Saturday, January 17, 2009

Range Report

Hit the Ikes range today (going to get a membership there soon) with a few friends. Took the Carbine out and put a few rounds through it, as did some of the friends. She worked fine as always. Also got to shoot one of the friends' XD-9, which was enjoyable. As previously stated whenever I get around buying a new manufacture handgun an XD will be at the top of the list, although probably in .40.

More exciting was shooting my CZ vz.82. Initial impressions are very good. Trigger pull in SA was crisp and fairly short. DA was an eternity, but given the fact that it has an external safety and no decocker, carrying cocked and locked would seem to be the best option anyway. Grip feel was acceptable, but could be much improved with some quality wooden grips. The plastic ones are more than a little chintzy. Probably going to be heading here for those. Only one FTF; it occurred with the Sellier and Bellot ammo. However, I think this was a fluke, and in any case this will be the ammo I choose to use as the Silver Bear stuff seemed to give the gun a much sharper recoil. While I'm sure part of this was the fact that my hands were frozen by the point I started shooting that ammo, the cold can't explain the fact that sparks would occasionally fly out of the ejection port as the gun ejected the spent shell. This is probably a combination of the blowback action (no delay between cartridge firing and the slide separating from the barrel) and some poor quality powder. Regardless, this didn't occur with either of the other two manufacturers I fired and occurred more than once with the Silver Bear. The 25 Hornady XTP JHPs that I put through fed without a hitch. While 9x18 Makarov isn't the best choice for a personal defense round, it's better than using .30 Carbine and will do for now until I get my Sig P225 in 9mm Luger.

Most exciting, though, was getting to shoot my friend Patrick's Nagant 91/59. For those of you that don't know, the Nagant was the standard Russian/Soviet battle rifle from, as you might have guessed, 1891 until right around WWII. However, it continued to serve around the world after WWII. One of the most interesting variants is the 91/59, which has a carbine length barrel. What makes the 91/59 interesting is that unlike the purpose built Nagant carbines, the 91/59 was manufactured from cutting down a full length 91/30. 7.62x54R is a man's round if you are shooting it from a full size rifle. Shooting it from a carbine borders on the insane. I shot around 10 rounds out of it today and my shoulder is still feeling it. I can honestly say that the carbine length Nagants kick like mules. The other interesting thing about the carbine length Nagants is that firing a round from a barrel shorter than it was originally designed for means there is a lot of unburnt powder still behind the bullet when it exits the barrel. As you might expect, this powder becomes a fireball that projects a few feet beyond the end of the barrel, which is visible even when shooting in broad daylight. If you haven't yet experienced a carbine length Nagant, I highly recommend it.