Showing posts from January, 2014

Riot gun part 4: Danger radius and Rule Four

Rule Four of the rules of gun safety tells us to be sure of our target and what is beyond it. The idea is to eliminate mistaken identity shootings and collateral damage downrange. It is an important rule; all of them are. But it needs to be applied intelligently. You've heard the mantra: You are responsible for each projectile that you send downrange. Every shotgun pellet has a lawyer attached. You must not use buckshot beyond the range at which all the pellets will stay on the target. Otherwise pellets will sail past the target and cause incidents downrange. There is a flaw in that reasoning. Most shots fired in anger miss , and this is true for all types of firearms, so there is always a downrange hazard cone in a gunfight. The frequent advice that you switch to shotgun slugs beyond very short range is questionable on that ground. A miss with a slug produces a highly significant downrange hazard, an ounce of speeding lead, and a slug has a long danger radius. It is still fl

Riot gun part 3: Shooting while loading

I regard a repeating shotgun--either pump or autoloader, it doesn't much matter--as the best personal defense firearm available. Most personal defense emergencies, and nearly all self defense shootings that are later ruled justifiable, happen at short range. The shotgun is the best short range gun, so that is the gun to have. So runs my reasoning; it seems an obvious matter to me, but if you have a counter-argument, let me know in the comments. The most evident difficulty is that the shotgun does not hold a whole lot of ammunition and its tube magazine must be reloaded with single shells, one at a time. That at least is what is most common. There are a few box magazine shotguns around and some speedloader gadgets for tube magazine guns. But in general, what people find most practical is a tube magazine and some sort of ammo carrier--a butt cuff, a side saddle, or a belt or a bandolier--that supplies you with single cartridges. This setup offers the minimum bulk of gun and gear,

The New Remington Compact Pistol

Go here if you are keeping on top of developments in the compact concealed carry pistol marketplace: The Firearm Blog has the rundown on the new Remington R-51, a sleek pocket pistol for 9mm +P.  A .40 S&W version is planned. The gun borrows styling cues and locking method from the old Remington Model 51, which was an excellent pocket pistol from the 1920's era. The new gun is thoroughly updated and strong enough for modern defensive cartridges; the old-time inspiration for the new design was chambered for .32 and .380 ACP. I consider the .38 Special snubnose an indispensable sidearm. Up-to-date small auto pistol designs like this one lead me to reconsider, or at least to say that if you do not have a .38 snub, then you ought to have one of the new breed of small automatics designed for the same niche. I formed my preference for the small revolver back in an era when the small automatics were