It lives! - Jay Maynard

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Wednesday, 1 September 2004


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1722 - It lives!

I bought a pistol several years ago to serve as my IPSC "race gun". It's a Para-Ordnance P15-40, built on the same pattern as John Browning's famous Colt M1911 .45 ACP service pistol that was the standard US sidearm for many years. The 1911 is one of those things that people either love or hate. It's got some unique features, and lends itself readily to all kinds of modifications.

The P15-40 is a case in point: instead of firing seven .45 ACP cartridges before reloading, this one fires up to 15 .40 S&W cartridges. (Due to the bit of idiocy known as the Brady Law, I can only fire 11: 10 in the magazine, one in the chamber. Perhaps when that law expires, I can either legally convert my existing magazines to their full capacity or obtain new ones.) The grip is thicker than the M1911 to accommodate a double-stacked magazine. The gun feels better in my hand because of that, although that's intensely personal. Other changes include different levers for the slide stop and the safety. Of course, the barrel is different as well.

I haven't been able to fire mine since not long after I bought it. To disassemble the 1911, you push in a plug that holds in the recoil spring, then move a catch out of the way and release the spring tension. The last time I did that, my thumb slipped off of the spring and sent the plug flying. I wasn't able to find it, and the gun was rendered inoperable.

I got a new plug in today. It was too long (probably being made to fit the pistol's big brother, the P16-40), but five minutes with a Dremel tool fixed that. It appears to work just fine. I need to get hold of the folks who run the indoor range here in Fairmont and pay up for this year so I can check it out for sure. Assuming that everything works, it's going to Linucon with me for the Geeks with Guns event. I'll be interested to see what 1911 fan Eric Raymond thinks of it.

current mood: [mood icon] pleased

(14 comments | Leave a comment)

Comments:


[User Picture]
From:bronxelf_ag001
Date: - 0000
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I don't get it. I mean if you already have 11:10, then what is the difference between that and just filling the chamber? Who *cares* at that point?

I don't get the brady law. I never have.
[User Picture]
From:bronxelf_ag001
Date: - 0000
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magazine, not chamber.

You knew what I meant.
[User Picture]
From:jmaynard
Date: - 0000
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The Brady Law makes it illegal to make a magazine that holds more than 10 cartridges, or to modify one to do so. I've got 8 of them, total, 7 of which are actually for the P16-40 (and thus longer, so they stick out a little past the end of the grip).

I've never understood it. This was the favorite crusade of a NYC representative who lost her husband in the LIRR shooting, but it just doesn't make sense to me. A skilled shooter can swap magazines in under a second, and I can do it in about two. If I carry all 8 magazines fully loaded and start with one in the chamber, I can fire 81 rounds without having to take time to refill magazines (which is a time-consuming operation). I see little difference between that and 115. If I were going to go on a rampage, I'd just buy more magazines if I felt the need to fire more rounds.

Nobody ever said a law had to make sense. We've certainly got enough of them on the books that don't.
[User Picture]
From:bronxelf_ag001
Date: - 0000
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Yes. Cunningham is her name. She lost her husband and her son was permanently disabled when Colin Ferguson shot up the LIRR train years ago. She's a congressperson now, based on that one issue (which is really sad-- not that she's not a nice person, or you don't feel sorry for her, but to base an election win on that... well you know what I mean there.)

BTW she is not a rep. from NYC. She is a rep from Long Island. Just clearing that up.

I agree about the brady law. Once you have one shot, you can have five shots, you can have 10, you can have 16. For someone who is good with a firearm *it doesn't matter*. All you do is add more magazines. Colin Ferguson *RELOADED* his weapon, and kept shooting. So why this matters, I have no idea.

[User Picture]
From:jmaynard
Date: - 0000
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There's a lady in Minnesota, Patty Wetterling, who's running against Representative Mark Kennedy on largely the same kind of basis (though her personal tragedy is that her son disappeared one day and has never been found). Kennedy is the guy Michael Moore ambushed and then lied about through careful editing. Wetterling has her work cut out for her, in a fairly strong Republican district, but you never know...
[User Picture]
From:bronxelf_ag001
Date: - 0000
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I *hate* that ambush shit. I hate it when 60 minutes does it, I hate it whem Michael Moore does it.. It always feels like you're listening to a prank phone call.

Feh.
[User Picture]
From:michaelmink
Date: - 0000
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I thought it was Carolyn McCarthy (not to be confused with my congresscritter, Carolyn Maloney)?
[User Picture]
From:bronxelf_ag001
Date: - 0000
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Right! McCarthy. Jebus. Why did I mix that up with Cunningham?


(why did cunningham sit in my head? I have no idea.)

THANK YOU.


I do know she's from LI, not from NYC.
[User Picture]
From:phanatic
Date: - 0000
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A skilled shooter can swap magazines in under a second, and I can do it in about two.

Well, yeah, at the range. I'd imagine things run a bit differently in a combat situation, where two seconds can make you dead.

That's why I want as big a magazine as is practical, instead of being artificially limited by some artifact of law. If I'm in a life-or-death situation, I want to avoid having to reload at all.
[User Picture]
From:jmaynard
Date: - 0000
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You should attend an IPSC match sometime. Good IPSC shooters routinely swap magazines in under a second. An IPSC course is as close to a combat situation as you can get without having people shooting at you. It's also the most fun you can have with a pistol in your hand, IMAO.

Yes, I agree that big magazines are preferable to small ones. I'm just saying that the rationale for the Brady 10-round limit is especially st00pid.
[User Picture]
From:ricdragon
Date: - 0000

Reload time

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I'm going to stick my nose in from across the pond here with a couple of points.

In the UK, pistols are banned. (boo hiss) However, airsoft replicas are not. I could harp on about totally different ballisitics, the fact that they're non lethal etc etc, but that's beside the point.

I both Skirmish and do IPSC over here with airsoft guns. The main difference is that on an IPSC range, the targets don't shoot back. In skirmishing against friends, they're out to get me.. as I am out to get them. Either way, when using pistols my reload times are under a second, even less if I'm jsut dumping the spent mag for a fresh one rather than trying to save the mag for reloading. (Note i do actually save my mags, just when under fire I tend to put them down, reload then look for where i left them after the game's ended). All reload time comes down to is practice and knowing where your mags are!

As to the sixe of mags? well for note I normally use a CZ75 or a SV Infinity Tac Carry (4.3inch frame with a 3.9inch slide..) Both types of mags hold 27-30 rounds (BBs). Way beyond real steel capacities, but then the guns are not as accurate! I think i'm doing well if I can double tap a person at 40 yds and have both rounds hit, IPSC ranges are normally a lot shorter, with resultant increace in accuracy.

RW
[User Picture]
From:jmaynard
Date: - 0000

Re: Reload time

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The IPSC shooters I've seen reload by holding the pistol in the shooting hand, punching the magazine release, and letting the empty fall to the ground. While that's going on, the other hand is getting the fresh magazine and bringing it to the butt of the pistol, slapping it in place as soon as the magazine well is clear. It's truly an amazing thing to watch.

40 yards?! That's well beyond what's considered normal pistol combat range, and I'd consider myself fortunate to double-tap an opponent and have both rounds hit at that range too. I can see why you'd want that kind of distance if someone is shooting at you (even BBs can hurt, especially at close range), but IPSC courses are designed for a much more realistic distance. Where IPSC courses fall down is that the course of fire, were it to present itself in the real world, would be unsurvivable unless the shooter was extremely lucky: too may opponents to be realistic. The bad guys would probably win against even the best shooters, although many of them would be thoroughly dead first.
[User Picture]
From:phanatic
Date: - 0000
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The Brady Law, as well as the assault weapon ban, are examples of the Politicians' Syllogism in action:

1. Something needs to be done.
2. [This] is something.
3. Therefore, [this] must be done.

I can't recall anyone ever committing a crime in this country by bayoneting someone. And yet, we have a law that says that if a particular firearm has a bayonet lug, it's subject to further restriction than guns that have no such accessory.

Gun control laws aren't, and have never been, based upon a rational examination of facts.
[User Picture]
From:bronxelf_ag001
Date: - 0000
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"It's not THE answer, it's AN answer. And it's the WRONG answer."


-Woody Allen, "Love and Death".

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