Tuesday, February 25, 2003

It has been days since I've done anything really shooting related.

I have been cleaning the reloading area and made room for more bullets. I'm also going through things looking for AR-15 related gifts for my son-in-law. I bought some .25 VMax 75 gr. bullets for the .25-35 and a new powder trickler for use with those darn fine ball powders like H110 that bind up my old trickler. Last, I ordered some Hornady .41 cal XTPs for the .41 Mag barrel.

Thursday, February 13, 2003

I'm happy to report that I received a set of RCBS carbide dies for the .41 Magnum today. Whooohooo! Now to settle on a bullet. Any suggestions? In the load tables, the 170 has the highest energy figures but I'd lean to a 210 or heavier, maybe even a 275 LFN (LBT design) GC.

Also, I need to acquire a set of .25-35 dies.

All this going on and Mike Bellm is trying to get me to get a .250 Imp (using .444 Marlin or .307 Winchester cases). Then, a .358 Bellm? A .32-20 with a .312 bore? Heck, I've not wrung out everything else yet and my dear wife wants to go to "someplace" for spring break. YUCK!

Wednesday, February 12, 2003

As mentioned yesterday, I've been reorganizing my shooting stuff. This was initiated by the use of my son's former bedroom as an office. This has followed the usual way of things and one task has beget another.

I never realized just how much "stuff" I have. Ammunition for all my Contender barrels and other guns, collected accessories, hunting clothes, keepsakes from various hunts and my own and my father's time in the military, etc., have taken up residence in sort of a hodge-podge with a life of it's own. Labeling, organizing and cleaning have been the major sub-tasks of this general house cleaning. Fortunately, the weather has cooperated being either too windy, too cold or both for me to spend much time outside or do any constructive range work. At least there's room in the safe for everything.

However, new stuff continues to come in. I'm now waiting on some 350 .25-35 Winchester cases to wend their way here. I'll need dies, bullets (and a plan for loading), and storage for that as well. I'm thinking I'll need to redo my bullet and powder shelf.

Watched "Safari Hunter's Journal" on TV along with lunch today. I've seen it before. These guys are quite supportive of the Blaser R93 rifle. So much so that if I was to lose all my current battery somehow, I'd get an R93 in .222 Rem., 9.3x62mm and .416 Rem. I think I'd also get one of those Ruger SxS 12 ga. guns. I'd also get a good traditional muzzleloader (actually one flinter volunteer musket type and one .54 rifle, percussion or flint) and a .22. I'd have to get a good carry pistol and that would probably be a .45. I hope it never comes to that!

Tuesday, February 11, 2003

I spent a good part of this afternoon reorganizing my shooting stuff. A big chore. Also, I need more ammo cans. I am labeling everything so that if something happens those that are responsible for cleaning up after me can sort it out with minimal hassle. Not writing those labels either (that WOULD be counterproductive). I am using a little P-Touch labeler to write out all the labels including for reloads.

Sunday, February 09, 2003

A friend on TC-L@yahoogroups.com just posted this link to the Association of Firearm and Toolmark Examiners which includes a link to the Headstamp Index. This could be VERY useful for some of us.

Saturday, February 08, 2003

What have I learned at from the internet? Well, let's see:

1. Double rifles require repair every 300-500 rounds. I never knew this. Having never owned a double rifle (but several double shotguns) and only read about them, I thought that they only needed repair when a spring broke or some such thing. I would never imagine that they are constructed such that they needed to be refit every 500 rounds or so. Now I have heard of double shotguns "shooting loose" but these were cheap guns and it hasn't happened even to my old Springfield/Stevens 20 and 16 ga. guns much less to the Parker Brothers or Ithacas.

2. So many people are incapable of expressing a complete sentence or properly using capitalization and punctuation! Sentences that run on, seemingly without end, are nearly unintelligible. These same sorts of people use obscenities as if they have the same impact in the written word as they do when uttered with the appropriate vocalizations. Simply amazing.

3. There are lots of people out there that know much more than I do about a lot of things. Ok, I didn't learn this, but the subject did receive some reinforcement.

4. There are lots of people out there that know much less than I do about nearly everything. I suppose that Jay Leno's "Jaywalking" segment didn't actually teach me this. However, with proper reinforcement, I am trainable.

5. There are so many people worldwide who hunt, who own firearms, who are intelligent. I did not expect to find so many who have overcome some really intimidating regulatory limitations to manage to get out and hunt. These people really impress me. Also, they are often technically savvy and well spoken, at least with the written word, in a language other than their native language (English). How many Americans can say the same. I know that I can no longer carry on a conversation in Korean or Mandarin.

6. There seem to be lots of people going to Africa to hunt. A corollary to this is that hunting in Africa is much more a business than here in the states. That is, guiding and paying to shoot animals is much more reduced to a system than it is here with all our public lands. I wonder how long our hunting patterns will last given that hunters as a group are aging and land use is becoming more regulated.

Ok, so that is not a great number of things. At least those are all that I come to mind as I write this. I do have other shooting concerns...

One of those is finally getting all my Contender barrels zeroed and the loads for them finalized. I get new barrels but don't get them zeroed or load development done. Among the tasks I have in this area:

1. Zero the .22 Match barrel with Winchester Power Points.
2. Zero the .22 Hornet and work up a load with Lil'Gun and Hornady's 35 gr. V-Max.
3. Zero the .218 Bee and work up a load with Lil'Gun and Hornady's 35 gr. V-Max.
4. Zero the .223 with the 63 gr. Sierra bullet load.
5. Zero the new .25-35 barrel with the factory 117 gr. RN load.
6. Check out the 7-30 Waters with the lead bullet/SR 4759 load.
7. Find a load for and zero the .41 Remington Magnum barrel.
8. Re-scope and zero the .38-55 barrel with the Barnes Original bullet and LBT bullet loads.
9. Zero the .38-55 Williams Foolproof Receiver Sight with the 249 gr. Leadheads PB bullet load.

I have other things that are on my "to do" list as well:

1. Help my son-in-law reduce the coyote population on his dad's farm.
2. Ditto for the groundhogs.
3. Ditto for coyotes on my mother's place.
4. Spring turkey hunting.
5. Get ready for the season's fly fishing.
6. Finish my office so that I can work in peace.
7. Finish cleaning my basement loading area so that I can be more efficient.
8. Redo the fence along the road at my mother's and repost the property boundary.
9. Plant bois d'arc along one fence line at my mother's.
10. Set up a dozen arrows for my hunting bow and practice.

Friday, February 07, 2003

Yesterday, I received a Bullberry, 16½", blued, bull, .41 Remington Magnum barrel from Mike Wittmer of Sanford, FL. This is really and outstanding barrel! Very well made (as is most of Bullberry's product) and finished and Mike took very good care of it as well. I've got it mounted already (so I can zero it if the weather ever gets good enough) with a Rynite 14" forearm (which works with the spacing Fred Smith of Bullberry uses for his hanger system) and carbine stock. For a sight I am using a Simmons 4X National Turkey Federation, turkey scope on a Weaver mount with Millet Angle-lok rings. Of course, the Rynite forearm for the 14" barrels does not have provision for a sling swivel so I've installed a .800-.850" Uncle Mikes barrel band (remember that the Contender barrel measures .812-.815") and this looks good and is working really well.

I will say that I have not cared much for this scope so far but it sure looks cute on this set-up. I'm not really thrilled with the Millet rings either but they were on hand so...

The whole deal is compact and should give another 400-500 fps to the 170-180 grain bullets over the 10mm Auto in the 14" with Choate extender. However, I am most interested in using a 250-275 gr. LBT design cast GC bullet in this cartridge with this barrel. Both Beartooth Bullets and Cast Performance offer bullets of this type in the required diameters.

Monday, February 03, 2003

I just received a barrel I bought from Ron Sable of RJ's Guns . A .25-35 Winchester, 21", blue, standard taper, it is everything that Ron said it was (as usual). Ron seems to be a great guy and has fair prices and some difficult to find things. He will also take the time to help if your ignorant. Take it from me, I know from personal experience.