FN Herstal

Archive for March, 2011

Spray On Dirt? Sure, Why Not

Tuesday, March 29th, 2011

Lance Winslow“, online writer in retirement, came up with an interesting idea for camouflaging large numbers of vehicles quickly. In his article, “Spray on Dirt Research and Development” he suggest, “spray on dirt may be a concept worth research and development dollars.” His argument, which makes sense, is that development of an “arsenal” of simple solutions make fiscal sense in light of the high cost of a single armored vehicle. Specifically, his concept “consists of a unit with a small water tank and filler hose with a mini sump pump attachment [throw one end into a river, well, pool of left over rain water] to apply the sticky solution; the solution is fed into an inline injection on a 1.8 Hp Honda motor or an equivalent AC out put from a diesel generator with a military grade sprayer unit again totally KISS.”

However, I would say that “Lance” doesn’t have much in the way of military experience as in my recollection, tactical vehicles have no trouble collecting mud and dirt on their own. All you have to do is drive them around for a bit. In fact, most Sergeants Major would probably love to have the spray guns described in the proposal if only to clean the vehicles. But maybe a better material than plain old mud might be sprayed on vehicles that suppresses more than just a visual signature or helps deflect the blast of an IED.

LaConte Bold Coffee

Tuesday, March 29th, 2011

LaConte Bold is an espresso dark roast coffee from STG Originals in Chandler, Arizona. It is dedicated to the memory of retired Navy SEAL Dave LaConte who was as killed November 13, 2009 when his vehicle was hit by a roadside IED while supporting US Army operations in the Tangi Valley, Afghanistan. The idea for the coffee came from Dave’s daily ritual of coffee and cigars. In fact, his last email to the proprietor of San Tan Gear sent the day before his passing said “Cheers, Next time you’re having a coffee and cigar, think of me, Bro!”

Now, it’s a great way for all of us to commemorate Dave LaConte’s memory and to also help out our veterans as all proceeds go to various Wounded Warriors charities. Available as Whole Beans or Ground in 1 lbs bags, get yours from www.santangear.com.

Win Magnum Sidewinder HPi Boots from Military Gear Blog

Monday, March 28th, 2011

Our friends over at Military Gear Blog are sponsoring two opportunities to win a pair of Magnum Sidewinder boots. Both contests end Wednesday, March 30 at 10 a.m. CT

1. The first contest is a caption contest on MilitaryGear.com’s Facebook page – http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=185859271458800&set=a.185859268125467.42836.166499460061448&theater The entry with the most “likes” will win.

2. The second contest is on Twitter. To enter, all you have to do is retweet this review – http://militarygear.com/blog/review-magnum-sidewinder-hpi/

ATK Awarded XM25 Contract

Monday, March 28th, 2011

Back in early February we published a story about the deployment of three of the 25mm XM25 Counter Defilade Target Engagement Systems to Afghanistan for a Forward Area Operational Assessment. Word was that the weapons were performing well and the only real question was how to fund additional development of the system.

System developer ATK has announced today that they were awarded a 30 month, $65.8 Million contract for the Engineering and Manufacturing Development Phase by the US Army. EM&D is the next step toward full development and fielding for a program of record. The technology behind the XM25 is impressive. The system includes not only the basic weapon and ammunition but also target acquisition and fire control systems which integrate the thermal sight with direct-view optics, laser rangefinder, compass, fuze-setter, ballistic computer, laser pointer and illuminator.

“The XM25 provides the soldier on the ground a precision weapon to quickly and accurately engage targets behind cover or exposed targets, at ranges and accuracies not seen in today’s small arms,” said Bruce DeWitt, Vice President and General Manager of ATK’s Advanced Weapons Division. “A soldier using basic rifle marksmanship skills can effectively engage targets in less than five seconds while also reducing the chances for collateral damage.”

Interestingly, ATK is referring to the XM25 as the Individual Semi-Automatic Airburst System rather than the Counter Defilade Target Engagement System that we have seen in times past.

In addition to program lead ATK, the team also includes Heckler & Koch and L-3 Brashear.

Rip Shears

Monday, March 28th, 2011

Rip Shears are a new attachment for standard EMT shears that transforms them into a tool that combines the shears with a safety knife and reflex hammer. Designed to attach directly to the handle of most 7-1/4″ shears, it provides a quick means of cutting through loose material and gear in order to access wounds.

Designed by Naval Special Warfare Corpsmen, Rip Shears are Made in the USA and crafted from fiberglass-reinforced nylon that can be autoclaved up to 270 deg F. Additionally, the blades are 440A stainless steel and are treated with a special DLC tungsten coating for increased lubricity. In fact, the coating will extend the life of the blades 4-5 times normal stainless steel. The design is simple and safe to clean with your fingers as well as replace blades. In fact, when you finally do need to change the blades, they are designed in such a manner that they are impossible to install incorrectly.

Rip Shears are offered in three models. The RS-1 is the Ripper unit by itself for installation on your current EMT shears. The RS-2 model combines the Ripper with EMT shears and the RS-3 or “Firefly” version is a Ripper featuring a glow in the dark material for civilian EMTs and flight medics.

A lot of folks are carrying hook knives to cut through webbing but they can be ineffective if the material is slack. With Rip Shears the cutting stroke is a pulling motion, offering a great deal of strength and control which can help to avoid further injuries. Rip Shears have been used on boots, leather jackets, and rigger belts. In fact, this video will give you a great idea of how well it works.

In fact, I had the chance to try them out myself and I am duly impressed. To get yours visit their distributor page www.ripshears.com and be sure to look around while you are there.

More on US Army Anthropometric Survey

Monday, March 28th, 2011

Last year we first mentioned the US Army Anthropometric Survey or ANSUR II being conducted by US Army Natick Soldier System Center. The whole point of the survey is to collect key data pertaining to how our Soldiers are built. This will in turn affect patterning and size tariffing for uniforms and other sized equipment. Americans continue to get bigger. Current data comes from information collected in 1988 but was only derived from Active Army Soldiers whereas the information used for sizing dated from WWII when I joined the Army. Recently, the Natick team collected measurements from 750 Soldiers at Indiana’s Camp Atterbury who are some of the 12,000 Soldiers, including 1,000 aviators, to be scanned from FORSCOM, TRADOC, National Guard Bureau, and First Army demobilization sites. Since the Total Force is so key to operations it is vital that their statistical sample is included in the data.

The survey includes 94 measurements of the body as well as three 3-D scans. The scans are of the whole body, the head and face and a foot. In addition for use in developing equipment, the data will also be used to design vehicle and aircraft interiors.

Additional information can be found at nsrdec.natick.army.mil/ANSURII.

Freedom Hunters

Sunday, March 27th, 2011

We ran across a cool organization called Freedom Hunters this weekend at Bass Pro Shop in Hampton, VA. Bass Pro Shop always has a lot going on during the weekend such as clinics, special sales, celebrity visits and contests.

Freedom Hunters offers the opportunity for military personnel and in particular, wounded veterans to participate in hunting and fishing by partnering with individuals, corporations and land owners to facilitate equipment, transportation, access and most of all companion and mentorship. It’s a great way to offer our nation’s heroes a way to enjoy the outdoors.

Please check out their website to learn more or to donate. www.freedomhunters.org

2011 Crye Precision Catalog

Sunday, March 27th, 2011

For those of you that missed it, this is a digital copy of the catalog handed out at SHOT Show. They ran out of them on the first day! Items are beginning to trickle out to dealers like the Gun Clip.

Crye Precision – 2011 Catalog