My brother – Duane Weingarten – recounted an interesting incident with gear that had been hanging in a closet for 30 years:
Back in the late 70’s Revolvers and leather duty gear was the norm. When I took my first LEO job it was with a rural department with six road deputies. I brought Bianchi leather duty gear, which I wore until I left that department and moved onward and upwards to a 500 man state LE agency. The state agency supplied all the necessary gear that they thought an officer needed. I went from revolver to a semi auto. In the last few months I have been moving from a house I lived in for 34 plus years to another. I was packing one of closets up when I found my old duty belt . . .
Back in those days, there was less concern about liability, and one carried what one wanted. In the speed holder pouches were three Safariland comp two speed loaders. I carried HKS before that, the HKS are good tough and reliable loaders. I found them to be a bit slower than the comp twos. During my first police recruit school where I took top shot, one of the older instructors took exception to my use of speed loaders, saying it was cheating. He didn’t want to give me credit for the perfect 300 of 300 score.
The leather and ammo had been hanging around for around 30 years. The leather looked really good and still functions as it should. The nickel plated 357 magnum handloads are 125 grain jacketed hollow points that I shot and carried with the small Department. They were a little tarnished but other wise looked just fine.
I buckled on the old leather after letting it out a couple of notches. I am not a 150lb 20-something any more. I dropped my stainless security six into its old holster and walked out the door to my range 100 feet away.
I drew the revolver, grabbed a speed loader, and proceeded to shoot all 18 rounds into the target. My speed loader skills have diminished some after decades of carrying an auto. I don’t do 1 second reloads any more. But the leather, ammo, speed loaders and revolver all functioned as they should. The group on the paper was shot with 30 year old ammo, double action.
Some of the best values in gear can be found on the used market. Do not ignore it just because it is older. It can be an excellent value for those on a tight budget.
Duane Weingarten (firstname.lastname@example.org) has retired and now teaches advanced self defense and shooting skills by appointment. Facilities include a 600-yard private range and over a mile of private trails for vehicle and “jungle lane” scenarios.
©2015 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice and link are included. Link to Gun Watch