Tag Archives: gear

9mm vs .45ACP: Really? Again?

Yes, again. Amongst avid handgun fans the debate between big and slow versus small and fast stretches back over a hundred years now I’d guess. 2011 marked the 100 year anniversary of the Government Model 1911 .45ACP having been adopted by the U.S. Military (even though it existed in 1904) and the 9mm is even older than that. What makes the debate relatively new (and hopefully interesting) is the addition of what I call “compromise calibers”. There are a couple in between the maximum ends of the debate and recently that has been thrust into my consideration almost against my will. Continue reading

SnugPak Sleeping Bag 32 Degree

As the faithful readers of the Blackwater Tactical Weekly know I once spent two weeks in New Orleans on contract to Blackwater. I’m home now and have had a couple of days to contemplate the gear I was issued to use while in N.O.. Certainly, the conditions varied from comfortable to, ah, less-than-comfortable, but the gear I was issued was sufficient to keep me at least able to survive. One of those items was a SnugPak Lite Sleeping Bag. Right on the stuff-sack itself it shows that the bag is rated to 32 degrees for comfortable sleeping, or down to 18 degrees for simple survival.  Continue reading

The Irreplaceable Poncho

When I went into the Army as a Military Policeman in 1982, I was issued half a tent, otherwise called “a shelter half”. When I asked what I was supposed to do with half a tent I was told, “Find a buddy that has a matching half.” Together we made a whole tent. When I went into the Maryland Army National Guard some years later – in a Light Infantry unit – I wasn’t even issued half a tent. I was issued two ponchos, one poncho liner and one sleeping bag. When I asked about shelter I was told to make a “hooch” out of a poncho. Then I was told that the sleeping back was optional in the field. “Fight light; freeze at night.” Oh, joy…  Continue reading