Only A Gun Can Protect You From The Impending Collapse.

              Several weeks ago, I posted a column about a GOP lawmaker in Michigan who walked into a legislative session carrying an AR-15 on his back and a Glock in his waist. He wanted to let everyone know that he was an ardent supporter of 2nd-Amendment ‘rights.’ This idiot then went home, left the guns out on the kitchen table and drove off to go somewhere else. Whereupon someone broke into his home and swiped the guns. The cops believed that the burglary occurred because the bad guy had gone to the politician’s Facebook page and seen this idiot walking through the State House toting his guns.

              I thought this dope in Michigan had committed the stupidest bit of behavior by any pro-gun politician this year, but I warned my readers that there would no doubt be even dumber examples coming right along. And yesterday what I predicted turned out to be true, thanks to a state legislator in Georgia named Matt Gurtler, who now holds the title of dumbest pro-gun politician of the year. Now remember, my award cuts both ways and I have already given out a ‘dumb’ award to a state rep in Massachusetts who is vociferously anti-gun. But let’s get back to the idiot from the Peach State.

              Gurtler has decided that the shutdown of public offices that process concealed-carry licenses makes residents of those jurisdictions more vulnerable to the COVID-19 virus than if they were to stand in line waiting for their CCW applications to be processed and approved. After all, how can you compare the threat of the ‘Chinese flu’ to the threat of not being able to protect your family and your home?

              So, this moron is proposing that the Governor use his emergency powers to override the State Constitution and allow residents to walk around with a concealed weapon whether they have been granted a CCW license or not. He puts it this way: “We need to suspend enforcement especially during the state of emergency, when so many individuals need to be able to defend themselves and their families and their loved ones and their property.”

              Now I’m going to pretend that my name is Michel Foucault because I want to engage in a brief effort to deconstruct what Gurtler says. Note that he believes not just in the idea of armed, self-defense, but he wants to extend this belief to include the ability of anyone to walk around in the street with a gun. Not just in the street, but maybe to the supermarket, maybe to the liquor store; in other words, to any location that is still providing an essential service or selling products which everyone still needs.

              The whole point of the 2008 Supreme Court decision on the 2nd Amendment is that the majority opinion clearly states that every law-abiding person living in America has Constitutional protection for keeping a loaded, unlocked handgun in their home for personal defense. In Georgia, this decision would apply to everyone who legally owns a gun, or at least a handgun.

              But for reasons that can only be explained in terms of where Gurtler’s IQ lands him on the bell curve, he believes that folks can only protect themselves, their families and their property if they can walk around with a gun. Which, by the way, happens to be an idea that Gun-nut Nation has been pushing for years.

              Georgia and other states have seen a spike in gun sales over the last few weeks. According to the manager of a Florida shop, “Our sales are up 80 percent, with a huge increase in first-time buyers who are worried about martial law, economic collapse, unemployment, shortages, delinquents roaming the streets.”

              This comment takes me back to a wonderful movie, War of the Worlds, which I saw when it was released in 1953, then Spielberg redid it in 2005. Is there the slightest chance that the guy knocking on my front door is anyone other than the kid delivering my pizza with anchovies and extra cheese?

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Will COVID-19 Kill The NRA? Maybe.

So here I was, getting’ all ready to drive down to Nashville next month for the NRA show, and America’s ‘first civil rights organization’ cancels the show.  I went to my first NRA jamboree in 1980 – it was held (believe it or not) in Philadelphia and a Presidential candidate named Ronald Reagan showed up to give a speech. I don’t remember anyone actually walking away from the exhibition area to listen to the speech. After all, how can you compare the joys of eating a nice, greasy corn dog to some political pandering about a ‘welfare queen?’

That was then – this is now. What I find so impressive and even somewhat quaint about the NRA show is how little things change from year to year. The guns are the same, the appeals to liberty, freedom and all the other patriotic co-branding is the same, the food is the same (nothing that could remotely be considered ‘health food’ is sold at the show) and the t-shirts are the same.

Most of all, the people are the same, and if there is one concession I would love to have at an NRA show, it’s the renting of those little, electric carts which allow people to ride around who otherwise can’t walk. Oh, you say, it’s too bad that so many gun owners have been crippled by some kind of accident or disease. Wrong. They can’t walk because they are too fat. You’ll never see so many huge people in one public space at the same time.

Thanks to the ‘Chinese’ virus (Trump’s use of that word is the single, most disgusting thing that any American President has ever said) I’ll have to wait until 2021 to visit with all my friends at the NRA. But my visit to next year’s show assumes there will be a show. And the way things are going for the organization of which I happen to be a Hall of Fame, Defender of Freedom, Benefactor Member, I’m not sure there will be a 2021 show that I can attend.

I was even hoping to wear the NRA Patriot’s Medal I received after I sent Wayne-o some extra cash. But from reports that have recently surfaced in the media about all kinds of cash-flow problems in the Fairfax home office, even the organization’s top leadership is feeling the crunch. Staff have been laid off, some temporarily, some permanently. Local meetings and get-togethers have been cancelled as well. Until last week, you couldn’t go to a gun show anywhere in the United States without seeing a big Welcome! Banner from the NRA. Now there are no gun shows.

What caught my eye in the NRA’s shut-down announcement, however, was not the fact that their remaining staff is going to be working from home. Rather, it was a comment in Wayne-o’s letter sent to the entire organization which told employees to “contact any germane state or federal agency to determine eligibility for any additional aid.”

Hey, wait a minute! Just wait one gol dern minute! I thought the only people who ever go to the government for ‘aid’ are the welfare cheats, the illegals scamming the food stamp system, all those good-for-nothings who steal hard-earned money grabbed by the government from honest, decent, law-abiding folks like you and me. The NRA is now saying that the same government whose jack-booted thugs assaulted legal gun owners is the same government that can be trusted to hand out financial aid? What?

If the Covid-19 virus had stayed in China like it was supposed to, the NRA would have held its annual meeting in Nashville and welcomed another visit by our ‘wartime President’ who would have reminded his adoring audience that he could always be counted on to defend their 2nd-Amendment ‘rights.’ He would have trashed all those ‘Socialists’ on the other side, probably thrown in a few curse words as well, and then run off to hold one of his Nuremberg rallies in another friendly, red-blooded state.

No wonder Trump is considering lifting the ban on stay-at-home orders. He’s the last person who ever stays home.

Want To Protect Yourself From COVID-19? Buy A Gun.

              I knew that as soon as the media got tired of running stories about how many people were infected with COVID-19 (a.k.a, the ‘Chinese flu’) they would start telling us about all the people flocking into gun shops to stock up on ammo and guns. Here’s a headline from the South Bend Tribune: “Guns and ammunition become high-demand items in South Bend area.”

The story went on to say that there was a sign in the window of a local gun ship which said that only eight customers would be allowed into the shop at the same time.

              Now for those of you who, as a general rule, don’t frequent gun shops, the fact is that most gun shops don’t have enough floor space to accommodate more than eight customers at any one time. Gun shops aren’t Kroger Supermarkets – they are small, privately-owned affairs, often sharing the sales area with someone selling video games, plumbing supplies or other consumer junk. Many gun shops also happen to be pawn shops, where the gun inventory shares shelf space with so-called designed jewelry and beat-up guitars.

              And let’s not forget that you just can’t walk into Jerry’s Gun-o-Rama, plunk down your cash and walk off with a Glock. There’s a little something called the background check, which can also take up some time. The media has been saying that FBI-NICS checks are soaring thanks to the increased demand for guns. In fact, the background checks for handguns and long guns was 1.1 million in February; in February a year ago it was 950,000. That’s an increase for sure, but it’s not about to wipe the shelves clean. When the bell rang on Friday afternoon, Smith & Wesson stock had closed down at $7.81. The day before it opened at $8.39. 

              I’m not saying there isn’t panic buying of guns when people are scared. And by next week I can guarantee you that the gun-control group like Everytown and Brady will send me emails telling me that now, as never before, they need as much money as possible to confront this new and dire threat. After all, the more guns people buy, the more guns that end up in the ‘wrong hands.’ And the more people walking around with guns in their ‘wrong’ hands, the more people who will get shot. The argument about guns and security cuts both ways.

              Having operated a gun shop before, during and after 9-11, I know a little something about how and why people buy guns during a period of intense and widespread fear. I also know something about how and why people buy guns when things are running along in a normal way. So you’ll have to excuse me if I don’t jump on either side of the Zombie Apocalypse bandwagon right now.

              In my state, Massachusetts, February saw 8,200 FBI-NICS checks. The same month a year ago it was 6,700, an increase of 22%. Not one of the buyers last month was buying his first gun. Why? Because in order to buy or own any gun in Massachusetts, you first need to get a gun license from the cops, a process which right now takes 3 – 4 months. Which means that anyone who walked into a Massachusetts gun shop in February because they needed to protect themselves from the COVID-19 virus, held or applied for a gun license long before anyone knew anything about the COVID-19 virus at all.

              What people who don’t own guns need to understand is that gun nuts really love their guns. And given the slightest excuse for running out and plunking down $500 – $600 to add another banger to their stash, they’ll do it every time. If you think for one second that when we finally get past the current scare that many of those recently-purchased guns won’t come back to the shops where they were bought because the house needs new gutters or maybe the truck needs a new set of tires, think again.

              It may be difficult for gun owners or non-gun owners to understand what I am going to say, but the War of 1812 was the last time Americans had to defend their hearth and home from a serious threat.

Want To Get Serious About Armed Self-Defense?

As my readers know, I’m not enamored of the gun industry’s attempt to convince every American that they should be walking around with a gun. First of all, most of us will never (read: never) need to protect ourselves from all those bad guys out there, because if you can believe the FBI, the number of bad guys floating around keeps going down. The agency just released crime data for 2019 and once again, violent crime isn’t a big deal in the places where most of us live.

The other problem I have with armed, self-defense is that unless you keep yourself in shape and continuously train and retain muscle memory, you’re simply not going to pull out a gun, point it at the threat and stop the man in his tracks in two seconds or less. Which is the amount of time you’ll have to defend yourself if someone decides to come at you to commit bodily harm.

But there are people who really do need an extra measure of protection. There are people whose livelihoods often require that they carry and know how to use a gun. And although I rarely get into product reviews on this website, I’m going to do such a review right now.

There’s a company called Craft Holsters which recently sent me one of their products and asked me if I would try it out and then post a review. And to their credit, they made it clear that I could write a good review or a bad review; this was no Ukraine-type quid pro quo.

So I got the holster the other day and used it with my Glock. I walked around with it and then went down to my range where I ran through the Tueller drill, which means that I reached for the gun, pulled it out of the holster, raised the gun, pointed the gun and got off a double-tap in 2 seconds or less. And by the way, I did the drill 10 times, popped 20 rounds and hit the center-mass target 15 times. Which ain’t so good but ain’t so bad.

This company is making a very good holster. It’s a quality leather, double-stitched and cleanly made. It holds the gun firmly but not too firmly; when you pull the gun up and out there’s no slip but also no rub so it doesn’t hold back. To pull a gun up, point, shoot and hit a target two times in 2 seconds or less, you want to make sure that when you reach down for the gun it’s in the exact same place every time, and when you pull it up the gun comes quick and clean.

This company, Craft Holsters, makes a holster that you should want to own. They come out of Eastern Europe which is increasingly a location for many companies producing products for American shooters – both accessories and guns. And by the way, their prices are right in line.

And I like the detailed instructions for how to break in their leather and keeping your holster clean. Well done Craft Holsters, well done.

Khalil Spencer: Did You Buy A Gun This Week?

Sunday’s Santa Fe New Mexican reported a run on guns and ammo at the Outdoorsman of Santa Fe. Apparently this is not unusual right now and is happening elsewhere in the state, in part due to news that the Albuquerque City Council will vote on a proposed expansion of emergency powers to shutter gun shops. Whether that happens, and whether it is lawful, is beside the point. That, along with all of the other uncertainty and worry going on due to COVID-19 is resulting in a mad buying binge. But we don’t need a buying binge right now. We need a caring binge.

As far as Santa Fe as reported by the Santa Fe New Mexican’s Daniel Chacon:

“That rack is usually full of basic pump-action shotguns — all gone,” salesman Jay Winton said last week as he pointed to an empty rack in the store at DeVargas Center. “People … want to defend their home from the ravening hordes that they’re convinced are coming, so we’re selling lots of ammunition, lots of firearms.”
But at times like these, its perhaps best to remember Franklin Roosevelt’s First Inaugural Address:

“…So, first of all, let me assert my firm belief that the only thing we have to fear is…fear itself — nameless, unreasoning, unjustified terror which paralyzes needed efforts to convert retreat into advance. In every dark hour of our national life a leadership of frankness and of vigor has met with that understanding and support of the people themselves which is essential to victory. And I am convinced that you will again give that support to leadership in these critical days…”
But really. If you bought a gun, or are considering buying one right now, consider the following:

1. The Spanish Flu of 1918 killed more people than World War I and about a half percent of the U.S. population. We persevered.
2. The Great Depression unemployment rate peaked at 25%. We persevered.
3. Do you know how to use that gun in a crisis when a few seconds count? Do you know Jeff Cooper’s Four Rules? Do you know the laws of the use of deadly force? Do you know how to store a firearm safely, esp. if there are kids around? If you are a first time firearm owner, do you know where to sign up for a gun safety class before you put a round in the chamber?  If you are unsure of any of these questions, lock that gun up until you can pass my quiz with an “A”. You are more of a hazard to yourself and others than a resource.
“Bullets don’t have a reverse gear”  -Me
We cannot shoot a virus. We can only shoot each other and quite possibly, live the rest of our lives  with the knowlege of having made a fatal mistake. We need to help each other and find common cause in working through this pandemic rather than fearfully arming up against hypothetical “ravening hordes” or collapses of civilization that will only happen if we as a people affirmatively make it happen.

So if you have a few  hundred bucks to burn, perhaps its a better idea to donate it to the Red Cross, the food bankSanta Fe Community Fund, or some organization trying to raise funds for COVID-19 test kits or ventilators. Yesterday we bought water containers and distilled/deionized water and delivered same to a close and elderly friend with serious medical conditions who has some medical contraption that needs DI water to function. She is, as she said to us, “one of the people for whom a COVID diagnosis would likely be a death sentence”.

Stop and think. Look around you. As FDR so beautifully said, we have nothing to fear…but fear itself.

Disclaimer: I am on the Board of Directors of the Los Alamos Sportsman’s Club. These are not club views or Board views but my views alone.

Let’s Hope That Doctors Do A Better Job Of Dealing With COVID-19 Than They Have Done With Gun Violence.

              In this Plague Year all I can hope is that my friends in the medical community will do a better job of dealing with the current COVID-19 epidemic than they have done with the gun-violence epidemic that was first studied and defined in science-based medical studies published back in 1992 and 1993. I am referring to the studies by our friends Art Kellerman and Fred Rivara who found that access to a gun in the home was the cause of high rates of gun violence defined as fatal injuries, i.e., suicide and homicide.

              The death toll from intentional shootings since that research appeared is edging its way towards the million mark; in other words, somewhere around an average of 36,000 per year, maybe a few more. As of March 15, there have been 62 COVID-19 deaths reported in the United States, with the first fatality being registered as of February 24th. That’s 2 deaths a day, chump change compared to 100 intentional gun deaths that occur over the same period of time.

              How can a medical epidemic go on for at least twenty-five years and not only remain out of control but appear to be getting worse over the last several years?  Today the jerk in the White House said he believed we would have the virus contained by Summer at the worst. What do you think would have happened to the Dow Jones if Sleazy Don had gotten up and said that 30,000 people would die from the virus every year until 2045?

              I was hardly surprised when the gun industry reacted so violently to the research published by Kellerman and Rivara; after all, they were basically saying that a legal consumer product was too dangerous to be sold except perhaps under the strictest of conditions. At the very least, their research was an invitation for the government to regulate guns, and if you can show me any industry that wants to be regulated, I’ll show you an industry that doesn’t exist.

              On the other hand, I was not only surprised but indeed am shocked and dismayed at the manner in which the medical community has reacted to the Kellerman-Rivara evidence, both then and now. Because the response of medical organizations to the indisputable fact that access to a gun creates a medical risk which causes between 35,000 and 40,000 fatalities each year, has been to promote a mitigation strategy which doesn’t impact the incidence of the gun-violence epidemic at all.

              This strategy, now referred to as ‘consensus-based,’ says that physicians should tell their gun-owning patients that the risk of firearm ownership can be reduced by locking their guns away or locking them up. But the Kellerman-Rivara research did not (read: not) differentiate risk levels based on secured versus unsecured guns. Thus, the attempt by the medical community to find some middle path between owning versus not owning guns, flies in the face of what the evidence-based research actually shows.

              Not only does the medical community promote a response to the gun-violence epidemic that is contrary to accepted research, they go further and actually promote the spread of this epidemic by donating millions of dollars to the campaigns of Congressional members who describe themselves as being the foremost defenders of the ‘right’ to bear arms.  When I asked a member of the American College of Emergency Physicians why she had never spoken out against the fact that her organization (which gave her an award last year for her efforts to promote gun control) had donated more than $5 million to the campaigns of pro-NRA politicians since the Kellerman-Rivara articles appeared, she said: “Change takes time.”

              How much time do you need?  Twenty-eight years isn’t enough?

              It took me two days to research and write this column. During that time roughly 7 more people have evidently died from COVID-19. Know how many Americans have died from the gun-violence plague during those same two days?  Try two hundred, give or take a few.

Josh Montgomery: Firearms You Should Bring To The Woods.

Landscape, Scenic, Porphyry Mountain

We were designed to thrive in the wilderness. We’ve come a long way from the era of cavemen, moving from pointy sticks to boomsticks. While we enjoy more comfortable lifestyles today, it’s always best to stay as close to nature as possible. Part of our well-designed nature is creating well-designed tools to help us out.

There are a lot of firearms that are useful in different situations, so you need to know what you’re getting yourself into. We’re gonna give a rundown of choices for different purposes.

All Around Survival Gun

The Ar-7 was designed with survival in the wilderness in mind. It was created in 1959 by Eugene Stoner who also designed the legendary AR-15. It was originally created for Air Force pilots who needed a great survival tool in case they ever found themselves stranded in the wild. It’s still used today by bushfire pilots and outdoor enthusiasts.

One of its greatest features is compactness. The rifle breaks down into a few parts. The barrel, firing mechanism, and two magazines are stored in the butt of the rifle. It can be broken down and reassembled with ease. This allows it to be snuggly stored in whatever bag you’re bringing, adding only a few pounds to your pack. If you’ve been on long trips in the wild before, then you know how valuable this can be.

Today, Henry manufactures an updated version of this rifle. It uses .22 ammunition which means its perfect for small game hunting. It’s also robust enough to handle some dirt and moisture.

While the AR-7 is a personal favorite of mine, there are many .22 rifles that will be your best friend in survival situations. The semi-automatic Marlin 10-22 is one of the most popular and wallet friendly models today.

Shotguns

There’s a reason that shotguns are so popular among people living on the frontier. That reason is versatility.

Much of its versatility comes from the different types of shotgun shells on the market. Bird shot can be used for birds and other small animals. Buck shot is great for deer and other larger animals. You can load slugs if you need to shoot at longer ranges. It packs enough power to defend you against bears, wolves, or whatever the woods send your way.

There are different types of shotguns to choose from. The first gun I was given by my father was a Remington 1170. It has beautiful wood furnishing and makes for both nice shooting and a nice art piece. However, I wouldn’t want it in the brush with me. The Mossberg 930 is a great all-around semi-auto shotgun. It comes with synthetic furnishing and a mid-length (22”) barrel. Its tubular magazine, holding up to 9 shells, was a major upgrade involved in my choice of it. Its well roundedness makes it useful for competition, self-defense, and especially the wilderness.

.357s and .44s

Bears, Grizzly, Mother, Cubs, Young

If you’re carrying for safety, you need something big. Many of the most beautiful places in the world are also home to some of the most dangerous animals. Grizzlies, black bears, cougars and more are real threats in many woods. While these are beautiful animals, they can also rip your head off.

You need a caliber as big as them, which is where .44 and .357 revolvers come into play. If there are large animals like grizzly bears where you’re at, you need the .44. If you’ll be somewhere where you’re worried about smaller beasts such as black bears, the .357 may suffice.

When hunting, you generally have time to set up your blinds, stands, equipment and whatever else you need. However, when it comes to defending yourself, you need something that is always at the ready. You won’t have your rifle or shotgun seconds from firing while collecting wood, setting up camp, or sitting by the fire, but you can always have a revolver on your side. You may feel that a handgun is not powerful enough to stop as ferocious an animal as a bear, but they are actually effective roughly 95% of the time.

A side benefit of buying a .357 is that many of them can also shoot .38 caliber rounds. .38 rounds are preferable for target practice and new shooters. Of course, that’s only a benefit if you don’t need the increased firepower of a .44.

Big Bore Rifles

If you want to hunt large game at long distances, big bore rifles are generally a necessity. They pack enough punch to put game down with one well placed shot. They can also be outfitted with scopes and range finders to shoot over incredibly long distances.

Like shotguns, lever action 30/30s are a staple of the American woodsman’s arsenal. Marlin and Henry make versions that call back to the American west. Bolt action rifles tend to be preferred for accuracy over the longest of distances. The exact caliber you need will depend on what you’re hunting and your personal preferences.

Hopefully you have an idea of what you need now. As a closing note, make sure your weapon of choice is reliable. You don’t want to be stuck in the wilds with a jammed or broken-down gun. Review the area you’ll be in and what you’ll be doing, and pick firearms appropriate for the situation.

Want To Protect Yourself In The Jungle? Carry A Gun.

Yesterday I got my Shooting Times which contained the single, dumbest ad for a gun that I have ever seen in that magazine which I have been reading now for more than forty years. The ad promotes a new self-defense pistol made by Springfield Armory, a 9mm thing called the Hellcat.  The pic is above.

The text of the ad begins with: “It’s a jungle out there.”  Now take a look at the jungle surrounding the kid who happens to be walking away from his broken-down car.  That’s some jungle. It looks much more like a road running through Nebraska or North Dakota.  But of course, the kid better keep that little pistol in his pocket because you never know whether a lion or tiger will jump out of the grass and eat him alive. Or maybe try to steal his car.

 Incidentally, in his left hand, he’s carrying his trusty water bottle. You don’t expect him to go trekking off through the jungle without being able to keep himself hydrated, right? That would never do. It’s a jungle out there.

The jungle is so dangerous that the FBI has just reported that violent crime in 2019 has declined 3% from the previous year.  In 1994, the violent crime rate was 708.94.  In 2018, it was 368.9.  That’s quite a jungle out there.

Leaving aside the fact that the attempt by the gun industry to talk about crime rates in totally unreal terms is both stupid and wrong, the ad actually has an even more bizarre theme; namely, the idea that a country road can be used to somehow symbolize a jungle environment.

Want to see what most Americans consider to be the ‘jungle?’ Try this one:

A black and white photo of a store

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Now that’s a jungle, okay? But even the gun business has now become politically correct. You can’t talk about the urban jungle the way we used to talk about the urban jungle because then you have to say or at least hint at the issue of race. And that’s a no-no except when Donald Trump stands up at a campaign rally and shouts, “Where’s my Negro?”

You would think that if the gun business wanted to be taken seriously, they would do an ad showing some Black guy walking down an inner-city street. But that wouldn’t work, not only in terms of how racist the ad would be, but because in most cities the cops don’t give concealed-carry permits to Black residents anyway.  So, what’s the point?

The point is that this Springfield Arsenal ad is so far away from any kind of reality that it should be used by my Gun-control Nation friends to point out the degree to which the manufacture and sales of self-defense weapons has nothing to do with protecting yourself at all. The messaging is about as reality-based as the Growing Up Gotti TV show had anything to do with how those snot-nosed kids were being raised.

On the other hand, from the point of view of reducing gun violence, maybe the Hellcat ad is a blessing in disguise. Because if the owners of Springfield Arsenal have to go to such ridiculous lengths to justify the development of their products, then maybe the entire argument about the need for self-defense is beginning to finally become undone.

Back in 2010, the percentage of Americans favoring stricter gun control as opposed to not changing the laws was roughly the same, with both sides running around 45 percent. As year, for every American who thinks that we have enough gun control, there are two Americans who believe that gun laws should be tightened up. If this trend continues and if the blue team wins back the White House in November, what else can the gun business do except run crazy ads making people believe that crime is a bigger threat than COVID-19?

I’m not going to the gun show this weekend because being around lots of older adults may represent a serious health risk.  Stay safe everyone!

Glen Artis: Tips and Tricks for Reloaders.

We all love going to the range to practice our aim or to simply keep our trigger fingers busy. Problem is ammo is expensive, and you need lots of it if you frequent the range. So how do you ensure you have a constant supply of ammunition at the lowest cost possible?

Purchasing a progressive reloading press is the best way to do it. With a progressive reloading press, you will need to stock on primers, powder, and bullets. More importantly, though, is the reloading press you decide to splash money on.

While there are several different types of reloading presses, the progressive reloading press is the best. These types of presses are capable of producing 400 rounds per hour. Also, they offer precision and efficiency that is hard to come by with other types of reloading presses. 

That being said, here are five useful tips on how to pick out the best progressive reloading press in a saturated market. 

Ease of use

There are three main types of reloading presses, single-stage, turret, and progressive reloading presses. Of the three progressive reloading presses are the most complex. As such, they tend to be a handful for beginners.

Nevertheless, some of the progressive reloading presses available today are easier to use and assemble than others. Depending on your level of experience, it may help to invest in a press that is a bit easier to use than most.

Question is, how do you know a reloading press will be easy to use or assemble? The general rule of thumb is that presses with fewer moving parts are easier to use.

The production rate

The production rate or reloading rate is the number of rounds a press can produce within a given time, typically in an hour. This factor is dependent on several things key among them, the automatic indexing feature.

So should you go for a reloading press with an automatic indexing feature or one without? Typically, those with automatic indexing have a higher production rate. However, this is not necessarily a good thing.

To understand why we need to delve a little bit into machines with automatic indexing. Presses with this feature will automatically size, prime, operate powder measure, and seat a bullet. Those that lack this feature have to be manually operated.

A manual press gives you more freedom to scrutinize the entire process, as nothing happens without your contribution. This is beneficial for beginners, but if you have experience with progressive reloading press, the automatic indexing feature will be a big plus.

Caliber changing system

When you have different caliber bullets to reload, you will need to make changes to your reloading press. This is where the caliber changing system comes in. This is another aspect that affects a reloader’s production rate.

If you frequent the range and want to produce a large amount of rounds, consider a reloading press with a caliber changing system.

Number of stations

Progressive reloading presses feature different numbers of stations, with each station having a unique function. On average progressive reloading presses can have anywhere between 3 and 8 stations.

The more the number of stations, the more simultaneous tasks can be performed. This translates to a higher production rate. However, most people can be sufficiently served by a press with 4 to 5 stations.

With 4 to 5 stations, you will be able to produce a substantial amount of either pistol or rifle ammunition. It is worth noting that presses with more stations cost more. Thus you may have to cough up to $1000 for a press with eight stations.

Price

Progressive reloading presses cost between $300 and $1000. For most people, a $300 reloading press is sufficient. A pricier model will have extra features that allow you to do more. However, some of the features found on pricier models may not be practical to you. 

This is especially if you are generally inexperienced when it comes to using progressive reloading presses.

Conclusion

There are many different kinds of progressive reloading presses on the market, each with its pros and cons. When it comes down to it, the best progressive reloading press is the one that best suits you. If you are new to these types of presses, some of the more complex and pricier models may not be ideal for you.