March 13th, 2020

Cartridge Base to Ogive (CBTO) Length — Factors to Consider

chamber length loading berger bullets
Here are two different bullet types, seated to the same CBTO length, but different COAL. Note the shiny scratches on the bullets made by the comparator tool which indicates a point on the bullet ogive near where the ogive will engage the rifling.

Berger Bullets COAL length cartridgeEffects Of Cartridge Over All Length (COAL) And Cartridge Base To Ogive (CBTO) – Part 2
by Bryan Litz for Berger Bullets.
Part One of this series focused on the importance of COAL in terms of SAAMI standards, magazine lengths, seating depths, and pressure levels. Another measure of length for loaded ammunition is highly important to precision, namely Cartridge Base to Bullet Ogive Length (CBTO).

Figure 2. Chamber throat geometry showing the bullet jump to the rifling or lands.
chamber length loading berger bullets

Look at Figure 2. Suppose the bullet was seated out of the case to the point where the base of the bullet’s nose (ogive) just contacted the beginning of the riflings (the lands) when the bolt was closed. This bullet seating configuration is referred to as touching the lands, or touching the riflings and is a very important measurement to understand for precision hand-loading. Due to the complex dynamics of internal ballistics which happen in the blink of an eye, the distance a bullet moves out of the case before it engages the riflings is highly critical to precision potential. Therefore, in order to systematically optimize the precision of his handloads, it’s critically important that the precision hand-loader understands how to alter bullet seating depth in relation to the barrel rifling. Part of the required knowledge is understanding how to accurately and repeatably measure the Cartridge Base To Ogive (CBTO) dimension. This is explained in the FULL ARTICLE.

Bryan Litz offers an extended discussion on how to measure CBTO using different tools and methods, including the Hornady OAL gauge. You can read this discussion in the full article found on the Berger Bullets website. CLICK HERE to Read Full Article.

Why Not Use CBTO as a SAAMI Standard?
If CBTO is so important to rifle accuracy, you might ask, “Why is it not listed as the SAAMI spec standard in addition to COAL?” There is one primary reason why it is not listed in the standard. This is the lack of uniformity in bullet nose shapes and measuring devices used to determine CBTO.

Benefits of Having a Uniform CBTO
There is another aspect to knowing your CBTO when checking your COAL as it pertains to performance. With good bullets, tooling, and carefully-prepared cases you can easily achieve a CBTO that varies less than +/- .001″ but your COAL can vary as much as .025″ extreme spread (or more with other brands). This is not necessarily bad and it is much better than the other way around. If you have a CBTO dimension that varies but your COAL dimension is tight (within +/- .002″) then it is most likely that your bullet is bottoming out inside the seater cone on the bullet tip. This is very bad and is to be avoided. It is normal for bullets to have precisely the same nose shape and it is also normal for these same bullets to have nose lengths that can vary as much as .025″.

Summary of Cartridge Base To Ogive (CBTO) Discussion
Here are four important considerations regarding bullet seating depth as it relates to CBTO:

1. CBTO is a critical measurement to understand for handloaders because it’s directly related to precision potential, and you control it by simply setting bullet seating depth.

2. Tools and methods for measuring CBTO vary. Most of the measurement techniques have pitfalls (which may give rise to inconsistent results) that you should understand before starting out.

3. A CBTO that produces the best precision in your rifle may not produce the best precision in someone else’s rifle. Even if you have the same rifle, same bullets, same model of comparator gauges, etc. It’s possible that the gauges are not actually the same, and measurements from one don’t translate to the same dimension for another.

4. Once you find the CBTO that produces the best precision in your rifle, it’s important to allow minimal variation in that dimension when producing quality handloads. This is achieved by using quality bullets, tooling, and properly preparing case mouths and necks for consistent seating.

CLICK HERE to Read Full Article with More Info
Article sourced by EdLongrange. We welcome tips from readers.
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March 2nd, 2020

Bargain Finder 232: AccurateShooter’s Deals of the Week

Accurateshooter Bargain Finder Deals of Week

At the request of our readers, we provide select “Deals of the Week”. Every Sunday afternoon or Monday morning we offer our Best Bargain selections. Here are some of the best deals on firearms, hardware, reloading components, optics, and shooting accessories. Be aware that sale prices are subject to change, and once clearance inventory is sold, it’s gone for good. You snooze you lose.

1. Cabela’s — Big Second Amendment Sale

cabelas second amendment sale ammo handguns

Now through March 11, 2020, Cabela’s is running a great Second Amendment Sale, with big discounts on firearms, ammo, optics, hunting gear, and other accessories. Many items are being offered at discounts up to 33%. For example, Frankford Arsenal products are now 20% OFF. Hundreds of items are on sale — a small sample is shown above. CLICK for SALE.

2. Midsouth Shooters — Berger Bullet Sale

berger bullet sale

In a wide variety of competitive shooting disciplines, Berger bullets are a top choice. Bergers are well-made and consistent. They win matches and have set many records. Plus Berger has just released a line of Long Range Hybrid Target (LRHT) bullets. Right now, Midsouth has a big Berger bullet sale including the new Long Range Hybrid Target Bullets at the lowest prices we’ve seen this year.

3. A&A Optics — Refurb Vortex Golden Eagle 10-60x52mm, $900

golden eagle sale

The 10-60X Vortex Golden Eagle is, justifiably, very popular among top benchrest and F-Class shooters. Ian Klemm won back-to-back USA F-TR Championships with this scope. Right now you can snag either the Refurbished Golden Eagle 10-60x52m w/ SCR-1 reticle for a crazy low price of $900 or the Refurbished Golden Eagle 10-60x52m w/ ECR-1 reticle for $1100. NOTE: These Refurb Golden Eagles still come with the Vortex Lifetime guarantee so you can buy with confidence.

4. Bruno Shooters Supply — Alliant Powder Sale

alliant powder sale

Alliant powders are popular for good reason. Many modern Alliant powders work great over a large temperature range and boast very consistent performance from lot to lot. Reloder 16 is a great option for H4350 users. Right now Bruno’s is running site-wide Alliant sale with every Alliant powder in stock on sale at some of the lowest prices we’ve seen in a while.

5. Sportsman’s Warehouse — Sig Kilo Rangefinder Sale

sig lasder rangefinder

Successful hunters and competitive shooters know the key to accurate shots is accurate ranging of a target. You can pick up one of the Sig Kilo Laser Rangefinders models 1000, 1200, 1400 or 1800 at up to 25% off and always know your distance so you can take a safe and accurate shot at any target.

6. Amazon — Mac Folding Cart, starting at $56.99

mac folding cart

Heading to the range or a match always requires transporting gear from your vehicle to the firing line. Most shooters use a cart, but many have small or narrow wheels and are tough to drag across sand, grass or rocks when fully loaded. We like Mac Sports Folding Carts which fold flat yet offer plenty of cargo space for your gear. Amazon offers 35″x20″ Mac Carts starting at $56.99 for Camo and $57.69 for Red, with many other colors. We do recommend spending $23 more for the $79.99 heavy-duty Mac Cart available at Costco. This larger (37″x22″) gray Costco cart boasts much WIDER WHEELS so it rolls way better in sand or gravel. The Costco Mac cart also has a 300-lb carrying capacity.

7. Amazon — Vortex 20-60x60mm Angled Spotting Scope, $393

vortex spotting scope

Whether hunting or target shooting, spotting scopes help you get on target faster and easier than using bare eyes or scope. If you’re in need of good all-purpose spotter check out the Vortex Diamondback 20-60x60mm angled spotting scope. It offers great clarity, a compact form design and an unconditional lifetime guarantee.

8. Keen — Men’s Gypsum II Waterproof Shoe, $69.99

keen shoe sale

Whether shooting at a match or out in the forest having good footwear is critical to your comfort and safety. If you attend any regional or national match and look at what people are wearing, you’ll see quite a few people wearing Keen shoes and for good reason. They’re rugged, durable and probably the most comfortable outdoor shoe this editor has worn for days on end. If you’ve been looking for an extra pair or maybe want to try them for yourself, head over to the Keen website where the Gypsum II waterproof hiking shoe is 47% off. They also have some great sales on other men’s and women’s shoes right now.

9. Grizzly — High-Quality Range Bag Clearance, $13 to $24

grizzly range bags

Every shooter needs a good range bag. Grizzly is near the end of its clearance on range gear and the clearance range bags are now just $13 to $24. Your Editor uses this range bag to carry spotting scopes and camera gear (see photo below).

Grizzly range bag

These quality bags have high-density foam sidewalls and internal padded “shelves” that make these much better than typical floppy range bags. These are more like a premium camera case that holds its shape. There are nice front and side pockets with quality zippers. FYI the $12.97 bag really is a hot pink, though it may look red on your monitor. The photo above is a 20″ bag in original red (sold out).

10. Amazon — Anti-Fog Safety Glasses, $16.94

safety glasses

All recreational and competitive shooters should have quality Z87-rated protective eyewear. Folks, you only have one set of eyes. Without eye protection, a single blown primer could seriously damage your eyesight. Right now you can grab this 3 pack of anti-fog safety glasses and always have an extra pair when you need them.

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February 17th, 2020

Bargain Finder 230: AccurateShooter’s Deals of the Week

Accurateshooter Bargain Finder Deals of Week

At the request of our readers, we provide select “Deals of the Week”. Every Sunday afternoon or Monday morning we offer our Best Bargain selections. Here are some of the best deals on firearms, hardware, reloading components, optics, and shooting accessories. Be aware that sale prices are subject to change, and once clearance inventory is sold, it’s gone for good. You snooze you lose.

1. Sportsman’s Warehouse — Primer SALE, 30-42% Off

primer sale

Finding primers is still tough and getting them on sale (at huge discounts) is even harder. But right now, for a limited time, you can save up to 42% on Major Brand primers at Sportsman’s Warehouse. All types of CCI, Federal, Remington, and Winchester primers are on sale, including hard-to-find Federal 205Ms and CCI 450s. And yes, pistol and shotshell primers are on sale too. These are GREAT prices — you should stock up now! NOTE: Some primers are limited to 10 boxes (1000 primers) per order.

2. Stocky’s — Special Edition Rem 700 Stocks, $228.88

remington stocks

The Remington 700 (and clones) collectively remain the number one receiver type on the market. If you’re looking to upgrade your Rem 700, Rem 7, or Rem clone, consider one of these Special Edition Remington 700™ Classic Deluxe Stocks from Stocky’s Stocks. They’re available in 14 colors/laminates, all with correct inletting for your Rem or Rem clone action. Stocky’s wood stocks are rugged and handsome.

3. Midsouth — .308 Win Berger Bullets+Brass Load Pack, $64.99

berger loader pack sale

For Palma and F-TR disciplines, the .308 Winchester remains the competitor’s cartridge of choice. If you need bullets and brass, check out these Berger Match Grade Loader Packs featuring Berger 155 grain .308 diameter VLDs and .308 Win ABM brass. (ABM stands for Applied Ballistics Munitions, which is now Berger Ammo). These 155gr Berger bullets are truly match grade and a smart choice for Palma work. At $64.99 for 100 bullets AND 100 pieces of brass, this is a great deal. You could pay a lot more than than just for premium brass. Plus this deal includes FREE Shipping.

4. MidwayUSA — 6.5 Creedmoor Remington 700 PCR, $699.99

remington pcr precison chassis rifle PRS sale

The new Remington Model 700 PCR (Precision Chassis Rifle) features a Rem 700 action in an aluminum chassis. This rifle features a free-floated 24″ 5R barrel with an aluminum handguard. The Magpul PRS Gen 3 stock adjusts for comb height and length of pull and the toe design works well in a rabbit-ear rear bag. Remington says these Model 700 PCRs are tested to yield sub-MOA accuracy out of the box. Right now this rifle, as chambered in 6.5 Creedmoor, is discounted $200.00 to $699.99. That’s a fine deal for a capable precision/tactical rifle.

5. EuroOptic — Bushnell Nitro Scope Sale, Save Up to 54%

bushnell scope sale

Bushnell makes quality scopes with great features for very affordable prices. Right now EuroOptic offers Bushnell 4-16x44mm and 5-20x44mm Nitro scopes with savings up to 54%. These are rugged Mil/Mil FFP scopes with the excellent Deploy MRAD Reticle with 0.1 Mil clicks. Consider this — the 5-20X Nitro was a solid value at $649.99, and now it is just $299.00 — that’s a $350.00 savings! These is a good hunting/varminting scope with scratch-resistent EXO-coated lenses that repel water and dust.

6. Amazon — Rexbetti Digital Micrometer, $39.99

digital micrometer

We’ve listed deals on digital calipers, but the other important measuring device every hand-loader should have is a Digital Micrometer. These are critical for determining neck wall thickness and other dimensions not suitable for calipers. This Rexbetti Digital Micrometer is a nicely-crafted unit (for the price) that measures to 0.00005″/0.001 mm.

7. Cabela’s — Pelican Vault Handgun Cases, $29.97 and $49.97

pelican handgun case

Typical handgun cases are pretty flimsy with easy-to-defeat lock tabs and cheap foam. These Pelican Vaults are much higher quality, offering serious protection for your pistols. Right now Cabela’s is offering the V100 Small Handgun Case for $29.97 or the V200 Medium Handgun Case for $49.97. Both cases feature five layers of interior foam, are airline compliant, watertight, and have pressure relief valves. The V200 also features strong stainless steel locking hasps.

8. Brownells — Wipeout Foam Cleaner, $14.99

wipeout cleaner

Walking the firing line of the Berger SW Nationals this year, one cleaning product was mentioned over and over again and for good reason. Sharp Shoot R Wipe-Out foaming bore cleaner is a no-nonsense, easy-to-use bore cleaner that does a great job. We get best results with two applications of Wipe-Out after some wet patches. If you’re tired of long brushing sessions, give Wipe-Out a try — it really reduces brushing required. This is a great deal. The same 5 oz. can is $24.95 on Amazon.

9. Amazon — JMack’s Ultra Soft Foam Earplugs 50ct, $6.49

soft foam earplugs

Week after week we talk about the importance of good hearing protection. With this deal, you can pick up a 50-pair (100 ct) supply of 32 dB NRR soft foam earplugs for only $6.49 — a 40% savings. These plugs are comfortable and have a very impressive Noise Reduction Rating (NRR). For under seven bucks, you can get some serious protection, with plenty of “pairs to spare” for your shooting buddies and friends.

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February 17th, 2020

Team Lapua-Brux-Borden — Big Winners at Berger SW Nationals

Lapua brux borden Team Berger SW southwest Nationals SWN Jay Christopherson Tod Hendricks

Dominators — that’s what these blue-shirted guys were at the 2020 Berger Southwest Nationals (SWN). For the third straight year, Team Lapua-Brux-Borden won the coveted F-Open Team Grand Aggregate award at the Berger Southwest Nationals, finishing with a score of 2584-160X (out of a possible 2600). And Team Member Jay Christopherson (AccurateShooter’s System Admin) won the F-Open Overall title, while Team Member Tod Hendricks won the 600-yard Mid-Range Event. Mighty impressive…

Lapua brux borden Team Berger SW southwest Nationals SWN Jay Christopherson Tod Hendricks

Team members are Jay Christopherson, David Christian, Tod Hendricks, Pat Scully, and Jeremy Smith (alternate), with Bob Sebold serving as Coach and Erik Cortina as Captain. Remarkably Jay (1247-83X), Pat (1247-72X), and Tod (1245-81X) placed first, second, and third respectively in the F-Open Grand Aggregate individual awards. That’s right, three team-mates secured ALL the podium places. And all three were separated by only two points!

Record-Setting Performances by Team
Notably Team Lapua-Brux-Borden established a new Ben Avery range record along the way to winning the Palma Team Match with a score of 1791-113 (out of a possible 1800). We’re told that the Team’s 793-47X LR score was also a new match record. Jay set a LR Aggregate Record with 799-50X, while Tod set a LR individual relay record of 200-18X.

Berger SW Nationals 2020
Photo by Sherri Jo Gallagher.

Team Lapua-Brux-Borden — Winning “Team First” Philosophy
Commentary by Jay Christopherson
For Team Lapua-Borden-Brux, winning gold is the entire focus. To that end, ego is the only enemy. Sure, we all have egos as individual shooters, but as a team, ego is subsumed into that one overriding goal. If you can’t do that, then you can’t shoot on Lapua-Borden-Brux. No matter how good you think your rifle is or how well you are shooting individually, the coach is the only arbiter — no exceptions. Every job on the team is focused towards that single goal of gold and no job is more or less important than another. Our plotter saves points by spotting high or low trends and calling that out, and ensuring we don’t lose points when a scorer misses a shot. Our back-coach saves points by spotting upcoming condition changes or making observations. Our target-puller strives to provide an example of the best possible target service. And our scorer focuses on providing attentive service to the team next to us. A failure in one job is a failure in all and we either win or lose together as a team. That is only possible when each individual understands that there is only one goal.

The Berger Southwest Nationals, hosted by the Desert Sharpshooters Rifle Club, took place February 5-9, 2020 at the Ben Avery Shooting Facility in Phoenix, AZ with a sold-out roster of 400 competitors. America’s biggest rifle match west of the Mississippi, the Southwest Nationals is a “must-attend” event for long-range shooters competing in F-Open, F-TR, and Sling disciplines. Competitors from at least nine different countries were in attendance. The Grand Aggregate is the total score from firing points of 600, 800, 900, and 1,000 yards.

Lapua brux borden Team Berger SW southwest Nationals SWN Jay Christopherson Tod HendricksPraise from Team Captain
“I am very proud of the team”, stated Team Captain, Erik Cortina: “From setting a new range record to placing first in the F-Open Grand Aggregate, our success is directly attributed to Lapua’s premium components.”

About Lapua — Premium Brass, Bullets, and Ammunition
Lapua produces the highest-quality small caliber cartridges and components for civilian and professional use. Lapua is a part of the Capstone Precision Group, exclusive U.S. distributor for Berger, Lapua, Vihtavuori, and SK-Rimfire products. For more information, visit Lapua.com.

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February 13th, 2020

Brain Trust — Bryan Litz, Emil Praslick, and the AMP Team

Ultimate Reloader Video interview Bryan Litz Applied Ballistics Berger Bullets Emil Praslick III AMP Annealing

Our friend Gavin Gear of UltimateReloader.com was a busy man at SHOT Show 2020 in Las Vegas. He visited many leading vendors, and he also interviewed some of the most knowledgeable experts in the world of precision shooting. Today we present three important video interviews hosted by Gavin — the SHOT Show Brain Trust series.

First up is Bryan Litz, world-renowned ballistics expert and founder of Applied Ballistics LLC. The software developed by Bryan’s company is used by top competitive shooters and military marksmen. The second member of the Brain Trust is Emil Praslick III. Former Coach of the USAMU rifle team, Emil is considered to be one of the best wind-readers on the planet. Finally, we showcase a father and son team from New Zealand, Alex and Matt Finlay, developers of the Annealing Made Perfect (AMP) electrical induction annealing system.

Bryan Litz of Applied Ballistics LLC.

This interview with Bryan Litz is a “must-watch” for any serious long-range shooter. Bryan, founder of Applied Ballistics LLC., explains many important ballistics concepts. In addition Bryan discusses bullet design qualities that can reduce drag, increase BC, and improve bullet-to-bullet consistency.

Emil Praslick (U.S. Army Ret.) of Capstone Precision Group

Emil Praslick III, former coach of USAMU and USA Long Range teams, has been hailed as a “wind guru” — a master of wind reading. Emil now works for Capstone Precision Group, Parent of Berger Bullets, Lapua, Vihtavuori, and SK. In this wide-ranging interview, Emil talks about wind-reading strategies, modern bullet designs, and ballistics challenges in Long Range shooting.

Alex and Matt Finlay of Annealing Made Perfect (AMP)

Father Alex and son Matt Finlay have brought break-through technology to the world of precision hand-loading. Their innovative AMP annealing machines are true “game-changers” that extend useful case life and improve loading consistency. The computer-controlled AMP MK 2 annealing system is the most advanced and precise annealer available for the general consumer.

Comment from Interviewer Gavin Gear
It’s an absolute privilege to have access to the “best in the business”. I have so much respect for these innovators: Bryan Litz and Applied Ballistics, Emil Praslick: King of 2 Mile winning team member (2017), and the Annealing Made Perfect team (Alex and Matt). In each case, there’s very interesting innovation happening, and I’ve applied much of what I’ve learned from these people into my daily work on UltimateReloader.com.

Credit: In top photo, brain graphic Designed by Yo_Han / Freepik.

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February 5th, 2020

Berger Southwest Nationals Event Commences Today in Phoenix

Berger SW Southwest Nationals Phoenix Ben Avery 2020 F-Class F-Open F-TR

The 2020 Berger Southwest Nationals, one of the biggest (and best) rifle competitions of the year, kicks off Wednesday, February 5, 2019 at the Ben Avery Range outside Phoenix, Arizona. The big match continues through Sunday, February 9th. This match attracts the top F-Class and sling shooters in the country, along with many talented foreign competitors. See Desert Sharpshooters SWN Facebook Page.

Here’s a state-of-the-art F-Open rig with sleek, low-profile, Speedy-designed Shurley Brothers stock:
2020 Berger Southwest Nationals SWN

Talk to the competitors and many will tell your that the SWN is their favorite match of the year. For those in Northern states, the chance to enjoy some Arizona sunshine is a big draw, along with the quality of the competition, and the camaraderie.

Berger 2020 SW Nationals

The 2020 Berger SWN event commences today with a Mid-Range, 600-yard Match:

berger southwest nationals F-Class 2020 Ben Avery Mid-Range Berger SWN

Capstone Precision Group Makes This Event Possible
The Berger SW Nationals are made possible through the principal support of Berger Bullets and Lapua, both part of the Capstone Precision Group, which also distributes Vihtavuori powder and SK Ammunition in the USA. Berger and Lapua both generously donate prizes for 2020 SWN competitors.

Berger SW Southwest Nationals Phoenix Ben Avery 2020 F-Class F-Open F-TR

Bird’s Eye Ben Avery — A Look at the Range

If you’ve never visited the Ben Avery Facility north of Phoenix, Arizona, here is a video shot in 2016 that shows the 1000-yard range (including drone footage). The desert range at Ben Avery is something special — check out this “birds-eye view”. This video also includes an interview with Derek Rodgers, F-TR World Champion, King of 2 Miles, and the only man who who has earned both F-Open AND F-TR USA National titles.

Event Schedule for 2020 Berger SWN

Wednesday, 5 February 2020, 9:00 AM
Mid-Range Match – Three 20-shot matches at 600 yards. (Divisions – Palma, Any Rifle-Any Sight, F-Open, F-TR)

Thursday, 6 February 2020, 9:00 AM
4-Man Palma Team Match – 15 shots for record at 800, 900, and 1000 yards. (Divisions – Palma, F-Open, F-TR)

Friday, 7 February 2020, 8:30 AM – Start of Grand Agg
Individual Palma Match – 15 shots for record at 800, 900, and 1000 yards. (Divs – Palma, F-Open, F-TR)
Swap Meet at 1000-Yard Line after conclusion of Day’s Match

Saturday, 8 February 2020, 8:30 AM
Individual 1000 Yard Matches – Two 20-shot matches at 1000 yards. Any Rifle-Iron Sight (Any sight for F-Class shooters). (Divisions – Palma, Any Rifle-Iron Sight, F-Open, F-TR)
4 Man Team Match – 20 shots at 1000 yards. Any Rifle-Iron Sight (Any sight for F-Class shooters). (Divisions – Palma, Any Rifle-Iron Sight, F-Open, F-TR)
Banquet Dinner – Approximately 5:00 pm at Indoor Range.

Sunday, 9 February 2020, 8:30 AM
Individual 1000 Yard Matches – Two 20-shot matches at 1000 yards. Any Rifle-Any Sight (Any sight for F-Class shooters). (Divisions – Palma, Any Rifle-Any Sight, F-Open, F-TR)
Awards Ceremony at the Indoor Range.

Sling Shooters in Palma Division
For the Palma division, the cartridge of choice is the .308 Winchester (7.62.x51). This versatile cartridge is still capable of extreme accuracy. Never underestimate a skilled sling shooter with a good Palma rifle. Below is multi-time NRA National Long-Range Champion John Whidden in action. John’s rifle features a centerfire action in an aluminum Anschutz small-bore stock.

John Whidden Berger 2020 SW Nationals

CLICK HERE for Phoenix Travel and Lodging Information.


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February 4th, 2020

How to Avoid a Train Wreck at Berger SW Nationals This Week

train wreck Bryan Litz shooting tips ballistics

The 2020 Berger Southwest Nationals kicks off 2/5/2020 at the Ben Avery Range outside Phoenix, AZ. The big event starts with a 600-yard Mid-Range Match. Many of the nation’s most talented F-Class and sling shooters will be there. But no matter what your skill level, it is still possible to make major mistakes that can spoil the day and/or put you out of the running for the entire match. This article aims to help competitors avoid the big errors/oversights/failures, aka “train wrecks”, that can ruin a match.

Berger SW Nationals mid-range match
Photo by Sherri Jo Gallagher.

Berger SW Nationals mid-range match

In any shooting competition, you must try to avoid major screw-ups that can ruin your day (or your match). In this article, past F-TR National Mid-Range and Long Range Champion Bryan Litz talks about “Train Wrecks”, i.e. those big disasters (such as equipment failures) that can ruin a whole match. Bryan illustrates the types of “train wrecks” that commonly befall competitors, and he explains how to avoid these “unmitigated disasters”.

Urban Dictionary “Train Wreck” Definition: “A total @#$&! disaster … the kind that makes you want to shake your head.”

train wreck Bryan Litz shooting tips ballisticsTrain Wrecks (and How to Avoid Them)
by Bryan Litz of Applied Ballistics LLC

Success in long range competition depends on many things. Those who aspire to be competitive are usually detail-oriented, and focused on all the small things that might give them an edge. Unfortunately it’s common for shooters lose sight of the big picture — missing the forest for the trees, so to speak.

Consistency is one of the universal principles of successful shooting. The tournament champion is the shooter with the highest average performance over several days, often times not winning a single match. While you can win tournaments without an isolated stellar performance, you cannot win tournaments if you have a single train wreck performance. And this is why it’s important for the detail-oriented shooter to keep an eye out for potential “big picture” problems that can derail the train of success!

Train wrecks can be defined differently by shooters of various skill levels and categories. Anything from problems causing a miss, to problems causing a 3/4-MOA shift in wind zero can manifest as a train wreck, depending on the kind of shooting you’re doing.

Berger SW Nationals Train Wreck Bryan Litz

Below is a list of common Shooting Match Train Wrecks, and suggestions for avoiding them.

1. Cross-Firing. The fastest and most common way to destroy your score (and any hopes of winning a tournament) is to cross-fire. The cure is obviously basic awareness of your target number on each shot, but you can stack the odds in your favor if you’re smart. For sling shooters, establish your Natural Point of Aim (NPA) and monitor that it doesn’t shift during your course of fire. If you’re doing this right, you’ll always come back on your target naturally, without deliberately checking each time. You should be doing this anyway, but avoiding cross-fires is another incentive for monitoring this important fundamental. In F-Class shooting, pay attention to how the rifle recoils, and where the crosshairs settle. If the crosshairs always settle to the right, either make an adjustment to your bipod, hold, or simply make sure to move back each shot. Also consider your scope. Running super high magnification can leave the number board out of the scope’s field view. That can really increase the risk of cross-firing.

2. Equipment Failure. There are a wide variety of equipment failures you may encounter at a match, from loose sight fasteners, to broken bipods, to high-round-count barrels that that suddenly “go south” (just to mention a few possibilities). Mechanical components can and do fail. The best policy is to put some thought into what the critical failure points are, monitor wear of these parts, and have spares ready. This is where an ounce of prevention can prevent a ton of train wreck. On this note, if you like running hot loads, consider whether that extra 20 fps is worth blowing up a bullet (10 points), sticking a bolt (DNF), or worse yet, causing injury to yourself or someone nearby.

train wreck Bryan Litz shooting tips ballistics

3. Scoring/Pit Malfunction. Although not related to your shooting technique, doing things to insure you get at least fair treatment from your scorer and pit puller is a good idea. Try to meet the others on your target so they can associate a face with the shooter for whom they’re pulling. If you learn your scorer is a Democrat, it’s probably best not to tell Obama jokes before you go for record. If your pit puller is elderly, it may be unwise to shoot very rapidly and risk a shot being missed (by the pit worker), or having to call for a mark. Slowing down a second or two between shots might prevent a 5-minute delay and possibly an undeserved miss.

Berger SW Nationals
Photo by Sherri Jo Gallagher.

train wreck Bryan Litz shooting tips ballistics4. Wind Issues. Tricky winds derail many trains. A lot can be written about wind strategies, but here’s a simple tip about how to take the edge off a worse case scenario. You don’t have to start blazing away on the command of “Commence fire”. If the wind is blowing like a bastard when your time starts, just wait! You’re allotted 30 minutes to fire your string in long range slow fire. With average pit service, it might take you 10 minutes if you hustle, less in F-Class. Point being, you have about three times longer than you need. So let everyone else shoot through the storm and look for a window (or windows) of time which are not so adverse. Of course this is a risk, conditions might get worse if you wait. This is where judgment comes in. Just know you have options for managing time and keep an eye on the clock. Saving rounds in a slow fire match is a costly and embarrassing train wreck.

5. Mind Your Physical Health. While traveling for shooting matches, most shooters break their normal patterns of diet, sleep, alcohol consumption, etc. These disruptions to the norm can have detrimental effects on your body and your ability to shoot and even think clearly. If you’re used to an indoor job and eating salads in air-conditioned break rooms and you travel to a week-long rifle match which keeps you on your feet all day in 90-degree heat and high humidity, while eating greasy restaurant food, drinking beer and getting little sleep, then you might as well plan on daily train wrecks. If the match is four hours away, rather than leaving at 3:00 am and drinking five cups of coffee on the morning drive, arrive the night before and get a good night’s sleep.”

Keep focused on the important stuff. You never want to lose sight of the big picture. Keep the important, common sense things in mind as well as the minutia of meplat trimming, weighing powder to the kernel, and cleaning your barrel ’til it’s squeaky clean. Remember, all the little enhancements can’t make up for one big train wreck!

Permalink - Articles, Competition, Shooting Skills, Tech Tip 1 Comment »
January 31st, 2020

SHOT Show 2020 Video Showcase — Notable New Products

Shot Show 2020 Alien pistol rimfire action Jerry Miculek

With miles of aisles and thousands of new products, the annual SHOT Show in Las Vegas is a near-overwhelming circus. There is so much to see, with scores of new products from around the globe. For this story, we start off with the official SHOT Show 2020 Day 4 Highlights video, a revealing look at the SHOT Show experience. Following that you’ll find six videos covering notable new products. Check out new Berger bullets, a new custom rimfire action, plus the radical new $5000 Laugo Alien pistol.

New RimX Rimfire Action with Rem 700 Footprint

We are always interested in new custom rimfire actions. With the growth of the NRL22 rimfire series, and potent rimfire varmint cartridges such as the .17 HMR and .17 WSM, we think the interest in rimfire custom rifles is growing. This video features the new RimX rimfire action. This features a Remington 700 footprint so it can fit a wide variety of stocks made for Rem 700s and Rem clones. That allows PRS guys to cross-train with a rimfire rifle that duplicates the ergonomics and feel of their centerfire match rifle.

Shot Show 2020 rimX rimfire action .22 LR 17 hmr .17 WSM

This RimX action has some very cool features, such as interchangeable bolt heads so it can shoot .22 LR, .17 HMR, and (soon) .17 WSM. RimX action MSRP is $1150.00. Each bolt face features a non-protruding extraction system that allows for a flat breach face barrel to be installed without the need for timed extractor relief. This will make barrel interchangeability and installation easier than ever

Berger Bullets — New LR Hybrid Target and Hunting Bullets

At SHOT Show 2020, the big news from Berger Bullets was the arrival of new Berger Long Range Hybrid Target (LRHT) bullets and hunting bullets. Berger now offers some seriously big LRHT Bullet. Before the show, Berger annouced the 7mm 190gr LRHT. At SHOT on Tuesday Berger showcased two new High-BC .30-Caliber LRHTs — the new 208gr and 220gr projectiles. All these LRHTs feature formed meplats for ultra-consistent BCs. In addition Berger unveiled two new heavy-for-caliber hunting bullets: The 6.5mm 156gr EOL Elite hunter and the .30 Cal 245gr EOL Elite hunter. In this video, Emil Praslick III explains the features of the new LRHT projectiles.

Laugo Arms Alien — Radical Low Bore Axis Pistol Priced at $5000

Laugo Arms states that its Alien pistol has the lowest bore axis of current semi-auto handguns. The barrel is fixed — it does not tilt-up like most semi-autos. Having shot the Alien at Industry Day on 1/20/20, we can confirm that the low bore axis does reduce muzzle flip, allowing very fast follow-up shots. With a fixed center rib, only the sides of the slide move back and forth. Initially only 500 Alien Special Editions will be offered, at the insane price of $5000.00 per pistol. You read that right — $5000 USD. Of course, in a year or two standard models should be available for a fraction of that cost.

This Alien pistol has been hailed as revolutionary. However, the Heckler & Koch P7 series of pistols had most of the Alien’s notable features way back in 1976 — 44 years ago. Like the Alien, the P7m8 and PSP featured a fixed barrel, low bore axis, and gas-delayed blowback operated slide. The HK P7s also had a unique squeeze cocker grip that eliminated the need for a manual safety.

H&K unveiled fixed barrel, low bore axis P7 pistol in 1976, 44 years ago. Production began in 1979.
HK P7m8 PSP

Nightforce Wedge Prism — Gain Elevation for ELR Shooting

The Nightforce Wedge Prism is offered in two variants, 50 MOA or 100 MOA, that install forward of the riflescope to increase the effective elevation travel. The Wedge Prism optically shifts the incoming image to the riflescope by a precise elevation value, which directly adds to the available elevation travel within the riflescope. The Wedge Prism is designed to work optimally with 56mm front objectives. Nightforce says you can position two Wedge Prisms in parallel for maximum effect — up to 200 MOA total. These NF Wedge Prisms are pricey — MSRP is $990.00 for either the 50 MOA or 100 MOA version.

Nightforce Wedge Prism optic ELR Elevation device

Annealing Made Perfect — AMP Mark 2 and New Automated Press

Gavin Gear of UltimateReloader.com checked out the latest offerings from Annealing Made Perfect (AMP), the state-of-the-art microprocessor-controlled induction case annealer. AMP is a New Zealand company run by father and son team Alex and Matt Findlay. Alex has extensive experience in the firearms industry while Matt is a talented engineer and product designer. Along with the AMP Mark 2 and accessories, Alex and Matt showed an advanced, servo-motor bullet seating machine with pressure sensors.

Jerry Miculek with New Mossberg JM 940 Pro Shotgun

GunsAmerica.com Editor True Pierce met with legendary shooter Jerry Miculek at SHOT Show 2020. Jerry showed the notable features of his new scattergun, the JM 940 Pro. This shotgun features a clean-running gas system, nickel boron-coated internal parts, and a competition-level loading port, elevator, and follower. For more info, check out the full article on GunsAmerica.com.

mossberg jm 940 miculek shotgun

Bonus — Ryan Cleckner Chats about Gun University

The Gun University Website is a new resource for firearms news and technical information. We recently highlighted Gun University’s report on important ITAR rule changes that will affect firearms manufacturers, parts makers, and gunsmiths. One of the key contributors to Gun University is Ryan Cleckner, a former Army Ranger sniper instructor, attorney, and author of the Long-range Shooting Handbook. In this video Ryan talks about Gun University, his NSSF video series, and his ideas for growing the shooting sports.

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January 10th, 2020

New Berger 7mm 190 Grain Long Range Hybrid Target Bullet

Berger 7mm F-Open Hybrid Long Range Target Bullet new high bc

Just in time for the Berger SW Nationals, Berger has released a class-leading new 7mm bullet — the 190 Grain Long Range Hybrid Target (LRHT). The new 190-grainer boasts a “jump-tolerant” hybrid ogive profile along with formed meplat (bullet tip) for more consistent Ballistic Coefficient (BC). In fact, with its new MRT (Meplat Reduction Technology) nose, Doppler Radar testing confirms less than 1% BC variation from bullet to bullet. While a high BC is of course desirable for competitive shooting, shot-to-shot BC consistency is most critical when engaging targets to 600 yards and beyond. The new 7mm 190gr LRHT’s BC numbers are very impressive: 0.751 G1 and 0.384 G7.

Designed for F-Open competition, the 7mm 190gr LRHTs are optimized for cartridges such as .284 Winchester, 7mm WSM, 7mm SAUM, and 7mm Remington Magnum among others.

No you don’t need a new barrel to shoot the 190s. If you are running Berger 184s in a 1:9″ or faster twist you should be fine. Berger states: “The 190gr LRHT is complementary to the industry-leading Berger 184gr F-Open Target bullet with an identical stability factor and improved ballistics when launched from 1:9″-twist barrels.”

Berger 7mm F-Open Hybrid Long Range Target Bullet new high bc

Meplat Reduction Technology for More Consistent BCs
Utilizing advanced and proprietary manufacturing processes, Berger’s innovative Meplat Reduction Technology (MRT) applies controlled pressure along the nose of each LRHT bullet. Berger states this delivers ” a homogeneous and repeatable profile for the industry’s most consistent Ballistic Coefficients”.

“With improved MRT consistency contributing to its superior ballistic coefficient and form factor, the 190 is one of our highest performance projectiles to date. They provide minimal dispersion and more hits on target for F-Open competitors, long range shooters and larger capacity 7mm enthusiasts.” said Garett Stoddard, Berger’s Lead Production Engineer.

The new Berger 7mm 190 Grain Long Range Hybrid Target Bullets are shipping now to Berger authorized retailers.

Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Competition, New Product, News 1 Comment »
December 12th, 2019

Berger Releases NEW 6.5mm 144gr LR Hybrid Target Bullet

New berger 109 grain hybrid bullet LRHT long range hybrid target

A hot new 6.5mm match bullet has arrived — the Berger 144-grain Hybrid. This new 144-grainer, officially called the Long Range Hybrid Target (LRHT), features a formed meplat (bullet tip) for more consistent Ballistic Coefficient (BC). With its new MRT (Meplat Reduction Technology) nose, the new 144gr LRHT boasts a high-BC, “jump-tolerant” hybrid ogive profile along with an extremely consistent BC. In fact, Doppler Radar testing confirms less than 1% BC variation from bullet to bullet. While a high BC is of course desirable for competitive shooting, shot-to-shot BC consistency is most critical when engaging targets to 600 yards and beyond. The 144’s BC numbers are very impressive for a 6.5mm bullet: 0.655 G1 and 0.336 G7.

New berger 109 grain hybrid bullet LRHT long range hybrid target

AccurateShooter.com plans to test these new 144s very soon — we’ve sent some to championship-level shooters. The new 144s should prove very popular. These bullets are optimized for leading accuracy and long-range cartridges such as 6.5mm Creedmoor, 6.5×47 Lapua, Remington .260, 6.5-284, and 6.5 PRC among others. NOTE: Berger states that the new 144gr LRHT offers the same stability factor as Berger’s 140gr Hybrid Target. Accordingly, the new 144-grainer can be considered a “direct replacement” for the proven Berger 140gr Hybrids. And YES, the 144gr LRHT will work in 1:8″-twist barrels.

“The 6.5mm 144 Grain LRHTs offer several advantages”, said Bryan Litz, Berger’s Chief Ballistician. “The ultra-sleek profile provides a higher Ballistic Coefficient (BC) resulting in less wind drift at all ranges. The proprietary MRT manufacturing process also provides a higher and more consistent BC, important for reducing dispersion at long range.”

“During our initial Doppler Radar testing we concluded that the new 6.5mm 144gr Long Range Hybrid Target bullets consistently displayed ballistic coefficients with standard deviations far less than one percent of the documented average” reports Garett Stoddard, Berger Engineer. “Driven at muzzle velocities typical for today’s popular 6.5mm cartridges, that variation translates to only a 2″ vertical group dispersion at 1000 yards. [This demonstrates] the advantage of the Meplat Reduction Technology, as well as the importance of ballistic coefficient consistency.”

The new 6.5mm 144 Grain Long Range Hybrid Target is the latest offering in Berger’s impressive Long Range Hybrid Target (LRHT) product line, which also includes .224-Cal and 6mm projectiles:

New berger 109 grain hybrid bullet LRHT long range hybrid target

Meplat Reduction Technology for More Consistent BCs
Berger’s new 6.5mm 144gr Long Range Hybrid Target is designed to provide Benchrest, F-Class, and PRS enthusiasts a class-leading level of precision and consistency. Utilizing advanced/proprietary manufacturing processes, Berger’s Meplat Reduction Technology™ (MRT™) System applies controlled pressure along the projectile nose, producing a homogeneous and repeatable bullet profile. This yields what Berger claims are “the industry’s most consistent Ballistic Coefficients (BC)”.

The Berger 6.5mm 144 Grain Long Range Hybrid Target™ Bullets will be available very soon at authorized Berger Retailers. Use the Berger Dealer Locator to find a store near you.

Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo, New Product, News 4 Comments »
December 10th, 2019

How Changes in Cartridge OAL Can Alter Pressure and Velocity

Berger Bullets COAL length cartridge

Figure 1. When the bullet is seated farther out of the case, there is more volume available for powder. This enables the cartridge to generate higher muzzle velocity with the same pressure.

Berger Bullets COAL length cartridgeEffects Of Cartridge Over All Length (COAL) And Cartridge Base To Ogive (CBTO) – Part 1
by Bryan Litz for Berger Bullets.
Many shooters are not aware of the dramatic effects that bullet seating depth can have on the pressure and velocity generated by a rifle cartridge. Cartridge Overall Length (COAL) is also a variable that can be used to fine-tune accuracy. It’s also an important consideration for rifles that need to feed rounds through a magazine. In this article, we’ll explore the various effects of COAL, and what choices a shooter can make to maximize the effectiveness of their hand loads.

Sporting Arms and Ammunition Manufacturers’ Institute (SAAMI)
Most loading manuals (including the Berger Manual), present loading data according to SAAMI (Sporting Arms and Ammunition Manufacturers’ Institute) standards. SAAMI provides max pressure, COAL and many other specifications for commercial cartridges so that rifle makers, ammo makers, and hand loaders can standardize their products so they all work together. As we’ll see later in this article, these SAAMI standards are in many cases outdated and can dramatically restrict the performance potential of a cartridge.

Bullet seating depth is an important variable in the accuracy equation. In many cases, the SAAMI-specified COAL is shorter than what a hand loader wants to load their rounds to for accuracy purposes. In the case where a hand loader seats the bullets longer than SAAMI specified COAL, there are some internal ballistic effects that take place which are important to understand.

Effects of Seating Depth / COAL on Pressure and Velocity
The primary effect of loading a cartridge long is that it leaves more internal volume inside the cartridge. This extra internal volume has a well known effect; for a given powder charge, there will be less pressure and less velocity produced because of the extra empty space. Another way to look at this is you have to use more powder to achieve the same pressure and velocity when the bullet is seated out long. In fact, the extra powder you can add to a cartridge with the bullet seated long will allow you to achieve greater velocity at the same pressure than a cartridge with a bullet seated short.

When you think about it, it makes good sense. After all, when you seat the bullet out longer and leave more internal case volume for powder, you’re effectively making the cartridge into a bigger cartridge by increasing the size of the combustion chamber. Figure 1 illustrates the extra volume that’s available for powder when the bullet is seated out long.

Before concluding that it’s a good idea to start seating your bullets longer than SAAMI spec length, there are a few things to consider.

Geometry of a Chamber Throat
The chamber in a rifle will have a certain throat length which will dictate how long a bullet can be loaded. The throat is the forward portion of the chamber that has no rifling. The portion of the bullet’s bearing surface that projects out of the case occupies the throat (see Figure 2).

Berger Bullets COAL length cartridge

The length of the throat determines how much of the bullet can stick out of the case. When a cartridge is chambered and the bullet encounters the beginning of the rifling, known as the lands, it’s met with hard resistance. This COAL marks the maximum length that a bullet can be seated. When a bullet is seated out to contact the lands, its initial forward motion during ignition is immediately resisted by an engraving force.

Seating a bullet against the lands causes pressures to be elevated noticeably higher than if the bullet were seated just a few thousandths of an inch off the lands.

A very common practice in precision reloading is to establish the COAL for a bullet that’s seated to touch the lands. This is a reference length that the hand loader works from when searching for the optimal seating depth for precision. Many times, the best seating depth is with the bullet touching or very near the lands. However, in some rifles, the best seating depth might be 0.100″ or more off the lands. This is simply a variable the hand loader uses to tune the precision of a rifle.

CLICK HERE to Read Full Article with More Info

Article sourced by EdLongrange. We welcome tips from readers.
Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Reloading 2 Comments »
October 21st, 2019

Bargain Finder 213: AccurateShooter’s Deals of the Week

Accurateshooter Bargain Finder Deals of Week

At the request of our readers, we provide select “Deals of the Week”. Every Sunday afternoon or Monday morning we offer our Best Bargain selections. Here are some of the best deals on firearms, hardware, reloading components, optics, and shooting accessories. Be aware that sale prices are subject to change, and once clearance inventory is sold, it’s gone for good. You snooze you lose.

1. Sportsman’s Warehouse — Great Gun Sale (100 guns on sale)

great gun sale

If you’re in the market for a new handgun, rifle, or shotgun, then head over to the Sportsman’s Warehouse Great Gun Sale. There are 100 different firearms on sale — hunting rifles, shotguns, defensive pistols — you name it. There are so many options, we decided to link the full sale page, so you can pick your own favorites from 100 different gun options.

2. EuroOptic.com — Vortex Scope Clearance Sale, Save Hundreds

Vortex Optics Viper Razor Scope discount sale

Vortex scopes have become very popular for good reason. Vortex scopes deliver great performance for the price and Vortex offers a rock-solid lifetime warranty. Right now at EuroOptic.com you can save hundreds on Vortex Viper, Razor, and Strike Eagle riflescopes. Six of the deals are shown above, but there are more options on EuroOptic’s Vortex Close-Out Sale Page.

3. Grafs.com — Berger .22-Cal 85.5 gr Bullets, $37.99

berger bullets

Did you read our recent article on the new Meplat Reduction Technology (MRT) that Berger is incorporating into their bullets and couldn’t wait to grab some? Grafs.com now has the 85.5 gr 22-caliber (.224) bullets in stock. This high-BC .22 caliber bullet could potentially be a game-change for F-TR and Palma shooters. The BC is very consistent and initial testing has shown great accuracy potential.

4. Gander Outdoors — .308 Win Ruger Precision Rifle, $799.82

ruger precision

The Ruger Precision Rifle (RPR) is hard to beat for the price among entry-level chassis rifles. And here is one of the best prices for an RPR that we’ve ever seen. If you’re in the market for an RPR, grab this .308 Win RPR for a just $799.82. If you’re looking for a 6mm version, check out this Ruger Precision Rifle in 6mm Creedmoor for $1071.99.

5. Bruno’s — RCBS ChargeMaster Combo, $259.95

chargemaster rcbs

Newer, App-controlled powder scale/dispensers have recently entered the marketplace, but the original RCBS ChargeMaster Combo Powder Dispenser continues to be a reliable workhorse preferred by many dedicated hand-loaders. Grab one of these ChargeMaster Combos for just $259.95 at Bruno’s. That’s a steal — other vendors are charging $348.00 or more! This ChargeMaster will provide years of reliable service. We do recommend using the check weights before each loading session to calibrate the scale.

6. Bruno’s — Flavio Fare Triggers Now in Stock

flavio fare trigger

If you’re looking for a trigger that is amazingly crisp and has the lightest, most reliable trigger pull on the market, then check out Flavio Fare Triggers. These triggers are used by some of the top shooters in the country. If you looking for a competitive advantage, grab one and see what the hype is about.

7. Amazon — BOG-POD Field Bi-Pod, $38.68

field bipod

If you’re looking for a versatile, stable and easy-to-carry field support, check out the latest BOG-POD Camo Bipod. Featuring adjustable legs with a 40-degree max angle, the BOG-POD Bipod can be used while sitting, standing, or kneeling. This kid of support is highly recommended for shooting on hills where a conventional bipod doesn’t offer enough elevation. Watch the video below to see the BOG-POD in action.

8. Amazon — Scent Safe Travel Bag, $26.81

scent safe travel bag

Here’s a valuable product for hunters. This Scent-Safe product helps mask odors that give away your location to your prey. Store your gear in the Hunter Specialties Scent Safe Travel Bag to help ensure a successful hunt. As one reviewer said, “I use these to store my bow hunting clothes during and between seasons, after washing with them scent control soap, to keep outside scents away. I add a few earth scented wafers to the inner pockets which does a good job adding a cover scent. Take the whole bag with me on hunts and just remove what I need for each hunt. What I don’t use stays in the bag and scent free for the next hunt.”

9. CHL Targets — Official Competition Targets and Fun Targets

CHL Targets

Finding quality competition targets (at a good price) can be challenging if you don’t need 300 at a time. CHL Targets has a very complete selection of targets at great prices. CHL sells official NRA, IBS, and NBRSA match targets. In addition, CHL Targets offers splatter-type reactive targets. All competition, sight-in, and fun targets are sold at very competitive prices. Quantity discounts are offered for ranges and clubs.

10. Midsouth Shooters — 17 HMR V-Max 500 Round Brick, $89.99

17 hmr ammo

Here’s a great deal for varmint shooters with 17 HMR rifles. Midsouth has the Hornady 17 HMR brick of 500 for a low price of $89.99. That works out to just 18 cents per round — cheap enough that you can blast sage rats all days long and never worry about running out of ammo.

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October 9th, 2019

New High-BC 85.5 grain .224-Caliber Bullet from Berger

Berger hybrid target MRT Meplat reduction technology 85.5 grain .224 22 caliber bullet

This could be big news for F-TR and Palma competition, where cartridge options are limited to .223 Rem and .308 Win. Berger is introducing a NEW, very high-BC, 22-caliber Long Range Hybrid Target Bullet. Stated Ballistic Coefficents (BCs) are: 0.524 G1 and 0.268 G7. That’s near the top among .22-cal bullets and makes this 85.5 grain projectile a very viable long-range option. Want to try some? These should be available very soon. Pre-order now from Creedmoor Sports, MidwayUSA, and other vendors.

» SEE Full Report with Test Targets on Berger Site

Berger hybrid target MRT Meplat reduction technology 85.5 grain .224 22 caliber bullet

This new 85.5gr bullets boast smaller, more uniform meplats, giving them a higher long-range BC. The meplat enhancement is achieved with “Meplat Reduction Technology” (MRT). Berger Engineer Garett Stoddard, who spearheaded the MRT project, explains: “Every bullet nose is formed with optimal swage pressure determined by force instead of length. In addition to reducing a projectile’s drag by shrinking its meplat diameter, this technique takes the inherent meplat inconsistencies that plague OTM style projectiles and brings them closer to the rotational axis. This is a key factor to the consistent balance of the bullet in flight.” The new 85.5s, like all other Berger projectiles, are made with precise Berger/J-4 bullet jackets which boast +/- .0003″ jacket TIR (total indicated runout).

Berger hybrid target MRT Meplat reduction technology 85.5 grain .224 22 caliber bullet

7-Twist Barrels Recommend for new 85.5gr MRT Berger
The 85.5gr Long Range Hybrid Target Bullet’s G7 BC of .268 is achieved with optimal stability from a 1:7″-twist barrel. Berger says “Excellent accuracy may also be attained with 1:8″-twist rifle barrels, resulting in a slightly decreased BC value”.

Initial Test Results Are Very Positive
A third party tester, shooting the new 85.5-grainer in Arizona, reported excellent performance at 1000 yards: “The projectile performed extremely well at 1000 yard in spite of only being driven to ~2800 to 2850 fps. This projectile is clearly competitive at 1000 yards in a Palma rifle as tested. With a slightly longer throat and a faster-twist barrel, I am confident the 85.5 Hybrid would be a viable option for those looking to shoot .223 Rem in Long Range competitions.”

Meplat Reduction Technology Enhances Shot-to-Shot Consistency
Berger says: “Utilizing advanced and proprietary manufacturing processes, Berger’s innovative Meplat Reduction Technology (MRT) System applies controlled pressure along the projectile nose, producing a homogeneous and repeatable bullet profile for the industry’s most consistent Ballistic Coefficients (BC). While a high BC is desirable to competitive shooters, shot-to-shot BC consistency is critical when engaging targets to 1000 yards and beyond.”

Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Competition, New Product 3 Comments »
September 5th, 2019

G1 vs. G7 Ballistic Coefficient Models — What You Need to Know

G1 G7 BC drag models

Over the past 12 months, this article was one of the TOP TEN most-read Daily Bulletin features. We’re reprising it today for those who may have missed it the first time. The above diagram comes from a TiborasurasRex YouTube Video comparing G1 and G7 BC models. CLICK HERE to watch the video.

The better, up-to-date ballistics programs let you select either G1 or G7 Ballistic Coefficient (BC) values when calculating a trajectory. The ballistic coefficient (BC) of a body is a measure of its ability to overcome air resistance in flight. You’ve probably seen that G7 values are numerically lower than G1 values for the same bullet (typically). But that doesn’t mean you should select a G1 value simply because it is higher.

Some readers are not quite sure about the difference between G1 and G7 models. One forum member wrote us: “I went on the JBM Ballistics website to use the web-based Trajectory Calculator and when I got to the part that gives you a choice to choose between G1 and G7 BC, I was stumped. What determines how, or which one to use?”

The simple answer is the G1 value normally works better for shorter flat-based bullets, while the G7 value should work better for longer, boat-tailed bullets.

G1 vs. G7 Ballistic Coefficients — Which Is Right for You?
G1 and G7 refer both refer to aerodynamic drag models based on particular “standard projectile” shapes. The G1 shape looks like a flat-based bullet. The G7 shape is quite different, and better approximates the geometry of a modern long-range bullet. So, when choosing your drag model, G1 is preferrable for flat-based bullets, while G7 is ordinarily a “better fit” for longer, boat-tailed bullets.

G1 G7 Ballistic coefficients

Drag Models — G7 is better than G1 for Long-Range Bullets
Many ballistics programs still offer only the default G1 drag model. Bryan Litz, author of Applied Ballistics for Long Range Shooting, believes the G7 standard is preferrable for long-range, low-drag bullets: “Part of the reason there is so much ‘slop’ in advertised BCs is because they’re referenced to the G1 standard which is very speed sensitive. The G7 standard is more appropriate for long range bullets. Here’s the results of my testing on two low-drag, long-range boat-tail bullets, so you can see how the G1 and G7 Ballistic coefficients compare:

G1 BCs, averaged between 1500 fps and 3000 fps:
Berger 180 VLD: 0.659 lb/in²
JLK 180: 0.645 lb/in²

The reason the BC for the JLK is less is mostly because the meplat was significantly larger on the particular lot that I tested (0.075″ vs 0.059″; see attached drawings).

For bullets like these, it’s much better to use the G7 standard. The following BCs are referenced to the G7 standard, and are constant for all speeds.

G7 BCs:
Berger 180 VLD: 0.337 lb/in²
JLK 180: 0.330 lb/in²

Many modern ballistics programs, including the free online JBM Ballistics Program, are able to use BCs referenced to G7 standards. When available, these BCs are more appropriate for long range bullets, according to Bryan.

[Editor’s NOTE: BCs are normally reported simply as an 0.XXX number. The lb/in² tag applies to all BCs, but is commonly left off for simplicity.]

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August 5th, 2019

BargainFinder 202: AccurateShooter’s Deals of the Week

Accurateshooter Bargain Finder Deals of Week

At the request of our readers, we provide select “Deals of the Week”. Every Monday morning we offer our Best Bargain selections. Here are some of the best deals on firearms, hardware, reloading components, optics, and shooting accessories. Be aware that sale prices are subject to change, and once clearance inventory is sold, it’s gone for good. You snooze you lose.

1. Walmart — Stack-On 18-Gun Security Cabinet, $159.99

stackon security cabinet gun storage safe

This Stack-On Sentinel Security Cabinet holds 18 rifles up to 54″ tall or nine firearms with extra storage. Adjustable, padded shelves can be placed on either right or left side. This unit features a 3-point locking system for greater security. No this safe is NOT as strong or secure as a quality, thick-walled gun-vault, but this 55″x21″x18″ Security Cabinet can work well as a secondary safe for your workroom, vacation cabin, or even an RV. Right now Walmart has “Roll-Back” pricing — $159.99 with FREE delivery. That’s right — pay just $159.99 for the safe delivered to your home or the nearest Walmart.

2. Bruno Shooters Supply — Berger Bullets at Great Prices

“Berger

Match season is in full swing — so make sure you don’t run short on bullets. One of our go-to sources for reloading components is Bruno Shooters Supply. Bruno’s just recently updated its website, so you should check out the new features. While you’re there, look at Bruno’s selection of Berger bullets advertised at “lowest prices on the internet”. Berger match bullets are in high demand, but Bruno’s is offering great prices on many popular calibers and bullet weights.

3. EuroOptic — Sale on Vortex Strike Eagles, $299.99

Vortex Razor Viper $150 off sale Strike Eagle SFP scope optics illuminated reticle

Need a good basic optic for your hunting or varmint rifle? Have a tight budget but still need good glass and adjustable parallax? Then check out these Vortex Strike Eagles. Save $140-$150 now at EuroOptic.com. Sale price is just $299.99 for the 4-24x50mm and also $299.99 for the 3-18x44mm. EuroOptic’s Jason says these scope are a “killer value” with “target turrets, parallax adjustment close enough for rimfire, and good zoom range”. These Strike Eagles are also fairly short and light-weight, so they are good for hunters. Both these Second Focal Plane scopes offer 1/4-MOA clicks and nice EBR-4 illuminated reticles.

4. Bullet Central — Kelbly Atlas Tactical Action, $895

Kelbly Atlas Tactical

Kelbly actions are excellent. The Atlas series are rugged actions for practical/tactical and hunting use. This action features a Black Nitride finish so you can run minimal lubrication. The Atlas action comes with +20 MOA integral Picatinny Rail plus a nice fluted bolt. We also like the super-reliable TG mechanical ejector. This mag-fed Kelbly Atlas action takes Accuracy International and AI-type single-stack magazines. This fine Kelbly Atlas Tactical Action is now on sale at Bullet Central for the low price of $895.00.

5. Amazon — Samsung 7″ Android WiFi Tablet, $127.99

amazon samsung tablet 7

Versatile and totable, this compact Samsung Galaxy 7″ tablet computer is just what you need at the range to run your Ballistics Apps, get WiFi images from your Target Cam, or “talk” to your LabRadar. The Galaxy Tab A 7.0 inch can also get internet weather reports and email. This is a modern device with myriad capabilities — all for under $130.00. It has a micro-SD slot so you can easily add more storage. You won’t find more bang for the buck in a digital device, and it even comes with free Tech support. NOTE: This is WiFi only — it is NOT a like a cellphone. It works via an internet connection (and blue-tooth).

6. Walther — PPQ and PPS Pistols, 30-Day Money Back Guarantee

We’ve heard of money-back guarantees on household products, and even pizzas. But never firearms. This is quite a unique offer. Walther is so confident that you will fall in love with Walther PPQ or PPS pistols that the German gun-maker is offering a 30-Day Money Back Guarantee.

Shoot it, if you like it, keep it. But if you don’t, you can send it back to Walther for a full refund. Walther even pays shipping! For more info visit www.WaltherArms.com. This offers applies to ALL Walther PPQ and PPS models.

7. Grizzly — Bald Eagle Priming Press, $80.97

grizzly priming press

Any serious competitor will tell you that consistent primer seating is one of the most critical steps in reloading. There are lots of choices out there for bench and hand-held primers but NONE of then match the Grizzly priming press which can be found for $80.97. It features a beautifully-made system that is click adjustable to .002″ and incredibly repeatable. If you’re in the market for something that’s easy on the hands and works like units that cost hundreds more give this one a look.

8. MidwayUSA — MagnetoSpeed Sporter Chronograph, $153.74

Deals of Week Magnetospeed sporter Kit

If you have been waiting to get a Magnetospeed… wait no longer. Priced at just $153.74 at MidwayUSA, the Magnetospeed Sporter model costs less than half as much as Magnetospeed’s V3 models. This chronograph attaches directly to your barrel so you don’t have to go downrange to position tripods and set up skyscreens. For most people the Sporter Model contains all the features they need. Using Magnetospeed’s XFR adapter (sold separately), data can be transferred easily from the display module to your mobile device. READ Magnetospeed Sporter Review. NOTE: You need to add the item to cart to see the $153.74 price. This typically sells elsewhere for around $180.00.

9. Amazon — RCBS Quick-Change Powder Funnel Kit, $11.04

Amazon RCBS Powder funnel quick kit

This versatile funnel system works with nearly all cartridge types, from 17 Remington up to 500 S&W. Even if you have a fancy metal funnel, it’s worth having one of these RCBS Kits on your reloading bench. The RCBS Quick Change Powder Funnel Kit features five (5) adapters that match case mouth diameter for specific cartridge ranges: 17-20 caliber, 22-264 caliber, 27-284 caliber, 30-375 caliber, 40 caliber and higher. The Funnel Kit includes a handy 4-inch drop tube. Price is $11.04 at Amazon with free shipping on orders over $25 total.

10. Amazon — Two Rolls of 3″ Neon Target Stickers, $12.99

Red Orange Neon 3

We like these bright, Neon EasyShot 3″ target stickers. They are big enough to see easily at 600 yards, giving you a 1/2 MOA target center at that distance. For $12.99 at Amazon.com, you get 250 3″-diameter self-adhesive centers (125 targets per roll) that stick to almost any surface The high-contrast fluorescent red/orange color provides an excellent HI-VIZ aiming point, along with good contrast for bullet holes that fall within the 3″ circle. To help line up your reticle cross-hairs, the target centers feature black markers at 3, 6, 9, and 12 0’Clock. NOTE: These stickers qualify for FREE Shipping.

Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Handguns, Hot Deals, Optics 4 Comments »
July 12th, 2019

Shooting Brain Trust — Wind Wisdom of Emil Praslick III

Berger Bullets Applied Ballistics Wind Reading Zero direction speed windy

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

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

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

Emil Praslick III Berger SWN Wind calling reading

Video TWO: Determining the Direction of the Wind

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

Video THREE: The No Wind Zero Setting

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

Emil Praslick III KO2M

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

Permalink - Articles, - Videos, Competition, Shooting Skills No Comments »
July 5th, 2019

Optimize Bullet RPM with Berger Twist Rate Stability Calculator

Berger twist rate calculator

Berger twist rate calculatorBerger Twist-Rate Stability Calculator
On the Berger Bullets website you’ll find a handy Twist-Rate Stability Calculator that predicts your gyroscopic stability factor (SG) based on mulitiple variables: velocity, bullet length, bullet weight, barrel twist rate, ambient temperature, and altitude. This cool tool tells you if your chosen bullet will really stabilize in your barrel.


CLICK HERE to Go to TWIST RATE CALCULATOR PAGE »

How to Use Berger’s Twist Rate Calculator
Using the Twist Rate Calculator is simple. Just enter the bullet DIAMETER (e.g. .264), bullet WEIGHT (in grains), and bullet overall LENGTH (in inches). On its website, Berger conveniently provides this info for all its bullet types. For other brands, we suggest you weigh three examples of your chosen bullet, and also measure the length on three samples. Then use the average weight and length of the three. To calculate bullet stability, simply enter your bullet data (along with observed Muzzle Velocity, outside Temperature, and Altitude) and click “Calculate SG”. Try different twist rate numbers (and recalculate) until you get an SG value of 1.4 (or higher).

Gyroscopic Stability (SG) and Twist Rate
Berger’s Twist Rate Calculator provides a predicted stability value called “SG” (for “Gyroscopic Stability”). This indicates the Gyroscopic Stability applied to the bullet by spin. This number is derived from the basic equation: SG = (rigidity of the spinning mass)/(overturning aerodynamic torque).

Berger twist rate calculator

If you have an SG under 1.0, your bullet is predicted not to stabilize. If you have between 1.0 and 1.1 SG, your bullet may or may not stabilize. If you have an SG greater than 1.1, your bullet should stabilize under optimal conditions, but stabilization might not be adequate when temperature, altitude, or other variables are less-than-optimal. That’s why Berger normally recommends at least 1.5 SG to get out of the “Marginal Stability” zone.

In his book Applied Ballistics For Long-Range Shooting, Bryan Litz (Berger Ballistician) recommends at least a 1.4 SG rating when selecting a barrel twist for a particular bullet. This gives you a safety margin for shooting under various conditions, such as higher or lower altitudes or temperatures.

Story idea from EdLongrange. We welcome reader submissions.
Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Tech Tip 1 Comment »
June 16th, 2019

Sunday GunDay — 6-6.5×47 Lapua Varmint Slayer

6mm 6.5x47 Lapua 6-6.5x47 varmint rifle mcmillan BAT action 6mmAI

Soon after Lapua released the 6.5×47 cartridge, wildcatters recognized the potential of a necked-down 6mm version of the case. The 6-6.5×47 has emerged as a great, do-it-all cartridge that performs well in High Power competition, 600- and 1000-yard benchrest, and PRS tactical matches. But the 6-6.5×47 is not just for paper-punching. An efficient cartridge with great inherent accuracy, the 6-6.5×47 can be an excellent, flat-shooting, long-range varmint round. Here we feature Stan Stewart’s BAT-actioned 6-6.5×47 varminter. Fitted with a Krieger 1:10″ barrel, Stan’s rifle excels with a wide variety of varmint bullets. Whether driving 70-grainers at 3700 fps, or pushing the Berger 88gr High-BC FB bullet at 3400 fps, this 6-6.5×47 delivers half-MOA (or better) accuracy, in a well-balanced, easy-handling rifle.

The 6-6.5×47 for Precision Long-Range Varminting

6mm 6.5x47 Lapua 6-6.5x47 varmint rifle mcmillan BAT action 6mmAI
The rifle carries a 12-42x56mm Nightforce NSX in Nightforce rings “hand-lapped for optimal fit/alignment”.

‘Seller’s Remorse’ Spurs 6mm Project
Report by Stan Stewart

After selling my 6mm Remington Ackley Improved a couple of years ago and wishing I hadn’t, I begun to think about a new custom rifle for work on Prairie Dog towns and New York wood chucks at 600+ yards. I have a .223 AR and 22-250 for medium ranges but I missed my 6mm AI for long-range work so I started asking questions.

The 22-250 is a fine chambering, but it is hard on barrels, and I think the 6mms may have an accuracy edge out past 400 yards. Also, shooters today enjoy a vast collection of really great 6mm bullets. Barrel life and bullet options were two main reasons I decided to build a 6mm rather than another .224-caliber gun. But the question remained… what 6mm chambering to choose?

I started doing serious research on the 6-6.5×47. I received a lot of good advice from AccurateShooter.com and other websites on the pros and cons. I also talked to gunsmiths — quite a few recommended the new cartridge as well. Some of the cartridge attributes I liked was the small rifle primer, enough case capacity to efficiently reach 3700 fps with a 70gr bullet and 3400 fps with an 85-grainer without being terribly over-bore. Most important was the 6-6.5×47’s reputation for inherent accuracy without being finicky like my 6mm AI. So, having chosen my cartridge, I started asking for gunsmith recommendations. Again the folks on the AccurateShooter.com Forum were very helpful. After many conversations I settled on Dave Bruno in Dayton, Pennsylvania. He was a good choice.

Putting Together the New Rig with Premium Components
From the get-go, I knew I wanted a BAT action and Krieger barrel. BAT Machine and Krieger Barrels enjoy a great reputation in the shooting industry. BATs are beautifully-machined, smooth, and strong. Krieger cut-rifled barrels are known for dependable accuracy and long barrel life. While many 6-6.5×47 shooters choose an 8-twist barrel to shoot the 100-108gr bullets, I would be using smaller, varmint-weight bullets, so I selected a 1:10″ twist Krieger. This would allow me to shoot bullets from 60 grains up to 90 grains. Dave chambered the barrel with a .269″ neck and fluted the barrel to save weight. I also had Dave install a Vais muzzle brake. Dave fitted the BAT with a 2 oz. Jewell trigger, mounted a +20 MOA scope rail, then pillar-bedded the BAT into a McMillan Hunter-Class-style fiberglass stock.

6mm 6.5x47 Lapua 6-6.5x47 varmint rifle mcmillan BAT action 6mmAI

Load Development for Varminting

I had selected a few powders and bullets recommended by other 6-6.5×47 shooters and started by seating all the bullets .005″ off the lands. The powders I selected were Varget, Vihtavuori N-550, and Reloder 15.

6mm 6.5x47 Lapua 6-6.5x47 varmint rifle mcmillan BAT action 6mmAI

I was very pleased with the 88gr Bergers. In initial testing, they grouped well and I was able to drive them to 3400 fps easily. As I wanted a gun for long-range varmint work, I was hoping the 1:10″-twist barrel would provide enough stability for the heavier weight bullets. It did — the 10-twist worked great! I was able to shoot the lighter weight bullets and the 88s were superb. With a BC of 0.391, leaving the barrel at 3400, these bullets were still traveling at 2600 fps at 600 yards!

6mm 6.5x47 Lapua 6-6.5x47 varmint rifle mcmillan Berger BAT Action

I did a lot of testing, recording group sizes for a variety of different bullets (see below) and powders. With group size/velocity data in a spreadsheet I was able to “crunch the numbers” and choose my preferred loads. The data drew a clear picture of what the rifle shot best. Here is a chart showing comparative group sizes, arranged by bullet type. On the last three lines, powders are listed by average for all bullets.

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6-6.5x47 Lapua Varmint rifleFinal Thoughts on the 6-6.5×47 Lapua
I have owned three rifles chambered in 22-250 and will always own a rifle in this caliber because it is inherently accurate and drives a 50gr bullet at 3800 fps. No question the 22-250 can be deadly out to 500 yards. However, I’ve found that shooting past 400 yards with the light bullets is difficult if there is any wind at all. That’s why I liked my 6mm AI for those longer shots and why I decided on the 6-6.5×47 Lapua. I couldn’t be happier with my choice. The only thing that could make it better is if Lapua would produce the 6-6.5×47 as an “official” factory 6mm cartridge with 6mm necks right out of the box. But overall, I am very happy with the cartridge, and I thank Dave Bruno for producing a superbly accurate varmint rifle.

CLICK HERE for FULL Story with 6-6.5×47 Load DATA »

Permalink - Articles, Hunting/Varminting, Reloading 2 Comments »
June 10th, 2019

Bargain Finder 194: AccurateShooter’s Deals of the Week

Accurateshooter Bargain Finder Deals of Week

At the request of our readers, we provide select “Deals of the Week”. Every Monday morning we offer our Best Bargain selections. Here are some of the best deals on firearms, hardware, reloading components, optics, and shooting accessories. Be aware that sale prices are subject to change, and once clearance inventory is sold, it’s gone for good. You snooze you lose.

1. Stocky’s Stocks — LRC Stocks with AccuBlock Now $188.88

stockys stocks LRC long range composite accublock

There’s a great sale going on this week at Stocky’s Stocks. This sale covers many different LRC (Long Range Composite) stock styles, all with the built-in AccuBlock System. Chose a high-comb benchrest style LRC stock, a hunter-style MRC stock, or the new LRC thumbhole stock. All are now just $188.88, even with premium finishes, such as Kryptec Camo. The Stocky’s LRC series with AccuBlock Bedding System is a terrific choice for a varmint rifle, and you won’t find a better value anywhere.

2. Bruno’s — Huge Sale on Barrels, Bullets, Brass, Actions & More

Bruno Bruno's Sale Barrels powder

There’s a big SALE going on right now at Bruno Shooters Supply. Save $20 on Krieger Barrels for starters, then you can also save on bullets, brass, powder, and loaded ammo. In addition, high-end BAT actions and Flavio triggers are on sale. Rimfire shooters will find some excellent ammo deals, and ALL Hornady products are discounted. But you MUST ACT SOON! This SALE ENDS Monday evening, June 10, 2019 at 11:59 PM Arizona Time. Discounts apply to items in-stock ONLY.

3. EuroOptic — Great Sale on Vortex Strike Eagles

Vortex Razor Viper $150 off sale Strike Eagle SFP scope optics illuminated reticle

Need a good basic optic for your hunting or varmint rifle? Have a tight budget but still need good glass and adjustable parallax? Then check out these Vortex Strike Eagles. Save $140-$150 now at EuroOptic.com. Sale price is just $349.99 for the 4-24x50mm and $309.99 for the 3-18x44mm. EuroOptic’s Jason says these scope are a “killer value” with “target turrets, parallax adjustment close enough for rimfire, and good zoom range”. These Strike Eagles are also fairly short and light-weight, so they are good for hunters. Both these Second Focal Plane scopes offer 1/4-MOA clicks and nice EBR-4 illuminated reticles.

4. Midsouth — MTM Shooting Range Box, $39.20

MTM Shooting Range Box case travel Midsouth Amazon sale discount

The MTM Shooting Range Box employs a two-piece design. The removable top storage compartment holds oils, solvents, brushes, patches, and small accessories. Unlatch the top box to reveal a large, deep storage area that will hold tools, earmuffs, ammo boxes, and other larger items. With 18 compartments, MTM Shooting Range Boxes are big enough to hold pretty much everything you need at the range (except shooting rests). Plus there are cradles so you can do gun maintenance at the range. This MTM Range Box is also offered through Amazon.com for $39.20 with free shipping.

5. Graf’s — 10% Off All Forster Products

forster Graf graf's discount 10% sale Reloading dies presses
forster Graf graf's discount 10% sale Reloading dies presses

Forster makes GREAT products. Our staff own and use Forster presses, dies, case trimmers, primer tools, chamber/deburring tools, and more. And Forster has outstanding customer service. And did you know that Forster will custom-hone your full-length dies for a modest fee? Right how you can save 10% on ALL in-stock Forster products at Graf & Sons. But folks, don’t delay — this 10% Off Forster Deal expires June 12, 2019 at 11:59 pm CT.

6. Palmetto State Armory — Smith & Wesson 15-22 Rifle, $299.99

Palmetto Armory Smith Wesson 15-22 AR rimfire .22 LR rifle sale discount

Here’s a fun .22 LR rifle with the style and ergonomics of an AR15. Smith & Wesson’s M&P 15-22 Sport features a 10-inch M-LOK handguard, and nicely-designed Magpul MBUS® front and rear folding sights. The buttstock is a classic AR-style unit that easily adjusts for Length of Pull. The upper boasts an integrated Picatinny-style rail for optics and other accessories. NOTE: S&W 15-22 owners love this little rimfire — it has earned dozens of 5-star reviews from actual buyers.

7. Graf’s — Buy 8-lb keg of select powder, get FREE 1-pounder

hodgdon IMR powder sale

Save on powder — right now at Graf & Sons, if you buy an 8-lb keg of select Hodgdon or IMR powders, you get a FREE one-pound or 14-ounce container of the same powder. This deal works with fourteen (14) popular Hodgdon and IMR powders for rifles, pistols, and shotguns. So if you’re running low and need to stock up on your favorite powders, here’s your chance to cash in on some savings. That free one-pounder can be worth up to $32.00. CLICK HERE for POWDER DEAL.

8. SIG Sauer — Buy P226 Pistol, Get FREE X-5 Air Pistol

Sig Sauer father's day promotion free air pistol

Here’s a cool deal for Father’s Day. Buy any new SIG Sauer P226 pistol now through June 30, 2019 and get a SIG STORE Rewards Coupon for a free X-FIVE Air Pistol. This 2 for 1 Father’s Day Promotion offer runs from 06/01/2019 until 06/30/2019. To claim your free X-FIVE visit Sigsauer.rebateaccess.com, follow the instructions to complete the form, and upload or mail your receipt. Once validated you will receive a promo code that can be redeemed at Sigsauer.com for an X-FIVE Air Pistol.

9. Amazon – Proster Wind Meter, $16.99

Proster Wind Meter

Wish you had a modern impeller-style wind meter but only shoot a couple matches a year and can’t justify spending $150 (or more) on one? This Proster wind meter has a very impressive 4.5 star overall rating (with hundreds of reviews), so buy with confidence. Now on sale for just $16.99, this is a very useful tool for a bargain basement price. Get this affordable Wind Meter to ensure you have reliable wind readings for ballistics calculations. And unlike a costly Kestrel, with this low-priced wind meter, you won’t feel too bad if it gets lost or misplaced some time.

Permalink Optics, Reloading, Tactical No Comments »
June 2nd, 2019

.284 Shehane — Winning Wildcat for F-Open Competition

7mm .285 shehane improved f-class f-open caliber cartridge chambering

High-BC 7mm Bullets7mm (.284) remains the caliber to beat in F-Class Open Division (though some shooters have had success with .30-Cal short magnums.) With a standard .284 Winchester, or better yet, a .284 Improved, you can drive the high-BC Berger 180gr and 184gr bullets to competitive velocities.

The straight .284 Win is an excellent cartridge, quite capable of winning F-class matches. However, in most barrels, it can’t push the 180s at 2900-2950 fps velocity levels*. A lot of barrels will top out at about 2850 fps. That’s where the .284 Shehane comes into play.

The .284 Shehane is a slightly modified wildcat that retains the same 35° shoulder as the parent case. However, by blowing the sidewalls out 0.010″, the .284 Shehane picks up about 3.3 grains of extra case capacity. That enhancement makes a BIG difference. The extra boiler room is enough to drive the 180s at 2900-2950 fps with H4831sc. With N560 or Reloder 17 you can go even faster.

Norm Harrold Won 2018 F-Class Open Division Nationals with .284 Shehane Rifle
F-Class Open F-Open Norm Norman Harrold Champion Championship 2018 Raton NM New Mexico 284 Shehane Berger Bullets

Norm Harrold (above) won the 2018 USA F-Class Nationals shooting a .284 Shehane. Norm’s F-Open rig features a McMillan Kestros ZR stock and Bartlein barrel chambered for the .284 Shehane, which has a bit more case capacity than a standard .284 Winchester. Norm loaded Berger 184gr 7mm bullets in Lapua brass. Norm revealed his load in an Erik Cortina YouTube Video.

F-Class shooter Erik Cortina notes that the .284 Shehane has a velocity edge over the straight .284 Win because it holds more powder: “The Shehane has more capacity than the .284 Winchester. Ryan is using 54.0 grains simply as a fire-forming load. Typical load for a Shehane is around 57.0 grains of Hodgdon H4831 SC.” By blowing the sidewalls out 0.010″, the .284 Shehane picks up about 3.3 grains of extra case capacity. That enhancement makes a BIG difference. The extra boiler room is enough to drive the 180s at 2900-2950 fps with H4831sc, with long barrels.

Forum member Jim Hardy has shot the .284 with great success. He tells us: “In my humble opinion, the .284 Shehane is the best balanced long-range round there is — bar none. Here is why:

You have to shoot a 30 Cal Magnum with a 240gr bullet to equal the performance of most 7mm chamberings with the 180 Berger VLD. With the .284 Shehane, you have a .308 bolt face, medium action, and Lapua brass. You use less powder than the 7 mags, and have great accuracy and ballistics even while fire-forming. The .284 Shehane shoots inside the 6.5 AND the straight .284, the .300 WSM, and the .300 Win Mag with less recoil. What is not to love about the 284 Shehane? It is a no-brainer for long range — F-Class or Prone or 1000-yard Benchrest.”

Scotland’s Grant Taylor. who used the .284 Shehane to finish third at the 2009 F-Class Worlds in England says the .284 Shehane is “very accurate with superb vertical spreads at 1000 yards. [This] caliber… has awesome accuracy. I’m getting 2930-2950 fps with spreads in the 3-5 fps range. I use Hodgdon H4831sc powder, CCI BR2 primers, and pointed 180gr Bergers.”

.284 Shehane Shines in 1K Benchrest Competition Too
The .284 Shehane has won in Benchrest as well as F-Class competition. In 2013, Henry Pasquet won the IBS 1000-Yard Nationals shooting a .284 Shehane. Henry’s Championship-winning rig is shown below. Note the 5″-wide fore-end which is not legal for F-Class. Henry also runs a combo tuner/muzzle-brake.

.284 Shehane Henry Pasquet ibs 1000 yard championship

.284 Shehane Henry Pasquet ibs 1000 yard championship

Amazing Accuracy When Fire-Forming .284 Shehane

7mm .285 shehane improved f-class f-open caliber cartridge chambering

If you look at that 5-round group you might think it was shot with a 6 PPC or maybe a 6mmBR. But no, this was done with heavy 180gr Berger Hybrid bullets and the .284 Shehane. In fact, this impressive sub-quarter MOA group was shot while fire-forming with a very well-worn barrel! Gun builder Ryan Pierce of Piercision Rifles explains: “Here’s a 5-shot 0.191″ group at 100 yards with my .284 Shehane fireforming loads. This barrel has 2200 rounds through it. It had 2000 as a straight .284 Win and then I set it back to .284 Shehane to form brass with. [The load was] 180 Hybrids with 54.0 grains of H4831 SC.”


*Some exceptional barrels chambered in straight .284 Win can reach 2900 fps with the 180s. Ryan Pierce has a 32″ Brux barrel that is delivering 2900 fps with the straight .284. However, Ryan acknowledges that his velocities are not typical: “A lot of .284 Win barrels top out at around 2850 fps with the 180s”.

Permalink - Articles, Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Competition No Comments »