January 27th, 2021

New-for-2021 Products Showcased by Shooting Illustrated

Shooting Illustrated new 2021 products Winchester Wildcat rimfire suppressor ready .22 LR

Although the 2021 SHOT Show was cancelled, you can find many new-for-2021 products online. The NRA’s Shooting Illustrated website has put together a collection of 28 new products including rifles, pistols, shotguns, optics, safety gear and more — all from top manufacturers. Some of the features include test videos, such as a report on a S&W M&P fitted with the new Leupold DeltaPoint Micro red dot optic.

The Shooting Illustrated article reviews 28 products total. Here are two rifles, two pistols, and one shotgun featured in Shooting Illustrated’s New Products Showcase:

Winchester Wildcat .22 LR SR, Suppressor-Ready Model

Winchester Wildcat rimfire suppressor ready .22 LR

Winchester has introduced a Wildcat SR, a suppressor-ready version of its popuplar Wildcat 22 semi-auto .22 LR rifle. This new Wildcat SR comes with a 16.5″ barrel threaded 1/2-28 TPI at the muzzle (with muzzle cap). This will allow the Wildcat SR to fit most rimfire suppressors as well as many muzzle brakes. Shooting Illustrated liked the general features of the Wildcat SR: “The rifle… has a rugged polymer upper assembly, lower receiver assembly and ambidextrous skeletonized buttstock for light weight and strength. The rear sight is adjustable for both elevation and windage and there is also a ramped post front sight.” We are pleased to see that the Winchester Wildcat SR boasts an integral Picatinny Rail for mounting optics.

Browning X-Bolt Mountain Pro Carbon

Browning X-Bolt Mountain Pro
Browning X-Bolt Mountain Pro

We like the Browning X-Bolt rifles. Browning offers good protective coatings on the barreled actions, and the camo treatments are nicely done. For 2021, Browning has a new line of X-Bolt Mountain Pro rifles. These include a new-generation carbon fiber stock that is even lighter, with noise-dampening foam for added comfort. The X-Bolt Mountain Pros also come with a Recoil Hawg muzzle brake that Browning says can reduce felt recoil by as much as 73%. The stainless steel action and barrel come with a protective Cerakote Burnt Bronze or Tungsten finish. And internally the barrel boasts a “proprietary lapping process” for easier cleaning and quicker break-in times. For that custom touch, the bolt and bolt knob are spiral fluted. These new X-Bolt Mountain Pros are not inexpensive. Browning lists an MSRP of $2,399.99 – $2,459.99. Expect “street price” around $2000.00.

Savage Renegauge Competition 12ga Shotgun

Savage Renegauge 12 ga shotgun competition

Here’s an impressive new 12 gauge shotgun from Savage. This boast an extended magazine tube that holds 9+1 rounds. The looks are notable, with Red Cerakote on the Receiver and mag tube, with a black melonited fluted barrel with ventilated ridb and HI-VIZ front site. The stock adjusts for LOP, comb height, drop and cast and there is a rod recoil buffer in the buttstock. Shooting Illustrated notes that the Savage has an advanced gas system: “The Savage Renegauge Competition shotgun features the DRIV gas system (Dual Regulating Inline Valve) gas system which ensures excess gas vents before it drives the bolt, resulting in consistent ejection, less felt recoil, and a … fast cyclic rate[.]”

Volquartsen Black Mamba-X .22 LR Pistol

Volquartsen Black Mamba .22 LR Pistol

Volquartsen has released its new Black Mamba-X pistol for .22 LR competitors in speed matches. This features a Volquartsen’s LLV-4X 4.5-inch Competition Upper with integral universal red-dot mount. The Black Mamba-X features a push-button takedown configuration. Other standard features include: A ½x28 threaded stainless steel, 4.5″ barrel, Volquartsen Accurizing Kit allowing 2.25-pound trigger pull.

FN America FN 509 LS Edge

FN America FN 509 LS Edge pistol optics mount red dot

This new FN 509 LS Edge pistol has a longer slide with cut-outs, aggressive checkering, and good controls. Shooting Illustrated notes the benefits of FN’s smart signt attachment design: “The real key to the FN 509 LS Edge is the sighting system. It has a high front sight with a green fiber-optic insert and serrated front blade to reduce glare. The rear sight is a deep trough.” This patented rear sight design allows a very low red dot position, which gets “the sight real low in the slide and helps it co-witness perfectly with the iron sights.” Various inserts are available for many types of pistol optics.

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January 27th, 2021

Gunsmarts Video Series from S&W — Safety and Gun Handling

Smith Wesson gunsmarts safety pistol shooting sights grip stance training videos

Do you know someone getting started in the shooting sports? Or perhaps you know shotgun or rifle shooters who want to improve their handgun skills because they have obtained CCW pistol permits? Then here is a good resource for those shooters-in-training. Smith & Wesson GUNSMARTS is a new video series that covers the key points of firearm ownership, from purchasing a pistol, to shooting techniques, gun safety, and storage. While this 38-part series does include some rifle-centric videos, it is mostly focused on handgun training, as you might expect from Smith & Wesson.

CLICK HERE to Watch All 38 S&W Gunsmarts Videos »

The GUNSMARTS series has 38 different videos covering gun safety, gun operation, marksmanship, maintenance, and secure storage. There are both general videos about gun handling and very specific videos about topics such as sight alignment, magazine loading, optics and more. Here are six of the best videos in the series. You will find 32 more on the Smith & Wesson Gunsmarts Playlist Page.

10 Tips for Your First Visit to the Range

Shooting Fundamentals — Sight Picture and Sight Alignment

Handgun Skills — Grip Pressure

Concealed Carry Positions and Holster/Belt Options

Considerations When Purchasing Your First Firearm

Smith Wesson gunsmarts safety pistol shooting sights grip stance training videos

Smith Wesson gunsmarts safety pistol shooting sights grip stance training videos

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January 27th, 2021

Fun Competition on a Budget — CMP Rimfire Sporter Matches

BRRC Rimfire Sporter CMP match

Readers often ask us: “Is there an inexpensive way I can get started in position shooting?” The answer is “yes” — across the country CMP-affiliated clubs host Rimfire Sporter matches. You can use a wide variety of .22 LR rimfire rifles — manual actions (such as a Winchester model 52) or semi-automatics (such as a Ruger 10/22). There are prone, sitting/kneeling, and standing stages. CMP rules provide separate classifications for scoped rifles, open-sighted rifles, and aperature-sighted rifles. The matches are fun, the ammo is inexpensive, and everyone has a good time while improving their marksmanship.

The rapid-fire sitting or kneeling stage of a CMP-sanctioned .22 Sporter Match consists of two, 5-shot strings. A manually-operated or semi-automatic rifle may be used for this match.

This video shows the sitting/kneeling rapid-fire stage of a Rimfire Sporter match.

Our friend Dennis Santiago helps run CMP Rimfire Sporter Matches in Southern California. Dennis observes: “You want something challenging? Well that X-Ring 50 yards away is the diameter of a 50 cent piece, and there are people out there that can womp that thing with iron sights.”

BRRC Rimfire Sporter CMP match

Dennis notes: “There are six (6) stages of fire on a tough little target. Notice the rifles that can be used run the gamut from pump and bolt actions to variations on the semi-auto theme. All still require a good eye and a steady hold to earn one’s bragging rights for the day. A match takes about an hour and a half per relay. The slowest part of the match is initial sighting in. It’ll take longer than the allocated 5 minutes for the typical first timer coming to a club match.”

At Dennis’s Burbank Rifle & Revolver Club (BRRC), procedures are modified a little bit: “What we typically do at BRRC is run two relays. Experienced competitors shoot per the full rulebook. New shooters are afforded a bit more relaxed environment to make the experience more fun and inviting. We do the same thing in our M-1 Garand Clinic/Match series.”

BRRC Rimfire Sporter CMP match

Rimfire Sporter Match Basics
The CMP Rimfire Sporter Rifle Match is an inexpensive, fun-oriented competition using .22 caliber sporter rifles (plinking and small game rifles) commonly owned by most gun enthusiasts. To compete, all you need is a basic rifle, safety gear, and ammunition. No fancy, high-dollar rifles are required.

The event is shot with standard sporter-type, rimfire rifles weighing no more than 7 ½ lbs, with sights and sling. Rifles may be manually-operated or semi-automatic. Shooters with manually-operated actions are given extra time in the rapid-fire stage to compensate for the difference. (See Video).

There are three classes of competition — the standard “O Class” for open-sighted rifles, “T-Class” for telescope-sighted and rear aperture-sighted rifles and “Tactical Rimfire” class, which is a .22 caliber A4 or AR15 style rifle. Firing for all classes is done at 50 and 25 yards on a target with a 1.78″ ten-ring and an 18″ outer one-ring. Even new shooters can get hits on this target, but it’s still tough enough that no one yet has fired a perfect 600×600 score.

The Civilian Marksmanship Program (CMP) has a CMP Guide to Rimfire Sporter Shooting. This FREE, 50-page digital publication covers equipment, positions, course of fire, rules, scoring and much more. You’ll find helpful “how-to” sections on aiming, sight picture, hold control, and trigger control. Reading these instructional sections can benefit any prone or three-position competitive shooter.

Rimfire Sporter Guide Shooting

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