April 9th, 2015

Trijicon Introduces Four New “AccuPower” Scopes

Trijicon rifle scopes accupower illuminated reticle
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Trijicon has introduced a new line of Second Focal Plane scopes with illuminated reticles. Trijicon’s new AccuPower™ riflescope series includes four models. The smallest AccuPower, well-suited for short-range hunting and 3-Gun Games, is the 1-4×24mm. Next up is a general purpose 3-9×40mm. For hunting and sporting use there are a 2.5-10×56mm and a 4-16×50mm with bigger objectives for better low-light performance. All these four models offer either 1/4-MOA or 0.1 Mil clicks. AccuPower scopes feature aluminum scope tubes, multi-coated lenses, and application-specific illuminated reticles. The 3-9x40mm has a 1″-diameter tube while the other models have 30mm tubes.

The AccuPower series incorporates a hybrid black chrome/etch and fill illuminated reticle system available in red or green, with eleven (11) brightness settings. Notably, there is an “off” feature between each brightness setting.

Four reticle choices are offered: MOA reticle, MIL-square reticle, Duplex crosshair, and the popular competition Segmented Circle crosshair with BDC capabilities.

Permalink New Product, Optics 2 Comments »
April 9th, 2015

New Remington RM380 Metal-Framed Carry Gun

Remington RM380 .380 ACP test Gunsite

Remington has introduced the brand new RM380, an ultra-small DAO .380 ACP carry pistol. This alloy-framed gun weighs just 12.2 ounces (unloaded), and is very compact, measuring 5.25 inches long. Capacity with flush-base magazine is 6+1, and Remington plans to offer a 7-round magazine with a pinky extension. Because it is hammer-fired, the RM380 has second-strike capability. There is no manual safety.

The RM380 is different that many small .380 ACP pistols in using a locking breech rather than a straight blow-back action. Remington claims this reduces perceived recoil. At a media preview hosted at the Arizona Gunsite Academy, pre-production models were tested. Those examples proved reliable, running extended strings (100+ rounds) without failure. However, testers commented on the long, very heavy, 7.9-pound trigger pull.

Remington RM380 .380 ACP test Gunsite

Remington RM 380 Specifications

Caliber: .380 ACP
Capacity: 6+1 rounds
Weight Unloaded: 12.2 Ounces
Sights: Fixed, F/R

Length: 5.25 inches
Width: 0.94 inches
Height: 3.86 inches
Trigger Pull Weight: 7.9 lbs.

Remington RM380 .380 ACP test Gunsite

Permalink Handguns, New Product 1 Comment »
April 9th, 2015

Die Selection and Reloading for Reliability in AR10s

By Dennis Santiago
Dennis Santiago AR10 diesCompetition teaches you things. Compared to loading for benchrest bolt guns, producing ultra-reliable and accurate ammo for tight-chambered, semi-auto .308 target rifles requires a different approach to case prep. Smoothness of operation is much more important in a field course gun. Reliability trumps everything (even case life) for these types of guns.

In the photo below, there’s a Redding small base body die for bumping the shoulder and making sure the case body is at SAAMI minimum. This body die is not just nice to have. It is vital. There are also a full-length sizing die and a Lee Collet neck-sizer in that turret holder. One or the other gets used after the body size die depending on what rifle the ammo will be used in. The semi-auto rounds always go through the full-length sizing die. After that comes trimming and finally cleaning — then loading can begin. The cases are trimmed using a Gracey trimmer so everything’s the same each and every time. I use an RCBS Competition Seater Die to seat the bullets. One nice feature of this RCBS die is the open side slot that allows you to place bullets easily.

Dennis Santiago AR10 dies

It’s a long path methodology but uniformity is accuracy. More important for safety, controlling “stack-up” errors in the system solution is how one achieves reliability. The chamber-hugging philosophies of benchrest bolt guns do not apply well to AR-10s. Like most things, the right answer is context-dependent. Success is about accepting and adapting.

Dennis Santiago AR10 dies

Dennis Talks About Using a Semi-Auto in Tactical Competitions
I have succumbed to the Dark Side — deciding to put an AR-10 together. For tactical competitions you want a bolt gun most of the time but there are times the course of fire favors the use of a semi-auto. I was using an M1A that gives me 0.75 MOA performance but I heard people were getting almost bolt-gun-level, half-MOA accuracy out of their AR-10s — so I wanted to see if that was really achievable. A quarter-MOA difference in accuracy potential may seem tiny in practical terms but it will make a difference in competition. In a match, the difference between 3/4-MOA and 1/2-MOA can alter your hit probability on a small target by 20-30%.

The AR platform also lets you tinker with triggers, stock ergonomics and muzzle brakes that help in managing the dynamics of a long distance shot better. Well I found out you can get the incremental accuracy but there’s more work to do to get the same reliability. Being a curious sort, it’s worth it to me to explore it. It’s a far cry from as-issued M-1 shooting with whatever HXP is handy. This is definitely swimming in the deep end of the pool.

Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Reloading 7 Comments »