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Letters to the Editor and Feedback

Battle Rifle Feedback

Editor's Choice?

rating = excellent
general comments = Of all the weaponry discussed what TWO would the editor purchase and equip for the haul???


I'm glad you liked the article. I'll pass that on to Columba.

My choices... Hmm. My personal choices would be M1A/M14 (condemned reliable, and the ergonomics actually suit me) and FAL (also reliable). It's easier for me to say that I would not want any AR-15 variant for real field/combat use; they're wonderfully accurate, but that accuracy comes at the expense of reliabilty due to tight tolerances that won't tolerate any degree of fouling or dirt. Ask yourself why any gun needs a forward assist handle to deal with ordinary usage.

Your mileage may vary. Pick what suits you and your own tactical situation. I strongly recommend that you read Boston T. Party's Boston's Gun Bible.

PRC Legal?

rating = good
general comments = Are ANY of these rifles available and LEGAL in the Peoples Republic of Kalifornia? What are Prices like? Where are the best places to buy them?
Thanks for the GREAT article!

Hard to say; sometimes it seems like the PRC can ban 'em faster than the manufacturers can turn them out. I think the VPR would be legal. Pretty much everything else is a "evil, wicked, assault weapon". Buy from a private individual and don't report yourself to the State


My comments on "Choosing your battle rifle".

What is & why a battle rifle - Agree with the reasons stated.

Cartridge - All good choices. Agree that 7.62x51 is the logical choice for folks living in the US.

Action - Don't think semi-auto is the obvious best choice; I think more emphasis on bolt action may be beneficial. The Tommy who fired 38 aimed shots is (sic) 60 seconds with the Enfield worked the bolt action while the rifle was in recoil; a semi-auto won't do much better than that, as the rifleman still has to ride the recoil to get the sights back on target. Manipulating the bolt that quickly is a skill, to be sure, but one that can be gained by dry firing practice. Besides, the scenario I see is an individual operating in a shoot & scoot MO. Quoting: "Because as private individuals, we have no backup to resort to." If I am without backup, I most assuredly do not want to fire a large number of rounds from the same position; this gives away my position and makes me a target. I want to hit and run. A bolt action will probably be lighter than a semi-auto, more robust, and more ergonomic.

Magazine - For reasons expressed above, I don't think large capacity magazines are necessary for shoot & scoot tactics.

Reliability - Right on.

Ergonomics - Right, and this is another reason for small magazines. An M-1 Garand is more ergonomic than any of the other semi-automatic battle rifles listed because it doesn't have the 20 round box sticking out of the bottom. This is important when crawling or shooting from prone.

Accuracy - Right. Optical sights may be considered for longer range or low light. Finding optics with the requisite ruggedness for battle rifle use is not a trivial exercise. This could be an article in itself.

Overall, this is a good article. If the emphasis is on militia action or resisting an assault by multiple orcs at close range, then the semi-auto rifle is a good choice. For an individual on his own, it may not be the best choice.



timers rating = poor
general comments = You can eject an M1 Garand clip without emptying the clip. Along the left side of the bolt is a lever that, once you lock back the bolt, will eject any loaded clip. You also can partially load a Garand clip, it just isn't easy. NRA match shooting uses a two-shot clip, specially made. One match shooter showed me how to accomplish this with a standard clip.

God? ("Simulator" Feedback)

rating = good
general comments = The word God is spelled with a capital G, espec. when used in the vocative case without an article. Doing otherwise is a gratuitious slap in the face for many who would otherwise be among your strongest fans.

Science fiction is driven by fanatical author loyalty. No need to turn off potential fans, supporters, buyers, and recommenders of the material, is there?


(Taking off my editor's funny hat and putting on my author's propeller beanie)

You consider it a "gratuitious slap in the face" that my characters fail to take your specific deity's name in vain?


"God", when used as a proper name by a believer in reference to a single specific entity, would be capitalized. As my characters used it, none of those conditions apply. What would be improper would be for my characters to use a generic term in a fashion in which they don't believe. Some faiths hold that the word "g-d" should not be used at all. Others use lowercase because they believe in multiple deities. Perhaps others would prefer "Allah". If this complaint were coming from someone who had paid for the story (it isn't), I might give it more credence. I don't want fanatical followers; I prefer loyal readers who understand that freedom is just a little more than the "freedom" to think and believe exactly as do they.

One of my favorite SF authors is a man whose house I occasionally drop by. Where I occasionally critique his work. And occasionally he pokes a little fun at me (check out L.Neil Smith's The American Zone, page 158 I believe.) in turn. And we all have fun. Neither he nor I demand that the other always agree with the other 100%. We don't sweat the small stuff.

(Author's beanie off, editor's pith helmet on)

Neither DF! nor Mr. Bussjaeger had any intention of offending people with this particular story. We are, in fact, surprised that people bound by a common desire for real freedom could allow themselves to be sidetracked by a (non)issue so small. He merely used a word in a manner common in 20th and 21st century America. Mr. Bussjaeger has expressed a willingness to send us a short story or two that darned well may offend a couple of people, though, so they'll recognize the real thing when they see it. But since intentionally offending our allies isn't what DF! is all about, we'll probably pass on those.

Joe Six-Pack 13 Feedback

rating = bad
general comments = The point this cartoon makes is made at such a first grade level. Couldn't the same point be made with more intelligence? Enough at least that some one could form the basis of a solid arguement with which to debate the right to bear arms?


As the name of the cartoon was intended to suggest, this strip is meant to couch ideas in terms that even the lowest common denominator - couch potatoes totally uninterested in freedom - can get.

I happen to be an ex-cop. Convicted felons have told me that they like gun control for exactly the reason put forth in that cartoon; and they typically expressed themselves far more simplistically than does Joe Six-Pack's creator.

Kiss This! Feedback

rating = bad
general comments = You Really Are SICK

Gee, I rather liked that myself; nice anatomy. What exactly do you find "sick" about beauty?

Blowgun Feedback

rating = poor
general comments = like some things to make a good blowgun (like a recipe). thank you and some things that you could use for the cone part on the rear of a dart. email me for the answers to this thank you again (address blanked)

i'm trying to take out this damn squirrel

We've lost touch with Locked, but for a really basic blowgun, try half inch PVC pipe. Darts could be made from heavy coat hanger wire. Use epoxy to attach a cone made from paper.


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