All posts by MadOgre

Ruger Mark IV .22 Rimfire pistol

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Ruger Perfects Rimfire – Again: Introducing the One-Button Takedown Mark IV

Sturm, Ruger & Company, Inc. (NYSE: RGR) is excited to announce the latest development in the Mark Series line of pistols – the Ruger® Mark IV™. Ruger has long set the standard for reliable, affordable and accurate .22 LR handguns, beginning with the introduction of the Standard Pistol in 1949. Since then, the Standard Pistol has undergone a series of enhancements with the development of the Mark I, Mark II™ and then the Mark III™ in 2005.

While the heavily redesigned Mark IV maintains the same classic outward appearance as the Mark III, it incorporates a significant improvement customers will love – a simple, one-button takedown for quick and easy field-stripping. A recessed button in the back of the frame allows the upper receiver to tilt up and off of the grip frame without the use of tools. The bolt simply slides out of the receiver and the barrel can be properly cleaned from chamber to muzzle.

“We are thrilled to be introducing what we consider to be a monumental improvement to this iconic pistol that has been with Ruger from the start,” said Ruger President and COO Chris Killoy. “This one-button takedown alleviates the headache that our Mark III owners are all too familiar with and we anticipate the Mark IV pistols being some of the cleanest rimfires at the range,” Killoy concluded.

Other significant improvements include a one-piece grip frame that is precision CNC-machined from a solid piece of stainless steel or aluminum; an ambidextrous manual safety and a redesigned bolt stop for more ergonomic operation. The magazine drops free on release for faster reloads and a redesigned magazine disconnect safety prevents discharge when the magazine has been removed.  Internal improvements include changes to the hammer, sear, bolt and firing pin for smoother, more reliable feeding.   

Specific features vary by model, but the legendary, one-piece barreled receiver and internal cylindrical bolt construction remain the same. The robust design ensures permanent sight-to-barrel alignment and higher accuracy potential than conventional moving-slide designs. The Mark IV is compatible with a variety of Mark III aftermarket accessories including sights, scope bases and magazines. 

The American-made Mark IV pistol ships with two 10-round magazines.    

For more information on the Ruger Mark IV or to learn more about the extensive line of award-winning Ruger firearms, visit Ruger.com or Facebook.com/Ruger. To find accessories for the Mark IV and other Ruger firearms, visit ShopRuger.com or your local independent retailer of Ruger firearms.

This looks like it solves Ruger’s #1 problem since the Mk I pistol… the stupid take down.  I also like that the thumb safety is a lever instead of a sliding button.  Ruger is really starting to make sense in what they are putting out.   Now if they could just fix the stupid bolt release on the 10/22.
Also – that Hunter is DEAD SEXY.

LUCID HD7: Buy Again?

lucidhd7g3_0433webLucid has given me a couple HD7 Red Dot units.  An original first generation unit, and then later a third generation unit.  I’ve also purchased three other Gen3’s… One as a gift and the two others for my own use.   None of these units have had any problems.   And I still have one of the Gen3’s.   It’s the one Jason gave me.  It will continue to be used on one of my family’s AR’s until it goes belly up.  Which I don’t see happening any time soon.

I’ve sold a lot of Lucid optics to other guys, and have friends that have bought a lot of them as well.  Unfortunately Lucid has fall out of favor with them due to one issue or anther.  Which is odd to me, because none of mine had ever given me a bit of trouble.  My last HD7 still works great, every time, and battery life has been outstanding.  3 weeks ago, I changed the battery in my HD7 Gen3, and realized that that was the first time I had ever had to change the battery in it.  After 4 YEARS of service.   That’s AimPoint level stuff right there.  That’s impressive.

The question though… Would I buy another HD7?

Continue reading LUCID HD7: Buy Again?

AR PISTOL PROJECT, “KAHLAN” Update.

I’m just having fun with this thing… But the more I mess around with it, the more I like it.   I think this one is going to be hanging around for awhile.   20160910_164123

I decided to go two tone.  Because I just love two tone.  And I had a can of Rust-Oleum laying around.  And I was bored.  But I like the results.  I rolled a sheet of paper and slipped that over the barrel, under the guards, to give better contrast.     Once it fully cures out, the resulting finish will look a lot more matte.  Takes about a week for Rust-Oleum to cure.
As much as I wanted to use the Magpul Pro sights – they remain pretty dang expensive.  So I had these MBUS sights laying around. Okay, I didn’t even know I had them… found them in a box in my closet. BINGO!  But they will do just fine… and they look nice.
Also, when it comes to FDE, the Magpul’s darker tone of FDE is bloody perfect.   That should become the standard of FDE.  All FDE should be Magpul’s.
Now, I could just leave it as it is at this point.  But really… It does need a few things.  Such as a good micro red dot.  And something to keep my hand from slipping in front of the muzzle.

Fixed Bladed EDC.

One of the things I always have with me, is a small fixed bladed knife. Sure, I always have one or two folders with me as well… But I like having a small fixed blade on me.   Here’s the three I usually rotate though, depending on what the day has planned.

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Left to Right:
Benchmade’s Adamas Push Dagger.
Benchmade’s SOCP Dagger.
Ka-Bar’s Becker Necker.
Reason for these three is the light weight, small profile.  I never wear them around the neck, but they do well in a Boot or on the Belt.  Or other places one might hide a little knife.  The SOCP though, sometimes I’ll clip it to the front of the shirt like a pen.   Just easy that way, and quite fast to use.

The Necker has a nice usable shape.   I use it quite often for regular cutting tasks.  Cooking Prep and such.  It is one of my favorite all time knives.  I like the bottle opener too. Quite handy.   This one has a lot of utility while the others are strictly defensive tools.

The Adamas is an interesting bit of kit.  The chisel grind makes it not so useful for normal cutting tasks… but the double edge blade is wicked sharp.  For it’s purpose, it is scary effective.

The SOCP is the cool guy blade.  The point is like a needle.  The blade… not so sharp.  It’s not supposed to be.  This one is all about the deep puncture, with little other utility.   This is a rip cord type tool.  You pull it when there is no other option.    I know a lot of guys like to modify their SOCPs… but I’ve not done so yet.  I may in the future though.  Were I to do so… I think I’d strip the coating off it, bevel some edges, and acid etch the steel to give it some more character.    Of all the three, this is the one that comes with me most often.

 

Your Gun is Useless

That cool 2000 dollar rifle you bought.  Useless.  That pistol you bought that was all the rage on the internet… Useless.  What you bought is a very expensive Safe Ornament.

No matter how good that gun is… It’s as useless as tits on a warthog. Unless you have spare magazines for it.  Ammunition for it.  A ready kit to carry loaded magazines.   And unless you have trained with it.

There’s a reason that the Army and the Marines drill their people on Disassembly and Reassembly.   Do you know how to strip that new weapon down, and reassemble it?   Can you do that in the dark?  Do you even know your weapon?

I know a couple guys that have bought very nice, high quality arms… and they’ve done nothing with other than to remove it from the box and put it in the safe…. and they brag about having it.   Dude, you don’t have anything.   You don’t even own a Cartridge for it… you have nothing.

Take that gun out… Get to know it.   Train with it.

ADDENDUM:  I’m not talking about Collector guns, Collectors, or guns bought as investments.  So Investors and Collectors – don’t get your panties in a twist, this wasn’t about you.

AR Pistol Project, “Kahlan”.

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Built for me by a friend off an Anderson lower, and sports an 7.5″ Barrel, M.I. Handguard, Noveske KX5 Flaming Pig, Ergo Grip, Shockwave Blade Wrist Brace.
The Lucid will be replaced with something smaller and lighter so it can be returned to it’s normal home on a different AR.
Overall, I am quite pleased with the little AR.  It’s been proven to be an absolute tack driver.  I’ve not shot it yet with this muzzle device, so we’ll have to wait and see how she shoots now.  Same barrel, but different Barrel Nut, Different Muzzle Device, and different hand guards can all make significant differences.  I still need Iron Sights, and I’m going to need an AFG or some hand stops of some sort.

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Should a hand slip forward of the guard… That could be trouble.  So that will have to be prevented.  But I do like the snub-nosed look.
I want the MagPul Pro flip up sights on here, because not only are they great, but they are very compact.  I don’t want a lot of stuff on this piece.  I want it simple, but effective.  So everything will be as minimal as possible.

Acute New Gun Itch.

Lads, I’m suffering from an acute case of New Gun Itch.  It’s unbearable.  It’s come down to one of three options.

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This is the IWI ACE.  It’s an evolution of the AK-47, through the Israeli Galil family tree.  A gun shop just south of me has one at a reason price.   The ACE’s are expensive, but there’s really nothing quite like it on the market.  It’s probably the best AK type rifle on the planet, though it’s so evolved, it’s not really accurate to even refer to it as an AK type rifle anymore.   I’ve played with one a bit and it’s very very good.   I really like it.   The only thing about it though that I don’t like – is that it’s a Quad Rail gun with Rail Covers.  And I hate that.   Seriously, that alone could mean it’s disqualification from consideration… but everything else about it is just so dang good.   Bonus, it can use most common AK mag types.  Which is good, because I’ve more than a few.

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The CZ Bren 805 Pistol.   The rifle would be fine, but I’d want this as an SBR eventually so I’d take this and put a Pistol Brace on it.  The Bren is for those guys that want a SCAR, but want it for a Thousand Dollars Less.  And yes, I’m that kinda guy.  But also I want an SBR… so this meets and greets those desires perfectly.   I’m also a huge fan of CZ, more than I can say… I truly am.  I admire CZ a great deal.  There is really no other Firearms company like them.  The Downside to the Bren is that it’s 5.56mm and I already have a shorty 556 gun that I quite like, and it’s about to get even better.   So this would be slightly redundant, but I could see this taking over as primary rifle.

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Then there’s the Evo.   Another CZ that I really quite like.  The carbine version is rather long-ish.  But it’s super light and balances very well.   I dig everything about it.   Its’ a 9mm though, and that makes it a Good/Bad thing.  But the Good does outweight the bad.  And considering that I’m thinking about another short weapon firing a rifle cartridge, giving up ballistic advantages for not using rifle cartridge is really a non-issue.   The Evo’s mags are pretty easy to find for 20 to 22 bucks… It’s not really an issue either.

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I guess one could say that it comes down to caliber… but really it’s more of a Rock Paper Scissors deal here.   Any one of these three would be a winning a choice.  I really like them all.     I think I’m leaning to the Bren.

But then there is the Wild Card option.   A PTR-91 PDW.
i_bf6cb8d5ae78777369ff44a83e3c008aPTR-91-PDW

Which of course, is just another SBR Vehicle.    Once the paperwork came back on that one, I’d but an HK Collapsable stock on it.
So… 4… Four options.

Is there room at the table for a new Auto Mag?

 

NewAutoMagI got a press release from Laura Burgess Marketing that AUTO MAG is trying to make a come back.   First thought was “Wow, that’s cool!” Followed up by the next thought, “They’ll fail again… Because the same conditions that caused them to fail the first time are only worse this time.”

But is that true?   What caused the Auto Mag’s failure back in the 80’s?

First, let’s talk about what the Auto Mag was.  It’s whole point was to deliver a .44 caliber slug at .44 Magnum power, in an Automatic Pistol.   The idea to make the .44 Magnum feed in an Automatic, was to give it a Rimless Case.  To do this they used a .308 rifle cartridge, and cut it down to length, and there you go.   This actually worked quite well.  Unfortunately the ammunition was expensive back in the 80’s and is even more so now.

To handle the .44 Magnum level power in an automatic, the gun needed to be strong.  They used a fixed barrel for Revolver like Accuracy… this limited the locking options.  And since it needs a more robust locking mechanism, so they used a rotating bolt.  We also see this in the Desert Eagle.

The design of the Auto Mag is interesting.  It feels better in the hand than the Desert Eagle, more ergonomic.   And it’s much better looking.  But it’s also a complicated design and manufacturing it is a process that has more steps in it than other pistols…. which makes it a more expensive pistol to make.   Back in the 80’s, they didn’t have the CNC milling technology like we have today.  Even with that, there is a lot of hand fitting/finishing of the internal parts, and being a large pistol, requires a lot of material.  So it’s going to remain an expensive pistol to produce.

Expensive to make.  Expensive to shoot.  This is not a pistol for everyone.   This isn’t just Mercedes Benz level of handgunning… This is Maybach level.  This is… Exclusive.  Is there room at the SHOT Industry table for something more exclusive and expensive like this?

Absolutely.

Because it’s cool.   See, outside of Food, Shelter, and Clothing… Men only spend money on Two Things.  Sex and Violence.   And the Auto Mag is a combination of both distilled into a handgun that is above the means of the every day common man.    Like owning a Porsche 911 Turbo or dating a Super Model.   It’s Mid Life Crisis that you can hold in your hands.  It is designed to make everyone at the range envy you and want to be you.    And unlike the Desert Eagle, it has no history of being gaudy like something a New Orleans Pimp would have.  You’ll never see an Auto Mag in Gold Titanium Tiger Stripes.  Because it doesn’t need that…. It doesn’t need the Bling.  Because it’s one of those few things that are an instant Classic.  And there is nothing else like it on the market.   Comparing it to a Desert Eagle is like comparing a luxury yacht to a tug boat.

Auto Mag will sell every single gun they make.

But does that mean they will fail again?  Because it’s exclusively priced… and ammunition is terribly expensive…  Few people will be able to get one.   And you don’t want a company to crank out as many as they can produce only to sit in stockpile.   For the company to succeed, they will have to stay small… And keep the production tight to keep overhead down.   Success or Failure is going to depend on Management, not Marketing.   Since they are the only ones making anything like this.  It’s their game to win or lose… and that’s going to be an internal struggle, not external.

Suggestions for Auto Mag:
1.  Offer a Blued Steel version.
2.  Don’t do Distributors… Go Customer & Dealer Direct to maximize your profits for the first 5 years.  Or longer.
3.  Don’t look at how other gun companies market.  Look at how Omega and Breitling Watches markets.  Your customers are going to be their customers.  You’re going to be exclusive as hell… so be exclusive.

The 6 best cartridges you are not using.

More than in any other industry, merit has nothing to do with success.   Especially when it comes to Cartridges.  Here’s my The 6 Best Cartridges that you are not using:

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#6.  .338 Federal.  By simply taking a .308 case and blowing it out to .338 Diameter, Federal created something very special.  .338 projectiles are very naturally stable and aerodynamically slippery.  They retain a great amount of accuracy and impact energy at long range… all while operating in a non-magnum, short action.   A little more “push” than a .308, it’s kick isn’t as “sharp”.     This is a fantastic cartridge, and one that would do especially well in a suppressed AR-10 platform.  Think about that for a bit.  Big Bore, without big recoil.  Going bigger than .338 you start to get Nerf-like trajectories.   This is pretty much that Sweet Spot for bullet diameter and weight, while still being able to reach out there and smack something down.  A friend of mine took an elk with a .338 Federal at 600 yards.  Dropped it like it was pole-axed.  When he opened the Elk up he described the heart tissue was like “pudding”.

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#5.   .280 Remington.  Also known as the 7mm Remington Express.  Same cartridge, different name, because of “Marketing”.   This is basically a .30-06 necked down to 7mm/.284 diameter.  This is giving you better exterior ballistics than your .30-06, and more terminal effect at long range, with about the same felt recoil as your regular old .30-06.  And you are not giving up as much bullet weight as you are with .270.   It’s the perfect balance.   But too many guys have never even heard of it.   It’s not their fault though… There’s been a great deal of cartridges based on the .30-06 case, but the .280 Remington is probably the best of them.

35rem

#4.  .35 Remington.  What everyone considers a Lever Action cartridge, this one came out in 1906 and was first chambered in a Semi Auto hunting rifle.   It wasn’t until 1950 that Marlin finally chambered their new 336 rifle in .35 Remington.    This is a good upgrade over the .30-30, which has bullets typically from 150 grains to 170 grains… The .35 Remington has bullets typically from 180 grains to 220 grains, yet offers a similar trajectory to the .30-30.  So shooters of the .30-30 can pick up the Big Brother and will be able to make good hits right out of the gate.  There is a bit more felt recoil though.  More Push but it’s not a sharp or unpleasant kick.  It’s really quite moderate with velocities around 2100 to 2200 FPS.  Like the .30-30 it’s, good out to about 400 yards, but is far more capable at harvesting larger game.   It’s been referred to as Bear Medicine in Appalachia… referring to Black Bear.  And for that purpose, it’s probably ideal.  Especially in a light and handy Lever Action rifle.

7mm08

#3. 7mm-08.  By necking down the .308 case to .284″ you get pure magic that hasn’t really been explored enough.  That 7mm slipstream is far superior to .30 caliber… Allowing for improved long range results.  The only problem though is that while the 7mm-08’s projectile is smaller and lighter, it’s not as fast at the muzzle because the longer bullet is taking up more internal case volume.   Because of this, it gets dismissed off hand by most shooters that take a cursory glance at it.   It’s ideal for small framed shooters who don’t want recoil and don’t want to go down to .243.

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#2.  .257 Roberts.   It was popular in years prior and is now in a rather deep decline.  I was in Cabella’s the other day and mentioned .257 Bob and the guy had no idea what I was talking about.   The Twenty Five Bob is based on the 7x57mm Mauser cartridge, necking it down to a Quarter Bore.  The result is an accurate, flat shooting cartridge that gives very little recoil in return.  I’ve seen guys shooting .257 Roberts at over 4000 FPS…. Exploding prairie dogs like grenades.  And the cartridge can handle more typical 100 and 117 grain hunting projectiles at 3000 to 3500 FPS.   Smoking hotness.  More so than the more common/popular .25-06.

 

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#1.  .357 SIG.  One of the more misunderstood loads out there.   By taking a .40 cal case and necking it down to 9mm, SIG and Federal worked together to give you a cartridge that’s pushing that 9mm sized projectile about 200 FPS faster than the standard Luger/Para loads.

Now, it’s not really a .40 case, as it’s made with thicker walls to help withstand about 5,000 PSI higher in pressure than the .40.   It’s often compared to the .357 Magnum – which is just an unfair comparison.  You are not getting the heavier 158 grain projectile options out there.  And it’s not really a 9mm as .357 SIG projectiles are more bluntly shaped than those for the Luger/Para loadings.  It’s really it’s own little beast.  Most common commercial loads are loaded down from peak performance, as ammo makers want to make sure that the projectiles stop within the FBI recommended 13 to 18 inches of Gel.

This reminds me of how Porsche down tuned the Cayman.  The Cayman was priced exactly between the entry level Boxster and the high end 911 sports car.  It’s performance was also tuned to be exactly in between the Boxster and 911.  It was the Average because it was Tuned to be Average.   The reality is that you can take the Cayman, tune it to it’s full potential, and it’s going to stomp a mud hole in the higher end 911.   See, the .357 SIG is much the same.  There are loads for the SIG round that exceed 1700 FPS.  Out of a shorter barreled auto pistol barrel, not some 6″ horse pistol.  That is fantastic.

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Now lets not just end the conversation with Velocity.  There is more to it than that.   Reliability is another important factor.  A bottle necked cartridge is going to want to feed much easier as you have a smaller peg fitting into a much wider whole.  (this is why no one wanted to come in sloppy seconds after Eightball)  Also having that higher pressure impulse, the ejection is going to be much easier as well.  There will be less case drag as the slide pulls away from the breech, so sticking cases are not going to be a problem like you can get in some 9mm and .40 loads.

Accuracy is where the .357 SIG wins.   In talking with some US AIR MARSHALS, they discussed at length the importance of accuracy.  After Reliability – which was a Pass or Fail for them – Accuracy was their #1 factor.  Accuracy in a Firearm comes from Consistency, and that starts with the Ammunition.  .357 SIG is remarkably consistent, making it naturally accurate.  .45 and .40 are not naturally accurate.  Throwing projectiles shaped more like Pumpkins and little Missiles, it’s quite an achievement that they are as accurate as they are.  9mm has an easier time of it.  .357 SIG though, being accurate isn’t a challenge.  Kenyan that’s running away from a fat kid… it’s just too easy for him because he’s build for it.   Shooting at a full 25 yards, it’s far easier to make your hits with .357 SIG than with .40 cal even with the same gun.    If money wasn’t an object for everyone, I’d suggest getting .357 barrels for all your .40 cal guns and never look back.