Sunday, March 16, 2014

Gun Show Report

     It's another Indy 1500 weekend!  Tam's pal Shootin' Buddy and my friend, the Data Viking showed up at 8:00 a.m. Saturday.

       After a nice breakfast and an altogether too exciting trip by the bank (at the drive-up, I dropped a fully-endorsed check made out to "cash" somewhere in the back seat of the truck and, rather than hold up the line, wrote another after a very short search, figuring I'd find it on the way to the show, which I did not), we arrived at the Indy 1500 Gun & Knife Show...and were directed to the nearest available lot, the length of the fairgrounds away from the show.

     The Indiana State Fairgrounds are large.  It was a healthy walk and probably good for us -- and took about as long as the wait in line to get into the show.

     The show was crowded a couple of hours after opening, so it took some time get through it.  This was the second show the booksellers I've been saying Hi to for over a decade were absent; last time they were there, they were having trouble with their new vehicle and not much enjoying the prospect of winter, so perhaps they've just decided to wait for better weather.

     .22 LR prices are still falling; I ended up buying a couple of boxes from Data Viking, who gets good prices at a shop up where he lives, but we did see some for essentially the same price, still over a dime a round.  --A northern Indiana loader is setting up to do .22 LR (!), which calls for some specialized equipment  to prime 'em (!!) but bids fair to help the supply.  (And for those of you who own obscure larger-bore rimfire: I have no idea if the machinery's various jigs are scalable, but what an interesting thought.)*

     Me, I did not buy a gun; ended up with some purse add-ons (yes, yes, my present purse has some MOLLE-like provisions; and sometimes I wear Army [ish] boots, too, just like your Mom), a knife-like object (Chinese take on an old straight razor, crossed with a pocketknife) and, of all things, a general-coverage radio receiver, 150 kc/s through 30 mc/s, a desktop solid-state unit I hope to put by my bedside.  Yes, went to gun show, bought radio.  And so it goes.  Perhaps I'll pick up a flintlock at the next hamfest.

      Walking back, I had the radio to carry, plus various bags; but I counted myself lucky: Shootin' Buddy had bought ammuntion, plus brass and bullets for reloading.  He'd bought rather a lot of it.  Tam had her new gun and ammunition, Data Viking was carrying whatever the rest of us hadn't been able to: it was a long walk.  We stopped frequently.  Three of the four of us have been in various accidents resulting in assorted minor leg-gimpage and we certainly were well-reminded.  Still: sunshine.  Warmth.  Good healthy exercise.  If you don't keep moving, you'll never get any better.

     Oh, and the lost check?  After a very frustrating attempt to stop payment over the phone (can't be done), we stopped by Roseholme Cottage after the gun show (but before a delightful lunch at 10-01) so I could log on and get it stopped...while my computer was booting up, the Data Viking found the check neatly nestled in a low cupholder in the door.  Whew!  (And that's why he's so good at what he does: not only skill but dogged, methodical persistence.)
* Meanwhile in Southern Indiana, the remains of what was once the largest smokeless powder production facility in the world remain, looking like a subdivision until you zoom in: Indiana Ordnance Works 1.  --Look for the solid rocket fuel/black powder lines nearby.The whole shootin' match (so to speak) was the Indiana Army Ammunition Plant.  Think of it as a kind of steampunk Hanford.  This is all as a result of me trying to find the name of the folks fixing to load .22 -- my Google-fu is weak this morning.


Anonymous said...

One of these days, I'm going to have to get your recommendations for an entry-level ham set-up.

Roberta X said...

I can try -- depends on what you're after.

VHF/UHF can be pretty inexpensive, if you're computer-savvy and live around repeaters (roughly proportional to population density). $50 for hardware plus a license would get you going.

Entry-level HF is a bit different and more hardware-intensive: transceiver, decent antenna, etc.

Anonymous said...

How close to a repeater are we talking? I'd struggle to get closer than about 25-30 miles (albeit over flat ground), from what I can see.

Old NFO said...

GLAD you found the check!!!

Roberta X said...

Old NFO: no less so than I was. The amount was...substantial.

Anon: The useful range of a repeater depends on how high up it is, more than anything. High up, over flat ground... Hearing a typical 2m would be likely. Transmitting to it with a 4-watt HT and the antenna it came with? Very maybe.

Eck! said...

Using a Baofeng dual band HT (about 5W) I generally work a 18mile radius off the standard stubby duck. Of course a better antenna like a 5/8ths magmount does wonder to improve that. All this in lumpy New England. Out in the flat flyover parts that easily doubles.


Anonymous said...

Had a great time as always, Bobbi!

Yay, gun show! Yay, Broad Ripple grub.

Rough duty, but someone has to do it.

NEXT SHOW: a friggin' cart for all the reloading supplies I buy!

Shootin' Buddy