Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Boomsticks: The nearly-free gun.

So, in a largeish trade we did recently, we acquired a little youth-sized .410 gauge H&R Topper. Not knowing what else to do with it, I stuck it out on the floor rack for $49.

I've been thinking about it ever since.

I mean, I've spent more than that on lunch before. Ponder the following, if you will; for less than a C-note, somebody could pick up a cosmetically nice, functioning gun (complete with tax and TICS check fee), plus plenty of buckshot, slugs, and birdshot. It's nice and small, so it'd be an ideal truck/trunk gun. It'd make a better canoeing gun than one of those Henry Survival Rifles. (If the Henry falls overboard, it floats. If the H&R falls overboard, who cares? It was only $50, after all.) It'd make a great gun for teaching kids to shoot.

It's sounding more and more attractive by the day.

Y'know, I don't currently own any disposable guns, myself. Hmm.

Blatant Capitalism: Internet Shoot at Coal Creek Armory

For you East Tennessee shooters, we've decided to put together an Internet Shoot Day at Coal Creek Armory on Saturday, Sept. 3rd.

Simply go to The Firing Line or The High Road and post in the appropriate threads, then bring a printed copy of your post into the shop on Saturday for half off range time, a stylin' "Automatics For The People" bumper sticker, and whatever other swag we decide to dump on our adoring public.

See y'all there!

Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Gear Ho': Ninja Flashlight of Death.

A recent power outage convinced me that I needed a dedicated around-the-house flashlight in a place I could find it, so my Surefire G2 got demoted from my pocket to my nightstand. This, of course, made a splendid excuse for buying a new flashlight.

Taking advantage of a few spare ducats rolling around in my purse and a good sale at work, I skipped over the Nitrolon G2 and went for the Z2. I then strolled over to where we keep the super-swoopy GG&G accessories and picked up a TID for it. Now my light is not only a combat light, but it has a tactical impact device.

The odds of me ever having to put a beatdown on somebody with a flashlight are located somewhere in the murky area between "slim" and "none", but it sure does look cool. I mean, hey, a choice between 'just a flashlight' and a tactical combat light with fangs is no choice at all.

Politics: A House Divided By Katrina...

Do you believe:

A) Halliburton, the NRA, and Big Oil ordered Bush to cause Hurricane Katrina in order to drive up oil prices and spur support for fascist homeland security measures,

B) Activist judges, the UN, and Michael Moore ordered Osama Bin Laden to use Saddam-supplied "Hurricane Bombs" to drive support for gay marriage and boost Hillary's chances in '08, or

C) You'd like to join the other three remaining sane people in the nation for beer and poker at my place.

Please choose one, and supply your reasons, which will not be graded, but (if A or B) will probably be laughed at and stapled to the wall at work for exposure to community derision. Thank you.

Monday, August 29, 2005

Bikes: Bike Day at CCA.

I ride. My boss rides. One of our gunsmiths rides.

So it's our First (Annual? Monthly? Weekly? Who knows; we're making this up as we go...) Bike Day at Coal Creek Armory. Local riders who like both bikes and shooting get to congregate and have a good time.

Of course, the outer edges of Katrina are scheduled to give us a good drenching, so the Ninjette will languish in the driveway while I drive the Beemer to work.

Oh, the irony...

Books: Gates of Fire

I had been reading Michael Grant's The Founders of the Western World, and enjoying it immensely, but it has been temporarily set aside due to outside circumstances. While surfing the net, I stumbled across a riveting account of heroism at Michael Yon's blog.


Those pictures tell an amazing story. See that guy right there at the very pointy end of the stick? The light colonel? He is leading. That's Six Actual right out there at the tip of the spear. Absolutely unbelievable stuff.

Anyway, reading that caused me to put Grant's book down for the moment, and pull Steven Pressfield's Gates of Fire off the shelf for a re-read. I'd forgotten how much I enjoyed it...

Bikes: Mutable Distances.

Have you noticed that two points are further apart via bike than they are by car?

Work is only 7.5 miles away in the Beemer, but I can't seem to shorten the trip down past 9.7 miles on the Ninjette. Similarly, the local inconvenience store is only 2.6 miles from my doorstep by roadster, but more than twice that when travelling by 250R.

There's a new law of physics in there, somewhere...

Sunday, August 28, 2005

Boomsticks: Another Mini-1911 bites the dust...

You think I'd learn.

In the last five years or so, at least four sub-5" 1911's have wended their way through my collection, yet none remain today.

First was the ParaOrd P.12-45. Despite repeat appearances in my battery and a generally good reliability record, this chubby little pistol never really caught my heart. I gave it one last chance at a fling this year, but it still couldn't make me swoon. Wide of girth and full of nastily cast parts, it was always just a Painted Ordnance at heart, and now it is gone.

Next was a Springfield V-10 Ultra Compact. I dumped a ton of money on this little beastie, but it always shot low for me. Plus, it was ported, didn't like anything other than full-power ammo, and the slide would rust if you looked at it crosseyed. I dumped a Beretta Border Marshal for it back in '01, and wound up swapping it for a 3" S&W Model 610 back in '04.

After that was a Kimber Compact. Less than 48 hours later I was trading it back to the friend I'd received it from: I just couldn't warm up to the little gun, with its MIM parts and its bastard slide length.

The most recent attempt was a Colt Gunsite CCO. It was nice and light, but its light weight and small size made it a flinch-inducing beastie for me if the range session went beyond a couple of magazines. Additionally, I had been exposed to a raft of cool 1911 customizing ideas from the fertile mind-meld of our two gunsmiths in the back, and I lacked a base gun to try them out on (I mean, the cheapest 1911 I had lying around was a Clackamas rollmarked Kimber with a sub-8k serial #; not exactly a piece whose frame you want to huck up in the mill vise....) So, I 86'ed the CCO in exchange for a stainless 1991A1 and a T/C Encore rifle (that's all I need: a way to spend each and every paycheck on new barrels and chamberings for the T/C,) and plan on building the 1991 up in grand style: checkering, grip reduction, beavertail, XS sights, et cetera, ad nauseum. Watch this space for photos as Shannon and Bob work their juju...

A blog? What the hell, why not...

My boss has a blog. The little girl down the street has a blog. A local medium is typing my dead grandmother's blog from beyond the grave.

I was starting to feel a little left out.

So, uh, what the hey, here's mine...