July 28th, 2019

What’s Wrong with This Picture — Look Carefully

Bisley Range Deer England Centre UK Wildlife F-Class
Click image to zoom full-screen.

What’s wrong (or right?) with this picture? Does the “F” in F-class refer to “Fauna”? Look carefully at this Bisley Range photo taken by Australian R. Hurley while looking downrange through his March 8-80X scope. The photo was taken in 2015 at the Bisley National Shooting Centre in the UK.

The Story Behind the Photo
British shooter T. Stewart reports: “I was there when this photos was taken. All I can say was that Mr. Hurley was firmly reminded that should said deer accidentally jump in front of his bullet … he would spend five years ‘At Her Majesty’s Pleasure’.”

“That morning we had five deer moving across the targets, literally blocking the V-Bull. Since we were on the 900-yard Firing Point, and elevated for such, obviously the bullet would pass well above them. But they do NOT move or flinch at the noise or passing bullets since they are not hunted on the Bisley Ranges. Earlier this year we saw a herd of 20 or so deer grazing slowly across the Range.”

More Fauna Findings…
Apparently Bisley is not the only place were “the deer and the antelope play”. In Canada, on the Connaught Ranges near Ottawa, Ontario, shooters often encounter a variety of wildlife. William McDonald from Ontario says: “Animals are a common sight on the Range. Along with deer we see geese, turkeys, and coyotes on a daily basis.”

Likewise, E. Goodacre from Queensland, Australia often sees ‘Roos on his home range: “I shoot at Ripley, Australia, and shooting is regularly interrupted by kangaroos. Our last silhouette match was delayed by an hour while 30 ‘Roos dawdled across — silly buggers!”

R. Hurley wasn’t the first fellow to view deer through his F-Class rifle’s scope. After seeing Hurley’s photo from Bisley, B. Weeks posted this image, saying: “Been there, done that!”

Bisley Range Deer England Centre UK Wildlife F-Class

Permalink Competition, News, Optics, Shooting Skills 3 Comments »
November 11th, 2016

English Shooter Sets New Great Britain F-Class Record

UK European F-Class F-Open Championships Bisley Range England

Report by Des Parr
With every new season, standards in the F-Class game are climbing ever higher. Shooter are improving their skills set while equipment and loading techniques are improving (thanks in part to websites such as this). Evidence of the level of improvement in F-Class shooting comes from the UK, where a talented shooter drilled a new GBFCA record score. One of our rising stars on this side of the pond is F-Open shooter Paul Hill. He hails from England’s wide-open flat lands where the wind blows strongly in from the North Sea and where a shooter must soon learn to read the wind.

At the European Championships held in September at the Bisley ranges, Paul set a new record score at 900 yards — a 100-17V! That’s 17 shots placed in a five-inch circle the size of a CD (compact disc) at over half a mile. [NOTE: At Bisley, the maximum score is FIVE points, not ten points. So the maximum score for 20 shots is 100. Also what Americans call an “X” is called a “V” at Bisley.]

Record Set with Slower Pair Firing Method
Bear in mind the style of shooting here in Great Britain is pair-firing. Under this procedure, each of two competitors shoots alternately, taking turns from shot to shot. Each shooter has 45 seconds to get his shot off. Allowing for the target pullers to do their jobs, this means that each shot can take up to one minute. As Paul was pair firing, he had to concentrate for up to 40 minutes to get all 20 shots off! You can imagine how many times the wind changed course in those 40 minutes — pick-ups, let-offs, changes of angle and direction. Paul had to counter each change and still managed to keep 17 shots in that 5-inch circle!

UK European F-Class F-Open Championships Bisley Range England

Paul Hill Sets Record with His First-Ever DIY-Chambered Barrel
What makes this new GBFCA record all the more significant is that Paul did it by barreling his own rifle — and for the first time! By simply taking great care and attention he has chambered and fitted a barrel himself to the very highest standards. Paul chambered the Krieger 1:9″-twist barrel for the .284 Winchester cartridge. His action was a Barnard. The stock is by Joe West.

Record Shot with Lapua 180gr Scenars and Russian Primers
We should note that Paul Hill is a very keen fan of Lapua’s 180gr Scenar-L bullet. It has to be said that this bullet doesn’t have the highest BC, yet whatever it lacks in that department it more than makes up for by being remarkably consistent — and consistency counts for a lot. Paul is also a fan of the Russian KVB-7 primers. His achievement is proof that Lapua Scenars and KVB-7 primers are every bit as good as the premium-priced alternatives. The powder was Vihtavuori N160. [Editor: For its 180gr Scenar-L, Lapua lists a 0.661 G1 BC, and a 0.332 G7 BC. Those numbers may not top the charts, but they are still very impressive.]

Records are made to be broken, but we think it will be quite a while before Paul’s 200-17X is surpassed in European competition. If you feel up to that challenge, consider competing in next year’s European Championships in late September 2017.

Permalink News 6 Comments »
November 19th, 2015

What’s Wrong with This Picture?

Bisley Range Deer England Centre UK Wildlife F-Class
Click image to zoom full-screen.

What’s wrong (or right?) with this picture? Does the “F” in F-class stand for “Fauna”? Look carefully at this Bisley Range photo taken by Australian R. Hurley while looking downrange through his March 8-80X scope. The photo was taken earlier this year at the Bisley National Shooting Centre in the UK.

The Story Behind the Photo
British shooter T. Stewart reports: “I was there when this photos was taken. All I can say was that Mr. Hurley was firmly reminded that should said deer accidentally jump in front of his bullet … he would spend five years “At Her Majesty’s Pleasure”. That morning we had five deer moving across the targets, literally blocking the V-Bull. Since we were on the 900-yard Firing Point, and elevated for such, obviously the bullet would pass well above them. But they do NOT move or flinch at the noise or passing bullets since they are not hunted on the Bisley Ranges. Earlier this year we saw a herd of 20 or so deer grazing slowly across the Range.”

More Fauna Findings…
Apparently Bisley is not the only place were “the deer and the antelope play”. In Canada, on the Connaught Ranges near Ottawa, Ontario, shooters often encounter a variety of wildlife. William McDonald from Ontario says: “Animals are a common sight on the Range. Along with deer we see geese, turkeys, and coyotes on a daily basis.”

Likewise, E. Goodacre from Queensland, Australia often sees ‘Roos on his home range: “I shoot at Ripley, Australia, and shooting is regularly interrupted by kangaroos. Our last silhouette match was delayed by an hour while 30 ‘Roos dawdled across — silly buggers!”

R. Hurley wasn’t the first fellow to view deer through his F-Class rifle’s scope. After seeing Hurley’s photo from Bisley, B. Weeks posted this image, saying: “Been there, done that!”

Bisley Range Deer England Centre UK Wildlife F-Class

Permalink Competition, Hunting/Varminting 15 Comments »
September 16th, 2014

Report: European F-Class Championships at Bisley, England

Report by Vince Bottomley
For this year, the European F-Class Championships moved from its traditional November date to mid-September. England can be smitten with some dreadful weather in November and previous Championships have suffered everything from rain and mist, to sub-zero temperatures. It proved to be a wise decision and competitors enjoyed balmy, sunny weather for the whole week, with matches on September 12-14, 2014. The event was well attended with 206 individual entries and over 20 teams. With competitors from a dozen nations, this is one of the biggest F-Class events in the world.

Congratulations to Scotland’s Des Parr, the new F-Open champion (on V-count over James Finn), and congrats to Giulio Arrigucci of Italy, who won the F-TR title. Both Parr and Finn dropped only five points over the entire two-day individual competition. For more information (and full listing of match results) visit www.GBFclass.co.uk.

European GB Bisley F-class Championships great britain

F-Open Individual Results F-TR Individual Results
1. Des Parr (Scotland): 470.48V (possible 475)
2. James Finn (Ireland): 470.41V
3. Marco Been (Holland): 467.49V
4. Mik Maksimovic (GB): 465.38V
5. Daniel McKenna (Ireland): 464.40V
6. Dave Lloyd (GB): 463.36V
1. Giulio Arrigucci (Italy): 455.30V
2. Francisco Franco Mosquera (Spain): 454.30V
3. Sergii Gorbon (Ukraine): 452.36V
4. Tom Bond (GB): 449.29V
5. Valentin Pomomarenko (Ukraine): 449.29V
6. Russell Simmonds (GB): 449.29V

Over the past few years, numbers have increased steadily and this year, over 200 shooters assembled on Bisley’s famous Stickledown range on the Friday morning for the first of two days of individual competition, followed by Team Matches on the Sunday. The four days preceding the Championships were available for practice and informal competitions.

With near-perfect conditions for the first 800-yard stage, some excellent scores were recorded. Scotsman Paul Crosbie’s F-TR score of 75.12V not only took the stage win but also set a new GB record and equaled the top F-Open score (by Italian Gian Antonio Quaglino). Maximums were also recorded at 900 yards by both classes but at 1000 yards, Scotsman Des Parr’s 74.11V was a clear winner, with Italy’s Andrea Ceron’s recording a 72.6V in F-TR.

The Famous Stickledown Range at Bisley
European GB Bisley F-class Championships great britain

At the end of Day One, Des Parr was leading Open Class by a single point and Spain’s Francisco Franco Mosquera had a two point lead in F-TR. The following day, competitors tackled the same course of fire to decide the title of European Champion.

Although a little overcast for the start of Day Two, the sun soon broke through and the fact that the top 36 Open shooters didn’t drop a single point at 800 yards gives an indication of conditions. Even the top 15 F-TR shooters ‘cleaned’ the target but, some relays experienced less favorable conditions.

European GB Bisley F-class Championships great britainAt 900 yards, again the top nine Open competitors shot ‘possibles’ but, in F-TR, Ukraine’s Sergii Gorban’s excellent 74.9V was the top score. For the final 1000-yard shoot – a 2 and 20 this time, Ireland’s Kevin Clancy’s 95.5V was a great F-TR score but Dave Lloyd’s winning Open score of 99.6V was absolutely stunning.

In the end, Scotland’s Des Parr and Ireland’s James Finn tied on points with 470 of 475 possible, but Parr took the 2014 European F-Open title based on V-bull count: 48 for Parr vs. 41 for Finn. Italy’s Giulio Arrigucci won the F-TR Championship by one point over Francisco Franco Mosquera.

European GB Bisley F-class Championships great britain

We were delighted to have American shooter Francis ‘Biff’ Conlon join us – shooting a borrowed rifle in F-TR (second from left in the above photograph). Biff shot as part of one of the F-TR Teams in the pre-Championship competitions and picked up a gold medal – note the unusual trophy! Maybe a few more Americans might think it worthwhile making the trip to shoot in next year’s Europeans.

TEAM Matches
The Championships end with the Teams Matches on the Sunday. These matches are for eight-man teams so, not all countries are able to field a team but four Open Teams and five FTR teams were fielded. Ranges are 900 and 1000 yards with 15 shots at each distance. Wind coaches are permitted.

F-Open Team Results F-TR Team Results
1. Great Britain – 1161.120V
2. Italy – 1145.74V
3. Germany (BDMP) – 1129.91V
1. Germany (BDMP) – 1106.57V
2. Italy – 1104.68V
3. Ukraine – 1101.69V

Report from David Lloyd, current Great Britain F-Open Team Captain
I’ve just got back from the F-Class European Championships. The minor 4-man teams match was held last Thursday afternoon and was shot over 1000 yards with 2 + 20 to count. I was part of the victorious Team March (388.26V). In second place was the Midland Precision Guns Team with 383.26V.

The conditions were good and the level of competition was very high. Team March was captained by Gary Costello the UK and European importer of March scopes. The coach was Tony Marsh and he did a superb job of coaching the team to victory (he coached me to a score of 100-6Vs). The shooters were: Gary Costello, David Lloyd, Ian Boxall, Darren Stewart. Peter Walker was reserve shooter and register keeper.

Permalink Competition 4 Comments »
November 8th, 2013

Across the Atlantic: European F-Class Championships at Bisley

F-Class European Championship Bisley Rutland England Great Britain Joe Melia Paul Eggerman

Credit Des Parr for providing match details found in this report.
The 2013 European F-Class Championships are now history. Congratulations to new F-Open Euro Champion Joe Melia of Ireland, and new F-TR Euro Champion Paul Eggerman of Germany. Held at the Bisley Ranges in England, the European Championships drew top shooters from all over the Continent, plus the U.K. and Ireland. Following the individual competitions, national teams competed, and Great Britain emerged the big winner. British teams won gold in F-Open, F-TR, and the Rutland Cup. Hail Britannia!

On the GB F-Class Association website, Des Parr authored a great day-by-day account of the Euro Championships. Des writes: “The 2013 European Championships had a little of everything to keep everyone happy — some very light winds to please the trigger pullers, some very strong winds to please the wind-readers and only a little rain to please everyone! Friday was notable for having remarkably calm and steady wind. This enabled everyone to really see what their rifles were capable of in near to ideal conditions. The result was predictable; some very high scores.”

Individual Championships
In F-Open division, senior Irishman Joe Melia shot 457.39 to capture the title. Des Parr notes: “Joe got a rousing cheer from all his fellow competitors, indicative of his good standing. In second, it was another medal for Ireland, this time the fiercely competitive Anthony Dunne used all his experience to rack up 453.38. In third place was the new GB Captain from Wales, David Lloyd with 452.33.”

In F-TR, the Germany’s Paul Eggemann shot a superb score of 447.35 to win the individual title, ten points ahead of his nearest rival. Ukraine’s Sergei Baranov took second with 437.22, while his countryman Sergei Gorban finished third with 436.26.

Links to Full European F-Class Championship Results
F-Open Championships Results | F-TR Championships Results | Team Championships Results

TEAM COMPETITION
8-Man Event — Top place went to Team GB with 1084.58. Second place was taken by Italy with 1035.46 and in third was BDMP Germany with 1021.32. In F-TR, first place went to Team GB with 1007.32, with Team Italy second (987.31), and Ukraine third (978.26).

4-Man Rutland — There were ten, 4-man teams in the Rutland Competition. In F-Open, Winning Team GB was steered to victory by captain Peter Hobson with a super 524.19. France Open 1 took second with 522.17, while the Europe Open team was third with 497.22.

Irish Teams won silver and bronze in the 4-man Rutland Match at the European Championships.
F-Class European Championship Bisley Rutland Ireland


In related news, Forum member Gary Costello from the U.K. won the GB/Euro National League title for 2013 with a total of 71 points. This multi-match title is based on the best of four (4) League Championship Competitions throughout the year. Gary explains: “We have eight shoots in total, this championship is open to GB F-Class Association members and includes shooters from France, Germany, Ireland, Netherlands, Spain, Ukraine and several other countries. Most of these countries have maximum 300 yards to shoot so the UK is the closest place to compete in long-range competitions. That’s a bit amazing considering the size of the UK to Germany for example.”

F-Class European Championship Leagu Bisley Gary Costello 300 WSM

Gary used a 300 WSM built by Gunsmith Peter Walker, with a Nesika L action, Benchmark barrel, and a March 8-80x56mm scope. Gary told us that it took some time to master the 300 WSM, which has more recoil than a .284 Win, but in the end, Gary’s choice of caliber helped carry him to victory over a long season of hard-fought competition. Finishing second in League standings was Mark Daish with 70 points, while Des Parr took third place with 64 points. (Point totals based on best four matches.) Complete 2013 GB F-Class League Results are available on the GB F-Class Association website.

Photos courtesy F-TR Ireland and Gary Costello.
Permalink Competition, News 7 Comments »
November 17th, 2012

Custom Gun Stocks from Ireland’s Enda Walsh

ireland shieldThere are few master craftsmen who can create a truly “bespoke” wood stock customized for the owner. Ireland’s Enda Walsh is one such talent. Through Gun Stocks Ireland, Enda creates high-quality stocks for hunters, prone shooters, and F-class competitors. Enda first started building stocks in 2001 for himself and friends, and grew the business over a decade. Enda explains: “Demand gradually increased until in 2009 the decision was taken to make it my full-time occupation. In 2010 I obtained my RFD licence and haven’t looked back. My goal with Guns Stocks Ireland is to manufacture precise custom rifle stocks to the highest standard, tailored in every detail to best serve the shooters requirements.” Enda adds: “I started Gun Stocks Ireland to produce custom, individually-tailored gunstocks. I build from hand casts so your gun is genuinely an extension of your arm.”


Walsh offers many stock designs, including a wide variety of thumb-hole and vertical grip stocks. Many of these feature hand-relieved grip areas customized for each guns’ owner. The hand-grip section literally fits the shooter “like a glove”. How does Enda create an ergonomically perfect grip for each customer? He actually makes a casting of the customer’s hand: “I send customers a hand cast kit so the shooter can make a plaster cast with his hand in shooting position. Done correctly there will be no tension in the shooter’s hand no matter how tight a hold is employed.” Enda’s stocks aren’t cheap, but they are a good value considering the amount of expert labor involved. Typical price for a fitted, bedded, and finished fully-adjustable F-Class stock is 1500 Euros.


Enda’s stocks, as you can see from the photos, are labors of love. Each stock may require up to 80 hours of work from start to finish. That includes fitting of special features, such as adjustable buttplate, adjustable cheek-piece, and a unique bag-rider that adjusts up and down for elevation control and rifle balance. We think the adjustable bag-rider is a great idea that American stock-makers should emulate.

Vertically Adjustable Bag Rider Permits Easy Elevation Adjustment
“For F-Open shooters the benefit of the [adjustable] bag runner is it allows precise elevation adjustments shot to shot without having to reach forward to adjust the front rest, taking the shooter out of his natural position. For ‘bag squeezers’ it eliminates the variable settlement during a shot causing vertical variances. The adjustable bag runner allows elevation changes to be dialed in easily and precisely with one hand.” — Enda Walsh


This is a .308 Win Savage in a fully adjustable F-TR stock. This rifle always performs well at the LRRAI shoots in Castlemaine Rifle & Pistol Range.

Enda Walsh Shoots What He Builds
Enda Walsh is a very talented shooter as well as a master stock-maker. He recently won a Silver Medal at 1000 yards at the 2012 European F-Class Championships at Bisley. He also shared a team Gold Medal at 1000 yards, shooting with an Irish F-TR team, and making wind calls as well.

Enda says: “I was very happy to take a silver at Bisley this year. This was my first trip to Bisley and first Euro Championships. The experience gave me some ideas on how to improve things for next year….”

Gun Stocks Ireland
Contact: Enda Walsh
Currabaha – Dungarvan
County Waterford
Ireland

E-mail: info [at] gunstocksireland.com
Phone in Ireland: 011-353-[0]87-661-1993

Permalink Gunsmithing, New Product 3 Comments »
November 8th, 2012

Seb Does Diggle… and Bisley and London

Our friend Sebastian Lambang, creator of the SEB Coaxial rests and the new SEB Joystick Bipod, recently visited Great Britain to participate in the European F-Class Championships. While in the UK, Seb visited the famous (infamous?) Diggle Range, as well as London Towne. Seb was hosted by Brit shooters Brian Fox and our buddy Vince Bottomley (who writes for the TargetShooter Magazine).

Shooting in the UK
Report by Sebastian Lambang
After flying from Surabaya to Manchester airport, Brian Fox picked up my wife Lily and me on Oct. 26 morning. We then went straight to Diggle Hotel. Saturday I shot the 800-yard match at Diggle Range and Sunday I shot the 300m ‘Tactical’ Match.

Monday to Wednesday morning Lily and I did sight-seeing in London. Then we went to Bisley by train. I got a little practice time on Thursday then shot the individual match on Friday and Saturday. The team match was on Sunday but I didn’t shoot it since a friend took us to his house.

Bisley Was Cold and Conditions Were Hard to Read
I think I didn’t do very well in the Europeans. Probably because this was my first-ever F-class match, and the temps were too low for me. I was told also that Bisley is hard to shoot, the wind flags pointing ‘everywhere’, and I wasn’t sure what I should I watch to judge the conditions. I can’t trust the wind-flags, I couldn’t see mirage most of the time to help to determine the hold off. However I really liked the Championship event and enjoyed the shooting. Congrats to Lee Tomlinson (F-Open Winner, 459.30), Tim Stewart (F-TR Winner, 439.23) and Great Britain’s victorious F-Open and F-TR teams.

CLICK HERE for Complete European F-Class Championship Results

Vince Bottomley supplied a rifle for me to use at the Championships. Vince is a great guy indeed, he helped me with the rifle, the loads etc., and most of all he spent three full days with me while I was shooting the match. I can’t thank him enough.

Testing the New SEB Joystick Bipod

AccurateShooter: How did the new Joystick Bipod Work?

Seb: Unfortunately I didn’t have much time to try the bipod myself. But Thursday afternoon several Spanish shooters tried the bipod on their gun and they said that the bipod works fine and their shots went into the spot they want. I tried a few rounds with their gun but the impacts were not as expected … probably because I shot their F-TR .308 gun free recoil. [Editor: Even with ski-type bipod feet, you will usually benefit by having a pretty firm grip on the gun — not a death hold — but contact with the gun at multiple points.]

AccurateShooter: When will the bipod go on sale? Is the design finalized?

SEB joystick bipodSeb: I still need to perfect the legs of the bipod, I think. I will probably make two models, one with compactness in mind and one other with the lightest legs possible. The MAX rest is in production currently, and then I’ll make another 200 NEO rests for the people on the waiting list. After that we could probably start bipod production. I do hope that the bipod can be ready for sale sometime in mid-2013. The first batch would be 100 units. If my prediction is correct, all 100 units will be sold or spoken for.

AccurateShooter: How much will the production version of the Joystick Bipod cost?

Seb: Still not sure, but it should be around $350-$400 in the USA. The most expensive part is the coaxial unit. According to Brian Fox, the bipod attracted a lot of attention/interest during the match and if I had a dozen units with me, we might have sold them all at the match.

Great Visit to the UK
I really enjoyed my visit to the UK, especially visiting with Brian Fox (he is a great guy and genuine indeed!) and meeting fellow shooters from other European countries. I learned a bit from the F-class shoot and I think the bug has bitten me. It’s also nice to see a sea of SEB rests at the Bisley range in the F-Open Class.

I send my thanks to all the people I met during my visit. It is great to make new friends, and I’m happy to be a part of this great group of shooters.

Permalink Competition, New Product 2 Comments »
November 1st, 2012

F-Classers Get Ready for European Championships at Bisley, UK

The European F-Class Championship (and British Championship) kick off this weekend (November 2-4) at the legendary Bisley Range in the UK. With 185 entrants, this event should be the largest F-Class competition of the year outside of North America. The Championship matches commence tomorrow, but competitors have already arrived at Bisley and they are getting their F-Class rifles warmed up during practice sessions. Here are some photos from the F-TR Ireland Facebook Page.

F-TR Ireland reports: “Here are photos taken during today’s Practice Day at Bisley on Stickledown Range at 800, 900, and 1000 yards. [We had] a great day’s shooting and excellent camaraderie amongst the team-mates.” The bottom photo shows the 900-yard Firing Line during Practice Day.

Bisley Stickledown Range
Bisley Stickledown Range

Bisley Stickledown Range

Explore Bisley with Google Satellite Image Map

View Larger Map

Permalink Competition, News 1 Comment »
December 26th, 2011

Bottomley Builds a Winner — 2011 Euro F-TR Champ Gun

Ace UK shooter Vince Bottomley decided he wanted to build a new F-TR rifle for the 2011 season. Vince selected all the best components: Stolle Action, Bartlein Barrel, Precision Rifle & Tool Stock. The build came together superbly, producing a .308 Win rifle that shoots bugholes at 100 yards, and holds sub-half-MOA (or better) to 1000. After building the rifle, Vince decided to shoot Open Class at the 2011 European Championship. So, he graciously loaned his purple F-TR rig to his friend, Stuart Anselm. The rest, as they say, “is history”. Despite having just one day’s practice with the gun, Stuart drove Vince’s rifle to victory, winning the 2011 European F-Class Championship (F-TR division) by a sizable margin.

READ Full Story about European Championship-Winning F-TR Rifle.

Vince Bottomley F-TR European championship rifle .308 Win bipod Leupold

Superb Accuracy with VV N150 and Berger 185gr Bullets
This 2011 Euro Championship-winning F-TR rifle is the star of our latest Gun of the Week Feature Story. In that article, Vince explains how he modified the long PR&T stock to make weight, and how he developed an accurate load with Vihtavuori N150 and Berger 185gr Target Long-Range Bullets. Vince notes that many UK F-Class shooters are moving back to single-base powders, after trying out double-base powders such as VV N550 and Reloder 17. What’s the reason? Barrel life. Vince feels that the single-base powders can give somewhat better barrel life, even if you lose a little velocity.

Bottomley F-TR .308 Win

New F-TR Champion Reviews Bottomley’s Stolle-Action Rifle
Stuart Anselm tells us: “I only shot the rifle a couple of days before the Europeans — two sighters and then five rounds at 800 yards which went into a 3.75-inch group. That gave me a lot of confidence in the rifle. The bi-pod is very light and looked a bit flimsy but it’s well-engineered, so it worked well. That long Precision Rifle & Tool stock is definitely the way to go and helps the rifle to track nicely under recoil. Of course, the Stolle action was perfect with the right-bolt, left-port set-up and the 10-60X March is just about the ultimate F-Class scope.”

Winning Performance: Scoring 452 points out of a possible 475, Stuart won the F-TR Euro Championship convincingly, finishing 10 points ahead of F-TR runner-up Adam Bagnall (also from Great Britain). Stuart also had the highest V-Bull count with 33.

Stuart Anselm F-TR European championship rifle .308 Win target accuracy

Permalink Competition, Gunsmithing 2 Comments »
December 19th, 2010

High-Tech Carbon-Fiber Bipod for F-TR Competition

Two Oregonians, Joe Huddleston and John Weil, have developed one of the most sophisticated bipods you can buy. The new Center Shot carbon-fiber bipod is ultra-light, weighing just 19 ounces (0.55 kg). John Weil used a prototype version at the 2009 F-Class world championships in Bisley, England. John was a member of the USA Team which won the F-TR Team Championship.

Center shot bipod

center shot bipod

The Center Shot bipod offers a very wide “wheelbase” for stability. The bipod’s long feet, shaped like helicopter skids, help the rifle recoil straight back, rather than hop or twist. The bipod is designed to attach securely via a standard accessory rail on the bottom of the rifle’s forearm. The bipod can easily be adjusted for height and cant (tilt angle), allowing the bipod to adjust to uneven terrain. The height adjustment also allows shooters to easily adapt the bipod to their rear bag height and shooting style.

Center shot bipod

Center shot bipod

The Center Shot Bipod comes in two versions. The basic model costs $450.00, while for $465, you can get one with the shooter’s national colors on the top rod assembly (see photo below). For more information, email joe [at] censhot.com or john weil at jhw1 [at] ix.netcom.net. You can also call (503) 622-3815, or write: Center Shot Engineering, 26810 E. Elk Park Rd., Welches, OR 97067.

center shot bipod

Centershot Bipod Specifications
Weight: 19 ounces
Full height to rail: 9.25 inches | Foot Print at 9.25 inches: 16.3 inches
Lowest height to rail: 4.5 inches | Foot Print at 4.5 inches: 20.5 inches
Materials: Aluminum, carbon fiber, stainless hardware
Continuous adjustment from lowest to highest setting.

Permalink New Product, News 7 Comments »
September 30th, 2009

World Long-Range Muzzle-Loading Championships at Butner

The 7th Long-Range World Muzzle-Loading Championships were held September 24-27 at Camp Butner, North Carolina. Shooters from seven nations competed at distances between 300 and 1,000 yards. Competitors employed percussion target rifles of 19th-century design (though many were modern reproductions). Typically between .40 and .50 caliber and weighing around fifteen pounds, these rifles represent the apogee of mid-1800s firearm technology.

The World Muzzle-Loading Championships, held since 1972, is the highest level of target shooting with muzzle-loading arms. Guns used range from Japanese matchlock muskets, through the flintlocks of the American Revolution, to the percussion arms of the Civil War era. Individual competitions are held in eight rifle, four pistol, and two shotgun events. Original antique arms and modern replicas compete in separate classes.

CLICK HERE for complete match results. American competitors excelled in the original-arms division of the matches. Firing 150-year-old antiques, Karl Kuehn took gold in the 1,000-yard match and silver in the 900-yard match, carrying him to triumph in the overall long-range aggregate and earning a bronze medal in the Grand Aggregate. Nor was Kuehn the only medalist. Al Roberts won the original division of the 600-yard match, while Mon Yee took bronze at 300 and 500 yards — scores which earned him bronze in the mid-range Agg as well.

The Long-Range Muzzle-Loading World Championship was held under the auspices of the Muzzle-Loading Associations International Committee (MLAIC), the world governing body for black powder competition. The 8th World Long-Range Championship will be held in 2011, at the famed Bisley range in Great Britain. Shown below is a Pedersoli Gibbs target rifle at Bisley during the UK National Championships. Repro rifles like this won 10 gold medals at the 2007 World LR muzzle loading championships in South Africa.

YouTube Preview Image

More information on long-range muzzle-loading is available at www.lrml.org and www.usimlt.org (USA Team website).

Permalink Competition, Reloading 1 Comment »
August 22nd, 2009

Savage F-TR Team — World-Beaters on a Budget

Savage ArmsIt seems hard to believe you can compete and win at the highest levels of long-range shooting competition with a stock factory rifle, but that’s exactly what Team USA did at the recent F-Class World Championships in Bisley, England. The U.S. F-TR team, which included Team Savage shooters, dominated the F-T/R division, winning a total of 14 medals at the World Championships (and various side matches associated with the event).

Savage Arms F-TR

Three Oregonians, Darrell Buell, Stan Pate, and John Weil, together with Forum member Monte Milanuk of Wenatchee (WA), crossed the Atlantic to represent the USA and Savage Arms. The competition is held once every four years and features some of the best talent and most expensive custom rifles from around the globe. The matches are held over several days, at distances of 800, 900 and 1,000 yards.

The Savage Shooters used the Model 12 F-T/R from Savage Arms, chambered in .308 Winchester. This exact model can be purchased from any Savage dealer for a suggested retail price of just $1,265. The results speak for themselves: Team Savage came home with seven gold medals, two silvers, and two bronze from the World Championships. The Team also earned two gold medals and a bronze at the associated side matches, including the Bog Oak Trophy Match held in Ireland.

NOTE: In addition to the four Team Savage Members, the full F-TR Team USA included a number of other shooters, using other rigs. The USA F/TR team that traveled to Bisley consisted of 11 shooters: Darrell Buell (Captain), Gary Rasmussen (Wind Coach), Brad Sauve, Dale Carpenter, John Weil, Jeff Rorer, Stan Pate, Mike Miller, Paul Phillips, Warren Dean, and Monte Milanuk. Gary Rasmussen coached F-TR Team USA and Kathy Buell was official record-keeper. Monte Milanuk explained: “While almost half the team was using a Savage-actioned rifle of some sort (Warren, Darrell, John, Stan & Monte), the rest were using four Barnards (Brad, Paul, Dale, and Mike), one Stolle Panda (Jeff), and a Wichita (Gary).”

All of the above participated in the FCWC as individuals, and worked together throughout the entire event (both team and individual stages).

The final firing team that represented the USA in the main F-Class Team World Championships, selected according to performance during certain ‘team’ event stages during the Imperial Meeting, consisted of: Darrell Buell (Captain), Gary Rasmussen (Wind Coach), John Weil (Shooter), Paul Phillips (Shooter), Monte Milanuk, (Shooter), Jeff Rorer (Shooter), Dale Carpenter (Reserve/ Plotter).

The remaining four shooters entered in the Rutland Cup, a match held concurrently with the FCWC, primarily for countries which cannot field a full 8-man team for F-Open. The USA F-Open and F/TR teams both used their ‘extra’ shooters in this event. In the Rutland Cup, the USA F/TR team consisted of Stan Pate (Captain/Shooter), Mike Miller (Coach/Shooter), Brad Sauve (Shooter), and Warren Dean (Shooter).

Savage Arms Team Savage F-TR

Team Savage poses with the Bog Oak Team Trophy. Team members are, from left: John Weil, Darrell Buell, Monte Milanuk and Stan Pate.

World Championship National Teams Match (F-TR)
Team USA 1st place… World Champions
Full USA F-TR Team Roster: Darrell Buell (Captain), Gary Rasmussen (Coach), Dale Carpenter, Monte Milanuk, Paul Phillips, Jeff Rorer, John Weil, Kathy Buell (register keeper).

Individual World Championships (F-T/R)
900 Yard Day 1 — Stan Pate 1st (gold medal)
800 Yard Day 2 — Monte Milanuk 1st (gold medal)
900 Yard Day 2 — John Weil 1st (gold medal)
1000 Yard Day 2 — Stan Pate 1st (gold medal)
800 Yard Aggregate Match — Monte Milanuk 1st (gold medal)
900 Yard Aggregate Match — John Weil 1st (gold medal)

Individual World Championships Grand Aggregate
S. Pate 3rd (bronze medal), D. Buell 9th, J. Weil 10th, M. Milanuk 13th

Other Major Matches
Duke of Cambridge (900-yard match) — John Weil 1st place (gold medal)
Ireland — Bog Oak Team Trophy
Darrell Buell, Stan Pate, Monte Milanuk, John Weil, Gold Medal

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July 31st, 2009

Hail Britannia! UK Shooters Dominate World F-Class Championships. USA F-TR Team Wins.

2009 F-Class Championships Bisley England, Farquharson TrophyThis year’s 2009 World F-Class Championship was held at the historic Bisley Range in England, and UK Shooters served their country proud, winning the prestigious F-Open Team Competition and dominating the individual matches in both F-Open and F-TR classes. Great Britain’s F-Open shooters proved their mastery of the challenging Bisley course, posting a 3436-230V score to top the second-place American Team by 59 points (Team USA score was 3377-234V). The South African Team, defending Champions, finished third with a 3337-188V score.

UK Shooters truely dominated the Individual F-Open Championship, capturing ALL of the top ten places, lead by Gary Costello (1st Place) with 458-44V, followed close behind by fellow Brit Des Parr with 456-36V. That’s nine Brits and a Scot in the Top Ten. In the Individual Competition, F-TR division, Britain finished one/two at the top of the podium, with Russell Simmons (437-23V) winning the Gold, and countryman George Barnard (432-23V) winning Silver. American Stan Pate took third with a 420-25V score.

2009 F-Class Championships

American F-Open Team Vice-Captain Shiraz Balolia, writing in his Bisley Blog, suggested that the windy conditions favored the 7mm caliber used by the home team Brits: “The individual World F-Class Championship is over. We essentially got overpowered by the 7mm guns. Bisley is not a range that you can win using 6.5mm guns, which is what the whole US Team is using. Of the top 10 positions, all but one were Brits with 7mm guns. The odd one was a Scot also with a 7mm gun.”

After the Team Match concluded, Shiraz wrote: “The British team won the World F-Class Open Championship. USA took second and South Africa third. The Brits beat us by 59 points and they were very surprised that we came that close to them. I believe that there were two main factors that worked very well for them. First and foremost was that they had full knowledge of their range and have been practicing on that range fairly regularly as a team for quite some time. Secondly, their 7mm guns were a good wind-bucking caliber that, when combined with good coaches (who have coached at that range for many years), gave them the results they were after. Someone made the comment to me that the Americans were improving by the day. Unfortunately, we ran out of days and it was game over. Our coaches did an outstanding job under very trying conditions. We beat the previous champs, South Africa, by 40 points.”

EDITOR’s NOTE: In the previous F-Open World Championships in South Africa, Team USA was defeated by the home team South Africans who were shooting 7mms. At Bisley in 2009, the same thing happened, with the Brits winning on their home turf, again using 7mms. Do we see the writing on the wall?

2009 F-Class Championships

CLICK HERE for Complete F-Class Championships Results.

CLICK HERE for 2009 F-Class World Championship Photo Archive.

2009 F-Class Championships

Americans Win F-TR Class
In the F-TR class the American Team powered to victory, haulting the British juggernaut. Under the leadership of Captain Darrel Buell, and coach Gary Rassmussen, shooters Brad Sauve, Dale Carpenter, Warren Dean, Monte Milanuk, Paul Phillips, Stan Pate, Jeff Rorer, and John Weil won the F-Class Restricted Teams Match with a 1581-76V score. The USA Rutland Cup Open Team of David Bailey, Mike Downey, David Gosnell, and Larry Taite, coached by Nancy Tompkins, also finished first, besting a strong Great Britain Red squad (second place), and Don Nagel’s third-place Connecticut Yankees.

2009 F-Class Championships

2009 F-Class Championships

All photos © 2009 by 762_AK, used by permission.

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July 23rd, 2009

News and Photos from F-Class World Championships in UK

F-Class competition at the Bisley Range in the UK is well under way. Currently, shooters from many countries are competing in the F-Class segments of the annual U.K. Imperial Meeting tournament. This will be followed by the actual F-Class World Championships, an event held every four years. The F-Class Worlds officially start with the individual championships next Monday and Tuesday (July 27-28) with the “main event”, the Team Championship, on Wednesday and Thursday (July 29-30). USA F-Class Open Team Vice-Captain Shiraz Bololia is providing regular written updates in his Bisley Blog. Here’s part of his latest report: “Today there was only one 300-yard match …. For me it was an early morning shoot at 8:00 am. The wind was dead. The weather was cool and overcast. Reminded me of the Plantation 300 yard range in Bellingham, WA where I shoot a lot of matches. First time since I got here the wind was less than 2 MPH. Less than ½ MOA change on my gun. It was a 15-shot match and I shot a perfect 75 with 15 Vs. As Coach Mead later said, even a blind Hog could have done that! Anyway that guarantees me a spot in the finals. Lot of US shooters in the St George’s finals.”

AK’s Great Bisley Photo Collections
In addition, British shooter “762AK” has posted fantastic collections of images from the World F-Class Championship, as well as the Imperial Meeting, which is being held concurrently. 762AK, a very talented photographer, is updating his Bisley photo collection daily. You should definitely check out these collections on Flickr. Click the links below to see hundreds of quality photos.

2009 F-Class Worlds | F-Class Worlds Slideshow

Imperial Meeting 2009 | Imperial Meeting Slideshow

2009 F-Class World Championships Bisley

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July 14th, 2009

Balolia Blogs Bisley — F-Class World Championship Reports

The U.S. F-Class Open Rifle team takes off for the UK on July 15th to participate in the 3rd World F-Class Championship, hosted in Bisley, England for 2009. This prestigious match is held every four years. The American Team won the inaugural event held in Canada, while the second World Championship was won by the South African squad on their home turf. To view profiles of U.S. Team members and learn more about the 2009 Championships, click the link below:

F-Class Championship

Daily Bisley Blogs from Shiraz Balolia
AccurateShooter F-Class ChampionshipThis year Shiraz Balolia, U.S. Team Vice Captain, plans to provide Daily Updates on the World Championships via a Web Blog. In his first Blog entry, Balolia writes: “On July 17th [there are] three matches, the Century 500 and 600 yards and the Admiral Hutton 900 yards. There are a number of different matches just about every single day until Saturday the 25th of July. Then, the World Championships start on Monday July 27, 2009.

The whole U.S. F-Class Open team will be shooting the proven 6.5-284 caliber. Several of the other teams are shooting the ballistically superior 7mm calibers, but we expect to outwit them with our calculated wind calls. The English have a ‘home court’ advantage and are utilizing their best wind readers who know the nuances of their ranges inside out.”

CLICK HERE for F-Class Blog by Shiraz Balolia

F-Class News for Twitter Fans
The U.S. F-Class team has also created a Twitter account, so you can follow events via this popular social networking site. CLICK HERE for the latest F-Class “Tweets”.

F-Class Championship

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