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Guffaw – Now Less Gun Poor!

(as an unintended follow up to my previous post)

I’ve recounted from time-to-time in these pages about having slowly developed a small collection of firearms, only to have the 800 pound safe and her contents of the same removed in my absence.

Fifty-one guns?  An ‘arsenal’ to some.

Then Life events significantly decreased my income, making it impossible for me to rebuilt my collection.  Sad to be sure.

Thursday last, Thanksgiving, was coincidental with my birthday.  And, with the exception of one greeting card (from my insurance agent) no other cards or gifts were received.  Even though three folks did gift me with musical versions of one birthday song or another – which were nice gestures.

It would have been nice to receive a gift of some kind, though…(I’m NOT asking!)

Moving into Friday, my lovely sister took me to lunch at my favorite pizza place, and gifted me with a card and CASH!  Not enough for new (or used) ordinance, but very surprising and special nevertheless.

THANK YOU!

Upon returning home, my roommate was sitting on the couch, watching TV, and playing with her firearms.  She has a small collection, including a couple I gifted her with when we were dating.

She hands me her Sig Sauer P245 (one of the aforementioned gifts – after clearing it, of course) and states, “Happy Birthday! And Merry Christmas!”

(Me) “Wha…?”

After wrestling a few moments with the moral implications of her giving me my gift back as a gift, I said, “Thank you!”

I now have my trusted 1911 (the Bob Hall Signature Model), the S&W 442 electroless nickel, a single-shot pellet pistol sent me by an Internet friend a couple years ago, and the Sig Sauer P245.

My collection is being rebuilt – slowly!

Good things come to those who wait – sometimes even if they are impatient and brooding.

🙂

 

not precisely as pictured

not precisely as pictured

Remembering Clive

Going to the recent memorial for Bob reminded me of others who have gone before.

Like my work-pal Clive!

One of most unforgettable characters when I worked @ TMCCC was CLIVE.

At least that’s the name from which we all knew him:  Clive.

Could he have BEEN any more British?

Clive was another of the credit card fraud investigators with whom I worked.  He had the accent, was married to his American wife (his 3rd, I think) and had lived in the United States (legally) 40 years.

I once asked him why he didn’t go for citizenship.  He said a piece of paper wouldn’t change where he was born!

He was a classical liberal and loathed Margaret Thatcher.  We had many a thrilling political discussion.

He found out via the company grapevine I was a firearms enthusiast, and was quite anxious to know if I had a Lee Enfield .303 rifle.  He apparently was familiar with them through the British military.  I did not, but he still wanted to go shooting with me.  We made a desert run (with his pal, a retired Flagstaff PD guy ‘Harry’, also an investigator) and had a blast (no pun intended).

I suggested he could obtain his own SMLE, but he didn’t understand that particular abbreviation.  And, anyway, he explained his American wife (whom he lovingly referred to as SWMBO*) wouldn’t stand for it.  She didn’t like guns.  I knew a high-end range in North Scottsdale offered lockers for storage.  And he was carefully considering it.

I took a vacation week, and upon my return found out that Clive had also.  He told his wife he was not feeling well and stretched out on their couch.

He never awakened.  (this was some years ago)

I never knew much more about him, until I saw his obituary.  Turned out his first name was Richard, and he had been a respected scientist in the U.K.

From his obituary, in part…

For many years Clive was a Research Scientist for Weyerhaeuser and has three patents. He was a founder of Home Builders International, which developed low cost housing in Third World countries using mostly straw and mud for construction. He and his wife, Dawn, spent six months in Mexico City where Clive helped establish a factory to manufacture the straw and mud into a material suitable for home construction. He was the founder of the Phoenix Institute of Technology. It was a national group of scientists who developed a report on methods to generate power in Third World countries using only local resources. The report was presented to the world at an international environmental conference in New Mexico in 1995. It was written initially for the Vatican and the Mennonite Church who are the largest missionary groups in the world. This research was done and sent with no monetary exchange. (…)

Clive served 3 years in 341 Squadron of the Air Training Corps, connected to the Royal Air Force. (…)

I miss our spirited exchanges, my friend.

*She Who Must Be Obeyed

 

Saying Goodbye To Bob @ Burro Town

My dear friend Bob Hall passed away February last.  He had suffered complications from diabetes (first losing a big toe, then the lower half of a leg), then ultimately acid reflux lead to GERD, and then esophageal cancer.  The last few months of his life, he was eating through a feeding tube.  Lost half his weight, and was fighting pneumonia which finally took him.

I had known Bob, first as my investigation boss at Tom Ezell & Associates; later as my boss at Legendary Guns of the West (where I worked part-time), since 1981.  More than being a boss, he was a dear friend.  We saw each other through the stuff of life.  I’ve a stepbrother – Bob and I are much closer.

He was always honest and true to me.  His trademark was nothing is so serious that a joke cannot be made about it.  Irreverent humor – Firesign Theatre and Monty Python quotes were often exchanged between us.

He was a crack shot and loved to go ‘to the desert’ to go shooting.  Even in his final days, using a walker.  And he passed his love of guns and The Second Amendment to his wife and daughters.

He didn’t want a somber funeral.

I heard from one of his daughters that this Saturday (yesterday) was to be his memorial celebration.  A caravan of his friends and family went to the desert to one of his favorite shooting spots, did some eating, shooting, then spread his ashes.

Bob’s favorite things, family, shooting and grilling – combined!

I was honored to have been invited, and was honored to bring and shoot my 1911 – a National Match slide on a Vega frame, with lowered Bomar sights, a Micro bushing, and Swenson ambidextrous safety,  hand-fitted by gunsmith Burke Hill.  Which Bob sold to me in 1983.

I dubbed her The Bob Hall Signature Model.  My roommate calls her Bobbie.

It’s been probably 20K rounds, and except for occasional cleaning, lube and replacing the recoil spring @ 3000 rounds, not much has changed.  She remains a tack driver.

Essentially a race gun (c) 1977.

And she is my companion when the Phoenix weather permits.

Bob sold her to me for a pittance.  He never profited from guns he sold to friends.  And I had to make payments to him, I was so poor! (having been a new father at the time.)

It’s only fitting I take her to what Bob called Burro Town to shoot her one more time.

For Bob.

So, about eighteen of us gathered yesterday.  Did some shooting – ate BBQ chicken with all the fixings. (including cherry cheesecake – Bob’s favorite!)

Then, we stood in a circle and shared memories of Bob.  There was tears and laughter.  Then Anita (Bob’s wife) asked those who wish to to take some of Bob’s ashes and place them about Burro Town*.

Then, we shot a simultaneous volley in his name.  All of us using guns once owned by him!

This is the photo the family chose to place on the food table.  Bob hated having his picture taken.

20161119_135525

(*It was named Burro Town by Bob, due to the wild burros that wander the region.  Usually, we see a few.  Yesterday, they were absent.)

donkey-crossing-warning-sign

But we who loved him were there.

 

Strange Bedfellows, Indeed!

It’s been said, politics makes strange bedfellows.  I’m not a fan of this guy, but, if he can make a living spewing juvenile, naughty drivel on pay-to-play radio – so be it.

I’ve no idea (nor do I particularly care) about his other political views, but this did appear on my radar…

Of course, being the libertine he pretends to be on radio would normally attract the LEFT (progressives, democrats, etc.) but I suspect this throws them for a loop…

(from Free North Carolina)

Howard Stern Comes Out In Support Of National Concealed Carry

Via Billy

Radio talk show host Howard Stern debuts his show on Sirius Satellite Radio January 09, 2006 at the network

Howard Stern applauded President-elect Donald Trump’s policy which would give concealed carry permit holders from every state the right to carry legally in any other state Tuesday on his SiriusXM radio show.

During his campaign, Trump told his supporters he believed in the right to concealed carry of firearms for eligible citizens and talked about supporting a national reciprocity policy for all legal concealed carry holders across the United States.

Veterans Day

vet-day-2016

I always tried to make it a practice at TMCCC to stop by the desks of veterans with whom I worked and thank them for their service.

As I can no longer do that…
Lonnie, Glenn, Glenn, John, Stan, Jim, Jodie, Ardith, John, and Gloria.

Thank you for your service!

Not A Gunsmith, Part Tres’

In our last episode…

I had gone shooting with friends, and marveled at the significantly lighter trigger of my friend’s Smith & Wesson .38 snubbie.

Having carried my electroless nickel S&W 442 for going on 22 years, with the stock 14 pound trigger(!), I thought it might be time for improvement.

Duh.

SO, I order a Wilson Combat spring kit through Brownell’s (for a whopping $9) and excitedly awaited it’s arrival so I could swap out the springs and share in the love… *:x lovestruck

I received it in about four days, found my brand X gunsmithing screwdriver, and went to remove the S&W sideplate.  Two screws in, I discovered that screw #3 was NOT loosening!  Not too much of a surprise, as the cheap screwdriver shaft was turning in the handle (!), and I had never had the sideplate off.  Ever.

I own a second (better quality) gunsmithing screwdriver.  However it remains beneath a pile of unpacked boxes.  And between being disabled, having back problems (and just not wanting to) there it remained.

Suggestions were made for screw-loosening oils, but without a decent tool, it wasn’t going to happen…

My roommate said she had a quality gunsmithing screwdriver, and offered it for my use.  I jumped at the chance.  But Life got in the way.  For almost two months.  Sigh.

FINALLY, I had the tool and the time.  And access to the You Tube videos regarding J-Frame Smith smithing.  And I began the task at hand.

That stubborn screw continued to be stubborn – but not impossible. 🙂

The sideplate was finally removed, and with some minor difficulty ( I repeat, I am NOT a gunsmith), the mainspring has been replaced!!

And the trigger pull went from fourteen pounds to a whopping EIGHT!

I’ve not yet replaced the trigger return spring (Wilson give me three from which to choose!) and the instructional videos have instruction regarding stoning certain surfaces to smooth them up.  I’m not certain I’m up for that.  As Inspector Harry Callahan said, “Man’s got to know his limitations.”

FTC – I bought all the screwdriver sets (except my roommate’s), the spring replacement kit and the revolver.  Go and buy your own!

a stock photo. My piece has a little corrosion damage on the sideplate. Unattractive!

a stock photo. My piece has a little corrosion damage on the sideplate. (that whole nasty sweat issue.)
Unattractive!

Helen Rawls RIP

Tempus Fugit

Helen Rawls is a childhood memory.               Helen Rawls Obituary

Jim (about who was written here previously) is my oldest continuous friend.  I’ve known him since August 1960, when he was in First Grade and I in Third.  She was his mother.

Helen passed on Halloween at 97.

from her Arizona Republic obituary (in part):

…She spent the remaining years of her childhood in Indianapolis, graduated from Short Ridge High School, became a stenographer, and joined the Army. She was one of the first women (other than nurses), to be a member of the armed forces.

… Helen was active in the Community Christian Church, as a member of the ASU Faculty Wives and the League of Women Voters. She was also a volunteer for Meals on Wheels, tutored at local schools, and worked with various other charities. She lived the last 29 years of her life at Friendship Village Tempe.

Services are at Friendship Village Health Care Center – 2525 E. Southern Ave. Tempe, on Sunday, November 6, 2016 at 2:30 pm. Contributions can be made to a charity of your choice , in Helen’s name.

Until I read the above, I’d not known she had been in the Army.  She was my friend’s mom.  And a fine woman.  She was pre-deceased by her husband Bill, who had been a physics professor at A.S.U. in 1996.

Bill had served in the Navy.  My thanks to you both for your service.

Helen and Bill were the most functional family on the block.  (Obviously, an improvement over my dysfunctional family!)  Raised quality kids, participated in church and civic affairs, recycled before it was cool.  I knew Helen as just one of the housewives on the block.

Hardly just!

I’m glad they are together now.

 

Aeronautical Porcine Creatures!

flying-pigYep, pigs must be flying!

I’m actually writing about a sporting event.

(for the new reader, you’ve heard of sports widows?  I’m a sports orphan.  My Dad, if he wasn’t playing, coaching or officiating baseball, basketball, football and hockey, he was watching them!  Being disabled at age 12, my Dad could no longer relate to me.  See?  Sports Orphan.)

Consequently, I occasionally watch Olympic events, but none of the sports listed above.  The last time I watched an entire baseball game was probably with my Dad.  And he passed in 1977.

And certainly have no interest in any foreign sport.

My roommate hails from CHICAGOLAND.  And, while she is not a big sports fan, has loyalty to the region of her birth.  In spite of the fact she has lived in Arizona since 1981.

Which brings me to the whole pigs flying thing.  She wanted to watch Game Seven of the Chicago Cubs/Cleveland Indians World Series last night.

And she didn’t want to watch it alone…

Sigh.

So, I joined her in watching the game.  Turns out, it was a pretty even match-up (except for that Cleveland pitcher who was more of cyborg than man!)

And, we watched the entire game together.  Including the tarping of the field and through the Tenth inning.  All the way to the end.

Congratulations Cubbies!

And hats off to the Indians.  Both sides appeared gentlemanly and gave it their all.

Unlike the players in the political arena.  The game was peppered with thoroughly nasty political commercials.  And reports of vandalism and violence continue.

No riots or violence were reported following the World Series.

Maybe there’s a lesson which can be learned from this?

chicago_cubs_2016

PS – The Joe Maddon for President bumper stickers will continue for sale on the sidebar through the election.  Joe is the Cubs manager.  All monies raised are donated to a charity of Joe’s choosing (he does this a lot!)

I’m Getting All Warm And Fuzzy!

try-not-to-feel-all-warm-and-fuzzy-inside-when-you_21from Wirecutter:

Bass Pro and Cabella’s combine

OMAHA, NEB. — Outdoor gear giants Bass Pro and Cabela’s will combine in a $4.5 billion deal announced Monday.

Bass Pro is paying Cabela’s shareholders $65.50 cash per share. The deal creates uncertainty about jobs in Cabela’s home state of Nebraska. The combined companies plan to keep some operations in Sidney and Lincoln, Nebraska, but it’s not immediately clear how many jobs might be lost.

Bass Pro CEO Johnny Morris says he hopes to continue growing the Cabela’s brand alongside his own Springfield, Missouri, based chain.

Capital One will take over running Cabela’s credit card unit as part of the deal. Activist investment firm Elliott Management began pushing for significant changes at Cabela’s last fall. Cabela’s employs about 2,000 people in the western Nebraska town of Sidney, which has about 7,000 residents.
SOURCE

Yeah, I don’t know about this merger’s effect on jobs, but there is a Cabela’s 40+ miles NW of me, and a Bass Pro maybe 7 miles NE of me.  If they both remain open, I vote to go to the NE location. 🙂

NOW, If I just had money…

(PS – word on the ‘Net is they are differently themed stores, and undoubtedly something will be lost in this merger.  As I’m pretty much a window-shopper only, it has little effect on me.  And I remember my first (and only) visit to Cabela’s.  And the handgun display proclaiming a model by LES BAUER! (it should have been Les Baer)  Not everyone is perfect.)

 

The 22%

ccwI remember (way back in the 1970s – when I got into gun stuff as an adult) fantasizing that I lived in a State that had concealed weapon permits!  How cool would THAT have been?  Being able to be armed – discreetly!

One of the reasons I wanted to become a cop was that very reason.  It seemed sad that few States had permittage, and most of them were may issue.  Usually meaning unless you were one of the special few (or perhaps funds changed hands) you either did nor carry concealed, or did not carry concealed legally!

Now, here we are in the new century, and the tide has turned.  A significant number of States how have concealed weapon laws and some even passed Constitutional Carry – no permit needed!

Specifically, with the addition of Missouri, 11 States (22% of the 50!) no permit required!

41 States, and Guam(!)  now have some provision for shall issue permits! (Wikipedia)

Of course, we still have States like California (and New York), with their difficult to get may issue permits, and checkerboard of convoluted and restrictive gun laws.

And with the ever-present nonsense by the Statists equating gun ownership with terrorism.  (Hillary?)

BUT, things have definitely improved since the 1940’s, and in spite of warnings to the contrary regarding every CCW (carry concealed weapon) and Constitutional Carry law being passed, there has been no blood in the streets!
(It seems every time such legislation is suggested, the ANTI-RIGHTS folks trot out the same, tired meme.)

It’s been said that the American Revolution was started and maintained by just 3% of the population.  In spite of the ubiquitous onslaught of the anti rights control folks, we seem to be winning!

Hooray for the responsible, law-abiding citizens, going about their private business invoking their right to possible self-defense!

Now, if we could just reverse the rampant surveillance and searching without warrant!  I know, one Amendment at a time…

Sigh.

"Round up the usual suspects."

In Loving Memory…