When I built the little .22 with the scope on it back in the early 80's - it was a state of the art plinker and a one-of-a-kind in this neck of the woods. Back then the only guys that had scopes on their guns were top tier handgunners and maybe Mad Max.
I am on shit detail tonight, scrubbing guns. I dug out my old heart throb - a Ruger Single Six built to my specs back in the 80's when I first decided to "go pro" (HAR HAR HAR!) on handguns. I first started off with a .357 magnum stoked to the gills with high pressure loads and promptly turned myself into a flinching idiot! Most of my friends did the same and gave up on handguns in disgust... but I did a lot of reading and studying - and decided not to give up. Folks - if you are even considering getting into handguns there is pretty much only one way to start and succeed - do yourself a favour and start with a .22. Trigger control is absolutely critical with pistols and that goes double (maybe even triple!) for the big boomers. That is what most of the pros will tell you and they are absolutely right - and for once in my life I listened to the them. You need trigger time to develop the skills and muscle memory and the .22 is cheap enough to make that feasible.
In any event the pros told me to get one of those slick little Ruger semi-auto pistols but I defied them and got the Ruger Single Six instead. Most of my gunny role models at the time were revolver men and that was the way I figured I would go too. As time went by I shot the living daylights out of that little gun - and slowly I started to get good. Finally I was so good that the crappy Ruger trigger was giving me road rage - so I had a smith polish it out for me. Now the trigger breaks like glass and the pull is at around 3.5 lbs. Hogue grips were like hen's teeth too - but somebody was able to bring one in and soon the gun was all pimped out. Hogue grips are a dime a dozen now too.
Bob Milek was a pioneer of precision handguns and handgun hunting. This is who I wanted to be if I ever grew up.
Bob Milek made my head swim with the things he was doing with handguns. When he started scoping them I figured I had to do the same! I had to have the barrel of the gun drilled and tapped and a base custom machined. Today all that crap is standard and you get it right out of the box. At this point I was approaching my 30's and was starting to worry the local snipers. I started hassling them at the tournaments and if I ate my Wheaties and they shat the bed - I even beat them a few times, LOL! Flinching idiot newbies began bringing me their .44 magnums to shoot to prove to them the gun was fine - the problem was - as always - the fool behind the tool. Somehow I had become something of an authority on shooting. Many times I was advised to go to a dedicated serious target pistol and start to compete...but I loved my six guns. As I settled in with the little Ruger and started doing some seriously good shooting - it's big brother was on the drawing board:
Something like this would be just the ticket on close range big game hunting...
That was the intent, anyways. Build my skills with the pea-shooter and when I finally had the moola - I would build the Ultimate Cannon and go up to Alaska and chase after deer and possibly moose. So many nights would pass just like the one tonight, with my keester at the work bench scrubbing guns and dreaming of hunts down the road.
And then life happened and - PFFBFBFBFBFFTTTT! - next thing I know I'm a fat old buzzard whose hunting days are pretty much done. I bought a Ruger .45 with a stubbie 4.2" barrel for piddling about and making noise....but sometimes when the aches and pains subside...I think about that big cannon ... and part of me still wants to go for it!
Unfortunately I just got old and don't give a chit anymore. Awhile back a couple of my stubfart friends almost got in a fist fight over the scoring of a white tail up on the wall. Grown men! I just watched and laughed. Who cares? When I went hunting anything that came down was a trophy and no bones about it. But people get their ego into things, the stress goes up and the stupidity starts...and who needs that?
Today of course I can't hit the broad side of a barn because I put the guns down to pursue other interests...and these skills are not like riding a bicycle. If you don't use them you lose them - trust me on this!