Showing posts with label .357mag. Show all posts
Showing posts with label .357mag. Show all posts

Monday, November 4, 2013

Wilderness Walk Out Guns



I saw this video from Iraqvet888 then thought about it off and on all day.The basic scenario is that you find yourself stuck in the woods somewhere then have to walk out. I believe they mentioned Alaska but I would keep it more generic.

For parameters to me the "walk" portion means you are limited to 1 long gun and 1 pistol.

Long gun- My immediate thought was between a .22 rifle and a 12 gauge shotgun. After a few minute's of consideration the shotgun won hands down. A 12 gauge shotgun with a variety of shells can take anything from little squirrels to (obviously at fairly close range) the biggest bears. I'm not worried about taking tiny game (let alone a right fight with people) past 40-50 meters so I'd rather have the versatility of the shotgun. Also since this is a limited time scenario (vs batman in the boondocks) the weight of shotgun ammo is not a huge issue.

A pump shotgun is ample for self defense against animals and people in anything but a crazy SHTF situation.

I would take a Remington 870 with a 28" barrel and a mix of shotgun shells all the way from #6 shot to slugs. Another pump shotgun like a Mossberg would be fine also.

Pistol- If I was gaming the scenario for the ultimate wilderness survival handgun it would be a .22 of some sort. This would be to save shotgun ammo by taking closer, easier shots on smaller game with the pistol. A .22 mag revolver of some sort would probably be ideal, given that ammo is limited to what I'm carrying anyway might as well have the extra power over the more common .22lr.

That being said realistically if I was getting stuck in an accident or whatever I would be carrying a centerfire pistol for defensive purposes, probably a .357 mag revolver so that is what I would have on my waist by default. If I move to Alaska I'll buy a .44 magnum revolver so I would be carrying that.

What are your ideal wilderness walkout guns? Do you actually take them to the woods with you?

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Long Day Of DIY Plus Random Linkeage

My weekend evaporated into 2 home improvement projects. On the good side some stuff got done. We made legitimate, tangible progress on the two things that will really make our residence optimal.

Putting laminate flooring into one room stalled out yesterday. It was dinner time plus I needed materials so that was a pause. Got the stuff to move forward today.

However since that project just wasn't getting done in a day we decided to put up an interior french door instead. Somehow we missed that being a fairly complicated thing to do. Anyway it was a complete Charlie Foxtrot. Numerous google searches and 3, count them three, trips to the hardware store ensued. There were literally blood, sweat and tears. Thankfully we all came out alive and more or less intact.

It would be an exaggeration to call it an unmitigated disaster. Eventually the door did get up and I think it will work out quite well. Maybe it was a bit more like say, the British misadventure in the Falklands. A situation where something fairly easy got quite complicated, partially through self inflicted problems then ended up in a win eventually.

I have a post on DIY stuff coming up.

Since I spent all day breaking then trying to fix stuff my brain is fried so you will get linkage. 

This post on The Smith and Wesson Model 19: The Perfect Police Man's Revolver is excellent. The Magnum K frame was probably the peak of revolvers as combat handguns. The only real improvement would be a more corrosive resistant finish and the M19's cousin the M66 has that. I would not hesitate for a second to take a Model 19 into the woods or for that matter carry it in town. They are very accurate, rugged/ reliable within reason (ain't a Glock) and heavy. Heavy is good, heavy is reliable, if it doesn't work you can hit them with it. Seriously though a fringe benefit of steel revolvers (and 1911's) is that if a threat is up close you can just whip the hell out of them with the big piece of metal in your hand. Whack somebody in the noggin with an S&W Model 19 and the fight's probably over. Not so much with the (otherwise much desirable) polymer wonders.

It is true a K frame will not stand up to endless shooting with heavy .357magnum rounds. Folks who for whatever reason want to shoot 500 rounds of heavy .357 mag ammo a month should get the bigger N frame or a Ruger GP-100. However most revolver owners do not shoot that much .357 mag ammo so the issue is in my mind negligible.

A normal citizen or hunter, even a real shooter who (like most) tends to practice with .38 ball and occasionally a bit of 357 mag to test duty as well as afield/ duty could use a Model 19 for decades without metal stress issues on the forcing cone/ backstrap. They are great guns, an excellent combination of history, beauty and function. On the other hand, while I do not own one, I would lean towards a Ruger GP-100 for a rifle and backpack run to the hills scenario.

Max Velocity's post on Rhodesian Cover Shooting (The Drake Method) is worth reading and keeping in mind. Basically in scenarios where a group is taking fire from unknown locations or fears/ believes enemy is sneaking up every shooter will put a round or 2 into each piece of cover they think someone could be behind within their field of fire. It is worth noting that ethically this technique must be reserved solely for isolated or otherwise free fire areas.

I truly believe we are, as civilians or soldiers, accountable morally if not legally (which we almost always are) responsible for every round we fire. That being said if I am in a small unit moving through the middle of the woods/ desert and we get into contact, maneuver or whatever, then (if it is part of their TTP's) the enemy starts with harassing fire or is going to try to close into our lines I'd put 2 into the bush and 1 on each side of the tree. At the point where 2 or more armed groups have been shooting at each other for awhile the shepherd boy has run off, the shaking bush is probably a bad guy. The Rhodesia Cover shoot is not the answer for every problem but it is a good technique to have in your head just in case.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Small Revolver Choices- SW Airweight .38?

We talked before about whether I should get a revolver or a little semi auto.

Anyway I decided to go with a little revolver. There were a lot of different considerations involved in this.

The Kel Tech 9mm is at least temporarily rejected. If one comes up at a deal and it is from a person I know (that will say if the gun sucks or not) maybe but for now I think not. There are a whole flock of new subcompact single stack 9mm's but I want to see how they fare and let some kinks get worked out.

There were a variety of options but I quickly narrowed it down to a Ruger SP 101 .357 mag or a Smith and Wesson .38/.357. Lots of other companies (Taurus, Charter Arms, etc all) make decent revolvers but I am looking for something that I'm not going to have issues with or want to replace in 2 or 3 years.

After some consideration the role I am looking to fill is a carry piece smaller than a Glock 19. This will give me some options and since I will be in Arizona through the summer that is important. I do think the steel framed models are probably more durable over the very long term. However since subcompact revolvers tend to be guns that get carried a lot and not have crazy round counts so to me the issue is negligible. Also this is another consideration in buying a quality revolver. My concern about the SP 101 is that despite being small it is heavy enough to be problematic for my intended use of summer or casual carry.  Also I tend to want to go lighter for a carry gun which makes the air weight smiths a good option.

[Eventually this little revolver will be paired with a stainless steel .357 or some variety. A Ruger GP 100 4" would be nice but a 3" SP 101 might just be the ticket.]

Alexander Wolfe of TEOTWAWKI Blog noted you do not get a lot from the .357 cartridge (vs the .38 special) in a snubby and there are probably shoot-ability issues in lighter guns. I would be inclined to go with a .357 mag and load .38's just to have the chamber capacity if it ever came up. So I got to looking. Around here SW stainless .357 mag's of the small variety are semi rare and in the air weight flavor they might as well be made of unobtainable and have diamonds for night sights. Nice guns but way more coin than I want to spend.

Anyway the combination of my preferences, budget and availability makes me think a Smith and Wesson Airweight .38 special as the best available option. Thoughts?





Sunday, January 13, 2013

What Did You Do To Prepare This Week?

Things were pretty crazy here getting used to having the new little one at home. All is well with child #2 but it is a lot to adjust to.  Still managed to get a few things done.

I sold a revolver to free up some cash and make room for a new gun. Leaning pretty hard towards a smaller stainless .357 magnum but we will see if something cool pops up. Then again I am going to re look what is on the gun/ defensive accessory list and maybe just wipe it out.

Spent some time more with the Solo Stove and think I've pretty much figured it out. Just got to fiddling with the Solo Pot 900. Pretty psyched about that combo.

This weekend a lot of time went into working on my systems. The EDC bag was totally stripped down. After taking all preparedness stuff out of it I reinserted a personal survival kit, one of those heavier space blankets, a cheapo first aid kit and a pouch for a steel water bottle. Need to pick up a bottle of water purification tablets to go in there and it will be good to go.Will probably talk about it this week.

The rest of the stuff plus a bit more went into a commercial hiking style backpack. I added a few more things and it is shaping into a pretty decent heavy get home bag/ bug out bag. Need to go over it again and plug a few small holes then things should be good to go. We will talk more about this once I finish the last little bit.

Coming up next week I am going to order a few odds and ends. Also plan to keep working my systems and talk about the stuff in my EDC bag. Speaking of EDC bags Teotwawki Blog is doing a series on them which should be interesting. May change mine a little bit based on stuff that comes up there. Also Wifey said I should go shooting so that will probably happen early this week.

What did you do to prepare this week?

A few things to share just to clear out some tabs:

Teotwawki Blog noted that CDNN investments has (had anyway) PTR-91's at sane prices.

They also linked to an excellent site Congress.org that makes it super easy to write all of your federal or state representatives in one shot (instead of looking them up and wading through their websites). So click on this link and tell them what you think about the current hysteria and the Second Amendment in general. If you are not sure what to say Ruger put together an excellent blanket letter. Send it to your federal and state reps today. I did and it took like 5 minutes.

Apparently 100k people joined the NRA in the last 18 days. I was one of those. If you are not a member join the NRA today. They are not as extreme (in a good way) as GOA but they actually have clout. Join GOA also if it makes you happy.

$19 30 rd AR mags IN STOCK. I can't vouch for this company or the mags but if you need AR mags at this stage in the game beggars cannot be choosers.




Thursday, January 10, 2013

Revolver or Pistol? Kel Tech PF 9?

Over the past couple years I have been generally selling guns. Part of it is getting rid of .40SW and .45acp to simplify my logistics. The other part is to get to the right place. Not necessarily MORE guns but THE RIGHT guns.  I built a nice AR named Project AR Upgrade not very long ago.

 I sold a full sized .357 magnum today. A fine gun but  I have shot it like 5 times in almost 10 years. Those were the times I took EVERYTHING out to shoot. Anyway it is down the river and the gun fund is up $400.

After doing some looking the Ruger GP 100 4" that will eventually replace the old guy as my big wheel gun costs more that the gun budget currently has. Also more to the point I don't see that gun getting much use in the near future. Maybe down the road when the kids are older and I am out in the woods more but that is awhile off.

That leaves me with 2 niches that could be filled. A snubby revolver or a compact single stack 9mm. A stainless snubby .357 seems like a decent option. I would either get a Ruger or a Smith. Might have to add some more cash to the deal but not a ton. The option of a single stack 9mm appeals to me a lot as it would fill a solid role as a carry gun slightly smaller than a Glock 19.

The Kel Tech PF 9 comes up as a very affordable option that is the right size for what I want. Nutnfancy seems to really like them. I have however heard some issues but am unsure how much of that are armchair forum commando's. I don't care about accuracy or trigger pull much, it is a little carry gun. Also I am not too concerned about being able to put a gazillion rounds through it as that's not the niche for this gun. However reliability/ feeding does concern me.

So questions:

1) Should I get a small stainless .357mag or a small single stack 9mm?

There is the consideration that I will probably need to spend more like $450 to get a .357 like I'm looking for while for the cash I have could buy a Kel Tech PF 9, some spare mags, a holster and a couple hundred rounds of ammo.

2) What have been your personal experiences with the Kel Tech PF 9, good, bad or even ugly?


Input is appreciated




Friday, October 5, 2012

Odds N Ends: Interwebz, Ammo and Big Fun

I got internet set up today at the new place which is nice. Generally trying to get settled in here. As I am running advon for the family I find myself doing a lot of stuff that has previously been Wifey's job. That means it is new to me so there has been some wasted efforts. Oh well.

Did the ammo inventories today. Some interesting stuff for sure. We are pretty short on 30-30 at just 320 rounds and .357 magnum at 150. The 30-30 is more pressing. The big wheel gun could get fed .38 special if needed we have plenty of that. Granted I really don't NEED the 30-30 ammo so much but can't see a reason not to have a reasonable amount of ammo for a rifle I really like. Would like to be at 500 rounds for both calibers.

On the bright side we have more 7.62x39 than I thought. Plenty of .30.06 (especially since the Garand is marked for sale), .38 special, and 9mm. The .223 situation is OK though I would like to set back 2 more cases. Old .22 long isn't doing bad but could use about three thousand more rounds. Over the next year or so I suspect  these deficiencies will get fixes unless the world ends. Regardless I am not too worried. We have enough ammo that it is not likely to be a pressing problem.

Most of the ammo is nicely organized now. Boxes are generally 1 caliber (a few orphan cases are inevitable) and are clearly marked with caliber and quantity of contents. I do plan to try and pick up a few more ammo cans to get everything packed away right instead of putting the rest in a giant 120mm mortar can. Will try and do that tomorrow.

The 'go cans' got packed at least with their tentative contents. Going to mull it a bit then talk it with you all tomorrow.

Anyway that is what I have been up to today.




Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Range Report- 25 September

Got some range time today which was pretty awesome. I have forgotten what a great stress reliever shooting is. The revolvers were fun as always. Decided to hold onto the one that I was looking at selling. It is a sweet shooter and would not bring a ton of money on resale. Forgot to bring the Browning Buckmark which was a bit of a bummer.

I have been working on being more intentional than I have in the past when it comes to shooting. Either starting from the low ready or holster and shooting controlled pairs at multiple targets. Reloads were often used. If I wasn't sold before the modern isosceles is definitely the ticket. The Glock 19 shot like a champ. There is a reason lots of really smart folks use them.

Practicing with the gear I carry with has been interesting. Like the gun, belt and leather. However my spare mag storage needs to be addressed. I have been tossing a spare mag in my off hand cargo pocket which sucks a lot for the reload. Might as well stop to get a drink of water, use the bathroom and wash my hands during a speed reload. The back pocket is better (at least it won't get turned around) but not by much. Granted carrying a 15 shot pistol a reload is unlikely but I like having one around. I've been meaning to get a spare mag pouch and start using it for CC but this really beats that point in.

All in all I was pretty happy with things especially considering pistol range time has been pretty light for a pretty long time. A pair of good ear muffs would make things a bit more pleasant and a shot timer would help me get serious about training.

The old 30-30 needed some love. It is one of those models that came with the infernal cross bolt safety. Hating said safety I promptly removed it. That left the rifle functioning how it should but with noticeable and unpleasant holes in the sides of the receiver.  Did not want the safety back but didn't want the holes either. the whole thing bothered me so it got stashed away in the safe. Recently I used some google fu to see if other people have had this same problem.

Stumbled into this article by a fellow who had the same problem. For less than a buck at the hardware store I got 2 1/4 in nylon hole inserts and gave it a shot. The gun looks like it should, well at least to a quick glance which is good enough for me. I had considered selling the gun and getting an older one (a 16" 30-30 trapper would be great but it is pretty low on the list) without the safety which is an infernal nod to our overly legalistic society but this solved the problem.

Look it is probably a bad idea to do any at home gunsmithing, let alone messing with safety features. As such I cannot recommend it to anybody and in fact suggest not doing it. As an adult with a decent understanding of firearm safety and the safe handling of this weapon I made a choice that may not be right for others.

Any day shooting is a good day. Most things went really well and there is some stuff to work on.  Planning to do some research and start incorporating dry fire practice into the mix. Hopefully there will be a lot more shooting happening (shooting for monthly as a goal) so this will be a more frequent feature.

Get out there and train!




Thursday, July 12, 2012

A Discussion of Revolvers

The last time revolvers were mentioned here things got about as unpleasant as they have in a long time. I had planned to write this post in the days following that one but didn't feel like dealing with any drama. The funny and ironic thing about this is that I like revolvers. In fact we have more .38/.357 revolvers than any other single type of gun.

Revolvers are well what they are. Very arguably the revolver market has been static for a long time. Aside from fluff and finishes there hasn't been anything new that was meaningful (and caught on) for a long time. Like decades. Typically revolvers hold 5-7 rounds and have barrels between 2 and 6 inches. There are numerous calibers but for defensive purposes zeroing in on .38/.357 and briefely touching .44 mag is probably sufficient.

The two biggest disadvantages revolvers have are that they do not hold a lot of bullets and are slow to reload. Unfortunately the second issue seriously compounds the first. As to their advantages wheel guns are unbiquous, easy to use, affordable and more tolerant of varied ammunition than auto's. The reason I say revolvers are easier to use is that the failure drill is to pull the trigger again. If the gun doesn't shoot a second time it is empty (either you shot it that way or forgot to load it) or broken beyond immediate repair. Now in fairness revolvers can and do break and auto's are typically easier to repair.

Comparing revolvers to auto's in terms of a defensive tool is sort of pointless. Auto's hold considerably more ammunition and reload faster. That being said revolver folks will argue some points they believe make the wheel gun superior. I don't feel like arguing but must observe that you don't see many folks who carry a gun for a living with wheel guns these days.

Arguing that a revolver is equal to or better than an automatic is the wrong argument anyway. The real question is if revolvers are good enough to defend ones self with. For goodness sake don't say that revolvers were good enough for years and use that as your sole point. Swords were good enough for years too but you don't see many of them these days with good reason. As to this more important question I suppose the answer is probably. Then again you are probably fine without a gun anyway.

The answer to this question is probably. You would have to be in the more unlikely end of the already unlikely violent conflict spectrum for the difference between an auto and a wheel gun to matter. If that happened and you had a wheel gun, well that would be bad but is statistically unlikely.

If your primary concern is a single goblin with an edged or blunt weapon, or maybe a gun, attacking you.

As to snubbies in particular as the snubby didn't seem to need it's own post. The same issues above both good and bad are present with snubbies except they have the additional disadvantage that they are a very difficult gun to shoot. For most folks they are probably good to across the room distances. Note that I did not say they are mechanically inaccurate but that most folks can't hit squat with them. This is more of an issue because they don't hold a lot of bullets, most hold 5. A tech 9 is not accurate but they hold a lot of bullets so, if you do not care about collateral damage, the odds of getting a hit are decent.

[If anybody has a bunch of money to take snubby .38's to a bunch of ranges with free amo for people to shoot and keep track of the ammo it would be interesting. I suspect few people would do well past about 10 meters and almost none would hit squat at 20. Considering these are ideal conditions and that stress and movement deteriorate accuracy considerably it could easily mean not hitting squat. ]

To touch briefly on caliber .38 special is perfectly adequate and .357 magnum is an oldie but a goodie. Bigger guns like .44's have power to spare though they are typically big enough be difficult to conceal without a vest (which screams gun unless you have a big camera around your neck) or coat and in terms of defensive use outside of the isolated hinterboonies fall in the 'left in the truck' category.

One of the biggest things working against the snubby is that concealable semi automatic pistols have come a long way in the last 20 years. Between the slightly larger than snubby slew of quality compact pistols from Glock, S&W, Springfield, HK and pretty much every other major manufacturer manufacturer and the new much smaller than snubby .380's like the KelTech, and all it's knock offs as well as the S&W Bodyguard the nitche of the snubby could be questioned. One might argue it is literally surrounded by better options. They do however have one unique advantage. You can load the same caliber of ammo in a snubby .38/.357 for carry and a big .357 for house and field use. For somebody who really wants to keep it simple in terms of logistics that is a benefit.

Personally I have a snubby .38 (and the wife has another which is a whole different discussion). This gun was purchased when I realized the full sized handguns I owned weren't getting carried much. I could slip it into an IWB holster and it vanished under a loose shirt. This gun got shelved for carry when I bought a Glock 19. I laid the snubby on top of the Glock 19 and while the snubby was smaller it was just by a tiny bit. The .38 was wider though the bigger grip (due to the mag) of the Glock printed a little bit more. I decided very quickly that having 3x more bullets in a much easier to shoot package was worth a tiny bit of printing.

While it is unlikely that the difference between a snubby .38 and a Glock 19 will ever matter for me I would rather be safe then sorry. It isn't much more gun to carry for the huge difference in capabilities. Within reason there is always a trade off between more or less gun so finding your own happy spot is important. A Glock 19 is something I will carry regularly.

There is still a soft spot in my heart for revolvers. I like collecting and shooting them. For practical use I especially like them for the great outdoors. A gun that you can affordably plink with as well as kill mountain lions, black bear and snakes is a nice thing to have. Also they are cheap. Unless you are married to the newest tacticool (kinda ironic for wheelguns anyway) models it is easy to get good guns priced in the mid 300's (or was a 3 years back anyway). Revolvers are nice for a gun to stash here or there because of their affordable price. I can't afford to have a Glock back in the PNW, another stashed at a 'campsite' and a third someplace else in addition to the guns I normally use. For the price of a new AR or many models of semi automatic pistol I could do this with good used .38/.357 revolvers.

Anyway those are my thoughts on that. Flame on.

Edited to include: Commander Zero's post on Revolvers at Cheaper than Dirt is also worth reading.







Wednesday, May 16, 2012

quote of the day

"The definition of an optimist is a guy with a speed strip and a snubby."
-James Yeager

I got to thinking about this one. I don't disagree with it but would like to add a caveat. I would say that a person who carries a speed strip and a snubby is an optimist in a group full of people who carry guns. Then again a guy who carries a compact handgun is arguably more optimistic than one who carries a full service sized piece as most folks shoot bigger handguns better, packing 1 mag is more optimistic than 2, we could go deeper into this rabbit hole but why.

A handgun you will carry is more useful than one which will live in a safe, nightstand or glove box. Mr Snubby .38 is far more prepared for a violent encounter than somebody who keeps a bigger gun in a glove box, nightstand or safe.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

.223 vs 12 Guage and Pistol Penetration On Inside Walls

Read this. Turns out that maybe you are better off with a rifle in terms of penetration in addition to round capacity and other factors. The kind of heavy shot that actually stops people (not to rehash another myth but at more than a few feet birdshot is for birds) blows through typical residential inner walls. I wish they had brought something in 7.62x39 along too.  Edited a few minutes afterwords to include. Turns out somebody did test 7.62x39 Wolf FMJ's. I suspect 7.62x39 JHP or SP ammo would have more managed penetration.

Food for thought.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

When Was The Last Time You Tried To Justify A Toy For Preparedness?

I think sometimes we can sometimes let this get the better of us. We can always find a way to justify, if just to yourself, that toy we really want under the guise of a legitimate preparedness need. I remember a guy who had multiple motorcycles "for SHTF transportation". In reality he just liked motorcycles. Maybe for some other guy it is a 2k rifle with a 2k optic or a $500 fishing rod. Probably the biggest single area this happens is firearms. Heck probably 10% of the "survivalists" out there are just gun nuts with a case of MRE's anyway. Most of us are guys and we like guns. For me I can't pin down any single incident. However there is one thing I have been holding off on because I like my toys.

I like guns and have a collection that some people would consider large. It has some depth and also good breadth. Some guns fall more into the collection while others are core defensive weapons.  If I was making a ruthless preparedness move I would greatly streamline my collection. Aside from an heirloom or two I would sell off a bunch of stuff and have just core weapons. Instead of a meandering collection of handguns I would own a pair of stainless .357 magnums,  a .22 and a few Glock 9mm's. For rifles I would have AR's, AK's and at some point a scoped .308. For shotguns I would have just Remington 870's. Toss in a Ruger 10/22 and I would be done. I would have a collection of equitable size but lean and mean.

While I am passively planning (willing to sell but not very actively seeking a buyer) a sale or maybe two in general my plan is to hold what I have. Over time I will improve the ratio of core to collection not by getting rid of the collection but by getting more core. I probably try sometimes to justify the collection of toys. Though it might be convenient to have a weapon with a corresponding store of ammo in almost every common caliber (no .308 yet) more likely it is a  poor allocation of my limited resources.

When Was The Last Time You Tried To Justify A Toy For Preparedness?

Monday, July 20, 2009

quote of the day

"Unless you live in Big Bear country, the .357 revolver is probably the most versatile handgun for an outdoorsman."
-Rio Arriba

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