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BarryinIN last won the day on January 2

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About BarryinIN

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    Making Mac & cheese, changing channel to SpongeBob, etc. Load some ammo and bending Kydex as time allows

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  1. A week or so ago, I heard Herrett’s Stocks were no longer accepting orders, as they were closing soon. Then a few days later I heard similar news about Ahrends Grips. Bankruptcy there. We just lost a good good portion of the custom grip business. It’s hard to compete with rubber, dyed laminate, and Taiwan eBay sellers I guess. I only have a few sets of Herretts and no Ahrends, but have a feeling I'll miss both. They filled the gap between the ones I just mentioned and the multi-hundred dollar custom grips.
  2. Since things are pretty slow around here, here’s an update. The Model 12 is still receiving attention from me. It hasn’t slipped away as old news and been forgotten yet. I painted the front sight green and put a BK grip adapter on it, and made no other changes. http://bkgrips.com With the narrower than standard K frame, aftermarket grips for these are scarce and/or require a long wait. Standard ones leave a gap at the top. The grip adapter was a temporary solution, but will remain permanent. Ahrends Grips was a possibility, but they are going bankrupt. The only other change I can foresee is a possible trigger and hammer change. Both are Model 12-specific parts due to the frame width. The trigger is narrow, but grooved, and grooved triggers are not my preference for DA shooting. Rather than permanently modify original parts on an otherwise unmodified 50 year old gun, I looked online for original parts to attack. What I found was some trigger and hammer sets. If I get one of those pairs, I’ll bob the spare hammer. I have gone back and forth on a hammer bob, but if I get a spare I can try it out without fully committing to it. The gun has been carried in a jacket pocket some this winter, and that hammer grabs like a big fishhook. Admittedly, I overlooked these for a long time, but it’s a pretty interesting gun. I’ve read before that they “carry like a J but shoot like a K” and that’s a good way or putting it. Recoil is similar to an Airweight J frame, but it’s much more controllable to make a follow up shot. It’s even made it to a class already. I attend the same Low-light/Night pistol class each year in December. Since I was using my Kimber K6s in the class this year, I took the Model 12 also. I’ll hold details of the challenges of managing revolvers, flashlights, and speedloaders for another time, but both guns were fine. New toys arriving since the M12 have all been S&Ws. A streak. That’s just how it worked out. A new M&P 15-22 rifle came first, then a nice old Model 39-2 9mm and a somewhat tired looking Model 65 3” RB. It was odd picking up the 65 last week in the shop with empty cases and gun racks.
  3. It’s been almost a year since I posted the above. If the rumors are anywhere close to true, it’s a done deal and we’ll be swimming in them soon. I stand by the above comments. After handling the current King Cobras I think Colt could make a new Python with an action that equals the original Pythons I still don’t think that will be good enough for people. Reviews will love it. Owners of originals will slam it. Some people will buy it. Most will malign it as not being good enough to bear the name, whether they’ve ever touch either an original or new.
  4. I thought they did handle the .50 BMG, but not too long ago read the travel is a little short. Oh well, I don’t have the need anyway. I need to measure, but am guessing the travel is about the same as a Rockchucker. On this large press, that amount of movement looks too little, like it should be scaled up to match the press size. It looks funny this way. I found a new, intact, shellholder plate and have it on the way. This will let me keep four of them in place instead of three, which is not a big thing, but it’s nice to make it “right” for $30. I now have one shellholder (.38/.357) to fit it and have two more coming (.308/.30-06 etc, and 9mm).
  5. It’s old-ish. The company was Hollywood Gun Shop, a pretty small company. I’d say they were about the same size company as Star. They made reloading equipment- mostly presses, dies, and powder measures- from roughly the 50s until only a few years ago. I think this model started production in the mid-60s and lasted for 25-30 years Hollywood outlasted small names like Texan, Bair, and the like, but not by much. It might’ve been in the 80s when they slowed way down, but they didn’t have far to go. I thought they had quit some time in the 90s, but evidently the last owner was still making reloading tools until just a few years ago when a fire made it too hard to continue. I only read that after buying mine. I think that fire was 2013. If it helps to find them online, other Hollywood models were the Junior, Senior (made in both single stage and turret), and Automatic- a progressive. This one is a Universal turret. Another company called Dunbar made very similar-looking models. I don’t know if there was any connection, but when I say they look similar, they look very, very similar BTW, an odd thing about this press is that the ram raises on the UPstroke of the handle. Some presses have been made so this action is reversible, but I don’t see how it can be done on this one.
  6. I have wanted one of these for a while, and have to brag. This thing is a big ‘un. That’s a Rockchucker next to it in the picture. The angle of the picture makes the Hollywood look bigger than it is, but not by much. The head has 12 die stations. I plan to use it for dies that I can set and LEAVE set, like crimp dies for revolver cartridges, a .223 seating die adjusted to 55 FMJs, a .308 seating die adjusted to my heavy bullet load, etc. This will save time and should be more consistent than adjusting them again each and every time I change them out. Shellholders are going to be a speed bump. Shellholders are pretty much standardized between brands now, but not when Hollywood started making their stuff. Although a couple of other companies used the same style, the design is different from what is made now, and I’ll have to scrape some originals up or buy an adapter (RCBS makes one, as does others). These presses were made with a rotating casting that holds four of their shellholders. That let you install four different shellholders that you could instantly switch between. A previous owner “experimented” on this piece and hacked up one spot. The guy I got it from is a machinist and eliminated that location so it’s now a three-hole arrangement. These presses were available with either a steel or aluminum frame. I might’ve preferred steel for the strength if I was buying a new one (50 years ago).. Mine is aluminum but I don’t think it’s lacking any strength. Let me say a big press is harder to carry than I thought it would be. I don’t want to overblow it into too big a deal, but like a sleeper sofa, everything wants to move when you pick it up. The added weight of a steel frame would not have helped.
  7. Nikon is done also. What’s out there now is it.
  8. I’ve had it in my hands for maybe a week now and it still seems weird to see “AIRWEIGHT” stamped on a K frame. I’ve carried it in a jacket pocket some and it rides well. My iPhone in the opposite pocket is enough counterweight to make the jacket hang right. I think S&W is missing out by not making these now, but in Scandium. Add some better sights and it would be slick. A 3” barrel option would be a neat variant also.
  9. I don’t know why, but I’ve wanted one of these for a while. The Model 12 is an Airweight K frame .38 Spl. Basically an aluminum alloy framed Model 10. You could get it in any combination of 2” and 4” barrel, round butt or square butt grip frame. I’m getting a 2” round butt. But then again, it’s not just an alloy-framed Model 10. An odd fact is the Model 12’s frame is thinner by .08”. Well, the Model 12. 12-1, 12-2, and 12-3 is. The last ones, the 12-4s, were standard K frame width. Who would want that? Weight: 18oz. For comparison sake, the smaller 5-shot .38 J-frame concealed hammer Airweight 442/642 is 15.8 oz. I even have a couple boxes of standard pressure Federal Nyclad 125 HPs saved up for it. For some reason, I’ve had a thing for Sam Spade, Noir-style gats lately. Gats. Heaters. Roscoes. Torpedoes. Iron. Piece. Steel. Freakin’ Gunbroker. Maybe a Detective Special will be next.
  10. I realized I haven’t posted anything since shooting the Kimber, which I’ve since done. A lot. I like it. It’s comfortable (enough) with Magnum ammo, but I’ve been carrying Speer .38 Spl +P 135 grain Short Barrel Gold Dots in it. Another good choice might be Remington .357 Mag 125 Golden Saber which is a mild Magnum. I’ve been using it as my motorcycle gun*, carried in a highly raked crossdraw from Azula Holsters. More or less a “driving holster”. This was my intended use for this gun. I wanted a revolver for motorcycle carry in case I had a need to shoot without the ability to lock my wrist. I would like to add a lanyard ring for a little extra security. I love the grip shape. They are so smooth as to be slick, but there is a stippled version that should take care of that. The grip on the 3” version is a little longer than the 2” but not by much. It is just long enough to get about 3/4 of my pinky finger on and that’s enough. In a word, the grip is efficient. There is only enough material to receive the hand and no more. It’s pretty interesting, really. When gripped with one hand, the only wood visible is a small wedge between my fingertips and the heel of my hand. That got me thinking more. “Efficient” is a good word to describe the entire gun if I had to choose only one. I just described the grip, and the cylinder is well-known. It is only a couple hundredths of an inch larger than a J-frame cylinder yet holds a sixth round. If you look at the cylinder window of the frame, it is cut close at the front and rear. No wasted space there. Every detail was carefully thought out. I still don’t think the trigger is as good as in some other Kimber revolvers I’ve tried, but it HAS improved with use. *BMW R1100RS and BMW K75S.
  11. BarryinIN

    Kel-Tec KS7

    If I’ve learned anything from shooting this gun, it’s that it thrives on abuse. It requires hard use to function. You cannot go easy on it. I know that’s the rule for a lot of guns- lever actions come to mind- but you hammer this thing and I swear you can hear it laugh.
  12. I’ve had it a few days but haven’t shot it yet. The trigger is smooth, but I don’t think it’s quite as smooth or as light as the few I’ve handled before. Those, however, had been shot and/or dry-fired a lot. One was used by a fellow student in a class. We shot around 500 rounds each in that class, plus he had owned, shot, and carried it for months previously. The others were all on display at trade shows where people had been walking up and dry firing them over and over. I guess I shouldn’t compare an out-of-the-box gun to those. It is between S&W J-frame and K-frame size. Maybe a little closer to J. The old Colt D-frames (Detective Special, Agent, etc) is a close match, and HKS D-frame speedloaders work. Its a loose fit in a K-frame holster and won’t go into most J-frame holsters unless they are worn. Many early reviews mentioned that the inside of the frame was actually well finished without a single tool mark. Then I read one recently that complained about how rough it looked inside. This had me wondering if Kimber has let things slide since they brought these out three years ago. I had to look. It appears to me that either the negative reviewer got a bad example or “told a story” (no pics were included) because mine matches early descriptions. A small detail or two. The K6s sideplate comes off about like a S&W. The three screws have hex/Allen heads. I was nervous about taking them out the first time, since they might be ridiculously tight and I’d mar them. They were about right for torque and broke free without drama. The S&W sideplate is usually so tightly fitted it’s hard to get off, but due to minor differences in how the Kimber plate is made, it’s not as bad. It’s still tight, but not bad. The front sideplate screw is pointed, and secures the crane, and therefore the cylinder assembly, in the frame. Remove that screw and the cylinder comes right off. I don’t know why, but it seems easier than on a S&W even though it should be no different. I would love to see Kimber offer an accessory cylinder in 9mm. Or why stop there- .38 Super or even 9x21 for “non-permissive” countries. This one (3”) has the longer grips. The shape feels great, but the wood is so smooth I’m afraid they may be too slick in some cases. They seem like they will be OK with a proper grasp, but so close to not OK you can’t afford to lose any traction. We’ll see. Some checkering or stippling would’ve been nice. There aren’t a whole lot of replacement grip options out there, but there are at least a couple. But none of this means much without shooting it. I’m getting to it.
  13. BarryinIN

    Kel-Tec KS7

    In between the Basic and Advanced groups at 4-H Shooting Sports this weekend, we got set up early so I let my helpers try the KS7 out. We shot most of a box of shells successfully. A friend wanted to bet me it wouldn’t make it through one box of shells before living up to the Kel-Tec reputation of needing a trip back to Cocoa, FL. I refused the wager on the grounds of owning Kel-Tecs before. I thought the amount might be closer to one magazine of seven rounds. I’ll admit it has exceeded my expectations there. BTW, now that I’ve had the chance to look around inside, this gun reminds me of the Ithaca 37 in some ways. If there is a negative that stands out, it’s the safety button. It’s a push-through crossbolt type, above and in front of the trigger. It gets pushed left to right to fire. That’s the opposite of the typical safety button used on Remingtons and others. This is really bothering me.
  14. BarryinIN

    Kel-Tec KS7

    Followed me home. This is the single mag tube version of the KSG. Simpler, lighter, and trimmer. It’s also quite a bit less money- the local shop had $409 on it. What the heck. I’m no Kel-Tec fan, but for $409, I’ll give this one a chance. It feels a lot handier than the KSG.
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