Monday, May 31, 2010

Living Life in Peace ~~ Thank a Vet

Lately it's been all about boats (well only one, really) and guns (definitely more than one) and shooting and not so much the knitting, which has been sporadic. Sporadic or not, I've only 1½ more stripes left—34 more rows on the acrylic Dr Who Scarf. And all the ends have all be woven in. I may be finished with the knitting today or tomorrow. Then on to the washing, lightly block it and then make and attach the tassels.

The second wool Dr Who scarf has been delivered. Two down and the third one is almost complete.


As I mentioned in my last post, Mr WK and I took a break from workin' on Spray to shoot an IDPA match at Corndodger Station last Sunday. Early this year the first steps were taken to make a new range with four bays. Since then it's snowed and rained and then rained and rained some more. Last Sunday was the first time it was dry enough to use the new range. Some areas near the back berms were still soft and muddy and we used a couple of rocks to step on to paste those targets. We can also shoot a full 180°.

This month we had 26 shooters. Several of us took the Safety Officer class this winter so we had plenty of SO's. We used only three bays as the fourth bay is not finished and split into three groups. That moved things along rather quickly. Two of the bays held two CoF's.

Over the winter our club acquired a vehicle that runs, just not well, that we can use for CoF's (Courses of Fire). I think it was shot twice in an earlier match at Corndodger Station this year but not in any vital areas. Our match directors are making good use of some of the tactics we learned in the Fighting From a Vehicle class many of us took last August.

The CoF with the vehicle started with the shooter in the vehicle, gun holstered, door closed, hands on the wheel, and a threat target just outside the fully opened passenger window. At the buzzer, you drew and shot the threat target through the passenger window (one or two hands, didn't matter), exited the vehicle and fired at two BGs (bad guys) 5 yards ahead of the middle of the hood from the V between the open door and the vehicle, moved to the rear of the vehicle and shot a BG 7 yards off the right rear of the vehicle then moved to the right rear of the vehicle and shot two more BGs in line with but 15 yards downrange from the two BGs in front of the hood.

As we've come to anticipate the CoF's for "our" first Corndodger Station IDPA match this year were challenging but fun. Another "favorite" CoF was 15+ yards; 4 threat targets; every one out in the open, no one moving and not shooting from behind cover. Straight up; stand there, aim and fire. Piece. Of. Cake. ... Eight shots to the body four out and four back strong hand bang, bang, bang, bangbang, bang, bang, bang — then Four Head Shots with your WEAK hand. Yeah.

Then there was the CoF with the dogs. Three dogs attacking your dog or your kid or whomever but all low to the ground and close together. The non-threat in the middle overlapped by a "dog" on each side and on top. So you had to be careful WHERE you shot the three threat targets so you wouldn't shoot through the threat into the non-threat target behind. And this was also at 20 or so yards. At least you could use both hands ... this time.


The second of our twice-a-month indoor matches was the following Thursday. Again, great CoF's. Lotta movin' and shootin', runnin' and gunnin'.
  • bad guys runnin' atcha and bad guys runnin' away from ya, ostensibly shooting back at you as they ran
  • shootin' with your weak hand, your strong hand and either or both hands in the same CoF
  • tactical reloads, reloads with retention and shooting to slide lock then reloading
  • tactical sequence (slicin' the pie) and tactical priority in the same CoF
  • and the ever popular chargin' the bad guys.
Good stuff and good fun.


Those were the "official" shoots. Mr WK and I also just went shooting on our own. When we have an indoor match we often try to arrive an hour and a half or at least an hour before the match so we can just shoot. Which is exactly what did on Thursday. Mr WK has a S&W M&P full-sized .40. When we first began to reload we shot 155 gn projectiles. When we bumped up hard against the shortages last year we bought almost anything, bullet-wise we could find; which means that at one point we bought some 155 gn and some 165 gn bullets. The bullets are both "flat point" but the 165 gn projectiles are rounded closer to the flat point than the 155 gn projectiles. Somewhere along the way, we'd loaded 165 gn projectiles then switched to 155 gn projectiles and we didn't change the amount of cartridge crimp.

Cue the harp music and the blurred quick montage of a flashback . . . . At the last match in February of all things, Mr WK had several failure to feed issues which rarely happened with that gun. Was it the gun? Was it the ammo? Was it the shooter? After much trial and error and testing, it was the ammo. The 155 gn ammo to be exact and only in that gun. The S&W 4006 .40 would eat anything we fed it. The M&P would only consistently shoot the 165 gn projectiles. Mr WK is now in the process of re-crimping several hundred rounds. The final, final, final, final test of the fix was Thursday and it shot 100 rounds of re-crimped 155 gn flawlessly. Not a single failure to feed. While all this was going on, Mr WK only shot 165 gn bullets from that M&P. He's decided he likes those better anyway, which is good because we HAVE more of those.


Sunday, we spent a great chunk of the afternoon at the outdoor range just west of Topeka. We took several long guns; both .30 calibers, both .223s, the bolt-action Marlin .22LR and a .357 magnum revolver. We started off at the pistol range as Mr WK wanted shoot it. I ranged around behind him lookin' for stranger brass then I moved up to the empty free-form pistol range and was rewarded with a nice handful.

Then we drove down to the rimfire range. We've had the inexpensive scope that "came with" the Marlin on and off so many times. We bought a better scope for it but it's now on ... ??? ... something else. A very inexpensive four power scope for that rifle is not good. We can do OK at 50 yards but can't see well enough with it to shoot well at 100 yards. We can both consistently hit the steel turkey at 100 yards but that's a HUGE target
and we're not aiming at the head. But we sighted the inexpensive scope in at 50 yards then moved up to the high-power range. A better scope for that rifle is in our future.

At the high-power range, we checked-in with the only other shooters there then I set off to tack up targets at 200 and 100 yards. I'd zeroed my .308 at 100 yards and had just begun zeroing at 200 yards when we stopped last time. When we were here last time, as always we got to chattin' with the other shooters and found out that the 1/10 twist of my .308 bull barrel will be most accurate with a 165 gn projectile. I'd already purchased and received 2K 150 gn bullets for my .308 and Mr WK's 30-06 Mossberg but I bought a box of 100 just to see. There is a bit more recoil in the 165 gn bullets but I don't see any difference in accuracy. Perhaps if I tinkered with the powder and load and shot at distances of more than 300 yards ... but I have no desire to compete in a high power match. However, when you shoot a lot, an accumulated amount of "a bit more recoil" makes a difference. I'm going to stick with the 150 gn projectiles and zero for them at 200 yards. I'm shooting ½-1" groups at 200 yards with the 150 gn bullets so I'm not too worried about accuracy.

I also remembered to move the bra strap off my left shoulder so I wouldn't have a bruise the exact size of the little adjustment thingy. I'm still working with what combination of bench rest shooting bags work best for me and how I shoot. I have it mostly figured out but I need to tweak it. I need to remember to bring one of our type IV throwable boat cushions out with us next time. I'm short and I think if I can lift myself off the bench a bit more I can get a better position and won't have the stock up against my collar bone; which is tender today. It was fine when it was 20°and I had on several layers and a great huge coat but in just a T-shirt, not so much.

Mr WK put several rounds downrange with his 30-06. He's zeroed at 100 yards and uses the mil dots on his scope to shoot 200 yards. He can shoot 2" groups at either yardage. I brought my .223 but again but never shot it. Mr WK has a Bushmaster with a 20" target barrel. As with his 30-06 he's zeroed at 100 yards and uses the mil dots for 200 yards and shoots 2" groups bench resting it.


This morning, it was cool and overcast because of the rain the previous evening. We got home about 30 minutes ahead of it. We sat on our little patio, enjoyed the sounds of the little waterfall in our tiny fountain, listened to and watched the birds at the feeders, drank coffee, noshed on lemon blueberry pound cake and cleaned guns.

Life is good.

blogging to: a quiet house

reading: The Yearling by Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings
and
Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand

Parting Shot:
Taps

Day is done,
gone the sun,
From the hills,
from the lake,
From the skies.
All is well,
safely rest,
God is nigh.

Go to sleep,
peaceful sleep,
May the soldier
or sailor,
God keep.
On the land
or the deep,
Safe in sleep.

Love, good night,
Must thou go,
When the day,
And the night
Need thee so?
All is well.
Speedeth all
To their rest.

Fades the light;
And afar
Goeth day,
And the stars
Shineth bright,
Fare thee well;
Day has gone,
Night is on.

Thanks and praise,
For our days,
‘Neath the sun,
Neath the stars,
‘Neath the sky,
As we go,
This we know,
God is nigh.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Closer

Spray is closer. The third Dr Who Scarf is closer. That's about says it all.

I've got about 190 more rows to knit on the acrylic Dr Who Scarf. I'm keeping up with weaving in the ends. When I finish it won't take long to put it to bed. I like knitting the scarves but I'm kinda tired of garter stitch (every stitch and every row knitted) even though it easy and soothing knitting. I am really tired of the colors.


Spray is inching closer to being launched but won't make it in for Memorial Day Weekend. In the past, we would have pushed hard to get it done and been very disappointed if it didn't happen. This year, not so much. We have had many, many, many weather delays in getting Spray ready to launch. If was warm enough it was raining, had just rained or was about to rain again. If it wasn't raining, it was too cold.

Port waterline stripe installed

We have got quite a bit done though. As I noted in my last post the waterline striping tape had arrived. We tried it with the narrow red stripe down but it looked better on top so that's how we put it on. First off we laid down a length of that blue low-tack painters tape just below the nice shiny area where the old tape was to use as a guide.
The tape is about 3" wide and we don't apply striping tape very often. It's definitely not perfect. There are a few creases and several bubbles and some waves but all in all it's not a bad job. We did one side and then it rained for a few days.

This past Friday it was going to be dry for at least two days and the nighttime temperature was to be well about the 50ยบ needed for the anti-fouling paint (aka bottom paint) to be applied. First we put on the other side of the waterline stripe. Then I spread out a couple of the ubiquitous blue tarps under the boat and donned rubber gloves. I had about a 1½ gallons of acetone and a roll of paper towels. I crawled under the boat and began to liberally and heavily acetone the bottom of the boat. There was a great breeze and the temperature was in the low 70's. I rubbed paper towels saturated with acetone over the entire bottom where there was bottom paint. Now we were ready to paint.

We knew it was be much warmer the next day so after a stop at the hardware store for short napped paint rollers and a cheapo roller handle we got to the boat about 10am. While Mr WK stirred and stirred and stirred the paint which had sat for over a year I taped off the starboard side. We'd left the tape on from where we applied the waterline tape the night before. Then I spread out the tarps underneath the boat again. I donned rubber gloves again and lightly acetoned from about the middle of the boat forward.

By that time, the paint was ready. As I was already in position under the boat with my sacrificial T-shirt, shorts, hat, socks and green-stained lawn mowing shoes Mr WK brought the roller tray with paint and a brush over to me.

View of the newly painted bottom from the front

See those cross bars on the trailer in the photo above? There are three. The first and last sections are wider so I crawled over the first one and reached as far back as I could to paint the keel and bottom with a brush. Then I crawled back over the support and moved to the other side and did the same thing. Once both sides were done as far back as I could reach, I painted the front of the keel and around the trailer bunks. Then I crawled out completely and switched to a roller to finish the bow. Then I moved to one of the sides and continued with the roller from the waterline down to the trailer bunk to the end of the bunk.

Meanwhile, Mr WK while keeping my paint tray filled was working on the rudderblade. He'd found a way to hang it off the front of the trailer, acetoned it like it did the bottom the night before, taped it off and painted it.

Newly painted rudder blade (with the blue low-tack painters tape still on it) and the newly painted bottom with the painters tape removed

By this time I was ready for a longish break so while I rested in the shade and drank water, he rollered the other side of the boat from the waterline down to the bunk to the end of the bunk. Mr WK moved the tarps to the stern and I crawled back under and did a repeat performance with the brush on the rear of the keel and the bottom of the boat between the trailer bunks and the keel. Meanwhile, Mr WK taped off the stern and did the little bit that was on the stern.

Newly painted stern and under the stern

In the photo above notice how flat it is under the stern. Mr WK painted all that with the roller. While he did that, I sat on that piece of styrofoam there and with actetone began to remove the multitude of blue paint blotches from my legs and arms. I only got a tiny bit on my bangs thanks to my hat and my hands were paint-free thanks to the rubber gloves. I also only had a few blue freckles on my face.

We peeled the tape, tossed the cheapo paint tray, roller, roller handle and brushes into a trash bag and went home to shower.


We went back that evening to move the rudderblade to the back of the boat and stow the paint can with the now dried paint in the cockpit.

We're also making good progress on getting the mildew and mold smell out of the cushions. Last Wednesday before one of the numerous days of rain, I stripped all the covers off the four cushions I had at home and set the thick foam inserts outside on the patio to air. Friday, I washed the covers and draped them over the patio furniture and set the three plywood supports outside, too. Tuesday, I thoroughly wet down the three largest foam inserts and splashed some of that Febreeze Laundry Odor Eliminator on both sides. Then I walked all over both sides to squish in it then hoisted them up on the picnic table to hose off both sides then let them drip dry in the sun. They don't smell like mildew or mold anymore; they smell strongly of the product. I'm hoping that leaving them outside in the sun, wind and rain will lessen that smell—as it's really strong. It was supposed to rain Tuesday afternoon, all night and most of Wednesday but now when I WANT it to rain it's not. I'll rinse them again if it doesn't rain. The mildew and mold smell had been greatly reduced by leaving them outside for a week so maybe this too will pass. The plywood supports smell like sweet wood again. We take them in when it looks like it's going to rain otherwise they'll be outside with everything else until we actually launch the boat.

We were too tired and sore to mess with the window or put the first coat of teak sealer on Saturday afternoon / evening. We had an IDPA match on Sunday so that was out. Monday we were both tired from Sunday's match and I did three loads of laundry, all of which I hung outside to dry.

We are close and we'll get to the few remaining items after the next rain.

blogging to a quiet house

reading: Devices and Desires by P D James (an Adam Dalgliesh mystery)
and
Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand

Parting Shot:

Sunday, May 16, 2010

FO! FO! FO!

It's usually the way. The most time consuming projects, done properly turn out the best and are the most satisfying. That's a bit how I feel about the second Dr Who Scarf. It's complete except for the tidying up and delivery. As far as I'm concerned, it's a done deal.

Tidying up involves rewinding and weighing the partial skeins of leftover yarn, recording the info and bagging each color up individually then all the colors as a whole. as this yarn was a complete project itself. I also write up notes on every project. Those notes along with my row counts and any other notes I made on note cards, a copy of the pattern, either the ball bands from used up yarn or a copy of them if I have yarn left and at least some of the ends for color samples go into a plastic sleeve then put in a folder by project and year. I also keep the computer copy of the notes I made and those along with any notes I made in a spreadsheet or word processor and photos I took, go into an FO! file by project and year. I also have a spreadsheet where I keep a list of what I knit, who it was for, when I started the project, when I finished it, what pattern, yarn and needles I used, how much yarn I used and how much the project "cost" based on the cost of the yarn and what the object weights. Not as a big project as it sounds, but a satisfying one for me as it truly marks the end of a project.

This second Dr Who Scarf held ZERO surprises as I used the exact same number of rows in each stripe and yarn as the first one. The recipient of this second scarf is about the same height as the first recipient, tall! I was able to use the same needles and cast on the same number of stitches. I'd purchased extra yarn for the first scarf as it needed to be so much longer than any I'd seen and that turned out to be a good thing. All the dye lots matched from one skein to the next as I finished all the partial skeins leftover from the first scarf. This fall I may make a couple of watch caps for the recipients to use up some more of the leftover yarn.

The acrylic Dr Who Scarf—scarf #3—is 73% complete; only 330 more rows to knit. As I mentioned before, I'm weaving in the ends as I go. It will make the time from when the knitting is finished to delivery a lot shorter. It does take a good amount of time to weave the ends in so they won't come out easily, so they don't show on the right side of the scarf and so the back side of the scarf looks tidy. As this scarf is NOT wool, the ends will never felt into their surroundings. I left the ends longer than I did on either of the two wool scarves so I could have a longer section to weave in then back track on itself.

In other knitting, I haven't done a thing. I want to get this last Dr Who Scarf done and out of my life so I can get back to my knitting. I haven't knit in the round on socks in a few months and I'll bet I haven't picked up the Flemish Braid Scarf in six or seven months. It will be good to get back to them.


And another FO! of sorts. My DPMS Panther LR-308 is now officially broken in. I worked through the 25 rounds of shoot one, then clean the barrel. Now I'm done with the 100 rounds of shoot ten then clean the barrel. I suppose now I can shoot 1,000 rounds then clean the barrel. Heh. By then the barrel will be worn out and I'll get to start again with a new barrel.

My rifle is sighted in a 100 yards and using the mil dots on my scope I'm good at 200 yards. I'm going to sight it in at 200 yards so I can move easily from 200 to 100 or 200 to 300 yards
once I get the high-power range director's OK for the 300 yard range. My biggest challenge is bench resting the whole rifle. I'm used to bench resting just the barrel and pulling the stock firmly into my shoulderwhich is fine for 100 yards and under. For me it moves around way too much to do that for very long with a heavy rifle or much more than 100 yards and up. I've finally figured out which bags work best for me and how to adjust them so that every thing's at the right height. The only problem is that they are not as firm as I'd like and after a couple of shots I need to fluff them up. I'm going to make at least two more bags that are quite firm.

What is definitely NOT an FO! is Spray. We were hoping to have her in the water by now but last week and all weekend if it wasn't raining, it was about to rain or had just finished raining and would rain again soon. We've accomplished nothing actually on the boat since my last post. However, we do have the repaired rudderhead back and it looks better than it did when it was new!! I got new gray line for the controls and new clam cleats which still need to be installed.

We got the new waterline stripe today. It's a lighter blue than the shear stripe and boat name which is just below the rub rail. It also has a narrow red stripe above it. It's far enough away from the shear stripe with the red stripe between to look OK. Mr WK and I are thinking we may install the stripe with the narrow red stripe down, next to the bottom paint. The next time we go out, we're going to tape it on with some of that low tack painters tape and see how it looks that way.

We still don't have our window and it's been too cold and wet to bottom paint or apply the three coats of teak sealer. Earlier in the week between rain squalls, I took our V-berth cushion and the two main saloon settee cushions into our local chandlery. They do sail and cushion repairs. The settee seats on either side of the main saloon have a thick piece of plywood on the bottom as they cover an opening to a fiberglass storage compartment. They only needed a couple of minor repairs where the fabric on one of the bottom edges has repeatedly been wet and finally weakened and tore. The ripped area is about 10" long. The V-berth cushion is almost beyond saving so they are reusing the foam but making a new cover for it. I picked up the two settee cushions from them on Sunday and chose a dark blue fabric for the replacement cushion. We can launch without that.

It's supposed to be drier and warmer this week, especially toward the end of the week and the weekend. We're hoping to install the stripe one evening this week and get at least a couple coats of teak sealer on over two evenings.
It's supposed to rain Thursday so we'll see. I don't think we'll be able to paint until the weekend. We'll bring the rudder out then so we can paint it at the same time. I hope we get the window in before then weekend. We don't want to launch until the window is installed. We can launch without all three coats of teak sealer on. Once the window is installed we can bring the boom and mainsail back out and install them. So close and yet so far.

blogging to: Ole Miss Student Union Jai Ho Break-out and Glitter in the Air by Pink at the Grammy's this year

reading: Biting the Bullet by Jennifer Rardin

Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand

Parting Shot: Great Political Ad!!

Monday, May 10, 2010

Mostly Sunny with a Chance of Doom and Gloom

Still knitting and still working on getting Spray ready to launch. Things have been moving along well concerning Spray's launch but they've really slowed down now. Mr WK got the generator working well and we set out last Sunday (May 2) and got quite a bit done. We went out every evening last week except for Friday.


The hull's been polished, the rubrail treated,


the entire waterline stripe removed,


all the teak has sanded and cleaned and sanded again





(well mostly sanded again ... I still have a few places that need another go.)



The aluminum rudderhead was cracked and it's off at the welder's being repaired. We're striking out however with getting the plexi-glass window replaced. The local place where we had it done last time doesn't have ½" plexi-glass, it's a bit thinner and it's not as dark as we want but it would work. BUT, they have a gun buster sign in the their window. We decided to walk and told them why.

We took the complete window we use as a template to another place 50 miles away and they had a piece. About we week later when I called to check on progress they said they'd discovered the piece they have is actually bronze not dark gray. They were vague about when they discovered this so I imagine it wasn't 30 minutes before I phoned. They're supposed to be checking with their supplier to see if I have to purchase an entire piece for $200-300 but so far no word and we would still have to pay to have them cut and drill it. If I don't hear back later today, we're going to pick up our piece.

Mr WK has found a sheet on the internet for $200 (not including shipping) that's the correct width and the right color. It looks like that's how we're going to go. We'll just get a different blade for our circular saw and bits for the drill. We'll find a place in the house to store the rest of the plexi-glass for the next time.

As I was writing this post earlier today, the glass place phoned to say that we would have to buy a sheet 4' x 8' sheet of plexi-glass and it would be close to $300 by the time it was all said and done AND we'd have all this extra plexi-glass. As I mentioned above we'd already decided if that was the answer to do it ourselves. The glass place called back a few minutes later. They had dropped and broken our template, the ONE whole original window. CRAP!! In light of that the glass place has decided to purchase the plexi-glass in the color we wanted, cut it and drill for free. Sometimes, not freaking out and yelling at the person on the phone, even though you want to, is a good thing. The plexi-glass sheet will be in on Friday and they hope to have it done and us out of their lives forever and ever. Amen. by late that afternoon. Fingers are crossed that it will be done in time for us to pick it up Friday so we can install it over the weekend.

As to the anti-fouling paint for the bottom, that's very weather and temperature dependent. The temperature of the air and the hull need to be consistently above 50°F. for at least 16 hours while it dries. And, of course, about the time we were done spraying chemicals on the boat for other things (cleaning the teak and taking off the waterline stripe) that would streak new bottom paint that's when the nighttime temperatures began to be in the low 50's to mid 40's and rain. We MAY be able to paint Tuesday, that is is Mr WK doesn't get a page for a service call. Otherwise, it's the weekend.

The waterline stripe is also supposed to be here by Friday so we may have a very busy weekend putting the final touches on Spray; replace the window, bottom paint the boat (I really don't see us getting it done on Tuesday) and a bit more sanding on the teak then seal it (three coats with 24 hours drying time between coats). All those left will be a bit of a clean up inside and out to clear off the worst of the stomping around on it, bring out all the stuff we took off.

So far the knitting on the third Dr Who Scarf is rolling along. I'm weaving in the ends on this one as I go. The knitting is around 60% complete.

On the second scarf, all the ends have been woven in and it's also been washed and lightly blocked. It's now ready for me to make and attached 38 tassels, 19 per side.

reading: Lawless Land by Les Savage, Jr (a western short story)

Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand

Parting Shot: "You’re coming of age in a 24/7 media environment that bombards us with all kinds of content and exposes us to all kinds of arguments, some of which don’t always rank all that high on the truth meter."

"With iPods and iPads and Xboxes and PlayStations, — none of which I know how to work — information becomes a distraction, a diversion, a form of entertainment, rather than a tool of empowerment, rather than the means of emancipation.”

“All of this is not only putting new pressures on you, it is putting new pressures on our country and on our democracy.” ~ President Obama 5/9/10 during Hampton University, VA commencement speech

Saturday, May 1, 2010

ROAR!!

Nothing for eleven days then BANG! two right in a row . . . sorta!

Mr WK's been working on our cheap generator. We bought it for $200 five years ago. The last time we used it, 2008 for running just the 10" buffer so we could rubbing compound and polish the flat parts in the cockpit and polish the hull it was a struggle to keep it at full power so the buffer would run well. And it never did well when we plugged two things into it, such as the buffer and a shop vac. We're about thisfar from setting it out at the curb and making it someone else's problem.

We would only need to rent one for a few hours every spring—that way we wouldn't have to maintain or store it. Yes, it would be helpful in a long-term power outage (over 24 hours) but to get one that would run the fridge (even a small fridge) or other electrical needs would be expensive and large. We don't have a basement, easy access to the attic or a storage shed so storage of a better, more powerful unit would be problematic. (Would you keep an expensive, portable generator in a flimsy storage shed?) If Mr WK isn't satisifed with the way it runs by Saturday or Sunday we're going to rent one.

That way we can get the hull polished this weekend and I can bring along the shop vac and do the cabin. While we're there, I'm hoping we can also get the cracked window off, even though we don't have a replacement yet. We can tape a trash bag over the opening. I'm hoping it won't be a major job to get the window off. The original window had silicone in places it didn't need silicone and it was 20+ years old. This silicone is only two years old and I have some stuff that will dissolve it. If we can get the cracked window off and all the caulking off, it'll only take about 30 minutes to put in the new one. The best part is that we don't have to be careful and try to take it off all in one piece like we did last time. We already have a sample.

As far as the replacement window, we've been calling around and some places have suggested Lexan instead of plexi-glass. We're going to look at some samples and get some pricing based on what we want done when they see the piece. It looks like we're going to have to buy an entire sheet of Lexan rather than just the piece of cut plexi-glass. And none of the samples of anything we've seen is as dark or as thick as the original plexi-glass that was on the boat. It could be that Precision Boatworks had ordered some special plexi-glass. And wouldn't you know, the plexi-glass windows are one of the few things that they do not sell replacements for. I can understand. Having worked with folks long distance to get handknit socks to fit I can imagine the kind of templates and instructions the boat company would have received.


Other than me helping out when our club held an IDPA Classifier when Mr WK was working nights, we haven't been shooting much.
Wednesday, I got to go twice. My sister-in-law was formerly a non-shooter—not anymore. Here [scroll down] is where I yak about the first time we went shooting together. We've been a couple more times and the best time, other than the first time, was Wednesday.

I'd brought along the same 22LR pistol I did the last time
—a Browning Buckmark Field Camper similar to this one. It's a heavy .22 and so it has almost no recoil. A few days prior to his two weeks of nights, we'd gone shooting. I found a new one and so he did. More about mine, in a bit. Mr WK purchased a used Smith & Wesson model 686 .357 revolver with a 6" barrel. It really calms down the recoil on a .357 and shooting .38 special light handloads almost feels like you're shooing .22s.

We keep each other up on our new toys so I'd e-mailed them when we bought it Evidently, that gave her husband an idea. The day before we were to go shooting, he finds a 4" version and buys it. He shot a box of 50 .357's through it, cleaned it and put it in her range bag along with 50 rounds of our .38 special handloads. (Yeah, she looks like a real gunny now, with her targets in one hand and a range bag in the other. No more carrying just her gun into the range in the box in came in and having to rent ears and buy targets and ammo.)

She started off with the .22 as I suspected she would. I shot a couple of magazines through my new gun and then decided to see what the revolver felt like. It shoots just as nice as ours. I suggested she at least shoot it once. She never picked up the .22 the rest of the time we were there. She shot the rest of the box of 50. I think if we would have had another box, she would have shot most of that, too.

I could hardly wait to get back to her house and tell her husband that he'd lost his gun but I have a suspicion he brought it hoping that would happen.


MY new gun is a 9mm 3.8 XDm in all black. I love how it shoots. I have the medium palm swell on it. I love how it shoots. The recoil seems a bit less than with my Glock 19. I love how it shoots. It seems more accurate right out of the box than either of my Glocks were. That could be the match barrel talkin'. I've put over 500 rounds through it already and I love how it shoots.

Although it came with a holster and double magazine holder, I didn't like either for CC. If I adjust the holster to where the gun feels secure and won't fall out, I can't get it out of the holster without a LOT of pull. If I loosen the holster to where I can get it out, it feels like the gun is going to fall out of the holster. I purchased an IWB suede Galco like I have for my Glocks and my Sig P238 for CC. I'm going to get an Uncle Mike's Kydex holster for IDPA like I have for my Glocks for IDPA.

And speaking of IDPA, this gun will put me in a different classification. My Glocks are SSP (Stock Service Pistol) and the XDm will be ESP (Enhanced Service Pistol), by virture of the match barrel, I suppose. I will have to reclassify with my new gun. Until then I'll shoot it unclassified. I'll probably still be a Novice, however. It hasn't made me THAT much better ... yet.

I think the double mag holder will work for IDPA. For CC it doesn't hold the magazines close-enough to my body. They are offset from the base and tend to slant away from my body which is fine in IDPA with a cover garment but not so hot for CC in public with a loose T-shirt.

reading: Mating Season by Jon Loomis (a Detective Frank Coffin mystery)

Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand

Parting Shot:
Source