Category Archives: Guns

Banning The AR15

The AR 15 has been a controversial firearm in recent months. Recent mass shootings have put the AR 15 in focus and much of the blame has been put on the modern weapon. What is an AR15, and what purpose do they serve the modern sportsman?  How are they different from other commonly used rifles.

History

The AR 15 was developed by Eugene Stoner for the company Armalite. The design intention was to develop a combat weapon that was accurate lightweight and capable of replacing the M-14. The designation AR15, means that is derived from being the 15th design for Armalite

It was Colt that developed the military version known s the M16 and the civilian version which kept the label AR-15. The M16 was capable of both semi-automatic and fully automatic mode. The M16 has evolved into the M-4 a shorter version with a 16 inch barrel that has the option with the selector switch of semiautomatic or 3 round burst mode. Todays AR-15 has evolved into todays most popular firearm in America that is flexible inexpensive to own and shoot as well as accurate. The M16 and its military derivatives remain illegal and unavailable for civilian use except under some very limited situations.

What Is an AR 15 ?

The AR15 is a lightweight, 5.56×45mm, magazine-fed, gas-operated semi-automatic rifle. It was designed to be manufactured with the extensive use of aluminum alloys and synthetic materials resulting  in a lightweight, intermediate cartridge magazine-fed, air-cooled rifle with a rotating lock bolt, actuated by direct impingement gas operation.

Todays AR 15 comprises of the following componants.

  1. An Upper Assemblyis basically the barrel  and the reciever with the bolt assembly
  2. A Lower assembly which consists of the Magazine receiver, trigger and housing sear and hammer
  3. .Furniture which is the traditionally rails the  plastic pieces such as the Handguard and shoulder stock.
  4. Accessories which are the optonal devices such as opticss, sights flashlights and  slings.

According to the BATF the only part that is considered a firearm is the lower.

The AR-15 is often referred to as a high powered rifle. This is false.  The AR-15 uses a  5.56 x 45 (or .223 cal) cartridge. Which is low powered by most rifle standards. It is a souped up .22,  Most gun enthusiast would classify the AR 15 as an intermediate powered weapon.

It’s because of the smaller cartridge size that it becomes high capacity. The same holds true with handguns, a 9mm Glock 17uses 17 round Magazines, While a traditional Colt 1911 magazine typically is 7 Rounds. The rule of thumb is smaller ammo – larger capacity. Larger more devesting ammo is less capacity.

Scout vs AR15 Magazines

The picture above shows a comparison, from left to right of a 30 round AR mag vs a 20 rnd Mag vs a 10 Round .308 magazine.  It’s because the smaller less powerful bullet allows for stuffing more of them into a magazine that the magazines become “High capacity”.

The AR 15 is modular, which accounts for it’s different appearance. It doesn’t have the sleek wooden stock of other rifles, and has a lot of polymer that makes it lightweight and adaptable. The buttstock is adjustable which makes it adaptable for shooters of all sizes.

The AR 15 is semiautomatic, or autoloading. The technology is 100 years old and is used in all sorts of handguns rifles .22 caliber and shotguns.  An autoloader simply reloads another round after a shot is fired. Every shot must be prefaced by an independent trigger pull.

Why an AR-15?

The interwebs have been flooded on social media with the proclamation,” Nobody needs an AR-15?”

The truth is that probably nobody needs an AR15.  It just happens to be very well suited for a variety of uses. It has become America’s most popular rifle. The National Shooting Sports Foundation estimates there are roughly 5 million to10 million AR-15 rifles owned in the United States,   There is nothing inherent in the AR -15 that makes it more dangerous than any other gun. The AR does have many features that make it desirable to a wide range of gun owners.

Hunters like them because of the light weight and accuracy, The Magazines can be smaller capacity, for shooting coyotes and feral hogs.  The high accuracy is useful for groundhogs and prairie dog. The small caliber is suitable for smaller deer that can be found in the south.

The AR 15 is popular in rural areas for home protection because of its inherent maneuverability. It has more range than a shotgun or handgun, and useful for protecting one’s home and property, against two or four legged predators. Ranchers have found the AR-15 useful, it doesn’t take up in a 4 wheeler, or pickup truck accurate, and capable of just about any assignment it is called upon.

The shooting range is where most AR-15s get their workout.  The ammo and gun are inexpensive and allows one to shoot more. The more one shoots the more shooters get proficient.  A good AR-15 can be bought for around $500 dollars, a lot less than most high powered rifles.  The AR-15 has been described as a Barbie doll for men, or as the Lego of guns. It is very customizable, Furniture and accessories can be swapped out and added as desired. Adjustable stocks fit shooter of all size, and the light recoil is painless to the recoil sensitive.

Summary

The recent school shooting in Florida has many people calling for a ban on the so called “assault rifles” or specifically the AR-15.  I hoped to show that the AR-15 is not unique from many another commonly accepted gun. It isn’t more powerful, nor any more deadly than any other gun. There are more crimes committed with handguns than with all rifles. The support to ban the AR-15 is nothing more than a thinly veiled attempt to ban all guns.

Ruger Gunsite Scout (.308)

The Ruger Gunsite Scout (GSR) has been out for 6 years now. There are lots of good reviews out on it. What follows isn’t so much a review but just a few observations about the gun that I own. My own GSR is a stainless steel 18-inch barrel with a laminate stock.

Stainless Scout with 5 rnd PMAG and Thread Protector on the 18 inch Barrel

The late great Colonel Jeff Cooper defined the concept of the scout rifle as ” one gun to own if you only have one.” He also warned, “Beware the man with one gun, for he probably knows how to use it.”   There has been controversy about the concept of one gun for all purposes along with the concerns whether it is very good at anything in specific.

The 18″ barrel qualifies it as a carbine. it’s short lightweight and effective with the .308  chambering.  It’s light weight with the ghost ring adjustable rear aperture sight and a non-glare, protected blade front sight allows for quick make ready aiming. When equipped with a low powered forward mounted scope, a fast aim with both eyes opened is easily accomplished.  The gun comes with an  Accurate-Mag 10 round steel box magazine.   The big magazine is conspicuous and awkward looking.  It is, however, functional. and trouble free. I purchased two extra plastic magazines a 10 Round Ruger and a 5  round Magpul Pmag. Neither are as obtrusive.

The GSR is a good shooter, I can shoot within a 3-inch circle. ( 1.5 moa)  a better shooter would be able to tighten it up a bit. I use the forward mounted Leupold FX II 2.5X28 mounted forward of the receiver. The scope is bright and sharp at 2.5 magnification. The scope is mounted using a see through mount which allows the usage of the ghost ring sights if I choose.  Choices are good.  The rifle is soft shooting for a .308, the butt has a soft foam butt pad,  There are also three spacers that can be installed in the butt to adjust the pull to the shooter.

While the concept of a Cooper defined scout rifle might be considered obsolete by some shooters and may consider the light weight AR15s a better choice as  the ” one gun to own if you only have one.” The RGS excels on certain properties. The .308 round is devastating and is capable of bringing down just about any large game in North America.  The bolt action is simple, reliable and practically failproof.  While a magazine exchange is quick and easy,  rounds can be singly loaded into the chamber because of the large open receiver..

This rifle now has 3 Mags.  The original Mag is a 10 rounder,. It is black and simple looking. It’s about 5″ long and extends 3 1/4″ below the stock.  Ruger is pretty proud of them.  They can be bought for around $50.00 dollars.  They are rugged and will probably last the life of the gun.

I also have  a 10 round Ruger polymer mag, These are a little shorter, 4″ in length and extend 2.5″ below the stock. It looks less cumbersome and it will be less likely to interfere while shooting prone. The magazine has a dust cover which can protect the rounds and magazine from collecting debris while carried in a pocket. The lips of the magazine are thin and somewhat flexible. This allows top loading of the magazine from the open chamber.  The next best thing to using stripper clips.  Ruger warns that loading a mag this way should be done sparingly because it could cause excess wear on the thin lips.  There are reports of uncapped magazines unloading rounds after the mags have been sitting a while.  Using the cap will prevent this from happening.  Despite the thin lips the magazines are well made, and I prefer them over the steel mags even though they cost about half as much as the steel ones, I think they are a better magazine

The third magazine for the scout is a 5 round Pmag. It’s a little bit shorter (3 1/4″) than the 10 round polymer Ruger It only extends about 1 3/4″ below the stock.  This makes for more comfortable carrying, through brush while hunting without snagging, The 5 rounder is actually a 6 rounder, There is a tab on the underside of the follower that can be cut off to enable 6th round loading  I found these at a couple dollars more at $27.00. A ten round version is two dollars more.

Left to Right: 5 round Magpul PMAG – Ruger OEM 20 Round Steel Mag – Ruger 10 Round Polymer Mag

Overall I prefer the plastic mags over the supplied steel ones.  Not only are they cheaper, they are smaller and quieter. They aren’t as loose in the magwell as the steel mags.  Three round mags are available, they will install flush with the stock, and might be more suitable for hunters.  I don’t believe I will bother with them.  I will likely purchase several more, but I don’t have a clear preference of either polymer mag and will increase my stocks of both 5 and 10 rounder. All the same, though I will continue using my overpriced original equipment steel mag. It works and will probably last as long as the scout will.

The trigger on the scout is pretty good, not quite like breaking a glass rod but it is positive with about a 6 lb pull.  The bolt action is a little stiff and initially, had a raspy feel to it.  It smoothed out after a while but the bolt likes to be operated with authority. A very thin coat of lube helps too. When the bolt is pulled back firmly the casing will be ejected with full authority. If one pulls back on it a little gently one can remove the brass by hand for reloading.

My stainless GSR came with a flash suppressor installed.     It also came with a stainless thread protector.  I removed the flash suppressor, and installed the thread protector, resulting in the gun being about 2″ shorter.   I haven’t shot it under darkened conditions yet, but I will reinstall the suppressor if it is a problem shooting.

Part of the Cooper definition of a scout rifle is a low powered forward mounted optic.  I chose the  Leupold FX II 2.5X28 mounted forward of the receiver.on the GSRs Picatinny rail.  The forward mount is controversial, some people like it others hate it. I like it.  I think that the people that don’t like it don’t like it cause they are used to the closer mounted scopes, don’t value or have issues with the two eyes opened concept.  I like it because for me it is fast to get on sight and target.  It has the added benefit of keeping the receiver clear. The problem is the line of sight using the high see through mounts can cause the shooter to get a chin weld over a much prefered cheek weld while aiming and shooting

Field ready GSR

The Scout concept is about one gun for all purposes.  I don’t know if there is any such thing. There are some things the GSR excels in others that it isn’t going to be the right equipment.

I think the GSR would be a poor choice for (sub)urban home defense.  The .308 is powerful and will over penetrate most walls.  An AR, Shotgun or handgun could be a better choice.

The GSR is not a weapon of war nor a zombie killer It’s a bolty after all.

It’s not a 1000yd Sniper rifle.

The .308 ammo is just too expensive to be much of a plinker.

There are some things that it excels at though:

The light weight makes it a great brush gun.  It’s short and light and this makes the GSR an easy carry.   The safety isn’t just a simple trigger block, but a combination trigger and firing pin block.  A forward mounted scope allows very fast to shoulder aim and shoot.

The GSR is an ideal deer stand rifle, its great for close quarters and the .308 is sufficiently powerful to take down any deer or hog for at least 300 yards are less.

A ranch or truck gun, Its compact size doesn’t require much room to maneuver, and its a very rugged reliable gun and can handle being knocked about.

 

Armed Adventure in NY

Elizabeth Enderli,  a Marine Veteran, wanted to visit and pay her respects at the New York 911 memorial with her friend. She ran into a problem

Elizabeth Anne Enderli, 31, had no idea her Texas concealed-carry permit was null in New York when she asked Ground Zero security on Saturday where she could store her 9mm and .380 caliber pistols, cops said.

The blunder cost the Marine Corps veteran and mom of three a night in jail — and prompted her Lone Star state pals to scoff at New York’s un-Texas-like gun laws.

While, legally licensed, New Yorkers can carry here in Texas, We are banned from New York even though we can carry in just about any other civilized place.

Elizabeth is to return to New York to face the charges. A very expensive proposition. Lawyers and airfare isn’t cheap these days particularly in New York. We don’t know how long this is going to take nor even what the outcome is going to be. What we do know is that she could use some help.  They have set up a Go Fund Me site, Please stop by and donate what you can.

An Austin Visit

Austin Bicycles
Rent a Bike

Went to Austin for a couple of days to the National Safety Council Convention and made a visit the State house.  I made a few observations.

  • In Texas a rifle is considered to be safety equipment. A few of the exhibitors were having drawings in which a rifle was the first prize.
  • If you are a CHL holder you will get treated special and allowed to take the short line and avoid the metal detectors when you visit the capitol building.
  • They love their bicycles in Austin.
  • Great entertainment can be had sitting on a bench on 6th street. We had finished dinner and heard a “Temptations” group across the street.  We listened to the concert for about an hour .. Very nice.
  • The blue bonnets were out in force.
  • Yeah, Austin is weird.

Justice New Jersey Style

The video of Ray Rice beating the snot out of his girlfriend was shocking, even more shocking is the light punishment he got with the approval of  Atlantic County Prosecutor Jim McClain and Superior Court Judge Michael Donio.

Following the release of new footage that seems to show now former-Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice punching his then-fiancée in the face, it’s important to remember that the prosecutor who let Rice off with a slap on the wrist is now trying to throw the book at a young mother of two who tried to protect herself and her family from violence.

Atlantic County Prosecutor Jim McClain approved an application for admitting Rice into New Jersey’s Pre-Trial Intervention program that allowed the NFL star to avoid jail time. Instead, Rice has to undergo counseling and will be immediately incarcerated if he does something else wrong.

New Jersey Superior Court Judge Michael Donio issued the final sentencing, accepting Rice into the program.

In another case 27-year-old mother of two Shaneen Allen is being prosecuted for taking a legally owned and legally carried handgun across the bridge into New Jersey. She should have known better, but at worst case she made an honest mistake.

Meanwhile, McClain is working to put 27-year-old mother of two Shaneen Allen — herself a first-time offender — into jail for at least three years, maybe even a decade.

Allen didn’t punch anyone out in an elevator. She simply didn’t know that her Pennsylvania concealed-carry permit was not valid in New Jersey.

In October 2013, Allen was pulled over for a minor traffic offense. She dutifully informed the officer of her gun and presented her concealed-carry permit. She was arrested.

Allen had a gun because she had been robbed twice in 2013 and feared for her children. Following her arrest, and McClain’s insistence that she face the maximum possible penalty for her oversight, Allen reportedly lost her job.

Judge Donio is also tied to the Allen case. He accepted McClain’s decision to deny Allen entry into the same pre-trial program Rice was allowed to enter.

Yeah the same Donio and McClain that let Ray Rice off so easy refuses to give Shaneen Allen a break and are working hard to get a 3 to 10 year sentence. This is called Justice Jersey style, where the rich and famous get the breaks and the single mom who  who didn’t realize that New Jersey wasn’t one of the 30 states that would be legal for this CHL holder to carry in, she gets the full prosecution

Thoughts on the NFL Ad Ban

The censorous  bastards of the  NFL are at it again. They found it to offensively violent for NFL football fans. After viewing the ad its hard to understand why this is banned and caveman crushing dinosaurs are permitted.

Maybe there is an explanation, as offered by The Gun Nut. David E. Petzal in his Field and Stream article.

After the rejection, Daniel Defense offered to replace the logo—a gun—with a slogan, but the NFL said sorry, no way, again.

It’s possible that this is nothing more than hypocrisy. But the real reason, I think, is that the NFL is trying to protect its investments. The oversized guy who crashes his $150,000 custom SUV into a house and breaks down the door with his fists to strangle the family inside may be someone’s number one draft pick, and all those millions his team spent on him would go right down the drain if some terrified homeowner shot him in self-defense.

And we can’t have that now, can we?  It’s…un-American.

Makes sense to me.

Colorado Recall

Yesterday the Voters in Colorado Senate Districts 3 and 11 voted to fire their State Senators.  Most pundits today will say this is about Guns and the Second Amendment. While this is a victory for those of us who favor our right to keep and bear arms. Senators Morse and Giron voted with their party elitist  and against what their constituents wanted. They sold out the voters  to please Democratic fundraisers and Billionaire NYC Mayor Bloomberg..

Colorado was in a heated battle to add more restrictive gun laws including limiting magazine sizes. and evil black guns.  The thing is that both these senators yielded to the pressure of their party  while it was real clear that that the people who voted for them felt much differently. The victory last night was for the voter and democracy even more so than for the gun owner, Last night the voter got the last word and that is how it should be.

A Tale of Two Cities.

This has been an incredible week one of shock horror, and courage.  The the differences and similarities tell a lot of about who we are as as a nation.  The Boston Marathon was bombed and 5 Deaths and 160 + seriously maimed and wounded.  The tiny city of West Texas was virtually blown up with at least 15 people killed . 200 hurt hundreds of homes destroyed.

Drawing a bead in Watertown
Drawing a bead in Watertown

The Boston bombing had all the drama, the week unfolded like a Diehard movie, What’s interesting is that the agencies seemed so reluctant to share information. Its like they didn’t trust the people.  When they released the photos identifying the bombers it was just hours until they were shaken loose.  Watertown, Cambridge and Boston were locked down, people told to stay off the streets. on Friday Boston was under siege, and in effect a police state. The only folks allowed on the streets were police. businesses were closed while police searched private property, while the folks locked themselves into their house.It was only when the lockdown was released that it was a citizen that found the younger Dzhokhar  Its interesting to note that for the most part the citizens were unarmed and defenseless. while the Dzhokhar brothers were well armed even though they didn’t have a permit.  Pistol permits n Mass are on a “May Issue” basis and left to the cities discretion.

West, Texas.has been all but ignored.  The explosion killed 14 people most of them were unpaid volunteer firerfighters and EMTs. 200 people injured Dozens of lives were spared because volunteers firefighters were evacuating the nursing home right up to the time of the explosion. .These people were self reliant, left to their own devices to respond and save themselves.

The main stream media doesn’t care to much about Texas especially rural Texas. They think and act different. They don’t understand the lack of reliance on government, and are a long drive away from the Major TV markets of the coasts.   These are the people who arm themselves to protect themselves.

President Obama will visit Texas this week, to reap money for the Democratic party. He will not visit West Texas to offer support.  Nothing in it for him I guess, not his kind of people.

 

Lies and Damn Lies

It’s true, some people don’t like guns and can’t understand any legitimate reason for the law abiding to want them.  There is no point in debating or  arguing with these people, Their fears and opinions are a result of emotion and feelings, and logic and reasoning have no place in this opinion making process.  The problem with these people is that when they attempt to use logic and reasoning to make a point they tend use lousy data, and semi-facts. President Obama isn’t above using crappy data and quasi-facts.

Obama said in one of his speeches, ““Why wouldn’t we want to close the loophole that allows as many as 40 percent of all gun purchases to take place without a background check?”  If on e digs around to find where he gets his figures from.:

There are two key problems with the president’s use of this statistic: The numbers are about two decades old, yet he acts as if they are fresh, and he refers to “purchases” or “sales” when in fact the original report concerned “gun acquisitions” and “transactions.”  Those are much broader categories of data.

As we noted before, the White House said the figure comes from a 1997 Institute of Justice report, written by Philip Cook of Duke University and Jens Ludwig of the University of Chicago.

This study was based on data collected from a survey in 1994, the same year that the Brady Act requirements for background checks came into effect. In fact, the questions concerned purchases in 1993 and 1994, and the Brady Act went into effect in early 1994 — meaning that some, if not many, of the guns were bought in a pre-Brady environment.

Digging deeper, we found that the survey sample was just 251 people. (The survey was done by telephone, using a random-digit-dial method, with a response rate of 50 percent.) With this sample size, the 95 percent confidence interval will be plus or minus six percentage points.

Moreover, when asked whether the respondent bought from a licensed firearms dealer, the possible answers included “probably was/think so” and “probably not,” leaving open the possibility the purchaser was mistaken. (The “probably not” answers were counted as “no.”)

When all of the “yes” and “probably was” answers were added together, that left 35.7 percent of respondents indicating they did not receive the gun from a licensed firearms dealer. Rounding up gets you to 40 percent, although as we noted before, the survey sample is so small it could also be rounded down to 30 percent.

While it is unlikely that that the real figure is anywhere near 40%, what isn’t addressed is; Who is acquiring these guns without a background check and what are the conditions?

There are lots of legitimate reasons people buy handguns without getting a background check each time.   Guns are a popular gift, A family member may buy a gun for a child or spouse, while they might have undergo the NICS background check it is in essence avoided by the the ultimate receiver.   Friends often trade, swap or loan guns with each other.   . We typically know our friends and are a better judge of charactor than the government will ever be..   Another method that guns may change hands without an invasive background check is through a bequeath.  Our guns will typically out last us.   If I drop dead my beloved Equality will dispose or keep any guns that I might have as she sees fit.  This is certainly more civilized than letting the probate courts and government NICS checks get involved.

The anti-gun zealots cry out. “Think of the lives it will save.” The thing is that no one has been able to prove that the NICS system as instituted has saved lives or reduced crime, but when it was instituted it made people feel good. It was then and is today an emotional reaction and not a reaction based on facts or real logic. Criminals will find a way to possess guns no matter how hard we make it for the legitimate gun owner.

In the recent well publicised masacres tightened background checks would have made no difference.

  • Adam Lanza wouldn’t bother with a background check to steal the guns, from his mother. He probably would have passed any background checks anyway, because apparently he had never been committed. and had a clean record.
  • James Holmes of the Aurora shooting went through the NICS background check. He had no criminal record and was never commited at any mental institution.
  • Seung-Hui Cho did purchase his guns and used the NICS system. He probably lied on the application though. It shouldn’t be a shock that a criminally insane man might lie on an appliction to buy a gun that he likely intended to murder a bunch of people with.

It may be worth noting that none of these guys bought their weapons at a gun show.

These guys typically have a clean criminal record but are known to have mental stability issues. While one could make an argument that  nuts and cooks should be always reported to the Feds, who makes the decisions on who is dangerous and who is not.

 

Tugging on Supermans Cape.

There are a a couple of stories that surfaced this week. That illustrate what seems to be a trend with  gun control movements and their lack of understang of the folks they are trying to effect.

Starbucks Boycott

It was about 2 years ago, that Californians decided to make a statement by making use  of California’s open carry law. The were allowed to open carry their handguns as long as they were unloaded. Folks started taking their exposed guns into all sorts of restaurants and meeting places.

The fight for retailers heated up in early January when gun enthusiasts in northern California began walking into Starbucks and other businesses to test state laws that allow gun owners to carry weapons openly in public places. As it spread to other states, gun control groups quickly complained about the parade of firearms in local stores.

Some were spontaneous, with just one or two gun owners walking into a store. Others were organized parades of dozens of gun owners walking into restaurants with their firearms proudly at their sides.

The panty wetting gun banners got all upset at seeing guns just dangling of folks hips right out there in the open.  The gunbanners complained and one by one many of the establishments adopted a “No Guns Allowed” policy.  Starbucks stood their ground to continued their policy to allow folks who were legally carrying to exercise their right under the law. Continue reading Tugging on Supermans Cape.