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August 06, 2007

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On Custom Rifles And Charges Of Elitism

Over the past few months, some of you (or maybe it's the same person over and over again) have asked to see more of my own rifles. This has not been forthcoming. First, it would require that I have a professional photographer come into my home, and I would as soon be visited by one of these as host a coffee party for Hillary. Also, we would have to pay the photographer.

Second, it would soon be revealed how pathetically few guns I actually have. I know three gun-writing colleagues who own upwards of 300 firearms. Where you would store this many guns I can't imagine, unless you were to stack them in the garage like cordwood. Also, if they're worth any money, you have to insure them. No, next to arsenals like these I have hardly any guns at all.

Also, a number of the covetous and mean-spirited among you have said that I was some kind of rich son of a b*tch who was flaunting his wealth to those lesser beings who had to shoot guns from K-Mart and eat government cheese or starve. Such is hardly the case. I may be a son of a b*tch, but I am not a rich one, and I use custom rifles because it's expected of me.

More important, if you do this kind of work for a while you tend to get picky. You get to use some very fine rifles, and it's hard to go back to something less. Sort of like working for a car magazine where you get to drive a steady diet of Mercedes, Aston-Martins, Ferraris, etc., and then you go home in your NSU Prinz. Eventually, you will sell your pets for medical experiments, steal your childrens' college money, and buy a Bimmer of your own.

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Comments

Phillip

As someone who wishes either:

a.) I was a rich SOB who could be an elitist gun-snob who could flaunt my wealth and etc.

or

b.) I was a successful gunwriter who was expected to own and shoot fine, custom guns...

I have to say I enjoy the work you're doing and do not begrudge you the tools of your trade. But if you've got it, flaunt it!

Us lesser mortals would like to live vicariously through your good fortune.

evan

yeah what the last guy said.

Legman688

Dude, get Oleg Volk to take the photos for you. He's very good.

And if you don't know who Oleg Volk is, you need to get out more.

In any case, the "professional photographer" no longer qualifies as a valid excuse.

Mike Diehl

Who doesn't like gov't cheese?

MNHUNTER

Dave,
I thought the guns I own was a very intersting concept. Who would not like to know what guns an expert purchased? Security immediatley came to mind, but I suspect the bad guys already know.
Elitism is not an issue. This is why we read you. We do not expect all advise to be the lowest common denominator but what is best and then what is practical.

The site is becoming increasingly constricted. Maybe this is not the best venue to discuss rifles.

Mike

Dave, I am not one of those who think any less of you for owning custom guns. As a matter of fact I would welcome your comments and reviews of this gun or that gun as I may be able to buy a custom gun some day and it would be nice to know who does a good job and why. A light weight 338WM would cover just about anything that I would care to hunt!

Mike Diehl

Dave I think you should write about any firearms you want to write about & post the pix. Some people save up for fancy cars, others for fancy firearms. I guess most of us among your readers can afford OTC firearms that will shoot well enough to hunt or provide lots of entertainment at the range. But probably most of us like to see what a really fancy firearm can do & be.

Ralph the Rifleman

Dave,
Tell your boss to quit being cheap and pay for some photos.

as moeggs

Is the T/C Icon in .30 cal part of your collection yet?

brian

Mr. Petzal,

I currently own a 7mm mag and a 444 marlin. They serve my elk and bear hunting needs very well, but they are expensive to shoot and wreck my shoulder after twenty shots. I am considering purchasing a 270 win. because it will be cheaper to shoot with less recoil. Who builds the best 270 for under 1,000 dollars?

gable

Dave--I cant decide which to buy? I am caught between a Tika 3 Hunter and either the Ruger Mark II or the Ruger Hawkeye all in .338Win Mag. For the money which rifle of these three is in your opinion the best?

Mark

I love high end custom guns, too. Unfortunately I was born a poor white child and have spent most my adult life struggling in financial quicksand. I’m forced to either build my rifles, or purchase OTC rifles and “tweak” them.

DP, your confession you don’t lead a riotous life style being a shooting editor is sobering. I thought an assignment to shoot lion and eland would have some sort of subsidies to add that necessary medium or big bore rifle to your battery, topped with a good scope…and be the insurance you would return in good health to meet your deadlines.

Doesn’t F & S love you?

Bernie Kuntz

I am with you, Dave. One of my favorite articles of yours was one published several months ago about the "rifles you keep." I am only a few years younger than you, but scrimped and put together an enviable collection over the last 40 years, yet I am no elitist. I don't own a boat, snowmobile, ATV, time-share or second home. I drive a 12-year-old pickup. And I earned $50,000 before taxes in only two years of my 58. So don't let anyone label you as an elitist snob.

By the way, I saved that F&S issue with your gun article, which also contained the wonderful story written by the woman you coached prior to her elk hunt. (I think she got in over her head, but she is an excellent writer!) Alas, my lovely spouse has misplaced that issue!

buckstopper

..."beware the man with one gun, he likely knows how to use it!

RJ Arena

Dave,
Personally, which guns you own is your business, and your privacy. I love reading your reviews and try to pick up a few things here and there, but you have the right to a private life, so you do not have to share that with us. Sometimes I think we know too much about public people and not enough about ourselves, but that is my soapbox.

RJ Arena

Dave,
Personally, which guns you own is your business, and your privacy. I love reading your reviews and try to pick up a few things here and there, but you have the right to a private life, so you do not have to share that with us. Sometimes I think we know too much about public people and not enough about ourselves, but that is my soapbox.

RJ Arena

Dave,
Personally, which guns you own is your business, and your privacy. I love reading your reviews and try to pick up a few things here and there, but you have the right to a private life, so you do not have to share that with us. Sometimes I think we know too much about public people and not enough about ourselves, but that is my soapbox.

RJ Arena

Dave,
Personally, which guns you own is your business, and your privacy. I love reading your reviews and try to pick up a few things here and there, but you have the right to a private life, so you do not have to share that with us. Sometimes I think we know too much about public people and not enough about ourselves, but that is my soapbox.

RJ Arena

Dave,
Personally, which guns you own is your business, and your privacy. I love reading your reviews and try to pick up a few things here and there, but you have the right to a private life, so you do not have to share that with us. Sometimes I think we know too much about public people and not enough about ourselves, but that is my soapbox.

RJ Arena

Sorry guys, heavy mouse again!

Clay Cooper

I have a custom rifle my Father had built for me. Paid $25.00 for the rifle, $50.00 for the scope and $50.00 for the gunsmith. A $125.00 custom made rifle by Jensen's guns in Tucson Az. 40 years ago and I’ll put that ol’gun against anything out there!

Dittos to buckstopper

..."beware the man with one gun, he likely knows how to use it!

Beside, it’s that toothless guy that bought that $149.99 rifle from a gun show, drives a 13 year old ford pickup with rusted out fenders and running board, uses two quarts of 50 weight oil with every fuel up and the windshield looks like a spider web from all the rocks from the dump trucks on the road and Willy for President sticker on his tail gate that gets the big one and he did it all on his own without some fancy hunting guide in Texas, hunt in a can, shooting from something that resembles a air traffic control tower with micro wave, refrigerator and a hot tub!

Clay Cooper

O’ya, I forgot the deer feeder 30 yards from the tower with a 50 foot tall and 100 foot wide green screen for some of that photographic wizardry that makes it look like he was in New Zealand hunting!

Animal

Government cheese! That reminds me of an old joke...
Punchline: "Stop! That's nacho cheese!"
he..he..he...

Clay Cooper

I’m sorry Dave, I had a relapse of GI humor!




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