Thursday, March 31, 2011

Stevens Model .22 .410 combo gun with Tenite forend and stock


Look what followed me home from the gun store the other day, a Stevens Model .22 .410 with Tenite forend and stock. CLICK HERE to read the post by The Fishing Musician that inspired me to buy this old gun. In my book, the superposed .22 long rifle / .410 shotgun combo gun is one of America’s greatest utility firearms of all time. My Dad had one just like this one during his early days in Eastern Tennessee; it was his first gun. I am lucky enough to enjoy hunting as a sport; during his youth, my Dad hunted out of necessity. Small game hunting with guns like this was salvation for many folks during hard times; these guns provided meat for the dinner table. Ammo was an expensive commodity for poor country folks so the standing rule was “one shot, one meal.” Instead of expending a second round, Dad once climbed a tree to recover a wounded squirrel; it viciously locked its teeth into his thumb while he proceeded to choke it to death while balancing precariously on a tree branch high off the ground. Yeah, survival hunting is a much more serious affair than is hunting for sport.

When I saw this old gun on the store rack, a somewhat silly sentiment told me that I had to have it in order to complete a connection to my past. When I was young, I used to sneak Dad’s old combo gun out so I could go hunting in the local woods. I know that my older brother will also get a kick out of seeing this gun; he too speaks fondly of “Dad’s old .410.” I remember Dad’s gun being in very rugged shape; the sights were missing, as was the plug for the Tenite stock and there was absolutely no sign of bluing left on the scarred metal; it had seen some hard use on some rocky trails. Dad’s gun was gone long before Dad passed away. The memories of both are still strong. This gun one will act as a surrogate for me; it will be my foster “Dad’s gun.” Honor thy Father.



As you can see in the photo, the major “weak link” on the Stevens Model .22 .410 is the barrel selector (mine is missing the button and screw). One major problem is the screw coming loose and the selector button falling off while afield, lost forever in the leaves or tall grass. Further, the selector link itself is not durable and eventually it will break. If I were to use this gun as my sole survival tool, I would have a gunsmith convert it to the newer Savage design with the barrel selector on the hammer. Since this gun is nothing but a sentimental purchase that will only see rare nostalgic bunny, bird, and squirrel hunts, I will repair it with original parts. The selector link on mine looks intact; when the button and screw that I ordered from Numrich arrive, I will attempt to fix the gun myself. Failing that, the old gun will take a trip to a competent gunsmith.


The Savage Arms Company bought the Stevens Arms Company in 1920. All Stevens Model .22 .410s were manufactured between 1939 and 1950 and have no serial numbers, some with wood stocks and forends, some with Tenite. According to this site, the U.S. Army Air Force adopted the Tenite-stocked Stevens .22/.410 over-under combination gun as its first "survival gun" with an order for 15,000 of them. After 1950, Savage put its name on the gun and designated it as the Model 24. Sadly, Savage discontinued manufacturing; if you want one, you are at the mercy of the used gun racks and the availability of spare parts. CLICK HERE to visit the UK .410 site for more information on these great old guns.


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Sunday, March 27, 2011

It has been hard for me to get into my springtime groove



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Other than when I was shoveling snow, so far this year I have only had a few days when I did my self-imposed daily minimum of two hours of outside work. The biggest reason for this is my overpowering congenital laziness, but wearing the hats of husband, father, and grandfather also have kept me busy.

For the most part, the months of November, December, January, February, March, and April are months without flowers in northern Illinois.; six very depressing, cold, dreary months. It is a wonder that anyone remains sane. I’d have to say that the perfect mix of seasons for me would be in eastern Tennessee. It would be poetic for me to finish my days in the area where my parents started theirs. It would be nice to get an extra month or two of growing season... and to get away from these gosh darned Illinois taxes.

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Thursday, March 24, 2011

Yesterday was haircut day



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I probably should check out my looks in the mirror more often. My last haircut was just under 6-months ago and I did not realize that I was fully into having the unfriendly appearance of a werewolf until last Saturday when my daughter, my granddaughter, and I went to the neighborhood park. As soon as we walked in, EVERY parent grabbed his or her kids and left in a hurry.

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Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Central United States Earthquake Consortium (CUSEC) Great Central USA ShakeOut April 28, 2011

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Over one million people are expected to participate in the Great Central U.S. ShakeOut to be held at 10:15 a.m. on April 28, 2011 (April 19 in Indiana) — a regional earthquake drill where participants will simultaneously practice recommended actions.

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Organically flavored Marijuana

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Some enterprising smugglers tried to fish bales of pot through the sewers from Mexico to Nogales, Arizona and accidentally plugged things up.

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Thursday, March 17, 2011

Dōmo arigatō misutā Robotto

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The unquestionable raw courage of the Japanese workers may not be enough. Unmanned vehicles and robots are being sought by the IAEA for use at the Fukushima nuclear power station. It will be most interesting to see what the minds of man will create for use in bringing the fuel in the nuclear reactors and storage pools under control… and for cleaning up the site.

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Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Hard Times Investing Update 3/16/2011

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Many pundits are blathering that it is time to “buy the bad news,” waving their buy recommendations for ETFs covering Japan.

I’m game, but not anywhere near current prices. EWJ looks attractive to me only at or below $8.00 and JOF at or below $6.00, and I would only do one or two round lots of each. The Japanese people will overcome this series of tragedies, but hard times will be their norm for quite some time.

DISCLAIMER: This blog entry is NOT financial advice, or a recommendation to buy any stock or sector.

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Rethinking worst-case scenarios

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I wonder if we have finally learned never to say, “That can never happen.”

My optimistic side believes that we learn from our failures; my pessimistic side believes that we ignore them.

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Sunday, March 13, 2011

Millions of Japanese are without food, water, and electricity.

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Government emergency services are overwhelmed. Shelters are full and without power. Stores and fuel stations are closed. “Bugging out” is not working well; roads are jammed with traffic and cars are running out of fuel.

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Thursday, March 10, 2011

Tornado Season 2011

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Without much warning, Mother Nature can huff, puff, and blow your entire town all the way over into the next county. Tornadoes are downright devastating when they hit populated areas. While they can occur at any time of the year, springtime is the beginning of the peak tornado season. Daddy Bear and his family take tornado warnings very seriously and have a well-rehearsed plan.

Even if your house is left standing, a tornado can leave you without electricity and potable water for many days. Police may prevent you from leaving or entering your area. If you need help setting up your contingency plans, CLICK HERE.

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Saturday, March 5, 2011

Bellum omnium contra omnes; the war of all against all

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IMHO, that pretty much says it all. Before and since the publication of Leviathan 360 years ago, “the sovereign” has not worked in any form, anywhere on earth. Power corrupts.

People have very limited choices on who shall govern. Choose wisely.

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Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Illinois State Police to release names of all FOID card holders to the Associated Press

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CLICK HERE if you wish to read the whole story.

CLICK HERE if you are interested in the reactions of a couple of State Senators.

A great number of otherwise law abiding Illinois gun owners do NOT have FOID cards, which technically makes them Class 4 Felons. Most of them argue that they do not want to be on any government list. Well, I guess I owe all of you non-FOID guys and gals an apology; you were right and the rest of us were wrong. Governments cannot be trusted.

As for those who do hold Illinois FOID cards, you may want to review your personal and home security arrangements, your voting history, and consider joining the Second Amendment Foundation, the Illinois State Rifle Association, and the National Rifle Association. As for those who do not vote or who do not belong to any gun rights groups, you can consider this another kiss.

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