Archive for the 'Guns' Category



Do You Need To Break In A New Rifle Barrel?

BY Herschel Smith
1 day, 7 hours ago

I run a break-in procedure on my rifles.  This involves (1) a round, (2) brush/solvent/patch full stroke down the barrel, (3) dry patch or mop, next round, and so on. This process continues for several dozen rounds, then you skip to three rounds before the same procedure, and so on until the process is completed at 50 or more rounds.  You’ll wear out at least two bore brushes this way.  I’ve done it.  A bore guide is handy, and a day at the range is necessary.  You can’t complete the process in under a day.

This is a question I have wondered about myself, and I’m glad that the video author found several high powered barrel manufacturers to discuss it.  The first two representatives essentially reiterated what I thought and what I’ve been told, except that they focus on the machining marks in the throat and chamber, while I always thought it had to do with machining marks on the throat, chamber and barrel (inconsistencies in the throat, chamber and barrel such as microscopic burs, ridges and chatter marks left by the machining process).

The third barrel manufacturer was slightly more nonchalant about the process.  You be the judge.  I think I’ll continue to run the break-in procedure when I buy a new rifle.  Any gunsmiths or tool and die / jig engineers are welcome to weigh in on this issue.

Kyle Lamb On Concealed Carry

BY Herschel Smith
3 days, 7 hours ago

I really, really like the job that Kyle did on this quick primer on his approach to concealed carry.  I confess that I don’t like concealed hammer revolvers.  I understand why he carries one since the hammer can get snagged on clothing.  Nonetheless, it forces you to make every shot double-action rather than single-action, thus having a slightly deleterious effect on my accuracy.  I have three revolvers, all external hammer.  I may not get the chance to shoot single-action, but I want that option if I need it.  Finally, my semi-automatic pistols are all medium to large frame guns.  With my arthritis and gnarled up knuckles, I don’t do so well with sub-compact guns.  I’m looking to get a compact 1911 for IWB carry.  For ankle carry, I use an airweight S&W .38 revolver.  I’m glad to see that Kyle addresses his ankle carry solutions.  One more point.  I notice that he doesn’t use a garter to hold the ankle holster up, and neither do I.  You don’t have to when you wear boots, and I rarely go anywhere without boots.

Kyle has given us some very practical, very useful tips for concealed carry.  This is must-see TV.  My favorite line: “If you’re going to carry a gun, carry a gun.”  Don’t do it sometimes.

Why The AR-15 Is The Greatest Rifle Ever

BY Herschel Smith
4 days, 8 hours ago

Readers know how I feel about the gun Eugene Stoner built.  Furthermore, readers know that we speak the name Eugene Stoner only in hushed reverence.  But that’s not my article title – it belongs to John Snow at Outdoor Life.

What we’ve seen over that time is the rise of the AR, which has become America’s most popular rifle, as well as the greatest battle rifle of all time.

How did this happen?

Think of the AR as a seed planted in the 1960s, when the military adopted the rifle, known both as the M16 and the XM16E1 initially.

The rifle got off to an inauspicious start in Vietnam. Shoddy construction in the form of barrels and chambers that hadn’t been chrome-lined, poorly made ammo that used the wrong type of powder, and the lack of cleaning equipment and training for the troops who were issued the rifles led to disaster on the battlefield. Rifles malfunctioned, and soldiers and marines died. The grunts and GIs lost faith in the M16, and Colt, which had purchased the manufacturing rights to the rifle from Armalite in 1959, had a public-relations disaster on its hands.

The fallout of that era created a tide of ill will and misinformation—like the myth of the M16’s tumbling bullets—that kept the AR seed dormant for decades while the military slowly modified the platform to address its shortcomings.

We’ve dealt with the issue of bullet flight before, and while the 5.56 mm round doesn’t tumble in flight (that would cause keyholing targets), it does in fact yaw in flight and rock back and forth, even boat tail ammunition.  This occurs at the beginning and close to the end of its flight.  See Small Caliber Lethality: 5.56 mm Performance In Close Quarters Battle, specifically see Figure 4.  This is not a myth.  It’s real, and reproducible.  The bullet also tends to fragment into multiple pieces, causing multiple wound tracks.  For this, see “Terminal Mechanics” on page 5.

The M16A2 made its official debut in 1982 and featured a heavier barrel, a faster twist rate, and a three-round burst mode in lieu of a full-auto setting. Then, in the mid-’90s, models like the M4 and M16A3 were introduced, with flattop receivers with Picatinny rails and adjustable telescoping stocks and shorter barrel lengths.

These evolutions in the platform augmented the AR-15’s excellent ergonomics, and gave the rifles more flexibility and modularity to adapt to different missions. And finally the seed could grow and bloom. What the AR needed for this to happen was a catalyst, and it came from an unlikely source: the 1994 Federal Assault Weapons Ban (AWB), which was signed into law by President Bill Clinton.

The AWB was authored by Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) and prohibited the sale of semi-automatic rifles with detachable magazines that had more than one of the following features: pistol grips, threaded barrels, bayonet lugs, folding or collapsible stocks, flash suppressors, and grenade-launcher mounts. Similar provisions applied to semi-automatic pistols and shotguns. The ban also limited magazines to a 10-round-maximum capacity.

The goal of this was, of course, to kill off these semi-autos in the name of public safety. The “logic” being that these guns—AKs and ARs, in particular—contributed to crime because of their cosmetic and ergonomic features.

At first it did seem that the AWB had taken the legs out from under the AR platform. Major gunmakers backed away from the category and stopped aggressively marketing the rifles to civilians.

“Before the assault weapons ban, ARs were expensive, hard to find, and didn’t work all that well,” says firearms expert Michael Bane. “When it came on, all the big players got scared off, and this opened the market. For that 10-year period [before the AWB expired in 2004], the little guy got the innovative edge because there was no one there to knock them off.”

Into that vacuum stepped entrepreneurs and innovators like Randy Luth, Karl Lewis, and Jack and Teresa Starnes who saw the potential of the AR and started introducing everything from aftermarket parts and accessories to complete rifles.

It was during this period that the AR realized its potential as a modular platform. The adaptation of the Picatinny rail system created new possibilities for accessories.

[ … ]

As a battle rifle, it can engage opposing forces accurately at distances a fighter with an AK couldn’t dream of. Accurized for precision rifle work, it can shoot tight groups at 1,000 yards. For hunters, it can be lightened up and chambered in hard-hitting cartridges for any type of large game.

But most important, the AR has become a bridge for shooters, connecting what used to be disparate communities of firearms owners and uniting them around its modular platform, encouraging people who used to stand toe-to-toe instead to fight side-by-side to protect our rights.

Any rifle that can boast this series of accomplishments deserves to be called the greatest, no question about it.

The author then gives us the personal perspectives of a number of people, including Kyle Lamb.

Kyle Lamb doesn’t have any patience for the haters. After more than two decades in the Army, most of it spent in special operations with Delta Force, he’s seen enough combat and has headed up enough training to know exactly what the modern-day descendants of the original M16 can do.

“People hate this gun. Even people on our side,” Lamb says. “But it is the most modular and accurate battle rifle we’ve ever had on the planet. The AK? It’s great too—unless you’re actually trying to hit somebody.”

Lamb’s military career, which started in 1986, coincided with the evolutionary refinement of the M16. This isn’t surprising, given that Lamb and his fellow soldiers in the special operations community were key players in perfecting the platform.

After Lamb joined Delta Force and started shooting every day, he learned how to get more out of the M16 and saw where it needed improvement.

In combat Lamb and his colleagues discovered one shortcoming was the sights.

“We showed up in Somalia with Aimpoints with big red dots. The dots were bigger than the dudes we were shooting at,” Lamb says. “So we got into better sights. Guys started adding regular hunting scopes to the rifles and making shots out to 400 yards.”

The tactical evolution of the platform progressed quickly from there. Lamb and other Delta Force soldiers upgraded internal components like extractors for greater reliability. They added free-float handguards to improve accuracy. They slapped on Picatinny rails to mount other accessories. The AR platform became lethal for everything from long-range engagements to close-quarters battle.

And don’t forget the 600 meter shots Travis Haley made in Al Najaf.  I’m sure there are a lot of M1 aficionados who would argue with the conclusions of the article, but the AR-15 platform has proven to be one that has killed hundreds of thousands of enemy fighters in Vietnam, Afghanistan and Iraq, from field shots to CQB.

David Petzal Gets An AR-15

BY Herschel Smith
5 days, 10 hours 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.

The Advent Of Handgun Optics

BY Herschel Smith
1 week, 1 day ago

Military.com:

Red-dot optics mounted on pistols are becoming so popular that some professional shooters see them replacing iron sights in the tactical environment.

Non-magnifying optics have long been the primary rifle sight for troops on the battlefield. Besides being accurate and durable, they are also faster than iron sights and perform better in low-light conditions.

Now the popularity of ultra-light red-dots — such as Trijicon’s Ruggedized Miniature Reflex, or RMR, sight — has compelled pistol makers to introduce special lines of their handguns specifically designed for accepting red-dots.

Glock just unveiled its Modular Optic System at SHOT Show 2016. It’s designed so shooters can install the red-dot of their choice with just a few tools. Smith & Wesson did the same at SHOT 2015 with the introduction of its M&P Competition Optics Ready Equipment, or C.O.R.E., pistols.

“Red dots on pistols are the future of handguns,” said firearms instructor Matt Jacques.

At SHOT 2016, Jacques was showing off Raven Concealment’s new Balor mount designed for an Aimpoint Micro T1 or H1 red-dot sight on a Glock with just a few simple tools.

Red-dots offer a single-sight plane, so the shooter doesn’t have to worry about sight alignment as with traditional front and rear iron sights, Jacques said.

I don’t have any red dot optics for pistols, but I find this concept to be very appealing.  I wonder though, if existing pistols can be retrofitted for these optics without significant rework and gunsmithing, and I am not talking about the dozen or more gunsmiths who work at Hyatt Gun Shop, who can do just about anything with anything.  Will shooters have to buy new guns in order to make this a reality for them?

Somebody’s Got A Screw Loose, And It Ain’t Smith & Wesson

BY Herschel Smith
1 week, 3 days ago

Guns.com:

A lawsuit filed against Smith & Wesson in federal court last Thursday alleges that the plaintiff lost a finger due to a defective part on an unaltered .380 Bodyguard firearm.

Randy and Vicki McNeal, of Trimble, Tennessee, are seeking $75,000 in compensation – as well as legal fees – from the Massachusetts-based firearms manufacturer as a result of injuries received when Randy McNeal attempted to operate the firearm, which the plaintiffs alleged was “damaged, defective and unreasonably dangerous” when first manufactured, according to the complaint.

According to the complaint, McNeal purchased the firearm for his wife from a dealer in Jonesborough, Tennessee, in August of 2011, and no alterations were made to the firearm since its purchase.

The injury occurred approximately two years later, in December 2013, when he was attempting to make the gun safe to show a friend at On Target Guns and Indoor Range in Murfreesboro, Tennessee.

According to the complaint, McNeal attempted to lock the slide back to ensure the chamber was empty, but due to an obstruction the slide wouldn’t come back all the way and lock into place. In an attempt to correct the problem, McNeal “briskly drew back the slide several times,” while following instructions from the gun’s safety manual.

However, the gun slipped from his grip, and when McNeal caught it, the firearm accidentally discharged, hitting his left small finger, ultimately leading to a need to amputate, the complaint says.

The plaintiffs, who reportedly had a firearms expert inspect the weapon, allege that the reason the gun could not be made safe – and ultimately the cause of the injury – was because of a loose screw on the built-in laser sight, which they say is “a defect/quality control issue.”

I’ve been hard on Remington for failure to come clean on their Walker fire control system.  But this is a loose screw.  I and every one of my readers has been at the range, or cleaning your weapons, or dry firing them, and found parts that needed to be tightened, refurbished, reformed, replaced, cleaned, or jettisoned for some other reason.

If you don’t want a screw to back out, check it periodically, or put Loctite on it [Be warned, this comes at a cost too.  AR aficionados don’t like the fact that Rock River Arms secures the Castle Nut on their rifles with red Loctite – it makes it virtually impossible to get off without a torch if you want to replace the buffer tube].

And above all else, when you drop a gun, do not try to catch it.  There are enough safety features on modern guns that catching it won’t prevent anything from happening except a little scratching when it hits, and may expose you to pulling the trigger of your weapon.  For instance, Ruger’s revolvers have their transfer bar, other makers have their features.

Again, do not try to catch a falling gun.  Ever.  My apologies for the awful music.  And for heaven’s sake, drop the gun, and drop the lawsuit.

Fisking The Smart Gun Crowd

BY Herschel Smith
1 week, 3 days ago

In case you haven’t noticed, the progressives talk to each other, or at least have unwritten signals where they focus on the same things like a hive in swarm behavior.  One such common thing is smart guns again.  Obama’s call was the latest signal to the hive to push smart guns again.

David Codrea fisks the smart gun crowd in his latest, and says “Despite it being an open forum, not one of the anti-gun “professionals” I took on has seen fit to engage, probably because they know they’d be further exposed as the agenda frauds they are.”  The comments really are astute, and I won’t steal the thunder by repeating them here.  You have to go read it all yourself, and in fact, you need to in order to understand what I’m about to say.

One year ago I said this.

… let’s talk yet again about smart gun technology.  I am a registered professional engineer, and I spend all day analyzing things and performing calculations.  Let’s not speak in broad generalities and murky platitudes (such as “good enough”).  That doesn’t work with me.  By education, training and experience, I reject such things out of hand.  Perform a fault tree analysis of smart guns.  Use highly respected guidance like the NRC fault tree handbook.

Assess the reliability of one of my semi-automatic handguns as the first state point, and then add smart gun technology to it, and assess it again.  Compare the state points.  Then do that again with a revolver.  Be honest.  Assign a failure probability of greater than zero (0) to the smart technology, because you know that each additional electronic and mechanical component has a failure probability of greater than zero.

Get a PE to seal the work to demonstrate thorough and independent review.  If you can prove that so-called “smart guns” are as reliable as my guns, I’ll pour ketchup on my hard hat, eat it, and post video for everyone to see.  If you lose, you buy me the gun of my choice.  No one will take the challenge because you will lose that challenge.  I’ll win.  Case closed.  End of discussion.

I’ll still eat my hard hat covered in ketchup, and I hate ketchup.  To date, no one has taken me up on my offer.  I don’t expect anyone will.

Read all of David’s piece here.

 

Guns Tags:

Pistol Caliber Carbines And Personal Defense Weapons

BY Herschel Smith
1 week, 5 days ago

I’m still not convinced about the necessity of the PDW (I carry handguns for PDW), but as I’ve said before, I’m still interested (I haven’t taken the plunge and bought one yet) in a pistol caliber carbine.  But I am not a fan of the 9mm.  I shoot .45 ACP, .38 Special and .357 magnum (I also have a new FN Five-seveN which shoots 5.7x28mm).  But thus far I’m unhappy with the PDWs and pistol caliber carbines I see.  There are few in .45 ACP that I’ve been able to find.

This SHOT show has been big in these weapons.  SIG Sauer announced their new MPX 9, which looks very cool and very sleek.  It isn’t an SBR, it’s a carbine.

sig-mpx-9

If the Kalashnikov is more your style, they have a new 9mm.

AK-9

Not to be outdone, TNW Firearms has a new 10mm rifle in the AR style.

 

TNW-10

I’m not too big on 10mm either, but what do you know, they have a .45 ACP version that looks nice (it sells as a pistol rather than a carbine, with no stock).

Notes From HPS

BY Herschel Smith
1 week, 5 days ago

David is in a throw-down with Gavin Newsom, who is a worm.  It might be interesting to watch this one play out.  I don’t do Facebook because I hate Mark Zuckerberg so much.  But for those of us who can stomach an account, I admit it can be used for good from time to time.

David Codrea:

Bottom line: Just because current or former members of the armed forces support “gun control,” it would be naive and dangerous to conclude that has made them weak or otherwise impaired their capabilities.

Oh, absolutely.  I pointed out that I doubted this Marines credentials, whether he was a grunt.  Nonetheless, that doesn’t mean he isn’t dangerous.  No grunt would misapply the phrase “military grade assault rifle” so badly.  But being a grunt and being a control freak don’t necessarily intersect.

Hognose disabuses you of the oft-repeated notion that a lone defender with a handgun cannot possibly be effective against terrorists.  Of course he can.

Via Uncle, this is a good idea.

If a Tennessee grocery store bans guns on its property and a black bear or wild hog kills or injures a person who otherwise would be carrying his or her gun, the gun owner would be allowed to sue the property owner if a newly introduced bill became law.  To accomplish that goal, the legislation allows any Tennessean with a valid gun permit to sue a property owner in the event of injury or death provided the incident occurred while in a gun-free zone.

Via Mike Vanderboegh, EOTech comes clean, or so we’re told.  But I’m still not sure what to do about mine.

Guns Tags:

Florida Sheriffs Fight Back Against Open Carry

BY Herschel Smith
2 weeks, 1 day ago

Tampa Bay Times:

Hoping to override legislation that would relax existing state law by allowing concealed-weapons permit holders to visibly carry their weapons in public, the Florida Sheriffs Association announced its own measure Wednesday.

The proposal would protect concealed-carry permit holders from arrest if they accidentally display a firearm in public.

Pinellas County Sheriff Bob Gualtieri — the FSA’s legislative chairman — says the measure clarifies Florida laws and diminishes the call to legalize open carry.

“The way we crafted this proposal is airtight and provides a fix,” Gualtieri said. “It states that no law-abiding, concealed-carry holder will ever face any sanctions for inadvertently exposing their gun.”

Gualtieri said the proposal is presented as an alternative to open-carry legislation bills and would help solve the “gotcha law” problem if someone’s gun was accidentally visible.

The proposal would require a person to intentionally and deliberately — “in a clear and obvious manner,” Gualtieri said — violate concealed-carry laws before they can be arrested.

The proposal also enforces a requirement that lets people explain circumstances surrounding their guns being accidentally exposed. If for some reason a concealed-carry holder is arrested, and it’s later proved their gun was exposed accidentally, the proposal calls for immediate expunction of the incident from their record.

“We don’t think it’s necessary to go from where we are today to full open carry,” Gualtieri said.

“The purpose of this is to solidly protect concealed-carry holders — I fully support everyone’s right to (lawfully) concealed carry. … We’re offering a solution so that people with concealed-carry permits aren’t going to get in trouble for something they shouldn’t get in trouble for.”

First, law enforcement has absolutely no business advocating one law or criticizing another.  It isn’t any of their business, any more than it’s the business of, say, the local utility to weigh in on whether something like open carry should be legal.

Second, accidental exposure of a weapon isn’t the only problem associated with open carry.  In a hot state like Florida, there are other reasons for open carry, like sweating your weapon when you are carrying IWB, rubbing your flesh raw when walking with IWB carry, etc.

Third, as we’ve discussed many times before, as a [sometimes] open carrier who lives in a traditional open carry state, the problems law enforcement allege to exist with open carry simply do not obtain.  They’re misleading you.  It isn’t the big deal they say it is, and blood doesn’t run in the streets.

Fourth (and this is perhaps the saddest thing we learn from the report), accidental exposure of a weapon is indeed an issue, and the Florida Sheriff’s association knows it to be so.  That’s the only reason they have proposed this as substitute legislation.  They want to placate weapons carriers, and they know that wasting court time for a shirt lifting in the wind is silly.  Thus, they’ve been down this road before.  They know all about arresting people for silly accidents that have no affect on anyone.

And they waited this long to do anything about it, and only proposed this law in an attempt to deflate open carry rights.  How disgraceful.  How absolutely contemptible.


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