Blogging to you from the northeastern badlands of Lake County, Illinois USA, WELCOME TO THE NEXT CHAPTER! WARNING! WARNING! WARNING! ALL FORMS OF SOCIAL MEDIA ARE ADDICTIVE; EXCESSIVE USE MAY LEAD TO MENTAL HEALTH DISORDERS, REDUCED PRODUCTIVITY, LACK OF SLEEP, SOCIAL ALIENATION, BIRTH DEFECTS, BLINDNESS, SEXUAL IMPOTENCY, AND / OR DEVIANT FUNAMBULISM. NOTICE: NO GUNS OR AMMUNITION ARE FOR SALE VIA THIS BLOG. No, I will not trade my Colt Python for some erotic adventures with your hot looking wife and a future first-round draft pick. CAVEAT: This blog is not suitable for viewing while at work, while inside a public library, while inside any public or private school, or while inside any public or private restroom. Do not view this blog while driving a motor vehicle or while piloting an aircraft. Viewing this blog may be illegal inside the EU, Chicago, and other parts of the Third World. THIS BLOG CONTAINS (albeit often very childish) ADULT-CONTENT. DISCLAIMER: This blog is a hobby, it is not a livelihood. Even though much of what I blog about relates to firearms collecting and recreational shooting, I am not an expert (by any measure) on any facet of guns, shooting, hunting, or personal defense. Entries at this blog are akin to good old-fashioned campfire chats or post hunt bourbon-fueled barroom-bluster; I offer no opinion on what you should or should not purchase, or what you should be using or doing. What does or does not work for me could be rugged-country-miles away from your tastes and your needs. All products, places, and miscellany that I review for this blog are purchased / rented / leased at retail price by me. I do not accept payment, gifts, discounts, freebies, products on loan, demon alcohol, drugs, plea-bargains, probation, parole, Papal Blessings, Presidential Pardons, or sexual favors for doing any review or blog post. TRACKING COOKIES: Google et al stick tracking cookies on everybody. If you are online, you are being spied on via one method or another, for one reason or another; 'nuff said. You may be able to minimize your online DNA residue by using Tor and Duck Duck Go. Vive la liberté! Vive all y'all! Ante omnia armari. To each of you, thanks for stopping by! I appreciate it!
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'We the Politicians of the United States, in Order to avoid a more perfect Union, manipulate Justice, destroy domestic Tranquillity, provide for the common offense, promote general Warfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty for ourselves and our Progeny, do blaspheme and eviscerate this Constitution of the United States of America." ("Zack," circa 1966 -1970)

Saturday, June 29, 2019

Monthly Weigh-in 06/29/2019 = UNCHANGED at 180-lbs

This is a monthly reminder to myself to "keep at it."  Not losing anything since last month is not a surprise.  Not gaining any weight is always a win.

Somewhat of a surprise was when I saw some waist-size-33 jeans for sale ... I can remember going directly from size-32 to size-34 many years ago because I found nothing in between.  Anyhow,  I figured I could fit into the size-33 comfortably enough so I made the purchase ... the big surprise is that I also fit into the size-32 that I bought out of sheer optimism.   I later tried on some ancient size-32 jeans that I had kept from the previous century ... they also fit.  Whoopee!  The game of ounces and inches is glacially slow and boring but the "Eureka!" moments are fun.

Although the size-34 jeans are a bit baggy on me nowadays I am going to continue wearing them until I am at 175-lbs or below; old geezers always gots to get their money's worth!

Friday, June 28, 2019

UPDATE: Lake County Sheriff investigation finds NO THREATS WERE MADE regarding Lake County, Illinois Civil War Re-enactment (KUDOS to the Sheriff's Office for getting on this promptly and putting it all to bed)

It would appear that this was nothing more than our local politicians showing off their talents for opportunism, obfuscation, and mendaciousness ...  all the while stopping just short of qualifying for a Jussie Smollett award.  Good job, guys!  Well played.

Thursday, June 27, 2019

Threats get Civil War Re-enactment CANCELED in Lake County, Illinois

A criminal investigation is underway (IMHO, something we need more when it comes to threats of violence).  It is unclear what the threats were about.  Dunno if the threats were from the left, from the right, or from a broad political spectrum.  I remember reading some official as saying that the re-enactments were "racist" but I won't link to that post because it doesn't contain the full content or context of what was being discussed.   

The re-enactments have been going on for many years.  There was some talk about this being the last year for them for whatever reason.  Everything on this earth offends someone or another nowadays.  C'est dommage.  C'est la vie.  Breathe in, breathe out, move on.

Tuesday, June 25, 2019

Federal's Syntech .45 acp ammunition is now here in the wilds of Northeastern Illinois (but it has not yet been subjected to a Colt Defender shooting-range-shakedown session).

Lessee what we have in the (above) photo ... 200-rounds of Syntech red-ball range fodder plus the 100-rounds of Syntech blue-nose personal defense stuff plus 6-rounds of regular FMJ ball equals a bit over some / many / all of the federal, state, and local ammunition limits being proposed.  Golly ... gosh ... gee whiz ... I guess that I had better get busy and shoot more often and much faster than I have been ... thus far this year I have only burned through 442-rounds of what I already had in inventory; in many gun circles that amount of shooting would get me tagged me as a lightweight Fudd.  I'm serious; the amount of ammo that I burn in a full year is what many serious gunslingers toss downrange a couple or more times every week.

Silly ammo-limit laws solve nothing ... unless the hidden intent of is to fastrack criminalization of innocent gun owners.

How many rounds of ammunition do I have cached?  Meh, maybe only a few more than shown in the photo below ... modesty keeps me from posting a full count.   Am I a notorious liar?  Well, yeah, kinda, but no more so than any given major party politician.  Truth be told, I don't own any guns ... I just make this shit up as blog fodder.

Guns are evil.  Guns are bad.  Ban guns.  Ban boolits.  Ooorah!  Happy?  Good, now go home and let the adults continue.


Typical (dare I say "traditional?") copper full metal jacket 230-grain ball is on the left, Syntech 230-grain ball is on the right, and Syntech 205-grain segmented hollowpoint is in the middle.  "How good doz dey choot?"  Dunno yet ... I hope to get it to the range soon.  Is Federal's synthetic jacket softer than copper?  Well, I am going to assume that it is.  I am also assuming that it MAY be easier on aluminum feed ramps.

NOTE: Nothing that I can do here would meet any measure of being "SCIENCE."  It would require serious effort and resources for anyone to conclusively say that (compared to copper jacketed bullets) use of Syntech ammo in pistols with aluminum alloy feed ramps A) Makes no difference   B) Causes less wear and tear  C) Causes more wear and tear.  This isn't as easy as climate science.


Above is a photo (and an enlargement) showing a bit of the feed ramp of my 1998 vintage Colt Defender shortly after I purchased it a few years ago.  It was a used gun so I dunno if that shiny ramp came from the factory in that condition or if some well intentioned previous owner or gun store clerk wannabe gunsmith thought that polishing it would improve feed reliability.  Folks, I may be in the minority but it is my opinion that only factory employed smiths (or an exceptionally experienced independent smith) should be messing with a feed ramp, be it anodized aluminum, titanium, steel, integral to the frame of the pistol or on ramped barrels.  Angles and hardness are kinda critical.  IMHO (again), feed problems usually can be traced to A) magazines B) extractors C) problematic ammo design.

In short, it is possible that, at sometime between this pistol's 1998 DOB and the date when I purchased it, some or all of the anodized hardening was polished from the feed ramp.  If it was, the pistol is now down to the question of how hard (or soft) copper jackets are versus how soft (or hard) the aluminum alloy pistol frame is.

I stripped, cleaned, inspected and lubed the pistol when I first purchased it.  I set aside the pair of factory magazines and replaced them with a different brand.

6-rounds of hollowpoint ammunition were fired on this outing (click HERE)

57-rounds of ball ammunition were fired during this outing (click HERE).

I again stripped, cleaned, inspected and lubed the pistol.


The feed cycle of semi-automatic pistols is more chaotic than most would imagine.  Computer animations depict it as a smooth chain of events.  The reality is that ammo hits feed ramps high and low, sometimes a bit left or right.  Feed ramps soak up lots of abuse.

My method for cleaning a feed ramp is via CLP on a soft cloth patch; that's it.  This photo pretty much has me convinced (it is ever possible for me to be mistaken) that somewhere along the line somebody polished the anodizing from the feed ramp, which is why I am hoping that synthetic jacketed bullets will minimize wear and tear.  I plan to shoot the living hell outta this pistol regardless; it is a gun that is still full of fun.

Wednesday, June 19, 2019

Well, all right then! If you sass Mommy Gubmint again she is gonna take your guns away and THAT'S FINAL!

I love Illinois politicians.  They never fail to amuse ... this one even has the lawyers in stitches.  

All of you closeted gun-owning liberals might want to rethink your blind party-allegiance.  Just sayin'.

As for myself, I am plotting my exit strategy from this state ... call it "Escape from Mikemadiganistan."   Illinois is morally, intellectually, and financially bankrupt beyond hope.

Wednesday, June 5, 2019

.45 ACP Colt Defender Range Session 06/03/2019 at 5 Star Firearms in Zion, Illinois

This was my 6th 7th range visit for this year; averaging around once a month is the best that I can do with everything else that competes for attention.  My previous range session was on the 10th of last month and that was for my required CCL re-qualification class.  

This range session was a "me" thing;  I went shooting just for the fun of it.  This was my first full range shakedown of this pistol; it is an impulse-purchase hobby-gun.  

8 magazines were used during this session (all new, all Wilson's)
2 x 8-round magazines
4 x 7-round magazines
2 x 6-round magazines


 30-feet was the farthest distance that I wanted to deal with during this session.
2 x 8-round mags were fired at the obligatory flesh eating space alien silhouette.


The 2nd sheet was set at 21-feet.  The blue section of each target measure just a bit under 7-inches in diameter.  Shooting began with the lower right hand target.   A 7-round magazine was used on each of the quad of lower targets; each of the top pair of targets received perforations from ammo fed from the 6-round magazines at the grand finale of this session.


Of the 57-rounds of ball ammo that were fired during this range session there was a pair of feed-jams that occurred, one each from a pair of the 7-round capacity magazines; that is not encouraging.

There also was a squib round that did clear the barrel but it did not cycle the slide and eject the case (that's an ammo issue, not a gun issue or a mag issue).

I am of the opinion (be it ever so humble) that this model (and the original Colt Officers Model from which it evolved) has the best functional potential when used with 6-round magazines and ball ammunition.  The flush fit 7-round magazines and the extended 8-round magazines compound the potential for problems with this somewhat edgy pistol design; face it folks, shrinkifying a pistol with a 5'' barrel down to a pistol with a 3'' barrel isn't an engineering task that is free of complications.   

I suspect that a new extractor and the exclusive use of high quality 6-round magazines would make this particular pistol (i.e., the one I own) reliable enough for use with (some) personal defense hollowpoint ammunition.

Overall, I'd say that Colt's poor man's version of Bill Laughridge's Adventurer design is pretty darn good for a mass production pistol.  Visually speaking, the sights are quick and easy to pick up; aesthetically, the sights look (to me) to be too big for the pistol (yeah, I have a strange sense of fashion).  The Larry Seecamp designed recoil springs apparently soaked up most of the recoil that I had expected the .45 ACP to pulse through the pistol's light aluminum frame; my arthritic hands appreciatively give it two gnarly thumbs up!  It is sweet and easy to control.  Without a doubt in my mind, this 3'' Colt Defender is far better than the 3.5'' Colt Officers Model that I owned (and eventually gave up on and sold) many years ago.

Sunday, June 2, 2019

The plantings on the front patio flower-wall are finished, provided that our typical northern Illinois springtime weather doesn't freeze, drown, or cook everything.

 Now we just have to wait for everything to grow and flower.

Left half of the wall.

 Right half of the wall.

It's been a tough spring for the flowers.  I decided to limit the variety to petunias, snapdragons, and moss roses. The 'dragons have suffered the most.

How wet has it been?  Just the typical Lake County, Illinois springtime wetness.   One of my springtime traditions is ending; this will be the final time that I use my lawn-tractor to pull my neighbor's lawn-tractor out of the mire ... he is moving at the end of next week ... oppressive state and local taxes, doncha know ...


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