Thursday, March 16, 2006

Rock Island Love Fest

Yesterday was my first day at the range with my new Rock Island and I have to say I was impressed. I will admit that the gun never made it to first base before I changed something. The grips were swapped out for standard Government Issue Colt grips before we ever left for the range. It was a perfect day with the temperature somewhere in the low 50’s and bright sunshine.

I started with basic 230 grain FMJ rounds from 21 feet. On the seventh (7) round the slide failed to go completely forward. I corrected this with a little tap and finished the magazine. All 8 rounds were within an inch. They would have been in the same hole if not for operator error.

I put 5 full magazines through the gun from 21 feet, 4 from 45 feet, and 2 from 75 feet. On my eleventh magazine I had a second incident of the gun failing to go into battery, and on the last round of the magazine failed to feed by coming into the barrel at a very acute angle. These were the only malfunctions for the day.

I fired for accuracy and function. I fired slow and controlled as well as dumping the magazine with rapid fire. The gun functioned well and is more accurate then I am. At 75 feet I managed to keep everything in 6 inch groups and with some of the work I have planned I’m sure I can get that down to 3 inch groups. I also put 3 magazines of Federal Hydroshok, 2 magazines of FMJ reloads and 1 magazine of RNL reloads with no malfunctions.

The grips safety bites into my hand and it will need to be changed for a beaver tail. The thumb safety is a little to small for reliable use and will also need to be swapped. The sights are serviceable for range work, but will need to be drastically improved for combat shooting. The trigger is a little mushy and the trigger pull could be lightened.

I was very happy for two reasons. First the gun is accurate. Second the work I wanted done on the gun is needed so I won’t be wasting money. This is going to be a fun project.

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