Heavy or Light Bullet Grains for Self-Defense? Considerations and Recommendations

It is very important to evaluate and use the correct bullet weight or grain for your particular handgun purpose and application. Several factors and the inter-relationships among bullet grain, muzzle velocity, muzzle energy, penetration, expansion, recoil, and terminal ballistics for any specific load and handgun affect a shooter’s results and accuracy.

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OSD 112: Unbrace yourself
The NFA is pro mass incarceration. A history of why gun control has seemed like the thing that smart, kind people are supposed to think — and why that’s changing.

As expected, the ATF is going to be redefining what they consider legal and illegal with 80% receivers and pistol braces. They’ll be announcing details over the next 1-2 months, but the main effects will be:

  • An immediate slate of lawsuits that may or may not succeed in blocking the redefinitions
  • More attention on the ATF’s definition of what a receiver is in the first place. AR lowers are not covered by the current definition (disclaimer: this isn’t legal advice!), and several defendants have gotten their charges dropped by pushing that issue in court. People on all sides have avoided talking about that, because it’s not especially in anyone’s interests to open the “let’s redefine the fundamental rules of what constitutes a receiver” can of worms. But that may not be avoidable for much longer.
  • Several million brace owners will suddenly be guilty of NFA violations punishable by ten years in prison. That’s the National Firearms Act, the law from 1934 that makes it so that long guns are legal, short guns are legal, and medium guns are extremely illegal. Unless you pay a $200 tax, fill out a piece of paper, and wait a few months, in which case they’re legal again.

It’s that last bullet point we want to focus on this week. Around the announcement of these executive orders, there’s been a push to brand pistol braces as the new boogeyman. (We’d refer you here, as ever, to “The Submarine”, Paul Graham’s classic essay about how PR campaigns work.)

That tactic has been smart. If you’ve ever explained barrel length laws and pistol braces to a newbie — we have, many times — you know that the modal response is something like, “Well that’s the dumbest law I’ve heard of in a long time. Why should anyone go to jail over that?” So in polite society, one can’t argue from scratch that a pistol brace should send you to prison for ten years. Instead, you have to present a pistol brace ban as an innocuous extension to a law that people don’t even think to question.

Here’s the general principle:

A pistol brace ban is the proximate mistruth. But the foundational lie is the NFA itself. Consider the following two statements:

  1. The NFA is an 87-year-old gun law, and pistol braces are dancing around the edges of it. The ATF should scrutinize pistol braces for compliance with the law.
  2. The police should take you to prison for ten years if your gun’s barrel is 15” long instead of 16”.

Those are the same statement. One sounds reasonable and one sounds medieval. But people are being allowed to appear in public and say #1 without confronting the fact that they’re also saying #2.

The reason, as we explained in “OSD 110: What smart people are supposed to think”, is that this is a game of mood affiliation (the term is a Tyler Cowen-ism). To understand barrel length laws, you have to spend dozens of hours reading about the technical nuances. Most people don’t have time for that, so most people don’t understand these issues. But we have to think something about them, so we take a shortcut. The shortcut is that we just believe whatever seems like the polite thing to believe.

This seems insurmountable: how can you get through to people who don’t have time to learn the details? Well, mood affiliation is a two-way street. Because all information about guns used to filter through a handful of TV channels and newspapers, gun control has long enjoyed a complacent monopoly on “this is the polite thing to think”.

But that is slipping away in real time. Contrary to popular belief, gun rights have been getting nearly-monotonically more popular for 25+ years. The installed base of AR-15s is ~50x what it was at the time of the ‘94 ban, and its growth is only accelerating (numbers in the same link from the previous sentence). And most importantly, despite the best efforts of centralized content crackdowns, empirically it has never been easier to learn about guns than it is today. Still not even close to as easy as we’d like, but it has undeniably never been easier.

Over the next few weeks, there’s going to be a lot of discussion about pistol braces. Don’t run away from it — embrace, expand, and amplify it. Every mention of a pistol brace ban should be embraced and expanded into what it is — a proud endorsement of a decade in prison for a 15.9” barrel — and then loudly amplified. If somebody wants to tie their name to the philosophy of mass incarceration, they’re free to do so. In 2021, we’ll see who still thinks that’s the polite thing to believe.

Vista Outdoor Announces July Price Increases for Components & Ammo

April 1, 2021

Dear Customer:

Thank you for your business and for your continued support of American jobs and manufacturing. With new capital investments and unprecedented raw material price increases during these last few months, it is necessary to raise prices.

Effective 7/1/2021 CCI, Federal, Remington, and SPEER ammunition will take a price increase of 7% across all products from our last price list and Primers will increase 15%.

Unless you notify us to cancel an order, we will reprice all existing and future orders shipped on or after 7/1/2021 to the new 7/1 prices.

You will receive your finalized price list no later than May 28th.

Thank you for your continued support of our brands and our American workforce.

Yason R. Vanderbrink

President Ammunition

Fiocchi Announces Ammunition Price Increases for 2021

Thank you for your commitment and support of Fiocchi and B&P Ammunition during these unprecedented times.

We continue to experience materials cost increases including but not limited to copper, lead and zinc. Due to these increases we are announcing an ammunition price increase effective April 30, 2021. All open orders and backorders are subject to the increase and will be repriced accordingly unless we are notified that you would like to cancel.

The following categories are subject to the increases shown below.


Centerfire Pistol: 5%-15%
Centerfire Rifle: 5%
Rimfire: 5%
Slug & Buck: 15%
Promotional & Target/Game Shotshells: 7%

Target/Uplandloads: 5%-10%
Please expect new pricing and programs in the coming weeks.


Michael Halleron

Vice President, Sales

With all the past history of the same thing happening every time a demoncrap does crap-for-brains idiocy like this, I’m starting to wonder if ‘unintended consequences’ really fits anymore.

Thousands attend gun show in Jacksonville after Biden orders gun control actions

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Thousands of people attended the North Florida Gun and Knife Show over the weekend at the Duval County Fairgrounds.

The two-day event was held after President Joe Biden announced a half-dozen executive actions to combat gun violence. The president also called on Congress to pass legislation to reduce gun violence after recent mass shootings in Atlanta, Colorado and South Carolina.

“Anytime something comes out of Washington and they say the word ‘gun,’ everything goes up,” said Victor Bean, the owner of Southern Classic Gun and Knife Shows.

This weekend’s event attracted firstcomers and gun enthusiasts.

“Just a good selection of firearms, and today is my birthday, so maybe I will get myself a good birthday present,” Chris Carroll, who lives in Clay County, told News4Jax on Sunday.

Mike Chance, a Jacksonville resident, said he was looking forward to looking at ammunition.

“Well, it’s millions and millions of dollars’ worth of guns and ammo,” Bean said.

More than 283 vendors and 386 displays were at the show in Jacksonville, according to Bean.

“Everybody wants the self-defense right now, and the high-capacity mags, of course, they are talking about legislation right now,” Bean said.

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Over 200 former Remington Arms employees expected to be called back by month’s end

The former Remington Arms plant in Ilion has reopened under its new ownership, and some former employees are getting back to work.

“We have called back approximately 45 employees as of this week that along with the 20 management people that have been back for several weeks now,” Richmond Italia, a managing partner for the Roundhill Group Inc., owner of RemArms, the plant’s new operator, said in an email. “And we expect to round that number off to over 200 before the end of the month.”

The move came after United Mine Workers of America and RemArms, the plant’s new operator, reached a letter of agreement that paved the way for reopening the plant.

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It’s basically the SGB -Small Game Bullet- in a lighter weight.


In the early 1980s, the combined wisdom of Jeff Cooper and Whit Collins created the 10mm Auto cartridge. Dornaus & Dixon introduced their Bren Ten pistol as Norma, their initial commercial loading for it, a 200-grain FMJ bullet running at 1,200 feet per second at 37,500 lbs. per square inch pressure. The Bren didn’t survive, but three things happened to save the 10mm — 1) Colt chambered their Government Model for it as the Delta Elite, keeping it available to shooters; 2) The FBI, briefly, adopted the 10mm in the form of the Smith & Wesson Model 1076; and 3) Folks who were in the land of big, people-eating bears realized large-diameter bullets with enhanced velocities were good prevention against becoming Purina Bear Chow, with more bullets giving you more chances.

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Sounds reasonable. Other people than I have pondered if demoncraps who spout off about gun control actually own gun company stock and use their rhetoric to increase the value of their ‘blind trusts’


First Quarter NICS Checks for Gun Sales Spurred by Gun Control Demands

The National Shooting Sports Foundation is reporting that the “NSSF-adjusted” figures for background checks related to gun sales in March were the second strongest for the month on record, and were likely spurred by calls for tougher gun laws following two high-profile mass shooting incidents.

“It is clear that firearm sales in March were driven by gun control calls from politicians to ban entire classes of firearms and enact onerous gun laws,” suggested Mark Oliva, NSSF public affairs director. “Americans continue to vote with their wallets when it comes to lawful firearm ownership.” Continue reading “”

Travel Tips for Flying with Firearms, Ammunition, and Silencers

While innumerable people love to travel and see the world, it can still often times be a stressful event until you arrive at your destination. Sometimes you cannot get to the airport on time, your shuttle is late, the security checkpoint is log-jammed with people, and/or you get an all too friendly pat down you did not sign up for. All in all, I love to travel, but like many people there are a lot of tiny, stressful obstacles in the way. If you are also a firearms lover and are traveling to a hunt with firearms, ammunition, and/or a silencer that adds another layer of difficulty to your journey. If you have never flown with firearms and the like before we have a few travel tips to help ease the pain of that additional baggage you will be bringing with.

If you are traveling with firearms, silencers, and/or ammunition you will want to check the regulations for the airline you are traveling with before your flight. While every airline is different, they simultaneously have a lot of overlap in their rules and guidelines to follow. As an example, these are the baggage guidelines from Delta Airlines regarding “Flying with Firearms, Ammunition & Explosives:”

We allow small arms ammunition, in quantities not exceeding 11 lbs. (5 kg) per person, as checked-baggage only. The weapon must be securely boxed and intended for that person’s own use. More than one passenger may not combine quantities into one package. See more details/guidelines under shooting equipment.

You are responsible for knowledge of and compliance with all Federal, State or local laws regarding the possession and transportation of firearms.

Note: Gunpowder (e.g., Pyrodex, black powder, mace, pepper spray and tear gas) is never permitted.

While this talks about weight and predictable jargon of “follow local laws,” it gives no guidance on how to store your actual arms and ammunition. Can you use a brown paper bag (please don’t)? Is a duffle bag OK? While it might be comical in your head to attempt some of my joke ideas above you will quickly land yourself in a chat with airport security and you might lose your flying privileges for some time. Here are a few travel tips that are easy to remember:

  1. Use a Pelican brand or similar style, robust case – When traveling, similar to your normal luggage, it is going to get chucked around the airport like a baggage handler is auditioning for shot put in the Olympics. So, bag your ammunition, firearms, and/or silencer in a very sturdy case for protection.
  2. Use TSA-Approved locks on the exterior of your case – While I have always thought the actual TSA-Approved locks were some of the cheapest and flimsiest locks on the market, if you use different ones they might be prone to cut them to look into your box and you could be ushered through an additional verbal interview (interrogation) before your flight. So, opt for the cheap TSA-Approved locks on your case.
  3. Bring documentation even if it is unnecessary – If you have a copy of your Tax Stamp for a silencer, a receipt for the ammunition you bought, or home owner’s insurance documentation for the firearm you own and are traveling bring it all with. It is “better to have and not need than need and not have” especially when dealing with the TSA.

None of us surely want to get an extra “talking to” while at the airport and while we have firearms in our luggage so hopefully these few travels tips were a bit of help. As exciting as it can be to go on a hunt in a faraway land, hopefully it goes as smoothly as possible. As always, let us know all of your thoughts in the Comments below especially if you have some travel tips of your own. We always appreciate when you give us feedback.

Cimarron’s Mike Harvey Introduces the Legendary 1887 Lever-Action Shotgun

The True Story Behind Tom Threepersons and His Holster

While little is known about Tom Threepersons, the larger-than-life exploits of the Native American lawman reveal him to have been a jack-of-all trades, but master of armed conflict.

It isn’t big enough to deserve the title of “library” so I can’t logically call it one, but there are sure a lot of books in that back room. Ever since I settled in one place, I have given free rein to my quiet thirst for all kinds of books about guns, gun equipment and gun people. A purge is inevitable, but it pains me to think of such a thing. I need them all. There’s always another pressing research project (with another pressing deadline) just over the horizon.

For the matter at hand, after a detailed search of my accumulation of material, as well as that of the local library and the encyclopedic internet—I’m stumped. I am unable to find anything meaty, solid, substantial or documented about a particular Western personality. I don’t doubt his existence—I just want the whole story. If a couple of tales are true, this frontier character had exploits that could have kept a phalanx of lurid, dime-store novelists hard at work for many suns.

His name was Tom Threepersons. Right out front, you have to understand that there were two of them and both were of Native American heritage and both were avid rodeo competitors. The one who was also known for gun work spelled his surname Threepersons, while the rodeo star made it Three Persons. A Native American of Cherokee descent, our Tom was born in 1889 in the Indian Territories and grew up there and on Montana’s border with Canada.

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Uh Oh: ATF Meeting With Firearms Industry On “Ghost Guns”

Representatives from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives are meeting with leaders in the firearms industry today, and the discussion is expected to focus on the federal definition of what a firearm actually is. Under the Gun Control Act of 1968, a firearm is defined as “(A) any weapon (including a starter gun) which will or is designed to or may readily be converted to expel a projectile by the action of an explosive; (B) the frame or receiver of any such weapon; (C) any firearm muffler or firearm silencer; or (D) any destructive device.”

It’s those frames and receivers that the ATF wants to talk about, because gun control activists want the ATF to redefine firearms to include uncompleted frames and receivers. Because they’re not finished parts, the ATF doesn’t define them as firearms, meaning they can be sold without a background check and finished by the purchaser. As long as the home-built firearm doesn’t enter the stream of commerce, it’s not required to be serialized either, and gun control activists want that to change; requiring background checks and serialization of unfinished gun parts as well as fully finished firearms.

The Wall Street Journal, which was the first to report on the meeting, says the confab is a sign that the Biden administration may be getting ready to make a move targeting the unfinished frames and receivers, and while the industry is willing to listen, it sounds like they’re reluctant to go along with any demands for changes.

The National Shooting Sports Foundation, which represents the gun industry, will participate in the meeting as will several firearms manufacturers.

“We have not seen credible evidence and statistics demonstrating that this is a significant issue,” said Lawrence Keane, the NSSF’s general counsel. “We are happy to have a dialogue with the ATF as we always are on issues that impact industry.”

There have been growing calls to regulate ghost guns in the past few months. Separately, Democratic lawmakers and gun control groups have called for new regulations following mass shootings in Atlanta and Boulder. Friday’s meeting was planned before those massacres.

On Monday, 18 Democratic state attorneys general sent a letter to Attorney General Merrick Garland urging him to act on ghost guns. Earlier this month, four Democratic senators sent a letter to President Joe Biden, asking him to direct the ATF to “regulate these firearms under the Gun Control Act and ensure that they are subject to a background check.”

Biden has this week called on Congress to tighten the nation’s gun laws. The Democrat urged lawmakers to pass legislation to expand background checks and ban weapons like the AR-15 style gun used by the Boulder shooter.

He didn’t mention ghost guns. But Biden administration officials discussed the topic with gun-control advocates at a February meeting, the White House said.

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Letter: There’s no historical basis for ban on ‘ghost guns’

In referring to the so-called ghost gun loophole, Steve Henshaw called the right to purchase nonfirearm materials for the purpose of manufacturing arms a travesty (“Tighten law on DIY guns,” Reading Eagle, March 20). The only travesty is the belief that others do not have an inherent right to self-defense, and that the right extends to the home manufacture of firearms, an activity that predates the American Revolution itself.

The only historical bases for banning individuals from possessing firearms and related products, e.g. gunpowder, were when those who would be or were in possession were a demonstrable threat to the safety of others, or where they were perceived as a threat due to their status as a racial minority, slave, or freedman — an actual travesty.

There is simply no constitutionally supported basis from precluding the manufacture of firearms — when the Supreme Court issued its decision in District of Columbia v. Heller, it specified that the test for determining the constitutionality of gun laws was whether the law was supported by text, history and tradition; “ghost gun” bans are supported by none of them. People who are spooked by “ghost guns” perhaps should look behind the veil and address the actual crimes which they are being used to support, if any.

Logan D. Lecates

Hegins, Schuylkill County



March 25, 2021
For immediate release

VICTORY: Court Rules a Bump Stock is NOT a Machine Gun

Springfield, VA – Today, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit reversed the district court’s decision, which had denied GOA’s motion for a preliminary injunction on bump stocks. Gun Owners of America is seeking an injunction to prevent ATF from implementing a final rule incorrectly classifying bump stocks as machineguns under federal law.

This case was brought by Gun Owners of America (GOA), Gun Owners Foundation (GOF), the Virginia Citizens Defense League (VCDL), Matt Watkins, Tim Harmsen of the Military Arms Channel, and GOA’s Texas Director, Rachel Malone.

“Today’s court decision is great news and told gun owners what they already knew,” said GOA Senior Vice President Erich Pratt. “We are glad the court applied the statute accurately, and struck down the ATF’s illegal overreach and infringement of gun owners’ rights.”

Uzi Does It

Belgian Cops Tasked With Guarding NATO Headquarters Still Wield The Iconic Uzi Submachine Gun

Though unquestionably iconic, the original Israeli Uzi submachine gun is an increasingly uncommon sight among Western security forces. However, recently released pictures show that Belgian Federal Police tasked with guarding NATO’s main operational headquarters in Brussels still have access to these guns.

The U.S. military released the images of the Belgian Federal Police personnel training with their Uzis at an indoor range at the Training Support Center at Chièvres Air Base. Chièvres is situated around 12 miles from NATO’s Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe (SHAPE), home of the Alliance’s Allied Command Operations (ACO), in the city of Mons.


A Belgian Federal Police officer cocks their Uzi submachine gun while training at an indoor range at Chièvres Air Base.

The pictures also show officers training with their Smith & Wesson M&P9 pistols. The American gunmaker won a contract to supply these 9mm handguns to the Belgian Federal Police in 2011.

A Belgian Federal Police officer aims their Smith & Wesson M&P9 pistol. Continue reading “”

Winchester Announces 2021 Price Increases on Ammunition and Reloading Supplies

March 22, 2021

To All Winchester Ammunition Customers:

Thank you for your commitment to Winchester and Browning Ammunition in support of our legendary products. 

Due to the increased cost inputs for manufacturing ammunition, it is necessary to increase ammunition prices for all shipments, including backorders, beginning May 1, 2021. 

Ammunition will be subject to the following price increases. 

  • Shotshells + 5%-12%
  • 22 Magnum Rimfire ammunition + 5%-15%
  • Hunting Rifle ammunition + 5%-15%
  • All Centerfire Pistol ammunition +8%
  • Components +10%
  • Primers +25% (Due to our current backorder situation, until further notice, Winchester is not accepting new orders on primers)

These May 1, 2021 increases will affect all pack sizes, sub-brands, and special make-ups. 

All existing orders and future orders shipped on or after May 1, 2021, will be shipped at the new prices unless you notify us requesting cancellation. Procedures for repricing back and future orders will be issued with new pricelists and programs in the coming weeks. 


Matt Campbell

Vice President, Sales & Marketing