The Forgotten Classic Firearm
Kevin Felts 03.02.18
Believe it or not, there was once a time when firearms, especially shotguns and handguns, did not have rails, lights, or optics. It sounds outrageous. Who in their right mind would have a classic firearm without a truckload of expensive accessories?
While walking around SHOT Show 2018 Industry Day at the Range, a great number of handguns and rifles had all kinds of fancy bells and whistles. Get on just about any gun page on Facebook and there seems to be a running competition to see who can squeeze the most accessories on their firearm.
What if I told the reader, simple is best? The more accessories someone puts on a firearm, the more there is to break, and the more there is to maintain.
For example, take the iron sights on my pump shotgun that was bought in 1982. I was 14 years old, and my dad decided it was time to upgrade my single shot Winchester .410, to a pump 12 gauge. The batteries on that pump shotgun have never gone dead. Even Aimpoint with its advertised 10,000 hour battery lifespan can not compete against something that last forever. That’s because the shotgun does not have sights that require batteries.
Some of my buddies like to deck their handguns out with fancy optics. From time to time one of them will say how XYZ optic stopped working, and it had to be sent back to the factory. Guess what, the sights on my Beretta 92f that was bought in 1989 never had to be sent back.
Do I have some decked out firearms? Of course I do, and they serve a purpose. For example, take the AR-15 that stays next to the bed. It has a red dot optic and a Surefire 200 lumen light. It was set up to deal with issues here on the farm during the day, or at night.
On the flip side of the coin, there is that 1982 pump shotgun in the closet that is kept bare bones, but loaded and ready to go.
Is it nice to have a cool looking firearm? Of course it is. Do some of those accessories serve a purpose? Of course they do.
Someone will post a reply saying, “Kevin, it’s my money and I will spend it how I like.” There is no argument there. Just sometimes classic is best.