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October 5th, 2012

Rory Jacobs — 10-Year-Old Benchrest Phenom

We all know that young people are the future of our sport. Well here’s a tale of a talented young shooter who is already “running with the Big Dogs” at the ripe old age of 10 years. Rory Jacobs, son of Forum member Tom Jacobs, recently competed at the IBS 600-yard Nationals in St. Louis. Rory won the Junior Nationals title and placed 14th in the Two-Gun Overall, finishing ahead of dozens of highly skilled adult shooters with decades of experience. Among all shooters (of any age) at the Nationals, Rory had the sixth-best Heavy Gun score and placed seventh overall in Heavy Gun. This kid has talent, that’s for sure. Of course, it helps to have a father who runs a shooting range. The Jacobs family owns and operates the Vapor Trail Valley Shooting Range,, near Trenton, Missouri.

That handsome rifle was smithed by Jay Cutright, and stocked by Tom Meredith (the stock is one of Tom’s). The rifle features a BAT action and Benchmark barrel chambered in 6mm Dasher (.270″ neck) . At the Nationals, Rory shot Berger bullets pushed by Alliant Reloder 15 powder and CCI 450 primers. The front rest is from Randolph Machine.

Rory Began Shooting at Age Three
Rory started shooting and hunting at a very young age. He got his first .22LR rimfire rifle when he was three years old, and he started going on hunting trips with his father at the same young age. Within a few years he was a skilled hunter, harvesting a turkey and a couple of deer at age 6. When he was very young, his father took him prairie dog shooting several times. That’s when Rory got “hooked” on long-range shooting. He got involved in competitive shooting at age 9 at some rimfire “fun matches”. He moved up to the big leagues a year later, entering his first IBS match this spring (2012). Amazingly, at his first-ever IBS 600-yard match, Rory won Light Gun class overall and he posted the best LG group aggregate. Not bad for a 10-year-old! And how many folks, young or old, can boast that they won their first-ever benchrest match? This kid’s a natural. Not surprisingly, he is currently leading the IBS in the race for Junior 600-yard Shooter of the Year.

A well-rounded young man, Rory has a variety of interests. Along with shooting, Rory enjoys woodworking and he plays in a summer baseball league. He’s a modest, church-going youngster, whose character impressed all those who met him in St. Louis at the Nationals. When asked what he liked most about the National Championship experience, Rory replied: “I liked spending time with my dad, and I really liked helping other people.” Rory added: “The ride home in Gene Ford’s motorhome was cool.” The video shows Rory shooting at 600 yards.

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October 5th, 2012

Match Report: NIOA Savage Cup in Australia

Report by Ian Pavy (aka “ThunderDownunder” in Forum)
The NIOA Savage Cup for F-TR was held in South Australia at the SARA Lower Light range on the last weekend in September 2012. The three day event covered eight ranges from 300 to 800 metres. It was a history making competition being the first time ever in Australia that F-TR was included into a State Championship, (Queens) event.

Australia Savage Cup SeamanCLICK HERE for Savage Cup Results.

Prior to the event, Australian team trials were conducted under the watchful eye of the Team Captain, Linda Shehan. Next year, Australia will be sending a F-Open and F-TR team to Raton, New Mexico for the F-Class World Championships. The formation and inclusion of F-TR has been supported by the NRAA and is a great step forward for Australia’s inclusion into international F-Class events. Those of us that make it into the team look forward to meeting up with our international friends, a lot of whom we got to know through the Forum. Look out guys the Aussies are coming over to compete!

Australia Savage Cup SeamanAlan Seaman Tops Field
The NIOA Savage Cup had as first prize a Savage F-TR rifle so it was a hard fought competition with Alan Seaman, (Gosford Rifle Club) taking the prize and the honor of being the first winner in a F-TR championship event in Australia. Alan’s aggregate score of 456.25 was well ahead of Ian Pavy, (Murray Bridge Rifle Club) and Greg Warrian, (Tumut Rifle Club) who both scored 438. Ian won second place on X-count over Greg in third place. These two shooters seesawed back and forth over the three days of competition.

Alan showed remarkable wind reading skills over the three days which included winds up to 50 kph and at times heavy mirage. Alan may be wind coaching the Aussie F T/R team at Raton and from what I have seen we could not be in better hands. Alan’s score of 456.25 would have placed him third outright in F-Open. Scoring Note: The Savage Cup featured an ICFRA target with 6 as the highest ring count and a half-MOA X-ring. The Australian system of 60 points for ten shots can be equated to American scoring (100 points for ten shots) by adding 40 to each Aussie range score.

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October 5th, 2012

How Bullets are Made — Inside Look at the Barnes Factory

Barnes Bullets factory machinesBarnes Bullets has produced some videos showing the processes used to make Barnes’ popular TSX (all-copper), Match Burner (lead-core, copper jacket), and Varmint Grenade (copper jacket, powdered metal core) bullets.

Drawing Copper Wire for TSX Bullets
The first video features the TSX. These all-copper bullets start by drawing and cutting solid copper wire into slugs. The material is first drawn down to the correct diameter and then cut to the proper weight on a large industrial shear press. Great care is taken to ensure the most consistent weight possible. The machines are checked frequently. The video below show how copper wire is sized (in the first black box on the green machine) and then travels over a series of rollers to the cutting station.

Extruding Lead Wire for Bullet Cores
The second video shows the extrusion of lead core material for Barnes’ Originals and Match Burner bullets. First, soft lead is melted into 16″ long by 2 ½” round ingots. The ingots are then fed into a large steel tube and hydraulically forced through a cone at about 3500 psi, producing lead wire. This extrusion process makes the lead wire to the correct diameter. The lead wire is then fed into a cutter that chops it into the correct weight. After cutting, the lead cores are sorted and again fed into the bullet presses.

Powdered Metal Mixing for Varmint Grenade Bullets
The third video shows the mixing of metal for the composite cores in Varmint Grenade bullets. This powdered metal core is one reason why Varmint Grenades fragment so explosively on impact. The core for these bullets (identical to the MPG bullet) is made from a very fine copper and tin powder. After mixing, the metal powder matrix is fed via the hopper into the Fetta press. This machine then feeds the powder into a chamber where it is compressed into a solid core that can be put into a copper jacket. In the video, the powdered metal is fed into the machine on the left. It’s a bit difficult to see, but there is a bottom punch that matches each top punch. The two punches come together to form the core.

This is a very expensive, high-output machine. Fully tooled and set at a reasonable speed, it can make upwards of 90,000 cores per hour!

Story Tip by EdLongRange. We welcome reader story ideas.

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