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)

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

One cool mother....

My "bad MotherF#$%er" wallet is on order....a la Jules from Pulp Fiction...

Pic taken right after I got home from deployment, hence the haircut and apparent lack of the second chin...

BTW, that's a Glock 23 with M3 light and yes, to my NJ readers, those are evil .40 hollow points...

Monday, August 30, 2010

Going to Appleseed again...

Going to my second Appleseed, September 25 - 26, 2o1o in Gibsonberg, Ohio (same place as last time, good folks, great range)...if anyone would like to join me here is a link to the page to order tickets....

For anyone that missed it the first time, click here to find out about my last Appleseed experience...

and, oh yes...THE M1 IS GOING TO ROAR!!

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Dammit..I wanted a M-1 Carbine...

Got this in an email from CMP sales this week...

M1 CARBINES SOLD OUT. The CMP is now sold out of
M1 carbines except for the few we will still be selling on our auction program. At this time, we have no reason to expect to receive more.

M1 CARBINE STRIPPED BARRELED RECEIVERS. We are now offering for sale M1 stripped carbine barreled receivers. The several hundred we have available are the residue of our carbine inspection and repair operations of the past several years. Item number R017BRZ, Price is $125 each plus $12.95 S&H each. For more information, please see the carbine page at http://www.thecmp.org/m1carbine.htm. Choice of manufacturer is luck of the draw.

DAMN! I waited too long to get one! If I had of had the cash when I got the Garand I would of picked one up...now its down to looking at gun shows and private sales to pick one up at an inflated price - and no, I do not want to buy one of those Auto Ordanance post WWII ones!! Underwood, Inland or Winchester only!!

I guess now I will be obsessed more than ever to get one now that it is "unobtainable"..

Damn again!!

It shall be mine...oh yes...it SHALL be mine...

Thursday, August 26, 2010

A VIDEO review of my Kimber Custom II, some bags and other swag...

Well, trying my hand a video again...its time consuming but I think this might be something worth going back to in the future.

This was a quick one take video, I could add some more info if I actually practiced and rehearsed before I shot the final product. Windows Live Movie Maker makes editing the video easy, keep that in mind...

Your comments here and on YouTube welcome!


Monday, August 23, 2010

Look what came in the mail today….a laser!

A few days ago I posted about my decision to keep my LCP and add a Crimson Trace laser over buying a new S&W Bodyguard .380.  Well, today the UPS guy dropped a package off on my doorstep with a Crimson Trace LG-431 laser grip for my LCP in it.  I  bought it from an outfit in Iowa called Trophy’s Tactical that I found on the web with the lowest shipped price available.  At first I was a bit concerned as they had no feedback about their service, but they have a larger parent unit called Trophy Outdoor that had some positive reviews so I threw some cash at them for the unit.  I got an immediate email for the purchase but nothing following up for the shipping info.  I emailed today to get a tracking number and had a response in a few hours.  Low and behold the package was scheduled for delivery today.  Awesome!

Anyway here are a few pics… (I apologize for how washed out the quality is on them).

 

The box from Crimson Trace, just a nice cardboard box, yeah!

DSCF1339

 

Inside you have an owners manual, installation manual, warranty card, decal, the laser unit itself, a battery, mounting screws, 2 Allen wrenches and some cleaning swabs for the lens. DSCF1340

 

Installation is a snap following the simple instructions.DSCF1341

 

The unit fully installed, total install time…about 2 minutes and that was taking my time..DSCF1342

 

Although I can no longer use my Fobus or Don Humme holsters, this Uncle Mikes pocket holster (that I normally use anyway) still fits the pistol even with the CT unit installed.  It is a bit snug but it still draws fine and the extra space taken up by the CT unit actually keeps it the holster better, win!DSCF1343 

OK, so now I need to “lollypop” the unit by adjusting the laser beam using the included Allen wrench to where the dot sits on top of the pistol sights at a given range to roughly put the impact at the point of aim at that distance.  A future trip to the range will have to be used to verify this adjustment.  I will also fire a box after I have it zeroed and see how well it keeps its POA with recoil.  If needed I will adjust it back and add a drop of locktite (weakest) to the adjustment screws and see if that keeps zero.  I do not anticipate any issues though, from what I have read online. 

More info to come….

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Shot some steel plates today....

Haven't headed South to Circleville to shoot steel plates in a bit so Kev and I made the trip and did just that. I did just OK, struggled with the course which had smaller targets that were farther away than I remember them. A lot of 2 and 3 round strings to get one 6" plate at 10 yards and such. Still I had fun and learned a few things. Some people shoot their runs and sit down and let the rest of us police brass, paint targets and score the match. Not me, I like to think I learn something about the sport by being as close to the firing line as I can and observing the "old timers" that have been doing this stuff for years. Even got to fire a S&W 4506 (which I had an opportunity to buy for a steal a while back but declined - bad choice) from one of them, shot like a dream with .45 ACP.

One thing I learned personally is that I need to work on the draw and presentation of my firearm, transitioning targets and to get rid of the stock Glock sights for something better, maybe a Heine 8-ball arrangement. The "Cup and Ball" thing is just not working for me in speed aquistion type shooting.

I did turn out to be a splatter magnet though as a result of being up there constantly. I got hit by at least 5 pieces of splatter (more correctly it is called "spall") from rounds impacting the steel and either sending bits of the round or the target back at the line. Hell, the last time I was in the "safe area" clearing the range and a piece from across the road ricocheted all the way over there and landed in front of me.

All in all, a good time and I got some more trigger time in which is always good. A bad day shooting is usually better than a good day of work..
.

Just hanging out...they guy behind me has a Kimber .22 conversion kit for his Kimber, might need to try one of those out...

Friday, August 20, 2010

The M41-A Pulse Rifle from Aliens.....for real!


I talked a bit about this fictional weapon from the movie Aliens recently, well what do you know? Somebody built a working model!!



S&W Bodyguard .380 vs. my LCP...MEH!

Smith &Wesson unveiled a new .380 pocket pistol this year at the SHOT show designed and squarely aimed to compete with the Ruger LCP. The LCP is clearly the current sales leader in the .380 class with over 80,000 sold last year alone. S&W has a long and storied past in providing defensive firearms for law enforcement, military and civilian shooters for over a hundred years and obviously could not stand the thought of missing out on this segment of the industry, which has been eating at the sales of its J-frame revolvers as of lately.

They also rolled out a polymer revolver called the Bodyguard .38 to directly compete against the Ruger LCR which had also been eating away at its revolver sales, but that's a post for another time...

They came up with a pretty darn good looking compact pistol and backed it up with some flashy advertising...


As you can see the emphasis on the pistol is the integrated Insight laser that is standard on the Bodyguard .380. A laser unit from Crimson Trade for the LCP (and the pistol it directly copied in design, the Kel-Tec P-3AT) for a while now and has been a very good selling item for them.


As you may remember from one of my earlier posts, Ruger itself used some high profile marketing hype when rolling out the LCP..


There has already been some considerable hype in the usual gun rags about the "new kid on the block" from S&W. Other notable points on the Bodyguard are dovetailed sights and a manual safety, both standard on the pistol and not available on the LCP. Also, the Bodyguard .380 has a slide that locks back on the last round of the magazine, a feature the LCP lacks that I find quite appealing.



Would the LCP's throne is threatened by this dark night armed with a laser and such?....got me thinking. Should I "upgrade" my current LCP? The cost for a Bodyguard .380 in Columbus, Ohio is currently right around $500. I paid $300 for my LCP and the Crimson Trace unit for it is right around $200 if bought locally so price wise it would be a wash. Would it be worth it? I started to take a look and see what I could find...

First off lets take a look at what I consider to be two of the best user videos (yes, this is a video heavy post...I find them, you watch them) of the Bodyguard .380 by my 'net friend George Hill, aka The Mad Ogre from www.madogre.com...

..an overview...


..and a shooting review..


Well, that should pretty much make my decision clear...run out and grab a Bodyguard .380 right? Well, now quite. Before I get into that lets take a look at some of the specs for these two pocket pistols...

S&W Bodyguard .380 Ruger LCP
Caliber .380 ACP .380 ACP
Capacity 6+1 6+1
Length 5.25" 5.16"
Height 4.10" 3.60"
Width 0.75" 0.82"
Weight 11.85 oz. 9.40 oz.
Barrel 2.75" 2.75"
Safety manual none
Sights drift adj. rear, dove tailed fixed, integral
Laser Insight Technologies built into frame Crimson Trace available option ($200)
MSRP: $575 $364
Actual as of 08/10 $499 $299

Some thoughts of the two of them based on my meat pawing of a Bodyguard at a gun store (hey, I make purchase decisions the same way most of you do by searching out info and whatever hands on I can. Unlike some other blogs and sites I don't get manufacturers sending me samples to try out).

  • I like the way that the laser is triggered on the CT unit compared to the Bodyguard, less thought involved.
  • Size wise they are pretty much DNO (dead nuts on) in dimension to where it doesn't matter. The bodyguard does have a 2.5 ounce difference in weight which while not much is certainly more when hanging out in a holster in the loose pocket of my khaki's swinging around.
  • Tossed up on the sights, yeah the dovetailed units are a big improvement over the LCP but for what I think the pistol was designed for it may be overkill, doubt I will be taking this thing to the range with a couple of boxes of ammo just to plink.
  • Definitely like the slide locking back on the last round over the LCP arrangement.
  • Guy at the store had some snap caps so we compared triggers, the LCP is lighter but a bit "squishy" compared to the Bodyguard. The Bodyguard seems to need a bit more to get it to break but it does so cleaner than the LCP (both were new units from the display case)
  • * Didn't like the manual safety on the one I looked at, felt stiff and I though the button would be a PITA to deactivate from a pocket draw when you were also worried about getting the laser engaged at the same time.
  • Found a CT unit for the LCP for $153 shipped on line...
  • While the LCP certainly doesn't look bad (matter of fact the only reason I upgraded to it from the P3AT was for aesthetics) the Bodyguard does have a certain "cool" factor to it the LCP doesn't
  • The bodyguard has a very solid and quality feel to it and the melonite finish on the stainless slide is of very good quality. Good gripping surfaces on the grip also.
  • Rob at the gun store said that they have had several Bodyguards come back for defective laser units in the first couple of weeks of having them available.
So what it basically came down to for me was this, does the Bodyguard .380 offer substantial enough improvements over the LCP to warrant me to spend money on it? No, it doesn't.

While the Bodyguard is certainly a quality product I feel that the LCP suits my needs in every way except one, the laser. After thinking it over and looking at some training videos over on Crimson Trace's web site I decided to get one of their units for the LCP. Sure the sights on the Bodyguard are nice, but check out the groups I put together at 3 yards with the LCP (realistic range for this type of gun)
I was shooting at the top triangle on the target. First 3 rounds are the lower group that I used a 6 O'clock hold on the triangle and then went to a center hold for the last 3. Not bad for a pistol "lacking proper sights" as some have claimed.

The slide lock back would have been nice but this type of pistol is designed and carried as a last ditch type weapon where you are only going to be firing a few shots anyway. If I need to swap mags I will be at a disadvantage for sure, but that is a negligible risk in my book.

Manual safety? A non-issue for me, I have yet to have a ND in my pocket while carrying the LCP due to the trigger being pulled. Just get a holster that covers the trigger guard and you're good to go.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Went to the range.....yeah!

Realized it had been a while since I fired something up, so grabbed Kev and headed to the range at Blackwing Shooting Center in Delaware, Ohio last night.

Shot my Kimber Custom II 1911, Glock 34, my new Glock 19 and my Ruger LCP while I was there. As an added bonus my neighbor "Larry the Fireman" just happened to be there with his teenage son showing him how to properly shoot a handgun (and responsibly) so it was a variable "shootapalooza" as much as it could be for an ad hoc pistol shoot. God help the fool that thinks a break in or home invasion on my street is a good idea.

Quick video of me putting some rounds into a target with the Kimber, G19 and the LCP...



Couple of points of interest...

  • The Kimber is great 1911 and deserves the "street cred" it has, the pistol is much more accurate that I am. Larry was able to shoot a nice tight group with it at 30 feet to back this claim up. I have the "budget" Custom II model that does not come with checkering or advanced sights and retails for about $700, its still an incredible piece of engineering.
  • Despite S&W introducing their highly touted Bodyguard .380 at this years SHOT show, the LCP is still a hell of a pocket pistol to own. I was shooting at approx 3 yards which I feel is in the range that this pistol was designed to operate from. The first set of shots I was using a 6 O'clock hold, saw the pattern and adjusted to a center hold on the target for the next 3 rounds. Pretty good accuracy considering the sights are tiny and almost non existent.
  • Those were some of my first rounds using the new G19. I wasn't going for either single aimed shots or rapid fire but somewhere in between. I just put an XS Big Dot sight on it and was just trying it out and also putting rounds down the barrel to "break in" the pistol. Feels great when I shoot it. Compared to the G23 that it replaced, the 9mm G19 shoots softer in my hand and the sights seemed to come back onto the target quicker. I also ran a mag of hollow points through it without a hitch.

I will post a bit more on all three of these pistols in the next few days.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Adams Holsters by Luke Adams

ostriphant

 

Craftsman: (def.) (Merriam-Webster Online)

1 : a worker who practices a trade or handicraft
2 : one who creates or performs with skill or dexterity especially in the manual arts

 

Let’s face it, we don’t carry our pistols out in public like in a Hollywood action movie walking or running down the street sweeping every civilian passerby with the muzzle as we chase after nuclear terrorists.  Unless you have unhealthy and dangerous habits you’re like the other 99.9% of us and carry your weapon in some type of holster arrangement in order for it to be ready in case you need it (the entire purpose of carrying a CCW in the first place, right?).  Luckily for the masses you have a vast array of choices when it comes to picking a holster for your carry needs when it comes to things such as style, material, finish, construction and hardware.  I am not going to lie to you and tell you that the holster I have from Adams Holsters is the one absolute accessory you need to go and buy right now for your pistol, I could tell you that but I won’t.  The truth is that for the majority of us almost any holster out there will fulfill the basic purpose of a holster as stated above..

..however….

If you want a holster of exceptional quality made by hand by someone who truly cares about his product and making sure that you’re totally satisfied with your purchase…

Then I can definitely under those conditions recommend that you take a look at one of the custom, hand made products that Luke makes and markets out of his small, mobile operation for people who know that carrying a weapon comfortably and with some style is only slightly less important than having one with you in the first place!!

Luke has only been making his hand made creations for a few years now, and in that short time has developed a solid product made with quality material that he sells at competitive prices via his online store.  He used to hand stitch all of his holsters (the reason hand stitching is preferred is explained on his website here) but increased demand and orders has forced him to go to machine stitching to save time and now hand stitching is a (well worth it) premium option on his products.  Not that machine stitching is bad mind you, especially when you consider that you just don’t walk into a JoAnn Fabrics location and pick up a machine to stitch leather.  The machines used for this purpose are special built and the story behind how Luke came about his and the reverse engineering he had to do to get it running is available over at the forums at We The Armed, where Adams Holsters is one of their primary sponsors.  Adams Holsters even has its own forum area for you to talk to Luke and others about his holsters.

pete-s-glock19

MINE!!

As I stated above, all of Luke’s holsters are hand made with the majority made to order.  The process is time consuming to get the level of quality that he strives for so when ordering allow for a good bit of time to receive it (Luke will generally give you a fairly accurate turn around time when you place your order and update you if that changes at any time). The the wait is worth it.  Luke told me on the phone one day that he strives to make a product that he as a customer would not only have trust in but also be proud to be seen wearing.  I should also mention that he and his wife live on the road in an RV traveling across the country both enjoying life and selling his wares so be sure to find out where he is located (generally Texas or Michigan with a few stops here and there) when your order gets close to completion and maybe you can even pick it up in person and meet the man himself.  Communication is another thing you get with his products.  If you have a question or need to make a change in your order, email or call Luke and he will get back to you quickly via email or a phone call.  That is a level of service that some of the bigger manufacturers just won’t offer you.

Luke also offers a discount to active military and Law Enforcement officials so be sure to take advantage of the savings if you are either.

DSCF1314

The Texas IWB holster, get it with the shape and all?…anyway, a fine product made in America by an American for other gun toting Americans, WIN!  My new G19 is securely tucked in it here.  

OK, lets talk about my holster.  The model I have is called the “Texas” holster (due to its shape roughly approximating the Lone Star State’s shape) with kydex clips.  Its his basic bread & butter IWB holster and he sells a lot of them.  There are a few basic colors to choose from but since this one would be holding a Glock inside of my pants I opted for basic black with plain leather.  There are various special leathers that you can order your holster either entirely made from or used to add optional trim pieces to it.  One of the more curious pieces is the “Ostraphant” holster (that’s it up at the top of this post, it his crossroads OWB model) he made for another Buckeye shooter who lives about a hour North of my location.  I still have got to get up there to see this thing.  An obvious mixture of ostrich and elephant, the pictures of it are quite striking.   My own holster features the full hand stitching process (I was one of the last to get it free before it became an option…win!) which not only offers the advantages that hand stitching provides but also adds some character to it.  It features basic kydex clips which can be upgraded to adjustable ones or leather keepers and a sweat shield to protect the metal part of the pistol from my sweaty flanks in the summer heat. While wearing a full rig like this one took a bit to get used to, other than the texture on the grip of my now sold G23 RTF2 rubbing me raw, the holster carries very well.  The dual clips help distribute the weight of the pistol well and the leather conforms to your body helping the pistol not only blend into your shape but also sit comfortably on your hip.  It does need some adjusting to get used to an all day holster when I am used to my Versaclip kydex rig I have previously used.  While the kydex sleeve is easy to slip on and off it does not give to your body and needs adjusting as you shift in your car seat or while sitting down in order to not dig into your side.  There is much less of that with the Texas holster.  While I don’t forget I have 30+ ounces of loaded weapon on me, it does help it carry quite a bit better and more comfortably throughout the day.DSCF1315

A full sweat shield protects the weapon from the salts in sweat that can damage finishes over time.

 DSCF1316 Close up detail of the hand stitching Luke does as an upgrade on his holsters.  Notice how tight the stitching is he does by hand, when I say “craftsman” I mean it.  I would totally screw this up if I had to try and duplicate it.  Hand stitching will add a few bucks and some time to your order, but is well worth it.

So a quick recap, you need a holster.  Sure, you can go order a leather holster from Galco, DeSantis or any of those other larger companies and pay a bit more to pick it up in a store or in a week or so in the mail and it will work fine.  On the other hand you could save a bit of cash and order a Adams Holster model of your choice and get a quality product made to your specifications by a skilled craftsman (see I worked that opening line in the post..somehow) who cares not only about your satisfaction but also about his product that you will wear with his mark on it.  Again, in my opinion its worth the time to do business with Luke Adams and get a product that is made here in the US (not in some sweatshop somewhere) by hand by an American who supports gun rights and is somebody you can trust.

As always I am in no way, shape or form associated with Adam’s Holsters professionally and my opinions here are not for any financial gain from his company.  But when you find some cool guy out to make a living doing what he likes to do, doing it well and being an all around stand up guy…well you just got to pass it on.

Click on the Adams Holster logo below to be taken to his sight to view his current offerings and for the latest pricing and availability info and be sure to visit We The Armed and check out the posts in his section to see what others already know about his work.

ahlogo

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Holy Crap I've gone through a lot of guns!!

Just thinking about the G19 that I just picked up and how many times I have filled out a BATF form to purchase one over the past few years since I started this hobby/obsession with firearms. It dawned on me that I have gone through A LOT of weapons in that time. Some I got rid of because they didn't work for me, some because they didn't fit a role or purpose uniquely that wasn't better performed by another firearm, some (like the G23) because I have wanted to simplify the contents and logistics of my gun safe, and some I got rid of just to get something new to shoot and review. For whatever reason there may be, I have spent a lot of time getting rid of and purchasing new firearms. I usually make nothing on the sale of these as I don't really want to get in a position where I would be required to report income. I have walked away from some transactions when I felt something wasn't right and am happy to say that the vast majority of people I have dealt with have either been active or retired LEO with ID or CCW holders with ID or FFL holding dealers at some gun shows.

In the beginning of this blog I would occasionally post a "family" portrait of my weapons and put it up here, won't be doing that today but here's a list of both current and past firearms that I have owned over the past few years.

Current Firearms:

Handguns
Glock 19 9mm
Glock 34 9mm
Ruger LCP .380
Kimber Custom II 1911 .45
S&W 22a .22 LR

Long Guns
M1 Garand .30-06
S&W M&P15 AR 5.56/.223
Ruger 10/11 .22 LR
Mossberg Maverick 88 Security 12 ga.
Stoeger Condor Competition O/U 12 ga.
Mosin-Nagant M44 7.62x54R

OK, that was the "short list"...now for the big(ger)g one...

Former Firearms:

Handguns
S&W M&P .40 (x2 of them)
S&W M&P 40c
Stoeger Cougar 9mm.
Hi-Point C9 9mm.
S&W 637-2 .38
1952 S&W Chiefs Special .38
Sig P220 .45
Sig P239 .40
Ruger Security-Six .357
Glock 22 .40
Glock 23 .40
Kel-Tec P3AT .380
Bersa Thunder .380
Taurus PT1911-AL .45
Taurus PT1911-BHW .45
Charles Daly 1911 .45

Long Guns
Hi-Point 4095 Carbine .40
Mauser 98k 8mm
Mosin-Nagant M91/30 7.62x54R
WASR-10 AK 7.63x39

Quite a bit, there are a few I wish I still had, such as the Bersa Thunder .380. If I was to ever get my wife to start shooting and carry herself (like when monkeys flew out of my butt and the President said his health care plan was just a joke) that would be an excellent pistol for her use. Same goes for the Ruger Security-Six and the Stoeger Cougar. Both nice pistols I got rid of for some other reason long since forgotten.

Oh well, best not to dwell on the past but look forward to the future. Going on an outing in a couple of months with a bunch of old military guys and gals from my past, going to get some serious trigger time in with them and enjoy what I have the way they were designed to be enjoyed. Safe queens are for other guys, I want to shoot my guns!

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Helping out with the Wounded Warrior Project

Taking time off to give a bit back, and having a great time doing it!

Had the opportunity last weekend to volunteer a bit of time to help out some of our wounded vets from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. "help out" is a bit misleading, because I got to go fishing to do it. I don't normally go fishing but the company on this trip while doing it made giving a bit of my time up well worth it!

The Wounded Warrior Project has been running since 2003 to give our troops a much needed outlet to care, services and opportunities that for too long had not been part of the normal care plan for our deserving troops. This event was by an organization called TAASC, The Adaptive Adventure Sports Coalition, a group that seeks to give disabled individuals access to recreational and adventure activities that would normally not be available to them. By allowing them to participate and accomplish goals in this area, it helps boost their self confidence in themselves and their abilities. I also hopefully gives them the drive to accomplish more than even they themselves would expect from their lives.

The event I participated in was actually a water skiing event, as written about in the Columbus Dispatch article below. How I got involved with fishing goes something like this...A co-worked has an organization that he created on a website called Ohio Game Fishing (www.ohiogamefishing.org), its quite a big and sucessful site. One of his admins had been at a local reservoir and had run into some people from TAASC who informed him of the event. He volunteered OGF to provide some fishing fun for the vets, my friend, Brandon, posted it on FaceBook, I saw the post and volunteered...and that's about that.


The vet we took out on Brandon's boat was Denis Oliverio, a Marine Tank Platoon Leader who was shot in the left arm back in 2005 while engaged with insurgents in Iraq. The round that hit his arm did extensive damage and 5 years later and after many surgeries he still does not have full use of it. Despite this and some PTSD issues he manages to hold down a job helping engineer and design a replacement helo for the aging Sea King fleet used by the US Navy and Marines as well as work with the WWP to get the word out to the public about their mission. When talking to him I knew he was the "real deal" when he told me that his biggest worry after his injury wasn't for himself, but of how his Marines would be looked after and their welfare with him gone. That is how a good leader thinks and anyone that can operate at that level when their arm is nearly severed has got the ship pointed in the right direction to reclaim their life. Most of all, he was a great guy to hang with for a few hours. In typical military fashion there were plenty of fart and penis jokes to go around. You can click on his photo to the left to read his story from the WWP web site.

Denis at the front of the boat and Brandon in the middle on his phone

hey, I even caught a nice bass!

So all in all I had a great time. I am going to contact WWP to see if there are any other events in and around Central Ohio that I could help with. It's ironic that my year overseas was spent tracking and confirming these same service members who returned to our country with broken bodies and sometimes broken minds. I think that maybe I owe them more than just my respect and some more of my time to properly thank them for their sacrifice. And if I can have fun doing it all the better!

And the new firearm is....drumroll please...

GEN 3 GLOCK 19!!!hey, there's that Glock knife again!

So how'd I get it? I sold my G23 RTF2 to pay for it. WHAT?!? Get rid of the .40 for a "wimpy" 9mm?!? Yep, that's what I did alright. I have a G34 that I occasionally use for steel plates. After researching self defense loads to buy for it I found that many 147gr. JHP rounds available are only slightly less effective (on paper) than their .40 S&W equivalent rounds from the same manufacturer. This combined with some real world data and testimonials and opinions from others makes me confident in the real world stopping power of the 9mm as a defensive round. Like I posted a while back, "chaos theory" dictates that no outcome is predictable 100% of the time, but the 9mm Luger's long track record of service and use in both conflict and combat show that it is a good round to bet your life on.

9mm performance...not too shabby...

Somebody on another forum pointed out that saying a 9mm is underpowered as compared to a .45 ACP is akin to saying that a 20ga. shotgun is weak compared to a 12ga. It certainly does have less power, but just how many of us would volunteer to be shot by either a 9mm or 20 gauge just to see what it felt like? I didn't think so either...

As for the pistol itself? Its a 3rd Gen Glock, plenty of info out there on it and I have commented on it before so lets just say its a Glock. I had the choice to get the LEO package in either 3rd or 4th Gen configuration. I chose the 3rd Gen because it felt familiar, the texture on the grip would not be as irritating as on the RTF2 or Gen 4 grips (a major-minor bitch I had about the G23) and nobody complains about reliability issues with a 3rd Gen G19. On the plus side I get 2 extra rounds in the same size config as the .40 G23 (15 compared to 13) and as I pointed out in the review for that pistol, the size of the G19 is just about perfect for a dual use weapon. Whether on a duty belt or on inside the waistband as a CCW pistol, the G19 can fill either role equally as well. It is, in fact, the issue sidearm for the NYPD, but with a much highly noted stiffer trigger due to liability issues that make it pull much more like a revolver than a semi-auto.

Of course I made all of the standard modifications to this Glock that I do to all others I have owned:

  • Add a grip plug to the bottom hole at the rear of the pistol grip.
  • Switch out the slide stop lever with an extended model.
  • Replace the stock connector with a custom one, in this case a Ghost Ranger 4.5# model.
  • Add night sight, ordered an XS Big Dot system for this that should be here by the weekend.

I can use all of my holsters and gear that I got for the G23 so that saves me some money. I just need to get some more quality ammo to finish the transition, that and get out and put some rounds downrange with it!

Overall, I am very happy to have it on my hip.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

The GLOCK Model 78 Field Knife

DSCF1305Did you know Glock made knives? They do, and pretty darn nice ones if I may say so.  I went shopping today (more on my big purchase later but lets just say that this item compliments it nicely..) and one of the “accessories” I bought was this Glock model 78 knife.  I had read somewhere a review or testimonial some soldier had posted about how his Glock knife had been invaluable over in the sandbox and had opened MRE’s and ammo crates, cut holes in walls, gutted insurgents, saved him from both both sniper fire and IED’s and generally had been a bad assed piece of equipment.  I’m not planning on going back over that way ever again so for my purposes  it was a pure impulse buy because I thought it might be cool to do a quick review and post some pics of it….

Anyway, the knives were developed in cooperation with the Austrian military and are issued to various military entities throughout the world.  The style is not revolutionary or anything, just a basic fixed blade clip point knife that closely resembles the famous Ka-Bar knives used by Marines since WW2 but with a slightly thinner blade profile.  The blade itself is made with steel hardened to a RHC of 55 and topped by a polymer handle made from the same material used in their pistols.  It uses a simple but effective guard for the blade that keeps your fingers from slipping onto “the ouchy parts” without being obtrusive.  The blade is 6.5” long and the overall length is 11.5” with a weight of 7.13 ounces.  It comes with a matching polymer sheath that can be worn either on the right or left side of a wearer’s belt and includes both a locking clip for the knife as well as a clip to attach to belts and such .   Colors range from basic black, to OD green or Desert Sand, like the one I bought.

The knife feels good in the hand and seems to be very well made.  The blade seems thick enough to handle some serious use.  The edge was not razor sharp but more than adequate for most tasks I would think.  The model 78 below has a straight spine, while the other model, the model 81, incorporates a saw tooth edge on the spine.  The only fault I could really find with the knife is that the latch to retain the knife in the sheath requires quite a bit of force to disengage from the hilt of the knife to remove.  This is good in that you are probably not going to have this come out of the sheath when not needed.  Of course this is bad because the knife may not come out of the sheath exactly when it is needed…

The price was an affordable $28.99 today and that is about average from what I could tell from online pricing.

Overall, a pretty darn good knife for the money if you need one, or if you’re like me and just want one…

DSCF1311

Each knife is made in Austria

 

DSCF1312

The sheath showing the retaining mechanism for the blade on the left and the belt clip on the right.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

New Poll...Gunlistings.org or Armslist.com

I've done my fair share of buying and selling from online services and have relayed some stories about certain transactions on this blog. 98% of the occurrences have been positive experiences. You got to be wary, know the gun laws of your state and be sure of who you deal with. Trust your gut instincts when dealing with someone and always have a way out whenever you deal face to face, especially when not in a public place.

The two main web based services I use to buy or sell items are gunlistings.org or armslist.com..which do you prefer?

Feel free to post with any comments about either or other sources you use to buy or sell..

Poll results on interest in the ACR

Wow, totally forgot that this poll was still sitting at the top of the page! Got to remember to watch it next time. Well, the much vaunted and talked about ACR has been out on the market for a while and its selling much like any other $2,000 rifle does I guess. The articles on the web and in print about it have cooled off as other items have come into being, but it is still a very identifiable rifle on the scene today and at the forefront of rifle design going into the 21st century...

So how did you feel about its initial offering price being way above what the guys from Magpul originally told us it would be?..

58%
of you were like me, the exceedingly high price compared to what we expected turned us off of this rifle and back towards our familiar AR or other shooter of choice..










6%
of you have money to burn and a desire to be the first kid on your block to own one..








23%
of you were like "meh.." anyway to begin with..











and a suprisingly high 12% of you didn't know what all the fuss was about anyway...











The first couple of categories pretty much fell along the lines that I thought that they would. That much money for just a basic rifle would get you a top of the line DIG or piston AR and a decent optic as well as some extras, not surprising that most of you turned away. The big surprise was that 10+% of you didn't even know what it was, wow! How could you of missed it on the front cover and in stories in gun rags and on the internet over the past year telling you how awesome it would be, or the segment on Future Weapons?

new poll later today....

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

There is now twice as much to like about Slipstream Lube...

I have talked at one point or another on here about how much I like to use Slipstream Lube on my weapons. Made by Crusader Weaponry out in Utah, it has pretty much lived up to the hype the company puts out on it in my book. My weapons run without issues with it so far and are much quieter when moving parts meet each other. The "magic" of the lube rests in the use of nano particles as the primary lubricant suspended in a carrier oil to help it along. The supplier of the carrier oil they have been using suddenly went off the market and replaced it with a product much higher in price. Joe and George said "screw that" and found another carrier that works just as well and costs much less.

The result? SLIPSTREAM IS NOW BEING SOLD IN A FULL 1 OUNCE BOTTLE FOR THE SAME LOW PRICE OF $11.99 + SHIPPING!! THATS TWICE AS MUCH AS BEFORE!!






Seriously go buy some. The standard disclamer applies here, I am not being paid or compensated by Crusader to push this stuff. I like the owners of the company and their product works for me, thats the extent of our relationship.

Seriously, go get some now.....click on the Slipstream lable above to be directed to the ordering page for your Slipstrem.

Some random thoughts....

On popularity...

According to my counter on the right hand column, this blog has been visited by over 43,000 visitors since the counter went live back in 2008. Not bad for a hobby I guess, it seems I generate somewhere between 30 to 150 hits a day and sometimes more depending if somebody links me. Cool. Blogger now has a new tool available in "Blogger in Draft" called "stats" it shows some interesting stuff like this little chart that shows the most popular posts that people have hit since it started tracking data back in May...

..people love that PT845...

On the black Army beret...

I was just mobilized back in 2001 when we first got issued our black berets per (then) GEN Shinseki's "everyone is special" program and had to wear them. Once a symbol of being an member of an elite unit in the Army (Airborne, Ranger or Special Forces) now all members got to wear them. Needless to say, hilarity ensued as troops that had never worn berets lead by leaders who had never worn then just slapped them on and went about their duties with a fuzzy bonnet upon their heads. I had at least an idea of what to do with mine (soak in hot water, shape to head, shave, repeat) to get it to a more felt like material and could manage to make it work for me. Many troops almost a decade later still fail to get it close to right. In my opinion, the berets are a useless piece of crap anyway, they do not provide any degree of protection in either hot or cold environments, do not shield a wearer's eyes from the sun and are difficult to maintain correctly. The Army realizes this and the only place you can wear them is in a stateside garrison environment, troops in Iraq or "the 'Stan" wear patrol caps or boonie caps instead. Yeah, they beret may look cool if worn correctly, but as I have pointed out not everyone can wear them right.

I much prefer the style of beret worn by European armies such as Great Britain and France. It is much simpler to wear (no stiffener and flash to worry about centering, no "touch the ear crap") and to me just looks better. Here the European style is shown being worn by a Canadian Soldier who was KIA in Afghanistan March 28, 2010. RIP Pte. Costall, for what its worth you rocked that beret solidly and I salute you for your service and ultimate sacrifice in our combined cause.

The movie Aliens and the colonial marines....

Watched this movie on Netflix the other night for the umpteenth time in my life, it is amazing how well this move has stood up against time, 25 years later the technology and feel of the picture is holding up well even with modern CGI and technology to compare it against. Most of the computers they show are old monochrome displays as were most computers back in the mid 1980's when this movie was made, but the look is still believable today and the story keeps your mind focused on it and not the details like monochrome displays. What I especially like in the movie is the depiction and use of Colonial Marines. Yes, some of their actions and bravado are way over the top, but it is a Hollywood movie for crying out loud. That overly macho crap is how the industry makes you believe that they are "real" soldiers and does not really reflect on how most military personnel conduct themselves. Its funny how some of the stuff portrayed in the film as it pertains to the military has actually come more or less to fruition in real life...

  • Women are more integrated today than they were when the film was made. Female combat pilots (like the one portrayed in the film) are almost commonplace these days. And while women have not be fully allowed to take positions in "combat specialties" in the Army, their contributions and valor in the War on Terror are too numerous to mention here.
  • In the film the officer monitors and tracks his troops remotely via camera, tracking devices and health monitors. This is much in the same way that our Blue force tracker systems work overseas and the integration of other systems with the individual soldier to give maximum transfer of real time information across the spectrum of resources available.
  • The Marines have a robot, Bishop, that is used in the film. Thousands of robots and drones are used daily in Iraq and Afghanistan to eliminate bombs and recon the battlefield.
  • Each Marine is shown wearing body armor. I got into the military back in the 80's and although flak jackets existed, nobody wore them for all practical purposes. Today, everyone wears them.

Other interesting points from the film...

  • The fictional M41A1 pulse rifle in the film are actually modified Thompson SMG's with Remington 870 barrels and Franchi SPAS-12 fore end.
  • The use of drop ships in lieu of airborne drops.
  • The Marines have a medic with them, something a lot of movies fail to include that are not primarily war style flicks.
  • The fictional Weyland-Yutani Corporations influence on the actions of the military closely resemble some of the interaction of modern companies like Halliburton and its former subsidiary, KBR with our contingency forces overseas.

If you haven't seen Aliens in a while, give it another go. While you are at it, check out Predator as well, another fine action film that plays as well now as it did a quarter century ago.

Monday, August 2, 2010

Not much on here lately...

...and for that I apologize. I have posted similar rants about not enough time to work on this and having some good ideas for posts but I think I just don't ahve the steam sometimes to keep it going like I should. Believe it or not I have been working on some literary horror fiction that has kept me away. Its a vampire tale but a bit different than what I have been seeing and reading about on TV and in print. It kind of started as some random thoughts after watching a few episodes of HBO's series True Blood about what I think would be cool traits for vamps to have, to make them more "believable" if you would.

For example in the world I am crafting here are some vamp facts that I have based them around:

  • Vamps do not necessarily fear sunlight, they are photosensitive and will sunburn badly and have trouble seeing in it, but they do not burst into flames or smoke.
  • Vamps do not have fangs, their desire for blood is due to certain biological requirements but can be satisfied by eating raw or undercooked meat in the right portions.
  • Vamps do not live forever, although due to their biology live much longer than humans (in the story the oldest vamp is about 150 years old and appears middle age.
  • Vampirism is an infection that affects the metabolism enabling vamps to heal and acquire much denser muscle tissue over time, thus giving them enhanced physical abilities but no "super" powers as it would be. One character, "Billy" an old Seminole vamp is described as being able to match any record bench press yet still run a 100 yards in 10 seconds..
  • Vamps can be killed the same as you or me or by withholding blood, the only difference is they would have a much better chance of surviving a wound that may be mortally wounding to us if not fatal right away (in the story the "senior" vamp carries several scars from WWI, WWII, Korea, Vietnam and The Beirut Bombings badges of honor as an American).
  • Vamps live by their own moral code under our laws, much like some bikers or other sectors of society. They value secrecy not because they want to, but because they know if discovered the government would kill them. They do commit some fraud to hide their amassed wealth, but give very liberally to charities for children, which most adore since they are unable to reproduce.
"Vampires in sunlight? blasphemous!!"

I'm writing this a bit out of desire to create, a bit out of boredom and a bit because my wife is encouraging me to do it. What started out as a collection of thoughts on paper is now up to 5 chapters and growing. Man, writing is harder than you would think. Research, editing, formatting...it all adds up.

As soon as I have it ready I will host it online for free for all to read.

A quote from Steven Wright...

When I was crossing the border into Canada, they asked if I had any firearms with me. I said, "Well, what do you need?"