Saturday, August 15, 2015

Favorite guns. Why?

I was mulling the gun room this morning and got to thinking about a few of the firearms therein that are particularly special to me for various reasons. These are four of them.

My Springfield Armory 1911A1. My first handgun. Bought new the day I turned 21. Patrick Sweeney talked me into buying it back when he was just a gunsmith in one of Detroit's suburbs. I wanted to build my own on an Essex frame, just like a magazine article said I could. Pat, being wiser, showed me several failed DIY guns in his shop and pushed me in the direction of this new 1911A1 for just over $300. It was a lot of money back then, especially to me, but I've been grateful ever since. I love this pistol.

My Springfield Armory M-1A. Bought back in 1988, when Papa Bush enacted the first "Assault Weapons Ban", I dropped $700 on this one as one of those gun shops that charges way more than market-price because I was young and did not know any better. But the panic was on, and I got the last one in their store--the display model off their wall. (And I chose it over an H&K 91 on one side of it and a genuine FN-FAL on the other, both of which were going for about the same price.)
I shot this gun for fun and in competition for many years, including the President's 100 600-yard match at Camp Perry in the 2001 National Matches. I haven't done much with it in years. I need to change that.

Another 1980's purchase, this Ruger 10-22 has accompanied me on hikes and camping trips all over the country and it's stock bears the scars to show it. (I have a new stock for it--I just don't want to switch it yet...Lots of memories in that stock damage, and it's just cosmetic anyway.)

Ithaca Model 37. This old 12 gauge was a gift from me to my father one year. Made in 1968, it had been a sheriff's dept. gun before they sold it surplus and I bought it for him a quarter of a century ago. With this gun, we went hunting and clay shooting together, though not nearly enough times. Now he's gone and it's back with me. But it'll always be his gun.

These four are cherished parts of my collection, practically members of the family. Each is special to me and I'll never part with any of them. How about you? What do you have that you have a bond with that goes beyond mere dollars and cents?


  1. Yep. I have a few. My M1, a gift from my Garand collecting Father in law. He had quite a few, and I was beyond honored when he gave me this one. He has since gone to the range in the sky, so this one is special.
    My Smith and Wesson model 28, my first self purchased "real " gun, bought new in 88.
    My Remington model 580 22 single shot, given to me by my old man in 68 when I was 10. He is also gone now...
    And finally my "new" formerly cocooned Number 4 Mk2 Enfield. How often do you get a new, untouched no fooling battle rifle?

  2. I have my 1911A1, a daily carry piece, and wouldn't trade it for nuthin'. The Springfield Armory M1 Garand my wife & daughters gave me for Christmas a couple years ago - a sweet, accurate rifle if there ever was one. Those are the two that won't go anywhere.

  3. Good question.

    I don't have many guns (lost most of them in that damn boating accident!), so I guess my favorites would be "all of them".

    I truly enjoy my Kimber 1911. Like you, it was the first brand-new gun I ever bought.

    And I enjoy shooting my Marlin 336 in 30-30. A joy to shoot, and more accurate than I am.

    Last one would be my "Old Dependable Remington 870.

    I've taken several "Basic", several more "Advanced" and 5 "Tactical" classes with it, and fired a couple of thousand rounds through it.

    And never once has it failed to go "Bang" when I pull the trigger.

  4. In order of importance to me, it'd probably be:
    My S&W 27-2 6" bbl. It was my grandpap's hunting sidearm for years. When he departed, it became mine. Absolute -last- firearm I would -ever- part with, and that will only be on my deathbed.
    My Winchester 1897 16ga, manufactured 1900. A gift from my parents some years back, even the shop that sold it didn't know how unusual it was. An early example of the first year of production for the 16 gauges in this model, it's still a fine wing-shooting shotgun in excellent condition, and it takes down for transport or storage.
    My stainless Ruger Security Six 6" in .357 Magnum. My first revolver ever, given to my by my parents on my 21st birthday. It formerly occupied the first spot on the list, but with that fine Smith taking its primacy AND its caliber, it's been bumped to #3.
    Next would be the S&W I-frame .32 that my great-grandfather purchased and carried, some time in the 1930's to 40's. I never knew the man, so while important to me, it only rates #4 in the list.

    I have guns that are favorites to shoot, but this is my short list of what I will not EVER part with.

  5. 1911s and Ithaca 37s hold a place in my heart, too!


  6. Agree with GiA. Back when I used to hunt pheasants regularly, a couple of southpaws used 37s - I always thought it was a good design, and because it debuted a decade after his death, often overlooked as being based on JMB's 1915 patent.

    1. Thanks! My first one was AZ State prison surplus 'Deerslayer Police Special'! 20".
      Bought a second one years later after I'd sold the first.

  7. I have a Remington 20 gauge that is based off the Browning a5 pattern. That was the gun that I grew up shooting. My grandfather lent it to me as a boy, and when I was old enough to get my own he told me to keep it safe for him. When my other grandfather died I inherited a US army stamped savage 12 gauge based on the a5 pattern. So now I have two knock off a5's, one from each grandfather, that I will never trade anything for. Also I have my father's m&p 45. It was his duty gun that his office has retired.

  8. Some things there is no price on... Just sayin...

  9. Nice selection there ML. They are more that tools. They connect you to places, times, and people.

  10. In chronological order.
    My Mossberg 142A, 22LR. Got it from my folks for Christmas in 1976, after a "treasure hunt" of sorts to find it. The hunt is as memorable as the rifle is. Many small critters found themselves to the table as a result of its accuracy.
    My dad's Korean War 1911. Nothing more needs said about it.
    My 30-06Enfield, built by Ed Pavuk. Heavy, ugly, and shoots .50 MOA.
    And my S&W 629-5. Bought to celebrate my divorce from my second wife, and has provided me with much therapy thereafter.