Weekend Reading: New Colt Cobra Review

GunsAmerica posted a review of the new Colt Cobra a little while back and I have been meaning to share it with you:

Ready to Strike: The New .38 Special Colt Cobra – Full Review

It also includes a video version of the review if you prefer watching over reading:

While I really don’t think this should be called a Cobra, I am very excited for another player to be (back) in the revolver market. I also hope to be able to fondle one before too long. If money allows, I would like to add it to my collection because…well…I just want one.

God bless!

Update: ETS Glock 43 Magazines

The the Range Report I posted last month (link) I shared my initial thoughts on the Glock 43 magazines from ETS.

The main selling point, for me, on these magazines is that they are designed to have a seven round capacity while still fitting flush in the firearm. At the range I was unable to fit seven rounds into either of the magazines. A quick call to ETS’ customer support line (very nice folks by the way) resulted in a suggestion to load the magazines and let them sit for a week or so. This would “loosen up” the springs an allow them to be loaded with the extra round.

As you can see, it worked.

I am now able to load the magazines to their advertised capacity.

However…

The spring is now 100%, fully compressed. There is no more give AT ALL. So inserting a fully loaded magazine into the firearm requires some serious brute force and effort. Once inserted that same pressure is now applied to the inner workings of the firearm. I think there is a strong possibility that the pressure and resulting drag on slide operation could cause feeding issues. I have not tested it at the range yet so maybe with the energy of a full powered self-defense cartridge working the action it won’t be an issue. We will see.

I can see this possibly being a good choice for a “spare” magazine. Loading the magazine on seven rounds while the slide is locked open no problem and once the pressure of that seventh round is relieved the magazine should operate normally. Despite the extra pressure on the top round is seem to feed fairly easily and properly.

For the moment these will not be in my carry rotation. Until and unless I can get a lot more comfortable with their reliability I will continue to depend on my tried and true six round magazines.

God bless.

Range Report

For Father’s Day I ordered myself a new Spike’s Tactical lower receiver. It is for a new build that I am planning and has an image engraved that I particularly liked:

Well, the lower finally came in and I was eager to pick it up. Wonderful Wife suggested I get some range time in too. I sure do love that woman but I suspect it may have had more to do with her wanting to go shopping for the grand kids than me getting some time on the range. Regardless of the motivation behind it I was eager to get back to the range especially after the challenges I had last time out.

First and most importantly, whatever was affecting my shooting last time out seems to have been resolved. No idea what was causing my inaccuracy last time out but I was able to tear the “X” ring out of targets at 3 and 7 yards pretty easily. It was obvious that I still need to get back to practicing more regularly but I was back on track with both the Glocks and the revolvers.

My secondary goal for this range trip was to test out the new ETS magazines for the Glock 42 and 43. I loaded the Glock 42 magazine first and immediately had issues. Two or three malfunctions per magazine. I repeated the test and got the same results. As a test I tried one of the Glock factory magazines I had with me and although it seemed slightly more reliable I still had issues. I only brought one box of .380 (Sellier & Bellot FMJ) but I did have a full magazine of my carry ammo for the G42 (Hornady Critical Defense) which seemed to run fine. This is probably an ammo related issue but until I can bring some different ammo to the range and test it out the G42 goes back in the safe.

Short Revolver Rant

This is one of the things that I truly appreciate about carrying a revolver. I know revolvers can fail and when they do it is rarely something that can be fixed in the middle of a fight but with a revolver I don’t have to worry about magazines failing or wearing out, ammo that doesn’t feed right, or weak extractor springs or any of the other small parts that can affect the reliability of a semi-auto. Semi-Autos are pretty darn reliable these days when it comes to feeding and extracting but they are still not as reliable or worry/hassle free as revolvers when it comes to feeding and extraction.

So, it appears the issue with the feeding on the Glock 42 was not related to the ETS magazines. The G43 (9mm) magazines from ETS all seemed to perform well and none had issues with and feeding or extraction issues. They all dropped free when empty. However, the big selling point for me on these magazines was that they are advertised as carrying an extra round in flush fit magazines. For whatever reason I could not seem to be able to get that extra round in there. Here is a photo of the 12 round magazine loaded up but only holding 11 rounds:

It is possible that after the springs wear in a bit I will be able to load the extra round but in the meantime, other than cost, I don’t see any reason to use these magazines instead of Glock factory magazines.

All in all, it was a really good day at the range.

God bless.

Note: I did call ETS support and they suggested loading and unloading the magazines a few times or leaving one loaded for a week or two and then trying again…

 

Putting The Revolvers Down For A Bit

In the last range report I posted, I mentioned how poor my performance was with both the Smith & Wesson 442 and the Ruger LCR. My accuracy was definitely not what it should be and I feel that deficiency could cost me or a loved one our life in a self-defense situation.

The issue is not related to the firearms themselves or the ammunition. It is either that I haven’t spent as much time practicing as I should (most likely) or the trouble I have been having with my shoulder and elbow are impacting accuracy. I am hoping that with a little more range time I can get back to where I think I need to be but

In the meantime I have put my snubbie’s away and will carry my Glocks instead. The lighter trigger, better sights and reduced recoil of the Glocks will help my accuracy and the extra couple of rounds provide a little insurance for my (temporarily) reduced skill set. The G42 is almost as light as the snubbies and will take over as my daily carry while I am working from my home office. I am not a big fan of .380 for self-defense but the G43 is a very soft shooter and should get the job done with seven rounds on tap. It will ride in my pocket when working from home where I am literally within arms reach of my gun safe.

I have also been known to carry a snubbie when heading out on quick trips around the neighborhood but until I sort out my accuracy issues with the snubbies the G43 will get the nod on all trips out of the house for a while.

God Bless

What Did You Prep This Week?

Walk With God

Made it back to Sunday school this week which was a positive. On the down side I really didn’t spend much time at all in prayer or studying the Bible.

Self Defense/Hunting

A few weeks back I bought a “Tactical Pen” to carry in non-permissive environments. While on my way to board a plane for a business trip last week I discovered that I had left it in my other bag by mistake. So, as I went from meeting to meeting in and around New Orleans (one of my least favorite places to be disarmed) I basically had nothing to defend myself with. To make sure this didn’t happen again I went ahead and purchased another “TactiPen” so I can have one in each bag and won’t end up in quite that situation again.

Tactipen!

ETS has been getting a lot of press lately for their magazines and a buddy told me that they had released a line of magazines for the Glock 42 and 43. They are polymer magazines and offer an extra round of capacity over the standard Glock magazines. They also have a +6 magazine that is most definitely not flush fitting but I had to order one anyway! I decided to go ahead and try one of their AR magazines too since I was already placing an order.

I de-primed and cleaned the brass from my last range session. I like to have the brass prepped and ready to go then I can reload it when I get around to it and the brass is ready to go.

Supplies/Gear

When we started our little garden last year I decided to use stakes for growing tomatoes. They seem to work reasonably well on varieties of tomatoes that don’e grow too tall and produce fairly small fruit like cherry tomatoes. For the larger plants and varieties we are growing this year they don’t seem to work all that well so I broke down and purchased the wire cages for all my tomato plants and even a few of my pepper plants. Wonderful Wife had already done so on her one tomato plant that she has on the back porch and it has worked well for her so, hopefully, this will help the plants in the garden produce better and be a little more hardy as well.

With hurricane season kicking in we rotated food out of the emergency pantry and into the regular pantry and then put a list together to replenish what we need.

We received another shipment of freeze dried foods this month and I have been very pleased so far…I really need to do a post on it….

Finances

No activity this week.

Fitness/Health

Like my walk with God I have done very little this week to improve my physical health. In fact, it has been more the opposite. I haven’t exercised all week and only stretched a couple of times. I have been eating tons of junk food and drinking lots of soda…

That’s it for me. That’s what I prepped this week. How about you? What did you Prep this week?

God Bless

Range Report

I finally had a chance to make it out for a much needed trip to the range last weekend. I wanted to sight in the new Ruger American Predator .308 my home defense AR and get some practice time with my handguns. For the most part I accomplished my goals although not quite in the way I had hoped. First, a lesson learned.

Test Your Gear

I say this all the time and try and live by it as much as possible but received a refresher in the lesson this weekend. Working with my home defense AR, the one that sits in the safe next to my desk all day was one of my top two priorities. I had used a laser bore sight on it to set up the red dot optic a month or so ago but had not had a chance to verify the zero on the range. I bore sight rifles all the time but never have I been this far off. At only 25 yards, the point of impact was almost two feet off to the right! Within my house I don’t have many shooting angles at this distance but the point still remains that had I needed this rifle in the last few weeks I would have been in real trouble…to say the least.

I typically have a light mounted on all my home defense weapons, both pistols and rifles. I have had a habit of removing them when I go to the range. Doing so make it easier to pack them into their cases for travel and I feel kid of silly with a light on my gun in the bright sunlight of an open range. Most of the lights mount straight onto the picatinny rail but this new rifle has MLOK attachments on and I used the MLOK to attack a small rail and then mounted the light  to the rail.  Three shots into the range session the rail piece dropped off the rifle. Either the MLOK wasn’t properly secured (likely since this is my first experience with it) or the mounting hardware is flawed. I won’t know until I make it back out to the range and test it…again.

In the meantime I am a little wary of using this rifle for self-defense.

Other Observations

I purchased a “lead sled’ from Caldwell to make sighting in rifles easier (and cheaper but consuming less ammo). Maybe I am doing something wrong but so far I am not all that impressed. I don’t think it saved me more than a couple of rounds in the whole process. I can do just as well with sandbags…

On the other hand I am pretty dawn happy with the little Ruger .308 bolt gun. It took me about four rounds to get it dialed in at the twenty five yard line and then I was able to put two rounds into the same hole in the bullseye. Even at only 25 yards that’s pretty good shooting for me (I am not much of a rifleman).

I prefer to work a bit more methodically and go from 25 to 50 to 100 yards when sighting in a new rifle but the 50 yard line was under construction so I went straight out to 100.Using the lead sled I was all over the paper. It appeared to be more of a pattern than a group. Finally I dropped the lead sled and went with plan old sandbags. I still wasn’t getting a consistent grouping but at least the pattern tightened up. The four shots 2 inches down and one to the left were all off sandbags. I adjusted the scope a bit and put the last one in the bullseye. It was a hot day and getting hotter and my blood sugar was starting to tank so at that point I called it a day with the Ruger.

As I said, my initial observations on the Ruger American Predator in .308 are pretty good. From what I can tell this rifle is probably more accurate than I am. It is lightweight, about 6 lbs without the scope, and handy with an 18 inch barrel and an overall length of 38 inches. So, it should be an easy gun to drag through the brush but still more than accurate enough to reach out from a stand well beyond my typical shooting distances.

Being so light the 150 grain rounds I was using and will probably hunt with pack a punch and my shoulder was complaining a bit the next day. I also tested a 180 grain rounds and I could feel the difference in recoil. Shooting one or two when the adrenaline is pumping shouldn’t be an issue but a long range day would be a bit of a challenge. This is definitely a fun gun to shoot though I wouldn’t hand it off to Wonderful Wife or my grandson.

Next, I walked over to the pistol range for a few minutes.

One of the nicest things about carrying a revolver is the reloads (on speed strips) are very thin and light. One bad thing is that they are so thin and light I have, on occasion, forgotten them in a pocket and they ended up going through the washer. While I would not rely on them for self-defense I was curious if these rounds would still fire…yes, they all fired with no issue.

Unfortunately, my shooting was not as reliable as the ammunition. Using two different revolvers I was consistently shooting to the right by almost six inches. I tried changing my grip and changing the positioning of my finger on the trigger all to no avail. As I mentioned it was getting pretty hot and my blood sugar was getting a bit low so I didn’t spend any more time trying to fix the problem and packed my stuff and headed out.

All in all, it was a productive and much needed trip to the range. Now, to get back out there…

God bless!