Good People With Firearms #7: Constitutional Carry, Stillwater Police Dept PSA

The Second Amendment already guarantees the right to be armed whenever, wherever.  However unfortunate in these days of anti civil rights gun control zombies a public service announcement is a necessity.  All American citizens, police departments and serving officers need to understand and abide by what is presented by the Stillwater Police Department.  To those with an irrational fear of firearms or the desire to take away another human beings self defense capabilities, start here you need it.

What you need to know about the new Constitutional Carry Law

Unconditional freedom, no compromises, no negotiations. -13

Worm bin notes: Update 24, All is well!

Bins 2 & 3, Update 24.  All is well in the bins.  Ambient temperature of 86°F, 70% humidity, bin temperature 82.5°F.  The bin temp is a little higher than I’d like but there is no where else to keep them.  No foul odors.  Nothing out of the ordinary.  There were few or no spiders.  That makes me think there has been a lizard or two dropping by for a few snacks.

I’ve noticed but keep forgetting to mention, the other two insects usually seen in abundance in the bins are hardly visible.  I think the continuous air flow and drying of the surface has had an effect on them.  Next time I check the bins I’ll add more moisture and possibly add more cardboard in an effort to keep the moisture level higher.  Maybe the other insects will flourish again.

Since there isn’t much potato on the potato skins I’ve started adding them back into the bins to simulate leaf litter.  I’m also hoping the addition of moisture will keep them from drying out creating a more natural type environment for the worms.  I’d like to see more activity at the surface again.  Stopped using the fan since there has been small patches of moisture and discoloration on the floor next to it.  It’s “winter” here in Florida so the ambient temps should be more mild.  We’ll see! -13

Good People With Firearms #6: 24 Hours in South Florida

None of these incidents involve the use of a firearm for self defense.  They simply demonstrate what it’s like to live or visit here and why many of us choose to carry a firearm for self defense.

24 Hours in South Florida.  Why do over 2 million citizens of Florida have a concealed weapons permit?

SW Dade Man Carjacked At Gun Point By Two Masked Subjects

Cutler Bay Man Ambushed, Killed In Home Invasion

Elderly Man Robbed, Injured After Being Dragged On Suspect’s Vehicle At Bank Parking Lot

Unconditional freedom, no compromises, no negotiations. -13

Good People With Firearms #5 Pregnant mother defends home with AR-15, one dead

Family’s mother, 8 months pregnant uses AR-15 to drive out home invaders.  “…He made it from my back door to roughly 200 feet out in the front ditch before the AR did its thing.”

Florida Woman Uses AR-15 To Defend Family During Home Invasion

Victim of Violent Home Invasion Speaks; Credits Wife With Saving His Life With AR-15

Pregnant mom uses AR-15 to kill burglar, defend family during home invasion

Pregnant woman shoots and kills intruder with AR-15 during home invasion in Florida

A Florida man says his pregnant wife saved his life in home invasion – with an AR-15

Unconditional freedom, no compromises, no negotiations. -13

Good People With Firearms #4 Armed roommate stops home invasion

Armed roommate shoots one of two home invaders.  Why we won’t negotiate or compromise the U.S. Second Amendment.  Anyone suggesting it or advocating for it belongs in Guantanamo prison.

“She was collected enough to keep us all from getting hurt,” the woman’s roommate said. “You know that’s really what I’m thankful for, is that not everybody is ready to jump under stress.”

Florida, Pinellas County  Woman shoots intruder during early morning home invasion

Unconditional freedom, no compromises, no negotiations. -13

The Florida Range Experience: Okeechobee Shooting Sports

The Florida Range Experience is a new project here on my blog.  I’m going to share my experience with the various shooting ranges I go to here in the state of Florida.  Most of the experiences will be here in the Broward and Miami-Dade county areas.  Some will be in the surrounding counties.

The need to sight in a couple of rifles led me to search for a range.  I wanted a range that I could set up my shooting rest and tools without interference.  There is an outdoor rifle range run by the county but the online reviews left me thinking I should go somewhere else.  More on that range in another blog.  During the online search I found Okeechobee Shooting Sports.

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The range is two hours drive from home.  After seeing the range’s website the distance didn’t matter, I wanted to go there to check it out.  They have various ranges to suit anyone’s needs.  The “Unlimited Rifle” range where a shooter can shoot in the “seated, prone, kneeling, standing” positions.  The “Gallery” where pistol shooters can practice drawing from a holster and rifle shooters can rapid or automatic fire if they want.  There are “Private” ranges that can be used in various ways.  Cost for each range varies.

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Shooters Cafe with shaded seating area

Then there is the “Pistol & Rifle” range.  The pistol range has a usable distance from 5 – 50 yards.  The rifle range has four marked distances, 25, 50, 100 and 200 yards.  It cost $15.00 for the day.  They also have an onsite gunsmith, a cafe, firearm rentals, memberships, and training.  Range hours of operation for non-members is Thursday – Sunday, 10am – 5pm.

 

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Pro Shop, Gunsmith and eating area(right)

Here’s my experience.  After viewing the website I filled out and signed the required waiver online.  That makes checking a quick process.  Don’t forget to watch the safety video before you go.  When I arrived I went to the Pro Shop, told the clerk my name and within a minute and a half I was paid up and ready for the range.  Checking in was super easy.

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The 24 lane rifle range was well run.  George the RSO(Range Safety Officer) was the kind of range safety we all want watching over us.  He’s not the overbearing mother hen type he’s an easy to get along with, very nice guy.  He will make sure you know how the range is operated and hold you to it without all the fanfare.  Hope he’s there the next time I go.

There are 15 minute shooting time blocks controlled by an automated system that announces when to stop firing and prepare for target changes.  The RSO will insure all procedures are followed before allowing anyone down range.  Once the target changes are made shooters are given the all clear and allowed to proceed with shooting.  The procedures are more detailed that was the short version.

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Rifle lane

Each lane is equipped with a shooting rest, and two seats.  The early bird gets to use the spotting scopes on a table in front of the RSO station.  The target system is a pleasure to use.  Targets are stapled onto a system where cardboard is attached to wood supports that are attached to a metal base.  Staplers are provided.  Target removal or set up is very easy.  There are also concrete markers for each lane to help the shooter line it up with the shooting position.

There were maybe about ten other shooters on the rifle range.  They seemed equally divided by task.  Some were sighting or checking zero on hunting rifles, others were doing the same thing with AR15’s or similar.  Something to note about the lanes.  The divider between lanes is hardware fabric.  It will keep others brass out of your shirt but will not protect you from muzzle break discharge.

Visible in the rifle lane photo on the right is the muzzle break that gave me a strong blast every time the shooter next to me fired.  I’m not complaining, just making note so you’re not surprised.  I enjoyed the blast it helped me focus more on the task at hand and was a welcome test of my ability to ignore things that don’t matter.

Things that matter to me is staff attitude, how the range it operated and cleanliness.  All the staff were friendly.  The range was operated well, range participants know what to expect and what is expected of them.  The range was clean and well maintained.  My first experience at Okeechobee Shooting Sports was good.  I plan on going back to shoot on the other ranges in the future.  If you get a chance to go check them out I think you’ll have a good time there.  -13

The Florida Range Experience: A new project for my blog

The Florida Range Experience is a new project here on my blog.  I’m going to share my experience with the various shooting ranges I go to here in the state of Florida.  Most of the experiences will be here in the Broward and Miami-Dade county areas.  Some will be in the surrounding counties.

I’m not going to use a rating system there are too many variables.  I will make my opinion clear by stating whether I’ll go back for more or never return again.  All the reasons that form those opinions will be written here in this blog.

I’ll be basing my opinion on my overall experience and the other things that matter too me.  Such as how are the range staff?  Are they aloof, bullies, mother hens, know it all’s?  Or are they courteous, knowledgeable, helpful, easy to get along with?

How well the range is operated.  Does the range have standard operating procedures or is it a free-for-all?  Is there brass everywhere creating a trip hazard or are shooters and staff expected to keep the range lanes clean?  Condition of the restrooms.

Those are a few of the things I’ll be looking at when visiting the range.  I’m hoping that others like me want to know what a range is like before deciding to go there.  I want the information in the blog to be useful.  -13

 

 

Intrinsically Safe Helmet Headlamp – Nightstick XPP-5462RX

Over the last few years I’ve been looking for a more suitable headlamp for my helmets.  The headlamps sold for hiking or other activities aren’t durable enough nor do they have the safety features I wanted.  I finally found a light that would meet all my needs.

The headlamp I chose is the Dicata Nightstick XPP-5462RX.  The light is designed to be worn on a firefighting helmet or hardhat.  It has a low profile so that it can be used with shield equipped helmets so that it won’t interfere with the shield.  I may want to change the light from my Phenix First Due helmet over to a firefighting helmet with a shield if the situation calls for it and not worry whether I’ll have an issue.

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From product instructions

It is intrinsically safe in various hazardous environments reducing the risk of a spark causing an explosion.  The intrinsically safe rating calls for the use of three Energizer AA batteries E91 or EN91 only.  According to the manual those are the only batteries it has been tested with.  The light also meets NFPA-1971-8.6(2013).  The light is waterproof down to 1 meter.  It also has a drop rating of 2 meters.

The headlamp is held onto the helmet by a heavy duty rubber strap.  The strap has two clips that hold the power cord in place.  It feels like it will last for several years if not damaged during use.  The battery pack and lamp housing are made from glass filled nylon polymer and appear the be very durable.  The company says it comes in two colors green which looks lime-yellow to me and red which looks very much orange on my helmet.

TILT

Lamp in tilted position

The lamp is connected to a stainless steel frame with an adjustable hinge.  The angle of the light can be changed if desired.  I found that setting the light to the most advantageous viewing angle then tightening the bolt/nut down so it won’t move works best for me.  Before I did this whenever I turned on the light it would move back to the original position so that I always had to readjust after changing the settings.

LIGHT ON

Light with spot turned on high power

The light uses Cree L.E.D.’s that are rated to a 50,000+ hour lifespan.  The spot light is on the users right with the flood on the left.  There is a separate control button for each light.  The control button sequence for both lights is first press high power, second push low power and third push light off.  Both lights can be on at the same time in the high or low power setting.

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The spot light in high power is 275 lumens with a run time of 6 hours 45 minutes reaching 120 meters.  Low power is 100 lumens with a run time of 25 hours reaching 75 meters.  The flood light in high power is 250 lumens with a run time of 7 hours.  In low power 100 lumens with a run time of 25 hours.  When the spot and flood lights operate simultaneously they put out 310 lumens with a run time of 6 hours reaching 86 meters.

REAR LIGHT

Rear facing green “follow me” light

The battery pack also has rear facing “follow me” light.  The green L.E.D. light is very bright and easy to see.  The control button on the housing allows the user to turn the light to steady on with the first push.  The second push will make the light flash at regular intervals and the third push will turn the light off.

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Replacement strap

In the future more of these headlamps will be added to the other helmets used for rescue activities.  I also plan on having spare straps on hand if we need them.  After using this light I’m very happy with the performance.  Check out the video if you want to see how the light works.  -13

That time I brought a shotgun to school and nobody cared.

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

I was determined and prepared that day to do what I had to do.  Nothing was going to stop me from getting a shotgun from the family armory and take it to school.  I placed a 20 gauge in the carry case and box of shells in a leather bag my dad used at the range, my dad supervising.  My plan?  Impress my instructor and pass the state sponsored hunter safety course held at our junior high school.  Participating students were instructed to bring a firearm with them to demonstrate safety skills taught in the class.

All children should be taught basic firearms skills and the importance and meaning of the Second Amendment.  Not that firearms should be feared.  Fear is not a natural reaction, fear of firearms is instilled by those with an agenda.  I brought a firearm to school and nobody cared.  -13

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Dash Cam: Camera tampered with during vehicle maintenance.

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On 18 Octobrer 2019 our 4Runner was taken to Toyota Hollywood for maintenance. Before the vehicle left for the day I did what I do every day or two. Change out the SD card, clean the lens and check the position of the camera view. Everything was like it was supposed to be with a good camera view. When the 4Runner returned I started to change the SD card and noticed the camera was pointing in an upward direction.

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Before camera is moved.

That’s odd I thought because for the camera to be moved into that position it would have to be forced that way.  The mechanism that controls the vertical view of the camera has a knob that is tightened by hand. It also has indexing teeth so that the camera will stay in position once adjusted.

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After camera is moved.

That then made me suspicious since the vehicle had maintenance that day.  I loaded the footage on my computer.  I was not surprised to see footage of the camera being manipulated. Someone started to move the 4Runner then slowed down as the camera was moved. The slow motion video demonstrates the indexing I was referring to.  The clicks are visible in the footage. Adjusting the rear view mirror does not interfere with the camera.

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The employee cannot claim it was bumped by a hand. I included a demonstration of how difficult it is to move the camera in the video I put together about what happened.  So why would an employee of Toyota Hollywood be manipulating the camera without permission?  Does the employee have something to hide.  Does Toyota Hollywood?  The camera is not a Toyota part.  We put the camera in for our protection. They don’t have the authority to touch that camera or any other personal item.  This makes me very suspicious of what is going on in their garage.

There is a guy that keeps showing up in the footage who is the one performing the maintenance.  I’m not accusing the guy but do wonder if it was he who moved that camera.  Whoever it was I want to make sure that person never has access to any of our vehicles again.  The only person that could have moved the camera was the one who was driving it at the time.

I made a video record of the event that includes all the recordings from the time the 4Runner arrived at Toyota Hollywood to the time the person performing the work parked it outside.  Nearly all of the footage playback speeds have been changed to move though the timeline faster.  I included footage of me manipulating the camera angle and some slow motion to see movement detail.

For now all we can to is let the management know what happened so the issue can be addressed.  I’m posting this video so the management can see the actions that bring us concern.  As well as letting people know what took place there. We are shocked and disappointed this happened.

We want to know who did it so we can assure that person never accesses our vehicles again.  That camera is set to turn off after the engine stops. In the future when maintenance is performed the camera will be set to continuously record once it arrives at the garage.  Video is below. -13

 

Booster Bath Tub and Petsafe Ramp Product Experience & Modifications

Bathing dogs is a necessity.  That doggy pond water smell isn’t welcome here, it’s too much.  It’s always been a strain on my lower back bending over to give our dog a good scrubbing.  I looked at various tubs but didn’t like them for several reasons.  Some were at ground level requiring me to bend over, while elevated tubs were fully enclosed requiring me to lift the dog over the rim.  I did find a tub that had an opening that a dog could walk into.

The Booster Bath large elevated tub is configured so that steps could be attached at the opening.  It looks good but the steps didn’t look as if it would work very well.  There were 3 steps that would be difficult for a larger dog to navigate.  My dog would jump off them.  I decided to go with a ramp that I would modify to attach to the tub.

I like the tub itself but do not like the leg design.  The way the legs are designed they want to push out and away from the tub.  The tendon part of the leg wants to come out of the slots.  The first time I used the tub my dog jumped out just as one of the legs pulled out.  I replaced the leg then continued with bathing.  My dog wants to sit down in the middle of the tub.  This pushes down making the legs move outward as I’m scrubbing the dog.

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While the dog was sitting in the tub I looked at the underside and noticed a gap at the connection point.  I thought if I don’t support the tub the legs would pull out and the tub would collapse with the dog in it.  It first I wasn’t sure what might work then remembered I had a shower chair/bench in storage.  I took off the back and arm rest adjusted the height to fit.  It worked the chair fit perfectly without interference.

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Now when the dog is washed the tub is very stable.   Our dog is relaxed, calm and seems to enjoy the bath.  I’m not the only one who has had issue with the legs.  There are many customer reviews on Amazon reporting the same problems.

To get the dog into the tub I went with the Petsafe folding ramp.  I liked that it is lightweight, folding and fits into the tub when finished.  It had a semi flat area that would allow me to attach it to the tub with clevis pins.  Drill a few holes, push the pins in and done.

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When I used the ramp the first time as the dog reached the hinge the tub began to tilt backward from the dogs weight.  I attached the front of the tub to the ground with a strap the had the dog walk up.  The ramp was very shaky as well as flexed as the dog passed over the hinge.  It looked like there was a lot of pressure being placed over the hinge portion.  To counteract the forces I put a concrete block and some wood under the hinge.  That eliminated the flexing and made the ramp much more stable.

I knew the block and wood was temporary.  It was a hassle that looked like an eyesore.  I looked at many options and didn’t like any of them.  One day while checking out a Harbor Freight mailing it dawned on me that 3 ton jack stands might work.  I purchased a pair and they fit perfectly without any adjustments.  All I did was all some nonslip matting.  Now that ramp is very sable.

jack stands

The other issue I was having getting the dog up the ramp was that she would jump off.  I couldn’t understand why.  I thought it might be how the darker colored ramp is perceived.  Maybe it looks like the slots in a cattle guard to her.  A shadow that she can’t see well or at all.  After adding some light color towels I was able to walk her up with no problems.

Seems like the ramp does have an issue near the hinge.  After my experience I went though every one of the one star reviews at Amazon.  I noticed a pattern where the ramp broke at the hinge.  After viewing several photographs from customers it was plain to see a consistent in the breaks.  The all looked nearly identical.  I think there is a flaw in the design or plastic.

My opinion of the tub and ramp is that if I wasn’t able to add the chair and jack stands I would not use them again for fear of them collapsing.  Anyone who has either of them currently may want to look into the solutions I’ve had success with.  Anyone considering purchasing them should also factor in the additional cost of the supports.  Since I’ve had success with the solutions I’ll keep using the ramp/tub combination with confidence.  The video has all the details.  -13

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ground anchor tent stake driver socket

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Living in Florida we’re prepared for living in tents for various reasons.  There’s camping for pleasure.  We may have to evacuate to another location for protection from a hurricane.  Most of the time we stay on the homestead when a hurricane is predicted to strike our area.  Our home could become so damaged that we may have to camp in the back yard until it is repaired.  We have soft soil, high winds and hard rain storms to content with.

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Failed tent stake experiment.

Setting up camp in sandy terrain requires the right stake.  If hard ground stakes are used they’ll pull out as soon as force is put on a tent or what ever structure needs to be anchored.  I had considered the MSR ToughStake but the cost was prohibitive since we need 35-40.  They wanted over $30.00 for two of the larger size stakes.  I tried to make something similar with what was sold as stakes that worked in the sand but it didn’t work.  If I used them they would have to be buried.  That’s more than I want to do when pitching or rolling up camp.

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Preferred sand stake, 3/8″ x 15″ ground anchor

I ended up getting 3/8″ x 15″ auger type ground anchors that screw into the sand.  This size is perfect for setting up the average camping tent.  I’ve used larger ones in the past to hold down sheds and temporary tarp structures.  They worked very good.  The only issue is getting them into the ground or removing them.  After watching a video on YouTube I decided to try to modify a couple of impact sockets.

BOTH SOCKETS

32mm & 27mm 1/2″ drive deep impact sockets

I wasn’t sure how the experiment was going to go so I used 20% off coupons to buy the sockets from Harbor Freight.  I decided on impact sockets that way they could be used with any manual, pneumatic, cordless or electric driver available.  First was the 32mm to see if I could do it then the 27mm.  I thought the 27 mm might work as well or better plus I’d have a back up in case one or the other was lost or damaged.

 

I used a cutting and grinding wheel on an angle grinder to remove the material creating enough space for the ground anchor eyelet to fit though.  The grinding work isn’t pretty but it works.  Now we have two sockets that will drive those ground anchors into the sand.  I ordered the ground anchors from a couple of suppliers and they each had different size eyelets.  The drivers accommodate both sizes.  Really glad that video was on YouTube.  Pitching and rolling up camp will be much easier now.

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Video link is below if you want to see the how it turned out.  -13