I have had my Kel Tec PF9 for a few years now, and haven't had an ounce of trouble with it. I've shot it well and it continues to be one of my favorite concealed carry guns. That was until a few weeks ago, I started to have misfeeds.
As you can see, the chambered round would go off well, but the case would remain in the chamber as the next round try to come up through the magazine. My initial thought was that it was ammunition. After trying a couple different rounds, I still continued to have the same problem. Then I started to think it may be the extractor. It did seem as if the extractor was just slipping off the spent round, leaving it behind.
I went back to the house, jumped on Google and found the solution! Kel Tec PF9's have been having extractor problems, and a lot of people said that a replacement extractor fixed their troubles. I had a great experience with Kel Tec customer service. After a couple back and forth comments on a support ticket, the new extractor was on its way! The real work started after I received the new extractor... The bolt that holds the extractor in place, along with the firing pin, was TOUGH!! It was a T11 Torx bit. I grabbed the proper size, and STRIP... This lead me to try different sizes torx, common and phillips head screwdrivers, and nothing. I even went to Ace Hardware and bought a screw extractor kit, meant to remove a stripped screw, to no avail. Lastly, I added a little PB Blaster, then used a dremel tool and small disc to cut a slot into the screw head. I barely had enough space to get the disc to the screw head without hitting the slide, but managed to get a decent slot cut into the screw. The moment of truth... AND SUCCESS! The screw came out!
To celebrate our 10th wedding anniversary, my wife and I decided to get away a couple months ahead of the anniversary to enjoy a little vacation. 10 years prior, we went to Sandals Negril Jamaica. It was everything we could have asked for, and we have been looking forward to going back to a Sandals Resort at some point, and our 10th anniversary seemed to be the best time!
Why the Bahamas?
Why didn't we go back to Sandals Negril? Airline points! Due to my wife's business, she had obtained a companion pass from Southwest Airlines, and had a decent amount of points accumulated. Southwest had just so happened to finalize routes from Chicago to the Bahamas shortly before our trip!
We made the couple hour drive to Chicago, hopped onto a plane, and flew straight through to the Bahamas! The Sandals in the Bahamas, the Royal Bahamian and Emerald Bay, both looked amazing. We settled on the Royal Bahamian by feel mostly, but we also knew that the resort was being renovated shortly before our arrival.
The Private Island
Caution When Ordering: Updated Dec 12, 2019
As an unbiased reviewer, I've heard enough recent issues with order fulfillment and customer service responses that I feel the need to give an update and a caution.
As you can see in the reviews below, some customers are experiencing issues with receiving their radio straps. I've also received an email or two from his unhappy customers. If you follow JP Custom Leatherworks on their social media, you can see that he's still working and fulfilling orders. My guess... he's a little too busy for the orders he's taking, leading to delayed fulfillment and the inability to get to customer service requests as needed.
I still believe in the quality of the radio strap I received. I've continued to be very happy with the quality of my radio strap and how well it's held up over the last two years.
I'm stoked to be able to write about the amazing customer service and stand out product from Joe at JP Custom Leatherworks! I worked with Joe on a custom firefighter radio strap and radio holster, something different than the standard Boston Leather and something more reasonable than the Second Alarm radio strap. A handful of guys I work with at the fire department already have some radio straps, a few different brands, but nobody had ventured into Joe's products. I couldn't wait to see how his products compared, and I couldn't be happier!
As a fire department, we use Motorola portable fire radios. When we find ourselves in an IDLH (Immediately Dangerous for Life and Health) environment, this could mean a smoke filled room and/or a hot environment, we have to be prepared. This is where firefighter radio straps are becoming popular. Traditional placement of fire radios are in an exterior coat pocket, and the cord of the mic is exposed to the dangerous environment. Recent changes and studies have shown benefit to protecting the radio in a holster and doing so with it under your bunker coat. Then, the mic can be run through the opening of the bunker coat, exposing just what is needed, instead of the full length of the mic cord. This has led me to try a radio strap in training and during fires.
After a couple emails back and forth, Joe and I had decided on a leather type, stamps, and colors for the stamps. I was really happy with the turnaround time as well. All of the custom leather companies are 6-8 weeks out for custom radio straps, and JP Custom Leatherworks was no different. Want to know what was different with Joe? He actually emailed me a couple times throughout the process to let me know how the process was going! I've mentioned this to a couple of firefighters I work with and they are all floored with this! None of the other companies kept them updated.
After a recent visit with my Edward Jones advisor, I was informed of a new policy that Edward Jones is utilizing. They are moving towards a different model of fee structure. Now, I'm a firefighter, so I'm not investing thousands and thousands... more like hundreds, and at times, tens! So according to my advisor, any change in my investing would have started my account under the new fee structure, which would cost me a lot more money in fees over the year. I've been wanted to invest a slight bit more, but I would be losing money each year if I made an increase in investments due to the fee structure.
With this change, I started to look elsewhere for an investing vehicle that I could play around with. I like the idea investing in some stocks that I'm interested in, but can't afford that kind of risk when investing in only one stock. After some searching, I found Acorns, Robin Hood and Stash. I signed in, messed around with each, and I ended up with an Acorns account and have been enjoying it over the last couple of months.
I wanted Robinhood to work for me the most. I loved the idea of zero-commission trades and the fact that I could choose which stocks I wanted to invest in. But, quickly I learned, Robinhood was not supported by my regional bank 1st Source Bank... Bummer, onto the next one.
In June of this year, while vacationing in Hawaii, I was blessed to be able to take my family to Pearl Harbor. As someone who is interested in history, WWII history in particular, this was a must-visit! I've visited before, when I was 15, but unfortunately wasn't mature enough to understand what I was looking at. This visit was going to be different!
The format of Pearl Harbor is a little interesting. There are a handful of exhibits that you can see for free. There are some memorials and other features placed around the harbor, but most of the big things, you'll need to buy a reservation/ticket for. The most competitive ticket is the tour of the USS Arizona, the most important feature of the whole experience.
There are a couple options. The first option is to pay a pretty penny and buy the all inclusive tour. This can be done through visitpearlharbor.org or pearlharboroahu.com. After some discussion with customer support at Pearl Harbor, we decided to buy the Passport to Pearl Harbor tickets from visitpearlharbor.org, which is the Pearl Harbor Visitor's Bureau. We bought the standard Passport, not the deluxe, to save a little bit of money.
Now, the Passport DOES NOT INCLUDE tickets to see the USS Arizona. We were driving ourselves because we wanted the flexibility of getting there when we wanted to, and leaving when we wanted to. We have three children, 8, 6 ,and 4, so we wanted the option of leaving if the 4 year old started to melt down. We could have bought an all inclusive tour pass, tour bus and all, but we would have been on their schedule. We decided to drive ourselves, which caused us to get creative with the tickets. So we bought the Passport, which left us responsible for buying the USS Arizona tickets. The tickets are free, if you want to arrive at 6am and wait in line. There are a limited amount of tickets, and no guarantee that you'll get tickets. But customer service recommended that we try to grab tickets online through Recreation.gov. This website allows buying tickets for many of America's parks, forests, and monuments, including the USS Arizona. This only costs $1.50 per ticket service fee. The catch with this service though, is that the tickets are opened up only 24 hours prior. We rolled the dice, jumped online 24 hours before we had planned on going, and were able to buy 9 tickets without a problem. We wanted to go a little earlier in the day, but no tickets were available. We ended up going right around noon, which worked well. All in all, we paid $65 per adult, $35 per child, and the service fee for the USS Arizona tickets. This allowed us access to everything we wanted to see, gave us the flexibility to do what we wanted, and we weren't pressed for time!
In April of this, I was fortunate to visit Louisville and we explored the Kentucky Bourbon Trail, check out the blog post here! As we left town, we had a few hours to kill, and it was drizzling out. As a lifelong baseball fan, I couldn't miss stopping by the Louisville Slugger Museum and Factory!
While in the Granger, Mishawaka, South Bend, Elkhart area, you have to check out Primal Kitchen in Granger, Indiana! If you're in town, enjoying a Notre Dame football game, Primal Kitchen! This is the place to go for clean eating, paleo, and organic food, which is at a premium here in Northern Indiana.
Knowing the owners personally, their talent, desire and work ethic will serve this business well. This has been their passion for many years, and I'm so excited to see them bring this kind of food and drink option to the Granger and South Bend area. Primal Kitchen is new to the restaurant game, and this is actually the first Primal Kitchen Restaurant. The second one, will open in Culver City, California, with others coming to Santa Cruz, Portland, Sacramento, Anchorage, and Los Angeles soon!
One of my favorite breakfast/lunch options is chicken and waffles, and I was so excited to hear that Primal Kitchen would be offering their take on it, breakfast, lunch and dinner!
After finishing up with our first dive and changing out tanks, we were on our way to our second dive location. We went to a shallow location, which was protected from the wind a little better. We had a little snack on the boat before diving. There were plenty of options and some water for everyone. There were a few more new divers that weren't qualified to dive at the deeper depth, so they took a little while to get into the water and settled. Once they were off the boat, the certified divers were able to get in and have at it.
Immediately, we were surrounded by a bunch of fish! The first thing we saw were a ton of Sergeant Majors! Then we saw a bunch of Yellowtail Snapper as well. There were a couple parrotfish, of some variety that you could actual hear chomping on the coral! At the 32 second mark of the video, I snuck up on a squirrelfish, hiding in a coral alcove.
This being my first ocean dive, I was shocked and amazed at how big the ocean was, but how small these individual environments were, and they were teeming with life! A whole world and ecosystem could be find on each individual coral bunch, it was so cool to see!
At the :38 second mark, you can see the parrotfish, chomping away!
During the Fall of 2016, my wife and I celebrated our 10th anniversary with a trip to the Bahamas. A long 10 years ago, our travel agent recommended we go to Sandals Negril, in Jamaica, and we LOVED it! So for our anniversary, we wanted to go back to Sandals, and we couldn't have been happier with Sandals Royal Bahamian.
As a certified diver, I couldn't pass up the opportunity to go diving in the Caribbean! One of the great things about Sandals is that they provide free SCUBA excursions for their guests. This made my decision to leave my wife for a morning a littler easier.
The process to dive was rather easy as well. I went to the dive shop they day or two prior to the day I wanted to dive. I talked with the dive staff, who were awesome! They made me feel right at home, and made everything super simple. They looked at my cert card, and logbook to make sure that I had dove recently. I dive regularly at work as a diver for the fire department. There was a medical waiver that I had with me as well, that was needed filled out by my primary physician. I had dropped the form off at my family doctor, who gave me a clean bill of health and filled out the paperwork. The Sandals dive staff wanted that paperwork as well.
The next day, I arrived at the dive shop around 8am. They handed out some rental gear, mask, and fins. I opted out of the wet suit, having become used to diving in cold water at home... I figured I'd be okay with the 70-80 degree Caribbean, and I was. Throughout the week, we had noticed the dive boat picking divers and equipment up at the main pier, but over the first couple days of our stay, the wind and waves had noticeable increased. We found out that for our dive, we had to board a small tour bus, travel to the other side of the island to escape the wind a little bit. We boarded the bus, drove for 20 minutes, to an inland pier where the dive boat was. Sandals dive staff did all of the heavy lifting, which was awesome! We boarded the boat, received some instructions and off we went!
The boat ride was about 30-40 minutes, and the waves made it interesting! I thought it was great, but someone that is prone to sea sickness could have had a problem with it. Everyone on the boat survived without yarfing up their breakfast and we reached our first dive spot.
Our first dive was the deep dive, max depth of 70'. We were going to dive along a shelf, then to a couple of wrecks. Here's the video!
A Review of Chubby Trout from Elkhart Indiana, RV Capital of the World!
This is the first time visiting Chubby Trout's new location. The building is awesome, super cool, barn wood everywhere with an amazing little patio area. We were there a little before dinner so the place was pretty well empty. Having been to their old location, we knew we were going to enjoy some sushi!
Jack of All Trades, Master of None