Gun show

Originally published at Notes from the bunker…. You can comment here or there.

Local gun show this weekend. About the only thing that I was looking for were some small rifle primers. No luck. Or, more precisely, no luck at less than $30/m. Sorry, Im not paying that. My usual vendor had primers at $25/m but no small rifles. Once I accepted that defeat it was time to look around for the stuff that I just absolutely needed to have but just didnt know I needed. First up, and this was fate having a laugh at my expense, was a Filson Double Mackinaw Cruiser for $125. Size? 44-46. Okay…shrug outta my jacket…try it on …and…..just a tad small in the shoulders. Dammit, a 48 woulda done the trick. And it didnt help that when I started trying it on the guy said that he’d take $100 for it. I called a buddy of mine whom I thought it might fit and told him about it. He said to pick it up for him but, alas, when I went back the next day I had missed it by just ten minutes. Not meant to be, I suppose.

Firearms-wise, I didnt see much I couldnt live without. There seemed to be less ARs and AKs than at previous shows and magazines were a little thin too. Plenty of hunting arms of various calibers and configurations. In a sign of the times, there was a fella walking around with an ALICE pack on his back and a cardboard sing taped to it that read “BUG OUT BAGS $20, $40 WITH FRAME”. I wanted to get a picture of it but its always a dicey thing to start snapping pictures in a gun show.

Johnny Trochmann wasnt in attendance which was kind of a letdown since I wanted to pick up a few parachute flares and some other specialty items. This was a smallet-than-usual show so perhaps he was attending a larger one elsewhere.

Ran into a handful of people who I knew from the shows. A lot of these guys are up in their years and invariably the conversation turns to ‘did you hear about…’ and I learn that onel of the old timers has passed on. Gun shows, at least attending them habitually, is an old mans game. A lot of these guys are retired and gor them its a fun social thing to do, travelling to a different town every weekend to sell guns and swap stuff with each other. I remember when I started doing gun shows I was the youngest person at the show with a table. That was …hmmm….about 20-someodd years ago. Of course, gun shows were a bit different then. For one thing ours was held in a Fraternal Order of Eagles lodge so, since they had a liquor license and bar, as the evening wore on the deals became more and more interesting as the constituency became more and more tipsy. Good times.

Totally absent from this show was the guy who was here last time with the FN-made FAL that he wanted $2500 for. Sure it was in great shape and all, but $2500 was pushing the envelope. Nonetheless, a friend of mine, who loves him some FAL action, offered the guy a 100 oz. bar of silver. At the time silver was right around $24.75 an ounce, I think. The dealer, who really was a bit of a jerk, declined. Had he showed some brains and accepted my buddy’s deal he would have about $4000 right now for that FAL that is still worth ‘only’ $2500. I was hoping to see him there so I could remind him of this but it was not to be.

Anyway, I wound up with an 8# keg of powder for $45, a new Safariland paddle holster for my Glock for $20, a few shellholders and some other sundry items. Anytime I get out of a gun show without spending more than $100 I chalk it up as a win.

Article – 5 Ridiculous Gun Myths Everyone Believes (Thanks to Movies)

Originally published at Notes from the bunker…. You can comment here or there.

Even in gun-crazy America, most of us aren’t shooting things as part of our day-to-day routine. So most Americans actually know very little about guns. Hollywood writers realized this a long time ago and, being writers, used it as an excuse to never do any fact-checking ever again.

There’s a lot more than five, but this hits some of the highlights.

Food, inventory, Glock mag fail

Finished up an inventory the other night. I was mentioning to the missus exactly what we had in the way of long term food storage (which is completely different from the short- and mid-term storage we have) and she nodded approvingly and said “Sounds like we’re done on the long term food”. I blinked a couple times and for some reason my brain seemed to have a hard time getting into gear after that. She was, for the most part, right and it had never occurred to me that there actually might be a point where you could say “We’re done”. So I mulled it over, looked at the numbers, did some sample menus in my head, and it looks like it actually might be at the stage where its ‘enough’. I would like to round off a few ‘broken’ cases where a box of six only has five in it, but otherwise…. Of course, more is better but I think we’d be okay with just what is on hand at this moment. How odd…I’d never thought that there’d be a point where I could wrap up this particular aspect of preparedness and move on to another. I knew that, in theory, theres a point where you sit back and say “Ok, now we’re good to go” I just didnt think I’d actually hit it.

Of course, this is just on long term foods. Theres still plenty of other things to work on, and some stuff is always ongoing, but the most urgent and obvious ones seem to be taken care of to the point that they are at a level I can feel comfortable with.

Now, I bet youre just chomping at the bit to ask what the duration of that food supply is…six months? A year? Two years? Five? Something I’ve noticed is that no matter how much of something you have, there is always someone who wants to bust your stones about it. If I said I had two years supply of food someone will say ‘but what are you going to do after two years?’. If I said I had a five year supply theyd ask ‘what are you going to do after five years’. And, honestly, I think its a pretty annoying game of one-upmanship and I don’t want to get into it. Theres a point where you have to figure that civilization will get back on track and the stores will have food on the shelves again. We have enough that Im comfortable that if the wheels fly off of civilization in a major way we’re going to be just fine for quite some time.
How do I do inventory? Usually its pretty simple. I grab a clipboard, pen, paper, and start making lists. I find it to be a relaxing activity. Its usually late at night, I have a small radio tuned to Coast-to-Coast or some other bizarre talk format, and I go through boxes and shelves making lists as I go along. When its done I usually transcribe everything into spreadsheets and print out copies to keep and use as checklists as things get used up. At a glance, I can tell you how many AA batts, packages of freeze dried chicken, or paper towels we have tucked away. If youre going to take your preparedness seriously, you really have no choice but to keep inventories…otherwise you waste resources buying things you dont need any more of.
Ordered a bunch of the Korean Glcok mags for the wife’s ‘new’ .40 competition gun. I’d tried the 9mm mags in the past and found them to be virtually indistinguishable from the factory Glock magazines in use and construction. So much so, in fact, that I have several dozen of them tucked away. So when we needed some .40 mags it seemed like a good idea to get the Korean ones for about $7 each. Unfortunately, while the 9mm ones were great the .40’s are all getting returned. Quite simply, they dont fit in the magazine of the gun…oh, they’ll go in if you really work ‘em in with some elbow grease but any idiot can tell from the exertion that there is something Not Right. Tried several of the mags in three different guns. All were lousy fits. Not a really big deal, they’ll be returned with no problem; but theres an important lesson here – try any new magazine in the gun before you tuck it away somewhere. I have a huge(!!!) pile of G3 mags and I sat there and ran every single one through the rifle to make sure they fit the magazine well. Tedious process, oh yeah. Worth it for the peace of mind? Most definitely.

So, the Korean mags, which are at various times referred to as Kang or KCI or Korean contract mags, are, in my experience, just fine in 9mm but should be avoided in the other calibers.

Article – Japan crisis spurs survival planning by U.S. Mormons

Originally published at Notes from the bunker…. You can comment here or there.

SALMON, Idaho (Reuters) – While the nuclear crisis in Japan unfolds a continent away, Mormon-dominated communities in the western United States say the disaster overseas is bringing close to home a lesson about preparing for the worst.

Emergency planning and the long-term storage of food, water and medical supplies are central practices by the 14 million worldwide members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

The tradition stems from doctrine – “If ye are prepared ye shall not fear” – established by Joseph Smith when he founded the church in 1830 in upstate New York. It also stems from the persecution that drove his early followers from the Midwest to the Rocky Mountains in 1847.

Which just underscores that I really need to get up to the cannery and round out a few things.

Article – The “Safest” States in the United States

Originally published at Notes from the bunker…. You can comment here or there.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency keeps track of the number of declared emergencies in each state. This doesn’t exactly equate with least dangerous places to live, but it is interesting to note that since 1953, Rhode Island, Utah, and Wyoming have declared the fewest number of disasters with eight each.

On the whole, Montana has been, for me, a rather safe place to live. I’ve felt exactly one earthquake in 25 years, had no blizzards, and have just generally been living a queit and safe existence. Oh, 2000 was a remarkable year for forest fires and the town filled with smoke, but other than that….nothing.

Some say that they Yellowstone ubervolcano will begoing off soon and that anyone within several hundred miles will be toast, but I’m pretty skeptical.

This is not to say that Montana doesnt have its moments….there was a pretty big quake back in the 50’s, superstitious religions set up camp here from time to time, some parts of the state are getting pretty dry, and, of course, our economy has always been a little shaky. Still, I’d say its a better place in terms of safety than many other states…especially the coastal ones with large populations, or the southern ones with immigration issues.