Ear protection is a must for all shooters, but serious shooters and hunters demand high quality ear protection. Peltor has introduced a new set of muffs that meets and exceeds that demand.
Sophisticated hearing protection for hunters and shooters, from 3M.
The WS Tactical Sport electronic hearing protectors are loaded with features. They are high quality surround sound protectors that block out harmful loud noises but also allow all safe sound to pass through. The quality of normal sound and conversations is so clear you will forget you are wearing them. The next most useful feature is that they are Bluetooth compatible. Simply pair them with your cell phone and from then on any calls, music, text notifications etc. will sound crystal clear in your headset. I tested my set with my iPhone 4 and to answer a call simply press the Bluetooth button on the muffs while you leave your phone in your pocket. I also found it very useful to make voice memos on my phone through my headset while I was at the range. Also using them to listen to music while mowing was an added feature.
The muffs come with a rechargeable AAA battery system that has never failed with only a few charges over the past few months, battery life is rated for approximately 12-20 hours per charge or alkaline set. The talking menu has an electronic female voice and is easy to use. The muffs wore comfortably and have a low profile. This Peltor model has a 20 DB reduction rating, comes with surround sound mics, speech mic, dual audio inputs (3.5mm and J22), orange and green colored covers, and are completely collapsible for storage in your range and hunting bag. These will hit the market this fall. Find out more at www.3M.com/OCCsafety
Blue Wave Evolution 1902
Build boats for decades on end, and youll learn a thing or two. Bring multiple generations into the mix, and youll also see some new ideas pop up. The net result? Just look at the Blue wave Evolution 1902. Blue Wave is a family-owned company with multi-generational talent, and this boat brings the best of the old and the new.
The Evolution 1902 has the best attributes of a bay boat. It can run in under a foot of water, is laid out strictly for fishing, and can handle open bay waters. But it also has some perks that result from new ideas, like the huge AFD cockpit scupper drain system which wont clog up, an oversized Pro Series livewell drain system, and a 45-degree entry anti-hangup bow.
Blue Wave Evolution 1902 Photo: PARKS MFG.
Then, consider the hand of experience. The boats construction reeks of knowledge, with touches like the use of 100-percent composites, a through-bolted rubrail, overboard-draining insulated fishboxes, Deutsche watertight electrical connections, and stainless-steel hardware. This is a fully-linered model, too, so it looks good both inside and out. Naturally, the boat also has full upright foam floatation built-in, along with some smart touches like a removable windshield, lockable rodboxes, and closed-molded hatches that are finished on both sides and fitted with gaskets.
Blue Wave is known for building die-hard fishboats, so the extensive list of fishing features should come as no surprise. It has not one but two livewells, one in the stern and another in front of the console. Its pre-wired for a trolling motor, and a mounting surface for that motor is pre-molded into the bow. And options Blue Wave offers on the Evolution include a built-in tacklebox, and an oxygenation system for the livewell.
The boat is 192" long, has a 96" beam, and weighs in at 1,305-lbs. Maximum capacity is seven, and you can put up to 150 horses on the transom. Check out www.bluewave.com.
Game Changer from Streamlight
Weapon mounted lights are a must for tactical and varmint hunting rifles. For a while the best option was to simply mount a tactical flashlight to your rifle, but Streamlight has introduced a complete game changer with the new TLR1s-HP model.
The proven TLR series have been known for their reliability, brightness and compact design. The new HP model pushes the envelope. HP stands for "high power" and its no joke. The polished deep dish parabolic reflector produces an amazingly bright and long range beam that reaches over 400 yards. Upon mounting it to my VLTOR AR rifle, I stepped out on my porch that evening to light up the forest. To my amazement I actually spotted a doe out at 200 yards within seconds. Had it been a standard flashlight of the past, I would have never seen anything that far or that clearly.
The TLR1s-HP weighs only 5 ounces and boasts of a C4 LED 200 lumen light that has over a 50,000-hour lifetime, and runs 1.75 hours on two 3v CR123A lithium batteries. It has a simple and solid Picatinny rail mounting system and the activation switch has a dual wings which allows the user to turn it on either momentarily or switch to steady on by switching it different directions. It is also available with a remote switch for convenient use when mounted on rifles. The "s" in the TLRs series is an extra tactical strobe function that is activated by tapping the illumination switch or remote.
The TLR1s-HP is a serious rifle light for serious users. If you are looking for a soft white light for close quarters home defense, this might be a bit blinding for it is far too bright. But if you are looking for an affordable rifle mounted, long range tactical and night hunting light that will go the distance, you will not be disappointed. The standard TLR1-HP runs around for $125 and the remote strobe version TLR1s-HP around $150. For more information check out www.streamlight.com or call 1-800-523-7488.
If you like fast cars, fast boats, and even faster fishing reels, Diawa has a new offering youll want to hear about post-haste. The Saltiga Lever Drag Hyper Speed is out, and after turning the crank on this puppy, all I can say is it is indeed FAST!
Hyper Speed models go up to a blistering 7.3:1 ratio, which means that with every crank of the handle, you can zip in 52 inches of line. For speed-jiggers, deep-droppers, and guys who simply like to bring in their fish fast, that simply cant be beat. How did Diawa do it? Credit gears that are helical-cut and are beyond huge.
Otherwise, these reels share the same traits as the Saltigas weve come to know and love. They feature six ball-bearings, an offset handle with a grip that fits comfortably in your palm, a carbon drag system thats super-smooth, machined aluminum side plates and spool, centrifugal casting brakes, and an infinite anti-reverse system. These reels also come with a machined-aluminum rod-clamp, so you know they wont work themselves free of the reel seat no matter how rough you are with them.
Different Hyper Speed models range from 20 pound-class (the SALD 20H S) to the 50 pound class (SALD 50H S). 30, 35, and 40 pound class models are also available. The 20 holds 260 yards of 40-lb. braid and 420 yards of 14 pound mono. With the lever drag set to "full", it can put out 26 pounds of drag. The 50 holds 840 yards of 40 pound braid and 350 yards of 30 pound mono. And with the lever set to full on this big gun, it can put out a fish-crushing 40 pounds of drag.
My opportunity to test these reels came on a very unusual trip. We cruised far offshore, and tried deep-dropping for golden tilefish in 700 of water. At that depth, it can take 15 minutes or more to crank in the line. But the Hyper Speed beat the rest of the crew to the surface, each and every time. That gave me time to rest---and bragging rights---while everyone else was still cranking. For more information, visit www.diawa.com.
Coveralls Has Your Boat Covered
Boats are more to anglers than just a place to keep our fishing tackle. They are a major investment that can cost as much as a nice home (or at least as much as the vehicle that tows it) that care for with particular affection. We flush the engines after use, buy special soaps and polishes to wash the hulls and treat the upholstery. Theyre our babies often much to a spouses chagrin. It is only natural that wed want to protect them as much as we can.
Finding the right way to protect our boats can be tricky. Storing a boat in a garage, shed, or barn doesnt shield the console and seats from build-up of dust, dirt, and grime and commercial storage can be cost-prohibitive for the typical angler. Tarps are an option, but even fitted canvas isnt foolproof, as anyone who has pulled back a cover to discover that Swiss Family Opossum took up residence has discovered. Enter Coveralls.
Boatskinz by Coveralls provide modular protection for boat components. Photo: Coveralls
Coveralls goes by the simple motto of "Protect your stuff!" Their Boatskinz marine covers are an effective means of doing just so. Rather than providing a single cover of material that, well, covers all, they offer a modular system that allows a boat owner to mix and match components to protect different parts of a boat. There are modules to accommodate center consoles, outboards, seats and leaning posts of varying sizes. There is no need to take a boat to a shop to have it measured for a custom-fitted tarp. Instead, one can choose from an array of sizes to mix-match covers to accommodate a specific boat.
I tried a set of Boatskinz for my Teachers Pet, a 20 foot Bay Quest center console with leaning post and 150 horsepower outboard. The covers are made of a lightweight, durable and waterproof material that is 100% UV proof, and reflects 95% of radiant heat critical for preventing vinyl from premature aging and cracking. The covers fit snugly over the console, leaning post, and outboard and drawstrings at the mouths of the covers allowed me to secure them tightly. It took me approximately 5 minutes to apply each cover, and I was able to do without help (have you ever tried putting a tarp onto a boat without help? Its no fun). The silver color of the material looked sharper than the generic blue of canvas, too.
When I removed the covers prior to heading to the boat ramp (Coveralls advises not to travel with the Boatskinz on your boat), all three components were free of accumulated dirt and grit, and the vinyl was cool to the touch. I was impressed.
The true test came during a series of rainstorms that passed through the drought-stricken Rio Grande Valley in September. Separate downpours dumped up to an inch of rain at a time When I checked my boat, which is parked in my driveway, and pulled off the Boatskinz, everything was dry and clean. Again, I had no trouble replacing the covers in short order.
Boatskinz are definitely worth the very reasonable cost of purchasing a set for your boat. Coveralls are also available for motorcycles, ATVs, Jeeps, and motor scooters.