Gear Reviews

From survival tools to training books – I review all of it right here. My main mission is to provide you with solid information you can trust.

One of the primary missions of is to bring you solid informational articles on all kinds of shooting gear and accessories. We are known for in-depth gun reviews, but we evaluate more than just guns. We provide you with all kinds of informational articles on other shooting accessories and equipment.

Looking for a holster, cleaning kit or knife? You are likely to find our thoughts and views right here. We’ve tried to arrange all of the evaluations into broad categories to make them easier to find.


Without good ammo, a gun is nothing more than an expensive club. However, what really makes a line of ammunition any good? We explore that question, plus take a look at how different loads perform in these reviews.

  • Hornady Critical Defense (.357 Magnum) – Recently, I tested these Magnum loads in a pair of snub-nosed revolvers from Ruger and Smith & Wesson. The ammo did great, and you really should see the photos of these fireballs.
  • Hornady Critical Duty Ammunition – I take a look at the entire line of Critical Duty ammo, including the recently announced loads. I’ve got chronograph testing plus a look at how some of the loads performed the FBI protocols.
  • Liberty Ammunition Civil Defense – After spending the day at the Liberty Ammunition factory, I head out to the range and run the Civil Defense ammo through a lot of guns. All of the chrony testing is published here, and you might be surprised to see how it stacks up against the company’s published velocities.
  • SIG SAUER Elite Performance – I evaluate three different 9mm loads in the relatively new Elite Performance line of ammo from SIG SAUER. I am cautiously optimistic about the rounds, but I also have a fairly large reservation about its use. Read the review to get a full understanding of what I discovered.
  • Winchester Train & Defend 380 ACP – I take a look at the .380 loads in the Train and Defend line from Winchester Ammunition.
  • Winchester USA Forged – If you are looking for inexpensive practice ammo that is made in the United States, give this new line a look. I had a very positive experience with it.


Streamlight TLR-2 Review

There are a lot of gun books on the market that offer a wealth of information from reloading to history. Some are good, some are great and a few are awful. We give you the details on the ones we have read.

  • American Gun – I got an advanced copy of the new Chris Kyle book and was extremely impressed. It is well written, and the history is fascinating. I highly recommend buying or borrowing this book!
  • Armed Response – This is a very good book that introduces someone to the fundamentals of self-defense and the use of firearms for the same. The forward is written by Massad Ayoob, which lends credibility right out of the gate.
  • Beating the Reaper – Dr. John Meade co-wrote this book with an overseas “operator.” If you carry a gun, you need to know how to patch up the holes, cuts and other injuries you are likely to receive when fighting for your life.
  • Black Man with a Gun – Part history book, part firearms training book, Black Man with a Gun is a fantastic read. Check out my video review of the book here.
  • Cartridges of the World – If you need an authoritative reference on modern and obsolete small arms cartridges, this is the book for you. It is a top shelf reference book and no library should be without it.
  • Deadly Force: Understanding Your Right to Self Defense – This is Massad Ayoob’s updated and expanded version of the original In the Gravest Extreme. This should be a must read by anyone who might employ a firearm in self-defense.
  • Defensive Living – Defensive Living is an excellent book for anyone seeking to improve their personal safety. It is well written and an easy read. I highly recommend this for beginners and think experienced shooters can learn a lot from it as well.
  • Defensive Revolver Fundamentals – Anyone who owns a revolver should add this book to their library. Grant Cunningham is the author. A noted wheelgun expert, Cunningham breaks down all of the pros and cons of the revolver through the lens of self-defense. The book is worth twice the price.
  • In the Gravest Extreme – This book is considered by many people to be the seminal work on the use of handguns for personal defense. In the Gravest Extreme was written by Massad Ayoob and is a very good place for people to start when it comes to self-defense.
  • Legally Armed – I had a lot of hope for this book, but ultimately I cannot recommend it. I thought it might serve as a good reference for concealed carry laws and advice, but I found it offered bad information in a number of areas that could lead to your arrest. Read this review and make up your own mind before buying.
  • Modern Reloading – We take a look at the book Modern Reloading writer by Richard Lee, the founder of Lee Precision. It takes a different approach to reload that you are not likely to find in other reloading manuals.
  • Navy SEAL Shooting – I take a look at the latest book from former SEAL Chris Sajnog. I was impressed by this one.
  • Shooter’s Bible to Cartridges – This book hits the same topic as Cartridges of the World (above), but with a totally different perspective. This book focuses on the most popular cartridges, rather than trying to be a complete reference. It also uses high quality, full-color photos throughout the book.
  • Standard Catalog of Remington Firearms – I take a look at this book and was disappointed by it. It is not a complete loss, but this book does not live up to the standard set by the Standard Catalog of Smith & Wesson book below.
  • Standard Catalog of Smith & Wesson – A review of the authoritative tome on all things S&W.  This book is a true encyclopedia on all guns and accessories sold under the Smith & Wesson brand.
  • The Gun Digest Book of Concealed Carry – If you carry a firearm for personal protection, you need to know when you can lawfully use it and how to tactically deploy it. Mas Ayoob covers these and other topics in this “must have” handbook.
  • The Mosin-Nagant Rifle – This is an excellent book on the Mosin-Nagant rifle, and a must for any collector of the guns. It has a lot of detailed information on production numbers, history and what all of those markings mean.
Hoppes Pistol Cleaning Kit Review

Cleaning and Lubrication

Cleaning your guns may be the dull side to shooting, but it is important to keep your guns cleaned and lubed properly. Failure to do so can mean the firearms fail you when you need them most. We give you our thoughts and observations on some of the cleaning gear and lubes we have tried.

  • American Gun Oil – There seems to be a lot of new gun oils on the market. Some make crazy claims, but several are very good for lubrication and protection. We take a look at the new offering from American Gun Oil.
  • Break Free Bore Cleaning Foam – A short article on the bore cleaning foam from Break Free. Can a foam really make gun cleaning easier? Absolutely. This foam does a very good job and exceeded my expectations.
  • Gunslick Snap-n-Pull Shotgun Cleaning Kit – A close look at this portable cleaning kit for your shotgun. It fills a specific need that you might have.
  • J Dewey AR-15 Field Cleaning Kit – We take a look at this high-quality cleaning kit that is 100% Made in the USA. J. Dewey makes some very high-quality cleaning gear, and it is impressive.
  • RAND CLP – I take the new gun oil for a spin, cleaning and lubing a couple of pistols. Best part? No funky smells! It goes on a little thicker but does not gum up the works. But when you work the action, you’ll feel the difference.
  • Remington Squeeg-E Cleaning Kit – Aaron gives us a detailed review of the Remington Squeeg-E cleaning kit. This is a complete kit that gives you everything you could reasonably need.

Eye & Ear Pro

Shooting is a great hobby, and it can be a life-saving skill. Regardless of the reason why you hit the range, you should take steps to protect your eyesight and your hearing. While shooting is an extremely safe activity, accidents can happen. A good set of eye protection can mean the difference between seeing and being blind. Likewise, a good set of ear muffs can ensure you hear well for years to come.

  • Axil SportEar M4 Electronic Hearing Protection – These muffs were a bit of a disappointment. I found them to be uncomfortable with only average noise reduction. The audio circuitry also failed to meet my expectations.
  • Caldwell E-MAX Electronic Hearing Protection – The E-MAX line of ear pro from Caldwell is an exceptional value. It is very reasonably priced and provides very good electronic amplification. This is probably the best value in hearing protection on the market.
  • Caldwell Platinum G3 Muffs – This is probably the worst set of hearing protection I’ve ever tried. It is certainly the worst that I have reviewed to date. Avoid these and go for a pair of the Pelton or Howard Leight listed below.
  • Howard Leight Impact Pro Earmuffs – These electronic earmuffs offer the highest level of noise reduction that I can find under $100. They work extremely well, and are well suited for pistol shooters. Rifle shooters may want to consider the Impact Sport muffs below.
  • Howard Leight Impact Sport Earmuffs – Looking for quality electronic ear pro? These muffs may work for you, but I did run into a problem. But at less than $50, is that drawback enough to skip them? I think they are worth the money, but you be the judge.
  • Peltor Sport Tactical 500 Electronic Hearing Protection – This set of ear pro surpassed my expectation for clear voice amplification. It also offers good noise attenuation and Bluetooth capabilities. It is well worth your consideration.
  • SensGard SG31 Hearing Protection – Protecting your hearing is exceptionally important. Are the SensGard products up to the task? This ear pro uses a different way of attenuating noise, and we found it works very well. However, they are not perfect. Read the full article for the details.

Flashlights & Lasers

review of the Elzetta ZFH1500

Having a flashlight should be a little like having a pocket knife – keep one with you all the time. We review handheld and weapon mounted flashlights right here.

  • Anker LC90 – This is a rechargeable light that I cannot recommend based on its performance as compared to its marketing. It might still serve a use for you, but you need to understand what it is and what it is not.
  • DeWalt 1AAT Flashlight – Need a small, inexpensive flashlight that won’t break the budget? Take a look at the DeWalt 1AAT. Seriously. For the money, it is a great light and mine has been used for several years without a single problem.
  • DeWalt 3D LED Flashlight – Would you believe I replaced my police department issued MagCharger with this DeWalt? I did. It works very well and has proved to be quite durable. It runs on D-cell batteries and throws a lot of light.
  • DeWalt DPGA-3AAA LED Flashlight – Another DeWalt flashlight review? Yes – the first two lights I looked at were so good, I figured I would try a third. This one now rides shotgun in my truck.
  • Elzetta ZFH1500 – This is not a flashlight review, but a review of a simple, affordable and rugged mount for adding a high-intensity light to your AR-15. It works very well and is easy to install.
  • ExtremeBeam M600 Flashlight – This light failed to pass the ANSI tests…twice. I can’t recommend it, and I suggest you read the review to understand why. I thought this torch would be a top performer, but it was not.
  • Factor Cossatot 1000 XL – While the specs looked good on this light, it ultimately proved unworthy of my recommendation.
  • Fenix LD15R – For an EDC light with an emphasis on work, not tactical use, the LD15R is an amazing little light that I recommend completely. I have been very impressed by this light and carry mine with me everywhere. Read my review for the full story, but the short version is I really like it.
  • LaserLyte TGL – If you are looking for a reliable, yet inexpensive red laser aiming unit for the Glock 42 pistol, you might be interested in the TGL. It is very lightweight and has a really attractive street price!
  • Nightstick MT-210 – It would be tough to find a more compact tactical light than the MT-210. But does this light have the light output and durability needed? Well, you might want to read the full review before spending money on it.
  • Nightstick NSR-9944XL – This powerful flashlight has two lights: a main and a work light. It turns out that it is an amazingly useful light.
  • Olight PL-1 II Valkyrie – This weapon light surprised me with how well it performed. It was very durable and the light it threw was very good.
  • Streamlight ProTac 1AA – If you are looking for a very compact light for every day carry, take a look at the ProTac 1AA flashlight. This small light offers enough power for any concealed carry need while not being in the way all day.
  • Streamlight ProTac 1AAA – Light, small and incredible runtime – all of these descriptions apply to the AAA powered Streamlight flashlight. I was impressed by this one.
  • Streamlight ProTac 2AAA – I take a hard look at this lightweight tactical light from Streamlight. It is very thin and weighs a mere 2 ounces, but will it get the job done?
  • Streamlight ProTac HL – This is a long term – 5 year – review of the ProTac HL flashlight. This light is hard to beat when looking at performance and price.
  • Streamlight ProTac HL 3 – This is a seriously bright flashlight with 1,100 lumens and 36k candela. But is the light useable? How about durable? We do run tests, drop tests and check to see if it is really waterproof.
  • Streamlight Strion LED HL – If you need a rechargeable flashlight that is very bright (500 lumens) and is durable enough to be carried in a pocket or mounted on an M-4, you might want to take a look at the Strion LED HL. It is an impressive package.
  • Streamlight TLR-1s HP – Evaluation of this exceptionally bright weapon mounted light. We test this on an AR-15 rifle, and the performance is incredible.
  • Streamlight TLR-2 – We take a look at the updated version of the Streamlight TLR-2 with the red laser aiming unit. This unit upgrades the white light output of the flashlight.
  • Streamlight TLR-2 G – If you are in need of a white light/laser combo for your pistol, take a look at this new rig from Streamlight. It uses a 200 lumen light and a powerfully bright green laser.
  • Streamlight TLR-4 – This is a compact version of the company’s weapon light/laser combo unit. Mine performed exceptionally well, and I wholeheartedly recommend it if you are in the market for such a device.
  • Streamlight TLR-6 – You will not find a more thorough review of this light & laser unit anywhere. I video drop tests, measure heat output and use an illuminating sphere to measure actual light output over time.
  • SureFire G2X Tactical – Although I’ve had bad experiences with the SureFire brand in the past, this light performed exceptionally well. However, there are two main concerns I have with this light that I discuss in the review.
  • ThruNite Archer 1A V3 – For this article, I tested the Archer 1A V3 flashlight. For many people it will do an adequate job, though it does churn through batteries a bit quicker than I would like. However, it survived the impact and submersion tests.
  • UltraFire WF-502B – This flashlight failed. Full stop. I do not recommend this light for any purpose, even at its bargain basement pricing.
  • Wowtac A1S – Unfortunately, this light did not live up to the promises. It failed during testing – as in it completely stopped working.
  • Wowtac A4 V2 – At the time I tested this light, it was the brightest and longest throwing flashlight I had tested. Even though the price was reasonable, some of the issues with it made me wonder if the price was still too high.
  • Wowtac A7 – This is billed as being suitable for tactical use. In my testing, I found it to be questionable for tactical applications and downright dangerous when left in the turbo mode for too long.


Looking for the straight info on a particular gun? Check out our gun reviews below. Every one of these guns we have shot and we give you our honest thoughts on them. Some worked great, others had problems. Read about them before you spend a dime on one.

  • ATI Polymer AR-15 Lower – Want a stripped lower for $50? A complete lower for less than $130? Check out this polymer AR-15 lower from ATI. I did have a few problems with it initially (which I completely show how to fix), but it has been a very good performer.
  • Beretta 1301 Tactical Shotgun Review – I enjoyed shooting and evaluating this scattergun. It was an easy shooting 12 gauge that was completely reliable.
  • Bersa BP40CC – One of three (currently) pistols in company’s BP Concealed Carry series, this handgun is chambered for the .40 S&W, is thin and shoots great. It is not perfect, however, and you should read my evaluation of it before buying.
  • Bersa BP9CC – Impressive is the word that I can use to describe this very slim self-defense handgun from Bersa. This is the first Bersa that I have owned and I am very happy with it.
  • Black Creek Precision 9mm AR Pistol – This Florida based company is making high-end, semi-custom AR rifles and pistols. I take a look at one of their 9mm pistols and discover it is a very nice gun indeed.
  • Charter Arms Off Duty – We review Charter Arm’s take on the hammerless .38 Special revolver. When going head-to-head with the legendary Smith & Wesson 642, this handgun holds its own.
  • CMMG Mk4 PDW Pistol – CMMG offers a pistol AR chambered in 300 BLK. Called the Mk4 PDW pistol, this gun runs perfectly – except for one issue. And this one is a significant one. Definitely read this before buying one.
  • CMMG Mk47 Mutant – Ever thought about running 7.62×39 in your AR, but you don’t want to mess with the unreliable magazines? Check out the Mutant – an AR style rifle that feeds from AK magazines.
  • CZ P-07 Duty – Good quality and a reasonable price best describe this polymer-framed evolution of the CZ 75 pistol. I did find a few flaws that you need to know about before purchase.
  • Dark Storm Industries DS-9 – If you are looking for a 9mm carbine that takes Glock magazines, consider the DS-9. It is an AR-type rifle that is very accurate and well built.
  • Diamondback AM2 – This pistol proved to be a great shooter that ran reliably on 12 different loads including popular self-defense loads.
  • Diamondback DB9 – Small and reliable is what I found the DB9 to be. I’ve heard reports of problems from some others, but not with this one. It does have one drawback that you may not like for self-defense purposes. Read the article if you are thinking about buying one.
  • Diamondback DB9 GEN 4 – This is the updated version of the original DB9. Diamondback took its customers’ suggestions to heart and released this pistol. It is a vast improvement in many ways.
  • Diamondback DB15 pistol – The DB15 line of guns seem to be a good value, balancing price and features. I had a chance to review the pistol version of the gun and was very impressed by it. It is not perfect, but it does seem to be a good buy.
  • DoubleTap pistol – I test drive the DoubleTap pistol in both 9mm and .45 ACP. I was not impressed. It may have a place in someone’s gun roster, but this gun is appropriate for only a very narrow niche.
  • Girsan MC 1911 C T – More than just another 1911, this budget friendly .45 includes a load of nice features plus a red dot optic. However, you may not want to rush out and buy it just yet. Read my review before committing any cash to the deal.
  • Glock Gen4: Evolution, not Revolution – The Gen 4 Glock pistols incorporate some nice new features, including the ability to adjust the grip size. But, if you are happy with a prior generation of Glock, you probably won’t want to upgrade.
  • Glock 17 – The original gun changed the shooting world forever. How does the current version stack up?
  • Glock 42 – The Thin American – Snooty Europeans might look down their nose at the “fat Americans,” but the new single-stack Glock is made in the USA. Oh, it is a lot of fun to shoot as well.
  • Glock 43 – Looking for the most in-depth review of the single stack 9mm Glock? This is it.
  • HK VP9 Review – The latest gun from Heckler & Koch is a winner. This striker-fired, polymer-framed pistol is a true “people’s pistol.”
  • IWI Galil ACE Pistol – IWI brings the pistol version of this battle-tested gun to the US market. It proved to be an exceptional shooter.
  • IWI Tavor SAR – The Tavor rifle is now being imported from Israel and has really captured the attention of the shooters in the US. Aaron had a chance to shoot the carbine and gives us this review.
  • IWI TAVOR X95 – A lot of people – myself included – were eager to see the X95 released in the US market. The wait was worth it as this is a top notch rifle. However, that doesn’t mean it is perfect or a great match for everyone. I take a close look at the pros and cons of this weapon system. Weirdly, I also discover an optic that won’t cut it for self-defense.
  • Kahr CM9 – The CM9 is a subcompact 9mm that uses the famous Kahr trigger. It is designed as a less expensive alternative to other guns in the Kahr line, but it performs just as well.
  • Mossberg 464 SPX – A tactical lever gun seems to be an oxymoron. Nevertheless, a lever action rifle is a viable homestead defense tool. I look at one option from Mossberg.
  • Palmetto State Armory FDE AR-15 – If you are looking for a good “bang for the buck” rifle, the AR-15 carbines from PSA are solid. In this review, I test the company’s FDE model fitted with Magpul furniture.
  • Phase 5 CQC Pistol – Phase 5 is a small AR manufacturer based in California. How does this short barrel AR pistol shake out? Read on and get the details.
  • Plinker Arms .22 AR Pistol – I take the new AR pistol from Plinker Arms for a spin. It is built as a dedicated .22 LR pistol but is still compatible with many typical AR parts. You can swap out the pistol grip or trigger if you like.
  • Remington 783 – Aaron goes hands-on with the new budget hunting rifle from Remington, and comes away impressed. The 783 is a solid gun that could redefine the budget category.
  • Ruger American Compact Review – This pistol may be larger than I would normally like in a supposedly compact handgun, but it is reliable. And accurate. And soft shooting. Maybe it’s not so bad after all…
  • Ruger LCR – Who said the pocket revolver market was stale? The Ruger LCR is an amazing re-imagining of the classic “hammerless” revolver design. It is light and easy recoiling.
  • SIG SAUER 1911 Traditional Ultra Compact – This is one of the most accurate compact pistols I have shot in a long time. I was very impressed by this gun, and I think you will be also. It’s not for everyone, but if you are looking for a compact 1911 style pistol in 9mm, you should check this out.
  • SIG SAUER P224 – Running the new P224 was a lot of fun. The gun shoots easy and was utterly reliable on the range. It is worthy of the name SIG Sauer.
  • SIG SAUER P226 E2 – I don’t know if I can say enough about how great the E2 enhancements are to the SIG P226 pistol. If you like these handguns, you will love the new E2.
  • SIG Sauer P226R – An evolution of the original P226, the P226R adds an accessory rail and the E2 enhancements introduced by the company several years ago. This is a solid combat handgun.
  • SIG Sauer P227 – We had a chance to spend some time on the range with the new SIG P227 pistol. The gun is a clone of the P226, but chambered for the .45 ACP cartridge.
  • SIG Sauer P290RS Enhanced Pistol – This is a premium version of the P290 RS pistols made by SIG. It is a double-action-only handgun with a polymer frame and real sights. We liked this one.
  • Smith & Wesson M&P Bodyguard 380 – We review the current model of Bodyguard 380 and give you the real deal on its high points and faults. Take a look before you buy!
  • Smith & Wesson M&P Core Pistol – We go hands-on with the Smith & Wesson CORE pistol with a Trijicon RMR sight. The new CORE handguns are specially designed for optics.
  • Smith & Wesson M&P Shield 9mm – I take the 9mm version of the Shield for a test drive and wind up buying it. This is the model without the thumb safety, and I cover in great detail why I put down my cash on this pistol.
  • Smith & Wesson Model 610 Review – You might this is a hard-recoiling flamethrower, but it is actually a real pleasure to shoot. But, does a 10mm Auto cartridge in a revolver make sense? Yes it does. I explain why.
  • Smith & Wesson 648 Review – Looking for a top quality .22 Magnum revolver? The Model 648 is the wheelgun you are looking for.
  • Smith & Wesson Model 66 Combat Magnum – I take a pair of Model 66-8 revolvers to the range and have a blast. I love a good revolver, and these tick almost all of the boxes. Almost.
  • Smith & Wesson Performance Center M&P380 Shield EZ – This wound up being one of the better guns I have reviewed in a while. It was easy shooting and looked good. At less than $500 (street price,) it is one of the better deals right now.
  • Smith & Wesson SD40 – The SD40 is possibly the best value in a home defense pistol. The gun runs flawlessly, feels great in the hand, and is very affordable. I don’t know how S&W can make such a great gun at such a great price.
  • Springfield Armory Echelon Review – Another great pistol is available to shooters across the country. Its name is Echelon, and it impressed me with its features and capabilities.
  • Springfield Armory Hellcat Pro Review – The latest Croatian power pistol is a real winner! I love the size of this, and it shoots great. For me, it is the perfect size of defensive handgun.
  • Springfield Armory SA-35 Review – A modern take on the Browning Hi Power, this is one of my favorite pistol releases in the past 10 years. The gun is a real shooter!
  • Springfield XD9 Subcompact – Take a look at our review of the updated subcompact pistol from the company’s Legacy line of handguns. It packs in 13 rounds (more with an extended magazine) for about $300. Nice!
  • Springfield XD-S 45 – This is the original XD-S pistol and is chambered in the big-bore .45 ACP cartridge. Aaron goes hands-on with the gun and talks to Rob Letham about this little pistol.
  • Springfield XDS 9mm – Springfield Armory expanded the XDS line of pistols with this 9mm subcompact. The handling is great, the recoil light and it fits all of the holsters already made for the existing XDS .45 pistol.
  • STI Escort – STI International builds highly regarded 1911 pistols for competition and self-defense. I take the Escort, a compact 1911, for a test drive. You may be surprised by what I found.
  • T/C Venture Compact Rifle – Aaron takes a shot at the T/C Venture Compact rifle in this review. Bottom line: it performs very well and has some great features.
  • Taurus 709 SLIM – I’ve always read about Taurus having good customer service, but my experience was not good after I had to send this gun back for repairs just to get through the testing. Don’t buy until you read this review.
  • Taurus 740 SLIM – A tiny gun chambered for the high-pressure .40 S&W cartridge. That’s a lot of bang in a small package, but is there much bang for the buck in this subcompact pistol? You want to read this before buying one.
  • Taurus 905 Review: 9mm Revolver – Revolvers for rimless calibers are somewhat unusual, but they tend to have a tight group of enthusiasts. Is the 905 worthy of a following? We take a close look at this Taurus revolver.
  • Taurus Spectrum – I had high hopes for this .380 pistol. Alas, my hopes were dashed on the shoals of reality when I took this gun to the range. Even after a trip back to the manufacturer, it simply was not reliable.
  • Walther PPS – This single-stack, striker-fired pistol was a fantastic shooter. Yet, it had a single issue that prevents me from using it for self-defense. Please read this review if you are thinking about buying the gun.
  • Walther PPS M2 – Walther updated the PPS pistol and might have turned it into the absolutely best handgun for concealed carry.
  • Wilson Combat WCP320 Carry – Possibly the best striker-fired pistol I’ve ever shot, the new WCP320 Carry is an amazing handgun. It offers top tier accuracy and complete reliability. I highly recommend this one.
  • Winchester Model 1873 – The classic Model 1873 lever gun from Winchester is back and Aaron reviews it. Not only is it a good shooter, it is a beautiful rifle.


If you carry a gun for self-defense, having a quality holster is an absolute necessity. A cheap scabbard that fails to secure your weapon can be worse than having no weapon at all.

  • Alien Gear Cloak Tuck 2.0 – In this article, I evaluate the Cloak Tuck 2.0 holster from Alien Gear. With a no-BS lifetime warranty, aggressive price and extreme comfort, I wouldn’t be surprised to find this becoming one of the most popular holsters used for concealed carry today.
  • Beretta APX Holster List – The APX is the newest duty-sized handgun from Beretta. I have put together a list of carry rigs that will work with this gun here. As the choices increase, the list will expand ton include them all.
  • Beretta Nano Holsters – I have put together a complete list of holsters that are available for the Beretta Nano. My thoughts on each model are included.
  • Bersa BP9CC Holsters – Another one of my somewhat famous lists of holsters for a particular model of gun. This one is for the BP9CC. Note that it also covers the BP40CC and BP380CC guns.
  • Bianchi Model 7 Shadow II Holster – This is a leather, belt-slide holster with a thumb break. The leather is a rich color and has worn very well. Best part: the reasonable price.
  • Black Arch Protos M Holster – This IWB, hybrid holster uses an interesting design that moves it directly to our recommended category. Read the article to see how this beats other hybrid rigs in several ways.
  • Blue Ridge Holsters Camo Hybrid – If you need a quality concealed carry holster that is still affordable and made right here in the USA by a small business, read this review. The Blue Ridge holsters might be just what you are looking for.
  • Blackhawk A.R.C. Holster – I review a pair of the new ARC holsters: one for the Glock 43 and the other for the Smith & Wesson M&P Shield. Both of the holster performed exceptionally well, garnering the ARC the first five-star review for holsters on the GHG site.
  • Bravo Concealment ACER DG2 – This is a fantastic IWB holster that impressed me with its high-quality and overall design.
  • Dara Holsters – I reviewed a pair of rigs from Dara Holsters & Gear: the IWB and OWB custom rigs. These all Kydex holsters are top notch and offer a good value.
  • DeSantis Nemesis Pocket Holster – The DeSantis Nemesis is probably one of the most popular synthetic pocket holsters on the market. It has been through several design changes, and this single article includes reviews of past and current production holsters.
  • Diamondback AM2 Holster List – If you own a Diamondback AM2, this is the page for you. I’ve scoured the internet looking for all of the carry rigs being made for the AM2 and compiled them into a single list here. I offer my thoughts on the designs including the ones I’ve already tested.
  • Galco Summer Comfort Holster – The Summer Comfort holster is an inside-the-waistband holster from Galco. We take one for a test drive using a Glock 19 pistol.
  • Glock 19 Holster List – I put together a huge list of holsters that are available for the Glock 19. Since I’ve been carrying a G19 for more than 20 years, I did a mini-review on many of the listed rigs and let you know what works – and what doesn’t.
  • Glock 42 Holster List – I’ve assembled the most comprehensive list of holsters for the Glock 42 pistol here. There is feedback from actual users to help you make a good decision based on your needs.
  • Glock 43 Holster List – Another one of my resource articles, this is a complete rundown of the carry rigs currently available for the Glock 43 pistol. More are being added all the time, and I actively seek suggestions from you to help complete it.
  • HK VP9 Holster List – Similar to some of the other holster lists above, this is a rundown of all of the rigs available for the striker-fired VP9 from Heckler & Koch.
  • HK VP40 Carry Rig List – As you might have guessed, the VP40 will not fit into scabbards made for the VP9. So, I’ve put together a list dedicated to the .40 caliber version of this handgun. Let me know if you know of something I’ve missed.
  • Kholster IWB Concealment Holster – The Kholster is a tuckable, inside-the-waistband holster with a leather backer and Kydex scabbard. While not perfect, this holster did a good job and is affordable.
  • Mossberg MC1sc Holster List – The compact 9mm pistol from Mossberg is developing a solid group of fans. They need holsters and we’ve compiled a list of the best rigs here.
  • Naroh Arm N1 Holster List – Naroh is now offering a 9mm compact pistol. I’ve assembled a list of the holsters currently being made for this gun.
  • Phalanx Stealth Operator Holster – Sadly, I cannot recommend this carry rig. However, it is worth reading the article to understand why. It may work for some people.
  • Remington R51 Holsters – I’ve put together a list of holster available for the modern R51 pistol. Let’s hope Remington can get this pistol right.
  • Remington RM380 Holster List – I’ve put together a list of all of the available carry rigs for the little .380 ACP Remington.
  • RKBA Holsters – RKBA is making high-quality leather holsters, and we take a look at two of them we recently ordered. You probably want to read this before spending any money on a CCW holster.
  • Ruger-57 Holster List – Have a Ruger-57 and need a carry rig for it? Let us help with our round up of rigs that are available right now.
  • Ruger American Pistol – This is a comprehensive list of all carry rigs for the American Pistol.
  • Ruger SR9c Holsters – A comprehensive round-up of scabbards for the Ruger SR9c pistol. We’ve got all kinds of holsters listed for this gun and where you can get them.
  • Safariland 578 GLS Pro-Fit – I got a chance to run one of the first available 578 holsters from Safariland. I was very impressed by it. At the time of this writing, it will fit more than 170 different guns.
  • SIG Sauer P250 Holsters – Looking for a SIG P250 holster? This list was made for you. Our thoughts on each of the models.
  • Smith & Wesson M&P Shield Holster List – This is another one of my comprehensive holster lists. I offer insights into some of the different rigs that are on the market for the Shield.
  • Tagua Gunleather Holster – These imported leather holsters can be found for relatively cheap prices in many gun stores. But, are they worth the price? Although not perfect, they seem to be a good value.
  • Uncle Mike’s Kydex Holster – Uncle Mike’s made their business in nylon gear, but they have since branched out into Kydex. These holsters are priced affordably and widely available.
  • Walther CCP Holster List – This is another one of my holster lists to help you make a decision about what kind of rig to buy for your CCP. These handguns have some unique carrying aspects and not all holsters are made to fit them.
  • Walther PK380 Holsters – If you own a PK380, I’ve got your list of holsters. Get my take on all of these scabbards.
  • YetiTac – I take a look at the FireSide and Quick Claw holsters. The Quick Claw is nice, but I really like the FireSide.


A quality blade can be a good everyday tool or a lifesaver in an emergency. From survival knives to fighting folders, we give you our thoughts on these cutting tools.

  • Bear Grylls Ultimate Survival Knife – Bear Grylls is known for being a rugged outdoorsman and an expert in wilderness survival. Does the blade bearing his name live up to his reputation?
  • BLACKHAWK! Be-Wharned Knife – The Be-Wharned knife proved to be incredibly sharp and durable. It is a Michael Janich design and is a wicked fighting folder.
  • Browning Black Label Shadowfax Knife – Aaron takes a look at this premium, fixed-blade knife.
  • CRKT Foresight Knife – Aaron takes a look at a Ken Onion designed knife in this essential gun gear review. You’ve got to have a good blade (or three) to handle any number of chores throughout the day.
  • Gerber Swagger Knife – This is one of the many knife reviews we have done at Gerber is an old name in the industry, and this knife illustrates why they have been around for a long time.
  • Kershaw Asset Knife – Kershaw is making a lot of quality knives at affordable price points. The Asset is one of those knives. I like the Compound (below) a little better, but this is still a quality knife.
  • Kershaw Compound Knife – This is an incredibly good value for a folding knife. Lots of photos in this Kershaw review. For what it is worth, this one is my daily work knife. It has held up great.
  • Smith & Wesson ExtremeOps CK5TBS Knife – How does this inexpensive folder stand up? Can it take a beating and still be relied on? We take a hard look.

Survival Gear

This is a list of all of the survival gear we have reviewed at GHG. We are making an effort to drastically expand this section in the coming months.

  • ASAP Survival Sidekick Bug Out Bag – Need a pre-made BOB? The ASAP Survival Sidekick is worth considering. Lots of photos and details on the contents. It is not perfect, but it is a good base.
  • Cool Survival Tools, Gear & Equipment – Some of the cutting edge survival gear that you can carry with you when you head out to the woods.
  • CRKT Eat’n Tool – This lightweight and handy tool is the perfect addition to anyone’s hunting or camping pack. It also makes an excellent addition to a bug out bag.
  • CRKT Parasaw – An overview of the new survival tool from CRKT. It is a paracord bracelet with a wire saw wound into the cordage.
  • Midland E+Ready ER310 Weather Radio – This is an emergency weather radio that runs on a solar panel and crank generator. It can be used to charge other electronic devices via a USB output. Plus it has a flashlight, AM/FM radio and more.
  • MTM Case-Gard Survivor Ammo Can – If you have thought about burying some gear or supplies for use at a later date, you want to take a look at the Survivor Ammo Can from MTM. This can is designed to be buried for a long period of time and protect the contents from moisture. I put together a video showing you how this can assembles. Then I dig a hole and drop it in. We will dig it up later and see how it did. For now, check out how this thing goes together.
  • Personal Locator Beacon Round Up – I take a look at some of the portable rescue beacons that are on the market. If you are a hunter or outdoorsman, one of these should be considered mandatory.
  • Siberian Coolers Classic 45 QT – In the world of ultra-efficient ice chests, there are many choices. One of the better ones to consider is the Classic line from Siberian Coolers. This is my evaluation of the 45-quart model.
  • Streamlight EPU-5200 – Keeping your cell phone charged may mean the difference between a call for help and being stranded on your own. This portable power pack is suited for outdoor use and is pretty darn rugged.

Other Gun Gear Reviews

These are reviews all of the shooting and outdoor related gear not listed in one of the above categories. Some of these items will be moved into separate eventually, but for now you can find them all right here.

  • 5.11 Gun Belt – If you carry a gun, you need a holster. Just as importantly you need a quality gun belt to hold that gun and holster in place. Fortunately, 5.11 has a quality line of gun belts that are affordable.
  • Apex Action Enhancement Trigger for the Springfield Hellcat – This is a trigger upgrade kit that takes less than an hour to install and fixes the trigger binding issue on the Hellcat pistol.
  • ESS Guardian EDC Backpack – I’ve not found a better every day carry backpack that this one from Elite Survival Systems. It is absolutely the best I’ve tried to date.
  • ESS Stealth SBR Backpack – If you need a discreet bag or case for your short barrel rifle or large pistol, Elite Survival Systems has a great option. I reviewed this pack and found it to be exceptional for its purpose. But, there is a size issue that you should understand prior to purchasing.
  • Field & Stream HydroProof ULTRA – Aaron hits the woods for some bow hunting with his HydroProof ULTRA gear. How did it perform? Check this article out before spending any more money on hunting clothing.
  • Gripwell Review for the AR-15 – Want a better way to hold on to the mag well of your AR? Take a look at the Gripwell.
  • Glock 42 Night Sights Resource List – This is our ultimate guide to aftermarket sights for the G42.
  • Glock 43 Night Sights List – If you are looking to upgrade the sights on your new G43, I’ve put together a list of sight options that will work for you.
  • Glock 43X Optics – If you want to add a red dot sight to your G43X, this list will show you everything that is currently available plus give you my recommendations for what is the best.
  • Hornady Rapid Safe – The Rapid Safe is a pistol lock box with multiple quick access options. I tested one and you can see what I found.
  • Leupold Mark AR 1.5-4×20 Scope – Field test and evaluation of the Leupold Mark AR Mod 1 rifle scopes. These optics are a great addition to any AR being used for hunting or precision shooting.
  • Magpul iPhone 5 Field Case – Inexpensive, lightweight, tactical looking and available in colors from pink to flat dark earth…what’s not to like?
  • Magpul PMAG – We take a quick look at the 30 round AR-15 magazines from Magpul. We found them to be excellent mags and worked great in our guns.
  • Mantis X2 Review – This is an amazing dry fire training system that ups your practice game without costing a lot of money.
  • RCBS Rotary Case Media Separator – I review the rotary case-media separator from RCBS. This manually powered unit does an excellent job of separating tumbling media from your brass. I like mine a lot.
  • Remington RF-05 Hunting Boots– If you are looking for a waterproof, leather hunting boot good for all weather conditions, take a look at these Remington boots. We found them to be durable and comfortable.
  • SIG SAUER KILO850 Rangefinder – For the price, I’ve not found a better rangefinder than the KILO850. I recommend it. If you are in need of a rangefinder that is reasonably priced (well under $200), check out this review.
  • Springfield Armory XD-S Night Sights – Our comprehensive resource page on all of the night sights available for the XDS today.
  • Springfield Hellcat Optics Roundup – This is our complete list of red dot reflex sights for the Hellcat pistol.
  • Tango Down ARC-L Magazine – Tango Down is making polymer AR-15 magazines that are a one-piece design. This is said to improve feeding through the use of shapes not available from magazines that can be disassembled.
  • Tapco AR-15 Polymer Magazine – We take a look at these inexpensive, polymer AR-15 magazines from Tapco.
  • Trijicon MRO – I take the new Miniature Rifle Optic for a spin on a wide range of rifles to test it out. It worked extremely well and I highly recommend you read the review.
  • Walther PPS Sights – A look at the aftermarket night sights and lasers available for the PPS pistol.
Golani Rifle Review

If there is a gun or some piece of kit that you would like to see reviewed, let us know! The writers here are always looking to provide you with information that can benefit you. So, if there is something you want to see, sound off!