Wednesday, October 31, 2007

It's Halloween...Do You Know Where Your Popular Culture Is?

Ah, little slut dolls from Victoria's Secret; Halloween pre-teen slutty witches, slutty milk maids, and bondage sluts; Kid Rock showing his Victorian (not Victoria's Secret, sillies!) furniture on Larry King; Democratic Presidential candidates compare UFO stories and call for the government to come clean on the Roswell incident; Hollywood is on the verge of striking, which will mean no more crappy, unwatched antiwar movies; Britney Spears' new album is actually getting good reviews...what do it all mean?

Beats me, but I feel fine!

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

New Model 70 from Winchester

I'm doing a lot of catching up,. since I was on the road last week filming cowboy stuff, among other things. My pal John Snow over at the Outdoor Life GUNSHOTS Blog, of which I am a proud, although not particularly prolific, member, has the specifics on the new Winchester Model 70 rifle relaunch, including a detailed look at the pretty slick revised trigger system:
One benefit of this design is that there is zero takeup in the system. Likewise, while there is a certain amount of creep and overtravel—you need both for a mechanical trigger to function—the perception on the part of the shooter is that there is none. You get nothing but a clean break when you pull the trigger. This trigger feels very, very good. And for shooters who find the addition of safety levers to the trigger itself unsightly—a la Savage Arm’s AccuTrigger—the lines of the M.O.A. are neat and clean.
John's got the complete report, including range info. I'm not particularly surprised by this, since the super high quality FNH tactical rifles, essentially pre-'64 Winchesters, continued in production. I unequivocxally state that the FNH A4 Special Police Rifle shooting system in .308 is the single most accurate out-of-the-box rifle I've ever pulled the trigger on.

Fred Thompson on Gun Control

This from Dave Petzal over at Field & Stream:
My Fellow Americans:

I will be brief. Yesterday, I was contacted by a Mr. Paul Henke, who handles "new media" relations for Fred Thompson, the tallest Republican presidential candidate who is also an actor. Mr. Henke has sent us the following statement, which the Gun Nut is running as a public service. The statement is about the U.N.'s position on the individual ownership of guns:

"Last year, the United Nations Sub-Commission on the Promotion and Protection of Human Rights declared that international human rights law requires all nations to adopt strict gun control laws. These “minimum” provisions are much more restrictive than any of those on the books anywhere in the U.S. and would almost certainly violate the Second Amendment of our Constitution.
Thankfully, the Framers of our Constitution recognized this potential peril to our liberty, and enshrined in our Second Amendment the more basic right of self-defense. The U.N. can say what it likes about other countries’ citizens’ possession of small arms being a violation of human rights law, but so long as the United States is a sovereign nation governed by its Constitution, its words will have no effect here. And I am glad for it. "

My own feeling is that the U.N. would screw up the recipe for ice water. The U.N. could not break up a fight between a couple of girl scouts. The U.N. building would make an excellent high-rise apartment site. But I’m not running for president, Mr. Thompson is.
I'm 100% with Petzal on this!

Mitt Romney on Gun Control

Saturday, October 27, 2007

A Few Clarifying Points...

...on photos that may or may not be appearing on the Internet in the next few days:
1) It wasn't my feather boa.
2) The feather boa in question belonged to TLLF* (The lovely Lisa Farrell).
3) Yes, she really did win an award for "Best Saloon Floozy."
4) I did not imitate Elvis.
5) It's not a felony.
And a good time was had by all!

More later...

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Couple of Interesting Data Points

This from over at HK Pro:
UPDATE: 10.23.2007: HKPRO.COM has obtained a copy of the BKA document approving the MR223 and MR308 rifles for civilian consumption inside Germany. What is important to remember is that this document is specific to Germany only, and lists low capacity magazines, presumably for compliance with German law. Also listed are several barrel lengths that are common with the HK416 and HK417.

As far as U.S. consumers are concerned, they should not make certain assumptions. First of all, these rifles as submitted have NOT been submitted to American regulatory authorities as of this writing, and the specifications are subject to change at any time.
That means the HK 416/417 may eventually find their way into American consumer hands. In truth, I haven't shot one; I've handled Bill Murphy's, and he's really high on it.

There is no doubt that the HK gas pistons guns would quickly become big sellers (no doubt at a tidy price tag, too). Unless HK moves relatively quickly — not something the German company is noted for — they may miss the curve. I've shot the LWRC and the Sig 556 piston guns; DS Arms Gas Trap and Bushmaster's gas piston guns are coming into the market. POF is pretty well established, and even the Masada is looking for like a real gun that vaporware. Should be interesting!

Another data point — Some of the issues on the Ruger SR9 trigger seem to stem from people dry-firing the gun and/or weighing the trigger pull with the magazine out (which the Ruger manual specifically says is a no-no). Walt Rauch bought this to my attention last night; he'd emailed Ruger and asked about the trigger, and they responded by asking how he'd measured the trigger. When Walt inserted the magazine and reweighed the trigger, it broke at 6.25 pounds.

I just got an email routed from a dealer talking about the very same thing, so I thought I should post this. The SR9 should ONLY be dry-fired — and that includes weighing the trigger pull — with the magazine inserted! Thanks to Walt for checking with Ruger and clearing that up!

An Interesting Conundrummmmmmmmm

I've been keeping tabs on all the response to the Ruger SR9, and it reminds me a lot of my old days as a rock critic in New York City.

The interesting point to me is that, ultimately, any "review" — including mine — is utterly subjective. To wit, what is a "good trigger?" As it happens, a few years back I commissioned a long-slide 1911 .45 ACP from Ross Carter, at the time one of the great gunsmiths on the 1911 platform. For once, I decided to spare no expense, have a gun built exactly to my specifications and with my favorite parts. The finished gun, which was on the cover of AMERICAN HANDGUNNER and was auctioned off with the proceeds going to Carter, who was severely injured in an accident right after he finished the long-slide, has taken on a kind of legendary status, especially regarding its trigger pull. The trigger pull had to be felt to be believed...a perfect 3 pound (as I specified) "glass rod snapping" break. It had the kind of trigger pull gun guys talked about with reverence every time you snapped it, John Browning smiled down from heaven.

I remember AH Editor Roy Huntington pulled the trigger and exclaiming, "Good lord! Now this is a trigger!"* Now here's the conundrum...does that perfect trigger mean you'll shoot the gun better? If you had asked me this 10 years ago, I would have said, "Are you nuts! Of course you'll shoot better with a perfect trigger, you moron!"

I am less sure of that now, based largely on my changing Real World experience. When I was a serious comeptition shooter, I believed in the Perfect Trigger Pull. I shot 1911s of various flavors — mostly Wilson's — and I fretted about trigger pulls the way a soon-to-be-bride frets about her wedding dress. Since launching SHOOTING GALLERY and DOWN RANGE, however, I typically shoot a lot of different kinds of guns. LOTS of different kinds of guns. Most of them have factory, stock triggers.

What I have found is the less I fret about the trigger, the bestter I shoot — Oh my heavens! Can shooting be mostly in the head rather than the hand? I've shot the GUNSITE basic drills with a really nice 1911 and an out-of-the-box S&W M&P...and scored the same. I've gone through classes with DA/SA Sigs — the DA to SA transition being the bane of many shooting experts' existance — no big. I bitch mightily about Glock triggers, but they're no harder to shoot than single-actioning a Colt Python, if you're paying attention. Ask Dave Sevigny, or Jessical Abbate, or Randi Rogers...all national and world champions with Glocks.

Super slick, super light triggers are VERY important...if you're shooting specific types of competition. My big turning point was my class at the Rogers Shooting School...essentially, Bill Rogers' message was "shoot what you have in your hand."

I thought Bill was full of bat dookey, but in for a penny; in for a pound. He was right; I was wrong. The less I fretted about the trigger, the better I shot.

I'm not talking here about WRETCHED triggers (think 1950s vintage Spanish semiautos), but the triggers in current production guns. Which brings us to the Ruger SR9...I stand by my comments, ie, the trigger is fine just as it comes out of the box. I do not believe that Ruger dinked the test guns we all shot...the guns, however, had all been shot. As I said before, there is no difference in trigger pull between my T&E SR9 and my S&W M&P that can't be accounted for in the number of rounds through the M&P versus an out-of-the-box unfired gun.

If you want a "glass rod snapping" trigger pull, you need to avoid striker-fired polymer-framed pistols! There is a fundamental difference between a FUNCTIONAL trigger pull — an out-of-the-box Glock, M&P, Taurus, XD or, yes, Ruger SR9 — and a competition trigger pull, just as there is a fundamental difference between my Honda Element and a Formula 1 race car. My Honda, however, does everything I need done by a car or truck.

I stand by my comments.

Ditto on the safety...I have talked to very credible people who have trouble wiping the SR9 manual safety. I don't, not at all, and I've shot a bunch of 'em. So we come back to my days as a rock critic...this stuff is TOTALLY subjective! As a rock critic, I tried to remind myself that there was this HUGE gap between "what I like" and "what is good." Heaven help me, I never cared for the Rolling Stones...that doesn't mean the band isn't brilliant at what it does.

For the most part, it's the same with guns. Modern guns are on the whole much better than we give them credit for. The marketplace is NOT like it was in the 1950s and even the 1960s...American manufacturers are simply not producing complete lemons, because the marketplace won't allow it!

Think about it!

PS: John McCain hunting down Osama with a Thompson Center? Maybe he should have toured Sig...

[*If you must know, I spec'ed a Cylinder & Slide trigger kit with a Match Commander hammer, an STI carbon fiber trigger and specific Wolff springs.]

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Have Your Picture Taken With the Doofus!

This is from Knob Creek. The beautiful person is Julia, my friend (and GUNSITE alumnus) Charles Riggs' daughter, who should have know better than let me stand behind her...

Monday, October 22, 2007

On Hunting

Here's a really nice piece from John Lott in NRO on hunting:
The benefits of hunting extend well beyond deer and agriculture. Florida and Louisiana have about the same number of alligators, but Florida faces a problem Louisiana doesn’t: alligator attacks on humans. Alligators grow over their lives and can live to be over a100 years old. As they age their means of sustenance changes. A four foot alligator will eat fish and frogs. A twelve foot one will eat deer, dogs, and even people. Hunting keeps the number of these largest alligators in check.

Cougar hunting produces similar benefits. When young male cougars mature they are forced out of the dominant male cougar’s territory or they risk being killed. In California, where hunting has been banned since an initiative 1990, this is increasingly forcing them into human populated areas.

Preventing hunting also has another downside. It causes these dangerous wild animals to lose their fear of humans. In turn, they adapt to their surroundings, treating humans as just another vulnerable food source, and increasing the likelihood that they will attack.
You know, on another subject entirely, not to diss NRO and the mainline conservatives, but I'm getting a bit tired of the constant implication that we "fringe" libertarian/conservatives ought to look into our hearts and at least consider a Rudy or a Mitt. Read my lips...on the only issue that matters to me, there appears to be no difference between Mitt, Rudy and the Hillary-Beast. If that's my choice, I stay home and take my chances on the Dems. At least I know where they're coming from.

Want me to support Mitt and/or Rudy? All they've got to do is pass the litmus test, and I've got it boiled down to one simple question...answer "YES" and I'm with you 100%:

If you are elected President, do you agree to unconditionally oppose up to and including a Presidential veto any legislation aimed at banning or limiting law-abiding citizens' access to currently unregulated firearms and firearm parts, including so-called "assault weapons," so-called "high-capacity magazines" and so-called "sniper rifles?"

Golly gosh gee, how hard can that be?

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Snowy Sunday

Well, I was going to go shooting today, except that it's snowing sideways and is colder than Hillary's...never mind. It is cold, though, and it's looking like serious snow. Yesterday we got the snow fences up, which will hopefully postpone the usual Giant Driveway Drift for a while.

The Ruger launch has been very successful...reports of sell-outs on the first 2000 guns all around the country. Some people don;t like the SR9, but then again some people don't like chocolate or Sarah Michelle Geller. As I've said before, it's an evolutionary rather than a revolutionary step. Revolutionary steps in firearms tend to be few and far between. The first M-16 was a revolutionary step...the 10th iteration of a gas-piston AR, while a significantly better gun, is simply the next step on hte product lifespan J-curve.

To me, the Sig Sauer P250 is more of a revolutionary step because it separates the "gun," the inernal stainless steel cradle that carries the hammer and trigger mechanism, from the gripframe and barrel/slide assembly in a way that allows fullsize or compact grip frames, caliber changes, etc. The question is whether the concept will move forward or dead-end with the 250. Not all ideas, even good ideas, move forward.

Let's talk for a minute about dry side-by-side comparisons on some striker-fired guns. In front of me I've got 3 9mm striker-fired pistols, the Ruger SR9, the Glock G34 and the S&W M&P fullsize. The SR9 is unfired (and has NOT been disassembled and cleaned); I've got a little better than a thousand rounds through the Glock and the M&P has been through the GUNSITE 250/350 pistol class, so a minimum of 2000 rounds through it.

The SR9 trigger is definitely "grittier" than the other two (and grittier than the two dozen test guns I shot out in Arizona a few weeks ago). The S&W has more grit than the Glock. The Glock has the least take-up and, frankly, the "cleanest" trigger break of the three. It seems to me the M&P has slightly more take-up than the SR9, but it is a little less obvious because of the greater curve in the M&P trigger, The M&P has a trigger stop built into the trigger/trigger guard, which helps the felt trigger pull of that gun.

In terms of trigger reset, with all 3 guns sitting in my lap and me dry-firing them over and over again, they all seem to me to reset at pretty much the same point. In short, there might be a measureable difference in reset between the three guns, but I can't feel it.

The magazine button on the SR9 is stiff, but no stiffer than the Glock. The M&P is the easiest by far. The manual safety on the SR9 is easy to knock off with the thumb, but harder to put on because of its rearward location on the slide. It works best to slide the tip of my thumb to the rear and engage the safety with the tip of the thump rather than the meaty part of the thumb (as I might with a 1911 safety). I also notice that the SR9 safety reset is getting easier as I work with it dry-firing.

In terms of pure trigger pull, the absolute best striker-fired gun I've every fired is the little Wilson ADP 9mm. The one I shot, which was one of Bill Wilson's guns, was excellent, and I look forward to getting one to shoot.

The SR9 is hands down the skinniest in both grip and slide, with the Glock the fattest. The SR9 and the M&P both mimic 1911 grip angles; the Glock has its own slightly different angle. The SR9 sights are excellent, but the M&P sights are Novak night sights, which are world-class. I'd still prefer a set of Heinie "Straight 8s" (or for-real Novaks for the SR9 and the Glock) and if I was going to campaign any of these guns in IDPA or USPSA, I would change the sights, but that's just me...all three are perfectly serviceable as they sit.

Neither the Glock nor the M&P have magazine disconnect safties; the Ruger does. As I've said before, it's not this huge issue with me one way or the other (with the exception of the Browning HP, where the magazine disconnect has a huge adverse effect on the trigger pull). The reason this doesn't bother me is that all my training focuses on keeping the gun hot all the time, with an emphasis on speedy reloading. Yes, I'm aware of the "classic" scenario of a person loosing the magazine and having to single feed the me, this is pretty much on par with "assault by zombie." If it worries you, the SR9 magazine disconnect is easily removeable.

In terms of feel in my hand, all three guns are fiercely ergonomic. I don't like the Glock finger grooves, but it's not to the point of obsession. The Ruger feels best to me because it feels the most like a 1911...your results may differ, and objects in the rearview mirror, etc...

I prefer black guns and would like to have some kind of Nitron/shake-and-bake finish on the Ruger, as on both the Glock and the M&P. Hell, I wish EVERY semiauto slide looked and felt like the Glock!

The Ruger has a manual safety, and — to me — that is a great big plus for a couple of reasons.
For off-body carry, say in something like a SafePacker or a fanny pack, I insist on a mechanical safety and/or a long double-action first stroke. Why? Because guns in bags get bounced around a lot, and Murphy (as in Murphy's law) is incredibly ingenious. Safe action/trigger action guns do not require a human finger to pull the trigger.

More importantly, I want a way to render the gun safe after an action. Example...holding someone at gunpoint or after a shooting, when you're suffering the effects of the huge chemical cocktail your body has generated in the "flee or fight" response. You lose fine muscle control, may have the shakes, tunnel vision, etc. Even if you have your finger off the trigger, you're still suscetible to a "clinch reaction" if you stumble, are bumped hard or get pushed — you clinch your hand, including the trigger finger. In a less-stressful situation and your finger is off the trigger, no big; in the super high stress of a shooting situation, maybe big big.

In the first case, a grip safety like the one on the Springfield XD will work to alleviate the risk. A thumb safety works in both situations. I prefer a thumb safety over a grip safety because I have girly-man hands without a lot of meat in the web between the thumb and the forefinger, and it's not unusal for me to "miss" the grip safety on a 1911...especially if I get a less-than-perfect draw.

Feel is completely subjective, and everyone's hand and body mechanics are different. I could pick up any one of these three guns and, without any modifications at all, go to war with it. All three of them will shoot more accurately than I can. The Glock 34 is at the upper end of its own product J-curve, that is, it is the product of more than 20 years of refinement, and that refinement shows. The M&P is a couple of years into its own evolution, and the Ruger's just starting out. The compact SR9 is going to be a monster!

Let me address a couple of other points that have been bought up on the Ruger and DOWN RANGE forums. Ruger suggests you only dry-fire the gun wiht the magazine in place. So what? You wanna dry-fire it, put the magazine in. I notice that in a morning of dry-firing, the SR9 and the M&P had their magazines in and the Glock didn't. The other is the "billboard" comment — Ruger puts a lot of words on their guns...well, so does S&W. Only Glock hones to the minimalist's path as far as warnings, etc. The Ruger's loaded chamber indicator is a bit overwrought, but it is impossible to mistake it in the dark...and NO chamber indicator should replace the simple expediency of pulling back the slide to see if there's a round in the chamber!

Whether you're talking about magazine disconnects, loaded chamber indicators, or other "features," no gadget should ever replace intelligent technique and training.

Which would I choose? I'd need a lot more rounds through the SR9 (and the Springfield XD and the Taurus OSS) before I made that determination. The Taurus OSS .45 is one heck of a gun, but I only have a couple of hundred rounds through the platform. I need to get an example for more thorough testing. I am going to take the SR9 through the GUNSITE 250/350 class after the SHOT Show, and my inclination is to take my SR9 and have it overhauled slightly before I go (trigger clean-up, maybe new sights, smooth out the other controls). I was going to call Wayne Novak tomorrow and talk to him about the work.

Hope this helps!

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Ruger SR9

Getting great response to the Ruger SR9 launch over on DOWN RANGE!

My long-term T&E SR9 just arrived, and I'm going to start putting rounds though it this weekend.

There is a LOT to like in this new pistol...very 1911-centric ergonomics; a manual safety in the 1911 position; interchangeable flat or rounded backstrap; good sights; excellent trigger; skinny skinny skinny!

I can't WAIT for the compact version!

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Red October!

Tomorrow is the big day for our first Internet gun launch with Big Red!

You're definitely going to want to hit DOWN RANGE and check it out first thing tomorrow! It's pretty cool, if I do say so myself.

Just got back from a thoroughly pleasant day with Bill Wilson at his home in Arkansas...yeah, nothing like a sucky day of shooting premium 1911s on Bill's home range! He and Joyce whipped up a great dinner for me, what was above and beyond the call...thanks, guys! And thanks to all the staff of Wilson Combat, which allowed us to once again cause havoc at the plant! Definitely another set of thanks are in order.

The night before I had dinner in Eureka Springs with my old friend (and regular Blog commenter) Guy Neill, who now works for Bill and who is one of the great living authorities on baked beas at BBQ joints. Always great to catch up with Guy, and you'll get to see him since we put him on camera for SG! It was cool at dinner because I got to sign a couple of gun bags (WIlson's, of course) from SG fans.

Am home for a long stretch now, which gives me a chance to continue the massive overhaul/clean-up of the gun room — you could eat off the floor of Bill's reloading room; you can't even find the floor of mine! — and give me a chance to catch up on gun tests.

And — OH JOY OH JOY OH JOY!!! — I need to install the new L&R Ultrasonic Gun Cleaning System! I believe it will make me a better person, as well as save wear and tear on the dishwasher...

Saturday, October 13, 2007

The Smell of Napalm in the Afternoon...

First, let me say that I was BLOWN AWAY this weekend by the number of people who wanted to shake my hand and talk about SHOOTING GALLERY...blown away and humbled...thank you all so much! I hope it goes without saying that the most important part of SG and COWBOYS are you viewers, and I treasure your thanks, your handshakes and your thoughts.

Those things make me a very lucky person!


Thanks to Kenny, Tracy, Joe, the Little Fat Guy and the whole crew at Knob Creek. Also a very special thanks to veteran instructor and security officer Chris Schlager, who totally ran interference for me and the crew and did so with spectacular good humor...thanks,dude!

I got to fire the flamethrower today, as well as meet an exceptional couple — Dave and Sunni Michael, who quite literally keep the flames burning. Shall I say the flamethrower was hot? Hella-hot? Definitely major caliber? I can't wait for you guys to see the video! I may try to get an MPEG up on DOWN RANGE...

This was also the most expensive expo I've ever been to, to wit:
John Ross Signature .500 S&W Magnum revolver...expensive
S&H Arms Ruger 77/44 .44 Magnum bolt-action rifle with suppressor...more expensive
Anzio Iron Works .50 BMG rifle...oh come on, Michael!
Still, gotta be done, especially with the possibility of the Hillary-Beast on the horizon. Thankfully, I can spread the cash out over a few months!

All in all, big fun had by all...on to Wilson Combat for the 30th anniversary show...

Friday, October 12, 2007

Rounds Downrange

Pretty good day at Knob Creek — excellent guys are going to love this stuff!

Spent a little more time with a 7.62 Krink...I gotta say, I should just suck it up and have Marc Krebs build me a short-barreled rifle semi version. It's still the best AK derivative I've ever shot. Tomorrow I'm going to sneak off for a few minutes and shoot John Ross' .500 5-inch blaster. Most intelligently designed big revolver I've ever handled. With that tensioned barrel, John is getting awesome long-distance groups from his scoped version.

SOOOOOOOO, two major gun announcements [hopefully] next week, including the long-awaited overhauled-from-the-Euro-version Sig Sauer P-250 9mm and Ruger's super-secret blaster. I've shot both of them and of course have exclusive video for DOWN RANGE, and I have to say that I think shooters are going to be pretty happy. I certainly was. The baseline just keeps getting better and better.


And in the never-ending Boulder Embarrasses Itself cat saga, the Colorado Division of Wildlife will not charge guy who capped our neighborhood lion, since he "acted to prevent injury to human life," to wit, his own and his family's.

Howver, this little ditty, courtesy of the Boulder Daily Camera via Jim Shephard of the Shooting Wire:
Advocates with the Boulder-based Sinapu Carnivore Protection Program said Kocar should face criminal charges in the incident for "baiting" the lion by leaving the dog tied up outside overnight.

Wendy Keefover-Ring, director of the program, said Thursday she was "disappointed" but not surprised by the Division of Wildlife's decision.

"I think the Division of Wildlife is sending a poor message," Keefover-Ring said. "The Division of Wildlife is a conservative agency. They're going to give you a ticket if your dog is chasing a deer, but they're not going to give you a ticket if a mountain lion is attacking a dog that you've put in a vulnerable place."

Keefover-Ring said media attention given to the shooting has sparked both praise and criticism of the protection group.

"I don't think I've ever worked on an issue where there was so much attention," she said. "I was surprised at the reaction. There was no middle ground."

Keefover-Ring said her group shut down a blog on its Web site,, because posted comments were becoming "nasty."

Rob Edward, director of Sinapu's Carnivore Restoration Program, posted a note on the site about the tense dialogue.

"Although there were several thoughtful posts on both sides of the debate, several people, posting under false names and e-mail addresses, chose to make personal, vitriolic attacks against Sinapu and our staff," Edward wrote. "The needless death of this mountain lion raises serious questions about our responsibility to be thoughtful stewards of wild and domestic creatures. If you disagree, that's your right, but that doesn't make you right."
Okay...I admit it...I have suggested that we stake out local politicians for lion bait, but I'm revising that now. Based on her incisive commentary on the "baiting" with pets, I suggest we cut the politicians some slack and stake out Ms. Keefover-Ring for the next kitty. Maybe toss in her boss, too. Nothing personal, or vitriolic; just practicing thoughtful stewardship and letting natural selection take its course. And if they disagree, that's their right, but that doesn't make it right.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Wocking & Wollings

Am camped out in Louisville for Knob Creek...I wanted to come back and do a couple of more episodes and get them the way I really wanted them. The episodes running now are good, but I am looking for great.

Went out to the range today and scoped out some of Kent Lamont's exquisite hardware...I swear he's got a Witness Protection 12-gauge that has my name on it. It wants to come home with me! No, really...

Am looking forward to lobbing some big fat .45-70s downrange from the new (and dreadfully expensive) el-slicko Gatlin Guns, as well as just seeing how many rounds I can get downrange.

If you're here in Louisville for Knob Creek, by all means grab me and say "hi!" I look forward to meeting you all!

Check out our pal Alphecca's People of the Gun's cool.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Great Day Shooting!

Today my Sweetie and I did something we haven't done in almost three years — we went shooting on the USFS land closest to our home!

The POSTED signs are down, and we decided today would be a GREAT day to do some cowboy action shooting. I decided to stick to .22s to ramp my Sweetie back up, so I used two Ruger Single Sixes and a Henry Golden Boy .22 lever action rifle. We worked with Action Targets "Evil Roy" portable plates — world class targets! Easy to schlepp around; fun to shoot on.

We did basic drills with the lever gun and the pistol...just plain fun.

And it's about time!

Today's PODCAST Will Be A Little Late...

...because of my vacation.

It should be up this afternoon!


Tuesday, October 09, 2007


...from a lovely long weekend in Taos and Santa Fe with my Sweetie!

Tomorrow, I'll regale you with complete meal listings for the great restaurants we hit.

In the meantime, I note that while I was gone the local kitty kat got sent to the Great Littlerbox in the Sky for snatching the wrong doggie:
Colorado wildlife officials are considering whether to recommend charges against a man who says he shot a mountain lion that was attacking his puppy. The shooting happened at about 1:30 a.m. Friday in a home near Gross Reservoir in Boulder County when the man was awakened by one of his dogs yelping outside. He grabbed a gun and went out to come face-to-face with a mountain lion. Jeremy Kocar said the cougar had his puppy in its mouth and was shaking it from side to side.

"I took the shot, and that was the end of it," Kocar told the Boulder Daily Camera.
Good job, Mr. Kocar! Only in a freakin' fantasyland like Boulder County would they even think about charging this guy with anything.

BTW, here's a list of most recent lion peskiness from the Boulder Camera and the Colorado Division of Wildlife:
There have been numerous mountain lion sightings, attacks and encounters in Boulder County this year.

Here are some:

Past week: Numerous residents living in the Nederland area reported dogs being attacked or killed by a mountain lion.

Sept. 27: A Nederland couple's 60-pound Australian shepherd was killed by a mountain lion.

Sept. 12-13: Multiple people reported seeing a mountain lion wandering in the area of 13th Street and Columbine Avenue in Boulder.

Sept. 2: A mountain lion killed a 15-year-old miniature horse seven miles west on Magnolia Road.

Aug. 29: A family's 7-year-old yellow Labrador was attacked by a mountain lion in northwest Boulder.

May 24: Wildlife officers killed a mountain lion in northwest Boulder after a resident reported the cougar in his backyard.

May 13: A couple's 16-pound cat, Big Guy, was killed by a mountain lion outside their home in the 3100 block of 11th Street.

April 12: Wildlife officers tranquilized a mountain lion caught feasting on a deer in north Boulder, in the 500 block of Kalmia Avenue.

Source: Camera archives and Division of Wildlife
I'll post when the Division os Wildlife decides whether to charge this homeowner or not. If they fine Kocar, I'll set up a tip jar to collect for his fine, because here is the simple truth...the "wilderness" ends at my property line. I like lions, but top-of-the-foodchain predators make spooky bedfellows.

Rather than a consciousness-raising seminar, which is what the resident nitwits will no doubt suggest, we need a limited hunting season on lions, to remind them who we are.

Sunday, October 07, 2007

A Few Days Off...

...will be back on-line rocking and rolling on Wednesday!

In the meantime, imagine the Democratic leadership on a tour of Iraq under their rules instead of Blackwater's rules...

"Hi, I'm a Democratic legislator and I wanted to aske you whether you"... BAM!

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Interesting BATFE Post...

...over on ARMS AND THE LAW:
I've received the attached pdf file (small, 134K) from someone in the know. It details ATF agents' complaints regarding how managers are conducting themselves. Here are a few snippets:

" Field agents have attempted to challenge the un-ethical, and illegal actions of field managers through various means in recent years only to meet with retaliation so destructive it almost inevitably results in the challenges or allegations being withdrawn."

" Fear of ATF leadership has replaced transparency. Lack of trust and the absence of good faith in trying to resolve these issues have caused a growing number of Agents to rely upon legal means to invoke the protections and seek redress. Record numbers of EEOC, OIG, OSC, whistleblower and internal grievances face the new management team. Requests for congressional intervention by Agents across the country..."

"The EEOC complaints over the last 2 years number in the hundreds. The overwhelming percentage of which contain allegations of retaliation. "

" First impressions in the field are that Acting Director Michael Sullivan is a competent and professional leader who possesses the skill to lead the Bureau of ATF&E. However, he continues to act on filtered information from those who have created these problems. These problems and those responsible must be dealt with before the Bureau can restore trust in it management team.
There's also an interesting article on gun control in Burma...say, that's worked well! This from Samizdata:
Burma is a good example of 'gun control', i.e. a state of affairs where firearms are a legal monopoly of the government forces. One side has good intentions and the other side has loaded rifles, and the result (so far) has been the same as it was in 1988 - or even back in 1962 when the late General Ne Win first set up his socialist administration.
Mo' later!

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Mr. Dead Run Guy

Sorry for the el-weako posting! I have been in a dead run, commuting back and forth from the Denver airport, where, of course, I am now.

IDPA Nationals were excellent! My congratulations to Match Director Ted Murphy and his excellent crew. Listen to tomorrow's podcast at DOWNRANGE for more details.

Also had a productive meeting with USFS officials and representatives of the Town of Nederland yesterday. I can't make any announcements until we finish the summation, but it's mostly good.

Also also, I wanted to mention picking up the Rock Island Armory 1911 .45 ACP "Tactical" model, distributed by SARCO...looks great; locks up like a vault; has a four-pound no el-creapo trigger (I'm apparently in an "el-" mood this AM); comes with excellent sights, safties, grips, an MSRP of around $389! Yikes! Lemme put some rounds through it before I start ringing bells in churches, but I am very impressed!

The new DOWN RANGE Giveaway gun goes up tomorrow! The ULTIMATE RUGER 10/22, from Tactical Solutions, Leupold and Boyd Gunstocks!

Check it out...btw, am on Safari and unable to attach links...which is why they're missing...