RIFLEMAN'S JOURNAL - JUNE 2006


May 2006 | JUNE 2006 | July 2006
1170 - Thursday, 1 June 2006:

omg
omg
omg
WOO
HOOOOOOOO!!!!

Way back on 3 May, Tucson Tom the Arizona Cruffler, a reader of this journal,

PRAISE BE UNTO HIM,

offered to

DONATE!
A!!
GARAND!!!

I didn't 'blog a byte of this until she was here in the hovel in my hands. I'm still not entirely sure I'm not hallucinating the whole thing. My inbox is going to be backed up for the next few days as I get acquainted with her. 'Kay?

Here's the basics though: SA, #5,85x,xxx, barrel marked SA F653xxxx 4 55 MD 50, and some Greek graffiti carved in the wood and big blue numerals painted on the butt. I was told this would be a "rack grade" Garand and it is - the butt plate is a little concave where it shouldn't be, one of the front sight wings is closer to vertical than originally intended, the wood probably came from three different rifles - but it's a GARAND! For a $20 transfer at LL Guns in Battleground!

omg omg omg omg omg.

No, I won't be using her in the match this Saturday, I need to get to know her first. Lots of sites already bookmarked to help with that. Besides I'm already signed up for one of the club's rifles, which will, frankly, be in better shape, or at least a better-known quantity.

But I don't care if I end up replacing everything but the receiver because now I have one.

o. m. g.

And I'll need a bayonet (reproduction 16" models are available) and a cartridge belt and the tools and parts and the grenade launching attachment and a complete WWII US infantryman's outfit and a 1911A1 and and and.... It did come in a CMP box with the complete CMP kit, consisting of a nicely-detailed and -illustrated CMP manual, a CMP Open Bolt Indicator, a nylon sling, one clip, and brochures from Fulton Armory and Dean's Gun Restorations.

OMG!!!

One other note: Mr. R. has not responded to my email asking if he had more non-corrosive M2 Ball he'd be willing to sell, so I'll be making my own with the aforementioned Sierra 5th Edition 2,700fps data. So, after driving from work in Hillsboro directly to LL Guns in Battleground, I then drove all the way down to Sportsman's Warehouse in Clackamas, where there is indeed a space on the shelf for CCI #34 military large rifle primers ($1.99 per tray of 100) - and that space was empty. (Staff said "half the reloading aisle" is hard to get at present due to military demands. They did have at least a dozen trays of #41 small rifle primers though, same price.) Inquired with helpful and knowledgeable staff for an alternative, and it was suggested that the ordinary CCI #200 standard large rifle primer should be safe to use in the Garand. So tomorrow I'll be whipping up a batch of that in the LC brass saved from the last Garand match in September.

OMG!!!

Is this a great country or what?

1171 - Friday, 2 June 2006: Starting to load the .30-06. And the CCI #200 primer in the Lee Auto-Prime is Not Going Into the primer pocket of LC67-69 brass despite using the chamfer tool to remove, so I thought, the ring crimp. I might need an actual swaging tool here. So before something bad happens I'll switch to the Remington brass I've collected, which is also already processed. -And the primers go into that just fine. Discussing the problem with Sportsman's Warehouse staff yesterday I got the idea that, theoretically, pressures may be slightly lower using civilian brass, as opposed to thicker military cases which have, theoretically (Sierra's manual mentions it), a slightly lower volume, so there, theoretically, is another safety factor. Taking extra care to ensure I have no high primers.

Won $42.20 in Wednesday's MegaBucks drawing! There's my match fee (rent check in the mail, direct deposit okay, another paycheck in the pipeline, I've made it through another bout of unemployment), and maybe one shrimp ring and about a half-gallon of gas (local ARCO holding at $2.97; one Shell and one Mobil near the library holding at $2.92). Of course I've spent far more than that on losing tickets in the past year, but hey, it's cheaper than Prozac and healthier than booze.

Beginning to explore the Queen's inner workings. John C. Garand... was a bit of a loon. And I'm not entirely referring to when he lined his sunken living-room with plastic, filled it with water, froze it, and went ice-skating for hours in his own house. John C. ain't John M., surely. But it works. The world needs loons of that sort.

Okay, the gas cylinder is loose relative to the barrel, and the front sight is mounted on the gas cylinder, so that will affect accuracy. Trigger group, bolt, and op-rod all marked SA, as is barrel and receiver - I'm far less concerned with historical correctness than with performance, I want the Queen to speak. One thing I don't like is that she can't be cleaned from the breech. Well-oiled, no rust, but some pitting, particularly on the gas cylinder, and finish wear in the expected places - the Greeks used her hard, but cared for her as well as could be expected. (She is at least 49 years old after all, and has served two nations so far.)

These are not complaints but observations. I need her, at long last I have a true battle rifle! I simply need to determine what help she needs, and provide it.

(OMG! A $20 Garand!)

Bore cleans up nice, no problem there. Decent trigger, though not as crisp as the one I used in the match in September, some creep in the second stage - okay, a very little tiny bit of creep that I don't always notice even. So far, nothing I can't conceive of fixing, except possibly the gas cylinder/splines thing. One thought that occurs to me is to peen the spline grooves on the outer surface of the barrel, to better grab the splines below the front sight - and web research reveals that a lot of people do exactly that. I can get a punch to do that from the hardware store down the street.... Another search suggests that the rear sight may be fixed with as little as a new spring cover. And some play in the front handguard appears to be normal, even desireable.

First sis is coming down next weekend; Barberton show early Saturday, PIG less early, and I notice that the huge Expo Center show, absolutely sure to have buckets of Garand parts and literally tons more of interest, is the same weekend. Haven't been to Expo in at least a year - crowds, blueshirts, parking, admi$$ion - but with sis visiting and the Queen needing parts it'll be worth it.

1172 - Saturday, 3 June 2006: Match Daaaayyy! Taking 50 rounds handload: 46.3gr IMR4895 (which meters adequately in an RCBS Uniflow, compared to IMR4064), Remington case, CCI #200 primer, Hornady 150gr FMJBT seated to cannelure. I should have got a Lee .30-06 factory crimp die at Sportsman's Warehouse while I was there but spaced it, and the old Wells seating die appears to not have a roll-crimp shoulder, though I adjusted it ‘til there was some resistance without the seating punch installed and maybe I have a bit of taper crimp. Additionally, taking one 48-round bandolier each of DEN42 and KA73, but those are both corrosive. Also taking MojoVZ, which I'll use in the PIG next weekend. -I'll have sis bring the Mojo91/30 and the rounds I made, in case there's a second relay, perhaps I can borrow it - I know that rifle is accurate.

After the PIG my next match will be the Garand match in September, in which I'll have my own Garand, and the Allies vs. Axis in November, in which I'll have an American rifle for the Allied side.

First relay, first stage, slow prone, 15 in 15 minutes, worst five counted as sighters - 95/2X! I think I'll stick with this load. I got the same rifle as in September, Springfield #3.85 million, if sis tries this I'll try to get her the same rifle.

What a rifle! I see why we won the war:

Rapid-prone - and I blew it! 27/0X! But I console myself with the knowledge that I can hit stuff with a Garand at 200 yards, and with the relatively tight grouping:

Standing - 46/0X, three misses, no photo. But I hadn't practiced. I certainly can't blame the rifle, or my handloads, after that performance in slow-prone. Total 168/2X of a possible 300, I am out of medal contention, but I had a really good slow-prone stage, I got out of the hovel, I had fun, I didn't get M1 Thumb, I even helped a new shooter who was struggling with a CAI FrankenGewehr. (It wasn't cycling in the rapid-prone stage, nor always ejecting, nor often locking open, in the single-loaded slow stages - directed him to club CMP guy, far more familiar with M1 guts than I, for advice. It seemed accurate enough though.)

Zero malfunctions with the club Springfield, zero mishaps with my handloads. So I have a .30-06 load now. I'll try Sierra FMJBTs in future though, on principle.

There are typically four highpower matches per year that I attend at my club: spring and autumn Garand, the PIG, and the AvA. Now that I have my own Garand I can stick with one rifle and get really good with it for all four of those. Furthermore, now that I have my own M1, there are other Garand matches at other clubs where I can continue to develop and test my skill. Awakening the Queen is now my top hoplological priority.

Stayed after for some Mauser practice - the VZ acts like the barrel droops when hot, by some minutes of angle. (The long WWI bayonet I use for the bonus points probably has something to do with that....) I'll probably have to borrow the 91/30 back from sis for any hope of a medal. The Queen will not be ready in time, alas - and I have no idea how she'll perform anyway.

Latest gossip on the English Pit range: one of the reasons the crotchety R/O was fired, resulting in the closing of the range, was his intolerance for people who cannot understand English (specifically ex-Soviets - hey, they could look like Milla Jovovich, but Third World is as Third World does, and some of these Russians and Ukranians and Elsewherians are just as much uncivilized third-worlders as any Mexican or Arab immigrant). And crotchety as he was I have to agree with him - if you can't understand the range officer's commands and can't read the basic safety rules posted everywhere, it's a safety hazard. More gossip: the English family deeded the land to Clark County for the sole purpose of it being a shooting range, and if it stops being a shooting range, the land goes back to the family. Naturally the County claims to not be able to find the relevant paperwork....

Vancouver ARCO $2.94! Topped off. Tucson Tom, some days ago, sent this:

Stopped at Brightwater Ventures, a little hole-in-the-wall arms shop in Vancouver (Orchards) - no Garand parts, no military primers, but I did splurge on a Lee Factory Crimp Die for 7.62x39mm, $5 in the clearance box. And it came with three more cases!

Meanwhile, the Constitution Party is rumored to be offering Mary Starrett, a former area radio & TV personality and sister of OFF chief Kevin (I hadn't known that), as candidate for Governor of Oregon (on a pure pro-life platform). On a weekend rerun of the Lars Larson show, Lars is unhappy, fearing that Mary ("a wonderful conservative") is not capable of winning in this commiefied state and will instead be a mere spoiler for (RINO....) Saxton.

...Shrug. ...Sigh.

Email is backed up but I am reading it. One reader expresses Profound Jealousy at my astonishingly good fortune and hopes I get M1 Thumb! :) Another suggests I try her before making any adjustments to see what happens - and I'll do that, with the 15 rounds left in the batch I loaded last night, after the PIG next Saturday, and sis can try her too. Another says the 16" bayonet is not worth it and a 10" Danish model would be a better deal.

From the lists, Oleg Volk's still at it, and has also taken notice of the Blueshirt Problem. Buy his artwork.

Still exploring the Queen's innards. It appears to me that the op-rod functions as 1) the charging handle, 2) positive chambering, 3) the gas piston, 4) the bolt carrier, 5) the recoil spring guide, and 6) the locator for the other end of the magazine spring (which happens to also be the recoil spring). The inside of John C. Garand's head must have been a fascinating place.

Ah, I think I found the offical site for the factory where my P35, and its Commander-size upper, were made.

Sarco's Garand parts page.

Seen on a forum:


"If you don't understand weapons you don't understand fighting. If you don't understand fighting you don't understand war. If you don't understand war you don't understand history. And if you don't understand history you might as well live with your head in a sack." - Colonel Jeff Cooper
Seen on the lists, re: stupid cops:
There was a guy at my station, once upon a time, who ran his Beretta 96 through the dishwasher after dropping the mag and locking the slide back, after a re-qual. By the time he went to re-qualify (3 months later) the innards of the gun were rusted together and the gun had to be destroyed.
I was just reminded of the lady cop I heard about that washed her plastic fantastic pistol in the dishwasher... springs and all... and it wouldn't function... after her instructor said it could be done.

Numrich has Garand parts too of course, but their prices are higher. However, in the latest Shotgun News they advertise a complete Tanker conversion kit, .30-06 or .308, for $236.20. Which of course is money I don't have, and then she wouldn't be eligible for regular Garand matches, and then there's the question of getting the original barrel off and the new one correctly on, and a Tanker conversion makes me think of the M4 Carbine versus the M16A2 Rifle, velocity- and terminal-ballistics-wise, and this my first Garand will stay in as-issued condition for the forseeable future on principle alone anyway. -A .308 conversion sure would make her easier, or at least cheaper, to feed, though.

1173 - Sunday, 4 June 2006: 17th anniversary of the massacre of anti-tyranny (don't get me started on "democracy"...) protestors by Chinese communists in Tiananmen Square.

Gun Talk, even more discussion of New Orleans and blueshirts. If you jack-booted thugs try anything like this again, we're going to start killing you for your crimes. Host Tom Gresham isn't saying that... out loud. Yet.

Match results in email, 13th of 14 (at least I wasn't dead last), 56.0%. It sure wasn't the rifle's fault - with the exact same rifle I placed 4th of 11 in September. But now I have my own and I'll be going through a lot of ammunition with her. "Test before adjusting" is warring in my mind with "The sights are loose!" I'll see what parts I find at Barberton, and how much a punch for peening costs, and whether the punches I already have will serve.

Radio news, Iran's "president" will "consider incentives" to not develop nuclear weapons. So we're supposed to bribe him to not nuke us? Why does that sound familiar? Here's one of the points where I break with libertarians who demand noninterference. Will you respect Iran's sovereignty so much when your grandma gets nuked? -The United States of America hasn't been a republic for a long time (heh, Harry's War, "This whole thing is run on a bluff, you know that! If we get a Constitutional government, you'll be selling shoes!"), sure. Jerry Pournelle has already raised the question: If we're going to be an empire, what sort of empire shall we be?

Ex-cop caller "Don" on Gun Talk actually justifying the excesses of New Orleans blueshirts. Gresham did well enough countering him and the chat room tore the uniformed thug apart. Police nationwide are making the most heavily armed demographic HATE THEM! Other ex-cop callers and chatters objecting strenuously to Don's philosophy, denouncing the Nuremberg Defense, etc. - but they're mostly retired cops, a whole other generation, and have no influence on policy today.

Hmm, is there any reason I can't take out the Queen's rear sight spring cover - which I'm planning on replacing anyway - and beat on it with hammer and punch until it once again applies tension on the rear aperture? Let's find out! I've already determined that pressing down on the spring cover, as described in some of the forums I've found in my web research, makes the aperture stop wobbling, so if I could re-shape the cover so it applies that pressure again.... Nope, the tools I have can't apply enough force, accurately and controlled enough, to properly alter that good old Springfield steel, quit before I hurt something. New spring cover it shall be. This one's really toast, the tensioning rib is largely worn away on the underside, just as I've seen in photos on the web. Big deal, a new one is cheap.

Every design has its idiosyncracies. In the Garand, when you press down on the magazine follower, either while loading with a full clip or pressing down an empty follower with your thumb, this is supposed to release the bolt - hence you keep the edge of your hand hooked on the charging handle to avoid the infamous M1 Thumb. In at least my particular Garand, pressing down on the follower doesn't always release the bolt - unless I actually push the op-rod handle further to the rear, past its normal open-rest position, to release the bolt-stop. Like tugging on the bolt-carrier handle on a Simonov to release that design's bolt-stop after charging the magazine. So now I know. Must make dummy rounds....

Random bits: It seems the Garand has a 7-shot magazine - the 8th round must be chambered, just as the Mosin has a 4-round magazine and the 5th must chamber. It is possible to carry a loaded Garand with an empty chamber, but you'll have only 7 shots, and you'll risk M1 Thumb getting it there. Unlike the bolt-actions, the Garand's mechanical safety can be applied regardless of the condition of the bolt or magazine (except, like the Ruger 10/22, 1911, P35, etc, the safety cannot be engaged unless the hammer is cocked) - in the rapid-fire stages of the Garand match, you start with the bolt open, the safety on, and your 2-round clip. You load, close the bolt with the safety on, then the clock starts, you dive into position, take aim, flick off the safety, and away you go. I get the impression that the safety rules for '03s and Krags require the bolt to remain open until you're in position. (Wait a minute, if the M1903 Springfield is a ripoff of the 1898 Mauser, doesn't it also have a 3-position safety? About the Krag I have no idea.) From the R/O and match director's point of view, if their eyes are good enough, they can tell whether the Garand safety's on from the far end of the firing line. Internally, the safety is very positive, actually restraining the hammer and completely disengaging it from the sear. On a Mauser or Mosin, the locking lug recesses are inside the receiver ring - on the Garand they're right out where you can clean them. The points for the rear sight's elevation adjustment, machined on the receiver, are worn, but still click positively and I don't think they'll need attention for a long time. The elevation knob itself looks new(er). The rear sight is the non-lockbar type. The CMP owner's manual the rifle came with is quite good.

Weight? Everyone complaining about the Garand being heavy? She doesn't seem that heavy.

Where the heck is the bolt-stop on the Garand anyway? Ah, the op-rod again, hooking onto the operating rod catch way up at the front of the receiver, which pivots dependant on the magazine follower. Remember The Wrath of Khan? "You have to understand why things work on a starship." And in your weapon. Fascinating, the interdependence of parts. -Say, isn't the follower rod supposed to have serrations for gripping, like a pistol slide? Mine doesn't.... Getting more familiar with the innards, a few more trips through them and I'll have the dis/reassembly routine down. (First time mistake: the hook on the rear end of the operating rod catch must go over the clip release's forward protrusion inside the receiver - which means under, with the receiver upside-down for service.) John C. didn't have the elegant simplicity of design of John M., but he was his own kind of genius.

Um, evidence the barrel grooves for the gas cylinder splines have already been peened at least once.

1174 - Monday, 5 June 2006: Gods I hate working.

You know those equality stickers you see on cars all over? It's the official logo of the Human Rights Campaign, which of course means rights for gays and commies and anyone who's not a white male heterosexual or a member of the productive class. (Remember Dragnet (the film with Akroyd & Hanks)? People Against Goodness And Normalcy...?) Here's a cool republitarian alternative. And he's giving them away free!

Another Stupid Cop - heard about it on Gun Talk yesterday but now that I'm working again and making long, trying commutes, I was too lazy to look it up, but as expected it hit the email lists promptly. Obviously anyone reading this is up to speed with the titanic gunfolk presence on the net, but if you know gunfolk who aren't, please enlighten them. The net may be our greatest weapon. (Some other Bads and/or Stupids languishing in the backed-up inbox.)

Ooo, new article on SurplusRifle.com on cleaning up after corrosive surplus ammunition! Of particular interest with all this DEN42, TW5, and KA70/73 in the hovel for the Queen to feast on. You can sign up for email alerts of new articles.

The UN is running a small-arms-control event over our Independence Day weekend. At my club someone had gone to the effort and expense to prepare postcards, with stamps, addressed to Kofi, telling him to basically shove it. Of course I filled one out. And that reminds me that I have to make a stack of the Declaration of Independence to leave at my local library.

Considering racing across town after work Wednesday to the range to test the Queen. If the traffic is good I think I can be there by 4pm, and they close at 5.

Attacking pile of .38/.357 brass - tumbler full! Set to run in the morning while I'm at work.

It's theoretically possible to make .30-06 on the Pro1000, but I don't think the casefeeder will work with it, and I'm not sure I'd get the same precision, i.e. seating depth, as I would with the single-stage. Sizing rifle brass on the Pro1000 would probably be too much trouble in any case, but I still haven't tried the Hornady spray case lube, which I'll have to if I ever get .223 dies and attack that pile. I'm going to need a lot of .30-06 brass - virgin brass, Remington or Winchester, is locally available, but at about 30˘ each retail. Will seek primer-pocket swaging tool for military brass, all that WWII and cold-war Korean stuff is supposed to be reloadable.

Finished The Great SF Stories, particularly liked Poul Anderson's "The Master Key" (which I've read before, but I've since ingested a bunch of Kipling and otherwise became more socio-politically aware):


"...Why has every free human society been so short-lived? Is this not because the wild-animal men are born so heartbreaking seldom?"

He glared out across the city, where it winked and glittered beneath the stars, around the curve of the planet. "Do you think they yonder is free?" he shouted. His hand chopped downward in scorn.


Damn, Anderson was good. I really must hunt down the entire Polesotechnic League saga. Starting Leo Frankowski's Conrad's Lady, The Continuing Misadventures of Conrad Stargard Through Time and Poland. With some amorality. :(

Okay, KA70 and KA73 is Korean government production from 1970 and 1973, fine. DEN42 is obviously from the Denver Ordnance Plant in 1942. But what's this TW5 stuff? Ah, Twin Cities. So what's the 5, and why only one digit? Now, here it says that TW51 is non-corrosive - but there's no second digit on these headstamps! So what is this? And is it non-corrosive? Or is it collectible like the postage stamp with the upside-down airplane? (I have 151 of TW5, some grungier than others; five WCC41, one live LC68 left over from September, 205 of DEN42, and an as-issued can of 192 KA70 & KA73.) (Meanwhile, starting to figure out the digital camera's close-up autofocus - choose a higher resolution, use a bit of digital zoom, and of course keep it steady, like with the 2-second shutter delay:)

That reminds me, here's a little something I saw when I was spotting for a new guy in the second relay:

I love this camera.

Whoa, cool Nose Art site!

1175 - Tuesday, 6 June 2006: The 62nd anniversary of the Normandy Invasion. How long until the hate-America-first crowd starts denouncing those men as war criminals? After all, we were the Good Guys, and we won, and Howard Dean & Cindy Sheehan can't have that.

Savage really going off on this Haditha thing. It seems to me that Murtha and McGurk are providing aid and comfort to the enemy.

Gods I hate working. Just as I'd made up my mind to try to get rifle practice after work tomorrow (range open ‘til 5pm Wednesday, Friday through Sunday) I'm told they're going to a 10-hour shift. And I really need that overtime pay. GRUMP! But I'm not working this Saturday, I gave plenty of notice back when this was still a rumor.

-Yeah, like I have to jump out of a C-47 in a night-sky full of flak, or get jailed for baking myself in balmy Baghdad. grump. People in this country don't know how good we've got it, or what it cost to make it so.

When was the last time the Queen spoke? Has she ever fired a shot in anger? When, where, against whom? Who was her master that day? Pics of Greek stock-graffiti to come. But now I have to go to the laundromat and the library and get some snack-fuel for work.

List of (allegedely) pro-RKBA lawyers.

Reprocessing .30-06 brass from the match. I used to be real finicky about how many times a case had been fired and sized, but I'm not doing sub-MOA, new-barrel-every-year Benchrest stuff here, and the civilian brass at least is all range pick-ups anyway - I'll size it and tumble it and trim it and fire it again, until something splits or cracks. Hope to have at least another batch of 50 by the weekend.

1176 - Wednesday, 7 June 2006: Yawn. Up at 4:30am and with traffic, not back to the hovel until 5pm. Overtime paaaayyyy.... Actually since last week I have my old job back, having been poached from the new supervisor by the old, preferred supervisor, so I'm once again disassembling LCDs, adding or subtracting difractory or diffusory films to enhance the view, and putting them back together. (In a Filtered Air Room with full ESD protocols.) At least the moonbat at the next bench keeps his head stuck in his CD player's 'phones and my tasks are largely autonomous.

A liberal with his head stuck in the earphones. See Cooper's comment above, on living with one's head in a sack. Moonbat's probably listening to Air America....

Finished processing available .30-06 brass, hope to get it loaded tomorrow night. Sis coming down Friday. The PIG's event-copy (latest newsletter not out yet - editor says he delivered it to the webmaster a week ago - but the flyer was posted at the line at the Garand match and I simply photographed it for later review - love that camera) strongly implies there will be two relays (last year there were only five shooters). It even says the second relay will start about 11:00. If that's true, there's a slim possibility I could try the Queen in the second relay, signing up early and sighting-in on the other rifle line while the first relay shoots - probably wishful thinking, I don't even know if she'll cycle, and the sights are still loose. I'll likely stick with the VZ, and maybe I can beg the use of sis' 91/30. Haven't even started on the Mosin ejector problem, might tackle it tomorrow.

One thing I've found in my web research is the implication that the gas cylinder will tighten up after firing some number of rounds, possibly from residue, hm. But that would still leave the rear sight loose. And what about corrosive rounds? I don't want that kind of residue building up.

Yawn. This overtime will help keep me supplied with shrimp rings and frozen pizza (Red Baron brand Canadian Bacon flavor - peel the too-large bacon disks off, slice them piewise into quarters or even sixths, reapply to pizza, add pineapple tidbits from can, snack on leftover pineapple and juice later), and powder and projectiles and primers and so on, but it'll be murder on 'blogging and email for a while, especially with a match and a visit to prepare for.

1177 - Thursday, 8 June 2006: Zarkawi is dead! Long may he boil in the belly of Iblis. Located by US Special Forces and bombed by the United States Air Force. Gods Bless America!

The event is a cause of socio-political friction at work - and I'm not even the one involved this time! Between some other moonbat and some completely different Sensible Person. The Culture War goes on. I guess some people would rather he were still alive and still blowing up children (and United States Marines) in the name of his particular flavor of Allah. And that's just sick.

Yawn, long hours, long drive, if I hadn't installed that engine-fan bypass switch I think bits of my Corolla would be all over I-84 by now.

Rose Festival here in the Rose City and various navy ships (not all ours) visiting. Waterfront Park packed with carny booths, patrol boats with flashing blue lights on the Willamette River near the moored warships - not going anywhere near any of it. Hate crowds, and not too thrilled with Homeland "Security" either.

Okay, things to do before I run out of energy. First, whip up a batch of .30-06 M2-equivalent - 47 rounds in Remington brass, plus the 15 left over from the Garand match, and that's the largest single matched batch of Garand brass I have.

Then, tear apart my Izhevsk M44 carbine and work on the ejector - the ejector is a separate piece, and the cartridge interrupter is an extension of the ejector spring. On my 1945 Izhevsk carbine, the ejector spring screw head is quite chewed up, as though someone somewhere tried to fix it and gave up. The most basic gunsmith trick (a smaller bit and a hammer, working like a chisel, at an angle to the screw slot) knocked the screw loose. (It's not necessary to remove the spring to remove the ejector, you can just pull the spring out a bit and pull the ejector out from under it.) Nothing obviously wrong with either ejector or spring. Reassemble, cycle dummy rounds through barreled action - same problem, worse if anything. I have one idea, but I'll test another first - the bolt from the Hungarian M44 - same problem. Izhevsk bolt in Hungarian action - perfect function. So it's not the extractor, or boltface geometry or anything like that. Now my first idea... no... wait... since it's not that hard, I discover, to get an M44 apart, and since the Hungarian's accuracy isn't matchworthy right now anyway and taking it out of the stock won't upset a sweet setup like it might with the 91/30, I'll try the third, and obvious, idea: the Hungarian ejector in the Izhevsk action. (And in the process of taking apart the Hungarian it seems the action screws may have been loose, hm. Might try the Hungarian in the PIG after all.) No obvious dimensional differences between the two. Perfect function with the Hungarian ejector in the Izhevsk action. And, just to be thorough, put the Russian ejector in the Hungarian action... and... perfect function again. What the heck? Completely reassemble Hungarian, with Russian ejector, cycle more dummies - okay, slightly less-than-perfect function, hm. With the muzzle near vertical there's an occasional hesitation to eject; with the weapon horizontal ejection appears to be perfect with the Russian ejector in the Hungarian action.

So.

Since I have the Izhevsk apart (and since I mainly bought it for parts), I'll keep the Hungarian ejector loose and maybe slap it into sis' 91/30 when she arrives Friday and then beg the use of the rifle for the PIG Saturday, except that rifle's shooting a good 2MOA now and taking it out of the stock may change that and then I might have to sight in all over again and well phooey. At least I gathered data.

BUT THIS WAS MY FIRST IDEA:

Removing metal at the indicated point should allow the ejector to swing further into the receiver relative to the bolt and therefore put more of the actual ejection bump against the rim of the extracted case. ...Or maybe what I want is to remove metal from the other receiver-bearing point, at the aft end of the ejector. Or even both points. I dunno. I'll get a couple spare ejectors later. No grinding metal today.

And the Queen? There are two bits of Greek-alphabet carving in the stock, both on the left side. This is just below the receiver:

This is still on the main stock, just aft of the forward sling swivel:

I reserve the right to replace these with better photos later. I find that natural sunlight works great, but there's actually a shortage of it here today.

Aaaand I'm going to bed. Hovel-cleaning tomorrow, ugh.

1178 - Saturday, 10 June 2006: Match Day Again! And sis visiting. Off to Barberton, little time to chat, bought nothing. Off to the range!

Sis and her joints not shooting. Brought the MojoMosin along but I didn't use it. Field of about ten, official results to follow in a few snail-mail days, but the news is that with the VZ that had me worried I nonetheless WON the iron-sight centerfire category! (Other categories were scoped centerfire, and .22 - the June newsletter finally hit the club website last night, including the official match flyer.) And I'm pretty sure there were five in that category, including a targetized Mauser, a couple M1As, and a higher-end AR. Woohoo! 341 of possible 400, 85.25%, plus 10 bonus points for the bayonet, and a shiny new medal! Pics later. Slow-prone, 90/0X; rapid-prone, which I completely blew last weekend, 84/0X (off to the right again, five 9s, four 8s and a 7) but I deliberately went up a couple more clicks on the Mojo and the elevation was good; an amazing 84/0X, including two 10s, in slow-standing; and a wholly-adequate 83/0X in rapid-sitting. Zero misses. And a medal! Yeah!

I told sis to take lots of pictures and she did. Love that camera with its 256Mb card, just keep snapping. Had to change batteries a few times but brought enough spares. So many pictures I'll have to sort them by stage, use IrfanView to thumbnail them, and send the thumbnails to the newsletter guy for finer selection, and to the people who I gave website cards to when they request pics. Two good group photos too.

After the match, to the (crowded...) upper line to test the Queen! About 15 rounds fired, starting with the single LC68 left from September, the rest the same load I used in last weekend's match. Standard autoloader testing procedure: one round, reload with two rounds, reload with full magazine. Perfect function, no indications of headspace problems - I learned last week that my 2-round match clip works, now I know my 5-round hunting and non-CMP match clip also works - and accuracy, even with both sights flopping like a John Kerry campaign speech, was about the same 4MOA I've been fighting to break for years now. Hmm. But I'm still going to spend some of my overtime pay on a new net-ordered rear sight spring cover.

Email still backing up but one reader sends detailed instructions for peening the spline grooves, I'll buy a nice fresh ball-peen hammer. No noticeable change in the gas cylinder's movement after ~15 rounds. Again, the load I chose for the last match appears to work fine.

To the Expo show! Not enough time! And never enough money. Sis got to fondle lots of things, she's after a pistol (moreso) now, with me climbing back toward the top of the Plate Match with my P35 and second sis being Quite Accurate, if not very fast, with her 24/7. Kimber and other 1911s; P35s from Belgium (by way of Portugal), Argentina and Hungary; CZ75 (I just realized, I noticed no EAA Witness pistols at Expo!), the occasional SIG, I even had her try on a Taurus PT92 (recent production with equipment rail (shrug) and three-position Taurus/Browning safety, which I kinda like). Saw a couple 10" Garand bayonets I'd like, but one was marked $135 and the other had no price. Outdoor Marksman (Miwall) booth had bricks of Winchester primers for quite a bit below local retail but the show was closing for the day by the time we made our first pass through, and I'm still kinda being frugal at this point. Might try the Canby show, with similar vendors, next weekend.

Slap Hungarian ejector into sis' Izhevsk 91/30, cycle dummy rounds, looks fixed. But gods know what disassembly did to point of impact and group size.

1179 - Sunday, 11 June 2006: Back up to the club for a little handgun practice, back to Portland for some no-sales-tax shopping, and sis is on her way home. I'm considering going up there for Independence Day (I have to see second sis' husband's SuperPatriot house display, and maybe that's where I'll do my pyronalia).

So! The Queen runs. Mechanically she seems great, and I'll just address the sights and I'll have a true battle rifle! Everything else is cosmetic (stock, finish) or historical (sling, butt-trap tools). I can see myself buying virgin retail brass soon too, I'll need lots of .30-06. And a primer-pocket swaging tool for the military brass. Hm, according to Sierra's bullet chart their #2115, .308" 150gr FMJBT, is not available in bulk like their #2190 HPBT MatchKing. Actually the Hornady bullets worked well in the club's Springfield, and mine didn't seem to mind them, and they're cheaper than Sierra....

The medal I won in the PIG:

A very politically-incorrect group photo (crap! I'm getting fat, since I stopped bicycling and started driving! Laurits Dixon, club newsletter director, is in the center in the green shirt - in the sitting stage I crammed myself into cross-legged, turned to Laurits in the next lane and gasped out, "I'm feeling very fat right now!" He laughed) (and another thing, I'm on the wrong knee for the proper kneeling position! The right knee down, must remember!):

And, attacking waaaay-backed-up email. Which may take a couple days. Especially with the longer hours at work (yawn).

From readers and lists:

This link to a disgusting pile of media bias, and editorial responses to it here and here; from a left-wing source, but still, Cops Caught on Tape Torturing Drug Suspect (remember what I quoted from Williamson's The Weapon, on police and who they consider "guaranteed dirtbags"?); Canada Still Sucks; New Hampshire sucks a little too; Oklahoma Sucks Less; Seattle Sucks More; interesting commentary; New Orleans Still Sucks; When Physics Classes are Outlawed, Only Outlaws Will Have Physics Classes; a logical denunciation of "Smart Guns"; Dial 911 and Die; Cops Beat Up Old Man.

Yawn. Busy weekend! Bed!

1180 - Monday, 12 June 2006: WORK SUCKS AND TRAFFIC WAS HORRID AND I'M EXHAUSTED AND YOU'LL ALL HAVE TO WAIT FOR ME TO ANSWER YOUR EMAIL SO THERE!

1181 - Tuesday, 13 June 2006: Bleah.

As usual I seem to be doing the heavy lifting at work where production volume is concerned. Back to the other task now, scraping excess sealant goop off displays. Fresh, sticky sealant goop. At least here I can spend my ten hours in a chair instead of on my feet. Overtime paaaayyyyy....

Sis sends this story about a wild bear and a little ol' housecat. Which I forwarded to the Backwoodsman list. Heh.

Official match results! And I picked up a few points over what I thought I had in rapid-prone! No, c'mon, I took a picture of that target and there's no way three more points could be legitimately squeezed out of it, this must be a typo, I'm only claiming what I originally figured, and those three points won't change my position anyway. I was the only one in the whole match with a bayonet; the overall winner was in the same category, so I took the category prize; there were four in Open Sight Centerfire, I placed second in the category, and the 10 bonus points for the bayonet would not have changed my position in either the category or the whole field; and the official results show only six in the match (though I thought at least eight were shooting), putting me third overall. -Hey, I've won something to hang on my wall in four consecutive PIGs! (And three consecutive AvAs!) Overall winning score was 375/4X, 93.75%, with a target AR; overall second was Mr. R., 364/11X (!), 91.0%, with a target Ruger 10/22 (.22 category fired at 100 yards only), and then me with my scruffy old VZ! -Man, 84 of 100 in Standing, how the heck did I do that? The crappy performance in the Garand match the previous weekend must have counted as practice. I'm still jerking my rapid-fire, prone and sitting, to the right, but at least I'm aware of it. The autoloading Garand will help there, versus the bolt-action Mauser - I'll have more time for each shot because I won't have to work the bolt.

Email still slacking, must go to bed earlier if I'm going to survive to spend my overtime pay.

1182 - Wednesday, Flag Day, 14 June 2006: Double bleah. I'm working this Saturday, which will net me twenty hours of overtime in the paycheck on the 23rd (six already coming on the 16th). Meanwhile, to copy place for stack of the Declaration, then library to leave part of the stack on the free-stuff shelves, then Bi-Mart for a pound of brown-sugar beef jerky for $8.88 ‘cause I need protein for these ten-hour days dammit, then laundromat, then pretty much to bed.

Looking through latest Shotgun News, wish-listing Garand stuff, and Natchez has a 20-60x60mm Simmons spotting scope for like $35! So there goes some of my pending overtime pay. Maybe I can finally see a .30 hole at 300 yards.

1183 - Thursday, 15 June 2006: Bleah. Must get more sleep, but it's difficult when it doesn't get dark ‘til after 9pm.

The i sticker arrived! Slapped it right on. Here's the Corolla's back window now:

Any questions?

Meanwhile - saaaay, I'm getting pretty good at this:

This image is on the entry to my Awards page and is updated whenever I get a new one.  Digital cameras ROCK!

1184 - Friday, 16 June 2006: FRIDAY TRAFFIC SUCKS! Wreck in the Hwy 26 tunnel and the eastbound side of that major area freeway was backed up for miles. Escaped to a lesser highway and surface streets and it still took nearly two hours to cross town.

Gas prices creeping down over the last week, local ARCO now $2.89.

Big Fat Overtime Check, er, direct-deposit. Gas tank - full. Electric bill - caught up. Phone bill - caught up. Car insurance - paid. Checking account balance this morning: $388.17. Balance now: $129.21.

Sigh.

And I have to get up at 4:30 tomorrow morning for another ten hours of goop-scraping.

Not making the Canby show this weekend - briefly I thought of going there after work, but I get out at 4 and they close at 5 and Canby is some distance from Hillsboro, even in weekend traffic. And Sunday's out, I'll be sleeping, then listening to Gun Talk and lurking in the chat room and trying again to attack the backed-up email.

Frankowski's Conrad Stargard saga (nearly done with the omnibus Conrad's Lady) feels vaguely similar to certain later works, i.e. Flint's 1632 (introducing advanced technology and ideas, and ideals, to backwards europeasants), Ringo's Council Wars (reintroducing old technologies, and a comparison of characters Maude vs. Bast - and I say Bast would kick Maude's ass, with originality of thought over programming if for no other reason) or even Ghost (or more precisely the following Kildar); I might even draw some very loose parallels to parts of Weber's Prince Roger series, with the introducing-technology angle anyway. But in the simplest terms this kind of plot has been around since at least H. Beam Piper's Lord Kalvan of Otherwhen (aka The Gunpowder God), if not Clemens' Connecticut Yankee (which I haven't read), and if there was an influence, Ringo and Flint and, in the Grantville saga, a bunch of others, have taken Frankowski's eurosocialist amoral utopia, straightened it out for the Real World, and added much more depth of setting and of character than Frankowski has. I'm pretty much done with this author.

1185 - Sunday, Father's Day, 18 June 2006: Zzz. 60 hours this week, nearly all of them scraping goop. Overtime paaayyy....

Actually I got up before 9, then I websurfed a bit, and then my computer just DIED. This is the machine that was donated to me by a reader, which he warned had a bum power supply. No problem, when I got it I swapped in a supply from one of the derelict boxes already in the hovel. Well now that one died, and with less than an hour before Gun Talk came on and it's attendant chat room filled up! Scrambled to find another supply - the last one of the same type in the hovel, but it runs. And then the optical mouse wouldn't work and I spent the rest of the hour wrassling drivers for that. But it's fixed (may Bill Gates burn in Hell).

Gaaah.

I'm sure it's purely coincidence that there's a huge Gay Pride Rally at Waterfront Park on Father's Day. For the past several years. But of course, there's no Gay agenda. Hssss. -Looky, I don't care who sleeps with what, it's how they vote that makes these minuscule, dictatorial sexual minorities my enemies. And as a block, they vote for people who want to raise my taxes, ban my guns, persecute my Christian relatives, surrender to terrorists, undermine the traditional family, and destroy America. Not all of them, I know that. But most.

Bob Morrison of Taurus on Gun Talk and in the accompanying chat room and I asked him directly whether the older DAO 24/7, as owned by second sis, can be refit to the new 24/7 Pro SA/DA trigger - nope. Darn. (If I read the manuals right, the CZ75 and EAA Witness can be refit from DA/SA to SAO.) Well, she's still quite accurate with it (some perfect no-miss qualifying runs on the plates - I can't do that with my P35), and if she ever transitions to a single-action trigger she'll probably be unstoppable. :) Tentative plan, at the next Plate Match she attends, to swap my P35 for her 24/7 for the match, just to see what happens. Both appear wholly reliable with their preferred ammunition. -Later, Morrison says Taurus is working on an "advanced version" of the 24/7 for a US military trial to select a new .45 pistol. Ongoing discussion of current and coming Taurus products: standard 1911s finally starting to ship, compact models next year, a 10mm in 2008. Taurus including a year's NRA membership with each purchase - they started this years ago as a temporary marketing ploy and have since made it permanent. NRA sure isn't perfect, but they are big, and you gotta respect Taurus for having at least some political awareness. (If we temporarily ignore Taurus' built-in locks and their flirtation with Smart Guns....) Carbine version of the Gaucho SAA-clone revolver will not be produced due to liability; the Taurus lawyers are afraid that some user will put the support hand on the barrel and get their arm sliced up by the blast from the barrel-cylinder gap. But the Thunderbolt, Colt Lightning derivative, is reportedly shipping, if not in great quantity.

San Francisco handgun ban struck down as a violation of state law. (Like I'm ever going there....) But we all know they'll keep trying.

This site looks informative.

It used to be, I would listen to Gun Talk while cleaning weapons or sizing brass or whatnot, but now, I have to sit staring at my computer screen with the chat room running. For three hours. Oh well. :) Discussion of rising prices on weapons and ammunition, chat room discussing reloading.

Another e-newsletter to subscribe to. The Net is Power.

At the Expo show last weekend, too-generous sis bought me another pair of 13-round magazines for the P35, and in live-testing later both appear to be reliable, nor do they spit out the top round when seated with the slide locked back. (E-shopping for things for her in return, but actually buying them has to wait ‘til next week's Bigger Fatter Overtime Pay, which I have at least already earned.) (And I paid a month ahead on storage rent.) With Pachmayr bumpers even. But these magazines won't drop free. ...Yet.

Starting David Drake's The Complete Hammer's Slammers: Volume One.

Grocery Outlet was out of shrimp rings, but I got some fake crab meat.

And it looks like my email server is down so I can't send out email replies anyway!

Examining the magazines sis bought for me - the top rear of the magazine body binds against the P35's L-shaped sear. Sandpaper, elbow grease (the Pachmayr bumper has a hole through which the disassembly button in the floorplate can be reached, to get the guts out of the way during sanding, and for cleaning after) - one now drops free! More live-testing to follow for paranoia, but I may now have four (of 13) magazines I can trust. I'll sand the other presently, then try them in the Plate Match this Saturday.

1186 - Monday, 19 June 2006: Monday sucks, work sucks, blah blah. At least my ISP's email server is back. Made a little inbox progress.

Both new P35 magazines sanded last night, both drop free.

Brand-new ball-peen hammer, starting to fiddle with Garand spline grooves - a simple web search turns up several slightly-different instruction pages, some illustrated. At least one page suggests red Loctite besides, hm.

1187 - Tuesday, 20 June 2006: Burning out. I might feel better about these long work hours if my first Big Fat Overtime Pay hadn't evaporated instantly for overdue bills. (And if the afternoon traffic didn't consistently suck.) Maybe I'll get some satisfaction from the next one. Now they're even talking about working Sundays. And the rumor is that for a full 70-hour week, Sundays would be paid double-time. Grossing $200 in a single day, when I've had jobs I couldn't make that much in a week. Argh. And now, now it occurs to me that the list of Saturdays I gave to the supervisor made no provision for the Barberton shows. Argh. And I need the money! At Expo I met Hobbyist, the Barberton regular who shortened my double, and while chatting mentioned I was working overtime and he exhorted me to get it while I can. Argh!

Four-day weekend confirmed for Independence Day though. OTOH, to get a regular 40-hour paycheck from that week one has to work that Saturday, which happens to be Barberton.

Drake's Slammers captivating as always. Much I've read before, some I never have, and new material besides. -This man saw combat in Vietnam, and when he writes about blazing powerguns and crashing hulls, you can hear the firefight in progress, smell the scorched iridium armor, taste the dust kicked up by the lift fans. Kinda depresses me about my own crude efforts.

Too wasted to work on the Queen today, little email progress either.

So I'm reading the latest American Rifleman and there's an article on bullpups, specifically FN's new offerings, the 5.7x28mm PS90 and 5.56x45mm FS2000. And in the background paragraph there's a mention of the experimental T31 designed by John C. Garand Himself and I do a web search and holy crap! I've been in the Gun Culture for about a quarter-century now and I find a new tidbit every day! -Huh, kinda reminds me of the FG42, and not just in looks. The fallschirmjaegergewehr wasn't quite a bullpup but you could see one from there, and it did fire a full-size battle-rifle cartridge from a 20-round box in selective-fire. And it had straight-line geometry to reduce recoil and it had Ridiculously Tall Sights. In fact I'm not sure the kinda micrometer-looking rear sight isn't very similar between FG42 and T31.

1188 - Wednesday, 21 June 2006: New cartoon! It's a big 'un:

I have returned from yet another embarrassing bout of unemployment. Please read through entry #1225.

Aaaand I did it again. And the cartoon above will serve as partial explanation. Straight to temp office - packaging job at a Major Manufacturer of Integrated Circuits - an even longer commute with even earlier hours, and a buck less per. Too far for not enough, I'll take the rest of the week off at least, and there are still two temp services I haven't even called since last year. Consolation: I caught up the bills first thing, last pay period. I was smart enough for that. And I should net at least $400 from the next check, and there's 28 more hours in the pipeline besides.

Not telling sis and again, not updating until I get income again. She spends entirely too much money on me. She coulda had a Kimber Grand Raptor by now.

Laundromat, pleasantly deserted early on a Wednesday afternoon; oil change, one day and 50 miles overdue.

1189 - Thursday, 22 June 2006: Zzz.

A couple days ago, on library DVD, I watched The Chronicles of Narnia and frankly I was disappointed. It was... lame. Revenge of the Sith-lame. Lame acting, lame dialogue, lame tempo, shallow characters - what was it Joss Whedon said in one of the Firefly/Serenity DVD special features, as a criticism of other SF/fantasy work: "And heeere's the digital shot! And now back to our story!" And what was all this mainstream-media whining about a "strong Christian theme"? A couple brief mentions of Christmas and a short segment with what I guess was the British version of Santa Claus, near-unrecognizable to American audiences? Hmph. Guess I'll have to read the book again, it's been decades.

Okay, see that cartoon above? Lars reports that a firefighter here in America was demoted for not speaking Spanish, and that the US Forest Service may require the leaders of their fire crews (like the one I was on for a couple months about twenty years ago) to speak Spanish. And there's a story of... I'm not sure I want to soil my own site with it. An immigrant, likely illegal, having intimate relations with a puppy. "It's my dog, what's the problem?" Yesterday, just before I quit, I noticed a sign in the restroom complaining that someone was not lifting the seat before urinating - and I'd bet money that whoever the sign was directed at, can't read it. And I'd also bet money they don't wash their hands after. -And just now on radio news, a child was a victim of a hit-and-run in the Woodburn area and the suspect is "an Hispanic man". Do I have to spell it out further, why I walked off that job? And why I don't want to go back to work?

Pride prevents me from uploading this rant before I have another job, more's the pity.

Peening the Queen's spline grooves! The method I used was: strip the rifle, place the end of the barrel over a scrap of 2x4 on the floor, brace the receiver with something so the assembly won't flop under impact. Take a fresh, clean ball-peen hammer and place the round end in the groove to be peened. Strike the flat face of the ball-peen hammer with another hammer. Test-fit gas cylinder, peen more as necessary. Reassemble, screw down the lock ring while watching the gas port window in the cylinder to line up with the port in the barrel, replace gas plug - seems fixed! Or at least improved. (Though I wonder if it will stay fixed under live-fire - but I read that firing may actually tighten it up.) Front handguard still loose but I'm told it's supposed to be. Parts order, including rear sight spring cover, tomorrow, after direct-deposit.

...It would be wise to mail a rent check tomorrow, while I can. Not so much to spend on fireworks this year.

A couple months ago Portland police chief Foxworth was investigated for sexual misconduct. One of the allegations was determined to be valid and he was demoted... to captain. And given three months paid vacation. And during that paid vacation he was promoted to precinct commander. And now his interim replacement, Rosie Sizer (who happens to be married to ex-Multnomah County sheriff Dan Noelle, who created KGB-like dossiers on Oregon CHL holders), has been confirmed as the new chief. I hate cities!

Okay, on closer examination the side-to-side movement of the gas cylinder is largely, but not entirely, eliminated, but now I notice some slight fore-and-aft movement which includes the lock ring, indicating the threads there may be worn. But it must at least theoretically be more accurate now. Dry-firing - trigger plenty good.

Email still way backed up, but Tucson Tom sends this story on the decline of the Fourth Amendment and the corresponding rise of the Blueshirt State. Boy am I glad I have a Garand, a real fighting rifle, now.

1190 - Friday, 23 June 2006: Zzzz.

Netted a little more than I figured in this pay period, good. Mailing rent and ISP checks now so I'll have that much less to beat myself up over later.

Ordering Garand rear sight spring cover from Numrich ($4), and from Natchez, that 60x Simmons scope ($29.99!), and a Lee factory-crimp die in .30-06 ($7.89).

Not going to Sportsman's Warehouse. The Net is costly enough.

1191 - Saturday, 24 June 2006: Match Day! I think I placed kinda sorta fourth or fifth (12 shooters, four double entries, field of 16). The Loser's Bracket isn't very clearly defined, I'll do some web research to see how other kinds of competition do it and maybe suggest something to the match director. Anyway, zero malfunctions with the new magazines, yay! That makes four (of 13) I can trust. My performance, however, was handicapped by the Blazing Summer Sun. I am sunburned again of course, but my aim was interfered with by my flesh sizzling on the scorching hot steel of my P35's frame! I might've placed in the top three otherwise - finally knocked out at the end of the Loser's Bracket by Jim Breen, who placed second this time.

Vancouver and local ARCO now $2.85, filled up and replaced reserve.

Found a good diagram in a .PDF from some pool tournament. For some time I've been thinking of building a big board and donating it to the match. Maybe some scrap plywood from the FREE WOOD bin at the builder's supply stores....

Heat wave! I guess poor old Fuji likes it better than winter, but I don't think you could tell him that at the moment....

Actually making email progress! Reader sends this Stupid Cop story. And then another pops up. And another!

1192 - Sunday, 25 June 2006: Zz. OAC show! Bought: GI grease pot, Lubriplate 130-A, $1; sack of .30-06 brass, $5 (asking $6): 17 Federal, 26 Winchester, 36 W-W Super, 14 Super Speed, 1 Frontier, 1 EW43, and 1 Berdan-primed FN55 which I'll use for a dummy round; and my first bullet mold, a Lee "358-150-1R" with handles, $10 (marked $12).

Gun Talk! Chat room! Joe Bergeron from S&W; Michael Bane from Shooting Gallery TV, upcoming interview with John Ross, author of Unintended Consequences! I suppose I'll have to get cable again $omeday. A few months ago we lost Winchester, or a chunk of it; now word that Colt is going down. Chat room says, "Colt committed suicide...."

New bumper sticker:

Crowded computer screen, with MSIE sized in one corner for the chat room, Opera sized in another corner for hunting stuff on the web to share with or from the chat room, WordPerfect on the bottom to ‘blog, and Outlook Express in the background to keep working on the backed-up email during slow spots. And then sometimes I jump up and go to the other end of the hovel and size a few .30-06 cases.

From the chat room, this splendid collection of RKBA and Founders' quotes.

No conspiracy by law enforcement to take my guns away, huh? Hsssss.

Yet Another Stupid Cop! Or several.

Starting Rand's Fountainhead. Dunno if I can make it all the way through but I feel a duty to try.

At the range yesterday I scrounged for bonus brass and found little - one more Federal .30-06, two pieces each .223 and .45ACP, about 20 .44 Special. But, I also found some Wolf/Barnaul/whatever lacquered steel-case .30-06 - just right for making dummy rounds. (More force, meaning more lube, needed to resize - Berdan primed of course, remove decapping pin/expander ball from die.) Except now I have no projectiles that I want to waste on dummies. I could re-use the Speers I have in some Mosin dummies, but I put some work into making those and don't want to undo them. I have three Hornady .308 150gr FMJBT left, but I proved those were decent in the first stage of the last Garand match. I'm certainly not about to use Sierras (which I don't have anyway), and can't justify the expense of a whole other box of Speers. Hmm.

Anyway I got the inbox whittled down from 140 to 20, even if some were ruthlessly deleted.

The Fountainhead is... interesting. Though I find I have to take it in small bites. It has a great depth, of character, of setting, of style, of meaning. It's a disquieting, even frightening work, because it shows, shouts, bellows what man, what a man, can be, should be - and by implication forces the reader to acknowledge what he is... not. And that's only page 56 of 727.

And a couple chapters later, I hate Ellsworth Toohey, for the very reasons Rand created him to be hated and for the same reasons I put the "i" sticker on my car.

Holy Generosity, Batman! Now a reader is offering a pile of Garand clips, free! I'm planning on spending the four-day Independence Day weekend with the family up north - I hope the rear sight spring arrives before then so I can take the Queen with me. All the brass acquired this morning sized & tumbled, some left to trim. Only 53 CCI200 primers left, but over 200 WLR. Web research - looks like WLR will be all right, but now I get the impression that my load, 46.3gr IMR4895, is less than M2 Ball equivalent - one forum poster lists 47.0gr (of surplus IMR4895 as opposed to commercial). Need chronograph, $igh.

I bet Col. Cooper, who has bemoaned the Age of the Common Man, has read The Fountainhead. Probably before I was born. -My bites of it are getting bigger.

1193 - Monday, 26 June 2006: Zz. Heat wave continues, forecast to break 100F today.

Limbaugh and his guest-host praising the SCOTUS decision that blueshirts don't have to knock before kicking down your door and stealing your stuff. They don't grasp the notion that not all police are good, and not everyone who has "broken" a "law" is bad. Gunfolk, with examples like Waco and Ruby Ridge and Unintended Consequences and The Black Arrow before us, take a deeper view.

Aaand a haircut. ‘Cause it's summer and ‘cause I need a job.

All .30-06 brass processed, awaiting primers, I'll get a couple trays of CCI200 at Bi-Mart tomorrow. 45 live handloads left from the match batch, still 60 rounds of new Federal FMJ which I might try (the box says 2,900fps, which sounds too hot, but I'm not risking damage to someone else's rifle now - and forums say it's okay in Garands - and then I'd have more Federal brass), a hundred-odd TW5 which I suspect is non-corrosive, and still piles of DEN42 and KA73 in case of alien attack or Democrat majority (did I just repeat myself?).

Pretty much caught up on email.

Studied CMP manual, greased Garand, stored little GI grease pot in butt trap. Yay, my first Garand accessory! :)

And there's a box of military .30-06 brass which the primers won't go into. Swaging tool - gaaah, $81.95 for a Dillon! There's got to be a cheaper way. Web search - article, & part 2 - product - hm. Well, money's tight right now, but I have enough civilian brass for present needs.

Numrich says the Garand spring cover has shipped (US Mail) - I hope it's in better shape than the one she has now, though it would be hard not to be. Natchez (& UPS) says the spotting scope & .30-06 crimp die have shipped but are scheduled for delivery on the 3rd, when I expect to be in Everett - but that's less crucial.

1194 - Tuesday, 27 June 2006: Zzz. Not (quite) as hot today.

Gaah! $core, but now my checking account is empty. (Rent paid! Bills paid! Remember that!) To Bi-Mart for a couple trays of CCI200 large rifle primers, and I look on their reloading shelf and there's the RCBS primer pocket swager on clearance for about 9 bucks less than I found on the internet! Read instructions - set up - add primer - works. So, um, yay. $ort of. And, it comes with both sizes, for the pile of 5.56x45mm I've accreted (much of which, even with civilian headstamps, appears to be crimped) but still don't have dies (or a weapon) for. All .30-06, 200-something, ready to load, except a couple oddballs (Frontier, EW42) I've put in the dummy pile. Hm, next time I'm solvent I'll get some 100-place cartridge boxes.

In the news, flag-burning. Um. Anyone who desecrates the American flag should probably be beaten to a quivering pulp, but is this really an issue that needs a Constitutional amendment? And there are legitimate free-speech concerns. Think ahead! With such a precedent, what laws would Queen Hillary pass? America is supposed to be about less government. The GOP has electoral blinders on, refusing to see how laws they pass might be misused by the opposition (and there we are at the PATRIOT Act again). Sigh. -And the Mexican flag, phooey. My country, my flag. I see cars with decals from Guatemala and Nicaragua and so on - you like those places so much, go back there! If you want to live in America, you become an American or you get the hell out!

Israel - Palestinians abduct an Israeli soldier and Israel fetches him back with air strikes and armored columns. Which is as it should be. And why didn't we do that right away in Fallujah?

1195 - Wednesday, 28 June 2006: Zz. Heat wave broken. This would be a perfect day to spend at the range, but I'm unemployed and trying to save fuel, and the Queen's rear sight is still wobbly.

Actually finally refurbishing one of the hovel's derelict computers, the Compaq I used last.

Not particularly looking for work until after Independence Day.

Ah, snailmail, the Garand sight spring (looks new! Or close enough) has arrived! Installed - rear sight won't move unless I tell it to, perfect. Too late to make it to the range today, shrug. I'll take her along to Everett though. Mmm, Proper Sights. From now on I'm getting real rifle practice with a real rifle.

Hm, I have some green Loctite 648, #21444, past expiration date, thrown out from a previous job - I'll try it. At worst I figure I can run the propane torch over it a little to get the gas cylinder off again. Also put a touch on the rear barrel ring, there was more play there. -Later, yeah, that worked well!

One notes that the front sight can be replaced independent of the gas cylinder, and that narrower National Match front sights are available (though no doubt disallowed for the usual Garand match). Good. Next time I see a regular front sight whose wings aren't mangled in some parts bin or other, there I go. Or not, what the heck, if she shoots.

You know in Conan the Barbarian (the Milius film), when the wild dogs are chasing the newly-freed Conan and he stumbles into the ancient (Atlantean?) tomb and finds the sword? And how happy he is when he scrapes the cobwebs and such off it and just stands there fondling and admiring it? Right now I'm feeling a lot like that. We gunfolk also have a Discipline of Steel, though any Riddle about it has long since been solved by men like Col. Cooper.

Continuing The Fountainhead. This is a book I will finish. Atlas Shrugged in the queue.

Library DVDs: Ike, starring gunfolk Tom Selleck, about the burden of command and of decision before the Normandy invasion - didn't suck, Selleck's certainly a good actor, but this production wasn't very exciting. And, The Barbarians, a four-part History Channel series featuring Vikings, Goths, Mongols & Huns. And over a thousand years ago France (under Charles the Bald) was already a sniveling pack of appeasers, and the lessons learned (but not by the French, or The New York Times, or the Democratic Party - but I repeat myself) have echoed through the centuries. And there were a couple digs at deGaulle in Ike, too (like how the Warsaw Ghetto lasted twice as long as the entire French army).

1196 - Thursday, 29 June 2006: Zz.

Box o' Garand clips arrived, 48 of them!

Overcast this morning, a relief.

New bumper stickers:

So it's partisan, what isn't these days? And, I'm not, but some of my family is:

And I just like the idea of rubbing the moonbats' noses in it.

Huh, Libertarian Party national convention here in Portland this weekend. Well, I'll be busy. RINO Saxton will attend, must give (some) credit for outreach.

On Lars, some guy pushing the Fair Tax as a less-complicated alternative to the current tax code - and the guy, the spokesman for this concept, doesn't even have his stuff together and keeps saying, "Well, you got me there... yup, missed another one." (Personally I like the Harry Johnson option....)

Mmm. Having the Queen does make up, some, for the burglary. Jovian thunderbolts, etc.

Whoa. I haven't found this, as such, on the web, but I did find a reference to it being published c.1991 in one of the SF magazines. From the lists:


NO REFUGE COULD SAVE BY DR. ISAAC ASIMOV
(Update, 21 October 2006: I found a link to this - the complete Francis Scott Key poem which became our national anthem and Dr. Asimov's essay regarding it - here. In the interest of server space I'm replacing the text with the link.)

Temp service calls! Possible job - Hillsboro again - four 10s, day shift, Fridays off - electronics, soldering - $10.50/hour - yeah, send that one my resume.

1197 - Friday, 30 June 2006: Last pay, a couple hundred, I can make it for a while, and savings can cover the next car insurance if necessary. The question now becomes whether I hide my unemployment from my too-generous sister for a four-day weekend.

Packing. Garand to show off - Stevens for subversion as opportunity presents - flintlock ‘cause it's Independence Day weekend - stack of the Decaration - P35 of course - digital camera (hm, one could philosophically stretch to calling that a weapon, certainly on the battlefields of the Culture War) - lots of ammunition - tackle box of weapon-cleaning stuff - spotting scope - prone mat - other shooting accessories - what am I forgetting? Oh yeah, clothes and toiletries and that sort of thing.

Several local stations at or under $2.85 for Regular; one 76 near Sportsman's Warehouse $2.79 and mobbed, topped off.

So I'm driving around spending some of my last income and I see a couple things. First, another of those equality stickers. Now, we know what that stands for - the lowest common denominator, make everyone equally poor and miserable: "Tax the rich/Feed the poor/'Til there are no/Rich no more." This is the sort of thinking that leads to the Khmer Rouge executing "educated persons" and making pyramids of their skulls, less than two generations ago. Well, this sticker, I saw on... a very new-looking Jaguar. Meaning, "No one has a right to be successful or wealthy except ME and MY ELITIST BUDDIES who will, by right of all the articles we've read in Newsweek, tell all the rest of you lowly peasants how to live." And eventually, there we are at the skulls again. (I bet the leaders of the Khmer Rouge didn't miss any meals....) This would also be a good time to again plug The Road to Damascus by John Ringo and Linda Evans, which isn't the best Bolo story ever written but is important for other reasons.

And then, in Oregon there's this Oregon Trail card, used like a debit card, except the money is welfare from my taxes. And I drove past a pizza place. And on the big letter board, where most business establishments would advertise their latest specials, it said, "WE ACCEPT OREGON TRAIL". This ties in with something I read from the net recently, that in communist North Korea, the worker's paradise of guaranteed socialist equality, the poor are resorting to cannibalism to avoid starvation (and when's the last time Kim Jong Il missed a meal?) - while here in evil capitalist exploitative America, one of the biggest problems among the poor is... obesity. I am of course ticked that my tax dollars are being spent on what can fairly be considered luxury items for social parasites (by which I include illegal aliens). -But, I must also say: What a country. Nobody starves in America. Even our poor people get fat.

And then I think it through and remember the People's Republic of Haven in Weber's Honor Harrington saga, with the Dolist and Legislaturalist classes, and I have to wonder how long it can last. And then I get more rifle practice. What was it Michael Savage said last year, about the savagery in New Orleans? Something about "people who haven't worked in five generations". And eight years before that John Farnam was warning us.

While in Sportsman's Warehouse getting... as little as I could e$cape with, tortured myself again with a CZ75 in 9x19mm. $419.99, which ain't bad for retail. And they don't carry anything from EAA, hm.

More History Channel stuff from the library, The Korean War: Fire and Ice miniseries. Bureaucratic blunders on our part, again, not least the abandonment of Chiang Kai-Shek and Nationalist China to the communists. And what is this reprehensible American habit of dismantling our military after every war? -Well, at least we've always had the Marines to pull our backsides out of the fire by sheer testicular fortitude.


[Whoa there! If you're jumping to the bottom of the page, you may be missing something. Go back up to #1188.]

May 2006 | JUNE 2006 | July 2006

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