By Chuck Madurski
Armed Forces Journal Shoot- Out at Blackwater 2004 DVD
©2004 Army Times Publishing Co.
At the time of this writing on sale for $8.99 at http://www.mil-mall.com/
Each year at the excellent Blackwater tactical training center in Moyock, NC, the Armed Forces Journal hosts an invitation only event called the Shoot- Out at Blackwater. The purpose of this event is to provide a venue for designers, inventors, and other military weaponry suppliers to not only display their wares, but to “strut their stuff” so tospeak. Being a live-fire training center, the equipment brought here is demonstrated live in front of everyone attending. The ultimate goal being to show the military and Special Operations communities what is available, or soon to be, and who makes it and how it performs.
This DVD is from 2004 which was the fifth year in a row for the Shoot- Out and has fourteen chapters plus a high speed video segment which comprises about forty minutes of viewing time. The chapters have demonstrations of products from Chey Tac, FNH showing their shoulder fired 40mm grenade launcher that uses the high pressure MK19 ammunition, the Sage M14 EBR (Enhanced Battle Rifle), ZM Weapons, body armor form Point Blank/PACA, the awesome Blended Metal ammo from Le Mas, Ltd., the Cobb FA.50T, a .45 pistol shootout between Glock, Para Ordnance, Kimber and Beretta, an armored glass demo, the Barrett M468 (M4 carbine in the 6.8 Rem. chambering), FN showing their .338 Lapua rifle, the FN F2000 bullpup in Tactical configuration, US Ordnance treating their M60 MK43Mod1 roughly with a Knob Creek-esque attempt at an 850-round belt in one continuous burst, and the Remington Modular Combat Shotgun. The high speed video has four segments, three of which feature the blended metal ammunition against meat or steel, and the other part being video of the armored glass being shot by various guns and chamberings.
Additionally, there is a bonus twenty minutes of video divided between an excellent speed shooting demonstration by Todd Jarrett and several demo clips of the then new H&K XM-8 in action. To round out the full eighty minutes of this DVD there is one more bonus feature and that is abbreviated footage from the 2003 Shoot-Out. Accessed just like the 2004 clips, the 2003 portion has chapters on the Blended Metal ammo, the FN F2000, Chey Tac, more armored glass demos, the Alexander Arms AR variant in 6.5mm Grendel, the FN High Impulse Weapon System, the original US Ordnance M60E4 850-round burst demonstration, the FN P90 and additional slow motion video of the Blended Metal ammo versus meat.
This DVD is entertaining and informative and would be good viewing on a rainy Saturday afternoon if time at the loading bench just doesn’t seem like the thing to do. The camera work is well done, the subjects are varied enough to appeal to almost all tastes and the bonus clips only add to the overall pleasure. The only minor nit would be the fact that the chapters do not flow in one continuous video. Instead, at the end of each clip, the disk sends the viewer back to the main menu where you must select the next chapter to watch. This barely detracts from what is ultimately an excellent look at many unique and exotic weapons and other systems that are even today still state of the art.
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