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June 11th, 2024

Devastating Disaster from .300 Blackout in .223 Rem Rifle

.300 AAC Blackout 300 BLK kaboom accident blowup cartridge failure barrel .223 Rem 5.56
Photos and Facebook post by Tactical Rifle Shooters

Yet another .300 Blackout disaster. Unfortunately, that .300 Blackout cartridge can fit in a .223 Rem chamber. Shooting a .308-caliber bullet in .223 bore is a recipe for disaster.

.300 AAC Blackout 300 BLK kaboom accident blowup cartridge failure barrel .223 Rem 5.56

.300 AAC Blackout 300 BLK kaboom accident blowup cartridge failure barrel .223 Rem 5.56The .300 AAC Blackout aka “300 BLK”, is a compact 30-caliber cartridge designed to work in AR-15 rifles. It has a shorter cartridge case to accommodate the bigger 30-caliber bullet while still fitting in a standard AR-15 magazine. Unfortunately, that’s the danger. A careless shooter can toss a .300 Blackout cartridge in with .223 Rem rounds without noting. And because the case-head size is the same as the .223 Rem (5.56×45) the rifle’s bolt assembly will happily chamber and fire the .300 BLK round. Problem is, that forces a .308 diameter bullet down an undersized .223-caliber bore. Not good!

This images were provided by Tactical Rifle Shooters on Facebook. The message was clear: “Don’t try to run 300 Blackout in your .223/5.56mm. It won’t end well. The problem is identical rifles and identical magazines but different calibers.”

Image from Accurate Shooter Forum. Cutaway shows the jammed .30-Cal bullet:
.300 AAC Blackout 300 BLK kaboom accident blowup cartridge failure barrel .223 Rem 5.56

For those who MUST have a .300 Blackout, here are some things you can do:

1. Use different colored magazines for .300 Blackout vs. .223 Rem.
2. Fit all your uppers with caliber-labeled ejection port covers.
3. Mark .223 Rem upper handguards with the caliber in bright paint.
4. Mark all .300 BLK Rounds with heavy black marker.

.300 AAC Blackout 300 BLK kaboom accident blowup cartridge failure barrel .223 Rem 5.56

Comments by Folks Who Viewed these .300 Blackout Disaster Photos:

“The .300 Blackout is simply a badly-designed round. A properly-designed round would have had a feature in the shape that would have prevented cross loading in the first place.” — D. Santiago

“I almost made that mistake… I had a magazine of 300 BLK inserted in my .223/5.56 all night. Fortunately, I never pulled the trigger. Once I realized the mistake, I almost got ill. [After that incident] I no longer own a 300 BLK.” — B. Welch

“Happened to me hog hunting from a helo. Gun exploded in my face.” — B. Hood

“Fire-forming projectiles [is] so wrong in centerfire!” — M. Stres

“Had some dude come into the store the other day wanting .300 Blackout ammo to shoot in his 5.56 AR. It took 15 minutes of explaining for him to understand you got to have a .300 Blackout Upper!” — R. Williams

Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Tactical, Tech Tip 1 Comment »
June 6th, 2024

Zombies in the Heartland 3-Gun Match — 2024 Results with Video

2024 hornady zombies heartland match 3-Gun jerry miculek

Hornady Hosts 12th Annual Zombies in the Heartland 3-Gun Match
Over 450 zombie hunters descended on Grand Island, Nebraska, May 31 through June 2, 2024, to battle the “undead” during the 12th annual Zombies in the Heartland 3-Gun Match hosted by Hornady and the Heartland Public Shooting Park. Shooters from all over the country armed with handguns, shotguns, and rifles, tested their talent in 10 zombie-themed stages. Specifically developed reactive zombie targets kept everyone engaged and entertained.

The Heartland Zombies match is a veritable theme park for shootists, with many fun stages and innovative targets. Many unique, reactive zombie targets have been developed specifically for this match. The use of paper targets has been minimized — so it’s mostly “bang and clang”. Rifles, pistols and shotguns are used on most stages. There were also fun side-matches. Watch the video above to see this year’s action.

2024 hornady zombies heartland match 3-Gun jerry miculek

2024 Zombies in the Heartland Match Division Winners

Open: Nate Schmidt
Tactical: Ryan Calhoon
PCC: Jay Carillo
Lady: Dianna Muller
Junior: Blake Wilkes
Amateur: Kyle Nordstrom
Super Senior: Jerry Miculek
Senior: Terry Lauwers
Military: Taylor Clemens
LE: Jim Holtmeyer

For complete results visit

“A special thanks to the Heartland Public Shooting Park staff for their preparedness in dealing with inclement weather,” said Jeremy Millard, Hornady Engineer and Match Director.

2024 hornady zombies heartland match 3-Gun jerry miculek
2024 hornady zombies heartland match 3-Gun jerry miculek
2024 hornady zombies heartland match 3-Gun jerry miculek
2024 hornady zombies heartland match 3-Gun jerry miculek

To see more photos, visit the Hornady Zombies in the Heartland Facebook page.

2024 hornady zombies heartland match 3-Gun jerry miculek

2024 hornady zombies heartland match 3-Gun jerry miculek
2024 hornady zombies heartland match 3-Gun jerry miculek

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June 2nd, 2024

Chassis Rifle Genesis — Building a Precision Tactical Rifle Video

masterpiece arms tactical rifle gunsmithing milling CNC CAD

How is a modern, metal-chassis rifle built? This very cool video from Masterpiece Arms answers that question. The nicely-edited video shows the creation of a Masterpiece Arms tactical rifle from start to finish. All aspects of the manufacturing process are illustrated: 3D CAD modeling, CNC milling of the chassis, barrel threading/contouring, chamber-reaming, barrel lapping, laser engraving, and stock coating. If you love to see machines at work, you will enjoy this video…

masterpiece arms tactical rifle gunsmithing milling CNC CADmasterpiece arms tactical rifle gunsmithing milling CNC CAD

masterpiece arms tactical rifle gunsmithing milling CNC CADmasterpiece arms tactical rifle gunsmithing milling CNC CAD

masterpiece arms tactical rifle gunsmithing milling CNC CADmasterpiece arms tactical rifle gunsmithing milling CNC CAD

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May 28th, 2024

The Gun Run Competition Combines Marksmanship and Fitness

gun run biathlon pistol rifle ar15 tactical match fitness

When most shooters think of biathlon, they imagine the winter sport which combines cross-country skiing with rimfire rifle shooting. Now there’s a new type of biathlon, a true “run and gun” competition with rifles and pistols. The Gun Run competitors move on foot over natural terrain, with 5-8 shooting stages over the course, typically 5 km (about 3 miles).

gun run biathlon pistol rifle ar15 tactical match fitness

The Gun Run is a two-gun, centerfire biathlon. It is designed to test your physical fitness, marksmanship, and equipment. Competitors will carry their rifle, pistol, ammunition, mags and anything they believe they need to complete the course. They will travel over various distances depending on the match — but most often a 5 kilometer marked course consisting of natural terrain, roads, and trails. There will be anywhere from 5 to 8 shooting stages. There are night events, two-person team events, and even a land navigation event where you must use map and compass to complete the course.

The Gun Run is not a CrossFit competition and it’s not USPSA. This is a challenging event that test personal fitness and marksmanship with both rifle and pistol.

gun run biathlon pistol rifle ar15 tactical match fitness

How to Participate in The Gun Run Events
Click below for the list of The Gun Run 2024 Events with links to sign-up pages. The next competition is slated for June 22, 2024 at The Sawmill Tactical Training Complex in Laurens, South Carolina. That event is currently full, but spectators are allowed. The next open event will be held September 28, 2024 at DeWitt’s Outdoor Sports in Ellerbe, North Carolina. Entry fee is $110.

The Gun Run 2024 Schedule Events and Contact INFO »

Here are some comments from Website:

Origins of The Gun Run
This isn’t a new concept … matches like this originated in Texas 20 years ago and have spread all over the country. Prior to that, Colonial Era Americans would gather on the village green sometimes multiple times a week and conduct close order drill with rifle marksmanship competitions. Shooting is as old a past time for this country as this country is old.

Fitness Challenge
Carrying all your gear in 90 degree weather up and down hills is not easy. Having the best gear and being a good marksman can help but having a level of fitness where you can maneuver with gear on is extremely important. The end result of all of this is improving your training plan. Whether it be physical or on the range, every event you compete in should give you areas to work on. Sometimes new kit needs to be bought but most often it is our fitness that needs the most improvement.

gun run biathlon pistol rifle ar15 tactical match fitness

Permalink Competition, News, Tactical 1 Comment »
May 24th, 2024

First Shot Target Hit at 1500 Yards — Could You Do That?

6.5 Creedmoor 1500 yards Kestrel
File photo showing Kestrel 5700 Elite. See video below for 6.5 Creedmoor rifle.

6.5 Creedmoor 1500 yards applied ballistics kestrelIt’s not easy to place a first shot on target at 1500 yards. You must measure the wind speed with precision, know your exact muzzle velocity, and have a sophisticated ballistics solver. In this short video from Ryans Range Report, the shooter manages a first-round hit on a steel silhouette at 1500 yards. He used a Kestrel 4500 NV Weather Meter with Applied Ballistics software to figure out the trajectory for his 6.5 Creedmoor rounds.

The Kestrel recorded a wind velocity, and the internal software calculated a solution of 17 Mils elevation (that’s 928 inches of drop) with 2.5 Mils windage. “Bang” — the shooter sends it, and 2.6 seconds later “Clang” he had a hit (flight time was 2.6 seconds). Bryan Litz observes: “This is the science of accuracy (in the form of an Applied Ballistics Kestrel) being put to good use at 1500 yards”.

Later in the video (1:05-1:15) the shooter places three rounds on steel at 1000 yards in just 10 seconds. The three shots all fall within 10″ or so — pretty impressive for rapid fire. The shooter reports: “[In my 6.5 Creedmoor] I’m using a 136gr Lapua Scenar L. This bullet has impressed me. It screams out of my barrel at 2940 fps and holds on all the way out to 1,500 yards.”

The rifle was built by Aaron Roberts of Roberts Precision Rifles ( Chambered for the 6.5 Creedmoor, it features a Leupold Mark VI 3-18x44mm scope.

Roberts Precision Rifles
19515 Wied Rd. Suite D
Spring, Texas 77388
Phone: 281-651-5593
Email: rprifles @

Permalink Shooting Skills, Tactical No Comments »
May 21st, 2024

NRA World Shooting Championship on Shooting USA This Week

shooting usa show television nra world shooting championship walther 2024

Shooting USA TV will broadcast a great show tomorrow, 5/22/24. Shooting USA’s Wednesday Night episode features the NRA World Shooting Championship held last month at Camp Atterbury. This unique competition features multiple disciplines shot with firearms supplied by sponsors. All of the guns are provided and once the match is over the stage firearms become prizes. There are also cash prize awards for the top Pro Class competitors. SEE NRA World Championship Program.

Shooting USA SHOW TIMES: This Shooting USA Episode airs Wednesday, May 22, 2024 at 9:00 PM Eastern and Pacific; 8:00 PM Central. If you miss the regular broadcast, you can stream the show online at any time on Vimeo for $0.99 per episode.

shooting usa show television nra world shooting championship walther 2024

The NRA World Shooting Championship was held April 3-6, 2024 at Camp Atterbury, Edinburgh, Indiana. Presented by Walther, this challenging event involved rifle, pistol, and shotgun shooting with a dozen disciplines — from short-range action pistol to long-range rifle. Topping the field among lady shooters was the talented Lanny Barnes, a 3-Time Olympic biathlete and professional 3-Gun competitor. We congratulate Lanny for her great 2024 performance at the NRA Championship, which earned Lanny the title of NRA World Shooting Lady Champion!

2024 world shooting championship nra camp atterbury lanny barnes

The NRA World Shooting Championship
This championship is designed to test individuals through multiple different disciplines over a period of three days of shooting. Competitors compete in Professional and Amateur categories for cash and prizes of over $250,000. Walther and other sponsors supplied ALL firearms equipment and ammunition required for the 12 stages of competition.

To do well, competitors must be highly proficient in all shooting skills — rifle, pistol, shotgun, both rapid fire and precision. The stages were: Sporting Clays, Precision Standing Air Gun, NRA Americas Rifle Challenge, NRA Precision Pistol, FITASC, 3-Gun, Mid-Range AR-Tactical, Biathlon, SASS (Cowboy Action), PRS, Scholastic Action Shooting, and USPSA.

SEE 2024 World Shooting Championship Program »

2024 NRA multi-gun championship world rifle pistol shotgun 3-gun

2024 NRA multi-gun championship world rifle pistol shotgun 3-gun

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May 11th, 2024

Saturday Movies: AR-Platform Rifles Set-Up & Maintenance

Brownells tech tip video AR15 ar platform rifle gunsmithing

Do you own or shoot an AR-platform “black rifle”? Then you know these rifles run dirty, and have some unusual maintenance requirements. On the other hand, the AR “Modern Sporting Rifle” is fun and versatile with a vast range of options among buttstocks, barrels, handguards, and grips. You can assemble a simple 16″ barrel .223 Rem rig for home defense, or build a long-barreled 6mm ARC rifle with bag-rider buttstock and high-magnification optic for long range target work. The choice is up to you.

To help with your black rifle journey, here are eight helpful videos from Brownells. These will help ensure your AR rifle cycles reliably and runs longer, with reduced wear. Brownells also explains how to choose the optimal barrel twist rate. CLICK HERE to order AR parts, accessories, and ammo from Brownells.

AR Bolt/Bolt Carrier Lubrication — Smarter Methods

This video shows the proper way to lubricate an AR-15 bolt-carrier assembly. The video identifies the key metal-on-metal friction points where you actually need lubrication: the rails on the underside of the carrier, shiny wear points on top, and just a dab on the cam pin. How much oil/lubricant should you use? The AR-15 is pretty forgiving on that point. Some spots work best with grease, others work best with a lighter oil. Just keep it out of the combustion areas. Those little holes in the carrier are gas vent holes, NOT oil holes!

AR Maintenance — General Cleaning Procedures

Let’s face it, ARs with the original gas system tend to run dirty. You’ll need to regularly clean the bolt carrier and bolt. In addition you should regularly clean the chamber area and the inside of the upper. Also make sure to clean the lower (see video 3:15) and ensure the trigger assembly is properly maintained. This video covers general cleaning and maintenance of AR-platform rifles. We highly recommend that all new AR owners watch this video. NOTE: When cleaning the bolt, don’t forget the extractor recess and ejector recess. The majority of ARs we’ve seen that did not function properly had gunk (lube, carbon, brass shavings) clogging these areas.

AR Barrel Twist Rates — What You Need to Know

AR barrels can be ordered with a variety of twist rates from 1:12″ to 1:7″. Basically, the longer/heavier the bullet you plan to shoot, the faster the twist rate you need. For example, Sierra recommends a 1:7″ twist rate for the 90gr SMK. A 1:12″ could work with the small lightweight bullets up to 55 grains. The 1:9″ barrel will stabilize the light and mid-weight bullets up to about 77 grains. We recommend a 1:8″ or 1:7″ twist rate for the best versatility. You’ll find a detailed discussion of AR twist rates on

How to Install an AR15 Trigger Assembly

One of the most common AR upgrades done by black rifle owners is swapping out the trigger for a better unit (perhaps a two-stage). Trigger replacements on ARs can be done fairly easily with basic tools. But there are some recommended procedures to ensure the trigger group swap goes easily. You’ll want to have a proper mount to secure the lower, and tools that fit the pin diameters on your lower.

AR Rifle Build — How to Avoid Common Mistakes

This Brownells video explains five common yet serious errors people make while assembling or modifying AR-15 class rifles. Here are the five mistakes all AR builders need to avoid:

1. Mounting Accessories that Contact the Gas Block: A common mistake is attaching accessories like bipods directly to the handguard in such a way that screws exert pressure on the gas block. This misalignment can harm accuracy. The solution involves carefully selecting the attachment point or opting for shorter screws.

2. Incorrect alignment of the Gas Block: This is another widespread issue. Properly aligning the gas block with the barrel’s gas port is essential for the rifle’s reliable operation. Misalignment can lead to cycling problems due to insufficient gas flow.

3. Over-Torquing the Castle Nut: Applying excessive torque to the castle nut can damage the threads of the receiver extension, also known as the buffer tube. The recommended torque setting is 40 foot-pounds. Exceeding this value can compromise the structural integrity of these components.

4. Excessive Material Removal in Upper Receiver Lapping: Removing too much material when lapping the upper receiver, can cause the barrel to sit too far into the upper receiver. This misplacement can affect feed ramp alignment and gas block positioning, potentially leading to functional issues.

5. Improper Buffer Tube Installation: Failing to install the buffer retainer and spring correctly, or screwing the buffer tube in excessively, can obstruct the upper receiver’s closure. Correct installation depth is crucial for these components to perform their intended functions.

Checking Headspace on ARs

In this Tech Tip, Brownells gun tech Steve Ostrem walks users step-by-step through the process of checking headspace on their AR-15 rifles, both new and used. It is very important to have proper headspace to ensure proper feeding and extraction, and to ensure good brass longevity (with less risk of dangerous case separation). Starting at 2:10, this video explains how to check headspace with go/no-go gauges and maximum headspace gauge. Ostrem notes: “If you have an AR that closes on a no-go gauge, we recommend taking it to a gunsmith before heading to the range.”

brownells AR AR15 headspace video go gauge
Excessive headspace in AR platform rifles can lead to dangerous case separation.

Setting Up Gas Tube Systems

This Tech Tip examines AR-platform gas systems, and shows how to select the proper length gas tube, and how to configure multiple tube systems if you change your barrel to different lengths. This is worth watching for anyone re-barreling an AR.

Barrel Gas Block Alignment — Key to Reliable Cycling

In this video, Brownells gun tech Steve Ostrem explains surefire methods to align your gas block. The most common problem with AR builds is poor cycling, commonly caused by misalignment between the gas block and the barrel’s gas port.

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May 1st, 2024

Scope Ring Cap with Built-In Picatinny Rail — Clever Innovation

American Defense Mfg AD-Delta Scope Mount Ring Cap Picatinny Rail rangefinder laser

Here’s a clever new product that will be appreciated by PRS/NRL shooters and some hunters. American Defense Manufacturing (ADM) has crafted a scope ring upper unit that includes a Picatinny rail on the top of the front ring. That allows you to mount various devices above your scope, such as a compact laser rangefinder. This is currently offered in a 34mm version, but will be offered in 30mm version “in a few weeks”. This unit only works with ADM scope mounts. However, Nightforce has a similar Rail Accessory Platform (RAP-i) that works with NF 30mm or 34mm rings. The innovative ADM ring cap unit, officially dubbed the AD-Delta Scope Mount Ring Cap-Picatinny Rail, costs $120.00.

American Defense Mfg AD-Delta Scope Mount Ring Cap Picatinny Rail rangefinder laser

American Defense Mfg AD-Delta Scope Mount Ring Cap Picatinny Rail rangefinder laserADM posts: “We are now offering alternate ring caps for the Delta Series Mounts featuring picatinny rails to accommodate the ever growing use of accessories and laser rangefinders on scoped carbines. The 5-Lug (Low-Red Dot) version can be used to mount a Red Dot or low profile laser sight. The 5-Lug (Low-Red Dot) version can be used to mount a Red Dot or low-profile laser sight. The 7-Lug (Tall-Laser Rangefinder) can be used for laser rangefinders such as the Vortex Impact 4000. The 7-Lug Version is currently available in 34mm, the 30mm version will be available in the near future. The ADM Ring Cap product includes 1 replacement ring cap and 4 mounting screws.”

NOTE: This ring cap WILL ONLY fit ADM Delta Series Mounts, it is NOT compatible with other manufacturers’ scope mounts. Also ADM cannot guarantee height compatibility with all optics as turret heights vary between different makes and models. Price is $120.00 for all versions.

Permalink New Product, Optics, Tactical 1 Comment »
April 29th, 2024

Hone Your Handgun Skills with SIG Sauer Training Videos

Shooter's Edge handgun training Sig Sauer Academy

Do you know someone who recently purchased his/her first handgun and is getting started in the shooting sports? Or do you need to brush up your own pistol skills? Then check out a new FREE video training series from the SIG Sauer Academy: Shooter’s Edge — Learning to Shoot.

Here is the Second Video from the Shooter’ Edge series, covering Basic Rules of Firearms Safety:

This video series features foundational handgun classes at the SIG Sauer Academy in New Hampshire. The ten-episode series takes viewers into the classroom and onto the range as the instructors walk through the fundamentals of handgun safety, shooting techniques, practice and training exercises, along with instruction in equipment options and handgun selection. The series was shot on location during several of the Academy’s introductory classes.

Click Below to Access Full Video Series on

Shooter's Edge handgun training Sig Sauer Academy

The Shooter’ Edge Series includes the following episodes: Learn to Shoot at SIG Sauer Academy; Basic Rules of Safety; Types of Handguns and Ammunition; Foundational Shooting Techniques; How to Practice and Train Effectively; Choosing the Right Gun; Equipment and Its Purpose; Holsters — Presentation and Recovery; Magazines — Loading and Unloading; and What Happens After Learning to Shoot.

The entire 10-episode series is available on the SIG Sauer Academy YouTube Channel and the SIG Sauer Academy Website.

Shooter's Edge handgun training Sig Sauer Academy

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April 28th, 2024

Sunday GunDay: Modern Military 7.5-lb AR for CMP Matches

AR-15 AR15 A-2 Modern Military Rifle CMP Games iron sights Dennis Santiago

Retro is back — at least in the CMP’s Standard Modern Military Rifle AR class. Though Service Rifle competition has evolved to allow optics and heavy barrel profiles, the Standard Modern Military Rifle (AR category) is truly a “blast from the past”. Overall weight is limited to 7.5 pounds, and the rifle must be equipped with iron sights (Rule 5.2.3). In addition, the rifle must “be based on the M-16 rifle or be based on an AR design” with “exterior configuration similar [to] the original military or military-type rifle”. See Rules.

With this in mind our friend Dennis Santiago has put together his own AR-platform Standard Modern Military Rifle for matches run under CMP Games Competition Rules. This is not quite a classic AR, as it has a metal free-float handguard (vs. plastic handguards), but it IS light (7.3 pounds), and it does have iron sights — a key requirement for Standard Modern Military class rifles. CMP Rulebooks — All Classes.

AR-15 AR15 A-2 Modern Military Rifle CMP Games iron sights Dennis Santiago

Here is Santiago’s CMP Modern Military Rifle (Standard Class) with an ultralight free float tube that has a titanium barrel nut, and mechanical, center-able front sight. The barrel is an AR-Stoner brand 20″-long 1:7″ Government contour chambered in 5.56×45 NATO. Dennis says: “This makes the 7.5-lb weight limit with a few ounces to spare. We’ll see how well it drives soon enough.”

AR-15 AR15 A-2 Modern Military Rifle CMP Games iron sights Dennis Santiago

Dennis explains: “The Standard Modern Military (AR) is a category of military-style rifle that shoots the 200-yard, 30- or 50-shot courses alongside the M1 Garands, Springfields, Vintage, and M1 Carbines. This one boasts a Midwest Industries (MI) ultralight Free-float Handguard and a Yankee Hill folding front sight. Any Government contour or thinner profile rifle-length gas tube barrel with a 0.750″ gas block will work.” Colt makes a suitable Government Contour 20″-long, 1:7″-twist barrel, sold by MidwayUSA.

AR-15 AR15 A-2 Modern Military Rifle CMP Games iron sights Dennis Santiago

To test the accuracy of his rifle, Dennis fitted a Mantis-X unit on the top of the float tube. The Mantis-X records the movement of the rifle to interpolate shot placements. Dennis reports: “I spent some extra time at the range grabbing a decent zero for my Modern Military rifle. I stuck a Mantis-X on it to record a few shots shooting offhand at the plates at 200 yards. It drives very easily even with no shooting coat or glove.” The Mantis-X is attached just forward of the carry handle, on top of the MI free-float handguard. The Mantis-X works with live fire as well as dry fire. It communicates via BlueTooth to a smartphone App.

AR-15 AR15 A-2 Modern Military Rifle CMP Games iron sights Dennis Santiago
AR-15 AR15 A-2 Modern Military Rifle CMP Games iron sights Dennis Santiago

Rifle Shoots Well with 77gr Sierra MatchKings
The gun is presently zeroed with 77gr Sierra MatchKing ammunition. Dennis reports his rifle “can easily hold the X-Ring on an SR target for both 100-yard and 200-yard CMP Modern Military Games matches. And it’s fun to shoot!”

AR-15 AR15 A-2 Modern Military Rifle CMP Games iron sights Dennis Santiago

CMP Standard Modern Military Rifle (AR Class)
This rifle is built from carefully selected and fitted parts to conform to the CMP’s 7.5-pound weight limit iron-sighted rifle rule. Officially, this is a CMP Standard Modern Military Rifle, Class “A” (AR type).

1. S&W M&P lower receiver
2. White Oak Armament match upper receiver with 1/4×1/4-MOA pinned rear sights
3. AR-Stoner 20″ 1:7″-twist 5.56x45mm NATO Government contour barrel from MidwayUSA*
4. MidWest Industries ultralight free-float handguard with a Titanium barrel nut
5. Yankee Hill Machine folding front sight with a 0.072″ square front pin
6. RRA 2-stage trigger
7. A2 length buttstock

AR-15 AR15 A-2 Modern Military Rifle CMP Games iron sights Dennis Santiago

Easy Rifle Build Using Mostly Existing AR Parts, Plus New Barrel and Free-Float Handguard
Dennis was able to put his Modern Military AR together using components he had collected over the years: “Most of these parts were already in my bin of old AR parts available to be recycled. The barrel and free-float handguard were the only new acquisitions.” And with the AR’s modular format, this was an easy build: “Assembly time was about 30 minutes. I’ve done these parts swaps so many times now.”

Key Rules for Standard Modern Military Rifle (AR Type)

Dennis Santiago’s new AR rifle was built as a “Standard U.S. Modern Military Rifle”, Class A (AR Type), as specified in the CMP Games Competition Rules.

5.2.3 Standard U.S. Modern Military Rifles, Class A
Category A Standard Modern Military Rifles must comply with these requirements:

a) Rifles must be based on the M-16 rifle or be based on an AR design;
b) Rifles must be manufactured by a USA manufacturer;
c) Rifles must be equipped with issue-type metallic front and rear sights; rear sights with adjustments finer than one minute of angle are permitted;
d) Total rifle weight, with sights and without sling, may not exceed 7.5 pounds;
e) Rifles may be fitted with a float tube or free-floating handguard. A nonadjustable sling swivel may be attached to the forward end of the handguard; and…
f) The rifle must be chambered for the 5.56x45mm or .223 Remington cartridge.

Also, from Rule 5.2.2:
a) The exterior configuration of the rifle must be the similar to that of the
original military or military-type rifle;
b) The trigger pull may not be less than 4.5 lbs.;

Comments from other Modern Military Rifle Shooters:

“I built a Modern Military [Standard]. It was tough getting below the 7.5-lb [limit]. I had to carve off a bunch of the 20″ barrel diameter but wanted to stay with it for sight radius (over a 16″). I would just as soon shoot that little iron-sighted rifle at 200 yards as my 15-lb Nightforce-scoped Service Rifle. I love that little rifle.” — Kenneth S.

“I’m building one of these that will make 7.5-lb [Standard Modern Military] weight limit, with the long barrel and long sight radius. This has been on my list this winter.” — Tom K.

“We found that turning down a National Match barrel and taking a few inches off of it made a very accurate rifle.” — Jack A.

“My old (complete) A2 upper has been sitting forlorn on a shelf for a couple of years now. Perhaps I need to do a [Standard Modern Military] build of my own.” — Derek D.

Dennis Santiago replied: “Derek — that’s the reason I was attracted to this. I had bought a brand new WOA A2 pin upper receiver to make a new upper then the scope rule was adopted and it was all flat tops. This gives new purpose to the old parts.”

AR-15 AR15 A-2 Modern Military Rifle CMP Games iron sights Dennis Santiago

Standard vs. Unlimited, Class A vs. Class B

AR-15 AR15 A-2 Modern Military Rifle CMP Games iron sights Dennis Santiago

There are actually two different classes of Standard Modern Military Rifles, Class A for AR-type rifles and Class B for other military-style rifles, such as the M1A and FN-FAL. Ok, got that? Now, in addition, there is also a second division for UNLIMITED Modern Military Rifles, again with two classes (Class A — AR-type and Class B — other military rifles). These unlimited rifles can have optics, heavier weights, modern-design adjustable-length stocks, and other upgrades. Here is Rule 5.2.2 from the current CMP Games Rifle and Pistol Competition Rules:


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April 27th, 2024

Wind Reading Basics for PRS and NRL Competitors

Sniper's Hide Frank Galli Wind Reading Book Basics

For many riflemen, reading the wind is the toughest challenge in long-range shooting. Wind speeds and directions can change rapidly, mirage can be misleading, and terrain features can cause hard-to-predict effects. To become a competent wind reader, you need range-time and expert mentoring. In the latter department, Frank Galli, founder of Sniper’s Hide, offers a detailed digital resource: Wind Reading Basics for the Tactical Shooter.

Wind Reading Basics is much more than a 47-page eBook — it has charts, instructions for ballistic calculators, and even embedded videos. Galli explains: “We break down the formulas, walk you through using a ballistic computer, and give you all the information in one place. From videos, to useful charts, we make it simple to get started. It’s all about having a plan, and we give you that plan.”

Galli’s Wind Reading Basics, priced at $7.99, can be downloaded from iTunes for iPads, iPhones and iOS compatible devices. Here are sample sections from the eBook (which includes videos):

Sniper's Hide Frank Galli Wind Reading Book Basics

Sniper's Hide Frank Galli Wind Reading Book Basics

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April 26th, 2024

Don’t Waste Money on Tacti-Cool Gear Says Larry Vickers

Training tactical tacti-cool accessories Larry Vickers AR15 Black rifle

Larry Vickers is a respected firearms trainer who has served with the U.S. Special Operations Forces (SOF). In the course of teaching classes he’s learned that many gun owners waste money on impractical gun accessories. In a well-reasoned article, “Don’t Be a Tacti-Cool Fool”, Vickers examines today’s trend of over-accessorizing firearms, particularly AR-platform rifles. Vickers doesn’t mince words… he states that too many people are spending too much money on poorly-designed hardware that may be “useless” at best.

Equipment Selection Advice from Larry Vickers

Every class I teach I see and hear students talking about the realization that some things about their gear and shooting in general just doesn’t add up on the range. Everything looks good in a Brownells Catalog but a significant amount of the parts and accessories offered on the market today are: a) useless; b) poorly designed; c) of questionable value; or d) downright dangerous.

No one is better at taking fully-functional, factory-made firearms and turning them into junk than a certain segment of the American gun-buying public.

Some people really don’t apply the common sense approach of not messing with what is potentially a life-saving tool. Sadly some of those same people will get on the Internet and talk bad about how the firearm they modified no longer functions and therefore is junk. Or they will recommend to fellow shooters the same parts and modifications they have used to turn their gun into, at best, a range toy.

Training tactical tacti-cool accessories Larry Vickers AR15 Black rifle

Some of this shows up in my classes and usually by lunch on the first day the obvious flaws of the equipment at hand become apparent for everyone in the class, most of all to the owner of said equipment. It may have cost the shooter some money but in turn he learned a serious life lesson –be careful what you read on the Internet about firearms modifications and there is no substitute for shaking out your equipment at the range in a structured class.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: you’ll learn more about guns and shooting in one class than you could in a month on the Internet.

READ about guns, gear, and shooting on the Internet. LEARN about guns, gear, and shooting on the range during well-thought-out and useful training. This approach is proven and consistently produces results and shooter confidence.

In this 51-minute video Larry Vickers responds to questions about gun accessories, his favorite firearms, sensible prepping, and other topics of interest.

Larry Vickers
Master Sergeant (Retired)
U.S. Army SOF Combat Veteran

Larry Vickers is a retired U.S. Army Special Operations Forces veteran with 20+ years of service. Vickers served in Panama, the Middle East (Desert Storm), Somalia, Bosnia, and other locations. During his time with Delta Force, Vickers worked on weapons R&D, and served as a combat marksmanship instructor training new operational members of Delta.

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