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April 6th, 2015

Shoot Air Guns at NRA Meetings & Exhibits in Nashville

Pyramid Air Rifle NRA Convention Meeting Nashvillee TN

What’s the best part about the NRA Annual Meetings & Exhibits? Well, if you’re a kid (or a kid at heart), the answer is the indoor shooting range. Every year, the first place we visit at the NRA Show is the Air Gun Range operated by Pyramyd Air. There you can try out, for a nominal fee, many different kinds of air pistols and air rifles. It’s fun, and its great to see so many young people learning about marksmanship is a safe, supervised setting. (Photos courtesy Pyramyd Air.)

Pyramid Air Rifle NRA Convention Meeting Nashvillee TN

NRA Pyramid Air Air range NRA Pyramid Air Air range

Arsenal of Air Guns
A host of air guns will be available to shoot under the guidance of qualified instructors. You can get your hands on new models from Air Arms, Air Venturi, AirForce, Beeman, Beretta, Benjamin, Crosman, Remington, Swiss Arms, Stoeger, Umarex USA, and Walther.

Pyramid Air Rifle NRA Convention Meeting Nashvillee TN

One of the rifles at the Air Gun Range, the Stoeger Arms X20S, even has a suppressor.

Pyramid Air Rifle NRA Convention Meeting Nashvillee TN

Pyramid Air-Sponsored Air Gun Range Hours and Location
The “Pyramyd Air” Air Gun range will be located in room 103 in Music City Center. The air gun range will be open the following hours:

Thursday, April 9: 2:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.
Friday, April 10: 8:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
Saturday, April 11: 8:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
Sunday, April 12: 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.

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October 2nd, 2013

Lothar Walther Bi-Metal Barrels Are Lighter, and Shed Heat Better

Less weight plus better heat dissipation — Sound good? Here is an innovative barrel technology that promises worthwhile performance benefits for hunters or match shooters. Lothar Walther (LW) has developed a new bi-metal barrel system that cuts weight dramatically while promising significantly-enhanced heat dissipation.

Walther’s Ultra-Lightweight Barrels combine steel with lightweight alloys. This results in a significant weight reduction without the use of carbon fiber, epoxy binders, or other heat-retaining materials. Beginning as an LW50 stainless blank, the barrel is precision-machined to remove excess weight. An outer casing of light-weight alloys is machined and the two are fitted together without adhesives. Basically you end up with the steel inner barrel inside a larger-diameter fluted aluminum outer barrel (see diagram). This gives you the ‘best of both worlds’ — light weight for ease of carry, and thick diameter for rigidity and enhanced heat dissipation. Near the action, the barrel remains all-steel.

The barrels come pre-chambered in your choice of caliber/cartridge, from .22LR up to .338 Lapua Magnum. Walther chambers the barrel — but a gunsmith is still required to finish the shoulder so that the headspace is set correctly for your action. These barrels are not inexpensive. A typical bi-metal Walther Barrel runs $850.00 – $875.00, for barrel lengths from 22″ to 30″. Threading for a muzzle brake or suppressor (if desired) is normally included in that price.

Lothar Walther ultra lightweight bi-metal barrel

Aluminum thermal conductivityWe haven’t tested one of these bi-metal composite barrels, but the potential for significant weight savings is obvious — aluminum is a lot lighter than steel. What’s more, a metals expert we contacted said that a bi-metal system employing fluted aluminum over steel, if assembled properly, could dissipate heat much better than steel alone (given the same diameter). Stainless steel has a thermal conductivity factor of 16. Aluminum has a thermal conductivity factor of 250.*

Our expert also pointed out that some other composite barrel systems on the market actually increase heat retention because they place insulating materials next to the inner steel barrel. (Carbon, Fiberglass, and Epoxy are all considered “insulating substances” as they have very low thermal conductivity*.) The LW system of aluminum over metal should avoid this mistake, our expert believes. Lothar Walther says: “Unlike solid steel barrels, this barrel sheds heat fast. VERY FAST!”

Half the Weight of Conventional Barrels
How much weight can you save? With a 1.200″ shank diameter and a muzzle diameter of 0.850″, the LW Ultra-Lightweight Barrel is less than half the weight of a standard varmint barrel of the same size. Walther claims its UltraLight Barrel can be “carried for long distances and stand up to heavy firing.” This, LW says, makes these barrels “perfect… for varmint and tactical uses”.

Pre-Chambered Ultra-Lightweight Barrels Available in .22 to .338 Calibers
Lothar Walther offers Ultra-Lightweight barrels in a full range of calibers from .22LR to .338. Each Ultra-Lightweight Barrel comes complete with chamber, crown, and breech threads. These barrels are fluted by the factory. If you order a LW Ultra-Lightweight barrel, Lothar Walter provides the services of a specialist trained in building guns with these barrels. To order one of Lothar Walther’s bi-metal barrels, CLICK HERE or contact Lothar Walthar at the address below:

Lothar Walther Precision Tools, Inc.
3425 Hutchinson Rd. – Cumming, GA 30040
Phone: 770-889-9998 | Fax: 770-889-4919
E-Mail: lotharwalther [at] mindspring.com
Website: www.lothar-walther.com

*Thermal conductivity is the quantity of heat transmitted through a unit thickness in a direction normal to a surface of unit area, due to a unit temperature gradient under steady state conditions. The factor values are based on this formula: W/(m.K) = 0.85984 kcal/(hr.m. °C). Here are thermal conductivty values for common materials: Aluminum, 250; Brass, 109; Steel (Carbon 1%), 45; Stainless Steel, 16; Carbon, 1.7; Brick dense, 1.3; Concrete (medium) 0.7; Epoxy, 0.35; Fiberglass, .04.

Story tip from EdLongRange. We welcome reader submissions.
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December 7th, 2011

Gift of a Lifetime — A Smallbore Match Rifle from MT Guns

MT Guns target rifles Anschutz WaltherMany readers will be considering purchasing a rimfire rifle this season for a young family member, or grandchild to use as his/her “first gun”. Of course you can source a 10/22 or other bargain-basement firearm from Walmart, but why not acquire a rifle your boy or girl can use for a lifetime? If you get a high-quality, used bolt-gun, you’ll be providing a rifle that will deliver years of shooting enjoyment, and that will remain competitive as a young shooter’s skill level advances over time.

Where can you find a very high-quality, match-grade rimfire rifle at an affordable price? You can spend weeks watching the auction boards, or you can save time and money by contacting MT Guns in California. Run by Mac Tilton, MT Guns has the nation’s largest selection of quality used rimfire match rifles.

MT Guns target rifles Anschutz WaltherVast Inventory of Target Rifles
Mac, owner of MTGuns.com, has hundreds of “previously owned” rimfire rifles in inventory, including scores of Anschütz models. Most have model 54 or 64 actions in prone or position stocks. Mac also stocks many BSA Martini and Walther match rifles. For a young shooter Mac recommends an Anschütz model 64 action rifle or a model 1407 with a 54 action. Another good choice, according to Mac, is the Walther KK ISU model. Mac’s gunsmiths can cut down the buttstocks of these rifles to fit young marksmen.

Rifles Sourced from Europe
In recent years, Mac has acquired hundreds of match rifles from Europe. Among these were a couple dozen Anschütz prone rifles that are essentially “as new”, still “in the wrap”. Most of the rifles have seen more use, however. For more info, call Mac at (805) 720-7720, from 10 am to 5 pm, Eastern Time.

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December 21st, 2010

New .22LR Rimfire M&P Pistol from Smith & Wesson

Smith & Wesson’s M&P pistols have become quite popular. Many law enforcement agencies have moved away from Glock in favor of the American-made M&P. If you own or shoot an M&P, now you can train with a .22LR version that has the same size, shape, and controls as your centerfire M&P. Smith & Wesson plans to release its new M&P22 semi-auto pistol very soon. Offered with either 10- or 12-round magazines (depending on local laws), the new M&P 22 looks just like its big brother. One large dealer has listed a sales price of $364, based on a $419.00 MSRP, but the guns aren’t available quite yet. We expect to learn more at SHOT show.

Smith Wesson M&P 22

In general, we commend S&W for producing a rimfire clone of its M&P duty pistols. This allows M&P owners to cross-train with inexpensive .22LR ammo, without having to adapt to different ergonomics. Reportedly made by Walther, we suspect the new M&P22 will be reasonably accurate, but we’re skeptical of the quality of the trigger. Hopefully it will be better than the trigger on the full-size M&Ps.

Of course, if you want a superb trigger in a .22LR semi-auto pistol, there is the classic S&W model 41. For $1700.00 to $2000.00 you can find the fully engraved, 50th Anniversary Model 41 in presentation case on Gunbroker.com. First released in 2008, the engraved model 41 combines superior accuracy with stunning appearance.

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November 30th, 2010

Iconic Bond Movie Pistol Sells for $431,840 at Christie’s

James Bond Walther LP 53When is a 60s-era air pistol worth $431,840? When it happens to be the gun held by Sean Connery in promotional stills and posters for From Russia with Love, the second film in the hugely popular James Bond 007 film series. Yes that sinister-looking pistol, which some mistook for a long-barreled, 9mm Walther P-38, is actually just a single-shot pellet gun, a Walther .177-cal Luftpistole (LP) model 53 air pistol to be precise.

The $431,840 Movie Prop
Bond’s LP-53 recently sold at auction in London for £277,250 ($431,840 US) — nearly 14 times the £15,000-£20,000 price Christie’s Auctioneers had predicted. That just proves that there are many action heroes, but there is only one James Bond. Presumably, this shockingly high auction price may drive up the price of LP-53s on the used market. Sorry, there are no Walther LP-53s for sale on Gunbroker.com today… we checked.

James Bond Walther LP 53Why was Connery given an air pistol? Here’s the story behind the choice of the LP-53. As part of the publicity campaign for From Russia with Love, Magnum photographer David Hurn was commissioned to photograph Sean Connery as Bond — holding 007’s signature Walther PPK pistol. But the production crew forgot to bring a PPK to Hurn’s studio.

Photographer Used His Own Gun
According to Christies’ auction lot history: “[W]hen Connery arrived at his studio for the shoot, it was discovered by publicist Tom Carlile that no one had brought the gun needed for the shooter, a small Walther automatic (Walther PPK). By chance David Hurn practiced air pistol target shooting as a hobby and had the air pistol he used for this purpose, also a Walther, to hand. Hurn explained: ‘It was decided that, without telling Sean or the other representatives of United Artists, we would use my pistol for the pictures and [we] presumed that should anyone have doubts, [when they saw] the name Walther on the gun, they would be reassured. This was, in fact, the case.'”

James Bond Walther LP 53

James Bond Walther LP 53Poster Designer Favors Look of Long-Barreled Pistol Over PPK
In theory, the long barrel of the LP-53 air pistol was to be airbrushed out of publicity stills and a PPK was to be substituted when the movie posters were designed. In fact, in one USA-market “James Bond is Back” poster, you’ll see Connery holding an airbrushed, short-barrel Walther. However, Renato Fratini, the lead poster artist, preferred the look of the LP-53. Working from Hurn’s non-airbrushed original photographs, Fratini designed the posters for world-wide distribution with the long-barreled LP-53 in Bond’s hand. The iconic long-barreled Luftpistole was featured in posters for several more Bond movies, including Goldfinger (Japanese poster at right), and The Man With the Golden Gun.

Credit The Firearm Blog for spotting this item in the BBC News.
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March 17th, 2009

Pre-Owned Rimfire Match Rifles at MT Guns

Are you a rimfire shooter looking for an Anschütz action (or barreled action) to use in an after-market benchrest, silhouette, or prone stock (such as the new Elesio AN-1)? You can spend weeks watching the auction boards, or you can save time and money by just giving Mac Tilton a call at his shop in California.

Mac, owner of MTGuns.com, has hundreds of “previously owned” rimfire rifles in inventory, including scores of Anschütz models. Most have model 54 or 64 actions–he rarely gets the 2000-series barrel-block-style actions. But you can certainly build a match-winning rifle from a Model 54. Mac also stocks many BSA Martini and Walther match rifles. Our friend Joe F. recently picked up a used Suhl 150-1 from Mac. This editor has shot that gun and it is amazingly accurate, with a fantastic trigger. (Unfortunately, Mac has only a couple Suhls left.)

Big Shipment Just Arrived from Europe
Mac has just taken delivery of 150 rifles from Europe. Among this batch are a couple dozen 20-year-old Anschütz prone rifles that are essentially “as new”, still “in the wrap”. The rest of the shipment are mostly single-shot Anschütz prone or position rifles, but there will be some other brands in the mix. For more info, call Mac at (805) 720-7720, from 9 am to 5 pm, Pacific Time.

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