Category Archives: Weapons

As Tempus is Fugiting (H/T to Pete at WRSA) REALLY Fast Now….a Public Service Announcement

It might be time to break open that little nest egg and BLOAT!!  Just hope it’s not too late!

Buy it cheap (never been cheaper than it is now) and stack it deep!  Don’t sweat buying on line, either – you’re already on a list if you’ve ever bought with a credit card or check.  Just. Get. The. Ammo!  For both rifle AND pistol/revolver!!

Here’s a good place to start:  www.ammoseek.com

And, don’t forget the other expendable resource for your chosen defensive platforms:  Magazines.  Basic rule of thumb:  Half the money paid for a platform (rifle OR pistol) should be spent on magazines, ie, you paid a grand for your rifle, you buy $500 in magazines.  Remember, they’re an expendable item!!  Right now you can get 10 aluminum 30 round mags at Palmetto State Armory for $90 with free shipping!  Can’t beat that with a stick!  Hurry, expires sometime tommorow!

And What, American Marksman, Would a Target Like This Provide You?

This photo, taken from Breitbart*, here, poses an interesting question in terms of marksmanship hypothetical discourse:

What would an active target, posed like this, mean to the armed American citizen if he or she found him or herself in a place and time where people like this were actively conducting unconventional war somewhere in the continental US?

Photo Credit: HENGHAMEH FAHIMI/AFP via Getty Image

Answer:  The astute shooter would find it much easier to sail a round through his aorta or liver or kidneys or spine or another vital spot such as the cranial cavity,  depending on the angle of view, and the shooter possessed the requisite skills.  Torso shot would have a higher percentage for most, but this target provides a lot of possibilities.

I now return you to your regular Sunday morning reading.

*Breitbart neither agrees, disagrees, or endorses this hypothetical discussion on marksmanship; link provided to their site for credit purposes.

Try This Drill Out for Size….

40 feet – cold barrel; round chambered target at 35 feet (about the same distance as the West Freeway Church incident.

Say, ‘Go!’ and put one round in the head of the ‘bad target.’  Mine below was done twice:  Once with my Glock 21 and once with my Beretta M9.   I did better with the M9, but that was the second shot.  The first, with the Glock 21, showed me I need more practice.

                        Left shot with Berretta M9; Fed HST +P – Right shot with Glock 21; Win 230gr FMJ

 

                         Practice at same distance – same target, w/Glock 21 and full 13 round magazine

If you are helping out at your church with security, your congregation should expect that you are practicing….a LOT.

 

This is a test – It is ONLY a Test!

Productivity Counts!  There ain’t NO time to be simply layin’ about if you haven’t done something productive for ‘Team Freedom’!!

No matter what level of preparedness you’re at, you might consider kicking it up a notch.  Doing something.

If you can afford it, get a AR kit and build one (just this act alone causes 3,952 liberal heads to overfill with air and burst).

Palmetto has kits for $289 and lowers for $60.  Less than $350 for a ‘better than decent AR!’  The lower below is for someone I know purdy good.

Buy some more ammo!  I just picked up a case of 9mm 124gr Winchester FMJ from SG Ammo for $206 (less tax) shipped!

Go to the range and PRACTCE, PRACTICE, PRACTICE!

Re-do your kit!

Teach a kid to shoot an AR!

Teach anyone how to properly sharpen a knife!

Get some more non-perishable food and water filtration that works (Sawyer, anyone?)

Take long hikes with heavy packs (you be the judge on ‘heavy’)

Plan, plan, plan!

Refrain from beating your chest on the various data collection sites (aka ‘social media’)!

Let your reward be the nice, comfy, warm feeling you get from doing the above.

And now, we return you to your regularly scheduled programming….

                                             Lee Marvin Guest Star with Vic Morrow on “Combat!” tv series

 

Get Thee to Thy Range!

 

                                                   25 yards – mix of .45 ACP Ball and .357 SJHP – Clearly, more practice is required!

Life, if you let it, will get in your way when it comes to practicing those skills that will keep you and your family alive in the worst possible scenario.Don’t let life do that! Make and schedule regular time for your dry fire and range practice.  You’ll be glad you did even in the event you never have to use the skills you’ve honed. Why?  Because you’ll be confident you had the skills if you needed them.

Time continues to slip by us, and according to the MSM, 7 in 10 Americans believe some really nasty, spicy times are ahead.

Train now, train often, and stack ’em deep!

Part II: The Ideal Sidearm?

19 round capability (18 round mags & 1 chambered) coupled with a LONG history of reliability and superb ammunition choices, such as the Federal HST (my pick), make the Beretta M9 an excellent choice for a sidearm – though there are others equally as good or better, depending on personal preference and analysis.

In the original post, here, the point was simply made, “The ideal sidearm is the one you have in your hand.”

That’s true, in the most base terms, because if whatever you have is all you’ve got, then it is ideal when compared to having an empty hand.

When going beyond that most basic premise, the intellect should be employed to do a bit of pre-response analysis and tool capability comparison, both specification and performance wise.

Here’s a few questions that are also basic, but essential:

  • What is the nature of the threat you perceive you will most likely be faced with?
  • Is it a single threat, or will there be more than one, such as criminal activity coupled with self-defense against a predatory animal or simply self-defense against criminals or self-defense against predatory animals?

  • Do you have, or are you capable of developing the physical strength necessary to not only operate the sidearm chosen effectively, but navigate the physical stress you will be subjected to immediately before, during, and after the threat presents itself?  If not, are you willing to put yourself on a program to develop the physical attributes necessary?

  • If you anticipate a multiple threat scenario as most likely, does the sidearm you are considering have the ability to hold enough rounds for the initial engagement and then be reloaded quickly for subsequent engagement prior to the cessation of the threat?
  • Do you have the discipline to routinely practice techniques necessary for self-defense in both dry and ‘wet’ fire consistently?

  • Do you have the equipment necessary to carry your chosen sidearm in a legal manner (until it no longer matters, if every, carrying legally is the way to do it – that way you don’t end up in prison for otherwise lawfully defending yourself or others)?

  • What are the specifications of the ammunition you plan on using?  Is it capable of sufficient penetration and expansion when coupled with shot placement to stop the threat you’re faced with?

  • Have you planned to use the same bullet weight for practice as well as for ‘real world’ carry and self-defense in order to experience very similar recoil and point of aim/impact?

There are many more questions you can ask along these lines – remember – we’re narrowing down the countless choices of sidearms available based on our own personal circumstances.  So, should you be new to owning and training with a sidearm, will help you make educated decisions that could save your life or the lives of others.

The Ideal Sidearm?

My Desert Eagle – The Best Zombie Engine Block Killer I’ve Got!  Zero’d at 100 meters.

Which sidearm, revolver or pistol, would qualify as ‘THE‘ ideal in a national contest of all the sidearms available today?  That’s a tough question.  Or is it?

We all have our favorites and can justify our choices to any ‘naysayer,’ right??

Smith, Sig, Glock, Beretta, Colt, Ruger, Kahr, etc, etc, etc, etc!

Mag fed, wheel gun, long barrel, short barrel, adjustable trigger, after market, etc, etc, etc, etc!

50AE, .45ACP, 10mm, 9mm, .357 Mag, 44 Mag, .38 Special, .380, 25 Auto, etc, etc, etc, etc!

And I’m sure there’d be no shortage of folks able to rank all the sidearms they’ve ever owned or shot as to their place in the ‘ideal’ line up.

What we can’t do a great majority of the time, is answer the question understandably and simply, ‘Which is THE ideal sidearm?’

Until now.

And, this choice of sidearm has been mentioned countless times to countless audiences, friends, students and acquaintances before by countless people steeped in common sense, even though various authors, experts, and shooting writers fail to simply acknowledge this simple truth as they discover, debate, and judge, ‘the next IDEAL sidearm.’

Which is THE ideal sidearm?

The one that’s in your hand, loaded, and ready to employ against the threat you’re facing.

Period.

Once you know that, everything else falls into place, because no matter what your personal choice is, you’ll be doing dry fire drills, live fire, ammunition experimentation, mag change drills, and so forth, so when it IS in your hand, you’ll use it effectively, no matter who made it or what type of sidearm it happens to be.

Second Range Report – Savage Model 10 FCP-SR and Primary Arms 4-14 ACSS FFP Illuminated ACSS-HUD-DMR-308

In the first post on this rifle, here, I shot 175gr rounds from various manufactures from Berger down to Fiocchi (cost & inherent accuracy wise).   This time, I’m shooting 168gr from various manufacturers:  IMI, Federal, Fiocchi, and Mag Tech.  Berger doesn’t make a 168gr HPBT match, at least, easily found for sale. So, I’ve got 4 match grade HPBT rounds to compare.

As you can see by reading the first report, the Berger 175’s were top notch in accuracy and quality of production.  Lapua brass, match primers, superb projectiles, and bordering on ‘scary’ accuracy.

Now, to be fair, I fouled the barrel prior to my anecdotal evidence experiment, and didn’t clean the barrel inbetween brands.  So, the Fiocchi had the dirtiest and warmest barrel temps to deal with.  To rule that out, next phase, after the 168’s, I’m shooting the Fioochi first and the Berger’s last, with IMI (new batch of 175gr Match) ad Federal in the middle.  We’ll see how that goes.  Digression complete.

Something else I’m doing doing different is checking impact of the torque of the action screws on accuracy.  Savage says they should be torqued between 30 and 35 inch pounds.  I’ve torqued them as close as I could to 33 inch pounds.  So, we’ll see what happens.  If the first 3 shot groups (yeah, I know, 5 rounds is a better test and I’ll do that later) are more than an inch, I’ll adjust the torque to 35 pounds.  If it shrinks it, great, if it opens up more, I’ll back it down to around 30 and see what that does.

Here’s the results as they were shot.

185 Gr Federal “Juggernaut”  – HUGE disappointment as these rounds are loaded with Berger bullets and about as expensive as the Berger/Lapua 175gr below (about $1.24 per round).  I really expected them to equal, if not best, the Berger brand.  While not ‘bad,’ per se, the 1.5 inch large group was either a fluke or an indicator of possible QA concerns due to the lack of consistency.

Small:  .416 Inches

Large:  1.5 inches

Avg:  .897

175 GRAIN HPBT MATCH COMPARISON

Berger 175 gr HPBT: The most accurate, and most expensive round in the 175gr range.  You do get what you pay for!  $1.24 per round, delivered.

Small:  .311 inches – I’m thinking with some practice, I could easily do “one hole groups” with this ammo.

Large:  .837 inches

Avg:  .574 inches – Basically a half inch at 100 meters.  On average.  Don’t get NO better than that with factory loaded ammo!!

Prime 175 gr HPBT:  I could easily stick with these due with the price point of .94 per round delivered; 30 cents per round less expensive than the Berger (which is a SUPERB round).  If I were to be concerned with budget, this would be my round of choice.

Small: .540 inches

Large:  1.04 inches

Avg:  .730 inches

Federal Match 175 gr HPBT:  Meh.  Federal Match oughta be better out of the box.

Small: .478 Inches

Large:  1.88 inches

Avg:  1.26 inches

Barnes “Precision” 175 gr HPBT:  (Rounds had obvious water spots on the projectiles from improper storage – could have had something to do with performance, but all brands were purchased from the same distributor – no other problems noted whatsoever.)  Will not use – actually feel I wasted the money on the test ammo.

Small: 1.61 inches

Large:  2 inches

Avg:  1.74 inches

MAGTECH ‘First Defense’ 168gr HPBT Match:  If I go 168gr, these are going to be my round of choice…..these are the ‘poor man’s’ accuracy round.  A real sleeper!  Excellent performance all around.  Average about exactly between a half in and three quarters of an inch group at 100 meters!  REALLY good factory load alternative for 168’s.

SUPERB performance, especially when one notes MAGTECH is an ‘economy’ brand.

Small:  .383 inches

Large:  .832 inches

Avg:  .670 inches

IMI 168gr Match (HPBT):  Meh. I expected more out of IMI ‘sniper/match’ rounds.  All 3 groups were very consistent, two of which were within .001 size differential.  They do shoot the same, but the inherent accuracy wasn’t tight enough for me to consider these as my ‘go to’ round.

Small:  1.07 inches

Large:  1.30 inches

Avg:  1.22 inches

Federal 168gr Premium HPBT Match:  Not happy AT all….my rifle doesn’t like this round; surprising, in that it likes other 168’s.  I really thought this round would be at the top of the 168 crowd….

Small:  0.90 inches

Large:  1.5 inches

Avg:  1.2 inches

 

 

Right Now….TODAY….at PSA, You Can Get an AR Kit for UNDER $300

Here.

WHAT IN BLUE BLAZES ARE YOU WAITING FOR??!!??

Ammo is cheaper than it ever has been, so are magazines.  So are replacement parts.  So are upgrades.

Don’t get me wrong; I love my Yugo M48 and my other rifles, but if I gotta defend hearth and home, I’d really rather have an AR with about 4,000 rounds of barrier blind ammo and about 20 mags…..along with another couple thousand practice rounds and some range time.

Get thee hence and upgrade your ‘survival’ armory.

First Range Report – Savage Model 10 FCP-SR and Primary Arms 4-14 ACSS FFP Illuminated ACSS-HUD-DMR-308

Years ago I used to have a very, very accurate Remington 700 Sendero in .300 Win Mag.  I sold it some years ago and replaced it with a Savage 10 with the 4-14 ACSS scope in 7.62 NATO.  While I miss the long range accuracy of that .300 Win, I’ve not been disappointed with the Savage.

Two weeks ago I took it to a square indoor range and put 30 rounds down the tube to see what kind of groups I might expect without making any adjustments to the rifle or glass.  The only ammo I had on had was some Fiocchi 165gr Sierra HPBT Game King, which is a great hunting round.  I’m fond of the 165gr as a general purpose  bullet as it performs very well out to about 700m, and the Game King is designed as a purposeful hollow point.

I was ok with the results; best group, once it was sighted in, was just about an inch at 50m; so 2 inches at 100 is fine for hunting, however, my projected application for the Savage is to distract and disrupt a ‘zombie apocalypse’ against my neighborhood.

As I hadn’t shot this rifle, admittedly, I did things backwards.  All I did to prep it was to patch the barrel and check the optics for solid mounting.  After I shot it and came home, I took it completely apart, cleaned it, and then used a torque driver to tighten the action screws to the recommended inch pound setting from Savage.

I went back to a square outdoor range with 3 different brands of ammunition in two weights:  168 & 175gr – two with Sierra HPBT Matchking projectiles and one set with Berger projectiles.

All shots from the bench, cool to warm barrel, no cleaning between groups, 100 meters, temperature around 80f, partly cloudy, humidity about 75%.

Suffice it to say that the results, with much higher quality ammunition and having the rifle prepped made quite the difference!

This is the result:

Berger Match Grade 308 Winchester Ammo 175 Grain Open Tip Match Tactical 

This was the most accurate (and most expensive) rounds used in my Inherent Accuracy Test, Phase 1.  As you can see, it’s pretty good ammo.  The small squares are 1/4 inch X 1/4 inch, and this is a really good just under or at 1/2 inch group.  The Berger rounds use the best of everything, to include Lapua brass, match projectiles, special power blends, and match primers.  It shows.  But they’re spendy.  Between $1.30 and $1.50 a round, depending on where you get them, and that doesn’t include shipping!  Add another .40 to .60 a round after shipping.  Sometimes you can get free shipping if you buy lots of 200 rounds.  That may come later for me if I choose these as my primary, but even so, they’re expensive!  That’s about $30 a box or more.

Next up is Federal Gold Medal 308 Winchester 175gr Sierra HPBT Match King.  This group was just over a half inch but under 3/4’s of an inch.  The price point difference between this and the Berger is significant, at about $7 a box cheaper than the Berger.  The Federal rounds are also top quality, with the same Sierra bullet, ‘virgin’ brass (so described by Federal) proprietary powder mix, and really consistent primers.

The Federal is less expensive by quite a bit, ranging from .92 to $1.70 per round (this price had a free shipping note so long as you purchase 200 rounds).  The range is a lot wider, but at the least expensive end, adding shipping to the cost makes it about $1.50 or so a round, or $25 a box, and with the eye of a coupon shopper, you can probably get these for less than $20 a box, shipped.

Last, but certainly not least, as the ammo is MOA capable, is Fiocchi’s submission to the 175gr match market.  Titled, ‘Fiocchi Exacta Rifle Match,’ it’s performance was acceptable, though a bit disappointment as it is about the same price as the Federal, which performed clearly better in this test.

I have some IMI 175gr BTHP SMK OTM Razor Core Match coming, so this portion of the test won’t be complete until that gets expended.

After the 175gr performance comparison is complete, I’m going to do 168 gr as well, same brands (except Berger, as they don’t make 168’s), same conditions as much as possible.  I’m including the 168’s as potential ‘go to’ ammo as I was weaned on them back in the day, and I wouldn’t fee right not giving them a chance.

Stay tuned.