Thursday 30 June 2016

USA Today AR15 Charity Raffle:

A gun store in the suburbs of Chicago is raising funds for the victims of the Orlando shooting by raffling off one of its most popular products – an AR-15 semi-auto rifle in the same calibre as the one used in the massacre.

Second Amendment Store in McHenry, Illinois, has pledged to give all funds raised from raffle tickets for an AR-15 military-style rifle to One Orlando Fund.

The store’s owners, Bert Irslinger Jr and his father Bert Sr., have said they will donate $2,000 on top of what is raised by the $5 raffle tickets.

- Meanwhile the US Govt. will vote on a counterterrorism package that will include a provision to prevent suspected terrorists from buying guns, Speaker of The House Paul D. Ryan told Republicans on a conference call Thursday, according to a source on the call.

Republicans believe terrorism and mental illness have been leading causes of most mass shootings.

Marty K. 

Wednesday 29 June 2016

Bullet Shooting Crossbows and modern catapults:

English Stonebow from Around 1760.

The historic bullet-shooting (stones, baked clay pellets, or cast lead slugs) crossbow featured many similarities to the slingshot - a similarly effective but much simpler weapon - ask 'Big G' (the biblical warrior Goliath - a 'pagan' Philistine).

Both feature a pouch that holds a small projectile. In comparison tests, the bullet-shooting crossbow only shoots slightly faster - but much more accurately than the slingshot - but the slingers were better at sea as bow strings got damp and stretched on board ship.

Oddly enough, but that boys favourite - the catapult - can be faster again - but you need to train with it and have decent elastic in good condition - a modern invention eh.
Mid 18th Century BulletBow.

The bullet-shooting crossbow had the potential to fracture skulls and break bone, but as this only one way to take down the enemy - the bullet-shooting crossbow didn't match up with the standard crossbow firing sharp pointed bolts or arrows that let the blood out quicker in wartime.

Some modern arrow-shooting (arrows may weigh 300 to 400 grains) compound crossbows claim to be faster than 400 ft. per sec. - Medieval longbows and crossbows would be achieving only 130 - 140 ft. per sec. when loosed  (not 'fired' fire involved eh) but with a heavy arrow or bolt - plenty of effective power.

Most bullet-shooting crossbows used small bullets primarily for hunting. The small calibre rounds were perfect for killing animals like birds and rats. Crossbows don't give off much sound. Even though more powerful weapons were later invented - like the air gun*, the bullet-shooting crossbow has been used extensively throughout history for putting meat on the table because it wasn't loud enough to scare-off the rabbits, pheasants or wood-pigeons. - Naturally in their day these bows were the poachers weapon of choice.

* Earliest example of a 'spring-piston' compressed air gun is dated 1580 in a Stockholm museum. - The Girandoni air rifle was a Napoleonic pre-charged 51 calibre Austrian military weapon capable of 20 rounds per minute back in 1780.

- I think that the Brits are still permitted low power air guns?

Modern 'Shanghais', 'Catapults' or Slingshots are also very quiet while hard hitting and fun to use. Have a look in your local friendly gun shop - selling here for around NZ$30 :

Note: One theory is that a "shangeye" comes from an English dialect word for a cleft stick 'shangy' ? 

- The way gun law is under pressure worldwide currently - you might need an elastic powered version soon - Current English "Gun Shops" seem to specialise in racks of green rubber Wellies (rubber boots) and waterproof canvass jackets for grey-squirrel watching.. Southern England is infested with "cute" grey squirrels  ("tree rats") - and vermin foxes.
Issue every Brit teenage male with a catapult!
Have a look at The Pocket Shot Slingshot video for a neat idea that claims to shoot at 350 feet per second:

This stuff is NOT suitable as toys for young kids - as glass and steel balls will cause serious injury.

Marty K.
Zombie Slayers check-out:

 I've signed-up to Patreon. - NOW you can send me a wee support $ - starting from $1 to get all this stuff from New Zealand:

Monday 27 June 2016

'London NAVY' Revolver Conversion .36" to .38?:

Above photo is a 'normal' cap & ball London Navy .36" Calibre - while below is JBTFLs new 'Conversion' model fitted with a two part gated 'single-action' cylinder for use with a metallic cartridge - in this case it is marked for the .38" Colt Long cartridge:

 'JBTFL' had to buy this 'Conversion' when he saw it in an auction - to keep his other Uberti Navy company (they play much more nicely when together eh. - JBTFL = John Boy The Farmers Lad).

- The conversion consists of an open-ended rotating cylinder and a fixed breech-block with a gate that pivots open for loading/unloading the cartridges.

Just to help clarify the calibre issue with these Conversions Wikipedia lists these thus:

Colt 1851 Navy Revolver .. Cartridge: .38 Rimfire / .38 Centrefire (conversions) Calibre .36

- So that's clear eh.

How it is? - is that the .36 Calibre Navy used 80 grain lead balls that measured .375" - .380" diameter which had to 'obturate' (squeeze-down) into the .375" bore and rifling.

Colt London Navy Conversion (.38 really .36?)(Or .36 really .38)
 with my Ruger Old Army .44"(really a .45")

These calibres and names for cartridges are incredibly confused - without any real system until our more modern era.

You surely DO learn something new every day - when looking for history on this conversion I read that the very first Navy model Thuer conversions used a tapered cartridge to insert into the chambers from the front - thereby avoiding the Rollin White patent for open ended cylinders:
Thuer Tapered Brass Cartridges.
Only approx. 1,000/1,500 guns converted this way.

- Then it seems that in 1871 a Colt employee Charles Richards was awarded a patent for his cartridge conversion and that was further improved the following year 1872 by another Colt worker William Mason - so these later Navy Cartridge-Conversions should be properly known as an '1851 Richards-Mason Navy' .

These conversions were very popular as they were cheap and the guns were worked hard by the cowboys of the day - being used to hammer staples into posts to fix barbed-wire fences etc.

- It seems that you can either use .38 Special cartridges (pills measure .357" diameter) loaded with soft lead hollow base bullets to bump-up to bore size - or you can use .38 Long Colt cases with a correctly sized stepped heal bullet.

Life gets complicated eh..

Marty K.

Saturday 25 June 2016

Silencers - Suppressors:

Two big negatives effect shooters (- outside of the sometime risk of being shot yourself) - One is the toxic health consequences of ingesting lead particles or fumes - the other big issue is hearing damage   - What?

Suppressors - often called  'Silencers' - work somewhat like a car muffler to reduce the noise level by slowing the 'exhaust' gas and giving it room to expand and loose pressure before venting to atmosphere. Even sub-sonic cartridges have super-sonic gasses that loudly blast past the bullet as it leaves the muzzle.

One of the most successful silenced guns around is said to be the World War II 'De Lisle Carbine' These were built in England as modifications of the Lee-Enfield .303" bolt-action rifles.

These rifles were converted to the sub-sonic pistol calibre .45"acp using modified Thompson sub-machine gun barrels and Colt 1911 magazines with a full length large diameter suppressor having 13 baffles (size does matter).

Why not just 'silence' the .45" Tommie Gun? - Well any automatic or semi-auto action is 'blown-open' or operated by the cartridges high pressure gasses which then leak noisily from the open action - so the best suppression is achieved by a manually operated gun like a bolt-action.
Cheap eh:

The large De Lisle suppressor tube works with the sub-sonic .45" round to yield a remarkable low noise signature measured at 85.5 dB. - these guns are said to have been so quiet that the noise of the bolt being worked was louder than the shot being fired - so they then fitted rubber pads to soften that 'clack' as the bolt handle hit the action metal. (An unsilenced .308" Winchester rifle might typically record around 156 dB).

The velocity of these sub-sonic 45"acp rounds is further slowed by the cross-drilled barrels that reduce gas pressure in the bore of the De Lisle - making them quieter than otherwise.

An early WWII De Lisle prototype was supplied for testing in the 9mm Luger calibre but it was rejected - probably because sub-sonic 9x19mm ammunition was hard to find back then - complicating use of that calibre for covert operations. Currently most standard 147 grain 9mm ammunition is reliably sub-sonic and can be nicely silenced.

Many suppressors manage around 30 dB. sound reduction - while ear muffs can give between 18 to 32 dB. reduction at the ears. Note that small bore guns can be made quieter than larger guns firing at similar velocity. A normal unsilenced super-sonic rifle shot can typically be heard up to four miles away.

Noise measurement is not simple - as the perceived level of noise is also dependent on the duration of the peak noise level. - While many current suppressor manufacturers boast that their sub-140 dB. silencers are hearing safe - US OSHA rules a maximum exposure limit of 130 dB. for under a second.

-  0 dB is silence - above 140 dB may cause permanent hearing loss. - 220 dB can kill you (by percussive shock).

When taking the mickey out of Magnum shooters I have been known to say that nobody was ever killed by a loud noise - I was wrong.
This indicates that if you are firing multiple shots you would be wise to wear hearing protection even when using a silenced firearm.. especially if anyone around owns a 44 Magnum revolver! (- have you noticed that 44 Magnum owners don't seem to use them much?).

Both of my 9x19mm silenced  rifles - a De Lisle Carbine copy and a Just Right semi-auto Carbine are very comfortable to shoot when using my home brewed 158grain sub-sonic ammunition - but as I am already deaf in one ear I seriously try to have my ears protecteded all the time when on the range.
Gunworks (NZ) Suppressors.

There must be a considerable cost saving to be made in treating hearing loss by getting shooters to buy and use silencers and other hearing protection.

Some countries including New Zealand have no restrictions on the purchase and use of 'silencers' and have zero resulting crime problems. - Other more 'paranoid' administrations strictly forbid them -  or impose strong regulations, long delays and expensive permits. Since the 1934 Gun Control Act in America there is a discouraging delay and fee to pay for silencers and "short rifles"

- Quote from 'Tactical Use Of Low-Signature weapons For Military and Police'(Mark White):

"The US Department of Veterans Affairs spends more than a Billion Dollars a year on treating veterans with hearing damage"

Pakistan punishes possession of a silencer with a lifetime prison sentence.

WARNING: I've just come across a warning about condensation inside silencer bodies - When blowing hot shooting gasses through cold metal bodied suppressors there can be moisture condensed onto the baffles that may cause rusting in your barrel & action - especially if you store the rifle in the usual way - standing upright with the barrel pointing skyward. Any moisture collected in the silencer body can then run down into the barrel and cause corrosion.

The suggested solution is to unscrew & remove the silencer for storage and run an oiled patch through the guns bore before putting it away. - Take any gun out of its padded rifle bag (or leather holster) for term storage.

Marty K.

Wednesday 22 June 2016

Roman Bullets Whistled When Taking The Top Off Your Head:

This report from Live Science. - But there may be some debate as to are these 'sling-shots' properly called 'Bullets' ?

Some 1,800 years ago, Roman troops used "whistling" sling bullets as a "terror weapon" against their barbarian foes, according to archaeologists who found the cast lead bullets at a site in Scotland.
Weighing about 1 ounce (30 grams, - 463 grains), each of the bullets had been drilled with a 0.2-inch (5 mm) hole that the researchers think was designed to give the soaring bullets a sharp buzzing or whistling noise in flight.
The bullets were found recently at Burnswark Hill in South-western Scotland, where a massive Roman attack against native defenders in a hilltop fort took place in the second century A.D.
Lead Bullets.
These holes converted the bullets into a "terror weapon," said archaeologist John Reid of the Trimontium Trust, a Scottish historical society directing the first major archaeological investigation in 50 years of the Burnswark Hill site.

"You don't just have these silent but deadly bullets flying over; you've got a sound effect coming off them that would keep the defenders' heads down," Reid told Live Science. "Every army likes an edge over its opponents, so this was an ingenious edge on the permutation of sling bullets."

The whistling bullets were also smaller than typical sling bullets, and the researchers think the soldiers may have used several of them in their slings — made from two long cords held in the throwing hand, attached to a pouch that holds the ammunition — so they could hurl multiple bullets at a target with one throw.

"You can easily shoot them in groups of three of four, so you get a scattergun effect," Reid said. "We think they're for close-quarter skirmishing, for getting quite close to the enemy."
Sling bullets and stones are a common find at Roman army battle sites in Europe. The largest are typically shaped like lemons and weigh up to 2 ounces (60 grams), Reid said.
Smaller bullets shaped like acorns — a symbol the Romans considered lucky — have also been found at Burnswark Hill and other sites in Scotland.
'Lemon' Shot.

About 20 percent of the lead sling bullets found at Burnswark Hill had been drilled with holes, which represented a significant amount of effort to prepare enough ammunition for an assault, Reid said.

At the time of the Roman attack on Burnswark Hill, slings were used mainly by specialized units of auxiliary troops ("auxilia") recruited to fight alongside the Roman legions.
Among the most feared were slingers from the Balearic Islands, an archipelago near Spain in the western Mediterranean, who fought for the Roman general Julius Caesar in his unsuccessful invasions of Britain in 55 B.C. and 54 B.C.

"These guys were expert slingers; they'd been doing this the whole of their lives," Reid said.
In the hands of an expert, a heavy sling bullet or stone could reach speeds of up to 100 mph (160 km/h) = 146.7 feet per second (sub-sonic eh ;-): "The biggest sling stones are very powerful — they could literally take off the top of your head," Reid said.

Roma 3 - Celtic 3

In A.D. 158, the Romans gave up their plans to conquer the north and pulled their legions back to Hadrian's Wall.
"Scotland is rather like Afghanistan in many respects," Reid said. "The terrain is pretty inhospitable, certainly the farther north you go, and the isolation and long supply lines would make it difficult for servicing an army that far north."  (And the locals could fight)

- More ideas for re-loading duplex loads.

Marty K.

Monday 20 June 2016

A New Kind Of Gun Lock: ZORE:

ZORE - A New Generation of Gun Storage - it links to your phone or computer with alerts etc. 
A cartridge-shaped lock that allows quick access & offers tampering alerts for your gun.
ZØRE was started by a team of former IDF elite combat & technology veterans who have experience as well as a deep understanding of gun safety. ZØRE has invented a revolutionary gun storage product that does not embed anything inside of the gun. ZØRE’s RAPIDial™ storage lock and Watchdog smart phone alert system will make gun storage safer, easier, and more accessible than ever before. ZØRE aims to empower gun owners with freedom and accessibility for their guns.

- It might catch-on - but here in NZ we have to use a safe.

Marty K.

Friday 17 June 2016

Loaded Gun Found in NZ Parliament:

Our media are headlining the story that a loaded Police Glock pistol was reported as having been found by a member of the public in a washroom / toilet inside the Wellington NZ Parliament Buildings.

Current speculation is that a member of the Diplomatic Protection Squad may have removed or dropped the gun whilst using the toilet facilities and somehow not noticed that he no longer had it.

I hope that the howls of the outraged commentators are treated with the import they deserve - as I am sure that the officer concerned will still be shuddering with that horrid empty feeling we all get when we discover the loss of something important.

There will be no reason to take extreme disciplinary action in this matter - I'm certain that the officer concerned is the most security conscious person ever available for the rest of his career.

- Good Luck mate. I once heard of a young kid picking-up a snubbie revolver from the carpet in the Christchurch airport terminal and running after the on-duty uniformed officer calling "Hey mister - is this yours?" - Bloody stupid ankle holsters they were trying .. they then for a while used a sort of rectangular leather 'lunch box' banging about on their waists.

Marty K.

Thursday 16 June 2016

Guns Used by Orlando Killer:

As time passes the story of what actually happened and maybe why - will come-out.

The first FACT I have found is that this New York born killer did not use an "AR15 Assault Rifle" as has been widely reported - but actually had a Sig-Sauer MCX (piston actuated) rifle said to be in .223" calibre.
Sig-Sauer MCX Carbine - Designed for the .300 Blackout Cartridge.

- Calibre I don't know - but no doubt that issue may be resolved factually in due course - but certainly this shooter did not use a machine gun (or even a sub-machine gun) as claimed by various others.

*** Confirmed  17th June from an official 'inside' source that the MCX rifle calibre IS .223" and a Glock 17 - plus a 38 in his vehicle that was not used in the shootings. ***

Now to be clear - I am not saying that it makes any difference to the victims and their families what type of gun was used - what I am concerned about is that the commentators and reporters feel free to make-up their own version of what happened with a cavalier attitude and a careless concern for fact.

The second weapon the killer had is said to be a Glock 17 9mm semi-auto pistol.

It also seems that this 'Muslim fanatic' was a regular customer at this 'Gay Club' - the LGBT Pulse Orlando - where he drank heavily (Muslims are forbidden to use alcohol).

There may further be a question as to whether some of the bullet injuries are from 'friendly fire' police shots. I did observe that photographs of the site showed many shots had been fired from outside - around the openings made by the assault team.

Not remarkably accurate shooting?

Marty K.

Tuesday 14 June 2016

American Medical Association Expresses 'GUN' Concerns:

"With approximately 30,000 men, women and children dying each year at the barrel of a gun in elementary schools, movie theatres, workplaces, houses of worship and on live television, the United States faces a public health crisis of gun violence," AMA President Dr. Steven Stack said in a statement following the terrible Orlando night-club shooting deaths.

Now I don't intend to belittle his serious concerns about the US trend of violent nutters committing atrocities - indeed I share the same horror, concern and disgust that anyone feels able to be so hateful and uncaring as these murderers.

- However, if my 'facts' are accurate - I understand that 71% of those quoted "30,000 gun deaths" .. 21,300 are in fact officially recorded as suicides and it would be unreasonable to blame the deaths of those despairing souls on a lack of Federal gun regulation.

I feel that the high level (but reducing) gun violence in USA is in part the result of hugely complex factors including poor care of the mentally ill and destitute - neglect of social care for the poor, - a widening gap between the wealthy 'haves' and the increasing 'have-nots' - poor educational standards of many, - and wilful ignorance.

Sociopaths are identified as individuals who act with no empathy for others - seeing everyone else as a resource to be harvested for their own benefit. They have no regard for moral standards.

Perhaps sociopaths justify their actions by thinking they are doing only what their nations leaders do.

Corporate Business is a legal artifice constructed to act exactly like a sociopath. Every 'Big Business' has as its sole aim to harvest or exploit as large a 'market' as it can generate and extract as much profit for its owners as it can without permanently destroying its source of income - and each corporate entity seeks to employ expert 'consultants' to eliminate all its obligation to contribute taxes that might fund social needs like Education, Health, Pensions, Defence, & Law Enforcement.

More gun regulation? - maybe, - but that won't fix all the other factors.

Marty K.

Friday 10 June 2016

NZ Gun Licences Will Be Harder To Get:

Two days ago I had a visit from the Police Licensing Authority to check my endorsed firearms security - he had to check that my 'B' Category handguns were properly held under the required level of security - and that his records of my pistols and revolvers matched the police supplied list.

We had to work through a full-sized book of questions about my house door hinges, locks, burglar alarms, window construction and materials, how was my gun safe bolted to the property structure - and where did I keep my keys. Then I had to countersign his entries at the bottom of each page.

- All a bit tedious really as the questions and answers were the same as last time one year ago - other than one gun sold and a couple of new purchases. But that's the systems requirements.

Rural Women New Zealand (RWNZ) is very concerned about the changes to firearms’ licensing, training and testing, being proposed by the Mountain Safety Council (MSC).

Currently the MSC Firearms Safety Programme has about 480 volunteer instructors with significant hunting and shooting experience. They are based in 150 locations in New Zealand. MSC propose to significantly reduce the number of trainers and the number of locations.

The three models being considered are:

A. 40 part time paid instructors covering 50 locations, or
B. 5 full time paid instructors covering 50 locations, or
C. 15 Part time paid and 72 Volunteers covering 50 locations.

MSC volunteers have been delivering the Firearms Safety Programme for the past 30 years and its success can be measured by the steady decline in the number of unintentional shooting incidents, better practical training and advice, and monitoring of the behaviour and safety standards of fellow shooters.

All those rural workers and residents needing to get an NZ Firearms Licence may be faced with taking days off work and having to travel into the closest City or town to attend a two day course and written test. - How many just won't bother?

The MSF Firearms Safety Council is funded by New Zealand Police to provide this training.

Of course the Mountain Safety Council maintain that these changes are only 'proposals' and that they will continue to "consult" with interested parties ..

- Where have I heard that sort of PR bull-shit before?

Marty K.

Wednesday 8 June 2016

Weak Anti-Gun Logic and 'Furphies':

I read just about anything that I find about guns - including all the anti-gun crap that dribbles down the pages of newspapers and onto television.

It has (as usual) taken me some time to conclude that the gun-banners seem to be so up-tight about firearms that they'll squeal just about anything that they can dream up - hoping that it will strengthen their emotional and otherwise weak argument.

They seem so desperate to gain support that they look at some perfectly good statistics and immediately set about exaggerating and falsifying them to create horror shock and awe arguments for their case. They are the finest example of the ancient press fable "If it bleeds - it leads"
US Television "Journalist" Katie Couric.

The recent 'cut & paste' video shown by "journalist" Katie Couric was a classic (failed) attempt to corrupt and misrepresent the truth by creative editing that falsely showed pro-gun panel members unable to reply (she cut or 'edited' their responses)..  Has she been paid for that crap? - Has she been fired for deliberately misleading the public?

It dismays me that deliberately misrepresenting the facts (lying or "misspeaking") in public is not a criminal offence.

- The reason that it is not criminal to tell lies is obvious really - politicians, spin doctors, press agents, free marketers, retailers salespersons, and advertising agencies would all cease to function if unable to tell furphies.

- To explain for the non Australians and Kiwis .. a 'Furphy' is a tale that is untrue and improbable - historically told while gathered for a drink at a water cart. (Australian business J. Furphy made water carts used by the early military).

-  The modern equivalent is the office water-dispenser.
A WWI FURPHY Water Cart at Gallipolli - Troops Gather for a Drink And To Swap Stories.

Recently Hilary Clinton claimed that there were 33,000 people killed by 'gun violence' every year.

- But she had included 3,000 justifiable police and civilian homicides to make this figure - AND she omitted to mention that 71 per cent of those remaining deaths were suicides (21,334 suicides, plus 586 accidents), - leaving 8,124 actual shooting murders - not 33,000).

- There ARE in fact some 35,000 US Motor Vehicle deaths each year - surely of at least equal or perhaps four times greater importance and tragedy.

Marty K.

Note: When purchasing 'white goods' or electronics - the buyer is often offered an unnecessary 'extended warranty' in exchange for an extra payment. - Shop workers call this a 'Mug Tax'.

Monday 6 June 2016

A Penny & Old Time Commando Standards:

I have a 1944 New Zealand penny coin that I 'treasure' because it is a nice looking coin that comes from the year that I was born .. well that is of some small importance to ME anyway!

A neat image of a Tui sitting on a flowering Kowhai branch.

But the other side - Heads - is a bit of a revelation as it shows George VI  EMPEROR - when Imperial Great Britain still thought that it was a leading power on our planet and was hanging desperately onto it's Empire.

It seems like a long time ago - but an example of attitudes back then is that I can recall a London newspaper cartoon commenting on post-war African nations daring to think that they might be able to run their own country independent of a white Colonial ruler - the picture was of those nations black independence leaders depicted as monkeys swinging by one hand from the branches of palm trees while scratching themselves with the other hand.

Here's another memory: - My Irish father being quietly outraged and pointing-out a card in the local North-West London news-paper shop window that read:


Dad (Irish) had survived TEN YEARS & 214 days in the wartime British army Irish Guards 1934 -1946 including three and a half years in The Commandos (Nos. 1 & 2 ).

- On the surface things may have changed some since those days - but underneath it all I fear that mankind remains a stupid, violent & prejudiced creature that treats others uncaringly and brutally - especially if there's a dollar to be made.
Commando Operation Archery
- Vagsoy Island Norway December 1941

I can fully understand why some people - in countries where they are allowed - feel a need to be armed and able to defend themselves.

Of course here in New Zealand I know that we have such a wonderful safe, law-abiding and civilised, well governed nation - that the only possible use for firearms is for recreation and sporting purposes.

Marty K.
P.S.  I couldn't let Muhammad Ali pass without farewell: He was my all-time hero. When I interviewed for a Civil Service clerical job in London's Whitehall in the early 1960s - the interviewing 'Establishment' Executive Officer asked if I had good health saying: 'You look like you could take-on Cassius Clay' - I laughingly replied that if I kept running backwards I might last a round.

Ali was well loved and respected in England - especially after taking-out 'our Henry Cooper.' His ready smile and quick wit should ensure that his star burns brightly for ever.

Saturday 4 June 2016

Quotes from The Great War 100 Years Ago:

.. Rifle bullets in the open went hissing into the grass without much noise, but when we were in a trench, the bullets made a tremendous crack as they went over the hollow. Bullets often struck the barbed wire in front of the trenches, which sent them spinning with a head-over-heels motion - ping! rockety-ocketety-ockety-ockety into the woods behind.

'A bloke in the Munsters once wanted a cushy,** so he waves his hand above the parapet to catch Frirz's attention. - Nothing doing. He waves his arms about for a couple of minutes. - Nothing doing. He puts his elbows on the fire-step, hoists his body upside-down and waves his legs about until he gets blood to the head. - Not a shot did Fritz fire. 'Oh' says the Munster man, 'I don't believe there's a damned square-head there. Where's the bloody German army to?'  He has a peek over the top - crack! He gets it in the head. FINEE.

This morning about breakfast time, just as I came out of my dug-out, a rifle grenade landed within six feet of me. For some reason, instead of landing on its head and exploding, it landed with its stick in the wet clay and stood there looking at me..

- Excerpts from 'GOODBYE TO ALL THAT' by Robert Graves.. truly an excellent read about how things were in the WWI era. - Available as an e-book.

- Public school traditions (private education for the wealthy) and British officers more concerned about 'a fellow officers seat on a polo horse' than they were about the expendable lives of the gun-fodder men under their command.

Only One Hundred years ago.

** "a cushy" was a non life threatening wound but serious enough to end your military service.

Martin K.

Friday 3 June 2016

Changing Nature of Cartridges - What's Next?:

Here is a picture of a 'standard' pistol cartridge that explains how a 'bullet' is only one part of a cartridge ammunition system. This picture is from the 'My Gun Culture' site.

- Many people who have watched TV and the movies for their version of how guns work will name this ammunition as a "Bullet".. Too many Cowboy and Gangster movies. - Another frequent misnomer is calling a magazine a 'clip' - but there may be precedent for this from early military usage.

While that picture above accurately shows a common type of cartridge - with a big lump of lead - we need to expect to find variations of this theme in the near future - there are of course 'expanding' or 'hollow-point' versions around - but entering the market are solid copper segmented bullets
RIP Bullets Cartridges

and a new type of injection moulded projectile (bullet) that is made using a plastic material mixed with metal dust or small steel shot. The metal 'dust' or filler material may be copper, brass, steel or even an exotic metal such as Tungsten - rather than the heavier old lead.

Both Polycase and Ruger are Offering This Kind of Ammunition.

This moulding technology may also introduce the coming requirement for NON-TOXIC lead-free bullets and FRANGIBLE bullets that will mostly not ricochet - and their shattering into small pieces when impacting on a hard surface should ease the nature of back stops on ranges that restrict ammunition use to this type.

- You honestly didn't think that the campaign against lead shotgun shot and the change-over to non-toxic steel, Bismuth and tungsten was going to end there - with shot-guns, did you?

- There are ranges being closed-down for many different reasons (noise & bullet escapes etc.) but the build-up of toxic lead (heavy metals) as a surface contaminant and accumulating in the soil of berms is rapidly going to become a major and costly issue.

Think 'Auckland Pistol Club'  - now closed following a noise complaint - and reflect on your local shooting range.. what might be done to improve your security to continue?

The 'old fashioned' cast lead bullets with their exposed greasy surfaces are on the way out already - for good reasons.. WASH YOUR HANDS.

Meanwhile the military are researching 'Case-less Ammunition' , 'Polymer Cased Ammunition' and 'Telescoped Ammunition' (where the projectile is fitted down inside the (plastic?) case for reduced bulk and weight.

- And this is only "the known knowns." - 'Technology' will sometimes follow demand and sometimes it will lead the way.

Marty K.

Wednesday 1 June 2016

Auckland Pistol Club Closed Down:

.. Here comes another one - just like the other one..

Members of Auckland Pistol Club (APC) will face the unfortunate situation of having to find somewhere else to shoot as their local club has been shut down for allegedly breaching its resources consent.
A noise complaint from a nearby property led to an environmental health officer measuring noise at the property boundary, which revealed noise in excess of the constraints of the resource consent under which the club operates.
Without any prior warning of an action against them, the club has been shut down until further notice – which is to say, shut down until appropriate measures have been taken by the club to bring it back within its resource consent’s parameters.

Dear Club members,

Today (with no prior warning of any action) the club has received notice from the council that we are in breach of our resource consent and that no further shooting may be conducted at the club until we have remedied the situation.

Information is limited at this time to an email from the council to this effect.  Obviously there are a lot of questions that need answers and we are seeking further information from the council at this time. We will keep you updated on the progress of this matter.

Martin K.

PS. May I suggest that NOW is the time for Kiwi shooters to JOIN SSANZ - urgently. - and It might be an idea for all shooting clubs with ranges to start a conversation with their local gun shops regarding long term SPONSORSHIP - to their mutual advantage.

Largest Ever Man-Made Explosion (Pre Nuclear)"

6th December 1917, HALIFAX Nova Scotia, Canada. The French Cargo ship SS Mont Blanc was carrying her cargo of high explosives very slowly on her way to Bordeaux in France when she collided at a speed of only 1 knot with the fast moving un-laden Norwegian SS Imo at around 8.45 am.

The resulting fire was uncontrolled and at 9.04:35 Mont Blanc exploded.
Some 2,000 People were killed and 9,000 others were injured.

Nearly all structures within a radius of 2,600 feet (800 metres) were obliterated. The explosions resulting tsunami wiped out a whole community of Mi'kmaq First Nations peoples.

Mont Blanc's forward 90 mm gun landed with its barrel melted-away some 5.6 kilometres (3.5 miles) to the North.


Another Explosives ship - is still waiting there off the UK coast -  but is unexploded (to date) in the South of England ..

In the UK Thames Estuary there is a 500 metre exclusion zone (1,640 feet) around the rusting World War II wreck of the SS Richard Montgomery. - An American Liberty Ship built in WWII she lays under water close to the shipping channel near the town of Sheerness.

She is loaded with some 1,400 tons of explosives including dozens of 'BLOCKBUSTER BOMBS' and 2,000 cases of cluster bombs - plus hundreds of 'normal' bombs weighing up to 1,000 pounds each.

Multi Beam Sonar Data with Laser Images Merged to Make This 3D Picture of
SS Richard Montgomery in January 2016.

She has been sunk on a sand bank for some 71 years since she dragged her anchor and grounded.

- Maybe half of her cargo was removed before the hull crack worsened  and she was abandoned as being too dangerous to attempt to move anything more.
Montgomery's Masts Still above Water (until they fall with a crash).

If Montgomery explodes - it is again said that it would be one of the biggest ever man made explosions - and its effect and possible casualties cannot be estimated.

The ship is close to the Thames Estuary area proposed to be used to locate a new London Airport (The "Boris" Airport) - and would of course need to have all of the unstable high explosive bombs removed if the new airport were to progress.

I have SCUBA dived on both WW I and WW II wrecks around Southern England - and can say that it is often noticeable how weak, brittle and thin (sharp edged too) that heavy steel plate becomes after years of immersion in salty sea water. I recall bringing up a pick/ pickaxe head from a wreck that rotted in days when exposed to air until all that remained was a miniature eight inch sized relic of the original.
Full Sized Un-rusted.

Hmm - Sellafield nuclear dumps up North and SS Montgomery down South - with all-sorts in between ..

Marty K.