Washington State ISSA steel championship 2016

I just signed up for the Washington State ISSA steel championship 2016.

For those of you who might considering participating here are the details:

Match starts: June 18, 2016 @ 8:00 AM · Match ends: June 18, 2016 @ 6:00 PM

Location: Ephrata,WA,98848

The annual steel shoot is here! Come join us for 8 stages of steel targets that will be set in arrays that will entertain and challenge you. As in previous years this will be a trophy match with trophies through at least third in each category and division. Lunch will be catered in and is included in the match fee.
Shooters fees are $60 for the first gun and $20 for the second. Juniors (under 18) shoot for $30 for the first gun and $20 for the second.
Register early, we sold out last year!

General match, with the following divisions:
Ladies, Juniors, Senior(55-64), super senior(65+), defender

Price:
$60

Here is some video from last years event.

Rounds in the last month

Boomershoot made April a busy month and I didn’t do as much reloading or shooting as I usually do. Still I did do some reloading.

Here are my lifetime numbers:

223.log: 2027 rounds.
3006.log: 467 rounds.
300WIN.log: 1351 rounds.
40SW.log: 46649 rounds.
9MM.log: 21695 rounds.
Total: 72189 rounds.

Last month the total was 71352 rounds for a difference of 837 rounds. The only caliber I reloaded was .40 S&W.

Quote of the day—LRRPF52

It is one of the most fun and enjoyable shooting events you can attend in the world.

LRRPF52
Message posted on AR15.com on March 2, 2016.
[He was referring to Boomershoot. I haven’t attended enough different types of shooting events to confirm this but I’m willing to entertain the hypothesis. You should attend next year to test this hypothesis for yourself.—Joe]

Polymer tipped bullets

I have often wondered about the polymer tipped bullets from various manufactures. I have read of people seeing wisps of lead on paper targets that apparently came from lead tipped bullets that melted in flight. If the heat at the tip of a bullet can melt lead then the type of plastic used for bullet tips needs some serious consideration. But, I figured the bullet manufacturers knew a lot more about this than I did and had it all under control.

It turns out this was not the case:

the Hornady engineers observed a convex hump form when charting the new bullet’s drag. The hump was relatively small and usually occurred within the first 100 to 200 yards of flight, and following the hump the drag curve returned to its expected concave climb and drop. The irregularity may have been small and short-lived, but the shift from concave to convex, and back again, seen on the Cd vs. Mach Number graphs could only have one explanation: The bullet itself was changing shape in flight.

It did not take long for the Hornady team to realize it was not the whole bullet changing shape, only the non-metal component—the polymer tip.

The solution, of course, was to find a new polymer:

New polymers were tried and tested, and one was found that met the company’s criteria. With the new material, the Heat Shield Tip was born. Molded as precisely and consistently as previous polymer tips, the Heat Shield Tip boasts glass transition and melting points hundreds of degrees greater than the previous generation’s—475° F and more than 700° F, respectively.

This resulted in higher ballistic coefficients (BCs) which translates into less windage and drop.

My favorite bullet for .30 caliber long range shooting has been the Berger 210 grain VLD bullet. It has a G1 BC of .621. The Hornady 30 Cal .308 208 gr ELD™ Match bullet has a BC of 0.670. From 700 yards away with a .300 Win Mag with Boomershoot conditions this increases the velocity by 60 fps and decreases the drop by 2.6 inches. This isn’t enough of a difference to throw away my existing bullets but I think this is what I’m probably going to replace them with.

Overheard

Barb is a very happy person and expresses this in many different ways. One of the ways is that she makes funny sounds at various times.

She works from home nearly all the time and sometimes when she “commutes” from the bathroom to her desk in the bedroom 15 feet away she will make sounds. Along with the hand motions of driving a car she will make sounds like, “Putt, putt, putt…”.

Yesterday she was kneeling on the floor next to a dresser as I was about to walk past. The area was a little tight for her kneeling at the same time I was walking through and as she shuffled back to get out of my way she started making the sounds of a truck backing up, “Beep! Beep! Beep!…”.

I couldn’t tell you how many different sound effects she has implemented. I just know they all make me smile and laugh. But I do know my favorite so far.

Last night she told me that sometime during the day she put on her holster and was practicing drawing and dry firing as it was suggested in class and the sounds sometimes just spontaneously came out during the practice session. The sounds? It was that of the spurs she imagined she was wearing, “Ching! Ching!”

Quote of the day—LRRPF52

When you put your crosshairs on a small little target 400-700yds away, break the shot, and feel the earth shudder under you, your pants start to get kinda tight…

LRRPF52
Message posted on AR15.com March 7, 2016
[That’s probably not the reason most people find Boomershoot rewarding but if that is the way it works for some people I’m okay with that.—Joe]

Ammunition versus training and practice

From here (via Say Uncle):

It should be obvious that choosing ammo carefully is important. But I hold the opinion that what we carry and shoot in a crisis has a lesser importance than how well we shoot it. In the final analysis, we are all pre-occupied with the wrong ammunition. We should be far more concerned about the ammo we did not fire in practice sessions that precede the day we have to shoot for real.

I am in full agreement. I have had no inclination to change my opinion since I first put up a web page on the topic in 1998.

Steel challenge match results

I attended the Steel Challenge match at the Renton and Fish and Game Club today. I’m moderately satisfied.  I was first in Iron Sighted Pistol (ISP). But there were only three of us in that division. I came in 5th out of 13 in Rim Fire Pistol Iron (RFPI) sighted. I had two jams with the rim fire pistol. I called mulligan with one of them and got to shoot that string over. I was 12 seconds down from the next higher scoring shooter. The four shooters above me are all in the super squad of junior shooters who won nationals last year so I don’t feel bad getting beat by them. They are out of my league.

Compared to last month my ISP time went from 91.41 seconds to 78.37 seconds. I was shooting the reduced power Blue Bullets which almost for certain accounted for some of the improvement.

Comparing my RFPI time to last month I went from 64.47 seconds to 66.19 seconds. This difference is in the noise because we were shooting different courses of fire. These differences will easily account for the differences in time.

Steve, from work, showed up and watched the first stage we shot. He also took some great pictures of me. My favorite is this one:

1039-017

Although there is one picture with brass in the air and another with the gun in recoil that are also pretty cool.

The results:

Combined
Final Name SCSA Class Division Time Stage 1 Go Fast Stage 2 New Steel Stage 3 Focus Stage 4 In And Out
1 Miner, Bradley Jr U RFPI 40.83 8.53 9.76 10.79 11.75
2 Sailer, Christian A86982 U RFPI 41.16 7.35 10.47 12.61 10.73
3 Hong, Robert U RFRO 44.44 7.58 13.87 10.80 12.19
4 White, Alex U RFPI 46.12 10.02 11.22 12.92 11.96
5 Mon Wai, Damon U RFRI 48.91 9.37 13.10 13.17 13.27
6 Alvarez, Cel A15861 U RFPO 49.22 9.23 13.91 13.82 12.26
7 Sailer, Christian A86982 U PROD 50.33 9.86 13.87 13.32 13.28
8 Komatsu, Jeff U RFRO 51.74 12.86 15.58 11.90 11.40
9 Larson, Addison U RFPI 54.09 7.85 15.28 14.94 16.02
10 Kanter, Jeffrey U RFPO 54.54 10.19 16.58 12.13 15.64
11 dong, james U RFRO 58.24 9.93 15.20 17.30 15.81
12 dong, james U OPN 60.48 10.72 16.95 16.73 16.08
13 Meisner, Matthew U RFRO 61.61 9.65 17.06 14.26 20.64
14 Rich, Troy U RFRO 64.13 11.28 16.51 15.28 21.06
15 Huffman, Joseph U RFPI 66.19 10.32 16.85 18.88 20.14
16 Cheesman, Enrique U OPN 66.55 11.42 18.03 15.82 21.28
17 Miner, Bradley Jr U PROD 66.78 13.07 20.11 18.24 15.36
18 Eyi, John U OPN 66.86 12.02 16.11 17.00 21.73
19 Tsang, Keith a71578 U OPN 70.04 15.05 17.92 19.40 17.67
20 Firth, Sam U RFPO 71.30 16.42 17.60 18.27 19.01
21 Mortell, Jeffery U RFPI 74.48 11.58 20.27 19.88 22.75
22 Waak, Jim U RFRO 75.49 10.74 17.81 22.25 24.69
23 Meboe, Greg U PROD 76.31 13.24 19.65 19.82 23.60
24 Meboe, Oscar U RFRO 76.31 11.16 25.78 18.49 20.88
25 Bakken, Lance U RFPI 77.55 15.10 21.03 20.69 20.73
26 Huffman, Joseph U ISP 78.37 13.40 21.12 21.44 22.41
27 Bakken, Lance U RFPO 78.45 13.99 19.71 23.39 21.36
28 Meboe, Joey U RFPI 79.00 10.10 25.02 22.17 21.71
29 Mon Wai, Damon U PROD 79.90 12.52 20.59 24.23 22.56
30 Rich, Troy U RFPO 80.16 16.13 22.42 20.51 21.10
31 Jackson, Duane U RFPI 84.23 12.77 20.00 24.55 26.91
32 Mortell, Jeffery U PROD 87.48 15.57 22.29 25.53 24.09
33 Lai, Daniel TY44166 U OSR 87.70 15.82 20.52 25.63 25.73
34 Lai, Daniel TY44166 U OPN 88.52 15.28 22.24 22.12 28.88
35 Miner, Bradley Sr U ISP 89.35 17.47 25.88 24.22 21.78
36 Komatsu, Jeff U PROD 89.82 16.36 25.68 23.57 24.21
37 Pacczosa, Dan A492542 U PROD 90.23 12.91 20.89 24.74 31.69
38 White, Eric U PROD 94.78 13.64 24.01 29.42 27.71
39 Gile, Conner U RFPI 95.31 10.21 24.97 25.83 34.30
40 Hong, Robert U PROD 98.11 14.55 29.67 27.56 26.33
41 Meboe, Isabelle U RFPI 99.67 11.04 25.66 33.40 29.57
42 Jackson, Duane U ISR 100.72 13.84 26.49 29.15 31.24
43 Kanter, Jeffrey U ISP 101.33 13.62 25.38 28.09 34.24
44 Wood, Sabrina U RFPI 158.27 17.46 42.64 46.29 51.88
45 Whitlock, John U PROD 162.33 23.83 42.29 47.12 49.09
46 Arthur, Alan U PROD 168.60 22.39 58.19 48.84 39.18
47 Gray, Jeff U PROD 179.84 32.85 62.02 38.86 46.11
48 Wood, Sabrina U RFPI

As a counter to the claim that old, fat, racist, white guys dominate the gun ownership ranks I found it interesting that of the seven guys on our squad only two were white guys. There were four people of Asian descent, and one Hispanic.

Barb’s first day of class

Today and tomorrow Barb is attending Insights General Defensive Handgun class. I’ve been teaching her how to shoot and she does well with basic shooting. She just got her holster on Thursday so I have not taught her much about the draw and only the basics of defensive shooting. But I think she is more than adequately prepared for the class:

Prerequisites:

CONCEALED WEAPONS PERMIT or documentation of good character AND BRING THOSE DOCUMENTS WITH YOU TO CLASS. You must be totally familiar and comfortable with your handgun. If you have never shot before or wonder how your gun works we recommend our Handgun Safety and Marksmanship class or our Basic Handgun Safety and Responsibility class.

 

Required Equipment:

Reliable, functional semi-automatic handgun; Belt holster (rigid) with sturdy belt; pants with belt loops; 600 rounds of brass-cased, FMJ ammunition (minimum); minimum of 2 magazines and a magazine pouch; Concealment clothing; Hearing and eye protection.

I think she may be a little bit nervous. She didn’t sleep particularly well last night and said she was thinking about the class a lot. But the clincher was that as she was just going out the door she noticed she was wearing her holster upside down.

Rounds in the last month

I was looking at my 9mm log file a couple weeks ago and discovered some entries that my little program would miss when counting the totals. I fixed the entries which added another 59 rounds. So even though the overall delta from last month is 1521 rounds I actually only loaded 1462 rounds in March. All of them were .40 S&W.

Here are the numbers:

223.log: 2027 rounds.
3006.log: 467 rounds.
300WIN.log: 1351 rounds.
40SW.log: 45812 rounds.
9MM.log: 21695 rounds.
Total: 71352 rounds.

The total for the year is 4598. For all of 2015 I reloaded 9531. I’m on track to reload about four times as many in 2016 as I did in 2015. I expect, at a minimum, I will exceed 80,000 rounds for my lifetime total.

Blue is my favorite color

Both Barb and I like the color blue. But that isn’t the reason I bought a bunch of The Blue Bullets:IMG_5338

I originally bought 250 of them last August because I saw someone else shooting them at a match and I checked out the price and found them to be a good value. I reloaded some and found they were essentially identical in terms of velocity for a given powder charge as other polymer bullets I have been using.

I have reloaded and shot thousands of polymer coated lead bullets. They were always accurate and probably most importantly, with no copper jacket, there is almost nothing coming back at the shooter, range officers, and spectators when shooting them at steel targets in good repair.

Previous to the Blue Bullets my most recent purchase of polymer coated bullets were about 10000 “Master Blaster” bullets I purchased in 2006 or 2007 just as they were going out of business. I have been shooting those in outdoor matches (the indoor ranges won’t let me shoot them) since then. I loaded up the last of those recently and was going to use The Blue Bullets to replace them.

But I got to thinking about it and decided I could use them a little differently. So I purchased a case of bullets from Black Bullets International to replace the Master Blaster bullets for USPSA matches. They are essentially the same price as The Blue Bullets but they are, as you might imagine, black in color like the Master Blaster bullets. All of my Master Blaster bullets are loaded to make major power factor for USPSA matches and I’ll continue to do that with bullets from Black Bullets International.

So what about The Blue Bullets?

I shoot a lot of steel matches. For Steel Challenge matches they don’t specific a minimum power factor (I thought it was 125, but I couldn’t find it online in their rules) for centerfire pistols. For The International Steel Association the rules say a minimum power factor of 120 is required. When I’m shooting USPSA matches I’m shooting ammo with a PF of 175 or more. I could switch to 9mm for steel matches as a lot of other people have done, but I decided to keep using .40 S&W and just make lighter loads. Remember the low recoil loads I was making for new shooters? I’m going to use those research results to give me a low recoil load for shooting steel. And to make it easy to identify which ammo I have in the magazines and ammo boxes I’m going to use The Blue Bullets exclusively for the low recoil loads.

Steel match results

Saturday Barb, Max, and I went to a steel match at the Holmes Harbor Rod & Gun Club on Whidbey Island. Just Max and I were shooting this time. This was the first time Max had ever shot in a match. I suspect Barb will try it sometime, but not yet.

The weather was better than last time but still not exactly warm. The ferry ride was pleasant with a nice view:

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The weather was good enough that our friends Elizabeth, William, and Finn also came out to watch. William and Elizabeth have been telling me for months they were going to watch sometime and they finally made it. They live on the island only about a 10 or 15 minute drive from the gun club. It was Barb attending that made the difference. After the end of the match William shot Steve’s rifle on one stage just to see what an open class rifle is like. Then Elizabeth, William, and Finn checked out the rest of the range. The next day Elizabeth texted me:

We had fun yesterday! Actually considering a membership! Lol. Who knew?!?

Thanks again!

Ahhh yes… More people firmly on our side of the gun issue.

Here are Barb and Elizabeth (the quality sucks because it is a frame grab from my video glasses):

BarbElizabethAdjusted

I have been having problems with the front sight on my STI DVC again (first time details). The plastic shim lasted several hundred rounds so then I got some “Liquid Metal” built up the base of the sight, sanded it down to where it was a tight fit, then used high strength, high temperature LockTite to hold it in place. That lasted for many months and many thousands of rounds. Then it fell off again last week. I tried just the LockTite. That lasted less than a hundred rounds. I then tried just the liquid metal, building up a layer on either side of the sight. That survived a couple hundred rounds at the practice range on Friday and survived the entirety of the Saturday match. Barb and I met some friends at the indoor range Saturday afternoon and the front sight slid way to the left on the first shot. At least it didn’t fail me while at the match.

Sunday I folded up aluminum foil, put it under the sight, such that it made for a tight fit and put LockTite between all the layers, on the base of the sight and on the sight groove. I haven’t taken it to the range for testing yet but will do that sometime this week. I want this problem permanently solved.

Two of the stages were very challenging and I lost a lot of time with my centerfire pistol on them. I did okay with rimfire despite having three failures to feed during the match.

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The following stage is evil. You have to hit the white plate four times then hit the yellow plate once. If you miss the white plate and hit the yellow plate your shots stop counting for hits but they do count for time. Suppose your first shot is a miss on the white plate, hits the yellow plate then you continue to shoot the white plate four times, then the yellow plate for a total time of five seconds. You are scored for four misses with a penalty of three seconds per miss which gives you a time for that string of 5 + 12 => 17 seconds.

I had at least two strings with the centerfire gun and one rimfire gun string with penalties.

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The stage below is not exactly easy either. The yellow swingers are for rimfire and the white swingers are for centerfire. The large yellow plate in the center is the stop plate. The two swingers must change side to count as a hit, and must be hit twice. The swingers are small and a centerfire swinger would sometimes change sides from the impact of the other plate changing sides. I lost a lot of time on the centerfire portion of this.

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Here are the results:


Name Division Match Time
Brian Lawson RF-RI-O 36.40
Steve Mooney RF-RI-O 37.78
Brian Lawson RF-O 43.43
Steve Mooney RF-O 47.45
Jeff Kanter RF-RI-O 57.89
Joe Huffman RF-I 59.22
Austin Drake RF-RI-O 59.83
Mitch Hardin RF-RI-O 62.01
Sean Drake RF-RI-O 64.00
Jeff Drake RF-RI-O 64.84
Jim Dunlap RF-RI-O 70.93
Jim Dunlap RF-O 74.50
Darrin Rapoport RF-O 77.13
Adam Rapoport RF-O 80.56
Brian Lawson CF-I 86.10
Adam Rapoport CF-LR 92.59
MAC RF-RV-I 93.82
Joe Huffman CF-I 96.43
Max L. RF-I 97.50
Ken Wu CF-I 106.27
Jeff Kanter CF-I 108.51
Jeff Drake CF-I 110.27
Mitch Hardin CF-I 113.27
Darrin Rapoport CF-O 116.58
MAC CF-I 141.55
Dennis Bohling CF-I 161.56

RF-RI-O: Rimfire Rifle Optics
RF-O: Rimfire Pistol Optics
RF-I: Rimfire Iron sights
PCC-O: Pistol Caliber Carbine Optics
RF-RI-I: Rimfire Rifle Iron sights
CF-I: Centerfire Iron sights
PCC-I: Pistol Caliber Carbine Iron sights

Even with the problems my times were pretty good. The times represent 100 hits (five stages of four strings, with five hits per string). So the average time per hit with rimfire was 0.5922 S. With centerfire it was 0.9643 S. The last steel match I went to, March 13th, I had average hits times of 0.7675 S and 1.0882 S. On February 27th it was 0.6567 and 0.9233. And on February 14th it was 0.7125 S and 0.9271 S.

Of course the stages were different but I’m pretty sure my rimfire shooting is getting much better and I think the centerfire is better as long as I take enough time to get hits instead of something approximating “spray and pray”.

Steel challenge match results

The forecast was for 100% chance of precipitation for every hour of the match at Renton today. Although the sun did break out for about 45 minutes of the hour from 12:00 to 1:00 the forecast was technically correct. They had canopies over the shooting areas, I wore a good hat, rain pants, and a waterproof coat so I stayed dry. But I didn’t wear warm enough clothes and I got rather chilled. And once I spent a few minutes in the car to warm up. Next time I’ll bring more clothing options.

I hadn’t practiced all this week and the first few stages I shot (my stage shooting order was 2, 3, 4, 1) demonstrated this.

Still, I had fun.

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The Leprechaun

Final Name SCSA Class Division Time String 1 String 2 String 3 String 4 String 5
Raw P Raw P Raw P Raw P Raw P
8 Huffman, Joe 29386 U RFPI 13.53 5.01     3.93     3.36     3.24     3.00    
15 Huffman, Joseph   U ISP 18.99 7.08     3.94     3.55     4.71 6.00 4.42  

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Lucky Charms

Final Name SCSA Class Division Time String 1 String 2 String 3 String 4 String 5
Raw P Raw P Raw P Raw P Raw P
13 Huffman, Joe 29386 U RFPI 13.69 3.56     3.60     3.57     2.96     3.87 3.00
29 Huffman, Joseph   U ISP 22.49 4.57     7.24     6.08     6.84     5.00    

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Final Name SCSA Class Division Time String 1 String 2 String 3 String 4 String 5
Raw P Raw P Raw P Raw P Raw P
12 Huffman, Joe 29386 U RFPI 17.65 5.07     3.64     4.41     4.90     4.70    
18 Huffman, Joseph U ISP 24.35 8.05     5.46     6.85     6.34     5.70    

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Saving Ammo

Final Name SCSA Class Division Time String 1 String 2 String 3 String 4 String 5
Raw P Raw P Raw P Raw P Raw P
17 Huffman, Joe 29386 U RFPI 19.60 3.77     2.95 6.00 3.75     13.53     3.13    
25 Huffman, Joseph U ISP 25.58 4.83 9.00 7.53     6.15     5.09     6.81    

My guns worked well except for one failure to properly strip a round out of the magazine with my .22.

The complete results are here, but the divisions in which I participated are below.

Rim Fire Pistol Iron (RFPI)
Final Name SCSA Class Division Time Stage 1 The Leprechaun Stage 2 Lucky Charms Stage 3 Renton Plate Rack Stage 4 Saving Ammo
1 Sailer, Christian A86982 U RFPI 36.48 10.81 8.35 9.41 7.91
2 Larson, Addison   U RFPI 51.08 11.58 12.51 14.47 12.52
3 White, Alex   U RFPI 58.12 24.61 10.49 12.09 10.93
4 Huffman, Joe 29386 U RFPI 64.47 13.53 13.69 17.65 19.60
5 Meboe, Joey   U RFPI 79.71 27.53 13.48 22.91 15.79
6 Jackson, Duane   U RFPI 92.22 21.49 18.36 35.97 16.40
7 Gile, Conner   U RFPI 94.04 23.72 16.64 25.50 28.18
8 Kenny, Dan A23624 U RFPI 99.40 17.49 16.67 33.26 31.98

Iron Sighted Pistol (ISP)
Final Name SCSA Class Division Time Stage 1 The Leprechaun Stage 2 Lucky Charms Stage 3 Renton Plate Rack Stage 4 Saving Ammo
1 Dougan, Brian   U ISP 85.79 22.56 20.07 24.71 18.45
2 Komatsu, Jeff   U ISP 89.62 20.04 22.42 24.73 22.43
3 Huffman, Joseph   U ISP 91.41 18.99 22.49 24.35 25.58

Quote of the day—Hognose

The guy or girl who holsters a .45, or a Beretta, or a Glock, or an M&P, or a Chief’s Special five-shot revolver, for that matter, and closes the book on pistol selection can get on to the more serious business of pistol training and practice. The principle resource that satisficing can buy you is time, which is the one resource you can’t buy or produce more of, and the one resource that is ever in short supply.

Hognose
January 25, 2016
Pistols & Optimizing vs. Satisficing
[H/T to Tamara.

Greg Hamilton has insight on a closely related topic which is relevant here as well:

If during the time you were reading the latest “stopping power” article you were instead practicing to save your life you would be far, far ahead.

You should spend far more of your time and money budgets on training and practice than on your equipment. I know this is difficult and it’s easy to run down the equipment rabbit hole but try to avoid it.—Joe]

Speer Gold Dot Short Barrel expansion test

I recently hand loaded some 180 grain “Gold Dot® Short Barrel®” rounds in .40 S&W. Yesterday I did the promised “chronograph and water jug testing”. Here are the results:

Powder: 3.9 grains of Bullseye
Primer: WSP
OAL: 1.132

10 shots over the chronograph from 10 feet away.

Minimum velocity: 814 fps
Maximum velocity: 864 fps
Mean velocity: 838.1 fps
Standard deviation: 15.5 fps
Power Factor: 150.86

The water filled milk jug test was to determine if the bullets would expand at this relatively low velocity. The 0.401 bullet expanded to just under 0.6 and retained nearly 99% of it’s mass:

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This is very good.

Brother Doug was a little worried that with the lower velocity perhaps a non-expanding bullet would be better for self defense because of the better penetration. Would it penetrate deep enough to “do the job”? I didn’t have any ordinance gelatin but my guess is that it penetrates just fine. They fully traversed three one gallon milk jugs filled with water. This is just under 18 inches of water.

I didn’t expect it would penetrate that far and for my first shot I only used two jugs for depth and put one on each side of the rear jug in case the bullet didn’t go straight after hitting the first jug:

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It fully penetrated the two jugs and I was unable to find the bullet in the berm.

The second time I changed the configuration to just three jugs lined up in a row:

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Again the bullet penetrated all the jugs but I found the bullet just sitting on the ground behind the jugs.

Rounds in the last month

I didn’t load quite as many rounds as I expected I would this month. I have about 400 practice rounds left over from the class I took and enough match ammo such that I’m not feeling any pressure.

I loaded a total of just 700 rounds this month. 301 of those were the self-defense ammo for my student. I plan to do some chronograph and water jug testing with them this weekend.

I’m just under 70,000 rounds for my lifetime total:

223.log: 2027 rounds.
3006.log: 467 rounds.
300WIN.log: 1351 rounds.
40SW.log: 44350 rounds.
9MM.log: 21636 rounds.
Total: 69831 rounds.

Steel match results

Saturday I went to a steel match at the Holmes Harbor Rod & Gun Club on Whidbey Island. It was raining in Bellevue when I left home but as I got on the ferry the rain had stopped, the fog was lifting, and the cloud cover was breaking up. I had forgotten my coat and was extremely pleased with the change of weather.

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As is usual the stages were well done and interesting:

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My .22 worked well. I had one failure to feed but other than that it was great.

My STI DVC Limited gun broke the ejector and when I took the slide off to clean it Friday night the ejector fell on the floor. The front peg had broken off flush with the frame. I didn’t have a spare ejector so I ordered an ejector, ejector pin, and a special ejector drill bit from Dawson Precision. Of course I wouldn’t have it in time for the match the next day so I had to use a backup gun. It worked fine until the fourth stage when it locked up and wouldn’t cycle. I removed the slide but couldn’t see anything wrong even though, at first, it wouldn’t work right even with the recoil spring and barrel removed. Then it started working, I put it back together and finished the stage. Then on stage five the hammer started not resetting. The first time it happened I racked the slide again and continued without incident on that string. Then on the next string it happened twice and I just thumb cocked it. It was almost as if I were shooting single action in a cowboy match—without ever practicing that way.

Yesterday I cleaned and examined my backup gun. I think the disconnector was worn so I replaced it with a spare I had. I’ll take it to the range and test it soon.

Even with the gun problems I shot well enough to win in both classes (I was the only shooter with a iron sighted rimfire pistol, so that doesn’t really count even though I had a good time):

Holmes Harbor Rod & Gun Club February 2016 Speed Steel Scores

Name Class Time
Brian Lawson RF-RI-O 41.59
Steve Mooney RF-RI-O 43.10
Brian Lawson RF-O 45.96
Steve Mooney RF-O 47.13
ED RF-RI-O 55.45
Jeff Kanter RF-RI-O 55.66
Joe Huffman RF-I 65.67
Dennis Bohling RF-RI-O 72.73
Brian Lawson RF-RV-I 76.32
Jim Dunlap RF-O 77.53
Larry Languille PCC-I 85.82
Rev Barchenger RF-O 86.53
Joe Huffman CF-I 92.33
John Hamilton CF-I 93.73
Ken Wu CF-I 106.10
Jeff Kanter CF-I 106.14
Jeff Sparks CF-I 115.59
Dennis Bohling CF-I 140.70
Scott Bertino CF-I 170.78
Bruce Barchenger CF-I DNF

RF-RI-O: Rimfire Rifle Optics
RF-O: Rimfire Pistol Optics
RF-I: Rimfire Iron sights
PCC-O: Pistol Caliber Carbine Optics
RF-RI-I: Rimfire Rifle Iron sights
CF-I: Centerfire Iron sights
PCC-I: Pistol Caliber Carbine Iron sights

In the video below I only included one of the better runs for each class of gun I shot on each stage except for when I shot the string cocking the hammer by hand. I edited one string of fire to included a comment from the Range Officer after I finished which Barb liked. I’m hoping this will be a more interesting video and not so long and boring. Also seeing things mostly done correctly is probably better than seeing a lot of errors.

The Gun State

Interesting. Idaho is state most dependent on gun industry, report finds:

Idaho depends more on the gun industry than any other state, according to a study by the financial website WalletHub. Idaho ranked No. 1 among states and the District of Columbia based on firearms industry activity in the state, gun ownership and overall prevalence, and gun politics — specifically, contributions by gun control and gun rights groups to members of Congress.

Idaho, The Gun State*. I could live with that.


* Idaho’s official nickname is The Gem State.