50 rounds through Kat’s AR.  All loads were made with PMC brass, with Hornady Bulk (from MidwayUSA)  55gr Spire Point on top of 26grs of BLC-2 that was sparked by a Federal Small Rifle Primer.  Shot using iron sights from 100+ yards off sandbags, 6 O’clock hold.

The gun was thoroughly cleaned over the weekend and no fouling shots were fired.

Trip 41 1

The first four targets.






Trip 41 2
Target #1

Using my calipers I make this target 5.4″ Center to Center (C2C) for the widest two shots, and 4.4″ High x 2.11″ Wide.





Trip 41 3
Target #2.  3.32″ C2C and 2.55″ High x 2.22″ Wide







Trip 41 4
Target #3.  4.65″ C2C and 3.95″ High x 1.52″ Wide.







Trip 41 5
Target #4.  3.42″ C2C and 2.94″ High x 2.15″ Wide.







Trip 41 6
Target #5 (photo taken that evening on our dinner table).  2.38″ C2C and 2.15″ High x 2.78″ Wide.






With the exception of the last target I’ve noticed that most of my targets (today and other days) seem to have more height then width,  I rather expect that is me and not the gun.  I find it easier to index the front sight left to right on the target then I do up and down.

Oh well, just another reason to keep reloading and shooting.

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Trip 39 and 40

Lunch Friday was trip 39, and I just shot Kat’s AR.  I need to clean it and load some more and test it again.

Trip 39 & 40 1 Trip 39 & 40 2
Not as good as it has done, but perhaps (more testing is needed) as good as it can do with the shooter and the loads.

I’ll give it a good cleaning and load some more ammo.  This was some bulk pack Hornady 55gr bullets, loaded on top of BLC-2 and a Wolf Small Rifle primer.

Trip #40 took place Friday after work.  More range time with the Winchester Model 94 in 44 mag, but first a couple of cylinders of 44mag from my Mountain Gun.

The loads were a 265g Ranch Dog cast bullet, gas checked, over 9.5gr and 10gr of RUnique, shot off sandbags at 25 yards.

Trip 39 & 40 3 Trip 39 & 40 4

Not bad…. NOT GOOD but it could have been a lot worse.  I did find out while shooting the 10gr loads that my crimp was not strong enough and the bullets were creeping forward.  In fact after 5 rounds of the first set of 10gr loads the revolver jammed and would not rotate the cylinder to bring the 6th round into play because the last round up had had the bullet creep out enough to jam on the barrel.  So, just as a field expedient, for the second set of 6 with 10gr RUnique I loaded 2 and fired two.  Lather, rinse and repeat twice.  I’ll have to repeat both of these loads with a stronger crimp.
Trip 39 & 40 5 Trip 39 & 40 6
Next up was the Winchester.  This time I foolishly decided to try it at 100+ yards.

My first 5, 10gr RUnique over a 280gr LBT WFN boolit), at 100+ put one on the cardboard and 3 on the wood under the cardboard.  Where the fifth went I don’t know.  The windage was OK however.  I cranked in a lot of UP and shot again,  4 were nice to me and one decided to be a jerk and go high.  A little more UP was applied and another 5 shot and the pattern repeated itself.

Trip 39 & 40 7 Trip 39 & 40 8
With 10.5gr RUnique the loads started to open up.
Trip 39 & 40 9





At 11gr’s the groups went straight to hell.  2 of the group are about 15″ to the right and where the 5th one when DOG alone knows and HE is not talking.

I might try these bullets with 2400 and see how that does but from now on, at least for a while, I’ll do my testing with this rifle at 50 yards.

It’s better for my ego.

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Range days 36, 37, and 38

Quite simply Monday (trip #36) may have been the most frustrating day I’ve ever spent at the range.  I’ve had a few problems with Kat’s Match Rifle (in training), mostly because the major suppler of parts used a cheap front sight base (FSB).  A REAL M16/AR15 etc has a FSB that is pinned onto the barrel

The FSB supplied by Model 1 Sales is held on by 4 LITTLE set screws, 1/16th allen wrench, size.

NM Front Sight

Notice the LITTLE set screws?  Each one takes a tiny bite on the barrel.  Supposedly instructions shipped the upper that said, in essence “sight the gun in and then LocTite the sucker”.  I saw no instructions, or LocTite.    So there I was shooting right along when the gun quite ejecting and suddenly started shooting 3″ to the left, right, the entire front sight base had shifted to the left.  This had the effect of cutting off the gas supply (hence the lack of ejection) and shifting the point of impact to the right

So Saturday I cleaned the barrel and FSB and mounted it as centered as I could judging from the scars left on the barrel from the set screws.  I loaded up some ammo and went out on Monday and missed the broad side of a barn.  I spent my entire lunch trying to get it back on the paper at 25 yards.

That may have been worse then Tuesday (trip #37) when I got to the range and discovered that the night before while cleaning out my range bags that I’d left my staple gun and tape out.

Today, trip #38 I at least got it on paper

23.5g BLC2
Even after playing with it at 25 and 50 yards I was still shooting high and right at 100+, it took a few shots to walk it in.






24 BLC2
At least I’m on paper.  Unfortunately I used almost all my right windage to get to here.






24.5 BLC2
6 or 8 clicks to bring it mostly on center and I’m out of time.  Back to work I go.






I’ll be replacing the FSB with this.

From Armalite, about $50 for the whole shebang.  Clamp that on, sight the rifle in and adjust the windage to be centered by tilting, ever so slightly, the FSB. Then LocTite that bugger.  Then I’ll be happy, and I’ll have most if not all of my Left and Right windage still available if/when needed.

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Range trips #34 and 35

Between the two trips I shot 40 rounds of 38 Special, all at 5-7 yards.  Drawn from concealment and shot in pairs.  I tried using a shot timer app on my Smart Phone but it was a waste of my time and effort.

I want one of these.

PocketPro 2

A Competition Electronics Shot Timer

The Pocket Pro 2.  It will (try to) keep me honest about my draw times, it will also let me safely work on speeding up my draw times and my splits (time between shots).

I guess it’s another thing to save my nickels for.


Along with the 38 I also shot about 80 rounds from the Springfield Armory XD.  At 10+ yards shooting 2 handed and strong and weak hand as well.

I’m slower single strong hand then I am two handed and much slower with my weak hand. How much slower?  No one knows.  That’s why I need to invest in a shot timer.

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Trip #33

Lunch, just me and a 44 Mag.  Sounds almost dirty, Dirty Harryish that is, but in this case the 44 was once again my Winchester Model 94 in 44 Mag.

29 rounds to shoot.  Why 29?  Well I was originally planning on shooting 4 rounds per group for 8 rounds per load for a total of 24 rounds.  I loaded 5 additional rounds of the various loads, just in case I had to make a sight adjustment.  At the last minute I just said the He(( with it and shot five 5 round groups and one 4 round group.

Win94 44  1


50 yards from sandbags, with a scope.  9.5gr Russian Unique, RP Brass, Wolf LR primer and a hard cast Wheel Weight LBT 280g WFN bullet.  No Gas Check.  Home cast and home lubed with Ben’s Red.

The first shot from a dead cold bore went high.  Total group size for 5 was 6.25″ H x 1.25″ W.  4 shots into 1.75″ H x 3/4″ W.

All groups measured “Center to Center”

Win94 44  2


Same load 9.5gr R.Unique, 5 shots in 2.75″H x 1″ W





Win94 44  3
10.0grs R. Unique  5 shots into 1.75″H x .5″W.  4 shots into a .5″ group.

If I was smart I would have stopped right there and retired the rifle.




Win94 44  4
No one ever said I was smart.


Again the load is 10.0grs R.Unique and a 5 shot group of 2.25″H x 5/8’s” W group.




Win94 44  5
10.5gr R.Unique giving 5 into 4″ H x 2″ W.  More like a 2″ group if I throw out the flyer.

Of course If I were to throw out all 4 flyers I’d have a 0.0″, center to center, group.




Win94 44  6
The last group and the only 4 shot group of the day. 1.25″ x 1 7/8’s” W


All in all not bad for me, the gun or cast bullets.  In the past I’ve shot this gun with other bullets that I’ve cast from other molds and the target was closer to something a shotgun would produce, not a rifle.  After slugging the bore I called and talked to Veral of LBT and discussed the gun with him.  He recommend (as I recall, it’s been several years) his 280 gr (non gas checked) WFN bullet at .433″.  As I recall the mold drops them around .4335 or a little larger and I size them to .433″ with the results you have seen.

I think I’ll load up another series of loads, with 10.0, 10.5 and 11 grs of R. Unique and see how they do.  Thinking about it however, I need to see how many of those bullets I have left.  I may need to spend a weekend or two casting.

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Ever wonder what happen to live ammunition in a fire?

Or if you drop it or crush it?

Well if you watch this video you will know.  Shot, dropped from 65′, crushed under a bulldozer and set on fire.  10’s, 100’s and 1,000’s of rounds.

I honestly had read and heard this before and figured I’d watch 5 minutes of the video to confirm what I knew.  25 minutes later the video was done.

Posted in Bullet Casting / Reloading, Education, Firearms | Leave a comment

Two words I never thought I would hear together. “Feral Chihuahua”

Thousands of stray Chihuahuas roam Bay Area neighborhoods


Chihuahuas have been popular for years, thanks to movies like “Beverly Hills Chihuahua” and celebrities’ taste for toting the little dogs in purses. But now they’re turning up in huge numbers as strays – either abandoned, escaped or feral.

At the East Bay SPCA, well over half the 3,000 dogs that come in annually are small dogs, and most of those are stray Chihuahuas, said Director Allison Lindquist. In a 24-hour period this week, the facility received five Chihuahua puppies. That’s not unusual, she said.

Some people just should not be allowed to have dogs.

Note that there is only one Chihuahua in this photo.

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Trip #32

Only 35 (actually 40) rounds of 45 acp were shot, all through the Springfield Armory XD.

I got to the range and got myself set up to shoot, then I started talking with one of the ORF’s* who was shooting next to me.  Well we both ended up spending more talking then shooting.  He tried 5 rounds through the XD and had good things to say about it and then we talked about AR’s, M1 Garands, M14’s, reloading and shooting in general.

So even though I only shot 35 rounds during lunch, it was time well spent.


*An ORF is sort of like an OAF (Old Airport Fart).  He is a retired gentleman who spends lots of time at the R = Rifle and or Pistol Range or A = Airport.
I respect ORF’s.  I know one or two who have been shooting for longer then I’ve been alive.  They may not be fast but mostly they hit what they aim for.
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Range Trips #30 and 31

Sunday Kat and I made it to the range so she could shoot “Her” AR15.  Kat shot 50 rounds, 10 rounds at a time.  Her first two groups were at 50 yards, just getting used to the rifle and to allow me to see if the sight settings I used would be close enough for here.  It was, so then we moved to over to the 100 / 200 yard range.

Her best group had all all 10 rounds on the paper plate, after I made a slight sight adjustment.  A little wide with one or two flyers but a pretty decent group considering her inexperience with the gun and its marginal trigger pull.

Since I have a little powder that can be used with this cartridge, last night I loaded 30 rounds with AA2520 under a Sierra 69gr HPBT match bullet in PMC brass and using a Federal Small Rifle Primer. 10 rounds each of 24gr, 24.5gr and 25gr of AA2520.

From the bench, off sandbags with iron sights at 100+ yards

AR AA2520
The 24gr load measures 4″ H x 3″ W

The 24.5gr load measures 4 3/4″ H x 4 1/2″ W

and the 25gr load measures 3 3/4″ H x 3 1/4″ W

The 25gr load pulled hard right with the same sight picture as the other two loads and also had some ejection problems.  Looking at the primers from 24gr to 25gr I would guess that pressures were running hot.  I think I’ll repeat this with 23.5gr and 24grs and see how they do.

Now all I need is a competition ready sling, and a jacket for Kat.  Well that and some more bullets and powder.

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Did you know

That typing “I hate iTunes” into Google will bring up 38,600,000 matches.

That almost approaches my loathing of it.

Hell I don’t even have an iPhone and I despise that program.

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