Recommended for the Range
Gun Tests readers dig into head-to-head rifle tests to see if a big-ticket item is something they may want to buy. But there are always some less-expensive products that we use during firearms testing which deserve mention when they deliver a lot utility for the buck. Here are three accessories used in the July 2013 CZ 527 Special Report and the September 2013 17 HMR story we thought were worth the money.
A Simple Dust Cover Solution
Readers Price and Singletary point out a neat trick for popping up the ejection-port cover on an AR-15. Readers Troy and Steve worry about grade inflation with the Tavor TAR-21 bullpup
Outfitting Your Rifle: We Try Triggers, Stocks, and Magazines
In the September 2013 issue we tested three of the AR-15 rifle types, and found some limitations among them. For example, we replaced the horrid trigger in the Bushmaster Carbon-15 with one of the excellent Geissele (pronounced GUYS-lee) SSA-E triggers. That trigger was such a revelation we immediately wanted to replace the triggers in the other two with the aftermarket ones on hand, but waited until now to try them.
9mm Short-Barrel Choice: We’d Carry 124-Grain Speer Gold Dots
Among the most-popular concealed-carry handguns is the 9mm compact pistol. From the immensely popular mini Glocks to the Sig P290, there are quite a few pistols of this type in service. That’s not hard to understand why: in the same frame size, the 9mm is more powerful than the 380 ACP, and when compared to a similarly sized wheelgun, most 9mms offer more shots than a 38 Special. But many carriers who like the portability of a small 9mm pistol with a lot of shots worry how the 9mm compact’s terminal ballistics compare to the same rounds shot out of a full-size gun.
Down Range: October 2013
In the August 2013 issue, Ray Ordorica compared two full-size 9mm pistols, a surplus CZ 75 (about $350) and a new Tokarev M70A, made in Serbia by Zastava (about $330). The CZ, designed in 1975 and with more than a million having been built, is one of very few DA/SA pistols that can be carried cocked and locked. The CZ is big and stout enough that even the hottest 9mm ammo with the heaviest bullets would hardly kick enough to disturb the composure of the weakest-handed shooter.
Shopping for a Polymer 9mm: We Test CZ, Sphinx, & Walther
We recently had the good fortune to have three interesting 9mm polymer-frame handguns come our way. Two of them are new to these pages, the Walther PPX M1 No. 2790025, $450; and the Kriss Sphinx SDP Compact, $1295. This marks the first time we’ve ever tested a Sphinx of any sort, and the PPX is a new model. They were joined in this shootfest by a handgun we’ve tested two times previously, the CZ USA CZ 75 P-07 Duty, $528, but in a new variation, the No. 91178, which has tall sights and a threaded barrel to accommodate a suppressor. Those seemingly minor changes to what has been a Grade B gun improved it in our eyes, even if we weren’t going to fit it with a can.
Affordable Defense Shotguns: Benelli, Stevens, CZ Compete
Unlike the conflicts with bad guys depicted on television and in the movies, a home owner in a self-defense situation will rarely fire more than one or two shots. In most cases, the owner of a firearm specifically designed to stop the threat of an intruder will never fire even one shot in their home because they will never be put in such a position.