November 22nd, 2014

Fifth Edition of Ammo Encyclopedia Now Available

Brussard ammunition encyclopedia 5th EditionBook by Michael Bussard (edited by S.P. Fjestad)

If you’re a serious shooter, the latest 5th Edition of the Ammo Encyclopedia (released in August, 2014), belongs in your library. This 1008-page book is probably the most comprehensive and up-to-date book in print covering current and obsolete cartridges and shotshells. Bussard’s Ammo Encyclopedia is a massive resource work. The 5th Edition now boasts 105 chapters, covering thousands of handgun, rifle, and shotgun cartridges from the past century and a half.

One of the best features is a 12-page color section depicting actual size drawings of 265 current rimfire/centerfire cartridges and shotshells. You won’t find that many “life-size” cartridge drawings in one place even on the internet. Cartridge profiles and ballistic charts have been expanded to include all new factory cartridges. The authors have even included air rifle pellets and historical images and charts. Softcover, 1008 pages.

Comments from guys who bought the book:

“This book contains a vast array of information on many modern and even obsolete ammunition. Definately recommend for any modern reloader novice or experienced.” – Duggaboy460

“It’s a great reference book for individuals who reload their own ammunition. There is a lot more info in this Edition. Everyone who likes this information should have it in their library.” – Reloader

“I like the general and technical comments that are available for each and every cartridge. Information that predicts if a cartridge will stay in production for many more years or rapidly become obsolete.” – RSL1

Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo No Comments »
November 21st, 2014

New Pistol from Taurus has Lights, Laser, Curved Frame

Taurus has introduced an innovative new DAO pistol, the “Taurus Curve”. This .380 ACP compact carry pistol ($392.42 MSRP) features a curved frame (see photos below). Seen from the rear, the grip curves inward (to the left). Seen from the front, the frame and grip (below the slide) curves to the right. The purpose of the curve is to make the gun fit more comfortably when carried in a pocket or inside the waistband. (The Curve comes with a built-in metal spring clip for inside-waistband carry).

Taurus Curve pistol CCW LED Laser

The extended front section of the Curve’s frame houses a red laser and a lamp with twin LEDs. That’s a smart feature on a carry pistol we think. Taurus claims the Curve is the first production pistol that combines both integrated LED lights and an aiming laser.

Taurus Curve pistol CCW LED Laser

The 10.2-ounce Curve is a tiny gun. With a 2.5″ barrel, the pistol measures just 5.2″ long and 3.7″ high. Width is 1.18″ inches, while the grip is just 0.88″ — very slim indeed. Capacity is 6+1 rounds of .380 ACP. There is no external, selectable safety, though the Curve does have a magazine disconnect and loaded chamber indicator.

GUNS Magazine was able to field-test an early production Taurus Curve. Reviewer Mark Kakkuri reports that the DAO Curve was reliable: “The 100 or so rounds I fired through the gun fed well and the empty cases ejected perfectly. The long trigger was decently smooth and the recoil, while sharp, was manageable. And not only was the gun a reliable shooter, it also hit where I aimed, thanks in part to its integrated light and laser.”

The reviewer also validated the Curve’s unique shape: “In my pocket, the Curve indeed fit comfortably, printing less than most other pocket pistols, looking sort of like a large wallet. In my waistband… the well-designed bend in the frame proved more comfortable than most other pistols this size.”

Taurus Curve pistol CCW LED Laser

Taurus Curve pistol CCW LED Laser

Permalink Handguns 4 Comments »
November 21st, 2014

Enter to Win Hornady Reloading Presses in Midsouth’s Contest

To promote its upcoming Black Friday Specials, Midsouth Shooters Supply is giving away three (3) Hornady Reloading Systems. You don’t need to purchase anything to enter the contest. Ten days from now Midsouth will select three lucky winners at random. The third prize winner gets a Hornady Lock-N-Load Classic Kit. The second prize winner receives a complete Lock-N-Load AP press. The luckiest person of all, the Grand Prize winner, will receive the impressive Lock-N-Load Ammo Plant, complete with bullet and case feeders. ENTER CONTEST HERE. Good luck!

To enter contest (for free) CLICK HERE to launch contest page.
Once you’re on that page, scroll down and fill in your contact information.

midsouth black friday sales

Permalink Hot Deals No Comments »
November 20th, 2014

LSU Develops Shooting System for Disabled Marksmen

Story by Kyle Jillson for NRABlog.com
The NRA Foundation is proud to support Louisiana State University’s Mobile Marksman Project, a system developed by the LSU Mechanical Engineering Capstone Design Program to help high-level quadriplegics to participate in the shooting sports. The nearly $2,200 grant funded the 2014 system, the team’s final design iteration.

Mobile Marksman disabled quadraplegic software LSU

Mobile Marksman disabled quadraplegic software LSUCreated in 2009, the Mobile Marksman Project is a manually-controlled shooting platform that allows handicapped hunters to aim and fire a mounted firearm with head-tracking software and a small tube that is activated with a puff of air.

Capstone Design Instructor Capt. Dave Giurintano and the Mobile Marksman team worked with high-level quadriplegics to address system requirements and create a lightweight, portable system that is simple to use and enjoy. Recent additions include recoil-absorbing legs and a rail-mounted camera that displays the crosshairs and target on a high-resolution digital screen.

“It has been our profound pleasure to have a hand in working on it, to extend the hunting and shooting experience to everyone, regardless of physical disability,” said Garen Armbruster, Mobile Marksman Team Leader.

Mobile Marksman disabled quadraplegic software LSU

Established in 1990, The NRA Foundation, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization that raises tax-deductible contributions in support of a wide range of firearm-related public interest activities of the National Rifle Association of America and other organizations. These activities are designed to promote firearm and hunting safety, to enhance marksmanship skills, and to educate the general public about firearms.

Permalink Hunting/Varminting, News No Comments »
November 20th, 2014

Big Discounts on Nightforce and Vortex Optics at Bullets.com

Nightforce makes great scopes — just ask the man who owns one. And Vortex offers scopes that offer exceptional “bang for the buck”. Here’s your chance to get a Nightforce NXS, or Vortex Viper PST scope at very low “close-out” prices from Bullets.com. The folks at Bullets.com tell us: “We are selling these at deals that are so low your viewers won’t be able to pass them up. We want this stock gone before the end of the year and have slashed prices to move it.” Here is a partial sample of the items on sale. NOTE: CLICK HERE to see the complete list of sale items, which include other lower-magnification Nightforce NXS scopes, as well as Vortex spotting scopes. Supplies are limited at these close-out prices.


Nightforce Scopes ON SALE (Partial sample)
Bullets.com nightforce vortex sale optics scopes

Vortex Scopes ON SALE (Partial Sample)
Bullets.com nightforce vortex sale optics scopes

Bullets.com nightforce vortex sale optics scopes

Online Shopping Tips
Before placing your order with Bullets.com, be sure you are 100% certain about the model you are ordering. Some scopes with the same magnification range come with a choice of either 50mm objective or 56mm objective. Likewise, there are various reticles offered for each basic model, and Nightforce offers 1/4 MOA clicks on some scopes, with 1/8 MOA clicks on others.

Permalink Hot Deals, Optics No Comments »
November 20th, 2014

Special Edition Ruger 10/22 Take-Down Rifle with Fitted Case

At AccurateShooter.com, we do love ultra-accurate rifles that can shoot quarter-MOA (and better) on a good day. It’s nice to own a state-of-the-art rig built with a custom action and premium hand-lapped barrel, fitted with high-end optics. Quality is its own reward.

ruger 10/22 take-down NRA .22 LROn the other hand, a truly utilitarian firearm has its own practical appeal. And perhaps no rifle is more utilitarian than a take-down .22 LR Ruger. Easy to store and carry, a take-down 10/22 makes a perfect “truck gun” for a ranch or farm. A 10/22 is also great for plinking with young family members, blasting pesky rodents, and doing general duty around your property. You can even use a take-down 10/22 in the CMP’s rimfire sporter matches.

Considering the merits of a take-down rimfire rifle, we were pleased to see that Davidson’s is now offering a Ruger 10/22 Takedown kit, with a special fitted NRA-branded Cordura soft case. The NRA logo and block letters are on the bolt-face, and the rifle comes with a natural gear camo finish. Street price is about $390.00, including the Cordura case.

The rifle comes with a Coyote Tan Cordura case, high-viz sights, a scope base adapter, and a drilled & tapped receiver. Separating the two halves of the rifle is easy. First lock the bolt back and verify the rifle is unloaded. Then push a recessed lever, rotate the sub-assemblies, and pull them apart. That’s it. The take-down locking system allows for a secure connection of the barrel and action and returns the firearm to zero, even when receiver-mounted optics are used.

ruger 10/22 takedown rifle NRA

ruger 10/22 take-down rifle .22 LR

Helping the Cause
For each rifle sold, both Davidson’s and Ruger contribute $10 to the NRA Institute for Legislative Action. So — if you purchase this package, you’ll be helping the effort to defend our Second Amendment rights. This exclusive NRA 10/22 Special Edition is available now at Davidson’s dealers nationwide and GalleryofGuns.com.

Permalink New Product No Comments »
November 19th, 2014

Shocking Video: M1 Garand Explodes in Woman’s Hands (Squib?)

Here’s a shocking video showing a massive Kaboom (KB) that literally destroyed an M1 Garand in the hands of a lady shooter. One second she has a classic .30-06 battle rifle in her arms, and the next second she has nothing but a pile of parts. She is fortunate to have survived this incident without apparent serious injury. She may have had a squib (undercharged round) in her prior shot at the 00:12 time-mark. At 00:15 it seems she may have experienced “click no bang” (we can’t tell for sure). The detonation occurs at time-mark 00:25, and is then replayed in slow-motion.

M1 Garand kaboomIf this Kaboom wasn’t caused by a squib, there might have been a catastrophic failure of the cartridge that failed to fire at 00:15. The shooter herself, posting as ArizonaGirl24 on YouTube, thinks the gun may have fired out of battery. What do you think?

Text accompanying the posting of this video on LiveLeak, states: “A woman, her shooting partner, and their cameraperson are lucky to be alive. Her M1 Garand detonated after she failed to check the barrel for an obstruction due to an apparent squib round….

[After the shot at 00:12] she is obviously aware that something is amiss and seems to check the chamber, but does not unload the rifle to check for the presence of a barrel obstruction.

She raises the rifle and fires it again, causing a catastrophic weapon failure. Parts of the weapon fly in all directions. The video then terminates.”

What happened to the shooter? She reported: “I was very lucky with the outcome. I have lots of splinters and bruising, but nothing broken. My left hand took the brunt of the blow to my wrist and palm of my hand. Still pretty painful, but I will be fine.”

LESSON ONE: If you experience any kind of malfunction, or what appears to be a light-recoiling (or soft-sounding) shot, you should STOP shooting immediately. Clear the firearm and check for barrel obstructions.

LESSON TWO: Always wear ear and eye protection when shooting any firearm, even rimfires.

LESSON THREE: With a semi-auto gun, ensure the bolt is completely in battery after every shot.

LESSON FOUR: When hand-loading check EVERY round for powder charges prior to seating bullets, and weigh your loaded rounds before boxing them. Also check for high primers on EVERY round. If using a progressive press, use a Lock-Out Die that will alert you to any under-loaded cartridge. Be wary of commercial reloads.

Video tip from Mark LaFevers. We welcome reader submissions.
Permalink - Videos, Tech Tip 6 Comments »
November 19th, 2014

Remove Military Primer Crimp with Wilson Primer Pocket Reamer

Many shooters, particular those who shoot vintage military rifle matches, reload once-fired military cartridge brass. This brass may be high-quality and stout, but you may encounter a primer crimp* that interferes with the seating of a new primer. There are a variety of dedicated, military-crimp tools on the market, such as Dillon’s excellent Super Swage 600 tool that “rolls the crimp away”. But the Dillon tool costs $100.95 and takes quite a bit of room on your reloading bench. If you don’t want to drop a C-note and give up valuable bench space — here’s another (much cheaper) solution.

If you already have a Wilson case trimmer set-up, you can ream away those military crimps using an affordable Wilson accessory — the Primer Pocket Reamer (large #PPR-210, small #PPR-175). This $32.99 accessory is used in conjunction with a Wilson case trimmer and case-holder as shown below.

Military crimp primer pocket reamer

Military crimp primer pocket reamer salazarIn the older Riflemans Journal website, the Editor, “GS Arizona”, shows how to use the Wilson primer pocket reamer to remove military crimps on Lake City .30-06 cartridge brass. He explains: “The case goes into the Wilson case-holder, the same one used for case trimming, and the reamer replaces the trimmer head in the tool base. The threaded rod on the left side, which is normally used to regulate trim length has no use for this operation and it is simply backed out. Hold the case-holder as you turn the reamer into the primer pocket, it cuts easily and quickly. The reamer will stop cutting when the proper depth is reached.”

Military crimp primer pocket reamerMilitary crimp primer pocket reamer salazar

Do you really need to do this operation with military-crimped brass? Yes, and here’s why: “any attempt to prime the case without removing the crimp will simply result in a mangled primer that cannot be expected to fire and certainly won’t fire reliably.”

Read Full Article on Riflemans’ Journal Website (more photos and detailed write-up).

*Why does military brass has a primer crimp? GS Arizona answers: “The crimp is nothing more than an intentional deformation of the case around the primer pocket, the purpose of which is to retain the primer in the case despite high pressure situations in machine guns and other automatic weapons where a loose primer may cause a malfunction. As reloaders, our task is to get rid of the remnants of the crimp in order to allow re-priming the case.”

Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Reloading 3 Comments »
November 18th, 2014

In Memoriam — Forum Member John Adams

It is with great sadness we announce the passing of John Adams of Fallbrook, Calfornia. One of our very first Forum members, John has been a stalwart supporter of this site for nearly a decade. He generously donated funds, reloading components, and equipment to our site, year after year, asking nothing in return. A modest man, John was also an innovator, who developed his own wildcat cartridges, designed reloading tools, and put together some great-shooting rifles.

John Adams Pala Silhouette

On Saturday, November 15, Johnny Adams (John’s son) sent out this message to John’s friends and acquaintances in the shooting community: “I have to inform everyone of the sad news that my father, John Adams, died unexpectedly this Saturday Morning. He has been battling cancer for a number of years and has finally succumbed to the disease. He has asked me to include this photo of him and asked that his friends remember him in this way.”

John was a very active benchrest shooter in Southern California, and one of the dedicated organizers of the monthly Varmint Silhouette Match in Pala, California. Shooting that match with John as my mentor was one of the most enjoyable highlights of my shooting career.

John Adams Pala SilhouetteThose of us who knew John would tell you he was a generous, good-hearted man who had a real love for shooting. I am honored to say John was my friend, and I will forever be grateful for the things he did to help this site get off the ground, and to help many new shooters get started. When I had a chance to shoot at the Pala Varmint Silhouette match, John took the time to help practice with me, and he even provided the rifle (a wickedly accurate 22 Dasher) and the ammunition!

Many years ago, John was involved as an owner of the SAECO company that made presses and other reloading equipment. He had a vast knowledge of shooting hardware, and he never gave up his avid interest in shooting-related product design and engineering. He remained interested in new products and new techniques until his last days. Just a few weeks ago he called me to chat about new developments in spotting scopes.

John, Rest in Peace old friend. We’ll miss your presence at our matches in California. You were a generous soul and a true friend of the shooting sports. The shooting community is much diminished by your passing….

John Adams Pala Silhouette

John Adams Pala Silhouette

Permalink News 4 Comments »
November 18th, 2014

Art by Eliseo — Hand-Applied “Tamifleck” Camo on Tubeguns

Tubegun Guru Gary Eliseo of Competition Machine will be offering a new finish option on his Eliseo chassis kits. Remarkably, this will be a true “custom camo” option, with hand-applied graphics. No two rifles will be exactly alike. Gary tells us: “My Daughter Tamira has joined us at the new shop in Arizona. She’s a gifted artist and has been doing great work on our custom paint jobs. I challenged her to come up with something original. She thought we could do something a little more unique than the cut stencil technique normally used with our Cerakote camo finishes. Needless to say, I was impressed with the outcome. We call her handiwork ‘Tamifleck’.” This combines a unique look with the rock hard durability of Cerakote. Each chassis finished with this special “Tamifleck” camo finish is truly one-of-a-kind.

Gary Eliseo Tamifleck tubegun Chassis camo camouflage cerakote

“Tamifleck” camo is Competition Machine’s newest Cerakote finishing technique for its rifles and chassis kits. Each “Tamifleck” chassis is hand-painted by Tamira Eliseo.

Gary Eliseo Tamifleck tubegun Chassis camo camouflage cerakote

Permalink Gunsmithing, New Product 2 Comments »
November 18th, 2014

$10K Grand Prize (with 4 Guns) in Sig P320 Take-A-Shot Contest

Sig-Sauer has commenced a contest with a Grand Prize that should make any gun guy (or girl) drool. The lucky winner of Sig’s P320 Take-a-Shot Contest will get a custom-fitted Pelican case with TWO Handguns, a 9mm MPX PSB, a 300 BLK MCX Carbine, mags, and more. You even get two cases of ammo (9mm and 300 BLK). Along with this Grand Prize, Sig is giving away twenty (20) P320 pistols.

Sig Sauer P320 contest Take a Shot

The Grand Prize will be awarded in a contest between two finalists. One finalist will be chosen based on the popularity of a video he (or she) creates. In addition, the Top 10 video entrants will each win a P320 9mm pistol. The video’s theme should be: “The P320 is Epic because (fill in the blank)”. Submit your video between now and November 30, 2014.

The second way you can be “in the running” for the Grand Prize is to submit a Sweepstakes Entry Form (no purchase required). Even if you’re not selected for the Grand Prize competition, you can win a valuable Sig handgun. For 10 business days from December 1 – December 12, Sig will give away one Sig P320 9mm pistol every day. From the ten winners, one will be chosen at random to win a trip to Las Vegas to compete for the Grand Prize.

The two (2) semi-finalists (one from the Sweepstakes Drawing and one from the Video Contest) will each win 5 days and 4 nights in Las Vegas. There they will compete one-on-one at the SIG SAUER Range Day on January 19, 2015 in the P320 Take-A-Shot Competition for the $10K Grand Prize.

Sig Sauer P320 contest Take a Shot

The Ultimate SIG SAUER Collection, worth over $10,000, comes in a Pelican Case filled with:
SIG 9mm MPX PSB (with two extra mags), SIG 300 BLK MCX Carbine (with two extra mags), M11-A1 Pistol, MK25 Pistol, P226 Threaded Barrel, M11-A1 Threaded Barrel. In addition the Grand Prize winner receives One Case of 9mm V-Crown™ JHP Elite Performance Ammo, and One Case of 300 BLK Elite Performance Ammo.

Permalink Hot Deals, News No Comments »
November 17th, 2014

Sierra Infinity 7 Ballistics Software — Video Shows Features

Sierra Bullets has released Version 7 of its respected Infinity Exterior Ballistics software, available now for $39.95 for Windows computers. Renowned Sierra Ballistic Consultants Ted Almgren and Dr. Bill McDonald, who have written all Sierra Software since 1970, also wrote Infinity Version 7. Both are retired scientists from a major aerospace company. Infinity Exterior Ballistics Software version 7 is a sophisticated solver that can output multiple trajectory charts. A built-in database includes bullets and cartridges offered by 15 manufacturers, both U.S. and foreign.

This 13-minute Video Demonstrates the Many Features of Infinity 7 Ballistics Software:

This sophisticated program computes the effects on the bullet trajectory of variations in firing conditions. For example, you can change altitude of the firing point, target angle (uphill/downhill), wind speeds, or even modify the Ballistic Coefficient. In fact, you can change any inputted firing condition or combination of conditions.

One very handy function is the “back-to-zero” calculation. Infinity 7 software will compute where your gun is zeroed if you know that it shoots high by a measured amount at a known range.

Sierra Infinity software

Compare Trajectories with Five Different Bullets
One very powerful feature of Infinity 7 is its trajectory comparison capability. With most ballistics programs (such as the JBM online ballistics calculator), you can only view one bullet’s trajectory (and associated drop chart) at a time. Not so with Infinity 7. This software handles up to five different bullets at a time. You can compare downrange velocity, energy, drop, bullet path height, or crosswind drift with results shown in bolt tabular and graphical format. That helps you select the best bullet for your gun and application. The ability to compare downrange ballistics of five different bullets at once is particularly helpful for hunters, who can compare the “hitting power” of different projectiles at various distances.

You can purchase Infinity 7 Ballistics Software as a standalone product for $39.99, or you can buy the Infinity 7 Suite for $59.95, which includes the Sierra Bullets 5th Edition Reloading Manual on CD-ROM. If you prefer a printed loading Manual, a combo pack with Infinity 7 software CD-ROM plus published (hard-back) Reloading Manual is offered for $64.95.

Permalink - Videos, Bullets, Brass, Ammo 3 Comments »
November 17th, 2014

Skill Training: Shooting with Both Eyes Open

Julie Golob Shoot Book Eyes openThere are many benefits to shooting with both eyes open especially when shooting shotguns and handguns, but training yourself to do it can be challenging for some. For many, it is a struggle to fight the natural instinct to close one eye. So how do you train yourself to kick that habit?

How to Train to Keep Both Eyes Open
The first step is to determine if you can see the sights with both eyes. If you can’t get a clear sight picture on target with both eyes open, or if you see two front sights or some other strange configuration that is nearly impossible to decipher, then shooting with both eyes open may not work for you. It’s not the end of the world. It’s more important that you acquire a proper sight picture and hit your target.

SHOOTing Tip - How to Train to Keep Both Eyes OpenIf you are a competition shooter that struggles with this you can get a little help from some frosted tape. In most cases it; just a matter of determining your eye dominance and placing a piece of tape on your eye protection on the lens in front of your non-dominant eye. The tape blocks this eye from seeing the sights, but still allows you full access to your peripheral vision.

An effective way to prevent yourself from closing an eye is to spend a good amount of time dry firing. (Dry fire means NO AMMO!) Practice acquiring the sights with both eyes open. Start with the firearm at low ready with both eyes on the target. Bring the gun up to your line of sight and acquire the proper sight picture on your target. The repetition of presenting the gun will help train you to keep those eyes open when you transition to live fire. As with any habit, you’ll need to train yourself to stop — this means more than just a few times dry firing.

When you hit the shooting range, you may find that despite all that dry-fire practice, you still close an eye. It might be a matter of sympathetic reaction to recoil. Using .22 caliber, airsoft guns and light loads can help you transition to larger calibers and full power ammunition. Just as you had to concentrate keeping both eyes open in dry fire, it’s likely you will have to do the same during your live fire training as well.

For more shooting tips visit www.JulieGolob.com and also read my book, SHOOT: Your Guide to Shooting and Competition. It’s available in print and eBook formats from these vendors:

SHOOT is available at Barnes & Noble! SHOOT is available on Nook! SHOOT is available on iTunes! SHOOT is available on Kindle! SHOOT is available at Amazon! SHOOT is available at Brownells!

Permalink Shooting Skills 1 Comment »
November 16th, 2014

Chuck’s Dazzling Dasher Duo — A Pair of Beauties

Forum Member Chuck L. (aka “Ridgeway”) has created a handsome duo of 6mm Dashers for competitive benchrest and varmint matches in Pennsylvania. Both guns are built on Kelbly Panda RBLP actions, with Bartlein 8-twist barrels, and Shehane Laminated Tracker Stocks. However, the two rifles are not exact twins, as you can see. One, which we’ll call the Big Dasher, is built on a Shehane ST1000 Tracker stock. The other gun, the Small Dasher, sports Shehane’s “Baby Tracker” stock — a design used with great success by Richard Schatz. The Big Dasher, optimized for 1000-yard competition, also has a slightly longer freebore — 0.136″ vs. 0.104″ for the Small Dasher.

6mm Dasher Shehane duo

6mm Dasher Shehane duo

Chuck tells us: “I don’t get out shooting competition as much as I want due to time and family, but when I do compete, I shoot a Groundhog match at Southfork Rifle Club in Beaverdale, PA. Info on Southfork Club events can be found at Southforkrifleclub.com. The Southfork match is basically a 100-, 300- and 500-yard match with one sighter the entire match and 5 shots at each yardage for score. The Small Dasher, with the shorter ‘Baby Tracker’ stock, was set up for the Southfork Rifle Club’s ‘Light Unlimited’ class which has a 13.5-lb max weight.” (Editor: ‘unlimited’ is a misnomer for a weight-limited category.)

Chuck adds: “The Big Dasher with the heavy ST-1000 stock is set up for 1000-yard benchrest matches in Light Gun class. I hope to shoot a couple 1K matches with it at Reade Range in southwest Pennsylvania. I am still in load development for this rifle since it was just finished in January. One ironic thing is, it shoots the same load I’m shooting out of the lighter gun rather well. The only difference between the two chambers is the freebore is roughly thirty thousandths longer on the 1K gun (Large Dasher). I will also shoot this at Southfork in the ‘Heavy Unlimited’ class.”

6mm Dasher Shehane duo

Specifications for the Dasher Duo:

Small Dasher (13.5-pounder): Chambered for 6mm Dasher with approximately .104 freebore and a .264 NK. (No way of knowing exactly since it freebore was done in a separate operation by Kelbly.) Components are: Shehane Baby Tracker stock, Kelbly Panda RPLB action, Bartlein 1:8″ LV barrel at 26 ¾”, Kelbly Rings, Weaver T36, Jewell trigger. The barrel was chambered by Kelblys and the stock was bedded, glued and balanced by a shooting buddy (Forum Member johara1). I clear-coated the stock with auto urethane. Total weight is 13 lbs., 4 ounces.

Big Dasher (1K Light Gun, 17-pounder): Chambered for 6mm Dasher with a .136 freebore and .264 neck (PTG Reamer). Components are: Shehane ST-1000 stock, Kelbly Panda RPLB action, Bartlein 1:8″ HV 5R barrel at 28″, Shehane +20-MOA rings, Nightforce NXS 12-42x56mm, Jewell trigger. The barrel work, pillar installation, and bedding was done by Dave Bruno. The stock was clear-coated by Chuck with auto urethane. Chuck also made the rear butt plate and balanced the rifle. Total weight: 16 lbs., 13 ounces.

Dasher Case-Forming: Neck-Turn then Fire-form with Bullets Hard in Lands
To fireform, I turn my cases down to fit the chamber and stop where the false shoulder makes snug contact with the chamber. Fire-forming rounds are loaded up with a 29-grain charge of H4895 or Varget and a 108gr Berger bullet seated hard into the lands about 0.020″ past initial contact with the rifling. It takes about three firings to make a nice clean Dasher case with a sharp shoulder. I anneal about every 3-4 firings. I have many cases that have about 10+ firings on them and they are still shooting well. The primer pockets are a little looser, but still hold a primer.

6mm Dasher case fire-forming fireform

Both Dashers Group in the Ones at 100 Yards
My main bullet for both rifles is the 107gr Sierra MK, loaded with Reloder 15 powder, Lapua cases and CCI 450 primers. My main load for the Small Dasher is 33.0 grains of Reloder 15. This load shoots in the ones at 100 yards. For the Big Dasher, I’m still working on a load, although the same 33.0 grain load shoots in the ones in the heavier gun as well. I’m still looking for more velocity and my ‘max’ node. So far, I’ve gone well above 33.0 grains of RL 15 without pressure signs, but that load produces vertical at 100 yards, so I’m going to tinker with the load until I see pressure or it starts to shoot.

Permalink Gunsmithing, Hunting/Varminting 4 Comments »
November 16th, 2014

Advanced Reloading: Controlling Cartridge Powder Column Height

Most of us assume that if we weigh our powder carefully (down to the tenth of a grain or less) we can achieve a uniform powder fill from case to case in our handloads. Weighing does ensure that the weight of the propellant in each case is the same, but is the column of powder the same by volume each time? “Not necessarily” is the answer. An interesting experiment by our friend Boyd Allen demonstrates that the manner in which you place kernels in the case can make a significant difference in the height of the powder column within the brass case.

Using a Gempro 250 scale, Boyd measured exactly 30.6 grains of Vihtavuori N-133 powder. He then inserted this powder in the same cartridge case multiple times. (The case has a fired primer in place.) But here is the key — Boyd used various filling techniques. He did a slow fill, and a fast fill, and he also experimented with tapping and drop tubes. What Boyd discovered was that you can start with the exact same weight of powder (in fact the very same set of kernels), yet end up with vary different fill heights, depending on how you drop the kernels into the case. Look at the photos. Despite variations in lighting, the photos show the same 30.6 grains of powder, placed in the same cartridge, with four different methods.

Boyd Explains the Procedure Used for his Experiment.

EDITOR’s NOTE: So there is no misunderstanding, Boyd started with a weighed 30.6 grain charge. This identical charge was used for ALL four fills. After a fill the powder was dumped from the case into a pan which was then used for the next fill technique to be tried. So, the powder weight was constant. Indeed the exact same kernels (of constant weight and number) were used for each fill.

Boyd writes: “I used the same powder for all fills, 30.6 gr. on a GemPro 250 checked more than once. All fills employed the same RCBS green transparent plastic funnel. The fast drop with the funnel only overflowed when it was removed from the case neck, and 15 granules of powder fell on the white paper that the case was sitting on. The fast-funnel-only drop with tapping, was done with the funnel in place and the case and funnel in one hand, while tapping the case body with the index finger hard, many times (about 20 fast double taps). My idea here was to “max out” the potential of this tapping technique.

The slow drop with the funnel and 10″-long .22 cal. Harrell’s Precision drop tube, was done by holding the scale pan over the funnel and tapping the spout of the pan repeatedly on the inside of the funnel about 1/3 down from the top, with the scale pan tilted just enough so that the powder will just flow. Many taps were involved, again, to max out the technique.

Again, to be clear, after each case filling, the powder was poured from the case back into the scale pan carefully. You may notice the similarity between the fast drop with the drop tube, and the funnel only with tapping. Although I did not photograph it, fast tube drop and tapping (combined) improved on tapping alone, but only to about half as far down the neck as the slow with drop tube. Due to the endless possible permutations, I picked four and left it at that.

I believe that I can make the rough judgment that the scale pan funnel and drop tube technique, which involved a longer drop period, and probably less velocity at the top of the tube, left more room in the top of the case neck than the slow drop from the measure with the same drop tube. You have both pictures, so you can make the comparison.” — Boyd

Does Powder Column Height Variance Make a Difference?
Boyd’s experiment proves pretty conclusively that the method of dropping a given weight of powder can affect the height of the powder column in the case and the degree of powder compression (when a bullet is seated). He showed this to be true even when the exact same set of kernels (of constant weight) was used in repetitive loadings. This raises some interesting questions:

1. Will subsequent cartridge transport and handling cause the powder to settle so the variances in powder column height are diminished?

2. If significant inconsistencies in powder column height remain at time of firing, will the difference in fill level hurt accuracy, or result in a higher extreme spread in velocity?

3. Is there any advantage (beyond increased effective case capacity) for a tight (low level) fill vs. a loose (high level) fill?

We don’t know the answer to these follow up questions. This Editor guesses that, if we tested low-fill-height rounds vs. high-fill-height rounds (all with same true fill quantity by weight), we might see meaningful differences in average velocity. I would also guess that if you fired 10 rounds that exhibited quite a difference in powder column heights, you might see a higher ES/SD than if you shot 10 rounds loaded with a very consistent powder column height (either high or low). But further testing is needed to determine if these predictions are true.

Permalink Reloading, Tech Tip 6 Comments »
November 16th, 2014

Motivational Advice from Eley’s Champion Shooters

Eley sponsors many of the world’s top rimfire shooters, who have shared their Tips from the Top for 2014. Five ace smallbore shooters provide advice on how to shoot better, how to train more effectively, and how to stay motivated even when “the going gets tough”. If you’re a competitive shooter (in any discipline) you can benefit from reading these words of wisdom from world-class shooters.

Eley champions shooting tips

Henri Junghaenel, current world #1 ranked, 50M prone rifle shooter.

    Focus on Fundamentals: Good performance requires a solid technical foundation. One can hunt after personal bests or one can try to work on the technical basics. The latter will probably lead to better results sooner.

    Stay Motivated Over Time: Be persistent and don’t lose your motivation on your way to success. Shooting, like every other sport, requires a learning process which takes a lot of time.

    Don’t Yield to Outside Pressures: Don’t let the expectations from others impact yourself. If some people try to put pressure on you (consciously or unconsciously), don’t let them!

Bill Collaros, 2013 Australian WRABF World Cup (Benchrest) and RBA team captain.

    Don’t Skimp on Hardware: Ensure your equipment is a good as you can buy. This includes: rests, bags, rifle, scope, and ammunition.

    Tune to Your Ammo: Ensure that the ammunition you have is tested and your rifle is tuned to it, to get the smallest possible group.

    Train in All Conditions: Train in all sorts of wind and conditions so you know how your rifle and ammunition react in all circumstances.

Stine Nielsen, 2012 Olympic finalist for 3-Position Smallbore Rifle.

    Eley champions shooting tips

    No Excuses: When I train, I train by my motto: “A loser has excuses. A winner has a plan.” And when I shoot in competitions I think about that mantra.

    Stay Focused: When I stand at a shooting range, I have a good focus on my shooting and myself. I also have a good will to want to shoot 110%.

Zorana Arunovic, current world #2 ranked, 25M women’s pistol shooter.

    Never give up: No matter how hard it is you should always find something that will inspire you to keep going further. I find my inspiration in the success of other athletes. They inspire me to work more and harder. I would say to any young athletes, never give up, no matter how hard it is.

João Costa, current world #2 ranked, 50m pistol shooter.

    Breathing is Key: In shooting as in life, breathing is of paramount importance. So, when shooting try to be calm and quiet. On the bench in front of me I have my pistol, the scope, the magazine and my choice ammo then I count:

    1… Eley – breathe
    2… Eley – breathe
    3… Eley – breathe
    4… Eley – breathe
    5… Eley – breathe

Story find by EdLongrange. We welcome reader submissions.
Permalink Shooting Skills No Comments »
November 15th, 2014

UltimateReloader.com Reloading Cost Calculator

How much can you save reloading your own ammo? Well that depends on the cost of components and how much you have invested in your reloading gear. UltimateReloader.com has created a handy online Reloading Costs Calculator that lets you quickly compare the cost of reloaded ammo vs. factory ammo. Just enter the costs of powder, primers, bullets, and brass, and the Calculator will tell you the cost per round, per 20-rd box, per 50-rd box, and cost per thousand. Note — when setting the price of the brass you need to divide the initial cost by the number of predicted reloads. For example if you have 500 pieces of brass that cost $40/100 to buy ($200 total), but you get 8 reloads per case, then you put $25.00 in the Calculator ($200 total brass cost divided by 8).

ultimate reloader cost calculator

True Reloading Cost Should Include Amortized Tool Expenses
Ah… but there is a catch. To understand the true cost of reloading, you also need to consider the costs of your tools and accessories, amortized over the tools’ loading lifespan. Let’s say you have $1000.00 invested in presses, dies, tumblers, measuring tools and other accessories, with a residual value of $500.00 (upon resale). If you load 5,000 rounds with those tools over their lifespan, you need to add $0.10 per round for tooling costs (your investment minus residual value, divided by the number of rounds loaded). The UltimateReloader.com Calculator does not include amortized tooling costs, but that’s something you can easily figure out on your own.

Excellent Resource for Reloading Videos
After you’ve tried out the Reloading Costs Calculator, check out the other content on UltimateReloader.com. This site features some of the best gun-related “how-to” videos on the internet. With sharp video and clear audio, the production quality is very high. If you use a progressive press (Dillon, Hornady, RCBS), you should definitely watch UltimateReloader.com’s videos — you’ll probably learn a new trick or two. In the sample video below, you can see how Hornady’s new Bullet Feeder works with its Lock-N-Load Progressive press.

YouTube Preview Image
Permalink - Videos, Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Reloading 8 Comments »
November 15th, 2014

Black Friday Bonanza — Scan Multiple Sales with One Website

black friday saleOn “Black Friday”, the day after Thanksgiving, stores nationwide offer big discounts on merchandise. There are some amazing deals to be had in retail outlets — if you’re willing to fight hordes of crazed consumers.

Thankfully, many smart merchants now offer Black Friday deals online, so you can avoid the mobs. Traditionally, electronics, video games, clothing, toys, and home furnishings are discounted deeply on Black Friday. But there are also many money-saving opportunities on guns, shooting accessories, hunting gear, and reloading supplies.

To aid your Black Friday deal hunting, SlickGuns.com has assembled a list of gun- and shooting-related Black Friday bargains and special promotions. On the SlickGuns’ Black Friday 2014 Deal Page you’ll find a long list of Black Friday sale items including air guns, handguns, ammunition, reloading gear, gun safes, hunting gear and much more. SlickGuns.com also has scans of the Black Friday print flyers so you can see deals that may not be listed on websites.

CLICK HERE for Gun-Related Black Friday Deals

slickguns.com black friday

Outdoor gear vendors offering Black Friday Sales/Promotions include Bass Pro Shops, Big 5, Brownells, Cabela’s, Dick’s Sporting Goods, Gander Mountain, Sports Authority, Sportsman’s Warehouse, Walmart (and more). On the SlickGuns.com website, you can access all Black Friday Specials with one click, and then narrow your search by vendor, product category, or price.

Permalink Hot Deals No Comments »
November 14th, 2014

Whidden Gunworks Bullet Pointing Die System

Gear Review by GS Arizona

This article originally appeared in the Rifleman’s Journal website.
Many of you have doubtlessly read Bryan Litz’s articles in our Daily Bulletin and on his Applied Ballistics website about various current long-range bullets. Bryan’s work carries a great deal of weight in the world of ballistics, so his comments (and mathematical proofs) regarding the benefits of bullet pointing certainly caught my attention. Bullet pointing, like meplat trimming, is an effort to reduce the ballistic inconsistency created by the somewhat jagged tip of the jacket where the bullet forming dies bring it to a point in the manufacturing process. Of course, we could eliminate this problem altogether by shooting closed-tip, open-base bullets like the Lapua D46, but that merely shifts the jacket problem to the other end of the bullet.

Whidden Bullet pointer tool

In any event, hollow point bullets rule the accuracy world today, so John Whidden, multi-time National Long Range Champion at Camp Perry and a talented gunsmith and designer to boot, came up with a very handy tool to let us make those hollow points pointier. Let’s have a look at John’s tool and see how it works.

Whidden Bullet pointer tool

The Whidden Bullet Pointing Die System uses a Forster bullet seating die body as its basic structure and that’s a good choice given the quality machining Forster does on these. The real heart of the tool comes in two parts: the caliber sleeve and the pointing die that fits inside the sleeve. In fact, to point up different caliber bullets, you only need to change the caliber sleeve, everything else remains the same. The last item is the bullet base that slips into a standard .308 shellholder and supports the bullet as it goes into the die body.

Whidden Pointing dieIt took me less than five minutes to get everything set up, including changing the caliber sleeve from 6mm to .30 caliber. John’s instruction sheets are well illustrated and clearly written; you should have no problem getting up and running.

Pointing the bullets is as easy as sizing a piece of brass. You can see in the top photo the difference between a few pointed bullets and a few un-pointed ones. The innermost pointed bullet in the picture was my first attempt and I adjusted the die a little after that, you can see that the others are closed a little more. John even includes a couple of sample bullets so that you can see one done right and one done wrong. That is a nice addition that can help you achieve the desired results.

I think Bryan’s work supports the validity of this concept and John’s tool puts it into practice in a simple-to-use manner that makes it just about impossible to do any damage to the bullet. I have shot pointed bullets in various calibers at many matches now. Pointing is not a “miracle cure”, but I believe that pointing bullet tips can produce long-range accuracy gains, through reduced vertical dispersion, for many popular types of match bullets. The Whidden Bullet Pointing Die System retails for $220.00 (with one insert). Additional die inserts are $42.00 each. Extra caliber sleeves are also $42.00. You can purchase directly from Whidden Gunworks, or from Sinclair International.

Whidden Bullet pointer tool

Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Reloading, Tech Tip 11 Comments »
November 14th, 2014

Harris Bipods on Sale at Midsouth Shooters Supply

Got Bipod? If you’re in need of an adjustable two-legged friend for the front of your favorite rifle(s), Midsouth has you covered. Right now Midsouth Shooters Supply has a wide selection of Harris Bipods in stock at attractive prices. For example, the Harris 6″-9″ BR model with leg notch is just $69.68. That’s ten bucks cheaper than we’ve found elsewhere. From small to tall, Midsouth carries Harris bipods for your intended applications. Midsouth also sells a variety of authentic Harris mounting adapters, including rail adapters, and flat fore-end adapters.

Midsouth Shooters Supply Harris Bipod Sale BR Swivel

Midsouth Shooters Supply Harris Bipod Sale BR Swivel

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