The Definitive Firearms Thread

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Re: The Definitive Firearms Thread

Dont forget, however, gun safety.  Especially if children are present.  A bit of inconvenience can prevent tragedy.  Practice good habits.  Stay safe.

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Re: The Definitive Firearms Thread

Aaron Moyer - I really appreciate you taking the time to provide an overview of guns.  Like many others, I have little knowledge about personal security weapons, ammunition and training and you have helped fill in many gaps.

What do you think about the revolvers that fire .410 shotgun shells?  A guy at the local gun shop suggested this is the ultimate home safety weapon for closed quarters - especially at night.  I feel more comfortable with my Sig Sauer but can see the possible benefits.

I am taking from your posts that the model 1911 pistol is very durable and that ammunition should not be a problem down the road.  These are fairly inexpensive guns and I'm thinking I should get.

You also mentioned the AK and other rifles that I had considered to be assulat weapons intended for human targets (I didn't know that these can also be used for hunting).  Which one do you think is the best?

Larry   

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Re: The Definitive Firearms Thread

Plantguy90,

You're 100% spot on. Take care, and above all else - educate your chilluns' if you decide to have guns.
Don't allow curiosity to overwhelm their judgement, make sure they know where the line is drawn, and how to conduct themselves around firearms.

Larry, Thanks for the kind words!

On the "Thunder Five"
The revolvers that fire either .45Colt (also refered to as Long Colt - a misnomer) or .410 shotshells is the "Thunder Five".

In my opinion, there are several attributes of this pistol that make it "less" than idea than your current Sig (which is an outstanding brand of pistol).

First, the weight. They're very heavy, and while this may not seem like much of a consideration now, it would be extremely awkward to fire it while injured, or with only one hand. Last I read, 68% of injuries in gun fights are appendicular, and effect your ability to shoot.

Second, the .410 is a good enough shell, but neither it, nor .45 Colt are common these days.

Finally, I don't know of any holsters for this particular weapon, and if you can't carry it, it's only good to you for a "bump in the night" situation. The caveat to that is if you have a rifle or shotgun available, that's a much better option. If it was your only pistol, you'd be limited to 5 shots, and reloading would take you 5-10 seconds as opposed to 1-3.

I wouldn't spend the money on it personally. I had a friend who had one... he didn't keep it long.

On the "1911"
The 1911 is an excellent pistol - however - various people have tried to make 1911's (designed for fighting) into "IPSC" guns (Guns for gaming). In the last 20 years, "race guns" have flooded the markets, and a lot of modifications have been made to the "standard" 1911. While these make it more "accurate" or "easier to shoot" in some cases, they have the unwanted side effect of negatively effecting reliability.

My advice on 1911's is buy Springfield, Colt or Kimber with Confidence. I've heard mixed reports with Rock Island and Charles Daly, but I haven't personally had any experience with them. My Kimbers and Springfields have always been excellent shooters and accurate.

If you decide to go with a 1911 - do thourough research before you modify it. Changes worth making:
- Dove Tail grip safety (Prevents "pinching" of the web of the hand)
- Adjustable skeletonized trigger (Allows you to set the "trigger weight" for a harder or softer pull - less than 3lbs is dangerous!)
- Tapered magazine well - also known as a Mag funnel or jet funnel. Because 1911 magazines are "single stack", the top does not taper. With double stack semi-autos, this reduces headway space, and allows the magazine to be inserted with "less" accuracy - for when your hands are shaking and feel like flippers. A tapered magazine well on a 1911 will help you reload with more efficiency under stress.
- Skeletonized hammer - Gives a wider bredth for cocking/decocking the pistol. Especially helpful with gloves.

Stay away from:
- Polished feed ramps; this is for gamers. It'll compact most variety of hollow-points, making them dangerous to fire. This modification is for guns that primarially shoot wadcutters for accuracy.
- Lowered Ejection ports; this is really a "no-account" modification that people get because they "hear" it's great. In reality, all it does is make your brass fly to a more consistent spot on the ground.

On "Assault Rifles"
This is a can of worms I tend to stay away from. There are a lot of sacred cows, and people tend to come from miles away for an AR versus AK debate. Personally, I think any modern rifle that's been adopted by more than 5 countries for military service is an "acceptable" choice. This excludes the Mini-14, which was temporarially adopted by the Irish and the Panamanian Marines. Both were dumped in favor of M16A1's.

-The Mini, Kel-Tec SU16 and other "plinking" rifles will not hold up to the stresses of a SHTF environment.

-The Steyr AUG, Daewoo DR series and GALIL rifles WILL hold up, but are very difficult to find replacement parts or magazines for.

Because of those reasons, my "list" prioritized would be:
1. M4 Carbine - easy to use, common, magazines and ammunition are everywhere, lightweight, reliable and durable.
Stick with 5.56mm. A rack grade rifle should shoot near 1.5 minute of angle, which is exceptionally good accuracy for a "fighting rifle". The ballistics are nearly flat from 50-300 yards, so once it's zero'd, there isn't a lot of guess work with accuracy.
Disadvantages: High Price, small caliber that cannot be "legally" used for hunting in some states.

2. AK Variant - All the same things as the AR, with the disadvantage of having a shorter sight radius (marginally less accurate) and being less ergonomic (Less instinctive operations for: changing magazines, and working safety - no last round bolt catch). Ballistics on the 7.62x39 (47(M)/103/104 models) is more of an "arc"... takes some getting used to in order to be "accurate" past 150 yards - but is still doable. Larger bullet and better energy make it easier for busting "cover" into Conealment".
Has the advantage over the AR in terms of reliability and durability. These rifles are RUGGED. I've owned 6, and never had a single problem. Less expensive than the AR, and ammo is cheaper at present.

3. FN-FAL - A full size battle rifle with a lot of the Ergonomic advantages of the AR series - very easy to manipulate, will fire a wide variety of ammunition, accepts 20 round magazines (can take 5 round magazines for hunting) and fires the larger .308 round - which is very accurate, and maintains energy quite a bit farther than the 5.56mm.
Disadvantages: Gas system can be adjusted, causing confusion for some shooters. Harmonics cause "barrel whip" in the longer (20") models. Compromises accuracy some. Sights are difficult to use.

4. HK G3/CETME - Full sized battle rifle comparable to the FN-FAL. Uses a "Roller locker" system that is extremely reliable, and is notorious for firing all types of ammunition.
Disadvantages: Horrible ergonomics - safety is "upside down" compared to conventional designs, charging handle is about 2 feet forward, and takes an act of congress to get a hold of. No last round bolt catch. Reciever damage can "bind" Roller locker system, causing a malfunction that requires an armorer.

5. M14 - Full sized battle rifle that fires the .308 from 20 round detachable magazines. I'd place this rifle "higher" than the G3 any day - as it's easier to use, has better iron sights. The only "X" Factor is almost all the M14's on the market are actually Springfield Armory "M1A" rifles, and are only rated to use 7.62x51mm Military 147gr ball ammunition. If you use different types, you risk a catastrophic malfunction that could injure or kill the shooter. The Fulton Armory M14's are "military spec" and are great quality - but cost around $2000. A FAL or a G3 will cost between $600-1200 for a good quality rifle.

Anyway, I can't say which one is "better", but the above is "my" experience with the most common military rifles we use/see in the military today.

I hope this helps.

Cheers!

Aaron

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Re: The Definitive Firearms Thread
coolhandluke wrote:

Anyone heard about this training facility?

 

http://www.frontsight.com/

 

Lucas

I did their 4 day defensive handgun class - amazing. Well worth the effort.

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Re: The Definitive Firearms Thread

Hey Aaron,

How about some dissent on calibre then.

First I agree that precision tops calibre. I agree on your handgun and calibre choice. I own a .44 magnum shooting Desert Eagle. Its amazing how this pistol can handle such a heavy calibre, with such precision. I can even speed fire it with one hand. Yet a clip only holds 8 rounds, and I need 2 hands for precision. Your remark on 68% hits on extremities hits the mark.

I own a HK G3. Yep, your right on all acounts. It chews up all kinds of ammo. The darn thing doesn't warn me that my magazine is empty, and that unanticipated "click", feels like a slap in the face. Gives you a feeling that you can get caught with your pants down. Don't know about the ergonomics, maybe I've gotten used to it. Roller locker system, yeah, got to spray it and clean it quite often.

But I think you may be overlooking one thing, and that is the type of battle. You describe certain types of battle. In your mind you seem to envision an armed mob around your house. I really don't think this will ever be a big problem or even THE biggest problem you may ever face.. Article II of the bill of rights, is in place to prevent usurpation by the government. "The strongest reason for the people to retain
the right to keep and bear arms is, as a last resort, to protect
themselves against tyranny in Government."
-- Thomas Jefferson, Author of The Declaration of Independence, and President of the United States.

In such an event you will face swarms of sheeple with guns and body armour. You, together with your like-minded friends will have to defend by geurrilla warfare. You do not take on swarms with body armour, with close range 5,56. You take some of the tactics of the founding fathers. You sneek up with telescopic sights, preferably in the dark. Not closer than necessary. You shoot a bullet with long range and big impact, and make your escape, you wear them down. When Brazilian police want to approach the Rio favelas, bullets already start flying at a 1000 meters away.

When the police succeed in getting into a favela, its mostly handguns and machineguns. If shooting the 9m, I would prefere the machinegun. If up against a handgun as a government official with body armour, I think I would be less happy about a .44 magnum, than a 9mm.

Pablo

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Re: The Definitive Firearms Thread

Hey Aaron, 

2 things:

1) I am a big fan of those A-zoom snap caps; a bit pricey, but worth getting for those newbie shooters like myself.  A-zooms are commercial dummy rounds so you can practice loading, cycling and dry-firing your firearm safely.  They come in packs of 2, although I'd say get as many as your magazine will hold, up to 10 for me, and that way you can mess around safely.  I know reloaders can make their own, but if you are a reloader you probably know a heck of a lot more about firearms and have shot much more than me.

2) I asked the guys over on the M14 forum about your warnings about the Springfield M1A, as that was and so far the answer is that they can shoot most .308win ammunition up to 175gr. safely, the problem comes with magnum loads (stay away).  The guys there are mostly current and ex-military, and very knowledgeable.  They also suggested searching on their forum (308, 308win) as they have discussed this issue in many threads.

 

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Re: The Definitive Firearms Thread

I wanted to put forth some commentary concerning the effectiveness of the 12 guage shotgun. If a person has only one gun ;it should be a shotgun. period. No other weapon has the ability to fire the wide variety of ammo avail for the 12ga. slugs, buckshot,birdshot, lockbusters, non lethal rds, flechettes, noisemakers the list goes on, and on. And for practical purposes a shotgun allows a hunter to take birds or large game by simply changing ammo. It is a true survivalist's weapon.

As far as home defense, the 12gauge is at the top of the list. With a load of buckshot the aim does not have to be precise. At typical encounter ranges- 7yds or less the point of aim does not have to be exactly on target for a kill shot. Even birdshot at close range will take down most large mammals. In additon, with a properly placed shotgun slug you can kill anything from an elephant on down.

With a pistol or rifle, the aim must be precise or a shooter will completely miss the target, even at close ranges, there are many examples of LE and criminals in close -proximity of each other emptying their weapons- with zero rounds on target...  an inch off and you are shooting air.

The 12 gauge has considerable "knock down power" and a full load  of buckshot on target at 20yds and in will take out even a biker on pcp. At closer ranges, think the hallway in your dwelling a 12 gauge  will cause massive damage.(cut biker in half) A shotgun will give the untrained person a better chance to make a hit on any target-moving or stationary during a high stress situation.

Pump vs. semi auto- Many experts suggest a pump shotgun due to the fact that if a round fails to fire, one can rack the slide and try another. Good advice. However under stress people forget to rack the slide. So a semi auto could be a better choice. If a person is using factory ammo(from a quality manufacturer) a semi-auto will function without a hitch, and malfunctions can be cleared quickly .With a high volume of shooting a semi auto will need more cleaning and parts replacement but most people never come close to shooting that much.( Shoot it a few times and put away)

If one decides to carry a weapon daily( good idea) find a pistol that fits and shoot it, but keep the shotgun handy, with surefire flashlight for home defense. A person needs a great light and surefire are the best. get their batteries too-cheaper.

Also wanted to respond to the type of crisis most of us could face, especially urban residents. During the aftermath of a disaster- be it natural or man made(terrorist attack) or quite possibly the breakdown of society due to economic meltdown- someone will try to take your stuff- this situation is very likely, and has happened in the past, with Hurricanes, riots etc. That's when you need that 12 guage shotgun.

Wanted to also comment on the M1A- I have a couple both springfields one short barrel and the other match grade, Shoot them all the time and have used all types of hunting bullets as well as mil spec ball ammo. great guns. Never had a serious malfunction, all minor due to magazine spring failures. A "slamfire" what the maufacturers warn consumers about, but I am not sure if an actual cause has been determined. It is generally attributed to having a free floating firing pin and/or broken firing pin or obstruction. It can happen with any type of semi-/full auto weapon, esp. the older open-bolt machineguns. But is relatively rare.

 In closing- all of you should have a pistol, rifle and shotgun. There is simply no good reason not to. Sell the golf clubs, buy some guns and go to the range. It's great fun and practical too.

 After all, a golf course is merely a waste of a good rifle range.

 

LT

 

 

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Re: The Definitive Firearms Thread

Pablo Eagle,

Welcome and thanks for the post!
With regards to the "type" of warfare, let's just say that I can only "speculate".
For those who are in a more "rural" setting, I think a Battle Rifle would serve better - as the scenario you bring up is more likely there. Anti-hording laws, non-regulated livestock laws and a gamut of other unconstitutional laws could "target" rural farmers subsistence farmers.

That said, when it comes to tactics and strategy, I think it's best to be fluid, and evolve with the situation.

Obviously, an ideal situation would be no conflict at all.

PlantGuy90, Larry,

That's interesting to hear regarding the M1A's. I think they're fine rifles, but given that there is a "possibility" that they will kB (blow up) on you with scavenged ammunition, it's probably best to look towards other rifles. If you already own them, and have ammo for them, there really is no reason to move away from them, as the possibility is low. I've seen some pretty severe malfunctions with M1A's in the past, but Springfield had an era of spotty quality control, and those products were during that time frame.

Larry,

We definately disagree on the topic of shotguns, but we're "100%" in agreement on a few statements as well.

Quote:

Pump vs. semi auto- Many experts suggest a pump shotgun due to the fact that if a round fails to fire, one can rack the slide and try another. Good advice. However under stress people forget to rack the slide. So a semi auto could be a better choice. If a person is using factory ammo(from a quality manufacturer) a semi-auto will function without a hitch, and malfunctions can be cleared quickly .With a high volume of shooting a semi auto will need more cleaning and parts replacement but most people never come close to shooting that much.( Shoot it a few times and put away)

Availability of Factory ammo is my concern with this statement. If we're talking about an "honest" collapse, factory ammo might not be available for a long time, if ever. Using "homespun" ammo might mean the difference between being able to defend your home/put food on the table, or being overrun/starving.

Especially for newer shooters, I'd recommend a pump action. I'm an old hand with a shotgun, and I still prefer a pump.
One possible exception to this is the Saiga-12, which would be a great choice regardless. Solves quite a few of the shotguns "inherant" flaws.

Quote:

The 12 gauge has considerable "knock down power" and a full load  of buckshot on target at 20yds and in will take out even a biker on pcp. At closer ranges, think the hallway in your dwelling a 12 gauge  will cause massive damage.(cut biker in half) A shotgun will give the untrained person a better chance to make a hit on any target-moving or stationary during a high stress situation.

I know it seems "counter-intuitive" but there is zero - no - knockdown power with any load.

Knockdown power is a mythical concept that has roots in reality.

For example, have you ever sat on something sharp, like a tack? Or had someone prick you with a pin unexpectedly?

Did you jump away?

If you did - it wasn't because of the "force" of the pin striking you - it's the mental aversion to pain we all have hardwired into our brains. We "react" to the pain, and sometimes that pain forces people to fall over... but sometimes it causes them to go berserk. Some people don't even realize they're shot for quite some time.

So with a shotgun, your 'main' advantage is to create a wound vast enough to induce shock.
On people jacked up on PCP, Meth or even Adrenaline, it may not be possible to overwhelm them easily... not to say the shotgun isn't a viable tool - it certainly is, but if there are 3 or 4 guys jacked up on drugs and each requires two shells to stop - that's between 6 and 8 shells... which empties your weapon.

Regardless of what anyone chooses, train hard! Your life could depend on it.
If you choose a shotgun, Train for:
Quick Reloading
Breachloading,
Topping off
Transitioning to a pistol.

As far as "inexperienced" shooters being more accurate with the shotgun, I believe this too is a falsehood.

The shotgun is a very intimidating weapon for someone who is "new" to shooting. It takes big shells, unlike anything you might see in a rifle or pistol, it makes real loud noises and it kicks much harder.

Flinch is probably the single greatest enemy of accuracy - and most people fear the perceived pain caused by recoil and flinch when they're shooting shotguns.

Anyway - just some thoughts.

Cheers! Thank you all for your comments!

Aaron

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Re: The Definitive Firearms Thread

Aaron (and others): Not to side track this conversation, but I seek your sagacious advice.

I know that a few books have been mentioned and perhaps I'm missing one of them now, but I was wondering if you could make a recommendation for a book that assists you in preparing to defend your home and also one that discusses what to consider when carrying a weapon in a world where crime and civil unrest might be more prevalent.

Basically, I'd hope to find a book or books that can discuss tactics in the scenarios but also provide some first hand case studies or accounts of specific incidents. Much of the talk we've had has been somewhat theoretical in the sense that I don't think any of us has personally had to defend against a horde of meth addicts. I'd like to read about and hear analysis of actual case studies and a discussion of empirical evidence of what works and what doesn't.

Thanks to all for the great discussion thus far.

Mike

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Re: The Definitive Firearms Thread

Mike -

Okay, so I poached the question you put to Aaron.  I am reading Massad Ayoob's "The Gun Digest Book of Concealed Carry".  Great book - very thorough coverage of CC issues and concerns.  Runs the spectrum from equipment and tactics, to the legal end.

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Re: The Definitive Firearms Thread

yes, I was looking at getting that one as well...Ayoob seems to be a prominent author in this area

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Re: The Definitive Firearms Thread

Aaron,

I wanted to delve into the "knockdown" issue. Perhaps stopping power is a more accurate word to describe the effects of firearms upon organic targets. However, I have "knocked down" quite a organic targets with rifles, pistols and shotguns, and a stick on occasion. For example ,not long ago I shot a small whitetail deer with a 30'06, and the impact knocked the deer back and the bullet took it off its feet with the end result being four feet pointed at the sky several feet from bullet impact and some perfect protein in the freezer. Also last year, I shot a ten foot alligator in the head at about 5 yards with a 12 gauge and the result was a fist size hole through a super hard target(full choke,buckshot, 3"mag). I have many other examples. I am not sure if you call it knockdown power or stopping power, but quite impressive to say the least. A lesser caliber with perfect shot placement would have never caused such a devastating wound. On the other hand, I have center punched a large male whitetail with a 30'06 and had to track it for 300yds...

But I have never had any creature run away after being shot with a 12 gauge within effective range. And very rarely if ever had to put a second shot in.

I was also under the impression that the reason that the reason the military went to the 1911 was the lack of knockdown/stopping power of the 38special revolvers during an incident in Manila in which the Moro warriors would not go down unless hit multiple times with the 38, so a replacement was sought. The 1911 served with honour for many years until someone decided to go with the M9 Beretta.. not bad but no 1911 that's for sure. Although some military units still utilize the 1911, in advanced configuration, such as Marine Force Recon. I have also heard some Army units also use it, such as Delta. For several reasons, accuracy and knockdown power.

Interesting you mention the Saiga-12, quite an interesting piece...basically a AK 12 gauge shotgun. I am in the process of testing and modifying some for 3 gun and home defense, they come with a mount for scopes and 10/13 rd mags are avail, also 20 rd drums. Makes for a super fast reload that's for sure.

I am certain that I can never convince you to accept any of my alternative theories, because you like me have fired many rds downrange and decided long ago what works, but I enjoy the debate, and we agree on the most important aspect of self defense or a good offense-

TRAIN as much as possible.

Again excellent thread ;a topic that I feel many people should be educated on.

 

Larry

 

 "You boys gonna pull them pistols, or whistle Dixie?" ......Josey Wales

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Re: The Definitive Firearms Thread

Mike,

Thanks for the kind words - In terms of books, I can't give much advice. Most of my experience came from classes, or official training events. There are many books availavble though - let me us all know if you pick any up and what you make of them.

Larry,

Quote:

I I wanted to delve into the "knockdown" issue. Perhaps stopping power is a more accurate word to describe the effects of firearms upon organic targets. However, I have "knocked down" quite a organic targets with rifles, pistols and shotguns, and a stick on occasion.

While there *is* some transfer of energy, all those things derive from a combination of shock, hydro-static damage to tissue and bullet placement. WIth larger caliber rounds, like the .30-'06, or .308, there is often a better "mix" of velocity and bullet mass - which does increase lethality. No doubt about it. So we're "eye to eye" on that issue.
This can be chalked up to "stopping power" - and I'm cool with using the term, but not at the expense of placement. =)
Quote:

But I have never had any creature run away after being shot with a 12 gauge within effective range. And very rarely if ever had to put a second shot in.

Again - we're on the same page. Within its effective range, the 12 gauge is an excellent tool - however, it's "effective range" is limited when compared to other tools. All things considered, the main point I'm trying to impress is consider the benefits and disadvantages based on your situation, and projected "worst case scenarios".
Shotguns would probably be adaquete for scaring off a few evil doers, but they have self-limiting characteristics for other scenarios.
The Saiga 12 is like the FS-2000 - it's the "exception" to the rules. I think it'd make an "good" addition to any survivors tool-box, but at the same time, I still believe because it's limited by Range and Shot pattern, that the "same" problems could be solved nearly as effectively with a Remington 870 or Mossberg 500.
I definately see your points, and I think you've got great input - thank you for sharing and brining them up!
Often, I try and be "objective" because there are so many "possible" situations. So I think we're probably on the same page.
My main question to readers is "What suits YOU, and how do you KNOW?"
For most people, a simple hunting rifle would probably suffice.
Cheers!
Aaron
PS - you dropped a line from one of my favorite movies.
Great flick!
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Re: The Definitive Firearms Thread

I'm no expert (barely a marksman) but I have my ex's old 22 mountain eagle target handgun.  It was cheap (actually free), comes with a 15 bullet clip, and the ammo is very inexpensive.

I figure if TSHTF, at least I would have something.  Currently I have a gun lock on it and it is unloaded.

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Re: The Definitive Firearms Thread

dickey,

Go get some ammo, and practice, practice, practice-.22's are great guns for hunting and can be used in defense if necessary- much better than throwing rocks.

Shoot it enough and it will be a familiar tool-an extension of your hand...

LT

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Re: The Definitive Firearms Thread

Aaron,

I think we are on the same page-many solutions are available to solve problems.

again excellent info from you, perhaps a discussion could be started about mindset. It appears that many members do not really understand the depths of violence humans are capable of...and what it takes to protect themselves. A reading list?

Sun Tzu- The Art of War., The Book of Five Rings, 93 Confirmed Kills,Charles Henderson, Real World Survival, What has worked for Me- Walt Rauch, Guns, Bullets,and Gunfights:Lessons and Tales from a Modern-day gunfighter-Jim Cirillo and about anything written by Col. Jeff Cooper

However, reading books is no substitute for going to the range/taking a class/ shooting matches, but these books can give beginners something to think about, actually these books can give us all something to think about.

Train- now not later, and realize the better physical condition you are in- the better overall shooter you will be.

 

LT

 

 

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Re: The Definitive Firearms Thread

 What the 2nd Amendment is for, wait for her last line,

Greg

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Re: The Definitive Firearms Thread

Thank you, Greg.

I also liked the point she made about preferring to be in jail with a felony offense rather than having her parents dead. It is obvious that the system is unfair when we are sometimes forced to make a choice between our security/safety and the option of staying out of jail. That is a choice that I don't think any person in a free country should have to make.

"The strongest reason for the
people to retain the right to keep and bear arms is, as a last resort, to
protect themselves against tyranny in government.
" --- Thomas Jefferson

"The beauty of the
second amendment is that it will not be needed until they try to take
it.
" --- Thomas Jefferson

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Re: The Definitive Firearms Thread

Obama to Seek New Assault Weapons Ban

The Ban Expired in 2004 During the Bush Administration.

"As President Obama indicated during the campaign, there are just a few
gun-related changes that we would like to make, and among them would be
to reinstitute the ban on the sale of assault weapons,"

http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/story?id=6960824&page=1

I'll bet, just a few.

Greg

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Re: The Definitive Firearms Thread

Greg,

Love the video of Dr. Gratia. She says an awful lot with only a few minutes of speaking.

Insofar as Eric Holder's assertion that "sophisticated American guns" are faciliatating "cartels employing automatic weapons and grenades" I can only ask:

When was the last goddamn time you saw a grenade in a gunshop?

These weapons are coming from the SOUTHERN border - it's been common knowledge since as early as the 1970's that rebels from South America were smuggling guns up from Columbia and other nations.

The Mexicans' inability to get their act together shouldn't have any bearing on AMERICAN civil liberties.

I see this as an outright attack on our soverignty, dignity and constitution.

Intolerable.

Aaron

PS - Buy them now, and just say "No".

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Mike Pilat
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Re: The Definitive Firearms Thread

Quick question to anyone out there:

Can the AR-15 shoot .223 ammunition as well as the 5.56mm? Does anyone foresee any ammunition issues if these guns are banned? Any recommendations on add-ons, options, etc to look for when getting an AR-15? Any further practical issue would be welcome!

Also, as I understand it the "Hydra Shok" ammo is the "cop killer" variety and might be attacked...I've seen some online, but lately some places have been getting sold out. Thoughts on this???

Thanks.

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Aaron M
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Re: The Definitive Firearms Thread

Mike,

a 5.56 can chamber a .223, but not the other way around.

The 5.56mm NATO cartridge is a higher pressure cartridge, and is quite a bit more powerful.
It's my belief that it will be common and available in our lifetimes.

Most AR's are chambered for 5.56mm.

Several other rifles are not - or were not last I heard:

Kel Tec SU-16 and Mini-14's stand out in my mind.

Cheers!

Aaron

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Aaron M
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Re: The Definitive Firearms Thread

Double post

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Re: The Definitive Firearms Thread

Greg,

Thanks for the vid.  Being from Texas, I was aware of the event and Dr. Gratia's actions afterword in our state legislature.  However, I had never seen that clip.  Brave American that speaks eloquently to the issue.

Aaron,

Buy them now, and just say, "No".  Absolutely, I have made clear to my friends and my family that this is a line in the sand for me.

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bbobwat33
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Re: The Definitive Firearms Thread

first time post!

so, there's no question in my mind if you're going to own one gun, it should be a 12 gauge pump shotgun. there's alot of good one's out there. aaron mentioned the remington 870. that's a great gun. probably will never jam if you take care of it. mossberg and winchester make some great shotguns too. the reason shotguns are great is you can prettymuch bring down anything with legs with one. you can shoot anything from squirrels to grizzlies with a 12 gauge(there are different shotshells for different game, for small game like quail, dove, squirrel, and rabbit, you'd shoot #8-#6 shoot. for large game and self defense you'd shoot buckshot or slugs, etc.) . all bird hunting is done with a shotgun. modern shotgun sluggs enable you the shoot out to 100 yards with a smooth bore barrel. (standard shotgun barrel). 

as far as learning how to shoot or finding a place to shoot, i think you should make an effort to find some people in your area that shoot. if you live in a rural area, i'm sure there's probably some "good ole boys" down the road that would really get a kick out helping someone learn to shoot. and they've probably got a place to shoot that's not going to cost you anything to go there. also this would be a good opportunity to reach out into your community and build some bridges.

i know some people we're worried about the range of a shotgun. as i said above a shotgun can throw a slug accurately out to a 100 yards. now i've shot alot of game in life and i'll shoot alot more. i shot a doe at 475 yards about 5 years ago. she ran about 10 yds.(my farthest shot so far) killed several deer in the 200 to 400 yard range. but i know that 90% percent of the game i've taken has been within 100yds. probably 50 percent has been within 50 yds. i deer hunt with a rifle. always have always will. but the truth is a could have taken most of those deer with a shotgun. i could have feed myself with a shotgun. if you can afford or are in the maket for your own little arsenal, then buy a shotgun, rifle, and a pistol. but if you can't afford or only plan on having one gun. then by all means get a shotgun. 

just my opinion

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Aaron M
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Re: The Definitive Firearms Thread

Mike,

Sorry for my last post being terse and redundant. I tried to fire off a reply while I had company.
Your questions, itemized for ease of address:

Quote:

1. Can the AR-15 shoot .223 ammunition as well as the 5.56mm?
2. Does anyone foresee any ammunition issues if these guns are banned?
3. Any recommendations on add-ons, options, etc to look for when getting an AR-15?
4. Any further practical issue would be welcome! 
5. Also, as I understand it the "Hydra Shok" ammo is the "cop killer" variety and might be attacked...I've seen some online, but lately some places have been getting sold out. Thoughts on this???

1. AR vs Caliber
Any and all AR's that claim to be "Mil Spec" (none actually are - the civilian ones are all semi-automatic) will be chambered for the 5.56mm, which is a little longer, and a good bit higher pressure. A "Good" AR will have several features;
-A staked Gas key - it'll look like this, notice the "Divits" above the nuts. This view is a "top down" view of the bolt carrier.
Staked Gas key

- A Chrome lined 4140 Barrel; most are 1/9 twist rate which will in some cases NOT fire the heavier 75-77gr 5.56/.223 ammunition commercially available. However, it will accurately shoot the ultra lightweight 45gr "varmit rounds". Personally, I would try and find a 1/7 barrel, but all "mil surplus" ammunition is 55gr or 62gr. Either way is acceptable as long as the barrel is chrome lined. This will greatly extend your rifles service life.

- Magnetic Particle Inspected parts - this is a quality control measure used to ensure that the rifle is "tight" from the factory forward. Some mfgs do this, some do not. While not a "feature", it's a nice insurance policy.

2. Ammunition
Ammo issues may be the route the government takes in order to "prohibit" firearms ownership. Obama proposed a tax when he was an illinois senator to increase tax on ammo and weapons that was 500%. I skimmed the bill, though I don't recall the specifics. For the reloaders out there - it included store bought powder.

2a. More likely, we'll see another ban on high capacity magazines. MagPul "PMAGS" (the industry standard for great AR mags)

 are already backordered for 3-6 months. If you buy an AR (or any magazine fed rifle) Prioritize magazines and ammo! My advice is be ready to spend an amount of 50% or > of the cost of the rifle divided on magazines and ammunition. Have no fewer than 7 Magazines, and if you can find it, buy XM193 55gr Ball ammunition. It's not cheap - but it's a solid investment. Mine has increased in value faster than Gold.

3. Add ons! My favorite subject!
There are almost ZERO add ons that will make your rifle "tactical" - that's your job.
However, there are several things that can truly give you the edge in shooting or fighting with your longarm.

Optics and Illumination:
Keep in mind that I wouldn't personally suggest you invest in Optics until you have a fundemental mastery of your iron sights, or you have very poor vision, and likewise, using a light has to come on the tail end of education in it's proper use - otherwise it's a beacon for the badguys to shoot at:

3a. OPTICS
Optics typically come in two varieties - red dot and magnified. For the AR system, there are almost unlimited options.
That said, following our rule of "good is not cheap and cheap is not good", in my experience there are only three "real" choices for a "fighting" scope:

EOTech 552/555 REV F - Runs on AA batteries and is lightning fast for target aquisition. Run time is lower than the Aimpoint, at around 250 hours - but it runs on batteries that are more common and often rechargable. Extreme cold will adversely effect your batt. life. The EOTech comes with a built in mount, and typically costs around $475
[IMG]http://i208.photobucket.com/albums/bb31/Ronin556/EOTECH.jpg[/IMG]

Aimpont M2/M3 (M68) - Available in 2 and 4 MOA red dots, the Aimpoint is standard issue for combat arms units on their M4's. It uses the same, both eyes open, "Heads up" target aquisition (Bindon Aiming Concept, or BAC) as the EOTech. The primary difference is the reticle uses only one 2 or 4 MOA dot rather than the larger ring with a small dot. While it's sometimes harder to pick up on and can be too large at long range, the battery life on the M3 is in excess of 500,000 hours... Which is why I chose it. The Aimpoint require a mount to be bought, and typically costs around $450 - mounts range from $75-250. "package Deals" can be found here at excellent prices: www.gggaz.com 
[IMG]http://i208.photobucket.com/albums/bb31/Ronin556/Aimpoint.jpg[/IMG]

- TRIJICON ACOG TA Series - This is a "magnified" fighting scope, and in my opinion, the finest available. It's also expensive. A New Model TA01NSN is typically around $1000, so it's not the most economical choice. It is also a bit slower until you become used to the "Height over bore" compensation (Difference in where you aim, related to where the bullet goes at close range).
[IMG]http://i208.photobucket.com/albums/bb31/Ronin556/ACOGTA01.jpg[/IMG]

3b. Illumination - a flashlight is an instrumental tool in dealing with home defense or room clearing situations. Not only does it have the potential to blind targets (who may not be hostile) it creates a "wall" in darkness, which can disorient a person on the receiving end. It's also a target indicator of the guy using it - and it will also effect your night vision.

I am a huge fan of Surefire flashlights - the quality is excellent and their lights are robust. If you get a "non LED" light, make sure you upgrade to a shock isolated bezel. Ask questions for further specfics on lights!

With regards to slings - don't worry about being fancy. Use the military two point. It's the most common, cheapest, and can be used to great effect. Here is a transition to pistol using a 2pt sling, not much slower than the guys who just "drop" their rifle and leave it to dangle:

Bipods, lasers, rails and foregrips are just items to sell. Training will negate them, and should!

Once you've reached proficiency - if you'd like the luxury - consider those things then!

5. The entire "cop killer" bullet phoenomonon was unleashed upon the world by the Lethal Weapon movies.
It's a total fabrication, as what it referes to is penetration of ballistic vests, which come in a variety of "ratings" or protection values, some of which aren't very protective. Conversely, ALL rifle calibers will punch through Kevlar vests without plates - so by their logic "all" rifles rounds are "cop killers".
Hollow points are made to expand and kill all people - and the cops carry them too.
We don't call them "citizen killers" - but that's what they are.

I distrust language.

Cheers, and I hope this helps,

Aaron

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ccpetersmd
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Posts: 799
Re: The Definitive Firearms Thread

Aaron (and others), could you provide some specific advice?

I am thinking about adding to our "arsenal", which, at this point comprises three BB-guns and a beautiful .22 Winchester pump rifle that I received as a gift when I was a young boy (obviously, we have a way to go). Our family consists of me, former Army, but only as a physician, but still pretty good on the range with an M-16 and 9 mm, my wife, who as a farmer's daughter, is also a pretty fair shot, and three young sons, who are remarkably proficient with their BB-guns.

My specific concerns are 1) to acquire firearms on which my wife and sons may acquire some proficiency, and 2) to minimize the complexity of ammunition.

As far as handguns, I'm thinking about the Walther P22, which uses the same .22LR ammunition as for my Winchester rifle, is easy to hold (and, presumedly, fire), and should be comfortable for my wife and children. I might end up buying a more "grown-up" weapon, but perhaps not, keeping in mind your original comments regarding caliber versus accuracy. Any thoughts regarding this strategy, Walther in general, or the P22 in particular?

Similarly, I'm thinking about acquiring a couple of 20 gauge shotguns, something that would be relatively comfortable for the boys and my wife, even though I'm certain I could handle a 12 gauge. I understand that 12 gauge shells are more common, but do you think this would be a big problem if I opted for 20 gauge, instead? My hunting friends strongly recommend the Remington 870 as being very reliable and durable, but they are considerably heavier than some other makes, such as Mossberg, and Mossberg has some nice lines of shotguns for youth and smaller adults. Again, any concerns with sticking with a 20 gauge lineup (versus 12 gauge), and/or the Mossberg brand?

I like the idea of this strategy, allowing me to limit my ammunition inventory to .22LR rifle/handgun and 20 gauge shotgun, but don't want to overly shortchange myself in the long run.

Your help would be appreciated! 

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Dogs_In_A_Pile
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Re: The Definitive Firearms Thread

Hey Doc -

Pardon my poaching.  I'll defer to Aaron on details, but here's my $.02 on the shotguns.

My Dad started me out with a 20 gauge at age 5 and by 8 I was using a Browning 12 gauge pump until I had saved enough for my Remington 1100.  The 870 is a great gun.  I wouldn't worry about the weight or kick of a 12 over a 20.  Going with the 12 gives you the flexibility to use slugs for deer hunting, but can also be used against waterfowl and upland game birds (dove, quail, pheasant, partridge, grouse, etc.) - once you get used to carrying it.

I also have a Sig Sauer Blackwater 9mm, a Smith and Wesson M&P .40, a Heckler and Koch HK45 and a Bushmaster M4 Carbine (AR-15).

Looking to add the Remington 870  shotgun, a Sig P226 Navy 9mm, a Heckler and Koch HK45C, USP .45 or USP Compact .45 (or all of the above if I can sneak them past Mrs. Dogs).

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Aaron M
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Re: The Definitive Firearms Thread

Dr. Peters,

The Walther P22 is a fine choice - the only "x-factor" being the hinged trigger. They have been known to break under heavy use. That said, it's a feature I avoid, but only because I do a lot of shooting, and like simplicity. The Ruger MKII is the "standard" when it comes to .22 caliber handguns - and is well worth looking into as well.

WIth regards to the P Series...
The "P series" was designed by Walther, and produced by Walther and Smith and Wesson.

It was a success on Walther's behalf - but the Smiths were a huge, embarassing failure. They used poor materials, did not do any quality control, and have a history of failures and breakages in their pistols. A close friend of mine is a strong proponent of the Walther P series, and I concur. They're fine pistols; well made, reliable and very easy to handle.
The "SW99" however is a loss.

I don't have any real experience with the P22 - I've fired one, but beyond that I haven't had an opportunity to really test the pistol.

My thought is this: if you're going to get a P22 for practice, get a full size P-series in the caliber of your choice for "carry". While I don't have any problems with the .22 caliber - it's excellent for a multitude of things, plinking, pest control, training, (especially plinking!) this would allow you to have one pistol for "training" (the P22 - cheap ammo, light recoil, unintimidating) and one for "serious" situations, should one arise. You'd have the benefit of identical pistols (with slightly different dimensions) so the operation would be the same on both.

It would also give the wife something to have if you had to carry for some unforseen reason.

With regards to the shotgun - I agree entirely with Dogs...
The 20 gauge is a very comfortable shoot, and can really help people who are prone to flinching learn to shoot a shotgun, but it doesn't really offer anything that a 12 gauge does not. In addition, the shells are less common, and would not be as available. This is a two sided coin, of course, because there are less 20 gauge shooters, there might be proportionally more ammunition - but I see the 12 gauge as being a more reliable choice because it's commonly reloaded (and very simple to reload for).

With regards to Mossberg 500 vs Remington 870...
I own one of each, and both are over a decade old. My Mossberg was my "first" gun - I got it when I was 14. It has some mechanical problems now that the Remington (similar age) does not. The Remington is heavier, but I believe it to be more durable. Either is an acceptable choice, however.

WIth regards to Caliber...
You are definately on the right track here - as with "arms" I like common ammunition.
Apart from weapons for proficiency and familiarization, I only keep M4's in 5.56 for my long arms, and for pistols, 1911's and Glocks in 9mm. It's my belief that the fewer calibers you need to buy, the less complicated proper preparations become.

My advice would be:
Get the 870's in 12 gauge - the boys will grow into them. They're common, so spare parts and shells would be easy to find. Try and find the Wingmaster model with rifle sights - more often than not, they come with the 20" barrel for hunting and a 18" barrel for home defense. These can be found for under $400 in most cases.

WIth regards to the pistols, I prefer Ruger MKII's, and Glocks for the same reason I prefer the AR15 or Remington 870 - they are extremely common, inexpensive and very reliable.
That said, the P-series by Walther (Both the .22 and heavier calibers) are a fine and acceptable choice - especially in your situation where you'll be "introducing" firearms to young men for familiarization.

I hope this helps - let me know if I can give any further information!
Cheers!

Aaron

 

ccpetersmd's picture
ccpetersmd
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Re: The Definitive Firearms Thread

Aaron and Dogs,

Thank you very much for your insights and input. I will certainly take your thoughts in consideration during my upcoming purchases! 

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