Sunday, October 28, 2012

Ohio Gun Collectors Association in Cleveland

The Ohio Gun Collectors Association (OGCA) held their only meeting in the northern part of the state at the I-X Center in Cleveland.

A empty cave
Sunday morning.  Empty.  Empty, and I must say it again, an empty cave.

It used to meet there all the time, but then Cleveland annexed the Cleveland Airport and the I-X Center, and that was the end of the gun shows in Cleveland proper.  I guess the mayor wasn’t interested in the taxes and revenue collected.  OGCA has found a new home and even though politics have changed in Cleveland, OGCA isn’t anxious in coming back.

It’s been a year since the last northern meeting, but attendance was down.  So were sales.  I thought the gun prices were high.  I saw a CZ-52, with two magazines and a cloth holster, and the seller wanted $425.  Maybe the price tag was misplaced, maybe it was a ploy to start a conversation, maybe he was just nuts.

I have an interest in collecting the Colt 1903/08 hammerless pocket pistol.  Like all Colts they have become very collectable.  I saw several, badly pitted, scratched and with high serial numbers asking stupid money prices.  Even the modern pistols were above store prices.

I did see one very interesting modification for your AR.  Outdoor Specialties ( has a hinge for your AR.   

AR modification
AR modification.  Makes your AR have a folding stock.
The device doesn’t change the length of the rifle, but allows the rear stock to fold against the rifle’s body.  It sits between the lower and the butt stock.  It’s heavy duty and well made and locks closed in a heartbeat.  

One of the features I found interesting is that it doesn’t allow your gun to fire when the it’s folded.  Why?  Beats me, but it’s a nice feature to reduce the size of the gun for transport or storage.  I'm sure you could come up with a few more advantages.

If you’re interested, contact Outdoor Specialties.  They have a lot of interesting products and equipment you many need.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Adventures in TRUGLO and what's in your pocket?

Recently I had a little trouble with my TRUGLO sights on my .40 S&W Sig.  The front light pipe had come loose.

I was about to affect a home fix with a tube of super glue when I decided to contact TRUGLO.  At their urging I sent them my slide (saving me the cost of having the front site removed and then reinstalled) and they said they could fix it and would check the rear sight as well.  Sounded like a great idea to me.

They also advised insuring the slide for about half the price of the Sig.  I hadn’t thought of that but I also got a tracking number.  I really don’t expect much of the tracking number other than to prove the post office received my package and sent it on its way.  Hopefully if it got lost/stolen the insurance would be sufficient to get a new slide.

TRUGLO returned my slide to me the other day.  They fixed the front sight.  
Truglo replace and updated my nightsights
Low light - easy to find.  Seeing your sights in the dark - PRICELESS!

And now all three sights glow in the dark.  I suspect they replaced all three pipes.  I’ve got to admit, seeing my sights in low light is a great feeling.  I can honestly recommend TRUGLO and their sights.

I also just got two new pocket holsters for my Taurus TCP from DeSantis Gunhide.

I bought the Nemesis, which was highly recommended to me, and the Super Fly.  I confess, I fell for the advertisement on the website.  I had a chance to try the Nemesis and it worked in some of my pockets quite well, but in others it wasn’t so hot.  The pocket, depending on its cut, size and tightness of the pants, sometimes let the holster turn sideways or allowed the holster to partially come out of the pocket.

super fly and Nemesis with Taurus pocket .380
Super Fly on left, the original Nemesis on right, my Taurus on top
The Super Fly has a Velcro-attached masking 'shield' that stabilizes and hides the holster and the gun’s profile.  The shield can be removed and the holster looks like the Nemesis, but with a different surface.  
The two holsters give me options and like my friend Rick says, “I like options.”

It doesn't fit in my pocket but I took my Czechoslovakian CZ-52 out and ran a few rounds through it.  It’s chambered for the coke bottle 7.62x25 Tokarev cartridge.  It’s reported (Wikipedia, where else?) this cartridge in this gun will penetrate a NIJ level II vest.  

I didn’t buy it for that.  I bought it because it is roller locked operated.  That’s the same system the Germans used in their WWII MG42 (7.62x57 Mauser) and their more recent MG3 (7.62x51 NATO) machine gun.  

The Czechoslvakian  CZ-52 with mag and ammo
It's a beast, but most people can control it quite well.

Does it recoil much?  Well, the empty gun weighs around 2 pounds and despite the non-ergonomic design, I don’t think the recoil is too bad.  It’s the sights that are really terrible, very small and hard for my older eyes to find.

The European and Russian perspective was, and seems to be, handguns are for very close personal combat but are more of an officer identification/status badge. 

It’s fun to shoot and the ammo is still easy to find.  I have two magazines and I believe they each hold 8 rounds.  The trigger isn’t what you would consider great, but I hit my targets at 30 feet.   

I’m pretty happy with it!

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Spare Parts

The verbal battle for the right survival gun continues.  What is the perfect tool for your continued survival?

The solution to this puzzle, in my opinion, depends on what you think will happen.

Will the world end in December as predicted by the Mayan calendar or will it be more of localized civil disruption?  

It makes a difference which Ragnarok you’re expecting.  A true end of civilization means eventually you’ll be using a bow with flint arrows while the other means that having a few spare parts and ammo will keep you in business for the year or two it take to reestablish order.  Don’t be surprised if neither scenario results in a new rule of order you would want.

Let’s consider the second option.  It’s a reshuffling of our society and you need to survive long enough to help establish your idea of order.  The AR is the current hands down favorite.  With so many machine shops making parts, you can find or fabricate pins, springs and firing pins.   

The AK on the other hand is more durable and more likely to not break.  The AK and its distant cousin the SKS are durable combat weapons.  

Simple design, but effective.   SKS ~ often over looked  as a survival tool.
They don’t have the accuracy of ARs but they are the Timex watch of the rifle world.  (You know, “Takes a lickin’ and keeps on tickin’!”)  They are less likely to break but it could be difficult to find parts in the chaos resulting from a temporary breakdown of society.

My suggestion, keep an AK or SKS and ammo to match if you think civil disorder will be a 3-5 year tag team event.

However, if you’re really serious about this, ask yourself what’s the weak point in all the common combat rifles and pistols?

It’s the magazine.  (I’m stealing from an e-mail from John Farnam.)  Without a functioning magazine, most combat rifles are tomato stakes.  They are hard-to-load single shot weapons at best and a continuous jam-o-matic at worse.  The same applies to your beloved semi-auto handguns. 

The European concept has been magazines are hard to find on the battle field, so the semi-auto pistol should retain them as compared to the American just-drop-'em-we'll-get-more-later point of view.
That leaves revolvers, and bolt or lever action rifles.  If you seriously believe that following the election or some other date the sky will fall, Chicken Little will be vindicated, the Mayans will be right, you should be thinking revolver and manual action rifle.  As long as you can find ammo that fits you’re in business.

A S&W 8-shooter.  Two more rounds could make the difference between coming home or not.

What do I think?  It’s all poppycock.  Well mostly.  I believe we could experience civil disruption in limited local areas. 

The problem would be the two legged rats becoming encouraged and attemping to take advantage of us when a nearby disaster temporary soaks up local resources.

Of course you could be right.  Twilight of the gods could be just months away.  There will be no replacement parts, primers, brass cases, or steel unless you make them and that could include mining the ore.

Do you know how to harvest sodium nitrate from manure piles, how to mine sulfur and make charcoal?  Can you make black powder?  Can you make a flint lock or match lock?   If so, you could be the new top dog.

Frankly if world society crumbles, I believe most of us will die within a year and after a few more years the remaining few will be flint edge hunters and gatherers.  

 Welcome to the new paleolithic era.


Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Actors and Guns

You’ve see the ads, maybe watched the program.  Canadian SWAT team dealing with all the plot complications writers can throw at them.  Who?   Flashpoint.     
Looks good, works poorly
Okay, it’s not great drama, but it is entertaining.  Studly guys and sassy babes with guns.  What's not to like?
Here’s the thing.  Look at the drop leg holsters they are all wearing.  All the actors are wearing them wrong.  Of course TV is about image and not reality.
I understand the drop leg holster started with the British SAS, ( who dropped their holsters just below the level of their equipment/body armor vest.  The vest blocks access to the strong side holster, so the Brits wore the gun just inches below the edge of the vest, not a foot lower.  Our actors are wearing them too low.
If you need to wear one for real, the straps should be pulled very tight.  You don’t want the gun and holster flopping around catching and banging on doors and objects.  None of our actors has them strapped down enough.
The professionals tell me you pull them so tight it hurts.  And frankly, when I see the real deals wearing them, it looks tight.  Remember the gun we wear should be comforting not comfortable.
Hey, they’re actors, what do they know?  At least someone told them finger off trigger.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

No fair!!! You’ve got a gun too!!

It’s finally happened.  A failure of the victim selection process left two criminals on the right side of the gun. 

The 2 Oct 12 Akron Beacon Journal reports, “Two would-be robbers reversed course when their intended victim pulled out his own gun, Akron police said.”

The intended victim reports he was parking his car when he saw two men in a nearby car don masks and approach him.  

It was a good thing he was aware of his surroundings.  Seeing someone pull a mask on and then approach you is definitely a tell.  The professionals call it a “clue.”  I call it escalating to condition red.  

However our hero does seem to be a little unobservant as the article then states: “One of the would-be robbers opened the passenger-side door and pointed a gun at the man (victim - my word), police said.”

It appears the criminals really didn’t have their hearts in it.  Despite the drawn gun our hero was able to pull his CCW weapon and the criminals beat a hasty retreat.

It’s an interesting article but so lacking in details of interest to the CCW community.  What kind of guns were involved?  Why didn’t he drive away?  Why didn’t the criminal shoot the intended victim?  What age groups are we talking about?

Of more interest to me would be what did our guy think?  What did he say to the police?  And who called the police?  What did he say to his loved ones, friends and co-workers?  And how did they respond?  

Okay, it’s a reporter’s version of what the police said in a press release.  Both the police, reporter, newspaper and victim (He is a victim.  He was forced to look down the barrel of a gun and had to decide to draw his own weapon in defense of his life.) all have some interest in what is said and printed.

The important thing was that no shots were fired and nobody was injured.  I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again.  I believe this is most likely outcome between a criminal and a prepared person with CCW.  I can’t help wonder where he got his training?

Would your training prepare you to survive a similar attack?