Showing posts with label modernsurvivalonline. Show all posts
Showing posts with label modernsurvivalonline. Show all posts

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Glad To Hear Rourke Listened About Emergency Funds

John Rourke raided his Emergency Fund recently. I'm glad he listened and set some money aside. While that's never fun it is the reason we set aside emergency funds. My thoughts on how he could reestablish it are based on what we have done in the past.

"Glad to hear the savings helped out! As to (re) funding the emergency fund.

What we do is consistently (probably 9/10) save a given amount each payday. For the sake of simplicity lets say it's $500. Say a hundred and fifty goes to retirement strait off the top which leaves us with $350. Say we save another $50 for some mid term goal leaving $300. We save up $300 a month till we reach whatever we consider comfortable for the emergency fund. After the emergency fund is topped off we start making extra payments on something, save for a car as one of them is perpetually getting old, etc all.

Say the furnace goes out or there is a significant unforeseen medical bill/ whatever. It comes out of the emergency fund. Then you go from saving that $300 for extra principal payments/ a car back into refunding the emergency fund.

Well that's my .02 cents on that."

My only note after reading this again is that the savings comes out FIRST. Get paid and before you do anything else transfer that to another account, get it in cash and put it away separately or whatever. If you wait till the last 2 days of the pay period (or whatever cycle you get money on) to save THERE WILL NEVER BE ANY MONEY. On the other hand if you pull it out first, the money will be there to set aside, then you just live on whatever is left according to the budget you use. This is called Paying Yourself First and is a pretty important concept in functional personal finances.

This is also a reminder that you are far more likely to need money right now than big buckets of wheat, arctic sleeping bags or cases of ammo.

Got Emergency Fund?



Monday, July 22, 2013

How Many Magazines Are Enough?

Modern Survival Online shared their thoughts on ammo and was nice enough to link to my recent post. They also mentioned magazines.Since I didn't address mags it seems to be worth touching on. I will share the numbers of magazines I consider sufficient as well as the thinking behind those numbers.

Core Defensive rifle-20
I stock AR-15 mags

Core Defensive pistol-10
I stock Glock 9mm magazines

Non core defensive rifle-14 magazines
Like mags for an AK that is just lying around

Non core defensive pistol-6 magazines

(These would be for a gun that is useful but not primary so you can get by with a few less.)

Various nonessential weapons- 4-6 magazines
Maybe for a baby Glock or some sort of .22. I am comfortable stocking these lower because they are either ancillary or for various oddball heirloom type guns.

These numbers are roughly 3 basic loads per weapon (strictly speaking that would be 21 rifle mags like these Troy Battle Mags and 9 pistol mags like Glock 17 mags but round numbers are nice). My thinking is as follows. Obviously the first set are to carry. The second set are to replace the first set if they are lost/ broken or wear out. The third set are for equipping friends, barter or trade. The allocations are not exact but that is sort of the thinking. It is worth saying these are minimums. Thirty to forty percent more is great, fifty percent more is even better and double is not totally crazy. Between Armageddon and such I wouldn't mind having a few spare mags cached here or there above the minimums.

How many mags do you think are enough?


Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Why the 50 Meter Zero?

Rourke linked to an excellent pictorial about ballistic trajectories from different zero's over at M4.com.

Let's look at the trajectory using a 25 meter zero.
If you look the bullet path is 8 inches high from roughly 125m to250m. This is a real problem. This is enough of a problem that folks will miss targets. In fact that is what happened.

My informal understanding of the development of the 50 meter zero is as follows. Dudes were missing Tango's in the 100-150 meter range which was pretty close to the max range guys found themselves fighting at in Iraq (yes there was that occasional long tail fight which was further but lets not get into the weeds). After some consideration, or quite frankly I'm not quite sure what, the SOF community began to transition to a 50 meter zero. This trickled to varying degrees into the conventional Infantry guys and the shooting community at large. That is how the 50 meter zero came about in my understanding. If anybody (John Mosby, K or Lizard Farmer come to mind) has a better understanding of that development through something other than reading on the interwebz I would be interested in hearing it.

So let us look at the 50 meter zero.
As you can see this zero is much flatter. From the muzzle out to 250 yards or so (varying slightly by barrel length, twist, etc) the bullet is at +/- 2 inches. This is what matters. Granted I might need to hold over a little bit at longer distances but inside 250m it's just muzzle on target, relax, squeeze trigger. Since the vast majority of military engagements happen well inside that envelope to me it is a very easy decision to make.

I use a 50m zero for my fighting rifle and recommend it to others. I do not think your choice of optic should affect the zero chosen. The 50m would be my choice for iron's, a red dot or a scope. It's pretty awesome on my Burris MTAC. Really the only reason I can see going with another zero would be a gun with a concept of use other than a fighting rifle. For a DM or varmit gun I might look at a 36 meter zero to keep it within 4" out to about 350 meters.

The way I personally execute a 50 meter zero is to just do a 25 meter zero then back out to 50 and adjust the point of impact down to be on at 50m. The reason I do this is that it's a lot easier to get onto paper at 25m saving ammo then back it out to 50m. I think it's faster and certainly saves ammo by starting closer to zero (due to distance). Suppose I could move the sights sufficiently then confirm but I've been lazy and redneck adjusted (fire a group, move the sights, repeat as needed till on target).

Anyway that is why my rifle is zeroed at 50 meters and I suggest you do the same. That is my thinking on that.

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Questioning Common Caliber Wisdom

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

As it relates to the current firearmagedon:

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

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

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

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

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

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




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