Boomershoot 2024 Stuff

Quote of the Day

At Boomershoot, the targets are specially designed for long-range precision shooting and are quite unique. They are high explosive, reactive targets that can be engaged up to 700 yards away1. The smallest and closest targets are 4-inch square boxes filled with a potassium chlorate-based explosive paste. For longer ranges, the targets are larger, 7-inch square boxes, with more explosive material to ensure visibility and reaction at the distance2.

These targets are designed to provide immediate feedback when hit by a supersonic rifle bullet, resulting in a high explosive reaction that is both visible and audible from long distances. It’s what makes Boomershoot an exciting event for participants and spectators alike

Conversation with Microsoft’s AI, Copilot, on April 12, 2024

The quote above was in response to “What kind of targets are used at Boomershoot?” The only things that are slightly in error are that the explosive has more ammonium nitrate than potassium chlorate and it is not really a paste.

I’m just amazed at how accurate Copilot is with Boomershoot stuff. Ironically, it makes more mistakes with computer programming questions. If you have questions about Boomershoot and don’t want to go digging around the website or wait for someone to answer your email, just ask Copilot.

In related news, Boomershoot was a great success this year. There were no injuries reported. Everything was very close to on time. Nothing was more than about 10 minutes late. We met are target production goals. As near as we could determine there were no targets which failed to detonate other than those which were hit and damaged by flying debris from other targets. There were only four targets left undetonated at the end of the day. These were three 4” targets and one 7” target. The weather on Sunday was damp but not miserably so. The light rain at the end of the day eliminated the risk of spontaneous combustion of the chemicals the next day.

We had people who came all the way from Arizona, Minnesota, Nebraska, and Scotland(!!!!) just for Boomershoot.

Kevin Baker (of The Smallest Minority) attended with his sister and made this video of the opening fireball.

This is the same fireball from a different angle:

Of possible interest is I was giving a tour of my underground bunker to some of the Boomershoot Staff when the Precision Rifle Clinic participants started detonating their targets. We were a half mile away and we could clearly hear the detonations through the ground.

An existing connection was forcibly closed by the remote host

The website for Boomershoot entries uses an email API to automatically send email to entrants and for sending out mass emails to the announcement list. This had worked fine for Boomershoot 2023. But as I was ready to announce Boomershoot 2024 in early summer it failed with an error:

Azure.RequestFailedException: The underlying connection was closed: An unexpected error occurred on a send. —>
System.Net.WebException: The underlying connection was closed: An unexpected error occurred on a send. —>
System.IO.IOException: Unable to read data from the transport connection: An existing connection was forcibly closed by the remote host. —>
System.Net.Sockets.SocketException: An existing connection was forcibly closed by the remote host at System.Net.Sockets.NetworkStream.Read(Byte[] buffer, Int32 offset, Int32 size)

I worked on the problem for quite a while (many hours off and on over several days). Then I tried using a different provider for the email service. The same exact error occurred.

Frustrated, I would set it aside for a month or so and worked on it again on some weekends. No luck.

People realized that the web site actually accepted entries even if it had not been announced. Then, a couple months ago, to my great surprise, I discovered that about 10% of the time the email did work. WHAT?!! Is it a timing issue? I did lots of experiments without success.

Yesterday, I started doing web searches with various search parameters to try and find the solution. Somewhat buried on one web page I found a suggestion, put this in your C# program anyplace before you attempt to make your connection with the other server:

ServicePointManager.SecurityProtocol = SecurityProtocolType.Tls12;

Since the web page was several years old I first tried using Tls13, newer is better, right?

No luck.

So I tried the original suggestion, Tls12. This worked.

There was great joy in Boomershoot land!

I’m making the blog post about this so perhaps other people can find the answer more easily than I was able to.

The complete error (exception call stack) is below the fold.

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Boomershoot 2024 is Open For Entries!

Boomershoot is just 10 weeks away!

As some of you know I had problems getting email to work reliably. Hence the opening of Boomershoot entry is much later than normal. The website is now working well and entries are being processed correctly.

There were numerous people who discovered the site was accepting entries even though I had not announced it. There are still 34 great shooting position open so even though you didn’t get signed up as early as usual, you still have a chance to join the party.

Don’t miss out. Sign up soon: With a ton of explosives it will be a real blast!

See for more information about this amazing event.