Breaking It Down, Part 2

Sum Of Its Parts

Sum Of Its Parts

In Breaking It Down, I talked about some of the take-down .22 rifles that are available on the new and used market.

But there have been a lot of factory take-down centerfire rifles over the years.  This article in Outdoor Life has a good summary.  A lot of take-down hunting rifles have been offered to consumers.

Marlin had the Model 1893.  Winchester had the Models 1885, 1886, 1892, 1894, 55, and 94, and offered take-down Model 70s through U.S. Repeating Arms custom shop. Savage had a take-down Model 99.  Browning offered the BLR.  The Japanese even made a take-down version of their Arisaka 99 for paratroopers.  And you can get modern take-down hunting rifles from Sauer, Blaser, and Dakota Arms.

In addition, there are plenty of custom shops that will convert a standard hunting rifle into a take-down version.

When it comes to non-hunting take-down rifles, the AR-15 platform is the most obvious example.  While not expressly marketed as a take-down rifle, all you have to do is pop both of the pins and voila!  The space savings of a broken down AR-15 is mainly in length.  The height of the grip and the carry-handle/front sight (for non-flattops) make a disassembled AR-15 kind of bulky.

Silly Gun Trends

Following Trends

Following Trends

A couple of recent gun trends have me puzzled.  Not at the trends, which are simple enough concepts.  But the fact that they are trends at all is baffling.

Zombies.  It started as an offshoot of the zombie trend in entertainment.  “What gun would you choose to fight zombies?”  It was an interesting enough hypothetical, and it spawned plenty of lively discussions on the merits and flaws of various guns.

But then the trend bought a boat, hunted down the biggest shark it could find, and jumped over that shark.  Zombie targets?  Sure, I get it.  Why not?  I have shot at plenty of non-bullseye targets over the years.  It’s fun to break up the monotony.

Soon came Zombie Ammo from Hornady.  Zombie Knives from Gerber and KaBar (and a zombie pistol bayonet too!).  Zombie Ammo CansZombie red-dot scopes from EO-Tech, and traditional scopes (from Leupold!) with Zombie reticles.  Zombie gun cleaning kits. “Zombie Green” rifle stocks, pistol grips, and firearm finish.  A Zombie reloading setup.

The manufacturers wouldn’t design and sell these products unless they had a reasonable expectation that they would sell.  But to whom?

The other trend?  Bump-fire.  If you don’t know what it is, you can read wikipedia’s definition, or watch a video of it.

Using  a sliding stock to provide rapid-fire capability to semi-auto AR-15 rifles does, in fact, let a shooter use up their ammo faster.

What effect does it have on accuracy?  Not a positive one, since the gun would be moving more than it needs to, and the sight picture would be shifting its plane of focus.

How effective is bump-firing while the shooter is moving?  Probably not very effective, since maintaining solid contact between the stock and your shoulder while moving is a challenge even for a non-sliding stock.

I mean, if someone wants to modify a gun to horse around with bump-firing, they can knock themselves out.  As long as they don’t ask me to pay for their ammo.  But the concept seems like a solution without a problem.

Breaking It Down

Come Together

I see that Ruger has a take-down version of the 10/22.  Looks nice.  I have no doubt that reviewers will put it through its paces and let the shooting public know whether or not it upholds the Ruger tradition of reliability & value.  I suspect that it will.

Take-down rifles are a neat concept.  Nearly as store-able as a handgun when they are broken down, but retaining the longer sight radius (and greater accuracy) of a rifle when assembled.  Hollywood loves the concept, from the signature weapon of Francisco Scaramanga in The Man With The Golden Gun (pictured on the left), to the custom-made weapon used by the calculating assassin in The Day Of the Jackal.

The drawback is that it is hard to achieve maximum accuracy with a gun that has to be able to be taken apart easily.  If the complete sighting apparatus (iron or optical) stays with the barrel, that mitigates the potential loss of accuracy, assuming that the sights aren’t banged around.  But Hollywood loves to show you the expert sniper reassembling his (or her) rifle, and re-attaching the scope, immediately followed by some test shots that are dead-on bullseyes.  Anyone who has removed and re-mounted a scope knows that is far-fetched.

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