Go with the existing standard guards, or go Magpul…or go free-float tube, the costs accelerate. Whatever the case I want FDE. I tried my friend’s Magpul MOE SL hand-guards and they handle nicely with a bit of extra length – slimmer to grip and longer than these big old fat stogies. All my other AR’s have free-float hand-guards including the white Oak upper with the standard “look.” The Noveske just looks like a cheese-grater but it’s not, there are no sharp edges because they threw the Sasmson tube in a tank with pebbles, or media blasted-off the sharp corners. Anyhow, the fun continues!

Where for art thou Winchester ?

When is Winchester gonna start making AR’s? I want a gun with the famous Winchester script on the side, and not just another .30-30 Model 94. It’s time for a modern Model-16 as in “2016” – preferably in .308 Winchester caliber. C’mon man, get those end-mills rolling and cut out some aluminum receivers. And make the barrels too. And put the Horse and rider on the side – though to be modern it should probably be an iron-horse…so they would have to team up with Harley for cross-branding because you KNOW Honda would never endorse a firearm. Mitsubishi might, there was a time when THEY did that sort of thing…
UPDATE: Does FN have a “FN Mystery House”-?? Noooo, I don’t think so. Do they have any real “brand” recognition besides the SCAR train-wreck? Nooo,just sorta.
“Winchester” has so much more history and current PRESENCE than they can possibly hold in their little Belgian Hercule Poirot tea-cup finger. John Moses went to the Well in his last days and they (began) produced the Hi-Power – but only after he died, and then the rat-bastard Progressive Nazis took it.
Has Olin built any brand recognition besides some cool skis back in the 70’s that All The Cool-Kids Had (parent’s bought)? If that was even them (back then) – and especially not their current crop of Ferrari-driving Executive Board trust-fund baby nitwits? I don’t know, “Hey, nice turtleneck!” What a metaphor for the Euro-weenie sports industry…
What a supreme lack of vision and poncey-weenie leadership. They could ride that horse to Big Sales, but they must not want to — or more realistically the burden of Union Squatters is holding them back.

Happy Gunstuff

UPDATES: Various switcheroo and moderation for the hothouse flowers of political correctness: the #Idiorati&Ignorati:
After just twenty minutes at the show and a couple of interesting conversations with neighbors, I came across this for sale at the State of Jefferson table that called out my name. At first I didn’t even notice that it was a slick-side. Woot! Story: the Guy who built it switched to a 6.5 upper for deer hunting from his trail-bike. M4-feed-ramps and BCG included, with scope. The only identifying characteristic is the DoubleStar gas block. $375 out the door.
I’ll have to see what difference the shorter gas-system makes in regards to recoil impulse, since my other AR’s all have rifle or medium-length gas circuitry. Also I want to swap the black glacier-guards for FDE and maybe the new Magpul ones as the grip they provide is very large and round. IMG_0208x1000

Range Day New Neighbors

UPDATE: Pictures!
It was time to wring-out the Krag and the NATO Ishapore, and learn my local Club’s protocols and intricacies. Dan was the RO at the rifle-range and explained, “no rifles in cases.” It seems a while back too many hunters had showed up with cased, loaded weapons – and they did not exhibit good muzzle discipline handling them at the bench. So now the rule is bring them in singly and rack them.
My neighbors in the other lanes were Bud and Hunter, a grandfather-grandson duo who were prepping for hunt season with scoped, black-polymer stocked rifles, and Roy. Roy had an SKS, a Mosin, a Waffenamt-stamped 8mm Mauser, and a bull-barrel Ruger 10//22 – and he lives down my road in “a big old barn” as he called it. Hey Neighbor! People couldn’t be more friendly.
The max distance was 100-yards. The Krag struck the top of the 10-ring of the SR-1 target, and then gathered its shots around the left in the 8-9 ring-area, and then variously elsewhere on the left out to the 7-ring. Nothing to the right. I made adjustments but they stayed to the left. IMGP2326_x1000

Then I brought out the NATO Ishapore and fired on an old Washoe Range target from the last GBR, stapled-up sideways, and hit some in the 10-ring too. When I put on my shooting glasses and brought the front sight into sharp focus I did a better and kept in an even quadrant from 10’oclock high to 5:o’clock low on the right, out to the 7-ring. IMGP2324_x1000

So fine. Beautiful break in the heat, with temps in the mid 80’s only. Gorgeous day.
Club-guy Malcolm is running a Hunter Education Course next Tuesday up Pleasant Valley Road, out at the Grange. I’m there.

Pinned & Recessed

IMGP2310_x800IMGP2313x800The 6″ 1970 Model 19-3 is a sweet chunk of shootin’ iron.
There’s a bit of muzzle wear from the old clam-shell holster (too bad it didn’t come with it), so I even have a holster already to add s’more, an older (naturally) but good condition Bianchi 5BH.
Now I’m looking for ammo, which is plentiful.

UPDATE: Plentiful but plenty expensive. Found some 158gr Hydrashoks and a bunch of JSP’s – looking for heqavy-weight bullets not 110gr. flyweights that go high – I want the gun to shoot to point-of-aim and not have to re-regulate it for flyswatter loads. I want Practice to be spent on trigger-work and cylinder manupulations, not chasing a zero…

Meanwhile it’s 98° outside, and to stave off potential Malaria I am back inside experimenting with Hendrick’s gin and some $pecialty “Premium India Tonic Water.” Love the quinine…

Four Miles

So… After yesterday plunking a chunk down on the ’70 Smith Model-19 and buying some WallyWorld .357 loads (and a plastic Plano “can” of its own), I awoke and went on-line, and saw on the Gun-Club Calendar that there was a “Tea Party Shoot!” 9:00AM – 12:00PM – and FINALLY got my sh*t together.
Being a revolver-happy guy at the moment, I packed the ammo for the two big revolvers – each in its own can of .45 Colt, and .44-40 WCF – and drove out to the range. Just eight minutes and four miles from garage-to-gate. Seriously I’ve never had it this good.
The folks were very pleasant and the atmosphere casual and firm but not overbearing. As long as you exhibit proper procedure and protocol, and ESPECIALLY MUZZLE DISCIPLINE, everything is smooth – BUT people with too much attitude and too-casual regard for safety get moved on real quick.
I shot the Colt M1909 for familiarity first. Not knowing what to expect of the Ruger .44-40 I wanted a baseline. And so I shot low and to the left and a couple flyers off the black – Doh! Another cylinder rectified that, then the Colt and its ammo went away, and .44-40 came out — and after shooting .45Colt loads (and not Cowboy loads) it was like shooting a slightly hot .38 Special. What a fun gun! Except for unloading. The SAA ejector rod that pushes-out cases is uncomfortable close to the muzzle and that was just weird. Also the loading process feels a bit stilted and formal – but I suppose that’s a good thing. So I went trading back and forth every couple cylinders – only one caliber at a time on-station – and had some fun. The SAA is a trip, but thumbing back the hammer with the support hand is very fast. Woot!

Birghid was Right

When she’s right, she’s right: The eight ball says… buy!   It’s not a Colt but a Model 19-3 Smith. My copy of the Standard Catalog of Smith and Wesson indicates the SN# dates to/from 1970, when the first owner entered the Police Academy. It’s got a 6″ barrel with some holster-wear (from a clam-shell holster, look it up) and it’s a recoil soak with the right loads. I like N-frames for that reason. .357 Mag in a K-frame is like playing first-base bare-handed. No thanks.
Interesting article in a recent Gunzmag about heavy-for-caliber but slow bullets doing the job on bear-skulls better than out-and-out high-velocity. Proposed theory being that the speed robs the bullet of its strength, so it tends to shatter on impact instead of driving through. So we’ll try some heavy and slow bullets in this for home-defense use. Now I need a holster and some speed-loaders.

Carry On Calm, Swampy Meadows

The AZ permit came through. Woot! So Utah, AZ (which gives NV, so now I don’t have to go over to Minden and take a two-day class), and CA. Grails are reachable.

Working with the guy who was right-hand to the previous owner/contractor, we will do the walls and maybe even a ceiling (with insulation), anyhow it’s going to go forwards.

But not a Olympic sized pool. “Problem” being that the water table here is really quite high, in winter a pool could become a boat and lift off it’s base. That low spot noticed out in the meadow might mean free water, so perhaps a row or two of grapes is in order and also not requiring an ditch-tender irrigation system.

First other things first though, carpet up at the Low Granite Outcropping Thursday.


We went around the lake and over to our friend’s barnyard-place in Newcastle for a round of golf and some approximate birthday celebrations. This guy was booking it across the second Tee where the girls both put theirs into the water and I barely missed the same. I’m constantly and stupidly amazed at what we can do with modern close-focus stuff, even with a semi-obsolete point-and-shooter.
After the swinging carnage and beaten grass, we hied ourselves over to lunch and a bit of shopping up around Auburn. Being the only guy along they humored my wishes and we found a gun-shop, where to my delight I found this lovely example of antique shooteroonie, and another more recent (from Miwall), and some boxes of .30-40 Krag (Remington 180gr.) — and a Guns and Coffee T-shirt!! Yay Foothill Firearms in Newcastle!
IMGP2184_x1500 Seeing my enthusiasm and remarking on the caliber, the owner went into show-and-tell mode brought out a not-for-sale (I couldn’t afford it anyhow) 7-inch nickel-plated 1873 1st Gen Colt in .44-40 with the acid-etched “Frontier Six-Shooter” still distinctly visible, albeit with some flaking to the nickel in various parts. Sweet!
The clicks went C-O-L-T as I drew back the hammer. It was a nice mid-week excursion all around.