6/22/12

Review - Tactical Advantage Inc


Today I'd like to give a good word to my readers about Tactical Advantage Inc. They sell new gear, at about average prices. I've been trying to recreate my issue FLC in woodland rather than tan, and they not only stocked hard to find gear, but it arrived at my doorstep a day and a half after I ordered it. Great selection, and super fast shipping. I would consider myself a fan, and I'll be buying from them again.

Pictured is the mag pouches I needed; SDS Triple mag shingles, style 4070. The white stuff appears to be chalk marking where they tacked down the molle strips. Each color of pouch has a slightly different cut as well.
(From the Tactical Advantage site)

So, if you ever need some issue gear, I'd say give Tactical Advantage a look!

6/20/12

Rap4 Fusion BDU First Impressions and Review

 A couple weeks ago I placed an order for two sets of Rap4 Fusion BDUs, in Flecktarn and Vegetato ("Italian Camo", on their website). After a week and a half, these arrived on my doorstep. The fit is different than standard BDUs or ACUs. The cut is visibly similar to ACUs, but has buttons like BDUs. The sizing is also off, so if you buy these BE SURE to check the sizing chart. Mine are currently being exchanged for the proper sizes.
 Here's a comparison of the clone Flecktarn and an old Fleck jacket I have. Granted the jacket may have faded out a little, but I feel like it's a good copy. The colors  appear to be a little better suited to my area than the real deal Flecktarn, too.
 The two packaged jackets on the forest floor near my house. They're still packaged because I needed them intact to return them. Fleck appears too dark, but Vegetato appears to be a good fit. If possible, I'd like to exchange the Flecktarn for Cadpat. A note on the fabric - It's a thicker material than standard 50/50 NYCO ripstop uniforms, but doesn't feel as stiff as 65/35 NYCO "Battlerip". The Flecktarn is also printed on a white base fabric, where as the real deal Fleck has a dark green base fabric.
 Holding up the Vegetato to compare against the  background. That's a pretty faithful copy. The highlights are a little brighter and more frequent than real deal Vegetato, but the uniform should perform just fine.
The Flecktarn appears to match the pine needles littering the ground very well. Come fall, this pattern will be a real godsend.

Final thoughts: Be sure to order the appropriate size from Rap4 if you purchase one of their clone uniforms. Medium Regular is NOT the same as Rap4 Medium Regular, so be sure to check out their sizing chart. On their website you can pick up a pack of both shirt and pants for a discount over buying the parts individually, so give that a look. When I receive my replacements, I'll have a more hands-on review.

Also, don't forget to bid on my M4 on ebay here. I really appreciate the help, and have a nice day!

6/16/12

Airsoft M4 for sale

 I've decided it's time to part ways with one of my collection. This is a JG M4 S-System - Bought it for my ex-girlfriend as a present for graduating Army Basic Training. She left me, and I'm trying to get rid of the gun too.
It's a good gun, I'm just a fan of more intricate and unique guns. Rear sight is missing, but it's got a red-dot to make up for it. Here's the link, hopefully it'll work. Please rock in the bids, because it'll really help the site. It's a great way to give back to the site.

6/10/12

How-To: Parachute buckle Alice pack mod

Here you have an Alice rucksack. Standard issue Vietnam-era ruck. Some people prefer them over the new MOLLE II rucks. The design allows one to pack heavy things higher up more easily than the new rucks. One bad thing about them though, is the closure.
To hold the top flap closed, you have to snake 1 inch webbing through this triglide-esque attachment. Personally I like parachute buckles, so I'm going to add those.
The waist buckle was broken when I got my ruck, so I'll be replacing that too. This won't be part of the writeup, it's just a side note.
Step 1: Acquire parachute buckles. These are just a couple bucks at a hardware or fabric store, or you might be able to salvage them off an old backpack. I had some in a scrap bin.
The way the ruck is sewed, you can't just cut the threads and remove the old triglides. This also means you won't be able to put these on the webbing the old fashioned way. The remedy this:
Step 2: Make small cuts on the rear of the buckle. You only need to do this on the side of the buckles that attach to the bottom of the ruck, because the top webbing will accept a stock buckle.
Step 3: Snip the triglide off. I used some compound snips I use for cutting chainmail, but wire cutters would work just as well.
Here's a comparison of the old and the new.
Step 4: Cram the webbing loop onto the buckle. I had to use needle nosed pliers to get the webbing through the tiny cut. That's a good thing though - The harder it is to get on, the less likely it will be able to fall off in the field.
Step 5: Enjoy! Simply snap your buckles together, and you have a slightly more modern ruck. And you can open it with a simple squeeze, rather than running loops of webbing through the triglide.

6/8/12

Red Tigerstripe Longstrike

A couple months ago I painted my Longstrike for HvZ. Blue nerf guns at night sounded a little too dangerous to me, especially with the realistic design of the Longstrike. Red and orange tiger stripe seemed appropriate for a high-viz paintjob. A bit of paracord serves as a sling.

6/3/12

Buildlog: Nerf M41A Pulse Rifle WIP, Lots of Nerf Kit

This weekend has been a riot for me. It's like second childhood. The Nerf guns you see above I got off Craigslist for $75 - About 50% off. They all seem to be stock and in more or less good working condition, except for the darts. The Vulcan seems to only spit darts about ten feet, though. If anyone knows what's wrong with that, drop me a line in the comment box below, please. I even managed to resell some of these guns to help cover the costs. This lot includes my second Stampede. I'm a big fan of the original design - Automatic, full sized... Reminiscent of a real rifle. The ridiculous amounts of ammo and high capacity magazines makes it even better. I've seen Minimized Stampedes, and even an M41A Pulse Rifle Nerf build. I like the looks of both, and plan to emulate the latter project. I found another good build thread, which also uses the Longshot front gun.
 For those of you unfamiliar with the M41A Pulse Rifle, it is one of the most famous weapons in Science Fiction. First appearing in the movie Aliens, it has been copied and cameod in all types of movies, and even The Simpsons. I would highly recommend Aliens to anyone who hasn't seen it yet.

First cut I did on the Stampede took out the battery compartment, and was done with a Dremel. These pictures are from my cell phone camera, as I didn't want to get the grime of the garage into my camera. The blue tape was to hold the two halves of the gun together - I replaced them with rubberbands not long after this picture was taken. My dremel work was pretty sloppy, so I swapped over to the scroll saw.
The overall size and weight decrease is substantial - The result is only a little larger than a Maverick. Unfortunately, the stock battery tray no longer works with the holder cut out - I plan to use 9V battery connectors to create a custom battery pack, because I have a surplus of them laying around. The stock batteries weigh quite a bit, and make up roughly half the weight of the gun, and throw the center of balance completely off.
Here's a cluttered shot of my minimized stampede with a 35 round Raider drum. Note the rubber bands to hold it together. I'll post a comparison of the minimized Stampede along with a Maverick, and stock Stampede.

Upcoming for the Pulse Rifle - I need to make a Pulse Rifle shroud. Pepakura or homemade out of plastic are my two ideas. The Longshot Front Gun appears to be just the ticket for the underslung grenade launcher, so I am going to grab one off ebay. Updates will be posted as they happen.


Next up on today's workbench is a Nite-Finder and Jolt integration, ala EIK. I started looking at his stuff because of the awesome paintjobs, but I like the mods as well. Both the Nite Finder and Jolt are slightly modded. The Jolt had the barrel post pulled out with some needle nosed pliers, which allows it to fire Stefans (Homemade darts). The barrel fit is quite tight on my stefans, so it gets surprising (Nearly frightening) ranges, with properly weighted darts. It is truly the nerf embodiment of Men in Black's Noisy Cricket. The Nite-Finder has the post and air restrictor taken out. I need to foam the plunger head, and probably re-grease the cylinder.
For any aspiring modders out there, here's a wonderful trick. Trace whatever you're disassembling on a piece of paper, and then stick the screws you take out of your item into the paper. That way, if you have multiple lengths of screws you won't lose them, and you'll be able to tell where they go.

The light and electronics have been removed. Hopefully they'll find their way into another project. I need some epoxy to finish the Nite-Jolt integration, so stay tuned for updates.

So that's the state of things. Let me know what you think in the comics, and have a good day!