Door Kickers

Russian ground forces in the Crimea. It looks like the soldier on the left missed the line for newer kit. -- The Guardian Russian ground forces in the Crimea. It looks like the soldier on the left missed the line for newer kit. — The Guardian

With Russian ground forces now in Ukraine’s Crimean territory, we are getting a closer look at Putin’s door kickers. As more news pictures surface on the web, it’s interesting to see how Russian individual kit has evolved – or failed to evolve in many cases.

Many have AK 74s with rail-mounted optics.They’ve got knee pads and hard-knuckle, combat gloves. Their goggles look like they are made for skiing instead of stopping any fragmentation — but I could be wrong. Anyone know anything about their body armor?

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Military.com ran a story today about the U.S. Army fielding new, high-end, mountaineering gear to all infantry brigade combat teams.

The improved kit comes as U.S. forces are preparing to leave Afghanistan after more than a decade of deployments to the rugged, mountainous country. In the past, units have spent their own funds on commercial mountain gear.

This new gear will come in tactical colors and feature gear from proven brands such as Black Diamond, Petzl, MSR and Metolius. Units will receive the gear organized into the High Altitude Mountaineering Kit, the Assault Climber Team Kit and the Snow and Ice Kit — all of which are designed to equip platoon-size units, or up to 40 soldiers, with ropes, ice axes, crampons and other climbing gear certified by the International Mountaineering and Climbing Federation.

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TLB-blackMission First Tactical recently announced a new line of mountable task lights made by Princeton Tec.

The TORCH Backup Light is a low profile, Picatinny mounted light with dual LED’s. It has a recessed pressure pad for easy activation and a power button for simple on/off functions.

“The illumination is low output for signature reduction during patrol, stealth structure search and approach to the target and breaching operations,” MFT officials maintain.

The TORCH Backup Light White has a 10-year storage lifespan, a 12-hour burn time with a 20-lumen bright white output.

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LAS VEGAS – R4 Evolution, a new company with roots in the Special Forces community, has developed new pistol sights designed for a clearer sight picture and faster shots.

The Optimized Duty Sight, or ODS, features multiple horizontal and vertical alignment points.

The base of the front sight is designed to fill a notch that’s cut out of the bottom of the rear sight, so if your sights aren’t aligned you see daylight. There is a white vertical line at the base of the front sight that lines up with a matching vertical line at the base of the rear sight. And the rear sight is equipped with two horizontal lines near the top that line up with the dot on the front sight.

When lined up, these features are designed to draw attention to the front sight.

pistolsights2The ODS designer, a retired Special Forces sergeant major and cofounder of R4E,  describes it as the “crooked-picture-on-the-wall concept. “You walk into the room; you see a crooked picture on the wall, what does your eye automatically want to do? It wants to fix it,” he said at SHOT Show 2014.

The designer didn’t want to be named, but he spent 23 years in the Army’s 7th and 3rd Special Forces Groups and also played a key role in the Special Forces Close Quarter Battle/Urban Operations courses and the Special Operations Target Interdiction Course, now known as Special Forces Sniper Course.

The ODS also features angle facets on the rear sight to allow the shooter greater target visibility while maintaining sight alignment.

Both front and rear sights are designed with a slight reverse slope to help them bite into belts, steering wheels or any edge for racking the slide.

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LAS VEGAS – The competitive nature of SHOT Show is always exciting to behold, but sometimes – it can get a little nasty.

Maxpedition launched a new fixed-blade knife line at the opening of SHOT Show 2014, touching off a dispute between Maxpedition owner Tim Tang and Kevin McClung, who makes Mad Dog Knives.

So it turns out Tang’s new line of inexpensive fixed-blade knives and sheaths, made with tool steel and glass reinforced handles, looks a lot like McClung’s expensive Mad Dog Knives and sheaths.

So much so that McClung wasted no time accusing Tang of copying his designs in the comments section of a Jan. 14 KitUp!, post.

DSC_0490“Tim Tang/Maxpedition has OBVIOUSLY ripped off my sheath designs, as well as many of my trademarked/copyrighted design features on the knives. The assertion that “Tang also designed a universal Kydex sheath for each blade size” is total baloney, as these are BLATANT RIPOFFS of my own sheath designs. His previous use of my name and registered trademarks in his advertising of his knife line is uncompensated and unlawful. Timmy has some explaining to do. His “Passion” is evidently making poor copies of better men’s work. That’s called PLAGIARISM.”

I spoke with Tang after the dispute emerged, and he looked a bit rattled over it.

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DSC_0526Most things made by Crye Precision look high-speed and the tactical clothing and gear maker’s new Six12 rotary-fed, semiautomatic breaching shotgun is no different.

Yes, Crye Precision LLC., the creator of the MultiCam camouflage pattern, showed off its new Six12 12 gauge shotgun at this year’s SHOT Show.

The streamlined package is designed to mount under AR-style rifles and carbines in attempt to solve a problem most breachers face, said Eric Burt, senior design engineer at Crye.

“As soon as the door is breached, he has to get out of the way and transition and get to the back of the stack as they enter the room,” Burt said.  “We wanted to have a shotgun that you can breach doors with attached to your primary weapon so that a breacher can breach the door … then go on in.”

Burt has designed weapons in the past for Advanced Armament Corp. and Magpul Industries. Crye officials hired him to design the Six12.

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LAS VEGAS – Maxpedition, a gear company known for making extremely rugged, tactical packs and bags, is now offering a large line of tough, fixed-blade knives that won’t empty your bank account.

The new knives are available in three sizes and come in a variety of blade styles. They feature hard chrome plated, D2 tool steel blades with full-tang construction.

KitUp!, talked to Maxpedition’s owner Tim Tang about his leap into the fixed-blade world.

“I wanted to use a tool steel; D2 was very attractive because it’s very hard and very tough and it has a higher chrome content than most tool steels so it’s a little bit more corrosion resistant,” said Tang, a long-time knife collector and blade designer before he launched Maxpedition.

“Knives are my passion. Introducing a cutlery line is sort of me coming full circle. Knives got me into the gear industry. I had the opportunity to build really good bags; now I have the opportunity to come back and do my passion.”

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