HGR 024 - Miami Vice Quickdraw & Listener E-Mail

HGR 024 - Miami Vice Quickdraw & Listener E-Mail

In this eve of Christmas Eve episode, Ryan discusses the quickdraw used on the Miami Vice episode “The Hit List” and also reads over some listener e-mails!

Brought to you by the Firearms Radio Network

Brownells helps make this show possible. Service, Selection, Satisfaction. Find it all at Brownells. Please visit www.handgunradio.com/brownells

Week in Review:

  • Finished up all my Christmas shopping! (Waited until the last minute as usual.) Noticed that a lot of things at the outdoor retailer/shooting stores like Cabela’s were out of stock and backordered.  I would take this to be a good thing as it makes me think that a great deal of people have gotten involved in the shooting sports over the last year.  Don’t discount firearms books and training books when you are using those gift cards after the holidays. A book may seem like a boring purchase compared to some ammo or reloading supplies, but it can impart a great deal of knowledge to the reader and enable them to be a better shooter.  One of the greatest gifts is knowledge.
  • Unfortunately, famed AK47 designer Mikhail Kalashnikov passed away today at the age of 94.  His timeless addition to the world of small-arms will always be known as a groundbreaking rifle, both in terms of proliferation and reliability.  In one of the biographies I read about him, it was said that over half of the AK-47 rifles currently in circulation are unlicensed copies and that Kalashnikov did not make any significant financial gains for designing the rifle; it is said he did it simply because he wanted to give back to his country.
  • I am excited to see that Ruger is releasing the LCRx which is the standard Ruger LCR but with an exposed hammer.  I have always liked the design of the LCR, but I really prefer to have a hammer on my revolvers.  The LCRx now offers this and I will definitely try to take a look at & shoot one.

Main Topic: The Miami Vice Quickdraw and Listener E-Mails

This weeks main topic may be shorter than the usual but even though its just before Christmas. I still wanted to put something out so while you are laying in your recliner digesting your holiday meal, you can still get your weekly dose of handgunning talk!

Even though I was not old enough to watch the show on its original run, Miami Vice is still a classic, and is more accessible than ever thanks to Netflix streaming.  Miami Vice was always known for its attention to firearms (the director was Michael Mann, who was a known “gun guy” and attended Jeff Cooper’s Gunsite.) Many people remember the gun that Sonny Crockett carried during the first season, the ill-fated Bren Ten.  The Bren Ten was a large, semi-automatic handgun that chambered the then brand new 10mm cartridge. While the Bren Ten didn’t last too long on the show, one scene was forever burned into our memories; the quick draw “Mozambique Drill” done by Jim Zubiena in the episode “The Hit List”. In the scene, Zubiena is a hitman posing as a limo driver.  After assassinating the targets with a few well-placed shotgun blasts, the hit man is confronted by a bodyguard.  Faking surrender, the hitman raises his hands up, and then quickly draws from the appendix position and fires three rounds in under two seconds.

Analysis of the scene:

  • There is a video online from the people who produce PACT timers that shows the video clip and times how long it took the hitman to fire three shots.  The timer came up with 1.38 seconds. In the soundtrack on the TV show, it only sounds like two shots, but if you watch the muzzle flashes it is three shots.
  • People ask why he clears the gun and sets it on the dead man’s chest as he walks away.  Jim Zubiena explained that “this was in the days before really good forensics and he cleared the gun so it couldn’t be used against him by anyone else.  He also noted that once he put the gun down and started walking away, he could have been anyone; a guest or an employee etc.  It separated him from the action.
  • The video clip goes to show you how quickly a threat can attack.  If you are ever staring down a threat, this video is a great example as to why that threat should have your undivided attention.
  • The gun used in the scene is a 1911 pattern pistol, which has a manual safety.  I have seen people online attempt this draw, except with a Glock.  I personally would not feel comfortable doing this, as appendix carry does position the gun over some rather important arteries and vital organs.

Listener E-Mails:

  • From Brendan: I really enjoyed how you explained the differences between the blowback system and the locked breech systems in auto pistols.  There is one system you haven’t touched, the rotating barrel system found in the Px4 Storm. Are there some benefits in using this unique system? Why hasn’t it been implemented in other auto pistols? What are some of the drawbacks?
  • Many older pistols, the Mexican 1911 Obregon, Steyr Hahn M1912 and others used rotating barrels.
  • Barrel moves along one axis, doesn’t tilt. Better accuracy?
  • Could be more sensitive to ammunition? Video on Forgotten Weapons.
  • Pretty simple, uses spiral groove around the chamber that rides a corresponding lug that rotates the barrel to unlock it.
  • From James: I really enjoy your show, especially how you like and discuss revolvers. Have you thought about doing a show on Cowboy Action Shooting? Basically discuss some of the Single Action revolvers that can be used, by Ruger, Cimmaron, Uberti, etc and compare their price & quality?

Don’t forget to shop Brownells using our affiliate link www.handgunradio.com/brownells

Wrap-Up:

  • Like and share our page on FaceBook with family and friends!
  • Give us a review on iTunes! It helps the show in the iTunes standings.
  • Be sure to go over and check out the God and Guns Podcast!
  • Also go check out all the great content over at the Firearms Insider!

Until next week, have fun, Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays and SAFE SHOOTING!!!

HGR 020 - Listener Roundtable

HGR 020 - Listener Roundtable

In the Twentieth episode of Handgun Radio, Ryan discusses handguns and other topics in the first Listener Roundtable!

Brought to you by the Firearms Radio Network

Brownells helps make this show possible. Selection, service, satisfaction. Find it all at Brownells. Visit www.handgunradio.com/brownells

Main Topic:

1.) What was your first handgun?

2.) Why did you get into guns?

3.) What has been your most memorable firearms experience?

4.) In your opinion, what is the best looking handgun ever made?

5.) In your opinion, what is the ugliest handgun ever made?

6.) What is your favorite caliber?

7.) Do you reload your own ammunition?

8.) Out of all the episodes of Handgun Radio that you have listened to, which is your favorite and why?

Wrap-Up:

  • Be sure to check out all the great shows over at the Firearms Radio Network! The hosts of all the shows as well as the people working behind the scenes all work very hard each week to put out great content for your listening enjoyment! Any feedback on any part is always welcome. It is great to hear that people enjoy listening, and it is also great to hear constructive feedback which allows us to make our products better.
  • Like and Share our Facebook Page!
  • Please leave us an iTunes review if you haven’t done so. It helps me make the show better each week!
  • Don’t forget to shop Brownells using our affiliate link www.handgunradio.com/brownells

Until next week have fun and SAFE SHOOTING!!!

HGR 014 - Listener FAQ's

HGR 014 - Listener FAQ’s Episode!

Ryan tackles some of the listener frequently asked questions about handguns and shooting

Brought to you by the Firearms Radio Network

Brownells helps make this show possible. Selection, Service and Satisfaction. Find it all at Brownells. Please visit handgunradio.com/brownells

Week In Review:

  • Been working on some reviews for the upcoming Firearms Insider launch on Tuesday, October 15th.  I think the listeners are really going to enjoy the whole concept of the Firearms Insider community and the extra level of interaction there is to experience.
  • Found an old .32 S&W Top-Break revolver I had started working on several years ago just as a test of my gunsmithing skills.  I polished and blued the barrel and cylinder so I may have to get back into it and do the lower grip frame sometime soon.
  • I am looking for a picatinny mount for my Ruger 10/22.  I have had some trouble finding a mount online, and I was wondering if any of the listeners had this item or knew of where I could get one.  Thanks in advance!

This will more than likely be a fairly lengthy Q&A episode, so we will skip the Half-Truth segment and head right into the main topic!

Main Topic: Listener Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ’s):

Thank you to all the listeners who wrote in with your frequently asked questions.  I hope I can answer them sufficiently!

1.) From Listener T: “Can you use a noise suppressor on a revolver? You always see them on semi-autos in the movies. Is there a way to suppress a revolver?

  • Typically no. The revolver has a small space between the front of the cylinder and the entrance to the barrel, which is called the forcing cone.  When the bullet jumps the gap from the chamber in the cylinder to the forcing cone, there is a substantial amount of gas that is vented from this small gap.  Therefore, if you put a suppressor on the end of the barrel, it will capture gas there, but the gas escaping from the barrel/cylinder gap will be just as loud as the unsuppressed shot, thereby negating the suppressor.  The only time this will work sufficiently is with the 1895 Nagant Gas Seal Revolver. The 1895 Nagant uses a camming mechanism which cams the cylinder forward before firing. The Nagant also uses a special cartridge that helps seal the barrel/cylinder gap so no gases escape.

2.) From Listener Todd: “What is the difference in the grain count of different bullets and why does it matter? What is the difference in different grades of ammunition such as match, range, hunting, etc.?”

  • The grain count of a bullet is a measurement of the bullet’s weight.  There are 7000 grains in one pound.  The measurement of 158 Grains or 170 Grains is how much that particular bullet weighs.  Typically, the length of the back end of the bullet grows as the weight increases (you can’t increase the diameter of the bullet to increase weight, and you can’t alter the nose shape either.) The weight of the bullet can have an effect on many things ballistically, such as accuracy, bullet drop, and penetration on the target. When discussing the different grades of ammunition, Match ammunition is manufactured with VERY tight tolerances, and oftentimes each round is inspected by hand to ensure quality and uniformity.  Range ammunition is your basic “Winchester White Box” stuff that is produced in quantity and is not intended for the utmost accuracy, just for practice time on the range.  Bullets are usually full-metal jacket.  Hunting grade ammunition is loaded similarly to Match ammunition, but carries a bullet specifically designed to dispatch a certain type of game.  Remington Core-Lokt bullets are a superb example of hunting ammunition.  It carries a jacketed soft point bullet that will expand on impact, killing the game quickly and humanely.

3.) From Listener Ed: “I have a Browning Hi-Power 9mm which I had stored away for 30+ years.  I carried it off duty when I was a Police Officer.  I have had it reblued and checked over by a gunsmith who advised replacing the recoil spring which is being done. Do you think carrying this handgun cocked and locked in a holster is a reasonably safe thing to do? Do you know where I can obtain spare magazines and a good holster for this model?”

  • It is pretty safe to carry the Browning cocked and locked (in fact, I wouldn’t carry it hammer down on anything except an empty chamber.) Most Brownings, especially the earlier models, are NOT drop safe.  To rectify this, you may check with Cylinder & Slide or Brownells to look for a light firing pin and a heavy firing pin spring.  This should help make the pistol more drop safe.  As for magazines, I have heard good things about Mec-Gar products and have also had good experience with Don Hume holsters for my semi-autos.  These can be found for good prices online at any number of the firearms accessories sites.

4.) From Listener Lyndon: “What is the story behind the development of the .22 Magnum? Many guns shoot both .22 LR and .22 Mag using separate cylinders. It is my understanding is that they increased the thickness of the cartridges case on the inside and decreased the diameter of the bullet by 1/1000th of an inch. This means the .22 Mag is going through a barrel designed for a larger bullet.  This may explain some of the .22 Mag’s accuracy problems. Why didn’t they increase the thickness of the case on the outside instead of the inside? This would alow the gun to shoot the correct diameter bullet. Perhaps the cylinders themselves couldn’t handle the pressure with larger chambers?”

  • The .22 WMR was introduced in 1959. Some people think that the .22 LR and the .22 Magnum are just the same cartridge case that has been lengthened, but this is not the case. The .22 Magnum was derived from the .22 Winchester Rimfire which has a bullet 0.15” greater in diameter than the .22 LR and has a thicker case wall to withstand the higher pressures.  The .22 Magnum uses bullets that are seated in the case like most centerfire rounds, and is .224 inches in diameter.  The .22 LR uses a heel-type bullet, with the case mouth holding onto a sub-caliber heel on the back of the .22 LR bullet. The diameter of the .22 LR bullet is .222 inches.  The .22 LR will fit loosely in a .22 Magnum chamber, but will split upon firing and can be dangerous.  The .22 Magnum/.22 LR convertible revolvers use a .224 inch diameter bore and rely upon the soft lead .22 LR bullet to expand or obdurate to grab the rifling, as the .222 bullet in the .22 LR is far too small for the .224 inch bore.

5.) From Listener Nick: “I hear constant discussion about what calibers and actions are best for in-home defense. What is your opinion?”

  • The calibers argument could be a whole show by itself.  I will try to dissect each question somewhat and give the best answer I can.  In terms of caliber, you must consider your living situation.  Do you live in a house with other people in it? An apartment? Over penetration of ANY handgun round you choose is going to be a significant issue.  It has been shown that even 9mm can penetrate several layers of drywall.  For home defense, look at some of the ammunition that has been produced specifically for home defense purposes, such as Federal Guard Dog. This ammunition is designed to reduce overpenetration. In terms of action, you need to consider who is using the gun and their hand size, stature, etc.  If you have a significant other who is unfamiliar with firearms but may need to use the gun, a revolver may be a good choice due to its simplicity.  If you have someone who can’t operate the heavy trigger of the revolver, something like a Glock may also be called for.  This is a decision that will be heavily based upon the intended users of the firearm, as well as your living situation.

6.) From Listener Jeff: “I am considering a smaller CCW piece in .380 ACP or .32 ACP.  I have heard you talk about the .32 ACP quite a bit. Which cartridge is best in your opinion?”

  • At one time, the .32 ACP was your only option when you wanted to get a really small, concealable pistol.  The .380 ACP was around but was not as popular a cartridge for quite some time.  You do hear me talk about the .32 ACP quite a bit, but that is because I own a Colt 1903 which I enjoy immensely.  There are better defensive rounds out there.  The .380 ACP is the minimum that most people feel comfortable carrying.  The advancements in .380 ACP ammunition in terms of hollowpoint design, velocity and performance put it well above the .32 ACP in terms of stopping power.  The majority of .32 ACP cartridges, even today, will fail to expand due to the fairly low velocity out of a small pocket pistol barrel.  If you still want to carry the .32 ACP, many people including myself recommend full-metal jacket ammunition.  The .32 ACP will need to penetrate to do its work, and the chances of expansion are slim.  Yes, there is the concern for overpenetration, but the .32 ACP is less apt to do so, given its lower velocities.  If you’re carrying .380 ACP, any of the modern hollowpoint designs should be sufficient for self-defense.

7.) From Listener Todd: “I’m interested in learning more about Bullseye Shooting. What are the basics, what types of handguns are most popular, should you try to match your handguns with respect to grips, trigger pull, etc.?”

  • A bullseye pistol match is called a 2700. Each competitor fires 270 shots, each with a POTENTIAL value of 10 points. The 270 shots are divided into three, 90 shot events: .22, Center-Fire, and .45. This originally was intended to allow the use of a .22 pistol, a .38 Special police-style handgun and a 1911 .45 Automatic.
  • I will admit, I have very little experience with this form of competition pistol shooting.  I have found a SUPERB website called Bullseye Pistol Shooting that thoroughly explains what Bullseye shooting is and all the various facets of it.

Brownells helps make this show possible. The leading supplier of Firearm Accessories, Gun Parts and Gunsmithing Tools. Find it all at Brownells. Please visit handgunradio.com/brownells

Wrap-Up:

  • Thank you to everyone who sent in Listener FAQ’s! This was a very fun episode and I can’t wait to do another one in the future.
  • Be sure to check out the reviews and the Firearms Insider community over at The Firearms Insider! Share the link with your friends!
  • Give Handgun Radio a written review on iTunes! Thank you to everyone who has done so!
  • If it wasn’t for you listeners, the show wouldn’t be where it is today! Thank you so much!

Thanks for listening and SAFE SHOOTING!

HGR 012 - The 1911 World

HGR 012 - The 1911 World

This week, Ryan discusses some of the guns, tips, tricks and quirks of the 1911 world.

Brought to you by the Firearms Radio Network

Week In Review:

  • Returned from Florida this past week, I hope you all enjoyed last week’s episode of Handgun Radio where I discussed some of the guns that I saw down there.
  • I received a comment on the Handgun Radio webpage that said I repeated myself too much on last week’s episode.  I don’t know if it was nerves (I was concerned that my poor internet connection would not let me release the show) or tiredness, but I apologize for the oversight and will try to be more cognizant of such things in the future.
  • Got the chance to handle & fire a Ruger Redhawk in .44 Magnum this past weekend.  It is what I will be using for deer hunting this year.  It is a great shooting handgun with good iron sights and a very nice trigger.  I will be using Federal .44 Magnum Jacketed Hollow Points with a weight of 240 grains. It was all I could find for .44 Magnum ammunition.
  • The Firearms Insider on the Firearms Radio Network will be going live on October 15th and will feature some great product & gear reviews that you will all enjoy for sure.  I will be contributing to the FI podcast/website as well so stay tuned for that!
  • Also, I would like to welcome the We Like Shooting podcast to the Firearms Radio Network! They have a great podcast covering all facets of the shooting world. Go check them out at the link above!

Main Topic: The 1911 World:

In this week’s main topic, we are going to be discussing some of the questions I’ve received from listeners about the 1911. The various modifications, the way the gun works, best places to get information, etc. I’ll then probably get into a few more specific reader emails that describe their experiences with the 1911 platform.

1.) Do you need a tricked out, tuned and polished 1911 to be proficient with the gun or have a reliable firearm?

  • No. The 1911 in its most basic format, was intended as a combat handgun.  It was not conceived as a target handgun. Even in its most basic iteration it can be a formidable fighting tool.
  • Yes, the sights on the original 1911 and the 1911A1’s are very small, and can be hard to see. By practicing with these small sights, one can become reasonably proficient with them.  The 1911 can have many improvements added to it, but even without them it is very usable.
  • Reliability is key in a fighting handgun. If you have a highly accurate 1911 that is so tightly fitted it cannot be counted on to function reliably, that accuracy potential may not matter. A good 1911 is properly fitted, and left loose enough to function reliably. (that is just my personal opinion, however. Others may disagree.)

2.) I’ve heard of reliability issues with the 1911 platform. Should I be concerned about these issues?

  • Yes, there have been some reports of reliability issues with the 1911. These typically stem from either bad magazines, ammunition selection or poor maintenance of the firearm.
  • Properly maintained, the 1911 is very reliable. Perhaps some of the users experiencing malfunctions are more used to the Glock style of handguns, which may not require as thorough a cleaning as often to function reliably.
  • There HAVE been some issues of the 3-inch versions of the 1911 having reliability issues. There is a video describing the issue done by Rob Pincus. Agree or disagree, it definitely offers up some food for thought.

3.) The trigger on the 1911 looks different to me than the trigger on my Sig-Sauer. Why is that?

  • The 1911 uses a different style trigger than the majority of the guns that are produced today.  The 1911 uses a sliding trigger, that moves backwards and forwards in a line parallel to the slide. Other handguns, such as the Sig-Sauer P-226, Glock 19, and Ruger P95 use a pivoting trigger, that pivots on a single axis at the top of the trigger. These two triggers systems offer a different feel, and one or the other can be preferable to some shooters.

4.) I am uncomfortable with cocked-and-locked carry or “Condition 1” with the 1911. Why is this done? Is this safe? What options are out there for someone like me not comfortable with this method of carry?

  • Condition 1 or “Cocked-and-Locked” carry is the safest method of carrying the 1911 in my opinion.
  • Condition 1 allows for a loaded round to be chambered and the hammer to be safely locked back, allowing for a fast first shot if needed.  It also helps to prevent accidental discharge.
  • On older 1911’s, there is probably no firing pin safety like you are used to on modern guns. The hammer resting against the firing pin would be unsafe if dropped. The thumb safety on older 1911’s blocks the sear from moving. Even if this thumb safety were broken, and the full cock notch on the sear were worn, the half cock notch would catch the hammer before it struck the firing pin.
  • On newer guns such as the Colt Series 80, Kimber, Smith & Wesson, Taurus and Para, a firing pin block keeps the firing pin stationary until the trigger is fully depressed.
  • In order to make your old 1911 drop safe, replace the firing pin and firing pin spring with a light titanium firing pin, with a heavy firing pin spring.  This will decrease the likelihood of a discharge with a dropped gun.
  • If you are not comfortable with the cocked-and -locked carry method, you can choose the Para LDA (Light Double Action) series of handguns, which offer all of the 1911, except the single action trigger design.  Every  trigger pull is a double action only trigger stroke.
  • You can also use the Safety Fast Shooting System from Cylinder & Slide.  This modification allows you to carry your 1911 cocked and locked, but with the hammer safely down. When you disengage the thumb safety, the hammer springs backward to full-cock, and you are ready to fire.

5.) I want to have a gunsmith customize my 1911 pistol. Do you have any advice for someone who has never worked with a gunsmith before?

  • If you are going to have a custom 1911, or any gun built or worked on by a gunsmith, choose a good one. Shop around.  The ones who do exemplary work will not be cheap, and they typically have quite a backlog. This is a good thing, as good work equals high demand which equals the backlog. There may be a reason if a gunsmith does not have a backlog. Just do your homework.
  • Bigger name gunsmiths can increase the value of your handgun, but don’t always assume that.
  • Know what you want done.  If you want a concealed carry firearm, its probably best that you don’t take your handgun to the guy who builds custom big-bore hunting revolvers.
  • Knowing what you want done will also help the gunsmith guide the project and ultimately will result in a better final product.

6.) Some E-Mails from listeners.

Wrap-Up:

  • Like us over on Facebook!
  • Check out all the great shows on the Firearms Radio Network
  • Leave us a written review on iTunes! It helps the show get noticed!
  • Thank you to everyone who is sending in the Listener FAQ Questions! I can’t wait for that episode!
  • You can listen to us on Stitcher Radio as well!

Thanks for listening and SAFE SHOOTING!!