November 20th, 2014

LSU Develops Shooting System for Disabled Marksmen

Story by Kyle Jillson for NRABlog.com
The NRA Foundation is proud to support Louisiana State University’s Mobile Marksman Project, a system developed by the LSU Mechanical Engineering Capstone Design Program to help high-level quadriplegics to participate in the shooting sports. The nearly $2,200 grant funded the 2014 system, the team’s final design iteration.

Mobile Marksman disabled quadraplegic software LSU

Mobile Marksman disabled quadraplegic software LSUCreated in 2009, the Mobile Marksman Project is a manually-controlled shooting platform that allows handicapped hunters to aim and fire a mounted firearm with head-tracking software and a small tube that is activated with a puff of air.

Capstone Design Instructor Capt. Dave Giurintano and the Mobile Marksman team worked with high-level quadriplegics to address system requirements and create a lightweight, portable system that is simple to use and enjoy. Recent additions include recoil-absorbing legs and a rail-mounted camera that displays the crosshairs and target on a high-resolution digital screen.

“It has been our profound pleasure to have a hand in working on it, to extend the hunting and shooting experience to everyone, regardless of physical disability,” said Garen Armbruster, Mobile Marksman Team Leader.

Mobile Marksman disabled quadraplegic software LSU

Established in 1990, The NRA Foundation, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization that raises tax-deductible contributions in support of a wide range of firearm-related public interest activities of the National Rifle Association of America and other organizations. These activities are designed to promote firearm and hunting safety, to enhance marksmanship skills, and to educate the general public about firearms.

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November 18th, 2014

In Memoriam — Forum Member John Adams

It is with great sadness we announce the passing of John Adams of Fallbrook, Calfornia. One of our very first Forum members, John has been a stalwart supporter of this site for nearly a decade. He generously donated funds, reloading components, and equipment to our site, year after year, asking nothing in return. A modest man, John was also an innovator, who developed his own wildcat cartridges, designed reloading tools, and put together some great-shooting rifles.

John Adams Pala Silhouette

On Saturday, November 15, Johnny Adams (John’s son) sent out this message to John’s friends and acquaintances in the shooting community: “I have to inform everyone of the sad news that my father, John Adams, died unexpectedly this Saturday Morning. He has been battling cancer for a number of years and has finally succumbed to the disease. He has asked me to include this photo of him and asked that his friends remember him in this way.”

John was a very active benchrest shooter in Southern California, and one of the dedicated organizers of the monthly Varmint Silhouette Match in Pala, California. Shooting that match with John as my mentor was one of the most enjoyable highlights of my shooting career.

John Adams Pala SilhouetteThose of us who knew John would tell you he was a generous, good-hearted man who had a real love for shooting. I am honored to say John was my friend, and I will forever be grateful for the things he did to help this site get off the ground, and to help many new shooters get started. When I had a chance to shoot at the Pala Varmint Silhouette match, John took the time to help practice with me, and he even provided the rifle (a wickedly accurate 22 Dasher) and the ammunition!

Many years ago, John was involved as an owner of the SAECO company that made presses and other reloading equipment. He had a vast knowledge of shooting hardware, and he never gave up his avid interest in shooting-related product design and engineering. He remained interested in new products and new techniques until his last days. Just a few weeks ago he called me to chat about new developments in spotting scopes.

John, Rest in Peace old friend. We’ll miss your presence at our matches in California. You were a generous soul and a true friend of the shooting sports. The shooting community is much diminished by your passing….

John Adams Pala Silhouette

John Adams Pala Silhouette

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November 18th, 2014

$10K Grand Prize (with 4 Guns) in Sig P320 Take-A-Shot Contest

Sig-Sauer has commenced a contest with a Grand Prize that should make any gun guy (or girl) drool. The lucky winner of Sig’s P320 Take-a-Shot Contest will get a custom-fitted Pelican case with TWO Handguns, a 9mm MPX PSB, a 300 BLK MCX Carbine, mags, and more. You even get two cases of ammo (9mm and 300 BLK). Along with this Grand Prize, Sig is giving away twenty (20) P320 pistols.

Sig Sauer P320 contest Take a Shot

The Grand Prize will be awarded in a contest between two finalists. One finalist will be chosen based on the popularity of a video he (or she) creates. In addition, the Top 10 video entrants will each win a P320 9mm pistol. The video’s theme should be: “The P320 is Epic because (fill in the blank)”. Submit your video between now and November 30, 2014.

The second way you can be “in the running” for the Grand Prize is to submit a Sweepstakes Entry Form (no purchase required). Even if you’re not selected for the Grand Prize competition, you can win a valuable Sig handgun. For 10 business days from December 1 – December 12, Sig will give away one Sig P320 9mm pistol every day. From the ten winners, one will be chosen at random to win a trip to Las Vegas to compete for the Grand Prize.

The two (2) semi-finalists (one from the Sweepstakes Drawing and one from the Video Contest) will each win 5 days and 4 nights in Las Vegas. There they will compete one-on-one at the SIG SAUER Range Day on January 19, 2015 in the P320 Take-A-Shot Competition for the $10K Grand Prize.

Sig Sauer P320 contest Take a Shot

The Ultimate SIG SAUER Collection, worth over $10,000, comes in a Pelican Case filled with:
SIG 9mm MPX PSB (with two extra mags), SIG 300 BLK MCX Carbine (with two extra mags), M11-A1 Pistol, MK25 Pistol, P226 Threaded Barrel, M11-A1 Threaded Barrel. In addition the Grand Prize winner receives One Case of 9mm V-Crown™ JHP Elite Performance Ammo, and One Case of 300 BLK Elite Performance Ammo.

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November 13th, 2014

USA Violent Crime Rate Falls to Lowest Level Since 1978

The FBI released its annual Crime in the United States report on November 10, 2014. This study revealed that, in 2013, the USA violent crime rate fell another 5.1 percent from 2012, so it is now at its lowest level since 1978. Moreover, the murder and manslaughter rate fell 4.4 percent, dropping to the lowest level since 1968.

violent crime FBI Report 2013 more guns less crime

This is very good news. From a public policy perspective, this is very important data that should help inform decision-making. The NSSF urges gun-owners to cite these statistics when unreasonable or irrational new gun control laws are proposed.

More Guns, Less Crime
While the crime rate has been dropping steadily for more than 20 years, the number of firearms in the hands of law-abiding Americans has been rising dramatically. So, statistics prove that we really have witnessed “more guns, less crime”. Earlier this year, the NSSF released a video that demonstrates this point very effectively:

63% of Americans Believe Gun in Home Increases Safety
A new Gallup survey released last week that found 63 percent of Americans believe that having a gun in the house makes it a safer place, a doubling of that number since 2000. The fact that more than six out of ten Americans have reached this conclusion demonstrates that the majority of Americans appreciate their Second Amendment rights to defend home and family.

What Counts as “Violent Crime”?
In the FBI’s Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) Program, violent crime is composed of four offenses: murder and nonnegligent manslaughter, rape, robbery, and aggravated assault. Violent crimes are defined in the UCR Program as those offenses which involve force or threat of force.

Long-Term USA Crime Trends
In 2013, an estimated 1,163,146 violent crimes occurred nationwide, a decrease of 4.4 percent from the 2012 estimate. When considering 5- and 10-year trends, the 2013 estimated violent crime total was 12.3 percent below the 2009 level and 14.5 percent below the 2004 level. There were an estimated 367.9 violent crimes per 100,000 inhabitants in 2013, a rate that declined 5.1 percent when compared with the 2012 estimated rate.

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November 10th, 2014

Safety Lesson: Bore Obstructions Cause Nasty Accidents

A Negligent Shooter Gets Lucky
Here we have a story so filled with negligent acts that I can only marvel that the shooter survived the experience. The photo and narrative were provided by the gunsmith who took in the repair job, my comments are in italics. It’s worth reading, we can’t get enough safety warnings in our hobby. — German Salazar, RiflemansJournal.com

Below is a sectioned barrel showing an 80gr Sierra that was fired in a .223 bolt action with a cleaning rod in the bore. Both the bullet and the rod are still in the bore.

Obstructed Barrel Explosion Accident
This article originally appeared in German Salazar’s RiflemansJournal.com website.

Description of Incident (with Commentary)
The shooter had a stuck case in his .223 chamber. The stuck case was actually a loaded round that didn’t fire. It wouldn’t extract because it was a .222 case that got mixed in with his .223 brass. [He had loaded the wrong brass.] I saw the loaded round with an 80gr bullet in it and a light primer strike. Negligent Act #1: Wrong brass was mixed in with the brass being reloaded.

The shooter removed the stuck case with a 3-piece aluminum rod. Negligent Act #2: Hammering out a loaded round with a cleaning rod. People have been killed doing this as the round can fire and drive the cleaning rod right into you. I remember one such incident about 5 years ago, the shooter was pounding out a stuck round, the cleaning rod went right through him, he didn’t survive.

The shooter didn’t notice only two segments of the cleaning rod came out when he removed it. Negligent Act #3: If you put anything at all down the barrel of a rifle you’d better make darn sure you got it all out before doing anything else!

He then chambered another round and fired it. Negligent act #4: If you’ve had a barrel obstruction of any kind, and if you’ve put something in the barrel, look through the barrel before proceeding! Within the past two years I know of an incident in which a benchrest shooter was killed in exactly this manner. The pressure built up and the rifle bolt came out of the receiver and into his chest.

The shooter is ‘OK’, but did not escape unscathed. He said there was a huge explosion and after regaining his senses found he was bleeding heavily from his forehead. The blood was thick enough that it ran in his eyes and he couldn’t see. In his words “I thought I was going to die”.

He has what looks like a pretty deep cut about an inch long on the side of his head, right in line with his right eye starting where the eye socket turns out to the side of the skull. And no telling what he’s got in the way of brass particles embedded in his forehead.

He was shooting on private property, and was alone when this happened. Negligent Act #5: Don’t shoot alone! Accidents happen, this is just one more example. If we could predict accidents, we wouldn’t have them. Always shoot with at least one other person.

He managed to get the bleeding stopped, or at least under control, packed his car and drove himself home without seeking immediate medical attention. Negligent Act #6: This one could have cost him his life after being lucky enough to survive the incident. There’s no way to know what’s happened just after an incident like this. He should have been at a hospital getting checked for shrapnel in the head.

The rod and slug could not be driven out. Since the barrel had a high round count there was no point in trying to salvage it. Note that the aluminum rod is expanded to a tight fit in the bore for the first couple inches. The base of the bullet is a little over 2″ from the mouth of the chamber.

What we’ve seen here is negligence and an absolute indifference to the established rules of safe reloading and gun handling, from start to finish, capped off with the shooter’s foolish avoidance of medical treatment. This shooter is lucky to be alive, but he’s surely used up all his luck. Don’t assume you’ll be so fortunate.

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November 10th, 2014

Today Marks 239th Birthday of U.S. Marine Corps

Today marks the 239th anniversary of the founding of the U.S. Marine Corps. At Tun Tavern in Philadelphia on November 10, 1775, the Marine Corps was formed. At a ceremony marking the Marine’s “birthday”, (held at the Marine Corp Air Station in Yuma, AZ), Cpl. Uriel Avendano provided perspective: “The word Marine spans time, places, people, personalities and exploits. The faces of the Marines of the past tell the story of a tough, disciplined and proud people who loved the challenge and gave nothing but their best. Today the uniform has changed, but the motives remain the same… [O]ur duty remains the same. We are ready for anything, at any time and in any place.”

Happy Birthday, Devil Dogs… and Semper Fi.

Marine Corps Flag

U.S. Marine Corps Anniversary Soldiers of the Sea

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November 8th, 2014

Hammer Time: Father and Daughter Enjoy IBS Benchrest Matches

Story by Jaime Hammer, IBS Social Media Manager
Paul Hammer was introduced to benchrest rifle shooting by his friend Bill Adcox at the Greenville Gun Club (in Greenville, SC) about five years ago. He has been an avid skeet shooter for most of his life, but his daughter never fell in love with that sport. The first time he took her to the rifle range with him, she was hooked. She loved the precision of it and that it’s very relaxing. If you haven’t been able to tell by now, I’m his daughter. What began slowly as a fun hobby that we could enjoy together picked up speed a year and a half ago, when we went to our first IBS match, a 100/200 yard match at Piedmont Gun Club. From then on, he spent much of his free time learning about the sport, from techniques to types of guns to how to reload his own ammunition.

Paul Hammer and Daughter Jaime Enjoy Time at the Range Together…
Paul and Jaime Hammer

He frequently practices or competes in both group and score matches at 100, 200, and 600 yards at Piedmont Gun Club, Polk County Gun Club, and Greenville Gun Club. This year, he even competed for the first time in the annual Groundhog and Egg Shoot in Hickory, NC hosted by Bull’s Eye Sporting Goods. His smallest group, made while practicing at 100 yards with a 6 PPC, was 0.17 inch. His best score, made at 100 yards at the NC State Championship with a 6 PPC, was 249 with 8 Xs (he commented that he “made a perfect score with 5 Xs on the sighter target!”).

He said, “For me, benchrest rifle shooting is enjoyable because there’s so much to learn, and the people you meet along the way are nice and helpful. It’s fun and challenging.” Although he always tries and wants to shoot well, at the end of the day, he just enjoys the sport, spending time with his daughter, and meeting new people.

Paul and Jaime Hammer

Part of his benchrest education has come from helping plan benchrest matches for Polk County Gun Club. Last September, in conjunction with Tony Moss, Paul began organizing monthly 100/300 yard groundhog and egg shoots. In doing so, he has learned more about shooting and what it takes to put together a successful benchrest rifle match. Paul and Tony are currently working with the board of directors to improve Polk County Gun Club’s rifle range and install target backers to get approval to hold IBS matches there.

If you would like to contact Paul to discuss the monthly Polk County Gun Club rifle matches or chat about general benchrest topics, send email to: paulhammer [at] bellsouth.net.

Photos by Jaime Hammer.

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November 8th, 2014

Remington Defense Secures Two Big Sniper System Contracts

Remington Defense has secured two major defense contracts for sniper rifles and chassis kits. First, the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) has awarded Remington a contract to provide 443 Precision Sniper Rifles (“PSR”) chambered in .338 Lapua Magnum and 446 PSR caliber conversion kits in both .300 Winchester Magnum and .308 Winchester. The order was placed under the competitively awarded PSR Systems contract. The PSR is a sniper rifle system with modular barrel length and caliber conversion capabilities. Remington has commenced full production of the PSR after successful prototype and low rate initial production (LRIP) testing.

Remington PSR Sniper Rifle System
Remington defense socom PSR

The Remington PSR combines a user-adjustable folding stock, free-float handguard, and the potential to change barrel lengths and calibers within minutes.
Remington PSR sniper rifle socom dod

Marines Order Modular M40A6 Stocks
The U.S. Marine Corps Systems Command has awarded Remington Defense a contract to provide up to 2,000 modular stocks, spares, and magazines in support of the Marine’s M40 Sniper Rifle Modular Stock program. The stocks will be used to upgrade the Marines’ current M40A5 rifles. The new rifle system, designated the M40A6, features a folding stock plus full-length rails to hold optics and night vision systems. “We were excited to compete for and win this critical Marine Corps program,” said Greg Baradat, Director of U.S. Military Sales for Remington Defense. “The Marine Corps tested each bidder’s product to high standards, and we are proud to have exceeded their performance criteria.”

USMC Marine Corps m40 m40a6 Remington modular stock

USMC Sniper Rifle M40 PSR socom“We are proud to deliver the ultimate precision sniper systems on the planet,” said Greg Baradat, Director of U.S. Military Sales for Remington Defense. “The move to full rate production successfully demonstrates the quality, accuracy, and reliability of the system to our valuable Department of Defense customers.”

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November 7th, 2014

CMP Launches Updated Website with Useful Features

The Civilian Marksmanship Program (CMP) has completely overhauled its website. The new site boasts over 300 pages of content covering 40+ CMP programs. In addition, it is easier than ever to purchase items through the CMP E-Store. Check out the changes at: www.thecmp.org.

With a more modern, tablet-friendly design, the site is easier to navigate, with the most frequently used CMP services placed “front and center”. The site is divided into seven main categories: Safety, Sales & Services, Competitions, Clubs, Air Gun, Training & Tech, and Communications. Click on any of these categories, and additional content displays. The Sales page now links items to the CMP E-Store, simplifying the online ordering process.

CMP Civilian Marksmanship Program website www.thecmp.org

Competition Tracking
The CMP’s Competition and Club Tracker is now integrated into the CMP website. Users can now easily access a list of upcoming matches or a list of clubs. You no longer have to bounce out to a different website with a different interface. This represents a pretty big change that should benefit site users.

First Shot Online Magazine
The First Shot, the CMP’s popular webzine, is now an integral part of the CMP website, allowing articles to be located through keywords in the Search feature. This should help users access the scores of useful articles in The First Shot’s archive.

Not Ready for Prime Time?
Editor’s Comment: The new CMP website is live, but there are some issues. Sometimes it takes two or three tries to launch the site, some features are very slow, and we are still observing some database errors. We expect the programmers are working hard to speed up and optimize the site over the next few weeks. Hopefully the new CMP site will soon become more responsive. Generally, the design changes have been positive, making the site more user-friendly. However, it appears that some glitches still need to be resolved.

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November 6th, 2014

Texas International Firearms Festival This Weekend in Austin

Ok, here’s the deal. Get yourself to the Austin, Texas area this weekend, and you can shoot a bunch of new guns from numerous major manufacturers. At the first annual Texas International Firearms Festival, avid shooters can try and buy the latest guns and gear. With more than 30 dedicated gun bays and dozens of ammo and accessory retailers, the Texas International Firearms Festival proves the old adage that everything is bigger and better in Texas.

This isn’t your run-of-the-mill gunshow where you can only look at a bunch of guns indoors. At the Texas Firearms Festival this weekend you can actually “test drive” dozens of new firearms. Here are some of the big-name gun-makers offering firearms at the Festival: Barrett, Beretta, Cabot Guns, FN Herstal, Henry Repeating Arms, Sig Sauer, Tracking Point, Walther, Winchester.

The Festival isn’t free — but the price is more than reasonable considering the hours of fun you can have. A one-day pass, which includes the cost of ammo, is $59.00. A weekend pass for two full days of shooting is just $95.00 (ammo included). Purchase tickets at TexasGunFest.com.

Festival Location and Directions
The Festival will be held at the Best of the West Shooting Range in Liberty Hill, Texas. The address is 19500 W. SH 29, Liberty Hill, TX 78642. For driving directions, use this interactive Google map:

Our friend (and ace sharp-shooter) Kirsten Weiss will be at the Festival this weekend acting as a spokesperson. Maybe you can meet Kirsten and learn how she makes those amazing trick shots featured on her popular YouTube Channel.

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November 4th, 2014

The F Zone: Nightforce Photo Gallery from 2014 F-Class Nationals

F-Class Nationals Phoeniz Berger Arizona

nightforce opticsThe folks from Nightforce Optics attended the 2014 F-Class National Championships in Phoenix last week. Sean Murphy and his Nightforce colleagues snapped a ton of photos of F-TR and F-Open shooters in action. You can see over 300 images from the Nationals on the Nightforce Facebook Page. Below are some of our favorite shots, with captions. Facebook users can access the full F-Class Nationals Gallery.

Click any image to see large-size version

Here’s winning 2014 F-TR National Champion James Crofts, with his PR&T-built rig.
F-Class Nationals Phoeniz Berger Arizona

Young female shooter uses SEB JoyPod, a coaxial, joystick-actuated bipod. Yes it is F-TR legal.
F-Class Nationals Phoeniz Berger Arizona

Yes, you CAN shoot F-Open with a Tube-gun. This modular chassis sports a Delrin bag-rider.
F-Class Nationals Phoeniz Berger Arizona

With the rising popularity of F-TR compeition, shooters are adapting Benchrest-style stocks to use a bipod. Here’s a McMillan Bench stock fitted with a bipod.
F-Class Nationals Phoeniz Berger Arizona

F-Class Nationals Phoeniz Berger Arizona

It was hot in Phoenix. Notice that the shooter covered his ammo as well as his head.
F-Class Nationals Phoeniz Berger Arizona

“See, Focus, Trust” — One competitor wrote his mantra on his ammo box lid.
F-Class Nationals Phoeniz Berger Arizona

Here ballistics Guru Bryan Litz shoots a John Pierce-built F-TR rig. This uses a low-profile, Benchrest-style carbon composite stock.
F-Class Nationals Phoeniz Berger Arizona

Shiraz Balolia had a very patriotic rig and a blinged-out tripod front rest.
F-Class Nationals Phoeniz Berger Arizona

Cactus and morning balloon ascents before the wind starts. Yes, this is Ben Avery…
F-Class Nationals Phoeniz Berger Arizona

All photos copyright Nightforce Optics 2014, used with permission.

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November 4th, 2014

Today is Election Day — Participate in the Process

Here’s a reminder that today is Election Day across the nation. This morning your Editor took the time to hop in the car and go cast my vote. You should too. We live in a democracy — it’s important that all concerned, voting-age citizens participate in the process. Remember that you have no right to complain about politicians (or their policies) if you haven’t exercised your right to vote.

Not Sure Where to Vote? CLICK HERE for Directories of Polling Places, State-by-State.

2014 Election November Gunvote

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