March 3rd, 2019

How Rimfire Ammo is Made — Federal and CCI Videos Show All

22 .22 Plinkster Youtube Video CCI Speer Rimfire Ammo Ammunition plant Lewiston Idaho

CCI and Federal Premium are both brands of Vista Outdoor. Most CCI rimfire is produced in Idaho, while other Federal-branded rimfire ammo is produced in Federal’s Anoka, Minnesota facilities. Here we feature videos from both CCI and Federal ammo plants. Watch and learn how rimfire ammo is made.

Field & Stream Tours Federal Ammo Plant in Minnesota
A reporter for Field & Stream recently got a chance to tour the Federal ammunition production facility in Anoka, Minnesota. This large plant produces both rimfire and centerfire ammunition. While touring the plant, the reporter was allowed to capture video showing the creation of .22 LR rounds from start to finish. This is a fascinating video, well worth watching.

Note to Viewers — After Starting Video, Click Speaker Icon to HEAR audio!

This revealing video shows all phases of .22 LR ammo production including cupping, drawing, annealing, washing, drying, head-stamping, priming, powder charging, bullet seating, crimping, waxing, inspection, and final packaging. We recommend you watch the video from start to finish. You’ll definitely learn some new things about rimfire ammo.

.22 LR Ammo Production in Idaho
Back in 2016, YouTuber 22Plinkster was able to tour the CCI Ammo plant in Lewiston, Idado. Here is the rimfire production video he produced.

The Manufacturing Process for .22 LR Rimfire Ammunition
Shooting Sports USA explains: “Rimfire cartridge cases are the oldest self-contained cartridge in existence, having been in continuous production since the mid-1850s. Rimfire cases are drawn from a thin piece of brass and formed with a hollow rim. A priming compound is then forced into the case using centrifugal force, where it is charged with powder and a bullet is seated in the mouth of the case. The case is then crimped around the bullet to ensure sufficient push and pull when the round is fired. When the firing pin strikes the thin brass rim of the case, the hollow rim is crushed and the primer is ignited.” Source: SSUSA.org 9/2/2017.

.22 LR ammunition photo
Photo courtesy BulkAmmo.com.

Permalink - Videos, Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Tech Tip 4 Comments »
July 5th, 2018

Input Key Variables Correctly for Ballistics Apps

Ballistic AE Moble App Ballistics Program solver JBM iphone, iPod, iPad

“Garbage In, Garbage Out.” You have to input key variables with precision if you want your Ballistics Apps to deliver reliable long-range trajectories. So says Tom Beckstrand, Field Editor for Guns & Ammo magazine. A former U.S. Army Special Forces Officer, and avid long-range competitor, Beckstrand knows the importance of using your ballistic calculator correctly. Here are his tips on how to achieve the best results using Ballistics Calculators.

Key Variables: Muzzle Velocity, Ballistic Coefficient, Sight Height

“The most important inputs to make any ballistic calculator work correctly are muzzle velocity, ballistic coefficient, and sight height,” says Beckstrand.

Ascertain Accurate Muzzle Velocity with a Good Chronograph
“Cheap chronographs will not give an accurate muzzle velocity, so the serious shooter needs to spend the money on a quality chrono.” When you chronograph, make sure to measure the distance from the muzzle to the chrono unit. That input is also important to your Ballistic calculations.

Use Reliable G1 and G7 Ballistic Coefficients
Beckstrand added, “Ballistic Coefficients are available from ammunition and bullet manufacturers, and most of these coefficients the manufacturers provide are really quite accurate.” Ballistic Coefficient or BC, is a number that reflects how well a bullet cuts through the air. The higher the BC, the less the bullet is affected by air drag.

Measure Sight Height Correctly Using Calipers
Beckstrand has found that many shooters aren’t inputting sight height or they are guessing at the correct height. As target distance increases, just a half-inch of sight height inaccuracy can mean several inches up or down.

“Sight height is the input most often overlooked and is usually the source of greatest error. I think a lot of shooters, especially those new to long-range shooting, simply don’t understand the importance of this input.”

Sight height is the distance from the centerline of the scope to the centerline of the bore. Some shooters, Beckstrand believes, just “eye it up” and estimate the distance. “Really, you should use a set of calipers to measure the sight height distance … within 0.1 inch”.

Get Leading Ballistics App for iOS Devices

Ballistic AE Moble App Ballistics Program solver JBM iphone, iPod, iPad

Ballistic AE Moble App Ballistics Program solver JBM iphone, iPod, iPadNeed a top-notch Ballistics App for your iPhone, iPad, or iPod? Start with Ballistic AE, the number 1 (i.e. most installed) App for iOS systems. Ballistics AE (Advanced Edition) is the most popular iOS ballistics program for many good reasons. Full-featured and easy to use, Ballistics AE has been refined over many years, and it supplies rock-solid solutions derived from JBM Ballistics solver (created by James B. Millard). Unlike some other Apps, Ballistics AE is STABLE on iPhones (with various OS levels). What’s cool is that Ballistics AE is now on sale for $12.99.

We’ve used the Ballistic AE program on an iPhone 5S, iPhone 6, and iPad, and it performed well. Here are some of the features we liked:

  • 1. Mirrors output from online version of JBM Ballistics we often use for initial calculations.
  • 2. Controls are simple to use and (mostly) intuitive.
  • 3. Handy comparison feature lets you compare ballistics for different projectiles side by side.
  • 4. Advanced Wind Kit allows you to account for complex wind situations.
  • 5. Projectile and BC Databases are very comprehensive.
  • 6. Software is regularly updated to match Apple OS changes.

Ballistic-AE App for iPhone & iPod, $12.99 | Ballistic-AE App for iPad, $12.99

Ballistic AE Moble App Ballistics Program solver JBM iphone, iPod, iPad

This Video Explains How to Set Up and Use Ballistic AE:

Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Gear Review, Tech Tip 6 Comments »
July 17th, 2013

Ruger Guide Gun Named Field & Stream ‘Best of the Best’

The Ruger® Guide Gun has been awarded a 2013 “Best of the Best” Award from Field & Stream magazine. The current Ruger Guide Gun combines features of several of Ruger’s most popular rifles in a versatile, general-purpose hunting rifle.

Ruger Guide Gun Safari iron sights

The Guide Gun features a stainless action and barrel, removable muzzle brake, safari-style iron sights, adjustable length-of-pull (with three 1/2″ spacers), barrel band sling swivel, and a Green Mountain laminated wood stock. The new Ruger Guide Gun is available in .30-06 Spr, .300 Win Mag, .338 Win Mag, .300 RCM, .338 RCM, and .375 Ruger. A left-handed configuration is available in .375 Ruger.

Ruger Guide Gun Safari iron sights

Ruger Guide Gun Safari iron sightsRemovable Muzzle Brake/Weight
The Ruger Guide Gun includes a removable, radial-port muzzle brake that significantly reduces felt recoil. If you don’t need the brake, it may be replaced by a dynamically-matched muzzle weight, provided as part of the system. Ruger claims that: “switching between the brake and the weight will not change the bullet’s point of impact. The included thread protector may be used if neither the brake nor the weight is desired.”

Video Explains Ruger Guide Gun Features

The Ruger Guide Gun has Mauser-type controlled feeding (with claw extractor), three-position safety, and Ruger scope rings that install on the integral mounts. All Ruger Guide Guns feature windage adjustable shallow “V” notch rear sights and large white bead front sights for instant sight alignment.

Ruger Guide Gun Safari iron sights

Guide Gun May Be Rugged and Versatile, but Accuracy is Disappointing
The Guide Gun tested by Field & Stream had a heavy trigger and mediocre accuracy, but the Magazine’s editors still praised its hunting capabilities: “On our .375 Ruger test rifle, the trigger broke at 4 pounds, 8 ounces with a very slight creep. The mechanism is an open design that will not collect water or debris. Our groups averaged 1.40 inch at 100 yards, fine for a rifle of this type. The removable muzzle brake does a good job of suppressing recoil, but if you don’t care for the noise it can be removed and replaced with an unported dummy brake of identical weight that allows you to keep your zero.”

Editor’s Comment: Field & Stream may be satisfied with a one-and-a-half MOA rifle for hunting purposes, but frankly, we expect better accuracy from a gun with an $1199.00 MSRP. Is this really “Best of the Best”? At that price, we don’t think so. The Guide Gun does have some interesting features, but you’ll pay a premium for that trick muzzle brake and the safari sights.

Permalink Hunting/Varminting, News 12 Comments »
September 14th, 2012

Alliant Black MZ Wins Field & Stream ‘Best of the Best’ Award

Black MZ Powder AlliantBlack Powder Cartridge Rifles (BPCR) typically fire cartridges with large capacity — 70 grains or more of the ‘holy black’. For a variety of reasons, BPCR shooters may want to use a black powder substitute when training, hunting, or when competing in matches that allow substitutes. The problem with most smokeless propellants is that they are designed to operate at much higher pressure levels and they don’t fill the case well when loaded to black powder pressure levels. (There are some exceptions).

Allian Black MZ Wins Field & Stream Award
Alliant Powder has developed a new black powder substitute that works well in black powder cartridge rifles and in muzzle-loaders. Alliant’s new Black MZ is an innovative, non-corrosive black powder substitute that resists moisture and reduces cleaning time.

Alliant claims that Black MZ “burns cleaner for less residue and easier cleaning” and that Black MZ can deliver “better velocities at lower pressures.” In fact, Black MZ performs so well that it was recently awarded Field & Stream’s “Best of the Best” award in its product category.

BPCRField & Stream reports: “[Black MZ] performed so well… that the test team was able to fire muzzleloaders repeatedly without any cleaning. And when a patch was run through the barrel, there was far less fouling than is normally seen. The loose grains also can be packed tightly, producing great energy results while maintaining low barrel pressure.” Alliant states that: “Moisture resistant and virtually non-corrosive, Black MZ replicates black powder performance without the ignition headaches and cleaning hassles common to traditional black powder use.”

Alliant Brand Director Rick Stoeckel declares: “We are excited to win the Best of the Best from Field & Stream. We strive to provide the best products for our consumers, and this recognition reaffirms the effectiveness of Black MZ” [for both muzzle-loaders and Black Powder Cartridge Rifles].

Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo, New Product 4 Comments »