MONTANA MUSINGS

FROM THE MIND OF MIKE "DUKE" VENTURINO
Which Guns Actually Won...

Which guns were instrumental in making the west safe for settlers? Mike "Duke" Venturino counts two as co-winners with two others as second-placers.
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Compared: The BAR vs. Nambu

The Nambu LMGs and Browning BARs as used in World War II are alike in some regards and vastly different in others.
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The last rifle

When a young fellow was visiting — a distant relative by marriage — he asked a question that caused me great thought.
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Pawn Shop Sniper Rifle

Most noteworthy is K98k Mausers coded bcd4 were intended from the very start of manufacture to become sniper rifles.
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Case hardening redux

Honest wear doesn’t bother me so long as guns’ bores are bright and mechanical function is correct. Damage from neglect is a different matter. I always...
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Mold addict!

No doubt about it — I’m an addict. But, not for any sort of chemical substance. I’m a bullet mold addict! Here’s some evidence.
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WWII Handguns

In my lifelong study of World War II history, much of the focus has been on handguns used in the immense fracas.
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50 Years of Gun ’Ritin’

Hopefully I’ll be able to slide this column by our esteemed editor Brent without him noticing it’s a bit ego-based.
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THE .32 WCF

Of all the popular Old West cartridges the .32 WCF/.32-20 has lacked popularity with me. I don’t know why exactly.
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Cast Bullets and Old...

As this is written, the United States is perhaps experiencing the worst ammunition and reloading component shortage since World War II.
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S&W Hand Ejector 2nd Model...

Smith & Wesson’s N-Frame double-action revolvers are some of the most respected handguns ever made. This is especially true for the exquisite pre-World...
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Duke’s years as a...

Readers of my work over the decades may be surprised to learn my primary rifle interest in the late 1970s to early 1980s was varmint rifles and many of my...
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Old west big fifties

From the advent of metallic cartridge ammunition unto this day, .50 caliber rifles have won the hearts and minds of American riflemen.
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Comfortable Carry

The simple fact is if carrying a handgun is a nuisance you will soon stop carrying one.
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Old & New Ruger Blackhawk .44

In the last days of 1955 Remington and Smith & Wesson unveiled the most powerful of handgun cartridges for its day — the .44 Remington Magnum.
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Historical Guns

Along the way, I’ve received letters/emails from readers saying things like, “Why have you given up on cowboy guns?”
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The .41 Colt

What I hate is the .41 Colt is not exactly a handloading sweetheart. When I first started handloading for a nice Colt SAA .41 in 1982, factory ammo was...
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Me & Sharps Rifles

One evening almost 50 years ago while working as a dude wrangler in Yellowstone National Park, two friends and I were driving over Dunraven Pass in my pickup.
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The .40-82 WCF

Naturally we clearly remember the “firsts” in our lives — first gun, first car, first date, etc.
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The .38 WCF

People sometimes ask, “What’s your favorite gun?” Or sometimes it’s, “What’s your favorite cartridge?” I always reply, “You mean today? I...
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The U.S. .45 SMG in WWII

By the outbreak of World War II in 1939, the concept of military submachine guns was well established in Europe if not so much in America.
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Soviet SVT40 7.62X54mm

If readers are as old as I, they probably remember those fantastic ads in the back of American Rifleman in the 1960s. They were from an outfit called “Ye...
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Casting Revolver Bullets

I cast competition-quality BPCR rifle bullets and have more than a few trophies to show for it. If one of my big .40 or .45 caliber bullets drops from its...
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The Quest Never Stops

In my humble opinion a life should contain quests, or in more modern parlance, “bucket list” items. Mine have been rather humble.
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Colt US Model 1917 .45

When countries can’t supply the number of weapons needed by their armed forces for the wars in which they engage, most must resort to buying them from...
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Remington Model 1890

In my gun’riting career I’ve tried to experience all of the Old West sixguns and their most noteworthy cartridges.
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Geezer Guns

An old saying goes, “Don’t let your mouth write checks your butt can’t handle.” In bygone days I used to brag to my friends in the BPCR Silhouette game
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Changeover Challenges

Hey John Taffin, remember a couple years ago when I told you in a column I was sort of eating crow?
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The M2 Carbine

One of World War II’s most successful infantry weapons was the U.S. Carbine Caliber .30. It was manufactured by no fewer than 10 factories to the tune of...
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Ruger PC9 Carbine

Because paychecks are important, when an editor asks me to cover a semi-auto black rifle, I agree albeit with little enthusiasm. The same was true with this...
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