Ranch Logo        U S Flag     




VOLUMES 201 & 202 -------- MARCH/APRIL 2019

Continuing with my efforts to post material on my newsletters as I have it prepared, this April 29 posting is the third and final installment for March/April 2019.  Scroll down for the entire newsletter.

March/April 2019

You may have heard about the controversy surrounding Washington State Initiative 1639, having to do with semi automatic firearms and other rules for gun storage, age limits, and 'enhanced background checks.'  It does get the attention of news media when the vast majority of County Sheriffs in Washington publicly announce that they believe the law is both unconstitutional and unenforceable, so they won't!

First, the Initiative itself contains over thirty pages of text, which was condensed into one page on the initiative signature documents as required by law.  The text was declared unreadable by a State Court Judge who ruled it could not go on the ballot for that reason.

This Judge was reversed by our State Supreme Court, and the Initiative went on the November ballot anyway.  The Initiative was passed by roughly 59% of the voters.  Interestingly, the Initiative passed by only 51% in metro Spokane, and was soundly defeated in all the rest of the state, except for the Puget Sound Area.  The Seattle area liberals, who vastly outnumber us 'eastsiders' overwhelmingly voted yes!  Keep in mind that these are the same voters who elected a quasi-socialist, anti-gun Governor, who has now thrown his hat in the ring to run for President!

As you will note as I discuss some of the Initiative's mandates, it also covers multiple subject matters, which is also prohibited by State law.  To the best of my knowledge, the Initiative has not been challenged on that issue.  Why, I have no idea.  Parts of the new law went into effect January 1, 2019, and the balance kicks in July 1, 2019.

The first thing the law does is define every semi-automatic long gun as an "Assault Rifle."  That's right, everything from the Ruger 10-22 and Savage .22 rimfires to the AR-15 in my gun safe suddenly, magically turned themselves into "Assault Rifles."  Next it decided that one must be 21 yeas of age instead of 18, to buy or own one!  Thirdly, one must show proof of 'firearms training,' which is undefined, undergo an 'enhanced' background check like the one required to buy a handgun in Washington, and imposes a 10 day waiting period before delivery.  (Why the FBI's NICS is not sufficient in both cases still escapes me.)

Then we have the 'Safe Storage Requirement.'  This applies to all guns and is supposed to prevent them from getting into the hands of 'prohibited persons.'  This is the provision the County Sheriffs' howled most loudly about being unconstitutional.  For some reason they believe the U.S. Constitution's prohibition against unreasonable search and seizure would make it difficult to enter a residence to make sure any guns are under lock and key!

Not unexpectedly, after Law Officers went public with their intention not to enforce this law, both the Attorney General and Governor sent letters to them, as well as licensed gun dealers, that they would suffer the wrath of state government should they fail to enforce the initiative's provisions, unless or until it is overturned by a court of law.  The AG's office also posted his letter and a list of 'FAQ's' on their state website.

I'm only going to report on one of the FAQ's and the AG's answer to illustrate what a cockamamie situation this whole thing is. Here is the question:

Does Initiative 1639 require that I keep my firearm in secure storage?

Here is the Attorney General's answer, and I quote:

No. The new law doesn’t directly require that a firearm be stored in a particular place or in a particular wayBut if your firearm is not in secure storage, and you knew or reasonably should have known that the firearm could be accessed by someone who is prohibited from possessing a firearm, such as a child, under some circumstances you may be charged with a crime.”

The ‘weasel wording’ in this one answer shows me the the Attorney General of the great state of Washington struggles mightily to find a way to explain this nonsense.  I thought case law is pretty concrete in requiring that a law must be clear and unambiguous so that the people understand what constitutes a violation and the penalty or penalties for that violation.  Seems to me this gobbledygook answer makes a perfect case for a challenge as ‘Unconstitutionally Vague’ and hopefully it soon will be.

March 23, 2019

Rick came up last night with his new Nikon scope and his NRA commemorative Kimber M84 Rifle.  Before I get into the scope mounting process, let me back up for some history of the rifle and scope.

The Kimber is in .308 Winchester caliber.  It came about via a lucky draw on a $10 raffle ticket at the 2010 NRA banquet here in Spokane.  The rifle has remained unfired in Rick's gun safe since.  To date Kimber has not ventured into a left hand version of the M84, so the incentive to deer hunt with it was not high for Lefty Rick.

Now to the scope.  Ann and I visited the nearby Cabela's store in Post Falls, ID a few weeks ago on a Saturday.  I saw a bin in the gun department that contained about a half dozen Nikon 3 to 9 X 40mm variable scopes.  The price was $99.97.  Even though the scopes are assembled in the Philippines, I reckoned  Nikon would not put their name on anything that is total junk, so figured this was a good deal.  But, since I was looking at AR-15 rifles at the time, did not buy one.  (More on the AR-15 later.)

I mentioned the $100 scopes to Rick the next day, and since I currently didn't have a spare, expressed regrets that I didn't buy one just for my inventory.   As I recall the spare scope I usually kept on the shelf went on the .270 Sako that somehow ended up in my safe a while back.

Rick immediately jumped on the concept of a $100 name brand scope and headed for Cabela's to see if they had any left.  He asked me, "Do you want one of they have some left?"

I declined, but apparently he saw the gleam in my eye, so showed up the next day with an extra.  I paid him, and now own a new Nikon!  (My new one is now set up to mount on an AR, or anything with a Picatinny accessory rail.)

On another recent trip to Cabela's, I picked up a set of Leupold's STD mounting bases for the Kimber M84.  Unlike several other rifle brands that accept the same bases as the Remington M700, the receiver rings on the Kimber are slightly smaller in diameter and thus require different bases.  I already had on hand a set of Leupold rings.

Now back to the scope mounting.

For operations like mounting a scope, a solid base to work from is the first consideration.  In our case the Tipton Gun Vise was enlisted.

The Kimber is set up in the Tipton Vise and
Rick is removing the plug screws from the base mounting holes.

A bit of rubbing alcohol to degrease the receiver rings where the bases will sit.

Degreasing the bottoms of the bases will also help prevent them from shifting under recoil.

Starting the base screws.  (The Kimber, unlike many other brands, has 8X40 base screw holes rather than the more common 6X48.  The Leupold bases include the requisite screws.)

Final torquing of the base screws with a Proto torque screwdriver.  (New Leupold base screws include NYLOK on the threads, and 22 inch-pounds is now recommended instead of the previous 28 for the 8X40 screws.)

Turning the lower half of the front dovetail ring into its slot with a Leupold ring wrench.  (If you don't have this tool, install the top of the ring and use a dowel or other method to turn in the base.  Many ruined scopes have resulted from trying to use the scope to do this.)

Front ring turned in to the dovetail slot and 'eyeballed' for straightness.

The rear ring is installed and centered via opposing screws which clamp into recesses on the ring bottom.

Alignment rods are clamped lightly into the rings and the front dovetail ring is turned to 'fine tune' the correct orientation.

With the correct alignment, we are now ready to remove the ring tops and lay in the scope.

Installing the ring tops and screws.  (In previous years it was important to keep the top and bottom ring parts paired and oriented, but with modern CNC machining, I've found this not to be an issue.)

The rings are snugged up so the scope will still rotate and move fore and aft in order to square the reticle and set the eye relief, then torqued to 22 inch pounds.

And this is the finished product!

After moving the table and opening some doors, we were able to use the LaserLyte bore sighter from garage to office wall to get the scope reticle lined up.  This procedure has consistently put me 'on the paper' at 100 yards, so we'll see how this one does as soon as the two feet of snow on the shootin' range melts!

For a more detailed tutorial on 'do-it-yourself' scope mounting, visit my January 2008 newsletter HERE.

April 29, 2019

I'm currently awaiting a shipment from Lyman Products that will, along with some gun cleaning samples provided by Otis Technologies, form the beginnings of my next newsletter.  I'm finally getting some items I requested from exhibitors at the Shot Show in Las Vegas back in January.

I'll also be reporting on a new firearm.  Our Spokane Valley Sportsman's Warehouse store had a big sale on select AR15's a few weeks ago and I had to add one of them to my inventory.  Now that we have finally lost all our snow, we will be wringing out and testing some guns; Including my Sig Sauer 9MM and both AR's.  I must be getting old, as shooting when it's cold and tromping through snow to get to the target stand ain't as much fun as it once was!

Hope you enjoy the reporting on the testing of the new toys.

I did have a pleasant surprise at the latest meeting at the Elks Lodge on April 24th.   After being called to the front of the room, I was presented with a certificate proclaiming that I was Elk Of The Year for fiscal 2018-19!  I was certainly surprised and very honored!

Elk Of The Year Certificate being presented to me by ER Marc Allen

So, with that, I'll get this uploaded and begin work on the next issue.

This month's hillbilly wisdom comes from an un-attributed quote that Ann dug up.  I liked it so much I added it to the signature line for outgoing emails on one of my email addresses:

Ignorance can be Educated; Crazy can be Medicated; But there is no cure for Stupid!

Well, it's time to shut down here, so. . . . .
'Til next time, Keep 'em shootin' straight, shoot 'em often, and above all, BE SAFE!!!

Copyright 2019 - All Rights Reserved