Thursday, June 29, 2006

Dillon is my friend. I think

Several weeks ago I phoned Dillon asking to return the electronic ear protectors (which I had bought from them) for repair or replacement, on warranty.

I have had the muffs for 2 or 3 years; they were a gift from SWMBO. I liked them, but eventually the trunnions on both muffs (you know, the part that the hangers hook onto, with the little pin that keeps falling out) broke off. Not all of them, just one on each muff. That happened on the same day, I guess. I don't know. They were fine when I put them in my bag, but when I pulled them out at the match the were both broken.

I suspect that I caused the damage. I was running out of the little pins that keep falling out, so I used some Loc-Tite (red) to install my last two spares. I guess the plastic doesn't like loc-tite (red).

When I called Dillon, the helpful customer-service guy said they were running short on parts. He didn't know if he could repair them, but if I returned him they would take a look at them. If the had the parts to repair them, they would. If they didn't have the parts, they would keep my muffs for parts and sell me a new set for the low-low price of only $85.

The were worth zilch to me in that condition, so I said sure, you betch, sounds like a great deal.

I dithered for a couple of weeks, then I caught a bad chest cold and wasn't going anywhere for a couple of days. SWMBO came by to bring me cold medicine and asked if there was anything more she could do for me.

Such a caring, solicitous lady.

Quick to take advantage of her kindly nature, I said "Well, now that you mention it, there is one little thing."

I grabbed the unsealed box I had thrown the muffs into, along with the Dillon's catalog on which I had written the Authorized Return Number, explained what I was giving her and asked if she would please, PLEASE send them to Dillon for me.

She smiled sweetly ... well, what else could she do, she asked ... and said "why sure, honey. Anthing I can do to help a poor, sickly Geek."

Yeah, she calls me Geek, too. Well, not all the time.

Free Image Hosting at www.ImageShack.usI don't know how long those muffs laid around her house. I last saw them a couple of weeks ago. But today, when I got home from work, I found a little brown package from Dillon (via Fed-Ex) on my doorstep.

Anxiously opening the box, I found .... this.

Image Hosted by ImageShack.usWhat I had SENT them, was ... this.

Well, it was the black ones and they weren't nearly in such good condition. But it definately included two muffs, and headstrap and wires and hangers.

The single muff is worth a lot more than what I sent them (functional, except they wouldn't stay on my head), and I'm really grateful for their fast service and cheerful no-bullshit warranty.

It's just that I was kind of expecting to see an entire set of ear protectors in the box.

I don't mind paying for the replacement. But I'm a little confused about what they expect me to do with one, single, blue muff.

I'm a little apprehensive about calling them to ask that question. Maybe they know I'm a Geek. In that case, their answer might be a little ... physically unlikely?

But call them I will. I'm pretty sure they'll explain that it was a mix-up in the shipping department. A failure to communicate, if you will. Probably, somebody said "Ship an HP earmuff to The Geek", and they guy they were talking to thought "mmm, okay, an earmuf it is".

After all, that's exactly what I got.

I just hope that nobody calls me "Geek" while I'm talking to them.

It isn't easy, being Geek.
Free Image Hosting at

I talked to Dillon, and there was apparently a missed communication between the Returns Department and the Shipping Department.

What they had intended to send me was a complete replacement set of HP1 earmuffs. Not a new set, but one mostly reconstructed from returned/functional components. I don't know, the single muff I received looked like brand new. They will send me the headstrap and the other muff (probably was shipped out last Friday, I may receive it by the end of the week). I'll have to hang the single muff on the other side of the head strap, but it's still under warranty and the cost to me was . . . nothing. Nil, zip, nada, not a single penny. Not even for shipping.

I guess Dillon IS Still My Friend!

Wednesday, June 28, 2006


It is with great pleasure (read: ROFLMAO) that I celebrate moving "LawDog" from "Places That I Recommend" to "Websites That I Read Every Day".

If I were to be completely honest, I would probably swap it with Scrappleface, but that's just me.

As much as I appreciate the ingenuity of Scrappleface, it doesn't stand comparison with the originality, the humor, the sheer exuberance of Lawdog.

Scrappleface is engineered humor. Lawdog is spontaneous and real to the point that nobody (even Doc Adams) can match.

If you're not reading LawDog every day, you're waiting too long for your daily quota of fun.

Monday, June 26, 2006

10 Annual Oregon SingleStack Championship

It's only two weeks away, so it's time once again to start touting the Biggest Little SingleStack IPSC Match In The World!

(Apologies to Reno, "The Biggest Little City In The World", and any other singlestack match that manages to get more participants than Oregon's match does.)

On July 8, the Albany Rifle and Pistol Club (ARPC), under the benign influence of world-class USPSA Section Coordinator Michael "Mac" McCarter, will once again host a match whose motto is "No Yuppie Guns".

ARPC Webmaster Brian Berkely has described the technical qualifications for match entry so well, I'll just quote him rather than try to improve on it:

If you haven't heard, this year's rendition of the Oregon Single-Stack Championship will be no different than the previous years. It will have more stages, and also recognize the Provisional USPSA Single Stack Division. If you have a pistol that meets Single Stack Division criteria, you can use that. You can use your traditional Limited 10 Single Stack Pistol in Limited 10. You can use your wide body STI/SVI in Limited 10 (unless you have a single-stack grip frame on it, you just compete for ribbons). You can shoot your polymer/tenifer Austrian wunder pistols in Limited 10 (compete for ribbons if using double-column mags). We are still giving away 3 Springfield Armory Stainless GI .45's. We have lots of other goodies from Springfield to give away as well. So, if you haven't sent in your match registration, hop to it! You don't want to miss out on one of these awesome shirts .......

If you click on the article title, you'll be taken to the ARPC IPSC website, which (among other information) includes links to the twelve (12!) stages which will be featured in this match.

You read that right. It's a one-day match, and you'll be shooting twelve stages.

You can get an entry form and match info here (match fee was $45 until June 15; it's $55 now) and detail match info here ... including much information already provided by Brian.

Last Year there were over 100 competitors. This year there are already 86 people pre-registered, and I don't know how current the competitor list is.

Will I be there? You bet your bippy; I wouldn't miss it for the world.

Will I be competing? That's another story. I've been whining for so long that I can no longer see Iron Sights, the people who have to squad with me at the weekly club match are beginning to lay sacrifices at the altar of Dave Skinner who is the latter-day father of Open Guns. (At least I have ONE gun I can still shoot, which cuts down on the whining except for this once-a-year-day.)

Actually, I was seriously considering a pass on the whole match. But at Area 1 I met the Blue-tiful Smurfette at a safety table and she asked me if I was going to the SS match. When I said I didn't think so, she admonished me severely. Well, if she's going, I'll be there. Whether I compete or not depends entirely upon my masochist-factor for that week. I've got the gun (The Beloved Kimber, which needs cleaning), I've got the bullets (I'm pretty sure there are 230 rounds in that 30-caliber US Army Surplus Ammo Can), I've got the money ($55 is pretty cheap for a Major Match with twelve [count 'em, 12!] stages that I don't even need to set-up or tear-down).

You're probably saying "So, Geek, what's the problem? You can't hit shit anyway with that big ol' Open Gun. You think you're going to embarass yourself any more shooting Limited 10 again?"

Well -- no. Actually, it might be GOOD to have a by-golly certifiable alibi going into the match.

Mac is famous ... or infamous, depending on how badly you were snookered at the last match where he was responsible for stage design ... for providing interesting, challenging stages. The club expanded the North Range this winter from 7 to 12 shooting bays, and I'm anxious to see what it's like to shoot on the five new bays dug into the East Side of Saddle Butte.

And it's worth the trip to watch the for-sure Vultures circling overhead during the match. You don't get that kind of aerial show at many other ranges in the world. Especially while there's shooting going on.

MMM --mmmm, I'm wavering here. I need a bit of arm-twisting.

Tell you what. If the competitor list tops 100 between now and July 8, I'll be there with bells on.

Which might just be sufficiently distracting to the other members of my squad to give me a slight competitive edge.

UPDATE: June 27, 2005

I just received an email from MD Mac, sent to CCS members. It has a few more details, you might be interested:

Hi All,

Just a last of the minute reminder that the 10th Annual Oregon Single Stack Championship is just around the corner, July 8th.

This year it is 12 stages (Iron Man Match) and 265 rounds in one day. There are over 90 people signed up for the match to date and more coming on all the time. We will probably cap the match at 120 people and 12 squads but we can go as high as 144 shooters.

We will be giving away 3 Springfield Single Stacks to competitors plus staff has a chance to win one.

The stages are up on Albany IPSC's and NASS website. It will be a shoot out at the top with 10 Master - Grandmasters including Lisa Munson from Seattle.

Come on out and play at one of the best matches on the West Coast.

Hope to see you,