Monday, March 23, 2009

Gats and Heaters and Roscoes, Oh My!

Well, my friend Henning Wallgren — ace professional shooter for Tanfoglio, practical shooting champion in numerous countries, including the U.S. — has a slogan: Winning is a motivation, but having fun doing it is key.

I'm 100% on that, which is why I'm enthused at yet another of Henning's interests, the newly formed American Zoot Shooters Association. Here's the new sport's description from the website:
AZSA is a multi-gun sport in which participants dress in 1920s costumes and compete against the clock engaging targets for the best possible score. Zoot Shooters must use firearms that are correct for the time surrounding Prohibition. Costumes may be of any character type reflecting the era (i.e. gangster, law enforcement, flapper, bootlegger, politician, etc.).

The predominant AZSA guns are Thompsons and 1911 pistols but other firearms may be considered. Though many shooters may already own a 1911 type pistol, most probably do not own a Thompson sub-machine gun. Fortunately, Kahr/Auto-Ordnance is reproducing high quality semi-automatic Tommy Guns that do not require special permits. If you are lucky (or wealthy) enough to own a legally registered, full-auto Tommy by all means use it providing the host range will allow it!

The competitions have multiple stages referred to as Capers. Each Caper has a specific course of direction in which the shooter must safely engage targets in the quickest amount of time. Capers may reflect a moment in history, a scene from a movie or part of a story that gives a feeling of going back to a time when gangsters made Tommy Guns roar! Most importantly participants must be safe, maintain good sportsmanship and have fun.
Oh come on, Tactical Tommys, lighten's supposed to be fun! Shuck those 5.11s, the tactical vests, Oakley shades and boots, and that long-billed baseball cap with the SureFire logo and light up a nice Thompson!

Besides, while you can argue all you want about the efficacy of a Single Action Army as a self-defense tool, you gotta give it up for 1911 Super .38s, .45 Thompsons and that every-popular Browning A5/Remington Model 11.


Anonymous said...

Who you calling a tactical tommy?

I make you eat those words see!

You dirty rat!

Where's my custom grapefruit when I need it.

Anything that get people shooting is a good idea. Best of luck with it


Anonymous said...

Me thinks they have mixed the metaphor so to say...Zoot suits were a style of the 30's and 40's. Not the 1920's. A post WWI thug wouldn't be caught dead (ha ha) in such clothing. Zoot suits were big with the Hispanic crowd of the later decades (see Zoot suit riots).

Michael Bane said...

My friend Clyde gave me the BIG LECTURE on zoots, but HEY, it wasn't me who named the association!!!

I just want to wear a fedora...


Unknown said...

Hot Damn! Something to do with my Browning A5 with my 1925 vintage 20in cyl. bore barrel

Dave S. said...

Say, that looks like a real gas. I gotta get me one'a them Chicago typewriters and a roscoe and see if I can put a few dum-dums in them target's groceries.

George said...

Considering the Tommy is my favorite subgun, I like this sport. I would love to reenact the final moments of Bonnie and Clyde. Except I want to be on the outside with a Tommy or a BAR!

Anonymous said...

Ratcatcher, that would be a tactical grapefruit.

And if I join ASZA, does that mean I can use a BAR just like Bonnie & Clyde? How cool is that!

Who needs a .45ACP when you can spray .30-06.

Now all I have to do is find the cash to actually get one!

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

What! No blasphemers, although the prophet Thompson is a great man, let it be known that true oracle is John Browning. Even the squires know the steel hides of the beasts FORD and CHEVY were difficult to penetrate and that sometimes Sir Thompson failed at his task. But Browning with his superior Rifle, Caliber .30, Automatic, Browning, M1918 s cut down both rider and beast like King Arthur wields Excalibur.

Speak Brother R. LEE ERMEY of the greatness of the BAR!

Anonymous said...

Thanks, Michael! You just HAD to add fuel to my recent Tommy gun infactuation. Thanks a lot!


Haji said...

Interesting idea. I'm not really into the dress up angle of shooting, but if it gets more people out and competing, I'm all for it!

Anonymous said...

Another dress up and play game. Methinks this one won't do near as well as playing cowboy. Lot's of guys played cowboy and Indian as children. Few dressed up and played G-man and gangster.