Garden Pesto

| August 23, 2021
Garden Pesto Ready to Eat
Photo Credit: Keith Knoxsville
A Hen and a Drake Green Teal on the truck bed. Not a limit on anything, but a fun morning out.

A garden pesto is a great way to use greens from a garden of mixed greens, herbs, or maybe some overgrown tomatoes. It’s also simple and can use the waste produced from pruning your plants. Making a garden pesto takes about 10 minutes, and is great on pasta or as an addition to a cheese plate. It can be added as a flavoring to hummus, or can even be eaten alone with crackers or pita chips.

The greens can be mixed and matched with whatever you have on hand, or from whatever you can harvest in the garden. It’s also a great use for carrot tops, radish greens, or tomato trimmings that you may not normally use.

If you had always heard tomato leaves, or the leaves of anything in the nightshade family are toxic, and this pesto sounds like a no-no, well fear not because we had the same fears. There are alkaloids present in your everyday veggies, but you could never eat enough of them in one sitting for the alkaloids to be harmful. When it comes to the alkaloids present in tomato leaves, you would need to eat about a pound of tomato leaves to feel any of the toxic effects. Although it will take more than what you’ll ever consume in a single sitting, you can skip the tomato leaves if you are wary, and stick to other greens.

Our recipe uses 2 1/2 cups of greens total, so you can adjust your volumes of greens to exclude tomato leaves if you prefer. The recipe makes about 1 cup of green gold. We use a Cuisinart Stick Blender, but the Ninja BL610 Professional Countertop Blender is also a great option for making a smooth and creamy pesto.

Disclaimer: We can’t guess whether you have an allergy to an ingredient, especially nut or ragweed allergies, or maybe you are actually extra sensitive to a specific alkaloid, so we’ve included a disclaimer. Eat at your own risk, we aren’t responsible for allergic or adverse reactions, injuries, or death occurring from the preparation or consumption of our recipe.

Preparation Time

10 minutes

Cooking Time

0 minutes

Total Time

10 minutes

Servings

1 cup

Garden Pesto

Garden Pesto ingredients ready to be blended together.

Ingredients

1/4 cup toasted walnuts
1/2 cup grated parmasean cheese
3 garlic cloves
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup basil
1/2 cup radish greens
1/2 cup tomato greens
1 cup kale

Directions

  1. Grating 1/2 cup parmasean cheese
  2. Chop greens small enough to fit in a food processor
  3. Use a food processor to blend all ingredients until smooth.

Notes

It tastes great, it looks great, and it reduces vegetable scraps and garden waste. Let us know what you think of it.

Tags: , | Comments

What is the Best Motion Dove Decoy in 2021?

| August 15, 2021
Mojo Voodoo Dove Decoy In Tall Grass
Photo Credit: Keith Knoxsville
A Hen and a Drake Green Teal on the truck bed. Not a limit on anything, but a fun morning out.

In the world of motion dove decoys, there are only a couple of good options, and while most are spinners, there is at least one that is a little bit unique. We decided to test and review the 2 most well-known spinning wing decoys, the MOJO Outdoors Voodoo Dove Decoy and the Lucky Duck Lucky Dove HD Decoy, as well as the unique flapping wing motion decoy, the Lucky Duck Rapid Flyer Dove Decoy. We put them to the test in the field and chose the best one for the 2021 dove season.

|||

If you are looking at spinners, then you’ll split hairs choosing between the Mojo Outdoors Voodoo Dove Decoy and the Lucky Duck Lucky Dove HD Decoy. The choice comes down to preference. With the Voodoo you get a slightly more solid construction and an oversized decoy body, but it vibrates during operation, and you may wish it had a taller stand.

The Lucky Dove HD gives you vibration-free operation and a slightly more natural-looking decoy. However, the build quality may leave you a little underwhelmed.

There really are no losers on our list. The Rapid Flyer, while not great at attracting doves from afar, does a good job enticing them into a decoy spread when they are nearby. It was our last choice if you were to only use one motion decoy, where a spinner is favorable. However, situationally the Rapid Flyer is a very effective tool, and if you are deploying it on an old dairy, or other place with lots of nearby doves and pigeons, it’s the perfect tool.

Tags: , , | Comments

Lucky Duck Lucky Dove Decoy

| August 12, 2021
Lucky Duck Lucky Dove Decoy
Photo Credit: Keith Knoxsville
A Hen and a Drake Green Teal on the truck bed. Not a limit on anything, but a fun morning out.
Name | Lucky Dove Decoy HD
Brand | Lucky Duck
Warranty | 1 Year Mfg Defect
Battery | 4 AA
Battery Life | 12+ Hours
Operation | Single Speed
Power | On/Off Switch
Size | Realistic/Oversized
Motion | Spinner
Stand | 3 Piece 44 inches
Price | $29.99

The Lucky Duck Lucky Dove HD Decoy is one of only a couple motion dove decoys available to dove hunters. It’s a traditional spinning wing design, and does exactly what others do, but we wanted to see how it stacks up.

First Impressions

Our first impressions of the Lucky Dove were that it is fairly realistic, has an especially nice flaring tail, it is less oversized than other decoys, but not super large. It is however a little bit bulky in the shoulders.

Unlike the Lucky Duck Rapid Flyer, the Lucky Dove does not feel chintzy. It doesn’t seem like it will need to be babied in and out of the field, but it certainly doesn’t feel like a tank either. The Lucky Dove lacks the solid, and durable feel of the MOJO Outdoors Voodoo Dove Decoy.

The Lucky Dove includes a tall 44 inch stand that is very similar to the stands used in their waterfowl spinners but with a lighter weight construction and smaller diameter tube. Like their waterfowl spinners, the Lucky Dove stand utilizes a bungee to secure the decoy. We actually happen to like this, as it makes decoys fast and easy to secure and does not rely on a sticky pressure fit with the stand.

Lucky Duck Lucky Dove Decoy Tail Design

The Lucky Duck Lucky Dove Decoy has a nice tail design, and decent color.

In The Field

Deploying the 44 inch stand and securing the Lucky Dove to the top of it is a breeze. The height gives the decoy plenty of elevation to be very visible above tall grasses and thick bushes.

Again, the bungee mount system is fast, convenient, and makes setup easy, it also ensures no stuck decoy during cleanup. Magnetic wing attachments are the defacto industry standard, so it’s no surprise that the Lucky Duck Lucky Dove uses them. The Lucky Dove wings install quickly and securely. The wings are an interesting shape though. Unlike the short fat leaf shape used by the MOJO Outdoors on the Voodoo Dove Decoy, the Lucky Dove uses a longer more tapered shape.

The Lucky Dove has a good wing spinning speed, and even with the more tapered wing shape, the wings have an attractive flicker. Albeit maybe not as ‘attractive’ as the flicker produced by the wider wing of the MOJO decoy, the Lucky Dove was still effective at getting the attention of doves, and brought them into reasonable shooting distances.

Lucky Duck Lucky Dove Decoy Narrow Wings

Lucky Duck Lucky Dove Decoy uses an interesting extra wide and somewhat narrow wign shape.

Conclusion

The Lucky Duck Lucky Dove HD Decoy is an effective motion decoy. It attracts pass-over doves even at a distance, includes a tall stand and a convenient bungee mounting system, and it also looks good. While we feel that the Lucky Dove HD's overall construction could be better, and durability may be a concern after a couple of seasons of use, neither of those criticisms we had of the Lucky Dove HD take away from its performance. At $29.99 the Lucky Dove HD is a good value, but for those wanting a more durable construction, it may be worth taking a look at the competition.

Realism | 4.1/5 |
Effectiveness | 4.1/5 |
Quality | 3.9/5 |
Battery Life | 4.2/5 |
Value | 4.0/5 |
Overall | 4.0/5 |
Tags: , , | Comments

MOJO Outdoors Voodoo Dove Decoy

| August 10, 2021
Mojo Voodoo Dove Decoy
Photo Credit: Keith Knoxsville
A Hen and a Drake Green Teal on the truck bed. Not a limit on anything, but a fun morning out.
Name | Voodoo Dove Decoy
Brand | MOJO Outdoors
Warranty | 90 Day Mfg Defect
Battery | 4 AA
Battery Life | 16 Hours
Operation | Single Speed
Power | On/Off Switch
Size | Realistic/Oversized
Motion | Spinner
Stand | 3 Piece 36 inches
Price | $29.99

The MOJO Outdoors Voodoo Dove Decoy is one of the very few motion dove decoy options available to dove hunters, and it may just be the best one out there. We picked one up and put it to the test alongside other motion decoys, to see where it stands.

First Impressions

At first glance, the Voodoo Dove Decoy is fairly realistic for a decoy, with nice coloration, albeit a little oversized, broad in the shoulders, and somewhat wider than a real dove all around. In fact, if the Voodoo Dove Decoy were a duck decoy, it’d probably be considered a magnum.

What is also noticeable is the heft that the Voodoo has, we put it on a scale, and it weighs in at just over one pound two ounces, fully loaded with 4 double AA batteries. That’s about a quarter-pound heavier than other motorized dove decoys.

Mojo Voodoo Dove Decoy Close Up

Mojo Voodoo Dove Decoy looks on par with many dove decoys close up.

The construction of the decoy is crudely simple and solid. It’s built around what appears to be a dual shaft 550 motor, a mounting bracket, battery holder, switch, and a couple of rivets that secure it all together. Even the access to the battery holder is a hatch that uses what looks like a standard small hardware store hinge, also riveted, and secured with a hook and loop closure.

MOJO Outdoors didn’t exactly create an engineering marvel with the Voodoo Dove Decoy. Instead, they seem to have followed the KISS principle of engineering to produce a solidly built, reliable motion decoy.

In The Field

The large size and good coloration of the Voodoo Dove Decoy body make it easy to spot at a distance. Set up of the heavy 36-inch steel stand is simple, the decoy slides snugly into the top, and the wings attach quickly via strong magnets. Getting a few more inches out of the stand would have been better for most of our in-field setups.

The black and white corrugated plastic wings are also large, larger than the wings of other brand decoys, creating a flicker that is very visible and attractive to doves at a distance.

While the MOJO Outdoors Voodoo attracts doves, it vibrates. It almost looks manic, and the vibration is audible. Up close, the vibration adds to the unnaturalness, but doves do come in from a distance and will give you passover shooting opportunities, even if they aren’t going to land on top of it.

Mojo Voodoo Dove Decoy In Tall Grass

The Mojo Voodoo Dove Decoy looks realistic enough over tall wild grasses.

There isn’t a whole lot to dislike or like about the Voodoo. It does what it is supposed to do, as good or better than other dove decoys we’ve tested, is priced about the same as other dove spinners, and seems better built.

Conclusion

We’ve had great success using Lucky Duck waterfowl decoys, and really like them, so it’s almost uncomfortable to admit, that at least in the world of dove spinners, the MOJO Outdoors Voodoo Dove Decoy is king. Its simple, durable, and effective. So much so, that we’ll be re-visiting MOJO motion waterfowl options, and seeing how they stack up against our Lucky Duck waterfowl decoys. Hopefully, they don’t vibrate as badly, as ducks can be much warier than doves. If you want to bring in the doves and expect your gear to last more than a couple of seasons, get a MOJO Outdoors Voodoo Dove Decoy.

Realism | 4.0/5 |
Effectiveness | 4.2/5 |
Quality | 4.6/5 |
Battery Life | 4.2/5 |
Value | 4.4/5 |
Overall | 4.3/5 |
Tags: , | Comments

Lucky Duck Rapid Flyer Dove Decoy

| August 6, 2021
Lucky Duck Flyer Dove Decoy
Photo Credit: Keith Knoxsville
A Hen and a Drake Green Teal on the truck bed. Not a limit on anything, but a fun morning out.
Name | Rapid Flyer Dove Decoy
Brand | Lucky Duck
Price | $29.99
Warranty | 1 Year Mfg Defect
Battery | 3 AAA
Battery Life | 10 Hours
Operation | Intermittent/Random
Power | On/Off Switch
Size | Realistic
Motion | Flapping
Stand | 7 inches to 12 inches, Clip

The Lucky Duck Rapid Flyer Dove Decoy is one of the more unique motion dove decoys on the market. Instead of the traditional spinning wing motion used by most dove decoys, the Rapid Flyer flaps its wings. It’s clever, but does it work? We decided to give it a try and find out.

First Impressions

The Lucky Duck Rapid Flyer is one of the more realistically sized dove decoys we’ve handled, and since the wings don’t spin to create a flicker, they are made of a fabric with a somewhat realistic coloration and pattern. Outside of some realism, and the fact that the Rapid Flyer wings flap instead of spin, the decoy is a little underwhelming. The plastic materials that comprise the mechanical flapping parts and battery compartment, feel thin, weak, and cheap. The wings, although they look nice, are also flimsy.

When we opened the battery holder, we struggled. The plastic cover to the battery tray utilizes a tab of plastic with a detent, but the tab was so flexible it bent, without releasing the detent. After some massaging, and fear of breakage, we had the battery compartment open. The batteries were a snug fit, and it seemed as though the plastic battery compartment had some unintended bowing. It’s unclear why the plastic materials were warped, but it was unsurprising with the general low-quality feel of the materials used to construct the decoy. Our criticism of the Lucky Duck Rapid Flyer doesn’t end there. The slots in the decoy shell where the wings attach, look like somebody created them hastily with a rotary tool or hobby knife.

Lucky Duck Rapid Flyer Dove Decoy Clip

The Lucky Duck Rapid Flyer Dove Decoy mounts via a clip, or an absurdly small stand.

Lastly, the included stand is absurdly small at about 10 inches and is comprised of heavy steel rods and a rod connector. It is topped with a strange ramp that the dove decoy clips onto. It’s a strange mix of what looks like hardware store parts, and an over-engineered ramp, for a crude clip to clip onto. The stand is a total waste, and the decoy is better utilized clipped onto a branch or barb-wire fence. The one partially redeeming thing about the Rapid Flyer's mounting system is a mounting hole in the upper breast of the decoy that lets you use the normal-sized stakes, included with the Lucky Duck Lucky Dove. It’s unclear how much those dove stakes cost, or if they are even sold individually. You might just be better off buying a thin-walled steel tube that matches the Lucky Duck Lucky Dove stake, and hitting it with some matte black paint.

Lucky Duck Rapid Flyer Dove Decoy Top View

The does a decent job looking like a real dove from above.

In The Field

It’s unclear if the Lucky Duck Rapid Flyer Decoy will hold up over time and while it is good from far, built from seemingly far from good materials, the proof is in the pudding. What matter’s most, is performance, so we set up the Rapid Flyer alongside others in our tests and turned it on. The stand was too short for the Rapid Flyer to perform very well in a field with tall wild grasses. It became more visible and also performed better when clipped to a barb wire fence, or elevated just above bushes using a stand from the Lucky Dove spinning wing decoy.

When we gave the Rapid Flyer Dove Decoy a little space to operate, the motion while slow, was interesting. On its own, it does not have the strong flicker of a standard spinner. So it doesn’t attract doves very well at a distance, but when doves were nearby, it enticed them to land near the decoy spread into nearby branches, and onto the ground. The realism of the Rapid Flyer is enhanced by the intermittent action of the flapping, the nearly random intervals of flapping seem more like a real bird occasionally flapping while taking a dust bath, or preening. At close range, it makes sense that it is more enticing than a traditional spinner that is more attractive at a distance, but unrealistic up close.

Conclusion

We wish the build quality was better, and while the Lucky Duck Rapid Flyer Dove Decoy was interesting, it’s not the best option if you were only going to own one decoy. It doesn’t produce the more enticing flicker, that helps draw in doves from a distance. What it does have going for it is a natural look that draws doves onto the ground or a fence, after a spinner has already got their attention and brought them in. While we bought one for this test, we would not suggest it over either the Mojo Outdoors Voodoo Dove or the Lucky Duck Lucky Dove.

Lucky Duck Rapid Flyer Dove Decoy Flapping

The Lucky Duck Rapid Flyer Dove Decoy flapping motion is slow, and lacks a flicker, but is enticing to nearby birds.

Realism | 4.4/5 |
Effectiveness | 3.8/5 |
Quality | 3.5/5 |
Battery Life | 4.2/5 |
Value | 3.8/5 |
Overall | 3.9/5 |
Tags: , | Comments

Carlson’s Ported Cremator LR Choke

| August 4, 2021
Shooting the Carlsons Cremator Mobil Choke
Photo Credit: Keith Knoxsville
A Hen and a Drake Green Teal on the truck bed. Not a limit on anything, but a fun morning out.
Color | Black
Ported | Yes
Material | Stainless Steel
Fit | Beretta/Benelli Mobil Choke System
Gauge | 12
Constriction Dia. | .700
MFG | USA
Warranty | Lifetime
Price | $59.95

The Carlson's Ported Cremator Long Range Choke is a simple and effective way to improve your shotgun’s patterning. Carlson’s offers a wide range of chokes meant to fit many makes and models of shotguns but we tested the version made to work specifically with the Benelli/Beretta Mobil choke system.

First Impressions

Carlson’s chokes are well known for being an incredibly cost-effective way to improve the performance of just about any shotgun. We put our choke to the test on a Beretta A300 and were quite pleased with the results. This is an extended choke, meaning it sticks out past your barrel instead of being inset like the stock Mobil chokes included with the A300. Extended chokes give you denser patterns, wrench-less installation, and muzzle protection.

The LR choke has no size or speed restrictions when it comes to steel shot, so you’re free to send whatever kind of shot downfield you can get your hands on. Although in theory, you don’t need a choke wrench to install or remove this choke, if it does get stuck, the choke comes with a built-in groove that lets you use a tool to spin it off.

Carlson's Cremator Mobil Choke Up Close

Carlson’s Cremator Long Range Mobil close up.

In The Field

We were particularly excited about the prospect of improving the long-range capabilities of our A300. After patterning some hand-loaded steel #5 at 40 yards, we couldn’t be happier with the results. We got tight patterns that had a high concentration of well-distributed steel with few holes in the pattern. With patterns like that, we have no doubt that it will be effective and highly lethal out to that range and beyond.

Carlson's Cremator Log Range Choke

Carlson’s Cremator Long Range Choke, first shot pattern at 40 Yards.

When fired, the porting does seem to give the A300 a slightly louder report, but not horribly so. Assuming your buddies are already wearing hearing protection in the blind, they won’t notice the difference when sitting next to you. In theory, the porting should lessen the kick and strip the wad faster. In reality, we couldn’t feel a reduction in recoil and until we test a non ported version, we won’t conclusively know if the wad being stripped away sooner has much of an effect on patterning. Either way, we had great results with the Cremator long-range choke and look forward to using it on late-season birds that are less willing to commit to the decoy spread, for those easier up-close shots on flaring birds.

Conclusion

The Carlson's Ported Cremator Long Range Choke is an excellent addition to anyone’s waterfowling kit. We were getting excellent patterns with steel shot out to 40 yards. While not the cheapest aftermarket choke out there, the Cremator LR certainly isn’t the most expensive. We think this choke offers an excellent value for the price. The tight patterns produced by this choke should give you clean kills or clean misses, just the way it’s supposed to be.

Pattern | 4/5 |
Ease of Use | 5/5 |
Price | 4/5 |
Overall | 4.3/5 |
Tags: , , | Comments

STNGR USA Alpine Ballistic Sunglasses

| August 2, 2021
STNGR USA Alpine Ballistic Sunglasses
Photo Credit: Keith Knoxsville
A Hen and a Drake Green Teal on the truck bed. Not a limit on anything, but a fun morning out.
Material | Frame - Memory Nylon | Lens - Polycarbonate
Frame Color | Black
Lens Color | Red, Anti-Reflective, RAZR Technology
Light transmission | ?%
UV Protection | 100% UV Protection
Polarized | Yes
Ratings | Ballistic ANSI Z87.1 Certified
Features | 110° hinge system, Adjustable Nose Pad
Size | Medium/Large
Country of Origin | Tawian
Warranty | 60 Day Trial w/Risk-Free Returns | Damage/Scratched lenses within 1 year | Limited Lifetime against defect
Price | $76.00

In the interest of full disclosure, we requested a pair of STNGR Alpines to use for a gear review. We also remain objective, whether we buy a product, receive a product, or acquire a product at a discount. Opinions are our own.

In a world dominated by overpriced, underwhelming, or just questionable eyewear, it’s hard to find polarized ballistic eyewear for a reasonable price; enter the STNGR USA Alpine Ballistic sunglasses, and Ridge Ballistic Sunglasses. STNGR USA is filling a void by offering polarized ballistic eyewear that looks good, unquestionably protects eyes, and does not come with a fashion brand price tag.

First Impressions

STNGR USA manufactures some slick M-Lok AR15 handguards, M-Lok accessories, and their proprietary AXIOM Red Dot Sight, in addition to ballistic eyewear. Their product focus clearly seems to be performance and quality at budget-friendly price points. As a direct-to-consumer business, there is no middle man to mark up prices, passing savings and value on to the consumer, although their eyewear and some M-Lok accessories are available on amazon.com. We’ve been looking forward to trying the STNGR USA Alpine Ballistic sunglasses but weren’t sure what to expect from a pair of polarized, ANSI-rated, ballistic sunglasses, with a price point under 100 bucks.

Straight out of the box, we were pleasantly surprised with the Alpine Ballistic sunglasses. They have the look and feel of many contemporary designer glasses, but with a slightly sportier wrap-around shape. Like many eyewear manufacturers, STNGR USA ships in nicely branded packaging that includes a hard case, soft case, microfiber lens cloth, and a sticker.

In The Field

The clarity of STNGR USA’s RAZR lenses is really impressive. The intense red mirror finish is perfectly even across the entire lens, there is no gradient in the lens coating whatsoever. You would think that there would be a significant loss of light transmission or a severe red tint to everything that you see, given the intense red mirror finish, but there is no unnatural coloration at all.

There is also very little loss of light through the lenses, and optical clarity remains both even and crystal clear. We specifically chose red mirror lenses for the range, alpine and upland hunting, but STNGR offers blue, grey, and green lenses across both the Alpine and Ridge models if you prefer those colors. The lenses are also replaceable. Being people who actually use gear, affordable replacement lenses is a massive bonus in our eyes. You can buy replacement lenses direct from STNGR if they do get damaged, or maybe you just decide you prefer a blue mirror finish instead of a red one.

STNGR USA Alpine Ballistic Fit

The STNGR USA Alpine Ballistic Sunglasses fit well on a variety of face and nose shapes; perfect or imperfect.

Beyond great optical clarity and performance, the STNGR USA Alpines also deliver on comfort and fit. We took the Alpines to the range to use with a variety of firearms and optics. We also had different members of our gear team try them on and use them. For smaller and narrower faces, the Alpine Ballistic sunglasses fit very well. On bigger or wider faces, the glasses, albeit advertised as medium/large are a little small. It should be reiterated that STNGR does make the Ridge Ballistic Sunglasses for larger faces, so there are great ballistic eyewear options for just about anyone.

The Alpines also have an adjustable rubber nose piece for better comfort and fit. The adjustability makes them perfect for those who may not have a perfectly symmetrical nose, are not the progeny of Adonis, or those with noses that may have some character from a fracture or two; like the gear tester and model for the photos in this gear review. Other comparable protective sunglasses lack this feature, use symmetrical flanges on the frame that rest on the bridge of the nose, and offer no adjustability. The anti-slip rubber temples also keep lenses snug on your face, even when shooting firearms with more intense recoil. You may eventually lose your hat, but your eye protection will stay in place.

STNGR USA Alpine Ballistic Sunglasses Nose Piece

The adjustable rubber nose piece on the STNGR USA Alpine Ballistic Sunglasses increases comfort and fits a variety of nose shapes.

The combination of optical clarity, great light transmission, comfort, and fit, let you forget you are wearing them while operating a variety of firearms. We had no issue using a Bushnell TRS 25 red dot sight, a variety of scopes, and the fiber optic front sights on a couple of shotguns, while wearing the Alpine Ballistic Sunglasses.

When shooting, it really feels like they just aren’t there. The glare reduction makes it faster to acquire targets when the sun is low in the sky. And the security of an ANSI 87.1 impact rating gives you confidence that your eyes are protected from debris, ricocheting bullet fragments, and bouncing steel shot. Whether it feels like an active improvement to your shooting, or you just benefit from comfort, glare reduction, and optical clarity, the STNGR USA Alpine Ballistic sunglasses will probably help your shooting.

We are really looking forward to using these on high country hunts, and even more excited to use these waterfowl hunting this season. Anybody who duck hunts knows how difficult it can be to target a duck ripping in front of the sun. The Alpine’s will not make you a better shot, but a bad glare will be one less excuse when you miss.

Conclusion

Compared to similar ballistic eyewear, STNGR USA Alpines offer a more comfortable fit, adjustable anti-slip rubberized nose piece, anti-slip rubber temple parts, replaceable lenses, a higher ANSI safety rating, a better overall feel, better color clarity, and a more affordable price point. We looked at similarly priced and similarly featured products when we evaluated the Alpines, and for anything under 120 dollars, we think you’d be hard-pressed to find better performance.

The bottom line is, if you want a high-performance pair of polarized sunglasses, rated to protect your eyes from impact as well as UV, and don’t want to pay the markup associated with designer eyewear brands, then give STNGR USA Alpine Ballistic sunglasses a try. If you have a wider face or head, check out their Ridge Ballistic Sunglasses for a better fit.

Too good to be true? We don’t think so, but you don’t just have to take our word for it. Gun News Daily called them “the Best Shooting Glasses for the Money”, GAT Daily likes them, PEW PEW Tactical said “they might be my favorite ones yet”, and MrGunsngear shot the shit out of them with a 12 gauge! STNGR USA ballistic eyewear has a lot of accolades, from a lot of reputable folks, it isn’t just us.

STNGR USA Alpine Ballistic Sunglasses Range Ready

Ready to hit the range with the STNGR USA Alpine Ballistic Sunglasses and some fresh freedom seeds.

Buy Them on Amazon

STNGR USA Alpine Sunglasses Poolside

The STNGR USA Alpine Sunglasses are just as at home at the range, as they are poolside.

Tags: , , , | Comments

CVLIFE 4×32 Compact Scope

| August 1, 2021
4x32 Compact Scope Objective Lens
Photo Credit: Keith Knoxsville
A Hen and a Drake Green Teal on the truck bed. Not a limit on anything, but a fun morning out.
Reticle | Mil Dot
Objective Lens Diameter | 1.26 inches (32mm)
Tube Size | 1 inch
Length | 7.48 inches
Material | Aluminum
Weight | 12.8 ounces
Magnification | 4x fixed
MOA Adjustment | 1/4 MOA
Eye Relief | 3.3 inches
Illumination | NA
Battery | NA
Battery Life | NA
Waterproof | Waterproof, and Fog Proof, Nitrogen Purged
Country of Origin | China
Warranty | One Year
Includes | See Through Lens Covers
Price | 27.99

Is the CVLIFE 4x32 compact scope any good, or just a waste of money? We’ve all looked at budget optics at one time or another, and wondered the same thing. In our pursuit of a budget compact optic for a Crosman 1322 air pistol, we decided to give the CVLIFE 4x32 compact scope a try.

We considered the 3-9x40 compact scope, but thought that it would over scope the Crosman air pistol, and be a waste of a few more dollars should the CVLIFE scope not pass muster. We also considered the UTG 3-9X32 BugBuster scope, because it gets a lot of positive reviews. But again, we didn’t want to over scope the air gun, and passed on the BugBuster. The BugBuster is actually also more than twice as expensive as the CVLIFE scope.

CVLIFE 4×32 Compact Scope – Initial Thoughts

The CVLIFE 4x32 compact scope came packaged in a printed cardboard box, branded with the CVLIFE logo and their odd tagline “convenience your life”. For the price point it wouldn’t have been surprising if the scope came packaged in a blister pack, or just a generic brown box, but it was nice to see some branding pride and care associated with the packaging.

Right out of the box, there was nothing overly impressive, nor were there any real obvious concerns. There were no included manuals, stickers, disclaimers, or warranties, which is unusual for an optic, but not surprising for the price point. Aesthetically, the compact scope was actually pretty nice. The finish quality of the aluminum construction was on par with many optics, and the anodizing was even, solid, and smooth. The lenses looked clean, and scratch free.

CVLIFE 4×32 Compact Scope – Field Tests

We mounted the CVLIFE 4x32 compact scope to a Crosman air gun with Redfield see-thru dovetail scope rings intended for .22 rimfire rifles. The glass is surprisingly bright and clear, and the reticle sharp, although maybe a bit thicker and heavier than reticles on a higher end optic. The lens coating is sufficient for letting light into the objective lens while doing a decent job managing glare.

4x32 Compact Scope

The CVLIFE 4×32 compact scope mounted to its permanent home, a Crosman 1322.

We took a first shot at 10 yards and started to adjust zero. We did not expect much from the elevation and windage turrets. At the price point, the turrets could be understandably mushy or have more than desirable play. However, the turrets were crisp enough, and made both physical and audible clicks for every 1/4 MOA adjustment. The adjustments were also accurate, and the reticle moved the posted 1/4 MOA increments. We gradually sighted the air gun to 25 yards.

To our surprise we suffered no parallax issues, didn’t observe any edge distortion, and the eye relief was sufficient at just over 3 inches.

CVLIFE 4×32 Compact Scope – Critical Observations

It is difficult to be critical of the CVLIFE 4x32 compact scope, because we approached the scope with very reasonable expectations. The glass is not, and never will be, the glass from a $500 dollar optic. However, the glass, construction quality, and turrets don’t feel like you would expect them too on such an inexpensive scope.

CVLIFE 4×32 Compact Scope – Conclusion

The CVLIFE 4x32 compact scope is more than adequate on our air pistol, where the maximum effective range is about 50 yards. While we did set our expectations quite low, we were all pleasantly surprised that a scope, for less than $30, could offer the level of quality and performance that it does. We are also not alone in this opinion.

After more than 2400 reviews on Amazon, the CVLIFE 4x32 compact scope has 4.3 out of 5 stars. Some reviewers use it on firearms subject to much more recoil and abuse than our air gun, like semi-automatic rifles. Others are using it for airsoft. Even with the mixed use case, the CVLIFE 4x32 compact scope maintains very positive reviews.

The CVLIFE 4x32 compact scope, when properly matched with a rimfire or air gun, is a winner at the price point. The other unspoken winner in our review, is actually the Redfield see-thru dovetail scope rings used to mount the scope to the dovetail on the air gun breech. They are light, well made, mounted securely, and have a solid finish.

If you are looking for a scope at the sub thirty dollar mark and your expectations are reasonable, the CVLIFE 4x32 compact scope is an option we have verified gets the job done.

Tags: , | Comments

Bear Paradox RTH

| August 1, 2021
Bear Paradox RTH Hero Image
Photo Credit: Keith Knoxsville
A Hen and a Drake Green Teal on the truck bed. Not a limit on anything, but a fun morning out.
Cams | Single
Draw Length | 23-30 inches
Axle to Axle Length | 32 inches
Brace Height | 6 1/4 inches
Draw Weights | 45lbs-60lbs, 55-70lbs
Let Off | 80%
Weight Bare Bow | 4.3 lbs
Weight Equipped with included accessories | 5.8Lbs
IBO | 330 FPS
String | Bear Contraband
Color | True Timber Strata
Price | $499.99

The Bear Paradox Ready to Hunt Package is an entry-level bow that comes equipped with all the necessary accessories to get you out the door and sending arrows downrange. For those new to archery and looking to make an online purchase, be aware that you will still need to have the bow fitted to you and most notably have your peep sight adjusted, which requires a bow press to de-tension the string and cables. If it’s at all an option, we’d suggest heading into your local archery store to make your purchase and get your new bow set up by a pro.

First Impressions

One of the best features of the Bear Paradox RTH package is how easy it is to adjust at home. With a few quick turns of a hex key, you can adjust your draw length and draw weight. This bow is available in two draw weight ranges; 45lbs-60lbs and 55lbs-70lbs. This large range of adjustability makes it ideal for new archers or kids who you expect to keep growing. The single-cam system makes keeping the bow tuned, much less complicated and a good place to start if you want to learn how to self-tune your bow at home.

Bear Paradox RTH Sights

Bear Paradox Ready To Hunt Package Sights.

For an entry-level bow there isn’t a lot to complain about in terms of performance. The draw cycle isn’t the smoothest but ends in a very firm back wall. We did however find there to be noticeable vibration and some hand shock when firing the bow. This is almost to be expected though for a bow capable of producing such fast speeds and in this price range.

In The Field

The factory string and cables included with the Bear Paradox RTH Package leave much to be desired. We found they stretched significantly and wore incredibly quickly. After only a few hundred shots, we noticed the serving on the cable had completely worn through and started to wear through the cable itself. We replaced the strings and cables with a custom America’s Best Bow String set up and went back to the range. A few hundred shots later, the serving on the cable started to show some wear, but much less than the original, and the actual cable itself showed no wear. This can be an issue with some single cam bows due to the harsh angle they can create. If you plan on shooting your bow every day, this might be something to worry about, but if you’re just the occasional shooter, it’s probably not something to preoccupy yourself with.

Bear Paradox RTH Form

Bear Paradox RTH Form

Conclusion

For the price of the Bear Paradox RTH Package, you are getting a lot of bow and some decent accessories. The included accessories aren’t top of the line but if you are a new shooter, they are more than adequate to learn with. The biggest issue was with the factory string, so when you’re considering costs before your purchase, keep in mind you might need to replace the original string sooner than later.

Bear Paradox RTH Release

Buck fully drawn, and ready to release, on the Bear Paradox RTH

Bear Paradox RTH Limbs

Bear Paradox RTH Limbs

Tags: , | Comments