Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Gone shooting

I went to the range first thing this morning, but only stayed a short while. Last month I bought a 1965 vintage Colt Lightweight Commander (45 ACP) and I wanted to give it a quick test drive.

I didn't bring much ammo with me. As I said, I didn't want to stay very long, just long enough to see if this old Colt had any major issues.

I put a 50 round box of Winchester ball (230gr) ammunition thru it without a problem. I then tried some Federal "Hi-Shok" 230gr hollowpoints in it and experienced 2 FTF malfunctions (out of 20). The Federal stopped about halfway in but with a gentle push on the slide it fed the rest of the way. The recoil spring seemed strong enough so it's probably the feed ramp that is at issue. I've had older Colts like this before with the same problem. Since this was made before hollowpoint bullets became popular I really can't blame the gun.

I've had several old Colts that acted the same way, including a 1953 Government Model that I have carried for years. If the profile of the bullet is too flat they just won't feed without modifying the feed ramp. My '53 will load hollowpoints with a more rounded bullet design like the Remington Golden Saber. I expect this Commander will act the same.

Accuracy seemed average for what it is. The stock Colt sights aren't the easiest to hit with. This Commander recoiled more than I anticipated though. I been using steel frame 1911s for years. I wasn't used to this much snap.

This is a nice little Colt but I haven't decided if I'm going to carry it or not. If I was going to carry it regularly I would have to put better sights on it and correct the feeding issue, modifications that would destroy the collector's value of this pistol.

Sunday, October 05, 2014

People with guns collection # 75

DISABLED ARE ABLE SHOOTERS - Cincinnati, Ohio: Despite the loss of an arm and leg in the war, Charles Girard is an expert marksman and a crack member of the Disabled American Veterans National Headquarters Pistol Team. Girard is a DAV national service officer. The team has won numerous honors in local and national competition. 10/3/50

Saturday, October 04, 2014

Tour of duty

I just finished another stint of jury duty. Supposedly the entire selection process is completely random, but when your name comes up three times in ten years you have to wonder, especially when many of your fellow jurors had similar stories. I know people that have lived here their whole lives without ever being called. The only good news is that here in my county jury duty is two weeks while in most of Kentucky it is a month. In one county I believe it's actually six months. Well, I can stop worrying about it for a while, by law they can't hook me again for at least two years.

Wednesday, October 01, 2014

Tuesday, September 09, 2014

If you like historic photos ...

Check out THIS site. It has over 170,000 images from 1935 to 1945. One really nice feature is that you can go to the interactive map and actually search for photos from your area of the country, right down to the county you live in!

Monday, September 08, 2014

Gone shooting - Sig P556

I went to the range this morning. Perfect shooting weather, 65 and sunny. I've wanted to get my "new" Sig Sauer 556 pistol to the range since I bought it in July. I also had a Magpul 40rd magazine I recently bought and wanted to test too.

I brought along Winchester and Federal (55gr) and Federal (62gr) 5.56 ammunition as well as three sizes of Magpul mags. I should have brought some GI mags to test with it but forgot them. It'll have to wait until next time.

I started out the session by zeroing the gun. It was shooting a couple inches to the left for me but it was an easy fix with the Sig Diopter sight. After that, I shot 30 rds thru the pistol WITHOUT using the brace. I wanted to get a feel for how it handled when you didn't use it. I spent the rest of the time firing from a standing position while shouldering the brace.

Most of my firing time was with a standard USPSA/IPSC target. All shooting was at 25 yards.

There were no great revelations this morning; everything was just as I assumed it would be. Firing unsupported my groups were easily 2.5 times what they were when I shouldered the brace. They looked like a shotgun pattern, all over the "A" and "C" zones. Rapid fire (with any kind of accuracy) was nearly impossible.

The groups tightened up considerably when I used the brace. I was easily able to keep my shots in the big "A" zone. With a lot of concentration I could even keep my shots in the small "A" and the "B" area. The Sig has a 2 stage trigger that is a little on the heavy side with a lot of takeup. It is not match quality but once you get used to the feel it is more than adequate.

The gun ran flawlessly. I fired 140 rounds thru three different magazines without a malfunction. This gun really throws the brass though, about 25 feet at the 2 O'clock position.

As you would expect, muzzle flash and recoil with the 10-Inch barrel was greater than a carbine length one. But it was controllable even in rapid fire. That short barrel heats up real fast though!

The only downside this morning was that after I finished shooting I noticed the flash hider (appears to be a standard AR-15/M16 type) had come loose. I not really sure it was on there right to begin with.

I think I can say with some certainty that this Sig pistol is a "keeper" - as it is. But if the laws were to ever change and you couldn't have the brace I don't think I would want it. The thing is just a monster without it.