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October 12th, 2021

Nightforce Wedge Prism: +50 or +100 MOA Elevation for ELR

Nightforce Wedge Prism optic ELR Elevation device

In our most recent Sunday GunDay story featuring 2021 QUEEN of 2 Miles Lindsey Paul, we provided a full equipment list for Lindsey’s winning .375 CheyTac rifle. Readers noted that this big rig was equipped with a Nightforce Wedge Prism mounted forward of the riflescope. Lindsey used the Wedge Prism on her two most distant targets in the KO2M finals, which were placed at 3166 (1.8 miles) and 3520 yards (2 miles). Readers were curious about the Wedge Prism and wondered how to get one.

Nightforce Wedge Prism KO2M lindsey Paul 2021

Basically the device, which is offered in +50 MOA and +100 MOA versions, allows a major increase in elevation over what is available by cranking the elevation knob on the scope. Even with an angled rail offering +40 MOA elevation, few, if any, conventional scopes have enough elevation to put the reticle on targets two miles away. The Nightforce Wedge Prism is the answer. The Wedge Prism optically shifts the incoming image to the scope, effectively augmenting the scope’s vertical elevation travel.

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. However EuroOptic does currently have 50 MOA Demo models for $769.00.

Nightforce Wedge Prism optic ELR Elevation device

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October 10th, 2021

SunDay GunDay: Queen of 2 Miles Lindsey Paul — .375 CheyTac

King of 2 Miles Queen Lindsey Paul Raton ELR Alamo Precision Rifles

Hail to the Queen — the new Queen of 2 Miles, Lindsey Paul. This lady can shoot! The talented Texan beat a large field of top competitors, including many past KO2M Champions, all guys. We congratulate Lindsey on her outstanding performance, including 3 hits in 5 shots at the max distance, 2.0 miles (3520 yards). No other competitor had more than one hit at 3520 yards, and only four other finalists even had one hit at that distance. Lindsey was shooting an Alamo Precision Rifles .375 CheyTac rig loaded with Cutting Edge 400gr solid bullets in Peterson brass.

King of 2 Miles Queen Lindsey Paul Raton ELR Alamo Precision Rifles

Here Lindsey shoots her KO2M-winning .375 CheyTac rifle. You can see it packs a punch even with that big muzzle brake. One side-note — this talented lady won the title with a borrowed bipod! Lindsey told us: “Unfortunately, for this video, I don’t have the Accu-Tac bipod I used in the match because it was borrowed. I’ve got one coming from them, but it hasn’t arrived yet.”

Winning the 2021 King of 2 Miles — My Success Story

Report by Lindsey Paul, 2021 KO2M Champion
Winning the K02M title was big surprise for me. I didn’t go into this match with much confidence. My barrel has been acting strangely, for example, after the last match I cleaned it and once I fouled it back in the barrel seemed to have suddenly lost speed. It went from 2985 fps to around 2955 fps. Unfortunately this is my first ELR gun and I didn’t know how important it was to keep up with my round count. I have no idea when this barrel will die but I’d been thinking for the past couple of months that it would be any day now. So, I panicked, added some powder to get back in the middle of where I’ve determined my node to be, adjusted my seating depth a bit and got it shooting at a moderately good level.

Day One went very well. I was hoping to finish the match in the top third, that was my goal. I wasn’t really even nervous about shooting, I was more apprehensive about spotting for my team-mate, Robert Waggoner. I hit the Cold Bore target at 1572 yards and I had a great run from there on out. I was a little bummed that I didn’t get just one more hit but I was still in 4th place at day’s end.

King of 2 Miles Queen Lindsey Paul Raton ELR Alamo Precision Rifles

Day Two was nerve-racking. I had to spot for Robert and spotting has been something I have historically struggled with. I’ve spent a LOT of time on the spotter this year, working to improve my skills and become proficient at making quick, accurate calls on misses. Robert cleaned Target 1 and I thought we were going to have a great run. For some reason Target 2 really got the best of him but he finally had an impact and we moved to Target 3. This might be the thing I’m most proud of at the whole match. He missed, about six plates high, and I saw it and gave him a good call. It was then that he realized he hadn’t written down his dope for Target 3 and was using the dope for Target 4! He got right back on target and had a first round impact on Target 4. We will be checking each other’s dope from now on, lesson learned!

King of 2 Miles Queen Lindsey Paul Raton ELR Alamo Precision Rifles

Securing Victory with Three Consecutive Hits at 2 Miles
I went into the finals in 9th place, almost 18,000 points behind the leader, Ryan Cheney. My goal was to finish in the Top Ten. Ryan had a solid final round with one impact on the 2-mile target. At that point few believed his score was catchable. I shot 12th in the order and I was concerned about conditions but they turned out to be great. Target 2 finally started to creep out of the shadows and the wind was not doing its normal, switchy stuff. Robert did an absolutely perfect job as my spotter (see photo above). I couldn’t ask for a better set of eyes for spotting misses and calling wind. I had three consecutive impacts on the Two Mile Target to earn enough points to overtake Ryan, and finish with the high point total for the match.

Editor: Lindsey came through spectacularly at the final 3520-yard distance. One observer noted: “Ryan had it in the bag before Lindsay got hot — three out of five at 3520 yards is HOT!”

King of 2 Miles Queen Lindsey Paul Raton ELR Ryan Cheney

Here are Results from the K02M Finals held Wednesday, 9/29/2021:
King of 2 Miles Queen Lindsey Paul Raton ELR Ryan Cheney

King of 2 Miles Queen Lindsey Paul Raton ELR Alamo Precision Rifles
CLICK HERE for full-screen rifle photo.

Equipment Report — Rifle, Optics, Components

The rifle was built by Alamo Precision Rifles in North Richland Hills, Texas. Lindsey’s spotter, Robert Waggoner, is one of the owners. NOTE: The photo above shows the Nightforce Wedge Prism in place. This prism was used only for the two most distant Finals targets, at 3166 and 3520 yards.

Stiller TAC 408 Action
K&P 1:8″-twist 34″ barrel
Chambered for .375 CheyTac
Terminator T5 Muzzle Brake
McMillan Beast Stock
Jewell Trigger

Mirage Extended Picatinny Rail
Nightforce ATACR 7-36x56mm scope
Nightforce Wedge Prism
Spuhr Scope Mount
Accu-Tac HD-50 Bipod
Armageddon Gear Game Changer rear bag

King of 2 Miles Queen Lindsey Paul Raton ELR Alamo Precision Rifles

Personal Drag Model is Important in ELR Game
I must mention the importance of getting a PDM (Personal Drag Model) from Applied Ballistics. They are generous enough to travel the country with their mobile lab and provide PDMs at no cost. Take advantage of this! It’s not completely plug and play, I had to true my velocity but once I did some testing and adjusting the PDM was within half-MOA of accuracy all the way out to the 3520 yard target.

Loading for the Jumbo .375 CheyTac Cartridge — You Need Quality Dies and Components
The loading process is the same with the big caliber as anything else. The trick is having quality components and dies. The Cutting Edge Lazers have proven themselves over and over. They are very consistent. The biggest challenge we’ve found with these big cartridges is finding a load that is both accurate and has good ES/SD numbers. It seems like when it shoots a single hole the SD is over 10 FPS and when the SD is great, it shoots an unacceptable sized group.

King of 2 Miles Queen Lindsey Paul Raton ELR Alamo Precision Rifles

Q & A with Queen of 2 Miles Lindsey Paul

Q: How satisfying was it to win the match, don the KO2M crown, and be carried in the champion’s chair?

Lindsey: I try really hard to stay grounded and humble. That said, we put everything aside and worked really hard to focus on ELR this year. This win is very satisfying because all the hard work paid off. I’m also very happy I’ve improved as a spotter. Nobody wants to be the weak half of a team.

King of 2 Miles Queen Lindsey Paul Raton ELR Ryan Cheney

Q: What are your training methods for Extreme Long Range?

Lindsey: We don’t often have access to long ranges to train. We had a 2000-yard range near us shut down this year so that was devastating. We did have a training day to confirm dope about two weeks before the match and I’m glad we did. I had an impact at 2 miles that day so that helped my confidence.

Q: Do you employ any special “mental prep” before shooting?

Lindsey: I did something different before the final round of KO2M that seemed to help. I sat in the truck, listened to the Rocky theme song and visualized my entire string of shots with transitions and every shot making an impact. This was something my track coach did with us in high school and I felt kind of goofy but think it helped.

Q: How has being in law enforcement made you a better shooter/competitor?

Lindsey: Yes, I think I find it easy to stay calm under pressure. I still have the ability to get rattled when things aren’t going well but for the most part, I stay focused. [Editor: Lindsey is a law enforcement officer in Texas who has worked regular duties as well as mounted (horseback) patrols.]

Q: What tips do you have for other shooters in the ELR game?

Lindsey: Stop chasing speed! These big guns hide pressure very well and you don’t need to be running on the ragged edge of pressure to get results. We learned that the easy way by ruining brass. I fear someone is going to learn it the hard, catastrophic way.

Q: What specific advice do you have for ladies who want to get involved in ELR?

Lindsey: Get a nice .22 LR (such as a Bergara) and stretch that out to 300-400 yards. It’s a great training tool to learn to make wind calls and you can see if you enjoy shooting prone at far targets without such a huge financial investment. Additionally, all you have to do is find the particular lot of factory rimfire ammo that your gun shoots well. That way you can wait to go down the “rabbit hole” that is reloading.

How Lindsey Paul Became a Champion — Talent and Dedication

King of 2 Miles Queen Lindsey Paul Raton ELR Ryan Cheney
Lindsey holding K02M trophy, with her Alamo Precision Rifles K02M team-mates.

I got involved with the shooting sports as a kid. My dad was a Sheriff’s Deputy so he taught me to shoot at a young age. I grew up shooting handguns a bit. My true passion is hunting so I decided to start shooting competitively to improve my rifle skills and make me a better hunter. We also shoot some .22 LR matches, a local 500-yard prone centerfire match, and I hope to make it to a few NRL Hunter matches next year. The Nightforce Steel Challenge is definitely on the calendar as well.

I initially built my ELR gun hoping to take it out to a big ranch and shoot rocks on cliff faces but after I competed with it once I was hooked. I think my police training helps me to remain calm. I’ve faced enough real-life chaos and serious situations that it’s easy for me to remember that a match is just a competition and if I have a bad day there will be another match to redeem myself.

This has been a wild year for me. We started at Clark’s Knob match and found our equipment had some flaws at the extreme distances. We regrouped, made some changes and things improved. I broke the FCSA Cold Bore world record with three consecutive shots at 2464 yards at the Spring Canyon match in August 2021 and I’ve had some solid finishes at the matches we’ve attended.

Lindsey Set a FCSA Cold Bore World Record in August 2021
Lindsey is definitely a top talent in the ELR game. Back in August 2021 she set a new FCSA Cold Bore World record at 1.5 miles (2464 yards).

King of 2 Miles Queen Lindsey Paul Raton ELR Ryan Cheney

If I were to start over I wouldn’t change much other than investing in a better-quality scope sooner. I am stubborn and I used an Athlon Ares ETR scope for the first couple of years, insisting that it was fine because it fit in my budget. Robert convinced me to borrow a Nightforce ATACR before the Spring Canyon match and I broke the world record so clearly the higher-quality scope with a more reliable erector system has made a difference. Lesson learned — don’t compromise on quality.

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September 30th, 2021

Hail to the New QUEEN of 2 Miles — Lindsey Paul

King of 2 Miles Queen Lindsey Paul Raton ELR Ryan Cheney

This lady can shoot! Lindsey Paul is now officially the top ELR ace on the planet. The talented Texan beat a large field of competitors, including many past KO2M Champions, all guys. We congratulate Lindsey on her outstanding performance, including 3 hits in 5 shots at the max distance, 2.0 miles (3520 yards). No other competitor had more than one hit at 3520 yards, and only four other finalists even had one hit at that distance. Lindsey was shooting a .375 CheyTac cartridge with Cutting Edge 400gr solids.

K02M runner-up Ryan Cheney was leading the field most of the event, being the only shooter to hit ALL his targets (without a miss) at 1692, 2097, and 2376 yards, along with 4 of 5 at 2727 — the best at that distance. But Lindsey came through spectacularly at the final 3520-yard distance. One observer noted: “Ryan had it in the bag before Lindsay got hot — three out of five at 3520 yards is HOT!”

King of 2 Miles Queen Lindsey Paul Raton ELR Ryan Cheney

This was an impressive year, proving that the ELR game continues to evolve, with ever-greater overall performances by the ranks of talented shooters. Match Directors posted: “Every year we get more hits at Two Miles and this has been the best ever — 3 of 5 from Lindsey and five shooters hitting the 2 mile target: Lindsey Paul, Ryan Cheney, Jay Dvorsky, Peter Renwick, and Curtis Roman”.

Here are Results from the K02M Finals held Wednesday, 9/29/2021:
King of 2 Miles Queen Lindsey Paul Raton ELR Ryan Cheney

The K02M Match Organizers Posted this Report on the K02M Facebook Page:

FINAL RESULTS FROM 2021 KO2M
NRA Whittington Center, Raton, New Mexico
27-29 September, 2021

Congratulations to all shooters, spotters and teams that drove to Raton from all over the USA and even more to those that hit the targets. Special thanks to the sponsors that made the prize table possible.

A special mention to the King (Queen) of 2 Miles 2021 Lindsay Paul, along with Rei Hoang, and Jaclyn Bryan. [They] proved that women can be as good or better shooters than men. I hope that each year we have more and more women shooters.

Congratulations too for Ryan Cheney who shot so well that he nearly made it to King.

A special mention to all the spotters that drove their shooters to the targets and are always there in their shadow. They all deserve an applause.

We have proven the point, once again, that hits at 2 Miles are possible and not just luck.

Thanks to all for being at KO2M
King of 2 Miles Team

King of 2 Miles Queen Lindsey Paul Raton ELR Ryan Cheney

The Queen of 2 Miles Thanks Her Team and Sponsors
Here is Lindsey’s Report on her Achievement — being the first woman ever to win the King, oops, make that QUEEN of 2 Miles Competition.

“I don’t even know where to start! What a wild ride this year this has been. First and foremost thank you to my amazing guy Robert for being the best spotter I could ask for. He is responsible for making most of this happen with his great wind calls, corrections and support. Thank you to the rest of my team.

Jeff had tough conditions with shade on targets for his final round making spotting misses impossible but still finished with a super-respectable 6th place. Shane has come a long way in a short time and did great as well with a 19th place finish, just below the cutoff for the finals. I’m really proud of my performance as Robert’s spotter. He forgot to write down his dope for target 3 and I still managed to help him get on target and he finished in 26th. Jay we missed the hell out of you and hope you are back to 100% soon!

Thank you to my sponsors Alamo Precision Rifles, McMillan Fiberglass Stocks, and Kenneth Johnson at K&P Rifle Barrels. The amazing Cutting Edge Bullets struck again! They just flat out work!

My Applied Ballistics PDM (Personal Drag Model) was nearly spot on out to two miles. Your contribution to shooting sports is beyond remarkable. We couldn’t do what we do without your support.

I was concerned about switching to an Accu-Tac bipod right before this match but I’m dang sure a believer now! I picked up a Nightforce scope of the prize table which was just what I needed as I was borrowing one. Thank you to them and all of the other sponsors who stepped up to support this match and the shooting community.

DNA Custom Engraving also made me the coolest challenge coin ever!”

King of 2 Miles Queen Lindsey Paul Raton ELR Ryan Cheney

Lindsay added praise for her competitors: “Congratulations to all the shooters, NRA Whittington Center is my favorite place to shoot but it can sure be challenging. Ryan Cheney made me work for it, congratulations man, you shot excellent! Rei and Jaclyn how awesome was it to have three ladies in the finals?! Congratulations to both of you!”

King of 2 Miles Queen Lindsey Paul Raton ELR Ryan Cheney

Lindsey Set a FCSA Cold Bore World Record in August 2021
Lindsey is definitely a top talent in the ELR game. Back in August 2021 she set a new FCSA Cold Bore World record at 1.5 miles (2464 yards). Lindsey posted: “WHAT A DAY! I set a new cold bore world record with 3 impacts at 2464 yds! I’m so thankful for an awesome team and my damn fine Alamo Precision Rifles .375 CheyTac. The 400gr Cutting Edge Lazers shined as usual!”

King of 2 Miles Queen Lindsey Paul Raton ELR Ryan Cheney

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September 28th, 2021

King of 2 Miles Event Kicks Off in Raton, New Mexico

Ko2m king 2 two miles raton new mexico whittington ELR Extreme long range

The 2021 King of 2 Miles ELR competition officially commenced yesterday at the Whittington Center in Raton, New Mexico. This unique event, the “Olympics” of Extreme Long Range (ELR) shooting, attracts many of the best marksmen on the planet, campaigning rifles capable of mind-blowing accuracy at extreme distances. The bullet, barrel, and optics technology on display was impressive — as was the amazing marksmanship. Ryan Cheney is leading the KO2M Qualifications after Day 1&2, shooting perfect 3-for-3s without a miss at 1692, 2097, and 2376 yards, and getting one hit at the most distant 2550-yard target. SEE Day One and Two Results.

Here are some of the cartridges used in ELR Competition. With these high-capacity cartridges, many competitors are using ultra-precision lathe-turned solid bullets.

Ko2m king 2 two miles raton new mexico whittington ELR Extreme long range
Big ELR Cartridges left to right: .460 Steyr, .416 Barrett, .375 CheyTac, 33XC, .338 Lapua Magnum, and .300 Remington Ultra Magnum.

Top Results in 2021 Qualifications
Here are the sixteen highest-scoring shooters at the 2021 KO2M match, after two days of qualifications. The Top 16 advance to the Finals tomorrow.

Ko2m king 2 two miles raton new mexico whittington ELR Extreme long range

Watch K02M Run from 2019 with 360-degree Views
Here is Bryan Litz Shooting K02M in 2019. NOTE, you can slide left/right to get a 360-degree view of the firing line — give it a try! View on Facebook, if 360° movie does not appear on your device.

Ko2m king 2 two miles raton new mexico whittington ELR Extreme long range

Here are Target Distances and Angles
Ko2m king 2 two miles raton new mexico whittington ELR Extreme long range

Paul PhillipsPaul Phillips, 2019 K02M Champion, posted: “I’m very happy with Clay Rhoden with Longshot Cameras and James Devoglaer with KVR Ranch. They performed very well today in qualifications. They hit every plate out to 2550 yards [after the cold bore target]. [This was] their first time at King of 2 Miles!”

Shown below is the ammunition Paul Phillips loaded for his Global Precision Group team using Cutting Edge lathe-turned bullets:

Ko2m king 2 two miles raton new mexico whittington ELR Extreme long range

Applied Ballistics Brings High-Tech Gear to the KO2M Competition
The Applied Ballistics Team arrived early in Raton to do testing with their high-tech Doppler Radar equipment. This can provide very precise custom ballistics profiles for the ELR rifles. When you’re shooting at these extreme ranges, your come-up tables have to be perfect.

Ko2m king 2 two miles raton new mexico whittington ELR Extreme long range

“Goooooood Moooooorning New Mexico! It’s a BEAUTIFUL day on the range! We’re setting up the Mobile Lab on the Cooper Range at the NRA Whittington Center and we’ll be hanging out in this gorgeous place.”

Ko2m king 2 two miles raton new mexico whittington ELR Extreme long range
Ko2m king 2 two miles raton new mexico whittington ELR Extreme long range

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September 27th, 2021

ELR Italian Style — Extreme Shot One Mile Italia

Gary Costello Tapani Italy italia Extreme Shot One Mile Italia

While the King of 2 Miles event kicks off today in Raton, New Mexico this week, another Extreme Long Range (ELR) competition just concluded in Trapani on the west coast of the Italian island of Sicily. The challenging Extreme Shot One Mile Italia in Sicily took place September 22-26, 2021.

Gary Costello Tapani Italy italia Extreme Shot One Mile Italia
Gary Costello Tapani Italy italia Extreme Shot One Mile Italia

Our British friend Gary Costello took top honors. He reports: “The end of a fantastic week in Sicily, competing at the Extreme Shot One Mile Italia competition. It was great to take home the win. All credit goes to my shooting partner/spotter Stuart who did the business! And congratulations to the other podium winners: Second Place Iacono Rosario and Third Place Rod Formosa. A big thanks to the organizers for a great competition. We made many new friends. See you all next year!”

Gary Costello Tapani Italy italia Extreme Shot One Mile Italia

Click below to watch Official Video of Extreme Shot One Mile Italia winner Gary Costello’s final string. The video records the shots in real time as his spotter was seeing it. This last string had steel targets at 1400m, 1500m, and 1640m. The 1400 and 1500m targets were 60x70cm plates while the most distant 1640m target used a 70x80cm plate. 1640 meters is 1.019 miles.

If you watch this video closely, you can see Gary’s 33XC bullets score hits, including a clear hit on the 1640m target (starting at 3:10 time-mark). Gary’s shots produced visible dark spots on the steel.

Gary Costello Tapani Italy italia Extreme Shot One Mile Italia

Gary was shooting the 33XC cartridge with Berger 300 OTM Bullets. His big ELR rifle, built by GS Precision in the UK, features a BAT ‘M’ RBLP action, Manners LRT carbon stock, and Benchmark 34″, 1:7.5″-twist, five-groove barrel. Gary notes that barrel only had 30 shots through it when the match began. The scope was a March 5-42x56mm HM FFP wide angle with MIL FML-3 reticle.

Gary Costello Tapani Italy italia Extreme Shot One Mile Italia

The event offered a long range challenge set in the beautiful Sicilian countryside with targets placed from 500m to 1640m (one mile is 1609.34 meters). We love the location, and participants praised the event.

Gary Costello’s Post-Match Report:

Q: How is the range in Trapani and what were the wind/weather conditions during the match?

Gary: The range is situated in a valley with distant tall hills. This makes a great backstop. The weather, as you would expect, was warm, usually 80-85 degrees F. The wind was strong, predominately from the left going up the valley. However, it was being affected by the topography. Some of the closer targets were as difficult as the long ones due to the conditions.

Gary Costello Tapani Italy italia Extreme Shot One Mile Italia
This shows the target locations at the Sicily range except for the cold bore and “surprise” targets.

Q: What do you like about ELR competition?

Gary: This was my first ELR competition. I have been ‘lurking’ for a while and made a trip to France for KO2M back in 2019 (just to watch). ELR is very different to F-Class. However the fundamentals are similar. I do like the longer ranges and the challenges these create to make contact. An accurate rifle is essential.

Gary Costello Tapani Italy italia Extreme Shot One Mile Italia

Q: How did you like Sicily and the hospitality of fellow competitors?

Gary: Sicily is fantastic, with super-friendly people. All the guys at the range and the organizers bent over backwards to accommodate and help. Plus there were fantastic lunches delivered daily! Logistics and COVID restrictions didn’t make the trip easy. However it was all worth it.

Gary Costello Tapani Italy italia Extreme Shot One Mile Italia

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June 15th, 2021

.375 Enabler — Extreme Ammo for Extreme Long Range (ELR)

Berger 379 grain 379gr solid bullet .375 caliber enabler

The .375 EnABELR Cartridge — Big and Fast

The .375 EnABELR cartridge is slightly shorter than a .375 CheyTac so it allows the round to mag-feed. Applied Ballistics is currently using brass made by Peterson. The .375 EnABELR has achieved impressive velocities — 2990 FPS — with prototype Berger 379-grain solid bullets fired from a 1:7″-twist 30″ barrel. Applied Ballistics may also test 1:8″-twist and 1:9″-twist barrels. READ Bullet Testing Report.

The .375 EnABELR cartridge was designed to offer .375 CheyTac performance in a slightly shorter package: “The problem with the .375 CheyTac is that, when loaded with the highest performance .375 caliber bullets (379-407 gr Berger Solids, and the 400-425 grain Cutting Edge Lazers) the round is not magazine feed-able in any action that’s sized for CheyTac cartridges.

Berger 379 grain 379gr solid bullet .375 caliber enabler

“Knowing the .375 CheyTac produced substantial performance, and that it was just too long for magazine feeding, made it easy to converge on a design for the .375 EnABELR. We just had to make the case short enough to achieve magazine length with the desired bullets, while adding a little more diameter to keep the case capacity similar to the .375 CheyTac. The resulting basic shape is quite similar in proportions to the successful .338 Norma Magnum Cartridge which, interestingly, was selected as the cartridge for General Dynamics Lightweight Medium Machine Gun (LWMMG).”

.375 cheytac .408 cheytac EnABLER Applied Ballistics Bryan Litz Cadex defense
Here is Mitchell Fitzpatrick, shooting the 375 EnABELR in an ELR Competition.

.375 cheytac .408 cheytac EnABLER Applied Ballistics Bryan Litz Cadex defense

Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Competition, Reloading 1 Comment »
April 15th, 2021

Go Big or Go Home — Care and Feeding of .50 BMG Rifles

fifty caliber shooting association

Owning and Feeding ‘The Big Bore’ — .50 BMG

Is The Challenge Of Big Bore Extreme Range Shooting Right For You?
By James Patterson
This article originally written for the Sinclair Reloading Press

Fifty 50 Caliber shooting Association

Handling a .50 BMG Rig
Is a .50 BMG caliber rifle difficult to shoot? Not at all. The relatively heavy weight of a standard rifle at 30 pounds or more combined with a very efficient muzzle brake makes it a pleasure to shoot. The typical recoil can be compared to a .243 rifle or a 12 gauge trap load. On the other hand, the burning of a typical load of 230 grains of powder combined with that muzzle brake makes the muzzle blast experience exhilarating. A first time shooter will fire, pause for a moment in awe at the muzzle blast, and then break out into what has become known as “The 50 Caliber Grin”, almost impossible to wipe from ones face. My daughter started competing with the .50 BMG at 18 (115 lbs of tall skinny girl) and happily shoots 100+ rounds in the course of a match, her grin on the last round is as wide as on the first! Many members and competitors in the FCSA are women and many have distinguished themselves as excellent marksman having set world records on numerous occasions.

50 BMG FCSA 50 Caliber 50 BMG

50 BMG Fifty Caliber Shooting Association

Cost of Big-Bore Shooting
Is owning and shooting a .50 BMG caliber rifle expensive? Relatively speaking yes, but one must put it into perspective. Rifles may run from $2500 to $7000, maybe even more for a top of the line custom rifle. A good scope will set you back $1000 to $3500. And while excellent commercial ammo is made, it is hard to find these days and runs from $4 to $6 a round. Most serious shooters start reloading for the rifle as soon as practical, not only for the economics of reloading but also for the ability to fine tune custom ammo for their specific rifle. It’s a very rare match that is won shooting commercial ammo. I recently compared the cost of my hobby — owning, shooting, and competing with the 50 BMG — with a friend whose hobby is snowmobiling. Factoring in the cost of equipment, licensing, gasoline, clothing, etc. it was soon obvious that my hobby was significantly less expensive than his.

50 BMG FCSA Fifty Caliber

50 BMG FCSA fifty Caliber

FCSA 50 Caliber 50 BMG

Getting Started
FCSA 50 BMG Fifty Caliber Shooting AssociationSo how does one get started? You could do as I did, purchase a rifle not knowing what you were really getting into; or you could come out to a FCSA-sponsored event, shoot a number of different rifles, rub shoulders with those who have already taken the plunge, and see if this sport is right for you. While membership in the Fifty Caliber Shooters Association (FSCA) is required to compete at a FSCA event, membership is not required to come and experience first hand what is going on. If you have any inclination that you are interested in the extreme sport of long rang, big bore shooting then a year’s membership in the FCSA is only $60 ($20 for active duty military) a significant bargain if it helps you make just one well-informed equipment choice. In addition one of the primary functions of the FCSA is helping to identify active members near you who can help you understand just what is involved and help you ‘get your feet wet’ in this challenging sport.

FCSA 50 Caliber 50 BMG

Photos courtesy FCSA Photo Gallery.
Permalink - Articles, Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Competition, Tech Tip 2 Comments »
September 15th, 2020

Great Book: Modern Advancements in Long Range Shooting II

Bryan Litz Applied Ballistics Modern Advancements Volume 2 II testing pre-order

If you buy one book about Long Range Shooting, this should be it. Based on sophisticated testing and research, this 356-page hardcover from Applied Ballistics offers important insights you won’t find anywhere else. Modern Advancements in Long Range Shooting – Volume II, the latest treatise from Bryan Litz, is chock full of information, much of it derived through sophisticated field testing. As Chief Ballistician for Berger Bullets (and a trained rocket scientist), author Bryan Litz is uniquely qualified. Bryan is also an ace sling shooter and a past F-TR National Champion. Moreover, Bryan’s company, Applied Ballistics, has been a leader in the Extreme Long Range (ELR) discipline.

AUDIO FILE: Bryan Litz Talks about Modern Advancements in Long Range Shooting, Volume 2. (Sound file loads when you click button).

Volume II of Modern Advancements in Long Range Shooting ($39.95) contains all-new content derived from research by Applied Ballistics. Author Bryan Litz along with contributing authors Nick Vitalbo and Cal Zant use the scientific method and careful testing to answer important questions faced by long range shooters. In particular, this volume explores the subject of bullet dispersion including group convergence. Advanced hand-loading subjects are covered such as: bullet pointing and trimming, powder measurement, flash hole deburring, neck tension, and fill ratio. Each topic is explored with extensive live fire testing, and the resulting information helps to guide hand loaders in a deliberate path to success. The current bullet library of measured G1 and G7 ballistic coefficients is included as an appendix. This library currently has data on 533 bullets in common use by long range shooters.

Bryan tells us that one purpose of this book is to dispel myths and correct commonly-held misconceptions: “Modern Advancements in Long Range Shooting aims to end the misinformation which is so prevalent in long range shooting. By applying the scientific method and taking a Myth Buster approach, the state of the art is advanced….”

Bullet Dispersion and Group Convergence
Bryan Litz Applied Ballistics Modern Advancements Volume 2 II testing pre-order

Part 1 of this Volume is focused on the details of rifle bullet dispersion. Chapter 1 builds a discussion of dispersion and precision that every shooter will benefit from in terms of understanding how it impacts their particular shooting application. How many shots should you shoot in a group? What kind of 5-shot 100 yard groups correlate to average or winning precision levels in 1000 yard F-Class shooting?

Chapter 2 presents a very detailed investigation of the mysterious concept of group convergence, which is the common idea that some guns can shoot smaller (MOA) groups at longer ranges. This concept is thoroughly tested with extensive live fire, and the results answer a very important question that has baffled shooters for many generations.

Bryan Litz Applied Ballistics Modern Advancements Volume 2 II testing pre-orderPart 2 of this Volume is focused on various aspects of advanced hand-loading. Modern Advancements (Vol. II) employs live fire testing to answer the important questions that precision hand loaders are asking. What are the best ways to achieve MVs with low ES and SD? Do flash hole deburring, neck tension, primer selection, and fill ratio and powder scales sensitivity make a difference and how much? All of these questions are explored in detail with a clear explanation of test results.

One of the important chapters of Part 2 examines bullet pointing and trimming. Applied Ballistics tested 39 different bullet types from .224 through .338 caliber. Ten samples of each bullet were tested for BC in each of the following configurations: original out of the box, pointed, trimmed, pointed and trimmed. The effect on the average BC as well as the uniformity in BC was measured and tabulated, revealing what works best.

Part 3 covers a variety of general research topics. Contributing author Nick Vitalbo, a laser technology expert, tested 22 different laser rangefinders. Nick’s material on rangefinder performance is a landmark piece of work. Nick shows how shooters can determine the performance of a rangefinder under various lighting conditions, target sizes, and reflectivities.

Chapter 9 is a thorough analysis of rimfire ammunition. Ballistic Performance of Rifle Bullets, 2nd Edition presented live fire data on 95 different types of .22 rimfire ammunition, each tested in five different barrels having various lengths and twist rates. Where that book just presented the data, Chapter 9 of this book offers detailed analysis of all the test results and shows what properties of rimfire ammunition are favorable, and how the BCs, muzzle velocities and consistency of the ammo are affected by the different barrels.

Chapter 10 is a discussion of aerodynamic drag as it relates to ballistic trajectory modeling. You will learn from the ground up: what an aerodynamic drag model is, how it’s measure and used to predict trajectories. Analysis is presented which shows how the best trajectory models compare to actual measured drop in the real world.

Finally, contributing author Cal Zant of the Precision Rifle Blog presents a study of modern carbon fiber-wrapped barrels in Chapter 11. The science and technology of these modern rifle barrels is discussed, and then everything from point of impact shift to group sizes are compared for several samples of each type of barrel including standard steel barrels.

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September 6th, 2020

Sunday Gunday: .375 CheyTac ELR Rig and Cartridge Info

.375 Cheytac Extreme long range rifle ELR BAT Action McMillan Stock Beast Terminator Muzzle Brake SG Precision

NOTE: The .375 CheyTac is a proprietary cartridge of CheyTac USA. CheyTac® is a registered trademark. CheyTac® bullets, brass, and ammunition are offered by CheyTac USA, which also produces a variety of high-quality firearms for civilian and military use. See all CheyTac® products at CheyTac.com.

.375 Cheytac Extreme long range rifle ELR BAT Action McMillan Stock

This Extreme Long Range (“ELR”) rifle features a massive BAT “L” Round Action, McMillan Beast Stock, 38″ Bartlein 1:7″-twist Barrel, T5 Terminator Muzzle Brake, R.A.D. Recoil Reduction unit, and a customized Cheek Riser. The “Beast” stock name is appropriate — this rifle weighs a massive 38 pounds. Including the T5 brake, the finished barrel, chambered in .375 CheyTac, is 44″ long! All the work was done by Hall-of-Fame shooter and gunsmith Thomas “Speedy” Gonzales, of S.G. Precision LLC in San Antonio, Texas. If you want a rifle like this, Speedy says the lead time is 6-9 months. CONTACT SPEEDY, or call (210) 368-9010, or (972) 672-6630.

.375 Cheytac Extreme long range rifle ELR BAT Action McMillan Stock Beast Terminator Muzzle Brake SG Precision

.375 Cheytac Extreme long range rifle ELR BAT Action McMillan Stock Beast Terminator Muzzle Brake SG Precision

.375 Cheytac Extreme long range rifle ELR BAT Action McMillan Stock Beast Terminator Muzzle Brake SG Precision
Speedy milled vents in the fore-end. He told us “when you’re burning 150+ grains of powder you need all the ventilation you can get to help reduce the barrel heat.”

.375 Cheytac Extreme long range rifle ELR BAT Action McMillan Stock Beast Terminator Muzzle Brake SG Precision
There are many good brakes out there, then there’s the “TERMINATOR”! — Speedy

.375 Cheytac Extreme long range rifle ELR BAT Action McMillan Stock Beast Terminator Muzzle Brake SG Precision
The Phoenix Bipod employs a lowering modification.

.375 Cheytac Extreme long range rifle ELR BAT Action McMillan Stock Beast Terminator Muzzle Brake SG Precision

.375 Cheytac Extreme long range rifle ELR BAT Action McMillan Stock Beast Terminator Muzzle Brake SG Precision

About the .375 CheyTac Cartridge

Peterson .375 Cartridge Brass Cheytac K02M

Some of the most successful ELR cartridges are based on the CheyTac family, including the .375 CheyTac (9.5×77) and .408 CheyTac (10.36 x 77). This .375 Cheytac cartridge has proven to be tough and accurate. And it is capable of winning — our friend Derek Rodgers won the 2017 King of 2 Miles (K02M) event shooting a .375 CheyTac (9.5×77).

.375 CheyTac — K02M-Winning, World-Beating Cartridge

Derek Rodgers is the 2017 King of 2 Miles. He is also the first-ever human to ever hit the maximum distance target target at 3368 yards (1.91 miles). His cartridge choice? The .375 CheyTac. Derek ran Cutting Edge Bullets in Peterson brass with Hodgdon H50BMG powder.

Q: Why did you choose the .375 CheyTac cartridge?

Derek: When I was asked to join the Applied Ballistics Team, I needed to get an ELR rifle built in a short period of time. I was under a very tight time schedule to get the project complete. In an effort to eliminate variables, I decided to keep things standard and as simple as possible. I chose the .375 CheyTac for the ease of getting components. The larger rifles are more difficult to get components quickly and I felt like the .375 CheyTac had enough attributes to be competitive at ELR distances.

.375 Cheytac Derek Rodgers KO2M King 2 miles

.375 Cheytac Derek Rodgers KO2M King 2 miles

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September 3rd, 2020

Go Big or Go Home — Big Presses Needed for Big ELR Cartridges

Ko2m king two miles ELR .416 Barrett cheytac .50 BMG Extreme long range press

In the ELR game, particularly the King of 2 Miles (KO2M), it’s “go big or go home”. The top shooters run large-capacity cartridges that push large-caliber, ultra-high BC bullets at very high velocities. Bullets launched by cartridges such as the .416 Barrett can sustain supersonic velocities at Extreme Long Ranges — and that’s what it takes to win. The .416 Barrett can launch a 550-grain solid bullet at 3000+ FPS.

.416 Barrett cartridge ELR .50 BMG RCBS press
Photo from ELR Competitor Corbin Shell.

2018 and 2019 Kings of 2 Miles Loaded on RCBS Presses
So how do you load jumbo cartridges such as the .416 Barrett? It takes a big, heavy, super-strong reloading press. We’ve learned that the last two Kings of 2 Miles, Paul Phillips (2019) and Robert Brantley (2019) both loaded their KO2M ammo on RCBS AmmoMaster .50 BMG presses. Phillips loaded .416 Barrett ammo, while Brantley loaded custom .416 MCS rounds.

In 2018, Robert Brantley topped the field using his custom .416 MCS loads perfected on the AmmoMaster .50 BMG Press. This year, Brantley took a close second to 2019 KO2M winner Paul Phillips. Both Phillips and Brantley use the AmmoMaster .50 BMG single stage press kit and RCBS .416 Barrett dies to hand-load for extreme long-range. “My ammo has been much more consistent after switching to the RCBS press and dies,” remarked Phillips, who runs the Global Precision Group. Brantley said he uses RCBS products for most of his reloading needs — from the dies and AmmoMaster, to the ChargeMaster and Brass Boss. His custom .416 MCS loads launch a 550-grain bullet more than 3,100 fps.

Ko2m king two miles ELR .416 Barrett cheytac .50 BMG Extreme long range press

Loading with RCBS AmmoMaster .50 BMG Press
This video shows reloading with the RCBS AmmoMaster .50 BMG press. While this video shows .50 BMG cases being loaded, the principles are the same for loading the .416 Barrett used by both Brantley and Phillips. Big cases need big presses!

Derek Rodgers Shooting the .375 CheyTac at K02M in 2017
Another ELR ace, 2017 King of 2 Miles champion Derek Rodgers, favored the .375 CheyTac cartridge. For his successful K02M quest, Derek ran Cutting Edge Bullets in Peterson brass with Hodgdon H50BMG powder. The video below shows Derek in action at the 2017 KO2M event.

The KO2M competition is a two-day extreme long-range (ELR) match held at the NRA Whittington Center outside Raton, New Mexico. Teams consist of one shooter and up to two wind coaches/spotters, who fire on steel targets ranging from about 1,500 to 3,500 yards.

KO2M .375 CheyTac AmmoMaster Derek Rodgers

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June 24th, 2020

Go Big or Go Home — Reloading .416 Barrett with 50 BMG Press

Ko2m king two miles ELR .416 Barrett cheytac .50 BMG Extreme long range press

In the ELR game, particularly the King of 2 Miles (KO2M), it’s “go big or go home”. The top shooters run large-capacity cartridges that push large-caliber, ultra-high BC bullets at very high velocities. Bullets launched by cartridges such as the .416 Barrett can sustain supersonic velocities at Extreme Long Ranges — and that’s what it takes to win. The .416 Barrett can launch a 550-grain solid bullet at 3000+ FPS.

.416 Barrett cartridge ELR .50 BMG RCBS press
Photo from ELR Competitor Corbin Shell.

2018 and 2019 Kings of 2 Miles Loaded on RCBS Presses
So how do you load jumbo cartridges such as the .416 Barrett? It takes a big, heavy, super-strong reloading press. We’ve learned that the last two Kings of 2 Miles, Paul Phillips (2019) and Robert Brantley (2019) both loaded their KO2M ammo on RCBS AmmoMaster .50 BMG presses. Phillips loaded .416 Barrett ammo, while Brantley loaded custom .416 MCS rounds.

In 2018, Robert Brantley topped the field using his custom .416 MCS loads perfected on the AmmoMaster .50 BMG Press. This year, Brantley took a close second to 2019 KO2M winner Paul Phillips. Both Phillips and Brantley use the AmmoMaster .50 BMG single stage press kit and RCBS .416 Barrett dies to hand-load for extreme long-range. “My ammo has been much more consistent after switching to the RCBS press and dies,” remarked Phillips, who runs the Global Precision Group. Brantley said he uses RCBS products for most of his reloading needs — from the dies and AmmoMaster, to the ChargeMaster and Brass Boss. His custom .416 MCS loads launch a 550-grain bullet more than 3,100 fps.

Ko2m king two miles ELR .416 Barrett cheytac .50 BMG Extreme long range press

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May 31st, 2020

ELR with $99 Rifle — Hitting Steel at 2240 Yards with Iron Sights!

World Record Iron Sights K31 Buffalo bison Utah
World Record Iron Sights K31 Buffalo bison Utah
Magnified 8X view looking down-range at buffalo target.

Could You Hit a Steel Buffalo at 2240 Yards (1.27 miles) … with Iron Sights?

Impossible as that may seem, that’s exactly what Ernie Jimenez did some years back at the North Springs Shooting Range in Price, Utah (elevation 5,627′). Shooting a milsurp Swiss K31 rifle chambered for the 7.5×55 Swiss round, Jimenez placed four hits on a three-foot-high, bison-shaped steel target placed a staggering 2240 yards from the firing line. Not bad for a rifle which Jimenez acquired many years ago for just $99.00. Of course he did have plenty of misses along the way (and Ernie even managed to hit the plate shielding his camera).

This video is set to start half-way through, when the shooter starts making hits:

The whole process was recorded on video and posted on YouTube. The Long-Range Shooters of Utah say this is an official Guinness World Record for longest shot with iron sights. We can’t confirm that, but it still is an impressive feat. Jimenez had to compensate for a huge amount of bullet drop. His K31’s long-range military sights helped but he still had to aim well over the pink bison. To see how far that target is, watch the video at 14:30 — a camera at the firing line zooms all the way back until the bison is nothing but a tiny dot. The photo below show the target at 8X magnification, but it’s still barely visible.

Here’s the unmagnified, “naked-eye” view from the firing line. Can you see a pink buffalo at all?
World Record Iron Sights K31 Buffalo bison Utah

Bullet Dropped Over 400 Feet along its Trajectory
To roughly gauge the bullet drop, we took a 7.5x55mm Swiss load from the Hodgdon Reloading Center. With max “book” load of H4350, a 168gr Sierra HPBT has a muzzle velocity of 2524 FPS. According to JBM Ballistics, that bullet will drop over 400 feet during its flight. That’s lot of hold-over! Assuming a 100-yard zero, 59° temp, and 5,600′ altitude, JBM calculates that the drop to 2250 yards is a stunning 210.9 MOA — that’s 4969.9 inches, or 414.15 feet!

World Record Iron Sights K31 Buffalo bison Utah

In the first part of the video, shooter Ernie Jimenez talks about his hand-loads and his K31 rifle. Here is an example of the distinctive straight-pull K31 (Karabiner Model 1931). Image courtesy AIM Surplus.

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May 1st, 2020

Bryan Litz and Emil Praslick on Sniper’s Hide Podcast Series

Berger Bryan Litz Podcast The Everyday Sniper Sniper's Hide Frank Galli emil praslick

Berger Bryan Litz Podcast The Everyday Sniper Sniper's Hide Frank Galli emil praslickBerger Ballistics Experts in 10-Part Podcast Series
Bryan Litz and Emil Praslick III will be featured guests on a 10-part Sniper’s Hide Podcast series about Ballistics. These 10 Podcasts will be delivered through The Everyday Sniper podcast platform. The series will help listeners learn more about Ballistic Coefficients (BCs), why BC consistency is important, and how BC effects both accuracy and precision.

LISTEN to BC PodCast Number One »

In this 10-part series, Bryan Litz of Applied Ballistics and Wind Wizard Emil Praslick talk with Sniper’s Hide head honcho Frank Galli. Along with Ballistics, the ten podcasts will cover a variety of shooting-related topics including: long range shooting, precision rifle builds, training, wind effects, industry updates, and more.

The 10-part podcast series begins May 1, 2020. Each podcast is an in-depth discussion of Berger’s bi-weekly “No-BS BCs” ballistics articles, penned by Bryan Litz, Berger’s Chief Ballistician. In Episode One Litz defines BC and its purpose. Episode Two explains how BC can vary with velocity (and why that’s important). As the series continues, examining the key requirements for successful long range shooting, the experts explain why BC consistency is the most important factor in long-range bullet performance. Learn more about “The Everyday Sniper” BC podcast series at NoBSBC.com.

“This is a great opportunity to open up our platform to Berger with Bryan and Emil. Giving people this kind of access through the partnership is a Masterclass opportunity for anyone interested in long range shooting”, stated Frank Galli.

Podcast Schedule and Topics

5/1 What is a Ballistic Coefficient?

5/15 Variation in BC with Velocity

5/29 BC Effect on Accuracy, Short and Long Range

6/12 BC and Performance

6/26 Shot to Shot Consistency – Sources of BC Inconsistency

7/10 BC Effect on Precision, Short and Long Range

7/24 Comparing BCs

8/7 SC of BC, Bell Curve

8/21 Mfg. Effects on BC, Accuracy and Precision

9/4 MV-BC Trade Off and Different Brands

Here are some of the Ballistics Topics available on the Berger Website:

Berger Bryan Litz Podcast The Everyday Sniper Sniper's Hide Frank Galli emil praslick

To learn more about Berger’s No-BS BCs and to read Bryan Litz’s bi-weekly articles, visit NoBSBC.com and Bergerbullets.com.

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January 12th, 2020

Sunday Gunday: Buell’s Beast — .375 CheyTac for ELR

Darrell Buell ELR Rifle .376 Cheytac BAT Action 35
Darrell Buell ELR Rifle .376 Cheytac BAT Action 35

Buell’s Beast with Massive 35 Inch Barrel
A few seasons back, Our friend Darrell Buell built a new Beast — a monster 64-inch-long .375 CheyTac that weighs more than 70 pounds! Designed for ultra-long-range shooting (two miles and beyond), this beast represents the state-of-the-art in extreme long-range rifles. NOTE: to see more details, click the two images above to open Full-Screen Photos.

Darrell Buell ELR Rifle .376 Cheytac BAT Action 35

Darrell reports: “This rifle is pretty much purpose-built to shoot 2+ miles extremely accurately. It is a .375 CheyTac (lengthened) built on a BAT 2.5″ action. The custom 35″, 1:10″-twist Brux barrel is a fat, 2″-diameter ‘straight taper’ with fluting. A custom 5″-long muzzle brake is fitted at the end. All barreled action work was done by R.W. Snyder Custom Rifles. The stock was created to fit the build by PDC Custom, and the massive muzzle brake as well.” The “bridge” at the end may look like a barrel block, but it’s not — the barrel completely free-floats. (The Picatinny rail on top of the bridge allows use of an overhanging bipod as an alternative to the JoyPod).

Darrell Buell ELR Rifle .376 Cheytac BAT Action 35
Darrell has lots of elevation on tap: “With 150 MOA in the Ivey rings, another 20 MOA in the scope rail, 55 MOA in the Nightforce Competition scope, and 10 MOA in the FCR-1 reticle, there’s an impressive +235 MOA available.”

Counter-Weighted SEB Joy-Pod Up Front
The bipod Darrell will be using for his ELR sessions and the ‘King of 2 Miles’ match is a custom counter-weighted JoyPod crafted by Seb Lambang. With the counter-weight, Darrell says his monster 70-lb gun “adjusts as smoothly as an F-T/R rig”. The glass is a Nightforce 15-55x52mm Competition scope carried in Ivey +150 MOA rings, which in turn are mounted to a +20 MOA BAT scope rail. Darrell says: “It’s been a heck of a couple months, getting this monster built in time, thanks particularly to Southern Cerakote, which turned it around in less than 24 hours.”

Buell’s Beast runs 350gr solid bullets at approximately 3250 fps. Check out the massive .375 CheyTac cartridge compared to a .308 Winchester:

Darrell Buell ELR Rifle .376 Cheytac BAT Action 35

Darrell Buell ELR Rifle .376 Cheytac BAT Action 35

Darrell Buell ELR Rifle .376 Cheytac BAT Action 35

Bipod F-Class F-TR Sebastian Lambang PodPad Joystick Joypod

This one-of-a-kind “JoyPod” was produced by Seb Lambang specifically for Buell’s big .375 CheyTac rifle. Darrell needed a JoyPod that wouldn’t sink under a heavy load. Seb explains: “This is the world’s first JoyPod equipped with an adjustable counterweight, to balance his 75-lb gun. I did some experiments and put some weights ranging up to 60+ lbs on the top, and I found that the joystick action works like a regular one….it’s smooth, light, and precise. In addition, the counterweight can be bent down to not interfere with the bottom of the barrel. The counterweight is secured into the front center shaft by a thumb screw, and there is a tightly fitted pivotal joint on the counterweight to allow angle adjustment.”

Darrell is happy with his customized coaxial bipod: “In addition to the adjustable counterweight system on the front, this JoyPod comes with a longer, solid joystick. These additions will make for extremely smooth, precise adjustments, even if the rifle weighs in at 75 pounds or more. Not including the counterweight, the actual structure of this bipod weighs in at a mere 1.09 pounds — exactly what the standard JoyPod weighs. It is extremely strong, however. Seb has pictures of himself standing on the pod … and he weighs 150 pounds!”

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August 18th, 2019

Sunday GunDay: New 33XC Rifle for Reigning King of 2 Miles

ELR light class Paul Phillips Global Precision

ELR light class Paul Phillips Global PrecisionNew Cartridge, New Rifle for the King
Paul Phillips is the reigning King of 2 Miles. The founder of the Global Precision Group, Paul is one of the top ELR marksmen on the planet. He has also been a team-mate of past K02M winners.

Paul recently put together a new rifle for the 25-lb max, .338 caliber-or-under ELR Class. This is chambered for the 33XC, an efficient new cartridge devised by 11-time National HP Champion David Tubb. With promising initial testing at 500 yards, it looks like Paul’s 33XC project will be a success. The rifle’s first match will be the NRA Extreme Long Range Championship, to be held August 21-23, 2019 at Camp Atterbury, Indiana.

ELR light class Paul Phillips Global Precision

ELR light class Paul Phillips Global Precision

Paul reports: “The 33XC is ready for the NRA ELR Nationals. I have tested loads from 3100-3450 FPS and and will settle on a load around 3250 FPS [which is] my most accurate load so far. The Peterson Cartridge brass is really working well.”

Paul states he would like to look for a higher node from 3300-3400 GPS: “Next stop is with the Applied Ballistics LLC mobile labratory and radar testing with a PDM for the Nationals.” Paul cautions: “I encourage everyone to start low and work up. Every chamber, barrel, and components are a little different.”

ELR light class Paul Phillips Global Precision

During initial testing, Paul’s 33XC put three shots in 0.27″ at 100. Then, at 500 yards, the rifle produced a 3-shot group around 1/3-MOA with just 1.22 inches of vertical. That’s pretty impressive for early testing. Paul will also be trying some Berger bullets soon. When he determines the most accurate load, Phillips will stretch the rifle’s legs, shooting out to 2500 yards and beyond.

Quote: “The Cutting Edge Bullets are not the highest BC but they are very stable and consistent at ELR (sub-sonic) ranges and that’s the most important factor in finding the best ELR bullet. I actually test all my bullets at sub-sonic speeds to make sure they are consistent and stable. Finding a good load at 500 yards is just the first part. The real test is shooting them at sub-sonic speeds and see how consistently they group. This is what gives you the highest percentage to impact at 2 miles and beyond.”

ELR light class Paul Phillips Global Precision
CLICK Image for full-screen version.

This rifle features a BAT action mated to a 34″ Bartlein barrel chambered for David Tubb’s new 33XC cartridge. Paul Phillips is currently running Cutting Edge 275gr Lazer solid bullets. Paul notes: “I also have a .338 Lapua Magnum barrel and 300gr Berger bullets for the restricted class in France.” Paul gave special thanks to Alex Wheeler for doing the metal work and Alex Sitman for doing the bedding.

Rifle Component List
Action: BAT Machine CTH dual-port action
Trigger: Bullet Central Bix’N Andy
Barrel: Bartlein 1:8″-twist barrel (34″)
Chambering: 33XC for Peterson brass
Stock: McMillan A6 Super Mag, Bedding Alex Sitman
Scope: Nightforce Optics 7-35x56mm F1 ATACR.
Bipod: Duplin Rifles

33XC Load Components
Cartridge Brass: 33XC by Peterson Cartridge
Bullets: Cutting Edge 275gr Lazer Bullets
Powder: Vihtavuori

ELR light class Paul Phillips Global Precision

Paul Phillips notes: “Alex Sitman has been bedding rifles stocks for most of his life. I believe that [bedding] is a very important … to keep consistent accuracy and repeatable zeros after traveling all over the globe.”

ELR light class Paul Phillips Global Precision

Even with the TacomHQ Charlie Tarac scope prism in place, the rifle makes the 25-pound weight limit with Duplin Rifles bipod. Paul says: “I love it when a plan comes together!! I’m under by 2 ounces!”

About the 33XC (eXtra Capacity) Cartridge
David Tubb invented the 33XC cartridge because he thought the CheyTac cases were too much trouble — requiring a larger action, oversize presses, and ultra-expensive dies. The 33XC was designed to fit .338 Lapua Magnum-size actions and use normal reloading presses.

The 33XC (eXtra Capacity) has 137.5 grains of H2O capacity with over 125 grains of usable powder capacity while leaving the 0.393″ neck unfilled for bullet seating.

The 33XC has a .338 Lapua Magnum lineage. Think of it as a better, 35°-shoulder .338 LM. David explains: “The 33XC uses standard reloading dies along with a 7/8″ x 14 TPI reloading press. There is no fire-forming — all case ‘improving’ has already been done with a production case that has 20 grains more powder capacity, 35-degree shoulder, and longer neck compared to a .338 Lapua Magnum. This puts the various .338 Lapua wildcats and the Rem Ultra Mag Improved into the ‘also ran’ category. They simply can’t compete with the velocities attainable with the 33XC.”

ELR light class Paul Phillips Global Precision

The 33XC is based off of a .580″ bolt head. Tubb states that “A fired case will extract with little effort when using a properly-polished chamber with a maximum powder charge after resizing with the Superior Shooting Systems FL sizing die.” Tubb’s 33XC die reaches the case head which is important for accuracy. Peterson Cartridge produces the 33XC brass for Superior Shooting Systems. This high-quality brass costs $115 for 50 cases (or $2.30 per case), and can be purchased directly from Superior Shooting Systems.

ELR light class Paul Phillips Global Precision

Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Competition, Gunsmithing, New Product 1 Comment »
July 28th, 2019

Jumbo $275.00 Magazine for .375 EnABELR Cartridge

.375 cheytac .408 cheytac EnABLER Applied Ballistics Bryan Litz Cadex defense

.375 cheytac .408 cheytac EnABLER Applied Ballistics Bryan Litz Cadex defenseThe .375 EnABELR cartridge was developed to offer magazine feeding capabilities with the highest-BC solid bullets available. Applied Ballistics observes: “The best magazine is one that retains the cartridge shoulder and doesn’t allow the tip of the bullet to impact the front of the magazine during recoil.” Cadex Defense has designed magazines that fit Cadex’s bottom metal and chassis for the EnABELR line of cartridges which allows for maximum magazine fed performance. These mags are beautifully made, but they will be very EXPENSIVE. Expect to pay about $275 per magazine — what the Cadex 375/408 CheyTac magazine currently costs (Product Code: MAG4300, USD $273.95).

Q: Is this different than Cadex’s regular CheyTac magazine?

A: Mitchell Fitzpatrick of Applied Ballistics Weapons Division replied: “Yes, the ribs that retain the shoulder are moved back to hold the case back and prevent the bullet tip from hitting the front of the magazine. We had been playing with inserts welded into place, which worked great, but dedicated mags directly from Cadex was the ultimate goal.”

.375 cheytac .408 cheytac EnABLER Applied Ballistics Bryan Litz Cadex defense
Here is Mitchell Fitzpatrick, shooting the .375 EnABELR in an ELR Competition.

“CADEX and Applied Ballistics. Two companies taking ELR seriously and trying to get that last 1-2% of performance out of the system. Keep up the good work!” — Mark N.

The .375 EnABELR Cartridge — Big and Fast

The .375 EnABELR cartridge is slightly shorter than a .375 CheyTac so it allows the round to mag-feed. Applied Ballistics is currently using brass made by Peterson. The .375 EnABELR has achieved impressive velocities — 2990 FPS — with prototype Berger 379-grain solid bullets fired from a 1:7″-twist 30″ barrel. Applied Ballistics may also test 1:8″-twist and 1:9″-twist barrels. READ Bullet Testing Report.

Berger 379 grain 379gr solid bullet .375 caliber enabler

The .375 EnABELR cartridge was designed to offer .375 CheyTac performance in a slightly shorter package: “The problem with the .375 CheyTac is that, when loaded with the highest performance .375 caliber bullets (379-407 gr Berger Solids, and the 400-425 grain Cutting Edge Lazers) the round is not magazine feed-able in any action that’s sized for CheyTac cartridges.

Berger 379 grain 379gr solid bullet .375 caliber enabler

“Knowing the .375 CheyTac produced substantial performance, and that it was just too long for magazine feeding, made it easy to converge on a design for the .375 EnABELR. We just had to make the case short enough to achieve magazine length with the desired bullets, while adding a little more diameter to keep the case capacity similar to the .375 CheyTac. The resulting basic shape is quite similar in proportions to the successful .338 Norma Magnum Cartridge which, interestingly, was selected as the cartridge for General Dynamics Lightweight Medium Machine Gun (LWMMG).”

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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.

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July 5th, 2019

ELR on a Budget — Shooting One Mile with .338 LM Savage

Savage BA110 .338 Lapua magnum 1 mile

After the 2019 King of 2 Miles competition last weekend, some readers asked whether it’s possible to shoot Extreme Long Range with a regular factory rifle — a rig that costs thousandths less than the full custom 40-lb ELR beasts used by top KO2M teams. The answer is a definite yes. Here’s a story from Forum member Mark Dalzell. A few seasons back, Mark showed what can be done with a factory Savage 110 BA at extreme long range — 1760 yards (one mile). Mark did a great job with the video, which features multiple camera views so you can see the shooter and the target at the same time. Enjoy!

This video by Mark Dalzell demonstrates the long-range capabilities of the Savage 110 BA chambered in .338 Lapua Magnum. Mark took his “BadAss” rig out to the southwest Nevada desert just north of Jean Dry Lakes. He placed a 2’x3′ target way, way out there — a full mile (1760 yards) away. At that range, flight time to target was 3.75 seconds! Sighting with a Nightforce 5-22x50mm NXS scope, Mark needed a few shots to get on target, but eventually made multiple hits, using 67 MOA of elevation and 2.25 MOA left windage. You can view the hits starting at 1:56 time-mark on the video. (Mark had a second camera set up closer to the target — this displays frame in frame in the video, and if you watch carefully you can see the strikes.) The ammo was HSM 250gr HPBT match with a 3.600″ COAL. The shooting was done at 8:13 in the morning, with clear conditions, very light winds. Temp was 57°, humidity 24.5, Density Altitude 3666. Video soundtrack is La Grange by ZZ Top.

PLAY BUTTON
LISTEN TO MARK TALK about One Mile Shooting:
CLICK Play Button to hear Mark Dalzell TALK about his .338 LM Savage 110 BA and how he scored hits at 1760 yards.

Good Shooting Mark. That’s darn good for a factory rifle. You also had the elevation dialed in real close before the firing started! That shows a good knowledge of your ammo’s long-range ballistics. We also noticed how effective that muzzle brake was. Recoil looked about the same as an un-braked .308 Win.

.338 LM Lapua Magnum cartridge diagram

If you thought Mark’s 1760-yard shooting was impressive, Mark has produced another video that shows a session at even greater distances — out to 2300 yards. Watch Mark Dalzell Shoot at 2300 Yards.

Mark Dalzell 1760 yards mile shooting video Nevada Accurateshooter

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July 2nd, 2019

Paul Phillips Crowned 2019 King of 2 Miles in New Mexico

Ko2m king two miles raton whittington center New Mexico Paul Phillips McMillan Litz ELR
Hail the King — Paul Phillips wears crown as the new 2019 King of Two Miles.

Paul Phillips, Captain of Team Global Precision Group (GPG), is the 2019 King of 2 Miles. Hail the new King! Paul won the event with a score of 48350, beating runner-up Robert Brantley who scored 46306. Fellow GPG shooter and 2017 K02M winner Derek Rodgers finished third with 38747. Phillips secured his K02M crown with good shooting in Raton, NM on both Day 1 and Day 2. On the final day, Paul had two hits at 2728 yards and one at 3166 yards. No competitor scored more than one hit at 3166 yards (1.799 miles), and no competitor scored even a single hit at the farthest target, placed at 3525 yards (2.0028 miles). So the actual 2-Mile target was never hit during the event.

Ko2m king two miles raton whittington center New Mexico Paul Phillips McMillan Litz ELR
Here are the target locations and yardages for K02M Day 2 Finals.

Ko2m king two miles raton whittington center New Mexico Paul Phillips McMillan Litz ELR
Team GPG members Derek Rodgers, Paul Phillips (center), and Mark Lonsdale with KO2M-winning rifle, K02M Trophy, $5000 Winner’s Prize from McMillan, and Nightforce Certificate.

Team Global Precision Dominates with Three of Top Four Places
Team Global Precision Group was top team overall with Paul Phillips in First Place, Derek Rodgers in Third, and Mark Lonsdale in Fourth. Team GPG, in its first world-level match together, dominated the field of 80 of the best ELR shooters in the world. First, Third, and Fourth — that’s mighty impressive gentlemen!

2019 KO2M Top 20 Results. Click on the table to see full-screen version:
Ko2m king two miles raton whittington center New Mexico Paul Phillips McMillan Litz ELR

Paul Phillips, who recently competed in the European K02M match in France, gave credit to his sponsors and team-mates: “Team GPG is honored to be … King of 2 Mile Champions. I’ve always wondered what it would feel like to be carried around on the King chair. I am humbled to be added to the list of great shooters that have been crowned before me.”

Ko2m king two miles raton whittington center New Mexico Paul Phillips McMillan Litz ELR

Paul added: “Big shout-out to all our sponsors, the match organizers, Eduardo, FCSA, and the volunteers who work so hard to make these ELR matches a major success. We’ll definitely be back in 2020!”

“Paul Phillips your win in this match is yet another example of the value of hard work paying off. I can honestly say that I don’t know anyone who works harder at ELR competition and promotion than you do. You deserve this win!” — Bryan Litz, Applied Ballistics

Equipment List for .416 Barrett 2019 KO2M-Winning Rifle

Paul’s massive KO2M rig features a BAT EX .50-Cal action with a 38″ Bartlein 1:9″-twist 5R barrel chambered for the standard .416 Barrett cartridge. The stock is a McMillan Beast One model. To tame recoil, Paul runs a T5 Terminator muzzle brake. The scope is a Nightforce 7-35x56mm ATACR F1 with MOAR Reticle. Up front is a Phoenix Precision Bipod, with an Edgewood Mini-Gator Bag in the rear. Paul is running a Bix’N Andy Comp Trigger with a 4-ounce, single-stage pull.

The complete rifle weighs 40 pounds. Bartlein did the .416 Barrett chambering using a Dave Manson reamer. Alex Sitman bedded the action in the McMillan stock as he did for the other GPG rifles. In fact, all three Team GPG rifles are essentially identical.

Load Details: Standard .416 Barrett cartridge, running .416 Caliber 550gr solid Cutting Edge Bullets at 3000 fps. The powder is Vihtavuori 20N29 ignited by RWS .50 Caliber primers. The cartridge brass is Barrett brand, produced by RUAG.

Support Gear: Ballistics are calculated with Applied Ballistics Software using velocity data from a LabRadar chronograph. Swarovski provided Team GPG with two big BTX 95 binocular spotting scopes. Phillips says “these BTX 95s really help us follow trace, spot impacts, and get on target quickly.”

Ko2m king two miles raton whittington center New Mexico Paul Phillips McMillan Litz ELR
Here are Team Applied Ballistics competitors at the 2019 KO2M event in Raton, NM. Applied Ballistics’ Mitchell Fitzpatrick posted: “[There were] some unique challenges this year, but I managed to finish in 5th place running a sub-25 pound rifle. That’s the result of a lot of our ESSO research.”

$5000 KO2M Winner’s Prize from McMillan Fiberglass Stocks

Ko2m king two miles raton whittington center New Mexico Paul Phillips McMillan Litz ELR

McMillan Fiberglass Stocks is a strong supporter of the shooting sports. Here Kelly McMillan presents Paul Phillips with a $5,000 check from McMillan Fiberglass Stocks for winning the 2019 King of 2 Mile while shooting a McMillan stock. Teammates Derek Rodgers and Mark Lonsdale also used McMillan stocks in the 2019 K02M Finals. Along with the McMillan check, Paul Phillips received $5000 from Nightforce Optics, and $1200 from Cutting Edge Bullets. Paul told us he will divide all the winnings with his team-mates because: “I won with my team — we won together.”

Ko2m king two miles raton whittington center New Mexico Paul Phillips Derek Love Team Manners Litz ELR
Derek Love competed with Team Manners Composite Stocks and took many photos. You’ll find some great 2019 K02M images on Derek’s Facebook Page.

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June 15th, 2019

Go Big This Summer — As in Fifty Caliber Big

50 BMG cartridge FCSA

34th Annual Fifty Caliber Championship Coming Soon
The 34th Annual Fifty Caliber Shooters Association (FCSA) 1000/600 Yard World Championship will be held July 4, 5 and 6, 2019 at the Whittington Center in Raton, New Mexico, a beautiful facility. The FCSA Championship takes place right after the 2019 King of 2 Miles event, running June 29 – July 1, 2019.


Match Information | Match Registration | Photo Gallery

Fifty Caliber shooter association fcsa national championship raton whittington NM new mexico
Looking downrange at the 1000-yard line. Note the fan and air hose for cooling the barrel.


Competitor’s POV perspective from a FCSA Match. Note the mirage.

By James Patterson
This article first appeared in Sinclair International’s Reloading Press Blog

For a number of years I drooled over every .50 BMG caliber rifle that I came across, I read every article I could find and determined that ‘Someday’ I was going to have one. Well I finally took the plunge and in 2002 I purchased my first ‘Big 50’. Almost immediately I joined the Fifty Caliber Shooters Association (FCSA) and I have since come to immensely enjoy shooting this challenging cartridge and associating with some of the best people on earth.

Dierks 50 BMG Light Class

FCSA Founded in 1985
FCSA Fifty Caliber ShootersThe FCSA, started in 1985, is an international organization with members in 22 countries. Headquartered in Monroe, Utah, the FCSA has a membership of approximately 4000. While the FCSA provides a service to military and law enforcement with research and instruction as well as an active liaison in both communities, the primary charter of the FCSA is the promotion of the sporting use of the 50 BMG cartridge and its wildcat derivatives. It has been the FCSA and its members who have lead the way in refining .50-caliber cartridges, rifles, and 1000-yard plus shooting know-how. Members enjoy a quarterly magazine, a suppliers directory, an active website with great photo galleries, and access to literally the best repository of 50 BMG information on the planet. If you are interested in Mr. John Browning’s big 50, you should seriously consider joining the FCSA.

Fifty Caliber shooter association fcsa national championship raton whittington NM new mexico
This interesting .50 Cal rig features a liquid-cooled barrel and unusual scope mounting arrangement.

While all aspects of the 50 BMG are promoted by the FCSA, the primary sport is 1000-yard competition. In 2010, there were 16 separate official matches scheduled across the USA, and many more ‘fun-shoots’. This sport is an incredible mix of the science, skill, and art of extreme long range accuracy. I had been actively shooting rifles and hunting for well over 40 years and had always considered myself a “rifle man”. But I had no idea of the learning curve that [faced me] when I first joined the FCSA.

FCSA 50-caliber shooting association

Historically, 1000-yard shooting has been primarily a benchrest activity but in the past several years we have seen a tremendous interest in ‘Hunter Class’ competition; this is shot prone using a bipod. This form of long range match shooting is excellent preparation for long range hunting. The required skill set [for ultra-long-range hunting] is guaranteed to humble even the most experienced rifleman.

FCSA 50 caliber Fifty Cal world championships

Cost of Big-Bore Shooting
Is owning and shooting a 50 BMG caliber rifle expensive? Relatively speaking yes, but one must put it into perspective. Rifles may run from $2500 to $8000, maybe even more for a top of the line custom rifle. A premium long-range scope will set you back $1800 to $3500. And while excellent .50 BMG commercial ammo is available, it runs $5 to $6 per round! Most serious shooters start reloading for the rifle as soon as practical, not only for the economics of reloading but also for the ability to fine tune custom ammo for their specific rifle. It’s a very rare match that is won shooting commercial ammo.

BAT 50 BMG Action

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