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Baofeng Tech is a Chinese company that produces a wide range of radios that operate in the Amateur Radio Frequency ranges.   The radios imported by Baofeng and other distributors into the U. S.

Baofeng UV-5R vs BF-F8HP: What Has Changed?

Baofeng UV-5R vs BF-F8HP: What Has Changed?Baofeng Tech is a Chinese company that produces a wide range of radios that operate in the Amateur Radio Frequency ranges.  The radios imported by Baofeng and other distributors into the U. S. have become wildly popular in the emergency preparedness world because of the price.  These are some of the least expensive full power handheld radios on the market that will operate across the spectrum. In many instances, the Baofeng handheld radio prices are half or less of a comparable model from Icom, Kenwood, or Yaesu.  For budget-minded individuals who want a means of emergency communication, the price alone makes these radios attractive. In this article, we will look into a head-to-head comparison of the Baofeng UV-5R vs BF-F8HP. Let’s get to it! Quick Navigation Baofeng UV-5R – The Radio That Started It All for Baofeng Baofeng UV-5RE – The Latest and the Greatest in the 5R line What Users Like about the UV-5RE What Users Don’t Like About the UV-5RE Baofeng’s Newest Entry – the Baofeng BF-F8HP Users of the Baofeng BF-F8HP – Pros Users of the Baofeng Bf-F8HP – Cons Baofeng UV-5R vs BF-F8HP – How Do These Two Radios Compare? My Experiences – The Boafeng UV-5R vs BF-F8HP Licensing – The Big Roadblock for Some People Last Minute Update (as of August 2020) Getting on the Air Baofeng UV-5R – "The Radio That" Started It All for Baofeng Baofeng had other radios in its lineup before the UV-5R came to the market.  They had enjoyed limited success with these smaller, less powerful radios, but with the introduction of the UV-5R, the US market opened like flood gates. I became aware of the smaller products offered by Baofeng when I had my retail store operating.  At the time, I was not a licensed amateur radio operator, but I ordered several of the smaller Baofeng radios to test.  It wasn’t long after that when the original UV-5R became available, and I ordered several of these as well directly from the factory in China. Field emergency communications were a hot topic among preppers and other outdoorsmen at the time and the Baofeng UV-5R seemed to fit the requirements for many of these communications needs.  Over the next few months, I took and passed my technician license exam and became a licensed HAM radio operator Since that time, the Baofeng UV-5R has gone through several upgrades and versions changes.  The latest iteration of the UV-5R line is the UV-5RE. Baofeng UV-5RE – The Latest and the Greatest in the 5R line There are a couple of caveats to buying a Baofeng UV-5RE online or even at a swap meet or gun show.  There are a lot of counterfeits on the market and you want to get a bona fide Baofeng product.  The main reason is to ensure that the radio you get is certified by the FCC to be Part 93 compliant. The UV-5R is a versatile little radio with many features and a wide array of capabilities, provided you can fathom the programming instructions or are computer savvy enough to use one of the available radio programming software that is available online.  Yes, you do have to program these radios to make them useful. As far as features go, the UV-5R boasts an impressive list for a radio that is often available with many accessories for under $50. Frequency Range – 136-174/400 – 479.995 MHz These frequencies cover the range of the Amateur VHF and UHF bands. High definition LED display in two available colors Upgraded frame material for longer life and more durability High/low power settings permitting either 4 watts or 1 watt transmit power Commercial FM radio receiver built-in 1500mAh battery Keypad lock Dual Display with Dual-band watch 128 memory slots Vox, DCS/CTCS encode support Built-in flashlight SMA Female antenna connection I could get more technical about the details of the radio receiver and the transmitter, but those details are a bit beyond the scope and intent of this article.  Suffice it to say that the UV5R is a fully capable handheld radio with all the latest technological advances built into the electronics and the firmware that controls everything. "What Users Like" about the UV-5RE The price is excellent for a radio with these kinds of features Great reception for such a small radio Programming with the computer interface cable and software is easy and quick Great battery life Solid and well-built feel to the radio.  Doesn’t feel like a cheap big box store walky-talky No lack of aftermarket accessories and upgrades to make a great little radio even better "What Users Don’t" Like About the UV-5RE The quality control is a little sketchy. Use a reliable dealer and watch for counterfeits Requires a license if you want to do more than just listen Hard to program manually.  You must buy the programming cable separate The manuals provided poorly written and are hard to understand Overall, the customer satisfaction ratings on the UV-5R are high, and most users find this radio fills their needs at an unbeatable price. BaoFeng UV-5R Plus Dual-Band 136-174/400-480 MHz FM Ham Two-Way Radio... Frequency Range: 136-174/400-480 MHz. FM Radio; Power output : 4 /1 watts; 50 CTCSS and 104 DCS. Comes with metallic rugged shell, more durable than previous UV-5R and UV-5RA. Cool and perfect for... See Price on Amazon Last update on 2020-08-14 at 03:08 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API "Baofeng’s Newest Entry" – the Baofeng BF-F8HP The newest entry into the Baofeng handheld radio group is the Baofeng BF-F8HP. Some advertisements for this radio tout it as the 3 rd Generation update of the UV-5R.  The BF-F8HP uses the same underlying technology as the UV-5R but offers more power, a new firmware edition, and a hardened case. The BF-F8HP also features a new and more powerful battery to match the upgraded output power.  All these upgrades and additions make the BF-F8HP a bit more expensive than a UV-5R.  Baofeng advertises that the BF-F8HP was designed in the US to specifically meet the requirements of Part 93 of the FCC regulations to ensure that users can operate safely and legally. Feature-wise, Baofeng hasn’t left anything out of the list. 2000mAh, 7.4v Li-ion battery pack Frequency range – 65-1008Hz (FM receive only), 136-174MHz and 400-520MHz High gain 7” flexible antenna Semi-duplex operation Three output power levels – 1w/4w/8w Fully backward compatible with all UV-5R accessories Tri-color LED display 128 memory slots Vox, DCS/CTCS encode support Built-in flashlight SMA Female antenna connection In the radio world, more output power means more distance.  The advantage of more power is especially true when talking about the UHF and VHF bands.  If you need more distance or you face challenges to using a handheld radio such as large buildings, terrain variations, or other interference issues, the additional power of the Baofeng BF-F8HP can justify the small difference in price. Users of the Baofeng BF-F8HP – Pros The extra power is well worth the extra price. Works well and hits repeaters up to 15 miles away from my house The multiple power settings are great for saving batteries Programming is easy with the accessory cable and software This radio feels solid and well built For a serious ham, this radio has all the features expected on a radio costing twice as much Users of the Baofeng Bf-F8HP – Cons Quality control seems to be an issue with Baofeng The SMA antenna connector is reversed from most other handheld radios There Is no way to copy a VFO to memory. The buttons on the keyboard are small and not easy for anyone with large hands to manipulate. In general, customers seem to be delighted with their choice of the Baofeng BF-F8HP.  The comments rate high on the customer satisfaction side.  The lack of an included programming cable seems to be the chief complaint even among those giving this radio high marks. Baofeng UV-5R vs BF-F8HP – How Do These "Two Radios Compare" ? Baofeng UV-5R Baofeng BF-F8HP Frequencies 136 – 174 MHz400 – 479 MHz65 – 108 MHz (Rcv Only) 136 – 174 MHz400 – 520 MHz65 – 108 MHz (Rcv only) Power (output) 1w/4w 1w/4w/8w Display 2 Color LED 3 Color LED Dual-Band Yes Yes Battery 1500mAh 2000mAh Memory 128 128 Included Radio, Antenna, Li-Ion battery, Desk charger, Belt clip, Wrist strap, User manual Radio, Li-ion battery, Antenna, Desk Charger, Belt Clip, Wrist strap, User Manual Feature-wise, the UV-5R and the BF-F8HP are almost identical.  The fact that the BF-F8HP is considered the 3 rd generation of the UV-5R explains a lot of this.  The significant differences between these two handheld radios ais in the power-output and then firmware that drives the radio functions. Almost all of the aftermarket accessories available for the UV-5R will work with the BF-F8HP radios, so if you are upgrading an existing radio to the newer model, you won’t’ have to stand the expense of replacing all of your accessories.   The differences in these two radios include: Output power – The UV-5R is limited to 4 watts output while the BF-F8HP can transmit 8 watts Supplied Battery size – The Bf-F8HP comes with a 2000mAh li-ion battery pack as opposed to the UV-5R’s smaller 1500 mAh battery pack Firmware – The Bf-F8HP includes the newest firmware available from Baofeng.  This firmware is designed to take advantage of the upgraded power of the BF0F8HP and will not be an available upgrade to the UV-5R radio. My Experiences – The Boafeng UV-5R vs BF-F8HP I have several of both models in my collection. A couple of my UV-5Rs date back more than five years, and I have never upgraded the firmware or done anything to them except adding some new batteries as the older battery packs began to age. I have had the older Baofeng UV-5R’s die for no apparent reason.  They just quit working.  It happens, especially with handheld radios that go outdoors in some harsh weather or ride around in the console of a truck on a construction job.  The great thing about the Baofeng radios is that I don’t fret too much over the loss because the investment was not that much. I like the Baofeng radios.  I think they are an excellent investment for the price, especially if you intend to use them only in emergencies. I keep a UV-5R in all my go-bags, get home bags, and three-day evacuation bags.   I tape a small card to the back of the battery with instructions on how to use the radio and what channels to monitor for emergency broadcasts. The built-in ability to monitor commercial FM broadcasts is an essential feature that makes the BaoFeng radios stand out for me.  In an emergency such as a hurricane or tornado, FM radio will be the preferred method for emergency agencies to communicate updates and information.  This feature means I don’t have to carry or worry about a separate radio to hear these broadcasts. As I begin to replace my older UV-5R’s, I will be choosing the new BF-F8HP for the simple reason that more power is just a good thing in my book.   More reach in an emergency communications situation means a better chance of being heard.  I wholeheartedly recommend everyone, whether you are a licensed amateur radio operator or not, to have a couple of these BaoFeng BF-F8HP radios in your kit. Licensing – The Big Roadblock for Some People Yes, if you operate on any of the Amateur Radio bands using a Baofeng radio, you are required to have at least a Technicians License issued by the Federal Communications Commission.  Now, it isn’t illegal to buy, own or listen to a radio that operates in these frequencies.  You can buy and listen to anyone operating on these frequencies but don’t push the TALK button and start transmitting. Many people are under the misconception that they can buy a Baofeng and program the MURS, GMRS, or FRS frequencies and begin transmitting immediately.  Not so.   All these frequencies require a license issued by the FCC.  You don’t want to inadvertently end up with an FCC enforcement agent knocking on your front door because you used your handheld radio to talk to your wife from your workshop across the yard. For more information about FCC licensing, you should visit this website .  The American Radio Relay League (ARRL) has all the information on how to study for a test and get licenses, including practice tests with the actual questions used on the FCC licensing exam. "Last Minute Update" (as of August 2020) Just as I was closing out this article, I noticed on the Baofeng Tech website a small and hardly noticeable line in their product chart.  I am not sure of the publish date of the Baofeng Tech website.  The chart now lists the Baofeng UV-5R with other discontinued radio models. Checking around the internet, I found that the Baofeng UV-5R is still widely available from other sellers.  I cannot ascertain how long these stocks will last, but if you want a Baofeng UV-5R, it might be wise to shop sooner than later. I still recommend that you spend a little more and buy the newer Baofeng BF-F8HP.  I don’t think you will be disappointed, and the added features will certainly enhance the use of the radio. Getting on the Air No matter which radio you choose, I hope that this article has provided some understanding of the options and differences in the Baofeng UV-5R vs BF-F8HP radios. Don’t forget that to transmit on either of these radios, licensing is required.  If you have questions, comments, or other experiences, please share them in the comments below.

Best Waterproof Rain Jackets and Tactical Jackets

Best Waterproof Rain Jackets and Tactical Jackets

Advertisment The author has grown up around rain all his life, from hurricanes and flood to the light constant rain of the Pacific Northwest. An excellent rain jacket that is dependable, fashionable and most of all functional is an absolute must have. A few considerations before purchasing your rain jacket. What You Need in a Rain Jacket or Parka What temperature extremes do you experience? What kind of rain are you often exposed to? Does camouflage need to be integrated into your clothing? Is the jacket able to integrate into your entire wardrobe? What is your budget and how dependable do you want your gear to be? How breathable does your gear need to be? Breathability is one of the most important factors for rain gear. High humidity from the rain and physical exertion is a recipe for becoming very sweaty. While this is just not pleasant, there is a serious safety factor as well, for instance, if you sweat too much, you can of course become dehydrated, but also in freezing temperatures you could become hypothermic very quickly from sweating in your base layers. MTN tactical recently did a study as to the different kinds of breathable waterproof fabrics and their relation to cost and determined that Breathable jackets can help decrease sweat by as much as 500% when compared to non-breathable jackets. Sweating at baseline can affect how well the “breathable” fabric works. This was evident in a few places in the study’s data.  First, heavier sweaters were less effected by the jackets. Second the harder an athlete worked the less effective the breathability was at removing base layer sweat.  And lastly, anecdotally, the heavier the jacket, the more the athlete sweated and the more sweat was retained in the base layer. Jacket pricing is a product of, among other things, durability, fit, features, fabric, waterproofness, windproof performance and, finally, breathability. The study showed almost no relationship between price and breathability.  In fact, based on this study, less than 9% of the jacket’s cost can be accounted for by its breathability. And finally, their recommendation is that if an athlete’s only concern is finding a cost-effective, waterproof, breathable jacket then, based on this study’s findings, Gore-Tex does not appear to be worth the price.  This study showed that breathable coatings (like the NanoPro) offer superior breathability at a much lower cost. The very idea of a waterproof and breathable shell poses an important question: How can it be breathable, which implies permeability, yet waterproof, which would seem to mean closed like a plastic bag? The outdoor industry has almost decided simultaneously on an answer in the form of a three-layer fabric. This can also be done with less material, but the best winter gear is best made from three layers, made up of an exterior textile, a technical membrane and a backer textile. These are all bonded together and then used to create a jacket. The fabric then prevents outside water from seeping in while also allowing sweat and heat to escape, creating a piece of outerwear that is not only more comfortable but much safer as well especially in cold weather. Heat is allowed to escape so that you can thermoregulate yourself by taking off or putting on more layers as opposed to sweating which can pose problems. Let’s take a look at some jackets that meet these requirements. Contents What You Need in a Rain Jacket or Parka EZRUN Men’s Packable Raincoat North Face Venture Jacket Fireforce Military Ripstop Poncho Outdoor Research Infiltrator Jacket Carhartt Insulated Shoreline Jacket Outdoor Research Helium II Rain Jacket Amazon Essentials Waterproof Rain Jacket Marmot Men’s PreCip Rain Jacket MONTANEFurther Faster Outdoor Tactical Rain Jacket SITKA Vapor Men’s Waterproof Running/Hiking Jacket Final Thoughts on Tactical Rain Jackets EZRUN "Men’s Packable Raincoat" If you don’t have it with you, you can’t wear it. A tiny rain jacket (or poncho) is not what many folks might think of as a viable purchase for serious use but using it as a windbreaker or a rain jacket, this packable rain jacket can provide you with a serious advantage in a situation where the weather has changed quickly. One issue that folks face especially on a trip is that jackets is just take up so much space. The EZRUN men’s packable raincoat is specifically designed to be packed into a very small space, exactly 7 inches square. If you can’t fit this into your pack, you might need to reconsider your priorities. This packable jacket is ready to keep you dry or make the bite of the wind just a bit less, while taking up a very small amount of space in your bag or backpack . This is definitely a budget option but being able to pick up a few of these and throw them in any pack is a great advantage of not having to remember your expensive rain jacket. North Face Venture Jacket Giving you the option to dress for cold, rainy and windy, or just rainy, this jacket truly gives you they ability to take off layers as the weather change even when raining. North Face is a great brand that stands by their product and is used all over the world by adventurers and normal folks alike, so you know it’s going to be a great garment to buy. This is a slightly less expensive jacket than some of the ones on this list, but with low key branding this should be a great choice for international travel as well as domestic. The included sweatshirt interior is a great choice for a chilly morning run and having an option to take only the rain jacket aspect is wonderful as well. Fireforce Military Ripstop Poncho The military has been using rain ponchos like this since World War II and before! While these may not be the most stylish for walking around town, a rain poncho is a staple in kits for a reason, it just keeps you dry and able to move around easily while keeping your stuff dry as well. Ponchos can also be used as a makeshift tent if needed and are easily stored. With different styles of camouflage, you can use these on a hunt as well, but be careful about traveling in thick brush, as the nylon makes a LOT of noise when branches go past the poncho. Again, this is not the most stylish rain option, but years of military service can’t be too far off the mark, put one of these on the ATV for your next hunt so you don’t end up soaked. A lightweight rain jacket like this can be the difference between a miserable day in the field and a comfortable outing, so be prepared. Outdoor Research Infiltrator Jacket Outdoor Research jackets are not cheap, and they are not cheap for a reason. Stretching of waterproof fabric is something that is a very recent innovation, and this should not be taken lightly. There will be a day when this technology is available cheaply, but at the moment, the cutting edge of Gore-Tex technology is stretchable fabric that is also flexible. Outdoor Research jackets are chosen by only the top operators that need the best gear possible to accomplish the mission. The jacket is also designed to be worn underneath body armor, which presents many problems that Outdoor Research has solved for folks that need this sort of feature. Outdoor research is a company that makes equipment for the bleeding edge of combat operations, and if you need something with this much innovation, get ready to pay for it. Carhartt Insulated Shoreline Jacket Carhartt is a very well-known brand in the United States for work wear, and this jacket is no exception. Often when raining, it is also very cold, and neglecting insulation means that you will have to layer, and that is sometimes not a great option. This rain jacket includes storm defender waterproof breathable membrane with fully taped waterproof seams. This means that not even in the most vulnerable parts of the jacket will you have water intrude, keeping you dry during a downpour. Carhartt is known for being a very durable clothing brand with mostly work oriented clothing, and this carries over from their overalls and coveralls to the rain jackets. Outdoor Research Helium II Rain Jacket Another super small rain jacket option. This rain jacket from Outdoor Research (but without the price tag) folds down to the size of a granola bar and weighs in at 6.4 ounces. That is less than a bag of snacks and easy to carry in the pocket of a backpack or even in the pocket of another jacket you’re wearing. This product is not breathable like something using Gore-Tex; however, it will keep you dry, and with a footprint that small, it is a great addition to your pack whether traveling, hunting, or just going back and forth to work. There is something to be said about the difference between an umbrella and a rain jacket, and when it comes to weight alone as well as size, it’s pretty hard to beat this offering from Outdoor Research, especially with the OR name behind it. Amazon Essentials Waterproof Rain Jacket Amazon branded products are built for a reason, they see a market that is open and making large sales, so they get into the product line quickly with something that they know will be a good choice for their buyers. Amazon has been doing products from computer mice to seatbelt extenders, and this rain jacket is no exception for a great price for a good quality item. Coming in 4 colors and a relatively stylish (if a bit low key) look, this is a good option for a rain jacket, especially if you need something that doesn’t only look good with one outfit. Jackets have become a fashion statement all over the world, and sometimes you just want to fade into the background, this is a great option to keep a low profile while staying dry. Marmot Men’s PreCip Rain Jacket Marmot Precip is a great option for a low-cost Gore Tex like fabric. Marmot NanoPro™ coating utilizes a new microporous technology with a pore structure that is 30% smaller than previous generations. These very small, very densely packed pores allow for enhanced breathability while maintaining excellent waterproof performance. This pore structure is also air permeable allowing for air exchange. This air permeability combined with the enhanced breathability creates a fabric that is incredible comfort through a wide range of activities.  Marmot is a leader in outdoor gear made for relatively active individuals but definitely not made for military style operations, so that should be taken into consideration when selecting this jacket. MONTANE Further "Faster Outdoor Tactical" Rain Jacket Montane provides us with another Gore-Tex alternative for breathable fabric that is waterproof as well. With a YKK Aquaguard zipper, the zipper is water resistant as well, which is a common ingress point for water, solved by the most trusted zipper company in the clothing industry. While this may sound like a small selling point, the zipper is usually the first thing to break on a jacket, and the thing you have to interact with every time you put on the jacket, so think about it as an extra nice part of the jacket you get to feel. NeoShell is made by engineering optimal pore size and placement, NeoShell releases heat and perspiration without high pressure build up. Continuous air exchange enhances natural thermoregulation, while still providing the needed protection from all outside elements. All of this at a cost of much less than Gore-Tex jackets, with performance to match. SITKA "Vapor Men’s Waterproof" Running/Hiking Jacket Sitka is one of the top outdoor brands right now, with camouflage clothing that is unmatched by any older camo like Mossy Oak, this jacket incorporates Gore-Tex technology at a lower price than many other jackets. With Gore-Tex shakedry technology, the jacket features a streamlined laminate construction that creates a permanent beading surface and removes the face fabric of the garment, resulting in an incredibly lightweight and 100% waterproof jacket. This is a very durable rain jacket, that will serve you for many years, and be extremely stylish while doing so. Whether hunting or on a morning run in some drizzle, this is a great choice for staying active and dry at the same time. Final Thoughts on "Tactical Rain Jacket" s All of these jackets will keep you dry, some staying in your pocket and some being worn under body armor. Keep in mind that these are only for your top half, and rubber boots and a rain suit are great options depending on what you’re getting involved with. Any of these products will keep you singing in the rain, instead of toting a dorky umbrella, or coming into work soaked to the bone while you figure out how to go to a meeting in wet clothing. For more tactical gear, check out our review of 3V Gear’s Backpacks …the perfect companion on a rainy trek.

[Review] IWI Masada: Optics Ready G19 Killer?

[Review] IWI Masada: Optics Ready G19 Killer?

Trending: Best Places to Buy Ammo Online and [Buyer's Guide] 7 Best AR-15s You’ve likely heard the hype around IWI’s newest offering, a striker-fired, G19-sized, optics ready, pistol for an actually affordable price point. New IWI Masada 9mm Pistol Sounds too good to be true? We got a couple of pre-release pistols in hand for testing and have the real talk about the brand new Masada. But to really see it in action, check out Johnny putting it through his trials and tests! Subscribe to our YouTube Channel to get the newest videos each week. Table of Contents Loading... Who Is IWI? In case you’ve been living in a cave for the last 80+ years, IWI is the Israel Weapon Industries and they’ve been in the firearms game for a long time now. Probably best known for the Tavor, they’ve been a huge name in ammo manufacture, weapons development, and small-arms testing for decades. Israeli Forces with Tavor They know what they are doing and they know how to make a firearm truly combat ready. Introducing The Masada Named after an ancient fortification, the Masada is everything you would expect from a modern carry/duty firearm. Roughly the same size profile as the Glock 19, this gun is good to go right from the box. IWI Masada 9mm Pistol 440 at Palmetto State Armory Prices accurate at time of writing View Details 440 at "Palmetto State Armory" Compare prices (2 found) Palmetto State Armory (See Price) Rainier Arms (See Price) Prices accurate at time of writing Features Great Batman, these gun has features. Basic specs to know, it’s 9mm, short-recoil, and holds 17+1 rounds. Sights a bit basic with a simple 3-dot system, but it also comes optics ready! Plus, you get two of the 17-round steel magazines in the box. IWI MASADA 9mm 17-Round Magazine 29 at GunMag Warehouse Prices accurate at time of writing View Details 29 at GunMag Warehouse Prices accurate at time of writing Setting the Masada apart from the rest of the market are the 3 interchangeable backstraps (okay, those aren’t really unique – but a nice addition that most others are still missing) and the optics plates that are INCLUDED with the gun. From the box the Masada has mounting plates for the Vortex Venom, Sig Romeo1, Leupold DeltaPoint, and Trijicon RMR. Everything about the Masada is modern, it’s optics ready, it comes with two mags, it feels great, and of course, it front slide serrations. Masada front cuts Masada grips are grippy without being a problem either, great balance between the two. If you wanted to run this in a competition, you could get some stippling done – but that isn’t really where the Masada is meant to be. Masada grip The only thing not great about the package is the packaging itself. Sadly, the box is…very bleh. Ultra-thin cardboard is cheap, but it’s not something we love to see. Masada in the box (peppers not included) However, this was a pre-release model so maybe that will change by the time the Masada hits your LGS. Range Report Several hundred rounds of CCI 9mm and the Masada ran to perfection. Accurate, reliable, and very comfy to shoot. Blazer Brass 9mm 8.50 at Palmetto State Armory Prices accurate at time of writing View Details 8.50 at Palmetto State Armory Compare prices (3 found) Palmetto State Armory (See Price) Lucky Gunner (See Price) Brownells (See Price) Prices accurate at time of writing Johnny had some slide-lock-back issues after the mag was spent, but these started to resolve themselves near the end of the test. This could very well just be the Masada breaking in. The extra backstraps make it easy for all hand sizes to find their perfect grip. However, the trigger isn’t outstanding. While no EDC gun has a match grade trigger out of the box that we’ve seen, the Masada’s was extra middle-of-the-road. Not bad, not great. Totally acceptable for EDC. Masada trigger Two Frames In our video and in our pictures the keen-eyed will note that there are two frame types for the Masada. Masada early trigger guard Note the trigger guard, on one frame it is angled sharply and on one frame it is flat. The angled trigger guard was pre-production while the flat guard is the production American version. Masada production trigger guard for the American market This is done for American style flashlights to give them a solid rear contact point. Disassembly Crazy easy. Really one of the easiest pistols to disassemble on the market. Masada takedown bar, so easy! Turn the takedown lever, dry fire the pistol, and let the slide slip off the front. Just that simple. Price Range? The MSRP is at a crazy low $480, but MSRP is rarely the same price as what you’ll see in the store. Since these aren’t on the market yet, we don’t know what street price will be but we’re confident that it will be very affordable. For the features that you get (two mags, optics ready, backstraps, etc) this is an outstanding bang-for-your-buck pistol. Holsters Since this is a brand new gun, holsters are a little harder to find right now. But IWI did work with a lot of the major brands so they could come out with holsters ASAP! CrossBreed has their SuperTuck Deluxe already available for the Masada. If you’re looking for an awesome IBW hybrid holster – this is our top recommendation. CrossBreed SuperTuck Deluxe IWI Masada Holster 69 at CrossBreed Holsters Prices accurate at time of writing View Details 69 at CrossBreed Holsters Prices accurate at time of writing By The Numbers Ergonomics: 4/5 On some level, you’re gripping a giant piece of plastic. But overall good purchase, great grips, and not much to complain about. Accuracy: 4/5 In the hands of another shooter, it may be higher. But it absolutely did what I asked it to do. Customization: 5/5 As stated above, it is optics ready. Add whatever dot or light you want and you’re good to go! Pew Pew Tactical Tested Pistol Red Dots The fire control group is removable, so we’ll see if any third-parties offer new frames down the road. And of course, the rail is able to accept any standard weapon-mounted light! My pick would be the Streamlight TLR-7 . Streamlight TLR-7 102 at Amazon Prices accurate at time of writing View Details 102 at Amazon Compare prices (2 found) Amazon (See Price) Optics Planet (See Price) Prices accurate at time of writing Looks: 5/5 I’m a sucker for the IWI logo, and I think the new Masada branding is clean. Value: 5/5 It’s $480 (or less now). Done. IWI Masada 9mm Pistol 440 at Palmetto State Armory Prices accurate at time of writing View Details 440 at Palmetto State Armory Compare prices (2 found) Palmetto State Armory (See Price) Rainier Arms (See Price) Prices accurate at time of writing Overall: 4.5/5 Parting Shots The IWI Masada is a really compelling EDC gun that’s geared for any role you would normally see a G19, but upgraded in nearly every way. Optics ready, railed for a flashlight, nicely designed, and under $480. We wait for further long-term reliability reports and holster accommodation. While we ran over 500 rounds though the Masada , that is a tiny number in the grand scale. We’ll stay on top of other range reports and your comments to track just how well the Masada does once it is out in the wild. But so far – we are very impressed! What do you look for in a modern pistol? Do you stick with old faithful designs still? Let us know in the comments! Check out our go-to Best CCW Guns (By Caliber) .

New Gun: CMMG Unleashes The Short And Wicked Banshee

New Gun: CMMG Unleashes The Short And Wicked Banshee

/* custom css */.td_uid_2_5f379d10e9886_rand.td-a-rec-img { text-align: left; } .td_uid_2_5f379d10e9886_rand.td-a-rec-img img { margin: 0 auto 0 0; } The lightest and smallest short-barreled rifles and AR pistols CMMG offers, the Banshee line is fightingly nimble. What the compact Banshee line brings to the game: The Banshee line is composed of short-barreled rifles and AR pistols. As expected, the SBRs require NFA registration and tax stamp. The guns are among the smallest and lightest in CMMG’s catalog. The pistol-caliber Banshees weighs in at just over 4.5 pounds, while the rifle caliber is just over 5 pounds. The Banshee is available in four calibers: .22LR, 9mm, .45 ACP and .300 Blackout. The SBR configurations come with CMMG’s innovative Fastback stock. The 9mm and .45 ACP feature the company’s pioneering Radial Delayed Blowback operating system. The Banshee runs from $1,449 to $1,499. Ominously, CMMG’s Mk4 Banshee made its appearance on the national stage this past Friday the 13Th. But the only thing that could prove to be unlucky about the Missouri gunmaker’s wicked new guns are the hoops shooters have to go through to put most in their safe. Yup, the Banshee line is nearly top to bottom NFA regulated — registration, tax, stamps, the whole nine yards. That’s the breaks (illogical as they might be) in the short-barreled rifle world. The company has taken some mercy on the hearts of those who refuse to jump when the ATF says frog, releasing complementary AR pistols in the line’s four calibers. Even so, CMMG gives ample reasons to contemplate doing the Fed’s paper dance; by all accounts, the backpack-portable carbines are sound as oak joists and light as a morning breeze. Related GunDigest Articles Video: Springfield Armory Custom Shop Gems 7 Hot New Handguns For Everyday Carry New Cartridge: SAAMI Publishes Specifications For .224 Valkyrie Best Starter Kit for Concealed Carry: S&W M&P 9 SHIELD $394.96 guns.com Safariland IWB Holster $43.99 brownells.com Safariland Duty Belt $88.99 brownells.com SnagMag Ammo Pouch $LOW! gundigeststore.com Disclosure: Some of these links are affiliate links. Caribou Media Group may earn a commission from qualifying purchases. Thank you! That latter facet isn’t all re-written press release hyperbole either. The guns are plum featherweight. The pistol-caliber Banshees just trips over the 4.5-pound mark, while the rifle-caliber configurations are well within a rounding error of a flat 5 pounds. As those who shoot magnum revolvers know, this is tantalizingly tickling handgun heft — with the benefit of a stock (or brace). CMMG offers the Banshees in .22LR , 9mm, .45 ACP and 300 Blackout , each boasting the shortest barrel the company bores for the calibers. In the case of pistol-calibers that snaps the tape at a nimble 5-inches, while the Blackout measures out at 8 inches. In both cases, the Banshee should prove not only portable, but also as fast handling as they come — particularly in a close-quarters application . The Banshee come decked out, as those familiar with CMMG would suppose. Each version of the Banshee sports the company’s new ambidextrous charging handle, as well as sling plate and safety selector. They come standard with a Cerakote finish, an RML M-LOK Hand Guard and a Magpul MOE Pistol Grip. The AR Pistol versions each come with a Tailhook Mod 2 Brace. The SBR versions come equipped with a Magpul MVG Foregrip and feature CMMG's new RipStock — a new compact buttstock, fully machined out of 6061-T6 aluminum and Cerakoted at the factory. The stock features two of CMMG's patent-pending technologies: Fastback and P3. The former does away with a lever release to deploy the stock and the latter presets the length the stock extends. Handy.

Youre Getting it Wrong: Eight Commonly Misused Gun Terms

Advertisment For eThe gun world abounds with specialized nomenclature. Many misused gun terms are prevalent in the gun world, bringing ire to those who have read their gun terms dictionary. Those who aren’t in the know are bound to use the wrong gun terminology. Even those who call themselves gun nuts have been known to be wrong a time or two. Gun terminology is important. Being correct makes you sound knowledgeable, reasoned, and allows you to carry a legitimate conversation. This is applicable when teaching others about firearms, and even when debating guns and gun control. Being educated and sounding educated are two critical components in gun debates. The more you know, and the less your opponent knows, the more you get to stay on the high ground of the educated. Correct gun terminology is a part of this, so let’s review the most misused gun terms. Contents 1. Clip and Magazine 2. Assault rifle vs Semi-auto rifle 3. Bullet and Shell vs Cartridge or Round 4. Handle and Grip 5. Accuracy and Precision 6. Accidental Discharge Vs Negligent Discharge 7. Machine Gun Vs Fully Automatic 8. Subcompacts Gun Terms: Be Smart, Get it Right! 1. Clip and Magazine This is often one of the most misused gun terms that drives gun enthusiasts crazy. This is the biggest and most popular gun term people wrongly interchange. Where the confusion between the two came from is the swap from rifles like the M1 Garand to the M14. For some reason, the confusion between a magazine and a clip entered mainstream culture. While it’s the most common, it’s also the most cringe-worthy. Saying clip when you mean magazine is one the best ways to out yourself as an amateur. Being educated and sounding educated are two different things. To be educated, you need to know the difference. A clip is a device that is used to hold ammo to quickly reload a magazine. Clips were essential to weapons during the pre-WW2 and Korean War-era. Bolt action battle rifles like the Mosin Nagant and Springfield 1903 could be rapidly reloaded with stripper clips to keep them in the fight. These weapons had internal magazines that the stripper clips loaded. In World War 2, the M1 Garand rose to prominence with its semi-automatic action and internal magazine. The En Bloc clip was essential to its function and to its battlefield supremacy. Weapons like the SKS had internal magazines that still relied on stripper clips for rapid reloads. With the invention of detachable magazines, clips became less and less common. Detachable magazines were a convenient and rapid method to put the weapon back into action after it ran dry. A magazine both holds ammunition and feeds the weapon. Clips are still used to this day for loading magazines. The ammunition issued by the U.S. military comes on stripper clips and has one-speed loader per bandolier. This allows troops to rapidly load magazines. So, when discussing magazines and clips: if it feeds the weapon and holds ammo it is a magazine. If it holds ammo and loads magazines it is a clip. 2. Assault rifle vs Semi-auto rifle Not all semi-auto rifles are Assault weapons. In fact, most aren’t. This gun term is misused for three reasons: the media, mistaken gun identity, and general firearm ignorance. The term assault rifle has a very specific designation. Ever since the first assault rifle came to be the term was used and fit. The first assault rifle that was successful is largely credited as the German STG 44, or the Sturmgewehr. It literally means Storm rifle, and storm is often a synonym for assault in the military. An Assault rifle, as defined by the Defense Department, is a short, compact, selective-fire weapons that fire a cartridge intermediate in power between submachine gun and rifle cartridges. An assault rifle, by definition, has to be select fire. Select fire being the ability to fire in both semi-automatic and fully automatic modes. So a standard AR 15 is not an assault rifle. 99.99 percent of semi-automatic rifles in civilian hands are not assault rifles, but simply semi-automatic rifles that are fun to equip with your favorite optic . Cosmetic features may scare some less intelligent people, but they don’t make the weapon deadlier in any way. 3. Bullet and Shell vs Cartridge or Round Know the differences so you are educated with other firearms enthusiasts. Many people use the gun term “bullet” to apply to a whole round of ammunition. This is incorrect on many levels. Some people use the term shell to refer to cartridges as well, and this is equally incorrect. A cartridge is the proper name for a complete round of ammunition. Round is another gun term that is accurate and acceptable. A round or cartridge is made of several different components put together. Bullets and shells are just components of a cartridge. A cartridge is made up of a projectile aka a bullet, a case, aka a shell, a primer, and gunpowder. Calling cartridges bullets is akin to calling them gunpowder. 4. Handle and Grip A gun handle is not a grip. This gun term isn’t heard as often as the others, but when heard will grind the gears of the gun-knowledgable. There is a massive difference between a handle and a grip. Sure, both use your hands, but that is where the differences end. A grip, like a pistol grip or a vertical grip, is designed to give you control over the weapon. They help a shooter aim, access the weapon’s controls, and then control the weapon during firing. A handle is most commonly found on medium and light machine guns. These handles make carrying a heavy weapon easy for admin movements. A machine gun like the M240 isn’t ergonomic for easy carry, so a carry handle is a convenient way to place it from place to place. A grip is used to fire and control, handle, and fire the weapon and a handle is used to carry the weapon. 5. Accuracy and Precision Accuracy and Precision don’t mean the same thing. Even experienced shooters mistake these gun terms. What’s interesting about this nomenclature mistake is that it is made in other categories as well. Outside of firearms, the mistake can be made with science and experiments, as well as with watches. It is completely possible to be both accurate and precise. Precision measures the closeness of two or more shots fired from a rifle. For example, if you were shooting at a target and aiming at the center of the target. If you missed the center of the target but consistently landed shots in the left corner, you still shoot with precision. Accuracy measures how close you are to the target. For example, If you are aiming at a target and striking the bullseye, but the shots are hitting the top, bottom, left and right side of the bullseye, you aim with accuracy, but not precision. If you aim at a bullseye and strike everywhere on the target, then you are neither accurate nor precise. If you aim at a bullseye and strike the bullseye in one small grouping you are both accurate and precise. 6. Accidental Discharge Vs Negligent Discharge Every gun owner should learn the legalities of discharging their weapon. Safe gun users often mistake these gun terms. There is a big difference between an accident and negligence. An accident is something that cannot be predicted and cannot be prevented through basic means. Negligence is something that could have been stopped, but due to human error was not. An accidental discharge is extremely rare for a modern firearm. Firearms do not simply go off. An example of a possible accidental discharge would be a runaway gun with a machine gun. Another can happen with older single and double barrel weapons. The firing pins can be stuck outwards. A stuck firing pin can cause the weapon to fire when the breach is closed. A negligent discharge is easily preventable by following the basic safety rules. If you keep your finger straight and off the trigger of a modern firearm, it cannot and will not fire. Negligent discharges are caused by unsafe behavior with a firearm. 7. Machine Gun Vs Fully Automatic Not every fully automatic gun is a machine gun. This gun term can be debated. The ATF defines a ‘machine gun’ as any weapon that fires more than one round per pull of a trigger. The military community defines a machine gun as a fully automatic designed to lay down suppressive fire on a target. Military machine guns are often belt-fed weapons that serve a squad or platoon support role. The ATF will define an M16 as a machine gun, where the military will not. Other categories of fully automatics weapons besides machine gun is assault rifle, sub machine gun, and machine pistol. 8. Subcompacts Subcompact is an often misused term. Subcompact has become a catch-all gun term for small automatic pistols. It hasn’t been applied to revolvers yet, but it wouldn’t be a surprise. All sorts of firearms are now called subcompacts. This includes pocket pistols like the LCP, to S&W Bodyguard and Walther PPK. These are individual firearms that are not the compact or subcompact variant of any other firearm. A subcompact must have a bigger brother if you will. The Glock 26 is a subcompact pistol, the compact version is the Glock 19 and the Glock 17 is the full-sized version . A subcompact pistols come from a family of pistols with the same operating mechanism, ammunition, and magazine. Gun Terms: Be Smart, Get it Right! Learning proper firearm nomenclature can go a long way to making you not look like a fool. If you are ever unsure start asking question, start researching and you’ll find yourself on the right side of the gun debate. More than that, you’ll avoid looking like the “new guy” or “new girl” when it comes to discussing firearms with your fellow gun nuts. You may also be able to educate others in the proper terms. If you can learn anything from this though, please don’t call a magazine a clip .

3V Gear Backpacks Top Quality Thats Affordable

Looking back, I can recall receiving a new backpack at the beginning of every new school year. Which reminds me, I have been out of high school for over 10 years now—does that make me old? Anyway, my backpacks would always wear out and need replacing, sometimes even half way through the school year. Because of all the other supplies needed, I am sure my parents (who were the purchasers then) didn’t necessarily want to spend too much on a backpack. But, now I wonder, why can’t an affordable bag be durable as well? This pondering has brought me to the subject of this review: 3V Gear Backpacks. I found the 3V Gear Outlaw Sling Pack to be just the right size for an every day gear bag. Notice the Velcro patch area on the front and MOLLE on the side. Over a year ago, I obtained a couple of backpacks from a newer company called 3V Gear (“ Vini, vidi, vici. ” 3V. Get it? I though it was pretty clever, anyway.). I wanted to thoroughly test and evaluate them before writing a review. Well, now that it has been what I feel is enough time (over a year’s worth of use) for me to determine how they hold up, here is my experience. Price and Features Let me start by saying that I have never used or owned backpacks from expensive manufacturers. The only real reason for this is only due to their cost. In general, I’d rather spend my money on firearms or ammunition instead of a gear bag, but that doesn’t mean that I don’t still use and shop for them. I use the water bottle holder on the 3V Gear Outlaw to hold my large bottles of energy drinks since I work nights. It has an adjustable cinch to keep the bottles or can contained. The one strap design on the 3V Gear Outlaw lets me wear it on one shoulder, or across my back or front. Even when it is strapped on my back, I can just spin it to the front to get access to the compartments without having to remove it. What I can say for certain though, is that these 3V Gear backpacks offer many of the same features as more expensive backpacks for a price that I consider more affordable. Before I get into how my 3V Gear backpacks have stood up over the past year or so, here are the features they are sporting: "Outlaw Sling Pack" ($49.99 MSRP/ $38.00 Amazon ) Made with with heavy (600D) nylon. 684 total cubic inches of storage. 3 separate zippered compartments with pockets/dividers inside. Can be worn in the front while still having access to contents. MOLLE and PALS compatible. Hydration bladder compatible. Allows for cross-body style wear. Para-cord loop pulls on all zippers. Water bottle pocket holds up to a 32 oz. bottle. Velcro ID/Patch panel. Lifetime warranty . The storage capacity of the 3V Gear Velox II is massive. I am sometimes surprised by the amount of range related gear that I can fit inside of it. My 3V Velox II Tactical Assault stays in place when I buckle both the sternum and waist straps. The shoulder straps are padded too so I can wear it for a longer period, which I had to do at SHOT Show 2014. Velox II Tactical Assault Pack ($69.99 MSRP/ $55.00 Amazon ) Meade with heavy (600D) nylon. 1628 total cubic inches of storage. 4 zippered storage compartments with internal pockets/dividers and storage Para-cord loop pulls on all zippers. MOLLE and PALS compatible. Reinforced “drag handle.” Expandable external pockets. Hydration bladder compatible. Two adjustable padded shoulder straps. Compression straps on the side and top. Adjustable hip and sternum straps. Velcro ID/Patch panel. Lifetime warranty . Each zipper has a para-cord loop and both of my 3V Gear backpacks also came with a 3V Gear logo PVC patch stuck on the Velcro section. How Have They Held Up? To put it simply, both of these bags have held up great. I use the Outlaw almost every day for work. This means that it’s in and out of my car, thrown around, opened and closed multiple times per day and just plain loaded up with “stuff.” I even use the front MOLLE section as a pen holder—adaptability, no? The Velox II is my range bag that I load with magazines, ammunition, hearing protection, heavy shooting rests and other range related items. This is also the bag that traveled with me to SHOT Show 2014 . This backpack survived the abuse it endured from Minnesota to Las Vegas and back. This includes the airports, security, the hotel, media room and most importantly, the airplane. I have owned traditional luggage that I cannot say the same for. With both backpacks, I have not experienced any broken zippers, clips, snaps or straps. Even the zipper loops of para-cord that run through the zippers have not become un-knotted. From experience with other (lower quality) bags. I was sure that at least one would become loose, but none of them have. There have also been zero holes or rips created in the material, even on the bottoms of the backpacks. Considering the amount of time that each backpack has been dropped and dragged on its bottom, zipped opened and closed, loaded (I will even admit, sometimes overloaded) and unloaded, mark me as impressed. Remember, this is after a solid year of use by me. Well, technically speaking, since I obtained them in June of 2013 it would be a year, one month, a couple weeks and a day or two. Final Thoughts Considering the durability and that the cost of both of these backpacks combined may still be less than a single backpack from a more expensive manufacturer, I would recommend 3V Gear backpacks to anyone. This is especially true because these 3V Gear backpacks do not hold back on features. Ample storage, pockets, compartments, padded shoulder straps, water bladder integration, MOLLE webbing and even Velcro sections for your favorite morale patches are all features included. If you are in the market for a new range bag, duty bag, bug-out bag, first aid bag, every-day-bag or even a backpack for school, then you may want to take a look at what 3V Gear has to offer.

Summary

Baofeng Tech is a Chinese company that produces a wide range of radios that operate in the Amateur Radio Frequency ranges.   The radios imported by Baofeng and other distributors into the U. S.