6 months, 4 weeks ago
Field & Stream writes this about the recent SHOT show.
Range Day is the Monday prior to the Show’s opening when manufacturers demonstrate their wares. People like me are bussed out to handle the goodies. This year, Range Day sounded like the Battle of Dak To, or perhaps Fallujah, with the distinctive pop-pop-pop of full-auto fire, which was extremely popular amongst all the SEAL wannabes. Indeed, this was symbolic of the whole show, which has now become so heavily militarized that you have to look fairly hard for something designed to kill animals instead of people.
It’s David Petzal. Is anyone really surprised? Just a few days later, David writes to tell us why he finally got an AR-15.
I also liked that the DMR is a 7.62 and not a 5.56—as the former easily outranges the latter—and that it is a gas-piston rifle, and not a direct-impingement rifle. This keeps all the dirt and heat up front in the gas system rather than letting it pour back into the action in order to cycle the bolt.
The 18-inch medium barrel is chrome lined, which means you’ll probably never wear it out, and the match-grade trigger is a two-stage Geissele that breaks at 61⁄2 pounds. The buttstock is a Magpul PRS, and the grip is a MIAD. There is no carrying handle, just an endless Picatinny rail (four of them, actually) and excellent quick-detachable iron sights. Twenty-round Magpul PMag magazines are standard.
The weight…ah, the weight: My rifle, with a scope in high Leupold Mark 4 rings, a flash suppressor (highly recommended), and a vertical fore-end grip, weighs 131⁄2 pounds. This means I will not take it hunting, but then it is not a hunting rifle. It does mean that the DMR has hardly any kick, holds steady, and can put down aimed, controlled fire at the range very rapidly.
Finally, it is not compliant with California, Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Jersey, or New York restrictions. I take considerable satisfaction in that.
[ … ]
The 716 DMR is not a cheap gun at $2,970. But I’ve found that long after you’ve forgotten how much you spent, you can delight in the performance of what your money bought. I waited a long time to join the 21st century, but I went about it the right way.
Uh huh. So you did it right, did you? Well, you know what David? Your rifle cost you a lot of money. And it can shoot too, with sub-MOA accuracy. That’s great.
But 1 – 1.5 MOA guns can shoot to, and can take down animals and tyrants. And I take great pleasure in knowing that most of my guns would be illegal in California too.
But I don’t begrudge anyone their $400 Ruger rifle that will shoot 1.5 MOA, or their $3000 Weatherby that will shoot .75 MOA. Honestly, for many people, there isn’t much difference between them. And I advocate enjoying shooting for hunting, for target, for so-called “plinking,” and if need be for killing tyrants.
But I do have a confession to make. If I never shoot anything, never hit an animal, never hit the target, never succeed at any contests, I still love to shoot. I love it for the pure engineering behind it. I love the explosion. I love the idea of a projectile, and I love thinking about Newton’s laws. I love the moving parts, I love disassembling them. I just love the mechanics behind guns. I love the machine. God help me! I do love it so!
There. I’ve said it, and I feel better now. And see David, I’m not an AR-15 snob. In fact, I advocate that everyone enjoy shooting. I usually have a smile on my face when I’m shooting, and I get jazzed when I go shooting with friends and family. With Daniel it was a little different, sort of like a hard job when you have to shoot >> 1000 rounds a day for two years under duress. But that’s a little different. Daniel still likes shooting too.
For heaven’s sake, David, you don’t need to be so puckered. Smile a little. Be an advocate for others to enjoy the same passion you’ve been able to have your whole life. Don’t be jealous and petty and selfish. And don’t … I repeat … don’t, be an AR-15 snob.