That’s not a typo: Bubba don’t smith guns, he smites guns. And a look around the trusty Intertubes tells us he’s been a busy little Bub, he has.
We’ll start with the venial sins and work our way up to the mortal sins. For the first, Father Weaponsman is inclined to let you off with a few Paternosters and a week of remedial training. For some of the others, well, the penalties shade away through lifetime tool prohibition, towards the positively cruel and Asiatic.
But this Asiatic pistol, a Norinco commercial TT-33 knockoff (aka Type 54), tends more towards the venial, because it is, after all, done upon a cheap and common pistol. As a common commercial import in the period 1985-89 it has little value as a collector piece and less as a carry pistol, with its unusably awkward ATF-specified afterthought safety. (Not to mention that most of these are chambered in a cartridge without suitable defensive ammo available). The “upgrades” Bubba has installed don’t mitigate its weaknesses: cheap rubber grips force-fit off a 1911, a refinish job that is more redolent of Krylonkote than professional products, and three incredibly tactical perforations in the trigger, for the purpose of…? We’d guess, for the purpose of demonstrating that this Bubba was the only one in the bayou with a fully equipped shop, to wit, a Home Depot drill press. (Extra Bubba Points if he drilled the trigger in the gun).
Yes, it’s ugly, but not fugly. But patience Grasshopper: Bubba will take us there in due course. Not quite yet though, first we have another pistol Bubba job.
This one is more of a category error, as it doesn’t seem badly done… instead, the logical question is, “Why would you do that?” Handguns by design give up some of the benefits of long guns (like powerful cartridges, and shoulder-fired stability) for convenience and portability.
Here, by using a large aluminum chassis to mount the gun to a scope and an AR-15 stock, Bubba has produced a weapon with the awkwardness of a long gun, but with its firepower limited to five pistol rounds. This was ID’d to us as a Smith, but we wonder if it’s a Taurus. It looks like a Judge.
Here in New England, some waterfowl hunters like inexpensive, three-shot bolt action shotguns, usually with long barrels (up to 34″) in hopes of reaching out to formations of Canada geese. Of course, if you are Bubba with tactical ambitions, you need to trim that shotty down to Operator Size. You also want to do something about that protruding bolt handle.
Now let’s take the jump (the MORE button) and look at Bubba in his natural habitat, to wit, inexpensive Russian surplus. Next stop, the SKS-45, a favorite among Bubbas.
Let’s just start with the first three of the Lee Sisters: Ug, Home and Gnar.
Next Lee Sister up, Beast:
Lots of rails, no sights, and the Magpul MOE pistol grip. (What’s the over-under on whether Magpul’s next two products for the Bubba demo are going too be named LARRY and CURLY?)
… and the queen of all the Lee Sisters, Ghast, answering that question: “Can it still be a Bubba job if they attach a high-quality optic? Well, what do you think?
We know what you must be thinking now. “If Bubba’s SKSes look like this, can I call on a merciful Lord for the strength to look at his Mosins?” Well, can you?
Somewhere, a 97-year-old Red Army vet is looking at this picture. “For this, we fought the Great Patriotic War? Bozhe moi, are we sorry we won?” The ultra cantilevered scope mount is a nice touch. Maybe this Bubba can get with the Bubba behind the SKS above and reach some kind of a happy medium.
The other extreme is taking your bog-standard $300 Mosin and adding $1000 worth of tactical crap in an attempt to compete with a Walmart rifle-and-scope package that sells for $600.
Or you can just go half way.
You can make a Scout Mosin:
Or … well… whatever in the name of Niffelheim this Bubba thought he was making.
Then, there’s the peculiar kind of Bubba who serves Middle East dictators and Mexican cartel chiefs, proving that if you beautify a functional but ugly firearm vigorously enough, you can produce something as ugly as the cartel’s product — and its men’s souls.
But Bubba does not smite Russian iron alone.
One Bubba specialty is making ordinary shop tools more high performance by welding firearms to them. Sometimes he doesn’t even use Mosins or SKSes.
Still, when he is not striving to increase the tactical potential of ordinary household items by welding, soldering, brazing, or super-gluing firearms to them, he brings these same talents to work on improving ordinary firearms, often in ways that leave traditional, hidebound gunsmiths speechless before his unprecedented work.
He has long shared the belief of California politicians that any old firearm, here a Lee-Enfield, can be made 10,000 times more tactically deadly (or maybe it’s deadly tactical?) by the addition of a barrel shroud.
(Which grip is that? LARRY or CURLY? Inquiring minds want to know….)
This kind of innovation makes one forget that Bubba’s usual daily bread is made working on the good old AR-15 platform. Is there anything he can’t do?
He can even improve on Swiss workmanship, our Bubba:
Those silly yodeling chocolatiers breathed the thin air of the high Alps so long, that it never occurred to them to make this simple and natural improvement to the K-31.
But even Bubba, that man of such a wide range of talents, can’t resist sometimes, taking some boring GI firearm and making something really special out of it.
Mel Johnson, eat your heart out. (And don’t dare criticize the front and rear sights for not being in plane. They are! The rifle is just designed for shooting at 1500 yards).