October 19th, 2018

National Rifle League Championship This Weekend in Oregon

National Rifle League NRL Vale Oregon Idaho Precision Rifle Shotoers of Idaho PRSID

It the world of practical/tactical competition there are now two major sponsoring organizations — the Precision Rifle Series (PRS) and the National Rifle League (NRL). The PRS has the most matches (and greater name recognition), but the NRL is definitely on the rise with some great events at sites around the country. This weekend, October 19th-21st, the NRL conducts its 2018 NRL National Championship at the Snake River Sportsman Range in Vale, Oregon. The 2018 NRL Championship will be hosted by the Precision Rifle Shooters of Idaho (PRSID).

National Rifle League NRL Vale Oregon Idaho Precision Rifle Shotoers of Idaho PRSID

This is the final 2-day, National-level match of the NRL’s second season. The event will feature the season’s Top Competitors, plus Ladies, “Young Guns”, and special invitees. NRL President Travis Ishida told us: “The NRL is excited to have the opportunity to bring professional-level events to shooters across the nation. Our Championship is a culmination of a season’s hard work from everyone involved to find out who the best precision rifle competitor in the nation is. This match is going to be epic!”

National Rifle League NRL Vale Oregon Idaho Precision Rifle Shotoers of Idaho PRSID

CLICK HERE for NRL 2018 Championship Event Information »

NRL 2017 Championship Teaser Reel

NRL New Mexico NMLRS Event

NRL Mile-High Shoot-Out

2018 NRL Test The Best Oktoberfest Championship

Match Directors: Nate Lauerman / Jack Wilson
Event Cost: $275.00
Dates: October 19, 20, 21 (2018)
Round Count: 200 plus extra for sight-in/zero
Location: Snake River Sportsman range in Vale, Oregon
3600 Lytle Blvd, Vale, OR 97918

Precision Rifle Shooters of Idaho hosts the 2018 NRL Test the Best Oktoberfest Championship match. This match will determine the 2018 NRL Champion. Competitors who competed in the 2018 NRL season and received qualifying scores are invited to this match.

The closest airport is Boise, Idaho, 77 miles to the Southeast. Participants can stay at the Clarion Hotel in Ontario, Oregon, 20 miles from the Championship venue, the Snake River Sportsman Range. The Clarion offers discounted rates for NRL competitors.

Permalink Competition, News No Comments »
September 7th, 2016

PRS Action at Snake River Sportsmen Range in Oregon

Idaho Shootout Snake River Sportsmen PRS

Clear skies and calm winds welcomed 85 of the nation’s best Precision Rifle Series (PRS) shooters to the PRSID Shootout at the Snake River Sportsmen range in Vale, Oregon. Held on August 27-28, this sold-out event was hosted by the Precision Rifle Shooters of Idaho (PRSID). Finishing first was Jake Vibbert of Washington state with a 163.500 score, followed by Oregonian Jon Pynch with 156.500. In third place was Ben Cleland of Georgia with 152.500.

Over the two-day event, competitors shot 20 challenging stages such as ‘MGM Spin Cycle’, ‘Run through the Rocks’, and ‘MGM Spinner Chicken Dinner’. The course of fire featured many reactive targets. The “instant feedback” offered by reactive targets is a major “fun factor” contributing to the rapid growth of PRS shooting. Shooters engaged MGM targets on 19 of the 20 stages at distances from 300 yards to 1160 yards with MGM Flash Targets on all engagements past 300 yards. The Flash Target Systems made impacts easy to see for both shooters and spotters.

Idaho Shootout Snake River Sportsmen PRS

Light React LED Hit Sensors were also used to help confirm hits on the two long-range stages with engagements out to 1160 yards. In the past couple of years the PRS has emerged as a very popular competitive shooting discipline. PRS specializes in tactical-style target shooting “on the clock” with challenging scenarios and targets placed at distances out to 1200 yards. More typical, however, are PRS stages with targets placed from 200 to 500 yards.

Event organizers commented afterward: “A big thanks to Travis Gibson and MGM Targets for backing our club and for making targets that show clear impacts, it made it easy on the spotters. [The] Max light react system ran flawlessly on the long range in combination with MGM flashers. There was never any guessing whether you had an impact or not.”

Permalink Competition, Tactical 1 Comment »
June 15th, 2016

Father and Son Win Big at 2016 MGM Ironman Event

Ironman MGM Idaho 2012

The 20th Annual MGM Ironman Match was held in Parma, Idaho earlier this month. Over 250 shooters vied for honors at this ultra-challenging event. The “OLHOT” (Open, Limited, Heavy Optics, and Trooper) classes competed June 5-7, while a Scoped Tactical Match followed June 9-11. Present were top pros, privateers, juniors, ladies, plus elite military and LEO teams. This very demanding 3-Gun event features ten tough, high-round count stages, including a signature zip-line descent from a tower. Without question, the MGM Ironman is one of the toughest shooting matches on the planet.

Watch POV view of the Zipline Stage at 2016 MGM Ironman:

Father and Son Duo Dominates 2016 Event
This year’s OLHOT match was definitely a “family affair” for the Gibson clan. In the Trooper Division, 17-year-old Wyatt Gibson won convincingly, finishing 138 points ahead of the next-best shooter. Meanwhile Wyatt’s father Travis Gibson won the Open Division. In true ‘Like father, like son’ fashion, Travis dominated the Open field, finishing 121 points ahead of his closest Open-class competitor.

2016 Iron Man MGM idaho 3-gun match

This year’s aptly-named Ironman was particularly tough with triple-digit temps and strong winds. Over the course of three grueling days, competitors completed ten tough stages, shooting in excess of 1100 rounds per shooter over the course of the match. EVERY stage required the use of ALL three guns with 100 or more rounds. The average time spent shooting on each stage was about seven minutes. The Ironman is long, intense, and you shoot till you drop! Mike Gibson, the founder of MGM Targets, and the “inventor” of the Ironman, has said: “This match isn’t for weenies or crybabies”.

The week-long Ironman event is broken into two, 3-day sessions, with five different divisions. The OLHOT (Open, Limited, Heavy Optics, and Trooper) sessions ran June 5-7. During the second segment, held June 9-11, 120 Scoped Tactical shooters took on the same demanding course.

2016 Iron Man MGM idaho 3-gun match

Ironman MGM Idaho 2012MGM Ironman Has Unique Stage Designs
The MGM Ironman is an intense test of both shooter and equipment. Participants shoot a variety of classes and various scenarios including shooting from the back of a moving vehicle, from a 20-foot tower, while driving a golf cart, and while carrying a dummy.

Of course there are plenty of MGM-made reactive targets (photo right). The MGM Ironman regularly offers unique and demanding stages including firing a pistol from a zip line, and plunging down a steep slide from a 30 foot tower, rifle in hand. One stage involves carrying an 80-lb dummy over 100 feet and lifting it to the top of a six-foot platform before climbing it to engage rifle targets at distance. With creative and challenging stage designs and high round counts, he Ironman is truly a unique match.

Ironman MGM Idaho 2012

Here is a video from the 2010 MGM Ironman. It shows many of the multi-gun stages, including the Zipline stage, filmed from multiple camera angles.

Permalink Competition, Tactical No Comments »
November 13th, 2014

Nice Compact 22BR Varminter from Idaho’s ‘Boltfluter’

Winter storms are raging in many areas of the country right now, and we know that many of our readers are holed up inside. To help delay the onset of “cabin fever”, we’re offering some nice outdoor photos from Forum member Paul Fakenbridge (aka “Boltfluter”) up in Idaho.

22BR Varmint Rifle Pro-Precision Rifles Boltfulter

One of Fakenbridge’s favorite rifles is a suppressed 22BR varminter with a 22″ barrel. All-up weight is 12 lbs. including bipod and suppressor. He uses this compact rifle on varmint excursions up in Idaho. Paul’s 22BR features a Rem short action in an H&S Precision PSS stock. The scope is a Leupold 12x40mm FX-3 (fixed power) in Warne Q/R rings. Paul notes: “In my .22BR the 75gr A-Maxes travel right at 3000 fps (with a 22″ barrel). My ‘go-to’ powder is IMR 8208 XBR with CCI 450 primers.” For those considering a build with a similar cartridge, Paul adds: “I think you will be pleasantly surprised.”

22BR Varmint Rifle Pro-Precision Rifles Boltfulter

When he’s not hunting varmints, Boltfluter operates Pro-Precision Rifles, LLC which offers bolt fluting, bolt finishing, and barrel fluting (including AR15 barrels). Boltfluter also sells and installs bolt knobs and muzzle brakes. Shown below are two helical-fluted bolts with custom-machined bolt knobs. Very nice work by one of our Forum members…

fluted helical Pro-Precision Rifles Boltfulter

Permalink Gunsmithing, Hunting/Varminting 3 Comments »
June 14th, 2014

BAT Machine Launches Updated, Full-Featured Website

BAT Machine Actions Receivers Idaho

BAT Machine recently launched a completely updated and upgraded website at www.batmachine.com. The new website is much easier to navigate, and the site features more and better photos.

BAT Machine Actions Receivers Idaho

Click on the Actions Pull-Down Menu for detailed descriptions of all the action types with zoomable images. There is also a helpful Action Selection Guide that can help you chose the right configuration for your next rifle build. And BAT fans can now purchase BAT rings, tools, parts, and logo gear through a secure BAT online store.

BAT Machine Actions Receivers Idaho

Helpful “How-To” Maintenance Videos from BAT
BAT’s revamped website features an impressive new Video Archive. There you’ll find many informative videos about bolts, ejectors, action maintenance, and other technical matters. Here are two examples:

How to Grease and Maintain Your BAT Action and Bolt:

How to Remove (and Re-Install) Firing Pin Assembly:

More Helpful Information on the New BAT Website
One thing that people might easily miss is the large spreadsheet that details the specs of all BAT Machine actions. To download that .xlsx spreadsheet to your hard drive, Right Click (and “Save As”) this link: ACTION CONFIGURATION PART LIST. After opening the spreadsheet, on the “ACTION” worksheet, you’ll find action model, body shape, weight, bolt faces available, and tenon spec among several other items. Note that there are two worksheet tabs (look down at the bottom left). Use these spreadsheet tabs to switch between “Action” and “Accessories”.

Also, on the BAT website FAQ page, you’ll find prints for barrel tenon machining, firing pin sizes, torque specs, and tons of other very helpful info. This is well worth a look. — ELR Researcher.

Story Tip from Boyd Allen and EdLongrange. We welcome reader submissions.
Permalink - Videos, News 4 Comments »
January 31st, 2014

Idaho Company Produces Advanced Ammo-Loading Machines

Looking to start a new enterprise? How about entering a field where consumer demand greatly exceeds supply right now — the ammunition business. If you have $38,000 or so you can get your own automated ammo-making machine from Ammo Load Worldwide, Inc., an American-run business located in Lewiston, Idaho. There’s also an 11-station, computer-controlled “Mark L” rifle ammo machine that’s a bit pricier — $77,000 with accessories. Sure that’s a tad more expensive than a Dillon XL650, but with a Mark L you can produce three thousand .223 Rem rounds per hour with the push of a button.

Ammo Loader Idaho Ammunition machine

Watch Ammo-Loading Machines in Action:

Mark X Pistol Cartridge Loading Machine (about $38,000)
For over 30 years Ammo Load machines have served ammunition manufacturers, commercial loaders, private shooting ranges, and numerous law enforcement agencies. The Mark X Ammo Load machine (for pistol cartridges) has a maximum production rate of just over 5,000 cycles per hour. Many users produce between 3,000 and 5,000 rounds per hour. The primary factors governing the quality and quantity of ammunition produced are the components (particularly the cases), the caliber, and the capabilities of the operator.

Ammo Loader Idaho Ammunition machine

The Mark X Ammo Load machine for pistol cartridges has nine (9) stations: Case Check, Size and Deprime, Primer and Primer Disk Check, Belling, Powder Feed, Powder Check, Bullet Seating, Bullet Crimp, Final Sizing. There are checks (with shut-offs) for case feed, primer feed, bullet feed, and powder load. The Mark X comes complete with shell case feeder, primer feed tube, powder flask, and bullet feed tube.

Mark L – Automatic Rifle Ammunition Loader (About $77,000)
In 2009 Ammo Load Worldwide introduced the Mark L automatic rifle ammunition loader in .223 and .308. Many proven features from the Mark X pistol machine have been incorporated into the Mark L to provide precise and consistent rifle cartridge loading at approximately 3,000 to 3,600 rounds per hour. All of the sensors and switches use fiber optic technology to increase precision and reduce maintenance. The Mark L utilizes a 3-station powder drop; the manufacturer claims this maintains charge weights to within 1/10th of a grain.

Ammo Loader Idaho Ammunition machine

Ammo Loader Idaho Ammunition machine

Mark L Rifle Cartridge Loading Machine has 11 stations:
1. Sizing/Checking*
2. Mouth Flare
3. Priming
4. Primer Check / 1st Powder Drop
5. 2nd Powder Drop
6. 3rd Powder Drop

7. Powder Check
8. Initial Bullet Seating
9. Final Bullet Seating
10. Crimp & Bullet-in-Case Check
11. Eject
*Along with sizing, this first stage performs Flash-Hole Check, Ringer Check, and Case Check.
Permalink - Videos, Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Reloading 7 Comments »
June 14th, 2013

3-Gunners Face Tough Challenges at 2013 MGM Ironman Match

The 16th annual MGM Ironman Match was held in Idaho June 2-8, 2013. Over 140 shooters competed. Present were elite professional teams, privateers, juniors, ladies, top military and LEO teams. This very demanding 3-Gun event featured 11 diverse stages of pistol, rifle and shotgun challenges. Finishing first overall in the Scoped Tactical Division was MGM-sponsored shooter Mark Hanish with 800.937 points. Last year’s champ, Daniel Horner, was second with 754.9121 points, while Travis Gibson came in third with 685.6306 points.

Ironman MGM Idaho 2012

The aptly-named Ironman match is one of the toughest 3-Gun matches on the planet. Over the course of three grueling days, competitors must complete 11 stages (segments), shooting in excess of 900+ rounds per shooter per segment. EVERY stage requires the use of ALL three guns. The Ironman is long, intense, and you shoot till you drop! Mike Gibson, the founder of MGM Targets, and the “inventor” of the Ironman, has said: “This match isn’t for weenies or crybabies”.

Ironman MGM Idaho 2012

Ironman MGM Idaho 2012MGM Ironman Has Unique Stage Designs
The MGM Ironman is an intense test of both shooter and equipment. Participants shoot a variety of classes and various scenarios including shooting from the back of a moving vehicle, from a 20-foot tower, while driving a golf cart, and while carrying a dummy.

Of course there are plenty of MGM-made reactive targets (photo right). There’s even a 285-foot-long Zipline pistol stage. You don’t see that in the typical 3-Gun match!

With creative and challenging stage designs, high round counts, and a great RO crew the Ironman is truly a unique match. Every stage has a 10-minute time limit with an average shooting time of about 7 minutes per stage. CLICK HERE for full Ironman match results.

Ironman MGM Idaho 2012

Here is a video from the 2010 MGM Ironman. It shows many of the multi-gun stages, including the Zipline stage, filmed from multiple camera angles.

Permalink - Videos, Competition 4 Comments »
July 8th, 2012

MGM Targets Sponsors Training Camp for Junior Shooters

MGM Targets is sponsoring an action pistol shooting program for Junior shooters. The MGM Junior Shooter Camp runs July 21-23 at the Parma Rod and Gun Club in Idaho. The 3-day Junior Shooter Camp offers firearm training and competition for up to 60 junior shooters. Instruction and training will be provided by top shooters from the U.S. military, law enforcement, and competitive shooting disciplines. The list of past instructors includes: World Speed Shooting Champion, Max Michel, regional, state and national Champion, Phil Strader, IDPA and USPSA Ladies Champion, Randi Rogers, World Champions B.J. Norris, Matt Burkett and Manny Bragg as well as others.

Junior shooters camp MGM Idaho

Price for the program is $260, and students must have a reliable gun, holster, belt, 3+ magazine pouches, at least four working magazines, and 1500 rounds of loaded ammunition. The requirements are simple: The participant must be an active member of USPSA, IDPA, or SASS, must have competed in at least 4 pistol matches, and must possess good handgun handling skills already. This is not a beginner’s firearms safety class.

Graciously hosted by The Parma Rod and Gun Club, the Junior Camp is made possible by sponsors who provide funding, and a great array of prizes, some valued at over $500. Generous sponsors include MGM Targets, Leupold, Warne Scope Mounts, Colt Rifles and more. Most of the cost of the program is covered by MGM Targets.

Permalink Competition, News 1 Comment »
June 20th, 2012

280 Competitors at MGM Ironman 3-Gun Match in Idaho

The 15th annual MGM Ironman Match drew 280 competitors — the largest field ever. Present were elite professional teams, privateers, juniors, ladies, top military and LEO teams, and shooters from as far away as Denmark. This challenging 3-Gun event, held June 3-9, 2012 at the Parma Rod & Gun Club in Idaho, featured 11 diverse stages of pistol, rifle and shotgun challenges.

Ironman MGM Idaho 2012

The aptly-named Ironman match is one of the toughest 3-Gun matches on the planet. Over the course of three grueling days, competitors must complete 11 stages (segments), shooting in excess of 900+ rounds per shooter per segment. EVERY stage requires the use of ALL three guns. The Ironman is long, intense, and you shoot till you drop! Mike Gibson, the founder of MGM Targets, and the “inventor” of the Ironman, has said: “This match isn’t for weenies or crybabies”. Mike adds, “Over the past 15 years, I estimate over 4.5 Billion rounds have been fired in this event.” That’s a lot of lead going downrange!

Ironman MGM Idaho 2012

Ironman MGM Idaho 2012MGM Ironman Has Unique Stage Designs
The MGM Ironman is an intense test of both shooter and equipment. Participants shoot a variety of classes and various scenarios including shooting from the back of a moving vehicle, from a 20-foot tower, while driving a golf cart, and while carrying a dummy. Of course there are plenty of MGM-made reactive targets (photo right). There’s even a 285-foot-long Zipline pistol stage. You don’t see that in the typical 3-Gun match!

With creative and challenging stage designs, high round counts, and a great RO crew the Ironman is truly a unique match. Every stage has a 10-minute time limit with an average shooting time of about 7 minutes per stage. This year, some of the times were hampered by a day of steady rain and wind, making it all the more challenging. Overall, great efforts and camaraderie made for a great event.

Ironman MGM Idaho 2012

2012 MGM Ironman Match Winners by Class:
SCOPED TACTICAL CLASS – Daniel Horner; OPEN CLASS – Michael Voigt; LIMITED CLASS – Warren Becker; HEAVY SCOPED CLASS – Barry Dueck ; TROOPER CLASS – Ben Fortin; JUNIOR TS CLASS – Brian Nelson; SENIOR TS CLASS – Ralph Arredondo; LADY OTLH CLASS – Bethany Harris; MILITARY/LAW TS CLASS – Ben Fortin.

Here is a video from the 2010 MGM Ironman. It shows many of the multi-gun stages, including the Zipline stage, filmed from multiple camera angles.

Permalink - Videos, Competition 1 Comment »
April 2nd, 2012

New ‘Shooterest’ Twin-Station Hitch-Mounted Shooting Bench

Shooterest shooting bench hitch mountedThe new Shooterest Shooting System is a hitch-transportable, twin-station shooting bench that deploys directly from your vehicle. You can shoot EITHER with the bench attached to the hitch (and vehicle), or the Shooterest Bench can be detached for stand-alone shooting. The reversible table-tops handle both right- and left-handed shooters.

The Shooterest’s designer, Brian Auer, is a mechanical engineer. He builds Shooterest benches with his brother and father. Brian comments: “The three of us fabricate everything ourselves in our barn workshop in Rathdrum, Idaho. Basically, you can hook up the bench (fully assembled and ready to use) to your vehicle in a vertical position so it won’t hit the ground or extend past the 3-ft legal limit beyond the rear bumper. When you arrive at your shooting location, you pull one pin and move the bench to the horizontal position. You then drop the front stabilizers, maybe adjust your table height if needed, and you’re ready to shoot. The tailgate on a pickup also serves as a handy table to stage ammo, clips, guns, etc. If you don’t want the bench mounted to a vehicle (or if you don’t have a 2″ receiver), you can set the bench directly on the ground using the same parts that attach it to the vehicle.”

Shooterest shooting bench hitch mounted

Preload the Bench for Added Stability When Hitch-Mounted
Given the fact that vehicles have springs, we were concerned that there might be a little vertical play in the Shooterest when deployed mounted to a hitch. Dan Auer, Brian’s father, explained that you can eliminate any potential “bounce” by putting in a little preload: “With the bench on the hitch mount, just lift up the table a bit and extend the front stabilizers (legs) an inch or two. That preloads the system and pretty much takes up the slack in your truck springs. You end up with a very stable platform that way.”

Shooterest Shooting Bench Idaho

The Shooterest bench system comes in Deluxe and Standard models, both with twin independently adjustable platforms allowing two shooters to shoot simultaneously. The $489.00 Deluxe version features 3/4 inch plywood tops and seats, plus a convenient center-mounted deluxe shell deflector screen. The $389.00 Standard shooting bench has painted 7/16 OSB plywood tables and seats, with standard deflector screen. Both models share these other features:

  • Bench can be used mounted to vehicle OR stand-alone (detached)
  • Fully-assembled bench can be transported on vehicle receiver
  • Bench is constructed from strong, durable steel tubing
  • Bench can be disassembled to transport inside vehicle
  • Tables adjust for sitting or standing shooting positions
  • Seats are 3-way adjustable for height, fore/aft, width from centerline
  • Adjustable stabilizer legs can be adjusted for uneven terrain
  • Tables are reversible for right- or left-handed shooters
  • Bench is wheelchair accessible

For more information, visit Shooterest.com, call (208) 661-5973, or email sales [at] shooterest.com. Currently, Shooterest Benches can only be shipped within the continental U.S. ($40 flat rate) & Canada ($90 flat rate). Installation Tips: Shooterest benches come with one hitch pin, but a second pin will be required for attaching to the receiver on the vehicle. We recommend a drop receiver for any receivers mounted higher than 25 inches on the vehicle.

Product tip from The Firearm Blog.
Permalink Hunting/Varminting, New Product 2 Comments »
February 5th, 2012

From BAT: New Bolt Knob, Barrel Extensions and Muzzle Brakes

BAT machine tactical bolt knob handleBAT Machine in Idaho is now offering some new products, plus some new options for its popular actions. For tactical guys and those who prefer a bigger bolt knob, BAT now sells an optional threaded, tactical-style bolt knob. Cost is $35.00 on top of the regular action price. Buyers of two-lug actions should also note that BAT is now Tig-Welding the bolt handles on two-lug actions.

If you’re building an AR and what a precision-machined barrel extension, BAT has added AR10 and AR15 barrel extensions to inventory. These are completely machined after heat treating in only two setups. According to BAT: “This allows us to manufacture the extension with more consistency and tighter tolerances than others on the market.” AR10 bolt extensions cost $55.00, while AR15 and M4 bolt extensions cost $30.00.

BAT machine tig Weld bolt

Last but not least, BAT is now offering canon-style (horizontally-ported) CNC-machined precision muzzle brakes in two sizes. The smaller size, for barrels with muzzle diameter between 0.675 and 0.800 inch cost $115.00. The large size muzzle brakes, which fit barrels 0.800 inch and larger in muzzle diameter, run $125.00. For either size, you need to specify caliber when ordering.

BAT machine tactical bolt knob handle

Permalink Gunsmithing, New Product 4 Comments »
October 13th, 2010

Ammo-Makers Expand Production and Hire Workers in Idaho

ATK Lewiston, IDTwo ammunition manufacturers in Lewiston, Idaho, plan to add “significant numbers of workers” this year and next. Alliant Techsystems (ATK), parent of CCI, Alliant Powder, RCBS and other companies, expects to add about 100 jobs by the end of 2010, and Extreme Bullet plans to expand its facility and add about 100 jobs over the next few years. ATK’s employee ranks will grow to approximately 1,200 workers by the end of this year.

ATK will be re-hiring many workers laid off in a 2009 force reduction. According to the Spokane Journal of Business, “The new hires should give ATK a total of about 1,200 workers by the end of 2010 at its plant on the east side of the Snake River.” The Journal also interviewed ATK Spokesman Jason Nash who explained: “We’ve definitely had a few good years at the plant there. There’s been an increased demand for sporting ammunition, which has allowed us to add to our employment base.”

Speer Brothers Brought Ammo Production to Lewiston
Here is an interesting historical footnote. Today’s large ATK operation in Idaho can be traced back to the companies founded by the Speer brothers. After settling in Lewiston in 1944, Vernon Speer started Speer Bullets. A few years later, in 1951, Vernon’s brother Dick (with partner Arvid Nelson) started Cascade Cartridges Inc., a producer of small-arms ammunition and primers. Yes, as you may suspect, Cascade Cartridges Inc. is now CCI, part of ATK’s family of companies, and one of the largest manufacturers of primers and loaded ammunition. Today, ATK’s Lewiston plant produces both Speer bullets and CCI-branded ammunition and primers. ATK acquired the plant in 2001. Vernon Speer died in 1979, and Dick Speer died in 1994.

Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo, News 1 Comment »
June 28th, 2010

Amazing New MicroSight Technology Moves into Production

Microsight Rifle lens Zone PlateIn May, we reported on the new MicroSight invented by engineer (and shooter) David Crandall of the Idaho National Laboratory (INL). The MicroSight keeps both near and far objects in sharp focus, simultaneously imaging two distinct focal planes. This break-through technology allows the shooter to see a sharp image of the target and a sharp image of his iron sights at the same time.

The MicroSight is not a lens per se. Rather it is a phased Zone Plate that focuses light beams through diffraction. Zone Plates, first studied by Frenchman Augustin-Jean Fresnel in the 1800s, focus light via a set of concentric rings that alternate between transparent and opaque. The transparent sections let some light waves pass through unchanged, focusing objects that are far away (basically, at infinity). But light passing the edges of the opaque rings gets diffracted, which brings nearby objects into focus. This produces a seemingly impossible result — sharp images of distant and near objects, simultaneously.

Microsight Rifle lens Zone Plate

The MicroSight is not just a laboratory experiment. Prototype versions have been crafted and placed on test rifles. INL has licensed the technology to Apollo Optical Systems which is right now working with gunsight manufacturers to adapt the MicroSight design to a variety of products. In the future, some MicroSight-equipped products might add refractive power to the Zone Plate, allowing target magnification as well as focusing.

WATCH the VIDEO below to see the MicroSight in Use and to learn how it works…

YouTube Preview Image

Microsight Rifle sight Zone Plate

Permalink New Product, News, Optics 11 Comments »