Monday, August 29, 2011

Cousin Wallace shoots little guns.

Wallace reports on the Kahr P380.

I continue to be pleased with the little Kahr P380 I purchased a couple of weeks ago. It's still in the "break-in" phase so I fire a few rounds out of it every chance I get. The first session I experienced a few fail to feed stoppages. I have since taken it apart & lubed critical areas. Since then ( knock on wood) I havent had any more FTF issues. It could have been "weak" loaded ammo or something else, who knows.

Yesterday I fired a couple of magazines through it during a quick trip to the range. There were no failures to feed but when both magazines were emptied, the slide failed to lock back. Maybe the ammo was too weak again??? It does have a stiff recoil spring so it may only function best with more potent ammo???

Accuracy was stellar! I only tested two loads @ 7 yards from a standing position and shot fairly quickly....not fast and reckless, but not super slow-fire either. The first 5-shot group with Winchester 85gr Silver-Tip Hollow-Points grouped into 1.25", just about a half-inch to the right of point of aim. Elevation was spot on. The second 5-shot group was with handloads using a 95gr Rainier TMJ. This goup was also a half-inch right and about a half-inch low of point of aim but the group was a mere 7/8ths of an inch! For a teeny pocket pistol, that's match grade accuracy. This little pistol will shoot!

Whilst at the range I conducted a couple of "unofficial" expansion tests by shooting gallon milk jugs filled w/water (placed back to back). Altough this isnt as technical as the FBI protocall series of test firing into 10% ballistic gel through clothing, etc, it does give one an idea of how a bullet might perform. I only had a couple of HP offerings to try, the Federal 90gr Hydra-Shok and the W-W 95gr STHP mentined above. The Hydra-Shok passed completely through both jugs (just barely) and expanded to about .53". The Silver-Tip made it though the first jug but stopped inside the second jug. Expansion from the ST was obviously much more violent as the first jug "exploded" more and the flattened bullet measure approx .67". Both were classic mushrooms. The hydra-Shok could be expected to provide a bit more penetration but the STHP probably would be the more reliable expander. Wish they made a +P Talon for .380.

After returning home I decided to get out the calipers and take some measurements, comparing the Kel-Tec P3AT with the Kahr since they seem so close to being the same size. Below are the measurements (unofficial) so you can get an idea how they compare.

OAL: Kel-Tec = 5.15" - Kahr = 4.82" ---- .33" or about 1/3rd of an inch.

Height: Kel-Tec = 3.63" - Kahr = 3.82" --- less than .2" ( it should be noted that the Kahr actually has a rear sight that sticks up above the frame where the Kel-Tec is just a groove intregal w/the slide. If you measure and ignore the rear sight's height, the measurement was just 3.71" for a difference of less than 1/10").

Slide Thickness: both pistol's slides were 3/4" wide.

Barrel Length: Kel-Tec = 2.62" - Kahr = 2.44" --- less than 2/10" (measured from breech to muzzle)

Loaded Weight: Kel-Tec = 11.5 oz. - Kahr = 14 oz. ( 6 + 1 rds of Silver-Tip ammo )

As you can see, they are pretty close to the same size but their ease of "shootability" is vastly different! The Kahr has better sights, much better trigger, feels better in your hand, noticeably less recoil and very high quality. It is heavier and twice as expensive.

I still like the little Kel-Tec as it has been super reliable and accurate and was inexpensive. It is however, a very difficult pistol to shoot effectively and requires some special "techniques" in order to be able to shoot it with a reasonable degree of accuracy. I think much of the same could be said of the little Ruger LCP since they look almost identical.

I've either owned or shot the Colt Govt .380, AMT Backup, Walther PPK/S and S&W Bodyguard pistols. The .380 ACP has always had some appeal to me as being just about the smallest calibre available in some of the smallest and most concealable handguns. All the above pistols had something I wasnt satisfied with. I've stuck with the little Kel-Tec for several years and will hang on to it. I think the little Kahr P380 will be another one I'll keep as so far, it has impressed me. I made the mistake of giving it to my wife though and she is very proud of it, showing it to all the family with pride. Dont think I'll be getting it back!

As always, I hope this will be of interest. Your comments & experiences welcomed & encouraged.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Up to count deer.

Have to do three spotlight counts of deer at Clarksville to qualify for the doetags. It's an awful trip in the heat. Late night return. Gotta be done and I'm just a little piece of it. Tonight is the night. Always good to see the land up there.

The State Biologist takes the three counts, averages them and figures out how many deer are on the range. Then he determines how many doe tags we get.

Update: Recovering from a late night. 32 deer, mostly does, spotted from Alan's old bronco with a raised seat. Very dry range conditions. For some reason we saw an inordinate amount of raccoons. Couple frantic Armadillos as well. We've seen into the 70s one year and as low as the teens.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Half Dome still killing 'em!

In Yosemite.

17th death this year. Park Rangers have cut the number of people able to be on the Half Dome Trail from 800 to 400. The 800 was without a trail pass. Now they issue 400 trail passes a day. Probably don't issue any during non-peak times. Pretty rough but easy to make a mistake and die.

Someone fell off the Mist Trail the other day. Dead.

Wish I had one more weekend planned there.

Most folks fall off the cables that go up the left side. Latest guy went down the face, right along the black stripe. The Mist Trail is below Vernal Falls about seven miles back from the summit where you really are just getting started on the trail.

Free Krieger Barrel

One of the prizes that came with winning the Vintage rifle Championship was a certificate for a Krieger Barrel. I can get any service rifle barrel or an AR match rifle barrel. Never had a Kreiger- they are too expensive. Trying to decide which one to get. I'm sure I will need another AR barrel sometime, so there's that. Or I could hold a Match rifle barrel in reserve. Might need one of those. I could probably tell the most difference with the AR15. I've shot a lot of Douglas barrels over the years and currently have a Brux barrel on my #1 rifle.

Just called them. 100.00 to cut chamber and finish crown. Still a great deal and very generous of them to give them out.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

1903 A3 Sight Cover

Looking in vain, so far, for a USMC cover with a bigger hood. The bigger hood lets you leave it on during firing so it acts like a shade for the front sight. Might be more trouble than it is worth though during the Springfield Match, when I was videoing MSgt. Julia Watson, she was firing a borrowed 1903A3 that had one. That was the first one I had ever seen in my life.

You might notice I have the really big thick front sight blade manufactured by a friend of mine in Austin, Texas. Makes it much easier to see and is a great improvement over the issued sight blade.

My sight protector just protects the sight. You can't fire with it in place if you want to see the front sight.

Won the Texas State Rifle Association 1903 Springfield Championship with this rifle last year at Terrell. First time ever. Usually shoot pretty well with it at Camp Perry. Shot a couple of doetags with it as well.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

We do what we can.

James Pennington shot this photo of me earlier in the morning over on Viale Range during the Garand Match. He borrowed my rifle to shoot.

Tyler newspaper story about Camp Perry.

Just had a fabulous time shooting Garand, 1903 Springfield and Vintage military Rifle. Love that 1936 Swiss K31.

I've got a little list of trophies, state champs, NM Team award, et. Glad to have every one. Seems like the championship wins you as much as you win the championship. You have to be good AND lucky, and as we all know, that "being lucky" thing doesn't always come around.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Lucie walking.

I ignore the leash laws and just walk Lucie up to Katie's studio every morning. The straight shot is a side street where usually we don't see another car. Four blocks counting every brick. She knows the routine. Several fenced or tethered dogs are on the route, all of whom seem to have gone slightly mad. Lu spends so much nose-time scent gathering that I hate to deprive her of what seems like canine civil rights. There is a whole olfactory world out there that is hard to appreciate by us hominids.

Friday, August 19, 2011

New Video up.

The Newly Distinguished James Pennington on Viale for the M1 Match with my Garand.

James Pennington fires a Garand for the first time at Camp Perry. It's my 1942 Springfield Armory with a CMP replacement stock, Criterion barrel and a trigger job by Rick Crawford. I won the Texas State rifle Association Garand Championship with it last year at Terrell. Glad to be able to loan it out. Jeff Lin fires next door and finishes 37th or so with a 284X6. Good shooting.

Had to fix the link. Fixed.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

TSRA Team Shooting the NTT, Infantry Trophy Match.

Camp Perry for the Infantry Trophy Match. Six shooters firing on 8 targets at 600, 500, 300 yards. Targets up for 50 seconds at each yardline. Jeff Lin, Alan Wilson, Tony Miller, Robert langham, Keith Stephens, Karl Schultz. Dick Curry coaching. We hit the wind at 600 with 4 minutes on the rifles. Missed at 500 and dropped the points and missed squaring the targets. 6th place overall. Lotta work.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Shooter Shuttle

Video of the trolley moving us from Viale Range and the AM Garand Match to Rodriegez Range and the PM Springfield/Vintage match.

Every year it seems like the shooters have bigger carts and more equipment. When I started, many people carried their non-rolling shooting stool, wore their jacket, slung their rifle and carried mat rolled up on a scope stand over their shoulder. There weren't any commercially made rolling carts, only custom jobs made out of bent conduit pipe or lawnmower handles with lawnmower wheels.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

President's 100 Medal and Certificate

Really proud to have this medal, finally. You just get to shoot this match once a year at Camp Perry, ONLY to make this medal. I've shot it for years and been close a few times and far away many times. Glad to have the medal, certificate and hat pin. 21st overall with a 290X6 out of 1251 shooters.

Click Obama's ad so I can buy more ammo with his money! Thanks!

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Range Control Tower Tour, Camp Perry, 2011.

View of the Camp Perry beach from the tower.

Tour of the Range Control tower on the edge of Lake Erie. Visiting the towner in person just requires pushing the button at the bottom of the staircase and being invited up. Tower personel explain how they watch the impact area for boats.

Friday, August 12, 2011

Turtle man.

Guy wades and wallows through ponds catching snapping turtles barehanded. Celebrate diversity.

CMP North Store.

Quick tour to take a look and score a few pens at the CMP North Store at Camp Perry. You do get to see the infamous Garand Lamp made out of ruined parts that was up for raffle.

As usual, click Obama or any ad so I can buy more ammo!

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Garand Rapid-Fire at Camp Perry

New Video of firing the prone rapid at Camp Perry with all the tips I could caption. James Pennington, Distinguished Rifleman, did the video work.

Notes on firing the Garand/Springfield/Vintage Military.

It's just 30 points. You can't make any mistakes. I made plenty and was 10 points away from winning the combined trophy which includes a reproduction 1903A4.

1. Shoot all five sighters. Wood/metal rifles, especially old ones, need to be warmed up to operating temperature. I think the zeros can move enough after they heat up to matter on some of them.

2. Get as close as you can on sights, then dress up the hold. I stopped Julia Watson from moving the ladder rear sight of her 1903A3 with one sighter left. It was shooting low. If she moved it up a click she probably would have shot a seven out the top.

3. Square away the position: Cheekbone on the back of your thumb knuckle, elbow under the rifle, natural point of aim checked and re-checked. It's like a boxing match: you are going to get hit in the face even if you win. Any air between your hand and face and you will get smacked hard. Lip busted by fingertips, et. Cheekbone on the back of the thumbjoint and ride the recoil.

4. I used a suction-cup peepsight on my glasses for the Swiss K31. It sharpened up the ladder sight considerably. That said, managing glasses, stick-on peepsight, the cocking ring of the K31, et is a lot. When we went into the pits it started raining. I'm not sure all those glass surfaces and peeps would have tolerated being wet.

5. Scope the first two rounds in the rapid fire string. I didn't with the Springfield and K31 because I was shooting 5 and 5- reload by stripper clip or magazine. Should have checked. PLENTY of time.

6. Work that offhand. Again, plenty of time. Check NPA and come off if you are taking too long. You can't shoot a bad shot just to get to the next one.

My combined score was 849X17. 859X18 won, so I needed 11 points. I spit up 11 points in the Springfield match alone, firing only a silver. My average score across the three matches was 283. 287 would have won the aggregate 3-gun trophy. I was careless early and my rapids in Springfield and Garand weren't good. Made the difference.

Still very tickled to take home the National Vintage rifle trophy. And the Krieger AR15 barrel. Never had a Krieger.

Please click an ad, ANY ad, even Obama! I need more ammo! Be nice to have Obama buy it for me!

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

USMC Julia Watson firing the 1903 Springfield Match.

Amazing how still she holds the rifle in standing. She borrowed the rifle and then shot the second highest score of the match. Very impressive.

MSgt Julia Watson shooting offhand.

MSgt Watson's prone rapid target: 100X2.

As usual: Please hit an ad before you go so I can buy more ammo!

National Vintage Rifle Trophy Presentation.

A little shameless self-promotion. Really fun to shoot those old Swiss Rifles. I've shot a doetag with mine as well.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

CMP Team Day, the National Team Trophy.

We just never could get anything going. It was over by the time the last pair of the six folks finished shooting. 88s. 90s. Then we shot sitting and were nearly as bad. I shot an 88 and a 94. Two eights, top and bottom and two nines just out of the 10 ring at nine. I saw the low eight and called it a nine. Everything else looked good. Offhand I was outside of call all the way. Never fired a lucky shot. We were better at 300 rapid and OK at 600 but it didn't matter by then. You have to start well.

2841X68 for 14th place out of 53 teams.

Hard to say why. Bummer after shooting so well in the Presidents 100 and National Trophy Individual. You can always take the shooters score from the NTI LEG match two days before, add them up and beat the team score. Coaching and shooting in a group makes us worse.

I shot a desultory 275X11. The USAMU won with a 2932X113.

Alan Wilson and Clay Hefner shoot offhand at 200. Alan has his hat pulled around against the low sun.

On the line at 200 yards, Viale Range.

Alan Wilson explains it all.

Miller, Wilson, Stephens, Hefner, Lin, Langham.

Dr. Jeff lin waiting on 300 rapid.

The always-confident and Distinguished James Pennington.

Alan Wilson waiting on sitting rapid.

Tough Texan Clay Hefner.

Dr. Jeff Lin.

Jeff ready to shoot.

Robert Langham waiting on 600 yards.

The Hogg kids, dead.

Dave Wilson and Ron Chatelaine run the Silver Team.

Dick Curry and Gary watch while someone shoots 300 rapid. 1st Lt Julie Coggshall is scoring us in blonde.

TSRA combined teams, Viale Range after the National Trophy Team Match.

TSRA Gold Team.

James Pennington photographs the TSRA Silver. Dave Wilson and Ron Chatelaine are the coaches.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Vintage Shoes.

Rode over to the range with Jeff Lin. We parked at the back of Viale and rolled our carts the 800 yards down to the 200 yard line for the Garand Match. A first for the week: the grass was dewey and my shoes got wet. They stayed wet all day. James Pennington and I were sharing my M1 and we went to the pull targets first. Good to wait on better light. The first relays are dark and shady. We came out about 8:30 and James, a 3-day old Distinguished Rifleman, shot. It's quick match, just 35 rounds including 5 sighters. My Garand ran well. Five sighters from any position, 10 shots one at a time prone, 10 shots in 60 seconds prone with a reload and 10 shots one at a time standing.
I managed a 283. Jeff shot a 284. Gold Medals. Izzy and James were in the 260s. The Garand match is full of various levels of competitors, the quick and the dead. Big crowd with both ranges running.
Jeff and I had to transition over to Rodriegez Range for the Vintage match and that takes some doing. He went for the rifles back at the car and I rode the trolley over. We arrived the same time.
Real treat: I was squadded with MSgt Julia Watson. We've met a few times but never shot together all by ourselves on the very end of the line. Jeff was right next door. I was up first with my Swiss K31. I'm shooting a little suction-cut peep stuck to my glasses and the ladder sights on the Karabiner. A lot to manage. My 5 sighters were up and down as I got going and the first ten was the first shot for record. The X-ring seemed bulletproof but I shot 100X1 when I went for record. I always shoot all five sighters so the rifle will warm up. and all those wood and metal contact points move to where they are going to be. Prone rapid was a 98X1. Gotta love that straight pull bolt. Rick Crawford found it the easiest bolt to shoot left handed and always shot mine. I shot 91 offhand. 289. I tried to enjoy the last rounds of 2011 at Camp Perry.
Julia shot a borrowed 1903 Springfield next. First time she had ever shot the rifle. I pulled out my video cam. She shot a 293 without breaking a sweat.
In the pits the weather changed and we got rained on, but not as much as the folks on the line. Must have been miserable. There was a rain delay while the Coast Guard ran a search and rescue operation down the shore.
Jeff and I rolled off and I went to find some buff pasters on Commercial Row. We were hungry and the awards ceremony/reception was starting up. Coming out of Champions' Choice so fellow was bragging about being 9th in the Vintage match. I asked him what he shot: 282. Hmmm. I must be at least 3rd of so. We walked over and got a free beer and some bad chips and Pace hotsauce. (We aren't in Texas, that's for sure.) We were about to leave when I remembered the 282 guy. Walked over to ask Shannon Hand. Holy smokes. 289 was going to do it.
They gave me a nice plaque, a certificate for a Krieger barrel and a few trinkets in a bag.
Some Swiss fellow, sleeping in a mountain valley under the green grass had this rifle for about 40 years. Now it's won four Texas Championships and the National Vintage Rifle Championship. I hope he's well.

Marine MSgt Julia Watson firing in the Springfield Match on Rodriegez.

I think this guy lied about his age to join the Marines.

With my Garand on Viale.

Pennington firing the Garand.

Dr. Jeff Lin with his Garand. 284.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Photos from the day.

Commercial Row buzzing.

Mitchell Hogg coming off the 600 yard line after he and Emily shot the Junior Match.

Bransom and Mom.

Mitchell Hogg.

Emily Hogg

James Chesley.

The Billed-up Colton Anderson.

Justin Burns, Clay Heffner and John Izzy sitting on the end of Commercial Row.

Does this tank make my butt look big?

Skipping the Hearst Doubles, glad to have a day off.

Been drinking water, managing the system, sunblocking, aspirin, hat, long sleeves, dried fruit, nuts, blueberries. Watching the wind and running the rifle. Long days. This morning we got up earlier than usual and it was raining. Jeff Lin and I blew off the Hearst Doubles and took the day off. Glad to have a rest.
Katie and I had breakfast in Marblehead in a little place she found yesterday. Had coffee in Port Clinton. Had to buy a battery for the 4-runner at Walmart with a rescue from Jeff. Got to the range just in time to see the disgusted Hogg children come off the line a 600 from the Junior Match. Even Dave was shaking his head. They shot well up close but had a rough, rough time at 600 and lost any chance at a good score.
The good news is: They'll learn. Tough kids.

Emily Hogg.

A grim very Mitchell Hogg coming off the berm at 600 yards. That's good. He's ambitious not to let this kind of thing go on longer than it has to.

Katie talking to Alan Wilson.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

EIC/LEG Match, Camp Perry.

Pennington ready for sitting rapid fire.

300 yard target face, freshly glued.

The X-Man fires them up.

Trolley getting ready to roll to the Rodriegez Pits

Rodriegez Pits, Camp Perry.