Tag Archives: drillamerica

The Ultra-Reinforced DrillMaster Bayonet

DrillMaster and Air Force Honor Guard Airmen
TSgt Carmen Hassell and the proud Airmen of the USAF Honor Guard Supply

It took three months to create the final version of the Ultra-Reinforced DrillMaster bayonet. The DrillMaster worked with the Air Force Honor Guard Drill Team and Supply Airmen to create this extremely reinforced bayonet.

The picture below┬áis the final version. extra spot welds and a small plate of steel to reinforce the handle. This DrillMaster Bayonet* is the Air Force Honor Guard Drill Team’s new practice bayonet.

DrillMaster Ultra-Reinforced Bayonet

How it Began
An Airman on the current AFHG Drill Team, SrA Jason Black, contacted my about my bayonets since they do not have a sharp edge or point- a much safer alternative than what they use in performances. The issue was training new members of the team and having them more comfortable with not only spinning a rifle, but having a bayonet on the end.

The Welded DrillMaster Bayonet was the answer, or so we thought. That and two more versions broke after training with it for a while. They needed something extremely strong to take the rigors of a new drill team member constantly dropping the rifle without the constant breakage that the team experienced. SrA Gabriel Goldsborough and finally, A1C Johnathen Howard finished the whole process.

You can now benefit from these three months of work and information exchange between the USAF Honor Guard Drill Team and The DrillMaster. Click here to go to the DrillMaster Bayonet page.

*Patent pending


About Rifle Tape Design

Rifle Tape Design- Less is More

A friend of mine, Antonio Carreras, asked for some advice for his rifle tape design. This first picture is what he had accomplished:

Rifle Tape Design

In the picture above you can see black and red tape in horizontal stripes on a white stock (this is the Glendale DrillAmerica 1903 replica rifle- the only rifle available with a white, black or brown stock). This is a great color combination on a white background. Blue would also work well. A lighter color like yellow might work, but only if it has tape of a darker color on either side and even then it may not work all that well with the larger white background.

On with the critique of the picture above I wrote, consistency in tape design would work better. The red-in-black on white is very eye catching. A sling is a must- a sling completes the look of the rifle.

As you can see in the tape design in the first picture, the inconsistency of the design looks a bit confusing. While having the red-in-black in the middle of the rifle, one may be able to pick up either single color in a place here or there, but if it is too far away from the middle, the color use may be lost and look confusing.

Rifle Tape Design

For the second picture I suggested that Antonio may want to remove the tape at the upper sling swivel (less is more). But for him to see what it looks like when spinning, it may be too much color. The key here is seeing what the design looks like when spinning.

School Colors
Many replica rifles come in black and this is the perfect palette on which to create a design. The Army JROTC unit that I’ve worked with on Merritt Island has school colors of gold and black. Yellow tape was perfect for the black Daisy Drill rifles that the male cadets use and the black DrillAmerica Parade Rifles (also available in brown and white) that the female cadets use.

A Spinning Design
Creating a design that looks different or actually reveals a recognizable image during spinning can be a challenge, but it has been accomplished! Eron “Spinsane” Fayson, I friend of mine for a number of years, created the design pictured below. The tape design on the rifle at the bottom of the picture reveals a the number “5” when the rifle is spinning fast enough.

Rifle Tape Design

When Eron developed this design and revealed it to the drill world we were all amazed at how the “5” appeared. It was a first back then, a few years ago, and now needs to be further explored. Notice how the tape is minimal (again, less is more) and works well.

Horizontal stripes all over the rifle don’t necessarily work all that well. Vertical stripes really don’t work at all unless they are strategically placed on the rifle and specifically part of a design. However…

Night drilling?
Do I have an idea for you! A friend of mine works an odd schedule with school taking up most of his time, so he mostly works on his drill routine at night. But he has a black Daisy Drill Rifle. It’s difficult to see. Until now:

Tape a Rifle

Besides the, uh, colorful background, the tape, as you can see, is quite eye-catching and Max, my friend who sent me this picture, really like the look as well as having it help him see the rifle in low light.

Experiment, find your design. Have fun!

Here are some wonderful designs submitted by Omar Zamora, a drill coach and exhibition Driller.

Omar's Rifles1 Omar's Rifles2 Omar's Rifles3 Omar's Rifles4 Omar's Rifles7 Omar's Rifles8 Omar's Rifles9 Omar's Rifles10 Omar's Rifles11 Omar's Rifles12

drill rifle, drillamerica, daisy drill rifle, parade rifle, 1903, tape a rifle, how to tape a rifle, taping a rifle

DrillMaster Reviews the Glendale DrillAmerica M1 Garand with Angel Solis

Angel and I were together for this review after I brought him up to Kentucky to give my Cadet Joint Service Honor Guard Academy cadets a taste of what armed exhibition drill is all about.

The DrillAmerica M1 Garand and M1903 are the best ceremonial rifles you can buy especially since they come in chromed versions. For Drillers, no better beginning rifle and these rifles can last well into years of exhibition drill if the Driller does not desire switching to a demilitarized rifle.

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The DrillAmerica M1 Garand Replica Rifle Review

Angel Solis with The DrillMaster

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The DrillAmerica Parade Rifle is Here!

Yes Drillers, it’s here! Glendale (www.paradestore.com) has developed a better rifle for parade and alternative arms use! Dubbed the DrillAmerica Parade Rifle, it is the newest addition to the DrillAmerica family of outstanding drill rifles.

No more flimsy, lightweight wood! The new rifle has a resin stock, just like its DrillAmerica siblings. Even better, it comes with a black, brown or white stock!

“Full 42″ size, 4.2 lbs, high impact resin, nickel-plated barrel and bolt, rubber butt plate, stacking swivel, operating bolt action and clicking trigger. Includes a black heavy web rifle sling with nickel hardware. No bayonet lug. Recommended for parade use and Alternative Arms Drillers.”

The Newest Kid on the Block

August 1st can’t get here soon enough!

For those of you not in-the-know, Glendale Industries, paradestore.com, will release it’s sister DrillAmerica Rifle to the original M1 Garand Replica. Yes, ladies and germs, the military drill world welcomes the new DrillAmerica M1903 replica! [cue applause]

It comes in two flavors: black or chrome metal.

DrillMaster will be testing it shortly to provide a review, but in the meantime, feast thine eyes:

Hold the phone– it comes with a bayonet lug! [a perfect place to have your DrillMaster Bayonet securely seated]

Image courtesy of Glendale Ind.

Armed Driller Alternatives

‘Part One’ of this post is here: Psst, Hey Buddy.

Armed Exhibition Drill Rifles for Sale

The above blog post is great if you want to buy a demilitarized rifle or even a working 1903, M14 or M1 Garand, but what else is out there and are these alternatives right for military drill? Well, let’s look and see:

The Color Guard Rifle

Let’s start with a hot button issue for some Drillers. The (marching band) color guard rifle. Why is this such a hot issue with some? Because it is not a “real” rifle and only weighs about two pounds. The biggest problem with using this type of rifle is a Driller using it like it’s an eight-pound demil. Does this work? Not on your life. This rifle is designed to be whipped around the body at lightning speed and thrown for a 10-revolution toss. Pretending otherwise just makes that Driller look silly. How can they be used? Younger Drillers, for a start. They can be used with solo Drillers and teams as well, but need to be used according to their design.



The DrillAmerica M1 Garand

Then there is the Glendale Industries DrillAmerica Rifle. A fine and affordable M1 Replica that is actually outstanding for honor guard ceremonial use ad good for Drillers. The problem with the DA is that once it gets banged and dinged, it has to be relegated to the practice rifle group. There are some sharpish edges (like the trigger guard), but nothing too serious. What about the moving bolt? It’s a neat idea, but it sticks more than it works.


For the Glendale DrillAmerica M1903 see: The Newest Kid on the Block


The Daisy Drill Rifle 1903

The Daisy Drill Rifle. A great number of Drillers use a Daisy or a hybrid “Spraisy” (Springfield M1903A3 + Daisy Drill Rifle). Currently, this is the choice of world class Drillers for the most part, besides having a demil’d rifle.




The DrillMaster M14 Prototype

The DrillMaster M14 is not in production and may not ever be due to costs. It is virtually unbreakable and the Driller can repair scrapes and scratches. MCJROTC and even NJROTC units are a perfect fit for this rifle.



Keystone Arsenal: M1 Garand, M1 Garand Tanker (6 inches shorter), Krag Jorensen and several others. These are beautiful rifles, but they are only for ceremonial use and not for drill since they are breakable.


The Color Guard Saber

What about a Saber or Sword? These are great pieces of equipment that are used by a small number of drill teams and many armed team commanders. Sometimes an issue arises: the competition host does not allow the either of these pieces of equipment out of the hand of the Driller due to safety concerns. Understandable, but still a big pain; this puts severe limits on the Driller! Hello spinnable saber! It’s not exactly the same as a military saber, but is extremely close.

Now, you can make your own rifle at home! See this article.

The Color Guard Airblade

And then there is the Airblade. Who will be adventurous enough to drill with this? :-) Click the picture to be taken to the web site where it is for sale.

How to Become a Certified Visual Judge

The World Drill Association and DrillMaster now offer a training and certification program for judges for the military drill world. All aspects of military drill come under the visual category and should be judged as such. That is where the program comes in. There are four visual captions:

1. Overall Effect
2. Composition Analysis
3. Movement
4. Equipment

Also a judging position, but not a caption is:

5. Timing and Penalties

To become a certified judge, here is what you have to do (this is all at your own speed):

1. Purchase The WDA Adjudication Manual
2. Read it
3. Pick a caption on which you would like to concentrate and get certification and study it over and over
4. Study that caption, begin watching videos on the internet of teams and solos and make commentaries based on your caption on that video (use your computer to record yourself- yes everyone’s voice sounds strange to them- but you need to be able to talk about your caption during a performance!)
5. Use the WDA score sheet for your caption to score that performance
6. Repeat steps 3 through 5
7. During your study, submit your commentaries to get feedback for necessary improvements, if needed
8. When you think you are ready, you will be given a short multiple-choice test and also shown several preselected videos in which you must make a commentary and give scores
9. When you pass, you will be given a certificate that says you are a certified WDA Judge for the caption you chose, you then have the option to repeat the steps above for each caption

When you have been certified, it will be time to obtain Continuing Education for the WDA Judge. This book takes you through a more in-depth study of ranking and rating.

When do you want to be a certified judge? It’s mostly up to you. How long will it take? At least six months of study and practice. Can I do it quicker? Probably not. There is no immediate short cut: Study. Practice. Repeat.

So then what? The WDA already has some drill meets where the adjudication system is used, is always looking to add more competitions and will be sponsoring competitions in each state. As more judges are certified and word spreads of real feedback being given to performers, more competitions will want to use certified judges. It will all take time.

The plan is to have groups of the WDA Adjudication Corps in each state with judge coordinators and trainers.

Are you a veteran? The WDA and DrillMaster have developed the Veteran Adjudication Program. The only difference from then above information is that, with sponsorship, the books will be free.


Tulane 2012 Solo Commentaries

The Mardis Gras Drill Meet at Tulane University 2012 was a great success! I was there judging solos. There were 12 competitors and all did a great job. The cadets from West Point, University of South Carolina NROTC and Norwich all pulled away from the others with great routines. I forgot my digital voice recorder, but used my Android phone’s voice recorder and it worked extremely well! However, there was one issue: dead battery by the last routine. No problem, a young lady from Norwich University was able to step up with her Android phone and let me use her voice recorder for Preston Huntington’s routine. That’s why you only see 11 of the commentaries.

It was great to see not only the solos, but with the big breaks in between the performances, some platoon XD performances as well. Some of the schools displayed variations in timing and step style and showed a concerted effort in programing and orientation (nicely done USAFA!!).

The great thing about Tulane this year was the introduction of the World Drill Association Adjudication System as a parallel to the standard judging system used. Solos were given the opportunity to hear professional adjudication feedback

I also enjoyed speaking with the teams, soloists, parents and instructors as well as some of the great Marine judges from Paris Island.

The day was also a good learning experience. Right Mr. Waddington? :-)

Below are the links to the commentaries (automatic download).

Tulane: http://www.mediafire.com/?lua9e9vf8ecq120

Citidel 2: http://www.mediafire.com/?6qa9m3vm9c72x89

USMMA: http://www.mediafire.com/?qr3bd5dcxq5cbaq

TAMU: http://www.mediafire.com/?e5eucaapndscc7k

UT Austin 2: http://www.mediafire.com/?lejm7e4kgmgede4

UT Austin 1: http://www.mediafire.com/?uy08jqjhbjqjxgc

West Point: http://www.mediafire.com/?tc4d342v922ijtf

University of Florida: http://www.mediafire.com/?dvimvvujbrj9ry3

University of South Carolina: http://www.mediafire.com/?7yt574wco0ox2zw

Citidel 1: http://www.mediafire.com/?t38b1tqhcbhyce2