Eurooptic vortex burris nightforce sale

teslong borescope digital camera barrel monitor

As an Amazon Associate, this site earns a commission from Amazon sales.

June 30th, 2007

Williamsport 1000-Yard World Open July 14-15

If you want to test your long-range shooting skills against some of the best shooters in the country (including our own Jason Baney), head to Pennsylvania in two weeks for the Williamsport World Open. Shooters will compete in Light Gun and Heavy Gun classes for a host of prizes including scopes, actions, and barrels. Sponsors include Nightforce Scopes, BAT Machine, and Bartlein, Hart, and Krieger barrel-makers, among many others. In addition, the Original Pennsylvania 1000 Yard Club will give $1000.00 CASH to anyone breaking the 3.151″ Ten (10) Shot Heavy Benchrest Class World Record during this event. Also for 2007, this will apply as well to anyone breaking the 3.835″ Light Gun group record.

Williamsport 1000-yard club World Open

Last year Jason won the Heavy Gun championship shooting his 16-lb 6BR with Reloader 15 and Clinch River 106s. That was an amazing accomplishment considering he was competing against 60- and 70-pound guns driving ultra-high BC bullets with “big boomer” cartridges. The schedule of events will be: Saturday Morning – Light Gun Match One; Saturday Afternoon – Heavy Gun Match One; Sunday Morning – Heavy Gun Match Two; Sunday Afternoon – Light Gun Match Two. Complete Event info, including Course of Fire, Rules, and a list of nearby motels, is found on the World Open Webpage, or contact Matt Dienes, 724-479-0790.

Permalink News No Comments »
June 30th, 2007

Ricochet Danger Shown in Video

If you have ever done much action pistol shooting at close range on steel targets, you’ll know about the hazards of ricochets and bullet splashback. That’s why you should only shoot low-velocity rounds with soft lead or frangible bullets when shooting at relatively close range. In this video a rather ignorant (yet lucky) fellow demonstrates what NOT to do with a large-caliber rifle (a 50 BMG apparently). He shoots at a steel target about 70 yards away and a bullet fragment comes back directly at him. He was lucky enough that the ricochet just smacked his left ear muff. Another inch to the right and he could have lost his eye… or worse.

Click HERE to WATCH Video (LiveLeak)
ricochet gun Video.
The video should be self-starting if you have the Flash plug-in.

Lesson learned–never underestimate the destructive power of rifle-launched projectiles. What appears a “safe distance” from steel may actually be well within the danger zone.

Permalink - Videos No Comments »
June 30th, 2007

Shop Vise Now at Huge Savings

Brownell's Multi-ViseThis deal is almost too good to be true. MidwayUSA is currently offering its Wheeler Engineering Rotating Shop Vise (item 666-974) for just thirty bucks even ($30.00). That’s $39.99 off the regular $69.99. This unit has a rotating head that can turn 360°, then lock in place with a built-in clamp. It mirrors the design of the $249.97 “Multi-Vise” sold by Note, with this design the head only rotates. It does not tilt or swivel. But it’s still way more vesatile than a conventional shop vise and it does pretty much anything the green $250 Multi-vise (photo right) will do at less than 1/8th the price. If you need a swiveling vise for your loading bench, here’s your opportunity. The cast iron Wheeler vise weighs 18 pounds and has 3-1/2″ jaws that open to 4-3/4″.

Wheeler Engineering Swivel Vise

Permalink News No Comments »
June 29th, 2007

New Lightweight Front Rest for F-Class

At the request of Larry Bartholome, current member and former captain of the U.S. F-Class team, Butch Lambert of Shadetree Engineering & Accuracy (S.E.A.), has designed and fabricated a lightweight yet stable front rest prototype. Larry wanted a unit that was less burdensome to haul between firing lines than the typical cast-iron or “heavy metal” front pedestal. If all goes well, the new aluminum Lambert design will replace the rest shown in the photo below. (That’s Larry with his spectacular “Captain America” Shehane red, white, and blue MBR Tracker stock.)

Larry Batholome F-Class Shehane Tracker MBR

Other than the steel center hub, the rest is built from aircraft-grade 6061 T-6 aluminum, which can be TIG-welded and hard-anodized. To keep weight down, the three horizontal legs are hollow tubes with flutes or slots milled top and bottom. Butch sent us these photos of the new rest, noting: “It weighs 2.25 lbs without the top. I set one of our unfinished rest tops on it. I moved the back leg to the front to get it out of the way. Larry is ‘wrong handed’, so I made it left-handed. I hope to get it TIG-welded together next week and plated. It is definitely easy to lug around, but I do consider it too light for benchrest shooting. For F-Class, under a 22-lb rifle, Larry believes it should work well.”

Lambert ShadeTree Engineering F-Class rest

Lambert ShadeTree Engineering F-Class rest

Permalink Gear Review No Comments »
June 29th, 2007

Detecting Excessive Pressure in Cases

With the relentless pursuit of more velocity and the “next higher node” by many reloaders, it is important to pause and think about safety. And one has to remember that most brass will not hold up to high pressure the way Lapua or RWS does. Many readers have asked us–“How does one detect excess pressures.” Well first, one can obviously monitor the primer pockets and measure the diameter of the case near the web–excessive stretch or pocket loosening is a sure sign you’re running too hot. There are also many visual signs of over-pressure which you can see. Reader ScottyS provided this comparison photo of cases, showing the tell-tale signs of over-pressure.

rifle cartridge brass pressure signs

Scotty tells us: “These samples were from a lot of Federal soft-point hunting ammunition that were fired in a custom .308 with a chamber on the tight side (although still allowing a .308 Winchester ‘GO’ gauge). Among the pressure symptoms were heavy recoil, sticky bolt lift, and the left case had to be manually removed from the boltface. This demonstrates why: 1) you should never assume that all lots of factory ammo are the same (and safe); and 2) you should ALWAYS wear eye protection. This also shows how high pressure can spike once you approach maximum load levels.” Scotty noted that there was a big pressure difference between the left case and the right case, although both were from the same lot of ammo. So take heed–always take precautions when testing new ammo, even if it is factory-loaded.

Permalink Tech Tip No Comments »
June 29th, 2007

Gun Marketing: Is the Latest Always the Greatest?

At, we like to see innovative new designs, particularly when they allow shooter to perform critical functions with greater precision and efficiency. Does that mean, however, that we need to replace our rifles every couple of years, as we might upgrade a kitchen appliance or cell phone? Noted writer Col. Jeff Cooper cautions that we should not always buy into the latest fad or marketing hype when it comes to rifles:

“Of all sorts of possessions, the personal firearm is the most nearly unique. This is because of its permanence….This makes the marketing of firearms a frustrating enterprise.

[T]he marketer must aim at making a prospective purchaser unhappy with what he already has. You wear out clothes and automobiles, you drink up wines, you shoot up ammunition, but your gun is still there, just as desirable and efficient as it ever was, assuming that you chose it wisely in the first place.”

Cooper’s words are worth considering. Readers of this website do like to learn about new products, and new rifles. But at the same time, we should not forget the value of classic designs that have stood the test of time. So if you have a great older rifle–shoot it, don’t sell it.

Permalink News No Comments »
June 28th, 2007

More "Long Dasher" Info (6-6.5×47 Lapua Improved)

There was so much interest in Sunbuilder’s 6-6.5×47 Improved Varmint rifle that we got Scott to photograph his new cartridge. With a reamer from Dave Kiff of Pacific, Tool & Gauge, this wildcat cartridge adds about 2.0 grains capacity to the 6.5×47 necked down to 6mm. The case certainly is impressive with that 40° shoulder:

That extra two grains of capacity allows Scott (Sunbuilder) to get some very impressive velocities. Scott reports that while his most accurate load has been N160 pushing the Berger 105 Match BT at about 3115, he has pushed other 105s close to 3300 with H4350 and he thinks there’s an accuracy node around 3225 fps. (WARNING–Don’t even attempt to reach these kind of speeds with an unimproved case–you won’t succeed and you could hurt yourself in the process!) With the potential for those kinds of speeds, Scott is thinking of trying another barrel that might give better accuracy with the Hornady 105s. With its plastic tip, the Amax offers better expansion that conventional high-BC bullets. As a final note, Scott wanted us to mention the project smith: “Neil Jones of ‘Neil Jones Custom Products’ built this gun, and did a really fine job! Neil also built me a set of custom dies to match.”

Permalink Reloading No Comments »
June 28th, 2007

Cerrosafe Casting Material On Sale

In order to get exact dimensions for custom dies, and to monitor changes in the throat of your rifle, you may want to make a chamber cast. With such casts you can determine the exact dimensions of your chamber, throat, and bore (including land/groove diameters). Most chamber casts are made with Cerrosafe, a very unique compound that is ideal for the job. To cast a chamber, Cerrosafe is poured into the chamber and the first part of the throat. As it hardens it actually shrinks, allowing you to remove the cast from your barreled action. But, then what good is an undersized cast? Well, that is the magic of Cerrosafe. As it goes into its final hardening process, it “grows” back to the true bore/chamber dimensions. Brownell’s explains: “Cerrosafe shrinks during the first 30 minutes of cooling and then at the end of an hour, is EXACTLY chamber size. Cerrosafe melts between 158°-190° F.” To learn more about chamber casting with Cerrosafe, Click here for Gun collector Mark Trope’s illustrated guide to chamber casting, found on

cerrosafe casting alloy

MidwayUSA has 1/2-pound bars of Cerrosafe Casting Alloy on sale for just $9.99, through the end of July. That’s $8.00 off the normal $17.99 price–quite a deal. As long as you keep the alloy free of contaminents the Cerrosafe can be re-used many times, though we advise you keep your chamber cast as a reference as long as you own the rifle.

Permalink Gunsmithing, Hot Deals 1 Comment »
June 27th, 2007

New 6-6.5×47 AI Varminter and Custom Spotter Mount

Forum member Sunbuilder unveiled his new 6-6.5×47 Lapua Improved Varmint rifle today in our Forum. The stock is a beautiful hardwood laminate from Richard Franklin. It’s a rig to envy, with a Stiller Diamondback action, Lilja 30″ 8-twist barrel, and a NightForce 8x32x56 NXS on top. First class components all the way round. Sunbuilder (Scott) has had excellent success already–his two longest groundhog hits were at 778 and 810 yards. Scott writes: “I started hunting with my new rig last week, my first full custom rifle. It was inspired by–I’m not sure if I should thank you guys or curse you.” Scott has already seen the potential of his new cartridge: “My improved version of the 6×47 Lapua has a 40° shoulder and reduced body taper. Dave Kiff of PT&G did my reamer design, and he dubbed it the ‘Long Dasher’. The increased velocity potential of this cartridge is partially due to the slightly increased case capacity. The load I am shooting now is 40.5gr N160, Berger 105gr Match BT, .010″ jam, CCI BR4, .002″ neck tension at 3115 fps. This has an ES under 15 fps, and it will group under 2″ at 500 yards if conditions hold. This ‘Long Dasher’ (6-6.5×47) seems to have a lot of potential (and that’s an understatement).”

“I am learning to appreciate how small wind changes at longer ranges can turn a 1″ group into a 4″ one with just a slight shift! I tried several powders (H4350, N160, N560, H4831sc), and primers (CCI 450, BR4, Rem 7 1/2, Fed 205Ms). I got better velocity with H4350, but my barrel likes the N160. I did find a [high-speed] node with H4350.”

A Better Mount for the Spotter and Rangefinder
Scott designed and fabricated a very slick set-up to hold his Zeiss spotting scope and Leica CRF RangeFinder. He’s built a combo bracket that holds both units rock steady, with a parallel line of sight (same axis and elevation). Smart. Very smart. Scott explains: “I built a mount to connect my rangefinder to my spotting scope. The mount can be adjusted, so the spotting scope and rangefinder are both centered on the same object. The only way I have found to get repeatable long-range readings is to make them from a stable base.” Scott, we think you’ve got a winner here with your innovative and clever design. (And we like the idea of a 6-6.5×47 with a 40° shoulder.)

sunbuilder spotter and rangefinder mount

Permalink Optics, Tech Tip No Comments »
June 27th, 2007

New NRA Rulebooks Available Online

Asa Yam, Asst. Moderator of the excellent forum, let us know that the new NRA Rulebooks are now online. Asa added: “Well, all but two, and they’re forthcoming.” Here is a link to the general Rulebook webpage. For the High Power Rules (which cover F-Class), Click HERE to download a .pdf file with the index page. Within that .pdf file are hyperlinks that take you to the individual chapters. If you wish to purchase hard copies of the Rule Books, they are available from the NRA Program Materials Center, for $2.50 per copy. The High Power Rifle Rulebook is item CH 16420.

Permalink Competition, News No Comments »
June 26th, 2007

Brownell's Acquires Sinclair International

Dateline: Montezuma, Iowa–6/26/2007
Late Breaking story–Today Frank Brownell confirmed that Brownell’s is acquiring the business and all the assets of Sinclair International, one of the leading vendors for the precision shooting market. More than a catalog and online retailer, Sinclair designs and manufactures many of its own specialty reloading products. Sinclair Int’l will function as a separate entity of Brownells, and Bill Gravatt will continue as the President of Sinclair Int’l. Sinclair will maintain its facilities and operations in Indiana, and will continue to sell its full product line as a Brownells-owned enterprise.

Here is the official press release:

Brownells® Purchases Sinclair International
Brownells, the World’s Largest Supplier of Firearms Accessories and Gunsmithing Tools, is extremely pleased and proud to announce the acquisition of Sinclair International, Inc. Sinclair International is one of the most respected manufacturers and suppliers of high quality reloading tools and shooting accessories in the world. Sinclair International, located in Indiana, is in its 22nd year and provides products to customers around the world. Brownells, operating out of Iowa, is in its 68th year and also supplies customers world-wide.

Brownells acquires Sinclair International

The joining of these two highly-respected companies brings to the firearms world the top-quality selection of the very best products, the exceptional personal customer service and the absolute guarantee of customer satisfaction their customers expect. ‘It was a very natural decision,’ said Frank Brownell, President of Brownells, ‘for us to join with another very successful, highly regarded company with the same values, the same care and concern for their customers and the same quality and service standards we hold dear.’ Bill Gravatt, president of Sinclair remarked that, ‘With Brownells Sinclair will continue providing the very best products available, and will strengthen our product line for shooters of all disciplines. I’m extremely excited about the future for both companies.’

Sinclair International will function as a separate entity of Brownells, and Bill Gravatt, will continue as the President of Sinclair International. The focus of Sinclair International will continue to be on providing high-quality products to their customers along with exceptional, personal customer service. For more information, please contact Larry Weeks at (641) 623-5401 or or Bill Gravatt at (260) 493-1858 or”

Permalink News No Comments »
June 26th, 2007

Shooting Sports More Popular Than Tennis, Softball, and Mountain Biking

Well folks, we don’t have to be shy about being shooting enthusiasts–you can join the crowd. A recent 3-year study shows shooting sports, including handgun, rifle, and shotgun disciplines, are more popular than many other highly advertised and promoted outdoor sports.

Photos courtesy NSSF

The National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF) commissioned a long-term study by American Sports Data (ASD), a consumer research firm for the sporting goods, fitness and health club industries. Statistics gathered over the past three years show that target shooting–with rifle, handgun and shotgun–is actually more popular than many pastimes historically considered mainstays of warm-season recreation.

In fact, participation in shooting sports tops tennis, softball, jet skiing, water skiing, mountain biking, most team sports and virtually all of the technical sports like rock climbing and kayaking, according to the most recent numbers from ASD. ASD has tracked rifle and shotgun shooting participation for many years, and began tracking handgun target shooting in 2003.

ASD research shows more than 18 million Americans enjoy the shooting sports. In a 2006 survey commissioned by NSSF, 17 percent of Americans, or about 50 million people, said they had been shooting with a rifle in the past two years. Fifteen percent went target shooting with a handgun and eight percent with a shotgun.

In overall numbers, California is No. 1 with over 2.1 million shooters, including the most rifle, handgun and shotgun shooters of any state. Texas, Pennsylvania, New York and Ohio follow. Per capita, ASD shows Idaho as the most avid shooting state (18 of every 100 people participate), followed by Utah, Wyoming, Montana and Arkansas.

For more info on the ASD survey, visit the NSSF web site, The NSSF also offers an interactive database showing shooting ranges and clubs nationwide (See AccurateShooter Bulletin, March 18, 2007).

Permalink News No Comments »