April 7th, 2020

Next Generation AR with Thumb-Activated Lever Trigger

Thumb-operated Receiver TOR T.O.R. Blackwater Iron horse AR15 thumb trigger

Thumb-operated Receiver TOR T.O.R. Blackwater Iron horse AR15 thumb triggerHere’s a radical new rifle. Instead of a vertical trigger that moves rearward when pulled by the index finger, this Blackwater T.O.R. A1 rifle has a lever INSIDE the lower receiver. That lever is moved by the operator’s THUMB, causing the rifle to fire. The claimed benefits of the “thumb-gun” are: 1) Improved Ergonomics (thumb stays in alignment with point of aim); 2) Better Mechanics (thumb is strongest digit and can manipulate lever easily); 3) Enhanced Safety (trigger blade/lever is not exposed).

This AR-type rifle was developed by Iron Horse, now partnered with Blackwater Worldwide. The new T.O.R. (aka “Thumb Operated Receiver”) A1 is the industry’s first AR-platform rifle incorporating patent-pending, lever-driven fire technology.

Thumb-operated Receiver TOR T.O.R. Blackwater Iron horse AR15 thumb trigger

Iron Horse A1 Precision Rifle
The manufacturer has made some interesting claims about this new thumb-lever system. Blackwater/Iron Horse claims that “Multiple samples of users show a shorter learning curve and reduced shot group size”, and that the design “lends to greater accuracy in precision shooting… with its inherent natural ergonomics.” One claim we do believe, is that the thumb lever may help disabled shooters. Additionally the manufacturer notes that because the “trigger guard completely encases the trigger” there is less chance of snagging the trigger in brush or vegetation.

How the Lever Trigger Works
The operator’s thumb goes into a port in the top of the polymer grip (see grip photo above). This allows ambidextrous firing by right- or left-handed shooters. The thumb points forward, in line with the barrel. The lever itself is contained INSIDE the lower. Watch this video to see how it works:

Is the Thumb Lever a Game-Changer?
“Ironhorse’s revolutionary trigger system has the potential to be a game changer” states Eric Prince, Founder of Blackwater Worldwide. “Our in-house testing has shown a significant decrease in shot group size when compared to a traditional AR-15 trigger set. We think this technology … could replace traditional triggers altogether at some point.” The manufacturer states that the thumb-operated trigger “has been shown to greatly enhance the experience of a large portion of the shooting community and makes shooting possible for those who have limited mobility or severely injured fingers.”

Thumb-operated Receiver TOR T.O.R. Blackwater Iron horse AR15 thumb trigger

About Iron Horse and Blackwater Worldwide
Iron Horse Firearms, based in Salt Lake City, Utah, was founded by a former U.S. Marine Ryan McDonald. The Patent-Pending Thumb-Operated Receiver was first developed in August of 2016 and became a fully operational system in the fall of 2018. Moving forward, Iron Horse Firearms will be doing business as part of Blackwater Worldwide.

In 2019, Blackwater Worldwide re-entered the firearms and ammunition market in the United States. In its first year of operation, it has acquired or developed multiple firearms lines and a proprietary ammunition line. The company is headquartered in Concord, NC.

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April 7th, 2020

Blue States Seek to Disable Insurance for Gun Owners

insurance commissioner gun ccw law montana NRA

Article based on report from Montana Shooting Sports Association.
Some states with anti-gun leadership are aggressively trying to eliminate insurance programs that help protect gun owners who may be forced to use a gun in self-defense. These liberal-controlled states claim they can block such self-defense insurance coverage because insurance is not allowed for an “illegal activity”. Interesting theory — since when did self-defense become illegal? The right of armed self-protection is enshrined in the U.S. Constitution.

Most states have a position titled “Insurance Commissioner”, a public official (usually elected) who regulates insurance matters. We are seeing harsh anti-gun policies being pushed through by State Insurance Commissioners, often as the behest of Democratic-party Governors or Legislative leaders.

For example, in Washington State, the Office of Insurance Commissioner (OIC) sent cease and desist letters to the NRA (regarding previously offered Carry Guard*), the United States Concealed Carry Association (USCCA), the Armed Citizen Legal Defense Network, U.S. Law Shield, Firearms Legal Protection, and CCW Safe, demanding that all quit doing business in Washington State. California’s Insurance Commissioner blocked NRA Carry Guard Insurance, and the same thing is likely to happen in other states in the months ahead…

insurance commissioner gun ccw law montana NRA

Gary Marbut, President of the Montana Shooting Sports Association, says that citizens need to be concerned with state candidates for Insurance Commissioner (or equivalent state official): “In Montana, the function of an insurance commissioner is performed by the State Auditor, an elected position most people don’t think about much. Because of the attack on self-defense insurance in other states, the race for State Auditor is worth paying attention to in Montana. As voters, you and your friends should know which candidates pledge that self-defense insurance will NOT be targeted for eradication in Montana.”

That advice should be headed by citizens in other states as well. With so many attacks on Second Amendment rights from liberal politicians (and the mainstream news media), we don’t want state insurance rules to be used to disarm law-abiding citizens, or subject them to increased risk of lawsuits.


*The NRA’s Carry Guard Insurance program is no longer offered. Cancellation of this program is due largely to aggressive actions by State Insurance Commissioners in blue states such as California, New York, and Washington.

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