Saturday, October 01, 2005

And as to the tolerant, 'progressive', caring Left...

Check this out. Ace found it so you don't have to browse through the flowing sewage to find out about it. A Kos contributor says:
"We need terror. We need horror. We need the streets running awash in rivers of blood of these thugs and criminals and zealots. Activism didn't prevent 60,000 deaths in Vietnam. All the activism of the Civil Rights era has gotten African Americans precisely nowhere. Segregation may not be the law of the land anymore, but it's still the de facto state of America."

Isn't that just SO caring, SO wonderful, SO progressive?

And where does this 'segregation is still the de facto state' crap come from? Apparently this idiot doesn't consider no segregated schools, or jobs, or neighborhoods to be any kind of progress from the past. Probably the same kind of idiot who says Condi Rice isn't really 'black' anymore, or at least not black enough to count.

This is why I very rarely look over at Democratic Underground or Kos; I see crap like this, and the rhetorical pissing on the grave of Scalia, and shut it off. I probably should look more often, just to see what kind of utter stupidity is going on, but it's depressing.

Just to add to the mix in NO,

over at Mark in Mexico found this: ""Someone had told me, 'We saw the police driving your cars,' and then when we got here the dealership was in total disarray, totally smashed up, every door was kicked in and we were looted," he said."

Cadillacs and Corvettes and a tractor, oh my. And this gives a good example of what it's been like in NO: "Nevertheless, Stead stressed that neither he nor any other Sewell employee requested a formal investigation from any law enforcement agency.

"The attorney general's office contacted us, we did not contact them," he said. "Please make that clear because I have to live here, you know."

Think about that. Dealership cleaned out, trashed, and he didn't contact law enforcement because "I have to live here, you know". Tells you all you need to know about how NOPD has operated.

Let's talk about rebuilding NO. A: NO local/state politician gets to control money, B: NO local contractor/agency gets to approve work that's been done, C: NO police officer who ran off the job, looted, etc., has a job any more. Period. Screw any noise about 'stress', or 'you have to understand'; fired, and for the looters preferably a jail cell.

Can you imagine what it must be like for the real, HONEST police officers there? Year after year, surrounded by this kind of crap?

Friday, September 30, 2005

Carnival of Cordite #32

Up now at Gullyborg. Go ye, and enjoy.

Damn, Microlon is good stuff!

I've written about it in bores and in my bike. I've used it on trigger parts and slide rails. And a while back I decided to treat my loading dies with it. Take them apart, clean thoroughly, and then give them the five-coat treatment. Made a noticable difference in the force needed to run cases through.

After range day, between what I shot and picked up, I had over a hundred .30-06 cases to resize/deprime. Yesterday I lubed them(I've been using Lee lube), and tonight I ran them through. About halfway through I noticed that several cases took more effort than the others to run into and back out of the die. Then I really looked at the one I'd just resized. Then I looked at the rest of that group. Yeah, I'd missed lubing about ten cases, and six of these I resized before I noticed it. And none stuck.

If you don't reload, let me tell you this is a wonderful thing! Usually, if you forget to lube one case it gets stuck in the die(exception is made for carbide or titanium nitride dies), and you have to do some nastiness and swearing to get it out. And it usually ruins the case. Yet I ran a half-dozen cases through, one after the other, and none stuck.

This stuff ain't cheap, but for gun stuff at least it's worth every penny.

Thursday, September 29, 2005

Books that'd make good movies, if...

That's a big 'if'. If the Hollywood crap machine wouldn't ruin it. If the writers wouldn't screw with a perfectly good story. If the producers wouldn't throw in a bunch of extra explosions and/or gunfights and/or special effects crap just because "it's a good idea" or "we can do this!". And so forth.

I've mentioned this before, the Fafhrd and Grey Mouser stories Fritz Leiber wrote. Monsters, wizards, beautiful women(often scantily clad), swords and battles, the whole nine yards. CGI- used properly- would bring Ningauble of the Seven Eyes and Sheelba of the Eyeless Face to life; various critters and magic could show before us in all their glory. Damn, those are movies I'd pay to see!

More modern? Check out the Matt Helm books by Donald Hamilton. Spy stories that do NOT depend on more explosions and car chases instead of a plot, and a protagonist who's believable as a human being. Warts, scars and all. One of my favorite passages involved rescuing a girl from kidnappers. As they're preparing to break out, he explains to her that 'escaping is easy, escaping is no problem. As long as anybody who can stop us is dead'. Works for me.

A little less modern? The 'SPQR' series by John Maddox Roberts. Murder mysteries set in ancient Rome, with characters both historical and made up, backed by lots of research and believable portrayals of the people and places, with enough explanations worked in so the historical references make sense.

The Joe Leaphorn mysteries by Tony Hillerman. A Navajo Tribal Police officer investigating odd occurrances on the Big Rez. They made one of them into a movie for PBS with Robert effin' Redford directing, and mucked it up good.

Lord, there's a LOT of books and short stories out there that would make marvelous movies. Take the first Nero Wolf novel 'Fer de Lance' for one. The list goes on and on, mysteries and sci-fi and historical and... They all run into the same problem, though. When in college a friend and I decided that Fafhrd and the Mouser would be amazing on the big screen, but we didn't know if we wanted it to happen because Hollywood would probably screw it up.

I just wish they'd do it right, and prove us wrong.

Yard critters, and a change in the weather

One of the things that occasionally catches you by surprise is the amount of wildlife in this city. I've seen coyote crossing a major street at night, possums and raccoons galore(usually dead in the road), and squirrels everywhere. A few nights back when I came home from work I saw a dead squirrel in the street in front of my house. I figured I'd pick it up later and put it in the trash; it was after dark before I remembered, and when I stepped outside I heard a crunch, and found this in the yard:

It had pulled the squirrel well away from the road and proceeded to dine. Notice the paw over it, the "It's mine, you can't have it!" expression? I talked to it a bit, and it didn't run away, and when I came back out to take this it didn't spook at the flash. In the morning all trace of the squirrel was gone, either eaten or carried away.

Speaking of squirrels, this relative of the deceased was in the back the next day:

Yeah, I feed them. Not daily, every two or three days I put a bit out. I enjoy watching them, and the dogs like chasing them. Have you ever noticed that some of the little beasts like to play with dogs? They'll cross the yard in plain sight when they could go by fence or wires, then lead a chase. I saw one do this, and not five minutes later go back the other way. That time he damn near didn't make it, sailing through the fence maybe an inch in front of one of the dogs.

At the house I used to live in, one night the dogs were having fits, in that "Boss! Boss! There's something here!" way, so I went out with a flashlight. I couldn't see anything, until the light hit the top of a fence post, and the friggin' enormous possom perched there. Three directions he could have gone to get away, but there he sat, driving the dogs nuts. I finally put the dogs in the garage for a while and it left.

You'll see a lot of rabbits at times, too. I keep waiting for a wallaby or something to show up some evening.

Wednesday, September 28, 2005

More from range day

I've mentioned before the M1 Garand. It's one of my favorite rifles, both to contemplate and to shoot. When I got this one it was standard GI, with a barrel installed in the 1950's that had seen better days. I found a good barrel and had it installed(I don't have headspace guages, the the gunsmith gave me a very good price on the work). It shot better, but the trigger was a little heavy and gritty, and the front sight was just a tad loose.

The trigger I cleaned up with the directions I found through Fulton Armory. Look down the left side to 'M1 Garand pages', which will, among others, get you to the 'Garand Info Place', and there is the 'How-To Guides', including how to improve the trigger. Which, by the way, is a wonderful piece of design and engineering. Strong, reliable, and still in use. One of the nice things about it is that when you engage the safety, it actually locks the hammer in place; if you do something so bad it'll break the hammer loose, you've probably trashed the rifle itself. And it's fairly simple to smooth up. I will take a moment to remind you of what I wrote in a post on trigger work: If you don't have the knowledge to mess with the trigger mechanism on a firearm, DON'T! If you have any doubt of your ability to look it over and follow the directions exactly, leave the damn thing alone.

Ahem. That done, their method did a wonderful job of smoothing out my trigger, which made it nicer to shoot. I've mentioned before shimming the trigger assembly to tighten the lockup of trigger, receiver and stock, which helped. The last thing I did I'd read of before, and that was tightening up the sight/gas cylinder assembly. In the M1 the front sight is mounted on the top of the gas cylinder, and it slides onto the barrel as a unit. There are splines in the assembly and on the barrel that lock it into alignment and keep it from wobbling. However, it's not unusual for them to be a little loose. Tolerances in mass-manufacturing, you know. So after reading some advise on the subject from Publicola, I took a flat-nose punch and my 2oz. hammer and very lightly peened the corners of the splines on the barrel. I emphasize VERY LIGHTLY. From what I've read/been told, match rifles are set up tight enough you have to use a mallet and wood block to drive the assembly into place on the barrel. You don't have to get it that tight, but you need it to be tight enough that the assembly has zero wobble on the barrel; it only takes a couple of thousandths to move the point of impact at a distance. When I was done, mine takes tapping with a block to set it into place. Cleaning, you ask? From what I know of both M1 and M1A rifles, you take the assembly off only when necessary, and unless you're using corrosive primed ammo, you can clean the bore and action without removing it.

How did it work? Originally, I could get 4-6" groups. After the trigger and shimming the action, cut that by about half. After the sight work, I got this at 100 yards:

That's 1 3/4" for the three-shot group. I had one problem today; I'd noticed that I seemed to be stringing shots vertically a bit. I thought it was my fault(it was, but not in the way I thought), until I did some other things, came back to the Garand and found that the group fired was about 5" low. Upon which I found that the locking screw for the elevation adjustment was loose, which had let recoil bump the rear sight elevation. That got tightened down, the sight was readjusted, and with my last clip I shot this. I stopped at three because that only left 5 rounds, and I don't like to be out of ammo for whatever I have along. By the way, does anybody else do that? Or and I the only one that weird?
Never mind.

In any case, a few simple things really improved the accuracy of this rifle. The ammo, by the way, was some of the Korean M2 ball that's on the market Standard GI ball. I'm tempted to get some match ammo and try it out. Although with this performance, I'll damn sure try to get some more of this stuff.

I shot my postal match entries, and the other thing I wanted to check out was this:

It's an Enfield revolver chambered in .38 S&W. NOT .38 Special, the cartridge that preceeded it. Double-action only, break-top. See the lever in front of the hammer? Push it down and the barrel/cylinder assembly swings down, and the ejector kicks out the empties. Drop in fresh cartridges, close the action and you're ready. These things were originally designed for a load firing a 200 grain lead bullet at about 650-700 feet per second. Later, to comply with the Geneva Convention(I believe) they switched to a 170 grain jacketed bullet. The original load had a good reputation as a fight-stopper, the later load not nearly as good. The big reason we wanted to get to the original load was accuracy. You may know that a pistol sighted in for a heavy bullet load, when fired with a light bullet, tends to hit low. With 125 grain bullets in this one, about 6" low at ten yards. With 165 grain semi-wadcutters, accuracy was quite good but still low. Then I found a Lyman mold that throws a 195 grain round-nose bullet that looks almost identical to the original. I cast some bullets, and since the .38 S&W has a larger bullet diameter than .38 Special I didn't size them; just lubed with Lee Liquid Alox and loaded them up.

Shooting it was a pleasure. Still mild recoil, but you could feel a definate difference between this and the light-bullet loads. And, more to the point, point of impact seems to be up with point of aim, as it should be. Makes it a lot nicer to shoot. I'm thinking of getting hold of one for myself, and maybe making some grips that fit my hand better- the factory ones are kind of squared-off. And with this load, I think it'd make a pretty good defense weapon if you had to grab it.

Ah, range day. It almost always improves things.

One thing for sure, and more questions in NO

From Say Uncle we hear that Compass, head of the NOPD has resigned. He also notes that the mayor and Compass are both denying that any confications of guns took place, despite videotaped incidents and some guns being returned.

Now another thing. I heard a report on the radio today that the FBI was investigating the NOPD officers who 'disappeared' during/after Katrina, and discovered that many of them did not exist. I've read that the British army used to have a problem with officers keeping men killed/invalided out on the rolls and keeping their pay; if this is true in NO, then someone has been keeping the pay and benefits of the nonexistent officers. That's a damn lot of money over time, and I wonder what may turn out to be Compass' part in this? He may not be involved, but the sudden retirement makes me wonder. Combine this with the large pile of excrement falling on him and the mayor and the PD over the lousy response to Katrina and the confiscations... Someone is in a heap of trouble.

Just found these: in light of the information in the second link following, even if it wasn't someone in a position of authority pocketing money from the pay of nonexistent officers, the question(along with the fraud involved) is, were any of these retired and reserve officers collecting active-duty officer pay? Michelle Malkin has more information on the retirement here, and links to this. Money quote: "Fox News' Tony Snow has said that of the 1700 police working for New Orleans, maybe only 1000 really exist."

Rifle postal match entries

Had a chance to get to the range today, and was able to shoot entries for the Looter Shooter match. Just to get the heart pumping a bit, I went to the frame and set up a target, walked back putting in my earplugs as I went, picked up the rifle and loaded, then dropped to kneeling behind the bench and fired, except for the 25 yard target; the range doesn't allow rifles on the 25 yard line, so I set it up at 50, walked back 25 paces, loaded and fired from kneeling First is with my SKS at 25 yards:

I make it 89 points.

Next, SKS at 50. I actually shot this one first:

89 points. I didn't notice until after I got home that I only loaded 9 rounds on this one. This was explained by the loose cartridge in the pouch, having slipped out of the stripper when I pulled it out. Dammit.

Last is the M1 at 50 yards:

91 points. On it I loaded, fired off the 8-round clip, reloaded and fired two more. I really like shooting this rifle, and it just seems to get better with time.

Lastly, just for fun, I set one up at 10 yards and hit it with an Enfield .38 revolver with some loads I was testing, shooting from behind a post:

I pulled two high, just outside the scoring ring.

Oh, Mr. Analog Kid? At 50 yards your !(*&*#$^% little duckie is a small, yellow blur.

I don't think I'm winning any prizes with these, but the looters are DRT.

It's been a busy few days

This started last Saturday. My son called to inform me his transportation had crapped out. Not that simply, oh no. First, his started died. A pain, but no big deal. Taking the starter off, one bolt stripped. So he push-started it so he could get something to take the bolt out, and could barely get out of the parking lot. He though alternator, but further checking showed it to be in the wiring harness from the alternator on out(as an aside, I'd like to find who came up with the idea of fusable links instead of fuses and shoot him). You know what Ford wants for the harness? $400. No, no used ones available anywhere around. There were several things he'd planned to fix over the next couple of months, but this added on caused him to decide to look for a new vehicle. Better to make payments for something that'll keep you moving than to be pecked to death by ducks.

So he spent the next few days looking for a vehicle. Happily he's licensed for motorcycles and could ride my bike, otherwise it would've been me getting off work and driving him around. And him begging rides to and from work.

One of the things this brought back is how he's come to hate most car salesmen. In particular, there's a Ford dealer on May Avenue that had a truck that seemed what he was looking for. Only the salesman a: treated him like a nuisance, b: wouldn't let him take a test drive, c: didn't want to tell him the price because "we don't like to give prices until we know you qualify for financing", and d: kept trying to push him into a two years newer one. By telling him that he was about to walk inside and ask the manager, he finally got a price: the '03 he was looking at, he was told, cost several hundred more than the '05 the guy was pushing. Son left, and advised me later that even if they'd later come up with a better price, no way in hell he'd buy from them. So they lost a customer. Happily, another dealer had a truck that would work nicely, at a better price, and they treated him decently. Guess who just got a check from the credit union?

As an aside, son went to OSU for a year as an engineering student, then decided that wasn't what he wanted to do after all and didn't return. He's been paying ever since on the student loans he had to take out to finish the year, and due to a mess-up with that, his credit is not good. So I had to cosign on the loan. Looking at the costs of books, and tuition, and fees, and going into debt to pay for all this, God knows why so many people are willing to go. Yes, education is generally a good thing. But when a lot of what you're required to take is bullshit, for which you have to pay large prices, it ain't worth it. Mind you, the hard sciences like engineering are a lot less affected by the bull than others, but check this out to see some of the ways those are being made less attractive. Yeah, yeah, if you're determined you won't mind. Sounds good, but it's bullshit. When people damn near go out of their way to make it more difficult for you to get what you need, people are more likely to say to hell with it and walk out. End of bitching.

A few years ago, the idiot dealership is the one where I went 'round & 'round with a salesman who had no problem giving prices, but kept pushing me to buy something other than what I wanted. That idiot finally called me and said he had 'just what I was looking for'. A couple of days later I went to look, just on the off-chance that he might have finally paid attention to what I'd said. He drove up a truck that- let's say that he took a list of what I did not want, and put it all on one truck and told me it was "just what I wanted". And then, after I'd said no, he came out with his big phrase: "What would I have to do to get your business today?" I have never in my life come closer to putting on my radio voice and bellowing "Try f'ing LISTENING to me!" Instead, I just walked out. This place has changed management since then, but apparently they've still got the attitude problem. I have no idea how they'll pay for the new building they just moved into.

I hate looking for a car.

Monday, September 26, 2005

New on the blogroll

The Nation of Riflemen Forums. Since the loss of the much-missed K & family, it's been taken over lock, stock & archives. If you were already a member, logon is the same.

If you're not a member, why not? Great stuff, Maynard.

Oh, how well it works in Canada!

Their gun registration program, that is. The one that was supposed to cost a few million, and at last audit- in which the information had to be dragged out kicking and screaming- was up to five hundred million dollars? And that doesn't work? I was looking at Captain's Quarters and found this post on the matter, which links to this article in the Winnipeg Sun.

"Originally expected to be self-financing by 1999-2000, Fraser and her auditors discovered the target for the firearms program to break even was pushed to 2013 -- an assumption that the program collect $419 million in fees in 2002-03 and about $828 million by 2007-08." Don't you just love that? The 'assumption' that it will break even in eight years, at hundreds of times the cost it was estimated for?

The previous audit? "The last time her office attempted to look into gun registry spending was 2002 and the results were explosive. In fact, her team was forced to abandon its attempts to follow the spending on the gun registry because of the absence of records." Nice, transparent government up there, wouldn't you say? And about as honest as, oh, Louisiana levee boards?

But it makes them safer, you say? "Worse than that, he added, it doesn't work. "No one has ever connected it to public safety. If you put the equivalent money or resources into front-line policing, into training, public awareness and general policing resources that, to me, would be a far more effective means of addressing firearms-related violence," MacKay said."

And the Captain points out something else: the program has drained a huge amount of money and resources from the RCMP, which is the only LE agency up there that can investigate the Canadian executive branch. Considering what's turned up the last few months in the form of corruption, he may be right that that was one of the aims behind pushing this waste of resources.

Ain't it just a wonderful example of how well crap like this works?

Sunday, September 25, 2005

General stuff

Gullyborg has an onion soup recipe that looks damn good. The sandwiches I don't know about; I've never even heard of fontina cheese before.

I want Uncle to take that rifle to the range and try it out with the new mount. I've read reports from some people that accuracy has improved with the Ultimak; I'd like to know if it works that way for him.

A place I don't look at often enough is the Dog Snot Diaries. Yes, despite the name. He's got a very nice Democrat Party symbol here; he got it from the Ex-Donkey, who I'd never heard of before. Don't you just love the way this works?

Snotty also has this up, you really should take a look. Michelle Malkin's blog is a place I usually check daily, and she's posted some of her hate mail a time or two; the crap listed here are a step beyond some of her hate mail, but not by much. This is pretty bloody awful stuff, and the clowns are proud of it.

The Ex-Donk has this on the mindset of the enemy. Not the enemy listed above, the Islamist enemy. Worth taking note of. The last time we fought an enemy with this general mindset it was the Japanese, and it took all-out war and several years to defeat them; when you've got an enemy who(in the case of the true believers) doesn't care about living, it makes the usual method of defeating an enemy less useful.

Steve, in a few days, has told us all about people who die on boats, positive and negative ions, points out Walter Cronkite is/was an asshole, got tickets to Serenity, and keeps us up on various aspects of cooking and beer guzzling. Oh, and sex, reproduction and the Catholic Church and Andrew Sullivan. In one post. Such value, for such a low price!