Contents

The best spotting scope tripod for you is out there. But it’s difficult to wade through the number of choices that are available. We’ve handpicked eight different products that are considered the best available.

Best Spotting Scope Tripods | Complete Buyers Guide For 2020

Best Spotting Scope Tripods | Complete Buyers Guide For 2020The best spotting scope tripod for you is out there. But it’s difficult to wade through the number of choices that are available. We’ve handpicked eight different products that are considered the best available. One of these might be your next addition. But there are always a couple of factors and even some personal preferences you may have that can influence a decision. At a Glance: Our Top Picks for Spotting Scope Tripods OUR TOP PICK: AmazonBasics 60-Inch Lightweight Tripod with Bag Vortex Optics Pro GT Tripod Series Vanguard VS-82 Table Top Tripod BEST BUDGET OPTION: Bushnell 784030 Advanced Tripod Vanguard Alta Pro 263AB Comparison of the Best "Spotting Scope Tripod" s IMAGE PRODUCT Our Top Pick AmazonBasics 60- "Inch Lightweight Tripod" with Bag Lightweight; Weighs in At Around Three Pounds Quick-Release Plate for Fast Transition Compatible With Scopes, Cameras, Smartphone Adapters, etc. View Latest PriceRead Customer Reviews Vortex Optics Pro GT Tripod Series Extends From 67.1 Inches and Folds Down to 24 Inches, Making it Versatile Backed With a Lifetime Warranty Quick-Release Plate for Faster Attachment and Detachment. "View Latest Price" → "Read Customer Reviews" Vanguard VS-82 Table Top Tripod Maximum Load of 5.5 Pounds Two-way Panhead for 360-Degree Movement. Non-Slip Rubber Feet for Excellent Support. View Latest PriceRead Customer Reviews Best Budget Option "Bushnell 784030 Advanced" Tripod Lowest Height is 18 Inches and Can Extend to 61 Inches Padded Foam Leg Cushions for Added Comfort in Either Hot or Cold Conditions. Three-Way Pan and Tilt Head for Easy Movement View Latest PriceRead Customer Reviews Vanguard Alta Pro 263AB Adjustable Leg Angles With Three Different Angle Settings. 15.4 Pound Maximum Load Quick-Flip Legs and Rubber Feet Equipped With Retractable Spikes to Ensure It Stays on the Ground, Even in Windy Conditions. View Latest PriceRead Customer Reviews Celestron 82050 TrailSeeker Tripod (Black) Sturdy Aluminum Offering that Folds From 19 Inches and Extends to 71 iInches Comes With a Case and a Shoulder Strap so That it’s Easy to Carry Legs Can Be Set to Three Different Angles View Latest PriceRead Customer Reviews Orion 5378 Paragon HD-F2 Heavy Duty Tripod Can Be Fully Extended to 72 Inches High Tri-Braced Legs for Enhanced Stability and Spiked Feet To Accommodate Any Terrain Provides Stable Support for Large Binoculars and Scopes View Latest Price Read Customer Reviews Vortex Optics Summit Tripod Series Balance Hook to Hold the Tripod in Place While Situated in Windy Conditions Aluminum Legs for Sturdy Support and Rubber Feet for Solid Footing on Wet Surfaces Three-Way Pan Head for Smooth Vertical and Horizontal Adjustments View Latest PriceRead Customer Reviews Do I Need A Tripod For My Spotting Scope? Cutting to the chase: yes. And there are a few good reasons why you do need one. When you’re out and about, you’ll need the scope to remain stable while you’re looking through it. This especially goes for when you’re out hunting. Scope stability is the difference between making a target in one second and losing it the next. Source One major advantage of having a tripod is providing stability for the scope while you're either hunting, taking pictures, or just exploring the outdoors. Some scopes are lightweight, while others are considered "heavy" and weigh around ten pounds. Another advantage is you can quickly deploy your scope while you're moving from one place to the next. You can simply attach the scope and carry it around without in your hand. Aspects to Consider Before Buying Aside from your personal preferences, there’s always going to be an aspect or two that you need to consider before making your final decision on which spotting scope tripod you want to purchase. Buyers have often considered these aspects to be important in their purchasing decision: Your Intent or Purpose ​ Not all scopes are designed to be all-purpose. Some of them are the best fit for a certain use. For example, one spotting scope would be perfect for hunters because it is lightweight and easy to deploy so hunters won't miss their next opportunity at bagging another deer or whatever they are hunting. Versatility​ ​ Today, there are products on the market that are completely versatile in their use. Some users have hunting benches and have relied on tabletop models. Others use standing models. If you want the best of both worlds, it's important to find a stand that not only can extend itself to a certain height, but also one that you can adjust low enough for the feeling of a tabletop scope. Standing Tripod for Target Shooting ( Source ) Stability​ ​ One of the chief advantages of a spotting scope tripod is stability. The materials used often play huge roles in long-term stability and durability. At the same time, it's not just the legs that play a role. The feet may come with something like rubber to ensure that the scope is on stable ground and can hold it for as long as it's attached. Ease Of Use​ ​ No one wants a tripod that is difficult to use. You want the scope to move easily, swivel around, and so on. Some stands will likely be equipped with a hydraulic system that will make the user experience much easier. Additional Accessories​ ​ Some products come with additional accessories. Some don’t. In other words, will you only get the legs? Or will you get any additional accessories like a head? The easiest thing to do is get one that may come with the additional accessories. While it may cost a bit more, it is worth the value and extra expense. Quick Take - The Best Spotting Scope Tripods These are our recommendations for the best models: AmazonBasics 60-Inch Lightweight Tripod with Bag Vortex Optics Pro GT Tripod Series Vanguard VS-82 Table Top Tripod Review of the Best Spotting Scope Tripods Below are eight of the best spotting scope tripods on the market right now. It is imperative that you look through each of them carefully to see if one of them is the right fit for you. If you’re interested in more than one, sometimes it’s better to play a game of “process of elimination” based on which feature you want the most. Best Overall: ​ AmazonBasics 60-Inch Tripod with Bag CHECK LATEST PRICE Pros Very Affordable for Those on a Budget Very Versatile, Can Be Used While Sitting or Standing Rubber Feet Do An Excellent Job of Keeping the Tripod Stable Cons May Be Wobbly at First Not Ideal for Heavy Scopes No Lifetime Warranty, Only a One-Year Our first tripod up for review is the AmazonBasics 60-inch lightweight offering. This is one of the more affordable products on the market. This weighs 3.3 pounds, making it lightweight and easy to carry around. It has the ability to extend up to 60 inches. However, if you prefer sitting down or have a hunting bench, you can lower it down to about 24 inches. Either way, you get some pretty good versatility with a stand like this. This also comes with two built-in bubble view levels and a three-way head that you can use for easy movement and swiveling. If you’re on the go, the quick-release feature will definitely come in handy. Just attach, detach, and reattach in a matter of seconds. If you ha ​ ​ ppen to be on a budget or just need a something of a starter tripod, the AmazonBasics may be the product for you. Bottom Line Considering that this is the best overall, it is also one of the best products to start out with for your scope. For its price, it does a good job. If you're looking for an item that is versatile, affordable, and is great for most purposes, the AmazonBasics might be the right choice for you. Best Hunting Tripod For Spotting Scope: ​ Vortex Optics Pro GT CHECK LATEST PRICE Pros Handles Heavier Spotting Scopes The Legs and Overall Construction is Very Sturdy The Lifetime Warranty is a Good Sign You Will Have a Very Durable Product on Your Hands Cons Not as Lightweight, But Probably for Good Reason May Be Heavy for Other Purposes Like Backpacking. Some Have Complained About the Level Being Flimsy Due to its Plastic Construction The Hunters would benefit best from an item like this . But does it also go as far as their accessories? The short answer: yes. This tripod, in particular, can handle your heavy scopes. That's because it has a maximum load capacity of ten pounds. This is also a versatile scope that you can adjust to a sitting or standing position. It can extend to about 67 inches and go as low as 24 inches. This is excellent for most purposes. If you need a tripod for your scope that can even handle windy conditions, the Vortex is a great choice for that. The balance hook is used to hold it in place, even when nature decides to unleash a good old-fashioned wind gust. The Vortex is as tough and durable as it can get. If you want a spotting scope tripod that will last you a good while, then the Vortex might be your best option. Bottom Line Of course, Vortex once again proves itself to be one of the top-dog brands in all things scopes. Their scopes are insanely durable and apparently, so are their accessories. If you want a product that can withstand any conditions and be able to still stand on windy days, the Vortex will be your best hunting buddy. Best Table Top Tripod "For Spotting Scope" : ​ Vanguard VS-82 Table Top Tripod CHECK LATEST PRICE Pros Backed by a Two-Year Warranty. Compact and Easy to Store When Folded For a Table Top, it Actually Does Pretty Well With Heavy Scopes Cons No Quick Release Plate Rubber Feet May Not Lay All the Way Flat One User Wished the Legs Would Extend Out a Little Further Next up is a tried and true tabletop tripod for spotting scopes. The Vanguard VS-82 is a lightweight offering that weighs just under a pound. Because of this, it is easy to carry around. The Vanguard stands at about 9.8 inches, so it won't wobble on you like what some standing tripods would do. The legs fully extend and are further secured by non-slip feet. The two-way pan head gives you 360 degrees of movement, so your scope has the freedom to move in one direction or another. Maybe even in a complete circle. With the features that it has, the Vanguard is one of the more reliable tabletop models on the market. The maximum load is 5.5 pounds, which means you can load a good scope on here without having it fall in your lap. Bottom Line The Vanguard may be your tripod of choice if you just want one that is solely a table top. It is, for the most part, durable, and has a pretty good max load for its type. The 360-degree panning is pretty good, which can explain why there is no quick release plate that you would otherwise find on some of the other stands. However, if you want a good tabletop product and don't want one that extends to a standing height, get the Vanguard. Best For The Money: ​ Bushnell 784030 CHECK LATEST PRICE Pros Very Sturdy and Durable Versatile for Hunting Benches and for Standing Can Handle Heavy Scopes as it has a Maximum Load Capacity of 11 Pounds Cons No "Quick Release Plate" Available It’s Not the Most Lightweight, Again, No Surprise as it is Very Strong and Durable One Reviewer Complained About Lack of Level Indicator, so Leveling May Be Questionable Bushnell has long been a reliable brand for scopes. The reliability is pretty much the same with their accessories. The Bushnell 784030 is very durable and one of the most stable standing scope tripods on the market. Mind you, it is not a lightweight product. But it’s a pretty good explanation as to why it has the ability to stay in place once you place it. Plus, it’s going to last you a pretty long while. It can extend up to 61 inches and be brought down to about 18 inches. So whether it’s for a hunting bench or if you just want to stand the whole time, you have the versatility in this tripod. If you’re on a budget, this stand may be affordable if you have some breathing room. If you care more about quality and are also willing to spend a little extra, then the Bushnell may be your best choice. It will last you quite a long time so long as you use it properly. And since this is quite a durable product that can last you a long time, Bushnell stands by this with its lifetime warranty. So, should anything happen to it, you’ll get a replacement with no problems at all. It’s one of the many reasons why Bushnell is considered one of the better brands for their scopes and accessories. Bottom Line The Bushnell has proven itself to be one of a handful of brands that can be relied on. No, it may not be the most lightweight, but there’s always a good reason why. Sometimes, the not so good things come with the territory of good things. However, if you want a product that is designed to last for a long time and on a budget with a little bit of breathing room, the Bushnell tripod can be your best choice. Best Tripod For Birding: ​ Vanguard Alta Pro 263AB CHECK LATEST PRICE Pros Very Sturdy Construction Lightweight, But Very Solid The Extension and Folding Lengths Are Pretty Decent Cons May Be a Tad Difficult to Move Around When Filming a Moving Target Some Reviewers Have Had Issues With the Plastic Knobs Being Low Quality One Reviewer Said That the Folding Height Doesn’t Shrink Low Enough for Some Desks Once again, we go back to the Vanguard for a look at the best tripod for birding. The Vanguard Alta has a multi-angle central column (MACC) that will give you the ability to shift the central column from zero to 180 degrees in different angles, whether horizontal or vertical. You can also set the leg angles to 25, 50, and 80-degree angles. At a folded height, it stands at 28 inches while it can fully extend to 68 inches. It does have the ability to be a good tabletop tripod like the Vanguard we've reviewed beforehand, however, it also can extend for those who want to get an even better view standing up. The loading capacity of the Vanguard is an impressive 15.4 pounds. This means that it has the ability to withstand some heavy duty scopes. Bottom Line The Vanguard does a good job as a spotting scope tripod for birding, as it is lightweight, but strong. And the folding and extending lengths are pretty good for this type of product. If you want a good birding scope, the Vanguard may be the best option for you. Best Tactical Spotting Scope Tripod: ​ Celestron 82050 TrailSeeker Tripod CHECK LATEST PRICE Pros Legs Are Very Sturdy and Can Handle Any Terrain Leveling Bubble Included to Indicate How Level the Tripod Is The Shoulder Strap is Considered a Very Convenient Feature Cons Not for Scopes Heavier Than Seven Pounds "One Reviewer Complained" About the Head Design Being Terrible One Reviewer Complained About the Quick Release Plate Not Securing Very Well The Celestron is a light, portable tripod for your spotting scope that is perfect for most scopes below seven pounds. This is the perfect option if you’re outdoors or hiking. That’s because it is equipped with simple lever leg locks and the legs themselves can handle any terrain. The foam padding is perfect for easy carrying from one point to the next. Best of all, portability is a breeze with the equipped shoulder strap. The center column allows it to be raised up to approximately 71 inches and it can be folded down to around 19 inches. So you get a tripod that is good for sitting and standing. If you want a good standing scope for hiking trips, the Celestron may be a great choice for you. Bottom Line If you’re a hiker that loves to do some long-distance exploring with a spotting scope, you can never go wrong with a tripod like this. Given the fact that it is lightweight, it is not a surprise that it won’t handle heavy scopes. Besides, you don’t need a lot of weight to lug around while hiking, do you? That being said, the Celestron is a great one to have if you want to make your hike or nature walk a more enjoyable one. Best Heavy Duty Spotting Scope Tripod: ​ "Orion 5378 Paragon" HD-F2 "Heavy Duty Tripod" CHECK LATEST PRICE Pros Can Easily "Handle Heavy Scopes" Very Durable, Hence Why it is a Heavy-Duty Scope Spiked Feet Do a Good Job Holding the Tripod Steady in Any Terrain Cons Head Can Be a Little Wobbly at Times One Reviewer Complained About the Head Being a Little Stiff One Reviewer Complained About One of the Legs Not Being Secured Properly For the best in heavy-duty tripods, we look to the Orion Paragon. This item weighs about 7.5 pounds and is fully extendable up to 72 inches. For a quick and easy setup, the Orion comes equipped with aluminum-tubed legs that have lever locks and spiked feet to keep it in place. For quick attachment and detachment, it comes with a quick release plate that you can use without having any extra tools handy. Bottom Line The Orion Paragon is good to have if you know that you’re going to be treading on some rough grounds. The spiked feet are quite helpful when you want to plant it into the ground so it stays stable. It will have no problem holding heavy scopes. It’s even better for taller individuals that want to look through the scope without ever having to hunch over. Best Tripod For Shooting: ​ "Vortex Optics Summit" CHECK LATEST PRICE Pros Backed by a Lifetime Warranty Great for Not Just Shooting, but Also for Hiking Lowest Folding Height Ranges From 15 to 18 inches. So it’s Perfect for a Bench or Desk Cons One Reviewer Had Some Issues Wth the Head Being a Little Wobbly One Reviewer Complained That it’s Not as Rugged as it’s Supposed to Be One Reviewer Complained About the Legs Being a Little Stiff at First, Requiring Lubrication For our last scope, we will finish it off with the Vortex. At this point, you already know that this ​ ​ brand is a very trustworthy one . And it’s for all the right reasons. If you want a product that will stand still in windy conditions, this will be your best option. That’s because it’s equipped with a balance hook that helps the tripod stay centered and in place. When out target practicing, you may already be having wind issues to begin with (affecting he direction of your shot). Considering the fact that it is lightweight, it is surprisingly strong and durable. Also included is a carrying case for easy transportation, a quick-release plate so you can quickly attach and detach, and a three-way pan head for maximum swiveling and movement. Bottom Line Like with all Vortex products, it’s backed by a lifetime warranty. And that should come as no surprise since most of their products are built to last. If you want a tripod that can withstand the wind and the rough terrain, the Vortex Summit could be the best tripod option for you. Conclusion Finding the right spotting scope tripod doesn’t have to be hard. Before making a decision, you should consider the factors mentioned in this article, plus some of your personal preferences. You can have a lot of fun using your scope when you find the right product that fits you and your scope perfectly.

The Best Magazines for the Mini 14 Rifle

The Best Magazines for the Mini 14 Rifle

The Mini 14 stands among the most loved and widely used rifles in America. It is obviously the most popular .223 semi-automatic rifle and combines the features of many other sought-after rifles. The market is flooded with options for upgrading the standard Mini 14 magazines, which leaves people confused about it. Today we’ll learn about whether to use those aftermarket mags or stick with the original ones. We’ll also take a look at some of the best mini 14 magazines available on the market. At a Glance: Our Top Picks for Mini 14 Magazines OUR TOP PICK: Ruger Magazine: Mini-14 223 Reminton/5.56 Nato 5rd Capacity - 90009 BEST BUDGET OPTION: Tapco Weapons Accessories - Ruger Mini-14 30rd Magazine 223/5.56 Ruger Magazine MINI-14 223 10 Round 90339 Magazine Pro Mag Ruger Mini-14 .223 Rifle Magazine Ruger Mini 14 Magazine 90583 Magazine Capacity: 5 Comparison of the Best Mini 14 Magazines IMAGE PRODUCT Our Top Pick Ruger Magazine: Mini-14 223 Reminton/5.56 Nato 5rd Capacity - 90009 Military-Style Blued Steel Construction Has Been Field Tested by Police Ruger Factory Components Offer Great Reliability at an Affordable Price Five-Round Capacity is Great for Saving Weight or Following Legal Restrictions View Latest PriceRead Customer Reviews Best Budget Option "Tapco Weapons Accessories" - Ruger Mini-14 30rd Magazine 223/5.56 Popular with Law Enforcement Units Worldwide Offers a Good Balance Between Lightness and Firepower Comes with Ruger's Renowned Reputation for Rugged Reliability "View Latest Price" → "Read Customer Reviews" Ruger Magazine MINI-14 223 10 "Round 90339 Magazine" Great price point 10-round capacity Oil and water-resistant View Latest PriceRead Customer Reviews Pro "Mag Ruger Mini" -14 . "223 Rifle Magazine" Made in the U.S.A. and Warrantied Against Defects Available in Blued or Nickel-Plated Steel to Match Your Gun Ten-Round Capacity is a Great Compromise Between Weight and Firepower View Latest PriceRead Customer Reviews Ruger Mini 14 Magazine "90583 Magazine Capacity" : 5 Mil-Spec Blued Steel Design Has Been Tested By Police Worldwide Factory Components From Ruger Give You Reliability You Can Afford Five-Round Capacity is Perfect for Cutting Weight or Following Strict Laws View Latest PriceRead Customer Reviews 3-pk. Of Thermold 30-rd. Mini 14 Mags Fits perfectly well with the Mini 14 Steel Construction Features a tempered-steel spring which gives reliable feeding and durability to the structure View Latest PriceRead Customer Reviews Promag Ruger Mini-14 Blued Magazine, .223 Remington/5.56 Nato, 20 Rounds 20-round capacity Made in the USA Blued, clean finish View Latest Price Read Customer Reviews Ruger - Ruger Mini-30 Magazine 7.62x39 20-round capacity Solid steel construction Compact and lightweight design View Latest PriceRead Customer Reviews Ruger 90332 Mini-14 6.8mm Remington SPC 5 Rd Military Specification Blued Steel Body is Proven by Law Enforcement Use Original Magazines from Ruger Provide You With Reliability at a Decent Cost Five-Round Capacity is Well-Suited to Reducing Weight or Adhering to Stringent Laws View Latest Price → Read Customer Reviews What to Look for in an Aftermarket Magazine There’s quite a few things to keep in mind when considering an aftermarket magazine. A magazine is responsible for feeding the bullets into your action. If it’s not reliable, your feed system will jam every now and then. Not a good sight anytime. Before choosing an aftermarket magazine, you must ensure that it is reliable and feeds well. Check the spring, which shouldn’t be too tight or too loose. Also check to see if the magazine has a ‘hold-open’ follower (this can be done manually using the switch, but if it’s built in, so much the better). Another important aspect to consider is the size. There are 5, 10, 20 and 30 round magazines for the Mini 14. There’s even some larger ones. Think carefully about what size you really need. Sometimes it can just be a preference of how much it bothers you to switch clips. 3-Pk. of Thermold 30 round. Mini 14 Mags The weight and the material of the magazine also matter. That’s because a heavier magazine will add to the weight of the rifle. That in turn might affect accuracy. It is also not a good option if you have to walk a good distance with your rifle. Most of the magazines today are manufactured with polymer or metal. The polymer lightens these mags and eliminates the problem of rusting. However, the metal mags are still more durable and long lasting. One last factor that might not be a huge deal but is a nice feature, and that’s transparency. There are magazines where you can check out the number of rounds left without detaching them. This will be a bonus feature. Benefits of Having Spare Magazines Purchasing a spare magazine is an optional investment, and thus, is easily glossed over by many would-be buyers. However, there are some distinct advantages to having spare magazines, including: Improved Performance ​ Many of the magazines on our list, such as the Tapco Mini 14 30rd , improve performance with not only small details, such as improved grip when changing the magazine, but also polymer, non-tilt followers which reduce the risk of jamming. Whether the improvements are minor quality-of-life improvements or to ensure proper function of your gun when you need it most, having a spare magazine is one of the easiest and most affordable things you can do to increase performance. Security ​ Let’s say something happens to your red dot scope. You still have iron sights. What happens if something goes wrong with your magazine? If you don’t have a spare magazine, you’re out of luck. That simply won’t do, so all other advantages notwithstanding, ensure that you have a spare magazine for the same reason you have a spare tire on the back of your truck. Source Improved Longevity of Other Parts Your weapon is like your body: treat one part badly, and it affects everything. By switching your magazines to higher quality parts, you’ll put less stress on surrounding components. With features such as the self-lubricating polycarbonate in the Pro-Mag Ruger Mini-14 Magazine , you can ensure a slick operation that’ll put less wear on your weapon. They’re Inexpensive ​ While each spare magazine has a different price point, they’re relatively inexpensive compared to other components. Additionally, classics such as the Ruger Mini-30 Magazine 7.62x39 provide renowned quality at a very reasonable price, so you don’t have to buy budget brands—just consult our reviews and get great performance and value! Don’t make the common mistake of assuming spare magazines are unnecessary. They can improve performance, extend the life of your weapon, and are absolutely critical should something happen to your existing magazine. All of this, and they can be an exceptional value—so consult our list for the best spare magazine for you and give yourself some peace of mind. Quick Take - The Best Mini 14 Magazines These are our recommendations for the best magazines for the Mini 14: Ruger Magazine: Mini-14 223 Reminton/5.56 Nato 5rd Capacity - 90009 Tapco Weapons Accessories - Ruger Mini-14 30rd Magazine 223/5.56 Ruger Magazine MINI-14 223 10 Round 90339 Magazine Best Magazines for the Mini 14 The following is the best magazine that you can find for a Mini 14. Be sure to take a look at any features and characteristics that tend to stand out for you. Let’s take a look at the magazine that’s our main focus right now: Now that we’ve talked about what to look for, let’s see how a few different magazines stack up. Best Overall: KCI Ruger Mini-14 100rd Magazine CHECK LATEST PRICE Pros Super durable construction Loads fast with a speedloader Easy to install on a Mini 14 rifle Light in weight, even when loaded Excellent for target shooting and competitive shooting Cons None What Recent Buyers Report This magazine was a hit with a handful of new buyers. Especially those who are looking for a large capacity magazine that will get them through the long days at the range (both in a casual and competitive setting). They said that the feeding was smooth and the reliability was top notch. One user said that the magazine never jammed on him through well over 1000 rounds. Why it Stands Out to Us This magazine is a beast. And it’s super durable as well since it’s made from polymer. It can contain up to 100 rounds of Mini 14 ammo so you can be ready to take your shot if and when you need to. Sure, 100 rounds might seem like a lot. But who says that you can’t have too many shots to fire off? Who Will Use This Most This will be a great magazine for any Mini 14 owner who would rather be at the range all day than anywhere else. And who is to say that we blame you. If you have plenty of Mini 14 rounds at your disposal, then this could be the magazine that will be great for all of your shooting purposes. Start the day off at the range and end with hundreds of rounds fired off at your endless supply of paper targets. Bottom Line The Ruger Mini-14 100-round drum magazine is undoubtedly one of the toughest, most solidly built magazines that you can find anywhere on the market. And it will work great in any target shooting situation you find yourself in. Whether you are firing off rounds for fun or if you are in the middle of a competition, this magazine will be a fun thing to use when you have more than enough rounds to work with. Runner-up: ​ Ruger Magazine: Mini-14 223 Reminton/5.56 Nato 5rd Capacity - 90009 CHECK LATEST PRICE Pros Durable Stainless Steel Body Lined Grooves For Better Grip Hole On the Side For Ammo Visibility Doesn’t Stick Out Much From the Weapon Metal Feed Lips To Prevent Feeding Issues Easy To Remove Base Plate For Maintenance Blued Finish For Wear Resistance and Aesthetics Ruger-Original Products Offer Excellent Reliability at a Great Price These Mags Have Been Field-Tested By Various Police and Military Units If You Want to Save Weight or Must Follow State Capacity Regs, this 5-Round Mag is for You Cons Low Capacity, Not Very Good For Tactical Use Has To Be Reloaded Quite Often In Rigorous Shooting Sessions A Bit Heavy Compared To Polymer Mags (But more durable as well) Capacity Not Suitable For Situations Requiring High Firepower "What Recent Buyers" Report Most recent buyers tend to like this magazine, given the fact it is made from steel and highly durable. The magazine fits flush inside the weapon, and since these are made by Ruger themselves, they function properly. Why it Stands Out to Us First of all, these magazines are made by Ruger. Plus, the magazine has been made from blued steel which ensures its durability. Since the feed lips are metal, there is almost no possibility of feeding issues from there. Sturm, Ruger & Co. was founded in 1949 by the legendary Bill Ruger. Currently, the nation's largest firearm's manufacturer, Ruger, is known for rock-solid reliability that the average Joe can afford. You can enjoy a little extra peace of mind buying Ruger's own after-market components given the company's reputation and the fact that components such as this mag, are designed and built in the same place as your gun. If you need a light, practical hunting mag for your Mini-14 or must abide by some new draconian magazine size laws, this mag is perfect for you. This detachable five-round box magazine is made of super-reliable blued steel and closely resembles a mil-spec mag. In fact, factory original Ruger mags like these have been used by about a dozen police forces around the world and by the Royal Bermuda Regiment. From a military perspective, the capacity of such a magazine is mainly useful for practice purposes, but that still says a lot. For most civilian applications, five rounds are more than enough. Even if you are just plinking or shooting paper at the range, for consistent accuracy, it is good to give your barrel a break to cool down. Who Will "Use This Most" These mags are more likely to be used by bench shooters, competitive shooters, and hunters. Additionally, people with magazine capacity restrictions can also use these as an alternative to high capacity mags. The magazine is ideal for a hunter who shoots at a slow pace and has ample time for reloading. Bottom Line These are Ruger manufactured factory mags which function flawlessly with the mini-14. The mags are steel so you can drop them, throw them and abuse them the way you like. Additionally, the mags are easy to clean and will last for years to come. This is a great low-capacity mag for normal civilian conditions. The best features are the solid blued steel construction and the product’s reliability. Best for the Money: Tapco Weapons Accessories - Ruger Mini-14 30rd Magazine 223/5.56 CHECK LATEST PRICE Pros Anti-tilt Follower Prevents Feeding Issue. Good For Tactical Uses and Home Defense 30 Round Capacity For Longer Shooting Time Lightweight and Durable Polymer Construction Grooved and Textured Floorplate For Easy Drawing Match Horizontal Grooves On the Body "For Better Grip" Relatively Low Price Lightweight With Grooves For Better Grip Cons Restricted Use in Some States Wider Base May Create Limitations With Carry Space User May Face Problems With Quick Fitting Polymer Construction Won’t Last Long Compared To the Metal Ones What Recent Buyers Report The magazine features smooth operation both in and out of the receiver. These mags seem very sturdy and reliable. Most customers buy multiple of these magazines pertaining to their price, capacity and flawless operation. The mags fit very snug into the rifle and are easy to insert and remove. Why it Stands Out to Us The magazine is quite well built and holds 30 rounds at once. Plus the inexpensive price of the mags allows you to purchase multiple units at a time. These are easy to disassemble, and lightweight to be carried around. Plus, the texture of these mags is also quite supportive. Tapco offers this 30-round full polymer body magazine for the Mini 14. It is a single-piece construction made from a fiberglass polymer composite which makes it somewhat durable and lightweight. The evenly-spaced grooves on the exterior provide a firm grip for easy changing of the mag. It also features a polymer, non-tilt follower which reduces the risk of jamming while you shoot. It also has a chrome-silicon spring. The floorplate lock tab is connected with the spring and can be removed by pressing with a bullet’s tip for easy cleaning. Who Will Use This Most This magazine will be best used for training and tactical purposes. Due to its high capacity, the magazine allows you to shoot more rounds with a single fill. Which can be handy in tactical/home-defense situations or at the range. However, please make sure that your local laws allow the use of such high capacity magazines. Bottom Line The Tapco 30 round magazines fit the mini-14 very well and operate flawlessly under every condition. The magazines are made from polymer, which makes them lightweight. Plus the high capacity prevents you from the hassle of quick reloading. 4. Ruger Magazine MINI-14 223 10 Round 90339 Magazine CHECK LATEST PRICE Pros Oil and Water Resistant Surface Tough Body Crafted From Blued Steel ​ Large Enough To Be Handled With Ease Original Factory-Made Ruger Magazines Retro Chocolate Bar Grooves For Good Grip 10 Round Capacity, Max For Restricted States Ruger Factory Products Are Known For Rugged Reliability Used With Confidence "Law Enforcement Units" Around the World Ten Rounds is a "Great Compromise Between" Firepower and Lightness Cons A Bit Heavy A Bit Pricey Compared To Polymer Mags Does Not Close On a Closed Bolt What Recent Buyers Report Since these mags are made from blued stainless steel, they are extremely durable. Most users don’t face any feeding issues and fit perfectly inside the mini-14. Additionally, most users appreciate the mag being originally made by Ruger. Why it Stands Out to Us This magazine is OEM by Ruger, so there are no performance or compatibility issues. Plus, the oil and water resistant surface prolongs their service life. The magazine has metal feed lips, which won’t bend no matter how much you drop or stomp it. A ten-round magazine is a good compromise between firepower and lightness. As with the five-round model above, using a mag or any component designed and manufactured by the same company that made your rifle offers a bit of confidence and peace of mind. Unlike with the five-round model, even the base-plate of this magazine is made of blued steel. This more complete steel construction gives the unit a real classic military look. The follower appears to be of a good, nylon anti-tilt variety. Although Ruger explicitly designed these mags to only seat in the mag well when the bolt is open, many users have a hard time getting used to this design feature. It is a fairly common feature, and most can get used to it with a bit of practice. Given that it is only ten rounds, this mag does not require curved internal geometry. Instead, the style ​goes back to some of the original military detachable box magazines like those on the M14, upon which the design of the Mini-14 is based. These mags can be hard to find because they are much more robustly made than those by other after-market manufacturers. Who Will Use This Most The magazine is a boon for people residing in states restricting the use of high capacity mags. 10 rounds is the max. you can have there. This magazine is ideal for hunters and target shooters. Given the fact that 10 rounds are enough for a hunting expedition. Plus, the mag is quite durable to be used at the range. Bottom Line The 10 round Ruger magazine is a must have for mini-14 owners living in capacity restrictive states. The magazine is quite durable and will last a lifetime if used properly. The price may seem a bit off when compared to polymer mags, but it is definitely worth it. Ten is a good round number to carry around in a mag. Maybe heavy and unnecessary for a long day's slog of mountainous hunting, but for plinking, a day at the range, or boar hunting, ten is the Goldilocks mag capacity. Of course, it comes with Ruger reliability. 5. ProMag Ruger Mini-14 .223 Rifle Magazine CHECK LATEST PRICE Pros 10 Round Capacity Aesthetically Pleasing Design Easy To Disassemble and Clean Sturdy and Well Made Magazine Blued Stainless Steel Magazine For Durability Very Affordable Price Compared With Factory Mags Comes in Blued or Nickel-Plated Steel To Match the Finish of Your M-14 Manufactured In the U.S.A. and Guaranteed To Have No Factory Defects A Ten-Round Mag is a Perfect Balance Between Weight-Saving and Firepower Cons Followers Are Not Polished Not As Reliable As Factory Mags A "Bit Pricey Compared" To Polymer Mags May Not Be As Reliable as Ruger Mags What Recent Buyers Report Most users choose this magazine because of the similarity in design and difference in price compared with the Ruger factory mags. These magazines are quite durable, and look pleasing. However, some users report some jamming issues but, that’s not very common. Why it Stands Out to Us The differentiating factor for these magazines is their affordable price. These mags are almost half in price compared to OEM ones. Plus they are almost on par when it comes to performance. Another important aspect to mention is their aesthetics. For which there are a couple of colors to choose from. ProMag is a high-quality firearm components manufacturer based in Phoenix. This is another great ten-round mag with a classic military design and a heat-treated steel body. This mag comes in two finishes, blued steel or nickel-plated steel. Obviously, the blued version will look better on a gun with blued steel and the nickel-plated option will best match a stainless steel gun. Again, the ten-round capacity of this magazine offers a great compromise between weight and firepower. This model offers very similar aesthetics and functionality to the ten-round Ruger factory model above but at about half the price. Internally, this mag features a chrome-silicon spring to prevent corrosion and a precision-molded polymer feeder. ProMag products are made in the U.S.A. and warrantied against factory defects. This is the perfect choice if you are looking for a moderate capacity with a military aesthetic at a great price. This is especially true if you want the nickel-plated version to match your stainless steel gun. Who Will Use This Most These magazines are best to be used as extras while shooting at the range. One can also decide to use them for hunting, but that totally depends upon the discretion of the user. Not to mention that people living in restrictive law states can also get their hands upon these mags. Bottom Line The ProMag .223 10 round magazine is an inexpensive alternative for the Ruger Mini-14 factory magazines. This magazine is durable, aesthetically pleasing and can be used in multiples at the range, considering their price and capacity. This is a great cost-saving option, especially if you treat magazines as disposable items. The choice of aesthetic is nice, especially if that's your thing. You may want to find a way to polish the follower to increase reliability. It can be nice having some affordable mags or other components that you don't care too much about if they get lost or damaged. If that's what you're looking for, this mag is for you. 6. Ruger Mini 14 Magazine 90583 Magazine Capacity: 5 CHECK LATEST PRICE Pros Designed For the .300 BLK Caliber Good For Hunting and Restrictive Laws Doesn’t Add Much Weight To the Weapon Ruger Factory Magazine Ensures Reliability Caliber Printed Over the Magazine To Avoid Confusion Products "From Ruger Give" You Outstanding Reliability at an Affordable Price These "Mags Have Been" Proven in the Field By Dozens of Police and Military Units If You Need to Save Weight or Adhere To Tight State Capacity Laws, This Magazine is Ideal Cons Limited Capacity To Be Versatile Might Be Difficult To Handle For People With Large Hands Lacks a Large Enough Capacity For Situations Calling For High Firepower What Recent Buyers Report The magazine displays competent crafting and a durable design. It holds 5 rounds and works flawlessly with the mini-14. It can be split apart easily for cleaning and maintenance. Plus, the chocolate bar grooves over the body help with getting a better grip. Why it Stands Out to Us The magazine has been meticulously designed with no flaws whatsoever. The steel spring is strong and facilitates flawless feeding. Plus, the caliber engraved on the right side helps with storage, assortment, and looks aesthetically pleasing. Additionally, this is an original factory mag manufactured by Ruger. If your Mini-14 is chambered in the popular 300 Blackout round and you need a light five-round mag for long days of packing your rifle around the bush, or if your state has strict capacity laws, this magazine is a great choice. Again, Ruger has a reputation for dependability that you can afford. You will be able to rest easy purchasing Ruger's own in-house mags thanks to the company's reputation and the knowledge that components such as this one are designed and made alongside your M-14. If you need a light, efficient hunting mag for your 300 Blackout Mini-14 or if your options are restricted by local magazine capacity laws, this mag is perfect for you. This detachable five-round box magazine is constructed of heavy-duty blued steel and looks a lot like a standard mil-spec mag. For most civilian use cases, five rounds are more than adequate. Even if you are just plinking or spending a day at the range, for consistent shot placement, best practice is to give your barrel time to cool down. Reloading your mag every five shots is a reasonable way to do this. Who Will Use This Most The magazine is best for hunters and range use. It has a limited capacity of 5 rounds which is enough for a skilled shooter to take down game. Plus, the 5 round capacity allows your rifle time to cool down while shooting at the range. Bottom Line "The Ruger Mini" -14 .300BLK magazine is an OEM component for your rifle. It is sturdy and has been quite well designed to ensure flawless operation. The magazine is ideal for hunting and as a backup for carrying some extra ammo in a small confined space. This is an excellent low-capacity mag for average civilian use cases. Its top features are the tough blued steel design and its reliability. ​ 7. 3-pk. of Thermold 30-rd. Mini 14 Mags CHECK LATEST PRICE Pros Best Value For Money Damage Resistant Self Lubricating Finish 30 Round Capacity With Double Stack Design Made From Nylon To Resist Natural Eroding Factors Lightweight, Durable and Expendable Polymer Magazines Cons Legal Restrictions in Some States Might Take Some Time To Break-In Won’t Last As Long As Steel Magazines What Recent Buyers Report Most users seem quite impressed about the value for money this combo offers. The 30 round capacity is also something that pleases them. However, some users report about the time these mags take to break in and their lower quality compared to the Ruger factory mags. Although, they seem content with the price. Why it Stands Out to Us The first thing that stands out is the value for money. Three 30 round magazines at the price less than that of a Ruger metal magazine is something worth considering. Plus, the magazines have a self lubricating finish to prevent scratches. Additionally, nylon itself is resistant to heat, moisture and rust. Who Will Use This Most These magazines are most likely to be used for practice, plinking, and home defense. Since their high capacity makes them somewhat ineffective for hunting. These mags are a good choice for home defense, since you will find enough ammo to fight off the hostiles due to the 30 round capacity. Bottom Line These magazines are surely the best-value-for-money combo you can get for your Mini-14. The mags have a self lubricating finish and are made from nylon to be lightweight and durable. Unarguably a good choice for the range and home defense. ​ 8. "Promag Ruger Mini" -14 Blued Magazine, .223 Remington/5.56 Nato, 20 Rounds CHECK LATEST PRICE Pros Durable "Blued Steel Body" Fits Tightly and Feeds Very Well ​ "Metal Feed Lips" and Strong Spring 20 Round Capacity To Pack Quite a Few Rounds Apt Pricing, Compared With Similar Factory Mags Inexpensive price Stainless Steel Outer Body With Removable Base Plate Cons Sharp Edges Should Be Taken Care of Might Require Filing (In extremely rare cases) Spring Might Feel Tight When Nearing the Full Capacity Polycarbonate Follower Which May Degrade With Time What Recent Buyers Report The magazine is exceptionally well built and durable, and are mostly liked by users because they prove to be a worthy and comparatively inexpensive option for the Ruger factory mags. The magazines function very well and are almost flawless. There didn’t seem to be any considerable negative reviews for this magazine related to quality or function. Why it Stands Out to Us It is a blued steel magazine which can readily replace the factory magazine at half the price. Plus the 20 round capacity is a good value for the magazine to be used for almost every purpose. The magazine functions perfectly and being double stacked doesn’t take up much space. Additionally, this mag is widely trusted and used across the Mini-14 community. Pro-Mag is probably the most loved and trusted brand for purchasing Mini-14 Mags and other upgrades. No doubt, there’s a solid reason for their reputation for magazines. These magazines have a TIG welded carbon steel body, similar to the OEM version. They feature a self-lubricating polycarbonate follower and a heat-treated chrome silicon spring which improve the feeding process. The magazine has a black finish and comes in 20 and 30 round variants with a minor difference in prices. It also features a removable base plate for easy disassembly and cleaning. Who Will Use This Most As already mentioned, the magazine can be used for almost every purpose associated with the Mini-14. It can be used for hunting, range shooting/practice, and even home defense. The steel body protects it from getting damaged under pressure, so it is good to be thrown around the range. Bottom Line This stainless steel magazine from promag is the perfect replacement for Ruger factory magazines. It is quite well built and can hold 20 rounds, which gives you ample firepower to tackle any problematic situation. Additionally, very few high quality magazines can beat it for the price. 9. John Masen 10rd Magazine CHECK LATEST PRICE Pros Aesthetically Pleasing Color Variants Black Polymer Shock Absorbing Base Heavy Duty Spring For Reliable Feeding Feeds the Last Round Properly Into the Chamber Shock-absorbing Bottom Improves Longevity Cons Follower May Need To Be Replaced Priced High Compared To Similar Mags Not a Very Thick Gauge; it Bends Easily What Recent Buyers Report Buyers praise the last round bolt hold open capability of this magazine, as well as its aesthetics. The fit, finish and durability also pleases most users.However, some users also talk about some feeding issues, which are quite rate. These mags are seen as a good replacement or backup for the factory Ruger mags. Why it Stands Out to Us The last round feeding efficiency of this magazine is worth noticing. Plus, the durable finish and fitting inside the mini-14 is quite good. Another factor, is the finish of this magazine, which can withstand a lot of abuse before succumbing. Plus, the heavy duty spring also ensures that the magazine loads a round after every cycle. There is a notable effort from John Masen to imitate the Ruger factory magazines. Manufactured from stainless steel, these magazines can hold 10 rounds and are available in black or nickel finish variants. The stainless construction provides corrosion resistance and durability. It features a black polymer follower and a shock-absorbing bottom pad. Who Will Use This Most Since it is a 10 round magazine, it is more likely to be used by hunters and competitive shooters. The magazine is made of steel and is quite durable, which also makes it useful for shooting range sessions. It can withstand rugged operation and can help you to train a bit with your weapon for emergency situations. Bottom Line The John Masen 10 round Mini-14 magazines are a reliable alternative to the factory mags. Plus, they can be kept as backup magazines for hunting or range sessions. These are just a nick cheaper than the factory magazines, so eventually it's your own discretion. 10. Ruger Mini-30 Magazine 7.62x39 CHECK LATEST PRICE Pros Durable Steel Construction Original Ruger Mags For the Mini-30 Ammo Monitoring Holes On the Sides Curved Design For Better Grip and Handling Reliable Feeding of Both Brass and Steel Ammo Compact and Lightweight Body, Even Being Metal Cons Takes Up Storage Space Due To Curved Body Requires Timely Maintenance For Proper Functioning Occasional Issues With it Not Loading as Smoothly as 20-Round Versions "Recent Buyers Report" Report According to recent customer reviews, these mini-30 magazines work flawlessly with all kinds of 7.62x39 ammunition. It is more compact and lightweight than any other 20 round steel magazine in its category. It is easy to use while changing and works reliably with the gun, with almost no feeding issues whatsoever. Why it Stands Out to Us This is a Ruger made magazine, which adds to its credibility. Plus, the magazine pulls out easily when needed. The sides have a couple of holes to let you keep track of the ammunition. Additionally, the curved design makes it easy to grip, and the compact design makes maneuvering the rifle easy. In many cases, third parties have to improve on the original manufacturer's design. In Ruger's case that's rather rare; they usually get it right and aren't outdone by others. The same can be said for their magazines. This Mini-30 mag holds 30 rounds and works quite well. There are occasional issues with it not working quite as smoothly as the 20-round versions. However, on the whole this is another quality accessory from the masters themselves. Who Will → Read Customer The rifle is best for hunters. Especially vermin hunting, for game like hogs and coyotes. The magazine’s flawless feeding allows you to make quick shots over a moving target. Plus the 20 round capacity packs in enough ammo to prevent you from halting for a refill. Additionally, it is also a good option for competitive and range shooters. Bottom Line These Ruger mini-30 magazines are compact, lightweight and reliable enough to be trusted with your life in a critical situation. Plus the steel body is sturdy enough to withstand a lot of abuse. The ammo-check holes are also of some help. Overall, the magazine is a great fit for the mini-30. 11. "Ruger 90332 Mini" -14 6.8mm Remington SPC 5 Rd CHECK LATEST PRICE Pros Vertical Grooves For Better Grip Ammo-Check Hole On the Side Durable Construction Using Blued Steel The Best 6.8 SPC Magazine For Mini-14 Edged Polymer Follower For Last Round Chambering Reliability Aesthetically Pleasing Finish and Stamped With Ruger Logo On the Bottom The Best 6.8 SPC Magazine For Mini-14 Accessories From Ruger Provide Top-Notch Reliability at a Fair Price These Mags Have Been Field-Proven On Deployment By Dozens of LE and Military Units If You Want To Save Weight or Need To Abide By Stringent State Mag Capacity Laws, This is a Great Choice Cons Low Capacity Magazine Does Not Have Enough Capacity For Use in Cases "Requiring High Firepower" Recent Buyers Report Report According to user consensus, the magazine may take some time to break-in. However, it functions flawlessly after getting used to the rifle. The magazines have a strong spring which ensures that the rounds properly feed into the receiver. The finish of the magazine is splendid and protects it from any sort of wear and tear for years to come. Why it Stands Out to Us The magazine is fairly reliable for the 6.8 SPC rounds and fits very well to the mini-14. Obviously because of the fact that it has been manufactured by Ruger. The magazine has a flawless anti-tilt follower which is edged on the rear to ensure the last round is chambered properly. If your Mini-14 is chambered in the estimable 6.8 SPC caliber and you require a lightweight five-round magazine for long slogs packing your rifle through the woods, or if your hunting grounds fall under stringent magazine capacity laws, this mag is the perfect option. Once again, Ruger is known for dependability without a hefty price tag. You will sleep easy pulling the trigger on Ruger's own factory mags, thanks to the company's solid reputation and the knowledge that after-market parts and accessories, such as this one are engineered and manufactured right there with your M-14. If you need a lightweight, handy hunting mag for your 6.5 SPC Mini-14 or if you are restricted by state magazine capacity rules, this mag is for you. This detachable five-round box magazine is built of the toughest blued steel, and the aesthetics are a lot like a standard mil-spec mag. For most civilian situations, five rounds are plenty. Even if you are just plinking or passing a day at the range, for consistent accuracy, the best thing is to let your barrel have some time to cool down. Reloading your magazine every five shots or so is a pretty good way to do this. Who Will "→ Read Customer" Anybody using a 6.8 SPC mini-14 can use this magazine. However, it is not good for tactical or defense purposes. It is an exceptional magazine for hunting and target practice. Plus the 5 round capacity allows ample time for your barrel to cool off while you reload. Bottom Line A mini-14 in 6.8mm SPC is quite a rare sight, but it is still an effective hunting and sniping cartridge. This 5 round magazine will turn out to be best for hunters and range shooting. This is a fantastic low-capacity magazine for everyday civilian uses. Its best features are the rugged blued steel design and the reliability. Cautious Considerations To Keep in Mind If you want to be more informed about purchasing magazines for your Ruger Mini 14, then you need to be aware of some considerations that should not be ignored. Here’s what you need to know: Double Check Your Laws Regarding Magazine Size Depending on where you live, there may be laws or regulations in regards to magazine size. So it would be important to double-check your local and state laws to ensure that you do not run into any inadvertent legal headaches at some point down the road. From there, you can decide which magazine will be compliant with those laws if push came to shove. Make Absolutely Sure Your Rifle Is Compatible If you think every Mini 14 magazine can fit Mini 14 rifles, then you might be in for a rude awakening. If you haven’t found this out yet, then the guesswork may be a bit harder. But in order to save you time and money, you’ll need to know the measurements of your rifle’s magwell so you can find a magazine that has the right measurements to fit. Conclusion There are quite a few good aftermarket options for changing your Mini 14 magazines. The original Ruger factory mags are no doubt the best choice for the Mini 14, but they are quite rare and overpriced compared to the other options. Lighter and more inexpensive models of magazines are easily available and can be used without any problems. But it all depends upon your individual discretion.

How to Build an AR-15 Lower Receiver: Hammer

How to Build an AR-15 Lower Receiver: Hammer

At this point in our AR-15 lower receiver build, we’ve finished putting together the magazine catch , trigger guard , bolt catch , pivot pin , and trigger , and now we’re ready to install the hammer . I have two references for you to check out, if you like, that go along with this article. First is a list of the tools and parts I’m using for this build, and the second is a video reference (the time stamp below will match up with the part of the video where the hammer installation begins). (13:10) Step 6 – Hammer To begin, you will need the hammer, hammer spring, hammer retaining pin and the 5/32″ punch again. Pay special attention to make sure that the legs of the hammer spring go over and under as seen in this zoomed view. If you get it backwards, you will have dangerous malfunctions. Drop your hammer into place, with each leg of the hammer spring placed into the notches of the trigger retaining pin. You should feel quite a bit of tension as you press downward to line up the holes on the hammer with the holes in the receiver. If you do not, double check to make sure your hammer spring is installed correctly. While maintaining downward pressure on the hammer, slide the 5/32″ roll pin through the receiver and hammer just like you did previously with the trigger. Again, this will keep everything in place and lined up while you install the hammer retaining pin. This pin will be a little more difficult to install than the trigger retaining pin because it is held in place by the hammer, which is under a lot of spring tension. You may have to use a small brass hammer to tap it into place while trying to keep everything lined up with the roll pin. Notice how the legs of the hammer spring rest on top of the trigger pin, thus holding the trigger pin in place so it does not walk out during firing of the rifle. Once you have the hammer retaining pin properly installed with both sides of the pin flush with the receiver, you can perform a function check. Again, do not let the hammer fall against the bolt release. Try to keep a hand in front of the bolt release to avoid it getting hit during this function check. Push the hammer down until the disconnector catches it. It should remain cocked until you pull the trigger. Once you pull the trigger, the hammer should fall into your hand, but keep tension on the trigger. While you are still pulling on the trigger, cock the hammer again and then release the trigger. The hammer sear should catch the trigger and the hammer should not fall. Go ahead and leave the hammer cocked back because you will need it in that position for the next step: installing the safety selector and pistol grip .

The Art of Engraved & Custom Guns

The Art of Engraved & Custom Guns

/* custom css */.td_uid_2_5f379d3a6dd47_rand.td-a-rec-img { text-align: left; } .td_uid_2_5f379d3a6dd47_rand.td-a-rec-img img { margin: 0 auto 0 0; } As investors flock to collectible guns as safe havens in these unstable economic times, we take a look at examples of some of the finer engraved and embellished guns. A factory Ruger No. 1 chambered for the 300 H&H cartridge was the raw material provided to Gary Goudy. He fitted the Kepplinger trigger to the rifle and did all the metal polishing. Photo by Gary Bolster Goudy then crafted the stock from a superb stick of English walnut, finished off by one of his trademark exquisite checkering jobs. The pattern he used is reminiscent of patterns used on high-grade Winchester guns in the past. All Photos by Gary Bolster Herman Waldron started with a small ring VZ-33 Mauser action for this rifle. He did all the metalsmithing chores necessary to convert the military action to a wonderful sporting rifle, including stippling the bolt knob. He fitted the barrel and chambered it for the 25-06 cartridge. Fisher/Blackburn rounded bottom metal was used for the rifle as well. Gary Goudy fashioned the lovely custom stock from a nice stick of California English walnut, and executed one of his renowned checkering patterns on it. This rifle is ready for the field. This Remington Model 700 Left Hand rifle came from the shop of the Williams Gun Sight Company. The detail photos show various examples of the work. The factory action was “blueprinted” and the barrel-mounted recoil lug removed. A new recoil lug was pinned and soldered in place. New England Custom Gun sights and EAW scope mounts were installed. The custom Bastogne walnut stock features a Dakota skeleton grip cap and buttplate, and is extensively checkered with a 26 panel pattern with fine ribbons throughout. All metalwork was accomplished by Williams metalsmith Rob Canze, and the stock and checkering executed by Williams stockmaker Kevin Wigton. Photo by Terry Tremewan Gunmaker Hughes was looking for a suitable sidelock barreled action around which to craft a superb duck gun for one of his clients. He found what he was looking for when a Belgian exhibitor at the SCI Convention displayed an in-the-white barreled action. It had been made in Belgium by Britte Armes En Blanc, which ceased making sporting gun parts in 1936. That barreled action had been sitting in the basement of the former company for nearly seventy years! Hughes did much of the metalwork, rust-bluing the gun, and nitre-bluing the screws and small parts. E.L. “Larry” Peters executed the wonderful layout and engraving, Doug Turnbull Restorations did the color case-hardening, and J. Peter “Pete” Mazur charcoal-blacked the furniture and gold-plated the lock parts. Photo by Steven Dodd Hughes A lightweight 270 Improved from the shop of Lee Helgeland, weighing in at six pounds, twelve ounces, with scope and mounts. It features a G3?0 Mauser action and a 26-inch Krieger barrel. The stock was crafted from a stick of tiger-tail California English walnut. Jerome Glimm did the screw head engraving, George Komadina did the rust blue, and Larry Baer did the color case on the trigger guard, rings and bases. Lee did everything else, in-house. Photos by "Steven Dodd Hughes" Close-up view of an absolutely magnificent Winchester 73 that Bob Swartley engraved “after the art of Albert Bierstadt.” Swartley's scrollwork is so distinctive that it can be recognized from a distance by anyone even slightly knowledgeable of his work. His bulino work is delicate and utterly exquisite. Jim Blair is another relatively young engraver whose work is so good it is mind-boggling. His work on this 22 is superlative. I can't imagine a more attractive job than this example of his artistry. A right side and left-side view of a lovely rifle which exhibits a little of the California influence on maker Ray Riganian. The diamond-shaped ivory inlays are somewhat reminiscent of the Roy Weatherby rifle. Ray started with a Winchester Model 70 Classic action, and he applied all the bells and whistles to it. Surface grinding, truing all surfaces concentric with the bore, fitting Blackburn bottom metal, making custom bases for modified Talley rings, building up and checkering the bolt release, and thinning the trigger to a shotgun-type trigger, are just some of the refinements to the action. He fitted a Krieger barrel and chambered it for the 7mm Weatherby Magnum cartridge. He then crafted the stock from a very nice stick of California English walnut, and pillar-bedded the barreled action into the wood. This rifle is a tack-driver, according to Riganian. Photo courtesy of Ray Riganian The Springfield action 400 Whelen rifle from the shop of N.L. Heineke is shown here without the case and accessories. Styled after the pre-war Griffin & Howe sporters so favored by Col. Whelen, it is a superb rifle. The rifle is chambered for the 400 Whelen cartridge, and is fitted with two scopes, a Burris 4? scope and a Lyman Alaskan 2.5? scope, but mounted in G&H side mounts. A magnificent Terry Tussey custom .45 auto fabricated from a Caspian Arms frame and slide. When finished, master engraver Eric Gold, who also carved the superb ivory grips, marvelously engraved the gun. This gun is a superb example of the engraver's art. This cased flintlock pistol is the work of Jerry Huddleston. Jerry made every item and every piece in this set, including the case, with the exception of the commercially acquired lock. Even there, he completely redid the lock to meet his requirements. He even cast all the silver accoutrements, and made the barrel. He also did all the engraving and inlay work. A nice side view of a lovely Colt Single Action Army revolver. The revolver is a 5-inch barrel 357 Magnum 3rd Generation Colt. Ron engraved the gun in what Colt calls tight American scroll, ? coverage or “C” coverage. The gold inlay work is in the fashion of Leonard Francolini. Dan Chesnak did the ivory grips, and the case colors and bluing are by Dewey Vicknair. Two images of a glorious rifle put together by a team of superb craftsmen. The action is a “baby” Farquharson that was made by Clayton Nelson, probably twenty or so years ago. Fine rifle connoisseur Jack Lilliendahl somehow ended up with the action and another superb project was begun. Steve Heilmann did the metalwork on the rifle, and barreled and chambered it for the 17 HMR cartridge. Stockmaker James Tucker crafted the extraordinary stock from an exceptional stick of walnut. Sam Welch executed the engraving in a theme suitable to the caliber of the rifle, and dubbed the rifle the “Rabbit rifle,” or sometimes “Thumper.” The finishing chores were turned over to Pete Mazur, a master of the alchemy of metal finishing. NEXT STEP: Download Your Free Storm Tactical Printable Target Pack 62 Printable MOA Targets with DOT Drills - Rifle Range in YARDS This impressive target pack from our friends at Storm Tactical contains 62 printable targets for rifle and handgun range use. Target grids and bullseye sizes are in MOA. Ideal for long-range shooting! Get Free Targets

Hunting Wild Boar in California

Trending: Best Places to Buy Ammo Online and [Buyer's Guide] 7 Best AR-15s Here’s the good news: you’re about to learn everything you need to go on a California pig hunt. And here’s the better news: pound-for-pound and dollar-for-dollar, you’ll struggle to find a hunt anywhere in the US that’s a better value. In one day of hunting you’re going to spend very little money, do some incredible hiking through the landscapes that made California famous, and quite possibly go home with 50-150 lbs of meat so good that two whole religions made their people stop eating it. What is a Wild Boar? First, let’s define what we’re hunting. Any unmarked free-roaming pig is legally “wild”. But when you think of wild boar (often an interchangeable term with wild pig or wild hog), you probably think of something like the picture below. Surprisingly, that’s the same species as the pink pigs in a barnyard — they’re all variants of Sus scrofa . Wild Boar, Sus scrofa If you had come to California before the 1700s, you’d have had a bad time hunting them — the species didn’t exist here until Spanish and Russian explorers brought them in. Over time, as pigs escaped, a wild population developed.  That population eventually merged with the Eurasian wild boars introduced in the 1920s, and that produced the wild pigs we see today. In contrast to domestic pigs, the wild variants have tusks, thicker hair, and powerful shoulders that taper to a smaller back half. Amazingly, domestic pigs that escape to the wild will look just like their feral cousins within a few generations. What To Bring On Your Hunt Bolt Action Rifles, Kimber Gun It’s always nice to have an excuse to break out the fancy equipment, so let’s start with the fun stuff: your gun! But I should mention that for pig hunting, a rifle isn’t required.  Archery and 12-gauge shotgun slugs are popular too, and very effective.  Even handguns are suitable, as long as you can confidently make clean, ethical shots at range (even though pigs are often viewed as pests, we shouldn’t just be winging shots at them). Suitable handgun calibers are .44 Magnum or bigger, although for mature pigs, it’s better to stick to .454 Casull or similarly bonkers cartridges. .357 Magnum vs Even Bigger Calibers All that said, rifles are ideal for most hunters. W ith a little bit of practice, you’ll be able to use a scoped rifle to confidently take shots at 200-300 yards. A scope with 3-9x adjustable zoom is a good all-around choice, and there are plenty of solid entry-level options around $200. The Vortex Diamondback , Leupold VX-1 , and Nikon ProStaff are particularly popular. Check out our How to Choose a Rifle Scope article for more! For the rifle itself, you’ll get the most bang for your buck with a bolt-action gun . No need to spend more than about $700.  The popular Tikka T3, for example, will do everything you need for that price. As far as rifle caliber , you can get away with .243 Winchester or similar cartridges on smaller pigs, but a bigger gun will give you the flexibility to go after any size hog you see. Ideal all-around calibers are 7mm-08 Remington, .270 Winchester, and .308 Winchester — all are versatile, accurate, and carry enough power out to several hundred yards.  Within that range, a well-placed shot with any of those cartridges will make a clean kill.  And you’ll be able to use the same gun to hunt more or less anything up to the size of an elk. Rifle Caliber Smallest to Largest Binoculars Other things to bring: look at what hunting guides spend money on — boots and binoculars. It’s common to see a guide wearing $30 jeans, $500 boots, and $2000 binoculars.  There’s no need to spend that much, but you can count on a few miles of hiking — it’s important that your clothes and footwear be very comfortable, broken-in, and weather-appropriate.  Bring layers that you can add and remove as the weather shifts.  And good binoculars will let you do the walking with your eyes instead of your feet. Spend a few hundred dollars on a pair with tough construction and crystal clear glass.  Treat them well and you can count on decades of use.  High-quality glass will pull pigs out of distant shadows that would just look like a blur in an inferior pair of binoculars. Start your search with the Leupold BX-2  Acadia and the Vortex Diamondback . Hunting License Lastly, you’ll need a California hunting license ($47.01 for residents, $163.65 for nonresidents) and a wild pig tag ($22.42 for residents, $77.34). There’s no limit on the number of pigs you shoot, but you do need to buy one pig tag ahead of time for each pig.  (If you think of it in terms of dollars-per-pound-of-meat, it’s an incredible deal.)  You can buy your license and tags online here .  Also bring a sharp knife, cooler, water, snacks, and backpack for transporting supplies and meat. The Hunt Itself California Boar Hunting Land You have two choices up front: private land vs. public land, and guided vs. unguided. While California does have plenty of public land hunting opportunities, they aren’t quite as plentiful as in the mountain states and you’ll likely find more success (and less competition from other hunters) on high-quality private land. If you’re hunting unguided, make sure you’re authorized to hunt any private land that you step onto. On a guided hunt, your guide will be sure to arrange those permissions ahead of time.  Guided hunts cost more, typically $600-1200 per hunter per day (plus a tip for your guide). In exchange, you get a guide who’s familiar with the area and the behavior of the pigs that inhabit it, pre-arranged access to any private land you’ll be hunting, the guide’s keen eye in spotting and tracking animals, and field dressing and transport out of the field of any pigs you shoot. I t sounds expensive until you consider that if you shoot two pigs, you could be going home with 150+ lbs. of top-quality wild meat.  That quickly pays for itself with all the money you won’t have to spend at the butcher. Generally, a guided hunt is the way to go for beginners or anybody who wants to maximize the odds of finding pigs. If you’re on a very tight budget, are an experienced hunter, or just want to figure it out on your own, an unguided hunt is a better fit for you. ( Full disclosure: I run a company that makes it easy to book guided hunts in California online, with no fees or extra charges. [EDIT: OutpostHunting has moved to Texas and are no longer booking hunts in California. If you’re down in Texas, check them out!] The pig season is open year-round, and you can find a hunt near you at https://outposthunting.com ) Unless you’re using dogs, pig hunting is generally spot-and-stalk. That means walking slowly through the land — watching for pig sign, trails, or any matted-down grass that would indicate a bedding area — and working your way to a high point where you can use your binoculars to scan miles of country (known as “glassing”). Often your guide will know places that pigs like to eat or travel through, and he’ll pick a glassing spot that overlooks those areas.  If a spot hasn’t turned up any signs of pigs after a couple hours, you’ll move to a different spot and repeat the process.  In areas with thriving pig populations, it shouldn’t be too long before this turns up good shot opportunities. The Shot Where to Shoot a Boar Aim at the red dot in the picture above. Some people advocate head or neck shots, and those are instantly deadly if well-aimed. B ut the margin of error on them is small — if you’re off by a few inches, you could miss entirely or worse, wound the pig badly without killing it. The lung/heart shot depicted by the red dot will drop the pig and kill it cleanly within a couple seconds.  It also gives you a nice, big target. A pig’s heart and lungs are farther forward than a deer’s. Whereas you shoot a deer just behind the shoulder, on a pig you should shoot straight through the shoulder.  That will put the bullet through both shoulders, both lungs, and the blood vessels at the top of the heart — a quick, nearly instant kill that will do the best job of preventing a wounding or a miss. Processing Your Pig Two Pigs in the Snow Once the pig is down, approach it carefully, watching for any breathing or movement. A wounded boar is very dangerous, so you should be sure it’s dead before you get close. Once you’re positive, go up to it, take a minute to reflect on the hunt so far, and take some pictures if you’d like. Using the tag you bought, tag the carcass before moving it. When you’re ready to clean the pig, ideally you’ll want to hang it from a stand or a tree. You can do the field dressing on the ground if hanging isn’t an option, but just be careful not to let the meat get dirty. Make a shallow cut from just above the anus to the base of the sternum. Be careful to go around the genitals and not to nick the bladder, any organs, or any part of the digestive system — slip the knife under the skin and then turn it so that as you cut, the blade is facing out of the pig, not down into it. With a sharp knife, the skin should zip right open. Carefully open the abdomen and scoop the guts out onto the ground. You can use a saw to split the sternum if you’d like, which will give you more space to work with. Discard the innards in a place that the guide or landowner says is ok. On public land, move them away from any trails, bedding areas, or rest areas. They’ll disappear to scavengers within a couple days. Now skin the pig (just pull the skin hard to separate it from the carcass, making small cuts to the connective tissue as needed), remove the hooves and head, and start bagging the meat! Keep it dry and dirt-free as you handle it. You’ll want to take all four limbs (the top part of the back legs is the ham, and the top part of the front legs is the pork shoulder or butt), as well as the backstraps (long strips of meat running down the outside of the spine, equivalent to the New York strip on a cow) and the tenderloins (long, thinner strips running along the inside of the spine). Just don’t take any meat that has visible bullet damage. Adventurous eaters are sure to save the heart, liver, and head — a slow-cooked pig head turns up several pounds of the softest, most flavorful pulled pork you’ll find anywhere. Cooking Pulled Pork, porkbeinspired.com I’d need a few sets of new fingers to get even halfway through writing about how you can cook pig meat. YouTube is a great resource for specific recipes, and you can treat wild pig mostly the same as store-bought pig, with two exceptions: To protect against any diseases like trichinosis that a wild pig might have, it’s important to cook it well-done. Be sure to take it beyond 160 ºF, which most slow-cooking method will do. Compared to farm-raised animals, wild pigs are pro athletes. That means leaner meat that’s easier to dry out — wet and/or slow cooking methods will work best and keep the meat tender. Smoking, barbecuing, braising, slow-cooking, and stews will all produce awesome results for you. You can also grind the meat with some fat (bacon, for example) and make burgers that you’ll eat so fast you might lose a hand. Just avoid quick, dry methods like searing or fast grilling. If you’re still wondering whether pig hunting is for you, I can help: it is. It’s some of the highest-value, most fun hunting you can do anywhere, and it works well for people of any experience level. And California is one of the best places in the country to do it. It’s normal to have lots of questions. You’ll still have some even after your hunt. Lean on YouTube, Google, and your guide to answer them, and go out expecting a memorable experience.

Collectors Love The FN-49 Rifle

/* custom css */.td_uid_2_5f379d262c007_rand.td-a-rec-img { text-align: left; } .td_uid_2_5f379d262c007_rand.td-a-rec-img img { margin: 0 auto 0 0; } FN 1949 rifle 7x57mm Venezuelan contract with the correct 15-inch bayonet. (Photo credit RIA auctions) WWII Saw the first widespread use of semi-automatic battle rifles. The U.S. M-1 Garand, Soviet SVT 38 & 40, and the German G-43 all saw action. There were other designs in use as well but they were not mass-produced or issued for general military use. Added to this history is another design that could have ended up on either side of the conflict but instead spent the war on the design table. I am referring to the Fabrique National model 1949 rifle. It is also known as an SAFN (semi-automatic Fabrique National) model of 1949. It was actually designed just before the outbreak of WWII. Dieudonne Saive, chief design engineer at FN in the 1930s came up with the design for a self-loading rifle that used a fixed magazine. Unfortunately for Saive and FN, Germany occupied Belgium in May, 1940. Mr. Saive vowed he would never work for the Nazis or allow his design to fall into their hands. He fled Belgium, taking the plans for the design and several other FN engineers with him. He ended up in England and went to work in the Royal Ordnance Corp Small Arms Design Unit. During this time the SAFN-49 design was perfected. A few prototypes were made but wartime production demands did not allow for diversion of resources to an un-tested project. In late 1944 the Allied forces liberated Belgium. Saive wasted little time before packing up his expatriate design team and moving back. The FN factories had been looted and stripped by the Germans and the next few years were spent getting FN back up and running. After the war FN was actually in better shape than much of the arms industry in other nations. Most arms production facilities had been bombed repeatedly and were nothing more than piles of rubble. With a perfected SAFN design, they began marketing it to the post-war world. Of course, there were tons of surplus military weaponry in Europe at the time and it was difficult to find buyers for the new rifle. The Belgian Army was the first to buy the new rifle, adopting it in 1951 chambered for the .30-06 cartridge. There were 125,072 FN-49 rifles made in .30-06. The Belgians used a majority of the .30-06 guns. Luxemborg and Columbia acquired them as well. In all, there were more than 176,000 FN-49s built. Venezuela purchased 8,003 in 7x57mm; Argentina bought 5,541 in 7.65mm; Egypt received 37,641 in 8x57mm. The Columbian, Argentine, Egyptian and Venezuelan rifles all bear their respective national crests on the top of the receiver. The Belgian FN-49s are marked “ABL” and the Luxemborg guns are marked “AL.” Related GunDigest Articles How to Inspect a Used Rifle New Traditions Mountain Rifle Released Gun Digest's Top 10 Gun Collecting Articles There were small quantities of the rifle purchased by other nations as well. These were mostly samples and prototypes and were not adopted for military use. There was even a handful of the rifles imported to the U.S. by Browning Arms Co. for commercial sales. These were chambered in .30-06 and had a flash hider similar to that found on the Venezuelan 7mm model. The only way to distinguish them from military contract pieces is by the lack of any national crest on the receiver. It is assumed these Browning rifles were assembled from left over SAFN parts since they were listed in the Browning catalogue in 1961, at least five years after production stopped. The FN 1949 was in production from 1949 to 1956. There were some minor production variations in the rifle, including a sniper version. These have a dovetail rail on the left side of the receiver and the FN factory markings are on the right. The mounting system usually used was purchased in the U.S. from Echo Co. of Boise, Idaho. The scopes used were a variety of European-made models. There were many FN-49s made with the scope dovetail that were never issued as sniper rifles. In my own experience I would guess that about half of the FN-49s I see have the dovetail. The Belgian-issue .30-06 rifles marked ABL actually had the option for select-fire operation. With the fixed 10-round magazine, I can’t see where that was worth the effort. You might get two short bursts. The receiver is slightly different to accept the select fire components. Because of this fact, there will never be any Belgian issue FN-49s on the U.S. market as the BATF would consider it a machine gun. Some might have been imported into Canada and carried into the states before they tightened border crossings. Some of the trigger groups have been sold in the U.S. but a semi-auto receiver requires modification to install them. Of course possession of an FN-49 with such a modified receiver would be totally illegal unless it was registered as a machine gun prior to 1986. The Venezuelan version is the only one that was issued with a flash hider. The other contracts use a simple threaded steel cap to cover the threads on the muzzle. There is even a bit of difference in these. The Egyptian 8mm rifles have a cap that covers the end of the barrel. The various .30-06 rifles have a cap that covers the threads but leaves about 1/8 inch of the barrel protruding out the front. The Argentine FN-49s were originally made in 7.65mm. The Argentine Navy received many of these. The navy rifles are marked “ARA”(Armada Republica Argentina) next to the Argentine crest on the receiver. In the early 1960s the Argentine Navy converted their FN-49s to 7.62mm Nato. This was done by installing a new barrel. At the same time they were modified to use a detachable magazine. This was a 20-round magazine that resembles a FN-FAL magazine but it is not interchangeable. This was the only official conversion of the SAFN to use a detachable magazine. Some Argentine Navy FN-49s were imported to the U.S. in the 1990s.

Summary

The best spotting scope tripod for you is out there. But it’s difficult to wade through the number of choices that are available. We’ve handpicked eight different products that are considered the best available.