A Nurse with a Gun

Monday, December 31, 2007

December Dirtbag

What the hell is Chicago attorney Jay R. Grodner's photo doing on Xavier's blog?

Go to Black Five to find out.



The Heckler & Koch P7 PSP

Back in 2004 an opportunity arose to order a HK P7 PSP (Polizei Selbstlade Pistole) recently released from the German police. The pistols were $645, complete with all brushes, tools and a plastic case. Extra magazines were around $15. I placed an order. Soon afterwards, a squeezecocker arrived at my FFL just for me.

I am not an HK fanboy, although I do still own the P7, and a couple more HK pistols. The Squeezecocker HK's are to some shooters like a streetlight is to a moth.Click to enlarge The striker fired pistol is made like a Swiss watch, and it is durable. There is no other pistol quite like the HK P7. It is an uniquely safe pistol, requiring the front of the grip to be firmly depressed before it can fire. One depressed, a very sweet trigger is engaged. The pistol is very slim, and it's fixed polygonal barrel makes it inherently accurate. It points very well, and has simple effective, easy to acquire sights.

The basis of the P7 design is a gas delayed blowback system. Gas pressure from cartridge ignition is routed through a small vent in the barrel directly forward of the fluted chamber. Recoil of the slide is controlled by the gases acting on a piston underneath the barrel. Once the bullet has exited the muzzle, the gas pressure is released behind it, and the slide can enter the recoil cycle.

At one time I carried my P7 PSP. The pistol carried very well. The only reason I stopped carrying it was I decided to go with the .45 ACP as a defense cartridge. The P7 is a 9mm gun. The P7 PSP has an eight round single stack magazine and a heel release. If I had won an ebay auction of a black alligator skin holster for it, I might still carry it on special occasions. I keep it in my accumulation because it is an unusual pistol to share with others, the ammunition is relatively inexpensive, and it is a great pistol for carry. There are other variants with different chamberings, some with a double stack magazine, and a magazine release behind the trigger, but I like the simplicity of the PSP.

The Cult of the P7


Sunday, December 30, 2007

When Jihad Strikes..........

Hat tip to Catfish


Ugly Gun Sunday

The Dresye Model of 1907 was a loathsome and anemic handgun even when new. Click to enlargeTop heavy, with a puny grip frame, it spit out the pipsqueak 7.65 mm round. Designed by Louis Schmeisser, it was one of the first striker fired pistols. The trotline weight pictured here has the additional asthetic improvemnents of finish removal, corrosive pitting, and cigarette burns on it's fractured grip panels. Screws have been replaced with more modern equivalents, rounding out the repulsive package.

I enjoy old curio and relic type handguns, and the Dresye Model of 1907 is one I do not own. It's weird and funky, which would make it an interesting addition to my accumulation of dusty rusty relics. A Dresye M1907 in decent condition usually changes hands for $250 or so. For me, that's a bit steep, even for a nice one. I'd really rather have one with some blemishes and history anyway. I do have my limits though. Had I seen this particular pistol at a gun show rather than an online auction, I might have purchased it. It's actually kind of charming, in an ancient relic sort of fashion. The cost of shipping and a transfer would exceed my final offer, however. For twenty bucks and a face to face deal, this one might find a new owner.......Me!

More ugly guns at Mauser Medic


Saturday, December 29, 2007

Serious Bar-B-Que

I like Model 28 Smith & Wesson revolvers. They are serious guns for serious men. Click to enlargeThus, when I came across this auction, initially, I was flabbergasted. How could anyone do such a thing?

The more I looked though, the more I liked. It's an apparent Texas Ranger gun. The engraving is absolutely stunning, and in a Texas motif. The grips are elephant ivory, with a gold Texas Ranger badge inlaid. Then, after more eyeballing, it became apparent that after the Highway Patrolman was cut and punched, it was hard chromed. Yes sir, yippee yi aye Skippy! If you're going to engrave a hard core service weapon, at least finish it in a hard core no nonsense finish. I suppose every Ranger needs a sidearm to go with his exotic Justins when he goes to church or an ice cream social. If I had $8,600.00 I might pick this one up after all.


Friday, December 28, 2007

The Ruger MKII

In 1949, small advertisements appeared in sporting magazines announcing a new pistol. "The first overall improvement in automatic pistol design since the Browning patent of 1905. For simplicity, strength, and handsomeness it has no equal." The pure audaciousness of Bill Ruger's advertisements in retrospect was absolutely on target. The Ruger Standard was a totally new concept for a .22 pistol. It had a tubular receiver with a bolt that fit inside. The receiver was secured atop a grip frame that was reminiscent of a Luger. The bullet exited a tapered barrel that further enhanced the Luger likeness. Some may have been confused over the Ruger name, thinking the pistol was a 22 caliber Luger, but the $37.50 price beat the pants off any other rimfire pistol on the market. Far from being a detriment, the Germanic styling gave the pistol a flair that was quickly assimilated into the American shooting culture. In 1950, the Ruger Target was quickly introduced with a six and 7/8 inch barrel, an adjustable rear sight, an under cut front sight blade to minimize glare, as well as an improved trigger.

The Ruger Standard and Target had no bolt hold back mechanism, and six groove, 1:14 right hand twist rifling in it's barrel. The heel released magazine contained nine rounds. The Ruger Standard stamped and welded grip frame was unique for it's time. It was the tubular receiver and the stamped and welded grip frame that kept the Ruger Standard's price below that of it's competitors. Click to enlargeAdorning the left grip panel was a red eagle medallion, derived from traditional European eagle motifs by Ruger’s partner, Alex Sturm. When Sturm died in 1951, the background for the eagle medallion was changed to black.

Over time, the Standard became available with a variety of barrel lengths, and adjustable sights. In 1971, the dies that the Strum-Ruger corporation used to stamp the grip frames finally wore out. New dies were formed allowing the magazine follower button to be on the left, rather than on the right as was the case with the earlier models. The new style grip frame was designated the A-100. Previous magazines would not fit in the A-100 grip frame, but the newer magazines fit both styles of pistol. The change was a portent of changes on the horizon.

In 1982, Bill Ruger added a bolt hold back mechanism, actuated by the flipped magazine button on the A-100 series pistols, and the Ruger MKII was born. The Ruger MKII, in all it's variations, is considered by many to be the pinnacle of Bill Ruger's achievements. For many older shooters, the Ruger Standard was the first auto-pistol they ever fired. The MKII introduced an entire new generation to the shooting sports. To commemorate the conclusion of the Ruger Standard era, Sturm-Ruger produced 5000 stainless steel Standard pistols engraved with Bill Ruger's signature on the receiver. Click to enlargeThe new MKII Rugers came with ten round magazines, making a dollar box of 50 rounds an even five magazine box. The safety of the MKII was designed as well to allow for a visual inspection of the chamber with the sear locked in place. Stainless steel MKII pistols were introduced in 1982, and a ten inch bull barrel model was added to the line-up in 1984. In 1986, the competition grade Mark II Government Target Model was released along with proof targets confirming it's accuracy. A slab side barreled version of the Government Target Model was introduced in 1991. It was designated the Competition Model.

1993 brought the Ruger 22/45, a polymer framed version with integral grip panels that replicated the grip angle of the venerable 1911. The 22/45 not only mimicked the 1911 in it's grip angle, but the magazine release was moved to the 1911 location, behind the hooked triggerguard.

Finally, in 2004, the MKII was superseded by the Ruger MKIII. The MKIII gave shooters the magazine release where many had wanted it, beside the triggerguard. Click to enlargeThe MKIII also incorporated some less desirable features, however, including a loaded chamber indicator, a magazine disconnect safety, and an internal locking device. While many new shooters may view the new innovations as improvements, older shooters frequently see them as unnecessary and unwanted gilding on a perfect lily.

In 1989, Bill Ruger made some unfortunate statements. In a letter to Congress, he suggested the implementation of a 10 round magazine for all semi-auto handguns, and a ban on the production of full capacity magazines. Bill Ruger later claimed "no honest man needs more than 10 rounds in any gun," in an interview with Tom Brokaw. Congress followed the suggestion and incorporated it into the Assault Weapons Ban of 1994. The AWB sunsetted on September 13, 2004. Bill Ruger died on July 6, 2002. Some gun owners still hold a grudge over those statements, but I figure Bill Ruger is dead and so is the legislation his words helped pass. The pistols his company produced are still some of the most enduring in the world.

Just like in 1949, the Ruger rimfire pistols remain an excellent value. I personally prefer the MKII above all others, but I will not pass on a nice Ruger Standard if I ever see one for sale again while my pockets still jingle. Click to enlargeI own several Ruger MKII's. Some I use to instruct new shooters, one I use for target shooting, and one I carry as a fishing pistol. I like to personalize my handguns a bit, and the MKII allows for that. I like a Volquartsen trigger and sear. I always keep an eye out for interesting grips, as well as used pistols.

When Ruger MKII pistols appear on the used gun market, they generally change hands for between $150 and $200, depending on finish condition. A used Ruger MKII is invariably a safe purchase, assuming the bore is not plugged with rust. The inherent durability and reliability of the design makes for a pawn shop treasure that frequently needs nothing done to it at all. At a time that ammunition costs are escalating with no end in sight, a 22 caliber pistol makes more sense than ever.

50 Years of Ruger Auto Pistols

Ruger MKII Dis/Re-assembly Instructions Detailed

Ruger MKII Internal Disassembly and Reassembly Instructions

Serial Numbers
Ruger Standard
1949 1
1950 2416
1951 11597
1952 32905
1953 49019
1954 68958
1955 97358
1956 115523
1957 128244
1958 148222
1959 169400
1960 179712
1961 194484
1962 217767
1963 239621
1964 250296
1965 276308
1966 406740
1967 436226
1968 463239
1969 10-00001
1970 10-38890
1971 10-75016
1972 11-26288
1973 11-72924
1974 12-22449
1975 12-81988
1976 13-48646
1977 13-99097
1978 14-69121
1979 15-36233
1980 16-06785
1981 16-82837
1982 17-70981

Ruger MKII
1982 18-00001
1983 18-50048
1984 19-31711
1985 211-13150
1986 212-08560
1987 212-91364
1988 213-90898
1989 214-85593
1990 215-61938
1991 216-68349
1992 217-48014 and 218-00001
1993 219-37950 and 218-05550
1994 219-90370 and 218-26000
1995 221-20943 and 218-45600
1996 221-36504 and 218-59250
1997 221-55005 and 218-68650
1998 221-95002 and 218-95440
1999 222-36510
2000 223-42679
2001 224-21283
2002 224-82446
2003 225-18909
2004 225-60111
2005 225-84467

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Thursday, December 27, 2007

Missing Something?

The National Rifle Association has hired private investigators to find hundreds of people whose firearms were seized by city police in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, according to court papers filed this week. The NRA is trying to locate gun owners for a federal lawsuit that the lobbying group filed against Mayor Ray Nagin and Police Superintendent Warren Riley over the city's seizure of firearms after the Aug. 29, 2005, hurricane.

In the lawsuit, the NRA and the Second Amendment Foundation claim the city violated gun owners' constitutional right to bear arms and left them "at the mercy of roving gangs, home invaders, and other criminals" after Katrina. The NRA says the city seized more than 1,000 guns that weren't part of any criminal investigation after the hurricane. Police have said they took only guns that had been stolen or found in abandoned homes.

NRA lawyer Daniel Holliday said investigators have identified about 300 of the gun owners and located about 75 of them. Some of them could be called to testify during a trial, he added. "Finding these folks has been a nightmare," Holliday said. "That is really the guts of our case — to establish that there was indeed a pattern of the police going out and taking people's guns without any legal reason to do so."

In April 2006, police made about 700 firearms available for owners to claim if they could present a bill of sale or an affidavit with the weapon's serial number. An attorney for the city and a police department spokesman didn't return a reporter's telephone calls Wednesday.

Alan Gottlieb, founder of the Bellevue, Wash.-based Second Amendment Foundation, said the police department has returned only about 100 of the 1,000 seized guns. "Obviously, we don't expect the city to find everybody. We only wanted to see a good-faith effort, and that's what the city didn't do," Gottlieb added. "It's a bad example to let them get away with it."

In court papers filed Monday, NRA attorneys say finding the gun owners has been difficult because the storm has scattered so many residents. New Orleans had an estimated 455,000 residents before Katrina, but less than two-thirds of that number live there now. The NRA is asking for a delay in the trial, set to begin Feb. 19, saying they need more time to find gun owners. U.S. District Judge Carl Barbier had not yet ruled on the request Wednesday.

By Michael Kunzelman, Associated Press Writer

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Cabela's, the world's foremost outfitter, recently placed a .38 special firearm up on the internet for $699. The list it as a "Smith & Wesson U.S. Airforce Lightweight in 38 Special":Click to enlarge
Smith & Wesson U.S. Airforce Lightweight in 38 Special. In 1953 the Air Force purchased a large quanity of Model 12s with alloy cylinders and frames. Smith and Wesson didn't designate the handgun Model 13 but the Air Force stamped M13 on the top strap. They were rejected do to alloy failures and most were destroyed by the government. Backstrap worn or may have been buffed. Stamped "US Property".
Click to enlargeThe serial number of the Cabela's revolver falls into the correct range. The revolver appears to be a four screw gun. The barrel lacks the "AIRCREWMAN" rollmark. It has "U.S. Property" stamped on the backstrap and then rubbed out. At right is a picture of my demilled M-13 Aircrewman frame to compare the topstrap markings. It has "PROPERTY OF U.S. AIR FORCE" stamped on the backstrap. Go here for more information. Draw your own conclusions.

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Wednesday, December 26, 2007

The Jeff Cooper Commemorative

The day before yesterday, I picked up the recent Guns and Ammo rag publication "The Complete Book of the 1911" to read between glasses of egg nog and Christmas rum. It seems ol' Patrick Sweeney has been shooting a commemorative firearm.......

When Colonel Cooper passed away over a year ago, it was inevitable that a Jeff Cooper 1911 Commemorative would hit the market bearing his signature, legitimate or not. I am pleased to see that Ed Brown has attempted to do it right, producing a true commemorative in a pistol that the old gent himself might have carried. It looks suspiciously like the Ed Brown Special Forces pistol with different grips and rollmarks, but no matter....

Unlike usual commemorative pistols, the finish is not nickel and gold. There is no likeness of the old man kneeling beside his largest caribou kill engraved and gold plated on the slide. Instead Brown produced a black pistol with serrations on only one end of the slide. It has Cooper's signature on one side, and DVC (Diligentia, Vis, Celeritas) on the reverse. A single sided thumb safety makes it appropriate for carry. A leather bound volume of Jeff Cooper's "Principles of Personal Defense" is included with the gun. I think I would take off that magazine extension or smack in a Wilson 47D with a low profile base pad though.

Alas, I must be out of the loop. Ed mailed off a pistol to Pat to shoot, but my mailbox has been empty. If I had $2,295 worth of spare pocket jingle, I might buy one instead of waiting. Alas though, I believe the Cooper Commemorative is destined to just be placed photographically in my Custom 1911 screensaver file instead of my safe. Maybe if I ebayed off all the ugly ties black socks and drugstore cologne I got for Christmas........

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Monday, December 24, 2007

Happy Holidays

If you are a reader here, and you haven't yet joined The High Road, I encourage you to do so.

Merry Christmas!

Straight No Chaser

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Gehorchen Sie dem Deutschen Schaeferhund!

Ilsa and Darla have directed me to go to Obey the Purebreed and purchase clothing and mugs. If you are managed by a canine type dictator, do not let them view this website. Your pocketbook will suffer.


Ugly Gun Sunday

Click to enlargePimps don't seem to go for 1911's. They consider the old war horse to be an old man's gun. Thus, when I first saw this abomination, I thought "How stupid. No pimp will buy that." Then I examined it a bit more closely. I noted the hogged out ejection port extending below the rollmark on the slide. I spotted the ambi-safety on a pistol that was made more diminutive for concealed carry. The slide stop has been thoroughly weakened for no reason other than appearance. A checkered speed bump is at the base of the grip safety to abrade the hand.

And then the color.......Oh God, the color. When John Moses said blue the damned thing, he did not mean this! Two toned pistols are frequently garish enough, but the Delft blue frame of this pistol is only surpassed by the woven multi colored carbon fiber grip panels. Pistols should not wear kilts! The whole conglomeration makes me wonder if it was a bespoke custom pistol for a dimwitted Scottish pimp running a Dutch brothel. Unfortunately even his girls would laugh at the sight of this pistol.

I suppose the trigger might be salvageable.........

More ugly guns at Mauser Medic



Mauser Girl reminds us again that chocolate is poisonous to dogs.

Be careful what you treat your pooch with this holiday season. A big assed bone or chopped liver will do just fine...........


Saturday, December 22, 2007

The Colt Woodsman

The Colt Woodsman was Hartford's premier .22 caliber pistol. Designed by John Moses Browning, the Woodsman was produced from 1915 to 1977. Collectors divide up the 62 year Woodsman production into three different frame types, designating them as series one, two and three. The first series refers to all Woodsmen built before and during World War Two. Click to enlargeThe second series includes all versions from late 1947 until mid 1955, and third series Woodsmen extend from 1955 to the end of regular production in 1977. Within the three primary groups the Woodsman had many variations from a campground plinker to a match quality pistol.

My two Series One Woodsmen are pictured at left. The upper pistol, a 1940 gun, was a gift from a friend. Although rebarreled and refinished, it is priceless to me. The lower pistol, manufactured in 1942, was purchased at a pawn shop two years ago with it's holster for $250. Today, Colt Woodsmen seem to start around $500 when they are found in the marketplace. The price quickly goes up to a grand and above for examples with pristine finishes. The extended "elephant ear" grips often go for near that price at auction.

Woodsmen manufactured prior to 1933 were intended to use standard velocity ammunition. Those pistols produced after that time are safe to use with high velocity .22 ammo. Marilyn MonroeA quick way to verify which pistol you have is to look at the mainspring housing. A Woodsman requiring standard velocity ammunition will have a checkered area on the mainspring housing. On later high velocity pistols, this area will be serrated.

Recently classified as a curio and relic firearm by the BATF, the Colt Woodsman is an elegant and accurate pistol. It is also a light pistol compared with those of today, and it's grip is shorter and at a more rakish angle than many pistols today. The design allows for an impressive trigger. The grip angle and sight radius makes for a very pointable, accurate pistol.

If you are fortunate enough to encounter a Colt Woodsman for sale at an attainable price, make certain it is complete. Parts are becoming more and more scarce. A missing front sight blade can result in months of searching. Reasonably priced grip slabs and original magazines can also be elusive. Make certain you get the original Colt magazine with the pistol. The aftermarket magazines just do not feed ammunition properly.

Because of it's relatively small grip frame, I have found the Series One Woodsman to be the ideal pistol for teaching children and adults with small hands to shoot. It fits their hands. It is accurate and reliable enough that frustration is eliminated. The novice shooter can simply concentrate on technique. The pistol does not have an empty magazine holdback mechanism. Little DarlingThis can be a good thing. It teaches the neophyte to open the chamber and visually check to see if the pistol is loaded. With proper instruction, the Colt Woodsman helps develop a safe and proficient marksman.

Many new shooters at a gun counter are prone to look at a $500 price tag on an old Woodsman and declare "I could get a Glock for that!" That is true. The Woodsman, however, will reliably place an inexpensive hole exactly where it is aimed. A shooter can shoot all day for under ten bucks. Lead downrange coupled with analysis of why it went where it did equals developing marksmanship. The greater the quantity of lead and the more precise the analysis, the faster the development of the novice shooter. The Colt will appreciate in value over the next five years, while the used Glock will resale for roughly half of it's new counter price. More importantly, the Colt Woodsman will allow the new shooter to easily learn the fundementals of pistol craft without any hurdles to conquer. Cheap to shoot, accurate, low recoil, durable, and steadily increasing in value. It's a pistol that appeals to new shooters, is beloved by experienced shooters, and cherished by collectors. What is there not to like?

More information on the Colt Woodsman can be found on Bob Rayburn's Colt Woodsman pages.

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This morning I awoke to my pager's beep.

I'm not on call.



Friday, December 21, 2007

Friendly Dogs

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Thursday, December 20, 2007

Huckabee on the 2nd Amendment

He gets it!

He has a sense of humor too.

I could stand to ride in the same pick-up truck as this man, I think........



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Public Service Message

Hat tip Phlegm Fatale


Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Reservoir Dogs

I confess. I don't like cuddly fuddly chick flicks. I like exploding wham bam shoot 'em up guy movies. I like Quentin Tarantino movies. When it comes to guy movies, few can surpass Quentin Tarantino's 1992 directorial debut, Reservoir Dogs. Like the characters themselves, Reservoir Dogs came out of no where. In typical Tarantino form, the film does not move linearly. The storyboard shuffles forward and back in time to reveal information about the characters to take the viewer on an unexpected journey of story telling.

Reservoir Dogs is not for the faint of heart. It is a bloody, vile, gritty story without redemption. My wife doesn't like it. At all. The story begins with a group of men having breakfast and animatedly discussing the lyrics of the Madonna song, "Like a Virgin." The discussion then turns towards the social courtesy of tipping waitresses. My wife found the dialogue to be offensive and left to delve into her latest crime novel. As a man, I found the conversation vaguely familiar.

A rough cast of then unknown actors play a group of criminals unknown to each other. They are brought together by Joe, an established criminal leader to pull off the "perfect crime." Only things go wrong. Horribly wrong. We never see what happens inside the bank. Instead we see the result. We see criminals running like rats, fighting to survive, turning on each other, all the while trying to determine just what went wrong. None of the actors are leading man types. They all look like the guy who might be selling shoes in the Women's Department of the local department store.

The sordid story is not only driven by masterful direction, but also by Steven Wright's voice as K-Billy playing the "Super Sounds of the 70s", a soundtrack that can only be described as quintessentially cool. Mr. Blonde, Mr. Blue, Mr. Pink, Mr. Orange, Mr. White, Mr. Brown, Nice Guy Eddie, and Joe all come together to present a film that absolutely transformed the movies produced in Hollywood. Said critic Jami Bernard at Sundance: "I don't think people were ready. They didn't know what to make of it. It's like the first silent movie when audiences saw the train coming toward the camera and scattered."

If you liked other Tarantino films, but have not yet watched Reservoir Dogs, you have a treat coming your way. Get it. Watch it. Every dog has his day.


Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Humpback Hammers

Starting in the 1930's Smith & Wesson offered a special order hammer on some revolvers. The Humpback Hammer is most commonly seen on .357 magnum revolvers, but it is occasionally encountered on the Military & Police revolver as well. It is distinquished by it's flat top, and it's fine checkering from front to back. The Humpback Hammer is a very desirable Smith & Wesson option on a wheelgun sought after by collectors. The presence of this option can today raise the price of a revolver by a hundred dollars or more.

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Monday, December 17, 2007

The Ruger 10/22

I'm a big fan of the Ruger 10/22. I'm an even bigger fan of getting a sub-hundred dollar gun at a pawn shop, and turning it into a tackdriver. The Ruger 10/22 has been around for over four decades. It is a staple of a child's progression to becoming a rifleman, and it is only surpassed by the 1911 as the most customized firearm of all time. The Ruger 10/22 rifle has a near cult-like following of people who invest more in accessories than the rifle retails for, all in pursuit of one hole groups at fifty yards.

At last count, I had nine 10/22s in my home. These range from an all out tackdriving fantasy rifle to an ancient "super stock" 10/22 with an aluminum buttplate, a "no warning" blue tapered barrel and a walnut carbine stock. The only modifications to the "super stock" is a set back match chamber, a bedded action, trigger work, and a recessed target crown on the floated original barrel. Among those nine rimfire rifles residing in my home are a purple metalflake carbine with a youth stock for my daughter, an adjustable stock target rifle for my wife, Turtle guna "Wally World Special", and the first rifle my son ever built, a Hogue overmolded stocked 10/22 he used to take squirrels.

My "Turtle Gun" was so named after an afternoon of executing turtles in a pond about 75 yards from the back porch. Modifications include a Barracuda stock, Magnum Research carbon fiber barrel and Volquartsen hammer, sear, and magazine release. The rest of the action was polished, an auto bolt release was installed along with a bolt buffer, and the firing pin was pinned. The trigger group is bedded. The Turtle Gun's glass is a Nikon Monarch 6.5-20X44 scope mounted on Weaver 4X4 rings. This rifle was bought as a $100 pawn shop stainless carbine. All that remains of the original firearm is the bolt and the receiver.

The genius in the Ruger 10/22 is it's modularity. The barrel is held in place by a wedge block retained by two Allen screws. The trigger group is secured to the receiver by two cross pins. The stock is attached with a single screw. As an out of the box .22 rifle, the Ruger 10/22 is admittedly not as accurate as others in it's class, such as the Marlin 60 and the CZ bolt action target rifles, but it has a distinct advantage. It is reliable, durable, and incredibly "handy". It is accurate enough. When the owner becomes bored with the firearm, or when cabin fever drives him to madness, he can open a Midway catalog and order enough goodies to totally transform the little plinker into a precision rifle that will keep ten rounds on a Xeroxed quarter at 75 yards.

This 10/22 rifle started life as a $109 Deluxe 10/22 I found in a pawn shop. Silhouette RugerThe stock is a Fajen Silhouette in orange, green and teal. The barrel is a 20" Whistle Pig matte aluminum, free floated in the stock. The trigger group is bedded. The action has been polished with an auto bolt release, Volquartsen magazine release, and bolt buffer. The bolt has been chamfered and the firing pin pinned. The rifle is scoped with a Nikon 4X32 Prostaff secured by Weaver 4X4 rings.

Many adult shooters grew up with the Ruger 10/22. Those who have shot them compulsively invariably begin to modify them. I thought I had done all there was to do with a Ruger 10/22. Then, I read that Ruger may have finally produced what many 10/22 shooters had always dreamed of.......A 10/22 pistol. I just might have to wander back into a gun store.......

If the gunnie in your life still needs something for Christmas, buy them a Ruger 10/22. Then order a Midway and Brownells catalog to find Christmas presents in the years to come. It's guaranteed to put a smile on their face.

More info:
Ruger 10/22: From Factory To Fantasy
Rimfire Central
Joe's Trigger Group Modifications
Ruger's Serial Number Database

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Sunday, December 16, 2007

Physician Education

When was the last time you were asked by your physician if you had guns in your home? It is no secret that many medical and nursing professional organizations espouse anti-gun and anti-self defense agendas. Guidelines issued by the American Academy of Pediatrics even encourage doctors to ask your children about guns in their homes.

Today, I learned about Doctors For Sensible Gun Laws. This organization, founded by Dr. William B. Rogers is taking on the professional groups who have sided with the anti-gun lobby. A quote from a letter to the American Psychiatric Association:
"To treat firearms violence as a medical issue in an effort to push for further gun control is absolutely ludicrous, when all the relevant research in the field of criminology reveals a net benefit to society of gun ownership."
"As physicians, we must be advocates for our patients. Embarrassingly often, we have advocated "treatments" without full knowledge of the facts (therapeutic bloodletting comes to mind). And while lack of research and scientific knowledge might be a partial excuse, that certainly isn't the case with gun-control, where solid research has been done, but organizations like the APA ignore this research because it doesn't fit their preconceived ideas."

The doctors affiliated with Doctors For Sensible Gun Laws also discuss what a patient can do when a nurse or physician pushes his or her own political agenda regarding firearms. Known as boundary violations, these inappropriate questions and inaccurate declarations are highly unprofessional and take advantage of the therapeutic relationship that should exist between nurses, physicians and patients. For many gun owners, the ignorant accusatory condemnations that make up this type of interview destroys trust and fills the relationship with justifiable suspicion and even hostility.

Nurses and physicians need to get out of the gun control business. By allowing gun control advocates to be lead them around by the nose, they lose credibility among the patients they serve. I am blessed to be living in a free state, one that cherishes the second amendment, regardless of what happened in Louisiana's own San Francisco known locally as Nawlins. I know and shoot with many physicians and nurses. The professional organizations that seek to strip us of our rights do not represent them, or myself. Many of us refuse to join, much less pay dues to such a group. That though, will not bring about change. More than enough gun ignorant nurses and physicians are available to keep the funds coming to support those at the top of the bureaucracy of health care.

What will make a difference is educating doctors and nurses and hospital administrators. One by one. It seems a daunting task, but each time a gun owner submits to these types of interviews without effective protest, ground is lost. Print a copy of this form. Hand it to your doctor or nurse when they try to intrude upon your privacy and your constitutional rights. Doctors For Sensible Gun Laws also has a polite letter and an angry letter prepared as templates to mail your physician if such a boundary violation has already occurred. Do not simply avoid your physician or find another physician, educate the one you have. Until we educate health care providers in large numbers, political winds will continue to influence them, and as a result the care we all receive.

First, do no harm. What a concept. Doctors need to stick with it.

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Saturday, December 15, 2007

In Boston..........




"You like to fire assault weapons? I have a place for you. It's not in the homes and streets of America. It's called the Army, and you can join any time!"
Wesley Clark

"There is no right to have access to the weapons of war in the streets of America. For those who want to wield those weapons, we have a place for them. It is the US military. And we welcome them."
John Kerry

"Germans who wish to use firearms should join the SS or the SA. Ordinary citizens don't need guns, as their having guns doesn't serve the State."
Heinrich Himmler


Board Tracker

During the Summer of this year I located an old 1920's Elgin bicycle frame. It was structurally solid and was encased in multiple layers of enamel, laquer and dried grease and oil. Click to enlargeIt was, however, basically complete, with the original seat, seat post, skip tooth chainwheel, forks, gooseneck and handlebars.

In the days when this bicycle was new, boardtrack racing was the coliseum sport of America. Even though automobiles puttered about town at 35 MPH, on the outskirts of towns were high banked oval tracks made of two by fours. On these oil soaked boards primitive motorcycles raced at speeds over 100 MPH.........With no brakes.

Today I combined spare parts in the garage with the ancient Elgin frame to make a bicycle. I only have to order up a few minor parts now, but I rode the bike for the first time. I'm not certain which direction this project will take, but the old boardtrack motorcycles are inspiring me. The Elgin bicycle will be reminescent of those machines.

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Friday, December 14, 2007

The Remaking of Jeanne Assam

It seems the mainstream media has a hard time accepting the idea that a concealed weapons carrier can stop a massacre in progress. I'm not surprised. Even though the pastor of the New Life Church explained the position of his members who carry handguns in church, the media continues to portray Jeanne Assam as a security guard. She wore no uniform. She received no pay. She worshiped there by choice. Her only duty was to God, her fellow parishioners, and to her own conscience. Jeanne AssamShe was a private citizen with a gun, not a hired security guard.

More recently, not being able to acknowledge the fact that a private citizen in the right place with a gun and the readiness necessary to use it effectively put an end to what police and gun free zones could not, the mainstream media has sought to discredit Ms. Assam. By digging up skeletons in her past, they are painting her as a disgraced police officer. A decade ago, Jeanne Assam was terminated by her superiors from the Minneapolis police force for not being truthful during an internal investigation.
Sgt. Jesse Garcia, a Minneapolis police spokesman, said Jeanne Assam worked at the department from March 1993 to November 1997. She was fired for lying during an internal investigation. Sgt. John Delmonico, president of the Police Officers Federation of Minneapolis, said police were investigating a complaint that Assam swore at a bus driver while she was handling an incident on a city bus.

"In giving a statement about the incident, she was untruthful and she was fired," Delmonico said. The swearing was caught on tape, he said. "The union arbitrated the case and the arbitrator upheld the termination."
They say nothing, absolutely nothing about Sgt. Jesse Garcia's hand in the publication of Ms. Assam's private personnel file.

It is not uncommon after a shooting for the righteous survivor to be reviled by the ignorant. Friends may ostracize the survivor. Relatives may disassociate with them. People whisper behind their back at church and in check-out lines at the supermarket. Rumors circulate. Reputations become tarnished. Old bones are examined by the ignorant trying to find the difference between the survivor and other people. Here's a tip for those who want to know the difference...........There is none. None. The righteous survivor is just like you, or me. They are a person struggling with day to day life, who managed to survive through their own determination to persevere and live and perhaps save a few others in the process. What the ignorant fail to realize is the righteous survivor of a lethal encounter was an unwilling participant in the act of saving their own life or the lives of others. The righteous survivor did not leave home with the intent to kill. It was forced upon them. The righteous survivor did not prepare to kill. They prepared to live.

After a shooting, a righteous survivor goes through much internal turmoil. At the very least they question what they could have done to avoid the event, and if their preparation in any way brought this new and unwanted identity to their lives. At worst they may contemplate and commit suicide. While the legal entanglements are inevitable, the emotional storms of self doubt and questioning are no less imminent.

The media makes their bread and butter by building people up and then tearing them down. Make an icon, then make an outcast. Many people will say the media leads the masses. No. The masses lead the media in the dance of influencing perceptions. If we do not accept the tripe they hawk as truth and reality, they lose their ability to influence. Truth is not on the newspaper pages. Truth is not on the six o-clock report, and it is not on the internet. Truth will be found within ourselves.

We need to stop looking at righteous survivors, people who have lived by regrettably taking the lives of others, as being somehow different. They are human with the same frailties and foibles as the rest of us. They are no different than the person who has faced and survived cancer, a devastating automobile accident, or any other life threatening encounter. They took action and they lived. The morbid curiosity of dark and unknown places that threaten us, that inner fear of our own immortality within each of us, should not compel us to harm another person while they are at their most vulnerable, assimilating a new, inescapable conception of themselves, and trying to rebuild their life from the confusing aftermath of a righteous shooting.

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Thursday, December 13, 2007

Heart Attack on a Plate

The Persistance of Denial

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Jeanne Assam's Story

You never know when it's going to happen. Violence will never be removed from human society. Even if all firearms were banned, violence will still erupt. Vermin who seek to force their will on others, or to inform the world of their pathetic and pathological pleas for attention as they remove themselves from their own misery, will need to be dealt with. They will need to be dealt with swiftly, surely, and with the greatest of regard towards the safety of those whom they threaten.

Jeanne Assam may not have thought it was her day to be called upon as she got ready to go to Sunday service in Colorado Springs, Colorado. Never the less, she armed herself with her handgun. Jeanne Assam was granted a concealed carry permit by her state government, a right to self preservation that should be indisputably guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution. Over the years, this right had been eroded by ill guided thinking and politics, but in the past decade the right to keep and bear arms had made a resurgence. Jeanne Assam took advantage of new laws that gave her greater options to defend her own life as well as the lives of others. Because she is a community oriented individual, Jeanne Assam also was willing to place her life at risk to prevent the killing of innocents.

Twelve hours earlier, Matthew Murray had slain two people at a missionary training center, Youth with a Mission, sixty five miles away. Murray was still at large. Ms. Assam was aware of that fact, but that is not why she carried a gun. Jeanne Assam may have strapped a Glock under her jacket. She may have placed a .38 snubbie into her purse. The handgun and her mode of carry really does not matter. Ms. Assam says she was weak from a three day religious fast as she left her home on December 9, for the New Life Church. She had not slept since learning of the previous shootings. She was not weak though. She was not armed with only a handgun. She was armed with the will to use the handgun in the defense of herself and others. Her body may have felt weak, but her conviction and determination was resolute. Along with the pistol, that would be enough.

The wolf violently invaded the flock before Jeanne Assam arrived on the scene. Stephanie and Rachael Works lay dying. Their father, David Works, and Judy Purcell were wounded. A Vietnam combat veteran, Larry Bourbonnais, had found himself unarmed facing the murderer's fury. Two armed security guards, with guns drawn, were frozen, facing an unchecked killer, not acting. Bourbonnais pleaded with one of the men to relinquish his firearm so that a man with the will to kill might be able to persevere against overwhelming and deadly force. The armed man did not respond, continuing to hold a drawn handgun on a frenzied psychopath as though it were some talisman against evil.

Armed only with words, Mr. Bourbonnais used what he had. "First, I called him 'Coward' then I called him 'Shithead.' I probably shouldn't have been saying that in church," said Mr. Bourbonnais told the Denver Post. The gunman turned his assault on Bourbonnais, who survived only by finding concealment behind a non-metaphorical hollow, decorative pillar. Bourbonnais was struck in the arm.

Then another pillar appeared. Not a decorative one, this pillar was a pillar of immutable strength. Jeanne Assam entered the church hallway, approaching the deranged killer, demanding that he surrender....Now. The wolf turned a handgun on the approaching sheepdog. He managed to fire off three shots. Jeanne Assam responded with conviction and courageous determination to live and save others from death as she continued to close on the killer, firing off shot after shot into his body, emptying her gun and putting an end to his bloody rampage.

"I saw him, it seemed like the halls cleared out, and I saw him coming through the doors, and I took cover. I waited for him to get closer, I came out of cover, and I identified myself. I engaged him and I took him down," Jeanne Assam said modestly at a news conference in the Colorado Springs police station. "I didn't think it was my sole responsibility. I didn't think about this. It was, it seemed like it was, me, the gunman and God."

"I didn't run away, and I didn't think for a minute to run away. I just knew that I was given the assignment to end this before it got too much worse," she said. "I just prayed for the Holy Spirit to guide me. I said, 'Holy Spirit, be with me.' My hands weren't even shaking. Honestly, I was very focused, and it was chaotic and it was so loud. I'll never forget the gunshots. It was so loud. I was just focused and I knew I wasn't going to wait for him to do any further damage. I just knew what I had to do."

Sgt. Jeff Johnson of the Colorado Springs Police Department reported that Matthew Murray was carrying two handguns, a rifle, and close to 1,000 rounds of ammunition. He obviously had plans. Investigators have said that Murray, 24, may have, in fact, died of a self inflicted gunshot wound. Autopsies should be cold and clinical things, based on factual evidence and removed from the shifting sands of human interaction. That is well and good. Murray may have brought about his own end. It is indisputable, however, that his killing spree was brought to an abrupt halt by a woman with steel determination, the will to to preserve lives, and a handgun.

George Orwell once said: "People sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf." Sometimes the sheepdog is neither rough, nor a man. That is as it should be. Introduce a woman to shooting today. The life she saves may be your own.

Syd's thoughts
Ahab's thoughts
Justin's thoughts
Deb's thoughts
Michelle's thoughts

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Tuesday, December 11, 2007

A Reminder......



"War is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things. The decayed and degraded state of moral and patriotic feeling which thinks that nothing is worth war is much worse. The person who has nothing for which he is willing to fight, nothing which is more important than his own personal safety, is a miserable creature and has no chance of being free unless made and kept so by the exertions of better men than himself."

- John Stuart Mill
- English economist & philosopher
(1806 - 1873)


Monday, December 10, 2007

Gun Free Zone

Sunday, December 09, 2007

More on the Pasadena Perps

It seems a plainclothes Pasadena detective had just arrived on the scene and was an eye witness to the shotgun shooting of Hernando Riascos Torres (Miguel Antonio DeJesus) and Diego Ortiz in Pasadena Texas by Joe Horn.Hernando Riascos Torres (Miguel Antonio DeJesus) and Diego Ortiz Police are investigating whether the two toe tagged Johnnys were part of a crime ring linked to burglaries and the use of fake immigration documents.

Further, Leticia Zamarripa, a spokeswoman for the Bureau of Immigration and Customs Enforcement, states the two Columbians were in the United States illegally. The pockets of the leaky Ortiz contained a Puerto Rican identification card. Ortiz had two aliases. Torres had identification cards from Colombia, Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic. He had three aliases. Men of the world.....The white bag the men stole from a home in the 7400 block of Timberline contained almost $2,000 in cash.

So let me get this straight.......American crack dealer and Black Panther hate monger Quanell X supports Diego Ortiz and Hernando Riascos Torres because they are were.....Quanell X.Thieves in the night? Or is it because they are were Columbians entering the U.S. illegally to commit crimes? Is it because they are were Bogata Muslims? Is it because they are men stiffs of a dark toned skin? Is it because Mr. Horn is Caucasian? Or is there another connection......Perhaps his distress is because the owners of the house Ortiz and Torres robbed are legal immigrants with Vietnamese surnames? Maybe it is because Quanell X needs racist injustice to eat. So.......Quanny, how about the racist injustice of two black thugs targeting immigrants and breaking into a dwelling owned by law abiding oriental business people to steal their hard earned money? The truth doesn't fit does it?

"Mr. Horn did not have to kill those men. We believe that Mr. Horn became judge jury and executioner at the same time," declared Mr. X over a bullhorn in front of Joe horn's home on December 2, 2007. Fine Mr. X. Believe what you want. Just get the hell off the man's grass.

"Just because a cat gave birth to kittens in the oven don't make them biscuits." - Quanell X

Just because a white man kills two black thieves in Texas doesn't make it a racist event you bigot.

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Ugly Gun Sunday

A poor Smith & Wesson Model 36 Chief's Special with a pinned three inch barrel. With some forest green grips and some mince meat ammo it could be a Christmas gun perfect for any fruit cake! You can Buy It Now on Gun Broker for $350........Or you can pass.

My advice.......Pass.

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Kalashnikov vs BB Gun

Mesa, Arizona -- She was asleep when Gricel Ruelas was suddenly awakened by a crash in the night. The fifteen year old girl let out a scream when the home invaders burst into her bedroom. She was grabbed by the hair and dragged away from the closet she was trying to hide in. The men brandished a Kalashnikov style rifle, holding it to her head.

Arming himself with a BB gun and a firm resolve to protect his daughter, her father, Leonardo Lucia appeared to face down the criminals. The intruder with the rifle dropped his gun and ran. Daniel Lopez, a parolee did not retreat. Daniel LopezHe was held by Lucia and an uncle until police arrived on the scene.

Lopez was taken into custody and booked into jail on suspicion of first-degree burglary, aggravated assault and criminal damage. Thus far charges of attempted kidnapping have not been filed. Police have not yet captured his partner in crime.

When seconds count, the police are only minutes away. When men like Daniel Lopez decide to pillage a man's family and property in the middle of the night, a firm resolve is necessary to repel the attack. A real firearm helps as well. Thank God the determination of Mr. Lucia and company as well as the fear and uncoordinated attack of the assailants made up for his lack of firepower. The best BB gun for a home invader is this one.

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Not News

Click to enlarge

John Lott points out a relationship between shopping mall shootings and school shootings........


Saturday, December 08, 2007

Pearl Harbored

On December 7, 2007, Pearl Harbor Day, Bradley A. Blakeman, CEO and President of Freedom’s Watch, had this to say about NBC’s refusal to air the organization’s holiday messages supporting and thanking our troops, “The fact that FreedomsWatch.org appears in a TV spot thanking our troops stationed around the world this holiday season does not justify their refusal and reeks of censorship. NBC’s decision is sad and unfortunate.” CNN and Fox News and will continue running the messages of support through December 21. Below is a letter sent to John Kelly, NBC Vice-President of News Network Sales, demanding an explanation of why NBC refuses to air the ads.

December 7, 2007

John Kelly
Senior Vice-President of NBC News Network Sales
30 Rockefeller Plaza
12th Floor
New York, NY 10112

Dear Mr. Kelly,

We understand that NBC, MSNBC and CNBC (the “Networks”) are refusing to sell advertising time to Freedom’s Watch (“FW”) to air a series of advertisements that thank our troops for their service and encourage the American public to show their appreciation for the sacrifices they have made on behalf of our country. It is our understanding that the purported basis for the denial is the Networks’ demand that FW remove reference on the advertisement to the FW website.

Given your past rejection of FW advertisements in August 2007 and your history of airing ads addressing controversial issues, as addressed in detail in my correspondence to you of August 28, 2007 (to which we have received no response), we are left to believe that your denial to FW is a subjective decision because the network officials disagree with FW. It is hard to comprehend how your demand to remove the FW website is anything but direct censorship of the positions taken by FW, particularly our support for the War on Terror. It is highly troubling that the Networks favor censorship over airing a magnanimous effort to thank the many men and women of our Armed Services who protect our freedoms every day.

FW has requested to purchase time on your networks to air advertisements thanking our American troops for their service and for spending time away from their family and friends this Holiday season. The FW website, www.freedomswatch.org, provides information to the American public about numerous ways to support our troops. For example, the FW website provides readers with links to Books for Soldiers, Adopt a Platoon and other worthy causes dedicated to assisting our troops during this Holiday season.

It is deeply troubling that the Networks appear to be rejecting an effort to air messages that thank our troops for their sacrifice and, in so doing, remind Americans of the sacrifices made by them this Holiday season. An effort to thank our troops should not be silenced by national broadcast and cable networks. Your denial begs the question of whether the Networks disagree with FW and, due to the level of your disagreement, you would prefer to censor FW’s effort to thank our troops and encourage an outpouring of support from the American people for them. A detailed explanation of your censorship appears to be very necessary.

If you refuse to air FW’s advertisement, we thus request an explanation of your basis in writing or station policy within two (2) days from the date above as time is of the essence.

Thank you for your prompt attention to this request. Please respond to me at the above address.

Very Truly Yours,
Bradley A. Blakeman
President and CEO

Hat tip to Breda

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Friday, December 07, 2007

Revelations in the Joe Horn Case

Hot Carry in Louisiana

Nawlins"I live in the deep South and I want to get a concealed carry pistol. I want to know options on what finish to get. The problem is I sweat a lot and want the most durable finish for this."
"Concealed is concealed. Out of sight, the finish doesn't matter." To a certain extent, this is correct. Some finishes enhance concealment though, while others are easily noticeable underneath the dark recesses of a sports coat if you happen to leave it unbuttoned.

I live in Louisiana. One of the realities of Louisiana is it is hot and humid. Heat hangs in the air. Suffocating. Sweltering. Unbearable. Air conditioning in the summer is akin to life support. People take off their clothes. They strip down to minimal garments. Heck many people go commando simply because it's cooler! Wearing a cover garment in the summer screams "I have a gun!"

Not only do you have to consider finishes and rust problems Bourbon Street(I'll get into that in a bit) but you have to consider how you can carry the gun while still dressing comfortably and discretely in regards to carrying it.

The new-fangled "conceal it under your tucked in shirt" holsters don't work well here. Your shirt gets wet with sweat and the next thing you know the gun shows through, either printing under wet fabric or showing because a white dress shirt becomes translucent. I tried that.......It did not work for me.

I tried a simple belt clip underneath an untucked shirt. With a good gun belt for support, and a good tight clip, this works fairly well for short jaunts. It does away with the problem of a leather or nylon holster chapping sweaty skin. Believe me, a chapped love handle in the summer is something that will make you change your carry mode quickly.

The right holster will be impervious to sweat, and if it covers enough of the gun, the problem is lessened. Picking out the right gun helps a lot as well. Some materials simply fare better than others.

Over time, I have found a couple of decent carry solutions for Louisiana. Smith & Wesson Model 38 with Uncle Mike's HolsterFirst, is casual clothes.......Shorts and khakis..........For this mode of dress, I switch to pocket carry with a J-frame. For the particular gun, I would go with a lightweight S&W J-frame rated for +P .38 special or .357 magnum. The scandium frame is pretty corrosion proof, as is the cylinder. A simple Uncle Mike's pocket holster completes the package. For extended trips out and about, this works well. This carry mode does not work well with tight jeans. For tight jeans (which are uncomfortable anyway in Louisiana's heat, but some people persist) a Kel-Tec P3AT or P32 with a hardchromed slide and a holster with a plastic insert makes a good package in a front pocket. Some folks make their own plastic insert from a coffee can lid to prevent printing. Other guns are usually too fat to keep from printing in tight jeans.

If you feel the need for a larger gun, seriously consider your mode of dress. Build up a collection of light sports coats. Dress conservatively. If you buy now, you will find them on sale. Silk summer weight sports coats stay cool and conceal a gun well. Government Model in Neoprened Summer Special type holsterPlace the gun of your choice at 4:00 in anIWB or a OWB holster on a good belt and Bob's your uncle. For evening type trips, this is my preference. If you must use a IWB holster, consider gluing a piece of open cell foam neoprene backed with nylon or spandex to the inner surface, both to pad your hide, and to prevent soaking the leather with sweat. It will also help hold the holster in place for the draw. Rubber cement will attach the neoprene permanently. The other advantage of a sports coat is it gives you extra pockets. Cell phones, mini-flashlights, cigars, theater tickets can all go in the sports coat pockets. Hell toss a back up gun in one too. The sports coat keeps you from wearing a Bat Belt and a photographer's vest and looking like you area National geographic reporter afraid a bobcat might jump out of your ass at anytime. Plus, you tend to meet a classier dame and jerks tend to leave you alone when you wear a sports coat.

An apron type holster such as a SmartCarry holster works pretty well if your pants are loose enough. The SmartCarry has a sweat proof liner that other types of this holster style do not. It can become rather hot though. By going commando, you can eliminate a bit of that problem. An apron type holster is a bit slower to draw from, and it demands a shorted barreled gun, but it is a very effective concealment device. You may want to have a padded sleeve sewn up to encircle the velcro on the back to prevent chaffing.

As far as finishes go, a reality of carrying a gun must be accepted. Carry guns get beat up. You don't wear a pair of shoes and expect them to be pristine a year later. The same goes for a billfold or anything else carried daily. A carry gun is no different. Carry guns get beat up. Maintain the piece, keep it functional, and accept reality. Yes, it's an expensive depreciation if you buy new. Heck, it's expensive depreciation if you buy used. A gun reaches a point of decreasing depreciation at a certain point of it's life though. Colt Compact in a SmartCarry holsterTry to buy a good used gun already at that stage if you worry about depreciation. They are out there for sale at any gun show.

Tennifer is a great finish, but you have to accept a Glock to get it. From what I've seen, other "Tennifer-like" finishes don't fare as well as a Glock does. If a Glock is your choice of a carry gun, your problem is over.

Hard chrome is very resistant, but it lights up like neon underneath a jacket. The same goes for NP3 and stainless steel. You have to pick your poison.

A scandium framed gun takes care of part of the problem. Not only is the weapon lighter, but corrosion is minimized. On a semi-auto pistol though, the slide is still an issue.

On two of my carry 1911s I went with a Teflon type finish applied locally by a gunsmith. I alternate these with a SW1911PD which is doing well in regards to corrosion. I carry these guns either IWB or OWB underneath a sports coat, or in the SmartCarry holster. For pocket carry, I go with a stainless or lightweight alloy S&W J frame. I accept the reality that the guns will show wear and corrosion. I keep them maintained and go on with life. After all, I carry them so I may go on with life.

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More on Megan Meier

Thursday, December 06, 2007

Springfield V-16 Long Slide Review

The Springfield V-16 Long Slide. It's an awesome concept in pistols. When I first saw a photo of one, I wanted one for myself. With a six inch ported barrel and a corresponding slide, it is a unique target pistol. Unported Long SlideThe combination of weight forward of the hand, porting, and a longer sight radius supposedly combine to make a production pistol like few others. Thus, when I saw a used Long Slide on a dealer's shelf, I had to take a look.

It was an older example, stainless steel with plain checkered grips. It had a single sided extended thumb safety. As far as I was concerned, those were positive aspects. It also had a full length guide rod, and I'm guessing it was a two piece. The guide rod had a slot in the front, not a hex. There was no internal locking system on the gun. I was rather tired from shooting my own 1911s, and the dealer informed me Long Slide pistol shot low. I decided to purchase a bit of Fiocchi ammunition and take it for a ride. Unfortunately, I only had a cell phone camera.

I first endeavored to dial in the rear sight of the pistol. I quickly had the Long slide hitting just a little left of where I wanted. The trigger was a bit gritty with a hint of creep, but nothing that would not clean up nicely. Poor quality cell phone photoThe whole idea behind the V-16 Long Slide was to create a pistol with no muzzle flip, able to tweak the last bit of velocity out of a .45 ACP round or shoot .45 Super. The concept would have been great for a bowling pin gun.

I did not find the V-16 Long Slide to be any more or less controllable than my Government Model 1911s with an Ed Brown grip safety. I like the Ed Brown grip safety because it gets the web of my hand up higher behind the bore axis. The Springfield gun, with a lower cut beavertail, accomplishes the same task with a longer slide and porting.

The pistol was accurate. I fired five round strings in rapid succession into index cards. The pistol performed flawlessly, with no malfunctions. I ran 100 rounds through the behemothic pistol. I would have preferred a dovetailed fiber optic front sight. I'm not certain, but I think Springfield offered that on later Long Slide guns. The V-16 Long Slide was an interesting firearm, and I might have taken it home, except the dealer wanted $799 for this older pre-owned example. That was a bit much for me.


Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Quanell X on Hannity & Colmes Concerning Joe Horn


Beth's Got a Gun

She was beaten, kicked in the face, gagged, tied to a chair and locked in a closet. After escaping that nightmare, Beth Ferguson needed nearly two weeks to garner the courage to step out of her home. Her first trip was to church, her safe haven. She went on a Saturday night, hoping fewer people would be there as opposed to the heavily attended Sunday morning service. But it was packed. "It's odd, because when you're a victim of something like this, you almost begin to act like a victim. I got real overwhelmed and nervous. I was scared half to death, and I didn't know why," Beth said. "Have you ever seen a scary movie and been scared afterward? That's what it's like."

She endured the glances from curious church members, who couldn't help but see the bruises and cuts on her face. After that night, Beth decided she needed to return to a normal life. But she still felt violated, unsafe. She was living in fear. Her second trip out of the house: a gun shop on Cross County Road in North Charleston. "I'm going back to work one day," Beth said. "And when I do, I'll have a gun."

The Attack; The Recovery

Beth, 41, was the only customer in the Carolina Florist shop on Ashley Phosphate Road late in the afternoon on April 10. The man behind the counter advised her to look through a book so she could pick out a corsage for her son's prom. Suddenly, he held a knife to her throat. Beth Ferguson and Frank DiNardoShe fought, but he choked her until she was unconscious. She woke up to find him standing over her. When she fought again, he kicked her in the face until she agreed to cooperate.

In the locked closet, Beth sat tied to a chair, a tennis ball stuffed in her mouth. But then the man drove away, and Beth seized the moment to free herself. After she climbed through the false ceiling and dropped down into the bathroom next door, she smashed her way out through the front glass window to freedom. Lemar "Tommy" Mack, the 45-year-old husband of the florist shop owner, was arrested two days later. He was charged with kidnapping, armed robbery and assault and battery with intent to kill.

Mack had previously been convicted and served jail time for abducting a woman at a Kmart on Rivers Avenue and raping her. He also had been convicted for attacking women in 1979 and 1984. He remains at the Charleston County Detention Center because he can't make the $3 million bail. Beth has filed a $1.5 million lawsuit against Mack and his wife, Deborah Mack, and Carolina Florist.

Weeks after the attack, she walked into a gun shop for the first time. A steady stream of customers flowed in and out of Trader World Gun & Indoor Range, where dozens of shotguns, rifles and assault weapons line the walls. Shaking, Beth headed for the glass encasement filled with handguns. It runs the length of the shop. Boxes of ammunition sat on the counter. Behind it stood Frank DiNardo, a handgun in a holster on his side. Frank, a firearms instructor for nearly 30 years, was expecting Beth. Her instruction began with their first handshake; firm, thumb straight forward, not to the side. "That's how you hold a gun," Frank told her.

As the two talked, Beth saw a fellow church member from Cathedral of Praise. The woman had heard of Beth's kidnapping; she was there to buy pepper spray. Several women from the church, in fact, had come in for spray and stun guns. A group of them was considering purchasing handguns. One of them already was receiving private firearms instruction from Frank. Beth asked Frank if she needed to buy her gun before her firearms lessons began. "You're not ready," he said. He worried about her emotional state so soon after the attack.

"One minute I'm fine, and the next, I'm crying for no reason," she had told him. Counseling sessions were being arranged. Frank scheduled her gun classes to start about 10 days after their first meeting. Four hours each class. Five classes. Maybe then she would be ready, Frank said.

Frank sees a difference between the sexes when it comes to buying a gun. Men tend to walk in and buy on the spot, then schedule only the training required if they decide to apply for a concealed weapons permit. Women are more cautious. They want to learn how to properly handle and fire a gun first, then decide if they will buy, Frank said. Frank recommends taking three courses before the purchase — a basic course in the handling, firing and storing of a handgun; a personal protection course; and a course on carrying concealed handguns.

On May 6, Beth started classes, and she found a new friend in her instructor. Frank listened as she told him her story and cried. "We're going to go through this together," he said. The bruises on her face had healed. Some redness in her left eye was the only visible trace of the assault.

"My outside's healed a lot, but my inside needs healing," Beth said. She cried less often, and she and her husband had resumed their weekly date nights. Still, she sometimes had panic attacks when she was alone, or if she saw someone who looked like the man who attacked her. She found strength in the 100-plus cards and letters from friends and strangers. She resolved to arm herself with a gun. "What the Lord told me is, 'You're going to be the victor, not the victim.' "

A Gun in the Hand

The three basic rules for handling a gun were in large, capital letters on a screen in the training room May 6:




Frank takes a slow and easy approach to teaching people how to use handguns. He starts with a toy gun, then uses dummy cartridges to teach people how to load a real revolver. Beth Ferguson and Frank DiNardoIn the hot, darkened firing range, the first gun Beth shot was an air pistol. The recoil is slight when the gun is fired, and it makes little noise. She fired at inflated balloons, which made a pop that helped prepare her for the sound of a gun blast.

Next, Beth brought in a .22- caliber pistol. It is loud, and the recoil made her hand jiggle slightly as she shot off 10 rounds at the target — a paper figure of a man. Tiny puffs of smoke wafted from the gun, and the metal casings pinged against the concrete floor beneath her. Beth grinned. "It's not so bad."

June brought a different Beth to the Trader World gun shop for her second class. She prepared a short speech for a judge when her accused assailant requested that his bond be reduced. She was relieved when she learned the judge would not consider it. A counselor had helped her deal with post-trauma stress. Panic attacks came less frequently, and she felt much stronger. Frank took off the kid gloves and put a 9 mm pistol in Beth's hands.

A startling blast and a bright red flash erupted from the gun, and Beth's hand jumped upward. She winced and then stood motionless in a cloud of gray smoke. "Your whole body just jolts. It was so powerful. I felt like I couldn't control it," she said. Beth learned that choosing a firearm is like buying a good pair of shoes. It has to fit.

The 9 mm was too much. The .38-caliber revolver was easier to control — less recoil, but the trigger was more difficult to pull and it had no safety lock. She definitely wanted her gun to have a safety feature. Something between those two, a .380-caliber pistol, seemed just right. Moderate recoil, good control and a safety lock. It was small to boot — the perfect concealable weapon.

Back to Work

By mid-June, Beth felt a lot more like her old self — the one who was strong and trusting and confident. She had vowed not to return to work without a firearm, but she was needed to help run the six mattress stores she and her husband own. Pepper spray would do while she finished her firearms classes and applied for her concealed weapons permit. Her first day back overwhelmed and frightened her. Finding a full day too much at first, she eased herself back to work. "Baby steps," Beth said.

With the basic gun course behind her, Beth started an eight-hour concealed weapons course that would teach her the laws about guns. Although citizens with a permit can carry a weapon, the gun cannot be visible. Beth experimented with a variety of options, including keeping her gun in her purse, in her pocket or in a holster on her hip or ankle. She quickly ruled out keeping it in her purse, because one of the first things her attacker did was take her purse. "If there was a gun in my purse, he would have had it," Beth said.

The Big Day

On July 2, Beth was strong again, empowered even. She held a pistol with conviction as she stepped onto the range for the shooting test for her concealed weapons permit. She had to hit the target at least 35 times out of 50 shots, and she made it look easy. "She shot a 46 out of a possible 50," Frank said. "She did extremely well." Beth aced her written test as well, and the permit application was off in the mail.

In mid-October Beth's concealed weapons permit arrived. She met up with Frank and purchased the little .380-caliber pistol that she had eyed months earlier. The attack earlier in the spring was behind her. Beth has her life back, and now she's packing heat. "If I'm in a situation that's life or death, I want to live," she said. "So I'm prepared."

Nadine Parks
The Post and Courier; Charleston.net

Thank you Nadine Parks! Ms. Parks concludes her article with a primer on the basic steps towards gaining a CCW in South Carolina. she also includes a listing of those prohibited from buying a gun, such as felons, the mentally defective or incompetent, illegal aliens and those subject to a restraining order. If only other journalists would write such positive articles!

Beth Ferguson chose to protect herself with a Bersa Thunder 380. Congratulations Beth!

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