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April 25, 2021

Gun Thread: We Be Back Edition! [Weasel]

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What's up, y'all? The blog is fixed! Oh, sweet baby Jesus the blog is fixed!!!! I will never, ever, ever take this good ol' 1970's technology for granted again. Composing in wordpad then cut and pasting as HTML was good enough for great grandpappy Weasel, and it's good enough for me! Hell, bring back the punch cards!

So, it's been what, a week or so since we've been together? I am definitely seeing ads and receiving email solicitations for ammunition, and prices seem to be creeping down, as well. It ain't exactly cheap, but it appears to be headed in the right direction. So please, if your economic circumstances at all allow it, start looking around and consider making ammo purchases. You don't have to go all nutty, mortgage the house and order a truckload, but as price and supply conditions improve, take advantage of the situation. If you hesitate and try to bottom-tick the prices, sooner or later they will spike again, and you may miss the boat. Look at it as an investment and use a dollar cost averaging strategy. Make sure your self-defense needs are covered, then start working on a reserve of practice ammo. 'kay?

And with that, let's get to the thread below, shall we?


******

Don't Be This Guy

Anyone who frequents a public range has met ths guy. He's the guy who thinks he's a hotshot and may be a range patron or part of the staff or even an instructor, which sadly this guy appears to be. This guy is dangerous both to himself and everyone around him, and he's teaching stupidity. I don't care who he is, when you see him, it's time to go find something else to do with your day. What did this Einstein do wrong? He cocked a loaded revolver, put his finger on the trigger, and surprise! I meant to do that!

  • Every gun is loaded

  • Keep your finger OFF the trigger until ready to shoot.

  • Know your target and what is behind it

  • Do not point a gun at anything you do not plan to shoot

  • Do not shoot anything you do not plan to kill

  • Don't be stupid

These rules aren't hard or particularly complicated, yet people break them all the time. When they do, the results can be disastrous. Fortunately, the Big Man didn't kill anyone, that time, but he was so busy showing off to the group he inadvertently gave them a great and up-close lesson in looking stupid. Range safety gets talked about a lot, but is often ignored, either by a jackass like this guy, or unintentionally by someone in a hurry or new to shooting.

So, don't be in a hurry. People make mistakes when they are in a hurry, or when they are unfamiliar with what they are doing. It is up to more experienced shooters to help newer ones gain competency in handling weapons, both through instruction and by setting a good example. Be aware of where the muzzle is pointed, keep your finger off the trigger, and do not hesitate to ask questions if you are unfamiliar with any aspect of a particular firearm's operation. Go s-l-o-w-l-y. Do things logically and methodically. I cannot overemphasize this, particularly as you begin learning more complex shooting drills or techniques.

When I was learning to shoot, it was on a 600 acre farm with my instructor, and we began each live fire session with a safety and first-aid briefing, including emergency communications and location information for first responders, should a call to them become necessary. Think about what you are doing and what role you would play in an emergency. It's a great way to start your day and doesn't take a lot of time. Whether you're at a public range or out in the woods, keep your eyes open and make safe gun handling a priority.

******

First up, our pal Blake shares a great range/match report:

A range I belong to had a match coming up I was really looking forward to. Rifle match, 2 shots each at steel targets at 200, 300, 400, 500 and 600 yards, with 1 shot at a ram at 750 yards, for a total of 11 shots.

This was a timed match, 3 minutes, eleven shots.

Because this was shooting with which I'm unfamiliar, I decided to do some prep, along with trying to get some adjustment data for the diopter sights on my K31.

I made the trip to a range that had a setup similar to what I expected to shoot in the match, made the shots, wrote down the elevation adjustments that it appeared I needed and went home.

Shortly after, I started questioning the data I had, because it was only one data set for these aperture sights and, well, I had doubts. So, the day before the match, I headed to my local range, set up at 25 yards, with the idea of getting zeroed at 25 yards which should put me on paper at 200 yards, and refine from there. The idea of a 200 yard zero was keep me on steel out to about 400 yards without having to really change anything with my sights. After the zero, I was going to rework my ballistics tables for the GP11 data and take it with me so I had the adjustments needed moving further out. Well, things didn't go quite as planned. It turned out, my nifty diopter sights appear to have a "wandering" zero, and, since I didn't have time to chase the problem, decided I'd try one of my other scoped rifles.

Yeah, things spiraled downward from there.

My first thought was to use my Howa 1500 chambered for 308. I had not shot this rifle in a long time, so, I wanted to see where it stood. It was a rifle I bought quite a while back, long before I really knew the ins and outs of scopes, rings, etc., and thought should be okay. Yeah, well, I assumed incorrectly. I could not get the rifle to zero at 25 yards! I finally looked at it, and realized the scope was adjusted as far as it would go. It physically wouldn't go any further. I looked closer, and realized I still had the original cheap scope rings on the rifle. Something I should have addressed years ago, but, quite honestly, I don't shoot scoped stuff that often any more, so, hadn't really thought about it.

So, plan C: I pulled out the Howa 1500, bull barrel, 243 Winchester. Now if anything is going to get the job done, the 243 should, right? I went to work on the rifle, got it going...and the afternoon breeze came up. To the point there was no way, with the target waving around the way it was at 200 yards, I was going to get anything approaching a useful zero.

On the way home, I pondered, and said, "To heck with it." I pulled the diopter sights off the K31, figuring I was good to 400 yards with the original battle sights and, after that, well, we'll see what happens.

I showed up Saturday morning, and, instead of the usual calm, we were shooting up a canyon with swirling wind that varied from about 8 mph to 25 mph. The wind was such the flags were going different directions at different distances. We had flags blowing toward us at 200 yards and flags blowing east to west or west to east, further out, depending on the whim of the wind.

I got some shocked looks when I mentioned my scoped stuff wasn't up to the task, but, thought I'd be okay with iron sights to 400 yards. Well, that thought lasted right up until I pulled the trigger, I was right down the center of the target, but, about a foot high! I couldn't believe it! At that point, my brain fell out of my head and I just couldn't figure out what was wrong. I mean, I'm shooting at 2600 feet of altitude, slightly up hill, but, not enough to account for being that high over the target!

I got done, missed everything in sight, sighed, looked at my rifle, and, much to my chagrin, I had moved the slider that lifts the rear sight all the way out to the 600 yard mark! No wonder I was so far off. And it also explained why I was on the target at 600 yards.

After the match was done, I satisfied myself that, yes, I was right, I can shoot the original battle sights out to 400 yards, by going 3 for 3 at 200, 300 and 400 yards. Amazing what correct sight adjustment can do!

Great report, Blake! Any day on the range is really a great day, amiright? And excellent job of thinking your way through the problem. Good job!

******

TargetMeister

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From time to time I like to feature a product that I use and like, and here is a great example, the Target Meister target stand.

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It is very well made, nicely finished, and setup takes just a minute with 1"x2" furring strips and a cardboard backer. I have had one of these stands for years and it still looks new! When disassembled, it takes up very little space and you're not dealing with a big unruly contraption made out of 2x4's. They're selling for $90 which is a little pricey, but still well worth the money, in my opinion. WeaselApproved!

******

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One of the ammo suppliers I have listed below is AmmoMan. I have always had good luck using this supplier and shipping is free with orders over $99, which isn't hard to meet. Browsing around the site, there seems to be a fairly good assortment in a variety of calibers. Not cheap, mind you, but the free shipping thing helps. Do your research and shop around.

Also available on the Ammoman site is a shot group analyzer. I poked around the instructions a little and it seems pretty straightforward, but I haven't used it. Maybe one of you will upload a photo of a target and give us a report on its usefulness!

******

Speaking of ammo, last week our pal Splunge posted a great question late in the comments, and I thought it deserved to be repeated this week.

Ah, I am so screwed. After eschewing shooting during a long stay in California, because every time I thought about doing the stupid paperwork they required, I got so pissed off that I didn't do anything, I am finally in a Free State and ready to shoot.

But what is this strange new world? I can order ammo online with no hassle, yes, but it's mostly out of stock and far more expensive than I ever imagined. The brands are different. I remember Federal being the good stuff, and CCI being OK range ammo, but there's like a million choices now, some of them are probably terrible, some wonderful, and I don't know where to begin.

I would have look for the archives of previous gun threads, but we all know why I can't do that. So, a couple of questions:
What are good ammo sources online?
What are good ammo brands, both the good stuff and good reliable range fodder.
Bonus question: where the hell can I find ammo for my 264 Win Mag rifle?
Posted by: Splunge at April 18, 2021 09:42 PM (RzGcW)

So help a brother out! What're your go to favorites - anything you can find, or are you being picky? If price and availability were not an issue, what would you recommend, and why?

******

Prices of Yesteryear
Our pal BertG hates us and wants us to be sad.

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I was in my stash the other day found these .22 shorts that I got at Wally World a long, long time ago. Maybe late 80s or early 90s?

I remember the days when you could prance right into a store like you owned the place, plunk down a couple of bucks, and get a box of ammo. *SIGH*

******

Next up, our pal GWB has found a new ammunition manufacturer.

Saw this through the Ammoland newsletter. Pilgrim Ammunition Self Defense Pistol Ammunition Now Available

Pilgrim Ammunition is evidently a new supplier. They make lead-free rounds, so CA compliant, among other things.

Mind you, the 9mm+P are $1.75/rd, and .45+P are $2/rd. They also have .380 for same price as the 9mm.
They are hollow points made of a copper core and a jacket of something else. The cases are not brass. They're probably made out of whatever the jacket is - both are shiny silver.

For the 9mm+P they advertise that it simultaneously gives 30% less recoil, but 75% more velocity, for 50% more kinetic energy. Without adding a rocket to your bullet, I don't see how you get less recoil AND more velocity AND more kinetic energy without changing the weapon somehow. It also claims a "dispersion" of 1 inch at 25 meters, whatever that means. Yes, I noticed the mixing of units, too.

One last fun bit - it's "CA-compliant" but it still has the notice about cancer-causing chemicals. Can you get cancer if you inhale too much gunsmoke? Or are they using some other "toxic" metal? I thought copper was now magical and made everything better?

How about you all? Anyone heard of this company or tried their stuff? What about their claims?

******

Lastly, our pal OrangeEnt shares a creepy call.

Well, a couple of days ago I sent off my renewal for my C&R. The check just cleared before the weekend, and amazingly, I received a robo-call on Monday from the "Alcohol....Tobacco....Firearms....and Explosives....ATF" with a warning that a local FFL holder had significant damage to their store. "Be careful and store your firearms and ammo when your store is closed." I ain't got a store, of course, because I only buy for my own use and fun, I don't sell anything. Checked the news feeds for that date, nothing.

Checked out the phone numbers the call provided for the AFT, er, the ATF, and the first number 887-637-5762, brought up stories about scam calls, but nothing on the number itself. The call also gave a local ATF number to call, 702-347-5910. The first google link was the ATF local office, but looking into the link, the number was not the same. I knew it was a scam call the whole time, but isn't it amazing that right after I renew a FFL '03 I get this scam call? So who has access to these records of FFL holders? Some anti-gun government hack? Some Chinese agent? Just some hackers looking to defraud? Guess I'd better look into buying a canoe.

Well isn't that interesting? Coincidence? What do you all think? I like Old Town canoes, myself.

******

Link-O-Rama

I'm really very seriously not kidding around anymore. Buy Ammo
AmmoSeek - online ammo search tool
GunBot - online ammo search tool
SG Ammo
Palmetto State Armory
Georgia Arms
AmmoMan
Target Sports USA
Bud's Gun Shop

***Mail Bag***

This weeks entry comes from our pal fungusboy. How many of you old timers can identify the gun?

Funny-Gun scaled.jpg

******

Please note the new and improved protonmail account gunthread at protonmail dot com. An informal Gun Thread archive can be found HERE. Future expansion plans are in the works for the site Weasel Gun Thread. If you have a question you would like to ask Gun Thread Staff offline, just send us a note and we'll do our best to answer. If you care to share the story of your favorite firearm, send a picture with your nic and tell us what you sadly lost in the tragic canoe accident. If you would like to remain completely anonymous, just say so. Lurkers are always welcome!

That's it for this week - have you been to the range?

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posted by Open Blogger at 07:00 PM

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