Saturday, November 29, 2008

New toys keep rolling in. Or not.

So, in the pantheon of CZ there's now:

CZ-75B compact
CZ-75B .40S&W compact
Tanfoglio TZ-75 Compact
EAA Witness .45 Compact

And yet, there are still holes... 38, 85, 97, some of the more exotic pre-war variants like the 24, 26, a Duo, maybe even some of the funkier pocket guns with folding triggers... I don't have a full-size 75 at all either, though the 85 would fill the niche.

CZ's making polymer frame 75s now too, which complicates matters. And the RAMI. Oh, and the CZ40. And the 50. And the rifles.

I have planning to do. Oh, and the "Holy Grail"? CZ made a copy of a Colt revolver in the 50's for security police work. I heavily doubt any came this way, but that's why it's a Holy Grail gun.


Updates on the other incoming items: The receiver on order for the AK74 along with the papasha parts kit are delayed, with no reason other than "we're busy". I'll be calling them next week. The RIA Hi-cap was not even in stock when I ordered it, and will be a week or more. That company was honest about it when I called, and it's enough of a deal that I'm not going to bitch too loudly, but come on... have something in hand when you advertise it or at least say it's not on-hand, ok?

Oh, and I stumbled upon an acceptable deal on an NEF .357 handi, new for $228. I got word it shipped UPS ground wednesday... so I went ahead and ordered three scopes, two cheap NCstars and a Cabela's .444Marlin scope. The former two, one is for the Marlin to replace the supercheap BSA I have on it (this one's a nicer fixed 4x20) and the other was a compact 4x30 for the NEF, since that doesn't have sights at all.

Unfortunately immediately after my order, the company I got the NCstars from sent me a "Oh, sorry, both backordered" email. Dammit! I'm not one to say "there oughtta be a law" but jeez, this is so widespread there's no chance of social pressure fixing it, and if there's one PEEP of "oh, price went up" on ANY of my orders I'm finding a lawyer, because the orders were taken and my money accepted. None of the companies I used have a history of that though, so really all I'm in for is a wait.

A wait, and a stretch of time my long-awaited NEF .357 will be useless. *grumble*. I may toss the red dot from the MechTech on there so I can use it while I wait for everything else.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

StrangeGun moment of the day

1. Get a front-stuffer of .58 caliber or larger
2. Get a teeny camera with a radio transmitter
3. design a sabot'ed finned "dart"
4. Kiss it goodbye with a much-reduced load, watch the insanity

Problems: needs a HUGE range, or a parachute. Spring loaded fin carriers to stay closed around the recovery device under aero pressure until it slows enough to release it? Maybe.

Could do this with a little air cannon as well.

Just something to ponder.


You know, the only real thing left on the "solid" wish list is a .357 single shot rifle.

Don't know where to go with that, though. NEF apparently disco'd theirs, and everything else is a fortune. Maybe it's time to sit and watch the auctions for a while...

Friday, November 21, 2008

What is, and what will never be...

It's not happening. Here's a copy of the last email I sent to the MechTech guy;


I’ve measured up and a shim .045” wide and .145” tall, attached so as to leave a .125” gap from the side of the inside rib of the bolt would do it, radiused down flush from .300” behind the bolt face and staying at full height .600”, radiused down to flush towards the rear with what figures out to be probably a 55mm diameter slitting saw (1.55” secant, .325” chord height, maybe… never was too good at math)

That shim could be wider but those measurements leave room for the attachment safety spring to be left alone with enough room to work properly. It’d have been a lot easier to measure too if the central rib (I don’t know the right nomenclature, sorry) were the same height, the two are different depths as measured from the center of the firing pin channel.

As thin as that shim is, I don’t think it’ll just be a simple addition, I see tab slots and silver solder in it’s future. I’m probably not going to do it, but there’s the numbers if you all decide to do something with it on the machining end.

Photos for reference:


The added bit won't be strong enough without drastic measures, and I don't want to modify the CCU that deeply (tab/slot fits, silver solder).

But, the RIA frame is identical to that one, but in single action that I *KNOW* will function, so all will be well in StrangeGunLand :-D

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Oh, one more thing...

The tactimarlin paid a trip to the gunsmiths a few days ago as well. And I got it back doing the same things it was doing...

See, it eats any old .22LR just fine, but it EATS CCI stingers, literally... slams the bolt into the side of the cartridge so hard it bunches two square holes.

Well, I'm just figuring now that it's just not compatible, and that's fine. So in reality, I put it in the shop because *all* I'd tried were stingers. Whoops :) Seeing now as I'm in possession of 500+ rounds of Fed Premium, it won't be an issue again for a long time.

Ammo day... was a bust. I spent ~13 hours in bed yesterday with murderous sinuses. 30-40% humidity here, 25% at job#1, not cool for the old noggin.


Ah, one more one more thing. The CCU and the LDA may have a chance or reconciliation. I've been in conversations with a Para guy on and the MechTech engineers via email, and I *might* be able to fashion a little metal chunk to behave like the trigger reset cut in the Para slide. If not (or I decide to take the easy, money-throwing route), I can either get a Para "gunsmith kit" which is a ~$400 dressed frame, OR I can drop $400 on an RIA 1911 hi-cap, which is fashioned after the Para frame and will take my mags. Oh, and will leave me with a brand-new .45 slide and barrel assembly, which I will obviously later on throw a standard 1911 frame at and end up with (queue dramatic music) my first REAL 1911, matching my intentions of BUILDING MY OWN. Hee :)

Yeah, I know the RIA frames are cast, but I note that this frame will be permanently assigned to the CCU, and it's only task is to hold the magazine, my hand, and the triggery bits in the right position to repeatedly go "bang". Hell, I could do that with a chunk of wood (and I haven't forgotten the idea of trying that with an AR upper, either).


Damn.... just talked myself into it. I'm still going to see what I can do with the LDA, but that RIA hi-cap is on it's way to the armory.

And my credit card, it *bleeeds*. I ought to be back to normal (zero debt) by May though, earlier if I push hard.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008


Frankengun and Mr. MechTech aren't on speaking terms.

I'm doing something I'm reasonably sure, after searches and even asking the MechTech guy (who said he's the one who'd be building the unit) about the compatability between the CCU and the Para LDA system.

And, there's a problem. Seems the CCU isn't hitting the disconnector properly, or that's my best guess. You get one hammer fall, then it's all caterwumpus, and becomes a bear to take apart.

I will confer with better smiths than I tomorrow. This could be something as simple as putting in a shim to hit the disconnector, or something as difficult (financially) as just finding a Para double stack frame or equivalent, with the regular 1911 single action parts.

I know the CCU itself works... I stripped the range Kimber .45 1911 and installed it, and put 10mm in the .45 magazine and let it rip. 4 for 4 fired, and then I was out of ammo since I forgot to bring any of my stash.

Watch this space. Something will be figured out. Pics when it's running.

Hello, Mr. Wildey.

No no, as nice as it would be to lay hands on a Wildey, I haven't. That's a tribute.

What *has* arrived though... Hello, Mr. Mech-Tech :)

I'll be sliding the Frankengun frame into it, being a 16" 10mm model with the fixed stock. Looks like a space gun, probably shoots like a space gun with the ammo I have, and.... Dammit all, it's just frickin' neat.

The ammo? it arrived yesterday too... 500 rounds of Georgia Arms 10mm 180gr FMJ and 200 rounds of 155gr HP bookin' along at 1375 fps, likely much faster from a long barrel. Who ever thought I'd see the day when 10mm becomes economical. See, My grand sum total for that and 100 rounds of .32mag LRN, shipped, was $301. $0.38 a round, averaged. Still not the cheapest, but not bad at all.

A little el-cheapo Chinese Docter sight knockoff arrived too, and actually looks pretty solid. We'll see how long it lasts, because for some reason I expect the recoil from this rig to be brisk. I'll start sighting it in tonight, I need to find a ballistics chart for 180gr@~1100fps so I can calc what the hold over is for 25 yards to get a rough 100 yard zero.

Future plans: This may spin off as a complete set. All I would need to do so is a Para frame with fire control parts, I already have several extended mags. Single action versus LDA, the verdict is out on that...

With a carbine, the idea of playing a bit with the 10mm load pops up. I need to find the limits of what it'll feed as far as OAL, but odd thoughts of 250+ grain subsonic loads through a suppressor are coming to mind, as well as what I could do if I find .400" diameter sabots... hell, or develop some of my own. I had a book on the way, "How to cast small metal and plastic parts" but it either didn't get delivered or someone snagged it off my doorstep, I'll have to order it again. I'm thinking a sabot that adapts a .308 projectile but covers the nose so the overall profile is like a round nose FMJ might work well, 3 or 4 interlocking pieces that stay together until they get out of the barrel and then fling apart sideways from the centripetal forces...

... anyone ever do something like that with, say, balsa/basswood?

That's something to play with in the next toy though, if I can find one... a single shot .38spl carbine (.357 mag would work too). NEF is supposed to have something like that but it's apparently rare as hen's teeth.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Breaking radio silence

I'd intended to stay silent today in rememberence of all the veterans who gave the best part of themselves in the service of their nation.

Well, instead here I'll say, thank you all.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Day.... something. Gun done!

Saturday I got a note in the mailbox that I had a package. Nifty.

Extended my lunch to pick it up today, took it home, took some hurry-up photos and came back to work.

I've got some decisions to make as to the color, and that upper needs some finish lovin'... but aside from the colors and the grip, I'm already pretty close to what I'm after.

Click to enlarge. I'm quite happy :)

Friday, November 07, 2008

See, I'm useful after all.

Don't ever say I don't have mad skillz.

A while back I brushed past my little office filing cabinet and broke the key off in the lock. Now, that's not usually a big deal, it's a little sheetmetal thing I keep old papers in, but I like being able to lock it so I can pick it up and move it safely.

It just now got on my nerves enough to do something. So, I disassembled the lock so I could pop out the little stub of key left in it, and retired to the MAD SCIENTISTS LAIR (the basement).

Judicious use of propane torch and tin/silver solder, some delicate cutting and filing, viola... functioning key. It works too; I don't really trust it enough to use daily but it's good enough to have a copy made. heh, $5 key for a $20 filing cabinet... I might just keep using it. It's not exactly straight, since the metal stretched when I bent it over and snapped it, but like I said... it works now.

Beginnings, gigantic two thumbs up.

They were the next to last thing I ordered, the big complicated parts order... and it was on my doorstep today. Incredible.

We'll call this "Day One" of the chronicle of the 2008 project.

Thursday, November 06, 2008


Friday, I decided to buy some basic things on credit, because I had it and it wasn't any big deal.
By monday, I'd decided that I was going to take a risk and "stock up" per se, in case any legislation started rolling downhill.

So, a short list of what new toys are on their way/have arrived;
1 M16A1 upper
2 Romy AK parts kits
1 Bulgi '74 kit
1 ITM 5.45 AK reciever
3 sets of US compliance parts (trigger group, grips, gas pistons) and rivet sets
2 AR mags
2 hungarian steel AK mags (already have a stack of AK mags at home, have a Nork SKS)
100 rounds of .223
100 rounds of 7.62
1 box each of .45, .40, 8mm mauser, 6.5x55 swede, .22lr bulk pack, .308
1 CZ75 compact magazine
1 C&R CZ82 pistol
1 Polish PPsh41 parts kit
1 AK stock with rear trunnion (going to build the '74 as a fixed stock)
1 DPMS bolt group and charging handle

And, I'll be buying magazines, ammo, bits and pieces, and possibly machines tools, as we go along and test the waters.

I think I've got a good coverage of bare-minimum here. The only rifle I don't have any ammunition for now is the type 38 arisaka, and the only one I don't have at least a full box for is the type 99 arisaka.... I think I've done well. I could use some more pistol ammo though, particularly 7.62x25, but I don't see as much a threat there as with the rifle ammo. I already have a setup suitable for reloading pretty much any pistol cartridge, provided I have the dies.

The pain comes when I start paying *back*. Maybe the magic O will dissolve or absolve everyone's credit debt :-D

As far as the AK builds go, I'm just planning the basics here, nothing special. The Bulgi '74 will be a "regular" build, one Romy will get nice wood stocks and stock everything else, and the other Romy is going to have some svelte polymer stocks, a modest top rail and red dot sight, and no front sight or flash hider. The rail there is likely to be one I've seen that clips/clamps into the read sight base, I want it as low and as solid as possible. The PPsh41 I'll probably leave alone for a while, maybe make my own receiver, though I'll be finding mags soon. I don't think it's very bright on gun-grabber's radar, except for the capacity.