May 25th, 2019

New Carbon-Wrapped Barrels from Helix 6 Precision

Helix 6 Precision Barrel carbon fiber proof research

Are you looking to shave POUNDS from your hunting rig or varmint rifle? There is a new option for folks looking for a weight-saving, carbon fiber-wrapped barrel. You’ve probably heard about Proof Research. That’s a good company that crafts good products. But now Proof Research has some competition — Helix 6 Precision in Washington State.

Helix 6 Precision Barrel carbon fiber proof research

Helix 6 Precision crafts button-rifled, carbon-wrapped barrels in both conventional and “pre-fit” configurations. Pre-fits are offered for Savage rifles as well as the Ruger Precision Rifle (RPR) series. These pre-fit barrels are not cheap. A 6.5 Creedmoor RPR pre-fit costs $995.00, while the Savage pre-fits are also just under a grand. The conventional barrel blanks cost $895.00 in .224, .243, .264, .284, and .308 calibers. The larger .338 caliber barrels run $945.00.

Helix 6 Precision Barrel carbon fiber proof research

While Helix 6 barrels do offer significant weight savings, the founders of Helix 6 say low mass wasn’t the number one design goal: “Accuracy was paramount and weight reduction was secondary. We’ve taken the industry’s most advanced carbon fiber engineering and pushed the technology further with our proprietary … carbon fiber process.”

The founders of Helix 6 Precision say they build some of the best carbon/steel hybrid barrels on the market: “Our unique carbon fiber-layup design dampens barrel harmonics for better accuracy. Each barrel is cut from a 416R stainless steel core, and carbon fiber-wrapped using the Helix 6 Precision’s advanced process. This creates match-grade accuracy barrels with high heat dispersion that are 30% lighter than a steel barrel of the same contour. The bores are … hand-lapped for precision accuracy.” Helix 6 claims its barrels are “lighter, stronger, and faster cooling than anything else available on the market.”

Myth vs. Reality — What Carbon Can and Cannot Do

Carbon fiber is formed using thin strands of carbon bonded together with a plastic polymer resin. The resulting material is very strong and light weight. There’s a reason Formula 1 cars are crafted with carbon-fiber composites. But is a carbon-wrapped barrel the right option for you? Here are some factors to consider:

Weight Savings — There’s no doubt that a carbon-wrapped barrel will weigh less than an unfluted stainless steel barrel with identical length and contour (outside diameters). Helix 6 claims a 30% weight reduction compared to a conventional stainless steel barrel. That’s significant.

Accuracy — Carbon-wrapped barrels are NOT commonly being used for F-Class or Benchrest competition. However, Proof Research carbon-wrapped barrels have performed well in PRS competitions in the hands of top shooters. So, we can conclude that carbon accuracy is good enough for the PRS/NRL tactical game, at least at the local club level.

Heat Dispersion — Carbon-wrapped barrel-makers claim their hybrid design disperses heat better than an all-steel barrel. Some independent testers disagree, saying: “hold on now — the carbon actually acts as an insulator, so more heat is retained in the barrel”. The jury is still out. One thing that is true is that the carbon barrels seem to generate less mirage from barrel heat. Ask yourself, “if less heat is coming OFF the barrel, where is that heat retained?” But the reduced mirage could be a function of the black woven surface which may release heat differently than polished steel.

Standard, Pre-Fit, and Custom Barrel Options
Helix 6 Precision barrels are available as pre-fit barrels for both Savage and the Ruger Precision Rifle in many popular long-range cartridges. Barrel blanks are sold in five calibers from .224 to .338. Helix 6 can also thread and chamber a barrel for any precision rifle. Helix 6 Precision also builds one-off barrels to fit individual needs.

Permalink Gear Review, Hunting/Varminting, New Product 2 Comments »
February 6th, 2019

Midweek Movies — More SHOT Show 2019 Product Videos

shot show 2019 savage proof research ultimate reloader gavin gear thompson center accuracy international AI

SHOT Show is the largest gun/hunting trade show in the world, with tens of thousands of products and accessories on display. For a gun guy, going to SHOT Show is like being a kid in a candy store.

We’ve seen that the SHOT Show 2019 videos we’ve showcased thus far have been very popular with our readers. So today we are bringing you five more SHOT Show videos, featuring products from Accuracy International, Proof Research, Savage, Thompson Center (T/C), and five pistol-makers.

Proof Research — Hi-Tech Barrels and Rifles

Here our friend Gavin Gear of UltimateReloader.com learns about the carbon-wrapped Proof Research barrels. Being lighter than conventional barrels, these Proof Research barrels definitely offer an advantage for hunters packing into the wild.

Proof Research Carbon Barrels ultralight

The Proof Research carbon barrels have also performed very well in PRS/NRL tactical competitions. There is a lot of technical information shared in this interview, so it is definitely worth watching.

Thompson Center Arms (T/C) — Value Leader

Thompson Center Arms (T/C), a Smith & Wesson Company, is known for value-priced rifles that offer great “bang for the buck”. We’ve regularly featured T/C rifles in our Deals of the Week. There are some impressive guns in the T/C line-up, including the T/C LRR (Long Range Rifle).

Thompson Center T/C LRR PRS long range rifle

With an $1100 street price, this rig is a great value choice for PRS factory class. The rig balances well and we like the thumbwheel adjustments for LOP and cheek height.

Accuracy International $19.5K ASR with 3-Barrel Deployment Kit

If T/C guns are bargains, then the Accuracy International (AI) line of rifles is at the other end of the spectrum. At SHOT Show this year AI displayed its Advanced Sniper Rifle (ASR) which will be submitted for SOCOM’s multi-caliber rifle program. This rig costs a hefty $19,544.00 as a “deployment kit” including three barrels (.308 Win, .300 Norma Mag, and .338 Norma Mag), two bolt bodies, key spare parts, magazines and a MilSpec transport case.

accuracy international AI .308 .300 Norma Magnum mag socom rifle .338

The AI ASR employs a QuickLoc barrel change system for rapid caliber swaps. The rifle features a new two-position, AR-type safety and redesigned 2.5-lb trigger. The fore-end tube includes an RRS™-compatible rail, integrated top rail, and M-Lok™ mounting interface.

Savage Hunting Rifles — Model 110 High Country

For 2019 Savage unveiled some handsome, versatile rifles for backcountry hunters. These rigs feature nice camo finishes, adjustable AccuFit cheekpieces and buttpads, and barrels threaded at the muzzle for brakes or suppressors.

Savage High Country model 110

We liked these new rifles, particularly the Model 110 High Country featured above. It has a tough corrosion-resistant finish and spiral-fluted barrel for weight savings.

Handguns — Some of the Best New Pistols for 2019

In this video, The Firearm Blog (TFB) presents its five favorite new-for-2019 handguns. TFB praised the new KelTec CP33, a VERY impressive new .22 LR rimfire target pistol, boasting a 33-round clear magazine. On Media Day, we shot the CP33 with a suppressor and were extremely impressed. The gun balances well, and the trigger is EXCELLENT — really surprisingly good. Glock attracted attention with the new Glock 43X and 48 silver-slide models. The 43X does offer more capacity (10 rounds) with a longer grip vs. the Glock 43. Buyers may be attracted by the silver PVD-finished slide. Frankly, that’s nothing more than cosmetics and the Glock still retains not-so-great ergonomics and a mediocre trigger. There are better striker-fired, DAO polymer-framed pistols out there, for less money.

New KelTec CP33 is a high-capacity winner, with a great trigger.
Keltec CP33

Permalink - Videos, Gear Review, Handguns, New Product, News No Comments »
December 2nd, 2018

Pynch Podcast — Jon Pynch, NRL National Champ and PRS Ace

Jon Pynch Tactical PRS NRL National Rifle League

What does it take to win in the tactical game? Ask Oregon’s Jon Pynch. He won the 2018 National Rifle League (NRL) 2018 Championship event along with three out of six of the bolt-action PRS matches in which he competed this year. And with 300 points overall this season, Jon has been a #1-rated shooter within the Precision Rifle Series (PRS). In most sports you’d call that an MVP performance.

Jon Pynch Tactical PRS NRL National Rifle League

PRS Competitor Jon Pynch had a superlative run in 2018, scoring victories in many big matches, capped off by winning top honors at the 2018 NRL Championship. And as you read this, this very day (December 2nd) Jon is shooting at the PRS Season Finale at the Triple C Range in Cresson, Texas. Here is Jon Pynch’s 2018 competition record:

2018 National Rifle League Champion
2018 National Rifle League Finale Winner
2018 Rock Lake NRL Match – Jon Pynch – 1st Place
2018 JC Steel High Mountain PRS Match – Jon Pynch – 1st Place
2018 Meaford PRS Match – Jon Pynch – 1st Place
2018 NCPPRC NRL Match – Jon Pynch – 1st Place
2018 Gunwerks PRS Match – Jon Pynch — 1st Place

NRL Champ Jon Pynch was interviewed for the NRL’s Precision Rifle Channel. Click the Red Arrow above to hear a wide-ranging 45-minute audio interview with Jon, with highlights listed below, so you can skip to key sections.

JON PYNCH PODCAST HIGHLIGHTS:

0:00 to 8:45 — 2018 NRL Championship
9:00 – The mental aspect of shooting
16:30 – Jon’s mindset going into a match
20:30 – What gear Jon ran this season
28:20 – Jon’s hunting background
30:55 – The next up-and-comers in the sport
41:20 – Plans and goals for 2019
43:55 – Three (3) under-rated items Jon can’t shoot without

Jon Pynch Tactical PRS NRL National Rifle League

Pynch won 3 out of 6 PRS bolt-action matches he shot in 2018. Pynch runs a landscaping business in Oregon. When time permits, he travels around the country to tactical matches. He grew up around guns, starting with his trusty BB gun, and the passion grew. About 14 years ago, Pynch started to dabble in long-range shooting from the hunting side. In the past few years, he has focused more on competition, observing how the sport has changed: “Over the past couple of years, I’ve noticed it feels like the level of competition and the level of quality products are growing at an incredible rate.”

CLICK HERE for full size image showing gun details.
Jon Pynch Tactical PRS NRL National Rifle League

The MPA BA Competition Chassis has many notable features: RAT System and multi-function Arca Swiss Rail provide a variety of bipod locations. There is a special rotating barricade stop, plus a spigot mount on the front of the fore-end which can extend the “wheelbase” between front and rear support. A clever Weight Tuning System allows competitors to adjust gun balance and reduce felt recoil.

State of the Art PRS/NRL Tactical Rifle:
Jon Pynch Tactical PRS NRL National Rifle League

Above is Jon’s Match Rifle shown from summer 2018 with older barrel chambered for 6mm Dasher. These shots were taken during a fire-forming session. John says: “On right (below) is unfired Lapua 6mmBR round. Shoot it and it turns in the case on the left. 6mm Dasher. 25 formed… 975 to go! Alamo Precision Rifles did a great job on this chamber/barrel. It’s won a few matches and placed well in a few others, but after 1800 rounds I think I’ll use the rest of its life as a practice/fireforming barrel.”

Making Brass — 6mmBR loaded round is fire-formed into 6mm Dasher 40° improved case:
Jon Pynch Tactical PRS NRL National Rifle League

Jon Pynch’s Favored Hardware — Curtis Vector Action, Kahles Scope, MPA Comp Chassis
Like many PRS/NRL competitors, Jon uses the MPA Competition Chassis, the most-utilized chassis in the 2016 and 2017 PRS series. The match rifle above sports a Curtis Custom Vector Action with Proof Research barrel. For optics Jon has recently used a Kahles scope in the rock-solid, MPA BA Mount, the #1 Mount used in the PRS in 2017.

Jon Pynch Tactical PRS NRL National Rifle League

Jon Pynch Tactical PRS NRL National Rifle League

Permalink - Videos, Competition, Gear Review, Tactical No Comments »
May 2nd, 2018

PROOF Research Video Reveals Carbon-Wrap Barrel Technology

Proof Reseach carbon fiber barrel wrap aerospace composites

Montana-based PROOF Research has released a revealing new video showcasing carbon fiber firearms technology and the company’s barrel-making process. Viewers will find the 8-minute film an intriguing introduction to composite barrel-making, which employs aerospace carbon fiber wrapped around a steel barrel core. The video showcases the high-tech machines used at PROOF’s production facilities.

Proof Reseach carbon fiber barrel wrap aerospace composites

PROOF’s CEO Larry Murphy explains that PROOF’s barrel technology is state-of-the-art: “What PROOF Research is doing is bringing disruption into our industry. We’re doing things that have never been done here before. That’s going to help the warfighter, and it’s going to help the average hunter … it’s going to do a lot of things.” The video shows how the company employs aerospace-grade, high-temperature composite materials to build match-grade carbon fiber-wrapped barrels, and composite rifle systems.

Proof Reseach carbon fiber barrel wrap aerospace composites

Dr. David Curliss, General Manager of PROOF Research’s Advanced Composite Division, and former head of the U.S. Air Force High Temperature Composites Laboratory, explains how aerospace expertise helps in the development of PROOF’s firearms-related products: “We are able to provide premier materials for PROOF Research for firearms barrels applications as well as the aerospace market. We’re probably the only firearms technology company that has composite materials in orbit around the earth.”

Proof Reseach carbon fiber barrel wrap aerospace composites

Permalink - Videos, Gunsmithing, New Product 6 Comments »
January 29th, 2018

Carbon Fiber for the Latest Generation of Rifles and Barrels

Sako 85 Carbon Fiber Wolf Hunting Rifle

Gun-makers and barrel builders have adopted aerospace technology, using carbon fiber in their stocks and composite barrels. At SHOT Show 2018, we saw carbon applications on dozens of rifle brands. Some rifles sported full carbon stocks AND carbon-wrapped barrels. Others sported a carbon stock with steel barrel, or a carbon-wrapped barrel in a conventional stock. Carbon is definitely here to stay. This advanced material allows rifles to be lighter yet stronger. The advantages for the hunter in the field are real — a carbon-wrapped barrel can save quite a few pounds. Here are some of the most notable carbon applications we saw at SHOT Show.

Sako 85 Carbon Wolf

Sako 85 Carbon Fiber Wolf Hunting Rifle

Possibly the best-looking carbon-stocked rifle at SHOT Show was the Sako 85 Carbon Wolf, featured in our Top Photo. New for 2018, this rifle features a full carbon composite stock, with the signature carbon fiber weave visible throughout. We found this new-for-2018 rig very ergonomic and nice to handle. The advanced-design RTW carbon fiber stock offers quick, push-button adjustments for comb height and LOP. Though not carbon-wrapped, the conventional 24″ blued steel barrel is fluted, reducing the overall weight of the rifle. Without optics, this rifle weighs well under 8 pounds. We were impressed by the Carbon Wolf, but choked on the steep $3600.00 MSRP. Street price will be lower — EuroOptic.com is listing a $3148.00 price for the Sako 85 Carbon Wolf.

The Firearm Blog says: “The stock features Soft Touch coating. Is is not at all slippery or loud like some carbon stocks can be. The barrels are factory threaded as well. Both the weight and the balance of the Carbon Wolf rifle felt perfect. I may have to add one to my Finnish rifle collection.” This is offered in 6.5 Creedmoor, .308 Win, .30-06 Sprg, 7mm Mag, and .300 Win Mag.

Nosler M48 Long-Range Carbon Rifle

Nosler M48 Long Range Carbon Fiber Hunting Rifle

Nosler recently introduced the M48 Long-Range Carbon rifle with the addition of a PROOF Research, carbon fiber-wrapped, match-grade barrel that significantly reduces the overall weight of the rifle. The carbon-wrapped Proof barrel is mated to a trued M48 receiver and bedded in a Manners MCS-T carbon fiber-strengthened stock. Nosler says: “The Model 48 Long-Range Carbon is an excellent choice for mountain hunting, backcountry excursions and long range competition where weight is a concern.” Initially, this rifle will be offered for 6.5 Creedmoor, 26 Nosler, 28 Nosler, 30 Nosler, .300 Win Mag, and 33 Nosler.

Christensen Arms TFM — Carbon Galore for 7.3-lb Rifle

Christensen Arms TFM Carbon Fiber Hunting Rifle
Christensen Arms TFM Carbon Fiber Hunting Rifle

As you can see there’s a whole lot of carbon fiber in the Christensen Arms TFM rifle. With a carbon-wrapped barrel and full carbon-fiber stock, this handsome rig weighs just 7.3 pounds (short action) or 7.8 pounds (long action). The carbon-wrapped stainless barrel and fully-adjustable Aerograde carbon-fiber stock are mated to a precision-machined action via integrated carbon fiber pillars. In addition, the TFM includes an integrated, 20-MOA optics rail, detachable magazine, and a titanium side-port brake. Impressively, Christensen Arms guarantees 0.5 MOA (half-MOA) accuracy.

Manners Full-Carbon F-Class Stock

Manners F-Class Stock
Manners F-Class Carbon Fiber Stock

For many years now, Manners Composite Stocks has offered an ultra-stiff, Low-Profile ‘Fish Belly’ F-Class Stock. The shell is 100% carbon fiber with a very long, stiff fore-end. From the back of the action to the tip of the fore-end the stock measures 27″ long which is around 7 1/2″ longer than the Manners T4 stock. The idea is to provide a longer wheelbase to better balance the long, 30-32″ barrels favored by many F-Class competitors. The front half of the fore-end is very thin (from top to bottom) to achieve a low profile on the bags. Much thought has gone into controlling fore-end flex. The stock achieves greater vertical rigidity (less deflection under load) through an innovative “fish belly” design. The rounded undersection, like a canoe hull, strengthens the fore-end considerably.

Weatherby Mark V with Carbon-Wrapped Barrel

Weatherby Proof Research Carbon Barrel
Proof Research Carbon-Wrapped Barrel

Weatherby now offers rifles with Proof Research carbon fiber-wrapped barrels. The aerospace-grade carbon fiber in the Mark V Carbon barrel makes the barrel up to 64% lighter than traditional steel barrels of the same contour. Weatherby claims the carbon-fiber technology improves heat dissipation — so the barrel does not heat up as quickly with extended strings of fire. The 26” #4 contour carbon-wrapped barrel has a cut-rifled, hand-lapped 416R grade stainless steel core with a flush thread cap and 5/8-24 muzzle threads. It’s finished in tactical grey Cerakote. The Mark V Carbon carries Weatherby’s SUB-MOA (at 100 yards) accuracy guarantee when used with Weatherby factory or premium ammunition.

Carbon Edge from Fierce Firearms

Proof Research Carbon-Wrapped Barrel

Fierce Firearms also offers a long-range hunting rig with a carbon-wrapped barrel. This is an extremely light rig. Without scope or optional muzzle brake, the short-action version weighs just 6.4 pounds. It is available in Black/gray, Green/black and a variety of Camo finishes including Kryptec Highlander and Typhon patterns. All this lightweight tech doesn’t come cheap. The Carbon Edge retails for $3250.00 and a left-hand version is $250.00 more. Fierce does offer a 0.5 MOA (half-MOA) accuracy guarantee, which is something.

How Good Are Proof Research Barrels? — Commentary by Mike Davis

Over the past 15 years Davis Custom Rifle has installed barrels from most major barrel manufacturers. We are very fortunate to have such quality barrel makers. I think Proof Research falls into that top-of-the-line category. Proof Research carbon-wrapped steel barrels are super light-weight, yet offer rigidity and superb accuracy. I have used them for 22-250, 6mm/6.5mm Creedmoor, .308 Win builds and multiple long range hunting rifles in .280, .280 AI, .300 WSM, .300 Win Mag, 28 Nosler, and 30 Nosler. These builds with Proof Research barrels typically deliver quarter-MOA accuracy or better.

Manners F-Class Carbon Fiber Stock

The Proof Research technology allows us to build lighter rifles with outstanding accuracy, easy cleaning, and the ability to shoot long strings without point of impact shift. It’s not hard to understand why hunting rifles with these capabilities are in high demand. Combined with other light-weight components (such as Titanium actions), it’s not difficult to get these rifles down to 6.25 to 7 pounds total weight before optics.

Permalink Gunsmithing, New Product, Tech Tip 3 Comments »
January 4th, 2018

More New-for-2018 Guns and Gear

Tikka T1X TAC A1 left left-hand tactical PRS Rifle

Tikka T1X TAC A1 left left-hand tactical PRS RifleOur recent “Sneak Previews” of new-for-2018 guns and shooting products have been very popular with our readers. Following on that, here are more New Rifles. These eight rifle selections (plus a new stock) were revealed in the 50-Page 2018 New Product Showcase in Shooting Industry Magazine’s January issue. This January Product Showcase, which you can access for free online, features products from 183 companies. And the December 2017 issue unveiled many more. Combined, the two Shooting Industry New Business Year editions have revealed new products from more than 240 brands.

CLICK HERE to SEE 50-Page 2018 NEW PRODUCT Showcase »

Here we spotlight some of the more interesting New-for-2018 Firearms and Accessories. All these products are found in Shooting Industry’s 2018 New Product Showcase.

New Tactical Rifles from Legacy International

Lithgow LA 105 Howa 1500 Bravo tactical rifle

Legacy Sports is offering two new tactical rifles, both well-suited for PRS matches and tac comps. The Lithgow LA105 (top, above) comes in both 6.5 Creedmoor (1:8″) and .308 Win (1:10″) chamberings, with 24″ barrels with Lithgow muzzle brakes. The new Howa Bravo (tan stock above), is offered with 20″, 24″, and 26″ barrels in three chamberings: 6mm Creedmoor, 6.5 Creedmoor, and .308 Win. The Howa 1500 action rides in a KRG Bravo Chassis with adjustable comb and adjustable LOP. We’re please to note this rig accepts AICS mags.

Mossberg MVP Precision — Affordable PRS Factory Class Rifle

Mossberg MVP Precision

The New Mossberg MVP Precision is another rifle targeting the PRS Crowd. It features an all-new chassis with a longer fore-end up front and a fully-adjustable LUTH-AR MBA-3 stock in the back. This should be popular. Every rifle comes with an LBA trigger, and 20″ or 24″ threaded and free-floated medium bull barrels are standard. The action features an oversize bolt handle with a Picatinny rail on top. Available chamberings include the 6.5 Creedmoor (no surprise) and 7.62×51 (.308 Win). Mossberg will also offer combo packages fitted with Vortex Viper HS-T riflescope.

New T1x Rimfire Rifle from Tikka — Plus a Lefty TAC A1

Tikka T1X .22 LR rimfire 17 HMR

Tikka is introducing a new Rimfire rifle, the Tikka T1x. It features a medium-contour 20″ barrel with threaded muzzle, 10-round detachable magazine, and a smooth bolt throw. This will be offered in Both .22 LR and .17 HMR. The rifle boasts the feel and balance of Tikka’s centerfire line, so this can serve as a nice small-bore option for fans of Tikka hunting rifles. MSRP for the T1X is $499.00.

Tikka T1X TAC A1 left left-hand tactical PRS Rifle

Tikka will also be introducing a 6.5 Creedmoor version of its popular T3X hunting rifle for 2018, along with a left-hand version of the Tikka TAC A1 Rifle, an impressive modular rig priced at $1999.00 to qualify for PRS factory class. South-paws should be happy.

New Rimfire Rig from Europe — Steyr’s Handsome Zephyr II

steyr Zephyr II Rimfire smallbore .22 LR 17 HMR .22 WMR

Steyr’s new Rimfire rifle, the Zephyr II, is offered in .22 LR, and .22 WMR, and .17 HMR. The Zephyr II features a classic European walnut stock with a Bavarian cheek piece, and nice checkering on the grips and handguard. We think this would make a good carry-around varminter, as we bet the Zephyr has good balance and excellent accuracy (based on our experience with other Steyrs). Zephyr II has a smooth-running action, tang safety, and cold-hammer-forged 19.7-inch barrel. Without scope, the Zephyr II weighs 5.8 lbs., including 5-rd detachable magazine.

AR with Proof Research Carbon Composite Barrels from LWRC International

AR10 AR15 Proof Research Carbon Barrel

You can’t have a SHOT Show without some interesting new Black Rifles. LWRC International (LWRCI) will unveil some new AR-platform rifles in interesting chamberings. The smaller IC-DI (AR15) line will be offered .223 Wylde and the impressive .224 Valkyrie chamberings, along with the typical 5.56 NATO. What really caught our eye, however, was the larger AR10-platform REPR model, shown above. This will be available in two new variants: 6.5 Creedmoor (all-steel barrel) and 6.5 Creedmoor with a PROOF Research carbon fiber composite barrel. Weighing just 9 lbs., the PROOF Research model is a full 2.8 lbs. lighter than the standard model. Each features an LWRCI tunable gas block, Monoforge upper receiver with integrated rail-base, and ambidextrous lower receiver controls.

Grayboe Ridgeback Stock — Innovative Tactical/Practical Design

Grayboe Ridgeback Stock CAD Drawing PRS

The Grayboe RIDGEBACK is a new stock specifically designed for PRS and tactical-style shooting. The Ridgeback is made of a solid, fiberglass epoxy material and features M-LOK sections built into the fore-end, a bubble level behind the action and an adjustable comb that can be re-positioned easily with one hand. NOTE: This preview shows a CAD rendering; production model may vary slightly.

New Savage 110 Models with Adjustable Stocks

Savage AccuStock AccuFit Adjustable stock internal Chassis

For 2018, Savage’s model 110 line-up boasts higher-quality, user-adjustable stocks. The all-new AccuFit system allows shooters to customize length of pull and comb height. The new AccuStock features a rigid chassis embedded in the stock. Savage has a full line of revamped 110s with these enhanced stocks. For example, the Savage 110 Long Range Hunter shown here features a 26″ barrel with brake, and is offered in six calibers: 6.5 Creedmoor, .260 Rem, .308 Win, 300 WSM, and .338 Federal.

How To Carry All These New Rifles…
So how do you hold all these new-for-2018 rifles — and transport them safely back from SHOT Show? Here’s a recently-introduced product that can help — the CaseCruzer Mini 2N2 GunPOD:

CaseCruzer GunPOD rifle case

We love this thing — it will hold two rifles (up to 35″ OAL) and two handguns, plus mags and a whole lot more — muffs, ammo boxes, you name it. This CaseCruzer Mini 2N2 GunPOD is all you need to transport all your gear to a three-gun match. The case is airline-approved and even has wheels. It ain’t cheap though — MSRP is $535.00. There is also a larger version, the 3N3 GunPod (below) that holds THREE Rifles up to 41″ OAL plus three handguns. Priced at $582.00, the 3N3 holds more but it’s pretty heavy (29 lbs. empty). We like the versatility and sturdiness of these CaseCruzer GunPODs.

CaseCruzer GunPOD rifle case

Permalink Hunting/Varminting, New Product, Tactical No Comments »
September 13th, 2016

Norm Crawford Wins Wimbleton Cup with Composite Barrel

Norman Crawford Proof Research Wimbleton Cup 2016 Camp Perry
Tech Milestone — Norm Crawford won the 2016 Wimbledon Cup at Camp Perry using a carbon-fiber composite barrel. That’s a first for composite barrel technology.

With a score of 200-16X, Norman Crawford won the Wimbledon Cup Match during the 2016 National Long Range Rifle Championships using a 32″ Proof Research carbon-fiber composite barrel chambered in .284 Shehane. The Wimbledon Cup Match, a prestigious 1,000-yard shooting competition, dates back to 1875. The current course of fire consists of 20 timed shots, fired from prone. Crawford’s win represents the first time in the Cup’s 141-year history that it has been won with anything other than an all-steel barrel. The Proof Research barrel features a steel core with an external multi-axis carbon wrap.

Crawford’s Wimbledon Cup win really is an important technological milestone. Crawford’s performance may encourage other competitors to consider steel/carbon composite barrels for a variety of shooting disciplines. Without question, composite technology barrels offer significant weight-savings over conventional all-steel barrels. And Crawford proved that a composite barrel can deliver winning accuracy, at least in a sling/prone discipline.

Norman Crawford Proof Research Wimbleton Cup 2016 Camp Perry

“I don’t know of anyone else in this sport using a carbon fiber [composite] barrel,” said Crawford, who has been shooting Proof composite barrels since 2013.

“The benefits over a steel barrel are that you get a larger-diameter, stiffer, faster-cooling barrel that weighs less than a standard, medium Palma-taper barrel. [There is] no real downside I’ve been able to identify in three years of shooting them. All five Proof barrels I own are capable of winning any match — providing I do my part.”

A 30-year Army vet and former Army Special Operations Sniper, Crawford has been shooting competitively since 1990. He has won many major titles, including the NRA National Long Range Championship in 2005. His 2016 Wimbledon Cup victory was his second — Norm also won the Cup in 2003. A three-time member of the U.S. Rifle Team at the World Championships, Crawford also used a Proof Research barrel to tie the national record for a 600-yard Any Gun, Any Sight competition in North Carolina last November, one of five national records he has set or tied during his shooting career.

Proof Research CEO Larry Murphy praised Crawford: “We are honored that Norm chose our barrel to go up against the best shooters in the world with. By putting our barrels to the test in intense competition, he pushes us to do our best as well.”

Permalink Competition, Gunsmithing, Tech Tip 1 Comment »
July 14th, 2016

Carbon-Wrapped Savage Pre-Fit Barrels Now Available

Proof research carbon wrap barrels composite

Here’s a new barrel option for Savage shooters. Proof Research, a leader in composite barrel production, now offers “Pre-Fit” barrels for Savages. These barrels come chambered and threaded for Savage actions. Pre-Fits are easy to install — just spin them on, set the headspace with gauges, and tension the barrel nut. (Proof Research does recommend enlisting a gunsmith to help with the process.)

With a finished weight under three pounds, these new Pre-Fit barrels are much lighter than conventional all-steel barrels. Proof Research claims that they are “less than half the weight of comparably-sized steel barrels.” But you will pay dearly for that weight savings. As sold by Stocky’s Stocks, these Proof Research Pre-Fits cost $846.99, more than twice what all-steel Pre-Fit barrels from Criterion or Pac-Nor cost. Criterion Barrels currently charges $370.00 for a 26″ Savage or Rem/Age Pre-Fit.

Proof Research claims that its carbon-wrapped barrels shed heat faster than an all-steel barrel. Jason Lincoln, Proof Research’s VP of Engineering, claims that his company’s composite barrels can cool 50% faster than steel barrels, offering reduced point-of-impact shift during extended strings of fire. Is this marketing hype? We have yet to see a definitive test that validates the claims of enhanced cooling…

Proof Research Savage Pre-Fit Options Available
Initially the Pre-Fit barrels will be offered in a “Sendero” profile, very similar to an M24 contour. Available barrel lengths (up to 28″) vary by caliber/chambering (in some cases 24″ is all you can get). The following chamberings and twist rates are currently offered by Stocky’s Stocks:

.223 Rem, 1:8″ Twist
.22-250 Rem, 1:8″ Twist
.243 Win, 1:8″ Twist
6.5 Creedmoor, 1:8″ Twist
6.5×284, 1:8″ Twist

280 Ackley, 1:9″ Twist
7mm Rem Mag, 1:9″ Twist
.308 Win Match, 1:10″ Twist
.300 Win Mag, 1:9.4″ Twist

Proof Research Carbon Technology
Proof research carbon wrap barrels composite

Product Tip from EdLongrange. We welcome reader submissions.
Permalink Gunsmithing, New Product 5 Comments »
September 20th, 2014

Slow-Motion Video Shows Bullets Pass Through Muzzle Brakes

Proof Research High speed photography muzzle brakeIf you want to see how a muzzle brake really works, definitely watch this remarkable slow-motion video compiled by Proof Research.

This amazing video features a variety of firearms: suppressed 9mm pistol, .338 Norma rifle, .300 WinMag rifle, 12ga comp’d shotgun, plus an AR15 and AR10.

This Must-Watch Video Has Some Amazing Ultra-Slow-Motion Segments

Watch the ultra-slow motion segment at the 2:55 mark and you can actually see a .30-cal bullet spin its way through the muzzle brake, leaving trail of flame that blows out the ports. Interestingly, at the 3:10 mark, you can also see a bright “afterburn” ball of fire that forms a few inches ahead of the muzzle milliseconds after the bullet has left the barrel. Perhaps this is late ignition of unburned powder?

Video Time Line (Test Firearm Segments)

  • 00:23 – 00:53: Walther 9mm PPQ Pistol, Osprey 45 Suppressor
  • 00:54 – 01:44: Proof Research .338 Norma Rifle, Carbon-wrapped Barrel, 3P Muzzle Brake
  • 01:45 – 02:22: Remington 870 12ga Shotgun, VangComp Ported
  • 02:23 – 03:40: Proof Research 300 WM Rifle, Carbon-wrapped Barrel, 51T Muzzle Brake
  • 03:41 – 04:14: AR15 (M16) Rifle, Vltor A5-A5H2 Buffer
  • 04:15 – 05:23: AR10 .338 RCM

Proof Research High speed photography muzzle brake

Proof Research (PR) sells high-grade hunting and tactical rifles built with PR-made actions and carbon-wrapped barrels. For more information, visit ProofResearch.com.

Credit Steve of TheFirearmBlog.com for this YouTube video. Footage by JNZ for Proof Research.

Permalink - Videos, Bullets, Brass, Ammo 3 Comments »