The AR-15 is undoubtedly America’s most popular rifle, and for good reason. It does a ton of things well. It offers a fun day at the range without much recoil or muzzle blast, it is a good choice for hunting (when chambered correctly), and it serves as my top pick for home defense. While it doesn’t really matter how an AR is set up in those first two scenarios, any AR-15 used for self-defense needs a sling, weapon light, and optic to effective.
Few firearm components have seen as much political interest as the AR-15 magazine. Anything that draws the attention of politicians (and a potential ban) is worth understanding, owning, and voting to protect. Deciding to own a few extra AR-15 magazines is always a good idea, but the issue of which magazines to buy almost always surfaces. Do you go with 10-, 20-, 30-, or 40-rounds?
Knowing what ammunition to stuff in the magazine of an AR-15 depends on the task at hand. So often, we buy ammunition with the price exclusively in mind and give little consideration to the expectations placed on the bullet. If poking holes in paper is all that’s required, the cheapest ammunition available will certainly do. However, if pest control or home defense is the assignment, careful consideration of bullet weight and construction is a top priority.
The logic behind the doubletap comes from the fact that defensive handguns are rather poor at wounding, but they can be used to deliver multiple shots on target quickly. With the doubletap, you’re shooting twice so that you don’t shoot once and have to reevaluate and shoot again. If your two shots fail to neutralize the threat, firing the third shot to the head—known as the failure drill—is the answer. However, other terms also describe this two-shot action and mean almost exactly the same thing.
Optic options abound for the AR-15. The most popular choices are red dot sights, low-powered variable optics, and prism sights like the military-issued ACOG. Each of these choices has strengths and weaknesses, the trick is to find the glass that best fits your needs.
The shotgun is a popular home defense firearm. To be used effectively in that role, the person wielding it needs to understand its effective range and limitations. You don’t want to use your home defense shotgun in a manner that might endanger innocent bystanders or family members. But at the same time, you would also like to ensure that your defensive shotgun is effective.
In the history of metallic cartridges, the 40 S&W is unique. Like a boy band pushed to prominence by millions of teenage girls, cops across the United States made the .40 S&W incredibly popular. Shortly after its introduction in 1990 it was the most popular cartridge for the law enforcement handgun. However, it turned out the .40 S&W’s half-life was only about 25 years. It’s quarter century reign as the policemen’s pistol was ended by the very agency that inspired its creation.
Handgun stopping power does exist, but not in the way most think of it. The fastest and most reliable means of handgun stopping power is the fear that getting shot or having been shot induces. When you start having to rely on perfect shot placement and the ability of a bullet to create enough damage or pain to cause immediate incapacitation or the cessation of hostile activates, your chances of instantaneously stopping a threat are drastically reduced.
The Failure Drill was conceived by Gunsite Academy founder, former Marine, and gun writer, Jeff Cooper. It consists of placing two center-of-mass shots on the target followed by a single shot to the target's head. It is one of the most pratical and useful shooting drills and can be conducted in two ways—as a skill drill and as a tactical drill. This article explains each.
Mono-metal bullets for handguns ican be designed to open – deform/expand – over wider velocity ranges. This means that mono-metal handgun bullets are less sensitive to velocity variations, such as when they might be shot from a two-inch or six-inch barrel. They open immediately after impact and deform very consistently, making them ideal for not only self-defense handguns but for hunting handguns too.