Sunday, December 29, 2013

Cast Bullets and Enfields

A Savage No.4 Mk I, being fed 190 grain cast bullets, with gas checks and a diameter of .314. Powder charge was 30.9 grains of Winchester 760. At 100 yards, with five shot groups I had a frequent pattern of 3 round inside 3 inches, and two round within 3 inches, with a gap of about 6-8 inches between the two. I have a feeling I'll need to look at the bedding on this rifle. Perhaps a touch of Brownell's Acraglas.......

Saturday, December 21, 2013

Swedish Saturday

Good day to head to the range with a Swedish M96 rifle built in 1900, last fired in the '90s, with ammunition assembled from components purchased and put away about about the same time. Nice change from living in an area where I'd probably be throwing on a set of Carhartts to stay warm while shooting now.

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Shooting the S**t

 Got an invitation from a neighbor to try out his new .44 lever action and reloads, as well as his father's Winchester Model 94 that he'd found when his father passed, and just got around to loading up cast rounds for.

Shooting other people's guns? Hell yes, I'm up for that.

Of course, courtesy demands I bring toys to share, so an AR and S&W Highway Patrolman went into the truck for the trip to the family acreage. Shooting is informal compared to my local range. The backstop is the far bank of the creek, 150 yards from the well pump house, which also serves as the shooting rest. Which leads to less than ideal sighting in with a new never-rifle using an 8-inch shoot-n-see target on a piece of 2x2 cardboard with a couple hundred bullet holes in it.

So what does one do when tired of shooting a small target with poor feedback? Horse shit. Stands out great against yellow and green grass, misses are easily seen by the chunks of dirt flying in the air, and hits are, well, very easily seen as the material flies better than the dirt does. Revolvers at 100+ yards keep it interesting.But there are things more engaging blasting horse apples at long distances. Like having a copperhead pop up while crossing the creek recovering targets at the end of the day.

 Two men emptying revolvers into water a couple feet away, without prior planning or coordination, is very interesting indeed.

Ugly Gun Sunday

Sunday, March 31, 2013

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Shots From The Road

Always sad to see a great old house allowed to decay like this. This is the style of house I'd have if it were affordable to buy one in livable condition.

Friday, March 22, 2013

Shots From The Road

Something's wrong when your kids entertainment center is the same size as your house.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Shots From The Road

Give it a couple more years and it'll just be a big green mound.

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Sunday Hunting: A Cultural Difference Discovered

I just inadvertently learned from the Charlotte Television News that there is a bill to allow hunting on Sunday

I didn't know there were any states that didn't have Sunday hunting. This chance catch of a bit of news probably just saved me from wondering where everybody is right before an unpleasant conversation with the local version of the DNR next year (no time for hunting this year, and having one's hunting tools in another state doesn't help either).

The interview with a local pastor had him give a short speech on why there shouldn't be hunting on Sunday which can be condensed down to "you should be in church, it's a day of worship".

If you need to legislate hunting out of the picture to get men in your church, I suggest you look to your skills as a religious leader.

As for non-religious me, the firing range is my church, and I'm willing to bet money that a fair number of devout Christian hunters feel closer to God in the woods than seated in a pew.

Guess I'll be polishing the handgun skills on Sundays next fall.

Ugly Gun Sunday

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Ugly Gun Sunday

Possibly desert camouflage, although it looks inspired by this:

Friday, March 1, 2013

DNC Not Paying Debt?


A long time ago, an academic advisor told me that past behavior is the best predictor of future behavior. Given that, no one should be surprised by this.

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Like Winning the Lottery

By chance, I found a single 8 lb jug of Winchester 748 gun powder while stopping in to check out a small town sporting goods shop today. $161, plus tax. A quick check of the smart phone verified that it was cheaper than going through Midway for a single jug of the same size.

If they'd had any.

So I have enough powder to do a good bit of reduced-charge loads with cast bullets in the old military bolt guns this summer, along with the occasional full power loads. Pity that my cast bullet handloads now cost what surplus military cartridges did not so many years ago.

Japanese Mausers

At least that's what my neighbor thought he had. A couple of Japanese Mausers that someone had given him in the '80s.

Given my collecting habits, I had a fair idea of what he was talking about, but I like all old military bolt guns the same way I like all dogs: they don't have to be expensive purebreds to be fun and interesting.

The next comment got my attention again, although not in a good way: "Gimme a minute, and I'll get'em outta the shed". Which is apparently where they'd been for at least a decade, given the rust, cobwebs, and dead insects piled up in the chambers. But they were fairly secure from theft, given they were behind an abandoned filing cabinet in a dark second story corner of the building.

A brief inspection verified that all the important parts were there, and that they were Arisakas. One in 6.5 mm, and one in what appeared to be 7.7 mm, making me think it was a Type 99 initially. While I was pawing the goods, the neighbor is telling me how the factory cartridges he had (6.5 Japanese, it turns out), fit real good in one, but didn't work in the other. Comments like that tend to worry me, given the obvious bore difference. I followed that up with a short review of 6.5 and 7.7, the Type 38 and Type 99, and then off we went to find my stash of 7.7 brass.

Which didn't fit. Could almost close the bolt, but just a hair short. Time for a closer look at this rifle. No mum, not even a ground one; a "79" on the receiver; and most interesting of all, a .311 jacketed bullet dropped from the muzzle through the bore like a rock down a well. Check the bore then- the rifling is worn, but present, unlike the nifty Japanese rifle I bought full of cosmoline, only to find I'd purchased a smooth-bore training rifle after a good cleaning.

Now I'm thinking that "79" isn't some kind of factory marking. That's reinforced by the .323 jacketed bullet sitting in the muzzle very nicely. And  a sized piece of 7.9 x 57 brass snapping into the chamber with ease.

A review of the loading manuals for cartridge dimensions showed the 7.7 being 0.02 inches longer than the 7.9 at the leading edge of the shoulder, explaining the near fit of the 7.7; a little internet research turned up the information on the Nationalist and Communist Chinese use of converted Type 38s, including their use in Korea, as well as the same receiver markings.

If I'm correct, what the neighbor has is a Type 38 that's been to China during WWII, captured/turned over to the Nationalist Chinese who arsenal re-chambered it in 7.9 x 57 (no surprise, given Mauser and the Chinese Government's long association), which was then taken by/given to the Communist Chinese, who issued it to some troop sent over the Yalu River in Korea at some point, where it was dropped/surrendered, and brought home by the father of my nieghbor's friend, who brought it to him since he couldn't get it work.

Today, we'll be taking that rifle out. Now freshly cleaned of rust, dirt and old grease during a detailed cleaning, and freshly oiled inside and out. The bolt now glides in the receiver, closes with a satisfying snap, and the sear is back to the normal horrible military poundage rather needing a yank on the trigger. Underneath the handguard is the original military bluing. At one time, there was a handsome finish on that rifle. The rest is now at least a dark gunmetal color rather than reddish-brown. And the bore actually reflects light instead of swallowing it.

We'll see how she does.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Ugly Gun Sunday

Why shoot an intruder when you can make him laugh so hard he's on his knees until help shows up?

Monday, February 4, 2013

Damn Tiny Bullets

It occurs to me one of the reasons I like 7.62 bullets is that they are far less likely to get fumbled onto the floor when attempting to set them on the brass before seating. Also, I now remember exactly why I bought Dillon progressive presses. Single-stage reloading of any cartridge in quantity sucks. A lot. Especially with little tiny components.

Next purchase, .223 Remington cartridge conversion kit for a my Dillon 450.

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Ugly Gun Sunday

This is the type of finish I would expect to find on a shower curtain in a home with paintings of sad clown and Elvises (Elvi?) on velvet.

Friday, February 1, 2013

Little Bits of Goodness

Work may suck, but I just stopped by the local Merchant Of Death to pick up 2000 small rifle primers, and had a box of 10 $4.00 G3 mags waiting for me when I got home. Makes the day better, it does.

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Where exactly is there vegetation that matches this pattern? 

Monday, January 14, 2013

Could Have Gone Shooting

But I spent a good part of yesterday with this stump.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Bench Clean-up

How is it that a reloading bench can be covered in crap in less than 30 minutes, yet take over three hours to put everything away?

Yeah, that's not my bench...

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Ugly Gun Sunday

Whatever works......

In an hour, I'll be going out with a neighbor to shoot one those guns made of pure evil (One of my rifles. How I've managed to be surrounded by guns yet not succumb the unholy waves of bloodthirstiness they emit is a mystery on par with Magic Johnson still being alive).

 I've sent my opinion on ownership in to Congress (for what it's worth, given the Republican party has apparently decided to become a rubber-stamp assembly). I'll have to see if he's sent anything in. Might as well go through the motions, although it seems we're well down the road to the Mexican model of government: lots of government, crappy services, personal favoritism, and financial corruption.

If I could bug out for Wyoming circa 1880 I'd be outta here.