After shooting the new Anschutz model 1727 hunter, three simple words came to mind: “I want one”. This slick little rifle was this editor’s favorite new firearm at the 2013 Media Day at the range. At first glance, it’s just a simple hunting rifle with a European-style walnut stock. But a close look reveals something very special. This little sporting rifle, chambered in 17 HMR, features an advanced, straight-pull Fortner action. This is the same action design found on Anschutz’s top of the line $5000+ Biathlon Rifles. This new model 1727 was revealed for the first time in the world at Media Day.
The nickel-plated action is very smooth and easy to operate. You can flick the action open and closed with a quick movement of thumb and fore-finger (or you can use index finger alone). The adjustable trigger is light and smooth — as you would expect on an Anschutz. This trigger is light years ahead of what you’ll find on a typical factory varmint rifle — it’s that good.
While visiting the Anschutz booth at Media Day, we got to meet young Max Anschutz, who represents the sixth generation of rifle makers in the Anschutz family. Max demo’d the new model 1727 for us and then gave a “shout-out” (in both English and German) to fans of his family’s rifles on both sides of the Atlantic. For this editor, it was interesting to meet this young man as I have now interviewed Dieter Anschutz, his son Jochen, and now Dieter’s grandson, Max.
Watch Straight-Pull Anschutz 17HMR Rifle in Video
The new model 1727 should be available in the USA by mid-April. In the video, the Anschutz rep says the rifle would cost “around $2,000.00″. However, it appears he didn’t convert to U.S. currency correctly. Expect the actual price in the USA to be $3800.00 or higher. Initially, the model 1727 will be released in 17 HMR only. However, Anschutz reps stated that, sometime down the road, Anschutz might produce versions of this gun chambered for the 17 Hornet or new 17 Win Super Mag.
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Bryan Litz, author of Applied Ballistics for Long-Range Shooting, told us that Kestrel will unveil a new “Shooter’s Weather Meter” this week at SHOT Show. The brand-new Kestrel Shooter’s Weather Meter will feature Bryan’s sophisticated Applied Ballistics software inside. This allows shooters to calculate very accurate trajectories while measuring up to 15 environmental parameters. This is a big step forward, according to Bryan.
When can you get your hands on one? The new Shooter’s Weather Meter will be available for pre-order for spring 2013 production. [Bryan hosted a demonstration at the Kestrel SHOT Show Booth Thursday at 2:00 pm.]
With integrated Applied Ballistics software, Kestrel users are now able to select from either G1 or G7 ballistic coefficients (BC) when calculating a trajectory. The new Ballistics Kestrel also offers the very extensive “Litz”-measured BC library of over 225 bullets. In addition to these features, users can “train” the software to match a specific rifle based on observed impacts at long range with the ballistics calibration feature. With more accurate BC data, shooters are empowered to make more precise trajectory calculations.
Watch Video about Kestrel Shooters’ Weather Meter with Applied Ballistics Software
New Kestrel Can Communicate with Remote Wind Sensors
The new Kestrel Shooter’s Weather Meter can receive data from wind sensor arrays designed and sold by Applied Ballistics. The use of remote sensors allows actual wind data from various distances down-range to be factored into the ballistics solution. Kestrel says that no other handheld weather meter has offered this kid of multi-array “remote sensing” capability before. Like all Kestrels, the Shooter’s Weather Meter is IP67 waterproof and ruggedized to MIL-STD-810F standards.
Kestrel Weather & Environmental Meters are manufactured by Nielsen-Kellerman, which has produced advanced environmental instruments for more than 15 years. Every Kestrel meter is pocket-sized, rugged, accurate, waterproof, easy-to-use, and backed by an industry-leading five-year warranty.
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Kruger of Germany produces match targets for the ISSF and major World Championships. Kruger’s quality control is second to none. Now officially-licensed NRA targets are available from Kruger Premium Targets in the USA. With elite competitions being decided by thousandths of an inch in shot placement, shouldn’t your club use the best-quality targets available? Kruger targets are made from premium-grade paper to permit precise, reliable measurements. For example, to ensure that target holes do not have irregular edges, Kruger’s NRA Air Rifle and Air Pistol targets are printed on machine-smoothed 210 gram board made from short-fiber materials. Mike Krei, Director of the NRA’s Competitive Shooting Division, has stated: “It is generally accepted that Kruger has the best heavy pulp target paper in the world and that directly relates to the excellent clean bullet holes which are essential for precise scoring.”
Kruger offers the full array of official NRA air rifle, air pistol, international pistol, and smallbore targets. In addition, Kruger sells photo-realistic Animal Targets, plus a cool series of Fun Targets for plinking and informal practice. Kruger targets can be ordered online through www.Kruger-US-Targets.com or you can call Kruger’s USA distributor, MK Tactical, at (503) 746-6816. MK Tactical is located in Hillsborough, OR.
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Carl Zeiss Sports Optics has rolled out its new Conquest HD5 riflescope line. These new HD5 scopes feature five-times (5X) magnification range, 1/4-MOA clicks, lockable turret options, and improved (optional) RAPID-Z® ballistic reticles. Made in Germany, these compact, 1-inch-tube scopes are available in three models: 2-10x42mm, 3-15x42mm, and 5-25x50mm.
Compared to previous Zeiss Conquests, the new HD5 scopes feature more ergonomic turrets, improved magnification rings with finer adjustment, and a lower profile. These scopes all have an adjustable -3 to +2 diopter eyepiece. (We’d like to see all premium scopes offer diopters). All HD5 scopes are covered by the US Lifetime Warranty and 5-Year No-Fault Policy.
Improved, more ergonomic turret design (lockable option).
Enhanced RAPID-Z or Z-Plex ballistic reticles.
Improved rubberized, fine-adjusting power ring.
Conquest HD5 2-10x42mm:
Features: Compact with extremely wide field-of-view in 2-power. The Conquest HD5 2-10×42 is parallax free to 500 yards and is available with either a Z-Plex (#20) reticle (MSRP $889.00) or RAPID-Z 600 (MSRP $972.00) or standard hunting turrets.
Conquest HD5 3-15x42mm:
Features: Trim, low-profile hunting scope with side parallax adjustment. The 3-15×42 weighs just 18.8 ounces, and is 13.8 inches long. Z-Plex reticle is available in either hunting turret or lockable target turret. MSRPs are: $999.00 with Z-Plex hunting turret, $1083.00 with RAPID-Z 600/800, $1,110.0 with Z-Plex and Lockable Target Turret.
Conquest HD5 5-25x50mm:
Features: One of the most compact 5-25X side-parallax scopes on the market. The 5-25×50 is 14 inches long and weighs just 26.6 ounces. Zeiss claims roughly 62 MOA of vertical adjustment and roughly 38 MOA of horizontal travel. Offered with Z-Plex reticle and lockable target turret, RAPID-Z® 800 with hunting turret, Rapid-Z® 1000 with lockable target turret or with a RAPID-Z® Varmint reticle and hunting turret. MSRP is $1111.00 with target turrets, or $1194.00 with RAPID-Z variants.
Mike Jensen, President of Carl Zeiss Sports Optics says the new HD5 scopes offer very high quality at affordable prices: “We are listening to what hunters want and delivering the very best to them at incredibly competitive price points. This new series of 1-inch hunting riflescope will be what all others are measured against.”
Story Tip from EdLongrange. We welcome reader submissions.
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By Danny Reever
Shooters’ notebooks (aka “data books” or “log books”) allow the shooter to record critical shot data and general information. To log data, I’ve seen everything used from simple note cards to huge ledger books and everything in between. I’ve tried many of the commercial logbook offerings as well as some of the military-type sniper data books. Invariably they lack some “mission critical” information pages, while being stuffed with pages that aren’t useful at all. One ends up discarding non-useful pages only to be left with a shortage of really functional pages.
Given the shortcomings of most commercial data books, I resorted to making my own logs using simple spiral notebooks. That was until I discovered Impact Data Books, created by Tony Gimmellie, a competitive shooter and USMC vet who served seven years as a Marine Scout Sniper. While in the military, Tony made his data books for himself and for other Marines because commercial offerings lacked important (and even essential) features.
After Tony left the Marines in 2001 he set out to create modular data books with removable, replaceable pages. Some years later, Tony met Tom Challey who brought much-needed design and layout skills to the project. Starting in 2009, Tony and Tom began selling Impact Data Books. Customized Impact Data Books are now used by the U.S. military, federal and state law enforcement agencies, gun manufacturers, and by well-known shooting schools. Standardized, pre-made Impact Data Books are sold by MidwayUSA and other vendors. Two sizes are offered: the standard 9 1/8″ by 6.5″ book or a 5.5″ x 4 1/4″ pocket-sized version.
TAB GEAR Cordura covers for large or small Impact Data Books are $42.00 from Riflesonly.com.
Review of Impact Data Books
The first thing that you will notice about an Impact Data Book is the durable Poly-carbonate three ring binder. The tough plastic covers have been scored so that the book lays open flat and won’t accidently close. Covers come in two colors: tan with the Impact Data Book logo in black, or black with logo in red. The standard page material is heavy, 80-weight executive stock, or, for a slight additional charge, you can get “Rite in the Rain” water-resistant stock.
Each Impact Data Book comes with a set of standard pages that include: wind observation, general ballistic tables, range estimation, size of objects reference, yards to meters conversion tables, common conversion formulas, leads for moving targets, angle fire information, mil-value adjustments, and MOA-adjustment values. You then can choose among eight (8) sets of ten double-sided pages to augment the basic reference pages.
Impact Data Books offer many alternative page formats. Drawing from over 250 different page designs, you can optimize a modular book for your individual needs. If you shoot short range benchrest, 600- or 1000-yard benchrest, F-class, NRA Service rifle there are pages for you. Want blank pages, grids, circles, animal silhouettes, drills, special shapes, even Shoot-N-C targets? Impact Data Books offers those pages too. And if you still can’t find what you need, Tony and Tom can customize a page for you or your organization, optimized for your discipline(s).
The complete modular book will have 100 double-sided sheets providing the shooter with 160 data collection pages, 20 pages of reference material, plus 3 round-count pages, 3 note pages, 2 sniper range cards, and two field sketch pages. Over all, you’ll have 200 pages optimized for your needs. In the real world, that’s far more useful than any “off-the-shelf” data book filled with many pages you don’t need or want.
What Do They Cost?
A pre-made Impact Data Book, such as the F-Class book, costs $32.00. You’ll pay $42.00 for a fully-customized 200-page (100 sheets) modular data book. Additional page sets can be added for just $3.99 per set of ten double-sided pages.
Danny’s Custom GroundHog Match Data Book
I shoot a lot of GroundHog/Varmint Matches. For these competitions, I wanted a book that would work at many different club matches yet adapt to each club’s particular yardages and course of fire. I worked with Tony to come up with a GroundHog Match book that contains: one set of index pages with wind charts etc.; 40 double-sided GroundHog Match sheets; one shooters info/rifle info page; 10 load development sheets; 10 round-count sheets; 10 blank end-of-fire data sheets; 5 note pages; and 5 come-up sheets.
I think any shooter involved in groundhog shoots or fun varmint matches can benefit from this GroundHog Match Data book, priced at $32.00. You can order from me, we3reevers [at] embarqmail.com, or order directly from Impact Data Books, P.O. Box 223, King George, VA 22485.
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Barrel tuners have been used successfully in rimfire benchrest for many years (see photo below). While there are competing theories as to how and why barrel tuners work on rimfire rifles, there is no question that the accuracy of some rimfire barrels can be improved with the addition of a tuner. By changing the position of weights at the end of the barrel, we’ve seen shooters shrink their average group size as well as adjust the “sweet spot” for different lots of rimfire ammo. On the other hand, tuners can be the source of great frustration; some installations may yield little or no benefit. A shooter may have to experiment with a variety of different tuner designs (and weights) to find the optimal configuration.
Centerfire Tuners–Still a Work in Progress
In centerfire benchrest competition, the vast majority of competitors do not use tuners, though a few short-range shooters such as Gene Bukys and Jackie Schmidt have enjoyed considerable success. Gene has won major championships with tuned rifles. In 2011 Gene won both the Super Shoot and World Benchrest Championship (WBC), and Gene recently set a new NBRSA Sporter Class Grand Agg Record.
Centerfire benchrest guns typically employ shorter barrels with a much fatter contour (larger diameter) than rimfire rifles. Because centerfire rounds produce much higher pressures and velocities that a 22LR, a centerfire barrel also exhibits much different vibration characteristics than a typical rimfire barrel. Nonetheless, there are pioneers working with centerfire tuners who believe that tuning may be the “next leap forward” in centerfire accuracy.
Shown below is a switch-barrel benchrest rifle built by Forum member Eddie W. of Texas. It features a dual-port Hall “M” action with a ShadeTree Engineering Tuner crafted by Butch Lambert. The gun is designed to take both a 6PPC barrel for group shooting and a 30BR barrel for score shooting. The gun was barreled by Wayne Shaw, and Eddie did the stock work himself. Eddie reports: “It is a very accurate rifle.”
Will we see more tuners on centerfire rifles? Only time will tell. Some folks believe that, since one can easily adjust the loads shot by centerfire guns (by tinkering with the powder charge and seating depth), tuners have limited utility. On the other hand, tuner advocates such as Gene Beggs believe tuners can help keep your group sizes small even as conditions (temperature, humidity) change. Gene believes that, with an appropriate tuner, you can spend less time fiddling with the load specs (changing your powder charge) and instead “dial in” your sweet spot using the tuner.
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The tool-makers at 21st Century Shooting have come up with a very slick new Precision Hand-Priming Tool. This extremely well-made, benchrest-grade unit raises the bar among single-primer seating tools. Feel is great, changing shell-holders is simple, and nothing else on the market offers better control over primer seating depth. The tool’s precision-adjusting head provides clicks in .0025″ increments for precise seating depth. The tool’s body, internals, and shell-holders are stainless, while the handle is anodized aluminum. Price is $118.00 for the tool itself. Shell-holders (sizes from 17 Remington up to .338 Lapua Magnum) cost $7.99 each.
21st Century Priming Tool Review By Boyd Allen
I have been priming cases, with various hand-priming tools, for about three decades, and in the process have pretty much tried them all, from least to most expensive. When I found out that this new 21st Century tool was adjustable for seating depth, I wondered about that. After all, what do I, who believes in seating by feel, need with adjustable seating depth? Well…..I was wrong. Let me explain.
Why Adjustment for Primer Seating Depth Is Important
Most hand-seating tools do not have an adjustment for how far up the priming punch comes up into the shell holder. As a result, when priming a case with a deep pocket, especially if there has been some wear of the tool’s linkage, the finger/thumb lever may contact the tool’s body before the primer is fully seated. Having a primer seated too high can cause a myriad of problems. Prior to this, the only seater that I had used that had an adjustable linkage was the Sinclair tool, and adjusting its linkage requires disassembly — regular disassembly if you want to keep it perfect. That’s not convenient. The Sinclair is good tool, but a pain in the neck to adjust.
Precision Control Over Seating Depth — With Click Adjustment
The 21st Century Priming Tool offers quick and easy depth adjustment (unlike its rival from Sinclair). The 21st Century unit can be adjusted in precise increments (.0025”) more quickly than you can read this sentence. The knurled head of the tool is threaded onto the body, which has a very sturdy ball and spring detent indexing system that is easy to adjust and precise. Clicks are secure and positive. With this feature, you can set the tool so that the handle is in any position (distance from the tool body) that you find convenient, when the primer is fully seated. Additionally, since leverage increases as the handle approaches the tool body, different stopping points afford differing mechanical advantages (more or less effort required) and sensitivity. By doing a little experimenting, I have found a point of adjustment that give me better feel for when the primer hits the bottom of the pocket, without overshooting the mark, while keeping the force requirement within a range that is comfortable when priming a large number of cases.
Quick and Easy Shell-Holder Changing
Changing shell holders is easily accomplished. No extra hex-wrenches or tools are needed, and there are no tiny set screws to roll of the desk, to be lost forever in the carpet, never to be heard from again until you hear them rattling up the vacuum cleaner hose. To swap shell-holders, simply screw the head off of the body, lift off the one that you one that you are replacing, set the one that you intend to use in place (assuming that it used the same size primer) and screw the head back down to the setting that you want. Changing primer sizes is equally easy. NOTE: The tool requires 21st Century-made shell holders. These may be turned (relative to the handle) so that the loading slot opening faces whatever direction you prefer.
Fit, Finish, and Feel
The body and head of the tool, as well as the internal linkages, are all made from stainless steel. These closely-fitted parts are precisely machined, with an smooth, attractive finish. The handle is black anodized aluminum. Overall, the tool is well-shaped, and built like a stainless/aluminum brick.
Bottom Line: Great Tool That Works Exceptionally Well
I can’t imagine anyone, who uses a single-primer tool of this type, not liking this tool. When it comes to hand reloading tools, I can afford to have pretty much whatever I want (within reason). After testing and using this tool, I pulled my Sinclair tool from its case, and replaced it with this one. That should say it all. After using this tool, I will have to give serious consideration to other 21st Century reloading products the next time I need a new tool. One thing is for sure — we have an important new player in the design and manufacture of top end of reloading equipment. 21st Century’s Precision Priming Tool “raises the bar” among single-primer seating tools.
Tool Size Considerations
I wrote the review and then took the pictures, which, upon reflection, make the tool look smaller than it is, because of the size of my hands. I thought about putting a ruler in the pictures, but rejected that as visual clutter, so I will simply tell you that from tip of thumb to that of my little finger, my right hand measures a little over 10 inches, and the palm is 4 inches wide. The size of the tool is just right.
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RCBS has a new made-in-USA single-stage reloading press. With its innovative “moving die/static cartridge” design, the new RCBS Summit Press definitely demonstrates “out of the box” thinking. Unlike other presses, the case does not move. Rather, the reloading die comes down to the case. With the press bolted on your reloading bench, all operations of the Summit take place ABOVE the bench-top.
The new Summit Press features a rugged cast-iron frame with all-steel linkages. The press is very strong with minimal flex and slop in use. This allows you to “bump” your case shoulders and seat bullets with great precision and repeatability. The handle can be switched from right to left side (good for southpaws), and the open-front design provides good access, facilitating quick die changes. The 4.5-inch opening allows you to work with tall cases. Beneath the shell-holder is a spent primer catcher.
The new Summit press has a beefy 2-inch diameter ram, with compound linkages for plenty of leverage. A zerk fitting is included for easy lubrication. The press will accept larger bushings for oversize 1-inch dies.
Summit Press for $207.94
The new Summit Press (RCBS item #09290) lists for $269.95. However, Midsouth Shooters Supply offers the Summit Press for $207.94. An optional short handle costs $15.27 at Midsouth ($19.95 MSRP).
RCBS Summit Press Features:
• Bench-top operation
• Massive 2-inch diameter ram
• Ambidextrous handle
• Compound leverage
• 4.50-inch operating window
• Spent primer catcher
• Full frontal access
• Accepts bushings for 1″ die bodies
• Press adapter bushing
• Zerk lubrication fitting
• Made in USA
Product tip by EdLongrange. We welcome reader submissions.
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Nightforce Optics has created quite a stir in the tactical shooting community with the announcement of its new 5-25x56mm First Focal Plane scope, which it calls the “B.E.A.S.T.”. The news is in the numbers — this new scope offers a whopping 120 MOA of elevation travel, and you get a full 60 MOA travel with each rotation of the turret. That’s right — 60 MOA with one turn. With many modern cartridges you can get to 1200 yards (and maybe farther*) with a single revolution — that eliminates all sorts of user-error issues when dialing back-and-forth between yardages.
This is a first-focal-plane design, so the reticle stays constant relative to the target, allowing ranging at any magnification. The scope is offered with four (4) click-value choices: 1/4 MOA, 1/2 MOA, 0.1 Mil, and 0.2 Mil. Whether you chose MOA clicks or Mil-based clicks, you can get an appropriate reticle because Nightforce offers both the MOAR ranging reticle and the Mil-R ranging reticle. The three other reticle options are: MD2.0, TReMoR, and H59.
The new B.E.A.S.T. 5-25x56mm Nightforce has a mounting length of 5.92″ and weighs just 39 ounces. If you need illumination for low-light work, you’ll like the new B.E.A.S.T. scope. It offers external-control digital illumination with Unique i4F™ four-function brightness control. Other features are listed below.
Nice Scope with a Beastly Price
Nightforce says that “B.E.A.S.T.” stands for “Best Example of Advance Scope Technology” — some marketing guy’s bright idea we suppose. Perhaps “B.E.A.S.T.” better signifies “BEAST of a price”. This scope, with either MIL-R or MOAR reticles, costs an astounding $3,298.00! You can build a pretty darn good custom rifle, all premium components, for less than that!
*We used JBM Ballistics to plot the trajectory of a .308-caliber 168gr Berger Match Target BT launched with a 2800 fps muzzle velocity (sea level with 59° temp). Starting with a 100-yard zero, JBM calculates 52.5 MOA drop at 1200 yards and 62.6 MOA drop at 1300 yards.
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Becigneul Case Turning Motor, by German Salazar
Although there have been a variety of similar devices and ‘case lathes’ offered for sale in the past, they’ve been priced fairly high. Paul’s unit is reasonably priced ($220.00) and built like a tank. The motor turns at about 180 rpm which is just right for neck turning. What’s really nice is that the motor has enough torque to hold its speed throughout the whole operation and a/c power to run all day long!
The unit’s design is fairly straight-forward: a surplus electric motor turns a Forster case-holding collet. Paul makes a nice knurled collar to open and close the collet.Power is controlled by a household type wall switch attached to a long cabe. The whole assembly is mounted on a nice hardwood base.
Video of Paul Becigneul’s Case Turning Motor in Use
In operation, it works very well. The collet has enough clamping power to hold the case after a quick hand-tightening, no wrench is needed (although you can use one if you are so inclined). A quarter turn of the collar opens the collet and a quick turn of the wrist tightens it back up. As with any powered case neck turning device, the case wobbles a bit as it turns. This doesn’t matter a bit as the turning cutter is held in your hand (which is free to move) and the cutter’s arbor is the actual alignment device. The wobble is the same or less than what I had using a power screwdriver with a K&M holder.
For more information, email Paul Becigneul via: pbike4466 [at] directv.net. In 2012, the basic unit cost $220.00 each collet was $10 and shipping is $20 to most U.S. locations.
Editor’s Comment: In the video, Paul uniforms case flash-holes with a Lyman tool (from the inside) and then uniforms primer pockets (from the outside) with a K&M tool. While we do believe that flash-holes should be inspected to ensure there are no obstructions or flakes blocking the hole, we have not found that flash-hole or primer-pocket uniforming produced measurable improvements in accuracy with Lapua 6mmBR brass. In fact, in our tests using a manual K&M flash-hole uniformer, ES/SD actually got worse after the flash-holes were “uniformed”.
Keep in mind also that many deburring tools for 0.059 (PPC-size) flash-holes actually over-cut substantially, reaming the holes to as wide as 0.068″. The Lapua PPC/BR flash hole is spec’d at 1.5mm, which works out to 0.059055″. Most of the PPC/BR flash-hole uniforming tools on the market use a 1/16″ bit which is nominally 0.0625″, but these often run oversize — up to 0.067″. If you like to uniform your primer pockets, be our guest (this can be useful with lesser-quality brass). But before pocket-uniforming dozens of cases, you might do a comparison test (by shooting uniformed vs. un-uniformed ammo) to see whether this operation actually improves accuracy with the brass you are using.
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New 3000 FPS Rimfire Round Winchester has announced a new, high-velocity 17-caliber rimfire cartridge, the .17 Winchester Super Magnum (aka .17 Win Super Mag). The .17 Win Super Mag will initially be offered in three bullet types: 20gr plastic tip (Varmint HV), 25gr plastic tip (Varmint HE), and a 20gr JHP (Super-X). The 20-grain varieties boast a 3000 FPS muzzle velocity, earning honors as the fastest Rimfire ammo ever made.
.17 Winchester Super Mag Specifications
20-gr Plastic Tip
25-gr Plastic Tip
Winchester claims that all .17 Win Super Mag ammo types shoot much flatter than the .22 Win Mag and .17 HMR, while delivering more than 150 percent more energy than both. In addition, the .17 Win Super Mag “bucks the wind” better than any other rimfire ammo — exhibiting significant less horizontal drift at extended ranges. The ammunition should be available at Winchester dealers by April 2013.
Savage Will Release a .17 Win Super Mag Rifle
According to Outdoor Life’s John Snow, Savage will be the first gun-maker to produce rifles chambered in .17 Win Super Mag. Snow says Savage “hopes to have rifles shipping by mid-April”. Winchester states that, later in 2013, two other manufacturers will introduce .17 Win Super Mag rifles.
Ron Spooner writes: “For perspective, contrast the 17 Win Super Mag (no relation to the WSM centerfire cartridges) against the former rimfire velocity champ, the popular .17 Hornady Magnum Rimfire. While the 17 HMR shoots delightfully flat, the 17 Win Super Mag shoots two times flatter and drifts only half as far in the wind. Its 20-grain bullets retain more than twice as much downrange energy, and its 25-grain projectiles nearly triple the energy of the 17-grain V-Max in the HMR load”. Read Ron Spooner Review.
Watch Video Trailer for .17 Win Super Mag Rimfire Ammo
The .17 Win Super Mag offers higher velocities and more downrange energy than ever before. “Our engineers have been developing the top-secret .17 Win Super Mag [cartridge] for more than three years,” said Brett Flaugher, Winchester Ammunition vice president of sales, marketing and strategy. “At 3,000 feet per second it’s the fastest modern rimfire cartridge on the planet. The downrange energy deposited by the .17 Win Super Mag will be a game-changer for varmint and predator hunters everywhere. Now hunters will get the downrange performance of a centerfire cartridge at the more affordable price point of traditional rimfire ammunition. It’s the best of both worlds[.]”
Spawn of a .27-Caliber Nail-Gun
Believe it or not, Winchester’s new .17 Win Super Mag evolved from a “parent case” originally developed for .27-caliber powder-actuated concrete nail guns. Winchester has produced millions of nail gun blanks in .22, .25, and .27 calibers. This new .17 Win Super Mag is derived from Winchester’s .27-cal nail gun blank, necked down to .17-caliber and strengthened with a thicker head and stronger case-walls. With case-walls that are 50% thicker than those on 17 HMR cartridges, the .17 Win Super Mag can operate at 33,000 psi. By contrast, the 17 HMR maxes out at 26,000 psi.
Comment: Will the .17 Win Super Mag Rimfire Round Be a Hit or a Miss?
Initial tests of the .17 Win Super Mag show good ballistic performance compared to the 17 HMR. On the other hand, early accuracy reports have been mediocre, but keep in mind that the gun magazine tests were performed with prototype rifles, on make-shift, wobbly rests (that’s typical). It will be interesting to see how the round can really perform in a good barrel when shot from a stable rest by a skilled trigger-puller.
Economics may dictate whether the .17 Win Super Mag catches on. We’re told this new cartridge will sell for $17.99 per 50-round box. That works out to $0.36 per round, making it about 40-50% more costly than the popular 17 HMR which now sells for $11.50 to $14.00 per 50-round box. At $0.36 per round, the .17 Win Super Mag may exceed the cost of 17-cal centerfire reloads, but then you have the convenience of pre-made ammo. We think that, if the cartridge proves accurate, varmint hunters will pay the extra money (over the 17 HMR) for the added performance, which is pretty significant at 150 yards and beyond. For a squirrel shooter or prairie dog hunter, the .17 Win Super Mag is still much less expensive than the cheapest US-made .223 Rem ammo, which sold for about $10 – $12 per 20-round box (i.e. $0.50 – $0.60 per round) before the current buying frenzy.
Story tip by EdLongRange. We welcome reader submissions.
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Nightforce Optics has just announced an all-new, side-focus 15-55x52mm Competition™ Scope. It looks very impressive. The ED (low-dispersion) glass in the new 15-55X provides high contrast, low chromatic aberration, and 92% light transmission. And this scope is a LOT lighter than the current 12-42x56mm — that will help guys make weight. We’re pleased to see the new scope offers a fast-focus, European-style eyepiece. Two reticles will be offered initially: the CTR-1 and DDR (shown below). The big question is “how much will it cost?”. A Nightforce dealer told us that Minimum Advertised Price (MAP) will be $2231.00. We’ll run a full report on this scope when we get our hands on it at SHOT Show.
The big news is that, with a weight of just 27.8 ounces, the new 15-55X Nightforce Competition Scope is 24% lighter than the NF 12-42×56 Benchrest model, and 20% lighter than the NF 12-42×56 NXS. Like the NXS series, the new Competition scope offers side parallax adjustment; and, it will focus from 25 yards to infinity, making it suitable for rimfire and airgun shooting as well as centerfire competition. The turrets provide positive and repeatable .125 MOA (eighth-minute-of-angle) clicks. Each rotation provides 5 MOA of adjustment. And we’re pleased to see that the Competition Scope offers a full 60 MOA of travel — for both windage and elevation. That’s impressive. CLICK HERE for more information.
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Remington will introduce a new bolt-action rifle at SHOT Show, the Model 783. Remington positions the new model 783 as a mid-level offering between the Model 770 and Model 700 SPS, according to John Fink, Freedom Group Rifle Product Manager. This new rifle was first revealed in an American Rifleman article by Richard Mann, who tested an early production version in September 2012. Mann reports: “The ‘7’ in the model designation comes from the 700 line of rifles, the ‘8’ is kind of a throwback to the affordable but reliable model 788, which was discontinued 20 years ago, and the ‘3’ is for the three in 2013. The suggested retail price is $451, but you can expect street prices to be closer to $400.”
Remington is claiming sub-MOA accuracy for the Model 783, as demonstrated by the “teaser” photo sent out to Remington customers earlier this week:
Adjustable Trigger with Insert
The rifle features a polymer stock, cylindrical action, and an adjustable trigger with a control insert (as used on the Savage AccuTrigger and Marlin Pro-Fire trigger). Remington’s “CrossFire Trigger System” is pre-set at 3.5 lbs pull weight. According to the reviewer, Remington’s CrossFire Trigger is “similar in appearance to the Savage AccuTrigger and the Marlin Pro-Fire Trigger; it has a center lever that locks the trigger until it is fully depressed.” (We think selecting “CrossFire” as a product title was a dumb move by Rem’s marketing guys.)
Model 783 Has Barrel Nut System
Remington has borrowed a trick from Savage, employing a barrel nut system for fitting barrels to model 783 actions. The model 783’s two-lug bolt features a Sako-style sliding-plate extractor — this is a departure from the system on a Rem 700. Scopes can be mounted with two Model 700-spec front scope bases. However, Remington plans to offer integral scope mounts in the near future.
Designed for game hunters, the model 783 will initially be offered in four chamberings: .308 Winchester (short action), .270 Winchester, .30-06 Springfield, and 7mm Rem. Magnum. Remington says it will roll out more chamberings by the middle of 2013. In addition a compact-stock version with a shorter length of pull will be offered. Barrels are 22″ or 24″ with a “magnum contour”. Model 783 rifles will be produced in the Freedom Group’s Mayfield, Kentucky manufacturing plant.
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SHOT Show 2013 kicks off in two weeks in Las Vegas. One of our top priorities is to talk with the bullet makers from Berger, Hornady, Lapua, and Nosler.
At SHOT Show 2012 we chatted with Berger Ballistician Bryan Litz about Berger’s popular line of Hybrid bullets. Berger now offers a wide range of Hybrids in multiple calibers and weights. In fact, for .30-Caliber shooters, Berger now offers six different Hybrid match bullets, with weights from 155 grains up to 230 grains. New .338 Cal Tactical Hybrids were released in 2012 and big .375 Cal, and .408 Cal Hybrids are in the works (read more below).
Bryan tells us: “The hybrid design is Berger’s solution to the age old problem of precision vs. ease of use. This design is making life easier for handloaders as well as providing opportunities for commercial ammo loaders who need to offer a high performance round that also shoots precisely in many rifles with various chamber/throat configurations.”
For those not familiar with Hybrid bullets, the Hybrid design blends two common bullet nose shapes on the front section of the bullet (from the tip to the start of the bearing surface). Most of the curved section of the bullet has a Secant (VLD-style) ogive for low drag. This then blends in a Tangent-style ogive curve further back, where the bullet first contacts the rifling. The Tangent section makes seating depth less critical to accuracy, so the Hybrid bullet can shoot well through a range of seating depths, even though it has a very high Ballistic Coefficient (BC).
In the video we asked Bryan for recommended seating depths for 7mm and .30-Caliber Hybrid bullets. Bryan advises that, as a starting point, Hybrid bullets be seated .015″ (fifteen thousandths) off the lands in most barrels. Watch the video for more tips how to optimize your loads with Hybrid bullets.
Berger is Developing New Large-Caliber and Hunting Hybrids
In related news, Berger announced that it will be offering a series of .338-caliber Hybrids. First Berger is reintroducing the Gen 1 .338 Cal, 300gr Hybrid bullet in Berger’s Hunting line. Berger will also be making a 250gr Hybrid Hunting bullet using the same type of jacket as the original Gen 1 300gr Hybrid bullet. In addition, Berger has released a .338 Cal 250gr Match Hybrid OTM Tactical bullet, along with a 300gr Match Hybrid OTM Tactical projectile.
More big bullets are on the drawing board. Our source says “.375 Caliber and then .408 Caliber are the next new calibers to be made at Berger”. These are in the design phase, and Berger needs to build a new machine, so the .375s and .408s will not be available until 2013 at the earliest.
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In the 1980s, Glen Eberle was an Olympic Biathlete with Team USA. Recognizing the benefits of a lighter, more durable rifle stock, Glen invented a radical new biathlon stock that literally “changed the game”. Glen’s lighter stock allowed biathletes to ski faster. His stock was also more rugged than conventional designs, so it could better survive the inevitable tumbles that occur in competition.
Since retiring from Biathlon competition, Eberle has built a successful Idaho-based company that supplies tough field packs and accessories for hunters and the military. But Glen never lost interest in stock design, and over the past few years he has developed an innovative new tactical chassis that is quite different than anything on the market today.
Eberlestock Model 11 Stealth Rifle Chassis system Fits Rem 700s
The Eberlestock Model 11 Stealth Rifle Chassis system is compact, light-weight and strong. Designed to fit Remington 700 actions, the Eberlestock model 11 chassis offers a drop-in, no-gunsmithing solution for tactical shooters. For the Rem 700 and Rem-clone actions, the Model 11 Chassis employs Accuracy Int’l Classic detachable box magazines (DBMs). The folding-stock version of the new Eberle chassis is very compact. Eberle claims it is “the shortest [folding-stock] sniper system in the world”.
The Model 11 Stealth Chassis is in Production Now
The basic Model 11 Stealth Rifle Chassis weighs 4 pounds and costs $1895.00. First availability will be for the Remington Model 700 short action. Next offerings will be for Rem Model 700 long actions, followed by stocks to fit models from other manufacturers. A variety of configuration options are offered, including folding butt-stock and a fore-stock with mounting rails. For more info, visit www.Eberlestock.com, or call Eberlestock USA in Idaho at 877-866-3047 or 208-424-5081.
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Wilson Combat now offers an Adjustable Lo-Profile AR Gas Block for direct gas impingement AR-type rifles. Wilson Combat’s new adjustable gas block replaces a standard AR gas block and allows you to tune your AR’s gas system for smoother cycling and enhanced reliability. Wilson Combat explains: “Adjusting your rifle’s gas port will lower or increase your bolt’s cyclic rate. This tailors your rifle’s performance to your unique needs.”
A simple adjustment of the hex screw at the front of the block modulates the gas volume allowing you to tune your rifle’s function to your favorite loads. This is very handy when shooting non-standard AR calibers, unusual hand-loads, or suppressed rifles. Adjustable Gas Block systems are sold as complete kits starting at $74.95. Wilson Combat offers two diameters (.750″, .937″) and three lengths (Carbine Length, Mid-Length, & Rifle Length), so you can select the right dimensions for your rifle configuration and barrel diameter. The blocks are Chromoly steel with a Melonited finish.
Adjustable Gas Block (Melonite Finish)
Adjustment Set Screw (Installed)
Straight Gas Tube (Installed, Gas Tube Pin Installed)
12″-Long Allen Wrench to Adjust Inside Handguard
$74.95 – $79.95
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Gun owners who live or do business in California should strongly consider purchasing this 320-page book. California gun laws are complex and confusing. There are over 800 California state statutes regulating the manufacture, distribution, sale, possession, and use of firearms. There are thousands of overlapping federal laws regulating firearms that apply in California. And there are hundreds of administrative regulations, local ordinances, and California Department Justice Firearms Bureau written and unwritten policies that also apply.
On top of the already byzantine regulatory scheme, on January 1, 2012 California firearm laws were completely reorganized and re-numbered. Because of the complexity of the laws, and the recent statute number changes, inadvertent gun law violations by well-intentioned citizens are increasingly common. In the politicized legal environment of California “gun-control” laws, the consequences of even an inadvertent violation can be severe.
With all the overlapping regulations, it’s no wonder that confusion runs rampant among California gun owners, as well as among police, prosecutors, and judges. To protect yourself, you need to know the law. This book will help. California Gun Laws tells you how to legally buy, own, transport and possess firearms, and explains how you get your firearms or firearm rights back if they are taken away. The book warns about common legal “traps” that may ensnare California firearm owners.
Author Profile:C.D. (Chuck) Michel is an attorney with 20 years of experience representing the National Rifle Association (NRA) and California Rifle & Pistol Association (CRPA), as well as firearm manufacturers, wholesalers, retailers, and gun owners, Michel has been litigating civil and criminal firearm cases since 1991, many of which were high profile and attracted state and national media attention.
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NECO a vendor of specialty reloading products include QuickLOAD software, recently revealed some impressive 6.5 mm bullet offerings — a new CNC-turned solid brass 107gr bullet and the hard-to-find Norma 130gr bullet (in both naked and moly-coated versions).
Solid Brass DaVinci 6.5mm Bullets
The new solid brass NECO DaVinci Match Grade 6.5mm burner is an interesting High BC VLD-style design. Precision-machined on Swiss CNC machines, these bullets show exceptional dimensional and weight uniformity. And you won’t ever need to “tip” these bullets. The DaVinci 107-grainers feature a precision-drilled drilled hollow point and machined meplat. The DaVinci 107s are made from high-grade free machining brass. This is softer than copper but much harder and more durable than lead. If you’re wondering about the milled grooves in the body of the bullet, those are there to reduce the bearing surface area — a common design feature on solids. NECO is claiming: “Great lubricity resulting in less pressure than a solid copper or a jacketed bullet.” We haven’t tested this milled bullets yet but we hope to try them out soon in a 6.5×47 we have in the works. Initial tests by the manufacturer have soon good accuracy.
Thanks to a promotional offer from NECO, these new .264 caliber, 107gr bullets are more affordable than most other lathe-turned designs. Now through January 14, 2013, a 100-ct box of solid brass DaVinci 6.5mm bullets is $75.00. That’s not cheap, but it’s not outrageous when you considers some jacketed match bullets now run close to $50.00 per box. Currently only 107gr DaVincis are for sale, but NECO plans to offer 120gr 6.5mm solids in the future.
Norma 6.5mm 130gr Match Bullets
In Europe, High Power-style shooting with 6.5mm rifles is extremely popular. In Germany and throughout Scandinavia, thousands of shooters compete in matches with 6.5×55 target rifles, notably the Sauer STR 200. One of the most popular projectiles is Norma’s 130gr match bullet. NECO now sells this bullet design in both naked (Golden Target) and moly-coated (Diamond Line) versions. Diamond Line 130s are moly-coated by Norma at the factory under license with NECO.
Both naked and coated Norma 130-grainers are affordable, priced at $34.95 per 100ct box, or $164.95 per 500ct box. Shooters have praised Norma’s 6.5mm 130gr match bullets. Check out these user reviews from MidwayUSA.com:
“Bullet has an excellent Litz G7 BC and a shorter ogive than the 130gr Bergers, making them more magazine friendly. Experience in my 26″ 1:8 barrel shows peak accuracy around 2900 fps with H4350, with another small node around 2960 fps.” — Paul, Sellersberg, IN
“Bought a box of 500 since the Berger 130s were in short supply due to competition season. First impressions: very well made, consistent weight, ogive, and bearing length. Loaded some up for my Savage 6.5×47 Bartlein 1:8″-twist 28″ and during load development at 200 yards I could shoot very small groups… with .409″ nice 5-shot clusters on a windy day. They seem to like just kissing the lands and you do not have to hot-rod them. Will buy another box of 500, these are very good mid range competition bullets and will use them in my next club match. Highly recommend!” — Steve, Nashville, TN
To see a 6.5×55 Sauer STR 200 rifle in action, watch the video. In this ‘Stangskyting’ competition, shooters have just 25 seconds to hit the target [at] 200-300m distance as many times as possible. In the video, a shooter named Børklop, using his Sauer STR 200, puts 16 rounds on target in just 25 seconds. (He starts with a round in the chamber and cycles through three, 5-round magazines). Børklop’s performance, with just a sling and iron sights, is impressive. Note that Børklop manipulates the Sauer’s bolt with his thumb and index finger, while pulling the trigger with his middle finger.
Product Tip from EdLongrange. We welcome reader submissions
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Midsouth Shooters Supply is now taking advance orders for the new Accurate LT-32 Powder, with initial deliveries expected in January 2013. Price for a 1-lb container is $25.12, while an 8-lb jug runs $190.50. Produced by Western Powders, LT-32 is an extruded powder with extremely small kernels (roughly .0275″). This powder is designed to perform like the legendary “T-322″ powders which worked brilliantly in short-range benchrest cartridges, especially the 6mm PPC. Early testers report that Accurate LT-32 meters superbly and is easy to tune. Western claims LT-32 exhibits very low standard deviation. (Photos below by Speedy Gonzalez).
Speedy Says Accurate LT-32 is Very Promising
Benchrest Hall-of-Famer and noted gunsmith Thomas ‘Speedy’ Gonzalez tested the prototype LT-32 powder from Western Powder earlier this year. Speedy stated: “It pains me to say it, but the new LT-32 out-shot my best lots of [the original] IMR 8208 (T-322)”.
Speedy reports: “I must say that I was quite surprised by the results of my initial testing of the new Western Powder LT-32. Shooting this morning over my Oehler 35P triple screen chronograph yielded some very unexpected results. My best lot of ‘T’ powder continues to exhibit its age as it continues to lose velocity (as it ages). While the new Western LT-32 demonstrated this morning velocities equal to what my old ‘T’ powder used to shoot like 30 years ago.
This new powder goes through the measure like a ball powder. (Note: I have always felt that one of the reasons ‘T’ powder shot so well was due to the fact it measured so well as compared to other powders. This is a definite advantage for us that rely on consistent volume instead of weight.) I will have to shoot it over a season to see if it is as temperature and humidity insensitive as ‘T’, but it looks very promising from what I saw today.
It has yet to be seen if the new LT-32 proves to not be affected by temperature and humidity like the old T-322. But from these short tests it very much mimics my T-322 of old. My ‘T’ powder was always a blessing to me in the fact that when I went to a match I did not have the same problems everyone else was having [i.e. having] to tune up and down over the course of a weekend or week. I got to shoot and concentrate on the conditions instead of making it a tuning competition. It was always kind of funny watching everybody going up and down on their powders trying to accommodate the changes in weather as the days went on. Hopefully this will allow all to become better shooters by being able to concentrate on shooting and not re-turning every time one comes back from the bench.”
Statement from Western Powders
The Accurate LT-32 is an exact copy of the original T-32 manufactured in the same plant and on the same machinery as the original. Lou Murdica has been extensively testing it and he tells us it is the easiest powder to tune that he has seen in 40 years.
According to Lou, the chamber that everybody was using in the 80s will work with this powder. The bullets do not need to be seated way out in order to get more powder in the case. In testing the powder in our Bond Universal receiver against the original “T” powder, SDs were about 30% lower with the new powder versus the “T” powder. Lou and Don Nielson donated 16 lbs. of the original T-32 lot of powder for our quality control and that is what the new powder is shot against.
All of our powders are allowed to deviate +3% to -5% in pressure from the quality control lot except LT-32 which we cut the deviation percentages in half in order to have the best lot to lot consistency in the industry for this powder[.] We developed this powder specifically for the 6mm PPC and it is QC’d in the 6mm PPC.
Western Powders Ballistic Lab
NOTE: Accurate LT-32 should also be available from PowderValleyInc.com in mid-to-late January 2013. Listed Prices are: $24.10 for 1 pound and $182.00 for 8 pounds.
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Here’s a cool new item for the avid shooters on your Xmas gift list. For this holiday season, Creedmoor Sports has created special package-wrapping paper with target graphics. The unique, heavy-weight gift wrap features Dennis DeMille’s High Power Rifle National Record Target score of 200-20x+100-8x at 200 yards. The 36″ x 24″ sheets are made from 60# stock with a gloss finish. Individual wrapping sheets cost $1.95 or you can buy five sheets for $7.95. This special wrapping paper with bullseye graphics is perfect for gifts to the shooters in your family, or for gifts a club may present to members at year’s end.
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