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Just incase you don’t already know everything there is to know about guns, I’d like to bring this little sliver of multimedia to your attention.

The 3rd edition of the Firearms Guide is a comprehensive DVD that presents over 55,000 firearms and ammunition from 500 manufacturers around the world. If that wasn’t impressive enough, it also contains 3,000 printable firearm schematics, parts lists, full specifications and even videos.

The Firearms Guide is simple to use, too. I popped my copy into my disc drive, and started with the “Multimedia Guide Help” to get a feel for what the DVD contained and ways to access the wealth information. Turns out, you can search for firearms by manufacturer, make and model, caliber, barrel length, retail prices, and even by finishes.

I started with searches of two firearms I currently have on hand, an ArmaLite AR-10(T), an AR carbine in .308 Winchester, and Smith and Wesson’s new M&P15 in 300 Whisper. The Firearms Guide brought up features and specs of each rifle, an image you can zoom in or out of, and details on the respective manufacturers, as well as the current suggested retail prices.

A “Show Me Ammo” tag is located at the bottom of each firearm page, and a mouse click takes you to the ammunition makers producing appropriate ammo in this caliber. I actually discovered a maker of .300 Whisper ammo I wasn’t aware of–and I’d thought I’d already tracked down everyone making Whisper ammo.

I then examined the Schematics section, starting with the two rifles mentioned above. Clear diagrams and detailed parts lists. I also took a trip back in time, and looked up my old Sheridan Blue Streak, a 5mm pump air rifle I used to take my first squirrels and rabbits with as a 13-year-old newbie hunter nearly four decades ago. There it was, and the parts all looked familiar as I took apart the air rifle many a time, eager to figure out the inner workings. The schematics here would’ve made the reassembly much easier!

The Guide also contains an extensive listing of Federal Firearms Licenses, over 62,000 FFL’s in fact, searchable by type (dealer, pawnbroker, manufacturer, etc.) state, and zip code. Plus, the DVD has hundreds of printable targets, from standard bull’s-eyes and similar targets, to numerous objects and animals.

The Firearms Guide 3rd Edition is one of those “must haves” you don’t realize is a must have until you get a chance to use it.

Suggested retail, $39.95.

website: www.firearmsguide.com

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