Article on the Ultimate Left-handed Semi Auto

•27 July 2014 • Leave a Comment

The ultimate left-handed semi auto carbine – can you guess what it is? Click here!

vz58 Detail

Check out the Review of the New Mepro TRU-DOT RDS!

•24 July 2014 • Leave a Comment

Check out the full review of the new Mepro TRU-DOT RDS reflex sight here:


Affordability and Military-Grade Durability meet in the Mepro TRU-DOT RDS Sight

The special edition TRU-DOT RDS sights are available for pre-order here:

Meprolight TRU-DOT RDS sight AR-15


Where do the senate candidates stand?

•16 July 2014 • Leave a Comment

As we approach the primary, one thing I hear over and over is that people have no idea who to vote for in the primary. Most seem to think the Republican candidates all take a similar stand on relevant issues, including gun rights.

This is an important election, and we need to elect a senator who we can trust to do all he can to stand against the dangerous direction our government is headed. We need to look past what the candidates a currently telling us and consider their long-established stances and previous actions on these issues. Here is an independent comparison of where each candidate stands on key issues:

Download the PDF Files Here:
AK Senate Candidate Comparison Chart
AK Candidate Comparison Sources

Click image to view at full size, or download the PDF from the link above.

Click image to view at full size, or download the PDF from the link above.

Click above image to view at full size.

Click above image to view at full size.


1895 Browning .35 Whelen beautification project.

•28 June 2014 • Leave a Comment

An 1895 Winchester chambered in .35 Whelen has been one of my dream rifles for many years. I always watched for a good deal on a .30-06 1895 Browning to convert. A few months back, one showed up on Gunbroker already converted to .35 Whelen. My wife promptly bought it for me. You may have seen the post about it here.

1895 Winchester Rifle marketed by Browning in 1984. Rebored from .30-06 to .35 Whelen.

1895 Winchester Rifle marketed by Browning in 1984. Rebored from .30-06 to .35 Whelen.

The 1895 Browning is the ideal rifle to convert to .35 Whelen. The steel used is stronger than the steel in the original Winchesters, and the original Winchesters have value that could be lost in converting them. The current Miroku-built Winchester 1895s have tang safeties and rebounding hammers that make the actions more complicated, cause a poorer trigger, and add the danger of a hammer dropping when the rifle is on safe, causing the shooter to cycle the action and try again, instead of placing the rifle on fire.

Browning 1895 Rifle in .35 Whelen.

Browning 1895 Rifle in .35 Whelen.

The Browning rifles are great rifles. They are well-built, strong, and nicely finished. There was little I do not like about the rifle, but there were a few things. This rifle came with the standard front sight and a Williams receiver sight. The front sight was actually a very nice sight, but was thin and fine and would be subject to damage on a rifle meant to be used hard. The Williams receiver sight is a great sight, but I am a bit of a traditionalist and it looks squarish and modern and is made with aluminum, which adds to its modern looks. So while I use Williams receiver sights on more modern-style rifles, it just wasn’t right for me on this particular rifle.

The buttplate was a simple, flat, smooth, thin steel buttplate. The edges were sharp, and the face smooth and slick. It is the poorest feature of the rifle and seems almost an afterthought. The forend was a schnabel forend, but very blocky, not nicely shaped like the originals, and the finish was a varnish that is thiner and more traditional-looking than heavy poly finishes on the current Miroku Winchesters.

1895 Browning 35 Whelen Lyman 17A Globe SightThe first thing that went was the sights. The front sight base was soldered to the barrel and easily removed by carefully applying heat. A dovetail was cut in the barrel and a Lyman 17A receiver sight installed. Since I was very busy with jobs for customers, I dropped it off with a customer’s rifle that needed work to Precision Arms in Anchorage to have the dovetail cut. Vince at Precision Arms not only cut the dovetail, but fit and installed the sight at no extra cost.

Providecne Tool Company Pattern 21 SightThe rear sight was replaced with the Providence Tool Company Type 21 sight. This sight is a replica of the Lyman Model 21 sight that was originally designed for the Winchester 1895 when the rifle was introduced by Winchester. The Providence Tool Company Pattern 21 sight has traditional styling and looks right on the 1895 Browning.

I emailed Providence Tool Company and received a call from Frank, who gave me the model number of the correct Lyman 17A globe sight to work with the Type 21 rear sight, and advice on installing sights. I purchased the Type 21 sight and an aperture to fit it from Providence Tool Company and purchased a Lyman 17A globe sight and Lee Shaver inserts from Brownells.

It looks like the checkered steel shotgun buttplates used on the current Miroku-built 1886 rifles would be almost a drop-in fit on the Browning 1895, with the same curve and size, but instead of searching for one, I chose to use a repro Winchester buttplate that had been collecting dust for a few years. It was advertised for a Winchester 71, but turned out to be too narrow for the Model 71. It was the right width for the Browning 1895, though.

So the factory front sight and Williams receiver sight were removed and replaced with the Lyman globe sight and Providence Type 21 rear sight. Installation was straightforward on the Providence sight, as usual.

Checkered Steel Shotgun Buttplate Installed

Checkered Steel Shotgun Buttplate Installed

I removed the factory buttplate. Using a wide belt sander, I flattened the back side of the repro shotgun buttplate. I began inleting the top spur of the buttplate to allow it to be held in place on the stock, and then scribed a line on each side of the stock to determine the correct curve for the new buttplate. Using a spindle sander, with a shim to keep the butt square, I reshaped the curve the match the butplate. A couple hours worth of careful fitting with sandpaper and inletting black gave me a perfect fit. I could have sped the process by removing the spur on the buttplate, but I think it is worth the extra effort.

After fitting the wood to the buttplate, I screwed the buttplat on, scribed a line on the buttplate, an fit the buttplate to the stock. By working carefully, I brought the buttplate just to the size of the stock without going under. I then reattached the buttplate to the stock and did the final fitting of both wood and metal together with sandpaper. Since the plate is hollow underneath, I bedded it with epoxy, and then left the buttplate on the stock as I did the final sanding in preparation for the refinish. The resulting fit is perfect between the metal and the wood.

Since the buttplate was cast, it had a rough surface and some flaws that were cleaned up by sanding and polishing, and then the buttplate was blued with Brownell’s Oxpho blue.

The stock and forend were stripped and sanded carefully. The schnabel forend was reshaped using files and sanding to a more graceful shape, reminiscent of the original Winchester forend shapes. This proved to be quite easy, and I really like the results.

Re-shaped Schnabel Forend

Re-shaped Schnabel Forend

I refinished the wood by applying several coats of Formby’s Gloss Tung Oil, cut two-to-one with turpentine (two parts turpentine to one part tung). This carries the oil deep into the wood for a very stable finish. Once several coats were applied, I used Tapadera’s Gunstock Stain, the Winchester red stain. It is an alcohol-based dye that is very easy to apply and control, and gives great results. Once the color was where I wanted it, I continued with applying coats of the oil until it filled the wood and gave me the surface luster that I was looking for. The resulting gloss oil finish is beautiful, really stabilizes the wood, does not show damage as noticeably as a poly-type varnish, and can easily be touched up at any time. Damage to the surface of an oil finish does not open the wood to damage by water, like damage to a coated finish, like a varnish or lacquer does. By using the gloss tung oil, I can get the smooth finished look similar to shellack over oil, without the hassle of working with shellack and dealing with future damage to the shellack.
1895 35 Whelen Providence 21 and globe sights

35 Whelen 1895 Winchester Providence Pattern 21 Lyman 17The result is a rifle precision-made from modern steels that has the look of an original Winchester from decades ago, chambered in one of the greatest hunting cartridges  ever developed; the .35 Whelen. With the ability to be loaded from .357 Magnum levels right up to bear-crushing 250 gr. loadings that match most popular magnums in usefulness, in a rifle with the speed and balance of the 1895 Winchester, this will be a rifle I will be using heavily.

I think Col. Townsend Whelen would be proud.

1895 Winchester 35 Whelen Globe Sight

Providence Pattern 21 Sight

1895 Bowning Barrel Markings

Guns in Schools: Arming the School Resource Officer

•27 June 2014 • Leave a Comment

KPOS G2 Glock Front

The Pistol-Based Carbine

By basing a carbine on a pistol, the officer has the concealment and ease of carry of a pistol combined with the stability and accuracy of a carbine. This is ideal for a school resource officer. A pistol placed in a KPOS carbine conversion gives the SRO a very concealable, easily carried carbine that can have an optic mounted. Why is this an advantage over a pistol? If you think about how schools are laid out, you will immediately think about long hallways, large cafeterias, and gymnasiums. Outside the school building you will find wide parking lots, soccer and football fields, running tracks, and playgrounds. Every one of these areas presents the possibility that an SRO will be faced with an active shooter at distance, in many cases over 100 meters, with children between them or beyond the shooter. Very few officers are skilled enough with a pistol to take a 100 or 150 meter shot with complete confidence in a hit on a human-sized target. On the other hand, it is unlikely that a SRO, presented with such a situation, would return to an office somewhere, recover a carbine, and then go searching for the shooter again. A pistol installed in a KPOS system will give an SRO the ability to make shots at 150 meters with confidence. The combination of the stable firing stance the officer can achieve with a carbine and the use of an optic will make the officer both faster and more accurate, especially at ranges outside of practical pistol range.

Click here to read the full article on arming the school resource officer.

School Resource Officers and Armed Teachers

•19 June 2014 • 1 Comment

Recently, school shootings have made headlines and heated arguments about how to best protect children in schools.

While the politics get heated, and activists use tragic events as tools to push whatever agenda they are promoting, the realities get lost in the hype. Statistics are inflated using drug and gang related violence that takes place wherever those involved happen to be. Since they happen to be on school property sometimes, this violence sometimes happens on school property, but these are crimes related to specific activities and often specific locations, not the terroristic active shooter situations most people envision when these statistics are quoted. The truth is, school shootings have decreased over the last decades, and we see fewer than we used to. While that is a nice statistic, it means little to parents who have lost children in one of these acts of terror.
Anti-gun politicians say that the presence of any gun on school property only endangers the lives of the children present and they oppose the presence of armed security at schools. This is an argument based on emotion, not on reason; it is an argument meant to promote an agenda, not to protect children.
In this country, most people cannot carry a firearm into the secure area of an airport. There are laws prohibiting it. There are signs notifying travelers. There are X-ray machines and metal detectors. Does anyone feel that that is sufficient to protect travelers? Of course not. Airports are guarded by armed airport police. Armed sky marshals fly on planes. Some pilots are armed.
Firearms are prohibited in most courthouses and federal buildings. There are laws prohibiting them. There are signs warning people that firearms are not allowed. There are metal detectors. Does anyone feel that this is enough to protect those who work there? Of course not. They use contracted armed security, or armed police officers or sheriff’s deputies.
Firearms are prohibited in most schools. There are laws and signs. Some schools have metal detectors. And the minute anyone suggested placing armed personnel in a school, there is an outcry that children’s lives will be in danger as a result.
We see armed security at sports arenas, at banks, at ports, at train and subway stations, malls, military installations, borders, concerts, fairs, parades, and patrolling our towns and highways. A a society we recognize that all of this is required to protect against violent criminals. Do we really imagine that the armed security or police officer that is present at the mall where kids go after school, at the airport where kids travel, and at the bank where kids stand in line with their parents will suddenly be a grave threat to children the minute he steps on to school property?
No matter how fast police response times are, police responding from off-campus can never be fast enough in an active shooting situation. When a murderer enters a school intending to kill children, there must be someone on-scene and prepared to end the threat.
There has been some talk of Israel’s armed security and armed teachers. Some discount the effectiveness of this program, claiming that the situation is much different. I will admit the situation is different. Israel faces a determined, fanatical, and often well-trained enemy. The threat to their schools comes from well-armed and skilled terrorist fighters. Israel deals with this threat on many levels, from actively hunting terrorists to saturating their society with armed military, police, and security personnel who carry their weapons on and off duty. The armed school personnel are the last line of defense for the children, but an important one.
The statement has been made that Israel does not ever have demented students or members of the community that enter schools and murder students. In fact, even with all the terrorists who would like to target Israeli children, there have been only a few attacks on schools over the last decades. We cannot tell how many attacks were deterred by the knowledge that there were armed personnel at the schools, or how many were deterred by other layers of Israeli security. We also cannot know if there were cases in which a student or member of the community would have attacked an Israeli school, but did not because they knew they would face armed security.
The stationing of armed police officers in schools can be an important step toward deterring school shootings and stoping any that are not deterred. The recent shooting in Oregon is a good example. A student entered the school with enough ammunition to do great carnage, yet was stopped in less than a minute by police officers who were stationed in the school.
Stationing police officers in schools is not always feasible in every area due to budget and manpower limitations. Even where SROs are stationed in schools, trained armed teachers are cost-effective, provide on-scene response, and have the advantage of the element of surprise. There is no reason to believe that a well-trained teacher could not be as safe and effective as a police officer. After all, these are college-trained, screened professionals that we trust to be intelligent and responsible enough to train our children.

The truth about the Oregon School Shooting

•18 June 2014 • Leave a Comment

Remember how the NRA said the cure for school shootings was armed personnel on school grounds, armed teachers or armed security or both?

When I started to read about this shooting on Oregon, I immediately was struck with two things – the response time was way too fast for officers outside the school to have responded, and the news reports were carefully worded to make it seem that officers responded from outside the school, without directly saying it.

I told my wife that this was not officers going to the school to respond, but SROs who were AT the school responding. Sure enough, that information has slipped out, though the last I saw, the major news companies are still not mentioning it.

Seems to me that the presence of armed personnel, who, according to the hype, only “endanger the children,” because “bringing a gun on school property only makes children less safe,” probably saved a lot of lives.

I wonder what the average response time is for police in that community? The SROs responded in less than a minute.

So we have school resource officers who heard two gun shots and reached the scene in less than a minute, causing the shooter to flee into a bathroom where he shot himself as one of the SROs fired at him.

The media would have us to believe that the teacher who was shot ran and called 911. Police were dispatched and arrived at the school where they entered and looked for the shooter. Meanwhile, for unknown reasons, the shooter “made his way from the locker room to a bathroom” where he hid and then shot himself when the police finally found him.

There is lots of talk about how the NRA and American gun owners caused this crime, by preventing the banning of guns, but not a word about the fact that it was the presence of armed personnel at the school that stopped the shooting in less than one minute.

I suppose that is expected from the same politicians and media that ridiculed the NRA for suggesting such a thing.



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