Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Elite Team Fighter.

Somebody in a forum asked which "elite" outfits were still using 1911s. There was a little discussion, and I realized that this is a line of thinking that I have gotten very out of touch with over the last several years.

I mean, it used to be a Very Big Deal to me that I was carrying zomg teh exact same pistol as FBI HRT! Now I'm carrying a gun just like the one issued by... by... um... I don't know. Or care, really.

Seriously, when I was carrying a Glock 29, you better cool believe that I could inform you that the Kentucky State Police issued 10mm Glocks, and it was a constant point of contention on gun forums to debate which brand of pistol was used by more militaries or police forces.

Maybe the Mall of America's elite Food Court Team 6 issues the M&P 9? Whatever; it's all good.

44 comments:

TBeck said...

Silly rabbit, it wasn't "Gecko9" or "Gecko355".

Yrro said...

Well, there is still the first check of "does anyone use these?" you wouldn't be carrying an M&P if it hadnt passed a few departments' tests.

Tam said...

Yrro,

True.

And I do know that the M&P is in common usage, and that's good enough for me.

I guess the main thing is that I no longer feel compelled to know who is using it or cheer every time a new agency adopts it, the way I used to, like I was keeping track of a sports team or something.

bluesun said...

And that's exactly what all the gun arguments on the internet are, rooting for your sports team of choice.

Bubblehead Les. said...

Oh, it's just not the Firearms. Remember the Brouhaha back when the FBI was jumping around between 9mm 147g Subsonic/10mmm/.40 S+W? Then the 6.8 SPC that was going to be the NEW Military Round (even though the DOD was buying all the 5.56 Nato it could get to use, even from Foreigners because there was a War happening?).

But hey, putting a Navy Seal Stamp on an H+K more than justifies it's Price Increase, right?

Of course, I'm waiting for the Special Limited Edition Spetnaz Krinkov to be imported from Russia. I heard it's MSRP is going to be under $3,000!

Anonymous said...

One of the nice things about being a dedicated j-frame toter is that I'm so far behind the curve, these discussion no longer apply.

Of course, there are those who would insist I obviously don't value my life because I'm carrying 5 shots of 38 instead of their current gun/caliber of choice. :)

Chris

Anonymous said...

I picked my pistol because SWAT teams have had more one shot stops on dogs with it than any other firearm.

Gerry

Stacy said...

My carry weapon is the same as Archer's. /awesome

Rob Reed said...

Tam,

I'd like to hear more from you about how and why you went from "there" to "here."

You've kinda talked around the edges of the subject with posts like this one, and the "pistol trainer forum ruined pistols for me" comment.

But, what was the epipheny you had that made you decide to forgoe your custom 1911 and go to the M&P?

Personally, I see the "I want the platonic ideal of a gun" idea as a "mature" stage of gun ownership. I know you crystallized some of my not-quite-clear thinking with your observations. But, what experience or thinking actually led you there?

Rob

Will said...

I believe that at some point in the development of every serious practitioner of gunfu comes the epiphany that the hardware you carry is really of minor importance. The gear queers usually don't make the connection. Inner peace comes from realizing that you will prevail in spite of your equipment, or lack of it.

SGB said...

The Mall of America is my litmus test for firearm carry. :)

Yrro said...

@Will

Although I find it amusing that what the people espousing this idea *really* mean is "It doesn't matter what gear you pick, as long as it's an M&P, Glock, or HK."

Not that they're *wrong*, it's just that the zen seems to fall apart a bit when the rubber meets the road.

Tam said...

Yrro,

If that's how your read it, you're reading it wrong.

Panamared said...

It's always nice to know that someone has spent there time and money to test equipment, but ultimately the final test is does that equipment fit and work for me.

cj said...

As I pointed out in a similar discussion I got sucked into, many of the 'elite' users end up with whatever could be bulk purchased at the lowest price while still maintaining a minimum level of performance. Is that really the best criteria for selecting an individual weapon?

Then there's familiarity. Lots of non-gunnies come out of the military and decide to buy a gun, so they get a Beretta since it's what they know.

Stretch said...

I carry what I do 'cause it's what Dad carried in the Korean and Vietnamese Wars. And what my Grandfather carried in The Great War.
No, not the same weapon but one a lot like it.

Tam said...

Stretch,

A USGI Colt is a fine and proven gun. (There are quite a few guns shaped like it that aren't, however; caveat emptor and all. But everyone knows that. ;))

docjim505 said...

I think that this ties in with your remarks a few days ago about people defending their decisions as a proxy for defending their intelligence: "I use the BlastoMatic 2000, just like Seal Team Delta Four uses, 'cuz, like, I'm SMART!"

SpeakerTweaker said...

I don't know of any department that issues the Px4 Storm, but I sure do like mine.

Never did much care for who else carries what I carry. As long as it don't break - and I mean, first 10 rounds, factory oopsie break - with regularity, then I'm good. So far, so good.



tweaker

Boat Guy said...

Once again, "It ain't the arrow, it's the Indian".
I've carried (been issued) weapons that were the "ne plus ultra" at the time (Glock, 226) to the lowest-common-denominator/"procurement special" (M9). The first pistol I was issued was a 1911A1, parkerized and nearly invisible sights and all...I've seen one of our "elite" units go from "custom" 1911's to "custom" Glocks. I am currently vacillating between various 1911's (no rails), my .45 XD (rail, duh) with occasional excursions into 226-land based on logistic considerations.
I don't really care if the Teams are still using 226's or the Marines are reintroducing 1911's or even whether the cool kids are hanging onto their Glocks or getting phased-plasma weapons. I DO want to be carrying something I know I can use well that launches something of quality/quantity that will make me happier than the bad people...
Jaded? Ambivalent? Tired? Dunno...

Mossyrock said...

For most of my adult life (and I'm pushing the Half Century mark pretty hard), I carried a custom 1911 of one flavor or another, some of which were hand-built by some of the top 'smiths in the country. Today, I am more likely to carry an M&P 9mm or a German surplus Sig P-6 (P225), also in 9mm. Or, if I am feeling REALLY bold, it will be a 2" model 12 S&W Airweight. Why stray from the 1911? I can't say that I really know. When I get it figured out, I'll let you know....

JAG2955 said...

MAROSC. Of course, we Marines will do things just a little differently than everyone else, just because...

Of course, I like my 1911 for a list of reasons, which does not include that MARSOC uses it.

DirtCrashr said...

Past the half-century I got an Ed Brown commander-length because, even though I can't carry, only rich old Civilian farts have 'em. I've turned the corner and actively do not want what the Army or FBI or State PD have - now I want a Korth, or something pretty, but not fancy-pretty.

LCB said...

I think a lot of this has to due with maturity. When I was a young musician, I just HAD to have the same equipment as my favorite bass player. As I got older, I started realizing that A)I was really a wanna-be musician and B)I could play much better if I found a guitar that "fit" me instead of what "fit" my hero.

So...if you're 50 as I am and STILL carrying a weopon because your hero GIJoe carries it and not because it fits you...then you're still somewhat immature.

Angus McThag said...

Hey! 6.8 _IS_ going to be the next military round!

Krusty is coming.
Krusty is coming.
Krusty is coming.

Bram said...

All I care about is what pistol ammo my State Police use - so I can use the same. When I have to defend my choice in court, I can point at the Deputy standing there.

Sport Pilot said...

People like trinkets, if the warrior class or regulators have really cool, shiny baubles than folk’s just have to have the same ones as well. Some free thinkers look at the shiny baubles disdainfully and want no part of them, choosing instead to stay with their traditional feathers and such. But for others every time the anointed ones upgrade or scale down to new baubles, well they’ll find a way to follow on as well.

Robbie said...

I own an HK and a Glock... but what I CARRY are airweight .38 revolvers. So I guess I am way uncool. :(

Noah D said...

But...but...poodleshooter! Europellet!

Ah, well. :)

I don't really care if the Teams...or...the cool kids are...getting phased-plasma weapons.

Actually, I'd care a lot about this! I haven't had nearly enough energy weapon squee! lately...

Yrro said...

@Tam

I know it's not how people mean it. I know that it's because those plastic guns best exemplify the concept of the gun as an appliance, that they're tried and tested by multiple police departments and represent the current best engineered intersection between just stupid functional and not too expensive. That it isn't out of brand loyalty, or a desire to be cool or to have the ultimate fighting weapon, but rather something that just works, like a used Accord.

I know there are no magic swords, but that some swords are still sharper than others, and that it's the Indian not the Arrow and that really as long as the gun works no one cares what you're shooting as long as you shoot it a lot and learn to shoot it well...

It just amuses me that those articles are almost always followed up, by the same authors (looking at the guys at pistol-forum, for whom I have the UTMOST respect and all of whom know a million times more than I do about shooting) by a list of reasons not to buy any gun but one of those three. Revolvers are too low of a capacity, 1911's require too much tweaking and tuning, XD's grip safeties break, modern SIG's are a joke when it comes to QC, CZ's are unreliable...

Essentially, that those three brands are the only brands that qualify as acceptable guns for practitioners of the zen of no gun...

Which I in no way actually mean to dispute! I think they're right. Well, as well as I am qualified to judge whether they are right or not. I believe they are right.

I just think it makes the whole zen thing sound a little funny, when what is actually being said seems to be "reliability and capacity are kings above all else, and any gun that succeeds based on that metric is as good as any other gun that succeeds based on that metric, using the high standards set by these guns."

I know there's a different between brand loyalty/herd mentality and recommending a brand because of it is one of the few who meet your exacting standards... I'm *not* trying to call people Glock or HK fanboys... but the end recommendation seems to be the same thing.

"Use any gun that works.... *but*, there are the only guns that I am pretty sure will work." I mean, yes, there is a philosophical difference implied... but at the end of the day, the actual emphasis turned into advice seems to end up more on the "but."

Frank W. James said...

Never really gave this aspect of 'gun ownership' much thought. Being a farmer (now, 'retired') I always gravitated toward what WORKED and by that I mean FROM MY OWN PERSONAL EXPERIECE, not from what some idiot said would work. (BTDT too many times to go back down that road!)

Hence, a S&W Md. 57 or 657 in .41 Magnum because AFTER I shot something (most any size you care to mention) with a .41 Mag around here, THEY STOPPED MOVING!

Works for me!

I always thought that was a pretty good standard by which to judge these things. I didn't know I had to reference it to some secret squirrel team meeting or fraternal handshake thingie or so many inches of red jello and banannas desert.

Are those revolvers BIG and HEAVY and hard to conceal? Of course, they are, so I move down the scale to the next thing that works best, usually something 1911ish in 10mm Auto.

Again, I KNOW THESE THINGS WORK AT STOPPING STUFF OUT BEHIND THE BARN OR IN THE FIELDS.

Very unscientific I understand, but I KNOW what the results are firsthand.

I would recommend you try it sometime with your favorite blaster (Yeah, I know 'heartless' killing and all that) when visiting the 'outback', just so you aren't placing a bunch of blind faith in theories that get routinely get raped by reality...

All The Best,
Frank W. James

Anonymous said...

When I thought I might have to use a pistol as part of my duty, I got rid of the phosphate M1911A1 military issue, and got a Combat Commander, with Bomar sights. And an M-16A1 with M-203 grenade launcher. Just in case my 4.2 inch mortar wasn't handy.

Since I left that line of work I have backed off to a SW625 for home and a .44 cap and ball for "California doesn't permit me to carry firearms concealed" car use. The .44 Navy cap and ball is not considered a firearm in California due to its lacking the metallic cartridge technology.

Goober said...

Who cares which department uses which? The day that I base my buying decisions for any-damned-thing on whether some government agency/bureaucracy uses it or not, I will have a tag on my toe.

And sadly, that includes the US military, too.

I've just had enough honest dealings with these various agencies to know that they don't make good decisions in anything else, at all, so why would I value their decision on what hip artillery they use?

Lazy Bike Commuter said...

Huh, I didn't think KSP had adopted the 10mm. Someone I knew who was helping evaluate it said he didn't like it due to excessive muzzle flash in low light.

That said, I don't know of any "organizations" that use the XD, but I haven't seen any reason not to trust it, either. My next carry gun will likely be an XDm SC in 9mm (my wife just got the full size, and I LOVE it).

mikelaforge said...

Food Court Team Six. Snerk. Thanks.

Gerry N. said...

I'm well past the half century mark, if that means anything. I carry a Star B 'cause it fits my hand, it fires every time I pull the trigger, it cost me $60.00 at a gun show and the seller threw in six spare mags, and 300 rounds of Venezuelan 9mm ammo. It looks and feels like a M1911 and scares the poo out of bad guys if I have to pull it. Which has happened eezakly twice in 30 years. Still have never fired it except in practice.

Jeffro said...

I suppose there is no high speed low drag black ops organizations that issue Dale Earnhardt #3 trapper pocket knives. Sigh.

Earl said...

As I continue to slow down, personally and the economy, I find satisfaction in that my rifle and pistol are winners from the last World War, not that it improves my handling of the weapons, just my satisfaction.

Cybrludite said...

SpeakerTweaker,

The Jefferson Parish Sheriff's Office replaces their Model 92s with the Px4.

Cybrludite said...

Er, "replaced", that is.

Matt G said...

I'm a 40 year old man with a receding hair line, a growing paunch, and a worn old J-frame somewhere on my strong side. If I were any less tactical, I'd be the elder king here.

Wilson said...

The best tool is the one that works best for you.

bmill113 said...

Tam, didn't you snark about the polymer M&P line in 2005?

I'm not saying that a years old opinion can't change, seeing as how I used to be one of those "I'll never own a glock" goons, but I figured I'd just drag up old history

Tam said...

bmill13,

"Tam, didn't you snark about the polymer M&P line in 2005?"

I made fun of the name, yes, but I don't think I've had much bad to say about the pistols. They're perfectly serviceable soulless plastic bullet-launching appliances.

FWIW, I carried Glocks for almost ten years before I switched to 1911s...