Saturday, March 28, 2015

Crossroads of the West - Costa Mesa

BLK RFL DIV is currently at the Crossroads of the West gun show in Costa Mesa from March 28-29. We are set up in the Anaheim Hall next to the Shooters Zoo crew.

If you plan to attend, please stop on by and you'll find some great deals. 

Final notes: And the exhibition hall has AC! This may not mean much to many still experience Old Man Winter's wrath, but in SoCal it's been blazing hot with summertime weather.

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Banana Clip T-Shirt Restocked!

All larges and XLs in Cardinal and Charcoal of the Banana Clip t-shirt have been restocked. Here's the link to the store: Banana Clipazine or click on the BRD store link button on the right side of the page >

[Photo courtesy of dirty6882bird]

All domestic orders are also still getting free shipping. That was supposed to only last a month, but what the hell, let's keep it going. Thanks for all the support!

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

7.62x39mm Shootout

Note: I had originally attempted to document POA/POI at 100yds for the 7.62x39mm shootout, but was dealing with substantial variance between the different ammo types to where I could not photograph some of the groups for comparison. Therefore, I decided to pull my targets in closer and set them up at 50yds for this informal test.
[Click on images to enlarge]

The shoot was conducted on a sunny, spring day with a high of 75ยบ F and a light crosswind, nothing that would affect the accuracy, especially at 50yds. Firearm used for this test was a Romanian DRACO, which has an 11.5" barrel, with a Bushnell TRS-25 red dot in the prone position off my rangebag. Firearm was cleaned prior to shoot and no cleaning was done during the shoot. Because of my limited time, I decided to run 5 shots per cartridge type and used 7" circular reactive targets placed at 50yds. The 5 shots were taken in succession usually all within 1min, then a 3-4min cooldown while I reloaded the mag for the next brand/target.

7.62x39mm ammo used: Red Army Standard, Red Army Elite, Wolf "Yellow Box",  Wolf Polyformance, Wolf Military Classic, Tula / Herter's, Silver Bear, Fiocchi, Golden Tiger, Prvi Partizan, Arsenal, Hornady SST, and some Yugo milsurp (not pictured above).


I set up my baseline zero with Wolf Polyformance 123gr FMJ. Why Wolf? I decided to use a common brand and cartridge, one that most AK owners would have readily available. The red dot was originally zeroed at 25yds and was ~2" high at 50yds, a few clicks brought down my elevation and I was GTG. 

[1] Red Army Copper Jacketed Elite 123gr FMJ

After zeroing, I loaded up a mag with 5 rounds of RA Elite. 1st shot went far left and the rest fell in to create an ugly first group... a very ugly first group.

[2] Yugo M67 123gr Ball (Headstamp NK 1970)

Very far left, no wonder I couldn't get this on paper at 100yds. 3"s over at 50yds will be a lot further off at 100yds. 1st cold bore shot was off paper under the horizontal centerline to the left.

[3] Wolf Polyformance 123gr FMJ

Wolf Poly, dropped a little from my original zero, my NPOA was obviously slightly off or maybe it was the color of my rangebag, got to blame something.

 [4] Tula 122gr FMJ (Herter's)

Unsure if that top left hole was the 1st cold bore shot or not as I did not confirm it. 

[5] Wolf Military Classic 124gr HP

Wolf Mil Classic, I'm liking what I see. 5 shots, decent group, no flyers, I'll take it.

 [6] Wolf "Yellow Box" 122gr HP

Wolf Yellow Box was terrible when I shot it at 100yds and it was all over the place at 50yds. 

[7] Arsenal 122gr FMJ

Cold bore shot was bottom left, then grouped nicely to the left. I reconfirmed my cold bore shot with the 6th shot, striking right above the bullseye, yet the variance in elevation on the cold bore left me somewhat perplexed. I moved on.

[8] Silver Bear 123gr FMJ

I think I could have done better here. My NPOA (natural point of aim) was slightly off, thus that horizontal string.

[9] Golden Tiger 124gr FMJBT

Golden Tiger, I'll take it, not a bad group.

[10] Prvi Partizan 123gr SP

Prvi soft points, again, wow, bottom wayyy left. 3 shots on paper, 2 shots off.

[11] Fiocchi 123gr FMJ

Fiocchi, not what I expected to see. I will repeat this one and reconfirm, because that is worse than Wolf Yellow Box... just all over the place.

[12] Hornady 123gr SST

1st "cold bore" shot is bottom right, then the rest of the shots grouped nicely in the center.

[13] Red Army Standard 123gr FMJ

Not much different from RA Elite. However, I believe the 5th round went off paper to the left, just above the center horizontal line, probably a flyer due to shooter error. I want to say all 5 shots were on paper though, 2 in the bottom left hole, but that far left hole off paper has me second guessing myself, so I'll call it 4 on paper and 1 wild flyer to the left.

Final notes. This was a fun and QUICK shootout to compare the variance in POA vs POI. That was actually a big con to this test though, as it was definitely quick & I didn't settle into some of my targets as well as I should have. I would love to see others run an informal test, so please post your results. Get a good bench rest while you are at it, too, that will help significantly.

Lastly, with all this different ammo being run I had no FTFs, no malfunctions, nada. Love my AKs.

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Aervoe Rattle Can Paintjobs

I'm a big fan of Aervoe rattle can paint and have touched on it's use in a few of my past posts. I have used it on many components; from gas tubes, to barrels, to rails, to entire firearms.  Aervoe is not resistant to scratches and continual wear, it doesn't claim to be, but it is durable, it is very easy to use, inexpensive, and readily available (I get it from DSG Arms located in TX). Additionally, it dries... dry, none of that residual tackiness I've experienced with other rattle can paints. To put down an effective coat one just has to follow a few basic steps, key being prepping the items to be painted correctly and an awareness of outside temperatures.

I recently got some parts in for one of my latest mods that I wanted to rattle can, a perfect time to do a post about it. Pictured above, the castle nut & Ace Pignose Adapter needed a different look. But before I apply the Coyote Tan Aervoe, I need to get the parts prepped.

[1] Prep

You've got to degrease your parts, whether it's factory grease, cosmoline, or your greasy mitt prints, get that stuff off! If you already have a degreasing regiment, use it. For these parts, I used GUNK Non-Chlorinated Brake Cleaner. GUNK does leave residue and I use boiling hot water to wash it off, thus the gritty garage kettle pictured to the left. Additionally, you do not want to use this stuff in an enclosed area, outside is ideal. Denatured alcohol does a good job too, especially for polymer parts, where you do not want to use GUNK. However, I have used GUNK on polymer parts, even though the can does warn against usage on such parts. 

After degreasing and drying off the parts, tape off the areas you don't want to paint. Use gloves or avoid handling the prepped areas, don't undo the work you just did by getting them greasy again. Blue painter's tape works adequately. For the interior of receivers, I stuff them with paper towels and then mask off with painter's tape. 

The parts I'm working on are on hooks made from coat hangers, nothing special. From prep to painting to drying, the parts stayed on these hooks and I didn't remove them until they were completely dry and ready for installation.

[2] Application

Place the parts in the sun once you're ready to paint. Temperature is an important part of the curing process, it needs to be warm and right now in Southern California it has been in the 80s and low 90s, more than adequate. Put the rattle can in the sun as well before starting and get everything nice and warmed up as it really helps with the flow of paint & the curing process.

Be sure to shake the hell out of that Aervoe can, make sure the marble inside the can is moving freely. Test spray on some paper or something else, then apply to parts. 

Do not go heavy, get a light layer on and let it dry, then reapply. It's better to go slow than oversaturate and end up with drips & runs. I will usually hit a part 2-4 times in the first hour, leave it out in the sun "baking" all day, and then wait 24hrs before I touch it or before I reapply an additional coat. Whether it's a receiver or castle nut, my routine stays the same; apply Aervoe to the part lightly, layering the paint by hitting the part several times within the first hour, allow part to dry for the next 24hrs +, reapply paint, and allow to dry for an additional 24hrs+, allowing the part to get as much sun exposure or heat as possible.

[3] Result

After completely drying for 24hrs+, I will wipe down the part(s) with CLP lube to give it a nice lustre. This is by no means a requirement, simply something I do. As pictured, it matches up very well.

Final notes. It's inexpensive, it's durable if applied correctly, it has an excellent finish, you can do it yourself, and... it's inexpensive.