Sierra GameKing BTSP 150 grains for the .270, on the other hand, will cost you $30.99, while a case of Winchester Super-X 180 grains will set you back by $21.99.

The price varies according to the brand, the weight of the bullet and a lot of other factors. The difference isn’t wide enough to tilt your decision in either ammo’s favor, therefore, go for the one that suits your requirements the best. 

Product

.308 Winchester

.270 Winchester

Image

.3018 Winchester
.270 Winchester

Ballistics Performance

Preferable over a long range

The stopping power is lesser to a lighter bullet

Recoil

Has more recoil due to a heavier bullet

Has a sharper kick

Shooting Accuracy

The accuracy of shooting beyond 400 yards range is good

The accuracy of shooting beyond 400 yards range is good

Ammo Used

125 to 180 grains

120 to 160 grains

Availability

The Conclusion

Both the cartridges are a great choice in terms of hunting rounds. It’s not a black and white area where you can simply say one outperforms the other since both of them have their own distinct characteristics as well as similarities with each other.

When it comes to hitting within 300-400 yards at a medium-sized target, both .270 and .308 stand equal since the force produced is almost the same and both have the required stopping power.

For targets beyond that range, the .270 has an edge due to the lighter bullets that have a flat trajectory and higher velocity. For smaller targets as well the .270 should hold a preference since the .308 uses heavy bullets and its stopping power and penetration is too high for a small game.

The best option would be to be flexible enough to use both in specific situations. Take your pick according to your purposes. If you are a beginner at hunting and are looking for shooting smaller targets, .270 should be your choice. However, if you are seasoned shooter looking to shoot larger games, .308 might be more suitable for you.

Ear Protection For Shooting: 5 Methods – Max Blagg

Ear Protection While Shooting

Having a good sense of hearing is imperative in life as, without sound, we would not be able to carry out tasks effectively on a day to day basis. Ear protection for shooting is extremely important because guns create a high decibel sound when fired which may lead to hearing loss in the long run.

It is not possible to reverse the effects of hearing loss once they set in because it is permanent. Therefore, it is very important to take care of your ears while you are out for a hunt or during the course of regular shooting practice.

There are a lot of factors to be considered when it comes to choosing the right protective gear for your ears while you go out for hunting as a shooter is exposed to the sound of pistols and big-bore rifles which can create a noise higher than 175 dB.

In this article, we will take you through the various causes by which guns can affect your hearing along with the need to protect your ears and using the right gear to prevent hearing loss.

Guns And Hearing Loss

woman practicing to shoot

The sound is measured with the help of a unit termed as decibel (dB). The higher the decibel, greater is the amount of noise generated. While a conversation between two or more people can generate a sound of about 60 dB, the sound created by guns of different types can vary between the range of 156 - 160 dB which is even greater than that of a jet plane taking off!

People who use guns regularly are more prone to suffer from hearing loss and other hearing-related issues such as tinnitus. Even the reverberation caused by a gunshot is capable of causing hearing loss to the shooter as well as to the bystanders.

Many guns come loaded with a recoil compensator and other add-ons. These accessories create an even greater sound and cause more damage to the ears. Typically, the ear which is closer to the muzzle experiences more damage than the other ear since it is not protected by the head shadow.

Research has proved that a prolonged exposure to noise levels above 85 dB can cause a permanent hearing damage which is also known as a noise-induced hearing loss. Our ears are equipped with fine hairs that are responsible for stimulating the auditory nerve fibers. High sound levels destroy these fine hairs leading to hearing loss and associated damage.

Problems Associated With Hearing Loss

man's ear

There are various problems associated with not being able to hear well. If you are a hunter, then a hearing loss will lead to problems during hunting and you may not be able to concentrate well on your target due to noise issues and lose the game.

People with a noise-induced hearing loss find it difficult to listen to high-frequency sounds which makes communicating and socializing with people more difficult and challenging. Such people face more problems while communicating with women and children as their sounds fall in the high-frequency range.

The second problem associated with hearing loss is tinnitus. We have all experienced a whooshing or buzzing sound in one or both of our ears for a few seconds sometime during over lives. Imagine how frustrating it would be if that sound never went away! Tinnitus is exactly what we are referring to and the sounds could be low or high pitched.

Hearing loss is irreparable and irreversible once it sets in. Thus, it is very important to take the help of appropriate protective gear that would help to keep your ears from harm and provide adequate noise control.

Need For Protecting Your Ears

We have already covered the part on how you could suffer from a noise-induced hearing loss and other associated risks if you stay exposed to high levels of noise. It has been noted that only 50% of people who go out for shooting and hunting actually use the protective gear designed to protect their ears.

Repeated and continuous use of firearms is capable of inducing a permanent hearing loss over the course of time. Noise levels of 140 dB and above are extremely harmful to the human ear and therefore it is necessary to care for your ears while you are out hunting.

If you are target practicing indoors, the damage is even greater as sound has the capability of ricocheting among the walls and resonating for a long time when compared to outdoor shooting. Large rifles can produce a sound that is approximately 25% more than that of the other guns.

Professional shooters stand the risk of losing some part of their hearing capabilities in the long run despite using protective gear if it is not worn correctly. At the same time, one ear may face greater damage than the other based on its proximity to the muzzle.

Types Of Noise Reduction Devices

Loud noises are harmful to our ears and can cause hearing loss if we stay exposed to such high decibels for a long period of time. In order to prevent that from happening, we must take good care of our ears while shooting.

There are many types of protective gear available in the market today that help in reducing the background noise and provide good protection for your ears. These include gear like earmuffs, analog and electronic earplugs.

The most common form of hearing protection used in everyday life is the passive hearing protection system. These comprise of soft earplugs that can be fit in the ear and block external noise from the surroundings. Since they just block noise by occupying the physical space in the ear, they are not great for providing protection for an extended use.

Earmuffs, on the other hand, are a better option when compared to earplugs because they help in eliminating the background sound effectively. The best type of protective gear for ears are noise-canceling electronic earplugs and earmuffs. They help to reduce the noise level with the help of electronic technology and does not cause any damage to the ears.

At the same time, these electronic earplugs enable a person to listen to what is happening in their surroundings. It blocks the high decibel noise and lets one hear general sounds like a conversation and the sound of people approaching.

Ways To Protect Your Ears

Some guns are capable of producing a lot of pressure when fired. This pressure can cause hearing loss by damaging the bones present behind the ear. This can happen even if the ear canal is protected by an earplug. Hence it is essential to recognize and choose a high-quality gear that will protect your ears even in an indoor setting.

These are the simplest and cheapest way to protect your ears. They have a noise reduction rating of 25 to 33 depending on their type and are capable of providing good protection to your ears.

While they are inexpensive and small, they also provide limited protection since they just cover the ear canal. This leaves the bones outside the ear canal vulnerable to damage from loud noises and can cause a damage to your hearing despite the protection.

These earplugs also block out all the sounds from the environment which will leave you lost and incapable of paying attention to what is happening around you. This is a major drawback especially when you are out hunting.

These are a modified version of the normal earplugs since they are reversible. The reversible feature allows passive protection for continuous noise and a noise-activated protection for a momentary sound like the shot of a gun.

The best part about using these earplugs is that they allow the user to listen to the sounds from the surrounding when the noise-activated protection mode is being used. This is a very big advantage for hunters who need to keep a tab on any unusual movement in their surroundings.

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ClearArmor 141001 Shooters Hearing Protection Safety Ear Muffs...
  • Great NRR (Noise Reduction Rating) - The Best Hearing Protection You Can buy
  • Compact folding design for efficient storage. . Adjustable to Fit All Sizes
  • ANSI S3.19 & CE EN521 Tested+Certified . . Black, Over-The-Head Ear Muffs

Earmuffs are a better choice than earplugs for people who use guns regularly. They have a noise reduction rating of about 30 and provide an effective protection to users. They are simple to use and do not require any additional assembly.

They also help to protect the delicate bones close to the eardrum and thus help in providing a complete protection to the ears. However, they are awkward to wear with the headgear and may get in the way.

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Howard Leight by Honeywell Impact Sport Sound Amplification Electronic...
  • Built-in directional microphones amplify range commands and other ambient sounds to a safe 82 dB, providing more natural...
  • Actively listens and automatically shuts off amplification when ambient sound reaches 82 dB; Noise Reduction Rating...
  • Features low profile earcups for firearm stock clearance; adjustable headband for secure fit; compact folding design for...

These are an excellent option for blocking loud noises and amplifying other sounds present in the environment which enables a user to have a clear focus while shooting. They can be used both while hunting and during simple target practice.

The drawbacks are the same as that of simple earmuffs in terms of a good fit and usability. They also have a noise reduction rating of 22 which make them redundant for use while they are used indoors.

These earplugs offer the same protection as that which is provided by electronic earmuffs albeit in a smaller size! Some models also give the user the freedom to adjust the sounds in the environment and amplify specific sounds.

The biggest drawback of these earplugs is that they only protect the ear canal and not the bones that surround it. Thus they are more suitable to hunters than shooters. At the same time, they are expensive and not many hunters may want to buy them.

Comparison Table

Firing Up

We have already explored the need for using protective gear for ears while you are out hunting or shooting using guns. Technology has made it possible to have some great innovations in this field which ranges from all levels of costing and features. Paying adequate attention towards protecting your ears is a must if you wish to safeguard yourself from the danger of hearing loss and other hazards.

Sources:

Rimfire VS Centerfire: Ammo Comparisons – Max Blagg

Rimfire vs Centerfire

There isn’t a lot of difference on how guns work. The major difference lies in the type of primer ignition system used in the gun which leaves beginners in a fix as they constantly wonder about the better primer ignition option between rimfire vs. centerfire.

The functioning mechanism of guns is the designed on the same concept. A powder charge is filled in a pipe that is sealed from one end. An ignition in the powder charge stimulates an explosion where a projectile is launched from the sealed end of the pipe.

The question of choosing one ignition mechanism over the other depends on the purpose for which a gun is going to be used. These activities include using a gun for hunting or simply learning to shoot at a shooting class.

Modern bullets use one of the two primer ignition systems - rimfire or centerfire where each mechanism has its own purpose and uses. The major difference between these two ignition mechanisms is their design and method of operation.

We will be exploring the details of rimfire vs centerfire in this article and help you understand the niches in which they operate along with their working mechanisms and differences.

What Is Rimfire?

Rimfire

A rimfire cartridge was first used in the year 1845 and was made by evenly distributing the primer inside the rim pipe. It worked wonders as the cartridge was one-piece and did not require any assembly before firing. The single piece structure also helped to prevent the entry of dirt, dust and moisture inside the cartridge and made it very convenient to use.

Rimfire design faced two major challenges during the initial period. The first was to distribute the primer evenly at the base of the cartridge and the second was the need to utilize a soft metal for the construction of the rim.

The rim was needed to be created out of a highly malleable metal so that it could be dented easily by the firing pin. Copper was the most preferred choice but it came with a disadvantage - it was not possible to load a highly powered load because of the risk of a blowback.

Rimfire technology was used during the Civil War in the Spencer repeating rifle which fired a .52 caliber rimfire bullet. Even though the bullet speed was low, it was capable of inflicting major damage wherever it hit. It also displayed a capacity of firing 20 to 30 shots per minute which were way superior when compared to other guns used during that time.

What Is Centerfire?

Centerfire

Centerfire cartridges were invented close to 1812 much before rimfire cartridges were discovered. However, they were not quite reliable to use and continuous changes were made to its design until it was finally perfected during the year 1855.

It started gaining a lot of popularity and was used as a standard ignition mechanism for both rifles and handguns by the year 1860. It comprised of a primer cap which was placed at the center of a cartridge which was made out of brass or copper.

It was possible to construct the cartridge and the primer cap using different materials as the primer cap was an external component and could be fit into the cartridge separately. This enabled the makers to construct a stronger cartridge which could be dispelled with a greater velocity and could be used on bullets of all sizes.

An issue that cropped up with using separate metals was sealing. It was very difficult to seal two different metals together so that they could be extremely cohesive. This gave space for moisture and dirt to enter these cartridges and made them difficult to use.

The solution to this problem was found in the form of lacquer which was used to seal the different metals tightly and prevent the entry of foreign particles inside the cartridge which could compromise the ammunition. The result was a highly developed and effective ignition mechanism that was safe to use and could fire at a long range.

Rimfire VS Centerfire - Difference Between The Two

We have already taken a look at rimfire and centerfire cartridges and their mechanisms along with their construction aspects and invention history. This has shed light on the fact that both of these cartridges are not the same and come with some differences which are spotted in their design and operating mechanisms.

A rimfire cartridge has a lower power and thus can operate well at a closer range. Though modern technology has enabled the use of different metals and alloys in their construction to make way for a longer range, the cost factor shoots up and they are not as effective as centerfire cartridges.

Centerfire cartridges can be reused multiple times by replacing the primer cap. This factor increases the cost of these cartridges but one can avail the economies of scale in the long run. A rimfire cartridge, on the other hand, is inexpensive but cannot be reused which makes it an expensive affair if you use it regularly.

Rimfire cartridges are available in .22 caliber shots whereas centerfire cartridges are available in almost every caliber size. This has made it a favorite with the police forces and the military who use ammunition and are constantly in need of better weapons and equipment.

Centerfire cartridges are also extremely safe to use and a shot with a higher caliber too is not as dangerous as it would be while using a rimfire cartridge. The primer pipes are completely sealed and are impervious to moisture and dust particles.

The Working Mechanism

The working mechanisms of rimfire and centerfire cartridges are different and it is essential to know them as they will help you pick the best cartridge which is suited to your needs.

Centerfire cartridges have a separate primer cap which is attached to the center of the rim pipe. This enables an even ignition when compared to the rimfire cartridge in which only a part of the gunpowder is ignited despite it being evenly distributed throughout the rim pipe.

The self-contained primer also makes centerfire cartridges more reliable and easier to shoot even while using high caliber models. Hence these cartridges are more suitable for military use and for self-defense.

A rimfire cartridge is more suited for hunting and practice purposes because the primer casing is built into the cartridge which makes it more susceptible to manufacturing defects. At the same time, a shot fired using a rimfire cartridge is more accurate as it generates lesser recoil when compared to a centerfire cartridge.

Comaparison Table

Product Name

Image

Details

Rimfire

Rimfire

Cartridge has a lower power

Can operate well at a closer range

Centerfire cartridges are also extremely safe to use


Centerfire

Centerfire

Cartridges can be reused multiple times

Rimfire cartridges are available in .22 caliber shots

Cartridges are available in almost every caliber size

Which Is Better?

The general firing mechanism of a gun is based on the ignition of the primer. The explosion caused by igniting the primer will propel a bullet forward and help it to reach its target. This happens every time a gun is fired regardless of whether it is a rimfire cartridge or a centerfire cartridge.

When a centerfire cartridge is used, the explosion takes place at the center since that is where the primer is placed. This leads to a greater degree of efficiency and consistency and the bullet is fired with a greater velocity.

While rimfire cartridges are best suited for hunting game and close range targets, it is difficult to lay your hands on one because of their limited availability. They are also prone to manufacturing problems which may lead to misfires and accidents. Thus it is not advisable to use them for self-defense.

A centerfire cartridge is widely available. While a rimfire cartridge is popular in the .22 caliber rifle, the centerfire cartridge is available in almost every other caliber size. It is very safe to use and is hence in great demand in police forces and military.

Centerfire cartridges can also be used for a number of times which raises the bar for other cartridges. Multiple uses of a single cartridge helps to even out the expense of buying a centerfire cartridge which makes it a profitable investment in addition to being highly safe and effective.

Conclusion

While comparing both types of ammunition, it is quite easy to say that centerfire cartridges are safer and more reliable when compared to rimfire cartridges. They are designed superiorly and are widely available today due to their use in almost every other rifle and handgun available to us.

As we compare the differences it is imperative to note that rimfire cartridges are on a decline whereas centerfire cartridges are the future. The use of a primer cap instead of a compound make centerfire cartridges more reliable and safe to use and the boxer design makes it very easy to extract a used primer and replace it with a new one.

While the reloading feature is available in rimfire cartridges too, it can be done only by using a specialized kit designed for this purpose. At the same time, the procedure is complex and needs delicate handling which makes it time-consuming and not worth all the effort.


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380 VS 9mm: Ammo Comparisons, Guide, And Review

380 vs 9mm Ammo Comparisons

There is a reason why gun enthusiasts keep comparing popular ammunition. While some of them clearly win over the others, there are a few of them that are equally popular and hold the fort equally well for their side.

The long-brewing comparison between the 380, or the .380 ACP, and the 9mm, or the 9x19mm Parabellum, falls in the above category. Both are used for self-defense and have been winning over ammo buyers for years now. However, there are slight differences that make one better over the other, with regards to ballistics performance, recoil, price and more aspects.

Ahead, we’ll see a comprehensive comparison between the .380 ACP and 9mm. Before we begin, let’s look at a quick overview of both the self-defense cartridge.

 

.380 ACP: Overview

380 ACP


Introduced in 1908 by Colt in the U.S, .380 ACP was designed by John Browning, hence it is also called as the 9mm Browning at times. It was built for self-defense purpose, having a rimless case and being straight-walled.

It is known by several names, including 9mm Browning, 9mm Short, 9x17mm, due to the fact that it has the same bullet diameter as that of the original 9x19mm Parabellum, 9mm.

The .380 ACP features 9,5mm base and rim diameter and a case length of 17.3mm and overall length of 25mm. It has a shooting velocity of about 1050 feet per second and primarily used as a self-defense cartridge. It is also used as a backup pistol by police officials and by beginners due to its low recoil.

 

9mm: Overview

9mm


The 9mm or the 9x19 Parabellum features German engineering, designed by Georg Luger and was launched in 1902 by the firearms brand DWM for their Luger semi-automatic pistol. Over time, it went through various iterations and different variants were launched.

It was primarily designed for military use and till date is the standard cartridge used by NATO forces and by other law enforcement agencies in the U.S. and other countries, along with being highly popular in self-defense domain.

The 9mm features a rimless but tapered case with a bullet diameter of 9mm. The overall length of the cartridge is considerably longer at 29.69mm and case length of 19.15mm. It features a shooting velocity between 950 to 14,500 feet per second, depending on the ammo used.

 

380 VS 9mm: Comparison

While the .380 ACP is often considered interchangeable with the 9mm due to the same diameter, it’s not, really, due to different shell length and structure.

Let’s take a look at their distinct features and how they compare against each other.

Performance

The 9x19mm Parabellum wins when it comes to performance. With a heavier cartridge which has a longer shell length and produces more energy, the 9mm creates a maximum velocity of 1,400 feet per second as opposed to the maximum 1000 feet per second produced by the .380. The longer shell length means the cartridge has more powder capacity and hence the higher velocity and more power.

Consequently, the bullet fire by 9mm does more damage than the one fired by 380. The stopping power of 9mm is higher and it packs a lot more pressure to expand the bullet more than 380 could.

Recoil

man firing a gun in the forest


While the performance of 9mm is better than the 380, the fact that it produces more force and higher velocity also means that is a higher recoil which can be inconvenient to inexperienced shooters and not very handy in case of an emergency.

The .380 ACP, while produces lesser energy and does lesser damage, it has lower recoil than the 9mm and is easy to use by beginners during self-defense situations. Since the gunpowder used is lesser, the force produced is less intense and the recoil gets set off, making it easy to reacquire the target.

Target Penetration

Target

The extent to which the projectile can penetrate is what decides the scope of damage that can be caused to the target. The 9mm has considerably more penetration power than the .380 ACP.

9mm fires with more force and has a sleeker shell which builds more firepower. Therefore, all factors combined, the cartridge is able to over penetrate to 13 inches and cause substantial damage. The .380, on the other hand, packs lesser force and lower velocity shooting power which limits its penetration to 9 inches.

Therefore, 9mm has an edge over the .380 ACP in the sense that the bullet fired through 9mm has more chances and scope of tearing down the target by traversing completely through it.

Shooting Accuracy

When it comes to self-defense, firing with accuracy is one of the most important factors to prevent yourself from harm.

Since the .380 fires with less force and has lower recoil, it fires with more accuracy since there is a steadiness while using it. When you have less power against you, the pistol fires with greater accuracy. However, the .380 ACP is mainly for very short ranges due to the low velocity and pressure and can’t be expected to hit a long-range with equal accuracy.

In the end, though, the accuracy highly depends on the experience and the skill of the shooter.

Size

The .380 ACP rounds, being shorter in size, do a better job at concealing your firearm than the 9mm that is larger and needs a bigger pistol.

The .380 rounds are shorter and fire with lesser force, therefore, they can be used in pistols of subcompact size which can be concealed while carrying easily. This is why the 380 is more used as a backup handgun since it remains hidden and can be drawn out with ease being lightweight.

Pricing

The increasing popularity of the 9mm cartridges has made them widely available and hence, lowered their rates. Currently, you can buy them at a cheaper price than the .380 since the .380 are used lesser and for a very specific purpose. Therefore, the economics of supply and demand come into play and since the 9mm is greater in supply and the demand for .380 is specific.

The rounds for .380 are expensive when compared to the 9mm. On an average, it costs $20 to buy a round of ammo for the .380 as compared to $12 for a 9mm.

Practical Use

Due to shorter size rounds and subcompact guns, the .380 ACP is mainly used as a concealed carry gun for backup. Since the ballistics performance is not up to the mark when compared to the 9mm, it is not usually used as a primary weapon. The smaller size makes it easy to carry, though, and easier to conceal.

The 9mm is used as a standard ammo by the NATO armies and the other non-NATO militia, along with major law enforcement agencies. It is available in compact pistols and has more magazine round capacity, therefore, it is ideal for self-defense as well as military use.

Ammo Used

There are many options available for both, 9mm as well as .380 ACP. Both are used for self-defense and military operations, with 9mm being more dominant in the military end.

The top options of ammunition for the .380 include Liberty Civil Defense 50 grain SCHP, Hornady Custom Ammunition 90 grain, Remington 88 grain HTP and SIG Sauer 90 grain 380 V-Crown JHP. All these bullets are ideal for self-defense and have short rounds, that are suitable for pocket pistols. For a pocket pistol using .380 ACP, a 90-grain projectile will have the best case in terms of defense since it will have more penetration capability and higher velocity.

The best options of ammunition for the 9mm include Federal HST 9mm 124 grain, Federal HST 9mm 147 grain, American Eagle 9mm 115 grain and Blazer Brass 9mm. Notice that the weight of the bullets is a lot more than the ones used for .380 ACP due to more caliber and a case length of 19.5mm. The penetration of these bullets ranges between 12 to 18 inches.

 

Are .380 And 9mm Interchangeable?

While the 380 ACP and the 9x19mm Parabellum are perceived to be used interchangeably due to their same bullet diameter, they are inherently too different to be used in place of the other.

Yes, the diameter for both the cartridges is 9mm. However, the 9mm has a considerably longer shell length than the .380. The longer length means larger powder capacity and more power. The .380 has smaller size and length which makes it unsuitable for firearms suited for the 9mm.

When you use a more powerful ammo in a firearm not suited for that power, it can backfire and damage the firearm. Therefore, using a shorter .380 case in the magazine built for a longer 9mm case is evidently not a wise choice.

PRODUCT

IMAGE

RATING

PRICE

380 ACP

380 ACP

9MM

9mm

 

The Conclusion

9mm wins over the .380 in terms of performance and power, clearly. The German-engineered cartridge packs more power due to a longer shell length and more caliber, with higher shooting velocity. It used heavier bullets that expand more, thereby holding better penetration.

 

The .380 is better in terms of ease of use since it has a lesser recoil due to less force exerted. It is also used with subcompact pocket pistols which are easier to carry and do a much better job at concealability. Also, even the .380 pushes out lesser force, with the right ammo used, it is a solid cartridge for self-defense.

 

While 9mm is a great possession in case of any emergency or self-defense or attack circumstances, as evident by their adoption by the military and the law enforcement agents, the .380 is best suited for close-range self-defense shooting. Take your pick according to your purpose, and you won’t go wrong with either.

9mm VS 45: What Is The Difference Between The Two?

9mm vs 45 Ammo Comparisons


Choosing your gun is amongst one of the most crucial decisions you make in your life. Usually, depending upon the intended purpose of the weapon, common considerations that guide a gun buying decision include its size, shooting range, ease of firing, sound produced on firing, weight and the cost. For instance, if you need the gun for your safety and protection at home, then you might be okay with a big gun like a shotgun or a rifle as long as it comfortable to fire. If you intend to carry the firearm on your person then you would want it to be compact and easy to conceal.

However, another important factor that can influence your decision is the kind of cartridge the gun uses and what will you need. There are many different kinds of ammo. So many that a first-time buyer can get thoroughly confused. For the sake of dialing down the confusion, we are only going to pitt a 9mm vs 45 in this article.

 

What Is A Cartridge?

Commonly confused with a bullet, a cartridge or ammo actually has these components:

  • A bullet which is the actual part of the cartridge that impacts the target.
  • A casing which holds the primer and powder and makes the shell of the cartridge.
  • A primer which helps ignite the powder.
  • A powder that explodes.

At the bottom of the cartridge is the primer. It is a chemical compound which is struck by the firing pin at the base of the cartridge when the gun’s trigger is pulled. This creates a spark and ignites the powder. The powder catches fire and explodes. This explosion creates a large amount of pressure that throws the bullet out of the cartridge and ultimately out of the barrel of the gun resulting in the weapon firing.

The empty cartridge needs to be removed from the weapon to make room for the next cartridge to be fired. Some weapons do this automatically while some need to be emptied manually.

 

How Does Ammo Differ?

gun ammo


If it is your first experience with owning a gun, the sea of options in ammo can make it very difficult to choose the right ammo for you. But there are two broad differences that can help you out.

The first is whether you want a rimfire or a centerfire ammo. In the centerfire cartridges, you’ll be able to see the primer in the center of the base of the bullet. If the base of the cartridges is flat with no primer in the center, it is a rimfire ammo.

It just means that firing pin will hit the center in the case of centerfire ammo and it will hit the rim in case of the rimfire ammo. Though, the rimfire bullets are much cheaper, you will usually find them only small caliber.

This brings us to the second big difference - the size of the ammo. There are many different sizes of cartridges - 9mm, .40 S&W, 45 ACP, 12 Ga, .50 BMG and the list goes on.

 

Why Size Matters

Ammo contributes significantly to the choice of gun you make because of its size. Guns that use larger cartridges have more stopping power - that means a greater impact on the target. At the same time, they are slow to fire continuously because of the higher recoil. Their size may also decrease the magazine capacity, which we will talk about later, and their follow up shots are also limited.

Guns with smaller cartridges offer the advantage of fast follow up shots and more room for multiple shots. Also, their stopping power is less, which is safer for first time users.

As promised, let us understand and compare the 9mm and 45 to help you understand which one is the cartridge for you so you can choose the right gun for yourself.

 

History

Both, the 9mm and 45 go back to the beginning of the 20th century.

Actually named the 9x19 Parabellum, the 9mm was designed by George Luger way back in 1901 and went into production a year later. It was adopted by the German Navy and German Army in the years 1904 and 1906, respectively. It was also used by the German forces in World War 1.

In the year 1904, John Browning developed the .45, commonly called the 45. Many countries including the United States used it during the World War 1.

Both cartridges have been popular amongst the worlds’ armed forces since then.

This is pretty much where the similarities between the two cartridges end. Both are so popular with patrons rooting for them equally that besides a few common factors it is always the 9mm vs 45.

 

9mm vs 45 man firing a gun


9mm VS 45: What’s The Difference?

Let’s get to the why these cartridges are so different.

Origin

The 45 was made in the United States of America while the 9mm was made in Germany.

Diameters

  • Bullet Diameter: The bullet diameter, also known as the caliber, determines the whole it makes in the target. The 9mm as the name suggests has a diameter of 9.01 mm whereas the .45 has a diameter of .452 inches or 11.01 mm. You will often find guns being named in a caliber. That is because of the diameter of the gun’s barrel and hence, of the cartridge.
  • Base Diameter: The 9mm has a base diameter of 9.93 mm, while the 45 has one of 12.1 mm.
  • Neck Diameter: The 9mm has a base diameter of 9.96 mm, while the 45 has one of 12.2 mm.

Case Type

There have been no significant findings to prove the effect of casing design on a bullet’s velocity or ballistics. Yet, some manufactures claim that their design makes a difference. In case of the 9mm, you’ll find the casing to be tapered while the 45 has a straight one.

Case Length

The case length can affect how far inside a bullet is seated in the cartridge.

You will find a case length of .898 inches in a 45 and of .754 inches in a 9mm cartridge.

Expansion

The 9mm expands .36” to .72” while the 45 expands .45” to .79”.

Length Of The Cartridge

A cartridge length should be able to accomodate the following:

  • The neck should be long enough to give the cartridge a comfortable seating and enough hold.
  • The cartridge should not be too big for the gun’s magazine.

The 9mm ammo is 19.15mm long while the 45 is 32.4mm long.

Pressure

The pressure is one of the contributors to how far and how fast the bullet is projected from the cartridge and gun. The 9mm has a maximum pressure of 34,084 psi, while the 45 has maximum pressure of  21,000 psi.

Velocity

A high speed cartridge is always better. Hence, with a velocity range of 95-1400 FPS, the 9mm beats the 45 which travels in a range of 700-1150 FPS.

Energy

The 9mm carries an energy of 115 grains: 323 foot-pounds which is much lower than the 185 grains: 411 foot pounds of the 45.

Momentum

Ballistic experts have maintained that the momentum is a good measure of the bullet’s performance. In that case the 9mm falls short of momentum by a large gap against the 45.

Primer

The 45 uses the same primer as large rifles while the 9mm uses the Berdan or Boxer primer for small pistols. The Berdan primer is mostly used by militaries though it is reusable, it is a difficult process as the primer cup is attached to the casing itself. While the boxer primer is most popular is the United States due to its ease of replacement.

Penetration

The deeper a bullet penetrates, the more damage it causes to the target. The 45 gives a bullet penetration of 11.3” to 14.3” as compared to the 9mm’s 8” to 15.9” penetration.

Capacity Of The Magazine

The 9mm cartridges are smaller than the 45. Hence, magazines can hold more of the 9mm. However, the capacity may vary depending upon which gun is being used. Usually, a magazine shipped from the factory can carry 6-14 cartridges in case of 45s and 6-20 cartridges in case of the 9mms.

Recoil

man pointing a gun

Recoil refers to the force with which a firearm recoils when it is fired without support from behind. It impacts the user and can even cause serious injury. The 9mm cartridge has a lower recoil than the 45 ammo. The latter is known to push the firearm user’s hands backward on firing.

Cost

A 9mm cartridge is much cheaper than the 45.

Happy Choosing

There you are! Now you know pretty much everything you need to know to choose the right cartridge for you. The 9mm trumps the 45 in aspects such as cost, easy to replace primer, more magazine capacity and lower recoil, the 45 seems to be made to get the job done with its higher penetration, momentum and energy.

You can now weigh the pros and cons of both the cartridges to decide what works best for you.

 

Sources:

Diffen

Pew Pew Tactical

Gun Digest

Hunter Ed

Mass Reloading

Review And Guide To Bullet Sizes And Types For Beginners

Review & Guide To Bullet Sizes And Types For Beginners

bullets on a table with different bullet sizes

There was a time when there were only a couple of types of bullets and they were used all around. However, over time, the ammunition industry evolved to manufacture a plethora of types and sizes of bullets.

Before we get into the details of the sizes and the types, it is important to know the basic terminology associated with ammunition. The entire unit that we generally understand as the bullet is called a cartridge which further constitutes of a bullet. A bullet is the metal projectile inside the cartridge along with the gunpowder, the casing generally made from steel or brass and the primer which is an ignition for the propellant.

The caliber is the diameter of the barrel, which is actually the diameter of the bullet or the bullet size in layman terms. Hence, when you go shopping for bullets and asking about bullet sizes, you are essentially looking for caliber size of the cartridge.

Things To Consider Before Deciding On The Bullet Size

Before you make your decision about the caliber size you want to buy, there are certain aspects you should know about.

  • The weight of the bullet is measured in ‘grains’. One pound is equivalent to 7,000 grains.
  • The exact speed of the bullet in feet/sec.
  • The stopping power of the bullet, i.e, the number of bullets it would take to hit the target and drop it.

Types Of Bullets

Bullets with gun

While there are a number of typical and complex bullet types available in the market, we’ll go over the ones that are the most commonly used in hunting, self-defense and shooting ranges.

Hollow Point Bullets

Considered among the more dangerous ones, hollow point bullets are structured to expand on collision with the target. They are mostly used for home defense and by armed forces, mainly police force, due to their intense stopping power. Individuals carrying concealed guns also prefer hollow point bullets.

While considered dangerous, they are the best in case of an attack since their high stopping power ensures maximum damage with every subsequent bullet and restricts the attacker.

Full Metal Jacket

Full metal jacket, or FMJ as they are called, are the most common type of bullets, mainly used in shooting ranges with short distances.

The bullet is made of a soft metal like lead in the center and which is covered by hard metal like copper. The presence of an outer metal covering ensures that the lead is not left in the barrel on firing the bullet. These bullets come in all kinds of shapes - be it pointy, round, or flat.

FMJ bullets are not very suitable for self-defense or attacks due to low stopping power. They cut channels, small in size, through which they go through the target. FMJs are designed in a way that the bottom of the cup they are made from become the tip of the bullet.

Open Tip Matches

OTMs have a very small opening on the top which makes them quite similar to hollow point bullets, however, they can’t expand due to the opening. They are made in a way that the bottom of the copper cup they are made becomes the bottom of the bullet.

This type of bullets is preferred mainly by long-distance shooting ranges and target shooters since they are manufactured in a way that the bullets are standardized when it comes to their roundness. The consistency enables their suitability for shooting long-range targets.

Ballistic Tip

Ballistic tip is the combination of full metal jacket and hollow point bullet types. It takes the stopping power of the hollow point and the physical structure of FMJ to create a bullet that is long with a boat-tail base and has a plastic covering.

Ballistic tip bullets are pointy with consistent and sleek bottoms. The tip is made of plastic which enables it to keep the shape intact. These types of bullets are mainly used in hunting due to the high stopping power. The weight is mostly collected in the back of the bullet to give it more speed.

Soft Point

Designed to expand on hitting the target, soft point bullets are made of a soft metal, like lead, at their core and have a covering of a strong, hard metal. The front tip is left open with some of the lead exposed so that the soft metal can easily expand on hitting the target.

Therefore, soft point bullets are quite similar to the full metal jacket bullets. They can cause some serious wounds since they do more damage due to expansion than their original caliber size. They are available in both boat-tails and normal cylindrical ends.

Bird Shot

As the name suggests, these are small cartridges used for hunting birds, primarily. These are available as shotgun rounds and come in multiple quantities, more than a dozen, in one shell.

Bird shots are used only as shotgun rounds and for shooting birds and pigeons, but never for attack or self-defense.

Apart from the above, there is buck shot that is the best bullet type for home security. Then there are slugs that can cause serious damage if used by an expert and can shoot a target within a 100 yards.

Bullet Sizes

It’s quite natural for a novice to get confused when it comes to buying ammunition. There are so many sizes of bullets, technically called caliber sizes, available in the market today that it can be tough to select the one that fits best with your requirement.

The most common use for bullets for people generally is hunting, self-defense or targeting shooting at the range. Therefore, we’ll cover the bullet sizes that mostly cater to these objectives.

Bullet Sizes

.22LR

The .22LR is the most commonly sold bullet due to a variety of factors. The .22 long rifle, as its called, is the starter caliber for shooters, used to hunt snakes, birds, etc. Here are some specific features of the bullet:

  • The bullet weighs about 30-40 grains.
  • Negligible recoil, therefore, makes a great caliber for people who are just beginning to shoot.
  • It’s a rimfire, i.e, the primer is located in the rim rather than the center.
  • Priced at 7 cents a round, making it extremely cheap.
  • High speed and intense shooting power with small size.
  • Apt for shooting ranges and hunting or training.
  • Bullet velocity of approximately 1200-1600 feet/sec
  • The .22LR is the best option for beginners due to its cheap price and minimum hassles of handling. While it is meant for shooting birds and snakes and targets, it can cause serious wounds if shot at a human as well since the caliber keeps moving inside the body and damages the internal organs.

    .25ACP

    .25 ACP, the Automatic Colt Pistol, is an upgraded version of .22LR, being a little larger and slightly higher stopping power. It’s a centerfire caliber, which means that the primer is placed in the center.


    It is considered more reliable due to the centerfire covering. Let’s see some of the features of .25ACP:

  • Slightly larger than .22LR, but still compact.
  • Has a higher stopping power.
  • Centerfire caliber, i.e, primer is located in the center, and straight-walled.
  • Used for short ranges and the caliber has low velocity.
  • Reliable due to the centerfire casings.
  • More expensive, priced at 20 cents a bullet.
  • The .25ACP is meant to be in handguns used for home security since they can cause more damage due to higher stopping power and the reliable centerfire design.

    9mm Luger

    The 9mm Luger or the 9x19mm Parabellum, as it’s technically named, is basically an all-rounder bullet that can be used in self-defense as well as for recreational shooting. The shooting power depends on the type of gun used with the caliber. However, they do have a very low recoil which makes them more popular.


    Here’s what you get when you purchase the 9mm Luger:

  • Bullet weight between 115 and 147 grains.
  • Big bullet size, similar to .380ACP.
  • The standard caliber used in NATO nations and by most of the police officers universally.
  • Can be used with multiple guns, and the guns can have 15-17 rounds of these on an average.
  • Priced at 25 cents.
  • The 9mm Luger can also be used in concealed guns. The size is ideal to be used in a lot of types of guns.

    .56×45 mm

    Also called as the .223, the .56x45mm is used both by the armed forces as well as the civilians. The caliber is good to use for long-range, therefore, it’s popular as a home defense round among civilians.


    Here’s what you need to know about the .56x45mm:

  • Has a slight recoil, therefore, should be handled by professionals.
  • Bullets weigh around 55 grains.
  • Used in some specific rifles, like M16/M4.
  • The cartridge has a long-range accuracy but shoots mildly.
  • Used both in the military as well as common use, but it isn’t used in hunting.
  • Priced at 30 cents, the .223 caliber is not very popular since you can’t use it for hunting, but nevertheless, packs power and is widely used in self-defense.

    .40 S&W

    Manufactured for the FBI initially as a 10mm caliber, the .40 S&W has been heavily popular with such defense and law enforcement agencies. It has more stopping power than other handgun cartridges used and also costs less.


    Here’s what you should know about .40 S&W before choosing to buy it:

  • Bullet weight between 165 to 180 grains, therefore, more lightweight and preferred for quick handling.
  • Packs more stopping power than the 9mm.
  • Costs less with bullets priced at 30 cents.
  • Also used for self-defense.
  • Strong recoil, therefore, not easy to handle.
  • While the FBI has shifted back to use the 9mm cartridge mostly, the .40 S&W is more suitable and is still used by many law enforcement agencies due to more power and energy.


    Apart from the ones listed above, there are many other bullet sizes you’ll find when you go for ammunition shopping, with the more popular ones being the .380ACP, .45ACP, the 12 gauge for shotguns, and many more. There are some less popular ones as well, like the .357 Magnum used in revolvers and more expensive than the rest, priced at 80 cents.

    The Conclusion

    More options mean more confusion, therefore, it can be overwhelming to buy the right caliber considering there are myriad sizes available in the market. Wrong bullet size and type with respect to the gun you possess can severely backfire, literally.

    There are a lot of factors that need to be considered before purchasing the bullet, along with understanding a lot of technical terms. The bullet sizes and types covered above are the most common ones and should give you a fair idea about the popular ammunition.

    Best AR-10 Rifles Reviewed

    Best AR-10 Rifles Reviewed

    Irrespective of whether you’re planning to buy an AR-10 rifle for your hunting trips or for your security requirements, the AR-10 is an excellent precision rifle that is worth the investment.

    Product

    Image

    Price

    Windham Weaponry R16FTT-308

    windham 308 ar-10

    DPMS Oracle 308

    DPMS Oracle 308 ar-10

    R.E.P.R. MkII from LWRC International 

    Lwrc Repr Mkii ar-10

    Daniel Defense DD5V1 

    Daniel Defense ar-10

    Review of the Best AR-10 Rifles

    So, the question is, which AR-10 rifle is the best?

    There are several arms manufacturers in the market that produce the AR-10 rifle and it can be quite difficult to decide on the one that is most suitable for your requirements. So, in our article, we have discussed some of the features of the top AR-10 rifle models available in the market that will enable you to make your choice easily.

    Windham Weaponry R16FTT-308

    windham 308 ar-10

    Founded by Richard Dyke, the former owner of Bushmaster firearms, Windham Weaponry produces high-quality rifles that are also very affordable. The weapons produced by Windham Weaponry are not just imitations of other AR-10 rifle designs but have been innovated on the original design.

    The main difference between the AR-10 made by Windham Weaponry is that it has a polymer lower, which makes the AR-10 lightweight. In fact, the weight of the Windham Weaponry R16FTT-308 is just around 7.5 lbs. The polymer lower also helps to cut down the cost of the rifle, which makes it a good budget buy.

    Additionally, the R16FTT-308 has a 16-inch barrel equipped with a birdcage flash suppressor. The rifle offers superior handling thanks to the adjustable 6-position, M4 style buttstock, improved grip and oval handguards that are synonymous with AR model firearms.

    Furthermore, the R16FTT-308 is not equipped with sights of its own, but the gas block features rails which allow you to add a front iron sight. Alternately, you can also attach a red dot sight or scope to the upper receiver of the rails. The R16FTT-308 is also equipped with a 20-round polymer magazine.

    Pros and Cons of the Windham Weaponry R16FTT-308

    Pros

    Cons

  • The R16FTT-308 is the lightest rifle on the list.
  • The rifle includes a 20-round magazine.
  • Polymer lower may not be liked by everyone.
  • M4-style stock and oval handguards give a classic look to the rifle but in terms of the handling, they are not very ergonomic.
  • Rifle does not come along with iron sights.
  • DPMS Oracle 308

    DPMS Oracle 308 ar-10

    If you are on the lookout for an inexpensive budget AR rifle, which is high in build quality at the same time, then the DPMS Oracle 308 is an excellent option. The DPMS Oracle 308 is manufactured by DPMS Panther Arms, which is renowned for producing good-quality budget rifles. 

    Additionally, the Oracle line from DMPS Panther Arms is their most budget friendly line of rifles and while they don’t usually introduce too many fancy upgrades, the guns are pretty affordable too and DMPS are the market leaders for AR-10 rifles. 

    Furthermore, the DPMS Oracle 308 is a simple AR-10 rifle that uses P-Mags. The Oracle 308 features an HBAR pattern 16-inch barrel made of chrome moly. The gas block and flat-top upper receiver of the rifle are railed and are ready for backup sights and optics. The trigger, standard stock, grip and handguard are basic yet functional. 

    Moreover, the end of the handguard has an A2 birdcage flash suppressor. The rifle has an A2 style grip, however, the buttstock is DMPS’s design that is similar to other types of adjustable buttstocks. The lower receiver of the Oracle 308 rifle is made from T6 billet aluminum and it has a normal AR-15 style of firing controls.

    Also, the rifle does not come with iron sights but comes with a metal magazine which holds 10 rounds of ammunition. 

    Pros and Cons of the DPMS Oracle 308 

    Pros

    Cons

    •Since the DPMS Oracle 308 is the most common AR-10 rifle pattern, it has the largest customization options. 

    •Lightweight rifle. 

    •Most inexpensive rifle on the list

    •The rifle does not come along with iron sights.

    •Magazine included along with the rifle holds only 10 rounds

    R.E.P.R. MkII from LWRC International 

    Lwrc Repr Mkii ar-10

    LWRC International manufactures high-performance rifles and offers complete firearms, as well as, parts that enable you to build your own firearm or upgrade your existing one. The Rapid Engagement Precision Rifle (or popularly known as R.E.P.R) is an AR-10 rifle which is designed in a way that makes the precision rifle idea more adaptable and flexible.

    The idea of a precision rifle is that it enables you to engage targets from very far — maybe hundreds of yards or more. 

    Furthermore, the R.E.P.R. MkII rifle is suitable for extreme range shots but can also be used for close range targets, which makes it ideal for hunting and for use in competitions. The R.E.P.R. MkII uses a short-stroke self-regulating gas piston system to drive the action, which has been fine-tuned to maintain precision. 

    Also, the R.E.P.R. MkII offers sub-MOA accuracy, which essentially means that you can achieve groups of less than 1-inch at 100 yards when using good quality ammunition. The adjustable gas block of the rifle enables you to tune the AR-10 to your specific load. The rifle is equipped with a 20-inch long barrel which has a spiral flute for cooling and rigidity. 

    Moreover, the handguard of the R.E.P.R. MkII has a full-length rail and is ventilated and the rest of the furniture is made of high-quality Magpul polymer. The rifle has a Geissele SSA 2-stage trigger and a 20-round polymer magazine and iron sights. 

    Pros and Cons of the R.E.P.R. MkII 

    Pros

    Cons

    •Offers high accuracy.
    •Includes high-quality iron sights.

    •Quite a heavy rifle. 

    Daniel Defense DD5V1 

    Daniel Defense ar-10

    Daniel Defense is quite popular for producing high-quality firearms that are very well engineered. The DD5V1 rifle has a cold forged 16-inch barrel. The rifle makes use of direct impingement in order to load the next round in the chamber. However, many of the features of the DD5V1 makes it an extremely fine rifle. 

    The DD5V1 has a lower made of high-quality polymer, which makes the rifle very lightweight. The forearm of the rifle is not attached to the barrel nut but bolts to the upper receiver instead. The length of the upper receiver is 15 inches and it is ventilated, which keeps the barrel of the rifle cool and it also has a top rail along the whole length. 

    The rifle has a barrel extension instead of a barrel nut, which helps to decrease the tension on the barrel and helps to increase precision. The DD5V1 rifle has ambidextrous controls and a modular charging handle. It is equipped with the high-quality Geissele SSA 2-stage trigger. The DD5V1 is equipped with a Daniel Defense Superior Suppression device. The rifle has an upgraded grip and buttstock. Overall, the Daniel Defense DD5V1 rifle is an extremely reliable and accurate AR-10. 

    Pros and Cons of the Daniel Defense DD5V

    Pros

    Cons

    •The rifle has ambidextrous controls and charging handle.

    •Trigger is match quality.

    •Upper receiver of the rifle is completely redesigned for greater accuracy and reliability.

    Rifle comes with upgraded high-quality furniture.

    •Iron sights not included with the rifle.

    •Lower of rifle made of polymer, which may not be to everyone’s liking.

    •Magazine that comes with the rifle holds only 10 rounds.

    What Are AR-10 Rifles? 

    The AR-10 rifle was developed in the late 50s by Eugene Stoner for ArmaLite. The AR-10 was used as a battle rifle, but only a few numbers were produced at the time. Today, the AR-10 is the weapon of choice for security service operations, sniper support and long-range shooting in law enforcement and for hunting sports. 

    The AR-10 rifle is very similar to the extremely popular model, the AR-15. However, the AR-10 is chambered, which makes it compatible for use with 0.308 Winchester or 7.62x51mm NATO rounds and it can shoot a much longer range for more than 600 yards compared to the AR-15. 

    Key Features of the AR-10 Rifle 


    • Extremely lightweight construction
    • Ammunition is magazine-fed
    • Semi-automatic rifle
    • Gas piston operated
    • Hardware is air-cooled
    • Shoulder-fired
    • Firing pin is spring-loaded
    • Chambered in 7.62x51mm NATO and 0.308 Winchester

    The AR-10 rifle has a gas-operated piston that essentially means that the rifle is cycled by a gas piston system which makes use of pressure from gas that expands to fire every shot. The AR-10 does not have the auto sear, found in fully-automatic rifles and so, is considered a semi-automatic rifle. The rifle is chambered and can accommodate 0.308 Winchester or 7.62x51mm NATO cartridges and so, it makes use of a long upper receiver and long magazines. 

    Most of the smaller components of the AR-10 such as the action spring, buffer and receiver extension can be interchanged with the AR-15, which also has similar parts. The AR-10 is a very versatile rifle and can be customized and built by making use of parts from various manufacturers. 

    What to Consider When Buying an AR-10 Rifle 

    What to Consider When Buying an AR-10 Rifle 

    High-Quality Parts 

    Trigger 

    Long-range rifles need triggers that are high in quality and ones that will not fail when fired. Triggers are usually single-stage or 2-stage, although, 2-stage triggers are the one most preferred by professionals, single-stage triggers are sufficient for entry-level rifle models. 2-stage triggers have a slack and a break phase and this makes them different from single-stage triggers. The slack is the beginning of the trigger pull and the break phase is when the shot is fired, where the rifle’s trigger spring breaks

    Barrel 

    The long-range precision of the rifle can be affected by the quality of the barrel. The barrel length, as well as the material, play a very important role in the shot accuracy. While chrome-lined rifle barrels are more long lasting when compared to stainless steel, they are not very precise and are not match grade. Stainless-steel barrels are match grade but are not long lasting and they become less accurate when the stainless steel begins rusting. 

    Barrels made of nitride steel, a combination of the features of stainless-steel and chrome-lined barrels are long lasting and match grade. 

    For long-range shooting, longer barrels offer better accuracy when compared to shorter barrels. A rifle with a barrel length of 20-24 inches is ideal for long-range shooting, 18-20 inches for mid-range and 16 inches for close-range shooting

    Scope 

    For long-distance shooting precision, optics are essential and there are a wide range of scopes available for AR-10 rifles. However, only a few of them work best for .308 rounds. To maximize performance, a high-quality AR-10 rifle needs a high-quality scope. 

    Accessories 

    Most of the parts of the AR-10 rifle are customizable and replaceable and although they can be got from various manufacturers, it is important to understand that there are certain models which may need proprietary parts for them to work properly. 

    Performance Quality 

    Weight 

    The weight of the rifle affects the level of comfort of the shooter. Typically, it is better to opt for lighter rifles compared to heavier ones to prevent muscle strain. Usually, gas rifles are lighter compared to piston rifles; however, the weight of the rifle is mainly determined by the material of the various parts of the rifle. 

    Range 

    The actual shooting range of the rifle may differ from the marketed shooting range. This is mainly due to the fact that the shooting range of the rifle depends on how well the rifle’s parts work together. For instance, a rifle with a shorter barrel has a shorter range of accuracy compared to longer barreled rifles. Also, the performance of the rifle is affected by the quality of the ammunition used. Powder ammunitions leave behind residues that are difficult to clean and make the rifle perform inaccurately and sluggishly. 

    Accuracy 

    The accuracy of the rifle depends on the achievable range of the rifle. If your rifle does not achieve an effective range of 500 yards or more, you may not be able to hit a target that is more than 500 yards away. The optics utilized with the rifle also affects the shooting accuracy. Some models of scopes work better with certain variants or models of rifles while others deliver average aim irrespective of the model you use it with. 

    What’s not to love about the AR-10 rifle? It is among the most versatile rifles out there and a great joy to shoot with. The AR-10 rifles are among the best in the particular niche and are ideal if you are looking for a gun to shoot with if your target is very far away. 

    If you are looking for: AR-15 barrelshow to remove an AR-15 stock, and collapsible stock vs fixed stock, we also have them for you. 

    Sources: 

    Reviewster 

    The Gun Zone 

    Armalite AR-10 

     

    The Benefits Of An AR15 Collapsible Stock Rifle

    The AR15 is one of the most popular rifles in the world today. You may carry an AR15 when you hunt, or you may use one at the shooting range. You have several models to choose from, but you need to choose a rifle that is comfortable when you fire. You also have a couple of different AR-15 buttstocks to choose from. One is the fixed stock rifles are common, but a collapsible stock rifle helps make shooting much simpler. This article explains the benefits of a collapsible stock when you are shooting an AR15 in the field or at the range.

    What Is A Collapsible Stock?

    Collapsible stocks fold up when not in use. The butt of a traditional rifle is part of the body of the rifle, and the stock does not move at all. You cannot fold up a fixed stock, but you can fold a collapsible stock when you are not using the rifle.

    AR15 Collapsible Stock photo

    Collapsible stock makes your rifle easier to use, and the rifle is easier to store when you are traveling. The long bag used to carry a fixed stock rifle is cumbersome, but the small bag used to haul a collapsible stock rifle is much more convenient. The gun does not even look like a firearm when you are carrying it to your car or in the field.

    Why Is Collapsible Stock Helpful?

    A collapsible rifle is extremely light. The new stocks created for the AR15 are made from carbon fiber or other polymers that are very light. You will not feel as though the rifle is too heavy, and the kickback from the rifle will not be nearly as strong when you fire.

    Overmolded AR15 Collapsible Stock Rifle

    Lighter collapsible stocks help you carry the rifle easily, and the collapsible stock helps you balance the rifle during firing. You cannot take aim effectively when the rifle is too heavy, and you cannot fire safely at a shooting range with a heavy rifle.

    Why Is A Collapsible Stock More Convenient?

    A collapsible stock rifle folds up in just a moment, and the stock folds out just as quickly. You may have your rifle folded on the floor of your hunting perch, but you can be ready to fire in just a few seconds. You will save space inside your perch as you wait for game to pass by, and you can stash your rifle easily when the stock is folded.


    You need to save as much space as possible when you travel, and a collapsible stock conserves space in your vehicle. The tightest AR15 design will fit inside your pack when you camp during a long hunt.

    Collapsible Stocks Are Cheaper

    A new collapsible stock is cheaper to produce, and you will save money on the rifle when you make a new purchase. The polymers used to make the collapsible stock cost the manufacturer less money, and the savings are passed on to you. You can create a collection of AR15’s with less money, or you can replace your old AR15 without breaking the bank. Purchasing a rifle on a budget is much simpler when you go with the collapsible stock.

    You have a few options when you purchase your rifle, but the collapsible rifle stock is by far the best. A Collapsible stock rifle is more comfortable to carry, fire and move. You can save space when you stash the rifle, and you can ready yourself at any time with a flick of the stock. New collapsible stock rifles have been designed for military use, and you get the same advantages when you purchase a new AR15 for hunting or target practice at the range.

    Comparison of Mil-Spec and Commercial AR-15 Collapsible Stocks

    Mil-Spec Stock Characteristics

    Mil-Spec Stock Characteristics

    A Mil-spec stock is required when you have a mil-spec buffer tube. The buffer tube is also called the lower receiver extender. Mil-spec tubes are smaller in diameter and have threads that are larger than the actual tube. The mil-spec tube is ~1.48″ in diameter. Mil-spec tubes also tend to have stronger threads which leads to a better overall gun setup. The tube is made from 7075-T6 alloy which creates 1-3 and 16-16 UN thread rolls. When being manufactured, the threads are first lathed as normal, then the tube is milled down to the military specific standards.

    Commercial AR-15 Collapsible Stocks Characteristics

    Commercial Stock Characteristics

    A commercial collapsible stock will fit on a buffer tube that is ~1.168″. They were created as a cheaper version to reduce costs to those wanting to have a more cost effective setup. They cost less because the extension is manufactured from an extruded tube and the tube has a welded on cap that’s usually made from a lesser metal. The threads match the 1-3 and 16-16 threads of the mil-spec but may not be as durable. The commercial stocks are often slanted at the point of attachment.

    Differences

    The differences between the mil-spec collapsible AR15 stock and the commercial collapsible stock are small but very important. The stocks can look almost identical but key differences will determine whether or not you have a successful setup. When deciding between a mil-spec and commercial collapsible stock its important to note that the buffer tube size is the most important consideration.

    Mil-Spec vs Commercial AR-15 Collapsible Stocks

    These stocks are not interchangeable so tube size must be considered. If you wish to switch from either mil-spec to commercial or vice versa you can change out the buffer, tube and spring. Mil-spec stocks will often give you more options as far as the type of stock you want. They just tend to be more common and you can find a wide variety of collapsible mil-spec stocks. Also it’s usually found that with mil-spec stocks, the fitting may be more consistent over different brands.

    It’s not always true but the following brands normally will use a mil-spec stock: Colt, Bravo, Daniel Defense, Smith & Wesson, Ruger and Spikes Tactical. Sabre, Bushmaster, Rock River, DPMS, and Olympic Arms usually will require a commercial collapsible stock. A commercial AR stock will go on a mil-spec tube but won’t fit exactly as it should and may leave some play at the connection, whereas a mil-spec stock will not fit on a commercial tube at all. Commercial stocks tend to be slanted at the attachment point where mil-spec stocks will be straight. Milspec stock tend to cost more than commercial stocks because they are costlier to manufacture but you often get a return on your investment based on the higher quality of the mil-spec stocks.