Showing posts with label Lucky Gunner. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Lucky Gunner. Show all posts

Thursday, July 2, 2015

Handgun Shooting Evolution and Other Things

Since attending CSAT's Tactical Pistol Operator Course I have been working on training with pistols and solidifying my gear setup. I ordered an X Grip adapter for my Glock 19. Got to fiddling with it today.

I would prefer if it was a bit more squared in back but it seems to be an improvement. Certainly it helps me with indexing onto the gun a bit more naturally from my duty holster.

This should work out well. A Glock 19 (obviously without a light and G17 mag) is the largest handgun I can realistically conceal in anything less than a winter coat. With a 5 minute makeover it can go from a duty pistol with a light to a basic CCW pistol. While a Glock 26 and a 19 or 17 would be better I have not gotten there yet. Anyway for a single pistol I really like the versatility of the G19. 

After spending some time dry firing with the Safariland SLS I found that to disengage it I really just need to touch the hood/ thumb break and give it a light flick forward. Previously I was making a very exaggerated (and time consuming) movement. This should let me cut down draw time.

I definitely need a shot timer.
However at over a hundred bucks I have a hard time pulling the trigger on it. Would rather spend the money on mags, stripped lowers and ammo to get the incoming FAL equipped and prepare for the scheduled election based run on gun stuff.

Thanks to Paw Paw I found out there are free aps that serve the same functions. I recently got a life upgrade to a smart phone (though an LT at work told me they are just called phones now) so this might work out well. I will have to play with it but it beats the dedicated timer I don't have.

Sold my 30-30 and 200 rounds of 30-30 ammo.  Still have a bunch of ammo for it, I think 500 rounds and change. When I stumble onto some more of it I'll try to sell it. Will hold on to at least a couple hundred rounds because it is a common caliber that would be good for bartering or helping out friends/ family/ neighbors who get caught short.

So I eliminated a caliber which is nice. Now my centerfire rifle calibers are 5.56, 7.62x39 and .308. Not a bad place to be.

I have given some thought to ditching 7.63x39. There are 4 reasons I am hesitant to do this. 1) At this point in time I like having a rifle that is really cheap to shoot (1,000 rounds of Tula 122 grain FMJ for $225.) and reliable as can be. 2) unraveling selling mumble mumble cases of 7.62x39 and a whole bunch of mags would be a real hassle. Also 3) Even during firearmagedon 7.62x39 ammo was generally available. There are just so many rifles and cases of ammo in private hands in the US it is nice to have a rifle that feeds it. 4) While I am not so sure I would push somebody into the AK platform today since the economics are about a wash with AR's; for a person who bought one years ago at a far more reasonable price could have a nice cabin/ truck gun setup of an AK and a few mags for about what a Glock costs today. I should note there are still some good deals out there in the AK market. The Yugo NPAP is a heck of a rifle in general and especially for the money. Also I have heard great things about the new Century C39 V2's.

Called the local gun shop to see if my FN-FAL had arrived. They didn't have it. Check with Atlantic Arms and it had not shipped. It turns out the local gun shop didn't put my order number and name on their FFL when they sent it in (despite me clearly saying to) so it did not get associated with my order and shipped. My FN-FAL finally shipped. Could be worse but I did want to shoot it this weekend which is almost surely not happening. So far from my various sales and purchases 20 FAL mags and 400 rounds of Federal XM80 149gr FMJ have arrived. I have the cash to buy a case of ammo and am waiting on a possible deal to be confirmed one way or another before pulling the trigger. A parts kit is in bound as my birthday present. As to parts I'll likely order additional spares of the most common to break/ wear out type parts (FAL guys feel free to chime in here).

Would like to get 20 more mags for it and plan to do that over the next 2-3 months.

My plans for the rest of this year (in terms of gun stuff) is to buy ammo. If it worked out so I could buy a case of 5.56 and one of .308 that would be great. I also plan to buy some panic prep stuff specifically a lower or two, a half dozen Glock mags, more FAL mags and ammo.

Sunday, June 28, 2015

Scenario Discussion: Greece June 28 2015

When I solicited for input somebody mentioned doing scenario type posts. I thought Greece today (well more this general period not the specific day) would be a good one.

So what is the scenario. The Greece economy is a mess with high unemployment and a boat anchor of debt. It is clear in my mind Greece will never be able to pay their debts off. Whether they are written off by choice or when Greece simply does not pay is a separate discussion and not really relevant to this post.

Greece recently elected an anti austerity government. This government has the unenviable job of trying to placate their creditors/ neighbors and delivery some sort of a win to their people to get the economy moving.

This is significantly complicated because Greece is part of a common currency, the Euro. The good is that they have been able to exploit being linked to much stronger neighbors. The flip side of the coin this is bad (for the government) is they can not simply inflate the currency; lowering its value and making their goods/ services cheaper giving the country more competitive and giving it an economic boost.

Even more troubling the country is in what I call the 'IMF Death Spiral'.

My current working definition of the IMF Death Spiral is "The situation where a country is deeply in debt and continues to receive loans on the conditions that it will follow certain conditions set forth by the IMF or other national/ international organizations. The conditions of the loans typically include cutting government spending, laying off government employees, raising taxes across the board and various social policies that suit their agenda. The stated goal of these reforms is to improve the economy of the country. However at least in the short term it has exactly the opposite effect. High unemployment inevitably follows and the increase in taxation crushes what is left of the economy."

Now one could argue once countries reach the point of the IMF Death Spiral they are a lost cause anyway. On the other hand we could look at results and say the IMF intervention certainly does not help matters any. One could argue the IMF, etc all's goal in lending out huge sums to countries that cannot possibly pay it back is about extracting a profit, offloading the losses to the citizens of first world countries and having a measure of control over the debtor nations. The little I have read on the IMF was pretty eye opening.

I confess to be almost hopelessly stalled halfway through but this book is a good place to look at the business of big banking.

Anyway back to Greece.

There is a distinct possibility that Greece will A) default on it's debts by failing to make their payments. This would be bad. Another possibility is A) and B) Exit the Eurozone AKA Grexit. This would lead to Greece moving back to their own currency which would be valued on the merits of their economy AKA not worth very much.

Basics-

Of course the basic preparedness stuff of long term shelf stable food, water filtration like a good Berkey, first aid gear, alternate cooking like a Coleman stove, etc apply.

Greece gun laws are fairly European (stupid and strict) so legal modern defensive weapons are out but shotguns are allowed for hunting. A double barreled shotgun and a case of buckshot or large game type shot that is legal and stored in your home would be darn handy if/ when things go sideways. Now on the less legal side I am sure there are plenty of AK's floating in from the Balkans and Romania. If a person had the connections, could afford and didn't care about the laws a concealable pistol and a AK with a dozen mags and a couple cases of 7.62x39 ($220 for 1k of Tula 122 gr FMJ at Lucky Gunner) in some hidey hole sure would be darn nice if things went worse than expected. However I would still want that legal shotgun. It will probably be sufficient and a self defense option on the right side of the law is a good thing to have.

I would look to stock up on normal easy to cook shelf stable foods my family ate. Pasta, canned soup, rice, crackers, PB&J, etc. If/ when the Grexit happens inflation and short term shortages would almost surely follow. About 3 months of normal food your family ate and some long term emergency type food/ big buckets of bulk staples would be a good place to be.

Also the possibility of a job being lost now, and especially if/ when things get worse is higher.

Money-

I would seek to get as much of my money out of the banks as possible. Might leave enough in the bank for convenience to pay a couple small bills with a card or order a thing from amazon, etc. Max $500.

Money in banks would almost surely be converted to Drachma at the official conversion rate which is laughably unrealistic. So hypothetically Greece moves to the Drachma with an official exchange rate of 1 Euro to 2 Drachma. A Greek persons 20,000 Euro's would turn into 40,000 Drachma. The problem is things that used to cost a Euro actually cost 4 Drachma which is functionally a 50% loss in purchasing power overnight. The Greek Government would take all the Euro's it stole and use them to buy things they need or to pay enough to their creditors to get a little but of breathing room.

So Joe Greek goes to the bank and pulls out all his Euro's. What to do with this money?

The basis that we mentioned earlier come to mind. As does the shelf stable food. If those bases are not already covered I would put some money towards them. However for the sake of discussion lets say those issues were already addressed.

If I had between one Euro and 20,000 Euro's (the exchange rate right now is 1 dollar to .91 Euro so for normal people amounts we can speak of them as about the same value) I would find a good place in my home, bolt down a compact but quality safe and put my money in it.

If I had more than 20,000E I would take the first 20k and put in a good safe in my residence. This would be my money to buy food, fuel, etc in the short term if/when things go downhill. I figure for most people 20k E is at least 3-4 months cash expenses (food, fuel, etc not rent/ mortgage, eating out, cable/ internet, car insurance, health insurance, taxes, etc) to ride through a rough time. If your family/ lifestyle is such that 20k E is not sufficient for 3-4 months cash expenses adjust the amount upwards accordingly. Maybe a multi millionaire with 7 kids would need 50 or 100K to ride out a few rough months.

For money beyond that 20k/ 3-4 month cash expense level up to say 200k. I would go to a different country for a long weekend of sight seeing and visit a bank. To the best of my knowledge a country defaulting has not been able to confiscate foreign held bank accounts in different (than the defaulting countries) currencies. I would probably go to Switzerland but Cyprus, England and Luxembourg might be good candidates also. Since I have never had enough money to need to look into it I can not say specifically which countries have the strongest protections of bank accounts for in Europe. If a person could get some interest then a savings account is worth thinking about. Then again if a bank in a stable country is going to pay less than 1% and I did not foresee needing the money soon (Say I have an income and am not retired relying on this money to pay my bills.) I might just toss it in a safe deposit box in a stable country like Switzerland.

Of course if I could swing stashing a bunch of alternate passports and a handgun in that safe deposit box that would be cool. The Jason Borne safe deposit box is to safe deposit boxes what the Sara Conner connex is to caches.
A safety deposit box to envy. Only way it would have been any cooler would be some sort of an SBR like an MP-5K and a black velvet bag full of diamonds.
Don't see any food but the Sara Conner Terminator Cache has guns and ammo covered.

As to cash beyond 200k. Honestly a person with over 200k in liquid assets is not going to be looking at some yahoo on the interwebz for advice on financial stuff. At this point you talk to an accountant and a lawyer then posture your financial situation accordingly. Best do it now as big moves take time and there might not be much time left.

Debt-

-If I were Greek my biggest concern would be Euro denominated debt. If we look at different economic collapses the trend is that the government screws the people and the banks help, if just to come out OK. So it is government before banks and banks before the people. A scenario that has plaid out more than once is suddenly all accounts are in the new, less valuable currency at an artificially high exchange rate (say the official rate is 1 Euro to 3 new Drachma but the street price is 1 to 6) but euro denominated debt might still be in Euro's.

Honestly we have not seen this play out with a common currency. The best I can do for actual facts is to look at Argentina's collapse and the recent mess in Russia as their currency has gone down like a desperate aspiring actress on a casting couch with a big name producer. Loans in dollars (in Argentina) and Euro's (in Russia) were fine and dandy till the exchange rate went crazy. Put it like this. Say Joe Greek makes 90k a year and has a 3 year car loan for 30k.  Not the way my family handles money but still pretty reasonable. Lets say the Grexit happens. Now overnight Joe's $30k car loan in Euro's might functionally turn into 60 or 90k value since he is suddenly paid in Drachma which are significantly less valuable than Euro's, far beyond the official exchange rate. Joe's reasonable car is now eating up a quarter or more of his income.

-Of course interest rates in Greece would go through the roof if any of this happened. I would run, not walk, away from any variable interest debt that you did not have the resources to pay off at any time.

Contingency Plans

-If I lived in Athens, and in particular it's downtown/ historic and or financial districts, I would find a friend or family member who lived elsewhere to stay with for a few days if things got weird. I would look to position some food, clothes, etc there. You probably would not need to leave forever but a place to lay low for a couple weeks could come in handy.

For the sake of full disclosure I have lived in Europe but never been in Greece, somewhat ironically because they started having all the money problems and riots. My general sense is that things could get pretty ugly in Athens but a person who lives in a medium sized town or little village is unlikely to have any contact with riots and such. I believe the general security situation would deteriorate if things went downhill but mostly the bad stuff would play out in larger cities. A village of 300 or town of 3,000 is going to fair better than a big city, let alone an urban center.

-I would look hard at what my financial situation would be after a significant loss in purchasing power, say two semi arbitrary numbers 30% and 50% respectively.  Could I pay my bills? Would it be prudent to sell the fancy car (with a loan to match) and downsize to a more modest but decent paid off car now, before other people are trying to do the same thing?

-What is my plan if I (or we in a dual income household) lose my job in an environment where there is very high (say over 30%) unemployment and many well qualified people are out of work? Do I have an in demand or easy to get into (family business, etc) back up gig? Maybe you are in sales but were the best bartender in town and still have a bunch of contacts that would give you a job tomorrow? Sure welding in one's parents or Uncle's shop is not what a mechanical engineer wants to do but if it pays the bills till a better job can be found it is what people do. A union plumber probably does not want to fix clogged toilets for $100 but that is a constantly in demand job. Point made.

-Presuming Joe Greek, like most people including yours truly, does not own his residence free and clear. Since t is very realistic that he could be unemployed for a long time Joe should be working hard on a back up plan. Say Joe loses his job and is unemployed for a year (not unrealistic, Greek youth [which might be a pretty wide group I can not recall actual ages to go with the stats.] unemployment is about 50%.) and thus are not going to be able to pay the mortgage/ rent. If Joe has some money a modest little cottage or just a piece of land would be great. Depending on where Joe is located camping after the collapse might be an option. However a much better option would be to stay with your parents or relatives in their paid off modest, avoiding high property taxes, home.

For this problem let us look at  a variety of options for different  financial situations:

'I have resources'-A little cottage on the coast in a small village/ town with enough room to put in a garden and host  a few relatives or friends  would be awesome. You could enjoy it for vacations during good times and be ready if bad times come.

'I have some money'- A piece of land that is paid for free and clear where you could put a travel trailer or at least set up some sort of decent camp would not be a bad setup at all. Things would be kind of rough but at least you could pre position supplies and nobody could hassle you for living there on your own land.

'I can scrap up a few bucks' - A travel trailer you could park at a relatives or move from place to place as needed. Living at a relatives is going to be a lot more palatable for everybody if you all have a self contained space to live, or at least sleep in.

'Resources are very limited'- A good 3 season tent with a tarp big enough to cover it, a Coleman stove, some sleeping bags and good sleeping pads. Maybe you can live or at least camp at a relative or friends place.

'Broke as a joke'- A cheap tent and a tarp.

 I feel the need to reiterate these are worst case back up plans. Obviously Joe Greek, and more importantly the Mrs Hellena Greek, would prefer to stay in their normal residence but having a plan in case that is not an option is prudent.

Well I hope this gives some insight on how I would handle the localized but really bad situation that might unfold in Greece.

As always I am eager to read your comments.






Friday, June 26, 2015

Selling Stuff

As you have likely noticed I have been doing some spring cleaning. Sold a couple of things this weekend (a brewing kit and a knife) then today sold my 30-30 Winchester and 200 rounds of ammo. Still have some ammo left, will likely sell some around hunting season and keep a couple hundred rounds because it is a pretty common caliber and that's a sunken cost anyway.

I do not have a lever action Winchester any more which kind of sucks but I eliminated a caliber which is cool. The only situation where that old 30-30 would out perform other rifles on inventory is if I needed a nanny state legal rifle.

What am I planning to spend these newfound gains on? Will see how my birthday cracks out then make a decision based on what I get. ? Probably a case of good surplus 7.62 ammo for the FAL.

At that point I'd probably look hard at some sort of mag fed bolt gun or maybe a .357 mag lever action rifle. Down the road I will get some sort of lever action .357 but that is pretty far down the road; like after another AR, 10-22, Glock 9mm and a Para FAL kind of down the road.

Well this has turned out to be a win win. I have cleaned out a good chunk of space in my garage and store areas and freed up resources to buy some things I can really use but can not afford to purchase outright. I am about out of stuff to sell but it has been a very positive experience.

Barter Town: Spring Cleaning 2015

Updated 6/26 No reasonable offers will be refused.

If I earn another hundred bucks I can get a case of 5.56 which sounds pretty darn good to me.


 I teased it before. Folks seemed to think my idea not to include shipping in costs as it would drag up the price of items but instead have a surcharge for smaller purchases. After deliberation I set the amount (under which a $10 surcharge will be added) as $60. The reason for that instead of $50 is that price would let someone buy an item, toss in a $10 pouch and avoid paying the surcharge. In effect I would be giving away the smaller item.

 As to procedures either leave a comment or email me at theotherryan@yahoo.com and include Barter Town in the subject line (both is the best approach). Obviously the first person to make a full price offer gets the item. If they want to bargain (which is totally fine) I will do one of four things: A) accept right away B) counter offer, C) tell them I'll see how much interest the item gets and maybe get back to them or D) outright reject their offer.

EDITED TO INCLUDE: Payment can be done through paypal (theotherryan@yahoo.com) or USPS money order.

Anyway here we go.

Knives:
British Sheffiield made OEM Survival Knife. It cost me $85 plus shipping. I received this knife and immediately just didn't like the way it handled. Too heavy for it's length in my opinion. I never used it as I planned to return it. For reasons lost to time the return got messed up and in frusteration I put it on a shelf and a few months went by. 

Holsters:
Safariland 6285 1.5in drop holster for a Glock 17 with TLR-1 light. I know they also fit a G19 just fine. Also I believe they fit the G22/23 as holsters are generally compatible between the two.
Decided to keep this.

Bianchi Model 7/7L pancake holster for a full sized 1911.Slightly used in excellent condition Asking $35.

Quality leather OWB holster for a Glock 26 though it will fit a G19 just fine. Got it in a complicated trade and don't need it. Manufacturer is unknown but it is a nice well made holster. Used in excellent condition. Asking $40.
Cross breed style holster (manufacturer unknown) for a Glock 9mm. Used in VG/G condition. Asking $30.
Sold

Bianchi (I'm pretty sure) leather IWB holster for a Walther PP/PPK. Would presumably fit similar sized guns like a Bersa .380 but again do your own research and take your own chances. It was barely used as I owned the PP for about a week but probably sat on the shelf at the gun shop for a minute so the leather is pretty stuff. A rub of saddle soap or leather conditioner should fix that minor problem. Asking $15.


Other Stuff:

Springfield leather (National Match?) sling. In very good condition. I purchased it because the Garand needed a sling. Took it off when I sold the rifle and do not have a use for it. Asking $25.

Side saddle for a Mossberg 500. Can't remember who made it and the bolts to mount it were lost who knows when. Asking $10.
 

Leather sling. Asking $20.


PUR hiker water filter. Asking $40. They don't make these anymore but they take Katadyn replacement filters.

PUR water filter. Asking $40. They don't make these anymore but they take Katadyn replacement filter.

My goal is to make enough cash to fund some projects. Honestly as such my primary goal is to turn this stuff into cash. Inevitably the topic of trades will come up. First of all valuing trades is hard, everyone wants to value their stuff close to new and the other guys at half the value. I tend to look at both sides stuff based on % of new price and factor in condition. If you have something else to trade I might be interested in I guess let me know. Worst case I will say no thanks.

Well that is what I have up for sale now. Please let me know if you have any questions. Barter Town is now officially open.

Edited to include:  I am going to start selling this stuff in other places so if you had an eye on something it would be smart to move sooner instead of later.

As to trades if I can use something I'll probably take it. Make me an offer.

Monday, June 22, 2015

Precision Rifle and General .308 Rifle Pair Discussion

Today I want to talk about 'precision rifles' a little bit.To avoid rehashing here is an old post on bolt action rifles and a follow up on precision rifles.

To define a precision rifle " For the sake of this conversation I will define a 'precision rifle' as "A combination of rifle, optic and ammunition capable of achieving 2MOA accuracy out to 600 meters chambered in a cartridge that moderately resists the pressure of side winds and can penetrate moderate cover".  The specs to facilitate that are going to be a bolt action or semi automatic rifle chambered in a relatively high velocity cartridge over .26 caliber for which modern match grade type ammunition is reasonably available. We are talking .270, 7mm mag, .308, 30'06, etc."

From a lot of recent reading I should note this is being able to CONSISTENTLY perform under 2 MOA under a variety of conditions with a variety of ammunition. Sure it is great if you had eggs benedict for breakfast, it is 1045, the temperature is 68 degrees with  55% humidity and you are shooting one specific load like 168 grain Sierra Match Kings loaded by Cor Bon or 165 grain Hornady Interlock BTSP but with a variety of different decent ammo like Winchester 150 grain Powerpoint or 180 grain Remington Core-Lokt ammo.

For a precision rifle semi automatic's are an option. Most M1A's and many of the better AR-10's can meet the prescribed standard. As noted before the issue is cost. A $1,600 AR-10 might be able to perform like a $700 Savage. Both are great, it is just a question of what you want and your budget.

The topic of optics came up recently in a discussion. The US Military used 10X fixed scopes for a long time. Those have benefits but I would lean towards a variable power for general civilian use. The reason for this is the potential need to shoot at shorter ranges than military snipers. A civilian might use a very capable bolt gun to shoot a deer at 50 meters where a 10X scope would suck.

Something in the 3-9 or 4-12 range with a reticle that lends itself to measuring distance and wind (mil dots are optimal) would be really nice. Turrets to make adjustments on the fly, at least for distance, are handy but not absolutely necessary for most civilian applications.

We could discuss the .308/7.62x51 cartridge here. Certainly there are other options but I think the .308 is a pretty solid choice. They are chambered in about all of the common rifles out there which would fit this applications. One of the biggest benefits is they are chambered in a round that is also available in common (yes the BAR exists but they are rare and expensive) military pattern mag fed rifle. So you could have say a scoped bolt action rifle for long or very precise shots and a semi auto rifle for other work. If I was forced to own one caliber of rifle it would be .308. Also if a guy was setting up a cabin or retreat set up he could bring two rifles and just one type of ammo.

 Bearing in mind the .308 is an expensive cartridge, and a two gun setup like this is not going to be cheap any way you cut it, there is room for a fairly modest budget. A guy could get a used Savage 10 with an optic for a few hundred bucks and a PTR-91 for around $900. Sure he would need some good precision or hunting type ammo and a bunch of milsurp ball for the PTR. Still just for guns under 2k would give a guy a rifle that can reach out several hundred meters and another than can shred light cover and kick butt to 400-500 meters. For a bit more money a guy could get a nice Remington 700 and a DS Arms Voyager FN-FAL. Another bump up the socio economic ladder might be a CZ Varmit and a Sig 716. For those who are completely loaded a Steyr SSG or Accuracy International bolt gun combined with a real high end AR-10 like a LaRue, Knight Armament SR-25 or LWRC Repr would be a sweet set up.

For folks who really want to shoot LONG (say 500+ meters) something like Federal Premier Gold Match 168 gr or Lake City XM118 would make sense to feed the precision rifle. That being said many of us do not have enough range, enough rifle/ optic or enough skill to see the difference between that ammo and say Winchester 150 grain SP Power Point ammo that will certainly stop a man or animal out to 400 meters. I would try to find a pair of rounds that suited my needs and were more or less similar in drop and general performance. My gut says a 150 grain SP round and generic 147-149 gr ball ammo probably perform fairly close to each other. A handloader could probably do well by using the same brass, powder and primer but a 150 grain SP/HP round for precision and a generic 147-149 grain FMJ for the semi auto rifle.

I would use standard MILSURP or NATO spec type brass cased ammo to feed the semi auto rifle. I would have each rifle zeroed for it's ammo but know how they shoot with the other one. I would probably stock a ratio of about 1 match/ hunting bullet to 10 standard bullets. The reasons for this are 1) you are likely to shoot much more when firing the semi auto. 2) The precision gun should still get adequate performance with standard ammo. 3) Cost effectiveness. 4) For most realistic applications within the skill levels of people reading this blog normal decent ammo will do the job.Of course the guy shooting a Steyr SSG or Accuracy International in F Class Competitions every weekend and consistently placing can disregard this part but he isn't learning anything from me about distance shooting anyway.

If this discussion is really going anywhere I would say the theme is that a person could do well to own a pair of rifles in .308, one of which is set up to shoot long distance and the other of which is more suited to medium range work with a semi auto capacity to put rounds down range to break an attack or gain momentum for an attack. 

Got .308?



Saturday, June 20, 2015

Budget Preparedness: Twenty Bucks at The Dollar Store

Today we went to the dollar store. Wifey goes there semi regularly. They have little art projects that suit my kids age bracket's short attention span and destructive nature. Also they have a smoking deal on frozen fruit my kids love.

I wanted to see what sort of preparedness stuff a person could get at the dollar store for twenty bucks. Well it was twenty items and there was tax so I guess 21 or 22 depending on your area but close enough. Other than spending twenty bucks I didn't really have a plan. I used criteria pretty heavily channeled from Glenn Tate of 299 Days: The Preparation (Volume 1) (books 1 and 2 reviewed here) by choosing food that can be cooked by boiling water or just heated up. I also got some spices because we can probably use more of those.

What I bought:
A 5 pack (for $1) of top ramen
3 things of pasta
3 cans of pasta sauce
3 things of just add water pancake mix
2 things of syrup
2 things of instant mashed potatoes
2 things of garlic sale
1 bottle of hot sauce
1 can opener
1 bottle of bleach
1 bottle of vegetable oil

As you can see I pretty much went for food. Tossed in a can opener because everyone can use a spare. Also tossed in a can of bleach because you can always use some extra disinfectant in bad times.

Part of this little experiment was my own curiosity. The other part was to show people what you can do with twenty bucks. That semi  arbitrary number was chosen because anybody but a hobo could put into food storage say every other week or so. For my twenty bucks we got a lot of easy to prepare food that will store for awhile.

Say a person spent twenty dollars every other week on food. Granted this is just food storage, you need water filtration, ammo, fuel, medical and all sorts of other stuff.  I hesitate to lay out a plan off the cuff here but maybe on the non food weeks a person spends $20 on the other stuff in some sort of rotation (ammo, water filtration [till you have at least a good water filter with a spare element], fuel, medical/ hygiene, misc). There would be some build up time while a person had money stashed in envelopes or something saving up for bigger ticket items but a dozen cans of food and some spaghetti one week, a box of bullets for the family deer rifle the next, more food then hygiene stuff, food, fuel, etc).

What I am driving at is that even on a pretty modest budget ($20 a week) you can really get somewhere over time. Of course if you can add a little more things will add up even faster.






Thursday, June 18, 2015

And The Winner of the Semi Auto .308 Selection Is.....


DS Arms 'Voyager' FN-FAL with a 21 inch barrel.

Why, Well that is a complicated question. Let us look at the common available semi auto .308's.

Fairly unbiased process of elimination knocked out:

AR-10-  The onees in my budget are of pretty questionable quality. The whole market is a mess with a serious lack of standardization. There are weird proprietary parts all up in pretty much every AR-10. To further complicate things none of these rifles (excluding the way too rich for my blood Knight SR-25) are really battle tested. Don't get me wrong, there is a lot of promise and I do believe these are the way of the future for the semi auto .308 but it might be a few years till the previously listed issues get unscrewed.

M1A- Honestly these rifles should have never been made. Also the rifles are silly expensive and accessories are even worse.

Completely biased process of elimination knocks out:

The PTR-91. It is the cheapest semi auto .308 made by a reputable manufacturer. Accessories, and in particular mags are quite affordable. Why did it get eliminated? Honestly I am just really ambivalent about the PTR-91. Even if it doesn't make sense paying a grand for a rifle I am not at all excited about is kind of silly.

So we have spoken about the problems (real or perceived) with other platforms. Now specifically why the FN-FAL.

Unbiased Points.
-Proven design. The FN-FAL was to the free world what the AK was to the communist world. Sure the US (and I believe Taiwan) had the M14 and Germany/ Portugal plus some others had the G3 but the FAL was the service rifle for 90 countries.
-Wide parts base. Sort of like say, the Winchester 30-30, so many were made for so long that parts are always going to be out there. Being dispassionate about this was hard for me. I have owned a Winchester 30-30 for my entire adult life and love them. They are beautiful rifles. Commander Zero and Peter of Bayou Renaissance Man brought up a point that really helped with this. Honestly the only situation where a 30-30 would beat a FN-FAL is in a serious nanny state situation. Thankfully as of now I am not in one of those and I hope to stay out of one.
-Away from the FAL in general and specifically to the Voyager. If possible I prefer the budget gun from a quality company (The Kahr CW9 is an example of this) than the supposedly nicer guns from a lower tier manufacturer like say a DPMS LR-308.
-While there is probably a temptation to keep messing with it the adjustable gas flow might be handy for shooting different ammunition or getting a dirty rifle running again in an emergency.

Biased Points.
-The rife has a cool history. The era of the 'battle rifle' was pretty cool. Since they were a post Korea, pre gulf war weapon they mostly saw action in Africa. I stumbled into an interesting post on the history of the FN-FAL and G3 in Africa that is good for a coffee break.
-I sort of made a bargain with myself to sell the 30-30, eliminating a caliber, and pony up for a FAL. Since I am realistically going to have one (or just maybe two, a para FAL would be sweet, gosh I am starting an expensive hobby) or maybe two the price difference over a PTR-91 is not a deal maker.
-I really wanted one. They are a cool, classy rifle. The Voyager put a DS Arms rifle into my realistic price range.
-I love the way a FAL with a wood stock looks.




So anyway I ordered a FAL and some mags. I'd like 50 but 20 is not a bad place to be at. Going to get some ammo and hopefully a parts kit to provide spares soon.


Monday, June 1, 2015

From Around The Web

Lucky Gunner does an interesting post on mounting optics to the AK platform. An Ultimak rail with an Aimpoint micro is probably the way to go for a defensive rifle. Honestly around the range you would need a scope you probably have the wrong rifle in a ( a 7.62x39 chambered) AK. That being said I can see the utility of a low variable or fixed power scope on one for older eyes or hunting where target discrimination (2 point not OK but 3 are, etc). For that option I would either use one of the side mounted rails or replace the whole top cover with a purpose made one. I know Texas Weapons Systems makes one and think Midwest Industries does too.

John Mosby talks Escape and Evasion 1 and 2. While I certainly would not disagree with anything John said I wish to put some emphasis on two points from the articles. First is physical fitness. If you are going to make some sort of gaping burst to get out of the immediate area they could cordon then make a slow determined slog to wherever you are going you have to be able to physically cover many miles under stress over multiple days. Second is consistently having some useful tools on your person and a more robust fighting load or get home bag readily available will give you a fighting chance to have some gear if things go down.

Max Velocity talks about different gear he is producing in partnership with AMH Tactical Gear. I am starting to get a case of gear lust for that chest rig.

Tactical Professor, who runs an excellent blog, talks about a shooting case up in Maine. It is one of those messy family farm/ small business things. This situation should have been settled by people acting like adults over a cup of coffee or worst case gone to civil litigation but instead one guy ended up dead and another is probably going to spend the rest of their life in jail. 

Take away's
1- Don't shoot people over stuff! Aside from ethical considerations we could look at it strictly from a financial angle. Lawyers and trials are really expensive.
2- Know your local laws. This might have been a different case in a place with a less restrictive rule of retreat.
3- Having a less lethal weapons bears consideration. A can of mace might have stopped this incident but that is unlikely. It might ave given the guy enough space to get out of these.  More realistically it could have showed that the man was trying to use the smallest amount of force necessary and the much larger, younger man kept attacking.
4- This case was further muddled because while the family were probably in the wrong there was not a clear criminal act going on like say if one person owned or rented the shop and the other was trespassing.

Sunday, May 31, 2015

Range Report 5/31/2015

I took out the trusty Glock, the .22's and a buddies AR pistol.

The Glock recently got a Grip Force Adapter. It definitely goes a long way to making a famously not ergonomic pistol feel and point better. Not for small hands but otherwise I like it. Within the limits of the range I did what I could as they did not allow drawing from a holster or 'rapid fire' aka more than 1 round a second. Kept everything in the vital zone so that was good. So pretty much I did 50 rounds or so worth of of 1 shot from the high ready. Hindsight being 20/20 I should have shot some at 25 meters but oh well.

The .22's were fun as always. I haven't shot much .22 lately due to the ammo mess but I do have some set side specifically for training so figured why not.

The buddies AR pistol was good. Of course nobody wants to get into the questionable shouldering issue so we just shot it from the cheek. That handy little thing could certainly bring the pain out to say 150 meters. It would likely fit in a variety of fairly tall backpacks, tennis racket cases, etc to move around discretely. Also since it is technically a pistol you could say have it loaded in a vehicle or legally carry it in the type of bag previously mentioned. Not  a do everything piece but a pretty handy little PDW.

I really need to get my S together and buy a real full sized purpose made range bag. My little Blackhawk Sportster is good for taking a gun or two to the range but for bigger trips it is not sufficient. This was highlighted when I went to grab the gun oil and it turned out I had unintentionally brought scrubber/ degreaser instead when trying to throw things together at the last minute. If I had a bag the right size and kept that stuff ready to go it would not be an issue.

Furthermore I need to get a second set of electronic ear muffs to keep with the shooting stuff. I almost forgot to bring them today as they sit on top of the Sentry Safe Home Defender in the bedroom.


Woodburn is a very nice range with cool people. I always have a good time there.

Plus also shooting is fun.

Saturday, May 30, 2015

Reader Question: Glock 43 vs 17

I tried your contact button but it did not work.

My question is: I have some spare cash laying around and I can pick up a Glock 17 that I have spare parts and mags for, or I can get a Glock 43.  I am wondering if there is a significant difference between the two.  I realize the size thing and the 17 versus 6 thing.  I handled a 43 today and it felt top heavy without a loaded mag, much more so than a 42.  I currently have a S&W 638 and model 10 with a 2 inch barrel, a Keltec P3AT, and a Ruger 101. So I have smaller "deep carry" guns.  I am thinking the money would be better spent on a 17 as my son has one so then I would be looking at a two is one situation, this is why I have the spare parts and mags for the 17.  I carry a 1911 so carrying the 17 would not be a problem.

That or I say piss on it all and buy the Savage A17 that I really don't need but want, or is there something else out there I should consider?

Maybe you can make this into a blog post, I am not expecting a direct answer.

Thanks
Jeff


Ryan here: I'll check out the contact button thing. Onto the question.

I suppose it depends a lot on what you want the gun for. Do you want a different CCW pistol (it doesn't sound like you do) or do you want to stash another Glock in case S hits the F?

In general I am really underwhelmed with single stack 9mm's. Tried it and the whole thing just didn't really work all that well. .j    b b l;lThey are (most would say) too big for pocket carry.They are really not that much smaller (.89-.95 width vs 1.2ish) than double stack semi auto's but hold a lot fewer bullets. Also since the butt is necessarily uniform throughout they are harder to conceal than a J frame even if the dimensions are comparable. When people, as they almost universally do get an extended mag so they have more grip these guns are as long as a compact (G19) sized pistol. Personally I carry the Ruger LCP in and around my little sleepy town and the Glock 19 when I venture further, carry a lot of cash, etc.

As to the Glock 43 in general. For the sake of full disclosure I have little to no experience with this gun, can't remember if I've even fondled one or not. I think it is a bit expensive since there are so many competitive guns at lower prices (Kahr CW series, Ruger LC9, S&W Shield, etc). Still it has value because it should bring Glock reliability to a market with some questionable guns (Kel Tech, Diamondback, etc). With the concealed carry market booming and people loving Glock 9mm's I'm sure they will sell a bunch; this guy just isn't interested. I find that with a decent belt and pants bought 2 inches larger with a pistol in mind I can conceal a similarly sized double stack pistol as easily as a single stack. Until technology advances to the point where we are getting single stack 9mm's in the Walther PPK size range I don't see that opinion changing.

One of the biggest benefits about Glocks is that so many parts are inner changeable. For Glocks in 9mm and 40 S&W I believe the only size specific parts are barrel, slide, recoil spring and frame. This means my parts box for the G19 could probably fix a friends full sized .40 cal G22. Magazines are downwards compatible (a G26 can take 19 and 17 mags, a 19 can take 17 mags).

Paul Howe uses a Glock 26 for CCW and a G19 with a light for a duty type setup. Aside from G26 mags they both take all the same ammo, mags, parts, etc.  I don't mention that entirely from a fan boy perspective but A) it bears on this discussion and B) it's interesting to see the gear/ firearm choices really experienced people make.

As to .17 honestly I don't get it. I guess it can theoretically be a bit more accurate but if my 10/22 won't do the job I'll grab Project AR. Sort of along these lines I once looked at getting a .22 mag rifle and decided against it.

To your specific question I would go with the Glock 17 especially since you have a few small CCW type pistols. However to better answer the question I would consider a smaller Glock like a 19 or 26. I would lean to a G19 since your bench is pretty deep on small guns. That would give you compatability with the G17 and a slightly smaller gun that has a lot of bullets yet is realistic to conceal in anything less than a jacket.

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

Thursday, May 28, 2015

.357 Magnum Lever Action Over 30-30 Winchester?

I have been toying with the idea of moving to a .357 mag for my lever action rifle. The .357 mag out of a 16-20in barrel is a different beast than from a pistol. That being said the best .357 mag loads like a 158 grain Speer Gold Dot is at best going to be on par with a fine but completely standard 30-30 load like a 150 gr Winchester SP. Even with the best cartridge gaming argument one can try to say a .357 mag is equal to a 30-30 but nobody, even with the most blatant bias, tries to say the .357 is superior in any way. That being said.....

Going to a .357 lever gun would let me simplify the logistics a bit. Also the appeal of throwing a hundred rounds of .357 ammo in a bag then taking a wheel gun and a carbine out into the woods is appealing.

I think a Marlin 1894 in .357 mag would be the answer to this problem though an (exceedingly rare) Winchester Trapper .357 would be the bees knees.

Thoughts?

Monday, May 18, 2015

What Did You Do To Prepare This Week?

-Did my dry fire 3x like a good boy should.

-Picked up a box of Remington 150 grain SP ammo.

-Repacked my work ruck. Once we finally ditch the ACU pattern I intend to unify those two systems (work ruck and BOB) into one. It will let me keep things simple and avoid a lot of duplication.

-We are working at rotating the food in the freezer.

-Bought some gold and silver from Montana Rarities the Metals Pimp.

Next week I plan to
-Dry fire
-Hit the range
-Put seedlings into pots
-Start a new batch of seedlings
-Sharpen the chainsaw
-Tidy up the garage
-List some more stuff for sale. Speaking of which I still have things from the last batch.

Friday, May 8, 2015

Friday Question: Plate Carriers and 7.62x39 JHP Ammo

Question in bold. My answer in italics.

Do you recommend any of the online plate carrier/steel plate dealers? Looking for good quality (350-500$) as the gear will be taken in and out of a truck daily. There is also a big blackberry problem in the area and the thorns can fray nice fibers easily. Do you know anything or have any recommendations about Special Operations Equipment ?

Ryan here: My steel plate setup is AR500 plates in an Exo Carrier from JRH Enterprises. It is more of a full body armor set up than a stripped down minimalist plate carrier but I am happy with it so far. If I was looking for a more PC type set up I would get a set of AR-500 plates and a Condor PC.

Honestly if I was worried about thorns tearing something up I would do the math on replacing it every 3-4 years if/ when it gets torn up enough to genuinely not function. IMO this lends itself to a more affordable set up like Condor than a more expensive set up.

I do not personally own any of their stuff but I have only heard good things about Original SOE gear. Lots of professional and semi professional hard use types swear by their stuff.

Also any personal experience with the 8m3- 7.62x39 round?

Ryan here: Honestly I had to google this one. From what I can tell it is a 124 gr JHP round imported by Wolf and maybe some other folks. Honestly exact sourcing and branding on com bloc stuff is kind of iffy but I'm doing my best.  

I have shot a fair bit of this ammo. My rifle really likes it and a 7.62x39 hollow point is going to be a heck of a man stopper or medium sized game round. My rifle shoots it with the same reliability and accuracy as normal 7.62x39 FMJ ammo. I prefer the HP stuff as it offers a significant ballistic advantage. My stash of AK ammo is probably 60% normal FMJ and 40%  8m3 or similar HP ammo. Honestly of the two I buy whatever is cheapest. With an AK if you put round(s) generally where they are supposed to go it will do it's job. If prices are the same I buy HP ammo.

Hopefully that answers your questions.

Apologies if these are answered on the blog. I don’t always have time to get on but send an email.

Thank you again Ryan!

Thursday, May 7, 2015

Glock Magazine Sleeves, Economics and Other Things

Something that came up in class was that the G19 grip is a bit short, not too short to shoot, just a little short to get my hand on fast on the draw. I used another guys G17 for a bit and I got a faster, more positive, grip on the gun. Since I'm using it with a light in a drop holster bulk isn't an issue. Still I do not want to lose the versatility of the G19. I am thinking about using a G17 mag and getting one of those magazine sleeve things. Have any of you used one? If so what do you think of them?

Bayou Renaissance Man talks economics. All news is bad. We are living in a false economy.

Turns out that first run of Magpul Gl9 mags wasn't quite ready for prime time. However being a good company Magpul is making good on them with a strait swap out. I'll still wait a couple months before picking up some.

I need to get a shot timer. The CED 7000 came highly recommended. Thoughts?

I had wanted to get a case of 5.56 ammo but my short to mid term goals have changed some. I want to set my glock up right with a grip force adapter, get a shot timer, upgrade my appendix CCW holster and a couple other little things. Some parts of my system have been proven worthy but others are left wanting. Additionally I want to save up for another class in the fall. Using this resource (CSAT) to the fullest while I am relatively local just makes sense. I would have a hard time paying to fly in, getting a rental car and going to a course.

The honest truth is I am far more likely to get in a fight with a pistol than a rifle, period. Also I am infinitely more likely to get in a pistol fight than run through my dozen or so loaded rifle mags, let alone need case of ammo X.

Listening to the beginning of 299 days again I got a good reminder to focus on what I can control. I can't stop a hurricane but I can have a Honda EU2000 with 25 gallons of treated gas (aside from other stores), plenty of food and a chain saw. I can't fix our economy but I can put back food and buy a little silver and gold from the metals pimp. I can't stop illegal immigrant criminals or meth heads or Daesh/ ISIS inspired terrorists from doing their thing but I can regularly carry a concealed handgun and work hard to be capable with it.

What I am getting at is that you need to quit worrying too much about things you can not control and focus more on how you can control the effects of things coming down the pike.

Friday, May 1, 2015

Grim Reminder: You Aren't Getting any Ammo Resupply in an Emergency

Bayou Renaissance Man brings up a very good point. If something bad happens you can not plan on getting ANY ammo through normal sources. Sure you could trade for it but since that stuff just became unobtanium the black free market price is going to be painful. The point is that while there can be oversights and you could be short for something like that old 20 gauge shotgun rusting in the safe you best plan to cover all of your important core needs.

We could have a long discussion about how much is enough. That discussion has been had here before . Also Peter shared his thoughts. Of course the scenario(s) you are preparing for matter considerably here. I listed my chosen amounts. That is for a pretty nasty situation but maybe not quite a full on mad max one. Half of that, or even a third, is plenty for some sort of short to moderate (say a month or two) type event like Hurricane Katrina or whatnot.

The point is that you need to get whatever you feel you need sooner instead of later. Also it is not a bad idea to think of some overages for family/ friends/ neighbors. Case in point I have a stash sufficient to let me give a neighbor 50 rounds of 9mm or 50 rounds of .38 special , ditto for a few mags of 5.56 or 7.62x39. Still I could stand to stash some ammo specifically for this eventuality. Say some buckshot, about 250 rounds, since my neighbors all seem to be into the duck hunting and thus shotguns. Also if going full bore I'd stash 100 rounds each of .40 S&W and .45 since I have little (.45) to none (.40) of those common calibers on inventory. The point I am getting at is that you should plan for whatever ammo you might give out in an emergency above your personal stash.

Got Ammo?

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

From Around The Web

Lucky Gunner's Guide to the S&W .38/.357 Mag revolver. A pretty cool resource to wade through their myriad of different frames, configurations and model numbers. 

Two Commandments by Kenny of Knuckle Draggin My Life Away. Beware. Clicking through the link is fine for anybody. Wading into the general blog will expose you to foul language and pictures of beautiful women in bikini's, thong underwear, etc. Depending on your perspective that might be awesome or offensive.

Captains Journal talks M4 reliability. Looks like we are going back to industry, which makes some great rifles, for suggestions on improving the standard service rifle.

Mike Pattone and Defense Review talk The Big M4 Fouling Myth. They make a compelling case to swap out a few simple, user level, parts to improve the rifles ability to feed and cycle. Specifically a heavier buffer/ buffer spring and an upgraded extractor spring with crane 0 ring. Good to think about and not too expensive to impliment. Keep existing parts as spares.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Pastor Joe Fox 'Before You Buy PM's'



On the ammo discussion:
10,000 rounds by Pastor Joe Fox
Cheaper than Dirt chimes in and thinks 2 cases per rifle is pretty reasonable
My thoughts on How Much Ammo is Enough

To recap my thoughts:
Fighting Rifle like an AK-47 3,000 rounds of 7.62x39. Ditto for 3 cases of 5.56 for the AR, etc all
Fighting Pistol- 1k of 9mm or whatever your flavor is.
Shotgun- 1k mixed between buckshot, slugs and small game loads. Depending on your area and firearms setup you might want more buckshot for say an urban scenario or more small game loads if you are set on defensive rifles and out in the sticks. Honestly I would probably go 300 buck, 200 slugs and 500 various small game loads like #6 and BB because I'm more likely to shoot 5 rounds a week at squirrels or birds than burglars.

In general:

I think there are a couple of ways to look at precious metals.

One could look at them as a part of a survivalist type plan. From this perspective on the low $$$ end you might have a bag of 90% silver dimes to barter with. This could be $20 face (14.2ish ounces, costing about $300 today) or a big $100 face bag. On the high end you might have a bit more silver and whatever the balance of your funds is in gold.

Personally I do not look at PM's as part of my survivalist plans. If I was headed to Ye Olde Barter Faire sure I would have a few dollars face in 90% but I would also have fifty rounds of .22 lr, a pack of sewing needles, some pins, etc. The way I look at PM's is not so much as  a survivalist thing but as the uuber conservative portion of my financial plans. Some folks put a bit of money into bonds or treasuries, I go with silver and gold instead.

Anyway I thought the video was worthwhile and thought provoking. I hope it is equally worthwhile to you.

Saturday, April 18, 2015

2016 Gun Buying Plans

I talked about getting ready for the upcoming (pretty well scheduled) 2016 Election Hysteria awhile back. Figured it is time for an update.

Since writing that post I did order a stripped lower.

Would like to get 2 more, maybe this weekend. I look at these as a stock option. For $40-60ish they give me the option of buying an AR down the road at a pretty normal price, despite whatever AWB type stuff could get passed. $200 in stripped lowers in the safe would let me buying that 20" M16 A4 style tack driver I kind of want, build a pink AR for Wifey and one for each kid.

I got a 3rd mag for the LCP. Probably good enough for now.

Also want to get some of those new Glock magpul mags to try out. A half dozen of them would go a long way to testing the (almost surely great) new product and getting ahead for when I eventually get another Glock.

Have not picked up any more .380 or .308. These are pretty low on the list as tiny pocket pistol ammo and deer hunting rounds aren't going anywhere any time soon. Still on general principle over the course of the year I want to get some of each, bare minimum 200 rounds each .380 ball and .308 150gr SP.

The proceeds from my spring cleaning sale are going to be turned into a case of 5.56. Honestly I fear some day we will be laughing about $350 a case the way folks are talking about SA 5.56 at $200 a case in the early 00's. I have habitually been short of my self identified goals for 5.56 so this year I want to get closer to, if not achieve, my desired goal of 3k (per fighting rifle).

Beyond that in no particular order I plan to pick up some HK G3 mags and if I get a windfall of some sort a full spare parts kit for a G3. Bet you can guess what my next years goal is?

I should note that hysteria aside I see the chances of anything meaningful happening at a national level to limit our 2A rights as a no go. I'm not saying to go out and charge everything you will ever want on the visa because this will be your last chance ever. What I am saying is that next years market might be wonky so it is prudent to front load some firearm and firearms related purchases and not plan on much happening next year. Honestly if I had the cash to buy all the stuff listed plus a PTR-91 today I would do it and just be done for 1.75 years  but well I don't so some stuff has to wait.

Thoughts?

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Ruger LCP Custom First Range Trip Report

I finally got the Ruger LCP Custom out to the range. Took a box of .380 PMC FMJ's and some .380 Hornady 90 gr JHP American Handgunner ammo.

Accuracy: I was pleasantly surprised. This little pistol was pretty shootable. Getting head sized shots at 10 yards and chest at 15-25 was not at all difficult. I was able to shoot it to that level of accuracy with decent follow up time so that was nice. I shoot it way better than a J frame.

Recoil: Negligible. It isn't a gun you would want to fire 500 rounds through but I shot 65ish and could have shot another box without any unpleasantness.

Reliability: Kind of a sad face here. Out of 65 rounds there were 2 failures to feed. The first one was an FMJ that just didn't chamber. I racked the slide and it loaded just fine. The second was a JHP when I went to load the pistol. The first round in the mag jammed up on the feed ramp and got dented up pretty bad. Maybe when I went to load the mag I didn't fully seat it or failed to pull the slide back all the way, I don't know.

I am taking this with an open (albeit annoyed) mind as I somehow failed to lubricate the gun at all. I shot it right out of the box totally dry. After a shot of lube there were not any more issues. I'm hoping further testing shows those FTF's were an anomoly.

Presuming the stats on reliability gets to 99% for subsequent practice I think this is going to make a nice little carry pistol.

Saturday, April 11, 2015

My Level 2.5 Get Home Bag Update 4/11/2015

I talked about my level 2.5 system awhile back and did a full breakdown. Since then I acquired a new bag and have trimmed the system down to a more manageable size/ weight. Anyway somebody asked for a full breakdown so here it is.
 From top to bottom:
-Burner phone with charger. I keep this as a back up to my normal phone. I'm not worried about the Gubmint listening in on me but like the layer of anonymity when buying/ selling things. 
-Little tan bag with some cash in it. Enough to buy a tank of gas and a few meals as well as to have cash to flash to buy a ride if I need to. "I will pay you a hundred bucks to take me in the general direction you are already going" type thing.
-Glock 19 with 2 spare mags loaded with Federal 115gr JHP ammo. It is in my trusty Bianchi 100 professional but there is a little Raven Vanguard 2 just in case some time I put it in the bag and forget the holster.
-IFAK. TQ, Israeli bandage, compressed gauze, nasal breathing tube and needle.
-Boo boo kit. Band aids, mole skin, athletic tape, liquid bandage, etc. Recently added some caffine pills and peptol bismol.
-Benchmade Bushcrafter knife. 
I ended up putting this knife back in. I think a full tang knife that can be pushed pretty hard has value that makes it's additional weight worthwhile.
-Piece of VS 17 panel and a whistle for signalling.
-Headlamp and extra batteries.
-Nalgene bottle and stainless nesting cup.
-Compass, map, protractor, notecards and pencils
-Sawyer water filter.
 -TP and spare socks. Not real sure why they share a bag.
-Nomex flight gloves.
-Fire kit. Lighter, matches and a couple little candles.
-Food. A couple things of tuna, some peanut butter, a bag of M&M's, some instant coffee and 5 cliff bars.
-My Tactical Tailor Removable Operator Pack.
-ECWCS wind jacket
-Poncho with stakes and 550 cord.
-The woobie this photo is taken on is also part of the system.
Not shows
-A small bag of 550 cord I overlooked in the bottom of the bag.

 The bag fully loaded.


Of course no system is ever completely finished.
Things I need to add:
-A larger (smaller scale so bigger coverage) map
-A couple freeze dried meals to beef up the calorie count a bit.

 Things I am considering doing:
-Swapping out the woobie for a thermal/ casualty blanket at least for the summer. This would save some weight and considerable bulk.

Things I would like to do but have not yet funded.
-Titanium cup
-Snugpack jungle blanket. Smaller and a bit lighter than the woobie and I suspect warmer.
-Potentially a lighter knife that is still full tang.

On an unrelated note out advertiser Lucky Gunner has Glock 23 magazines on sale for $22.95 instead of the usual 28-30. Glock mags practically never go on sale so if you have a G23 jump on this deal.

So anyway that is my bag. I am looking forward to hearing your thoughts.
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