Showing posts with label gun porn. Show all posts
Showing posts with label gun porn. Show all posts

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

How Many Guns Do You Really Need?

I was chatting with a co worker about carry handguns and my upcoming purchase of well, something or another, and this topic came up. He asked myself and another guy (both gun owners, the question guy has a pretty good collection of a couple ar's, a few pistols, a shotgun or two, a .308 bolt gun and some other stuff. The second guy has a Glock 17, a .45 and a Sig 556.) how many guns we feel like we really need to have all the realistic bases covered.

They both laid out what they thought. I can't recall exactly what each said but both said some sort of defensive rifle, a hunting rifle, a pistol and a shotgun. Each had other stuff on their list but I can't exactly remember.

Of course this does not consider redundancy or caches. I will realistically keep buying guns as long as the process does not become too much of a hassle and I can afford it. I would like to have a room like the one in The Matrix in my house, a few Sara Conner Terminator style caches and numerous operational caches well, everywhere I can find to put one. Maybe it is better to call this a discussion on how many types of guns I think you really need but anyway. Do note that I am not going to get bogged down into models of guns or even caliber unless it specifically applies and then I'll give more of a general range.

My list in the order they popped into my head (so not by priority):
-Rifle, scoped hunting type. Something fairly flat shooting with a decent punch for big game.
-Rifle, defensive. Something military pattern and mag fed; AK, AR, etc.
-Handgun, service. Good old house gun. Caliber 9mm/ .38 special or larger. My preference would be for a modern double stack semi auto.
-Handgun, concealed carry. Options vary wildly based on environment, body size and such. Caliber 9mm/ .38 special or larger though a .380 isn't terrible I guess.
-Shotgun, pump in 12 gauge due to commonality. If restricted to 1 barrel it would be a 20-21 in and accept chokes. Otherwise I would have 1x 18.5in riot barrel and a longer hunting barrel that took chokes.
-.22 rifle. Something that is rugged and is accurate enough to train and pot squirrels if needed.

That's it for the 'need' list and really it has some luxury with two rifles as well as a dedicated CCW pistol.

Now for the 'nice to have' list:
-Handgun, .22lr. For training and pest erradication.
-Handgun, tiny. I'm talking Beretta .22/.25, NAA .22 revolver, etc. Arguably the difference between the CCW pistol and the tiny one can be split. I know a couple guys who have full sized handguns and little .380's they carry around most of the time and all things considered that's not a bad setup.

So my 'must have' list is 3 rifles, 2 handguns and a shotgun. The 'nice to have' list adds two more handguns.

What is your 'must have' list? What is your 'nice to have' list.

Friday, August 1, 2014

Do I Need an Assault Rifle?

Do I Need an Assault Rifle? is an interesting thread I stumbled into on Survivalist Boards. The question asked was:
Hello I'm new to the forum and would like some input. as of now this is my arms list; Mosin Nagant
Mosberg 500 with scoped rifled barrel and 20 in smooth bore
Nylon 66, 22lr autoloader
RIA 1911 45acp
taurs ultralight .38 stubnose
22lr/mag single action revolver
My question is would it be best to save for an "assaault" rifle or put that 500-1000 bucks towards other preparations. I live in a very rural area, nearest town is 8 miles away with a population of less then 2000?

The comments to the post ranged from, and I am being slightly satirical here, "You don't need an Assault Rifle the Mosin Nagant is the best rifle ever" to "You must have an AK/ AR/ PTR-91 or you will die tomorrow." In between those two extremes a range of reasonable points were made.

Note the term "assault rifle" is used where 'magazine fed military pattern rifle such as an AK or AR' might have been more accurate. 

My thoughts:

I really wish this guy gave more information about his overall level of preps, general income and the specific type(s) of situations that primarily concern him. That really would have let me make a much more informed answer and frame this discussion better. From some comments and the general trend of the discussion it seems this guy has made some good effort towards the initial stages of preparedness. Moving further on.

I do not think "Do I need an assault rifle" is the right question to ask. The questions I would as are
1) Based on my overall level of preparedness (which I would explain in broad strokes) should I purchase a military pattern rifle now or should I purchase X, Y, Z instead and get a rifle in 6 months or a year?

2) Based on X scenario is a military pattern rifle a prudent purchase?

Beyond this individuals scenario to the broad question. Two mutually opposing and equally valid points govern my thinking here. First for the vast majority of  realistic civilian defensive situations as well as gathering protein sources you do not need a military pattern rifle. I do genuinely believe a modern, relatively compact military pattern rifle is the absolute best CQB and defensive option available today. However situations where a guy packing an AR makes it when he would not have using some sort of a riot shotgun are few and far between.

In a wide variety of realistic situations, even pretty ugly ones I would feel fine being armed with a MILSURP or sporting bolt gun and or a good ole 30-30, a pump shotgun, a .22 rifle and a handgun or two. I was smack in the middle of the LA Riots, Katrina or Rita [ are arguably the ugliest situations to occur in the US since Japan invaded the Aleutians and bombed Hawaii in WW2] with those guns I would feel reasonably, if not optimally, well armed.

That being said......

The standard for modern personal combat weapons is a modern military pattern self loading rifle. This is for a really valid reason. Simply put the capacity of these weapons to put rapid accurate fire onto targets and sustain that fire through a fight is not paralleled by shotguns or bolt/ lever rifles.

Take any realistic or semi realistic defensive scenario (El Presidente, 2 rounds per target x 3 targets, whatever) and an AR/ AK/ Mini 14/ etc will smoke a Mosin, 30-30 or lever gun stone cold. If you want to point out the best bolt gun shooter or whatever there is some guy in the AMU who would crush him.

The way I look at it if fighting a person (or more) armed with modern rifles I face a serious disadvantage being armed with anything less. If I am fighting people less well armed (likely) then I have an advantage which is excellent. Basically you don't NEED a fighting rifle unless you do at which point you really need it. People worried about particularly ugly situations would be very well advised to have a modern fighting rifle in their collection in case it is needed.

To the question of timing.

I think a persons preparations should generally move forward in a balanced manner. Put energy into different areas a bit at a time proportionately. Off the top of my head it might look something like this:

1 week/ black out/ storm- Food and water, some emergency lighting plans, a radio, some spare batteries, a basic kit for your vehicle. Weapons- whatever you have with a few boxes of ammo. If you had no guns I'd say a pistol that works for carry and house use plus a pump shotgun would work fine.

2 week bad storm/ black out- Same as the first but more consumables.

6 week regional disaster- Food for 6 weeks for everyone in your family with some overage for guests or helping others, water and the ability to purify and store more water. Hygiene stuff, clothes, batteries, maybe some local Motorola type radios. A real plan to mitigate the local climate ie cold in the north and hot in the south. Weapons- A pistol and a shotgun would get you by but I would want more like 300 rounds per weapon. I would feel a whole lot better if I had a rifle with about 300 rounds and a .22 with 1k of ammo. At this point consider some ammo for helping friends and neighbors. Lots of folks have a pistol, shotgun or hunting rifle but only a partial box or maybe two of ammo. At this point I would stock up on calibers I am vested in that I know or reasonably expect neighbors have.

This is where regional preferences and local considerations matter. .22lr and 12 gauge are common everywhere.  30-30 is common especially in the dense eastern and southern woods, distance guns like .300 win mag are common in the wide open west and .44 mag is common in bear country.

3 months- At this point things are going really bad. A regional disaster is totally hosed or there is a wider scale one. Obviously you need more consumables and in this time frame stuff is going to start to wear out. Repair parts, a serious plan for cooking food over the long term, etc all need to come into play here. As to weapons and ammo I'd say this is the first point where I'd really be adamant about a military pattern rifle, a dozen mags, a war belt or chest rig, a couple cases of ammo and some spare parts are really necessary.

 [Note: I am working under the assumption people are choosing a rifle that is reasonable for their situation which they can afford to purchase ancillary parts such as mags and ammo for. A family man who makes 35k a year cannot afford a SCAR-H with a Night Force scope, a silencer and an IR laser. If that guy can somehow swing it that rifle will be a curse not a blessing as he is almost surely shorting his family and preps. He needs to be realistic and get a good middle of the road AK like a Yugo PAP or basic but not junk AR like an S&W M&P, Bushmaster or DPMS. Working forward I will presume people apply common sense and select a gun that fits their economic and life situation.]

I would also want a rifle that could 'reach out and touch someone.'

Honestly I do not see this as a really logical milestone because IMO if things aren't fixed in the broad 6 week range we'll get to the point where Humpty Dumpty cannot be put back together again. I include it as a mile marker on consumables more than anything.

6 months- Same

12 months- You get the idea.

So unless I already owned one or had a big desire to buy one earlier based on this off the cuff methodology about the time I was working to progress from 6 weeks of preparedness to 3 months I would look towards purchasing a modern  military pattern rifle.

Well those are my thought on that. What do you think?





Friday, June 27, 2014

Bolt Action Rifles for Survivalists and Patriots

The discussion of bolt guns can really go in 3 directions.

The first is your old surplus guns and their use as a combat weapon. We discussed this in Part 4 of my Basic Firearms series (rifles). They did win (and lose) both world wars but they were also fighting against other bolt action rifles. The biggest benefits of these rifles are low cost of ownership (really just the Mosin Nagant) and widespread legality. If you can only scrape up $200 for a rifle and a bit more money over the next few months for ammo get yourself a Mosin and a few spam cans of 7.62x54R ammo. I have a lot more respect for the preparation and common sense of a person who rocks an old bolt gun because it is what they can afford than one who has a half built AR lower in the closet or an envelope that says PTR-91 with $300 inside. Our friend Hermit talked more about MILSURP Bolt Action Rifles some time ago. His thoughts, and my emphasis to stock ammo DEEP in preparation for supplies to dry up due to bans and consumption are both still equally valid.

The next area is as sporting and recreational firearms. Not much to say here. Get a gun in the right caliber, preferably a common one like .308 and rock on.

The last caliber is as a 'precision rifle'. I consider there to be a whole lot of overlap between this and the previously mentioned category of sporting and recreation. In fact I would seriously consider lumping them together entirely though part of this posts purpose is to facilitate a specific conversation.

The survivalist and 'patriot' goal to have a rifle that can really reach out and touch someone is valid. It bring a significant capability to a person or group. However we are guilty of a couple omissions on the topic.

The first is that we fail to define precision in a meaningful way. 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.

One could note that 2MOA is not amazing accuracy. One could further note that some modern rifles such as the Savage 10/11 [Savages stupidity of model numbering is out of control. They basically make a bunch of variations of one rifle with all sorts of different model numbers and names. They need to unscrew themselves and standardize to the Savage Model 110, Savage Model 110 Tactical, Savage 110 Long Range, etc all. Stop the madness.] are capable of sub MOA accuracy right out of the box.

I say 2MOA because I got to thinking about what, personally, I would want out of a 'precision rifle'.

Personally if a rifle is capable of head shots at 200m and bodies out to 600 with high consistency and the ability to penetrate some moderate cover (the only thing that absolutely knocks a good AR out of it, though wind's impact on the light bullet is problematic too.) is what I want.

A significant part of my apathy about absolute mechanical precision is the realization that 1) Most guns are more accurate than the person shooting them. Honestly I cannot out shoot a 2MOA rifle so no point in paying for Accuracy International or Steyr when a used Savage 111 will do and 2) Aside from the shooter accuracy issues in mechanically sound firearms being used reasonably for their make/ model/ chambering come from ammo and the lack of sufficient optics to harness the guns accuracy.

It is possible that a Military Surplus rifle could be used in this context. During WWII the standard sniper rifle was the countries standard bolt gun with a fixed power optic and maybe better ammo like 7.62x54R 7N1 sniper. These guns worked well within a semi reasonable concept of use. The real maker would be accuracy. If you happen to have a rifle with sufficient accuracy one could consider options for upgrading sights/ optics and utilizing it in a precision role. On the other hand some of these rifles, due to age and shoddy servicing/ rebuilds ain't what they used to be (or never where). You could easily spend enough cash to buy a new Remington 700 SPS trying to turn a 4 MOA milsurp rifle into a 1-2 MOA precision rifle and still not be successful. If your rifle is shooting 3+ MOA with decent ammo just save the trouble and enjoy it for the collectible fun gun it is.

So often folks will fail to put money into an optic and ammunition. They'll buy a good rifle, slap a the cheapest high power magnification scope Wally World has on it, buy the cheapest ammo and are surprised when their good rifle groups like OO Buck at 10 yards.

Presuming a mechanically serviceable bolt action rifle in a reasonable chambering it is good ammo that will let the rifle work up to it's potential and a good optic that will let the shooter work up to theirs. While Wolf .308 is great for a day plinking at the range it is not going to perform like a 168gr Remington Premier Sierra Match King BTHP. Also just about everyone will shoot a rifle with a good scope better than a cheap one.

If given $650 to build a rifle I'd rather have a $250 used rifle with a $400 scope and rings then the opposite.

Personally unless you are seeking a very high level of close range precision (like shoot them in the eye not the head) or really want to reach out past 600m without slipping from minute of man to minute of SUV 'area fire' AND HAVE THE SKILLS TO HARNESS THE EQUIPMENTS CAPABILITY; I see no reason why most standard big game bolt action rifles cannot fill the 'precision role' in a survivalist or 'patriot' battery. A $2k Steyr is great, don't get me wrong I would love an SSG but a $400 Savage or even a $200 Husqvuarna can probably meet all the necessary requirements.

Furthermore if the goal is really to reach way out you probably need to shift calibers to 300 win mag, .338 Lapua or .50BMG.

Anyway that is what's floating around my head today.

What are your thoughts?

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Rethinking Bolt Gun; Maybe AR Pistol and Single Stack Compact Auto?

So I have been planning to buy a bolt action .308 for awhile but well I haven't for no particular reason I could identify. Could go get a Savage Hog Hunter and 500 rounds of 7.62 ammo tomorrow, the money is sitting in the bank.

I have had three realizations:
1) My planned concept of use for a bolt action .308 is largely nullified by living in Louisiana. Without intentionally gaming a scenario (train tracks, etc) the odds of finding a shot I need to take that my AR can't make is pretty slim.I could definitely hunt deer down here with rifles already on inventory.
2) In terms of stuff that could potentially become scarce/ be targeted prior to 2016 I am not at all worried about bolt action hunting type rifles.

The other guns on my mid term horizon are an AR Pistol and some sort of very concealable single stack auto.

3) I am finding myself looking for a more shootable (Than the J frame that I am seriously considering selling. I just do not shoot it very well. Sad face.) and quick to reload handgun I will carry down here. Some sort of single stack auto in either .380 or 9mm. Logically a 9mm has benefits but I really, really want a Walther PPK. The .380 is a bit diminutive and adds to my logistical train but they are small, super cool and I can confidently engage targets with them far better than my little J frame.

I am going to sleep on it but think I want to get a PPK and start saving hard for an AR pistol. That will probably bump the bolt gun almost a year.

Thoughts?

Saturday, February 1, 2014

Project 870 Almost Complete!!!

This is where it all started. A Remington 870 Police Magnum wearing express furniture. Best I can tell this gun pulled Cruiser duty for the Kentucky state Police, was sold probably through Bud K then ended up in the Desert. That is where it ended up being saved from a life of neglect and generally not being owned by yours truly.

I was pretty annoyed with the guy that day. Drive for a ways to meet him and it turns out he was not entirely honest about the guns condition. Ended up leaving with the gun and a couple more 20's than I planned. A combination of cruiser duty and lack of maintenance in that guys care left the finish in terrible shape. It looks just fine at 15 feet but up close you can see significant discoloration and oxidization. The gun will almost surely rust if not slathered in oil. So after test firing it I kept the gun slathered in oil for awhile.

I thought about getting it professionally Keracoted or something. However the cost of that PLUS what I wanted to do to the gun was slightly prohibitive. Just more than I wanted to spend.

Once I got down here I wanted to get this project done so it could be our home defense long gun. The reason for that is largely legal in nature. Guns are common all over the South and non hippie parts of the West. However in particular shotguns are very common in Louisiana. The combination of duck hunting as well as short engagement ranges due to line of site for all game make them particularly handy guns down here. If I have to shoot somebody I would prefer to do it with a gun that is the same or very similar to ones in the prosecutor, judge and juries safe/ cabinet/ closet.

While I prefer an AR of the M4 flavor for close up work this advantage to the shotgun is considerable. Also while I like the M4 better a short barreled pump shotgun is amply capable of any home defense long gun task. There is the added benefit that if something happens I am, at least temporarily, losing a shotgun package worth $500 not an AR that all said and done I probably have 2k into.

Another consideration is that I am far more willing to carry said $500 shotgun as a "truck gun" than a semi automatic rifle. Even if it's an AR/ AK/ FAL you got a great deal on back when those were available it is still important to consider replacement cost. The pump gun is about the bar of value I am willing to risk potential theft of on a trip during normal times.

So my philosophy of use for this project is a home defense shotgun that can also serve as a 'truck gun'. I want to use quality components and do it right but budget is a consideration. First as Alexander Wolfe noted if you get much above the $600 range you are pushing hard on decent entry level AR-15's. Of course those would need ancillary gear like a sling, mags and lights too so upping it to $800 is probably more realistic.

Depending on your budget it is entirely possible to make a $2,500+ fighting shotgun. We are a consumerist society and there is nothing wrong with that. However as American Mercenary noted you can pay Ferrari money for a Fiat in projects or gun builds.

In my mind one of the biggest benefits of the pump shotgun is that they are realistically affordable for anybody but homeless drug addicts. I'm not saying everybody can afford to spend $300ish on a used Remington 870/ Mossberg 500 today but with a little planning and some saving they can afford one in a reasonable amount of time.

We could have a hearty discussion about the benefits of both Rem and Moss platforms. Both are very rugged. The plane Jane Mossberg 500's and their off brand Maverick 88's are cheaper than Remingtons so they offer more value. Then again you have a lot more parts and accessory support with the Remington. I'll close this phase of the discussion by saying they are both fine. Pick one type and buy 10 of them.

As I got to dreaming/ window shopping for this project TEOTWAWKI Blog's excellent Project 590A1. Alexander Wolfe does a great job on research and testing to find the best gear and setup for a particular gun. I like to take all that information and shamelessly steal it; just like for the S&W 642.

So anyway I wanted to get this done in 2014. Running the math if I did the finish myself it wouldn't really cost that much money. Thankfully 'H' recommended Alumahyde II vs plain old spray paint. So I figured out my plan. Some money came in and I ordered the stuff. It showed up in a few days.
The biggest piece of this project was the refinishing for sure. Thankfully Brownells has a series of videos 1, 2, 3, etc. After some reading it seems that preparation is at least as important as the spraying.

First I disassembled the gun. Since I was putting on a sling mount I had to take the stock off anyway so I just did it then instead of covering up the stock with tape and a plastic bag or something.
I cleaned the gun and degreased it. Since I'd been using the 'wetter the better' theory of gun maintenance that took some doing.


Next I used masking tape to cover up the parts I didn't want to paint. No pics of this but I covered the trigger guard and the front sight as well as both ends of the barrel. Filled the receiver with used paper towels from the cleaning then taped them into place.
It was too cold to paint in the garage but since I had the place to myself there were options. It was also a happy accident that I had a bunch of scrap carpet lying around. Laid 2 big pieces down on the kitchen floor (the easiest to clean worst case) as a ground cloth. Brought in a lawn/ patio chair that already had a bit of paint on it from another project to lean the pieces on.

I did the sling mount so it would match.

Then I painted. Overall it went pretty well. The only real sad face was a run on the barrel I foolishly tried to wipe off with a paper towel. It smeared and was really unattractive.
I tried painting over it but that didn't work. Ended up just sanding that part down and repainting. That time went better. At least enough so that I decided not to try my luck messing with it anymore.

This brings us to a point of discussion. I simply was not in a hurry to put the amount of cash into this gun to get it professionally refinished. That meant doing it myself. Do it yourself projects well, have do it yourself results. I'd say the shotgun looks fine but you will not mistake it for being professionally finished. Honestly I am OK with this. After some deliberation on the matter I figured worst case if I hate the paint job I can get it redone professionally later or try again myself. The advantage of destroying a gun's original finish (or getting one that is rough anyway) is that you can't do it twice. Sort of like murder after the first one the rest are free. 

I let the parts dry overnight then put it back together. In doing so I installed the GG&G sling mount and Elzetta light mount with a streamlight light I was using as my handheld tactical type light. Got to replace that now I guess.

After some consideration I decided to replace the old generic 5 shot neoprene shotshell holder with an Essetac card. Just pulled it off, slapped some velcro tape on and then a card on top. Not 100% how durable the velcro I got from the hardware store will be. Worst case I'll order a bigger heavier duty piece later if needed.
When I went to put a card on the side of the receiver I noticed the standard 870 Express forend goes too far back onto the receiver for a card to fit. That led to a Bleg on where to find another oneCommander Zero, the great American survivalist he is had a spare black plastic one lying around. He sent it my way along with a few other goodies gratis. So sometime in the near future I'll be swapping that out and hopefully getting the sidesaddle card put on. I really want both because there is a decent chance if I grab this gun it'll be 3am and I'll be wearing running shorts so all the rounds I'll have will be on the gun. Sure it sits by my cobbled together shotgun fighting load, which I will discuss in a future post but I might not have time for that so more rounds on the gun the better.

I took it out for a quick test fire to make sure it still goes bang. It still does. So now it is loaded up and in the Sentry Safe Home Defender with the Glock.

Pleased to say that Project 870 is finally done or at least within spitting distance of done after the forend swap and sidesaddle card installation. Total expenditure was roughly $500. Would like to get an SOE shotgun micro rig to go with it but am not in any particular hurry to do so. As I get a bit more experience with the different new pieces I may write about them individually.

Thoughts?

Edited to include: I went to swap out the forend this afternoon. Before taking off the Essetac light mount, the extension and barrel I decided on a lark to lay the new plastic forend Zero sent me on top of the old one. They look identical in size. So now I'm looking at just taking a finish saw to the wood forend to cut it down. Worst case on that the 870 Express wood furniture is dirt cheap so if I ruin it that is fine. Thanks to Zero I'd have a functional forend for the duration. It's either that or just buy a shorty plastic forend like the Magpul, Hogue or whatever. Do have a couple ebay auctions pending for dirty cheap 870P furniture but I'm not too optimistic about any of them. Going to sleep on it before doing anything I cannot take back. So finishing this project is slightly stalled. Story of my life.

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Sunday, January 12, 2014

The Most Awesome Gun Video Ever!!!!


There are lots of people in the gun community who do great things and share their knowledge/ promote their training/ products on youtube. However it is good to laugh at ourselves as a community and not take things too seriously. Enter this video.

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Bug Out Vs Operational Pack Out and Survival Gun Discussion With American Mercenary

Packing for an Operation vs Packing to Bug Out
Interesting reading. In my mind a bug out is just a different type of operation with a more nebulous end time and few, if any enablers.

Inevitably the discussion went to firearms. Personally my "go guns" are the same guns I would take in a bug out situation though if going by vehicle I would beef it up to our survival guns by including my Ruger 10/22 and a Remington 870. The latter 2 guns are included in the heavy bug out to round out a basic firearms battery and since they are good food gathering weapons.

In a predominantly nonviolent wilderness based scenario I'd be rocking a .22 pistol if it was planned or a Glock 9 if unplanned and a pump 12 gauge as wilderness walk out guns. Those guns give a lot of options in gathering food and could protect me from dangerous game.

Back to the discussion of more man portable options American Mercenary returned with
Using a .22lr adapter as part of your fighting/ bug out gear
One of the unique attributes of the AR is that it's barrel is compatible with .22 lr ammo. Some time ago a .22lr adapter was made for the Military eventually followed by several civilian models. I have one of them. I would say it is sufficiently accurate, if just marginally, to serve as a backup way to procure game. Given that an adapter, a mag and a couple hundred rounds of CCI stingers would probably fit in a 16 ounce "Tall Boy" can I think that is a huge ability for an individual who needs to carry an AR-15 but wants some food gathering capability. With a simple swap of the bolt and magazine you can hunt with .22lr and save the 5.56 for bigger game.

The topic of .22lr dedicated upper's came up also. These are inevitably more accurate than the bolt swap kit but I can't see a reason to carry one around. It's 75% of the hassle of carrying a second rifle without it being a functional rifle. I'd rather have a second .22 rifle if I was going this way.

 .22lr pistols came up which I think has a lot of promise. They are of course harder to shoot well than rifles but are also less bulky. That being said .22 pistols can be plenty accurate. A friend and I went shooting once. He brought along his Father's .22 pistol just for fun. It was a bull barreled stainless Ruger with an el cheapo red dot on it. We were able to keep golf balls moving out to 20 yards or so with it easily. I'd say it would be an excellent squirrel gun.

I mind the idea of swapping a centerfire pistol for a .22 much more palatable than sacrificing a fighting rifle. Honestly for a combatant WITH A RIFLE a pistol is just icing on the cake anyway.

So those are my thoughts on that.

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Long Gun Case Bleg

So I'm looking at getting a gun case. Specifically a case that will hold 2 long guns or a long gun plus a pistol with some ancillary stuff. It will need to be able to fly (pass TSA standards) and keep guns protected in reasonable storage conditions (dry and fairly cool place) for a reasonably long time. Cost is a consideration but not the primary driver. I would rather spend a bit more and have things be G2G then save a few bucks and have my guns get beat up or have corrosion issues.

My gut says pelican. My research says the 1750 is the case that will suit my needs best.

What do you all have? What do you suggest? I am certainly open to other options provided they fit the above listed criteria.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Justifying New Gun Purchases


 There are some valid points here. Assuming a gun is purchased at a reasonable price and sold in roughly comparable condition in a non fire sale 'got to sell it today' way they hold their value quite well. Do however note there are a few qualifiers there.

 I think this decision is a lot easier for gun enthusiasts/ tacticly minded type folks than survivalists or their toned down better dressed cousins 'preppers'. A shooter can buy the cool new gun they want and assuming it's not a financially ruinous move (buying a SCAR-H on a credit card, etc) then rock on. A survivalist on the other hand has different stuff to look at. It's not just 'do I need this gun' or even 'do I want this gun' anymore.

For a survivalist it's more like 'Do I have enough ammo for the guns I own now?' All the guns in the world are useless without ammo. From a utilitarian survivalism perspective a pair of good fighting rifles or even better one per family member of either something AR-15 based or AK-47's then lots of ammo is probably the right answer. (If your pockets are deep I guess .308's are fine) Stocking deep on 5.56 or 7.62x39 to keep the guns you own fed is more important than buying a SCAR/ Steyr-Aug/FN-2000 for fun.

Even aside from ammo should that money be going into food or fuel or a Berkey water filter, or a Titan Ready Water barrel rack system to hold a couple hundred gallons of water or training to use the guns you have?

In short for survivalists you cannot have too many guns but can certainly short yourself elsewhere to get a new toy.

Thursday, September 26, 2013

What's Your Totally Over The Top John Rourke 'The Survivalist' Dream Gun Setup?

Today I was window shopping for revolvers and got to thinking about our favorite totally over the top survivalist John Rourke who carried a pair of stainless Detonics Combat Master .45's, a 6" Metalified Colt Python, a Colt .357 Law Man, a Colt CAR-15 and kept a Steyr SSG handy for long shots. I think carrying 4 pistols is pretty far over the top by any standards and it is convenient that he somehow always has a place to keep the Steyr so it's handy and isn't left behind while fighting a brigade of zombie rapists or something. Anyway I got to thinking about what my ridiculously over the top setup would be given the options available today. Here is what I came up with.

Pistols:
A pair of Glocks 19 and 17 respectively threaded for suppressors
Ruger SP101 .357 2.5in stainless
6" Ruger GP100 stainless

Mods: The Glocks would have 3.5lb connectors, stainless steel guide rods and suppressor height night sights. The G17 would have a surefire tac light. The wheelguns would have their triggers and actions tuned by some ridiculously expensive Revolver guru to make them super awesome.

Rifles:
Bravo Company 14.5in mid length AR-15with a Shmidt and Bender 1-8 short dot
Knight SASS M110 7.62 rifle system with all it's sweet ancillary stuff

Mods: The BCM rifle would have a Giselle trigger, a surefire light, a surefire muzzle device that fits supressor. Both would have BCM Gunfighter charging handles and DBAL I2 IR lasers. 

Bonus:
.22lr conversion kit for AR and another for a Glock.

What would be your John Rourke 'The Survivalist' Gun Setup? Throw out cost, weight and reality. Dream and have some fun.

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Revolver Discussion Revisited

I wrote a post about revolvers before realizing that it said the same thing as A Discusion of Revolvers from a bit more than a year ago. So instead of finishing the new post I just linked to the old one. Commander Zero's points are also valid. Since writing the previous post I spent a fair bit of time carrying a J frame in the blast furnace that is Arizona and discussed it here: Living with my J Frame and Living with my J Frame 2 .

Thoughts on revolvers for practical use?


Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Reader Questions: Getting into the AR-15 Game

Hey I am in the market for a rifle chambered in 556 preferrably semi-auto. I have been rocking the an AK variant for several years but would like to increase my range performance and enter a new tier of weapon performance. Ive been scouring armslist in Washington and there seems to be quite a bit of options out there. Would you recommend purchasing new or looking for quality used? Any info or tips will help! I am new to the AR game.
-G

Ryan here. As I see it we can break this down to 2 different questions.
1) Buying new vs used.
2) My thoughts on different types of AR-15's currently on the market. This will be broken down further to general configuration and make/ manufacturer. I will answer them in order.

New Guns- There are pro's and con's to buying guns new. The biggest advantage is that you can get exactly what you want. That is followed by the gun being new with which means there are fewer potential issues and manufacturer support for ones that do pop up. Lastly if you are a person who cares about getting a gun without any scratches, dings, wear marks, etc this is the best option.

The con's of buying new are the ATF form 4473 which some have called defacto registration through record keeping happens. Depending on where you stand with private party firearms that may not be an issue or could be a deal maker. Also you are going to pay retail price and tax.

Used Guns- Of course there are pro's and con's here also. For the sake of simplicity I am going to talk about used gun sales from private party's not via a shop. The biggest pro in my opinion is the lack of paperwork. A private party gun or two might be real handy some day. The second is that is the best place to find deals. This works best for the seller's also. Instead of selling a gun to a shop for $300 which they will immediately put on the shelf for $400 we can split the difference at $340 and both win. 

It is worth noting here that most gun owners do not shoot much so their weapons have very low round counts. They get a gun, test fire it with a couple mags then put it into the closet/ safe. It stays there till they decide on something else or run into money trouble. So you're more likely to face a few scratches and nicks from handling than actual wear on the parts that matter.

The biggest downside of used guns is the difficulty to find what you want. Instead of a local shop having it or ordering it you need to find an individual who owns one that wants to sell it. If you are looking for a Glock 17 or a Remington 870 that's not a big deal but if you want a Wizzbanger 900 X2L3 in Multicam or a limited edition 2 tone Sig .357 with night sights and short run factory grips it can be a big problem. 

The next biggest downside is guns hold their value really well. Part of it is that some folks pay a premium for non papered guns which drives up the marker. I definitely saw this phenomena in Arizona. In any case expect to pay more like 85-95% of the new price for a like new gun while other items tend to be in the 60-75% range. Of course guns do occasionally pop up cheaper when somebody needs cash fast but those cannot be defended on. 

The last downside is that the gun could have issues or be stolen/ linked to a crime. Some people cobble together and clean messed up guns then sell them used to unload the problem onto another person. [Don't be that guy, there is a special place in hell for these scumbags.] Also some guns were stolen previously or whatever. Even if you buy from a good person the guy who had that gun 10 years ago may have made a shady deal or whatever. A guy I know had a pistol taken by the cops because it was stolen a long time ago. Both of these happen rarely but they do happen.

To roll up this question. If you are not patient or want a really specific gun new is probably the way to go. On the other hand if a paperless gun matters to you that is the way to go. Occasionally a person who has cash handy can get some real deals in used guns.

As to different configurations as well as makes/ models of AR-15's. For a general use type rifle I favor a 14.5inch barrel of standard weight on a flat top AR with an adjustable butt stock. I favor chrome lined barrels and everything as mil spec as possible. As to rails I'd only bother with them if you plan to mount enough stuff to justify it. [Honestly in substantive ways I don't see myself varying from this much unless I build a pistol. You could go with a 20" barrel and a fixed stock to make it a SDM type gun but honestly for that role I'd probably get a .308.] 


To manufacturers. I'll break this down in 2 ways. We will talk guns by approximate price range and then I'll talk what of this is based on personal experiences and what is a general consensus of others. Please note that my discussion of manufacturers is not all encompassing. Part of the limitation is that I'm trying to stick as much as possible to stuff I know and part is due to time/ length limitations. Not saying those manufacturers are good or bad but there is only so much time in the day. Please don't get all butt hurt if I do not mention your favorite brand; let's stick to the big picture here.

First we will talk about what I would consider on the more expensive side. Probably closer to "a good job and some spare cash" than "assistant night manager with a young family barely getting by" territory. In this range you get professional grade guns. I hesitate to say an exact price but we are probably talking $1,100ish on the bottom end up to around 2k. The difference will be brand as well as specific features/ variants, obviously a gun with a $250 rail will cost more than an otherwise identical one with $40 hand guards.

Manufacturers in this price range include Colt, Knight Armament, Daniels Defense, LMT and Bravo Company. I have personal experience with Colt's at work and own a Bravo Company rifle that I love. John Mosby is running an LMT. Knight stuff I have anecdotal experiences with at work. DD is just a great company.

These are just great guns that can be used really hard. One can reasonably expect a genuine go to war gun right out of the box. The downside is that nothing is free. To some degree a customer is paying for better design, materials and workmanship which is worthwhile. Also to some degree they are paying for a name as well as the cool guy's they pay for endorsements. If you can afford the tab one of these rifles will suit you well. On the other hand if this sort of rifle is our of your reach do not despair as there are other options.

The second category of rifles I am going to talk about are closer to the "assistant night manager with a young family barely getting by" territory. This isn't ARF so I won't bash folks who can not or simply will not spend a mortgage payment or two on a rifle. The manufacturers in this category include Bushmaster, Olympic Arms, DPMS which I have varying degrees of personal experience with. Depending on exactly where the lines are drawn basic models from Stag Arms and in Smith and Wesson M&P series could fall in here also. While exact prices are fuzzy I'd say $600-900ish is about the right range.

As a general rule these are fine rifles, perfectly suitable for all needs average or even not so average Joe has. Fit and finish are less than the fancy brands but that is OK. To be blunt these companies do produce more lemon's than the professional grade manufacturers. However for every lemon there are a bunch of guns that work just fine. On this one the upside and downside are pretty obvious. You get a gun that is affordable but may potentially have some issues.

Personally I think we should consider option #3 which is to order the parts you want (complete upper, BCG, etc all) and put it onto a lower receiver purchased via private party. This way you circumvent the difficulty of finding specific stuff via private party basically get whatever rifle you want without the 4473 hassle. If this option doesn't appeal to you....

I recommend that you buy a gently used professional grade AR-15 from a private party. 

As always reader input to this discussion is welcome.



Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Pairing Pistols For Field and CCW Needs

On my recent road trip the two pistols I chose to keep handy were a pair of Glock 9mm's, large and small. A friend of the blog Chris once described their "his and hers tactical/ carry setup" of subcompact and compact pistols. They chose .40 cal M&P's. The .40 S&W is a fine round (even ball ammo is pretty hot) though it can have issues in some pistols (like they blow up). In any case the point here is not to get into a cartridge or pistol debate but the idea. It could be Glock 9mm's which would be my preference but you could also do XD 45's or whatever.

The advantages of this setup are numerous. Familiarity is one. Common calibers between pistols is another. Most will take the same magazines from larger to smaller (though not visa versa). A guy with a pair of Glock 9mm's say a 19 and a 26 could buy one type of 9mm defensive ammo, and go heavy on Glock 17 mags with a few 26's to keep in the smaller gun for CC. Also (though I am not sure this is the case for all guns) just about every part except the barrel, frame and slide on a Glock 9mm (also .40) is the same. So it even makes streamlining spare parts easier.

For revolver fans I would go with a J framed .38/.357mag and a full sized 4" .357.  I would recommend for concealed carry the smaller revolver should probably be a lightweight type vs a small steel J that might as well be made of lead. A J frame in .357 magnum would be great but .38 special is sufficient. (Speaking of which here is 1k in .38 ammo for $420). Some would note a steel J will probably last longer but these little guns tend not to get much play anyway so for most the issue is negligible. An Airweight J frame like my 642 is an excellent CCW revolver.

For the full sized revolver I would strongly recommend a .357 magnum over a .38. The .38 is a fine round but .357 mag is a real stopper. Also if dangerous animals are a concern with the right load .357 mag is a solid bear killer (though not Grizzly or huge Alaskan bear's which are .44mag and up). The versatility of that setup would range from a great woods gun to concealed carry in town with plenty of plinking fun in the middle. An excellent setup for wheel gunners.

We could quibble makers and models all day long but there are numerous good options. As my finances become a bit more comfortable over the years Smith and Wesson revolvers are becoming the norm. However that's largely because Ruger's haven't been available PP when I was looking. For sheer ruggedness a Ruger SP101, though a brick to carry, and a GP100 are probably the way to go. In any case I would be careful with Taurus's and inclined to avoid other makers.

I'm not saying you absolutely need to have more than one pistol but it is certainly nice. The second gun buys you a lot of options. If the gear and ammo for them is compatible that's certainly a benefit. Worth thinking about beforehand so you do not end up with a Glock 9mm carry pistol and a Sig .40 for tactical stuff with nothing compatible between the two.

On an unrelated note.  The emphasis on large "tactical" type pistols in modern training for civilians sort of bothers me. Folks going to the range and doing classes with a full sized or almost full sized pistol that has a tac light, maybe a red dot and extended magazines. That is cool but most of those folks do not actually carry those guns around. Spending all your training time on a full sized handgun then carrying a .32 in your pocket which has half a box of ammo through it a decade ago is called missing the point. While banging out a bunch of rounds and doing cool guy stuff is satisfying folks need to put a significant portion of their pistol training time and resources into the pistol(s) they actually carry on a regular basis.

Anyway the point I'm getting at is to think a bit and try to choose a set of pistols that compliment each other to suit all of your needs while keeping an eye on simple logistics.



Sunday, August 4, 2013

RE: Why The AK-47?

12:13 said "Don't understand you. If you got trained with the AR and your abilities are in that gun. Why then chose something that you can pick up after exercising all the muscle memory whit the AR? I believe you said before that the AR is more precise and of course got longer range.
Are you contradicting yourself, like when you dump the 30-06 and chose the 30-30?"

Ryan here.  This comment on yesterday's post seemed worth discussing here in a broader venue. Also it will take enough time/ energy that depending on how the rest of the day's packing and cleaning goes it might just be the post. So here we go.

Maybe there is some confusion. I own both guns. We could debate the need or utility of that but it's where I am. This isn't a purchase and a lifestyle choice; it's choosing a sweatshirt from the closet instead of a fleece.

The primary reason I  chose an AK for this trip are it's compact nature due to the folding stock. It can go in a normal duffel bag ready to go. Granted an AR can be broken down and get a bit smaller but then it has to be reassembled to fire. That I could discretely slip it into a bag to take into a hotel is an appealing idea. The second reason is that it is a weapon I am far more willing to risk being stolen/ whatever than an AR. AK's have come up in price considerably over the last few years but I don't have much cash into this gun.

I am better with an AR but still sufficiently capable with an AK. Like the quote from Lord of War "It's so easy a child can use it, and they do."

 For the reasons listed above I chose an AK for this trip. The AR is better at distance. I do not think anyone would argue that point. My AK is a roughly 3 MOA gun. Not precision accuracy by any measure but shooting faces at 100 meters and chests well past 200 is sufficient for my needs. For this particular trip my need for a compact package is higher than my need for accuracy at 300 plus meters.

As to the 30'06 and 30-30. That is a much longer discussion. To sum it up. I owned rifles in both calibers then ended up selling both rifles in 30'06 for different reasons. Ultimately my plan is to shift our "precision" caliber to .308. Probably with a bolt gun next year some time. While the '06's left and have yet to be replaced with a .308 the 30-30 stayed around. Why the 30-30 is in the collection is something I'm not fully able to express. The cowboy assault rifle is unlikely to be targeted by any sort of ban and ammunition is widely available, that it is a non "evil black rifle" caliber is an advantage there.

Guess I'm not entirely sure how I am contradicting myself. Is it that I've talked about X being nice yet own Y? While I have fewer guns than the average Montana Sportsmen (26) the collection is pretty decent. Everything has advantages and disadvantages. Since I got into the writing fairly early my opinions have changed over time. Also invariably if you write about different gun type stuff often enough, for long enough, one thing will not match with some other thing.

So I hope that explains my thinking.

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Many Good Options

I've been thinking about different guns lately. Specifically AR's and AK's but we could extend that same line of thought to HK-91's, FN-FAL's, M1A's, the newer Mini 14's as well as Glocks, M&P's, Sigs etc all. Cost differences vary and various factors including logistical support should be considered. Also we need to look at current prices not historical ones, case in point AK and AR prices are a lot closer now then a few years ago.

They all have different good and bad points. Some have more parts availability than others. Sometimes you pay hundreds of dollars for a name. Some have superior ergonomics. Some are in more common calibers than others. Some are more modular than others. All of these matter to varying degrees for different people.

Back to the AR and AK for a minute. I think both of their cliche weaknesses, accuracy on the AK and reliability on the AR, have been greatly overstated. That is my fairly informed opinion from shooting a few AK's and a ton of AR's.

In terms of accuracy the AK's I have shot are 4 MOA guns. Not amazing but lets put that in perspective. That is the important part of a head at 100 meters and solid chest shots well past 200m. At about 300 it starts to slip from minute of man to minute of SUV but for most situations that is not a huge deal. Also the cartridge drops pretty fast around there anyway.

As to reliability the issues with the AR platform come from two places. First there was 'Nam when the myth that these rifles did not need to be cleaned was perpetuated for awhile. Second was the Battle of Wannat. During that battle those soldiers essentially used their selective fire M4's as suppressive fire weapons at close to cyclic rates for prolonged periods of time. I am not faulting them for that choice, they did what they had to do. The thing is these rifles are simply not made for that. To put it into perspective if you go cyclic mag after mag in any burst or automatic weapon it will fail at some point. The M4 is pretty reliable

The reliability requirement for the M4 is 600 Mean Rounds Between Stoppage (MRBS). The demonstrated current reliability is over 3600 MRBS as a result of our continuous improvement program.

If you keep an AR lubed they will shoot almost indefinitely.  I put lube on them to just short of the point where it will drip off. There just isn't a downside to it. Keep them lubed and occasionally give them a quick cleaning and you are good to go.

Moving forward.

I am more concerned about what people can do with the guns they have than with their choice to carry an AK and a Glock 9mm or an AR and an M&P or a PTR-91 and a .45. If everybody spent a bit more time training and a bit less on the internet arguing about guns they would be a lot more capable.


Thursday, June 20, 2013

Project AR Completion: AR-15 Rail Questions

So I'm looking for a free floating drop in rail to finally finish Project AR. Looking for a free floating drop in rail for a mid length AR with the existing standard front sight post. Do not like or need a full quad rail, in fact I prefer the ones with a full top rail where you can bolt (or otherwise attach) small sections of rail to fit needed accessories.

The first and most obvious answer is the Troy Delta Rail. Another option that came to my attention recently was the Samson Evolution, though installation while not a full on gunsmith task will be more problematic than the Troy. After watching the installation video for the Samson I am leaning hard towards the Troy.

If there are any other options that meet my rather complicated criteria (mid length, free floating, compatible with existing front sight post/ gas block, not a huge quad rail) please enlighten me. Also if you have first hand experience with either of the two models mentioned please share it with me.

Edited to include: Little problem. The Troy rail that would be prefect, though listed in their catalog and having a 'buy now' button, actually do not exist yet. They are currently being engineered.

-Ryan

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Quote of the Day

"Being as I am a self proclaimed gun expert......."
Yankee Marshal

Friday, June 14, 2013

Birdshot For Self Defense?


An interesting video on the use of 12 gauge birdshot for self defense. This video makes a pretty compelling argument that birdshot is adequate for close quarters type self defense. A several inch deep hole the size of a fist is nothing to sneer at. If you are only worried about close distances and penetration is a real concern this might be something to think about.

We could probably call 00 buck the standard in terms of defensive shotgun loads it's 9x .33 caliber pellets is definitely not something to sneer at. Personally I like #4 Buck Shot it typically has 27x .24 caliber pellets. I like #4 buck for two reasons. First it has a lot of pellets that are IMO still amply sufficient. More pellets means more wound channels. The reason I like this is that it increases the chances a pellet or pellets will hit something very important (vital organ or essential bone) stopping the threat as quickly as possible. Sure 00B's shot is larger with more penetration but there are fewer chances a pellet will hit that artery or bone and stop somebody. Personally I think any sort of 2 3/4 inch BUCK SHOT is a fine choice for self defense. Slugs work too if that is your thing. Right now the bag of shotgun shells by my gun are 00 buck, not the preferred #4 buck, just because when I was digging for shotgun ammo that was the first sort of buckshot I found.

I can not in good conscience endorse loading defensive shotguns with bird shot. The reason is twofold. A lot of really smart people tend to agree bird shot does not penetrate enough to be a good choice for a defensive load. Second and more significantly my concern is that we are turning a 35-40 meter gun into maybe a 10 meter gun. That it's your home defense shotgun which theoretically will not leave home is a fine idea. However when you get into a fight things happen. Both the enemy and Murphy have a role in deciding how fights go. All of a sudden you could be behind a tree shooting at some meth head with an SKS behind a big rock 30 meters away with a shotgun loaded with birdshot. Granted one doesn't want to fight anybody carrying a rifle using a shotgun but that same gun loaded with buck (maybe with some slugs onboard) can fight at that distance.

Anyway those are my thoughts on that.

Popular Posts