I’m having a hard time not being outraged by this

Under what circumstances would this be considered okay by anyone?

When I first heard “journalists hit with tear gas” my assumption was that it was, for lack of a better description, an embedded journalist in the middle of a crowd during the riot. I’ve seen that kind of thing before, particularly journalists of the local-alt-weekly variety. In one local case, the only way to know the guy was a journalist was to have known who he was beforehand–he carried no credentials and had only his iPhone as a recording device.

But that’s clearly not the case here. This is a professional camera crew not in the vicinity of anyone else. This is obvious, and cannot be explained away by any sort of benefit of the doubt.

This is stuff I’d expect out of Iran, not St. Louis.

Gun Porn: Briefcase Edition

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Kriss Vector SDP .45ACP Pistol–and yes, that’s the case it’s kept in.

Surefire light kit
EOTech 512

Smittybilt XJ XRC Front Bumper: Initial Thoughts and Installation

I kind of accidentally bought this bumper so bear with me while I tell the story. Regular readers will know that I recently bought a 1998 Jeep Cherokee after chasing a guy down in traffic to buy it. It’s got a little bit of a lift and some 31″ tires. This one came from the factory with a donut spare, which is something I’d never even heard of before in a Cherokee. Because of that, it didn’t have the necessary hardware to properly hold a full-size spare–which only matters a little because the maximum tire size for the factory hardware is…31″.

This is my third XJ. For both of my previous Jeeps, I wanted new bumpers but didn’t really find it necessary to spend the money. I really like the way tire carrier rear bumpers look, this one needed one, so there’s all the excuse I needed. I bought this XJ for less than I sold my WRX for, so that’s where my budget came from.

Looking around, most of the bumpers that did what I wanted were in the $1200 range. That was basically my whole budget for upgrades so I kept looking. Smittybilt came out with one that got mixed reviews mostly from people who’d never seen one. “Trail Ready” and “Smittybilt” aren’t usually used in the same sentence. There were lots of questions about the thickness of the steel, the quality of the welds, and whether they tied into the frame or just used the stock bumper mounts. There weren’t any good writeups out there because the manufacturer has had problems with lead times. I think it was 6 months to a year before the first paying customers actually got their bumpers in hand.

If I’m completely honest with myself, the bumper would be just for show. I went wheeling exactly one time with the previous two Cherokees…and rode with someone else. The Smittybilt bumper was $750 pretty much everywhere, so I could save $450 if I bought theirs.

I live about 3 miles from a retail store for 4 Wheel Parts. They’re a retailer for Smittybilt, so one Saturday I took liwizard and we went investigating. They didn’t have any of the Cherokee bumpers on display, but they did have others in the XRC line for me to look at. They had something else, too.

There was a single sales flyer about the size of a postcard sitting on top of one of the Wrangler bumpers: “Buy a Cherokee front and rear XRC bumper by June 30th, get XRC Rock Sliders for free.” The sliders are about $500.

So for the cost of a “standard” tire carrier bumper, I could get the front and rear bumpers plus rock sliders. Yeah, so that was kind of a no-brainer.

Unfortunately–and this was not explained to me properly when I made my purchase–everything except the front bumper was backordered. For four months. Apparently “They’re in the warehouse in California and will take 3 weeks to get here” doesn’t actually mean that the ones in the warehouse haven’t already been bought by someone else. I learned that when I picked up the front bumper and the counter guy casually mentioned my other stuff was on backorder.

Things you should probably know up front

The box is much larger than you’d think. When I went to pick it up the first time we discovered it won’t actually fit in the back of a Cherokee. So unless you’re getting it freighted to your house, you’re going to need a bigger boat. The actual dimensions of the box are 71 1/2″ x 23″ x 13″ and it’s listed weight is 185 lbs.

The instructions are, well, lacking. I didn’t have any luck finding them posted anywhere, so I scanned them and uploaded them here in hopes that some other poor soul can find them:
XJ XRC Front Bumper SB76810 Install Instructions

I apologize for the quality of the photos in the instructions…but that’s what ships with the bumper. No color photos, and the black and white ones are pretty grainy.

There more bolts and washers included than you’ll need, but there aren’t more nuts than you’ll need. I suspect this is the standard hardware they send out with several models.

There are two different sized washers. For the standard head bolts, use the smaller ones.

The 2″ spacer they mention is actually a 2″ washer

On 1996 and older models, cutting is required on the front fenders. I’ve seen some folks complain that the instructions tell you to cut too much, so there’s that.

Also, since you’re going to be in there anyway, you might want to pick up a steering box brace. I’ve heard good things about the M.O.R.E. brace. It didn’t occur to me until I was already in there that this would have been a perfect time to do it. Oh well.

Tools I used:
Sockets:
–XRC: Hex Cap bolts 5/8″ nuts 17mm (11/16″)
–XRC: Hex screw nuts 3/4″ (19mm)
–Jeep: Bumper Bracket Bolts 15mm
–Jeep: Other: 10mm and 1/4″
3/8-Inch Drive Ratchet
Black & Decker RCT100 TriRatchet 3/8-inch Drive Ratchet
DeWalt DC825B 1/4-Inch 18-Volt Cordless Impact Driver
12″ impact ready bit holder extension
ratcheting box wrenches
Plastic Fastener Remover
DeWalt Pivoting Bit Holder
Plastic Fastener Remover
3/8 Drive Wobble Extensions
1/2″ Drive Click Stop Torque Wrench
Blue Loctite 6-ml
DeWalt 18V 1/2″ Cordless XRP Drill
7/16-Inch Drill Bit
T-25 Torx bit
T-50 Torx Bit Socket
XJ Field Service Manual
Stanley Snips

Really would have been helpful, and I’ve bought since then:
DEWALT DW2547Ir 1/4-Inch Hex Shank To 1/2-Inch Socket Adaptor

Tons and tons of pictures after the break….

Continue reading Smittybilt XJ XRC Front Bumper: Initial Thoughts and Installation

Gun Porn: Suddenly More Valuable Edition

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The prices for the Saiga 12 went up over $800 during the 2013 panic. I believe they were around $600 before that for the unconverted* ones. When ARs and AKs fell back down, Saiga 12s didn’t because there was a rumor that they were going to be classified as destructive devices. That didn’t pan out either, but a couple of weeks ago President Obama made it illegal for an American company to do business with the company that produces Saigas.

Prices have increased somewhat. It’s telling that Pro Mag 20 round drums cost less from Brownell’s than they’re selling for used on Gunbroker.

I’m told the LimbSaver is helpful if you’ve also got the drum mags :)

*Unconverted meaning not converted back to their original factory condition. So maybe unconverted is the wrong word. GCA68 required them to be converted to a “sporting purposes” condition, meaning without the scary pistol grip.

Gun Porn: Piston FAR-15

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This one belongs to James, a friend of mine and the host of the Bidet Shoot. The backstory on this rifle is that the first few times he took the rifle out….something broke. And by happenstance, I was there for each one :D

Finally had a chance to sit down and list out all of the parts for my FAR-15, which stands for *ucking AR-15 :)

Base rifle: CMMG basic AR Carbine model, bought October 2007

Innards: Adams Arms carbine-length gas piston conversion
Adams Arms full-auto one-piece bolt group (designed for gas piston conversion)

Geiselle S3G trigger group

Optics: Eotech 512 Holosight
GG&G Eotech QD throw-lever mount
Magpul Gen 1 front and rear MBUS

Furniture: Vltor Enhanced EMod Buttstock
Magpul MOE Carbine Handguard
Magpul MIAD Grip (with 2-AA battery grip core)
Magpul Winter Trigger Guard

Other: AAC Blackout 18-tooth FH
Magpul MOE Handguard Sling Clip
BCM Gunfighter Charging Handle (Medium latch)
Magpul B.A.D. Lever
CMMG Ambi-Safety Lever
Magpul MS2 Sling
Magpul Ambi Sling Plate

Future Add-Ons

Spikes T2 or T3 heavy buffer (want to check with AA first)
Forearm mounted light (need one that doesn’t interfere with grip)
Eotech Laser Module upgrade (why? why not?)

As much as I rag on ARs in general, and this one specifically, I fully believe that my earlier issues with the gas piston system were 100% user error. Now that I have been educated properly, I don’t think I will have any more issues with it. This rifle is built exactly as I want MY rifle to be, which is not something I can say of most any others in my collection. Wish I had more .223, I would shoot it a lot more if I did.

Good News/Bad News

Good news! My rifle came back from Remington today!

Bad news! It seems that I may have found the source of my accuracy issues:

Click to embiggen

Click to embiggen

Embody Update

His hearing on a motion to dismiss was pushed back to August 15th.

This one is for his refusal to show his paperwork for his suppressor when asked. The article says:

Embody maintains he did nothing wrong and said no one acknowledged or accepted the paperwork he was carrying with him at the time.

…but according to comments he made on this site, that’s not true.

The form 3 was in the sealed and locked case along with the firearm. The police have been in possession of the form 3 for days…

The pigs partially opened it up on the side of the street. It took several minutes for two of them to partially open it. They repeatedly asked me for keys, but I pled the fifth. They took me to jail and booked me a couple of hours later. They stripped searched me specifically looking for keys to open the cable lock. Not finding any keys, then they decided it would be best to obtain at warrant to cut the lock to see if it was loaded. They cut the lock at about 9pm that night after getting a warrant. The form 3 was inside. Charges are still good and court is on the 20th of Aug. 9am.

He chose to go to jail rather than display the documents he had in his possession.

Gun Porn: Er, I think that’s an HK edition

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It’s either an HK91 or a PTR91, but the markings aren’t right for either so I have no idea. I’m prettty sure it’s an HK though based on what I remember of the conversations I had with the owner.

Fun with Headlines: Reckless Endangerment Edition

Actual headline: Police: Homeowner fired shot because kids wouldn’t leave
Accurate Headline: Homeowner fired shot at parent angry he wouldn’t let kids steal his fruit.

Yesterday afternoon the story was pretty sparse, but last night the local Democratic Party ABC Affiliate’s story just said someone shot at some kids in his yard. I thought maybe it was a group of teenagers menacing the guy, so when I opened the story I was shocked to see actual children in the story, and not a bunch of 17 year olds.

What a horrible person, right? Who shoots at 9 year old girls?

Well, no one in this story:

She said she and three friends were picking pears and went through Harrison’s backyard. He then told them to get off his property.

“This guy started cussing us out and stuff so I just told him to leave us alone because he kept on cussing us out,” said Freels.

The group then left and told a parent, Brittany Foster.

Foster said she went to confront Harrison and that is when he fired the gun.

“Especially with children being in the present, I just can’t understand why, why he would do that,” she said.

“I got scared,” said Freels.

He told News 2 he is sorry for scaring the children but said he felt like he was in “imminent danger.”

He thought a man was “charging” toward him.

Note that in neither the story nor the video does anyone dispute that a man was rushing towards the homeowner when the shot was fired. I would think that would be a point to emphasize if it were the case.

So to recap:
1. Children “wander” onto property
2. Children begin picking pears that do not belong to them
3. Property owner tells them to stop stealing and leave, using colorful language
4. Kids go tell their parents about the mean man who told them to stop stealing
5. Parents confront/assault homeowner
6. Homeowner fires warning shot at man rushing towards him

Now, it could be that the homeowner is a despicable person who jumps to violence the first chance he gets, or it could be that the unidentified man really was there to do harm.

What doesn’t appear to be the case is that the homeowner fired a shot “because kids wouldn’t leave.”

ETA: I see that the story made it to Knoxville without the important details.

Gun Porn: Shorty AK’s

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