Meopta Optics, Part 2: the MeoTac 1-4×22 RD tactical scope

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In the first installment I told you about the Meopta M-RAD 3 MOA sight, which is what originally attracted me to the line of rifle sights from Meopta Sports Optics. For a red dot sight it’s great: rugged, reliable, holds zero. (I keep mentioning the “holds zero” part only because I’ve used some red dots which wouldn’t!) This review will cover their MeoTac 1-4×22 RD tactical scope and how it differs from the M-RAD.

The problem with the electronic red dot ...

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Meopta Optics, Part 1: the M-RAD red dot sight

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Early in The Bullpup Experiment I mentioned that I had a few issues with the stock Steyr optic: while a good product, it fit neither my physical make-up nor my eyesight issues. I also mentioned that I contacted the folks at Meopta Sports Optics to find an alternative, and that they had sent out a couple of their products for me to use and abuse as part of my little experiment. Today I’d like to tell you a little ...

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The Bullpup Rifle Experiment, Part 1: why would I do such a thing?

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As you may know, I’m a proponent of the rifle as a defensive tool — particularly for what I refer to as “perimeter defense”, which are threats at distances beyond which we think of the pistol as a more suitable tool, and for defense of a fortified or ensconced position (like being barricaded in your safe room.) The rifle’s greater power, greater precision, and corresponding ability to deliver both at extended distances makes it a formidable tool in the correct ...

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What were the best things I saw at the NRA Show? Tables and foam!

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As you may have heard, I attended the annual NRA Show & Meetings this last weekend (frankly, I only go for the show; the internal machinations of the NRA interest me not in the least) and I did see a couple of things that were pretty darned neat.

The NRA Show is the largest consumer trade show in the shooting industry, with some 500 vendors showing their wares and everything open to any NRA member who wants to attend. It’s the ...

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How safe is your safe? You might be surprised at how safe it’s not!

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 Owning guns is a great responsibility, and one of those is keeping them out of the wrong hands. A safe is one way to do that, but how to you choose from the hundreds of models available?
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Buying a gun safe is no trivial matter. We want a device (a box, if you will) that will keep bad people from getting to our guns, and usually to also keep those firearms relatively unscathed should fire break out.The trouble ...
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Two new revolver holsters from Crossbreed and DeSantis.

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I’m always looking for good revolver holsters. It seems we get the short end of the stick from everyone! This week, however, there are a couple of new holsters I’d like to bring to your attention, as they both offer something unique.

The first is the DeSantis Ammo Nemesis. It’s a synthetic pocket holster for a small revolver (J-frame, possibly a Detective Special.) The outside of the holster has a very grippy rubber covering, which should help keep ...

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A new source for old books – and a special discount to boot!

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I love old shooting books. Not necessarily because the information is strictly correct or useful (many times it’s neither), but simply because they’re interesting. They give us a glimpse into how shooting technique and equipment have evolved, and more importantly they document the characters who brought us to where we are today.

For instance, I’d never recommend “No Second Place Winner” as a book on good defensive shooting technique. Even so it’s still worth reading to see how a great shooter ...

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Back from SHOT Show 2013, Part Two: Gear.

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I don’t really go to SHOT to look at gear, but on Friday I had the whole day to get out and look at stuff. Prior to that I only saw gear on a “hit and miss” basis as I ran between appointments and meetings. Here’s what I managed to see:

– The first thing I have to report (and the most exciting for revolver enthusiasts) is that Korth, the top-tier German revolver maker, is looking for a ...

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Smoke detectors and your rifle: how does a red dot fit into this?

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I recently read an ongoing discussion about red dot sights on defensive rifles, and it got me to thinking about their utility to the defensive shooter.

First off, I like red dot sights when I’m shooting. My eyes are unable to focus cleanly on the front sight of a 16-1/2″ barreled AR-15, and the red dot makes it easier for me to shoot. Not that I can’t shoot with irons, only that it takes a little more effort. Red dots are ...

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Big news. REALLY BIG news! I’ve written my first book!

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Mark your calendars: in late October, Gun Digest Books will release a brand new title: The Gun Digest Book of the Revolverwritten by yours truly!

That’s right, I’ve finally written my first book, and it’s a doozy. With 240 pages and over 200 illustrations (all mine, except for the cover photo) it’s a general guide to the world of the double action revolver. It covers all kinds of things a revolver shooter needs to know: how ...

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Mixing units, or how not to make buying decisions.

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This popped up on my radar this morning, and I was so annoyed by the misuse of scientific data that I bumped today’s post to comment.

The advertisement, from a European maker of flashlights, claims that the sun produces 6,000 lumens; which, conveniently, is less than their flashlights at a claimed 10,000 lumens. Let’s give them the benefit of the doubt (though as you’ll see I don’t think they deserve it) and accept that their product does in ...

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To progress requires change, but not all change is progress.

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I’ve been bombarded with emails over the last couple of days about (yet another) lever action rifle adorned with a red dot scope. I’ve heard it called everything from “tactical cowboy” to “poor man’s Scout Rifle”, but all such sobriquets miss the point.

The lever action rifle, as historically outfitted, has never really seemed to need the red dot.

Please understand that I’m all for moving forward. I’m a technology junkie; I love what is new and demonstrably better. Sometimes, though, we ...

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In Oregon, we’re used to rust. That doesn’t mean we put up with it on our guns, and here’s how we avoid it!

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That doesn’t mean that we like it, however!

A recent email from a reader asked about protecting guns from rust in long-term storage. There are many approaches to the problem, most of them involving some type of coating or oil.

My preferred technique has long been wrapping the piece in a Volatile Corrosion Inhibitor (VCI) paper. VCI paper is coated with chemicals that vaporize to provide a protection layer against moisture and rust. Properly used in a sealed container (like a Zip-Loc ...

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Mil-dots. iPhones. It had to happen.

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From The Firearm Blog comes news about a new iPhone/iPod Touch app called Mil-Dot Rangefinder which claims to “take the math out of ranging targets.” Intriguing idea.

Sadly I have no mil-dot scopes in my inventory; several scopes with rangefinding reticles, but no mil-dots. This app is therefore useless for me, but looks pretty neat and will probably be of great value to those who do have appropriate optics.

I must admit that I feel my ...

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Hope for the terminally myopic? A new optical sight enhancement looks promising.

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The Firearm Blog alerted me to this post over at accurateshooter.com. A new sighting enhancement, making use of a “zone plate” optic, is due to hit the market soon. The device makes it possible to focus on both near and far objects at the same time, without the penalty of large, expensive optical systems.

I’ll be anxious to try one of these on a rifle. My eyes cannot focus on close objects without optical help, ...

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Perfectly suited: concealed carry (for men) in a professional environment.

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I get a surprising number of inquiries about carrying in an office (suit and tie) environment. I spent a few years wearing expensive Italian suits (and a few actual custom suits) while selling to upper-echelon corporate types, so I’m passingly familiar with the problems involved.

There are a number of ways to carry a gun in a suit: belt holster, shoulder holster, pocket carry, bellyband, Thunderwear (aka ‘crotch carry’), and in an ankle holster.

Belt and shoulder holsters can be considered together, ...

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Reality – what a concept. You’ve got to learn to recognize what it is, however.

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Yesterday, Tam asked “I laugh at the sight of the pimped tactical N-frame, too, but why?” Allow me to explain with some fuzzy dice.

Yes. You read that correctly – fuzzy dice.

If you go to a car show featuring hotrods from the ’50s and ’60s, a common sight will be a pair fuzzy dice hanging from the rearview mirror. They’re always carefully chosen to complement the paint color, and I’ve even seen fastidious owners arranging the dice “just ...

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Lights on revolvers: bringing wheelguns into the modern age??

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I recently received an email asking about the feasibility of mounting a light on a revolver. The writer was concerned about clearing his house at night and being forced to shoot one-handed with a separate flashlight. Would it be possible, he asked, to somehow mount a light to his wheelgun, to approximate those that are widely mounted on autoloaders?

That’s a tough one to answer, because it’s really two questions in one: can it be done, and should it be done.

I’ll ...

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Coffee and miracle lubricants: what’s the connection? Marketing.

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Coffee is one of those vices in which I do not indulge. Not from any religious objection, mind you – it’s just that I can’t stand the taste of the stuff. I admit to loving the smell of brewing java, but coffee is one of those things that smells a whole lot better than it tastes!

Stay with me, I’ll get to the point.

A number of years ago I knew a district sales manager for one of the major coffee companies. ...

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Lessons on AR-15 accessories that you only learn from watching lots of students.

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This past weekend marked the last rifle class my friend Georges Rahbani is teaching for the year. As I often do, I assisted him with his class and, as often happens, we came away with what some  people consider unusual opinions about rifles and gear validated and vindicated.

Georges has a funny saying: “thou shalt not hang sh*t on thy rifle!” His point is that adding geegaws to a basically sound firearm rarely improves shooter performance, and often results in lessened mechanical performance. The ever-popular ...

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More lessons from Hunter’s Sight-In Day: bad equipment equals bad results. Don’t be a cheapskate.

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For some background, read my last  post.

Today’s lession: you can shoot no better than your gear.  This is interesting both for what happened, and the frequency with which it happened.

The three of us (me, and my friends Georges and Maurice) were working sight-in days at our gun club. Since we’re all instructors of some experience, we were given the job of overseeing the benches reserved for “problems”: those shooters and guns ...

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On rifle scope magnification: how much is enough, and what is too much?

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Moving back to the farm as I recently did has changed my shooting habits. I’m shooting a larger amount of rimfire rifle lately, not just for fun but also predator/pest control.

For all the years I lived in suburbia (which is a Kafkaesque purgatory for a simple, ignorant country boy like me) I did all of my shooting at the gun club. When I shot rimfire there I invariably took the only scoped .22 rifle in my inventory, forsaking the other ...

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Sight options for the defensive handgun.

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Much as it pains me to admit this, my eyesight is degrading with distressing rapidity. No, it’s nothing out of the ordinary, nor is it anything serious – it’s just that I’m getting older!

I’m close enough to the big “five-oh” to count the years left on one hand (with fingers left over), and the closer it gets the further out I need to hold the restaurant menu. Oh, yes, my prescription is current – but after wearing bifocals for the ...

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“Bullshit Tenths.”

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Pardon my French!

This is a term used by tool & die makers to indicate unobtainable levels of (perceived) precision. Why do I bring this up?

Last week, I was advising a reader on selecting pin gages for use in measuring chamber throats. The discussion revolved around which gages to buy, and whether or not he needed both plus- and minus-tolerance gages (no, in case you’re wondering.) He was concerned about their variance of .0002″ (that’s 2/10,000th of an inch, or 1/20th ...

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Getting your gun engraved.

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The lure of a personalized and decorated weapon is centuries old. Embellished swords and knives from the 17th and 18th centuries are well known; before that, soldiers in high standing had their armor decorated. Some of the earliest firearms in existence are lavishly treated, with inlays and fine woods.

Today many people desire to have their favorite guns engraved. But where to start? There are so many engraving styles, not to mention engravers, and asking someone to recommend an engraver without ...

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Revolver grips: finger grooves or plain?

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Many people ask me where to get finger grooved grips for various guns (often for the Colt Python, but the Ruger GP-100 seems to be a common request as well.) Personally, I usually try to talk them out of that style grip, and I’d like to share my reasoning.

First, the grooves rarely fit any given person perfectly; for my hands, for instance, every grooved grip I’ve ever tried required me to spread my fingers to an uncomfortable degree. If I ...

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Lubrication 101: Gun oil, snake oil, and how to tell the difference.

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Introduction

Firearms enthusiasts are the targets (pardon the pun) of some of the most misleading advertisements regarding the proper lubrication of their guns. The purpose of this article is to give a background on basic lubrication concepts, the technology behind them, and some guidelines for selecting lubricants based on facts, not hype.

Before going further, let’s make something perfectly clear: with a very few obvious exceptions, firearms lubrication isn’t terribly difficult. Compared to many more common objects, guns just don’t make big ...

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