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Monday, October 12, 2015

Monday Gunday: Erin Shoots Her AR

Yesterday I took Francisco N. Stein to the range and fed him a bunch of ammo. My goals were:
  1. Function check the rifle to make sure the upper played nicely with the lower;
  2. Test the magazines for feed issues;
  3. See if there were ammo types he liked or hated;
  4. Zero my red/green dot and iron sights. 
I am pleased to report that everything went very well. 
What? I like Magpul. 
 All told, I fired 130 rounds of ammunition from Frank. Because I am a cheapskate, I bought 55gr .223 because it was the most affordable which meant more (literal) bang for my buck. 80 rounds were acquired from Lucky Gunner via a gift certificate I acquired last Christmas; the last 50 were bought from Walmart on the way to the range.
Frank ate every single one of these without issue. I'm not sure of one of them is "more accurate" than the others, but the Perfecta were the ones I used last and they were the finishing zero on my optics. Considering that they were the best deal and most convenient to buy, I'm going to be using them from now one (unless I find something better). 

I also tested all five of my magazines:
  • Magpul 40-round
  • ProMag 30-round
  • three aluminum STANAG magazines
All of them worked flawlessly at max capacity (yes, even the ProMag). While I am aware that this is not a conclusive test and that some may fail sooner than other, I'm still happy to see that none of them were immediate junk.

Here is the final target after I got the sights more or less zeroed at 25 yards. I'm going to have to beg forgiveness for some of the stray shots in the 8 and 9 rings; once I was satisfied I was chewing through the bullseye I went a bit happy with the remainder of my shots.

The next time I have more ammo I'm going to take Frank out to 50 yards and see how well he does there. I have a magnifier for the red/green dot that I'd like to test.

Sunday, October 11, 2015

Doctor Who: A Passion for Beethoven.

Spoilers throughout, as usual. Especially that “Minister of War business.”

Okay, I can almost forgive the Sonic Sunglasses if they keep letting Twelve play with that guitar. Especially if they keep letting him break the fourth wall and play his own theme music after giving us a lecture on temporal mechanics. It's definitely giving Twelve a sense of old-school punk-rock cool that even Tennant on his best days would have had trouble matching.

This episode is the second part of the second two-part episode of the year (so far), and unlike the first two-parter, this episode gels extremely well with its first part. Apprentice and Familiar had very different tones, with the first part being much less focused than the second part, but here the pacing remains similarly frantic and the stakes escalate well with the first episode.

Between the magnificently gruesome-looking inside-out face of the Fisher King to the cloudy nothingness in the empty eyesockets of the Doctor's ghost to the rushing water from the broken dam violently flooding the coldly lit air of the Cold War dummy town, the visuals in this episode are far and away the best we've gotten this year  (so far).

Speaking of whom, the Fisher King is probably one of the best monsters I've seen since the relaunch of the show, despite his painfully short screen time. I really hope we get to see him again, as that's the sort of monster design that makes you pine for an action figure. (Well, it makes me pine for an action figure.) The animation was excellent as well, which was surprising for a large practical effect like that. I haven't seen a practical monster that big move that well since Farscape, and the confrontation between Twelve and the Fisher King was fantastic. I haven't seen the Doctor stand up that defiantly to a being that obviously powerful since Seven.
Seriously, Henson company would be proud of this.
Twelve seems to be remembering the lessons he learned as Ten, as his plan here was suitably intricate so as not to break the laws of time, and his insistence that you can't “cut tragedy out at the root” definitely hearkens back to "The Time Lord Triumphant" story beats where Ten was laid low when someone whom he changed history to save killed herself shortly afterward. Capaldi's performance as the Doctor ghost, coupled with the smoky effects and empty eyes, was chilling -- especially when mimicking the call of the Fisher King at the climax. 
This is what despair looks like. 
Clara's previous smugness seems to have evaporated rather quickly after seeing the Doctor ghost. Cass's question about if traveling with the Doctor changed Clara and made her willing to put people's lives at risk really hit home with her, too. If she keeps this up, I may have to take back the “Series 2 Rose” comment I made last week.

I really enjoyed the Daredevil moment with Cass, despite my comment about disabled superpowers last week. Showing the ghost stalking her from her perspective, with complete silence while focused on her, then hearing the axe dragging was effective, and her last-second dodge after checking the floor plating for vibrations was well executed.

So far, this is the stronger of the two-part stories this year, even managing to use the accursed Sonic Sunglasses in an effective manner. The bootstrap paradox used in the episode was well addressed, too, and it's been a few years since we saw one, not since Five and Ten crashed into each other and nearly punched a hole in the universe the size of Belgium.  I'm only disappointed that we didn't get a reason that Cass never let Lun look at the writing in the shuttle beyond having to extrapolate "intuition." 

Gun Blog Variety Podcast #60

Adam and Sean are back for Episode 60.
  • Erin Palette tells us about the many uses of hand sanitizer.
  • Since Nicki Kenyon thinks that Russia and the US aren't in a proxy war in Russia, I ask her if the US should cooperate with them. 
  • Barron B tells us how secure RFID credit cards aren't.
  • And Weer'd, in an epic length Patented Weer'd Audio Fisk™, dissects our president's post Oregon shooting campaign speech.
  • It pains Sean to say it, but he thinks that Michael Bane is wrong about post-Oregon gun control. Stick around after the Audio Fisk and he'll tell you why.

Thanks for downloading, listening, and subscribing. Don't forget to share with a friend. Please like and share The GunBlog VarietyCast on Facebook, and if you use iTunes, give us a review!
Listen to the podcast here.

Show notes may be found here.
A special thanks to our sponsor Law of Self Defense. If you haven't taken a legal self defense class from attorney Andrew Branca, sign up now. Andrew will teach you the law of self defense in your state. Use discount code "Variety" at checkout for 10% off.

Friday, October 9, 2015

SHTFriday: the Active Shooter Scenario

Drat! I forgot to post a link to my Blue Collar Prepping post on Friday, so I'm posting a link now. (And also back-dating it so it won't interfere with the flow of the blog. Yet I'm telling you about it now, which completely ruins the illusion.)

But that doesn't matter, because all of you sexy intelligent well-read people are subscribed to my other blog anyway, am I right?

Thursday, October 8, 2015

Seeing if I can start a trend

I gave Salem the night off because he's dealing with more dental problems. Also, he's promised me a real barn-burner of a post next week, and when he gets his ire up he does good work, so I'm giving him a week to recuperate and fully get his dudgeon on.

So yesterday, my friend Sean Sorrentino posted this image on Der Lederhosen:
As someone who attended the 2015 NRA Convention, I can tell you a few things with absolute certainty:
  1. That is indeed the press room at NRACon, where bloggers (like me) got their media badges. 
  2. I open carried the entire time I was there (last year, too) and no one -- not con staff, not security, not even the police I would occasionally see walking the floor -- said anything about the pistol on my hip. Lots of folks complimented me on my holster, though. 
  3. The middle person is Dennis Badurina of Dragon Leatherworks. He has a distinctive holster. 

In less than an hour, we had positively identified all three men: 
  1. The man on the right is Uncle from SaysUncle. (Identified by Sean, confirmed by self)
  2. The man in the middle is indeed Dennis. (Identified by lots of us, confirmed by self)
  3. The man on the left, and the last identified, is Adam of Guns, Cars, and Tech. This is funny because he's Sean's co-host on the Gun Blog Variety Cast, but Sean didn't recognize him -- someone else had to point out to Sean that it was his co-host!
The point of all of this is that the gunblog community can identify some of its members just based on their carry pieces and holsters, and I find that amusing.

To continue this trend, I'm going to post a picture of my carry rig for easy identification, and hope that other gunnies will do the same.

Fellow gunnies, post your pics!

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

And then, this happened

It's kind of turning into a gun week. Which is cool, I like having theme weeks.

So my friend Jeff pointed me to this, and my reaction was "Wait... what?"

Don't get me wrong, I love seeing things in full auto, and guns are fun. But the idea of a belt-fed 9mm subgun just strikes me as really, really weird. I mean, why would I want to put 9mm into links when there are perfectly good subguns that feed from mags and drums? Seems like a lot of tedium to me.

The quick-change barrel is pretty spiffy, though.

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Ammo Ambassadors

Ammunition To Go (a company from whom I've bought ammo before) is running an excellent campaign known as Ammo Ambassadors:
We're giving away 100,000 rounds - that's 2,000 boxes of 9mm ammo just for bringing a new shooter to the range! So, be sure to start planning today as quantities are limited!

Here's how this works:
    Free ammo
  1. Find a buddy or family member that's new to firearms. 
  2. Print off this target and take it to the range with you. 
  3. Introduce your new shooter to firearms and snap a photo of them with their target. 
  4. Send us a copy of the photo with the submission form below. 
  5. We'll send you two boxes of 9mm ammo for free as a thank you for your time and energy helping grow the number of firearms-friendly folks in the United States.

This is what we call a Win-Win, folks:  You take a new shooter to the range. You both have fun. You educate them on firearms and hopefully get them voting for gun rights and gun freedom, And in return, you get free ammunition -- that's completely free, with no shipping or handling (I know this because I've already gotten some with that code) -- to help defray the expenses incurred in letting someone else use your ammo.

What's not to love?  Go become an Ammo Ambassador today!

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