AR-15 Ammunition And Barrel Twist Rate

Herschel Smith · 19 Feb 2017 · 7 Comments

There are a lot of articles and discussion forum threads on barrel twist rate for AR-15s.  So why am I writing one?  Well, some of the information on the web is very wrong.  Additionally, this closes out comment threads we've had here touching on this topic, EMail exchanges I've had with readers, and personal conversations I've had with shooters and friends about this subject.  It's natural to put this down in case anyone else can benefit from the information.  Or you may not benefit at…… [read more]

U.S. Optics Moves To Montana

BY Herschel Smith
23 hours, 26 minutes ago

Into the redoubt, they are.

A manufacturing company that has been building custom rifle scopes and optics for 26 years in Southern California is relocating to Kalispell.

U.S. Optics, a leader in the firearm optics industry, announced the relocation to the Flathead Valley on its website, saying there may be a brief pause in production while it brings the new facility online, but assured customers “we will far exceed our previous production capabilities.”

The company is on track to move into its new quarters south of Kalispell in September.

The Montana Governor’s Office of Economic Development and Montana West Economic Development helped facilitate the relocation.

Ken Fichtler, chief business development officer for the Governor’s Office of Economic Development, said U.S. Optics reached out to his office in April about the possibility of relocating to Montana. The company also was considering Texas as a possible relocation site, Fichtler said, as it considered potential sites with “a closer cultural fit.

“We went up against the state of Texas in terms of incentives, culture and location,” he said, adding that U.S. Optics was impressed with the “center of excellence for this type of manufacturing” that exists in the Flathead Valley. “We were able to put together an incentive package that appealed to them.

A Big Sky Economic Development Trust Fund grant and property tax abatement were among the incentives offered.

Another drawing card to Montana, Fichtler said, is the Montana Photonics Industry Alliance, a Bozeman-based network of Montana optics and photonics companies, entrepreneurs, laboratories and universities. Montana State University’s Optical Technology Center also was a factor in U.S. Optics’ decision, he added.

Down Range Solutions Group recently acquired U.S. Optics, and will continue doing business as U.S. Optics, according to a press advisory issued in June by mergers and acquisitions division of Helena-based Ascendant Advisory Group.

According to U.S. Optics’ website, the genesis of the company’s commercial off-the-shelf product line is “rooted in custom scopes built to satisfy the needs of military and law-enforcement personnel, competitive shooters and hunters …

The only mystery here is why they would have stayed in California so long.  Like Remington (Alabama) and so many other manufacturers, they need to be in a culture where they can thrive.

Stag Arms still operates in Connecticut, Kimber still operates in New York, Rock River Arms still operates in Illinois, Springfield Armory still operates in Illinois, and Mossberg still operates in Connecticut.

Why?  Do they want to go out of business and have to lay off all of their employees?

How To Survive A Bear Attack In America

BY Herschel Smith
23 hours, 34 minutes ago

PJM:

Make plenty of noise while you’re in the wilderness. Bears don’t like surprises, and will generally shuffle off in another direction if they hear you coming. Traveling in a group helps to make more noise. And most importantly, pay attention to the environment. If you see or hear signs that a bear is close, stay calm, backtrack, and get away from the area. If you’re camping, hiking, or otherwise visiting “bear country,” do yourself a monumental favor by packing bear spray.

In the entire article I see no mention of a rifle, shotgun or large bore revolver.  Therefore, the author must be trying to get somebody killed by a bear.  What else could you conclude?

I don’t even go into the woods in the Southeast without a gun, much less would I go around brown bears without one, or more.

We Can’t Just Pull Our Gun And Shoot Someone

BY Herschel Smith
1 day, 23 hours ago

NYT:

In a classroom on the campus of the Border Patrol Academy here at the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center, Andrew Andrade, an instructor, is guiding a group of future Border Patrol agents through an intensive Spanish language-training course.

Across campus, Ryan Choi instructs another group of Border Patrol trainees in self-defense tactics. “It’s not like the movies,” he said as the trainees paired off. “They aren’t going to stand up and fight, they’re going to charge you.”

In another part of the campus, a Border Patrol instructor enters a building set up to look like a barn where he finds two men counting money with what appears to be packages of drugs. One of the men yells at him in English, while the other man yells in Spanish. Both men move around, gesturing wildly with their hands. Dan M. Harris, chief of the academy, stands nearby urging the instructor to size up the situation. This simulated encounter is used to teach new trainees to consider all options before using deadly force.

“We have to slow it down and think,” Mr. Harris said. “We can’t just pull our gun and shoot someone to get out of bad situation. We have to use our brain.”

Hmm … so let me think about this.  Cops all over America policing U.S. citizens pull their guns out all of the time, and oftentimes let go a barrage of rounds, sometimes hitting their target, sometimes not, sometimes killing innocent people, all because of “officer safety.”  They must get home safely at the end of their shift, no matter what, even if innocent people perish at their hands.  They do this with utter impunity, with no accountability by the courts, the people, or their blue-costumed buddies.  Every little Podunk town now has a SWAT team with tacticool officers who want more than anything to go raid somebody’s house.

And yet the border patrol must think before unholstering their weapons in the middle of an invasion across our borders.  What’s wrong with this picture?  I think I’ve seen it before in Iraq and Afghanistan.  Yes, I know I have.

AR-15 Meltdown, Continued

BY Herschel Smith
1 day, 23 hours ago

The Rolling Stone War On Guns

BY Herschel Smith
1 day, 23 hours ago

Rolling Stone:

In 1980, the nation’s gun-violence epidemic hit close to home for Rolling Stone when John Lennon was gunned down by Mark David Chapman. For the magazine’s founder, the slaying in New York sparked a now-four-decade commitment on the gun issue. “It all started with Lennon,” says Jann S. Wenner. “That tragedy. Trying to make sense of it. Or make something good come out of it.” Within months, Wenner had launched the Foundation on Violence in America, a nonprofit that began a public-education campaign, including PSAs starring Oprah Winfrey and Walter Cronkite. But momentum quickly stalled. “It became obvious that the beginning and end of this was the NRA,” Wenner says.

So I guess nobody mattered except John Lennon.  Nice people, they are.  But what they ran smack into was us.  The NRA is sometimes effective, sometimes not, and could be much more effective if they would end their stupid rating awards to politicians for poor voting records.

What Rolling Stone gets wrong on this is what all of the other progressives get wrong.  We won’t let them take our guns, no matter what else obtains.  The NRA thinks the way they do because we do, not vice versa.  The NRA is merely a manifestation of our political power, but there is so much untapped power there.

Rolling Stone lost.  Don’t put a pretty face on this, guys.  It makes you look stupid.

Update On Open Carry Of Firearms In North Carolina State Parks

BY Herschel Smith
2 days, 22 hours ago

If you will recall, I discussed signage in Mount Mitchell State Park that led me to file a complaint.  I had an extended email conversation with Bryan Dowdy with the North Carolina State Park Service.  It is reproduced below.

Mr. Smith,

Your email complaint was forwarded to me for a reply.

The ‘Welcome To’ sign as pictured in your post is correct.   Per North Carolina Administrative Code, 07 NCAC 13B .0901(a) and (b), FIREARMS;  The possession of firearms whether they are openly carried or carried concealed are prohibited in / on all North Carolina State Parks lands and waters unless a person has a valid concealed handgun permit and thus that person may possess a concealed handgun provided they are adhering to the requirements set forth in G.S. 14-415.11.  There are three exceptions to this Rule in that the State Park lands and waters at Falls Lake, Jordan Lake and Kerr Lake State Recreation Areas are owned by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and subject to separate federal regulations governing firearms.

I have included the applicable NC Administrative Code below for your information.

Additionally, we do not permit hunting on State Parks lands (including at Mount Mitchell State Park) so anyone openly carrying a weapon or hunting black bear or other animals on the State Park would be unlawful.  You may be confused with the US Forest Service lands and/or North Carolina Wildlife Game lands which border State Park lands around Mount Mitchell State Park which do allow limited hunting.

SECTION .0900 – FIREARMS: EXPLOSIVES: FIRES: ETC.

07 NCAC 13B .0901 FIREARMS: WEAPONS: EXPLOSIVES

(a) Except as provided in Paragraph (b) or G.S. 14-269, no person except authorized park employees, their agents, or contractors, shall carry or possess firearms, air guns, air soft guns, paint ball guns, bows and arrows, sling shots, or lethal missiles of any kind within any park.

(b) A person with a valid concealed handgun permit issued by one of the United States that adheres to the requirements set forth in G.S. 14-415.11 may carry a concealed handgun on the grounds and waters of a state park. Persons acting under this exception should take notice that certain Division managed properties are owned by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and subject to separate regulations governing firearms. Accordingly, concealed handguns are prohibited at Falls Lake, Jordan Lake and Kerr Lake State Recreation Areas.

(c) The possession or use of cap pistols is prohibited. The possession or use of dynamite or other powerful explosives as defined in G.S. 14-284.1 is prohibited.

(d) The possession or use of pyrotechnics is prohibited except for pyrotechnics exhibited, used, or discharged in connection with an authorized public exhibition and approved by the Director of the Division of Parks and Recreation, or designee. Persons wishing to possess or use pyrotechnics in connection with a public exhibition, such as a public celebration, shall file an application for a special use permit with the park superintendent. All applicants shall enter an indemnification agreement with the Department and obtain general liability and property damage insurance, with limits as determined by the Secretary or designee, which are reasonably necessary to cover possible liability for damage to property and bodily injury or damage to persons which may result from, or be caused by, the public exhibition of pyrotechnics or any act(s) or omission(s) on the part of the applicant(s) or the applicant’s agents, servants, employees, or subcontractors presenting the public exhibition. The Division Director or designee may deny an application as deemed necessary to protect the public health, safety, and welfare, or to protect the natural resources of the park unit.

History Note: Authority G.S. 14-269; 14-410; 14-415; 14-415.11; 14-415.24; 113-8; 143B-135.16; 143B-135.43;

Eff. February 1, 1976;

Amended Eff. October 1, 1984; January 1, 1983;

Temporary Amendment Eff. July 2, 1997;

Temporary Amendment Expired September 29, 1998;

Amended Eff. January 1, 2014; April 1, 1999;

Transferred from 15A NCAC 12B .0901 Eff. April 1, 2017.

Thank you for your inquiry and we hope this information adequately addresses your concerns.

Sincerely,

Bryan Dowdy


Bryan,

Thank for your thoughtful reply.  You are correct about hunting – I was thinking about area appurtenant to the state park.  I appreciate the correction.

However, the administrative code to which you referred simply does not say what you said it says.

It discusses concealed carry, and since when I recently visited Mt. Mitchell I have a CHP, I complied with the law as written.  However, the admin code is simply a recapitulation of already existing laws concerning the carry of concealed handguns throughout NC.

The admin code simply does not say that open carriers must be permitted, and that still appears to me to be in contravention of state law.

Sincerely,

Herschel Smith


Mr. Smith,

Subsection (a) of NCAC 07 NCAC 13B .0901 FIREARMS:,  clearly states that no person except authorized park employees, agents, contractors shall carry or possess firearms unless they have a concealed handgun permit or fall within one of the categories in G.S. 14-269 (e.g. law enforcement officers, retired law enforcement officers, active duty military when acting under orders to be armed, etc.).   This prohibition is defined as open or concealed carry of any firearm.

This original Administrative Code prohibiting the possession or carrying of any firearms, open or concealed has been in place for at least 30 years with the exception where we amended the Rule in January 2014 to allow persons with Concealed Handgun Permits to possess a concealed handgun on State Park lands.

(a) Except as provided in Paragraph (b) or G.S. 14-269, no person except authorized park employees, their agents, or contractors, shall carry or possess firearms, air guns, air soft guns, paint ball guns, bows and arrows, sling shots, or lethal missiles of any kind within any park.

Sincerely,

Bryan Dowdy


I understand your position Mr. Dowdy.  I don’t want this to be contentious, I just want clarity and I think we’ve achieved that.  One final question, sir.

I note that you’ve referred to administrative code, not general statutes of NC.  To me, this is an important distinction.  I work in an area where we must comply with the CFR, but everything is open to interpretation since these are “rules” and “regulations” rather than “law.”  As such, Congress never voted on them – they merely empowered someone else (i.e., the executive) to make such rules.

I take it that you see the administrative code as regulations / rules, but your agents apply those regulations as laws?  If so, then you have effectively banned unpermitted carry when it is not banned by state law (as long as said carry is open).  I see that as a constitutional and legal issue ripe for litigation.

Thank you for the exchange sir.

Herschel Smith

My readers and I have discussed the difference between “law” and “regulation” in excruciating detail before, so there is no reason to recapitulate that conversation.

To date I have not received a response to this last email.  As you can see, my charge is that the NC State Park Service and appurtenant groups (NC DoJ) have promulgated regulations (i.e., that all carry of weapons in state parks must be permitted, whether open or concealed) that are simply not supported by state laws, since North Carolina is a traditional open carry state.

At least, contrary to Wake County Sheriff Donnie Harrison, he doesn’t assert that open carry is disallowed in state parks.  This is smart and complies with North Carolina law, but the requirement for permitting in state parks for open carry simply does not.  This is ripe for litigation in my opinion.

The Open Carry Of Guns In State And National Parks In North Carolina

BY Herschel Smith
2 days, 23 hours ago

WRAL.com:

Wake County Sheriff Donnie Harrison said, for example, that visible sidearms wouldn’t be allowed at a similar rally in North Carolina.

“Protests, you cannot carry,” Harrison said, adding that gun owners need to know the nuances of the law.

Those who carry guns openly can’t do so at organized sporting events. Schools are off limits, and so are state and federal parks.

Upon reading this, I sent a note to Wake County Sheriff Donnie Harrison, and since the note didn’t mirror to my own email address, I will reproduce it here as best I can remember.

“Mr. Harrison, as best as I am aware, and I have recently discussed this with a ranger who represents North Carolina on these issues, you are flat wrong on the open carry of weapons in North Carolina state parks.  Furthermore, you don’t control the regulations for national parks, and no such regulation exists for national parks, except that you must comply with the laws of the state, and North Carolina is a traditional open carry state.

You have communicated material false information to readers.”

I have yet to receive a reply.

Sig Sauer Reaffirms Safety Of P320 Pistol

BY Herschel Smith
2 days, 23 hours ago

Ammoland:

… individual attempts to perform drop tests outside of professionally controlled environments should not be attempted.  “SIG SAUER is committed to producing only the finest products,” said Ron Cohen, President and CEO of SIG SAUER. “Safety and reliability have been and always will be paramount to the SIG SAUER brand.”

That sounds rather contradictory to me.  Furthermore, the Sig CEO didn’t do himself any favors when he said that no gun is drop safe.

He’s made three points here, and he’s wrong on every single one of them.

The first is that any gun will fire if dropped from high enough, and if it lands just the right way on an unforgiving surface. This is untrue. Many good modern handguns would likely disintegrate on impact before the forces involved induce firing. My Sig P250 – the P320’s dad – has a firing pin block that would probably put it into this category. I would love to see a test where a P250 can be made to fire as a result from any drop, at any angle, from any height.

The second point is that we’d ‘legitimize mishanding’ if guns were drop safe from typical distances. This is so stupid it actually causes my teeth to hurt. Back when the double-action revolver was the standard police firearm and the most common civilian firearm, mishandling was not ‘legitimized’ by their intrinsically safe design.

Finally, he asserts that guns are ‘inherently’ unsafe if dropped under ordinary circumstances, and by extension, we should have no expectation that they should be. This is again incorrect; it is entirely reasonable to expect that a modern handgun, when dropped in a typical way, will not discharge on impact. Most guns meet this standard, at least if we define ‘typical’ as a drop from waist height on to a hard surface, at any angle. Nobody is complaining that their p320 will fire if it falls from an aircraft. We are complaining because it might fire if it slides off the kitchen table.

I can’t imagine how Sig’s lawyers could have approved a statement like this.

At least the statement is a self inflicted wound.  I don’t know about the gun, since I don’t shoot Sigs.

The American Bar Association Is Anti-Gun

BY Herschel Smith
2 days, 23 hours ago

David Codrea:

The ABA’s House of Delegates approved a resolution recommending disarming American citizens based on accusations of “hate crimes” and being a threat, the American Bar Association announced Tuesday. Despite due process concerns raised by some who still view the Constitution as an impediment to total and arbitrary “progressive” rule, Resolution 118B passed by one vote.

While the resolution calls for “documented evidence,” that’s an arbitrary term and has no bearing on the quality of the evidence or of its admissibility. What is to be “verifiable” is a “procedure to ensure surrender of guns and ammunition pursuant to a restraining order” and a means to report resulting restraining orders to state and federal authorities to preclude the accused from buying guns and ammunition.

Instead of meddling in the affairs of other people, learn to be good lawyers, or figure out how to enforce ethics in the legal community.  God knows it needs it.  Just like doctors who want to question patients about guns in the home.  Good Lord.  You’d think they have enough medical problems to worry about, like whether they made an error that day that will cost someone their lives.  The error rate in the medical community is higher than in nuclear power, the airline industry or the pharmaceutical industry.

I wonder how many innocent people are in prison, or guilty people are running free when they should be in prison, because lawyers don’t know how to do their job?  Hey, I have an idea.  Go mind your own damn business.

The Army Wants An Everything-Rifle

BY Herschel Smith
2 days, 23 hours ago

Stars and Stripes:

The Army is hunting for a new universal assault rifle to arm infantrymen with a lighter, more powerful weapon as a potential replacement for systems ranging from carbines to light machine guns.

The Next Generation Squad Automatic Rifle would fill capability gaps at the infantry squad level, the Army said in a federal contract posting last week.

The planning is in the early stages and no formal contract has been awarded, but the Army’s solicitation for concepts is part of a broader push to modernize the force.

In July, defense contractors asked about the ultimate purpose of the new rifle, which was initially billed as a replacement for the M249 Squad Automatic Weapon, or SAW.

The Army answered that during the next two years, the government will decide whether a next-generation weapon should be able “to fulfill additional roles such as that of the squad designated marksman, medium machine gun, and the carbine,” according to the advisory posted on the government’s main contracting website.

The Army also has been at work developing a new cartridge to replace the 5.56mm round used by the M4 and M16. The aim is to develop ammunition that would be interchangeable with a next-generation weapon.

So the Army is saying, “We want a carbine that is also a light machine gun, capable of shooting any caliber, able to fill virtually any role we ask, with a larger bullet than 5.56mm, and oh, also serving as a designated marksman rifle for long distance shooting, even though we, the Army, have no such role or training as designated marksman.”  While they’re at it, let’s throw in ammunition that is just as light at the 5.56mm even though the bullet diameter is larger, so that women can carry the load.

I want … I want … I want … gimme gimme gimme … everything in one awesome package, right now, dammit!  Something tells me this isn’t going to go down well for the Army.



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