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January 15th, 2022

Fitness and Cardio Training for Competitive Shooters

fitness cardio training

In the archives of The First Shot (the CMP’s Online Magazine), SGT Walter E. Craig of the USAMU discusses physical conditioning for competitive shooters, particularly High Power competitors. Fitness training is an important subject that, curiously, is rarely featured in the shooting sports media. We seem to focus on hardware, or esoteric details of cartridge reloading. Yet physical fitness also matters, particularly for High Power shooters. In his article, Craig advocates: 1) weight training to strengthen the Skeletal Muscle System; 2) exercises to build endurance and stamina; and 3) cardiovascular conditioning programs to allow the shooter to remain relaxed with a controlled heart beat.

SGT Craig explains: “An individual would not enter a long distance race without first spending many hours conditioning his/her body. One should apply the same conditioning philosophy to [shooting]. Physical conditioning to improve shooting skills will result in better shooting performance[.] The objective of an individual physical training program is to condition the muscles, heart, and lungs thereby increasing the shooter’s capability of controlling the body and rifle for sustained periods.”


CLICK HERE to READ FULL FITNESS TRAINING ARTICLE »

In addition to weight training and cardio workouts (which can be done in a gym), SGT Craig advocates “some kind of holding drill… to develop the muscles necessary for holding a rifle for extended periods.”

For those with range access, Craig recommends a blind standing exercise: “This exercise consists of dry-firing one round, then live-firing one round, at a 200-yard standard SR target. For those who have access only to a 100-yard range, reduced targets will work as well. Begin the exercise with a timer set for 50 minutes. Dry-fire one round, then fire one live round and without looking at the actual impact, plot a call in a data book. Continue the dry fire/live fire sequence for 20 rounds, plotting after each round. After firing is complete, compare the data book to the target. If your zero and position are solid, the plots should resemble the target. As the training days add up and your zero is refined, the groups will shrink and move to the center.”

Brandon Green
Fitness training and holding drills help position shooters reach their full potential. Here is 5-Time U.S. National Long Range Champion John Whidden.

Training for Older Shooters
Tom Alves has written an excellent article A Suggested Training Approach for Older Shooters. This article discusses appropriate low-impact training methods for older shooters. Tom explains: “Many of the articles you will read in books about position shooting and the one mentioned above are directed more toward the younger generation of shooters in their 20s. If you look down the line at a typical high power match these days you are likely to see quite a few folks who are in their middle 30s and up. Many people in that age range have had broken bones and wear and tear on their joints so a training program needs to take that into account. For instance, while jogging for an extended period for heart and lung conditioning may be the recommended approach for younger folks, it may be totally inappropriate for older people.”

READ FULL ARTICLE by Tom Alves

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January 14th, 2022

CMP 2022 Competition Games Schedule

2022 cmp western games

The Civilian Marksmanship Program (CMP) has released its Competition Games schedule for 2022. These events feature rifle and pistol matches designed for experienced competitors as well as novice shooters. All Competition Games will include both rifle and pistol matches. CLICK HERE for full details on all the 2022 CMP Games, including event lists, policies, and registration details.

2022 CMP Games Schedule:

• March 11-20 – Western CMP Games & CMP HP Rifle Matches, Phoenix, Arizona

• April 22-May 1– Eastern CMP Games & CMP HP Rifle Matches, Camp Butner, North Carolina

• June 8-12 – Talladega D-Day Matches, Talladega, Alabama

• Sept. 18-25 – New England CMP Games & CMP HP Rifle Matches, Jericho, Vermont

• Oct. 16-23 – Oklahoma CMP Games & CMP HP Rifle Matches, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

• Nov. 14-20 – Talladega 600, Talladega, Alabama

2022 cmp western games

CLICK HERE for CMP Travel Games Registration INFO »

On the rifle side, the lineup of modern and vintage rifle events include M1 Garand, Springfield, Rimfire Sporter, Carbine and Vintage Sniper Matches. A Rifle Marksmanship 101 course allows participants to explore the fundamentals of secure rifle handling. Another educational opportunity is the GSM (Garand-Springfield-Vintage Military Rifle) New Shooter Clinic, which provides individuals an inside look at competing in CMP Games events. CMP Armorers will be on hand and will hold an M1 Garand Maintenance Clinic. All rifle competitions will be fired on CMP Targets, a user-friendly electronic target system that instantly displays shot placement and eliminates the need for pit duty — allowing for quicker matches.

CMP Games

Other rifle events will include: 4-Man Team Match, EIC Rifle Match and three days of 80-Shot events. The CMP Highpower Team will also put on a shooting clinic with demonstrations by top civilian Highpower service rifle competitors.

CMP games vintage Sniper

CMP pistol matches at the Games will include: CMP Match Pistol 2700, EIC Service Pistol, .22 Rimfire Pistol EIC, Military & Police Service Pistol and 1911 As-Issued Pistol matches. A Pistol Marksmanship 101 course, led by certified CMP instructors and leaders in the field today, offers an educational option for competitors on and off of the firing line.

2022 cmp western games
23022 Cmp games new england alt=

For more details about the 2022 CMP Games, including Registration Information and a detailed description of each Games event, visit the CMP website at https://thecmp.org/competitions/cmp-travel-games.

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January 9th, 2022

.375 EnABELR for Extreme Long Range Using Solid Bullets

Berger 379 grain 379gr solid bullet .375 caliber enabler

The .375 EnABELR Cartridge — Big and Fast

The .375 EnABELR cartridge was developed to offer magazine-feeding capabilities with the highest-BC solid bullets available. The .375 EnABELR cartridge is slightly shorter than a .375 CheyTac so it allows the round to mag-feed. Applied Ballistics is currently using brass made by Peterson. The .375 EnABELR has achieved impressive velocities — 2990 FPS — with prototype Berger 379-grain solid bullets fired from a 1:7″-twist 30″ barrel. Applied Ballistics may also test 1:8″-twist and 1:9″-twist barrels. READ Bullet Testing Report.

The .375 EnABELR cartridge was designed to offer .375 CheyTac performance in a slightly shorter package: “The problem with the .375 CheyTac is that, when loaded with the highest performance .375 caliber bullets (379-407 gr Berger Solids, and the 400-425 grain Cutting Edge Lazers) the round is not magazine feed-able in any action that’s sized for CheyTac cartridges.

Berger 379 grain 379gr solid bullet .375 caliber enabler

.375 cheytac .408 cheytac EnABLER Applied Ballistics Bryan Litz Cadex defense
Here is Mitchell Fitzpatrick, shooting the 375 EnABELR in an ELR Competition.

.375 cheytac .408 cheytac EnABLER Applied Ballistics Bryan Litz Cadex defense

“Knowing the .375 CheyTac produced substantial performance, and that it was just too long for magazine feeding, made it easy to converge on a design for the .375 EnABELR. We just had to make the case short enough to achieve magazine length with the desired bullets, while adding a little more diameter to keep the case capacity similar to the .375 CheyTac. The resulting basic shape is quite similar in proportions to the successful .338 Norma Magnum Cartridge which, interestingly, was selected as the cartridge for General Dynamics Lightweight Medium Machine Gun (LWMMG).”

Applied Ballistics .375 enABELR solid berger bullets

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January 8th, 2022

Getting Started in F-Class — Guide for F-TR and F-Open Newbies

Vince Bottomley Target Shooter F-Class F-Open F-TR

A while back, our friend Vince Bottomley in the UK wrote an excellent article for Target Shooter Magazine. Vince offers “solid-gold” advice for new F-TR and F-Open shooters. Vince reviews the cartridge options, and offers suggestions for a shooter’s first (and hopefully affordable) F-Class rifle. Vince also reviews various bipod choices for F-TR and discusses optics options (from $300 to $3000).

Here’s a short sample from the Target Shooter Magazine article:

Getting Started in F-Class by Vince Bottomley
As membership secretary of a large club, one of the questions I’m frequently asked – “What’s the best way to get started in F-Class?” My club has an F-Class shoot every couple of weeks at ranges from 300 to 1000 yards and, not surprisingly, it’s very popular.

F-TR or Open Class?
From a shaky start way back in 2004, the F-TR Class is now proving as popular as Open Class and, at GBFCA League shoots and club shoots, many shooters choose to start with a 308, shooting off a bi-pod – in other words F-TR. In Open Class, the 7mm WSM soon established itself as the “must have” cartridge – if you wanted to win but, the WSM’s appetite for barrels eventually brought another 7mm cartridge into play – the 284 Winchester. This 50-year-old stalwart was revived a decade or so ago as the 6.5-284 and indeed this cartridge found some favor with F-Class pioneers – before the potency of the WSM was discovered. If you don’t mind shelling out for a couple of barrels per year (barrel life is about 750 rounds with the WSM) go for the 7mm WSM but, if you require a decent round-count, then opt for the .284 Win and learn to read the wind a bit better!

F-TR f-class rifle match ben avery AZ
F-TR Rifle at the Ben Avery Shooting Facility in Phoenix, Arizona.

Scopes for F-Class
If you will be shooting 1000 yards then I would recommend at least 32 power and preferably a variable – like the 8-32. The cheapest “usable” scope in this range is the Sightron 8-32x56mm SIII. It’s a great scope for the money and at under $1000 (in the USA) it’s half the price of some of its competitors. It’s also light – at 1.5 lbs – and there are some great reticles for the F-Class shooter – like the LRMOA.

Vince Bottomley Target Shooter F-Class F-Open F-TR

Read Full Article on Target Shooter Magazine Website.

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January 7th, 2022

CMP Introduces New Rifle and Pistol CMP League Matches

CMP League Match 2022

The Civilian Marksmanship Program (CMP), starting this month, have authorized CMP League Matches at CMP-affiliated clubs throughout the USA. This will give shooters the ability to enjoy CMP-type competitions at their local ranges. The new CMP League Match Program will be open to any CMP-Affiliated Clubs. Participants’ average scores will be computed by CMP’s Competition Tracker, with awards distributed to the top competitors from around the country.

Beginning January 2022, the CMP will sanction a series of simulated head-to-head rifle, pistol, and CMP Games events for competitors to participate in from their home ranges. A CMP sanctioned match is an event hosted or sponsored by a CMP affiliated organization, where match sponsors agree to use CMP Competition Rules in conducting CMP Highpower Rifle, CMP Pistol and CMP Games competitions. Types of League Matches and available timeframes will include:

Rifle: March 15 – June 15 and/or August 15 – November 15
50 shot National Match Course (Non-EIC) (Full or Reduced)
4X20 (80 shots, Individual) (Full or Reduced)

Pistol: Outdoor Pistol League May 1 – October 31; Indoor Pistol League November 1 – April 30
30 Shot National Match Pistol Course (full or reduced)
900 Pistol Aggregate (.22 Rimfire, Centerfire, .45 Caliber or Service Pistol)

CMP Games Type Match: March 15-June 15 and/or August 15 – November 15
30 Shot As-Issued Military Rifle Course | Carbine | Rimfire Sporter

CMP League Match 2022

How to Get Your Local Club Involved

Interested clubs will need to fill out an application and also submit a match program. Once approved, the match director will be sent a spreadsheet to record official scores that will be compared among other participating clubs. Fees for these events include $10 per league to sanction, plus $2 per competitor.

CMP League INFO, including applications and match instructions, can be found on the CMP website at CMP.org/competitions/cmp-league-matches. Or call CMP Competition Support at 419-635-2141, ext. 714.

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January 5th, 2022

New and Revised CMP Rules for 2022 Released

CMP 20222 high power service rifle airgun pistol competition rules highpower

CMP 2022 Competition Rules Are Now Available

Article based on report by Gary Anderson, DCM Emeritus
The CMP has posted updated 2022 rulebooks on the CMP website. The CMP competition program began in 1996 with two disciplines, Service Rifle and Service Pistol. CMP competitions have now grown to include separate disciplines for Service Rifle, Service Pistol, .22 Rimfire Pistol, Service Revolver, As-Issued Military Rifle (Garand, Springfield, Vintage Military Rifle, M1 Carbine, Modern Military Rifle, Vintage Sniper Rifle), As-Issued Pistol (M9, M1911, M&P Service Pistol) and Rimfire Sporter Rifle competitions where the CMP is the national governing body. The CMP also issues rules for Match Pistol (3-gun pistol), Long-Range and Mid-Range Rifle, Smallbore Rifle (position and prone), Air Rifle, and Air Pistol to govern events it conducts in conjunction with the National Matches, CMP Competition Games, and other match sanctioning programs.

To govern all these target rifle and pistol disciplines, the CMP now publishes five different rulebooks. Here are links to download the 2022 editions of these rulebooks:

2022 CMP Highpower Rifle Competition Rules (25th Edition — 2022)
2022 CMP Smallbore Rifle Competition Rules (4th Edition — 2022)
2022 CMP Air Rifle and Air Pistol Competition Rules (1st Edition — 2022)
2022 CMP Pistol Competition Rules (25th Edition — 2022)
2022 CMP Games Rifle and Pistol Competition Rules (9th Edition — 2022)

CMP 20222 high power service rifle airgun pistol competition rules highpower

If anyone has questions about any 2022 CMP Competitions Rulebooks, contact the CMP Competitions Department at competitions@thecmp.org or (419) 635-2141, ext. 714 or 729. For Smallbore Rule questions, contact (419) 635-2141, ext. 730 or bdonoho@thecmp.org. For Air Rifle/Air Pistol questions, please contact (419) 635-2141, ext. 702 or airgun@thecmp.org.

jonathan Ocab photographer
Photo courtesy Jonathan Ocab, who himself earned the Distinguished Rifleman Badge.

Here are the Highpower (Centerfire) and Smallbore (Rimfire) Rifle Rules Changes for 2022. Other changes (e.g. Pistol Rules Changes) are provided below that:

CMP HIGHPOWER RIFLE COMPETITION RULE CHANGES

The CMP Highpower Rifle program includes 1) traditional Service Rifle events conducted according to National Trophy Match rules (no sighters, starting rapid-fire series from standing), 2) Highpower Rifle events conducted according to CMP Cup Match rules (with sighters, starting rapid-fire in position), 3) Long-Range Rifle (prone and F-class events at 800, 900, and 1000 yards) and Mid-Range Rifle (prone and F-class events at 600 yards). The CMP program for Mid- and Long-Range competitions now includes: 1) Match Rifle Prone Long-Range, 2) Service Rifle Prone Long-Range, 2) F-Class Long-Range, 3) AR Tactical Long-Range, 4) Prone Mid-Range, F-Class Mid-Range 6) AR Tactical Mid-Range, and 7) Service Rifle Mid-Range events.

CMP 20222 high power service rifle airgun pistol competition rules highpower

There are no major changes in the 2022 Highpower Rifle rules, but there are several technical changes that competitors and match sponsors will want to note. For example, Eye and Ear Protection is now required during Pit Duty:

Rule H2.6.9. Residency requirements for National Trophy Team Matches were changed to allow competitors who live in states that do not enter teams to join and compete for a team from an adjoining state. Competitors who wish to take advantage of this authorization must apply to CMP Competitions for annual approvals.
Rule H3.6.2. The rule requiring the wearing of eye and hearing protection on active Highpower Rifle ranges was clarified to also require wearing eye and hearing protection when in Highpower Rifle target pits.
Rules H3.8.2 & H6.5. Firing times for rapid-fire series on electronic targets are clarified. To equalize firing times between pit-operated and electronic targets, 3 seconds are added to electronic target firing times to compensate for the time it takes for pit-operated targets to rise from the pits to their fully elevated positions.
Rule H3.9.3 c). The allowance for an extra sighter when CMP Cup Matches at 600 yards are interrupted for more than 3 minutes was extended to also apply in all Long-Range events at 800, 900, and 1000 yards.
Rule H3.10.1. A CMP sanctioned Highpower Rifle match may be fired on ranges that have both electronic and pit-operated targets if random squadding is used. A new rule clarifies that for Service Rifle EIC Matches, all Non-Distinguished competitors must fire on the same type of target.
Rule H3.10.9. A procedure for correcting scores recorded in error was added.
Rule H3.10.10 h). A procedure for handling shots that were inadvertently not recorded was added.
Rule H3.10.11 b). If there is a missing shot with no evidence of a crossfire or off-target miss and it is confirmed that the competitor fired all ten shots, the competitor will be given the score of the lowest value hit for the missing shot. The previous requirement that the nine visible hits all had to be nines or tens was dropped.
Rule H5.2.2. F-Class Mid-Range 600-yard 3×20 competitors will be allowed unlimited sighters before the first 20-shot stage.
Rule H6.6.6 d). A procedure was added for allowing a sighter in matches where electronic targets are used for events where an additional sighter may be authorized after an interruption.

CMP rule 2022 eyewear

SMALLBORE RIFLE COMPETITION RULE CHANGES

The first CMP Smallbore Rifle Competition rulebook was released in 2018. These rules were used to conduct National Matches Smallbore Rifle Position and Prone Championships in 2018, 2019 and 2021. (The 2020 Championship was cancelled due to covid.) One of the most encouraging 2021 National Matches developments was an increase in competitors in the National Matches Smallbore Rifle Position Championship and the high percentage of those competitors who were juniors. Entries were up 44%, with 137 competitors. An impressive 88% of those competitors were juniors!

There are no significant Smallbore Rifle rule changes for 2022, but there are a couple of program developments to note:

Smallbore Rifle Distinguished Badges. Smallbore Distinguished Badges were introduced in 2020, but Covid prevented this new award opportunity from getting off the ground. With a new Camp Perry Open Smallbore Rifle event in May, the National Matches Smallbore Championship in July, and the expectation that there will be sanctioned Smallbore EIC Matches in 2022, the first presentation of Smallbore Distinguished Badges could occur in the coming year.

Smallbore Position Course of Fire. The CMP Smallbore Rifle rulebook mandates that Smallbore Rifle Position EIC Matches be 3×40 120-shot courses of fire, but if the pending ISSF change to 3×20 three-position events is finalized, CMP Smallbore Position EIC Matches likely will be changed to recognize 3×20 courses of fire as EIC Matches later in 2022.

Junior Age Limit Change. Since the Smallbore Rifle matches attract a high percentage of juniors, the age group rule change that extends junior eligibility to the day of a competitor’s 21st birthday, intermediate junior eligibility to the 18th birthday and sub-junior eligibility to the 15th birthday will impact many juniors who compete in these matches.

(more…)

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January 2nd, 2022

NRA Perpetual Trophies — Connecting Past to Present

Leech Cup Wimbledon Trophy Cup NRA SSUSA.org
Stunners in silver. Above are the NRA Leech Cup (left) and Wimbledon Cup (right).

Shooting Sports USA has a fascinating article about the Perpetual Trophies awarded in national-level NRA matches. The story recounts the history behind the elaborate trophies, some from the 1870s. SSUSA’s Jennifer Pearsall writes: “The pieces of wood, stone and precious metal … are more than just instant recognition of achievement. They are the link of the American shooter’s present to his or her patriotic past. As you read this legacy of the NRA ranges, their founders, and the long list of cups, bowls, and plaques, realize that the history of competitive shooting is undeniably a significant part of the foundation of this country”. Read Full Trophy Story HERE.

The NRA was co-founded by Col. William Church and Gen. George Wood Wingate (ranked Captain at the time). Both Church and Wingate hoped to improved the marksmanship skills of American soldiers. One of the newly-formed NRA’s first actions was to issue: “An Act to Establish a Rifle Range and Promote Skill in Marksmanship”. That led to the opening of the famed Creedmoor Range, with a special inaugural match in June of 1873.

Many of the awards presented in the first NRA matches were cash or firearms. Some of these firearms were heavily embellished works of art. In the very first match, a member of the 22nd New York Regiment took home a gold-mounted Winchester Model 1866 valued at $100 — big money for the time.

Leech Cup Wimbledon Trophy Cup NRA SSUSA.org
In the 1870s shooting competitions were social as well as sporting events. Ladies and gentlemen came to watch and cheer the winners. This illustration, originally from Harpers Weekly, portrays the shooters and the viewing gallery at the 1876 Grand Centennial Championship — the “Palma” Match.

The Leech Cup — A Gift from Ireland
The Leech Cup was created for the first meeting of the American and Irish shooting teams. The elaborate cup was presented by Major Arthur Leech, captain of the the Irish team, to the Amateur Rifle Club of New York. This masterpiece of Irish silversmithing was later given to the NRA in 1901 by the New York Club. Today, the Leech Cup is the oldest trophy offered in overall NRA competitive target shooting, awarded through the National High Power Long Range Championships.

Michelle Gallagher with Leech Cup in 2013.
Leech Cup Wimbledon Trophy Cup NRA SSUSA.org

The Wimbledon Cup
The Wimbledon Trophy was a gift from the NRA of Great Britain. It was given, as a gesture of sportsmanship, after the the U.S. Team was denied the ability to compete in England’s Elcho Shield match, then limited to Britain, Scotland, and Ireland. To maintain friendly competitive relations, the British presented the Americans with a large, engraved, lion-footed tankard trophy to be awarded each year to the Champion U.S. long-distance rifleman.

Wimbledon Trophy Cup NRA SSUSA.org

Palma Trophy Facts Team Match National Camp Perry Tiffany'sThe Palma Team Trophy
Originally named the Centennial Trophy, in honor of the Centennial celebration of the independence of the United States of America, the Palma Trophy was commissioned from Tiffany’s at a cost of $1,500. The trophy was a full-sized replica of a Roman Legion standard, executed in bronze with silver and gold inlay. On the banner of the standard was the legend, “In the name of the United States of America to the Riflemen of the world”. Above the banner was an eagle, bearing in its talons a wreath of palm leaves and a plaque on which was the single word, “PALMA”, the Latin word for palm tree, which was used by the Romans to signify victory, or the ultimate in excellence.

Because the word Palma was so easily seen, the trophy soon became known as the “Palma Trophy”, and by 1878 was referred to officially by that name. The original seven and one-half foot trophy is now lost, having not been seen since at least 1954. Serving in its place is a copy which was commissioned by Dr. Herbert M. Aitken of Eau Claire, WI. The copy was made from the original Tiffany blue-prints at a cost of $32,500. Dr. Aitken has given this copy of the Palma Trophy to the NRA for use in the Palma Match. The trophy is retained by the winning team until the next Palma Match.

In 2008, the Palma Trophy was returned to the NRA, and it was decided that the trophy, once refurbished, will travel to the host nation for the match every four years, then returned to the NRA for safekeeping.

The first competition for the Palma Team was a challenge match for which the British Commonwealth nations were invited. The match was fired in 1876 at the old Creedmoor Range on Long Island as part of the Centennial celebration of the United States. Teams representing Scotland, Ireland, Canada, Australia, and the United States took part. The match is currently fired on a four-year interval.

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January 1st, 2022

Free Targets for Shooting Fun in 2022

shooting paper printable fly flies target

Today marks a New Year — 2022. The difficult year of 2021 is history now. Let’s all hope things get better in 2022. One should start a new year with a positive spirit. With that in mind, here are six “fun and games” targets. While each requires good conventional marksmanship skills — hitting a small aiming point — there are other strategies involved, such as playing darts or hitting the right combination of poker cards. Most of us started shooting as kids, just plinking for fun. Here’s an opportunity to be like a kid again — to spend a day at the range just having fun with friends and family members.

NSSF Billiards Table Target

shooting paper printable billiard cue ball stripes solids target

NSSF Free Fun targetsThis Billiards Table Target offers 15 brightly-colored numbered balls with the cue ball at the bottom. Aim for the numbers, shooting 1-15 in sequence, or alternate between stripes and solids. You can also draw an “X” on the white cue ball (or attach a paster), and use that to set your zero. This target is fun for shooting outdoors with rifles at 50 or 100 yards or indoors with pistols.

This billiards target is part of a set of 12 Fun Targets from the NSSF. These were issued a couple seasons back for National Shooting Sports Month, held in August of each year. The other free targets include Golf Links, Bowling Pins, Fireworks, Baseball Diamond, Dutch Windmill, Water Balloons, Light Bulbs, Dartboard, and three Bullseye targets.

Dartboard Target with Colored Rings

shooting paper printable dartboard shooting target

This printable Dartboard Shooting Target has the numbers inside the outer dartboard ring to allow a larger target. With this target you can shoot for the center bull, or actually play pub-style dart games, aiming for numbers and particular rings. If you don’t know how to play traditional dart games, visit NiceDarts.com for complete darts rules. One popular game is “Around The World”. The object is to hit the numbered zones, starting with number 1. Then you try for 2, 3, and so on. After hitting all the numbers 1 through 20, then hit the bullseye to win. CLICK HERE for Other Dart Board Color combinations.

Poker Target — Get the Best Hand

Dots Target

Poker players will enjoy this target. With this playing card-themed poker cards target, each shooter takes five shots and the one with the highest hand wins. You can also shoot for four-of-a-kind, against the clock, fastest four (without a mistake) wins.

Slot Machine Jackpot Target

Slot machine jackpot free shooting target

Enjoy a little Las Vegas-style fun on your next trip to the range. This cool Slot Machine Target has four sets of slot machine patterns each with three rows of three symbols. Connect three in a row to win — and hit the Jackpot! This is one of many colorful, free targets available from Targetz.com.

Flies in Circles Target

shooting paper printable fly flies target

Now you can boast to your buddies that you hit a fly on your target — 16 times. On this target, 16 flies with bright red eyes are arranged in a inside circles, 16 to a page. There are various ways to use the fly targets. Some shoot to hit the head only — so aim for those red eyes. There are 11 other variations of this Fly Target available on the Targets.WS website.

Tic-Tac-Toe Fun Game Target

shooting paper printable fly flies target

This Tic-Tac-Toe Shooting Game Target lets you challenge your shooting buddies at the range. One player can shoot the red triangles, while the other shoots the white zones, taking turns. You proceed just like a regular Tic-Tac-Toe game, alternating shots, with the goal of getting three of the same color in a row. This is a fun game for a parent and a young family member. You’ll find other fun targets on Targets4free.com.

Special BONUS — AccurateShooter.com Load Development Target

FREE Accuracy Precision Rifle Shooting Target
Right-Click target image to download printable PDF.

Our Load Development Target has been used by tens of thousands of shooters. It has proven very popular, since all your load data fits neatly in the boxes under each target. In fact this target is being employed by both rifle-makers (Bergara) and barrel-makers (including Criterion) to test their products. The target was designed for aiming efficiency. The red diamonds have 1/2″ sides and you can align your cross-hairs on the horizontal and vertical lines. It is a clean design that is easy to see even at 200 yards with a 20X scope. NOTE: When we test, we usually crank in a little elevation, setting the point-of-impact higher, so our shots fall in the gray circles. That way you leave the red diamonds intact for precise aiming.

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December 30th, 2021

Learn to Win with Lanny Bassham’s Mental Management System

Winning in Mind lanny Bassham marksmanship motivation book

Winning in Mind Bassham bookF-Class ace Erik Cortina recently interviewed noted author and Olympic Gold Medal-winning shooter Lanny Bassham. For his popular video channel, Erik asked Lanny about his book With Winning in Mind. The two talented shooters also broadly discussed the “mental game” in the shooting sports and Lanny’s program for visualization of a winning performance. Lanny explains that after you have mastered your rifle skills, and learned to read the wind, it is important to adopt a winning mentality and to visualize success. Lanny should know. He won a shooting Gold Medal in the Olympics along with 22 world individual and team titles.

Watch Full Video Interview
Here is the wide-ranging and fascinating hour-long Lanny Bassham interview hosted by Erik Cortina. If you are looking to enhance your motivation, discipline, and “mental focus” when competing, this video is worth watching:

With Winning in Mind — About the Book

With Winning in Mind (3d. Edition)
by Lanny Bassham, $9.99 (Kindle), $16.95 (Softcover)

Visualization is a process of mental preparation that is done before you get to the range. Many of the greatest shooting champions have used this technique to get ready for big matches, and to optimize their performance during record fire. If you want to enhance your “mental game” through pre-match visualization, we strongly recommend Lanny Bassham’s book, With Winning in Mind.

As a competitive smallbore 3P shooter, Bassham developed a mental management system. Using this system, Lanny Bassham won 22 world individual and team titles, set four world records, and captured an Olympic Gold Medal in Montreal in 1976. His techniques have been embraced by professional and Olympic athletes in many sports. With Winning in Mind covers a complete system of “mental management” techniques used by Olympians and elite champions.

Putting principles into practice — Anette Wachter

Anette Wachter Mental Game VisualizationOur friend Anette Wachter, aka “30CalGal”, did a series of videos for the NRAWomen.com site. In one episode, Anette talks about the “mental game” in competition. Specifically she explains how to “visualize success”:

I have found that a lot of my success in competition has come through what I call a ‘mental rehearsal’. I actually visualize every stage of the match and I visualize the success of the match and winning the match.

I actually visualize that round going downrange into the target, and the target coming up with a dead-center ‘X’. I visualize this over and over. If you visualize success you will achieve success.

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December 30th, 2021

Top Lady Shooters Offer Smart Safety and Marksmanship Advice

Lady Shooter advice NRABlog.com Tiffany Piper Julie Golob
Photo courtesy NRAFamily.org.

The NRABlog has interviewed seven prominent lady shooters, asking them for tips for other lady shooting sports enthusiasts, particularly new shooters. Top female competitors such as 2016 Bianchi Cup Winner Tiffany Piper and Team S&W Co-Captain Julie Golob offer good advice on competitive shooting as well as using firearms for self-defense. Read the full article here.

Here Are Some of the Top Tips from Leading Ladies:

Tiffany Piper (Action Pistol): The best piece of advice I would give is practice makes perfect. In New Zealand, we barely get enough range time with our noise restrictions so muscle memory and technique are key.muscle memory and technique are key. Study up on shooting techniques, watch YouTube videos of other professional women shooters, and try out what you see. Don’t get intimidated thinking it’s a male’s sport[.]”

Lady Shooter advice NRABlog.com Tiffany Piper Julie Golob

Julie Golob (Team S&W, 3-Gun and Pistol): “If something isn’t clear, just ask about it! Shooters are some of the best people you’ll ever meet, but we can be confusing and use a lot of shooter slang and lingo. When in doubt, ask!”

Tori Nonaka (Team Glock): “I always recommend to new shooters to first concentrate on the basics of gun safety. That way they will be more comfortable when they next learn about the particular gun…. Their confidence will grow as they familiarize themselves with their specific weapon. Then, it’s all about practice at the range.”

Corey Cogdell (Olympic Trap Shooter): “It’s empowering for women to know how to use a firearm in a sporting atmosphere as well as for self-defense. So if you are new to firearms, check out your local gun club and take a lesson! There you’ll find instructors and other shooting sports enthusiasts who will be more than willing to help you.”

Lady Shooter advice NRABlog.com Tiffany Piper Julie Golob

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December 28th, 2021

Determine Your Dominant Eye with This Simple Test

6.5 Creedmoor Annealing

Shooting Sports USA Eye dominanceDo you know which one of your eyes is dominant? It’s easy to determine eye dominance with a simple exercise. Pick an object about 6-10 feet away (a light switch or door knob works well). Make an “OK” sign with your right hand (see photo) and hold that about 18″ from your face. Now, with both eyes open, look through the circle formed by your thumb and index finger. Center the circle on the object, so you can see the object in the middle.

Now, here’s the important part — while still holding your hand up, centered on the object, first close your right eye. If you don’t see the object anymore, then your right eye is dominant. If you still see the object, then repeat the procedure with the left eye shut and right eye open. If you don’t see the object when your left eye (only) is closed, then you are left-eye dominant.

6.5 Creedmoor AnnealingThe digital archives of Shooting Sports USA contain many interesting articles. A while back, Shooting Sports USA featured a “must-read” expert Symposium on Eye Dominance, as it affects both rifle and pistol shooting. No matter whether you have normal dominance (i.e. your dominant eye is on the same side as your dominant hand), or if you have cross-dominance, you’ll benefit by reading this excellent article. The physiology and science of eye dominance is explained by Dr. Norman Wong, a noted optometrist. In addition, expert advice is provided by champion shooters such as David Tubb, Lones Wigger, Dennis DeMille, Julie Golob, Jessie Harrison, and Phil Hemphill.

Top Rifle Champions Talk About Eye Dominance:

David Tubb — 11-Time National High Power Champion
I keep both eyes open, always. Some use an opaque blinder in rifle or shotgun shooting. If you close your non-dominant eye, you will not get as good a sight picture. If your aiming eye is not your dominant eye, you have even more of a problem to overcome.

Lones Wigger — World, National and Olympic Champion Rifleman
Shooters should try to use the dominant eye unless the vision is impaired and the non-dominant eye has better vision. You should always shoot with both eyes open since this will allow the shooting eye to function properly.

Dennis DeMille — National Service Rifle Champion
I close my non-shooting eye initially. Once I pick up my sight picture, it’s not something I focus on. For those that use a patch, I recommend that they use something white to block their view, rather than cover the eye.

Bruce Piatt — 2015 World Shooting Championship Winner
Some shooters, especially those with nearly equal or cross-dominance, will naturally find themselves squinting one eye. When anyone does this, you are also closing your dominant eye to some extent and adding stress to your face.

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December 21st, 2021

Position Shooting Fundamentals — Good Article by Gary Anderson

rimfire sporter position shooting Gary Anderson

Want to learn the basics of position shooting? Then you should check out an article by Gary Anderson, DCM Emeritus, in On the Mark digital magazine (Summer 2014, pp. 6-13). This article covers all the key elements: body position (prone, sitting, standing), sling use/adjustment, sight picture, aiming process, and trigger control. While this 8-page article was specifically written for Rimfire Sporter shooters, the techniques described by Anderson apply to all types of position shooting, whether you shoot air rifles, smallbore rifles, or centerfire rifles.

CLICK HERE for Position Shooting Article in On The Mark Magazine
NOTE: This is a large PDF Document — it may take some time to fully load. Scroll to page 6-13.

Here’s what Anderson says about aiming — how to keep your sights steady and get them centered on the middle of the target:

Trigger Contact and Center
rimfire sporter position shooting Gary AndersonAs soon as aiming at the target begins, the index finger must move from the trigger-guard to contact the trigger. It is important to get initial pressure on the trigger as soon as aiming begins. Then the shooter must focus on the sight picture and centering the sight picture movements over the aiming point. No one, not even champion shooters, can hold the aligned sights perfectly still. The sights are going to move a little bit or a lot, depending on the shooter’s skill level. The secret is to center those sight picture movements over the aiming point on the target (see trace illustration) before pulling the trigger.

When the sight picture movements on the target are centered, the last step in firing the shot is to add… smooth pressure on the trigger until the shot breaks.

Anderson also discusses the 5 Basics of Shot Technique:

rimfire sporter position shooting Gary Anderson

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December 19th, 2021

Sunday GunDay: Flashy Chassis Showcase — Aluminum Wonders

1000-yard heavy gun chassis by Bruce Baer

For today’s Sunday GunDay story we showcase seven interesting metal-chassis rifles. While we love the look and feel of wood and fiberglass, metal does have its advantages. It can be crafted very straight and true, and the designs can achieve a very low center-of-gravity without sacrificing rigidity. In addition, a precisioned machined metal chassis tends to track extremely well.

Massive IBS Heavy Gun Milled from Solid Aluminum Billet

1000-yard heavy gun chassis by Bruce Baer

This remarkable 70-lb IBS Heavy Gun, was machined from solid aluminum billet, by Bruce Baer. It rests on a G&G Alvey rest split in the middle to comply with rules. This “heavy metal” CNC-machined wonder is a work of art designed for the 1000-yard game in the Heavy Gun class. Wood stocks, and to a lesser extent fiberglass stocks, are more forgiving, offering greater damping and recoil absorption. However, metal stocks offer superior rigidity, and the CNC machining allows tracking surfaces to be perfectly parallel.

Williamsport limits Heavy Guns to 100 pounds. Under IBS and NBRSA rules weight is unlimited. You will see a few massive 200-lb behemoths at IBS matches, but most competitors find that something in the 60-90 pound range works best. Bruce Baer explains, “You can’t stop a gun from recoiling. If it doesn’t recoil it will jump. If it jumps you might as well go home because you won’t shoot a good group. So it is pointless to try to build a gun so heavy as to eliminate all recoil. The more you restrict the rifle’s recoil the more temperamental that rifle will be. The 200-pounders just don’t out-perform something in the 60- to 80-pound range, and I think the optimal weight is 60-70 pounds.”

Bruce Baer likes the 70-lb overall weight for a heavy gun: “Extreme mass is not necessarily an advantage. Watch a locomotive starting up from zero–it will vibrate from one end to another. If the gun is too heavy I think it will vibrate at the start of recoil and that will kill accuracy. I want the gun to start from recoil with very little effort so it will be smooth from start to stop.”

Water-Cooled World Record-Setting Wondergun

joel pendergraft

We like “outside of the box” thinking. And in the world of competitive shooting, it can’t get more unconventional than this. But this radical liquid-cooled benchrest rig wasn’t just a crazy experiment — it actually delivered the goods. This IBS Heavy Gun, built by Joel Pendergraft, produced a superb 10-shot, 3.044″ group that stood as an International Benchrest Shooters (IBS) 1000-Yard Heavy Gun record for seven years, not being broken until 2016.

Joel Pendergraft

Using this water-cooled wondergun, Joel shot the record-breaking group in April 2009 at Hawks Ridge, NC. This monster features a .30-Caliber 12-twist, 4-groove Krieger barrel inside a water-filled sleeve (like on a liquid-cooled machine gun). Joel shot BIB 187gr flat-based bullets in Norma brass, pushed by a “generous amount” of Alliant Reloder 25 and Federal 210M primers. The cartridge was a big custom wildcat Joel listed as “.300 Ackley Improved”.

Pendergraft’s 3.044″ 10-shot group was a great feat, breaking one of the longest-standing, 1000-yard IBS World Records. And Joel’s 3.044″ record stood for 7 years!

Richard King’s Radical .223 Rem F-TR Skeleton Rifle

Richard King .223 Rem F-Class rig

Here’s something exotic from our Gun of the Week archives. We like this rig because it is so radical (we doubt that you have ever seen anything quite like it). Gun-builder Richard King calls this his “Texas-T”, noting that “this is my personal gun, built the way I wanted it. I know it’s radical and some may not care for it. But it works.” The rig was designed to shoot F-TR, but it can also be converted easily to shoot F-Open with a front rest.

Richard reports: “This is pretty much an all-aluminum rifle. The action is a Kelbly F-Class with a Shilen stainless steel competition trigger. The scope is a 1″-tube Leupold 36X with a Tucker Conversion set in Jewell spherical bearing rings. The .223 barrel is 30″ Pac-Nor 3-groove, 1:6.5″-twist mounted in a V-type barrel block. The bipod has vertical adjustment only via a dovetail slide activated by a stick handle. It works like a joy-stick, but for vertical only. I adjust for windage by moving the rear sandbag.”

Richard likes how the barrel block works: “With the barrel block forward, the vibrations should be at a low frequency. Instead of one long rod whipping, I now have two short rods (barrel halves) being dampened. This is my fourth barrel block gun. They work, but so does a good pillar-bedded action. [This rifle] is designed for my style of shooting. It is not meant to be a universal ‘fit all’ for the general public. However, I will say the design is adaptable. I can easily convert the system to run in F-Open Class. I would drop a big-bore barreled action into the V-block, slide on a heavier pre-zeroed scope and rings, add plates on the sides up front to bring the width to 3″, and maybe a recoil pad.”

F1 F-Open Chassis from Competition Machine

Eliseo competition machine F1 Aluminum F-Open Chassis

Along with his famed tube-guns, Gary Eliseo of Competition Machine has designed a modern, low-profile chassis system for F-Open competition. Assembled with Cerakoted aluminum beams, these F1 F-Open chassis systems offer great tracking with an ultra-low center of gravity.

Eliseo competition machine F1 Aluminum F-Open Chassis
Here is the F1 Chassis with “Marine Corps Red” powder coat finish. Read Full Report.

This F1 aluminum alloy chassis stock features a super-low center of gravity, plus adjustable length of pull, cheek rest, and drop. The stock is available in a wide choice of Cerakote finishes. The current Model F1 chassis features a action block mounting system to fit most actions. There was also an earlier version that had a free-floated action with the barrel in a barrel block, secured with epoxy. Both F1 versions (action block and barrel block) shot great, with excellent performances in competition.

Gen 1 F1 F-Open Chassis System with Barrel Block
Eliseo competition machine F1 Aluminum F-Open Chassis

State Championship Win with Home-Built Aluminum Stock

While most of the stocks featured above were crafted by professionals, the properties of aluminum allow it to be used by persons with some basic mechanical skills and metal-working tools. Here’s proof. Back in 2009, Forum Member John Dunbar (aka JD12) crafted his own aluminum F-Open stock. And he used that impressive metal stock to win the Wisconsin State F-Class championship. READ Full Story.

savage f-open aluminum stock

The stock for John’s “home-built” .284 Winchester was mated with a Savage target action. John designed and fabricated the aluminum stock himself. It features a central barrel block clamping a 32″ Brux barrel. Get this — John completed the rifle only 5 days before the match: “I finished machining/assembly on Monday night, did load workup Wednesday and Thursday nights, loaded rounds Friday night, and headed to Lodi at 4:30 on Saturday morning.” John even made his own co-axial front rest (see below)

John Dunbar

When Fiberglass Fails, Aluminum Stock Saves the Day

Australian Mark Fairbairn performed a “Quick Fix” during the 2018 Berger SW Nationals. Mark’s F-Open rifle, in a conventional fiberglass stock, was giving him random vertical during one yardage: “I had a bit of a problem with elevation — the stock was hitting somewhere [causing vertical]. I was X-X-X then a shot popped up in the 9 ring with no good reason. So I figured I better put a new stock on it. I got my old aluminium stock I brought from Australia and quickly adjusted it to fit on the Stolle.”

aluminum stock

Right on the firing line berm Mark swapped his barreled action into the metal stock of his own design. The clock was ticking… but the story had a happy ending. For the next yardage Mark shot a brilliant 150-7X, not dropping a point. So the “Quick Fix” did the trick. As they say Down Under — “Good on Ya, Mate!”

Home-Built Aluminum Chassis with Innovative A-Arm Bipod

Here is another home-built rig featuring an aluminum chassis mated to a Savage barreled action via a forward-mounted barrel block. This rig was crafted by Forum member Patrick Lundy, who followed the maxim: “If you can’t buy it, then build it.”

Lundy aluminum f-class rifle

Patrick Lundy was so impressed with a fellow shooter’s barrel-block rifle, that he build a similar match gun himself, complete with barrel block and aluminum chassis. Patrick was inspired by a metal stock belonging to Peter Gagne. But he added his own custom touches, including an innovative “A-Arm”-design bipod for shooting in F-TR class. The gun has been very successful in competition. READ FULL Report

Pat told us: “This new stock was a milestone in my shooting career — it was my very first attempt to build a stock. I wasn’t much of a wood worker but I did have a talent for building with metal. The stock was fabricated from 6061 T6 aluminum. With this gun I was able to shoot from a rest or a bipod.”

Lundy aluminum f-class rifle

Pat crafted the bipod from aluminum tubing: “The bipod was a very rigid A-frame design with welded aluminum tubing. I added slippery feet under the pod skis to facilitate smoother recoil. I realized that a wide-stance bipod had to recoil the same on both sides or the group would string horizontally.” Here is the innovative “A-Arm” bipod that Pat Lundy built for his rifle.

aluminum rifle bipod A-Arm homebuilt

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December 19th, 2021

How to Read the Wind — Expert Tips from Emil Praslick III

Berger Bullets Applied Ballistics Wind Reading Zero direction speed windy

Emil Praslick III is widely recognized as one of the greatest wind wizards on the planet — a master at identifying wind value and direction, and predicting wind cycles. As coach of the USAMU and top civilian teams, Emil has helped win many high-level championships. In the three videos we feature today, Emil, who works with Capstone Precision Group (Berger, Lapua, SK, Vihtavuori) and Team Applied Ballistics, explains how to determine wind direction and velocity using a variety of indicators. Praslick, now retired from the U.S. Army, was an 18-time National and 2-time World Champion coach with the USAMU.

Video ONE: Wind Theory Basics — Understanding “Wind Values”

In this video from UltimateReloader.com, Emil explains the basics of modern wind theory. To properly understand the effect of the wind you need to know both the velocity of the wind and its angle. The combination of those variables translates to the wind value. Emil also explains that the wind value may not be constant — it can cycle both in speed and velocity. Emil also explains some of the environmental conditions such as mirage that can reveal wind conditions.

Emil Praslick III Berger SWN Wind calling reading

Video TWO: Determining the Direction of the Wind

Key Point in Video — Find the Boil
Emil explains how to determine wind direction using optic. The method is to use spotting scope, riflescope, or binoculars to look for the “Boil” — the condition in mirage when the light waves rising straight up. The wind will generate that straight-up, vertical boil in your optics when it is blowing directly at you, or directly from your rear. To identify this, traverse your scope or optics until you see the boil running straight up. When you see that vertical boil, the direction your optic is pointing is aligned with the wind flow (either blowing towards you or from directly behind you).

Video THREE: The No Wind Zero Setting

In this second video, Emil defines the “No-Wind Zero”, and explains why competitive shooters must understand the no-wind zero and have their sights or optics set for a no-wind zero starting point before heading to a match. In order to hit your target, after determining wind speed and direction, says Emil, “you have to have your scope setting dialed to ‘no wind zero’ first.”

Emil Praslick III KO2M

Coach of Champions — Emil Praslick III
SFC Emil Praslick III, (U.S. Army, retired) works with Berger Bullets and Applied Ballistics. Emil served as the Head Coach of the U.S. National Long Range Rifle Team and Head Coach of the USAMU for several years. Teams coached by Emil have won 33 Inter-Service Rifle Championships. On top of that, teams he coached set 18 National records and 2 World Records. Overall, in the role of coach, Praslick can be credited with the most team wins of any coach in U.S. Military history.

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December 15th, 2021

Young Katrina Demerle Wins 4th Straight Anderson Invitational

Teen four peat GAI Gary Anderson Invitational air rifle match Katrina winnner

Katrina Demerle, 17, of Hamilton, Ohio, is a living legend of the Civilian Marksmanship Program’s (CMP) Gary Anderson Invitational. Katrina has now claimed four straight overall wins in the junior air rifle event in 2018, 2019, 2020, and 2021. That’s four straight titles for the talented Katrina. And she could make it five in 2022: “I will be back to try to win again next year!”.

Teen four peat GAI Gary Anderson Invitational air rifle match Katrina winnner

Over 340 athletes competed in the 2021 match, held annually at the 80-point electronic air gun ranges at the CMP Competition Centers at Camp Perry, Ohio and Anniston, Alabama. This is a three-position (3P) match with shooters firing from prone, standing. and kneeling positions.

Teen four peat GAI Gary Anderson Invitational air rifle match Katrina winnner

Last year, Demerle fired a national Precision Individual 3×20 plus Final record score of 701.4 using her Pardini GPR1. Shooting 700.6 overall this year with the same Pardini air rifle (which she named “Giorgio”), Katrina took top spot in the precision category. “There was a little bit of added pressure [this year] since I wanted to have another consecutive win and also wanted to beat my national record from last year.”

Competing in nearly 400 matches since 2014, the talented young athlete is a member of the USA Shooting National Junior Team for both international and three-position air rifle. Before the GAI, she had already recorded a memorable year — earning second at the Junior Olympic 3P National Championships and the overall top score at the CMP 3P National Championships, becoming the overall winner at the Junior World Championship in Lima, Peru, and winning the Junior Air Rifle National Championship in international air rifle. And the talented Ms. Eberle currently holds six national records in total.

Katrinia has nicknamed her Pardini GPR1 Air Rifle “Georgio”:
Teen three peat GAI Gary Anderson Invitational air rifle match Katrina winnner
CLICK HERE for large Pardini GPR1 photo.

Finishing second behind Demerle in the precision individual competition was Isabella Baldwin, 17, of Nashville, Tennessee, with a score of 697.8. Gracie Dinh, 15, of Starkville, Mississippi, fired 693.9 for third.

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December 14th, 2021

GAP Grind 2021 on Shooting USA This Week

GAP Grind 2020 Shooting USA Scoutten TV

This week, Shooting USA TV spotlights the 2021 GAP Grind, the largest PRS Pro-Am Tactical match with nearly 400 competitors. The 2021 GAP Grind/Bushnell Pro/Am took place in October at the K&M Precision Shooting Complex in Finger, Tennessee. The 3-day event, the biggest PRS match of the year, included professional and “amateur” classes with both individual and team competition. Here are highlights from the 2021 event in this Area419-produced video:

GAP Grind 2021 in Tennessee:

SHOW TIMES: This Shooting USA Episode airs Wednesday, December 15, 2021 at 9:00 PM Eastern and Pacific; 8:00 PM Central. If you miss the regular broadcast, you can stream the show at any time on Vimeo for $0.99 per episode.

The GAP Grind is held at the impressive K&M Shooting Complex in Tennessee:

Lots of Action, with 20+ Stages
The GAP Grind is a challenging, “high tempo” match with minimal down-time between stages. Over the course of 20+ stages, competitors will fire 200+ shots at a variety of steel, paper, moving, and reactive targets out to 1,200 yards. Targets vary in size/difficulty based on the shooter’s position, distance, and time allotted. Most stages include “stressors” — i.e. time limits or required movement(s).

GAP Grind 2020 Shooting USA Scoutten TV

The GAP Grind typically attracts over 300 competitors — half experienced shooters and the other half newcomers to the sport. The key to growing the shooting sports is attracting new shooters. The best way to bring in “new blood” seems to be the Pro-Am type format. At the GAP Grind, experienced shooters share their knowledge and guide the new shooters through the competition.

GAP Grind 2020

Great video shows K&M Complex — overhead and action shots — Click II pause to halt:

GAP Grind 2020 Shooting USA Scoutten TV

GAP Grind Hardware

You’ll find the latest and greatest PRS hardware at the GAP Grind. Notable in 2021 was the fact that many top competitors “stepped down” from the 6.5/6mm Creedmoor to the smaller, more efficient 6mm Dasher, 6BRA and other 6mm cartridges. The Dasher offers excellent accuracy with less recoil than the 6.5 Creedmoor. Also, many top shooters are now running Kahles optics and we predict will be running the new Zeiss FFP scopes in 2022. Photo by Shelley Giddings.

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December 10th, 2021

Good Handgun Marksmanship Video Series from SIG Sauer

Shooter's Edge handgun training Sig Sauer Academy

Do you know someone who recently purchased his/her first handgun and is getting started in the shooting sports? Or do you need to brush up your own pistol skills? Then check out a new FREE video training series from the SIG Sauer Academy: Shooter’s Edge — Learning to Shoot.

Here is the Second Video from the Shooter’ Edge series, covering Basic Rules of Firearms Safety:

This video series features foundational handgun classes at the SIG Sauer Academy in New Hampshire. The ten-episode series takes viewers into the classroom and onto the range as the instructors walk through the fundamentals of handgun safety, shooting techniques, practice and training exercises, along with instruction in equipment options and handgun selection. The series was shot on location during several of the Academy’s introductory classes.

Click Below to Access Full Video Series on SigSauer.com:

Shooter's Edge handgun training Sig Sauer Academy

The Shooter’ Edge Series includes the following episodes: Learn to Shoot at SIG Sauer Academy; Basic Rules of Safety; Types of Handguns and Ammunition; Foundational Shooting Techniques; How to Practice and Train Effectively; Choosing the Right Gun; Equipment and Its Purpose; Holsters — Presentation and Recovery; Magazines — Loading and Unloading; and What Happens After Learning to Shoot.

The entire 10-episode series is available on the SIG Sauer Academy YouTube Channel and the SIG Sauer Academy Website.

Shooter's Edge handgun training Sig Sauer Academy

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December 5th, 2021

Sunday Gunday: Let Santa Bring You a CMP M1 Garand

CMP marksmanship program M1 Garand store order rifle vintage .30-06

We think every serious vintage rifle collector should acquire an M1 Garand at some point. If you ordered from the CMP this fall, perhaps you may find an historic M1 Garand under your Christmas tree this year. The CMP has, in the past couple of years, received over 90,000 Garands from overseas arsenals, so there are plenty to be had currently. This article explains how to order an M1 Garand from the CMP, and how to select the right grade for your needs and budget.

How to Order an M1 Garand from the CMP
To purchase an M1 Garand through the CMP, you must be an adult U.S. Citizen, and a member of an affiliated organization who has participated in a “Marksmanship Activity”. This basically means you need to join a gun club and participate in a clinic or match. Proof of club membership and citizenship is mandatory for all ages. However, the marksmanship requirement is waived for those over 60 years of age. Garands must be ordered by mail or through official CMP Auctions. CLICK HERE to Start Order.

Garand Turkish Turkey Philippines

CLICK HERE for Garand Ordering Information | CLICK HERE for Eligibility Requirements

CLICK HERE for Garand Grading Information

CMP Civilian Marksmanship Program M1 Garand Christmas Rifle
This handsome M1 Garand was built with a CMP barreled action fitted to an aftermarket figured Walnut stock. That’s not war-worn GI wood.”

Here are two videos that explain the procedure for ordering an M1 Garand from the CMP. Along with mail-order sales, the CMP has brick-and-mortar stores where M1 Garands can be inspected and purchased and then transferred via your FFL (in compliance with state law). The three CMP stores are located in Anniston, Alabama; Talladega, Alabama; and Port Clinton (Camp Perry), Ohio.

CMP marksmanship program M1 Garand store order rifle vintage .30-06

M1 Garand Barreled Actions and Aftermarket Barrels

CMP Civilian Marksmanship Program M1 Garand Christmas Rifle

Along with complete M1 Garand rifles, the CMP also offers barreled actions. This can save you money, and also makes sense if you are looking to create a rifle with high-grade wood, or you want to bed the action for improved accuracy. You can order an M1 Garand barreled action, as well as complete M1 Garand rifles, from the Civilian Marksmanship Program (CMP). The eligibility requirements and ordering process will be the same for a barreled action as for a complete rifle.

If you already have an M1 Garand, but need a new barrel, you can order a pre-chambered Criterion barrel in .30-06 Springfield. Criterion tell us: “This is a direct replacement barrel for the M1 Garand rifle, manufactured to Mil-spec print #6535448. It has the original G.I. contour and Parkerized finish. Receiver threads are timed, all milling cuts are made, and all M1 Garand barrels are hand-lapped.” NOTE: Each barrel is .010 short-chambered and should be headspaced by a qualified gunsmith. These Criterion .30-06 replacement barrels, priced at $259.95, are legal for use in Service Rifle and John C. Garand matches.

m1 Garand Rifle Barrels CMP Criterion

If you want to re-chamber your M1 Garand to .308 Winchester, the CMP eStore sells brand new Criterion-made barrels in .308 Win for $199.95. These authentic-profile barrels are chambered and headspaced within .010″ of finished size, with final fitting to be done by a competent gunsmith. The barrels are also externally Parkerized to match your vintage M1 Garand.

New Criterion M1 Garand (.308 Win) RIFLE Barrel, 4140 Chrome Moly Steel
Item: 065CRI/308 | Price $199.95

How to Maintain the M1 Garand Rifle

Once you have an M1 Garand in your collection, you’ll want to keep it in tip-top condition so it works flawlessly for vintage military matches and fun shooting. Below we’ve linked two good SSUSA articles on M1 Garand maintenance. Following that you’ll find two excellent videos covering M1 Garand Disassembly, Cleaning, and Lubrication. Finally there are links to recommended print manuals for the M1 Garand.

M1 Service and Maintenance
Shooting Sports USA (SSUSA) published an excellent article on Service and Maintenance of M1 Garand Rifles. This offers some smart tricks, such as using smoke from burning masking tape to darken the front sight post. There is also an older SSUSA article that covers basic cleaning and servicing and also explains how to upgrade the performance of your Garands. READ Article HERE.

M1 Garand maintenance procedures

As a resource for Garand owners, SSUSA recommends GarandGear.com: “[At] Garand Gear you’ll find USGI spec parts, tools, gauges, clips and a few Garand accessories. They also have some interesting freebies, most notably a direct analysis of M1 gas port pressures produced by different brands of commercial .30-06 ammunition, showing which ones exceed M2 Ball pressure, as well as the pressures produced by ammo manufactured specifically for the M1 Garand, such as Hornady’s M1 Garand Match and Federal’s American Eagle M1 Garand. Here you’ll also find free, downloadable and printable PDF copies of War Department M1 Garand maintenance manuals TM9-1275 and TM9-1005.”

m1 Garand Rifle Barrels CMP Criterion

M1 Garand Disassembly, Cleaning, and Lubrication

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December 5th, 2021

Ten Great Gun Books — December Book Buyers Guide

Gun firearms books christmas gifts reader guide book resource paperback hardcover

Christmas is just 20 days away. If you are looking for a great gift for a shooting buddy, books have always been popular holiday gifts. Here are some recommended titles that should please the serious shooters and firearms enthusiasts on your shopping list. For shooting clubs, books also make great end-of-season member awards. Most of us would rather have a useful book than one more piece of wood to toss in a box in the closet. Check out these ten titles — for yourself or your shooting buddies.

Here Are TEN BOOKS Recommended for Serious Shooters:

Modern Advancements in LR Shooting, Vol. II
by Bryan Litz, $27.99 (Kindle), $45.95 (Hardcover)

If you’re a serious long-range shooter, consider adding this book to your library. Relying on extensive ballistics testing, Modern Advancements Volume II is a great successor to Volume I that contains some fascinating research results. UK gun writer Laurie Holland notes: “Volume II of the Modern Advancements series is as fascinating as Volume I and if anything even more valuable given a series of ‘mythbusters’ tests including: case fill-ratio, primer flash-hole uniforming, neck tension, annealing, and much more. The work also addresses that perennial discussion of a bullet ‘going to sleep’ and shooting smaller groups (in MOA) at longer distances than 100 yards.” The amount of testing done for this Volume II work, with a staggering amount of rounds sent downrange, makes this book unique among shooting resources. There is a ton of “hard science” in this book — not just opinions.

Nancy Tompkins Long Range book Prone and Long Range Rifle Shooting
by Nancy Tompkins, $45.00, (Hardcover, 2d Edition).

Nancy Tompkins is one of the greatest long-range shooters in American history. She has won five National Long-range Championships. Tompkins’ treatise is a must-read for serious Palma, F-Class, and High Power shooters. The revised Second edition includes F-Class equipment and techniques, and newly updated information. Color pictures. Topics include Mental & Physical training, Reading Wind & Mirage Shooting Fundamentals, International Competition, and Loading for Long Range. Nancy Tompkins is a 4-time winner of the National Long Range Championships, and has won countless other major events. Nancy has been on six Palma Teams (as both a shooter and a coach).

Miller Cunningham Wind Book The Wind Book for Rifle Shooters
by Linda Miller & Keith Cunningham, $14.99 (Kindle), $18.68 (Hardback).

The new, 2020 Edition of The Wind Book was released a few months ago. The updates make this very helpful 144-page book even better. The Wind Book for Rifle Shooters by Linda Miller and Keith Cunningham, first published in 2007, is a very informative resource. But you don’t have to take our word for it. If you click this link, you can read book excerpts on Amazon.com. This lets you preview the first few chapters, and see some illustrations. Other books cover wind reading in a broader discussion of ballistics or long-range shooting. But the Miller & Cunningham book is ALL about wind reading from cover to cover, and that is its strength. The book focuses on real world skills that can help you accurately gauge wind angle, wind velocity, and wind cycles. Readers have praised the book, earning it 93% 4- and 5-star reviews on Amazon.

Tony Boyer Book rifle accuracy benchrest Long Range Shooting Handbook
by Ryan Cleckner, $9.99 (Kindle), $23.22 (Softcover),

Ryan Cleckner is noted for his ability to explain complex topics in an easy-to-comprehend manner. Now Cleckner has authored a book, the Long Range Shooting Handbook, which expands on the topics covered in Cleckner’s popular NSSF video series. The Long Range Shooting Handbook is divided into three main categories: What It Is/How It Works, Fundamentals, and How to Use It. “What It Is/How It Works” covers equipment, terminology, and basic principles. “Fundamentals” covers the theory of long range shooting. “How to Use It” gives practical advice on implementing what you’ve learned, so you can progress as a skilled, long range shooter. You can view Sample Chapters from Ryan’s Book on Amazon.com.

Winning in Mind Bassham book With Winning in Mind (3d. Edition)
by Lanny Bassham, $9.99 (Kindle), $16.95 (Softcover)

Visualization is a process of mental preparation that is done before you get to the range. Many of the greatest shooting champions have used this technique to get ready for big matches, and to optimize their performance during record fire. If you want to enhance your “mental game” through pre-match visualization, we strongly recommend Lanny Bassham’s book, With Winning in Mind. As a competitive smallbore 3P shooter, Bassham developed a mental management system. Using this system, Lanny Bassham won 22 world individual and team titles, set four world records, and captured an Olympic Gold Medal in Montreal in 1976. His techniques have been embraced by professional and Olympic athletes in many sports. With Winning in Mind covers a complete system of “mental management” techniques used by Olympians and elite champions.

Practical Shooter’s Guide
by Marcus Blanchard, $9.99 (Kindle), $19.99 (Softcover)

Thinking of getting started in the Practical/Tactical shooting game? Looking for ways to be more stable when shooting from unconventional positions? Then you may want to read Marcus Blanchard’s Practical Shooter’s Guide (A How-To Approach for Unconventional Firing Positions and Training). Unlike almost every “how to shoot” book on the market, Blanchard’s work focuses on the shooting skills and positions you need to succeed in PRS matches and similar tactical competitions. Blanchard provides clear advice on shooting from barricades, from roof-tops, from steep angles. Blanchard says you need to train for these types of challenges: “I believe the largest factor in the improvement of the average shooter isn’t necessarily the gear; it’s the way the shooter approaches obstacles and how they properly train for them.”

Tony Boyer Book rifle accuracy benchrest The Book of Rifle Accuracy
by Tony Boyer, $42.50 (Hardcover).

Tony Boyer, the most successful shooter in the history of short-range benchrest competition, shares match-winning tips in this 323-page book. The book covers all aspect of the benchrest discipline: loading, windflags, rest set-up, addressing the rifle, and match strategies. This is a high-quality publication, filled with valuable insights. Every serious benchrest shooter should read Tony’s book. Boyer has dominated registered benchrest in a fashion that will never be duplicated, having amassed 142 U.S. Benchrest Hall of Fame points. The next closest shooter, Allie Euber, has 47 Hall of Fame points. This handsome, full-color book is 323 pages long, with color photos or color illustrations on nearly every page.

David Tubb High Power Rifle The Rifle Shooter
by G. David Tubb, $15.00 (On Sale Now)(Softcover)

This book by 11-time National High Power Champion David Tubb focuses on position shooting and High Power disciplines. Section One covers fundamentals: position points, natural point of aim, breathing, triggering mechanics and follow-through, sling selection and use, getting started, getting better, avoiding obstacles. Section Two covers mechanics of offhand, sitting, and prone positions. Section Three covers shooting skills, including wind reading and mental preparation. Section Four covers the technical side of shooting, with extensive discussions of rifle design, load development, reloading barrel maintenance, and rifle fitting. We consider this book a “must-read” for any sling shooter, and there is plenty of good advice for F-Class shooters too.

Cartridges of World 16th Edition Coaching Young Rifle Shooters
by Gary Anderson, $20.95 (Softcover)

Gary Anderson’s book, Coaching Young Rifle Shooters, is an excellent, fully-illustrated guide for training young shooters. This 187-page, full-color book is the most comprehensive instructional guide of its kind now in print. Anderson created this resource for coaches and parents who work with beginning and intermediate junior rifle shooters. Anderson’s guidebook provides coaches with the tools needed to develop young shooters and improve their marksmanship skills. Gary Anderson is the Director of Civilian Marksmanship (DCM) Emeritus. In his 11 years of international competition, Gary won two Olympic gold medals, seven World Championships, and 16 national titles.

Bullseye Midnd Raymond Prior Creedmoor Sports Bullseye Mind
(Mental Toughness for Sport Shooting)
by Dr. Raymond Prior, $15.95 (On Sale now) (Softcover).

Having a Bullseye Mind means thinking in ways that create confidence and consistency, even under pressure. A “must-read” for competitive shooters, Bullseye Mind is a mental training book written specifically for the shooting sports. The book is well-organized, with handy highlighted lists and key “talking points”. Each chapter concludes with examples from a world-class shooters such as: Matt Emmons, 2004 Olympic Gold Medalist; Vincent Hancock, 2-time Olympic Gold Medalist; Jamie Corkish, 2012 Olympic Gold Medalist; Petra Zublasing, 2014 World Champion/ISSF Shooter of the Year; and Nicco Campriani, 2012 Olympic Gold Medalist, 2010 World Champion. This book has earned rave reviews from competitive shooters who found it really helped their “Mental Game”. One recent purchaser states: “This book is as though you had a coach in your back pocket…”

Permalink Competition, Gear Review, Shooting Skills, Tech Tip No Comments »
December 4th, 2021

PRS Ace Austin Orgain Wins Top PRS Honors Two Years in a Row

PRS golden bullet proof research austin orgain winner
Austin Orgain was the top finisher in the 2021 Precision Rifle Series season, winning the Golden Bullet award for the second year in a row, as the Pro Class Open Points Series Champion.

PRS competitor Austin Orgain took home the Precision Rifle Series Pro Series Golden Bullet award for the second year in a row. With his many wins and top 5 performances, Austin is now ranked #1 in the PRS Bolt Gun Series PRO Division. Austin took top Pro Division honors at the PRS Series Finale held Nov. 6-7, 2021 at the NRA Whittington Center in Raton, New Mexico. Some 200 of America’s top PRS shooters competed in the challenging Finale.

PRS golden bullet proof research austin orgain winner
Orgain’s PRS match rifle features a PROOF Research steel competition contour .243 1:7.5″-twist cut-rifled barrel chambered for the 6mm Dasher. Note the left bolt action.

Remarkable Record in PRS in 2020 and 2021
Austin Orgain has shot 61 total PRS matches, of which 47 are Pro Series matches. Orgain’s best Pro Series finish was at the 2021 PRS PRO Series Finale match where he finished first (#1) out of 214 shooters. Orgain has won his last three matches straight, for a fantastic finish to 2021:

Winner: November 6, 2021 — 2021 PRS PRO SERIES FINALE Raton, New Mexico
Winner: September 18, 2021 — BOX CANYON SHOWDOWN AG Qualifier, Medicine Lodge, Kansas
Winner: August 28, 2021 — OKIE SUMMER SHOWDOWN, Ninnekah, Oklahoma

PROOF Research’s cut-rifled barrels are designed for extreme accuracy, performance, and reliability under any environmental condition. Orgain commented, “The consistency and accuracy that I see from PROOF barrel to barrel makes my job so much easier. Break one in, load the same charge, and go hammer.” The Competition Contour barrel and all of PROOF Research’s barrels are single-point, cut-rifled, lead-lapped, and thoroughly inspected at multiple quality-control stations.

About PROOF Research
Headquartered in Columbia Falls, Montana, PROOF Research maintains research and manufacturing centers in Montana and Ohio. PROOF Research has developed next-generation composite materials for carbon fiber barrels, premium hunting rifles, and weapon systems. PROOF Research’s goal is to make reduced weight, durability, and match-grade accuracy a reality.

Proof Research Carbon-wrapped barrel
While Austin Orgain shoots with an all-steel barrel, PROOF Research produces advanced carbon-wrapped barrels offering significant weight savings.

Permalink Competition, Shooting Skills, Tactical No Comments »