Sunday, November 26, 2017

GunBlog VarietyCast Radio #171 - Talking Turkey

We recorded this on Thanksgiving, between Erin's lunch and Sean's dinner. We apologize if listening makes you hungry.
  • Beth is on assignment.
  • A burglar is shot and captured. But what did he do just before that? And who were they, really? Sean takes a look.
  • Risk vs. Reward is as important a consideration in the Tech world as in real life. Barron is back to talk about doing a proper risk assessment.
  • Miguel is still on assignment.
  • In this week's Main Topic, Sean and Erin the tackles the "Giffords! Courage to Fight Gun Violence!" new position paper "Legal and Lethal: 9 Products That Could be the Next Bump Stock." <Dramatic Music>
  • Tiffany recently appeared on the Polite Society Podcast with fellow Rangemaster-certified instructor Aqil Qadir. She was so intrigued by his story that she asked if he would sit for an interview.
  • Erin spent the week shooting a gun in her back yard. Don't worry, it was an air gun. She's going to tell you about it and the heavy duty bullet trap she needed to make sure everything was safe.
  • Anti-Gun Researcher Tom Gabor is back, and he's not any more factual than last week. Weer'd issues the appropriate corrective.
  • And our Plug of the Week is Silver Spoon, a really awesome Russian cop drama on Netflix.
Thank you for downloading, listening, and subscribing. You are subscribed, right? We are available on iTunes, Stitcher Radio, and Google Play Music!

Listen to the podcast here.
Read the show notes here.

Thanks to LuckyGunner and Remington for their sponsorship, and a special thanks to Firearms Policy Coalition for their support.

Blue Collar Prepping Transcript: 
Air Guns
As I mentioned in the introduction, I received an air rifle, a Gamo Wildcat Whisper, from my friend Charles Lee Scudder. While not strictly necessary, an air rifle is something very nice to have in your preps for a variety of reasons.
  • They are inexpensive. A decent air rifle costs between $100 and $150, depending on what options you choose. 
  • So is the ammunition. The most common caliber for air rifles is .177 -- from now on, I’ll just call this .17, okay? -- and this stuff is ridiculously cheap. 500 rounds of .17 cost about $6. 
  • Because of this, you can practice a perishable skill economically. Air guns are better than .22 rifles in that regard. 
  • It’s a good training platform for children. The rifles are light, there’s no recoil, and there’s no “bang”, which means there’s no startle reflex to overcome.
  • They’re quiet. When I used mine in the backyard, the only sound I could hear was the PING! from the bullet hitting the trap. My mother, who was about 20 feet away inside the house, couldn’t hear it at all. This means you don’t have to go to a range to practice; you can practice in your yard or inside your home, so long as you have a good backstop. 
  • It’s not a legal firearm. This means that you can buy it online, have it delivered to your home, and there’s no paperwork to fill out. 
When considering an air rifle for purchase, there are two big choices to make: caliber and action.

While there are actually four popular airgun calibers - 17, 20, 22 and 25 - to my mind there are only two worth considering due to availability and effectiveness: 17 and 22.
  • .17 caliber is cheaper, more readily available in stores, and comes in variety of ammo types: greater penetration, greater impact, greater expansion, and match grade for practice and competition. It is also a flatter-shooting round.
  • .22 caliber pellets are slightly harder to find in stores and cost twice as much, but have MUCH more impact when used for hunting.
Ultimately, caliber choice comes down to what you want your rifle to do.
  • If you want to hunt with it, you should get a .22, because a .17 is likely to pass through an animal without killing it, allowing it to run away and die later.
  • If you want it for practice or training, get a .17.
  • If you plan to use it for vermin control, either caliber will do, although .17 is probably more cost-effective.
When it comes to what kind of action to use, your choices are CO2 cartridge vs Pump.
  • CO2 rifles are easier to use and faster to shoot, because you won’t have to pump the rifle up after each shot, but add another consumable to your preps and extra layer of complication.
  • Pumps are slower to load, and it can be a pain in the rear to un-shoulder the rifle, put the buttstock on the ground, break the barrel open, load the pellet, close the barrel, re-shoulder, and fire, but they also have fewer complicated parts and all you need are pellets.
  • For this reason, I recommend pump action rifles for preppers.
When it comes to pump actions, there are different choices, but that risks getting into the weeds of break-barrel versus pneumatics. For those who are interested in learning more about air rifles, please check the show notes for a link to a Blue Collar Prepping article on air rifles. Give it a read!

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