Apex trigger – Toaster Parts.

toaster partsUPDATE: For a wrinkle in time, all praises and thanks to Tam’s blog and her gunsmith friend for the notation, “toaster-parts.” After the events of the day I thought it was time to take the gun apart as far as possible, lube that which needed lubing, and install the metal trigger. I set the recoil assembly aside to marinate in a bath of slippery juice, and watched the Apex video closely. Hmm – not too hard.
With my Craftsman magnetic parts-holder as a catch-basin and a piece of thin birch-wood as a block, I got out my punches and little brass hammer and proceeded to get to the fiddly bits. Tap-tappty-tap! TAP-TAP-TAP! The main body pin was a bit tough, but the others were easier.
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The way the trigger spring goes on and off was important (hook up on the small coil) and how the take-down lever fits in at 10-degrees off horizontal. Then the reassembly with the locking block and a bit of fiddling until it came back together.
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The metal trigger movement is free and un-encumbered, and less spongy and more linear than the polymer trigger – no filing or use of an emery cloth was required. Image shown with take-down lever still to be inserted.
There was a lot less effort required than I imagined or feared.apex trigger right-side

The little green spud was supplied as a place-holder for the spring and trigger pin.
The trigger is still relatively heavy as I did not (yet) get the Duty/Carry Action Enhancement kit that requires removal of the rear sight, which is a royal bitch from everyone I’ve been told (including my buddy) as the base is Loc-tited and needs a bit of torch on it, and a BIG hammer.
We’ll shoot it and see.

220 Rounds, Day-1

UPDATED: After a week of carry it was time to run some rounds through the Shield-9. I had a TWO 50-count box of Wally-World Winchester 124 grain JHP’s (and I had already loaded my 6, 8-round magazines and two 7-round mags with the JHP’s), a 100-rounds of Winchester 115gr. FMJ – and a 20-count box of $$ Federal 150gr HST JHP’s. (end edit)
At the range we set targets at 7-yards and proceeded to load magazines and blast away, and see where the points of impact varied. The difference was slight between the 150-HST’s and the 124-JHP’s, and I seemed to be tossing everything low and left.
I was mixing rounds too. Some of the blunts with some of the JHP’s interspersed, just to see what effect that might make and where they might string. It was an experiment on my part with no scientific basis or scoring, with a factory-fresh gun with factory-fresh magazines.
Several magazines later I tried loading one, ejecting the magazine and re-filling it, and re-seating the magazine – and I got a light-strike. Stoppage! No Bang! Hmmm…
So rack the slide and catch the round, what do I see but a dimpled primer. Are they hard primers or seated low? I proceeded to fire-off the magazine and re-loaded the (FMJ) in another batch of rounds and everything fired-off OK.
More shooty goodness and several magazines later another light strike. Huh?
Thinking “Factory Fresh” I thought, “What about lube?” So to rectify that dry-feel, I took of the slide and got out my Brownell’s “Friction Defense” gun-oil with the pink tint that looks suspiciously like ATF and dribbled some on the barrel-hood and rails.
More shooting ensued, then another stoppage, a failure to eject. This is getting interesting!
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WTF? My buddy in the neighboring lane had told me that his recoil assembly had taken a dump (it broke, and he had to get a new one) and that it required a lot of lube to make the double-coil springs run right. So the top comes off again and along with some Shooter’s Choice ere-grease on the rails, I re-oiled the barrel hood, and slopped a bunch on the recoil-spring assembly.
More gunny-goodness until the brass runs out and we depart. I need to buy more ammo.
One thing we noticed, the striker seems to leave a drag mark – or the pin is longitudinal shaped like a Glock? My buddies ejected brass had the same shape.
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At home I decided to change the trigger…

Ten Days to Cow-Town

Simply could not resist the little 20-inch barrel Rossi Model 92 clone-carbine at my local Happy-Gunstuff retailer, something to keep my .44-40 Vaquero company, and at very reasonable price. Comes with the original box (that says Interarms) and manuals, and is un-fired. Older NOS gun with No weird safety on the receiver. Looks a lot like this (but is not this) with a black-ish stain on the wood: (not my picture). Ordered-up a bunch more ammo from Lucky Gunner, this is coming to the Gunblogger Rendezvous XI with me. Woot-Howdy!
Rossi 92 .44-40

Low Profile

We had a nice night at the Gun Club banquet, and met some neat people who provided enjoyable conversation – and so I missed out on the 9mm Shield and the other raffle prizes but it went to a good cause. Went to bed late, about 10:30pm, and slept in until 7:30 – awakening to bright sunrise and greenery. Woot!
Nice to be out from under the damp blanket for a day, so I threw open all the windows as the temps rocketed up to 71-degrees and brought-in some fresh air. With a dry spell forecast and neighbors working outside with blowers and various yard-implements, I vacuumed up all the wood splinters and junk in the Garage then set-to the real mischief.
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Oops, now I need a low-profile gas-block to fit under the Troy rail. I was unhappy with the Magpul plastic set because it did not allow me to put things where I wanted them. The M-Lok screw-down fasteners interfered with each other at the various available positions where I wanted them, and I was unable to close the clam-shell onto the standard handguard snap-ring because of the metal heat-shields kept getting hung-up on the interior bits.
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I loosened up the gas-block before realizing I had to remove the roll-pin, then I realized I had to remove the muzzle-end flash-hider/compensator. Good thing for the soft-jaws on the bench vise! Now I can also put-on a jazzy compensator-thing too, since flash-hiders are Evil in California. Good thing they are practically indistinguishable from each other and Politicians are inherently stupid people.
The Troy Omega free-float Rail was on-sale and perhaps was a loss-leader and obsolete with current trends, but I always liked it and again it was at a substantial discount. Now I need to get the old handguard Delta-ring off so I can mount-up the float-tube…

Happy Gunstuff

UPDATES: Various switcheroo and moderation for the hothouse flowers of political correctness: the #Idiorati&Ignorati:
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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
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Fun Show!

Looking forward to the upcoming Fuunshow at the County Fairgrounds, and the night-before-dinner-and-raffle at the American Legion Post. I could win a Glock – something I had never considered before – becoming a hunter doesn’t change that, but buying a raffle ticket opens up the prospect. The “Pick A Glock Raffle” offers the Weiner a choice of (notice the gaps in the lineup): 17, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 26, 27, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 38, 39. I ave no idea, they all appear to have those “finger divots” on the grip that need to be removed with a Dremel tool and re-stippled with a soldering pencil. Since this is a fantasy-camp exercise thing I’m leaning towards the leetle ones in standard caliber, 26, 30, 36… The .45GAP and .357Sig could be interesting too. Not sure about a teeny .10mm but that could be fun too!
UPDATE: No Banana-glock — but the banquet was fun and done by 9:30, in a smaller and more intimate setting than the Big Friends show, and I sat-in with a nice group of local people and had a good time for a good cause.

Local Color, Local Heroes

Fall is in the air and last week we had a bit of local event-stuff at our Neighbor’s ranch. Out by the pond there’s a Bunkhouse and a Saloon built by Ed from local-cut timber, and we were invited for a Veteran’s Celebration pot-luck, which was a nice way to meet folks since we’re the newbies.
There were a variety of dishes including ground-elk cabbage rolls and our coleslaw.
Before dinner we had a Pledge of Allegiance, and after dinner Ed had a brief talk about his friend Buck who was a firearms instructor, and much-much more – who had passed away recently. As a half-Cherokee they held a ceremony for Buck atop a mountain overlooking the back-country of Lake Tahoe where his ashes were spread. There were a couple remembrances and stories told about him.
Basically the whole night was given over to veterans telling stories of their experiences, and it started with this: Ed’s first story revolved around the deceased’s participation as a US adviser training troops in a southern nation to the south in the mid-1980’s. Apparently a group of advisers he was leading on a bus was stopped by a group of “banditos”… Apparently they set up an ambush and flanked each side of the bus. Big mistake. After an attempt to communicate and resolve the issue (whatever it was) failed, the order was given and the guys inside the bus rolled out each side and took out the ambush. None of the “banditos” survived.
A petite female vet who must have been in her late 60’s (remember, never ask a woman’s age) recounted her time in Germany after Desert Storm when she had re-upped, where she met a German Chaplain with a German Shepard who went on marathon runs together with her unit, and who she ran into again in Georgia on runs when she was stationed there.
She also knew Ed and Buck from attending the one-room schoolhouse down in Pleasant Valley, while he went to the fancy there-room one further up the road, and her school beating them in Baseball. She was part Native American too and Buck used-to call her, “His Little Comanche.” Annie Oakley would have gotten a run for her money from her!
A third guy talked a bunch about being a Tunnel-Rat in Vietnam, the various equipment they used and later things…
Another Vietnam Vet brought his 94-year old father-in-law who had been a Marine artilleryman in the Pacific WWII, fighting from Peleliu to Iwo Jima – and who watched the flag(s) go up on Mount Suribachi, on Iwo Jima. He didn’t want to talk about that much and said he only survived because he was in the artillery. I got the distinct feeling he still was frustrated at the conditions and difficulties of supporting his forward Marines, against the Japanese redoubts and coral caves, but he was as fit and spry today as any 70-yr old – and more than most 60+yr old corporate-cubicle rats. Amazing.
I’m sorry I didn’t get to talk to the crew-member from the USS Pueblo and congratulate him on his survival and sacrifice, but I hope I will get-to at another event. People these days just don’t seem to understand that Service IS Sacrifice, and how far it goes.

Thanks Rendezvousers-X!

Reno Guns and Range has grown considerably since last year when we went to try-out the simulation exercises, and has moved to a huge and spacious building near the Harley dealership. The range walls are .50BMG capable and there is superior ventilation, so much so that being indoors at their location was preferable to being outdoors, especially when the fire-smoke hung in the air and occluded visibility. Rangemaster Kevin Crawford also had some very pertinent advice re: carry – “If you carry one of these (pointing to belt), you should carry one off these (pointing to tourniquet).” While I arrived in Reno there was a big, state-funeral being held for Officer Carl Howell who had been killed a week ago in Carson City, responding to a domestic – the first time a Carson City sheriff’s deputy has been shot and killed on duty since 1963. The suspect emerged shooting and they exchanged gunfire, and while the Officer reportedly killed the suspect, before medical attention could arrive he bled-out from an aortal leg wound and died. So now I am looking for a SOF® Wide Tactical Tourniquet (SOFTT-W) and some Z-Pak, and I’m all for a class offering instruction on the use of these too. So maybe next year we’ll get some hands-on training? If not, I will before then.

I suppose I had the benefit of a fat wallet since this is my main charitable event each year, so I was disposed to paying full-retail on the Raffle, and with the extra tickets was able to score a number of fine items including the one AR receiver that was available, and so in that sense I Won the Gun. Also a couple very nice Sig ball-caps, some Blackhawk! Aviator Flight Ops Gloves that fit well and will be a splendid accoutrement to the Gentleman’s Express this summer as we coast over the high-mountain passes, an AP Custom 3×3 shot-shell belt holder for Three-gun, and a pair of MOA Beast collapsible target stands from Mitch Gerlinger, the owner and designer of MOA Targets.

More later…

Rendezvous-X and Seasons’-change

The sun rises later over the Prairie and I get up out of bed later – like 6:30. The smoke from the fires all around has dissipated today. There’s a coolness in the morning air that has been missing since May, and I could run the mower if I felt like it,, and the shelves at Walmart are denuded of archery equipment as the hunting season is about to begin – it’s not Cabela’s but it’s a good barometer of the seasons and that Fall is around the corner.
And the Gunblogger Rendezvous was a smash-hit for me. I got to meet several people who’s blogs I have only read, and others who actually read mine! I got to re-unite with old friends and meet new ones. The trip to Scheel’s was interesting and overwhelming as usual. I never know what to buy there and just don’t. Almost bought a box of .243 Hornady but managed to overcome the excitement.
After Thursday night dinner with Mike, Kiwi, Kevin, Billl, and Paula I hit the sack early. The drive-up was an interesting drive-variation with a route over Kingsbury Grade on the Nevada side of South Tahoe that I had not driven in thirty-three years. The view out over the high desert farmland is spectacular and the little town of Genoa down on the valley’s edge was Nevada’s first settlement – or something.
Friday morning was an early wake-up at 5:00 to get ready and meet Kevin and his Giant Truck, and go get the Gardner Gun in Gardnerville. Once again suppressor-maker and De Lisle carbine-guy Richard at Special Interest Arms had something interesting for Show-and-Tell, and it was good to see him again and get to know him better. His knowledge of the gun is encyclopedic and he probably wrote the Wiki on it, that is if he did such things.
The smoke was very evident in the high desert valley morning, and a huge orb of the sun rose red over the hills, then grew smaller and more faint as it got higher. I remarked that visibility sucked and the 900-yard targets might be hard to reach today.
We got back to Breakfast late but there were some crumbs and fruit remaining – and coffee!
Met-up with Kevin’s spotter-buddy Rusty who I remember from last year, old pal Dutch-Oven Jeff, and new Nevada resident and commenter-friend Pat who has made quite an impression here. And then I got to meet Clayton Cramer and his irrepressible wife Rhonda — then it was back upstairs, grab the guns, and off to the most EXCELLENT and friendly staff at the Washoe County range…
I brought the little .22WRF Model 90 Winchester, the Ruger Vaquero, the S&W Model 19-3, and my carry Ed Brown Kobra. OBSERVATION: It was interesting to carry in Nevada and its something (carry) that I am adjusting-to. I learned that my Galco OWB “Fletch” holster, while very slimming and non-printing, prevented me from reaching into my hip pocket where my wallet normally resides, and it was finally easier to extricate my wallet and move it to the left than re-adjust the holster – after that I used the Milt Sparks Summer Special instead.
At the range The Gardner Gun occupied the full-auto space at the end and Richard was there with an assortment of full-auto suppressed rifles as well, including the “Trecenti,” Latin for 300 which is his new flagship-gun, the integrally suppressed 300 BLK AR-15. Also and again his friend and business partner (?) Brian was there as he was at last year’s event.
I shot Pat’s .450 Lott and I’m glad it was just a deer-load. The Model 19-3 should have been cleaned (my bad, but I didn’t) and a diet of .38Spl illustrated how residue build-up can affect the chambers of a .357Mag as primers showed evidence of flow and cratering, and locked-up the gun until Pat managed to open it. I put the magnum loads aside and shot .38Spl instead and it proved very accurate. The .44-40 was also accurate and with hunting loads not any worse for handling or feel – it soaked ’em up and kept poking holes in paper. The little .22WRF trombone also zipped to POA, and if I had brought my spotting scope I could have seen the group better (or at-all), but during a cease-fire I got a close look and was impressed. Maybe I’ll get a .22Mag pistol and have a shared-round companion gun for the rifle…

More upcoming.