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Saturday, August 31, 2013


The mountains. Up for a family reunion tomorrow. Big honking flea market in hillsville va means rooms are scarce. I pulled my hole card. Sparta NC. Weather is nice plus I get to run the new ride on some interesting roads between here and Fries VA tomorrow!

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Friday, August 30, 2013

Dear Colt Manufacturing.

There is one thing I will not do to a 1911. It is replacing the ejector. I am a competent armorer but I am no gunsmith. 

So today I get a package from here:

The famous Blue Dome. A storied company and a rich heritage that is interwoven into the making of this country. 

Guess what. Inside was this:

A generic (to most) Combat Commander. Made back during the infamous UAW strike in the mid 80's. To me it is priceless for where it has been and was always there.  I don't trust "gunsmiths" around here and if it was not such a storied handgun I would have attempted the repair.

So here is my problem. As Larry Correia states on his blog about H&K customer service: "Because you suck. And we hate you". This seems to be the mantra at Colt now. They had the 1911 since 5/29. They sent a letter via USPS on 7/1 for cost of repair. How quaint. Hey CMC! Ever heard about Email?!? 

Payment for repair was made the next day. Now finally the pistol is back. Colt, S&W just put out a recall on one of it's top selling Pistols last week. They state if you send it back it will be returned in five to seven days. I paid for the shipping back to you. Insured and all of that it came to 100 bucks and some change. 

Really Colt! I love your products but as I peruse the shelf's of oh, house of geese and anywhere else, I fear you have given up on the consumer market.

A profound statement from my friend after he did this

So, when the old dudes die will anyone remember Colt? 

I have to say that is an excellent question.  

Colt, I cannot pay 600 bucks for a .380 Mustang you made in the 80's. I can get a Ruger LCP for 250 less. Either get out of the consumer market or go away.The current state of Colt saddens me.

Dear Pelican Case

Pick and pluck uh my @$$!

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Heavy metal!

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Thursday, August 29, 2013

I Get to Meet a Friend!

I have never met! Only in the Blogosphere would that statement make any sense. Next month I'm getting probulated by TSA for a worthy cause. I'm going to see Bill in Vinton, IA for some NRA Instructor Development. I'll let him tell you about it here

I look forward to it and quite frankly getting the hell out of Dodge for a bit. September is filling up with shooty goodness with Murphy's Law charity Blogshoot in two weeks, my own Basic Pistol and CCH classes after that and then three days in IA. 

Woo-Hoo! Just hope I'm not "That Guy" in class =) 

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Anybody have a recommendation?

For a Pelican case for an M&P 9mm VTAC? It seems I need to fly to Iowa soon!

Monday, August 26, 2013


My good friend and walking encyclopedia on things that go "BOOM" is hosting his third annual Charity fundraiser blog shoot in Charles Town WV on September the 14th. I have attended all of them and this one promises to be the best! Our own range for the day! How awesome is that?!?!

The first one in 2011 has this AAR from me here. The second here

If you like guns and meeting really fantastic people raising money for a good cause then you have no excuse for coming!

I'm raising the bar here. It is a seven or so hour drive for me and I will bring some interesting hardware and ammo for ya to shoot. 

I hope to see you there! Email me for additional information. 

Friday, August 23, 2013

The Summer of My Discontent Continues!

However to borrow a line from a song: "You're in the arms of the Angel, may you find some comfort here."

I just might find a "beautiful release" tomorrow as I wander north to Mr. and Mrs. Curmudgeon's home. Perhaps we can take these to the range. 

Song is here. 

Yeah, left wing nut job, but she can run a piano! 

The song? Well some time ago someone that I knew then felt compelled to send it to me. On dial up Interwebz no less! Karyn, you are more insightful to me now than you were 10 years ago. I hope you are well.  

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Behold Mother Nature's Work

A pile of industrial controls one second, a pile of junk the next! Lightning is a formidable opponent.

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We Must Protect our Phoney Baloney Jobs!

Well I just might have for a little while. I've been home a little over two hours after showing up at work at 0800. It's 0330. 

PLC running half the plant vented its magic smoke around 1800 hrs. Took the UPS with it. Knocked associated downstream comms to other processors with it just for fun. 

Sigh... I can never go to sleep after such fun for a while. Sorry for the late night interruption! 


Monday, August 19, 2013

New Looks Like Old!

So after about 500 rounds through the Colt 1911 Model M45 we field strip it. A couple of things stand out. For the accuracy the USMC required I was expecting a barrel bushing wrench with it. No, it appears to be a standard bushing. Second, dual recoil springs on a standard recoil spring guide rod! Other than that, it all looks the same except for the amazing Cerakoat coating on the thing. 

God bless John Moses Browning! 


Saturday, August 17, 2013

I Hope!

I hope there is a special level of hell for people that sell used .357 Magnum snubbys to little old ladies. Had one today in Basic Pistol class of each. NOT the first gun to learn on! Sigh... Off tomorrow to see what awaits on the CCH class.

Friday, August 16, 2013

Two is One, One is None!

It is an old saying. I will modify it to: "Two are none if not cared for". True these M&P's can take a boat load of abuse and still run. Just because they can does not mean I no longer have to perform routine maintenance though! 

Yes they are pretty much the same, but I think you can figure out which one gets the lions share of use!

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

The Stupid. Part Two!

So yesterday I get a Property Tax Bill from Union County. Looks like this:

The previous form and all of that was for the 1971 Mustang, not the 1966. This is a property tax bill for it. REALLY?!?! So I call the mentioned Sr. Property Tax whatever and guess what. Have to leave a message. They call back. The first voice mail says they got my paperwork and to disregard the bill. HELLO! We are talking about two different Autos here! Shortly after that she finds her error and leaves another message. I seem to have never returned the form for the 1966. I tell her I never got one and all of this is not legal under NC General Statutes. Could she please explain why I have to fill out the County form? *Crickets, crickets*. Finally she has decided she is done talking to me and says she will send a form out for the 1966. I ask where she got the value for it and she said she valued it as a condition 4 and that is what the computer said. As predicted! Lady, I assure you this car on the grading scale is at least a 2 pushing a 1.


Sunday, August 11, 2013

Sigh... .gov is .gov everywhere!

So here at stately manor we receive a document from the Tax assesor. Here it is in all of its glory:

First, you addresed the envelope to me and yet refer to me on this letter as "Customer"?!?!? No, I'm not a customer, just someone that must meet your convoluted demands for more paper work to maintain a lower tax rate on a 42 year old car! If I do not, you will run some random number generator and  decide what the car is worth and tax me on that amount.

Second, what the hell is a "Personal Property Sr. Specialist"? I would LOVE to see the job description for that! 

Third, I'm not a "Past Owner" or "New Owner". I'm a CURRENT owner! 

I do love the fact that the form I am supposed to fill out asks for the VIN number AND A COPY OF THE TITLE! Earth to .gov. The VIN is on the title! Second, I am to report the current odometer reading. Gee, you want the original odometer reading that is sitting on a shelf in the garage or the one I put in the car back in 1984? LOL! I proudly reported a mileage of 90K and some change. Throw another 200K on top of that and you might be getting close. 



Saturday, August 10, 2013

An Old Friend and A New One.

So I'm carrying a Colt Defender for the Summer. The Pistol requires a spare magazine for carry IMHO and I have contacted Michael over at the The Holster Site for a custom rig that will hold a spare mag and a Surefire Defender E2D flashlight. 

In the meantime I am honored to whip this out. 


It was issued to a friend, a coworker back in the late eighties. He is no longer with us. A Gentleman Farmer and a really wonderful Father, Grandfather, and coworker. He did not say much about this magazine holder, he just gave it to me.  He was old enough to have been in the jungle. I wish he would have told me about this piece of leather.

So for tomorrow I will represent old school in memory of him.

Friday, August 9, 2013

The "M" Stands for Marketing!

So last weekend I had two students that wanted to get all up into some .380 mouse guns. They are gearing up for my concealed carry class and took my Basic Pistol class the previous month. They also requested if possible to shoot a Springfield XD in 9mm. My good friend has a XD-M and let me borrow it. I of course had to clean it though! 

My students liked the Colt Mustang the best for the trigger but were freaked out on the whole "carry locked and cocked" issue. They settled on the S&W Bodyguard and hey, I told them the difference between SA and DA so I did not belabor the issue. The fact that the Bodyguard has a horrid trigger to me does not matter as an instructor (it takes a LONG time to get this in your head). You present and they decide. If they are comfortable with it, can shoot it, I'm a happy guy! 

So we get to this:


I have shot them before and although this is a perfectly serviceable Handgun, I was again left with a solid "Meh" feeling. Before any SA people get bent, yeah, OK, according to SA this is different than the plain XD in these areas:

  1. Adjustable backstrap
  2. Match-grade barrel
  3. No trigger pull required for takedown
  4. Trigger supposedly a little better than the XD
  5. More aggressive grip texture for better grip
  6. Grip design change to ease accessibility of mag release
  7. More aggressive slide serrations for better grip
  8. More capacity than standard XD
  9. Triple-position Picatinney rail for more accessory adjustment options

Know what? Don't care. To me the M stands for marketing or more money.

Disclaimer: I DO own a Springfield, it says "U.S. Rifle" on it though =) 

Thursday, August 8, 2013

UPDATE! Dear Union County Tax Assessor,

You know that I have had Antique Auto License plates on the 1971 and 1966 Mustangs issued by NCDMV for years. NOW you want a copy of the titles, an application, and a CURRENT PICTURE of the Mustangs to maintain the reduced tax rate?!?!? How the hell will you know its a current picture? What difference does it make? I might just send a copy of a magazine ad for the '71 and see if anyone notices.

What the frack happened to all of this data integration between you and NCDMV? The 1971 has been CONTINUOUSLY registered since my Father bought it in January of 1972. Sheesh! There is corporate stupid then there is .gov stupid. An order of magnitude above it seems. Anyone know where I can find the gal in the Bikini? 

I have two "current pictures" below. Since the powers that be did not specify what picture they wanted, I'm thinking one of the two past the ad below. What say you?
Dear Union County Tax Assessor, You know that I have had Antique Auto License plates on the 1971 and 1966 Mustangs issued by NCDMV for years. NOW you want a copy of the titles, an application, and a CURRENT PICTURE of the Mustangs to maintain the reduced tax rate?!?!? How the hell will you know its a current picture? What difference does it make? I might just send a copy of a magazine ad for the '71 and see if anyone notices. 

What the frack happened to all of this data integration between you and NCDMV? The 1971 has been CONTINUOUSLY registered since my Father bought it in January of 1972. Sheesh! There is corporate stupid then there is .gov stupid. An order of magnitude above it seems.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Blogger Issues!

It seems that many have commented via email that they cannot post comments here. I have no idea why, but I am not blocking them. Maybe the NSA is Hoovering them before they get here!

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Colt M45

My friend running the Colt M45 on a half size steel IDPA target at 25 yards. First time he shot it! It does have an easy button on it!

Saturday, August 3, 2013

A Fellow Blogger Needs Help

Via the talented wordsmith Brigid I have been informed that one of our own, Don over at Tin Can Assassin has been admitted to the hospital with heart issues. I am sure that his wife and daughter would appreciate your thoughts and prayers. Updates as they become availible.  

Friday, August 2, 2013

Any Generator People Here?

Finally I get to following up on this. The manual transfer switch is installed! 

So although I can do the math and install the thing, I leave it to my friends with decades of experience. I could do it, but they make it look good! I'm not an electrician, nor did I stay at a Holiday Express the previous night. The first thing to go was a load management thing. I never agreed to it and it was here when I got here. Gone. I prefer my electrons to NOT be interrupted thanks! 

So it goes:

Wish I could show you the sweep on this PVC. They did it by sight on an electric heater. No joints or glue on this! 

On the other side of the file cabinet here is the exit to the rear of the house. Looks like this on the exterior:

The game plan is to pull a portable genset to this socket and power essential stuff if needed. Pay no attention to the train wreck to the right! 

So, does anyone have any opinions on a portable 7KW generator? Generac, B&S, etc? I would appreciate any advice.  

Thursday, August 1, 2013