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HomeHomeDiscussionsDiscussionsFirearms and Sk...Firearms and Sk...Firearms Discussions An InviteFirearms Discussions An Invite
New Post
11/27/2011 10:54 AM

OK, thanks. know your Winchester is a Marlin right? LOL!

New Post
11/27/2011 12:25 PM

Incidently, I just heard a rumour that Cabelas is selling a stainless walnut stock version of the Ruger. I don't have any more information than that.....

Oh, that is my marlin not his winchester.

Co-Owner Hill People Gear "If anything goes wrong it will be a fight to the end, if your training is good enough, survival is there; if not nature claims its foreit." - Dougal Haston
New Post
11/27/2011 3:16 PM

I was thinking about getting a Ruger Scout and if I did I would send it to MPI for a lightweight stock. I like the look of the laminate stock it is just heavy and I think an ambidextrous thumbhole stock would be an awesome fit for it. Have them reinforce an area on the forend to put on a rail for a vertical grip and light. Now were talking!

New Post
1/1/2012 4:04 PM

Adding this to the thread as grist for the mill. Months ago, I decided that my FAL just didn't fit the bill of an all around rifle for three reasons - weight, appearance, accuracy. In keeping with the mantra of having fewer nicer things, I sold the FAL off to finance the full build of my other "battle rifle" - a Mexican Mauser that had been sporterized with a remington barrel and aftermarket stock at some point before I got it. So, my rifle wasn't completely by design, but was a studied and serendipitous evolution into something I'm very pleased with. I'll start with some pictures and then when I get more time, I'll detail some of the things I like about it for its given role and also some of the decisions I made.

We are fortunate in this matter that your conduct will be your marker and, thus, your reputation. The conduct of others on this forum has been, and will continue to be, their marker, and thus, their reputation. In the west, a person invests in one's reputation carefully. - 112Papa
New Post
1/2/2012 9:00 AM

 I have no experience with the scout style scope set up.  How do you feel about it now that you have used it?  Would you go the route you have again, or just buy the Ruger Gunsite Scout?

I am really rethinking all my possessions.  I have way too much stuff, and really plan on paring down over the next year.  It would be very hard to not own a "black" rifle for me.  Makes me consider going the 300 BLK direction.  The places I hunt is fairly brushy, and it would be a rare day to take more than a hundred yard shot.  Where I would be no one would have any real problem with me hunting with an AR.

New Post
1/2/2012 10:56 AM

I still have a 5.56 AR and wouldn't want to be without one, although I'd probably let it go before my Mauser at this point. I think Randy Cain said it best in the class he taught us -- "If I was going to be dropped down in the streets of Mogadishu, I'd want an AR just like the next guy. But if all I had was a bolt action, it wouldn't be too bad". For me, it really comes down to how to get .308 power in a light package. My Mauser is 7.25 # unloaded. That includes the optic and the light. In the west, the range and power of .308 over .223 is worth trying to achieve.

Ok, so bearing in mind that everything is a series of trade-offs, I'll list some of the points of consideration on my Mauser:

  • It is *my* rifle -- I run a 1911 for a pistol, not because it is the absolute most sensible choice, but because it is important to me that my weapons be personal choices, extensions of my identity. Putting on the anthropologist hat, I'll say that the best parts of material culture are the ones that are both utilitarian and expressive. I guarantee you that there weren't any pleistocene era dudes running around with off the shelf atlatls. Taking time with personal kit has a value that can't be quantified, but is very real. I consider myself a southwesterner as much as anything, and the "buzzard eating the worm" cartouche on the action of my rifle is meaningful to me.
  • Stripper Clips vs. Detachable Box Magazines - I think stripper clips beat out DBMs for speed if the DBMs are only five rounders. As soon as you can get DBMs in 10+ rounds, the speed advantage goes to the DBMs. Even so, stripper clips have some advantages. You can have a lot more ammo in a lot less space and weight in a "ready to go" state with stripper clips than with DBMs. It is easier to stow a stripper clip or two in a Kit Bag than it is to stow a box magazine of any size. Also, I'm mostly a hand carry guy, and it's easier to hand carry a bolt gun that doesn't have a magazine hanging down. I really like my rifle as it is, but if I was starting from a clean slate I might choose from one of the many bolt action rifles now available with 10 round DBMs. Based on what I've seen elsewise, I don't think you can consider a bolt action an all around practical rifle if it doesn't have stripper clip or 10 round DBM loading.
  • Traditional vs. Forward Optic - The only way to run stripper clips is with a forward mounted optic. If you've got DBMs, you can run a traditionally mounted low power variable. A forward mounted optic has a couple of small advantages. First it gives you a weight forward balance point which is steadier off hand even with a short barrel. Second, it is easier to run the bolt quickly and clear malfunctions with the action free of an optic. I don't know that those are huge considerations. If you've got DBMs, I'm not going to argue that you should choose a scout scope over a traditional scope. LOTS more on optics choices in a subsequent post. Suffice it to say that over the years and courses we've been running scout scopes, we haven't felt constrained with them. If you are going to run a scout scope, you want to arrange it such that the rear of the bell is even with the front of the breach. This gives way better field of view and a much quicker "heads up" than being further forward, which is the more traditional scout scope arrangement. Heck, I had a scout scope mounted on my FAL before I got rid of it, and I was running it about 3" in front of the rear ghost ring. Same thing when I've had a scout mounted on a lever action. The newer term "intermediate eye relief" as opposed to the older "extended eye relief" is right on the money.
  • 16" barrel - Because 14" is illegal.  Seriously, you'll lose some velocity going down to 16", but not in any kind of a way that will matter in the real world under 500 yards. Balance that against a rifle that is under a yard long and substantially easier to put on the side of a pack, in a car, or maneuver inside of a house or tent and 16" is a no-brainer.
  • Last shot bolt hold open - I discovered that, just like in an autoloader, last shot BHO is a valuable feature in a bolt action you want to be able to fight with. You lose track of how many rounds you have down range and it's better for the bolt to lock back, ready to accept a stripper clip, than it is to think you have a round chambered when you don't. The BHO follower also keeps the bolt out of the way of the stripper clip. No fiddling around to make sure the bolt is far enough back. I had to source a different follower to get this ability in my rifle.
  • Mauser Action - probably not necessary, but the more I use it, the more obvious it becomes that it is a fighting action. It's heavier and more robust, built to take punishment. When the safety is on, you know it. You can't even see through the iron sights, and the scope view is also heavily impinged until you take it off safe.
  • Stock - I will leave the maker of the stock unnamed because I'm not happy with them. They don't really sell stocks. They sell stock blanks that require a LOT of finishing work to get them fit to the action. If you're not comfortable with laying down a lot of bedding compound to get the stock to even fit the action, you don't want to start here. In all fairness, they also charge stock blank prices. If McMillan guaranteed a drop in fit for Mauser actions (which they don't), that would be the way to go. On the plus side, the stock that I have is nice and light, and I knew that some of the stuff I wanted from it was going to require custom work anyway. I'm not sure who pioneered that picatinny rail bedded into the barrel channel, but it is a very nice way to go. I did that part myself, including rough action fitting. I never want to do that again. Then I handed the thing off to a gunsmith friend who finished off the bedding and also layed a carbon fiber arrow into the forend to stiffen it up. The finished product is very nice. The paint job is mine. Nothing really professional, but I like it.
  • Length of Pull - giving this it's own line item because it is so key. This is a 12.75" length of pull. At that length, I can properly seat the stock in the pocket of my shoulder, and then run the bolt fast and hard without ever disturbing the sight picture. For reference, I'm 5'10" with average arm length for my height. This statement is on the bombastic side, but I'm just going to flat out say that if you can't run the action without disturbing your cheek weld and sight picture, you don't have a fighting rifle.
  • Light - a modern practical use rifle has a light mounted on it. I chose the TLR-3 because it's a pretty good light, nice and light, and blended with the lines of the rifle in a nice low-profile way.
  • Sights - The front sight is a remington ramp with a white bead, and the rear is an XS ghost ring. I like XS ghost rings a lot. The quality is good and the sight picture is quick. For some strange reason, their Mauser rear requires milling out a portion of the receiver. Not cool. Oh well, $80 later and that's something I won't have to worry about again.
  • Butt Cuff - I assume there are plenty of nice butt cuffs on the market, and HPG doesn't need to produce these. Butt cuffs are just so simple that it was easier to make one to my own spec that try to buy one. This one is a tab loop and lacing system which works really well, and there is 1/4" foam underneath the shell loops. This allows me to use static webbing instead of elastic for the shell loops because the foam underneath provides the tension. It also creates a nice stand off from the stock. Because I run stripper clips, my arrangement is one full reload plus a singleton that I use to top off the rifle for 4+1 when I'm in the field.

I think that covers the high points and decisions I made. I'll probably do another post addressing a bigger picture view of why this makes a good all around rifle versus some of the alternatives.

We are fortunate in this matter that your conduct will be your marker and, thus, your reputation. The conduct of others on this forum has been, and will continue to be, their marker, and thus, their reputation. In the west, a person invests in one's reputation carefully. - 112Papa
New Post
1/2/2012 11:12 AM

Scot did a good job of addressing the parameters of an "all around" rifle early on in this thread. As I've said before, there is a strong argument to be made for a 6.8 AR. Here is a telling vignette though - we were down on our uncle's place in Texas hunting last year. I had a bolt gun, Scot had a 6.8 AR. Private gated ranch, and these are people who are very pro-constitution, pro-gun, etc. Despite all of that, there were a few mostly good natured comments about Scot hunting with a "machine gun". To me, that was telling -- extremely friendly crowd, yet the AR was different enough to occasion notice and comment. Also, the 6.8 doesn't pass the "common ammo availability" test, and doesn't pack quite the punch that the 7.62 does when you start looking at elk hunting or grizzly defense. If I could get into a 7.62 autoloader with a traditional stock for 8lbs empty including optic, I might be swayed. Short of that, it's hard to beat a properly set up bolt gun in a military caliber as an all around rifle. Hopefully I've given some good info in the previous post as to what constitutes properly set up.

We are fortunate in this matter that your conduct will be your marker and, thus, your reputation. The conduct of others on this forum has been, and will continue to be, their marker, and thus, their reputation. In the west, a person invests in one's reputation carefully. - 112Papa
New Post
1/2/2012 11:57 AM

I no longer have a 6.8 AR for a couple of simple reasons. One I just could never get over the ammunition situation. I am not a reloaderd for a variety of reasons so I buy all my ammunition. Even with how available 6.8 is on the internet and having a large stock at home I could never quit get over the concern about ammunition. I was constantly on the hunt for ammuntion. It got to be a kind of obsessive thing for me. That really really bugged me. I also just have a lot of faith in the 308 for longer range shooting and bigger game. Faith I just didn't have in the 6.8. I see no reason why the faith shouldn't be there based on reports and the evidence, but I didn't have it when it came down to it so for me it wasn't the right caliber for hunting. 

I am not a fan of the 300 whisper, oops sorry blackout. There are two reasons, first it is a boutique caliber. It is very popular today, but wasn't yesterday (think prior to 2011), but what about tomorrow? There is one company, Cerebus, driving this caliber right now through their various divisions, and other companies are jumping on the blackout due to its current internet popularity. As a result the 6.8 is so yesterday. What happens if the blackout stops being driven by this company? Will it be so yesterday like the 6.8? Before everyone gets all excited yes the 6.8 is alive and well, but the popularity it enjoys is certainly diminished by the blackout and the availability of cheaper fodder for the blackout is already better than the 6.8 and that is why the blackout will win in my opinion. Price and availability of ammunition. It is way to early to tell if the blackout will ever be anything more than a boutique caliber in my opinion. The second thing I don't like is the ballistics of the round. I am not a huge ballistics guy and really don't understand it as much as I should, but let me make a few points.  The blackout has been around for a long time as the 300 whisper, and prior to Cerebus pushing it you hardly ever heard anything about it unless you where really into subsonic/suppressed rifles.  If it is all that and a bag of chips, why is it just now creating a furor? Internet marketing by a powerhouse company?. It was designed from the get go as a subsonic round. For most places the sound barrier is somewhere around 1100 fps as I understand it. That means that typical modern rifle velocities are out so you end up with a fairly heavy bullet with a rainbow trajectory that is easy to suppress. In an effort to make the blackout more economically viable they decided to offer regular velocity ammunition, but you are still dealing with a round that has a fairly short pointblank range.  For my uses I want a flatter trajectory with better range ability. If I was looking for a subsonic platform, or an SBR where velocity is also going to be limited I would look at the 300 blackout, but based on what I have read it is just not really a long range caliber of choice.  Sure you can use it, but you are going to have to really know your range and trajectory and the farther out it gets you are going to get more drop. I think for this use the 6.8 is a better round ballistically, but for whatever reason Cerebus didn't get behind the 6.8 they got behind the 300 whisper.

At this point I am still very much on the hunt for the "right" semi 308, but still haven't found it. I would prefer a traditional style stock to avoid the "machine gun" issues, but I am looking at the various ARs simply because right now they are the lightest weight options out there in that caliber. I am hoping that this will be the year of the lightweight semi-auto 308 at shot, but who could know.

Co-Owner Hill People Gear "If anything goes wrong it will be a fight to the end, if your training is good enough, survival is there; if not nature claims its foreit." - Dougal Haston
New Post
1/2/2012 3:01 PM

 I cannot disagree with anything said. It is sometimes hard for me to separate what I want from what is necessary.  I do appreciate choosing my possesions carefully to reflect my personality.

I love .308.  It is a fantastic round.  There is no way around it.  For me it is more than I have to have, but not too much either.  My local hunting is mostly short range, brushy land, and only for whitetail.  The only thing dangerous around is two legged.  I shoot an AR better than any other rifle.  It might just be the time behind the trigger. I also have no concerns about others opinions in the areas I hunt. Quite frankly I would not be alone in the platform choice. 

A short barreled, bolt .308 is very tempting for me. I could have great faith in one, and this has been on my mind.  I would like to hear more on why you made the decisions you made, and how you would go about it again if you had to start from scratch. I look forward to more info. I am also curious about how comfortable to shoot it is.  I am not terribly recoil or noise sensitive, but I like a gun I enjoy practicing with.  Some have complained that the shorter barrels are loud enough to cause problems.  A comment on this would be appreciated.


New Post
1/2/2012 5:08 PM

I think it all boils down to creating a build with a rifle that you feel comfortable and confident in using, and really that is only obtainable through personal preference and running through different scenarious with rifle in hand.

Regarding the butt cuff- thats a bummer. Butt stock cuffs maybe plentiful, but I certainly havent found any made out of Multicam Cordura with a dedicated stripper clip carry option. It is a unique piece and I believe it has it's niche in the market if it were produced.

Could you eleborate on the forward rail and light mount you are using?

New Post
1/7/2012 10:30 AM

Following up on various questions / comments --

Caliber choice is first. .308 is solidly into elk and bear territory, and is a .mil caliber with surplus still available. Good energy and reasonable trajectory out to 500 yards, even with a 16" barrel. Once you've decided on .308, you've got three choices:

  • Autoloader - they're all too heavy, and most of them are too menacing in appearance. Think about which one you'd want to carry uncased out to your vehicle with your neighbors watching.
  • Browning BLR / Marlin don't remember the model (the one with the rotary magazine). The browning group disperses very quickly after 3 shots, and is not very robust. The marlin might be a good choice, I've just never cottoned to the look of it.
  • Bolt gun - more fighting oriented than a lever, makes the weight grade, makes the appearance grade

With a properly short stock, recoil on the .308 is very manageable. Add a pachmayr decellerator and a synthetic stock, and it really becomes a very manageable piece.

I guess we'll think about it on the butt cuff. Probably would go with individual shell loops, because those will still work with or without stripper clips, and a generic .30 caliber would also work with the ubiquitous 30-30.

On the XS sight - it is contoured on the bottom to match the top of the receiver bridge. However, it is made to a length that you have to cut into the raised part of the bridge with a 3/8 end mill (according to XS tech support) to accomodate it. What this means is that you have to then hand work the cut to match the contour of the rest of the bridge so the sight fits on properly. My gunsmith's ingenious solution was to cut a flat into the bridge and then cut a flat into the bottom front of the sight. That way there was no hand work involved.

We are fortunate in this matter that your conduct will be your marker and, thus, your reputation. The conduct of others on this forum has been, and will continue to be, their marker, and thus, their reputation. In the west, a person invests in one's reputation carefully. - 112Papa
New Post
1/7/2012 10:55 AM

Light mount. Again, this is not my innovation. It is something that Brockman has been doing with his stocks. Not sure if it was Brockman who first came up with it or someone else. Basically, the rail is inset into the bottom of the barrel channel. I went with a standard 4" length picatinnny accessory rail. Might have come from an AR kit, but it just came out of the parts box.

  • First I cut into the bottom of the barrel channel with the router bit on a dremel. Since it was a syn stock, once I got through the shell I was just into foam.
  • I had to drill a custom hole in the pic rail and use one of the existing ones to get the spacing right. The front screw goes into the fiberglass extrusion in the very front of the forend. The back screw goes all the way through the forend (pre-drilled) and extended out underneath the stock. Then I cut that screw and sanded it to match the contour of the outside of the stock. Because of the foam, the rail is not solid mounted at this stage of the game. If you were mounting into a wood or laminate stock, this would be all you would need to do.
  • Next, I laid bedding compound down underneath and around the rail, screwed it into place, put the action and barrel in, and then used a combination of taping and shimming to true the rail to the barrel, both horizontally and vertically.
  • After it all set, I had a pic rail laid into the barrel channel and it was rock solid. When my gunsmith friend did the finish bedding, he added more bedding into the barrel channel above it.

As I mentioned before, you could do this same thing with a laminated stock (like the ruger gs rifle) or a wooden stock without any bedding compound. You'd simply use a router bit, and have to go carefully and slowly with multiple fittings to make sure that the pic rail ended up trued to the barrel.

Since it is a standard pic rail, you can use any weapon light. I went with the streamlight TLR3 for weight and size, but you could use the old surefire G2 in a scope ring trick or any number of other options. Part of my thinking with the overly long pic rail was that I might use a pic rail mounted bipod at some point as well.

We are fortunate in this matter that your conduct will be your marker and, thus, your reputation. The conduct of others on this forum has been, and will continue to be, their marker, and thus, their reputation. In the west, a person invests in one's reputation carefully. - 112Papa
New Post
1/7/2012 11:15 AM

Final part of the question -- if I was starting from scratch today, what would I do?

It would probably be a toss up between doing what I did again and the Ruger GS. Cost wise, the Ruger GS probably ends up being less expensive.

"Doing what I did again" would be starting with a military bolt action like the Mauser or the 03-a3, re-barreling in .308, putting a synthetic stock on and planning on using stripper clips. What you get out of doing that is a svelte rifle because of no box magazine, a true military action, lots of parts availability, and a synthetic stock.

On the side of the Ruger GS, you get something ready to go, and 10 round DBM availability. You'd still have to use a router on the forend to mount the light rail, but that should be very doable with the laminate. Then I'd discard all of that spacer crap on the butt stock (shortest LOP is 12.75" anyway) and have a smith permanently mount a pachmayr decelerator at the correct LOP. I'd consider cutting the ears off of the front sight for aesthetic reasons, and I'd probably put a lower profile flash hider or thread protector on. I wouldn't be surprised if an aftermarket synthetic stock was available soon for this. Because it is a DBM, I would be temped to use the XS rail for the scout to mount a conventional leupold 1-4x. I really like scout scopes, so I'd probably end up using a scout scope anyway.

Oh... noise on the shorter barrel. I think this is hugely overstated. Not extremely louder than anything else. Louder than a 16" .223? I guess. Louder than a 18" .308? I guess. The argument I've heard is that folks are willing to take the occasional shot without ear pro out of a 20" .308, but not out of a 16". I'm not willing to take any occasional shot without ear pro unless it is suppressed. We always wear surefire ep3 sonic defenders in the field for loud noise attenuation in the case of taking a shot. It's a trade off of course. If it is an 18" or 20" barrel rifle, I'm not likely to have it with me in the first place. Going to 16" makes it something I'm very likely to have around.

We are fortunate in this matter that your conduct will be your marker and, thus, your reputation. The conduct of others on this forum has been, and will continue to be, their marker, and thus, their reputation. In the west, a person invests in one's reputation carefully. - 112Papa
New Post
1/7/2012 12:18 PM

 Thank you for the answers.  This is something I have given much thought to of late.  These type rifles seem very practical for the type hunting I do.  I really am leaning towards the Ruger right now, but by the time I have the funds together who knows what I will end up doing. 

New Post
1/7/2012 12:31 PM

 I like the way your rifle turned out Evan. I'll post some photos of mine in a few weeks once I get it finally sorted out.

My "diy" practical rifle started out as a pre-sporterized Remington 1903A3. It had holes drilled and tapped in the top of the reciever, and had been put in some fancy wooden stock. When I got it, it had no scope, not mounts, and no irons.

I took it to a smith and had the barrel cut to 20'', with custom scout scope mounts drilled and tapped into the barrel. Later, I found a Bushnell 2-6 power handgun scope for 100 bucks and mounted that up. After shooting Randy Cains practical rifle class with that setup, I ordered a Bell & Carlson synthetic stock, and did a bedding job on it. 

The work that I have remaining is to get front a rear iron sights mounted (I'll use a GI 03A3 rear sight), a pic rail similar to Evans, a little bit more bedding work, and possibly getting it cut further, probably in the 16-18'' range. 

Since I got the rifle as a hand me down, I've spent about $575 on it including the scope. I finally put some good quality ammo through it and found that it shoots a little better then 1.5 MOA.

Lately I've ordered some USGI replacement parts for it, including an extra extractor, ejector, magazine follower/spring. Might eventually get a spare bolt or something. 

New Post
1/7/2012 7:48 PM

Thanks for the write up on this Evan.  I've been committed to making my AR's (5.56 and a 6.8) work for general duties, but I definitely see the wisdom in your approach and what you have put together.  And about the time I started to wonder "how could I get started on a project like this" you brought up the GS.  This will be good for a mull.  Much appreciated.

Scot makes good points about the 6.8.  It is plenty powerful, and extremely accurate, but I have to reload to get the upper limit of performance from the round and to make it cost effective. 

New Post
1/7/2012 9:15 PM


Great conversation here. Thank you.
I appreciate the thoughtful insights in answering the question: “What’s it for?”
In this case, “it” is the solution. An all around/general purpose rifle(AA/GPR).
Implied in the question is an understanding of the problem that “it” solves.
Further, problems are influenced by the setting in which they exist. The setting for this problem/challenge and solution is the northern Rockies. Plain old standard citizen(not applied in an on the job circumstance).  Your mileage may vary.
I’ll start with a summary of my solution, discuss what I see as the challenge, and then provide some of my rationale for my criteria for a solution that meets my circumstance/problem/challenge.
Summary of my solution:
For an AA/GPR, I am currently engaging a scout-ish, DBM, bolt gun in .308( In this case, Scot mentioned a certain recent entry in stainless and walnut. Found one.   :{)   Hat tip to Scot.).
Present - Compact and handy.
Sufficiently powerful for its roles.
Fits. Including available vision, or not.
Logistically feasible.
Value. Investment grade.
Here’s why.
My assumptions about the problem/challenge include the following perspectives:
As Evan said, solutions often involve choices among tradeoffs.
Tradeoffs are a reality. Reality is full of tradeoffs. 
Perfect solutions are neat, concise, and something other than realistic.
Practical solutions that optimize performance in response to need may be as good as it gets.
Being able to harvest food is an asset.
‘nough said?
Arbiter of citizenship.
Citizens are able to repel tyranny, subjects aren’t.
To paraphrase, Capone is attributed as saying, “I notice I get more with a smile and a gun, than I get with just a smile”, or words to that affect.
See the works of T. Jefferson, and others.
 Evil exists. 
Some folks are hazardous. 
Not everyone shares a value set that respects the lives and property of others. 
The world is inhabited by a variety of folks. Some share a set of values that respect the lives and property of others. Some have a set of life guidance beliefs that do not respect the lives and property of others. Some of the folks with life guidance beliefs that do not respect the lives or property of others act out their beliefs with violence against other people. This violent behavior is without rational base. 
While we may accept that hazards by the acts of others exist, sometimes the exact coordinates of an encounter are unknowable.
If the exact coordinates were known, the hazard could be avoided(which is a preferred solution).
Because the violent behavior is not rational, the behavior can be described(most accurately, after the fact), and, sometimes, approximated.   In accepting that such irrational, violent behavior exists, that the behavior is acted out without a rational base, and that the acting out is at best approximated, we are left with the reality that the time and place of, and pre-condition to, the violent act are often neither reliably nor precisely nor accurately predictable(in terms of exact time, place, or pre-condition).
Evil may come to you, through no fault of your own.
The normal conduct of our lives includes unforeseen exposures to hazards.
(in the interest of defining our terms, in this case, the hazard is defined as - people whom, unbeknownst to us, do not respect the lives and property of others).
Certainly, the way to avoid being mugged in a sleazy bar, is to avoid being in a sleazy bar. 
While living an engaged life, we move about, going about our business. That we do so while respecting the lives and property of others in no way assures that all other folks share that perspective all the time. That we conduct ourselves in a manner that respects others in no way assures that we are within the reach only of like minded folks. At times, we are unable to foresee acts of violence that are not rational. This is because, simply, not every person who would commit acts of violence that lack a rational base exists with full disclosure signage, readable from great distances, without glasses. Exactly who these folks are, where, when, and why they will act, and the pre-conditions that exist prior to the act are not knowable, and are, thus, a hazard we know of, but, may, sometimes, be difficult to detect prior to an overt appearance or precursor. 
Clearly, awareness and alertness are essential keys to early detection. If we are aware of what we are looking for, and alert to our surroundings, sometimes, it’s easier to spot .
We prepare, generally, for foreseeable hazards, the specifics of the arrival of which cannot always be specifically anticipated and arranged as a pinpoint appointment. We do so by being generally aware, alert and prepared. This condition has been described as nonspecific relaxed alert.(see Principles of Personal Defense, J.D. Cooper)
So, a response to accepting the foreseen presence of the potential for violent acts perpetrated by people who do not respect the lives and property of others, some of which is not readily identifiable before the act, is to prepare one’s self to stop those acts before the act is consummated.   Some of those acts may occur at conversation distances, others at greater distances. An approach to addressing foreseeable hazards, with unknowable time/place/identity is to prepare generally, for use in response, specifically.
Right tool for the job.
Close range interpersonal confrontations are best handled with the more discrete and portable tools. Longer range contact with hazards are best addressed by tools organized to address longer ranges(as my teenage associates would say, “Duh”).
Once a person with an appreciation for the various hazards in life addresses the closer range problems and tools, tools for further range problems are sound next investments.
Longer range conflict mediation and resolution tools may include a rifle.
Here’s my current criteria for a AA/GPR, suitable for my circumstance.
Present. Presence is relevant. Absent is not.
To be effective the rifle must be present. To be present the rifle must be compact, and handy. Compact, in terms of overall size and mass. Handy in terms of, well, handling.
So, the rifle that effectively addresses the above described problem/challenge must be compact and handy.
With compact and handy(executed thoughtfully) could likely come a reasonable weight.
Effective. In circumstances appropriate to a rifle, any rifle present is better than no rifle present.
A rifle that provides power that is adequate to address the myriad challenges(including harvest, response to hazards, etc) is, at distances within the operating reality and capability of the operator, effective.
In the field, stuff happens. The ability to endure “stuff happening” is essential to maintaining effectiveness, and realizing a return on a major, long term investment.
Fit. The optimum AA/GPR fits the operator.
Including their eyes.
As Toby Keith has said so eloquently, “I ain’t as good as I once was, but I'm as good once as I ever was.”
For my circumstance, this includes an optic of some sort that suits the purpose of the piece and the preferences of the operator. In this case, a Leupold Scout Scope, fixed power, forward mount. BUIS(Ghost ring rear).
As Evan suggested, LOP of the stock is especially worthy of one’s attention.
From my perspective, fit facilitates skill. Skill is developed through practice. Practice is made more efficient with proper fit. Efficient practice is sustainable ability. Sustainable ability is capacity. Capacity broadens life.
Functional, with do-able care and feeding. Logistically feasible.
As Scot noted, feeding is an issue. The more common the feed, the easier. The easier, the more capacity can be applied to other parts of one’s life. Scot was clearly deterred by what he described as an almost obsessive level of activity in seeking reliable, continuous stream of fodder. Seems that the same would apply for replacement parts.
Scot has pointed out the virtues of leading a grey life.
Evan noted a specific circumstance, among family and friends, where a certain look resulted in a certain, predisposed conclusion. The conclusion resulted in some expenditure of social capital.
While the underlying premise of the conclusion was inaccurate and unrealistic, the results were real in that they resulted in an action and, in this case, a re-action.
Discrete carriage of/by a person allows for the optimum application of limited resources, including social capital.
What are the consequences of the arrangement? Both intentional, and unintentional.
Value. Investment grade.
Since this is a lifetime, multipurpose tool, the expenditure is an investment. Sound investments generate a return. See above.


I look forward to learning about what is working for others, and under what circumstances.

Best regards,


New Post
1/7/2012 9:34 PM

112Papa, thanks for your contribution, particularly laying the groundwork for why one would always have a rifle handy. This is something that we in the "gun culture" don't always take the time we should to explicate. For many it is a traditional or instinctive action. Stepping back to first principles and reevaluating is always good. It also helps inform our choices.

Hansford, I can see it now, the first Ruger GS equipped with an S&B short dot. You've gotta resist lest we all become "what we once beheld". 1911s, Scout Rifles, what would LAV think?

The Winter Rondy this year is going to be quite the accumulation of 1980s style iron. Before I finished this rifle, the trapper length 45/70 would have been the choice. Now there's no doubt what I'll be bringing for a long gun. I know I won't be alone in my choices.

We are fortunate in this matter that your conduct will be your marker and, thus, your reputation. The conduct of others on this forum has been, and will continue to be, their marker, and thus, their reputation. In the west, a person invests in one's reputation carefully. - 112Papa
New Post
1/7/2012 9:53 PM


Please do consider developing the butt cuff for .30 cal.  And, perhaps, a version that would work with RGS 10 round plastic mags?

Thanks for helping build a useful body of knowledge and experiences.

I appreciate the wisdom shared by others, and the opportunity to consider why I do what I do.

Respecting the classics,


New Post
1/7/2012 10:38 PM

"Hansford, I can see it now, the first Ruger GS equipped with an S&B short dot. You've gotta resist lest we all become "what we once beheld". 1911s, Scout Rifles, what would LAV think?"

I won't be doing any major system changes in the near term.  I'm pretty happy with the setup I have (the identically setup 5.56 and 6.8 took a while to accomplish).  I've tried a lot of different things over the years, and while I won't make any big proclamations about being an "AR guy" or anything, they are serving me well...for now.  Just tonight I found myself at the Noveske site wondering about the trade-offs of a 10.5" 6.8 upper and a Surefire mini can.  The mull never ends.

As for the LAV...who knows.  He probably wouldn't be surprised to hear I still find myself sticking a G19 into my kitbag for a run, or desiring a J frame for those times when discrete means really discrete. <end thread drift>

112Papa, nice post.

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