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Food Thread: Butts and Jalapeños And Soy Beans That Oink! | Main | Sunday Overnight Open Thread (6/23/24)
June 23, 2024

Gun Thread: Late June Edition!

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Howdy, Y'all! Welcome to the wondrously fabulous Gun Thread! As always, I want to thank all of our regulars for being here week in and week out, and also offer a bigly Gun Thread welcome to any newcomers who may be joining us tonight. Howdy and thank you for stopping by! I hope you find our wacky conversation on the subject of guns 'n shooting both enjoyable and informative. You are always welcome to lurk in the shadows of shame, but I'd like to invite you to jump into the conversation, say howdy, and tell us what kind of shooting you like to do!

Holy Shitballs! How in the ever-loving Hell did it get to be late June? And why is it so hot? Oh, right, unless you live at the North Pole it's supposed to be hot in June. Evidently we're in a "heat dome" as the weather people are now calling it. Not like it hasn't happened before, it was just called summer.


With that, step into the dojo and let's get to the gun stuff below, shall we?


PSA - Buying Ammo
For almost as long as I have been writing the Gun Thread I have been including a recommendation to buy ammo. Recently I have started to hear reports that loaded ammunition, smokeless powder and other reloading components may again soon become difficult to find. The reasons (at least the ones I remember now) have to do with manufacturers focusing on military production, and also something to do with China controlling or otherwise manipulating the gunpowder ingredient supply of nitrocellulose. Whatever the case, in an election year it won't take much to send the retail markets into a tizzy.

How much is enough? Good question and please let me know if you figure it out. I guess the answer is to figure out how much you realistically shoot to maintain proficiency times the number of weeks/months/years you think the supply might be problematic.

Just a heads up. Take stock of what you have and prepare accordingly.


Are you focusing on fundamentals?

This man has no watch!


Guns of the Horde
This week our pal Ed L sends us a report on the FN Lightweight High Power he recently brought home.

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The Belgian Gendarmerie's request in the mid-1970s for a lighter sidearm gave birth to the lightweight variant of the FN High Power. Officers complaining about the total weight of their sidearm and additional gear on their duty belts led the Belgian Ministry of Defense to request FN to develop a lighter version of the standard FN High Power. FN responded with a lightweight alloy frame variant of the FN High Power. This pistol is a surplus example acquired from AIM Surplus in January 2024 (thanks to whig for the tip).

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Externally, this pistol is identical to a steel frame High Power from the same period. You will have to pick up the pistol to identify it as having an aluminum alloy frame. The slide has FN's black enamel finish for its military contracts, while the frame is anodized. The soft edges to the lettering on the slide, and clear wear on the finish on the left rear of the slide indicate that this pistol went through refinishing at least once during its career. The "RN"; in the serial number is a code that shows this pistol was made in 1979. The black plastic grips are original from FN for the late 1970s. A hole on left side at the base of the grip indicates that this pistol originally had a lanyard loop. This indicates that this pistol was either a military or police sidearm, since only military contract High Powers included this feature.

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The alloy frame High Power is still controllable when fired, thanks to the ergonomics of the grip. Those with large hands may still experience hammer bite in the web of the hand between the thumb and index finger, though. The sights are basic rear notch and front blade. This target was shot off hand at 10 yards using Federal 124 grain Syntech ammunition.

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The 13 round magazine included with the pistol is spring-loaded. This feature allows the magazine to drop free from the grip when the magazine release button is depressed. High Power magazines will not normally drop free from the grip by design. The user will have to pull the empty magazine free from the grip.

Few alloy frame High Powers were ever sold commercially in the US. Practically the entire production run went to fill FN contracts in Europe. The Belgian Gendarmerie and Belgian police forces received the majority of alloy frame High Powers, although some went to other European police forces. If you're interested in an original FN High Power, AIM Surplus has these on sale (as of June 2024) for $899 each. That's significantly more than some other choices, but it's a lot less than what you'll have to pay for an original FN High Power today. The FN Lightweight High Power may be a vintage firearm, but if equipped with 15 round MEC-GAR magazines, it's still viable as a concealed carry pistol today.

Source: "FN Browning Pistols, Sidearms That Shaped World History," by Anthony Vanderlinden, 3rd Edition

Outstanding as always, Ed L! Congratulations and thank you very much!


Katana Korner

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If you missed the WeaselKatana backstory so far, please click here to get with the program.

Progress continues with the latest from our pal and togishi, Dave. Last week we saw the results from the Arato and Binsui-do stones, and this week we move along to the Chu-nagura stones!

<img alt=
Chu-nagura coarser - click to make more bigly

This is the chu-nagura stone. I usually use two different chu-nagura stones, one coarser and one finer to more effectively remove all of the remaining diagonal scratches from the kaisei-do. These photos are by no means text book perfect examples of each stage of polishing. They are more like, just what it happened to look like when I stopped for lunch or something and felt that there was enough progress to warrant an updated photo.

With traditional hand polishing you do five or ten strokes, then stop and clean off the blade. Evaluate your progress. Plan out your next five to ten strokes. Then repeat. With this type of slow methodical progress it is possible to get very meticulous and precise results, removing only exactly what needs to be removed and no more. In contrast, when someone tries to use a power sander or grinder to do this type of work, it only takes a single second to move a line, create a dip too deep to remove, or even cause thermal damage to the edge. The extreme amount of time this hand work takes makes it very difficult to be profitable. That is why pretty much nobody does it any more.

062324 chu-nagura 2 scaled.jpg
Chu-nagura finer - click to make more bigly

Here is the second finer chu-nagura stone. Now the blade has gone from scratchy and gray to shiny, but still largely lacking in forging details other than a few of the looser welds showing. You may not be able to see in this picture, but the scratches in the shinogi-ji (upper surface) are now lengthwise and the scratches in the ji (lower surface) are at a deep slanting angle. In sword polishing each stone is done at a different angle to make it possible to separate the previous stones coarser scratches from the finer scratches of the current stone. This method makes it possible to be 100% certain that all older scratches have been removed before moving on to the next stone.

I detect shininess! I detect shininess! The ol' blade is really coming along don't you think? Just FYI, I have special Japanese choji oil and white cotton gloves on standby for proper handling and maintenance once I have it back, but first there is still more polishing to be done, so stay tuned!


Repair Your Butt Crack!


Managing Recoil

About an hour long, so you may want to save this one for later.


1911 Field Stripping

Q: Weasel, is it possible to watch too many 1911 videos?
A: No. Unpossible.


Garand Restoration
Weasel wept through most of this one.


Career Change in Mind?
Remember when service people were pleasant and worked at their jobs in a conscientious manner?


Fast Freight!


Musical Interlude
The Stones and Gimme Shelter


Gun Basics 101
New video from the She Equips Herself gal! This week's video compares .38 snubbys..


Cigar of the Week

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This week our pal Diogenes scores again with this excellent review of the Montecristo Platinum Series Robusto

So after a couple weeks off and a trip to Texas, I was finally able to get back to the cave of Diogenes to sit back to enjoy yet another stick from the great sample bag. So out of the humidor popped one of the Montecristo Platinum Series Robusto. The website says this cigar offers a "bolder, richer blend, wrapped in a dark, Mexican Cubano leaf, the well-balanced blend of Dominican, Nicaraguan, and Peruvian long-leaf fillers will give you that fuller bodied cigar... " Ummmm, yeah, about that.

I have usually scored well with the Montecristo brand but this one was a Tale of Two Cigars.

Excellent, Diogenes! Thank you!


Here are some different online cigar vendors. You will find they not only carry different brands and different lines from those brands, but also varying selections of vitolas (sizes/shapes) of given lines. It's good to have options, especially if you're looking for a specific cigar.
Bobalu Cigar Company
Nicks Cigar World New!

A note about sources. The brick & mortar/online divide exists with cigars, as with guns, and most consumer products, with respect to price. As with guns - since both are "persecuted industries", basically - I make a conscious effort to source at least some of my cigars from my local store(s). It's a small thing, but the brick & mortar segment for both guns and tobacco are precious, and worth supporting where you can. And if you're lucky enough to have a good cigar store/lounge available, they're often a good social event with many dangerous people of the sort who own scary gunz, or read smart military blogs like this one. -rhomboid

Anyone have others to include? Perhaps a small local roller who makes a cigar you like? Send me your recommendation and a link to the site!


Ammo 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
Target Sports USA
Bud's Gun Shop
American Elite Ammo NEW!

***Mail Bag***

This week's mailbag entry is from our pal WTM. Looks uncomfortable.

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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?

digg this
posted by Weasel at 07:00 PM

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