Monday, April 09, 2012

Rockin' range day

Did you ever have one of those range days when everything went right? For me at least, usually something always twists the day--a needed magazine or bag of ammo gets left behind, a new gun out for evaluation turns out to suck, or a trusted old one funks out.

Well today, it was a great day as Proud Hillbilly and I hit the range.

I started out with the M60 again as I'd just figured out after the last session out with it that the front sight on these new barrels are adjustable for windage and elevation. (This makes it easy to pre-zero all of your spare barrels before the big fire-fight)A few adjustments both ways and it was dead-on at 100 yards. Proud Hillbilly sent some rounds downrange with it too, and it took several minutes for her to quit grinning. It's quite the fun shooter.
Next shooter on the line was the Norwegian (ex-German) K-98 Mauser that I'd bought a short time ago (discussed here.) I hadn't managed to get it out until today, and frankly, I wasn't expecting much as so many surplus bolt rifles just do well to hit the target itself and typically require a good deal of hold-over, hold-under, or "Kentucky windage" to put your shots where you want them. That being my experience, I'd have been ok with anything even close to the 8" target pasters placed on the 100-yard target, but Sha-zaam! The first round and every round following landed smack on the paster from the battle-sight setting! I'll add also that the trigger breaks light and smooth, and the sight picture is superb due to the Norwegians notching the rear sight out. Hell--come the revolution, I may just be grabbing this one off the rack or handing it out to someone I trust, because it's performance is right in the ballpark with my '03 Springfields and a couple of other select fighting bolt rifles.I'm in mad love with this one and I'll be taking it out to the range again real soon.

Then it was mouse rifle time. I'd planned on bringing the AR-15 out again and on impulse as I was heading out, I grabbed the Mini-14, too. This was a neat opportunity to shoot them both side-by-side.Best part about this range is you can shoot on the move, and use trees on the range for barricades. So I set up a course that involved taking cover behind various trees, shooting around right and left side of the trees, then running to the next tree to repeat, followed by some kneeling and crash-prone position shooting. I managed to put every round on target with both rifles and while the 15-round group shot with the iron-sighted Mini was actually a bit smaller, the AR with Aimpoint M3 Optics was much faster. And when it comes down to real-life shooting on the move at targets that will probably be shooting back, I'll take the enhanced speed over a slightly more precise shot placement, thank you very much. That being said, I'll take either of these in a real shooting situation. Both are accurate and reliable enough to get the job done and I'm secure enough in my shooter manhood that I can be seen in public with a stock Mini-14. (Hey, at least it's a GB.)
We wrapped up the day with some pistol shooting. I loaned Proud Hillbilly a Glock 19 and a Glock 23 so she could decide which one she likes best (And yes, your opinions are welcome.) and I brought out the Smith and Wesson Model 58 .41 Magnum and some new loads I put together for it that put 15.0 grains of AA#9 behind a 215gr lead semi-wadcutter.As you can see from this video clip, accuracy was good from 25 yards, and the plates went down with quite a bit of authority.
My thoughts on the big N-frame and this new load?

Then it was off to lunch and a few good beers, the perfect way to wind down an afternoon after three hours on the firing line before going home to Murphy. And Murphy was such a good dog while I was gone; he hardly got into anything. So that earned him a walk this evening. And now the sun is down and it's time to grill a steak and clean guns.

If you want to know more, go to Proud Hillbilly's blog and read her version.


  1. Nothing wrong with being seen with a Mini-14, especially the stock models.

    I'm jealous that our range allows moving and shooting. I might have to wander up that way and try it.

  2. And the S&W 58 was easier on the hands than my little Airlite. With a nice satisfying "Bang!" I so like the "Bang!" part...

  3. Andy, you're definitely welcome here any time.

  4. six out of six on the plates...

  5. Now THAT is a good day :)

    I hit my local range this weekend, only to find that the rifle portion is closed to anything .30 or higher, while they try to do some berm improvements required by the City. Of course, the hold up is getting the permits from the same City Planning and Development folks.... so who knows how long it will be tied up in red tape.

    Gotta find another range.

  6. Anonymous8:19 PM

    I have a Glock model 22 that I love.

  7. I'm jealous! I want one of each.
    And, good shootin.

  8. Sounds like a fantastic day and nice looking hardware to boot! How close is the range to homebase?

  9. @ Keads: 15 minutes. Nice and close.
    @ Flier: Thanks!
    @ Rick: They are good shooters, aren't they?
    @ Paladin: That sucks. We lost a local rifle range here without notice due to unsupervised yahoos shooting over the berms, so I feel ya.
    @ drjim: Thanks!
    @ PH: Those cartridges take almost the same amount and type of powder as your M1 carbine cartridges.
    @ Andy: Get down here, then!

  10. Sounds like a great day all around! One question though, how can you ever have a bad day at the range with an M60 along?!