Subscribe

Your email:

Connect with Beretta

Beretta Blog

Current Articles | RSS Feed RSS Feed

Firearms Accessories: Today's Choices

 

By Keith Hollar – Guest Contributor

As I was thinking about the state of the accessory market I realized how good we have it at the moment.  There is almost an overwhelming amount of options out there for almost any firearm you have.  You can get different stocks, sights, barrels, triggers, scopes, electronic sights, compensators, flash hiders, magazines, flashlights, lasers, or mounting rails for almost any weapon out there.  Don’t like the finish on your firearm?  There are companies out there today that can create almost any design you can dream up on your firearms.  There are also finishes that you can buy and do yourself.

Usually I don’t make too many changes to my firearms after I purchase them.  Most of my rifles have scopes on them and all but one or two of my handguns have at least aftermarket stocks on them.  On handguns I feel that a nice pair of stocks is an easy way to dress up and personalize a firearm.  One of the latest handguns I’ve done this to is my Beretta Stampede.



It is a standard model so it came with the black plastic checkered stocks.  I never really cared for them, however it took me a while to figure out and find the ones I wanted.  I settled on ivory colored polymer ones because I really liked the way it dressed up this revolver with its case hardened frame.  I also felt it added a classic look to it.  I purchased another pair from a small company that I found on the internet.  When I received them they were not like the picture, but because of the cost I tried to see if they’d work.  I don’t know which revolver they were made for but it sure wasn’t the Stampede.  The shape was all wrong and they were way too big.  Luckily I was able to find a pair of the Beretta branded ones on the accessories website and ordered them.  These, no surprise, fit it just right.  They also make it feel a lot better in the hand.  Even though they are smooth they don’t slip around in my hand during shooting.  Now that is with some light .45 Colt loads and I wasn’t sweating so I’ll have to see how they perform long term.

What are your thoughts on this subject?  What do you like to do to your firearms to individualize them?

Make sure you follow Beretta on Facebook, Twitter, or YouTube

This post and its contents are the views and opinions of the author only, and do not represent those of Beretta.

Make sure you follow Beretta on FacebookTwitter or YouTube

 

This post and its contents are the views and opinions of the author only, and do not necessarily represent Beretta.

Ode to the Range Bag

 
by: Phil McNaughton, Guest Contributor
More thoughts and theories, this time regarding that most abused, underrated piece of gear: the range bag.
When I started shooting, I went to the range with a Beretta and a box of ammo.  Now I have a range bag that is bigger than my first car, and my ammo won’t even fit in it.
Before you leave for the range, make sure the magazines in your range bag fit the guns in your range bag.  Ditto for holsters.
Carry extra eye and ear protection in your bag.  Somebody will show up without them.
Multigun Match Math: 1 range bag + 2 arms + 3 guns + 4 types of ammo + 5 stages = GET A CART.
Yoda: “When using range bag for rifle rest, mindful of muzzle blast, you will be.”
Use black duct tape for patching your range bag.  It’s more tacticool than the gray stuff.
Spare gun:  if your race blaster goes down in the middle of a match, and you drove 4.5 hours to get there, are you going to just leave?  Of course not, that’s why you carry that huge bag!  Break out the backup and get back in the game.
Got fiber optic sights on your favorite blaster?  Got extra fiber optic rod in the bag?
A shooter should have a caddy, like a golfer.  I’ve tried offering the job to those girls in the lingerie catalog, but they don’t return my calls. L
Electronic optic?  Check.  Electronic hearing protection?  Check.  Batteries for both? 
At one time or another, there has been a holster, magazine, or part in your bag for a gun you don’t own.
I carry two towels in my range bag: one for my guns and one for me.  When I leave the range, my face is covered in gun oil and my guns are covered in sweat.
First Aid: small bandages, sunscreen, bug spray, and Skittles are necessities for every range bag.  
Whenever a “discussion” ensues about the rules of a specific shooting sport, someone pulls a rulebook out of their bag.  I’m that guy.
Ink pens are scarcer than humility at a match.  Carry a few, loan them out.  You will never see them again.
Squib rod: $10.  Small screwdrivers: $5.  Multi-tool: $30.  That funky doohickey that adjusts my front sight: free with purchase.  Having the right tool in your bag for quick repairs and adjustments at the range: PRICELESS.
Stapler & staples:  ever drive to range and realize you have nothing to put your targets up with?
Gloves:  if you’re an asset to our sport, you help with match setup and teardown.   So just remember, splinters in the trigger finger can ruin your day.
Guys, if you are carrying a range bag that is smaller than say, a child’s backpack, it is perfectly acceptable for your shooting pals to call it a “man purse.

Make sure you follow Beretta on Facebook, Twitter, or Youtube.


This post and its contents are the views and opinions of the author only, and do not necessarily represent those of Beretta.

Make sure you follow Beretta on FacebookTwitter or YouTube

 

This post and its contents are the views and opinions of the author only, and do not necessarily represent Beretta.

Crutching Around With A CCW

 

By Jason Parks – Guest Contributor

I have some questions that I want you to think about for a minute:

How does someone with a permanent physical disability carry a concealed weapon?

How much more time does it take for them to draw and fire compared to someone without a physical disability?

How can they avoid a confrontation if they cannot quickly extricate themselves from a dangerous location?

What affect does having a physical disability have on your situational awareness?

Do laws take into account a person’s physical disability if they are forced to use their weapon?

Now I want you to consider this scenario:

A man is home in bed with his wife. The sound of breaking glass wakes him up. He lies there for a moment listening. Did he dream it or was it real? His wife is still asleep beside him. Then he hears it – the sound of the deadbolt unlocking and the slight squeak of a door hinge that he has been meaning to oil.

He realizes that someone has just broken into his home.

He wakes his wife up and tells her what’s happening. She grabs the phone and calls 911. He gets out of bed and into his wheelchair. He is paralyzed from the waist down from a car wreck. He gets his pistol and flashlight from the drawer of his night stand.

His wife has been shooting a few times, but is not that familiar with guns. He is armed and ready, but his two children’s rooms are between him and the intruder. To get to their rooms he has to wheel himself out of his bedroom and down the hall to their rooms. He can’t simultaneously hold the pistol and the flash light and wheel himself into the hallway.

What does he do?

Most people don’t think about the challenges that people with physical disabilities face when it comes to CCW and personal safety. I think about it because a little over two years ago, I broke my left femur while walking. Believe me, I wish I had a great story to go with it but it was simply that I stepped wrong and broke it. The bone was brittle, and it shattered because of the radiation treatment I received when I had cancer. For a good story, remind me to tell you about the chainsaw incident.

Anyway, I have been on crutches for two years, two months and counting. I recently acquired my concealed carry permit so all these questions have been on my mind along with figuring out how to best carry a concealed pistol while on crutches. The standard stuff just doesn’t work. I Googled “concealed carry”+”disability” a few weeks back and got a lot of links that I have not looked at yet. I wanted to be able to take you on this little jaunt into figuring all this out with me.

So what do you think? Is it harder for someone with a physical disability to protect themselves and their families?

This post and its contents are the views and opinions of the author only, and do not necessarily represent those of Beretta.

Make sure you follow Beretta on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.

You can follow Jason on Twitter @thejasonparks.

Make sure you follow Beretta on FacebookTwitter or YouTube

 

This post and its contents are the views and opinions of the author only, and do not necessarily represent Beretta.

Impressions From A Gun Show Virgin

 

by Carrie Lightfoot - Guest Contributor

Here are some simple impressions and a few questions from a gun show virgin:






There are not too many women at gun shows.... Yet!

I didn’t get strange looks for walking around with a gun on my hip.

I did get curious looks for being a woman cruising the aisles.

It is oddly comfortable and comforting being surrounded by guns, ammo and gun loving people!

I have no difficulty believing the recent Gallop Poll that said 47% of homes in the US have a firearm. They were all at the show!
You can wear ANYTHING you want to a gun show and I mean anything.  
Fully grown adult males actually will pin handwritten signs on scraps of paper on themselves! 
What are all those little parts filling the tiny bins on so many tables?
Gun lovers are really nice and patient people.
The people watching doesn’t get any better.
There are many “interesting characters” at gun shows.  
Bring a cart with wheels - everything is VERY heavy.
Buy your ammunition on your way out!
Going to a gun show is like going to the humane society. There are so many guns that need good homes. You MUST leave with one.
You see the wildest T-shirts for sale and on the visitors.
I didn’t expect to see machetes and Gothic swords - but they were fascinating.
The collector firearms are amazing.
The military historic paraphernalia is sobering.
I want one of those huge rounds in my home. I don’t know what they are - but they are really big, very heavy and very cool!
I like the sound of stun guns.
Nothing beats a hot dog, a Coke and a stadium full of firearms.

Carrie Lightfoot is owner of The Well Armed Woman and quest contributor for the Beretta Blog. Join the dynamic group of women shooters on Facebook orTwitter and visit www.thewellarmedwoman.com
Make sure you follow Beretta on Facebook, Twitter or YouTube
This post and its contents are the views and opinions of the author only, and do not necessarily represent Beretta.

Make sure you follow Beretta on FacebookTwitter or YouTube

 

This post and its contents are the views and opinions of the author only, and do not necessarily represent Beretta.

The PSA Shootout

 
by Phil McNaughton- Guest Contributor

Springtime is wonderful in South Central PA.  Flowers are blooming, birds are singing, and if you listen closely, the musical dings of lead pounding steel echo through the countryside.  That's right, it’s spring, and it’s time for the PSA Shootout.  Held annually at the Palmyra Sportsmen’s Association, the PSA Shootout is the largest knock-down steel match in the country, bringing in nearly 600 shooters for an all-steel speed shooting match. 
There are 6 stages, with 25-35 falling steel targets per stage.  With approximately 180 plates, at 600 shooters... Yeah, that's well over 100,000 rounds downrange over the course of the 4-day event.
The game is pretty simple: shoot all the plates until they are down, as fast as you can.  There are 4 handgun divisions:  Stock Auto (iron sights, no comps), Open Auto (optics, compensators, etc), Stock Revolver (iron sights, no comps), and Open Revolver (optics, comps, etc).  Shooters can enter multiple divisions with different guns. 
Automatics are downloaded to 10 rounds in a magazine, and revolvers are limited to 6 shots before a reload.  The start position is either holstered, or gun in hand with the muzzle touching the table, and reloads can be done off your belt, or the table.
The stages contained large plates, spaced closely together for those clutch-dumping speed runs, along with just enough small plates so you had to slam on the brakes and really see that front sight.  Someone in Texas must have read my post about the Star, and decided to teach me a lesson by stacking 2 stars on top of each other in Stage 1. 
Although my Beretta 92G Elite II ran flawlessly all day, the rest of my squad fought with an abundance of gun malfunctions.  Failures to feed, fire, eject, and who knows what else seemed to pop up on every other run.  At least one shooter had to break out the back up gun.  This is one of those events where folks like to see how light they can load their ammo, but I try to stay away from the sub-power factor bunny fart loads.  It might shoot soft, but it might also not cycle your gun reliably, or knock down the steel.
This was my first year at PSA, I managed to squeak by in 60th place, out of 271 shooters in Stock Auto.  I had solid runs all day, with only 1 stage that disappointed me... yeah, the one with the stars...
So next spring, if you’re looking to start your shooting season off with a bang, or a ding, try the PSA Shootout.  You'll see some old friends, meet some new ones, and have a blast.  Just bring your safe attitude, your favorite pistols, and ammo.  Lots of ammo.
Make sure you follow Beretta on Facebook, Twitter, or Youtube.


This post and its contents are the views and opinions of the author only, and do not necessarily represent those of Beretta.

Make sure you follow Beretta on FacebookTwitter or YouTube

 

This post and its contents are the views and opinions of the author only, and do not necessarily represent Beretta.

Barrel Full of Monkeys

 
by Rick Chisholm - Guest Contributor

I don’t think I’ve been to a single gun shop in my life that did not have an example of a blown barrel. Now the advent of YouTube has provided a fertile resource for the curious to watch as people blow up their guns either through ignorance or happenstance. While it does make an interesting conversation piece -- having a barrel on display peeled back like a banana -- blowing up your barrel is no laughing matter and poses serious risk of injury to the shooter and bystanders.

    Blown barrels are rarely due to defect on the part of the barrel: the usual culprit would be an obstruction, although I would not rule out poorly crafted reloads in some cases. Obstructions come in a variety of forms, but commonly it is something left over from cleaning the gun, like a small patch, or piece of one. 

    Be sure to inspect your barrel after cleaning and before taking the gun to the range or blind. When afield, take special care to keep the muzzle off the ground, and if you drop the gun be sure to unload it and inspect the bore before carrying on with your hunt.

    A little caution and due diligence goes a long way to keeping you safe while you spend time with your firearms. Happy and safe shooting.


Rick Chisholm is an IT Security Officer and guest contributor for the Beretta Blog. He can be reached on Twitter

Make sure you follow Beretta on Facebook, Twitter, or YouTube

Make sure you follow Beretta on FacebookTwitter or YouTube

 

This post and its contents are the views and opinions of the author only, and do not necessarily represent Beretta.

Eat Your Vegetables

 

by Carrie Lightfoot - Guest Contributor


“I don't want any vegetables, thank you. I paid for the cow to eat them for me.” Doug Coupland 




 

"Life expectancy would grow by leaps and bounds if green vegetables smelled as good as bacon."  Doug Larson




I have noticed something very interesting. I post a photo on Facebook of a cat wielding a machine gun or a Mae West quote about being a bad girl and within hours - over 500 shares, even more LIKEs and tons of great comments. I post a photo of an attractive woman brandishing a firearm and BINGO thousands of shares and likes and hundreds of comments. (Yes, there are tons of MALE Well Armed Women fans.)  I post a link to a phenomenal article loaded with potentially life saving tips and/or spot on marksmanship tips and..... Maybe 10 shares, 100 likes and only 5-10 comments. 
So what is that? 

That is human nature. We love something quick, fun and satisfying but don’t really like to take the time to take care of our “firearm health”. There are a few areas in our lives, where this probably really doesn’t matter much. Then there are the few that really do matter, like our health, our relationships, our careers and yes, our skills as an armed personal defense shooter. But of course as Booker T. Washington said “Nothing ever comes to one, that is worth having, except as a result of hard work.” 

This is where the Broccoli comes in. 
It really is like eating vegetables. We know they are good for us, very good for us. We don’t even question it and yet some of us still avoid them like the plague. So What can we do to get over the barrier of “if it is good for me, than no thank you”? What can we do to make these “vegetables” taste better besides wrap them in bacon? 
We know that regarding one’s physical health, if they have an illness or are diagnosed with a serious medical issue, they will make the dietary and lifestyle changes necessary. They WILL begin to eat their vegetables. The fear becomes the motivator. 
Now, none of us should have to, or needs to go through the trauma of a close call or an attempted attack to create the fear to get us to change our ways, should we? Of course not.  It takes the mental commitment and belief that we each could REALLY be in this type of horrifying situation to create the fear that will cause us to change our ways and do the reading, training and practicing necessary.
So the moral of the story is: enjoy the simple things and the things that make you laugh, but also invest in your firearm health. Read, train, practice and grow in your knowledge of what just might keep you alive if the horrific and unexpected happens. Oh and yes, eat your vegetables, too!

Carrie Lightfoot is owner of The Well Armed Woman and quest contributor for the Beretta Blog. Join the dynamic group of women shooters on Facebook or Twitter or on her website.
Make sure you follow Beretta on Facebook, Twitter or YouTube
This post and its contents are the views and opinions of the author only, and do not necessarily represent Beretta.


Make sure you follow Beretta on FacebookTwitter or YouTube

 

This post and its contents are the views and opinions of the author only, and do not necessarily represent Beretta.

Hello, Texas? You can have your star back…

 
by Phil Mcnaughton- Guest Contributor
This is a Texas Star target. 
It is a common array at practical and steel shooting events.  The 5 plates at the points of the star are the actual targets.  Shoot a plate, it falls to the ground. 
I know, it sounds pretty simple.  Until you factor in the axle.  Yes, an axle, in the center of the star.  With all the plates in place, the star is balanced.  Knock one plate off, the balance is gone, and the star spins, eventually swinging back and forth like a pendulum until all the plates are down.    
It’s typically shot with pistols or shotguns, the latter being a little easier on the nerves if you have the right shot pattern.  Although I have personally never seen it, I suppose you could use rifles on it, if the distance was far enough, and the steel was rated for rifle rounds, although the very thought of trying to clear this thing with a rifle, at distance, gives me nightmares.
There are some wicked variations of the star.  I’ve seen paper targets in place of the steel, with weights added to keep the star in constant motion.  Adding strategically-placed no-shoot targets (the ones you don’t want to put holes in), anywhere near the star tends to result in no-shoots with a lot of holes in them.  Even better: let’s put 2 stars together on the same axle.  We’ll put paper or steel targets on one star, and no-shoots on the other.  Then we’ll make them spin in opposite directions!
Good grief, who thinks of this stuff?
There are some “tricks” to clearing the star.  Start at the top, work your way down.  This keeps the center of gravity near the bottom, which limits the swinging.  It also helps to pick a spot and wait for the plate.  When it passes, hose it.  A good place to hold your sight is the point where the plates pause to change direction.  This works well, unless a devious match director has hidden that magical spot behind a steel wall, or a no-shoot.  Yes, it happens.
I don’t recommend chasing the moving plates with bullets.  That’s a surefire way to burn up rounds.  The crowd will get a good laugh, but in the end you may be left standing there with an empty gun, as those little plates mock you, merrily swinging along, untouched. 
“Ok, but bad guys don’t move like that.”  I’ve heard folks say that the star doesn’t represent any sort of “real world” target, whatever that is.  I view any challenge on the range as something that will make me a better shooter.  Hopefully none of us ever have to use our shooting skills off the range, but if we do, experience with targets like the star might just give us the edge we need to get home that day.
I really don’t know why it’s called a Texas Star.  It is a big star, after all, and Texas is big on stars.  Maybe its origins can be traced to the Lone Star State?  Sometimes I want to send it back to wherever it came from, but deep down I’m glad someone made this thing.  It’s made me a better shooter. 
Make sure you follow Beretta on Facebook, Twitter, or Youtube.
This post and its contents are the views and opinions of the author only, and do not necessarily represent those of Beretta.

Make sure you follow Beretta on FacebookTwitter or YouTube

 

This post and its contents are the views and opinions of the author only, and do not necessarily represent Beretta.

Things I've learned at the range

 

by Phil McNaughton- Guest Contributor
A few thoughts and theories from my time on the trigger, in no particular order...
  
I shoot faster when I slow down. 
Brussels sprouts make great targets.
Your worst day at the range is still better than your best day at the office.  Unless you work at the range.  Then you are just lucky, and I hate you. 
When you leave the range, nobody will remember how accurate you were, or how fast you were.  Everyone will remember how safe you were. 
Shooting is universal.  Lots of folks do it; lots of folks want to do it.  You may be surprised at who you meet at the range.  You may be surprised at who is waiting for you to take them to the range.
Real shooters know guns.  Hollywood doesn’t.  Learn from the former.
Don’t leave the gun shop empty handed.
Safety doesn’t take a backseat to experience. 
My Beretta will function in rain, snow, sub zero, or triple digit temperatures.  I may not.
They are called “sights” for a reason. See them.
Empty brass is more valuable than gold.
You can never have enough magazines.
Sooner or later you will have a box full of holsters that you don’t wear, or don’t have guns for anymore. 
People will buy a gun simply because it looks cool.
The gun you bought today will be on sale next weekend.  
The only thing you should take seriously at the range is safety.  Everything else is just fun.
The day I stopped worrying about scores is the day I became a better shooter. 
There is no such thing as a “double tap.”  Pay attention to the sights with every shot.
Dry fire until your fingers bleed.  Get bandages and start again.
Someday when you are working on your favorite gun, that little spring will fly across the room into oblivion.
You will buy parts for guns that you don’t own. 
Sometimes steel plates will stay standing after a hit.  Just because they hate you.
My shooting buddies are not really friends.  They are family.

Shooting soda cans is more fun when they are full.  And shaken.
There will always be one clay bird that refuses to break.  Don’t let it win.  Go find it.  Then step on it.
Practice the things that you don’t like to do.  Chances are you need it.
Introduce someone new to the firearms hobby.  Every chance you get.
If you wear a tank top at the range, you will inevitably get burned.  In places you don't want to be burned.
It doesn’t matter what gun you shoot, somebody will make fun it. 
Practice.  Do it a lot.  Do it often.  Do it safely.
A guy loves to watch a girl shoot.  Unless the girl is a better shooter than he is.
Spend less time talking about shooting, and more time doing it.
Make sure you follow Beretta on Facebook, Twitter, or Youtube.
This post and its contents are the views and opinions of the author only, and do not necessarily represent those of Beretta

Make sure you follow Beretta on FacebookTwitter or YouTube

 

This post and its contents are the views and opinions of the author only, and do not necessarily represent Beretta.

Love is a many splendored thing...

 
by Carrie Lightfoot - Guest Contributor

Ahh, a new relationship. The excitement, the long talks, spending as much time together as you possibly can. These things are all part of any new significant relationship. You explore each other, learn everything you can about the other and eventually know everything there is to know.  People begin to say the two of you look alike, act alike, talk alike and, as years pass, even dress alike! I know you know what I am talking about: you have seen couples wearing basically the same outfits, most of them don’t even know they have done it. It just happens. They have grown so much together that they seem to meld into one. 
Yes.... I know I am writing a gun blog and am sure you are wondering “what does this have to do with guns”

Many women and perhaps men, purchase a firearm for self-protection. They want to feel safe and have the means to protect themselves and those they love. So they make the purchase, perhaps even glance through the owner's manual, load it with ammunition and put it in a safe place. Only to be left there, until the day they need it. The honeymoon is over, and so is the relationship.

What’s missing here? Yes: the romance. Every relationship needs attention and some quality time spent together. For a relationship to work, this is required on a regular basis. Otherwise, you will grow apart and become like strangers. 


(photo courtesy of Bouf.com)
 Romance with my gun? you ask. Well, sort of.  

Spending some quality time with your firearm is one of the most important things you can do, not only when you first purchase your gun, but on an ongoing basis. This firearm is extremely important to you: this piece of metal (or plastic, in some cases) will become a part of your body. Heaven forbid the time comes when you must rely on it to save your life, you need to know it, really know it. You need to know how to get it to do what you need it to do, under incredible stress I might add. The level with which you and your firearm are “one” in a life threatening situation will seriously contribute to the outcome. 

Hold it, wear it and work it. (UNLOADED OF COURSE). Regular safe dry-fire practice is a great way to get acquainted and stay acquainted. Take your firearm on a date - go to the range and spend some quality time together. Owning a gun is a long term and committed relationship, one you must actively spend time on and invest yourself in. The rewards? A long, healthy happily-ever-after life together.
I expect you will have some interesting comments on this one! In the meantime, I will leave you with some famous love song lyrics. 

“And in the end, the love you take is equal to the love you make.” - The Beatles, The End

“The greatest thing you'll ever learn, is to love and be loved in return.” - Nat King Cole, Nature Boy

Carrie Lightfoot is owner of The Well Armed Woman and guest contributor for the Beretta Blog. She can be reached on Facebook orTwitter    

Make sure you follow Beretta on Facebook, Twitter or YouTube

This post and its contents are the views and opinions of the author only, and do not necessarily represent those of Beretta.

Make sure you follow Beretta on FacebookTwitter or YouTube

 

This post and its contents are the views and opinions of the author only, and do not necessarily represent Beretta.

All Posts