It’s October 31st, All Hallows’ Eve, (aka “Halloween”). That means the neighborhood kids will be ringing doorbells as soon as it gets dark. No doubt some of you proscrastinators will wait ’til the last minute to set out your Halloween decorations and Jack-O-Lanterns. Don’t worry, in the video below, our friend, 3-Gun ace Taran Butler, shows how to carve a pumpkin in just about 5.5 seconds, give or take a tenth. Taran performed this feat of speed-carving with his trusty Infinity handgun, chambered in 9mm Major.
What Are the Origins of Halloween?
Halloween or Hallowe’en (a contraction of “All Hallows’ Evening”), also known as All Hallows’ Eve, is a yearly celebration observed on October 31, the eve of the Western Christian feast of All Hallows (or All Saints). According to many scholars, it was originally influenced by western European harvest festivals and festivals of the dead with possible pagan roots, particularly the Celtic Samhain. Others maintain that it originated independently of Samhain and has Christian roots.
When you’re practicing or developing loads at long range, it can be a challenge to see your bullet holes on the target, even with a premium spotting scope. Yes, when viewing conditions are perfect, a top spotting scope such as the 88mm Kowa Prominar can resolve 6mm bullet holes at 600 yards and beyond. However, when there is dust or mist in the air, or when the mirage gets thick and heavy, even the best spotting scope may be unable to resolve bullet holes clearly at just 300 yards.
That’s why, if you do much long-range shooting, you should consider getting a wireless target-cam system. This combines a video camera placed near the target with a monitor on your shooting bench. The image from the camera is sent wirelessly to a receiver hooked up to your monitor. With a good camera and quality electronics, a target-cam system can provide sharp images out to 1000 yards.
Until recently, good “turnkey” target-cam systems have been expensive — $1400.00 and up. Guys who couldn’t afford this investment have tried cobbling together systems from various parts. Sometimes the “home-built” systems work, but sometimes they are disappointing.
Turnkey Target-Cam Systems Starting at $725.00
Now Target-Sight.com offers complete Target-Cam systems starting at $725.00 (for 600-yard system). This includes everything you need: 27X Sony Video Camera, transmitter, receiver, color monitor, three Li-Ion batteries, AC adapters/battery chargers, and even the tripod. Or $800.00 buys Target-Sight’s complete 1000-yard system. It includes the same package of components, but with extended range.
Dan Norgrove, the man behind Target-Sight.com, has been able to source quality electronic components at very good prices. Accordingly, you may be able to buy a complete, field-tested Target-Sight system, for not much more than the cost of buying the hardware yourself. And if you put together a bunch of miscellaneous parts, you can’t be confident that they will all work together optimally. The Target-Sight systems work, have good battery life, and everything arrives in one box — delivered with free shipping.
We know that folks considering target-cam systems are justifiably cautious before they shell out hundreds of bucks. You want to be assured that the system is easy to set-up, functions right, and that the image on the monitor is sharp and clear. To satisfy those concerns, Dan Norgrove has created a video showing his Target-Sight system in use in the field. This video shows the actual image on the Monitor from a target-cam placed 300 yards away. (Please note this video is slow in sections because the field test is an uninterrupted “single take”. That way you can be confident there were no tricks done during the editing. What you see is what you get.)
Tonight’s Episode of Shooting USA TV features the 2012 International Revolver Championship (IRC) from the Hogue Action Shooting Range in Morrow Bay, California. You can see another winning performance by Jerry Miculek, considered by many the greatest living revolver shooter.
The IRC, held in June, was the highlight of the 2012 revolver shooting season. More than 240 of the world’s top revolver shooters negotiated their way through 12 stages of fire putting more than 70,000 rounds down range.
Impossible Shots Tonight
Also tonight, Shooting USA’s “Impossible Shots” TV Show features more wheelgun action. Cisko puts a new twist on an old favorite, the El Presidente, but doing it with two six-guns. The challenge is to turn, fire twelve rounds, six double taps, with a gun exchange, in less than six seconds. Plus Jerry Miculek shows what he can do with two guns at the same time.
Shooting USA airs at 3:30 pm, 8:30 pm, 12:00 Midnight Eastern Time on the Outdoor Channel.
Impossible Shots airs at 3:00 PM, 10:30 PM, 2:00 AM Eastern time on the Outdoor Channel
The folks at Desert Tactical Arms (DTA) in Utah recently held a Halloween “fun shoot”. How does an arms manufacturer celebrate Halloween? The same way they celebrate every other holiday–shooting stuff! The DTA crew figured the perfect Halloween event would include Precision Rifles, Superheroes, and Exploding Pumpkins.
Accordingly, DTA hosted its first ever Pumpkin Shoot at the Sniper Country range in Northern Utah. Shooters (all dressed as Superheroes) had three (3) rounds to engage targets at different distances, racking up points based on target distance (the farther the target, the higher the points). Participants included Batman, Spiderman, Iron Man, Captain America (after a few too many doughnuts), and Nacho Libre (still in superhero training). The DTA crew reports this Halloween Superhero shoot “was a great way to enjoy some fall air and pay homage to the all-benevolent pumpkin.” Take a look:
To add spice to the Halloween shoot, the DTA guys set up a few Tannerite reactive targets on the range. When hit, these produced impressive explosions — as the next video reveals:
If you enjoyed these Desert Tactical Arms Videos, check out the Halloween Pumpkin Shoot Out-takes featuring the full cast of Superhero characters (plus one very ‘dazed and confused’ coyote hunter who wandered on to the scene during filming).
Video find by EdLongrange. We welcome reader submissions.
Everyone should secure their firearms and valuables in a safe place. For most folks, that means getting the biggest, heaviest gun safe they can afford. There is another school of thought, namely “hiding in plain sight”. The theory here is that you hide valuables inside common, every-day items that would not attract the attention of thieves. A hollowed-out hardback book is a classic example.
Well here’s the “book safe” idea carried one better — an entire full-size book cabinet fitted with hidden storage. Some clever wood-workers have come up with custom-crafted cabinets with secret compartments. We first saw one of these cabinets on Glocktalk some months ago, and now matthew [at] archangelwoodworks.com has created a large, elaborate wooden bookcase that contains multiple secret compartments. The patent-pending QLine SafeGuard Shelving System “is available in your choice of wood or custom colors. Dimensions can be altered to suit your needs. Shelving or compartments are customizable for your specific application.” QLine Design also offers media centers and coffee tables with secret compartments. Watch the video to see a half-dozen secret shelves, drawers and vertical compartments built into the QLine SafeGuard bookcase. Watch all the way through — it gets more and more amazing….
Video Reveals Secret Compartments — Check it Out
Credit Steve of the Firearm Blog for finding this YouTube Video.
Smaller, Custom Cabinet with Secret Compartments
If you’d like to see a smaller cabinet with hidden compartments, check out the recent Hidden in Plain Sight thread on Glocktalk. That thread features a custom oak cabinet with a lock-secured secret shelf on the top and two hidden compartments on either side, with slide-out vertical drawers. We like the idea of hiding locks under movable wood covers — for an added measure of security.
EDITOR’S COMMENT: We still recommend a heavy, steel-walled quality gun safe for storage of firearms. A wood cabinet offers no fire protection, and “hidden in plain sight” systems are only useful until thieves get wise to the gambit. Still, clever engineering (and impressive word-working) went into the cabinets shown above. This style of cabinet could be a good option for storing smaller items such as knives, cameras, watches, and laptop computers if your regular gunsafe is already full to the brim.
A few times each year, MidwayUSA puts its Frankford Arsenal Digital Calipers (product #604242) on sale, and we try to let our readers know. Marked down from $22.49, these are just $12.99 through November 30, 2012. We have a set of these calipers and they have performed basic measuring functions in the loading room reliably for many years. But there have been complaints about the long-term reliability of recently-made versions. Still, at this price, you can afford to buy a spare set for your range kit. Measuring resolution is ± .001″ and values can be switched from English to Metric. The calipers come in a handy, protective plastic case, with battery.
In preparation for Hurricane Sandy and other natural disasters, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) urges federal firearms licensees (FFLs) and federal explosives licensees and permittees (FEL/Ps) to be prepared, and stand ready to protect their merchandise and facilities. ATF has prepared guidance (available online) regarding how to plan ahead before disasters strike. First, FEL/Ps should review the PDF brochure, Voluntary Steps to Prepare for a Pending Natural Disaster, (ATF Publication 5400.16, March 2011).
FEL/Ps that have additional questions concerning preparedness are urged to contact their local ATF field office or the Explosives Industry Programs Branch at 202-648-7120.
FFLs with additional questions, should contact their local ATF field office or the ATF Firearms Industry Programs Branch at 202-648-7190. For other useful information on planning for a natural disaster, please visit www.ready.gov. Further information about ATF is available at www.atf.gov.
We’ve had our original SEB coaxial front rest for a few years now and we are impressed with its quality and performance (although the SEB NEO Rest is even more sophisticated). One of the great features of the original SEB Rest is the front sandbag. It employs double-layer construction on the sides and bottom, and has a unique microfiber material on the surfaces contacting the stock. The bottom of the bag is hard and flat, so the bag sits nice and square. We whole-heartedly endorse the SEB front bag — it is an outstanding product, affordably priced at $40.00, shipped (unfilled) anywhere in the lower 48 states. (SEB NEO front bags are $45.00 shipped to lower 48).
We’ve tested both 3″-wide and 2 1/4″-wide SEB front bags and they work great. With guns ranging from 22 lbs. to 10.5 lbs. we’ve found that that SEB front bags perform very, very well. They hold their shape, and don’t “hump up” in the middle. The microfiber material, in our opinion, is superior to either Cordura or untreated leather. Even without stock tape on your gun, the microfiber allows the rifle to slide very easily. With stock tape, friction is super-low. You don’t need to put silicone, sailcloth lube, or powder on the front bag — it’s not necessary.
Less Vertical, Better Groups with SEB Front Bag
One of our testers was experiencing vertical when shooting a 6 PPC with a different front bag. He tried both leather and Cordura front bags, and experimented with various amounts of sand fill, but the results were unsatisfactory. The leather and Cordura bags either did not hold their shape, or, with more sand fill, they were too hard and the gun jumped. Then our tester switched to a SEB front bag. He noticed an immediate improvement in gun handling and his targets showed reduced vertical with the same load. Problem solved.
Bag Works with Other Front Rests Too
While the SEB front bag is optimized for use with the original SEB coaxial rest, it can be adapted to other front rest tops. The standard version is made from black microfiber with brown leather, but it is also available with black leather sides. The standard vertical thickness for the 3″ or 2 1/4″ section between the ears is approximately 1″, but other dimensions are available on request. The latest SEB front bags have a filler spout on each side. SEB front bags are available in the USA from Ernie Bishop in Gillette, Wyoming. Call (307) 257-7431, or email ernieemily [at] yahoo.com. The standard SEB front bag sells for $40.00 including shipping to lower 48. Front bags for SEB NEO rests, either one-piece or Tri-lobe style, cost $45.00 including shipping to lower 48.
Sturm, Ruger & Co. has created a series of 11 short videos that trace the history of firearms, from matchlocks to modern semi-autos. Ruger’s “History of the Gun” video series provides a fascinating look at firearms technology throughout the years. The host is Garry James, Senior Editor of Guns & Ammo magazine. Featured here is Segment 7 on Rifling. Other installments in the series are linked below.
Airguns are fun and inexpensive to shoot. During the winter you can practice indoors, developing skills you can use in smallbore and centerfire competition. If you want to get a quality air rifle for fun shooting or competition, save money by ordering through Pyramid Air, which has the largest inventory of air guns in the USA.
This week, Cabelas.com is offering big discounts on its line of “Bullet-Proof” metal gun transport cases. Cabela’s toaster-style, double-gun safari case (item IK-226585) offers exceptional protection for your rifles. And this week the case is on sale for $339.88 — that’s $100 off the regular price.
Cabela’s premium safari case is built from .063″ aircraft aluminum with 45° heli-arc welded corners all around. Your rifles drop in vertically, each in its own slot, providing a very stable “pocket of protection” for the guns. This safari case has long been popular with hunters taking high-grade rifles to far-away hunting grounds (from Alaska to Africa). It’s tough enough to stand up to rough treatment from baggage handlers.
NOTE: This heavy-duty case weighs 34 lbs. empty. Some travelers report that domestic airlines may impose weight surcharges.
Owner Review: The Bullet Proof gun case is the best I have seen. It left Medford, Oregon and made four airplane changes. When we arrived in Johannesburg, S.Africa, the case was well scuffed from typical baggage handling. We arrived at camp, open the case and everything was in good shape. Test fired our rifles and all was well. A great, well constructed case that I plan to use many more times. I believe it will be in good shape for me to hand down to my grandson. — MMiker, Medford, OR
Another good choice is the Cabela’s “Bullet Proof” Double Scoped Rifle Case with Wheels and Luggage Rack (item IK-227343). This unit is now marked down from $264.99 to $199.88. This case measures 52″ x 14″ x 4-1/2″. It features integral wheels and a fold-out tray that holds additional luggage when rolling through an airport or train station. The baggage tray is very useful, and the wheels come in handy in large airports.
Owner Review: I purchased one for a trip to Africa two years ago and the bag handlers, TSA, & Customs Agents in three countries, on both legs of the trip, were unable to knock the rifles out of sight-in adjustments. I went to Wyoming with my son for pronghorn this fall, again no problems. The rifles were still sighted in for 200 yards when we returned. I’m very impressed with this case so I purchased a second for my son for Christmas this year. Almost enough air time to fly around the world and only minor scratches to show for it. I don’t know about “bullet proof” but it sure is baggage-handler proof! — Steve, Long Island, NY
Owner Review: Takes a beating. This case has been through it all, and the two rifles inside have always been dead-on after the case has been abused by baggage loaders, bounced around [in the] back of a truck 4-wheeling into elk country. In the airport the flip-open shelf is great — load duffle bag on it and roll on out. — TM, Tennessee
If you have a tight budget, the best bargain of all may be Cabela’s 52″ x 14″ x 4″ “Bullet-Proof” double scoped rifle case (item IK-226580) that is also on sale right now. The non-wheeled version of this case is now $90.00 off, marked down from $219.99 to just $129.88. That’s a heck of a deal for an all-metal case, with sturdy latches and welded corners.
Owner Review:This is one tough case. I painted a large white lightening bolt on each side to make mine unique. The wear and tear on my paint job showed how rough the handling had been back and forth to Africa. My rifles were in perfect condition. — Richard, Oxnard, CA
Sale Report by EdLongRange. We welcome reader submissions.
Last month, the Montana Rifle and Pistol Association (MRPA) hosted the 3rd Annual Northern Rockies Long Range and F-Class Regional at the Deep Creek Range near Missoula, Montana. The match was a sell-out for the third straight year, and three competitors set pending NRA Long Range and F-Class National Records. If the pending records are recognized by the NRA, that will make a total of eight (8) NRA National records set at Deep Creek over the last three years.
This year, the forest fires and resultant smoke conditions in the Intermountain West cast a ominous haze over the event. However, the haze did not prevent outstanding performances by many shooters in both F-class and sling divisions.
All National Guard Shooter, SSG John Coggshall
SSG Coggshall is a member of the Connecticut Army National Guard’s 1-102 Infantry battalion and a member of the All National Guard marksmanship unit. Coggshall used an Eliseo Tubegun set up as a Palma rifle and used factory-loaded ammunition. Coggshall shot great, finishing with a 1091-59X out of a possible 1100 points. This should be a new national record for the Long Range Regional Aggregate in the Service Category. The previous record was set in Missoula by Allen Spiker, former member of the All National Guard team. While Coggshall is new to the Palma game, he has a lot of experience shooting smallbore as well as service rifle. He has been on a winning Whistler Boy team, and has been the High Junior during the President’s 100 at Camp Perry. His Team Coach described him as a hard-holder who can hold half the X-Ring with his iron-sighted Palma rifle.
Ken Nelson also had a record setting performance. Nelson fired a very impressive 1096-71X, as he dropped only four points to smash previous national record in the Senior Category. With this score he not only established a new NRA national record, he squeezed out the tournament win over second place finisher Allen Spiker. Both shooters fired 1096s, but Nelson surpassed Spiker by X-count. Nelson reported that he received some advice from his friend, German Salazar, before the match, and Nelson took that advice to heart. He noted that his thought process between shots really helped him on the line. Nelson splits his time between his native British Columbia and Phoenix, AZ where he shoots at Ben Avery. Nelson only began shooting long range four years ago, after many seasons as a smallbore shooter.
LTC Donald Erpenbach – Montana ARNG
LTC Erpenbach set two pending F-TR records at the match. Erpenbach shot exceedingly well on day one of the tournament. In the first day’s Palma course Erpenbach shot a 442-14X besting the previous record held by USAMU shooter Sherri Gallagher. Erpenbach was on a roll and in the separate 1000-yard match he fired a 194-7X, edging ahead of the previous record. Erpenbach really put things together well for this match.
SGT Micheal Palagi – Montana ARNG
SGT Palagi received the MRPA’s new “Top M-24” shooter award. This award recognizes Montana Soldiers who shoot an issued sniper rifle with issued M118LR ammo. Palagi’s recent performance was outstanding and he is deserving recipient of the first Top M-24 award.
Deep Creek Range
The Deep Creek Range in Missoula, MT is one of the nicest places to shoot in the Intermountain West region. The range is located in the mountains within a few minutes drive of Missoula, and there is camping on-site. When conditions are good at Deep Creek, records get broken. The MRPA host 3 weekends of shooting there every year. To learn more about shooting at Deep Creek, contact Jamey Williams at jameydan[at]gmail.com.
The MRPA wishes to thank the 2012 Northern Rockies Sponsors:
Bruno’s Shooter Supply
Carl Boettger Scope Mounts
Competition Machine – Gary Eliseo