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  • March 31, 2009

    First Look: Benelli Vinci

    By Phil Bourjaily

    Benelli’s new Vinci has been a closely-kept secret until now. Today the gun has been officially unveiled on the company’s website. However, the marketing campaign has generated enough buzz that traffic is very high and you’ll grow old and gray waiting for the site to load today. For a peek at the new gun, look here:

    From what you can see here, the Vinci is not going to win awards for good looks, but I’m guessing it has some innovative features.

  • March 30, 2009

    A Brief Guide to Feckless* Rifles

    By David E. Petzal

    *Not a typo.

    The previous post elicited so many interesting opinions that I was able to get a second post out of it. Herewith:

    1. The message on the Badger muzzle brake and on the Claymore mine is “Front toward enemy,” not what I had. Once more my memory has done me dirt.

  • March 26, 2009

    Petzal: When is a Rifle Not Accurate Enough?

    By David E. Petzal


    Occasionally I’m asked: At what point is a rifle too inaccurate to use? (I’m also asked what diddy-wah-diddy means, but that’s not important now.) I’ve just come across a perfect example. It is a .30/06 of excellent pedigree, a factory rifle, not custom.

  • March 25, 2009

    Bourjaily: Thoughts on Lead Bans

    By Phil Bourjaily

    We never saw bald eagles when I was kid, but they’re a common sight along the Iowa River now that they no longer feed on DDT-laced fish and lead-poisoned waterfowl. While a lot of hunters will disagree with me, I really believe lead bans are not secret back-door attacks on guns and hunting but are acts of genuine, well-intentioned concern for the environment.

  • March 23, 2009

    Petzal: A Carrier Landing Story

    By David E. Petzal

    This has absolutely nothing to do with guns, but since many of you have military backgrounds, or an interest in militaria, I thought I’d pass it along because it’s sweet and has a lot of heart. It was told to me by a former Navy aviator (call sign Cobra) who served during the Late Unpleasantness in Vietnam, and the incident took place on the carrier Coral Sea in the Gulf of Tonkin in 1972.

  • March 23, 2009

    Bourjaily: Good News from Remington

    By Phil Bourjaily

    Take a look at the 2009 Remington catalog. What’s missing? Imports. After a brand-diluting dalliance with cheap Russian Baikal guns, reasonably nice Italian O/Us and Serbian Mausers, Remington once again is only selling guns made in the USA.

  • March 20, 2009

    Mr. Echols' Legend, Explained (Part III)

    By David E. Petzal

    The real test of a rifle like this is to use it as it is used in combat. So, with Field & Stream Senior Editor Colin Kearns holding a stopwatch, I paced off 25 steps from an NRA 25-yard Timed-Fire target (5 ½-inch bull) and cranked off five rounds as fast as I could, which turned out to be 9.9 seconds. I had two 10s, two 9s, and an 8. That is about as good as I can do with a heavy rifle. The bolt fairly flies back and forth, and the gun kicks remarkably little considering its 9-pound weight.

  • March 18, 2009

    Petzal: Why Life is Now More Complicated

    By David E. Petzal

    As a kid in the 1950s, I was taught that the Democratic Party was the repository of all human evil, and in the ensuing half-century I haven’t seen a lot to make me change that point of view. However, this past week, a pair of Democratic senators have done shooters a great service. To wit:

  • March 17, 2009

    Bourjaily: Bucking Slug Recoil

    By Phil Bourjaily

    Judging by the number of replies, my recent rant against the painful recoil of 3.5-inch lead turkey loads touched a nerve, so to speak. Some of you wondered about the recoil of shotgun slugs by comparison. The answer to that question is, there is no comparison. Shotgun slugs kick, but they can’t touch a 3.5-inch turkey load when it comes to bringing the hurt.

  • March 16, 2009

    Mr. Echols' Legend, Explained (Part II)

    By David E. Petzal

    Continued from Part I

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