Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Good Day Shooting and Buying

It’s been awhile since I posted about shooting and gun collecting. It’s been a hectic eight months. Our new jobs came with a lot of new responsibilities as well as new rewards. Shooting and collecting got shoved off to the side.

I managed to get in some quality range and gun show time on September 13 (I know it’s been ten days, sigh). Yosemite was out of town and I was at loose ends. I got up early that day and headed to the NRA Headquarters Range in Virginia. I shot my bullseye pistol and a 1911. Even with a break in practice, the skills are still there. Good times.

Later, I headed to the gun show at the Dulles Convention Center. Coincidently, Sebastian and Bitter were there sometime during the day, but I didn’t see them.

This show was the largest I’ve attended and had an excellent selection. Here are a few highlights: a table with about ten transferable Thompson sub-machine guns; another with a full-auto and transferable AK-47, the first I’ve seen; an authentic matchlock; many flintlocks and other antiques; and lots more.

Of course, full-auto offerings are beyond my bank account. Still, I managed to add a “holy grail” gun to my little collection. Ironically, the vendor selling the gun is from New Hampshire.

Here’s a picture:

Yes, it’s another broomhandle Mauser. I love these old guns. This one is a “red nine.” The German Army needed more handguns during World War I and commissioned Mauser to build broomhandles that chambered their military round, 9mm. To differentiate them from existing 7.63mm guns, they carved 9s on the grips and painted the number red.

Mine has finish wear and the grips are worn, but the rifling is sharp, the bore is perfect, and it’s mechanically sound. All serial numbered parts match—including both grips. I took it home, dismantled it, and cleaned off years of accumulated gunk and grease.

To be political for a minute, I am basically a handgun shooter and collector. I can and do shoot rifles and shotguns, but my true love is handgun shooting, particularly bullseye. It challenges me and satisfies me more than any other shooting sport (or any other sport for that matter).

Pistol shooting and handgun ownership is suspect to people like Obama and Biden. I believe Biden when he said that Obama wouldn’t take away his over/under shotguns, but what about my handguns?

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