Monday, December 31, 2007

Remington bought Marlin

Remington bought Marlin. It's all over the gun blogs. I don't need to tell my readers that, generally. All both of you. The only thing that concerns me is the interruption of production may prevent me from getting the Marlin 1894C that's on my list. Who knows what Remington has planned for Marlin's line anyway.

I'm not sure how I feel, but I'm guessing the Marlin offerings added to the Remington offerings will complement both entities.

All I ask of my gun companies is quality, variety, availability, and value. And I don't need variety as long as they read my mind make the models I, personally, want. I guess that goes for ANY product out there. This merger doesn't mean any of those tenets will be trod upon.

Sunday, December 30, 2007

Survival Guns

Survival Guns. This topic has been rattling around in the queue for some time now. Waiting for me to shake by laziness and type it up. Then I saw this topic someone linked to on the survivalist blog.

Oh no! He beat me to the punch.

Nope. Phew. His are common sense guns that you'd want if balloon went up on the world as we know it. And you were prepared. Heck, I've been accumulating his recommendations with similar justification before I even read his article. They are good practical picks.

The Survival Guns I was interested in discussing are the types you might want to have on you if, say, you bailed out of your airplane. In fact, some of these are guns that were designed precisely for that contingency. And they are neato.

First of all, Lieutenant Fighter-Jock can't bail out with an M-14 and a Remington pump 12 gauge. Oh he COULD, I guess. But. It's impractical because of its size. He might want something more carbine like. Even smaller than the M-16. Or the M-4 stubby M-16, that I loathe.

(and you don't have to be a pilot to need a small compact single weapon that can do a whole lot of stuff for you for weeks in the wilderness with unknown critters of the 2 and 4 legged variety.)

So, anyway, I'm going to discuss capital "S" Survival Guns. Ones that might be found in the survival kit of a military emergency supply cache. Like the Springfield M6 Scout and the Henry AR-7.

Somebody DID beat me to the punch with a side by side comparison here.

I just find the whole concept neato torpedo. They aren't much of a self-defense arm... You aren't going to fight off a platoon of Viet Cong guerrillas and NVA regulars after bailing out of your crippled F-8 Crusader with either weapon. But if you find yourself Gilliganed on a South Pacific Island and want to eat every now and then for a coupla weeks, either would be invaluable.

The Scout is just a small over under rifle still popular in Europe (see above), but with simple stamped metal stock. It sort of folds in half and reassembles with wingnuts or pins or somesuch. You can shoot .22LR and .410 or even .45 Colt put of the larger barrel (though you should probably stick to .410... no rifling methinks in that bigger barrel). Lately, people have been wrapping nylon parachute cord around the barrels as a hand guard and a source of survival cordage

The Henry only shoots .22LR, but it is lighter, and the whole thing fits inside the butt stock, making it even MORE compact once collapsed up. It is supposed to be water proof and float when collapsed or otherwise, but I've read that people have to seal it up with something to keep the water out of the cap at the butt.

Am I EVER going to be in a place, in this day and age, where I'd need something like this to survive? Most definitely not. Still, it might be a fun little item to have for just plinking. If you had a small cabin in the boonies you went to for camping and hunting and such you might be able to stash one of these out there. It'd be easier to hide than a regular rifle in the event of vandals breaking in when you weren't there. In a survival situation, after the Hottentots commenced their land invasion of the United States, if you showed up naked at your cabin you'd have SOMETHING.

Saturday, December 29, 2007

Assault is a behavior

...not a device.

I may get one of these:

or these:

or these:

or these:

Or all FOUR! And/but I'll spend less than $2000 on each

But I still will not own an assault rifle.

I will own a magazine fed semi-automatic rifle with military styling. Functionally no different than either of these hunting rifles:

Both nice hunting rifles (a Remington and a Browning) fires the same diameter bullets as the other 'scary' rifles, carries as many bullets with an after-market magazine, fires those same bullets just as fast, semi-automatic. Cosmetically they are different. Their styling is different. If you have one Dodge Aries K-Car painted white, and one painted candy apple red with yellow flames on the hood, a fat exhaust pipe, and a spoiler on the back you have... 2 K-Cars. Not a grandma car and a drag-racer.

There is an assault rifle. It was invented by the German in WWII, the Soviets made and use a version, and so does the US Army. They are fully automatic firearm, or can be, if the shooter desires. They fire multiple bullets with each pull of the trigger. They are machine guns of a sort. Guess what they look like? Yup, their military styling matches the military-looking guns pictured here.

If you can't tell the difference, or at least recognize in your head that there CAN be, maybe you need to either educate yourself so you know what you are talking about, or stop being facetious or deceitful and underhanded, conflating the two types as if they are one and the same. The dishonest types want to ban private ownership of ALL guns pictured above, and then some. Ban assault weapons? They have been effectively banned since the 1930s. You can't make illegal possession 'illegaller.' Unless you have designs on more than just machine guns.

When they DID have a ban on military styled weapons in the 1990s they couldn't write the law like they wanted: "make a ban on scary-looking guns." They had to be specific on makes and models, or features on models. So weapons that LOOKED exactly like the scary looking weapons featured, but with a few less features, like no bayonet lug, sold like hot cakes to a populace worried the government was going a bit too far.

What they SHOULD do is make it illegal to shoot and kill someone for nefarious reason, or a lesser charge if you shoot and wound someone. Then people can have any kind guns they want and just be legally prohibited from shooting someone except to defend yourself of others.

Oh wait. Murder and Assault with a Deadly Weapon are already illegal.

But Gun Control is not about guns. It's about control.
Who know, maybe the Heller case will come down right and eliminate any confusion about what the 2nd Amendment is about.

I need to stop posting about the 2nd. Not because it isn't a worthy cause, but because I need to get to range and shoot some more. Then blog about that. That or try to blog positive thoughts about the 2nd and not combative case arguments. Happy stories.

Anyway. What to call the rifles above if you are going to drop the disengenuous 'assalt rifle' moniker? MBtGE calls a .223 a Light Rig, and a .308 a Heavy Rig. I prefer: Magazine-Fed, Medium-Capacity, Semi-Automatic, Utility Rifle. Utility Rifle for short. I'd hunt with mine, target shoot, plink, varmint and pest control, and defend myself. That's pretty utility. And I do that with the Garand now, pretty much.

Oh and if it was belt fed or had a drum magazine that carried 50+, THAT would be high-capacity. Those little 5 round mags that disappear into the mag well are low-cap.

Friday, December 28, 2007

Me? With a 9mm?

If I EVER decided to get a 9mm or .40 handgun I'd probably go for this 1911 style mini pistol made by Springfield called the EMP.

Not shabby. I'd be more likely to get one if there was Concealed Carry laws in my state. (It's Maryland, effective not.) I'd lean toward getting the .40 caliber version. I have a Colt 1903 in .380 if I wanted to carry something in the 9mm size. .40 isn't ideal, but wardrobe choices might necessitate something a little more portable than the standard .45.

And if I get CCW and wardrobe circumstanse are extremely restricted, I'd own a Kel Tec P3-AT, which is .380, and get a holster like this one.

Wallet in one hip pocket, holster in the other. Better get a button on those pants pockets.

But I'm drifting, again. The EMP. It might be worth lifting it onto the master list just because of the cheapness of the ammunition. 9mm and .40 is CHEAP. Relatively, of course.

Let's just say .40 caliber. I won't get it in 9mm. The only 9mm I'd ever own would be a free one, from a gift or somesuch. And even then I'd be tempted to trade it in for another type.

Thursday, December 27, 2007

ok Mr. du Toit, I got some ammo

I even bought a box of a caliber I don't have yet, but will when tax refunds come in. 100 rounds pistol, 40 rifle. Proper rifle, in 7.62 vis .308, just in case. It's not 1000 and 5000 of each, but it's a start. Well, a continuation. I don't yet have 1000 of ANYTHING except .22lr.
And yes, that is .45 ACP. The ammo for a gun I don't yet have.
And I've GOT to buy a better camera:

We discussed the .308 vs 7.62 controversy. They, Engage Armament, seem to be of the opinion that factory fresh .308 isn't going to hurt a robust Garand. We chatted about the Springfield .45 I want, and what it may come with. A little iffy on whether it has the Tritium sights option for the basic Mil-Spec. Might have to pop for model "PX9109LP". That model has a few more options than I have to have, but not TOO many. I NEED ambi safety and tritium 3-dot. Apparently most .45s made today are made in Brazil, too, no matter what company they come from. Meh.
Soon, soon.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Online Info

This Chuck Hawks guy is a prolific writer and disseminator of information. Here is his info on Guns, but he has other stuff, like Naval History and Motorcycles.

Gonna take a while to check it out.

I stumbled on him looking for a reviews on the Tikka Rifle, made by Beretta (they make a lefty .308 at a GOOD value). He has a review of another rifle I am interested in, the Winchester 88

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Monday, December 24, 2007

Ammo Stockpile

Great. The inestimable Kim du Toit, worried about a political victory in the US by people hostile to our Civil Right and to Capitalism, and also in light of commodities price increases, has changed his recommendation from:

Have 100 rounds in each gun you shoot available and 1000 in the primary shooting pieces.


Have 1000 in each and 5000 in your scary looking major caliber semi-automatic rifle.

He wants to make 2008 an ammo-buying year, and recommends purchasing from domestic manufacturers, for quality and to support their business.

Sigh. And I was getting close to that first recommendation. Good thing I got a decent raise and stopped smoking.

The big reason? He worries about the possibility of lean years ahead. Democrat party official might ban importation of ammo and cite it as protection for domestic industries rather than a means to keep ammo out of the hands of citizens. So the price could artificially skyrocket that way.

I don't have $2500 though. 7.62 is $.50 a round. Generally.

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Worry Wart

I rechecked the headspace of my Garand with teh .308 Field gauge. The first time I did it I experienced, (ahem!) user error. Also know as the ID-10-tee error (idiot). The gauge didn't seat right against the bolt face.

That means I can fire 7.62 (well probably. the gun is marked 7.62 and I got it from a reputable gunshop.) But there is extra space in the chamber up front. The cartridge for the 7.62x51 and .308 are nigh identical on the outside dimensions. The big difference is the wall thickness of the brass (and heh. if any gunsmith ever catches me saying something wrong, TELL ME, so I can correct myself and correct my words and not lead some reader astray.) . Military 7.62 as thicker brass. When fired the cartridge expands and this thick brass can expand into the gaps no problem. It's tough. But the thinner commercial brass in a .308 expands and may expand TOO much if there is too much wiggle room. In a chamber with tighter tolerances MADE for .308 (which all 7.62 made to date fit fine) a commercial .308 doesn't have as far to wiggle and the brass won't split or crack or separate. If a brass case has a failure the gun will have issue when the next round goes in on top of cartridge fragments. That would be bad.

Also, the thinner brass means more powder can be crammed into a .308, allowing for higher pressures. I'm not worried about pressure issues in a robust Garand receiver.

Will I stop using .308? Probably not. I will try to buy higher quality .308 and only use stuff that is factory new. I will NEVER reload .308 and fire it out of the current Garand, as reworking brass over and over only makes it thinner and weaker. I might load virgin .308 brass, but still seek thicker brass. For stockpiling I will get 7.62 only from here on out, and probably shoot off the spare .308 if possible. I will not cut corners and buy cheap .308 to save a few pennies a round when target shooting.

In the future I will eventually re-barrel the Garand with a higher quality chrome barrel. Probably from Fulton Armory. When I do it will be a real .308, or a .30-06 and restore it to original.

I did, with help, a bit of online research, hoping to find a bit more info and maybe some encouragement. Here are some results:

This one stressed the 2 rounds are not the same, and cautions against firing .308 rounds in 7.62 chambers.

This one is a good article and is the basic source info for the above article.

This one gives a history of the 7.62 cartridge and mentions that even amoungst the various manufacturer, here, and amoung our allies, there are variation in just that one round. They're ALL different.

This one is just a forum discussing headpsace issue on the M-1 Garand. I link to it just to give you the forum datum.

This is from the same forum and details the proper procedure on how to use a headspace gauge. Check it out. I am going to see if I can list it here.

This is another forum with a few threads on the topic at hand.

This one is a thread that goes back and forth on the topic. One opinion says yes, fire it interchangeably, the next says it's gonna blow up in your face, yes it is, no it ain't, yes, no. But it's another datum point.

Friday, December 21, 2007

Re-assembled Garand

Nice mix of modern and classic styling, I think. (click the pic for a closer look)

That's a Galco Safari Ching Sling. It gives me Ching Sling type action popularized by Colonel Jeff Cooper, without having to mount a 3rd swivel on my 1943 rifle. I have a muzzle brake up front that is more for show than anything. I haven't compared side by side with no brake, but I can't tell much difference on reaquiring targets after firing. And that Super Scout rail from Fulton. The rings are just inexpensive BSA, medium height. I'll get a scope in a bit here and we'll see how she goes. I, of course, saved the original parts and can quickly restore the weapon to what it was on the day I got it.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

.45 Carbine

If you check my master list you'll see I have a couple REAL carbines on it.

(By "carbine" I mean short, rifle-like gun, that shoots smallish ammo. Like pistol ammo. I guess a semi-auto sub machine gun looking gun would qualify. Like a tommy gun, a Mini-14, M1 Carbine, or the weaker AR-15 -snort!- )

The lever action .357 is a definite. Marlin 1894C up there ^

And the other one is gonna be a .45 of some type. I kinda like the concept of a .45 version of the Marlin Camp Carbine, (above) but they don't make those new anymore. They take the mags out of a 1911, which is a huge plus. I hear Hi-Point was thinking of a making a .45. Man those are ugly, but they are supposed to work. The Berreta CX-4 Storm is VERY interesting. All nice, and here is the CX-4

And then I saw THIS:

Whoa! (Thanks MBtGE)

That's the new KRISS Super V CRB/SO .45 ACP Civilian Carbine. Nice look. Integral flashlight. Manly caliber. And it takes Glock 21 magazines. It's a gun like this that makes me reconsider my aversion to Glocks. Oh my. That'll make anyone with a fetish for Tactical styling feel a little tightness in their britches.
If I do get the KRISS, I'd almost HAVE to get the Glock 21 .45 ACP, and that complicates the gun inventory, if not the ammo inventory. So I lean Camp Carbine still. But MAN!

A mini-14 is on the list, but that's sort of another category.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007


The BAR was always my dream gun. Or it was. Back when I knew nothing and only looked at capabilities on paper, and then not looking TOO closely.

I wondered why didn’t EVERYBODY use the select fire version, before I knew better. I never understood how every pencil necked pencil pusher right on up to President Wilson didn't insist all soldiers be issue one in WWI, and never knew why they'd take away the option of firing semi-auto, as well as auto, in the WWII version. The BAR was perfect and would still be today, if we equipped our soldier. Look, it has the same size clip as an M-16, it fires REAL bullets in .30 caliber. It can fire as a machine-gun. It's accurate. It was designed by a weapons design genius. With armor piercing rounds, no regular vehicle was safe.

Even today, when I indulge in video game shoot em ups, I like to select the BAR for my virtual avatar, to wreak havoc upon the pixelated Japanazis.

Roberta X agrees with my sentiments, methinks, and mentions it in the comments here.

The only I thought that could improve it would be a 30 round magazine. AK-47 equipped commies going up against even 7.62 NATO chambered BAR equipped Muhrrican boys would wet their pants in fear.

But, I am older and wiser now. I've talked to Marines that fired it back when I still thought the BAR was the be-all, end-all gun. Their simple comment about it, other than accolades, was, "Well it IS heavy."

Heavy it is. 19 pounds empty. The M-16 weighs 8.5 pounds... LOADED. Why is it so heavy? The receiver is machined from a HUGE piece of steel. Even using CNC machining today, that would be expensive. And heavy, did I mention? If you lightened up the rifle, anyway, you'd probably end up with something that didn't fire very accurately at full auto. Now that I know better, here is what is wrong with it. Expense to machine, capacity mag, heavy. The military likes to use the smaller ammo so they can fire more times at the bad guy, so, even if I don't like it, the .30 is a non-starter on caliber choice for general issue.

Ok, so it isn't perfect. I shouldn't feel indignant that it isn't still issued as a standard primary arm in every allied army in the world. I still like it. If I win a lottery I am buying a few BARs (probably pay $20,000 and up for em.) I might buy one Tommy gun, but lots of BARs.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

DVD Review Bleg

There are a bajillion videos that teach about various aspect of shooting. How-To videos. Be it, Introduction to the 1911, beginner gunsmithing, archived WW2 training films, Reloading 101, self-defense firearm handling, 'Improve Your Whitetail Stalk'... that sort of stuff .

Lots of em

Some are bound to be extremely good and useful

Many are bound to be dregs

Any recommendations for the good stuff?

Any review websights out there that give a breakdown of how good they are and what they might help you learn?

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Ring Issue

(to the tune of the Chitty Chitty Bang Band title song)

Bang Bang!
shooty shooty
Shooty Shooty Bang Bang
Shooty Shooty Bang Bang
Shooty Shooty Bang Bang.
Shooty Shooty Bang Bang.
Shooty Bang Bang Shooty Shooty Bang Bang
Shooty Bang Bang Shooty Shooty Bang Bang
Shooty Bang Bang Shooty Shooty Bang Bang

Oh you Shooty Shooty Bang Bang
Shooty Shooty Bang Bang
Now what to do
High Low, either way I go
I still can’t see the iron sights
But, no,
there taint no
other rings like
near, and fro,

Peep, through,
with em what you do, is use either scope OR sights
But I can't see over or under
With the rings all locked down tight
But I can't see over or under
With the rings all locked down tight
Shooty Shooty Bang Bang
Shooty Shooty Bang Bang
Cuz, with
The cheapy rings here
at least I see without spending too much
and, now
I can say without fear
That I'm glad I didn't buy the primo stuff

Maybe, I
will get return-to-zero and they will be my hero
Shooty Bang Bang
Quick Release
yes sirree
but I hear they don't do as advertised
cuz Marketing is a Lie
Shooty Bang Bang
Yes Marketing's a lie

Seriously, has anyone ever used quick release scope mounts, removed a scope and put it back on and been confident it was where you wanted it, all zeroed up? I mean without spending $4000 for the privelege. But the scope rail on the Garand is a Weaver type, and the tightening screw that mount the ring to rail goes right across the rail and even if it was JUST that cross bolt, and no ring body at all, I still can't see the fore sight. With no rings at all, I am fine. So if there was a true quick release ring that worked. I need to investigate this Leopold type. Maybe cimbined with something like this. Anyone ever use their scope like that? Taking it on and off without having to resight your zero?

Saturday, December 15, 2007


"I've said it before, but it bears repeating: the only thing that will stop an armed attacker on the spot is a person with a gun of their own. Gun haters realize this as well, which is why they rarely ever suggest disarming the police. They, too, rely on the gun to protect themselves from harm--they just feel all high and mighty because they outsource the task."

... so sayeth the Munchkin Wrangler, who also said the gun is civlization. LINK

He is right on both. Hoplophobes DO want to outsource that task. The gun is civilization.
War on Guns guy calls these outsourced task individual, "Only Ones". They are law enforcement officers, and some of the consider themselves the "only ones" trained enough and authorized enough to be trusted with guns. Law Enforcement types don’t all have this attitude, but enough do to matter.

But the point is not the gun. The hoplophobe consider this outsourcing of the task to be the point of civilization. Defending yourself with violence is something barbarians have to do. Civilized people shouldn’t have to do that sort of thing.

And that is what separated us from the hoplophones.. This concept may be the true root of the disagreement. They want the world to work like they picture it in their minds, where gallant protectors defend them from harm, and they are very good at providing this benevolent protection. I want to live in that utopia too. But WE know that the world doesn’t work that way. That there can’t be enough of them. That giving a group that ultimate and sole power to protect can corrupt and that then we may need protection from the protectors. That we have individual responsibilities to look after ourselves and not be any extra burden on others. That the world is dangerous at times despite what we do to try to make it safer, and that people are imperfect creatures.

It’s a theory at least. But what do I know?

Whatcha bet that the anti-gunnies are also for other top down protection for our own good measure, generally, and pro-gun types are more of a live and let live? That anti-gunnies want to also ban smoking in public, while pro-gun types are more live and let live and if they don’t smoke, don’t mind if YOU smoke in front of them. Anti-gunnies have Radon detectors in their basements, pro-gunnies don’t worry about it. Pro-gunnies I bet for a large part think that if they are paying for the medical payments that they should be able to drive a motorcycle without a helmet if they choose, while anti-gunnies strike me as the types that insist on helmets. On BIKE riding children. Or even NON bike riding children. Heck ALL CHILDREN CHOULD BE REQUIRED BY LAW TO WEAR A HELMET 24/7 UNTIL THEY ARE 21 YEARS OLD. They could get HURT if they don’t.

All generally, of course. I’m sure there are anti-gunnies out there that smoke, in their basement, before riding around on their bike without a helmet.

But, generally, there seems to be a root cultural difference.

That difference is as American as anything, dating back to the Puritans vs. Rugged Individualists like Hawkeye ala James Fenimore Cooper. (and it probably isn’t JUST American.) The whole "make a Utopia by passing binding rules" vs. "Leave me to mine as long as I don’t cross you and yourn." Cultural difference we’ve been arguing about for 500 years. And people switch sides on different issues, but they generally stick to one style. They certainly stick to one side on one issue, and it take a tremendous effort to convince them of the opposite someday. That whole Puritan vs. Individualist subject is a big essay in itself, and it is less gun related...

Maybe some other time.

But both sides have trouble even conceiving the position of the other side. Well, the Indivualist side can sorta see what the other side is thinking, but they'll never really understand why. The 'Puritan' anit-gunnies, looking for their Utopia are totally myopic and can't even conceive why anyone WOULDN'T want to live in teh Utopia they have conceived, and if you just join their side and try a LITTLE bit harder... Their dreams are realized. Indiviudalist just see fantaists and want no part of THAT vat of Kool Aid..

Friday, December 14, 2007

AK Challenge

A big argument used by those that would ban forever our ability to defend ourselves with firearms is that civilians shouldn’t have guns like any military has. And point to the AK-47s that have been in the news lately, in the hands of some wackos.

Well that gun was NOT like any gun any military has EVER had. The calls for banning that specific gun, and others like it, because it is the same assault rifle used or still in use by some army are wrong.

Oh, admittedly it LOOKS like the same AK-47 used by a bajillion tin-pot countries that the Soviets and/or their satellites exported to, but it isn’t. It doesn’t even function the same way. No military would equip their soldier with that type of rifle, available in our gun stores in this country today, if they could help it. And why should they, when real AK-47s or even better arms are available to them as cheaply. Or cheaper. An AK in Iraq costs $75. The thing that LOOKS like an AK is available in this country, and Iraq, for $500.

My challenge, cite a military, anywhere in the world, at any time since the 1940s (before the AK was invented) that used the same gun that the Omaha shooter used? A gun that looks like an AK, and functioned like the gun the Omaha shooter used. In other words, a semi-auto-only AK-47.

There might be. I doubt it, but there could be a country out there that doesn’t find an AK capable of doing all an AK can do a liability to their soldiers. I’m sure a gun enthusiast that reads this will pipe up in the comments. Seriously. I’m truly curious if such a beast has been fielded.

You cannot sell an AK-47 made after 1986 in this country legally. No assault weapons ban is needed. It is already, effectively, in place.

Only one shooting has involved real AK-47s, and that was that Hollywood bank robbery in the 90s. Those AK were already illegal before the robbery started and they fired off their first rounds. What law could be passed to make them MORE illegal? It’s illogical.

When a hoplophobe insists that guns that a military uses should be banned, then that hoplophobe needs to be corrected. No military uses the gun they are thinking of or pointing at on MSNBC.

Militaries don’t use the AR-15, either, so popular with so many gun enthusiasts. They use the M-16 and its derivatives.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

AK-47 why

I’m not going to spend a lot of time discussing that waste-of-skin loser that committed suicide in a mall in Nebraska and felt the need to take 8 innocents with him, but a co-worker brought up a point. Why the AK-47?

Why do bad guys like the AK? My co-worker has teenage sons and they want Airsoft rifles. What type of Airsoft rifle do they want? The AK-47 style.

(I personally hate the things. It’s not good practice to get a gun to shoot orange plastic Airsoft balls at your friends, then later in life get a REAL rifle and practice really hard never even pointing the barrel at anything you don’t want to destroy. Other than that issue, they are fine.)

When there is a shooting and it involves a rifle of some sort, you can count on the media saying "the gunman sprayed with an AK-47 assault rifle" even if they have no idea what kind of rifle was used.
So why is the AK-47 default for "gun that does bad"?

My theories are all over the place, and not even I am sure of their validity.

They are all over the news in the hands of bad-guys, thanks to the Soviet Union giving them out like ketchup packets at McDonalds. So someone with a bad boy predeliction for anti-social behavior might associate the Kalashnikov with Cool. Anti-Social is always Cool. Just ask James Dean. And the AK-47 is "the preferred weapon of your enemy, and makes a distinctive sound when fired" according to Gunny Highway in the movie ‘Heartbreak Ridge’ (all the Marines I’ve known have HATED that movie…)

So the AK has a Black Hat reputation that adds to its attraction.

It’s not really that good a rifle. Sure its action is reliable, but how many Bad-Azzes are going to drag their prestige bad-boy rifle through the mud and then need it to function? It’s round is ok. It will do the job, but it’s a little anemic for a .30 caliber. There are better alternatives. And there are more accurate long distance rifles than the AK, but if you are a dirtbag punk shooting up a public place your ranges are going to be pretty short.

The AK-47 is cheaper than those better alternatives, generally, but not by THAT much... Cheaper means more available to a Bad-Azz Dirtbag on a budget. But it is no longer cheaper, if it ever was, than a Ruger Mini-30 ranch rifle, the functional equivalent if you buy after-market magazines.

Should I be calling them "Bad-Azz Dirtbags"? Lately the only ones doing wrong have been ineligible to possess a firearm in the first place. And I bet there are actual Bad-Azz Dirtbags that nonetheless do not cause undue consternation to their neighbors and society and are anything but scofflaws. ‘Sofflaw Bad-Azz Dirtbag Loser Punks’ is just too much to type, I guess.

The ammo is cheaper, yes. Compared to other .30 caliber rounds, surplus rounds from Eastern Europe, or steel cased Wolf ammo in 7.62x39 is cheaper than .308. But it is no cheaper than other CARBINE rounds, like the .223 or 5.56mm.

But right now, the SKS is VERY cheap. The rifle can cost $100, and it’s the same round as the AK. Not as sexy, I guess, and it doesn’t have the cool looking banana magazine that holds 30 rounds.
So there are a few theories. The most compelling one is the ‘coolness factor’ that the rifle picked up. None of them seem to be enough to explain the AK’s popularity. Was there a big ad campaign that I missed out on? Anyone have any other ideas?

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Sailorcurt's Sinister Suggestions

Sailorcurt left some suggestions in the comments about my Lefty Selection problem

"If you're set on a lefty, have you considered Browning?

There's this one with a 20 inch barrel available in .308

This one comes in .30-06 with a 22 inch barrel.

Then there's This pricey one in .30-06 with a 22 inch barrel available with the "BOSS" system.

Savage has the most offerings in Left handed bolt actions...and the best prices...and I've heard really good things about their "accutrigger" system.

Ruger makes a few left-handed M77 models, a couple in .30-06, but none in .308

And Remington offers several lefthanded Model 700 variants that are available in both .308 and .30-06 depending on the variant.

As a lefty myself, I've always been partial to Browning's offerings, but the Remington 700 has the most widely recognized reputation, Ruger makes a darn good rifle and Savage can't be dismissed out of hand. There are plenty of choices out there for us lefties these days."

To answer: Yes I have considered Browning, and I am waiting for the new X-Bolt to come out. But more on that in a bit.

I'd never get a Savage with an Accu-Trigger. Never never never. I tried out the Accu-Trigger and it just bugs me. Personal Preference. I do like the pressure that Savage has put on the market, making companies like Browning come out with a better trigger group. So the Accu-Trigger is good for that thing.

The problem I have with the Browning A-Bolts... and those rifles have a sterling reputation, is lack of iron sights. I'd rather not have to gunsmith those on there. And the X-Bolt promises to be even better, but I'll need to wait on reviews and to inspect it myself.

The Ruger offerings are ok, and the Remingtons are even better, if more spendy, but they all suffer from a lack of back up iron sights.

I may have to reliquish this requirement to get me a lefty, but I'd rather get something that had no compromises and matched ALL my desires.

The gun I want is essentially a Winchester Model 70, pre 1964, lefty configuration, in my caliber, with scope mountings. And all for around $1000. I believe I'll find that one the same way I believe I will find the Tooth Fairy's mountain of bicuspids, or that I'll be able to order a Dodo egg omelette the next time I'm at the diner, or that I'll hear Hillary advocate full funding of the Civilian Marksmanship Program at the next Democrat debate. All that COULD happen, I guess.

But Browning and Remington are right there at the top of the list if I don't find the dream rifle.

Sinister as in Left-Handed

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Choose again

Bolt action left side, or lever action .308? What to do. Help me decide.

I always thought I'd go Remington, but I've been on a CZ kick lately. And they are handsome rifles.

I hear rumors that CZ makes a lefty version of THIS beauty. (you HEAR me Santa?) That might be in the DISTANT future, when I am richer. Or this one on a budget, but only .30-06. Think they make this tactical one in Lefty? What are the chances? I'm sending an email to CZUSA to ask.

This might be my favorite CZ. European styling, iron sights, a scope base, It just appeals to me. And it in either .30-06 or .308, so it hits all my requirements if a lefty.

So what about the choice?! Ok. Do I get the bolt action CZ 550 FS with the Mannlicher stock, or do I get a the Winchester 88.

Once I go this route I may never turn back and get the OTHER one. It will be my single shot target and hunting rifle for 800 yard or less shooting (when I get better...) with a 10 power scope mounted. The alternate, unchosen rifle will be superfluous in the gun safe I am trying to keep trimmed down. See the Master List.

So, this in Lefty config:


Update: SUMBITZ!!! Just got an email back. CZ makes darn few lefties, and none in .30 cal of any sort.

Makes the choice easier at this point, don't it?


I think my consternation means "I want a bolt action so I can chamber another round from the prone position, which I can't do as well with the lever gun, but the lever gun is perfect otherwise." I need a 'bolt action Winchester 88 pre-1964' Which is probably just a bolt action lefty Winchester Model 70. I'll poke around gunbroker some more, to see if it exists.


Monday, December 10, 2007

Home Gunsmithing

Well I've been doing a little home gunsmithing on the Garand. It required a full takedown of the rifle. Here is a 'before' picture.

You can see the after market muzzle break on the tip there. With it on, no bayonetting of the wounded for me. A bayonet won't fit, now.

I wanted to replace the rear handgaurd with a scout scope mounting from Fulton Armory. While doing this, I noticed I was missing the ping that secures the lower band retaining pin, so now that is on order. The lower band ferrule wants to stay attached to the walnut rear hand guard, so I am getting another ferrule too. This missing pin and spare ferrule prevents me from fully reassembling the rifle. Ah well. Soon, soon. But jeez, now I have a box of parts sitting around.

The other thing I wanted to do was replace the plastic spacer block in the magazine well with a metal one. You can see the ivory colored spacer (circled) in the picture below sitting atop its gray metal replacement, already in place. You can see the Scout Scope mount, too. The purpose of this spacer block is to prevent you from trying to load the longer original .30-06 cartridges in a rifle converted to 7.62/.308. The plastic seemed flimsy and bugged me from day one. Well now it is gone. I was very worried when I tapped out the pin that holds this altogether at the front part of the receiver, as doing so caused 4 different things to just fall right out of the gun. The book I bought on Garand assembly was invaluable for getting it all back right.

I wanted to disassemble, inspect, clean and reassemble the bolt. I have spares for this already, as I mentioned yesterday. And the bolt tool for easy disassembly. I thought there might be schmutz inside the bolt, and that might have caused a slam fire I experienced. Here is the before:

And the after:

Notice the gunk on the paper towels? Yup, probably a good idea to clean it out. I also could see all those tiny parts and springs, and see they were still in pretty good shape. I need to NOT slop a lot of oil and cleaner near the bolt face in the future to keep it from building up all that gunk. It went back together just fine. And I can use the bolt tool on any M1A purchase I might make.

So when the new ferrule arrives, this week probably, I will reassemble, test for function, HOPEFULLY not have to take it to a real gunsmith to correct what I messed up, and be all ready to get a scope in a month or two.

When I reassemble later this week, I am going to re-grease the exposed parts that require it, too.

Saturday, December 8, 2007

Lil' Bits

I got some lil bits for the Garand.

A bolt tool to disassemble the bolt to be sure it is sound.

Some spare springs, just in case.

A scout rail from Fulton, to mount a long eye relief scope forward of the receiver

That field gage to check the head space.

Some scope rings from BSA

... next tp buy, a relatively expensive scope. Maybe something to bore sight zero the rifle without firing it. Maybe a trigger group. Any recommendation on the bore sight device? There is this, but there are also lasers.

So I need to strip the Garand right down to install the scope rail, and I'll get the bolt out for inspection, too. So there is the Gunsmithing day planned, this weekend.

Friday, December 7, 2007

Gauge Came

The mailman came with a package from Brownells. It's the .308 field gauge. If, as I suspect, the Garand can close on it then the headspace is too loose for .308 (and I need to check 7.62!) and I am fooked, by Crom.

Wait one, as I go check.

Huh. The bolt didn't close on the .308 Field Gauge. I figured it would. Maybe this isn't a Navy Garand after all.


All that worry for nothing. I can mix ammo. And I am not in a hurry to get a rifle that accept both .308 and 7.62. I HAVE one. A good and accurate one.

Master list, safe for now.

And I got a little grief from offline friends of the blawg, including MBtGE from over-worrying the issue. That brand new commercial brass in .308 was never gonna give me a problem and that the variation in a case lot would vary a couple thou anyway. Meh. Either way, I'm good.

Thursday, December 6, 2007


Can anyone tell me why my banner ^ is smaller now than it was? I used to see all the Garand cradled on that recliner. Dang Blogger

Master List Rethink

Well crap.

The whole "careful using .308 in a 7.62 without checking" worry has struck me. That the bullets are interchangeable, but not really, and that you should be careful about that, especially with that Garand I have, etc. etc.

If my Garand, as I suspect, should only be fed 7.62, all the spare ammo in .308 I've been shooting is a no-no. Danger Danger. And half my storeroom of ammo is useless for this gun, where I thought I was fine. So it ISN'T the very good general purpose rifle I thought it was.

So now I am thrown for a loop, if it is so selective in what it eat and what rifle I will want to go with it in the future.

Ok, I'm only talking about .30 cal rifles on the Master List. This doesn't impact pistol choice or .22... what have you. It breaks down to 4 REAL rifles.

The 7.62 Garand I have, and coming up... a bolt action LH Remington 700 10x scope type, a hunting type - like a carbine Winchester 88 lever action in .308, and a mag fed hard hitting carbine type like the M1A with a short barrel.

Or should I worry about that 7.62 Garand... make it a .30-06, get a .30-06 Reminghton 700, a Winchester Model 88 in .308, and a long barrel M1A.

Or get a second Garand in .30-06, forget the Remington, forget the M1A, or maybe get a sniper version of the M1A.

Dammit! Too many permutations. I felt better about the list when I thought that the Garand took both .308 and 7.62.


Ok, I checked with Fulton-Armory. I could get the .308 barrel for the Garand from them, if they can make it in tolerances that cover both ammo types. (I'm sure they do, but will confirm) I can get an upgraded chrome lined barrel too at that time, too. Fine. Then I get that Winchester 88 that shoots .308. Maybe double check its headspace before I buy it, though the only 7.62 ammo I'd shoot through it would be for practice or emergencies. Ok, ok, I am feeling better. Then I go short barrel M1A with a nice dot scope like this one. Use that as my serious carbine. I won't glass bed the Garand, but it is pretty decent all by itself. I can get a better trigger group from Fulton. That'd be nice. And it would give me plenty of spare parts.

Ok, that is better. What about the Remington 700 sniper 1000 yard target type? Hmmm... .300 mag? A specialty gun...

Wednesday, December 5, 2007


Thanks to an anonymous NY commenter for planting the germ of an idea when I put out a bleg for post material ideas.

I am shopping for glass.

Well actually, I shopped for it and know what I want.

I want a scout scope and scout scope configuration. Colonel Cooper preferred a scout rig.
Leopold makes a nice one. (though THIS is very cool if you like the AR-15 style carbine as you primary. Ooooooo.) You have a few options when attaching a rifle scope when it comes to the Garand. I chose forward, with a lower power but long eye relief scope. This will allow for a greater range of view when not using the scope but presenting the rifle to shoot. And, theoretically, faster target acquisition. If you mount a 10 power scope and it take up all of one eye's field of view, and part of the next eyes' and a deer pops up only 25 yards away, all you see is fur and you have no idea when you are hitting that deer unless you spend the time to hunt around. Precious time is lost. A 10x scope has its place, but that isn't it. And a 2x scope is fine for all reasonable sporting ranges. And when good enough people can be known to shoot zombie sized targets, in center mass at least, at 600 yards with iron sights, I imagine a 2x scope at that range could be a nice crutch for an intermediate rifleman like me. If I get really good, I might get a head shot in at that range too.

A 10x scope is in the future, just not for this Garand.

If I got a 10x scope, I'd have to mount it back closer to my face. And I have the disadvantage of being left handed. With the ejection from the receiver shooting out to the right on a Garand, to mount a scope at the rear of the receiver you have to offset it over to the left. This is easier for a righty to line up his eye. A lefty has to lean way over the stock. Doable, supposedly, but less practical. At least the iron sight can often remain in place with this rig. Doing double duty.

Now I am a lefty and left eye dominant. Leaning over for a lefty and being RIGHT eye dominant, the lean over can become impossible. In that circumstance you might be fooked.

Speaking of eye domination, and how to tell, I found a new, to me way to check that. You do need a partner. If you want to check which eye is dominant, have you buddy close one of his or her eyes. Then YOU, keeping both eyes open, stand 15 feet away and extend your arm, pointing at his visible eye without thinking about it. You partner will see your finger tip lining up with your dominant eye. Nifty! Most people's eye domination matches up with the hand they write with. My dad, his finger tip lined up with the bridge of his nose, so he is odd... Both eyes. If you are cross dominant, you may want to shoot the other hand, or close your dominant eye.

There is another advantage to the scout scope. You can more easily keep both eyes open. Something you hear you are supposed to do and I have been training myself to do more. Why? I have no authoritative answer, why. Thought I have some logical guesses. Close an eye and you sort of squint the open eye, and this can distort you a bit. Adds a bit of semi-flinching too. With both eyes open you can have a broader field of view, taking in more targets while aiming at one, to avoid unpleasant surprises. Both eyes open and you have better depth perception, though why you need too much of that with a scope I don't know.

But it all comes down to what works best for you. Try both, I say. Or use those
fancy shooter's glasses. They do a neat little trick, making you eye like a long lense used to show a pitcher and batter in focus. You can't walk around in public with it, though, so it is impractical in real life.

A future acquistion for fancy glass? A fixed 9 or 10 power scope to go with a bolt action tack driver. Rugged. That's why the fixed power, less to jiggle and break than a variable power. And really good $200 rings to go with it. THAT kind of fancy. But I'd want a proper range to shoot such a rifle regularly at the ranges it would call for. Who know if I'll ever have that kind of access. I will try.

A bore sight system too. Either the laser pointer kind, or I need to check out this one, from Leopold.

The other glass item is a gargantuan spotting scope. 30x.
60x!! Really big eyes. For shooting? Yes, but there is so much fun to be had with such a scope if you have a horizon to scan. I'll probably go for a used one. Getting the latest model is fancy, but lots of spotter like to upgrade over the years. I am hoping there are cast off that can be had for a bargain.

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Is NICS unacceptable?

Snowflakes in Hell brought up this subject, and he's right it is an infringement. Why do we need permission from the gov't to exercise a right? We don't need the government's permission to be represented by a lawyer in trial, do we? If someone can't be trusted with a gun, why are they out of prison or a lunatic asylum? "If you can't trust them with a gun, you can trust them with a can of gasoline and a match."

But I don't even think about it. The National Instant Check System being a rights violation, that it. It doesn't worry me at this point. It DOES sound reasonable from this distance. There are so many other much more egregious violations out there. It is so far down the list I don't even consider it, unless forced to. Now if it WAS the most baddest-horrible-no-good-very-bad rights violation going, and all others were resolved, and I HAD to consider it? Hmmm. It's hypocritical to be for it, having fought and prevailed against the other infringements (obviously, this discussion would only happen in the future, after the others were repealed or rendered moot). You could do away with NICS without a problem, but there would have to be a significant shift in the national culture. One where people weren't considered criminal until after they had committed a crime. One where people were trusted to vote or own a firearm after they paid their debt to society, and were not freed to walk around free until they paid it. But all that talk is unrealistic Utopian thinking that gets people in trouble when they try to enact such an idyllic society... forcefully. And that's not such a good idea. Damn gibbets. Don't want them srping up like weeds again.

Jeez it's HARD to be a civil right absolutist and not fall into the pitfalls. Drawing the line is tough.

But in our imperfect, set up by humans, national system, where reality reigns, perhaps the NICS system is a necessary evil. I know the Assault Weapons Ban is NOT a necessary evil. Certainly not the "all guns banned" that the UK has. That is very far from even practical as to be foolish. Is restricting the sale of firearm to only weapons with a sporting purpose a necessary evil and a reasonable restriction. No, it is contrary to the right and unreasonable. The right is a right to sport, after all. But where to draw the line? A BAR is restricted by the NFA of 1934, but that is a valid military arm for which the 2nd Amendment was written to address. But jeez, the machine guns scare folks. But if the propagandists get scared enough at handguns. is fear the test case for restriction.

It's very hard to draw that line on reasonable restrictions in a real world. Realistically. An absolutist has the principled luxury of not agonizing over the line, but he is less likely to see his vision made reality.

Monday, December 3, 2007

New Contract Finalized

I've dotted the I's and crossed the T's. Today I put in my 2 weeks notice and start my new thing on the 17th. The raise will be nice and help the shooting-sports etcetra's budget.

Phew. I hate change. Too stressful. But the eggs are in the scramble now.

Sunday, December 2, 2007

Maryland as a Why to my Where

My Buddy the Gun Enthusiast harangues me for living in Maryland, where the regulatory environment with regard to firearms is a bit more… stringent? Shall we say? Certainly compared to Virginia.

Though there has been some rumblings in Virginia for more restrictive firearm infringements. It’s a funny state. There are tax-increasing pro-gun conservative republicans in the State House there, and Democrats in the suburbs of DC run against them with commercials attacking them on being pro-tax and pro-gun. Sometimes Virginia is like Bizarro World. Up is Down! Hot is Cold! State Democrat party members are Capitalist!

Anyhoo. Maryland. Let me explain MD political landscape for those of you not from around here.

There are 4 real regions:

The Eastern Shore, which former Governor Shaefer famously dismissed as the Poop-House Side of Maryland in the 1980s. Only he didn’t say poop. It is historically rural and sparsely populated. Though Yuppy type people are moving there and building ginormous homes in extended commuter range. They move out there for the bucolic vibe, and immediately ruin said vibe by their very suburban presence. Fortunately its a huge area and it will take a while to ruin it with yuppies. The very southern tip of the Western Shore has the same rural vibe with the same slow encroachment of the exhurbs of DC. A bit of the Eastern Shore is in the orbit of the more urban Wilmington Delaware. The Eastern shore is generally conservative, politically and was very Methodist for a long long time, though the energy of that faith has faded a bit, to be replaced by some of the recently resurgent fundamentalist sects. The area is as flat as Texas and the nice thing to look at is the Bay and its tributaries. There was, and still is, a lot of enthusiastic waterfowl hunters all over. The open farm fields and sporadic forest cover make for good deer hunting too. If you didn’t move to the Eastern Shore from the closer in suburbs you probably have little problem with hunting and the shooting sports.

The Western Panhandle, This region is also rural in flavor, but more Appalachian in flavor. It has some faded rust belt industries, often connected to the B&O railroads. It used to include Frederick City, back when a commute from Frederick to Baltimore or DC was considered impractical, but now people are increasingly making such a hellish long commute. From Frederick and even from higher up the pan-handle… from Hagerstown. Why? For cheaper homes. So Frederick and it’s surrounds are just becoming part of the megalopolis of the Balt/DC exhurbs. But most of this part of this region is deer hunting WITH rifle territory, so the shooting sports is also well received here. It is generally conservative, politically, with some residual Democrats left over from when there was more industry and unions. These Dems are more Blue Dog than not. THIS part of the state actually has a bit of a limit on how many deer you can harvest in season. There is enough hunting in the panhandle that
whitetail aren’t the nuisance they are in suburbs, reproducing unchecked among the mini-vans.

Baltimore, The City that Reads, (changed by some jokers to the City that Bleeds) Baltimore is a rustbelt city, fading industry, port services and the like. It has "fading city problems" that you see in lots of declining urban areas, and always seems to be on the cusp of turning it around. It’s big problem is heroine, while DC was more a crack town. And I’m sure the two rural parts of the state are awash in Oxycontin and Meth-Amphetamines. Well not away in heroine here and meth there, but… you know what I mean. Anyway, it’s a city and it’s the big concentration of population in MD, so it is the powerhouse, politically. It’s Liberal in political outlook and practially a machine-run town. When Shaefer was elected governor out of the Mayor’s office, they didn’t call him the Governor of Maryland, they called him the Governor of Baltimore, because it seemed like he paid little or no attention to the rest of the state. Why should he? He could control the state from that one big constituency, vote-wise. And he did. There are standard city problems with violent crime and for a while Baltimore vied with DC and Detroit for being the murder capital of the country. This large behemoth of a city is, naturally, anti-gun. Current governor is Martin O’Malley, is VERY anti-gun and was also… SURPISE!… mayor before going to the Statehouse.

DC Suburbs, MY area. Where I grew up. Relatively wealthy part of the state from the thriving industry in the local urban center. DC is a company town. It has one real industry. Government. Tourism is a distant second. And unlike a fading fishery, or loss of steel mills and canneries, or diverted port traffic to more convenient areas, the Industry in DC has been growing very steadily since the Roosevelt administration. There are government workers… a steady middle class, and the more wealthy government contractors and the even more wealthy law-degreed lobbiest types. This part of Maryland is a huge revenue source. But the votes in Baltimore get the spending to happen in Baltimore, so there is a bit of resentment over that. Recent political developments… the Baltimore city population has shrunk, and the suburbs have grown. The DC suburbs grow almost uninterrupted into the Baltimore suburbs at this point. So now the suburbs are starting to flex more political muscle.
The previous governor, Ehrlich, could never have been elected against the Baltimore Democrat machine if it weren’t for the suburbs growing tired of sending their tax money to a crumbling city, allying with the more conservative rural parts of the city. Ehrlich was the first Republican elected since Agnew in the 60s. The DC suburbs are generally "limousine liberal" types. They only get pro-gun AFTER they’ve been mugged. Soccer moms don’t like guns. Half the lobbiests in the area are Democrat, they don’t like guns. Yuppies don’t like guns on anyone but their guards and the police they summon to protect them.

Now, all of these descriptions, are, obviously, gross generalizations, but it is a generalization you can live with. Yes there are Hippy-Commies deep in the panhandle on a 250 acre spread past Cumberland, and there is pro-life gun-enthusiasts in a row house near Baltimore harbor that thinks Reagan went a BIT too easy on the Russians, I’m sure. But the rule of thumb is the rule of thumb. Generally true, and less precise.

Now, for Firearm-Specific Maryland politics…

Summary: Maryland is majority liberal Democrat because of the 2 major liberal suburban/urban areas. Maryland doesn’t like guns.

Long Story:

Maryland is one of the Seven Sisters. The 7 states with the most egregious restrictions on the first civil right, the right to keep and bear arm to protect yourself and your country’s liberty. They are, Maryland, Massachusetts, California, the District of Columbia, New York, Illinois, and New Jersey. Anyway, they are all states (or a quasi-state like DC) that have a massive political influence from major metropolitan areas, and major metropolitan areas, that are not inundated with fundamentalist Christians with THEIR subsequent outlook (see Salt Lake, Dallas, etc.), tend to be dominated by Leftist/Liberals.

Have you noticed that? A state like Wyoming or Idaho, with no HUGE metropolis to push it Left, never has gun control threats, while recently Pennsylvania HAS been seeing runs at it’s citizen’s rights because of politicians from Philadelphia. But it’s a big state with a lot of "Rest of The State" to balance the population from the cities. So Detroit or Seattle may want more gun control thanks to their political leanings, but Michigan has a lot more to it, and so does Washington. There is a lot of "Rest of The State" in California and New York and Illinois, but the megalopolis’ there are enough to overwhelm the ballot box.

Why, deep down, do the urban areas vote for gun control? Honestly and without just flying to "Well them Leftist Pinkos are just ornery cuss’ that want to enslave me." Without assigning them evil intent, I’d say the reason is fear. And not from law abiding bubbas rising up and marching on the cities. Crime is bad in the cities. People are murdered there by guns. The easiest reaction is to try to get rid of the guns, and they are unwilling to try to dislodge the crime. Stopping the crime is harder and it is easier to appear to be doing something by banning the guns. If it doesn’t impact the crime they can say they tried.

We know, from bitter experience, that this ‘try’ is ineffective at curbing crime, that it is mere symbolism, and that all it does is perturb the law abiding. And more recently effective measure to actually CURB crime have been tried and they have succeeded. Rudy Guiliani is pro gun control, but while mayor there was no further restrictions on gun ownership. That remained static. But crime plummeted by other means implemented by the mayor. Other areas where his method has been tried have also born fruit. So now there is actually a crime reduction method that has nothing to do with gun control. As that method is stumbled upon by other jurisdictions the clamoring to "Do SOMETHING!" about urban crime will have another remedy apart from gun-control.

My hope is someone will have the will to do this in Baltimore. And DC. It would be a boon to the whole state, as it has been a boon to NYC.

There is reason for hope in Maryland. The uber-Leftist Martin O’Malley, our too-Hip-for-school governor vetoed a bill that would allow MD cops to sell their old weapons to Beretta when they upgraded their sidearms. O’Malley had the Liberal notion that this would put used guns on the street in the hands of law abiding, and didn’t like that. But he was overwhelmed with a unanimous override of his veto, partly because of gun rights but mainly because he called the legislature back into special session to solve a deficit problem, and the lawmakers were in no mood to go along with political hay-making when they were working overtime to find more money and selling used guns to a reputable gun maker for re-hab and resale actually saves the state some money.

That is a HUGE win. In this state, at least.

There is hope. Maybe some Democrat will attack crime in Baltimore or DC the way mayor Guiliani did. Maybe the Supreme Court will rule on Heller in such a way that there will be a sea change in the District. Maybe, after a few stumbles, the GOP will be resurgent and there will be more of a two party system in Maryland instead of the current One Party Rule. There are grassroots efforts to liberalize Maryland’s very restrictive concealed-carry laws from May-Issue to Shall-Issue. But it will be a while. DC might actually have its own gun store and a Shall-Issue law before Maryland loosens its tyranny. Heck it has to be turning around. I joined the NRA. Armed Canadian moved here and will be voting in 2 years. That's 2 more voters...

MBtGE has lived in multiple places, so his attachment to any one place is more tenuous.
So why do I live here? Because it’s my home. I’ve lived here all my life. Perhaps I can change it from the inside. Shift the gun laws by supporting those that try to breath some sanity to the overly restrictive. If I leave it’s a bit more surrender to the people that are afraid when someone other than the gov’t has power, either from money or from the bility to effectively protect themselves.

I bet it’s why
Jay G of Marooned lives in Massachusetts. It's his home. And MA has MUCH worse gun control tyranny than MD. MBtGE has lived in multiple places, so his attachment to any one place is more tenuous. So he can live in Virginia and criticize me for living in Maryland. I'd consider living in VA if they actually had a rational ROAD SYSTEM there. And stay out of the left lane, Virginia Drivers, when you are in Maryland. We like to go faster than the 54 or 55 that you prefer.

When we look for land to buy for hunting purposes, the MBtGE and I, we look to the Northwest of the DC, to be convenient for both of us. I love the area around Hancock, the narrowest part of MD. MBtGE does too, as long as it isn’t IN Maryland. He refused to buy property in an area that doesn’t trust him to carry a concealed handgun. And I can understand that attitude. He has a license for Virginia, WVa, and Pennsylvania. We’ll buy a place to shoot deer and camp in one of those states.
Or he up and will and I'll just glom on. Though I'd rather not. I'm hoping we find adjacent lots.