Posts Tagged ‘Review’

In April, I ordered a Etekcity backpacker sized stove with self-ignition in the hopes that I could use it to make a hot beverage or heat water to use with a dehydrated meal on the trail sometime during the year.  I didn’t end up hiking as much as I wanted to (my work schedule was changed multiple times, making it difficult to tie in with my wife’s days off, so when our days off coincided we would use the time to catch up on housework etc.) so I hadn’t used it.

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Etekcity Ultralight Portable stove with piezo ignition – this image is from Amazon.com

Recently, I watched quite a few bushcraft videos, mostly Joe Robinet and McQ Bushcraft, and remembered that I’d bought this tiny stove, but hadn’t used or tested it yet.

The stove takes butane-propane mix canisters, so on a recent shopping trip, I picked one up at REI for under $5 to test the stove out.  Be careful when buying this kind of stuff, my first stop for most gear is Amazon, but always, always double check prices with other sites and/or physical stores.  REI doesn’t even list this item on their website, and Amazon has it listed for $18.99, but it was $4.95 at the REI near Kennesaw, GA.  (In the past, I’ve found quite a few items listed by third party sellers that was outrageously priced.  One item was $8 per can at Academy Sports, and $49.00 from a third party seller on Amazon.)

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To test this, I used a tin cup I picked up in Afghanistan about ten years ago, two cups of cold tap water, and put the stove on the railing of my back porch.  I wanted to see how long it would take to bring the water to a rolling boil.  According to our outdoor thermometer, it was 34′ outside,  and Intellicast.com shows a 10-15 mph NW wind.  I don’t have a lid for the cup, and for the first seven minutes of the test, I didn’t block the wind.

The little stove heated the water very quickly, but it wouldn’t come to a boil until I stood blocking the wind, at which point roughly one minute later I had a rolling boil.  If I had a lid for the cup, and had blocked the wind from the beginning, I have no doubt that this tiny stove would have had the water boiling quite fast.

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The water started to steam in the cold air in under a minute

I really like it – the package lists the output as 6,666 BTU, which I think is really good for something under $12 that can fit in a shirt pocket.  I don’t know if I would rely on this kind of thing for long-term survival, but as a short term, light weight option for camping trips and backpacking trips, it would certainly be much faster than cutting firewood and starting a full campfire when all you want is to re-hydrate a meal and have a cup of tea before moving on. It cools down very quickly, by the time you have the meal ready to eat, it should be cool enough to put back in the carrying case.

The stove comes with an orange plastic two piece carrying case.

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This shows the stove when out of the case, in the case, and when the case is closed – Image is from Amazon.com

Another thing to seriously consider is the company reputation – does the company have good customer service? Are their bows reliable? Ask the service tech at the shop which bows he sees returned for repair or exchange the most, and if that’s a problem with the bow, or a problem with the users. Check some of the online forums and blogs, but be wary of SINGLE opinions, because that’s what those are, opinions, not professional reviews.

Provide All Hunting products Through Online.

There are several things to consider while buying a crossbow. Never do a mistake of choosing a bow without considering arrow velocity. While purchasing you should think of how easily you can cock the bow. Choosing a bow that has more draw weight can seriously hurt your back and shoulders.

Crossbow-PXE

Price is the next considerate factor when buying a bow. Many people want to save money on their first crossbow package that result with a product that you are not satisfied with. The cheap products are made with poor quality materials. They may not be good as a quality product.

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The other things to consider while purchasing a bow are draw weight, draw length, speed, noise level and brace height. Make sure, you choose PSE Crossbows that have been made by a highly reputable company. Find a company that supplies quality products at affordable prices. You can expect a high…

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As I said a few days ago, I ordered new Hips Archery Targets after being selected to be on their pro-staff this year.  They arrived this afternoon, and I have to say they are fantastic!  The targets are MUCH lighter that I expected them to be, there won’t be any problems putting these where I want, when I want, other than my backyard range isn’t level, so my arrows tend to knock the targets left or right a bit, making it look like I’m shooting from three different angles.  I’ll probably put together a few sandbags to make a mini ‘bunker’ to hold them in place and all will be well.  (My back yard slopes off sharply at the woodline, giving me 30 yards from my back door, exactly.)

Hips_arrivedHips_Big_Game_shotSadly, after five arrows (four into the Hips target above, one into my River Bottom Buck) I had an equipment malfunction that actually requires some work at the shop before I can shoot that setup again, hopefully tomorrow. The arrows you see there were shot from 20 yards, one after the other, and though I’m not displeased with my accuracy, since it was my arrow rest that failed, I have to wonder if I might not have done a little better if it wasn’t falling apart to begin with.  The arrows pulled out easily, much easier than any 3D target I’ve shot, and easier than most bag targets.

Ok, first NO spoilers here – none. Zero. Zip. Not telling you SQUAT!!


The basics you need to know going into this film are:

  • This is based in the SAME universe as Ridley Scott’s 1979 film “Alien” and all of it’s sequels, including the Predator films.
  • There are direct links between the films, all of them. You have to pay ATTENTION. Turn the smartphone OFF. I mean it!
  • Go see it in IMAX. While I would argue ‘folks, STOP filming everything IMAX in 3D, it’s more annoying than it’s worth,’ the IMAX theater’s sound system and screen make up for wearing goofy 3D glasses.
  • Don’t bring little kids.  I’ve lost track of the films I’ve seen in the last three years where, 20 minutes into the film, somebody without a brain has to get up and take their TODDLERS out of an R-rated film. (Been YEARS but I actually saw somebody with three kids UNDER FIVE at “Blackhawk Down.”)
  • I loved, L O V E D this film.  The ONLY criticism I have agrees with one of the professional reviews I read “Why would you cast GUY PEARCE as an old man and then have to cake 1/2″ of makeup on him?”
  • And my last note, Michael Fassbender – Ireland, if you can keep bringing people like this up, the world will thank you. The man is an AMAZING actor in the role of David.

I’ve used the old Bear Archery fixed blade broadheads (Back in the 1980’s), if you’ve been around long enough, you’ll recognize these:

Stickbow.com

In the 1990’s, I used NAP Thunderhead 125’s for deer in Ohio and West Virginia.  I switched to Muzzy’s when I lived in New York, I didn’t have any complaints about the Thunderheads, I just had a chance to buy Muzzy’s at a very good price as a staff shooter for a local shop, and I’d heard amazingly good things about them, so I bought some and liked the way they shot.

Last year, when I finally had the opportunity to get back into bowhunting and 3D archery, the folks at Gable Sporting Goods recommended Grim Reaper broadheads.

Now, I still had a dozen or so Thunderheads in my tackle, I still had about half a dozen Muzzy’s, and back in the early 1990’s, I’d heard and seen some really, really poor results from mechanical broadheads, despite what was supposed to be the advantages of field-tip accuracy.  These looked sturdier, and came with a non-opening practice tip, so I thought “I’ll try these out.”

Sadly, I did not get a shot during archery season last year.  My daughter was injured (broken pelvis) in an accident up in Ohio, and I spent the first week of archery season up there instead of hunting.  Overall, out of a planned 20+ days in the woods during bow season, I think I managed 4 days.  One very small doe stayed in a treeline near me, and honestly, I probably could have gotten a shot off, but with the underbrush and small trees, I decided my chances of getting a clean killing shot were far less than ideal and just watched her tick off the squirrels by eating their acorns.

So – accuracy.  Out to 50 yards, I see absolutely no difference between the Grim Reaper and my field tips. None.  I plan on hunting hogs and deer with these this year, starting in August (unless anyone has private land with hogs on it in GA that they want me to come hunt.  Anyone? Anyone?) and continuing through January-February.  I’ll report results when I have more information. Until then, here are some of Grim Reaper’s ballistic gel tests.


The sound seems a bit out of sync on this one, but it’s good information as well:

(Hmmm… torture test archery equipment, how do I get that job?)

Ok – as I begin to write this, we’re about 45 minutes into the film – and I stopped enjoying it about 30 minutes ago. I love Liam Neeson – I’ve liked his work since Krull.  (I’m not saying I liked Krull – even when I was young, that movie sucked.) The wolves are terrible – they look bad, they don’t behave ANYTHING like any documentary, reference source, or first hand account I’ve EVER read, watched, heard, or leaned on at Barnes & Noble.  Not to mention that a tiny fire in a clearing, without wind breaks, a reflector, etc, will do nothing to warm the people around it.

And that’s just the start of the issues. Why would you cook a wolf 3′ over an open fire in below freezing weather. Wouldn’t work. Why would the FUR not be singed? If the fur isn’t burning, the meat didn’t even get warm.  Anyone, and I mean ANYONE who thinks this film in any way reflects how non-diseased wolves would behave (“30 miles from the den… “Wolves are the only animal that will seek revenge.”) needs to read “Never Cry Wolf” by Farley Mowat.    Yes: I know there are problems with that book, but seriously, these wolves ‘…sent an Omega in to test…’ one of the characters? The Wife jumped up and yelled “Wolves don’t have REDSHIRTS!!”

The cinematography was good, the acting was good, the sound was mediocre (that could be my surround sound, never can tell unless you’ve seen it both in the theater and at home) and the special effects terrible.  If possible, I would like about 65% of my rental fee back for this one – I can’t believe it cost $25,000,000 to make, and IMDB reports it made $51,000,000 at this time.

I dont’ know if I’ll make it the rest of the way through the film.

Send help. (We have pizza).

Niko

(aka Dyrewulf)