March 31st, 2019

Frankford Arsenal Intellidropper Powder Scale/Dispenser Review

Frankford Arsenal intelli-dropper intellidropper powder measure scale dispenser test review video

Product Review by F-Class John
The Frankford Arsenal Platinum Series Intellidropper is the latest automated powder scale/dispenser to hit the market. This new-for-2019 machine offers a unique powder calibration mode and the first-ever, mobile APP-controlled powder dispensing system. With a retail price under $200, does the new Intellidropper live up to its promises? We’ll cover the key product features one by one, testing Frankford’s claims:

Feature 1 — Powder Calibration (Custom Profiles)
Feature 2 — Mobile APP Control with Load Database
Feature 3 — 1/10th of a Grain Accuracy

The $200 Intellidropper from Frankford Arsenal looks fairly similar to other electronic scale/dispensers. It has a digital touch-screen, a powder hopper, and a collection pan. But look a little deeper and you can see that it’s a whole lot more. Frankford Arsenal has brought new software technology to the table, with a Bluetooth controller/database APP. What’s more, this new machine has an innovative powder calibration mode, a software “brain” that helps the unit dispense powder with greater speed and precision.

As a technophile I find few things more annoying than technology developed or implemented for the wrong reasons or in the wrong way, so I was pretty apprehensive when I saw this was a ‘smart’ powder measure. I would soon be proved wrong. Unboxing was as easy as pulling out the unit, power cord, powder hopper, and a couple accessories. I simply plugged it in, leveled it on my work surface, allowed it to warm up, then calibrated it using the easy-to-use instructions. Once I was done with calibration, I could immediately begin dropping powder. It was then time to test Frankford’s claims about this new machine.

Frankford Arsenal intelli-dropper intellidropper powder measure scale dispenser test review video

Powder Calibration
First came the powder calibration mode. Zero the tray, click the “Powder Cal” button and the machine instantly begins to dispense your powder at various rates. As it does this the machine’s “brain” records its ability to flow/dispense the powder most efficiently. In just a few minutes the unit knew the fastest and most consistent way to drop that particular powder. The beauty of this system is that it’s so fast and easy to use that I can picture myself using this anytime I change powder without giving it a second thought. As easy as the calibration was, I was left wondering if it really made a difference. A test of calibrated versus non-calibrated throws showed an average of 22 seconds for calibrated throws vs. nearly 40 seconds non-calibrated. This demonstrated a major improvement with Frankford’s powder calibration system. Once I was done with the powder calibration it came time to add the APP.

Intellidropper Controller APP — How It Works
Frankford offers Intellidropper APPs for both iOS (Apple) and Android phones. A quick search in the iOS and Android APP stores turned up the free Intellidropper APPs. Once downloaded and installed, the APP activated easily and then automatically connected to my Intellidropper unit. Simply ensure your Bluetooth is turned on and that’s it. There was no pairing or manual connections necessary, just open the APP, count to three and now you can control your unit from your phone or tablet. I was expecting this to be a novelty that did nothing more than let me replace the touchpad on the unit but there’s a lot more to it than that.

Touch the menu button at the bottom and now you can enter as many loads as you want including caliber, bullet, powder, powder charge, OAL, firearm, primer and brass used. This allows you to create a database of all your favorite cartridge types, bullets, and powders. For example you could have 10 different .308 Win loads, all with different bullets and/or powders. Or you could have 10 different cartridge types with many different loads for each. The software remembers the powder type and charge weight. Loads from the database can be instantly sent to the unit, which will then rapidly dispense the exact charge weight the APP commands. I found this system provides just enough options to work efficiently without cluttering it up with needless functions. It really is the right balance of style and substance that made this a joy to use and kept me wanting to play with it more. Frankford Arsenal’s tech team told us that Frankford is committed to keeping the firmware, software, and APP updated over time. This should ensure that you can use this unit for many years to come.

WARNING: The Intellidropper is smart but it does NOT know what powder the human user has poured into the hopper! You obviously need to confirm you have the correct powder in the hopper before you send a command from the APP!

Powder Weighing Precision — The Tenth of a Grain Standard
Like the RCBS ChargeMaster, the Intellidropper is really two machines in one — a powder dispenser AND a SCALE that weighs the dispensed powder. Even with its cool APP and fast dispensing speed, to be a winner, the Intellidropper must be able to WEIGH CHARGES accurately and repeatedly. Frankford Arsenal claims this machine can weigh charges with ± 1/10th of a grain accuracy. With that in mind, I put it to the test. After giving the unit the recommended 15-minute warm-up, I ran twenty H4350 loads with a target weight of 50.8 grains. The machine was fast — the average drop time was just 22 seconds.

Frankford Arsenal intelli-dropper intellidropper powder measure scale dispenser test review video

How did the Intellidropper do? After each of the twenty loads was dispensed, I then double-checked the actual charge weight, using a $600+ lab-quality scale. As confirmed with the lab scale, every one of the 20 Intellidropper-thrown charges was within the stated variance, i.e. plus or minus one-tenth of a grain. Not only that but I found the average drop time to be only 22 seconds with H4530. It may vary with other types of powders, but I expect that drop time to stay fairly consistent when calibrated correctly.

CONCLUSION: Intellidropper is Fast, Accurate, and Software Works Well
The Frankford Arsenal Intellidropper is an impressive, affordable Scale/Dispenser that throws charges accurately and consistently. It has a very handy software APP and more practical features than anything else out there. In the world of sub-$300 powder measures, this $200 machine seems to have hit a home run — this machine demands your serious attention. I try to review products strictly based on the manufacturers’ claims and how they deliver on them. In the case of the Frankford Arsenal Intellidropper, it delivers on those promises. Of course, the $200 Intellidropper won’t replace a Prometheus — it is not for handloaders who demand to measure each charge down to the kernel. But the Intellidropper certainly doesn’t claim single-kernel accuracy, and it costs a fraction of the Prometheus.

Want More Info? This UltimateReloader.com Video reviews the Intellidropper’s key features:

Permalink - Videos, Bullets, Brass, Ammo, New Product, Reloading 1 Comment »
March 31st, 2019

Pioneers of Precision Shooting — Legendary L.E. “Sam” Wilson

lewilson15001
Sam (L.E.) Wilson actively competed in benchrest matches until he passed. He’s shown here with an Unlimited benchrest rifle of his own design.

If you’ve used hand dies with an arbor press, chances are you’ve seen the L.E. Wilson company name. You may not know that the founder of L.E. Wilson Inc. was an avid benchrest competitor who pioneered many of the precision reloading methods we used today. Known as “Sam” to his friends, L.E. Wilson was one of the great accuracy pioneers who collected many trophies for match victories during his long shooting career.

lewilson1503

The photo above shows Sam (foreground) with all of his children at a shoot. Behind Sam are Jim, Jack and Mary, shooting in the Unlimited Class. What do they say — “the family that plays together stays together”? Note the long, externally-adjusted scopes being used. Learn more about Sam (L.E.) Wilson and his company on the L.E. Wilson Inc. Facebook Page.

lewilson1504

Unlimited Class was Sam’s favorite discipline, because in the “good old days” top competitors normally would craft both the rifle and the front/rear rests. This rewarded Sam’s ingenuity and machining/fabrication skills. In the “build-it-yourself” era, one couldn’t just order up an unlimited rail gun on the internet. How times have changed…

Permalink - Articles, Reloading 3 Comments »
March 31st, 2019

Video Takes You Inside Accuracy International Arms Factory

accuracy international suv AT

accuracy international suv ATWho wouldn’t like a look inside the Accuracy International (AI) factory in England? Thanks to The Telegraph, a British media outlet, you can do just that. The Telegraph got its cameras inside AI’s production facility “at a discreet location on the outskirts of Portsmouth”.

Accuracy International has introduced a number of new models in the past couple of years, including the modular, multi-caliber AXMC Rifle System, and the ATAICS Chassis for the Remington M700. Like the AI PSR system, the AXMC can be user-configured to shoot three different calibers: .308/7.62 NATO, .300 Winchester Magnum and .338 Lapua Magnum.

Watch the video below. NOTE — because this video is hosted in the UK, it may take a while to load while the digital packets swim across the Atlantic ocean.

The AXMC is AI’s multi-caliber sniper rifle. Versatility is the name of the game…
accuracy international suv AT

This Accuracy International AT (on gimbaled mount) is not your average SUV Accessory.
accuracy international suv AT

Permalink - Videos, Tactical 2 Comments »
March 30th, 2019

New Protektor Model Aluminum Front Rest — Made in USA

Protektor Protector read sand bag front aluminum rest bag benchrest windage top

You probably know the name Protektor Model for quality front and rear bags. The Protektor DR rear bag is extremely stable, making it the choice of many top Benchrest and F-Class shooters. But guess what — Protektor makes more than leather products now.

Protektor recently introduced a slingshot-style aluminum front rest, and it looks impressive. It is offered with standard top for $195.00. The deluxe version with Windage-adjustable top costs $295.00. Both versions have an adjustable fore-end stop and nice big Mariners Wheel for elevation control. The deluxe windage-top version, shown below, also comes with a bubble level.

Protektor Protector read sand bag front aluminum rest bag benchrest windage top

The Windage-adjustable version is shown above (as well as in top photo). The left-right Windage is controlled with a simple knob that spins a shaft on the left side of the top. Height adjusts from 4-7/8″ to 7″ via the nicely-crafted Mariners Wheel. NOTE: The black triangular base is a third-part item, NOT part of the rest. Also the $295.00 price does NOT include front bag, which is sold separately. A deluxe Protektor square-ear front bag for 3″ forearms costs $43.00.

Basic Protektor Aluminum Rest is $195.00
Shown below is the basic Protektor rest, a good value at just $195.00 (rest only — no bag). This includes a machined aluminum top, large Mariners Wheel, and adjustable feet. This has a 7.75″ x 14″ footprint and weighs 5.65 lbs without sand-bag. That makes it pretty easy to carry around — a plus for varminters. The rest top fits standard-sized Protektor bags, which, as filled, take the total weight to about seven pounds.

Protektor Protector read sand bag front aluminum rest bag benchrest windage top

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March 30th, 2019

F-Open Thumbhole Stock Crafted by Carl Bernosky

F-Class F-Open Rifle stock

Many F-Open shooters favor low-profile benchrest-type stocks. They shoot these with minimal hand and cheek contact. Not “free recoil” mind you, but pretty close. With practice and a high-quality front rest and rear bag, that “minimal hold” style can work very well.

F-Class F-Open Rifle stock
Modern F-Open Rifle designed for “minimalist” grip/hold. Note the complete abscence of cheekpiece.

However, other successful F-Open and F-TR shooters prefer to hold their rifles, with a firm grip and solid cheek weld. If you come from a “hard-holding” Palma rifle background this may seem more natural. In addition, this shooting style may work best for folks who also shoot PRS or tactical matches using a vertical pistol grip and solid hold.

Carl Bernosky Thumbhole Laminate F-Class Barnard Rifle Stock long range adjustable cheekpieceFor guys who want to shoot their F-Open rig as they do their prone, tactical or hunting rifles, here is a modern F-Open stock designed for this kind of shooting. And this stock was crafted by a fellow with a pretty good shooting resume — Carl Bernosky.

Most of you know as a great marksman and 10-time National High Power Champion. But you may not realize that Carl is also a superb stock-maker. A true craftsman, Carl produces outstanding laminated and fancy wood stocks for hunters and competitive shooters. Visit CarlBernosky.com to see a selection of Carl’s competition and hunting stocks.

Her is Carl’s thumbhole F-Class stock. Designed for F-Open shooters, this stock features a flat, 3″-wide fore-end, ergonomic grip, and adjustable cheekpiece. The laminated Bernosky stock featured here was crafted for Chesebro Rifles, which offers a turn-key stock package for the Barnard ‘P’ action, one of our favorite custom actions. This particular build features a MT Guns Vee Block Bedding System, MT Guns 3-Way Adjustable Butt Plate, and B&D Precision removable cheek piece.

Click Photo to view full-size image of stock.
Carl Bernosky Thumbhole Laminate F-Class Barnard Rifle Stock long range adjustable cheekpiece
Carl Bernosky Thumbhole Laminate F-Class Barnard Rifle Stock long range adjustable cheekpiece

As you see it, complete with all hardware (including short fore-end rail for bipod) this stock runs $1275.00 ready to ship. Just attach your Barnard barreled action and you’re ready to compete. The stock (by itself) weighs 6.5 pounds. Contact Chesebro Rifles, (661) 557-2442, for more information.

Cheek-piece close-up shows high-quality adjustment hardware.
Carl Bernosky Thumbhole Laminate F-Class Barnard Rifle Stock long range adjustable cheekpiece

Cheek-piece is relieved to allow full bolt travel.
Carl Bernosky Thumbhole Laminate F-Class Barnard Rifle Stock long range adjustable cheekpiece

Short accessory rail on the underside of the fore-end can be used to mount bipod.
Carl Bernosky Thumbhole Laminate F-Class Barnard Rifle Stock long range adjustable cheekpiece

Stock tip from EdLongrange. We welcome reader submissions.
Permalink Competition, Gear Review, Gunsmithing 2 Comments »
March 30th, 2019

6-6.5×47 vs. Milk Jug at 1000 Yards in Crazy Winds

This website focuses on rifle accuracy and precision — normally indicated by small groups and high scores. But sometimes reactive targets are fun too — particularly when you can hit them at very long range. Here’s a video of a 6-6.5×47 Lapua hitting a milk jug at 1000 yards. This video was filmed during the Long Range Shooters of Utah 1000-Yard Milk Jug Challenge a while back. A remote camera shows a 95gr Sierra MatchKing penetrating a filled jug. The jug was hit with the fifth shot — you can see the fluid leaking out at 0:57. NOTE: Because the remote camera is positioned well off to the side, the jug-penetrating shot appears to impact low and slightly right (as seen in the inset close-up frame). The jug is actually suspended in front of the white square, and that’s where the fifth shot went, right through the bottom section of the jug.

Congrats to Mr. Clint Bryant of Green River, Wyoming for hitting the jug in challenging conditions. Clint had to dial 11 minutes of windage to compensate for a strong cross-wind (see 2:30 time-mark). Clint’s 6-6.5×47 cartridge is a variant of the 6.5×47 Lapua cartridge, necked down to 6mm. This 6-6.5×47 case drives the 95gr SMKs at 3100 FPS, making for a very effective (and accurate) coyote cartridge. Rick’s rifle was a Savage Model 12, with 30″ barrel, in an aftermarket stock, topped by a Leupold scope.

Here is the parent case, the 6.5×47 Lapua:

6.5x47 Lapua

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March 29th, 2019

Inspect Your Fired Brass to Avoid Catastrophic Case Failures

Glen Zediker reloaders corner midsouth book AR-16 reloading semi-auto brass safety primer resizing
Close-up view of a sectioned case. This one here was “fixin’ to pop”, says Glen Zediker.

Here are highlights from an article Glen Zediker wrote for the Midsouth Blog. In this article Glen focuses on cartridge brass. Glen discusses the most common failures that appear with brass that has been shot multiple times, or which has been fired at excessive pressures. Glen explains some simple ways to check your cartridge brass to detect “early warning signs” of case failure, particularly case head separation, which can be dangerous.

Glen is the author of many excellent books on reloading. This article is adapted from Glen’s books, Handloading For Competition and Top-Grade Ammo, available at Midsouth HERE. For more information about other books by Glen, visit ZedikerPublishing.com.

Handloading for Competition
by Glen Zediker

The Competitive AR-15
by Glen Zediker

Top-Grade Ammo
by Glen Zediker

How Cases Degrade with Multiple Firings By Glen Zediker
This article explains when, and then how, to check after the progress of changes commencing with the firing on a new case. It’s the “progress of degeneration,” in a way of looking at it because the concern is getting a handle on when enough change in the brass has come about to require attention. Or abandonment. As said then, for me that’s 4 firings. That, as said last time, is when I might see changes that need attention. Also as said, that figure didn’t come out of a hat, but from my own notes in running my competition NRA High Power Rifle loads. [Editor’s Note: With Lapua brass, using moderate loads, in bolt-action rifles, we typically get about 10 good (match-worthy) firings. But if you anneal your Lapua brass, and run modest pressures, Lapua brass can perform well for 20 or more load cycles.]

The areas most affected are the case neck and case head area. Case neck walls get thicker [but] the case head area body walls get thinner. Primer pockets get shallower and larger diameter.

Glen Zediker reloaders corner midsouth book AR-16 reloading semi-auto brass safety primer resizing

This case shows a cracked neck AND a crack (separation) above the case head. Zediker says it is “rare to see one case with both of the most common failures. [This case] was attacked by an M14.”

Case Head — Causes of Separation and Cracking
When a case is under pressure during firing, the brass, like water, flows where it can, where it’s more free to move. Of course, the chamber steel limits the amount it can expand. The case shoulder blows fully forward and the case base is slammed back against the bolt face. There is, therefore and in effect, a tug on both ends — it gets stretched. The shoulder area is relatively free to expand to conform to the chamber, but the other end, the case head area, is not. Since that’s the area of the case with the thickest walls, it doesn’t expand “out” much at all. What it does is stretch. The “case head area,” as I refer to it here, is the portion of the case above the web, which is just above the taper that leads in to the extractor groove. The “area” extends approximately an eighth-inch up the case body.

Glen Zediker reloaders corner midsouth book AR-16 reloading semi-auto brass safety primer resizing

Here’s a “pressure ring.” You’ll see this after firing, if you see it. And, if you see it, that case is done. The bright ring indicates excessive stretching, which indicates excessive thinning. If you see a ring circling the case, noticeable because it’s lighter color than the case body, and it’s in this area, I’d say that case is done. And that’s right where a “head separation” occurs. It can crack and also blow slap in two, and that’s the “separation” part of case head separation.

Case-head case cartridge pressure ring separation head failure GS Arizona
Photo courtesy GS Arizona.

This is a spot to keep close watch on as cases age. It is also the area that is more “protected” by sizing with less case shoulder set-back. That is, pretty much, where the freedom for the stretching movement in this area comes from (the case shoulder creates a gap). If you’re seeing a sign that a head separation [might happen with relatively few firings], chances are the shoulder set-back is excessive, and also… the load pressure level.

Bent Paper Clip Case-Wall Gauge
Case-Head Separation paper clip Glen Zediker GS Arizona

Editor: You can use a bent paper clip to detect potential case wall problems. Slide the paper clip inside your case to check for thin spots. GS Arizona explains: “This simple little tool (bent paper clip) will let you check the inside of cases before you reload them. The thin spot will be immediately apparent as you run the clip up the inside of the case. If you’re seeing a shiny line on the outside and the clip is really hitting a thin spot inside, it’s time to retire the case.” Photo by GS Arizona.

Monitor Primer Pocket Dimensional Changes
Another case-head-area and pressure-related check is the primer pocket. As said, the primer pocket will get larger in diameter and shallower in depth each firing. As with many such things, the questions are “when” and “how much,” and the main thing, “how much?”

If the pocket gets excessively shallow, and that’s judged by a primer that seats fully but isn’t at least a tick below flush with the case base, there could be function issues. There’s a risk of a “slam-fire” with a semi-auto that uses a floating firing pin, and, if there is actual protrusion, that has the same effect as insufficient headspace. A primer pocket uniformer can reset the depth of a shallowed primer pocket to what it should be, but the real test for me is how easily the next primer seats into it. If it’s significantly less resistance, I’ll say that case is done. Shallower can be refurbished. That’s a primary function of a primer pocket uniformer. Larger diameter, though, can’t be fixed. I’ve mentioned in another article or two that, any more at least, my main gauge of load pressure has become how much primer pocket expansion there’s been.

AR15 Glen Zediker Practical AR-15 book newGlen’s books, Handloading For Competition and Top-Grade Ammo, are available at Midsouth HERE. For more information about other books by Glen, visit ZedikerPublishing.com

Glen’s newest book, America’s Gun: The Practical AR15. Check it out HERE!

Permalink - Articles, Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Reloading, Tech Tip No Comments »
March 29th, 2019

People Pleasing Pistols — Best-Selling Handguns of 2019

Best selling gun genius firearms pistol Sig P320 gunbroker

Looking to acquire a handgun for personal protection of home and family? There are countless options on the market. Your buying decision may be simplified by seeing what other consumers have chosen, as revealed by nationwide sales trends. You can now check firearms sales figures using “Gun Genius”, a new data-crunching service of Gunbroker.com. On GunGenius.com you can select any type of firearm (handgun, rifle, shotgun)* and see the top sellers for that category.

Here are the five (5) top-selling NEW semi-auto handguns for Q1 2019:

Best selling gun genius firearms pistol Sig P320 gunbroker

And here are the five (5) top-selling USED semi-auto handguns for Q1 2019:

Best selling gun genius firearms pistol Sig P320 gunbroker

*Chose semi-auto pistols, revolvers, semi-auto rifles, bolt-action rifles, lever-action rifles, single-shot rifles, semi-auto shotguns, pump shotguns, and more. You can also filter for sales trends (upwards and downwards). Drill down to see detailed product specifications and current prices.

Permalink Handguns, Hot Deals, News No Comments »
March 29th, 2019

Breath Better… To See Better (and Shoot Higher Scores)

Vision Eye Target Scope Relaxation Oxygen Target

Do you find that the crosshairs in your scope get blurry after a while, or that you experience eye strain during a match? This is normal, particularly as you get older. Focusing intensely on your target (through the scope or over iron sights) for an extended period of time can cause eye strain. Thankfully, there are things you can do to reduce eye fatigue. For one — breathe deeper to take in more oxygen. Secondly, give your eyes a break between shots, looking away from the scope or sights.

In our Forum there is an interesting thread about vision and eye fatigue. One Forum member observed: “I have noticed recently that if I linger on the target for too long the crosshairs begin to blur and the whole image gradually darkens as if a cloud passed over the sun. I do wear contacts and wonder if that’s the problem. Anyone else experienced this? — Tommy”

Forum members advised Tommy to relax and breath deep. Increase oxygen intake and also move the eyes off the target for a bit. Closing the eyes briefly between shots can also relieve eye strain. Tommy found this improved the situation.

Keith G. noted: “Make sure you are still breathing… [your condition] sounds similar to the symptoms of holding one’s breath.”

Phil H. explained: “Tom — Our eyes are tremendous oxygen hogs. What you are witnessing is caused by lack of oxygen. When this happens, get off the sights, stare at the grass (most people’s eyes find the color green relaxing), breath, then get back on the rifle. Working on your cardio can help immensely. Worked for me when I shot Palma. Those aperture sights were a bear! The better my cardio got the better and longer I could see. Same thing with scopes. Try it!”

Watercam concurred: “+1 on breathing. Take a long slow deep breath, exhale and break shot. Also make sure you take a moment to look at the horizon without looking through rifle or spotting scope once in a while to fight fatigue. Same thing happens when using iron sights.”

Arizona shooter Scott Harris offered this advice: “To some extent, [blurring vision] happens to anyone staring at something for a long time. I try to keep vision crisp by getting the shot off in a timely fashion or close the eyes briefly to refresh them. Also keep moisturized and protect against wind with wrap-around glasses”.

Breathing Better and Relaxing the Eyes Really Worked…
Tommy, the shooter with the eye problem, said his vision improved after he worked on his breathing and gave his eyes a rest between shots: “Thanks guys. These techniques shrunk my group just a bit and every little bit helps.”

Read more tips on reducing eye fatigue in our Forum Thread: That Vision Thing.

To avoid eye fatigue, take your eyes away from the scope between shots, and look at something nearby (or even close your eyes briefly). Also work on your breathing and don’t hold your breath too long — that robs your system of oxygen.

eye vision Vince Bottomley

Permalink Shooting Skills, Tech Tip 2 Comments »
March 28th, 2019

Definitive Resource — Blue Book of Gun Values, 40th Edition

Blue Book of gun values

The milestone 40th Edition of the Blue Book of Gun Values is releasing April 1, 2019. Purchase this popular price guide through Blue Book Publications for $49.95. Or save $7.58 by ordering from Amazon for $42.37. The Blue Book of Gun Values by S.P. Fjestad is the leading gun valuation resource. There are now over 1.8 million copies in circulation worldwide. This book continues to be the “Bible” for buyers, sellers, collectors, and connoisseurs in the firearms industry. NOTE: For the first time in decades the value of many collectible firearms have gone down significantly — the new 40th Edition carefully tracks this recent trend.

Blue Book of Gun Values, 40th Edition, April 2019

The 40th Edition contains new-for-2019 firearms makes and models, with important pricing updates on many current and discontinued models.

2,512 pages are included on nearly 1,700 manufacturers/trademarks, with almost 23,000 gun model descriptions, and over 500,000 values!

Review by Tom Gresham, Gun Talk Radio Host
“At some point, every gun owner asks the question, ‘What’s it worth?’ The leading reference for decades has been the Blue Book of Gun Values. Whether you are a seller, a buyer, a shopper, or just curious, this constantly-updated gold mine of research is your friend.”

Online Subscription Options
You can also access all the latest Blue Book gun pricing info via an Online Subscription. You can purchase a One-year subscription for $34.95, or you can get a monthly subscription, billed $3.95 per month recurring. For general subscription information, visit the Blue Blue Online Subscription Page.

Features of the new Blue Book of Gun Values:
· 2019 makes and models are included, with many new handguns and rifles.
· 2,512 Pages covering nearly 1,700 manufacturers and trademarks, with almost 23,000 gun model descriptions.
· 500,000+ up-to-date values are provided. No other book has more.
· Important pricing updates on major trademark current, antique, and discontinued models, including Colt, Winchester, Smith & Wesson, and Ruger.
· An 80-page color Photo Percentage Grading System (PPGS) which makes firearms grading even easier and more accurate.
· More information, more values, more illustrations, and more history than any other gun price guide on the market.

Sample Page from Blue Book of Gun Values:

Blue Book of gun values

Book tip from EdLongrange. We welcome reader submissions.
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March 28th, 2019

Camo Wamo — Great Deals on Camo Gear for Hunters and Hikers

Camo camouflage hunting hiking bdu DPM UBAC combat italian britain NATO clothing pants jacket
These British Army shirts feature moisture-wicking mesh plus padded shoulders, elbows, and forearms.

Are you planning some serious hunts this year? Good camouflage clothing can help with your stalking. Or maybe you just need some good, durable togs for hiking and camping. This week high-quality military surplus camo gear is on sale at Sportsman’s Guide. Choose a comfortable British military zip-front shirt, or get an Italian military jacket and pants set. Two British Shirts (shown above) are available — the Desert DPM Shirt for $18.99 ($17.09 SG Club Price) and the UBAC Combat Shirt for $20.09 ($18.09 Club).

Camo camouflage hunting hiking bdu DPM UBAC combat italian britain NATO clothing pants jacket

The Ripstop BDU Jacket is $12.99 ($11.09 Club) while the Ripstop BDU Pants are $13.99 ($12.59 Club).

With these great deals, you can put together a complete, durable camo outfit for under fifty bucks. All these items (both British and Italian) are NEW, NEVER ISSUED condition. We like these BDU pants for general “rough-duty” wear, such as doing yardwork, trail-hiking, or orienteering. And the UBAC shirt is great for cool-weather camping trips.

Permalink Gear Review, Hunting/Varminting No Comments »
March 27th, 2019

Red Hot Savage Stealth — Putting the Bling in Tactical

Savage 10 BA Stealth Red black custom 6.5 Creedmoor

On the 6.5 Creedmoor Facebook page we found an eye-catching Savage Model 10 BA Stealth. Rifle owner Derek P. has done some important upgrades, starting with a wicked, spiral-fluted McGowen barrel with red-painted flutes. The red theme was carried over to the chassis which combines fire-engine red with matte black in the middle. The scope rings and even the magazine were painted red to match as well. The whole effect is very striking, as you can see.

Savage 10 BA Stealth Red black custom 6.5 Creedmoor

The barrel is a 29-inch 1:8″-twist McGowen. The optic is a 4.5-27x56mm Vortex Razor HD GenII with sunshade. That supper-stable rear sandbag is a Protektor DR Bag, one of our favorites. The front sandbag is also a Protektor. The front Rest is the new Protektor Aluminum Rest with Mariners Wheel. Look carefully and you’ll see a flat 2.5″-wide block on the underside of the forearm. That improves stability and tracking.

Savage 10 BA Stealth Red black custom 6.5 Creedmoor

What we really like is the upgraded rear buttstock section. This is NOT standard by any means. Rifle owner Derek has fitted an aftermarket XLR Tactical Lite Buttstock thats sits properly in that Protektor DR rear bag. This unit combines an adjustable buttpad with a nice cheekrest (with upgraded pad from Tactical Works). And, very importantly, the XLR can be fitted with a “tactical bag rider” or you can easily make your own bag rider.

Savage 10 BA Stealth Red black custom 6.5 Creedmoor

As the Savage 10 BA Stealth Comes from the Factory
This video shows a box-stock Savage 10BA Stealth. Note how different the stock buttstock/cheekpiece assembly is compared to Derek’s Red Hot Savage.

Savage 10 BA Stealth Red black custom 6.5 Creedmoor

Permalink Gear Review, Gunsmithing, Tactical No Comments »
March 27th, 2019

USAMU Tips for Using a Progressive Reloading Press

Accurateshooter.com USAMU progressive press reloading

Each Wednesday, the U.S. Army Marksmanship Unit (USAMU) publishes a reloading “how-to” article on the USAMU Facebook page. In this article, the USAMU’s reloading gurus help you avoid potentially disastrous mistakes with a progressive — such as double powder changes. The USAMU experts caution that: “beginners would be better served by starting on a single-stage press”. That said, owning a progressive makes sense if you shoot more than 100 centerfire rounds a week. If you own a progressive press, or are thinking of buying one, you should read this article.

USAMU Reloading

For those interested in progressives, we’ll examine different key features among the types and relate them to handloading processes. The first, and simplest, type is the manually-advanced progressive. The shellplate holds the several cartridges being processed with each stroke of the handle. On these presses, the loader must manually advance the shellplate after each handle stroke.

While this obviously slows production vs. a press that cycles the shellplate automatically, this feature does have advantages though. (The disadvantages follow shortly.) No case is advanced to the next station until the operator deliberately does so – which is especially helpful for the new handloader.

Problems that arise during loading can be diagnosed and fixed without fears of some “extra” operation happening unnoticed with cartridges at the other stations. Beginners NOTE: one way to positively prevent this risk is to remove the cases from each press station when a problem emerges, before beginning diagnosis. Usually, however, experienced loaders omit this step as a time-saving measure, being confident in their understanding of the loading machine, process and the appropriate remedy.

Progressive press reloading ultimate reloader USAMU

If all cartridge cases are left in place, the operator must monitor what’s happening at each station. For example, raising the press ram twice may result in a double-charge of powder. With rifle cartridges, this usually results in a massive powder over-flow, alerting the loader to the problem. With pistol cases or small rifle charges in large cases, such an over-flow isn’t guaranteed. [Editor — one way to be sure you don’t have an overcharge or undercharge is to use a Lock-Out Die — see below.] The manually-advanced progressive keeps all operations under the loader’s control at all times. This is intuitively easier for the beginning loader to understand and to operate with confidence.

However, this same characteristic can be problematic if the loader isn’t paying 100% attention to what they are doing during routine operation. Some new handloaders apparently aspire to load progressively while daydreaming and paying little attention to the operation. Their plan is to feed components in, like feeding potato chips to a monkey, while good ammo drops out at the other end. Unfortunately, such an approach may likely result in something other than “good” ammo dropping out at the end…

Forgetting to cycle the shellplate when appropriate will cause problems. As with all handloading, distractions MUST be kept to a minimum for safety purposes. Never watch TV, talk with friends, or have other distractions (such as a rambunctious pet or child) in the room when loading. Avoiding distractions will do much to ensure that one produces consistent, high-quality ammunition, free of defects. For example, when a case doesn’t line up correctly with the case mouth expander or powder drop tube, a difference in “feel” often alerts the loader to correct the problem without ruining a case. If one is interrupted or becomes distracted, be certain to examine ALL cases in the shellplate before resuming loading.

Better Safe Than Sorry — the RCBS Lock-Out Die
RCBS Makes a “Lock-Out Die” that senses the powder charge. This will halt the Progressive press if you have a double charge, or an undercharge. Your Editor has the Lock-Out Die on his RCBS Pro 2000. It has “saved his bacon” a half-dozen times over the years. It can be used on Dillon and Hornady progressives as well as RCBS machines.

Other advantages of the typical manually-advanced progressives are that they are usually simpler in design, with fewer moving parts to get out of adjustment. This appeals to the mechanically dis-inclined! Caliber conversion kits are usually cheaper and take less time to install. This especially benefits the enthusiast who reloads for a wide variety of calibers.

However, many popular manually-advanced progressives have fewer die stations than the higher-end, auto-advancing machines. One item that is very useful when actually dispensing powder on a progressive press is a cartridge case powder-level sensor. This warns if powder levels in each case are too high or too low; however, it does require a die station of its own.

This condition (incorrect powder charges) often results from powder (especially extruded rifle powder) “bridging” in the powder measure. That is, one charge doesn’t fully empty into its cartridge case. This leaves some extra powder hanging up in the measure to join the normal charge in the next case. With some extruded powders, this can be quite obvious without a sensor. However, the sensor can detect small variations that would not be obvious to even an experienced, attentive operator. Considering the machine’s potential to use a powder sensor in addition to one’s other customary dies is a wise idea.

Similarly, pistol shooters are best served to seat bullets and crimp cartridges in separate operations. This should be taken into account when selecting a progressive press. Whenever loading fully-progressively, choosing powders that dispense very easily, e.g., ball/spherical or very fine-grain extruded powders, can help keep charges quite uniform.

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March 27th, 2019

Accuracy vs. Precision — Litz Explains the Difference

Applied Ballistics Rounds on Target DVD accurateshooter.com

The NSSF has posted a video featuring Bryan Litz of Applied Ballistics. Bryan also serves as Chief Ballistician for Berger Bullets and ABM Ammo. In this short video, Bryan explains the importance of ballistics for precision shooting at long range. Bryan covers key elements — drop, wind drift, angle correction and more. And Bryan also explains the key difference between Accuracy and Precision.

The principles Bryan discusses are covered (in greater detail) in the Putting Rounds on Target instructional DVD set. This 3-Disc collection boasts a total run-time of 3 hours and 37 minutes. The three DVDs, with many graphics and video segments, deliver as much information as a weekend shooting seminar… at a fraction of the cost. The 3-DVD set sells for $44.95.

Applied Ballistics Rounds on Target DVD accurateshooter.com

Disc 1

• Accuracy & Precision
• Tall Target Test
• Chronographs & Statistics
• Ballistic Coefficient
• Trajectory Terms
• Run Time: 1 hour, 4 min

Disc 2

• Primary Elevation (Wind)
• Secondary Effects
• Using Ballistics Solvers
• Short & LR Equipment
• Run Time: 1 hour, 11 min

Disc 3

• On The Range: .308 Win
• On The Range: .284 Win
• On The Range: .338 LM
• Extended Range Shooting
• One Mile Shooting
• Run Time: 1 hour, 22 min

DVD Applied Ballistics Bryan Litz Shooting F-Class .284 Win .338 LM

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March 26th, 2019

Angular Measurement — Mil vs. MOA — What You Need to Know

Mil MOA reticle ranging PRS tactical minute angle precision rifle series
Visit PrecisionRifleBlog.com for a discussion of MIL vs. MOA.

Many guys getting started in long range shooting are confused about what kind of scope they should buy — specifically whether it should have MIL-based clicks or MOA-based clicks. Before you can make that decision, you need to understand the terminology. This article, with a video by Bryan Litz, explains MILS and MOA so you can choose the right type of scope for your intended application.

This March-FX 5-40x56mm Tactical FFP scope features 0.05 MIL Clicks.
Mil MOA reticle ranging PRS tactical minute angle precision rifle series

You probably know that MOA stands for “Minute of Angle” (or more precisely “minute of arc”), but could you define the terms “Milrad” or “MIL”? In his latest video, Bryan Litz of Applied Ballitics explains MOA and MILs (short for “milliradians”). Bryan defines those terms and explains how they are used. One MOA is an angular measurement (1/60th of one degree) that subtends 1.047″ at 100 yards. One MIL (i.e. one milliradian) subtends 1/10th meter at 100 meters; that means that 0.1 Mil is one centimeter (1 cm) at 100 meters. Is one angular measurement system better than another? Not necessarily… Bryan explains that Mildot scopes may be handy for ranging, but scopes with MOA-based clicks work just fine for precision work at known distances. Also because one MOA is almost exactly one inch at 100 yards, the MOA system is convenient for expressing a rifle’s accuracy. By common parlance, a “half-MOA” rifle can shoot groups that are 1/2-inch (or smaller) at 100 yards.

What is a “Minute” of Angle?
When talking about angular degrees, a “minute” is simply 1/60th. So a “Minute of Angle” is simply 1/60th of one degree of a central angle, measured either up and down (for elevation) or side to side (for windage). At 100 yards, 1 MOA equals 1.047″ on the target. This is often rounded to one inch for simplicity. Say, for example, you click up 1 MOA (four clicks on a 1/4-MOA scope). That is roughly 1 inch at 100 yards, or roughly 4 inches at 400 yards, since the target area measured by an MOA subtension increases with the distance.

one MOA minute of angle diagram

MIL vs. MOA for Target Ranging
MIL or MOA — which angular measuring system is better for target ranging (and hold-offs)? In a recent article on his PrecisionRifleBlog.com website, Cal Zant tackles that question. Analyzing the pros and cons of each, Zant concludes that both systems work well, provided you have compatible click values on your scope. Zant does note that a 1/4 MOA division is “slightly more precise” than 1/10th mil, but that’s really not a big deal: “Technically, 1/4 MOA clicks provide a little finer adjustments than 1/10 MIL. This difference is very slight… it only equates to 0.1″ difference in adjustments at 100 yards or 1″ at 1,000 yards[.]” Zant adds that, in practical terms, both 1/4-MOA clicks and 1/10th-MIL clicks work well in the field: “Most shooters agree that 1/4 MOA or 1/10 MIL are both right around that sweet spot.”

READ MIL vs. MOA Cal Zant Article.

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March 26th, 2019

Safety Alert — Smith & Wesson 15-22 Rifle Bolt Issue

M&P Smith Wesson 15-22 Magpul cross training rimfire tactical

Smith & Wesson has issued a CONSUMER SAFETY ALERT for the M&P 15-22, a semi-auto .22LR rimfire rifle with ergonomics like the centerfire AR15. If you own an M&P 15-22, you need to inspect the bolt. A manufacturing problem with the bolt could allow the gun to fire when the bolt closes, even without pulling the trigger. This inspection process is described in this video.

Smith & Wesson states: “The bolt from your M&P 15-22 must be inspected to determine whether it exhibits the condition identified in this notice. To determine whether your firearm is affected by this condition, please inspect your firearm by following the inspection instructions provided here. We are asking consumers of all M&P 15-22 firearms manufactured before February 1, 2019 to inspect their bolt for this condition.”

M&P Smith Wesson 15-22 Magpul cross training rimfire tactical

Smith & Wesson Notice:
M&P 15-22 CONSUMER SAFETY ALERT
AND INSPECTION PROCEDURE

PRODUCT AFFECTED: ALL models of M&P15-22 rifles and pistols manufactured before February 1, 2019.

STOP USING YOUR M&P 15-22 UNTIL IT HAS BEEN INSPECTED AND YOUR BOLT REPLACED (IF NECESSARY).

Smith & Wesson has identified two M&P 15-22 firearms from recent production on which the breech face counter bore depth was not within manufacturing specification. In those firearms, the lack of depth may allow the bolt, upon closing, to crush the rim of the case, causing the round to fire, cycling the bolt, and potentially resulting in multiple discharges without depressing the trigger. This issue can occur in the following two scenarios:

1) With a loaded magazine in the firearm and the bolt locked to the rear, depressing the bolt release to allow the bolt to drop freely may ignite the round as the bolt closes without engaging the trigger and with the safety selector in either the safe or the fire position, and may also result in multiple discharges.

2) With a loaded magazine in the firearm, bolt in the closed position and a round in the chamber and the safety selector in the fire position, depressing the trigger will cause the round to fire normally, however as the bolt cycles, the next round may be ignited by the bolt crushing the rim of the case as it closes, causing multiple discharges.

We believe that these are isolated incidents, however, any unintended discharge of a firearm has the potential to cause injury. Therefore, we have developed this inspection procedure to ensure that all products in the field are safe to use. We are asking customers to perform the following procedure and to refrain from using their M&P15-22 until the bolt has been inspected and replaced as necessary.

REMEDY/ACTION TO BE TAKEN: The bolt from your M&P15-22 must be inspected to determine whether it exhibits the condition identified in this notice. To determine whether your firearm is affected by this condition, please inspect your firearm by following the inspection instructions provided here.

Safety Alert Tip from EdLongrange. We welcome reader submissions.

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March 26th, 2019

Sportsman’s Warehouse Now Offers Gunsmithing Services

sportsman's warehouse gunsmith smithing gunsmithing Utah mail chambering stock assemble

This is good news for gun-owners. Sportsman’s Warehouse (SW), which operates 92 retail stores in 23 states, now offers gunsmithing. Gun enthusiasts can get complete firearms gunsmithing services at the new Sportsman’s Warehouse Gunsmith Center in Utah. You can ship your rifles, pistols, or shotguns to the SW Gunsmith Center, or simply drop off your firearm at ANY Sportsman’s Warehouse store. The SW Gunsmith Center, equipped with mills and lathes, offers complete repair, refinishing, threading, metal, and stock work. For more info, visit: www.Sportsmans.com/gunsmith.

sportsman's warehouse gunsmith smithing gunsmithing Utah mail chambering stock assemble

“Customers can quickly and easily drop off their firearms directly at our new Gunsmith Service Center in Utah, take them to any Sportsman’s Warehouse store, or ship them in for service,” states Jon Barker, Sportsman’s Warehouse President/CEO. “Expanding from the Utah market, we now offer this unique service to customers nationwide, including our 92 store locations.” SW has a loyalty program — each dollar spent at the Gunsmith Center gives members a point towards earning SW gift cards.

sportsman's warehouse gunsmith smithing gunsmithing Utah mail chambering stock assemble

Fees Are Reasonable — $200 for Barrel Chambering
There is a $45 minimum charge for guns left overnight, and a $68/hour labor rate. A barrel chambering/fitting job costs $200. Threading a muzzle costs $100.00. Fitting an aftermarket AR trigger is $45. Blue-printing a bolt-action receiver costs $175.00. Glass-bedding an action costs $90-$175. CLICK HERE for Gunsmithing Fee Schedule.

sportsman's warehouse gunsmith smithing gunsmithing Utah mail chambering stock assembleThe new Sportsman’s Warehouse gunsmith shop is located in SW’s Salt Lake City Distribution Center. The workspace features four stations for gunsmiths to work on rifles, shotguns, pistols, and muzzleloaders. They also have added a full production lathe that is designed for 24-hour-a-day operation, as well as a large end mill for a variety of metal working operations.

Finish tanks, a spray booth and oven for Cerakote, along with other pieces of equipment that will allow them to perform almost any gun service or customization are being installed.

“The only thing we won’t offer is custom wood stock building,” said Bill Sturtevant, Head Gunsmith. “The time necessary for that service takes too much time and pulls our gunsmiths off of other projects for too long. But just about anything else, including refinishing stocks, is on the table.”

Sportsman’s Warehouse will offer 1-year and 3-Year Firearm Service Plans supported by the company’s gunsmiths. Plans include: mounting and bore sighting, field cleaning, factory-service augmentation, free shipping to the factory for repair, and discounts on Gunsmith Service Center work.

Story Tip from EdLongrange. We welcome reader submissions.

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March 25th, 2019

Bargain-Finder 183: 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. Graf’s and Creedmoor Sports — Peterson Brass

peterson brass

Peterson Brass is quickly becoming a leading cartridge brass producer for good reason. Peterson offers good quality, long-lasting, American-made brass at very competitive prices. For PRS and other disciplines not requiring one-hole accuracy, Peterson brass may be up to the task. Plus some Peterson brass varieties come pre-sorted by weight and length — that saves time! Along with popular cartridge types, such as 6.5 Creedmoor, 6mmBR, and .308 Win, Peterson offers brass for cartridges with fewer brass options — such as 6XC, .300 Norma Magnum, .375 CheyTac, .408 CheyTac, and others. Peterson’s CheyTac brass has found favor with the ELR crowd. Purchase Peterson Brass from Graf and Sons or Creedmoor Sports. Both vendors offer competitive pricing and great customer service.

2. Amazon — Digital Flex-Cord WiFi BoreScope, $32.99

digital borescope

borescope endoscope wireless digital camera wifi wirelessHave you wanted a high-end optical borescope but couldn’t bear the price (as much as a complete rifle)? Here’s an incredibly affordable alternative. For under forty bucks you can get a high-tech, digital endoscope that sends video, via WiFi, to your Android or iOS smartphone, or other mobile device.

This is a great value. Pick up one of these digital borescopes for only $32.99. These digital endoscopes feature a 5.5mm-diameter camera head so you can scope just about any barrel from .22 caliber up to .50 caliber. NOTE: A buyer reports the mirror extension increases the end diameter to 6.5mm so that limits 90deg views with smaller diameter barrels. The unit sends the image wirelessly to your phone, and charges with a USB connection. Watch in real time or record for future viewing. Along with bore-inspection chores, you can use this versatile gadget to find parts you drop behind the bench or even inspect your vehicles.

3. Bruno’s — Berger 7mm 184gr Hybrids, $45.70/100

berger 184gr hybrids

If you’re a competitive shooter, you know how important it is to get all the components you need for the entire match season or risk running short at the worst time. Topping the “must have” list of many F-Class competitors are the record-setting Berger 7mm/.284 184gr Hybrid Target bullets. Brunos Shooters Supply now has these Berger 7mm 184gr Hybrid Target Bullets in stock. These will, no doubt, become very hard-to-find later this year. So don’t miss out while they’re available or you’ll be sorry later. Bruno’s HERE: Berger 7mm Hybrids $47.30/100.

4. March Optics — All Scopes on Sale

March Optics Sale

Every time we head to a match we see more and more March Optics on the line and there’s a good reason why. March offers some amazing scopes, offering incredible clarity, sharpness, and magnification ranges you won’t find on other scope series. If you’re looking to upgrade to a serious, competition-grade optic, here is your chance to grab a March scope at up to 30% off.

5. Amazon — Howard Leight Impact Electronic Muffs, $35.99

Howard Leight Ear Muffs

All firearms enthusiasts need to protect their hearing. Even a single shot can damage your hearing. We like to use double coverage, with plugs under electronic muffs. This provides outstanding hearing protection, AND you can still hear range commands. The very popular Howard Leight Impact Sport ear muffs are now on sale for just $35.99. With that attractive price, there’s no excuse for not having ear protection in your range bag. These Impact Sport muffs are without question the most commonly-used electronic muffs because they offer great performance for the price.

6. Natchez — Lyman Auto-Advance Target System, $109.49

lyman auto advance target

Target cameras and electronic targets are cool but of course that all comes with high prices and technical hassles. Now there’s a smart, affordable solution that lets you quickly change your targets without moving from your firing position. The Lyman Auto Advance Target System holds multiple targets on a motor-advanced roll. With the push of a button, you can command new targets to roll up into view. The wireless controller lets you place the target frame up to 200 yards away. Lyman sells a variety of target rolls. Each has enough targets to keep you shooting all weekend without changing. We really like this unit for rimfire shooting. The unit is easy to set-up and adjust for different heights.

7. Midsouth — Assorted Hornady Gauge and Comparator Tools

hornady comparator tools

Bullet seating depth is a key variable in precision reloading. For best accuracy you really need to know LENGTH to LANDS, i.e. the point at which your bullet will first touch the rifling in the barrel. Adjustment of cartridge base-to-ogive length (from “jam” to “jump”) is a critical method of optimizing rifle accuracy. With some barrels, cartridge types, and bullets it may be best to seat into the lands. With other barrels and bullets you’ll want to “jump” the bullets 20, 30, or even 40 thousandths (or more). To determine your length to lands with repeatable precision, we recommend the Hornady Comparator tools. Grab the straight OAL gauge and either the basic set with 6 inserts or the full set with 14 inserts and start collecting real data about your chambers. You can also grab an extra comparator body on sale.

8. Amazon — Pop Packs Color Burst Targets, $28.91

pop sacks bursting targets

Do you love reactive targets but don’t live in an area that allows exploding targets? These colorful Pop Packs liquid-filled splash targets offer a safe, cost-effective and fun alternative to exploding targets. Now you can grab 48 Pop Packs bursting targets for just $28.91. There are also 12-packs, 24-packs, and even 96-packs of these bursting Pop Packs targets. The more you buy the lower the cost per sack. Keep in mind these make a messy splatter and should not be used without permission of your range owner or managers.

9. Palmetto State Armory — Multi-Brand Scope Savings

scope sale

If you’ve been looking for a feature-laden riflescope for your next gun, check out Palmetto State Armory (PSA). This vendor has some lesser-known brands, such as Eotech, at great savings. And PSA has the new Trijicon zooms. Trijicon, famed for its reflex optics, now makes very high quality zoom optics. This week’s PSA Scope Sale saves you money on brands such as Trijicon and EOtech that rarely go on sale. In addition, there are big discounts on Burris and other big names.

This week’s Deal Selections sourced by F-Class John.

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March 25th, 2019

What You Need to Know About Primers — Explained by an Expert

Primer Priming Tool Magnum primers foil anvil primer construction reloading powder CCI
Winchester Pistol Primers on bench. Photo courtesy UltimateReloader.com.

There is an excellent article about primers on the Shooting Times website. We strongly recommend you read Mysteries And Misconceptions Of The All-Important Primer, written by Allan Jones. Mr. Jones is a bona fide expert — he served as the manager of technical publications for CCI Ammunition and Speer Bullets and Jones authored three editions of the Speer Reloading Manual.

» READ Full Primer “Mysteries and Misconceptions” Article

This authoritative Shooting Times article explains the fine points of primer design and construction. Jones also reveals some little-known facts about primers and he corrects common misconceptions. Here are some highlights from the article:

Primer Priming Tool Magnum primers foil anvil primer construction reloading powder CCISize Matters
Useful Trivia — even though Small Rifle and Small Pistol primer pockets share the same depth specification, Large Rifle and Large Pistol primers do not. The standard pocket for a Large Pistol primer is somewhat shallower than its Large Rifle counterpart, specifically, 0.008 to 0.009 inch less.

Magnum Primers
There are two ways to make a Magnum primer — either use more of the standard chemical mix to provide a longer-burning flame or change the mix to one with more aggressive burn characteristics. Prior to 1989, CCI used the first option in Magnum Rifle primers. After that, we switched to a mix optimized for spherical propellants that produced a 24% increase in flame temperature and a 16% boost in gas volume.

Foiled Again
Most component primers have a little disk of paper between the anvil and the priming mix. It is called “foil paper” not because it’s made of foil but because it replaces the true metal foil used to seal early percussion caps. The reason this little disk exists is strictly a manufacturing convenience. Wet primer pellets are smaller than the inside diameter of the cup when inserted and must be compacted to achieve their proper diameter and height. Without the foil paper, the wet mix would stick to the compaction pins and jam up the assembly process.

Read Full Primer Story on ShootingTimes.com:
https://www.shootingtimes.com/editorial/ammunition_st_mamotaip_200909/100079

VIDEOS about PRIMERS
Here are two videos that offer some good, basic information on primers:

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March 25th, 2019

Revolver Showdown — Miculek Shoots S&W, Colt, & Ruger

Jerry Miculek smith wesson colt python wheelgun ruger revolver showdown
Hornady sponsored shooter Jerry Miculek — Yamil Sued Photo.

If you are considering acquiring a revolver for fun shooting, self-defense, or competition, you should definitely watch this YouTube video. In this 23-minute presentation, legendary shooter Jerry Miculek puts three .357/.38 SPL wheelguns through their paces. Jerry, one of the greatest revolver shooters in history, hosts a “Revolver Showdown” with three popular wheelguns: 1) S&W L frame (3″ bbl); 2) Colt Python (6″ bbl); and 3) Ruger Speed Six (2.75″ bbl).

Smith & Wesson Model 686 Plus, L-Frame, 7-rd .357 Magnum/38 SPL, 3″ Barrel.
Jerry Miculek Revolver showdown comparison S&W Colt Ruger

Colt Python (Nickel), 6-rd .357 Magnum/38 SPL, 6″ Barrel.
Jerry Miculek Revolver showdown comparison S&W Colt Ruger

Ruger Speed Six, 6-rd .357 Magnum/38 SPL, 3″ Barrel.
Jerry Miculek Revolver showdown comparison S&W Colt Ruger

Jerry Miculek Revolver showdown comparison S&W Colt RugerTesting at 10 Yards and 50 Yards
In the video, Jerry shoots all three revolvers rapid-fire, double-action at 10 yards. Then he shoots the three guns single-action, slow-fire at 50 yards (starting at time mark 7:19).

After his range session, Jerry examines nine medium frame revolvers, comparing and contrasting design features. Jerry considers these factors:

1. Accuracy
2. Balance and Handling
3. Speed and Sureness of Trigger Return (watch video at 3:45″ re Colt.)
4. Reliability
5. Barrel Twist Rate
6. Strength of Construction/Durability

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