My Ruger SR40 came in last weekend, but because of some big gun shows that were going on down in Richmond, the state police had a huge backlog. As usual when Mrs. Paco and I head down to Virginia Arms in Manassas, we made a day of it, going to the local mall and doing some shopping, having lunch, gassing up the venerable Suburban. When we returned to the store, however, we found, to our dismay, that the paperwork was still in the queue. This gave me even more time to look around, and frankly I'm glad it worked out that way. I had been thinking about making a future purchase of a Mossberg J.I.C. pump-action, but pump-actions, in the hands of the unknowledgeable (or the unwary), can be tricky things, plus there's a certain amount of take-down required when you clean the things. So, while Mrs. Paco engaged one of the employees in conversation ("What's that thingy on the end of the rifle that looks a little like a potato-peeler?") I wandered around the store, perusing the inventory, and I found what, for me, is a perfectly acceptable alternative to a pump-action: a Stoeger coach gun. Manufactured in Brazil, it is a short, double-barreled 12 ga., with an attractive walnut stock and extra-wide fore-grip. The background check never did get done last Saturday, but it was completed early this past week and we went back yesterday and picked the guns up.
Here's the Ruger SR40: a .40 caliber semi-automatic pistol that comes with two 15-round magazines. Regular readers will know (or suspect) that my knowledge of the high and ghostly science of gun technology is very limited, which has always predisposed me in favor of the ease and simplicity of revolvers. But the recent clamoring by some of the usual gun-control crowd for a 10-round magazine limit, although not likely to get traction, induced me to get a high-capacity pistol - just in case. I like Ruger, for both quality and price, and I think this one is going to work out nicely (don't forget to click to enlarge).
When I got the Stoeger home, I was somewhat alarmed, upon opening the box, to find that it had been broken down: barrels and fore-grip over here, stock and action over there. Fortunately, the instructions for reassembly were clear, and the process was simple and straightforward. It's a solid, tight little weapon.