May 8th, 2018

New Mobile Apps for LabRadar to Be Released Soon

LabRadar chronograph doppler radar chrono mobile app iOS iphone smartphone android phone

LabRadar owners can celebrate. New mobile-friendly control software is coming soon. Gunsmith and Benchrest Hall of Famer Thomas “Speedy” Gonzalez had some interesting news from the NRA Show in Dallas. He learned that the creators of the LabRadar chronograph systems will soon offer Mobile Apps that can run on your iOS or Android smartphone or tablet. This new software will make it much easier to control the LabRadar, and offer enhanced data editing functionality.

New LabRadar iOS and Android Mobile Apps Coming Soon…

LabRadar chronograph doppler radar chrono mobile app iOS iphone smartphone android phoneSpeedy says: “I just got back from the NRA show in Dallas, Texas. The coolest thing I personally saw at the show was at the LabRadar booth. They had the Beta versions of their new LabRadar Apps for the iPhone and Android phones. These Apps let you control all LabRadar functions from your phone as well as your tablet via Bluetooth connection. The new Apps will also allow the LabRadar owner to store and edit his or her data from a much larger and user friendly screen.”

That’s good news. We particularly like the ability to edit LabRadar data on a tablet. Speedy added: “This is going to revolutionize this great product and make it [much more] user-friendly.”

The new LabRadar Mobile Apps will be available free for LabRadar owners. If you own a LabRadar, be sure to register your LabRadar on the LabRadar Website. That will ensure you are notified via email as soon as the software is available. To register, look for the text link at the top right of the LabRadar homepage. It says “Register your LabRadar “. Click the link then fill out the data form.

LabRadar chronograph doppler radar chrono mobile app iOS iphone smartphone android phone

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February 21st, 2017

Find Shooting Ranges and Gun Clubs with Free Mobile App

Where to Shoot Mobile App Free

Range Locator Where to Shoot AppHow’d you like to locate any rifle range in North America in a matter of seconds? That’s now possible with the Where To Shoot Mobile App, available FREE for both iOS (Apple) and Android devices. The iOS App is designed for both iPhones and iPads.

The Where To Shoot App quickly locates shooting ranges near you, drawing on North America’s most comprehensive directory of shooting ranges. Users can search by current location, state, or zip code and find specifics about each range, including shooting activities offered. Once you locate a range, you can get driving directions to the range.

CLICK HERE for FREE Apple iPhone and iPad App | CLICK HERE for FREE Android Mobile App

The app is modeled after NSSF’s popular WhereToShoot.org® website and is updated frequently with range information in every U.S. State and Canadian province. Once you’ve location a place to shoot, the App helps you get directions to the range. The App also includes video tips for shooters, news, and firearm-safety information. Download the app via the links above or by visiting wheretoshoot.org on your mobile device.

The NSSF’s Where To Shoot mobile App has topped 140,000 downloads. The app, which rose to No. 4 on the Apple App Store’s list of free sports Apps, has been a hit with target shooters and gun owners nationwide.

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December 22nd, 2015

Released — Applied Ballistics Kestrel LiNK Ballistics App for iOS

Kestrel LiNK applied ballistics app iOS Apple iPhone Ipod

Kestrel LiNK applied ballistics app iOS Apple iPhone IpodiPhone owners rejoice. The much-awaited iOS Ballistics App for the Kestrel LiNK Weather Meter is now available. Now you can sync your 5700 Series Kestrel wirelessly with your iPhone, iPod, or iPad. With Apple iOS devices being so popular among serious shooters, this is an important software release. Bryan Litz of Applied Ballistics was proud to announce the new development: “Kestrel LiNK Ballistics is now available for iOS! It has been available for Android, and was also recently updated to fix some issues. Android users should be on version 1.67 by now. We say thank you to those who have been patiently waiting for the iOS version”. The software is a FREE download from the Apple App Store. For supporting info and Users’ Guides for both iOS and Android versions, visit the Applied Ballistics Resource Site.

CLICK HERE for FREE Kestrel LiNK Ballistics Application for iOS

This App is designed to work with the new 5700-series Kestrel Elite Weather Meter (5700AL) or Kestrel Sportsman Weather Meter (5700SL) with LiNK, powered by Bluetooth Smart.

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March 29th, 2015

Juice on the Go for your Smart Phones and Mobile Devices

Poweradd iphone smartphone pda battery solar charger battery packThese days, a smartphone is an indispensable tool for a serious shooter. Smartphones can forecast the weather, direct you to the range, map your terrain, calculate your ballistics, photograph your targets, and even measure wind velocity (with a $35.00 plug-in impeller).

Having all those capabilities is great… until your battery goes flat. Even the most advanced smartphone on the planet is nothing but a useless paperweight when you run out of juice. Thankfully there’s an affordable fix for that problem — back-up Li-ion battery packs with built-in solar chargers.

There are a variety of external power-packs on the market, some with solar panels, some without. These will charge smartphones, tablets, PDAs, and other mobile devices. We like the units with solar chargers because they can recover a little energy when you’re outdoors. You still need to plug them in to get a full charge BEFORE before you head to the range. But once fully charged, these back-up battery devices can get your smartphone back in action and keep it running all day long.

Poweradd iphone smartphone pda battery solar charger battery pack

We like the Poweradd portable chargers*. These feature lithium-ion batteries, solar panels, and tough weatherproof shells. We’ve tried two models, the 8000 mAh Apollo 3 ($29.99, dual-port), and the original 7200 mAh Apollo ($19.99, single port). We purchased the 7200 mAh Poweradd (Photo above) before its third-generation bigger brother was offered. The original 7200 mAh Apollo has served us well. It can fully charge most smartphones a couple times, or smaller tablets once. As long as you make sure the Poweradd is fully charged before you leave home (since the solar charger is slow and secondary), this unit does everything it claims. This editor’s first-generation Poweradd Apollo has done yeoman duty for many months now. It has revived both an iPhone and a tablet. If I were to purchase a Poweradd unit now, I would get the Apollo 3, mainly because it offers two (2) charging ports compared to one (1) on the original Apollo. That lets you charge two devices at once.

Poweradd iphone smartphone pda battery solar charger battery pack

Poweradd iphone smartphone pda battery solar charger battery pack

7200 mAh 8000 mAh 10000 mAh 23000 mAh

* If you need even more power, consider the Poweradd Pro. This 23000 mAh powerpack offers Multi-Voltage (5V 12V 16V 19V) output, and has enough juice to run a modern laptop. It comes with a complete set of jacks/cables so it can work with almost any device. This kind of capability doesn’t come cheap — the Poweradd Pro sells for $109.99, more than five times the cost of our 7200 mAh Apollo.

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February 17th, 2015

Brain Teaser: Do You Know the Rule of the Square?

wind drift wind reading 6mmbr rule of the squareHorizontal Wind-Drift vs. Distance
OK, here’s a challenge question for you.
Let’s see if you get it right.

Q: If the wind is blowing 10 mph from 9 o’clock and if my horizontal wind deflection is 0.7 inches at 100 yards, what is the horizontal drift at 1000 yards?

You may be thinking, “Well, since the target is ten times more distant, the wind-drift should be around 7 inches, maybe a little more since the bullet will be slowing down.” That sounds reasonable, right?

WRONG.

As you move from near to far, the increase in lateral deflection (from a 90° crosswind) is (roughly speaking) a function of the square of the multiple of distance. If your target is two times farther away, you use the square of two, namely four. If your target is five times farther away, you use the square of five, or twenty-five. In this example, the increased wind drift (from 100 to 1000 yards) is at least 0.7″ times (10 X 10) — over 70 inches (give or take a few inches depending on bullet type). We call that the Rule of the Square. This Rule lets you make a quick approximation of the windage correction needed at any yardage.

Precision Shooting and the Rule of the Square
I was going through some back issues of Precision Shooting Magazine and found many references to the Rule of the Square. This made me curious — I wondered how well the Rule really stacked up against modern ballistics programs. Accordingly, I ran some examples through the JBM Ballistics Trajectory Calculator, one of the best web-based ballistics programs. To my surprise, the Rule of the Square does a pretty good job of describing things.

EXAMPLE ONE — .308 Win (100 to 400 Yards)
For a 168gr Sierra MK (.308), leaving the muzzle at 2700 fps, the JBM-predicted values* are as follows, with a 10 mph, 9 o’clock crosswind (at sea level, 65° F, Litz G7 BC):

Drift at 100: 0.8 MOA (0.8″)
Drift at 200: 1.6 MOA (3.3″)
Drift at 400: 3.4 MOA (14.4″)

Here you can see how the Rule of the Square works. The rule says our drift at 200 yards should be about FOUR times the drift at 100. It the example above, 0.8″ times 4 is 3.2″, pretty darn close to the JBM prediction of 3.3″. Quoting Precision Shooting: “Note that the deflections at 100 yards are typically a quarter of those at 200; lateral deflections increase as the square of the range”. Precision Shooting, June 2000, p. 16.

EXAMPLE TWO — .284 Win (100 to 1000 Yards)
For a .284 Win load, with the slippery Berger 180gr Target Hybrids, the Rule of the Square still works. Here we’ll input a 2750 fps velocity, Litz G7 BC, 10 mph, 9 o’clock crosswind, (same 65° temp at sea level). With these variables, JBM predicts:

Drift at 100: 0.5 MOA (0.5″)
Drift at 500: 2.5 MOA (13.3″)
Drift at 1000: 5.9 MOA (61.3″)

Again, even with a higher BC bullet, at 1000 yards we end up with something reasonably close to the 100-yard deflection (i.e. 0.5″) multiplied by (10×10), i.e. 50 inches. The Rule of the Square alerts you to the fact that the effects of crosswinds are MUCH greater at very long range. In this example, our JBM-calculated drift at 1000 is 61.3″ — that’s over 100 times the 100-yard lateral drift, even though the distance has only increased 10 times.

Note that, even with a 5 mph 90° sidewind, the “Rule of the Square” still applies. The 1000-yard lateral deflection in inches is still over 100 times the lateral deflection at 100 yards.


Why This All Matters (Even in the Age of Smartphones)
wind drift wind reading 6mmbr rule of the squareNow, some would say, “Why Should I Care About the Rule of the Square? My iPhone has a Ballistics App that does all my thinking for me”. Fair enough, but knowledge of this basic Rule of the Square enables a shooter to make an informed guess about necessary windage even without a come-up sheet, as long as he knows the distance AND can fire a sighter at 100 or 200 yards as a baseline.

For example, if I see empirically that I need 1″ windage correction at 100 yards, then I know that at 600 yards I need at least roughly (6 x 6 x 1″) or 36 total inches of drift correction, or 6 MOA. (To be precise, 1 MOA = 1.047″ at 100 yards). I can figure that out instantly, even without a ballistics chart, and even if my Smartphone’s battery is dead.

*Values shown are as displayed on the JBM-figured trajectory tables. The numbers can be slightly imprecise because JBM rounds off to one decimal place for both inches and MOA.

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January 3rd, 2014

Texas and California Lead Online Ammo Sales

Texas is a haven for hunters and shooting enthusiasts, so we’re not surprised that the Lone Star State leads the nation in online ammo sales. However, you might be surprised that California, with its liberal, anti-gun politicians, is a close second. Yes, California was the second-most active source of online ammo purchases in 2013, according to statistics from LuckyGunner.com, one of the nation’s leading online ammo vendors. In fact, California was number one in 2012. For 2013, Texas edged California for the top spot, followed by Florida, Michigan, and (surprise) New York.

online ammo sales

online ammo sales

More Online Ammo Buyers are Using Mobile Devices (Tablets and Smart Phones)
More and more people are connecting to the internet via mobile devices. And, apparently, they are using those devices to shop for ammo. Luckygunner.com saw a significant increase in orders from mobile devices in 2013. Fully 22.7% of Luckygunner’s visits were made via mobile devices in 2013, compared to 18.8% in the preceding year. AccurateShooter.com has seen a similar rise in the number of visitors connecting to our site via mobile devices (particularly smartphones).

online ammo sales

Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo, News 1 Comment »
December 24th, 2013

Free SHOT Show Mobile App for Smart Phones and Tablets

Headed to SHOT Show in January? Then you should download the FREE SHOT Show Mobile App. Available for iOS (Apple), Android OS, and Blackberry devices, this App will really make it easier to plan your SHOT Show schedule, and navigate the floor of the Sands Convention Center. The App includes an interactive map that can direct you from your current location to your next destination. Arrange your meetings with a handy scheduling calendar. And you can search for any SHOT exhibitor by name or product category. In addition, the App lists major show events as well as important new products.

SHOT Show 2014 Mobile App iOS Apple Android smartphone iphone

GET FREE Apple (iOS) App | GET FREE Android OS App

The Free SHOT Show App lets you do some very cool things with your smartphone. You can contact exhibitors directly through the App to request appointments or callbacks. You can take notes while visiting a vendor’s booth or attending a seminar. Of course you can schedule your agenda, and see an entire day’s events in a glance. But perhaps the best function of all is the “Smart Route”. This allows you to create the most efficient point to point route from one booth location to another.

SHOT Show 2014 Mobile App iOS Apple Android smartphone iphone

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November 18th, 2013

Get FREE Where-to-Shoot Apps for Smart Phones

Range Locator Where to Shoot AppLooking for a shooting range? There’s an App for that. The National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF) has released free Where-To-Shoot mobile Apps that locate shooting ranges. This App is offered for Android devices as well as Apple iPhones and iPads.

Available for free in the Apple App Store and Google’s Android App Store, the Where-To-Shoot Apps puts a comprehensive directory of shooting ranges in the palm of your hand. These Apps also include tips for shooters, news, and firearm-safety information.

Users can search by current location or zip code and find specifics about each range, including activities offered, directions, and contact info. The App Databases are updated regularly.

CLICK HERE for Apple iPhone and iPad App.

CLICK HERE for FREE Android App.

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November 16th, 2013

New Caldwell Chronograph Displays Shot Data on iPhone or iPad

Android OS ChronographCaldwell will be introducing a new chronograph in early 2014. By outward appearance, this is a fairly conventional unit, with optical (light-tripped) sensors and “V”-profile sky-screens with plastic diffusers supported by rods. However, the big news is the data output. The new Caldwell Ballistic Precision Chronograph can display shot data and string averages on iOS devices such as the iPhone and iPad. A software App allows you to save the data on your iPhone, and you can even export the data via email. That’s handy if you want to archive your test results in a spreadsheet.

Along with the iPhone/iPad display, Caldwell’s new chronograph features a front-facing display screen on the green, barbell-shaped chrono body. As with most other chronographs, the Caldwell unit records velocity of each shot, average velocity (of shot string), Standard Deviation, and Extreme Spread (difference in FPS of fastest shot and slowest shot). One nice feature of Caldwell’s new chronograph is that it can be calibrated. That sounds promising, but remember that to calibrate any chronograph you need test ammo with a very accurately determined baseline velocity. In any case, Caldwell asserts that this new Chronograph is more accurate than some other units on the market, because it runs a faster processor and because it has the calibration option. We haven’t tested the unit yet so we can’t verify claims of improved accuracy.

Android OS Chronograph

The Caldwell Ballistic Precision Chronograph comes as a complete package with carrying case, sky-screens, and data cable. No price has been announced, but we expect it to be under $150.00. Incandescent lamps, which are suspended above the sensors, will be available as an optional accessory. These lights permit the unit to be used indoors.

Android OS ChronographAndroid OS Capability in the Future?
Currently, the new Caldwell Chronograph is only able to send data to iOS (Apple) devices. However, the data cable is not Apple-specific, so there is a chance that we may see Android OS compatibility at some time in the future. At SHOT Show in January 2014 we’ll ask the Caldwell technicians about compatibility with Android smartphones and tablets.

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July 17th, 2012

Monitor Balance Beam with Magnified Image on SmartPhone

If you use a balance-beam scale to weigh powder and reloading components, here’s a clever way to magnify the view of the beam tip. Of course you can use an old-fashioned magnifying glass, clamped in place, to upsize the view. But now there’s a parallax-free, electronic solution that works for anyone with an iPhone or Android OS smartphone.

Forum member Allan E. (aka “1066”) discovered that he could use the camera on his smartphone to display and magnify the image of a balance-beam tip. This works via a Magnifying Glass App you can download for free. Just turn on the smartphone, activate the Magnifying Glass App and zoom-in to suit your preference. Alan explains: “This saves those tired eyes. It’s much more accurate because there’s no parallax — the lens is directly in line with the pointer so we can see [the pointer] off the screen from any angle. It’s a much clearer view, and it costs nothing.”

You’ll need to fabricate some kind of stand or clamp for the phone. Allan created a smartphone mount with a bit of wire, rubber bands, and a bullet box. You can see the system working in the video below. (The video starts by showing a webcam + laptop balance-beam monitor system. The Smartphone system demo begins at the 1:30″ time-mark.)

Magnifying Glass Apps AndroidMagnifying Glass Apps for iPhones and Android Phones
There are numerous ‘magnifying glass’ programs for Apple and Android smartphones that use the built-in camera. Most include a zoom function and auto-focus. You might try a couple different Apps and see which works best for you. Some perform better in low light, while others resolve better. All of the following have 4-star or better user ratings:

Magnifying Glass App, (iBeam), Apple iPhone/iPod, $0.99.

Magnifying Glass App, (David Perry), Android OS, Free.

Magnifying Glass App, (Perun Labs), Android OS, Free.

Magnify App, (Appd Lab), Android OS, Free.

Ultra-Magnifier +, (zapDroid), Android OS, include Flashlight Function, Free.

Story find by Boyd Allen. We welcome readers submissions.
Permalink - Videos, New Product, Optics 1 Comment »
November 14th, 2011

FREE Quickoffice App for Android Devices — Nov. 14th ONLY

For the remainder of today, November 14th, the Android OS Quickoffice Pro App is FREE for the taking. That’s right, this App, normally priced at $14.99, costs zero, zip, nada. This productivity App lets you create, edit, and view Word, Excel, and PowerPoint files. The Quickoffice Pro App also includes a PDF Viewer for Adobe Acrobat files. Remember this FREE OFFER is good for today only on Amazon.com!

Quickoffice Pro Android App

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February 18th, 2011

Lapua Offers FREE Ballistics App for Java-Compatible Phones

Free Lapua Ballistics AppLapua now offers a FREE ballistics program for modern smart phones that run Java Apps. (Unfortunately, that excludes Apple iPhones and Android OS phones, but Lapua says that the majority of smartphones run Java). The program calculates drift and drop, and it corrects for altitude, temp, air pressure, and shot angle. The Lapua Ballistics App also includes a database of Lapua bullet profiles with ultra-reliable radar-derived Ballistic Coefficients. Sound good? Now go get your smart phone. The program must be downloaded with a mobile phone. Open a web browser in your smart-phone and navigate to www.lapua.com/ballistics and choose the correct version for your phone.

Lapua’s exterior ballistic software for mobile phones is capable of predicting trajectories in real time with extreme accuracy. Using Lapua Ballistics, there is no need for checking tables and calculating cosines for inclination compensation (you still have to input the angle). The program also compensates for the effect of cartridge temperature on muzzle velocity and the effect of atmospheric conditions on the projectile’s trajectory.

Lapua Ballistics is based on precise Doppler Radar measurements of actual bullet drag — professional data available only for Lapua bullets. Lapua Ballistics can be installed on all smartphones supporting basic Java (Java MIDP 2.0). NOTE: Apple iPhone and Android platforms do not support Java ME.

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