I finally got it. The Mossberg 464 SPX.

I have already put a box of rounds through it, and I’m quiet happy with it.  Functionally it was flawless, which was a huge step up from the last Lever Action I bought, the Marlin 1895, which immediately had to go back to the factory for 6 weeks.

The accuracy was very good. I have to say that I really like the way this thing shoots.  It was shooting very accurately off hand.  But I need to get to a range that actually has a Bench so I can really see what this thing will do.

20150218_133628As you can see, I didn’t get the version with the flash-hider.  Because I thought about it and admitted to myself that I will never be doing anything with that threaded end anyway because if I want to go quiet, well, I’ll be using a very different weapon for that sort of work.  This is going to strictly be for hunting.  So I saved 50 bucks on got the shorter option.  I like the shortness of it.  It feels extremely short.  And light.  WOW, this rifle is light.  Seriously… it’s like 1/2 the weight of a Marlin 336.  I threw a tac-light on it just because, well, I can.  Other than a sling, that’s going to be the extent of add-ons.  I’m not decking this thing out.  In fact, I may remove the rails all together.  I’ve not decided yet.   The stock has GOT to GO!  I really can’t tell you how much I hate this ATI stock.  It detracts from the entire rifle.  I thought I had a Magpul CTR stock here at the house, but I think I remember that I had given it away back in Jacksonville to a guy in my church.  So I will be needing a replacement stock as soon as possible.  I don’t care if it’s a standard M4 stock or even a TAPCO… anything is a step up from this ATI.  Stocks should not rattle and wobble.  Ever.
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Along with the rifle, I grabbed a box of Remington HOG HAMMER ammo, as well as my favorite Federal Blue Box stuff for further plinking work.   I was going to get some Hornady LEVERevolutions for it… but I’m well familiar with how they perform, and wanted to try something new.

This gun will be used to harvest some delicious Venison this fall.  And with the Carolinas not having a limit on White Tail… I think I’m going to be harvesting a lot.   At least that’s the goal.  The hope.  One buys a rifle like this not for the collector value, but for the hope of adventures that one can have with it.

I think I’m going to paint it.  Just need to decide on how I’m going to go about it.

Gun Buying Regrets

We’ve talked about Regrets before… Selling Regrets.  But what about buying regrets?  Has there ever been a gun that you were just sorry as all get out that you bought?   Buying that one gun that just had you kicking yourself over and you just wish you never even seen it.  Now, I’m not talking about buying a gun and then finding it cheaper some place else… because you still liked the gun but are just pissed at yourself for not shopping smarter.  No, I’m talking about getting a gun that you just hated and are wishing you never got, seen, touched.
There have been some guns in my personal gun history that I didn’t like as much as others… but honestly I really can’t think of a gun that I wish I had never bought.   Usually I’ve always been able to flip that gun for same money or maybe even a bit more than what I was into it.
I really can’t think of one that I regretted buying.   There was a .30-06 Mauser I bought in American Fork that couldn’t group under 4 inches at 100 yards… But when I sold it, I made a couple hundred bucks on it.  There was an AK-47 I picked up in Orem that had a drastic cycling issue… But I got more out of it on a Trade In than what I had into it, and I did have some fun with it while I had it.  So that did leave me coming out ahead, so I’m not sorry I got that one either.
No, I think all my Gun Regrets all stem from Selling Guns, not Buying them.
Fact:  Buying a Gun is NEVER a Bad Idea.
The only real buying regrets I’ve got are the “I should have bought it” regrets.  For example, I remember seeing a Steyr AUG for 600 bucks.  This was back in my BYU days and I was a broke college kid.  I had the cash, but chose eating food instead.  I could have got it though.  Wish I did now.  Just the value on the resale would have been worth the sacrifice for that investment.  I came across a pair of matched Colt SAA’s for the price of 1,000 each.  Sequential serials.  At the time, I had less appreciation for those guns than I do now, so I passed.  Now?  I’d club a thousand baby seals to get one of them.
Again… Buying a gun is never a bad idea.
Unless it’s from a shady guy in a back ally out of the back of a van… that’s probably not a good idea then.

The Ultimate 1911 for Carry

The Ultimate 1911 for EDC (Every Day Carry) has got to be the classic Light Weight Commander.

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Those simple wood grips, with the simple blacked out finish… No Ramp rear sight… This is an example of LW Commander Perfection. It doesn’t get any better than this.

To me, this is the just the ideal 1911, period.  It’s the most flexible, capable 1911 you can get.  When you step away from this pattern, you step into more specialized, more limited areas.    You can easily rock an LW Commander in an IDPA match, and win it.  You can easily take that same gun and wear it for week concealed.  You go to a 5″ Government if you like.  And that’s fine.  But packing it concealed every day gets to be tedious.  Especially if you are getting in and out of vehicles all week.  You can go shorter than 4″ if you like… makes packing it much easier, sure.  But you sacrifice reliability in a way that I just find to be unacceptable.   Maybe you don’t need a reliable sidearm.  Huh… Well, someone is buying Kimber Ultras.     No… to me, the LW Commander just has it all.   The question though is WHICH light weight Commander.

ruger_lightweight_commander_1911_3Ruger is all over the place with their new LW Commander.  No, it’s not that I’ve been a Ruger Fan Boy lately, it’s just that Ruger is really “Doing It Right” lately.   (Granted – their new “Custom” LCP should be an LC9S, but that’s another topic)  I really like what Ruger has been doing lately.  5 years ago – I may have had to hurt you should you have suggested that I’d be saying that.  But it’s true.  Ruger is making some fine products, and their 1911’s are getting better.  If anything, they are really worth taking a look at.

 

The Remington R1 has impressed me.

20141210_203851I recently had the change to really get into a Remington R1 pistol, shoot it (a lot) and examine the guts.
Shockingly well made.  The internal machining was clean and precise.  The parts fit together without any slop, or tight spots.  The finish as smooth and even and consistent… and attractive, if I might add.  Overall, I liked it a lot.  For the money, the R1’s seem to be a fantastic Bang for the Buck option.  You are getting a lot of 1911 Goodness for a very reasonable amount of money…. a couple hundred bucks over a Glock.  (This one was sporting optional Crimson Trace grips, which add about 350 bucks for the Master Series)
Accuracy was very good with most rounds fired.  Excellent with some.  The worst was with Aguila FMJ’s, but the R1 was redeemed with Federal and Hornady ammo.  Remington’s own UMC ammo was not tested.
I didn’t record FPS #’s as I did not have a Chrono.  I still need to buy another one.
No Malfs were encountered, and I do not anticipate many would happen, as this is a good 1911 built right.
I’m very much looking forward to the new 1911’s made in the new facility in Alabama where the Remington R1 are absorbing Para USA like a Big Green Borg Cube…  We’ll see if the R1’s are as good as they used to be.

Still can’t stop thinking about it…

311606_3980500584336_2101987202_nI know I’ve talked about the Mossberg 464 SPX before.  I know I’ve said that I wanted it.  Passing fad sort of want… But lately I’ve been thinking about it a lot more.  Can’t get it out of my mind.  Stupid sort of thing… like a pop-song that’s stuck in your head.

Gah… If I’m still jonesing for it this hard later this week, I’m going to have to do something about it.  Something drastic and terrible.   Like just buying one.

Okay guys – now talk me out of it.

Between Gun Wants, and Gun Buys

We all say that we “Want” that next cool gun… But the reality is that Want isn’t the same thing as “That’s the next on the list after this payday” sort of thing.  I’ve said that I want probably every gun on the market at one point or another.

For example, the Ruger Scout Rifle.   You bet, I wanted that.  Still want it.  But then the actual practicality of it comes home to roost and when it comes right down to spending my own actual dollars on it – I really don’t think I’ll be buying the Ruger Scout any time soon.  Instead, I’d probably buy a Savage Scout, or the Savage Hog Hunter.

I say I’d really like to buy a Browning Hi-Power.  In reality I’ll probably end up with a CZ 75 variant of some sort.  Probably the 75 BD POLICE model.

This isn’t so much “settling” for a lesser gun or anything like that, but it’s more like taking a stern look at the realities of price and availability or making a more rational decision on something more practical for your actual use.

Examples of this abound in my Gun History.  How about yours?

Aguila Ammo

1510461_10204845850879480_2840497620785206226_nAguila Ammunition.  I’ve been shooting a bit of it lately and I have some observations.  For a Mexican Import, it’s really not bad stuff.  It seems to be loaded pretty consistently and groups decent enough.  It’s not as tight as Blazer Brass or Federal white box stuff… but it’s not bad.  It’s somewhere in a C+ to B- grade I think.  Which for FMJ range ammo for practice, isn’t bad at all. The downside is that the stuff shoots dirt as hell.  I’ve noticed more smoke and far more fouling afterwards.  Clean up after shooting this stuff shows a lot more carbon and residue than most commercial ammo.

But hey, with ammo being not as easy to find as it is now… I’ll take some Aguila, no problem.  I like it far better than Remington UMC stuff.

 

SHOT 2015 was rather lackluster.

No, I didn’t go to SHOT.  And I really don’t think I missed out on much this year.  Looking at all the new Products that came out at the 2015 SHOT Show – very little impressed me.
SIG’s new Electro-Optics – Very cool. But damn, the market really doesn’t need another 1200 ACOG Alternative. Granted – this Bravo 4, is nicer. Better glass, better field of view, yada yada yada… But it’s 1200 bucks.  And then there is the Leupold D-EVO. Which is cool and different, but for hell’s sake it’s a 3 thousand dollar package.
What the Market really needs – are some new good, solid AR type Optics in the 200 to 400 dollar range that don’t suck and are not made in China. Is that too much to ask? Has the Gun Industry not realized that we’ve had a losing economy for the last decade?
You know what I’m sick of?
Teases. Companies that Show us something cool and here’s the next SHOT SHOW, and you are still pimping it – and still not taking orders because it’s Vapor Ware. Show us what we can order. I want to see what I can have. That being said – I’m also really sick of all that MILITARY LAW ENFORCEMENT ONLY crap. Stop making Fantasy Guns for Storm Troopers and make some Available Guns for the Sheepdogs. What can I buy that I can use to defend my Liberty with? So me THAT. That’s what I want to see. Something new and innovative and cool and not too expensive and something that I can place an actual damn order on. THAT’s what I want to see.
Glock’s new CORE MOS line is nice… Finally that Longslide 10mm we’ve been wanting.  That’s cool.   But not really cutting edge.
The SIG P220 10mm’s are awesome.  We’ve only been asking for that for a Decade and a Half.  FINALLY!  That’s almost the coolest thing at SHOT… but we’re not there yet.
That Taurus Curve – Stupid.  The TCP with Wings – Stupid.  The View – Stupid.  Taurus – instead of trying to come out with new stupid shit, how about you start making good, simple, solid guns?  How about you try that?
CZ I think has nailed it with that new Scorpion Evo pistol.  Make it a simple Carbine and it would be a real home run.  CZ remains a steady climber in quality and consistency and making guns I would be willing to spend my own money on.
Speaking of spending money… Beretta’s 92 Centennial looks amazing.  But it’s 3 grand.  Make a regular Bruniton finished version that’s… oh… say… Not more than 1200 bucks… make it a regular production item… WINNER.
You know what – That frame mounted safety would sure go a hell of a long way to help silence a fuckton of critics.   But it’s only on the Centennial and was on the Billenium.   The A3 should have had that.  That with a Vertec frame… Damn.  I’d buy two.  Seriously.

But you know what the coolest thing at SHOT show was?  For me that is…
This.  The Crye Precision Six12, with the Salvo Suppressor on it.

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I want that Six12.  That’s the coolest damn shotgun – but even then the thing came out last year.  But that Gun Muffler packaged like that… Damn.  That’s cool.  So there’s that.  The coolest thing at SHOT.

Gun Cleaning


Firearms Ownership is a long and proud American Tradition.
Before you shoot your new firearm for the first time, it’s a good idea to clean it and learn the mechanical functions before you load it. Cleaning guns is also a long and proud tradition. If you plan on shooting a lot, you will be cleaning your gun a lot as well. But don’t worry, this process is simple and enjoyable.

Work in a well lit, and ventilated area that’s safe for gun cleaning. A easy way to prep your gun cleaning area, is to cover your desk, table, or bench with a plastic trash bag. Spread the bag out flat, and then cover the plastic with newspaper or paper towels, or a reusable cloth that you don’t mind getting dirty and stained… like a Washington Redskins T-Shirt.

Make sure the gun is unloaded and clear. Check twice. Take all the ammunition, and make sure it’s well away from the firearm. Check to make sure the gun is unloaded two or three more times. It’s okay to be OCD about this. We recommend putting all the ammunition in another room or secured in your gun safe, a locked drawer, or other designated spot where you wont easily dip into while you are handling your firearm. Check to make sure the gun is unloaded one more time.

Safety Glasses and Protective Gloves are a good idea. Solvents and Lubricants can cause skin irritation. Especially in your eyes.

Now we can Field Strip the gun. This is the basic break down to the gun’s basic components. For a semi auto pistol, the parts are generally the Barrel, Slide, Frame, Recoil Spring and Guide Rod, and of course, the Magazine. Double Action Revolvers, all you have to do is open the cylinder. Single Action Revolvers, pull the cylinder pin and remove the cylinder from the frame.

We like to start with the barrel. The the barrel is going to be the dirtiest, as this is where the combustion happens. Because of this, it’s going to take the most work. Some propellants will leave residues and chemical compounds that can be toxic to humans and can be corrosive to the barrel. Firing residues can also hold moisture which can degrade barrel life and accuracy, so we want to get them out as soon as we can.

Apply solvent to your bore brush or bore-snake at the bristle end. Run it through the bore five or six times with a bore brush, or once or twice with a bore-snake. Always go from Breach to Muzzle. This will break up the fouling in the bore. But we’re not through with it yet.
Quite note: Never dip the bore brush or snake into the solvent bottle. Doing so will contaminate the solvent. Instead, drip or spray the solvent on to the brush or snake. I do this over rags made from cut up political campaign or pop-music shirts.

Wet the bore again with your solvent of choice and let it sit a moment to allow the chemicals time to do some work for you.

After a couple minutes of soaking, give that bore another good scrub with the brush or snake. If using a rod type cleaning kit, switch the brush off for a patch holder and mop out the bore. This is the great thing about a Bore Snake… It does the mopping every time you pull it through. We recommend getting one for every caliber you own a gun in.

Once the barrel is clean and shines like a glass in a dish soap commercial, use a patch to apply a nice light coat of gun oil through the bore to help protect it from moisture.

If you are cleaning a revolver, repeat the above steps through each chamber in your cylinder.

Use a nylon brush with some solvent to scrub the components of your gun. The frame, the slide, and your magazines. If you have removable grips, it’s a good idea to carefully take them off to clean under them. You don’t want dirty solvents and oils to pool up under there. Check all the nooks and crannies for any buildup of gunk. This is like cleaning behind your ears. No short cuts! You want to practice good Gun Hygiene!
For semi-autos pistols make sure you clean the length of the frame rails, matched by the slide rails and under the extractor. For revolvers, make sure you scrub around the forcing cone, the face of the cylinder and the cylinder ratchet and ejector star. With a Single Action Revolver, make sure you clean that ejector rod!

Now that it’s all scrubbed clean, run a cloth over everything and wipe it all down nice and dry. Take a moment to inspect all the cleaned parts. Take time to appreciate the craftsmanship and details. And make sure all the parts look like they are in good working condition.

Your firearm is really a little machine, and all machines run better lubricated. Lubricants are critical to reliable function. Using a good lubricant that’s recommended for your firearm, apply a light coating over all the components. Not too much though, as excess oils can attract contaminants, such as dust and unsolicited advice.

Once all the components are lubed, reassemble your firearm, and give it a good function check it to make sure that the gun is operating as advertised and the safeties and trigger are all good to go. After you cycle the action a few times, it’s normal for some lubricant to seep out. Just wipe it off.
Give the firearm another good wipe down to remove all your oily finger prints and appreciate your having participated in a cherished American Tradition.   Now, all that work done, secure your firearm, clean up any mess, and don’t forget to wash your filthy filthy hands.