Range Report: Glock 44, Glock 19 MOS and Charter Arms Professional – Update

I wanted to provide a few quick updates based on a range trip I was able to sneak in…

The Glock 19 topped with a Vortex Venom Red Dot optic and TRUGLO Tritium Pro Night Sights has bene very reliable so far. Based on this range trip the sights and the optic are dead on.

Five rounds, 10 yards with iron sights

The groupings with both the irons (as seen above) and the red dot were very good (for me). With the reliability question out of the way (really? it’s a Glock, was that ever really a question?) and the backup irons in place and dead on the new G19 will now go into my bedside safe and pick up primary home defense duties.

The Glock 44 was every bit as accurate as I expected it to be based on my trip out to the country with it. You can see the evidence below in that all ten shots are in a two inch circle at 10 yards (ignore the one 9mm flyer from a previous string and the gaping hole from putting the target sticker over the previous one that was pretty shot out).

Ignore the 9mm flyer, that’s 10 .22 LR holes in a two inch circle

In my review earlier in the week (Range Report: Glock 44) I noted that this was pretty snappy for a hand gun chambered in .22 Long Rifle. For whatever reason, maybe because I shot the G19 first, it did not seem nearly as snappy as it did previously. Nevertheless, I am still impressed with this little blaster. On a diet of cheap Federal ammo it had no issues.

Another odd thing is that I was unable to replicate the “load 11 in the magazine and have a failure to feed” that I experienced out in the woods. I am wondering if the heat and direct sun (this is Texas, after all) cause some sort of expansion or loosening in the magazines that allowed this. The magazines were in the direct sun all day and it was a warm one with temperatures in the mid-90’s later in the day.

I finally got a chance to do some accuracy testing on the Charter Arms Professional (Range Report: Charter Arms Professional)…

Meh.

It is OK for a defensive handgun. It does seem to shoot a little low but once I was able to get a feel for the correct sight alignment I was able to do OK. For whatever reason, and I find this to be true on my .327 Magnum Ruger LCR as well, it seems to be a good bit more accurate shooting .32 S&W Long than full bore magnum loads. I might blame it on the flinch factor but there is really very little recoil with this gun. Not that the groups with the .32 H&R magnums were all that big but the .32 Long’s were all just about touching. Sorry, no pictures.

I did try and shoot .32 ACP out of the Professional. In my LCR these become stuck and have to be popped out with a pencil or rod. The start doesn’t seem to get enough grip to eject them properly. This is not the case with the Charter Arms Professional. They all ejected just fine. Unfortunately, about half of them didn’t go bang when pulling the trigger. They did ignite on the second trip around the cylinder (a nice advantage of wheel guns) with one exception. When I get around to cleaning it I will take a look at the firing pin and see if there is anything obviously off there. This little guy won’t become a regular carry gun anytime soon so I am not too worried about it.

That’s all for this update.

Take care and God bless.

Range Report: Charter Arms Professional

OK, so yeah, I’m supposed to be saving money.

OK, so I really don’t need anymore guns, especially revolvers in calibers that are somewhat hard to find.

But, it was a good deal…and I really like .32 caliber revolvers. The one I found has a brushed stainless finish instead of the black nitride of the new model but other than that it is the same. It is a seven shot revolver about the same size as a J-Frame chambered in .32 H&R Magnum. The front sight is a fiber optic with the traditional gutter sight rear of small revolvers. Weighing in at 22 ounces it is a little heavier than the Ruger LCR (13.5 ounces) and sports a 3 inch barrel.

For a more complete overview of features check out this post link.

With the restrictions in place (for us) going to a traditional range is not an option but we do have access to some property out in the country where we can get some shooting in. It allows us to form some initial impressions of the revolver. Unfortunately, I didn’t have the opportunity to to get a really good measure of the accuracy of the revolver. We headed out of town at the last minute and I didn’t have time to put together the gear to do any real accuracy testing. So, that will have to wait for another day.

Already had a holster that fit

First Impressions:

This is definitely not the highest quality revolver I have ever purchased. The fit and finish is seriously lacking. There are machine marks in various places including the gutter sight.

Machine marks in the gutter sight

The trigger pull is definitely not smooth. Gritty is a pretty good description of the trigger pull although on the positive side it is pretty light. The grips feel good in the hand and overall the revolver feels really good in the hand. The weight is nicely balanced in the hand.

All the controls seemed a bit sticky and stiff. I think a good cleaning would help things out a bit.

Range Time:

I knew that .327 Magnum was pretty loud but I was a bit surprised at how loud .32 H&R Magnum out of a three inch barrel was. Of course I was outdoors and not wearing ear protection so…

The recoil even with magnum rounds is minimal. It is actually a very soft shooting revolver. Load it up with .32 Smith & Wesson Longs and it has no more recoil than a .22 LR.

The front sight (in daylight) is very bright and easy to pick up.

As the day went on and more rounds were sent down range the grittiness of the trigger and the stickiness of the controls got better. As a side note after a good cleaning they have improved even more.

I wish I could comment on the accuracy. The targets we were using were at unknown distances and the back drop didn’t lend itself to seeing where the misses impacted but what I can say is that this gun in a real pleasure to shoot. The balance, the lack of recoil the grips…it all adds up to a whole that is better than the parts.

I like it and can’t wait for the ability to go test out the accuracy. In the meantime I will be loading up some .32 H&R Magnum since it is nearly impossible to find around here.

Take care and God bless.

Training With .22 Long Rifle

Back before the “Great Ammo Shortage” I toyed with the idea of using .22 Long Rifle versions of my primary firearms for training purposes. Once .22 LR disappeared from the shelves this idea fell by the wayside. Well, the venerable .22 Long Rifle is back on store shelves and while it is not as cheap as it once was it is pretty reasonably priced once again.

So, why train with .22 LR?

The primary reason for training with .22 LR is cost. With lower priced ammunition the cost of training goes down which means more training for the same money. Bulk .22 LR costs about 2.8 cents per round and even premium rounds like the CCI MiniMags come in around 5.9 cents/round. Even premium rounds cost less than bulk 9mm (11.7 cents per round). For rifle cartridges the difference is even greater. Super cheap 7.62×39 comes in at 16.2 cents per round and 5.56 tops that at 26.7 cents per round.

Until recently, I carried a revolver for my every day carry (EDC). Specifically, I carried a Ruger LCR in .38 Special. Back before the Great Ammo Shortage I also purchased a version chambered in .22 LR. It is identical in almost every way to the .38 Special except the caliber, 8 vs. 5 shots and the trigger pull. Like most rimfire revolvers the trigger pull is significantly heavier than the centerfire counterpart. I am OK with that. Even though I now carry a semi-auto I still train much of the

Ruger LCR in .22 LR

time with small, lightweight revolvers. Why? For the same reason that batters take a few practice swings with a weight on their bat. Swinging the heavier bat makes it easier to swing the lighter. Maintaining a proper sight picture (especially with simple gutter sights) while managing a 6-8 pound trigger pull on an ultralight snubby is darned tough. It is even tougher with the heavier trigger pull on the rimfire version. A couple dozen rounds with a snubby and my speed an accuracy with the semi-auto are both noticeably improved.

The bottom line if that the key components of gun handling trigger control, sight alignment and sight picture can all be practiced as effectively with a rimfire as with centerfire…more cost effectively.

This doesn’t mean you should never train with centerfire rounds. No since.22 LR will give you any practice with recoil management.

Glock G44

One more caveat, it is important to train with rimfire weapons that are as similar as practical to the centerfire firearms you use for defense or hunting. As I mentioned I have a .22 LR version of the LCR I used to carry as my EDC. I also have a .22 LR version of my primary hunting rifle (Ruger American Predator). I just picked up a Glock 44 which is the .22 LR version of my bedside gun, the Glock 19 (range review to come). I may even pick up the new .22 LR version of the LCP II that I occasionally carry.

That’s where the analysis of your own budget needs to come into play. Do you shoot/train often enough for the ammo cost savings to make up for the purchase of the .22 LR version? If you invested in the rimfire version would you be able to train more. As a gun guy, I like guns and shooting so the cost/benefit works out. You need to do your own math.

Hope this gives some food for thought.

Take care and God bless.

What Did You Prep This Month?

The last month has been pretty crazy for us (still/again). We are still helping to support my oldest daughter’s family. Our youngest daughter was in a a car accident. Fortunately, no one was hurt but her car was a total write off.

To top it all off Wonderful wife was down for over a week with the flu. As she began to recover we discovered a fairly significant health issue that had been causing some of her more severe symptoms. They had initially written them off as stress/flu related but there was more to it than that. For those so inclined, she could sure use your prayers for healing and for the treatment plan to be the right path moving forward. The neurologist we chose is very well regarded and in pretty high demand so we won’t be able to get in for an appointment for several months. She does have medication to address the symptoms so other than the stress of waiting and wondering she should be OK until then.

Walk With God

Completed a round of praying for my 100 closest neighbors.

I am still working though the study of Zechariah. To be honest I should have finished it already but some it has been a pretty hectic month. I need to get back to what’s most important.

We have continued teaching Sunday School and attending church.

Self Defense/Hunting

We went hunting this month and I got two feral hogs. They added quite a bit of meat to the freezer and the guys in the family also had a blast spending time together.

Glock 19 MOS (Not mine)

For my birthday I decided to treat myself and spend money that I shouldn’t be spending on yet another Glock 19 (see the finances section). I made the mistake of handling the Gen 5 MOS that is already set up for a red dot optic and really liked it. I can’t tell why it felt so much better in the hand than the Gen 4s I already have (lack of finger grooves? reprofiled grip?) but it does (for me). I feel like I have a much more secure grip on the weapon  and that could result in better recoil management. Whatever the reason, I like it and now I will be focusing on breaking it in and using it to continue my experiments with optics on a handgun.

TruGlo Tritium Pro Sights

The Gen 4 Glock 19 that I was using with the red dot has been updated. I am not a big fan of the standard plastic Glock sights. They are not exceptionally durable or effective as sights. So, I have been planning an upgrade for quite a while now with an eye towards the TruGlo Tritium Pro sights. They are almost identical to the SIG X-Ray sights on the P365 and I have always really liked those sights. I was able to get them out to the range and, yes, they are much better than the standard Glock sights. I don’t feel they are quite as good as the SIG X-Rays, though. The green ring around the SIG front sight makes it a bit easier to pick up and focus on as opposed to the white ring on the TruGlo sights. I also like the square notch on the rear sight a bit better than the “U” cut on the TruGlo sights. For me, it make the sight picture seem a bit more open and I am slightly more accurate with the SIG sights. All in all though I am very happy with the new sights and the TruGlo equipped G19 is now my “bedside gun.” I will begin replacing the sights on my other Glocks shortly.

I made several trips to the range this month to not only test new sights, optics and firearms but also to work on sharpening my basic handgun skills. Primarily, I have been focusing on increasing my accuracy and working several drills that sharpen transitions and speed.

The transition to Outside The Waistband (OWB) carry is basically 100% complete. I still pocket carry when heading to on-sites with customers because most of them prohibit the carry of a firearm and it is a bit cumbersome to remove a belt holster in the car before heading in. This transition allows me to carry a larger firearm with more capacity (Glock 43 6+1 or SIG P365 10+1) and with the VersaCarry Commander holster I even have a spare mag available (7 extra rounds for G43 or 12 extra rounds for P365). I also tend to be a little faster and more accurate with them than with the Ruger LCRs I typically carried in my pocket.

With the elections coming up and the chance of an anti-gun candidate being elected I have started stocking up on ammunition again. I don’t have any new baseline inventory goals in this area but with each paycheck we buy a little ammo, especially if it is on sale. The main focus is on our primary self defense/utility calibers that are at risk to disappear in another ammo shortage; 9mm, 5.56 and .22 Long Rifle.

Supplies/Gear

I replaced my Every Day Carry (EDC) backpack. The cheap little Amazon bag I have been carrying was starting to rear out and come apart. To avoid replacing it again anytime soon I upgraded to a AMP12 from 5.11 Tactical (link). These bags are much higher quality and more durable that the Amazon bag was. The modularity might come in handy as well. This bag serves as my work backpack toting around my laptop as well as an EDC bag outside of work toting books, papers, and gear so it gets a pretty serious workout and the extra durability of this bag should mean that it will last a good long time.

Security

No changes or activity this month.

Finances

Wow, talk about going the wrong direction on an area of focus!

We have had to dip waaaay into the well of our savings over the last few months.

We purchased vehicles for Wonderful Wife and myself. She was in actual need of a new vehicle as hers was becoming more and more unreliable. Rather than spending more money on it it made sense to just replace it with something newer. For myself, it was a matter to changing to a more practical vehicle for my current needs. A truck is a lot more useful for us right now than a subcompact car. Both of these vehicles are all-wheel drive and have a reasonable amount of ground clearance making them both better capable as bug-out vehicles than what we had before.

Just after we purchased them my youngest daughter totaled her car. As a (newly) single mom she did not have the resources to get a reliable replacement. So, we dipped into savings to be able to help her out. The insurance check covered about half of the outlay. The good thing is that this is just the sort of “rainy day” event that we want to have money in savings for.

We have also been supporting my oldest daughter’s family since she lost her job several months ago. This extra expense has limited the amount of money we are able to set aside to build/rebuild our our savings. Her husband is now working so this drain should be reduced and allow us to contribute more over the next few months.

This is a very high priority for us right now. Honestly, it is at the top of the priority list.

Fitness/Health

This is another area of almost total failure. My diet and exercise are completely out the window. On the positive side, the FSA account has been topped off and deductibles reset with the new year so I have already been to the dentist (cleaning and updated treatment plan) and the doctor (physical) this year. I have follow up appointments set with the dentist to start on the needed repairs. To be honest, I probably would not last long in a crisis situation given the condition of my teeth so the work is very needed and will help my overall health. It is tough to eat right when you are limited to soft foods much of the time because of the pain. The results of the physical reminded me how important it is to get back on the diet and exercise plan.

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

Take care and God Bless

What Did You Prep This Month?

Another slow month for prepping…

Walk With God

I finally completed my study of 1 and 2 Samuel. Since I am doing a Wednesday night study of the book of Mark I haven’t started another study yet. Instead I am reading a book on the culture of Israel during biblical times to help me better understand the social context of the Bible and especially the Old Testament. Completed another two rounds of praying for my 100 closest neighbors, continued teaching Sunday school and attending church.

Self Defense/Hunting

Purchased a Bond Arms .410 Derringer (for snakes) and I am still slowly stocking up on ammunition: .410, and .30-30 this month.

I made it to the range to test out the new Bond Arms derringer and a few other firearms but I also spent a good bit of time working with my primary carry gun, the Ruger LCR.

Supplies/Gear

Nothing this month.

Security

Nothing this month.

Finances

Added some to savings but not as much as we would have liked.

Fitness/Health

Nothing this month. Mostly we were just still trying to recover from bronchitis and upper respiratory infections.

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

Take care and God Bless

Everyday Carry (EDC) Bag Dump – 2019 Update

Back in December of 2016 I did a post on my EDC (Every Day Carry Bag) and the items contained. A recent comment on that post reminded me that the only constant is change and that is as true of my EDC as well as it is of anything. So, I decided this would be a good time to review (for myself as well) what I am carrying on a daily basis and how I am carrying it.

So, here goes…

The biggest change is my bag. I switched to a standard backpack instead of the smaller shoulder bags I have been carrying for years. I picked this one up on sale at Midway USA some time back it is seems to fit my needs pretty well.

New EDC Bag

I like lots of pockets and such for organization and I wanted something light. It fits the bill and cost me less than $20. It has some molle and velcro making it a bit tactical but in this part of Texas it could be argued that having a tactical bag helps you blend in better. Besides, it is pretty practical.

I have started carrying a water bottle with me as part of my efforts to improve my health and I was able to scrounge a molle water bottle holder that fits the standard bottle just fine. I also have another molle water bottle holder (that matches) and holds the 32 ounce bottle I carry on occasion. The webbing in the front hold my pens including a write in the rain pen and I also have a “tactical” pen with a built in glass breaker and the ability to be wielded as a pretty potent impact weapon.

The top outside compartment holds items that I use regularly including breath mints (for my marriage’s survival), lip balm, antacid, over the counter pain medicines, Kleenex and my glasses case.

Quick Access Items

Now that I am back to wearing glasses this is a key part of my carry now days.

The lower outside compartment holds a multi-tool, write in the rain notebook, tourniquet, antiseptic wipes and a small measuring tape.

The measuring tape made its way into my EDC when we were rebuilding after the flood. It was one of the most used items for several months.

The mesh compartment inside the bag carries glucose tablets (I am hypoglycemic), sunscreen (again, it’s Texas), toothpick/floss, cleaning pads that can be used to clean glasses or sanitize, coupons (who doesn’t want to save money) and, most importantly, hot sauce packets. Can you believe even down here there are restaurants that look at you funny when you ask for hot sauce?

There is another, larger compartment in the bag that holds a few more items; an emergency poncho, bandana, a quick snack (remember the hypoglycemia), and a small pouch containing various cables and batteries.

I have a spare battery I can use to charge my phone or other electronic, two spare AAA batteries, cell phone cable, and plugs to allow me to charge from a car outlet or wall outlet.

Sharing space in the same compartment is a first aid kit.

There might also be some extra ammunition somewhere easily accessible.

Yes, I know one is missing a round

I was able to carry all this in the smaller bags I used to carry so why did I shift to a backpack?

Two reasons:

1. I noticed that people don’t pay as much attention to someone carrying a standard (even tacticool) backpack. It is pretty normal these days and has replaced the briefcase or satchel as a (semi)standard mens accessory. Even in church I am not the only guy carrying a backpack. I was (almost always) the only guy carrying a smaller pack/man purse. I prefer to blend in and not attract too much attention to myself.

2. It makes it easier to carry certain items. Specifically, the teacher’s guide for the Sunday School curriculum we are using is notebook paper sized (8.5×11) and did not fit easily into my previous bag. A Bible with print large enough for me to be able to read it also fits handily (although I usually use an electronic version so I can carry multiple translations).

That’s my current EDC. What do you think? Suggestions?

Take care and God Bless.

 

The Charter Arms PROFESSIONAL

First off, no, I didn’t buy another gun…

…but I just might once these become available.

Charter Arms has just announced an all new model in their lineup. No, it isn’t a different shade of pink or tiger stripes this time. It is a new seven shot revolver chambered in .32 H&R Magnum called the Professional (or as it is written in the press releases, the PROFESSIONAL). This new little wheel gun offers a pretty nice list of features including a fiber optic front sight, a three inch barrel with a full length underlug, (as mentioned) a seven round capacity and a nice round but frame with walnut grips.

The Charter Arms PROFESSIONAL

This looks like a really nice little revolver for concealed carry and for range time. Being a steel frame and cylinder it should soak up the negligible recoil of the .32 Magnum cartridge although that might mean it is a tad bit on the heavy side for a carry piece. The whole thing is finished in a Blacknitride+™ coating that sounds like it should be very similar to the finish on most Glocks and so very durable.

The MSRP is published at $438 and so it is also a very affordable choice. Personally, I can’t wait to get my hands on one and run it through its paces and at that price I won’t have to sell a kidney to get one.

Here’s the video from the You Tubes on this little guy:

Take care and God bless!

2019 Preparedness Assessment (Part 5: Flood)

It does not take much for most parts of the Texas Gulf Coast to flood. Even sixty or so miles from the actual coast we are only a few feet above sea level here. For the last twenty years or so we felt pretty safe in our neighborhood. Even during the worst floods during that time we were high and dry…until Hurricane Harvey in 2017. That changed everything for us and as a result it is a separate and dedicated post in this series.

There is no way to stop or stem the floodwaters once they start rising. We have to trust and pray that those managing the local waterways take the appropriate action. The three different government agencies managing the lakes and flood control systems failed to do so in 2017. Even basic coordination and communication failed. So when one agency (literally) opened the flood gates upstream and the agency managing the lake downstream failed to take the appropriate corresponding action our house became a part of the river that runs a mile or two from our house…

From a preparedness perspective there is not much (short of moving several hundred miles away) to do to prevent damage. It is just a matter of minimizing the impact.

Protecting Possessions

De clutter – We have a two story house and anything able to be moved up to the second floor was (and should be) safe. The problem was all the junk we had accumulated over time left little space to move things into. Most of it was our junk we had accumulated but didn’t want to part with but a lot belonged to my kids and their spouses. We let them view their old rooms as their own storage areas. That has changed (and still needs to change some more). We are actively working to decrease the upstairs clutter so we can save more of what is downstairs.

Critical Supplies and Gear – All of this has been moved upstairs permanently. We have some frequent use items that might still need to be moved like items in our pantry but for the most part critical gear and supplies reside on the second floor.

Better Inventory –  For the most part, I was able to save everything of significant sentimental and monetary value that could be move but it was a lot of work and took a lot of time and energy that could have been used doing other things. This also means having a good spreadsheet of other documentation (storing in multiple locations) of what we own and what we paid for it.

Finances

Insurance – The reason for the documentation? Flood insurance, which we now have. At least around here a normal homeowners policy will cover water damage if it comes through the roof or the plumbing. It does not cover flooding from natural disasters like Harvey. Although insurance is a great thing it has its downsides as well. Both of my neighbors who did have flood insurance are still trying to get reimbursed for their losses…

Savings – So we can continue to live, rebuild and cover what insurance doesn’t we need to make sure we have enough in the bank. In addition to donations from work, money from FEMA and home repair loans we were at least $10,000 out of pocket for repairs/replacement. How many people have that much to carry them over? A lot of folks in our neighborhood did not and many had to “walk away” from their homes allowing the banks to foreclose on them.

Supplies

Tools – Wrecking bars and utility knives/box cutters were worth their weight in gold for a few days after Harvey. These are cheap and we will have plenty extras on hand if there is a next time. We will also have a ton of replacement blades on hand. Saws (power and hand operated), shovels, wheelbarrows, dollies, and hammers were also critical during the tear-out after the waters receded. We will also have a few cases of contractor grade trash bags.

Gear – Masks to keep dust, debris and mold out of our respiratory tract are important. We will have a ready supply of them along with gloves. Work gloves are important but so are surgical gloves to keep your hands free from the nasty stuff flood waters carry with them.

Self-Defense

A small lightweight revolver (Ruger LCR in my case) was a constant companion during and immediately after the flood. The first chamber in the cylinder was loaded with “rat shot” for any unwanted four legged or no legged critters that decide to make your home theirs. The remaining four rounds were traditional self-defense rounds for any two legged varmints. At some points in time a shotgun was kept close at hand.

Bugout/Get Home Bag

Tropical storms are a common enough occurrence around here that most businesses don’t close. We go to work and hope for the best. Sometimes that best isn’t so good. On a couple of occasions I have been trapped away from hope by rising flood waters from tropical storms or even winter weather. The side of the road, a gas station or even a customer’s office is not a great place to spend the night. Having a few essentials along can make a world of difference.

With Harvey we had plenty of warning to pack what we needed to evacuate. We may not always be so lucky. I have historically kept a bag in my car with enough supplies to sustain me for a couple of days. I even put one together for Wonderful Wife. However, we lived out of those bags for quite a while and haven’t really restocked or verified what was still inside. This is a big goal of mine over the next few months.

So, that’s our flood strategy. What are we missing? Any other suggestions?

Take care and God bless.

 

Three Inch .357 Magnum Ruger LCRx

Ruger has gone and done it again. They seem to be really good at waiting until I purchase something that is close to what I want and then releasing the exact thing I was wanting. On the flip side, maybe I am just not patient enough…

Three Inch Ruger LCRx in .357 Magnum

In this case I just purchased a short barreled LCRx in .357 Magnum after deciding that Ruger wouldn’t release a three inch version. Well, yesterday I received an email that they did indeed release a three inch .357 Magnum LCRx…Doh!

I probably won’t run out and drop the cash on this model immediately, since I just bought the snubbie version, but one may make it into the safe at some point in time. Now that Ruger has taken the plunge on a three inch .357 Magnum LCRx it is very possible that a 9mm or .327 Magnum version could follow at some point. Both of which would also be very high on my “I want” list!

Take care and God bless!