January 19th, 2021

Jumbo Playing Card Targets — FREE to Download

NRA Playing Card targets

With so many Americans locked down under governmental “Stay at Home” orders, we know folks may be playing cards for entertainment. Well here’s another card game you can play — but with rifles and pistols. If you can get to a public range that is still open, or if you’re lucky enough to be able to shoot on your own property or BLM lands, here’s a unique set of Playing Card Targets, courtesy of the NRA.

A while back, the NRA Blog has published a nice set of super-sized playing card targets. These boast a variety of aiming points (large and small) so they work well for rifles as well as pistols. On the Queen of Diamonds, aim for the large bull-style designs in the “red zone” or aim for the smaller dots on the periphery. For a real challenge, try to shoot each one of the 26 small red diamonds in the curved, central white stripes.

On the Five of Clubs target, you can aim for the smaller club symbols, or shoot for the orange, purple, and green “dripping paint” bulls in the large, central club. The Ace of Spades target offers a colored bullseye in the center, plus a very small bullseye in the letter “C”. That should provide extra challenge for those of you with very accurate rifles. Enjoy these targets.


Click Any Image to Download Printable PDF Target:

NRA Playing Card target NRA Playing Card target
NRA Playing Card target NRA Playing Card target
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January 17th, 2021

Click No Bang — Dry-Fire Training with Kirsten Joy Weiss

kirsten weiss dry fire anschutz smallbore

Kirsten Joy Weiss has created a useful video about Dry-Fire practice. Dry-Fire is a method of training without a live round in the chamber. Dry-Firing is effective, Kirsten explains, because “it eliminates all the extra noise and messages that you get when you fire a live round. Without recoil, without the sound of a shot going off etc., all you hear is the click of the trigger. This allows you to focus on your sight picture and your trigger press.” This the lastest installment in Kirsten’s ‘How to Shoot Awesomely’ series. Kisten says: “I hope it helps you, and keep on aiming true!”

kirsten weiss dry fire anschutz smallbore

Dennis DeMille High PowerThe Benefits of Dry-Fire Training
If you are not doing Dry-Fire practice yet, then it’s time to start. Dry-Fire training is essential to the sling disciplines, and very useful for F-Class. Dennis DeMille, a national Service Rifle Champion, told us that, for every minute he spent in actual competition, he would spend hours practicing without ammunition. While in the USMC, Dennis would practice in the barracks, working on his hold and dry-firing:

“The most important thing is to spend time off the range practicing. Most of what I learned as a High Power shooter I learned without ammunition — just spending time dry firing and doing holding exercises. Holding exercises will really identify the weak parts of your position. The primary purpose of dry firing is to get you used to shooting an empty rifle. If you can shoot a loaded rifle the same way you shoot an empty rifle then eventually you will become a High Master.”

Dry-Fire Training Can Benefit Benchrest Shooters
What about benchrest? Well, we’ve found that Dry-Fire sessions can even benefit benchresters — it can help reveal flaws in your trigger technique, or inconsistencies in the way you address the rifle from shot to shot. With the gun set up with your front rest and rear bag, if you see the scope’s cross-hairs wiggle a lot when you pull the trigger, you need to work on your technique. Also, dry-fire practice can help you learn to work the bolt more smoothly so you don’t disturb the gun on the bags.

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January 13th, 2021

Shooting Sling Options and Sling Set-Up Explained

Creedmoor Sling

Creedmoor Sports has long been an important gear source for serious sling shooters, including Service Rifle and Palma competitors. Creedmoor has a wide variety of slings available, with features to suit particular disciplines as well as personal preferences. Chose leather, webbing, or synthetic materials. Here are some popular competition slings sold by Creedmoor Sports, along with some helpful videos that cover sling selection, set-up, and adjustment.

Dennis DeMille Creedmoor Sports Rifle Sling video training set-up

If you want to learn more about setting up your sling properly for position shooting, here are some tips from Dennis DeMille, a past Service Rifle Champion (and former Creedmoor Sports Gen’l Manager). Dennis explains how to choose a sling, and then how to adjust it to fit properly (second video).

Looking at Sling Types — Comparing the Features

In this video Dennis showcases a large variety of shooting slings. He explains the strong points of each type so you can choose the sling best suited to your discipline and shooting style.

Creedmoor Sling

Jensen’s Deluxe 3.5 Cuff Sling

Creedmoor Sling

Creedmoor No-Pulse Sling

Creedmoor Sling

Jim Owens No-Pulse Service Sling

Creedmoor Sling

Ron Brown Heavy Leather Sling

Creedmoor Sling

Gehman No-Pulse Sling

Creedmoor Sling

Turner All Weather Sling (3 Colors)

Brandon Green Sling shooting
SFC Brandon Green, 2018 Nat’l High Power Champion. Brandon, one of the nation’s best “hard-holders”, demonstrates proper use of sling in prone position.

Setting-Up a Leather Service Rifle Sling for Competition

So you made the mistake of disassembling your leather service rifle sling, or are intimidated about how to use one? In this Creedmoor Sports InfoZone video, former Creedmoor G.M. Dennis DeMille explains how to set up and use a sling. The covers the basics — Dennis starts with a totally disassembled leather service rifle sling and shows you how to set it up properly.

Tip: “Many shooters shy away from using a leather sling because they have never been taught how to use one. That’s unfortunate. In my opinion a leather sling offers more support than a web sling, which is important when competing with the heavier-than-normal rifles.”

Tip: “Putting the Frogs in different hole will change the amount of added elevation a sling provides.”

And Here Are Two Good Guidebooks for Sling Shooters:

Creedmoor Sling

Slings & Things
by Glen Zediker

Creedmoor Sling

The Leather Sling & Shooting Positions
by MSGT Jim Owens

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January 13th, 2021

Legendary Indoor Accuracy — Secrets of the Houston Warehouse

houston warehouse 6ppc secrets
Kelbly Light Varmint PPC Rifle from Gunbroker.com.

From the late ’70s through 1983, a huge, concrete-walled warehouse in Houston was used for benchrest testing. Virgil King and Bob Fisher set up a bullet-catching backstop at the end of a 30-yard-wide, 325-yard-long fire lane that remained unobstructed even when the warehouse was in use. This allowed accuracy tests in virtually perfect “no wind” conditions. Over a six-year period, about 30 shooters were invited to test their rifles. The results were amazing, with numerous “zero groups” being shot in the facility. Many of the lessons learned in the legendary Houston Warehouse still help benchresters achieve better accuracy today.

Dave Scott wrote a superb article, the Secrets of the Houston Warehouse which appeared in a special issue of Precision Shooting Magazine. That issue has long been sold out, but, thankfully, Secrets of the Houston Warehouse is now on the web: CLICK HERE to READ Secrets of the Houston Warehouse.

Houston WarehouseDave Scott explains why the Warehouse was so unique:

“Over a period of six years, the levels of accuracy achieved in the Houston Warehouse went beyond what many precision shooters thought possible for lightweight rifles shot from sandbags and aimed shot-to-shot by human eye. For the first time, a handful of gifted, serious experimenters — armed with the very best performing rifles (with notable exceptions) — could boldly venture into the final frontiers of rifle accuracy, a journey made possible by eliminating the baffling uncertainties of conditions arising from wind and mirage. Under these steel skies, a shooter could, without question, confirm the absolute limits of accuracy of his rifle, or isolate the source of a problem. In the flawlessly stable containment of the Houston Warehouse … a very few exceptional rifles would display the real stuff, drilling repeated groups measuring well below the unbelievably tiny .100″ barrier. The bulk of rifles, however, embarrassed their owners.”

Scott’s article also reveals some interesting technical points: “One thing that IS important is that the bullet be precisely seated against the lands. T.J. Jackson reported this fact in the May 1987 issue of Precision Shooting. In a letter to the Editor, T.J. wrote, ‘…in all our testing in that Houston warehouse… and the dozens and dozens of groups that Virgil King shot in there ‘in the zeroes’… he NEVER fired a single official screamer group when he was ‘jumping’ bullets. All his best groups were always seated into the lands, or at the very least… touching the lands. Virgil said his practice was to seat the bullets so the engraving was half as long as the width of the lands. He noticed an interesting phenomenon with rifles that could really shoot: if the bullets were seated a little short and the powder charge was a bit on the light side, the groups formed vertically. As he seated the bullets farther out and increased the powder charge, the groups finally became horizontal. If he went still farther, the groups formed big globs. He said the trick is to find the midway point between vertical and horizontal. That point should be a small hole.”

You should definitely read the complete article, as it provides many more fascinating insights, including shooting technique, barrel cleaning, neck-turning, and case prep.

EDITOR: Will the lessons of the Houston Warehouse work elsewhere? Is this repeatable magic? We remind readers that what T.J. Jackson discovered worked for his barrels, his cartridge type, and his choice of bullets. Jumping bullets can definitely produce good results in other cartridge types with bullets such as Berger Hybrids. Still, the Houston results are intriguing. Any time someone shoots in the “zeros” one should pay attention to how that was achieved.

houston warehouse 6ppc secrets

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January 12th, 2021

How to Affiliate Your Club with the CMP

CMP Affiliate Club
Click Here for complete 24-page guide.

The CMP cooperates with a network of affiliated shooting clubs, teams, summer camps, and associations in every state in the USA. CMP-affiliated organizations offer firearms safety training and marksmanship courses to their members as well as to residents in their communities. Affiliated clubs also offer opportunities for rifle practice and competition shooting. CLICK HERE for 24-page Guide to Forming a CMP Affiliated Marksmanship Club.

The CMP supports affiliated organizations with a series of programs. There are free training publications and newsletters. CMP trained and certified Master Instructors can lead training clinics in their home clubs. The CMP also offers discounted ammunition and rifles suitable for target training.

CMP marksmanship program civilian affiliate affiliated clubs discount purchase program

The Civilian Marksmanship Program (CMP) offers a discount program for Affiliated Clubs and individuals. This allows discounted purchase of airguns and rimfire match rifles. This can help programs for schools, junior clubs, teams, and camps. The discounts are significant. For example a Savage Mark II-FVT .22 LR Rifle can be purchased for just $257.00, a 46% savings over the $480.00 regular price!

The CMP also sanctions and supports competitions and training clinics for junior shooters and adults that are conducted by affiliates. CLICK HERE for 24-page Guide to Forming a CMP Shooting Club.

WHO MAY APPLY FOR AFFILIATION WITH CMP?
Affiliation is open to a variety of organizations including shooting and sportsmans’ clubs, junior shooting clubs, high school and college teams, 4-H clubs, ROTC and JROTC Units, Boy Scout troops and BSA Venturing Crews, Veterans Organizations, and similar organizations.

A shooting club or organization may affiliate as any one of the following organizations: College Shooting Club or Team, Junior Club, Senior Club, Senior Club with Junior Division, School Shooting Team (High School, Middle School, JROTC etc.), Youth Camp.


Photo: Camp Josepho Boy Scouts facility in California.

CMP Affiliate Club

CMP Affiliate Club

HOW TO APPLY TO AFFILIATE WITH CMP
Download and fill out the CMP Affiliation Application or use the online CMP Affiliation Form. You need to attach documents for your organization (such as by-laws, articles of incorporation or other governing rules) with the application. Provide payment for the first annual dues of $30.00 (Note: JROTC units, 4-H Shooting Sports Clubs and BSA organizations may affiliate at no cost). Send the application materials to:

CMP Affiliate Relations
P.O. Box 576
Port Clinton, Ohio 43452

A Certificate of Affiliation and additional information will be forwarded when the club application is processed. If you have questions, contact CMP Affiliate Relations at (419) 635-2141, x753, or e-mail clubs[at]thecmp.org.
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January 11th, 2021

IBS Annual Meeting on January 16, 2021 — Register Now

IBS Winter Annual Meeting Jeff Stover Virtual Zoom meeting january 16 2021

The International Benchrest Shooters (IBS) will hold its Annual Meeting this month. It will be a virtual meeting, done via the Zoom internet service. The 2021 IBS Annual Meeting will be held online, via Zoom, on Saturday, January 16th at 9:00 a.m. Eastern. Outgoing President Jeff Stover tells us “This is an IBS meeting but anyone [with an interest in benchrest competition] can get on the Zoom virtual meeting.”

To participate in the meeting, you’ll need to Register with Zoom. Here is the link to register:

CLICK HERE to Register for IBS Annual Meeting on ZOOM »

IBS Winter Annual Meeting Jeff Stover Virtual Zoom meeting january 16 2021

Jeff Stover notes that members can send in questions for the meeting: “Participants can use [email] to send in questions which I (or someone) hope to be able to answer online. The email address for questions will be sent out (via email) to those who register. Also there will be a ‘raise hand’ feature and chat with the administrator function.”

There will also be specific agenda items to be discussed at the meeting. These agenda items will be voted on, by the membership, on-line after February 1, 2021.

IBS Annual Meeting Zoom january 16 2021

After the meeting outgoing President Jeff Stover, who has ably served as IBS president for 12 years, will turn over his position to new President David Matthew of North Carolina. And IBS Treasurer Bill Gebhardt will retire after 28 years of service. The new Treasurer will be Sally Bauer of Kansas.

IBS Winter Annual Meeting Jeff Stover Virtual Zoom meeting january 16 2021

The IBS anticipates that some of the IBS Shooter of the Year winners will participate, and perhaps share some of their secrets of success.

IBS Winter Annual Meeting Jeff Stover Virtual Zoom meeting january 16 2021

IBS Winter Annual Meeting Jeff Stover Virtual Zoom meeting january 16 2021

Register here for IBS Annual Meeting on Saturday, January 16, 2021:
Zoom Meeting Registration Page.

IBS Winter Annual Meeting Jeff Stover Virtual Zoom meeting january 16 2021

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January 11th, 2021

CMP Adds Smallbore Rifle Postal Match For 2021

CMP smallbore postal match orion scoring

The Civilian Marksmanship Program (CMP) is running a new Smallbore Postal Competition this spring. The event, open to both Adults and Juniors, will feature 3-Position and Prone matches, fired from a distance of 50 feet. Individuals and clubs can register and fire in both events. There are two (2) specific events:

3-Position (3×20, Kneeling, Prone, Standing) – USA 50 Foot Target
Prone (60 Shots – Sling and F-Class) – USA 50 Foot Target

The CMP will print customized targets for each registered competitor and mail them to the club or individual. After firing, your targets shall be returned to the CMP or you may opt to score your own targets using the Orion Scoring System and send results to the CMP electronically. The cost for each competitor is $5.00 per event. Payment must be received before targets are mailed.

INFORMATION LINKS
Postal Match Online Registration
Postal Match Results Link
2020-2021 CMP Smallbore Rifle Competition Rules

What’s a Postal Match? The concept is that shooters compete in different locations and then “mail in” their targets, hence the term “postal match”. Of course these days the results can also be transmitted electronically, but the concept is the same — shooters around the country complete a specific course of fire and then the results are tabulated, with final rankings based on scores. Competitors can compete individually or in groups, at the location of their choice. Competitors can shoot the targets at a time of their choosing, but all targets must be RECEIVED by the CMP no later than April 16, 2021.

“The CMP has a lot of experience with conducting postal competitions, and with everything going on in the world today, running a smallbore postal seems like a logical step for our program,” said Brad Donoho, CMP smallbore manager. “We’re happy to be able to provide a place for smallbore athletes everywhere to continue their growth on the range.”

CMP smallbore postal match competition 2021
Smallbore shooter Lauren Phillips won the Junior Olympic Shooting Championships in 2014.

Important Dates for the CMP Smallbore Postal Competition:

January 11, 2021 – Online Registration Begins
March 23, 2021 – Online Registration Ends
April 16, 2021 – Targets must be received by CMP
April 19, 2021 – Preliminary Results Posted
April 23, 2021 – All results are final

To register or to learn more, visit the CMP’s Postal Match Webpage: https://thecmp.org/competitions/cmp-smallbore-program/cmp-smallbore-postal-program/

If you want to get started in 3-Position smallbore shooting, read this Introduction to 3-P Rifle Competition by U.S. Olympian Matt Emmons. For starters, Click image below to launch a BIG full-screen PDF file.

Matt Emmons Smallbore position rifle

CMP smallbore postal match orion scoring

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January 8th, 2021

Eight Great Books for Handgun Owners

Pistol Marksmanship training book
Jessie Harrison — one of the greatest female pistol shooters on the planet. In the video below, Jessie offers good tips on safe handgun mag changes.

In this Pro Tip Video, Jessie Harrison talks about Dry-Fire Pistol Training:

One of our Forum members asked: “Are there any good books on pistol marksmanship? I’m looking for a book that covers techniques and concepts….” Here are eight recommended titles that can make you a better pistol shooter. These books run the gamut from basic handgun training to CCW to Olympic-level bullseye shooting.

Pistol Marksmanship training book 1911 race gunGood Guidebooks for Pistol Shooters
There are actually many good books which can help both novice and experienced pistol shooters improve their skills and accuracy. For new pistol shooters, we recommend the NRA Guide to the Basics of Pistol Shooting. This full-color publication is the designated student “textbook” for the NRA Basic Pistol Shooting Course.

If you’re interested in bullseye shooting, you should get the USAMU’s The Advanced Pistol Marksmanship Manual. This USAMU pistol marksmanship guide has been a trusted resource since the 1960s. Action Shooters should read Practical Shooting: Beyond Fundamentals by Brian Enos, and Practical Pistol by Ben Stoeger. Brian Enos is a well-known pistol competitor with many titles. Ben Stoeger is a two-time U.S. Practical Pistol shooting champion. Julie Golob’s popular SHOOT book covers pistol marksmanship, along with 3-Gun competition. Julie holds multiple national pistol shooting titles.

concealed carry ccw pistol book

For CCW holders carrying defensive pistols we recommend two good guidebooks. Concealed Carry Class: The ABCs of Self-Defense Tools and Tactics is like a complete CCW class, covering both gun handling and legal issues. To understand when, and how, you have a right to defensive firearms use, read Massad Ayoob’s Deadly Force: Understanding Your Right to Self Defense.

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January 5th, 2021

Dance of the Aussie Windflags — Slow-Motion Windflag Vidoes


Photo of Aussie Wind Flags courtesy BRT Shooters Supply.

A while back our Aussie friend Stuart Elliot of BRT Shooters Supply recently filmed some interesting videos at the QTS range in Brisbane, Australia. Stuart told us: “I was shooting in an Air Gun Benchrest match here in Brisbane, Australia. I finished my target early and was awaiting the cease fire and took a short, slow-motion video of windflag behavior.” You may be surprised by the velocity changes and angle swings that occur, even over a relatively short distance (just 25 meters from bench to target).

Here are windflags in slow motion:

The flags show in the videos are “Aussie Wind Flags”, developed by Stuart Elliot. These are sold in the USA by Butch Lambert, through Shadetree Engineering.

Here is a video in real time:

Stuart says this video may surprise some shooters who don’t use windflags: “Many people say the wind doesn’t matter. Well it sure does — whether for an airgun at 25 meters or a long range centerfire at 1,000.” This video illustrates how much the wind can change direction and velocity even in a small area.

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January 4th, 2021

Precision Stick-On Targets — Roll of 250 for $12.49

benchrest target adhesive stick-on load development Midsouth 6x4

Here’s a handy product from Midsouth Shooters Supply: 250 self-adhesive Benchrest Targets on a convenient roll. Not just for benchrest competitors, these handy stick-on targets work great for anyone doing load development. We’ve used then and they work well. Each target offers a precision 1/4″ grid at the top with diamond aiming box below. This is similar to official targets used in Benechrest matches, with the addition of the upper grid lines which allow you to instantly estimate group size. These targets also include an area to list your load components. Midsouth Shooters sells the 250-target roll for $12.49. That works out to just five cents per target!

This target was designed for benchrest shooting, developing new loads or cataloging existing ones. This easy-to-use target has a 1/4″ grid pattern at the top which helps measure groups. The vertical aiming square at the bottom helps align the cross hairs of your scope for consistent shot placement. At the very bottom of the target there is room to record your reloading information. Each Target sticker measures 6″ x 4″ with a 4.5″ x 2.5″ printed area.

benchrest target adhesive stick-on load development Midsouth 6x4

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January 1st, 2021

Five Fun & Games Targets for New Year’s Days 2021

shooting paper printable fly flies target

Today marks a New Year. 2020 is behind us (thank goodness!). We should start “Having Fun in 2021″. With that spirit, here are five “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 “making change” by hitting the right combination of coins. 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.

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.

American Coins Target — Make Change

shooting paper printable U.S. Coins quarters dimes nickels pennies target

This unique American Coin Target features actual-sized Eisenhower Dollars, Susan B. Anthony Dollars, and Kennedy Half Dollars in the top row. Below are rows of Quarters, Dimes, Nickels, and Pennies in descending order. NOTE: A U.S. Quarter has a diameter of approximately 1 inch, so it’s One MOA at 100 Yards. NOTE: When printing, select “100%” value and landscape mode — NOT “fit to page”! That will keep the dimensions of the coins accurate. Combining math with marksmanship, this target lets kids practice their math skills while having fun. Choose a money amount (such as $2.57 or $3.73), and “make change” by shooting a combination of coins.

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.

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 31st, 2020

On New Year’s Eve — Kirsten’s Champagne Bottle Trick Shot

As we release this story, the New Year — 2021 — is just 12 hours away. Perhaps you’ve been eagerly awaiting for the big event, getting champagne (and sparklers) to celebrate the New Year. 2021 will hopefully be a much better year than 2020, what with the Pandemic, riots in the cities, and controversial elections. To mark the dawning of 2021, with hope for a much better year, we expect many folks will open a bottle of champagne. You could pop the cork the traditional way, or read on and learn how to release the celebratory champagne with a rifle shot, as demonstrated by the talented Kirsten Joy Weiss.

Kirsten Weiss Champagne Trick Shot

Recently at Thorton Winery in Temecula, California, a champagne vintner, we were shown the best way to open a champagne bottle. We were told you should hold the bottle nose up at an angle then rotate the BOTTLE slowly while holding the cork. That works great… but it’s not as stunning as the way sharpshooter Kirsten Joy Weiss opens a bottle of bubbly.

Kirsten Weiss Champagne Trick ShotA former competitive smallbore rifle shooter, ace trigger-puller Kirsten Joy Weiss tried a special New Year’s trick shot a few seasons back. In keeping with the festive New Year’s spirit, Kirsten attempted to shoot the cork off a champagne bottle. After a few unsuccessful tries, she managed to hit the cork with at least two shots. But alas the cork did not fly. She actually hit the cork, but it did not release. That was surprising…

Undaunted, Kirsten changed her strategy, aiming for the neck of the bottle. This duplicates the process of “sabering” a champagne bottle — a method of liberating the bubbly by slashing off the end of the neck with a blade. Aiming for the neck of the bottle, Kirsten successfully blew off the top of the bottle. (Apparently, when “sabering” it is actually the pressure within the champagne bottle which does most of the work).

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December 29th, 2020

Mental Game — Thinking Your Way to Success

praslick emil usamu mental training game marksmanship

SFC Emil Praslick III is now retired from the U.S. Army, but he left a great legacy as one of the USAMU’s greatest coaches and team leaders. A highly-respected wind expert, Praslick also was known for his ability to help his shooters master the “mental game”, which is so important at the highest levels of competition. Here is an article from the CMP Archives in which Praslick explains how to focus your mind to achieve greater success.

Thinking Your Way to Success by SFC Emil Praslick III (Ret.)
Why does it seem that the same small group of shooters wins the majority of the matches? Within the Army Marksmanship Unit’s Service Rifle Team, the same effect applies. On a team filled with uncommonly talented shooters, the same two or three are consistently at the top of the final results bulletin. What is the difference among shooters who are technically equal? Confidence. A confident shooter is free to execute his shots without the fear of failure, i.e. shooting a poor shot.

Negative thoughts (can’t, won’t be able to, etc.) will destroy a skilled performance. The mind’s focus will not be on executing the task, but on projecting fear and self-doubt. Fear is the enemy, confidence is the cure.

Emil Praslick III

How does a shooter on the eve of an important match (the President’s or NTI, for example) attain the confidence needed to perform up to his potential? A pre-competition mental plan can assist in acquiring that positive mental state. The plan can be broken down into a few phases.

Build a feeling of preparedness. Developing and executing a plan to organize your equipment and pre-match routine will aid you in feeling prepared on match day.

Avoid negative and stressful thoughts. Focusing on “winning” the match or shooting for a specific score (like making the “cut” or making the President’s 100) can cause undue stress. Good shooters focus on aspects that are within their control: their sight picture, their sight alignment, their position. Each shot should be treated as an individual event.

Train stage-specific tasks during your practice sessions. Instead of shooting matches or practice matches only, include some drills that focus on your problem areas. Training in this manner will assist your level of confidence.

As part of your pre-match routine, imagine yourself shooting perfect shots. Visualize getting into the perfect position, acquiring a perfect sight picture, and perfect trigger control.

Emil Praslick mental game advice

Let a feeling of calm and well-being wash over you. Spend a few minutes alone thinking positive thoughts. Many shooters use their favorite music to help build the mood.

Once you develop your pre-competition mental plan, stick with it. Through your training you will develop the physical skills to shoot higher scores. The confidence you will need to apply them in match conditions will grow as you develop into a complete shooter; both physically and mentally.

Click HERE for More USAMU Shooting Tips

The USAMU’s article archives are a great resource for competitive shooters. Click HERE for more excellent instructional articles by Emil Praslick and other USAMU Coaches and shooters. You’ll find articles on Wind-Reading, Fitness, Equipment, Shooting Positions, Shooting Techniques, Match Strategies and much more.

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December 27th, 2020

300 FREE Tactical Targets for Precision Rifle Fans

AccurateShooter Free downloadable tactical storm print targets shooting paper PDF

AccurateShooter’s Target Page provides over 50 FREE downloadable targets. You’ll find all types of targets — sight-in targets, varmint targets, rimfire targets, bullseye targets, tactical targets, load development targets and more. CLICK HERE for all our free targets, including our popular LOAD DEV target.

FREE Accuracy Precision Rifle Shooting Target

On this load development target, all your load data fits neatly in the boxes under each target. The diamonds have 1/2″ sides and you can align your cross-hairs on the horizontal and vertical lines. When we test, we crank in a little elevation, setting the point-of-impact higher. That way our shots fall in the gray circles, leaving the red diamonds intact for precise aiming.

Storm Tactical Targets — Hundreds of FREE, Printable Targets

AccurateShooter Free downloadable tactical storm print targets shooting paper PDFIf you want an even greater selection of targets, specialized for PRS and NRL shooters, Storm Tactical offers a vast collection of tactical targets, available in three different versions: MOA, MIL Yards, and MIL Meters. Storm Tactical also has a rimfire target set. This includes side-by-side target blocks for fun, one-on-one competition. Overall there are 299 Storm Tactical Targets in four downloadable sets.

CLICK links to launch each Storm Tactical target collection. Then you can click the download icon to save to your hard drive. OR, you can scroll up and down to select the target(s) you like which you can tell your printer to print. We do recommend downloading the complete archives. File sizes are listed.

Storm Tactical MOA TARGET PACK, 62 Targets, 28 MB PDF file.

Storm Tactical MILRAD Target Pack — YARDS, 174 Targets, 98 MB PDF file.

Storm Tactical MILRAD Target Pack — METERS, 57 Targets, 31 MB PDF file.

Storm Tactical RIMFIRE Target Pack, 6 Targets, 4.6 MB PDF file.

AccurateShooter Free downloadable tactical storm print targets shooting paper PDF

AccurateShooter Free downloadable tactical storm print targets shooting paper PDF

tikka t3 tactical
Here’s a Tikka T3 in Third Eye Tactical cerakoted chassis.

AccurateShooter Free downloadable tactical storm print targets shooting paper PDF


Rimfire Twin Target, for One-on-One Shooter Challenges

AccurateShooter Free downloadable tactical storm print targets shooting paper PDF

You’ll find this fun target on the third page of the Rimfire Target Pack. Just download the PDF file and instruct your printer to deliver page three. Or print out all six (6) rimfire targets if you like.

Permalink Competition, Shooting Skills No Comments »
December 23rd, 2020

FREE Online Emergency Trauma Response Training Course

Mountain Man Medical emergency trauma online course education video series

Every firearms owner should have some basic first-aid/trauma training. Sadly, bad things CAN happen at the range, even if that’s just a blown primer, or a richochet off a metal target that sends shards back at the shooter. That’s why all shooters should always wear ear and ear protection, and be PREPARED for situations requiring emergency first aid.

Mountain Man Medical emergency trauma online course education video seriesThankfully, there is a way shooters can get emergency trauma training for FREE. The folks at Mountain Man Medical offer a FREE Emergency Trauma Course. This 100% FREE online course, entitled “Emergency Trauma Response” (ETR), consists of a 13-module training program conducted via a series of web-hosted videos. It can benefit anyone who wishes to be better prepared for traumatic medical emergencies.

Mountain Man Medical emergency trauma online course education video series

Online Course Description — Module Subjects
“Emergency Trauma Response” (ETR) is a comprehensive training program for to help person become better prepared to deal with massive trauma. Building off the popular “Stop The Bleed” program, the online ETR course goes above and beyond to ensure the student has the practical knowledge to use emergency products and gear when dealing with a wide variety trauma emergencies. Of course, in any serious emergency, professional medical assistance (EMTs and First Responders) should be summoned immediately whenever that is feasible.

The Mountain Man Medical ETR Course Features 13 Modules:

1. Trauma Medicine and Combat Mindset
2. The Gear Of A Medic
3. Vital Signs and Anatomy
4. Intro to MARCH
5. Massive Hemorrhage
6. Airway
7. Respirations

8. Circulation
9. Hypothermia and Head Trauma
10. Reassessment
11. Other Injury Types
12. Practical Tourniquet Exercises/Solutions
13. Your Role As A Medic

As a side note, this Editor’s brother was a U.S. Army combat medic in Viet Nam. He received months of special training before being deployed. He told me this online ETR course provides valuable information, but one should always summon qualified medical professionals when presented with serious trauma. But when that is not possible, immediate on-the-spot correct assistance can save lives or prevent further injury.

Credit the Guns America Digest for finding this valuable online training resource.
Mountain Man Medical emergency trauma online course education video series

Permalink - Articles, - Videos, Shooting Skills, Tech Tip No Comments »
December 22nd, 2020

Tactical Tip: Head and Scope Position for Prone Shooting

Scope head position prone shooting Ryan Cleckner long range shooting handbook

In this video, former Army Ranger sniper team leader Ryan Cleckner explains how proper head and scope position is a critical component to accurate shooting. Ryan finds that some shooters place the scope too far forward or too far rearward. If the scope is too far back you may have issues with eye relief and stock reach to shoulder. If it is too far forward, you may have cheek-weld problems or get neck strain. Cleckner cautions: “When you are in a good prone position, you don’t want any strain in your neck muscles or back.”

In the video, Cleckner offers a simple method to check your scope position:

“To see if your scope is set up properly … close your eyes, lay your head on your gun, get completely comfortable, and only when you are set-up, then open your eyes. If you can’t see clearly through your scope, CHANGE something [such as comb height or scope position]”.

“When you open your eyes, if you see some scope shadow [i.e. the black ring around the edge of the scope picture], figure out which way you need to move your head to get rid of that shadow, and then make adjustments to either your position, the rifle, or the scope.”

Scope head position prone shooting Ryan Cleckner long range shooting handbook

“Very often you’ll open your eyes and realize you need to move further back or further forward. Instead of moving your position [or head], move the scope and get it set up properly.”

Tip on Viewing Your Reticle:
Cleckner: “Sometimes it can be difficult to focus between the target and the reticle, even with the parallax adjusted properly. I recommend you focus only on the reticle. Just like the front sight on a rifle or a handgun, that reticle is what you can control, and it’s what matters. Focus on a crisp, clear reticle, in a stable platform, and all that’s left is trigger control.”

Long Range Shooting Handbook — A Good Resource
Cleckner’s Long Range Shooting Handbook covers a wide range of topics important for precision marksmanship — both shooting skills and technical matters. You can view Sample Chapters from Ryan’s Book on Amazon.com. Cleckner’s book is designed as an intro to key concepts such as MOA vs. Mils, External Ballistics, and Environmental Effects. Included are personal tips and advice based on Cleckner’s years of experience as a sniper instructor and special operations sniper.

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.

Ryan Cleckner was a special operations sniper (1/75 RGR) and he served as a U.S. Army sniper instructor. Currently he works as a firearms industry executive and practicing firearms attorney.

Permalink - Videos, Optics, Shooting Skills 2 Comments »
December 18th, 2020

Big Snowstorm? No Problem — Let’s Go Shooting Anyway


This mid-December week, there have been big snowfalls in the Northeast — up to three feet in one day! All that snow has caused problems for travelers. But if you want to go shooting this weekend, don’t let a little snowfall stand in your way. Heck, just grab your snow shovel and head to the range. Here’s how Forum Member Nick (aka “ChevyTruck 83″) coped with winter’s fury back in 2012. Never underestimate the resourcefulness of a dedicated AccurateShooter Forum member….

snow 2020 winter december shooting

snow shooting range snowmanWe admire the fortitude of Forum Member Nick who, a few seasons back, braved wintry weather to enjoy a day at the range in his native Pennsylvania. A little snow on the ground couldn’t stop this intrepid shooter, who brought snow shovel and arctic gear to his range session. Folks, here’s a true “hardcore” fan of shooting! Despite the “relentless snow”, Nick reports that “at least it wasn’t windy”. Nick shot a variety of long guns, including his .22 LR rimfires, a .223 Rem, and a .308. Not daunted by the cold, Rick said it was fun to “play like a kid once in a while.” That’s the spirit!

Nick reports: “There was no wind to speak of — just relentless snow. I’ll tell you what — it’s awesome to get out and play like a kid once in a while.”

Nick’s foray into the winter wonderland really puts things in perspective for “fair-weather” shooters. After viewing Nick’s Forum thread about his snowy range session, fellow Forum member DennisH observed: “I will never complain about our super hot sugar cane fields in south Louisiana ever again! We can hold matches 12 months a year. I have NEVER had, owned, or used a snow shovel.”

Permalink News, Shooting Skills No Comments »
December 18th, 2020

INSANE Handgun Speed — 18 Shots on Target in 4.79 Seconds

Max Michel World Speed shooting championships Florida

Be prepared to have your mind blown by Max Michel. This guy is FAST. In this video he puts 18 shots on three targets with two (2) reloads, in a total of 4.79 seconds. That’s right, drawing from holster, he sends 18 rounds in under five seconds, with two mag changes in the process. That works out to a rate of fire of 225 rounds per minute. Consider this — Max shoots faster than a 19th-century Gatling Gun (which had a rate of fire of roughly 200 rounds per minute). And Max is accurate as well as speedy — 16 of Max’s 18 shots were in the targets’ A-Zones, with the other two just barely outside.


Click Speaker Icon to hear sound (audio) — it’s even more impressive with sound!

At age 30, Max Michel is a legend within the world of competitive shooting. A four-time World Speed Shooting Champion, six-time USPSA National Champion, and three-time US National Steel Champion, Max is a dominant force in pistol shooting sports. Born and raised in New Orleans, Louisiana, Max began shooting when he was just five years old. In 1999 Max joined the USAMU’s Action Pistol Team and served in the U.S. Army for 10 years as an Army shooter and trainer. Today, Max is recognized worldwide as a top-tier athlete and instructor.

Follow Max Michel, Jr., on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/maxmichel.us.

To see Max Michel and other top shooters, watch HotShots on the Sportsman Channel.

Permalink - Videos, Handguns, Shooting Skills 1 Comment »
December 16th, 2020

Self-Defense Skills — Important Advice for Concealed Pistol Carry

Handgun pistol concealed carry Julie Golob
Main photo from NRAFamily.org.

With the civil unrest happening around the country in Democrat-run cities, more citizens are getting CCW permits and carrying self-defense pistols. With the right to carry come responsibilities of course. You should train with your pistol, and always practice gun safety. In this article, S&W pro shooter Julie Golob offers advice for concealed pistol carry.

Our friend Julie hosts a series of handgun instructional videos for Shooting USA. While Julie uses pistols mostly for competition, this U.S. Army veteran also values handguns for self-defense. In this video series, Julie first talks about important gun safety rules, then she offers training advice for persons who carry concealed handguns. The third video covers options for carry a weapon “off-body”, i.e. not in a normal holster on concealment rig on one’s person.

1. GUN SAFETY — Whether you own 1 gun or 100, gun safety must always be your main priority. Here Smith & Wesson Team Captain Julie Golob covers the basics of gun safety.

2. PRACTICE for CONCEALED CARRY — Engaging a threat from concealment could be the most important skill of your life and it takes practice to be proficient. In this video, S&W’s Julie Golob demonstrates some practice drills for concealed carry.

3. OFF-BODY CONCEALED CARRY OPTIONS — There are instances where carrying a concealed weapon on your body in a holster (or deep cover pouch) is not always practical. Here Julie explains various techniques to carrying a concealed handgun “Off Body”.

Julie Golob

Julie — pistol champion, Army veteran, wife and mother, is also an accomplished author, who has written about the shooting sports in many shooting publications, newswires, and internet blogs. Her book, Shoot: Your Guide to Shooting and Competition, serves as both an introduction to firearms for novices and a primer to help experienced shooters improve their skills.

Permalink Handguns, Shooting Skills, Tactical No Comments »
December 15th, 2020

Holiday Season Deer Hunting with Specialty Pistols

specialty pistol hunting hunt deer wyoming Ernie Bishop handguns

Our friend Ernie Bishop (SEB Rests USA) has been busy in the Wyoming backcountry. Bishop is a big fan of specialty pistols, and one of his favorite XP-100 bolt-action pistols showed its capabilities recently, harvesting a whitetail doe that will provide meat for the Bishop family and friends.

Ernie reports: “Dan Ekstrom and I did some whitetail hunting earlier this week, and tonight our families enjoyed some smoked backstrap and grilled sausage, a bunch of other fixings. We were in the foothills of the Big Horn mountains, outside of Story, Wyoming. Yes, we have whitetail here.”

specialty pistol hunting hunt deer wyoming Ernie Bishop handguns

Ernie’s Remington XP-100 bolt-action pistol features a 14.5″ HS Precision barrel chambered in .308 Winchester, fitted with a Mac’s Gunworks muzzle brake. The scope is a Burris 3-15x50mm XTR2. The field support consists of a BOG Tripod, with the original BOG PSR top and Holland’s small field bag. Ernie reports that, unfortunately, the PSR Top has been discontinued.

The Story of the Successful Whitetail Hunt — Report from the Field
Report by Ernie Bishop
My center-grip .308 Winchester XP-100 drew first blood Friday afternoon (12/11/2020). It was a hurried, double-kneeling short shot at around 50-60 yards, using my BOG tripod with PSR top. I was doing the sneaky sneak on my way to place where I was going to sit for the rest of the day (no artificial blind). The doe was either just coming out of cover or was just inside cover. We seemed to discover each other at about the same time. I was in the open though.

Even though I had the XP-100 in one hand and my BOG tripod in the other, I could not get set up quickly enough to make a shot. She turned around and walked back into cover, and then threw up her flag and waved it a few times going away for me and to the left. Now, I need to get about another hundred yards so I can try to get set up on a two-track that’s going to my right and wait there, hoping that she will cross and give me a shot opportunity. As I was walking faster to get to that spot to set up, I look to my right and there she was (or a different one, I’m not quite sure) just inside cover — basically broadside.

specialty pistol hunting hunt deer wyoming Ernie Bishop handguns

Given the spookiness of these deer here this year, I didn’t think I was going to get a shot opportunity. But you don’t know unless you try, so I kneeled, spread the tripod legs and centered up as quick as I could and took the shot. I didn’t range distance before or check afterwards. The whitetail doe dropped on the spot. The 168 grain Hornady A-MAX TAP Precision .308 Win ammo performed admirably.

specialty pistol hunting hunt deer wyoming Ernie Bishop handguns

Ernie’s Tips for Wyoming Whitetail Hunters
There are two different ways that I hunt this area of Wymoming. First is doing the slow sneaky sneak, which has given some good results, but it also ends up with the “just wasn’t able get it done” before they move into cover (which happened more than one time on Thursday and Friday morning). The second way, is to put yourself in a place to where you have a reasonable view, of where you can tell they have crossed, in semi-open areas. I usually am sitting with my back against a tree.

specialty pistol hunting hunt deer wyoming Ernie Bishop handgunsAbout Ernie Bishop — Specialty Pistol Guru
Ernie tells us: “For those who know of me in the shooting world, you would probably know me in one of two ways — Dealer for SEB Rests or someone who does most of his competing, varminting, and or hunting with specialty pistols. These are typically bolt-action, single-shot rigs that can be used with a bipod. They are similar to a pistol-grip rifle, but without a conventional buttstock. My interest in all things specialty pistols (Remington XP-100, TC Contender, MOA Maximum, Pachmayr Dominator, H-S Precision HSP, etc.) goes back to the early 1980s. Sadly, some of these are no longer made.

Permalink - Articles, Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Hunting/Varminting, Shooting Skills 2 Comments »