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 September 2007

9-30-07:  OPEN LETTER TO CZ USA: As The Horde (my regular readers) knows, I am inclined to Arm Chair Quarterback the gun industry. In the past I've criticized Ruger, Remington, S&W, FN, Browning, and just the other day it was Detonics. Which doesn't really count because they are not even a company anymore. (again) Most of these criticisms are amiable and constructive... because I want all Gun Companies to succeed. I want them to do well. I feel that if one of them fails, it weakens the industry as a whole and a small part of our own Liberty has flaked off, like a rusting out 84 Bronco. It weakens the whole. Even if it was an insignificant portion.

Now I am going to go over one of my favorite companies... one that is above par and is in no danger of failing. It's just that they can be better. I've always been a fan of BMW, as you all know. The reason for that is that everything they do is just right. The lines, the proportions, the balance... just looking at them, they look right. Even the old outdated models are still great looking cars. CZ USA has the potential to be like that. They are almost there. So close... but they are not “just right”, yet. They have holes in the product line up that are less like gaps and more like chasms. Let's go through these holes, starting at the small end.

The Kadet Pistol and the Kadet Adapter. The Adapter is basically the Kadet slide and magazines that allow you to turn your CZ 75, P-01 or SP-01 into a .22. I've shot the Kadet and it is brilliant. The only problem with the Pistol and Adapter is that it is only available in .22LR and in black polycoat. CZ USA needs to offer three or four things with the Kadet. First off is an alternate .17M2 version. .22LR is great, but the growing popularity of .17M2 and the fact that no one else that matters is doing a pistol in it yet would put CZ USA at the front of the line. They also need to offer a longer barreled version for more serious target work. A threaded barrel option would also do very well here as a factory option. Gun mufflers are gaining back some popularity as they are more pleasant to shoot and are less annoying to neighbors when doing some pest control. Lastly, I want to see an option for a Satin Nickel finish. CZ offers the 75B in Stainless now, a customer might want to top it with a Kadet Adapter that matches.

For the P-01 and other pistols for more serious work, Tritium needs to be a factory option right off the bat. For the P-01 specifically, I'd like to see a “P-01 Operator” version. It would come from CZ USA directly with night sights, a stainless or tungsten guide rod (not the rubbish plastic one they have now), 25 LPI checking on the front strap, and an option for .40 caliber. I know CZ makes a Compact in .40 but it is different... while it has the same frame as the P-01, it doesn't have the same decocker lever. Same options should be available for the larger SP-01 handguns. And while we are on the subject of Stainless... Why not make an option for Stainless slides and anodized frames? Not everyone wants black polycoat and black rubber grips. Giving customers these options would go a long way to improving sales. I say this as a guy that works at a gunshop with a large selection of handguns... and we would sell a lot more CZ pistols if they didn't all look like something that the military uses. The last thing for these pistols, is that they all need to have decockers. If you offer the DA/SA trigger system, make them like SIG in that they can all be decocked in the same way, regardless of model. The P-01 decocker is cool, but not everyone likes it. Even if I love it.

The 97B is a fantastic handgun. Unfortunately it is perceived as an overly large handgun. The reasons for this are two fold. First, the trigger reach when the hammer is down. It feels like it is just short of a mile. Sure, staging the trigger back by thumb cocking the hammer makes the pull just right... but then there is no decocker again. This is an oversight. If you want this gun to go head to head against a SIG P220, you gotta do it right. It also needs a full length metal guide rod and the other options I mentioned earlier for the P-01. I also want to see a “97 Compact” version that sports a shorter barrel and grip frame. 10MM would also be brilliant as the caliber has a cult following. A compact 97 in 10MM would be astounding. One of my favorite things to do is to sand those wood grips till all the checkering is gone. While I don't like smooth grips, this makes the grips thinner and they feel “just right” in my hands, and in the hands of a lot of other guys.

Your Dan Wesson handguns are nice. But the Alaskan Guide looks hideous. The turn off is the abbreviated sight radius thanks to those ridiculous porting vents. Lose the vents, lengthen the sight radius and keep the barrel at 4 inches. If you still want the gun ported, allow that as an option but drill the ports in at 10 and 2 instead of across the top. You can still make them effective without making it look like Buck Roger's revolver. I like the cartridge choice there.

The Commander Bobtail is going to be my next 1911 type automatic. Hopefully it will be a Christmas Present to myself. I'll get it in .45 but I could easily be tempted to get it in 10MM. I've handled one before, at SHOT '06 and again just a month ago... clean lines, brilliant simplicity... it is one of my favorite 1911's out there. But it needs something. The checkering is too course. The LPI should be around 25 instead of, what is it, 8? Now, in 10MM, a solid stainless frame is ideal... but .45 doesn't need it. Couldn't you get a lighter alloy frame for it? Everyone else makes a lightweight frame... you could buy them off the rack from S&W if you had to. I don't care how – just get it. A lightweight Commander with those clean lines you have? I would so buy that. I'd buy buy 2 of them... I'd have to because Mrs. Ogre would want one something fierce. I would also want mine to have simple rubber grips just like what Kimber offers on their basic Custom II pistols. The wood grips you have are nice... but for a 10MM or a lightweight Commander, I want more grip in my grips. And less worry about keeping oil and sweat off them if I'm going to be packing that thing every day. Just like what I will do when I buy it. I might just buy some rubber grips from Kimber, and cut the corners off them. But I would rather buy them already on the gun – especially if they had a little medallion in the grips with the CZUSA logo. Stainless medallions that match the gun, not gold or brass like Colt... That would be slick. Come on CZ – this would be so easy for you guys to do... you own Dan Wesson – just tell them to do it. Done.

Your 452 Lux rifle is awesome. For a .22 bolt action, it's my favorite. But I want it in stainless and synthetic. You offer the “Style” version of the 452, but it doesn't have the same stock profile or the adjustable sights of the Lux. This is why I've not purchased one of them. If it's not stainless, I can live with the nickel, but you don't offer the nickel on the version of the rifle that I want. I also want that rifle with the 453 trigger system. What's the point of putting the best sights on the rifle without your best trigger? If one wants a rifle without sights, you have the 452 Style, but why not a 453 Style? Again, the better trigger would be a blessing.

The 527 series of rifles is one that has a lot of gaps where there need be none. I just ordered a 527 Carbine in 7.62X39MM. What I would rather have had was the same caliber, but with the 527 Lux stock and barrel length. I'm a fan of the 527 FS rifle as well, but you don't have the 7.62 caliber option there. I would have been very tempted if it was. You give the 527 Carbine great wood for the stock, but the lines of it make it look like a short fat little sister to the rest of the line. Then there is the 527 Prestige... very nice... but it is only in .22 Hornet? In the last two years do you know how many rifles I've sold in .22 Hornet? None. The ammo is 45 bucks box now, fading popularity, and there is little reason to offer this caliber at all. .223 Rem, .204 Ruger, and 7.62X39MM. Chambering in Hornet you might as well chamber it in .218 Bee for all its worth these days. Still no stainless or even nickel finished versions of the 527... The one I ordered, the Carbine, is supposed to be a good Brush Gun, well why not make it an All Weather Brush gun? At least make it an option. I really do like the Carbine... but had it offered the LUX stock, and if it had an adjustable rear sight – it would have looked like a Mini Safari rifle and that would have been slick as hell... I'd have ordered that one, even if it was 150 or 200 bucks more.

Now on to the 550 series. The first oversight I see is the lack of .25-06. One of the most popular hunting cartridges in the USA, and you leave it out. Same with 7MM Rem Mag. You don't offer 7MM Rem Mag or .300 Win Mag until you step up into the Medium Magnum... which is nice... I love that rifle. But not everyone likes the iron sights. One guy I work with just hates iron sights on any rifle and thus would never buy one. Where is a rifle in .300 Remington Ultra Mag? Out here where we are, we probably sell more .300 RUM Rifles than any other “Big Caliber” guns. You guys offer kevlar stocks and big calibers and nickel finishes on other guns but you don't put them all together into a rifle that a lot of hunters out here in the Western States would want. Guys out here want a long range, all weather, Elk Cannons. They don't hunt Cape Buffalo out here, or African Lions. They don't need Safari guns. Your close... very close... take the Kevlar or some other synthetic stock, drop in a stainless barrel and action, and leave the sights off it – and you would sell more 550 rifles out here. Or at least, I'd be able to sell them for you. Chamber them in .25-06, .300 Win Mag, 7MM Rem Mag, and .300 RUM.

Your Safari Classics rifles are fantastic... but they use what you call the “American” style stocks while all your other Safari rifles use what you call your LUX style stocks with that nice curve along the top of the stock... Beautiful lines... but not for the famous .505 Gibbs? I don't get that.

I have to say that the rifle you call the Ultimate Hunting Rifle isn't quite there. While it is a work of art and just might be the next rifle I order – and I am serious about that – it is not quite right. Namely because of the caliber. Again, .300 RUM needs to be in the mix as is a .338 caliber. .338 Win or Ultra Mag would put this over the top. Not that there is anything wrong with the .300 Win Mag... Not saying that. It's just that a lot of my customers only see that cartridge as a starting point. I kid you not, the last one of those I sold was to a woman for her Elk hunt.

Short Mags are becoming hugely popular, yet you don't have anything for them. I'd really like to see one of your Medium Safari rifles in .325WSM and the new .375 Ruger caliber. We've has requests for them, but we've had to say “CZ doesn't make those.” And then we sell them a rifle from someone else when we could have sold them a CZ.

Then there is the 750 Sniper... now THAT is a rifle that would benefit from .300 Win Mag. Serious military snipers are moving away from .308... taking options that offer more long range punch than that old medium thirty.

Both the 750 and the UHR are offered with the Nightforce scope. Great scope and that scope works on the 750... but on the UHR? I'm sorry but it looks like crap. Very expensive crap. You have an elegant hunting rifle with nice scroll work in the checkering... and then you top it with a flat black knobby tactical scope? Again, this is one of those things that BMW has, but CZ USA doesn't... a sense of style and grace. I don't care how good that scope is, it looks like shiat. This is the automotive equivalent of taking a new Jaguar and fitting it with a 4 inch lift and BFG Mud Terrain tires. For the UHR, you should get into some talks with Leupold for a VX-7 series 3.5-14X scope with the Boone and Crockett reticle. That would be my first choice of scope for this rifle and when I do order one come spring time, that is the scope I'm putting on mine. The 5.5-22X50 is nice, but sometimes 5.5X is just too much magnification... it isn't an Ultimate scope if you have to make sure your target is far enough away to see it in the scope.

As far as your shotguns go, CZ, I think you have hit the nail on the head with them... or at least with what you have got. You need a few more though. You need a slug gun for hunting in areas that are shotgun only. Eastern States there. You also need a turkey gun because not everyone wants Grouse on Thanksgiving.

I would also be interesting in seeing what you could do with an automatic shotgun. What does the Czech Police use for regular law enforcement use when it comes to shotguns? Probably Benelli? Look at what Saiga has done with the AK... they made AK based shotguns. CZ has an AK type rifle that is tremendous from what I've been told. Why not take that internal action, beefed to 12 gauge, but feed it from a tube magazine like a regular automatic shotgun? Nothing too fancy or complicated, just a mesh between old and new. Development wouldn't be all that difficult and I bet if you put your mind to it, you could have one prototyped in a matter of weeks. Think about that for a bit, wont you... It could be the base for a whole line of new shotguns for police/military and for hunting. It doesn't have to look like an AK on the outside, give it clean lines and good ergonomics, but keep that rugged reliability and blunt force simplicity on the inside... I think you would have a winning combination.

Do a similar thing but in .308, feeding from M1A/M-14 or FAL mags and you could give these SR-25 and AR-10's a run like how Saiga is doing.

CZ has come a long way since when I first looked at them... Everything CZ makes is fantastic. But like I've said – they could be better. If they do these improvements to the product lines... not even improvements – just filling these gaps... then CZ would slingshot up the ranks to the very top.

H.R. 2640: Have you guys heard of this? Chuck Schumer calls this the Veterans Disarmament Act. What it will do is ban you from owning a gun if you have been diagnosed with PTSD or ADHD or even Depression. If you have been diagnosed, you could have your door kicked in and your guns seized. I like how they at least call it what it is... Veterans Disarmament Act. This lets you know exactly what they want to do – which is to take away the arms from those that know how to use them. This is chilling. And it is completely founded on bullshit. I've studied PTSD and specifically Veterans with PTSD a hell of a lot more than Chuck Schumer has and more than probably 95% of practicing psychologists out there. The Hollywood myth of Ex-Soldiers flipping out and slaying people in a PTSD caused hallucination where they think they are slaying phantom enemies is completely unfounded. I've never seen this, never even heard of it in real life... PTSD just doesn't do that. I've never had a Vet tell me that they have gone for a weapon. They might toss and turn in the middle of a nightmare, they might kick or punch against their blanket... but they don't go to the gun safe and open it and pull out a gun.

What really makes Ex-Soldiers flip out are jackasses like Chuck Schumer... but since he is still converting O2 they are obviously and unfortunately not the menace that Schumer is making them out to be.

This is a blanket insult to all those that have served in the Armed Forces and are now serving or are thinking about serving. That some how military veterans are dangerous people, like convicted felons. The Act is not called the “Veterans with PSTD Disarmament Act”.

I want to see on CNN and FOX, some Soldier – a Marine guard or someone from The Old Guard, salute Schumer, and when Chucky pauses to decide what to do, shake hands or salute or whatever spins in that hollow cavity inside his skull... I want to see that soldier kick Schumer square in the balls, then turn his back on him. Right there on camera. Villains like Schumer need to be punished and stopped – evicted from Washington DC public office... they shouldn't even be allowed on a PTA committee. They are destroying our Constitution, they are destroying America, and they are selling us out to the Hippies and the Chinese. I would like to see the old tradition of Riding Out On Rails... Of course it would be hard to carry Schumer, tied to a rail road tie and covered with tar and feathers, through DC traffic. It would be difficult, but I am willing to try. Of course we wouldn't have to carry his screaming ass too far. Just to the Potomac is good enough.

9-29-07:  Ogre has a lot of interests... Firearms, Automotive, New Tech and such... you guys know this. You might have also picked up the hint that The Ogre also likes good food. Food, to me, is more than just nourishment. It can be anywhere from a snack to spiritual awakening. So of course, I take restaurants very seriously. As much as I love a good gun shop, a well tuned V-8, a new scope... I relish a good eatery. I got to tell you – a good restaurant is one of my favorite places to be. All my friends know – this is just the Law of Ogre – after I go shooting, I must go to a good food joint.

But I have a major problem out here in my little corner of nowhere.

There is no good place to eat out here. None. I mean, come on... the best we have out here is Wendy's. No, I'm not kidding. Wendy's is the top place out here. This is so sad I could cry, and sometimes I do. Getting lunch out here is a joke. Check this out. McDonald's has been torn down so they can rebuild a new facility to serve the same crap... Burger King is closed so they can remodel their place to serve the same crap. Those were the two main food services here, and now that they are shut down – every other place we have here is PACKED. You have an hour for lunch? Good luck getting a burger before you are late getting back. Seriously sucks out here. Most of the time the situation is so dire that I don't even want to eat any place out here.

The need for a good food joint out here is pressing. If you want to make a MINT selling sandwiches – come to Vernal, Utah. You will have a LINE at your door from day one. Carl's Jr, Sonic, Del Taco, any one of those places will do very well. If you just want to open a sandwich shop and just serve sammiches and maybe a soup of the day... throw in a soda fountain... Gold. Pure gold. You could print your own money with sandwiches. Why? Because people out here are hungry. And if you make some good food – you will never want for customers... because we have no good food here.

Sure, we have a couple places that try. They wish they were good... but they are not. We have “Stockman's” which is a sad little wannabe steakhouse in the basement of a shabby hotel. They charge enough to serve good food, but they don't know what that is. I've never had an order right there. Ever. I've got a gift card for that place, still has about 25 bucks left on it. I've had that card for about a year and half and just have not had the reason to use it. The food is pathetic there. Some guys like it... guys who have never had anything better... guys who have lived here in Vernal for their whole lives and have never left... sure, they love it there. Me? I've had good food, I know what it is – and I miss it.

I'm going to be going out to SLC in a week or two... no specific reason for going. Just to visit a few folks, and to get something decent to eat.

I'd love to see the Travel Channel guys hit the Uintah Basin for a travel show. Anthony Bourdain's No Reservations or Andrew Zimmerman's Bizarre Foods. Each one of those guys would come to Vernal... Andrew would go to Stockman's and find plenty to eat there, much of it disgusting. Tony would ride a horse, eat something grilled out of a fire. It would be depressing, because even these guys that can find good food to eat in the deserts of central mexico wouldn't be able to find a decent meal here that wasn't advertised at the drive up lane – or something different that couldn't be found in any national franchise. Both guys would say “Fuck this place, let's go to Denver.” And that would be it. Not even half a show. And much of it would end up on the cutting room floor. The Travel Channel need not come here. Samantha Brown's Passport to Vernal would be interesting. She'd walk around the desert wearing a big hat and grin and then after 20 minutes she would pout and say that she's going home, giving up travel forever.

The only thing to do out here in Vernal is going Four Wheeling and killing shit. That's the technical phrase for the activity. Killing shit. Different seasons for different shit to kill, but it's still killing shit. Considering the meal I've just partially consumed here at Arby's... I think the shit that got killed are the lucky ones. These Southwest Egg Rolls make me envy the dead. It's like someone ate and taco bell, vomited into egg roll pastry and rolled it up and fried it.

It's probably a good thing there is no really good restaurant out here. If you have ever seen Once Upon A Time In Mexico, you will understand why. Because some good chef will come to Vernal, cook up an actual honest to Buddha decent meal, and someone here will decide that they have to balance him out and cap his ass for not ruining good ingredients. We can't have that here. I think it's a state statute or some local ordinance about it. Some guy will finish his dinner, walk into the kitchen, and shoot the cook.

The only upside to me living out here... is that I love four wheeling and killing shit. So I guess this place remains home. Even if I can't find a decent lunch.

Bad Guys: Two prisoners escaped custody from Daggett County, just north of here by about an hour. They were seen heading this way. A lot of folks are really shook up about this. The local radio guy, a guy who has been known in the past to be a liberal... has just purchased a .357 Mag snubby. Good for him. There is a bounty on these guys... if you catch them, you get 10 grand a head. Thats nice, but if they really wanted these guys caught. Make it 50K each, DOA, with immunity from prosecution. These guys would be laying in the back of a pickup within an hour. The upshot to that is that if this was the SOP for escapees – we wouldn't have escapees. Prisoners would be following the deputy like a line of baby ducks. Wouldn't need cuffs or chains or even jails. Now don't think I'm being too harsh about these escaped convicts. One is a rapist and murderer. He deserves to be shot on sight. The guys should not even have been in Daggett County. They should have been at the state pen in Draper. A joint with much better security than a county jail. A lot of places farm out prisoner housing to smaller locations with less population because of over crowding. I think this is usually fine... but dangerous prisoners should not be farmed out. Prisoners like guys convicted of tax evasion or smoking a joint... prisons are full of them. And dangerous animals like these two escapees are farmed out. And Career DUI'ers get off scott free too... Justice isn't really justice any more. Remember, I believe in the system... just not the people in it. American justice can be the best in the world, but it is corrupt and stupid and this is a dangerous combination. Especially when the results are two slime bags getting away, on the run, and a danger to everyone in the Uintah Basin. They had best not come my way... I've got 5 sons and a pregnant wife. I will defend them by ending the threat. A loaded .45 and 12 gauge is at hand as they always are. Oh, and a rifle, of course. I think more minor sentences need to be dealt with using alternative means. And dangerous ones need more intense treatment.

Emails: I do read all my emails. Unfortunately I am not able to respond to them.... I download them and read them when I can. But since I get very little connection time, responses are not always possible. Where I live, we don't have a broadband connection and we don't have a land line for a dial up.

I've posted years and years ago my strong distrust of China. Now we see my fears and misgivings have been amply justified. China has been carrying out a cyberwar campaign against the West. US and European networks have been under constant siege. These attacks are serious... mainly because we don't know the true extent of the damages. What attacks have been simply to create back doors into critical or sensitive systems... what attacks have stolen critical intel. We just don't know. This is just one aspect of China's subtle warfare against us. More aggressively is that poisonings they are attempting. Lead based paints on toys, tainted food products. Not a lot of damage, but damaging none the less. Don't think this is just poor manufacturing or bored hackers. How many other aspects of their quite war have we seen? What about the ThinkPad fiasco? IBM used to make ThinkPad laptops. The sold the manufacturing to Lenovo, a Chinese firm. Many government agencies buy IBM ThinkPads, and in the transition, this meant that soon we had US Government agencies buying Chinese laptops. I knew what was coming and it didn't take long. Some of these Chinese computers had built in spies. Keyl loggers, memory dumps that phoned home. Next thing you know, ThinkPads were not allowed in certain .gov offices. How many more aspects are out there? Think about it. This quite war is not random. This has purpose. There is structure to it. There is a goal. Its an easy one to see if you are only willing to look at it. At the core of it, China as a whole has to be considered an enemy state.

I'm going to post something here that I want everyone to read carefully. One of The Horde has spent a lot of time in China as a teacher. His observations are interesting and important for us to understand:

The following is a series of impressions and thoughts written right before and after I left China. I did not feel comfortable keeping a diary of these thoughts while I had much time left in the country. No significant attempt has been made to make the ideas logically flow and while I have tried to write it well, it is not well written. I did not have a particular audience in mind when I wrote this. I just wanted to get down my impressions so I could share them with others. I don't know what I will think in the future but what follows is a pretty good representation of what I thought in July of 2007. It is not exhaustive (I figured five pages was long enough) but it is reasonably complete.


China is not our friend nor are its people. Individual citizens of China may love individual citizens from the US but they will not be friends of the US until their government tells them that the US is the friend of China and the friend of China's people. I have never heard anything genuinely positive about the US from anyone, anywhere in my whole time here. Additionally they are being unfriendly as evidenced by the discovery of Chinese weapons in Afghanistan.


The lack of critical thinking skills amongst the university students is striking.


Isn't it interesting that everyone is mad at Starbucks for being in the forbidden city and nobody is talking about the managers of the Forbidden city who were the ones who allowed and may have even asked (I'm not sure) them to be there. This is a small example of the prevalent idea of the west imposing or bullying China or the east.


There is this mania for never coming to a conclusion which dictates action. “Both sides have good points. This is a complex issue and we will need to continue talking about it.”


It feels to me like there has been a long and concerted effort to improve the world's view of China. Factual errors like the great wall being the only man-made structure that can be seen un-aided from outer space. The sudden influx of Chinese movies. I am hearing a lot about China in pod-casts for everything from news programs to cooking shows. I am always hearing positive things or almost always. Occasionally I hear about exploited workers and the fiasco of the Three Gorges Dam but I never hear about the brutally suppressed farmers who are starving and disenfranchised. I hear polite references to the PRC government's denial and revision of the Tiananmen Square Massacre. It feels to me like there is almost some sort of psy-ops against the American people (and perhaps the world) so that they will not so readily support military conflict with mainland China.


The PRC is building it's Army. Why? Attributing motivations to actions is fraught with peril, even when it is your actions, but I think I can put forward some reasonable possibilities. In fact I would go so far as to say that they are likelihoods.

To begin with a sane person does not acquire something without intending to use it. Therefore I will treat the PRC's intent to use the military as a certainty. This begs the question of what this use will be. Two possibilities immediately present themselves. The first use is the suppression of uprisings, particularly from the farmers and peasants. The second use is imperial expansion. I know that in current times imperial expansion sounds antiquated but I will substantiate this.

The suppression of uprisings is clearly an intended use for the military. There are reports of using the military to put down revolts of farmers in recent years. We are well aware of the Tiananmen Square Massacre. It is reasonable to believe that the military will continue to be used for this purpose in the future. However, this does not account for the military buildup. I am not educated in these matters but it seems to me all you need to suppress uprisings of peasants is infantry.

From my understanding of Chinese history I see thousands of years of imperialism. I don't mean dynasties and monarchies. I mean that each dynasty went out and conquered as much territory as it could. The present government is no different. With the possible exception of the Qing dynasty (the most recent), the current boundaries of mainland China bear little resemblance to any of the previous dynasties and its claimed boundaries are that much more different.

However, just the habit of imperialism does not mean that imperial expansion is going to happen. There needs to be land available to take. Without doing any research beyond listening to the news and looking at a map I am aware of several different areas available for armed conflict*. Aksai Chin at the north of India is claimed by India but controlled by the PRC. Most of India's state Arunchai Pradesh is claimed by the PRC. The Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands are administered by Japan but claimed by the PRC. Finally Taiwan and its associated Islands are controlled by the ROC but claimed by the PRC. I watched the president of the PRC speak about Taiwan and heard the translation of his comments while in China. Words like “rogue” and “renegade” were used. The PRC wants the ROC.

A couple of my more “liberal” friends have said that military actions on a large scale are a thing of the past because it would mean one country invading a part of its own economy. They say that it will not be a military takeover (i.e. Taiwan) but a willing coalition from the business men. I hear what they are saying and I think that there is some truth in these statements. However, I see a flaw in that thinking. Those statements are built on the idea that things change, but things don't change. It has been powerful people with armies since the beginning and it will continue to be so. To add to this, The PRC president's language was clearly military minded and mentioned nothing of a proposed business alliance and can only be described as barely stopping short of threatening (or not stopping short).


I do not know what the PRC's grand strategy is but I guarantee they have one and that we have seen the preliminary steps being implemented. I cannot say exactly why I thought this but my gut seemed to think, after spending 11 months there and listening to the people and watching what was going on, that the ultimate goal of the PRC is world domination and I don't think it cares in what way, military, economic it doesn't care. I am aware that this sounds a little kooky and I am not going to defend it. That was my sense of things, do what you will with it.

There is no question though that the PRC's ambition is to be a super power. I'm not sure how one would define a “super power” but what ever it is Mainland China wants to be one. I believe that they will do ANYTHING to accomplish this.


In China, right and wrong, and good and evil are far from absolutes except as it pertains to family. It is my sense after listening to my students speak (and has been confirmed after talking with other foreign teachers) that if something is good for the family you do it and if it is bad for the family you stop and this is without reference to the well being of anyone who is not your friend or your family. I do not believe that the government of mainland China cares about the wellbeing of anyone else at all. This is supported by its cruel treatment of its own people.


China's weakness is energy, in particular oil. But if you can put a kink in the energy supply line you can significantly interfere with almost every part of China.


I had a great experience in China. I would heartily recommend anyone who can walk two or three miles at a time to go there. We met some wonderful people, both Chinese and ex-pats. With everything that I know now I would do it all over again in a heartbeat. It is a different culture and as you begin to understand parts of it you begin to see your own beliefs and culture from a new perspective. You find that things you thought were givens and reasonable certainties are actually wildly ranging variables.

That being said. . .don't believe the hype. China is not a land of wonder and mystery. It is a land of pollution and ignorance. It is a land where most of the people don't know that plastic bags are not biodegradable and so dump their garbage in ditches by the road and railroad tracks, and in waterways. It is a place were nearly all of the trains' toilettes dump their waste directly on the railroad tracks (you are not allowed to use the bathroom while the train is stopped at a station). The people do not know about germ theory. I have a friend who works at a cheese factory there. They are having a very hard time getting the workers to wash their hands at all and to get them to do it well and every time after using the bathroom is almost impossible.

It is a land where the national hero killed MILLIONS of it's own people yet his portrait is hung from Tiananmen and his mausoleum is located in Tiananmen square. It is a country that censors the Internet. It is a country that distorts it's facts. It is my understanding that government agencies routinely inflate or deflate figures and statistics to make them more favorable. (As a result if the figure passes though many different agencies it is often inflated or deflated beyond any semblance of reality.) This is a country that is built on lies.

They are a people without dignity or a sense of fair play. Just observe any bottleneck. Buses are great examples. Everyone mobs the door. They push and shove. There is no dignity. This was driven home when I was in Xian on a bus coming back from the terracotta warriors. The whole bus wanted to get off but we couldn't at first because of the mob pressing up against the door. When we finally got off, and had pressed our way through the crowd, I looked back and saw people pushing and shoving and, since you would buy your ticket after the bus was under way, people were climbing in through the windows. It is not about right and wrong, it is about what you can and cannot do.


As a general principle we need to not do business with immoral and corrupt governments. There are obvious moral reasons for this. However, there is a purely practical aspect and this practical side is extremely significant with China. If you support the immoral government, do business with them, establish a relationship with them. You keep them in power and give them no reason to change. Then there will come a point (or even many situations) where the corrupt government will, for lack of a better expression, be corrupt to you.

We are engaging in trade relations with a government that essentially denies the Tiananmen Square “Incident.” We are engaging in trade relations with a government that is afraid to give the public uncensored news. A government that regularly puts down revolts using the military. A government that is supporting the government of Sudan and thereby NOT helping to end the genocide in Darfur. A government that is selling weapons with full knowledge that these weapons will be used against us in Iraq and Afghanistan. This government is not our friend. Its people are not our friend.


I wish I could explain it better but I didn't have this clear realization until I had been in country for several months. There is this constant “buzz” of propaganda. A few big things, like constant hashing and rehashing of Japan's invasion and occupation. Continual coverage of “The Rape of Nanking” and so on. However, it is this constant. . .pressure. It is almost like background radiation. No clear incident but this ubiquitous force of over-statements, under-statements, lies, ethnocentrism, nationalism and so forth. At first I attributed this to a natural and reasonable pride in their country which does have a great history. However, I began to realize that it was something more.

There is nothing wrong with China! It is perfect! Everything that is wrong with it is being addressed in the best way possible! (yes the sentences contradict) However, everything that is wrong or could be wrong with other countries, the US in particular, amounts to their sum total.


I realized while I was there that I could not classify the government or its economy. So I decided to ask my classes. They said it was socialist. Since I couldn't see a single socialist thing about mainland China I asked them how it could be socialist when there was nothing socialist about it. This was about halfway into the second term so my students knew me and knew that I wasn't attacking them or the country and really wanted to know. One class in particular got rather excited and eloquent. (The following are not true quotes but they are close. I should have written then down at the time.) “No, China is not socialist now but it will be. This is just a step towards a wonderful dream. Maybe you don't believe in this dream but we do. No one will have to work if they don't want to. Everyone will get paid for what they do. Everyone will work for himself.” I think they also said something about everyone being equal (which obviously implies that people currently, in China, are not). I asked them how you could not need to work when you don't want to, get paid for what you do, AND work for yourself. They were so enamored with the “beauty” of their “dream” that I got no real answers. What was striking was the unity in the class on this idea. Sometimes I got the feeling that students were saying what they knew they were supposed to say. This was not the case with their “beautiful dream.” Their enthusiasm was clearly genuine.

This reminds be of another interesting thing. In the textbooks for Intro to the US and Intro to the UK classes. When the cold war came up it was never Democracy vs Communism, it was Capitalism vs Socialism. I thought that was an interesting distinction to make considering that the UK was socialist for some time and that much of Europe was/is based on some degree or flavor of socialism. I also discovered that they do not view the PRC or the USSR as communist but as socialist.

I had a class where I would bring in contemporary articles in English and we would read them. Not wanting to stir up feelings I was careful to not select articles that were at odds with the Chinese government's policies. North Korea had just detonated a nuclear device. This was a historic situation. Not because there was now possibly a new nuclear power but because the PRC and Japan were on the same side working together. I brought in an article that discussed the situation and how the East Asian countries were working together. I broke them up into groups and told them to give me a summary and write about there opinions of the article's contents. Every single group returned papers discussing the unfair treatment of North Korea by the west and how the US needed to stop bullying North Korea and said nothing about the cooperation between the PRC and Japan. I found these results particularly interesting in light of the fact that the only reference to the west and the US was that it was a US government agency that had confirmed it was a nuclear device and not a conventional one.


The people seem to be carefully taught all the negatives and problems


With few exceptions, perhaps 5%, no one in China can think. They are carefully trained, very effective recording and play back devices. Students are regularly incapable of admitting that there is another point of view much less conceding it has any points worth considering. A fact all the more disturbing when you consider that these are the educated people who will be running the government in the future.

I had a class where I showed movies. It was up to me to select and purchase the movies. I showed the movie “Spy Game” with Robert Redford and Brad Pitt. I selected it because it had a lot of dialogue. It had completely slipped my mind that the PRC was an antagonist in the movie. While most of the movie takes place in other parts of the world the beginning and end take place in China. When the movie was over I asked them how they liked it. You could feel that they were not entirely happy. I said, “Did you like it?”


They said, “No.”


I said, “Why not?” expecting them to say that they thought China was shown in a bad light or something like that.


A student said, “They break our laws!”


I was surprised at that reason.


“This is a movie about spies! That is what spies do! They break other countries laws. Do you not think there are Chinese spies in America right now trying to steal American secrets?”


This seemed to unsettle them a bit. There was a pause and the student who spoke before said somewhat hesitantly, “We don't know.”


My initial interpretation of this response was that they were afraid that by admitting to the existence of Chinese spies in America, they would be divulging state secrets. Upon reflection I found that there may be another explanation. The students, or at least that student, felt that to acknowledge the existence of Chines spies would somehow make them loose face. Clearly to acknowledge their existence would diminish the absolute evil of spies breaking Chinese laws. That said I am not entirely confident the students were capable of this level of reasoning.


I was also surprised that the response about the movie was based on the breaking of Chinese laws when the rest of the movie was rather damning of the US intelligence service. However, their language skills may not have permitted them to follow the movie very well. Additionally, there may have been other cultural factors I am not aware of influencing or directing those responses.


I said, “Of course there are spies in the US! At least there had better be! Your government would not be doing its duty if there weren't.” This statement appeared to be a new way of thinking to them.


I was not able to get them to continue talking about this.


In my Introduction to the United States class I had a policy of requiring all the students to write questions (about anything) on slips of paper and giving them to me at the beginning of class. One day I had a slip of paper with the question, “Why does the west say that people were killed in Tiananmen square when all witnesses and historical documents prove that it was resolved peacefully?”


Feeling deportation was at hand but not wanting to lie (I had decided that I would do my best to always speak the truth) I spoke to the dynamic. The one thing that I soon started trying to teach was how to think. I said, “In a situation like this, where there are two such different accounts, one person is lieing and you need to decide which one to believe.”


I have been reading T.E. Lawrence's Seven Pillars of Wisdom. I think that China, its people, and its culture are just as different from the west as the Arabs he describes. The difference is that Lawrence's Arabs are riding around on camels and set on staying the way they are, whereas the Chinese are furiously emulating the West. As I trying to get more specific about this I see a lifetime of research and writing on this topic opening up before me so I will leave it there.


I could just keep going on. I didn't know what I wanted to say exactly when I started this and I didn't know who would be reading it. It is a mess but it is a reasonable collection of thoughts and impressions from 11 contiguous months and 15 months total.




  • To add weight to the point I have included an excerpt from the world fact book on China based on principles drafted in 2005, China and India continue discussions to resolve all aspects of their extensive boundary and territorial disputes together with a security and foreign policy dialogue to consolidate discussions related to the boundary, regional nuclear proliferation, and other matters; recent talks and confidence-building measures have begun to defuse tensions over Kashmir, site of the world's largest and most militarized territorial dispute with portions under the de facto administration of China (Aksai Chin), India (Jammu and Kashmir), and Pakistan (Azad Kashmir and Northern Areas); India does not recognize Pakistan's ceding historic Kashmir lands to China in 1964; lacking any treaty describing the boundary, Bhutan and China continue negotiations to establish a boundary alignment to resolve substantial cartographic discrepancies, the largest of which lies in Bhutan's northwest; China asserts sovereignty over the Spratly Islands together with Malaysia, Philippines, Taiwan, Vietnam, and possibly Brunei; the 2002 "Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea" eased tensions in the Spratly's but is not the legally binding "code of conduct" sought by some parties; Vietnam and China continue to expand construction of facilities in the Spratly's and in March 2005, the national oil companies of China, the Philippines, and Vietnam signed a joint accord on marine seismic activities in the Spratly Islands; China occupies some of the Paracel Islands also claimed by Vietnam and Taiwan; China and Taiwan continue to reject both Japan's claims to the uninhabited islands of Senkaku-shoto (Diaoyu Tai) and Japan's unilaterally declared equidistance line in the East China Sea, the site of intensive hydrocarbon prospecting; certain islands in the Yalu and Tumen rivers are in dispute with North Korea; China seeks to stem illegal migration of North Koreans; China and Russia have demarcated the once disputed islands at the Amur and Ussuri confluence and in the Argun River in accordance with their 2004 Agreement; in 2006, China and Tajikistan pledged to commence demarcation of the revised boundary agreed to in the delimitation of 2002; demarcation of the China-Vietnam land boundary proceeds slowly and although the maritime boundary delimitation and fisheries agreements were ratified in June 2004, implementation remains stalled; in 2004, international environmentalist and political pressure from Burma and Thailand prompted China to halt construction of 13 dams on the Salween River.”

9-27-07:  Yesterday was murder... I'll set up 5 to 10 scopes a day. I think my record was 18 in a day. I've come to know all the problems and solutions with a scope... the ins and outs and little secrets about any given make or model of scope. I've come to learn more about rifle optics than I ever thought I could know. Never have any problems with it. Until today. First problem was that I mounted a new scope on a rifle that had a scope on it. Dude said that it wasn't shooting. After futzing with it, with the new scope in the old rings, then with new rings... turns out it was the screw holes tapped into the receiver done at the factory... they were not aligned. The result was that the Zeiss scope – which do not have much adjustment in them... couldn't get it to come over to the bore. Solution was to ditch the Weaver bases and throw on Burris dovetail front and adjustable rear set. Then you can just align the scope for windage at the rear base. Done. But the real Bugbear was the second problem. Busted bits and screw heads with a carbide tip busted off inside the torque screw. Drilling out carbide doesn't work. The ring around the carbide had to be savaged so severely that the ring just let go. Took an hour. I'm not exactly happy about that, only happy that the scope wasn't thrashed in the process. Such a stupid thing... a tiny bit of steel... totally buggered the whole works. And don't say that there is an easy answer like an “easy out” bit to back out a stripped screw... because the carbide tip bit prevented that from biting and we couldn't get the bit of carbide out of there. Gravity was no help. NOTHING worked. This was hell. The only saving grace was that the owner of the rifle wasn't there. Arrgh.

That Zeiss scope a Conquest 4-12... for the money, that's some danged good glass. The Conquest series is hard to beat. It's right there with the Leupold VX-III series, less than a VX-L. Some of the clearest, brightest glass on the market. But you have hardly any adjustment inside. The only way to do these are with the windage adjustable bases. Not the windage adjustable rings – I hate those freaking things. I just don't trust them. No way I'd ever have them on one of my guns. Anyways, I like the Zeiss, but it isn't my favorite do to the lack of adjustment. Some guys might say that if you mount it right, you don't need all that adjustment... but yeah, you do. If you are doing some long range shooting you have to account for the wind and the range – you can't have all your adjustment used up for just the bore sight. What if you have a 15 MPH cross wind? What if your target is 1000 yards? Now if you want all the adjustment... look at a Shepperd. Those things can adjust all the way around you. They are crazy. But the color and sharpness isn't quite there... and recoil management isn't there either. You don't want to mount one on your .300 or bigger. Just aint going to stand up. Now say you want a scope that is going to handle big recoil, have the clarity and brightness, and have the adjustment? Man, I tell you, it's all about the Leupold VX-7. The money for them is ludicrous. Seriously, you could get a BNIB SIG 556 Carbine for the price of a 3.5-14 B&C VX-7. But I think it is the best scope on the market. There are others out there that demand higher prices – but I for a field gun... for a working rifle... for a practical gun... nothing is better. Nothing. Looking through the Zeiss, VX-III and VX-L, Swarovski's, and some others... The VX-7 is just flat out the best scope out there that I've ever seen. If you think there is a scope out there better than a VX-7 – send it to me and I'll test it. Put it through an evaluation and we shall see. I dare you. But be prepared to have your preconceived notions shattered.

That being said, there are a couple scopes out there that I really want to check out. Kahles and Vortex. I've not seen a new Kahles in years and years so I don't know what their new scopes are about. Vortex is still new to the game, and I've not seen one yet. I'd really like to. Note to Vortex – I would love to test one of your Viper rifle scopes. Hook me up!

Simons, Tasco, Bushnell, Burris... Life is too short. Bushnell and Burris used to be good – but they are now made in China. Products from China do not qualify... and even if they were still made in the US or in an allied US country – that would be one thing. But they just suck. Small details that keep those scopes – even their best examples – from being right.

Nikon has really let me down with there Monarch series. The old Monarchs made in Japan are awesome. But the new ones.. the latest in the Monarch series are just not nearly as good. Made in Japan? Nope. Philippines. These things have parallax like crazy. I've seen better from BSA!

RSS Feeding: Hordeman Eagle is an RSS Feed kind of guy and found us an easy solution to get via RSS Feed. Nice. Click here. I'll add it to the menu over there in the upper left. Thanks Eagle.

9-26-07:  Would you shoot Hitler? If you could go back in time to before Hitler took too much power... would you kill Hitler? The answer to that for a great many guys I know is “hell yes.” Okay, now we have the President of Iran here in the US, on US soil... and moronic, slack brained Liberals are cheering this guy. Do you guys know how Amadinajad took power? He gained prominence as a torturer. He took power through torture. This psycho is the Hitler of Iran. I'm not the guy that has called him that... people from Iran has called him that. And don't think for a moment that this guy wouldn't kill you and everyone you love if he could. He calls our nation “The Great Satan” and believes that the Holocaust was a fabrication. When asked about the Holocaust at that school of lower learning in New York, this A-hole's answer was a smoke screen that talked about Scientific research and Palestinians... I listened to the interpreter and tried to follow what he was saying – but it quite literally made no sense whatsoever on any level. This guy is pure evil unadulterated. If there is one guy that can make claim to the title of “The Antichrist” it's this guy. Well, him or Harry Reid. I can't decide which. Back to The Mad Iranian... What I don't get is why in the hell are these Liberal students bowing down to him? This guy would enslave all the women here, and imprison, torture, and eventually kill all the men. All homosexuals would be put to death. Women would be repressed with all rights removed... they don't even treat women like fellow human beings. He believes that his use of nukes will bring about some religious miracle. He believes that his using nukes on Israel will make the sky bluer and his 72 virgins hotter. The man is a total hate filled maniac. So explain this to me... all you left leaning Readers out there... Why are Liberals fond of him? It makes no sense to me... this is why I have a firm belief that Liberals are complete idiots. So what does this have to do with Hitler? I know that because this jackhole is a visiting dignitary, that we as a nation have a responsibility to protect him and that he makes it home unharmed. But there there is The Hitler Question. I find it a shame that this guy will indeed make it home alive and unharmed. Let's just say that he is fortunate he is not visiting a college in Utah... because he would find himself “answered” and I don't think I would feel a bit bad about it. I took an oath to defend this nation from all enemies... and it pisses me slam the fuck off that so many people can not see this man for who and what he is – the enemy. Plain and simple.
I'm not the only one that is unimpressed with some of the moves that Remington has been doing lately. Quality has been slipping. Customer care has dropped off the board. And while they have some cool stuff out, like their new anti-corrosion coating... look at the stocks they are using. They scream CHEAP! They really need to step up. I mean, come on... STEVENS has a better stock on them. I'm saying this not out of disloyalty... I LIKE Remington. I LOVE my 7MM 700. But I don't think I could buy another one. For the same money, I'd probably buy a Browning, and I don't even like Browning rifles! More likely, I'd just save up some bucks and buy a Kimber.

Speaking of Kimber Rifles: Why doesn't Kimber make a synthetic version of the 8400 Classic? I would really like an 8400 Stainless. The Montana rocks, but I want a floor plate on my hunting gun. Makes unloading the gun so much easier... if I can talk about my wants, I'm going to go all the way there. I want a Stainless 8400... simple as that. Just like a regular 8400 Classic, but in stainless and with a synthetic stock. Doesn't have to be Kevlar. Okay? Cool. Now build a whole line of these in all the popular calibers because I can't decide on just one right now. Thanks, Kimber... you are a peach.

Flight of the Phoenix: The latest version of Detonics has flamed out again. I am told that Jerry Ahern had been given the boot and that shortly there after the company totally went under yet again. While some folks have had personality issues with Jerry, I'll be honest... I liked him. And I was happy to see him pick Detonics up out of the ashes. It's too bad that the company failed again... but I can see why. First off, the bread and butter gun was Combat Master. They didn't quite make it just like the older Combat Masters were. The artistic scalloping to the ejection port wasn't there, instead it has a beveled relief cut. Some of the edges were sharp and unforgiving when they should have been rounded and softened. My first review of the new Combat Master was positive, but after living with it for an unintentional extended period... I've grown less tolerant of the character flaws. For one, the gun is made of cast parts, cast frame, cast slide... I don't care how tough casting can be, for a 1200 dollar gun the damn thing should be milled from forged billets blessed by the Gods. It should have night sights. The only real competitors are the couple small STI's out there and the Kimber Ultra CDP... The Kimber Ultra CDP kicks the Detonics' trash on multiple levels for the same amount of scratch. Looking at the two side by side, I can't see why anyone would opt for the Combat Master. Then there is the weight issue. The Combat Master is freaking heavy. For a Concealed Carry Gun, it needs to be smoother, softer, and lighter. Not heavy, coarse, and unrefined... you don't want to put this down your pants. You would rather have a Rosie O'Donald going down your pants, or a Kate Beckensale? You decide. The last thing about the Detonics that needed to be addressed, the trademarked chopped rear portion of the slide. This is an outdated styling feature that does give the gun some character, but ends up reducing the effectiveness for no useful purpose. If The Ogre was to buy Detonics and put it into operation, I would do it easily... I'd farm out to Smith & Wesson for the frames and slides. They would all be light weight Officer sized frames, not specially shortened so they require special mags because they are just too damn short frames. I'd put night sights on, and leave the profile alone. Everyone wants Novak style rear sights – I'd give them Novak style rear sights with tritium inserts. To give the gun a “Detonics” kind of look, I'd leave out the characteristic 1911 style muzzle end milling and make it with a full length dust cover. Some versions would have a rail that would accept the Springfield XML light. Only then would I have the balls to call my little 1911 mutant a “Combat Master”. Next size up would be a straight up Officer's model, then a Commander sized pistol, and then the regular 5” Government Model. Stainless slides on top of light weight alloy frames, full melt jobs and all ready to roll with widened mag wells and good safety levers. Why would I want to make my 1911's like this? Because these are the 1911's that are selling. 1911's with features like these are what the market wants – and if you are not making 1911's that has these – then you are not going to be selling many guns. If you are not selling them, then you are going to crash and burn like Detonics has been doing. If they are going to try to make another come back – then they are going to have to do it right. Sure the 1911 market is a crowded one, but there is room at the table if you are doing it right. Grasping on to 1970's/80's nostalgia only works so far, and then again, it could only be a fad at best. The original company had vision and made some great innovations... the company was truly ahead of its time... but the later incarnations have all been “Remember how cool we used to be?” That act reminds me of the father from Married with Children when he talked about high school football. It really sucks that Detonics had to learn that lesson the hard way. Again. I don't expect this company to rise out of the ashes again... I think this one has closed the chapter on the company for good. I mean, you take Detonics' biggest fan, put him in charge, and then still drive it all into the ground. The problem might not be in the CEO, but in the board. What did the board do to ruin the guy's enthusiasm? What did they not allow him to do? Interesting questions, eh?

We finally got in the SIG 556 rifles! Looking at them side by side with the AR-15... the AR-15 is just a silly rifle now. The 556 Carbine is a combination of all the best features of the best rifles out there. AR style ergos, AK like bolt, Para FAL like gas system... fantastic. And not much more than a regular AR-15.

I meant Craig Boddington, not Boyd Coddington. Duh. I swear, I'm loosing my mind sometimes.

9-24-07:  Spleen Vent: Quick Takes On Current Events that I've not talked about this last week... Things I've been meaning to remark on but never have.

Hillary vs Petraeus – When Hillary said that the General's report required a suspension of disbelief, that pissed me off. The General should have stood up at that point and said “Mrs Carpetbagger, I am a General of the US Army and you are not in my chain of command. I do not need to lie for a living. I am not a politician. You have my report.” Then he should have walked out. Done. A General off our Military should not be batted about like a toy for these political assclowns. The Surge is WORKING, that is all there is too it. Tribal leaders in Iraq are coming on board and the whole country is starting to shape up. Slowly, sure... but it is happening and it wasn't happening before.

The President of Iran in the US? Yeah, I know all about the requirement of allowing these guys to come in to the US because of our hosting of the UN. This is an illustration of why we have to evict the UN from US soil. Let the UN be held in Iceland. Get them out of here.

Speaking of the UN... I read something that flat out scared me. The slack-brained idiots in Washington want to give the Oceans to the UN. The implications of this are not just huge, but it would crush the USA. Our Navy would be put in legal checkmate. These guys are completely stupid. Washington DC needs to wake the hell up and start putting their homeland first and foremost. Each one of these A-holes were elected to represent a part of America and by that extension, America as a whole. As it stands now, the represent nothing. Bush is giving America to Mexico, Congress is giving it to the EU... and yet we keep these clowns in power... we are going to end up in a depressed, fascist controlled, communist dead zone. We have got to vote, we have to get the clowns out and get good people in.

Resident Evil – Extinction: This film was a very special category 4 storm of suck. Mila was packing a pair of Paras and Kukris, shorts, high boots... and airbrushed makeup. She is lovely and moves well but the movie was just flat out stupid. The plot was retarded, the dialog was useless, the action was redundant, half way through the movie I wanted to get up and leave. The big boss man fight at the end was pathetic. Thankfully the movie was short. Unfortunately, it ended about 3 seconds after it just got interesting and about an hour and half after I lost all capacity to care. The commercials advertising the movie are the best parts of it... everything else was nothing you haven't seen yet in any other zombie fest. The best thing in the theater other than the girl that kissed me on the cheek because she liked my pony tail and thought I was a sweet guy. That was nice... she had nice rack and a pretty face. On the movie screen? Well there was a trailer for a new movie coming out, 30 Days of Nights. Now that looks interesting. A mix of Salem's Lot and The Thing. That has all the potential of a fantastic flick.

Rudy at the NRA: Nice try, Rudy... you jack-off. No one in the NRA likes you. We know you are a fake. We all know you are Anti-Gun. You filed a lawsuit against Gun Makers to try to hold them liable for the actions of criminals. Are they going to hold Volkswagen responsible for drivers breaking the speed limit in every GTI they ever sold? For every drunk driver? For every failure to yield or signal? Don't be stupid. And don't even think of voting for Rudy.

Don't Taze Me Bro! The cops involved did the right thing. This student was out of control and got what he needed. The guy was flailing, creating a scene, and disturbing the peace. The police were not going to arrest him, just remove him... he got out of control and failed to comply with the orders of police officers. You act like a wild animal, you get treated as such. You fail to comply, you get tazed. Next time this jackass needs a tazer, I recommend a .40 JHP. I heard Michael Savage say that the cops should be arrested for it. I think Savage needs to calm down and rethink things.

Who has the best Jubblies on G4? Layla Kayle from The Feed, or Olivia Munn from AOTS, or the chick from Cheat? I'm thinking Layla. And why is there not a “Girls of G4 Gone Wild”? Just wondering. I still would rather have The ScreenSavers back, but G4 seems to think that better cleavage makes for better TV. What is this really? Technology you want to use or Technology you want to Snog? Speaking of Jennifer Love Hewitt, Ghost Whisper keeps it jiggly, doesn't it?

Hornady TAP: Hell In A Handbasket noticed that two different sources speak of .223 TAP ammo in different lights. Bane says it is a light penetrator, and another review says that it is a heavy penetrator. Frequent commentator and Hordeman HK Latham of course asks me what my take on this was. As soon as I got this question, I snap fired an email back: “Ah yes... the TAP loads. This is easy. There are 3 different flavors of TAP for .223. The light one breaks open easily and doesn't penetrate deeply. The heavy one is a penetrator, and the middle one is right, well... in the middle.” So HK Latham posts my response on Hell In A Handbasket... evidently Bane of “Shooting Gallery” fame got a little defensive and posts on Hell's page a 3 page response detailing Hornady's marketing... tediously doing in what I said in a single paragraph. And he said it hours after my words were posted. Then he takes credit for setting things straight. WTF? He gets it wrong & or fails to inform... I explain it... and then gets long winded and takes credit. Nice. Not really a big Bane Fan over here. Don't even really like his show on the Outdoor Channel all that, but that's just me. I like G&A TV better. Boyd Coddington is the man. You might not find Boyd the most entertaining, but at least his hands constant moving doesn't distract you from what he's saying and his head doesn't move like a Katherine Hepburn bobble head. Boyd actually gets out there hunts... really using the guns for what they are designed to do. I like that. Actual application. I don't know... maybe I am hard on Mr. Bane. Maybe Bane is a nice guy. Then again, maybe I bumped into him at SHOT and found him to be otherwise when I was talking with a factory rep in a certain booth and he basically pushed me out while I was in the middle of conducting some business. I didn't even know who he was at the time. And then again, maybe Bane's blog needs more font colors. Hornady doesn't sell these TAP bullets for Reloaders. Here is a little tip for you... if you want to make your own light penetrating TAP type rounds, use the Barnes Varmint Grenade bullets. Those suckers explode like crazy and will do tremendous soft tissue damage and has ZERO chance of over penetrating anything made of meat. If you want a better penetrator, you don't need anything all that special. Just don't use a .223.

Correia has made an interesting post about longarms for home defense. What's better, rifles or shotguns. I'll let you go read his post. Now, what I have for this use? Easy. Shotguns. Specifically Remington 870's. Simple, rugged, pump action shotguns. Mine is my beloved Marine Magnum. The other one is an Express in 20 gauge. The wife and boys can handle the 20 so much better than the bigger heavier 12... and there are few men on the planet that can catch a blast from a 20 gauge and just shrug it off. BB Shot gives a good balance of devastation and reduced wall penetration and it has a high pellet count. If you need more punch, a simple rifled slug is easy to throw in and that will give you all you need... even from a 20. I like BlackCloud shells and Remington Buckhammer slugs.

A lot of guys have handguns for that purpose. Correia says they suck, but they are better than nothing. A lot of guys insist on handguns for this purpose. If you do, and if this handgun is not for carry use, just for home defense... then go big. Size is not a concern and it can be as big as you can handle. So at least make it intimidating. Go ahead and get that Beretta or Model 29 if you fancy it... but the PPK for Home Defense? You might want to reconsider that one. Now think about this for a moment – If you know you are going to get into a gunfight, what gun do you want to use? The correct answer is a long gun. If you plan on using a handgun for home defense, then that is what you are planning on to use for a potential gunfight. If a hand gun isn't your first choice, then you need a rifle or a shotgun of some sort. It doesn't have to be an AR or AK type rifle, but your scoped Elk Cannon isn't really going to do it. It has to be easy to use and easy to hit with. This is an area that is ideal for a pistol caliber carbine. Now that you picked out your defense gun – practice with it regularly. Because that is what makes it effective, not the brand or caliber.

Remington kind of irked me off today. While I like Remington rifles a lot, I do recognize their extractors as their weakness... but I've never had a problem with them before. Well, one of our customers purchased a 700 XCR Rocky Mountain Elk foundation rifle in .300 RUM. Very nice rifle. Only problem is that it wont extract round one. Second attempt after getting the case out, same thing. We had to use the bolt out of another 700 in .300 RUM to get the cases out. Examining the bolt we found the extractor to be totally muffed. Bad part from the factory. Simple as that. This cat has a once in a lifetime hunt in 2 weeks, got this gun for it, and Remington wont do a damn thing for him. Wont send out a new bolt, we have to send the whole damn rifle in. I'm not happy about that at all. Remington used to bend a little in cases like this in the past... so the hunter who trusted their brand can still make the hunt. Looks like that isnt the case anymore because they flat out didn't give a damn about the hunter. And we couldn't just swap him bolts because Remington serials their bolts. So you know what we had to do? Trade in the now used rifle at full retail and put the guy into a new rifle. So we send the rifle off for repair and when it comes back, it's still going to be used – so we will have to sell it as used. We are losing about 400 bucks on this deal. And now Remington has lost a customer too. This hunter isn't going to want another Remington. I'm not sure I do either. How much effort would it be to just yank a bolt off the factory floor, drop it into a mailer and send it overnight? Instead they would rather have a hunter miss his Once In A Lifetime Hunt because they are slackers. No, I think my next rifle, (ahem, after this CZ 527 Carbine gets here) is going to be a Kimber.

Remington's new 798 rifles? They are straight up nothing more than Serbian made Mausers. This isn't such a bad thing, but they are rough... very rough. For the money, you could buy a lot of other rifles which are better built, and will most likely be more accurate. I'm not at all impressed with them. If they were about 300 bucks cheaper, then I could see it as a good project rifle. But for the money they are requiring – I'll pass. I'd rather buy (shudder) a Ruger M-77. 

I'll post about the Iranian in New York later - after the red curtain of blood fades enough for me to see what I'm typing...

9-22-07:  There has been a small flap about the NAA Guardian CCM Edition that I reviewed. Now, understand that this NAA Guardian article series was put together a long time ago. I met with NAA at the 2006 SHOT SHOW and we discussed this way back then, made the handshake agreement and then I finally got to writing this article in mid 2007. Things can change in a year and a half... and that is just what happened here. NAA ran into a little snag. The reason for this is that NAA has only been able to produce 5% of the order for any Guardian pistol. Kahr Arms had been the ones to make the frames for the Guardian. NAA is a small shop, and the number of orders have been vast. As such, they have elected to outsource the frames. Kahr dropped the ball so often it was like dribbling at a basketball game. NAA is in the process of switching over to Ruger for the production of the Guardian frame. This is a good move. Ruger is world class when it comes to precision casting. All their guns are cast, and they do casting for lots of other folks. Ruger can do it in the volume that NAA needs. Once NAA gets everything sorted we will be seeing lots of new Guardians out and they will be able to get back to the custom CCM edition. Our best wishes to NAA. Victims of their own success. This is what you call “growing pains”. None of us tried to pull the wool over anyone's eyes. Not I, CCM, or NAA. As you can see, I had the gun that NAA did produce for us. I shot it, I photographed it. Unfortunately I gave it back to NAA. I don't have time to BS about firearms. I've got better things to do. I've got a reputation for being straight up about guns and I'm not going to bend that for anyone. I reviewed the gun that I was sent and at the time I had the understanding that these guns were going to be available. It's not my fault they are not... it's not CCM's fault. Hell, it isn't even NAA's fault. I personally blame Kahr Arms for jacking around with NAA. So here we are... if you want a CCM Edition Guardian, you are going to have to wait, just like me.

One gun I wish NAA would roll into production is a slick new Mini... a top break auto ejecting Mini. A little Schofield... it's cute as hell. Cross your fingers.

Gun Geek makes a good point:It doesn't matter how well the standard Weatherby Vanguard rifles shoot, something inside me just won't let me buy one. When the new sub-MOA rifles first came out, I read a nice article about them. When I read that they test fire all the Vanguards and take the ones that shoot the best and sidetrack them into the sub-MOA production line for some further work, my first thought was "Why would I ever buy one of the standard rifles that has been practically guaranteed to shoot poorly?" Sure, the standard for what constitutes "poor" may be higher than other off the rack guns, but the whole concept of buying a gun that the manufacturer admits doesn't shoot so well just seems wrong. Mathematically, it's a fact that if you remove all the top scores, you lower the average. If Ford started testing all their Taurus's and pulling the ones that ran smoother and quieter off to be made into their new Taurus Gentle Ride model, would you want to buy a standard Taurus? Knowing that it has been tested and failed the smooth and quiet test? Count me out. GunGeek (Marty) p.s.- Love your blog.

Thank for the email, Marty. I see what you are getting at and where you are coming from. Now take a look at this... Howa is the outfit doing the manufacturing of the Vanguards for Weatherby. Howa also has their own line of essentially the same gun, but in a different stock and using a different bolt. Howa doesn't have an accuracy guaranty like the Vanguards do. Weatherby guarantees that the Vanguards are going to be good shooters. You have that promise in writing. Weatherby test fires each one before packaging. The ones that just happen to shoot very very well get pulled, tested, and packaged as being above par. I've shot a lot of Vanguards this last two years, and Howa 1500's too. All are great shooters that I wouldn't mind buying if I was in the market for a decent off the shelf shooter. It's not that the regular Vanguards of sub standard, its just that some are fantastic. Isn't it worth a little extra coin for one that is fantastic? Every once in a while we will open up a Vanguard box and take a look at the target that the rifle shot... DUDE! You would be amazed at some of these guns. Like the .243 we unboxed last week. Amazing. You could cover the group with a dime. I'd pay some extra scratch for that one. (But I am not in the market for a .243) Come on Marty, you've probably done this yourself. Haven't you ever paid the extra 10 bucks for a “Hand Picked” example of a Curio & Relic or Surplus gun? This insures that you get an example that is above par. And it may sound silly, but Ford has been doing that for decades on their cars and trucks. They put badges like S or LS or SE on the unit... Sure they throw in a nicer radio or something... but the base car is the same.... the SE's are just better than average. I have an SE, and I love it. It's not saying the lower grades are poorly. Don't be so hard on the Vanguards for under 500 for a black synthetic version, it's the best bang for the buck. Truth be told, I think they are undervalued. They should be about a hundred bucks more.

IDPA Night Shoot: Last Saturday night was an IDPA night shoot. I think I mentioned this before. I got the overall results back. I took 3rd place. Not bad. Last Night Shoot I took 4th just hours before I went in for knee surgery. I did loads better. The 3rd place is acceptable to me for the moment. The #1 and #2 shooters in my class are fantastic handgunners. On several stages I was dogging the second place slot but one certain stage had me at a disadvantage because a steel plate target did not fall after being hit solidly with 230 grain SXT hollowpoints. A fellow I worked with ran that stage and had the same problem, but he but almost a whole magazine on it before it finally fell. There was a hitch in it... sometimes a strong fart would knock it over. This happens in shooting sports. Certain variables will play an effect for some shooters and not others. It isn't perfect. But it is fun as hell. If you are not participating in IDPA or other practical handgun type event, you are missing out. It is a great schoolmaster. I know a lot of guys that don't like IDPA or PPC or IPSC shooting because it is too gamey. Yeah, sometimes it is. But at it's least, it puts you the shooter on the spot and under some pressure to perform with your firearm. A badguy is not going to allow you Do Overs or ask you to wait for the buzzer. You can learn more in one IDPA competition than you can in hundreds of outings of casual shooting.

Problems with Reloading: Ogre Ranch has a little territory war going on. Mrs. Ogre is the Queen of the Castle here. I have had a small office which is becoming a nursery. This means my office gets to move to a larger room now, but I have to share it now with Mrs. Ogre and my Eldest Son who is home schooling again. The boy reads at a collegiate level and public school is holding him back like he was chained to a boat anchor... like on off the USS Nimitz. How many kids do you know that have read damn near every book Dad has read? How is this a problem for reloading? Now Mrs. Ogre is saying that I can not start reloading in the house. She says her Dad reloaded and it was a mess and dirty and she doesn't want it. This is a problem. Ammunition is getting expensive and I need more of it. What is going to have to happen is that I am going to have to rebuild The Shop, get it weatherized, weatherproofed, and insulated before I can start reloading. This actually isn't going to happen. The Shop is in shambles and it would be easier to raze it and build a whole new shop in it's place. So I am left unable to get back into reloading as I had planned. I'm sitting her sipping on a Coke Zero with a twist of lime, and the song playing on the MP3 play list right now is “House Full of Bullets”, by Joe Satriani. A fantastic bit of work. It's one of my favorites as is “Raspberry Jam Delta-V”. But that's another thing... Right now Ogre Ranch is not a House Full of Bullets. This saddens me. I would have expected Mrs. Ogre to be supportive in something that saves us money. A lot of money now days. My favorite cartridge to shoot is $1.70 per shot now. If I reloaded it, I could have it for about .50 cents. Less even. If you want to get into reloading – NOW is the them. Right now. Hornady has a great deal going on. Buy a Hornady reloading press and you can get up to 200 bucks worth of Hornady bullets for free. That should help get you started. Only problem is I could buy the press, but I've no where to set it up. I'll have to break through Mrs. Ogre's wall first. Easier task would be to storm the beaches of Normandy – but it history proved that it was possible.

When will somebody start making a new Winchester 1895? I want one. But I want a shooter and originals are too valuable to shoot regularly. I don't know about .405 Winchester, but one in .325WSM or .375 Ruger would be fantastic.

Regarding Requiem – WTF WAS THAT?

9-18-07:  At my little shop in the middle of the Uintah Basin, we are doing a package deal special on some hunting rifles. The guns with scopes mounted and bore-sighted, ready to go at good discounts. So I was mounting scopes all freaking day long. I can't stand even looking at a set of rings anymore. Stevens, Howa, or Weatherby Vanguard in all common chambering. So its a low, low medium, and medium level quality. These are ready to go... off the shelf ready to go to the range to get zeroed. But say you want something that isn't ready to go... no problem. We can do a package in anything else you want. No worries.

Speaking of bore-sighting. We don't have a bore-sighter that can do .204 Ruger. The rod/shank that the goes into the bore to center the meter is just not available in .20 cal. At least not that we have. So to bore-sight a .204 we have to pull the bolt out and look through the bore and roughly adjust the scope to what we see through the bore. Last week I did this for a fellow. I'm pretty good at this actually and at 50 yards, I can at least put you on paper. This isn't as easy as one might think. Evidently I've gotten better... Because this cat came in and said “I've got a bone to pick with you!” I'm thinking, what now? Then he grinned and said I was an inch and a half off at 100 yards. Wow. Not only wow, but that is actually closer than using the meter! I'm better than the meter - brilliant!

Another thing about the .204... I'm starting to get tempted for one. But I don't know why. I wont get one until I can come up with a valid justification. I'm also a bit tempted to get a .17 HMR. The reason is that the ammo for the .17HMR is cheap and plenty. Not that I have any use for it. If I wanted something cheap and ineffective, I'd get a .223. A lot of people out here are saying that the .204 is more accurate than the .223. I'm not sure if I believe that. I shot a .204 out of a supposedly good rifle and the group was a nice half an inch at 100 yards. Not bad. Then I shot a Rock River AR with an EoTech sight on it and it grouped like a clover leaf.

Speaking of the Eotech optical gun sight: I'm not sure if I like it. Sure, it is accurate enough and easy to adjust... but I'm just not sure if I like it. You have two buttons on the unit that allow you to adjust brightness and turn the unit on and off. I'd rather you have a dial for brightness and a switch to turn it on and off... not the same buttons for both. In all honesty, I prefer the Trijicon sight. Any Trijicon. Why? Simply simplicity. You shouldn't have to think about your gun sight.

BBC America: I have been taken to task about insulting the BBC. Sure, there are a lot of shows I don't like... and no I don't just like the comedies. Top Gear of course is my favorite. But I also like MI-5. No, really... I do. And Coupling. Oh, yeah, that is a comedy isn't it? Gordon Somebodies Kitchen Nightmares is interesting. Such cooking shows is fascinating because it's like Science Fiction to me. After living with my wife for so many years, it's amazing to see someone actually use a kitchen for something other than ruining what had been good meat.

Our man Larry Correia has FINALLY open the doors on his own Blog. 8 years ago he had a small corner of called Correia's Corner that allowed him to vent a bit... now he's venting all on his own. Yes, I'm a proud BlogFather yet again. Larry's blog is MONSTER HUNTER NATION. Book mark this one. Larry is a fantastic writer and a good guy. Even better shooter. He competes in 3Gun competitions out on the Wasatch Front and helps run FBMG full time now. Well, after he's done training his replacement at his old accounting job – then he will be full time at FBMG. Something he's been looking forward to since FBMG was first born. So congrats to Larry on both counts!

9-17-07:  The Open House at the Buckskin Hills Range went pretty well. The turnout wasn't huge, but those that did had a great time. I was helping out on the rifle range in the 100 yard range open to the public. We did not set anything up in the 600-1000 yard range like I was expecting and looking forward to. In any case, I assisted fellows getting their rifles zeroed, and I even held a little AR-15 class. I let people try out shooting an AK-47 to dispel the general fear and distrust of the Evil Black Rifle with the wicked looking long curved magazine. Several kids tried it, several adults... but the interesting thing was how many grown adults who have no problems with other guns would recoil in disgust at the idea of firing the AK. In my opinion the AK is a brilliant weapon. Several LEOs made their appearance and strutted the range like a bunch of peacocks with their tactical guns and Dodge Chargers with more antennas than Navy ships. A couple of the LEO's were pretty cool guys that I've dealt with in the past, and they know me as a reliable source of council in matters of hardware and the application of same. The other guys that didn't know me, the hippy guy with long hair tried to brush me off... some even had the gall to question my hardware. I was shooting a Rock River M4 with an EOTech optical gunsight and a Surefire rail and light set up. “What do you need a gun like that for?” My answer was straight back into his eyes... “Same reason you do, but thank God the Bill of Rights doesn't stipulate requirements.” Dumbass. This is why “Cops” in general, get a bad rap from Shooters. I don't mean to dig at my many LEO readers out there, but think about that for a second – I know you guys don't have that attitude, but I'm sure you know other cops you work with that do. Ask them if they question guys who own performance cars. “Why do you need a car like that?” When talking about cars, the question becomes stupid doesn't it? If you are a cop that questions the second amendment, you need to go back and take all your Con-Law classes again. I also suggest keeping your dumbass mouth shut or at least give a shot at thinking before you open it. The dignity you save may be your own.

Hordeman Carl came out with his pretty new SIG 556 Carbine. I have to say, it is fantastic. I'll have one in .300 Whisper, please. The SIG did have a couple glitches in the design... specifically the Front and Rear flip up sights. Carl had removed them and installed flip up sights off an AR, which were much better and much more accurate. For some reason the rear sight had to be turned almost all the way to one side to get the gun to shoot straight for him and for me. Once dialed in, the gun ran and ran and performed exactly how it should. Vastly different from an AR type gun... totally different feeling during firing. The AK and the SIG 556 never had any failures to fire... a couple LEO M4's on the other hand had an occasional stoppage. Typical. As far as most of the LEO's shooting goes – well, if you want to rob a bank in Vernal... go for it... because most couldn't hit crap. I think this is why LEO's prefer to shoot at their own ranges. Don't want the public to see and they don't want to see the public out shoot them. Especially civilian guys with long hair and a limp. On the other hand, there were a couple LEO's who can really shoot. Just so happens that these are the same guys that I know. Funny how that works out.
After the Open House finished and everyone cleared out, we had a couple hours before it got dark. At this point I was in dire need of food. Burger King had what I needed, namely a Texas Double Whopper and Diet Coke. I know that might not have been the best thing for me to eat, but I've been a very good boy lately and have been extremely careful about everything. I was allowed a splurge and took advantage of it. Damn, that Whopper freaking ROCKED.

Back at the range, it was time for the night shoot. My Kimber Tactical Custom II came out to play. Our friend Ben ran with his Springfield V-10. Carl was there for the shoot but elected to observe the event and lend a hand with scoring. Some of the stages were the normal and typical IDPA set ups... nothing remarkable. One however, was amazing. It took full advantage of our new 360 degree firing range, and was a tactical course, not timed. This one you had to think and move. I am happy to say that according to the judges, I set the course record on that stage.

I had a number of requests and was granted a green light to teach some classes. Handgun and Rifle classes. I've not taught a course since Virginia and I'm probably very rusty on teaching now... but I think I will. People want to learn more and there is nothing else out here like that where a guy could just take a day class. Sure they could drive all the way out to the Wasatch and take some classes from the cats at FBMG... or drive into Colorado and go to Valhalla... but these guys don't have the time. Often they only have one day off a week and time is a huge factor. So a local one day class would be a benefit to many. Only problem I have now is putting together the course curriculum.

I also put some rounds through my latest, a S&W 1911sc. This is a basically a light weight Commander .45 made by Smith, using their Scandium alloy for the frame. The result is a very light and easy packing .45. It shoots very well, accurate and is so far, perfectly reliable. There is a bit more felt recoil because the gun is so much more lighter than other Commanders I've shot. The 1911sc is no longer in production... but they still make the same thing as the 1911PD. Great handgun, worthy of the 1911 legacy. See my review of it in an upcoming issue of Concealed Carry Magazine.

For that review, I submitted several photos, some of which are taken in front of a certain book case. One of those books is especially ancient and is a first printing of a translation from a book published in latin by the Catholic Church. The translated title is “The Witch's Hammer”. I am looking forward to reading this book – oh so very carefully – very much. From what I know of it, it seems to be a Marriage Guide for Men.

Speaking of new things: I picked up an all steel Butler Creek folding stock for Maggie, me 870 Marine Magnum. Much better now. The folding stock makes it short and handy enough for storage and transportation, the pistol grip makes it more stable for shooting... but the only downside is that I lose the awesome Limbsaver recoil pad. I can get another Limbsaver and fix it to the stock and make it work... but in the mean time, my shoulder misses it. I also picked up a new Galco leather holster for my Kimber. Okay, sure, I'll let my Smith ride in it... I'll be nice. Instead of using the little kydex rig that Springfield sells and packages with their guns... I used the Galco for the IDPA night shoot. It worked perfectly and looked fantastic doing it. The Galco Combat Master rig keeps the gun tucked in nicely to your side, keeps it at a good angle for concealment, and it smooth out the profile to reduce the risk of printing. I love it. It would be nice if it carried the gun a little higher... but this is just fine as it is.

9-14-07:  Good on Benelli: Georgia State Police has just contracted for 1,000 new tactical Nova shotguns. The Nova is a personal favorite of mine... however, the better option would have been for the tactical version of the Super Nova. A better shotgun for LE work all round. Still, Kudo's to Benelli.

Email:Ogre, You recently mentioned the Weatherby Vanguard. I don't know your thoughts on this rifle, but I own one in 7mm rem. mag, and I'll tell you this, It is a fine rifle. I am a man of modest means, and I can tell you that a 1" rifle at 200 yards is awesome for a rifle that costs $400. I shoot Federal Premium 150 gr. soft point boat tails. My dream rifle would be a Remington model 700 in stainless with a composite stock with the jeweled bolt, no sights, with a Leupold vxl 50 mm. I don't know all of the Remington prefixes, but the sts ss looks good, yet doesn't have the jeweled bolt. Which rifle am I wanting? I truly agree that the bickering should stop among us gun toters. I love Glocks, my neighbor loves his H&K, my dad-in-law loves his Charter arms Bulldog (we all own 1911's and love them for paper shooting). The great thing is that we all live on the same street,are armed,and proficient shooters that have each others backs. Horde member, Steven

Thanks for the great email, Steven. While the Weatherby action isn't a personal favorite, I've much respect for the Vanguard series. Built in Japan by Howa, those guys take very special care and give attention to the details that other rifle makers wish they could give. Weatherby made a smart move having Howa do the manufacturing... these guys are like the Toyota of Rifles now. Weatherby backs up the Vanguards with their accuracy guaranty, which is something you don't get on Mark V's and have to step up to the Accumark line. Very nice touch. This makes the Vanguard line of rifles THE BEST BANG FOR THE BUCK on the market. You have to spend a bunch of money to get a better built and backed rifle. Simple as that. Now if you want a serious rifle, look at the Vanguard SUB-MOA rifles. Freaking TACK-DRIVERS. But back to the regular ol' Vanguards, I'm partial to the Stainless/Synthetic version. It's about a hundred or so bucks more for the stainless. Still, at that price, which is about 200 bucks less than other rifles that would be direct competitors, the rifle shoots just as good, you have a wide selection of calibers, and you save that two hundred bucks that you can put to a better scope.

Hold on here – hard segway into a scope rant!
Look at it this way, I'd rather spend more money on the scope than on the rifle. Most everything you do with the rifle, you do through the scope. The scope isn't something to skimp on. If you have to skimp on the scope, get a cheaper rifle instead. So instead of mounting up a VX-I you could step up to a VX-II and your rifle will be all that much more effective in the field thanks to superior optics and internals.

I talk a lot about Leupold scopes.... but that doesn't mean other scopes are not worthy. The Bushnell Elites are not bad... I like the Nikon Buckmaster line for a bang for the buck scope. Buckmaster topped Vanguards is a bread and butter combination where I sell guns. The most popular calibers for those are the .270WSM, 7MM RM, .300WSM, .30-06, and .257 Weatherby Magnum. Now, this isn't a racial commentary, just an observation. I sell more .257 Weatherby Magnums to our Native American customers than anything else. The Ute Tribe must have made it their official caliber or something. In all seriousness it seems to be like 10 to 1 out here for those Vanguards in .257 Weatherby Mag. In fact, I can only remember selling 2 of them to white guys. What I want to know is what do these Utes know that us White Guys don't? Just curious... are Native Americans from other tribes hot on the .257 like they are out here? Or is it a Ute thing?

Regarding Nikon scopes: The new revamped Nikon Monarch series. At first I liked them... I liked the new power ranges, 4 times multiplier rather than the standard 3 times... gives us a broader power band. But the scopes themselves are not as attractive. Looking through them they seem every bit as bright, if not more so than the older Monarchs, but they don't seem as sharp and the reticules seem heavier than they used to be or need to be. I'm not such a fan of them anymore. Oh, I still sell a bunch, they are a good scope... but they just don't seem to be worthy of the name anymore. Take the flip up covers that come with them. Chinsey, cheap, flimsy and a bitch to keep shut. If I was the Nikon CEO, whoever greenlighted those covers need to be fired, or offered the chance to commit sepuku to save his honor. Go to your local gun shop, look at the new Monarchs and I bet the store took those flip up covers off the display scopes. We did. Why? Because they are so awful they cheapened the whole unit. It's worth it to just buy the Butler Creek flip up units. Those will at least shut and stay shut when you close them. I mean, really... how difficult is it to make a flip up lid? It took effort to botch it up so badly. We have flip up lids on 99 cent bottles of shampoo and ketchup that always work just fine... and those are disposable. We are talking a lid for a 500 dollar scope you are putting on an equally expensive if not more so rifle and this becomes something that is able to be passed down for generations. The other thing Nikon fumbled... on the examples I've looked through, there is a clear and distinct ring of distortion around the edge of the field of view at all power settings, and at all ranges and even after you have adjusted the parallax focus. This isn't something that you should have on your signature line, not when the scope market is so crowded with competitors. You can get a 3-9 Zeiss for less money that this 2.5 to 10 Monarch. Nikon seriously screwed the pooch on these new Monarchs.
This is one of the reasons I remain a diehard Leupold fan – they just keep it simple and get it right without the hype or drama, and they have the best service in the whole industry. Yeah, I'll drop an extra hundred bucks for that. Your already into the whole package, rifle, sling, scope, rings and bases, a couple boxes of good ammo... usually at least around 800 bucks... make it 900 and get the Leupold. The wallet will not feel the difference but you will have the luxury of a worry free rifle set up. At least that's my thinking on the matter.

Some gun grip stuff for sale: These things have to go. Pachmayr grips, all new and unused. Some NIB, some the box has fallen apart: Each set 15 bucks plus USPS First Class shipping. All sales final.




CV-G Gripper for Colt V frame guns.

S&W Small N frame.

TC Contender


SK-GR Gripper for Round Butt K or L frames

SK-GR Gripper for Round Butt K or L frames

SIG P226

Astra ATR-S for the Astra .357

An unknown Pachy grip, looks like another S&W N frame grip.

A pair of black rubber Uncle Mike's grips for a Taurus PT-99 / PT-92.

Again, these grips are New and Unused. The store hadn't sold these and they have been sitting for years and years... packages are brittle and faded, but the grips are in great shape, ready to shoot.

4 HKS Speed Loaders for the .41 Magnum S&W 57 & 58. These 4 are NIB, all four for 25 bucks plus shipping.

Or I can sell the whole lot for 45 bucks + postage. Great if you own a pawn shop or have a lot of old shooters and want to dress them up a bit.

Saber Defense: I had the chance to look at the offerings from an outfit called Saber Defense. These are the cats that make the barrels for the M2 .50 machine guns and gattlings. I say cats because their logo looks like the Thunder Cats. Not a logo I would have picked for a tactical weapons company wanting to be taken seriously. Looks more like something aiming for the Anime and Comic Book market. That said, the rifles themselves look damn good. The parts fit together properly and not just making tight fits pass as quality. If I was looking for an AR-15 type rifle, I would seriously consider one of these Sabers. The only downside they have, and I told the sales rep this straight up – the triggers are total shit. Looking at the internal workings of the components and the finish on them, they look like rough hewn lumber. The trigger pull is just about the worst I've ever felt on any rifle – ever. It was the CZ-100 of rifle trigger pulls. Every bad thing you could have, the Saber rifle had it. Long, heavy, gritty to the point of gravel, and at the same time mushy and vague. I point this out because I want it fixed. These thundercats are aiming to be a notch above a Rock River and if that is the target they are trying to reach, they have a long way to go to reach the Bang for the Buck that they are charging. Should these triggers actually work like triggers and not the start lever for the log plume ride at Lagoon – then these rifles have the potential to be truly outstanding as far as AR-15's can go. I really hope the other Saber rifles have better triggers. Saber has two rifles that I would be interested in: First is the M4 Tactical. This is a short flat top AR with a 4 rail handguard, ergo grip and flip up sights. I say I would be interested in it if it was about 900 dollars less. For 900 less, I could get the S&W M&P Tactical which is set up about the same but uses a 6 position stock that looks like the normal 4 position stock. I don't think the Saber stock is worth 900 bucks. I would also be interested in the Saber varmint rifle. But for a hundred bucks less I could get the S&W Performance Center varmint rifle which looks better, more distinctive.

Scope Fight: I was examining two scopes side by side today. Swarovski's new Z6 2-12X TDS scope verses the now not so new now Leupold VX-7 3.5-14X B&C. As a bench mark, I used a Zeiss Conquest 3-9X. Zeiss promises that their's magnification rating is a true magnification... so when they say they have a 3 power, it is actually 3 power and not 2.5 or 3.2... but really 3. This may or not be actually true, but we used it as the benchmark anyway. What we found was that someone was lying. We set each scope to 4 power and focused them on a “target” that was about 25 yards away. The Z6 didn't bring the target in nearly as close as the other scopes. In fact, we had to crank it up to 6X before the scope came up to par. Even at 4X, the Z6 didn't have the field of view that the Leupold (or the Zeiss) had. The sales rep insisted the Z6 had the better field of view, but this was just not true, by a foot and a half on each side of the target. The Rep also made the claim of better eye relief. This was close, but the VX-7 like all Leupold scopes had superior non-critical eye relief. Cranking each one up to max magnification, the Swarovski didn't bring in the zoom like the Leupold did, even when I set the Leupold to only 12 when I could have cranked it up the rest of the way to 14. The Z6 came in second place in everything but the price. The MAP price of the Z6 is 1769.00, which means that is the minimum advertised price. We are selling the VX-7 for 160 bucks less. Considering Swarovski's glowing technical terms and claims, the VX-7 is just as bright, clear, color correct, and if anything it magnifies more than it says. Sure, the Z6 is a better looking rifle, but that's less important. Here is what I've seen both do for customers needing repair. Swarovski gets a hunter, a week before the hunt, who has a bad scope. They will pull a demo scope of equal or lesser value to send to the guy to hook him so he doesn't miss his hunt while his scope is being repaired. Because they know how much they guy spent and how important a hunt is to the hunter. That's awesome because the guy doesn't go without. But what about Leupold? Well, Leupold wins there too because I've seen them just send the guy a bran new scope, not some used knocked around demo... because we've seen Swarovski reps toss scopes to the ground to show how tough they are. I don't want to take a scope that some guy threw onto the ground, I don't care what scope it is. Now I'm not saying this to dog on Swarovski... because they are bloody great. I'm going over this to point out just how brilliant the Leupold is. It's fantastic. I'd pick the Leupold every time. And that's not even taking into account the cold hard fact that the Leupold will handle a hell of a lot more recoil than anything else... that's just icing on the cake now. So buy the Leupold, and get a shit load of ammo to go with it for the same amount of money as the Z6.

9-13-07:  The CZ line of rifles is calling to me... The ones I'm really liking is the CZ550 Medium Magnum... It comes in 7MM Rem Mag and .300 Win Mag. Either one is a good choice. I might have to get one eventually. Then there is the awesome Safari Magnum. One in .416 Rigby would also be a temptation. I just wish it was available in .505 Gibbs, which is a caliber that I've been fascinated with ever since I first read Hemingway. Still, the light and handy little 527 in 7.62X39MM is going to be my next rifle... No question about that now. But that doesn't mean I can't plan ahead and the rifle after that. Since I don't have any long brown guns in my collection, I figure I might as well get good ones. All my long guns are either “Stainless and Synthetic” or just all “Black and Evil”. Something with a nice wood stock wouldn't go amiss... with a glossy Leupold VX-III. I could live with that.
The downside of looking at different calibers is that I compare them with the 7MM Rem Mag and I just can't come to enough rationalization to validate the extra purchase. The 7MM Rem Mag is just that damn good. A certain Field & Stream Editor called The Seven “overrated” a short time ago. But that editor is a blithering idiot that should be reviewing lollipops instead of things of men and machine. I'm in total love with the 7MM and I think that might have been obvious for some time now. I used to be a big .30-06 fan. Not so much anymore. I still like the .30-06, don't get me wrong. If it was good enough for my Grandfather to slay the Huns with, it's good enough for every Tom and Dick in America... but I just like The Mighty Seven more. Other cartridges out there that have more power than The Seven do so with a great deal more punishment to one's clavical and rotor cuff. To really better The Seven you have to step up into a .300RUM where you are spending almost twenty bucks more per box and you are losing fillings from your teeth.

Yes, there is that weird cartridge called the 7MM Rem Ultra Mag, but I've only seen a couple guns chambered in it and it only comes in someplace between the other two I've mentioned. Not worth it for the novelty. Not unless you find a screaming good deal on a nice 7MM RUM rifle that comes with a case of shells, ready to go.

Oh, the 527 in 7.62X39MM has been ordered.

More on the 154 SST vs 162 BTSP: The 154's BC is .530 vs the 162's .514. This gives the 154 grain SST a decided edge. This means the 154 drop is only -6.2” at 300 with a 200 yard zero. The 162 is 6.7”. That's not much at 300 but stretch that out to 600 yards and you have six inches more drop than the 154's 60.5” That's a lot. That's the difference between a kill and wound. A hit or a miss. Energy shows some more impressive numbers. The energy for the 154 grain load at 200 yards is 2470 foot pounds of energy and 1460 at 600... Thats better than the 162 BTSP by almost a hundred pounds. Unless someone can convince me otherwise, I'm going to switch. And don't give me the Elk argument or the Black Bear argument... Because I know for a fact that the 154 SST will kill either and both just fine. Should I get a tag for a nice big Brownie... I'm rolling with a .338 Ultra Mag, thank you very much. So pretty much everything I'll ever do with a 7MM, I can do with the 154 SST. There is the 162 grain SST bullet out there, but they don't sell loaded ammunition with that bullet... it would be a strict reloader bullet. The 162 grain SST would buck the wind a lot better, but I'm thinking I'm going to hold off on that until I'm reloading again. When am I going to start reloading again? Soon. Very soon. Pretty much as soon as my shop gets in some more Hornady reloading presses. I'll be reloading for all my rifle calibers, but it's time to start saving all my pistol brass too.

"Calling an illegal alien an "undocumented immigrant" is like calling a drug dealer an "unlicensed pharmacist". - Sent to us by Hordeman Bobbitt. It's all about language... We can't let the Left define the terms. They are Illegal Aliens and we are fighting the Global War On Terror. Simple as that. If you say otherwise, you are a few rounds short of a case.

The US Military is continuing with the M9 against all rationality otherwise: “Beretta U.S.A. Corp. announces receipt of purchase orders from the U.S. Army and U.S. Navy for a total of 10,576 M9 pistols (5,969 for the Army, 4,607 for the Navy). The purchase orders were issued against a multi-year contract between Beretta U.S.A. and the U.S. Army, which serves as executive purchasing agent of the M9 pistol for all branches of the U.S. Armed Forces.” This is fantastic news. The military once again strokes the gun industry with a request for bid thing and all the handgun makers jump through hoops for it... with several gunmakers developing whole new handguns just for the chance at the contract. And then the .Mil says “Nevermind”. And now they have gone for more M9's. Fantastic. Would it kill some fatass General to give a contract or two to an American company? Beretta USA is a subdivision of Beretta... an Italian company. HK, FNH, both have plants in the USA, and both have US offices and use American smiling faces... but they remain foreign companies. I'd much rather see the Army packing Kimbers, or Smith & Wessons. Whoa, I almost said Springfield there. Too bad the Springfields are either Croatian or Brazilian. Nothing wrong with those countries, but that isn't the point.

Yes, I'm aware of the hypocrisy of my advocating of US arms rather than foreign, yet here I am jonesing for a Czech made CZ 527. There is a difference here, in that I only want one rifle rather than placing an order for ten thousand of them. If I wanted a couple thousand rifles, you can be damn sure I'm going to order Kimbers, Remingtons or Rugers.

Speaking of Foreign rifles and Remingtons... Remington is now selling a number of rifles from Serbia. This is interesting... here I thought the only thing they exported from Serbia was ethnic cleansing. The rifles themselves look good and feel rough... just like most CZ rifles. If they prove to be as good of a shooter as a CZ then they should be pretty good guns. The CZ's wear in nicely, so I would imagine these Remingtons would be the same. Just do this for me... if you buy a foreign made gun that is rough – pay an American gunsmith to slick up the action and trigger or buy some American scope to top it.

We had a guy come into the shop trying to sell us some soft rifle cases. To get to where we are, he had to pass our section chuck bloody full of soft rifle cases of every type you can think of. He bragged that his cases are lined with a top secret material used by the US Military. We noticed that the cases were tagged “Made In China”. Top Secret US military stuff made in China? Uh huh. Thanks for coming in.

Ever since I first watched the movie “Labyrinth” many many moons ago, I've been in love with Jennifer Connelly. She's the gorgeous dark haired girl with green eyes. I mentioned my adoration to a fellow who instantly recommended a flick I've never even heard of. “Requiem For A Dream”, in which she plays a roll of some sort. The local DVD outlets do not carry this film and my NetFlix roster is chuck full of stuff... so I checked for it. They had it, and they had it cheaper than I could rent it had it been available. Sweet. I admit that I've watched movies just because she was in it... House of Sand and Fog, The Hulk, etc. She's always been great, even if the movie wasn't. So I'm looking forward to this one. The dude was adamant that I'd love this one. We shall see what the fuss is about.

9-12-07:  I've been thinking a lot about getting a CZ 527 Carbine in 7.62X39MM. My shop sells them in .223 and .204... we sell them all the time. They are nice rifles... very nice indeed. They are small, light, easy to swing and point. And they look sharp. Now think about this, in the 7.62X39MM chambering they are potent enough for just about anything. Survival, defense, offense... accurate enough for target shooting. Power wise, the round is certainly a medium cartridge at best. It falls short of the .308 while being slightly better than a .30-30. But that isn't so bad. Military history can vouch for the cartridge's effectiveness. And if you compare it to the .30-30, well, we all know that the .30-30 has taken more deer than any other cartridge in America. So that isn't such a bad pedigree at all. And better yet, a box of 20 rounds is still about 5 bucks. A case of 1000 is only 150 bucks. This makes it cheap to shoot... the only thing cheaper, pretty much are just rimfires. The one advantage that the 527 has over something like the AK or the SKS is that the CZ is a quality made firearm, not stamped out of sheet metal. And thanks to the design, it allows you to get a very low prone shooting position. This makes it a better hunting weapon, sniper weapon... pretty much it has everything that most of us need in practical terms. While at the same time it has a civilian friendly look. Doesn't look like something that Jim Zimbo would look askance at. The CZ has a lot of appeal. I would almost be tempted to trade my Vector Arms underfolder AK for a new CZ. Almost. There would have to be a Pot Sweetener with that deal... like a Leupold VX II 3-9 to go with it... Then perhaps. I'll think about it. I know, I know... keep the AK... just in case. But let me ask you this... in case of what? The Huns rampaging over the high Uintahs? Viking hordes crossing Flaming Gorge in longboats? Come on... I've seen Red Dawn more than once and I know for a fact that it wouldn't be too difficult to use the CZ or any other weapon I have, to engage, destroy, and loot the enemy for any all bits that I want.  Okay, no, I'm keeping my AK and will get the CZ with Coyote Money.

What is it with Brits and Dr. Who? The original series should have been enough to keep people away from the silliness... The giant afro and the insanely huge silly scarf... flying around in a phone booth. Now there is a new version, a remake/continuation of Dr. Who with a short skinny guy with big eyes. I guess Richard Hammond was busy, so they went with a look alike. Keeping up with the fine tradition of bad Sci-Fi, there is now another new show called Torchwood. This is a remake of Men In Black but with the lead guy who used to be a fighter pilot. Since they couldn't get Will Smith, they went with Biggles. Lovely. I tried watching these shows last Saturday since I wasn't really able to do anything else. I was kind of recovering from some adventures the day before. More on that later. Let me just tell you this straight up – British Sci-Fi is awful. The best they have is Red Dwarf, and some other show I don't remember the name of but has the fat guy in it from Hot Fuzz and Shaun of the Dead. But then again, you can't look at those shows as Sci-Fi. Those shows are comedies, and that is something the UK does pretty well. I'd like to see them do some Alternate History shows... such as if we didn't win the Revolutionary War or if they won the War of 1812... or if we didn't pitch in WWI. I'd like to see that. An interesting spin. I could see a lot of Englishmen sitting around a prison camp saying “If only the Yanks would have showed up.” It's not hard to imagine. Just think about what would have happened if our Congress now is the Congress we had then... “There are no Germans in Poland!”

Air Freshener for Gunnies: Here is what you do to make your ride smell like a Gunny ride. Take one of those pine tree shaped air fresheners you have, and throw it away. Take a piece of cardboard and cut it into a small pistol shape using your folding combat knife. I suggest using a Kahr MK9 as a pattern. Punch a whole in the cardboard pistol in one end of it, using a .17 caliber or .22 caliber rifle from about 25 to 50 yards. Push some para cord through the hole so you can tie it to your rear view mirror. It's almost ready to hang, but not yet. Now you can take that cardboard pistol and drizzle some Hoppes #9 on it... or use a cleaning patch wet with Hoppes #9 and wipe it all over the cardboard pistol. Now hang the cardboard pistol from the rear view window and there you go. Done. Now your car will smell like a real Man's car.

At the shop we were talking about this rifle we got in. A Kimber 8400 Custom in .338 Federal. This is the cartridge that I was hot for last year, in the rifle I wanted it in. After looking at it long and hard... I decided that I like it a great deal, but I'm going to take a pass on it. This was one of those things that having it in the hand wasn't as great as the idea of having it. One of the reasons it deflated my desire was the scope. An old original Nikon Buckmaster that was as cloudy as an average day in Seattle. This was an old first gen Buckmaster... which was a nasty tube of glass. New Buckmasters are pretty dang good optics, but this one wasn't. I know it could have been switched. But it was too late. Like taking a hot chick out on a date and she has bad breath. You know you could pass her some Altoids or something... but somehow she just isn't that hot anymore. That's what happened here. If you are looking for a good Medium-Big rifle, then .338 Federal is a great option for you. It is right there with the .325WSM but with less recoil. Reloading for it is simple... take a .308 case and open it up to take in that big fat .338 slug. It's a great package. But is a hunting purpose the best use for it? This would be a fantastic military cartridge. Specifically in suppressed applications. Think about that for a second... a .338 DSA Shorty? Sick!

BAD NEWS: THE HORROR!!!! Just found out that the girl we were having... turns out she is a BOY! AAARRRGGGGHHH!!!!! SIX BOYS! BLAST! We were so looking forward for the little girl. I'm depressed as hell now. Friday I'm going to go up to Flaming Gorge and spend the whole day fishing and not speaking to anyone.


Back to guns before I loose my mind. I'm thinking about switching my loads for my beloved 7MM Remmy. From the 162 grain BTSP load to the 154 grain SST load. Remarkably, the 154 load has a better ballistic coeficient than the 162 grain load, enough so that it has a better trajectory and retains more energy at long range. I think I might switch come spring time or when I blow through all my 162's on hand, whichever comes first.

9-9-07:  I've been a long time reader of Field & Stream. Years and years... been reading it forever. F&S used to be a pretty good authority on what worked and how to work it. Unfortunately they have lost all credibility with me. The latest issue that I've got, the 2007 Best of the Best Gear Awards, September's issue. The guys that did the reviews... I'm sure they have spend a lot of time outdoors hunting and fishing... and as such they have developed their own preferences. The downside is that they have no objectivity outside of what is in their own arsenals. Their reviews are full of errors, misunderstandings, gross exaggerations... all tilted to make the gear they like come out on top rather than crown what really is the best of the best. For example – The best of the best cartridge is the .375 Ruger? WTF? That is overkill for damn near everything in North America. Sure, it's cool... packing .375 H&H horsepower into a smaller and lighter package, they might as well as called it the .375 Short Mag. But how is it the best at anything? The .325 is a better all round cartridge... with a much better trajectory based on the loads I've examined. .375 Ruger has a trajectory like a Nerf football. A better choice for a jack of all trades cartridge just might be the new .270 WSM. That thing is North American Continent Capable. Anything here, anything in Central and South America, anything in Europe, anything in Asia and Africa save 5 or 6 specific species. (I'll let you figure out which critters you wouldn't hunt with a .270 WSM.) Okay, we could argue caliber choices for eons... I'll leave that up to for debating that one. The selected the Nosler Custom Model 48 as the Best of the Best rifle? Now tell me this, how come this 2500 gun that is the best of the best – isn't even available in the caliber that they elected the best of the best? What kind of collapse of reason is that? So you just skip the 800-1200 bracket where most of the middle class is buying their rifles at and go straight up to a “custom built” gun. That's kinda stupid in my opinion... You know what? That Nosler isn't even that great of a rifle. It's an ugly bastard love child of a Browning A Bolt II and a Weatherby Vanguard... the gun should cost 699 MSRP. If you want to drop 2500 on a rifle, you could opt for a Christianson Arms custom rifle, and get a real custom gun that actually uses a real custom barrel mated precisely to a tricked out Rem 700 action. I've never seen a Christianson that was less than stellar. Looking at the Nosler rifle, I'd rather buy one of five or six alternatives and save about a thousand bucks which could go for a kickass scope, like something out of the Leupold VX-7 series or a Ziess. In terms of accuracy, I'd happily put my stainless/synthetic Remington 700 7MM against that overpriced Nosler-thing. I'm sure it's a nice shooter. They make serious claims about it's performance... but I don't see it as The Best of the Best. Now, if Nosler wants to challenge my opinion here, they are welcome to it. I think everyone reading here knows of my Couldn't Give Damn Either Way So I Tell It Like I See It Objectivity... So Nosler can send me one of these Model 48's in .270 WSM and we will see how it stacks up. I'll put it against a Kimber Montana, a Remmy XCR, a Browning Composite Stalker, and a Weatherby Vanguard, all in .270 WSM. We will see how it stacks up. One last thing about the Nosler Model 48 - real custom guns don't have model numbers.

Bows? The best of the best is a bloody PSE? This is like saying that they best of the best car for 2007 is a Hynda Elantra. Where, how, and why did they pull this out of their asses? I think they have been standing in trout streams a bit too long... the water must have cooled their brains a bit. It's loud, with more shock and vibration than a Norwegian heavy metal band. Then they give a separate top 10 with a Bowtech guardian as #1? Sure it's a decent bow if you don't mind breaking limbs. But then they put the Hoyt Vectrix at #5? Then say the Vectrix is a remake of the V-Tec? Don't even get me started on this. They say it was loud and difficult to tune. These people are just retarded and/or paid handsomely by PSE and Bowtech. Don't even bother to read what these guys say about these bows... it makes no sense. Just find a joint that has these bows, shoot them yourselves, and then give the Vectrix the nod, because it's the top bow hands down.

I can't argue about the scope selections... the new Leupold VX-7 is seriously badass. It's my top pick. Then they have a 1-3 selection which is fine... Swarovski, Kahles, and the new Nikon Monarch 2.5-10... (if you have not seen the new Monarchs, check them out. They are super sweet... much better than the old Monarch series which wasn't bad at all for the money) Then they pick for forth place a Leatherwood Lux Short Malcom fixed 3X17MM? Who has even heard of Leatherwood and show me any hunter out there that would actually spend $300 for a 3X17MM scope that is long as some pipe you'll see in the plumbing section of ACE Hardware? I'm not saying that it doesn't have it's place... it's a nitch product. You top this on your old replica guns to keep that Cowboy era look. And maybe it is a fantastic scope... even for a scope with only a 17MM objective. But to place it at #4 is saying that this scope is better than Zeiss or Night Force or hell... even a Bushnell Elite which didn't even make it on the list. Yes, F&S did mention Zeiss' new RapidZ reticle, but they didn't rank the scope. I guess Zeiss didn't make the cut... they looked at the scope then tossed it into the gut pile. Nice work there.

Don't get me started on their shotgun selections... It looks like these guys just pulled out the shotguns they had in their gunsafes and lined them up... everyone of them is a trap/dove gun.... None of them you would actually want to take to the field in a 30 degree frigid wet morning looking for ducks. I think they might as well have said the best of the most useless guns. Okay, well the Remington and the Benelli selections were not bad at all, but no Super Black Eagle II's and no Gold Hunters? This is like reviewing cars but being careful not to ever mention Mercedes and BMW.

The best of the best muzzle loader is a CVA that can't get wet? The best of the best Muzzle Loader Bullet is a PowerBelt that can't group in most of the rifles tested? I've fired many a Powerbelt in the last year or so... and I can tell you this... it's a fine bullet for close range work in states that don't allow you to use sabots. (Like Colorado where the legislators are complete dumbasses passing laws about things they know nothing about. Typical Liberal Leadership there.) Do they (I'm talking about F&S again here) think we are that stupid or are they just that stupid? Then they mention the TC Triumph, but no mention of the Encore Pro-Hunter which just happens to be the hottest rifle on the market. No mention of the new Knight?

One of the best knives they picked out is a Buck Hartsook? This is basically a new version of the OSS Lapel Dagger, made as thin and light - and as a result as useless - as possible. No thanks.

Field and Stream has just completely lost it now. I don't know what they did to lose it, but at least they have Bill Heavy who is the Poor Man's Patrick McManus. Bill is at least the best thing F&S still has to offer. From now on, I'm not going to be buying any more F&S issues... I'll just pick one up at the news stand, turn to the back page, read Bill's article, then put the issue back down and send Bill the $3.99 directly.

I' am so very sick and tired of Democrats claiming that our Military is incompetent and only good at killing innocent civilians. Chuck Schumer last week had the gall to make just about the most asinine statement I've ever heard coming from the Senate floor. That the surge failed and peace is happening in spite of the surge and not because of the surge. I don't care what you may or may not think about the war in Iraq... the problem is this jackass legislator who does nothing but insult our Nation's Finest men and women every chance he and his ilk can. I take in News from all around the world... UK, Italy, Czech Republic, Netherlands, Greece, New Zealand... just to name a few. I never hear any of their leadership shitting upon their own military like these Anti-American Democrats do on a constant basis. Sure, Brits got down on Tony Blair, but they never made a mockery of their own forces in Iraq. I can't describe my feelings regarding the Democrats we have in Washington. I don't feel any warm fuzzies to the Republicans, but at least they are not deriding the military serves as extension of National Policy.

Point of Fact: At no time in the history of the world has military action taken place where the military has done so much to avoid hurting civilians and have done so much to actually go out of their way to help civilians. This is a classic example of the Left's inability to look at any historic perspective. Same as the Left's inability to look at 5 minutes ago.

This new movie with Jodie Foster... the brave one. She's packing a Kahr in the movie, uses it to defend herself and what not... But she herself doesn't believe that you have the right to do so. She's perfectly comfortable making money off using a gun... a ton of greenbacks there... but you can't have a gun. She's making millions, but you should just get raped and killed because that's morally more ethical that stopping the criminal from committing criminal acts. This is a form of hypocrisy. Hypocrisy is not something exclusive to Hollywood celebrities. We hear this form of hypocrisy often from The Left. Even some from The Right. Only the police and the military should have guns.

Next time you hear that sort of statement, that only the police, or the military or the government should have guns... ask the this simple question:

Who are the police and the military and the government?

They are us. We are the law enforcement, we are the military, and by GOD – WE are the government. WE are CITIZENS of this great nation, we are not subjects to it. One of us swears an oath to uphold and defend and that magically enables him to pack a weapon? That's not how the founding fathers arranged it. The way they saw it, all of us are empowered to act.... this is why we vote... this is why we have the power of citizens arrest... this is why we serve on juries. We The People, this is what it is all about. The modern liberal attitude that someone else will take care of it, and someone else is responsible for it, and someone else is to blame if it goes wrong... that attitude sickens me. YOU are SOMEONE. So stand the hell up and BE SOMEBODY. I guess that is what this Jodie Foster movie is about, kinda. (I've not seen it... not going to either) Too bad Jodie Foster doesn't get it. You don't have to be a vigilante... the system is one we as The People created, and it might not be perfect, but it is the best there is. The only problem with the system is that we have the wrong people in office. Not just Federal, but all the way down the chain. The system works, it just needs to be staffed with the right players. Like a football team. If a player isn't the best fit for the position, you don't play him in that position... doesn't mean the position is faulty. You don't make Tiger Woods the Center on the offensive line. You don't even put him on the field. This is the problem that we have with our government... we have people in office with completely wrong skill sets. We refer to them as the leadership, but they don't lead anything. We need to work from the bottom up. We need to make sure we get good people into the right positions. Local first, then state, then federal. We need to elect the right players for the positions. I want everyone in The Horde to pay closer attention to local politics... because you will always find an ass in grassroots. Let's make sure we don't send that ass to congress anymore.

This should be the main game plan for any and all 3rd Party groups out there that want to have any chance of success. Do you know why we have a two party system even though there is no official two party system mandating it? Simple. It's all about foundations. Each party, Dems and Reps, have their foundations. They have the rock solid foundations that they have build that goes all the way through to even our local School Boards. If you want your third party candidate to move up in the world, you have to give that guy a foundation with the infrastructure to support him. This is why we haven't had a viable 3rd party since the Bull Moose party. (and that was a failure too) Your third party needs more than a campaign and lots of contributions... it needs voting districts. We have to have this... we have to get a strong 3rd party out there. Because our national colors are not just red and blue... we are Red White and Blue. Funny notice how when you say our country's colors, Red always comes first?

Mrs. Ogre is at the point now where she is demanding that I no longer go anywhere alone anymore. No more solo trips hunting coyotes or even fishing. Going it alone keeps me sane. Going alone is what I do. I like the solitude. I understand the risks and weight them before I take each and every step. But now there are risk factors that are out of my control and I think maybe she is right. But that doesn't make anything any easier. Since Ranger died, I've not had a hunting companion.

9-5-07:  E85 Ethanol is bad for the country: Renewable Energy is one thing when you talk about solar or geothermal or hydro electric... but cashing in the #1 Food Crop for a tank of unleaded? This is sheer stupidity. The stuff hasn't even caught on yet, and already it's crimping the economy with higher prices for – just about everything. Corn is used in so many different applications for food. Not just Corn Flakes and Chips or on the Cob... but Dairy and Meat too as corn is a vital part of feed for the animals... cows, pigs, chickens... all have a diet that contains large amounts of corn. With so many farmers turning their crops into Ethel, there is less to turn into food... with less to turn into food, the more it costs the consumer. As a fuel it is less than ideal. It might burn a little cleaner and have a higher octane rating... but it contains less energy per gallon. Most cars can suffer as much as a 20% loss in Miles Per Gallon with E85 in the tank... even if you don't feel a loss of power. Unless of course your car's engine is tuned for E85. So with an increased thirst, more demand for it.... more corn is converted... food gets more expensive. The amount of energy required to produce Ethanol is staggering compared to just about any other energy source. E85 is not the answer, it is the problem. E85 is promoted the most in areas with lots of corn farmers... farmers who are happy to have a crop that has a much higher market value now. Farmers who are happy at the expense of everyone else. E85 Ethanol is stupid... you would have to have an IQ of 85 to like it.

I think it's cool when guys come in to the shop wanting to look at only scopes with Mil-Dots. Not that Mil-Dots are all that great, but because they want to learn how to be better shots. They see guys who really want to do it and they are emulating that. Wanting to be a good marksman is a great goal to have. It requires time and patience and good equipment. Good equipment is not something to skimp on, but you don't have to have any specific gun or scope... just don't get cheap stuff. If it says Tasco or Simmons on it, take a pass. It might be okay to get started, but get yourself some good gear. It makes a difference. But let us not confuse one simple fact. You can not buy proficiency. Just because you got the best gun and the best scope does not mean that you are going to be any better than the guy with an old Winchester with an old Weaver scope. It's all about knowing your weapon. Knowing your ballistics. If you don't know that, then it doesn't matter what gear you have. If you want to get good, you have to do a lot of shooting. Regularly. And I'm not talking about blowing out rounds and just throwing lead. That's just blasting... masturbation... Take each shot carefully. Study each shot. Study the point of impact relative to the point of aim. Ask yourself how and why there is a difference. What factors came into play that you didn't account for? If you want to become good – real good – it is a commitment. It's a passion. Don't start out shooting far, start in close and ease your way out. Take your time.

I am diabetic, and my body is dying. This is something that I denied for several years now. Then I thought that I could control it on my own with diet. Its the cause of my gout ridden knee and ankle. It is the reason that my eyesight as worsened over the last two years. It is the reason that the tips of my big toes are numb. It's the reason that I suffer from blackouts. It is the reason that I've been living with extreme chronic pain for years.

I've ignored this too long... instead of going to see a Doc, I have been going hunting and fishing, hoping it will just all go away. But it's only become worse. Just moving is a symphony of agony in my legs. (Oh, the knee that was operated on is fine... it's the best damn part of my body now) Yet I have to move. I get bored easily if I can't get out and do something. My job at work is very easy... I talk guns and scopes and related things... I'll mount a scope on a rifle while talking guns. This isn't hard work. But even this job is becoming too much for me to do. It fatigues me beyond my level of endurance. It used to be my goal was to just make it home... now it is just to make it to my car at the end of the day... I don't know how I actually make it home. I can't eat much anymore. I've lost weight... 25 pounds in the last month and a week. My condition is critical. My body is slowly shutting down. If I continue to ignore it and live as I've been living... I will be dead before my next birthday. I've now submitted myself to the will of medical science.

Funny, but I always thought that should want to commit suicide, I'd do it on a motorcycle or in a sports car... James Dean or John Denver style. Now, I could very easily do it by popping open a large ice cold Mountain Dew. Such morbid thoughts are not new to me. Nor are they to anyone who lives with chronic pain. But I do not plan on doing any such thing. I wish to live. And while I live, I wish to live as much as I can... doing things that I enjoy. With friends and family, as much as possible. I have a daughter on the way, and I will see her grown. I'm going to battle this. This is what is going on behind the curtain at I'll mention the shooting... the hunting... the fishing... I'll talk cars... but I'll not talk doctors and medications. We all have our own personal monsters to fight. I just always thought mine was on the outside. So whenever I mention Cold Ones, I'm talking vitamin water or tonic or seltzer or something else along those lines. Please make no comment about this to me... I will not speak of it again. Ever. Cheers!

9-04-07:  Two of the most asked questions regarding muzzle loading are: First, is the Thompson Center Pro-Hunter worth it? Second, what optics do you top it with?

To answer the first question, yes it is. Every penny. If you take your muzzle loading hunting seriously, then absolutely. If you don't, then you are not going to shoot it enough to enjoy the extra features that make the Pro-Hunter earn its name. Notice those crescent shapes in the stock? Those actually have a function. Much like Benelli's Comfort-Tech stocks, the Pro-Hunter's stock becomes a shock absorber to help reduce felt recoil. You might not notice this with lighter loads, or even if you just fire a couple shots. But if you spend some time throwing lead downrange with magnum charges, you will feel the difference at the end of the day. You will also come to appreciate the easy ball start, which greatly aides loading that bullet down the muzzle. Since the barrel is anywhere from 2 to 4 inches longer than most other muzzle loaders, you have a slight ballistic advantage... but the real treat comes at the back end of the barrel. The speed breach. A 90 degree turn and the breach plug comes out. These features alone make the Pro-Hunter worthy of respect. There are more, but everything else is icing on the cake. You might not think them important in the shop while looking at neat looking guns that are cheaper, but they all add up into making the Pro-Hunter a fantastic weapon system. I've had guys try to tell me that their Traditions rifle is better. This is what is called a delusion. Possibly denial. If not then the shooter only thinks so because he is just a very poor shot or just stupid and wouldn't know the differences anyways. Either way, if you hear a guy say such nonsense, walk away because he's stealing your oxygen.

To top your Pro-Hunter, you need to live in an area that allows scopes on your Muzzle Loader. Colorado doesn't allow any, so you are out of luck. Utah, allows only 1X, which is no magnification at all. 1X scopes have a tendency of making your target look as much as 10 yards further away... I hate that. For Utah hunting I recommend a Red Dot type sight. Which one, doesn't matter because no one makes one that I can recommend. I would like to see a red dot sight with multiple adjustable dots inside aligned much like the pins in an archery sight. That would be kick-ass, but no one is making such a sight yet that I've seen. Tru-Glo makes a number of different Red Dot type sights that will work just fine. They are tough and durable, but I just wish they would use smaller dot sizes. A 5 MOA dot is too big. You don't need to have a dot the size of Jupiter inside your field of view. I didn't mind so much mounted on my 30-30 because I zeroed mine at the tip top of the dot and just made do. It served fine. If you don't like red dots and must have cross hairs, that's fine too... for those, I like Burris scopes. The 1X Burris doesn't make the target look farther away... much. It's the least of the evils but it is hampered by cross hairs the size of fence posts. You would be better off with a toilet paper tube crossed with rubber bands and taped to your rifle with electrical tape. Nikon is advertising a neat scope that I like the concept of. The BDC 250. This looks like just the ticket, but even though the shop I work at is a Nikon dealer, we've not been able to get any of these scopes in. Yet. I would like to see one myself befor I pass judgment. If it makes the target look 12 yards away like the others I've looked through it would irritate the heck out of me. But at least Nikon is on the right track... now if they could just do a red dot like that, it would be brilliant.

How come no one has made a scope yet that you can plug into your computer via a USB cable? Plug it in, punch in your ballistics and zero range, and it displays trajectory marks. Of course it would be expensive, faulty, and they would sell by the truck load. BSA or Simmons will probably be the first out with it, so it will probably work for awhile but it will be like trying to see through a jar of chicken broth like all their other scopes before they lose the ability to hold a zero.

Leupold's RX range finders: Way too much money for something that is way too complicated using optics that are way below standards for Leupold. They should be ashamed of them. You look through the optics on an RX and they look jaundiced and cloudy. Everything else looks clearer and brighter, even units costing half the money. Then you have to deal with trying to read and program all the modes and if you activate too many modes or modes in the wrong conditions, the unit goes tits up and you have to spend the next 20 minutes trying to find out way the unit says that the rock 40 yards down range is all the sudden in Alberta. You spend more time trying to read the range finder than you do actually ranging that Trophy Buck that is no bouncing away because it hears you cussing your rangefinder... and they advertise that other rangefinders are dumb. Ironic, that. Then there is the fact that even under the best of conditions, in proper modes and with both Fred Bear and Gale McMillan smiling down from heaven, they don't range as far as they say they do. They need to clean the viewfinder up, simplify the operation, make it range farther than they are rated, and change the name from “RX” to “ORX”... then Leupold would have something. I'd be totally jazzed to go hunting with an ORX. Wouldn't you?

ATV's and the US Government's Quiet Land Grab: It used to be that you could ride your ATV/Quad/Dirtbike pretty much everywhere you wanted to as long as it was not on public roads or in areas specifically designated where you could not ride. This last week that has changed 175 degrees... you still can't ride on public roads... but now you can only ride in areas specifically granting you the right privilege to do so. Even popular trails where riding has been popular for decades is now closed to it. This means that huge areas of wilderness – actually the majority of it – is now effectively closed to the public because the public no longer has access to it. The most frustrating part of this is the fact that many popular trails are not longer able to be used, but still open just happens to be trails that stem for US Forest Service or National Park Fee areas. So if you want to ride a cool trail – legally – you have to pay to enter a recreational fee area. These fees can be as little as 2 to 5 dollars and as high as 35 for a one day fee that expires that midnight, not even 24 hours from the time the fee is paid. I don't ride ATV's as I don't like them as recreational toys... and I don't have a utilitarian use for them at this time. I can see them as useful tools – mini utility trucks. I don't allow my boys to ride them. I've two doctor friends who make a good living reconstructing ATV injuries. Regardless of this, I support your right to ride them and I'm angered about your sudden revocation of that right.

On the other hand, I think ATV'ers did this largely to themselves. Most ATV'ers tend to make jackasses out of themselves when riding. Don't be offended if you are one – hear me out. The ATV's themselves are annoying as hell. If you are riding one, you don't notice it – you are too busy having a blast on it. If you are not riding it, you are subjected to a large plume of dust, 2-stroke exhaust in many cases, and ear splitting noise that sounds like the cross between Armageddon and a crashing jet aircraft full of running chainsaws. No one else is enjoying that but you on your ATV. Especially when you have a guy with a camera or a loaded firearm who is shooting in one direction and you bounce your jolly ass right where he is aiming with no thought but for your own pleasure. Or what about that hunter who has the trophy of a lifetime in his sights, then you on your ATV blasts through the area, scaring that trophy off into the woods never to be seen again. He's probably now aiming at you and is having to resist temptation!

If only you guys paid attention to others who are using public lands... and if only ATV's were quiet... then this probably wouldn't have become an issue at all. Notice how Mountain Bikers are not effected? No one cares about them because they are not loud and they don't kick up rooster tails.

Sure, Mountain Bikers are very annoying where they part their damn Subarus with bike racks on top helter skelter all over the place, then they ride around with their skinny asses in tight spandex shorts. If you are hot chick, this is cool... but I'm sorry, if you are a guy, you have no business wearing such shorts. Ever. Not even if you are a Senator from Idaho. Shut up. Don't email me with your reasons for wearing spandex shorts. If you have to, wear them under soccer shorts or something. No one outside of San Fran, Idaho or Las Vegas wants to see that. There has been more than one occasion where I've been in the desert and some Mountain Biker in Brokeback Gear rides up, to me asking directions to get to this trail or that, while adjusting his sweaty and only arguably concealed junk. I swear, from now on I'm packing an entrenching tool with me, cause the next time I see that again, the dude is going on a Milk Carton. Twice, this has happened to me... Once the guy even tried to shake my hand. No thanks. Don't grab your junk through something as thin as condom and then try to shake my hand. I'll probably have to kill you – a lot. These new Eco-Hippies can be worse than the original hippies from the 60's and 70's. My point being, other than nasty hygiene, these hippies are a lot more stealth than ATV riders. You can't hear them coming from miles away. They don't scare away wildlife, and you don't often find them out in the deep desert.

At least ATV'ers are not as obnoxious as Water Skiers.

I picked up a new Predator Call. The Cass Creek Nomad III with the Big Horn XL outdoor loud speaker attachment. This is a simple 5 call unit with a wireless remote. The remote has the same 5 buttons and looks like a smaller version of the main unit. The main unit, you position down range... attached to it is the Big Horn and you position it like you would a Claymore mine. From your sniper hide, you overlook the noisemaker as it draws in the predators. The price was very reasonable... and a hell of a lot less than the Phantom unit. Like less than half. The calls it makes are recordings from nature, so it should work great. It puts the sound out loud and clear enough. But you never know until you actually put it to work out in the field where the coyotes can hear it and respond to it. There are good points to using a less expensive call. Namely that it is less expensive. The downside is that since it costs less, more people use it and educated dogs might not go for it. Because of this, you have to offer something else for the dogs. To do this, I'm going to use something that looks like and works like an indoor insect fogger. It is called a Predator Bomb. It puts out a scent attractant. Simple as that. The combination of the sounds and the smells that are going to bring those dogs in running. The only thing missing is to tease the dog's sight. This is where a decoy can come in handy. You can use one if you want... you don't have to. But if you are in an area where the dogs are, but they don't want to come out and play... maybe a decoy can be the thing that brings them out. Often it is. Sometimes it doesn't work. When something just isn't working, it is because the dogs in that area are educated and they know that what they are hearing is an ill omen. So how do you counter that? Simple. You use a different call. If distressed rabbits are not doing it, try rodent squeaks. If that doesn't work, try a challenge call. If Skeery calls are doing it, try Primos. If Primos isn't doing it, try another brand. If electronics are doing it, try mouth calls. This is why you see serious predator hunters out there with an arsenal of calls. You can't hang you hat on one call. If you are in fresh territory, you can... but those areas are getting rare. Hunters that know of those areas keep them closely guarded secrets. I've got a couple areas that I like to prowl... and I'm always keeping an eye out for more. More areas mean more coyotes and that means more bounty to collect. I'm very mercenary about this. Here is the thing... this area that I live in used to have huge herds of Lopes. Now, there is only scattered handfulls. And this has happened recently. My first son was born in Roosevelt, Utah. Driving my wife to her doctor there, I would always see one or two herds of antelopes, each herd numbering at least 500 head. Now, the largest I've seen lately is about 6. Big reason for this? Well, the #1 reason is drought... but the next biggest reason is Predators. The only natural predator out here are coyotes. The dogs go for the fawns... the babies. When you kill the babies, the babies can't grow up to breed more babies. Simple as that. Nothing we can do about the drought, but we can help the herds by thinning the predators. It isn't just the Antelopes... deer and elk are effected too. Everything is effected.

The Guns of HOT FUZZ will be posted this weekend.

One Last Coyathon image:


Contributing Artists: 

8-31-07:  (written yesterday) You might say your not gay. You might not even think your gay. Let me help you out here. If you are trolling public men's restrooms for tubesteak, you are so very gay. You are also disgusting and pathetic. Freaking go to Thailand for that crap. I can see the Republicans asking for this guy to step down as a representative of Idaho. But what makes me scratch my head is why there are Democrats who are pointing and yelling for him to step down for this. What? Wait a second. No, no... Democrats don't get to cast lots on matters private matters of a sexual nature. They don't get to do that. They can't give one guy a pass for this, then crying foul when another guy does it. Look for or cook up another scandal. This one, you Dems need to just shut up and kick rocks. Larry Craig has some issues... but according to the rules of the game the Dems created – this is just a private matter that has nothing to do with his job. Okay, now the Libertarian in me says he can do whatever he wants to do... he can go tap Glory Holes in the bathrooms all he wants. That's fine for him. At the same time, the people of Idaho have every right to recall him from office. The Republican Party can ask him to step aside or withdraw their support. Considering that he is all over the news being cast in a light that isn't quite so lime... he might want to. The Liberals should be praising this guy and giving him some support. They should be saying that the Republicans should keep him. Now, the Libertarian in me also says that I have every right to think this guy is a disgusting slime bag who needs to be run out of Idaho on a rail.

Coyote Hunt: Horde, I gotta tell you... this was a kickass hunt. Like I mentioned before, I was informed of a location that some bothersome coyotes. So I scouted the area out. Looked at where they go to find food, where they go to get water, where they might go for shelter.

The water location looked like the most promising. The day was sunny and that was going to make for a thirsty afternoon. I placed my bet that the dogs would be wanting something to drink.

The river had steep cliffs and was difficult to get to the water... then I found where the banks were easy. Game trails led to this point like all roads leading to Rome. Across the river it was the same story. Also across the river was a dirt road leading down to near the water. On the other side of the road are large steep cliffs and rocky outcrops. This spot is a predator kill zone.

I sat on a rocky outcrop surrounded by brush that matched the camo I wore (still wearing as I type). I range the area using a borrowed Leupold rangefinder. I'm trying to learn to like the Leupold rangefinders... I like everything else from Leupold, it's all good right? The rangefinders should be good too. I get the ranging done, hitting spots and building a mental map of the area. Once that's done, I send out some challenge calls, some howls some pup yips... every few minutes or so. Mostly because I'm bored.

After about 45 minutes to an hour, I see two coyotes trotting down the road 10 yards apart. About 400 yards away and closing. Scrawny dogs, not that good looking... Movement closer... at the water only 60 yards away is a bigger better looking coyote. I aim at the farthest dog, with the scope set to about 10 power. I'm full on pumped and holding steady is difficult. I hold my breath and the reticle freezes on the farthest dog.

I hold with the crosshairs right at the top of the dog's head and increase pressure on the trigger. The rifle bucks but I don't even hear the shot. The bullet entered the dog's head just above the nose and exits the dog's rump. It dropped dead instantly, slamming into the dirt like a plane crash.

As quickly as I can I work the bolt and chamber the next round. The scope comes back down and I look for the next dog which has spun around and his paws are digging for traction in the loose soil. The bullet hits him in the hip and exits the opposite shoulder. He drops dead within just feet of the first coyote.

I work the bolt again, chambering my last shot. I can't see the dog that was by the water. It's gone. Adjusting the scope for a wider field of view I open both eyes and wait. It was only a few seconds before the third coyote was spotted tearing up the dirt road. All three dogs were were using the same side of the dirt road so I laid the crosshairs along that track ahead of the running dog and at the right instant I pull the trigger. The bullet and the dog intersect... actually the bullet intersects the dog right through the back of the head and it tumbles twice end over end.

I lower the rifle and I can't believe it. There are echoes of the shots still rolling but I don't know what's louder, because my heart is pounding away like the drummer from Def Leopard. All three dogs are within 10 feet of each other 350 yards away dust settling around them.

Freaking amazing. This has to have been my best shooting - ever. The 1500 yard shot was just once. And I'll admit it that was luck. This was repeated, three times, in the heat of it, on moving targets. I've never shot that good... and coyotes are not big dogs. Wolves are big... Coyotes are small. Booyaah!

Anyways, this area is tapped out now. The gunshots would have sent anything else around here running for cover or is going to keep in cover. I pick up and move on to my next location. I sit down at the military crest of a grassy hill overlooking a field full of rabbit holes and prairie dog mounds. At this point, the sun is straight up and it's getting hot. After some time of calling and waiting, nothing. So I figure I'll just bust a couple prairie dogs or something. After some time of scanning through my binos, I switch to my scope which has a higher magnification. I slowly scan the field below me. Then I see something. An ear twitched. I crank my scope up to 12 power and adjust my shooting position. 150 yards or so I can just see the ears sticking up and the very top of the head. I need the dog to stand up. So I so change up the come to dinner calls (rabbit distress) to some puppy yips. Through the grass, I can see the ears twitch and kinda rotate a little, but the dog doesn't get up. I make an elk bugle call... nothing. I go through all the calls I have, and this thing just isn't interested. Or maybe this coyote is just deaf. I raise up to one knee to get a better angle for a shot, but I don't take it. I can still only just make out ears. Remembering the 4 basic firearm rules, knowing your target, I pass on the shot. I need this critter to stand. So I just yell. “Hey you, come here! Stand up so I can shoot you!” What do you know... it stands. Not a coyote. Doe antelope. I would have busted a freaking 'Lope. Weapon on safe... I'm thirsty and too damn hot anymore. Time to call it a day.

It is amazing the devastation that the 7MM Rem Mag can deliver. The trauma and tissue damage was extreme. There was a huge ammount of “blood shot” meat. This is tissue damage due to hydrostatic shock. Basically turned muscle tissue into pudding.

Back at home, I've got the Wild Hogs DVD, some ice cold beverage and an AC unit. It was a good day.

8-29-07:  Okay guys, I need a little hand. A fellow I work with... we shall call him “Coy”... I know a lot of guys out there have a talent with Photoshop. I don't. Not so much. Here is the photo of “Coy” that his wife gave us. Let's call this contest “Awkward Situations”. Please put “Coy” in awkward or otherwise humorous situations.  That is a Ruger .44 Magnum on his hip and evidently he never takes it off.  Let's have a little Coyathon... I'll post them as they come in.

Chevy Avalanche: I used to think these trucks were just about the ugliest things on the planet, well, this side of a Pontiac Aztec. Revolting style that maybe, perhaps in some weird way looked good on paper as a sketch in black and white. In the metal, the design failed cosmetically. What it could do practically was a lot more interesting. Considering that Ford, in the infinite void of their wisdom, killed off the full sized Bronco... the SUV/Pickup truck has left is with nothing but 4 door king cab pickups. The big cabbed trucks are very popular around here... huge following. And I was/am tempted by the shear expansive range of capabilities to haul ass and gear. But then I also looked at the new Avalanche. Interesting. Not as mongloid looking as the Honda Truck'ute... but still strange looking. Strange enough to be different but not enough so as to stand out in a crowd as The Odd One. Gone is the stupid and useless body cladding around the lower half of the truck. The new Avalanche actually looks pretty good when parked next to an old one. This would be a pretty good HordeRaider. The only thing the factory truck needs is a 4 inch lift and bigger tires... because seriously, Chevy... it looks stupid sitting on such small tires. I think my Contour's tires are the same size. The engine options for various V-8 engines are disappointed but the base V-8 looks like it would service well enough... but it would also have to have the four wheel drive option. Then it would make for a decent HordeRaider.

One other vehicle that I'm liking is the 4 door Nissan Frontier. Smaller than the Avalanche but unquestionably cooler without the stigma of the prior Avalanche. Of course there is the full sized Nissan Titan which came out of the gate awesome from the start. Awesome, but expensive like crazy. If I had enough cash on hand, I'd buy one of those...

Or the new Toyota Tundra which finally actually looks like what a real truck is supposed to look like. Very nice inside... but I'm not sure if they are actually worth the Toyota premium.

But then there is the matter of my original HordeRaider... Brutus. My 84 Full Sized Bronco. Really, if I had my druthers... even if Brutus is ancient and run down, I'd rather rebuild Brutus to an all new glory than get anything else. And I think that's what I'm going to do. But this a seriously major rebuild here. Brutus needs a new engine. The current motor is a hog, without the actually return of power... To get an efficient engine is going to require a new transmission and wiring harness. So on one hand, I might as well just buy a new rig... but if I did it would never have the character that the full sized Broncos had. Newer Broncos didn't have the style the older ones had. The 84 body style was always my favorite.

Muzzle Loading Guns: My bro asked me about a certain muzzle loading rifle. They are not bad at all as a starter gun, but you will quickly want an upgraded gun. For the price they are decent shooters. But for not much more you could get a Thompson Center Omega with a blued barrel and a synthetic stock. We retail them all day long for only $299. It will blow anything else by Traditions or CVA out of the water. For a bit more you can get a Stainless version, or one with a laminated wood stock... or camo or a thumbhole. Then there is the new Triumph which looks to be a great rifle, but I hate the trigger mechanism. We've got them too. It looks cool, feels pretty good... but I'd rather have an Omega. Any day. I've loving the Encore, but would happily trade it up for a Pro-Hunter. The Pro-Hunters are just single shot perfection. I wish TC would make their Icon rifle in other calibers like 7MM Rem Mag, .270, .25-06, .300 RUM.... Maybe some day. Muzzle loading is growing in popularity... hunting with them is even more popular too thanks to advances in powders and bullets. Really the only advantage a general season rifle shooter has over the muzzle loader is the speed of the follow up shot. With a rifle, this varies, with a black powder gun, there is no follow up shot. Thompson Center is THE way to go for muzzle loaders. CVA, Traditions – you can have them. I'll take TC every time... and I'd put the cheapest Omega against the best CVA any day. Then there is Knight, which is second place to TC, but still much better than CVA or anything else. Dollar for dollar, I'd put a TC against a Knight too.

8-28-07:  Brảithreachas”: It means "Brotherhood rather than strife and competition."  It is a celtic word.  I think this is fitting the Second Amendment community.  We are so freaking hostile to each other all the time. You go to any given gun forum and people are always ripping on each other... flat out nasty... and for what? Because one guy has a detail about something wrong? One guy likes AR-15's more than AK-47's? Or another guy likes Savage more than Remington so he's a big fat idiot?  Where does that get us?  Forums that don't have any outward hostility like that probably has a team of Moderators that spend many many hours each day keeping that crap in check.  Just remember “braithreaches”...  We should all be brothers in our brotherhood of arms and outdoors.  We should all work together to help protect and enjoy our fragile rights.

Hordeman Carl is one Magnificent Bastard. In one day he acquired two highly prized weapons. A SIG 556 Carbine and a SIG P225 pistol. I've been wanting a P225 for some time and I'm just waiting for the right one to show up at the right time. The 556 is everything the AR-15 should be. Too bad the Army doesn't think so. Well, Carl deserves it... Works hard, genuine good guy, just got a good promotion... Congrats on the weapons!

We had a little display of Desert Power Saturday night. A couple guys who had never fired a gun before walked away having fired pretty much all of them. .22 pistols and rifles, 9mm's, .45's, an AK and an AR-15, 20 and 12 gauges. Nothing technical, just a lot of blasting melons apart. Busting some unopened coke cans. Busting caps.... freaking awesome time. The Kimber Tac Custom II ran perfect... The AK and Smith 1911SC ran perfect.... pretty much none of our guns showed any problems save my Marine Magnum. Reason that one had some issues was because if this cheapass WalMart special ammo that was given to me as a gift. They would feed and fire just fine, but then they wouldn't want to eject sometimes and this would lock up the action. The cheap shells use aluminum bases and these would bind up after the firing pressures stretched them. The shotgun had run perfectly before with some other shells including my BlackCloud shells. The BlackCloud munitions were fantastic. A lot more push from those heavy 3” shells... A much bigger payload of BB shot and Federals “FlightStopper” pellets. I know that 9 Pellet 00 Buck is the choice of LEOs all over the place... but I'm not so sure that 00 Buck actually makes that great of a Home Defense load. I've been shooting a lot of different shells over the last year and I think BB Shot offers the best balance of inner structure safety and on target devastation. And of all the BB Shot loads... the BlackCloud load is the most scary brutal load this side of a full house 3 1/2” load... And 3” shells buck a heck of a lot less than 3 1/2” shells do.

Coming away from the evening's shoot, I have a much deeper appreciation for the 20 gauge, my AK, and just getting guys out to do some blasting. The Benelli Legacy 20 gauge was a hell of a lot of fun. I liked it better than a certain Browning Gold Hunter 20 that I recently shot. I had one problem with it though... Shooting at clays, I always missed the first, and hit with the second shot. Something about the way the recoil putting me in a better position. It was a matter of fit. While I liked the Legacy 20 a lot, it didn't fit me right.

One of us had brought out a Para .45... While the Para was nice, and decked out with a sweet Lazermax laser guide rod. The Para went south... deep south. The hammer started following the slide back forward. This could have resulted in a runaway gun... basically going full auto. I've seen this a couple times before and it happened to me at Ft. Benning. But luckily it didn't happen this time... this time it only resulted in the gun failing to fire altogether. This is just one of the reasons I'm not a fan of Paras... among other things. I'm not against Paras... I'm just going to buy one myself and I'm not going to recommend them when there are better options for the same price. This isn't a matter of getting what you pay for, because they are kind of spendy... this is more of a matter of not getting everything you pay for. I kinda liked Paras back when they were basically a kit... but I've just not seen any actual guns that they've liked. The LDA trigger system is just flat out retarded and their regular old double stacked frames feel like your holding a section of plumbing. Add to this a long history of functional failures... no thanks. I'll spend my money on something else. Considering that Canadians can't even own handguns, what do they know about making them? Well, yes, I know they can own them... they just can keep them and pack them... more like the UK than the US in that regard. Buying a gun in Canada is a process more like adopting a child than buying a tool. I don't want to go through it all. Let's just say that there are other reasons for Canadians to become Americans than just their fucked up health care system. I don't mean to bag on Canada... they have a lot of good points. But guns and socialized health care are not some of those good points.

Speaking of getting some guys out to do some blasting – Saturday, September 15th, at the Buckskin Hills Range we are having an Open House. I'll be there just about all bloody day. Also that night our local IDPA group is going to be having a Night Shoot there at the same location. All of The Horde is invited out to come do some shooting. So you guys in Greece, the UK, Spain, Japan, New Zealand, Netherlands, South Africa... you guys are Officially Invited too. If you can make it out, I'll buy you dinner. Shoot durning the day, dinner, then the night shoot. All of the American Horde you have a lot less distance travel... I'll get you a soda. Let me tell you real quick how to get to the range. Go to Vernal, Utah. Take Vernal Avenue north from Main Street and turn right (heading east) on 1500 North. Follow this road all the way past all the residentials, past the farms, down the hill, up the hill, past the city dump for another ½ mile maybe and you will see the turn off, off to the left. There it is. Bring your folding chairs, sun shades, ice chests full of (nonalcoholic) cold ones... a picnic lunch, and a crap load of ammo for your guns. We have real good pistol and carbine bays surrounded by 15 foot earthen berms... and we have 1000 yards worth of rifle range. I'm not exactly sure of the degree of completion the range is going to have at that time... but we are going to have good time regardless.

Dang it! I didn't have the chance to zero my Remmy with the new scope! Freak I even picked up a fresh box of my beloved 162 grain Hornady BTSP loads. I was thinking about switching over to the 154 grain SST load, which would be a bit better for Coyotes, Antelopes, and other assorted Deep Desert. But then I figured that my beloved 162 grain loads will kill those unlucky creatures just as dead but will also kill bigger critters like Mule Deer, Elk, and Bear. I was also thinking about trying out this new Federal Fusion stuff... but I figure I'll just stick with what I know works great in my rifle and what I have confidence in for everything I will ever want to do with it.

Remember when I said that I was wanting a .338 Federal chambered Kimber Montana? I think I've changed my mind on that. Kimber has chambered their Montana rifle in another caliber that I have a lot of interest in. .325WSM. For those that don't know what .325WSM is, it is simply the .300WSM cartridge with a big fat 8MM slug instead of a .30 caliber. 220 grain slugs instead of 180 grains. I like bigger heavier slugs for hunting purposes. Lighter slugs have better external ballistics, but when it comes to terminal ballistics the bigger, fatter, heavier slugs are superior. This is the same difference between 9MM and .45 ACP. I also prefer bullets that are heavier for their caliber in general. For some purposes I like lighter bullets. For example military uses. The .308 cartridge is less ideal, but shrink the caliber to 7MM and drop the weight to 154 and you have a fantastic warfighting round. Back to the .325WSM... I've seen the accuracy results of this round in the Browning A-Bolt II Stainless Stalker. It is very impressive. While I'm not that big of a fan of the Browning rifles, they do have features that I like. I like the short bolt throws and I like the palm swells they have in the grips area. Why I'm not a fan of the Browning rifles, I really can't say. I just prefer the Remington and Pre-64 Winchester actions as used by Kimber.

Another caliber that I am having a hard time not falling in love with... I can't believe I am even going to say this... but .375 Ruger. Ruger is one American Gun company that I just have a hard time getting behind. I like their Single Six revolvers, New Vaqueros, Blackhawks, SP101 and GP100's... and their Number 1 falling block rifles... but not much else. I kinda like the Ruger Frontier rifle, and their Hawkeye rifle... even if it is a rip off of Remington's Model 7. Oh, it isn't? Since when did Ruger cut their forearm checkering all around just reversing the pattern from Remington's? Yeah, that's real original. Great idea there. Seems like Ruger's best guns are remakes of others, the Peacemaker and the Luger... Where is the innovation Ruger? As far as their name branded cartridges go, I think .204 is just stupid. But their .375 Ruger is a cool cartridge. A .375 H&H squished into a handy lighter rifle. What's not to like about that? That has “bear gun” written all over it.

This new .17 Fireball cartridge. As a rifle cartridge it is lacking... But as a pistol cartridge, that's when it becomes interesting. We just need a pistol for it. Kind of like a Buckmark on steroids. Or better yet, like a Broomhandled Mauser but one that actually worked reliably and had some accuracy with it. That would be awesome.

Speaking of that old Mauser pistol... Taurus is big on making old designs again... They need to make the Broomhandled Mauser and chamber it in a five different calibers. 9MM, .357Sig, .40, .45, and 7.62X25. (and maybe .17 Fireball) Of course offering it in different barrel lengths. And offer a 16” barreled version with a fixed shoulder stock. I think I could handle buying one of those like that. With a flash suppressor and a scope too. Oh yeah. I'd be all over that. Maybe. Just saying.

You guys just don't know how pumped I am to getting back at coyote hunting. I had a blast with it last winter and spring... but then the coyote bounty ended and I'm just waiting to see where the bounty picks up again. Hopefully up in Daggett County again. I wish Uintah County would do it too, but the County guys in Uintah are just a bunch of freaking idiots. I say idiots because the ranchers and farmers around here have a hard time with these wild dogs killing young sheep and calves... and of course the deer and antelope population suffers. You know it's very bad when people start having problems with them coming too close to homes and kids. I was just informed earlier today that my beloved sister in law has so many out her way that they are scaring her and her kids. I'll be damned if I'm going to let one of them diseased flea-ridden vermin get near my beloved nephews. So this week I'll be killing as many of them out there way as I can. I think I'll take my 7MM and my .30-30, a pair of carbon-fiber arrow shaft shooting sticks, a Nikon laser 800, and a good electronic predator call. Hand and Mouth type calls are great, but I like the electronics because you can concentrate on glassing and your point of aim rather than juggling your calls. Sure the hand and mouth calls you have better control over the sound, but I think unless you have a guy to call for you, your better off using an electronic. The other thing I like about electronics is that you can use a remote version so the dogs can be coming towards your call and not right at you directly. A little miss direction can go a long way. If they are concentrating on one spot and you are in another, you have the advantage.

My camo will be Kings Outdoor's Desert Shadow. I don't know about this MossyOak Brush pattern that is so popular out here. At a distance that pattern just washes out looks like your wearing light grey. That's not good enough. When you see the guys out there in the sagebrush and they stand out like a soar thumb... that's an indication that maybe your camo selection isn't quite right for your area of operation. Desert Shadow is the shizznit for the Uintah Basin... so that's how I roll. Your area might be different, probably is, so other patterns might work better for you. That's the key right there... you gotta have what works for the area you hunt. Forget name brand. I know RealTree AP is the hot seller right now, but if your area doesn't match – it is less effective camo. AP might be perfectly awesome for Georgia woodlands where Bill Jordan of RealTree lives. But what about in Virginia's Shenandoah Valley? What about in the grasslands of eastern Colorado? The cornfields in Wisconsin? I know the military patterns are popular too... but that stuff is a general pattern trying to work in all those areas and it ends up being useful mostly none of it. If you are hunting, get hunter's camo. If you want to look uniform while standing in formation, then by all means use that military camo. If you are hunting coyotes in my areas... again... feel free to use that military camo.

Speaking of camo. For predator hunting you gotta camo up your gun too. You can get the camo tape or cloths to wrap your gun in... don't over do it. The best gunflage I've seen involved camo tape wrap with strips of different earth-tone burlap for a gun-gillie effect. It was awesome. You couldn't tell it was a gun save for the glass in the objective lens. It looked like some sort of long snouted hedgehog cyclops.

Coyote hunting is awesome... just an awesome hunting experience. Any predator hunting is. Predators are smarter and sneakier than plant-eaters. Dogs learn fast and with so many duffers out there educating these dogs, hunting them is even more of a challenge. The fact that you can get paid for it, and the fact that you are actually doing a good service to others makes it even more worthwhile and a worthy creature to hunt.

The other thing I like about coyote hunting is that it teaches you to be a better ambush predator yourself... better preparation for a Red Dawn scenario. Just in case.

When you hunt coyotes, you need enough gun. A wounded dog will take off and run and you will not see him again. .17HMR, .204... these puss rounds are just not enough gun to reliably knock down a decent sized dog. I recommend .22-250 or .243 or more. You can also use your turkey gun for the task. 3½” Mags loaded with your given turkey load and your turkey choke will do just fine on coyotes if you can call them in close enough. Coyotes will come in close enough if you do your due diligence on your set up, calls, and field craft. You can get those dogs to just about crawl into your lap. I had one come to within 3 feet. Three Feet! I used my CZ P-01 instead of wasting a rifle cartridge.

I tell you what... if some of The Horde come out for the September 15th event I spoke of earlier... maybe we can get to do some coyote hunting too.

8-25-07:  Regarding the blown up Kel-Tec: Guys, this is called a “KB”. That's short for “Kaboom”. This isn't a gun issue... I've seen KB's in just about every kinda of gun in common use. I've seen 1911's, Glocks (lots of Glocks) Smith & Wesson .38's, Walther PPK's... the one thing I've learned about KB's is that it is never a gun issue. The problem is always an ammo issue unless the weapon was seriously screwed up. And if that was the case there would have been prior warning signs. What happens is for some reason the cartridge detonates in the chamber. There are a couple causes for this... improperly made reloads is the obvious one. With factory ammo, there could have been something wrong with the load. A magnum primer or an increased charge could do it. But in an auto pistol the leading cause is pushback. Pushback is a serious condition that might not give you any warning sign. It happens when recoil forces shake the bullet loose one of the cartridges in the magazine... then when that cartridge is picked up by the slide and the slide pushes the cartridge forward into the chamber, the bullet gets pushed back into the cartridge. This increases the internal pressures in the cartridge dramatically and can feel like a “hot load”. If it's too hot, it will just detonate in the chamber. Detonations are different from burns... the gunpowder in your cartridges burns, different powders burn at different rates, but all burn. Under increased pressure there is no time for the bullet to travel down the barrel and thus we get the dreaded KB.

If you want to reduce your risk of having a KB, it's pretty simple. First, keep your gun in good working order, clean and happy. Keep your ammo clean and inspect it for corrosion and bullet set backs. All the cartridges should be the same length. If you have a scale, all the cartridges should be very close to the same weight... if you notice one that is heavier or lighter than all the others, pull the bullet out, dump the powder and either reload it or discard it... but don't shoot it. If the bullet is sitting deeper in the cartridge, same thing. The case will have to be resized and the bullet reseated and crimped. Failure to discard questionable ammo is asking for trouble.

Looking for blame for a KB... There is none. It's not the gun maker's fault. Gun makers can not control your choice of ammunition. It's not even the ammo maker's fault. Because all the ammo makers use stringent quality control to prevent a double charge... and they all load the ammo in acceptable manner... but they cant control how many times a cartridge might get chambered before firing. I've had many rounds loaded and unloaded in my guns... Anyone that packs a gun for a living does this. So check your rounds. If something is suspicious, discard it. Even if it is high dollar quality JHP ammo. Also, if your carry ammo is over two years old it is time to replace it with new ammo. Take your old ammo and use it next time you practice.

You should cycle your carry mags too. Have some mags you keep loaded, and others you keep unloaded. You can cycle them every few month, but no more than 6. This will keep your springs in shape longer. But if in doubt, just replace your mag springs. Range guns are one thing... but your defensive guns have got to be in top shape. If you can't handle keeping your auto in top shape, then do yourself a favor and sell it and buy a good revolver.

BEST GUNFIGHTS IN THE MOVIES: Still reviewing some The Horde's suggestions... the last ones are going to be reviewed very soon.

I submitted my next article to CCM. I had to do my new lightweight commander... I just geek out about it every time I touch it. I love this gun. It only took me about 30 minutes to crank out a 2500 word review. I usually keep my reviews to around 2000 words to leave room for photos and stuff... but I just let it roll on this one. Sorry guys... I couldn't help it!

New Scope for Remmy: I've ditched the Nikon BDC scope and I've mounted a silver finished Leupold VX II 4-12 unit on my stainless Remington 700. The scope selection was one I had already made, but the scope itself kind of fell into to my lap. The leading factor in the Leupold choice was a simple matter of eye relief. Now the Nikon is a great scope, and I love it... but during recoil the ocular lens comes to within a half inch of giving me some scope bite. I've never been kissed by it yet, but I would just like more eye relief. If I was to change shooting positions while tucked in, such as aiming up a mountain or something... then I could get hit. It's not that the 7MM Rem Mag has a ton of recoil, but it does have a good push to it. Now with the Leupold on it, I actually have to pull back a little more on the stock to get the eye relief so there is no dark ring around it... and the lens is well away from eye. I like this set up. So eye relief is the #1 reason. The #2 reason is that the additional magnification and greater clarity of the VX II is going to come in handy when I'm busting coyotes beyond 400 yards. That and the silver finished scope just looks badass. The new VX II scopes are just the old VX III scopes, so it is a great mid level scope. Really I can't even see the difference between a II and a III, so I'm not that worried and the II still has to meet the same recoil tolerances as the III. The only thing I wish this one had was the Boone & Crockett reticle... but I can live with the fine duplex that I have now. No problem.

8-23-07:  A worrisome email: I bought a P3AT and after shooting about 30 rounds thru it it exploded ( yes, exploded ) in my hand. I thought I had blown my finger off.

When I took it back to the dealer I bought it from, they told me " I got what I paid for."

I don't think Kel Tec would be happy to hear that! In any case, I am going to send them an email and send the gun back. Your article has concerned me. I have take it to another

dealer who said the ammo I bought was not re-loads ( I thought it might have been ) He indicated he had never seen anything like this with a Kel Tec.

I was going to be satisfied with getting a replacement, but now I am worried. What do you think? Judy

This is an email that I have dealt with offline with Judy, but I wanted to post it. She will keep me posted once the situation has been resolved. Basically factory loaded ammo and the gun KB's on her. KB's can occur in any gun running any ammunition. All it takes is a round that has been improperly loaded at the factory for some reason. This isn't something I'd blame Kel-Tec for but I would like to see them take care of Judy. What really chaps my hide about this is that the dealer responded with such a flippant remark. The dealer should have taken the gun, and contacted Kel-Tec for her, on her behalf. No, there is no law requiring a dealer go the extra mile... but let's put it this way... I'm going to take care of my customer. That's just the only way I do business here. I'm tired of hearing so many freaking stories about bad dealers. Guys, if your dealer is a shady jackass – find someone else. Even if you have to go to another city – find someone else. Simple as that. If the guys are jackholes, don't do business with that. So many knuckleheads are still in business only because they are the only gunshop in town. That's not a good enough reason to remain in business in this day and age.

I was talking to my bro's the other day and they mentioned that a guy in their unit got reprimanded because he quoted Remember, this is the unit with the commanding officer that took away all pocketknives. I said a few things that were harsh regarding leadership there. I admit that. I have huge respect for everyone in Uniform and I have always respected good Officers. But if I'm calling you out, you probably need to shelve the attitude and check your shit. Evidently my harsh opinions have been proven true.

8-22-07:  Email from one of The Horde: “Yo Og! I don't know if you've seen it or not, but David Codrea over at the war on guns blog is putting forward a counter protest against the Brady gang's August 28th nationwide protest. He's proposing that we all buy a box of ammo from our local gun dealers... That'd be you! Perhaps you may want to support the effort in your store and one you blog... -G Snazzy idea. I like it. Kind of an adhoc Ammo Day. Let's do it. August 28th it is.

Top Gear is now on BBC America on Monday evenings. This is pretty cool as Top Gear is a World Wide favorite but in the US it is virtually unheard of. Well, I watched for a few and thought that maybe my Pops would like to watch it too out there in Virginia. So I called him up and sure enough, he was unaware of it. So while he was tuning in, he mentioned that he would offer a Kia Rondo for the Contour. And you guys know my distaste for the Rondo. Of course all my dislike for the vehicle comes from one of the most retarded advertising campaigns ever conceived. I declined that offer regardless... I have to live on principle. Then he threated to park one in my driveway, throw the keys at me and run away. This would perhaps be the most annoying thing he could do. Because not only would I be stuck with this lump of Korean crap in my driveway, but then I'd have to have it towed to a crusher. Maybe I'd trade it in for something or sell it... but I sure has hell wouldn't sit in the dang thing.

The show Top Gear is a branch of the magazine. I recommend both as they are about as entertaining as car shows/rags can get and the US version called “Fifth Gear” isn't nearly as good. Jeremy Clarkson will even make digs at the US version... for example he was reviewing one sports car and made the smug comment “Now lets see what happens when you shift it from fifth gear, into top gear.” And then of course he really got on the gas... showing off. The original Brit version is more creative and the Fifth Gear guys just seem to me to be playing catch up. One of the problems Fifth Gear has is in Personalities. The hosts the show cast are just no where near as interesting as the Top Gear guys. The Fifth Gear guys are about as dull as a bowl of oatmeal. The downside to Top Gear is that they have to degrade the USA as much as possible. In one of the two episodes they showed on the 20th, James May and Jeremy Clarkson were trying to insult a Cadillac CTS. James could only come up with how Saab-like it was... and Jeremy's best crack was that the suspension was mushy. Of course neither one of them were actually driving the car... and neither one of them mentioned that being Saab-like was actually a bad thing. I like Saabs, I've had one briefly (two and a half hours before I destroyed it) and thought it was very nice. The Cadillac is build on a Saab platform... so what? Like this is a new thing? I could begin to count all the cars out there based on Opels... and I never hear anything bad about it. I like the new Caddies... the CTS is a fantastic car. I like it a great deal more than just about anything else in its class... save the BMW and Audi equivalents. Most of the time in the CTS, the three Top Gears were just stuck in traffic and they never had the chance to really “drive” the car. Which is too bad. It's also funny that when they make comparisons, they are always putting it up against cars that cost more than twice as much. Apples and Oranges comparisons are required if you are going to try to make the CTS look bad. I'm not even going to get into the Corvette Z-06 review... but sure, Jeremy... the Ferrari is the better all round sports car. You win that point. But remember it is more than a hundred thousand pounds more the Z-06 and because of that little detail, you've missed the point entirely.

Field and Stream's editor David E. Petzal linked to the .50 cal video where Willy gets hit in the head by an unfortunate bounce. Of course no one every gives credit to where the video came from. Oh, and Willy is doing just fine. He laughs about it now... and his jaw is okay now too... welt is gone. Back to normal life. Oh, and he has dumped the cheap African surplus and has fresh new ammo for it so this wont happen again.

Looks like MadOgre has influenced yet another publication. Guns & Ammo's Richard Venola has said that G&A is going to take a new direction in the way they write... “in the same style as they would use if talking informally to their friends and fellow shooters.” Hmmm that sounds familiar doesn't it? Check my About page that I've had up for what, 6 years? This guy also plagiarized something else I've said many time... but I'll let you guys find that one. I know I've been plagiarized before... many times... but not on the first editorial page. Maybe G&A should send me a payment... then Richard puts out an invitation for writers to submit samples. Hey, you guys have been sampling my work long enough. Let me know when you want one of my reviews. My fees are very reasonable.

I've been thinking about changing my scope setups on my .30-30 and my 7MM. I think that Nikon 3-9 BDC would work out better on the Marlin and something with a bit more magnification for the 7MM since it gets to shoot at things much farther away. But I'm torn here... the Nikon is tuned so well on that Remington that I don't want to jinx it. The coyote season is coming up on us pretty soon as I don't want to delay getting back into harvesting that bounty. I know the scope I want... if I had my choice it would be a stainless finished Leupold 4.5-14 B&C scope. That is a spendy bit of optics. But well worth it. I might be willing to trade a pistol off for one... maybe.

8-19-07:  What it's like in the desert. The Uintah Basin spans north-eastern Utah, into western Colorado, and up into the south western part of Wyoming. Most of this area is just flat out desert territory, spotted with some green areas and some water holes. History out here begins in the late 1800's with an occasional blip earlier. We had some Spanish monk wander through... some native Americans we don't know much about painted on some rocks here and there. But it was the late 1800's when things really jazzed up. The Outlaws of Wild West fame roamed around out here. Other than that, there is little use for anything out here. This just isn't fly over country... this is fly over as fast as you can country. Then all the sudden we oil, natural gas, phosphates, and some odd mineral called Gilsonite. The energy crisis around the nation has created a typical western style boom town. Before energy and mineral, we had Cows and Sheep. Now we have Roughnecks and Rodeos. Some folks found some dinosaur bones and we have some nice paleo-stuff. We are in what is the area's second energy boom. This has brought out all the major players in the Oil Business and has made some lucky guys very wealthy. Guys that owned some land with mineral rights, guys with lots of trucks, or guys that held on since the last boom went bust and are now buying Escalades and Navigators. Interesting place, the Uintah Basin. There is an overwhelming sense of unease now... in everyone. A tangible thing. We all know that if a Democrat wins the Oval Office while they hold the House and Senate, then our boom is over. This whole area will be thrown into a major depression. The Good Times as we know it now will be over. Not just economically for the residents here, but for our rights and identity as Free Americans nation wide... but especially here locally. The Libs will shut down energy resource development out here in a heart beat. The spotted-horned-gecko or some something will be found near an oil well and that will end it for everyone. We have enough problems with the black-footed ferrets out here. The orders to shut everything down will come from two thousand miles east, from people who have never even seen this place.

Change what they will... one thing will remain constant. The desert. There is something pure about the desert. It doesn't lie to you... it doesn't make any promises... but it can embrace you. It can sing to you. It can comfort you. It can cleans you. And if you disrespect it, it can kill you. Mummify you in a matter of days, or it will scatter your corpse so completely that within a week nothing will be left but an occasional sun-bleached bone. There is life out in the desert... rodents and insects are everywhere. Deer, antelope, fox, bobcat, cougar, and one in particular... Coyote.

To the Indians, coyotes are almost sacred. Coyote, the spirit, is known as a trickster. The animal is the same way. Hunting him is challenge. It's the only hunt around here that remains challenging. The only hunt around here worth while. The dogs are educate about hunters and what they do, so every year they are harder to bag. When you go out into the desert, you will notice how quiet it is. No noise at all. Then the wind will pick up... maybe you will hear the call of a crow. As you adjust to the surroundings you will hear squeaks and chirps from the prairie dogs and rabbits... you will notice their tracks... all the sudden the once brown and dead desert is brimming with life. You notice the colors... the reds and yellows. Depending on where you are out here the desert will kick up dust clouds as you walk and paint you feet yellow or red almost up to your knees. Shooting becomes a challenge because everything is always a hell of a lot farther away out here. When you look at your target through your scope, all the sudden it's almost invisible because of heat waves. But making those hits are rewarding. Knowing where your target is and how far it is becomes more critical than anything else.

My toenail fell off. Well, not so much fell as I had to pull it out. Something big and heavy and metal fell on my right foot and crushed my big toe. The blood welled up under the toenail, separating the nail from the quick under the nail, but it remained sealed all around. Lots of pressure and pain. So I had to lance it. Tons of fluid. I thought the nail might survive, but no. It didn't. It started to pull up on one side. Snagging on socks and stuff. So I just sat down with a pair of pliers and pulled it the rest of the way off. Not pleasant. I can see why this would be an effective means of torture. I hope I never have to do that again.

Dodge Durango. I really seriously and truly need a larger vehicle. My little Contour SE as great as it is... just doesn't work anymore. I can't take all my boys anymore, let alone all my boys and a new girl when she gets here. I'm thinking about a Dodge Durango... an older first gen body style unit. My Contour plus 4 grand will get me into a very nice one... a 2001 unit that has never gone off pavement. It books at 9 grand, so this would be a deal well in my favor. Only problem is that I am well short of 4 grand but this is the closest I can to a workable deal. I guess I just need to look at other options. Which is too bad because the only vehicle that meets all my requirements is a Durango. Well, and a Toyota Land Cruiser, but they are a bit more spendy. No, I don't want to finance anything... I don't want another car payment. So this is my conundrum. If anyone out there spots a rig of this type for an insanely low price or if someone who has one is looking for an economical small car – give me the heads up. I need something bigger... any serious and reasonable offer will be considered. No '82 crown vics with 435,000 miles and no bumper kind of offers. Maybe a recent police package vic, Grand Cherokee, Pathfinder, Expedition, Land Cruiser or 4Runner... you know... something along those lines. I don't care if it is ugly... just as long as it is mechanically sound. The Contour runs like a top and can give me 33 MPG with its V-6 and 5 speed... awesome little car. It's just that its little.

I know my Dad is always looking for small eco-cars with some zip to them... tell ya what, Pops... Find a suitable rig for me and I'll trade'ja for my 'Tour.... and I'll even throw in the Valentine One that I know you want.  Okay, I know that's teasing... You can't have one in Virginia.  Oops. 

8-16-07:  I think there needs to be a major legal movement in this country - in every state - to roll back all gun laws. Every single gun law on the books... federal and local. Because the 2nd says Shall Not Be Infringed... I say the unyielding torrent of "reasonable" restrictions is a huge freaking infringement.

Driving might be a privilege, and thus can be restricted by law... but damn it... keeping and bearing arms is a bloody RIGHT just like Free Speech!

Keeping and bearing does not mean concealed carry cards, inside the waist band holsters or filling out federal forms and calling in background checks. You should be able to buy a gun and give it to a friend or family member for a birthday present or just because you want to see them well armed. Yet these things are technically illegal. I'm tired of this situation. All of us are tired of this situation. I'm wanting to see the NRA-ILA start to earn their donations. I'm tired of the NRA standing by and watching our gun rights slowly ebb away in a Terry Shivo style death. We have so little time left...

Here's the deal... here is what's going to happen. If a Democrat wins the Whitehouse, we are in serious trouble. Here is what they will do. They will immediately start work on a fresh assault weapons ban. This new ban will target everything that holds more than 2 rounds. It will also target anything that is powerful, or scoped, or small, or large... basically everything save muzzle loaders. That's what they are going to try to do anyways. Regardless of that working or not... the Dems are going to start taxing ammunition. Like Cigarettes. We'll probably be looking at 5 to 10 bucks a box for any ammunition, any caliber. Remember the days of 1.50 for a box of 50 rounds of .22? Gone. Ten bucks for 50 rounds of 9mm? Long gone. It's coming... you just watch. If the dems can't take our guns, they will take our ammo. For the rest of this year, buy all the guns you every wanted. Seriously... stock up. And then stockpile ammunition like mad. Don't buy boxes of ammo... buy cases. Buy them in 1,000 round lots because the availability is going be limited.

Even if you don't believe the Dems are going to tax ammo like gas or cigarettes... here's one indisputable reason. The base price of ammunition is climbing. Regardless of reason, ammo is going up. Winchester sent out a warning of yet another price hike. This one is going to be a big jump. I'm not going to go into specifics, but our shop responded by investing in over 44 thousand dollars in just ammunition. We got some of every caliber.... better get it now while we can get it. People are not going to be happy at all when the prices on the shelves change yet again. Federal brand just went up. As did Ultramax. Remington did earlier this summer... and now winchester is on the way to climbing. You guys with hungry 30 round mag fed autos are in serious trouble. Oh crap... I got those too. Yup... in trouble. But what can we expect? We live in a world with 4 buck a gallon milk. Why should ammo remain cheap?

Another reason to stock up on ammunition... I've just got a bad feeling about our national security. Our sovereignty. It's in jeopardy.

Why the hell should we have to Press One for English? The US is an English Speaking Nation, damn it! I am not against multiculturalism, as long as it speaks English. We should not have to provide language services for those jackholes who come to America yet refuse to learn to speak the language. I have no sympathy either. I would not be so rude as to think I could go to France, move in, and expect everyone to cater to my whims.

That's one of the biggest problems I have with illegal immigration... no respect for barriers... Language barriers or borders. What the hell is next? Personal space? I'm done with that.

But I'm a reasonable Ogre. I can do a version of for those in the USA but who refuse to speak English. No problem.

Here you go.

My wife got into a TV show and some how dragged me into it too. Ghost Whisperer. Jennifer Love Hewitt stars as an “I see Dead People” chick. You know, she's an odd looking lady. She can look drop dead gorgeous one minute, super cute, the next, then geeky and/or horsey the next. She must weight 56 pounds, yet has 25 pounds worth of jubblies on her chest. Not that I'm complaining... for a skinny girl, she has all the proper bounces in all the right places. Makes the show much more interesting. The writing is real interesting bit to the show. The dialog is light hearted and up beat for some rather serious issues they discuss... and it always seems to have a positive ending. Good messages about morality and what's important. Mostly the importance of love and respect within the family. That's important to me so for that reason I like the show. That and the magnificent jubblies.

I was asked about the Confederate flag in my banner artwork. Really that was the idea of the artist who put it in there... as to him it expressed the vibe. To me, it does that too... and a little more. First off, I'm a Son of the South... so let me explain this as best as I can... The Confederate flag is not a symbol of hate as the damn Yankees would have you believe. It was the flag of the Confederate States of America. This is a part of our shared American History, not just a south eastern regional thing... It's not saying I want to start my own country or that I want to own me some niggers to pick my cotton back at the ol' plantation. That's just ignorant stereotyping to even think that when you see the Dixie flag. The way I see it, it's about Liberty. The War of Northern Aggression was, in a nut shell, about States Rights. About the individual states deciding on how to run their own states... about not letting the Federal Government dictate matters that should be local matters. This is a concept completely alien to so many Americans now. What with George Bush being the controller of everything... the President of the United States is evidently responsible for your local municipal road maintenance and everything else now. This is BS. Local folks should manage local matters. Simple as that. Salt Lake City should not have to bow down to the wishes of Boston or San Francisco. And vice-versa. Or in San Fran's case – vice-vice. Or Washington DC. What does Washington DC know about the Uintah Basin? Those inside the Belt Way have never even been here, yet they have the audacity to tell me what's best for me and my own here? They are going to tell us what to do and when? I don't believe that's right. That's not the way it is supposed to work.

Yes, I believe The South should have won. Many Southern Scholars believe that Slavery would have been ended within a short number of years anyways and The South would have returned to the The Union all on its own. The only difference is that The South would have rejoined on their own terms and not as subjects of The North. I also believe that. The writing was on the wall even then. Of course those of you who get your history strictly from Yankee written books might think otherwise because you guys want to feel justified in your invasion of The South. The War of Northern Aggression seriously damaged The South in ways Yankees don't and never will understand. The economic scars remain there today. I know it's hard to understand, but there is more to The South than just grits and Dollywood... even though those are some of the best things.

If you look up the word imbecile, you will find a photo of this guy. I could rant about this one thing here alone for the next 6 months. But I can't. Just reading this article has given me one of those acute headaches that is only treatable with a dark room, soft volume on a Pink Floyd album, and a bottle of something I shouldn't drink. Aaauugh... right behind my eyeballs. Someone, please, bash this man upside the head with full bottle of Captain Morgan's... please. For the love of GOD!

Kenna is now very busy with her new Royal Duties, but she still wants to take a special photo for The Horde. She is so grateful for all the help. We were going to take picture today, but there is the County Fair this week and she's requested at everything there. I would think I'd had rather not run for the post at all if I was expected to attend so much without being compensated. Sheesh.

1500 Yards. HELL YEAH I DID IT! Coyoted sized target, in this case a suspicious looking light colored rock on a red soil covered mountain as the background. I used the Nikon BDC reticle, estimated another circle... then one more... then held my breath and pulled the trigger. The 168 grain BTSP Hornady bullet reached out there and slammed the target. Holy crap! Ben was there with me and called the hit. He had to, because I couldn't believe it. But the hit was obvious even at that range... Rocks throw out a lot of dust and debris when nailed with a rifle. Even a puny 7MM Rem Mag as some guys seem to classify it.

Nikon needs to put the long range BDC reticle into a 4-12 Monarch. Not that I'd buy it. Nikon are great... but If I want a really good scope, I'll spend my own cash on a Leupold, then drop the extra bucks for a custom ballistic reticle from Leupold's custom shop... which is something I am planning on doing now.

This is kind of a big jump for me... from 800 to 1500 yards is a big difference. I can now hit coyote sized targets from 100 to 1500 yards with my Remmy. Remington 700 Stainless BDL, Nikon Buckmaster BDC scope, using Hornady Custom 168 grain loads. This is a killer combination that I will use through this upcoming coyote bounty season... and then I'll swap that Nikon Buckmaster (which will go on my .30-30) and I'll go with a VX-III 4.5-14 with a custom ballistic reticle for this load.

I had been shooting some PMC ammo earlier... the same I used for the Limbsaver test... man, I'm glad that ammo is all used up now. That stuff is just plain shiat. I don't care if Hornady ammo is a bit spendy compared to Federal or Winchester Super X... it's worth it. And while I like the black box premium loads... I don't think they are worth the extra money. My Remmy prefers the Hornady 168's so that is what I'm going to stick with.

Now, I know this might come off as a bit harsh... but I think it should be perfectly justifiable for a bank fisherman to shoot at Jet Skiers and Water Skiers (and the boats pulling them) with pistol caliber carbines. Getting buzzed once, forgivable... they might not have seen one there fishing... Twice, the boater is a jackass. Three times... you deserve to have new holes all the sudden like. When I say buzzed... I'm talking the boat blasting past within a nerf football toss. This might not sound close, but trust me... it's too freaking close to be socially acceptable with a 25 foot power boat that puts out a wake big enough to swamp small pacific island nations. I was fishing at one of the lakes around here, and this gigantic A-hole with a white boat with red trim buzzed my boys and I no less than 9 times. Whole freaking lake to run around on, and they have to buzz us. Let me tell you, I was just about to catch, I shit you not, a world class Rainbow that was just hanging out right in this nice little pocket of rocks. It would come out and look at my lures, sniff it... I was holding my breath.... then the buzzing scared the rainbow and kicked up so much sediment I couldn't even cast out far enough to reach clear water. I think shooting at the boats should be made perfectly legal... If you don't want to get your boat shot up... stay the hell out of range. Of course, now my range is out to 1500 yards, but that's your problem. Oh man... that rainbow was a freaking HOG... man he was HUGE! Easily the size of a pacific northwest salmon. Easily. Damn, I wanted that Rainbow... and I would have had him if it wasn't for the jackass water skier. Anyways, I understand the fair use of public domain and all that... but these guys were doing this on purpose, knowing full well what they were doing. If I didn't have my boys with me, I'd have been seriously tempted to drive around the lake to the boat ramp and flatten all the tires on his boat trailer. Not that I would have done that... but I'd have been tempted too.

8-11-07:  McKenna is the new Miss Uintah County 2007! I'll post a photo of her as soon as I can. She wants to post a thank you to all who donated and take a special photo for The Horde... I'll get that up as soon as I can.

8-10-07:  Lots to talk about today. A big update since my last post. Lots have gone on. First off, fishing. I'm going to throw all my fishing related posts into a new section. You probably saw that coming. The thing that I learned the other day was that you can jig for crawdads. Enough crawdads makes for a jambalaya or a gumbo, I know this... but I didn't know you could jig for them. The suckers will grab your bait and just not let go. They will hold on even after you pull them out of the water. One of the little bastards didn't die. It didn't get cooked, because it survived everything... even being bounced around in an ice chest amongst ice, full and empty cans, all that and more. It's still alive, it's in a big bowl. It eats dog food. You drop a bit of kibble in there with it... chow time. The boys don't want to kill it... they want to keep it as a pet or something. I know the proclamation states that you can't take live crawdads away from the water. I thought it was dead, didn't mean to... everything else died. And this one, after being in the ice chest for a few minutes stopped moving... It was only after thawing out did it revive. Creepy buggers. For those that don't know what a crawdad is, they are very tasty things that look like little mini lobsters and you eat them by the bunches like shrimp. The wee little beastie will not be set free... I know the reasons for the statutes regarding these things. It will be eaten... or just ground up and thrown in the garden for fertilizer. But I'm just curious as to how long this thing can live.

It gets to the point that when you have a lot of guns, you find that you have all the guns you want. The other day I was thinking that there were only maybe two or three guns that I want that I don't have yet. Which ones those are is not important... but what is, is that such assumptions are usually proven false. Thinking I only wanted a couple more specific guns for my collection... feh. Stupid of me. I admit it. What proved me wrong was when a fellow walked in with a small blue case and said “I want to trade this in”. I said sure, thinking, it's a S&W Sigma and I'll give him 125 for it so I can sell it for 199.99... I figured this would be more than fair. Well he opened the case up and in it was a simple little 1911 Commander with red grips. Then I noticed the Scandium logo that S&W uses to indicate the gun is made crazy light. I picked up up and it was amazing the lack of heft in this .45. Simple black, red wood grips, it looked handsome but nothing extraordinary. In fact, I really don't like the billboard sized lettering on the slide. The gun is a 1911, so I don't need big block lettering “1911” on the side of it. That's as retarded as the guys that buy a Ford Mustang, and then drop the 60 bucks it costs to put “MUSTANG” across the top of the windshield. If you are a car guy enough to care what a Mustang is, you are probably sharp enough to know what they look like. What's next, putting “T-SHIRT” across the chest of your t-shirt? If you like this sort of thing, you are probably the kind of fellow that thinks “Blue's Clues” is dreadfully clever... and you are probably Democrat.

Back to this lightweight Commander. I had to have it. I threw down my dibs on it right then and there. Well I also to take it out and shoot it. It shoots very well... the accuracy is slightly better than average for Commander sized 1911's, the reliability seems to be there too... but what makes this thing so groovy is that loaded with eight rounds in the mag and one more up the pipe, the thing carries on the hip like it isn't even there. My Kimber Tactical is light... but this Smith is just nuts. The downside to the anorexic weight is the increased recoil. Now, .45 isn't a sharp recoiling cartridge, but it does have a good push to it... and this Scandium framed gun lets you feel all of it. Overall though, it doesn't matter... the gun is still perfectly controllable and does just what you ask of it... just with a hair more recovery time between shots. It's not going to replace my Kimber as my IDPA gun, or my Go To gun for bumps in the night... but it very well might become my everyday carry gun.

Now the gun isn't perfect. I don't like the front strap treatment with vertical stripes instead of checkering. And I don't like the fact that it doesn't have night sights. That will be remedied this coming spring. Some skateboard tape will take care of that front strap problem... even if it isn't a problem. More cosmetic than an actual utility issue. Yeah, I'm thinking this will be a great carry gun for me. This is also the conclusion to a decade long search for a lightweight Commander that I never realized I was looking for. Funny how that works out.

Diablo II: My boys have been having a blast with Diablo II. So have I... killed Diablo with my Necromancer named “Mortis” and then rolled back into the Rogue Encampment and opened that portal with Wirt's leg and then killed the Cow King... I've got to get my Amazon there to that point too. She's just started the jungle portion in Act III. That's good gaming right there. The game play is simple, but engrossing. I remember at the time the game looked cool as hell... looking at it now the graphics are painfully dated... but that doesn't stop it from being one of the best games ever made. I still hope Blizzard will decide to make a Diablo III... with a small improvement in graphics... the game design and the randomized maps and the character development... they would make a home run. Blizzard, if you are listening, make DIII. Do this, write down all the reasons to make it and a list of reasons not too. I don't think the Not To reasons would stack up. Word Of Warcraft is fine and all... but Diablo was always my favorite Blizzard game.

Thank you to all who pitched in to help out Kenna. The pageant is tonight, and I will post the results as soon as I can. In her gown... she is breathtaking. She has more talent, and is much prettier than all the other girls in the pageant... it should be a landslide victory for her. The only thing against her is the backstage politics. She's the one that every other chick likes to hate. Including some of the judges who were former student's of Kenna's mother and have opened up competing studios here in the same town because they are tactless classless slobs who think more highly of themselves than others think of them. Kenna can over come those fools. She's cool, she's smart, she's talented, all the other girl's boyfriends watch her as she walks by, and she is a Outdoors kind of girl. I think she represents the best of Uintah County... and of Utah, which I think is her goal. Well, we'll see how this plays out.

Yesterday I bumped into an old mate. He would probably not want me to talk about him... but I will. I knew him years and years ago... We called him “Copperhead”. He earned that name not because of the fact that snakes were his favorite meal... but because he was as fast as they are. Anyways, I knew he went into the SF after graduating Ranger School... then I never even heard of him again. After being many years in the SF he got tapped into Detachment Delta. This guy is in his early 40's and is ripped to the bone. All his muscles are like steel cables. The way he stands is like he was milled out of hardened steel. Anyways, he actually came out to find me. Check this out. He was waiting for me in the parking lot of my work. He didn't come in because he was working up the nerve to come talk to me. I wasn't even working that day, but stopped by to get some ammo and meet another guy from work to go shooting. We had just come back and I transferred some guns from truck to my car when he noticed me. I took off rather quickly and he followed me. He wasn't sure if I was me, so he shadowed me and caught up when I stopped. HOLY CRAP! I couldn't believe my eyes. As far as being one of the spookiest men I've ever seen when it comes to field craft and making things perforated. This guy has been there and done that since I've last seen him. But why did he come find me? He wanted to thank me for something that I had forgotten I had ever done... something I had done without much thought. Anyways, I had given him a copy of the Book of Mormon. Actually, he has asked if he could read mine and I said he could have it if he really meant to read it. Well, he did, and he did. He's now a member of my church... a Mormon. Has been for many years now. He's getting out of the service, hooking up with a gorgeous LDS girl and they plan on getting married Seattle temple. Wow! What makes this so amazing was that when I knew him, he was not just a total jackass, but a very Anti-Mormon jackass at that. Great soldier, but a jackass. He knew that I thought he was going to just destroy the book... and he actually planned on doing just that... but because of what I said, he made it a point of honor to read it. He read it, then re-read it, cross referencing it with the Bible... and then he just knew. He knew that a kid from upstate New York with little education could have ever written such a book. It was either the single greatest work of fiction ever written, or it was actually divine. If it was divine, then that had significant implications. For one, that meant that his Catholic beliefs were missing something. He started questioning things and working out the answers in his head... then looked at how the LDS church actually meshed with what he believed. All the sudden everything made sense to him, and because of the spirit his testimony grew and he had to join. He told me how his life had changed... all for the better... and because of that, he met the woman of his dreams and has never been happier. And he said that he owed it all to me... because I unknowingly bound him by honor to read the Book of Mormon. I'm glad I stopped by work... because he was on his way to Denver and took the long route through Vernal just so he could talk to me. He figured where I was because he's been reading for some time and put two and two together. I guess I'm not that hard of a guy to figure out. Maybe this isn't such a good thing. It was great this time, but maybe next time it's going to be an AR-15 fanatic with a grudge.

8-6-07:  Okay guys, time to pitch in and help! Kenna, the AK Girl, needs to raise some money and she needs to raise more than the other Miss Uintah County contestants. Her meager goal of only 100 dollars is much too low. That's the goal for all the contestants, each of them. Let's blow them out of the water for Kenna!

She came in to the gun shop today with one of her friends looking at Kimber .45's.  They decided that they need to go shoot one of them.  I figure I can let her shoot my Kimber Tac II if she'll let me shoot her Mossberg 20 gauge over under shotgun.   I think that's only fair.   Don't you?  Now, if I can just get her out to one of the IDPA matches, I think she'll be hooked as a Shooter for life.  She could use my CZ P-01, which I think would be a good match for her, until we get her something like a S&W M&P 9MM for IDPA...  Oh, and take a look at the latest issue of Concealed Carry Magazine.  She helped me review the Detonics Combat Master .45.   McKenna needs to be the next Miss Uintah County.   She's like a prettier and younger version of Miss Congeniality but for real.  That and she plays Guitar Hero on HARD.  How cool is that? 

(Late Saturday Night)  I took something between 120 to 150 shots the last two days... and I am exhausted and my shoulders ache. Most of those shots were taken with the new Hoyt Vectrix bow. This might not be a lot of shooting to some guys... but I'm not an archer. Pulling it back and letting it go with a compound bow can put an ache in you if you are not used it it. And these are 70# bows that have been let off down to about 60 pounds... so it wasn't even that heavy... individually. But I did a lot of shooting. Freak, I'm feeling it. Some of the other bows I shot were the Hoyt Trykon, the Fred Bear Instinct, and the AR 32 and 35 bows... and a couple Parkers and PSE's of which the types are not important. The Fred Bear Instinct is a good solid bow. I like it. But it's nothing next to the AR 32 and AR 35 bows. The AR bows rock... very flexible, very fast shooters, very smooth to draw. But they are not nearly as smooth in the shooting as the Trykon. The Trykon is recoil free, shock free, and vibration free... this means the arrow leaves the bow with little if any noise. The Trykon is awesome. Now they there is the Vectrix. As good... as great as the Trykon is, the Vectrix is just that much better. The bow isn't heavy and as you raise it up, it balances well and feels good in the hand. The draw is smooth all the way back to where it cams over with an 80% let off. When you touch off the release, the bow is extremely quiet... you hear the string escape the release and you can hear the arrow's fletchings as they zip through the whisker Bisket – very soft, very subtle sounds. The arrow then lances into the target with a solid “thwack”. The AR's and Fred Bear's have some snap to the sound of the bow shot. The lesser bows practically sound like banjos they have so much twang.

I'm still not an archer... but I have a hell of a lot more appreciation for those who are. Shooting a bow is a much more visceral thing. Shooting a bow is much more intensive... more involved. It really is. Putting your arrow into a 2 inch yellow dot at even 10 yards gives a great deal of satisfaction. Putting that arrow into a trophy buck at 20 while fighting Buck Fever... that takes a massive amount of self control. This is one of the reasons that some Bow Hunters can be dicks with their elitist attitudes... that only bow hunting is real hunting. They might have something there. I don't see myself taking up bow hunting... but I am thinking about buying a Vectrix and developing some skills there.

Now, I might be sore from the shooting... but I think I did well for a blatant novice. I could keep up with the other guys from the gun counter... even winning a small wager. Of course the bet was for push-ups. A young man who I will call “Welcher The Felcher” lost the bet and owed me 50 push-ups. He didn't do them because he's a dirty welching wuss. He still owes them.

8-4-07:  Democrats are truly a pack of flesh craving ghouls. They actually seemed cheery that the bridge in Minneapolis collapsed. Hairyass Reed seemed delighted to be able to blame Bush for it. WTF happened to a little thing called Local Government? My hell, is the Fed responsible for every damn thing now? Hey .gov... my lawn needs mowed. Don't drop the ball on this one! Oh, and a I saw a rabbit get torn up by a falcon yesterday... you might want to think twice before you let that happen again. Rabbits have rights, damn you Bush!

Something happened recently that I've been thinking about. I'm not going to go into specifics but it involved a man on a motorcycle who hit a deer doing about 60 MPH. CPR. And a bloody death. After taking it all in... yes... it is sad that the man died... but really I can't feel bad about it for him. Because he died doing something he loved and really there is no better way to go out. I think the guy was lucky. It happened so fast he felt little pain if any. I believe that if God says it's your time to go – you are going no matter what. You could be overlooking a city on the top of a skyscraper and a gust of wind puts you off balance. You could be changing the oil on your car and the jack starts to bleed pressure and you didn't have the stands right... That happened to me when I was under a Samurai. I didn't know I could bench press a 4X4. Anyways... you could also check out when the bridge your crossing drops into the drink... or you could just stroke out, your brain shorts out, or your heart stops. You can't live in fear. You can't let horrible possibilities dictate the way you live. Sometimes, random bad shit happens. You prepare for the worst, but then you hope for the best and you move on. You don't need to suddenly inspect every single freaking bridge in the big wide 50 states because of a problem with one of them. You don't need to raise taxes because one bridge fell down... throwing money at it isn't a solution. Because the only little freaking detail that is being forgotten is that they were already working on a fully funded restoration project! Now the big push is to find someone to point the finger at. Well, good luck with that... undoubtedly when it is all said and done and we've had congressional investigations from the Department of Whiny Bitches it will come down to rest on the shoulders of some hapless but evil Conservative who eats the livers of puppies and brains of babies and prayed to Baal kneeling naked in a pentagram drawn in the blood of dolphins and drinks blended ground squirrels.

Top Ten & Bottom Ten: I'm still working on this one... lots of good nominations and I have NetFlix sending me out some stuff I didn't know about to see if it rates. So stay tuned and keep the suggestions coming in.

I've mentioned King's Desert Shadow camo before. I believe it is the best camo gear out there for hunting in the dry parts of the western states. Mountain Shadow for areas with more vegetation, and of course Snow for all over during the winter. I love this stuff. I have a full set of Desert Shadow camo the combined set gives me a +3 Bonus vs Coyotes. I'm giving King's a special link in the weapons section. Out in the brush, this camo makes you invisible. It blends like crazy.

8-1-07:  An observation I wish I had made: Email from our man Todd: “I've just read your excellent post about the .22-250 being much superior to the 223 and about the other non-military cartridges that seem to escape the .mil crowd's attention. Yep, the .22-250 is a stomper. I like it's parent and grandparent cartridges, the .250-3,000 Savage and the excellent.300 Savage, both of which would make good battle rifle rounds. I too think the .243 and 7mm-08 are two more rounds that are eminently suited to the hunting of assholes. I personally think the 7mm-08 is a better battle rifle cartridge than is the .308. the 7mm-08 is certainly much better suited to the task than is the new "wonder cartridge" 6.8SPC (Short Puny Cartridge, yeah, i'm not really impressed with it). I believe this round is a contrived solution to the caliber gap between the 223 and the 308. Much like the .40 S&W(short & weak) was supposed to fill the gap between the 9mmx19 and .45 acp, yeah, I still think the .40 S&W is a fence sitting waffler's cartridge. I know why the 6.8spc was designed. It was designed to fit in the crappy m-4 system, which makes as much sense as trying to design a 6cylinder fuel injected turbo engine for a yugo, sure it can be done but why bother? just go for a better round/system, quit putting lipstick on a pig, oh,for the love of mary! Yes I absolutely agree with you, why does the .mil crowd go to such trouble when the preeminent group of battle cartridges already exist in the forms of : .243, .260, 7mm-08 Remington's, as well as the .22-250 (if one must employ a .22), 250-3,000 savage and 300 savage? Hubris and protecting their little fiefdoms, I suppose....Well anyway, rant over. I especially liked your 07/25/07 post because it really got me thinking about good ol' classic cartridges and the beautiful real wood and blue steel works of art that have helped make such cartridges legend. Thanks for the good, thought provoking posts. -Todd

The 6.8 as the .40 of the rifle world. That's a great observation, because it is. Trying to get more horsepower while staying within specified dimensional boundaries. (Making the 10MM fit in a 9MM sized gun) That's exactly what the .40 did. The 6.8 does the same thing. What results is rarely anything all that great... but really anything more powerful than the .223 is a welcomed improvement. Many guys say “Just go back to the .308 and forget it.” And that isn't a bad idea. But I question that. Why the .308 when there are other cartridges that might actually do the job better. I am in love with the 7MM-08 cartridge. It is simply a .308 necked down to 7mm. The same alchemy that makes the 25-06 such a fantastic cartridge and such an improvement over the venerated .30-06 comes into play here. The 7MM-08 benefits from a smaller diameter, lighter, faster, and with an improved ballistic coefficient. The results are better trajectories and great down range hitting power. And it is in a pleasant shooting package that really isn't intimidating to shoot at all. If you think .308 is a pleasant shooter, the 7MM version shoots like a pussycat. Of course, if you think .223 even has recoil then you have no business commenting on military or hunting or any other sport shooting... so STFU and go back to playing Duck Hunt or Counter Strike. The other great thing about the 7MM is the broad spectrum of loads that can be developed because of the huge assortment of bullets available in 7MM. I've seen 110 grain bullets all the way up to 175 grains. At the top it is only 5 grains lighter than the standard 180 .30 caliber classic, but has a better ballistic coefficient. Model this on any ballistic calculation software and you find there is a good benefit. Bring that load down to a 162 or 154 grain bullet and it just gets all kinds of sweetness. Remember, the .223's average bullet is only 55 grains.

Of course all this Armchair General talk means nothing. In actuality because of the political nature of military contracts now days, .223 is going to be the military cartridge of choice until the end of days. Look at how long the M-16 has been in the arsenals. No other nation on Earth has had a service rifle for so long. Most of the nations that also use M-16's do so as a more recent “upgrade” from older platforms. But look at Israel. They had the AK and then their version of it which was accurate and reliable, but heavy... so they finally went with the M-16 (it helps when we given them away to Israel for free) but now they are in the process of fielding TAVOR rifles to all their ground forces. We can argue the caliber but the only thing the .Mil is really looking at right now is the platform. The two leading candidates for the contract are the FNH SCAR-L rifle and the HK XM-8.

Suggestion: S&W needs to buy the XCR rifle from Robinson Armaments, crank up the production for it and enter it into the fray... this time following all the guidelines and requirements. It would be very nice to have the US military using a US weapon. Is that too much to ask? If Alex Robinson refuses to sell, fine. Take a good hard look at the FN FAL (para) system, redesign the action into a smaller, lighter system that is multi-caliber capable and there you have it. Nothing against FN or HK... but they are over rated and quite full of themselves... not to mention, over priced. And not to mention that HK has little respect for the American Shooting Community. (Oh no? Then where is the civilian G-36 and what happened to the .45ACP carbine? Don't give me that SL-8 crap! Ten Round Mags? Bullshit!)

I just have one little question: How did they get the permits to film “Hot Fuzz”? Because it seems that it is the last sort of flick that the UK would allow. Brilliant flick. I loved. it.

I've had a good suggestion come to me here at and I'm going to expand upon it. I've got my lists, but I want to hear from The Horde on this one – Especially from our overseas and other Blogging Hordemen. We all like a good action movie, right? So, let's make the ultimate list for the Top 10 Best Gun Fights Of All Time. The rules for this are simple and the gun fights have to be from major motion pictures that are available on DVD from, NetFlix, or Blockbusters. Nothing no one but you has ever even heard of. Now, here is a twist: I also want to hear your Bottom Ten WORST gunfights of all time, following the same requirements but with one addition... We all know gunshots to do not make one fly ten yards backwards through plate glass windows. So just because that might happen in a certain film or gunfight scene, does not instantly qualify as a Bottom Ten selection. The Top Ten is easy... but the Bottom Ten is the real challenge. You are going to have to sort through piles of rubbish and risk a mad rush to the vomitorium to make these selections. You are going to have to dredge up nightmares of bad acting and bad gunplay... I want the worst of the worst to truly qualify as the ultimate Bottom Ten here. The consensus will be posted and ties will be brought forth for voting by The Horde. I think this might even rate as an item for discussion, perhaps on Now, this isn't for the whole movie, just one specific scene. Of course, some movies might be so ripe that a single movie might have half your selections in it. Let's not include movies that are comedies... Such as Hot Fuzz that I've mentioned earlier. Yes the gunfights are horrid, but they are supposed to be funny. I want the ones that are supposed to be taken seriously. For example, Smokin Aces where the FBI returns fire across to another hotel building with pistol and shotgun... and then the guy throws his pistol at the other building. My Hell, that is so stupid, it is probably well within my bottom lowest 5. This will be a part of the new Movie Section that I'm going to totally redo shortly.

One last thought on this subject. Of the best gunfights... the fighters don't actually have to be pulling the trigger. They could be using the gun as an impact weapon or something. Let's not leave out possible good bayonettings or butt-strokings. (A butt-Stroke is where you using your rifle stock to smash the adversary's face to pulp... simple, brutal, and effective. Never jams and never goes out of style unless you are using an M-16 and then don't do it unless you are totally out of ammo because it will break your rifle.) Westerns, Sci-Fi, Horror, Crime Dramas, War... all are to be considered.





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