Sunday, August 20, 2017

How To Fly with a Gun

how to bring a gun on a plane, tsa, flying with a gun, airport 
So, you want to fly with a gun? Well, get the idea of strolling past first class with your handgun tucked in your waistband out of your head, because if you guessed you can just walk on a plane with a gun, that’s just impossible.

The only way to fly with your firearm is to check it in, and here’s how to do it. First off, please consult your airline or the TSA for any questions or clarifications. This is current as of August of 2017, and I’m not responsible if you get busted.

First off, know the laws and regulations of the state you are traveling to regarding your firearm. Next, prep your gun before you get to the airport. Your firearm and all magazines must be unloaded. No ammunition can be in the magazines, even if they are out of the firearm.

Next, make sure your firearm is in a lockable hard case. The lock doesn’t need to be a TSA lock, but it can’t be easily pried open.

If you’re shipping ammunition, it must be in that case, or another case that follows the same guidelines as above. Ammunition must be in its original box, or a box specifically designed to carry ammunition. It can’t be thrown in the case, or even loose in a plastic bag.

Got that? To recap… Unloaded, and in a hard locked case.

Now that we got that out of the way, let’s go over what to do once you actually get to the airport.

The first thing you have to do is check that bag. When you get to the counter, you MUST declare that you have a firearm. Once you say that, the person behind the counter will give you a small firearms declaration card to fill out. It varies from airline to airline, but it usually will have you fill out your basic flight and personal information, and it also makes you sign a disclaimer stating you followed what I just told you to do. You’re welcome.

The card will be placed on to, or taped to your case. Depending on the airline, they may do a visual inspection of the case, or firearm right there. After, or sometimes only, your luggage, or you and your luggage, will be escorted to the oversized baggage area.

There they will either x-ray your luggage and say you’re fine, or some places (like Atlanta) will perform a visual and manual inspection. It could take some time, so make sure you get there early.

If TSA discovers a problem, they may ask you to unlock the case, or if it’s not a TSA lock, they may cut it open, ask questions later, and your firearm won’t be able to fly because your case isn’t locked anymore.

If you followed the steps above, you should be fine. Your bag will be checked in from there, and you’re ready to get on your flight. When you land, just pick up your luggage like normal.

There you have it. Just follow those steps, and you’ll be set. Again, call your airline or the TSA if you are unsure. I’m just a hobbyist. Safe travels, everyone!

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Friday, January 20, 2017

Quick and Dirty Review: Smith and Wesson M&P9 M2.0















In terms of striker fired handguns, there are quite a bit on the market. The ones that come to mind first are Glock, XD, and M&P. Smith and Wesson’s has been out for a while, and it seems every other manufacturer is on at least their second generation. Well, Smith and Wesson finally introduced the M&P M2.0.

While the name is pretty boring, the pistol is not. I have, carry, and love the first generation M&P. Needless to say, when I heard about the second generation, I called up Southern Guns, LLC and asked them to hook me up with one to test, because I needed it to happen. No surprise, it’s a pretty damn good firearm.

Let’s cover some of the basics of it: 

Model: M&P9 M2.0 (No thumb safety)
Caliber: 9mm
Capacity: 17+1
Barrel Length: 4.25”
Overall Length: 7.4”
Weight: 24.7oz
Action: Striker fired
Materials: Polymer frame, stainless steel slide
Sights: Fixed three dot
MSRP: $599 

Ships With: 
  • Plastic hard case
  • Two, seventeen round magazines
  • Trigger lock 
  • Four backstraps (S, M, ML, Large)
  • Manual 
  • Lifetime warranty (for the original owner) 

It’s the same M&P that we all know and love, but with some good improvements. The slide has forward serrations for press checks. I don’t see the need for them, and I think they are kind of gimmicky since there is a witness hole in the barrel like the previous generation. There is more metal added to the polymer frame, a trigger with an audible reset, and improved grips. Let’s go into some more detail, shall we? 

Size and Carrying

This is a full sized firearm. However, when I carry my first gen, I can easily conceal it in my Tread Softly Concealment inside-the-waistband holster. This second generation one DOES FIT in the holster for the old one. Now, since this holster does have a leather backing, and it is dependent on your body for retention of the firearm, I can’t say the M&P9 M2.0 will fit in ALL holsters, but it should. Not much dimension wise has changed. If you are used to full sized weight and size, this one is no problem. I originally carried a full sized 1911, so while this is wider, it’s still very manageable. 

Looks and Feel

When I did my review on the Springfield XD Mod2, I got a lot a crap from you guys because I said it was ugly. Well, it was/is. “Grip Zone” is plastered on the side. Well, the M&P9 M2.0 is sexy. The best part is the feel. The textured grip is insanely awesome.

I put Traction Grips on all of my firearms that I can, and I love them, but the texture on this new model from the factory is perfect. It’s what a “professional” would go to a gunsmith and pay extra for. Each backstrap has the same texture. I cannot say enough good things about the grip, and Smith and Wesson didn’t even have to say where you needed to hold it. I miss the beaver tail that is no longer on the rear of the frame, but it’s all good.

Features

As I mentioned above, this comes with two 17 round magazines. The old ones will work in the M2.0. There is the option for a thumb safety. I opted to test one without, so I can’t give my comments on what one with a safety is like. The four backstraps are textured and easy to change out. The sights are basic, but work. 

The trigger is somewhat different. There is now an audible reset, but it seems stagey. My old M&P’s trigger was gritty, and had no audible reset. Honestly, I never cared, because I grew up shooting 1911s, and frequently shoot my SCCY CPX-2. To me, I just want it to go bang. This new one was right out of the box, so maybe the staginess will go away, but there was no grit like the original. The reset was nice, if you’re into that.

Firing

Firing this thing is a dream. It’s full sized, and only a 9mm. Recoil is very manageable, and the trigger pull is predictable. Again, the pull is stagey, but once it hits that last stage, you know when it will fire. 

The sights are your average three-dot style, but they work well. The magazines seemed quite challenging to get the first round in for each, but I don’t have that problem with my old ones, so I just assume it’s because they are new. 

Warranty

Smith and Wesson does offer a lifetime warranty, but it is only for the original owner. There is a slight way around this. When you get your Smith and Wesson, you can register it online through their website, and that is how you can get a warranty claim started. If the original owner never fills it out, well, you look like the original owner when you do. Anyway, I used the warranty once when my slide rusted on my old M&P, and it was a good service. As expected, here is a full write up: Smith and Wesson Warranty

Disassembly

Taking this gun apart is very simple. It is just like the last model: remove the magazine, pull the slide back, rotate the takedown lever down, release the slide and pull the trigger, and after the slide comes off, take out the spring and barrel.

Overall

All in all, this gun is a winner. Feels fantastic, shoots well, and is a good continuation of the M&P lineup. I do miss the beavertail! 

Concealability: 9 out of 10
Capacity: 10 out of 10
Accuracy: 9 out of 10
Reliability: 9 out of 10 (only seen the M&P45 jam)
Warranty Service: 8 out of 10 (original owner only)
Price: 8 out of 10 

That’s all for now. Don’t forget to check out the video review that includes shooting. Like what you see? Don’t forget to subscribe to our YouTube channel for more. Also be sure to like us on Facebook, and follow us on Twitter! You’ll be glad you did. Trust me!















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