The Dot of Death
What a day I had.
For weeks, I have been trying to get to an outdoor gun range to test a pet theory. I thought it would be clever to put a laser on an AK47 pistol and put it in my truck, but I didn’t want to fool with it until I knew how well it worked in practice. To find out, I needed to shoot a similar weapon without using the buttstock. An AK pistol is really a shortened rifle with no buttstock, so I knew that if I could control a rifle, I would be able to control a pistol.
I made it to the range today, and because my last safety class was so long ago, I had to take a 20-minute refresher. That wouldn’t have been so bad, but they didn’t hold the class until an hour after I got there. Then I got ready to go in, and a static electricity alarm went off and shut the range down.
I know you have no idea what I’m talking about. It’s new to me, too. They have a machine that detects static electricity, and when it gets nervous, it sounds a horrible siren. That means there is a risk of lightning, so you have to stop shooting. Because…I guess it’s better to be struck by lightning when you’re not shooting.
We waited maybe 45 minutes for the machine to calm down. During that time, it rained like crazy. I wanted to leave, but after the half-hour drive to the range, the wait for the course, and the course itself, I just couldn’t. I refuse to shoot on weekends because it’s like a buffalo stampede, so my next opportunity would have been Wednesday. Forget that.
Eventually the machine reconciled itself with its inner child, and we were allowed to shoot. I managed to get 25 rounds off before the machine wet its pants again. I used my Vz 58, which shoots the same ammunition as an AK47. It’s a carbine with a folding stock, so it’s nearly the same thing as a pistol. In fact, you can buy a pistol version. They cut a few inches off the barrel and remove the stock.
I was not allowed to shoot with the stock folded, but that didn’t matter. I held the gun away from my body, so the stock didn’t come into play. Same thing. I did not use the sights. Without any effort at all, I got 3″ groups at 75 feet. I shot one group using the sights, and I was amazed. I was just playing around, but four bullets went through one hole, and the fifth was a nearby flier. This is an incredibly easy gun to shoot.
The recoil was pathetic. Not worth discussing. The green laser was clearly visible. The weather was a little overcast, but I think that even on a bright day, you’d have to be blind to miss it at distances under 50 feet.
I wasn’t allowed to shoot rapid-fire, but I managed to shoot rounds a couple of seconds apart, and I had no problem finding the aim point after the first shot.
The accuracy is probably better than my test indicates, because I had problems with the laser mount slipping.
Here’s the target. I realize the holes are all over the place, but that’s because I used different aim points to distinguish the groups.
If a burgler was in my house, even if the groups opened up by a factor of four, I’d still be within a circle about 10″ across. That’s at 75 feet. Who shoots people 75 feet away in self-defense? It’s pretty rare. At realistic distances of fifty feet or less, I’d be the Angel of Death himself.
I really don’t understand why gun people are so afraid to admit the mindblowing awesomeness of lasers. A lot of gun nuts hate to hear people say things like this, but it’s true: the bullets go wherever you put the dot. It’s just that easy. No sighting required.
If the laser craps out, you still have a gun with a nice long sight radius (helpful even when point shooting), plus 30 rounds of hellacious ammunition no handgun can come close to matching. What’s not to love?
Now I know lasers and 7.62 rounds work. The only question is whether I should go to a pistol or stick with a folding rifle. The pistol would need a flash hider, adding about two inches to the barrel. I think the whole thing would come in at about 22″. The rifle is 26″ long, folded. Still compact.
An AK pistol would be a lot cheaper than a Vz 58 folder, so if it got stolen, I would cry less.
I know people moan a lot about the risks of overpenetration with a rifle, but that’s silly. The vast majority of pistol shots miss the mark entirely, which is infinitely worse than overpenetrating. Rifles are much more accurate. It’s probably better to hit a criminal and then deal with a slight risk that someone behind him will be struck by the slowed-down round than it is to miss and have someone hit with a pistol round traveling at full speed. And if you miss with the pistol, you still have a criminal coming at you or a loved one.
The laser mount needs to be tightened, but I don’t think there will be any movement, once I hit it with an Allen wrench. The groups will probably tighten up once it’s secure.
I’m sold on this thing. It’s nice when a plan works out.Stumble it! Save This Page