The Holidays are a time of happiness, with many considering this time of year to be quite magical. The stress of activities and gift giving, however, sometimes puts a damper on the joy. That’s why folks occasionally need to do something for themselves during the silly season. And while there are lots of ways to reduce stress, GunBroker.com would like to remind folks that happiness is a belt fed rifle. Or maybe it’s any full auto or possibly a suppressor. Short barrel rifles and shotguns are kind of cool as well. OK, let’s go with happiness is a National Firearm Act item. There is no doubt that emptying a magazine in two to three seconds makes people smile. What’s best is that NFA items are completely legal, just time consuming and expensive to obtain. So, during this time of gift giving, give yourself a gift from the Gunbroker.com NFA Wish list, and learn the joys of NFA.
Popular with both military and law enforcement, the Heckler & Kock MP5 is a delayed blowback 9mm with a selector switch. This gun is so popular, in fact, that there are numerous clones on the market, including semi-auto versions. While it comes in a few different models, the most famous features an iconic ring front sight and slim handguard, called the MP5A1. Numerous special forces groups have used the MP5 over the last six decades, including the Green Berets in Vietnam. The MP5’s popularity comes from its design, along with is easy-to-handle chambering. Few full auto firearms have its reliability and control under fire.
Based on Eugene Stoner’s AR-15 design, the M16 earned its reputation in the jungles of Vietnam, particularly the M16A1, which replaced the M14 in 1969. This new model incorporated several improvements, such as forward assist, chrome-lined barrel, better flash hider and reinforcement around the magazine release; many soldiers complained about the earlier versions. Some of the features readily apparent on the M16 is the triangular forearm and the carry handle that also served as the rear sight. The M16, and its variants, has served the U.S. Military for the past 50 plus years. It is, however, about to be replaced by the U.S. Army. This doesn’t change how much this rifle has affected history.
One of the best-known machine guns in history is the M60. Most of this because of its use in countless movies and television shows. However, its power, rate of fire and size made it popular with soldiers, who nicknamed it the “Pig.” The U.S. military adopted this belt-fed rifle in 1957. It has served in every military branch, and it continues to serve the militaries of U.S. allies. The M60 is heavy and really eats ammunition, which is why it typically took two soldiers to run it. In fact, some units used three people, mostly to carry additional ammo. The M60 had several benefits in combat, such as its caliber (.308 Win.) and the fact that it could be shoulder fired if needed. Eventually, the military replaced the M60, but those wanting a powerful piece of history can still find one; it won’t be cheap but it would look great on ramparts.
A lot of people don’t understand what the NFA means by “destructive device.” The Cobray Street Sweeper, that’s what it means. The Cobray is a variant of the Armsel Striker designed in Africa by Hilton R. Walker. Several agencies, particularly in Africa, still use this shotgun because of the vast amount of power it provides. Using a cylinder, similar to a revolver, the Cobray holds 12 rounds of 12-gauge ammunition, meaning it could clean out a street pretty quick, hence the name. The original design used an interesting clockwork spring that activated upon releasing the trigger to line up another round. However, in 1989, Walker redesigned the gun with a cocking mechanism. In the U.S., the marketing campaign around this gun would trigger people of today, which might have led to the ATF classifying the Cobray Street Sweeper a destructive device in 1994.
Kevin Brittingham, the inventor of the Honey Badger, is a pretty smart guy. His ideas on improving the AR platform, brought to life a new gun and a caliber highly desired by shooters, particularly those of the special forces variety. Brittingham was the mind behind .300 AAC Blackout. He wanted a rifle that was intuitive to operators while providing better knockdown with a shorter barrel at subsonic levels that worked well with suppressors. He succeeded with the Honey Badger. This short barrel rifle is light, just over 4 pounds, and features the same basic controls as an AR. The Honey Badger was also the catalyst surrounding the pistol brace fight with the ATF.
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Hollywood has long promoted the idea of a shotgun suppressor. However, SilencerCo is the first to crack the code with the Salvo 12. Two of the problems the company faced was attaching it to a shotgun and having the wad pass through the baffles properly. Shotguns have a lot more pressure than handguns and rifles, and few would want to thread a shotgun’s muzzle. The last problem was making it large enough to reduce sound to safe levels while keeping it small enough to swing on targets. SilencerCo solved these by attaching the Salvo 12 via the choke and the wad with rails. Weight and noise are controlled by making it user adjustable from 12 inches down to 6 inches in length. Longer equals quieter but heavier. In any case, the Salvo 12 makes shooting a shotgun a whole lot quieter.
While suppressors are fairly expensive to begin with, that extra $200 tax stamp for each and every one really makes the process a real pain. Therefore, folks should consider purchasing a multi-caliber suppressor, such as the YHM R9. The company designed the R9 around 9mm PCCs. However, the company wanted to provide budget-friendly suppressor with versatility. In addition to 9mm, the R9 can handle being attached to rifles up to .308 Win., which includes .300 Blackout, .350 Legend and even 5.56×45.
Rimfires are a blast to shoot. So, it stands to reason that adding a suppressor simply adds to the fun. The Dead Air Mask fits from .17 HMR up to 5.7×28, and is rated full auto in .22 LR. Constructed of a titanium tube with stainless-steel baffles, the Mask measures just over 5 inches in length and 1 inch in diameter, weighting a mere 6.6 ounces. It is also completely user serviceable, so rimfire rounds don’t weigh it down with dirt and grime.
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