Rethinking the AR-15 for Home Defense.

I’ve totally sidelined all my “Combat Rifles” for Home Defense use.  Specifically the 5.56mm guns.  See, the AR-15 does great for Home Defense in many aspects.  They are easy to use, have precision accuracy, and have a great capacity.  They should be perfect for Home Defense, right?
Not really.
The AR-15 has one dramatic problem.  They are hella loud.  The High pressure, Supersonic Crack, of the AR-15′s Report is severely damaging to human ears.  Even Ogre ears.
Last time I took one of my boys out shooting, I provided him with Ear Pro and Eye Pro.  We were having fun shooting, and he’s a good Shooter.  Well he loaded up an AR-15 and forgot to put his Ear Pro back in after taking them out for some unknown reason.  (No, that’s his reason… “I don’t know”.) I wasn’t looking as I was loading a magazine and normally he is a cautious shooter and does it right.  Well, he cracked off a shot.  Now, we were outside, well away from structures that would reflect sound waves.  But the rifle was still so loud that it hurt his ears pretty badly.  2 Weeks later, he still had signs that his hearing took some damage.  Unfortunately with Hearing, there is nothing you can do.  What’s done is done.

Imagine how this could have gone down if we were in an Indoor shooting range.  He could have been made deaf from the AR’s blast.

Imagine in an emergency situation in the home… Bad Guy makes a threat.  You suddenly grab your AR and let him have it.  5, 6, 12 rounds into the Goblin.  Inside your house.  Now you and your wife and all your kids are all completely deaf thanks to the AR-15 and thanks to the Pain In The Ass and Expensive Restrictions on Suppressors.  Sure, the Goblin is no longer a threat… but now all of you are going to suffer from this the rest of your lives.
Sure, a Home Defense Shotgun is Loud – but it’s not that sharp, eardrum shattering crack of a 5.56mm Carbine.  Hell, even my .45-70 Thumper isn’t that loud.  Even pistol caliber carbines are a great option compared to the AR-15.
Another bad choice for HD duty is the .357 Magnum.  An ungodly loud handgun that is unpleasant to fire with earpro in an indoor range… Devastating to your hearing when fired indoors unprotected.

The best weapon ever invented for Home Defense remains the Tactical Shotgun.  Probably the most effective and least damaging to one’s hearing for weapons running Un-Suppressed.   And you can get a good shotgun for a few hundred bucks.  Or you could use that Thousand Dollar AR, with that 800 Dollar Can and that 200 Dollar Tax Stamp… Couple Hundred bucks vs A Couple Grand.  You chose.  But ask yourself this… Is that 2 Grand worth of rifle going to do a better job of home defense than the Shotgun?

 

Rethinking the Novak Sights.

Nov 30th 1999, I posted a thought on TheFiringLine.com that I titled “Rethinking the Novak Sights”.
You can check out that thread here.  It’s an interesting read.  And some of the ideas that were put out there are only starting to really catch on.  But more on that in a moment.

Back then the Novaks were taking the gun community by storm and these things were being installed on everything.  I even remember seeing a Remington 870 with a Novak Rear Sight installed.   Much like today, I think it’s popularity was due to the fact that while it wasn’t actually any better, the Novaks looked new and cool and to show that you were Switched On, you had to have them.  Such things are still going on in the firearms community today, but probably even more so as the Internet has become universal and pop culture spreads through it faster than the Zombie Virus.

The problem that I mentioned in the original post wasn’t ever really addressed for years.  Novaks continued their Cool Guy swagger through the gun industry even still.  The M&P Pistols, still essentially brand new, came out with Novak Style sights… or Ramp Sights as some call them.   Some guys would cut a flat face on the Ramp portion to try to solve the problem… taking a more expensive sight and then cutting on it to try to help improve the poor design.  Some guys went back to the normal flat faced sights made popular by Trijicon, as found on Glocks and other pistols.  These are better than Ramp Sights by far, but are still less than Ideal.

Rob Pincus though… he’s actually done something that addresses the issue of One Hand Manipulation.  After all these years – the problem has been solved.

The CLAW.

 

Outstanding. Problem solved. I like the wide notch rear sight, I like the fact that it can hook solid and lets you jack that slide with authority. BRAVO.
I am going to be ordering these sights as soon as I can free up some funds. I have 3 Glocks I want these on.

Back to the odd fixes… Skateboard Tape on your gun. Back at the time of that original posting, I had only heard of people using SBT on their guns, normally around the Grip. This guy that mentioned the tape actually on the slide. I have since seen it a few times… but more recently I am seeing it more and more on guns. The concept of adding grip has really taken off. I’ve seen SBT on the sides, top, and at the front of the slides on just about every sort of serious use pistol. I’ve even seen it on some less than serious guns… such as a Hi-Point. I’ve never put any on my guns, but I am considering trying it on my Glock 23.