Friday Tour d’Horizon, 2016 Week 08

Tour d’Horizon is widely recognized to be French for “Hognose got stuck with a bunch of open tabs.” So let’s clear the spindle!

This week’s installment includes:


I don’t wanna work, I just wanna bang on my gun all day.

Beretta M17 Modular Handgun System Entry?

Everybody knows that Beretta’s MHS entry is a version of their often-shown, never-shipped APX pistol. According to TFB, these pictures obtained by French gun magazine RETEX show the actual entry. Note a lot of Glock-like features, as the spec was written with Glock and the SIG 320 in mind, and complete ambidextrous controls (except takedown lever, which may be reversible, and mag release, which is à la M9).

Beretta MHS APX

Beretta MHS APX open

Beretta MHS APX left

Beretta MHS APX kit

Cop M16 Goes Walkabout

A citizen driving a road in a southern state noticed a black rifle in a ditch, and called the cops. The citizen then waited on the scene with eyes on the firearm until the locals recovered it. One look at it, and the cops knew what they were dealing with: another cop’s gun.

lost strayed stole M16

It’s a military M16 (Marked AR-15 M-16, Property of US Government) that has been converted to semi-only by removing the auto sear and pin, and installing a semi fire control group. The armorer for Local PD knew that they had guns like this, but all theirs were accounted for, and this one had a rack number on the stock that they knew wasn’t on their guns.

The other department in the AO that had some of these ex-military, section 1033 “police militarization program” guns was the state highway patrol, so they dialed up that agency — where a red-faced cop had just reported coming up short one AR.

Trooper Red-Face’s supervisor showed up to claim the rifle, and the 1970s-vintage M16 is safely home in its rack. All concerned are writing reports, and Red-Face is probably never going to put anything on the roof or trunk of his cruiser again.

Oh, one last thing. Red-Face? Reportedly a rookie, in his probationary period. This is one way to make a lasting first impression.

The full details are at and Bob had it at first.

Thanks for the tip — you know who you are!

Army Has New Lube

Is it any good? Well, is it as good as FrogLube (which is coconut oil) (so is Seal1) or FireClean (which is canola oil)? Well,  according to the guys at Picatinny arsenal, speaking to KitUp, the Army’s new dry lube is all that, and isn’t going to get raped by some blogger with a spectrograph and a forebrain full of collegiate chemistry. “This is a high tech innovation…” and the warfighters are going to love it when they get it. Roll on that day. Since they’re not selling this to the public with SEAL promotional techniques, maybe it’s actually good stuff.

A Pox on your Serpa

We’re really, really, really tired of people defending this ND-inducing tupperware tub of fail and so we were delighted to see Tam reporting on a Karl Rehn takedown of a guy who should know better’s video in defense of one of his pub’s big advertisers. Read both of their respective Whole Things™, Tam for the snark and Karl for the content.

Yes, the military did buy lots of Serpas, one of the less advisable expenditure of unit funds. Our unit bought 84 of them. We threw 84 of them away before we had an ND, because we’re smart enough to learn from the other guy’s mistakes and don’t have to wait to make our own. We then bought 84 Safarilands, and didn’t ND with them. (Yes, you buy cheap holsters when you’re arming a whole company. If the geardos want upscale holsters, they buy their own because you could never get two of them to agree on one holster. The Safariland was a satisficing selection).

Can you run a Serpa holster without NDing? Sure. People do. Can you ND with any other holster? You bet your life. (Literally). But our point is this: safety is like a stack of swiss cheese, preventing an accident from getting through the holes because no hole goes through every slice. Safety is not having no holes, it’s managing risk so that the holes you can’t avoid don’t line up. The Serpa holster is one time you get to choose whether to have a hole in the slice or not.

(As God is our witness, Small Dog heard “swiss cheese” being typed, and came in, begging. He doesn’t do metaphor well).

Dumb Pols Throw Money at Not-So-Smart Guns

In Brooklyn, a guy with the laughable title of Borough President has decided he will bestow $1m public largesse on one of three local colleges to create a Smart Gun, by which he seems to mean one that only works when Government explicitly permits it to work.

We know a little about computers, a little about guns, and a lot about building stuff that has to work every time, like airplanes into which we place the proverbial single pink body (or whatever shad yours happens to be) for temporary safekeeping.

Jacob of NYSRPA has the details, and he and his commenters bring the snark this deserves.

Uber Official in NH Makes Excuses for Mass Murder, Blames Gun

Uber and former Administration official David Plouffe came to NH to try to forestall regulations that will cost the quasi-taxi company money. He began by saying nice things about the Uber driver who wigged out and shot a half-dozen people.

…highly rated driver and had passed a criminal background check, so unfortunately like so many of these instances we see around the country, it’s a deranged individual… and you cannot predict future behavior in that.

Shorter Plouffe: “Not our fault! Dindu nuffin.”

So what did he blame the shooting spree on?

 …this heinous gun violence…

Oh, definitely. Gun made him do it, radiating its rare eldritch waves into his ate-up head.

Just because David Plouffe knows he couldn’t be trusted with a firearm is no reason for him, and Uber, to want to take yours away.

Usage and Employment

The hardware takes you only half way.

Who Needs Lion Hunters?

The animal rights extremists got their way and pretty much closed down lion hunting in Zimbabwe, a country that didn’t have a lot else going for it. The big losers? The lions, which will now be subjected to a massacre by whatever kind of professional shots they can find in Zim today.

Conservationists estimate about half of Zimbabwe’s wildlife has disappeared since President Robert Mugabe’s seizure of white-owned land began in 2000, but Bubye [Wildlife Preserve] has held on by attracting wealthy hunters whose fees support its wildlife work.

But last year’s shooting of Cecil, in a conservancy bordering Hwange National Park, sparked a huge backlash against big-game hunting, and bolstered a U.S. plan to ban trophy hunting imports.

Result: 200 surplus lions, that the state must now pay to have killed. Meanwhile, the surplus lions are cleaning out the other wildlife, even other big cats.

Bubye’s lions are decimating populations of antelope, along with other animals such as giraffe, cheetah, leopards and wild dogs, after the driest summer on record kept grasses low and made the small game easy targets.

Urban “animal lovers” and their organizations are to wildlife as… well, we can’t think of an analogy. Who else assists the object of their love to extinction?

All We’re Gonna Say about the Travis Haley ND Video

By now, if you’re not under a rock (or chained to a hospital rotation, you guys know who you are) you’ve probably seen the video where Travis Haley pops one off during a rehearsal from one of his Pantaeo Productions videos. If not, we’ll still be here when you get back.

Turns out — here’s the inside baseball — Travis and Pantaeo didn’t renew their contract, not, we think, for anything to do with that embarrassing video. After that, some Pantaeo associate leaked the video and has been canned (per Pantaeo, in that order), and both former partners have indulged in massive whinging and sniveling that is not what we expect from either party.

We’ve all laughed at the instructor who gave himself Gluteus Gloximus and put the video up on YouTube, but that’s a lot better than what Haley and Pantaeo did by burying this video until someone leaked it, and then all the ass-covering that both sides have  indulged in afterward.

You can learn a lot from Pantaeo videos. You can learn a lot from a class with Travis Haley. We’re disappointed in the self-serving, chicken-pluckin’ behavior of both sides in this.

To the rest of us: don’t ND. If you do ND — because even very experienced, safety-conscious guys like Haley can, if they slip up — put on your grown-up face and own it. And learn from it; you couldn’t ask for a better teaching point.

Cops ‘n’ Crims

Cops bein’ cops, crims bein’ crims. The endless Tom and Jerry show of crime and (sometimes instantaneous) punishment.

Chicks Dig Jerks. But Jerks Don’t Change

This guy is not actually Prince Charming, although the girl thought he was. She was mistaken.

Tellis and Chambers

Quinton Verdell Tellis, 27, was a career criminal with many property and violent crime arrests and convictions, who had just gotten out of prison in October, 2014 when he shacked up with Jessica Chambers, 19. The relationship was a brief one — it ended when Tellis murdered Chambers on 6 December 2014 — which he did by soaking her in accelerant and setting her on fire. She lived, briefly, in the agony that goes with being burnt over 98% of your body.

Tellis also is believed to have stabbed Taiwanese exchange student Meing-Chen Hsiao, 34, to death in her Louisiana apartment on 8 August 2014.

Chicongo’s Crims Setting Murder Records

murder_trend-2016While they’ve got a long way to go to break the all-time records set in the 20th Century, Chicago criminals are on track to double last year’s box score, which was already their Third Millennium record — so far.

A number of sources have the story, pick your favorite spin:

And our favorite: HeyJackass! Time to Panic?

Meanwhile, the city has a colorful report (.pdf) trying to blame the crime in their city on Indiana’s looser gun laws. But the report refutes itself. more crime guns originate right in Chicago than in Indiana.

 In the Ongoing Soap Opera, The Perils of Kathleen

With Pennsylvania AG (and anti-gun crusader) Kathleen Kane having withdrawn from her re-election campaign to fight felony charges, Korrupt Kathleen is now facing impeachment. Her true constituency (the Democrat newsmen and editorialists of the Keystone State) have swung into action to try to spare her the strain (and, not concidentally, spare her legal defense fund the outlays):

Kane faces trial on the corruption charges this summer, but is widely expected to plead out to misdemeanors. The Democrat candidate to replace her, Josh Shapiro, is a career politician and shares her passion for anti-gun activism.

Unconventional (and current) Warfare

What goes on in the battlezones of the world — and preparation of the future battlefields.

Long Distance is the Next Best Thing to Being There

Because we’re sure the SAS trooper would have happily strangled this particular teacher, but there was a certain raffishness in the way that he interrupted the Beheading 101 class with a .338-delivered beheading of his own.

No Fair Hunting Over Bait!

The SAS had another trick up their sleeve: ISIL decoys.

The sneaky move involves dressing the soldiers up in uniform, posing them convincingly and arming them with real weapons.

ISIS scouts and local contacts take the bait and inform their allies, who then move in for the kill.

In one single incident where 12 jihadis took the bait, and were gunned down by SAS snipers.

Yes, the last sentence is missing something (or maybe has an extra “where” in there. But hey, they’re the ones who are English; we just use their language.

A Guy Can Get Killed Doing This… And So Can a Gal

Out the door of the jump plane she went — and a second later, SGT Shaina Shmigel of an engineering battalion in the 82nd Airborne was dead. What killed her? A misrouted static line (and an underweight ruck/low-weight jumper combination that this article does not mention, but that the accident report does) made her a towed jumper, and a second later she was hit by the next jumper, breaking her neck. The jumper that hit her was unhurt.

Our own observation is that the T-11 chute is having some teething problems. Not really fair to compare it to the T-10 it replaced, with which the Army has over 60 years of experience. The T-10 was rapidly developed during the Korean War when the WWII-era T-7 proved to be a killer at the high jump speeds of the new C-82 and C-119 aircraft.

Veterans’ Issues

ITEM: The Surgical Nurse was $#!+faced!

Here’s the key bit from the news story, from Wilkes-Barre, PA:

Asked during a police interview why he thought he was being questioned, 59-year-old registered nurse Richard J. Pieri allegedly answered, “I guess it has something to do with me being drunk on call,” according to The Times Leader.

He now says he forgot he was on call, got drunk at a casino, and showed up knee-walkin’, commode-huggin’ drunk to the hospital — where he assisted in surgery.

The patient has since been readmitted for complications.

Are we ready to disband this thing yet?

Lord Love a Duck!

The weird and wonderful (or creepy) that we didn’t otherwise get to.

Game Over, Man

What happens when you are so immersed in the gaming world that it is the world? Here’s a new take on an age-old science fiction dystropian trope (does that make it a dystrope?), visually gorgeous and sociologically as creepy as A Clockwork Orange. 

You do want to watch this puppy full size. Nine minute short, including titles.

Baaaas! The Train, the Traiiinnn.

If the future is dystopian, let’s bring the best of the past to new life. In Britain. where a sudden outbreak of nationalism is threatening the Brussels Eurocrats’ attempt to finally complete the task that Philip of Spain, Napoleon Bonaparte and Adolf Hitler all failed at, one of the great achievements of 20th Century British Engineering just hit the road after a long restoration. Rail road, that is:

flying-scotsman-vi_3582510kThe Flying Scotsman was the first train in England to break the 100-mph barrier (and the Brits say the first in the world, although given the speeds of early 20th-Century American rail it doesn’t seem plausible). In any event, it’s got nothing  whatsoever to do with guns, but it’s a beautiful machine, operated by a crew that grins through the soot (one of the unromantic things about steam), and lovingly documented in this photo essay. They don’t seem entirely clear on what they’re going to do with in now that they’ve restored it, but they’re Britons; they’ll press on regardless.

15 thoughts on “Friday Tour d’Horizon, 2016 Week 08

  1. John b

    “The push to develop the new technology dates to 2003, when engineers realized soldiers were experiencing problems with weapon stoppages in sand and dust environments, including in war zones in Iraq and Afghanistan, if cleaning procedures weren’t followed”

    If the cleaning procedures aren’t followed, it’s a leadership problem. Had momentary glimpses of TOCRoaches, CAB Chasers and the like at the little America’s (FOBs – with the Green Beans, etc…) who took weapons maintenance as a joke.

  2. DSM

    Does that Beretta pistol have dual extractors? Although a frame mounted safety finally, thank goodness.

    1. Jordan

      I think the top piece that looks like an extractor is actually a loaded chamber indicator that sticks up when a round is in the chamber. The Ruger SR series of pistols had an lci that worked that way as well.

  3. Jordan

    The uncanny valley short was very good. Well worth the 9 minutes (8 if you skip the end credits).

  4. Distant Thunder

    You are right about the Brit’s claim, Hognose. The first train to reach 100 MPH was the Empire State Express, pulled by Engine 999, on May 10th, 1893. The 100MPH was done in upstate New York, after which the train traveled to Chicago for that year’s Grand Columbian Exposition. When 999 was finally retired in the early 1960’s, she came back to Chicago and can now be seen in the Chicago Museum of Science and Industry. Here’s the link:

    1. DSM

      That is an awesome museum. We plan to stop there on the way to visit the family every time we pass through but then we think “Chicago” and keep on going.

  5. TDH

    Re Uber, “criminal records search” in my part of the world that only gives you a record of convictions. Usually the search won’t even tell you the offence, only criminal record yes or no and that depends on the clerk doing the search and what informaton they are allowed to release and to whom, privacy FOI and all that.
    Its not enough to determine someones risk to the public, you need a complete “police records search” convicitons, charges, any related police occurance reports, and follow up by someone with some investigative experience.
    Other things to consider, how often are they done? is it a one time thing, because if it is it won’t catch any future offences, who is monitoring the drivers, in UBER’s case its 20 something IT people. Easier and cheaper to blame the guns.

  6. Raoul Duke

    Ref the rifle left on the rooftop, it could be worse. Here’s what happened in a similar case, where the abandoned rifle met with an 18-wheeler:

    1. Hognose Post author

      The big truck always wins, in any game of your kE versus my kE. I lost a 1964 1/2 Mustang hood from a truck when it broke its ropes and went flying. A dozen cars swerved around it while I waited for a traffic break to retrieve it, and along came an 18-wheeler. Big trucks don’t do “swerve” and afterward it was difficult to peel the scrap steel that was formerly a rare hood from the pavement of I-95.

        1. Hognose Post author

          There’s a reason that the .mil uses a lot more Aimpoints and ACOGs than EOTechs and Elcans. Durable stuff, if not entirely Ranger proof.

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