Quotes

I consider trial by jury as the only anchor yet imagined by man by which a government can be held to the principles of its constitution.
-Thomas Jefferson, 1789

coaching, empowering self-defense

I once was an active NRA-certified junior rifle coach. More relevant, I am a very good teacher. Yesterday my three charges voiced and agreed that “He is a very good coach” – which is just about the finest compliment one can lay on me. Thank you for that one.

That came up because a couple from the west coast passed through our neighborhood, and I gave them the opportunity to burn some ammunition on our short range (10-30 meters). I laid out a table of .22 semi-auto pistols, a 9mm Glock, 38 Special revolvers, .22 rifles and a […]

.45 vs 20-gauge

There are three standards in the shooting community that are simply not worth challenging within a group chatting behind the firing lines. Chief among them are the irrefutable power of the .45 ACP (“forty five”), the superiority of the 1911 (“nineteen eleven”) among handgun platforms, and the requirement that shotguns must be 12 gauge. Even if not a majority, the acolytes will be adamant, staunch and vociferous in defense of the aforementioned religions. You may not lose, but you will never win those arguments.

Fortunately we are here not there. I brook no counter-arguments, in fact I don’t want […]

a basic home armory

Inspired by the “10 Guns Worth Keeping” article that I copied and linked below is my more fundamental version of that here.

Author Bob Campbell describes his double-handful with make/model specificity that is always welcome to people considering one or another of the recommendations. However, as I read through the article I was confident that my long and short guns were functionally every bit as good as his favorites, perhaps better in my opinion. Of course opinions are like ________ , everybody has one.

I am a mid-pack shooter with at least a little experience in most shooting […]

Who has my back?

A friend who rarely goes out unarmed was relating the attitude expressed by some in a hiking group of hers. Me, carry a defensive weapon??? Why should I, Jane has my back? (not her name)

The question then becomes who has Jane’s back?

Many of us are defensively armed for more than personal preservation. It is a civic duty, and obligation we feel for our community – both large and small.

Could I watch a handful of thugs beat somebody to death? … and live with myself???

I know the answer is a lifetime of nightmares and […]

The most fun you can have

with your clothes on.

Okay, that phrase refused to stay where it belongs regardless of its limited applicability here. What I am talking about looks like a TON OF FUN, though.

I have been hankering for and looking at various ways of having a carbine I could shoot inexpensively AND quietly.

Quiet is nice for several reasons.

#1 – It is neighborly. I live in a rural area where my neighbors are mostly shooters, accustomed to sight-in, target and hunting shots taking place, BUT they are also very appreciative of the peace and quiet we have most of […]

great handgun ammo test

AmmoToGo.com published the results of an excellent, thorough and hugely informative defensive handgun ammunition test. I have never seen one better; rarely one even close.

Quite noteworthy is that a bullet design may be excellent in one caliber but perform poorly in another.

Velocity is an interesting factor, but penetration and expanded diameter are more important. Anybody with a chronograph can give you the former. It is normally listed on the box and in promotional literature. Only shooting into ballistic gel provides the latter.

The best test fires bullets through simulated winter clothes into ballistic gel. AmmoToGo.co did […]

20 gauge tactical youth-stock pump shotgun

I continue to extoll the virtues of this platform as your basic home defense firearm. You will never regret having one of these, find many people who it fits perfectly and know it could serve anybody well as an only home defense weapon if you have limited choices.

It has not been long since I published 20 gauge youth pump as #1 home defense weapon choice (Bitterroot Bugle .com, April 26th), but I did not include a link to the one I would be purchasing were I in the market today:

Mossberg 500 Tactical 8 Shot Pump Shotgun

[…]

reloading bench back in business

My reloading bench ran its first set of test loads in the new homestead. Getting it operational tends to be well below the CRITICAL and Urgent level activities. However it sure is nice to get there.

My reloading skills exceed my shooting abilities, but I work to achieve the best mechanical accuracy to minimize the inaccuracies that arrive when my finger starts dancing on the trigger.

My first two batches of load test firings were not as careful as the third one, but all suffer from eyes that cannot focus very well on both the near sights and far […]

Cause of death statistics – Hint, guns not in top 10

The statistics below and to the right are occasionally compiled. I carried one such list on a card in my wallet for a decade. The numbers ebb and flow year-to-year, but their position on the causes of death list rarely move much.

There are 32,000 gun related deaths per year by firearms. The U.S. population is 324,000,000.

Thus: 0.00987% of the population dies from gun related actions each year.

-80% are through criminal activity, gang and drug-trade related This is one cost of “our” war on non-prescription drugs.

-60% of those deaths are by suicide A similar […]

ten meter air

My best year of DCM, CMP and NRA-High-Power competition followed a winter where I had an international-style ten-meter air rifle on loan and a ten meter air gun range in my basement.

Here in our riverside paradise, I once again have a ten-meter air-gun range. In the years since my first international-level air gun experience, I also acquired one each adequately accurate rifle and pistol to shoot on it.

Sadly, I have not used them much at all recently.

A couple of days ago, I celebrated a long overdue clear sally port floor and clean workbench by shooting both […]

suppressors

I endured the expensive and long process currently required to gain permission from our rulers to own a sound suppressor for my rifle.

Over 9 months and $1,000 for a hundred dollar part that enables your neighbors to go about their business without noise pollution should you choose to sight in or practice with a firearm. Darn near a year for some faceless apparatchik to affix a rubber stamp and signature to my papers.

Precious few of us bother. Therefore one person’s shooting is an entire neighborhood’s disturbing the peace.

I repurposed a .223 AR-15 rifle into […]

analog calculators

In this age of converting everything to digital, bits, bytes and button pushing, my recent trip to a beginners’ long-range shooting school (see my first 1K) brought the power of slide rules back into my world. I am also [re-]discovering the beautiful metric system of measurements.

The normal, average, mundane, commonplace answer to everything today is “I have a computer that does that”. Substitute “smart phone”, calculator or other electronic alternative to knowing how to actually do stuff and you have the answer to 99.9% of the computational questions asked today.

I am not going to conjure up ways […]