2nd Amendment to the Constitution of The United States of America

A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.

"I ask sir, what is the militia? It is the whole people except for a few politicians."
- George Mason (father of the Bill of Rights and The Virginia Declaration of Rights)

Monday, June 28, 2010

Some M1 problems at the range....seeking advice..

I have already posted about my M1 Garand and how much I have enjoyed it so far..

Took it to the range yesterday with my friend Pat and had an issue with the Garand. It would fail to either feed or eject rounds and basically turned into a single shot rifle. It worked fine after the first time I took it apart to clean and hit the range and am trying to figure out what is up now.

Several on line resources point towards either bad parts or lubrication. I might also think that it is related to the gas system also...

If anyone has any idea where to start troubleshooting this issue please comment below.

thanks!!

Pat trying his hand at the M1...unfortunately what you are looking at here is a pretty sophisticated bolt action rifle at this point...

..and btw, we got some pretty good time in with pistols so the day was not a total disappointment!!

Old McDonald had a gun...EI-EI-O

..and now he can own it legally in Chicago!!!

SCOTUS just over turned Chicago's gun ban.....

Decision is here...

Its been funny to see the media circus surrounding this issue and the stories of citizens that have defended themselves in their own homes with "illegal" firearms...

Otis McDonald sued the city of Chicago after being repeatedly burglarized and threatened in his South Chicago neighborhood. The 76 year old grandparent got tired of the reactive nature of the Chicago police in protecting him and his family and decided to stand up for himself and assert his 2nd Amendment right to bear arms for protection. He is not your typical gun owner, a life long Democrat, he is a classic example of how the proper view on this subject can be found on both sides of the political spectrum. Just like surgery is never minor when its happening to you, gun ownership is not purely an academic issue when its your life that needs defending.

way to go Otis!! the common man is heard!!

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Home security systems…

Just got home from work and found this on my front door…

scan0001

 

Sorry guys, I already have a S&W security system….

and one by Glock…

and one by Kimber….

and one by Mossberg…

and one by Ruger….

and one by…..

Seriously, pretty interesting that S&W is branching out.  Their name recognition should help in some markets while probably not be too hot in some others.  Hopefully, their marketing guys know how to use GIS systems so they can concentrate on where they can make some sales.

Nurse from Iconic WWII Photo passes away..

Many people will recognize the photo below:

(click on the picture to be taken to the Time-Life news feed of the article)

The nurse in that photo, Edith Shain, passed away at 91. While her name is largely unknown to the public (and the name of the sailor in the picture has never been determined) her image has been a iconic snapshot of the end of WWII and the euphoria that must have been rampant at that time.

Another reminder that the people of "The Greatest Generation" are leaving us in a steady stream more and more often. If you get chance say thanks to a WWII vet (for that matter a Korea, Vietnam or other vet as well) before its too late.

This spring my family got the chance to welcome home an "honor flight" of WWII vets that visited the WWII memorial in Washington D.C. These "honor flights" provide a way for these veterans to visit their memorial. Because it took so long to build a national monument many of the veterans are now retired and living on fixed incomes that prevent them from traveling due to the cost of airfare and such.

My wife and kid and I at Port Columbus Airport to welcome home vets from WWII. The sign my daughter is holding shows a picture of a "ruptured duck" badge that returning servicemen wore to show others that they were just recently returned. Many did not have any clothing other than their uniform and this would allow them to wear it in lieu of civilian clothes up to 30 days after their discharge.

To find out more about the honor flights click on their logo below.



Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Visit The Survivalist Blog....huey needs some free ammo!!

The Survivalist Blog is giving away 1,000 rounds of 9mm to somebody who posts a link back to that site as I am doing here. Consider this my entry...(required text below)

M.D. Creekmore at The Survivalist Blog – a survival blog dedicated to helping others prepare for and survive disaster – with articles on bug out bag contents, survival knife choices and a wealth of other survival information is giving away a 1,000 round case of 9mm – 124 Grain FMJ (a $200 value – donated by LuckyGunner)! To enter, you just have to post about it on your blog. This is my entry. Visit The Survivalist Blog for the details.

OK now that's over let me give you my run down on survivalism. I will freely admit that I personally have not done enough preperation in case I need to be self sufficient with my family in tow. Part of that is, like most people, I go on day-to-day without the perceived threat looming to do so. This is an error on my part. When the threat or the need does arise is the worst time to start worry about getting prepared. We don't buy car insurance thinking we are going to crash the next day, survivalism is the same way. In reality, survival preparation IS insurance, insurance that if basic social services we depend on break down that you and yours will be ready to carry on until a better day.

Previously in my post on Go Bags, I have briefly outlined by concept of what I feel is my most likely survival situation that I might face here in Central Ohio. Not all survival plans are based on living out of a cabin in the mountains somewhere growing your own food and raising sheep to survive until the world is restored to order. This site tends to lean towards this "living off the grid" type existence a bit, and that is fine. For some, this is the threat they perceive and different strokes for different folks and all that. My vision of what I need is a bit more limited but that is no reason not to take what is on this site to heart. While my own vision of an emergency bug out does not require me to build my own shelter in the woods, but some basic knowledge of such info is good to have if say, you become lost in the woods while out for an afternoon hike on vacation. It never hurts to have more knowledge than you need, and Mr. Creekmore's blog is packed with it. The way it is presented is in a classic blog read, straight down the page in chronological order. There is a small archive control on the left hand side of the page to allow you to go to different months of posting material. I think that Possibly a similar directory structure, such as the one on this blog may help some readers, but I found it easy enough just to read down the pages for info I was interested in.

In short, the material is excellent. Mr. Creekmore has definitely done his homework and, according to his bio, walks the walk himself, having taken himself off the grid and into a trailer on 2 acres of land a few years back. He has several articles on planning and preparation and there is a good deal of emphasis on getting the most bang for your buck as well.

Head on over, take a look, read some articles and hey, I might even win some ammo...

Monday, June 21, 2010

Carry and caliber….the intersection of convenience and effectiveness…

noisy-cricketI run into the same arguments over and over on forums across the internet concerning the effectiveness of this caliber versus that caliber in one situation or another.  The truth is that there are no easy answers for these arguments.  For example, read this thread from the We The Armed forum on the ineffectiveness of the M4’s 5.56 round in Afghanistan and the resulting comments, mine included, and the varying schools of thought expounded on:

U.S.’s 5.56mm rifles not suited to warfare in Afghan hills.

There are some varied opinions logically argued by their respective authors that can be agreed upon that are followed by equally as logically convincing opposing views.  There is one poster who claims to have seen a Talibastard take a 5.56 round laterally through both distal chest walls going through both lungs who could take cover and fire back. This (unconfirmed) event would seem to fly in the face of conventional reason which states a wound such as the one described should have almost instantaneously incapacitated the target.  Who is correct and who is wrong?  The truth is nobody has it totally correct. 

In another graphic example, here is a FBI analysis of a gunfight in which the assailant was shot multiple times by Speer 180 gr. Gold Dot .40 S&W rounds and 55 gr. 5.56 fired by AR carbines and was still able to resist arrest prior to his demise. As the pictures in the slideshow clearly show this assailant was hit several times, yet was still able to maneuver and continue to fire are police officers. WARNING VERY GRAPHIC CONTENT!!!! NSFW!!!

Sorry after further thought, I decided to delete the slideshow even though the graphic nature of the images would show how much damage a round can do and still not stop an attacker, the graphic image of it was not something I was willing to have this blog possibly linked too on the internet and associated with just to satisfy the cravings of some gore seeking individuals.  I also did not like the fact that I felt compelled to list this blog as having adult content due to its nature.  Sorry….

There is an old gunfighter’s adage that states to “bring the largest caliber you can carry to a gunfight”.  This makes logical sense, but caliber and the so called “stopping power” factor imposed when comparing one to another is only part of the picture.  Despite this there are definite advantages to having a .45 ACP over its smaller cousin the .380 ACP as your daily carry round.  

There is another adage that states “a .22 in your pocket is better than a .45 in your safe”.  This is also correct.  The first cardinal rule of a gunfight is simple, have a gun.  The vast majority of the time that I am legally able to carry a personal firearm for protection I do just that.  Its not a “ego” or “power trip” thing, its just that I firmly believe that the one moment you will actually need to defend yourself will not be announced with a certified letter or a appointment reminder via email telling you when and where it will be.  To always carry is to always be prepared, and the familiarity of having the weapon on you on a daily basis will bring a familiarity and allow you to conduct your normal day to day activities with minimal thought to having it on you.  A smaller form factor firearm in a smaller cartridge size will certainly aid in this goal.

Somewhere in this matrix of size and portability versus caliber lies the “perfect” handgun and round combo for CCW use, although the truth to this holy grail of personal protection may never be revealed to us. The basic reason behind the mystery is simple, chaos theory.  In most practical terms if I shoot 2 identical blocks of ballistic gelatin with the same round from the same weapon at the same distance I will get observable results reliable enough to base a generally correct conclusion on the effectiveness of that particular round in those parameters.  This system is deterministic, that is the end effect is determined by the exact nature of the initial conditions of the event.  However, by the use of an over-hyped concept called “the butterfly effect” we can explain why no 2 events with the same initial conditions are exactly the same and therefore predictable.  I will attempt to simplify this concept in layman’s terms rather than expound on the mathematical reasoning of it (which I can’t really do anyway this far out of college level math and statistics); there are too many variables, no matter how minute, that effect the precise outcome of any event to say that they are predictable.

The most common method to explain this concept is the ball and water example.  Take a perfectly round ball, say a polished pool queue ball and a dropper of water.  Drop consecutive drops of water on it from the same height and position and observe the results.  Assuming the water makes it to the ball (if the water just hangs there in mid air after leaving the dropper we have a whole new set of issues to deal with) you will most likely notice that the water will roll off the polished surface of the ball to the floor in a vast array of differing ways.  It would be logical to assume that given the exact same starting position of each drop that the water would roll off in the same direction each time.  This would be correct except for that myriad of micro variables that come into play.  Height of the drop and starting position are easy enough to observe; but what about the other factors that come into play?  The exact weight and shape of each drop, microscopic differences in the surface texture of the ball, slight and unperceivable gusts of wind or air around the experiment or even the rotation of the earth itself all play in the outcome.  These micro variables are not easily determined or predictable at the outset yet all play a role in the outcome, no matter how small indeed. 

So why we can be fairly certain that a 125 gr. JHP .38 special +P round fired at Johnny Scumbag assailant from 7 feet away from a S&W J-frame revolver should penetrate through a jacket and normal street clothes to a depth of 11” and expand to a nominal  circumference of .59 inches based upon test data given to us by a particular manufacturer (and before anyone starts sharp shooting me on the ballistics data those are just rough numbers I threw together from several different rounds I Googled), the end result that it will actually do this is always in question.

Many times you will read about somebody that was shot at close range but survived because “the bullet missed the aorta by a fraction of an inch” or similar.  Many times these people are shot by somebody using a “capable” round such as a 9mm or .45 ACP yet seemingly miraculously survive their wounds.  Well, why did that bullet miss by a fraction of an inch?  Micro variable seem a good enough reason to me.  Maybe the victim had decided to wear a heavier jacket that day because they were feeling a bit ill and the heavier material altered the trajectory of the round enough to miss that aorta by a “fraction” of an inch.  There are numerous examples of soldiers being saved in battle by a Bible in their pocket that saved them from an enemy’s bullet, it was even fashionable at one time to carry a “bullet proof” Bible with a metal cover on it into battle in the First World War and even earlier…Bullet-Bible-Hole

 

Conversely, I once had a talk with a retired Columbus (OH) Police Officer (the father-in-law of a friend) who told me a couple of stories about shootings.  One he shot a suspect who was pointing a gun at him from a few feet away with an issue S&W .38 revolver, far from being dropped on the spot the suspect took a step back, looked at his chest, looked at my friend’s father-in-law, sat down and basically gave up the ghost and laid down to die.  All the while he would probably would have had the ability to shoot back if he had desired (I don’t know any other details that what I was told so please don’t ask).  He contrasted this tale with one of an officer that died in the line of duty from taking a .22 pistol round to the chest from some distance away and the round managed to find its way around clothing, a vest, ribs, muscle, cartilage and all else to end up in his heart and drop him on the spot.

So basically, chaos theory and the butterfly affect throw many common assumptions about caliber selection to the wind.  You can NEVER be certain that the round you choose will have the desired affects on your assailant 100% of the time.

So What to carry??

Going back to the adage to “bring the largest caliber you can carry to a gunfight” we need to look at the work “can”.  Bring the largest caliber you CAN carry to a gunfight.  With the emphasis on the word “can” this statement now makes a lot more sense.  Personally, if I knew for a fact that I was going to be in a gun battle, I would show up for it looking something like the following guy…

ol painless

but, hey that’s just me, I tend to over react sometimes….

Normally, though, you will find me in possession of one of the two following weapons as my CCW choice on any given day…

1. GLOCK G23 .40 S&W

2. Ruger LCP .380 ACP

Now while neither of these are the largest caliber available, they are about the largest I can carry for their intended purpose.  The Glock is my general purpose pistol these days (see my previous post on it here) and I have found it to be a wonderful compromise between a large duty sized pistol and a compact CCW piece.  It can fulfill both roles if the weather is cool enough to allow me to wear sufficient clothing to cover it.  Not that it is overly bulky, but wearing a pair of shorts and a t-shirt may leave it exposed in certain circumstances.  In these times I choose to utilize the Ruger LCP in .380, not the most powerful round by a large margin, but its compactness allows me to carry it concealed almost anywhere it is legal to do so discretely with total comfort.  That in itself assures that I will be in compliance with the first rule of gun fighting, bring a gun..this solves the alternative of this scenario, either carry a bigger gun and get “made” and lose the element of surprise if needed, or <gasp!> not to carry at all**

here is a picture I took of it in my front pocket a few minutes ago in a Uncle Mikes #2 pocket holster I bought for it…Yes it will print more if I sit or otherwise pull material against it, but it looks square and could be a iPhone, BlackBerry or any other device carried today in pockets all across the globe.

 

Conclusion

So where does this put us in context to the original reason for this post?  As far as the 5.56 versus “larger” argument of the post on We The Armed, I am in favor of our forces carrying a larger round if all possible (and it should be considering the ranges of engagement that they are finding and the mechanized nature of the war at this point) with the understanding that a “magic bullet” will not fix the problem overnight unless it is mated with other factors to limit the “micro variables” that will also come into play, mainly training in its capabilities and employment.  It is one thing to give a new toy to the troops and let them find out about it on their own, another all together to give them correct and proper instruction on its use.  You only need to look at the disastrous beginning the M16 had in Vietnam (not only was the powder changed, but some troops were even instructed NOT to clean the rifle!) to see this lesson once, we do not need a repeat today. 

So while choas theory will show us that a round is never 100% predictable on what it will do, we sure can carry a bigger bang to give us every edge when we can to even the odds…

**note, as not to be hypocritical, I will freely admit that I do not CCW all the time.  While I will normally always have a weapon in my vehicle (locked and secured) I will sometimes choose not to carry based upon my own individual threat assessment of the AO I will be in.  This is a choice each of must make based upon our own evaluations, ethics, personal values and legal constraints in our respective localities.  Please carry responsibly.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Insider update, Ohio S.B. 239 stalled...

I thought I might just "scoop" other sources but the Buckeye Firearms Association beat me to it this morning...take a minute and go read this and come on back..

Restaurant/ Car Carry legislation likely stalled until after November elections.

This bill, if passed, would of allowed restaurant carry in establishments that serve alcohol (as long as they do not forbid CCW and the individual carrying does not consume alcohol themselves) and clarify the procedure for carrying in your vehicle.

Despite opponents predictions, a similar law passed in Arizona has not produced any wild shootouts or other noteworthy events.

It was ironic to read this because just this morning at work I was talking to a new employee in my agency's directors office who just recently (a few days ago) was working in the Ohio House of Representatives for the Speaker of the House and part of his duties was helping here prioritize which bills were to be brought up before the break. Just as BFA stated, the delay in putting this bill to the floor for a vote was partially motivated by political means. The Speaker of the House is himself a gun owner and reportedly a 2A supporter - per my "source" - but would not put the bill in front of the house this close to November elections and have to answer to (Democratic and liberal) voters of why he supported a bill backed by the NRA.

The other reason that should be noted and not ignored that was in the list of bills that needed to be brought to a vote were other bills of a higher priority for the citizens of Ohio such as "Sexting" legislation that would increase the penalties for sending pornography to minors via a phone picture message and bills relating to Ohio's new casinos, which need to be passed before they can be operational.

So while I am disappointed that it will not be passed soon, I feel confident that our voices will be heard and this will be passed sometime in the next session.