January 31st, 2015

Have Barn, Will Shoot — Barn Benchrest in Luray, VA

APO Ashbury smallbore .22 LR rimfire benchrest poultry

Low-BC bullets launched from a .22 LR gun are easily blown around by the wind. That’s why it’s a smallbore shooter’s dream to shoot indoors, where fickle wind currents are less likely to spoil your shots. Not many folks have the opportunity to shoot indoors at all, must less compete in an indoor match. However, a crew from Ashbury Precision Ordnance recently got the chance to try out their rimfire rifles in a indoor setting, a converted poultry barn to be precise. And today they’ll be competing in a smallbore “Barn Benchrest” match at that same barn. Looks like fun!

APO Ashbury smallbore .22 LR rimfire benchrest poultry

Could this be the beginning of a new “Barn Benchrest” league? The folks at Ashbury tell us: “Rube, Gary, and Matt headed over the mountains to Luray, Virginia, to get in some practice for [Saturday’s] .22 Cal Benchrest Rifle Match. It’s colder than a well diggers’ butt outdoors, but shooting a match indoors, in a converted poultry barn, is nice. As always, we’re shooting great RUAG/RWS ammo!”

APO Ashbury smallbore .22 LR rimfire benchrest poultry

Poultry Barn aka Piney Hill Benchrest Facility
The official name of this converted barn is the Piney Hill Benchrest facility. Virginia State 3-Gun Rimfire BR Championships will be held there February 20-21, 2015, while the IR50/50 Indoor Sporter Nationals are scheduled for Piney Hill in March. If you’re curious, the benches are made from cement blocks with wood tops, so they’re very solid. Here’s a panorama photo of the Piney Hill Barn.

Click image for full-screen version:

Permalink Competition, News 5 Comments »
January 31st, 2015

SHOT Show: Featured Optics from Schmidt & Bender

Schmidt & Bender PMII light transmission Polar

Schmidt & Bender revealed some impressive optics at SHOT Show. Perhaps the “star” of the S&B line-up was the 3-27x56mm PMII. This optic boasts the first-ever 9 times zoom range. Originally custom-designed to U.S. SOCOM specs, this impressive optic won a contract for use in SOCOM sniper platforms. S&B’s representative said this scope, when employed with steep-angled bases, may be used to engage targets at distances exceeding 2 kilometers.

Unrivaled Brightness — T96 Polar Offers 96% Total Light Transmission
Schmidt & Bender also unveiled its all-new 2.5-10x50mm Polar T96 scope, which S&B claims is “the brightest low-light hunting scope in the world” Designed for hunting, the new Polar boasts extremely high 96% light transmission levels, the most ever in a 10-power scope. In addition, transmission of “night-relevant wavelengths” has been improved dramatically, offering 5% more light in the evening than other hunting scopes. This means the scope will be brighter at dusk than other optics, effectively extending a hunter’s usable time in the field, allowing the hunter to use “the last light of the day.” S&B is considering expanding the T96 scope line to include 3-12X or 4-16X models.

Schmidt & Bender PMII light transmission Polar

Schmidt & Bender had scores of scopes on display, worth well over $100,000 in retail value.
Schmidt & Bender PMII light transmission Polar

Permalink New Product, Optics 5 Comments »
January 30th, 2015

Why Shoot a 300 Blackout? Kirsten Provides Some Answers

.300 AAC blackout blk

In her latest video, Kirsten Joy Weiss shows off the 300 AAC Blackout, a popular .30-caliber cartridge for AR-platform rifles. Kirsten explains the advantages for the 300 BLK for hunters as well as those using an AR for self-defense. The 300 BLK is popular with suppressor owners because it works well with heavy bullets launched at subsonic velocities.

Reasons to Shoot a 300 AAC Blackout:

— You can use your current AR Bolt, Bolt Carrier, Buffer, and Magazine. The only part you need to change is the barrel.
— 300 BLK conforms to state hunting regulations which may require a cartridge larger than .22 Caliber. The 300 BLK shoots .308 caliber bullets.
— Lapua now sells 300 AAC Blackout brass so no case-forming is required. Just load and shoot.
— You can shoot light bullets supersonic or heavier bullets subsonic. The subsonic capabilities of the 300 BLK make it ideal for use with a suppressed AR.
— With a .30-caliber bore and a modest powder charge, barrel life is outstanding with the 300 BLK.
— You can make 300 BLK cartridges from fired .223 Rem brass, which is plentiful and cheap.
— The .300 BLK performs well with some very accurate powders, such as Hodgdon H4198 and IMR 4227.

300 BLK Dan Horner

The 300 AAC Blackout was created by Advanced Armament Corp. and Remington primarily for the military as a way to shoot .30-caliber bullets from the M4/AR15 platform while using standard magazines. As explained by Robert Silvers, AAC’s R&D Director: “Now there is a way to shoot 30 caliber from your AR while still using normal magazines with full capacity. Even the bolt stays the same, and all that changes is the barrel.” For more information visit www.300aacblackout.com and download the 300 BLK Cartridge Information Guide (PDF).

300 AAC Blackout SAAMI Diagram
300 Blackout SAAMI Cartridge Specification

SAAMI, the industry standards organization, adopted and standardized the AAC 300 Blackout in 2010. The SAAMI diagram for the 300 BLK is shown above. Lapua now makes 300 BLK cartridge brass.

300 BLK Blackout AAC Lapua brass cartridge

300 BLK for 3-Gun Competition
The 300 AAC Blackout has been touted as an important new hunting round, but we see it more as a specialized “rule-beater” 30-cal option that lets 3-Gun competitors “make major” with a low-recoil cartridge that also offers long barrel life. For those who need to run a .30-caliber cartridge from a standard AR15 platform (as opposed to the AR10), the 300 AAC Blackout makes some sense. But for hunters using a bolt gun, there are any number of tried and true options, such as the 7.62×39, .30-30, and, of course, the .308 Winchester (7.62×51 NATO).

Permalink - Videos, Bullets, Brass, Ammo 14 Comments »
January 29th, 2015

Reloading 101: Seven Fundamental Safety Guidelines

seven reloading safety tips powder primers brownells manual

You can never be too safe when hand-loading your own ammunition. This helpful Brownells video outlines the Seven Fundamental Reloading Safety Tips. This is important information for novice hand-loaders and a good refresher for those with reloading experience!

Summary of the Seven Safety Tips:

1. Store your reloading supplies in a safe and dry location, away from children and away from any possible source of ignition. This includes keeping your powder and primers separate.

2. Get and use respected reloading manuals, especially for new cartridges. Start low and work up slowly while watching for warning signs of pressure and/or case fatigue.

3. Locate your reloading activity where you will not be distracted. If you get interrupted, stop. (Distractions will eventually lead to mistakes.)

4. Do NOT mix powders. Keep your powders clearly marked and dated. You can use masking tape to write the date on the container.

5. If you load the same cartridge type for different firearms, make sure your ammo headspaces properly in each gun.

6. Check cases frequently. Look for split necks, case head separation or other signs of fatigue and excessive pressure.

7. If reloading military brass, be aware that case capacity is usually reduced, and initial loads should be at least 10-15% lower than published data.


Here are some other tips that will help your avoid making costly mistakes (such as using the wrong powder, or undercharging a case):

  • Powder Type — Always double-check the label on your powder containers. After placing powder in the powder measure, put a piece of tape on the measure with the powder type written on it. Some guys write the powder type on a card and place that right in the hopper.
  • Scale Drift — Electronic balances can drift. If you are using a digital powder scale, calibrate the scale with a test weight every 50 rounds or so.
  • Case Fill — If you throw more than one charge at a time, look INSIDE every case before seating a bullet. Squib charges can be dangerous if you don’t notice them before firing the next round.
  • Progressive Presses — When using a progressive press, consider using an RCBS Lock-Out Die. This will detect a low charge and stop the machine. These dies will work with RCBS, Hornady, and Dillon progressives.
Permalink Reloading No Comments »
January 29th, 2015

NEW “Loaded M1A” with Precision Adjustable Stock

Springfield Armory M1A M14 Camp Perry Loaded adjustable stock

Springfield Armory has taken the M1A into the 21st Century with an adjustable modular stock that makes this classic semi-auto rifle more versatile than ever. The adjustable stock on this Loaded M1A (MP9826, MSRP $2,021) offers many cool features. You can raise/lower the cheek-piece with a handy rotary knob. Likewise the buttplate can be moved in and out with a quick-adjusting knob, allowing length-of-pull adjustment up to 1.3 inches. The toe of the stock features a bag-rider section, making the gun more stable on a sandbag. Up front you’ll find an accessory rail plus a forward-angled swivel stud allowing easy bipod mounting. The included iron sights feature half-minute adjustments for windage and 1-MOA adjustments for elevation. The 22″ stainless steel barrel has a 1:11″ twist. Rifle weight with an empty magazine is 11.25 lbs.


At the 2015 SHOT Show, Rob Leatham runs through Springfield Armory’s new Loaded M1A Series rifle with an adjustable stock (MP9826, MSRP $2,021).

Click Image to See Full-Size Photo
Springfield Armory M1A M14 Camp Perry Loaded adjustable stock

Springfield Armory M1A M14 Camp Perry Loaded adjustable stock

MIA Match at Camp Perry is Popular
In 1974, Springfield Armory began offering a civilian-legal, semi-automatic version of the M14 known as the M1A™. M1As have enjoyed some success in Service Rifle and High Power Competition but today most Service Rifle shooters use the lighter-recoiling AR-platform black rifles. Nonetheless the M1A remains popular with American shooters and the annual M1A Match at Camp Perry offers serious, big-time prize money, thanks to Springfield Armory. In 2014 over $25,000 worth of cash and gear was awarded to Camp Perry M1A competitors, making the M1A Match the richest single rifle event at the NRA National Championships.

Springfield M1A match Camp Perry
Nick Till in 2009 M1A Match. Nick was the 2007 Service Rifle Nat’l Champion. Photo courtesy NRA Blog.

Permalink Competition, New Product 2 Comments »
January 29th, 2015

USAMU Reloading Tip — Prepping GI 5.56 Brass for Match Use

Each Wednesday, the U.S. Army Marksmanship Unit publishes a reloading “how-to” article on the USAMU Facebook page. Yesterday’s “Handloading Hump Day” post covered preparation of once-fired 5.56x45mm brass. This article, the first in a 3-part series, has many useful tips. If you shoot a rifle chambered in .223 Rem or 5.56x45mm, this article is worth reading. And visit the USAMU Facebook page next Wednesday for the next installment.

This week, Handloading Hump-Day will answer a special request from several competitive shooters in Alaska. They asked about procedures for morphing once-fired GI 5.56mm brass into accurate match brass for NRA High Power Rifle use. The USAMU has used virgin Lake City (LC) 5.56 brass to win National Championships and set National Records for many years. In this 3-part series, we’ll share techniques proven to wring match-winning accuracy from combat-grade brass.

Preparing Once-Fired GI 5.56 Brass for Reloading (Part 1 of 3)
Assuming our readers will be getting brass once-fired as received from surplus dealers, the following steps can help process the low-cost raw material into reliably accurate components.

1. Clean the Brass
First, clean the brass of any dirt/mud/debris, if applicable. Depending on the brass’s condition, washing it in a soap solution followed by a thorough rinsing may help. [This step also extends the life of the tumbling media.] Approaches range from low-tech, using gallon jugs 1/2 full of water/dish soap plus brass and shaking vigorously, to more high-tech, expensive and time-consuming methods.

2. Wet-Tumbling Options (Be Sure to Dry the Brass)
When applying the final cleaning/polish, some use tumblers with liquid cleaning media and stainless steel pins for a brilliant shine inside and out, while others take the traditional vibratory tumbler/ground media approach. Degree of case shine is purely personal preference, but the key issue is simple cleanliness to avoid scratching ones’ dies.

If a liquid cleaner is used, be SURE to dry the cases thoroughly to preclude corrosion inside. One method is to dump the wet brass into an old pillow case, then tilt it left/right so the cases re-orient themselves while shifting from corner to corner. Several repetitions, pausing at each corner until water stops draining, will remove most water. They can then be left to air-dry on a towel, or can be dried in a warm (150° F-200° F max) oven for a few minutes to speed evaporation.

Shown below are Lake City cases after cleaning with Stainless Media (STM). Note: STM Case cleaning was done by a third party, not the USAMU, which does not endorse any particular cleaning method.

3. Inspect Every Case
Once dry, inspect each case for significant deformation (i.e., someone stepped on it), damaged mouths/necks and case head/rim damage. Some rifles’ ejectors actually dig small chunks of brass out of the case head — obviously, not ideal for precision shooting. Similarly, some extractors can bend the case rims so badly that distortion is visible when spinning them in one’s fingers. These can be used for plinking, but our match brass should have straight, undamaged rims.

Dented case mouths are common, and these can easily be rounded using a conical, tapered tool, [such as a .223 expander mandrel. A dummy 7.62 or .30-06 cartridge with a FMJ spitzer can also work.] If most of your brass is of one headstamp, this is a good time to cull out any odd cases.

4. Check the Primers Before Decapping
Your clean, dry and inspected brass is now ready for full-length sizing, decapping and re-priming. Historically, primer crimps on GI brass have caused some head-scratching (and vile language) among handloaders. Our next installment will detail efficient, easy and practical methods to remove primer crimp, plus other useful handloading tips. Until next week, Good Shooting!

NOTE: The USAMU Handloading (HL) Shop does not RE-load fired 5.56 brass. We use virgin LC brass with our chosen primer already staked in place. However, our staff has extensive personal experience reloading GI brass for competition, which will supplement the Shop’s customary steps. In handloading, as in life, there are many ways to accomplish any given task. Our suggestions are note presented as the “only way,” by any means. Time for loading/practicing is always at a premium. Readers who have more efficient, alternative methods that maintain top accuracy are invited to share them here.

Permalink Reloading 3 Comments »
January 28th, 2015

SIG Sauer Showcases All-New “Electro-Optical” Product Line

At SHOT Show 2015, SIG Sauer showcased a host of new optics products. SIG’s new Electro-Optics division will market a complete line of riflescopes, battle sights, red dot/reflex sights, rangefinders, binoculars, and spotting scopes. For ALL the new Electro-Optics products, SIG will be offering a lifetime transferable warranty. That’s impressive. SIG’s new electro-optical offerings, which are named after radio alphabet words (such as “Bravo” and “Tango”), are revealed in this video:

The “Whiskey” riflescope series is marketed as a rugged, affordable optical solution for hunters. Designed for law enforcement and tactical shooters, the “Tango” series of riflescopes feature 6X zoom ratios and meet MILSPEC requirements. Shown below is the 3-18x44mm Tango.

Sig Sauer Electro-Optical

The “Bravo” series of prismatic battle sights (illustration below) are pretty remarkable. An innovative new lens design provides an exceptionally wide field of view. SIG claims that Bravo battle sights offer a 50 percent greater field-of-view than similar battle sights.

Sig Sauer Electro-Optical

The “Romeo” series of red dot sights are designed for tactical carbines. The miniature “Romeo1″ Reflex Sight is designed to be slide-mounted on a pistol, and SIG will offer several pistols with the Romeo1 pre-installed. For big game hunting or extreme long-range shooting, SIG developed the “Kilo” rangefinder series, the “Victor” spotting scope line and the “Zulu” binocular series. The “Kilo” rangefinder (bottom photo) can reach out to 1600 yards and features an auto-dimming display. It is about the same size as a Leica CRF, but it is easier to hold. There are molded, rubberized finger grooves on the top and the whole unit has a nice feel in the hand.

Sig Sauer Electro-Optical

To learn more about other SIG Sauer products for 2015, visit the Shooter’s Log, presented by Cheaper than Dirt. For 2015, along with new handguns and rifles, SIG Sauer has rolled out a branded line of suppressors. SIG’s new cans should be popular with both tactical shooters and hunters (where suppressor use is allowed).

Permalink New Product, Optics No Comments »
January 28th, 2015

SHOT Show: Ashbury Precision, Vortex Optics, Thunder Beast

Our friends Ed and Steve, aka the 6.5 Guys, were prolific last week in Las Vegas, visiting dozens of vendors at SHOT Show. Here are Ed and Steve’s video reports for Ashbury Precision Ordnance (APO), Vortex Optics, and Thunderbeast Arms. (If you’re thinking about buying a suppressor definitely check out the new Ultra series from Thunderbeast, featured in the third video below). You can see more SHOT Show videos by Ed and Steve at 6.5Guys.com.


Ashbury Precision Ordnance

Here Precision Rifle Series (PRS) Competitor Melissa Gilliland talks about the modular chassis systems offered by Ashbury Precision Ordnance (APO). With adjustable buttplate, cheekpiece, and grip, these systems can be adapted for a variety of shooting disciplines. APO even offers a modular chassis for Savage barreled actions. Melissa shoots a tricked-out 6.5 Creedmoor rig with a Titanium APO action.

New Precision Rifle from APO
Ashbury Precision Ordnance

SABRE Chassis System for Savage Actions
Ashbury Precision Ordnance


Vortex Optics

Vortex continues to grab a larger share of the tactical and long-range hunting markets. This video features the Vortex Razor HD Gen II 4.5-27x56mm and 3-18x50mm scopes. These Gen II Razors feature apochromatic objective lenses, rugged 34mm single-piece aluminum main tubes, and versatile 6X zoom range. Both MOA-based and Milrad-based reticles are offered. Vortex scopes have large, user-friendly controls, and a good feature set for the price.

Vortex Optics 6.5Guys.com

Thunder Beast Arms

Thunder Beast Arms’s suppressors, built by shooters for shooters, are tough yet light. Thunder Beast developed a strong following for its titanium cans that offered excellent performance with light weight. In this video, Thunder Beast unveils its new “Ultra” series of suppressors. Compared to Thunder Beast’s previous CB-series suppressors (of like size), these Ultras are 4 to 5 ounces lighter, yet provide 4 to 5 decibels of additional noise reduction. That represents a major gain in suppressor performance.

Thunderbeast arms suppressor ultra can

Permalink - Videos, Optics, Tactical No Comments »
January 28th, 2015

Varmint Benchrest Silhouette on Shooting USA TV Tonight

Shooting reactive targets is fun, especially when you get to use ultra-accurate benchrest rifles. To see how the “Varmint Silhouette” game is played, tune in to Shooting USA tonight on the Outdoor Channel. Tonight’s episode features a long-range varmint benchrest silhouette match at the Ridgway Rifle Club in Pennsylvania. This is silhouette like you’ve never seen it, with targets placed from 850 to 1,000 yards, and shooters using precision rifles, high-end optics, and advanced rests. This new sport combines the knock-down fun of silhouette with the high-tech precision of benchrest shooting. At Ridgway’s first Bench Rest Silhouette match 28 shooters participated. Five years later, nearly 120 shooters attend regular monthly matches. CLICK HERE for Match Info.


Varmint Benchrest Silhouette Basics
In 2010, the Ridgway Rifle Club combined Metallic Silhouette and 1000-yard Bench Rest into one exciting new discipline. Steel targets are arrayed in banks of five at four distances. The targets are set up as follows: Crows at 850 yards, Ground Hogs at 900 yards, Bobcats at 950 yards, and Coyotes at 1000 yards. Just dinging a target is not enough — to count as a “hit”, the target must fall down.

Ridgway PA varmint benchrest silhouette long range

Ridgeway allows two classes of guns, Heavy Class with a maximum weight of 17 pounds, and Standard Class with a maximum weight of 12 pounts. Both classes must otherwise conform to the Light Gun rules for the Original 1000-Yard Bench Rest Club in Williamsport, PA.

Varmint Silhouette West of the Mississipi
Clubs in other states also host Varmint Silhouette matches (or some variant thereof). One of the longest-running and most popular Varmint Silhouette matches is held the first weekend of every month at the Pala Range, in San Diego County, California. At Pala, competitors shoot at “critter” targets placed at five yardages: 200 Meters – Field Mice (“pikas”); 300 meters – Crows; 385 meters – Ground Squirrels; 500 meters – Jack Rabbits; 600 yards – Prairie Dogs

Pala Varmint Silhouette

pala range san diego varmint

Fun Weekend for the Whole Family
Pala California Shooting RangeAt Pala, there’s a deluxe Indian Casino/Spa nearby. So don’t hesitate to bring the wife. If she’s not a shooter, she can enjoy a fancy brunch or spa treatment while you’re having fun mowing down metal critters. Pala is a 30 minutes from the Pacific Ocean and beautiful beaches, so you can make this a weekend holiday for the whole family — kids love sand and surf.

Permalink - Videos, Competition 9 Comments »
January 27th, 2015

Making the Mile Shot — The Stottlemyer Family Quest

Many of us dream about taking (and making) a one-mile shot someday. To accomplish this feat, you need a very accurate rifle, ultra-consistent ammo, good logistics, and, of course, the proper location. In their quest to make the mile shot, Kerry Stottlemyer and his uncle Ron headed to the California desert. There they would attempt to “reach out and touch” a target 1760 yards distant. Here is their story….

Shooting at a Mile with a .300 Win Mag (from Sierra Bullets Blog)
My uncle, Ron Stottlemyer, was serious about this trip and this mile shot. He was sparing no expense and assured me that everything would be ready in December to make this shot, the only thing left to risk was the weather. The area we were planning on has some unpredictable winds, but in December it’s pretty calm so we hoped for the best.

After a year of planing, my uncle arrived at the airport with his Remington Sendero in tow, a .300 Win Mag with a Leupold Mk4 LR scope on it. We went to my place to tear down the rifle, thread the barrel and install the muzzle brake I made for him. We worked hard to bed the scope base and remount and bore sight the scope before the weekend.

Remington Sendero
The rifle: a Remington Sendero in .300 Win Mag with a Leupold Mk4 8.5-24X LR TRM scope, on Talley rings and a badger base. I threaded the barrel and installed the brake that we designed and I made, bedded the action, and bedded the scope base. Bore sighted it, reassembled it and tested everything for function and safety. The powder, primers, brass and bullets (220 gr HPBT Sierra MatchKings #2240) were all purchased online.

With everything packed, we headed out to the California desert to some Bureau of Land Management (BLM) land that would give us enough room to safely stretch the Sendero’s legs (see the photo below). Friday was spent reloading a few rounds at a time to get his scope zeroed, then on to working up loads for the next day’s attempt at 1760 yards (1 mile) (See Photo below).

mile shot sierra bullets
Photo shows the camp from the target, GPS-located 1.00 miles away. That’s 1760 yards.

Saturday morning arrived and it was time to make breakfast and coffee. Mountain man breakfast in a dutch oven cooked over a camp fire. Bacon, sausage, potatoes, green peepers, onions, eggs, and cheese. Better then any breakfast made at home.

I set up my spotting scope get it dialed in and could immediately see that the wind was going to be an issue. My uncle got the rifle up on the bench, got the bags positioned, dialed the magnification all the way up to 25X on the scope and asked me for the come-ups. I told him to come up 150 clicks and give me two mils right windage.

Walking in the Shots at One Mile
He got set while I watched the wind see it settle into a rhythm and say “send it.” He let one fly and it landed about ten feet left and about 100 yards short. I scratched my head, the wind was doing something funny. I said, “Give me two more mil elevation and another mil right windage.” He let another one fly and this time the bullet struck within feet of the target. Ok, we were getting there – a little more windage and 1/4 mil more elevation. He let another one fly but said he pulled that one.

We battled the wind for the next seventeen shots, getting within a few feet of the target each time. Turned out where the bullet was at its highest point of its path is where the worst of the wind was. He let go of the 19th shot and put that one right at the base of the target! Then he said, “I got this one.” (Meaning he needed no more corrections from me.)

The 20th shot (at a range that the .300 Win Mag has one hell of a time hitting) nailed the target just low and left of center! He did it! He nailed it at one mile with loads I built that day!

To say he jumped for joy is an understatement. He pushed that round further then anyone would have any good excuse to do so. Most would not attempt a shot like that without stepping up to the .338 Lapua, but no, he had it in his head he was going to do it, and he did.

Kerry Stottlemyer Reloading
Kerry Stottlemyer loading up the 220 gr boat tail Sierra MatchKings.

Sierra Bullets Blog Mile Shot Stottlemyer

Permalink - Articles, Shooting Skills 11 Comments »
January 27th, 2015

FREE SHOT Show Daily eZines Here

Digital editions of all four issues of SHOT Daily, the magazine printed each day of the SHOT Show, are available free in both Web eZine and downloadable PDF formats. You’ll find many product features plus articles that can benefit shooting club directors and range managers. SHOT Daily is produced for NSSF by Bonnier Corp., publishers of Outdoor Life, Field & Stream, and many other magazines.

Highlights Day 1: New Handguns Lead Story, Footwear, Legal Defense of Traditional Ammo, Women of Outdoor Channel, Midnight 3-Gun.
Highlights Day 2: New Optics Lead Story, New Ammunition, Outerwear, Christensen Arms, Volquartsen Custom, CZ Factory, SilencerCo.

Highlights Day 3: New Knives Lead Story, Shooting Accessories, Hunting Rights, Women Shooters, Proof Research, Ultra Light Arms.
Highlights Day 4 eZine: Walt Berger Profile, Steyr Scout, Lena Miculek, Sara Palin Q&A, New Remingtons.

Shot Shot Daily digital ezine PDF 2015

SHOT Daily Digital Editions

SHOT Daily Day 1 SHOT Daily Day 2
Day 1

Digital Edition | PDF

Day 2

Digital Edition | PDF

SHOT Daily Day 3 SHOT Daily Day 4
Day 3

Digital Edition | PDF


Day 4

Digital Edition | PDF



Permalink - Articles, New Product 2 Comments »
January 27th, 2015

F-Open Rifle Team Raffle — Win Custom Rifle and Guided Hunt

Are you feeling lucky? Willing to take a chance to help a good cause? Then consider participating in the U.S. F-Class Open Rifle Team Raffle. The grand prize package, valued at $9,500.00, is darn impressive. The winner gets a Custom rifle with Kelby action, Manners stock, and Krieger barrel. Add to that a Nightforce scope and a set of Vortex Binoculars. But that’s just the hardware — in addition to the complete rifle (with high-quality optics), the raffle winner will recieve a fully-guided Whitetail deer hunt (all expenses paid except transport to Oklahoma). That is pretty enticing — heck we’d buy a raffle ticket just for a chance at that rifle. Raffle tickets cost $5 each, or you can get five for $20. The winning ticket will be drawn on March 1, 2015.

To purchase tickets, contact rickjensen[at]tds.net, (918) 520-1388.

Raffle krieger kelbly nightforce vortex F-Class Open team

Permalink News 2 Comments »
January 26th, 2015

SHOT Show: Bushnell, McRee’s Precision, Timney, TargetVision

Our friends Ed and Steve, aka the 6.5 Guys, were in Las Vegas last week, checking out new products at SHOT Show. On Day 2, Ed and Steve tracked down some cool products from Bushnell, McRee’s Precision, Timney, and TargetVision. Here are Ed and Steve’s Show product preview video reports. You can see more SHOT Show videos by Ed and Steve at 6.5Guys.com.


Bushnell

Laser RangeFinder with BlueTooth: Here Bushnell showcases the brand new Elite CONX Rangefinder. Using a Bluetooth connection, this “networkable” rangefinder can communicate with a smart-phone (and certain Kestrels). This allows you to push range/angle data directly into a ballistics App on your phone. We will certainly see more of this kind of inter-device connectivity in the future. The CONX can work with both iOS (Apple) and Android OS devises.

Bushnell Shot Show 6.5 Guys Optics Rangefinder


McRee’s Precision

Chassis Systems and Prefit Kits: The 6.5 guys interviewed Top Shot Season 2 Champion Chris Reed at the McRee’s Precision booth. McRee’s offers chassis systems as well as turn-key pre-fit barrel kits using Criterion barrels. Chris Reed reviews the “Remage” pre-fit barrel system for Remington actions at 5:25 in the video.

6.5 Guys McRee's Precision Remington Savage Prefit Barrel


Timney Triggers

New Double-Sear Trigger: The 6.5 Guys checked out Timney’s new “Calvin Elite” double-sear trigger. This versatile trigger adjust from 8 ounces up to 2.5 pounds. It allows you to shoot a rifle with a low trigger pull weight for competition, then raise the pull weight to 2.5 pounds for field use or hunting.

Bushnell Shot Show 6.5 Guys Optics Rangefinder


TargetVision

Wireless Target Camera: If you want to see bullet holes reliably, in all conditions, past 400 yards, you need some kind of digital camera system, preferably wireless. TargetVision sells a reliable system that works through common WiFi technology, so you can view your shooting session on a smart-phone, iPad, or Android tablet. The TargetVision system includes proprietary software that can highlight the last shot fired. You can even take snapshots or record videos of your shooting sessions.

Bushnell Shot Show 6.5 Guys Optics Rangefinder

Permalink - Videos, New Product 2 Comments »
January 26th, 2015

The 28 Nosler Unveiled — a New High-Velocity 7mm Cartridge

28 Nosler Hunting magnumNosler has just introduced a new cartridge, the 28 Nosler. This new 7mm hunting round delivers magnum-class velocities in a cartridge that fits a standard action. The 28 Nosler is capable of launching a 160gr Accubond at 3300 fps. The 28 Nosler uses the same parent case as the 26 Nosler, introduced in 2014. Designed for a maximum COAL of 3.340″, the 28 Nosler will operate in a standard action that is lighter (and more compact) than a magnum action.

The 28 Nosler offers serious knock-down power for the long-range hunter. The factory 185gr Accubond load retains over 2000 ft/lbs. of energy at 600 yards, and remains supersonic well past 1000 yards. Nosler factory ammo will be offered with 160gr and 185gr bullet-weight options.

Previewing the 28 Nosler:

For hand-loaders, Nosler will also offer 28 Nosler cartridge brass. It will be interesting to see whether some F-Class competition shooters experiment with the 28 Nosler (and heavy match bullets) as an alternative to the .284 Winchester or short magnums (WSM or RSAUM).

28 Nosler Hunting magnum

28 Nosler Ballistics

28 Nosler Hunting magnum

28 Nosler Hunting magnum

Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Hunting/Varminting No Comments »
January 26th, 2015

Magpul’s Hunter 700 Stock — Impressive Offering at $259.95

Magpul 700 stock Hunter polymer chassis system

Our readers wanted more information on the $259.95 Magpul Hunter 700 stock, so here it is. We got our hands on the new product. The polymer shell is strong and stiff — not like the “Tupperware” plastic stocks you’ll find on some factory offerings. The stock comes standard with a flush bottom plate. However, for $70 more you can get a polymer magwell unit that allows use of new MagPul 5-round and 10-round magazines. The stock features an anodized aluminum V-block that allows easy installation of a Rem 700-footprint action.

CLICK Photo to See Full-Screen Image:
Magpul 700 stock Hunter polymer chassis system

But perhaps the most important element of this stock can’t be shown in photos. INSIDE the stock is a metal “skeleton” that extends from the middle of the fore-end back into the grip. This skeleton, an important design innovation, gives the stock great strength and rigidity. It is sort of like a race car with a tube chassis under the body work. We suspect Magpul is working on a patent.

Magpul 700 stock Hunter polymer chassis system

Permalink New Product, Tactical 1 Comment »
January 25th, 2015

New Flameless Induction (Electrical) Annealer from Giraud

Giraud Tool Fluxeon Induction Electrical annealer annealing machine cartridge brass Lapua flame torch
Click Photo for full screen view of machine.

Forget flames — induction may be the future of cartridge annealing. Induction heating, using an electrical current passing through a coil, can be controlled with great precision (you can dial in the “dwell time” to a small fraction of a second). With a high-wattage power source, induction annealing is also very fast. A cartridge case can be done in two seconds or less. Combine that with an automatic case feeding system and you have a true assembly-line process capable of cranking out hundreds of precision-annealed cases per hour. Sound too good to be true? Well Giraud Tool recently announced its new Electro-Induction cartridge annealing system. This combines Giraud’s proven hopper-type case feeding system with a powerful Fluxeon Annealer. Watch the video below to see how it works.

Watch Giraud Induction Annealer Batch-Process Cases (900+ cases/hour)

Including case-shuttle time, a case is annealed and processed approximately every 4 seconds (rate based on the video demonstration). At that rate, if you keep the hopper full, you could anneal over 900 cases per hour. Even if you don’t need that production capacity, this system allows unattended annealing of your cartridge brass while you do other tasks — such as weighing powder charges or seating bullets.

We know some of you guys are now thinking “OK — I want one. What’s it going to cost?” Giraud has not listed a price yet for a complete induction annealing system. Giraud’s torch-equipped, hopper-fed annealing rig starts at $470.00. We expect that integrating the “Annie” induction unit by Fluxeon will add $500 to the price. By itself, the “Annie” induction annealer costs $449.00 on Fluxeon’s online store. But that $449.00 Fluxeon price does not include long-reach cables and adapters for the hopper feed.

Giraud Tool Fluxeon Induction Electrical annealer annealing machine cartridge brass Lapua flame torch

Story Tip by EdLongrange. We welcome reader submissions.
Permalink Gear Review, New Product 10 Comments »
January 25th, 2015

Cortina’s Corner: Installing Jewell Trigger in Panda F-Class Action

Eric Cortina Lapua Jewell Trigger Panda Stolle Action Kelbly Kelbly's

In the video below, Forum member Eric Cortina shows how to install a Jewell Benchrest trigger into a Kelbly F-Class Panda action. You could follow the same simple procedure to install a Jewell in a standard Panda action. Kelbly’s sell both standard and long versions of the F-Class Panda action. Both versions feature integral recoil lugs in the front.

To see more detail in this “how-to” video, you can zoom it to full-screen size. Simply click the full-screen icon (4-cornered frame) just to the right of the YouTube logo in the lower right.

Eric Cortina Lapua Jewell Trigger Panda Stolle Action Kelbly Kelbly's

Eric Cortina Lapua Jewell Trigger Panda Stolle Action Kelbly Kelbly's

Permalink Gunsmithing, Tech Tip 1 Comment »
January 24th, 2015

SHOT Show: Nightforce, Manners, David Tubb, G.A. Precision

Our friends Ed and Steve, AKA the 6.5 Guys were in Las Vegas this week, checking out new products at SHOT Show. Ed and Steve visited some of our favorite gear-makers, including Nightforce Optics, Manners Composite Stocks, David Tubb, and G.A. Precision. Here are Ed and Steve’s Show reports for these important vendors. You can see more SHOT Show videos by Ed and Steve at 6.5Guys.com.


Nightforce Optics

Highlights include Nightforce’s new F1 First Focal Plane scopes. Our readers will probably be most interested in the new ATACR™ 5-25x56mm F1™ riflescope. With a beefy 34mm maintube, the new 5-25x56mm F1 boasts an impressive 30 MOA (or 12 Mil-Rads) of elevation per revolution, with 120 MOA (or 35 mils) of total elevation adjustment.


Manners Composite Stocks

There are about a half-dozen new stocks from Manners for 2015, both for precision long-range shooters as well as hunters. In the video Tom Manners shows a new tactical folder and the T7 Hybrid, an older design that Tom brought back by popular demand.

SHOT Show Tom Manners Composite Stock 6.5 Guys


David Tubb

11-Time National High Power Champion David Tubb displayed his new T7T 2-stage trigger for Remington 700 actions. This is an impressive new component that is a major upgrade over the factory trigger. First stage and second stage are separately adjustable. Price is $350.00 for right- or left-hand versions at DavidTubb.com.

SHOT Show 6.5 Guys David Tubb 2-Stage Trigger


G.A. Precision

George Gardner, founder of G.A. Precision shows off the impressive new Tempest Action, and talks about trends in the world of tactical competition. Shown below is a black-finish Tempest in a rifle at G.A.P.’s booth.

SHOT Show 6.5 Guys David Tubb 2-Stage Trigger

Permalink - Videos, New Product 1 Comment »
January 24th, 2015

Bleiker — Don’t Ask the Price…

You don’t want to inquire about the price of a Bleiker competition rifle. As the expression goes, “If you have to ask, you can’t afford it”. At the Pardini USA booth at SHOT Show we saw a pair of black beauties — two “full-race” Bleikers, one a smallbore match rifle (.22 LR) and the other a 300m position rifle chambered in 6mmBR Norma. The combined price for the two rifles was a jaw-dropping $20,100.00. Yep, over $20K for the two. The 6mmBR rig was $10,200 while the smallbore rifle was $9,900.00.

Bleikers command such high prices because they win. At recent ISSF 300m and Smallbore Championships, Bleikers have been used by many of the medal winners. A gun is worth $10K if it can really put you on the podium or, better yet, deliver a world championship.

You are looking at $20,100 of Competition Rifles here. (Click Image for full-screen version.)
Bleiker 300m rifle smallbore championship

Take a look at this slick feature on the 300m gun. The adjustable cheek-pad automatically tilts up (for clearance) when you retract the bolt. That’s clever Swiss Engineering.

Bleiker 300m rifle smallbore championship

Bleiker 300m rifle smallbore championship

Permalink Competition, Gunsmithing 4 Comments »
January 24th, 2015

Baby Battle Rifles — Rimfire Versions of M1 Garand and M1A

Our friend Dennis Santiago found two interesting rifles at SHOT Show. At first glance, these look just like the legendary M1 Garand and the M1A (civilian version of the M14). The size is right and the stocks look authentic. But take a closer look and you see these are NOT chambered for .30-06 (Garand) or 7.62×51 (M1A) cartridges. Rather, these Baby Battle Rifles are rimfire clones, chambered for the .22 LR. We like the concept — this gives Garand Match and M1A Match competitors the ability to cross-train with low-cost rimfire ammo. Plus, who wouldn’t want a rimfire Garand for a little low-recoil plinking fun? We bet these will produce smiles when folks at the range see them for the first time. And a .22 LR Garand is definitely going to be softer on the ears (and your shoulder)!

Battle Rifle Kingston Armory .22 LR M1 Garand .30-06 .308 Win M1A M14

Dennis tells us: “These were kind of neat. The form factors and ergonomics are accurate. The weight is a pound or two lighter than the real deal. Trigger is Ruger’ish. It might be fun to show up with one of these at a CMP .22 Sporter match.”

Battle Rifle Kingston Armory .22 LR M1 Garand .30-06 .308 Win M1A M14

The two Baby Battle Rifles are sold by Kingston Armory. You can visit KingstonArmory.com, but there’s really nothing to see yet — Kingston’s website is still “under construction. If you have questions you can call Kingston at 845-292-3222.

Permalink Competition, New Product 2 Comments »