May 22nd, 2017

Kevin Nevius — Smallbore Champion and Master Rifle-Builder

On the Shooting Sports USA website, there’s a great profile of Kevin Nevius, one of America’s leading competitive marksmen. Kevin is best known for his smallbore success but he has also an impressive record in long-range centerfire competition — In 2005 and 2006 he won the Sierra Trophy at Camp Perry in 1000-yard competition. This was followed by smallbore National Championships in 2008, 2010, and 2014. This story, penned by gunwriter Hap Rocketto, covers Kevin’s career, which has included multiple championships and many records.

“My brother got me into long range varmint hunting and I started building my own guns very early,” Nevius told Dan Holmes in a Pronematch.com interview. “I had a hunting friend who shot indoor smallbore who started me in three position and I was hooked.”

» READ Kevin Nevius Profile in Shooting Sports USA

Here are highlights from Hap Rocketto’s Profile of Kevin Nevius:

Shooting Sports USAChampion shooter Kevin Nevius grew up in a household that did not allow firearms, an unlikely beginning for one of the United States’ premier prone rifleman and gunsmiths. Once out on his own he fell in with his brother who enjoyed long-range varmint hunting. His natural bent for things mechanical (he is a professional structural engineer) soon had him tinkering with rifles, which eventually led him to building his own.

Everything fell into line for him in smallbore during the 2008 season. After shooting a series of training matches in which he was most successful, he arrived at Camp Perry at the peak of performance and won his first National Smallbore Rifle Conventional Prone Championship. Kevin came back strong in 2010, winning the inaugural individual National Smallbore Rifle Metric Prone Championship, as well as the team title at Bristol, IN. [Kevin then won the Smallbore Conventional Prone Championship in 2014 with a practically perfect score of 4799-390X (LINK).]

Along the way, Nevius has won some impressive national records. In conventional competition he co-holds the 1200-shot metallic sight aggregate record of 1200-102X. He was just one shot short of perfection in the 480 aggregate, where he holds the civilian record of 4799-412X, just one point behind, and 11 Xs ahead of, Joe Hein’s 4800-401X open record.

Kevin Nevius hopes to build a smallbore rig capable of 3/8-MOA at 100 yards.
Kevin Nevius smallbore gunsmith

Building the Ultimate Rimfire Prone Rifle
Kevin is not just a great trigger-puller. He also smiths his own rifles. His current goal as a gunsmith is to build a rimfire rifle that will shoot 3/8″ groups at 100 yards. That’s a big challenge — 3/8-MOA represents very good accuracy for a centerfire rifle with handloaded ammo. But if any rimfire smith can build a rifle that will shoot that well at 100, it’s probably Kevin.

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May 22nd, 2017

Bargain Finder 87: AccurateShooter’s Deals of the Week

Accurateshooter Bargain Finder Deals of Week

At the request of our readers, we provide select “Deals of the Week”. Every Monday morning we offer our Best Bargain selections. Here are some of the best deals on firearms, hardware, reloading components, and shooting accessories. Be aware that sale prices are subject to change, and once clearance inventory is sold, it’s gone for good. You snooze you lose.

1. Brownells — Rock Chucker Supreme Reloading Kit, $199.99

Deals of Week RCBS Rock Chucker Supreme Kit

Everything you see above can be yours for just $199.99, after manufacturer’s rebate. Right now, Brownells is selling the Rock Chucker Supreme Master Reloading Kit for $269.99. That’s a great deal considering all the hardware you get. Heck, the Rock Chucker press alone is worth $150.00+. Next, you can save $20.00 and get Free Shipping with Brownells CODE M3T. (We confirmed that code works on 5/20/17). So the Brownells delivered price is $249.99 (using Code M3T). But here’s the real incentive — this Rock Chucker Supreme Kit qualifies for a Buck$ or Bullets Rebate — choose either $50 or 500 Speer bullets. If you take the fifty bucks ($50), that reduces your net cost to just $199.99 for the entire RCBS Reloading Kit. That’s a total steal.

Deals of Week RCBS Rock Chucker Supreme Kit

2. EuroOptic — Vortex Viper 6-24x50mm PST FFP, $799.00

Eurooptic Vortex Viper FFP EBR First Focal tactical Scope Sale

Here’s a “killer deal” if you need a high-quality scope for PRS and tactical games. This Vortex Viper PST 6-24x50mm scope features an illuminated EBR-2C reticle with Mil-based hash marks. The tactical-style turrets have 0.1 Mil clicks with zero-stop. The 6X low-end magnification is wide enough for closer targets, while the 24X top end is plenty of magnification for long range. The 23 oz. scope, which features a rugged, 30mm one-piece main tube, carries Vortex’s full warranty. Note this is a First Focal Plane (FFP) scope. You can save hundreds with this deal — this optic sells elsewhere for up to $1049.00. NOTE: This item is showing “back-order”, but EuroOptic.com is expecting a big shipment this week — so place your orders now.

3. Amazon — Plano Double Rifle Case with Wheels, $114.92

Plano double scoped rifle case with wheels

This Plano Double Scoped Rifle Case is an Amazon Best Seller for good reason. It offers the functionality and durability of an SKB-type hard case for HALF the money. This is under $115.00, while the equivalent SKB is around $240.00, so you can buy two Planos for the price of one SKB. The 51.5″ interior will fit most scoped competition rifles up to about 29″ barrels (measure your own rifle to make sure). The handles are convenient and beefy and the wheels make this case easy to move through airports and parking lots. This is a very tough, roomy case for the money. Plus Amazon is offering FREE Shipping.

4. Amazon — Steiner AX830 8x30mm Binoculars, $126.30

Steiner AZ830 binoculars 8x30 Military Marine sale Amazon $114.49

Need a good set of rugged, affordable binoculars for hunting or varmint work? Then check out the Steiner AZ830 at $126.30. These are essentially identical to the respected Steiner Military Marine binoculars which sell for $220 or more. The only differences are the color and the packaging. The AZ830s are a black “house brand” created for Amazon by Steiner. Other than the color (black vs. OD Green) everything is the same. Same bright glass, same auto focus system, some tough rubber armor, same rock solid Steiner Heritage Warranty. We highly recommend these AZ830 binoculars. For under $130.00, you can’t beat them.

Editor’s Note: With these AZ830 Steiner binoculars, once you adjust the eyepieces, everything from 20 yards to infinity is in focus. This is a huge advantage in the field. I own the virtually identical Steiner 8×30 Military Marine model which has the same focus system.

5. Aero Precision — Upper & Lower Kit, FDE Cerakote, $193.49

AR AR16 Upper and Lower Aero Precision Kit

Thinking of putting together an accurate AR for the new PRS Gas Gun series (or 3-Gun matches)? Here’s a good place to start. Aero Precision now offers a $193.49 kit with stripped Upper and Lower Receivers — both with a durable Flat Dark Earth (Magpul FDE) Cerakote finish. Just add barrel, buttstock, trigger group, controls, and your bolt carrier group. Note: This Kit will work with the .223 Rem and similar-length, larger-caliber cartridges such as the 6mmAR and 6.5 Grendel. If you want to shoot a 6.5 Creedmoor, you’ll need an AR10 platform rifle.

6. Midsouth — Hornady LnL Auto Charge Scale/Dispenser, $159.99

Hornady Lock and load auto charge scale powder dispenser sale discount

The Hornady Lock N Load Auto Charge Electronic Scale/Dispenser is now on sale for just $159.99 at Midsouth Shooters Supply, discounted way down from the regular $226.24 price. That’s the lowest price we’ve seen on this product in a long time, making this a real bargain. If you are looking for an affordable, combo digital scale and powder dispenser, this is a great deal. By comparison, the new RCBS ChargeMaster Lite sells for around $250.00 and is back-ordered at many vendors. That means you can save at least $90.00 by buying RED instead of GREEN.

7. CDNN — Remington RP9 9x19mm Pistol, $249.99 with Rebate

Remington RP9 9mm pistol handgun service Rebate sale discount

Here’s a killer deal on a modern, full-size, 9mm pistol. The striker-fired Remington RP9 is similar to Smith & Wesson’s popular M&P9, but we prefer the Remington’s grip ergonomics, and the RP9 is much less expensive. The RP9 comes with three (3) grip inserts and two (2) 18-round magazines. CDNN’s retail price is $299.99, but this pistol qualifies for a $50 mail-in Rebate from Remington. That knocks your net cost down to $249.99. That’s a heck of a bargain for a nicely-designed, American-made pistol. We’ve shot this Remington RP9 pistol and definitely prefer its ergonomics/controls over those of the full-size 9mm Glock 17.

8. Bass Pro — Federal Value Pack .22 LR, 325 Rds for $19.99

Federal .22 LR Rimfire Ammo ammunition auto-match Target Grade bulk pack

This Federal Auto-Match .22 LR ammo is just 6.2 cents per round — the kind of pricing on bulk rimfire ammo we used to see in the “good old days”. Act quickly, this $19.99 Federal .22 LR Ammo deal at Bass Pro Shops won’t last long. Each box contains 325 rounds — enough ammo for many sessions at the range. The bullets are 40 grains, solid lead.

9. Home Depot — 72″ Wood Workbench for $75.36

Folding Wood Work Bench Home Deport Reloading

This patented Home Depot workbench assembles in a few minutes. Simply unfold the legs, pop in the shelf, and you are ready to start your project. Made from Premium 2×4 Hemlock fastened with glue and screws, this workbench is a great value. The bench (72″ wide x 35″ high x 22″ deep) can easily be stored when not in use. NOTE: The wood is unfinished (can be painted or stained).

Permalink Hot Deals, Optics, Reloading 1 Comment »
May 22nd, 2017

Accurate Cartridges — The .284 Shehane, an Improved .284 Win

F-Class Reloading .284 Winchester Win Shehane Accuracy

If you look at that 5-round group you might think it was shot with a 6 PPC or maybe a 6mmBR. But no, this was done with heavy 180gr Berger Hybrid bullets and the .284 Shehane, an improved version of the .284 Winchester. In fact, this impressive sub-quarter MOA group was shot while fire-forming with a very well-worn barrel!

Gun builder Ryan Pierce of Piercision Rifles explains:

Here’s a 5-shot 0.191″ group at 100 yards with my .284 Shehane fireforming loads. This barrel has 2200 rounds through it. It had 2000 as a straight .284 Win and then I set it back to .284 Shehane to form brass with. This was the first five rounds through it after I cleaned it after the last match. [The load was] 180 Hybrids with 54.0 grains of H4831 SC.

Ya, I figured why not I had some old barrels laying around so I just chopped 2″ off the back and 1″ off the front and chambered it up as a Shehane. Had 1000 pieces to fireform and didn’t want to do all that on a brand new barrel.

My fireform loads are going 2765 FPS. I have a 29″ barrel also though since it’s a setback. Once you get it formed I would push it faster than that or I wouldn’t even bother with the Shehane. My old straight .284 load at 2890 fps had ES spread in single digits for 10 shots. I figured if I get it up to 2935-2950 fps that will be a point or two saved in a several day match.

.284 Winchester Shehane Reamer Print PT&G

Fellow .284 Shehane shooter Erik Cortina notes that the .284 Shehane has a velocity edge over the straight .284 Win because it holds more powder: “The Shehane has more capacity than the .284 Winchester. Ryan is using 54.0 grains simply as a fire-forming load. Typical load for a Shehane is around 57.0 grains of Hodgdon H4831 SC.” By blowing the sidewalls out 0.010″, the .284 Shehane picks up about 3.3 grains of extra case capacity. That enhancement makes a BIG difference. The extra boiler room is enough to drive the 180s at 2900-2950 fps with H4831sc, with long barrels.

Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Competition, Reloading No Comments »