Author Archive

A gray-haired man in a blue and black plaid jacket with red ear protection fires a Smith and Wesson Miliary and Police .38 at a target with a wooded area behind him.

Golden Guns for Everyone: The Orthopedic Winners

I have been fascinated by the great buildings of the world all my life and always find architecture interesting. While Notre Dame and the Eiffel Tower are monumental achievements, the Pirate’s House in Savannah, Ga., is another structure I find completely interesting. And Joyce and I love the mile-high bridge at Grandfather Mountain.

The SIG P226 Navy Model

Range Report: The Navy Model P226, MK 25

As a writer, I do my dead-level best to test and evaluate every firearm that crosses my desk in a professional manner, including extensive range testing. Many of the commercial firearms are new and unproven, even when based on a proven handgun design. Every modification and new idiom must be proofed. Occasionally, I encounter a firearm that is proven more so than the rest. And then, there are the legends. For legends, there is little I may do to add or detract from the firearm’s reputation with my own test program. That is the case with the Sig Sauer P226 MK 25 or Navy Model.

Silver Cold Steel Code 4 knife with blade open on a gray stone background.

The Cold Steel Code 4

For more years than I care to remember, I have been a fan of Cold Steel knives. The Cold Steel knife company offers good quality, sharp edges and positive function. During my time in police service, my impression was that I saw more Cold Steel knives used by peace officers than anything else. The reasons are quality and affordability.

Black Rock Island compact 1911 on a gray-and-white woven background, barrel pointed to the right.

Range Report — Rock Island Compact 1911

Is there a best personal defense handgun? I doubt it; the competition is fierce, and many handguns have their good points. We also have personal needs and personal worst-case scenarios. As long as the handgun is a quality design, well executed with good reliability and is accurate and powerful enough for the task, the rest is up to you. My personal favorite carry gun is the 1911 single-action self-loader in .45 ACP. There are many variants, and while some are ironmongery, many are well made of good material.

Blue-toned box of Liberty 45 Acp + P ammunition with cartridges toward the front of the picture on a plank of wood.

Liberty Ammunition Range Report

When it comes to personal defense ammunition, the first criterion to meet is reliability. This criterion is closely followed by accuracy, clean burning and a good primer seal. That is the bottom line. No ballistic advantage is worth pursuing if the ammunition is not completely reliable.

White-haired man in blue jacket with white ear protection points the Ruger LCR at a green target set against a backdrop of leafless trees.

The Ruger LCR — The Most Advanced Revolver in the World

Revolver history is interesting. I am leading up to something because the revolver on my desk as I write this has me going back over everything I have learned about the revolver.

A Bit of Revolver History

The revolver is older than commonly believed. Double-barrel and combination barrels were common during the flintlock era, although they are not true repeaters. Revolvers with multiple chambers were not rare—they were expensive. The revolving-cylinder handgun dates back to at least 1540, so it was a case of the technology of the day not catching up with the thinking man’s dreams.

Gray haired man in green shirt with red ear protection and safety glasses shoots a Sig 4-inch 1911, muzzle pointed to the right, against a wooded background.

SIG 1911 Carry Stainless

There are two great service-grade types in the 1911 handgun—stainless steel handguns are good, serviceable pistols for hard use and commander-size handguns are a good choice for concealed carry. After all, if there were a legitimate criticism of the 1911 pistol, it would be size and weight. The 1911 is thin and heavy. Ergonomics are excellent and beyond question. The attributes of the type make modification, and even redesign, desirable as long as you keep the advantages.

Young woman in white t-shirt and pink ear protection shooting a black AR-15 with CMMG .22 caliber conversion on a green grassy area with wooded area in the background.

.22 Conversions — Good Practice or Making Brass?

One of my associates recently showed off his brand new AR 15 type rifle at the firing range. The difference between that rifle and the others on the range —it was chambered for the .22 Long Rifle cartridge. He bragged about how the stock, sights and firing mechanism mimicked his .223 so closely that he was able to practice tactical rifle shooting for a pittance. I nodded my head, put the eyes and ears on and began firing my Daniel Defense .223 caliber rifle. My cohort busily ripped through a brick of .22-caliber ammunition.