Sunday, January 26, 2014

Soul-searching, gringo pistolero edition

I've been a gun nut for as long as I can remember.  I always liked to look at guns, read about guns...

But, oddly, I never owned that many guns.

I mean, sure, I probably have more guns than most Americans -- which means, of course, more than 99.9% of humanity -- but compared to the people that I like to read blogs by, and participate in online fora with, I'm a piker.

And I've averaged maybe two range trips year for years.  Basically, I may have been a Gun Crank (as Elmer Kieth would put it) but really, for all practical I was a dilettante. (I hope not a Gun Store Commando!)
So, a while ago, I decided to get serious.  At least one range trip a month.  Replace all the cut-rate gear I've accumulated over the years, discard it or relegate it to the "spares, loaners, and giveaways" box.  Better holsters, better magazines, carrying a flashlight as well as a gun and reloads... I also joined in hopes of learning a thing or three about shooting.

Now, my primary interest in shooting has long been self-defense. And one of the things I picked up, articulated best by Tamara although others seem to follow the same philosophy, is that, since guns are machines, and machines are unreliable, one should have one's carry  pistol, and a spare carry pistol, and a range/training pistol, and a .22 caliber version of the carry pistol.   Plus the regular holster, the weak-hand holster (in case your strong hand is incapacitated), maybe the back-up holster.  Magazines -- when asked "How many should I have?" the traditional answer is "more."  And mark them individually somehow so that when one goes belly-up on you you can tell for sure which one it was and discard it.  (Smash it flat...)  And, of course, you need a way to carry those.

If one is really serious, one will get an inert trainer with which to practice draws from concealment. (Blue, yellow, or red, I'm not sure it matters except to the manufacturers each of whom uses a specific color.)(Depending on model of pistol, there may be a laser simulator available...)

Now, call me a traditionalist, but I've been a 1911 man for... well, ever.  I've noted before that I can't seem to get a decent grip on a Block, er, Glock.  I never cared for the Berettas the Army issued me, and I can't afford an Heckler and Koch.  Tried the S&W M&P at the local range, and was not impressed.  Sigs are OK...

...In fact, the dilemma I've arrived at is that I am wrestling with whether I should stay with the 1911 platform, probably by getting a Colt Rail Gun1 and maybe a .22 LR trainer2, or to switch to the Sig P229 or 226, probably in 9mm.  Or one of each, and a .22 version.
The biggest advantage the Sigs have would be magazine capacity, and ammunition economy.  (Assuming 9mm doesn't become as rare as .22 Long Rifle.)

(Some Many communists idiots misguided individuals will argue that 1911s are unreliable, but one thing I've learned reading the Internet is that the least reliable pistol brand in the world is a tie between Sigs, Colts, Rugers, HundKs, Springfields, Berettas, CZs, Kel-Tecs...
(Seriously, though, there is nothing inherently unreliable about the 1911 design, as long as quality materials are used and the design isn't "improved" upon.)

OTOH, Sig includes military retirees in their "Law Enforcement Sales" program.  (As do Glock and Smith & Wesson.)

At the moment, I'm leaning 1911, for reasons of familiarity, and having to replace less "stuff."  Saw a Rail Gun in a local gun shop yesterday.

But... I dunno.  Maybe I'll win the lottery and do both.

1. Why the Rail Gun?  I want a full-size 1911, and this has a Picatinney Rail for mounting a light or laser, for use as home-defense pistol.  The laser also doubles as an excellent training tool. The foremost experts on these things say that Colts are the most reliable 1911s made today. &nbspIf I go with Sigs I'll obviously opt for the railed versions.
2. Got a Ruger 22/45 with that in mind, but a Colt Ace would be closer.

1 comment:

NotClauswitz said...

I loved my Sig P220 until I picked up a Ed Brown 1911 Commander and everything clicked - I still love the Sig because the take-down is just so easy, and got a P245 for carry as an inexpensive alternate to the Commander. Carry class and paperwork in two weeks...