Tuesday, February 16, 2016


Today was an off day...  To be specific, our electricity was off all day.

This morning at about 5AM, a powerful squall line went through, and a nearby lightning strike took out our power.  It wasn't restored until just about 6 PM, so 13 hours.  On one hand, it's really inconvenient to live without power.  On the other hand, if we're supposed to be ready to deal with anything at a moment's notice, it's a good excuse to drill with all of our preparations.  We decided to deal with the day without our backup generator.  We have a natural gas stove that can be lit manually if the electricity is out, so we were able to heat water for coffee or tea, and cook on the stove top (although we didn't).  Thankfully, the weather was comfortable for the rest of the day, and it wasn't too hot or cold for comfort.

I took the time to totally rearrange two of our 7' bookshelves, and straighten up a lot near my computer.  The books I used to have in my office now have a home just out of reach to my left.  This area is close enough to some windows that there was enough light so that I could work until just about the time the power came on.   

So since I haven't had the time to put together any content, have a Photo of the Day, from The Firearms Blog:
A place called Nelson Precision Manufacturing (Facebook warning) is making these miniature scale AR lowers, calling them AR.5, and selling them as bottle openers or key chain fobs.  The TFB pages has a photo of one of these next to a full size AR15 lower, and I'd guess it's around quarter scale.    Before you ask, they are not fully finished and so are not firearms.  There's no fire control pocket or magwell, so they're under 80%. 

EDITED TO ADD:  This is post number 2000 of this blog.  Yay me!


  1. YMMV with Florida Flicker and Flash. I live a mile north of their Indian River plant, and my block was without power for 7 days after one of the storms went through in 2005. My neighbors across the street were out for 10 days after the next storm hit. A couple of weeks ago, I lost power 4 times in one week. The first three times they "fixed" it in about an hour. The fourth time took them about 6 hours to replace the transformer.

    Then again, we do not have any "important" people living in our neighborhood, so the response times are what they are...

    1. We have two advantages here. First, we have underground utilities which helps isolate from lightning strikes - it spreads out and reduces the pulse. Second, I think we're on the same branch as the fire department substation within a half mile.

      After the hurricanes back in '04, Frances knocked our power out from about 4 AM until about 9 PM. Same day! The second storm also knocked power out around 4 AM, but it was out until 9PM the next day, so about 40 hours. In both cases, the branch I'm on got restored before my neighbors a block over who were unaffected by this outage. I think it was 48 hours more without power for houses I can see from my yard.

      Nothing but pure luck. We picked the location for good drainage after the rains, and had no idea the power would be good!

  2. It would be neat to make a mini AR sized for 22 LR or other very small cartridge, like the 22 Tippmann machine guns that replicate the 1919. How hard would it be to machine those bottle openers into a working receiver (and scale the rest of the weapon too)?

    1. A guy I know worked on scaling down screws for his models to get them to look better and found everything changes (also the first guy on Earth to make a .009"x 354 TPI screw). My guess is that scaling everything would be the hardest part. I don't think you just scale every aspect of an AR down to 25% and end up with anything usable. Once you know the size of everything in the fire control pocket, you know how much metal to take out.