Sports equipment

Obama is the best gun salesman ever

ŠĒ• American Hunter

Obama is simply the number one gun sales man in the world since Samuel Colt and John Browning departed this mortal coil. He has probably sold more guns than even Mikhail Kalashnikov.

After receiving more than one million order requests in the first quarter of 2012 alone, Sturm, Ruger & Co.has temporarily suspended the acceptance of new orders.

Ruger CEO¬†Michael O. Fifer¬†said that despite the company’s continuing efforts to increase production, the incoming order rate exceeds Ruger’s capacity to rapidly fulfill the orders. The temporary suspension is expected to last until the end of May.

Ruger’s success is part of what led the company to expand on its existing “Million Gun Challenge” with the NRA. The fundraiser became the “1.2 Million Gun Challenge” at SHOT Show 2012. The final results will be announced at the¬†2012 NRA Annual Meetings¬†in St. Louis, MO.

ŠĒ• The Firearm Blog

Gun control kills jobs

The evidence is growing that gun control inhibits growth and jobs:

Ever since Barack Obama was sworn in as president, the economy has misfired. Jobs remain scarce and the market has yet to recover the value it had prior to the 2007 crash. Though Mr. Obama’s policies have unintentionally given a major boost to an industry he hates Рfirearms Рeven this one bright spot hasn’t necessarily translated into new employment.

Take Sturm Ruger Co., one of the few publicly traded U.S. gunmakers. Anyone who happened to invest $100 in the firm’s stock on Mr. Obama’s Inauguration Day would have about $532 today. That’s stellar performance in any business climate. According to company filings, Ruger had orders in hand for twice as many guns as it had the capacity to manufacture. Under ordinary circumstances, such sustained demand would be a green light to expand production lines and make new hires.

Unfortunately, Ruger, like most corporations, is afraid of what the Obama administration has up its sleeve. ‚ÄúThe company believes that the lawful private ownership of firearms is guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the United States Constitution and that the widespread private ownership of firearms in the United States will continue,‚ÄĚ Ruger told the Securities and Exchange Commission. ‚ÄúHowever, there can be no assurance that the regulation of firearms will not become more restrictive in the future and that any such restriction would not have a material adverse effect on the business of the company.‚ÄĚ Between 2007 and 2010, Ruger added just 10 employees.

As some states tighten their gun control laws gun manufacturers look at moving to states that are friendlier to their industry:

The regulation-minded states need to realize what Florida and Virginia already understand. Firearms sales and ownership are at an all-time high, while crime remains at an all-time low. Gun control doesn’t save lives or reduce crime; it just destroys jobs. Federal and state lawmakers could give the economy a real stimulus by repealing these obnoxious statutes once and for all.

Wednesday Weapons – Tikka T3 Lite Stainless

On my drive back from Palmerston North I stopped off in Taupo to go to the NZDA range so I could finish off sighting in my new Tikka T3 Lite Stainless rifle from Hamills Manukau.

Tikka T3 Stainless Lite, Left hand, Gun Works Suppressor and Zeiss Conquest Scope

I had previously blogged asking readers for a choice of calibre. I had pretty much decided on a Tikka T3 for a number of reasons, but still needed to choose the calibre. I selected .308 because I decided that this was to be a bush hunting rifle with the ability should I need it to reach out to 600m. Mostly though it will be used in the bush and not for longe range.

I decided in Tikka for a couple of reasons. Firstly because they offered a left-hand version. Remington did too in .308 but their offering has a varmint stock with a heavy barrel and it just didn’t shoulder right for the way I hold a rifle. The Tikka snaps up cleanly to the shoulder and straight into position. I just feels right and that is one of the most important factors is fast accurate shooting.

The Tikka weighs in at a light and handy 2.8kgs. The technical specifications explain the rifle like this:

The TIKKA T3 LITE STAINLESS is based on a two locking lug T3 all-weather action. Bolt features spring loaded plunger ejector and it can be easily stripped down for maintenance. Bolt and receiver are made of stainless steel.The single-column detachable clip MAGAZINE holds 3-4 cartridges. Single-column 4-6-shot (depending on caliber)magazine is available as accessory (not in Short Mag calibers).The single-stage TRIGGER pull is adjustable from 1 kg to 2 kg (2 to 4 lbs). Safety is two stage type and locks the trigger and the bolt handle when engaged. All models are available with a single-set trigger as option.The STOCK is made of glass-fiber reinforced copolymer polypropylene and has a butt plate system where the length of pull is adjustable by means of spacers. Straight stock features ambidextrous palm swell.TIKKA T3 LITE STAINLESS is supplied without OPEN SIGHTS. Integral rails for the scope mounts are on the top ofthe receiver. Receiver is also tapped to receive standard (Weaver) scope mount bases.The free-floating, stainless steel BARREL is cold hammer-forged. Non Magnum models available also with short barrel with thread (calibers 338 Federal, 8x57IS and 9.3×62 M15x1, other calibers M14x1) at the muzzle for muzzle brake or suppressor assembling.

Gunworks Canterbury Muzzle capMy barrel wasn’t threaded for a suppressor but I was so impressed with the work done by GunWorks Canterbury on my 17HMR that I sent this away for a suppressors to be fitted as well. I chose a full over-barrel suppressor but didn’t opt to shorten the barrel. Again the work done is superb with a nice screw cap at the muzzle for when I won’t be using the suppressor.

While I am talking about the suppressor, I have to rave on a bit about just how effective these are. Now I am no sook when it comes to shooting. I have fired everything from a .22 to a .50cal and I am not one to moan about recoil or noise. You certainly don’t get to complain about noise hanging onto an M2 or a L7A1 or a C9 when you let strip with a belt. SLRs aren’t any quieter and don’t get me started on bullpup weapons like the Steyr AUG.

However this suppressor rocks. I reckon it gives a 50-70% reduction in perceived sound. The .308 now doesn’t even roar, it sounds like a .22 Magnum and only barely. I swear my 17HMR without the suppressor is louder. The guy on the range beside me couldn’t believe it and he knew all about muzzle¬†blast¬†and noise firing his .25-06 Sako A7.

Not only does the suppressor take away noise but it makes the felt recoil a whole lot less too. Gunworks reckons felt recoil is reduced by 50%, I believe them.The Sako guy was definitely off to book his rifle in for s suppressor after he fired my rifle.

When I got the rifle from the team at Hamills, Zee adjusted the trigger to a nice crisp break. This trigger breaks like glass and catches you by surprise as it does, every time. I love it. I also got the new set trigger T3 that is available and this is something special. You just push the trigger forward till it clicks and the trigger is set. Then it just snaps and fires perfectly every time.

Taupo range and my Tikka T3I previously blogged about the Zeiss Conquest 3.5-10×44¬†MC with a Rapid-Z 600 ret¬≠i¬≠cle¬†I put on the rifle. This scope rocks. The light gathering ability makes a huge difference. As I said earlier there was a guy with a Sako A7 .25-06. He had just bought the rifle and was sighting it in. Sako make beautiful rifles. They charge accordingly for their beautiful rifles.¬†Ironically¬†Tikka rifles are made in the same factory from the same barrel blanks, however their rifles are more than $1000 cheaper.

We got chatting, as you do while you are waiting for barrels to cool and he asked about my rifle and scope. He asked what they were worth and made choking sounds. He then told me about the hot deal that he had scored from the chaps at Hunting and Fishing. His rifle came with a Burris scope. As we got chatting though it became clear that he was frustrated with seeing the target and as a consequence was also spraying his shots. He couldn’t believe anyone would spend more on a scope than what he had. In the end seeing is believing and so I handed him a mag and said go find out. He took up the offer for a couple of reasons…to try out the suppressor, to check out the scope, and well, free ammo offered by a complete stranger is always a good score.

Well I nearly had to fight him for my rifle back. He was now convinced on all counts, the suppressor, and having sat next to him while he blasted away with the .25-06 I certainly know why, and also on the scope. He just couldn’t believe the clarity and the light-ness through the scope. He exclaimed that he could see all his shots on the target. I just grinned. This was why I get my gear from Hamills in Manukau. They know their stuff, they know their gear and more importantly they take the time to learn, listen and understand the needs of their customer. The Sako guy isn’t happy, he now doesn’t trust Hunting and Fishing advice and more importantly he probably won’t go back there. None of that is my fault, I just gave the guy my rifle to shoot.

Anyway I digress, but the next part links to the Sako part of the story. As I mentioned Sako rifles are superb, but they do cost a lot more than their cousins from Tikka. Sako tout the A7 as a guaranteed 1MOA rifle.

Sometimes, a firearm’s accuracy will be measured in MOA. This simply means that under ideal conditions, the gun with certain ammunition is capable of producing a group of shots whose center points (center-to-center) fit into a circle, the average diameter of circles in several groups can be subtended by that amount of arc. For example, a¬†1 MOA rifle should be capable, under ideal conditions, of shooting an average 1-inch groups at 100 yards, a¬†2 MOA rifle an average 2-inch groups at 100 yards, etc.

In laymans terms if is accurate. Tikka simply states that they state:

just incredible out-of- the-box accuracy, silky smooth operation and uncompromising reliability with Sako’s beautiful finish and rigorous attention to detail as standard. With the Tikka T3, you hit one of the most difficult targets in the shooting world: true value.

Out of the box accuracy of the Tikka T3Now this is where I get hard. This rifle is accurate. Bloody accurate. In fact after sighting in I was able to shoot several sub-MOA groups, off a Harris bipod. Paul at Hamills can’t believe it, but the proof is in the targets. We are going to work up some custom loads now and shoot off a sandbag and see how close we can get the group. At Taupo I was using Federal Power Shok 150gr factory ammo. I was very impressed. Tikka certainly does have incredible out-of-the-box accuracy. It might not be guaranteed but when you are saving over $500 over an A7 you can put that in your scope, and that brings me back to Sako guy. Sure he got a theoretically better rifle, but by sticking a stink scope on it he¬†diminished¬†the capabilities of the rifle. However I think his biggest problem was that he was just a tits shooter. After I plugged the group shown here I gave him a magazine and he sprayed it all over the target. The problem was his rifle/scope combination or even mine, the problem was him, and given his flinching with the awful .25-06 I can understand why.

The Tikka T3 can’t really be beaten at the price point that it is. So far I can’t fault the rifle, the scope or the suppressor. Now it is time to take it off the range and go knock over some deer, goats or other varmint that readers need me to come take care of.

I have learned a couple of things too. Not all gun stores are equal, nor is their advice. I highly recommend the folk at Hamills Manukau for the best of advice. Any time you go in there they are chatting with loads of happy customers. The other I have learned is that value for money is hard to find and you certainly get it with a Tikka T3, add on a quality scope and your smile will be from ear to ear.

I will blog later on the benefits of getting out in the field with a good gun or rifle in hand and enjoying oneself again. Boy I have missed shooting and it is a real pleasure to once again enjoy the sport. It is made even more pleasurable with great toys and great mates.

Now all I need is some nice spots to control the pests that abound. Let me know through the tipline if you have anything that needs dispatching. With a 17HMR , a .308 and a 12ga Beretta there isn’t anything I can’t sort out for you.

Friday Firepower – Zeiss Conquest 3.5-10×44 MC

Regular readers may know that I was looking to decide on a calibre for my new deer rifle. I decided to get a .308 Winchester. I also decided on a rifle as well but that is for another post.

Today i want to review the scope I chose for the project rifle. Once again I have used the expertise of Zee at Hamills Manukau and his able staff. I have found them to be the most knowledgeable and helpful shooting sports staff in Auckland. I am fussy and do tend to be a know-it-all when it comes to firearms, but these guys suck it up and still offer great advice. When they say something about a rifle/scope combination is a wise person that listens to them.

So, onto the scope I chose and the reasons I chose it.

Since I decided that a bush rifle with possibility of longe range was to be the preference we decided that a medium power scope but decent objective lens would be best fro its light gathering abilities. For that reason we chose the Zeiss Conquest¬†3.5-10×44 MC with a Rapid-Z 600 reticle on the off chance I get to knock over some deer or goats out to 600m.

Zeiss Conquest 3.5-10x44 MC

The techinical specifications are as follows:

Conquest
3.5-10×44 MC
Magnification
3.5-10x
Effective Lens Diameter
44 mm
Exit Pupil Diameter
12.6-4.4 mm
Twilight Factor
9.9/20.9
Field of View (ft/100 yards)
35.1-11.7 ft
Diopter Range
+2/-3 dpt
Eye Relief
3.5 in
Parallax-Free (yds)
1001
Square Adjustment Range (in/100 yds)
64.9
Adjustment per Click (in/100 yds)
1/4
Center Tube Diameter
1 in
Eye Piece Tube Diameter
41 mm
Objective Tube Diameter
50 mm
Nitrogen Filled
yes
Reticle in Image Plane
2
Length
12.7 in
Weight
15.87 oz

I also chose the Rapid-Z 600 reticle.

The four state-of-the-art RAPID-Z¬ģ ballistic reticles by Carl Zeiss offer long-range hunters the supreme advantage of precision aiming with accurate holdover and wind-corrected information for shots at extended distances – without complication. And because the reticle is located in the second image plane, there is minimal target cover, even at high magnification. Combined with an integrated ranging feature, all the information you need to make clean, precise shots from the greatest distances is displayed clearly within the scope. Eliminating the need for estimation or timely calculations.

RAPID-Z¬ģ ballistic reticles feature numbered holdover lines that correspond to target distances and wind compensation hashes to correct for crosswinds. Once the distance and crosswind has been determined the corresponding holdover line is placed over your target for a precise shot, even from long range.

Handily Zeiss has a ballistic calculator on their site as well for calculation of the necessary sighting information to sight in the rifle on a 100m range for a 200m zero point.

NZDA Taupo RangeWhen I sighted in the rifle it was a cold and windy day in Taupo, and it was also quite dark as storm clouds rolled in. The NZDA range in Taupo is well set-up and visitors can bowl up and put a $2 donation in the can and use the range. It is well set up on the 100m range with decent solid (concrete) bench rests. The range lighting is somewhat dark and green though because of the backdrop.

Though it was dark on this day the sight picture offered by the Zeiss was crisp and clear. I was easily able to pick out exact bullet placement on the target at 100m. It was very easy to acquire the target and with correct diopter setting a beautiful crisp in focus sight picture was a real pleasure.

The rifle and scope were bore-sighted at Hamills and it was¬†initially¬†off the paper…though with a good spotter I could see it was high. A few clicks later it was shooting on the paper and then it was simple maths after that to adjust the point of impact into the bullseye. Adjustment is easy and positive with the windage and elevation adjustments. No fiddly screw drivers needed and the¬†adjustment¬†dials under the caps are easily done with large hands like mine. Once zeroed you can even pull up the click stop mechanism on the elevation and windage dials and set the zero mark of the graduated ring to the index mark. This is so you can relocate the original setting when the reticle is later adjusted for other ranges and loads.

I can’t wait to get the sight out into the bush now the rifle is sighted in properly. So far I am very, very happy with the advice and also the result from the chaps at Hamills.

Stay tuned for the rifle review in the next couple of days.

Sunday Shooters – Savage 93R17GLV

I have been wanting a .17HMR rifle for some time and have been looking around and canvassing opinion.

I also have one preference now I am a bit older and more fussy and don’t like sharing. I wanted a left-hand rifle.

After much discussion, some helpful, most not, I decided to listen to “Zee” and the good folk at Hamills Manukau and get a Savage 93R17GLV. Basic specs are:

  • Left Hand Rimfire Rifle
  • 17 HMR
  • 21″ Heavy Barrel
  • Bolt Action
  • Walnut Stock
  • Blue Finish
  • Accutrigger
  • 5 Rds

On top of this I got the fellas at Gunworks Canterbury to add a suppressor package to it. They did a fantastic job on the barrel including creating, in the unlikely event I will dispense with the suppressor, a nice cap to go on the thread and also created a nice target crown to the end of the barrel.

The can adds a bit of weight but it isn’t noticeable on the end of the heavy barrel.

I also added a Remington Bi-pod and a Tasco World Series 4-16c 40mm Scope with a Vital Zone Reticle.

This is the end result.

Whaleoil's 17HMR Savage

The rifle has an AccuTrigger. I haven’t used one of these before but after spending the afternoon sighting it in I must say I am now a fan.

The AccuTrigger gives the shooter the flexibility to set the trigger pull to individual preference without have to pay a gunsmith to adjust it. Also, even when adjusted to its lowest setting, the AccuTrigger is completely safe and cannot accidentally discharge during normal use from being jarred or dropped when maintained and adjusted as intended. A newly designed teardrop safety is an additional feature on rifles with the AccuTrigger. It provides for better acquisition of the safety button and operates smoother and quieter. Enhanced accuracy is another benefit of the Savage AccuTrigger, is the crisp, clean light trigger pull allows the shooter to maximize the accuracy potential of the rifle.

Yes, I like the AccuTrigger. The break after the AccuTrigger is depressed is crisp with no discernable jerk. Having gotten used to the apalling trigger on my old Ruger 10/22, this trigger is pure pleasure.

Sighting in was straight forward and right out of the box the groups were acceptable at 100m. The more I shot the better it got. I was running the rod through after each shot at the start but eventually I put 20 shots through uncleaned.

I was still getting used to the sight picture and the AccuTrigger when I posted this little group at 100m (left).

The rifle was tight to start with but as more sots went through items like the bolt travel, mag release and magazine load got easier.

I found one little annoyance, but that may be me, and that was the last round in the mag seemed to hang on the load as the bolt travelled forward. I will fire a few more rounds though before saying that it is a problem.

All in all though I am very impressed with the accuracy of this rifle out of the box, and i haven’t even started playing with the trigger yet and certainly haven’t yet mastered all the foibles of the scope and rifle at various distances.

With a rifle that is capable of hitting rabbit sized targets out past 200m it will pay to have a decent rangefinder though and also to practice shoots at that range so I can better judge the required reticle alignment.

The suppressor cuts out the sound of the rifle discharging but because the 17g and 20g bullets still travel at super-sonic speeds there is still a noticeable crack.

Very happy with the first outing though and I will pop in and tell “Zee” and folk at Hamills all about it. If you want good friendly expert advice without the poor attitude of some in the industry the Hamills in Manukau is the¬†place¬†to go. There is no snobbery nor is there the chain-store attitude of some other outlets. basically they are bloody good blokes…and Zee’s missus a good bloke too!

Wednesday Weapons – 85 Year old Sniper

Ted Gundy is a legend, he fought in the Battle of the Bulge and now at 85 years old he makes a 1000yd shot with a custom Remington 700.

Wednesday Weapons – Thompson/Center Pro Hunter

I have been looking for a new rifle, actually a series of rifles, lately. I’ve¬†come to the conclusion that one of these puppies would do me just nicely. Why have multiple guns when just one with interchangeable barrels would do. Though the other reason for multiple guns is because you never know when zombies may attack.

Still if you could only have one gun or rifle this would be it. Simple because it is so versatile.

The Thompson/Center Encore Pro Hunter system is ideal for a  multitude of applications.

My ideal combination of barrels would be:

.270 Winchester for general hunting. I usually knock over sika so this would be fine. (Fingers crossed some will perish this weekend)

.204 Ruger – for varminting…long range rabbits, goats, and small game

.17HMR – for varminting…zapping rabbits and possums

12 gauge shotgun…you have to have one really.

.50 Muzzle loader black powder….for fun.

Now to find a gun sponsor.

Would someone please tell the hand-wringers to take a hike.

ÔĽŅFarrar is outraged. It is his best post since the 2008 election.

The Herald reports:

Calls are increasing for skiers to be required by law to wear a standards-approved helmet on the slopes following a number of fatal skiing accidents.

Oh for fuck’s sake.

This is exactly how we feel when English or Pedobear do something stupid, only The Penguin gets wound up over ski helmets!

Penguins may hit the slopes but I doubt he’s ever been near a skifield.

Gun hysteria

Police Minister Judith Collins says the Government is looking seriously at legislation to restrict the sale of high-powered air rifles which are being blamed for two recent slayings in Auckland.

Police Sergeant Don Wilkinson died after he was shot with a FX Monsoon air gun while on a undercover drugs operation in 2008.

And now it has been revealed the same type of weapon was used in the slaying of Keith Kahi, 44, in the eastern Auckland suburb of Botany Downs nine days ago.

This is simply hysteria and based on total ignorance of firearms including air-rifles. The news article constantly refers to the FX Monsoon as “high-powered”. A check of the manufacturers specifications show that .177 calibre has a muzzle velocity of1000fps and the .22 version a muzzle velocity of 920fps.

By way of comparison a standard .22 long rifle cartridge generates not less than 1,080fps and up to 1,750fps. The air rifles could hardly be considered high-powered, just as no-one would dare call a .22 rimfire rifle “powerful”. In fact most air rifles these days are around 750fps -1000fps making the distinction between high-powered and low-powered almost impossible.

The other thing about legislation is that it doesn’t ever stop criminals from arming themselves. They simply ignore restrictions and legislation, that is why they are criminals. What it does do though is further dis-arm the general populace. It isn’t access to the weapons that is the problem, if that was the case then criminals wouldn’t have assault rifles, pistols and shoguns, for they are already far more restricted than air-rifles. The simple fact is that restrictions will not stop criminals arming themselves.

New Zealanders need to face up to reality that we have lost control of general society to criminals, who generally act with impunity and can count on an un-armed Police force.

The Police should be armed as a matter of cousre, and they should be trained appropriately. We also need to allow our general citizenry to defend themselves in the face of increasing violence in our drug addled society.

No-one has mentioned that the neighbours of these criminals who committed the latest shooting will have been living in mortal fear next door, knowing full well that there were armed criminals in there, yet unable to defend themselves because they were law abiding citizens.

If we need any reason for allowing the open carry of firearms in our society then Navtej Singh is it. He was abandoned to die for simply running a shop, while Police cowered unarmed behind their vehicles.

Let’s have a proper look at our gun laws and a proper look at our ability to defend ourselves, we need this because it is clear that the Police can’t protect us, they can’t even protect themselves. We need to take back our streets from the criminals. We need the right to keep and bear arms.