- "Ruger Mini-14/30 Barrel Twist Rates"--Sunflower Ammo. I cited to this article in my post on the Mini-14, but thought I would throw it out again. It breaks down the twist rate according to both the year of manufacture and serial number. Good resource for those with a Mini or thinking about getting one.
- The futility of gun bans: "Four Homemade Submachine Guns Confiscated Near Sydney, Australia"--The Truth About Guns. I've mentioned something like this before, but it bears repeating: "When extreme restrictions are placed on the manufacture, acquisition and ownership of legal automatic firearms, one of the easiest repeaters to make at home or in small workshops is the submachine gun."
- "Safe storage and self defense aren’t incompatible"--Grant Cunningham. Grant Cunningham is a proponent of using a safe or secure cabinet to store firearms for the safety of children or irresponsible adults. In this article, he argues that safe storage does not render a firearm unusable for self-defense when you combine a quick access safe with a layered defense (e.g., motion lights, alarms, secured doors and windows, etc.). That is, "your first indication of a threat shouldn’t be your door flying off its hinges." He contends that "[s]ince any stored or staged firearm is, by definition, one which you need to get to, the slight additional access time shouldn’t be seen as an issue. In other words, it takes far longer to get to the quick-access lockbox than it does to open it."
While I don't disagree with this in principle, I believe that it is an issue that is deserving of more nuance. As I've noted before, you generally have to balance safe gun storage (or carry) against speed of access. And while in theory you should have sufficient warning of someone attempting to get into your home, there may be many reasons that you don't. For instance, if you rent a house or apartment, you may not have a lot of control to set your home up with different locks, security doors, thorny shrubs outside windows, etc. Your home may have inherent weaknesses that make it easier for someone to enter, such as sliding glass doors, French doors with glass panels, or similar weak areas. Another issue is whether you have or use air conditioning. While it is more rare than it used to be, the fact is that some people have to leave windows open to allow air circulation in warmer weather--and an open window may allow someone to enter the home. (And even if this isn't an issue for you now, it might be if you have a power outage).
The risk of not having a gun stored in a safe or cabinet may also be minimal. If you never have children in your home, the likelihood of child accessing a firearm is unlikely.
And finally, not all quick access lock boxes or safes are reliable or as quick to access as you might think. Finger print scanners can be finicky and unreliable and push button or key locks may be hard to open quickly in the dark and under stress.
I'm not trying to talk anyone out of getting a safe or steel cabinet/lock box. I'm just noting that you need to look at your overall situation and may need to adjust how you access your firearms according to changing circumstances. One thing that I wholeheartedly agree with Cunningham about is this, though:
One of your many responsibilities as a gun owner is to always be sure of your target; in a defensive context, that means you need to be certain there is an actual threat — someone who poses an immediate and otherwise unavoidable danger of death to you or other innocents. Inside of your home, particularly when the lights are off, this means a pause before you go to guns. Most of the time such a pause includes grabbing a flashlight to find out who’s making all the racket. Most of the time it’s not something (or someone) that needs an extra orifice.
- "How To Pocket Carry"--Alien Gear Holsters. Pocket carry is one of the easiest ways to carry a concealed weapon, and a method that almost every concealed carrier will use whether they originally intended to or not. This article has great tips on pocket carry, but, as the author notes, "First and foremost, you need a pocket holster. If you don't do anything else that's mentioned in this article, you're already head and shoulders above a lot of folks that are taking silly chances with their safety."
- Related: "Smith & Wesson Model 442 Revolver: My Concealed-Carry Companion"--Shooting Illustrated." The author mentions, "On those nasty winter days, I'll wear a larger gun on my hip—usually a 1911—under a heavy coat. But the little 442 doesn't stay at home. It rides in the pocket of my winter coat in case, when trouble comes, I don't have time to unzip the coat."
- Related: "NAA Mini Revolvers: Built for Backup Use"--Shooting Illustrated. The author writes:
I’ve been fortunate enough to spend a lot of time at Gunsite Academy, and I’m a firm believer in the school's doctrine and training. But like most people once they return home, I get lazy and do what’s convenient rather than what’s prudent. A quick trip to gas the car, get a haircut or satisfy my craving for a chorizo-and-egg burrito frequently involves me leaving the house less than fully prepared for danger.
In fact, many tend to go for the tiny solutions that take about two seconds to grab and drop into a pocket, like a Ruger LCP II or a Kel-Tec P3AT. ...
- "Yes, the U.S. Military Loves Shotguns."--National Interest. During WWI, our troops had shotguns for the close combat of clearing enemy trenches and pill boxes. Use was more limited during WWII and the Vietnam War. But...
Shotguns became increasingly common among U.S. combat troops at the tail end of the Cold War, as the threat of terrorism moved combat into urban areas, aboard oil rigs, ships and aircraft. Shotguns were issued to special operations forces, ship crews, boarding parties, and U.S. Marine Corps Fleet Anti-terrorism Security Teams. The U.S. Army’s Delta Force fielded a cut down pump action shotgun fitted underneath the barrel of a M16 pattern rifle. Nicknamed “the Masterkey” , the shotgun was used as a breaching tool to fire solid slugs pointblank against door locks.
Today shotguns are still part of US and NATO arsenals. The U.S. Marine Corps fields both the Mossberg 500 series pump shotgun , 590 series shotgun, and M1014 semi-automatic shotguns . The U.S. Army, is replacing Mossberg 500 series shotguns with the new M26 Modular Accessory Shotgun System, or MASS . A bolt action, magazine fed shotgun, the M26 can be used alone with a shoulder stock or attached under the barrel of a M4 carbine. Even the German Army has done an about face on shotguns, issuing the Remington 870 Police Magnum to airborne engineer and special operations troops.
- "How to Pepper Spray"--Recoil Magazine. An advantage to pepper spray I hadn't considered:
OC is widely accepted in our society, so much so that it’s common to see spray in purses. It’s socially acceptable to do things like walk out to your car across the dreaded dark parking lot with your OC in hand. Doing so with a gun will likely cause alarm to bystanders, or even cause the police to be called. With OC, people don’t even bat an eye, if they even notice. This allows a defender to have a near instantaneous response to an assailant.
The author also advises that you should "[look for a product with a MCC content of at least 0.7 to 0.8. ... A good top end is the common 'police strength' 1.33% MCC." And if it doesn't list an MCC content, look for a different product. Also, "[y]our OC spray canister should have some sort of safety built into it to avoid accidental discharge. Finally, the author discusses different options for spray patterns (or gel), and a brief primer on how to use your spray. Check it out.