September 24th, 2017

Washington Squad Sets New F-Open National Team Record

Washington F-Open Team Jay Christopherson F-Class Montana Deep Creek National Record
WA Team members, left to right: Tod Hendricks, Jay Christopherson, Monte Milanuk, David Oakes.

F-Class competition continues to evolve, as guns and shooters get better every season. That means records get broken. Yet another record was smashed this month as the “Washington F-Open” team scored 1794-121X, a new pending National Record. That stunning combined team score beats the previous best by five points and more than 20 Xs. We believe the current record is 1789-100X, set at the 2017 Berger Southwest Nationals.

The new 1794-21X team record was set at the 2017 Northern Rockies LR F-Class Regional Match, held September 6-8 at the Deep Creek Range outside Missoula, Montana. This is a three-day, long range regional F-Class match consisting of two individual days and one team day.

Washington F-Open Team Jay Christopherson F-Class Montana Deep Creek National Record

Team Member Jay Christopherson, who won the F-Open Division, was proud of his Team’s accomplishment: “We were very excited when our shooting held up at 1000 yards to break the record.” Forum member Pat F., who also shot the match in Montana, said this was a really impressive performance: “I think that record will stand for a while.”

Washington F-Open Team Jay Christopherson F-Class Montana Deep Creek National Record

World’s Most Accurate IT Guy Wins F-Open with Brilliant Performance
Our AccurateShooter.com Systems Administrator, Jay Christopherson, won the F-Open Division with a superb 1047-62X individual performance. Remarkably, when you combine that 1047-62X with his 449-33X score in the team match, Jay dropped only four (4) points the entire weekend over 150 shots (105 shots in individual competition and another 45 in the team match). That is a combined percentage 99.73% in the Ten-Ring. Amazing! Jay is definitely “The World’s Most Accurate IT Guy”. Congrats Jay.

Jay was shooting a new F-0pen rifle built with his favorite hardware: a smooth-cycling Borden BRMXD action riding in a hardwood X-Ring stock. The barrel was a 32″-long, 1:9″-twist Bartlein chambered for the .284 Winchester cartridge. All team members were shooting straight .284 Wins with Berger 180gr Hybrid bullets. Jay was using a new scope, a fixed-power 48x52mm March High Master. Jay was impressed with the sharpness, clarity, and reliability of this scope. He said that during the match he never felt the need to dial-down power, so the 48X fixed magnification worked fine.

Jay reports: “Conditions were generally pretty good. Not perfect, but almost… There was enough change to push you out of the 10-Ring if you were not careful, but overall, the conditions were about as consistently good as you can expect. There was also some smoke haze, particularly on Friday and Saturday, that made seeing the target a challenge and looking at mirage was basically impossible. But, for all that, the wind was mostly very, very kind.”

“This is the fourth year I have traveled to shoot this match and as always, it was an excellent match. Jamey Williams does an outstanding job of herding cats and ensuring that the match runs smoothly. Bob Evans ran the line and really did an excellent job of keeping everyone safe and the match moving.”

Here is an aerial view of the Deep Creek Range (Drone video by David Gosnell):

Northern Rockies LR F-Class Regional Match Results
Individual Top Three Shooters (1050-105X Possible)

F-Open Division:
Jay Christopherson, 1047-62X, MW

Tod Hendricks, 1043-61X, 2nd MW
Jim Williams, 1041-51X, 3rd MW

F-TR Division:
Justin Covey, 1030-48X, MW

Tom Hubbard, 1030-41X, 2nd MW
John Van Santford, 1027-36X, 3rd MW

F-Class Team Matches (1800-180X Possible)

F-Open Winning Team:”Washington F-Open”, 1794-121X
Jay Christopherson, 449-33X
Tod Hendricks, 448-28X
David Oakes, 448-30X
Monte Milanuk, 449-30X

F-TR Winning Team: “Misfits”, 1751-50X
John Van Santford, 436-14X
Beverly Van Santford, 441-13X
Phil Brackenbury, 436-12X
Larry Bandaccari, 438-11X

Course of Fire: The individual days are a 105-shot aggregate, consisting of a 45-shot Palma (800/900/1000) followed by a 20-shot x 1000 (Day 1) and a 40-shot x 1000 match (Day 2). The team match is a 45-shot per team member Palma match (800/900/1000).

Permalink Competition, News, Optics 6 Comments »
September 24th, 2017

Top Five Full-Size 9mm Pistol Values Under $350.00

Five Budget 9mm sale bargain full-size 9x19mm pistol Canik RP9 Kahr S&W M&P Walther Creed CT9

It’s a buyer’s market these days for polymer-framed handguns. There was a time you’d have to pay close to $600 for a Glock 17. Now you can choose from a variety of excellent 9mm pistols all under $400.00, and some under $300.00. While the Glock has legendary reliability, some of these Top Five Budget-Priced Pistols have better ergonomics, better controls, and better sights. Here are our Top Five 9mm Pistols under $350.00. We selected these based on a variety of factors, including quality, reliability, shootability, and value. Speaking of value, four of these five are under $300!

Should you pay more for a pistol? That’s debatable. We’ve owned Glocks, Sigs, Steyrs, and HKs some of which cost over $800.00 new. We love our metal-framed Sigs, but among polymer-frame guns, we think any of these five will give the more expensive guns a run for their money. The Walther Creed, for example, is basically a “no-frills” version of the Walther PPQ which has a $649.00 MSRP.

Here are our Top Five, Value-Priced (Under $350) Full-Size 9mm Pistols, listed in order of price, low to high:

1. Walther Creed, $269.99 (CDNN Sports)

Five Budget 9mm sale bargain full-size 9x19mm pistol Canik RP9 Kahr S&W M&P Walther Creed CT9

The Walther Creed offers excellent ergonomics, good accuracy, and well-designed controls at a killer price — $269.99 at CDNN Sports. This gun, designed to be a value-leader, emulates Walther’s more expensive PPQ model (MSRP $649.00) at a much lower price. The Creed’s frame size and shape is the same as the PPQ, but the Creed lacks interchangeable backstraps. Slide and trigger are very similar. The Creed features a snag-free bobbed hammer. Testers have praised the new Creed, some calling it the “best value on the market”. Here is a recent video review. The tester gave the Creed high marks, saying that it “sacrifices little to nothing in… ergonomics, accuracy, and reliability.”

2. Remington RP9, $269.99 (CDNN Sports)

Five Budget 9mm sale bargain full-size 9x19mm pistol Canik RP9 Kahr S&W M&P Walther Creed CT9

Here’s a great 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, and the RP9 is considerably less expensive. The RP9 comes with three (3) grip inserts and two (2) 18-round magazines. CDNN’s sale price is $269.99. 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 9mm Glock 17.

3. Canik TP9 SA, $287.99 (Prepper Gun Shop)

Five Budget 9mm sale bargain full-size 9x19mm pistol Canik RP9 Kahr S&W M&P Walther Creed CT9
Photo courtesy LuckyGunner.com.

The Canik TP9 SA has been on the market for a couple years now and has really started to find favor, even among Glock fans. This striker-fired pistol has a decent trigger, and for many shooter the frame is more comfortable than the Glock. The Canik ships with polymer holster, interchangeable backstraps, and is backed by a lifetime warranty through Century Arms. If you are not familiar with this pistol, watch a few YouTube reviews. This gun has earned good marks from most testers, many of whom say it’s a better gun than the Glock, for hundreds less. For example in a head-to-head comparison test with the Glock 17, Reload Hawaii declared: “Fit and finish is fine, reliability is great, accuracy is great [plus] you get more stuff with it — I give the edge to the Canik”. Here’s a pretty throrough review including a torture test. The reviewer gave the Canik “two thumbs up”.

4. Kahr CT9 SS, $299.99 (CDNN)

Five Budget 9mm sale bargain full-size 9x19mm pistol Canik RP9 Kahr S&W M&P Walther Creed CT9

This pistol is an excellent carry gun. Some might call it a “mid-sized” pistol, as it is only 6.5″ overall. The gun is thin and the controls are well recessed so this Kahr is great for discrete carry — it “prints” less than most of the other guns featured here. The striker-fired Kahr has a nice trigger pull. Take-up is pretty long, but the engagement is smooth without the hitches/spikes you feel on a Glock trigger pull. Many shooters find they can shoot the Kahr more accurately that a similar-sized Glock due to the smoother trigger. Shown above is the Kahr CT9 Night Sight version with stainless steel slide. We like the contrasting slide, but this gun is also available with a black Cerakote slide. The Kahr CT9 is on sale now at CDNN Sports for just $299.99.

5. S&W M&P 9mm, $399.99/$324.99 after Rebate (DeGuns.Net)

Smith Wesson M&P pistol handgun 9mm 9x19mm sale rebate

Just to be honest, the price of this gun is $399.99 but a current S&W rebate can drop the net cost to $324.99. That’s a great deal on a very reliable, accurate full-size 9x19mm pistol — the Smith & Wesson M&P 9mm 2.0. The M&P is a quality gun with good ergonomics. It has been selected by many LEO organizations as their duty pistol. Right now this 9mm pistol is on sale for $399.99. To sweeten the deal, this handgun qualifies for a Smith & Wesson Rebate — either $75.00 or $180 worth of ammo, mags, and mag-loader. Act soon — the Smith & Wesson Rebate offer expires September 30, 2017.

Permalink Handguns, Hot Deals 1 Comment »
September 24th, 2017

Advanced RL 23 and RL 26 Powders for Magnum Cartridges

Alliant Bofors Nitrochemie Reloader Reloading RL Reloder powder 22 23 25 26

Ever heard of Alliant Reloder 23? Or Reloder 26? These two relatively new European-produced Reloder propellants were introduced in 2014. Most folks haven’t tried these Reloder powders because it took quite a while for the first shipments of RL 23 and RL 26 to arrive in the USA. But now these two new propellants are available in the USA, with substantial inventories in stock at some larger vendors. For example, Powder Valley has both RL 23 and RL 26 in stock now at $23.50 per pound. Many other vendors have ample RL 23, but RL 26 is a bit harder to find.

From our Forum members who shoot large magnum cartridge types with heavy bullets, we have heard good things about both RL 23 and RL 26. Reports from the field indicat that both these powders are delivering impressive velocities with low velocity ES/SD.

What are the characteristics of RL 23 and RL 26? That question was answered recently by Paul Furrier who works for ATK, the parent company of Alliant Powders. Posting in our Shooters’ Forum, Paul writes:

“Let me provide some factual info about these products. Some of the stuff that gets propagated is not correct. Reloder 23 is produced by our Swedish partner Bofors, and Reloder 26 is produced in Switzerland by our extremely capable partner Nitrochemie. I have seen it stated that they are both made by Bofors, so that is incorrect.

I have also noticed people are equating Reloder 23 to Reloder 22, and Reloder 26 to Reloder 25. Both of those statements are definitely incorrect. We do state that the performance of Reloder 23 is similar to Reloder 22, and it is, in general burn speed terms, but they are most certainly not the same. We have worked quite a lot of recipes for Reloder 23, and they are not the same as Reloder 22. Reloder 26 is definitely slower burning than Reloder 25, so there shouldn’t be any confusion there either.”

Alliant Bofors Nitrochemie Reloader Reloading RL Reloder powder 22 23 25 26

Furrier says that RL 23 is NOT sensitive to temperature shifts: “Reloder 23 was developed to bring a truly temp-stable powder to the Reloder 22 burn-speed range using Bofors new process technology. This is the second product developed for us with this TZ® process, the first being AR-Comp™. We see terrific efficiencies, SDs, accuracy and flat temp response from these powders. Please try them, I think you will be impressed.”

Speed and More Speed with RL 26
Think of Reloder 26 as a high-velocity powder for big cartridges. Furrier explains: “Reloder 26 is produced with Nitrochemie’s latest generation EI® process technology. This is the same impregnation coating process used to produce Reloder 17, Reloder 33, and Reloder 50 for us, and it is fantastic. The “so what” on Reloder 26 is great ballistic efficiency, high bulk density so you can get more of the slow powder into the case to harness the energy, and decent, predictable extreme temp response. Reloder 26 is not as flat at temps as the TZ or Australian materials, but it is very manageable, usually in the 0.5 fps/°F range (depending on the application). Just as important, the pressure increases at hot are very manageable. We are using quite a bit of this powder in our Federal factory ammo due to the fantastic ballistics and accuracy.

Both of these new Reloder powders contain decoppering agent to help reduce coppering up your barrels, but this is nothing new for us. Bofors began adding decoppering agent to our Reloder rifle powders in the 2002 timeframe, and all our Swiss Reloders except 17 contain their proprietary additive. (We may include it in 17 at some point also, but right now we like it just the way it is.) Sorry we didn’t have a snappy name figured for the decoppering agents, we just did it.

Both of these new Reloder powders are also produced to the current highest level of ‘green’ technology. Actually, all of our Alliant rifle, pistol and shotshell reloading powders meet the current (tough) European requirements for elimination of nasty ingredients. They do not contain any dinitrotoluene or dibutylphthalate, which are a couple of the nasties that are commonly used in smokeless powders.
Thank you for your interest in our new powders.” — Paul Furrier, ATK

Reloder 23

Like AR-Comp™, new Reloder 23 from Alliant Powder performs consistently across temperature extremes. Its sophisticated TZ® technology manipulates the response of the material and resists the natural tendency to generate more pressure at higher temperatures and less pressure at lower temperatures. Reloder 23 is perfect for long-range target shooters seeking performance similar to Reloder 22 with world-class temperature stability.

Features & Benefits:
 TZ technology provides exceptionally consistent velocities across temp extremes
 Contains proprietary de-coppering additive
 Ideal for long-range target shooting
 Excellent lot-to-lot consistency
 Formulation contains no DNT or DPB
Made in Sweden for Alliant Powder

Reloder 26

Reloder 26 offer high velocities in large magnum cases. Achieve awesome ballistics with new Reloder 26 from Alliant Powder. The propellant’s burn speed falls between that of Reloder 22 and Reloder 33, and it incorporates EI® technology to produce extremely high velocities in magnum cartridges. Reloder 26 has a high bulk density that allows larger powder charges, and it provides a consistent, controlled response to temperature changes.

Features & Benefits:
 EI technology produces extremely high velocities in magnum cartridges
 Contains proprietary de-coppering additive
 Controlled temperature stability
 Excellent lot-to-lot consistency
 Formulation contains no DNT or DBP
Made in Switzerland for Alliant Powder

Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Gear Review, Reloading No Comments »