Which Inforce APLc for your Sig Sauer P320?

Perhaps you already have a Sig Sauer P320 and are looking to get a weapon mounted light. While there are lots of good options on the market, the Inforce APLc is a popular one because of a few reasons.

The light itself is small, and has a mostly snag-free design. This is an important carry consideration as designs with big levers or arms can snag on clothing and necessitate a larger holster to carry.  The light has 200 lumens, which is adequate for most situations (I would advocate carrying a handheld light as well for situations where you don’t want to point your pistol at something you wouldn’t want to shoot — but that’s a whole different topic), and the runtime is adequate at 1.5 hours.  Finally, the switches are available on both sides, allowing you to manipulate with strong hand or reaction hand.  This all adds up to a very popular package for users.

But there are 2 different versions of the APLc.  There is an “APLc” and “APLc for Glock“.  The difference between the 2 is not immediately obvious, but if you look close, you’ll see that the APLc for Glock places the screw (which goes through the rail slots) further forward than the regular APLc.

This might make you think that you must purchase the APLc for your Sig Sauer P320. However, that is not the case.

APLc for Glock
APLc

As you can see from the above pictures, the screw may be positioned differently, but the light appears to be mounted in the same position.  Why is this?  It’s because the APLc for Glock and the APLc simply have their screw travel through different rail slots; the rail slot spacing is the same as the spacing difference between the different versions of the APLc.

Why is this important?  Say you have a number of different pistols you may choose to use your weapon mounted light with?  Perhaps you’re not sure if you’re going to run your APLc on your Sig or your Glock?  You can purchase the APLc for Glock, and use it on either pistol.  Similarly, perhaps you’re wanting to switch your light between the P320 and the HK VP9sk (the APLc for Glock won’t fit this HK), then get the regular APLc and you’re covered.

While this article is in relation to the popular Sig Sauer P320, it likely applies to a number of different pistol models.  If you choose carefully, you can maximize the interchange of your APLc on various pistols.

Here is a video showing what is discussed above.

Biggest Cedar Tree East of the Cascade Range?

On a cold December Sunday, we decided to go see it.  Yep, we were finally going to see the giant cedar in Idaho.  If you never knew there was such a thing, then read on…

Apparently, there is a cedar grove with a Giant Western Red Cedar not a terribly long drive from our house.  Not sure what to expect, we loaded up the 4runner with self recovery gear and some extra food and headed out for the adventure of it.

We headed to the town of Elk River, then turned North.  The roads weren’t bad because winter has been mild.  We followed the maps using a pin I had dropped on Maps.me at 46.888958, -116.12997 for the turnoff from Forest Service 382 Road.  It turns out that the roads were fairly well marked, but I was happy to have the GPS anyway.

As we climbed, the scenery became more beautiful, and the snow and ice started to get thicker.  The stream we followed was a living ice sculpture, and the trees were laden with snow — straight out of a Christmas movie.

We found our cutoff, and followed the road.  It brought us right to the trailhead, which I had marked at 46.886949, -116.12156.  Given the late hour (about 3pm on a winter Sunday), it was not surprising that we were the only ones there.

We walked down the snowy path, one part of which was covered by a large tree that had fallen into another, and both were suspended above us as an eerie lumber guillotine.  It was amazing that both were still suspended in an X fifty feet above our heads.  A little further and found the cedar grove.  According to the sign by the tree, this giant is over 18 feet in diameter at chest height, and it is estimated to be more then 3000 years old.  It was alive when Christ walked the earth!  Standing beside and underneath it, we found it difficult to appreciate the full size.  It’s huge.

Says this tree is estimated to be over 3,000 years old.

There are other trees nearby.  And when we stopped and listened, we heard… nothing.  It was beautifully silent.

The walk wasn’t long, and there wasn’t a lot to be done other than admire the beauty of God’s creation.  But this was definitely a worthwhile trip.

We headed back to the truck, and headed out.  As the sun turned the sky shades of pink and purple, the snow crystals blinked unique patterns of Christmas lights back at our headlights.  It was a beautiful trip, made all the more fun and unique by the blanket of snow.

Pink sunset and crystal sparkles welcome us on our drive home.

The 4runner with the Toyo Observe GSi-5 studless snows had no problems on the roads.  Thankfully, we didn’t have to use any of the recovery gear we had brought.  This trip was easy… just watch the scenery and serenity of the mountains near Elk River.

Which New Toyota 4Runner Trim?

Our 2018 Toyota 4Runner TRD Offroad with KDSS and CVT Tent., on the drive home from the dealer, just North of Riggins, ID.

My wife’s Audi Q5, as perfectly reliable as it has been, was approaching 100k miles.  In addition, she was wanting something more rugged — something we could take out to the abundant forests nearby and explore and camp.  Since we already had the Werkz Ram 1500, we didn’t want another pickup.  We wanted something in the highly capable SUV realm.

We initially were looking at the Jeep Wrangler Unlimited, 2012 and up.  The off road capabilities are great, especially with the Rubicon package.  However, we could never put together quite the deal we were looking for.  And to be honest, I don’t think either of us enjoyed the jeep that much.  Sure, taking the top off was fun, but it’s also a pain — how often would we really remove the top?

Getting discouraged, I asked my wife to drive a used FJ Cruiser at a local Toyota dealership.  She thought it was fine, but she prefers carpeting and nicer interiors.  The FJ Cruiser is a cool rig, but she couldn’t see driving it every day.  We also saw and drove a 2017 4Runner TRD Pro.  She liked the rig.  A lot.  If it had been in black or white or an exclusive 2017 color (it was Barcelona Red), we might have bought it.  It did lack two things we wanted — moonroof for her, and I wanted KDSS.  Those two options aren’t available for the TRD Pro.

The moonroof is self-exlpanatory, but KDSS (Kinetic Dynamic Suspension System) requires a little more explanation.  It allows a bigger sway bar in front for on-road handing, then acts as a disconnect for off-road performance.  Here is a video that explains it more:

Though I like the Pro front end a little better, the main thing that had us considering the Pro was the insane resale.   From the ads I saw online, someone could buy a new Pro at sticker, drive it for 2 years and 40k miles, and sell it for darn near sticker again.  However, since we didn’t plan on selling for many many years, we decided it was important to get exactly what we wanted.

We also considered a used Trail or used GX460.  For those who don’t know, the GX460 is much like the overseas Toyota Prado, and includes a “love it or hate it” side swing rear door and v8 power in the same exact chassis as the 4Runner.  And the earlier Trail is like the current TRD Off Road package.  The problem was that we only found 1 used earlier trail with low miles and in great shape — and the interior isn’t as nice as the newer ones.  We also loved the way the GX460 drove with the v8 and 6-speed automatic, but the styling was “meh” (for the early ones) to “ugh” (for the predator faced ones) and the GX460 has the Torsen center diff and no locking rear differential, limiting the off-road capabilities slightly.

As a result, we ended up buying this black 2018 Toyota 4Runner TRD Off Road Premium with KDSS and moonroof.  We also ended up buying the Cascadia Vehicle Tent (CVT) that is on the roof.  We’ve not had a chance to try the tent, but so far we love the 4Runner.  Future upgrades will likely include BFG KO2 tires, on some genuine TRD wheels.   We will probably upgrade to Bilsteins as well.

4Runner TRD Off Road with the CVT Tent

In summary, our comparison grid looked like this:

4Runner TRD Pro TRD Off Road TRD Off Road Premium Used Trail earlier than 2013 Used GX460
Resale Unbelievable Great Great OK OK
KDSS Not available Available Available Available Standard
Moonroof Not available Available Available Available Standard
Leather or Fake Leather Standard Not available Standard Not available Standard
Locking Rear Diff Standard Standard Standard Standard Not available
Modernized interior Standard Standard Standard Not available Standard
Warranty Yes Yes Yes Not likely Not likely
V8 Power Not available Not available Not available Not available Standard
Exterior Styling Good Good Good Good Meh to Ugh

5 Tips for a Safe Rest Stop

I travel frequently.  This travel often requires that I stop at rest areas or other public restrooms.  Maybe I’ve read too many bathroom  attack stories, but I’m especially aware when using the bathroom late at night.  Here are some tips that I’ve gathered for a safe stop.

  1. Don’t stop at a questionable public restroom.  This means you may want to avoid the bathroom that is in a bad section of town or bypass the rest area with only a car or two in the lot.  One option if you’re driving back roads or less busy highways may be to simply stop at the side of the road.  Another option is to use a Starbucks or McDonalds; they often have clean restrooms and are frequently available.  If you can avoid a confrontation, it might be worth the extra few minutes to find a safer spot to stop.
  2. Clear the bathroom.  Don’t just push the door part way open, enter, walk to the first stall, and commence.  Push the door all the way open to help ensure no one is standing behind it.  Look in all the stalls to make sure you know if anyone is in there.  Preferably it’s empty, but if not, you still want to know how many other folks are in there with you.  Keep mental track of each individual in the bathroom while you’re in there.  You can also clear the bathroom for your significant other; a law enforcement friend of mine said he just opens the door to the ladies room and yells “cleaning service” or “housekeeping” before checking the bathroom to make sure it is empty. It only takes a couple minutes to help improve the safety of those you love.
  3. Lock the door.  Many of the restrooms I enter have a deadbolt from the inside, even the ones with multiple stalls or urinals.  I think it’s better to remain alone if you are at an apparently empty restroom; why not lock the bathroom door?  The worst that may happen is someone else is inconvenienced a little.
  4. Use the “right” stall or urinal.  There are whole articles written about what to do with your pistol when using the toilet; I won’t talk to that.  However, you may want to choose the larger stall to help make sure you have more space to maneuver and less chance of someone reaching under.  You may want to use the stall at the end of the row so that there is less need for someone to walk past your door.  If using a urinal, you may want to choose the one furthest from the door so that there is less chance someone entering may walk behind you.  (Note that I’ve read multiple articles about people being attacked from behind at a urinal.)  However, you may also choose the stall or urinal closest to the door for specific reasons.  Either way, think through which one might give you the best advantage.  Of course, if you’ve locked the door as suggested above, some of these concerns may be mitigated.
  5. Exit aware.  Now that you’re done and washed up, it’s time to leave.  You’re safe, right?  Time to grab your phone, check Facebook, or maybe text your spouse.  Well, maybe not yet.  When you walk out the bathroom door, check your surroundings.  Check to see if anyone is immediately outside each door you walk out.  Try not to let someone flank you at the doors. Definitely, don’t let yourself be flanked on both sides.  If necessary, you can hold the door open and wait for anyone approaching to walk in past you, rather than giving your back to them.  As you approach your car, use angles and distance to see if someone may be next to it.  Finally, once you’re in your vehicle, time to lock the doors, start it, and move to an empty and less-busy area.  If you need to check your phone, it is better to do it from a locked running car where people aren’t likely to walk by.

Note that none of these items require that you be armed.  These are just a few tricks that you can use to help keep yourself or your loved ones safer in a vulnerable situation.

Will your new Gen5 Glock 19 with a light or laser attachment fit in your current holster?

Recently, I tried our Gen5 G19 with an Inforce APLc in a Werkz Minimalist 2.0 holster designed on the previous generation Glocks.  It didn’t fit properly.  Here is what I found out.

First, a bit of background.  Most holsters fit tightly around the pistol and (if attached) light or laser, especially when fully holstered.  This prevents the pistol from moving around a lot and gives proper retention and feel.  For a Kydex holster, key areas of retention are around the sides, where the Kydex has “give”.  This allows the Kydex to flex in for retention and flex out on draw.  Near the top of the slide or around the bottom of the holster, there is less give because this is where the holster comes together.  Further, the Kydex is quite strong around those areas.  For a holster to fit properly, the distance from the top of the slide to the bottom of the light is critical.  And that is where the problem is for the Gen5 Glock 19 we tried.

I tested the holster with the Gen4 G19, and it fit properly.  I also tested the holster with the Gen5, and it fit too tightly.  So tightly in fact that I would have had a difficult time drawing cleanly.  This wasn’t an item I could resolve by adjusting the retention screw, and it wasn’t because the holster didn’t have clearance for the ambi slide release.  So, I measured my pistol in a number of places, and here is what I found.

G19 Gen4 G19 Gen5
Top of Slide to Bottom of dust cover – front of trigger guard 36.7 36.7
Top of Slide to Bottom of dust cover – at rail slot 33.8 34.5
Top of Slide to Bottom of dust cover – end of muzzle 35.7 36.7
Frame Width – front of trigger guard 29.4 29.4
Frame Width – at rail slot 20.8 20.8
Frame Width – end of muzzle 20.9 21
Slide Width 25.5 25.6
Top of Slide to Bottom of IAPLc 60.2 61

The cells highlighted in yellow are the most concerning.  It seems that the Gen5 Glock puts the light almost 1mm lower than the previous generations.  This small change can result in a holster that fits properly on a previous generation NOT fit properly with the Gen5.  Due to the importance of that dimension in the holster, it is quite likely that the Gen5 holsters will require a different design — not just for the slide release, but also for the lower rail position.

Werkz is working on updates to their holsters to accommodate, and will be distinguishing between the Gen5 and previous generations for custom holsters.  But this is something you should be aware of when purchasing your Gen5 Glock, and especially if you’re purchasing a special holster just for your Gen5.  Make sure it will work with your combination.

Here is more information in a video…

One final thing: Werkz is now making Gen5 Glock 19 holsters.  These holsters are specifically designed for and tested with the Gen5 Glock 19.

Live Armed!

315/70r17 Tires on a 2014 Ram 1500 with No Lift

2014 Ram 1500 with 315/70r17 at stock ride height

It was time to upgrade the tires on my 2014 Ram 1500.  With 21k miles, the stock tires were looking a little poor, and handled terribly last winter.  Living up a dirt road in Idaho, I wanted to put a more aggressive tire on the truck.

The first question I needed to answer was whether to keep the stock 20″ clad wheels, or go with something different.  After looking at tire prices, I investigated pricing for the 18 and 17 inch wheels on Tire Rack.  I decided that I wanted both the less expensive tire as well as the taller sidewall of a 17″ wheel.

The next question was what wheels I would get to run with the larger tires.  Unfortunately, I didn’t see many 17″ wheels that I liked at Tire Rack.  However, when searching Craigslist, I  found a set of Ram Rebel wheels with the Toyo tires that I liked.  I’m a fan of keeping my vehicles driving like stock — the factory engineers work hard to make for a good driving truck, and I don’t want to screw it up.  While those wheels sold before I was able to buy them, it gave me something to shoot for.

Earlier this month, I found a set of bare Ram Rebel wheel takeoffs.  I bought them for $500.  Finally, I had the wheels I wanted, but now I needed to determine what tires to run.

After looking at postings on Ramforumz.com and other sites, it appeared that the 315/70r17 tires (which are 34.5 inches tall) would fit on the truck.  It wasn’t clear whether a lift was needed for these to fit, many seemed to run the Bilstein front shocks with the front lift they provide.  As a result, I was thinking that the best course would be to run the Bilsteins with the 315/70r17 tires.

I called 4 Wheel Parts in Boise to find what my options would be for the 17″ wheels I had.  I priced the Goodyear Wrangler Duratrac and the BF Goodrich A/T KO2 tires.  Apparently, 4WP had a great bulk buy on 315/70r17 tires from BF Goodrich, so I went with them.  The tires were under $200 each!

After a few issues working with 4 Wheel Parts (separate review to be published later), they found a note that they couldn’t use the Bilstein lift with the stock control arms.  I didn’t have the Zone Control Arm solution installed, so it meant that they would only install at the stock height.  They offered to go with smaller tires, but I opted to stay with the 315s.

2014 Ram 1500 with 315/70r17 at stock ride height – Upper Control Arm Clearance

When picking up the truck, I was a bit worried about rubbing issues.  However, after 500+ miles, including some time on logging trails here in Idaho. I have had minimal rubbing.  The only time I get rubbing is when backing in to where I park.  A left turn while dropping the right front down a hill results in minor rubbing on the inner finder on the driver’s side.  I have noticed lower gas mileage and a bit slower acceleration.  Handling isn’t as sharp, but to be honest the ride is better.  Road manners are just as good as stock; it doesn’t pull in the ruts, and my wife still enjoys driving the truck.  That’s something.

2014 Ram 1500 with 315/70r17 at stock ride height – BF Goodrich A/T KO2 tires

So, what’s the lesson?  If you want 315/70r17 tires on your 4th gen Ram,  you can put them on at stock ride height.  i admit that this is tire specific, but I suspect it will work with most tire models.  This achieved my goals of having better off-road capability (did I mention these tires have the severe snow snowflake) plus a more aggressive look.

Will I eventually replace the control arms and lift the truck using the built-in capability of the Bilsteins?  At this point, I don’t think so.  The truck just drives so good with the 315s and it’s got a great look.  There is minimal rubbing.  I just don’t feel the need to lift it.

So… if you’re looking to get bigger tires for your Ram, but don’t want to lift it… I believe you can.

Welcome!

This website and blog is a collection of thoughts, experiences, reviews, and ideas related to concealed carry and outdoor living.  We plan to bring articles regarding places we’ve been, gear we’ve used, concealed carry thoughts, firearm and accessory use, off-road vehicles, and a host of other thoughts.  Hang on, and we’ll do our best to inform, entertain, and perhaps educate you as well.

Blessings!

Shan Hemphill, editor