VOLUME 52-----------OCTOBER 2006
SHOOTIN', HUNTIN', AND RELOADIN'
WITH THE OL' MISSOURI HILLBILLY
Well, I'm finally getting an October newsletter posted. We just returned from a trip back to Missouri and Iowa visiting our mothers, relatives, and friends. All told, we added over 4000 miles to the odometer on the Buick.
We found almost everyone doing OK back there in the hills. Ann's Mom had taken a fall a few days before we arrived, and later found that there was a broken bone in her foot. (I think they said "fifth metatarsal") While there we took her to a bone specialist in Des Moines, Iowa resulting in a removable "boot cast" to hold everything in place when moving about. She was pretty much "on the mend" when we started back home.
My brother Ed was finishing with his hay crop and beginning preparations for their annual mid November rifle deer season opener. Ed's boys, and some friends will again move into the "hunting cabin" located on the "back forty" of their 500 acre spread.
I think I've mentioned before that Ed's property is located in some of the best whitetail deer country in northwest Missouri. That is destined to only get better, as several thousand acres of neighboring land is now under the ownership of a family who is practicing "quality deer management" principles, that will remove excess does and allow bucks to reach full maturity before being harvested.
I'm still writing for Outlook Magazine. The latest edition, available for download at www.spokaneoutlook.com has an article about premium versus traditional "cup and core" bullets that you might find of interest. Just click on the link that says "latest edition" on the magazine's website.
All the Outlook Staff Writers now have an email address on the Outlook server. Mine is: firstname.lastname@example.org Drop me a line now and then and tell me what you like, or don't like about my writing.
My gunsmithing projects on the Winchester Model 1895 are nearly completed. The drilling, tapping, and installation of the receiver sight went as planned and turned out very well. The open sight has been removed from the barrel and will soon have a dovetail blank from Brownell's in the open dovetail slot. The rifle is now sighted in with the new sight and prints "minute of deer" from the 100 yard bench.
I now have a better appreciation of the 1895 owner's manual's admonition not to disassemble this rifle. If you refer to the picture in last month's newsletter showing the 1895 parts scattered about the bench in preparation for the sight project, you can see that it took some doing to get everything back together and working properly.
The addition of the LimbSaver recoil pad was not quite as successful. I purchased a fixture that is used to hold a "grind to fit" recoil pad at the proper angles to grind with a belt or disc sander. Using the jig resulted in a learning experience. Getting the toe and heel angles right turned out to be a little more challenging than the catalog advertisement would lead one to believe!
After figuring out that operation, I found that I really needed the small, rather than the medium sized grind to fit pad. I failed to take into account that the toe angle makes the butt plate area smaller when it is shortened to accommodate the thickness of the pad. When the grinding was completed the walls between the sides of the pad and its internal air chambers were showing signs of being too thin.
The pad is certainly serviceable and tames the recoil as compared to the factory's steel butt plate, but I'm not satisfied with the fit and finish of the installation. When deer season is over I plan to buy the smaller pad, and redo this item.
The following two photos show the current state of these projects.
In addition to the dovetail blank mentioned above, I plan to order a barrel band sling swivel kit to put the final touch on the 1895.
On September 13th, we had some excitement here at the ranch. I was in the shop when I heard Ann yell at me. As I walked toward the house she pointed toward the shooting range and stage whispered, "It's a cat!" There, sitting not far from the range backstop, was a full grown bobcat!
When I got in the house, Ann asked, "Is the season open?"
To which I replied, "Hell, I don't know!"
This was followed by a mad scramble which included Ann talking on the phone to Jennifer, me looking in the hunting regs to find that the bobcat season was indeed open, me unlocking the safe to retrieve the .25-06, me digging through a cabinet for ammunition, Ann describing all this to Jennifer on the phone, the cat walking calmly into the brush and trees, and me heading out in hot pursuit!
At the first bend in the trail through the woods south of the house, I could see the cat sitting in the pathway at about 50 yards, staring into the brush. Perfect shot except for one small problem: Neighbor Larry's house is directly in the line of fire about 300 yards down range.
I quickly backed away and made a big circle through the woods to approach from another direction. As I again neared the spot where the cat was last seen, I glanced to my right. There sat mister cat, looking at me from about 30 yards away. One shot put him down with hardly a twitch.
As I approached to make sure the cat was dead, I noticed a ball of fur under a front leg. It was a half grown snowshoe hare, so recently caught it was still breathing! Don't believe me, right? Look closely at the following pictures.
The cat is now in the hands of taxidermist Jim Gintz near Colville, WA for a full body mount that will include the rabbit in the scene.
This month's hillbilly wisdom comes from another of those internet jokes that make the rounds.
A little old Missouri hillbilly lady
answered a knock on the door one day, only to be confronted by a well-dressed
young man carrying a vacuum cleaner.
Well, It's time to shut down here, So . . . .
'Til next time, Keep 'em shootin' straight, shoot 'em often, and above all, BE SAFE!!!!!