Friday, October 24, 2008

A Birthday and 3 Dick's Sporting Goods Gift Cards...

...and I wound up with a bunch of stuff for this coming hunting season.

Yep, I was another year older not all that long ago, and I scored three gift cards for Dick's Sporting Goods from my family. Not a bad haul at a total of about $145. My wife threw me a $50 card. She also got me two pairs of Levi's jeans at $44.00 a pair. Unholy deluxe denims Batman! Yes that was for regular Levi's 505 jeans at Sears. They are on sale now at $29.99 a pair and if I can find the receipts, off to Sears I go to get $28, plus tax, back in our pockets. But I digress. Where was I before I got off to Sears? Oh yes, the daughter gave me a $30 gift card, and the son gave me a $65 gift card. bet you can tell which one is paying her own way through grad school. Not a bad little haul.

So I have made a few trips to Dick's over the past week. Three trips to be exact. I debated getting something like a pair of hunting boots, but did not see any that suited my fancy. I also thought maybe I would get a nice set of camo rain gear, but again nothing made think I wanted to spend any money on what they were selling in that department. Most of it looked like junk, and what was good was way high in price. As it turned out I wound up having to pay their prices because I had their gift cards, but I was not about to go overboard on something that was way too high priced for me.

I also looked at sleeping bags, none that would be up to my standards, not a big selection anyhow. I would want one that would last for years, and keep me or someone else warm down to about 0 degrees Fahrenheit, and the only one they had with that cold rating had a cotton outside and lining. Are they kidding - cotton? I also checked out the fishing department, but to tell the truth the prices were again too high. That stuff ought to be on sale at this time of the year, but not at Dick's. Oh well back to the hunting and shooting stuff.

I decided that I would spend my plastic on things I could use for the upcoming hunting season, and that is just what I did. I got a bunch of things. See the pic, click to enlarge. I picked up a deer scent - deer scent drag double combo pack (two bottles of deer scent - yep deer piss in bottles - and scent drags to make a scent trail as I walk along in the woods), a bottle of pure doe in heat urine (drives the bucks wild), orange trail marking tape (great to put strips of this on trees in a circle around your stand to let other hunters know you are nearby), Hunter's Specialties laundry detergent, Hunter's Specialties body wash & shampoo (really works to get rid of human odor, I have used it for years), a value pack of hand warmers, a 20 pack of plastic gloves (used when gutting deer or handling scents), a single pack of arm length deer gutting gloves (it gets messy inside the body cavity of an animal you are gutting), two 2 packs of wool blend socks, a nice pair of scent blocking hunting gloves, a silicone embedded gun cloth (great to use on firearms you take hunting to keep any water from rusting your gun), 2 knife sharpeners (only one shown in the pic, but both are the same thing), and a Buck Bantam 285 BLW knife. I figure the 4 things that I will get the most use of over the next few years will be the socks (one set of two pair, I'll probably put the other set into a care package for one of our troops in Afghanistan), the gloves, the knife sharpeners, and the knife.

The knife is where I may have been ripped off. It went for $24.95 plus tax.. I have seen it as low as $10.78 online, and even with shipping it would be nowhere nearly as expensive as $24.95. As a matter of fact it was offered at $10.78 with shipping adding only 5.03 for a total of $15.83. Who knows when it would have arrived though. If you are interested in the knife at that price, see:

Of course most places online seem to have it for about $18 to $19, so maybe $24.95 in a store was not that bad when you consider shipping added on to the cost of the online knives. Oh well, I bought it not knowing how little it went for elsewhere. Cannot bring it back now either as I opened it already - well I could bring it back - but why be a pain in the behind.

I think I will enjoy the knife for years to come so long as I do not drop it anywhere in the leaf litter on the forest floor. It might be hard to find again if I drop it there. Note the blade is not dark as it looks like in this photo, just regular looking steel. There is a pocket clip on the other side. There is also something on the other side that was rather disheartening - the word: CHINA. I had not realized that even Buck Knives was now making their products in China. What a disgrace, and what a shame. I would rather have gotten a knife made in the USA, next time I'll have to read the package info.

As it is this knife has a 3 1/8" drop-point blade made from 420HC steel, with a hardness of Rc 58. It is supposedly easy to sharpen. I hope so as I am not all that great at sharpening knives. I get the job done on a nice Arkansas Soft Stone I have, but almost always wind up scratching the sides of the blades I sharpen. The knife sharpeners I bought at Dick are only for quick sharpening out in the field, I use the large stone at home. The handle is plastic, or what they call thermoplastic (what's the difference). The handle is on the small side for my liking. It gets two narrow from top to bottom at the butt end for my liking, but it will still afford a good enough grip for the purposes for which I am likely to use it such as gutting deer, camp cutting, or daily cutting chores. It is a lockback knife with the lock at mid grip. There is a thumb stud for one handed opening, but I find it almost impossible to open this with my right hand using just that hand. Funny I can open more it easily with my left hand, and I am right handed. Go figure, but I imagine it will be easier to open as it wears in a bit. Overall it will be a useful knife, and it appears well made. I hope so.

Now all I need to do is to get a deer. Not as easy as you may think when hunting on public land, not even with all this stuff.

All the best,
Glenn B

Ballseye's Firearms Accessories Tournament # 1.1

Yes folks, we'll keep this as tournament number 1 with the add on '.1' for now.

The prize will be the same as offered the first time around. It is a cleaning kit in a hard clam shell style case. Probably is military surplus from what I can make of it. Also, from what I can tell, it looks to be in as new condition, unused. It consists of a pull through chain bore snake, two bore brushes, a small hand held brush, and an oil bottle (no oil). Click on the pic to make it bigger.

As for the contest, well it is going to be run pretty much the same as the first time around, this time though comments to my blog should be moderated so if anyone sends their answer to me via comment instead of email (as per the rules an email is required to enter the contest and send me your answer) I should be able to catch it and delete it. This will keep it fair for all.

Here is the contest:

Ballseye's Firearms' Accessories Tournament #1.1 (aka: the contest) is as follows:

To enter send me an email (click on the word email or view my complete profile over to the right side of my blog to get an email link) with your complete name, and that also gives your best guess as to what is the item appearing in the picture within this post (yes that pic to the right, not the pic of the prize). If you want to guess but do not want to enter the contest, you can send it to me in an email without entering - just let me know it is not an entry, or you can discuss it among friends, or you can keep it to yourself; but please do not try to post your guess to the comments section of this blog post.
Hint - the item is definitely firearms related. The more specific you are, then maybe the better your chance of winning, that is so long as your specifics are correct. So if you think it is a firing pin, you can say "It is a firing pin"; but of course a better answer might be that it is a firing pin for a model 1697 Schnauzer Shooting repeating rifle (I love Schnauzers - really do). Of course, if it actually is a firing pin, and if no one else guesses it is a firing pin, well then saying "it is a firing pin" could have you as the winner (hint: it is not a firing pin), but if two people say it's a firing pin and one of them adds: "for a Schnauzer Shooting repeating rifle" (and if that is right) then the guy who was more specific will win. Note, I'll be keeping the specific thing within reason. See general rules regarding ties.

As for the item pictured, you are only getting a view of part of the item, and it may or may not be somewhat distorted by camera quirks and or flash quirks and or quirks of me not knowing how to use the camera. The answer must tell me what is the entire item disregarding any extraneous inclusion in the pic that is not gun related, and regardless of any distortion in the photo. There are no intentional distortions, and this shot looks like a pretty good representation of part of the item in question.

This contest opens upon my publication of this post to my blog, and it closes on Friday October 31, 2008 at 11:59 PM my time. I am in NY near NY City, you figure it out as compared to your time. All entries must be received by 11:59 PM on October 25, 2008. I will announce the winner, if any, on or about Saturday November 1, 2008 or as soon after as is practical for me to do so.

There is no entry fee, and there is no postage or shipping fee for the prize in this particular contest if a prize is awarded. There is a pic of the prize above; however I reserve the right to substitute for any prize at my discretion (like if it gets lost between now and whenever I announce a winner, or if the new puppy gets it and chews it to shreds). As far as I can tell, the cleaning kit offered as a prize is new as in never been used, but I am not sure. At least I have never used it, and the brushes look new. It maybe some sort of military surplus. Condition as is, but it looks to be one nifty, excellent condition as far as I can see, little cleaning kit for use in the field. Click on pic for larger view (sorry that does not work on the above pic of the item you need to guess about).

All general contest rules apply as are posted in the link at the top right side of my blog and at Remember as per the general rules only one entry per person, so give it some thought before answering. Please read the general rules at least once. They are fairly long, but still pretty simple. Once you read them you will probably not need to again and by reading them you are more assured of getting it right when you enter. If you win, and do not comply with the rules, someone else will be selected as the winner or the contest will be done over.

PLEASE DO NOT POST A COMMENT TO THIS OR ANOTHER OF MY BLOG ENTRIES TELLING PEOPLE WHAT YOU THINK IS IT. Yeah, I know comment moderation is supposed to be on and working, but with my luck such a comment would somehow get through.

Good luck.

All the best,
Glenn B

Comment Moderation Being Turned On...

...and I'd tip my hat, if I wore one, to Jen from Pen Of Jen and Double Nickel Farm because she is the one who suggested it. It is not being turned on because of any nasty comments or to deny anyone their chance to say what they want in reply to my blog, but rather to make sure that when I run a Ballseye's Firearms Accessories Tournament that no one inadvertently (or purposefully) puts their answer (when an answer is wht is required) in the comments section. As per the rules of the first contest, the answer was to be emailed to me by the contestants; however someone who just wanted to make a guess without entering left an answer. I beleieve that violated the spirit of the game if not the rules, and that it was not fair to the potential contestants, so I have decided to stick with cancelling it and will post a new version of the game.

No big deal though, and now there is a potential solution. We will soon see how it works because I should be posting a new contest either later today or tomorrow.

Now if someone would send me a comment, I'll be able to verify that I have comment moderation turned on properly. Thanks.

All the best,
Glenn B