Monday, October 12, 2015

AR-15 Twist Rate Breakdown

This article on AR-15 barrel twist rate over at Stag is excellent. For the less initiated who are only going to shoot the most common 55 grain M193  and  62 grain M855 (or similar wt bullets) just get whatever twist rate is cheapest for a given brand of chrome lined barrel.

It is only at the margins where things start to matter. To briefly summarize faster twist rate favors heavier bullets and slower twist lighter ones. If you want to shoot the newly popular 77 grain open tip match ammo which are well reputed for both long range accuracy and terminal ballistics you want a 1/7 or 1/8 barrel. If you are a varmit shooter always using those light 50 grain bullets go 1/9.

Good info to have.

Sunday, October 11, 2015

Prepping Through Dry Stretches

There are certainly different levels of preparedness. Some folks are happy with a case of buckshot for the family shotgun, a good water filter,  a stash of emergency food sufficient for a regional disaster (say 30-60 days) and a shoe box full of batteries for flashlights and radios. Aside from rotating canned food if you go that way (which is a good idea it has a lot of pro's and limited downsides specifically weight and occasional need to rotate them) and batteries, which with some organization can be done through normal use this guy is done.

Other folks want higher levels of preparedness, some much higher. For folks on the longer end of the spectrum of preparedness goals it is a long journey. It is years or most of a lifetime of work. A marathon not a sprint if you will. In any multi year effort there are going to inevitably be times where you loose focus or life's demands creep up. Medical issues can come up and money gets tight. Sometimes we just plain get bored or lose interest. Now it is easy to do nothing about preparedness for a week or a month but when a month turns to 2 or 3 it can be an issue.

So what can we do to minimize the down sides of these inevitable events?

-Hold what you have got! This means keeping up on needed maintenance for small engines (or going all the way and draining fluids, etc), rotating fuel and mid term type food, occasionally cleaning some guns, etc. If we can do this at least we should be able to maintain the levels of preparedness we worked so hard to get to.

-Automate whenever possible. Metals Pimp does a regular monthly plan for silver and gold. Set it up on a CC or transfer from your bank and forget it. [As soon as I get a better picture of what my post divorce money situation will be I will set one of these up.] I think there are similar plans for food storage out there.

-If the reason you are slowing down/ distracted only affects one area (space, time, money, physical stuff, etc) then focus on the other areas. If you are broke you can still do PT and dry fire. If you are short of space you can still train. If you are short on time you can still accumulate supplies. Work on what you can work on. You get the idea.

So those are my general ideas about how to manage the inevitable dry stretches. Now here are a couple thoughts on how to get out of them.

-Shift focus. Start a new preparedness related hobby. If you are a big radio guy get into shooting. If you are a big shooter get into canning. If you are a big time gardener work on pt.

-Do something useful but a touch indulgent. Splurge on a cool new radio then play with it. Build that precision rifle or get licensed and pick up that Enduro bike you have wanted. Dig deep to find the money for that class. You get the idea. [Incidentally I am going to try hard to make ECQC happen in 2016 as a present to me. Also an Appleseed.]

-Reevaluate and set new goals. Look at where you are and where you want to go. Find some goals to be excited about and get back to work.


Thursday, October 8, 2015

RE: Prior Proper Performance Prevents Piss Poor Planning

"A man's got to know his limitations" -Inspector Harry Callaghan AKA Dirty Harry

John Mosby wrote a post worth thinking about.

-John's half sarcastic point that we all need to train to measurable standards or we honestly don't have a clue where we are is 100% valid. We really do have to train to measurable standards, otherwise it is just screwing around. How ever I sort of look at this article from a different angle. 

-As an 'O' in the Army I am not a trigger puller per se. My primary job, at least in a general sense, is planning and supervising operations both in garrison and the field. It would be reasonable, though simplistic, to say as an Officer my job is to assess situations, make plans to achieve a desired end state, help to ensure those things are properly executed then adapt those plans as needed. I guess the point is I plan a lot of stuff.

-During the planning of an operation at work we are encouraged to use METT-TC to understand the situation prior to making a plan. METT-TC means Mission, Enemy, Terrain, Troops, Time, Civil Considerations. Moving past the other pieces since they are not part of this discussion we can focus on the Troops piece.

-What I am getting at is that leaders/ planners need to know their people's equipment, skills, fitness, maintenance status, capabilities, supply situation and current state of health/ rest.

-While it should be obvious why we need to know this stuff let me illustrate. Say the goal is to conduct a raid on an enemy outpost of several men with 1x light armored vehicle with medium machine gun. Am I a Mech Infantry Platoon Leader with 2x M2A3 Bradley Fighting Vehicles, 2x medium machine guns, a gaggle of light machine guns and 30 some odd decently trained fit soldiers? Am I an SF A Team leader with a dozen very well trained very fit guys, probably a couple of medium machine guns, maybe a DM/ sniper rifle or two? Am I a leader of a local guerrilla group with a dozen guys of very questionable fitness levels armed with a mix of civilian military pattern (AK/ AR/etc) and hunting rifles whose standard of marksmanship is hitting an 8" paper plate 8/10 times at a hundred meters?

-Are my guys healthy and well rested or have they been fighting out in the woods for a week or two strait with maybe 3 hours of broken up sleep between guard shifts per 24 hour period? Have they been well fed or have we been on starvation rations? Do we have enough ammo/ batteries/ etc or are we short?

-What I am getting at is that the honest no crap capabilities of your force matter significantly when you go to make and then ultimately try to execute a plan. If your troops can't hit squat past a hundred meters then a 'long range ambush' from 400 meters is just a waste of ammo. If your troops can't get their fat non muscular selves over an 8 foot wall then you better come up with a plan that doesn't involve climbing over the wall. If your only potential 'covert operative' is a white guy with a crew cut, USMC tat's and a Southern Drawl you are not going to infiltrate the local La Raza branch.

-Make reasonable plans based on the force you have, not the one you wish you had.


Wednesday, October 7, 2015

American Mercenary Signs Off

Another excellent blogger calls it quits. I get it, life has enough complications without a thankless low/ no pay part time job but I hate it when the good ones go.

Hopefully he isn't a stranger and pops up occasionally in the emails or comments section. Maybe even down the road at some point when life slows down he may appear with the occasional guest post or even come back.

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

RE: DTG Preconceived Notions: "The Bug Out"

First of all thanks to Kenny and Western Rifle Shooters for bringing this excellent post "Preconceived Notions: "The Bug Out" to my attention. Mason Dixon Tactical is a solid site, there are just a finite amount of blogs a person can read with high frequency.

-Unfortunately JC Dodge uses the term 'bug out' differently than pretty much everybody. He uses 'bug to' in the context most of us would use bug out in meaning to go from planned point A to point B. He uses 'bug out' in an open ended way without a planned destination, like I might use 'Batman in the Boondocks'. While seemingly a minor thing the lack of common vocabulary can be significant point of confusion.

-In general it is worth mentioning the primary plan in almost every scenario should be to stay wherever you currently live. With a touch of fairly basic survival planning one can ride out most realistic scenarios in their normal residence. As an aside if you are sure that most realistic survival scenarios would be a serious problem in your normal residence then I would suggest re looking where you live.

-Since we are focusing on the E of bugging out (without a solid planned destination and associated logistics) for the sake of the discussion we are going to largely disregard the options which should be between staying at home and running off to the woods or whatever. So the answers A and C which might be your bug out location or a relatives isolated home then another slightly less desirable plan are largely going to be left out of the conversation. In many ways this is also somewhat realistic because many people do not have that dedicated back up place or a convenient Aunt Milly with a farm in the hinterboonies, let alone two such options. Until a person can save money and build networks to flush those out it might well be strait from P to E.

-Mason Dixon Tactical makes the case that a bug out (without a solid planned destination and associated logistics) should really be around the E of a PACE plan. In non military speak it is the plan you use when all your other, better supported, plans fall apart for one reason or another. You just can't carry that much stuff and being a refugee is a bad plan for survival. Also believe it or not in most of the US there are not that many truly empty places. Off the top of my head. A few deserts in the South West. Some empty parts of the inland west. Parts of the Appalachians and Ozarks and some woods way up North in Maine and maybe Michigan. You might well hike or drive up to that lake, valley, deer camp or camp site and find several groups of people already in the area!

-In general for a bug out to nowhere plan I would try to bring as much stuff as possible then if needed (or lost/ stolen) shrink down from there. Say I started a trip with a vehicle and a trailer. Of course I would want to keep those but maybe to keep going I had to travel through a place I couldn't take the trailer and there was not time to go around, unload the trailer, traverse the obstacles then reload it, etc. So now I am down to the vehicle and its contents. Hopefully that works. Baring that maybe I have a game cart or something and a ruck.

-This would necessitate packing in a tiered way (see a theme?) We would want bug out bag's in the vehicle as a baseline. Beyond that we would extend to a couple more core weapons, extra ammo, a more comfortable tent, first aid gear, some food, water and fuel in the vehicle. The trailer would be a further extension with a nice sheltered space as well as more comfortable stuff, ammo, food, fuel, etc.

-So this land is not ours or under friendly (family, etc) control. Who exactly owns it? The best case would be various public lands have different rules that will likely not matter if thing are bad enough that you are driving out into the hinterboonies to avoid the chaos of the cities. Private land is well private but I would not feel bad about squatting on a major corporations timber/ ranch/ farming land. In this sort of scenario the major regional timber company is probably not going to be functioning anyway. To empty private land of non major corporate type owners that is an option I dislike. One might wake up in that empty cabin to find it's rather unhappy owner standing over them! I would avoid that option if at all possible.

 -If we have a fairly firm location even if it is not ours (otherwise it would likely be the alternate plan) what can we do to firm up the logistical side of this plan? Could we look at clearing out a site a little bit? Could we stash a few key items that are too heavy to carry on foot like say a real axe and saw, a dutch oven and cast iron frying pan, a couple big tarps, maybe some bulk food? If purchased carefully one could get all the tools and such for maybe $200. $200 will buy a lot of bulk food. Say another $100 in packaging and incidentals and we are at $500. $500 will about buy a new Glock 9mm at normal price or pay for a nice weekend vacation in the nearby big city or at the beach. It is an amount that with some planning most people can come up with. While one would not want to exercise extreme caution in burying guns, explosives etc in this manner stuff you can get at the local hardware store is in my opinion a different matter. It might not be entirely legal (consult your local laws, etc) I do not see any ethical issues with it. Could we get a rental storage locker in town 5 miles away putting out stuff most of the way there instead of 50 miles away from the place in our garage?

-I guess the way we firm up a plan to nowhere is to make it a plan to somewhere! After we figure out where we would be well advised to develop the logistical situation.


Monday, October 5, 2015

Housing A Conceptual Discussion

So we need a place to live. Most of us would like a reasonably decent place with some modern amenities and comforts. If nothing else getting a cute girl to come back to the dirty cave you live in is going to be a hard sell. So we need some sort of place that is not a cave or a hole in the ground. Let us look at some options.

Conventional structure AKA house/ condo/ etc.

-Nice comfortable place to live.
-All modern amenities available.
-People won't think you are insane.

-Cost. First cost to buy it then taxes, upkeep etc.

So at the most basic level we can either buy a house or rent one. Both options have associated pro's and con's. In the long term renting is economic sabotage if not outright suicide. However in the short term it can be a good way to go. For buying you can either pay cash or get a loan. Paying cash has some significant benefits but our social/ cultural expectations for housing are so high these days most folks can't pay cash for a traditional house until pretty late in life, if ever. Furthermore a persons ability to save up cash to buy a place, while paying rent is dodgy at best.

Unconventional Housing.
There are lots of options here so it is difficult to speak with uniformity. However generally.

-More affordable than conventional housing.

-Can offer close to normal housing levels of comfort/ amenities. 


-Most alternative housing such as a manufactured home AKA trailer  aren't built the same as a house and fall apart so as such should be considered a depreciating commodity instead of an appreciating (well so long as we don't consider inflation) one like a normal home.

-While other options such as travel trailers have some appeal and are in a price range where many people can pay cash. This is a good option if you (and your spouse) are willing to deal with the smaller spaces, lack of storage, etc.

- In general alternative housing will have smaller amounts of space and fewer luxuries than a conventional home.

In general I am very interested in the tiny house movement. Some of those places are really small (like 100 square feet) and that does not appeal to me. Still when we look at places smaller than a normal conventional house there is a lot of room between these 100-300 foot tiny houses and the current average 2,600 square foot home.

[Though I suspect the extremely massive mansions of the super rich skew this at least a few hundred square feet. Kind of like one guy with a good job walking into a quiet small town bar can up the patrons average salary by ten grand.]

 I am not so interested in the 'green' side of it but more the debt free/ very low debt side. Building a relatively small place with cash, potentially while living there in a travel trailer; seems like a way people can get into a place and not have the massive debt load of a conventional house with a mortgage to match.

Also the ability to potentially add a bedroom or whatever in a few years after saving up some more money is a good option. If building a tiny (or more realistically small in my case) house I would keep the idea of expansion in the plan even if I never wanted it the option would be nice.

I suppose there is a sort of push pull of the type of place we want, they money we make and how we want to live (debt, toys, saving, etc all) that might dictate a smaller than currently normal house.

How much space do we really need? At one point in the Army I lived in a room that was probably 5x9. I was thrilled because even though it was tiny I did not have a roommate. It was tight to the point my shoulders hit the wall and bed if I tried to do push ups in there. Granted I did not cook or do bathroom stuff in there but it was enough space for just living. Say a bedroom, a modest 'great room' and a bathroom. Throw in a spare bedroom for good measure.

A relative of mine has a cabin that is about 20x40. The place is 2 bedroom, 1 bath with a nice little living room and a wood stove. He is probably a solidified bachelor at this point so it is plenty of space. I could definitely live in a place like that. We agreed the relatives place would benefit greatly from a loft. It could be bedroom #3 or another living space.

I would need a place to store stuff. Being a survivalist that is not a small thing. Even after I go through to reorganize and sell off some unneeded stuff I still have a lot of gear, food, gun stuff, etc. I would need a basement or a large shed/ small pole barn for that. Another option depending on the specifics of where I built and some other things is maybe a couple big caches at a bug out location.

One of the few up sides of my near term future is the ability to make my own decisions. One of the decisions I am looking hard at making is some sort of alternative housing. A little place owned free and clear would be very cool. Time will tell.

As always the comments section is open.

Saturday, October 3, 2015

Vehicle Discussion Update

Thanks to those who replied to yesterdays post 'vehicle discussion'. You all brought up some excellent points.

-I think two vehicles is the way to go. Something pretty fuel efficient to putter around in most of the time and a bigger vehicle that can tow stuff if needed.

-For the commuter vehicle I plan to hold onto the vehicle I have. The point that an occasional $500 fix is a lot cheaper than a new vehicle with a corresponding loan is very valid. It gets decent, if not amazing, gas mileage and I do not plan on having much of a commute in the near future. Realistically it should have a couple of pretty reliable years of service left.

 -I do not think I want to get a vehicle loan. Honestly if at all possible I plan to be entirely debt free in the future.

-For a hauler/ BOV I agree with Peter's advice to go with a 3/4 ton. Given my need to have a real back seat for the kids it is an SUV or a crew cab truck.
- From my anecdotal research the best values seem to be 80's Suburbans. A truck certainly has some benefits but crew cab vehicles were pretty rare in that period so there are a lot less out there.

-Best of all two vehicles have a lot of benefits. The potential to have a vehicle down for bit is a lot more tolerable if I can start another one and drive to work in the morning. Also I can realistically buy vehicle #2 (an older full sized truck or SUV) with cash. Planning on buying a vehicle every other couple years or so is realistic especially if I am talking ones in the several thousand to 10k price range.

So that is where I think I am going to go. Your input is always welcome.

Note to Grasshoppa

Thanks for the kind words. My email is being a jerk so I just replied here. If I am ever in that area we should try to get together. -R

Friday, October 2, 2015

Vehicle Discussion

Tpals brought it up and well I can not think of another thing to write so here we go. Vehicles.

The vehicle I have and am going to get in the split is a Korean soccer mom SUV. It is a fine enough vehicle for what it is. However the soccer mom SUV has a shade under 140k on the odometer. Korean vehicles aren't the junk they used to be (nor are they the amazing value they were after they fixed the issues but before people realized it) but 140k is getting close to the danger zone. It is showing its age these days.

The goal would be to sell it before it starts to have the kind of issues that cost me money or really falls off the cliff in terms of value. On one hand I could sell it ASAP but an already paid off vehicle is a darn nice thing. If I could drive the soccer mom SUV for a year to let me save up for a newer vehicle that would be great. However that could backfire and instead of being able to sell it for a few grand I end up with NADA out of it. On the other hand buying a vehicle now is a less than optimal option. I am not really at a good place for big purchases.

For the next vehicle I want more towing capacity. Like enough to move a decent sized travel trailer if I choose to go that way for housing down the road. That means a V8. 4wd is a must. Also darn it I have wanted a real no BS truck or awesome SUV for a couple decades and darn it I am getting one for my next vehicle.
If/ when I decide to buy a new vehicle I have a decision to make. Part of me wants to buy an old school, EMP resistant, vehicle like an 80's Blazer or Suburban. The up side is I could buy one comfortably with cash and they are awesome. Anything with a Chevy 350 and associated drive train is about as common as it gets in the US. The downside is those things are about 30 years old, often have some miles on them and there is a real potential to have it $500 the crap out of me.

 On the other end I could get a newish (say 07 or better) SUV or quad cab truck like an F150. The up side is everything except cost. Realistically for something with sane mileage (say under 60k) I am looking at about 20k. This means either hitting my cash reserves pretty hard or taking a loan, neither of which exactly appeal to me.

Then again if I have a long commute for the cost of a newer truck I could have a sweet old school SUV as well as potential, at some point, a little daily driver car to putter around in. Have a sweet older vehicle for that role and if I have a long drive just buy a little car. If cost was spread out by awhile I could probably wrangle paying for both in cash. Best of all that is just if I work far from home. I could realistically drive an 85 Suburban 5 miles to work and 5 back for a long time without any real issues. 

Your input is appreciated.

Thursday, October 1, 2015

RE: Economy Watch with Bayou Rennaisance Man AKA What To Do With Money Today?

In Economics Watch our friend Peter talked about some applicable news and his current actions. In many ways it is a lot like my post a month or so back. In order of Peters comments:

-The housing market. Well this depends a lot on how you look at it. As an investment I would say there is considerable risk. As a way to meet your basic needs for housing well that is another discussion. If I was able to pay outright for a small cabin or cottage on a little bit of land that would be high on my list of things to do. I would rather have a cabin on a couple acres than live in a rental place and have 50 or 100k in the bank.

-Peter put his retirement funds into cash. I think the need for this extreme principle protection (At least as cash, now of course big mac's might cost $100 but there is risk in everything) may make sense if you are closer to the age where you will be using those funds. If you are younger I am less sure that trying to time the market then catch the knife is a sound move vs just riding the wave. You will have to make your own decisions.

-Precious metals and cash on hand are both pretty common sense measures.

-Storage of precious metals at an outside non bank vault certainly has potential. I would have to look into it some more.

Also of course as River Rider mentioned in my previous post buying those big ticket items you have been putting off, replacing tires on the family hauler before they are totally worn out, etc are good ideas.


Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Heavy Unfortunate News: Separation

Wifey and I are separated and moving towards divorce. I am down here and she is at home with the kids and dogs. Of course nothing is over till its over but it sure looks unlikely the current course will change. I didn't see it coming though I should have. The unfortunate truth is that we have probably been throwing good money after bad for awhile now. I wish her the best going forward. Hopefully we can settle things as painlessly and quickly as possible.

So that is what's going on with me.

So what am I going to do moving forward. I am going to keep writing (need this little invisible community more than ever) while I try to figure things out. Heck I've started writing fiction again. No promises on when anything might come out but it is still progress.

How am I doing? Emotionally I am all over the place. Mostly moving between a sort of one foot in front of the other OK and sadness. On a positive note I am at least somewhat trending in a good direction and getting used to things. Figuring out what my new normal looks like. Working hard to forge stronger connections with friends and fill my time with positive, or at least neutral things. Have some self improvement to do also.

I am scheduled to leave here in the winter and go to a new duty station. Going to go home to see the kids as much as I can. Also I am looking hard at a new plan where I end there for good (and could be a meaningful part of their lives) a lot sooner than planned.

I don't write this to solicit advice or pity and for goodness sake I do not want to talk about my feelings. My intent is to let you know what is going on with me and get it off my chest. Please bear with me, the usual regular quality posting will continue in due course. In fact from a preparedness angle some pretty interesting things are probably going to happen.

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Various Things

Part of me wants to get in a fight on a crowded dance floor with techno music going and kick butt while somehow staying generally in time with the music.

Tam brings up the excellent point that you can't lose a fight you do not get in. Discretion is the better part of valor folks.

Weapons Man's original quote:
These odds of survival are improved by training to hone your skills and survive an armed encounter, but they’re improved more by using your superior judgment so as not to have to make a vulgar display of your superior skills. Too few people do the former, and far too few people do the latter. (A lot of cops who are involved in shootings are just unlucky. But there are others, where none of their cop friends are surprised they were in a shooting. Why do you think that is?)
Most of us are not cops, and not soldiers (any more), and therefore, do need to saddle up and go into places where you’re likely to be engaged by gunfire. So here’s our version of some guidelines for fight avoidance:
  1. If you must go where the sharks feed — you may have reasons; we had a friend whose elderly mother would not leave her house in South Central LA until the Rodney King riots burned it down and settled the question for her — don’t look like bait. Don’t act timid, walk boldly with your head up, like you belong there — and are the baddest mother in the valley. Also, don’t flash stuff that is irresistibly attractive to the sort of people who have been listening to TV and therefore think they’re entitled to take it from you.
  2. When you have to go into the badlands, take a lesson from the cops and don’t walk alone. If you can’t help looking like prey (maybe you’re small, or elderly person), bring a buddy who looks intimidating if you can.
  3. Don’t get distracted. This is the wrong time to be facebooking, texting or reading on your jeezly phone. In fact, it’s the wrong time to be taking calls. You need to be 100% in the analog world. We don’t know what the percentage of mugging victims in NYFC and San Francisco is, who had their ear buds in, but we’d take a guess it’s fairly high.
  4. Be conscious of concealment. Don’t give anyone the chance to ambush you.
  5. Manage the Clock. Most criminals stay up late and sleep late, too. If you have unavoidable business in their precincts, do it at seven o’clock in the morning when they’re down for the count, not at midnight when they’re just warming up.
  6. Be conscious of the fact that you may have to be ready, and always be ready to deliver a violent counterstrike.
  7. Work on avoidance, but once avoidance fails you should immediately execute a drilled, conscious plan. Strike hard and decisively. (George Z. got this bit exactly right, and every day’s life he has now, he only has because he did).
  8. If you err, and are attacked, act. Save regrets and recriminations for later.
FerFal shows the contents of various refugees bags. Interesting stuff. If they could have had (or retained) compact handguns, secure rugged USB storage devices and rolls of Krugerrand's I bet those would have made the cut for their small bags.

The Taliban have taken Kunduz. I knew they would do well when we left but they are exceeding my expectations. I figured the government would at least hold on for the most part until we stopped giving them enough money to fund their Army and buy off warlords. In light of this the already low odds the 'legitimate GIROA' could somehow keep violence below the (admittedly pretty high) accepted cultural boiling point and not have the kettle spill over while they eventually shrink the massive Army and Police forces to levels they can actually afford to fund seem pretty low.

Anyway that is what seemed worth mentioning today. Tomorrow I'll get you a real post.

Sunday, September 27, 2015

Skill, Size and Strength in Fighting

My post yesterday on Joe Rogan vs the Aikido guy got a comment from our friend Pineslayer. I felt the need to reply in this venue and also didn't have a post idea for today.

Anonymous" Pineslayer said..
I'm with Joe on this one. Real world vs. Dojo. Full disclosure here Rogan hosted Fear Factor and UFC color guy. God Bless Joe Rogan.

Seriously, I trained with a few different styles, technique only goes so far. Focused rage and desire trumps belts on the street. In the ring with rules, it is a different game, but still brute force and strength can't be discounted."

I agree with the first half of what Pineslayer said and almost entirely disagree with the second half. Point by point.

Pineslayer says 'technique only goes so far'.
-Techniques can be very valid and useful or complete crap. Many martial arts that are popular these days are so far from their martial roots that either they are no longer relevant ideas, looking at you Kendo, or they have evolved into an art or sport, looking at you Tai Kwon Do.
-Practical arts and the skill derived from them is very useful, less useful ones, less so. 
-The combination of skill, mindset and physical size/ strength/ conditioning that makes a fighter is opaque. What separates a crappy fighter from a decent fighter or a decent fighter from a great one can be subtle but it is still absolutely relevant.

Generally speaking I find fights are decided by violence of action/ will to win, skill and size/ strength. Pretty much in that order. As to violence of action/ will to win. The amount of people I could beat up expands greatly if I bring an ax handle. It takes willingness to go all the way but if you have it a lot can be done; my AARP aged mother could take Mike Tyson if she walks up and dumps a .357 mag into his chest. Next comes skill.

Presuming equal or roughly equal violence of action/ will to win skill is what determines the outcome of fights. Sure anybody could slip on a banana peel and get beaten up by a chump but the more capable fighter will win the vast majority of the time. People, particularly men, need to understand fighting is a learned skill. I can look up how to fix something on youtube but that does not mean I am a legitimate trained mechanic, let alone a master mechanic. Ego aside thinking Joe Everyday could cook eggs like a trained professional chef would be stupid. Thinking Joe Chef is going to do them like Alton Brown or Nigela Lawson (wow she is a babe) would be silly. Next comes size/ strength.

Size and strength are less important than skill. To this I have to caveat that any time one fighter has a massive size/ strength advantage they have a chance, no matter the other fighters skill level. Mongo a 350 pound power lifter might land a blow on a legitimate professional fighter than ends things, or get his hands on the guy and slam his head into a wall. Note I say size/ strength because they generally track together. However while 350 pound Mongo has an advantage over most other fighters sheerly due to size he is not going to beat a guy like Randy Coulter or Bass Rutten because they have enough skill to overcome his size advantage

So those are my thoughts on that. What do you think?.

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

From Around The Web

Tam is about halfway through her now standard 2k with no lube or cleaning test with her sweet 1911. So far there are two failures (one of which might well be attributed to questionable random ammo she had) which is pretty solid. Without doing math in public that is well under .01%. Also it looks good.

This has me really wanting to do some sort of 1911 project. I wanted a cool pistol to go with my FAL and have been thinking about different ideas. A nice 1911 would fit the bill. I kind of want to build a cool old school (well to me anyway) 80's era Colt 1911 with Pachmyr rubber grips and Novak low profile sights. Or I could go with the Longmire and get a plane jane one with Elk grips.

[Don't have a clue how I would fund it. Also it would not be the best way to spend that money which if I shopped hard could get a serviceable but budget M4 pattern AR-15 for a truck gun and another Glock for a rainy day but I digress. Thinking about what we want to buy/ build is half the fun anyway and 2-3 times a year money has a way of appearing so who knows. On a serious note I will get a case each of 5.56, 7.62 ball AND a truck gun M4, though maybe not in that exact order, before thinking about it.]

Oleg Volk talks about Selecting Handgun Pairs for Carry and Home Defense. My thoughts on the subject:
-Oleg makes a good point about similar methods of operation, especially for an inexperienced shooter. Commonality is good as one system is easier to become proficient with.
-The two guns need to be different enough in size to really be distinguishable. A full sized handgun and a gun on the top end of the compact range (I'm talking to you G19 and Commander Sized 1911's) do not really offer much in terms of different options.
-Magazine and caliber commonality is good if you can get it. 
- Modern upwards compatible handgun systems (Glock, M&P, XD, etc) that offer sub compact if not quite pocket sized models as well as larger compact to service sized handguns offer really good possibilities in this area. A G26 to carry and a G17 at home with a light on it by your bed is a heck of a set up.
-If wheel guns are your thing the classic combo of a little j frame .38 and a big ole .357 mag is a great option.
-I know a couple guys who have a full sized .45 for a house/ woods/ range gun and a little .380 pocket rocket to carry. This is a pretty decent set up; the only criticism I could bring of it is that they probably carry the .380 when they should have a real gun.
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