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Massad Ayoob on Guns

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Archive for September 1st, 2017

Massad Ayoob


Friday, September 1st, 2017

“The Guns of August” were, for me, retro; see earlier August blog entries here.  It’s August 31, and tonight I’ll regretfully clean my classic old Smith & Wesson Model 19s and put them back in the safe.

Some of the students asked if I didn’t feel disadvantaged carrying something that only held six cartridges.  You know, I can’t say that I did.  At any given time, I had a speedloader or two. The very fast, very reliable Safariland Comp III looks bulky, but it rides with amazing comfort and discretion in the cell phone pocket of cargo pants, or one of the pockets in a photographer’s vest.  You may not get to where YOU can reload a six-gun faster than YOU can reload an auto pistol, but you can damn well get faster with a revolver than the average street mope with a stolen autoloader:

Or view the video here.

I usually have a Bianchi Speed Strip somewhere on my person, too. Very easy to carry, so flat and discreet you can hide one in the watch pocket of a pair of jeans, but certainly slower than a speedloader:

Or view speed strip video here.

And, for that matter, I usually have another whole damn gun, anyway:

Or watch the video here.

One of the main reasons I tried a revolver for the four 40-hour classes on my August teaching tour was that a double action six-shooter allows the student to better see the distributed trigger pull: they can watch the revolver’s long trigger pull through both retraction and return, they can watch the uninterrupted cylinder rotation, and they can see the rise and fall of the hammer.  By the end of the month, at the wonderful Harrisburg Hunters and Anglers’ club in Pennsylvania, there were three of us staff on the line with revolvers and I told the class, “If any of your coaches this week told you that you were jerking or mashing the trigger, watch the revolver shooters. And do something else: bring your empty gun hand up in front of your face as you’re watching, and run your index finger at exactly the same pace as the shooter you have in view.”  That gave them sixty repetitions of running that trigger finger before they shot their own qualifications…and their own qual scores, including some new shooters, averaged about 97%. Roughly half the class said that demonstration helped them with their own trigger pulls when the pressure was on.

I think I might be onto something with this revolver as teaching tool business. I’ve said for decades that some quality time running a revolver in double action mode will teach you to better control the trigger of your semiautomatic pistol.

My September has a vacation week in it, and one all-classroom CLE program, with two 40-hour MAG-40s that include live fire. As it happens, I have gun magazine assignments to write up a couple of Polymer Parabellum Pistols, so my teaching guns will be 9mm autos, the new Gen5 Glock and the almost-as-new FN 509.  I’ll have a wheel-gun along, though, if only for demonstration purposes.


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