April 30th, 2014

ATK Spins Off Sporting Businesses and Merges Aerospace Operations with Orbital Sciences

ATK alliant Orbital mergerAlliant Techsystems (ATK or Alliant) is merging its aerospace/defense operations with Virginia-based Orbital Sciences. At the same time, ATK plans to spin off its sporting arms, ammo, and outdoor gear operations into a separate, stand-alone business. ATK sells sporting products under numerous brands including Alliant Powder, Blackhawk, Bushnell, CCI, Champion, Federal Premium, RCBS, Savage Arms, Speer, and Weaver Optics. The new Alliant sporting business will operate from Utah, while the merged Orbital-ATK aerospace business will be managed from Virginia.

According to the Washington Post: “The separation of ATK’s core segments gives it the opportunity to focus on its sporting goods sector, which has grown to a $2.2 billion business through several mergers and acquisitions over the past decade. The company manufactures commercial sporting equipment for hunters, shooters and law enforcement agencies.”

alliant atk merger orbitalThe announced merger of Alliant and Orbital, and the spin-off of the sporting business, should benefit Alliant shareholders. Alliant shares rose 8% yesterday. Alliant shareholders will own 53.8% of the new Orbital-ATK aerospace company, and Alliant shareholders will retain full ownership of the new spin-off sporting enterprise. Alliant’s current CEO and president, Mark DeYoung, will take over as chairman and CEO of the new sporting business.

Will the new Alliant Sporting operation continue to grow? Analysts believe that it will. Management has shown interest in building the company via more sporting industry acquisitions. Analysts believe the Alliant sporting division is poised for continued expansion. While Alliant’s aerospace operations have suffered in recent years from cuts in defense spending, the sporting division has seen impressive revenue growth.

According to StarTribune.com: “The sporting unit’s rocket-like growth has captured the attention of Wall Street analysts. Barclays Capital analyst Carter Copeland recently boosted his forecast on Alliant, noting that “over time … the sporting group has made a more significant portion of the total company’s sales and earnings. … The last seven quarters the business has posted average organic growth on a year-over-year basis of 23 percent.”

For those in the shooting community, the spin-off of ATK’s sporting operations is probably a good thing. The new company can focus on guns, ammo, and outdoor accessories, rather than aerospace programs with long development cycles. Likewise the new company should be more responsive to consumers, as it can adjust production to current market demands, rather than fixed government defense contracts. ATK officials stated that “the company’s Sporting and Aerospace/Defense businesses operate in two fundamentally different markets with very different operating dynamics, compliance requirements, customer sets and growth opportunities. As standalone companies, they will be more focused businesses, with clear and distinct strategic visions and objectives, additional operational flexibility and the financial strength to make the most of their unique opportunities in their respective industries.”

Under the terms of the transaction agreement, ATK will distribute ownership of Sporting to ATK shareholders in a spin-off transaction, following which, ATK shareholders will own 100 percent of Sporting. The spin-off will be immediately followed by a merger of Orbital with a subsidiary of ATK, with Orbital surviving the merger and becoming a wholly owned subsidiary of ATK. In connection with the merger, Orbital shareholders will receive 0.449 shares of ATK common stock for each share of Orbital common stock that they hold. Upon the closing of the merger, ATK shareholders will own approximately 53.8 percent of the combined company on a fully diluted basis and Orbital shareholders will own the remaining approximately 46.2 percent of the combined company on a fully diluted basis.

Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo, News 2 Comments »
April 29th, 2014

NBRSA 600-Yard and 1000-Yard National Championships Results

The Sloughhouse Benchrest Shooters hosted the 2014 National Benchrest Shooters Association (NBRSA) 600-Yard and 1000-Yard National Championships April 23-27, 2014. The match was shot in generally good conditions at the Sacramento Valley Shooting Center. Richard Duncan won the 1000-yard championship, finishing 8 points ahead of past Champ Richard Schatz. In the 600-yard Championship, Steven Raeder edged runner-up Wayne Courand. Bill Johnston set three, NBRSA 1000-Yard Heavy Gun Group Records* during the course of the match. Jim O’Connell reports that the sponsors were very generous again this year. Jim notes: “I think the big raffle winner this year was Bill Hubina who won a Nightforce scope and a Bat action. Congratulations to all the winners and thank you for your support of the Sloughhouse Benchrest Shooters. Hope to see you again next year for the 2015 Nationals.”

File photo from past event.
NBRSA 600 yard 1000 nationals sacramento

The three linked MS Word documents include results of the 600-Yard Nationals, the 1000-Yard Nationals, and the F-Bench Match. Click and download these files to view complete Group, Score, and Aggregate results, with rankings of all the individual competitors.

NBRSA 1000-Yd Nationals Results | NBRSA 600-Yd Nationals Results | NBRSA F-Bench Results

1000-Yard Overall Two-Gun Results
1. RICHARD DUNCAN – 13 (Nat’l Champion)
2. RICHARD SCHATZ – 21
3. BILLY COPELIN – 25
4. BRUCE BANGEMAN – 25
5. ROBERT HOPPE – 28
6. SHAWN GREENE – 30
7. BILL JOHNSTON – 34
8. GREG WILSON – 37
9. CANADA CUMMINS – 41
10. PETER WHITE – 44

600-Yard Overall Two-Gun Results
1. STEVEN RAEDER – 12 (Nat’l Champion)
2. WAYNE COURAND – 15
3. TOM ESSER – 28
4. DAVID LLOYD – 31
5. JOSEPH MCKEE – 41
6. GREG WILSON – 46
7. KENNETH SCHROEDER – 48
8. JERRY TIERNEY – 49
9. TERRY BALDING – 51
10. SHAWN GREENE – 56

*Bill Johnston set the following Heavy Gun records at the Nationals: Single Target Heavy Gun Group, 4.219″; Three-Target Heavy Gun Group Agg, 5.056; Six-Target Heavy Gun Group Agg, 5.899.
Permalink Competition, News 2 Comments »
April 29th, 2014

Big Jump in Number of Concealed Carry Permits in USA

Be courteous to your fellow Americans — there’s a good chance that they might be packin’. Over the past few years, there has been a dramatic increase in the number of concealed carry licenses (CCLs) issued throughout the United States. In fact, according to the National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF) the number of CCLs has risen 29% in the short period from 2010 to 2012 (see chart). We can expect this trend to continue, because Appellate courts have recently ruled in favor of expanded carry rights in California and other states. For friends of the Second Amendment, that is a good thing.

Carry Permit Gun NSSF Trend Chart

Comments by Gun Owners
I’m a Defensive Firearms Trainer and in my state and in my community the number of people seeking training to get certified to obtain their permits is constantly on the rise.
— Chad K.

Good! America can only be safer with more law-abiding citizens carrying. I hope to see this figure increase steadily. — Matthew C.

Think about how much money those states that charge for permits make from those 9 million people each year. Maybe if New Jersey thought about that it would start to issue permits. — John P.

Bet the trend in violent crimes went down by at least the same rate. — Frank H.


Interactive Reciprocity Maps

Do you hold a Concealed Carry Permit or CCW license in your home state? Do you plan to travel to other states in the near future? Then you should determine whether other states will recognize your carry permit. You should study the law carefully so you understand your rights (and the limitations on your rights).

You can begin your research by consulting the Reciprocity Maps that are available online. There are many versions — and it’s wise to check more than one. We caution that not all the maps may be 100% up-to-date for all jurisdictions. We suggest you start with the map provided by USACarry.com. Read the detailed instructions.

Permalink Handguns, News 2 Comments »
April 29th, 2014

STI International Featured on Shooting USA Television

This Wednesday, April 30th, Shooting USA will feature STI International, an employee-owned company based in Georgetown, Texas. STI builds great pistols. In fact, STI has claimed more modern-era national pistol titles than any other manufacturer. This week’s episode of Shooting USA will provide an inside look at STI, showing how STI’s match-winning handguns are crafted and assembled.

STI International

STI SteelMaster
STI International’s SteelMaster is a shorter, lighter race pistol optimized for faster target acquisition and faster follow-up shots. With a STI 2011 frame, 4.15″ classic slide, STI Recoilmaster, and Trubor compensated barrel system, the SteelMaster delivers the advantages of a full-size race pistol in a smaller, lighter, faster reacting, and less violent package. And unlike many other compensated pistols, the SteelMaster runs factory ammo without a hiccup.

STI International

The Steelmaster’s shorter Trubor barrel system and shorter slide combine to decrease slide cycle time allowing the shooter to achieve faster follow-up shots. The slide has lightening cuts front and rear to reduce weight, and “Sabertooth” serrations. With an overall weight of 38.9 oz, the SteelMaster is significantly lighter than full-size race pistols. MSRP for the STI Steelmaster is $3,048.00 with one magazine.

STI International Edge
Integrating patented 2011 technology with classic 1911 design, the STI International Edge is a high capacity pistol that carries John Browning’s design into the 21st Century. Since its introduction in late 1997, the STI Edge has become the standard for USPSA/IPSC Limited Division competition. Built on the STI Modular Steel 2011® frame with polymer grip, the Edge delivers the traditional features of a 1911 with the benefit of high capacity magazines. The Edge frame preserves the 17° grip angle (like the original 1911). The design allows for double stack magazines without over-sizing the grip.

STI Edge 1911 2011 Pistol

Along with its distinctive full-length dust-cover frame, the STI Edge features traditional front and rear cocking serrations. The Edge comes standard with a stainless, high-rise, knuckle-relief grip safety, stainless ambi-thumb safeties, and a stainless, fully-supported and ramped bull barrel. The Edge costs $2,180.00 with one 126mm magazine.

Permalink - Videos, Handguns No Comments »
April 28th, 2014

De-Gunking a Jewell Trigger — Speedy Shows How

Gunsmiths often have to serve as gun “doctors” as well as gun builders. Gunsmith (and Hall-of-Fame shooter) Thomas “Speedy” Gonzalez was recently asked to fix a trigger problem. A customer was complaining about a trigger that was erratic and “mushy”. Speedy quickly diagnosed the problem. The Jewell trigger was clogged with gunk and sludge — left-over solvents and lubricants had gummed up the mechanisms. Here’s how the cleaning process unfolded…

Speedy: “Gee why would I want to blueprint my Jewell trigger….it has just got a little mushy lately. It may just need some adjustment. Yeah right — take a look at this”:

Speedy Gonzalez Jewell Trigger Cleaning Iosso

Speedy: “Should I go get a tetanus shot now?”

Speedy Gonzalez Jewell Trigger Cleaning Iosso

Gunsmith Mike Bryant comments: “I’ve seen a lot of Remington 700 triggers that were gummed up like [that] Jewell was. Also have seen lots of 700 triggers that had the weight-of-pull screw adjusted [by the owner] to where it had no compression on the spring. I wonder how many of the Remington accidental discharges involved triggers with one or the other of these conditions.”

Speedy: “What?! Powder in trigger as well… hmmmmmm.”

Speedy Gonzalez Jewell Trigger Cleaning Iosso

Clean up done with Iosso Lubricant/Cleaner. Speedy says this is the “Best parts cleaner I have ever found if you don’t have an ultra sonic cleaning tank. I just melted that crud off with a Q-Tip”.

Speedy Gonzalez Jewell Trigger Cleaning Iosso

Same Jewell trigger all happy now — clean as a whistle.

Speedy Gonzalez Jewell Trigger Cleaning Iosso

Trigger ready for final re-assembly, looking better than new. Thanks Speedy!

Speedy Gonzalez Jewell Trigger Cleaning Iosso

Permalink Gunsmithing, Tech Tip 1 Comment »
April 27th, 2014

Most Popular Used Firearms Ranked by Gunbroker.com

Gunbroker Top 5 listWhat are the hottest-selling firearms in the “previously-owned” marketplace? As you might expect, the Remington Model 700 tops the list as the best-selling used bolt action rifle. The leading semi-auto rifle is the little Ruger 10/22 rimfire, followed by another Ruger, the Mini-14. Despite the high cost ($2K+ for the best examples) the Colt Python is the best selling used revolver. (People have realized that Pythons have proven to be good investments.)

These rankings were recently released by GunBroker.com. Every month, GunBroker.com publishes the Top 5 Best Sellers List for each major category of firearms sold on the popular gun auction site.

Gunbroker Top 5 list

Permalink News 3 Comments »
April 27th, 2014

Hi-Vis Safety Gear for Range Safety Officers

The NRA’s Program Materials Center now offers high-visibility vests for both Range Safety Officers (RSO) and Chief Range Safety Officers (CRSO). These $25.00 fluorescent yellow vests come in three sizes, all with reflective strips and “NRA RSO” screen-printed on the back of the vest.

We strongly recommend that clubs consider providing Hi-Vis safety vests to Range Safety Officers. We’ve noticed that when range-masters wear official safety gear (and carry a bull-horn), everyone on the firing line seems to stay more alert. If the RSO needs to go downrange, the enhanced visibility of the vest helps ensure that shooters, particularly novices, handle their firearms safely.

In addition to the bright yellow vests, the NRA sells fluorescent yellow caps ($9.75), yellow or orange knit caps ($17.00), and bright orange shirts ($14.95- $24.95) for RSOs and CROs. These items are all offered through the Program Materials Center.

Permalink Competition 4 Comments »
April 26th, 2014

Praslick Teaches Wind-Reading Skills

Emil Praslick USAMUTo succeed in long-range shooting matches, given the high level of competition these days, you’ll need solid wind-reading abilities. We’ve found an article by SFC Emil Praslick III, USAMU Service Rifle coach, that can help you make better wind calls in competition.

SFC Praslick is considered one of the best wind gurus in the United States, if not the world. He has authored an excellent two-part article on wind reading that is available on the CMP (Civilian Marksmanship Program) website. Both articles contain helpful illustrations, and are “must-read” resources for any long-range shooter–not just Service Rifle and Highpower competitors.

Click to Read Articles:

Reading the Wind (Part One) | Reading the Wind (Part Two)

Part One covers basic principles, tactics, and strategies, with a focus on the 200-yard stages. Emil writes: “There are as many dimensions to ‘wind reading’ as there are stages to High Power competition. Your tactical mindset, or philosophy, must be different for the 200 and 300 yard rapid-fire stages than it would be for the 600 yard slow-fire. In the slow-fire stages you have the ability to adjust windage from shot to shot, utilizing the location of the previous shot as an indicator. Additionally, a change to the existing conditions can be identified and adjusted for prior to shooting the next shot.”

In Part Two, Praslick provides more detailed explanations of the key principles of wind zeros, wind reading, and the “Clock System” for determining wind values: “The Value of the wind is as important as its speed when deciding the proper windage to place on the rifle. A 10 MPH wind from ’12 o-clock’ has No Value, hence it will not effect the flight of the bullet. A 10 MPH wind from ‘3 o’clock’, however, would be classified as Full Value. Failure to correct for a Full Value wind will surely result in a less than desirable result.”

USAMU Praslick wind clock

Praslick also explains how to identify and evaluate mirage:

Determine the accuracy of the mirage. Mirage is the reflection of light through layers of air that have different temperatures than the ground. These layers are blown by the wind and can be monitored to detect wind direction and speed.

Focus your scope midway between yourself and the target, this will make mirage appear more prominent. I must emphasize the importance of experience when using mirage as a wind-reading tool. The best way to become proficient in the use of mirage is to correlate its appearance to a known condition. Using this as a baseline, changes in mirage can be equated to changes in the value of the wind. Above all, you must practice this skill!

Click HERE for more excellent instructional articles by Emil Praslick and other USAMU Coaches and shooters.

Permalink - Articles, Shooting Skills 4 Comments »
April 26th, 2014

Nine Acres of Guns and Gear — Are You Ready?

NRA Annual Meeting Convention Exhibits Indianapolis

NRA Annual Meeting Convention Exhibits Indianapolis“Nine Acres of Guns and Gear — Are you ready?” Those were the words of NRA President James (“Jim”) Porter as he announced the official Opening of the 143rd NRA Annual Meetings and Exhibits. Porter then cut a red ribbon — with a little help from Brenda Potterfied and Eliza, her granddaughter (see photo at right).

During the opening ceremony, Porter told the waiting crowd: “As you walk around the exhibit hall today, keep this in mind — this is where freedom lives.” Along with NRA President Porter were NRA 2nd Vice President Pete Brownell, Executive Director of NRA General Operation Kyle Weaver, NRA Treasurer and CFO Woody Phillips, MidwayUsa’s Brenda and Larry Potterfield, and NRA Secretary Major James Land.

Report based on story by Lars Dalseide for NRABlog


After an exciting Opening Day of the NRA Convention, things heat up on Day Two, Saturday. Here are Six of the Major Happenings at Indianapolis today.

1. The Annual Meeting of Members
Thousands headed into the Sagamore Ballroom at 10:00 am for a review of 2013, where the NRA is headed this year, and how the NRA will promote pro-Second Amendment candidates in the 2014 Congressional elections.

2. The Wall of Guns
For $20 a ticket you earn a 1-in-100 chance of winning one of the more than 80 guns display in a custom rolling case built by Legacy Outdoors. Rifles, pistols, shotguns — the whole shebang.

NRA Annual Meeting Convention Exhibits Indianapolis

3. The Survival Mindset: Are you Prepared Workshop
Kyle Lamb, a retired Sergeant Major from Delta Force, shares his experience from five tours in Iraq, serving his country. The Survival Mindset seminar will be held at 2:00pm in rooms 133-135.

4. NRA Certified Instructor Update
With trainers brought in from all across the country, here you can discover how the best of the best engage their students, drive home the lessons, and promote safe shooting.

5. Refuse to be a Victim Training
Learn where to park, where to walk, how to handle your internet experiences, and burglar-proof the home. Kicking off at 1:00 pm in Room 232, Refuse to be a Victim is a 4-hour investment in living a more secure and protected life.

6. The Stand and Fight Rally
The NRA’s Stand and Fight Rally, the major event of the weekend, brings big names to the Lucas Oil Stadium for a Saturday night to remember. After leading political figures speak on behalf of gun rights, legendary country group Alabama (with 34 Billboard Country #1 hits) takes the stage.

Alabama Plays Hit Songs at the Grand Ole Opry

Permalink News 1 Comment »
April 25th, 2014

Miculek Makes 16 Shots in 4.01 Seconds with 9mm Revolver

How fast can a human shoot a revolver? The legendary Jerry Miculek answers that question in this video. Using his new, 9mm model 929 revolver, Jerry shoots 16 shots in 4.01 seconds, with a reload*. His splits between shots were running 0.16-0.17 seconds. That works out to a peak rate of fire of 353 rounds per minute, faster than some early-era machine guns. Even counting his reloads, his sustained rate of fire would be 239 rounds per minute, faster than a 19th-century Gatling gun. Note: If you are attending the NRA Annual Meetings in Indianapolis this weekend, you can meet Jerry Miculek at the Hornady booth (#6361) on Friday or Saturday at 4:00 PM.

16 shots w reload Split Times Peak Rate of Fire Sustained Rate of Fire
4.01 seconds 0.16-0.17 seconds 353 rds per min 239 rds per min

Smith & Wesson 929 Eight-shot Revolver, Jerry Miculek Edition

Jerry really likes his JM Signature Edition model 629 revolver. Produced by the S&W Custom Shop, this 9mm handgun features a ported, broach-cut barrel plus a titanium cylinder. Jerry says the low-mass titanium cylinder reciprocates very fast, making for a responsive rapid-fire revolver.

Jerry Miculek 929 Smith Wesson S&W revolver titanium

*This was time on target. Total time including initial reaction time was 4.88 seconds.

Permalink - Videos, Shooting Skills 5 Comments »
April 25th, 2014

Got Steel? Action Target Offers FREE Shipping April 25-27

If you are looking to acquire a set of steel targets for your own use or for a local club, now’s the time to buy. Action Target will be offering free shipping on any order made through its online store during the three days of the NRA Annual Meeting and Exhibits (April 25-27, 2014). Action Target will be showing its products at Booth #3418 at the NRA Show in Indianapolis, Indiana.

Online customers can take advantage of the offer by entering the coupon code SHIPFREE during the checkout process. This offer applies to all centerfire targets and to the new rimfire targets (shown below). Rifle targets are AR550 armored steel for durability. Note: Free Shipping offer is limited to the 48 continental United States.

Action Target Rimfire Target

“We’ve always offered free shipping to customers who buy targets at the show, and every year people ask us why we don’t extend that deal to our online customers who can’t be there in person,” Director of Marketing Laren Helms said. “We decided it’s finally time to give all of our customers the same opportunity.” To view the hundreds of target types offered by Action Target, or to buy now and take advantage of this FREE Shipping offer, visit Store.ActionTarget.com.

The free shipping offer, which begins 12:01 am MST on April 25, can save you big bucks on large orders or shipments across the country. For example, a Pennsylvania customer can save $460 on the total cost of a PT Plate Rack. Canadian customers who are able to ship to an address near the border for pick-up can also receive free shipping by providing a U.S. shipping address.

New Rimfire Line of Targets
“With the rise in ammo costs, we’ve been getting a lot of requests from customers for a greater variety of targets specifically designed for rimfire ammunition, so we decided to add an entire product line to meet the demand,” Chad Burdette, Action Target’s portable target product manager. The shooting surfaces of all the Rimfire Steel targets are made of through-hardened 1/4″ AR500 armor steel, a slightly thinner version of the 3/8” AR500 armor steel Action Target uses to manufacture its handgun grade targets.

Action Target Rimfire Target

While 1/4″ armor steel is capable of handling greater ammunition loads, the reactive portions of the targets (painted light blue) are engineered to function best with .22 rimfire rounds. “We wanted to set our Rimfire Steel line apart from other .22 targets,” Burdette said, “so we built them to last for years and added blue paint to create a signature look people can recognize.”

Permalink Hot Deals No Comments »
April 24th, 2014

New Remington 700 High-Velocity ‘Ultimate Muzzleloader’

Remington has just introduced an all-new series of “Ultimate Muzzleloaders” that promise to “raise the bar” for muzzle-loading performance. These rifles, based on Rem 700 actions, feature a new type of ignition system with a special breech plug and a primed, brass case. The magnum-primer-fitted ignition casing is pushed onto the breech plug by the bolt (see illustration below). This creates a tight gas seal for the magnum primer, allowing reliable ignition of up to 200 grains of powder. That translates to higher velocities and more energy.

Remington Ultimate Muzzleloader

Video Shows How New AMP Ignition System Works:

Remington reports: “The Ultimate Muzzleloader sets a new performance threshold with the use of a closed breech system that provides a cleaner and hotter ignition. The AMP (Accelerated Muzzleloader Performance) ignition system uses a uniquely-sized brass case with a Remington 9 ½ large magnum rifle primer that is push fed into the breech plug creating a gas seal in the flash hole of the primer (see cutaway below). The result allows the shooter to load up to 200 grains of powder for increased range, energy, and on-game performance.

Remington Ultimate Muzzleloader

Using 200 grains of Triple Seven® Pellets in combination with Barnes’ Spit-Fire T-EZTM 250-grain muzzleloader bullets, the Model 700 Ultimate Muzzleloader gives the shooter the ability to reach velocities over 2400 fps. [A 300gr bullet can travel 2200 fps with 3300 ft-lbs. of energy.]”

Remington claims its new system yields “centerfire-like performance and accuracy out of a muzzleloader” with “higher velocities, greater energy, and further effective range.” In addition, the primed casings are easier to handle in the field compared to small 209 shotshell primers. Spare primed cases can be stored in a compartment below the receiver (see below).

Remington Ultimate Muzzleloader

Two stocks are offered — a gray/brown laminated stock or a gray Bell & Carlson M40 fiberglass stock. Both versions come with a 26″ stainless barrel. On the laminated model the barrel is fitted with rifle sights front and rear. The Rem 700 muzzleloader features an adjustable X-Mark Pro trigger, factory-set at about 3.5 pounds pull weight.

M700 Ultimate Muzzleloader – Synthetic
26-inch SS Fluted Barrel
Bell & Carlson Medalist M40 Stock with Storage
X-Mark Pro® Adjustable Trigger, 2.5-5 Pounds
24 Primed Cases and 24 Projectiles
Ships in a Hard Case
MSRP – $1295
M700 Ultimate Muzzleloader – Laminate
26-inch SS Fluted Barrel with Rifle Sights
Laminate Stock with Primed Case Storage
X-Mark Pro® Adjustable Trigger, 2.5-5 Pounds
24 Primed Cases and 24 Projectiles
Ships in a Hard Case
MSRP – $1295
Permalink Hunting/Varminting, New Product 12 Comments »
April 24th, 2014

SSG Horner Wins USPSA Multi-Gun Nationals Overall Title

Soldiers from the U.S. Army Marksmanship Unit (USAMU) Action Shooting team won two titles at the 2014 U.S. Practical Shooting Association Multi-gun National Championships, April 18-20. SSG Daniel Horner won the 2014 overall title, while finishing first in the Tactical Ops Division for an unprecedented sixth time. USAMU teammate SGT Matthew Sweeney won the Heavy Metal Tactical Division.

dan horner USAMU USPSA National Championships

dan horner USAMU USPSA National ChampionshipsIt has been an impressive April for Horner. Daniel started off the month winning the U.S. Special Operations Command Int’l Sniper Competition with teammate SGT Tyler Payne. After that, he won his second straight 3-Gun Nation Pro Series Tour win before securing this latest national championship. The win marks Horner’s sixth national title in the Tactical Ops Division, the first shooter to ever accomplish that feat.

Even after six national titles and a ranking as one of the best sniper teams currently in the world, Horner said he’ll never get to a point where he thinks he knows it all.

“I learn something every day,” Horner concluded. “I can learn something from every single person shooting and use it to help someone else or help me.”

Unlike other competitions that focus on short-range shooting and shooting on the move, the Practical Shooting Association Multi-gun National Championships test shooters using odd-positions, barricades, stage planning, and long-range rifle targets in addition to moving quickly through stages.

“This year the shooting was difficult, but the speed at which you had to make the shots was so high that you couldn’t make any mistakes,” Horner said. “You would run out of shotgun ammo at some point if you missed one shot and (that’s a ten point penalty.)”

Horner and Sweeney Train Deploying Soldiers
Highlighting the difference between AMU shooters and their civilian counterparts, after the USPSA awards ceremony, Horner and Sweeney jumped on a plane to train soldiers preparing for deployment. The USAMU applies lessons learned from marksmanship competitions to training Soldiers for combat and raising the Army’s Marksmanship proficiency.

Permalink Competition No Comments »
April 23rd, 2014

Locate .22 LR Rimfire Ammo Today with GunBot.Net

accurateshooter.com gunbot.net ammo and reloading primers supplyHave you been struggling to find powder, primers, and .22 LR rimfire ammo? Well, now there’s a free web-based search service that can help you find what you need. The service costs nothing and you don’t have to sign up to run searches. We ran a quick search for .22 LR Ammo and found dozens of sources. We clicked the “in-stock only” option and ranked the results by price-per-round, low to high. Here’s what we found this morning — there were plenty of sources at $0.13-0.15 per round ($6.50-$7.50 per box), and Gander Mountain even had some Remington .22LR at $2.49 per box!

Click Box to ZOOM Image So You Can Read Results More Easily:

ammo rimfire search .22 LR

GunBot.net employs “search bots” to scour the internet for available inventories of ammo, powder, primers, brass and magazines. GunBot.net checks the inventories of over sixty retailers, including leading vendors AmmoMan, Bass Pro, Brownells, Cabelas, Cheaper Than Dirt, Grizzly, JG Sales, Dan Killough, Midsouth Shooters Supply, Midway USA, Powder Valley, Rainier Arms, Sinclair Int’l, Sportsman’s Guide,, Wholesale Hunter, and Wideners.

Results can be sorted by price or time (most recent results first). You can even get email alerts notifying you when the product you need is available. (To get alerts, you must first log-in and create an account with GunBot.net. There is no charge for this service.) GunBot.net’s search spiders work constantly, so results are normally very current. Pages auto-refresh when new “matching items” are found.

Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Hot Deals 14 Comments »
April 23rd, 2014

Taran Butler Wins 2014 USPSA Multi-Gun Nat’l Championships (Open Division)

Taran Butler USPSA OpenCongrats to Taran Butler, who won the Open Division title at the USPSA Multi-Gun National Championships held last week at the Desert Sportsman’s Range outside Las Vegas. Butler also won this event in 2012, becoming the first person in history to win all three USPSA Multi-Gun divisions: Open, Tactical, and Limited. This year, Taran packed some serious firepower, with extra-long magazines for both carbine and shotgun. Shown below is the rig Taran used to win the 2012 Open Class Nationals. Taran reports: “This is a custom AR that TTI built with parts from Vltor, LaRue, PRI, Surefire, Noveske, Trijicon, and JP. Its called the Taran Tactical Innovations 17″ Signature Series Rifle. The optics I use are the Trijicon TR24R 1-4 power and the RMR. This is by far the fastest optic setup on the planet.”

Taran Butler USPSA Open

In this video, Taran talks about multi-gun competition and how he maintains his drive to win even after having a bad stage. Top competitors like Taran are able to stay focused and come from behind to win.

Taran Butler Talks about the Multi-Gun Game

When he’s not competing at matches, or testing products for Taran Tactical Innovations, Butler works as a firearms expert in Southern California. He often works with celebrities, training Hollywood stars for action movie roles. Here he is with leading man Johnny Depp and songstress/actress Rihanna.

Taran Butler USPSA Open

Taran Butler USPSA Open

Permalink - Videos, Competition No Comments »
April 23rd, 2014

Installing a CG Trigger in A Wood Stock

Tech Tip by Mark LaFevers
Our “master fabricator” Mark LaFevers has installed some of the CG Mod 22 triggers from X-Treme Shooting Products. This is an excellent Two-stage Trigger for the Remington 700 type actions. Though advertised as a “drop-in”, Mark found some stock fitting was required when installing this unit in a wood stock. Here is Mark’s brief report.

CG Mod 22 Trigger Installation Tips
Having already installed a CG X-Treme trigger in my Borden-action Eliseo tube gun, I was looking forward to the same easy installation and adjustment process on a friend’s Remington 22-250 in a laminate varminter stock. Where there were no fit issues in the aluminum Eliseo stock, I had to relieve a fair amount of wood at the tang end of the laminate stock inletting. While not difficult, this took a little more time than I had anticipated, using a 3/8″ square file.

The end result was just as satisfying, a two-stage trigger fully independently adjustable with outstanding feel and sensitivity. The adjustment instructions for the CG Mod 22 trigger from X-Treme Shooting Products are clear and easy to follow.

I like to set the length of travel of the first stage long enough to define pulling up to the end of it clearly, with the second stage set just heavy enough that you don’t pull into it accidentally before you are ready. The trigger breaks very cleanly, helping to make the shot either on paper or hunting. It’s nice to find a two-stage trigger with this kind of precise adjustment that also has a safety — an important feature for a hunting gun.

Permalink Gear Review, Gunsmithing 4 Comments »
April 22nd, 2014

The Perils of Ultrasonic Cleaning — Some Advice on Bullet Seating

ultrasonic cleaningOur IT guy, Jay (aka JayChris in the Forum), was having some issues with his .260 AI. A load with known accuracy had suddenly and mysteriously stopped shooting well. Jay couldn’t figure out what was going wrong. Then he remembered he had cleaned his brass using a powerful ultrasonic machine.

He inspected his brass carefully and saw that the ultrasonically-cleaned necks were so “squeaky clean” that he was actually scratching the jackets on his bullets when seating them. As well, Jay noticed that it took more force to seat the bullets and the seating force became less uniform case to case. Jay solved the problem by applying NECO Moly dry-lube inside the necks of his brass before seating the bullets.

The Perils of Ultrasonic Brass Cleaning by JayChris
I rotate my brass so that I can keep track of each firing, so I keep a “clean/ready to load” bin and a “fired” bin. I have 400 pieces of .260 AI brass. So, all of it was on its first firing (after doing a Cream of Wheat fire-forming) until I hit the 400-round mark. To my surprise, things went south at the 500-round mark. The first time I noticed it (according to my range log) was at a match last year, when I dropped several points and had some vertical stringing issues. After that match, I had 400 rounds through the barrel and all of my brass had a single firing on it. So, it was time to clean.

ultrasonic cleaningI have used an ultrasonic cleaner for a while now. I recently got a more powerful Ultrasonic cleaner, although I don’t know if that makes a difference. My brass comes out dry and squeaky. Emphasis on the “squeaky”.

I found that my new US machine may have been getting the necks TOO clean. After ultrasonically cleaning my brass, I had noticed that it required a little more force to seat the bullets, but I didn’t really think too much about it. But then, after going over my ordeal with a shooting buddy and going over my process in minutiae, we had an “AH HA” moment when it came to cleaning (he uses good ol’ vibratory cleaning).

So, I used some moly dry-lube to pre-lube the case necks and took some rounds out to test at 200 yards. I used my last known good load and sure enough, the vertical flyers disappeared! I shot two, 10-rounds groups with .335 and .353 MOA vertical dispersion, which is consistent with the results I was originally getting.

Other folks have suggested necks may get “too clean” after ultrasonic cleaning. It was pretty sobering to actually witness, first hand, what can happen when brass is “too clean”. I had read some discussions of issues with neck friction/bullet seating after ultrasonic cleaning, but, frankly, I dismissed the idea. Now I understand. The “too clean” effect doesn’t seem to affect my Dasher at all (perhaps because Dasher necks are very short), but on the bigger .260 AI, it definitely does.

Close-Up Photos of Case-Necks

Here are photos Jay took with a microscope. You can see the difference between tumbled brass and ultrasonically-cleaned brass. Jay says: “Here, in sequence, are the Ultrasound-squeaky-clean case neck, a case neck after treatment with NECO moly dry-lube (you can see the particles that will help coat the neck during seating), and, finally, the neck from a case cleaned with corncob media in a vibratory tumbler. You can clearly see how much smoother the inside of the tumbled neck is. Yes, it’s dirty, but it’s also very, very smooth.

ultrasonic cleaning

ultrasonic cleaning

ultrasonic cleaning

Close-Up of Scratched Bullet

Here is a close-up of a bullet that was seated in an ultrasonically-cleaned (“squeaky clean”) neck, with no lubrication. You can clearly see the damage done to the jacket — in fact, in a couple spots you can see the lead core through the scratches! Jay also observed that quite a bit more seating force was required to seat the bullet in a “squeaky clean” neck.

ultrasonic cleaning

NOTE: The bullet jacket is naked — NOT coated in any way. It looks a little dark because of the shadow from the microscope lens, and the high contrast.
Permalink - Articles, Reloading 10 Comments »
April 22nd, 2014

Huge Discounts on Weaver Scopes at Natchez Shooters Supplies

Looking for a good, solid scope for your hunting or varmint rifle, but don’t want to spend more than $400.00? Here’s your opportunity. Natchez Shooting Supplies just slashed prices on the Weaver Classic Extreme Series of rifle scopes. This is a major price cut. Scopes that previously retailed for $500 or more are now being sold for $300-$350.00. Here’s an example, the Weaver Classic Extreme 8-32x50mm is going for $499.99 on eBay but Natchez has it for $349.95. And the Weaver 4-16x50mm Classic Extreme scope is now just $299.95, also marked way down from the original $500+ price. These scopes offer 30mm maintubes, 95% light transmission, multi-coated optics, and fast-focus eyepieces.

Quantities are limited and prices are subject to change. CLICK HERE for Natchez Sale Inventory.

Natchez Weaver Optics Sale

Sale Tip by EdLongrange. We welcome reader submissions.

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Permalink Hot Deals, Optics No Comments »
April 21st, 2014

Great Deal on Hornady L-N-L Auto-Progressive Press at Midsouth

Anyone who shoots 3-Gun matches, or who burns through a lot of pistol ammo, can benefit from a quality progressive reloading press. These machines have multiple stations with a rotating shell-holder plate that advances the cartridges. Once you’ve got everything set up and running, you can crank out hundreds of rounds per hour, producing a loaded round with every pull of the press handle.

Right now, Midsouth Shooter’s Supply is offering a great deal on the 5-Station Hornady Lock-N-Load AP (Auto-Progressive) reloading press. This high-quality machine, which sells for $450.00 or more elsewhere, is now ON SALE at Midsouth for just $389.99. To sweeten the deal even more, when you buy the L-N-L AP press you qualify for free bullets. That’s right — buy the Hornady AP Press and get 500 free bullets (retail value $70-$120).

Hornady L-N-L AP progressive press sale midsouth shooters supply

The video below, created by our friend Gavin Gear for UltimateReloader.com, illustrates the features and functions of the Hornady Lock-N-Load AP Press. You can see how the dies are positioned in the tool head, and how the rotating cartridge plate moves cartridges from station to station:

Video Demonstrates Hornady Lock-N-Load AP Press

Permalink Hot Deals, Reloading 2 Comments »
April 21st, 2014

Lauren Phillips wins Women’s Smallbore Junior Olympic Title

Based on Report by Lars Dalseide for NRABlog.com
I first read about Lauren Phillips in 2012. Back then she part of a spitfire quartet known as the West Seattle/Vashon Thunderbirds. Fresh off her team’s NRA National Junior Sectional victory, she decided to start taking a more serious approach her shooting career.

Lauren Phillips Nebraska

Since then, she hit the road for matches in Fort Benning, Georgia, Anniston, Alabama, Camp Perry, Ohio, and Colorado Springs, Colorado. What did that travel catalog get her? How about a scholarship to the University of Nebraska and a spot in the National Junior Olympic Shooting Championships. Once she earned that Junior Olympics spot, well, let’s just say she’s been difficult to stop. So much so that she walked away with the overall Women’s Three-Position Rifle title yesterday.

To get a full breakdown of Phillip’s performance at the National Junior Olympic Shooting Championships, take a look at the press release from USA Shooting:

Phillips Dominates Women’s Three-Position Rifle at NJOSC
No one could catch Lauren Phillips. Before she even stepped on the line for the Women’s Three-Position Rifle Final at the National Junior Olympic Shooting Championships (NJOSC), Phillips (Seabeck, Wash.) already had the title in the bag.

Phillips, a freshman at the University of Nebraska, built a dominating eight-point lead over the closest competitor in the 66-shooter field. Champions at this year’s NJOSC are determined through a modified selection format similar to that of USA Shooting’s National Championships: Points are awarded points earned in each day of competition with Nebraska freshman Lauren Phillips takes a moment at the National Junior Olympic Shooting Championships additional points awarded for performance in the Final – Eight for first, seven for second and so on. Phillips finished fifth in the Final, but it didn’t really matter.

“The Qualification was just like I was planning for – build an early lead so it takes the pressure of the Final,” Phillips said. “That’s just what I did. Went in Day One with a personal best and Day Two two points lower, but stayed consistent…I went in gunning for a record Final but it didn’t happen today. There were some excellent performances by my fellow collegiates.”

Lauren Phillips Nebraska

Permalink Competition, News No Comments »