Sunday, February 04, 2007

Tactical Cowboy Gun

A few days ago I posted on the "tactical" lever gun. While some people seem to think that they'll need their 30-round, evil black rifles to fend off home invaders, there seems to be a good argument for the use of a pistol calibre lever gun in its place- short, light, easy handling and with sufficient knock-down power (.38, .357, .44 or .45) without the risk of overpenetrating. And we all know how the AR can put a bullet through someone without actually taking them out of the fight.

One of the drawbacks to the lever gun is the inability for most to work the action while prone (although the chances are you won't be prone if you're tackling a goblin in your home). I've been thinking about it and while the lever gun is certainly more than adequate, there is another alternative- and it's a cowboy gun too. I'm talking about the Lightning rifle. Originally a Colt design, there are a number of reproductions on the market at the moment. The Lightning (or Taurus Thunderbolt for example) has several things going for it as a tactical rifle- 14 round capacity in the manly calibres of .45 Colt or .357 Magnum, a short stroke pump action (if you're familiar with a shotgun, bingo!), and the design allows for slam fires- hold the trigger down and pump the action and the gun fires as fast as you can rack it. Which is pretty fast. Michael Bane did a review of the Taurus back in 2005. If you can't get the job done with 14 rounds of .45 Colt or .357 Magnum there's something seriously wrong. And you can always have a back up revolver in the same calibre should the need arise. What's not to like about a home defence package like that?

So, there we have it- a faster shooting gun than a shotgun with less recoil and twice the capacity of most. Add in some old-time looks which shouldn't scare the hoplophobes too much and you have a pretty great "tactical" rifle. And at $500 it's a heck of a lot cheaper than an AR.

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