Showing posts with label 9mm. Show all posts
Showing posts with label 9mm. Show all posts

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Glock 19 for the Win!

Weapons Man wrote a seminal article on why SOF forces have almost universally transitioned to the Glock 19 (with one exception who may still be shooting .40S&W) as their go to war hand gun. I agree with everything he says. However I do have some potentially redundant thoughts of my own.
The Glock 19 is obviously a Glock. For the uninitiated it is on their ‘compact’ frame and chambered in 9mm. We will briefly talk about each of those characteristics.
Glock pistols:
-Reliable. They are pretty much the gold standard in reliability for handguns. They perform well under adverse conditions with minimal maintenance. You might argue a SWAT Blaster 900 is equally reliable but finding one that is more reliable is going to be difficult at this time.
-Repairable. They can be repaired by a non expert with a single punch and true drop in parts.
-Long life. These guns can put a whole lot of rounds down range without serious damage. (particularly in 9mm, .40S&W Glocks actually have some issues here.)
-Price. They are very affordable pistols.
-Ease of use. Easy guns to learn and shoot well.
-Commonality. If people make a holster they make it for Glocks, ditto sights, etc all. If a store sells gun stuff they have Glock stuff.
Compact size:
-About the largest size handgun a normal sized person can conceal with minimal hassle. I didn’t say no hassle. Personally I think people who believe they are concealing a Glock 19 under a normal sized t shirt are probably unaware or being dishonest with their selves. Maybe they can from one angle standing still but moving and doing normal life tasks not so much. To actually hide the gun a pair of pants that will allow the gun to be carried IWB and a larger shirt are going to be needed.
-Best all-around option. If you want to balance shooting (either recreationally or for defense) and concealed carry this is probably the sweet spot for most people. So if a person was going to have one handgun with them to do a couple different things this size is the way to go.
-It works. With modern defensive ammunition the difference between any of the common defensive calibers (9mm, .40S&W, .45acp) is mental masturbation. Sorry folks, I really don’t care what Jeff Cooper said 30 or 40 years ago, it is true.
-More bullets. It will probably give you 2 more bullets than .40S&W and 3+ more than .45acp in the same sized gun. More bullets is better.
-More controllability. Better for smaller and weaker people. Also this means faster follow up shots for everyone.
-Commonality. If a place sells bullets they will have 9mm. Compared to the other 2 options it’s at least slightly more common. This is more important for international types as .40S&W and .45acp are not going to be common elsewhere.
Note: The primary difference between the Glock and the various competitors (S&W, Ruger, etc) in favor of Glock is going to be reliability and commonality. You might not be able to get mags/ parts/ accessories for a Ruger SR9 or those new FN pistols but the gun shop will have Glock mags.

Monday, April 11, 2016

Range Report: Pistol Day At Work

 I was involved in running a range and got to do some training of my own.

Gun: M9/ Beretta 92

Target: Whatever the man sized Army pistol target is.

Range: 25 meters

Rounds fired: 75ish


Rapid (but still getting front sight, etc) fire- 2/3rds in the equivalent of the 8 ring, 1/3rd spread around the body minus 2 flyers.

Failure drill (2 chest 1 head)- The chest shots were faster than the rapid fire but the spread didn't push past the 7 ring. Head shots were rough. Think I got 2 out of 6 or 7.

Guess there were 2 lessons there. First if I have to take the dreaded hostage rescue shot at 25 meters (or past 15 really) with a Beretta 9mm I in deep crap.... but I already knew that. Second if I have to do a failure drill at that range I am going strait to hips.

Also shooting is fun.

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Navy Seals Adopt Glock 19!

Hey All, Another nail in the handgun mental masturbation argument.

The Navy Seals Adopt the Glock 19

Between them and the FBI 9mm Justification can we finally let the silliness rest? I am not saying everyone should sell their beloved 1911 .45 then run out and buy a Glock 19, rock whatever you want I don't care. What I am saying is that at a minimum objective arguments against both the Glock platform (and it's M&P cousin) as well as the 9mm cartridge for use against 2 legged predators are basically invalid from the get go.

The comments section might be fun here.

Friday, July 10, 2015

US Army Looking at JHP Pistol Ammo

Our Army is looking hard at JHP ammo in the new handgun trials.

As to the ammo it is long overdue. The particular pieces of the Geneva Convention on ammunition:

"The Contracting Parties agree to abstain from the use of bullets which expand or flatten easily in the human body, such as bullets with a hard envelope which does not entirely cover the core, or is pierced with incisions."

To employ arms, projectiles, or material{sic} calculated to cause unnecessary suffering;"

 This whole thing is really dumb. Bullets are dangerous. Bullets are intentionally designed to kill things. The whole point of war at a tactical level is to seize key terrain and kill the other side in support of your sides goals.

One could argue that JHP ammo is safer as it expands and tends to stay in the person who was intentionally shot instead of passing through them and moving dangerously downrange. One could also argue that it is actually FMJ ammo that causes unnecessary suffering. Plug a guy with a couple rounds of 9mm JHP to the central part of the torso and he will be dead in short order. Plug a guy in the same place with FMJ and he might suffer for hours or even days.

Also since we have never fought anybody who plays by the Marquess of Queensberry rules for war why the hell should we play by them? An American soldier fighting in the Central Command AOR who is captured can expect to be beaten, repeatedly raped then have their head cut off on video tape. Why should we go out of our way to play according to some rules?

Put it this way, if I am rolling with a buddy or even fighting a guy in an organized competition I will follow the rules; however if I am (not employing a weapon because I am unarmed which means it is a felony to carry there, I am getting drunk or swimming) attacked by some goblin I will use all available options to wreck that guy. Particularly I favor striking at the neck and slamming heads into hard stuff. The point is that he is not following the rules so I will not either.

Anyway to be honest I believe the only reason we are having this handgun competition (as well as the last 4 rifle competitions and 1-2 machine gun competitiions) is to justify the existence and pay checks for a whole bunch of people at Rock Island and Ft Benning. Being realistic our Army is between wars and in a severely tight financial crisis. We do not have the needs or funding to replace all of our handguns.

We do however need to upgrade our ammo. Honestly any sort of JHP round would be a massive game changer over FMJ 9mm ammo. I am carrying 115gr Federal Classic Personal Defense JHP these days because well I have it and the load is solidly adequate. (I am looking hard at moving to the 147 gr Speer Gold Dot.) I think something in the 147ish grain range, in line with the new FBI load such as the Speer Gold Dot or 147gr Federal Hi Shok would be a darn good option.

Anyway Ryan's thoughts are 1) The handgun competition is silly because we are almost surely not going to buy any of them and 2) We should move to JHP pistol ammo. 

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

From Around The Web

FBI switches to 9mm. They throw out all sorts of facts and data. Honestly if modern defensive ammunition like the 9mm Remington Golden Saber, is available 9mm, 40 S&W and .45acp offer terminal ballistics that are close to identical. Also 9mm holds more rounds and it's milder recoil means most people get faster second shots on target. Plus it is by far the most common semi auto pistol round in the US and the cheapest common centerfire round to practice with. Those last two are a big deal if .gov/.mil isn't footing the bill for your practice.

Bayou Renaissance Man makes a case for keeping larger caliber semi auto pistols.  Personally I say carry whatever you want. I really don't care. That being said own your choice and don't try to justify it with pseudo facts that, while arguablly relevant 40 years ago, make about as much factual sense today as your Grandpa who says Japanese cars are junk and to buy a good old reliable Chevy.

That being said my next Glock is almost surely going to be a .40S&W. The reason is that for the particular situation I plan to use that pistol in it is going to be surrounded by guys with .40's, mostly Glocks as well as a smattering of other manufacturers. So a .40S&W Glock makes sense for commonality. Since it is not a gun I will shoot a whole lot the Glock .40's occasional tendency to blow up is unlikely to be an issue.

Weapons Man makes an excellent case to why the M14's greatness is only in the mind of it's owners. The M14, Not Much For Fighting ( A Case Against The M14 Legend ). While I am ambivalent about the 'mighty .308 BATTLE RIFLE' argument the case for the M14 or it's subsequent spawn the M1A is particularly lacking.

Since I have poked, albeit with very well researched factually based articles, the almighty icons of the .40+ caliber pistol and the mighty M1A in 7.62/.308 about two thirds of the people reading this are probably mad. Everyone knows gun writers who had very meaningful experiences in the 40's, 50's and 60's liked the .45 and 7.62/.308. They wrote books and articles and were famous so that means their words were gold. Their names being famous and their words being well published means their experiences are really, really current and relevant right? There is clearly no way that  decades of massive technological innovations could possibly make the thoughts of Cooper, Keith and Jordan any less relevant than they were when first written. After all you are still driving a 1949 Chevy, sending letters and playing records right? The comments section should be fun.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Single Stack Compact 9mm Round Up

I do not mean this to be comprehensive. Instead it is going to be a brief and totally subjective view on some of the single stack 9mm's out there. For background I have been anecdotally in that market for awhile and recently put away the cash to do it so the looking has gotten serious.

-Beretta Nano. Very small but odd looking. Does not feel good in my hand.

-Sig 938. Has a lot to offer but a $700+ subcompact 9mm carry piece is a hard sell for me in a land full of very good $300-450 options.

-S&W Shield. Definitely the big boy on the block. Aside from initial minor issues which exist in all guns it's reputation is rock solid including some serious shooters. Feels good in my hand. Cost is pretty fair at around 4 bills. The downside is that for me it is a little big. Honestly I think it handles more like a very thin compact single stack 9mm than a subcompact. Probably the perfect IWB solution for a lot of people but I am not sure that I am one of them.

-Kahr CW9. Basically the same dimensions as the Shield. Ever so slightly thinner (than the Shield) due to a flat grip. Basically it is a single stack rendition of a Gen 1 Glock 19 (actually it is 4.5 in tall while the G19 is 4.9 but I digress).

-Kahr CM9. Basically a single stack G26.

As of right now I am mulling hard on a Kahr CM9. The grip is definitely a 2  finger job but you can get extensions if that is desired. Personally, without getting into specifics, I think for small guns it is better to have a shorter frame and add a longer mag/ mag extension when you want. A lot more versatile to slap in a +1 mag which has room for the pinky when you need to than to try and make a bigger gun fit a smaller role

Or honestly I am seriously just considering buying a little .380 either a Kahr or an S&W Bodyguard (w/o laser).

Am open to your thoughts and experiences on the subject. Comments that do not apply to the post such as 'Carry a 1911/ Glock 17 every day' or 'buy a J frame' will be ignored. What do you think?

Monday, August 25, 2014

What Did You Do To Prepare This Week?

We picked up a large Coleman family sized car camping type tent

I am actively shopping for a single stack 9mm pistol

Over the last week or two I have been refocusing on physical fitness and
diet. Let a few pounds slip on and now it is time to eat less and move more
to lose them.

What did you do to prepare this week?

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Family Tent, Single Stack 9mm's and a Saturday Night ER Trip

Awhile back our larger tent finally kicked the bucket. Since, IIRC, my Dad bought it for me as a Freshmen in highschool it stopped owing us anything years ago but it still left a vacuum. Also honestly we needed a bigger tent. The one I had technically slept three which actually means it sleeps two unless 2 of the 3 are small children or all three are very intimately close.

Walker has been asking about it and since the budget was looking OK this month we decided to go get a tent. So we went to Academy in the nearest decent sized town and walked down to the tent aisle. Ended up with a big ole Coleman. Honestly it is a bit bigger than we want/ need but there is sort of a size gap in options and we'd rather be on the big end. It is like 12x7. Definitely a car or other mode of conveyance type tent.

We set it up in the living room so kiddo and I can sleep in it. Honestly sleeping outside when the low is 80 or so sucks so we are doing it inside.

On the door of the tent there is about an 8 inch lip at the bottom. Walker tripped on it and slammed his face into the floor biting his lip pretty bad in the process. Of course there was some blood and lots of crying. His sister joined in with some sympathy crying for good measure.

We got him cleaned up and the cut was pretty good, solidly in the 'maybe it needs stitches' range. So we hopped in the family hauler and went off to the ER. Just what everyone wants to do at 6pm on a Saturday. The injury was more in the 'urgent care' range but with our medical coverage it is ER, a few rare same day appointments (M-F of course) or waiting several days to a month for an appointment. Consequently in addition to relatively minor issues like Walkers there are always lots of moms with kids who have the snivels.

I dropped Wifey and Walker off then went to do a couple things with Princess.

Walker got checked out and the verdict was since the deep cut is inside his mouth (vs the lip) they would not do stitches due to infection concerns (and I think the mouth cures pretty well plus a scar there is not an issue).  The advice was to feed him lots of popsicles and keep an eye on it.

We had a quick drive thru dinner on the way back. After getting home we let him watch a tv show then it was bed time. Read stories in the tent and he passed out shortly after.

I have been doing some more thinking and research on Single Stack 9mm's. I have been looking at the S&W Shield for awhile but recently came to a revelation. I think the Shield is a tiny bit too big to really be a meaningful difference from other guns on the inventory.

The Shield is 4.5in tall which for reference is roughly in the middle between a Glock 26 (4.1in) and a Glock 19 (4.99in). Honestly (and interestingly my initial observation from the first time I handled it) the Shield is sort of closer to a single stack COMPACT pistol in terms of height and grip length than a true subcompact.

As I have learned with small guns you can always get a bit more grip (and usually an extra round) with a mag extension but if you want a gun to be smaller, to say fit in a pocket, you cannot remove a half inch off the grip of a larger handgun.
Now I want to get my hands on a couple other guns to see if they might better suit my needs.

Going to read some junk on the net, watch a bit more TV then go to sleep in a tent that's in my living room.

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Letter Re: Checking Your Handguns for Feeding Problems: Round Nose Versus Hollow Points

This chain Checking Your Handguns for Feeding Problems: Round Nose Versus Hollow Points, re, re has gone on long enough and got off track enough that I have to weigh in. In no way am I disparaging Jim Rawles or his excellent blog. Jim has been a friend to me and this blog. I read his excellent blog daily. When you accept guest posts inevitably some will be a bit off track. 

To briefly recap a guy has a pair of Taurus pistols (a .45 Millemium Pro and a  TCP .380)and prudently, though a bit late, decides to actually try shooting his chosen defensive ammo out of them. Go figure both of them failed to feed multiple times within a few rounds.

The first reply is from one guy who goes into the history of care and feeding on 1911's (don't worry we will get there in a minute) and rambled about how hollow point ammunition is just a marketing gimmick. The second reply is from some guy who suggests using a dremel to polish the feed ramp of your pistol to improve feeding.

Onto my thoughts in no particular order:

1) Go figure a couple of new unproven designs by a notoriously mediocre company with spotty quality control had issues. Taurus revolvers are generally servicable but newly designed auto's probably aren't a good idea. (Though I have heard good things about their 1911's) Seriously this is like Lou Gehrig dying of Lou Gehrig's disease, how the hell did he not see it coming.

Weapons you are going to use to defend yourself and family (vs hunting, plinking, fun, etc) absolutely need to be built to a professional standard. They need to be able to be shot a lot and feed anything. Glock, Sig, HK, Smith and Wesson (M&P and revolvers), Springfield (specifically the XD), Beretta and Ruger all build guns to a professional standard. It would be an uphill battle to convince me there is a Taurus (specifically their automatics) or a Kel Tech that meets such a standard.

I'm not saying you have to spend a ton of money on a gun. We all have competing priorities and budgets. If you aren't willing to save another C note for a Glock/ M&P get a basic gun like a good used revolver instead of some POS automatic.

2) To further elaborate a fighting pistol needs to feed all ammunition put into it. We can break feeding issues down by broad gun type. In order older guns, pieces of junk and 1911's.

2A) Older guns. The older military surplus and pattern guns (WWII through the 1970's give or take) were designed to shoot ball ammo either FMJ or strait up lead round nose. I do not fault these guns for that. It was the ammunition used at the time so it just makes sense. With these guns IMO you have two valid options. The first is to just shoot ball ammo. A good friend of this blog (though lately absent) who is big into surplus guns and has quite an enviable collection does this. He often swaps through various high power's of different makes and it would be cost prohibitive and impractical to test and keep track of which gun feeds what ammo. So he just shoots ball in them. I'm not in love with this option but for some folks it makes sense.

The other option is to get your gun worked over by a qualified gunsmith who specializes in your particular type of gun. Send your high power to a high power guy, your older surplus 1911 to a 1911 guy, etc. This can be cost prohibitive. Unless there is some compelling reason you want to carry that particular gun it might be better to buy a modern pistol of professional grade.

2B) Pieces of Junk. Yes, I am saying that currently produced pistols which do not reliably feed modern defensive ammunition are pieces of junk. Do not buy a piece of junk for defensive purposes. Expecting a piece of junk to work when you need it is just not realistic. You wouldn't get upset when $10 Soldiers Choice scotch doesn't taste like Ballantine's let alone Glenlivet. Why should guns be any different? I am on the record as being in favor of quality used guns instead of new lower quality guns.

2C) 1911's. We addressed the older milsurp type 1911's already, as to the rest. At the risk of offending somebody here is my observation on 1911's. Two types of 1911's actually work reliably. The first are basic Mil Spec type guns from quality manufacturers specifically Springfield and Colt. These guns will shoot all day long with the accuracy you would expect from a service weapon (good but not amazing). The second are really high end custom guns like Ed Brown and Wilson Combat or the high end Colt's. These guns work well but they cost as much as a decent used car. Probably outside most peoples budget for a carry gun. If you can afford it without shorting yourself elsewhere then rock on.

The problems with 1911's come, in my not so humble opinion, from fly by night custom 'Bob's Mom's basement' makers and lower end "target guns". Bob sucks as an armorer and certainly is not a craftsmen. He slaps together a bunch of different brand parts without a clue what he is doing. There are issues with fitting and stacking tolerances. As to the lower end "target guns". Modern manufacturing technology makes it easy to crank down tolerances which makes guns more accurate but at the expense of reliability. Tight tolerances without serious quality control and craftsmen level fitting make for an unreliable gun. There is a reason AK's and those old WWII 1911's (with ball ammo they are designed for) will run all day long dirty as can be, they have fairly loose tolerances.

3) Good on this guy for actually testing his gun with the defensive ammunition he carries. I think far too few people actually do this and it is important. We could debate round count here. I've seen some folks say you need to shoot 500 rounds of carry ammo to know it is reliable. Honestly I am not doing that unless someone else foots the bill. Typically I shoot about 50 rounds. Since the only centerfire semi automatic pistols we own are Glock's there are never any issues, this is just a check.

4) To support #2 I do not carry super expensive all brass hollow points like the new Cor Bon stuff. I carry 115gr JHP Federal Classic Personal Defense. Awhile back I got a case of the stuff from Lucky Gunner for like .35 cents a round. They have it in stock now but given the state of things prices are considerably higher. They will come back down in due time at which point I will buy another case.

5) I am strongly against any home gunsmith work (not to be confused with basic armorer tasks like swapping out a simple drop in part) on defensive weapons unless you have some training and genuinely know what you are doing. By all means explore and try new things. Just do it with plinking/ fun, hunting or sporting guns. If your home repair/ work on a clay shooting shotgun or deer rifle fails worst case your day at the range or hunt is ruined. In the grand scheme of things neither of those are a huge deal. On the other hand if defensive weapons fail you and your family could end up dead.

This means either buy guns that work reliably which can be repaired using drop in parts (the way to go) or if that does not work or the problem is too serious take your defensive weapons to a legitimate gunsmith who is competent, or even specializes, in that particular weapon.

6. In conclusion- Buy modern professional grade guns for defensive use. If they break take them to a legitimate gunsmith to be fixed.


Friday, April 26, 2013

Glock 26 Thoughts...

This afternoon I went out to the local gun shop to fiddle with a baby Glock. I liked that little thing. Chief Instructor's note that the magazine extension is a must are definitely valid. It's officially on the short list. However since I'm not willing to pay retail, let alone retail plus, for a used pistol it might take a little while to find one. That's fine though.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Baby Glocks?

As it gets hot here packing the G19, other than open carry, isn't getting any easier. Do have a valid option in the J frame but the capacity and reload situation there is not so great. A better option that will be easier to conceal than the G19 would be nice to have on inventory. A Glock 26 came into my head as an option. A bit thick for such a small gun but it holds a lot of bullets for it's size plus the mags/ parts/ ammo are already on inventory.

If you own or have owned a Glock 26 I am interested in your thoughts. Thanks,

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Ammo Shopping and Gratuitous AR/ Burris MTAC Pics

Overall I am fairing well through this gun/ gun stuff/ ammo panic. Sure there is stuff I want but that's life. The biggest mistake single mistake I made was not differentiating between operational ammo and training ammo. We stocked about enough to be comfortable if something happens. However I did not have a separate stash for zeroing optics, test firing new guns, training and such. A half case each of .223 and 9mm plus a couple bricks of .22lr, 250 rounds of .38 and 150 rounds of mixed 12 gauge ammo (mostly bird shot, some buck and a few slugs) or so that is allocated for training and such stuff would be really nice.

It isn't a great time to buy ammo but as Tam noted you have got to keep something coming in even during the bad times. So I've been doing some looking around at the local shops. The last few days have been pretty good for me.

Can't figure out how to get the picture the right way. That is three of the new fangled midget 325 round bricks of Federal .22lr, three 20 round boxes of 55gr XM193 and a 50 round box of 9mm FMJ. One box of .22lr was $22 and the others were $16. The .223 was $12.95 and the 9mm was painful at $22 something. This leaves me happy for .22 training ammo. The .223 will get burned up on my next range trip to really zero in the scope on Project AR. The 9mm is headed to my upcoming class.

To conclude this topic it seems like ammo is slowly becoming available again. Some is at less than ideal prices and some at ok prices. It's just selling as soon as it shows up. There is always that trade off of driving around to different places and waiting in line or paying a bit more. The options are to put in the energy/ time/ gas shopping around, pay steep prices or bitch about the situation. What's right for one person might not be for another. I don't think it is time to go big and stock up on cases of ammo (at these prices) but getting a few boxes of stuff you are seriously short on or replacing some shooting ammo is probably realistic.

It occurred to me that I have not really talked about or shown a pic of the new scope on my rifle.
Here is my rifle these days. Still need to get a DBAL and free float the rail but otherwise this is what it's going to look like, well at least till it's done and gets painted. I am pretty happy with it. Actually that is an understatement as this gun frickin rocks.
A close up of the Burris MTAC and La Rue mount. Shooting it is great. Zeroed it in about 15 rounds, well at least a 90% solution anyway. Specifically it's zeroed at 25 but I need to back out and confirm/ adjust to 50 meters. I think the 50 meter zero is probably the way to go. On the last range trip I sort of got sidetracked, which is another story I'm not ready to write yet, and ran out of time. Will go back and get it finished on the next trip. Since my training ammo budget is a bit better I'll throw some rounds downrange to confirm. One feature I particularly like about this scope is that the illum turns off between power setting. That means unlike an aimpoint where you have to cycle through all the power setting to get to the one you like it can be put to the setting you want with a slight twist.

A pic that shows the La Rue mount more clearly. I like the quick detachment option a lot and consider it a prerequisite for a fighting rifle, especially if you cannot co witness. This way if the optic goes down, which seems unlikely as it's ridiculously stout, I can pull two levers then flip up the BUIS and get back into the fight.

How are things looking in your neighborhood?

Friday, February 22, 2013

Glock Modifications


I saw this video awhile back. Steve Fisher saying the goal of modifying a gun is to improve functionality without messing with durability or reliability I think is a good starting point.

While I do think the Glock is probably the best standard bone stock fighting pistol out there it could be a bit better. I like swapping the normal guide rod/ spring out with a spring that has the same tension (or whatever they call it) but a stainless steel body. The primary reason for this is that a little bit of weight up front helps decrease muzzle rise. Some might also argue they are more durable.

Something new I did today is to swap out the standard trigger connector with a #3.5 trigger connector. Between the reference manual and youtube it wasn't too hard to figure out. Took the gun to try at the range today and it was pretty awesome. It's just a bit lighter and smoother but makes a whole lot of difference. The combination of the steel guide rod and 3.5lbs connector is awesome. It is seriously like a whole different better shooting gun. I shot the same gun about a month back and groups were probably less than half the size this time.

Night sights are pretty much required and are an easy upgrade on most modern service type pistols if the gun does not come with them.

I think the combo of ss guide rod/ spring, 3.5lb connector and night sights is an upgrade all of my Glocks will get. Might just stash a spare set or three (at that mythical time when I have $500 for gun stuff and nothing else to buy) just in case. That way I could set up a Glock acquired however down the road the way I like it. Stole that idea from Matthew Bracken's newest book Castigo Cay.

A pistol mounted light like a Streamlight TLR-1 is a solid option. I have a love hate relationship with them. I love the capability but hate the added bulk. For a dedicated home defense or open carry/ tactical gun a light is an easy decision. For a gun that is going to regularly pull concealed carry duty it is a harder call. I like the idea but the Glock 19 with a light kept getting left at home in favor of the J frame. A more concealment oriented slimmer holster would help but that's still carry under a sweatshirt or something, not AIWB which is my preference for concealed carry. I do not think anybody makes an AIWB rig for a gun with a light and if they did I'm not sure it would be tolerable to carry. Definitely better to carry a Glock without a light than to think I carry a Glock with a light but actually pack the snubby 9/10 times. I think running a concealed carry Glock and a home/ tactical one is probably MY way forward.

That's what I have done to Glocks. Things I can see doing

A modern red dot like a Trijicon RMR or the new Leupold offering seems like a really cool way to go. I'm going to wait for some more R and D to happen and prices to slip down a little bit over a few years before seriously considering taking the plunge. Obviously higher suppressor sights would need to go with this setup.

A threaded barrel to go with a suppressor would be cool at some point.

Stippling has potential to help with grip, etc. I would want to see and handle a gun done by a shop before giving them my gun. Too many yahoos with a dremel and a soldering iron think they are gunsmiths these days to trust just anybody offering the service.

Beyond that I cannot think of anything currently available that I want to put on a fighting handgun.

What have you done to Glocks (or I guess other pistols)?

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Questioning Common Caliber Wisdom

Modern Survival Online did a post recently questioning the conventional wisdom. Though I consider .38 special/.357 mag a common caliber (probably behind 9mm but narrowly ahead of .45 acp and .40 in the real non gunnie world) his point is valid. I have been stewing over it for awhile until today Tam talked about the availability of 5.45 commie which made me want to chime in.

Since common calibers are something I promote it made me really think. First I got to thinking about what makes a caliber common. A few characteristics come to mind:

1-Wide commercial availability. If a small place like a hardware store sells ammo  what they will (normally) have is a pretty common guide. This varies slightly regionally but 12 gauge, 9mm and 30.06 are common while 16 gauge, .357sig and .204 Ruger are not.

2-In the closets/ ammo cans of a large number of average people with whom you could potentially cross level or trade. The stuff your paranoid neighbor, gunnie uncle or whatever are likely to have. Odds he will have a 12 gauge or .308 are higher than that he will have a .300 blackout or 6.8.

3-Modern ammo made in the USA (or wherever you live) is available. If importation was restricted this stuff would become unobtanium even though it's all over the place today. This affects the economy of a lot of old WWII surplus rounds putting them on par with conventional hunting rounds in terms of economics. It is a bigger problem for 5.45 commie and some other rounds that aren't (to my knowledge widely) available in the US made variety at all.  If you choose to go this route stock ammo DEEP. I'm talking closer to pallets than cases because there is a viable possibility you may never be able to find it again.

4-Total rounds available. The sheer amount of a given caliber of ammo in a specific region. This is interestingly different from the first two because it may include military calibers that aren't really used by civilians. Example .50 BMG is not in many gun stores and few people have a gun in it. However there are millions if not billions of rounds stored away at various military installations and a few larger police departments. While admittedly rounds not widely on the market are uncommon by definition in the race to the bottom this gives it an advantage over a round like .408 CheyTac.

I think these criteria are more or less listed in terms of importance. While it isn't exactly quantifiable we could arguably rate these from 1-10 (or whatever) then add them up and divide to get a number. Stuff like .22lr and 12 gauge would probably be 10 but .475 Linebaugh would be more like a 2.

As it relates to the current firearmagedon:

-Since everybody is scared about evil black rifles being messed with this means the ammo associated with them (.223, 7.62x39 and .308) are naturally in high demand. You CAN GET THEM but just at sucky prices. It seems like around here in Southern Arizona bulk pack type .223 (55gr PMC, etc all) is going for 80 cents to a buck a round with more desirable (M855, JHP's etc) ammo going for 85 cents to a buck and change a round. .308 is running at least a buck a round. However you can get it. Since the supply is larger somebody will eventually be induced to sell at the right price.

Conversely there is simply no 6.8 or 10mm auto to be had locally at least without swapping a nubile 18 year old daughter or something else of comparable value. If there are 7 boxes of an uncommon caliber in town it's a lot less likely you can get your hands on 4 of them.

-Any time you try to buy something that is in high demand it's going to cost you no matter how common the item is. Hot pizza is worth more when the pizza joints have closed down. A bottle of Jim Beam is worth more after the liquor stores and bars close. If there are a bunch of hungry folks who want to drink more both are going to cost you dearly. It's simple economics.

-To me the answer to this is to stock enough to ride out the occasional bad 3-6 months. Have some doomsday ammo but put aside a few boxes for range duty to get you through a dry spell.

-Sure like Tam said getting an AR upper or AK in 5.45 commie could give you an option  but you would have to be putting a lot of rounds downrange to break even on the initial investment. Personally since it's a nitche item I wouldn't buy it at the expense of an AK in the common 7.62x39 or another .223 AR.

Anyway those are my .02 cents on that. Thoughts?

Friday, January 18, 2013

EDC Contest Entry #12 H

Hey Folks, I am pleased to bring another entry for our EDC Contest. First we will quickly recap what is going on. The broad strokes are this. I want to share and discuss the stuff we carry around every day AKA EDC. Taking pictures of our stuff and talking about it is my goal.

The prizes will be as follows:
1st Place: 3 Sport Berkey Water Bottles donated by LPC Survival ($69 value)
2nd Place: 1 Blackhawk Holster donated by ($50 value)
3rd Place:  1 Snare-Vival-Trap cough garote cough donated by Camping Survival ($17 value)

Wildcard: This one goes to whoever I want to give it to for whatever reason I feel like. It will be a grab bag donated by yours truly. The exact makeup is TBD depending on what I have lying around  and may include books, gear, medical stuff or even a couple silver dimes. ($30+  value)

Check out the details and my example post here. 

 Onto Entry #12

Hello Ryan:

Here's my wee kit.  Not as elegant as some but it works for me, so far.  I
post as "H" when there seems to be something I can contribute.

Description, clockwise starting with the snubby:

Smith & Wesson 638 Airweight 38 Special +P with DeSantis Clipgrip.  This is
my "get off me" gun tucked into the waistband while lounging around the
house.  The Clipgrip works very well for that purpose.  This gun doesn't
leave the house, it's just there to buy time to get to something bigger.  At
16 ounces it's a handful with hot loads.  I'm not entirely comfortable with
only 5-shots, and so will be transitioning to a different gun in the near
future; see below.

Everything else is on me when I leave the house.

Victorinox "gentleman's" style pocket knife, not sure of the model and
unfortunately, they seem to have quit making this particular model.  Two
knife blades, scissors, nail file, cuticle pusher, small screwdriver and
some kind of gut-hook looking blade I haven't found a use for yet.  Plus the
ubiquitous tweezers and toothpick.  Not quite a multi-tool but darn close.

Pocket planner.  Yes, I know, but I am an old guy and that's what we use.  I
buy the refills and the leather cover has lasted for years.

Browning Hi Power in Milt Sparks Summer Special IWB holster.  A previous
owner spent quite a lot of money on Novak front and rear sights and Cylinder
& Slide hammer, trigger and extended strong side safety, and it was all done
by somebody who did a much better than average job on it.  I put on the thin
Navidex grips and skate-board tape on the front and back straps.  This gun
is a laser and I feel very fortunate to have it.  I use the 15-round Mecgar
magazines and once in a while, not often, will carry a spare mag.  As an old
M1911 guy, I kinda view having 15 +1 up the snout as carrying the spare mag
in the gun already.

This summer, I'll be confident enough in a new SIG 938 compact 9mm to
transition to it for summer carry, at which time I'll also be carrying a
spare mag or two.  At that time, the SIG will also become my house gun
24/7/365, and the little Smith snubby will get retired. 

Kershaw assisted opening "Avalanche" model with serrated blade, designed by
Ken Onion and also unfortunately discontinued.  Once in a while I'll find
another and buy it, because this knife does everything I want it to.  Not
too big, not too small, stays wicked sharp with very little effort.

Smart phone.  It's an Android because that's what my employer's plan makes
us all use.  I hate it, I-phones are much easier to use.  The only intuitive
thing about this one is, my urge to throw it out the window.  I am informed
an upgraded phone is coming next month, and I simply cannot wait to see what
kind of fresh hell that will be.

5:11 ATAC flashlight.  LED with 69-lumens and 3 hour run time on two AAA
batteries.  Anyway they claim 3 hours, but I've been running this for about
9-months now, and only on the second set of batteries.  Momentary contact
switch or click for full on.  None of this twist this for partial power
business, just off or on.  I love this light.  They're about twenty-five
bucks.  Remember the old Surefire incandescent flashlights, that only made
60 lumens and ran about 20-minutes on 123 batteries at two bucks a pop?

The usual wallet, watch, keys and pair of cheater reading glasses omitted
because I was in a hurry and flat-out forgot 'em.

Thanks "H"


Tuesday, January 15, 2013

If Things Go Back To Normal I Will Buy....

After identifying some relative shortages this is about what I will buy over the course of the next year if things go back to normal.

-6 Glock 17 mags

-5 Ruger BXP 25 rd mags
-4 more 33rd factory Glock 9mm mags

-3 cases of ammo (2x223, 1x 9mm)

-2 75rd Eastern European surplus AK drums and

-1 AR-15 stripped lower receiver

What would you buy? Try to be realistic. I would LIKE to get an AR pistol, a PTR-91, an Arsenal AK, 100 various mags and 10 cases of ammo but that would not be realistic for me in the 1 year time frame given. Also you do not have to stick with the count down format I did that just make it a bit more fun.

PS: Sorry for the short post it has been a crazy day and I am done. Going to have a couple beers, watch Vegas and go to bed. Will have something good tomorrow, I promise.

Monday, January 7, 2013

EDC Contest Entry #5 J in Dallas

 Hey Folks, I am pleased to bring the first entry for our EDC Contest. First we will quickly recap what is going on. The broad strokes are this. I want to share and discuss the stuff we carry around every day AKA EDC. Taking pictures of our stuff and talking about it is my goal.

The prizes will be as follows:
1st Place: 3 Sport Berkey Water Bottles donated by LPC Survival ($69 value)
2nd Place: 1 Blackhawk Holster donated by ($50 value)
3rd Place:  1 Snare-Vival-Trap cough garote cough donated by Camping Survival ($17 value)

Wildcard: This one goes to whoever I want to give it to for whatever reason I feel like. It will be a grab bag donated by yours truly. The exact makeup is TBD depending on what I have lying around  and may include books, gear, medical stuff or even a couple silver dimes. ($30+  value)

Check out the details and my example post here. 

 Onto Entry #5
Hey Ryan,
Here is my EDC load out entry.

·         GEN 4 GLOCK 26 9mm
·         SPARE G26 10-ROUND MAG
Ryan here: First of all I would like to thank J for his entry. It takes some guts to put yourself out there in front of others and some motivation to put an entry together. [Remember that before flaming anybody, lets keep the dialog constructive.] I will share my thoughts on this entry down the road.
As always everybody is welcome to leave their thoughts in the comments section.

Also check out previous entries: EDC Contest entry #1 by Jacob and EDC Contest entry #2 by Max and EDC Contest entry #3 Mike in Wisconsin and EDC Contest entry #4 Thomas.

Saturday, December 22, 2012

RE: Random thoughts on current events to close out the week

Alexander Wolfe/ Teotwawki Blog did a great post today Random thoughts on current events to close out the week. As to a potential AWB who knows. Finally calmed down about the whole thing so am not going to let myself get stressed again unless something tangible actually happens.

Things I wish I would have bought (on the off chance an AWB/magazine ban goes into effect)

-Glock 17
-AR Pistol
-PTR-91 or some sort of semi auto .308

Ancillary stuff
A few more Ruger 25 rd mags for the 10/22 (For if/ when I get another 10/22 down the road)
A couple drums for the AK

2 cases of .223

None of this stuff is really critical.  That is good because resources are finite. Project AR upgrade which thankfully was completed prior to this mess wasn't cheap. Seriously my gun find is about as solvent as social security. Had planned to let a few bucks build back up over 3-4 months but then this happened.

I am looking to buy a G 17 over the next couple weeks if the opportunity presents itself. More.223 ammo will get purchased after that if it is available at semi sane prices. An AR pistol and PTR-91 or some sort of AR-10 aren't in the cards financially. Of course I can still use a couple more holsters as well as a nice range bag and some other ancillary stuff but that is all on the shelf indefinitely.

While doing some looking at various gun accessories for this post I saw a pretty cool Pelican Rifle Case. Man one of these would be very nice to have and they aren't really that expensive. Set up for an AR, a shotgun and a pistol this would be great. Perfect for a situation where we need to leave in a hurry but aren't going to be OIF I style rifles hanging out the vehicle. Anyway a fellow can dream.

Hopefully this will all blow over and I can get back to normal operations in a couple months. Anyway I'm bored of writing so am going to wrap this up.

Merry Christmas

Friday, November 16, 2012

Pic Post: Soft Body Armor and Streamlight TLR-1

Earlier this week I posted a Colt ACE II .22 Conversion Kit for sale. A fellow asked about trading then after some back and forth a set of soft body armor and a Streamlight TLR-1 were headed my way. Today they showed up.
Body armor taken apart and Streamlight TLR-1

The light is used but in very good condition.

Body armor put together and TLR-1 Streamlight on my EDC Glock 19.  I am pretty darn happy with this trade. The Streamlight TLR-1 was on my short list so that was cool. Not sure what I am going to do with it right now. Either it will sit around until I am running a dedicated house gun or I will pick up a concealment holster (the Raven one looks like the way to go) and give it a shot on the current EDC/ do everything Glock 19.  I wasn't necessarily in the market for a set of soft body armor but  it was on the long list and is something that's pretty handy to have around. Tomorrow morning or Monday the Colt ACE will go off to it's new owner. Both of us are happy about the deal which is how trades should be. Also I started talking to a reader who is a pretty solid dude so that is an added benefit.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

The Hard Right Over the Easy Wrong- 1911 Sold

1911 gone and a few hundred dollar bills in hand. I have been planning this for awhile. We discussed selling guns in general (specifically the Garand) before and it is worth revisiting. I have mixed feelings about this. Really liked that gun. Just so cool looking and historic. While not a collectible model it is a cool period piece.

I sold it for two reasons. The first is that it let me eliminate a pistol caliber. Now we have pistols in 9mm and .38/.357 magnum (well and .22lr but that is not an issue). This greatly streamlining our logistics. Also more importantly it fits all of our needs. I have 9mm for carry and if need be tactical use and .357 for a woods gun. I would feel pretty happy with a big fast .357 round for anything in the lower 48. Secondly I just didn't use the .45 very much. I enjoy the compact nature and round count of the Glock 19, if I had to have just 1 pistol it would be a G19. For a woods gun I like revolvers. No huge reason for this, maybe just because it helps me justify keeping them around.

A third benefit is that Wifey is now capable of using every handgun we own. (She likes the .38 but admits she shoots a Glock better). This really wasn't an issue as the 1911 wasn't a gun that was key in our defensive plans but it is an added benefit.

[I am not saying my 1911 was a bad gun or anything. The Springfield Mil Spec I had performed like a service pistol should with solid reliability and good combat functional accuracy. I cleaned it and didn't shoot the cheapest junk reloads available but did not baby it or anything. Simply put the gun did what it was supposed to. Just that I didn't need to own it any more for the reasons discussed above. ]

Also the Garand might have a potential buyer. As we have talked this and it is not a done deal I see no need to rehash.

I am kinda going crazy on this whole minimalist thing and tentatively looking to unload 2-3 more guns. Times are getting hard for guns in the safe that do not have a purpose. It might not be entirely accurate to say that I am going all minimalist. We could sell half our guns and still have a solid collection by most peoples standards. The goal is to have the right quality weapons, as well as tools, equipment and other stuff but they are other discussions, to fit our needs. This means over time I will continue selling things that do not fit the bill, even if they are close, and replacing some of them with the right stuff until things are where they should be.

So back to the pertinent question of what do I plan on doing with said cash. Things are still up in the air. I think the imminent purchase of rifle plates is sufficiently funded but will wait to be sure that is good. A Bravo Company upper and a bolt to match are likely candidates with a lower to follow. There is some little stuff that is necessary and on the short list but that is easier to pick up piecemeal. Also an AR-15 .22 conversion kit is on the horizon.

Anyway that is what happened today.

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