Your Hump Day Reading List for Mar 16, 2016

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Today’s Hump Day Reading list looks at the legal and practical sides of self defense, plus a few things: a home invasion successfully ended by the defenders; good news for owners of 5mm Remington rimfire rifles; a robbery which ended tragically for the defender but didn’t need to; why you need to learn how to respond to an active shooter; why you need to understand the legalities of self defense; Greg Ellifritz shows you what you need to consider before ...

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Your Hump Day Reading List for Mar 9, 2016

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For this Hump Day we have an educational look at an actual attempted home invasion — from the intended victim himself; some resources for learning how to deal with an active shooter; some historical revolvers from a famous revolver shooter; trying to shoot a hole through titanium; a seasoned shooter finds out difficult it is to shoot a small gun; a blogger takes me up on a challenge; Greg Ellifritz analyzes what to do if you’re seated in your car ...

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Your Hump Day Reading List for February 10, 2016

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Hump Day brings us more knowledge! This week, we look at kids who’ve protected themselves with firearms; Ian McCollum with a very unique “automatic” pistol; Claude Werner looks at another negative outcome, this time based on unreasonable fear; tips for handloading ammo for your AR-15; why crowds are dangerous, and what to do if you’re in one; Greg Ellifritz has some lessons from a recent series of terrorist attacks; the repercussions of not having a good teacher; and the fallacy ...

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Your Hump Day Reading List for February 3, 2016

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Another great collection of articles for you this week! Rob Pincus shows you how to take your guns with you when flying; Ian McCollum takes apart a Savage .45 pistol; a look at why safety isn’t in the gear you carry; how to recycle range brass for reloading; a detailed explanation of what “going gray” really means; how to keep your defensive handgun in perfect operating condition; and why 100-yard headshots with a pistol don’t make any sense. Read, learn ...

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What self defense ammunition is best for the 9mm carbine?

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I’ve often said that I’m in favor of the pistol-caliber carbine, either autoloading or lever action, as a home and homestead defense weapon under some circumstances. Why the carbine? Because it affords the defender some advantages over the handgun as a defensive tool without the disadvantages of going to a full-powered rifle.

First, it’s easier to shoot to any given level of precision than a handgun. The carbine’s four points of contact with the body versus the single point of contact ...

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.22LR rifle reviews suck. Here’s why.

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The other day I posted an article to social media about Eley’s newest .22LR hunting ammunition, suggesting that people who’ve never tried really good rimfire ammo haven’t a clue how much difference in performance it can make in their rifles. That comment reminded me of a .22 rifle “test” I read a couple of months ago, one which reinforced a simple fact:

.22 rifle reviews suck.

Darned near all of them, anyhow (and I’m only hedging my bets on the off chance that ...

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Defensive Shooting Myths and Misconceptions: “If I’m limited to 10 rounds, they might as well be .45”

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I remember the days of the 1994 “assault weapons” ban: new magazines over 10 rounds were illegal, and even large double-stack 9mm pistols were required to come with 10 round magazines — and any replacements or additionals we bought were limited to 10 rounds, too. “There era of the ‘wondernine’ is over”, opined writer after writer.

Along with that came a new phrase from those picking which gun to buy: “if the government says I can only carry 10 rounds, they ...

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Your Hump Day Reading List for Dec, 16, 2015

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This week we take a look what to do AFTER you’ve defended yourself; paper really can stop bullets; Ian McCollum with another rare and unusual antique revolver; Massad Ayoob covers some court cases gun owners should be aware of; how a holster is made; the Ruger Mini-14 story; what delayed blowback looks like in action; and understanding why blunt trauma is a lethal threat.

 

If you only have time to read one article this week, make it this one.

Let’s say you’ve ...

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Your Hump Day Reading List for Nov. 25, 2015

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It’s almost Thanksgiving, and you know what I’m thankful for? All of the great articles I found this week! We’ve got Greg Ellifritz commenting on a particularly ridiculous gun article; some talk about talking with business owners who ban guns on their premises; Richard Johnson reviews an interesting new pistol caliber carbine; saving money while reloading ammunition; Claude Werner looks at the case of a woman who pulled her gun when she really shouldn’t have; and Ian McCollum has the ...

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Your Hump Day Reading List for October 21, 2015

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Congratulations — you made it to another Wednesday! Here’s this week’s collection of tips, information, and enlightenment, including how you can best use online articles and videos in your skill development; what ammunition you should carry in your .38 Special revolver; some alternative thoughts about pistol caliber carbines for self defense; a new concealed carry pistol makes its debut; how to deal with a threat that’s in contact with you; and some fun bullpup rifle shooting!

 

How to get the most ...

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The Bullpup Rifle Experiment, Epilogue: the Steyr AUG magazine choice – do you prefer Original or Less Reliable?

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Apparently this little series has established me as the “go-to guy” for Steyr AUG questions, because my email box has seen a big uptick in volume from people asking various things about the AUG and about bullpups in general. I’m glad that there’s so much interest in these intriguing firearms!

As I’ve said, the reason I did the “bullpup experiment” was to learn about them and to develop training doctrine for the private-sector shooter. This is especially important because so ...

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Self defense ammunition selection: how important is accuracy?

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An interesting question came into my mailbox recently: why don’t I ever list accuracy as a criteria for picking ammunition for self defense or for concealed carry?

It’s a valid question. After all, when you see a defensive ammunition test (either in a magazine or online), one of the prominent features is almost always an accuracy comparison  — how accurate it is compared to competing brands, how accurate it is out of various guns, and occasionally how accurate it is at ...

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Ogives: secant, tangent, and why the hell should I care? What’s an ogive, anyhow??

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There was a time when I was really into the 6.5/284 cartridge (back when it was still a wildcat.) It was a pain to load for, and I never really understood why until someone taught me about ogives.

You may have heard the word ogive bandied about in talk of bullet shapes. Simply, the ogive is that tapered (curved) part of the bullet in front of the driving or bearing surface. You can easily see the ogive in both ...

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What two questions should you ask of your self defense ammunition maker?

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ammo_choices

At SHOT Show 2015 I had a great conversation with a highly placed person at a well known ammunition company. What we talked about has implications for you and where you buy your defensive ammunition.

When I go looking for defensive ammunition for my handguns I have a few criteria: it has to function in my guns every time (0% failures to feed or fire) and it has to pass FBI Protocol ...

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Self Defense news from the 2015 SHOT Show!

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Unless you’ve been under a rock with regards to social media recently, you probably know that the 2015 SHOT Show happened in Las Vegas last week. I was there!

I almost wish I hadn’t been, however. It seems whenever I go to SHOT, I pick up a bug. No, not bedbugs — colds and flu!

With over 60,000 people in a fairly confined place, all of them handling the same products (especially products like rifles, which you put next to your ...

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Thoughts on the .30-30 Winchester – is it all it’s cracked up to be?

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The .30-30 Winchester, more properly known as the .30 Winchester Center Fire (WCF), is one of the most popular cartridges in the world. Why?
The .30WCF, more popularly known as the “thirty-thirty”, is a staple of deer hunting in this country. (Well, it certainly used to be, but I’m getting ahead of myself.) Introduced in 1895 ...
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Ed Harris says: “A Hillbilly Assault Rifle? You bet!”

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Ed Harris, ballistic experimenter extraordinaire, is back — this time with some details on his “lever action utility rifle”. As usual, he’s got some good ideas!
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Modern Sights to Upgrade the Lever-Action Utility Rifle
by C.E. “Ed” Harris, Gerrardstown, WV

I like the 1894 Marlin. I have three of them, in .357, .44 ...
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The Exploding Rifle Bullets Of World War II.

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A new episode of In Range TV went up the other day (now it’s FREE!), and it’s a great episode that taught me something new: exploding small arms ammunition was used by both Russia and Germany against enemy combatants during World War II. You thought those weren’t allowed? Well, sometimes things happen…
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I never knew this until a couple of weeks ago, ...
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The never-ending quest for the “perfect” rifle round, or: Grant is lusting for another lever action!

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I got a surprising amount of email on last week’s lever action article. Seems I’m not the only one with a fondness for the simpler things in life — nor for getting a new rifle just so I can have a different round to shoot!
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That article also got me to thinking about a particular interest of my own: .35 caliber rifle cartridges. I’ve often opined about the utility of the lever action in .357 ...
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Can you ever truly know how a bullet is going to work? Probably not, but if you’re very careful you can get close.

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Someone sent me an article on a gelatin test of some ammunition; I replied that I don’t put much stock in such things when done by amateurs. Why might that be?
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It happened again the other day: an online argument triggered by a gelatin test of a particular ammunition, one in which someone predicted the performance of the ammunition based on his own gelatin testing.

I don’t really pay much attention to these kinds of “tests”, because ...

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Ed Harris makes the .32ACP into a real tackdriver!

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Ed Harris returns, and this time he’s tackling a new mystery: why does the .32ACP have such a bad reputation for accuracy? As usual, Ed gets to the bottom of the problem!

(Which gives me an excuse to show a picture of one of my favorite autoloading pistols of all time, the Colt Model 1903 Hammerless in — of course — .32ACP!)

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Looking through the smoke and mirrors…
by Ed Harris

Much misunderstanding exists regarding ...

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What’s the best way to pick ammunition for self defense? Here’s how I do it.

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dsc08007

I received an interesting email the other day asking how I select defensive ammunition. Here’s how I go about picking the load that rides in my self-defense handguns!

Dustin asks:

“I was wondering if you could give an overview of how you select defensive ammo for your revolvers. Do you accuracy test different loads? If so, at what distance do you expect the rounds to perform? How do you handle POA/POI issues with ...

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Ed Harris: How to Make and Load All-Brass .410 Shotshells.

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Ed Harris is back with another of his terrific articles! This time, it’s about making your own all-brass shotshells in .410.
(If you’re not familiar with Ed Harris, you should be. Ed is one of the best sources of technical information in the shooting world, and he’s always doing something interesting. His articles are always popular, and today he shares with you how to ...
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How much spare ammunition is “enough”?

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a850_10391

If you carry a gun for personal protection, you should always carry spare ammunition — but how many rounds should you carry?

Contrary to what Hollywood might lead us to believe, our guns do not carry an unlimited supply of ammunition. If you’re forced to use your gun against an attack it’s plausible (though in private sector self defense not likely) that you might run out of ammunition before that attack has finished, ...

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From my email inbox: what’s the best .22 ammunition for a rifle?

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A recent email asked about the accuracy of .22 ammunition, and which I found was the best in my rifles. I couldn’t answer that question, and here’s why!
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I’m sometimes amazed at the coincidences of life. I’m currently testing ammunition in a rather unusual (but awfully neat) .22 rifle for an upcoming article in Gun Digest, and at the same time I get an email from Anthony asking about .22 ammunition for a ...
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Ed Harris: Loading Cast Bullets In the 9mm Luger/Parabellum.

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rugerp85
It’s been too long since Ed Harris has graced our presence. He’s back, though, with an article about shooting cast bullets in 9mm — and, of course, with related stories about his days doing just that at Ruger. Enjoy!

Tales from the Back Creek Diary:
Loading Cast Bullets In the 9mm Luger/Parabellum

by Ed Harris, Gerrardstown, WV

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Lately, with ammo supplies in retail stores either drying up entirely, or becoming frightfully more ...
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Nosler announces a new 6.5mm rifle cartridge – but will it sell?

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The 6.5mm caliber offers tremendous possibilities but just can’t seem to make many inroads in the U.S. market. Can Nosler’s new hyper-performance iteration gain a following for my favorite mid-range bullet?
I must admit to being a big fan of 6.5mm rifle cartridges. I’ve only owned a few, but the 6.5mm caliber is interesting from a ballistic standpoint: its bullets are very heavy relative to their diameter, which gives it excellent penetration ...
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Head shots and ricochets.

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Can you count on your bullets always penetrating? You’d be surprised how little it takes to send them someplace other than where you intended!
It happens often in the blogging world: I think about writing on a topic, start collecting data, only to find that someone else has beaten me to the punch. That’s because, in a confined category like shooting or self defense, with enough people active sooner or later two of them will have the same idea. ...
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Would you use a .22 for self defense? Should you? Why not?

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One of the interesting things to come out of Greg Ellifritz’s study of ammunition effectiveness was how well the .22 Long Rifle worked – or, at least, appeared to work. By some measures, it performed better than the vaunted .45 ACP! There is a small but dedicated group of people out there who seized upon this data as proof that the .22 is in fact the most deadly cartridge ever made by man. After all, they insist, the figures don’t ...

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Are all gunwriters idiots?

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That’s a loaded question. (Sorry, but I just couldn’t resist the pun.)

That’s a question I ask every time I read yet another ridiculous article. Convoluted (or completely absent) logic, factual errors, reliance on outdated or inappropriately applied data are all issues with far too many writers. The “old days” weren’t much better, either; I can find articles from some of the past luminaries in the gunwriting game which aren’t exactly paragons of research or fact. They were, however, far more ...

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