AR

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I got accused the other day of not liking AR platform rifles.  It’s not that I don’t like them, it’s that I don’t care.  I’ve shot em for work and for play and I just don’t really care about em anymore, unless I can help someone make an informed choice about getting one that works for them up and running.  Since I got called out I thought I’d bang out my thoughts on the subject.  

It’s been accepted that the AR family of rifles is here to stay.  

I’ve got no issues with them. 

The FN built rifles that I was issued while I was an 11B worked like sewing machines, other than the one I had in Korea which needed a mag shot through it first to run that well.  

I have a problem with all the crap that people hang off of them.  

I’m beginning to think, that like John Browning, Gene Stoner was right to start with and all the bullshit that people add to his design makes it less useful and reliable.

I like 20” barrels.  

I like A1 length buttstocks. 

I like the A1 rear sight better than the A2 if the rifle is going to have a carry handle.  

If the rifle is going to have a rail I like rear sights that do not fold, spindle, or mutilate.  

In fact, I don’t like, nor will I have,  anything adjustable on the rifle. 

Collapsable stocks are not for me.  

Folding front or rear sights are made out of fail regardless of who makes them.  

Stuff that moves has a very nasty habit of moving when you don’t want it too.

I’d zero the rifle about an inch or so high at 100 giving me the ability to shoot to reasonable engagement ranges without having to hold over, under, or off.  

I’d ditch the forward assist.  

I don’t think it helps very much, and it can hurt.  

Besides, slick slides look better anyway.  

I think a white light can be damn handy to have on a rifle.  

I think an optic is an excellent piece of kit. 

I’m not sure about the rails.  

I understand them, but I don’t see any reason to hang 6 pounds of shit off of a 6 pound rifle to make it better.  

If I went with a light I’d put a G2 Surefire in a Weaver scope ring on the right hand side of the handguard.  

The white light, for me, is an on or off thing.  

I don’t need modes or switches or flashing or any of that other crap.  

As for a VFG or an AFG, I think they can both have their place, but I no longer kick doors or carry the rifle for work. 

I’ll likely never engage the enemy on the back forty. I’ll likely never have to assault the building again. 

I’m not sure how much good they would do me.  

Plain old GI magazines with the green followers have yet to fail me. 

I never used anything else while employed by Uncle Sam.  

I’ve also never really seen the need to switch as a civilian.  

Though if pressed I’d go with the 20 round P-Mags, they’d have all the capacity that I need and make it a touch easier to shoot from prone.  

Twist rate isn’t something I’d really worry too much about in a GP rifle.  

Twist it the same as what Uncle Sam runs and shoot about the same weight ammo, making the switch to soft-points.

As for optics I’d have an ACOG if I could get one the TA-51 to be exact. 

If not that the EOtech and Aimpoints I’ve used both work fine.  

I like doughnut of death better as a reticle but I think the Aimpoint is a simpler and more robust design.

Wouldn’t have one chambered in something other than .223/5.56.  The other stuff is boutique at best and actively silly at worst.

The US Military isn’t switching to a new caliber or rifle unless or until they have a new magazine. 

The SCAR, MASADA, ACR XCR and all the rest are neat but not going anywhere.

Neither is piston driven.  

That’s what I think.  It’s worth what you paid for it.  

 

5 on the 5

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This meme went around a while back.  I should have written this down then.  Well, I kinda did, then I got to thinking about it.  Picking five dream guns was a little harder than I first thought it would be, especially as I work with guns everyday and have off and on for the better part of my working life.   After careful consideration I did come up with five though.  Presented below in no particular order.

 

FN M1918 BAR Model D

The high point and the most refined design of the Browning Automatic Rifle.  I’d have to have it chambered in the correct .30-06.  It’s big, heavy, and mostly impractical but it’s the closest thing to FA that I’d care to have.  

 

Remington Arms Company Model 1875

In my opinion the superior arm to the Colt 1973, but it never gained the commercial success as Colt had a two year head start.  I think it’s the best looking revolver ever produced and the grip frame feels far more comfortable to be than the 1873 type.  Colt’s blackpowder pistol’s grip frames were better than the 1873 too.  This one I’d like to have a pair of in .44-40. (They would go nice with a saddle ring in the same caliber.)  

 

Winchester Repeating Arms Model of 1895 

I’d have to have the musket model that was manufactured for the Russian Army.  That puts it in 7.62x54r.  While I have no issues with that, I’d really like to have one in .30-06 made in that configuration.  Just a gun that I admire the look of.

 

Colt Model 1903 Pocket Hammerless .32 ACP

This slick little Colt would make a phenomenal carry pistol with properly loaded .32 ammo and a couple of custom touches.  First I’d dovetail in a set of usable sights, I believe that the Novak’s that a made to fit the Kahr models would be the right size, and a fantastic improvement over the stock sights.  A little TIG welding would add a nice little pad on the safety making is slightly easier to use.  I think I’d prefer a Type I or V for this conversion.  It would be even better if these little pistols were put back into production.  

 

Stevens Walnut Hill Model Rifle

This is another that I think I’d have to have as a custom.  I’d like to set one of these actions up as a .25-20 W.C.F. I have a fondness for the cartridge and the same fondness for single shots.  This could pretty easily be the best of both worlds.  The picture shows a representative sample but the sky would be the limit for how that customization could be done.  I think I’d have at least a 24” barrel maybe 26 and make it a fairly full profile, with a solid hunting type stock on it. The addition of really good peep sights if not tangent sights would complete the rifle, but frankly a .25-20 just like the picture would suit me fine.  

Baseball, it is said, is only a game. True. And the Grand Canyon is only a hole in Arizona. Not all holes, or games, are created equal. -George Will-

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It’s no real secret that I’m a baseball fan.  I’m not shy about advocating for the game or talking about it.  A couple of days ago I was talking with the esteemed gentleman from Massachusetts about it as he’s just started coaching his son’s little league team.   I came to a conclusion that I hand’t reached before during that conversation.  I finally figured out why I like baseball.  

It’s a team sport.  Twenty-Five man roster.  Nine men on field at a time playing defense. One man in the batter’s box offense centers on him though baserunners play a part.

One man has the ball and in that moment only individual skills matter.  When that moment is over and the ball is in flight either between fielders or off the bat the game is back to being about team.   

Ted Williams, the best right handed hitter ever, said, “Baseball is the only field of endeavor where a man can succeed three times out of ten and be considered a good performer.”  He was totally correct.  Doesn’t matter at all how impressive an individuals stats are, there is far more failure than success in the game of baseball, and the team can’t be successful without a full team effort.

That’s why I like the game so much, a player can be all about individual achievement but cannot neglect his role in the team no matter how he triumphs or falters.  That lesson carries over to relationships with family, friends, and coworkers.  Striving for individual success cannot overshadow the contributions made for the team as those individual successes only serve to improve the whole.  

The game teaches mindset too, but that can be for another post.  

 

Now there’s three things you can do in a baseball game: You can win or you can lose or it can rain.  -Casey Stengel-

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