Monday, 28 September 2015 14:25

Taurus PT-22 Poly vs Beretta 21a Bobcat

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My Dad recently confronted a burglar and wanted some very small and lightweight. He preferred a semi-auto, but it needed to be able to fit into a robe pocket. Since he is older I worried about his ability to be able to rack a semi-auto slide under stress or late at night. The first pistol I thought of was the Beretta 21a Bobcat because of the tilt barrel making loading/unloading simple. But, I couldn't find one (he can't have mine). He actually wanted a 25ACP. I personally prefer the 22LR but I thought the straight wall cartridge might feed better, especially if the pistol isn't kept clean and well lubricated--something I find that the Bobcat requires. The Bobcat does not like to be run dry.

What I did find him is a Taurus PT-22 Poly. He is already a Taurus fan and a has a Taurus 85. Additionally he likes "features" like the internal lock and safety (on a DAO?) I have to remember it is not for me.

Here are some pics with my notes comparing it to my Bobcat.

  • I was genuinely surprised at the PT-22 grip. It is much larger than the Bobcat. The magazine also has an extended base plate that is wide and long
  • The PT-22 is a DAO pistol
  • The PT-22 has a magazine disconnect safety that also locks the slide
  • Both pistols have a locking safety. The Bobcat can be locked cocked and locked or with hammer-down DA
  • Disassembly is the same but note that the magazine must be in the PT-22 to move the slide
  • The PT-22 is supposed to be .8 ounces lighter than the Bobcat - they feel the same.


Click on pic to enlarge


The PT-22 in the box.


Comparison pic PT-22 (L) vs Bobcat (R)


Bobcat on top - pretty close in size overall


You can see how much wider the base plate is on the PT-22.


PT-22 baseplate lets you get an extra finger on the grip


PT-22's feed ramp (right) is much more extended
The tilt barrel is cool - makes it easy to load/unload and requires no hand strength to function the slide


Bobcat vs PT-22 magazine. Size difference is immediately apparent


PT-22 front sight is taller


PT-22 rear sight groove is also larger. Note that the PT-22 has a bobbed hammer


Note the triggers are cut differently especially the bottom hook on the PT-22 (top). The material and thickness seem the same.
How do they compare? It is probably not fair since my Bobcat is 10-20 years old and very well broken in - it is smooth as butter in SA or DA.
The Taurus is of course safety heavy. It snaps clean though (remember to use an empty case or risk breaking the firing pin!)


For some reason the pistol comes with a bag as does the internal lock.
I am not a fan but my Dad likes them.


I included this from the manual because they have some very strong feelings on +P and +P+ ammo.
To be fair the manual also does talk about using the safety if you "must" carry it loaded whereas a lot of other manufacturers just say not to.



Thursday, 24 September 2015 07:30

Portable Lockboxes: Gun Vault NV300 vs Hornady TriPoint

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I am sure that we all have encountered that place where we cannot legally bring a firearm. I am sometimes forced to leave it in my vehicle or hotel room, etc.  As a result I have been using a Gun Vault NV300 for about a year primarily leaving it in my vehicle, sometimes dragging it into a hotel room or even at home (when leaving a loaded firearm on the night stand may not be a good idea).

I have been happy with it, but decided to purchase a second lock box for the home so I can leave it there to use whenever I need it. I also had the idea that a 3-digit combination in the car was not a good idea since I can be gone from the car for hours - If you have the time, there are only 1000 possible combinations to go through. The box itself is also very small and light, so I thought maybe a bigger/heavier one might be better and hoped for a beefier lock mechanism.

I purchased the Hornady TriPoint for these reasons. They were both in the $30 range and use a similar setup: locking box padded with foam and both have a cable lock attachment (a hole drilled through the side) that you can loop it onto something stable to keep it secure. Basically it works like a bicycle cable lock.

The Hornady is definitely larger and heavier. This actually was a detriment in my case. It was noticeably harder to hide as the Gun Vault was able to slip under my front seat and be easily covered with the floor mat. The Hornady was very noticeable. I am going to try getting an additional floor mat and make it look like a part of the car (just another unexplained hump?). The big advantage to the Hornady for me are the three locking points vs the single latch of the Gun Vault (see pics below). Another plus to me is that it uses a barrel lock key. I think the pics will explain better than I can write.

Click on any pic for full-size

Here you can see the physical size difference and 3-digit combo vs barrel lock:



Here they are both opened up:


Another pic for size comparison:

Here is the Hornady 3-point latch system (aka "TriPoint" ):



Single latch of the Gun Vault NV300:



Hornady's 3-points locking points in the frame:



Closeup of one of the Hornady's locking points:



Here is a closeup of the Gun Vaults locking point. Not sure why there are 2 notches since it only has a single latch:



Here are both the units open. Notice that they hinge open on opposite sides (Gun Vault top, Hornady bottom):



Closeup of the Hornady cable. Notice that the side that actually goes in the lock box has a spacer:



Close up of the Gun Vault. The diameter of the 2 cables is about the same although the Gun Vault might be a little thicker. Notice that the loop-through loop is noticeably has a larger opening. This makes it much easier to attach it to things:




For fun here is a pic of the underside of my Jeep Grand Cherokee (WK) seat where I looped the cable through a bar:


Here is an alternate Jeep Grand Cherokee (WK) mounting point. Underneath the passenger seat. I then stretched the cable forward and placed the box under the driver's seat. Makes it easy to access from the rear passenger seat.



At home or hotels I attach it to anything that I can. I usually attach it to the bed frame. They can take the box but they will have to take the bed frame with them. I am going to see if I can hide the Hornady, I feel safer with it since it (appears) to be more pry resistant. If I can't however, I will just switch it out for the Gun Vault and keep the Hornady at home.

However, either of these boxes is a worthy investment at about $30. As always, safety first!

Tuesday, 01 September 2015 06:01

Stories of the Death of 40S&W are Greatly Exaggerated

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40 ounces – wait - what?

To be honest, when the 40S&W came out in in 1990 I was under-whelmed. I felt that the flexibility of the 10mm was close to ideal and that the 40S&W would never catch on. I actually was a fan of Evan Whildin's of Action Arms Limited (think Uzi) 41 Action Express. Ironically, the 41AE was designed to replicate the 41 Magnum which itself was designed as the “ideal” law enforcement cartridge (according to Bill Jordan et al)

But I was sure wrong about the 40S&W! At the time it seemed to fill in the middle-ground and resolve the great caliber debate: 9mm vs 45ACP, fast vs slow, single-stack vs double-stack mags, light vs heavy. It caught on quickly and like a wild fire among law enforcement and quickly became the dominant round. I can't help but think that the fact that we were under the 1994 high capacity magazine ban limiting capacity helped fuel its popularity – at least in the civilian market.

Despite this, it would take me about a decade of a proven track record to warm up to it. Let's face it – the older I got, the heavier that full size 45 felt.


What was once old is new again!

Enter 2014 and the FBI has re-adopted the 9mm (more on that in a minute) and it seems that the internet is a buzz with stories of how the 40 is either dead or dying. More recently I have even seen a trend of where very well-known firearms experts seem to go out of their way to discredit the 40S&W. Not that I necessarily disagree with their reasons or evaluations (there is a pro and con to everything), but I find the sudden upswing of anti-endorsements odd.

Just yesterday I saw a thread where a prominent competition shooter said that he (still) preferred the 40 to the shock of many on the internet. There was a bit of criticism and I was surprised to see him defending his choice and even qualifying it. Gosh folks—he can shoot whatever he likes. I will never understand why anyone cares what someone else uses.

Speaking of what is old is new - consider the possibility of another assault weapons ban. It is a common mantra of anti-gunners' "common sense" legislation. If we were limited to 10 rounds in new pistols again worse (all firearms) would your opinion change? Think that it couldn't happen? Tell me how it couldn't happen for the decade that it did. It is only because of the NRA that there was a 10 year sunset. If not for that clause we would STILL be under its limit (end political rant).


Internet declares the 40 S&W in its last days

But I digress, why do I think that the stories of the 40's death are exaggerated?

The biggest reason is that it still holds about 60% of the U.S. Law enforcement market.

That is huge – it means that there are more 40 S&W pistols in service than ALL other calibers COMBINED!

Incidentally, the most popular law enforcement pistol is the Glock 22. Glock civilian sales are completely different and the best seller in the U.S. is the model 19.


But the FBI just switched to 9mm so the 40 will die out!

Will it? I was wrong about the switch-over to 40 S&W but this time I am not seeing the massive shift to follow the FBI like we have in the past. Yes, I know that there are some, but not like before.

Seems like the FBI switches standard issue very frequently. From memory I can think of four changes: revolver to 9mm, to 10mm, to 40S&W and now back to the 9mm. I think that most departments would have a hard time justifying the cost of changing calibers so frequently, let alone BACK to one previously used. Today's political environment is also, unfortunately, much more hostile to law enforcement. I feel that there may be a public backlash to “buying the police new guns.” There would definitely be accusations of funding waste.


Abandoned FBI rounds just don't die

I also question the belief that a round will die out because the FBI no longer uses it. Historically this simply is not true. None of the rounds that the FBI used formerly have died out! The 38, 357 Magnum, 9mm, 10mm, 40S&W are definitely still popular. For literally YEARS people have been saying that the 10mm was dead. At worst, it is a boutique round even though there were new pistols from Glock this year (who already has a pretty good line of 10's), one from SIG (who has never made one previously) and an expanded line from RIA. Not too bad if you ask me. The 40S&W is even more established than the 10mm ever was.


Going down the same road as 41AE and 41Mag?

In fact, of all the rounds discussed I think that the only one that I would say is dead is the 41AE. It was never adopted by any agency and only available from a few providers – in a conversion kit, Tanfoglios and the IMI Jericho. I think ammo only came from UZI/Samson. If you think that the 40 S&W has a bit of kick or is hard on guns the 41AE was worse. I sold my Browning HiPower conversion kit long before it disappeared.

The 41 Magnum has fared a little better – It was adopted limitedly and revolvers are still made. Ammo is still available but far from common place. This is truthfully probably what a lot of people think of (hope?) for the future of the 40 S&W. But, the fact that a very powerful REVOLVER round (significantly more powerful than the 10mm) intended for law enforcement but only adopted by a few agencies (2 or 3?) still exists today is pretty remarkable. Besides Rick (Walking Dead) how many agencies even issue any revolver as a duty sidearm? Maybe some Corrections and Reserves? I think the 40 and 41 Mag comparison is not 1-to-1, but it is noteworthy.


Which is better: 9, 40, 45, 50AE? Google!

The 9mm vs 40S&W vs 45ACP vs whatever debates have been hashed to death on the internet. Way too much time and bandwidth is wasted on justifying what the “best” round is. I am not going to engage in each caliber's pros/cons – and every cartridge has BOTH. Google'g will result in a ridiculous amount of material.


Some arguments are just not worth participating/Google first!

I do feel that I have to point out a weird caliber argument that I saw yesterday. Someone called the 40S&W “Short & Weak” when compared to the 9mm. Now, when the 40S&W was introduced there were people who called it “Short & Weak” in comparison to its big brother 10mm but using the phrase in a justification of the 9mm over 40S&W is just wacky - check your cartridge dimensions first! I wish I had kept the link to that particular thread. On second thought, I am glad I didn't.


My conclusion? Somebody buy me a Wilson (in any caliber)

Carry what you want. They all work...mostly (well, they are all still just pistol rounds). As for the experts – they are not wrong and I respect their opinions (heck, I just bought a Glock 43 as a backup/deep conceal!). I am unsure of the seeming animosity towards the 40 S&W and why there feels like an anti-40 campaign. They are people too and are entitled to their opinion and to buy what they like.

But, like most police departments, I am heavily invested in 40 equipment and ammo. So, my main carry will continue to be 40S&W. Not that I don't think that there are plenty of other reasons to stick with the 40 (it works and I like the boom), but economics alone are a big reason that the 40 S&W won't be going away any time soon.


Some reading material if your bored/interested:

History of FBI hand guns -

The Forgotten M&P (41Magnum) -

Wikipedia entry for 41AE -
(I wish I had kept some of the AAL promo material on it)

FBI Handgun Wounding Factor Effectiveness -
(I know it is a bit dated now, but it is worth reading)

Army opens up possibility of adopting non-9mm -
(Not likely, but wouldn't that be funny?)


Some folks had some questions about my last post and the passage of Nevada SB175. Mainly folks wondered about what states would be added especially those that had been removed recently: Florida, Utah and Arizona.

Unfortunately, I have no idea. What makes us hopeful is that a number of those states were removed since they were not as restrictive as Nevada:

Two states will be removed from the list of recognized states. They are Utah and Florida. It was determined that these states no longer met the two step test required by Nevada law. Utah’s permit process does not require live fire training that Nevada law requires and Florida changed its permit renewal time from five years to seven years before renewal. These issues were substantially different from Nevada’s law.


But the "at least as restrictive" requirement has been stricken:

Sec. 4.5. NRS 202.3689 is hereby amended to read as follows: 202.3689 1. On or before July 1 of each year, the Department shall: (a) [Examine the requirements for the] Determine whether each state requires a person to complete any training, class or program before the issuance of a permit to carry a concealed firearm in [each] that state . [and determine whether the requirements of each state are substantially similar to or more stringent than the requirements set forth in NRS 202.3653 to 202.369, inclusive.]

How that it is going to be determined and approved by the NV police associations remains to be seen. There is no residency requirement that I saw either, so I am hopeful.

The list may be done July 1, and hopefully be approved quickly if it has not been done already.

I am expecting that it will be published here:
Notice that it was last published July 24 so it did take a few weeks to get the final list.

Knocking on wood!

Sunday, 26 October 2014 12:48

Some new stuff coming soon

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I have been getting some inquiries if I am still alive.
I am!!

I have some new things coming up shortly. I am ordering the last few parts to complete my BCM build this week, and have a couple new holsters to review:
BladeTech Eclipse for a S&W 1066 and Scorpius Tactical Defender for a Browning HiPower (I know - some different choices). The Ozarks IWB holster (Glock). I have to order it still, but also the internet famous Raven Concealment Systems (RCS) for a more common Glock.

Also, making plans for upcoming ShowSHOW 2015! It just takes $ :)


Saturday, 25 January 2014 06:10

return of the medium frame model 66* 357mag!

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I must of missed this because I boycotted the booth of a certain American revolver company with an & in the name. I do have pictures of me walking by the booth LOL.

But, I just saw that the 4" model 66* medium frame  (think Koff or Kilo)! is returning. That is awesome! The 19 has long been a favorite of mine and I wouldn't mind a stainless. It is a nice brushed matte finish.

I would post a link or a picture, however I don't want to get sued.


* possibly a registered trademark of the company that registered it as a registered trademark.

Sunday, 15 December 2013 12:10

They're here! Pair of HRA CMP M1 Garands!

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It has been about 3 months but my two M1 Garands have arrived from CMP! Only one is mine (the other is a gift for someone who deserves one). I am very excited as the M1 Garand is one of the finest weapons ever designed (as someone famous once said). The two that I ordered were H&R Service Grades. I was pleasantly surprised at the nice CMP stamped hard cases that they now come in.

My last Garand was a Springfield Service Grade. To be honest it (at least the wood) was in better shape. However, these two definitely seemed more broken in (smoother) although quite a bit more used. The foreends had a definite darker stain than normal. I am not sure if that is a CMP thing, but I like it.

Anyway, without adieu - some pics...









I was browsing the Sig website and came across the the P938. It is an oddity in the Sig line like like the P238, at least in the fact that it is a non-traditional (meaning non-1911) single-action. Notwithstanding the P210 which is in a class all in its own.

I am not sure how Sig came along this line (P238 and P938) but I am impressed. There are stories that Sig bought the rights to Colt's Mustang (and equipment) which had been discontinued for years. But, Colt recently reintroduced them so I am not sure if that is true. Although according to Colt they are building them on new CNC machinery.

Anyway, the Mustang (IMO) was an under-rated pistol. A joy to shoot and very popular at training classes with new shooters. Remarkably accurate considering the rudimentary sights. If you like small thin single-action pistols it is great. And unique. Enter the P938! A Mustang scaled up to 9mm! I like it.

It reminded me of the Star FireStar. At the time it was a maligned pistol, but it was far ahead of its time. I regret not getting one. They worked. I found this article

The P938 reminded the author of a Star PD. I think that is probably a more accurate assessment based on the lightweight frame. Another pistol way ahead of its time. Star sure built some nice pistols.

Anyway, the Sig P938 is definitely worth considering IMO if you are looking for something small without a 30# DAO trigger pull.

I am LMAO at this news article posted today. I repost it because I am sure at some point they are going to realize the ridiculousness of a kit that converts a "standard gun" into a semi-auto. Or maybe they won't fix it. They clearly don't care about their gun illiteracy or accuracy in reporting. I suspect they meant converting a 10 round magazine back into its standard capacity (more than 10).

Link to Chicago Tribune Article

SACRAMENTO, Calif., Oct 10 (Reuters) - California Governor
Jerry Brown vetoed several closely watched gun control bills on

Friday, a move that essentially rebuffs an effort by fellow
Democrats to enact a sweeping expansion of firearms regulation
in the most populous U.S. state.

Brown vetoed the strictest bill, which would have classified
any firearm with a removable magazine as an assault weapon,
calling it an "infringement on gun owners' rights." He did,
however sign some new firearms regulations, including a measure
to ban conversion kits used to convert standard guns into

(Reporting by Sharon Bernstein; Editing by Cynthia Johnston)

I am laughing, but I am also deeply saddened by how ignorant MSM and reporters are about firearms. Unfortunately, I fear that it is not limited to firearms, and they don't seem to care about accuracy in reporting.

However, in the meantime, where can I get one of those kits to convert my standard gun into a semi-auto?

Saturday, 05 October 2013 10:53

Thoughts on the Springfield XDS recall

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I have been silent on the Springfield XDS recall mainly because it is all over the internet and I have nothing new to say. In general, I find SA's support to be superb. While this may be there first recall (and learning experience) it is not their first XD problem. People have forgotten but the early XD's were plagued with striker breakage (hmm..they were not the only ones with this striker problem) and they had a policy that they would not send out replacements (you had to send the pistol in). This caused me to choose another brand of striker pistol, the S&W M&P (both registered trademarks which I am not affiliated with) which ironically also suffered striker breakage problems. However, S&W (tm) did just send me a replacement striker. SA XD's also had finish problems which led to them using the Melonite process to treat the metal. The date that this occurred is actually somewhere in a post on this blog.

None of this is to detract from Springfield Armory. I am still a huge fan, own their pistols, and find their customer service excellent. In fact, in a blog post here recently the XDS was on my potential buy list. I ended up not getting one because, well, I think they are a little spendy for what they are, and (ironically) too new. Although I haven't gotten it yet the Glock 30 won out for me. Springfield can survive this. Lots of recalls lately- S&W (tm) Shield (tm), Ruger SR9, Walther PPK, etc. Even almighty Glock has had its share of factory "upgrades." I remember sending in my Glock 21, although quite a few years ago. They all have survived.

However, this isn't to say that they handled this recall optimumly. The blog post below is from a current owner and I agree. The blog is also a neighbor :)

P.S. It is also noteworthy that SA doesn't actually make the pistol. They import them from Croatia. For some reason folks seem to not know this. They are actually made by IM Metal and were originally imported under the name of HS2000. This fact only exacerbates the complexity of coordinating a recall.

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