Shooting/Marksmanship

Here’s A Target Rich Environment!

by Todd Walker

As most of you know, I don’t advertise on my site. Not in the traditional sense. I do promote products that I find useful and of high quality from time to time. This is one of those times.

First, I have no financial interest in any product I promote here. The Target Source is no different. I’ve mentioned Clark Ellard’s targets before here. He makes his targets at his home in his shop from AR500 steel. I’ve shot other “walking” targets before that were cheaply made. That shooting experience made me want to go back to shooting tin cans off a log.

Clark’s targets are made here in the U.S.A. with the best materials. I’ve gotten to know him over the past few months and can attest to his character, business practices, and customer satisfaction. He’s an avid supporter of our 2nd Amendment. His background in construction allows him to customize targets, shooting houses, gun storage safes for vehicles and homes, and even safe rooms if you’re in the market for one.

With the squeeze placed on family budgets these days, you might be thinking shooting targets are down on my wish list of preparedness items. Every family should prioritize when prepping. You know the three areas experts parade out: Beans, bullets, and band aids. Great advice. But what are those bullets for? They’re a tool, like your gun, of self-defense, survival, and … family fun!

Looking at the crazy spike in ammo and gun sales since Barack Hussein’s re-election, coupled with the Newtown shooting hysteria, millions of Americans who have squeezed a trigger ran out and bought guns and ammo. Smart move. Now it’s time to train with your new tool.

No amount of watching the “Die Hard” movies will make you a proficient shootist. Like any other skill, you must practice the fundamentals. One of the best ways is to make range time a family event. If you are a gun ‘newbie’, get the proper training for yourself. Then introduce your kids to this right of passage. Watching Clark’s young son plinking a target with his lever-action .22, quite accurately, made me smile and reminisce.

I was fortunate, like so many others growing up last century (makes me sound old), to have parents that taught me how to shoot. Back then, my daddy would haul a load of trash up the dirt road to the dump. Sounds like the story line from Alan Jackson’s song “Drive.” I’d always tag along. He’d let me drive his old truck with a three-on-the-tree, too. He backed the truck up to the pit, we got out, I loaded the shotgun, and the fun began. Daddy would throw bottles into the sky for me to shoot. That’s where I learned wing shooting. Thanks for the memories, Daddy!

Drive (For Daddy Gene)

Drive (For Daddy Gene) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I don’t recommend that practice today. If you don’t have a trash dump to shoot bottles and cans, I’d recommend these quality steel targets.

They’re so much more fun than shooting holes in paper. With ever hit, there’s immediate feedback. The target ‘pings’ and moves. You know you hit your mark. No need to grab optics to confirm your accuracy. They’re a great way to keep new shooters on the range, and adds variety for experienced marksmen. For less than the price of dinning out with your family, you can purchase one of the plinkster targets. You won’t be unhappy. Plus, the little ones will thank you for introducing them to my favorite past-time.

You can click on the logo at the top of this page and you’ll be directed to Clark’s new website – The Target Source. His site is new and will be adding a price list soon. Until then, you can contact him via phone on his website.

If you’re not totally satisfied with his targets (or any product he builds), he’ll make it right. If you decide to buy from Clark, tell him I sent you. I’d love to hear your feedback.

Happy shooting!

Follow me on Twitter for the latest on our journey to self-reliance, preparedness, and resilient living: @SurvivalSherpa

Categories: Firearms, Preparedness, Self Defense, Shooting/Marksmanship | Tags: , , , | 1 Comment

6 Deadly Assumptions About Violence

by Todd Walker

The Zombie Treadmill Defense Concept

Photo credit

The “Treadmill Defense” made me laugh. Great idea! If it were only that simple. I think we all make dangerous assumptions about how to defend our property and person.

Social upheaval and “peaceful protests” are increasing and not likely to decline anytime soon. Let me say upfront that I’m not an expert in self-defense. Never allow anything I write (or anyone else for that matter) override your real-life experience and common sense.

Most people have never faced a life-threatening, violent encounter. The more I think I know, the more I begin to see how little I know. I’ve always heard that the majority of shootings happen up close and personal. How close? Two yards are less. David Nash over at Shepherd School shares some real world stats:

These FBI-compiled numbers have been pretty much the same for many years: 50% of LEOs killed are killed at five feet or less, and 75% killed are killed at ten feet or less.   The second source is the Police Marksman Association survey done in 1992 showing the average police gunfight was won at about 20 feet seven yards (but note that this conclusion was from a pretty small sample.)   Finally, there is the data from NYPD’s SOP-9 that indicates that from 1994-2000, 69% of their shootings (of all types) were at two yards or less, and 88% were at seven yards of less.  These numbers are pretty consistent from year to year.

Priorities dictate that we address our most immediate threats. Evidently, they’ll be too close for comfort. Spending range time shooting handguns at paper targets 25 yards away is not the best use of time or ammo. Statistically speaking, long shots (over 10 yards) are not likely. It’s not so ego-boosting to shoot silhouettes that you could almost touch with your outstretched hand. Could I hit that target when a chemical dump occurs in me when facing a kill or be killed violent encounter?

I’ve been guilty of preparing for home and self-defense based on theory. I’ve been in fights growing up and one legitimate street brawl that Mama caused (not really). There were no rules. Nothing fair. Just complete mayhem. Do not assume real-world violence will be anything close to what you see in scripted Hollywood fight scenes.

6 Deadly Assumptions

1.) I live in a “safe” neighborhood

We’ve had several car break-ins in our middle class neighborhood over the last several months. Two of our locked vehicles were broken into just recently. Nothing of great value was taken except loose change. My truck ax, hatchet, two knives, and a limb saw valued at over $300.00 were untouched. This still doesn’t negate the fact that some thug violated our space and sense of security.

Never take for granted that your surroundings are safe. Assuming you are secure is a myth.

2.) Violent encounters in the real world are similar to Hollywood versions

The good guys never run out of bullets and are able to summon superhuman strength to beat the bad guy. This thought process is similar to today’s Hollywood survival shows. They are entertaining but nothing like a real survival scenario.

The theory is only helpful if it works – which is usually not the case. Let’s erase the visions of mall ninjas and Rambo action heroes. Predators don’t fight fair. There won’t be a referee to stop the guy before you lose that last breath of air trying to “tapping out.” All the black belts moves you learned in class won’t save you in real violent encounters.

3.) Rules of engagement apply

There are no rules in violent encounters. If you are fighting fair, you’re doing it wrong. Criminals intent on violence don’t worry that you’ve had years of martial arts training or achieved top-gun status at your gun range. Predators pick the time and types of bad stuff to do to you. Their advantage is the element of surprise. It immediately puts us in the  mode of self-defense. Self-defense is reacting and recovering from being in the wrong place at the wrong time.

In my coaching days, I worked on both sides of the football. I made my living on the offensive side. I liked the advantage of knowing where we would attack. The defense was always guessing even though they knew our tendencies. I’ve always been told to go on the offensive in any unavoidable violent encounter. Take the violence to the attacker.

This is not a school yard chicken dance with kids bumping chests and talking smack. In life or death situations, do whatever it takes to stay alive. This will require losing our moral codes and social niceness and do unthinkable violence to our aggressor. That’s what thugs plan to do to you.

4.) The police will help 

Even if you have time to dial 911, the response time is usually so slow they have to make a report and inform the next of kin. The police are not obligated to protect individual citizens no matter what the motto on the black and white cruiser says. NEVER delegate responsibility for your safety to someone else. With cities going bankrupt, we do indeed need to lock our doors and load our guns. San Bernardino has seen a 50 percent increase in murders this year.

Don’t be a statistic.

5.) I am trained to handle violence

This has been a difficult article to write. Being a civilized, moral person, it’s depressing to delve into the mind of violent thuggery. Unless you’ve experienced this kind of violence and lived to tell about it, I don’t think it’s possible to fully wrap our minds around what it takes to flip the switch and become violent.

From everything I’ve read (people with actual experience) and seen in real life, no one single act of violence is the same. No amount of controlled training in a class can prepare us for real world violence. Yes, Chuck Norris groupies are included here. You are a resource to predators. A piece of meat. There are no training facilities that I know of which allows students to destroy and kill each other. But that’s what it takes to stop predators hellbent on their mission – destroy, rape, pillage, and kill.

Will our social training and martial arts classes save us? I’m not anti-martial arts. Get all you can get. I just don’t want you to assume that you’re trained for real violent encounters when your attacker has no rules.

Knowing how to perform roundhouse kicks is not enough. Being mentally able to flip the switch from controlled, moral, socialized citizen, to a primal eat-or-be-eaten violence machine is necessary – and dark – and outside the paradigm of who we say we are.

6.) I’m safe because I carry a gun 

While I highly recommend this tool, it offers no guarantee of safety. Carrying my weapon gives me some sense of security. I’m not overconfident or cocky when carrying. Being aware of situations and surroundings is helpful. It’d be convenient if predators could be identified by external appearance. We simply can’t tell sometimes.

I’ve never shot another human being with a gun, unless BB gun wars count. They don’t. A higher standard is imposed on legally armed citizens. To quote Boston T. Party on why to pull the trigger, “You shot to stop – not to kill. Any kill is incidental, unless the only way to stop his lethal actions was to kill.” This is not to say aim for extremities and not vital organs.

Mr. Royce does a great job explaining your responsibility and liability when pulling the trigger in Boston’s Gun Bible – a must read for anyone legally carrying weapons and concerned about liberty, personal safety, and defense. A gun is designed to put distance between you and those intending you harm. After a certain distance, the threat is no longer a threat. Guns are the great equalizer. A 110 pound female has an advantage over a 250 pound thug if she has her gun in hand.

A human being is the most dangerous animal in the world as it alone has the ability to strike a deadly blow at a distance. ~ Boston’s Gun Bible, p. 4/1

 

Are you guilty of any of these deadly assumptions?

Keep Doing the Stuff of Self-Reliance,

Todd

P.S. – You can also keep up with the Stuff we’re Doing on TwitterPinterestGoogle +, YouTube, Instagram, and Facebook… and over at the Doing the Stuff Network.

P.P.S – If you find value in our blog, Dirt Road Girl and I would appreciate your vote on Top Prepper Sites! You can vote daily by clicking here or on the image below. Check out all the other value-adding sites while you’re there… 

Thanks for Sharing the Stuff!

Copyright: Content on this site (unless the work of a third-party) may be shared freely in digital form, in part or whole, for non-commercial use with a link back to this site crediting the author. All links in articles must remain intact as originally posted in order to be republished. If you are interested a third-party article, please contact the author directly for republishing information.

Categories: 180 Mind Set Training, Preparedness, Self Defense, Shooting/Marksmanship, Survival | Tags: , , , , , , | 19 Comments

Women make better shooters than men … or do they?

Kathy Jackson is a firearms instructor, a homeschool mom, a small business owner, a former magazine editor, a freelance writer, and the author of the website Cornered Cat. This article is reprinted with permission from her personal blog Scratching Post. Head over and check out some great shooting advise!

Keep doing the stuff,

Todd Walker

__________________________________

by Kathy Jackson

October 3, 2012

Okay, I’m about to slaughter a sacred cow here. I’ve held my peace about this (most of the time) for years, but the time has come to speak out. Women do not naturally make “better shooters” or “better students” than men do.

There are three reasons I dislike hearing people repeat the old myth that women do make better firearms students than men do.

1)      It is not true. This is what is true: truly new students make much faster and more impressive progress than allegedly “new” students who aren’t new to firearms at all. People who have spent a lifetime developing bad habits will need some time to erase those bad habits before they can learn good ones. This is true for both men and women. People who start with a blank slate, having never handled a firearm before, usually make very rapid or even dramatic progress under the tutelage of a competent instructor. This, also, is true for both men and women.

 When we compare apples to apples—brand new shooters to other brand new shooters; novice shooters with existing bad habits to other novice shooters with existing bad habits—we see almost no difference at all between men and women in firearms classes. It is only when we conflate the two, and compare the truly novice female to the badly-taught or untaught male that we see the dramatic, measurable difference in skillsets between male and female “new” students.

Not only is the saying not true in a skillset sense, it is also not true in a “good student” sense. I have worked with both men and women who are good students, and with both men and women who are poor students. If I wanted to make a sex-based rule about this, I would say that women who have a bad attitude about learning to shoot do tend to do a slightly better job hiding that fact from the instructor than similarly-resistant male students do—and that’s about it. But pleasant outward behavior does not mean these resistant students are getting what they need.

Read the rest here

Categories: Firearms, Preparedness, Shooting/Marksmanship | Tags: , , | Leave a comment

Cold Hard Facts On Gun Bans: “The Cost Of Liberty Can Be Measured In the Loss of Life”

Cold Hard Facts On Gun Bans: “The Cost Of Liberty Can Be Measured In the Loss of Life”

By Mac Slavo
August 3rd, 2012
SHTFplan.com

“Laws that forbid the carrying of arms…disarm only those who are neither inclined nor determined to commit crimes. Such laws make things worse for the assaulted and better for the assailants; they serve rather to encourage than prevent homicides, for an unarmed man may be attacked with greater confidence than an armed one.”

Thomas Jefferson

While anti-gun advocates put forth every argument under the sun for why you should not be able to own a “high capacity” magazine that holds more than 10 rounds, or that you shouldn’t be able to buy ammunition online, or that police should stop going to work until guns have been completely banned, the evidence for disarmament of law abiding citizens as a failed policy is overwhelming.

In Chicago, where guns have essentially been banned for personal defense, the murder of innocents has risen so sharply in recent months that Mayor Rahm Emanual has been left with no other option but to call on criminals to look to their morals and values to stop the carnage. Washington D.C., which bans the carrying of concealed weapons, has maintained one of the highest gun crime murder rates in the country for over three decades – since the legislation was passed in 1975. As the Washington Post notes, the disarming of local residents has been wholly ineffective noting that the “guns kept coming, and bodies kept falling.”

Read the rest here

Categories: Firearms, Preparedness, Self Defense, Self Ownership, Self-reliance, Shooting/Marksmanship, SHTF, TEOTWAWKI | Tags: , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Carry Tools of Protection, ALWAYS!

by Todd Walker

Just got back from a little R&R with the Dirt Road Girl. Very refreshing!

I just checked my news sources and learned about the shooting at the Batman screening. What a senseless tragedy. Sympathies and prayers to the families and survivors.

Let the gun grabbing begin. Each time a crazed moron goes on a shooting rampage, talking heads do what they do and call for disarming the general public. Only police should carry deadly weapons. The over-reaction has begun. Expect TSA style gropings coming to a theater near you. It’s for our ‘safety’ citizens. The sad part is that many welcome and want this kind of ‘security’. Rainbows and candy canes all around. That’s why I don’t watch any TV news.

 

While on our little get-away, DRG and I spent every morning and evening walking on the beach. We’re not huge sun worshipers for medical reasons. We do l0ve the ocean and sand. Doesn’t this pose a problem with concealed carry? Nope. I was packing when we kicked the waves washing on shore, fished off the pier, and picked up seashells. We joke about me carrying at times. But, you never know.

I bought DRG a pocket pistol a few years ago for Christmas. She thought they were ‘cute’. I have to agree. However, after shooting the Ruger LCP, she decided to stick with her revolver. I inherited the little gun… dang it! We call her “Lucy”. She’s easy to conceal in a pocket or inside a waist line. With the right amount of cleavage, a bra might work. She accompanies me everywhere I’m legally able to bring my little friend – like the beach. [Don’t forget to clean thoroughly after exposure to salt water atmosphere]

I don’t patronize businesses that proudly sport their “Gun Free” signs. Private property is private property and I will respect their wishes by not going inside. Here’s the exception: I have to leave Lucy at home when I go to my teaching job. It’s a weapon free zone; a.k.a. “Victim Zone.” I wondered how the shooter was able to do so much damage in a packed theater. I’m sure there had to be a few concealed permit holders there. Why didn’t they produce their weapon and ventilate the mad man? Oh, the theater is a “Gun Free Zone.” Like me, permit holders a law abiding clan. I guess the shooter didn’t see the sign.

Please don’t take that last statement as making light of this deadly encounter. I’m simply saying that we all have to make a choice and have a plan for the worst case scenarios. For me and mine, I choose to be armed at all times. My weakest point is in the classroom. I feel naked in school. Naked is good in a few situations, but not when it comes to a preparedness plan for self-defense. Leaving ‘education’ again is a pot on the front burner of my brain. There are many ingredients in the pot that make for the soup of change in my life. The ‘victim zone’ issue is only one of them.

Guns are tools. Keep them in your preparedness tool box and on your person… ALWAYS!

 

Keep Doing the Stuff of Self-Reliance,

Todd

P.S. – You can also keep up with the Stuff we’re Doing on TwitterPinterestGoogle +, YouTube, Instagram, and Facebook… and over at the Doing the Stuff Network.

P.P.S – If you find value in our blog, Dirt Road Girl and I would appreciate your vote on Top Prepper Sites! You can vote daily by clicking here or on the image below. Check out all the other value-adding sites while you’re there… 

Thanks for Sharing the Stuff!

Copyright: Content on this site (unless the work of a third-party) may be shared freely in digital form, in part or whole, for non-commercial use with a link back to this site crediting the author. All links in articles must remain intact as originally posted in order to be republished. If you are interested a third-party article, please contact the author directly for republishing information.

Categories: Firearms, Preparedness, Self Defense, Self-reliance, Shooting/Marksmanship | Tags: , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

Survival Sunday Roundup from the PrepperSphere

Sunday, 01 July 2012

For your prepping pleasure:

The Single Most Overlooked Survival Technique

Off the Grid News

Separating fact from fiction in order to make an appropriate choice during a stressful situation is incredibly important.  Situational awareness can be the key component in the decision-making process, and makes it (the stressful situation) infinitely easier to deal with.

Read the rest here

 

CharlottePrepCon Protecting What Matters Most

Keynote speaker: James Wesley Rawles of SurvivalBlog.com

Call it Survivalism. Call it Prepping. Call it Back to Basics. Call it whatever you want, but the movement to become more self-reliant, grow and can your own foods, reduce your carbon footprint and preparing in case of a natural (or not so natural) disaster is the basis for the upcoming CharlottePrepCon event. A full day of speakers, exhibitors and breakout sessions will be followed by a family-friendly outing to Knights Stadium for a baseball game and fireworks! Speakers will include James Wesley, Rawles of Survival.Blog.com, talk show host Vince Coakley, Scott Hunt and David Kobler of Practical Preppers, Rich Davis of DCG Real Assets and Steve Nolan of SurvivalWeek.com.

Tickets and information available at CharlottePrepCon

 

Are You Packing? 5 Inexpensive Ways to Store Your Food

Tess Pennington
Ready Nutrition

You can spend a fortune on food for long term storage, but if you don’t protect your investment, that money could be completely wasted.  Proper storage containers don’t have to cost a fortune.  You can glean many different kinds of containers from things that would normally be thrown away.  Once you’ve alerted friends and family that you are seeking these containers, you will likely be given more containers than you could ever use!

Read the rest here

 

Proper Leverage

by Matthew

Straight Forward in a Crooked World

Sometimes in the American gun culture there is this all or nothing idea when it comes to being prepared for bad situations; often ignoring the reality of the middle ground in the realm of day to day preparedness.

On one end there is the OCD end-of-the-world-zombie-apocalypse idea that if you haven’t squandered your families earnings on MREs, multiple military grade rifles and hundreds of thousands of rounds of ammo you are, as Chris Rock says, “gonna die”.

The flip side of the coin is this weird obsession by the gun market and manufacturers to build uber light weight .380s and 9mms that can only be held onto with two fingers, has a light rail, and no sights (don’t want to weigh the gun down you know…’cause there’s a light rail).

One could suppose, justly, that my cynicism is leaking through.

Read the rest here

 

50 Free self-reliant and preparedness books for your Kindle reader

by Atticus Freeman

Self-Reliant Info

If you’ve read our posts for very long at all, you probably know this: the only thing we like better than preparedness and self-reliant resources are free ones! Fortunately, there are many Kindle books available for no cost over at Amazon.com.

Many of the free books are simply old books from the early 1900s that are in the public domain, but there a number of newer ones too. Of course, some of the older books are useful just because they often describe how to do things without complex machinery or modern processes, which is very helpful for the self-reliant do-it-yourselfer.

Below is a list of 50 Kindle books that are related to self-reliance and/or preparedness, which are free to download (at least as of the time of this writing).

Read the rest here

 

 

Categories: Food Storage, Frugal Preps, Preparedness, Self-reliance, Shooting/Marksmanship, SHTF, Survival Sunday | Tags: , , , , , | Leave a comment

In Defense of Lever Guns

I harvested my first deer at age 10 with my dad’s Winchester Model 1894. Michael speaks wisdom in defense of lever guns. Check his blog out at Straight Forward in a Crooked World.

Source: Straight Forward in a Crooked World

Proper Leverage

 

Sometimes in the American gun culture there is this all or nothing idea when it comes to being prepared for bad situations; often ignoring the reality of the middle ground in the realm of day to day preparedness.

On one end there is the OCD end-of-the-world-zombie-apocalypse idea that if you haven’t squandered your families earnings on MREs, multiple military grade rifles and hundreds of thousands of rounds of ammo you are, as Chris Rock says, “gonna die”.

The flip side of the coin is this weird obsession by the gun market and manufacturers to build uber light weight .380s and 9mms that can only be held onto with two fingers, has a light rail, and no sights (don’t want to weigh the gun down you know…’cause there’s a light rail).

One could suppose, justly, that my cynicism is leaking through.

Earlier this week I had to escort a client on a protection detail that on a threat assessment chart was medium edging towards high. The information in his care was literally worth millions but, he was basically an unknown player in the world. The problem was further exacerbated by the fact the opposing side knew 60% of the intelligence he was running, coupled with the two hour drive through both urban and rural areas to get there and back.

That morning as I was getting ready to leave The Wife walked past the dining room table were I had laid out all my gear the night before and jokingly said “think you have enough firepower?”

“I will, unless I run out. Then I won’t.”

Read the rest here…

 

Categories: Firearms, Self Defense, Shooting/Marksmanship, Survival | Tags: , , , | Leave a comment

Does Not Compute for Gun Grabbers: More Guns, Less Crime

Source: Washington Times

MILLER: Gun ownership up, crime down

Gun-control advocates are noticeably silent when crime rates decline. Their multimillion-dollar lobbying efforts are designed to manufacture mass anxiety that every gun owner is a potential killer. The statistics show otherwise.

Last week, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) announced that violent crime decreased 4 percent in 2011. The number of murders, rapes, robberies and aggravated assaults all went down, continuing a pattern.

“This is not a one-year anomaly, but a steady decline in the FBI’s violent-crime rates,” said Andrew Arulanandam, spokesman for the National Rifle Association. “It would be disingenuous for anyone to not credit increased self-defense laws to account for this decline.”

Mr. Arulanandam pointed out that only a handful of states had concealed-carry programs 25 years ago, when the violent-crime rate peaked. Today, 41 states either allow carrying without a permit or have “shall issue” laws that make it easy for just about any noncriminal to get a permit. Illinois and Washington, D.C., are the only places that refuse to recognize the right to bear arms. The Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence did not respond to requests for comment.

If the gun grabbers were right, we’d be in the middle of a crime wave, considering how many guns are on the streets. “Firearms sales have increased substantially since right after the 2008 election,” said Bill Brassard, spokesman for the National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF), which represents the $4 billion firearms and ammunition industry. “There was a leveling off in 2010, but now we’re seeing a surge again.”

The FBI’s National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) serves as one of the best indicators of gun sales because it counts each time someone buys a gun. Checks hit an all-time high of 16.5 million last year. In the first five months of this year, the numbers have gone up 10 percent over the same period last year as Americans rush to the gun store in case President Obama decides to exercise “more flexibility” in restricting guns in a second term.

Gun manufacturing is the one private-sector industry “doing fine” on Mr. Obama’s watch. Sturm, Ruger & Co. sold 1 million firearms in the first quarter of 2012 – an amazing 50 percent increase from the first quarter of 2011. The jump was so steep that the company stopped accepting orders from March to May to catch up with demand for its products.

Last month, Smith & Wesson announced a firearm-order backlog of approximately $439 million by the end of April, up 135 percent from the same quarter in 2011. Sales in that period were up 28 percent from 2011 and 14 percent over its own predictions to investors. NSSF estimates the industry is responsible for approximately 180,000 jobs and has an annual impact on the U.S. economy of $28 billion.

Mr. Obama could honestly take credit for this jobs program, economic boost and the reduction in violent crime that has followed the spike in gun ownership on his watch. Instead, he’s silent about his greatest positive accomplishment.

Emily Miller is a senior editor for the Opinion pages at The Washington Times.

Categories: Life-Liberty-Happiness, Self Defense, Shooting/Marksmanship | Tags: , , | Leave a comment

DIY Preparedness: Ed’s Red Bore Cleaner Recipe

Here’s an old article from Survival Blog with Ed’s Red Bore Cleaner recipe. After making a batch, print a hard copy for your files.

Source: SurvivalBlog.com

Author: Charles M.

Do It Yourself Gunsmithing, by Charles M.

Permalink | Print

Much has been written about what particular guns are best for home defense and SHTF, but I haven’t seen much about taking care of these weapons when gunsmiths are not around.  Let’s look at what typically causes firearms to fail.

As a gunsmith, the main cause of firing malfunctions I see is dirt.  This can be crud built up from dust collecting in oil forming a grease-like substance, or rust, or build-up from burned powder (carbon), or residue from the casings or shells.

The second most encountered problems stem from magazines, or broken or weak springs.  Lost pins or screws, and broken extractors or firing pins tend to be the next [most common] group of failures.

So how do you prepare for these problems?  First, if you don’t have an owner’s manual for your gun, go to the manufacturer’s web site and download one.  It will give you information on proper operation, how to field strip the gun for cleaning, and lubrication instructions.  If it is an older gun, you may be able to find a manual at StevesPages.com.  The next document you should have is an exploded parts list and instructions on disassembly and assembly of the firearm.  Many of these are also available at StevesPages.com.

The next thing you will need is a good cleaning kit.  Be sure you have lots of patches, and extra bore brushes for your particular caliber.  A chamber brush is also helpful.  There are all types of bore cleaner solvents.  Pick your flavor.  Here is a recipe for a great bore cleaner that you can make up yourself.  It was invented by C.E. ”Ed” Harris. You can always bottle some of it for barter later.  It is the widely-used “Ed’s Red” (ER).   This cleaner has an action very similar to standard military issue rifle bore cleaner, such as Mil-C-372B. Users report it is more effective than Hoppe’s for removing plastic fouling in shotgun bores, or caked carbon fouling in semi-automatic rifles or pistols, or in removing leading in revolvers. It is not as effective as Sweets 7.62, Hoppe’s Bench Rest Nine or Shooter’s Choice for fast removal of heavy copper fouling in rifle bores. However, because “ER” is more effective in removing caked carbon and abrasive primer residues than other cleaners, metal fouling is greatly reduced when “ER” is used on a continuing basis.  It is inexpensive, effective, provides good corrosion protection and adequate residual lubrication so that routine “oiling” after cleaning is rarely necessary, except for long-term storage of over 1 year, or harsh service environments, such as salt water exposure.

CONTENTS: Ed’s Red Bore Cleaner
1 part Dexron II, IIe or III Automatic Transmission Fluid (ATF), GM Spec. D-20265 or later.
1 part Kerosene – deodorized, K1
1 part Aliphatic Mineral Spirits, Fed. Spec. TT-T-2981F, CAS #64741-49-9, or may substitute “Stoddard Solvent”, CAS #8052-41-3, or equivalent, (aka “Varsol”)
1 part Acetone, CAS #67-64-1.
(Optional up to 1 lb. of Lanolin, Anhydrous, USP per gallon. It is okay to substitute Lanolin, Modified, Topical Lubricant, from the drug store)

MIXING INSTRUCTIONS FOR “ER” BORE CLEANER:

[JWR Adds This Warning: All of the usual precautions for handling caustic and flammable solvent fluids must be taken, such as wearing goggles and rubber gloves.]

Mix outdoors, in good ventilation. Use a clean 1 gallon metal, chemical resistant, heavy gauge PET or PVC plastic container. NFPA approved plastic gasoline storage containers are also okay. Do NOT use a HDPE container, which is permeable, because the acetone will eventually evaporate. The acetone in ER will also attack HDPE, causing the container to collapse, making a big mess!

Add the ATF first. Use the empty ATF container to measure the other components, so that it is thoroughly mixed. If you incorporate the lanolin into the mixture, melt this carefully in a double boiler, taking precautions against fire. Pour the melted lanolin it into a larger container, rinsing the lanolin container with the bore cleaner mix, and stirring until it is all dissolved. Divert a small quantity, up to 4 ounces per quart of the 50-50 ATF/kerosene mix for optional use as an “ER-compatible” gun oil. This can be done without impairing the effectiveness of the remaining mix.

Label with necessary SAFETY WARNINGS: RIFLE BORE CLEANER, CAUTION: FLAMMABLE MIXTURE, HARMFUL OR FATAL IF SWALLOWED. KEEP OUT OF REACH OF CHILDREN.  Flammable mixture! Keep away from heat, sparks or flame. FIRST AID, If swallowed DO NOT induce vomiting, call physician immediately. In case of eye contact immediately flush thoroughly with water and call a physician. For skin contact wash thoroughly.

The lanolin can be found at better pharmacies like CVS or Walgreens.  Ask the pharmacist, they usually have it in the back, not out on the shelves.

Ed’s Red will not dissolve copper fouling, so have some copper remover solution on hand.  Be aware that the ammonia in the copper remover can damage stock finishes, and will dissolve brass bore brushes.  Have some extra brushes on hand, or use a stainless steel brush.

The next item to have on hand is a quality gun oil.  They are all pretty good.  Note above that you can make your own from ATF/kerosene mix.  If you want to improve on this, add a little lanolin.  The lanolin provides longer term protection, since some of the other ingredients will eventually evaporate.

INSTRUCTIONS FOR USING “Ed’s Red (ER)” Bore Cleaner:
Open the firearm action and ensure the bore is clear. Cleaning is most effective when done while the barrel is still warm to the touch from firing. Saturate a cotton patch with bore cleaner, wrap or impale on jag and push it through the bore from breech to muzzle. The patch should be a snug fit. Let the first patch fall off and do not pull it back into the bore.
Wet a second patch, and similarly start it into the bore from the breech, this time scrubbing from the throat area forward in 4-5″ strokes and gradually advancing until the patch emerges out the muzzle. Waiting approximately 1 minute to let the bore cleaner soak will improve its action.

For pitted, heavily carbon-fouled guns, leaded revolvers or neglected bores a bronze brush wet with bore cleaner may be used to remove stubborn deposits. This is unnecessary for smooth, target-grade barrels in routine use.

Use a final wet patch pushed straight through the bore to flush out loosened residue dissolved by Ed’s Red. Let the patch fall off the jag without pulling it back into the bore. If you are finished firing, leaving the bore wet will protect it from rust for 1 year under average conditions.

If the lanolin is incorporated into the mixture, it will protect the firearm from rust for up to two years. For longer term use Lee Liquid Alox as a Cosmoline substitute. “ER” will readily remove hardened Alox or Cosmoline.
Wipe spilled Ed’s Red from exterior surfaces before storing the gun. While Ed’s Red is harmless to blue and nickel finishes, the acetone it contains is harmful to most wood finishes.
Before firing again, push two dry patches through the bore and dry the chamber, using a patch wrapped around a suitably sized brush or jag. First shot point of impact usually will not be disturbed by Ed’s Red if the bore is cleaned as described. It is always good practice to clean your guns twice, two days a apart whenever using corrosively-primed ammunition, just to make sure you get all the corrosive residue out. [JWR Adds: If in doubt about the priming used in any batch of military surplus ammunition or any ammunition of any description that is made in Eastern Europe or China, clean your guns repeatedly!]

Remember, after cleaning, you can apply a thin layer of oil to protect from rust.  Blued or parkerized finishes will still rust.  But notice, I say “thin”.  Excess oil will attract dirt, and can freeze an action in very cold weather.

Now, for spare parts.  Replacement spring sets are available for most guns, usually for about $10 to $20.  They are inexpensive, and can be purchased from www.Brownells.com  or www.Midway.com.   The other items I would recommend are replacement pin kits, a spare firing pin, and a spare extractor.  If you have an odd or old gun, you may be able to find parts from Numrich at www.GunPartsCorp.com.  Some guns like an AR-15 have critical spare parts kits available for around $35.  Even if you don’t feel comfortable replacing some of these parts, gunsmiths will be around, and if you have the parts, and diagrams, they can fix it for you.

Recommended tools would include a basic gunsmithing screwdriver set, some pin punches, a plastic faced or rawhide hammer, needle nose pliers, and some sort of vise, with padding for the jaws.  Specialty tools might be a broken shell extractor for your caliber rifle.

Battery powered optical sights are great, but be sure to have spare batteries, and some sort of iron back-up sights in the event they break.  Extra magazines are also essential.

I don’t want to get into specific guns to buy, but I would recommend a “reliable” one.  Cheap or worn-out guns should be replaced now.  You can keep old ones for barter, but don’t rely on them for yourself.  Also, some guns can cycle reliably on any ammo you feed it, while others are very sensitive to different loads and brands.  You may not be able to have the luxury of buying the exact brand that you like in a SHTF situation, so maybe it is time to trade for one that is happy with anything.  Most new guns need at least 500 rounds run through to properly break them in.  Another good reason to practice!

Another good source of information on particular firearms are the gun forums online.  For instance, GlockTalk.com, AK-Builder.com, FALFiles.com, or AR-15.com. You will learn pretty much all that you need to learn from them.  Just remember, as with this and any info you find on the internet, use common sense applying it.

Categories: DIY Preparedness, DIY Preparedness Projects, Frugal Preps, Preparedness, Self Defense, Shooting/Marksmanship, SHTF, Survival Skills | Tags: , , , , , , | 2 Comments

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