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    Black Variable H-Mag

    Previously, Black Variable, formerly known as Sticky Labs, sent us a link to their video teaser for an upcoming product. Yesterday, they finally did a full reveal, showing the Black Variable H-Mag, Modular GBB Airsoft Magazine Adapter System, allowing any airsoft player to use an AEG magazine with a Gas Blowback Rifle.

    But first, let’s hear it from them:

    The H-Mag is a magazine adapter system for gas-blowback (GBB) Airsoft replicas that was developed in order to circumvent several of the drawbacks of GBB platforms, all while providing an easy-to-use, drop-in solution using high pressure air (HPA). Using a combination of off-the-shelf and custom-designed parts, the H-Mag is user serviceable; having a broken part does not mean the entire system has to be thrown out.

    While currently compatible with WE-Tech M4-style platforms, its modularity means the H-Mag can see use in other platforms and brands of GBBRs.

    First things first, just to clarify what the H-Mag does. It allows you to use a Gas Blowback Rifle to be powered with HPA and use a higher capacity magazine in the form of AEG Magazines. As it is a magazine adapter, you can use low cap AEG mags up to the drum magazines that can carry over a thousand BBs.  Now that’s firepower for you and you are just limited with your HPA source and the number of AEG mags that you carry.

    Black Variable designed H-Mag to get the best of both worlds for airsoft players --- use AEG magazines which are cheaper and more abundant than gas magazines, apart from having higher capacity to carry BBs, and as Black Variable puts it, “Get the tactile feedback and the crisp sounds that a GBBR provides while still being able to reload and change magazines.”

    The H-Mag is also modular, as it allows to you use other AEG magazine brands, or use it in another airsoft gun type such as the GHK RPK or the WE AK GBB.
    The caveat, you will still need a rig to power the GBB-R and that means a line to an external tank. For airsoft players that do not want their airsoft guns tethered to an external power source, this is a let down.

    Interested? You still need to wait for it to be funded as right now, Black Variable is raising funds for the H-Mag on Indiegogo. Their funding goal is modest, just US$600 which we think is achievable. If you want to back it, then better pledge an amount so that it can finally be brought to mass production.


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    Nemesis Arms Vanquish

    Ares Airsoft have released a new airsoft sniper rifle that can be easily disassembled and stored away easily. The Ares Airsoft MSR-WR is a spring powered Bolt Action airsoft sniper that allows for tool less assembly and takedown. You can easily stow it away after an airsoft game and you do not need a long case for it.

    Here is what the Ares Airsoft website says about the MSR-WR:

    "MSR-WR is the latest spring power (bolt action) airsoft of ARES. The cutting edge feeding system improves the overall mechanism, which allows MSR-WR to have a trim and neat body for better mobility. From now on, bringing heavy equipment to the field is not the only option for airsoft snipers. With tool-less assemble and take down system of MSR-WR, everything you need are stored in a small tactical case."

    Sounds good? An airsoft rifle that can be easily stowed away in a small case.

    However, we received a letter from the CEO of Nemesis Arms, David Ives, sent via email by his wife and Vice-President, Kathleen Ives, starting that the Ares Airsoft MSR-WR is an unauthorised airsoft replica of their Vanquish Rifle:

    To whom it may concern,

    My name is David Ives of Nemesis Arms.  My wife and I own and have operated our small company for many years.  We have designed and manufacture the finest take down sniper rifles, named the Vanquish and others similar models.  We work hard and pride ourselves in the firearms industry.  Our Vanquish model is used and well respected in many professional agencies.  It has come to our attention that Ares airsoft of Hong Kong has produced our Vanquish rifle with no regard of respect to our intellectual property.

    We do not condone this action and we would like to bring this matter to the public attention.

    Thank you for understanding.

    David Ives
    President
    Nemesis Arms, Inc.

    The Nemesis Arms Vanquish is not exactly an obscure product as it is used in some of Hollywood movies and TV series such as Bourne Legacy, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., Daredevil, and Hawaii Five-O. Other than the name difference, it is unmistakable that Ares Airsoft MSR-WR is based on the Vanquish.

    We asked Mrs. Ives if they have ever been in discussions with Ares Airsoft with regards to taking a license but they not replied. We also sent an email to Ares Airsoft last Wednesday for what they have to say about this issue, but as of this writing they have not replied.

    It is a problem in the airsoft industry where airsoft manufacturers tend to take liberties on manufacturing airsoft replicas of real world weapon designs without taking a licence.  We do not know if Nemesis Arms have a design patent on the Vanquish though it is said to be a take down rifle built from a small action version of the .50 EDM Arms Windrunner M96 according to IMDB. If not a design patent, they should have a “trade dress” protection of the Vanquish if it is recognised as associated with the company producing them.

    Bigger companies can perhaps shrug off such unauthorised replication as it may not affect their bottomlines or use their lawyers to fend off such attempts, but for the smaller companies, it can affect them as they can lose potential revenues from the sale of unlicensed airsoft replicas.

    Oh well, the intellectual property battles between firearms makers and airsoft manufacturers continue with no end in sight.

     

    Top Photo: Nemesis Arms Vanquish (Source: Nemesis Arms)


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    GoPro Hero (2018)

    With the proliferation of new action cameras from the biggest consumer electronics companies in the world and very capable knock-offs from China, GoPro is trying to fend off the competition to make sure it maintains its leadership in the action camera market. For 2018, it decided to come out with an entry level camera that is the most affordable in the GoPro lineup and still got some of the features of its high-end siblings.

    It’s called the Hero, with no number after it, and it is priced at US$199.00.

    It is not the same as the GoPro Session as it looks the same as the flagship action cams of GoPro such as the Hero6 and Hero5. For the budget conscious airsoft players wanting to won a GoPro action camera, the Hero can be easily mistaken for the expensive versions, and it comes with an LCD screen at the rear just like the Hero5 and 6. The Session does not have an LCD screen.

    So at a price of US$199, what does the Hero have to offer? The camera does video capture at a resolution of 1440 at 60 frames per second and 1080 and 60 frames per second. As for still photos, it captures them at 10MP. Other features are voice control, electronic video stabilization, 2-inch display and it is waterproof up to 10 meters or 30 feet. As for mounting, it is compatible with all GoPro HERO mounting accessories available on the market right now.

    Too bad it does not do 4K which is available in the higher end GoPros, but if you mainly upload 1080p HD videos on YouTube for your audience to appreciate your gameplay footages, then the GoPro Hero will do the job adequately for you.

    The GoPro Hero is now available at retailers. Press release below:

    $199 HERO Joins $299 HERO5 and $399 HERO6, Making GoPro Accessible to All

    GoPro, Inc. has added a new HERO camera to the family. On sale now, HERO is a $199, go-anywhere, capture-anything camera that makes it easy to share experiences that would be difficult to capture with a phone.

    HERO features a 2-inch touch display, is waterproof to 30 feet and is extremely durable, making it the perfect GoPro for kids, adventurous social sharers and travelers.

    “HERO is a great first GoPro for people looking to share experiences beyond what a phone can capture,” says Meghan Laffey, GoPro’s SVP of Product. “HERO makes it easy to share ‘wow’ moments at a price that’s perfect for first-time users.”

    Sharing cool experiences with HERO is simple. It offloads your photos and videos to the GoPro app which creates fun, shareable videos for you, automatically. No more fumbling with your SD card or plugging your camera into a computer. HERO makes it simple.

    Those looking for the ultimate GoPro-experience can subscribe to GoPro’s PLUS subscription service. Cloud backup, damaged camera replacement, 20-percent off accessory discounts and more are included with a PLUS subscription for just $4.99 a month, cancellable anytime.

    HERO is available today at retailers around the world and on GoPro.com. Key features include:

    • Award-Winning Image Quality: HD Video (1440p60 and 1080p60) and 10MP photo performance
    • 2-Inch Touch Display: Using HERO is as easy as using your phone thanks to its touch display
    • Voice Control: Tell HERO to start and stop recording, take a photo, turn off and more
    • Waterproof + Extremely Durable: Waterproof up to 30’ (10M) and designed go everywhere your smartphone can’t
    • Video Stabilization: HERO features video stabilization that helps smooth out the shakes
    • Smartphone Compatible: HERO offloads your photos and videos to the GoPro app which creates fun, shareable videos for you, automatically
    • Body and Gear Mountable: compatible with 30+ GoPro mounting accessories

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    USMC Flickr Photo

    The U.S. Marine Snipers are finally getting what they have been clamoring for, a sniper rifle that fires at longer ranges than their existing M40 sniper rifles. According to the Marine Corps Times, the sniper teams will soon be receiving the MK 13 Mod 7 Sniper Rifle.

    Marine snipers have been carrying a variant of the M40 sniper rifle since the Vietnam War with the latest iteration being the M40A6.  The M40 is based on the Remington M700 Bolt Action Rifle.

    Photo: Marine Sniper Team with the M40A5 (DoD photo by Lance Cpl. Joey S. Holeman Jr., U.S. Marine Corps/Released)

    Former snipers have been complaining that the M40’s 1,000 yard range is not enough in engagements in conflicts such as in Afghanistan and Iraq. With the MK13, it goes beyond 1,000 yard with the .300 Winchester Magnum (WinMag) round.

    It may not outrange the U.S. Army’s 1,300 yard M2010 Enhanced Sniper Rifle nor the USSOCOM’s 1,600 yard Precision Sniper Rifle, but it is an improvement over the M40 rifle.

    The U.S. Marine Corps has been working on improving their capabilities of the Marines in terms of hand carried weapons, starting with the M27 IAR and its DMR version, the M38. The Corps asked for US$4.3 million this year to purchase the rifle to start equipping the sniper teams. While the MK 13 Mod 7 should bring even more capabilities to the Marine sniper teams, there is one device that excites them more than the rifle itself according to the Marine Corps Times story. Pictures from the Josaphat Orozco photography that show Marines firing the Mk 13 with the Nightforce ATACR scope.

    Photo: NightForce ATACR (Source: NightForce)

    The Nightforce ATACR or Advanced Tactical Riflescope can easily withstand the recoil of the .300 WinMag and other big rounds. The scope is relative young but has been getting raves from shooters. Nightforce says the ATACR uses their proprietary optical prescription in a built-like-a-tank housing and that every ATACR riflescope delivers benchrest precision even under harshest conditions.

    The U.S. Marine Corps plans to purchase 356 MK 13 Mod 7 Sniper Rifles.

     

    Top Photo:U.S. Marine Snipeer Team (Source: USMC Flickr)


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    Enimime

    Yesterday in our inbox, was an email from idea3Di, an Italian design group base in Rome. Their email is about their latest Indiegogo crowdfunding project that looks like an interesting device to use in airsoft games. Called the Enimine, they say it is the first airsoft bouncing mine system.

    According to the idea3Di, there are a lot of not-working or unrealistic mines are available on the market with most work by a pressure trigger and that there cannot be any chance to hit the target with a single mine in a vast playground. Their idea of Enimine, a bouncing land mine for airsoft, with remote trigger by a microwave radar and has total coverage of a perimeter of about 10 metres.

    The Enimine is comprised of the bouncing mine, launch base and the RF remote. The microwave radar can be activated with an RF remote and can detect movements of up to 10 metres from any direction and detonates, bouncing the mine in the air expelling BBs in all directions using gas as a propellant up to a 7 metre radius. The mine is also resusable. It can also be deactivated with the RF remote.

    It can be buried up to 3/4ths of its body (mainly the launch base) and powered by rechargeable 7.4v Lipoly battery. Since a part of it is exposed which is mainly the bouncing mine, you can cover it with leaves so it won’t get spotted by the OPFOR.

    The whole unit is mainly made of ABS with the bouncing mine made of aluminium with foam coating which acts as a shock absorber to prevent dents to the body of the bouncing mine. It is refillable with gas and has a capacity of 92 BBs at the maximum.

    The ABS launch base us comprised of a trigger system, a servo motor, an electronic board, a battery, and a spring system. The release mechanism is composed of two steel levers enclosed in an aluminium box, and such a combination will allow high reliability and durability over time. The levers are operated by a servo motor. The piston, under which a compression spring is located, is also made of ABS. An aluminum pin which is screwed to the piston is fitted to the "trigger system" by keeping the spring pressed.

    An electrical impulse is supplied to the servo motor by the electronic board, the brain of Enimine and manages all of the electrical components of the system.

    To operate the Enimine, mount the battery and turn the launch base on in which an acoustic signal will indicate it is powered on and on standby. Load the 4 cavities of the bouncing mine with BBs using a speedloader and then press it the bouncing mine into the launch base until it locks into place. With the done, fill the bouncing mine with gas for 3 to 4 seconds. Activate it with the RF and you’re all set, the Enimine will take care of the rest.

    There are sounds to indicate if the mine is activated or not, for search function as well as for low battery warning.

    idea3Di are raising €40,000 for the Enimine project with a month to go. We don’t know if the amount they are aiming for is a tall order for airsoft crowdfunding as it has been tough for airsoft projects to raise the amounts they need via crowdfunding. But the team has a track record of meeting a funding goal, as they raised almost half a million US dollars for their eco-friendly ice cooling device called Geizeer before.

    If you are interested in getting an Enimine, the funding pledges start at €119 which is 35% off the planned retail price of the product when it gets released. The designers are looking into November 2018 for delivering the finished product to their backers worldwide.


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    GunVideo.com

    With many owners of firearms-related YouTube channels worried if their channel or their videos will be suspended or deleted by the world’s largest online video sharing platform in the world, some have taken action to ensure that their videos are available online by moving to other popular video sharing platforms (like aherm… Pornhub.com).

    But for the GlockStore.com, it’s just a matter of controlling how their videos are displayed online and that means being an independent online video channel. Thus, Lenny Magill, the famous owner and CEO of GlockStore.com, has announced that they are launching their own, called GunVideo.com. Below is their announcement:

    Since 2010, the GlockStore YouTube channel has entertained, informed, and educated literally millions of viewers about firearms in general, and Glock handguns in particular.

    Our GlockStore.com YouTube channel has over 120,000 subscribers and over 15 million views. Why? Because everyone knows that Lenny Magill, CEO and Founder of GlockStore, makes the best Gun Videos on the internet!

    Recently, YouTube has decided they are going to shut down some firearm related channels. Which ones they will shut down aren’t exactly clear, as the guidelines as to what will, or will not be acceptable are a bit vague.

    However, as we interpret the guidelines, we believe there is a very real possibility that GlockStore’s YouTube Channel may soon be deleted and the hundreds of hours of valuable, instructional based videos will be lost.

    That’s why we’re launching GunVideo.com and why you’ll want to be a part of it! The new GunVideo.com will not only have all of our videos available to you, but they will be categorized and searchable so you can more easily find the videos that you’re interested in.

    It’s FREE to sign up and we won’t pester you with unwanted emails… just emails related to the release of new videos and the building of this new platform for all Gun Owners who want to become better, safer and more informed about all aspects of firearms.

    And if you’re a firearms related content producer, and you’d like your work included in the new GunVideo.com, just email us at info@gunvideo.com and we’ll be back to you shortly.

    Unlike YouTube, we appreciate your time and viewership as well as respect, and support both the 1st and 2nd Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.

    Thank you for subscribing to the new GunVideo.com

    Sincerely,

    Lenny Magill

    It is going to be a big task for GunVideo.com as it will need massive resources to host the videos coming from other firearms related content producers. It is no joke as there thousands and videos relating to guns over the years and just hosting these videos would take a data centre and bandwidth to serve to millions of views per month. Unless there are deep-pocketed investors willing to backup GunVideo.com, then it remains to be seen if it will be an open platform for firearms-related videos.

    But it is a step in the right direction if YouTube and other video sharing platforms become hostile to firearm videos and just banned all of them outright. If GunVideo.com is up to the task, it will become a haven for gun owners looking for instructional or product videos. What’s even better for them is that they do not have to worry about control over the videos as they are in friendly territory.

    Will there be Airsoftvideo.com or AirsoftTube.com as well? So far, airsoft is not much under threat at YouTube as compared to real firearms so there is no rush to create a video sharing platform for airsoft. But if someone is planning on one, they are free to get in touch with us so we can learn and perhaps help promote their venture.

    So if you are looking for firearm videos and do not want to see porn, then GunVideo.com, once its fully operational, will be one website for you to bookmark.


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    Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon Wildlands Splinter Cell Special Operations 1

    Tom Clancy’s Splinter Cell fans are rejoicing that Sam Fisher is back. In a crossover of two Tom Clancy game titles from Ubisoft, Sam Fisher will be in Special Operation 1 as Ghost Recon Wildlands starts Year 2 of more shoot `em missions in this expansive game. As of the 10th of April the Special Operation 1 Update was made available.

    For those who want to play free, they’ve got today until Sunday to play with no strings attached on PS4, Xbox One, and PC.

    What’s even better, Michael Ironside is also back as the voice of Sam Fischer.

    Ubisoft say that the Splinter Cell Special Challenge. will be available to all players for one month. Completing the mission will unlock rewards Night Vision Goggles with their own Splinter Cell vision and a Splinter Cell Patch. After the Challenge is over, the mission will still remain but the rewards will be gone by then.

    If you get a Year 2 pass, you will get direct access to all six Year 2 Classes of the Ghost War PVP Mode a weekly early. This will also include eight Battle Crates made of four Spec Ops and four Ghost War Crates, and the Splinter Cell Equipment Pack comprised of the following:

    • SC-4000 Assault Rifle
    • Five-Seven Blacklist weapon skinKarambit Knife that grants players a new, exclusive CQC move due to the Echelon Gloves from Blacklist. To activate the Karambit Knife CQC, the Echelon Gloves or Splinter Cell Costume must be equipped
    • The Splinter Cell Outfit, also including the Karambit Knife CQC move and Sam Fisher’s Night Vision Goggles
    • Two new Night Vision Goggles with their own night vision filter, with a flip-down animation
    • 3 new weapon camos

    There is also a reference to Metal Gear which will be noticed during the cut scene in the video after accomplishing the mission with Fisher taking to his Ghosts’ handler, Karen Bowman, saying, “Yeah, a few. I've heard they don't make them like me anymore. There was this other guy though--army infiltration. He wore a bandana or something."

    Bowman replies that the person he was pertaining may finally retire and Fisher then replies back that it will just only him that will remain. In their conversation, there are hints that another Splinter Cell is in the works as Bowman mentions an “Empty Quiver” situation which means a nuclear weapon is missing.

    Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon Wildlands story is located in the Bolivia where they are on a highly dangerous mission of taking down Santa Blanca drug cartel which is in a powerful alliance with the corrupt government, turning the South American country into a narco-state. The game uses the open world environment, which is an expansive one allowing the player to explore the landscape.


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    SIG P320 X-Carry (Forsvaret)

    The march of the SIG P320 as the preferred sidearm for military organisations continues. Just yesterday, the 12th of April 2018, the Danish Armed Force selected the flat-trigger SIG P230 X-Carry. The competitors for the gun selection process were the Beretta APX, Glock 17 Gen 5, and the Canik TP9 SF.

    According the Danish Defence Ministry Defence Acquisition and Logistics (DALO) website, the guns were tested under all conceivable conditions by users from Special Operations, Military Police, Air Force and the Army. In the tests, the P320 was determined to be the best candidate in the four-week trial period. The test program was prepared by Hærens Kamp- og Ildstøttecenter (HKIC) in cooperation with FMI which consists of the following: malfunction test, accuracy test, shooting in the dark and field field. The gun was also tested by experts from Direct Shooting Weapons (DSV) at HKIC with which they a made drop test, penetration test and precision test.

    There will be two versions that will be supplied to the Danes, the standard and a concealed carry. The P320 X-Series features a modular polymer X-series grip and extended magazine. The striker fired pistol has a flat trigger as well as an x-ray front sight and night sight rear plate. The P320 X-Series for the Danes will have a 21 round capacity.

    Accessories that can be attached the P320 X-Carry are a silencer, laser or weaponlight, and a red dot sight.

    The P320 X-Carry pistols are expected to be delivered to all services by the end of 2019 with SIG Sauer’s Danish agent, CT Solutions, handling the supply.

    The Danish Armed Forces are the latest to acquire the SIG P320 after the U.S. Military began adopting the pistol in 2017.


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    Oats Studios "Firebase"

    Oats Studios, the experimental sci-fi film studio founded by Neill Blomkamp, the director behind District 9 and Elysium, wants to go even bigger with their fan-funded film project. Last year, he released the short film set during the Vietnam War called “Firebase” in which a MACV SOG member, Sergeant Hines, goes after a creature called the “River God” who can turn the dead into the zombies.

    As the campaign being waged by Oat Studios puts it:

    We want to build a 21st century studio that is funded directly by fans. The more people online that support us the more content we will put out. We want to create an ecosystem where we are directly fueled by the community. Our goal now is the next FIREBASE film. Help fuel us here. We want to grow and expand, but we need the community’s help. We will create the FIREBASE film tailored to the incoming dollar amount. If we raise $40 dollars we will film a firebase "Cat" video. If we raise $100 million we will shoot a FIREBASE feature trilogy.

    Whilst we think of crowdfunding as those platforms the likes of Kickstarter, Indiegogo and GoFundMe, Neill Blomkamp and Oats Studios would rather go have their fans fund their film projects directly. The crowdfunding appeal goes for 30 days and whatever amount they raise, they will base the production based on it as there is not set funding goal. All the funds pledged by fans will be devoted to production as these are directly given.

    Each backer will get his/her name in the credits as a backer with three “behind the scenes” updates over the duration of the production of the film, Pre production, production and Post. There will be a private link to a members’ portal where they can view the film and downloadable PDF file of all the concept art generated for the film.

    Apart from the getting funding from fans for their films, they are now selling some swag right now to help fund the Canada-based studio. You can grab a shirt, hoodie, or a patch to show your support.

    If you have not watched the first “Firebase” short film before helping fund the sequel, you can now watch it below and have the weekend to decide how much you want to shell out to Oats Studios:


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    H&K HK433 & Haenel MK556

    And there were two. The candidates for the replacement of the System Sturmgewehr Bundeswehr program to replace G36 rifle were just narrowed down to two: the Heckler & Koch HK433 and the C.G. Haenel MK556.

    In a report at the Polish website, Milmag.pl, there were originally five competitors to this program. Sig Sauer, who was offering the MCX, withdrew last November complaining that the specifications were more written to accommodate Heckler & Koch. Rheinmetall and Steyr Mannlicher withdrew their offer, the RS556, stating economic reasons. The other competitor is FN Herstal of Belgium with their SCAR.

    Revealed last year, the Heckler & Koch HK433 is chambered 5.56 mm x 45 and combines the best features of the G36 and the HK416. The barrel length is easily configurable and it is fully ambidextrous in operations. It has a folding and retractable stock and for assembly and disassembly, it is completely tool less. It comes with a 30-round magazine and has a rate of fire of approximately 700 rounds per minute.  It also has a maintenance-free round counter integrated in receiver that requires no energy supply.

    If it gets selected, it will the Bundeswehr will become the first user of the HK433.

    Perhaps many of you are not familiar with the Haenel MK556. It is a fully automatic AR-based rifle that is available in 10.5, 12.5, 14.5 and 16 inch barrel lengths. It is  made of high-quality materials with indirect gas-operating with adjustable gas-off take.It has a 4 NAR STANAG 4694 rail handguards that are emovable without the need for tools.

    C.G. Haenel is a supplier to the Special Forces of the Germany Police and the Bundeswehr. Both use been RS9 rifle which the Bundeswehr has given the designation as the G29 and is a medium range sniper rifle. It is chambered in the .338 Lapua Magnum, has a colour scheme similar to the RAL8000 and has a maximum range of 1,500 metres.

    Some say that the contract will be Heckler & Koch’s to take, but then who knows? Haenel may just have the contract.


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    R. Lee Ermey (Official YouTube Channel)

    Opening my Facebook Page yesterday morning, my feed was full of shared news that Ronald Lee Ermey, most known for his role as the drill instructor in Stanley Kubrick’s “Full Metal Jacket”, has passed away due to complications related to pneumonia. He was age 74.

    “Full Metal Jacket”, which is based on Gustav Hasford’s semi autobiographical novel, “The Short Timers”, earned him a Golden Globe Award nomination for Best Supporting Actor. His role in the movie, which is also deemed to be one of the greatest movies of all time, has typecast him as the voice of authority.

    Ermey was a real Marine Drill Instructor. He joined the U.S. Marine Corps at age 17 initially serving in the aviation support field until becoming a drill instructor. He spent 14 months in Vietnam with the Marine Wing Support Group 17 and spent the rest of his service base in Okinawa where he became an E-6 or staff sergeant and was medically discharged in 1972.

    His first gig in a film was when he played as an Air Cavalry pilot and technical advisor to “Apocalypse Now” director Francis Ford Coppola when he was studying at the University of Manila in the Philippines. But it was not in “Full Metal Jacket” where he played the role of Drill Instructor for the first time, it was with Sidney Furie's “The Boys In Company C” in 1978.

    But his role as Gunnery Sergeant Hartman in “Full Metal Jacket” in 1987 that endeared him to many.  Many airsofters can say his lines from the movie especially during his interactions with Privates Joker and Gomer Pyle. He was initially brought in as a technical consultant but made film his own audition that impressed Kubrick that he got him to play as Gunny Hartman.

    He appeared in about 60 films and also being the voice in some animated blockbusters such as Toy Story. He also appeared on TV as well as in video games as a character or as the voice of a character.

    He mainly also a spokesperson and endorser of companies such as Glock, Tru-Spec, Dick’s Sporting Goods, and Coor’s Light. He is an ardent Second Amendment supporter, being a director of the National Rifle Association (NRA) and had his own show called “GunnyTime” on the Outdoor Channel.

    He finally got to be an official “Gunny” when he received his honorary post-service promotion to gunnery sergeant (E-7) from Commandant of the Marine Corps General James L. Jones in 2002 for his support to those in military service.

    He is survived by his wife, Mila, who he married in 1975. They have four children.

     

    Top Photo:R. Lee Ermey (Source: R. Lee Ermey Official YouTube Channel)


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    PNP - COMELEC Checkpoint 2016 (Source: PNP)

    It is election season again in the Philippines with the Barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan (Village and Youth Council) elections are finally proceeding after being postponed twice. And for the duration of the election period, which started last 14 April and will last until the 21 May a gun ban is put into place.

    Election gun bans are in put into place in the Philippines to prevent any bloodshed during the period as the country is known for bloody election-related incidents.

    Whilst airsoft guns are not considered as firearms as of 2013 with the signing of the Republic Act No. 10591, the Philippine Commission on Elections (COMELEC), can include airsoft guns in the election gun ban.  In COMELEC Resolution No. 10197 promulgated last 14 September 2017 covering these elections, it says in the Definition of Terms:

    “o. Firearm, as defined in R. A. No. 10591, refers to any handheld or portable weapon, whether a small arm or light weapon, that expels or is designed to expel a bullet, shot, slug, missile or any projectile, which is discharged by means of expansive force of gases from burning gunpowder or other form of combustion or any similar instrument or implement, wherein the barrel, frame or receiver is considered a firearm. The term shall include airguns, airsoft guns, and replicas/imitations of firearms in whatever form that can cause an ordinary person to believe that they are real, including the parts thereof, as defined under pertinent laws. Imitation firearm, as defined under the same Act and as used herein, refers to a replica of a firearm, or other device that is so substantially similar in coloration and overall appearance to an existing firearm as to lead a reasonable person to believe that such imitation firearm is a real firearm. The term shall include airsoft guns.” (Italics and underline ours)

    That means no airsoft for over a month for airsoft in the Philippines. As the COMELEC is coordinating with the Philippine National Police (PNP), COMELEC checkpoints are put into place in accordance with Resolution No. 10198 that was also promulgated last 14 September 2017, airsoft players caught transporting airsoft guns whilst the gun ban is in effect shall suffer the penalty as provided for in Section 40 of Resolution No. 10197:

    “Any person found guilty of any election offense described in this Resolution shall be punished with imprisonment of not less than one year but not more than six years and shall not be subject to probation. In addition, the guilty party shall be sentenced to suffer disqualification to hold public office and deprivation of the right of suffrage. If he is a foreigner, he shall be sentenced to deportation which shall be enforced after the prison term has been served.” (Italics ours)

    Previously, some game sites in the country allow airsoft players to have their airsoft guns and gear stored in order that they do not have to transport their airsoft guns in order to play during the gun ban. Game site owners will have to clarify with their local COMELEC officer if they can do this, but with the gun ban already in effect, it may be too late.

    Airsoft players in the Philippine should take heed of the gun ban or face the consequences. It will be just several weeks so perhaps it’s time for some chairsofting or do other hobbies whilst waiting it out.

     

    Photo source: Philippine National Police Facebook Page.


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    Tactical Athlete Games

    While visiting Recoil Web, I noticed their announcement of their partnership with Tactical Athlete Games (TAG). It is my first time to read or hear of this, and it looks like something that airsofters might want to take a look into. But before we get ahead, let’s learn more about this new combat sport that is about to hold its first event next month:

    The Tactical Athlete Games is the next big step in the shooting sports industry. Crossfit has existed for over 20 years now, and boasts the fittest men and women on earth. Combat has existed for thousands of years, and now, the Tactical Athlete Games is blending the two, fitness with tactics, to create one of the hottest new extreme-sports in the world.

    Many Crossfitters come from the tactical community who value to be always in tip top shape to meet the rigors of their professions, as they are either in military or as first responders. Now with the Tactical Athlete Games, they can combine their Crossfit passion with their shooting proficiencies in a more competitive environment:

    The Tactical Athlete Games is designed to test the skills, readiness, and mental toughness of these athletes. The Tactical Athlete Games fill a huge gap in the shooting world. Existing shooting competitions fail to comprehensively capture the essence of what a tactical athlete is and what he does. For a Tactical Athlete, fitness is a means, not an end. Fitness allows a tactical athlete to get to the fight, perform at a high level, execute the mission, and get back home safely, despite the conditions or terrain. The Tactical Athlete Games will embody this type of challenge, and bring it to the world in a measurable and testable format.

    Thus, participants in the Tactical Athlete Games should expect more difficult conditions that will test their stamina through the various obstacles put in their way and be able to shoot accurately under pressure.

    Is it something that can be adapted to airsoft? Yes, it can be done just like practical shooting and 3-Gun Nation, a “Tactical Airsoft Games” patterned after the Tactical Athlete Games can be organized. It will be basically the same with the exception of airsoft guns being employed instead of real firearms. Pretty sure a good number of airsofters are doing Crossfit and they might just be interested in participating in one.

    As for the first Tactical Athlete Games event, it will be held on the 19th to 20th May 2018 at the King B Ranch - White Feather Shooting Range in Ardmore, Tennessee.


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    L8A5A3 (UK MOD)

    With the L85A3 now rolling out as the new assault rifle of the British Army, the U.K. Ministry of Defense also announced last 11 April 2018 in a news release that they will also start upgrading the existing SA80 A2 Rifle to the A3 Model to ensure that all servicemen will be operating on the same model and the enhancements will make it remain in service until 2025 and beyond.

    The SA80 A2/L85A2 has seen much action ever since it the upgrade was done from A1 in 1998, having been used in combat in Afghanistan and Iraq. The upgrade to the A3 model is to be done by Heckler & Koch again which made the A2 upgrade after the A1 performed poorly in First Gulf War, gaining bad reputation from the British soldiers. The A2 had many redesigns, achieving better reliability rates, though the reliability was lower in hot environments. Still the A2 was prone to jamming.

    The A3 upgrade has the following features: a) the upper receiver is modified; b) full length rail system; c) better coating with a “flat dark earth” colour scheme; d) streamlined foregrip; e) 100 grams lighter than  the A2; and f) bracket for low light sight that are smaller, lighter and require fewer batteries. The upgrade from the A2 model will cost £5.4 million and will initially be done with 5,000 weapons with intent to upgrade more in the future.

    In the same MOD news release, Defence Minister Guto Bebb said, “This multi-million-pound upgrade will give our Army a lighter, more hardwearing, better-camouflaged combat rifle so our soldiers can perform on the frontline of some of the most dangerous locations across the world. This investment is also a boost to Nottingham’s highly-skilled gun-makers who proudly support our troops in their task to protect our country in the face of intensifying threats.”

    Director Land Equipment at the MOD’s Defence Equipment and Support organisation, Major General Colin McClean also said, “The SA80 is a battle proven weapon used by the UK Armed Forces on operations all over the world. The upgrade will build upon the rifle’s state-of-the-art features enhancing accuracy and consistency. The Mid Life Improvement project will ensure that our troops have the right equipment at the right time.”

    The latest reincarnation of the SA80 in the A3 will ensure it will be the primary weapon of the British Army for many years to come. From a lackluster beginning, the bullpup rifle is now one of the more recognizable rifles worldwide.

     

    Top photo:British Army soldier with L85A3 (Source: UK MOD)


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    GunStreamer

    The race is finally on for the website will be dominant video sharing platform for gun related content apart from YouTube. With the YouTube getting strict on content on firearms, some enterprising individuals and companies are launching their own services with GunStreamer being the latest to appear on our radar.

    GunStreamer was launched in March 2018 joining other sites for the attention of gun content developers such as GunVideo.com and Full30.com.  In its press release, GunStreamer describes itself as “a user-generated video sharing site, featuring anything related to guns or weapons for informational and entertainment purposes.”

    The creator of the site, Austin Roberts said that, "Changes in some platform policies are alienating a large population of gun & weapon enthusiasts. These are hobbyists helping other hobbyists and they have no where to go with these greater restrictions. We're hoping to change that."

    With the entry of GunStreamer, there are more options from developers of firearm videos to go choose where their videos will be uploaded if YouTube becomes a hostile place for them. Now it is just a matter of which platform gives them the most benefit.

    While many firearms videos are done by hobbyists who would like to share a thing or two about their knowledge there are those who make making firearm related content such as videos for a living. YouTube’s ad-revenue sharing scheme has been lucrative to those who have a good number of subscribers and high viewing times. So far, this is what these new platforms do not offer and also the question if their existing infrastructure (video hosting) will be able to handle thousands and thousands of videos. YouTube became a scalable behemoth it is right now when it got snapped up by Google in 2006.

    But then, advertisers came in when they see more eyeballs at videos on YouTube when it started racking up millions and millions of viewers. It will take some time for these websites to get that traction unless the firearms industry would move their ad monies and spread them out to these sites. But will revenues be more than enough to bring the more famous ones in?

    Now, which one will dominate after a few years? Place your bets now.


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    SmartShooter SMASH

    Many say that you should always make your shot count when in a firefight. Even better, make the first shot count which is a matter of life and death. Smart Shooter, an Israeli company, promises that their SMASH electro-optical fire control system will give the shooter the first round hit.

    SMASH is a family of fire control systems developed to ensure that first round hit and turning small weapons into 21st century smart firearms. Thus, mounting a SMASH on existing rifle, would make the weapon more advanced and it is a matter of the shooter making the decisive moment of pulling the trigger to shoot an intended target.

    While SMASH looks like a very large Holosight, it consists of the smart sighting module unit and the modified grip. Easily mounted on any rifle that has the M1913 Picatinny rails, the shooter just needs to activate the SMASH unit with the switch. The process is a simple, three-step one: acquire, lock and fire. Once the shooter pulls the trigger, the system does the rest. Even novice shooters can make their first round hits, turning a new army recruit into deadly marksman once given the basics of using the SMASH.

    According to SmartShooter, the main system benefits are:

    • Increases lethality and survivability
    • Counters static and dynamic targets
    • Reduces effects of stress and physical effort
    • Suitable for diverse combat scenarios
    • Reduces collateral damage
    • Drastically shortens time-to-hit
    • Ensures precision hits with minimal training
    • Equalises high-performance skills across platoon
    • Add-on to legacy weapons, firing standard ammunition

    It also has the following additional benefits:

    • Field proven
    • Day and night operation
    • Retains ‘fire-at-will’ capability
    • Short digital zeroing process
    • MIL-STD 810 compliant

    Accordingly, the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) had done some extensive live testing and has already cleared it for use by the Ground Forces in December 2017. With one of the toughest and advanced military organization in the world happy with using the SMASH, the company has something going with their system.
    The SMASH is not the only system of its kind. We have already written of the Smart system in the U.S. called TrackingPoint, but it is an expensive system and cannot be readily installed on just any rifle. With the SMASH, it provides a more affordable system as it can used on almost any weapons platform these days.

    With many Military and Law Enforcement organizations already equipped with rifles that come with the rail system, it is just a matter of mounting the SMASH system on these.

    It will be hard to go against a shooter equipped with a SMASH, especially a highly trained one.

     

    Photo Source: SmartShooter


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    Delta129 Gun Computer For the F2000 AEG

    Cybergun posted photos from Reddit user “Delta129” showing his creation that should make HALO fans happy --- a Gun Mounted Computer for the FN F2000 AEG. Whilst some of you many just dismiss it as another glorified BB counter, it actually does more than that and should make F2000 AEG owners happy that they can use something to make their already futuristic-looking AEG look even more high-tech.

    It is a work in progress as it goes beyond being an BB/ammo counter. Delta129 is working on it to show weapon battery percentage, time, compass heading and show the ammo count the magazine. According to him it is driven by a custom-made PCB with the same CPU that Arduinos use and housed in a 3D printed enclosure on the top of the gun. Too bad it won’t make coffee for you, but this has more features than the Alien Colonial Marines M41A Pulse Rifle Ammo Counter which also has an airsoft kit.

    We’ll shamelessly post here what Delta129 wrote at the Reddit Airsoft forum on his project and we added the photos that were shared by Cybergun here:

    Hi everyone!

    I recently posted here to share my work-in-progress on a multipurpose gun-mounted computer. Well, I've just finished developing the core part of the system - which is the ammo counter. Here's what it does and how it works:

    WARNING! LONG POST AHEAD! Just click the links if you're lazy

    The title screen displays the amount of ammo you've got left in your magazine. It currently supports counts of up to 999 BBs. It shows the ammo count using both a number, and a visual progress bar (which is much more readable when your eye is focused at a distance). The progress bar and number will change color depending on how much ammo you have left, there are 3 separate colors: Empty->1/3 (Red), 1/3->2/3 (Yellow) and 2/3->Full (Green).


    You can set up up to 6 presets, for various types of magazines with various capacities, and quickly cycle through them using buttons mounted on the side of the enclosure.


    The screen brightness is fully adjustable, so it will always fit any lighting conditions you may encounter in the field, be it day or night.

    I have installed a microswitch into the magwell of my F2000, which detects when you remove and reinsert the magazine. There is also a manual reload button on the body of the gun. Both mechanisms are used to reset the counter back to full after you reload, using a behavior of your choice, varying from using either of the two, using just one, having to use both, or a special "Inverted" mode, which will automatically reset the ammo count on mag removal, but if you first press the button beforehand, it will preserve the ammo count.


    The system is powered by your main gun battery, thanks to this it can measure its voltage, and thus determine how much charge you've got left. This part is still a work in progress and just displays the voltage now. In the end, it will enable you to choose from various types and voltages of airsoft batteries, to get the most accurate reading.

    The magnetic heading and time indicators are just random numbers at this moment, since I haven't yet started working on those modules (I will soon!).

    As a cherry on top, all the colors, including the basic UI, screen background, and all three ammo count colors are fully customize-able through an on-board editor, so you can make the interface better suit your favorite space shooter game.


    Since quite a lot of you stated their interest in buying one of these, should I ever start selling them (for about $50-$100 not more, if you're curious), I've made this google form, which you may fill in with your preferred form of contact, and be reminded when it is available for purchase. I'm not promising anything yet, but I'll try to make that real.

    Oh, and lastly, here's some eye candy for all the Halo fans out there!

    Interested in owning one? Well, first you will have to be an owner of the FN F2000 AEG from Cybergun or the licensed one that G&G Armament has so you can install here. Cybergun might be interested in selling the kit or a fully complete FN F2000 AEG with the gun computer installed.

    But it is nice to see someone use their skills to innovate something for airsoft in their free time.  If you know more of some interesting airsoft projects, just drop just a note here so we can feature them.


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    SiONyx Aurora Action Camera

    We always wish we can take footage of the night ops in airsoft games and milsim events with our action camera. Whilst action cameras nowadays, regardless of price and brand, already provide really good high definition footage of the airsoft gameplay, they are still poor in lowlight conditions, especially in really dark conditions.

    If everything goes according to plan, we might soon have one in the form of the Aurora from SiOnyx LLC.

    What we are especially excited about with Aurora as an action cam is its true night vision capability. With its sensor, it can produce colour night vision which is what we prefer rather than just be satisfied with the green glow of existing night vision devices.

    The sensor is a 1” 720p/60fps with patented Ultra Light Low Light CMOS technology (thought it did not mention the ISO capabilities). This the resolution is a bit of a letdown when what we are looking for in action camera these days is already 4K capabilities which many mainstream action cameras already provide. But some are willing to settle down with the 720p if they can get the true night vision, especially airsofters and outdoors people who would be happy to see in the dark with such an equipment.

    In night vision you can either have monochrome or colour night vision depending on how you prefer it to be.

    Instead of an LCD backscreen just like in today’s action cameras, Aurora has a viewfinder which means that you can use it like a night vision monocular. It is just a matter of finding an NVG mount for it to wear on helmets or a headstrap so you can mount it to your head gear.

    Already sold on with the Night Vision features? There are more features such as GPS, Compass AR Info Overlay, and Accelerometer, Still Image Capture, Stereo Mic, and Timelapse.  It has an IP67 Waterproof rating which means it can be submerged in water up to 3ft deep for 30 minutes. It weighs 8 ounces which is light enough. With its rechargeable 3.6v lithium battery, it can provide continuous capture of up to 2 hours. It has Wifi connectivity so you can connect it your Android or iOS device.

    What we found to be missing in the features is image stabilization which is a must in action cameras these days so smoother video can be achieved.

    Aurora has immediately achieved its funding goals on Kickstarter, having received £115,653 in pledges out of its £35,848 funding goal. So if there are no hiccups in the production timetable, it will soon start shipping to its backers which is estimated to be in July 2018. You can still back the project, which starts at US$479 to be one of the first owners of Aurora, as long as you are in a country prohibited by US ITAR restrictions.

    So if you want one of these, you can pledge funding on Kickstarter, which will allow you to own one at a discounted price. Hopefully, this really becomes an actual consumer product that we can use in airsoft if it does what it claims to do.


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    USMC 5.56mm Round

    As we have written here before, the U.S. Army has been stressing on the need to replace the 5.56mm round in order to defeat new body armour that potential enemies will be wearing.  The present 5.56mm round is said to be inadequate in penetrating ballistic plates that are similar to those used by the U.S. Military.

    One option that the U.S. Army is looking into is the development of a 6.5mm case-telescoped (CT) round or a round that falls between a 5.56mm and a 7.62mm round according to Military.com.

    A new development is that the U.S. Marine Corps are cooperating with the Army in the development replacement of the 5.56 mm and have taken a look at the 6.5mm Creedmoor with the Special Operations Command as revealed by Brig. Gen. Joseph Shrader, commander of Marine Corps Systems Command during the Sea-Air-Space Exposition early this month.

    The revelation came as a surprise as the USMC has decided to procure more of the 5.56mm M27 Infantry Automatic Rifles which is based on the Heckler & Koch HK416 rifle that has been customized according to the requirements of the Marines. However, Shrader clarified that he does not know even with this collaboration for a new round would mean a new weapon for the Marines.

    CT Round

    In the same Military.com report, the U.S. Army has invested in the development of the 6.5mm CT rounds which is now known as the Textron's Case-Telescoped Weapons and Ammunition. While the weapon prototype developed for the round is heavy, the U.S. Army has opened it up to the industry to work on prototypes that can shed some of the weight and perhaps an even better weapons platform called the Next Generation Squad Automatic Rifle (NGSAR).

    The U.S Army has accelerated the development of the NGSAR which is now seen to be initially ready either in 2022 or 2023, three or four years earlier than the target rollout.


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    John Wick: Chapter 2

    “John Wick (Keanu Reeves) is on the run for two reasons… he’s being hunted for a global $14 million dollar open contract on his life, and for breaking a central rule: taking a life on Continental Hotel grounds. The victim was a member of the High Table who ordered the open contract. John should have already been executed, except the Continental’s manager, Winston, has given him a one-hour grace period before he’s 'Excommunicado'– membership revoked, banned from all services and cut off from other members. John uses the service industry to stay alive as he fights and kills his way out of New York City.”

    That, my dear folks, is the synopsis which mainly describes the end of Chapter 2 as reported by Collider. It gives a backgrounder to what we shall expect to be an even deadlier Chapter 3 where every assassin in the world will be out gunning for his head. I could still vividly imagine all the phones ringing at the end of the Chapter 2 and John Wick started running to get away from his surroundings that can have an assassin or two lurking to take potshots at him.

    The synopsis of the movie was done at the CinemaCon in Las Vegas, which ended yesterday. The initial details of the neo-noir action thriller film reveal that the co-director of the original John Wick, Chad Stahelski, will be back to direct Chapter 3 (the other co-director, David Leitch, was credited as producer in the first film).  Also a posted for the film was also revealed as shown below:

    Chapter 3 will be mainly set in New York City though there are some conflicting details. The synopsis says that John Wick will have to fight his way out of New York City, though Stahelksi says that it will end in New York City… or it will lead to a Chapter 4 which will be how John Wick will get out of the city alive?

    The questions that will surely be in the minds of fans of the John Wick film series is how John Wick will carry on his personal war when he is an excommunicado. Will he be able to tap resources equal to those that he was able to access in the Continental network? How will he use the Marker that Winston (Ian Macshane) gave to him before he let him out of the Continental to give him a headstart? Who will be his allies in Chapter 3? Will the Bowery King (Laurence Fishburne) still give him support?

    Just as the John Wick: Chapter 3 poster reveals, it will be released on the 17th of May 2019.


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