Michael Helms

7 posts
Mike is a firearms historian and handgun shooting enthusiast. With almost 20 years of experience in the shooting sports, Mike loves to contrast a company’s latest offerings with its ancestral guns. He doesn’t shy away from modern technology, though, and some of his favorite guns are “plastic fantastics.” A devotee to iron sights and a believer in the Weaver stance, he has nearly given up on leather holsters and now prefers kydex. Mike sits on the board of directors for the Smith & Wesson Collectors Association and is a member of the American Society of Arms Collectors, and he is writing a book about Smith & Wesson’s Model 1 revolver. He holds a degree in history and lives near the bayous of southern Louisiana. Mike is a trained firearms instructor and competitive shooter. He is a member of the USCCA.
Firearms glossary of terms
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A Glossary For Firearms: All Terms and Gun Lingo Explained

Anyone who uses firearms needs to have a full understanding of their anatomy, capabilities, and power. It’s also crucial to know how to discharge firearms safely, how to maintain them, and how to store them. This is why we’ve compiled this glossary which includes all of the important terms that pertain to firearms. Gun owners ... Read more
The right side of the Smith & Wesson Model 617. Note the windage adjustment screw for the fully adjustable rear sight.
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[Review] Smith and Wesson 617: The Perfect Revolver?

Smith and Wesson 617 summary Introduction A descendent of the 1899 K-frame Smith & Wesson’s Model 617 shares the company’s K frame heritage that stretches back to 1899. K frame guns were worn by American soldiers in both World Wars, served as duty weapons to virtually every police agency in the country, and provided millions ... Read more
The Palmetto State Armory PA-10 cuts an attractive silhouette. It is shown here with a Leupold VX-Freedom 1.5-4x20 scope with an illuminated firedot MOA ring and a Magpul M-LOK Bipod.
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PSA AR10 Review – Steak Features for Hamburger Prices

Summary Palmetto State Armory’s Gen3 PA10 platform (PSA AR10) is a solid and well-made performer in the AR-10 space, and at its price point (MSRP of $1349, but it can sometimes be found for $1179) it is tough to beat. PSA’s superb reputation for after-service support shouldn’t be necessary, but it’s comforting to know that ... Read more
USCCA title
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USCCA membership: Training You Cannot Afford Not To Have [Reviewed by a firearms instructor]

Introduction Here are two scenarios. One will probably feel familiar to you. In the first scenario: you recently became a first-time gun buyer along with five million other Americans over the last year. Maybe you had been thinking about purchasing a firearm for some time, or it may have been a spontaneous decision. In either ... Read more