31 December 2008

Hi My Name Is Thag

...and I am a gunaholic.

I feel, very, very sorry for anyone stupid enough to attempt to take this house by force.

24 December 2008

And Away We Go

My Form 1, $200, and my trust information went in the mail this afternoon for the ATF's consideration.

If they take the average 9 weeks they will be returning my tax stamp at about the same time as Bushmaster will be kicking the barrel I ordered to me.

17 December 2008


This Guy Really Is A Genius

More Stuff None Of My Readers (If I Have Any) Care About

I was reading a massive screed about barrel steels for the AR today. Colt has finally submitted its Chrome Vanadium Molybdenum steel formula to ANSI for standardization. It's going to be called 4150CVM. It can be made a bit harder than 4150 which can be made a bit harder than 4140.

EDIT: 4140 has less tensile strength (655 v 729.5 Mpa) but a higher yeild strength (417.1 v 379.2 Mpa) than 4150. Yield strength is: Prior to the yield point the material will deform elastically and will return to its original shape when the applied stress is removed. Once the yield point is passed some fraction of the deformation will be permanent and non-reversible. Tensile strength is: the stress at which a material breaks or permanently deforms.

My M16A2 clone uses and the XM177E2 will use 4150CVM because that's what Bushmaster ships nowadays. My R604 clone uses 4150, because that's what Colt used in 1969. All of my other guns use 4140 because that's what E.R. Shaw and Wilson Combat (Cardinal and Del-Ton respectively) use because it's much easier to machine correctly and for non-automatic, non-arctic use it's perfectly capable of doing anything the other two steels can do. 4150 is more resistant to heat changing its composition than 4140. 4150CVM has a finer grain structure than 4150 that allows it to better resist cracking and splitting when hot and exposed to extreme cold.

The heat we are talking about is along the lines of firing several hundred rounds without letting things cool off. Extreme cold is North Atlantic salt water in December on a barrel that has fired 500 rounds without stop.

Conditions that the average user will never encounter. 4140 is very similar to the steels that were used with great success in WW1 and WW2, so it's not completely useless for extreme use, just not as good as 4150 or 4150CVM.

If I was equipping the troops, I would spec the CVM steel. Our men are worth the extra money. For myself, I think I will get cheap and not overheat my barrel when it's inhumanly cold out.

16 December 2008

My Gohds

I have discovered something else I really, really hate.

When the buyer is not the person making the decision about the purchase.

I am passively trying to sell an M4 clone I have.

One of The Lovely Harvey's co-workers' husband husband's friends expressed some interest.

Wanted details, all kind of details. I provided them. The kind of questions he was asking indicated that he didn't know much about this type of gun.

Asked what I wanted for a price. I told him.

He replies that his co-worker, a licensed manufacturer and THE gun guru says that only a Colt is worth that price and that it was only worth $100 less than I paid for the parts. Oh, then why didn't you buy a gun from him?

I was not selling to him, I was selling to his buddy. His buddy, who was not going to actually purchase anything.

He later replied that he'd bought a CMT A2 clone for $600 before he started talking to me. This great deal will forever cement the value of an AR in his mind. I wonder if his buddy will tell him that CMT doesn't sell to civilians, only military and law-enforcement, and that the guy he bought from likely had a hot gun. CMT's civilian sales are branded "Stag Arms".

The AR world would be greatly enhanced by the demise of either Colt or the people who drink the Colt Kool-Aid, or both.

There are tables where other brands are compared to Colt and the basis of comparison is a list of things that Colt does against whether the other company does that or not. Never is it said if those things are necessary. Some things, yes, some things no. Some things are absolute requirements for a selective fire rifle, and are a useless extra expense for a semi-auto.

Colt-Aid drinkers are fond of quoting that Colt is "Milspec". Would that be MIL-C-70599 (M4), MIL-C-71186 (M4A1), MIL-R-63997B (M16A2) or MIL-R-71135 (M16A2E3)? Those are what the military uses to buy M16s and M4s. They don't really tell you much about how to make a rifle. They merely specify the testing procedures for acceptance of the rifles. When you take that crutch out from under them, they fall back on "Colt uses their Technical Data Package". The TDP is merely the process that Colt uses to meet the spec and it's what the Colt-Aid drinkers are quoting with their comparison lists. FN, who won the contract to make M16A2 and M16A4 don't use Colt's TDP because the TDP is proprietary.

EDIT: I am willing to put the parts I selected against the name brand guys any day of the week for accuracy or endurance. There's not a rifle in my cabinet I don't trust to function when the chips are down.

Update: The likelihood of a CMT branded rifle being stolen from a police department or illegally sold by an LEO is quite high. Another consideration is a pre-ban configuration AR from CMT that isn't hot is also very likely to be no longer in its original condition, meaning that non CMT quality parts may have been used.

15 December 2008

Bit Of A Scare With My Camera Today

I took some pics of my soon to be SBR lower. To upload the pics to Webshots, I have to remove the SD card from the camera and put into the card reader on my monitor.

All went well until I tried to put the card back into the camera. It would not lock into place!

Hoping that it might have been the card, I tried another, no luck.

Despair started to set in, I really like this camera.

We found that the only local place that even hints that they will work on a Canon Powershot S5IS has a flat rate of $136. Eeep.

Marv suggests that perhaps the door will hold the card in far enough that the latch isn't required. No joy.

I offer to sell the remains to Marv to help mitigate the cost of the new camera I am sure I will have to get now.

He says that he'd prolly do, "cheap like fill in the battery door in an attempt to hold the card in far enough" Hmmmmm, I think, that's not a half bad idea. I stick the card in to see how far it needs to go and "click" it locks.

Odd, I think.

Marv suggests shaking the camera with the door open and see if anything comes out. A small sliver of plastic does. It's the divider from between the contacts on the SD card! Not sure how that got broke, but it did and fell out.

Things seem to be fine now.

Oh, and the pics came out good too:

I added The Lovely Harvey's upper to it so that we could get an idea of how heavy the finished gun will be and to have a time-stamped indicator that the gun was in a pre-ban configuration before any ban is instated.

12 December 2008

This Is The Whole Song

This is the whole song. Canon used it in a commercial, and I thought it was part of a longer song, nope.

The tutorial is pretty cool, even if the original has been rendered private...

Some Fun For A Change

Your result for The Steampunk Style Test...

The Gadgeteer

39% Elegant, 79% Technological, 23% Historical, 56% Adventurous and 6% Playful!

You are the Gadgeteer, the embodiment of steampunk technology. Ironically, many of the things that most define your style are probably too large to easily carry about, but given the opportunity you would prefer to be seen surrounded by boiler engines, gear-driven calculators, and incredible automata. Of all the steampunk fashion styles, you place the greatest emphasis on technological accessories, and you are the most likely to create elaborate gadgets that are as much a part of your outfit as your clothes. You probably have goggles, but unlike most people you consider them to be for more than decoration. Whereas most people might look odd carrying a satchel of tools around, for you they may well be essential. Above all, you remind everyone that what sets the genre apart from Victoriana is simply the level of technology.

Try our other Steampunk test here.

Take The Steampunk Style Test
at HelloQuizzy

Anglave Got:

The Explorer

32% Elegant, 31% Technological, 30% Historical, 88% Adventurous and 26% Playful!

You are the Explorer, the embodiment of steampunk’s adventuring spirit. For you, clothing should be rugged and reliable, and just as functional as it is attractive. You probably prefer khaki or leather, and your accessories are as likely to include weapons as technological gizmos. You probably wear boots and gloves, and maybe a pith helmet. Most of what you wear is functional, and if you happen to wear goggles people had better believe that you use them. In addition to Victorian exploration gear, your outfit probably includes little knickknacks from your various travels. Above all, you are a charming blend of rugged Victorian daring and exotic curiosity.

I Thought He Retired

My favorite snob made a big announcement about how he was quitting blogging 30NOV08. Took his ball and went home.

Said he was retiring, he did. I think that if he wants to post his thoughts in such detail, he should get a blog. If he really retired, he should shut up and fade away.

He might have stopped posting to his own blog, but he's sure commenting on other people's.

After reading for a long time and seeing him spout some of the crap he's posted, I am confused as to why our snob commands such respect from the gun/right wing blog community. It gets him passes and by-runs where others get banned. The man and his wife are pompous bores, but they are very polite about how they phrase things. They say offensive things and get away with it because they preface what they say with, "with all due respect" or some such. When someone says, "Would you look at WHAT he just said!" everyone seems to fixate on HOW he said it. Form over content.

I was sick of reading him while he had his own site, but at least I could avoid him by not going to his site. Now that he's got nothing to do, he's posting all over the comments of places I do read. I still don't want to read him, or his wife. I don't think they are as smart as they think they are. It had become tiresome a long time ago, and I had hoped it would have ended, 12 days ago.

11 December 2008

The Sad Collection Of Parts Is Growing

I am waiting for the barrel, handguards, gas tube, gas tube roll pin and delta ring from Bushmaster. It's a 16", chrome lined, 1:9, 5.56 chamber that will be cut down to 11.5" once I get my Form 1 approved.

The collection. The pill bottle has the lower parts kit in it.

This is a comparison between the Bushmaster HB 5" slip-over and the 45Bravo 4.5" Moderator.

This is the two moderators lined up as they would be mounted. The 5" slip-over is on a 16" barrel where the 4.5" will be on an 11.5" barrel. There's a lot of barrel under the slip-over, 3.3". The 4.5" moderator has only 1/2" of barrel inside it, and thats just the threaded portion at the muzzle.

09 December 2008

This Is Why I Say "No Politicians From Illinois"

Memory Hole: Feds Take Gov. Blagojevich Into Custody

Perspective from here: http://www.theneweditor.com/index.php?/archives/8915-Illinois-Gov.-Blagojevich,-Chief-of-Staff,-Arrested.html

"This makes for the fourth out of the last seven elected Illinois governors to be indicted since 1960 (Otto Kerner, Dan Walker, George Ryan, and Rod Blagojevich) ... since 1972, 28 Chicago alderman have been convicted of crimes. If this number was extrapolated to the US House, it would be as if over 240 congressman had been indicted in the same period."

PS: Ever notice that when a Republican gets busted, there is (R) or "Republican" all over the place, but when a Democrat gets nailed, they are just named by title?

08 December 2008

Merry Fucking Christmas You Prick

Some fucking thief stole my debit card information and ran up some fraudulent charges.

The fraud department at my bank caught it right away and it's going to be fixed. 5-7 business days of no card though. Getting gasoline is downright painful with cash. Hates it we does.++

Never Mind

Getting this trust established has turned into one obstacle after another.

Now that we've got it drafted, we have to arrange to have The Lovely Harvey, Me, two witnesses and a notary all in the same place and time to sign it.

Then we mail it back to the lawyer.

Then he mails back our copies.

Then I have to make a checking account for the trust.

Then I wait for checks.

Then I can send out the application to the ATF.

It would will likely be mid-January before all that is done.

This is me, abandoning the project.

A sad accumulation of parts...

07 December 2008

Time Flies

67 years ago, Japan decided that we were going to kick their ass.

Isoroku Yamamoto predicted the outcome, and he planned the attack!

06 December 2008

Please Go Read This

Fantasy Ideology

Read the comments too.

I remain uncertain if I am in the 3% or not.

I think that I would fight rather than submit when they came to confiscate the guns. I think.

I don't think that a civil war is a good plan.

I imagine that if I were to resist the police, ATF, FBI, whatever, that I would end up dead. I might very well take out more than one of them. I might not.

I seriously doubt that I would attack the police while they raided the house across the street.

In general and in principle, I think that the laws we have now are unconstitutional. I find that I am willing to compromise on principles though. Note that I am going to the effort of seeking permission to build and registering my short barrel rifle. If they deny my application, I will not be making an SBR.

I think that I would mostly be content to have the National Firearms Registry reopened for machineguns and leave the rest of the gun laws alone. I think that is enough.

I would press to have the gun laws rolled back even further, but I could live with that.

05 December 2008

Step By Step...

I am getting ready to enter the heady world of the National Firearms Act with the making of a short barrel rifle (SBR).

When finished it will be a clone of an Air Force GAU-5A/A. This is almost identical to an Army XM177E2, except no forward assist. It is distinct from the XM177 (a.k.a. GAU-5A) in that it has a full fence lower and 11.5" barrel as opposed to a partial fence and 10" barrel.

I am going to be the manufacturer of this firearm. Steps to get this accomplished.

First, obtain a Revocable Living Trust. This is actually not necessary, I could file as an individual. But an individual filing means that The Lovely Harvey could never be allowed access to where it was stored without it becoming an illegal transfer. The Lovely Harvey and I will be the settlors or grantors of the trust, thus anything the trust own, we jointly own. Having the trust listed as the manufacturer also lets us skip a couple of the tedious steps of the application process, we don't have to send in fingerprints, photographs or get a signature from the local Chief Law Enforcement Officer.

Second, obtain a gun to be modified into an SBR.

Third, fill out two copies of ATF Form 1 (5320.1). If you think that tax forms are hard to figure out... wait, this is a tax form!

Forth, send in the Form 1s, copies of the Declaration of Trust, Certification of Trust and the trust's Schedule A, with $200 to the ATF.

Fifth, wait for approval.

Sixth, when approval is obtained, have the firearm engraved with the name, city and state of the manufacturer (the trust).

Seventh, get the shorter than 16" barrel or have the 16" barrel shortened to the desired and declared length.

Eighth, assemble the firearm.

Last, enjoy!

This is Thag's barrier to the National Firearms Registry closing registrations to new SBRs. In 1986 Reagan signed the "Firearms Owner Protection Act" which did a lot of good, but it also made it illegal for a private citizen to make a new machinegun for personal ownership. An M16 was just about double the price of an AR15 back then. Just prior to the panic on black rifles a new AR was about $1,000. A used M16 was $16,500. At the moment, it's not really any more expensive to buy an SBR than a normal gun. But if they close registration, then I can expect the value of my creation to soar! And we all know that kind of thing doesn't happen to me.

03 December 2008

In Memoriam DAMMIT

Today we had to put Licorice down. What was obviously cancer all over his skin started to weep blood that was not clotting. While he was not obviously in pain, he can't have felt well at all.

He was a loving companion to The Lovely Harvey for the last 17 years though I only knew him for 11.

He will be missed, dearly. His absence will be felt deeply.

Goodbye to the Imperious White Cat, Licorice!

01 December 2008

That's It I Am Done With Video Games

I was trying to play Call of Duty 4. I've got to the point where I am following my boss in a ghillie suit through a field where there's a full company of bad-guy infantry.

They spot us, we die.

I stay with the boss. They spot us, we die.

I move to one side. They spot us, we die.

I hang back. They spot us, we die.

I go ahead of him. They spot us, we die.

There's way too many to fight; so, we die.

This is not a test of skill, this is a test of persistence and luck. Will I persist until I get lucky and they don't spot me? Survey says, "XXX"! Sorry Aspyr, but this is not fun, this is irritation.

I looked at the run through at: http://faqs.ign.com/articles/833/833711p1.html and it tells me, "Follow MacMillan out the door and past a gap in a low wall. Jump over the pipe and get ready for a tense situation. Two APCs and accompanying Russian troops approach from the East-Southeast. Try not to get run over by an APC and anticipate the vector the troops are moving at so that you won't get stepped on. The best idea is to go prone and stay right behind MacMillan, and move ONLY when he does. Eventually he'll stand behind a
caterpillar tractor. You have a choice now. You can either kill the troops or sneak around."

Um, nope. That doesn't work.

You know, I stopped playing "The Army Game" over this exact same bullshit. I need to sneak past someone and they have magic "spot me" powers. And there's no way to avoid the obstacle.