Perfection, a state of completeness and flawlessness, something that only the most conscientious designers and manufactures strive for in their craft. Searching for the perfect tool to solve a multitude of problems, a tool and cartridge combination that goes beyond the norm and fills obvious voids. The quest for perfection is likely more important than attaining it because true perfection, at least in the world of weapons development, would have given us Captain Kirks Phaser years ago, something that go from stun to kill with the flick of a switch and works 100% of the time, and we would have missed all trials and tribulations that have occurred over the centuries.
Of course when we talk of new developments and designs, particularly for tactical or military weapons, what we consistently see are adaptations of Stoner’s original AR platform, after all designers and manufactures are taking advantage of a tried and true weapon design with a well reputed level of reliability and effectiveness. Of course this is not to ever suggest that military weapons or even the AR platform are guiding examples of the apex of weapons design, after all they are not without their problems, but the bulk of research and development has been done and current technology allows companies and users to pretty much adapt an AR to any situation they want, resulting in the bestselling rifle platform in the United States, as well one of the most heavily issued military weapons worldwide. This demand on AR platform rifles has caused countless manufactures to jump on the AR bandwagon, offering a surfeit cavalcade of new and “improved” weapons, each attempting to put their own unique twist on the design. Whether or not they are gas impingement or piston driven, or what side of the argument you find yourself on, the AR platform is a firmly entrenched system in our culture.
Norman Vincent Peale once said “Problems are to the mind what exercise is to the muscles, they toughen and make strong”, and holding to this statement, often times there comes tools that are so well thought out that they reach near perfection in both concept and function. Recently, I had a package show up containing a freshly built rifle from Black Forge Armory, the first of their products I have ever had. I freely admit it, Initially I thought “Oh great another AR”, but shortly after uncrating it I realized that I was holding something different, something unique, something I was going to like greatly. The rifle was fully adorned with common, yet functional Magpul furniture and a lean and sleek Diamondhead VRS™ “T” 15.0” Free- Floating Versa Base hand guard. The rifle is built on one of the beefy Black Forge BF15 receiver sets, and while they speced that it had a hard anodized finish, it is without doubt unlike any government issued weapon I have ever had in my hands, with a shade of black that is so deep and dark I swear I thought it was some form of aftermarket finish. Along with the Black Forge rifle came 1000 rounds of what is destine to be the next big thing in caliber development, .25-45 Sharps. That’s right Sharps! As in the legendary rifle designed by Christian Sharps in 1848, this company, based in Cody Wyoming, is pushing a strong comeback as a mainstream member of the firearms industry and has this new cartridge at the fore front of their efforts. The .25-45 Sharps represents the positive attributes of the 5.56mm, but with increased accuracy and ballistic efficency. While the basic AR is hard to beat for the shear reliability of putting rounds down range, the world has griped and lamented over the virtues, or the vices of the 5.56mm.
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