Sunday, December 25, 2011

First Direct Communications with Heizer

With the holidays, I'm behind on my email so while my new GPS was getting a map update downloaded I scanned through what's accumulated this weekend.  I was pleasantly surprised to find a note from Heizer in response to my query about their new DoubleTap. 

Last week, I posted an update on the Heizer DoubleTap.  One thing that was interesting in the provided photos was that the barrels shown in the latest pictures did not appear to be rifled.  The blog from last week can be found here.  I shot a note over to Heizer and asked them about it and received a response from Ray Kohout himself this morning.  The DoubleTap pictured in the latest images was indeed a mock up and production barrels will be rifled.  He also answered my question about if it would be possible to co-mingle a 9mm and .45 ACP barrel in a single barrel set.  The answer was co-mingling would not be an option, which is fine since I wouldn't want that.  I was more interested in the option to port only the under barrel while leaving the over barrel sans porting.

From my shot gunning days, I learned that firing the under barrel causes the gun to rotate less since it's more in line with the center axis of the gun.  When shooting trap doubles, the under barrel is shot first to aid in getting to the second target as quickly as possible.  Ideally, with the DoubleTap it should discharge the lower barrel first before discharging the top barrel for the second shot.  I still think that porting only the bottom barrel would be a good option for getting back on target as fast as possible for the second shot.

I hope everyone had a fantastic Christmas with their family and friends.  Happy New Year to everyone and Mouse Guns and Gear will see you next year.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

A Unique Opportunity to Review A Heizer DoubleTap

Two months ago I heard about a new firearm from Heizer Firearms called the DoubleTap.  My first post about it was published on October 15th and much more information has come out from Heizer over the last two months.  I've been following Heizer on Twitter and I know they also have a Facebook page if you are interested.  A little after my first post about Heizer, I was contacted by their PR Team about taking part in their early release testing and review cycle.  Needless to say, I was flattered and jumped on the opportunity to be part of that group.  I really enjoy putting together my reviews for the few I've done, but being 100% self funded without any commercial support usually involves paying "out the nose" for a new model if I'm lucky enough to track one down.  This arrangement with Heizer definitely takes that pressure off me.


Late last week, I checked in with the folks at Heizer to see if I had "made the cut" and had a spot on their Testing and Evaluation list.  It was great to hear back and learn that I was indeed on the list.  At this point there isn't a confirmed date for delivery, but I have a feeling that it will probably be some time after the annual NSSF SHOT Show in January.  It's also up the air as far as which model with be provided for evaluation. 

When I was confirming my opportunity to participate in an early review, I was given a pair of new pictures to share with you all.  The first image shows a cut-away view of the DoubleTap.  The next two images come from the Heizer Facebook photos.  The second two pictures are more exciting because they show an actual cut-away DoubleTap with .45 ACP barrels installed and a spare set of what appear to be 9mm barrels.  You can also see the two finish variations of black and something similar to Ruger's Target Gray.






The second provided image shows a DoubleTap with the aluminum frame.  With the aluminum frame being 2 ounces lighter than the titanium frame, and retailing for about $200 less than the Ti version, I bet these become to fastest selling models offered.  Not sure about you, but I think it looks pretty darn sexy.

When looking at this picture in full size and expanding it a little, the bore appears to be smooth and without rifling.  I've asked the PR group about that, but I may go to the source with that question.  I've also been thinking about the porting a bit more and it's really only needed for the first shot to help recover for the second shot.  If given the option, I would really like to get a set of .45 ACP barrels with only the first shot barrel ported and the second shot barrel without ports.  This would allow me to velocity test both barrel types and still test the recoil reduction offered by the porting.  In the real world usage scenario, first shot barrel porting will be the one that matters as it allows for faster recovery for the second shot.  Second shot barrel porting isn't needed for shot recovery and would only reduce velocity from the second shot.  

The last picture was an early promotional photo that shows a DoubleTap .45 ACP along with an iPhone.  When I saw this image, I pretty much made up my mind that I had to have a DoubleTap.  I NEVER leave my house without my iPhone.  You can figure out the rest.

I've read that holsters in nylon and leather are in the works with their various makers so there must be some dummy guns floating around out there now.  I'm sure Alan at Remora could whip something up quickly if I asked him to take a shot at it.  

So stay tuned for any updates.  I'm really excited about the opportunity and it's lit a fire under me to finish up my bullet catcher so I can do some terminal ballistics testing with the 3" barrels that the DoubleTap comes with.  It will be interesting to compare velocities and terminal performance from the DoubleTap with that of a 3" barreled 1911.  The DoubleTap may just be the perfect back up for those that typically carry a .45 ACP as their primary.


Sunday, December 11, 2011

Savage Scout Rifle Update

A couple of weeks ago I did a blog post about putting together a Savage FV-SR scout rifle in 22LR.  Last weekend I got rained out at the range so it gave me time to order up a more appropriate scope and read up a little more about experiences others have had with various ammo selections in their FV-SRs.

As a reminder, this is what the Savage looked like with the original Bushnell rimfire scope.

After reading some different posts from others about their rimfire scope choices, there was an overwhelming positive feedback thread on the Nikon Prostaff 3x9 Rimfire scope.  Midway USA had the scope in stock along with Wolf Match .22LR ammo that others reported as a great and accurate ammo when shot through this rifle.

I took a chance and ordered a second set of Leapers UTG rings in medium height.  It's always a gamble when you order a scope and rings or your rifle.  Luckily, the rings were more than high enough to accommodate the larger objective lens diameter of the new scope.  Here's what she looks like now.

It was chilly and windy today, but the sun was out so I decided to take a run up to the range and start running some rounds down range with the scout.  Unfortunately, I forgot the clips that hold my target holder together so I was able to rig something up with the clothespins I had in my bag.  With the headwind coming up range over the backstop, the target was swinging in the breeze.  I was able to get the scope zeroed and the wind died down slightly just long enough for me to get one good group on paper.  If it's any indication of what's to come in this rifle's future, I'm going to be very happy with this rifle.  It's so nice when you feel good about the money you spent on something.  I'm really pleased.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Diamondback DB9 Frame Pin Replacement

If you've been following the blog, you may remember that I reported on an issue with one of the frame pins walking out of the frame during firing on my DB9.  It turns out that I wasn't alone and many other owners reported the same issue.  We've all been waiting on Diamondback to come up with a solution to this problem that didn't involve the application of blue loctite or some other adhesive.  My try at applying loctite didn't work out so well and I never did get the problem pin to stay put.


The good folks at Diamondback Firearms let us know on Monday of this week that knurled pins were now available in the Diamondback on-line store.  Ordering the pins was pretty simple, but did require that I set up an account with the store even though the pins are shipped out free of charge. 

I really wanted to get out and shoot my Savage Scout today, but I got rained out.  The postman delivered my replacement pins today so I shot a live video of me going through the process of replacing the old pins with the new set from Diamondback.  It's a pretty simple process and shouldn't give you any difficulty.  Now I just need to get out to the range and see how well the new pins hold.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Building My Scout Rifle

Two weeks ago I noticed that one of the guns on my Want List was back in stock at Buds and available for a really good price.  Going from memory, I think it was $40 to $50 less than when I last checked on them.  Unfortunately, these rifles have been out of stocks for the last few months so I was stoked to see them back in stock at such a great price.  Order In!!!

This is a Savage Mark II FV-SR rifle in .22LR.  The key features that make this model a little more special than the standard Savage Mark II series rifles are the tactical bolt handle, 16 1/2" threaded barrel, fluted medium heavy barrel, and the Picatinny rail mounted on top of the receiver.  Oh, and did I mention that it's BLACK.  This baby screams to be dressed up with tactical goodies.  I had to oblige. 


As some of you may know, adding tactical goodies to anything gets pretty expensive, pretty darn fast.  I learned my lesson on my Ruger SR-22 rifle build that it's not hard to end up with more money tied up in the accessories than you paid for the original rifle.  I decided to be a bit smarter with this build and do it right, but don't spend money like a drunken sailor. 

First stop was at Boyd's for a new stock.  Not many options available, which was fine because I only wanted their Tacticool stock.  I also ordered new trigger guard and bottom plate hardware.  Sad to say, but the Savage trigger guard is molded into the plastic stock.  The great news is they had the model I wanted in stock and in my favorite tactical color.....BLACK.

I ordered a few spare mags and a Bi-pod from CDNN.  The mags were factory 5 and 10 rounders and the Bi-pod was a cheap-ish model from Shooter's Ridge.  I opted for the shortest 6" to 9" adjustable model since I was working with a small footprint rifle.

Last stop was Midway for some UTG max strength QD scope rings and ammo that I will use to test this puppy out when it's done.  Over the last week the stuff has been tricking in via the boys in brown that drop by the house from time to time and leave stuff on the porch.

I tried to spend too much money on a scope at Academy's Black Friday sale, but the sweet Leupold Rifleman 3x9 scope they had advertised was long gone by the time I got down to Academy at 7:00am.  I knew that deal was too good, so I should have been there at 5am.  No worries, I had a Bushnell 3x9 rimfire scope I had purchased locally a few years ago and never got around to putting on my 10/22 so I decided to use it for this project.

It took me about 45 minutes to put all the pieces together and finish my .22 Scout Rifle.  What a difference a few extra parts make.  The stock is really fantastic and well worth the price that Boyd's charges for their finished stocks.  If you have the time and are so inclined you can buy this stock unfinished and paint it yourself.  I'm glad I had them do the finishing.  The action dropped right in with zero fitting required.  The barrel floats freely and a dollar bill easily slides between stock and barrel from the muzzle to the receiver.  The $20 UTG rings work really well.  The cheapie bi-pod also fits great.  I'm actually super excited about getting out and shooting this thing as soon as I possibly can this weekend.


Since I didn't go overboard on the tactical add-ons, I had some money left over to pick up some good .22 ammo to see how accurate this rifle can be.  I picked up a pretty good assortment of the expensive stuff and also included a few boxes of ammo that I've always wanted to try that are less expensive.  I also raided my stash and found some high dollar match ammo that I've been storing for many years so I guess it's time to shoot that up.


I may post a few targets and let you know how it shoots after I get it out on the range this weekend.  If it shoots 1/2 as good as it looks, I will be a happy man.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Just Returned from the Big Show

It's been over a decade since I last attended the Tulsa Arms Show.  If you've never been, you should put it on your bucket list if you have even a smidgen of interest in guns and gear.  I didn't realize it, but the show is touted as being the world's largest gun show and I'm inclined to believe that claim after spending 6 hours walking the show yesterday.


I met a Tulsa local friend and fellow gun nut at 10 am yesterday.  We browsed non-stop until 1:30pm when we finally took a breather for a BBQ plate.  After our 15 minute break we were back out on the floor until we finally called it quits at 4:00 pm so we could meet up with some other locals for drinks, dinner, and cigars.

Notable things I saw included a $64,500 Holland and Holland double rifle what was just sitting out on a table along with the other Parker shotguns and high dollar fine English doubles.  Just having the chance to walk that series of tables and drink in all that fine walnut and custom engraving was well worth the $10 admission price.  I also spent some time walking the "Ruger Wall" which was a collection of displays put up by the Ruger Collectors' Association.    Again, this series of displays was worth the price of admission.  I'd love to show you pictures from the show, but there is a strict no pictures policy posted at the entrance.  You'll just have to take my word for how good the show is until you have the chance to experience it for yourself.

I went to the show with a goal of finding a Ruger 77/22 in .22 LR, but I didn't see very many of them on the floor.  I estimate we walked 50% of the aisles and really only looked at about 25% of the tables in great detail.  There were a few things that caught my eye, but I was able to resist temptation and not rush into a purchase I might regret later on.  I did make a fantastic deal with my buddy that I walked the show with.  That deal would never have happened if we didn't spend 6 hours talking with each other during the show as I had no idea he wanted to sell something that I really wanted, but he didn't bring it along with him to the show.  So I can cross one more off my wish list.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Heizer DOUBLETAP Video - Tons of Details

While I was out of town, it appears that Heizer has posted their first video on the DOUBLETAP.  They've also added many more details about the pistol.  Very notable features are interchangeable barrels and the option of Aluminum or Titanium frame.  Porting is shown as an option for those that would rather skip it.  The MSRPs have also been added to the Heizer website.  First quarter 2012 is just around the corner.

 

Rather than create a new blog for this update, I'm just going to edit my previous blog and add this video link to Ray Kohout, the inventor of the DoubleTap explaining and demonstrating his new invention.  It does look pretty sweet.
 




Friday, October 28, 2011

Not Really A Mousegun, But It Was My Birthday

Back in the 90's I started a personal tradition of buying one really special gun per year on or about my birthday.  Regardless of how they turned out or worked, these were all going to be "keepers" that were never going to be for sale or trade.  To fund these purchases, I kept an aquarium in my bedroom and each day I would dump any change from my pockets into it.  When birthday time rolled around, I would bag up all the loose change and take it down to the bank so they could count it up and let me know how much cost I had defrayed through my yearly savings.  This went on for several years and I've still got some really unique pieces that were made or refinished or have some other special characteristic about them that make them unique to me.  This all came to abrupt end at the end of the 90's when I started shooting competitive trap and the "buy-in" for a top of the line fine Italian trap combo started approaching the price of a custom Ranger bass boat.

Spin the clock ahead a decade and I'm back on the one special gun a year program.  For 2010 it was a Seecamp LWS380 that was ordered in 2008 for delivery in 2010.  The backlog is still bad, but back then it was a full two years.  The only thing really special about it is a personalized serial number with my initials and birth year.  It's unique to me and the only custom serial number gun I've ever owned.

Back in 2009, my wife bought me a Ruger Mark III 22/45 Hunter for my birthday.  Nothing super special about that other than it was the first time I was ever gifted a firearm.  Requiring me do the transfer paperwork as the ultimate owner of the gun ruined any surprise factor, but it's the thought that counts.  Another part of her gift to me that year was a copy of American Handgunner Tactical Annual 2010 as seen below.  I really thought the cover shot  and inner magazine article pictures looked great.  I read the magazine and probably read through the cover story about 3 times since my experiences with the Kahr brand of pistols matched up so closely with those of the author of the cover story.  We were both exposed to Kahr pistols several years ago and really didn't think much of them.  I happened to see Kahrs for the first time at a S&W and Kahr Demo Day at a local range.  I tried the then new S&W 945 and a cute little MK9.  I loved the 945 and absolutely hated the kick and hand sting I got from the MK9.
 


In the summer of 2009 we were all scrounging for ammo.  This forced me to expand my horizons and get into more of the local pawn dealers and sporting goods suppliers.  On one of those trips, I happened to see this new in the box Kahr CW45 in the display case.
I asked to see it and one thing lead to another and it followed me home that day.  It's been a great pistol.  It's been 100% reliable and quite accurate for a cheaper version of the Kahr P45.  I have had such a good experience with it, I was considering using it for concealed carry, but wanted to add night sights to it first.  Then I remembered reading that magazine article about the Robar custom P45 which is about the same size as the CW45, but comes with some more extensive finishing and that sexy sculptured slide.  I was lucky enough to find the original magazine in the basement so I went over to the Robar website to get more specifics on the P45 package featured in the article.

Robar had a page on their site that detailed all the work they do to the box stock P45 to get it to what you see on the magazine cover above.  The worklist is detailed as:

Robar's Kahr Package

  • Forward cocking serrations
  • Texture grip
  • Smooth trigger operation
  • Dehorn & Bull Nose Slide
  • Round & polish trigger face
  • Add beavertail
  • Polish throat
  • Test fire for function
  • Ammunition
  • Engrave Robar logo on top of slide
  • XS 24/7 Big Dot night sight
  • Norton Special NP3 refinish
  • NP3 Finish two magazines

You can either buy the whole package at a discounted price, or take bits and pieces from the list at full price for each modification.  You also have to pay for shipping both ways so add in for that and you end up with a really expensive list of modifications.  If this was going to be my 2011 birthday gun, then I had to go all in for the whole package.  I was able to track down a NIB P45 from a dealer that was just down the street from Robar.  I put in my Robar order and then I sat back and waited for the work to be done.

The Robar P45 ended up being the most expensive pistol I ever purchased.  Probably not smart, but I really did want something special for birthday 2011.  So now I have to figure out how to pay for the package.  Well, I stopped the aquarium change bank at about the same time that I stopped using real paper money to buy stuff.  Not sure how things work for you, but using cash to pay for stuff seems to have fallen by the wayside for those small things that would generate a pocket full of change in a day.  On the other hand, if you have a credit card that pays you cash back, you can rack up a pretty hefty reward balance over time.  Let the rewards pile up long enough and you might find you have enough to pay for the Robar customization package so really the only cash outlay was the base pistol.  I love it when a plan comes together.

Robar was able to turn the gun around pretty quickly so technically, I received my birthday gun early this year.  That gave me some time to order up some holsters and spend some quality range time with the pistol before my birthday.  I did actually go to the range on my birthday and I look along the original CW45 and the new P45 for some head to head shooting comparison.

Originally, I though I would like to try a tuckable hybrid holster for the CW45 so I ordered a Comp-tac Minotaur MTAC Holster that works best at 4 to 5 O'clock.  At first I wasn't really excited about the holster, but I think that will change as cooler weather comes and I find that I'm wearing a coat more frequently.  I ended up buying a second kydex shell in order to use the Comp-tac holster with both the CW45 and P45.

What I have been using most frequently is a selection of clip-less in the waistband holsters from Remora.  One nice feature is the holsters work equally well with the CW45 and P45.  I ended up with 4 different holsters that all fill a specific role.  I like wearing these holsters at at 1 O'clock or 11 O'clock as cross-draw.  The best part of this is that 4 different Remora holsters will run you about the same price as the Comp-tac with two shells.  You can also wear them in the waistband without a belt or with a belt if you happen to be wearing one.

 
Ordering holsters from Remora can be a bit daunting at first.  There are just so many varieties and options available.  I'll walk you though what I learned by ordering from Remora and maybe it might help you decide on one model vs. another if you decide to add a Remora to your holster stash.  I knew I wanted a holster for the range so the 4 RTF-SS fills that need.  The RTF is remora short-hand for reinforced top which keeps the soft holster from collapsing after the draw and aids greatly in reholstering.  SS is shorthand for sweat shield which means the body side of the holster is larger to keep the pistol away from your skin and your sweat off the gun.  I'm not really good about packing along a spare magazine, so I thought I would try the 4P-SS.  That's the holster on the right in the picture above.  It works, but could be improved with some cross stitching across the magazine pocket to keep the mag from dropping down too far into the pocket.  That's something I'm going to have a local shoe repair shop do one of these days.  4-SS is the basic holster for the Kahr P45 and CW45 with the added sweat shield.  The 3C is a brand new size from Remora that was created specifically for the 3.5" barrel Kahrs.  The size 4 fit well, but the 3C has been modified slightly to make the fit a bit tighter.  I like the 3C a bit better than the 4 as it allows a little more grip on the draw.  I will probably get a 3C-SS at some point in the future.  All Remora holsters look similar so the folks at Remora will write the model inside the holster.  That's very helpful if you end up with a few of their holsters. 

I've been asked if the Robar P45 was really worth the money considering I had a CW45 that worked just fine.  I really like the XS Big Dot night sight system on the P45.  It's quite a bit different than the stock CW45 sights and takes a bit to adjust to, but after you make the adjustment you can really see how this sight system shines.  You just put the dot on what you are targeting and make sure the lollypop stick on the rear sight is aligned with the dot and you are good to go.  I thought I would lose some of the fine aiming that you can do with standard patridge sights, but my concerns were unfounded.  On a carry pistol, these sights really appear to be a better solution for rapid deployment and getting the muzzle on target.  The grip stippling feels great and I don't feel compelled to add a grip sleeve like I did on the CW45.  The carry melt done on the slide and controls makes a really big difference.  There are zero sharp edges on the P45.  The only negative I have is the Robar NP3 finish is very slick by design and when the gun is new the slide is very difficult to retract as the recoil springs are at their strongest.  It took many rounds down range to get that spring loosened up a little so retracting the slide was easier.  The plus side of that NP3 slickness is the gun cleans up with a dry rag.  Nothing sticks to that finish.  We'll see how it holds up over time.

One more note on ammo selection.  Both the CW45 and P45 will shoot any 230 grain fmj I've fed them.  They both choke on Hornady TAP 200 grain XTP.  Something about the bullet engages the rifling of the barrel and causes the slide to stop just short of battery or will go into battery, but can't be manually ejected.  I've read that others have the same problem with Kahr 45s and Hornady XTP ammo.  Otherwise, everything else I've tried seems to work just fine.

I thought the CW45 was pretty accurate, but I didn't expect the P45 to be much more accurate.  I was hoping they would be similar.  Hands down the P45 shoots tighter groups.  I made a video that shows me shooting a similar target with both the CW45 and P45.  I used the same ammo in both guns.  The P45 wins.  I also threw in some extra video of me shooting two strings with the P45 at a special target from Gun Fun Shooting Targets.





Happy Halloween!!!  Watch out for zombies. 

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Diamondback DB9 Standard Versus Compensated Barrel Velocity Study

I was asked to evaluate the velocity difference between a standard and compensated Diamondback DB9 barrel.  Diamondback sent one to me for the test and I was told I had the option to return the barrel within a set time period or I could keep the barrel for a price that is less than retail.  Since doing the test would only cost me ammo and I was going to be breaking in a new DB9 EXO anyway, I thought I would jump on the opportunity and see how things played out.

There have been several questions about velocity gain or loss due to two characteristics of the compensated barrel.  The first is that the compensated barrel is longer than the standard.  The second is the compensated barrel has two horizontal cuts across the top to vent gases forward and up during firing to reduce muzzle flip and also recoil impulse.  Since the vents start outside the slide, the standard DB9 slide can be used with the compensated barrel.  The photo below shows two standard DB9 barrels and one compensated DB9 barrel.


Today, I tested 4 different loads through two DB9s.  The all black DB9 had the standard barrel and the DB9 EXO had the compensated barrel installed.  Both pistols are shown below with their matching Size 3 Remora pocket/IWB holsters.

The testing set up was identical to previous velocity testing work.  Those that read the blog frequently will know this set up all too well.  I run a CED M2 chronograph that's about 8 feet from the muzzle.  I shoot from a seated position.

I shot video during the testing today so you could see the results I captured just like you were there with me today.  I cut up the raw video with some title slides to insert breaks between the different tested rounds.



If you don't want to watch the video, then you can just jump to the spreadsheet below that has all the gory details.  The net results from the test showed that there is virtually zero velocity gain or loss between the standard and compensated barrels for the 4 loads tested today.

Really, I'm not surprised by this.  You would think that the longer barrel would delivery higher velocities as longer is usually better for gas expansion and building velocity, but you have to factor in that the added barrel length is also cross cut with vents that provide an escape path for those expanding gases as they enter the added barrel length.

Diamondback claims that their tests show a measurable reduction in recoil with the compensated barrel.  In addition to shooting from a bench, I also tried both barrel types from a standard standing shooting position.  I did this last week and again today.  I can confirm that there is a slight reduction in felt recoil with the compensated barrel.  I literally had to shoot one gun immediately after the other to really appreciate the reduction.

When I was asked to do this testing, I really didn't think I would end up keeping the compensated barrel.  The curious side of me definitely wanted to shake out the barrel and see how it performed, but I ultimately expected to send back the barrel at the end of testing.  What I didn't expect was an improvement in accuracy with the compensated barrel.  The target below was shot last week and got me thinking that perhaps this compensated barrel was a good fit with the new DB9 EXO.  I shot this target in a darkish indoor range and thought it might have been a fluke, but would be worth checking a second time.


Today I shot my standard DB9 (target on left) and the DB9 EXO with Compensated barrel (target on right) again with six rounds pulled from the same box of ammo.  This was RWS 115 grain FMJ that I had never shot before so I had no idea what to expect.  The compensated barrel equipped DB9 again shot a tighter group and clustered the shots more tightly around the point of aim.  These targets were placed out at the 7 yard line.   

So to wrap this up, I will be keeping the compensated barrel and it will be installed in the DB9 EXO.  I can confirm a small reduction in felt recoil with the compensated barrel and also confirm that the combination of my specific DB9 EXO and the compensated barrel I was sent for evaluation delivers better accuracy than my original standard DB9.  Velocity proved to be quite equal with the two barrels so neither a gain or loss of velocity was noted.  So, I'm buying the barrel since reducing felt recoil while improving accuracy has always been "money well spent" in my book.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Final Recap on the AR State Ruger Rimfire Challenge 2011

Back on October 2nd, I first mentioned my intent to participate in this event.  Initial Post  At that time I used a long range weather forcasting iPhone app called WT360pro to call up the Centerton, AR weather forecast for October 22.  The forecast told me low 70's and partly cloudy.  Well I have to say that forecast was right on.  We had great weather all day with clear skies in the morning and clouds that rolled in during the afternoon.  I'm still amazed by how accurate the long range forecasts are from this weather company.

The final scores were posted to the host organization website today.  Nighthawk Custom Training Academy  I was fortunate to have some really excellent shooters in my squad, including the High Lady Winner.  Cheryl Current was the High Lady winner and I just happened to shoot some video of her doing a few runs on one of the stages.  At the time, we had no idea she would win her class.


I ended up just north of middle of the pack.  I can't complain about that performance.  I did really well on the pistol stages, but gave up several spots during the rifle stages due to multiple failures to fire with my SR-22.  If my rifle didn't act up, I may have finished in the top third of the field.  Regardless, I had a great time at the event and am looking forward to participating again next year.

The folks at NCTA, that put on the event, did an excellent job.  Sure there were some things that could have run smoother, but for the first time hosting the event I think it went great.  This really was a family friendly shooting competition that was fun and accessible for novice, experienced, and even the sponsored shooters.

When it came time to give out the prizes, I really liked the way they did it.  Anyone that shot both rifle and pistol stages was guaranteed a prize and your shot at the prize table was done by random drawing.  Obviously, you wanted to be one of the first to the table.  I ended up near the end of the pack, but still got a great prize pack that contained $100 voucher for Warne Scope Mounting Products, a Ruger 22/45 magazine, Springfield Armory T-shirt, and some other little goodies from Brownells and Gunfun Shooting Targets.  I shot a quick video of the prize table.  It was loaded with great stuff for kids and adults.


 I happened to run into another event competitor when out to dinner tonight.  He also agreed that the event went really well and that it was a fun competition.  So kudos to Ruger for dreaming up the event and also to Nighthawk Custom Training Academy for putting out the effort to host the event.  My hero of the day is Geof Schroeder, who tirelessly entered in all 400+ scoresheets and put out the results recap.  You da man Geof!!!

Saturday, October 22, 2011

A Long Day - Ruger Rimfire Challenge

We started with the Shooter's Meeting this morning at 8:00am.  I finally pulled out of the parking lot at 6:30pm tonight.  What an awesome day of shooting.  I really can't say enough good things about the match today.  It was a great experience for me and it reminds me of all the good things I miss about competitive shooting and the people you meet and compete with at events like this.

I saw a preliminary score sheet for the Pistol event, but the Rifle event probably won't be out until tomorrow via email so for now I'll just say that I am tickled to death with my Pistol standings considering the field of shooters that attended the event.  Rifle gave me some problems due to my equipment.  I'm really disappointed in my Ruger SR-22.  I don't think the trigger was resetting properly when firing at high speed.

So rather than dwell on the negative, I'm focusing on the positive.  Here's a short video that pretty much summarizes my experience today ,which was constant and measurable improvement.  Just in case you don't hear the RO call out the times, they were 6.62, 5.56, and 4.72.  I had shaved almost 2 seconds off my time after only 3 runs.    


I've got a big day planned around another hobby tomorrow so I'll do a full event recap once I have the final scores.  I'm off to bed with the echos of ringing steel still rattling around in my head.

Great Event So Far

We've been at it since 8:30am this morning and so far so good. I believe we have about 60 shooters representing a few different states. Skill levels are very mixed with many sponsored shooters all the way to A few Jrs. I'm having fun and loving the sound of ringing steel. Currently waiting on the squad ahead of us to finish so we can shoot the last stage of pistols and take a break for lunch. Rifle match starts after lunch.


Friday, October 21, 2011

Tomorrow is The Day

Tomorrow morning it's Ruger Rimfire Challenge day. Last Sunday I got the rifle sighted in and both guns are clean and ready to go. I'm charging the batteries on the video and SLR cameras so I can document the festivities tomorrow. It should be a good time. Really looking forward to the event.

On another subject, the blog went over 25,000 visits today. That's more than 5,000 visits a month. I really didn't know what to expect when I started the blog back in June. I think it's pretty neat that so many folks have stopped by to read through the blog. There's so much more to come. I just need to find the time to do my work and report my findings. Maybe it will get easier when winter gets here.

Velocity testing and terminal ballistics testing are the two big areas I really want to focus on.  I guess I'm just a numbers geek at heart or maybe I should have been a lab technician instead of going into business as a career.  A key component if the terminal ballistics testing is my catch box.  I made really great progress on building the box until I got to the point where I need to find someone with a router that can make 3 cuts for me.  I don't mind buying tools, but I've gone this long without a router so I think buying one for this project would be a waste.  Also, I'd like someone to do that job that knows how to use the router vs. me trying to learn on this expensive plastic stock.


I'm really pleased how this turned out.  After the routing cuts are done, I can get it glued together and start expansion testing more loads.  When finished, the bullet trap will be 46" long so I can definitely test FMJ penetration along with HP expansion.  I'll probably start with .380 and 9mm.  Maybe also do a head to head comparison on the 3 major maker's .38 Special +P 158 grain LSWCHP loads.  There is just so much I want to test and this trap will enable me to do as many tests per day as I care to do, but I have to get it finished first.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Heizer Updates Their Website

This morning I got word through my blog comments that Heizer updated their website with a whole bunch of new info on the DOUBLETAP.  Updated Heizer Firearms Website 10-17-2011  They now have the real dimensions up and I was close on the height and width, but the length was way off.  They are putting 3 inch barrels on the DOUBLETAP so my guess wasn't even close.  The full published specs are interesting because now we see 9mm will also be offered along with the 45 ACP.  Not sure if both frames will be available for both calibers.  3.9" is exactly the same height as the Kahr P380 so that's one point of reference.  Nothing I know of is .665" thin.  The Kel Tec P32 comes closest at .75".  The Diamondback DB9 is 5.6" long so there's one more point of reference.  14 oz empty weight jumps to 17 oz when you add 4 rounds of 230 grain FMJ ammo.  Availability in early 2012.  I'm still interested
 
DoubleTap™ Specifications:
Caliber
Weight
Width
Length
Height
Barrel
Frame
MSRP
.45 ACP, 9MM
14 oz Titanium (empty)
.665 inches
5.5 inches
3.9 inches
3.0 inches
Titanium or Aluminum
TBD

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Innovation and The Dead Pool

When it comes to pocket pistols, I love new stuff.  Over the last 10 years there has just been an explosion of small pistol innovation.  It's really hard to keep up with all the new and innovative products and design work going on right now unless you are an industry insider and have the chance to attend the many trade shows throughout the year.  I'm not that lucky so I have to rely on others for the early word and then you can usually pick up more details on the web.

Earlier this week I read about a company called Heizer Defense LLC out of St. Louis, MO USA Earth.  Gotta love how they included the planet in their location.  So far so good with Heizer Defense in my book.  They have a website Heizer Defense with a single picture of their DOUBLETAP two shot pistol.  I'm not even going to use derringer to describe this pistol even through it does have a capacity of two shots in an over under barrel configuration.  It appears to be more innovative than your run of the mill derringer so I won't saddle this pistol with that description.

Intrigued by the picture and their description below, I thought I would do some reverse engineering on the photo and see if I could estimate the dimensions.  From their website, Heizer tells us the following about their new pistol.  Sounds pretty good to me.

"HEIZER Defense has developed DOUBLETAP™ the world’s smallest and lightest .45 ACP conceal carry pistol on the market today.
Only DOUBLETAP delivers, not once, but twice over! That’s LIFE ASSURANCE!
Titanium Frame with MIL-STD finish resists corrosion.
2 rounds in chamber and integral grips houses an additional 2 spare rounds.
Ported barrel reduces muzzle flip and recoil.
Slim, no-snag and hammerless design for easy pocket carry.
Thumb latch auto ejects spent rounds.
5 Patents pending including double-action trigger."

So here's what the DOUBLETAP looks like after doing some estimation based on the one true measurement that we know to be true and that is the bore diameter must be at least .451" to acomodate the .45ACP cartridge.  Building from that base, I estimate a height of 3.25" and a length of 3.5".  It also looks like the width will be well under .75".  I have no guess on weight but I am very pleased with the mention of a titanium frame in the description.
My next step was to print off my image in my estimated "life size" dimensions and see how it stacked up with other popular pocket pistols.  The DOUBLETAP picture is flanked by an LWS380 on the left and a Rohrbaugh R9s on the right.  It just seems to fit right in between the two of them.  

I'm cautiously optimistic that we will indeed see the DOUBLETAP come to market.  I can see adding one or maybe two to the collection/carry rotation if they aren't priced way out of this world crazy high.  It's on my radar now so I'll be keeping my eyes on the website to see if additional details are updated in the coming weeks and months.  Maybe I'll even have the chance to blog my review one day.

Shifting gears a bit, my excitement about the Heizer Defense DOUBLETAP reminded me that I had not checked one of my other "on the radar" guns in quite some time.  That gun was the MSAR Archangel.  MSAR is MicroTech Small Arms Research and back in 2009 they caused quite a buzz when they attended a show in Phoenix and displayed their Archangel 9mm pistol.  At 7.1 oz, it promised to be the lightest 9mm pistol on the market.  Aside from the trigger, it didn't look too bad in the various photos on the internet.  Unfortunately, it appears that MSAR filed for Chapter 11 in July of 2011 and the Archangel pistol project has been shelved.  Since 2009, I pinged MSAR twice for an update on the status of the pistol, but never got a respose so I assumed the project was dead.  I guess I should cancel my standing order with my local MSAR dealer.  =(  Move this gun to the dead pool.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Good Results at the Range

I did have a chance to get out to the range and do my preliminary sight in on my guns for the Ruger Rimfire Challenge coming up later this month.  I wanted to get both my pistol and rifle set, but the Range Master came along and told me that I couldn't shoot the rifle on the pistol range.  So, I only got one group done with the rifle but it was a large single hole group centered above point of aim so I'm not really concerned.  The pistol was a different story.  Since targets will be placed between 4 yards and 24 yards, I had to find a good zero that would have me on target for the close stuff, but still shoot close to point of aim for the longer range stuff.

I'm pleased with this set up.  The targets are 6" paper plates.  The real match targets will be 6", 8", and 10" steel plates.  The bottom target was shot at 8 yards - 5 rounds.  The middle target at 15 yards - 10 rounds.  The top target was shot at 25 yards - 5 rounds.  The majority of the targets will be set between 8 and 15 yards so the only real adjustment I need to make will be to hold high on the close in targets.  The rest should be right on with a center of target hold.

Unfortunately, it was very windy on Saturday and I didn't get to shoot many clays.  The wind was in my face so the targets were blowing off the hooks I had them resting on.  I did manage to shoot one bank for speed, but it didn't go very well.  I had them in close and I think I was shooting under them.  I'll have to remember to hold high on the targets the next time around.

I never did get a chance to get over to the rifle range.  It seems that everyone must be working on their deer rifles for the season.  There wasn't even a spot in the lot for me to park.  Worst case, I go to my fallback indoor range to get the rifle set up.  They have no problems with .22 rifles being shot in their pistol range.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Ruger Rimfire Challenge Prep - Week 2

In my last post, I mentioned that I had about 3 weeks to get ready to shoot in my local Ruger Rimfire Challenge event coming up on the 22nd of October.  I made some progress on my pre-event checklist so I thought I would post an update.

I got my entry form and check out in the mail this week but I had to decide what I was going to shoot as competitors will be classified by their gear.  I really wanted to go with iron sights for the pistol portion, but in the end I decided to shoot Open Class for both rifle and pistol.  Both guns started life as Rugers, but I made a few modifications (parts swaps really) to each along the way.  The rifle is one of the new SR-22s and the pistol is a Mark II frame with a Volquartsen LLV action.  Both triggers have been Volquartsen-ized with the target trigger components.  I've used both of these quite a bit so I know they run well.  Both have red dot sights.


As I studied the match stages, I was happy to see a mix of steel plates and clay targets.  I love shooting clays so it was off to Home Depot to scrounge up the parts for a Clay Target holder.  I built this in about 30 minutes last weekend and it's perfect for my practice needs.  Total cost was about $5 as I had the T's and elbows left over from another project.  It breaks down for travel.  As long as I shoot the bottom bank of 5 first, this should work out great for practice.  All I need to do is put it out on a drop cloth and cleaning up the clay pieces will be a breeze.  I also picked up some 6" and 9" paper plates to substitute for the 6", 8", and 10" steel plates they will be using for the event.


The last thing I needed to decide on was my ammo.  I had 1000 rounds of CCI Mini-mag HP of the same lot number on hand so it's going to be my practice and match ammo.  I've always had good luck with Mini Mags.  They seem a bit more powerful than the bulk packed Federal, Winchester, and Remington so I have high confidence that they will cycle both guns with authority.


The only other thing I did this week was to spend some time holding my pistol out at arms length for several minutes per day.  At 48 oz fully loaded, it can get heavy after a few minutes pass.  I want to be sure my muscles are properly prepared.

Tomorrow afternoon it's off to the range to sight in with my ammo choice and start breaking some of those clay targets.  If I can get to the point where I'm consistently breaking the clays at 8, 16, and 24 yards with both guns I will be more than prepared for the real match.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

A Departure From The Normal Blogs - Ruger Rimfire Challenge

When I started this blog 4 months ago, I really had no idea how much work and time would go into the creation of the content that goes into the posts.  I know there are many bloggers that just repost the content of others they happen to find interesting.  I've had some of them point people to my blog and I appreciate that.  My goal was to only post my own created content in my blog so it's become increasingly difficult to find the time to make fresh posts.

All in all, to be sitting at almost 22,000 views in 4 months is pretty exciting.  I've also received a bunch of emails from blog readers letting me know they appreciated the information I was able to provide.  Since I'm not "sponsored" or ad supported, this is the payoff for me.  It's nice to be appreciated.

I've still got a ton of ideas for new blog posts, but again it's just difficult to find the time to do the work needed to create quality posts.  They will get done, but it's just taking longer than I had originally anticipated.

I was in a gun store the other day and overheard two people talking about the Ruger Rimfire Challenge.  They said there was going to be a local match in the area.  I couldn't wait to get back to the house and find out more about it.  As it turns out, the match is scheduled for October 22 and it's less than 10 miles away.  I've decided that I need to take part in this event.  I've got all the gear and plenty of ammo on hand so why not take advantage of the opportunity.

I've got 3 weeks to get my gear in order and get some quality practice time in.  Along the way I need to decide on which classes I'm going to shoot, which .22s I'm going to use, read through the rules, spend some time learning the course of fire.  I also need to get my match registration sent off to the event sponsors to secure my spot for the event.  Doing all this will probably consume most of my free time over the next 3 weeks so I'll be updating the blog with my progress as we count down to competition day.

Ideally, I would like to give a run down on the competition and the event sponsors/coordinators after the event has happened.  Competitions can be daunting for many folks.  I've done a fair share of competitive shotgunning in the ATA previously.  I've also shot a few dozen local IDPA and .22 fun shoots at a local range.  This event promises fun for everyone and is advertised as a family type event.  I'm anxious to see if this ends up being true.

I went out to WeatherTrends360 to check the weather forecast for the event and it told me partly cloudy and highs in the low 70's for the day so we should have good weather for the event.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

A Look at the .32 ACP and .32 NAA

Back in the early 1990's, when someone mentioned a mouse gun, my immediate thought went to the Walther TPH, Seecamp LWS32, or Taurus PT-22.  These tiny vest pocket sized guns were usually offered in .22, .25, and .32 calibers.  I always wanted a Seecamp, but this was pre-internet boom and I had no idea how to track down a local dealer so I could get on the 1 year plus waiting list for one.  I did have a Taurus PT-22 for a few months, but it was very unreliable in feeding and firing.  By the end of the 90's I had one small gun left in my collection.  A stainless and alloy framed Colt Mustang Pocket-lite .380.  I didn't pay much attention to mouse guns at all from 1998 to about 2007.

Here's a quick picture comparing the rounds discussed in this blog entry.  From left to right we have:

 .22 Long Rifle
.32 ACP HP
.32 ACP FMJ
.32 NAA HP
.380 ACP










I'm really not 100% clear on how I stumbled on the Seecamp website, but one day I found myself there and clicked through to their Seecamp owners forum.  I started catching up on all the old posts and found myself getting sucked back into the quest for a Seecamp of my very own.  I also started reading up on all the new mouse guns that had come out over the previous 12 years and all the new makers and models available.  A few old models like the Colt Mustang and Walther TPH were now gone, but for every model that was discontinued, there were many more to take it's place.

Prior to getting my Seecamp LWS32, I had never seen a .32 ACP cartridge.  In my small world, pistol ammo came in .22 LR with the next step up being .380 ACP.  While I was shooting my Seecamp, I came to understand and appreciate the .32 ACP for what it had been in the past and where it fit in our current times.  According to what I've read the .32 ACP cartridge was designed by John Moses Browning and commercially released in 1899.  Through the last century the cartridge has been used by police forces and civilians.  The concealed carry trend gave the .32 ACP a lift in popularity in recent years with several new lightweight pocket sized pistols coming on the market.

I recently had an opportunity to do some data gathering on the .32 ACP.  Along the way, what started as a simple exercise to chronograph some different rounds from a Kel-Tec P-32, grew into something much bigger so this blog entry is really the culmination of several months of activity.  It may seem scattered, but the common thread is the .32 ACP cartridge.

Initially the plan was to do a .32 ACP ammo study similar to the .380 ACP study from July.  While I was running my initial tests with a Kel-Tec P-32, I got word that Bersa was putting out a limited number of their Thunder models in .32 ACP.  Having recently rediscovered Bersas, I decided I should get my hands on one and include it with the Kel-Tec testing.  It's really a fantastic little firearm.  Aside from the obvious good looks, it come with windage adjustable sights and a factory 10 round magazine that brings the capacity to 11 rounds of .32 ACP in a convenient sized carry package.  It's been a reliable feeder of anything it's been fed, delivers reasonable accuracy, and it's a joy to shoot with very little recoil. 


The Kel-Tec P-32, I've had for some time now.  It's the lightest pistol I have ever had my hands on.  It holds 7 rounds in the flush fitting magazine for a total capacity of 8 rounds and weighs in at 10.3 ounces fully loaded. It lacks target type sights, but the rudimentary sights milled into the slide are satisfactory for it's intended purpose.


Rapid fire at 7 yards on 5" pie plates, really demonstrates the value of the .32 ACP cartridge.  With some practice and attention to trigger technique, it's quite possible to put rounds on target quickly since you have less muzzle flip and recoil to counteract after each shot.  A Bersa grouping is shown on the left and a Kel-Tec grouping is shown on the right.  


I've mentioned the Seecamp LWS32 earlier in the blog.  I did not include the Seecamp in my testing for two reasons.  The first is that it comes with NO sights.  "Aiming" is accomplished by practicing a technique called point shooting.  Since I was running rounds over my chronograph, I didn't want to risk an errant shot putting my sky screens out of business.  The second reason is that the Seecamp was designed around one specific cartridge, the Winchester Silver Tip.  I will get into that a bit more later in the blog.

Have you ever read about the new .32 cartridge that was developed by North American Arms and Cor Bon?  Dubbed the .32 NAA, the cartridge is made by necking down a .380 ACP case to accept the .32 bullet.  Very recently, the folks at Diamondback Firearms released their DB 320.  The DB 320 uses all the same parts as the DB 380 except for a barrel that is bored and chambered for the .32 NAA cartridge.  If you own a DB 380, you can purchase a .32 NAA barrel and instantly convert your pistol to use the new round.  Switching back is as simple as removing the .32 NAA barrel and reinstalling your .380 ACP barrel.  It's like having two guns in one.  Since I was testing and reporting on .32 ACP, I thought I would also test out the .32 NAA while I was at it.  The photo below shows the .32 NAA barrel installed in a DB 380.  The .380 ACP barrel is shown resting on the frame of the pistol for illustrative purposes.


The spreadsheet below has all the chronograph results from my testing.  Click on the picture to bring up a larger version of the sheet that is actually legible.  As expected, the Bersa's longer barrel gave every round the chance to build up greater velocity and energy.  Three varieties of ammo were not tested in the Bersa because I used up all the rounds breaking in the Bersa a few weeks ago.  I did have several varieties on hand for comparative testing.


If spreadsheets aren't your thing, I plotted the data on the charts below.  The charts show the comparative energy of each round and are listed from highest to lowest.  The big surprise for me was the Corbon loading.  Corbon's claim to fame is high velocity rounds that are loaded within industry specifications for pressure.  Their tested round was defiantly the highest velocity and highest energy round in the test.  Sellier and Bellot's 73 grain FMJ offering was the fastest and highest energy loading of that type.

I also found it interesting that Fiocchi loads their Extrema round with Hornady's XTP bullet to a much higher velocity than Hornady does in their own Custom line of ammunition.    

 
My results with the two .32 NAA rounds through the Diamondback conversion barrel left me a bit mystified.  To my knowledge, only Corbon offers .32 NAA ammunition so that's all I could get my hands on.  When comparing the fastest .32 ACP FMJ load through the Kel-Tec P-32 against the Corbon .32 NAA FMJ load, there is an obvious velocity increase and energy gain even though the .32 NAA bullet is a couple grains lighter.  Corbon advertises 1000fps velocity from their FMJ load, which was realized today on my chronograph.  The confusing part for me was their 60 grain HP load falling well short of their 1200fps advertised velocity.  The velocity improvement over their .32 ACP load in the Kel-Tec P-32 is so slight that I will say it's just down right disappointing and not worth the cost of proprietary ammo.

I will add that the Corbon .32 NAA HP load was incredibly soft shooting.  It felt much more like shooting a rim fire pistol than a center fire pistol.  Perhaps they had a batch go out with light charges and that's the lot I received.  


My DB 380 is the discontinued MS (milled sights) version.  The sights are milled directly into the slide so my accuracy isn't as good as it would be with a pistol that has target sights.  I would say the sights are very similar to those on the Kel-Tec P-32.  The target below shows two groups of 7 rounds each of the .32 NAA FMJ loading.  The target on the right is 7 rounds of the .32 NAA HP load.  The reduced recoil of the HP load is demonstrated by the reduced vertical stringing of my shots.  I'd like to say there are 7 holes on the right target, but I can only count 6.  I must have shanked one shot.


There is one more advantage of the .32 NAA over the .32 ACP.  The .32 ACP is a semi-rimmed cartridge.  Semi rimmed cartridges work best in revolvers where the rim helps prevent the cartridge from slipping into the revolver cylinder.  When semi-rimmed cartridges are held in a pistol magazine, they can shift forward and backward during the firing, recoil, and loading processes in such a way where the cartridge rims will get locked together and render the pistol incapable of feeding another round into the chamber.  This condition is called Rim Lock.  Since the .380 ACP is a rimless case, and that's the basis for the .32 NAA cartridge, rim lock is not an issue.

Up above in my initial spreadsheet you may have noticed a column called OAL.  OAL is an abbreviation for the cartridge Over All Length.  You can measure it with a dial or veneer caliper, which I have done for the rounds I had on hand.  In the chart below you can see that current production ammo falls roughly into two size groups.  The first is rounds measuring .910" or less.  The rounds have bullets with flat or hollow point noses.  Earlier I mentioned that the Seecamp was designed around the Winchester Silver Tip round.  Seecamp gets around the rim lock issue by installing a filler in the back of their magazines that keeps rounds longer than .910" from fitting in their magazines.  With less front to back room for rounds in the magazine to slide, the opportunity for cartridge rims to "lock" together is minimized.  I'd like to say eliminated in place of minimized, but one never knows for sure.  Kel-Tec offers a similar rim lock prevention device for their magazines.  Rounds longer than .960" are less prone to rim lock in standard .32 ACP magazines because they fill the front to back space within the magazine and therefore do not slide during firing.  Rim lock is again minimized.  There are a couple of rounds that fall in the no man's land between .910" and .960", while I did not experience rim lock with either round, it would be wise to test these rounds extensively in your specific pistol and magazines before putting them into service.  I've only experienced rim lock on one occasion and that was at the practice range before I installed the rim lock prevention kit in my Kel-Tec magazine.  If you ever experience rim lock, you will never want to experience it again.
 

Ideally, I would also include some terminal ballistics data with this entry.  Unfortunately, I'm still working on my bullet trap.  It's been a long design and development process, but I'm getting closer to the end goal every week.  I did manage to catch a couple .32 ACP bullets over the last month.  I wanted to test them all, but I keep destroying my prototype traps.

My first "catch" was a Speer Gold Dot .32 ACP that was fired through 2 layers of denim and it penetrated through my entire catch box before coming to rest in a water jug I had backing my catch box.  No noticeable expansion versus the unfired round on the left.

My second catch was a Corbon 60 grain .32 ACP.  This round penetrated through 2 layers of denim and 16.5" inches of media in my catch box before coming to rest.  Expansion was excellent.

If you've stuck with me to the end here, I hope you enjoyed the post and possibly even got an idea or two from it.  The .32 ACP may be 112 years old now, and while other cartridges of similar age may be gone into obscurity, this little guy keeps right on rolling along.  There are some very small and light pistols available for the cartridge and it's lighter recoil may appeal to those that find larger cartridges to be too punishing.

As far as the .32 NAA goes, it's a new guy on the block that was supposed to deliver performance greater than the .380 ACP (according to Wikipedia).  From my limited testing, I don't find that to be the case, but I'm keeping an open mind for the moment.  Perhaps I just got some bad boxes of Cor Bon HP ammo.  Regardless, anytime I can get a conversion barrel for a pistol I currently own, I'm a happy man.  Maybe I'll do a blog about conversions one day.