Saturday, May 10, 2008

Carbine Re-Thoughts

I am rethinking, in my usual navel-gazing way, my .45 caliber carbine desire. Oh I still WANT one, but the available choices to me are less than ideal. To review, my requirements are: A carbine or short rifle that shoots the .45 ACP pistol cartridge and uses the same magazine as the 1911 pistol.

In current production is the MechTech kit, where you attach a 1911 lower to a rifle, essentially. It’s a cheap solution, if you already have a spare 1911 lower lying around. I don’t. It’s also a bit UGLY. A dog’s breakfast. Woof.

The best contender is the Marlin Camp Carbine Model 45. Ideally, it is perfect. But the ideal never jibes with the real. It’s only available used and replacement parts for commonly broken components are getting hard to find. And it’s popularity to people that think like I do is making the used gun market prices steadily increase, so it is getting pricey. I have never handled one, but the close-up pictures I have seen give me the impression that it’s a cheaply made gun, and that is upsetting. It would be fine if it only cost $300, but it’s going for twice that. It looks like it’s a $300 gun because it WAS a $300 gun. Cheaply made makes me think of possibilities it might work shabbily, too. Jumping on an available Camps Carbine would not be the impulse buy it would have been 6 months ago, even if I had money burning a hole in my pocket.

The other option is reproduction DeLisle carbines. The original ones were bolt action Enfields, shortened, suppressed and remade to take a .45 ACP with a 1911 mags. Pretty neat! There were only 200 made so original are INSANELY expensive and not something you’d shoot recreationally today. Rhineland Arms used to make a conversion kit so you and your favorite gunsmith could make something that looked like the original. These kits are not available new today, and are almost as rare as the original rifle, for my purposes. Plus, the only way I’d want a bolt action carbine is if the silencer/suppressor was still on it, and I’m not ready for that ATF headache.

There are other option for a .45 carbine, or rumors of manufacturers releasing a version soon. Companies like Hi-Point, Kel-Tec (I get those 2 confused), the KRISS, and the Berretta Storm. They make them for .45 ACP magazines other than the 1911 pistol variety is the problem. The KRISS takes a Glock 21 magazine, I believe, for an example, and you can specify with the Hi-Point (or is it the Kel-Tec) among a plethora of mag types (just not 1911). It’s kind of odd, this whole in the market, considering the obvious demand for carbines of this sort on one side, and the popularity of the 1911 on the other side, yet the twain do no meet. It’s not like there aren’t higher capacity mags for 1911 in case you want your carbine to shoot more than eight before a reload.

So all this thinking has me rethinking the whole model. Why get a .45 carbine in the first place? I have a carbine sized rifle in .357 that goes with a revolver if I ever need a non-scary, handy, SHTF bug out trunk gun. In a TEOWAWKI situation, the .308 rifle with a .45 pistol is dandy. I wouldn’t want a .45 rifle, in that case, nor a 7.62x51mm pistol (!!!!!).

If I keep thinking like that, then I demote a few more items on the Master List from Secondary, to Tertiary. Which is probably good. I’d like to concentrate on Using over Accumulating, and shifting resources from guns to ammo isn’t bad. Might as well demote the Mini-14, too. If I NEEDED a .223 gun, there’d be plenty lying around on the ground that I can pick up for free. Hope THAT doesn’t happen, but who really wants a TEOTWAWKI situation to come to pass. [review: SHTF is when ‘stuff hits the fan’ or temporary societal breakdown, like if terrorists lit off a 10 Kiloton bomb on the DC Mall. TEOTWAWKI is ‘the end of the world as we know it’ or a permanent societal breakdown, like if 500 1 megaton bombs pop off all over the world majors cities over the space of an hour, or if Jimmy Carter gets re-elected with Al Gore as his VP in 2008.]


Anonymous said...

You can still get enfield .45 conversion kits:

I am sure many other manufacturers offer them as well. They are quite common.

New Jovian Thunderbolt said...

Ooo, good tip!

Anonymous said...

I will probably get a CX4 in .45acp soon. It will get me the utility of common mags with my Glock 21.

I will probably also get a silencer for it (eventually).

You are the one that sold me on this idea. It's funny how you over think and second guess yourself. Cracks me up.