There is a lot of debate as to which is the best place to purchase a firearm. Should you go to one of the many online gun shops or one of your local gun stores? This seems to be a fairly polarizing argument that should be examined further. Since we are both a local gun store and an online gun shop I thought I would take a look this argument.
I think the optimal place to purchase a firearm is not as cut and dry as most people think and everyone should be asking themselves several questions before moving forward with their next purchase.
Here are a few questions to consider when looking at online gun shops like GrabAGun.com or local gun stores:
1) Have you ever seen or held this firearm prior to making this purchase? It is a good idea to have seen or shot a firearm prior to buying. This will save you a lot of headache and disappointment from buying guns that you don’t really like. Your best bet for a good deal is to browse the local gun stores and gun shows to try and put your hands on the gun before making a purchase. Then compare the prices online to make sure you are getting a good enough deal.
2) Have you looked at all the costs associated with purchasing the firearm? Whether you are looking local or at online gun shops you need to make sure you take into account sales tax, credit card fees, FFL transfer fees and shipping costs. Many online gun shops have great prices but then have hidden credit card fees. Similarly your local gun store will quote you cash prices that do not take into account sales tax. It’s always good to make sure you see every fee up front before making your decision.
3) How quickly do you want this firearm? In a lot of cases you would think your local gun store is the obvious place to go for this. But if you consider that many online gun shops have a much more comprehensive selection of firearms you might be much better off buying online. You should also look at the shipping times for each of the online gun shops to make sure you have an exact understanding of how long it will take to receive your firearm. There are many that hide their shipping times because they may take 7-10 days to ship your firearm. Make sure you have them quote your shipping times up front.
Purchasing firearms from online gun shops or local gun stores should be a fun experience. If you take your time and ask plenty of questions up front you should have a much more enjoyable experience. Good luck!
Handgun Stopping Power 101.1
My previous blog was titled “Handgun Stopping Power 101.” I was able to discus several of the major variables regarding stopping power that should be considered common to all handguns. The topics that I considered for that discussion were: Target Variation, Multiple Hits, Caliber, Bullet Configuration, and Mindset & Training. Each category is a story all by itself. But for now, let’s look at caliber and their respective bullet weights that one should consider when carrying concealed. Of course you realize that what type of gun you choose or what ammo you decide to feed it, is usually based on YOUR beliefs and prejudices concerning what works and what doesn’t work for you…or worse case scenario: What your friends believe works best for you.
Here are my thoughts on the subject of bullet selection based on my personal opinions that have been perfectly aged over time.
Rim fire Ammo. If you carry a rim fire gun, your options are limited in more ways than just bullet type. My personal opinion would be to load your gun with solid points (FMJ). Why? In a word: “Penetration.” You have a better chance of having your FMJ penetrate heavy clothing and muscle if you’re going to have any chance of reaching vital organs. Soft point lead bullets (round nose) are great for targets and hollow points do a great job of dispatching small vermin; and that’s about it as far as I’m concerned. Here comes my caveat: Whether you use FMJ or HP, get a brand that launches it bullet at a minimum of 1250 f.p.s. Right now I’m looking at Winchester’s Supreme 22 LR ammo. It propels a 32 grain plated HP bullet at 1640 f.p.s.…OUCH! That hurts!
One of my favorite axioms concerning mouse guns goes like this: Any gun, in any caliber, is better than your best gun left at home. And that any gun includes the .25ACP, which IMHO is the most inefficient caliber one can use for self defense purposes-- bar none. But its still better than no gun.
.380 ACP: This caliber has become extremely popular for concealed carry. One also has to consider penetration with this caliber, since we are still working with modest velocities. Modest velocities and HP bullets do not play well together. However, with advances in metallurgy, bullet design and gun powder, all of the major ammo manufactures have developed decent HP ammo for the .380; specifically: Remington’s Golden Saber, Speer’s Gold Dot, PMC’s Starfire, Federal’s Hydra-Shok, Winchester’s SXT and Cor-Bon. For anyone out there that has been shooting handguns for more than a month, these brands have become household names.
38 Special: For conceal carry, ammo for the .38 Special will most likely be launched from a two-inch revolver--AKA a snub nose 38 or belly gun. I’m going to assume that your revolver can handle +P ammo. And yes, there is an advantage in shooting +P ammo. Namely, +P ammo is loaded to higher case pressure for increased velocity for a more consistent expansion of hollow-points.
Pressures for .38Spl. +P generate between 17,400 and 18,200 p.s.i. for a 110 grain bullet, and propels its projectile at 1337 f.p.s. Keeping everything constant, the pressure produced for a .38 Spl. will run between 16,000 to 16,500 p.s.i. at approx. 1178 f.p.s. Due to the higher pressures in +P ammo, there use should be restricted to guns rated for +P ammo.
Some alloy frame revolvers can handle these higher pressures. In doubt about how your revolver is rated? Check your gun barrel for the +P sign. If you can’t find it imprinted on your gun, than you’re gun is not rated for the higher pressure. Still not sure? Then try reading your gun owner’s manual. You did keep it, didn’t you?
In standard pressure ammo, it’s generally accepted that the 158 grain SWC cuts equally nice holes in BGs as it does in targets. Hornady offers their XTP bullets in standard and +P loadings. Both loads are excellent choices for your snub nose revolver. The bullet weights that have become the standard bearers for this caliber are as follows: 125 grain SWC or JHP, and the 1585 grain in JHP / JHP+P. Hydra-Shok +P, CCI/Blazer, Starfire, Gold Dot and Golden Saber are also brand names that you can count on to perform well, and they have been doing just that for many years. A word about bullet penetration: the FBI considers a penetration depth of 12 to 18 inches, which is approximately the depth of the human torso. Keep those numbers in mind when you read about a new super loading that boasts a penetration depth of 20+ inches. Why? Think about this scenario, especially if you live in an apartment of if you live in a house with a large family:You shoot BG. Bullet goes through BG. Bullet goes through wall. Bullet goes through neighbor or member of your family. End of ‘think.’
.357 Magnum: If you are planning on shooting one of the new “mini” lite alloy frame or polymer frame .357 Magnum revolvers with full power loads, DON”T. But if you are a masochist looking for a broken wrist, then go for it. The .357 Mag is a great caliber and man stopper when it is platformed on an all steel gun (mass to absorb recoil) with a four inch barrel (more time to burn gun powder to generate velocity). With the new lite .357Magnums, I would look for a reduced recoil load. They have become popular of late for obvious reason. Practice often with target loads to save wear and tear on your lite .357Mag. and save the heavier fodder when you’re out ‘n’ about. This is Win-Win scenario for gun and gun owner.
9MM: The 115 and 124 grain bullet are still considered the best choices for this caliber. For personal protection, I would definitely stay clear of ball ammo. It’s great for plinking and practice, but that’s about it. For personal carry, the 115 grain loading by Speer Gold Dot and Fiocchi’s XTP have received good press. In the 125 grain category we have the same players making excellent commercial loads; namely, Remington’s Golden Saber, Hornady’s FTX, Speer’s Gold Dot and Fiocchi ‘s XTP loads.
.45 Auto: In full size guns, one generally favors the 230 grain offerings by Federal’s Personal Defense HydraShoK JHP or Hornady’s 45 ACP +P. In short barreled pistols, consider Hornady’s 185grain XTP load.
Due to advances in gun powder, you can get good performance from a 200 grain bullet coming out of a short barrel, especially if you are using Cor-Bon’s JHP +P loads. Again, stay away from Ball ammo for personal defense. Fortunately Ball ammo is great for everything else.
And now for my personal opinion: Because I respect the laws of physics, it is my belief that heavier bullets traveling at slow speeds do more damage to the human body than light weight bullets traveling at faster speeds…oops, I didn’t intend to step into this theoretical quagmire, but it is, after all, my belief. However, I do try to keep my opinions well founded in fact and common sense, as opposed to hyperbole and pseudo science. Your opinions might be different than mine, and that’s fine with me. It still is a free country…for now.
I also feel well protected when carrying my S&W Model 13 in .357 Mag. or my Sig P-229 in .357 Sig. You do realize that these two calibers are so similar in terminal performance that it would be difficult for the BG to tell the difference.
Warning: The .357 Sig is carried by our very own Texas State Troopers. So if you should ever meet up with one on the highway, please smile broadly and don’t say anything stupid. OK?
The bottom line to all this is one should shoot a gun / ammo combination that you can control and then shoot it several hundred times to instill confidence in your ability to shoot it quickly and accurately. Stopping power depends on delivering multiple hits to your advisory’s vital organs in the shortest time possible. Near misses don’t count.
Shoot fast. Shoot accurately. Shoot often.
Pax vobiscum (Peace be with you.)
Handgun Stopping Power 101
In my last two blogs I discussed the importance of mouse guns and bigger mouse guns as concealed carry weapons. I also mentioned that the gun manufacturers have given the gun carrying public so many new choices to choose from in size, caliber and format. We now have several options in sub-compact 9mm Luger pistols that have been specifically designed for the concealed carry market. I like to refer to these new offerings as Maxi-Mouse guns. Although they are approaching the physical size of a mouse gun, they are offered in a more substantial caliber—maybe I should have called them “Hybrid 9s.”
It was my intention to discus these gun at this time, but them I imagined someone asking me what they really wanted was a one shot, one-stop no nonsense gun. Well stop looking for the end-all be-all gun because it doesn’t exist in the concealed carry world. Why? Well, for one reason the gun would be large and heavy and not something you would want to carry on your person all day. Another reason is to understand the rudimentary elements of handgun stopping power in order to realize that caliber isn’t the primary factor to consider, although important as it may be. If there ever was a topic that was more heatedly discussed than handgun stopping power, I can’t imagine what it would be.
One of the reasons that so many people view this topic differently is that they fail to realize that the sidearm is a defensive weapon; the rifle / shotgun are offensive weapons. In other words, the sidearm (regardless of format) is a get-me-out-of-trouble weapon; the long gun is a run-to-trouble weapon. Only in the movies does the hero carry a nickel plated 1911 with unlimited ammo capacity with the power to stop the BG (bad guy) in his tracts at 100 yards with one shot. In the real world, the GG (good guys) go into battle with automatic rifles with red dot sights for CQB (close quarter battle) situations. Yes, our solders still carry side arms, but not as their primary weapon. But the civilian population doesn’t have that choice. For us, the sidearm is our primary weapon. And for many others, the mouse gun is their only option for defense due to their particular needs and shooting abilities. Our daily carry sidearm isn’t as potent a weapon as we think it is. It is, and always has been, a CQB weapon.
If you knew you would be facing a trio of ugly BGs in the mall parking lot, and you were give a choice of weapons, which would you choose: a) 12 gauge shotgun loaded with 00 Buck, or b) any handgun of your choice?
I would choose option a) 12 gauge shotgun with 00Buck…4Buck works for me, too. Why option a)? Because of its greater STOPPING POWER over your day-to-day sidearm? That’s why! But either option is better than no option--holding air in your hands is not an acceptable tool for surviving a bad confrontation.
Now that I have established that your side arm is a get me out of trouble gun, let’s agree that mouse guns and maxi mouse guns are different peas in the same pod, but share similar traits. This way what we say about one caliber can generally be said about all of the common calibers. OK!? Oops. There is one more caveat to cover; that is to lump the two major velocity camps into one camp for discussion purposes only. You know that there are those who believe that a heavy projectile (.45ACP) moving at approx. 850 fps is more effective than a light projectile (9mm) moving at plus 1200fps. This is an interesting topic, but we can kick that can down the road at another time. Right now I just want to put all the theories into one camp so we can have a general discussion on handgun stopping power. OK? Let’s briefly look at some of the major variables regarding stopping power that’s common to all handguns.
Target Variation. Most data regarding bullet penetration and expansion is based on a block of ballistic gelatin, which in theory is similar to swine tissue because it closely resembles human tissue. However, the human body is an entity unto itself. When you consider the overall human physiology and its ability to absorb shock when under severe stress, you soon realize how difficult it would be to design a gun and cartridge combination that one can carry concealed all day and that would work one-hundred percent of the time as a one shot man stopper.
Multiple Hits. Handgun stopping power largely depends on your bullet hitting major vessels and /or vital organs; namely the brain, heart, and lungs. What you want to achieve is incapacitation through multiple hits in the shortest time possible. This will causes shock waves within the body causing it to shut down. Projectiles that just go through the body without hitting at least one major organ will not produce the shock waves needed to end the confrontation. Yes. The BG might eventually die from a loss of blood, but eventually may not be soon enough to save your life.
Caliber. I’m not going to favor one caliber over another, but I will say that it should be considered. After all, calibers with greater mass will produce more felt recoil for you to handle along with a corresponding slower follow-up time to your next shot. If you miss your target with a large bore caliber you accomplished nothing. Yet two or three hits with a .380 ACP should create enough discomfort to your adversary for you to make your escape. Dare I say that hits from a small caliber are more important than close misses from a larger caliber?
Bullet configuration: FMJ or HP or SWC. Hollow points aren’t always your best option. A HP that doesn’t expand is nothing more than an odd looking full metal jacket or even an odder semi-wad cutter bullet. A hollow point that expands but doesn’t hit anything of importance (bone or a vital organ) isn’t that much better than a FMJ or SWC bullet. Regardless of which bullet you use, you want to hit vital organs with multiple shoots in rapid succession to cause as much shock waves and physiological damage as possible.
Mindset & Training. One can talk about guns and ballistic and which caliber is best until cats bark and dogs meow and still accomplish nothing of value. It all boils down more to proper training and mindset than it does to caliber (with in reason, of course). In a nut shell it’s all about proper shot placement (hitting vital organs) followed up by multiple shots to disrupt one’s central nervous system to shut it down as quickly as possible. Several small caliber bullets placed strategically to your adversaries’ body has always been a deadly combination. Even a single .22 LR rimfire discharged between your eyes will drop you like the proverbial sack of potatoes.
PRACTICE PROVEN CQB TECHNIQUES AND SURVIVE
Pax vobiscum (Peace be with you.)
Mouse Guns and Bigger Mouse Guns
I ended my last blog with these words: “My final thoughts on mouse guns: If you can handle and hide something bigger, please do.” Obviously those weren’t my final thoughts on mouse guns and I’m not sure that this blog will fair any better. The topic of small to very small pocket handguns is, if I may say so without sounding melodramatic, a matter of life and death to the CHL holder if he or she ever finds themselves in their worse case scenario.
To those unfamiliar with the term “mouse gun,” it’s generally defined as a small gun (many being palm size) that delivers its projectile at a much lower energy level (ft.-lbs.) than traditional duty/personal carry guns, such as the 38 SP., 357Mag.,.357Sig, 9mm, .40 S&W, 44Sp., 44Mag., and the .45ACP. For those individuals who require numbers to put all this in its proper perspective, consider this: Let’s agree upon a top value of 130 ft-lb.of muzzle energy for mouse guns and a bottom value of 195 ft-lbs of muzzle energy for conventional carry guns. This leaves the 380 ACP (the bigger mouse gun) in the middle of this power curve, and that’s exactly where it should be. With +P ammo, muzzle energy from a 38 Sp. snub nose revolver can easily reach 220 ft-lbs. Now when you consider the muzzle energy from the other conventional carry guns run somewhere between 290 and 500 ft.-lbs. of muzzle energy (excluding the 44 Mag, of course) you begin to realize why a mouse gun is what it is, namely a last ditch weapon…a just in case gun and nothing more. Nevertheless when you consider being in a bad situation without a gun, you soon realize that even a mouse gun can significantly improve your odds of survival. Without one my money is on the BG. And that’s a bet I never want to place on anyone.
So now we know what all the hoopla is about and why there so many 22WMR, 32ACP, and 380ACP (the Bigger mouse gun) being made by every major gun manufacturer know to mankind. Because when you can’t carry a “real” gun you should always carry one of these small, light weight, and easily concealable mouse guns--especially when you think you won’t need one. If you carry one with you all the time, you’ll have a better than 50-50 chance of surviving the “wrong place-wrong time” scenario. After all, not even the BG wants to get shoot with a gun—any gun!
So what’s out there in the wonderful world of mouse guns and bigger mouse guns? There is a whole lot to consider because the choices are almost endless. Again, for those of you who have never thought of the concept of carrying small, start thinking about it and then go out and buy one…better yet, buy two.
Here’s a brief run down on what’s available to you…
North American Arms makes some mighty mouse guns. In fact, one of their guns has caught my eye and interest. It the NAA Pug. The company characterizes the Pug as multum in parvo (“much in little”). If that doesn’t describe the mouse gun in three words, Latin or otherwise, than I don’t know what will. The Pug is chambered for the mighty 22WMR. Marshall and Sanow (Handgun Stopping Power: The Definitive Study) gave this caliber a 42 percent one-shot stop rating when this caliber was propelled down a standard size gun. Imagine that! Of course the Pug only has a one inch barrel so velocities / energy / stopping power will be somewhat diminished. The Pug is a five shooter and weighs 6.4 ounces with an Overall Length of 4 ½’’; an Overall Height of 2 ¾ ’’; and an Overall Width of 7/8’’. (I can’t imagine anyone leaving this gun at home when they run out late at night for a pizza.) NAA also makes other models in 22WMR. Their “Earl” quickly comes to mind and leaves just as quickly, only because it has a 4 inch barrel, which is too long for a mouse gun, but just right for a fun gun. Are these NAA mini 22 WMR versions the Mighty Mouse of mouse guns? Could be? If you needs are closer to a 380 ACP semi-auto, NAA offers that too in their Guardian model.
In short order, here are other small and mighty guns to consider:
Seecamp LWS .32 ACP. If you know anything about gun manufacturers, than you don’t need to know anything else about Seecamp. Whether you purchase their .32ACP or their .380 ACP, you are purchasing one of the finest mouse guns in this genre. The OAL of their .32ACP is 4.25inches and weighs 11.5 ounces.
Beretta has been offering their“Tomcat” for many years. At first it was available as a .25 ACP, but got upgraded to .32 ACP in 1997 as the Model 3030Tomcat.
Some 380s to consider: The Rohrbaugh R380. This is without a doubt the most expensive 380 to be had, but one that is well made and ready to go right out of the box. It’s a class act.
Kel-Tec P3AT. This is the lightest 380 at 8.3 ounces. Like all guns, none are perfect. There is always the “why did they do it that way?” question that we all eventually ask ourselves. Nevertheless, I own two P3ATs. You need two if your going to do a “New York” reload when the chips are down. Why I have two identical guns as opposed to two different 380s, and what’s a New York reload, will all be explained when this topic comes up in a future blog.
Magnum Research of Desert Eagle fame also has a 380 in play called the Magnum Research Micro Desert Eagle and weighs in at 14 ounces.
Kahr P380 is similar in size to the other 380s and weighs less than 10 ounces.
The Sig Sauer offering is something like a baby 1911 since you can carry it “cocked and locke.” It weighs 15.8 ounces.
Ruger has two offerings to consider:The LCPistol in 380 ACP at 9.4 ounces and LCRevolver in 38Sp. at 13.5 ounces.
The offerings are almost limitless. With so many options available to you in size, weight, composition and caliber, you can’t go wrong no matter which camp you decide to go with. Competition in the concealed carry market is stiff. But with an almost unlimited market to play in manufacturers have realized that there’s gold in concealable handguns regardless of caliber or format. Fortunately for the CHL holder, gun manufacturers have now turned their resources into designing small 9mm autos. When you consider such models as Kimber’s Solo, Kel-Tec’s PF-9, Taurus’ PT 809 C, Ruger’s SRC, and others models not mentioned, you realize that your options to carry concealed are only limited by your imagination and determination to do so.
So keeping with the mouse gun and bigger mouse gun concept, if you find yourself in a worse case scenario, remember that SMALLER is BIGGER and mouse guns can truly roar like a lion when cornered.
Pax vobiscum (Peace be with you.)
CHL and Mouse Guns
This is the third in a series of articles that should be of particular interest to CHL holders. My first article was on the necessity of obtaining a CHL in today’s world, along with some of my basic convictions that one should consider when carrying concealed.
The second article, and to my mind, the most important subject to CHL holdersis is the legal aspect of carrying—both before and after a shooting. You never want to be in the unenviable position of discharging your weapon and saying: OMG. What happens now?
It would be wise to keep in mind that CHL could also be read as Carry Hidden and Legal.
This article is about mouse guns. So what’s a mouse gun? No bunko, it’s not a gun for shooting mice, chipmunks, or any other critter that can be weighed on a postal scale. A mouse gun is one of small caliber but not necessarily in a small frame. Some mouse guns are as big and of sufficient weight to be classified as heavy weights, and there in lies the rub. Actually there are three rubs to consider when choosing your personal carry weapon; regardless of what category you might put it in; namely: Caliber, Size, and Weight. These criteria’s must be carefully measured against your strengths and weaknesses if you’re serious about carrying daily. A gun that is too heavy or to big or to powerful for you to handle is a gun that you will leave at home more often than not and that is a rub that can, if you pardon the pun, get you rubbed out. The solution to this conundrum is simple: You need more than one carry gun. And one of those guns will, out of necessity, be a mouse gun.
Mouse gun calibers are all of the rim fire cartridges, 25ACP, 32 ACP (AKA 7.65mm Browning) and all antique cartridges, such as the 32 S&W, 32 S&W Long, and all other calibers that fall under the power curve of the 38Sp. It was not to long ago that the.380 ACP was also in the mouse gun category. But due to the advancements in metallurgy and propellants, the .380 has had a status upgraded. It is now considered by many to be the minimum caliber one should carry as an every day carry gun. In fact, there are many gun writers today that believe that the 38 Special should be your minimum carry caliber. In reality, and to put in plain and simple language, the minimum caliber that one should carry will vary from day-to-day and from month-to-month. In other words, what gun you’ll be carrying during the winter months is not going to be the same gun that you’ll carry in the summer months. And that’s good. Now you have sufficient justification to purchase more than one gun. And that’s a nice place to be. If I knew that my day would end badly, I would carry a sawed-off 12 gauge shotgun; but I’ve been told that it isn’t considered PC to do so in polite society. This is why mouse guns and other alternative carry options, such as Kimber’s Pepperblaster II have become vital additions to add to one’s personal protection arsenal.
On of the more popular mouse guns available today is the 32ACP, and one of the smallest guns in this caliber is the Kel-TEC P-32. With a 7+1 capacity and an AOL (over all length) of 5.1 inches, and a 6.6 ounce frame, it is more than likely to be left in one’s pocket as opposed to being left on the kitchen table. A step up from this cartridge is the .32 H&R (Harrington & Richardson) Magnum. This caliber works nicely in theTaurus 731 Ultra-Lite DA (double action) Revolver. The Taurus 731 weighs17 ounce with an OAL of 6.5 inches. The .32 H&R Magnum propels an 85 grain bullet to a muzzle energy of 237 ft-lbs. This is a nice increase over the .32ACP, which propels a 71 grain bullet to a muzzle energy of only128 ft-lbs. We can make a quantum leap in muzzle energy (334 and 435 ft-lbs depending on load used) when we go to the Ruger SP101 revolver in .32 Federal Magnum; but the leap is so great that it propels this cartridge out of the mouse gun category and into the full frame category. The Ruger SP 101 has an OAL of 8 Inches and weighs 28 ounces, which is bigger than many .357 Magnums and too similar in size to many .45ACP semi-auto pistols. This gun is definitely not a mouse gun, regardless of the criteria you wish to judge it by.
Let’s get back on course…mouse guns are by definition dimensional small, light weight guns of minimal caliber. A gun that can’t be dropped into your pocket and forgotten until needed is not a mouse gun but rather a serious carry gun. When your mouse gun starts to look more like a S&W 340 M&P (Military & Police) .38/.357 revolver with a carry weight of 13.3 ounces and an OAL of 6.3 inches, it’s time to reconsider your mouse gun requirements; that is, if you have any at all.
Now that you’re carrying a mouse gun, have you thought about tactics? It’s a MOUSE GUN bunko…it’s not a go to war gun. It’s a get out of a bad situation weapon. It’s your “Mae West” and that in it self is a comforting thought.
Mouse gun Tactics (Good advice for any CHL holder to heed)
- If you are in a situation that is going bad, get a grip on you mouse gun quickly, if not sooner.
- Do not draw your concealed weapon until absolutely necessary.
- Absolutely necessary for me is when the Bad Guy (BG) is within three to four yards and closing.
- If possible exit the situation before it escalates into a shooting match. Don’t start the confrontation. Remember that you are holding a mouse gun and not a Glock, Sig, S&W, or customized 1911.
- Stay calm…draw from a concealed position or when the BG isn’t looking your way.
- No preamble to shooting like “Make my day.” If you must shoot, then shoot and shoot and shoot until the BG is down.
- And my favorite piece of advice…Pray to God for guidance that all will end well for you and for all the innocent people that have walked into a bad situation. And also pray that your attorney is not vacationing in the Keys when you pull the trigger.
If any of you are wondering what mouse guns Scorpio carries, wonder no more. I carry a .22 WMR High Standard Derringer, two Kel-Tec P3ATs, and the Kimber Pepperblaster. And I’m still looking for another mouse gun that can fulfill my particular requirements.
My final thoughts on mouse guns: If you can handle and hide something bigger, please do. But always keep in mind that any gun is better than no gun at all. Forget what you have in your gun safe; when you need a gun, you need it NOW. Hence, the popularity of the mouse gun prevails and always will prevail wherever and whenever a small defense weapon is the only option open to you.
Pax vobiscum (Peace be with you)
CHL –The legal side
In my last blog I mentioned the necessity of obtaining a CHL if one is prepared to be responsible for his or her own safety. For me having a CHL falls under the category of self preservation. A subject that has been in the forefront of my thinking ever since my mother stopped dressing me, and I began to realize that I was, and always will be the first responder to my clarion call for “under attack--need immediate assistance.” If you are to be your own first responder, than what I have to say concerning every facet of concealed carry, including what happens after you have discharged your weapon, and especially if you killed your aggressor, should provide you with much food for thought and reflection.
Although the majority of us strive to give trouble a wide berth, we realize that in this very mobile society trouble often finds us simply because we were in the wrong place at the wrong time. Unfortunately much of this is based on Murphy’s Law. For those of you who just landed on this planet, the expression goes like this: Whatever can go wrong will go wrong, and at the worst possible time, in the worst possible way. I’ve heard many a wise person, namely military personnel; say that they believed that Murphy’s Law was one of optimism…Always prepare for the worst and pray for the best.
We are going to prepare for the worst by starting out at worst case scenario…you have just been involved in a righteous(of course) shooting. From there we’ll go backwards to cover such topics as: firearms (including mouse guns), personal protection ammo, holsters and almost holsters, clothing, environment awareness, and practical shooting exercises.
Pop Quiz: I ended my last blog with this question: ‘Should I retrain a lawyer before I leave my house armed?’ Answer: Y-E-S! It’s called having insurance incase of an accident. We think nothing of spending thousands of dollars each year on life, fire, home, car, etc, insurance; so why not purchase an “Out of Jail” insurance card? I have one, and I hope I never have to use it. But I like having that warm fuzzy feeling knowing that I’ve covered myself on both ends of a righteous shooting.
From the outset let me say that I am not an attorney nor do I posses legal or actual experience in this field. In other words, I have never shot anyone, and therefore I have never had to deal with the authorities or our judicial system. And although I have had close encounters of the wrong kind, it was real world knowledge, combined with the proper mind set that got me safely through a situation that could have turned out otherwise. I have always found it wiser to learn from those individuals that have blazed a path upon which I can safely travel. They have enabled me to stand on their shoulders and look through their eyes so that I may avoid the traps and pitfalls that have befallen many a good person that did not have proper legal guidance. Being right doesn’t always win the day. And we all know that bad things can happen to good people, especially if they are totally ignorant of the law or who lack the common sense (knowledge) to keep their bloody mouths shut by forgetting that any thing that they say can truly be used against you. Take a hint from one of the popular defense posters from WWII: “Loose lips sink ships. It still is good advice seventy-one years later, and especially in today’s litigious society.
By now you should realize that this topic is one in which you better get control of before you have to pull the trigger; because after the event, you don’t want to hear a voice in your head saying: “What do I do now?”
If you should get into a justified shooting and you do not have access to legal counsel, please keep the following advice in mind. It comes from a Self-Defense Guideline Card that crossed my path many years ago. The author / source are unknown. But the advice is consistent to what is given today. I would seriously take it to heart.
If you have been involved in a shooting incident, the following steps should be taken but only after you are completely sure there is no longer a threat.
- Secure the weapon the assailant used. Check yourself for injuries. Make a complete check of the scene, however, don’t tamper with any evidence. If the person shot is no longer a threat try to help him. Do not talk to him or use abusive language. Don’t touch the assailant if he appears to be dead. Don’t let anyone else handle any evidence.
- Call the police as soon as possible. Tell them what has taken place, and your location. Ask for emergency medical assistance. Don’t give too many details of the incident over the phone. Put your weapon away, and keep it out of sight. Innocent people have been shot by the police because they were holding weapons when the officers arrived. Try to spot them first and attract them in a non-threatening manner. At first the police may treat you like a suspect, especially if you have a weapon. Do as you are told. Do not question or argue with them.
- Call your lawyer. Make no statements to the police or anyone else until your attorney is present. He should meet you at the scene if possible. Tell him exactly what happened and let him do the talking for you. If you must meet the police by yourself, be sure not to make any statements. Explain to the police politely, but firmly, that you don’t want to talk until your attorney arrives. Keep in mind that anything you say can, and will, be used against you.
- When the Paramedics arrive get medical treatment for shock for yourself and any other person involved whether physically injured or not.
- Stay away from the news media. Never talk or make any sort of statement to them. Let your attorney make any statement for you. Remember, the news media has NO authority.
- Legal actions. You are justified in using lethal force only if you “feared for your life” or that of another person. Don’t apologize for defending yourself. Avoid statements such as “I’m sorry I had to shoot.” “I regret the incident happened.” Such statements are equated with feeling of guilt. You are remorseful therefore your actions are inappropriate. Such statement can cost you later on in a court of law.
- Stress. Persons involved in shooting incidents face a great amount of stress. Psychological problems sometimes appear, and even physical ones such as sleeplessness, headaches, and diarrhea and heart problems. These problems are common and affect even trained law enforcement officers. If you encounter any of these problems, seek professional help.
Remember: Loose lips sink ships. So please don’t shoot your self in the foot by doing your Clint Eastwood impression for the crowd or the police. Let common sense prevail. Are you reflecting?
Pax vobiscum (Peace be with you.)
All, I want to introduce a new blog contributor and fellow firearms enthusiast "Scorpio". He has been buying and shooting guns for over 60 years and has a lot of great knowledge. He will be contributing to our blog on a regular basis so please come back and feel free to read post your own comments!
The Virtues of the Revolver
When I open my gun safe my eyes fall upon several categories of guns and their various subcategories, somewhat in the same way that we breakdown vehicles into two broad groups: trucks (and their sub groups) and passenger vehicles (and their sub groups). A major handgun category that I would like to comment on is the revolver. A group that I believe has a lot to offer but has been overlooked by new and younger shooters due to the popularity of the Wonder Nines and their ilk.
One of the great virtues of the revolver is that it is consistently reliable. Well maybe no gun is consistently reliable; after all it’s a mechanical device and therefore subject to malfunction. But for me the revolver comes as close to being one hundred percent reliable one hundred percent of the time. It is a weapon that can not only be counted upon to fire when asked to, but also extremely simple to operate and therefore does not require a complicated manual of arms to master.
Should you ever need to use your revolver to protect yourself and/or your family, you’ll want SIMPLE to OPERATE to be synonymous with AIM and squeeze. A revolver has no safeties to disengage, no slides to rack, no magazines to insert (and then feel obligated to “tap the heel” to ensure that it is properly seated), and most importantly there are no magazines to lose. No magazine. No gun.
You also do not have to concern your self with a plethora of causes on why your semi-auto failed to fire, especially if you are in the wrong place at the wrong time. If your revolver doesn’t fire, pull the trigger again. Hearing a click when you want to hear a bang can be a deafening sound of the wrong kind. Without stovepipes to fret about and with no “what-to-do-now” procedures to memorize, you have freed yourself for more important matters to ponder…like surviving. A revolver can even be fired from inside your COAT pocket, with the emphasis being on COAT pocket and not pant pocket. It can even be fired when flush up against your adversary’s body—something a semi-auto can’t do, at least not more than once. Remember that with a revolver you need only to Draw, Aim, Fire (hear bang) and re-holster.
Another important virtue of the revolver is that it is NOT ammo sensitive like many semi-autos can be. If you can shove the proper cartridge into the revolver’s cylinder you’re good-to-go. A revolver will shoot snake loads, target loads, and full power defense loads with equal aplomb. Most semi-autos (if not all) are somewhat ammo sensitive. I know from practical experience that my .22 semi-auto is very ammo sensitive. Fortunately what it likes to digest can be bought at Wal-Mart. And what it doesn’t like to digest I run through my revolver. Don’t you just love it when there is an easy fix close at hand?
A very important plus for the revolver is that it can be kept loaded indefinitely. There are no springs to stress like there is in a magazine. Yes, I know that magazines can be kept fully depressed for years without any ill effect. But I don’t know anyone who feels comfortable doing it. I know I don’t. It must be the fear of having your magazine fatigued at the wrong time. No fear of that happening with a magazine-less revolver.
If you need to check your revolver to see if it is loaded, just open the cylinder or look in the cylinder gap for brass cartridge rims. You also have the added bonus in knowing that after you’ve check the cylinder for ammo, there isn’t a round hiding in the breech. This type of error can be easily made with a semi-auto with serious consequences.
You can customize the grips on a revolver a whole lot easier than on a semi-auto. You can go from small J-frame style grips to large target grips in every material known to mankind…or just make your own grips if you think you need another hobby.
Do you reload? If you do then you won’t have to look far to find your brass because they are all in your cylinder just waiting to be plucked out. It doesn’t get much easier than that, does it?
Yes, it does. Especially if you think it’s important to clean your gun after every shooting session. It’s an axiom of mine that ‘A clean gun is a happy gun. And a happy gun owner is one that has an easy gun to clean.’ Revolvers are easy to clean because there are no parts to disassemble so there are no parts to loose or springs to spring away as can happen with semi-autos. So with little free time to spare these days, having an easy gun to clean is welcomed. This is a win-win situation for gun and gun owner. What more can you ask of any gun?
I’m sure there are many of you saying that I purposely overlooked a major flaw in the revolver: namely its inability to hold more than six rounds while the wonder nines can hold up to 18 rounds. Balderdash I say. Watch for my future comments on why I don’t feel under gunned while carrying my six-shoot Colt Detective Special as well as my views concerning the virtues of the semi-auto pistol.
So as I walked through the Shot Show in Vegas I happened by the Mossberg booth and stopped in. Everyone loves to own and play with the pistol grip and tactical shotguns they manufacture. There is something cool about owning a shotgun that you can hide under your bed, coat or truck seat and pull out like the Terminator and start blasting away. Not that many of us get to do any of that but it is always nice to know you can if you had to.
So as I was looking at the new items I noticed a small crowd around one in particular. It was a pistol grip Mossberg 500 called "The Chainsaw". I have attached an image below so you can see what I am talking about. It many ways its like all the other Mossberg pump's with the exception of one major difference. There is a large "chainsaw" handle attached to the pump so you can pump it from the top vs. the bottom. To me it looks closer to my weed-eater handle but "Mossberg Weed-eater" sounds pretty bad so I can see why they went with "Chainsaw".
My real question is what in the hell would you do with it? There is no advantage of pumping a shotgun from the top vs. the bottom as far as I can tell. All I can think is someone might purchase this because it looks like a weapon that would be used in Halo or Gears of War. Don't get me wrong I'm sure its still fun to shoot, but it just seems like an odd item to purchase with some many other options out there. Once its available I will make sure to stock some of these in case any of you need to channel your inner "Terminator".
I am dying to see what other people think about this gun. I would also like to know if anyone knows of any other guns that look as ridiculous as this one.
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