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This tag is associated with 14 posts

You Can’t Go Home Again

At least, I cannot…

I happened to be visiting a medical specialist near my old stomping grounds Friday last – where I  owned a home for eighteen years.

No, I didn’t drive by the old house.  Too many memories, besides, they completely fixed it up and changed it (I have been by before).

When I left the doctor’s office, I headed South to the next major artery.  This happened to be near John’s Uniforms and Police Equipment, previously recounted in these pages.  I worked there many moons ago as the de facto holster guy.

And it wasn’t there!

Rather something was there – Skaggs Public Safety Equipment and Uniforms.  I knew Johnny retired some years back, but had not known he sold the place!

An era has passed.  The ‘Green Machine’, used by John, Senior to manufacture western shirts and class A wool police uniforms (with sap pockets) for over forty years is obviously no longer in use.

And seeing this made me a little sad…

I didn’t drive West to observe Martin’s Uniforms (Johnny’s friendly enemy with whom they exchanged stock for many years) because I’d been by there a while back and saw it was now Ace Uniforms.  I don’t know (or particularly care) if Ace is still there.

Back when it was John’s versus Martin’s was the pre-Internet world.  And most other uniform emporia across the country were closed shops by the local police departments.

I have many fond memories of helping newly-minted cops in various varieties obtain uniforms, gear and holsters.  And listening to their ‘war stories’ around the communal store coffee pot.

But no longer.

The times.  They are a changin’.

In Search Of…

Old stuff!  (NO – not the 70’s TV series!)  😛

I’ve recently been blessed with the acquisition (or re-acquisition) of two firearms, as recounted in these pages – a first-year, original old frame style Ruger Security Six, and a Sig Sauer P245.

Both long out-of production and both ‘classics’ in their own right.

And both are fine to carry and shoot just as they are, but…

Like most gun folks, I cannot leave well enough alone!

Regarding the Ruger Security Six, she has the standard stocks.  When I was previously gun poor and carried her as a loaner (thanks again Dave the genius mechanic!) she was resplendent with a pair of Herrett Shooting Star checkered stocks.  Reportedly, these cracked beyond repair and have been discarded.

And Herrett no longer makes them for the original old frame.

Does anyone know where an old set might be acquired, or failing that, a similar style manufactured by some other manufacturer?

(Being an old-school gun guy just doesn’t get any easier?)

Now to the Sig Sauer P245.  Again no longer in production.  And the long-used night sites have faded to the brightness of the spark generated by breaking a Wint-O-Green Life Saver or white Necco Wafer in a dark closet.  Fortunately, when I can afford it, replacements ARE available.  (Although she does shoot quite well without any tritium, regardless!)

The ‘problem’ here is a decent IWB concealment holster.  Just like the Ruger, as they are no longer in production, finding accountrement for her is difficult.

AND, of course, I’m left-handed!

I like the idea of something straight-drop in Kydex, but at this point anything above a Fruit-Of-The-Loom, metal clip-on chamois pouch would suffice.

Anybody?  Bueller?  Bueller?ferris-bueller

Wishin’ And Hopin’

Being on minimal disability, I cannot afford to ‘do much’.

This is not a bleg for money (although your kind generosity IS appreciated), but rather an observation.  An expression of lust.

Regular readers know I’ve a beater car, that sometime runs w/o dashboard warning lights on.  Or not.  With no A/C.  In AZ.  I rent a room from a good friend, because I lost my home of 18 years due to my reduction in income on disability.

Yes, I’m fortunate and grateful!  Seriously.

And, the Internet and television are my portals to the outside world.  Women (did I say I’m single divorced?), guns, cars.  All for my viewing pleasure.

Only.

And I’m generally okay with this arrangement.

But today, something caught my attention.  No, not a vehicle.  Not a woman (surprised?)

But THIS:

texas-borde-special-colt-lightweight-commander-45ACP-Baranti-Tol-Dawson-holster-sheriff-jim-wilson-LO-600x450I’ve always wanted a Texas Border rig, such as this.  With an appropriate BBQ gun – I’m certain Sheriff Jim Wilson doesn’t want to part with his (above), though.

Of course, this is wrong-sided.

I’ve no place to wear it, anyway (would probably sell it to get the A/C in my car repaired!)

Sigh.

Miami Vice Redux?

I LOVE(D) MIAMI VICE! (the TV show – the later movie, not so much)

The girls, the guns, the music, the gritty (for then) plot lines.  Being a young married guy at the time, who was shooting I.P.S.C. on Thursday nights, Friday evening was just right for kicking back and imagining my suburban life rebooted as Sonny Crockett.

NBC program director Brandon Tartikoff had put out the request for a new show with the memo:  Give me MTV Cops!

I’d admired the lead actor Don Johnson since A Boy and his Dog, and the fact Michael Mann (the producer/creator who had done the film Thief) hired experts to show the actors proper gun handling and techniques made this TV show too cool.  The Galco custom holster, the Bren 10 pistol (used by Johnson one year, until they could no longer get magazines!), the ubiquitous Weaver stances, Jan Hammer’s music…

Now. Johnson (@ age 64) is himself envisioning a Miami Vice reboot!

The stubbled star talks about being showered with women’s underwear and why the Reagan-era series is ready for a reboot (Rolling Stone)

I loved the show, but, what are they going to call it – Geriatric Vice?

h/t Jerry the Geek

Hickey and Boggs, Anyone?

…or Hickey and BAGS?

ENDO muses regarding a CCW technique not for the faint-hearted – the plastic bag

shopping-bag-concealed-handgun-carry

People are used to seeing someone walk around with plastic grocery bags in their hands.  The same ubiquitous bag can be found in every corner of the world.  Carrying it draws no attention because it’s a common part of the scenery.  No one looks twice.

Well, maybe.

I remembered the Culp/Cosby film ‘Hickey and Boggs’, wherein Robert Culp (as Frank Boggs) totes around a large revolver in a locker room towel(!)

Now, in a pinch I’ve used a briefcase, a brown lunch sack or my waistband.  I’m uncertain as to the efficacy of the ubiquitous plastic grocery bag as concealment, however.

Not to mention, if discovered, possible charges of brandishing (gun-in-the-hand, and all)…

What do you guys think?

Weapon Retention

Jay G of MArooned tells us about the following…

Arizona police officer loses handgun during chase

The Tucson Police Department says one of its guns is missing.

Police say an officer who helped locate a purse-snatching and shoplifting suspect following a foot chase on the city’s west side Monday discovered that his service weapon had been dislodged from his holster.

I’m so old, I remember when LAPD had those nifty S&W 6″ Combat Masterpieces in a duty rig which were of clamshella clamshell design!  One placed one’s finger in the trigger guard (!), depressed a button, and the holster flew open, leaving the K-Frame revolver in your hand – finger on the trigger!

Of course, mechanical contrivances being as they are, more than one revolver was lost by a patrolman scurrying over a wall whilst in foot pursuit and inadvertently depressing the release button!  Weapon retention eventually evolved into high-ride duty holsters with steel linings, thumb snaps and specific presentation angles,  said holster being held in place on the Sam Browne belt by Chicago (tension) screws.

And, Aikido – Jiu Jitsu – like training simultaneously developed to teach officers how to maintain control and possession of their weapons during physical encounters with suspects interested in obtaining their own control.

Civilian training?  SOME is out there.  Of course, making certain no miscreant even sees you have a gun until it’s leveled at him is a good idea, too.

I do remember one time when I was a security guard/graveyard shift in an urgent care facility, when an accident victim and his entourage arrived.  They were all drunk.

And I was escorting them to the even more crowded clinic when I felt a firm tug on my sidearm!  Reflexively, I used my elbow to pin the hand to the stocks, and rapidly turned and stepped away, to break the offending wrist or hand.  The guy yelled, let go and complained I’d tried to hurt him.  Then he explained he “just wanted to see what I had”!  He was drunk, of course.  I kept my cool and told him forcefully if he wanted to stay in the clinic with his friend he’d keep his hands to himself.  He complied.

I’ve never had any problem of this nature carrying concealed.  Perhaps there’s a message here?

I can’t speak for you, but, I’m no Bruce Lee.

Hell, I’m not even Pinky Lee!

pinky(Yes.  I know.  I’m old…)

RETAIN AND CONTROL YOUR WEAPONS AND ACCESS, PEOPLE!

Leather Dreams

So, I’m working in a large Costco-style store, just to the right of the main door, where people usually walk by to the 55 gallon drums of Cheetos, SELLING HOLSTERS!

And they are displayed much like at the big gun shows, on heavy vertical frames consisting of black wire rectangles.  And, not being used to standing on my feet any longer, I’m taking a break, on the nearby park bench (?) within earshot of the holster sales area.

And two of my co-workers are alleged to be covering for me.

A customer appears, resembling one of the Orange Gunsite instructors I know, a retired AZDPS guy.  He’s looking at the holsters, in particular a soft tan chamois number, with multiple belt snaps, including one right in the middle of the top(?)

It’s made by Bianchi (say BEE-YANKEE) and resembles a rough-out leather 5-cigar case with snaps and straps at one end.  I’ve no idea what model of pistol it is for.

And my relievers are no where to be found – and I’m tired and in pain.

But, duty calls, and I go to the customer just before he leaves, miffed.

And he explains he usually just cuts off the weird center strap, for no particular reason.

THEN I WAKE UP!

I swear, I only had ONE 12 year old single-malt Scotch last night!  (with, of course, two squares of dark chocolate) !  What’s up with this dream?

FTC – this was just a dream.  Neither Costco or Bianchi gave me anything!  And I bought the Scotch and chocolate myself – with help from a friend!)

To Keep My Pants Up!

wilderness beltWhen the Balloon Goes Up just posted an excellent article regarding an oft forgotten part of a gunnie’s equipment – their belt.

I’ve seen experienced shooters with $100+ concealment rigs hanging from to a $9.95 cardboard 3/4″ belt from WalMart. Not a good idea.  I had a belt break once.  Kinda ruins the whole discrete, concealed thing.

My daily go-to belt is a Wilderness belt.  So much so that I’ve 5 or 6 of them, in assorted sizes, as my weight has gone up and down over the years.  My only caveat might be if carrying in a designated ‘no guns allowed’ area, it might be a ‘tell’ to the authorities.  ‘Course, they might decide your are an ‘only one’, and let you slide.

(Not that that’s ever happened to ME!)

For dressier (business) wear, I’ve a thick, dense, leather dress belt with a heavy nickeled brass buckle. Thankfully, I don’t have to dress-up much, anymore.  While I LOVE my Wilderness belts, they don’t work as well with dress slacks!

attn FTC – I bought all of my belts, holsters and assorted gear from Ralph (The Wilderness) Holzhaus, with the exception of those bought elsewhere!  Now go away.

Memories of Roberta

flashbangjpg

Click for holster info

No, the above photo isn’t she.  She was, uh, more endowed. (and a redhead). And while she was known to carry a concealed weapon, it usually wasn’t a .38 snub.  It was one of those truncated Kimber .45s, in a belly-band, right below the, uh, area pictured above.  Presentation was ‘between’.

This takes me back to the book Stopping Power, wherein  Marshall and Sanow present numerous examples of police and civilians utilizing firearms against assailants.  In teaching my students, I used to refer to the book as ‘bedtime stories’.  One story had a female sheriff’s deputy rushing to exit the women’s room to back up her partner, going into full-on-Weaver, and engaging the threat.  Without having properly fastened her pants.  The back up cops told her doing so was a helluva diversion!

Obviously, the woman above (or Roberta) would have accomplished the same thing.

Hey, I’m all about women carrying, and carrying something effective and discrete.  The presentation may lose some discretion, but, so be it!

And I saw this photo on a couple other blogs and thought, “Hey, Roberta!  And Rule Five.”

FTC – neither Flashbang, Kimber, Marshall nor Sanow gave me anything.  Roberta did for a few years, then we parted company.  No money changed hands.

h/t From The Caer, Breitbart

The Sign of The Cross

crossNO, this isn’t a critique of old movies, or of the Catholic Church.

It’s a comment on unsafe pistol presentation.

First we had TV and the movies borrowing an Israeli technique of holding the pistol sideways (and adopted by gangstas and the great unwashed, nationwide), which is finally losing it’s appeal – now, everyone in Hollywood seems to be using the cavalry presentation, with and without holsters (!)

When done properly, it can be done in relative safety.  But it’s slow, and, at least on TV is rarely done correctly.

cav2

And, it doesn’t help when well-known holster manufacturers reinforce poor technique, in an effort to push more leather.

cav

The point being, unless one draws correctly, one crosses oneself with the muzzle.  And class, we all know that violates which Rule?  (if not, see the right sidebar).

AND, with the advent of smaller and shorter pistols in better calibers, even using a standard strong-side presentation into Weaver or Isosceles could have the student preparing to shoot themselves in the weak hand, making it even weaker.

DON’T cross yourself!  Remember the Four Rules.

"Round up the usual suspects."

In Loving Memory…