My thoughts on a weapons battery and why

Jerry D Young

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Trusted Member
My thoughts on a weapons battery and why:

1) Main Battle Rifle (MBR) - .308 in a Beretta BM-59/69 clone. Next choice is a folding stock PTR-91. .308 because it will do just about everything the M-16/M-4, AK-47/74, and SKS platforms in 5.56, 7.62x39, 5.45x39 will, just not quite as well for a couple of things, plus it can do things those platforms and cartridges cannot. Can also hunt most North American big game, and small game with .32 ACP adapters. Beretta BM-59/69 because of the tri-compensator and bipod, and the general reliability of the Garand action. PTR-91 because it is somewhat cheaper than the competitors and the magazines (right now, anyway) are only $2 - $6 for good used alloy ones. Next choice is M1A, but it is more expensive all the way around. Minimum of 3 load outs of magazines, dependent on your LBE.

Many will say you do not need an MBR round in urban areas because of ranges. I disagree. There are long open stretches along streets, and if the attackers have long range weapons and you do not, you are pretty much out of luck and can be harassed until the attackers get close enough to take you out. Plus the penetration is much better with .308 for those that think they are under cover when it is only concealment to the .308.

Why no light combat rifle? (M-16/M-4 types, AK-47/74 types, and SKS platforms in 7.62x39, 6.8, 6.5, 5.56, 5.45x39) They tend to be lighter than MBRs, but only somewhat for some of them. Others are quite a bit lighter, as is the ammunition.

One can carry more ammunition, yes. But it is not as effective as .308 by a long shot. Does not have the range, when needed, of the .308. And though one can carry more ammunition with the lighter calibers, it boils down to how many targets can you successfully engage with that ammunition load? Where it often takes 2, 3, 4, or more rounds of 5.56 to successfully engage and put down an attacker due to cover, body armor, deflection of the round, and several other reasons, 1 or 2, occasionally 3 rounds of .308 is likely to take down that same adversary.

210 rounds standard load, divided by 3 is 70 targets engaged. 180 rounds (my standard load of .308 for the PTR-91) divided by 2 is 90 targets engaged. Now, there are a tremendous number of variables when it comes to targets engaged. But in aimed, controlled fire, I think the .308 has the lead. In spray and pray, or heavy suppressive fire, the 5.56 et al probably do.

2) Primary self defense handgun - .45 ACP in a Para-Ordnance P-14. .45 ACP because it will get the job done quiet effectively with reliable FMJ rounds with moderate recoil in a practical size. Readily available ammunition. Para-Ordnance P-14 for magazine capacity in .45 ACP and all metal construction. Next choice is Glock 21SF due to magazine capacity and lower cost. 12 magazines.

3) Dual purpose shotgun – 12 gauge in Remington 11-87 26” barrel w/Poly-choke and various tactical accessories. 12 gauge because of readily available ammunition, it is most effective in most situations including hunting. 11-87 because it is semi-auto which helps reduce recoil, can use many different loads due to the gas system (26” barrels up only. Short barrels do not have the gas compensation system), and is faster on follow-up aimed shots than pumps for most people. Next choice is the same gun w/o the tactical additions.

4) Sniping/hunting gun – Remington 700 .30-’06 with Bushnell Elite 4200 2.5-10 x 40mm. .30-’06 will take all but the largest most dangerous game at long range. Adequate sniping weapon at ranges up to ~600 yards. Availability of ammunition. Can use .32 ACP and/or .30 Carbine for small game very quietly with chamber adapter. Why .30-’06 instead of .308? Because it gives two calibers, both of which are acceptable hunting and defense calibers. Ammunition for hunting would be purchased for either weapon, so you would have the same number of rounds in either case.

5) Hideout handgun - .32 ACP in Beretta Tomcat. .32 ACP because it is useable in .30 caliber rifles as a small game load with the use of chamber adapters. Minimum power for self-defense in semi-auto pistols. Tomcat because of its small size, quality, and price.

6) Secondary self-defense handgun - .45 ACP in Para-Ordnance P-10. Slightly smaller package that will take the larger P-14 magazines as well. Next Choice is a Glock 30 for its lower cost and ability to take the Glock 21SF magazines.

7) Dangerous/large game/light anti-materiel rifle - .375 H&H Magnum in Remington 700 bolt action. .375 H&H magnum for availability, and proven record on big, dangerous game. Moderately effective anti-material round. Better dual purpose round than smaller rounds and the bigger magnums because of recoil, availability, and cost. Remington 700 because of price and the fact that it is repeater, which is important in big/dangerous game and anti-material use.

8) Hand-out gun(s) – Auto Ordnance M-1 Carbine clone in .30 Carbine .30 Carbine because it is small and light, works in a small frame box magazine semi-auto gun, has ballistics at 200 yards slightly better than .357 Magnum at the muzzle. M-1 Carbine because it is light, handy, easy to handle, and more accurate in unskilled hands than a full power handgun or rifle. Also, not too expensive for the carbines, magazines, and ammunition. Primarily 15-round magazines as 30-round magazines can be more problematic.

9) Personal Defense Weapon (PDR) – PDR for primarily non-combatants. Same as the hand-out gun for all the same reasons. Small enough and light enough to keep slung when doing many tasks, unlike full power weapons. Pistols are ‘handier’ in that they are smaller and lighter, but inexperienced shooters seem to handle a light carbine more effectively than a pistol. Again, primarily 15-round magazines, besides the reliability factor, are much more compact to carry and use in a PDW.

10) Get-home-bag/trunk gun – Again the M-1 Carbine in .30 Carbine, this time with a folding stock. For most of the same reasons above. There are guns that compact as much or more than a folding stock .30 Carbine, but most have a much larger profile and the gun and ammunition are heavier and bulkier. Some that seem ideal I do not trust to be reliable. (Not a BOB or GOOD or INCH bag – they call for an MBR in my opinion). 15-round magazines.

11) Long Ranger sniper/anti-material rifle – Vigilance VR-1 .408 Cheytac because of its effectiveness at long ranges for both anti-personnel and anti-materiel sniping. VR-1 because it is light for the caliber (18#), semi-auto. .408 Cheytac due to its effectiveness compared to the .50 BMG and .416 Barrett, and the fact that it is available in lighter and easier to handle weapons. Very expensive.

Why no .22 LR or other rimfires – Simply because they cannot be reloaded. When you are out of ammunition, you are out of ammunition. They are so common that finding one post-disaster should not be much of a problem. Same with the ammunition early on, and then, when it is all gone, they are not useable. For hunting, using a .32 ACP chamber adapter in a .308 or .30-’06 bolt action rifle provides for near silent small game hunting. The .30 M-1 Carbines can do pretty much a .22 rim fire rifle or carbine will do and the rounds are reloadable.

12) Black powder cartridge arms - .45-70 in Marlin 1895, .45 Colt in Ruger New Model Blackhawk Convertible, .32-20 in Ruger Blackhawk & Marlin 1894 rifle. .45-70 because it is the most plentiful of the big bore black powder cartridges and is powerful enough for any American big game at short ranges. Marlin because of quality. .45 Colt because it is the most common powerful black powder hand gun cartridge easily available. Ruger for the same reason as the Marlin. .32-20 because it is a better small game cartridge than the .45-70 or .45 Colt, and available in Ruger and Marlin firearms.

13) Blackpowder muzzle loaders - .58 caliber flintlock rifle, .58 caliber flintlock handgun (x3), .32 flintlock rifle, 12 gauge flintlock shotgun. Flintlock because black powder, including ffff for priming, can be made, and bullets cast from scrap lead. .58 caliber rifle and pistol for bullet interchangeability. Any good quality brand for availability, quality, and cost. .32 for small game, 12 gauge for maximum power for uses requiring shot loads.

While rifled arms firing ball or mini-balls, or other solid projectiles, tend to have the most accuracy, I believe there is a place for flintlock smoothbore weapons other than shotguns, too. Pistols as well as long guns. I will probably go with 20-gauge for all of them.

Long guns, probably around 32” straight barrel, and 24” blunderbuss style. Pistols in 4”, 6”, and 10” straight and blunderbuss styles.

14) 14. Archery weapons – When quiet is needed and there are no suppressors for the firearms, archery weapons come into their own. While the high tech ones have some of the same disadvantages of firearms, such as available ammunition (arrows, points, nocks, shafts, and fletching) more primitive designs can be home made and can be effective enough to hunt with and even for defense in some cases.

Bear Carnage Compound Bow using Easton ST Axis Full Metal Jacket Dangerous Game arrows with MUZZY 4 blade broad heads 145gr regular compound bow or a Barnett Predator AVI compound Crossbow using Easton XX75 bolts with MUZZY 4 blade broadhead 145gr for a compound cross bow.

15) Expedient weapons/defenses - Here creativity becomes the watch word. Most things can be used as a weapon, many that are innocuous enough to not get you in trouble if you carry them. A good hiking staff or walking stick, to a roll of dimes in a fist, to keys held through the fingers, and on and on and on. Any search on the internet for expedient weapons will find all kinds of examples. One particular one that I like is not an offensive weapon. It is pretty much defensive. That is a small, lightly weighted throw net. It can be carried in a pocket ready to deploy, or even in the hand, and with a flick of the arm and wrist, (after lots of practice) it can entangle an aggressor enough, for long enough, to do harm to them if required, or two get away.

16) Sharps: My sharps selection and why:

I do not consider any given sharps item as a do-it-all tool. Some can be multipurpose, but none can do everything well, and often not even passably. So I use and often carry a variety of different tools that have some type of sharpened edge, or in my terminology, Sharps, for different situations.

My Sharps System:

Gentleman’s SAK: There are many variations of the small SAK available. The one that I carry daily has a simple blade, small scissors, small screwdriver, and fingernail file. But it also has an LED and an ink pen. It has come in handy several times for those features. Part of my pocket EDC.

Leatherman Micra multi-tool: The Micra is more heavy duty, and has more features than the SAK. I have used it numerous times for a variety of tasks. Part of my pocket EDC.

Leatherman Crater C33 pocket knife: The Crater is a compact liner lock knife that works well for normal, everyday activities. Part of my pocket EDC.

P-51 can opener: This is for emergencies, so I can easily open canned foods that I might find. It is also usable for a few other things, like slicing sheet plastic. Part of my pocket EDC.

Res-Q-Me seatbelt cutter/window breaker: I want this on me so I can break an automobile window in a heat or flood emergency. Part of my pocket EDC.

Redi-edge knife sharpener: Knives are both safer and more effective when kept sharp, thus the pocket sharpener. Part of my pocket EDC.

Folding credit card knife: This is a credit card size unit with a metal blade inside. The plastic of the card folds around and creates a handle for the blade. This is a last ditch tool for survival in case I lose all my other gear. Part of my pocket EDC.

Leatherman Surge multi-tool w/bits: This is one of the larger multi-tools, and is a bit heavy. But it is highly capable, with a wide variety of effective tools, with the four main blades deployable without opening the handles. Useful in both urban and wilderness areas. It is part of my field EDC, in a belt pouch. (A good smaller alternative, w/o the bit option, is the Leatherman Rebar.)

Victorinox Work Champ SAK: A highly capable tool for field use and for emergencies. Wood saw, can opener, bottle opener, whistle, and the other normal set of a medium size SAK. It too goes on my belt as part of the field EDC. (There are several good alternatives at any given time as models come and go. Main thing is having a good large blade and a wood saw, with a metal file/saw a very good addition.)

Spyderco C08 Harpy: This is a wicked, smallish folding hawk bill knife with serrated blade. It is an effective defensive knife. It is also my emergency cord, rope, net, seaweed, vine, and other entangling items cutter to free myself if I wind up caught in such a situation.

CRKT Woods Chogan Tomahawk/Cold Steel Rifleman’s Tomahawk: Another multipurpose tool. Useful for defense, clearing brush, building shelters, cutting wood, splitting wood, used for butchering larger game, breaking rocks, driving stakes, and other impact uses since it has a hammer head. Carried on my belt at times, or on the LBE or on the game cart when in the field.

Sven 21” folding saw: The saw really comes into its own when building shelters and gathering and processing firewood. Much more effective and efficient than an axe or tomahawk/hatchet, the saw collapses into a compact tube.

Cold Steel E-tool: This is a solid wooden handle small shovel. Some might not consider it a sharps, but even if the edges are not made razor sharp, it is still effective for far more than just digging cat holes and defensive positions. When an axe or tomahawk or machete is not available it will do to clear brush and even cut small saplings. Not to mention it is a highly effective defensive weapon. Can also be used as a fry pan or griddle over the fire, if careful. Carried on the pack or game cart when in the field.

Cold Steel 24” Latin machete: Longer than the majority of machetes, the Latin style works well for handling many field tasks. It is not a tree feller, or firewood splitter, but it effective in clearing brush and smaller saplings. And is a wicked short sword. (The Cold Steel 24” Cutlass machete is another good one.)

Cold Steel Medium Voyager clip point folder: This is an alternative EDC pocket carry knife when in the field. It is bigger than I like for dress clothing, but does well in the field. Sometimes I carry it in my pocket, other times in a belt sheath. A general use knife for field and kitchen duty. It is also the knife in my medium sized stainless steel tin survival kit.

Ontario Knife Company OKC-3S bayonet: A sharps with the same blade style of the Randall R-1. It is the current Marine issue bayonet/fighting knife/utility knife. And for the same reasons the R-1 was so successful.

A clip point that makes penetration easy, enough belly for slicing and skinning game, large enough to use to do light chopping. A short serrated section on the base of the blade provides a means to cut cordage.

When used as a bayonet on my PTR-91 or Remington 11-87 when I had them, I had very intimidating tools for controlling situations that do not call for shooting. This is the core of my ‘survival’ sharps. It is the last item I would give up, since it fills the major needs of many disaster and survival situations. Usually on my thigh or LBE when in the field.

An alternative is the Cold Steel Oda: The Oda is very similar to the original Randall R-1 fighting/utility knife developed in WW II and purchased privately and carried by many GIs, Sailors, Marines, and Airmen. The Oda is suitable for both defense and utility work. With clip point it can penetrate effectively, and do small tasks. Enough belly for slicing and dicing and skinning game. Carried on either my belt or on LBE when in the field.

Dura-worx mini planting tool: Essentially a small pick mattock, this tool is highly effective in digging cat holes, defensive positions, drainage trenches, and other digging uses in hard and clay ground where a shovel just will not do by itself. More awkward than a tomahawk, it is still an effective defensive weapon. On the game cart. (There are now some similar tools available from various sources.)

Iltis Oxhead double bit felling axe: This double bit axe has many advantages over single bit axes. It is a felling axe, so one edge is sharped to do the felling, with the other edge set up to do the limbing. Much better than a tomahawk or hatchet for heavier work and for lighter work done for longer periods of time. On the game cart.

Pocket chainsaw: Another useful tool. Smaller and lighter than an axe, but much more effective than the saws on the SAKs and multi-tools. More compact and easier to carry than the Sven, it will fit in medium size emergency/survival kits. It provides a huge advantage in survival situation to construct shelters and gather firewood. In a couple of different medium size survival kits.

Skatchet: This is a field tool/survival tool. It is a small hatchet head, with a coarse threaded eye into which one can thread a handle made from a branch or broomstick. A bit heavy for a backpack survival kit, it can easily be carried in a car kit, or on a game cart to replace a tomahawk or hatchet.

Wyoming knife: This specialized field butchering tool makes dressing game in the field, especially medium to large game, much easier, less fatiguing, more efficient, safer, and less likely to puncture internal organs of the game when slitting the animal open, and skinning it. I keep one in my hunting pack, with a spare blade.

Benchmade Model 5 Rescue hook/gutting hook: This tool is more for rescue work, slicing seat belts or other entanglements than it is for gutting game. But it will work for both. I do not carry mine often, but I do add it to the gear when going on longer field trips.

Pick-of-Life Ice Escape Picks: These are a set of handles with short spikes, connected with a lanyard. Carried on the outside of winter clothing when one is going to be around water, they are one of the few ways to get out of the water after going through the ice. The picks allow a person to get traction on the ice to pull through the ice, or get back on top of it.

As part of my tools and hardware kit, I keep (or intend to get) a Leatherman Crunch multi-tool, Leatherman Supertool 300 multi-tool, Victorinox Swiss Champ SAK, and a glass cutter. Between these multi-tools and SAK, in addition to the Surge and Survivor, I can work on most of my gear, and create things in the field and around town when I need to.

Other parts of the sharps system are other knife sharpeners in addition to the Redi-Edge pocket sharpener. These include a couple more variations of the Redi-edge, a bastard cut mill file, Lansky Blademedic sharpener, Eze-Lap paddle diamond sharpener set, and a Lansky table sharpener kit.

There are several alternative sharps and other sharps I would like to add. They are more for fairly specific situations, and would not be used in everyday activities.

Tek-tite Tekna Ocean Edge arm knife: For diving and for unobtrusive carry under a long sleeve shirt in the PAW.

Cold Steel Counter Tac II boot knife: Another option for unobtrusive carry. Pretty much a PAW option.

And when it comes to hollow handle survival knives I am partial to these three: Tek-tite Tekna Wilderness Edge, United Cutlery UC212 Bushmaster, and the Schrade SCHF1 Survival Knife.

The Wilderness Edge has removable scales, rather than a hollow handle, making it very strong.

The SCHF1 is a clone of the Reeves knife machined from a solid bar of stock. The handle is hollow, but there is no joint in the knife.

The Bushmaster is a copy of the Brewer survival knife. Now, while it does have a pinned tang, if one looks closely, it is obvious that the tang goes much deeper up into the handle than on other hollow handle knives. Definitely not as strong as a the Wilderness Edge or the SCHF1, as long as one does not pry with the knife it should be fine, and does have quite a few features the others to not. I hope to get both the Wilderness Edge and the Bushmaster to build survival kits around.

A Mediterranean Bowie knife: Another special purpose sharps tool. I would like to have one for use in the PAW, in deep wilderness situations where carrying several of the larger sharps tools would not be doable. The Randall R-12 Raymond Thorpe 13" bowie knife is very similar. A 13" to 15" Mediterranean Bowie knife would fill the medium blade role.

The Cold Steel 1860 Heavy Cavalry saber for both mounted and dismounted use. For those situations in the PAW when a firearm is not available or when something less immediately lethal than a firearm is needed, when one is not facing firearms. It can also be a tool of intimidation in many situations, as well as a deadly weapon when needed. It will take training to become proficient.

And for medium and large game hunting without firearms or snares/traps, I would like to have a set of spears. A good thrusting spear, such as the Cold Steel Boar Spear would be part of my gear. The thrusting spear is never thrown.

However, I believe that more than melee sharps should be carried. I believe ranged sharps are necessary, both for hunting as well as defense. For that role I really like a version or take off of the Spartan's javelin. Around 50" long, with tapered, small leaf, or dagger point. Three to five would be carried. They would be recovered if at all possible, but should be inexpensive enough to be considered somewhat disposable.

I am also looking for a modern version of a Retiarius gladiator’s trident, as well as a weighted entangling net. Historically, they were one of the most effective gladiators in competitions, racking up an enviable number of wins over most of the other types of gladiators.

I would like to have a custom copy of a Batangas knife, as described in several of John Benteen's Fargo stories. It was a special version of a butterfly knife, with several inches of exposed blade, around 5" - 7", carried in a sheath. When drawn it could be used as is, or flipped open to expose another 5"+ of blade, creating an effective long bladed knife.

I have not found anyone that can make one for me, in my price range. And I would really like to have true Damascus steel for the blade (clip point), and KVT bearings in black walnut inlaid brass pivot handles.

With a modern buckler and a modern notched corner tapered long shield available, and some specific body armor items, a person could take on ranged sharps weapons, melee sharps weapons, and even, to a degree, some black powder weapons.

And for groups, larger shields that are advanced with several people behind each, some moving the shield and some firing ranged weapons from behind them (or stepping aside and firing), could provide both defense and some offensive use, again against attackers without modern firearms, and limited black powder arms.

With some modern materials and techniques incorporated, some of the weapons and defensive items could be effective even against some modern weapons, if used correctly.

Even 40 years into a very bad PAW there would still be significant amounts of smokeless powder cartridges, and black powder would already be in production for use with our now current black powder weapons, even if only flintlock type actions.

If a person conserves, and preserves, their collection of modern firearms and stock of ammunition to use when truly needed, as when defending or attacking those that are also using modern firearms, and uses the other many options available, then I believe a group can survive and prosper for decades after a major event.

And that does not even considered some of the ancient siege weapons that can be created with modern technology, incorporating advanced features for defense.

The list of my preferred firearms did not include information on magazines for those weapons that use them, nor on ammunition reserves. My thoughts on these subjects:

Magazines: For me, there is no real number, except a minimum. I want as man as I can possibly obtain. But the minimum number amounts to whatever the LBE that will be used with a magazine fed weapon holds as a standard load-out. I use an FMCO vest, which will carry eight 20-round .308 magazines, two each in four pouches that are part of the vest. My primary handgun is carried on the attached battle belt, along with either one or two double pouches for the handgun magazines. So, either two or four additional ready magazines.

In addition, I carry that same number of loaded spare magazines either in my field pack worn with the vest, or at hand on the game cart. I will often have a third set on the game cart, and many more stored in reserve. I also carry ammunition in stripper clips for those weapon/magazine combinations that can use them, and boxed rounds for those that cannot as my additional ammunition stocks carried with me on the game cart and in vehicles.

At the moment I do not have any drum magazines for any weapons that provide quite a few more ready rounds than the standard box magazines most weapons with a detachable magazine use. However, given the opportunity, I will add several quality drums for those weapons for which they are available.

Ammunition stocks listed are minimums. Much more would be stockpiled, in several locations, as time and money permit.

1) A thousand rounds per gun is a good start. Per caliber, it could be way low. I would do the requirement calculation based on each rifle, not each caliber.

2) Hideout/pocket pistols (under 9mm) - 500 ready round each w/1,000 in reserve for each, 25 rounds per month for training

3) Defensive handguns (9mmP and above) - 1,000 ready rounds each w/2,500 in reserve for each, 50 rounds per month for training

4) Defensive shotguns (12 gauge or 20 gauge) - 1,000 ready rounds each w/2,500 in reserve for each, 100 rounds per month for training (25% slugs, 75% 00 buck)

5) Defensive carbines (.223/6.5/6.8/.30 Carbine/x39 class) - 2,000 ready rounds each w/5,000 in reserve for each, 200 rounds per month for training

6) Main battle rifles (.308/.30-'06 class) - 2,500 ready rounds each w/10,000 in reserve for each, 250 rounds per month for training

7) Sniper rifles (.338 Lapua and below) - 1,000 ready rounds each w/3,000 in reserve for each, 100 rounds per month for training

8) Sniper/Anti-material rifles (above .338 Lapua) - 1,500 ready rounds each w/5,000 in reserve for each, 100 rounds per month for training

9) Hunting rifles (medium to large calibers) - 500 ready rounds each w/1,000 in reserve for each, 10 rounds per month for training (example in .30-’06: 10% 55gr Accelerator PSP, 10% 125gr PSP, 25% 150gr PSP, 25% 165gr PSP, 15% 180gr PSP, 15% 220gr SP)

10) Hunting rifles (small calibers) - 1,000 ready rounds each w/2,500 in reserve for each, 15 rounds per month for training

11) Hunting shotguns (all types) 1,000 ready rounds each w/2,500 in reserve for each, 25 rounds per month for training (5% slugs, 5% 00 buck, 10% #4 buck, 10% BB shot, 20% #4 shot, 30% #6 shot, 20% #7 1/2 shot)

12) Enough powder, primers, bullets, and wads & shot to reload each case approximately 8 times, including black powder cartridge firearms

13) Black powder would be stocked in Fg, FFg, FFFg, FFFFg, and cannon grades, with the ability to make a great deal more, in small batches, using white willow charcoal made from local white willow trees, and with stocks (large ones) of high grade sulfur and potassium nitrate (KNO3), using ball mills with lead balls. A large stock of quality flints would be laid in, as well, along with knapping tools.

14) While .22 rimfire is not a big for me, I would still stock it (and do), in quantity. .22 Rim fire - 10,000 ready rounds each w/25,000 in reserve for each, 500 rounds per month for training, 100,000 for barter & trade

I just want to point out that the above list contains items I use, or would like to have, but I do not carry all of them all of the time (or ever, actually), but choose what to have on/with me depending on the situations I may be facing at any given point in time.

I certainly do not NEED everything that I do often carry/have with me, but when I can, I do have them. When it comes right down to it, with the OKC-3S, the CRKT Chogan, and the Surge multi-tool, I could make it okay for most things. And if I could only take one into the field, it would be the OKC-3S.

Just my opinion.
Day To Day Preppers