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July 17th, 2012

Monitor Balance Beam with Magnified Image on SmartPhone

If you use a balance-beam scale to weigh powder and reloading components, here’s a clever way to magnify the view of the beam tip. Of course you can use an old-fashioned magnifying glass, clamped in place, to upsize the view. But now there’s a parallax-free, electronic solution that works for anyone with an iPhone or Android OS smartphone.

Forum member Allan E. (aka “1066”) discovered that he could use the camera on his smartphone to display and magnify the image of a balance-beam tip. This works via a Magnifying Glass App you can download for free. Just turn on the smartphone, activate the Magnifying Glass App and zoom-in to suit your preference. Alan explains: “This saves those tired eyes. It’s much more accurate because there’s no parallax — the lens is directly in line with the pointer so we can see [the pointer] off the screen from any angle. It’s a much clearer view, and it costs nothing.”

You’ll need to fabricate some kind of stand or clamp for the phone. Allan created a smartphone mount with a bit of wire, rubber bands, and a bullet box. You can see the system working in the video below. (The video starts by showing a webcam + laptop balance-beam monitor system. The Smartphone system demo begins at the 1:30″ time-mark.)

Magnifying Glass Apps AndroidMagnifying Glass Apps for iPhones and Android Phones
There are numerous ‘magnifying glass’ programs for Apple and Android smartphones that use the built-in camera. Most include a zoom function and auto-focus. You might try a couple different Apps and see which works best for you. Some perform better in low light, while others resolve better. All of the following have 4-star or better user ratings:

Magnifying Glass App, (iBeam), Apple iPhone/iPod, $0.99.

Magnifying Glass App, (David Perry), Android OS, Free.

Magnifying Glass App, (Perun Labs), Android OS, Free.

Magnify App, (Appd Lab), Android OS, Free.

Ultra-Magnifier +, (zapDroid), Android OS, include Flashlight Function, Free.

Story find by Boyd Allen. We welcome readers submissions.
Permalink - Videos, New Product, Optics 1 Comment »
April 21st, 2012

Get ABCs of Reloading eBook for just $1.99 at

ABCs of Reloading Kindle ebookA handy eBook version of the popular resource ABCs of Reloading is now on sale for $1.99. That’s right — for the price of a cup of coffee at Starbucks, you can get a very useful 288-page introductory reloading treatise, complete with hundreds of photos. The print version of this book costs $17.81 at Amazon.

This eBook will not tell you about some advanced reloading methods used by benchrest shooters. However, you’ll find good basic information on important topics such as: powder storage, proper handling of primers, how to set full-length dies, press mounting and set-up, trimming brass, and measuring for run-out. For those who are new at reloading this is a very useful guide that contains the fundamentals you need to know to be a safe and productive reloader. If you have friends who are getting started in reloading, you can send this eBook to them. It’s a thoughtful, inexpensive gift.

Please note: This $1.99 edition is a digital book, NOT a paperback. It does have hundreds of photos and many charts. We found the text very easy to read on a Kindle, and most of the photos were plenty big. You can download a sample for free if you’re curious to see how the book displays before you buy.

What’s an eBook?
An eBook is a digital file with text, photos and graphics. You download the file from to your Kindle (hand-held) eReader, home computer, lap-top computer, iPad or smartphone. You may have to install a free eReader App on your computer or phone before you can access the file. Once the file is loaded you can search text, make bookmarks, and highlight text.

Do I Need a Kindle?
No. Even if you do not own an Amazon Kindle, you can read the eBook on any kind of computer, or you can read the eBook on a smartphone or iPad. But you may have to install a program (App) before the file can be opened. The reading Apps are FREE.

super dealAmazon Prime Members Can Get eBook for FREE
If you have an Amazon Prime membership, you can download this eBook for FREE — provided you haven’t used up your “one book a month” allotment. Certain Amazon titles (like this) are in the Prime Member Lending Library. Each month, you’re allowed to download one Lending Library eBook for free. If you haven’t “borrowed” an eBook this month, and you’re an Amazon Prime member, you can get the digital edition of the ABCs of Reloading for FREE.

Permalink Hot Deals, Reloading No Comments »
March 29th, 2012

New $0.99 Gun Inventory App for iPhones, iPods, iPads

gun inventory appIf you have a firearms collection, you need an inventory of the guns, with serial numbers, photos, and detailed descriptions. This is important for insurance and law enforcement purposes. If your firearms are ever stolen or destroyed in a fire or other natural disaster you need a complete inventory if you expect to get a proper insurance payout. There is nothing wrong with writing down descriptions of your guns in a “hard-copy” notebook or ledger. However, many gun owners don’t bother to take photos of their firearms, making it difficult to claim full value during loss. Additionally, ledgers are easy to misplace, and, in the event of a fire, your “hard copy” gun inventory may go up in smoke. has created Gun Inventory, a handy $0.99 smart-phone App that makes it easy to create a detailed inventory of all your firearms, complete with photos. Gun Inventory works with iPhones, iPods, iPads and all iOS devices (no Android version yet). Using this App, in a few minutes you can inventory all your guns, complete with photos taken with your iPhone’s camera. The app allows you to fill in details such as Make, Model, Serial Number, Finish, Barrel Length, and any other info that can help identify your firearms. After the info is saved, your guns are organized into a easily-navigated list, that you’ll have with you when you leave home. Need an inventory print-out? Just email the list from your iPhone or iPad to any web-mail address.

gun inventory app

How Secure Is Your List on a Phone?
In reviewing this product, we initially thought: “It’s a really BAD IDEA to carry around a list of your guns on a cell phone”. If a bad guy accesses your iPhone gun list, he learns you are a prime target for theft, and, unfortunately, your home address can be easily traced from your cell number. But the creators of the Gun Inventory App have given some thought to security. First, the App has an optional password protected login screen. By all means, if you use this App, use the password protection! (We wish the log-in screen did not say “Gun Inventory” — that’s enough to tell thieves that you’re a gun owner. The App developers should create a “stealth” entry screen with a title such as “Baby Pictures”.) Second, if you lose your phone, you can delete your gun list using the remote wiping features that come on iOS devices. The Gun Inventory App can be purchased for just $0.99 through the iTunes App Store.

gun inventory app

Permalink New Product 2 Comments »
January 10th, 2012

The NRA Now Has Its Very Own iPhone APP

Technology keeps moving forward, and the NRA is moving with it. You may be surprised, but now the NRA has its own App that runs on iPhones and iPad tablets. This App provides instant access to the latest gun-related content from the NRA News, the NRA-ILA website, the NRABlog, and NRA social media sites (such as the NRA’s Facebook page). You can also download and watch NRA videos, search for NRA activities, check event schedules, and much more.

NRA App is Free for a Limited Time
If this sounds like something you’d like to add to your digital arsenal, then head on over to the iTunes store and add the NRA app to your collection. But don’t hesitate — this NRA App is FREE for a limited time only. As with other opportunities in life, you snooze, you loose.

Note the link above only goes directly to the NRA App order page if you already have iTunes installed on your computer. Otherwise the link sends you to the iTunes home page.
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January 7th, 2012

New iPhone Weather App for Hunters from Realtree

Realtree offers an iPhone application (“App”) designed for hunters that displays up-to-date radar images, current conditions, wind speed and direction on an interactive Google map. The Realtree Weather App for iPhone is now available on the iTunes store for $3.99.

Hunter weather radar AppRealtree Weather automatically detects users’ current locations with a blue pin. Browsers can also simply type in the name of a location of interest and the application drops a pin on the map, marking that location and providing current weather conditions, temperatures, forecasts and highs and lows.

The iMap-enabled Realtree Weather application, developed by weather leader Weather Decision Technologies, Inc., (WDT) detects the user’s location and provides local radar data, as well as current conditions, a 7-day forecast, humidity, wind direction and dew-point data. The Realtree application delivers severe weather information, including the latest US radar, IR satellite and lightning strikes. The Realtree App also provides direct access to national conservation and hunting news.

Radar Weather Data Updated every Five Minutes
Using the “pinch zoom” method to zoom in and out of the map, users can access detailed radar information, all the way down to street level. The radar can animate a continuous loop, allowing hunters to better predict storm paths. The radar data is updated every five minutes.

“Weather is a high priority for any hunter or outdoor sportsman,” said Mike Gauthier, vice president of sales for WDT. “With Realtree’s mobile application, we are bringing the most powerful, innovative and accurate weather, radar and satellite data available in the United States, transforming any iPhone into a reliable decision-making tool for the nation’s 23 million hunters.”

Permalink Hunting/Varminting, New Product No Comments »
November 14th, 2011

Popular ‘Shooter’ Ballistics App Now Available for Apple iPhones

iOS Apple Shooter Ballistics AppOne of the best ballistics programs for smartphones is the ‘Shooter’ Ballistics App originally created for the Android OS, which runs LG, HTC, Motorola and Samsung smartphones. Now the developer of the Android Shooter App has released a full-featured version that runs on Apple iPhones.

The new Shooter App for the Apple iOS includes ALL of the capabilities of the original Android program. So now, for just $9.99, iPhone users can enjoy the same advanced Ballistics Solutions as Andoid users. Bryan Litz tells us: “The iOS (Apple) version of Shooter has all the same functionality as the Android version including the same point mass ballistic solver and library of measured G7 BCs which makes it a highly accurate predictive tool”.

iOS Apple Shooter Ballistics App

Complete details of Shooter App for iPhones, including screenshots of the App, can be found in the Apple iTunes store, where you can purchase the App for $9.99. Here are some of the key features of Shooter Ballistics App for iPhones:

  • G1 and G7 BC capability, with the option to input ‘velocity banded’ BCs.
  • Angle Compensation (Up or Down Angle can be measured using the built-in inclinometer).
  • Bullet Library which includes Litz-measured “true” BCs.
  • Rifle and ammo profiles (for storing load info for all your guns).
  • Atmosphere effects (pressure, temp, and humidity).
  • Spin drift (requires bullet length and twist rate inputs).
Permalink New Product 1 Comment »
November 14th, 2011

FREE Quickoffice App for Android Devices — Nov. 14th ONLY

For the remainder of today, November 14th, the Android OS Quickoffice Pro App is FREE for the taking. That’s right, this App, normally priced at $14.99, costs zero, zip, nada. This productivity App lets you create, edit, and view Word, Excel, and PowerPoint files. The Quickoffice Pro App also includes a PDF Viewer for Adobe Acrobat files. Remember this FREE OFFER is good for today only on!

Quickoffice Pro Android App

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June 3rd, 2011

Target Shooting Magazine Offers iPad Edition

Our friend Vince Bottomley of Target Shooter Magazine,, let us know about an exciting new development for the quality UK-based shooting eZine. Starting this month, June 2011, the latest monthly edition of Target Shooter will be available as a digital App for Apple iPads. Each monthly edition can be downloaded from the iTunes store for just $0.99. That’s a good value when you consider Target Shooter has at least 6-8 feature articles every month, plus gear reviews and match reports. Here are some highlight from this month’s June edition of Target Shooter:

  • New Optics for 2011 from Leupold, IOR, March, Schmidt & Bender, Sightron (informative report by Vince Bottomley).
  • Handloading for the 6mmBR (Part 2), by Laurie Holland (Great article — a “must read”.)
  • Visit to Savage Arms Factory (in Massachusetts) by Yvonne Wilcock.
  • New Valkyrie Tactical .308 (in Folding Stock), by Chris Parkin.
  • Reading Mirage for Rimfire and Air Rifle Benchrest, by Carl Boswell.
  • Review of Bryan Litz’s Applied Ballistics (2d. Ed) book.
  • Target Shooter Magazine

If you prefer to read Target Shooter on the web, or you don’t have an iPad content reader, don’t worry, Target Shooter will still be available for free through Target Shooter’s website. Just log on to But if you want to see the latest and greatest version of Target Shooter, consider the iTunes download. Vince tells us: “the magazine is so much nicer to read with an iPad — it’s almost better than a paper magazine.” To download Target Shooter, just go to the iTunes Webstore and search iPad apps for “Target Shooter” or “targetshooteronline”.

Permalink - Articles, News No Comments »
April 3rd, 2011

New Shooting Simulation App for iPhones and iPads

Reload App iPhoneWhile there are now over 330,000 iPhone apps, studies show that iPhone owners use their devices overwhelming for just three functions: Talking, Texting (or email), and Gaming. If you’re an iPhone or iPad owner looking for a decent gun-oriented game, check out RELOAD, a new shooting simulator for the iPhone, the iPad and the iPod Touch. The RELOAD App, released on March 31, 2011, costs $2.99 at the iTunes Store. A version for Android phone will be available later this year.

Featuring a wide variety of virtual firearms, RELOAD lets you train for everything from hostage rescue and sniper situations to Olympic-style shooting events. There are 17 levels and over 100 different milestone awards, medals, or badges. According to Mastiff, the App’s creator: “Master pistols and you’re ready for long gun training. Start at the rifle range, move to skeet shooting, and finally train to be a sniper. Whatever the weapon, the basics are the same: Identify targets, sight them in, take them down.”

Reload App iPhone

While the game is mostly about shooting Bad Guys with a variety of defensive weapons ranging from Desert Eagle Pistols to military rifles, there are some target shooting scenarios where accuracy and precision are paramount. If you have an iPhone (and time to burn), you’ll probably find RELOAD worth its $2.99 price. It won’t make you a better shooter in the real world, but it can be entertaining.

Reload App iPhone

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March 3rd, 2011

Free Winchester Ballistics App for iPhone

Yet another ballistics App is now available for the iPhone and iPod. iPhone users can download the new Winchester Ballistics App for free. Winchester has taken the features and functionality from its web-based Ballistics Calculator and developed a user-friendly interface for the iPhone. Winchester’s free online ballistics calculator is still available.

The iPhone version of Winchester’s Ballistics Calculator allows users to choose their type of ammunition and compare up to three different Winchester products with easy-to-read, high-tech ballistic charts and graphs. You can customize shooting conditions by entering wind speed and outside temperature, adjust zero marks for sighting in.

To get the free Winchester App, visit the Winchester Ballistics webpage, and click on the photo of an iPhone on the right side of the screen. You will need to have iTunes configured on your computer to download the Winchester App.

Recommended $9.99 ‘Ballistic’ App
While you’re at the iPhones store, you probably want to download the ‘Ballistic’ App by Jonathan Zdziarski. Powered by the JBM Ballistics engine, the $9.99 ‘Ballistic’ App is recommended by Bryan Litz, and it is one of the most sophisticated solvers available. A new $19.99 iPad version of ‘Ballistic’ has just been introduced.

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February 18th, 2011

Lapua Offers FREE Ballistics App for Java-Compatible Phones

Free Lapua Ballistics AppLapua now offers a FREE ballistics program for modern smart phones that run Java Apps. (Unfortunately, that excludes Apple iPhones and Android OS phones, but Lapua says that the majority of smartphones run Java). The program calculates drift and drop, and it corrects for altitude, temp, air pressure, and shot angle. The Lapua Ballistics App also includes a database of Lapua bullet profiles with ultra-reliable radar-derived Ballistic Coefficients. Sound good? Now go get your smart phone. The program must be downloaded with a mobile phone. Open a web browser in your smart-phone and navigate to and choose the correct version for your phone.

Lapua’s exterior ballistic software for mobile phones is capable of predicting trajectories in real time with extreme accuracy. Using Lapua Ballistics, there is no need for checking tables and calculating cosines for inclination compensation (you still have to input the angle). The program also compensates for the effect of cartridge temperature on muzzle velocity and the effect of atmospheric conditions on the projectile’s trajectory.

Lapua Ballistics is based on precise Doppler Radar measurements of actual bullet drag — professional data available only for Lapua bullets. Lapua Ballistics can be installed on all smartphones supporting basic Java (Java MIDP 2.0). NOTE: Apple iPhone and Android platforms do not support Java ME.

Permalink Hot Deals, New Product 3 Comments »
January 13th, 2011

Point of Impact Target Shooting Game from Guns & Ammo

Point of Impact App GameNeed a diversion? Looking for an interesting shooting game you can play on an iPhone or iPad as well as your home computer? The Guns & Ammo Point of Impact Shooting Game lets you select a firearm type, then shoot it for accuracy in “virtual ranges” modeled after the Scottsdale (AZ) Gun Club. No this is NOT another Zombie Game, or First-Person-Shooter kill-fest. It is NOT based on the Point of Impact book by author Stephen Hunter. Point of Impact is a skill-oriented, arcade-style gun simulator presented by the National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF). It lets you test your skills in target shooting scenarios, with a wide selection of virtual firearms and targets.

*WARNING: We are not aware of any issues with this software and it passed multiple virus scans for us. However, as with any software, installation of this program can take resources and slow your machine down. Also, a software conflict could cause other programs to crash or run more slowly. For these reasons, we recommend that you NOT install this software on a work computer. If you choose to install the computer version on your home computer, and you don’t like it, or you get bored with it, you should uninstall the program from your home PC or laptop.

Credit Research Assistant Edlongrange for sourcing this game report.

Permalink Shooting Skills 1 Comment »