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January 27th, 2010

Good Barrel Care Article in Shooting Sports Digital Edition

Shooting Sports Lohman coverChip Lohman, Managing Editor of Shooting Sports USA Magazine, has authored an excellent article on barrel maintenance and cleaning. Chip’s article, Let the BARREL Tell You — Match Barrel Care, Part I, appears in the January 2010 edition of Shooting Sports USA, which is FREE online, in a digital e-zine format.

Chip Lohman is a talented writer, an NRA-Certified Instructor, and an active shooter. Like most writers, he maintains a healthy sense of curiosity. The debate about the proper care of a match barrel is a hot one, spiked with folklore and old wives’ tales, Lohman said. He and his staff set out to set the record straight: “We tried to interject some science into the discussion of cleaning a match barrel,” he explained. In his article, Lohman writes:

Why worry about a little barrel fouling when the throat is subjected to a brutal 5,600° F volcano at 55,000 PSI? To investigate these and other questions about taking care of a match barrel, we spoke with a dozen experts and share their knowledge in this first of a series of articles.

After listening to folks who shoot, build barrels or manufacture cleaning solvents for a living, we concluded that even the experts each have their own unique recommendations on how to care for a match barrel. But they all agree on one thing— the gun will tell you what it likes best. Because the life expectancy of a match barrel is about 1,500 to 2,500 rounds, the objectives of cleaning one should include: preserve accuracy, slow the erosion and remove fouling—all without damaging the gun. This article doesn’t claim that one cleaning method is better than the next. Rather, we set out to interject a little science into the discussion and to share some lessons learned from experts in the field.

Shooting Sports Lohman Barrel

CLICK HERE to read complete Barrel Care Article in Shooting Sports USA
CLICK HERE to read latest February 2010 Edition of Shooting Sports USA

Permalink - Articles, Competition, Tech Tip No Comments »
January 27th, 2010

SHOT Show Report: New Howa 1500 Varminter with Bench-Friendly Stock

Howa previewed some impressive new varmint models at SHOT Show 2010. We liked the new Howa 1500 Thumbhole. This features a skeletonized, laminate varmint stock with a nice wide, flat fore-arm. The fore-arm is about 2.25″ wide and is completely flat on the bottom. Slab sides run almost all the way back to the action. This provides a very stable platform that should track well in the bags. Varminters put lots of rounds down-range, so barrel heat can be an issue. To help keep your barrel cool, the fore-arm has four “Buick” vents on each side (left and right), plus SIX large vents cut in the bottom.

Behind the action there is a comfortable pistol grip carved at a good angle for shooting from the bench. It has a nice palm swell at the bottom but is narrow enough at the top that you can get your thumb around for secure, properly aligned grip. I tried out this stock and it was very comfortable. The slightly raised comb was shaped nicely and the grip really felt good in the hand. The middle section of the stock is completely carved away (presumably to save weight). However on the last 5″ or so, the stock has a conventional section on the bottom. This provides a solid platform to ride the bags.

The new Howa 1500 Thumbhole Varminter will cost between $695 and $830 depending on chambering. It will be offered in both short action and long action versions. Available chamberings are: 204 Ruger, 223 Rem, 22-250, 243 Win, 6.5×55, 25-06, 270 Win, 308 Win, 30-06, 300 Win Mag, 7mm Rem Mag, and 338 Win Mag. For more information, contact Legacy Sports Int’l, USA Distributor for Howa rifles.

Permalink Hunting/Varminting, New Product 3 Comments »
January 27th, 2010

SHOT Show Report: Freedom Arms Single-Shot Model 2008

At SHOT Show 2010, Freedom mod 2008Wyoming’s Freedom Arms showcased its Model 2008 break-open precision pistol. This handsome pistol should prove popular with handgun hunters and handgun silhouette shooters. The gun is offered in 10″, 15″ and 16″ barrel lengths and with long or short wood forearms.

The Freedom Model 2008 is beautifully machined, and contains many carefully engineered features to ensure positive lock-up and safe operation. In the video below, Bob Baker of Freedom Arms explains how the locking mechanism, extractor, and rebounding hammer work. Baker also demonstrates how to switch barrels. As with the Thompson/Center Encore and Contender pistols, the Freedom Model 2008 can shoot many different chamberings from one platform, giving it great versatility. Baker tells us that, when chambered in 7mm BR, Freedom’s Model 2008 can approach half-MOA accuracy with tailored handloads.

Freedom Arms 2008 Pistol

The Freedom Model 2008 starts at $1495.00, which includes one barrel and forearm. Nine (9) chamberings are currently offered: .223 Rem, 6.5×55, 7mm BR, 7mm-08, .308 Win, 338 Federal, 357 Magnum, 357 Max, 375 Win. CLICK HERE for a Model 2008 Spec Sheet (PDF file).

YouTube Preview Image

You can see more photos on the Quinn Brothers’ GunBlast Website:

Full Report from 2008 (30+ photos)
Breech Closeup Photo
Hammer Closeup Photo
2010 Update Photo

Permalink - Videos, Hunting/Varminting, New Product 6 Comments »