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Mailbag Monday

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Where does one buy real paracord?

-From Kathy H.

Answer: When it comes to paracord, the key is to make sure you buy paracord 550 that is made in the USA. A lot of places sell paracord 550 that is made in China and the quality isn’t the same. I’ve tested so many types of paracord and unless it’s made in the USA it doesn’t hold up, so stay away from the cheap stuff made overseas.

One place I would check out is called Atwood Rope. They sell paracord 550 on their website and everything I’ve purchased from them has been the real stuff and is good quality. But you can buy any 550 paracord made in the US and you should be good to go.


My family and I are getting ready to take a month long trip in an RV. We are going to visit National Parks all over the Western U.S. Can I conceal carry my gun inside a National Park?

-From Clint R.

Answer: Gun laws inside national parks fall to the state the park is located in. So, you can carry your gun in the park if you are allowed under state laws.

But, it is illegal to hunt or target shoot in a national park unless you have a special hunting permit.

Also, it is illegal to carry a concealed weapon inside federal buildings, including national park buildings. So, if you were going into a visitor’s center you would need to leave your gun in the car.

Don’t forget that many national parks may be in more than one state. If you are inside the park, but enter another state, you need to follow each state’s laws.


I just purchased two new generators. One is a solar panel generator and the other is gasoline. Would an EMP blast affect the generators?

-From Matthew F.

Answer: I know a lot of people are worried about the effects of an EMP. The truth is, no one can say with 100% accuracy what items will be damaged or what will survive.

With that being said, solar panels themselves would most likely survive an EMP but the problem is the wires and other connections to the panels. I recommend using the best surge protector and wiring you can find.

The same goes for your gasoline generator. The gas will be fine, but it depends on the electronic components and if they are able to withstand the EMP.


What is your opinion on adding a silencer to my home defense pistol? Is this a good idea?

-From Steve C.

Answer: It’s a lengthy process to buy a suppressor. First, you need to find a local FFL class III dealer. You would go to them and fill out the ATF application.

Once you fill out the application, you would send that to the ATF along with a $200 check and wait to hear back for approval.

My point is, it’s a long process. Silencers are a lot of fun, but it isn’t a “must have” item.

You don’t need one for home defense and I don’t have any on my home defense guns. If you’re worried about your hearing, don’t be. You’ll experience auditory exclusion during a real gun fight.


Do credit card monitoring services such as LifeLock, require the subscriber to provide all their personal numbers like social security number, account numbers, etc? How do they stop a rogue employee from stealing all this detailed information?

-From Rebecca L.

Answer: I’ve never used a credit card monitoring service. But, you are right that they would need very personal information about you in order to monitor your credit.

I have nothing against companies such as LifeLock. However, I don’t use them because you can pretty much do the same thing they do without paying for it.

For instance, I recommend having a credit freeze in place with the three main credit bureaus. This will prevent anyone from opening an account with your credit. The only way to access your credit is with the PIN provided by the credit bureau.


My wife and I just purchased a new home. The front door is two glass French doors. I’m worried that these can be kicked in. Do you know of any way to secure them, yet allow us to use them when needed?

-From Rob M.

Answer: Many folks like the look of French doors but there is no doubt they are less secure.

To help with this, I recommend a product such as NightLock. This is metal plate-looking device that you drill into the floor. Then, you slide on another metal piece and the brace will prevent the door from being kicked in. It’s not a 100% guarantee that it will stop an intruder, but it will at least slow them down enough for you to grab a gun and defend yourself.

As for the glass, you can install security window films such as one from 3M that will help hold the glass in place. Again, this won’t stop the glass from breaking but it will make it more difficult to do so.

Lastly, I would install a security system with a glass break sensor. This sensor should be located near the French doors so it can alert you if the glass is broken.

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