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July 19th, 2018

AutoTrickler + AutoThrow System for Precise Powder Dispensing

autotrickler v2 autotrickler autothrow autothrower powder dispenser force restoration scale
The AutoTrickler/AutoThrow system dispenses powder with 1-2 kernel accuracy in just 10-12 seconds.

Review by Craig Arnzen of Area419.com
Guys in the PRS world are finally ready to admit — the more accurate we want to be, the more we should borrow practices from the F-Class and Benchrest worlds. There are no better examples of this that have popped up in the last year than the widespread adoption of highly accurate powder dispensers and high-end annealing techniques.

I’ll talk about the annealers another time, but today I want to introduce you to the powder dispenser contraption that is popping up on reloading benches everywhere — the AutoTrickler plus AutoThrow running with an A&D FX-120i magnetic force restoration scale.

The setup is priced firmly between the standard RCBS Chargemaster and the high-end $3,800 Prometheus powder dispensers. Depending on how you outfit it, and where you buy it, an AutoTrickler/AutoThrow setup will cost between $900 and $1,200. Figure $500-$525 for the A&D scale, $399.00 for AutoTrickler + AutoThrow (for A&D), and up to another $300 for Area 419 accessories.

autotrickler v2 auto-trickler autothrow autothrower powder dispenser force restoration scale

The AutoTrickler V2 by itself is $229-$269 (depending on scale model), while the AutoThrow is $199.00 purchased separately. Current AutoTrickler owners can add the AutoThrow as an upgrade. It’s worth it — the AutoThrow speeds up the dispensing process dramatically. Watch this video with the smart guy who invented the AutoTrickler and AuthoThrow systems, Adam McDonald:

AutoTrickler Inventor Adam McDonald Demonstrates the AutoThrow System:

How the AutoTrickler + AutoThrow System Works
The “brain” of this system is a micro-processor that controls the motors on the AutoThrow powder dispenser and the AutoTrickler, taking more than 100 readings per second from the scale. The process starts with the AutoThrow first dropping 90% of the charge directly into the pan via a vertical drop tube. Then the AutoTrickler finishes dispensing the charge with super precision, using its horizontal tube. This two-stage process allows the system to throw powder within a kernel or two of your target weight every time — in just 10-12 seconds.

Powder is dispensed onto an A&D FX-120i scale (other models, including a Sartorius Entris 64-1S can also be used) that is able to detect and register the weight of individual kernels very quickly, providing data back to the “brain”. The initial powder drop from the AutoThrow gets you within about 2 grains and then the AutoTrickler finishes in just a few seconds with amazing accuracy. When set up right, this system can weigh repeatably to within one or two kernels of powder.

Area 419 Accessories for AutoTrickler and AutoThrow
The system can also be outfitted with milled aluminum accessories from Area 419, adding adjustability, stability, and ergonomics to the process. We sell a base for the AutoTrickler that adds weight (to reduce movement when the stepper motor runs) and has adjustable feet to help tune the powder flow, a larger cup with handle (to reduce powder splashing when dumped from above) and upgrades for the auto-throw that enhance powder capacity and reduce noise and vibration.

Area 419 accessories billet base powder cup autotrickler v2 autotrickler autothrow autothrower powder dispenser force restoration scale

All in all, this is one of the most popular new ways to throw powder of the last year, and these systems are becoming common enough that we think they are here to stay. This video review by the 6.5 Guys offers some tips for setting up your AutoTrickler System with Area 419 base.

AutoTricker with Billet Base and AutoThrow Review by 6.5 Guys:

Product Purchase Links

AutoTrickler and AutoThrow: http://www.autotrickler.com/autotrickler.html
Area 419 Accessories: http://www.area419.com/product-category/reloading/at-accessories/
Balance + AutoTrickler + AutoThrow Combo: https://ce-products.myshopify.com/products/

This TECH TIP brought to you by Area 419
Oven anneal annealing Alpha Munitions Craig Arnzen Area419.com

Permalink - Videos, Gear Review, Reloading 3 Comments »
July 19th, 2018

Wilkinson Dominates in Score at .50 Caliber FCSA Championships

Walter Wilkinson .50 BMG fifty caliber FCSA Raton New Mexico Whittington Center Steyr HS .50

Retired Army Special Forces Sgt. Maj. Walter Wilkinson won two of the four individual 1,000-yard Score titles — for Light Gun and Hunter Classes — at the recent Fifty Caliber Shooters’ Association (FCSA) 2018 World Championships. In addition to his two individual score titles*, Wilkinson was also a member of the winning 4-shooter team.

The FCSA World Championships were held July 5-7, 2018 at the NRA Whittington Center near Raton, New Mexico. There were shooters from Australia, Great Britain, Spain and the USA in attendance. The FCSA 1000-yard matches have four classes: Light Gun, Heavy Gun, Unlimited, and Hunter. In the first three classes, the rifles are normally shot from a machine rest off the bench. Hunter Class requires the shooter to fire from the ground with a bipod. And that’s how Wilkinson shot all his relays…

Steyr HS .50 BMG FCSA

Remarkably, Wilkinson, who shot his near-“box stock” Steyr HS .50 equipped with factory bipod from the ground in the prone position, posted the FCSA Championships’ highest score, beating out shooters in the Light Gun, Heavy Gun, and even Unlimited Classes.

Beating the Benchresters — While Shooting Prone from Bipod
Wilkinson, a Gunsite instructor from Edgewood, NM, shot a two-day total of 290-10X for the Hunter Score, and his Light Gun Score total of 291-7X was the highest of any shooter in any class — most of whom were firing custom-built rifles from mechanical rests atop concrete benches. Wilkinson also placed fourth overall in the 2-Gun Aggregate, which factors both scores and average group sizes from both classes. Wilksonson’s score wins marks his third FCSA victory in the Hunter Class with his Steyr HS .50 since his first win in 2012, and this year he notched his first Light Gun Score World Title.

Walter Wilkinson .50 BMG fifty caliber FCSA Raton New Mexico Whittington Center Steyr HS .50

The Wicked Whittington Range at Raton
Nestled at the base of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains, the Whittington Center’s 1,000-yard range has notoriously tricky winds, especially in the afternoons. On the first day, Wilkinson shot on the afternoon relays. As usual, switching and swirling winds proved to be a formidable foe for all shooters. Wind coming from behind the shooters was switching from 4 O’clock to 8 O’clock and back again, often changing within seconds. Wilkinson was able to very quickly make wind judgments and adjust his hold accordingly. “I couldn’t do anything wrong,” Wilkinson said. “It was like every time the wind changed, I knew exactly where to hold, and the bullets just kept going where I wanted them to.

Walter Wilkinson FCSA .50 BMG fifty caliber

Walter Wilkinson FCSA .50 BMG fifty caliber
Photo courtesy Brett Berger.

Holding Off Right and Left for the Cycling Wind
“The highlights of the day were the last two strings of fire in Hunter Class during Relay 4″, Wilkinson explained. “I shot a 50-2X with a 9.8-inch group and a 49-2X with a 7.9-inch group. The Ten-Ring is right at 1.15 MOA, and when you keep them all in that, it says something about your rifle and your load. During both of those two strings, I changed from holding on the right side of the target to the left side during the string.”

Wilkinson’s .50 Delivered Quarter-MOA Groups During Load Testing
Wilkonson’ Steyr .50-Cal has always been an accurate rig. Back in 2012, when Wilkinson developing loads, the big rig showed outstanding accuracy: “As I was working up a load for the HS.50, I shot groups that amazed me. I was getting groups of 0.214 MOA at 220 yards, and I didn’t know what to think. All the bullets were going in the same hole, and it was like ‘Wow, I’ve really got a rifle that can shoot here’. That stunned Wilkinson: “With my [military] experience with the performance of the same .50 BMG cartridge overseas, I didn’t expect that kind of accuracy out of it.”

FCSA 50 caliber Fifty Cal world championships

Cost of Big-Bore Shooting
Is owning and shooting a 50 BMG caliber rifle expensive? Relatively speaking yes, but one must put it into perspective. Rifles may run from $2500 to $6000, maybe even more for a top of the line custom rifle. (Current MSRP for the Steyr H2 .50 is $5910.00). A premium long-range scope will set you back $1500 to $3000. And while excellent commercial ammo is available, it runs $3 to $5 per round! Most serious shooters start reloading for the rifle as soon as practical, not only for the economics of reloading but also for the ability to fine tune custom ammo for their specific rifle. It’s a very rare match that is won shooting commercial ammo.

*Wilkinson’s FCSA trophies state “Hunter Class Score World Champion” and “Light Class Score World Champion”. NOTE the FCSA also recognizes, for each class, a World Champion for Group size, AND a World Champion for combined Group and Score (Aggregate). Plus there are Championship Trophies for Two-Gun. This gets a little confusing. With other Disciplines there is only ONE World Champion per class, generally the competitor who has the best combination of Group Size and Score.

Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Competition 1 Comment »
July 19th, 2018

Guided .50 Caliber Projectile — DARPA’s Steerable Bullet

DARPA Exacto .50 Caliber guided bullet

With the Fifty Caliber Shooting Association (FCSA) 2018 World Championships being in the news lately, we thought our readers might enjoy a report on some amazing 50-Caliber technology. For the past few years, the U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) has been developing a guided 50-Caliber projectile. No this is not an April Fools joke — this is for real boys and girls — DARPA has produced a guided bullet. Read on to learn how DARPA did it…

DARPA Exacto .50 Caliber guided bulletImagine if you could “steer” your bullet to the target, after the projectile leaves the muzzle. That has been a dream of marksmen ever since the first rifle was invented. Well that dream is now one step closer to reality, thanks to DARPA.

DARPA has developed a manueverable .50-caliber rifle bullet. DARPA’s Extreme Accuracy Tasked Ordnance (EXACTO) program recently conducted the first successful live-fire tests demonstrating in-flight guidance of .50-caliber bullets. Inside EXACTO bullets are optical guidance systems, aero-actuation controls, and multiple sensors. The top-secret technology permits the trajectory of the bullet to be altered in flight, allowing the bullet to move left or right, or even fly in an arc around an obstacle.

A few years back, DARPA released a video showing EXACTO 50-caliber bullets in flight. Watch carefully and you will see the tracked trajectory appear to bend off in one direction in the last segment of the bullet’s flight. Here is the DARPA Video:

According to DARPA: “This video shows EXACTO rounds maneuvering in flight to hit targets that are offset from where the sniper rifle is initially aimed. EXACTO’s specially-designed ammunition and real-time optical guidance system help track and direct projectiles to their targets by compensating for weather, wind, target movement, and other factors that could impede successful aim.”

DARPA states: “For military snipers, acquiring moving targets in unfavorable conditions, such as high winds and dusty terrain commonly found in Afghanistan, is extremely challenging with current technology. It is critical that snipers be able to engage targets faster, and with better accuracy, since any shot that doesn’t hit a target also risks the safety of troops by indicating their presence and potentially exposing their location.”

The Extreme Accuracy Tasked Ordnance (EXACTO) system seeks to improve sniper effectiveness and enhance troop safety by allowing greater shooter standoff range and reduction in target engagement timelines. The objective of the EXACTO program is to revolutionize rifle accuracy and range by developing the first ever guided small-caliber bullet. The EXACTO 50-caliber round and optical sighting technology expects to greatly extend the day and nighttime range over current state-of-the-art sniper systems. The system combines a maneuverable bullet and a real-time guidance system to track and deliver the projectile to the target, allowing the bullet to change path during flight to compensate for any unexpected factors that may drive it off course.

Technology development in Phase II included the design, integration and demonstration of aero-actuation controls, power sources, optical guidance systems, and sensors. The program’s next phase includes a system-level live-fire test and technology refinement[.]

Permalink - Videos, Bullets, Brass, Ammo, New Product 1 Comment »
July 18th, 2018

Mental Preparation for Competition — A Champion’s Perspective

Tyrel Cooper Camp Perry
Photo by SFC Brandon Green, 2018 National High Power Champion.

Some of America’s most prestigious rifle matches take place at Camp Perry later this month. The President’s 100 Match will be held on July 29th, followed by Individual and Team Trophy Matches. For those competing at Camp Perry this month, we offer some insights from Tyrel Cooper, a multi-time National Champion. A past member of the USAMU, Cooper’s shooting resume includes five national championships (one each in 2008, 2011, 2012, and two in 2013). He won the 2013 NRA National Long Range Championship, as well as the 2013 NRA National Service Rifle Championship. In this article, written in 2014, Cooper explains the mental preparation that helped him win National Titles in 2013.

Below is a 2012 file photo of Ty Cooper shooting a service rifle. Cooper won the 2013 Long Range Championship using a Nesika-actioned bolt gun chambered in 7mm SAUM.

Mental Preparation
by Tyrel Cooper
Tyrel Cooper Creedmoor SportsGetting focused mentally is an important part of preparation for Perry. In 2011 I was chasing Sherri Gallagher, since then I have been chasing Brandon Green[.] If I get beat by a Service Rifle I am going to make him or her work for it. So there is your peak into my mental process. I go for the top and if I am hanging with them then the Service Rifle National Championship will come, Kind of like how I shoot for X’s and Tens will come.

Now I understand everyone is at different levels. You have to figure out what your goals are and then lie to yourself that you’ve already achieved them. Here is a trick that I used back in 2008: When I was a kid just starting out, my Dad made me read several books on shooting. One of them being With Winning In Mind by Lanny Bassham. One of the things I remember from his book is that he would make notes and place them where he would see them often. They contained his goals or stated he was already a world champion. I took a page from his book and did the same thing.

I made 3×5 cards and wrote my personal best 500 and 800 aggregate scores and taped on the horn of my truck, above the radio in my truck, on my laptop and a few other places I would see them often. Every time I saw those I would tell myself that I average those scores and I would get used to seeing them. By doing this you are lying to yourself to overcome the mental blocks the subconscious mind lays out for you.

I went from my worst year in 2007 to winning my first National Championship in 2008. I kind of slacked off in 2009 because I had reached my goals and didn’t set new ones and it showed, so I had to find new goals and motivation which I did and that pushed me back to the top.

Long story short, this is a mental sport and you have to figure out what you need to do to perform at your highest levels and breaking through those mental road blocks. You have to figure out how to get yourself to relax and control your mind keeping calm when you are shooting a personal best, either standing or on the day.

Here is a tip from my mental process from shooting. First I shoot for Xs, I took the line from the movie The Patriot and applied it to my shooting, “Aim small, miss small” and it is true. If you accept wide shots then you will keep shooting wide shots.

Winning Techniques for Rifle Competition


Slow, Solid, Smooth, Center

Always focus on the positive and good shots, and what you did physically and mentally, when you shot them. When I am nervous and need to calm myself down I tell myself: slow, solid, smooth, center.

Slow
I want my movement to be slow…
I can shoot Tens and Xs all day with slow movement.

Solid
Solid like a rock, a rock doesn’t move and that’s how I want my positions. By saying solid it reminds me to go through my little checks to make sure I am doing what I need to do make that happen.

Smooth
Smooth — that is my trigger word for smooth movement. You don’t want fast choppy movement but slow and smooth. This also reminds me to be smooth on the trigger. You can be smooth-fast or you can be smooth-slow but you have to be smooth and most people aren’t when they think they are. Just before leaving the USAMU, I walked up and down the line of five shooters during a rapid fire string and only one of them was smooth with their trigger control. It’s the second most important thing when it comes to shooting.

Center
This reminds me that I want my shots in the middle. It is just a positive reinforcement of where I want my shots to go. I shoot a reverse flat tire so it also kind of reminds me as to what I am looking for.

Tyrel Cooper Creedmoor Sports

Story Tip from EdLongrange. We welcome reader submissions.
Permalink Competition, Shooting Skills 3 Comments »
July 16th, 2018

BargainFinder 147: AccurateShooter’s Deals of the Week

Accurateshooter Bargain Finder Deals of Week

At the request of our readers, we provide select “Deals of the Week”. Every Monday morning we offer our Best Bargain selections. Here are some of the best deals on firearms, hardware, reloading components, optics, and shooting accessories. Be aware that sale prices are subject to change, and once clearance inventory is sold, it’s gone for good. You snooze, you lose.

1. Creedmoor Sports — Shooting Coats $50 and $100 Off

Creedmoor Sports Hardback shooting coat custom sale discount

Hard-holders and position shooters, this deal is for you. Creedmoor Sports has long offered some of the very best American-made shooting jackets. Creedmoor coats have been worn by legions of top shooters including Smallbore, Service Rifle, and High Power National Champions. Now you can enjoy big savings on Custom and Off-the-rack Creedmoor shooting coats. Custom shooting coats are $100 off, while the Original Hardback and Deluxe Hardback are $50 off.

2. CDNN — Colt Competition AR15 Kit, $549.99

Colt AR AR15 match rifle upper lower kit discount CDNN
The Colt Kit does NOT include barrel, bolt carrier group, charging handle, or magazine.

This affordable Colt AR15 Kit includes upper, complete lower, handguard, and Magpul stock. To this, add your choice of barrel and optic. We like this option because the barrel is so important to accuracy and overall performance. This Colt package costs $549.99. Add a match-grade, finish-chambered barrel from Criterion or Krieger, plus bolt carrier group, and you’re in business. The Magpul PRS stock features a quick-adjustable cheek-piece and butt-plate — allowing you to easily adapt head position and LOP for your discipline of the day. The straight-toe PRS stock works great in a rear bag. This is a good platform for a PRS Gas Gun Division rifle.

3. Grafs.com — Lyman Summer Sale, 10-22% Off Select items

Grand sons Graf's lyman 15% Off sale trigger gauge tumbler borecam

Lyman has brought out some fine products in recent years, tools that offer excellent performance for the price. Now you can get a serious discount on a variety of Lyman products, including the popular Lyman BoreCam, and the Lyman Trigger Pull Gauge, our “go-to” tool for measuring pull weights. Here are some of the best Lyman Summer Sale deals at Grafs.com now:

Lyman BoreCam Digital Borescope — $199.99 (marked down from $229.99)
Lyman Turbo Pro Magnum Tumbler — $69.99 (marked down from $84.99)
Lyman Trigger Pull Gauge — $42.99 (marked down from $47.99)

4. Smith & Wesson — Summer Savings Program, Save $30-50

Smith Wesson Summer Savings

Not you can save up to $50.00 on new Smith & Wesson revolvers and semi-auto pistols. Now through September 2, 2018, S&W is offering cash back rebates (via prepaid Mastercards). These deals are available from Brownells and other leading online retailers, as well as S&W authorized dealers nationwide. To qualify, submit rebate form via Smithandwessonrebates.com before October 1, 2018. Proof of purchase required.

1) $50.00 Rebate for new M&P Pistol or Performance Center M&P Pistol in calibers 9mm, 40 S&W, or 45 Auto only (excluding M&P SHIELD Pistols).
2) $30.00 Rebate for new S&W or Performance Center Revolver (excluding M&P BG38).
3) $25.00 Rebate for any new SD or SDVE pistol.

5. Grafs.com — Free Precision Mount with Nikon FX1000 Scope

Nikon FX1000 free mount cantilever PRS AR15

Nikon has a summer promo for its FX1000 scope series. Order a 4-16x50mm or 6-24x50mm FX1000 optic and get a free precision mount. NOTE: This applies to both MOA and Mil versions, regular and illuminated. Even without the free precision scope mount, these FX1000 scopes are a very good value. At $799.99, 6-24x50mm FFP MRAD model is a solid choice for PRS competition. With good glass, lifetime warranty, nice controls, and good reticle options, the FX1000 optics compete well with scopes costing hundreds more. This offer runs through August 26, 2018. OFFER DETAILS HERE. Other vendors may offer this promotion along with Grafs.com.

6. Brownells — Howa Barreled Actions on Sale, Starting at $259.99

Memorial Day Sale Brownells Monday deals sale

Right now, Brownells is running a big sale on Howa Barreled Actions, in a wide variety of chamberings. You may want to pick up one of these barreled actions, which start at $259.99. We like Howa actions — they are smooth, and they feature an excellent two-stage trigger. Howa also offers a unique Mini Action, which is great for a small-caliber varmint rig. Here are some of the Howa Barreled Actions currently in stock at Brownells. NOTE: This is just a partial sample — there are many other varieties:

.223 Rem, 20″ Heavy Barrel, $399.99
6.5 Grendel, Mini Heavy Barrel, $389.99
6.5 Creedmoor, 24″ Heavy Barrel, $399.99
6.5 Creedmoor, 26″ Heavy Barrel, $429.99
7mm-08, Std Cerakote, $579.99
7.62×39, Mini Light Barrel, $259.99
.308 Win, 20″ Heavy Barrel, $289.99
.308 Win, 24″ Heavy Barrel, $299.99
.30-06 Sprg, 22″ Sporter Barrel, Cerakote, $349.99
.300 Win Mag, 24″ Heavy Barrel, $279.99

7. EuroOptic.com — Leica CRF 2000, $399.00

Leica 2000-B Rangemaster Laser LRF Rangefinder Sale Eurooptics.com

This may be the best deal we’ve seen on the Leica 2000-B Laser Rangefinder (LRF) with 7-power optic. This unit is rated out to 2000 yards on reflective objects (in real-world use it will laze a deer well past 800 if you can hold steady). The Leica 2000-B features air pressure and temp sensors, on-board inclinometer, plus angle Angle correction with the true hold-over displayed in both MILs and MOA. The compact Leica CRF 2000-B weighs just 6.5 ounces and measures 4.5″ L x 2.25″ H x 1.25″ W. Here’s a verified buyer’s report: “Was torn between the SIG Kilo 2200MR and the Leica. Compared the Leica and a SIG. Leica’s glass blows the SIG Kilo out of the water. Got readings on everything the SIG would read. I’d recommend it.”

8. Amazon — Signature Zee High Rings (with Pos-Align Inserts)

Amazon.com Burris Signature Zee Rings

Burris Signature Zees are our “go-to” rings for use with benchrest rifles. Right now Amazon has the 1″-diameter High Sig Zee rings on sale for $37.69 (Black) or $37.39 (Nickel) with FREE shipping. Burris also offers medium height 1″-diameter Sig Zees. The 30mm Signature Zee rings are somewhat more expensive (about $54.00), but still well worth the price in our view. This Editor uses 30mm Signature Zee Rings for his personal 6mmBR rifle. The polymer inserts allow you to pre-load elevation, and also eliminate the need to lap your rings.

9. Amazon — Howard Leight MAX NRR33 Earplugs, $8.22/50 Pairs

accurateshooter.com review Max-1 Howard Leight ear plugs

20 Pairs
50 Pairs

These Howard Leight NRR33 Max plugs are your Editor’s favorite foam earplugs. Between shooting, motorcycling and mowing lawns, I probably have Max plugs in my ears 2-3 days a week. This is a very good price for a bulk pack of 50 pairs. And if you act soon, you can get free shipping to boot.

Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Hot Deals, Reloading No Comments »
July 16th, 2018

New Mobile App for LabRadar Chronograph

LabRadar chronograph doppler mobile app android apple ios firmware update

Love your LabRadar chronograph? Or wish you owned one? Well now the LabRadar is even better. The makers of the advanced, Doppler-radar LabRadar system have introduced a versatile new LabRadar Mobile App that works with iOS (Apple) and Android systems.

The Mobile App lets you control the LabRadar remotely with your smartphone or laptop. This makes it easier when you position the LabRadar beyond arms reach (such as when using a suppressor). The App also makes it much easier and faster to change settings, display shot data, and download test results.

LabRadar Android Mobile App:
LabRadar chronograph doppler mobile app android apple ios firmware update

Initial feedback on the LabRadar Mobile App has been very positive, though it took some guys a couple tries to get everything working right. Android users — be sure to turn on your “Location Services”. You’ll find a full discussion of the LabRadar App, with set-up tips, on our Shooters’ Forum. Read HERE.

LabRadar iOS (Apple) App, iPad Version:
LabRadar chronograph doppler mobile app android applie ios firmware update

Here’s a recent review from a LabRadar owner using an Android phone: “[This App] makes the LabRadar exponentially more useful without additional cost. Firmware update to 1.20 was uneventful and quick. No issues running this on a Samsung Galaxy S9+. Shot series can be reviewed on the phone while disconnected from the radar. While connected you can change the radar settings from within the App. Great features and flawless execution.”

LabRadar Mobile App Functionality
With the new Mobile App, you can control your Labradar from your smartphone or tablet with its Bluetooth connection. Manage, store or delete the information in your series as you wish. View your data and summaries displayed in list or table formats. Even view a graph of speed vs. distance.

– Control your LabRadar from your smartphone or tablet
— Display Single Shot Stats: Velocity, Energy, Power Factor
— Display Shot Series Stats: Average, ES, SD, Hi/Lo Shot
— View Velocity by Distance as Graph and List
— Arm, disarm, and change your settings

How to Install and Use LabRadar Mobile App

First get the LabRadar App for your mobile device. Download the Android App from Google Play. Get the iOS (Apple) Version from the Apple App Store. You may also need to update your LabRadar Firmware.

labradar mobile app android google play labradar mobile app apple Ios

Firmware Update to Enable Bluetooth
LabRadar owners may need to upgrade their chrono’s Firmware to allow the unit to communicate with the Mobile App. The latest firmware will enable the Bluetooth connectivity on your LabRadar device. Download the new Firmware v1.2.2 by following the link below.

1. Go to http://www.mylabradar.com/download/
2. Select: Labradar Firmware v1.2.2 (English) Mobile App Ready.
3. Copy the FWA and FWB files to a SD card (or use the USB cable method).
4. Insert the SD card in your Labradar and turn it on.
5. On your Android Device, make sure your location services is enabled.
6. IMPORTANT — Do NOT PAIR your Bluetooth device to the Labradar! When using the mobile App simply connect to your Labradar from within the App.

Permalink Gear Review, New Product, News No Comments »
July 15th, 2018

How Ammo Temp Affects Pressure, Velocity, and Point of Impact

Sierra Bullets Ammunition Ammo temperature temp test hot F-Class Ammo cold
In this .308 Win test, 70° F ammo shot 96 FPS slower than ammo heated to 130.5° F. And the 130.5° ammo was 145 fps faster than ammo right out of the freezer (at 25.5° F). That’s a huge difference…

EDITOR’s NOTE: The Sierra tester does not reveal the brand of powder tested here. Some powders are much more temp sensitive than others. Accordingly, you cannot extrapolate test results from one propellant to another. Nonetheless, it is interesting to see the actual recorded velocity shift with ammo temperature variations in a .308 Win.

Written by Sierra Chief Ballistician Tommy Todd
This story originally appeared in the Sierra Bullets Blog
A few weeks ago I was attending the Missouri State F-Class Match. This was a two-day event during the summer and temperatures were hot one day and hotter the next. I shot next to a gentleman who was relatively new to the sport. He was shooting a basically factory rifle and was enjoying himself with the exception that his scores were not as good as he hoped they would be and he was experiencing pressure issues with his ammunition. I noticed that he was having to force the bolt open on a couple of rounds. During a break, I visited with him and offered a couple of suggestions which helped his situation somewhat and he was able to finish the match without major issues.

He was shooting factory ammunition, which is normally loaded to upper levels of allowable pressures. While this ammunition showed no problems during “normal” testing, it was definitely showing issues during a 20-round string of fire in the temperatures we were competing in. My first suggestion was that he keep his ammunition out of the direct sun and shade it as much as possible. My second suggestion was to not close the bolt on a cartridge until he was ready to fire. He had his ammo in the direct sunlight and was chambering a round while waiting on the target to be pulled and scored which can take from a few seconds to almost a minute sometimes.

This time frame allowed the bullet and powder to absorb chamber [heat] and build pressure/velocity above normal conditions. Making my recommended changes lowered the pressures enough for the rifle and cartridge to function normally.

Testing Effects of Ammunition Temperature on Velocity and POI
After thinking about this situation, I decided to perform a test in the Sierra Bullets underground range to see what temperature changes will do to a rifle/cartridge combination. I acquired thirty consecutive .30 caliber 175 grain MatchKing bullets #2275 right off one of our bullet assembly presses and loaded them into .308 Winchester ammunition. I utilized an unnamed powder manufacturer’s product that is appropriate for the .308 Winchester cartridge. This load is not at the maximum for this cartridge, but it gives consistent velocities and accuracy for testing.

I took ten of the cartridges and placed them in a freezer to condition.

Sierra Bullets Ammunition Ammo temperature temp test hot F-Class Ammo cold

Sierra Bullets Ammunition Ammo temperature temp test hot F-Class Ammo cold

I set ten of them on my loading bench, and since it was cool and cloudy the day I performed this test I utilized a floodlight and stand to simulate ammunition being heated in the sun.

Sierra Bullets Ammunition Ammo temperature temp test hot F-Class Ammo cold

I kept track of the temperatures of the three ammunition samples with a non-contact laser thermometer.

The rifle was fired at room temperature (70 degrees) with all three sets of ammunition. I fired this test at 200 yards out of a return-to-battery machine rest. The aiming point was a leveled line drawn on a sheet of paper. I fired one group with the scope aimed at the line and then moved the aiming point across the paper from left to right for the subsequent groups.

NOTE that the velocity increased as the temperature of the ammunition did.

The ammunition from the freezer shot at 2451 fps.

Frozen FPS

The room temperature ammunition shot at 2500 fps.

Room Temperature FPS

The heated ammunition shot at 2596 fps.

Sierra Bullets Ammunition Ammo temperature temp test hot cold

The tune window of the particular rifle is fairly wide as is shown by the accuracy of the three pressure/velocity levels and good accuracy was achieved across the board. However, notice the point of impact shift with the third group? There is enough shift at 200 yards to cause a miss if you were shooting a target or animal at longer ranges. While the pressure and velocities changed this load was far enough from maximum that perceived over pressure issues such as flattened primer, ejector marks on the case head, or sticky extraction did not appear. If you load to maximum and then subject your ammunition to this test your results will probably be magnified in comparison.

Sierra Bullets Ammunition Ammo temperature temp test hot cold

This test showed that pressures, velocities, and point-of-impact can be affected by temperatures of your ammunition at the time of firing. It’s really not a bad idea to test in the conditions that you plan on utilizing the ammo/firearm in if at all possible. It wouldn’t be a bad idea to also test to see what condition changes do to your particular gun and ammunition combination so that you can make allowances as needed. Any personal testing along these lines should be done with caution as some powder and cartridge combination could become unsafe with relatively small changes in conditions.

Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Reloading, Tech Tip 2 Comments »
July 14th, 2018

NRA High Power and LR Championships at Camp Atterbury

NRA High power national championships SFC Brandon Green

Brandon green 2018 NRA High Power ChampionCongratulations to SFC Brandon Green, the 2018 NRA National High Power Champion. Brandon won yet another High Power title in convincing fashion, with a 2394-147X overall score. Two other soldiers finished second and third, separated by X-Count. Second-place SFC Shane Barnhart scored 2386-137X, while SGT Benjamin Cleland was third with 2386-128X. In fourth place, and top civilian, was Ronald Zerr with 2383-126X. (CLICK HERE for High Power Results.)

Now it’s time for High Power Long Range. For the next few days, the nation’s top long-range “hard-holders” will be competing at Camp Atterbury, Indiana. The NRA High Power Long Range Championships run July 13-17, with the Long Range Palma match on Tuesday the 17th. Many notable shooters will be there, including John Whidden, who is aiming for a “three-peat” after winning the LR Championship for the past two years running (and five times in total: 2007, 2008, 2010, 2016, 2017).

Camp Atterbury Indiana
Long Range competitors at 2017 NRA National High Power Rifle Championships.

Long Range and Mid-Range National Matches at Camp Atterbury, Indiana, 2018:
Friday, July 13 – Monday, July 16: NRA Long Range (awards ceremony on concluding day)
Tuesday, July 17: NRA Long Range Palma, Palma Team Awards Ceremony
Wednesday, July 18 – Saturday, July 21: NRA Mid Range Individual
Sunday, July 22: NRA Mid Range Teams, Mid Range Awards Ceremony
Monday, July 23: Range Clean Up/Clear Out

CLICK HERE for All 2018 NRA National Championships Results

Whidden’s Perfect 2017 Palma Match
Whidden secured the 2017 LR Title by shooting “clean” (not dropping a point) in the tough Palma competition. In the NRA Palma match, rifles must be .223 Rem or .308 Winchester, with metallic sights (no scopes). The match is conducted at three yardages, 15 shots at each distance of 800/900/1000 yards, with unlimited sighters at 800 and two sighters at 900 and 1000.

Whidden Palma rifle .308 Win winchester Camp Atterbury

John liked the Camp Atterbury facility and he credited his equipment for his 2017 victory: “With the change to the new Camp Atterbury venue, many shooters were a little unsure how things were going to shake out. But it all turned out really well. All of my equipment shot fantastic all week long — that certainly made shooting a big score easier.”

Whidden Palma rifle .308 Win winchester Camp Atterbury

Whidden Palma Rifle
Action: Barnard “P” (three lugs, 60° bolt lift)
Barrel: Bartlein 32″, Light Palma contour, cryo-treated by 300 Below.
Stock: Anschutz Precise aluminum smallbore stock, set up for centerfire barreled action.
Trigger: Barnard Two-Stage adjustable

Permalink Competition, News 1 Comment »
July 14th, 2018

PRS in the Wild West — Match in Cody, Wyoming on July 28-29

Monster steel challenge cody wyoming PRS Monster Lake Ranch tactical gun match

Gunwerks is hosting its first Precision Rifle Series Match, the Monster Steel Challenge, in Cody, Wyoming, July 28-29, 2018. This will be a major match with very different experiences on Day One vs. Day Two. For your hefty $250 fee, you’ll get lots of action with 10 stages on Day One, followed by a “walk in the woods” in the Wyoming back-country on Day Two

The first match day, held at Cody Shooting Complex, will include 10 stages in a fast-paced, square, range-style set-up. Day Two, at Monster Lake Ranch, will provide competitors with a 270-degree fire fan allowing for some incredible vistas and challenging shots. For the practical competitor who enjoys the backcountry — this is as good as it gets.

Watch Monster Steel Challenge Match Preview:

“Gunwerks is very proud and excited to be hosting our first-ever Precision Rifle Series right here in our backyard,” Aaron Davidson, Gunwerks founder and CEO, said. “The courses will be challenging and the vistas that Wyoming will be offering the competitors will be outstanding.”

Monster steel challenge cody wyoming PRS Monster Lake Ranch tactical gun match

Match Restrictions on Gun Calibers and Ammo Velocity
As with most other PRS matches, the allowed span of calibers is .224 through .308 inclusive. No .338s and .375s gents. Velocities are limited to 3200 FPS for ALL calibers/chamberings. NOTE: If a competitor’s ammo speed is in question, he must shoot through a LabRadar to verify velocity. If the ammo exceeds 3200 FPS, the competitor will be automatically DQ’d (disqualified), with NO REFUNDS. Competitors will require 200 rounds for both days, plus extra for sight-ins or confirmation shots.

Monster steel challenge cody wyoming PRS Monster Lake Ranch tactical gun match

Slots for competitors are limited. Registration is available for a $250 non-refundable fee. For more info, contact Gunwerks (307-298-1313 or team@gunwerks.com), or visit www.gunwerks.com.

Monster steel challenge cody wyoming PRS Monster Lake Ranch tactical gun match
The rich prize table will include a complete rifle built by Gunwerks. Nice.

Monster steel challenge cody wyoming PRS Monster Lake Ranch tactical gun match
Cody, Wyoming is a beautiful Western locale, suitable for quality vacation time before or after the Monster Steel Challenge match. Photo courtesy City of Cody.

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Permalink Competition, Tactical No Comments »
July 13th, 2018

Second Amendment Foundation Sues California State DOJ

CA Gun bullet button assault rifle registration
Graphic courtesy The Daily Shooter YouTube channel.

The Second Amendment Foundation (SAF) has filed a lawsuit against the California Department of Justice and Attorney General Xavier Becerra, seeking an injunction against the agency for failing and refusing to establish a properly functioning Internet-based firearms registration system.

Joining SAF in this legal action are the Calguns Foundation, Firearms Policy Coalition, Firearms Policy Foundation and three private citizens. The lawsuit was filed in Shasta County Superior Court.

“We’re suing because California DOJ’s Firearms Application Reporting System (CFARS) broke down during the deadline week for people to register their firearms in accordance with new state laws,” said SAF founder and Executive Vice President Alan M. Gottlieb. “For a whole week the system was largely inaccessible. People who wanted to comply with the law simply couldn’t and now they face becoming criminals because they couldn’t do what the law requires.”

The lawsuit notes that during the week of June 25-30, which was the statutory registration deadline, the CFARS system was inaccessible and inoperable on a variety of web browsers across the state. Many users who were able to initially log in and begin the process could not finish because the system crashed, obliterating all of their work. The CFARS system was substantially underfunded and understaffed from its inception, Gottlieb noted.

“It’s like a bad version of ‘Catch-22’,” Gottlieb observed. “The government required registration by the deadline, but the online registration failed and people couldn’t register. They’re required to obey the law, but the system broke down, making it impossible to obey the law. Now these people face the possibility of being prosecuted. We simply cannot abide that kind of incompetence.”

“Attorney General Xavier Becerra seems to care about everything but the constitution, the rule of law, and law-abiding California gun owners,” said FPC President Brandon Combs. “If Becerra spent as much time doing his job as he does talking about his pet crusades against the federal government, hundreds of thousands of Californians would not be in legal jeopardy right now.”

“Predictably the state of California wants to take guns away from the law abiding. In this instance they couldn’t even build a working system to respect gun owners’ rights,” explained CGF Chairman Gene Hoffman. SAF and its partners want the court to prevent DOJ from enforcing the law to allow individual plaintiffs and other citizens in the same situation to register their legally-possessed firearms through a “reliable and functional registration system.”

CA Gun bullet button assault rifle registration

The Second Amendment Foundation (www.saf.org) is the nation’s oldest and largest tax-exempt education, research, publishing and legal action group focusing on the Constitutional right and heritage to privately own and possess firearms. Founded in 1974, The Foundation has grown to more than 650,000 members and supporters and conducts many programs designed to better inform the public about the consequences of gun control.

Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo, News 2 Comments »
July 13th, 2018

NSSF Safety Video: “How to Talk to Your Kids”

Gun Safety Julie Golob NSSF Video

The National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF) has produced a very useful educational resource, a video explaining “How to Talk to Your Kids about Firearm Safety”. The video, starring champion shooter Julie Golob, encourages parents to have “the talk” about firearm safety with their kids sooner rather than later, and provides tips for how to have a helpful discussion.

“As a mother, I know full well how challenging this conversation can be,” Golob said. “It’s crucial that parents set an example and teach their kids about firearm safety so children don’t learn about guns solely from what their friends say or what they see on video games and TV.”

“Too often, children don’t know what to do if they find a gun,” said Steve Sanetti, President and CEO of NSSF, which developed and sponsors the Project ChildSafe firearm safety education program. “This video opens a door for honest conversation and empowers parents to be the authority on gun safety for their kids, whether they have guns in their homes or not.”

The “How to Talk to Your Kids about Firearm Safety” video was created as a resource to start positive and constructive conversations by encouraging discussion rather than lecture, and helps parents responsibly demystify the subject of guns. For more information, visit Projectchildsafe.org.

Permalink - Videos, Shooting Skills No Comments »
July 12th, 2018

T-Riffic: Tikka T3 Modular Tubegun Chassis from Gary Eliseo

Eliseo Competition Tubegun T3

At the SAKO/Tikka booth at SHOT Show, we saw some tactical shooters admiring the smooth Tikka T3 action and crisp trigger. They liked the action but they told us they wished they could get the T3 action in a configuration similar to the Ruger Precision Rifle. Well folks, there is a way to build a Tikka T3-based tactical/practical rig.

Gary Eliseo of Competition Machine offers a tubegun chassis for Tikka T3 actions in both Target and Tactical versions. The T3 kit is set up for AICS short action magazines. This is a “no gunsmithing” installation — no modifications to the action are required and the chassis kit works with the factory T3 trigger and safety. Along with the new Target and Tactical versions, a lower-cost Light-Weight Hunter T3 Chassis is also offered which accepts most AR-type buttstock assemblies.

Eliseo Competition Tubegun T3

Eliseo Competition Tubegun T3Tikka’s T3 action is a very nice unit that works well as the centerpiece of a precision rifle. The T3 action is rigid and robust. It cycles smoothly and has a short 75° bolt lift. The T3 features a Sako-style extractor, with angled-leading-edge bolt lugs for smooth lock-up.

The T3 action can be installed in Gary’s Chassis Kit with either a recoil disc (and bolts) or glue-in action mounting. Price for the Tactical model is $1050.00, with a rugged Cerakote finish. Price for the Target version is $950.00 with a powdercoat finish or $1025.00 with a Cerakote finish. The Light-Weight Hunter chassis (that accepts owner-installed AR-type buttstocks) starts at $685.00. (Check for current pricing.) Tikka T3 action and AICS 5-round or 10-round magazines sold separately. For more info, visit GotXRing.com, call 928-649-0742, or send email to: spraynandprayn [at] gmail.com . CLICK HERE for order page.

Eliseo Competition Tubegun T3

Permalink Gear Review, Tactical No Comments »
July 12th, 2018

Muzzle Brake Noise Levels — What PRB Tests Reveal

PrecisionRifleBlog.com Cal Zant Muzzle Brake Test Noise Level Decibels Suppressor

A while back, Cal Zant at PrecisionRifleBlog.com did a big muzzle brake comparison test. Along with measuring recoil reduction, Cal’s team recorded sound levels in PRB’s exhaustive muzzle brake field test. In the PRB archives you’ll find comprehensive muzzle brake sound test results, with hard data on 20 different muzzle brakes.

Sound can be a tricky subject, but Cal Zant, the editor of PrecisionRifleBlog.com, presents everything an informed shooter should know about muzzle brake noise in a straightforward and practical way. Most sound tests are measured from the side of the muzzle, in accordance with mil-spec standards, and Cal did that. But he also measured the sound level of each brake from behind the rifle, closer to the shooter’s position. This provides a more accurate indicator of the actual sound levels firearms operators will encounter while shooting.

Muzzle brakes ARE really loud — that’s something most active shooters have observed. But this study finally gives us some hard data and makes objective comparisons. The difference between brakes was quite significant. Some brakes were ear-splitting — more than twice as loud as other brakes tested.

As a bonus, Cal also provides data on how the new Ultra series suppressors from Thunder Beast Arms Corp (TBAC) compare in terms of sound level behind the rifle.

Check out the Test Results: http://precisionrifleblog.com/2015/08/07/muzzle-brakes-sound-test.

Permalink Tactical, Tech Tip No Comments »
July 11th, 2018

Camp Perry National Matches Events in July and August

Camp Perry summer 2018 CMP National Matches
The 2018 National Matches at Camp Perry Ohio kicked off with the NRA Pistol Championship, July 8-13.

The National Matches moved to Camp Perry, Ohio, in 1907 and continue to take place every summer on the shores of Lake Erie, though the NRA High Power Rifle Championships have moved to Camp Atterbury, Indiana. Drawing well over 6,000 annual participants, the National Matches have become a huge, national shooting sports festival. There’s nothing quite like it. Competitors range from beginners to many of the world’s best marksmen. Conducted throughout the month of July through the first week of August, the Camp Perry National months offer a spectacle of shooting with a wide variety of rimfire and centerfire disciplines, with both modern and vintage arms. If you’ve never been to Camp Perry, it is a “bucket list” experience for any serious shooter.

Camp Perry 2018 National Matches

Camp Perry summer 2018 CMP National MatchesThe National Matches at Camp Perry
The National Matches include Small Arms Firing Schools and a series of CMP National Trophy Rifle and Pistol Matches and CMP Games Events as well as NRA Championships that are held in connection with the National Matches. The National Matches at Camp Perry begin with the NRA National Pistol Championships. For 2018, the CMP has added CMP Smallbore and Long Range Matches to the month-long schedule. The CMP fulfills its responsibility to conduct the National Matches through a working partnership with the Ohio National Guard.

The First Shot Ceremony officially opens the National Matches. This year Maj. Gen. Clark W. LeMasters Jr. addressed assembled competitors, match officials, VIPs, volunteers, and spectators. After Gen. LeMaster’s concluded his speech, he had the honor of firing the ceremonial “first shot” of the National Matches, officially signaling the opening of the National Matches. (Read First Shot Ceremony News Report.)

Camp Perry summer 2018 CMP National Matches


Camp Perry 2018 NM Calendar | CMP National Matches Program

Camp Perry summer 2018 CMP National Matches
The John C. Garand match is a Camp Perry classic. Note the signature Garand clip in the air.

Camp Perry summer 2018 CMP National Matches
The National Trophy Junior Team Match attracts squads of young shooters from around the country.

Camp Perry summer 2018 CMP National Matches
The Springfield M1A Match is popular every year. Here an amputee shooter competes in 2017.

Vintage Sniper Team Match

The 2018 Vintage Sniper Rifle Match will be held August 3, 2018 on the Viale Range. This two-man team competition using scoped rifles of WWI and WWII Vintage has become of of the most popular rifle matches held at Perry. Over 250 teams have competed in recent years. Many competitors use the M1903 Springfield, but you’ll also see scoped M1 Garands, K31s, Mausers, and even a Lee-Enfield or two. (Semi-Auto shooters are scored separately).

Camp

Serious smallbore rifle competition returns to Camp Perry this year. Smallbore competitions have been slotted into the Camp Perry National Match schedule July 16-22, 2018, though the NRA National Smallbore Championships will still be held at Camp Wa-Ke-De in Indiana. The CMP will host a new series of smallbore events in July at Camp Perry, the Mecca of competitive shooting in the USA. This way elite smallbore competitors, with their premium match rifles, can enjoy the famed Camp Perry ranges. Of course, the CMP also will continue to offer the hugely popular Rimfire Sporter Match, which attracts hundreds of competitors each year.

Camp Perry Petrarca range electronic targets

The smallbore matches will be fired on Rodriguez Range at Camp Perry under a covered firing line. Shooters Technology will provide a scoring App that allows instant scoring for quick results. Finals will be conducted on the CMP’s Electronic Targets installed on the Camp Perry Petrarca Range.

Photos courtesy CMP Zenfolio 2017 Photo Archive.
Permalink Competition, News 1 Comment »
July 11th, 2018

Leupold Scope Detects Rifle Canting with Intelligent Reticle

Leupold VX-6HD hunting riflescope scope optics electronic reticle level motion sensor
New Technology — Electronic Reticle Level. Activate level by pushing illumination button for 15 seconds. The level warning deactivates automatically when you rotate the scope over 30 degrees.

The latest Leupold VX-6HD scopes have a feature we’d like to see incorporated in other optics: a tilt-correction warning system. When the rifle is canted more than 1 degree off level, the VX-6HD’s new electronic reticle level flashes, telling the shooter to square up his rifle. This kind of innovation helps both hunters and target shooters. Even a small bit of cant variance from shot to shot will change the point of impact at long range (Canting Demo HERE). Proprietary MST (Motion Sensor Technology) automatically deactivates illumination after 5 minutes of inactivity, yet reactivates instantly as soon as any movement is detected.

Leupold VX-6HD hunting riflescope scope optics electronic reticle level motion sensorThe electronic reticle level and other advanced VX-6HD features were praised by Petersen’s Hunting magazine, which awarded the VX-6HD an Editor’s Choice award. Leupold put a lot of advanced optics technology in this scope. Leupold says: “We gave it new high-definition lenses for sharpened clarity, Twilight Max Light Management System, an in-scope cant indicator, a throw lever for fast magnification changes, and a more robust erector system.”

Leupold offers six VX-6HD series riflescopes: 4-24x52mm, 3-18x50mm, 3-18x44mm, 2-12x42mm, 1-6x24mm, and 1-6x24mm multigun. All Leupold VX-6HD riflescopes are CDS-capable and include one free Custom Ballistic Dial with purchase.

Leupold VX-6HD hunting riflescope scope optics electronic reticle level motion sensor

The VX-6HD series of scopes also feature a very clever, button-controlled return-to-zero system for both windage and elevation. A visible button snaps out at the zero point, locking the turret. Press the ZeroLock button to release and dial your needed elevation or windage. Simply spin the turret back and the lock snaps into place automatically at the designated zero point. Simple, easy, effective.

Permalink Gear Review, New Product, Optics 4 Comments »
July 10th, 2018

Crosman All-American Field Target Championship

Field Target Championship Crossman New York
Today, July 10, 2018 is the last day to register for the Crosman All American Field Target Championship.

Upstate New York heats up in the summer with the largest field target event in the country — the Crosman All-American Field Target Championship (CAAFTC). This very popular airgun event takes place July 20-22, 2018 in upstate New York. If you are a Field Target Shooter and want to attend, don’t hesitate — today is the very last day to register for the big event.

CLICK HERE for Match Info & Schedule | CLICK HERE to Register

Field Target Championship Crosman Rush New York
Shooters from across the nation and many foreign competitors will compete this year at the CAAFTC held at the Rochester Brooks Int’l Skeet and Trap Club.

On July 20-22, the Crosman All-American Field Target Championship (CAAFTC) will be held at the Rochester Brooks International Skeet and Trap Club in Rush, New York. 0ver 100 air rifle and air pistol competitors will participate in the big event hosted by Crosman. This event attracts top Airgunners from across the nation (and some foreign countries). Along with regular Field Target matches, there will be specialty side matches, plus a factory tour. The event is free to the public.

Field Target Championship Crosman Rush New York

The CAAFTC is sanctioned by the American Airgun Field Target Association and is a featured AAFTA Grand Prix event. The 120-shot match has competitive rifle divisions based on allowable gun and support equipment. Here are the main air rifle classifications:

Hunter Division – rifle fires at a maximum 20 foot pounds of energy (FPE), shooter may use a non-attached bipod, non-restrictive clothing, and sitting stool.
Open Division - maximum 20 FPE maximum rifle, shooter may wear a body harness, no bipod, 6″ maximum height seat.
World Field Target Federation (WFTF) – similar to Open but shooters compete according to international standard of maximum 12 fpe for rifles.
Freestyle Division – 20 FPE maximum rifle, no other restrictions. (This is new for 2016).

The pistol competition includes similar divisions based on shooting styles. Both rifle and pistol divisions include sub-classes based on the air rifle powerplant: piston driven or precharged pneumatic.

“If you want to see some of the country’s finest airgun shooters, this is the hottest event of the summer and it’s free for the public,” says Chip Hunnicutt, Marketing Manager for Crosman. “Alongside the world-class shooters, we’ll have enthusiasts simply having a good time and even parents bringing their kids for some good fun outdoors.”

The three-day competition features multiple shooting matches including the main two-day rifle event. There are five divisions for competitors: Open, Hunter, WFTF, Freestyle, and Pistol. In addition to the main rifle event, this year will also feature a pistol match, the Quigley Bucket Match and the Pyramyd Air Gunslinger match. The Bucket match re-creates famous scene in the movie “Quigley Down Under” in which the lead character shoots a bucket at 700 yards. Here the distances are scaled down a wee bit (wink). Competitors, using iron sights only, get 5 shots at a 1.75″ bucket placed at 55 yards.

Field Target Championship Crosman Rush New York

Tech Talk: Why the Big Side-Wheels on the Scopes?
Field Target rifles shoot pellets propelled by compressed air. These light-weight, low-BC projectiles drop very quickly, with a looping trajectory. In order to hit targets at distances out to 50 yards or so, you have to adjust your scope to compensate for pellet drop. But you can’t set the scope correctly without knowing the precise range to the target. This is the function of the big wheels on the side of the scope. Field Target Competitors use the parallax adjustment on high-magnification scopes to determine target range. The big wheel allows quick, yet precise parallax adjustment. Markings on the wheel show the shooter the scope settings required for the distance “dialed-in” via the over-size parallax wheel.

Crosman All American Field Target Championship

Permalink Competition, Tech Tip 3 Comments »
July 10th, 2018

The 20-Caliber Black Rifle — AR Chambered in 20 Practical

20 Practical AR uppers

The new .224 Valkyrie for AR15-platform rifles has garnered lots of attention lately. That new cartridge has gotten people thinking about the options for an AR shooter beyond the venerable .223 Remington (and 5.56x39mm NATO). While the .224 Valkyrie is good for shooting long heavy bullets (such as Sierra’s new 95gr SMK), there is a simpler, cheaper option for folks who favor “fast and light” — smaller, lower-mass bullets traveling at very high velocities. That option is the 20 Practical, which is simply a .223 Remington necked down to 20 caliber. This little cartridge can launch 40-grainers at over 3900 fps. That’s bookin’. This makes the 20 Practical a great choice for an AR-based varmint rifle.

20 Practical20 Practical Ultimate Varminter
A decade ago, as a “proof-of-concept”, AccurateShooter.com created a 20 Practical AR15 Ultimate Varminter with a custom 20-caliber upper from Robert Whitley of AR-X Enterprises, LLC. That project rifle was ultra-accurate — every 5-shot group out of the gun was less than the size of a dime. That gun was auctioned off, but Robert Whitley continues to produce custom 20 Practical AR15 uppers. (The 20 Practical cartridge is simply the .223 Rem necked down to 20 caliber — you can use standard .223 brass and load with standard.223 Rem dies. Just swap in a smaller expander and use smaller neck bushings.)

Robert reports that the accuracy of the first 20 Practical AR15 was no fluke. After building six (6) more 20 Practical uppers, he tested them for accuracy and they all shot great. These uppers feature DPMS low-pro receivers with side charging handles. They are fitted with PacNor 1:11″ twist, three-groove stainless barrels.

20 Practical AR uppers

Robert reports: “We have been making more 20 Practical AR15 uppers and I have to say I am astounded by the accuracy of these things. For shooting little tiny groups out of an AR15 with bullets going 3500+ fps, it’s hard to beat the 20 Practical. Today I test-fired six more uppers, all with 11-twist barrels. Three of the uppers had 24″ barrels, two had 20″ barrels, and one had an 18″ barrel (we call it ‘Stubby’).

20 Practical Reamer print

In four of these uppers I shot re-sized Winchester brass using 25.3 grains of WC844 powder with Berger 40gr BTHP bullets loaded at 2.225″ OAL (about .015″ off the lands). WC844 is inexpensive military surplus powder that is nearly identical to H335. I tried three different primers and the choice did not seem to matter (CCI BR4, Rem 7 1/2s and Win Small Rifle — the old silver ones). All these four uppers shot great. Here is an animated GIF with targets from uppers #6, 10, and 11. All groups are mag-fed, 5-shot groups shot at 100 yards using a front rest and rear bag.”

Targets Shot with Three Different 20 Practical AR Uppers

20 Practical AR uppers

For more information visit www.6mmAR.com, or contact Robert Whitley via email: rcw3 [at] erols.com.

Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Gear Review, Hunting/Varminting 2 Comments »
July 9th, 2018

Bargain Finder 146: AccurateShooter’s Deals of the Week

Accurateshooter Bargain Finder Deals of Week

At the request of our readers, we provide select “Deals of the Week”. Every Monday morning we offer our Best Bargain selections. Here are some of the best deals on firearms, hardware, reloading components, optics, and shooting accessories. Be aware that sale prices are subject to change, and once clearance inventory is sold, it’s gone for good. You snooze you lose.

1. Buds Guns Shop — Browning Buck Mark, $249.73 After Rebate

Browning Rebate Buckmark Buck Mark UFX discount buds gun shop

The Browning Buckmark is a classic .22LR pistol. Ergonomic, accurate, and reliable, the Buck Mark is a worthy addition to any gun collection. And now you can get a Buck Mark for under $250.00. Bud’s Gun Shop is selling the Buck Mark Camper UFX for $299.73 (or $291.00 cash price). Additionally, Browning is now offering a $50 Summer Blast Rebate that lowers your net cost to $249.73. But act soon, to qualify for the $50 Factory Rebate you must purchase by July 15. NOTE: Browning is also offering $100 Rebates on shotguns and $50 Rebates on rifles.

2. Amazon — Caldwell Front and Rear Bag Set (Unfilled), $13.70

Caldwell deadshot front rear bag sandbag sale varminter

This is a functional, “field expedient” system that’s easy to haul around and only costs $13.70! Varminters can keep these bags in a vehicle for deployment any time. Act quick — this is a special sale price at Amazon.com. This unfilled bag combo sells for up to $33.00 elsewhere. Yes this is a very inexpensive system, but it works surprisingly well, particularly with “standard” rifles with narrow fore-ends. Rather than sand, you can fill with rice or media to make the bags lighter. This system features a heavy-duty clip and D-Ring for linking the two bags for easy transport. The Caldwell DeadShot bags are crafted from durable, water-resistant 600 denier polyester. The dimensions of FILLED BAGS are: FRONT 11″ x 8.5″ X 6″; REAR 5″ x 5″ x 4.5″.

3. Natchez — Rock Chucker Supreme Reloading Kit, $279.99

Deals of Week RCBS Rock Chucker Supreme Kit

Everything you see above can be yours for just $279.99. Great Deal. Right now, Natchez is selling the Rock Chucker Supreme Master Reloading Kit for $279.99, a great price considering all the hardware you get: Press, Primer Tool, Scale, Powder Measure, Loading Tray, Reloading Manual and more. Heck, the Rock Chucker press alone is worth $160.00+. This is good starter kit for any reloader with sturdy items (like the Rock Chucker press), that will last a lifetime.

4. Midsouth — Major Brand Blem Tipped Bullets — Up to 30% Off

Midsouth Blem bullets discount tipped bullet

Midsouth is now offering big savings on major-brand blem bullets. These are overruns, cosmetically blemished jackets or tip discolorations, or factory second bullets from a major bullet manufacturer (Midsouth isn’t allowed to name the company). NOTE: Some projectile tips are misshapen, other packages may contain bullets which vary by grain weight. No matter what, you’re getting tipped hunting, or tipped match bulk bullets at huge savings. Many options in .224, .243 (6mm), .257, .264 (6.5mm), .277, .284 (7mm), .308, and .338 calibers.

5. Whittaker Guns — Howa Mini Action .223 Rem, $349.99

Howa Mini Action .223 Rem varmint rifle

This is hard for a varmint hunter to resist. You can get a complete Howa .223 Rem rifle for $349.99 — about the price of a replacement barrel blank for a Remington. This little gem has a smooth, short-throw Mini Action with Howa’s excellent two-stage trigger. The .223 Rem is a fine choice for prairie dog work, with good barrel life and great factory ammo options. Yes we’d prefer a heavier barrel for extended shooting sessions, but this is still a great price on a fine little rifle.

6. Stocky’s — LR Stocks with Aluminum Bedding Block, $179.99

Stocky's Stocks Composite V-block stock

Here’s a good deal on a versatile Stocky’s Long Range Stock with aluminum V-block bedding system. For just $179.99, order this for Rem/Rem Clone long actions or short actions, with either narrow or wide (varmint/tactical) barrel channel. This would be a good choice for a varmint rifle. This is also offered with handsome hydrographic or web-pattern baked-on textured finishes for $199.99.

7. NRA — Life Membership $600 — Limited Time Offer

NRA discount $600 free life member membership offer Shooting USA

Here’s a great deal on NRA Life Membership. Right now you can get the NRA Life Membership for $600.00 — that’s a $900 savings over the regular $1500.00 NRA price. This a special offer through Shooting USA television. NOTE: The shorter term 1-year, 3-year, and 5-year NRA memberships are also discounted. For example the basic 1-year membership is discounted to $30.00, a $10 savings. NOTE: NRA Memberships no longer include $2500 Armscare Insurance.

8. GunBuyer — Mossberg 12ga Tactical Shotgun, $309.99

Mossberg model 500 20

A strong argument can be made that the best home defense firearm is a 12 gauge shotgun. This Mossberg 500 is a reliable 12ga pump-gun with useful upgrades including ghost-ring sights and barrel heat-shield. This Model 500 Tactical boasts an 8-shell capacity and weighs 7 pounds unloaded. Order now from GunBuyer.com for $309.00. User reviews have been positive: “This unit… fires smooth, and operates perfectly out of the box. There’s an odd beauty to the tactical pump that is hard to describe. The action is smooth and repeatable.”

9. Midsouth — 250 Adhesive Precision Targets on Roll, $12.49

midsouth adhesive benchrest precision target roll

Midsouth offers 250 self-adhesive Benchrest Targets on a convenient roll. These stick-on targets work great for load development. The aiming diamond helps align the cross hairs of your scope for consistent shot placement. If you set your Point of Impact to the 1/4″ grid pattern at the top it’s easy to eyeball your group size. At the bottom are fields for your load info. Each Target sticker measures 6″ x 4″ with a 4.5″ x 2.5″ printed area. Midsouth sells the 250-target roll for $12.49, discounted this week from $14.99.

Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Hot Deals, Optics No Comments »
July 9th, 2018

National High Power Championships at Camp Atterbury

NRA National Matches Camp Atterbury Indiana High Power Service Rifle
2018 National Matches photo from NRA Competitive Shooting Facebook Page.

National High Power Matches, July 5-24, 2018 at Camp Atterbury Indiana
The NRA National High Power Matches are now underway at Camp Atterbury in Indiana. The Rifle National Matches, running July 5-24, will include the High Power Championship, the Long Range Championship, and the Mid-Range Championship, along with other special events. We are now in the thick of the NRA High Power Rifle Championship, which runs through Wednesday, July 11. Good luck to all the competitors! The Long Range Individual Championship runs the 16th through the 19th, followed by Long Range Palma, and Mid-Range individual and Team Matches.

Carl Bernosky high power rifle

National Matches at Camp Atterbury, Indiana, 2018 Schedule:

Friday, July 6: Whistler Boy JR. Team, 2nd Amend. Team Match, Awards Ceremony, Competitor Meeting
Saturday, July 7 – Wednesday, July 11: NRA High Power Rifle (awards ceremony on concluding day)
Thursday, July 12: Long Range Packet Pickup and Competitor Meeting
Friday, July 13 – Monday, July 16: NRA Long Range (awards ceremony on concluding day)
Tuesday, July 17: NRA Long Range Palma, Palma Team Awards Ceremony
Wednesday, July 18 – Saturday, July 21: NRA Mid Range Individual
Sunday, July 22: NRA Mid Range Teams, Mid Range Awards Ceremony
Monday, July 23: Range Clean Up/Clear Out

NRA National Matches Camp Atterbury Indiana High Power Service Rifle
Click Calendar to See Large, Full-Screen Version.

NRA National Matches Camp Atterbury Indiana High Power Service Rifle

NRA National Matches Camp Atterbury Indiana High Power Service Rifle

Lodging at Camp Atterbury and Nearby
There is on-base lodging — rooms and cabins will be available to all competitors 18 and over. To book a room, or for any questions about lodging, please call (812) 526-1128. Camp Atterbury lodging includes suites and standard rooms as well as the MWR Campground and the MWR Cabins. Lodging is controlled by the Camp Atterbury Lodging Office, not by the NRA. Entry fees DO NOT include lodging costs. There are also a number of hotels nearby, including Charwood Suites. Nearby campground Johnson County Park also offers special rates for High Power competitors.

With the CMP hosting important matches this year at Camp Perry, many rifle competitors will be “commuting” between the two venues this summers, driving 4.5 hours from Indiana to Ohio.

Map Camp Perry Camp Atterbury Ohio Indiana

Permalink Competition, Shooting Skills No Comments »
July 8th, 2018

F-Class Beauty from KW Precision LLC

Delaware F-Open F-Class rifle Cerus Brux barrel Panda Action

Forum member Keith W. (aka “Cigarcop”) of KW Precision LLC is a talented riflesmith whose projects display outstanding finish work and attention to detail. Keith does some of the best bedding work we’ve ever seen. Here is one of his latest creations. Keith recently completed a stunning F-Class rig for a shooter in Delaware. It’s a beauty, that’s for sure. Keith has posted more details about this rifle in a Shooters’ Forum Thread.

Delaware F-Open F-Class rifle Cerus Brux barrel Panda Action

This handsome rifle features a polished Stolle (Kelbly) Panda Action, and two (2) Brux barrels, both chambered for the .284 Winchester cartridge. The real eye-catching component of this rifle is the stunning Cerus F-Open stock. This features multiple laminations with highly-figured Walnut on the sides. This certainly ain’t your “off-the-shelf” laminated stock. This just shows the beauty that can be achieved with carefully-chosen lamination layers (plus 12 coats of clear).

Delaware F-Open F-Class rifle Cerus Brux barrel Panda Action
This beautiful F-Open rig features a laminated wood stock with stunning figured walnut on the outside.

Keith of KW Precision LLC is renowned for his bedding work, and this rifle shows why. Keith takes great pride in his work, and his attention to detail is second to none. This bedding job is as good as it gets.

Delaware F-Open F-Class rifle Cerus Brux barrel Panda Action

Bringing out the figure in the wood requires multiple finish coats (and careful sanding between coats). But the results are worth it. Shown below is the Cerus stock, BEFORE the finish coats were applied. It took time and effort to transform the “naked” Cerus stock into a true stunner. Keith applied twelve (12) coats of PPG Automotive Clear with wet sanding between each coat.

Delaware F-Open F-Class rifle Cerus Brux barrel Panda Action

Permalink Competition, Gunsmithing 4 Comments »