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September 22nd, 2021

Build a Better Barrel Cooler for under $15 — DIY Project

F-Class John Yivar barrel cooler cooling fan Yivar hose empty chamber indicator ECI

In this article we cover a better barrel cooler you can build yourself for under $15. This uses a high-speed inflator fan sold on Amazon, along with a piece of temp-stable tubing. Forum member (and popular YouTube host) F-Class John devised this system. He found it cools his barrels in less than half the time of some other products. And the system can also serve as an Empty Chamber Indicator (ECI).

Barrel coolers perform an important function — reducing barrel operating temperatures. This can definitely help preserve barrel life and help maintain good accuracy in competition. In addition, keeping barrels cool can reduce the chances of excess chamber pressure, an important safety concern.

F-Class John Yivar barrel cooler cooling fan Yivar hose empty chamber indicator ECI

There are a variety of commercially-available barrel cooling systems. There are external fans, as well as internal, slip-in systems than can do double duty as an Empty Chamber Indicator (ECI). You can get the original yellow $39.99 BarrelCool or the red $59.99 RifleKuhl from Magnetospeeed. Both are good products. But F-Class John came up with a system that works even better — one you can build for a fraction of the cost of those yellow or red fans.

F-Class John Yivar barrel cooler cooling fan Yivar hose empty chamber indicator ECI

Build Your Own Barrel Cooler for Under $15
This system is easy to put together. Order a $11.99 YIVAR pump from Amazon. This is a small, high-output pump designed to inflate air mattresses. Then get some high-temp-rated tubing from a local supply shop. Then trim the case-head off an old piece of brass. Taper the end of the tube a bit and fit it in the case. NOTE: Use of the fitted case is optional. Having the case provides a nice fit in your chamber. But the system works pretty well just with the tubing and Yivar air pump.

In his .284 Win barrel, the Yivar pump system blows air at 10+ mph out the muzzle. F-Class John says that is “about three times the velocity of other systems”. The Yivar pump “holds about 45 minutes of charge” so he can use it for 15 minutes after each of three strings in a match. And then it can be recharged from a USB-compatible battery pack at the range. John notes the fan continues to blow about the same speed for the full 45-minute charge duration.

F-Class John Yivar barrel cooler cooling fan Yivar hose empty chamber indicator ECIKey Benefits of this system

1. Faster Cooling
2. Low Cost (under $15)
3. Longer run time on battery
4. Fan battery is USB rechargeable
5. Finally a use for that worn-out brass

John confirmed the effectiveness of his barrel cooler using a stick-on temperature tape placed on the barrel. This showed that his fan system cooled the barreled in less than HALF the time as the plastic commercial fan systems. In addition, his run time was excellent, and the Yivar’s built-in Lithium-Ion battery is fully rechargeable so he never has to buy expensive batteries.

What are the downsides? Not many. The fan IS somewhat noisy — watch video at 4:04-4:28 time mark to hear the fan. F-Class John notes, however, that the Yivar fan is about 4 decibels (dB) quieter than a Magnetospeed RifleKuhl, so the Yivar’s noise is not that bad.

Here are comments from YouTube viewers who like F-Class John’s invention:

Finally something affordable! It’s compact and can be recharged at the range. I have room for this but not all the other gadgets you show. And a poor pensioner like my self can afford it! Thanks for the tip.

Ingenious and awesome idea! I bought one as soon as I saw this. I’ve been thinking about getting a cooler when I’m testing my loads. Thanks!

Brilliant… Brilliant… Brilliant! I have been deferring buying a barrel cooler for years now on account of wanting to spend my toy fund budget on other things. Considering how cheap it is to build, there is no excuse to not make one now.

Fan with Plain Hose Also Works Well (No Brass Case Cutting/Fitting Required)
F-Class John likes the custom fit he achieves with the hose inserted into a piece of modified brass. However he notes that the system also works well with no brass at all — i.e. just hose and fan. If you have a small diameter chamber, this may actually work better. Simply put the hose on the fan, trim/taper the forward hose end to fit and you are good to go.

F-Class John explains: “The heavy duty tubing and the motor works just fine without a brass case. The hose can sit in the chamber by itself. Obviously not every brass case will easily allow for you to put it on the end of the tube. For many people simply using the tube (without brass) may be the simpler option.”

F-Class John Yivar barrel cooler cooling fan Yivar hose empty chamber indicator ECI

Permalink - Articles, - Videos, Gear Review, Tech Tip 2 Comments »
September 22nd, 2021

Ten Ways to Win — Lessons for Competitive Shooters

SSG Amanda Elsenboss high power national championship
SSG Amanda Elsenboss, now with the Pennsylvania National Guard, is the 2021 NRA National High Power Champion. And Amanda also won the NRA Long Range National Championship in 2019. These two major titles place Amanda among the greatest American shooters and one of only three women in U.S. history to win the High Power title. Amanda combines a superb “mental game” with outstanding gun-handling and wind-reading skills.

DCM CMP Gary AndersonIn the archives of On The Mark magazine, DCM Emeritus Gary Anderson, an Olympic Gold medal-winning shooter in his younger years, offers sage advice for competitive shooters.

In his article Ten Lessons I Wished I Had Learned as a Young Shooter, Anderson provides ten important guidelines for everyone involved in competitive shooting. Here are the Ten Lessons, but you should read the full article. Anderson provides detailed explanations of each topic with examples from his shooting career.

READ Full Article by Gary Anderson in On the Mark.

LESSON 1 – NATURAL ABILITY WILL NOT MAKE YOU A SHOOTING CHAMPION.
(You also need hard work, training effort and perseverance.)

LESSON 2 – ANGER IS THE ENEMY OF GOOD SHOOTING.
(The key to recovering from a bad shot is to stay cool, no matter what happens.)

LESSON 3 – BAD SHOTS CAN TEACH YOU MORE THAN GOOD SHOTS.
(Today, error analysis is one of the most powerful tools for improving scores.)

LESSON 4 – NEVER GO WITHOUT A SHOT PLAN.
(A shot plan is a detailed breakdown of each of the steps involved in firing a shot.)

LESSON 5 – PRACTICE IN BAD CONDITIONS AS WELL AS GOOD CONDITIONS.
(Most competitions are fired in windy conditions or where there are plenty of distractions.)

LESSON 6 – CHAMPIONS ARE POSITIVE, OPTIMISTIC PEOPLE.
(Negative shooters expect bad results; positive shooters expect to train hard to change bad results.)

LESSON 7 – IT’S NOT ABOUT WHETHER YOU WIN OR LOSE.
(It’s about how hard you try to win.)

LESSON 8 – YOUR DOG WON’T BITE YOU AFTER SHOOTING A BAD SCORE.
(Hopefully your coach, parents and friends won’t bite you either.)

LESSON 9 – YOUR PRESS CLIPPINGS CAN HURT YOU OR HELP YOU.
(Winning can go to our heads. We start thinking we are so good we don’t have to work hard any more.)

LESSON 10 — YOU NEVER SHOT YOUR BEST SCORE.
(Great champions are always looking for ways to improve.)

USAMU shooters on the firing line at the Wa-Ke’-De outdoor range in Bristol, IN.
smallbore national championships Wa-ke-de
Photo courtesy USAMU.

About Gary Anderson
DCM CMP Gary AndersonGary Anderson served as the Director of the Civilian Marksmanship Program (CMP) from 1999-2009, and is now DCM Emeritus. As a Nebraska farmboy, Gary grew up hunting and shooting. Dreams of winning an Olympic Gold Medal in shooting led Gary to the U.S. Army. In 1959, he joined the elite U.S. Army Marksmanship Unit. Just two years later, he won his first national championship.

At the 1962 World Shooting Championships in Egypt, Anderson stunned the shooting world by winning four individual titles and setting three new world records. At the 1964 Tokyo Olympics, Gary won the 300m free-rifle Gold Medal, setting a new world record in the process. At the 1966 World Shooting Championships in Germany, Anderson won three additional world titles. At the 1968 Olympics, Gary won a second gold medal in the 300m free-rifle event.

After his “retirement” from international competition, Gary competed in the National High Power Championships, winning the President’s National Trophy in 1973, 1975 and 1976. Over his competitive career, Anderson won two Olympic Gold Medals, seven World Championships, and sixteen National Championships. He is unquestionably one of the greatest American marksmen ever.

Permalink - Articles, Competition, Shooting Skills No Comments »
September 22nd, 2021

How American Hunters Promote Wildlife Conservation

National hunting fishing day wildlife conservation habitat preservation tags licensing
This Saturday, September 25, 2021, is National Hunting and Fishing Day.

There are over 9.2 million hunters in the United States. The fees paid by hunters are essential to support conservation efforts and to protect/maintain habitats.

These infographics explain the vital role that American hunters play in protecting wild species in North America. Currently 60% of state Fish & Wildlife Agency funding comes from excise taxes and licensee fees paid by hunters and anglers. The system has provided billions of dollars for conservation over the past nine decades. Since the late 1930s, hunters, target shooters and the firearms industry have been the nation’s largest contributors to conservation, paying for programs that benefit America’s wildlife.

National hunting fishing day wildlife conservation habitat preservation tags licensing

CLICK to Load full-screen Infographic (Easier to Read)

National hunting fishing day wildlife conservation habitat preservation tags licensing

GAOA outdoors act hunting
Deer hunting photo courtesy SportsmansGuide.com.

The Pittman-Robertson Act generates $700 million annually, which is distributed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to state fish and game agencies across America.

National hunting fishing day wildlife conservation habitat preservation tags licensing

Permalink Hunting/Varminting, News, Shooting Skills No Comments »