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Education / Training A shrine built for a Feinwerkbau 124 – Part 5

A shrine built for a Feinwerkbau 124 – Part 5

by B.B Pelletier

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4

Before I start, a couple of reminders. First is the Facebook event on Tuesday, April 8, at 8 p.m. Eastern. I’ll be on the Pyramyd AIR Facebook page for an hour to answer questions you send in. To ask questions, you need a Facebook account and you must be a Friend of Pyramyd AIR. Register early and don’t miss out.

Next, don’t forget the Arkansas Airgun Extravaganza, April 30 & May 1. This airgun show is open to the public on Friday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., and Saturday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Six-foot tables are $50 each. Admission is $5. Kids 12 and under get in free with an adult. Dealer setup is on Friday, 8 a.m. to 10 a.m. Visit the show website here.

The show is filling fast, and it looks like it’ll be larger than last year’s Little Rock show, which it replaces. I hope you consider attending. I’d sure like to meet as many of you as possible, and I’ll be bringing several of my airguns to show and possibly to shoot, including today’s rifle.

Also, a word to show-goers. If you’re going to attend the show only on Saturday, come before noon. Airgun dealers get antsy toward the end of every show and start packing up early. Unlike gun shows, they’re not penalized for this. Get there while the show is still running strong.

Today, I’ll tell you what I did to the 124 after discovering that the Mongoose kit wasn’t performing up to my expectations. You may recall that it was shooting Crosman 7.9-grain Premiers at an average of 670 f.p.s. I had expected at least 840 f.p.s. Although the firing behavior was very smooth and delightful, I had hoped to break at least 800 f.p.s., so I continued to work on the rifle.

First, I removed the mainspring only and wiped off about 3/4 of the black tar grease. That still left enough to kill all vibration, and the velocity rose to about 700 f.p.s. That’s a gain of about 40 f.p.s. It’s possible to remove the mainspring without a total disassembly, so it was quick and I did it first to see what gains there would be.

Next, I completely disassembled the rifle and removed all the lubrication from the powerplant. I carefully relubricated it very sparingly, keeping the use of tar confined to the outer coils of the mainspring. That got me to 710-720 f.p.s., which was about as far as the Mongoose kit is going to take me.

I’d treated the Mongoose kit as a drop-in instant power booster, and apparently it’s not. It’s more of a 1970s-era 124 kit that needs to be coaxed to shoot as fast as possible–just like the factory 124. I discovered something very important about the piston seal. It’s domed. With that shape, it’ll never produce the absolute fastest velocity since the top of the dome stops it from compressing all the air in the chamber. It may seem like a small thing when you look at it, but this last bit of compressed air is where the big things happen. Maccari has made this seal to cushion the piston blow rather than develop maximum power, so consider that when you order your tuneup kit.

The Mongoose piston seal has a raised, dome-shaped crown. It cannot compress all the air in front of it.

Compare this Surrey 124 seal to the Mongoose seal. See how flat it is on top?

At this point, there were several different directions open to me. One was to start shimming the Mongoose mainspring for extra compression. That would boost power. Another was to abandon the Mongoose seal in favor of a flat one. That would compress the air more thoroughly and give more power.

I took a third step that’s not available to any of you. From my years of working on argues, I had other mainsprings available. I selected a stouter one that was shorter but had a spacer top hat on one end. The other end fit the spring guide very tightly because this was an experimental Maccari 124 mainspring. I retained the Mongoose seal for smoothness and assembled the rifle with minimal lubrication. No black tar because the new spring fit much tighter than the Mongoose spring. I used moly grease on everything. I knew I would lose some power with the Mongoose seal, but that was okay for now. All I wanted was a working 124 with decent power.

As I assembled the rifle, I also answered someone’s concern about the safety spring. They had heard it is a concern when assembling a 124, but I say as long as your spring compressor is a good one the safety spring is easy to install. Hopefully, the pictures will show you how it’s done.

This is the 124 trigger unit with the safety slide and spring removed.

Here’s the spring I’ve been calling the safety spring. It’s actually a trigger-return spring, but it presses against the safety slide.

And here’s the safety slide on top of the trigger unit. You can see the spring between the trigger unit and this slide. As the trigger unit enters the spring tube, the safety slide is pressed flat and retained. There’s really no difficulty installing these parts as long as you use a mainspring compressor.

Following this tune, the rifle is averaging 800 f.p.s. with 7.9-grain Crosman Premiers. While that’s not as much as I want, I’m fine with it for the moment. The gun fires quick and doesn’t vibrate when it shoots, so the tighter parts are as trouble-free as can be. The velocity varies between 783 f.p.s. and 802 f.p.s. Experience tells me this will tighten, and the average velocity will increase by 10-15 f.p.s. as this tune wears in.

I’d planned to test the rifle for accuracy at this point, but I’m not yet finished with the project. The barrel’s gunked up with oil and grease that I don’t want to clean out until I’m done tuning.

My plan is to now install a Maccari Old School kit and be done with it. This is the kit I used to install in 124 rifles 15 years ago, and I know I can expect a velocity over 840 f.p.s. with 7.9 Premiers. The best result I ever got is still averaging 880 f.p.s.

Well, this little adventure has turned into quite the saga, hasn’t it? I never envisioned spending this much time with this rifle. Now that I have, I’ve decided what to do with the gun in the future. I’ll keep the rifle outside the case and shoot it from time to time. It was silly keeping it tucked away where I got to see it only every couple years. That isn’t what this rifle was made for, and I intend getting the full value out of it.

Someone asked me what all this tuning does to the value of the gun. Well, the box only adds value in a non-monetary way. Yes, it’s worth more than a rifle by itself, but this is no collectible. It’s more of a curiosity. So, I feel the tuning does nothing but enhance the value of the gun. I won’t scope this rifle because of the pristine condition, but I will leave it out of the case as a shooter.

In the future, I will chronograph and also shoot for accuracy the vintage Beeman Silver Jet pellets, which–believe it or not, started this whole report in the first place.

On Monday, I’ll show you a 124 clone Vince sent to me.

212 thoughts on “A shrine built for a Feinwerkbau 124 – Part 5”

  1. AlanL,

    You guys got me thinking as well. They say “The road to hell is paved with good intensions”. As strongly as I feel about the importance of gun education I realize that I’ve “crossed the line” here (with the boy and his mother). Being that the boy is 15 his mother is all three branches of his government for the next 3 years. I have challenged her authority and that is wrong. If someone did the same thing to one of my children they would have one upset caveman on their hands! I am going to hand deliver my apology letter and except my well deserved punishment.


    • Hi BB and All,
      I have just bought a classic fwb 124 (serial number 55717), good condition externally, shot well and pretty accurate. 2 days ago I opened it properly with a spring compressor just to have a check concerning its internal condition. Put everything back on its place with no issue. But when I tried to cock it, it didnt click. I do not know what went wrong. Perhaps something to do with the safety tab? But I really dont have any idea why. BB, can you please help and give any clue on what could possibly went wrong? I’d really appreciate it. Thank you.

  2. Caveman,

    I repect your decision, as I sensed a lost casue from the start.

    But if your involvement has not been discovered yet, it might be best for the boy for you to just break it off and leave it at that.

    Your apology will inform the mother of his passion, and she will likely react very poorly for all sorts of reasons including to spite the father.

    Coming clean may be best for you, but please be sure it is best for the boy. You can always come clean later on if needed, but you can never undo it once you have done it.

    I don't know all the facts, so take this with a grain of salt. But be sure whatever you do is in the boy's best interest. After all, at 15 he will be seeking out and getting lots of input and advice from others specifiacally becasue he want to hear from other people than his mother – that is part of growing up, and you didn't casue that. Your advice is probably better than what he would have got elsewhere. Don't beat yourself up over it, but I agree withdrawing is the best course. You can always check up on him in afew years when it is more his choice.

    Alan in MI

  3. I was gonna say that the way the safety slide went together looked rather familiar…

    I recently purchased Evan Nappen's 'New Jersey Gun Law Guide', and it was a bit of an eye-opener. BB and air guns are almost all, by legal definition, 'shotguns' or 'assault weapons' because of a) short barrel length, b) they don't fire 'fixed ammunition', and c) more than a 6-round capacity (for repeaters). Fortunately the NJ DA has decided not to apply the letter of the law to airguns, but technically speaking, he could.

    Second – if I took possesion (which means 'pick it up') of an airgun in DE or PA and bring it to NJ, there's no problem. I think the same holds true for any firearm – long gun or pistol.

    Third – whenever I take delivery of an air gun via UPS or USPS, I'm violating NJ law which itself may be violating a federal statute, so it might not hold up in court. But once the gun is acquired, possession isn't an issue.


    Oh, and if there are minors in the house ALL the air guns must be locked up.

  4. BB,
    800 with 7.9 gr. pellets shouldn't be all bad — it seems to be right at a sweet spot for accommodating all types of pellets, from wadcutters to points. How is the firing behavior? If it is good, I would space up what you have just a bit, provided you must have 840; my bet is it only takes a small increase in length. Or is that your intention with the Old School kit? At least it is still available, so people with 124's can follow along.

  5. Vince, State law allows you to acquire "long arms"and only requirements are completion of that rediculous certificate of eligibility but out of state it needs to be filled out by FFL holder. But the form doesn't get filed with ANYONE! Weird.

    Fred PRoNJ

  6. That 'domed' seal ain't holding you back none. Mine is running the same mean green unit, and I've tuned it to produce 14 ft lbs (866 fps with 8.4 gn JSBs), obviously a hot-running 124.

  7. B.B.,

    I'm very impressed by your patience and persistance.

    Between you and Vince I've had to admit I'm a tinkerer out of necessity and typically get more frustration than enjoyment from the process.

    The Maccari Old School kit seems to be the hands down favorite for the 124.


  8. Fred, buying an airgun out of state doesn't even require that much!

    Strange how I honestly believed that buying a BB gun at Dick's in Delaware was questionable, but it's not. And how receiving an airgun via UPS to my house – I thought that was OK because I have an FID, but apparently that's iffy.

  9. I just got a chance to catch up on the comments from yesterday, and what a tragic story of Jessica Gonzalez and her children. Why any father would kill his own children is beyond comprehension to me. The world can be a sick and cruel place.

    Reading through the court documents I did see something I would like to point out regarding the spin the media can put on things. Here is an excerpt from the news article…

    "Jessica Gonzales found that out the hard way. She was separated from her husband, Simon, and had custody of their three minor children. After she obtained a restraining order against him, he came to her house and kidnapped their children. Jessica called the police, who came to her house – and did NOTHING!

    By court order, Simon was allowed only limited access to his children. Taking them away from Jessica's house was not among the privileges he enjoyed. That's why Jessica called the police in the first place. The officers took no action against Simon because they felt he had a legal right to take the children. Furthermore, they stated that going to Jessica's house and abducting the children was still in compliance with the restraining order against him!"

    Now, adressing the same restraining order from the court docs…

    "The temporary restraining order that has been previously filed by the Petitioner [Ms. Gonzales] shall be come (sic) permanent, however, said restraining order shall be modified to allow Respondent [Mr. Gonzales] to pick up the minor children from the home of the Petitioner for parenting time purposes. The remaining terms of the restraining order shall remain in effect and may be modified (or dissolved if Petitioner deems it appropriate) at permanent orders.

    As noted in note 1 above, the order was subsequently modified to permit Mr. Gonzales to pick up the children directly from Ms. Gonzales’s home for the “parenting time” to which he was entitled, including a mid-week dinner visit

    Curiously, Ms. Gonzales did not allege in her complaint that she ever notified the police of her contention that Mr. Gonzales was actually in violation of the restraining order. She alleged only that Mr. Gonzales had taken the children mid-week around dinner time without her permission. Complaint ¶ 10 (PA 126a). She did not allege that she had informed the police that she had not given her permission for the dinner-time visit, but simply alleged that she showed to the police the restraining order, which expressly allowed mid-week dinner visits. Complaint ¶¶ 9, 11-12 (PA 126a). Based on these allegations (which Petitioner disputes), the police might reasonably have believed that Mr. Gonzales was not in violation of the order, either because he had not been served with it, or because he had permission for the Tuesday dinner visit, or because Ms. Gonzales had, contrary to the terms of the restraining order, unreasonably denied permission for a mid-week dinner visit."

    Again I realize this is a tragic story, and I don't know how anyone could have anticipated this man's intentions, but it does go to show how an irresponsible news media will report these stories. That article, to me, seemed hugely critical of the Supreme Court based on "facts" that weren't so factual. The sad part is you'll see the article on the front page of the paper, but you have to dig through 40 pages of court docs to get the truth.


  10. Aaron,

    You did a lot of work! I stand corrected.

    Yet, the basic fact remains that law enforcement has no legal obligation to protect you, and we have no Constitutional right to protection by law enforcement.

    I'm not saying cops don't care. I'm saying cops don't have to do diddly. (That was the whole point of my post.)


    wv: properu (why, thank you…I DO try to be proper at all times 🙂

  11. Edith – I understand what you are saying and I find it equally concerning. I don't disagree at all with your point of being prepared to defend your home an your family. But after reading that article(and I'll admit that seeing the source of the article had something to do with it) something didn't sit well with me, so I read the court docs to get more of the scoop. I was just trying to point out that our friends in the news media can be pretty irresponsible when it comes to getting there agenda driven point across.


  12. Aaron,

    Wow! good work with the research. That does clear some things up, as I was kind of wondering just what the h–l those cops where thinking when it all was going down.

    Vince, I am laughing at myself for the frustration I had last night over removing the slide and the simplicity of your answer, thanks. I never turned the thing upside down until I read your reply. Feeling stupid!!

    I'm gonna try to fix it, so don't go on vacation or anything!

    Caveman, I understand what your going through with the boy. Your decision to back off and check up on is a wise one. Shooting and handling guns safely isn't the only lesson he has to learn here. Respecting Mom's authority while under her roof during this critical age is important, for starters.

  13. OK – getting back to AIRGUNS; I just tested my domed-sealed 124 with CPLs, and the ten-shot average was 889.8 — still 14 ft lbs. The high was tantilizingly close to 900 fps (899.9!!! – Oh. COME. ON!!!!). A flat face would probably give me that extra 0.1 fps, but, at this point, I have no evidence suggesting the domed seal sacrifices more than a trivial amount of energy. You are right to focus on the spring and spacing.

  14. Volvo,

    Saw that video yesterday.

    The 60's were really good to the artist that did that sculpture outside the show.

    The Air Arms/Domino designed twin cylinder pcp is interesting but the self contained FX side cocking was the winner for me. Looked to easy to cock considering the power it generates.


  15. I agree with Steve above. The domed seal has always got me over 800 fps With JSB 8.4's in several 124's. The key was sizing the seal right wiht the sandpaper. JM makes the seals slightly oversized to deal with the fact that some tubes are larger than others. I have used both the OS kit spring and the mongoose spring and find that the seal has more to do with the final numbers anyway.


  16. BG_Farmer,

    There is zero room left in this setup. Maccari took all of the room out when he developed what is in the gun now.

    The Old School kit also has a much shorter mainspring and a spacer. I don't have to have 840, but knowing that it's possible make 800 seem low, if you get my meaning. Also, the Old School setup is incredibly easy to cock.

    I will show the components when I report on it.


  17. Kevin,

    I agree. The Old School kit is the way to go. I should have done it the first time, but back when I was doing this all the time Maccari's kits didn't have names. So I wasn't sure which one I had used.

    I could have spaced up the Mongoose spring, but then I would have had to use black tar again and I didn't want top go back through that.

    On a happy note, I just returned from the rifle range, where my Trapdoor Springfield shown with a new load I haver developed. So I am a happy camper today.


  18. Caveman:
    I know where you are coming from.
    As a lad I used to belong to an ameture boxing club and loved it.
    From being a bullied introvert at school I became more confident and without even throwing a punch got more respect at school.mainly because my new found friends in the boxing club were the baddest guys on the block.
    A friends teenage son was having all the same problems I did at that age.My projected enthusiasm about Ameture boxing as a possible solution was not welcomed by the mum at all.
    Did I feel the need to apolagise about suggesting her son take up a character building persuit.
    It's not your fault some folk can't see the wood for the trees.

  19. Nothing wrong wiht a small amount of black tar or moly. The OS spring doesn't vibrate much if at all anyway. Its a synergy tpye setup that the old school kit does with its lighter preload. Seal sizing is KEY.

    To help those doing these guns I'ss say this: I like these guns to have a 1-2 pound range max to begin sliding (the piston and moly lubed seal) in the compression chamber area (not at the back of the end – cocking slot) Get it down and in the tube and move it back and forth with a dowel. Then put it on an accurate scale. Start pushing the dowel on the piston and against the scale. (my scale measures 0.00-50.00 lbs. with two decimals.) Go for 1-1.5 lbs. to begin it moving (it should be lubed) after initial movement it drops to less than that starting movement weight.

    The best way I size these JM seals is use a cordless drill chuck up the piston and using a bench vice with the flat anvil side put the emery paper on the flat steel and manipulate the drill to keep the angle of the face of the seal the same as the original angle. Use the same paper grit you are using (I use 220-320). The other thing is that the piston seal should not rotate on the piston while you do this with the drill. If it does you need to secure it with dental floss. Take about 3-4 feet of floss and wrap it in the seam between the seal and piston and tape the end on the piston for later removal. Size the seal and then remove the floss to check it in the tube. The floss is only temporary to size it and should not be left on. It raises the seal against the piston and the tapered plug part of the seal is pulled out a bit and forces it to jam and hold in place for the sizing process. I've done it lots of times.

    Take the seal back down this way and it will be uniform per say.

    FYI: Try JSB exacts. 8.4 grs. They have shot much better in the CTC accuracy department as well as shoot faster than the harder CP'S do in most FWB 124 tight bore and choked barrels I've seen.

    Hope this helps.


  20. B.B.,

    What great fun.

    I'm convinced we should continue to live at least one State apart from one another. If we didn't the wives would have the gun range on speed dial and would be constantly calling to remind us that dinner is getting cold.


  21. BB,
    Thanks for answering my spring tar question in today's post. You even answered the question I was going to ask next (about removing all tar). You are good!!

    I'd like thank Caveman and AlanL for the Civics lesson. Sometimes a refresher course is needed. I was about to break in and point out that one of you seemed to be arguing the the way the government is designed while the other was arguing the way it gets put into practice, which are two different arguments that can't resolve each other.

    Bet you never thought your blog would be a Civics lesson. Ya gotta love it!


  22. Hide a motorcycle? You know that you cannot hide anything from me. I know how to trick you into telling me what you don't want me to know.

    I've got your number!


  23. Kevin,

    I think the FX is interesting, but for myself I doubt it would be worth the added weight. Personally I spent a good bit of time figuring out what rifle would be the lightest at over 30ft lbs and then looked for a 12X scope that would go less than a pound, etc. I can’t see that duct taping a pump to the side of it would make sense for me.

    That said, I am sure it will be a hot seller on release with “the got to have the latest and greatest” crowd and who knows it just might be?


  24. Hi Edith,

    I know you're a website guru and former blog mistress, so when I saw your bold font up above, I wondered how you did it. Well, I figured it out! Look out Vince, Caveman, now I can scream! And throw a tantrum in italics!

    Forgive me, I'm always tickled when I learn new stuff (even little little stuff.)


  25. BB, thanks for the kind words yesterday. I'm not really as competent as I seem and I definitely have a long way to go.

    My "mentor" George is a lot like Bert Munro though. I've sent Derrick some pics of his projects, like a Martini carbine in .357 mag that has an octagonal barrel he hand filed for 16" to transition to a round taper, or a handmade titanium derailleur.
    Here's the rifle:

    I have a long way to go!

  26. Here's a check on the Supreme Court. When Justice John Marshall struck down some policy favored by President Andrew Jackson, Jackson's response was: "Marshall made his ruling. Now let him enforce it."–which he could not of course. I think Dick Cheney did the same thing when the Court ruled he had to turn over some documents. He just refused and nothing happened. Of course this option may not be available to the ordinary citizen.

    Edith, since police are not legally obligated to protect people what is their basis for doing so at all? Surely, they don't respond to calls for distress when they feel like it, and there must be some consequences if they just ignore a 911 call. What is it that makes them protect people?


  27. Caveman

    I admire your desire to come clean so to speak with the mother of the lad you are trying to mentor. I also admire your work with the 4H clubs, which is an excellent program.

    I agree with Alan in MI, if you do this, the best thing that could come out of it is that you release some of the guilt that you needlessly saddled yourself with. Some people's greatest delight in life is to make someone else's life miserable. You don't want to give someone the rope to hang you with. Retribution against the father, the boy, maybe a lawsuit, frivolous yes, but no less stressful- filed against you. Stop the covert ops, but stay off the radar screen. I'm sure you would explain to the boy why you cannot continue the instruction, of course, lest he feel rejected.

    Keep up the good work.

  28. Volvo,

    Interesting point about additional point that the pump may add. I'm an optimist and think the gun will weigh just a little more than a blue streak.


  29. I should be flogged and sacked for leaving Nick off my list yesterday, impromptu though it was.

    So, quick plug for Nick. He sells Taig Lathes and accessories. He has a website where he does so at http://www.cartertools.com/

    On that site you will find more Taig Lathe links than any one person could follow in a lifetime. If you need a lathe or know someone that does…

    Also his blog http://anotherairgunblog.blogspot.com/ co-authored by his wife Felice and derrick38, sells Chapman gunsmithing screwdriver sets which can be found at http://www.mechanicalphilosopher.com/chapman.html good stuff. And more airgun how to's than you can shake a dead cat at. Oops, mixed a metaphor, sorry.

    I will order a Chapman set myself just as soon as I get PAID, seeing as how the guy with the Savage is never going to email me back.

  30. Edith

    When I saw it all before me, expressed in random punctuation marks, it became so clear;^) Thanks.

    BTW, you know about medical stuff right? I just carried a 29" CRT television up a flight of stairs, and now part of my intestine is sticking out of my belly button, is that bad?

  31. Matt61,

    There's no Constitutional right to protection by law enforcement. That's the only point I'm trying to make and a compelling reason for every person to do what it takes to protect himself.


  32. B.B.,

    What little I ever knew about firearms I have long forgotten in the 35 years since I last owned one. Rikib's questions about the perfect home defense weapon got me thinking. I do live in Miami after all. I think the consensus on the blog was that a .357 revolver was the best choice if I could only have one weapon. You mentioned that you really like your Ruger Blackhawk because it is so flexible in terms of the ammo it can take, right? You said it kicks with the .357 magnum ammo but is gentle with 9 mm and .38 Special. Kevin mentioned a Colt Python as his choice, I believe. I also heard Sig Sauer and Glock mentioned, but these last two are only 9 mm automatics, right? In short, if I were to get just one gun for home defense in an urban environment with kids in the house, what should it be? It should also be easy for my wife to handle. She is of average size.


  33. B.B.,

    Hope it's not too unwieldy in close quarters! You are right. I have no intentions of ever shooting a handgun for fun. For that I'll stick to my (ahem, my wife's) 2240! Any brand/model suggestions for a good, reliable 410? Thanks much for the advice.


  34. AlanL,
    One little side note, too, is that the .410 won't penetrate into your neighbors house by accident like a bullet could. The only problem I have is shotguns are hard to keep under the pillow.


  35. Kevin,
    You know which one I like — the maple with AF stain and Permalyn:). Very nice work in both cases, and it is wonderful to see something non-walnut and non-cheap in airguns:).

  36. Chuck,

    Thanks. Yes, that was one big concern. Is the spread pattern very broad on a .410? I know a shotgun means you don't have to aim too too carefully, but on the other hand I don't want too many stray balls on the outside of the pattern flying through the interior paper walls in my house.


  37. BG_Farmer,

    I would have bet money on it!

    The figure is weak but the stock fits me well. Fun gun. I'm anxious to get the other R8 back from PW. Four months and counting.


  38. AlanL,
    As you know I'm sorta looking for the same thing. I came across a article about a Mossberg HS 410 (Home Security) it sounds good but have not been able to find out much more about about it, lowest price I found was $295 but that is pistol grip I'm looking at. Hard to find but also more available in 20ga for same price.

  39. AlanL,
    I don't know what the spread pattern will be. It's going to be dependent on the distance, of course. Sounds like one of those, "Try it and see" things.

    But, let's consider this: There you are lying on the floor thinking (if you still can), "Well, the guy got the drop on me but, dang, that wallpaper still looks nice."


  40. Kevin,
    I think the figure is pretty good, it is just hard to get ultra-consistent stripe over a stock that size. I'm guessing you could have burned it more, but were most certain it would get too red:). How did the Permalyn process compare to other finishes? It looks like a good bit of protection without too much gloss. You need to do a blog on all the different ones you've tried.

  41. AlanL and Chuck;

    The pattern size with a given choke is the same with all shotguns. What changes is the amount of shot in the pattern. Also, to be most effective, you want a tight pattern for defense. Also, for "In the House", you want to stay with bird shot, 5's or smaller so you don't shoot through walls. You need to be just as accruate with a shotgun as a rifle or handgun in a defensive situation in the home where the distances are close as the pattern is small with all gauges. Where you have a larger pattern is when the distances open up as is most often the case in an outdoors situation. Here, you would probably use buckshot. Or, the the range was going to be long or you need the extra power, slugs.


  42. AlanL
    At a distance of a few feet the pattern will be so tight that you might as well be shooting a slug.
    I doubt if you would have a pattern larger than a coffee cup at any distance within your house.


  43. Fact is..
    At close range a shotgun packs a devastating amount of power, and causes massive tissue destruction as the tight pattern spreads out inside the target (game? victim?, deserving party?).

    A shotgun must be aimed to some degree even at a distance. For most squirrel and rabbit hunting, a shot under 25 yards or so would best be aimed just off the end of the nose to prevent blowing the crap out of game. Ever try to eat small game that caught nearly a full pattern??

    The front end of a 12 ga will scare the crap out of most scum.



  44. BB,
    The spring in my 124 is .128" wire diameter, .56"ID and 33 coils, spaced .617". I bought 5 of them from a fellow a while back. They may have been BSA springs, don't know for sure. They have proven to be a very useful size, lots of applications.

  45. Hi BB
    I was just wondering, can I use the pellgunoil to occassionally oil the front and rear slide of the walther cp99, as well as the magazine release level as what the umarex manual ask me to do? also, can I use mineral oil to clean the exterior of the gun after shooting to remove any hand sweat? Thanks in advance!


  46. Are the Mossberg 500 pistol grip short barrel (18.5") shotguns a quality shotgun? I see a lot of other manufacturers names and models floating around here but not the Mossberg.

  47. I'd like to jump into this self-defense shotgun issue, if I may. I have a 12 ga pump and the sound of that rack cycling is very intimidating. However, much of the information I have read warns that in high stress periods, you may not fully cycle the shotgun for that second shot, much like the Civil War soldiers who kept on re-loading their rifles, or the people who keep an unloaded firearm at home and can't get a bullet in the cyclinder or clip due to the adrenaline rush and shakes they are suffering.

    Keep that in mind before committing to a pump versus a semi.

    Now, the saga of my search for a .22 bolt action rifle continues. I should know this weekend if my buddy can swing a deal on a 541, 541T and/or a Ruger 7722!

    Any comments from the knowledge base on the Ruger?

    Oh, another one of my favorite sayings about the Police and the constitution: "when seconds count, the police are minutes away".

    Fred PRoNJ

  48. FWIW: A .410 shotgun slug has some useful field applications. They are ballistically very similar to the .45 Long Colt cowboy loads that are so popular. If you know where they hit with your gun , you will find them useful for bigger pests that hang out beyond shot shell range. My .22/.410 Savage has a Williams receiver sight and will group slugs into 4" or so to 50 yards. Robert

  49. Fred: I have experience with the Ruger In my case a .22 mag version. It is an excellent rifle with no feeding issues as it has the best (in my opinion ) magazines for .22 rifle. It also enjoys very good aftermarket support. You can change the barrel yourself with only simple hand tools. Robert

  50. Fred,
    Unless you keep your semi. chambered, won't you still have to work the bolt? I think a 12G is the perfect welcome for uninvited visitors.

    Ruger 77/22 — Probably really nice looking and tough, but may not be as accurate as possible from what I've heard/read.

    Did you check out rimfirecentral? There should be lots of 77/22 information in the Ruger/Other forum.

    PS — I just saw Roberts response. I think you would have a good selection of barrels from those made for 10/22 aftermarket.

  51. Robert,
    What you are saying about .410 slugs is something like what I've been seeing about slug guns in general, that 20G is probably better for dedicated slug gun than 12G, due to better ballistics or sectional density (can't remember what the exact argument was).

  52. BG,

    rimfire central is my next destination! Yes, you do have to cycle the bolt if you don't have a round chambered. I was referring to the second round, if needed.

    Robert, appreciate your input.

    Fred PRoNJ

  53. C'mon folks. It's 8:10 cdst posting time, and we have 230 comments to go to beat last weekends's number.

    Alan L,

    Don't forget to put a drop of pellgun oil on the nose of each 12 gram CO2 cartridge you use in your wife's pistol, or any other CO2 airgun you have.

    As an aside, I usually buy a 100 box of 12 gram cartridges, good for 3000+ shots, when I buy a bunch of pellets at the 4-for-the-price-of-3 at PA. Keep in mind that the 4th-for-free is always the lowest priced of the bunch, so sometimes you have to do some pre-configuring to get the best deal. Also, considering the weight of cartridges and pellets, I usually go for the free shipping over $150, rather than the 10% off coupon.


  54. BG-Farmer: If you are hunting big game (deer in my case) I still prefer a 12ga, despite the sectional density talk on the .20 ga. I have used all three ,12, 20 and 16 on deer, and the 12ga, in my opinion, is still the best. Lots of lead hits hard kills dead, as my Dad used to say. A bigger bullet at longer range will still carry more swat when it gets there despite a loppy trajectory. I base this on messing with many of the fancy $3 a shot slugs on the range, in a very nice Hastings heavy barreled,scoped 870. I got a flinch that took most of a year to get rid of testing slugs. Actually,the slug gun I've killed the most deer with is my beat up Marlin 120 mag pump, with a smooth bored "20 buck barrel, with a Weaver 2 1/2 power scope with post reticle for sighting equipment. It was a $75 gun show special and I mounted the scope which was very used and very cheap too. I don't use the designer slugs either anymore. Number 13 or 14 , (I can't remember) over the last nine seasons, fell to it last fall. I mention the .410 slugs only for use on woodchucks, racoons and coyotes. Every once in awhile you get a shot at one while hunting other small game and a couple slugs may come in handy. Of course you have to know where they shoot. I have to use some kentucky windage to hit with the savage/stevens. I've wondered if some of these .410 /.45 revolvers may actually shoot the .410 slugs better than the .45's. They would be closer to the rifling. Robert

  55. Hi, folks. I've got to second BG_Farmer's motion for a guest blog on stock finishing. Heck – not just a guest blog – I'm talking an extended multi-part series with contributions from the likes of Kevin, Frank B, and BG_Farmer. The stock-finishing banter over the last couple of months has been a goldmine, but you'd have to be a real ninja with the little search box to find it all now.

    As a not-so-handy guy, I'd normally be far too timid to mix gunstocks and sandpaper, but I have an ace up my sleeve. You see, I am the owner of a Discovery rifle. It's a great, fun air rifle, but that factory stock would get you flunked out of 7th grade shop class. I'd have to be on crack to make it any worse. It's confidence-inspiring!

    PS, have you seen James Linthicum's C1-style Discovery stock? Nice! https://www.americanairgunhunter.com/c1_disco.html

    PPS, if I ever do try my hand at stock refinishing, somebody remind me about the not-being-on-crack thing.

  56. JH,

    Thanks for the pellet and shipping vs. coupon tips. I've been learning to juggle that one for a while.

    Thanks for the reminder on the Pellgun oil. I bought the 40 box of cartridges and two extra Pellgun tubes for a start. We'll see how it goes. Hope I don't have to buy more CO2 too soon.

    Which is better for a padlock that lives outside in the rain: Pellgun oil or Ballistol, or something else?


  57. Volvo,

    Thanks- that's a very good looking shotgun. I have never shot a shotgun. I have no clue how to load one, clean it, maintain it or shoot it. So I have a lot of homework to do. All you guys' help is greatly appreciated.


  58. I know I'm going to p/o a lot of people here, but reading Robert's post annoyed me. Shooting deer with a shotgun is not hunting it is slaughtering, anyone can do that. Obviously you can tell I don't like hunting, or maybe you know that from other posts I've made. My brother-in-law loves to hunt and stays up in trees for hours on end, he uses a bow. I still don't like it but it does require more skill then blasting away with a shotgun. Okay, everyone can retaliate now.

  59. Mike & TwoTalon,

    Thanks for the info on the pattern. That's reassuring. Chuck's portrait of me expiring on the floor is great– but it wasn't the wallpaper I was worried about, more the kids in the other room behind it!

    But now you all have set my mind at ease about the pattern. It's nice and tight and not like a garden hose with sprayer set to wide. I should've known– B.B. wouldn't have recommended it otherwise.


    I'll have a scabbard for it right by the headboard. Close enough to the pillow I guess. My biggest worry by far is going to be keeping my curious 8-year-old's paws off it…


  60. rikib,

    I'll say this for you: You've got cojones. I respect you for speaking your mind openly, without reservations. I will enjoy what's coming your way next, on the sidelines for a change. But I will say this: You are not entirely lily-white in the hunting ethics department yourself: When you said you would indiscriminately take out any snake you saw without first asking it if it was good or bad, you violated a code of the true hunter: know your prey!


  61. Rikib,
    I assume Robert is hunting deer with a slug in his shotgun, which means it has to be aimed precisely. I don't see how that differs from using a rifle, except that the range and accuracy aren't nearly as good with the slug, so he has to get somewhat closer, making it even more of a sporting proposition.

  62. AlanL,

    "Ah, therin lies the rub…"

    How to keep a firearm yet keep it from the youngsters. Lots-o-luck.

    Don't keep it loaded, hide the ammo, load it at bedtime, unload it in the morning, AND don't forget either one. This is a selling point for a side arm because it can hidden easier and be carried on your person around the house if necessary and away from the kiddies during the day. Don't know what to say. If your neighborhood is that dangerous maybe for the kids sake you should move.

    Don't know how old your kid(S) are but firearm education as soon as possible would help. Still, they be very curious!!


  63. AlanL,
    I'm not hunting the snake, I'm protecting my dogs and cats, and strays we put food out for behind our fence. I'm saying I will kill it if I see it. I'm not going out looking for something to kill just for fun. This is going to get even more people p/o at me and maybe get banned from this blog, I don't remember where exactly that I heard this but it was basically that "Mankind is the only species that kills for sport." So let the wrath come down on me, I spoken my piece.

  64. Rikib, if mankind is the only species that kills for sport… well, it's only because mankind is the only species that does ANYTHING for sport.

    But animals do not only kill when they have to. We've had plenty of dogs over the years, and have seen enough to know that sometimes they kill when it is quite unnecessary.

    With regards to your comment about hunting: "Shooting deer with a shotgun is not hunting it is slaughtering, anyone can do that"… Obviously you've never tried it, or you would know that very often the deer gets away.

    Are you (and your animals) vegetarian? If not, do you buy meat products at a store? If you do, you are supporting the commercial slaughterhouses where wholesale animal slaughter really does takes place. In the wild a stalked animal always has a chance for survival, and a wily one has a very good chance. At a Tyson or Purdue plant, they don't have any chance at all.

    There is nothing wrong with a hunter enjoying the hunt, any more than someone might enjoy picking strawberries or fishing. They all involve killing. What's wrong is not the killing of plants or animals for food or for other good reason, but is rather doing it without any respect for the reason they exist to begin with.

  65. rikib,

    thanks for providing subject material for another record breaking weekend blog.
    Like AlanL I will be sidelining this one (for a while, anyway).

    Al, as for home protection using a .410 I don't get it. I mean a 12ga can be too much gun for some, sure, but a .410 has less than 1/2 the shot of the 12ga. Why would you use a 20ga which is nearly as powerful as the 12 with less shot than the 12, but almost twice the shot as .410? I use a 20ga because that's what I have. I have a .410 also, but use it for hunting when the challenge needs to be turned up a bit. For home defense. Get a 20ga loaded .00, .00, slug, slug, and don't worry 'bout the wallpaper, it's probably out of style and needs to be replaced anyway!

  66. rikib,

    "Shooting deer with a shotgun is not hunting it is slaughtering, anyone can do that"

    Ahem, that's spoken like someone who's never tried to hit a deer with a shotgun. Unless you're using a rifled barrel with modern sabot slugs, then shotguns have about the same effective range as a bow. Buckshot probably has even less effective range than a bow. A slug from a smooth bore barrel maintains practical accuracy out to about 50 yards or so, which puts it right there with a bow.

    "Mankind is the only species that kills for sport."

    Um, no, not really. If you don't believe me, then toss a mouse to one of your cats. Many animal species kill other animals for what might be termed sport. I don't have references handy, but IIRC, most of the primates (i.e. monkeys, gorillas, etc.) have been documented killing and raping members of their own species. My Father-In-Law lost 7 chickens in one night to a fox. All were killed, none were eaten. Most folks who keeps bird houses will at some point bear witness to the results of a European Starling or a House Sparrow attack upon one of their bird families. Bloody, and definitely not done for food or survival.

    "I'm protecting my dogs and cats"

    No offense, but snakes are generally speaking in more danger from your dogs and cats than the other way around. There are only a handful of venomous snakes in America, and of those, most dog breeds can survive their bites. I had one dog growing up that killed many a snake including cottonmouths and water moccasins. Those were the only ones that gave him much trouble, and even then, the swelling only lasted a week or so. You really should become more familiar with the various snake species and how to identify them as most of the snakes you'll see help us way more than you think.

  67. Vince,
    I said let the wrath begin. By the way we are not complete vegetarians, but even our dogs eat or vegetables than meat. They are very healthy and very active. As for commercial slaughterhouses, do you feel that if we all go out and kill our own meat they will go out of business, doubt it. The meat is there no need to kill more. I don't agree with slaughterhouses but that really has nothing to do with going out and shooting animals for fun when the meat is already in the market. Try skeet shooting.

  68. Bobby Nations,
    Well at least I got to get some movement on this blog.
    Other species are not always killing just for food I realize that, but they do protect what they consider to be their territory. Like I've said I have dogs, cats and yes even birds they don't always get along. But I doubt they wake up in the morning a think, "well I guess I'll just go kill something today".

    When you live in an area (SWGA) known to have poisonous snakes you protect your family and pets first. I live in the country with holding ponds and underbrush nearby (a great breeding ground).

  69. Rikib,

    Now you hurt my feelings, last deer I shot at with my 870 I missed. In my defense he was on a full out run. “anyone can do that” Ouch, time to go sulk.

  70. rikib,

    Not so much lively as inflammatory.

    I guess you'd rather maintain deer herds with the bumper of your car. And as for you slaughtering beneficial snakes, it is your behavior that is attracting them.

  71. rikib

    Congratulations. You went from being worried about getting in trouble with your better half, to having her help you choose among 6 different bikes in one day? You smooth talker! I think BB might have some things he wants to talk to you about.

    You have hit upon yet another hot button topic. People are going to disagree with you vehemently. Dont take it personally. Like I said before, if you take a stand around here, be ready to defend it with both fists. If I didn't know better, I might think you were just throwing these things out there to give people some fresh meat to chew on.

  72. Slinging Lead,
    My mind is always going, sorry. About the bikes, I was surprised I printout the photos (printer is next to wife's computer) she looked at them and said okay. Then she called a friend who's husband customizes harleys found out he has one for sale.

    Sorry I hurt your feelings didn't mean too.

    Get a grip. If your going to say my behavior is attracting the snakes then explain it. What by living here I attract them, sooory!

  73. To Everyone I may have offended, I'm sorry just trying to get a conversation going on what seemed a boring day. Please don't get me wrong I love guns and any type of weapon. I was a marksman as a teenager and again in the Navy. My father was a marksman in the Army, and a hunter after that. I was just throwing out an idea that came across my mind. I guess maybe I should keep my thoughts to myself so we can all get bored. Some people here would rather condemn than discuss openmindly, but to each his own. I'm just trying to say that no ill will was intended, it was meant to incite a reasonable discussion (apparently didn't work with some). I'll try hard to keep my thoughts to myself from now on, but no promises!!!

  74. Rikib,

    You need to do some homework on the subject of hunting before arguing about it here.

    Buck and ball has been a favorite deer hunting load for three centuries. Buck refers to buckshot, which is so-named because it was developed to kill bucks, I believe. Before that lead shot was teardrop-shaped and called grape shot or swan shot for reasons I will let you imagine.

    The ball part of buck and ball was a close-to-bore-sized lead ball that we later called a "punkin" ball. Anyway, buck and ball was a favorite deer hunting load.

    So down through the centuries, buckshot was recognized as the best and safest deer load when hunting near built-up areas. In Ohio in the 1960s it was the only legal deer round.

    Today, whitetail deer herds have reached record sizes in many areas. They are so large that the area cannot support them. In the state of Virginia, the state employs professional hunters shooting air rifles to quietly kill deer in state parks because the herds are too large to manage. The meat is donated to shelters and similar food programs.

    In Rapid City the deer are right in the city, killing dogs and eating the landscaping of private houses downtown. All because there are too few hunters to cope with the population.

    The best and most dangerous overpopulation is of course the boom in mountain lions in southern California. They are killing and injuring pets and children at a growing and alarming rate.

    All of this is due to poor game management laws, and misdirected public opinion. Ohio and Maryland are starting to be overrun with coyotes for the same reason, and Dallas-Ft. Worth is in crisis because of the wild pigs.

    When God completed creation He gave mankind dominion over the Earth and all that is upon it. That includes the animals. He didn't tell us to mock them, to torture them or to make fools of ourselves. He told us to be in charge.

    Hunting with a shotgun isn't slaughter. Allowing elk to be hit by SUVs because they don't know how to cross the road to get to their feeding grounds is slaughter. But we'll still build Route 8 without a thought to the migration patterns of the herd.

    You don't have to hunt. I don't hunt much anymore.

    But as long as I wear leather shoes or a leather belt I will for sure keep my opinions to myself to about hunting.


  75. rikib,
    In some states, mine included (Ohio), we cannot use rifles for deer hunting due to the great distances that a centerfire can travel, We're restricted by law to using a shotgun which has a shorter effective range and is thus deemed to be "safer". No one hunts deer with shot. They're hunted using slugs and it's rare to hear of anyone shooting one further than 100 yards successfully. Our deer population has increased dramatically over the last decades and continues to swell despite having 230,000 taken by hunters. Lack of natural predators–except Pontiacs and Buicks, fewer hunters, and the inability of game management to control herd sizes due to increasing anti-hunting folks. We currently have well over 40,000 car/deer collisions in Ohio alone every year . The number continues to climb, yet the deer population grows faster. Consider also that hunter tag fees put several million dollars into the states' wildlife coffers yearly and many outdoor programs that benefit everyone–non-hunters included. The small town I work in has a population of about 2400 and averages one deer collision per day. I'm also lucky enough to work within the only national park in Ohio, yet I've never met a single ranger who was opposed to hunting deer. They have all been of the opinion that we need more population checks on them. All this is basically to give you some things to consider. And like you, I'm also not a deer hunter. I think that we have an obligation to manage game and we have an even greater duty to allow each other do things we may not always agree with.

  76. BB,
    Coyotes are a hot topic in the Cuyahoga Valley National Park in Ohio. We had maybe a handful 10 years ago. People called you a liar if you claimed to have even seen one. Now, we've got hundreds of them and they've overgrown the park boundaries. My parents have them in their backyard in Stow. Hudson and Boston township have increasing numbers of pets being killed. There's pressure on the park to check their population yet anti hunters on the other side actively working against it. I now see coyotes almost daily on my commute to and from work.

    On any given day, I can also see anywhere from 3 to 60+ deer on a stretch of 3 miles of road through the park.

  77. Rikib : Read Orteaga Gasset's "Meditations on Hunting" you might learn something about the natural world and the hunters place in it. Another is the movie "In the Blood ", if you'd rather watch something instead. I eat the deer I shoot and I've raised beef cattle and hogs, and have slaughtered them myself. Until you've done that you really don't have an appreciation of where your place is on the food chain, or the difference between hunting and processing food. Gasset said" we kill to have hunted, we do not hunt to kill" . That about sums it up for me. I do miss and have hunted many things and I do not always succeed. It is definately not slaughtering.Learn the difference. Robert

  78. Rikib,

    You did not select a topic for discussion.

    What you did was to declare an entire set of socially acceptable behaviors and the belief sytem around them as wrong and reprehensible – behaviors that are actually encouraged some in authority, discouraged by those in the dark.

    That may not have been your intent, but it clearly was your action.

    A discussion would have been started by asking something like "why do people hunt dear with slugs?", not saying such actions are wrong as you did.

    I believe you were wrong to type what you did, and will leave it at that.

    Alan in MI

  79. Rikb, if there is a moral objection to killing during a hunt then the same objection applies (and perhaps even more so) to commercial meat processing. A deer in the field has no more intrinsic right to live than a cow in a domestic herd. As a matter of fact, neither one really has any 'rights' at all, other than to fulfill their intended purposes. One of which is food.

    Your arguments are similar to those used by organizations like PETA, except I don't think you're following them to their logical conclusions. In all honesty, you're not being consistent.

    Why, then, do you eat meat? Is it out of necessity? Or is it because you enjoy meat? In all certainty it is the latter, and PETA and militant vegetarians will gladly (and correctly) point out to you that there's no substantive difference between buying a burger and nailing a rabbit. And if you're willing to support and perpetuate one, it is no different from the other.

    Of all the joys of hunting (the challenge, the time with nature, the camaraderie with other hunters, etc), I don't think you'll find that any significant numbers of them go at it specifically for the pleasure of causing pain to another creature. And of those that do, you'll find that most hunters try to avoid that type. You'll find that most hunters – including the ones here – much prefer either the quick, clean kill or a complete miss.

    Please remember that nobody is calling you names, they are merely responding to your statements. Unfortunately they are not entirely true or are misleading (so easy anyone can do it), and that hunters are 'shooting animals for fun', which is a misrepresentation of the motivations of those on this

  80. I have to second what GenghisJan said about what BG_Farmer said. A long, multipart guest blog on gun stock refinishing would be one(s) that readers would refer back to over and over again. It would also likely direct quite a few folks here from the search engines. Ones that have never heard of Pyramyd AIR before. A collaboration would be ideal, as Jan said. I estimate each one would generate at least 1.3 gazillion comments.

    As Jan eluded to, the wonderful search box on the right can be very helpful. But she can also be a very cruel mistress. I once read a blog that BB wrote, and the next day wanted to reread part of it. It was no longer in my history, so I entered the EXACT title of the blog into the search box. Sure enough, it popped right up. AT THE BOTTOM OF PAGE 6. What in the freaking heck, man?! Dang blasted thing, wasting my time…

    WV: jameter. An instrument for measuring Smuckers or Welshes.

  81. GenghisJan

    Like you, I have a Discovery with a butt-ugly stock screwed to it, finished in burnt-umber crayola. Unlike you, I have 100% total confidence in my ability to screw it up, no crack required. More than anything, I dread working my way through $60 worth of sandpaper and various oils only to have to start over again.

    Thanks for the link to the custom Disco stock. I presume you have seen these from Tim Meredith? Gorgeous. It looks very close to the proportions to the stock on the TX200.

  82. rikib,

    I seriously doubt that you will be banned for expressing your opinions last night.

    This will be my last comment to you.

    Your stated beliefs and passionately expressed opinions are in direct conflict with your actions and in some cases common sense.

    It's a waste of my time to converse with any and all uninformed hypocrite's since they can change their stance when it's convenient.

    Best wishes for you.


  83. BB,

    You're right about the mountain lion here in So Cal. It is a protected animal and the numbers continue to climb. Same thing with ground squirrels, cant shoot 'em. Maybe the ground squirrel is too close a specie to those in office here. I swear if you look at a squirrels' face there is a strong resemblance to both our Senators. Not much difference in gray matter either!

    On the bright side, the coyote is open season as well as pigs, so long as we don't use lead.

  84. Slinging Lead,

    Just a suggestion – I've experieinced that problem if I don't hit "back" to go back to the search box in the blog.

    When you search from the blog search box, the results are limited exclusively to the contents of the blog. But if you modify your search on the results page and resubmit it there, Google searches the whole web. And with their filters, blog results drop way down the list.

    Alan in MI

  85. Kevin,

    One from me and one from you. Here's two more you might enjoy:

    When somebody once mentioned to Twain how hard it was to quit smoking, he replied, "Oh, quitting smoking's easy, I do it every day."

    A fan of his writings once wrote to him, "Did you know, Mr. Clemens, that "sugar" is the only word in the English language that starts with an "s" alone but is pronounced with the "sh" sound?" Mark Twain cabled back a single word reply: "Sure!"

    And those are the only two words in English that start with an 's' but have an 'sh' sound.

    Neat, ain't it?


  86. Searching the Pyramyd AIR blog

    The most effective way I've found to search the entire blog is by using google.com. Once on the google site if you look on the right side of their search box you will see the words "Advanced Search" underscored. Click on Advanced Search.

    That will bring up a page that gives you several search options including, "all these words", "this exact wording or phrase", "one or more of these words", etc. I usually use the “all these words” option.

    The key to using the google Advanced Search is to enter the address
    /blog// (without quotations of course) into the box identified by “Search within a site or domain”.

    Works well for me since it almost always yields more results than just using the search box on the blog page.


  87. I have noticed that the results when using the search box on the blog page invariably seem to leave out the last seven or eight days of blog entries. I usually use the "sort by date" option at the top right of the page, since I'm usually looking for the most recent hits first. Otherwise, google sorts by "relevance" by who knows what criteria that makes no sense to me. Very often I still can't find what I'm looking for.

    Kevin's approach can only be better. Can't wait to try it.


  88. Kevin

    I always thought that putting the + between each word did the same thing as "search all these words." Perhaps it wasn't doing it the same, perhaps it was, but organizing them in the same random way google does sometimes. Tom or Edith related a similar experience in a blog comment once.

    Your way is clearly the way to go from here on out. Thanks for the tip. Also, I appreciate your mention of Andres Segovia, whom I was made to listen to when I was too young to appreciate him. I had completely forgotten.

  89. So much like when I was a kid with the Sears Wishbook, I am dreaming over the latest GM sale flyer. I see the Micro Desert Eagle, but lament that the price is more than I had hoped. I study each page as if an important exam will be given on the material. I am surprised that a new Ruger .38 special is the exact price of the Smith and Wesson.

    And then I see the Heritage Rough Rider .22 LR / .22 WMR at $199, half of what I paid for my Single Six. Such a low price brings concerns and raises an eyebrow, but the big question is after Cocobolo grips in the description it says not for sale in MN, IL, SC or HI. What gives? Who decided that a SA .22 is too dangerous? Or is it the Cocobolo wood?


  90. To those wanting advice on caliber for a home defense gun?,

    If you only have the money for one, a pistol is not your best choice. A small gauge shotgun is. For most men a 20 gauge shortened "tactical" pump is best.

    For some women I might recommend a 410 shortened "tactical" pump with large shot.

    Now if you simply must have a pistol then this is what I think.

    The FBI choose the .40 cal as the best. Imho you can't go wrong with that or a .45 acp.

    I know there are those who say no to a semi automatic, but a good quality gun with good quality factory ammo you have proved in the gun simply will not let you down.

    I have two .45 acp"s for home defense and every thing else you can use one for. One is a Springfield Armory Trophy Match worked over by a gunsmith. It is totally reliable and extremely accurate. It cost upwards of $1300. The other is a Bersa "Thunder" subcompact which I paid all of $329 for used. It needed no gunsmith intervention and is totally reliable. Accuracy is not as good as the Trophy Match, but at combat ranges (up to 15 ft) it is "minute of heart" accurate. Meaning 5 shots rapid fire at that range or less would all end up in the heart or between the eyes area. The Trophy Match is .5 "minute of heart" accuracy, but the felon would not even know the difference.

    By proved I mean you have 500 rounds through it with no jams or other problems.

    What you say? You can't afford to shoot 500 rounds in practice? Then don't get a pistol. Get a shotgun.

    If you are going to use a pistol for self defense you must practice. Period. Period. Period.

    With a shotgun you can get by with much less practice. And the shotgun should be a pump. Period. Period. Period.

    While at short distances it may not matter, I would prefer to see you use #2 or larger shot. Also the choke should be cylinder bore.

    Finally, keep your guns clean and ready for action.

    One last thing…if you do not think you can pull the trigger then don't even get a gun. It will only get you killed.

    Just my 2 cents.

  91. Slinging Lead,

    The search box on blogger isn't consistent, especially lately. I think the blogger software is taking illicit drugs.

    I've gotten different results using the blogger search box when putting comma's between words vs. putting plus signs. I don't know what the difference is to blogger but believe it depends on the softwares mood.

    I'm off to the gunshow.


  92. For those of you who are recommending a shotgun for home defense, I need help with this scenario: I awake in the middle of the night and there is a stranger standing in the doorway of my bedroom… Where's my shotgun?

    I consider home defense to be quick response defense. Am I going to have time to respond with a shotgun?

    Too many time I've read in the newspaper where someone has said, "I was awakened in the middle of the night by someone in my room…"
    or "Someone entered my house through the bedroom window and was standing over my bed…" A shotgun would be useless for these cases. A handgun under the pillow – priceless!

    Can my wife fire a shotgun from the hip more than once or will it be on the floor after the first recoil? (maybe a case against the 12 gauge)

    Maybe these are scenarios for the "Judge" – .45/.410 any thoughts?


  93. pcp4me,

    CJr raises very cogent points. The handiness of a handgun over a shotgun is really advantageous. On the other hand, "practice, practice, practice" isn't.

    But let's assume Pump Shotgun it is. B.B. said as much, and though it irritates him mightily for people to say it, "his word is the law!" 😉


    I really like that Stoeger coach gun you showed me. I particularly like the one in the default picture in nickel and black, but unfortunately that configuration is not offered in .410 gauge.

    They say the following: "Also a potent home security gun, the Coach Gun is chambered for 2-3/4” and 3” shells in 12-gauge, 20-gauge, and .410 bore." I suppose the 2.75" shell is the "weaker" ammo? Which one is right for my needs (close quarters at home)?

    They also mention "Trigger: Double Chokes: IC & M fixed" What does that mean? What is the double trigger used for, one for each barrel? I guess that lever at the top moves either the left or right trigger forward? Gawd, I feel so ignorant! The only shotguns offered with the single trigger option are the .20 and .12 gauge options, not the .410. I wonder why.


    You suggested the Mossberg or pump Remington 500. Are these better choices than the Stoeger Coach gun?


  94. AlanL,
    I looked in the GM flyer I got for the Coach Gun but didn't see one. I assume this is what you were referring to. That lever on top is for popping open the barrel. The Coach gun is a double barreled shotgun. There is a trigger for each barrel, I believe, hence the two trigger mention. I don't like that configuration for home defense because it only gives you two shots before the perp is on your a**.

    I would want a pump that gives you more chances to win the prize. It needs to be as short as legally possible for maneuverability and as safe as possible which is why I would rule out automatic.

  95. AlanL,
    A pump is actually considered more effective because of the number shots it holds. Only a fool would approach with a Remington 870 pointed in their direction. The side by side however brings a cool factor to the game. Even the Germans felt the shotgun was too cruel a weapon to be legal for warfare. M means modified choke, IC is improved cylinder.

    As far as being awoke in your room, the answer is a dog; they naturally embrace the role with little training. Based on the neighborhood I have lived in I have always kept anywhere from one to three. Once you are awaked you will need a flash light along with your weapon of choice. Any novice can point a shotgun and do ok at indoor distances, a pistol requires hours of practice as someone noted. Just be mindful of the long barrel.

  96. AlanL,
    I've never cocked a pump shotgun so I don't know how hard it is to do that or if women would be able to because the women I know have a very difficult time racking a .32 pistol I own. I wonder if racking that first shell of an automatic shotgun would be hard for them, also. You certainly wouldn't want to store one already cocked even with the safety on I wouldn't think.


  97. CJr,

    Racking the slide on a pump shotgun is not difficult and makes one of the most frightening noises you can imagine.

    One the other hand a double barrel enables you to give them both barrels as fast as an auto. Perhaps a load of number 4’s to the face and then buckshot to the torso? That would ruin anyone’s day.

    Certainly with multiple assailants the pump is back on top.

  98. Volvo,
    The rough rider SA is available in two different frame materials, alloy and steel, because some states don't allow non-steel frames to be sold. I've looked at it as a good way for me to play around with a pistol and possibly scare possums away and the reviews look pretty good. The steel frame is a small premium, but probably worth it if it will get used heavily, or so I determined.

  99. AlanL.,
    23/4 inch shotgun shells are standard size. 3" are "magnum" and 31/2 are "super magnum". I've rarely seen the need for even 3", but it is a nice option to have for some non-toxic hunting loads when required or desired. Most people can live very happily w/o 31/2" option. If you need it, you already know it, or have a 10G.

  100. Thanks Bg Farmer,

    I thought maybe the origin of the wood was the reason.

    I know I have mentioned numerous times I enjoy the Single Six which appears similar. On a sad note, I just tried on the holster belt today and it appears to have shrunk as I can no longer buckle it.

    Wish it was from Walmart as I could still exchange it. : )

  101. CJr,
    That was the idea, I beleive, when steel loads came out, but better substitute shot (heavier than steel) and more 10G options make it less of a necessity for that, from what I've read.

  102. Guys, thanks. I think the pump it is. Why limit myself to just two shells before reloading? The philosophy here is "if already, then already." A 2-3/4" pump then. Now for another question: Are shotguns typically welcome at ranges for practice, or are they frowned upon?

    Thanks again to all for the great education.


  103. AlanL,
    At the outdoor range where I shoot they have 7 stations built throughout the woods. Only one of those stations allow shotguns. That station is approx 175yds max and has a primitive clay launcher. Other firearms may be used there, also.

  104. There is one advantge to the the double barrel hammer gun. It can be kept loaded and ready to go for years since there are not any compressed springs to give out. As to reloading it, Cowboy Action Shooters can approach the speed of a pump gun when it is used by the "average" person. As with most things, there is good and bad.


  105. Mike,
    You are correct that both platforms have their merits, just like with the different gauges. I’ve watched a new shooter take two steps back and almost fall after shooting a 12 gauge with a slug, but .410 is not going to move or throw anybody off target. Also muzzle blast could be an issue in darkness. Too much too really cover in this forum, but as with many things, starting off small and simple is not a bad idea.

  106. I can't see how one can argue with population management–of deer especially–as an argument in favor of hunting. The alternative is having the deer starve to death over time or come to some other gruesome end like getting hit by a car. There's no question to me of which is more humane. And if there are some sadistic, wasteful hunters out there, there is no reason to judge the activity by a few aberrations. The donation of venison to shelters is also a great idea. The word is that venison is extremely nutritious and goes a long way towards helping the hungry. Shelter managers love these donations.

    As for the scenario of waking up with someone standing over you, I think that better than selecting the best firearm for that situation is the old self-defense adage of anticipating. You need to push out the warning system. There are fairly cheap alarms that can be installed on windows as well as motion sensors in the house that are no trouble at all, and they can make it very difficult for an intruder to avoid detection. The guy would almost have to be Jason Bourne in which case, you're probably up the creek anyway.

    I have been attracted to strobe flashlights. As Nathan Bedford Forrest said, "Hit 'em firstest with the mostest." However, I suspect this would interfere with your own vision as well as the opponent's. Into the breech, comes point shooting. You don't aim with the sights but with your hold body. Look at the target, extend your gun hand and raise it like a pump handle, as soon as the gun breaks the line of vision with the target, convulsively squeeze the gun with the whole hand. Never mind about the refined trigger squeeze. This works great with my Walther CPSport and my point shooting groups have improved noticeably. And it's great fun.

    Practice won't hurt. However, according to Rex Applegate and W.E. Fairbairne (creator of the famous commando knife), the practice you get at the shooting range has little or no application to combat shooting which, based on statistics, is sudden, within 20 feet and generally in low light conditions. Applegate has seen innumerable instances of Weaver positions and other competitive techniques collapsing in real-world training scenarios.

    Trouble is, there are very few ranges which will let you practice real point-shooting and none that I have heard of that will let you practice draws from the holster. Back we go to airguns! Elmer Keith says that what works on small calibers like .22 rimfire will work pretty much the same for large calibers.

    Or, for those home invasions, you might consider a bit of strategy from the movies. In the film, Jagged Edge, a woman learns that a murderer is coming to her house with all possible speed. Cut to the murderer smashing his way through the window. He finds her in bed lying under the sheets softly illuminated by the night light. Words are exchanged. He grabs hold of her ankle to haul her out of bed and boom the bullet from her hidden handgun sends him flying back into the wall. The guy behind me said, "Empty it!" which she then proceeded to do.


  107. Mike,
    You had me bigtime LOL on the Cowboy Action Shots reload! I pictured me, in my previous scenario, jumping out of bed in my underwear, firing the two chambered shots then searching around in my crotch for the reloads. "HONEY, I'm out! Check your pants! What? No, I said 12 gauge not 12 gram cartridges!"


  108. CJr,

    I grew up cursed by both a single shot Stevens .22 and a Winchester 37A 20 gauge, or so I thought. Now add break barrel airguns and one shot one kill becomes a way of life. No spray and pray here, magazines are just a handy way to carry spare ammo.

    I think the coach gun gives the bad guys a sporting chance.

    But if you really feel the need for insurance, they make ammo holders that slip on the stock.

  109. Volvo,
    My belts fit on the last hole from approx. June-Nov., then my hibernation weight kicks in:). If I buy a Rough Rider in the warm season (very tempting if you get one also — BB already has one of the big boys, in .45LC I think), I'll have to make sure to allow for extra material on the holster belt:).

  110. Bg farmer,
    In the last year and a half I’ve been like a bear getting ready for winter. I didn’t know you could get the Rough Rider in 45LC, if it is a similar price I’d have to bite. Now as far as the leather I might need to sew a couple together.

  111. Matt61

    Jagged Edge is an excellent film. One of those edge-of-your-seat-thrillers that is worth a rent. If you can possibly imagine this, I got extra credit in civics class in high school for going to see that movie for some obscure reason. I didn't complain then, but now I'm outraged. I also had a history class wherein we were made to study all the first's George Washington was able to accomplish as president. George Washington was the first president. He was the first to take a dump as president. Her points were moot. Ah, public school. I can hardly wait for the government to take over the health care system, it makes me feel all warm inside.

    Surely you knew that being bare-chested was a prerequisite for being a Starship Captain. You knew about the Sinclair Molecule Chain, but didn't know that? Get it together man.;^)

    Random Facts: First President of the Continental Congress?
    Peyton Randolph. Samuel Huntington was first President during the Articles of Confederation. Presidents of the Continental Congress had no executive power however, and the office bore little resemblance the the current title under the Constitution.

    Keep Sharpening

    WV: blistre. Don't get a blistre sharpening your knives.

  112. AlanL

    A good tactical flashlight is indispensable. Check out this article BB wrote entitled
    Tactical flashlights and some other light stuff.
    Very informative, and HILARIOUS.

    You can spend alot of money on these things, so I think its right up your alley.

    My current favorite is the Fenix TK40 which is 630 LUMENS on turbo, has 4 different light levels, has strobe and SOS functions,
    and operates on 8 easily available AA alkaline cells. Lithium-cell batteries will last longer in the flashlight and in the drawer, but are much more
    expensive and difficult to obtain. Think hurricane survival.

    Fenix TK40

    A good starter tactical LED flashlight is the Coleman MAX flashlight available from wallyworld.
    It is 180 lumens, uses either 3 AAAs or 2AAs, or 2 of some freaky camera battery that I would stay away from. They cost about $25, and use a CREE LED lamp.


  113. Mike,

    From all I've heard, I've pretty much made up my mind on a pump 410. Reasons: I will never keep the gun loaded all the time, and I need to have more than two shots. Home invasions in Miami typically feature 4 or 5 assailants. Burglaries one or two. I am clumsy normally, and will be a complete klutz in a stressful situation. I would drop the shells, trip over them like banana peels and be so ferfuddled I'd hand the gun to the bad guy and say, "here, shoot yourself!" Oh, and the flashlight? How does that thing turn on again?? I did learn once that you never point a light at an intruder from in front of yourself, but always hold it out to the side, since if he shoots immediately at the light you give yourself a chance.

    I do live in a decent neighborhood, have a dog, no cats (sorry Edith!) and a very good alarm system. But that's all I'll say about them, or I will find myself tossing salt over my left shoulder, crossing my toes and whatnot.

    I also keep outside lights on at night that let enough light filter into the house at night that I can see what's going on. In the event of a power cut, my automatic generator cuts on within 3 seconds. (This was a luxury I gave myself after Hurricanes Andrew, Wilma, Katrina and two others that finally left me fed up with Florida Power & Light's recovery speed.)

    With kids in the house (who do occasionally roam at night) I will never shoot blindly. Yet I can't see juggling a tactical light and a shotgun simultaneously in a stressful situation. (B.B., you've got it easier: You can wield the light while crackshot Edith makes short work of your esteemed visitors!)

    So that's where I am at the moment. I have finally decided to upgrade from my trusty machete and baseball bat to something more serious, but the logistics of balancing instant readiness with the safe handling of it on a daily basis do pose very significant challenges that require much thought.

    Thanks again to all for your input.


  114. What I forgot to mention is that I am crazy about flashlights and own ten, and always carry one on me such as this one, but they're Pelican lights and none of them is a tactical light. After reading B.B.'s blog post (thank you Slinging Lead) I am illuminated as to the other possibilities of a good tactical light. Only a schmuck wouldn't have one. Fenix here I come!


  115. Anonymous Judge,
    I don't have one but a friend of mine does and I have shot it. It shoots .410 just fine. Sure, it kicks but you can handle it. He loads his .410/.45/.410/.45/.410/.45. If the first .410 doesn't discourage the perp the next shot, the .45 drops him. If he's too drug crazed to feel that the next two shots will solve his problem.


  116. AlanL,

    Most important is that you have confidence in your choice. I guess I was not clear you were planning on taking on 4 or 5 guys with the weapon. Now you have me thinking 30 round magazines, or at least you may want to hang on to that machete and pick up some Kevlar PJ’s too.

  117. I have not been ignoring comments concerning my posts from yesterday. Just had a busy day. Many people got uptight, but I think that a lot of good information was provided. Not only to me, but to others. I do not hate hunters let that be known (there are several in my family). So I've excepted the criticism, as I may have spoke out of turn while trying to illicit a conversation. Sorry.

  118. AlanL,
    I know that no one wants my opinion here, but I having been looking into a lot of home defense shotguns. One that I am considering is a Mossgberg 500 Pump Action Cruiser. It is avail in 410 but more so in 20ga. It is 6 shot, 18.5" barrel and pistol grip so is much shorter than standard shotgun. Prices I have found on the net are about $300. I have not seen it in person, that is what I'm waiting to do before I buy one. I've asked on this blog about personal experiences but got no responses so I guess there is none. Well, don't know if any of this will help or not.

  119. Kevin,those are some fine pics of even finer gals….how did they do during your little shooting interval?Right now I am making progress with both walnut tyro stocks.One interesting thing I found out during a test fit w/ the FWB 300 action is that if the screw behind the trigger that anchors the action is tight,the trigger ceases to operate!!!Boy was I panicked there for a minuite!I am tuning the cheekpiece to fit me exactly,kinda like they do with a safari rifle.I had a friend with a machine shop turn a piece of alu. barstock to 1" and bore a .015 hole in the center…..put it in the scope rings, shoulder the stock and trim the cheekpiece until it is a straight line from my eye down thru the hole!This part went well and was very rewarding!Back to sanding again…Frank

  120. As long as we are talking about shotguns, might as well mention the Auto Assault-12 or AA-12 fully automatic shotgun. As you may have guessed it is 12 gauge. It shoots a reported 300 rounds per minute on full auto(though mine only does 280;^) It shoots shotshells, slugs and FRAG grenades. I think it's just the thing for home defense or digging trenches. Don't be the last on your block to pick one up.

    Read the article at defensereview.com here

    See it on YouTube as featured on Futureweapons here

  121. AlanL; BB is right, take a class.
    Also, you can get a flashlight mount for the shotgun.

    You will need to practice your equipment to use it under stress.
    It takes 700 to 1000 reps. to make it a reflex meaning you don't have to stop and think what you have to do.


  122. Frank B

    I looked into the Gamo shotgun, but it seems to be incompatible with the FRAG-12 high explosive fragmenting antipersonnel grenades, and the FRAG-12 high explosive armor-piercing rounds. Huge disappointment. On the plus side, the trigger explodes, if you try to take it apart to tune it.

    I don't suppose you read the current conspiracy brewing about making you, Kevin and BG_Farmer write a guest blog on stock refinishing? Waddaya think? Please? Don't blame me, it was BG's idea in the first place.

    P.S. Get back to work, I wanna see those stocks!;^)

    WV: wormo. Didn't he fight Godzilla?

  123. Matt,

    I hunted deer in Germany for two years. Before I was allowed to buy my license, I took a class in which I learned the life cycles of all the game animals I would be hunting. I learned how to differentiate between male and female animals. There was a special German vocabulary we had to learn that non-hunting Germans don't even know.

    Then we were tested on all of this, and it wasn't a gimme.

    Then we went to a rifle range and had to place five of six rounds inside an 8-inch bull at 100 yards offhand supported. Miss and no pass.

    Then I went down to the German office in town and paid my fee for my lifetime hunting license. It has to be renewed every year, but it is still valid 35 years later.

    Then I went shopping for the custom clothing that is not mandatory, but highly recommended if you ever want to get invited to hunt anywhere.

    In the two years I hunted in Germany there was only one accident. A French hunter sound-shot (shot at movement in a bush) and killed another hunter. Oh, the hunting season for roe deer in Germany runs from May 15 through December 31, which is quite a bit longer than anywhere in the United States. That's because there are more deer to hunt.

    And THAT is because the Germans use HUNTING as an effective game management system. It costs a German about $2,000 to get a hunting license, so they treasure it. Maybe it costs even more today, I am remembering from 35 years ago.

    Yes, hunting is the most successful game management system in the world. It has been proven so repeatedly. Do a little research on the subject and you will see what I'm talking about.


  124. This came in from the Blogger account that I never answer:

    Trying to Reach Tom Gaylord. I have a Question About an air Rifle I have Found about 2 years ago. Its a Benjamin Franklin Model 342 cal 22 Still works Fine and its in pretty good shape. alittle worn on the stock. My question to Tom is how rare is this Rifle? And what would it be worth in todays World? Any Info on this would be Great. My Name is Jos'e Cervera From Alaska.


    A working 342 is worth at least $100-125. It is not rare at all.


  125. Everyone interested in a defense shotgun,

    I should have posted this before. Taurus is bringing out a Judge carbine this year called the Circuit Judge. It is a rifle-sized Judge.

    I will include a photo in Monday's blog.


  126. BB

    I don't mean to be a pest, but your post to Matt left me with lots of questions.

    1. You mentioned $2000 for a license (35 years ago.) Any difference in price for Germans/Non-Germans? It must cost an even larger fortune now. (Any Germans who read this please let us know.)

    2. Any cost associated with the yearly renewal of the license?

    3. Custom clothing seems to be a given to be accepted in many places anywhere nowadays. Anything different/special/weird about German hunting apparel as opposed to the American counterparts?

    4. I bet you hit 6 out of 6, didn't you?

    5. To the casual observer, a $2000 fee for a hunting license in a foreign country in which you were temporarily stationed would seem an extravagant expense. Uh, I don't know if there is a question here, but there must be.

    I agree with your stance about hunting, even though I don't do it much myself. To me, it is exceedingly boring and extraordinarily difficult. Homo Sapiens have been hunting for hundreds of thousands of years. Why stop now? Many Americans are not able to afford to eat meat regularly unless they go get it themselves. Hunting the herd benefits the herd in many ways, whether people want to believe it or not.

    We may be nothing more than great apes, but there are many animals that kill for play, practice, malice/aggression, or the mere joy of the kill. It is my guess that we are the only species in the animal kingdom that feels bad about it afterward.

  127. Slinging Lead,

    The average cost for a German to obtain a hunting license in 1973 was 4,000 D-marks. That was less than $2,000, but they had additional expenses that we Americans didn't have. I paid less than $100 for my license, which was a negotiated part of the Status of Forces Agreement between Germany and the United States.

    I forget the annual cost of renewal, but it must have been about $35 or so.

    I wore a Loden green hunting shirt and tie on formal drive hunts. I also wore a Loden Jacket, which was more or less manditory. I wore a Loden hat and we were required by law to carry hunting knives and binoculars. I carried a pair of U.S. Army binos for a while, because I was a company commander and owned several dozen of them, but eventually I bought a pair of 8 X 56 glasses that I still own.

    German hunters dress in loden green with brown leather trim. The jackets can cost $1,500, but mine was a modest $250 in 1973. I shopped at Frankonia Jagdt in Wurtzberg, where all the hunters in northern Bavaria shopped.

    Yes, I did get 6 of 6 in the circle. I was expected to. Everyone else did, too.

    I shot 13 deer in 18 months and got my fill of hunting for a liftetime. The meat, which belongs to the owner of the hunting rights and not the shooter, was given to a German gasthaus in Nuremberg that specialized in wild game. I got to hunt so much because I shot a .222 Remington and ruined very little meat.

    I was asked to shoot a corkscrew buck as my final animal in Germany. That is a buck with one or both horns grown in a corkscrew pattern that is an abnormality. My trophy was displayed at the 1974 hunting festival in Nuremberg and is still on display at the gasthaus, as far as I know.

    The thing that is interesting about hunting in Germany is you are asked to shoot certain animals. The Jaeger tells you where to sit (all deer hunting is done from a high seat) and what animal to shoot. You never go hunting without the knowledge and permission of the Jaeger. I got to where I would hunt two of three times every weekend, but always with his knowledge and permission.

    German hunters greet one another with "Weidmann's Heil!" and the return is "Weidmann's Dank!" On drive hunts, 10-20 hunters and 20 drivers sweep through a wooded area looking for hausen (20-pound hares that look as large as roe deer though the binoculars) and pheasants. All shooting is done with shotguns and there is a formal range fan for every shooter. Injuries are unheard of.

    I was invited on a boar hunt but my time in Germany ended before the hunt, so I missed out.To this day I still have the German hunting practices in my head. I have looked over hundreds of deer and never shot because they weren't the ones I was supposed to kill. I never wounded an animal, and only once did a deer require a second shot.

    I also shot two cats, because they were in the field more than 100 yards from a structure. They are considered to be hunting game when that happens. Dogs are shot beyond 200 yards. Buzzards are shot on sight as are foxes. I shot two of each. Foxes spread rabies, which is why they cannot be permitted to live.


  128. B.B.,

    In the country I grew up in, buzzards (while not protected by law- Nothing is protected there) were protected by cultural tradition as beneficial to the environment because they quickly disposed of carrion and thus prevented the spread of disease. I thought this was an almost universal tradition everywhere, since there can be no benefit from shooting a carrion eater. Humans will rarely eat one anywhere, I believe. So I was very surprised to read that in southern Germany they are shot on sight. Why?

    My brother-in-law, who still lives in that country is an inveterate hunter and fisherman. It is his passion, but he has never taken me along because I am too inexperienced for him to bother to teach. He hunts with a 7mm rifle, but I do not know what it is. I do know he replaced the barrel with something he customized himself, and he spends hours assembling each cartridge himself, weighing down to the last grain each bullet and so forth. Then he goes out for three or four days at a time with but A SINGLE 7 mm bullet of his creation in his pocket. He also carries a handgun for self defense and a .22 rifle for small game (usually rabbits and large iguanas.) His motto is that if he can't bring down his quarry with a single shot then he has failed. To make sure that he doesn't, he will sometimes stalk his chosen quarry for days before he takes his shot. It's his religion to eat everything that he shoots. Thus, he will Never shoot anything that he does not intend either himself or his family to eat. Once he only injured his target (a large deer) and then tracked it for an entire 8 hours through the bush to finish it off at close quarters with his pistol. He was beside himself for days over this. He will never abandon an injured animal in the field. His biggest headache, when he goes deep into the field is how to bring out his catch. He has an old Toyota FJ-40 outfitted to the nines and always has at least two companions along for help and emergencies, and typically hunts where he can find and borrow burros or an ox when needed. He comes home covered with brambles and ticks but with the biggest smile of satisfaction on his face that I ever saw. I don't think I've ever known anyone who derives such joy from his chosen hobby of hunting, and he approaches it with a zeal and perfectionism that I think is beyond anal, even for me. But oh when I enjoy the roast iguanas over an open fire and his deer steaks and wild boar, I have to admit, he squeezes the ultimate drop of enjoyment out of every moment in life.


  129. AlanL,

    A tactical type 410 bore shotty will work well provide you are familiar with it. The Mossberg 500's are great and economical. My two sons each have one in 12ga. Like many have said here, you will need to practice the home defense, close range scenario. Take a course, it's worth more than the price of admission! I spent 8 years in the Marine Corps and 15 years after I took a home defense course and learned A LOT! It's 12 years later and I'm considering taking another course with my 30 yr old daughter. Like you she is seriously seeking HD info. After reading the many responses here I am reconsidering the choice of a .40cal handgun. The shotgun for a one gun defense IS best and the .410 may be the answer to her recoil objection to the 20ga. A 12ga was out of the question for her.

    My wife and I sleep with the windows open during the warmer 1/2 of the year. I keep my 20ga. dove and quail killer loaded with larger shot and slugs near my bed and a .45 at the headboard.

    BB, looking forward to that picture of the Taurus in Monday's post. The pistol is on the "can't have" list in California. It's the only hand gun that I would consider using over my trusty 1911.
    I would like to see a similar training course here in U.S. Seems there is a lack of respect and care in the recent crop of hunters these days.

  130. Slinginglead,

    Love that 12ga. you recommended. I've been thinking I could use that, as I am going to replace my sprinkler lines in the front yard and need to dig some trenches!

    w/v: antic. isn't that what I'm up to?

  131. rikib,

    What does "sooory!" mean?

    When you place dog food outside of your fence, it attracts small animals in addition to the strays. Those animals are the primary prey of a lot of snakes.

    You're getting a shotgun for home defense? That means that you think that it's okay to shoot a person with a shotgun, but not a deer?

    When I click on your comments, they collapse and go away. I think that I will try that from now on.

  132. My 2-cents.
    You can not have a meaningful debate on:
    religion with an atheist
    gun safety with an anti-gun person
    gun laws with a person that does not understand law
    ethics with someone without ethics

    Home defense: Nothing beats a 12ga shotgun. If all else fails you can use it as a club. I had a shotgun with a broken stock that was broken over a skull – no time for a second shot. Luckily the victim was a wild dog.

    Rights: we all have a right to be bigots. So we all can be ignorant and still have and voice opinions. God bless the Bill of Rights.

  133. Randy-in-VA,
    Maybe I should not have referred to them as "strays", originally they were but we have adopted them. It is two felines, so cat food not dog food. We have had them spayed and neutered and always take them for their shots. They just don't like staying in the house. Snakes have never been seen within 30ft of where we feed and provide them shelter.

    As for shooting a person over a deer, I don't think a deer will come to break into my house.

    As far as comments collapsing I don't have any idea what you are talking about there.

  134. B.B., or anyone else who has attempted/has experience with this…

    One of my springers has a compression tube (or whatever that little drilled out hole between the compression chamber and the breech is called) with a lot of heavy tooling marks inside. It looks like the thing was routed out freehand with a Dremel. I wanted to try to polish up the inside to see what effects it would have on velocity, assuming the rough interior causes some small amount of air turbulence. This is just for fun – I'm not expecting much in the way of results – but my concern is that I'll have to take off too much material to get out all of the gouges, effectively boring out the hole.

    My question is this: if I drill out the hole to, say, a .020 larger diameter before polishing it up, what effects might that have on the velocity, firing sequence behavior, spring life, etc?

    – Orin

  135. Orin,that is properly called a "transfer port"….How big is it currently?BB has explored alot in this area,even recently.Enter "transfer port" into tha search box on the top right side of this blog.You will find the info you seek!

  136. Orin:
    It sounds like one of my old springers has found its way to the USA.
    What with me not being averse to using Dremel type drills and even angle grinders on my guns.
    Seriously though,
    Home defence weapons are a tough call.
    Ease of use,combined with speed of use, plus effectivness and then safety when stored being paramount.Not easy.
    I have a compound bow for distance work,a pistol crossbow for shorter distance and a 22 air rifle to beat them on the head with.
    A 12 inch WWII bayonet under my bed will be the first thing I grab though.

  137. KidAgain,
    Sorry to take so long to respond to your comment 3/20/2010 @10:16am, about the U.S. Navy. Been reading through a lot of posts just came across yours. Which branch did you serve in, how long?

  138. Update on wood grips for Crosman 1377:

    I just installed my newly received Sportsman walnut grips and forearm from RB Grips on the 1377. I have to say the workmanship, fit and finish on the wood was superb. Instructions were short but good. Kit includes a felt strip to cushion slap when you pump. Kit also includes replacement steel roll pins and screws as well as brass screws and solid brass pins to match the brass cocking bolt. It even includes a nail of precisely the right size with the point ground flat to help you knock out the original pins. This is very handy for those who do not own a set of drift pin punches.

    I opted for the brass screws and solid brass pins. Since the latter do not compress, they are sized exactly for a precise fit through the holes in the steel pump arm but a Very Tight fit through the holes in the forearm. Unlike the roll pins which are much shorter and will therefore be hidden well inside the holes in the forearm, the brass pins are longer and protrude an entire millimeter once they are punch hammered in. This results in splintering of the wood on the opposite side where they emerge when you hammer them in, even though the emerging tip is tapered. This will be very difficult to prevent because the holes are recessed in a channel machined into the forearm for your fingertips. Moreover, you will feel on your finger tips the protruding millimeter of pin when you pump. So, a cautionary hint from experience: measure carefully and grind this excess off the tapered end of the pin before you hammer them home. The idea is to have them flush with the wood so you can enjoy the gold dot on each side, but not have them stick out to where they bother you every time you squeeze the forearm to pump.

    Oh well, live and learn.


  139. Orin, what sort of gun are you talking about, and in what caliber?

    Boring it out .020" (.010" all around) seems like an awful lot to remove even deep gouges. I'd really be surprised if you had to remove that much.

  140. Vince,

    It's a Crosman Quest 800x (.22) that I acquired from a friend. It wasn't in great shape and I thought it might be good to perform some experimental tuning on (experimental for me, at least). I'm still getting through all the transfer port info… Frank B was right – there is a lot of it out there.

    I had already used some 220 grit sandpaper, wrapped around the handle of a round rat's tail jeweler's file and chucked up in a drill, and even with something that coarse, scratches are still very visible. I don't think anyone worked on it before me… it looks like just bad Chinese manufacturing.

    – Orin

  141. Orin, I've had a couple of those – and in every one opening the transfer port up to 5/32" (stock is 1/8") would give me 20-30fps more. Didn't help on the .177 versions, and also didn't necessarily do any good on other guns of similar power. But on the Quest (and Gamo) in .22, it always gave me a little extra push.

    I've also tried going to 3/16", that didn't seem to change things at all.

  142. is it possible to over lube the cocking mech. and camber of a 2240. Just wondering as I always apply a couple drops at each end and on the side before I go out to shoot.

  143. BB,

    I have long admired the German Jaeger program for training and licensing hunters. The sport has some risks, and it's important for participants to understand basic gun safety as applied to hunting and basic game management. On the other hand, it's pretty hard to buy a hunting rifle if you haven't taken and passed the course — something else I happen to agree with.

    {ACHTUNG! Incoming! Please don't flame me over this; I don't consider having to pass a safety course to buy a gun an infringement on the right to keep and bear arms; I know many of you do, but that's the beauty of Amendment I; we can safely hold different opinions} Owning a firearm is a responsibility. Even the strongest supporter of the NRA's position surely agree with that sentiment.

    But the German restrictions are too strict. I wouldn't vote for them to own a gun, but I might to get a hunting license.

    That said, I don't hunt, and likely never will. My father grew up as an Orthodox Jew (not a black hat; those people are different), and a Jew cannot eat an animal killed with a bullet, because it isn't ritually Kosher. So few of us had a family tradition of hunting, and if you aren't introduced as a kid, it's pretty hard to get started.

    — I have to break this; it's too long.

  144. continued…

    I was once interviewed for a job by a guy who spent 10 minutes telling me all about how he hunted deer on the Northern Neck of Virginia. I quietly said "I don't hunt." He accused me of being a "Bambi lover," to which I pleaded guilty — broiled, baked, stewed, panfried, as meat balls and deer burger. I just don't want to go out in the woods and hunt. I got the job (but didn't take it).

    I understand how shooters are under pressure; even as an airgunner I feel it. 15 years ago when I started shooting semi-seriously, there were at least 4 decent airgun dealars in Fairfax and Arlington Counties, two of the Beeman 5-star dealers. Now there is not one single stocking dealer in either county that I can find. I hear that Wal*Mart is said to sell a good selection of air rifles. Ha! in my neighborhood. Our super-WM has about 4 tired, shopworn rifles, 2 ChineseBeemans, and 2 Crossman. They sell no wadcutters, no Pellgunoil. But they do have a small cabinet of rim- and center-fire ammunition (no guns, of course). Sports Authority has a bunch of BB guns, a few pellet guns, a ton of airsoft and some supplies, a lot more than WallyWorld, but no shotgun ammo.

    The real fight isn't to stand up in front of a convention and scream "gun rights." The real fight is to get kids started in the sports through the Scouts, the CMP, USAShooting. If we don't recruit a successor generation, there won't be anybody to buy quality products, and consequently nobody will sell them or build them. Look at the shrinkage in the number of dealers selling guns and accessories for the high precision discipline. I'm even finding it hard to locate 4.5mm pellets where the heads are sized to 4.49, 4.50, and 4.51. I'm convinced that R-10 pistol pellets are a bit oversized for the Izzy; they're a tight fit. I tried some JSB Match 4.50, and they fit much better. But 4.51mm R-10s are the favorite for my C62 rifle and C-20 pistol. So I guess I'm 2/3 lucky.

    My daughter likes to shoot, anything from a Beretta that she carries most of the time in Afghanistan to an AR-15 which she qualified on, but she is not in the armed forces so doesn't carry, to my precision guns. My son couldn't care less, and managed to lose a perfect condition Diana 6M (recoilless springer using the Giss opposed-piston system) that I lent him some years back.

    TargetTalk lately has had some serious thinking about how to get new shooters interested in competitions, ISSF style, NRA style, hunting or any other disciplines. I learned to shoot 56 years ago as a Scout in an urban troop. Urban troops don't shoot any longer. I don't know about rural ones.

    So major Question: How do we find ways to introduce young people to shooting in a way that they will try it and like it? Eddie Eagle is a good program to teach kids to stay away from stray weapons; but that is not enough to ensure the future.

    Sorry for this midnight rant. One can discuss some other time what is an "arm" covered by the 2nd Amendment? Your standard 155mm nuclear artillery shell probably isn't covered by the 2nd Amendment. Probably not even a 155 howitzer. Or an M1A2 Abrams tank with the 125mm smoothbore.

    On a lighter note, before I head to bed, the 2nd Amendment gives us the right to keep and bear arms; I noticed it doesn't say a word about ammunition. 😉


  145. BB,

    I 2nd Volvo on the German hunting stuff. I forgot to mention it earlier. That's right up there with Josh's trips to Russia as far as I'm concerned.

    Rikib, USMC, 8 Years

    DaveUK, I like the .22 head beater idea, sounds like someone earlier (forgot who) has used theirs for the same thing. I'd like to see that crossbow ia action in a self defense situation. good to have the knife as a back up, that way you can pick the lead out later.

  146. rikib

    You are overlubricating. Im sure you haven't damaged anything, but excess oil will attract dirt and contaminants and gunk it up in the long run. A light coat of oil is best, and should last several months depending on conditions.

    I'm guessing that you know to put a drop of pellgun oil on the tip of the CO2 cartridge before installing it. Keeps the seals in tip top shape.

  147. Thanks, Vince.

    I just read in the older articles where you said that before. Thanks for being willing to repeat it.

    I think I'll bore out the port only a couple sizes larger with numbered bits, but probably not all the way up to 5/32" yet. I'd kind of like to get the innards polished up and see what kind of difference it makes, now that I know I have some wiggle room.

    Thanks again for the info.

    – Orin

  148. Slinging Lead,
    Thanks for that info I just thought it made the bolt action work easier. Fortunately I am going to be installing a new steel breech shortly (when I've finished this co2 cartridge) and I can start anew. Yes I always put a drop of pellgun oil on the tip of co2 cartridges.

  149. Mr B,

    I've ordered the JB paste that B.B recommended and I'll give it a try. Hopefully that will improve things a bit.

    I'll let you know the results in due course.


  150. Linthicum? Quality Gunstocks? Expect your funds to be accepted, with no follow-up communication. Whether or not you ever see the product is debatable. It's been months, now. Don't expect PayPal to help you, either …

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