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The Hobbit Hole XXXVIII - There and Back Again!

Posted on 09/23/2009 6:19:16 AM PDT by HairOfTheDog

Welcome to The Hobbit Hole!



TOPICS: The Hobbit Hole
KEYWORDS: corinnumber1; firstkeyword; jrgotanewjob; secondprecious
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To: Ramius

Whoops.


3,801 posted on 04/09/2012 7:55:13 PM PDT by Ramius (Personally, I give us one chance in three. More tea anyone?)
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To: Ramius; g'nad; osagebowman; Lost Dutchman; Squantos; Corin Stormhands; JenB; TalonDJ; ExGeeEye; ...
Well, OB proved quite prescient, as this episode of Saturday Night Gun Pron attests. My EBR store got in six Ruger 10/22 takedowns late yesterday, and put one in the rack today. On a hunch, I showed up ten minutes before closing time, saw it in the rack, and flung plastic at them.

It comes already taken-down inside the custom nylon carry case. The case is nice, but I would have preferred a bit heavier fabric, and a bit more padding. Two outside pockets, one with PALS loops, with sleeves for two barrels (only the one that comes with the rifle available now), and another for the stock and receiver.

Of course, the big news is how the rifle takes down, shown here in pieces next to its "big brother".

Before I forget, that's the new Nikon 3-9x40 BDC scope on the Ruger target model. There was a $50 rebate on it, and I didn't want to spend more for the scope than the rifle itself, in this case. Even one that is proving itself to be amazingly accurate.

Here's the close-up of the Ruger's takedown system. Lock back the bolt, push forward the latch in the bottom of the forend, and twist 45 degrees clockwise.

The one thing that leaves me uneasy is the heat-coloring on the barrel stub that locks into the receiver. It indicates that the machine feeds-and-speeds were so fast the stainless steel was starting to "color". That should be a no-no, and my dad would have a cow if he saw something like that. I didn't see it until I got home, because I was in such a rush I never even opened the box while in the store. I'll check out their display rifle, if it's still there the next time I go. I expect it's all okay, but it just ain't cool in my book.

When everything is put back together, there's still a lot of open spaces. This rifle was designed for mass production, and not the precise hand-fitting needed for "old school" takedowns.

After the two halves are joined, the bolt is slammed forward a few times to make sure everything is seated, and then the knurled wheel is turned to make everything as tight as possible. Since there is no detent system, I suspect firing stresses will begin to loosen the wheel, requiring an occasional retightening. Compared to the target rifle, the takedown has about as much structural stiffness as soggy pasta.

Still, I put on an aftermarket bolt release, so I don't have to suffer through Ruger's version of how one should work. Purchases include an extended target-grade bolt handle and rail, a front barrel band with short pieces of Picatinny rail on it, and an aftermarket front and receiver-sight styled like the M16 iron sights. That little leaf sight just won't work for me, although I'll probably take it to the range before it arrives.

I'll at least learn how fussy an eater is compared to Big Brother. I'm sure there's one combination that will do best, but then again, there might not be a big spread in accuracy between known ammo specs. I might even temporarily put the Weaver rails on, and steal the same scope I used initially for Big Brother. That will give Little Bro a chance to do its best.

Because this is intended to remain a takedown rifle, there isn't any room for a big scope, or even a red dot. Except for the tiny Docter and clones, all of which cost more than the rifle, and none of which have a mount, yet, for the Ruger 10/22.

As my purchase was being completed, the store owner told me that they had already sold two of the rifles today. So I wasn't going to walk out the door without one. I don't think there will be any deep discounts until these models have a decent production run to keep them from being rarities. But I sure won't hold my breath until Ruger comes up with threaded barrels for this rifle, or their SR22 pistol.

3,802 posted on 04/15/2012 1:09:15 AM PDT by 300winmag (Overkill Never Fails)
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To: 300winmag

Kudos Win-Mag: first on your block, I reckon. Glad you got yours, we know you’ll give it a thorough going over and testing regimine.

Yep, I did give it a good going over, wavered, sighed and put it back. Doubtless their one remaining one was gone by Payday Friday.

According to the scribes the big pouch is to hold the Ruger .22 BX (I think it’s BX) 25 shot magazines. The smaller pouch, the SR-22 Pistol.

Some of the posters on the various hook and bullet forums are already noting the limited scope space (apparently the smaller scopes say 1-4.5V types can work) the lack of a removable buttplate is causing some wailing and weeping as it is a primo space for storage. Won’t be long before those mods hit the intern-net.

There isn’t a nub for a sling swivel and no apparent provision for attachment. That’s an oversight that will hopefully be corrected in phase II production. Since the SR-22 pistol is being tweaked already, (again, according to those who claim to know), perhaps the removable buttplate and swivel nub will follow.

I’ll be looking forward to your future posts on testing the Ruger take-down; I’m not expecting MOA accuracy given it’s takedown features but minute-of-squirrels head should be achievable.

One poster on a H&B forum put three .22 bannana magazines in the big pouch, his SR-22 pistol in the small one, and tubes of loose .22 rounds in the barrel sleeves. Nice grab and go package.

As usual Ruger did a lot of things right and doubtless one will find its way home with me eventually. Of course, one has to ask, why the heck did it take so long for them to do it?.

OB


3,803 posted on 04/15/2012 1:16:10 PM PDT by osagebowman
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To: osagebowman
There isn’t a nub for a sling swivel and no apparent provision for attachment. That’s an oversight that will hopefully be corrected in phase II production.

The aftermarket barrel band, with three pieces of rail, should handle any foreseeable needs for sling, bipod, or light mounts. I'm leaning towards a swivel stub on a wood screw base either through the eagle on the grip cap, or toe of the stock. I suspect there's enough material in either location for it to work.

There's a vast difference between the laid-up Kevlar on the B&C target stock, and the injection molded polystyrene on the takedown. I don't know if aftermarket stock makers can bring in a product that isn't too expensive for the specialized needs of this rifle.

I also wonder how long it will take for it to appear all pimped-out as some sort of super weapon in a movie or TV show. Sean Connery gave the AR-7 takedown .22 a big role in "From Russia with Love". I don't know if wounding the guy who drops the live grenade would classify as an "aircraft kill" as far as downing the helicopter goes.

3,804 posted on 04/15/2012 1:43:46 PM PDT by 300winmag (Overkill Never Fails)
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To: osagebowman
There isn’t a nub for a sling swivel and no apparent provision for attachment. That’s an oversight that will hopefully be corrected in phase II production.

My rapid prototyping has already taken care of a rear sling swivel stub. It was fairly simple to remove the grip cap medallion from the stock. I carefully ran a scalpel around the edge, and noted that the blade went in deeper, and hit something solid, part of the way, and went in less, and hit something mushy, in other areas.

Bless their cheap little hearts, but the Ruger beancounters decreed only a bit of glue be used. I cut through the mushy areas as best as I could with the scalpel. The a quick pry with a thin-blade screwdriver, and it popped off without fuss. Ten minutes to study the problem, ten minutes to find the tools, and two minutes of work.

I found a QD swivel stud with a 10-24 thread, and determined that the top of the "R" was as close to absolute center as I was going to get. A #10 drill, washer and lock washer, and nut, and everything was snugged up to the grip cap.

With a more generous application of glue this time, here's the final results. A flat plastic plate inside the pistol grip opening wouldn't stick out as much, but this gets the job done. I didn't want to tackle the toe of the stock, even though it appears to be solid plastic for the last half-inch of the stock. I wood screw stud might work, but the grip cap medallion was quicker and slicker.

And, I decided to give Little Bro a sporting chance, and temporarily installed the Trijicon ACOG for accuracy testing, even though the scope probably is worth at least three times more than the entire rifle.

So now I can test with my "calibrated" ammo to see what, if anything, Little Bro likes best, before I switch back to iron sights.

3,805 posted on 04/16/2012 1:41:07 AM PDT by 300winmag (Overkill Never Fails)
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To: 300winmag

Evening Win-Mag : well, it sure didn’t take you long to solve that annoying factory oversight. Well Done. Very ingenious, would not have thought to drill the Ruger “R” in the pistol grip cap. You are slowly but surely removing my reticience to get ahold of these little guys. The range testing may seal the deal.


3,806 posted on 04/16/2012 4:31:51 PM PDT by osagebowman
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To: osagebowman
You are slowly but surely removing my reticience to get ahold of these little guys. The range testing may seal the deal.

One caveat: I should not have trusted the new-fangled "child friendly" grape-scented plastic glue. It didn't hold at all, so I bought some Locktite "super glue 2" (cyanocrylate) with plastic primer, and glued the grip cap in properly.

Now, I seem to remember something about a federal "war on plastic glue" many years ago. So be sure you have the proper plastic glue for jobs like this.

3,807 posted on 04/16/2012 9:00:58 PM PDT by 300winmag (Overkill Never Fails)
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To: osagebowman; Ramius; Squantos
Well, it happened again. I went to the range for a bit more testing with Little Bro, and there in the used-gun case, one of my "Grail Guns" that I've lusted after since the day S&W announced it. In fact, I think this is the only one I've ever seen in real life.

Of course, I succumbed to temptation. I've learned my lesson.

They put it in the case that morning, had a couple of guys look at it, so I knew what had to be done. After a good going-over and Nanolube, one box of ammo, and then it takes an honored place as a safe queen.

3,808 posted on 04/20/2012 12:44:33 AM PDT by 300winmag (Overkill Never Fails)
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To: 300winmag
I hope you will be haunted by the collective Jealousy of your fellow Freepers. /s

That is a beauty. I have a Model 29 that I might have to take to my Grave. If it's possible to love a gun, well...

3,809 posted on 04/20/2012 12:57:54 AM PDT by Kickass Conservative (A day without Obama is like a day without a Tsunami.)
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To: Kickass Conservative
I hope you will be haunted by the collective Jealousy of your fellow Freepers. /s

Thank you, I'll take that as a compliment. And welcome to what we do to kill time at The Hobbit Hole between major events. I learned my lesson a few months ago, when I let a Colt Anaconda get away because I figured it could wait until I came back in a couple of days.

Tell us a bit more about yourself, it's always nice to see new faces. Would you like to be put on the gun pron ping list?

3,810 posted on 04/20/2012 1:28:59 AM PDT by 300winmag (Overkill Never Fails)
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To: 300winmag

Nicely done. I picked up a nice condition— but nothing special— 10/22 with a bull barrel a while back, and you’re giving me some great ideas for what to do with it.

Roger on the model 66. I feel the same way about a Python I let slip away. Now I seem to need one. :-)


3,811 posted on 04/20/2012 4:29:13 AM PDT by Ramius (Personally, I give us one chance in three. More tea anyone?)
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To: Kickass Conservative

Welcome to the Hobbit Hole. Would you like to be added to the Great Roll of the Shire (Hobbity pings, and occasional other items deemed ping-worthy by the Mathom-Keeper, very low volume)?


3,812 posted on 04/20/2012 6:22:44 AM PDT by ExGeeEye (Islam: a transnational fascist government that demands worship.)
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To: 300winmag; Tijeras_Slim

Cool find 300 !!! Very nice condition too ...

I’m still searching for a “””new””” or near new Schmidt & Vesson Model 13 with a three inch barrel with round butt grips.

Old FiBi issue.... had one , let it go in a trade and regret it every day.


3,813 posted on 04/20/2012 6:58:54 AM PDT by Squantos (Be polite. Be professional. But have a plan to kill everyone you meet)
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To: 300winmag
After a good going-over and Nanolube, one ten box(es) of ammo, and then it takes an honored place as a safe queen.

Fixed it for you. :-)

Seriesly Win-Mag you'll find that is a great shootin' old wheel gun. A Tyler T adapter or a set of Pacs will make it a lot easier on the old hand. Kudos on snagging a fine example of Messers Smith and Wesson handiwork. They truly don't build 'em like that any more.

3,814 posted on 04/20/2012 11:20:16 AM PDT by osagebowman
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To: Kickass Conservative

Welcome to Hobbit-Hole Kickass Conservative. Pull up a stump and visit whenever you pass this way.


3,815 posted on 04/20/2012 11:22:11 AM PDT by osagebowman
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To: osagebowman
Seriesly Win-Mag you'll find that is a great shootin' old wheel gun. A Tyler T adapter or a set of Pacs will make it a lot easier on the old hand.

It came with a set, already. I'm still going to give it a good tune-up before firing it.

I'm actually more of a traditionalist when it comes to revolvers. They should be made of high-carbon or stainless steel, with five shots for the J-frame, and six for everything else in the S&W lineup. Everything else is unnatural, IMHO. The only exception is the S&W BG38, which is its own unique, clean-sheet-of-paper, design.

The Model 66 has seen duty as a holster weapon, and has marks on the finish from at least two different types of aftermarket grips. One reason I love stainless steel is that I can "touch it up" with a fine plastic scouring pad. Where a blued finish gets thin, stainless just gets polished.

One thing I don't like about stainless is its tendency to gall, but that's one of the things I use Nanolube for. It's played a crucial role in my Ruger 10/22 and 22/45 work, along with my M-faux projects. As far as my motor skills go, I'm a klutz. But penetrating oil with nanometer diamonds suspended in it lets me fit and hone parts almost to the microscopic level.

3,816 posted on 04/21/2012 1:04:47 AM PDT by 300winmag (Overkill Never Fails)
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To: osagebowman
Seriesly Win-Mag you'll find that is a great shootin' old wheel gun. A Tyler T adapter or a set of Pacs will make it a lot easier on the old hand.

It came with a set, already. I'm still going to give it a good tune-up before firing it.

I'm actually more of a traditionalist when it comes to revolvers. They should be made of high-carbon or stainless steel, with five shots for the J-frame, and six for everything else in the S&W lineup. Everything else is unnatural, IMHO. The only exception is the S&W BG38, which is its own unique, clean-sheet-of-paper, design.

The Model 66 has seen duty as a holster weapon, and has marks on the finish from at least two different types of aftermarket grips. One reason I love stainless steel is that I can "touch it up" with a fine plastic scouring pad. Where a blued finish gets thin, stainless just gets polished.

One thing I don't like about stainless is its tendency to gall, but that's one of the things I use Nanolube for. It's played a crucial role in my Ruger 10/22 and 22/45 work, along with my M-faux projects. As far as my motor skills go, I'm a klutz. But penetrating oil with nanometer diamonds suspended in it lets me fit and hone parts almost to the microscopic level.

3,817 posted on 04/21/2012 1:21:58 AM PDT by 300winmag (Overkill Never Fails)
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To: osagebowman
Still tuning my "new" S&W Model 66 before taking it to the range. I think it probably has a couple thousand rounds put through it. It also had at least one catastrophic ammo failure, like a pierced primer or case failure, because there were blast marks in the area of the firing pin channel that could only be scraped off with a dental pick. "Had a blast, but made to last".

I'm pretty much done with the Ruger 10/22 takedown. It pretty much shoots the same, match-grade ammo or cats-and-dogs. A scope doesn't make much of a difference as far as group size goes, either. But it's now configured as a plinker with a Williams receiver sight (my eyes thank me), and can keep almost all the rounds in a scattered ten-shot group inside the ten ring at 25 yards.

The Ruger 10/22 target model will get a slight reprieve from ammo testing as I do a bit of experimenting with my CZ453 to see what it likes in ammo, and if it's as finicky a feeder as the Ruger. One combination of both Federal Champion and Ely Match produce outstanding results, while a variation of .00005" off of that produces ho-hum results.

This is the best group I've fired to date, even with the two "flyers". Ten shots, 25 yards, Ely Match sorted into .0385" rim thickness. I have not yet sized the Ely ammo because the bullets are coated with a thick lube, and I didn't want to disturb it. Sorting by rim thickness doesn't physically resize anything.

That .437" group comes at about 4x the cost of Federal ammo, but at least it produced one brag-able group so far. I roughly estimate that the Ely is about 2x more consistent than the Federal ammo. You gets what you pays for, if you're lucky.

3,818 posted on 04/26/2012 8:18:03 PM PDT by 300winmag (Overkill Never Fails)
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To: 300winmag

Morning Win Mag - So the high priced ones do shoot better on average but at 4X cost it’s a no-brainer for informal shooting. IF I was a better shot I’d go for what won the day but keeping them on the two inch sticker at 25 yards is about my limit off hand. Kudos to small groups, flyers can be annoying. Which reminds me, buy more ammo and head to the range.


3,819 posted on 04/28/2012 6:27:12 AM PDT by osagebowman
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To: 300winmag

And a ps - did you get the peep sight from Brownell’s?


3,820 posted on 04/28/2012 7:57:42 AM PDT by osagebowman
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To: osagebowman
And a ps - did you get the peep sight from Brownell’s?

Yes I did, it's on the Ruger TD in the picture above. And it's being replaced by a different brand of peep sight. I could not keep the tiny locking screw tight enough to keep the sight from sliding down the track under recoil. I'm getting one of those M1 carbine "clone" sights used to turn a 10/22 into something that looks like a M1 carbine. It has two apertures, and nothing to slide under recoil. Not that recoil is that brutal on a .22.

I also have some "product improvement" to try on the new Ruger 25-round magazine. Sometimes I feel like I'm an unpaid Ruger beta tester.

But that won't stop me from getting 10/22 Number Three, which will be used for a yet-to-be-announced project.

3,821 posted on 04/28/2012 9:05:55 AM PDT by 300winmag (Overkill Never Fails)
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To: Ramius; g'nad; osagebowman; Lost Dutchman; Squantos; Corin Stormhands; JenB; TalonDJ; ExGeeEye; ...
This is a late, late Saturday Night Gun Pron, even by my lax standards. Let's just say the Ruger 10/22 bug bit again, especially now that I have the secret tools to make these things a bit easier to work on/with. I can't say much yet, but the top rifle won't look much like it does now when the project is finished.

While I'm waiting for lots and lots of parts, I'll be doing some initial accuracy testing with my ACOG.

I also have a theory about Ruger and the rest of the firearms industry I'd like to try out on folks here later in the day.

3,822 posted on 04/29/2012 2:21:24 AM PDT by 300winmag (Overkill Never Fails)
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To: Ramius; g'nad; osagebowman; Lost Dutchman; Squantos; Corin Stormhands; JenB; TalonDJ; ExGeeEye; ...
Today my local EBR store is closed while they switch over to a new computer system. In lieu of a prayer, I'm offering a quick article for the Saturday Night Gun Pron.

As promised earlier, here's a little trick I use to "refinish" ("touch-up" would be a more accurate term) stainless steel firearms. First, a couple of examples of how stainless steel is finished, or re-finished.

The S&W Model 60 has the standard brush finish, while the Ruger Redhawk has a custom bead-blasted finish. Bead-blasting is done the same as sand-blasting, except fine glass particles are used instead of a more aggressive abrasive. Not shown is a "mirror polish", which is done with powered cloth wheels loaded with grease bearing some abrasive powder like iron, tin, or aluminum oxide.

The factory "brush finish" is done, mostly by hand, using soft wire buffing wheels made of fine brass or aluminum bristles. These powered wheels can not only be very aggressive if you lack the proper touch, they could also launch your workpiece into undesired trajectories.

Aware of all those shortcomings, I hit on using ordinary plastic kitchen scouring pad to slowly perform the "brushing" function.

This pad may be tough on baked-on food, but it's quite mild on stainless steel. So you'll have to use a lot of elbow grease (and risk reactivating my carpal tunnel syndrome in my case), but you can't get into trouble in just an instant. It's taking me several hours to renew a good-looking brushed finish in areas where wear from a leather holster has polished the stainless steel bright, but it will get done. There is also a coarser 3M maroon plastic pad in the automotive department, used to scuff up painted surfaces so new paint will adhere. It might speed up my job a bit, so maybe I'll get one for $4.

And I finally got the .40S&W barrel for my Glock 33. While .357Sig can be pricey and hard to find at times, .40S&W is almost as common as dirt, if not exactly cheap. This way, a quick barrel switch lets me use either kind. Oddly, Glock magazines in .357 and .40 have tiny differences in areas around the feed lips, but the ammo couldn't tell the difference. But Glock keeps coming out with different engineering changes on magazine followers without bothering to explain to customers what it means, either.

The Glock Model 33 will soon be my full-time carry piece, so I took both barrels to the range just to verify how well things work. Bar-Sto works some kind of magic with barrels for Glocks and the Sig P229, with little of no fitting involved. I'm still working on getting the fir right for my Sip P239.

Don't read too much into the target results, but I finally remembered proper Glock trigger control when I was shooting the .357. Overall, the barrels, and my skills, are about equal for both calibers. Works for all social interactions I can foresee.

Next week, I hope to have initial results with Ruger #3.

3,823 posted on 04/29/2012 11:43:24 PM PDT by 300winmag (Overkill Never Fails)
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To: 300winmag

Afternoon Win-Mag; well, a trio of 10-22s nicely done. Laminated stock combines stability of synthetic and wood feel.

The Scotch Brite is right handy to keep on the work bench. I’ve used it for lots of chores. Me and power tools for tasks like this, well, that’s why I like hand powered stuff.

The .357 Sig is right pricey all right, great cartridge though. I understand that it is a truly trying endeavor for reloaders. How about recoil - .357 Sig vs .40 S&W?


3,824 posted on 05/01/2012 2:08:17 PM PDT by osagebowman
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To: osagebowman
How about recoil - .357 Sig vs .40 S&W?

The .357Sig has a bit less recoil due to lighter bullets. The .40S&W seems to have the best performance with heavier loads, with 180gr being the preferred bullet weight for LE use. Sig went in the opposite direction with the .357, because the higher velocity can make good use of lighter bullets. In fact, 125gr is about the maximum weight of commercial loads, while I'll be using Fiocchi 100gr frangibles.

I've also made progress on the painful "smack" my hand feels with heavy loads in light handguns. I now realize what I'm feeling on the back of my fingers is the slide coming to an instantaneous dead stop as the last step in the functioning process. Putting on some Packy grip covers eliminated almost all of that pain, except for the tiny bit resting against the bottom of the trigger guard, where the cushion didn't reach. I'm trying out another brand of softer, squishier, thinner material.

3,825 posted on 05/01/2012 3:35:57 PM PDT by 300winmag (Overkill Never Fails)
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To: osagebowman
Afternoon Win-Mag; well, a trio of 10-22s nicely done. Laminated stock combines stability of synthetic and wood feel.

The laminated stock is nicely done, but it just didn't have the shape I was looking for. That's why I got the B&C synthetic stock for Middle Bro, because I felt it worked better for supported shooting using sandbags or a bipod. The original stock had too much drop at the comb, and the pistol grip wasn't optimized for scope use.

So, I bought another aftermarket stock ($150 this time, not $200) and decided to go for accuracy and bling.

Yes, that's a ProMag Marauder stock with the Ruger inside it. It's not a bad likeliness of a H&K G36, but I had an extra incentive to give it a try because of my stash of genuine G36 parts.

The new carry handle has a Hensholdt 1.5x BDC scope, with a fiber optic/battery red dot sight on top of it. Not your average tricked-out Ruger 10/22. The magazine is a 25-round banana mag with a removable cosmetic cover. I may buy a couple more just to keep up appearances. If I can find any advantage, I might replace the faux forend and stock with the real things.

I read a lot of reader reviews on the stock. While it may look like a simple drop-in (and the mechanical aspect is simple), everything fits so closely, at least with my setup, that it took me eight hours of finicky work to bolt things together for the first time for this picture. Tomorrow I'll work on enlarging certain tolerances for quick takedown and reassembly, just like a regular Ruger has. Just like with the real G36, this gadget really depends on push-pins and screws to hold things together, and not micro tolerances.

I don't know why, but this project looks more tacticool than Ruger's factory "tactical" 10/22.

3,826 posted on 05/02/2012 12:36:32 AM PDT by 300winmag (Overkill Never Fails)
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To: 300winmag

Morning Win Mag - nope it’s not your Barracuda stocked 12-40V scoped etc. tricked it out 10-22. Nice job on the conversion, guess I gotta get out more, didn’t know abou that kit. Hope there is a range report in the offing. OB


3,827 posted on 05/03/2012 5:45:34 AM PDT by osagebowman
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To: Ramius; g'nad; osagebowman; Lost Dutchman; Squantos; Corin Stormhands; JenB; TalonDJ; ExGeeEye; ...
This is a Saturday Night Gun Pron interim report. With so many projects being juggled, I thought I'd mention a couple of small items before I dropped something.

First, the S&W M66 snubbie is completely overhauled and test fired. As I was working in the components with my trusty Nanolube, I noticed that the machine work was the finest I had ever seen on a Smith & Wesson, except maybe for the "golden years" between the two world wars. The revolver would have been perfectly functional with cruder machine work ("crude" is a relative term here), but this was the equivalent of a Swiss watch movement inside.

The picture just doesn't do justice to the brushed, polished, or machined surfaces. After almost forty years, and probably a minimum of a thousand rounds fired, there was barely a trace of wear or drag on any part, indicating meticulous fitting. My Nanolube treatment was just a bit of gilding the lily. From a standpoint of craftsmanship, this is about as perfect as a revolver intended for mere mortals can get.

The same could not be said about the springs, unfortunately. The smaller springs were starting to rust, and had taken a "set" in their compressed state, meaning they did not return to their original length, and had almost no spring power left. I haven't seen this in my other older Smiths, but I bought a bunch of replacements for all the coil springs used in this revolver. Fortunately, these springs are common to about 99% of all 20th century S&W revolvers, so I have a supply of spares, if needed.

With that little problem out of the way, I went to the range with a box of 110gr Fiocchi +P .38s, intent on testing the gun, and not my skills. There were no surprises, either way.

I had to think hard for the proper description of how the revolver functioned (all factory standard spring rates, except for the trigger return spring changed from 17 to 13 pounds), and the best I could come up with was, "like melted butter flowing down a stack of hot pancakes". My shooting skills don't do it justice, but the 9-pound "long" trigger pull registered by my Lyman digital trigger gauge did. If this snubbie was a cat, it would purr if you just picked it up.

I'm sure something from the S&W Custom Shop could exceed this, but St Barbara must have had a good reason to smile on the S&W plant while this weapon was moving down the assembly line. I wonder where its littermates are?

Aside from that, my Ruger 10/22/G36 project plods along, mainly because it's taking a phenomenal amount of handwork to fit the action like it would in a normal factory, or aftermarket stock, would work. But after about 50 hours of work, I can seat the action in the stock with just a couple ounces of hand pressure, rather than beating it to death with my rubber no-bounce hammer. Once I have achieved zero-force assembly, which the stock stocks have, all I have left is some cosmetic fitting. There is a vey long technical story behind this, better suited for another day, or year. I can see why so many other owners whine about this. If it wasn't for my limitless patience (courtesy of working the help desk), and my determination not to let a piece of plastic beat me, I'd have some other stock on it by now, and be well on my way towards accuracy testing.

But my "new" revolver reminds me why I do this stuff. The project just about "fell together" all by itself, except for the spring business, which I'm glad I caught.

3,828 posted on 05/20/2012 1:37:49 AM PDT by 300winmag (Overkill Never Fails)
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To: 300winmag

Evening Win Mag - 50 hours of sanding on the stock; hmm, one thinks this is the ‘some minor fitting may be required’. I doubt 99 out of 100 owners would bother, makes your effort exemplary.

I’ve considered the SW 66 among the best revolvers made for duty use for some years. Glad you’re restoring it, good catch on the springs. Try it with some 158 grain SWC loads at the range next time. They are a sweet combination with a K-Frame.


3,829 posted on 05/21/2012 3:23:56 PM PDT by osagebowman
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To: osagebowman
Well, it happened again. With the purest of intentions, I went to the range today with my CZ 453 to test out various combinations of Federal match ammo, now that I have a large enough stock to try 50 or 100 rounds of various bullet diameters and rim sizes. The CZ put on an astounding performance, but that's a story for later.

As with the S&W Model 66 snubbie, another handgun was waiting to ambush my emotional propensity for old, odd, rare, beautiful, or ugly weapons. This time, it was an unfired H&K VP70Z.

The previous owner was obviously a collector, because he had four used, but still in good shape, extra mags, along with the two that came with it from the factory.

Originally developed as a police weapon, the non-American versions could be had with a detachable shoulder stock/holster, and three-round burst. Nothing that exotic here, but it's the immediate ancestor of the P7 family, except for being straight blowback rather than gas-retarded.

I also came up with a new excuse for buying it. "I'll hate myself for the rest of the day for spending the money, but I'll hate myself for the rest of my life if I let it get away". "Rationalizations 'R Us", original lame excuses custom crafted for a small fee.

3,830 posted on 05/23/2012 11:36:23 PM PDT by 300winmag (Overkill Never Fails)
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To: 300winmag

Kudos Win-Mag; that’s a real nice find. Haven’t seen one recently and IIRC, they were never all that common. To find an unfired example, wow. I would think the mags are sky-high themselves. I admit I had to do some research on it; didn’t realize it was made for almost 20 years, commencing in 1970. You did good, real good. Normally I ask when the range report will be posted, guess that one might just qualify as safe queen. I concur on the rationalization, done it myself, more than once. OB


3,831 posted on 05/24/2012 3:48:39 PM PDT by osagebowman
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To: osagebowman
Normally I ask when the range report will be posted, guess that one might just qualify as safe queen.

Even my "safe queens" have earned their stripes on the firing line, even if it's just one box of ammo. I suppose if it was gold-inlaid, fully-engraved, and custom-made, I might skip even working the action. But every one of them is capable of answering the call to duty, to the best of its ability.

After I get out my postage scale so I can measure the trigger pull (something conveniently omitted from their specs), I'll work all the pristine contact surfaces with Nanolube, and put in a one-pound-lighter trigger spring, the only item available from Wolff.

Spare parts are mostly non-existent, at least on Numrich. Magazines, if available, are about $75. I might try to assemble a set of surplus small springs.

And the range report will include a shoot-off between "daddy" VP70, and "son" P7.

3,832 posted on 05/24/2012 5:53:01 PM PDT by 300winmag (Overkill Never Fails)
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To: Ramius; g'nad; osagebowman; Lost Dutchman; Squantos; Corin Stormhands; JenB; TalonDJ; ExGeeEye; ...
Tonight's Saturday Night Gun Pron is a vey short range report comparing the H&K VP70Z with its direct descendent, the P7PSP. I loaded two 18-round magazines for the VP70, the first for familiarization firing, the second for comparison to the P7. The ammo was standard NATO 124gr ball, the first stuff I found when I looked in the ammo closet. Here are the results.

At seven yards, 13 of 18 rounds made it to the paper with the VP70. The P7 went 16-for-16, although I could have done a better job. I forgot I had optimized the P7's spring rate for 100gr defense loads, so it kicked more, and I had to make some minor adjustments in my shooting stance for the second magazine. When by brain functions properly, the P7 can keep all the rounds in the black, even with my meager skills.

The VP70 was just a truck with bad springs. I could get used to the 20-pound trigger pull, which was fairly consistent. But the trigger finger also cocks that hugh recoil spring, which is of unknown, but heavy, power.

Being a straight blowback, too, the VP70 provides a real slap to the hand in both directions that heavy slide moves. The grip-cocking mechanism and retarded blowback of the P7 makes for a much more pleasant shooting experience, until the gas cylinder just above your trigger finger gets too hot to tolerate after about four magazines of rapid fire. The VP70 could probably fire around the clock with no problems, buy my hand said "uncle" after 36 rounds.

The clear winner, and my favorite 9mm handgun, is the H&K P7. But the VP70 is an interesting piece, and an evolutionary example of something H&K almost got right. Still happy to have it in the collection.

3,833 posted on 05/26/2012 11:24:40 PM PDT by 300winmag (Overkill Never Fails)
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To: 300winmag

Only conversation I ever had with Col Jeff Cooper was over a P7 one of my troops brought to gunsite long ago.

He called the P7 a stapler ever time he saw one. As to its operation I just don’t like the squeeze cocker based only on my own inability to engage the damn thing as fast as I could a 1911 or Browning high power . Only Hk handgun I carried for a long time was a P9S in .45.

Loved that Hk !

Good reading as usual. Thanks.

Stay safe


3,834 posted on 05/27/2012 5:15:29 AM PDT by Squantos (Be polite. Be professional. But have a plan to kill everyone you meet)
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To: 300winmag

Very interesting as always, Mister Mag. :-)


3,835 posted on 05/27/2012 5:38:00 PM PDT by Ramius (Personally, I give us one chance in three. More tea anyone?)
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To: 300winmag

Excellent range report - Win Mag. 20 lb trigger, straight blow back, still it was made for nearly 20 years. HK P7 is one that I really want to shoot; just to see how it feels. I think 1 mag would have convinced me the earlier gun needed some more time on the drawing board. Very glad you made the test for the rest of us.


3,836 posted on 05/27/2012 6:43:27 PM PDT by osagebowman
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To: osagebowman
Very glad you made the test for the rest of us.

I really didn't have any doubts about the VP70. It's sort of an evolutionary side-track, but it made it into movies where something futuristic or sinister was needed, something H&K seems to specialize in. It made a couple of appearances in "Aliens", for one.

Now that I have a decent stock of "optimized" Federal .22s, I took the CZ453 to the range last week for another quick test. While the Ruger 10/22 target model showed a marked preference for only one "flavor", the CZ had better "table manners", and did well with just about everything, although a couple sizes worked better than others.

The .499" group with .0420" rim thickness beats the best of what the Ruger has done so far, although much more research needs to be done. One convenient feature is that the Ruger seems to like the .0415" rim thickness, while this CZ likes the more common .0420" rims. In both rifles, bullets resized to .222" are the obvious best choice. I'm expecting similar results when I get around to testing other rifles.

My big task for this particular rifle is to continue checking out a couple of different rim thicknesses, and see how consistent the results are. More shooting, and more statistics to ponder.

I also have to remind myself not to use the factory single-set trigger in the "set" mode. I had completely forgotten about it until the last couple of strings, and then I realized it was causing me more trouble than it's worth. In "normal" mode, there's a slight but very crisp pause before starting the "for real" part of the pull. Three pounds of expected pull beats 3 ounces of "surprise" while you're settling in on that bullseye.

3,837 posted on 05/27/2012 10:02:46 PM PDT by 300winmag (Overkill Never Fails)
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To: 300winmag; 2Jedismom; Bear_in_RoseBear; Corin Stormhands; ecurbh; ExGeeEye; g'nad; HairOfTheDog; ...
Well, I'm back.

Most of you will remember that my mom passed last September. MrsEx, my sister and I were supposed to meet up at the old homestead this week to begin splitting out, and prepping for transport, the various stuff that remains there. My sister was unable to come, but MrsEx and I managed to get five boxes of mostly books and personal items packed up and placed conveniently for later movement. Doesn't sound like much, but I'm actually quite pleased with the progress. If I had a place here to put it, I could bring most of what I intend to keep in two minivans and a couple of trailers. Oddly, that's almost exactly what I plan to use when the time comes.

We were going to stay until Saturday but decided there was nothing to do but waste time under sub-optimal weather. Had the weather been more cooperative we might have stayed to enjoy the beach etc.

The ol' Hobbit Hole seems strangely silent-- a faint tap tom, tom tap faintly sounds from the Moria-like gunsmithy...

3,838 posted on 05/31/2012 3:38:26 PM PDT by ExGeeEye (Romney sucks. Mutiny now, or something.)
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To: ExGeeEye

Welcome Back, EGE -

Your observation is true enough, Win Mag has done well in his role as ‘flame keeper’. Were it not for him, I fear that darkness would fallen on the Hobbit Hole. For his efforts, he is to commended.


3,839 posted on 06/01/2012 10:57:24 AM PDT by osagebowman
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To: osagebowman

Roger that... Got to keep the hearth fire lighted. After all... We have The Hobbit movie coming soon. Gotta keep the place all warm for new visitors.


3,840 posted on 06/01/2012 8:01:47 PM PDT by Ramius (Personally, I give us one chance in three. More tea anyone?)
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To: osagebowman

Roger that... Got to keep the hearth fire lighted. After all... We have The Hobbit movie coming soon. Gotta keep the place all warm for new visitors.


3,841 posted on 06/01/2012 8:01:50 PM PDT by Ramius (Personally, I give us one chance in three. More tea anyone?)
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To: Ramius

Whoops.


3,842 posted on 06/01/2012 8:02:25 PM PDT by Ramius (Personally, I give us one chance in three. More tea anyone?)
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To: ExGeeEye; Ramius; osagebowman
The ol' Hobbit Hole seems strangely silent-- a faint tap tom, tom tap faintly sounds from the Moria-like gunsmithy...

That's mostly because all the dwarves are out chasing elf women, so the Hobbit Hole is in the summer-before-the-big-movie mode. Put out a "free beer" sign, and we'll be up to our waists in dwarves. :)

Meanwhile, I have an outlet to spread the word to anyone interested in my geekery and gadgets. Gandalf was a master of fireworks, done strictly for the enjoyment of his fans, and himself. I'm no Gandalf, but I get a lot of enjoyment tinkering with these items, and trying to tempt others that it's good clean fun, even if they never need to pot an orc or zombie.

Strangely enough, while I'm working on a project, two or three more project ideas pop into my head without invitation. I wish my writing could come that easily.

As an example, this followed me home today. I have another project in my to-do stack, and this little-known classic will fit in perfectly.

A third-generation S&W .45, but the seldom-seen "slick slide" configuration. It's a combination of a redesigned M1911 with a S&W Model 39/59 SA/DA slide and trigger action.

However, the model 4586 uses a partially-tensioned trigger/hammer, much like Glock uses a partially-tensioned striker as the safety. A small stub hammer is partially visible when there's a round in the chamber. The weapon is nicely broken-in already (it's about 20 years old), but my usual break-in with Nanolube has already reduced the smooth, long trigger pull from 10 to 9 pounds, just cycling parts while doing my initial teardown. The next hundred rounds should take the trigger pull as far as it can go.

Without seeking it out (something that's happened to me about seven or eight times this year), I glanced down at the used handgun case, and that mythical compact fluorescent light bulb went off in my head like it does in cartoons. M1911 ergonomics, slab sided, no external controls except the slide stop/takedown, and a caliber that won't draw sneers. Also a hammer that can't bite, and only a pro-forma beavertail. The only downside, so far, is that OEM mags are hard to find and expensive, and Promag aftermarket magazines are generally rated as carp.

Range report this week, I hope. And I'd love to report on the bigger project, but it's almost like that name that should never be mentioned, especially after dark. Everything is legal and aboveboard, but if Lord Bloomberg got whiff of this, he'd have a cow so big it would make 24-ounce softdrink cups look like a tempest in a teabag.

And after mangling all those cliches, I'll sign off until the next unscheduled event appears.

3,843 posted on 06/04/2012 12:03:22 AM PDT by 300winmag (Overkill Never Fails)
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To: 300winmag; 2Jedismom; Bear_in_RoseBear; Corin Stormhands; ecurbh; ExGeeEye; g'nad; HairOfTheDog; ...
New PJ Video! Tour of Stome Street Studios, Wellington, NZ
3,844 posted on 06/07/2012 8:15:50 AM PDT by ExGeeEye (Romney Sucks. Mutiny Now, or something.)
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To: ExGeeEye

It’s getting exciting!


3,845 posted on 06/07/2012 11:42:14 AM PDT by SuziQ
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To: ExGeeEye

Thanks for the update video; quite an operation.


3,846 posted on 06/07/2012 2:23:53 PM PDT by osagebowman
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To: ExGeeEye; 300winmag
In most cases, the single biggest detriment to accuracy is the shooter himself.

what he said...

3,847 posted on 06/17/2012 5:18:40 AM PDT by g'nad
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To: 300winmag
mrsnad's sister's FIL passed away a few years back, and his widow's family just got around to auctioning his 60 gun collection... they offered me an opportunity to purchase 2 guns at 80% of bluebook... his collection included a lot of vey expensive Brownings Weatherby's that have never been fired, Grade V stocks...

I chose a S&W 36, and a Savage 99A in .243, which I shot on the range with the now-deceased FIL... the 99A has iron sights and a rotary magazine, and 200 yds, I was dropping 9" steel silhouettes without fail...

3,848 posted on 06/17/2012 5:33:29 AM PDT by g'nad (guns don't kill people... I kill people...)
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To: osagebowman

~yawn~... more coffee...


3,849 posted on 06/17/2012 5:35:08 AM PDT by g'nad (guns don't kill people... I kill people...)
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To: osagebowman

~yawn~... more coffee...


3,850 posted on 06/17/2012 5:35:29 AM PDT by g'nad (guns don't kill people... I kill people...)
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