Monday, January 30, 2012

Revelation Model 205

Back in 1991 I was a stuggling cop with a growing family, trying to outfit the growing kids with things like shoes and jeans. I wanted to buy a rifle for my son to hunt whitetail deer with me and in a used gun shop I stumbled upon a Revelation Model 205, a lever action rifle remniscent of the Marlin 336. Later, during my research, I learned that this particular rifle had been made by Mossberg for the Western Auto chain stores. Still, it was a knock-around lever action .30-30 and my son carried it hunting for several years. We lived in the country then, and the rifle accounted for it's share of varmints, to include alligators in the pond.

Sometime around 2000, the rifle started exhibiting a tendency to fail to feed. It would hang up tighter than a bank vault. I took it to a gunsmith and he told me that the rifle was worn out. Worn out. The receiver is two piece, an aluminum inner and a steel outer and according to the 'smith, the aluminum inserts in those rifles would wear out.

"What can we do about that?" I asked.

"You can say you wore out a rifle."

I took it home and put it in the locker. Eventually, my son claimed it and I forgot about it. My second son, Matthew, is a master mechanic and loves a mechanical challenge. Yesterday, he came by the house and told me that he had something in the truck. When we walked out to the truck, he handed me the Revelation.

"Here ya go, Pop! I rebuilt that old rifle for you."

I was stunned. The rifle he handed me didn't look anything like the old rifle that I remembered. The stock had be refinished and the action slipped open like butter. "What did you have to do to it."

"I finally decided to take it apart and see what the problem was. There was a pin, and a spring, and the e-clip on the pin was missing. After I figured out how it was supposed to work, the rest was fairly easy. While I had it down, I refinished the stock, media blasted the barrel bands and cleaned it up a little bit."

"Well, damn, son" I objected, "I bought that rifle for you."

"I know, Pop, and I fixed it for you."

It's in the corner near the desk. I'll play with it a bit, maybe kill a deer with it, and when his son is old enough, I'll have a story to tell him.

Sunday, January 29, 2012

The Consensus

It ain't happening. The science has spoken.
The supposed ‘consensus’ on man-made global warming is facing an inconvenient challenge after the release of new temperature data showing the planet has not warmed for the past 15 years.
Really? The globe isn't warming? What in inconvenient truth?

Shooting Sunday

This afternoon after lunch, my youngest son and I slipped off to do a little evaluation. I had loaded some .308 ammo and he's got a gun that will shoot. It's a Savage 10FP, the heavy barreled cop gun and he's mounted it in a Choate Sniper stock. If you're evaluating ammo, you want a proven platform to evaluate it and his rifle is proven in that caliber.

Our standard load for that rifle is 43.0 grains of Reloder 15 under a 168 grain Sierra MatchKing bullet. It's a proven load in many rifles and I believe that it duplicates the long-proven Federal Gold Medal Match ammo.

One of the basic tenets of handloading is that if you want to change a load, you can drop down a bullet weight without getting into pressure problems, so I wanted to test that load with a 150 grain bullet and a 125 grain bullet. Both the 125 grain Sierra Gameking and the 150 grain Hornady Interlock SST are proven game bullets and if I could get them to fly from Joey's rifle, then they'd probably fly from any .308 caliber rifle.

So, after lunch, we loaded the bench and sneaked off to our range. It's a 100 yard range that we've built on family land, perfect for a quiet afternoon.

That's Joey on the bench. Yeah, that's a southpaw rifle and we had to modify the stock to fit the left-hand action. It wasn't much of a modification, though, only a simple cut on the off side to accommodate the bolt handle, and we had to fill the right-side cut where the bolt handle normally goes.

We decided to start with the 125 grain Gameking load, and it turned in a weird little target after we shot the fouler shot. The load looked like it was stringing vertically, but when we measured it, the vertical stringing was just barely over and inch.

1.04 tall and 0.811 wide, that's not a bad group for 10 shots. Not shabby at all. I might have found a soft recoiling load that I can use for pre-teen grandkids. We next tried the same load, but with a 150 grain Hornady Interlock SST. This is a great little bullet designed for hunting thin-skinned game, like the smallish whitetail deer we've got in these woods. After the barrel cooled from the first string, Joey hunkered down behind his rifle and tried to stack them all in the same hole. He very nearly succeeded.

Yeah, that's a one-inch target dot and the flier above the group he called as his 10th shot. That is a ten shot group, folks and it measures just 0.89". If you take the called flier out of the group, he's put nine shots into just 0.515. Damned fine shooting in my book.

Afterwards, we took out the .308 Handi-rifle and took turns ringing the 100 yard gong. Not a bad way at all to spend a Sunday afternoon.

Sunday Morning Dawg

I missed a good shot last week for the Sunday Dawg. It seems that the dog was supervising activities near the pool, forgot where he was, lost his footing, and fell in the pool. Milady fished him out before I could get my camera. Another lost opportunity for the Sunday Dawg.

I suggested this morning that we re-enact the event. Throw the dog in the pool while I have my camera ready, and record for all posterity his frantic attempts to get out of the pool, then record his pitiful attempt to forget about the whole incident. A re-creation of the event for event for the amusement and edification of my internet audience. Milady objected, so that idea was quickly quashed.

The dog is disgusted with the whole scenario. Doesn't want to talk about it.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

That's Racist!

The way the anti-gunners think.
All in all, once again the VPC agrees with other organizations that African Americans should stay away from guns. Those organizations include, NAACP, Storm Front, ACLU, The American Nazi Party and your local Klan Association.
Well, anytime the NAACP and the local Klan association agree on something, it must be worth considering.

Hat tip, SayUncle.

Shooting with Termite

My buddy Jonathan called me this week. I've known him for several years, we met on an internet gun forum (aka: Termite) and later realized that we lived just several miles apart. He wanted to help familiarize his teenage daughter with a revolver, so we went out to my private range to do a little shooting.

That's Jonathan and his lovely daughter, Nicole. She's a student at Louisiana Tech and wants to learn about revolvers. We began with a short safety course, talking about the Four Rules and instilling things like muzzle control and trigger discipline. Then we dry-fired a bit, got our eyes and ears covered, and started to learn the basics.

Her pistol is a little Smith and Wesson Centennial, an alloy framed revolver. We tried some .38 special loads and she seemed to handle the recoil fairly well. That's a light pistol and she wasn't sure about the grip. Her pistol has a Crimson Trace laser grip and it seemed to irritating her firing hand in recoil.

Her Dad let her try his Ruger, a heavier pistol to let her concentrate more on sight alignment and trigger control. That heavier pistol soaked up the recoil better and she was able to settle down and fire it just fine. Within a few cylinders, she was going through the firing drill like a pro. Of course, we stopped from time to time to laugh, answer questions, and reinforce both the practical and safety aspects of shooting revolvers.

She did really well with the revolvers, handling loading, unloading, and misfire drills. I had some .38 special loads that, frankly, had misfires. While I normally don't try to induce misfires, it's important to understand why they occur and what causes them. (In this case, I don't remember checking each round for powder, although that's part of my process.) Still, she handled them just fine.

After a short session with the Ruger, she went back to the Centennial, saying that she liked it's compact size and weight better than her Dad's big Ruger. A little familiarization goes a long way and shortly we were shooting a variety of pistols with different grips so that she could form opinions based on actual experience.

She shot everything on that tailgate, including my Airweight, so that she could learn what grip type she best enjoys, or more particularly, what types don't work for her. A valuable learning experience for any shooter. By the end of the morning, she was doing quite well, as evidence by her target with her revolver.

As we ended the session, I asked her if she'd like to try my .44 and she happily agreed to try it. I had it loaded with Skeeter's Load and after showing her how to operate the pistol, she gladly gave it a try.

In that photo, I managed to catch her in recoil with the big revolver. I'll also note that I got the same insane giggle that I've gotten when I let other young ladies shoot that handgun. It's quite heartwarming.

All in all, a beautiful day, a lovely young lady and a sack full of revolvers. What a way to spend a Saturday morning!

Saturday Morning

I'm finishing my third cup of coffee while piddling, waiting for a friend to show up so we can go shooting. He's got a college age daughter who has expressed an interest and we're taking her to my private range to familiarize her with handguns. I may try out my Airweight depending on how the session goes. I might not even take it out; we'll see. This is about her confidence and first steps, not about me.

I've got all my gear stacked and I'm going through the mental list in my head. In another half hour, we'll be heading to the range.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Goblin Down

I remember when Kim duToit used to do a feature about goblins who earn their just desserts. I don't know of anyone that's doing that meme, but here's a little item I found.

It seems that some old coot in Pennsylvania was riding his bicycle and some young punks tried to rob him. Oops, wrong ole man.
The man was riding his bicycle about 11 a.m. on the Thun Trail near the Bertolet Fishing Dock in West Reading when the boys knocked him off his bicycle and pinned him against a fence in an apparent robbery attempt, police said.
Only problem with their plan, is that no plan survives the first contact, intact.
Two of the boys were assaulting the man when he pulled a handgun and shot them, police said.

Julias Johnson, a 16-year-old on probation, was pronounced dead at the scene. The other boy was taken to Reading Hospital with a single gunshot wound and is expected to survive.
Well, hell, that's 50%. I'm betting that the surviving boy will be charged with murder. That peculiarity in most codes where when you're committing a felony and someone dies, you're guilty of murder.
Berks County District Attorney John Adams said he does not condone violence, but said the man had no choice but to defend himself against the teens.
An altogether fitting and proper end to this scenario, the codger won't be facing charges, one goblin is in the ground and the other is facing a long prison term.

I'm going outside to do my happy dance. Hopefully, I won't scare the neighbors.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012


We're under a helluva storm, it's been lightning and raining and thundering since dark. The dog, of course, is freaked out.

We need the rain, and I love a good thunderstorm.

Why We Win!

Did y'all see this? It seems that a US Special Operations team has rescued an American citizen and an associate who had been kidnapped in Somalia.
U.S. special operations forces have rescued a kidnapped American aid worker and her Danish colleague in Somalia, the White House and officials with the aid organization said Wednesday. During the raid, all nine of their captors were killed.
All nine of the captors was killed. I bet that sends a message to the lowlife scum who threaten American citizens.

Way to go, SpecOps guys.



A friend sent me this clip, and I'm in the mood for some silliness. This is a clip from a nursing home talent show, and I was thinking about my sister who administers a nursing home.

I bet that fellow is a hoot around the bingo table.

This one's for you, Patty!

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

TSA Equality

I notice that Senator Rand Paul had a problem yesterday trying to get on an airplane to attend a session of Congress. TSA defends itself, saying that they treated the Senator just like everyone else. Good for them. The government should treat Senators like everyone else.

My problem is that they treat everyone like that, a stunning over-reach of government authority and a huge pain in the wazoo to traveling Americans. I'm one that believes that the government has no business in the airline security business. Let the airlines take care of their own security and the travelers will reward the airline that does the best job.

Jindal's Education Plan

I see that Steve Monaghan, president of the Louisiana Federation of Teachers, has come out against Governor Jindal's education plan.

This is still a conversation we need to have, but if the LFT is against it, then I take that as a ringing endorsement of the plan. Monaghan says, "We need to have a debate over the value of experience." No, Steve, we don't. What we need to have a debate about is the value of teachers unions.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Vouchers again

The issue of school vouchers came up on Chad Rogers site. Our governor is pushing an education reform agenda and I believe that it's a conversation that we need to have. One part of that agenda is vouchers for students attending failing schools to use the voucher to attend a public school. As in all grand schemes, the devil is in the details.
Opponents of vouchers remain wary. They say a voucher plan would send government money to schools that can "cherry pick" students and don't have the same obligations to educate the disabled or those with special needs. While students attending private schools with public money would have to take the same standardized tests as public school students, the schools themselves would not be subject to the same accountability standards, which include the assignment of rankings and letter grades to individual schools.
Those special needs and disabled children often drive the school's score down. While federal law requires that the schools provide services to such children, the simple fact of the matter is that few of them graduate and are listed as dropouts on the school performance score. That's not fair to the school.

We need to have this conversation, and we need to level the playing field. I'm not proposing that we cast those kids aside, but I am proposing that the school accountability score not take those kids performance into account. It's certainly not a teacher's fault if a child can only progress to a limited education, but at age 22 those kids have received all the services that they're entitled to receive and they end their public school experience. They're then listed as dropouts simply because they didn't graduate. Let's serve the kids, and lets do what makes sense.

Herrett's Grips

When I bought that Bodyguard yesterday, it came with a set of ugly grips. Ugly is in the eye of the beholder and the more I handled the revolver, the more I liked the way it felt in my hands. As I inspected the grips more closely, some interesting things came into focus.

They're made by Herrett's Stocks, Inc and Herrett has been making gun grips for a long time.

These are wooden grips and I'd suspect walnut, but I'm not ready to bet on that. They're finely checkered but the points aren't sharp. The effect gives the grips a pleasing roughness without feeling "pointy".

The frontstrp is open and these stocks don't have a filler behind the trigger guard. Also, there's an additional 3/8ths inch of wood below the grip frame, which mean all three fingers of my hand can grip the stock.

The backstrap is covered in wood, which is something we don't see a lot of these days. The effect of the open frontstap and closed backstrap tends to move the grip back away from the revolver, just a quarter-inch or so. It seems to make the gun longer, increasing the length of pull, which is a measurement we don't often take with pocket revolvers.

I had seen Herrett's stocks before, but I've never owned any. From looking at Herrett's website, it looks like they make stocks the old-fashioned way, one stock at a time. You also order stocks the old-fashioned way, by printing an order form and sending it to them, either by fax or mail. They want a tracing of your hand, which tells me that they understand how the human hand interacts with a revolver.

I went to their website originally to try to see what type grips I had on this revolver. I have to admit that I still don't know what model I have, but they fit and feel good, so I'll keep them on the pistol. They may be custom grips and if so, that only deepens the mystery of this little revolver.

Sunday Morning Dawg

Milady's mother came over to spend the weekend and the dog hangs out under her feet. When Meemaw sits at the kitchen counter, the dog is right there, figuring that food might be involved and hoping that something will hit the floor.

Even as hope wears thin, he lays by her feet. He's a shameless mutt. Shameless, I tell you.

I don't know where he got the idea that he could beg for table food.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

In the Tank

So, ABC news publishes a pictorial about nine historic politicians that have philandered. Interesting in that they seem to omit William Jefferson Clinton, the guy that was impeached over such shenanigans.

How in the tank for the Democrats can ABC news be? I mean, come on, is there any pretense at being objective? They cover things like Gingrich's infidelity 10 years ago, but during Edwards campaign they failed to cover it while it was happening. Everybody knew, but you didn't see it in the news cycle.

And they wonder why nobody watches the evening news anymore? Amazing.

Model 38

The Smith and Wesson Model 38 revolver is an iconic piece, immediately recognizable from it's humpbacked hammer shroud. You either love them or hate them, but it's been a pistol long recognized by firearms enthusiasts. It's a lightweight, aluminum frame revolver chambered for the .38 special cartridge. It's also known as the Bodyguard

Probably the most iconic image of the Bodyguard revolver is that unforgettable image that comes from Vietnam. Graphic in nature, the image shows Vietnamese general Nguyen Ngoc Loan shooting a Viet Cong captain named Bay Lop in the head. Historians agree that General Loan had sufficient justification for shooting Captain Lop, but this image is one that is forever tied to the Model 38.

My daughter-in-law wants to get her concealed carry permit, so I've been shuffling around, trying to find a suitable firearm. She told me that she liked a .38 special revolver, and she really likes my Model 60. She prefers a steel frame for the weight, which tends to mitigate recoil. In my browsings, I happened to stumble across a Model 38, and while I've never owned one of those revolvers, I've always wanted one. This morning I went to look at it again, did a Jim March Checkout and found the revolver to be solid. It's pinned, but SW never recessed this revolver. Herrit grips, which seem to fit my hand particularly well. The price was such that I promised the counter guy I'd never discuss it. He treats return customers surprisingly well.

After I got home, Milady happened to see it and wanted to inspect it more thoroughly. She then exclaimed that this is the revolver she wants to use to get her concealed carry permit.

Huh! I guess I'm still looking for a Model 38.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Takes the Fifth?

I see where a DOJ official under subpoena from Congress has advised through counsel that he intends to invoke the 5th Amendment when called to testify to Congress.
The chief of the Criminal Division of the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Arizona is refusing to testify before Congress regarding Operation Fast and Furious, the federal gun-running scandal that sent U.S. weapons to Mexico.

Patrick J. Cunningham informed the House Oversight Committee late Thursday through his attorney that he will use the Fifth Amendment protection.
Why, pray tell, would he invoke the 5th Amendment. The normal reason is so that he won'[t have to incriminate himself under oath. Think about that for a minute. The head of the US Attorney's Office in Arizona does not want to incriminate himself under oath. I expect that he'll be disbarred and immediately fired from DOJ. If that doesn't happen, then we'll know that Fast and Furious is a criminal conspiracy.


The big question these days, is how do we educate our children; to best prepare them for the future? It's a great question and we have to explore the conversation from time to time. Our governor, Bobby Jindal, has a plan to allow vouchers for some kids at schools earning a C, D, or F on the school performance scores. Jindal also wants to change the way that tenure is earned and make it easier to fire teachers who are not effective.

This is a conversation we need to have. I work in a high school and I see the challenges faced every day by the educators who work in that school. The school where I work is a wonderful high school with a long, storied tradition of academic excellence. Those teachers still produce some of the smartest students I've ever seen, yet the school only earns a "C" in the accountability score, while also showing the highest ACT average in the parish. There is a jarring dissonance in those two facts and that dissonance is mainly a factor of the school system.

First, we have a large population of special-needs children. I revel in the time I get to spend interacting with those children, but the simple fact is that they count against the school. They'll never graduate, so they count as drop-outs when they leave. Those students alone increase our drop-out rate to a point where it's virtually scandalous.

Second, our school's main population zone is low-income, minority students who struggle with traditional education, at a school that stresses academic excellence. It is not uncommon to find a 17-year-old freshman who recently came to the school from the 8th grade. If that student buckles down, gets serious about his education and passes every class, he'll graduate at age 20 or 21. A sizeable percentage of those students drop out as well, simply because they're not prepared to start high school. They've already been programmed to fail. Don't misunderstand, I'm not down on kids that might be at-risk, but when you send a kid to high school at age 17, don't be surprised that he drops out at age 19.

Third, the public schools have to accept nearly any student who walks in the front door. Public schools don't get to pick and choose their students.

So, those three factors mitigate against a very successful high school. Our students win academic competitions, dominate literary rallys, earn scholarships at an astounding rate, but the simple fact of the special needs kids and at-risk students keep the school performance scores low.

If a kid decides to take a voucher, where is he going to attend school? If five hundred of those kids decide to take a voucher, will there be enough desks at the private schools to accept them?

Lets level the playing field here. Adjust the definition of a drop-out to reflect reality. Find out which schools are truly in need of supervision. Accept the fact that one-size-fits-all education isn't going to work for some kids. Then, lets talk about whether we should be in the business of accepting federal tax dollars if those dollars come with onerous pre-conditions. I'd rather see us forgo federal tax money if we could have greater control over the way we educate our students.

This is a conversation we need to have.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Another Quiz

Mostly Cajun linked to a Pew Research Quiz and I went over to take it.

Nailed it, 13 out of 13 questions, along with 8% of the public. I try to pay attention to current events, and my teachers in High School made damned sure that I paid attention to maps (as well as did my instructors in the Army).

Go take the quiz. Every high school student in the country should take this quiz today.

O.F. Mossberg

O.F. Mossberg is an old name in American gun manufacturing. They've been making firearms of very stripe for a long time. Their model 500 pump shotgun is a basic, no frills, pump shotgun much loved of the people here in Louisiana. It's rugged, durable and can be had for a week's pay, which is a great motivator for a working man. For very little money he can put a shotgun on layaway, get pay it off "on time" and have a shotgun to enjoy the hills and swamps of our great state.

I see that Mossberg has been branching out into other firearms, most notably into bolt action and semiauto rifles. However, I was cruising a firearms forum and saw that they're producing a lever action .30-30 rifle as well. There's a lot to love in the .30-30 lever action rifle and readers of my scribblings know that it is a caliber that I've long admired. The iconic American deer rifle is the lever action rifle and with the demise of Winchester several years ago, the only choice left was Marlin. Marlin makes great rifles, but several years ago, Remington bought Marlin. Remington itself is owned by the Freedom Group, part of Cerebus Management, a large holding company, and reports of recent months indicate that when Remington closed the Marlin plant and moved production to New Ilion, some problems arose in quality control and manufacturing. This left room for another manufacturer to step to the plate and fill the niche.

It looks like Mossberg has done that. While I haven't had a change to look at the new rifle, it looks like it has some nifty features, like the ability to easily mount a scope even though the rifle ejects from the top, probably like the old Angle Eject Winchester rifles. Wood stocked, traditional, it should fill a niche and if it is as robust and durable as other Mossberg firearms, it should be a great seller. It seems to have a tang safety, which is a feature that some folks will like, and the receiver is drilled and tapped.

However, with innovation comes the ability to make changes that leave some folks scratching their heads. I'm fairly traditional in my tastes, but I'm smart enough to realize that some folks like the Modern Rifle concept. Rails, collapsible stocks, flash hiders, all those things have a place in the gun world. If it's tactical, it sells and the business of a gun manufacturer is to sell firearms. I get it. However, this particular model leaves me chuckling. The Mossberg SPX Lever Action Rifle.

Hehehe. Collapsible stock, rail forend, flash hider, it's all there. It's got me scratching my head and chuckling, but I hope they sell a boatload of them. Really, I do. Lots of folks think that the .30-30 cartridge is fuddy-duddy when the truth of the matter is that it is still useful for 90% of whitetail deer hunting in the wooded states. Perfectly capable of taking a deer out to 150 yards or so with the newer ammunition. Handloaders find it extremely versatile with both jacketed and cast bullets, you can load it from mild to wild with bullets from 110 to 170 grains or so. The .30-30 is a magnificent cartridge and one suited to a lever action firearm. Mossberg may have a winner on their hands.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012


The Rev'rund Jackson is a deadbeat dad? Really? Why does that not surprise me.
In official documents filed with the Los Angeles Superior Court and obtained by The ENQUIRER, Karin Stanford claims the 70-year-old famed civil rights leader owes $11,694.50 for their daughter Ashley, now 12.
Any person who won't take care of his or her children is a worthless sonofabitch. Of course, I've put the Rev'rund Jackson in that category before. If this is true, they ought to throw his sorry ass in jail.


If there were ever two examples of misguided government over-reach, SOPA and PIPA might head the list. These two pieces of pending legislation are heralded by the big media concerns. The RIAA, among others, are supporting this legislation as a way to stop online piracy. The simple fact is that the legislation will not stop piracy and will do irreparable harm to a free and open internet.

I have a website and I'm a copyright holder. I certainly don't support online piracy, but I don't want my website shut down in the event that one of my commenters happens to post copyrighted material on my site. This is bad legislation and unless we get involved, it might pass into law.

I spent some time today, contacting my Congress-critters. I sent emails to "Dumbass" Rodney Alexander, and to "Katrina" Mary Landrieu. I tried to email "Diaper" Dave Vitter, but his email was down, so I called his satellite office locally. The staffer there told me that he was painfully aware of the issues, that his email was clogged and that the phones are ringing off the hook.

If you haven't yet, call your Congress-critters. This is important.

UPDATED. Via Hot Air, we learn that Chris Dodd, a former senator and an executive at the Motion Picture Associaton of America (MPAA) thinks that we're complaining unfairly about SOPA.
It is an irresponsible response and a disservice to people who rely on them for information and use their services. It is also an abuse of power given the freedoms these companies enjoy in the marketplace today. It’s a dangerous and troubling development when the platforms that serve as gateways to information intentionally skew the facts to incite their users in order to further their corporate interests.
It's interesting to note that when Dodd was a senator, he was listed as one of the most corrupt in the halls of Congress. Really? Most corrupt? That's a high bar for Congressmen.

Just for the record, I should remind ex-Senator, now-shill Dodd that I'm not a corporate interest and I still oppose the legislation.

Call your Congress-critters. This is important.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Tuesday night

Basketball games make for a long day. Went to work at 0700, got home at 2130 local. Not a bad day, but certainly a long one. My boots are off, my uniform is ready for the morrow and I've poured myself a drink. The alarm clock will go off in seven hours, so I've got to sleep fast.

Just another day for a school-house cop. I think I'll upgrade my resume and go talk to the incoming sheriff. I'm about ready to graduate from the school-house beat.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Reloading Woes

I found myself off this morning, part of the national celebration to commemorate Martin Luther King. I spent about ten minutes ruminating on the man's life and his notable achievements, then decided my time would be better spent on the reloading bench.

I went out and reloaded some .308 Winchester, with some youth loads I want to try. That went quickly, then took out a box of new .25-06 brass and got down my manuals.

Back in September, a gracious reader sent me some ancient .257 bullets that he had no use for. I thought I'd load some with Reloder 19 powder and see how they do in my Ruger 77. The Nosler manual says that RL19 powder is great for that weight bullet.

So, I started weighing powder and seating bullets; I got about 20 done when I lifted one cartridge and realized it was leaking powder. Turned the brass over and saw that I'd forgotten to prime the brass. Well, crap! I took down my bullet puller and started whacking bullets from the cases. Dumped powder and bullets into a suitable container. After I'd cleaned up the mess and started sorting bullets from the powder, I realized that I had totally wrecked the noses of all those bullets. A simple whack with the bullet puller was sufficient to upset the lead nose past being usable.

I primed all the brass and started over, loading a series of cartridges with those bullets. It'll probably be a week or so until I can see how they fly, but I know that those are very soft bullets. Probably designed for the .250-3000. I remember reading an article back in the '60s where Jeff Cooper was talking about the .250-3000 as a cartridge for the Savage 99 rifle. Here's his latest thoughts on the cartridge, from his Commentaries, Vo 7, No 1.
The manufacturer made a point of issuing it in caliber 250-3000, maintaining that you could reach the magical 3000 fps figure with an 87-grain 25-caliber bullet. The 250-3000 (or 250 Savage) was a good enough deer gun, if your deer were not too big, and it was gentle as a lamb to shoot.
Well, if Cooper says that the 87 grain bullet is sufficent for deer, then our smallish whitetails around here should certainly qualify. I'd feel better shooting at them with a 115-117 grain bullet and I've got some of those worked up too, but I just had to load some of those 87 grain bullets to see how they shoot. I have no doubt that I can push them past 3000 fps with the bigger case of the .25-06 and new propellants, but that's not the purpose of this exercise. I never approached a max load, preferring accuracy over velocity. Those bullets are plenty soft and should upset well at any reasonable velcity. I bet they'd vaporize a crow, or do just fine for coyotes or like-sized varmints.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Sunday Morning Dawg

I noticed that every time I got around the dog, I was overcome by the odor of dirty dawg, so Milady decided it was time for a bath. Every time we give the dog a bath, he goes into full freak-out mode when he's released. It's not a pretty sight.

He's moving a little fast for the camera. It was having trouble focusing.

He'll calm down shortly, and he'll be a better smelling dog.

Saturday, January 14, 2012


Back when I met Milady, we were both exploring the internet and learning about online problems that might crop up, not the least of which is privacy. We found each other on Yahoo! Personals and she used an alias in her online persona to try to keep the creeps out of her life. Evidently it didn't work out well for her, because she got me in her life and she'd be much better off if she had come to her senses and run me up the road.

Lots of folks use aliases online. My alias is PawPaw, and several times over the years people have come to me and asked if I were PawPaw from PawPaw's House. Yup, that's me.

Last week, we got a letter from AARP, trying to sell Milady some insurance. Only thing is that it came addressed to her internet persona. We laughed and laughed, because I don't believe that Becky is going to buy any insurance.

They even got the address right, which has been redacted in this photo, but which in itself is not a huge secret. I guess that Yahoo! has sold their mailing list to AARP, but how they connected the name with the address still has me scratching my head.

It's all for naught, 'cause Becky ain't buying any insurance. If they'd send us a voter registration card, we might be able to use that.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

PIss on 'em

It's been a long day and I've been watching the brouhaha about the Marines accused of urinating on the bodies of the deceased Taliban.

It might not have been the politically correct thing to do, and GIs and Marines are fighting a tough fight, coupled with the additional burden of the internet. Lots of things posted that should be kept between warriors. Yet it looks like our government is over-reacting to the battlefield antics of some enlisted heroes who took a little time to de-stress after a firefight. This whole thing is one huge over-reaction, and by that I'm not only talking about the delicate sensibilities of the Pentagon. Piss on 'em. We're in a shooting war and warriors have to urinate occasionally. If there happens to be the dead bodies of the enemy there, it's a happy coincidence.

As far as the Kabul government outrage, piss on them too. We weren't invited over there and we're doing the job that they're either unable or unwilling to do. It appears that the Afghani government is hopelessly corrupt and we should remember why we went to that country in the first place; to kill Taliban. We should unleash our warriors, kill the Taliban, then come home. If, on the way, we piss on a few dead enemy, who gives a crap?

But, investigating warriors for this type of indiscretion is certainly no way to conduct a war.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Salmon Croquettes

Digging around the larder, looking for supper, I spotted a can of Pink Salmon, packed fresh in Alaska 14.75 oz. Salmon Croquette! We haven't had those in a while.

Salmon Croquette

1 can Pink Salmon
1 roll Ritz crackers
1 egg
Vegetable oil

Crush the Ritz crackers in a large bowl. Add the canned salmon, juice and all. Crack an egg into the mixture and mix. When the mixture is thoroughly gooey, divide the mix into six portions, pat flat and fry in a skillet using vegetable oil. Makes six salmon patties.

Pictures you ask? Ha! Ain't none left. Milady and I had them with a baked potato. Milady took hers with a glass of wine, while I settled for a diet soda.


It looks like someone whacked another Iranian nuclear scientist today.
An Iranian nuclear scientist was killed by a bomb placed on his car by a motorcyclist in Tehran on Wednesday,
So, this motorcyclist drives up, sticks a bomb on the scientist's car, and detonates it. Hmmm. Wonder who is doing that?

Fuel Prices

I notice that prices for unleaded gasoline jumped 12 cents the other day then I noticed this story that's making the rounds. It appears that the EPA is fining companies for not blending their gasoline with a biofuel that does not yet exist in production quantities.
Penalizing the fuel suppliers demonstrates what happens when the federal government really, really wants something that technology is not ready to provide. In fact, while it may seem harsh that the Environmental Protection Agency is penalizing them for failing to do the impossible,
This is big government at work, folks. I personally see no reason for the government to be regulating the fuel business at all. This is government over-reach and it's costing us all money.

The sooner we disband the EPA, the better off we'll be.

Louisville Leather

I was recently contacted by Ryan Kuhl of Louisville Leather. They're a small custom shop that produces custom leather holsters. He said that he'd send me a product to review, but I don't believe that's necessary. He seems to make holsters for semi-auto pistols and most of my carry work is done with revolvers. If he ever gets into revolver work, I might like a nice thumbreak for my Model 60. We'll see.

I do like the looks of that pancake holster. If you're in the market for a custom holster for one of the pistols on his list, give him a call at 502.403.8002. I'm sure that he can fix you up.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

About that Game

Alabama made a masterful performance, nearly perfect football. It was a matchup between two great teams, and Saban & Company had done their homework. Great game from an Alabama perspective.

LSU sucked from the get-go. Jefferson stunk up the field, and Lee rotted on the bench. The Honey Badger was impotent and toothless. Still, LSU is the SEC champion this year and they beat everyone that needed beating, including the teams in most of the Bowl games. Alabama ain't the SEC champs this year. Alabama won a bowl game, but they didn't win their division nor their conference.

I heard that the LSU team bus got stranded on the interstate today, heading back to Baton Rouge. Some wag had painted a 50 yard line across the interstate and LSU couldn't cross it.

Monday, January 09, 2012

Monday afternoon

It's been a rainy, miserable, foggy, humid day. The weather has been just lousy.

However, this afternoon, absolutely nothing was scheduled at the school-house. PawPaw came home, took care of a couple of errands and chores and talked to Milady about supper. I believe that we're going to the barbeque house, get a couple of rib plates, then come home and watch the football game.

What football game is that, you ask? Why LSU vs Alabama, of course. The Cajun Smurf offers a few words of counsel for the Alabama fans.

That's what I'm talking about.

Sunday, January 08, 2012

Light a candle

I understand that the Brady Bunch wants everyone to light a candle to stop violence. This one time I'm linking to them, hoping they check their trackbacks.

That's a great idea. Being able to see clearly is part of being a responsible citizen, and responsible citizens want to throw light where it will do the most good. I'd prefer a flashlight, so that I could see more clearly as I'm engaging the threat, but a candle sends a symbolic warmth.

Hat tip to Weer'd World and Say Uncle.

Rodger's Italian Beef

I'm known to plunder around the internet, looking for interesting things and one of the blogs I read regularly is Rodgers Curmudgeonly and Skeptical. It's a fun blog with occasional bits of interesting news, commentary, and recipes. Just before Christmas I saw this recipe for Italian Beef, and while I'm a pretty good backyard cook, I've never dabbled much in Italian cooking other than the odd pot of spaghetti. However, Rodger made this recipe look so appetizing that I had to try it.

What's not to love about this sandwich?

Doesn't that look luscious? I thought you'd agree. So, I went out and bought the ingredients. I've never been one for using much parsley or basil, and who would think to boil a good beef roast in Italian dressing? Still, I like to expand my horizons, so I tried it. Put it in the slow cooker last night. When I awoke this morning, the house was filled with the aroma of beefy wonderful.

Rodger's Italian Beef

3 cups water
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon dried basil
1 teaspoon onion salt
1 teaspoon dried parsley
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 bay leaf
1 (.7 ounce) package dry Italian-style
salad dressing mix
1 (5 pound) rump roast

1. Combine water with salt, ground black pepper, oregano, basil, onion salt, parsley, garlic powder, bay leaf, and salad dressing mix in a saucepan. Stir well, and bring to a boil.
2. Place roast in slow cooker, and pour salad dressing mixture over the meat.
3. Cover, and cook on Low for 10 to 12 hours, or on High for 4 to 5 hours. When done, remove bay leaf, and shred meat with a fork.
After 10 hours in the slow cooker, the beef is falling apart. I sampled just a taste and the flavor is incredible.

What's not to love about easy, tasty recipes?

Sunday Morning Dawg

Tomorrow is the big game, the BCS Championship between LSU and Alabama and we're all excited about it here in the Bayou State. Of course, nothing is ever a sure thing, so we look to the dog for prognostication, in case PawPaw wants to lay a bet on the game.

Looks like the dog believe that LSU will triumph. I believe it too.

He won't give me a point spread, but he believes that LSU will remain victorious and have a sweep season.

Saturday, January 07, 2012

What Say Ye?

I've seen this brouhaha in several locations over the last several weeks, and I admit that I'm ignorant about the situation.

It seems that the US is looking for a new light attack aircraft, and early on the two pretenders were the US-Canada company Hawker Beechcraft and the Brazilian firm Embraer.

Hawker Beechcraft is upgrading it's T-6 aircraft to carry weapons, and Embraer is supporting it's Super Tucano. Now, it seems, the Beechcraft has been excluded from the competition and the company is howling.

My knee-jerk reaction is that we should support American companies over foreign competition in military contracts, but there's evidently something that I don't understand. Please educate me. What say ye?

Friday, January 06, 2012

Thousand Yard Coyote

I was over at the Firing Line forum and someone recommended that I watch this little video about John Burns of Greybull Precision hitting a coyote at 1017 yards.

That is as foreign to me as would be walking on the moon. I don't know how I'd act if I could see a target 1000 yards away. I'm pretty sure that my equipment is up to the task. In the piney woods where I hunt, 300 yards is a long way.

Bitten by a Goat

The Friday news dump is that Jon Huntsman was bitten by a goat while campaigning in New Hampshire.
"He took a bite out of my kneecap,” Mr. Huntsman said “Is there a better indicator in the state of New Hampshire than how well you do with the goat?
While interesting I don't think it's much of an indicator, except that it indicates you were near a goat. Back duriing my Mother Earth News phase of life, I raised goats on our small hobby farm, along with a variety of other wildlife. Goats will bite you wherever is most available and because they're knee-high, they often seem to bite people on the knees.

If you're around goats, Jon, stand on a stump (in itself, an honored political maneuver). Then the goats will bite you on the toes.

Thursday, January 05, 2012

The Honey Badger

It's a drink being served in Baton Rouge.
The Wall Street Journal reported on Thursday that the “Honey Badger” drink is a shot of Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Honey Whiskey dropped into a Bandit Blonde beer (the official LSU brew, of course) and is served in the Bayou.
Bandit Blonde is the official beer of LSU, produced in cooperation with Tin Roof Brewing Company.

Sounds like a boilermaker by another name, but LSU is known as a drinking college.

Do not hire this man.

Really. He's not worth the hassle. If I found myself supervising him, I'd immediately start disciplinary procedures, prior to termination.

Don't hire this guy.

Goblin Down

It's a fairly obligatory posting, but you've all heard by now of the 18 year old widow in Oklahoma who shot a stalker trying to get into her house. He had a knife and she shot him with a 12 gauge shotgun when the broke in the door. She was on the phone with the 911 dispatcher and had been on the phone with them for about 20 minutes when the goblin broke through the door.

She shot him dead. Protecting her infant child. Protecting herself.

Of course, the prosecutors in Oklahoma say that she was totally justified. The dead goblin had an accomplice and he is now in jail on 1st Degree Murder charges. It seems that if someone dies while you're committing a felony, you're on the hook for the death, even if you didn't pull the trigger. That's good law.

Some say that it's a shame that she had to wait so long for the police to arrive. From all indications, she lives in rural Oklahoma, and when you're the only deputy in a wide zone, it might take 20 minutes to get to a call on the other end of the zone.

The little lady done good. Her child is safe, she's safe, and the goblins are accounted for. One's dead, the other is in jail.

Wednesday, January 04, 2012


I see that no one got 25% of the vote in the Iowa caucuses. Romney and Santorum flirted with 25%, but didn't go over the mark. Yet, they act like getting a quarter of the vote is a big deal. That's why the Iowa caucuses are bullshit. WIthout a clear majority, no one won. It's that simple.

Tuesday, January 03, 2012


My sister asked how she could find the recipes on the blog. The sphere on the right sidebar only uses the last 20 labels I've used, so sometimes the recipes fall off.

This should put it back on.

Monday, January 02, 2012

Officer Down

It seems that some yahoo has shot and killed a park ranger at Rainier state park.
Park Ranger Margaret Anderson, a mother of two who was married to another ranger at the park, was shot about 10:30 a.m. after setting up a roadblock to stop a car that was fleeing another officer.
The guy was at a party in a nearby community and officers responded to a shots-fired call at the party. The shooter fled and Ranger Anderson was killed trying to stop the goblin at a roadblock. The guy has held up in Mount Rainier National Park and law enforcement is trying to find him.

But, the Seattle paper has to take a swipe at Congress.
Congress lifted a ban on carrying loaded guns in national parks in February 2010 amid warnings by critics that the action would lead to gun violence and poaching.
Really? You think that a ban on guns in national parks would have stopped this guy from going in there armed? Is the editorial board of the Seattle Times so clueless as to believe that a firearms ban would have made any difference whatsoever in this scenario?

I grieve for Officer Anderson, and send my heartfelt condolences to her family. I'll reserve my outrage for the editors at the Seattle Times, who chose to use this tragedy to take a cheap shot. If they, for one minute, think that any ban would have stopped this tragedy, they're too clueless to understand logic.

,357 for Deer?

If you go to the gun forums, there is always the question of whether the .357 magnum is adequate for deer. The answer is always resoundingly yes. Not optimal, perhaps, but adequate. There the difference lies. As in all things about hunting, an adequate cartridge is one where it is used within the envelope that provides enough power and energy to do the job cleanly.

Recently, a buddy, John, emailed me about some success his daughter had using the .357 magnum in a lever gun. I'll let him tell you the story.
I think Rachel feels a .357 carbine is adequate for whitetail deer hunting, under 100 yds. Dec 27, Tuesday morning, she killed a 2.5 yr old 7 pt buck, live weight of 150 lbs. It is her first buck, and the first one I actually called in by grunting. We saw it grunting and chasing a doe thru the palmetto bushes, and when I grunted, the doe turned on her afterburners and left while the buck stopped and started looking for the "intruder". I grunted one more time, and the buck started easing our direction thru the brush. When he got within 40 yds, he slipped out onto the trail to get a better look, and my daughter was ready. Deer was quartering towards us, bullet hit forward on the on-side shoulder, penetrating diagonally thru the right lung, liver, stomach, and ended up just in the muscle in the upper part of the left hind quarter. Yes, nearly 3 ft of penetration from a factory Remington .357 Mag 158 gr soft-point load. I recovered the bullet when we were deboning the meat to grind.
There's a picture below and if you look at the picture, you'll see what I call a swamp forest. Mature trees, a mixed hardwood forest with a few conifers, mainly cypress. However, that forest has a thick undertory of brush and palmetto, which limits vision to 100 yards or less at ground level. This is the country for which a lever carbine shines. Ranges are short.

You're not going to make a 200 yard shot in that tangle. Rachel took that deer at 40 yards and from all indications the rifle was adequate to the task.

Good job, Rachel.

Sunday, January 01, 2012

Sunday Morning Dawg

After the rain this week, the pond near the house has filled considerably. We're still in a drought, but we've seen more water this week than we have in a long time. The dog and I decided to walk out and survey the water line.

That's much better, says the dog. The pond is nearly full. Only one thing left to do, and we all know the dog's fondness for feral water.

That's right! Gotta get a belly full while we're here. There might be water in the bowl, but it doesn't taste like this good pond water. Happy New Year, everyone!