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Blue Force Gear Sponsors Annual USASOC Urban Assaulter Challenge – Unveils Long Awaited MARCO Marking Stick Dispenser

Thursday, September 21st, 2017

POOLER, Ga., Sept. 20, 2017 – Blue Force Gear®, the designer and manufacturer of the world’s finest weapon slings and tactical equipment, will sponsor the United States Army Special Operations Command’s (USASOC) 2nd Annual Urban Assaulter Challenge slated for Monday, September 25, through Friday, September 29, at Fort Bragg, N.C. USASOC hosts this event so teams can put their training to the test and see who is the ultimate winner.

As a Top Level Sponsor, Blue Force Gear will be showcasing its new product lineup, including the newest product, MARCO™, designed to provide a more efficient, effective and compact way to carry marking lights for room clearing. Director of Product Development Stephen Hilliard will be in attendance at the on-range vendor display located on Range 37 to demonstrate products and answer questions.

With the MARCO marking stick dispenser, Blue Force Gear has revolutionized room clearing in tactical operations. Users can save critical preparation time during pre-mission tasks by not having to unwrap, tape, and bundle marking sticks. The dispenser design makes it simple for users – simply open the foil package with the pre-loaded dispenser, insert the MARCO dispenser inside of the belt or MOLLE pouch and proceed with the mission. The design provides a very low profile and prevents the accidental activation of a marking stick, which can cause unwanted light.

“We’re always proud to participate in events where we can work alongside the members of Special Operations Forces, one of our primary customer groups, and engage them on feedback about our products” said Stephen Hilliard, Director of Product Development for Blue Force Gear. “Our goal is to provide the armed forces with the best possible equipment to help fulfill their missions. We take their feedback seriously and we’re proud to support those vying for the title of “Best Assaulter” during the Urban Assaulter Challenge.”

About USASOC Urban Assaulter Challenge:
The USASOC Urban Assaulter Challenge places twelve, four-man teams against each other in a series of ten combat-oriented events that challenge their skill level, training methods and overall knowledge unique to the Special Operations Assaulter.

Blue Force Gear to Showcase New Tactical Equipment At NTOA Tactical Conference & Trade Show

Wednesday, September 20th, 2017

POOLER, Ga., Sept. 15, 2017 – As the designer and manufacturer of the world’s finest weapon slings and tactical equipment, Blue Force Gear is preparing to showcase two of its most popular products at the NTOA Tactical Operations Conference & Trade Show in Phoenix, Arizona. From Sept. 24-29 at the Sheraton Grand Phoenix, show attendees will be able to see firsthand why the MicroTKN!™ and MARCO® are the two newest must-have products in tactical operations.

The MicroTKN! is the smallest version of the Trauma Kit NOW!™ and is designed to hold essential lifesaving medical supplies in a small, easy-to-carry pack that takes up minimal space and carries a low profile. Blue Force Gear’s goal with the MicroTKN! is to change the mindset of everyday carry to include trauma care, keeping tactical operators prepared for even the most drastic of situations. The kit comes in three options: basic, advanced and unfilled.

With the MARCO marking stick dispenser, Blue Force Gear has revolutionized room clearing in tactical operations with a more efficient, effective and compact way to carry marking lights. Users save critical time during preparation during pre-mission tasks by not having to unwrap, tape, and bundle chem sticks. The dispenser design makes it simple for users – simply open the Mylar package with the pre-loaded dispenser, insert the MARCO dispenser inside of the belt or MOLLE holster and proceed with the mission. The design provides a low profile and prevents the accidental activation of a chem stick, which can cause unwanted light.

Product demonstrations and seminars for the MicroTKN! and MARCO will be available at the Blue Force Gear booth number 811. Attendees will also have the chance to learn from educational courses and try interactive exhibits during the expo.

“We’re dedicated to providing the best tactical gear possible to law enforcement nationwide,” said Ashley Burnsed, CEO of Blue Force Gear. “The NTOA conference is a great opportunity to meet with our customers and we’re looking forward to showing them some of our next-generation gear from 2017.”

Find Blue Force Gear’s new products and current lineup at booth number 811.

NDIA Names Stew Magnuson Editor of National Defense Magazine

Tuesday, September 19th, 2017


ARLINGTON, VA — National Defense, a business and technology magazine and website published by the National Defense Industrial Association, named Stew Magnuson as its new editor in chief on Sept. 14.

National Defense has been in publication since 1920 when it began its run as Army Ordnance Magazine.

“As the magazine approaches its 100th anniversary, there is no shortage of vital topics to cover,” Magnuson said. Not least among them is whether the military can take advantage of advances in robotics, artificial intelligence, advanced manufacturing, information technology, and other rapidly evolving fields while being hampered by an antiquated acquisition system, he said.

“Readers can expect in-depth reporting and analysis on this important question,” he said.

Magnuson joined the magazine as a senior writer in 2005 and was named managing editor a year later. He has served as acting editor since April.

Before joining the magazine, Magnuson was a Washington-based reporter for Education Daily, Space News and Kyodo News. He spent several years reporting in Asia, working for newspapers such as the Asahi Evening News in Tokyo and The Cambodia Daily in Phnom Penh. He contributed articles to Reuters, the Christian Science Monitor and South China Morning Post.

Born and raised in Omaha, Neb., he is a graduate of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.

In his spare time, he writes nonfiction books focusing on the history of the American West. Among his works, Magnuson is the author of “The Death of Raymond Yellow Thunder: And Other True Stories from the Nebraska-Pine Ridge Border Towns,” which was named the Nebraska’s 2009 nonfiction book of the year and recently made a list of the state’s most important literary works.

He also penned “Wounded Knee 1973: Still Bleeding,” an account of the Wounded Knee incident, and one novel, “The Song of Sarin,” based on his experience living in Tokyo during the 1995 subway gas attack.

More recently, he produced a series of three books focusing on the history found along U.S. Highway 83, “The Last American Highway: The Dakotas;” The Last American Highway: Nebraska-Kansas-Oklahoma;” and “The Last American Highway in Texas.”

SilencerCo Releases First-Ever 50-State-Legal Suppressed Muzzleloader

Tuesday, September 19th, 2017


WEST VALLEY CITY, UT – September 19, 2017 – For the first time since the National Firearms Act (NFA) was created in 1934, civilians can enjoy suppressed shooting in all 50 states with SilencerCo’s latest innovation: the integrally suppressed Maxim 50 muzzleloader. In addition, this product can be purchased right now on the web with no regulation (no 4473, no tax stamp, no photographs or fingerprints) at and be shipped immediately to the purchaser with few exceptions*.


Residents in the 42 states that allow civilian ownership of silencers have to pay a $200 tax, fill out forms, send in photos, submit to fingerprinting, and wait months for the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (BATFE) and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) to review their forms and check their backgrounds—just to acquire an inherently-harmless product. With all the hoops to jump through, it’s no surprise that many Americans have difficulty committing the time or money it takes to save their hearing. Citizens may have had their Second Amendment rights suppressed, but innovation cannot be silenced.


With the invention of the Maxim 50, SilencerCo has created a product that is 100% legal for civilian ownership in all 50 states while providing hearing-saving suppression at a reasonable price point. How is this possible? By paying very close attention to the law.


The BATFE defines a silencer as a “device for silencing, muffling, or diminishing the report of a portable firearm . . .” By that definition, a silencer is only a silencer if it can attach to a firearm. The Maxim 50 is built on the base of a Traditions™ Vortek Strikerfire Muzzleloader. For those who know muzzleloaders, you’ll also know that they are not considered firearms by the BATFE but are instead antique firearms, a definition and difference that is very distinct. Because of this, a moderator that is permanently affixed to a muzzleloader is not legally defined as a silencer, since it does not attach to a firearm. With this realization, the Maxim 50 was born.


“It took a lot of creativity to arrive at this solution,” said Josh Waldron, SilencerCo CEO and Co-Founder. “We have been working on this product for three years, with most of that time spent waiting on a determination from the Technology Branch of the BATFE as to how this product would be classified. As soon as we received official word that it wouldn’t be considered or regulated as a silencer, we got to work on bringing the Maxim 50 to customers across the country.”

SilencerCo expects the Maxim 50 to be a hit not only with the NFA-loving crowd, but also with hobbyists and hunters. In many states, muzzleloader hunting begins days (sometimes weeks) before standard rifle season, giving hunters using this platform an edge. But this edge does come with caveats – antique firearms are usually loud, have lots of recoil, and the shooter has to battle the thick cloud of black powder smoke billowing from the barrel as they try to see if their shot connected with their game. The Maxim 50 solves all of the issues experienced by muzzleloader shooters while also drastically reducing the resulting smoke by more than two-thirds, allowing hunters to see the location of their shot and track their game.

SilencerCo is honored to finally be able to bring suppressed shooting to its customers across the country, especially in states such as California, Illinois, and New York, where civilian ownership of silencers is not currently allowed.
To see more on the Maxim 50 visit

* Visit SilencerCo’s website for a complete list of shipping restrictions.

AeroVironment Enhances Its Family of Small Unmanned Aircraft Systems with M1/M2/M5 Compatible Digital Data Link (DDL) Products

Tuesday, September 19th, 2017

QUANTICO, VA at Modern Day Marine, Sept. 19, 2017 – AeroVironment, Inc. (NASDAQ: AVAV), a global leader in unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) for both military and commercial applications, today announced that it has delivered M1/M2/M5-compatible Raven® and Puma™ AE unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) to two DoD customers, with more orders and deliveries scheduled. In addition, the company will begin taking orders in December 2017 for M1/M2/M5-configured Wasp® AE micro air vehicles (MAV) for delivery in spring 2018.

“Integrating the new M1/M2/M5 radio frequencies into our family of small UAS gives our customers the ability to seamlessly and securely conform to the Department of Defense‘s new frequency spectrum allocation and proceed with certainty,” said David Sharpin, vice president of AeroVironment’s Tactical UAS Business Unit. “By combining all three frequency bands in the same transceiver module, we’ve made it easy for users to select the frequency band associated with the part of the world in which they are operating without having to swap any hardware.”

AeroVironment today also unveiled its new Pocket DDL™ AE, a rugged, all- environment, next generation, secure digital video and data receiver that also integrates the new M1/M2/M5 radio frequency spectrum. The all-environment design of AeroVironment’s new Pocket DDL AE makes it significantly more rugged than its predecessor by offering a fully waterproof package (immersible to three feet) that supports tactical operations in a wide range of environmental conditions and difficult urban terrain.


Designed for simplicity and ease of use, the Pocket DDL AE facilitates rapid and secure access to a small UAS Digital Data Link (DDL) network. Each sleek unit has no exterior buttons or displays and is completely controlled through an App. Pocket DDL AE has a standard Glenair® Mighty-Mouse connector, making it compatible with the Army‘s Net Warrior system, so dedicated cables for Pocket DDL are not necessary. It can operate from any power supply, providing between 5 and 32 volts DC.

Pocket DDL AE implements an open-systems architecture, using a USB interface and XML messaging for control of the radio functions. This enables apps designed for special purposes, such as tactical operations, search and rescue, asset tracking, long- range communications, mission command, and targeting to use Pocket DDL AE to employ small UAS to help perform their tasks more effectively.


“Combined with the M1/M2/M5 upgrade to our Pocket DDL AE, this provides greatly enhanced capability across our entire family of small UAS product line for improved tactical operations,” Sharpin said. “This example demonstrates our ongoing commitment to upgrade our Family of Systems products and provide new capabilities to our existing and new customers around the world.”

AeroVironment will announce additional upgrades to its market-leading Family of Unmanned Aircraft Systems during the Association of the Army’s Annual Meeting next month. Celebrates Website Launch with M-11 Machine Gun Giveaway

Tuesday, September 19th, 2017


September 2017 – ( – MACHINEGUNCENTRAL.COM is excited to give you a once in a lifetime opportunity to win a FULLY TRANSFERABLE M11 MACHINE GUN! is announcing the launch of their brand new, online classified website. The focus of this site is exclusively on Class 3 NFA items. In celebration of this occasion, found it fitting to give away a transferable machine gun – an M-11. “There are only approximately 186,000 transferable machine guns legally registered with the ATF today,” says Jack Casey, Accounts Manager for “To actually have the chance to win one of these rare items is special.” (MGC) provides the perfect tool for buyers and sellers from across the U.S. to connect and network with each other. MGC’s creators have taken years of knowledge and experience to build a platform that will address many of the shortcomings of other NFA websites. For sellers, MGC will put their listings in front of more qualified buyers than any other source. As a buyer, customers will be able to shop the largest machine gun selection anywhere. While MGC’s clean and simplistic design is easy to use, the website state of the art security. This cyber security meets the highest standards regarding data and encryption to date.

One of the most critical aspects in selling guns online is having good pictures. For this reason, the website is equipped with the best photo generator available. This allows many high-resolution images to be uploaded quickly and efficiently.

MachineGunCentral M11

As a special introductory offer, and for a limited time, all listings on MGC are free. “We want people to see first-hand what a valuable resource will be for them.” Says Casey. “We know they will have an excellent experience buying or selling their class 3 items. To have the chance to win an M-11 is an amazing bonus.”

To enter for your chance to win the M11, go to with your NFA item, create an account, and list the item(s) to sell on The contest ends on December 31st, 2017.

For more information, visit or give them a call at 1(866) 596-8033.

Persistent Systems Awarded $8.9 million Radio Contract for US Army WMD Teams

Tuesday, September 19th, 2017

New York, N.Y. — Persistent Systems, LLC (“Persistent”), a leader in Mobile Ad hoc Networking (MANET) Technology and developer of Wave Relay®, announced today that it was awarded an $8.9 million contract award to provide more than 950 MPU5 radios to the U.S. Army National Guard’s Weapons of Mass Destruction Civil Support Teams (WMD-CSTs).

The contract is in support of the U.S. Army’s Unified Command Suite (UCS) Program of Record, which is managed by the Joint Program Executive Office for Chemical Biological Defense (JPEO-CBD). The UCS program aims to provide communications interoperability between military emergency response elements and Federal, State, and Local authorities on the scene of an incident.


The Unified Command Suite is a self-contained communications vehicle that can either be driven to or be air-lifted via a C130 to an incident location. The MPU5 radios enable a high-speed communication network to be established on-the-fly, which empowers CST personnel to operate across the incident area while remaining connected both to the vehicle and to each other.

“Whether at a campaign rally or along a marathon route, National Guard Civil Support Teams run WMD detection operations to keep Americans safe,” said Louis Sutherland, VP of Business Development for Persistent. “That’s why it is so important that they have a robust wireless network.”

The MANET element of Persistent’s solution creates a vast, self-forming, self-healing radio network that does not require outside infrastructure to work. Should a node drop out of the network, sensor data collected by a Civil Support Team member will simply be routed another way. Using the MPU5 also means cutting down on the number of relay radios needed to push signals over and around obstacles.


The MPU5 provides push-to-talk audio, video encoding, and an integrated Android™ computing environment that allows the installation of 3rd party applications. It is a 6W 3×3 MIMO radio which provides extremely long range and throughput exceeding 100 Mbps. These capabilities enable National Guard Civil Support Teams to network their sensors and transmit data collected in the field to the UCS vehicle and then on to a national lab for analysis.

“MIMO radios thrive in urban environments, where standard radios have trouble,” Sutherland said. “This enables the CST personnel to extend their network further from the truck and operate effectively in urban, high-population-density environments that are the most likely targets of an attack.”

Persistent has customers in the Army, Air Force, and Department of Homeland Security.

“Some of our most passionate advocates come from the chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear, and explosives detection community,” Sutherland said. “In fact, our MPU5 radio is already embedded in QinetiQ’s Talon unmanned ground robot which is also used by Civil Support Teams.”

Persistent has already begun delivery of its radios and expects to make another delivery of 500 radios to the Unified Command Suite program this month. The radio integration is being performed by NAVAIR in Patuxent River, Maryland.

Blue Force Gear Showcases New Marco Dispenser At Modern Day Marine Expo

Monday, September 18th, 2017

POOLER, Ga., Sept. 18, 2017 – Blue Force Gear®, the designer and manufacturer of the world’s finest weapon slings and tactical equipment, will showcase its newest product, MARCO™, at this year’s Modern Day Marine Expo on the Marine Corps Base in Quantico, Virginia from Sept. 19-21. MARCO is a marking dispenser which offers a more efficient, effective and compact way to carry marking lights for room clearing.

With the MARCO marking light dispenser, Blue Force Gear has revolutionized room clearing in tactical operations. Users can save critical time during preparation for pre-mission tasks by not having to unwrap, tape, and bundle chem sticks. The dispenser design makes it simple for users – simply open the Mylar package with the pre-loaded dispenser, insert the MARCO dispenser inside of the belt or MOLLE holster and proceed with the mission. The design provides a low profile and prevents the accidental activation of a chem stick, which can cause unwanted light.

“There has been a lot of excitement leading up to the launch of MARCO, at Blue Force Gear and from our customers,” said Stephen Hilliard, Director of Product Development. “We strive to provide the best gear possible and lighten the load that end users must carry on every mission. MARCO will be a game changer in the world of tactical equipment for our armed forces and first responders.”

U.S. Marines will be able to test this product first hand at booth 3010. Blue Force Gear will be showcasing an array of new products and current gear throughout the show.