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Does anyone else have mixed feelings about the gun and shooting magazines available on the newstands? When I started getting back into target shooting at the beginning of the year, I eagerly picked up every fresh issue I could find, wanting to learn as much as possible. I am now thinking the money is better spent on BreakFree and ammunition, am quite disappointed in the wheat to chaff ratio. Some of these gunwriters, strike me as being a little full of themselves (legends in their own mind?), and after a few months reading, it starts to sound tired. Once I get past the photos, editorials and ads, it is hard to squeeze much good fresh information out. I find the Forum to be a much better source.
So, just curious, am I in a tiny minority here ,and should just keep my mouth shut, or am I not the only one?
Ed
 

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I used to have subscriptions to all the gun magazines, but any more all I read is the American Rifleman (which comes with my NRA membership) and American Handgunner. You are right most of the articles are just recycled fluff, I just read them to see what's new out.
 

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I still have a number of subscriptions and enjoy them all. I like to see what's new, read the reviews, etc. What I don't understand are the many people that get upset with the writers. Of course they are going to write good reviews or they would never get another assignment. One has to understand where they are coming from and take it as such--just like any news source. I still find the mags interesting.
 

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Excalibur said:
I still have a number of subscriptions and enjoy them all. I like to see what's new, read the reviews, etc. What I don't understand are the many people that get upset with the writers. Of course they are going to write good reviews or they would never get another assignment. One has to understand where they are coming from and take it as such--just like any news source. I still find the mags interesting.
Sensible. Gun owners are an independent lot. People here don't even agree with each other's opinions. We even argue about what ought to be facts. So of course we're not going to agree with other people just because they get published in magazines. In fact we're more likely to disagree with them because their words hang around in print for as long as we want to be irritated with them and, besides, we pay to read those words.

You've put your finger on why I read some of them sometimes: they're interesting. They're especially interesting when there are articles about something I own or would like to own, or about techniques I hadn't thought of or have been using, or by people whose writing I enjoy reading: Massad Ayoob, Clint Smith, Patrick Sweeney, and Chuck Taylor for instance. I don't have to agree with them, only consider and understand what they've said.
 

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This forum is a much better source for specific information. :rock:

Still I like American Handgunner. Really like reading John Taffin's stuff. Another that I subscribe to is Gun Tests. GT is a little thin on content, but it takes no advertising and is more likely to call a dog a dog which is unusual in the shooting mag biz.

Other than that I'm fortunate to know of a great newstand that stocks all of the big and small names which allows me to browse them for articles of interest before purchasing.
 

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Kinda OT but one of the few magazines which I find provides excellent reviews on equipment among other things is Rodale's SCUBA diving. They really say what they get out of their tests which is very commendable.
 

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I love 'em, I hate 'em

Being a "gun nut" I enjoy reading about my hobby as I'm sure you all do, too. The thing that gets my goat, though, is the overbearing advertising (every three or four pages) and the "It's new, it must be wonderfull!" tone in the articles. I'd much rather read about ways to improve existing equipment than what to replace it with and detailed regimens to keep my skills up instead of the 1,000 dollar wonder scope. Don't get me started on handgun reviews, either. Sure, most gunfight happen at spitting distance, but take the grip panels off and put it in a rest. I want accuracy in a fighting gun, too. As for, the "normal break in period", just once I want to read a gun rag author say "What's with the internal tool marks? They used to clean this up at the factory."
 

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1911 guy said:
Being a "gun nut" I enjoy reading about my hobby as I'm sure you all do, too. The thing that gets my goat, though, is the overbearing advertising (every three or four pages) and the "It's new, it must be wonderfull!" tone in the articles. I'd much rather read about ways to improve existing equipment than what to replace it with and detailed regimens to keep my skills up instead of the 1,000 dollar wonder scope. Don't get me started on handgun reviews, either. Sure, most gunfight happen at spitting distance, but take the grip panels off and put it in a rest. I want accuracy in a fighting gun, too. As for, the "normal break in period", just once I want to read a gun rag author say "What's with the internal tool marks? They used to clean this up at the factory."
Advertising sales are what pay the bills and produce the profit. I suppose that gun magazines would be willing to reduce their amount of advertising at about the same time that the rest of us demand that we get pay cuts. :D

I'd like to read more "how to," "do-it-yourself," and "how-it's-done" articles too.
 

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I like 'em. Don't rely on them for real specific information, but they do help build a general knowledge. Thats how I learned to distinguish all the different makes and models, was by looking through the mags.
There are a few good ones out there. American Handgunner is probably the best of the main stream, its sister mag, GUNS isn't bad but AM Hangunner has good procuction values since it is a bi-monthly deal.
Combat Handguns is an excellent rag, tipical reviews of guns, but lots of them, and lots of different guns, plus columns dedicated to tactics, knives, holsters, even airguns.
 

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I know a gun writer, and he said they just don't write negative reviews of guns. If a writer tests a gun, and it doesn't go well, the gun is either returned or sent to someone else, to see if it works better for them. I like the objective parts of gun reviews - it has such and such finish, ambi safety, three-dot sights, double recoil springs, etc. - but the accuracy, reliability, etc. part of the reviews are pretty worthless. "The gun functioned 100%, unless I used the 'bad' mag, or shot 200gr. JHPs . . ." Or, "The gun shot a 1-inch group, until I'd fired all five shots, which opened it up to 2 inches . . ." Articles concerning personal protection, shooting tips, gun laws, etc., are of far more value than the gun reviews.
American Handgunner is far and away my favorite gunrag.
 

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I usually read the table of contents and if there are two or more articles worth reading, I'll get it. SWAT is almost always on the list, the others vary.

I don't get the obsession with groupings either (usually from a j-frame or micro-.45 no less). The only thing more ridiculous is when they get into chronographing all the loads tested...sheesh, my eyes glaze over. Who gives a rat's a$$??

I would like more drills, compare/contrast, maybe even video reviews considering how many instructionals their are now. They will go to a gun school many times, an article type I really enjoy, so I don't see why that would be such a stretch to call Paladin/etc and ask for some videos to review.

Howard
 

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I read playboy for the articles and gun mags for the pics :p Not really with two kids so it is just the pics in the gun mags. I have now realized I turned into my father



Len
 

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My favorite "gun" rag is Rifle's Handloader followed by American Handgunner. Handloader usually has at least one or two in-depth articles with reasonable technical detail on reloading or a particular gun.

The Handloading article in the last issue of AM Handgunner had little if anything to do with handloading. In fact it was about buying factory loads in bulk. I do get a kick out of Guncrank Diaries.
 

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doctor j said:
My favorite "gun" rag is Rifle's Handloader followed by American Handgunner. Get a kick out of Guncrank Diaries.
+1 same, same.
 

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I am convinced I could make a “gun” out of cardboard and duct tape, charge $5000 for it, pay for full page monthly advertisments in American Handgunner, and Mas Ayoob/Alex Hamilton/Mike Venturino will write that it is the best handgun ever.

I do like John Taffin and the photos. The rest of AH can fall off the planet, in my not so humble opinion. :rolleyes:
 

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I like the NRA rags. I currently get American Rifleman .

AH is a favorite of mine, too. So are Rifle and Handloader.

I, too, am tired of all of the fluff pieces. However, I read G&A for a long time in order to get the "Cooper's Corner" columns.

The problem with the current crop of gun rags is the incestuous relationship they have with gun manufacturers. I wish that they would broaden thier advertising base to include many non-gun makers. That may go a long way in returning honesty to the reviews.
 

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Crazy how we return to our old habits. Wife just got me a subscription to Guns & Ammo. Read it as a kid interested in guns. Jeff Cooper's column makes the purchase worth it. I'm with Shane - I like the pictures.

Stay Safe
 

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hberttmank said:
I used to have subscriptions to all the gun magazines, but any more all I read is the American Rifleman (which comes with my NRA membership) and American Handgunner. You are right most of the articles are just recycled fluff, I just read them to see what's new out.
+1
shane45-1911 said:
I like the pictures.
:biglaugh: Yep! I get the American Rifleman (NRA membership) and America's First Freedom (my fiance's NRA membership ;)) - those have some reviews, but for other magazines I typically just stop by a store that has a magazine rack with some gun magazines on it, and buy only if there is an article that arouses my interest or if there is an article about a gun that I am interested in.
 

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i get guns and ammo, its an okay one but not great. when my subscription runs out i might switch to reloader. i used to get gun test and for no fluff reviews it was good
 
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