Friday, September 28, 2007

Ruger No.1 Rifle in 45-70 Govt.

***Previously Posted on Chuck for...

The Ruger No.1 is a falling block , under-lever, single shot rifle which follows some of the Farquharson design characteristics but contains features never previously found in rifles of this type. The No.1 buttstock is mortised onto the receiver with a bolt passing through the stock into the receiver. The forearm is attached to a heavy steel extension from the receiver. The hammer is concealed and retracted by the first opening motion of the lever and can never strike the firing pin unless the breech block is fully elevated. The swinging transfer block virtually locks the firing pin forward against gas pressure during firing.

At the top rear of the receiver is a sliding ambidextrous safety which can only be moved to safe with the hammer cocked. Loading and unloading can be accomplished in the safe position.

This rifle loads from the breech, or rear of receiver and ejects rearward as well. Fast operation of the lever can throw hot brass onto the shooter, the standard ejector mechanism can be modified easily to only partially eject cartridges. Directions are included in the manual.

This is one of the strongest actions available in a rifle and has been known to handle outrageous
pressures. This is not a recommended policy. Within the safe operating pressures high performance loads can be accomplished, loading data for 400gr bullets show muzzle
velocities of 2100fps and 500 gr bullets at 1900 fps.

The 45-70 Government cartridge is the oldest rifle cartridge chambered in modern firearms. It is a straight taper rimmed cartridge and the bullet, although a 45 is a .458 diameter bullet vs the modern 45 Colt which is .451-.452. Commonly available bullets are 250, 300, 350,
400, and 500 grain. For comparison's sake typical 30-06 rounds are 150, 180, 200, and 220 grain. Loading data for the Ruger No.1 show muzzle velocities of 2100fps with 400 gr and 1900 with
500 gr. A typical 30-06 muzzle velocity is 2600 fps. This is an extremely powerful rifle and is capable of hunting anything that walks the earth. The cartridge and un-cased bullet shown are .458 Speer Jacketed Flat Nose 400 grain which were loaded for Model 1895 Marlin.

With all that power comes significant recoil. This gun will hit the shooter quite hard and with big game loads is not for the faint of heart or small of stature.

Due to the relatively low speed of the rounds serious drop occurs over distance so the shooter must allow for an occurrence that is not common in smaller high velocity rounds. It is of very real importance to remember that rounds suitable for the Ruger No.1 are not suitable for other rifles chambered in 45-70 and serious care must be taken with vintage arms to not use rounds that even a Model 1895 Marlin is capable of using, that rifle is considerably stronger than the old Springfields.

From my first exposure to the 45-70 Govt, which was a Marlin Model 1895, I have wanted a Ruger No. 1 in 45-70. Today it arrived, the rifle you are seeing is unfired and anticipation is killing me - it is also not nice out today, mixed snow, rain and wind.



This thing kicks like a mule, it is a very light rifle and 400 gr bullets at 1900fps (57 gr IMR 4895) are in the painful range. It is a lovely piece and demonstrates good repeatability at 100yds, grouping is tight considering the recoil aversion I experienced after about 10 rounds. Shooting from a prone position with heavy loads is asking to get hurt. Although the rifle came with nice scope rings, they will not get used and the folding leaf sight will be replaced when I find a better peep that will fit well.

Monday, September 17, 2007

Menacing in Medford

By now you have probably heard of the teacher in Medford, Oregon who has come afoul of her district's policies by arguing for the right to bring a firearm to campus. The case seems tailor-made to be a precedent setting case on several fronts, and as such has gotten attention from both pro- and anti-gun advocates.

Mercifully the facts in this case are pretty straight-forward and, apparently, not in dispute:

* The teacher in question has suffered long-term abuse from her spouse who has attacked her and threatened to kill her.
* The teacher has taken steps to protect herself by buying a handgun, learning how to use it, and getting a concealed permit to carry it.
* Her husband has a history of violence and lost his own concealed carry permit for menacing someone else.
* The teacher has asked for permission from the district to carry her firearm on school campuses, and in fact had an article in the September 16, 2007 Oregonian titled "A Loaded Question."

After the facts though, the situation gets muddy, and I haven't heard much explanation for the rest of the story. For instance, before ever asking for permission to bring her firearm to school, the teacher was summoned to her principal's office where she was confronted by her principal and a police officer and told if she had a firearm on her she would be fired. I have to wonder about this--how did the principal find out that she had a concealed carry permit? Did the police tell him on their own? This seems rather bizarre, and probably illegal.

At the case stands at the moment, the woman is being helped with her legal bills by The Oregon Firearms Federation (see "OFEF TO CHALLENGE ILLEGAL SCHOOL POLICY") The Sunday Oregonian carried Op-Ed pieces by Lars Larson (in favor of the teacher) and State Senator Ginny Burdick (D) (guess her position) who, as always, is using this opportunity to pursue her personal obsession in banning legally carried firearms from all school buildings (and, as always, helping Republicans raise money by invoking her name.)

To my mind, the real issue here is not about guns in schools. Schools are public buildings and, as Larson pointed out in his Op-Ed, concealed permit carriers are allowed by Oregon law to take their weapons into almost all public buildings, including schools. Further, there hasn't been a single instance of a visitor to a school endangering students because he or she has a concealed handgun. Ginny Burdick's regular protests against responsible gun-owners are the classic "solution in search of a problem."

The real problem is the husband--he created this mess and he should be the one penalized for it. The Medford school district is in a no-win situation driven by selective enforcement of the law. As soon as they learned the teacher had been threatened by her husband and had taken out a restraining order against him, the teacher should have been transferred to an administrative position regardless of whether she took out a permit or not. To not have done so seems to have already opened the district up to extensive liabilities if any students are injured as a result of the teacher's husband's action. This may seem unfair to the teacher and to the district, but it seems to be the best solution for the children in any such case.

As for the husband, he has assaulted his wife, threatened her life and threatened at least one other person with a firearm in the last year. Because his wife works at a school, he is a threat to the community's children and should be dealt with accordingly by the full force of the law. For starters, he should be charged with assault. He also needs an ankle-bracelet to track his movements. He should also be subject to a civil suit by his wife for denying her an income and by the district for denying them the use of an employee. If we need any new legislation, it would be to clarify that perpetrators of violence or threats of violence should be financially responsible for the results of their actions.

And finally, while I really don't think this case is about the broader question of whether guns should be allowed on school campuses, IT IS ABOUT the rights of employers to prohibit their employees from bringing guns to work. This raises other questions of fault and liability. Most, I would venture to see nearly all, employers have policies against employees bringing firearms to work. In some cases, these bans may have led to the deaths of employees who were unable to protect themselves against outraged spouses or angry co-workers (see the April archives for this blogsite for an example.)

The question is whether employers of any kind, not just schools, should continue to have the right to deny employees with valid concealed carry permits from carrying those firearms on the job. That is really the broader question of what this case is about: not whether the PUBLIC should be allowed to carry guns on campus (those with permits should) but whether EMPLOYEES at public or private institutions should be prohibited from bringing firearms into the workplace.

In the case of the Medford teacher, I think the solution that follows the law and common sense would be (1) lock up the husband and charge him in civil court as well as criminal court for the cost to the teacher and to the district his stupid behavior has cost them, (2) move the teacher to a job where she is not around children until the eminent threat of violence is gone. I don't personally see a problem with trained, emotionally stable people carrying guns where ever and whenever they please. But I do see a problem with having a teacher who is currently the target of a violent, dangerous stalker teaching children. I don't mind if teachers carry guns to school, but a teacher who rightfully fears she has become a bullet magnet shouldn't be in the classroom and I can't think of a parent I know who wouldn't agree with that.

Send any bills to the husband....when he gets out on parole.