This series of articles was originally posted online as a series of reviews and the occasional rant.
I don’t claim to be anything other than a well versed enthusiast, former manufacturer of ammunition, and firearm retail store owner. I keep a collection of various rifles and I rotate them in and out with new additions and thinning down with what meets my fancy at the moment.
I have started dispersing my personal collection to friends and family to encourage some gun ownership and also to follow the concept of one rifle per freedom-ista. One beauty of giving your guns to friends and family is that you can still shoot them from time to time!
I started collecting rifles and reloading at a very young age (reloading at 10, and buying my own rifles at 12, swaging at 15) I worked my entire freshmen year at high school to buy a new and complete reloading bench, presses, swaging dies and supplies.
In college I had gotten involved with the re-enactors as a hobby and spent lots of time with two friends who were class 3 dealers. On my 21 birthday I celebrated by filling out my forms for a Class 6 and FFL for myself (this habit can get bad BTW) I disposed of both the class 6 and FFL after marriage (and facing the fact that I could not make a decent profit in the business).
I don’t think I have ever fired a rifle I did not like learning about, but I have developed some personal dislikes and likes over the years for various reasons… There are no bad guns, only design limitations, quality, use, and dealing with the possible belligerent, annoying, and often ignorant, cult members-fans that faun over them.
To break this down logically I needed to come up with a list of categories to evaluate likes and dislikes, facts, reasons, and the needed content for a more full review.
Personal – what items are strictly personal, things like “my hands are too big”, “the design is uncomfortable to shoot”, “it looks funky”, “I hate limey guns (and limeys) and similar items of personal reaction.
Function – there are operational and or design features that lend an element of unreliability.
Design flaws – features or construction can lead to parts breakage or unsafe/dangerous continued operation.
Quality – the majority of samples of the rifle are of poor quality and or construction.
Caliber/Ammunition – the choices of cartridges are limited to obsolete, unusual/hard to find, or poor performing/ineffective for use ammunition.
Use – the rifle is to specific for one use and does not have a wide enough venue of operation (like a collectable or high end hunting rifle, or heavy, shinny, not weather resistant and more).
Current production – While this would not negate a good rifle it could prove to make the rifle hard to repair or even obtain to begin with, availability IS an issue. No new production of units or repair parts could render a rifle useless, many excellent military rifles fit into this problematic category due to obsolescence.