Saturday, June 28, 2014

Off to the Range

So because Keads built a new AR, and because Tam took hers out to shoot, I decided that I'd take mine out to the range and burn off some of the last of the miserable frangible rounds that I'd been blessed with for the recent Ron Avery/Keith Garcia class.

Day 2

I set up on the 400M line at our range and fired for effect at the steel target down by the berm, but alas, with the frangible stuff, you get no "CLANG!" feedback like you do with regular ammo; the projectile just disintegrates on impact, and all you can do it watch the area around the target. If you see a dust cloud from the berm, it means "miss", and if you see no dust, that's probably a hit on the steel.

I hit for the most part, thanks to Saint ACOG, but I had just enough misses to confirm my theory about the dust clouds down range. I'll be glad when this ammo's gone as it was mis-feeding even here on the static range once the rifle got hot.

After playing here for a bit, I went over to the pistol line to try out my newest acquisition.
To be fair, I didn't really want or need this pistol, but one day Aaron of The Shekel calls me up all excited.
"Hey, (name redacted to avoid embarrassing them) has slightly used M&P 40s for $299. You need to get one quick!"

"But I don't need another .40," I told him. "And besides, I'm broke and about to go on vacation."

"But all the cool kids have these," he insisted. "You're like the only one who doesn't. Besides, that's why we have credit cards."

And so because I'm a shameless lemming when it comes to buying guns, I ordered one of these from (name redacted to avoid embarrassing them), only to have them ship it to the wrong customer, some dealer out in New Mexico. Now I do like this wholesaler, and this is the first time I've ever had a problem with them, so I'm willing to accept that mistakes happen just so long as they make it right, which they did. Of course by that time, I was gone on my trip, and when I came back, the dealer that I ordered it through had fallen out with the staff at the range where he did business and was now barred from the property, causing me even more hassle and delay before I finally got this pistol in my hands. But it was worth it, because what came was a pistol that was so lightly used as to be virtually unfired. There was no wear on the feed ramp or the barrel's finish, and the mainspring still had plenty of the blue grease that you typically see only from the factory. An oily cleaning patch run through the barrel came out almost spotless, so I'm figuring that this "used" pistol was never actually issued to anyone, or if it was, it wasn't carried or shot. There's not a mark on the exterior anywhere, either, although it is old enough that it's night sights are about done.
So I shot it in today. I'd brought 150 rounds to give it a decent workout despite only having one magazine and no holster for it, but the pistol line was filled with two families and their kids, and the kids were all firing full-sized rifles from the tables so the rest of us pistol shooters were stuck just putting our targets out at 25 yards and remaining behind the tables as well. Shooting like this got a bit dull, so after firing 50 rounds, I called it a day. But the pistol fired flawlessly and shot a nice group, albeit a bit high on the target. As this pistol is new to me, I'm willing to accept that I'm to blame for the uniformly high hits. They were still almost all A-Zone hits, but not quite where I wanted them so I'll bring it back and work with it more when the range isn't stacked to capacity with other shooters. I do like it though, except for a rather muddy trigger reset. I think I'll keep it and probably even learn to like it.
Now it's showing a bit of wear.

All said and done, I'm happy.


  1. Apex trigger... :-)

    1. Yeah, getting that recommendation from a lot of folks.

  2. I will pile on for the Apex stuff.

  3. None of mine have Apex triggers, but if it makes you feel better to put parts in the gun, knock yourself out. ;)

    The blue stuff on the spring is, I believe, blue paint so they can quickly tell the .40/.357 RSAs from the 9x19 units.

    1. Just stripped a 9 M&P VTAC here. The blue stuff is on the spring. On on half of it anyway.

    2. Huh. (Should tell you how often my M&P 9 gets cleaned...)

      Hang on.

      Okay, yeah, my carry gun has the blue paint on the front 1/4th of the spring, too, along with a truly amazing amount of carbon fouling on the TRS which I somehow missed last time I cleaned it.

      Well, there goes my first theory. Maybe the blue paint is on the front part of the spring so Johnny Police Cadet has an easier time being instructed on which way to put it in the gun?

      Maybe I should contact Smif and ask. :o

  4. Told ya you'd like it. Congrats.

  5. Anonymous10:09 AM


    Hardly worth the trip!