Old photos of Bullseye Brookie

These are from 2011, when Brookie was 13. Bottom rifle is her own custom built 6.8mm, the top is a custom 5.56mm Doublestar.


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What kind of bird was this?

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Know your weapon’s trajectory: new on AllOutdoor

I think this is one of my most informative articles.
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Less expensive shooting practice

Range time consists of three major expenses: range fees, travel time and ammunition. I shoot on friends’ farms, so the fees aren’t an issue. Ammunition, that I have. I’ve been a packrat a long time, and I no longer do much rapid fire. Travel time…that’s a problem. The nearest range available to me is a 55 minute drive away. The rest are further. Two hours on the road really add up.

Being able to practice in the back yard seemed ideal. So I’ve been looking at using air guns more…starting with a Daisy spring gun, later replaced with a Gamo 880 and augmented with Diana RWS34P. I also had a Crosman revolver of great accuracy which I lend to some friend and never got back. I replaced it with a newer, more expensive CO2 revolver but was not happy with its performance or feel.

So I started looking at various options, and ran into Crosman people at SHOT show range day. Shot a few pellets through pre-charged guns, liked how easy it was to hit targets compared to piston models. They agreed to provide me with some air guns to try out. Being a newbie to air guns, I’ve used up a lot of the time of their engineer who explained various technical details to me.

Today, I finally assembled the fancy Williams adjustable sight onto the pistol and took a few snapshots of it. And then the rain started, so no range time for me today.

I did a quick calculation of the economics of air gun shooting. Two 1250-pellet boxes add up to $58, and the 80 CO2 powerlets necessary to shoot them add another $36 (Wallmart prices). The pistol itself is $275 from Crosman and $260 from Amazon, shipping included. For comparison, a decent .22 pistol would cost about the same, and ammunition seems to be running about $250 for the same 2,500 rounds.

As a weapon, a .22 pistol is an obvious win. As a marksmanship training tool, the air gun looks to be economical — not just in terms of ammo but also in terms of range access — and rather accurate. Because air guns are not covered by NFA prohibition on barrel length, this pistol can be quickly augmented with a stock, making it much more useful for teaching new shooters. The notch rear sight can be either moved forward for a more conventional sight picture or left near the eye to make front sight focus easier for beginners.

Once I’ve had more time with this and other air guns, I will post my impressions in more detail.

PS: I just noticed a lot of complaints about canted front and rear sights. The front sight base is adjustable. The rear sight fits in the scope groove and has to be installed correctly or it shows the slight cant that buyers noticed. It took me about a minute to verify correct installation.



Posted in ammunition, pistol, training | Tagged , , , , , | 12 Comments

Marlin 795 LTR: new on AllOutdoor

Appleseed special: Liberty Training Rifle.

Posted in rifle, rkba, training | Tagged | 2 Comments

Holsters for unusual combinations of lights and sidearms

Quick, who makes mass-produced holsters for Bersa BP9CC and Viridian C5L combination? The sheet number of possible permutations of lights, lasers and pistols is so great, that custom makers like Leatherneck Tactical have a niche market.

Designed by an active service Marine Corps veteran, these holsters emphasize sturdiness and speed of access.

Examples shown here are the maker’s own carry pistols.

FNS40 is a large pistol, but it felt comfortable in this IWB holster.

LNT also make knife sheaths.

I like the quality and the designs that Jeff creates.



Posted in holster, knife, pistol | Tagged | 7 Comments

Pistol bayonet revived

Pistol bayonets date back to at least the 17th century and as recently as WW1. Useful or silly, they make great gag gift and definitely turn heads at the range.


And, of course, the zombie edition.


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6.5 Swedish already has a reputation for good accuracy

So I am curious, just how much more accurate would match loads in that caliber be? Would the limit of accuracy be dictated by the open sights? I am also curious why match ammo is lighter than the standard ball load.



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Wood grips for Czechpoint/Alfa Proj revolvers

Czechpoint revolvers come with functional but basic rubber grips. Some people prefer wood, and it turned out that they are available but not yet listed on the new version of Czechpoint USA web site. Here’s a preview of what you would be able to order shortly:

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Laser printer cartridge options

I use a Samsung ML1440 laser printer. It will need more toner soon. Options are 1)Samsung cartridge, about $150 2)Generic cartridge, about $60 and 3)re-fill, $20 and likely quite messy.

Am I risking anything by going with a generic cartridge?

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Prvi Partizan


From one of my current projects.

Posted in ammunition, holster, pistol, weapon | Tagged , , | 5 Comments

Carrying laser-equipped pistols

Lasers are useful, but most of them mount of rails and so require different holsters from the plain pistols. This M&P Shield with Lasermax CenterFire is a handy sidearm, but none of my old holsters would accommodate it.

Enter three options from DeSantis Leather:

1. Belt holster. The knife, by the way, is a chain drive design from Rat Worx.

2. Soft tuckable IWB that works for shield and similarly sized designs.

This one has the useful added feature of adjustable cant.

And 3. Superfly, a sticky pocket holster with a removable shape shield.

With the shield, it offers the greatest concealment, without a slimmer form.

For the compact pistol like Shield, I would think Superfly to be the best choice. If IWB or belt carry is used, might a well carry an M&P Compact or full size. Your call though.







Posted in holster, light/laser, pistol, self-defense, weapon | Tagged , | 6 Comments

You can always tell an AR15 shooter…

…by how high they place the heel of the stock.

.223 Ruger M77 left-hand with 3-9x Trijicon Accupoint. I had a chance to shoot this combination yesterday at 150 yards with only a small branch for support: it worked great. Appleseed really does build both skills and confidence.


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An observation about .410 defensive shotguns

Yesterday, I had a chance to play with Mossberg 500HD, a .410 pump designed for defense. We test-fired a whole bunch of ammo types at the IDTS 3D target and more at an old cooking pan, some rotten logs and cardboard boxes.

My observations on this .410 so far:

  • Low recoil does much to build confidence in the new shooters
  • Loading and extraction can be difficult due to the relatively great surface area of the casing: I’ve the best results with Russian steel case Barnaul shotshells, 2.5″ Brennekes slugs and 2.5″ Winchester PDX. Rio birdshot and S&B 3-pellet 00 buck loaded with difficulty and wouldn’t extract at all
  • 2.5″ shells give one more round in the tube without losing much effectiveness
  • Spreader choke and wad-less shotshells lead to excessive spread with birdshot loads at ranges beyond 5-6ft
  • Slugs were quite accurate: I was able to hit a 12″ hanging frying pan with 6 out of 6 Brenneke slugs from 40 yards, each projectile tearing an inch-wide hole in the metal
  • 3-pellet S&B load spread almost entirely vertically
  • PDX has pretty good patterning of the cylindrical bullets, but the pellets went off to one side
  • Barnaul #3 shot gave a surprisingly dense and consistent pattern
  • Terminal effect of Brenneke 2.5″ slugs was very impressive, including splitting some of the logs I used as targets

So the end result of my very informal test suggests using 2.5″ shells and solid projectiles. The slug weighs the same 109 grains as the 3″ variety but muzzle velocity is only 1500fps vs. 1750fps. For short ranges, the difference shouldn’t be all that significant. Hollow base .410 slugs which are used by most US ammo makers aren’t very solidly built, so their penetration is very limited.

To ensure reliable extraction with questionable ammunition, it’s best to pull on the forend during the recoil. It’s better yet to test the ammo beforehand and not load anything that doesn’t run smoothly.

Posted in ammunition, self-defense, shotgun, weapon | Tagged , , , | 20 Comments

A vintage Johnson

This 1941 Johnson rifle gives way to shoot 30-06 without undue recoil. It does require a steady stance to avoid short-stroking. Loading the rotary magazine with two stripper clips is interesting, a bit like Enfield but quicker thanks to rimless ammo. The rear sight is an aperture with range-adjusting slider like the later FN49. The balance is definitely better than M1 Garand, so even a lightly built 15 year old girl can hold it off-hand easily.

This particular rifle is for sale, for details ask Paul Stuhrenberg (bwana@bellsouth.net).




Posted in rifle | Tagged | 3 Comments

And this is how we know that TSA is pure security theater

TSA pretends that their screening catches weapons and bombs. We know from controlled experiments that they don’t catch bombs reliably. We also know from testimonials of friends that they let things like knives and live ammunition through their scanners because their staff can’t identify what they see correctly.

But it’s the TSA themselves that now supply proof that their efforts are arbitrary and likely unnecessary. They demand $75 for inclusion in a less intrusive checkpoint lane (“trusted traveler”), but also have a few random other travelers go through the same lane. While the less intrusive screening is appreciated, the practice of having random passengers screened the same way as “carefully pre-checked” passengers suggests that they aren’t too concerned about the difference between the two methods. One includes radiation treatment in pornoscanners, the other one doesn’t. It does appear that TSA is trying to get $75 per traveler plus a whole lot of additional personal information in exchange for not getting exposed to pointless attention of incompetent but intrusive blue-gloved checkers.

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UTS15 with EOTech holographic sight. Stoked with a mix of Rio 00 buck and slugs in a Comp-tac carrier on Minotaur belt. Backup pistol is a Glock 23 in a DragonLeather Flatjack holster.


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Capoeira at Peabody campus



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Various recent photos

In Charleston harbor

With parents at a park near Savannah on Hilton Head Island, SC

Nashville squirrel

Nashville squirrel at attention




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Bigger is more American

1963 Plymouth Valiant was considered a compact in its time, despite the 3.7L 6-cylinder engine.

Similarly, BAZ45 is a compact gas-operated pistol-caliber carbine despite the nice, fat 45ACP caliber. Feeding off slightly modified M3 Grease Gun magazines, it has the distinction of roughly .22LR level of recoil despite launching more than five times as much metal at similar velocity though the 10-inch barrel. 5.5″ flash hider ensures no visible muzzle flash.



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