Thursday, November 29, 2007

I'm not ignoring my .45-75

I know I haven't been posting on the subject much. What I've needed is some bullets and I simply haven't had much time to cast. Most of my non-hunting time has been given to doing my Mom's business. Of course I'm always "casting" about for bullets and was put onto a deal for the Lyman 457192. Seems they'll be using the original cherry, too!
Gents, getting back to the bullet ... Learned yesterday, that the Special Run of the 45-75 Lyman 457192 will not be done using the 457122 cherry. Folks at Lyman dug deep and found the 457192 cherry which has the Big GG's that were on the original Ideal 456192's for this Special Run.
Lyman will be using the original Ideal 456192 cherry which was the one that they used for the discontinued Lyman 457192. I have 2 bullets from this mold cast in 1:20 and the bases are 459-460.
To get on the commitment list ... details are in my 1st post of this tread with this link ...

Make sure when you send John Kort the email, you include your name and a valid email address. John will reply back to you with details to contact the Distributor that will be selling the molds. John is maintaining the master spreadsheet of 'who's in' for the Distributor

I was told that Lyman will be making the molds before the end of 2007 which was a surprise.
This is pretty exciting but not moving along as fast as some shooters of more modern guns and cartridges might expect.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Hunting and Morality

Why this post? Because today I was upset by a post on a forum I moderate (not by the poster). Why was I upset? Because of the issues direct or implied in this letter/message to a forum member (Edited to add the link to the post mentioned and to correct spelling. Also note that the actual source is in question.).
I am a single parent of a 12 year old who has taken an interest in hunting after watching several hunting related TV shows. There are no hunters in my family and we are not gun owners. I was extremely reluctant to allow this activity but a Mom has to support her child's wishes if she is to ever bond with them into adulthood. I have always thought killing animals was cruel and unnecessary. However, the TV shows speak of the fairness and good nature of hunters that I would like to have seen.

I found your website by searching for a hunt for a complete beginner. I then researched a number of leads including other sites. I found website you referred to on your website, Paco Kelly's Initially I thought I had found a place where gentleman spoke of guns and hunting responsibly. I almost gave in to my child's wishes.

Then I came upon this topic For All Hunters of Domestic Felines. The title struck my as peculiar. How do you hunt Domestic anything, let alone cats? After looking at the conversation, I am appalled! My concerns of hunters having a killing mindset and little or no reverence for animals has been confirmed. I find it disgusting that the participants feel it is appropriate to kill an animal just because it is homeless or unfortunate. How much damage could a few stray animals wreak? Society has created the animal control units to address this type of situation. Advocating the killing on site of animals for no reason, even before the animal is seen doing anything objective is not acceptable in today's society and I feel is wrong and unnecessary. I would not be surprised if it is illegal too!

I would have put this on the website in question, but I refuse to join as a "member" in order to get into the conversation. You seem to have a legitimate family oriented business, so I wanted you to know that you are referring people to a group of blood thirsty individuals that do nothing for your businesses image.

I guess a thank you is in order. My fears have been confirmed and my children WILL NOT be participating in hunting or guns with a group of outrageous animal killers with no conscience!
Not unexpectedly a reasoned approach as stated by myself and others was disregarded and we were lumped in with "outrageous animal killers with no conscience" (wherever else she might have found them). However, I noticed that there were very few such in that topic which is why it will remain up and unlocked. In other words, I thought that the joy killer(s) (there may not have even been one) were far outweighed by the voices of reasoned response. So, it seems to me that this lady was another who made an unreasoned, i.e. illogical, response to the topic. Either she didn't read all the posts or she allowed her personal prejudices to overcome reason. As I pointed out in the topic, the subject matter invariably excites and polarizes those involved in the discussion so why should we expect differently of somebody with no actual knowledge of hunting, biology, wildlife management, or shooting. Of course she would depend on her uninformed prejudices to draw a more comfortable/politically-correct conclusion.

While I'm disappointed that this particular 12 year-old's single mom is unable to raise her son as I wish he was raised, I feel no particular responsibility for her inability to deal with reality.

What concerns me more is that this young man has had and will have a particularly skewed and emotion based world view that doesn't allow for other points of view or support logical thinking.

In my experience many/most such folks who have an unreasoning fear (to use her word) of guns and abhorrence of hunting live lives of innumerable incongruities.

For example, many oppose hunting because of the killing but they ignore the many ways in which their own lifestyles kill wild animals. Whether it is their windmill power generation or gas powered car, their use of leather & wool or synthetics, even their consumption of vegetables and "renewable" resources such as cotton, all these things result in wild animal deaths and/or loss of habitat. Those losses to animal populations are far worse than the number of animals killed by legitimate/licensed hunters. But their inconsistencies extend beyond hunting to their purchase of goods from countries like the People's Republic of China when the PRC is currently polluting at a rate far greater than the US.

As to the subject of housecats, even the State of California has been moved to produce a handout on the subject:
Listen! What’s that rustling in the bushes? It’s not wildlife, it’s a housecat!
Untamed domestic, or “feral,” housecats are commonly found on city streets, and are being seen more and more frequently in our state parks.
Where do they come from and why are there
so many?

Pet owners faced with unwanted cats may abandon them outdoors, sometimes in parks.
Well-meaning people then feed these cats, sometimes following a plan where the cats are trapped, neutered, possibly vaccinated, and re-released in an outdoors location. Problems inherent in this approach include:
• Cats will continue to be dumped where people think they will be fed.
• Catching all cats before they reproduce is impossible, so the number of cats increases.
• A large number of cats in one area, and cat food, attracts predators and other animals and encourages the spread of disease.
• People may stop putting out food, leaving the cats to try to survive on their own.
What is the problem with cats in parks?
Cats catch and kill small mammals, birds,reptiles and amphibians—it is their habit as
predators—and by doing so they compete with native predators. Studies have found
that the typical housecat allowed to roam outdoors brings home more than 50 small
mammals, birds, and lizards per year. This number would be even higher for feral cats
living in our state parks. Additionally, feral cats also pose a public health risk, from bites and scratches to rabies and other diseases that can be passed to both
wildlife and humans. Feral cats live difficult, often painful lives, exposed to a host of dangers including bad weather, accidental injury, intentional harm, predation by dogs and wildlife, injury from other cats, and disease.
What is park policy on feral cats?
Housecats do not belong in our state parks. To willfully abandon any animal is prohibited by state law, and the feeding of feral cats within state parks is specifically prohibited by state regulations. Whenever possible, cats are
humanely trapped by park staff or animal control agencies and removed to local animal
shelters, where they often must be euthanized.
What can you do?
Visitors should report feral cats and feeding stations to park staff when cats are seen in undeveloped areas of the park. Please do not feed cats, or any wildlife, in
state parks.
Clearly feral and released housecats ARE a problem. Indeed, even Cornell University has produced something on the subject.

So what about hunting, generally speaking? Well, hunting has fed mankind for thousands of years. Are we to look back on our ancestors as horrible people? Hunting has protected crops for thousands of years. Are we to look on farmers as horrible people?

I'm going to have to continue this later...

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Holiday and Cold Cut Into Hunting Time

I've had a cold which, combined with my sinuses, guarantees coughing which isn't conducive to successful deer hunting. So, I've not done a lot. Have enjoyed the holiday though. Next week is another thing. We'll see.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

NRA Life Membership

Well, with all the talk about the NRA lately I guess I've done decided. I'm going to send in my money and become a Life Member. Maybe you can then vote me onto the board (but of course you have to be a voting member).

I strongly believe there are only two ways to change an organization, control it from the inside or destroy it from the outside. We can't afford the destruction of the NRA.

I've vacillated on this for years. Always a member (with only a couple of lapses) but never dropping the hammer on Life Membership. It is happening now. I want to thank all those who helped me with my decision.

A Savage 99 Purchase Through Guns America & my FFL Dealer

I recently posted that I was looking for one of these 1972-1984 era Savage 99As in .308 Winchester. I found one (the photo to the left) on and here is the description:
We have a Savage model 99 Series A in 308 Winchester. The gun has the straight grip and tang safety. The bluing is very fine and the bore is like a mirror. The butt stock has a crack in it but it doesn’t move when stressed. The wood finish is very fine and the sights are all original. $455 plus $35 shipping in a new hard case and UPS approved outer box.
I took a chance on the crack that it is really nothing or can be repaired and a I bought a box of Acraglas just in case. The gun is otherwise what I wanted. Even if the .308 isn't my cup of tea, it seems to me that this gun is the most likely candidate for conversion to .358 Winchester.

After a couple of back and forth e-mails I sent the money in the form of a USPS MO to Dust2Dollars in Willamina, OR on the Nov. 7th. The money and FFL were sent via Priority Mail and should have arrived in Oregon on Saturday, the 10th which it did. Mark of Dust 2 Dollars contacted me and let me know that they would ship on Monday and forward the details at that time. Things were looking good!

Of course Mark DID let me know that the rifle had shipped on Monday the 12th and was due to arrive the 19th and he gave me the tracking number. Now I only had to wait. Fortunately, this is the middle of hunting season.

On Monday morning, the 19th, I checked the UPS tracking info only to find that delivery will be delayed until the 20th. I'm thinking, "this is just terrible!" Then I go hunting.

The hunting didn't pan out (of course) but the waiting did and today I picked up my rifle at Nuckols Gun Works in Staunton. As described but not exactly as I expected. Expectations are born of the interpretation one has of the copy written for the advertisement.

The main thing is that the crack appears to have been major damage when the toe of the stock was damaged. HOWEVER, it appears that the repair is a good one. My feeling is, that IF the stock breaks, I can properly bed the new stock and properly fit the buttplate and to the top tang. The gun functions as it should (so far, I haven't fired it) and the location of the "crack" shouldn't have any bearing on accuracy. For the price, era in which it was made, and so forth, I feel it was a fair deal.


- The Ninety-Nine - A History of the Savage Model 99 Rifle by Douglas P. Murray

Coyote, Hybrid, Does it Matter?

The link was posted to leverguns forum and the video is fascinating.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Gene Autry's Cowboy Code

Good rules to live by...

1. The Cowboy must never shoot first, hit a smaller weaker man, or take unfair advantage.
2. He must never go back on his word, or a trust confided in him.
3. He must always tell the truth.
4. He must be gentle with children, the elderly, and animals.
5. He must not advocate or possess racially or religiously intolerant ideas.
6. He must help people in distress.
7. He must be a good worker.
8. He must keep himself clean in thought, speech, action, and personal habits.
9. He must respect women, parents, and his nation's laws.
10. The Cowboy is a patriot.

Son's Birthday

Today is my son's birthday. He's 30 this year. Sure do wish he was going to be here for Thanksgiving. This photo is of us in June 2006. Happy Birthday David.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Rimfire Rifleman by Edwards Brown

I recently found Rimfire Rifleman by Edwards Brown and after briefly examining it noted that the book had quite a bit of information about competitive smallbore rifle shooting. Noting the publication date, I thought it would be pretty dry. It isn't. The authors use a story about a typical post WWII family, their neighbors and shooting buddies to provide the information they'd like to provide about smallbore (.22 rimfire) rifle shooting. I think that is a pretty neat aspect of the book.

Although it reads a bit like the screenplay for an episode of "Leave it to Beaver" sans Eddie Haskell, it reads well and it is easy to understand the shooting information provided. One might think it is a bit dated due to the 1947 era information provided, but the basics are all applicable to the current smallbore game. Indeed, some shooters are still using the same equipment.

I really like the book and I'm glad I bought it. I'm hoping that I'll get my grandchildren to either read it or perhaps, I'll read it to them...

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Son-in-law Scores

My son-in-law got a 5 point deer weighing about 130 pounds field dressed. Shot at about 7:15 AM the opening day of muzzleloader season (yesterday). He uses a Knight in-line and the Red-Hot 250 gr. saboted bullets. You should see the damage those did on this deer.Got to see his deer and where he hunts. Had a good walk but didn't see any coyotes. His dad shot at one but apparently didn't connect. More reports to follow.

Thursday, November 08, 2007

.327 Federal, the .32 Maximum Comes to Fruition

They've been working on this sometime, or so it was rumored. Now, here it is the .32 Maximum or actually, the .327 Federal and will make its debut in the Ruger SP101. 1/8-inch longer than the .32 H&R, the cartridge is reported to nearly match the .357 Remington Magnum 125 gr. load for energy! Now that's remarkable. I would love to have a Contender carbine barrel for it. However, it would need to have a genuine .312" groove diameter just like the .32 H&R and not TC's usual adaptation using the .308 groove diameter. That would be unacceptable.

There's not a lot out there yet but here's some links.

- Shooting Times Article Lethal Combination - Federal Ammunition and Ruger Firearms introduce the .327 Federal Magnum & Ruger SP101 by Dick Metcalf
- Guns and Ammo Video
- Federal Cartridge Company press release
- The New .327 Federal Magnum in Ruger’s SP101 Compact Six-Shot Revolver by Jeff Quinn
- Freedom Arms Model 97 & Single Action Service Custom Ruger Revolvers Chambered for the New .327 Federal Magnum by Jeff Quinn

The more I think about this the more I like it, as a carbine cartridge. In a TC Contender, the .327 Federal would be sort of a .357 Maximum light. IOW, in some areas it could be what the .357 Max is in my area. That is, a small game (loaded with .32 S&W ammo, nearly silent) to small deer round. It would be a light recoiler, too! Of course it is pretty much a rimmed .30 Carbine or modern case .32-20 but heck, it could be fun. Just as with the .357 Maximum, the .327 Federal could be loaded with a carbide die set and no lube. That's quite an advantage.

A Must Read... A Fortunate Life by A. B. Facey

A Fortunate Life by A. B. Facey, ISBN 0-14-008167-4, was a gift to me from a thoughtful Australian friend, Bruce Scott. Written as he spoke, Mr. Facey tells of his life from 1894 to his wife's death in August 1976. He experienced quite a bit in his life and although he called it a fortunate life, his early years might be thought of as anything but fortunate. Yet, he overcame much to live a long and good life with his wife.

The book is an easy read, the story is fascinating, and I would have loved to have met and personally known Mr. Facey. You will too, after you read the book.

I have to say also that I was immediately put in mind of my grandfather, also a farmer much of his life, who was born in 1898, told in 1917 that he had only 6 months to live due to TB (discovered in his enlistment physical) and yet lived until 1974. It was another generation indeed. One to which hardships weren't disabling. I think that just maybe a few difficulties make life better appreciated.

Saturday, November 03, 2007

I'm Was Looking for a Savage 99 Rifle

As some of you might know I'm was sadly lacking a Savage 99 in my accumulation collection of leverguns. Sadly (according to some) I am so reactionary that I can't stand the pistol grips common on the model. I want a straight grip. I'm no Savage 99 purist though, and not looking for a collector model. What I'd prefer is a post 1972 Savage 99A in .250 Savage or .308 Winchester. I know they were made in .243 Win and .375 Win but I'm not really interested in either of those cartridges.

I guess I'd really rather have a .308 Winchester. I have brass, bullets and reloading dies already. I also have a Williams Foolproof for this model. I wanted to get one of these as my first big-game rifle but that wasn't in my budget at the time.

I don't have a big budget, but I've saved some few dollars towards the cause. The gun's condition is a touchy subject for most of us. I want a complete gun, with no serious rust problem, a good bore, and unaltered butt stock. I will know if it is ok when I see it.

If you would, could you keep your eyes and ears open for me? I'd much appreciate it. I've found one and am making the necessary arrangements. I'll post about it later!