Sunday, October 18, 2009

About Guns

There’s been several emails regarding guns and I’ll try to answer some of them here. I’m no expert, just my opinion, that’s all.

Hello Fernndo,

I just recently started reading your Blog and enjoy it very much. I think that there is a tremendous amount of useful advice there. As good as it is, I just finished reading your book, Surviving the Economic Collapse, and thought it was incredible. So much useful, practical information in such a readable book. I think you deserve a Nobel Peace Prize for creating something that has the potential to help save the lives of many thousands of people if they read it, take it to heart, and act on it...

That being said, your section on handguns states that you believe the Glock is the ultimate handgun. I think its a fine handun, but personally, I like the ergonomics of the Springfield XDM9 better. Have you tried these yet? If so, what are your thoughts?

Jerry in Florida...

Hi Jerry, thanks man. O beat me to it. Hell, I think I deserved it more than he did! :-)
I haven’t tried the XD. I hear about a lot of people that like it a lot, some doing very good in classes, even though the Glock is the most popular one and the one with the best reliability record.
The thing about the Glock, besides the well known design and many other characteristics that make it so successful is that its also so freaking popular. You can’t throw a dead cat without hitting a Glock.
Wherever you are around the globe, chances are you’ll find parts for one of these autos: 1911, Hi Power and Glock, CZ75 also being pretty popular, but in a much further away 4th place. I can find parts for my Glock ( and of course 1911 and Hi Power) here in Buenos Aires. I can’t say the same about the XD. Parts availability, mag availability and price, they are all important. Any gunsmith knows how to work with Glocks, even one that isn’t very experienced.
Finally, test of time. Maybe 20 years from now the XD will gain popularity, go through thousands of torture tests like the Glock did, be measured and found worthy, dropped from planes, buried, freezed and dragged from the car by a dozen guys and posting about it on the internet and still shooting. Time has passed and the Glock passed the test of time. It’s making its way up there to the hall of fame along with the JMB designs. 20 years from now the DX may gain such reputation, but then again the Glock will be legendary by then and you’d still want a Glock, maybe even more than you did before. :-)
Sorry for the rant. As far as I know the DX is one of the few guns that performs well on classes and such. If you like it and feel its ok for you, go for it man! Its not as if you’re asking about a Sigma or Taurus… :p

Thank you for a wonderful blog.

My firearms battery is pretty complete but after reading your advice on
pistols (which I have many), I thought that maybe a folding stock
shotgun would work well in an enclosed area like an automobile, and
using a pistol (in my case a Glock 23 in .40S&W) for backup. For home
defense I don't think shotguns can be beat.

What are your thoughts on short barrel folding stock shotguns, and if it
is favorable, do you prefer pump or semi-auto?



Hi Rob,
I like folding stocks because they make the guns much more handy and easier to conceal. Then again for some reason, I like my shotgun to have a nice, comfortable fixed stock, that can also hold a shell carrier. That being said, my Mossberg 500 has a short 14 inch barrel (Fed tax stamp required for that in USA, don’t try cutting your barrel)
For a car, I wouldn’t want a shotgun, no matter how small. I’d go for a High capacity 9mm loaded with FMJ if what you want if vehicle penetration, or big bore (40 S&W , 45 ACP) if you’re worried about carjackers on foot. Main problem with the shotgun is that it requires both hands to operate, and its still cumbersome. I want something small, that can be operated single handedly, penetrates metal well and has higher capacity than what most shotguns can offer.

I definitely want an auto pistol, not a shotgun for my car (when I’m the one driving, that is) If you’re talking about a trunk gun, then I’d rather have a FAL Para or AK.
Pump actions are more reliable, even though semi auto shotguns have been improved lately and some are doing nicely. There’s the Hatsan Escort semi auto, supposedly its very reliable with all kind of loads, all weights. Still, for me the shotgun’s main advantage is the ability to fire a wide range of loads, the LTL alternative being attractive in some niche situations. Otherwise, no doubt, I prefer the FAL Para and the 7,62 rifle round it fires.

pistol lights and laser-
Ferfal, in all your pics of handguns especially glocks, I never seen you have any cool attachments on them like: laser, light, reflex sight, red dot, and other tacticool gears. How usefull do you think those gadgets will be in real life ? Thanks. love your blog.


Hi, Sometimes people confuse sport with self defense. Then they end up dropping their firearm magazine every time they get in or out of the car because of the oversized mag release button, or effectively lock the slide back in the middle of a messy gunfight because of an absurd extended slide release. Super XL Ambidetrous & Amphibious 1911 safety? Just perfect to get it tangled on the clothes or accidentally pushing the huge safety down when sitting in the car.
A gun like the Glock needs little or no customization. Only thing worth doing, and it’s a good idea, is to replace the weak front sight post. The little plastic part is vulnerable and can’t take much punishment. For rifles and carbines yes, I have a red dot and something like and Aimpoint or Etech 550 would be nice to have in a good rifle, as long as you have backup iron sights and are proficient with those as well.
Weapon mounted lights for your auto are also a good idea, specially for home defense but also for carrying along with your sidearm.
I was shooting my Enfield the other day, open sights, 200 yards away. Wasn’t grouping very well but the guy next to me with his huge scope was amazed I could hit anything “without a scope” at that range.
Little life lesson: Never become too dependant of something made of glass. :-p



DannyHSDad said...

I own an Hatsan Escort semi-auto shotgun and had it for 3 years and I'm pleased with the performance so far. I can't say I've shot a lot with it but I've taken it for dove hunting and still seems to work fine.

Have you used semi-auto shotgun Saiga-12? By using AK actions, they should be very reliable shotguns. Several US companies are making 10 round magazines and even a 20 round drums.

Anonymous said...

Parts and magazine availability and number of gunsmiths knowledgeable about the gun are some things I had not considered before when determining which gun to purchase. I do so with cars, computers, and tools, but why I didn't with guns, I don't know. The Glock or Sig Saurer question is leaning more towards Glock when I look at it like that.

Have you ever had your gun break or fail on you? Have you ever had to replace a part on your Glock?

From what I've seen, the FAL is an expensive gun, one I may not have the extra cash to buy. I like my AK,... a lot. I'm thinking of getting a Siaga .308, the thought of a new gun in an AK design seems promising, especially because it is inexpensive. I wonder if the parts availability and such is the same with FAL and Siaga. That story of yours about the mob of pillaging people walking 20 yards from your house is spooky, an AK is somewhat comforting, two AK's might be more comforting eh?

Now if I can just get past the idea that buying a bullet proof vest is not a, “fringe” and paranoid thing to do. And then, should I get one for the wife, or is that taking things too far? Do you have one for your wife? If you can’t get your wife to wear one, I probably can’t get mine to wear one either.

EN said...

Nice blog. Your comments are very practical and appreciated. I own four XDs in .45, with barrel lengths in pairs. I much prefer them to the Glock but "commonality" is the reason I've kept one Glock 23 and my beloved 1911s. The XDs are good enough where my old series 70 Colt Commander is no longer my carry gun. Keeping a common, and reliable, weapon AND CALIBER is always a logical long term strategy. Here's hoping you keep writing. I've learned a lot and even changed some planning based on your very reasonable assessments.

Anonymous said...

Watch out for the Saiga shotguns as they can be temperamental with reduced recoil loads. The action will not cycle with these rounds.

In tough times, you may not be able to get the shells that the semi-auto shotgun requires. Go with a pump since you need two hands to hold it anyways. A good Remington 870 or Mossberg 500 will eat any ammo you put in it.


Anonymous said...

Seems like simpler is better to me: get a pump shotgun. They will devour anything. If you can find an old Winchester 1300, they will even feed the Aguilla mini-shells. The Saiga-12 is the meanest looking shotgun out there, but I don't think anyone is losing shotgun fights because they don't have a magazine fed autoloading shotty. Keep it simple, get a pump.