Monthly Archives: March 2010
I finally got to try out the XD-45 mags this past weekend. None of them worked. Why? They were just flat out wrong. When we compared them to a proper XD-45 magazine, they were too short and of different shape/dimensions.
So let’s recap:
- 6 XD-9 mags
- None had the magazine catch notch
- 1 was “blistered”
- 1 was too thick and wouldn’t drop free
- 4 XD-45 mags
- All were flat out wrong
- 2 AR-15 mags
- One was too thin, couldn’t catch on anything in the magwell
- One would catch but then the bolt wouldn’t close
- 1 XD-45 gun
Really, that’s pretty bad.
I called RINGS yesterday and left a message and just got my callback from Carl Rings. I explained the whole situation. He sounded rather embarrassed about the whole thing and apologized profusely. He said that all molds should be taken from proper parts and then should be tested out before shipping. Obviously that didn’t happen. I of course have no knowledge of what will happen internally, but I’d like to hope the person(s) that made my products will get some remedial training in proper manufacturing procedure and quality assurance (if not just fired or smacked upside the head).
To their credit, they will be sending me a UPS hang tag (or some such thing) so that we can ship back to them at no cost to us. I would expect that in a case like this.
We’ll see how it resolves out. So… I’m still disappointed at what a trial this has been, but I’m glad to see RINGS working to make things right. I also hope they’re taking internal steps to correct this so something like this doesn’t happen again.
One thing in the newsletter bears repeating: most self-defense incidents do not happen at home. Most people are all into home-defense, but the reality is it makes up a small part of violent crime. From the newsletter:
To illustrate, here are some statistics from the United States Department of Justice, looking at Robbery Locations for the year 2007:
Gas station- 2.6%
So, you are almost three times as likely to be robbed on the street than at home, and in the home only accounts for 1 robbery in 6. Similar patterns exist for rape, aggravated assaults, etc. In fact, good locks, an alarm system, and proper lighting can reduce your risk of violent crime at home to very low levels.
So this isn’t to say you can’t have issues at home, but on the whole most incidents are outside the home: about 85%! So just looking at the statistics, odds are if the flag is going to fly it’s going to fly when you’re away from home.
What’s your plan for defending yourself outside of your home?
LINCOLN – Attorney General Jon Bruning today issued an opinion finding that Omaha’s city ordinance requiring handguns to be registered does not apply to anyone with a state- recognized concealed handgun permit.
“The Legislature clearly intended the concealed carry permit process to be stringent,” Bruning said. “If you go through the steps to obtain a permit, there’s no reason for cities to make you jump through additional hoops.”
Nebraskans must undergo a background check, firearms training and fingerprinting, and submit a photograph and $100 to obtain a concealed handgun permit.
The Concealed Handgun Permit Act, as amended by LB430 in 2009, pre-empts municipal bans on the carrying of concealed handguns. The Omaha ordinance, which prohibits the possession of unregistered concealable firearms, violates this pre-emption as it applies to those who possess a valid carry permit recognized by Nebraska.
Given the wording of “state-recognized”, well… my Texas state CHL is recognized as valid (via reciprocity) within Nebraska.
This is all good. Omaha has been very anti-gun, but the only people that’s served to hurt are the law-abiding citizens. The gangs and other criminal element so prevalent in Omaha of course doesn’t give a fairy fart about any laws. So now removing barriers from law-abiding citizens, that’s a good thing.
Does anyone know of a gunsmith in the Denver, Colorado area? Someone that knows rifles, older firearms, restore/refinish/repair, etc..?
Gun control is using both hands.
Or perhaps better, gun control is having as much of both hands on the gun as possible.
I remembered something else I observed a lot of in yesterday’s classes.
Many people understood putting both hands on the gun, but how those hands were put on the gun would vary greatly. It all depended where and how you learned how to shoot a pistol, and thus what habits you needed to break.
One key is having as much of both hands actually on the gun, as much palm and skin in contact with the grip/frame as possible. Most people don’t have a problem with this with their dominant/trigger hand. But the weak hand would have all sorts of issues. Some people would “teacup” hold (meaning the butt of the gun rested in the palm of their hand, as if the saucer for a teacup), which does nothing to help manage recoil. Some would get the support hand on the side of the gun, but it would barely be in contact with the gun. Typically this was due to thumb problems. They might tuck the dominant hand’s thumb against the frame then their support hand palm would be over the dominant thumb. Or the thumbs might be weaved together. Or the thumbs might be tucked back revolver-style. There would be all manner of ways, but the end result was the same: very little of the support hand was actually in contact with the gun.
The trouble with this? That support hand does most of your gripping of the gun! So you need to grip and grip tightly with that hand, and the more that palm and skin is actually in contact with the gun the more possible grip surface and friction there is against the gun recoiling and moving to help control it.
Watch this great Todd Jarrett video:
He explains a lot of detail about good grip and stance.
That “other hand” isn’t just there to be there, it has a lot of purpose. Get its palm high on the grips, get lots of skin in contact with grip, get the thumbs out of the way, and have that hand squeeze and actually grip the gun. There’s more to “good grip” than that, but seeing all the “lack of contact” with that hand in classes yesterday and I wanted to comment on it.
A good day.
Both classes were at capacity. The usual gamut of people: men and women, young folk, old folk, various ethnicities, various backgrounds and “lots in life”. I always point this out to break stereotypes: gun folk aren’t just old white men or just rednecks. And while these two classes can typically have a lot of people taking both, today the majority of each class were actually only there for the one class. So a lot of faces went through the school today.
Given it was a long day… given I’m going on 4 hours of sleep… well, I’ll just mention a few things that today’s class made most evident.
- Small guns are hard to shoot well. Small guns that kick a lot (e.g. .40 S&W) are even harder to shoot well.
- You obviously acknowledge the difficulty in shooting the small gun because you take steps to make it a larger gun: e.g. mag extenders so you can get a full grip. Well, once you do that the gun is almost full-sized, so why not just use a full-sized gun?
- Good holsters are well worth it. One quality of a good holster? It stays put. Another quality? The mouth stays open when the holster is empty so you can reholster without having to look at the holster or use your other hand to open the mouth up. That could be acceptable for carry, but in a class or any time when you know you will be drawing and reholstering? Nope.
- It’s hard to find a good holster in most stores. The Internet is your friend.
- Sunscreen is your friend.
- Drink water. Drink some more.
- When reloading, just drop the magazine to the ground. If someone is attacking you, the magazine is the least of your concerns! Getting your gun running again is more important so spend your time focusing on the important things, like getting more ammo in the gun so it’s again functional and useful.
- Magazine pouches are useful. But regardless of how you store a spare magazine, position the magazine such that when you retrieve it the magazine is already oriented to go right into the gun.. no need to check it, flip it over, etc… just retrieve and insert. Typically this means you want to point the bullets outward, i.e. “bullets towards the bad guy”. But that’s not a hard rule (e.g. one student had to retrieve from a pants pocket and the way his hand naturally went there was better to position the bullets away from the bad guy).
- Slow is smooth, smooth is fast.
- When you draw your gun, keep with the 4-count draw. When you reholster, do the 4-count draw in reverse. Keep the discipline of the draw. Do no travel along the hypotenuse.
- Guns with big long double-action trigger presses are hard to shoot well. Yeah maybe you can get a nicer single-action on the 2nd press, but when your life is on the line that 1st shot is going to be most important. Make sure that first shot can hit what you’re aiming at.
- Please be mindful of school/class policies. KR Training policy only wants brass-cased ammo (no steel case, no aluminum). As well, SERPA holsters are not permitted because of the risks that come with that holster. When in doubt about your equipment, ask prior to class.
I know there were other things I wanted to mention… but my brain is fried and ready for bed.
There was one student that did something I thought was commendable. He was only in the DPS1 class but realized in there that his fundamentals were not solid… that the way he had been taught prior to this class just didn’t cut it. He asked if going back and taking the prior course (Basic Pistol 2) would be good for him. I think it’s great he realized where his skills were and didn’t let his ego keep him from taking a step back. A lot of people would just press on with their existing habits (good or bad), but he wants to go back and improve his fundamentals. I think that’s most commendable, and I do hope to see him come back. He’s got a good attitude.
The biggest thing I saw all day tho was small guns and harsh calibers. Small guns are hard to shoot well, and when you add in harsh calibers like .40 S&W they’re even harder. This isn’t to say one cannot eventually come to shoot those guns at an acceptable level, but why fight your equipment? Why make things hard on yourself when you don’t have to? Granted, in many respects this is a personal choice and you have to choose what’s right for you and your situation and need. But consider what’s important here: the gun or your life. Is the gun the most important thing (that gun, that caliber)? or is the ability to shoot well? the ability to defend your life if need be. Just be sure to be clear on what your goal is, and proceed accordingly from there.
Thanx to the students that came out. Hope to see you all back again soon. Keep practicing! Dry fire is your friend.
Just got home from seeing Megadeth, Testament, and Exodus at Stubb’s BBQ in Austin.
I have to make this brief as well… it’s late, I’m tired and want to go to bed.
Exodus was alright. Only one original member of the band, so in a lot of respects it seemed like a cover-band up there. But they were tight, thrashed pretty hard. I don’t remember the whole set list, but I know “Bonded by Blood” opened things up. “Fabulous Disaster”, “War is My Shepherd”, and of course “Toxic Waltz” were played as well. The vocalist had a thing for “old school” and “circle pits”… sorry but it’s not how many people are “old school” at this show.. .it’s how many of us are just old. But still, they put on a heck of a show for an opener.
Testament was the main attraction for me. They played all of their first album “The Legacy”, which was awesome. They also added a couple more songs, “D.N.R.” and “Three Days of Darkness”, which was more awesome. What sucked tho was their sound mix. It was terrible. Toms and kick drum were very clearly heard, everything else was lost. It was pretty bad and they need to fire that sound guy. Plus Eric Peterson had some technical problems at one point (you could hear the bad ground). Nevertheless, Testament was awesome. My neck will be sore in the morning.
The catch with Megadeth was playing all of “Rust In Peace”, which sounded terrific. I admit I’m not the biggest Megadeth fan, and what I do like tends to be older stuff like “Peace Sells” or maybe the most recent would be from “Symphony” (tho the new one, “Endgame” is pretty cool). They were tight. Just boom boom boom, song after song, little banter in between. Just a machine gun out there. In addition to all of “Rust In Peace”, other songs included “In My Darkest Hour”, “Trust”, “Symphony of Destruction”, “Skin of My Teeth”, “Peace Sells”… can’t remember them all. That new guitar player, Chris Broderick… man, he’s awesome.
Good show. Marred by poor sound mixes and some technical problems, but apart from that most enjoyable.
One question tho… why do people feel a need to fling their full beer cups across the place into the crowd? Not only is that a waste of good beer, but I know I wouldn’t appreciate getting smacked and soaked like that. If it doesn’t bother you, then instead of throwing the beer like that just pour it over yourself and hit your own head. Assholes.
Other observations. Lots of young people there… I mean like under the age of 16… even under 10. Saw a good-looking chick with a Cannibal Corpse tank-top on… that’s a rare sight. And boy… everyone has a mobile phone. No more lighters going up… it’s all LCD displays lighting things up. Pictures, video, texting, messages… it’s amazing how much “LCD pollution” there is during a show. I’m guilty of it myself (kept snapping pics and emailing my buddy W who couldn’t attend the show).
Anyway… off to bed. Tomorrow (well… it’s after midnight now so I guess today) shall be interesting.
Over at BNRMetal, they had a voting tournament for the best metal album of all time.
Megadeth’s “Rust In Peace” won for best album of all time…. beating Metallica’s “Master of Puppets”. I’m sure there’s some sort of sweet irony in that for Mr. Mustaine.
I’m not sure I agree with that. RiP is a great album for sure, but overall I think MoP is a better album, more progressive, and of course Metallica has always been a bigger band. My vote would be for MoP.
The only other thing I could disagree with would be Sepultura’s “Arise” beating Ozzy’s “Diary of a Madman”. But I’ve always been a Randy Rhodes fan.
Anyway, check it out. A pretty cool tournament and really, I think it panned out fairly well.