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November 5th, 2022

Saturday at the Movies: Silhouette Shooting Showcase

silhouette shooting benchrest steel targets video showcase Erich Mietenkorte

Shooting steel silhouettes is fun. For many of us, the “instant gratification” of knocking down steel is more fun than shooting paper. In fact, this very website came into being because the founder enjoyed shooting 600-yard steel silhouette matches in Southern California. That lead him to building a 6mmBR rifle and starting which evolved to become

Today’s video showcase covers a variety of metallic silhouette shooting disciplines. There are the classic smallbore and centerfire silhouette formats, shot from a standing position. One of the world’s top silhouette shooters, Eric Mietenkorte, shows how to shoot silhouette standing. But we also show varmint silhouette matches shot from prone position and from the bench. The Editor’s 600-yard silhouette matches were initially shot from prone (F-class style), and then later from a bench. Both formats were fun.

We also feature a cool video from New Zealand, showing handgun silhouette matches hosted at a beautiful, verdant range in Kiwi country. The handgun shooters use a reclined, foot-forward prone position.

So, whether you shoot prone, sitting, or standing, shooting metallic silhouettes is fun and challenging. Hearing the clang of steel and seeing a metal silhouette tip over is true “instant gratification”.

silhouette shooting benchrest steel targets video showcase Erich Mietenkorte
Photo from 2022 Spindeltop Smallbore Silhouette Championship, Golden Triangle Gun Club, Beaumont, TX.

Metallic Silhouette — A Mexican Import
Silhouette shooting came to this country from Mexico in the 1960s. It is speculated that sport had its origins in shooting contests between Pancho Villa’s men around 1914. After the Mexican Revolution the sport spread quickly throughout Mexico. ‘Siluetas Metalicas’ uses steel silhouettes shaped like game animals. Chickens up front followed by rows of pigs, turkeys, and furthest away, rams. Being that ‘Siluetas Metalicas’ was originally a Mexican sport, it is common to hear the targets called by Spanish names Gallina (chicken), Javelina (pig), Guajalote (turkey) and Borrego (ram). Depending on the discipline one is shooting, these animals are set at different distances from the firing line, but always in the same order. CLICK HERE for NRA Rifle Silhouette Rules.

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silhouette shooting benchrest steel targets video showcase Erich Mietenkorte
Photo from 2022 Spindeltop Smallbore Silhouette Championship.

Silhouette Champion Shares His Skills

Erich Meitenkorte smallbore silhouette

In this next video, silhouette champion Eric Mietenkorte talks about proper hold: “Consistency is key! Form a solid stance that is repeatable and allows you to have a natural point of aim. If you don’t come down on target adjust your feet, don’t rotate your body with your torso muscles.”

Erich explains his aiming method: “Pick a spot on the target and shoot for that. Try not to hesitate, if you’re on target, take the shot. It’s easy to get locked up by trying to make a great shot better. Make sure to follow through, keep that trigger pulled back. Don’t forget to have fun!”

See other videos on The Rifle Silhouette Channel.

Beautiful Rosebud Silhouette Range in Alberta, Canada

silhouette shooting benchrest steel targets video showcase Erich Mietenkorte

This video was created at the scenic Rosebud Silhouette and Benchrest Club in Alberta, Canada. The video offers an introduction to both centerfire (High Power) and smallbore Metallic Silhouette Rifle disciplines, including equipment and match format. These fun and challenging sports can be shot year-round, as you can see in the video below, which includes winter sequences.

Texas Varmint Benchrest Silhouette

If you like accurate rifles and reactive targets, you’ll enjoy this 48-minute video from Shooting USA TV, which features long-range varmint silhouette competition in Texas, the Lone Star State. We have participated in these kind of matches on the West Coast — they are definitely a ton of fun. The sport combines the pure accuracy of benchrest competition with the fun of knocking down critter targets. These are smaller than standard silhouettes, so it’s quite a challenge to hit them at 300 yards and beyond.

Texas Varmint Benchrest Silhouette shooting usa video

In this episode, host John Scoutten competes with his 6.5 Creedmoor PRS rifle. He found that 1-MOA Coyotes offered plenty of challenge at 385 meters! Most shooters at this Texas match use benchrest-grade rifles with premium front rests.

Varmint Silhouette

A similar Varmint Silhouette bench/prone match is held monthly at the Pala Range in Southern California. Prone shooters compete side-by-side with bench shooters. Ten steel “critter” targets are set at each of five yardages: 200m – Field Mice (“pikas”); 300m – Crows; 385m – Ground Squirrels; 500m – Jack Rabbits; 600 yards – Prairie Dogs. Competitors shoot 50 targets, 10 each at five different yardages, alternating among the five distances. So you might start at 500m then do 200m next, then do 600 yards etc. — the target distances are in mixed order to enhance the challenge.

Rimfire Speed Silhouette from the Bench

Fast and full of action, the Speed Silhouette competition is an exciting event shot on the clock. Competitors take 16 shots from 30 to 60 yards. The event is timed and the timer stops whenever the shooter finishes their final target by knocking it down. This event is a blast to shoot, and may even be more fun to watch live, as the results unfold within seconds of each relay start.

New Zealand Handgun Metallic Silhouette

silhouette shooting benchrest steel targets video showcase Erich Mietenkorte

New Zealand is one of the world’s most beautiful island nations, so we can’t think of a better venue for a silhouette match. This video features a handgun silhouette match with targets at multiple distances. The competitors use a special reclining position on the ground, with the handguns (mostly revolvers) aligned on the side of the leg.

Silhouette Shooting Scoring Procedures

This video from the Metallic Silhouette Shooters Society (MSSS) covers the basic rules of rimfire and centerfire silhouette matches. And then the video explains how the shooting strings during silhouette matches are scored. Yes the system is binary (knock-down vs. miss), but there are details, such as when a plate is hit but doesn’t fall. CLICK HERE for a second MSSS video that explains how to get started in silhouette shooting and lists the equipment you’ll need.

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November 5th, 2022

.22 Creedmoor INFO and LOAD DATA from Peterson Cartridge

Peterson Cartridge Company 22 .22 Creedmoor wildcat cartridge load data recipe powder

Peterson Cartridge Company (“Peterson”) has released a lengthy, authoritative guide to the 22 Creedmoor cartridge, a popular wildcat based on the 6.5 Creedmoor or 6mm Creedmoor necked down to .224 caliber. We think the .22 Creedmoor would be a great long-range varmint cartridge, similar to the .22-250 Rem, but with a more modern, efficient cartridge design. In addition, some PRS/NRL competitors may turn to the .22 Creedmoor because it has less recoil and is flatter-shooting than the 6mm Creedmoor. In addition, .224-caliber match bullets are typically less expensive than heavier 6mm and 6.5mm projectiles. Less recoil, and less cost — what’s not to like?*

DOWNLOAD Peterson .22 Creedmoor Load Data Article PDF »

Along with load data, this article has specific sections dedicated to: Primers, Rifling Twist Rates, and Reloading Supplies. If you are considering building a .22 Creedmoor, we recommend you download the full Peterson .22 Creedmoor article, which is available in PDF format.

Peterson Cartridge Company 22 .22 Creedmoor wildcat cartridge load data recipe powder

Peterson states, “Since its inception in 2007… the 6.5 Creedmoor has seen some pretty meteoric growth in popularity. That growth continues as of this writing, as the cartridge has now gone mainstream with hunters and shooters alike. As the popularity of the 6.5 Creedmoor has increased, so has the number of wildcat cartridges based off of it. Some of those popular wildcat cartridges are the 6mm Creedmoor, the .25 Creedmoor, and now the .22 Creedmoor. This data sheet will cover the .22 Creedmoor.

To help our customers, and anyone else who shoots .22 Creedmoor, we decided to create this Data Sheet and distribute it. [In this LOAD DATA Document] you will find four (4) common bullets, and four (4) common rifle powders used when handloading the .22 Creedmoor cartridge. We then took the different bullet and powder combinations and loaded them up to the SAAMI Maximum Average Pressure (MAP) for the 6.5 Creedmoor and 6mm Creedmoor cartridges, which is 62,000 PSI. [O]ur goal was to provide a wide spectrum of bullet weights and the powders used with them.

All of the following data was gathered by our ballistician in our indoor ballistics lab located in our factory in Pennsylvania. Although we were able to gather pressure and velocity data in our lab, we have NOT tested these loads for accuracy. Again, these loads are just designed to give shooters information regarding what velocity, a given bullet and powder charge combination, will produce the SAAMI Maximum Average Pressure (MAP) of 62,000 psi.”

Sample 22 Creedmoor LOAD DATA

Peterson Cartridge Company 22 .22 Creedmoor wildcat cartridge load data recipe powder

IMPORTANT — Pressures can vary significantly with different Cartridge Overall Lengths (COAL). In addition, ANY change to ANY load components — primers, bullets, brass, powder — can affect pressure. Always load conservatively. In addition, because of variances in bore dimensions, some barrels may show higher pressures than others. Again, always start with conservative loads, well below MAX pressures.

*Actually there IS a potential downside — reduced barrel life. We expect that a .22 Creedmoor running hot varmint loads would experience shorter useful barrel life compared to a 6.5 Creedmoor. This is based on what we’ve observed with .22-250 and .22-250 Ackley barrels compared to our 6.5 CM barrels.

Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Reloading, Tech Tip No Comments »