Range Review: Sellier and Bellot .32 S&W Long Wadcutters

Cross Posted at Hunter-Trader-Trapper and Greenville Dragnet

Let me begin this review with a word about the supposed dangers of lead which have forced many indoor ranges – including the one I usually use – to ban lead ammunition. There is no legitimate scientific evidence that proves shooting lead ammunition indoors is any more dangerous than driving a car in terms inhaling toxic fumes and there is no evidence that firing lead ammunition is killing shooters in any significant numbers.

I say this because it took me literally two weeks just to find a range that allowed lead ammo and didn’t charge hundreds of dollars to join. I actually had been planning to use a DNR range about an hour away from me but they only allow pistol shooting on Wednesdays and I kept missing my window but luckily I found Dewey’s Pawn which is in fact the best indoor range I have ever been to and the most reasonably priced. And they let me shoot lead.

Which was good because I was just about to call Luckygunner.com and just pay them for the .32 S&W Long they sent me to review because I frankly thought I’d never get this done. I was glad I did get this range trip done though because the results were interesting to say the least.

Let me begin by explaining what I use .32 S&W Long for because I do in fact keep this round stocked for my Charter Arms .327 Patriot. I live in a subdivision that gets a fair share of raccoon and fox traffic and I have a six month old Havanese puppy who (like me) is a night owl. Years of hiking have also given me bad knees so I sometimes use a blackthorn walking stick and how much I need one depends on the weather. Because of all this I often find myself walking a small dog while using a cane at around 3:00am with a snub nose revolver tucked in a robe pocket for protection from foxes, raccoons and whatever else lurks about semi-urban sub-divisions in the wee hours.

I need to be able to draw and fire my piece with one hand which I am man enough to admit I can’t do particularly well with full power .327 loads, especially double action. Reduced recoil loads and .32 H&R Mags are better but I worry about my neighbors and their paper thin sub-division walls. Plus you really don’t need that much “oomph” for a grey fox or one of the mangy South Carolina ‘coons I’ve seen. So once my dog Knuckles started wanting to be out and about around the time things that want to eat him are out and about I started loading my revolver with .32 S&W Longs.

The problem was all my range time with my revolver was with full power .327s and I was having problems finding non-lead .32 S&W Long to fire at the range. But the stars aligned and I was able to try out a box of .32 S&W Long 100gr wadcutters courtesy of Luckygunner.com. The box was marked “1-17-3” which I assume is a manufacture date.

Here’s a picture of my target:

You’ll notice that most of the hits are “keyholed” except two in the head and one off to the side. This is kind of a mystery. I began my range time with two well-aimed single action shots to the head at five yards. These two did not keyhole but when I began firing two or three shot groups in double action the keyholing began. The third round hole to the side was a single action shot I took to see if that had any effect which I was surprised to find it did. Here’s a close up of the head:

I pushed out to ten yards and had some fun firing double action. I guess the keyhole effect could be caused by the low velocity (a smidgen under 600) of this round because after my range trip I took a good look at the revolver and eliminated excess fouling, crown damage and all the other mechanical issues that can cause bullet tumbling. I also took out some old range targets where .327 Magnum rounds were used (American Eagle 100gr) and there were no keyholes. I still have no idea though why firing in single action mode would stop the keyholes.

As you can see above even at 10 yards and keyholing from a two inch barrel the rounds were hitting “minute of fox” when rapid firing using a one handed stance. That was another shock about the ammo. Keyholing or not these wadcutters were keeping up with my (very) meager shooting ability. All the flyers on this target were primarily the result of me not concentrating or taking the time to aim properly. I’m betting accuracy from a gun actually chambered for the round instead of one that just accepts the round would be astounding.

Of course the reason I was half-assing it on the range is that shooting these rounds was too much fun. I bought a 10 shot Uberti Stallion in .22 LR with me to compare recoil. The Uberti is a substantial revolver with a 5 1/2 inch barrel that has good solid heft. The recoil from my snub nose firing Sellier and Bellot .32 S&W Long wadcutters felt exactly the same as firing a Winchester Wildcats through the Uberti. I started just sending my target down the range and emptying my revolver into it as fast as possible because it was so pleasant to shoot. I ended up going through the entire box before I really finished putting the ammo through its paces.

At less than $20 for 50 rounds it hurts the wallet less than most other rounds when you’re having that kind of fun.

So I will buy more, though I’m testing out other brands and bullet shapes first. While I’m comfortable with my ability to gun down a varmint with this round at close range regardless of keyholing I am not comfortable doing so with my dog nearby. From a .327 with a longer barrel results may be different and like I said for some reason shooting single action stops the keyholing but for now I’m scrapping the robe pocket gun strategy and taking my Uberti out for the walks. I’d like something with a bit more power but I’m not willing to sacrifice the safety of my fellow sub-division dwellers.

Except that one moron who feeds the “cute” foxes.

But if you’re in the market for some .32 S&W Long or any ammo Luckygunner.com is the place to get it. They’ve got great prices, great service and a nice wide selection so put in an order before the lousy Democrats make it illegal.

Michigan House Votes to Repeal Right-Infringing Handgun Requirements by 2-1 Margin

Success! Even with attempts by some lawmakers to use the Trayvon Martin case in Florida to pander to anti-gunners in our state, the Michigan House has voted 72-36 in favor of repealing the permit-to-purchase and registration requirements for handguns. Instead, these outdated practices will be replaced by using the FBI’s National Instant Criminal Background Check System which made these requirements obsolete in 1998.

I outlined some of the main changes that will occur in a previous post, but two points of interest are (via NRA-ILA):

  • “Repeal the state requirement to seek police permission to purchase a firearm by traveling to a local police station and obtaining a permit to purchase.
  • Repeal the requirement to register a completely legally purchased and owned firearm by a law-abiding citizen to be registered with the government through the police.”

Now the bill goes to the Senate. Visit the Michigan Senate page to find contact info for your senator to urge the support of HB 5225.

Governments Hoarding Gold in Preparation for Global Collapse

Countries are increasingly using gold for trade rather than dollars, euros or any other currency. Both India and China has recently been trading gold to Iran for oil and various moves away from the old system of trade have been observed world-wide.

Aside from the collapsing value of the dollar and Euro on reason countries are heading into gold is to avoid sanctions by the U.S. and Europe and have money on hand to by arms and supplies for military actions that the West might try to stop. India and China using gold for oil is also a stealth attack on the dollar, increasing both the value of gold and the pressure on the dollar.

Twelve other countries are noticeably increasing gold reserves in a move that is clearly a preparation for eventual global financial turmoil. From Mineweb.com:

According to the latest IMF statistics at least 12 countries are known to have increased their gold reserves in March indicating the continuation of a trend now going back more than two years, and one which has been on its own a substantial supporter of the higher gold prices seen over the period.  Overall Central Banks appear to have purchased no less than 58 tonnes in the month, which could suggest an acceleration in their increases in holdings if buying at this rate continues throughout the year.

While the majority of these countries only raised their reserves by a very small amount, there were indeed some quite significant purchases – notably from Mexico, which increased its holdings by 16.81 tonnes to a total of 122.58 tonnes; Russia with purchases of 16.55 tonnes giving it total reserves now of 895.75 tonnes; Turkey with 11.48 tonnes taking it to 209.6 tonnes in its reserves.  Argentina bought 7 tonnes taking its holdings to 61.74 tonnes, Kazakhstan with 4.3 tonnes – up to 96.16 tonnes and Ukraine with 1.18 tonnes bringing its holding to 29.21 tonnes.  A further half dozen countries raised their holdings by increments of less than a tonne.

This, of course, only shows the figures for those nations which are, one assumes, wholly transparent in reporting their gold holdings.  There have been some quite sharp ‘upwards adjustments’ in the past from some countries which have been less open in their reporting – notably China which is assumed by most observers to be building its gold reserves strongly over the three years since it last announced an upgrade in its holdings.

The continuing upwards trend in Central Bank purchasing is yet another indicator of unease in the sector about the prospects for those currencies – notably the dollar, the euro, the pound sterling and the Japanese yen – which provide the bulk of their monetary reserves.

European Parliament member Nigel Farage has just warned that the politicians there know Europe will collapse but are unable to figure out a way to tell the public:

There are going to be some serious banking collapses and the impact of that on some sovereign states, will be serious.  I’m afraid we’ve gotten to a point where we really can’t stop this now.  We’re beginning to reach a stage where however much false money you create, the problem becomes bigger than the people trying to solve it.  We are very close to that point.

When I talk about the threats and the risk that this thing could wind up in some kind of rebellion, some sort of awful social cataclysm, they (other European politicians) are now very worried indeed.  They will talk to you in private, but in public, nobody dares utter a word.

I think the deterioration, in the last two or three weeks, in the eurozone is very serious indeed.  It’s the bond spreads in Italy and Spain.  It’s the fact that youth unemployment is now over 50% in some of these Mediterranean countries.

It’s riot and disorder on the streets.  And yet a month ago I was here and there was Herman Van Rumpuy telling us, ‘We’ve turned the corner.  Everything is solved.  There are no more problems with the eurozone.’  What a pack of jokers they look like.”

So hoarding gold or other commodities is a good idea for any country and especially any citizen who realizes the government can’t take care of them.

Ruger Stops Taking New Orders Because They Can’t meet Demand

Good news for Ruger stock owners but maybe bad news for America as it implies many are stocking up and ready for civil unrest. I guess the mood of the country is apocalyptic. Here is an excerpt of their press release courtesy The Firearm Blog:

SOUTHPORT, CT –Sturm, Ruger & Company, Inc. (NYSE-RGR), announced today that for the first quarter 2012, the Company has received orders for more than one million units. Therefore, the Company has temporarily suspended the acceptance of new orders.

Chief Executive Officer Michael O. Fifer made the following comments:

• The Company’s Retailer Programs that were offered from January 1, 2012 through February 29, 2012 were very successful and generated significant orders from retailers to independent wholesale distributors for Ruger firearms.

• Year-to-date, the independent wholesale distributors placed orders with the Company for more than one million Ruger firearms.

• Despite the Company’s continuing successful efforts to increase production rates, the incoming order rate exceeds our capacity to rapidly fulfill these orders. Consequently, the Company has temporarily suspended the acceptance of new orders.

• The Company expects to resume the normal acceptance of orders by the end of May 2012.

Rugers are good guns but there are plenty of companies out there that make fine products so don’t wait for them to resume taking orders if you are looking to make purchases. Trouble is brewing.

Review of Selco’s One Year in Hell Course

It is my firm belief that a civil war similar to the one that happened in the former Yugoslavia will happen in the United States within the decade. Similar but not exactly. It is an extremely unpopular and politically incorrect thing to say but political tensions, peak oil, food shortages, economic collapse and a world rapidly racing toward another world war will all conspire to cause civil unrest then open warfare in an increasingly fractured United States. It is hard to imagine how to prepare for such an eventuality when almost all books, websites and television shows geared toward “survival” are completely devoid of grim reality – many so-called preppers seem to look forward to the coming dark ages that will sweep our planet.

That’s why I was excited to see the legendary Selco offering a course of study called One Year in Hell which thoroughly describes his experience in a failed war-torn state and how he survived living in a city under siege by an army bent on mayhem. He deals with the nitty-gritty of day-to-day survival in a real TEOTWAWKI situation with minimal or no preparations in place. Juxtapose this to the post-Apocalypse fantasy stories that are presented as advice that informs so much in the prepper movement. Everything from procuring supplies to the psychological and physical toll of surviving in a TEOWAWKI environment is covered in a series of audio interviews that are as enlightening as they are soul crushingly depressing.

This audio presentation is the heart of the course and it is an innovation that makes absorbing the information much easier. The audio presentation is done in the form of an interview between Selco and a friend rather than a prepared lecture which allows more in-depth analysis as the interviewer stops Selco to ask questions that would perhaps remained unanswered in a more traditional presentation. It also allows you to “take” the course while doing other things – in my case I listened to the audio while starting seeds for my garden and doing other projects around the house.

The audio is broken down into 30 sections covering a wide range of topics. The first few clips will be of especial  interest to American course takers – this is where Selco talks about life and events leading up to the chaos. I was uncomfortable and saddened to see that many of the things he now knows were warning signs of the coming conflict are happening here.

There are also video presentations for subjects that may need visuals to be fully explained. There’s an excellent video of his home fortifications for example that gives you ample information for how a home should be secured against realistic threats. Reading materials are also provided that give even more detail but frankly the audio portions alone are well worth the $29.95 you pay for access and the course is being added to all the time.

I highly recommend this course to everyone. Preppers are not the only people who would benefit, but those interested in politics and history will find this material eminently useful. Academics, especially those in areas that collect oral histories, will want to add this to their collections as it would make a wonderful teaching resource under the right circumstances.

This is the one site I have found online that is actually worth paying for. Join up now.