Change Needed

On my way back home this morning, I got a call from the NRA, wanting me to renew my membership.  The lady was very pleasant, with a deep Southern drawl, but was obviously reading from the standard NRA fund-raising spiel about upcoming legislation brought by Democrats, Chuck Schumer wants to take your  guns away, etc. etc.  Then she switched to the “Now I need you to renew your NRA commitment, so let’s get that taken care of” closer.

My response was not what she expected, nor I think what she wanted.

“Frankly, I’m more than a little disappointed in how the NRA is spending our membership dollars — for starters, I don’t want my money being spent just so Wayne LaPierre can look good on TV, and I’m pretty sure Col. Oliver North could point to a few similar misuses of the NRA’s cash.  So I’m not going to renew my NRA membership today, or, most likely, in the near future either.  Instead, I am going to send the equivalent amount to the Second Amendment Foundation who, it appears, have been quite successful in arguing our cause before the state courts and the Supreme Court as well.  Feel free to pass these sentiments on to the senior management of the NRA.  Good day to you.”

…and I hung up.

Or have I missed something here?  (I should point out that I have a three-year membership of the TSRA, which I have every intention of renewing.)

Feel free to enlighten me in Comments.

Gratuitous Gun Pic – Mauser Sporter (8x60mm S)

Here’s another take on last week’s GGP of the Mauser Sporter 7x57mm rifle.  This one (also from Collectors Firearms) is more conventional-looking, and chambered for the unusual 8x60mm S cartridge:

And the action is likewise quite lovely, with a polished knob bolt (rather than the butterknife) and conventional scope rings.  Still with the full stock and double set triggers, though.

As for the 8x60mm S cartridge:  it’s basically a lengthened casing derived from the military 8x57mm cartridge, and was created to circumvent the Versailles Treaty restrictions on the production of military chamberings — the thought being that hunters and their clubs could become ersatz  reserve units for the Wehrmacht.  (I know, stupid, but that’s gummint for ya.)  So DWM simply changed the cartridge while keeping the bullet (the “S” denotes .323″) — and the longer casing meant more gunpowder, ergo  a more powerful cartridge.  As such, the 8x60mm is very close to the .30-06 Springfield in terms of performance.

So why buy this rifle, when the cartridges are hard to find?  Actually, one might think that the 8×60 S is rare, but it isn’t — quite a feat given that it was made solely for pre-WWII German hunting rifles.   True, you do have to look around for them, but they’re made in quantity by Serbia’s Prvi Partizan company, and in keeping with PPU’s philosophy, they’re inexpensive — I found them selling for just over $22 per 20, which makes the rifle a perfectly acceptable purchase.  (The only problem is that this rifle is horribly –and I think unjustifiably — expensive, even by Collector’s standards.)

Now… where are those lottery tickets?

Comeback Of The Year

Longtime Friend And One-Time Bandmate Knob owns a BMW i3 because he lives in Monaco (ergo  no long distances to drive) and in Monaco, recharges are free at the city-supplied charging stations if you have Monaco license plates (ergo  free electricity AND a free parking place — the latter not found anywhere else in Monaco).

So of course I had to send this this email:

…whereupon he responded:

I LOL’d.

Pretty Much Forever

I’m going to add my two cents to this opinion (found via Insty, thankee) about keeping your magazines loaded:

Even when kept fully compressed, a magazine spring will retain its energy long past the operational life of the ammunition.

Here’s my take.  I own dozens of magazines, of all types and calibers, fitting all sorts of guns, and I’ve owned most of my Chip McCormick (CMC) 1911 PowerMags for close to twenty years.  I keep all of them loaded, all the time.  When I was cleaning out my house, I found a box of what I first thought was junk (but wasn’t).  At the very bottom, underneath all sorts of stuff like photos and old papers were two 10-round CMC Powermags, loaded.  Judging from the other stuff in the box, I packed it when we lived in suburban Chicago back in the late 1990s, and had never fired the two mags — for twenty years.

With some trepidation, I unloaded them, expecting to find that the last couple of rounds were loose in the magazines — i.e. that the springs had “taken a set” when loaded to capacity and lost their tension.  In both mags, the bottom cartridges were held as tightly against the mag lips as the first round.  So I reloaded them.

The next time I went to the range, I fired off both mags through the Springfield 1911.  Both mags and ammo functioned flawlessly.   I put another ten loads of “new” .45 ACP through each (200 rounds in total) and the mags again worked as though I’d just unwrapped them.

The same has been true of every single magazine I’ve ever owned.  The only time I’ve ever had an issue with a magazine was a cheap one that came with a Taurus .380 pistol — the “second” mag, not the one actually in the gun — and I think it was broken from the start.  Magazine, say hello to Mr. Hammer.

As I said earlier:  all my magazines are loaded, all the time.  An unloaded magazine is just a box with a spring inside, just as an unloaded gun is just a heavy (and expensive) cosh.  Whether they’re .22 LR mags for my Marlin 880SQ rifle, the Mec-Gars for the Browning Hi-Power or the many CMC PowerMags, if I pick one up or take it out of the bag, it’s ready to go.  Even the several AK-47 mags that were tragically lost along with the gun in that canoeing accident were kept loaded.  (As an aside, the mags that absolutely MUST be kept loaded are those that would be needed for your carry- or SHTF guns.)

That has been my experience, and that is my advice.  YMMV.