February 19th, 2019

$40 Plug-In Impeller Lets SmartPhone Work as Wind Reader

weatherflow wind meter anemometer wind gauge turbine smart phone iphone app

Gear Report by Kip Staton
Shooters in the market for an accurate anemometer that doesn’t break the bank need to take a hard look at the WeatherFlow Wind Meter, which retails on Amazon.com for just $39.89. Even though it is inexpensive, owner reviews have been generally very positive (so long as the software is compatible with your device). One Amazon reviewer says the WeatherFlow measures wind velocity as accurately a dedicated anemometer.

A big part of the reason the WeatherFlow Wind Meter is so inexpensive is that you’ve probably already got the brains of the system in your pocket. Yes, it connects to and communicates with any standard smartphone or tablet, in either iOS or Android flavors. Users simply download the free WeatherFlow Wind Meter app to their smart device, insert the anemometer into the headphone jack, and can immediately start measuring the wind.

weatherflow wind meter anemometer wind gauge turbine smart phone iphone app

weatherflow wind meter anemometer wind gauge turbine smart phone iphone appOf course, the first question any serious shooter will ask is “How accurate is this thing?” Pretty dang accurate, as it turns out. The device was calibrated by the University of Florida’s Aerospace Engineering Department, and the unique design allows it to consistently report to within a half a percentage point of the true wind value, even if the breeze is up to 15 degrees off-axis to the meter.

Wind speeds are measurable from as slow as two miles per hour to as high as 125 MPH. The Wind Meter outputs average, lull, and gusts windspeed data to your phone, with velocities indicated in 0.1 MPH increments. Furthermore, a hard-sided protective case is included for safe transportation.

Naturally, since the WeatherFlow Wind Meter is App-based, it’s connectable to a variety of social media websites and distribution sources. This makes saving and sharing information about climate conditions a breeze.

To read more gear reviews by Kip Staton, visit KipStaton.com.

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February 19th, 2019

Got Fifty? Add a .50 BMG to Your Collection for $2149.00

.50 Browning Machine Gun 50 BMG Noreen Rifle

No personal rifle collection is complete without a .50 BMG — the big boy. The single-shot, bolt-action Noreen is one of the most affordable Fifties. This 32-pound beast boasts a 34″ barrel with a massive muzzle brake. Simple and bomb proof, what more could you need? The .50 BMG Noreen Ultra Long Range (ULR) rifle features a single shot bolt action, 34″ barrel with 1:15″ twist, Noreen collapsible stock, A2 pistol grip, timney adjustable trigger, and Noreen muzzle brake with 1.25-12 thread. NOTE: The photo above shows one version with a custom camo paint job. You’ll have to do that yourself. The gun is available from EuroOptic.com at this $2149.00 price only with a matte black finish.

.50 Browning Machine Gun 50 BMG Noreen Rifle

The Noreen’s bolt is stout, sporting a large diameter bolt body. This jumbo-sized rifle comes with Timney trigger and AR-type pistol grip (which can be exchanged by purchaser). The wide bipod is included with the rifle. EuroOptic now offers the Noreen .50 BMG in Matte Black for $2149.00 price. Heck you could pay that much for a puny little .22 LR Anschutz. So go BIG instead — be the first on your block with a .50 BMG! You can also purchase this rig directly from Noreen Firearms, with a choice of four calibers: .338 Lapua Magnum, .408 CheyTac, .416 Barrett, and .50 BMG.

About the .50 BMG Cartridge

The .50 Browning Machine Gun (.50 BMG, aka 12.7×99mm NATO or 50 Browning) is a cartridge developed for the Browning .50 caliber machine gun in the late 1910s, entering official service in 1921. Under STANAG 4383, it is a standard cartridge for NATO forces as well as many non-NATO countries. John Browning had the idea for this round during World War I in response to a need for an anti-aircraft weapon, based on a scaled-up .30-06 Springfield design, used in a machine gun based on a scaled-up M1919/M1917 design that Browning had initially developed around 1900. According to the American Rifleman: “The Browning .50 originated in the Great War. American interest in an armor-piercing cartridge was influenced by the marginal French 11 mm design, prompting U.S. Army Ordnance officers to consult Browning. They wanted a heavy projectile at 2700 FPS, but the ammunition did not exist. Browning pondered the situation and, according to his son John, replied, ‘Well, the cartridge sounds pretty good to start. You make up some cartridges and we’ll do some shooting’.”

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February 18th, 2019

SHOT Show — 6.5 Guys Reveal New Rifles and Chassis Systems

65guys.com Ed Mobley Steve Lawrence Scope Optics SHOT Show Videos modular driven accuracy international seekins precision Tactical Long Range 2019

Every year our friends Ed and Steve, aka the 6.5 Guys, produce informative SHOT Show videos. These two hard-working dudes visited dozens of product booths during SHOT Show 2019, producing over 40 video interviews for 65Guys.com. Ed and Steve roamed the Expo Center finding the latest and greatest rifles, stocks, optics, and accessories. Here are five 6.5 Guys Videos about new rifles and chassis systems. Next week we’ll feature more 6.5 Guys videos covering new optics. You can see all 42 SHOT Show 2019 videos from Ed and Steve on the 6.5 Guys YouTube Channel.

Modular Driven Technologies

modular driven ACC chassis

Modular Driven Technologies (MDT) produces impressive chassis systems with innovative features, including modular weights. MDT is now a top choice for the PRS/NRL tactical disciplines. Steve was quite impressed by the new MDT ACC. See more at MDTTac.com.

Accuracy International — Mile High Shooting Accessories

One of the most impressive rifles at SHOT Show 2019 was the massive Accuracy Int’l Advanced Sniper Rifle (ASR) at the Mile High Shooting Accessories booth. The Advanced Sniper Rifle (ASR) will be submitted for SOCOM’s multi-caliber rifle program. It is offered in a $19,544 deployment kit with three barrels: (.308 Win, .300 Norma Mag, and .338 Norma Mag).

Seekins Precision — Complete Rifles and Actions

2019 shot show 6.5 Guys chassis system rifles

Seekins Precision showcased some impressive custom actions plus complete rifles for both tactical competitors and long range hunters. We were impressed with the build quality of the Seekins precision rifles. We liked the new Seekins Havak Bravo, and the Seekins action has some interesting features, such as four locking lugs with 90° bolt throw. Full Seekins Havak Bravo Review.

Gunwerks — Long Range Precision Rifles

Gunwerks is more than a builder of expensive (some say over-priced) rifles. It also sells branded electro-optics, and suppressors. Gunwerks also runs shooting clinics, and has hundreds of training and hunting videos on the Gunwerks YouTube channel. We like what Gunwerks is doing in the media space. Here the 6.5 Guys showcase some of the latest rifle and stock options from Gunwerks. Steve said he liked the adjustability and ergonomics on the Gunwerks stocks.

Legacy Sports International (Howa)

Legacy Sports Int’l (LSI) offers a variety of hunting and tactical rifles featuring the smooth-running Howa actions from Japan. At SHOT Show 2019, Legacy previewed a new tactical rig featuring a modular MDT Oryx chassis and Howa 1500 barreled action. The 6.5 Guys got to shoot this rig during media day and were impressed. This will be offered for Howa Short, Long, and Mini Actions.

2019 shot show 6.5 Guys chassis system rifles

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February 18th, 2019

Bargain Finder 178: 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, optics, 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. CDNN — Weatherby Vanguard 6.5 Creedmoor Rifle, $799.99

Weatherby Vanguard Modular rifle 6.5 Creedmoor

This is a great deal. MSRP on the Weatherby Vanguard Modular Rifle in 6.5 Creedmoor was $1519.00. Now you can buy this rig for just $799.99 on sale. That’s less than you’d pay for most custom actions by themselves. Yes this Weatherby rifle qualifies for PRS Production class — it’s 100% within the rules. Put the hundreds of dollars you save into optics, ammo, and a suppressor — the 20″ barrel comes pre-threaded for brake or suppressor. This rifle has a nice 2-stage trigger, and Luth AR adjustable buttstock fitted to a CNC-machined anodized aluminum chassis. Weatherby guarantees SUB-MOA accuracy with premium ammo.

2. NEW — Frankford Intelli-Dropper Scale/Dispenser, $199.99

powder scale dispenser chargemaster intellidropper intell-dropper frankford arsenal smart mobile app bluetooth

Intelli-Dropper Priced Under $200.00: The new Frankford Arsenal Intelli-Dropper will be available very soon from leading vendors such as Midsouth, Grafs.com, and MidwayUSA for around $199.99.

A new electronic powder scale/dispenser just hit the market to compete with units from Lyman, RCBS, and Hornady. The new Frankford Arsenal Platinum Series “Intelli-Dropper” is a true “new generation” device with an advanced brain that can “talk” to a Mobile App on your smartphone via BlueTooth. This way you can store powder and load information on your smartphone and then control the scale/dispenser from the App. The App also has bullet, cartridge, and powder databases. The Intelli-dropper can also manually trickle, so you can save time by throwing your charge and then just trickling to the final tenth.

3. Midsouth — Rock Chucker Supreme Reloading Kit, $299.99

Deals of Week RCBS Rock Chucker Supreme Kit

Everything you see above can be yours for just $299.99. Great Deal. Right now, Midsouth is selling the Rock Chucker Supreme Master Reloading Kit for $299.99, a fine price considering all the hardware you get: Press, Primer Tool, Scale, Powder Measure, Loading Tray, Reloading Manual and more. Heck, the Rock Chucker press alone is worth $165.00+. This is good starter kit for any reloader with sturdy items (such as the Rock Chucker press), that will last a lifetime.

4. GunBuyer.com — Walther 9mm PPQ Q5 Match, $649.00

Walther competition PPQ Q5 match polymer pistol handgun 9mm

Are you looking to compete in Action Pistol Matches or 3-Gun Disciplines? Here’s a 9mm competition-ready pistol capable of winning Production Class right out of the box. The Walther PPQ Q5 Match can be used with iron sights or popular red dot optics. The gun balances well and the relieved slide helps reduce cycle time for fast transitions. At $649.00 from GunBuyer.com (the “best price anywhere”) the Walther PPQ Q5 Match is a fraction of the cost of a custom race gun. It’s a good choice for Production class.

5. Brownells — Presidents’ Day Sale — Big Discounts

Brownells Presidents Day Sale February 2019 discount Aero Precision Howa Barreled action

Brownells Howa Barreled Action RCBS ChargeMaster Lite powder dispenser Aero Precision Lower AR

Brownells is running a major Presidents’ Day Sale with huge price reductions on guns, barreled actions, uppers, lowers, reloading tools, accessories, loaded ammo and more. A quick glance at the Brownells website revealed many killer deals — some of the best prices we’ve seen in many months on many highly desirable products, such as Howa Barreled Actions, Aero Precision components, CCI Ammo, and even the RCBS ChargeMaster Lite. Don’t hesitate — this sale ends soon!

6. EuroOptic — 50% Off GRS Berserk Rem and Howa Stocks

Remington Howa Long Short GRS Berserk composite rifle stocks

Now through February 21st get 50% OFF select GRS Berserk Stocks for Remington and Howa actions. These Norwegian-crafted stocks combine outstanding ergonomics with advanced composite construction. Length of pull and cheek height adjust instantly with the push of a button. Combine one of these stocks with a Remington Barreled Action, and a Vortex Closeout Riflescope to create an outstanding LR prone or hunting rifle for under $1500.00.

7. EuroOptic — Leica CRF 2000-B, $399.00

Leica 2000-B Rangemaster Laser LRF Rangefinder Sale Eurooptics.com

Here’s a great deal on the vaunted Leica 2000-B Laser Rangefinder (LRF) with 7-power optic. This unit is rated out to 2000 yards on reflective objects. The Leica 2000-B features air pressure and temperature sensors, plus on-board inclinometer. Angle correction works out to 1200 horizontal yards equivalent, with the true hold-over displayed in both MILs and MOA. The compact Leica CRF 2000-B weighs just 6.5 ounces and measures 4.5″ L x 2.25″ H x 1.25″ W. It has a waterproof outer shell.

8. Champions Choice — Deluxe 58″-Long Rifle Case, $68.00

Champion's Choice extra long palma rifle case 58

Many of our readers shoot Palma, F-Class, and ELR rifles with long barrels (up to 35″). It’s difficult to find high-quality, well-padded cases that fit very long rifles. Champion’s Choice offers just such a product, the 58″ Deluxe Soft Rifle Case. With thick 1″ padding on each side, big pockets, and backpack straps, this black/blue/white gun case has earned rave reviews from our Forum members. There’s plenty of room for big scopes, and it even comes with an internal tube to hold your cleaning rod.

9. Amazon — Neiko Digital Calipers, $17.85

Amazon Neiko Digital Caliper

Even if you have a good set of calipers, you may want to get one of these Neiko 01407A Digital Calipers. The #1 best-selling digital caliper on Amazon.com, this Neiko tool features a large LCD Screen and measures up to 6.0 inches. With over 3800 customer reviews, this product has earned an overall rating of 4.4 out of 5 stars. It’s hard to go wrong for $17.85, even if you just use these as a spare set for measuring group sizes and case trim lengths.

10. Midsouth — 250 Adhesive Precision Targets on Roll, $12.49

midsouth adhesive benchrest precision target roll

Midsouth offers 250 self-adhesive Benchrest Targets on a convenient roll. These stick-on targets are great for load development. The aiming diamond helps align the cross hairs of your scope while the 1/4″ grid pattern makes it easy to eyeball your group size. At the bottom are fields for your load info. Each Target sticker measures 6″ x 4″ with a 4.5″ x 2.5″ printed area. Midsouth sells the 250-target roll for $12.49.

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February 18th, 2019

READ THIS — Powder Storage — How to Avoid Problems

Western Powders Blog SAAMI Storage

SUMMARY: Powder can have a very long shelf life. You need to watch for changes in smell and color. A reddish tinge, almost like rust on the powder, is a bad sign, as is a foul odor, not to be confused with a normal chemical smell. Either of these signs indicate it is time to dispose of your powder by means other than shooting.

Ever wondered about the stability of the propellants in your reloading room? There are some important things you should know about powder storage, to ensure consistent powder performance and safety. On its website, Western Powders (vendors of Accurate, Norma, and Ramshot powders) published an informative Q & A series entitled Dear Labby: Questions for our Ballistics Lab. Here are some excerpts that pertain to powder storage and shelf life. Worried that your powder may be too old? Western’s experts explain how to check your propellants for warning signs.

Proper Powder Storage

Q: I live in southern Arizona where it is very hot. I am told powders will become unstable if stored in an area not air-conditioned. My wife says no powder or primers in the house. Can powder be stored in a refrigerator? What about using a fireproof safe? I would appreciate your ideas. — M.C.

Lab Answer: SAAMI guidelines are pretty clear on issues of storage. They recommend storing smokeless powder in containers that will not allow pressure to build if the powder is ignited — ruling out gun safes and refrigerators.

CLICK HERE to Read SAAMI Guidelines for Powder Storage (PDF)

In their original containers smokeless powder’s lifespan is quite long, even in your hot, arid climate, typically longer than the average handloader would need to store them. Stored safely in a garage or outbuilding, your powder should last years. If you see the powder developing a reddish tint, or giving off a foul odor, it is time to discard it.

Clumps in Powder Container

Q: I ordered some of your Accurate 1680 powder back about in December. I just now opened it … and it is full of clumps. My knowledge tells me that means moisture. Am I wrong? I just now broke the seal and it has been stored in a ammo can with desiccant packs around it and a dehumidifier running 14-16 hours a day. I can’t imagine this being my fault, if this does indicate moisture. I don’t know if the pink part on the label is suppose to be red or not, but it is definitely pink, so if it was red I am wondering if I was shipped an old container? I hope that this isn’t bad and I am stuck with it…

Lab Answer: All powder contains a certain amount of moisture. When the powder is stored or during shipping, it can go through temperature cycles. During the cycling, the moisture can be pulled to the surface and cause clumping. Clumping can also be caused by static electricity if too dry or the powder has limited graphite content. You can break up the clumps before metering and they shouldn’t be a problem. This will not affect the powder performance, so your product is fine. Accurate 1680 labels are designed in Pink. As a side note, specification for testing powder is at 70° F and 60% humidity.

(more…)

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February 17th, 2019

Don’t Kill the Chrono! Setting up Chronos to Avoid Stray Shots

chronograph placement, shooting chrony, chrono, advisory, tech tip

There is nothing more frustrating (or embarassing) than sending a live round into your expensive new chronograph. As the photo below demonstrates, with most types of chronographs (other than the barrel-hung Magnetospeed), you can fatally injure your expensive chrono if it is not positioned precisely.

When setting up a chrono, we always unload the rifle, remove the bolt and bore-sight to ensure that the path of the bullet is not too low. When bore-sighting visually, set up the rifle securely on the sandbags and look through the bore, breech to muzzle, lining up the barrel with your aim point on the target. Then (during an appropriate cease-fire), walk behind the chronograph. Looking straight back through the “V” formed by the sky-screens, you should be able to see light at the end of the barrel if the gun is positioned correctly. You can also use an in-chamber, laser bore-sighter to confirm the visual boresighting (see photo).

Laser boresighter chronograph

Adjust the height, angle and horizontal position of the chronograph so the bullet will pass through the middle of the “V” below the plastic diffusers, no less than 5″ above the light sensors. We put tape on the front sky-screen supports to make it easier to determine the right height over the light sensors.

Use a Test Backer to Confirm Your Bullet Trajectory
You can put tape on the support rods about 6″ up from the unit. This helps you judge the correct vertical height when setting up your rifle on the bags. Another trick is to hang a sheet of paper from the rear skyscreen and then use a laser boresighter to shine a dot on the paper (with the gun planted steady front and rear). This should give you a good idea (within an inch or so) of the bullet’s actual flight path through the “V” over the light sensors. Of course, when using a laser, never look directly at the laser! Instead shine the laser away from you and see where it appears on the paper.

chronograph set-up

Alignment of Chronograph Housing
Make sure the chrono housing is parallel to the path of the bullet. Don’t worry if the unit is not parallel to the ground surface. What you want is the bullet to pass over both front and rear sensors at the same height. Don’t try to set the chrono height in reference to the lens of your scope–as it sits 1″ to 2″ above your bore axis. To avoid muzzle blast interference, set your chronograph at least 10 feet from the end of the muzzle (or the distance recommended by the manufacturer).

chronograph laser sky screens

Rifles with Elevated Iron Sights
All too often rookie AR15 shooters forget that AR sights are positioned roughly 2.4″ above the bore axis (at the top of the front sight blade). If you set your bullet pass-through point using your AR’s front sight, the bullet will actually be traveling 2.4″ lower as it goes through the chrono. That’s why we recommend bore-sighting and setting the bullet travel point about 5-8″ above the base of the sky-screen support shafts. (Or the vertical distance the chronograph maker otherwise recommends). NOTE: You can make the same mistake on a scoped rifle if the scope is set on very tall rings, so the center of the cross-hairs is much higher than the bore axis line.

Laser boresighter chronograph

TARGET AIM POINT: When doing chrono work, we suggest you shoot at a single aiming point no more than 2″ in diameter (on your target paper). Use that aiming point when aligning your chrono with your rifle’s bore. If you use a 2″ bright orange dot, you should be able to see that through the bore at 100 yards. Using a single 2″ target reduces the chance of a screen hit as you shift points of aim. If you shoot at multiple target dots, place them in a vertical line, and bore sight on the lowest dot. Always set your chron height to set safe clearance for the LOWEST target dot, and then work upwards only.

Other Chronograph Tips from Forum Members:

When using a chronograph, I put a strip of masking tape across the far end of the skyscreens about two-thirds of the way up. This gives me a good aiming or bore-sighting reference that’s well away from the pricey bits. I learned that one the hard way. — GS Arizona

A very easy and simple tool to help you set up the chronograph is a simple piece of string! Set your gun (unloaded of course) on the rest and sight your target. Tie one end of the string to the rear scope ring or mount, then pull the string along the barrel to simulate the bullet path. With the string showing the bullet’s path, you can then easily set the chronograph’s placement left/right, and up/down. This will also let you set the chrono’s tilt angle and orientation so the sensors are correctly aligned with the bullet path. — Wayne Shaw

If shooting over a chrono from the prone position off a bipod or similar, beware of the muzzle sinking as recoil causes the front of the rifle to drop. I “killed” my first chronograph shooting off a gravel covered firing point where I’d not given enough clearance to start with and an inch or two drop in the muzzle caused a bullet to clip the housing. — Laurie Holland

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February 16th, 2019

Rimfire 17s — Three Great Options: 17 HMR, 17 Mach 2, 17 WMS

17 mach 2 .17 hm2 volquartsen summit

There are three readily-available 17-caliber rimfire rounds now on the market: 17 HMR, 17 WSM, and 17 Mach 2(aka 17 HM2). Aguila also made a .17 rimfire, the .17 PMC/Aguila, but it never became popular. What should be your choice? The 17 HMR is a very popular round, available from multiple manufacturers — CCI, Hornady, and now Norma. The 17 Mach 2 (HM2) is making a resurgence, as it is less expensive than 17 HMR and it can be shot from rifles converted from .22 LR since it shares the .22 LR cartridge OAL. Finally the 17 WSM is, without question, the performance leader among .17-Cal rimfire rounds.

17 HMR — Still the Market Leader in 17-Cal Rimfires

The 17 HMR (Hornady Magnum Rimfire) is popular and well-established. Ammo with a variety of bullet weights and designs is available. Most 17 HMR ammo is priced from $10-$12 per box, and you can get some better deals during sales.

17 mach 2 .17 hm2 volquartsen summit

You can buy quality 17 HMR rifles from many makers at all price levels. The Savage A17 with laminated thumbhole stock is a good choice. There were some early issues with the A17, but Savage improved the magwell and now this rifle is very reliable and accurate, particularly with the CCI-brand A17 ammo.

The laminated thumbhole stock version of the Savage A17 is a great carry-around varminter.
Savage A17 laminated varmint rifle

Ruger now makes a .17 HMR version of the Ruger Precision Rifle. If you prefer a modular chassis type rig, this is a great option:

Here is a semi-auto 17 HMR fitted with a suppressor. Even with the cameraman just 20 feet away, you can barely hear the shot, and recoil is non-existent. (NOTE: be sure to turn on the sound icon). Varminter Magazine says: “No ground squirrels were spooked during these shots. Quiet is an understatement!”. This may be the ultimate stealth varminter set-up.

17 Mach 2 (17 HM2) — Best Bang for the Buck?

The 17 Mach 2 (17 HM2) is making a comeback. Now leading manufacturers are offering this efficient little rimfire cartridge in some nice rifles. Both Anschutz and Volquartsen will offer new 17 Mach 2 rifles in 2019. Check out this Volquartsen Summit from SHOT Show. It offers a slick, straight-pull toggle bolt, like you’d find on Olympic biathlon rifles.

17 mach 2 .17 hm2 volquartsen summit

Considering that 17 HMR ammo costs $10 to $15 a box, the 17 Mach 2 is an excellent value by comparison. You can now get 50 rounds of CCI 17 Mach 2 for just $6.55 at Midsouth. Grab it while you can.

17 mach 2 .17 hm2 volquartsen summit

The Mach 2 propels the same 17gr V-Max bullet as the 17 HMR, but the Mach 2 runs about 16% slower — 2100 fps vs. 2500 for the 17 HMR. For many shooters, it makes sense to use the 17 Mach 2 rather than a 17 HMR. You save money, barrel life is a little longer, and the 17 Mach 2 is still a much more potent cartridge than the .22 LR. Check out this comparison, and note how the 17 Mach 2 has a much flatter trajectory than the .22 LR:

17 Mach 2 hm2 .22 LR comparison

Hornady’s 17 Mach 2 has a 2100 FPS muzzle velocity vs. 1255 FPS for .22 LR.

17 WSM — More Speed, More Energy, and Flatter Trajectory

The 17 WSM (“Winchester Super Magnum”) is the fastest, flattest-shooting rimfire round you can buy. It totally stomps the .22 LR, and even offers significantly better ballistics than the popular 17 HMR. Check out this comparison of three rimfire magnmum cartridges (17 WMS, 17 HMR, and 22 WMR):

17 WSM Winchester Super Magnum

And now lead-free 17 WSM ammo is available. This “unleaded” version is impressively flat-shooting. With a 100-yard zero, it drops only 4.3 inches at 200 yards. Compare that with a .22 LR which can drop 18 inches or more from 100 to 200 yards (based on 1150 fps MV).

17 WSM Winchester Super Magnum lead-Free

CLICK HERE for 17 WSM lead-free ammo test article.
17 WSM rimfire ammo test

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February 15th, 2019

Mercedes of Reloading Presses — $960 Turban Präzipress

Prazipress cnc reloading single stage press Gavin Gear Ultimate Reloader YouTube

When is a single-stage reloading press worth close to a thousand bucks? When it’s made in Germany with CNC technology and crafted to aero-space precision standards. UltimateReloader.com’s Gavin Gear recently got his hands on a Turban 120mm Heavy Präzipress. This unit retails for 850 Euros (850,00 €), about $960 at current exchange rates. Gavin put the Präzipress through its paces, and came away VERY impressed. READ FULL REVIEW HERE.

Prazipress cnc reloading single stage press Gavin Gear Ultimate Reloader YouTubeImpressive Test Results
Sizing once-fired 6.5mm Creedmoor cases with the Präzipress, Gavin achieved great results for shoulder “bump” consistency. The sizing results were nothing short of spectacular. After zeroing the first of ten cases, the remaining nine were essentially identical, showing as “0.000”, meaning less than half a thousandth of variation.

The Präzipress also delivered ultra-low run-out when seating bullets using a Forster die. On all ten test cases, the run-out was +/- 0.001″ (one-thousandth) or less.

Is this kind of press worth the money? Gavin says “yes” if you demand the highest level of precision in sizing and seating: “When you use this press, it’s immediately clear that there are no details neglected, and I can’t imagine one of these presses ever wearing out. Based on the precision tests I did with ammunition loading, it’s clear that this level of precision DOES make a difference for ammunition dimensions and consistency.”

Prazipress cnc reloading single stage press Gavin Gear Ultimate Reloader YouTube

READ FULL Präzipress REVIEW on UltimateReloader.com HERE »

According to Gavin, the “Heavy” 120mm version of the Präzipress is massive and boasts many notable design features:

— Three guide rods with linear roller guides (I have not seen these on any other press)
— Ambidextrous operation (handle can be mounted on left or right side)
— Positive snap shellholder retainer (secure, but easy to insert/remove shellholder)
— 120mm opening accepts cartridges up to .338 Lapua Magnum length
— Enclosed spent primer catch system which contains debris
— Optimized leverage (VERY powerful mechanical advantage for sizing)
— Oversized handle (bar diameter) that minimizes flex

Prazipress cnc reloading single stage press Gavin Gear Ultimate Reloader YouTube

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February 15th, 2019

Save Big Bucks During Brownells Presidents’ Day Sale

Brownells Presidents Day Sale February 2019 discount Aero Precision Howa Barreled action

Break out those credit cards ladies and gentlemen… Brownells is running a major Presidents’ Day Sale with huge price reductions on guns, barreled actions, uppers, lowers, reloading tools, accessories, loaded ammo and more. A quick glance at the Brownells website revealed many killer deals — some of the best prices we’ve seen in many months on many highly desirable products, such as Howa Barreled Actions, Aero Precision components, CCI Ammo, and even the RCBS ChargeMaster Lite.

Here are eight great deals we found this morning. Visit the Brownells SALE PAGE to see more bargains.

Brownells Howa Barreled Action RCBS ChargeMaster Lite powder dispenser
Aero Precision Lower AR Aero Precision Assembled AR Upper
BRN BRN-22 rimfire receiver action .22 LR CCI Blazer brass 9mm 9x19 ammo ammunition
Brownells AR Bolt 224 Valkyrie AR15 Upper AR Geissele trigger assembly

BRN 180

BRN-180 — Retro Or Cutting Edge?
Brownells’ new BRN-180 Upper is a gas-piston system that is compatible with AR Lowers but offers a folding stock. This system, inspired by the original AR-180, runs cleaner than a typical AR15. Designed in conjunction with PWS and FM Products, the Brownells BRN-180 Upper Receiver is inspired by the Armalite AR-180 of the 1960s. Developed as a successor to the original AR-15, the AR-180 was a civilian version of the AR-18, itself an upgrade on the M16 platform. The BRN-180 incorporates many AR-18/AR-180 improvements, including its robust and reliable gas piston operating system. The BRN-180 upper receiver is fully compatible with any standard AR-15 lower receiver. However, the BRN-180 can run a folding stock because a spring over the gas piston replaces the buffer in the stock.

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February 14th, 2019

Two Guns in One — TubeGun Transformed for F-Open Competition

Eliseo R1 tube gun tubegun chassis F-Class F-Open .284 Winchester

The Berger Southwest Nationals is taking place right now at the Ben Avery Range outside Phoenix, Arizona. At the SWN you’ll see prone rifles and tubeguns for sling shooters, F-TR rifles with fancy bipods, and high-tech F-Open rigs. You might also see a few TubeGuns converted to shoot F-Open off front rests. Yes this is an easy conversion thanks to Gary Eliseo’s clever PickleFork forearm attachment.

Eliseo R1 tube gun tubegun chassis F-Class F-Open .284 Winchester

Forum Member Killick attached PickleForks to his handsome blue Eliseo R1 TubeGun now chambered in .284 Winchester, a top choice for the F-Open discipline. Killick explains: “Behold! An Eliseo R1 F-Classer. This started out as an R1 Long Range sling rifle (6XC) with a Borden TubeGun action. It is now rebarreled in .284 Win with Gary’s PickleFork fore-end adaptor. Props to Gary Eliseo at Competition Machine LLC.

Killick adds: “I like how the original fore-end indexes off the back side of the front bag. No need for the front bumper attachment.” Check it out below:

Eliseo R1 tube gun tubegun chassis F-Class F-Open .284 Winchester

Eliseo R1 tube gun tubegun chassis F-Class F-Open .284 Winchester

PickleForks are rails that fit to the sides of the tubular fore-end/handguard on Eliseo Chassis systems. This allows you to use a pedestal-style front rest for F-Class competition. It also provides a much more stable platform for load testing, varmint hunting, or any kind of rest-assisted precision shooting. These new PickleForks transform a Tubegun into an ultra-stable, straight-tracking rig when used with a competition-style front rest.

Eliseo Competition Machine pickle fork picklefork foreend bag rider rails

Designer Gary Eliseo explains: “Now you can have the same super low-boreline, long wheelbase and vertical sides of our innovative F1 F-Class chassis system for your tube chassis. The PickleForks attach directly to the sides of the F-Class/Tactical fore-ends, no modifications are required. They are very rigid with no flex or twist and make the rifle track like it’s on rails.” The Eliseo Competition Machine PickleForks are offered for a very reasonable $70.00 per pair, with Cerakote finish. You get two metal units, one for each side of the fore-arm. For more info, visit GotXRing.com or call (928) 649-0742.

Permalink Competition, Gunsmithing, New Product, Tactical No Comments »
February 14th, 2019

Young 3-Gun Sensation Cheyenne Dalton

Cheyenne Dalton cute shooter 3-Gun Lyman Rimfire Challenge

One of America’s top young 3-gun shooters is a talented young lady from Missouri, Cheyenne Dalton. Now in her final year of High School, 17-year-old Cheyenne has been a top competitor in Rimfire Challenge events, as well as 3-gun matches and USPSA comps. Read more about Cheyenne in Shooting Sports USA.

Cheyenne Dalton cute shooter 3-Gun Lyman Rimfire ChallengeCheyenne’s skills have earned her support from leading companies including Lyman Products and Volquartsen. Lyman recently announced it would sponsor Cheyenne, a rising star in the shooting world. Dalton, who has been shooting competitively for 6 years, said her main goal is to introduce as many women and girls as she can to shooting sports. Dalton has helped promote the shooting sports through social media. Along with shooting tips, Cheyenne’s social media pages cover fishing, bluegrass music, and personal motivation. Cheyenne was even in a 2016 New Yorker article titled “The Gun Owners of the Parkland Generation.”

Dalton is a two-time Ladies Limited Rimfire World Champion, a one-time Junior Limited Rimfire World Champion, a Wyoming state games gold medalist in rimfire, and a High Lady Alabama state Rimfire Champion. Most recently, she was featured in the Fall 2018 edition of Recoil Magazine. Dalton will join the shooting team at Missouri Valley College in the Fall of 2019.

Cheyenne shows off her impressive 3-Gun speed and accuracy in this action video:

Junior 3-Gun sensation Cheyenne Dalton talks with Shooting USA at the NRA Show in Louisville:

Cheyenne Dalton cute shooter 3-Gun Lyman Rimfire Challenge

This outstanding video showcases Cheyenne’s musical talents as well as her shooting skills. Cheyenne is really a remarkable young lady, with a great work ethic.

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February 14th, 2019

Epic Facebook Post — Rifle Ranges vs. Golf Courses

Golf shooting range

“Golf — the willful misuse of a perfectly good rifle range.”
Here’s a humorous illustration that pokes fun at the game of golf. We posted this on Facebook a couple seasons back. To our great surprise this generated 356 shares, and reached 22,000+ readers, making this the most popular AccurateShooter Facebook post ever at the time.

So, what do you think — should golf courses be converted to shooting ranges? Is golf truly a “good [shoot] spoiled”? This photo was shared by our shooting buddy Jim de Kort from Holland.

CLICK HERE to follow us on Facebook.
Click the LIKE button to get regular updates.

Here are some comments from our Facebook fans:

“Actually golf and shooting are similar sports. Trying to shoot a small object into a small hole from long range.” — Eric A.

“You can hit a golf ball 300 yards, but I can hit a golf ball AT 1000 yards.” — Zach S.

“The game should be changed. You should hit the ball out as far as possible, then get your rifle out and hit the golf ball. The most golf balls hits… with the rifle wins!” — Hui H.

Some rifle ranges certainly are beautiful enough to be country clubs. Here is the scenic General Vokes Range in British Columbia, Canada:

General Vokes range chilliwack British Columbia BC Canada

Permalink News, Tactical 1 Comment »
February 13th, 2019

Universal Background Check Legislation Introduced in Congress

H.R. HR 8 bill private gun sales ban background check Congress democrat legislation anti-gun Pelosi democrat extreme anti-gun Second Amendment
Marlin 1895 Background image from Sportsmans Arms, Petaluma, CA.

Are the days of private gun sales numbered nationwide? Democrats in the U.S. House of Representative have introduced an extreme gun control measure, H.R. 8, that would regulate all private gun sales, circumventing state laws covering gun rights. American Military News reports: “A new bill restricting private gun sales is expected to move to the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives this week for a vote. The bill, H.R. 8, was introduced by [House] Democrats. H.R. 8 plans to stop Americans from conducting private gun sales as they have been since 1791. Instead, they will be required to conduct background checks on prospective buyers before they can sell their own property. The House Judiciary Panel is expected to send the bill to the floor for a vote on Feb. 13.”

READ H.R. 8 Full Text HERE »

Background Checks Would Be Required Nationwide for ALL Private Party Gun Sales
This new legislation would essentially require that ALL gun sales, even between private parties, be subject to Federal NICS background checks.* On the surface, this seems to have some appeal, but there is little convincing evidence that such legislation will produce a meaningful reduction in gun violence. Why? Criminals obtain guns illegally (though theft and the black market), and nearly all the mass shooters in recent years have used weapons that were obtained legally, AFTER the perpetrators had passed normal FBI background checks.

Despite these facts, supporters of H.R. 8, say it is time to outlaw private gun sales. Rep. Henry C. Johnson (Democrat, Georgia) claimed: “Because background checks are not required for sales by unlicensed gun dealers, guns end up in the hands of dangerous people. The failure of Congress to pass universal background check legislation has eroded our sense of safety on the streets, in our schools, and even in our places of worship.”

Conversely, gun rights supporters state that H.R. 8 will NOT have the desired effects. Rep. Doug Collins (Republican, Georgia) stated: “I appreciate the efforts of those who want H.R. 8 and many who have signed on, but similar gun control measures would not have prevented Columbine, San Bernardino, Charleston, or other tragedies. You go to the Bureau of Prisons, when they put out their statistics, most criminals — as you well know — do not get their guns from legal sources.”


* Some states, such as California, already require background checks, made through an FFL, for private-party transfers. But in many other states, a private party can still sell a firearm to another private party, provided there is compliance with applicable state and local laws.

Permalink Handguns, Hunting/Varminting, News 3 Comments »
February 13th, 2019

Save Money with Brownells Discount Codes

Brownells coupon shopping discount code June 2018

Shopping for gun parts, ammo, or reloading supplies? You will want to check out Brownells current Discount Codes. These Codes will qualify you for significant savings plus FREE Shipping. Use these Codes during check-out and the savings will reduce your net cost. Get up to $20 off on a $200 purchase — that’s a 10% savings. Plus the free shipping/handling could save you another $10-$20 easy. NOTE: Some of these discount codes may expire at any time, so don’t hesitate.

Coupon Code: M8Y — $20 off $200 + Free S/H
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Coupon Code: NCS — $15 OFF $150 + Free S/H
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Coupon Code: LAV — $10 OFF $100 + Free S/H
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Coupon Code: NBM — $10 OFF $99 + Free S/H
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Coupon Code: NEP — $10 Off $75 + Free S/H
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Coupon Code: VB5 or M7R — Free S/H over $49
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Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Hot Deals, Reloading No Comments »
February 12th, 2019

New $199.99 Powder Scale/Dispenser with Mobile App

powder scale dispenser chargemaster intellidropper intell-dropper frankford arsenal smart mobile app bluetooth

Intelli-Dropper Priced Under $200.00: The new Frankford Arsenal Intelli-Dropper will be available very soon from leading vendors such as Midsouth, Grafs.com, and MidwayUSA for around $199.99.

A new electronic powder scale/dispenser just hit the market to compete with units from Lyman, RCBS, and Hornady. The new Frankford Arsenal Platinum Series “Intelli-Dropper” scale/dispenser looks similar to a ChargeMaster Lite, with a LED digital touch-screen. But it is a true “new generation” device with an advanced brain that can “talk” to a Mobile App on your smartphone via BlueTooth. This way you can store powder and load information on your smartphone and then control the scale/dispenser from the App. Advantages? You could list different loads for different bullets, and you can also keep a complete history of your loading for different cartridges. For years this Editor recorded his load data via a spreadsheet on a laptop computer. Now you can have the equivalent of a loading spreadsheet right in your phone.

Frankford Arsenal Platinum Series Intelli-Dropper FEATURES
Large Back-lit LCD Display
Auto and Manual Trickle capability
Holds up to 7,000 grains (1 lb) of powder
Bluetooth Capability
Downloadable App Functionality
App Has Powder and Bullet Databases

Manual Trickle Capability — Nice!
Another cool feature is that you can use the machine to manual trickle. So you could throw powder rapidly with a manual powder measure then “trickle up” to the final tenth of a grain.

powder scale dispenser chargemaster intellidropper intell-dropper frankford arsenal smart mobile app bluetoothIntelli-Dropper Controls
The Frankford Arsenal Platinum Series Electronic Intelli-Dropper features an individual powder calibration button for the fastest, most accurate powder measurements. The large back-lit LCD display provides easy-to-see controls. The machine stores load data in your downloadable smart-phone or tablet App. The Intelli-Dropper features BOTH Auto and Manual trickle capability with up to 200 grains of powder per throw. Holds up to 7,000 grains (1 lb) of powder and offers +/- 0.1 grain accuracy.

Mobile App Features
The Intelli-Dropper’s downloadable App features bullet and powder databases, with the ability to add additional bullets/powders. The App stores your load data, and comes with info already stored in the App including cartridge list, powder list. Plus the bullet list is very detailed with bullet type, caliber, weight, ballistic coefficient, sectional density, and length. The App lets you input charge weight, case, primer type, barrel length and more. And the App can even upload photos of your test targets — so you can record group size accuracy results. That’s cool.

Permalink New Product, News, Reloading 1 Comment »
February 12th, 2019

How to Avoid a Train Wreck at the Berger SW Nationals

train wreck Bryan Litz shooting tips ballistics

Today is Day One of the Berger Southwest Nationals, at the Ben Avery Range outside Phoenix, AZ. There will be a 600-yard mid-range match. Many of the nation’s most talented F-Class and sling shooters will be there. But no matter what your skill level, it is still possible to make major mistakes, that can spoil the day and/or put you out of the running for the entire match.

Berger SW Nationals mid-range match
Photo by Sherri Jo Gallagher.

Berger SW Nationals mid-range match

In any shooting competition, you must try to avoid major screw-ups that can ruin your day (or your match). In this article, past F-TR National Mid-Range and Long Range Champion Bryan Litz talks about “Train Wrecks”, i.e. those big disasters (such as equipment failures) that can ruin a whole match. Bryan illustrates the types of “train wrecks” that commonly befall competitors, and he explains how to avoid these “unmitigated disasters”.

Urban Dictionary “Train Wreck” Definition: “A total @#$&! disaster … the kind that makes you want to shake your head.”

train wreck Bryan Litz shooting tips ballisticsTrain Wrecks (and How to Avoid Them)
by Bryan Litz of Applied Ballistics LLC.

Success in long range competition depends on many things. Those who aspire to be competitive are usually detail-oriented, and focused on all the small things that might give them an edge. Unfortunately it’s common for shooters lose sight of the big picture — missing the forest for the trees, so to speak.

Consistency is one of the universal principles of successful shooting. The tournament champion is the shooter with the highest average performance over several days, often times not winning a single match. While you can win tournaments without an isolated stellar performance, you cannot win tournaments if you have a single train wreck performance. And this is why it’s important for the detail-oriented shooter to keep an eye out for potential “big picture” problems that can derail the train of success!

Train wrecks can be defined differently by shooters of various skill levels and categories. Anything from problems causing a miss, to problems causing a 3/4-MOA shift in wind zero can manifest as a train wreck, depending on the kind of shooting you’re doing.

Berger SW Nationals
Photo by Sherri Jo Gallagher.

Below is a list of common Shooting Match Train Wrecks, and suggestions for avoiding them.

1. Cross-Firing. The fastest and most common way to destroy your score (and any hopes of winning a tournament) is to cross-fire. The cure is obviously basic awareness of your target number on each shot, but you can stack the odds in your favor if you’re smart. For sling shooters, establish your Natural Point of Aim (NPA) and monitor that it doesn’t shift during your course of fire. If you’re doing this right, you’ll always come back on your target naturally, without deliberately checking each time. You should be doing this anyway, but avoiding cross-fires is another incentive for monitoring this important fundamental. In F-Class shooting, pay attention to how the rifle recoils, and where the crosshairs settle. If the crosshairs always settle to the right, either make an adjustment to your bipod, hold, or simply make sure to move back each shot. Also consider your scope. Running super high magnification can leave the number board out of the scope’s field view. That can really increase the risk of cross-firing.

2. Equipment Failure. There are a wide variety of equipment failures you may encounter at a match, from loose sight fasteners, to broken bipods, to high-round-count barrels that that suddenly “go south” (just to mention a few possibilities). Mechanical components can and do fail. The best policy is to put some thought into what the critical failure points are, monitor wear of these parts, and have spares ready. This is where an ounce of prevention can prevent a ton of train wreck. On this note, if you like running hot loads, consider whether that extra 20 fps is worth blowing up a bullet (10 points), sticking a bolt (DNF), or worse yet, causing injury to yourself or someone nearby.

train wreck Bryan Litz shooting tips ballistics

[Editor’s Note: The 2016 F-Class Nationals will employ electronic targets so conventional pit duties won’t be required. However, the following advice does apply for matches with conventional targets.]

3. Scoring/Pit Malfunction. Although not related to your shooting technique, doing things to insure you get at least fair treatment from your scorer and pit puller is a good idea. Try to meet the others on your target so they can associate a face with the shooter for whom they’re pulling. If you learn your scorer is a Democrat, it’s probably best not to tell Obama jokes before you go for record. If your pit puller is elderly, it may be unwise to shoot very rapidly and risk a shot being missed (by the pit worker), or having to call for a mark. Slowing down a second or two between shots might prevent a 5-minute delay and possibly an undeserved miss.

train wreck Bryan Litz shooting tips ballistics4. Wind Issues. Tricky winds derail many trains. A lot can be written about wind strategies, but here’s a simple tip about how to take the edge off a worse case scenario. You don’t have to start blazing away on the command of “Commence fire”. If the wind is blowing like a bastard when your time starts, just wait! You’re allotted 30 minutes to fire your string in long range slow fire. With average pit service, it might take you 10 minutes if you hustle, less in F-Class. Point being, you have about three times longer than you need. So let everyone else shoot through the storm and look for a window (or windows) of time which are not so adverse. Of course this is a risk, conditions might get worse if you wait. This is where judgment comes in. Just know you have options for managing time and keep an eye on the clock. Saving rounds in a slow fire match is a costly and embarrassing train wreck.

5. Mind Your Physical Health. While traveling for shooting matches, most shooters break their normal patterns of diet, sleep, alcohol consumption, etc. These disruptions to the norm can have detrimental effects on your body and your ability to shoot and even think clearly. If you’re used to an indoor job and eating salads in air-conditioned break rooms and you travel to a week-long rifle match which keeps you on your feet all day in 90-degree heat and high humidity, while eating greasy restaurant food, drinking beer and getting little sleep, then you might as well plan on daily train wrecks. If the match is four hours away, rather than leaving at 3:00 am and drinking five cups of coffee on the morning drive, arrive the night before and get a good night’s sleep.”

Keep focused on the important stuff. You never want to lose sight of the big picture. Keep the important, common sense things in mind as well as the minutia of meplat trimming, weighing powder to the kernel, and cleaning your barrel ’til it’s squeaky clean. Remember, all the little enhancements can’t make up for one big train wreck!

Permalink - Articles, Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Competition No Comments »
February 11th, 2019

2019 Berger Southwest Nationals — This Week in Arizona

The 2019 Berger Southwest Nationals, one of the biggest (and best) rifle competitions of the year, kicks off Wednesday, February 13, 2019 at the Ben Avery Range outside Phoenix, Arizona. The big match continues through Sunday, February 17th. This match attracts the top F-Class and sling shooters in the country, along with many talented foreign competitors.

Talk to the competitors and many will tell your that the SWN is their favorite match of the year. For those in Northern states, the chance to enjoy some Arizona sunshine is a big draw, along with the quality of the competition, and the camaraderie.

berger southwest nationals Berger SWN

The Berger SW Nationals are made possible through the principal support of Berger Bullets and Lapua, both part of the Capstone Precision Group, which also distributes Vihtavuori powder and SK Ammunition in the USA. Berger and Lapua both generously donated product prizes for 2019 SWN competitors.

Berger SW Nationals

Here’s a cool video from the 2016 Berger SW Nationals. This includes drone footage of the range:

Berger SW Nationals 2019

Berger SW Nationals 2019

Berger SW Nationals Southwest Arizona

Event Schedule for 2019 Berger SWN

Wednesday, 13 February 2019, 9:00 AM
Mid-Range Match – Three 20-shot matches at 600 yards. (Divisions – Palma, Any Rifle-Any Sight, F-Open, F-TR)

Thursday, 14 February 2019, 9:00 AM
4-Man Palma Team Match – 15 shots for record at 800, 900, and 1000 yards. (Divisions – Palma, F-Open, F-TR)

Friday, 15 February 2019, 8:30 AM – Start of Grand Agg
Individual Palma Match – 15 shots for record at 800, 900, and 1000 yards. (Divisions – Palma, F-Open, F-TR)
Swap Meet at 1000 Yard Line after conclusion of Day’s Match

Saturday, 16 February 2019, 8:30 AM
Individual 1000 Yard Matches – Two 20-shot matches at 1000 yards. Any Rifle-Iron Sight (Any sight for F-Class shooters). (Divisions – Palma, Any Rifle-Iron Sight, F-Open, F-TR)
4 Man Team Match – 20 shots at 1000 yards. Any Rifle-Iron Sight (Any sight for F-Class shooters). (Divisions – Palma, Any Rifle-Iron Sight, F-Open, F-TR)
Banquet Dinner – Approximately 5:00 pm at Indoor Range.

Sunday, 17 February 2019, 8:30 AM
Individual 1000 Yard Matches – Two 20-shot matches at 1000 yards. Any Rifle-Any Sight (Any sight for F-Class shooters). (Divisions – Palma, Any Rifle-Any Sight, F-Open, F-TR)
Awards Ceremony at the Indoor Range.

Sling Shooters in Palma Division
There will be many Eliseo tubeguns in the hands of the sling shooters. For the Palma division, the cartridge of choice is the .308 Winchester (7.62.x51). This versatile cartridge is still capable of extreme accuracy. Never underestimate a skilled sling shooter with a good Palma rifle.

Berger 2019 SW Nationals SWN

Click image to see full-screen panorama.

CLICK HERE for Phoenix Travel and Lodging Information.


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Packing for the Match — Protecting Precious Cargo

Forum member David Christian will be attending the Berger SW Nationals this week. He has an impressive new F-Open rig and a top-flight SEB rest to bring. David’s Open-class rifle features a beautiful laminated stock, with Borden action and Kahles optic. With rest, and spotting scope, you’re looking at $6K easy, so David has packed his gear very carefully:

Berger 2019 SW Nationals SWN
Berger 2019 SW Nationals SWN
Berger 2019 SW Nationals SWN

Permalink - Videos, Competition, News 1 Comment »
February 11th, 2019

Bargain Finder 177: 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, optics, 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. RCBS 2019 REBATE Program — Get Up to $100 Back

RCBS 2019 Rebate press chargemaster case prep discount rebate sale

RCBS just announced its first Rebate Program for 2019. Get up to $100 back on select RCBS® products. If you need an electronic Scale/Dispenser, Progressive Press, a Case Prep Center, Ultrasonic Machine, or Power Case trimmer you’re in luck. Here are the Rebates available for purchases made between 2/1/2019 and 3/17/2019. NOTE: The DEADLINE for mail-in or online submissions is 4/16/2019.

$50 REBATES: ProChucker 7 (88911) or ProChucker 5 (88910) Progressive Presses

$40 REBATES: Ultrasonic Case Cleaner 2 (87056), Universal Case Prep Ctr (90370), Trim Pro-2 Power Kit ( 90367), or Chargemaster Combo (98923)

$20 REBATES: Ultrasonic Case Cleaner (87055), or Chargemaster Lite (98940)

Credit EdLongRange for this RCBS Rebate Tip.

2. Natchez — Optics Clearance Sale

Optics Clearance Sale

Looking for a new riflescope, spotting scope, binoculars, or tripod? Natchez Shooters Supply is running a pretty compelling optics clearance sale on just about any kind of optic you can imagine, along with accessories. Brands include Leupold, Swarovski, Nikon, Burris and more. If you need a new optic, check out this clearance sale.

3. Bruno Shooters Supply & ArmOrAlly — Nosler Bullet Blowout

Nosler Clearance Sale

Nosler bullets are loved and appreciated from hunters to target shooters alike but finding them on sale isn’t always easy. Bruno Shooters Supply and ArmOrAlly.com are both running some of the best prices we’ve seen on Nosler bullets in a long time. Guaranteed that if you shoot Nosler you’ll find something you can’t live without between these two sites.

4. Sportsman’s Guide — 5-Gun Security Cabinet, $127.49

First Watch 5 gun cabinet

If you already own a full-size gun safe, but need secure storage for a workroom, office, or RV, here’s an affordable option. This 5-Gun Security Cabinet can also serve as a bedroom closet safe, to hold a couple long arms and other valuables. The First Watch 5-Gun Security Cabinet from Sportman’s Guide costs just $127.49 (or $114.79 member price). This can also serve as a secure locker for vacation homes. We’ve even seen people bolt these units to their campers or truck beds while traveling. NOTE: Add another item to get your total up to $150 and you can use promo code SG3480 to get a FREE $50 gift card by mail. This gift card deal runs through 11:59 pm on 2/12/2018.

5. CDNN — Ruger American .22 WMR with Scope, $289.99

Ruger american rimfire .22 WMR 22 WMR rifle with Bushnell

The .22 WMR (Winchester Magnum Rimfire) is an effective cartridge for varmints, with higher velocity and more range than the .22 LR. The barrel is easier to clean than a .17 HMR. If you’ve been looking to add a .22 WMR to your arsenal, here’s a great deal. Now you can pick up this .22 WMR Ruger American for just $289.99. That price even includes a 3.5-10X36mm Bushnell scope, rings, and scope covers. This is a nice little rifle with back-up iron sights and a decent trigger. If you figure the scope and rings are worth $90, you’re effectively getting the rifle for under $200.00. Sweet deal. By itself, without scope, this .22 WMR rifle sells for $320 elsewhere.

6. Walmart — Sportsman 2000 Watt Generator, $149.00

2000w Generator Walmart Sportsman

Have you been watching the news lately and wondered what you would do if bad weather hit your area and you found yourself without power? Do you wish you had a backup generator for the basics but can’t justify spending the money on a full-sized unit? Fear no more as Walmart has the Sportsman 2000W Generator for the amazingly low price of $149.00. It’s quiet, compact and has enough power just to keep the basic running that it’s tough to not grab one just in case you ever have a need. Read the reviews — buyers say this little unit works.

7. Midsouth Shooters Supply — Federal Pistol Ammo Rebate

Federal American Eagle Speed Blazer ammo discount rebate ammunition Vista Outdoor

Need pistol ammo? Want to save money? Then check out the latest promotion from Federal and other Vista Outdoor ammo brands. With this rebate you get $2.00 back for every 50-round box of centerfire ammo you buy, except for 9mm Luger (9x19mm) — that qualifies for a $1.00/box rebate. Now through March 31, 2019, rebates are offered for all these participating brands: Federal, Speer, Blazer, American Eagle, and Independence. You must buy at least 250 rounds (5 boxes) to qualify. Grab any of these pistol ammo brands and then submit the REBATE FORM. NOTE: Qualifying purchases must be made December 3, 2018 through March 31, 2019. The DEADLINE for mail-in or online submissions is April 30, 2019. To redeem online, visit Promotions.vistaoutdoor.com. MORE INFO here.

8. Amazon — Champion Precision Sight-In Target, $11.97

Sight-In Targets

Have you ever been ready to run to the range and blow off a few rounds only to find that you’re out of targets? If you’re like us that’s one of the most frustrating things that can happen when heading to the club and nobody likes using printer paper and a marker to make a target. Pick up this 100 count set of sight-in targets and you won’t have to run to the store last minute or dig through the range trash cans hoping to find a barely-used target. This is a great value — only 12 cents per target! Great deal.

9. Amazon – Proster Wind Meter, $16.99

Proster Wind Meter

Wish you had a modern impeller-style wind meter but only shoot a couple matches a year and can’t justify spending $150 (or more) on one? This Proster wind meter has a very impressive 4.5 star overall rating (with hundreds of reviews), so buy with confidence. Now on sale for just $16.99, this is a very useful tool for a bargain basement price. Get this affordable Wind Meter to ensure you have reliable wind readings for ballistics calculations. And unlike a costly Kestrel, with this low-priced wind meter, you won’t feel too bad if it gets lost or misplaced some time.

Most Weekly Deals Sourced by F-Class John.

Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Hot Deals, Optics 1 Comment »
February 11th, 2019

This May Surprise You — Technique Matters When Case Filling

powder drop tube

The way you drop powder in the case will affect your max powder volume and the load density. Look at the photo above. These photos show the SAME 30.6 grains of powder using four different fill methods. If you are working with a powder that is below max safe pressure at your current “full case” (with room left for the bullet), and you want to get more velocity with that powder, consider a different case-filling technique.

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.

Using funnels with long drop tubes packs kernels more tightly, creating a shorter powder column. That allows you to get more propellant (by weight) into the case.

powder drop tube

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:

(more…)

Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Reloading 6 Comments »
February 10th, 2019

The “Batman” Pistol — Wicked XP-100 in 6-6.5×47 Lapua

Ernie Bishop Specialty Pistol Batman Dasher
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Here is Ernie Bishop’s pride and joy, a specialty pistol nicknamed “Batman” because the black carbon-fiber stock looks like the Batmobile. This is one sophisticated handgun. Complete with scope, the Batman pistol weighs under 7.5 pounds, thanks to the ultra-light stock. The carbon stock is 6 inches wide at the fore-end, yet weighs just one pound. Ernie tells us: “This gun shoots amazing and is easy to shoot especially with my SEB MAX Rest.” Ernie adds, “The gun will soon also have a field-usable rear-grip stock so I can shoot it prone from a bipod as well.”

The Batman pistol is chambered for the 6mm “Long Dasher”, a 6mm 40°-shouldered variant of the 6.5×47 Lapua. Ernie loads Berger 105gr Hybrid bullets pushed by Hodgdon H-4350 powder.

Gun Specifications
6.5x47 Lapua Dasher 40 degree improvedThe gun, crafted by Eric Wallance of Nawaka Firearms, features an XP-100 action, Jewell trigger, and 15″-long, Brux 1:8″-twist barrel with aluminum muzzle brake. Interestingly, this gun does not have a traditional recoil lug. Instead, gunsmith Wallace milled out a lug from the bottom of the XP-100 action to save weight. On top of the action, the rig carries a Sightron Inc S-III 6-24X56mm scope in Kelbly rings on a custom +20 MOA rail.

Long Dasher Wildcat
Shown at right is a “Long Dasher” 40° wildcat created by Forum member Sunbuilder. This is very similar to Ernie Bishop’s chambering, though there may be small variations related to reamer design (such as freebore). Sunbuilder’s 6-6.5×47 Improved (aka “Long Dasher”) reamer was made by Dave Kiff of Pacific, Tool & Gauge. This wildcat cartridge adds about 2.0 grains capacity to the 6.5×47 necked down to 6mm. The case certainly is impressive with that 40° shoulder. We’re just waiting for the tactical guys to starting run this improved cartridge with its original 6.5mm bore.

Here are three FIVE-shot groups at 500 yards, shot by Ernie’s Batman pistol. The first is marked with pink dots, the second with green dots, and the third is being measured with calipers:

Ernie Bishop Specialty Pistol Batman Dasher

Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Gear Review, Handguns 3 Comments »