May Rifle Match results…

This month I elected to fire the President’s Match using my AR-15A4.

The match requires than it be fired with an iron sighted rifle. So, I would use the Matech BUIS with the Aimpoint red dot sight turned off.

Slow fire prone. My first shot was an “X”. My last was that damned “5”! A good 10-15 points off of where I should be.

Rapid fire prone. Again, begin with “10”s and finish one out of the neighborhood way up in the “6” ring!

Standing slow fire. A nice round group, but a little high. Should have been circling the “9” ring. Then I yank one low in the 8-ring. Pissed, I shanked the last one even further south for a “6”.

258-2X out of a possible 300-30X. Not good.

The Combat Rifle Match.

I am using my AR-15A4 in the Modern Military / NATO class. Fold down the Matech BUIS and turn on the Aimpoint red dot sight.

I am happy with the 46-4v out of a possible 50-10v in the rapid fire prone.

A mediocre 33-0v in the kneeling rapid fire.

But I brought my score up with a 41-5v in the Offhand Snap stage.

Overall, a 120-v is not a bad score.

Finishing the day with the Swiss Schützenfest. I had already qualified with my 1942 Karabiner 31.

I was tired so I elected to only shoot the Feldschiessen and forgo the Einzelwettschiessen and the Meisterschaft.

The Feldschiessen starts out in slow fire and speeds up as it progresses. The last string of fire is 6 rounds in 50 seconds. I got loose and put three out of the black.

A minimum of 57 points is needed for a medal. A Karte is awarded for scoring 55 points…. unless the shooter is a senior. And this year I am. My score of 54 points was just enough for a Karte. When I turn 68, I will only need to post a score of 53 points!

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Swiss GP11 Alternative…

Everyone knows that genuine 7.5x55mm GP11 out of Switzerland is becoming an endangered species. Phenomenal ammunition without a doubt. Compared to what other militaries issue to their troops, this stuff is match grade! But with the Stgw 57 rifle a thing of the past and the MG 51 machinegun being phased out of the Swiss Army, continued production is a subject of conjecture.

I am getting down to the bottom of the barrel in regard to my personal supply.

The Portuguese FNM ammunition used to be plentiful, inexpensive and reloadable. Yes, it was somewhat underpowered, but its Boxer primed brass makes it a valuable commodity. And I have a bunch of it.

A couple of years ago, there was a sudden surge of Prvi Partizan 7.5x55mm that quickly dried up. Very good ammunition, it is almost as accurate as GP11 in my K31. And it too is reloadable.

Knowing that factory ammunition for my K31 in the future is going to be problematic, developing a suitable reload became a priority. I do have all the components on hand to keep me viable in the local Swiss Schützenfest. While Reloder 7 is the preferred choice for gunpowder, my ample supply of IMR-4895 has done quite well during load testing. I have several different .30 caliber bullets on hand. but the Sierra MatchKing took the crown during testing. Recently, in my work travels, I happened upon a gun store that was having a liquidation sale. Rummaging in some overlooked boxes in a corner, I hit the mother lode. Over a dozen bags of PRVI Partizan factory brass! The retiring shop owner let me have it all for a song.

Well, with this much thought and effort involved there is no way I can show up on the firing line with my handloaded ammo in a sandwich bag. When the last of my factory ammunition has been expended, I will make sure that the competitor to my side sees this. A personal confidence enhancer, sure. Some mild psychological warfare against my fellow competitor, we’ll see.

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May PPC match results…

Today was the Police Pistol Combat match for May. Hosted by the Delaware Law Enforcement Marksmanship Association, it is open to civilians as well as police.

I always fire three relays in my quest for a competitive high season average. My first relay was a dismal 455-16X out of a possible 480-48X. Discouraged, I willed myself to focus only on my trigger squeeze. Using all the time allotted, I concentrated on producing 48 precision presses of the trigger. After the relay concluded, I was relieved to tally up a score of 463-21X! OK, I feel vindicated. The low 460’s is where I should be this early in the season. This score would erase one of my lesser scores from April.

One more relay to fire today. The blue paster tape on the target was from a previous relay.

Stage A:

One string of 6rds from the holster standing strong hand only in 8 seconds at 3yds. All “X”s.

This is followed by 12rds from the holster with 2 hands standing in 20 seconds at 7yds. All “X”s and three “10”s for a stage total of 180-15X.

Stage B:

Twelve rounds at 15 yards garnered nothing but 10’s and X’s!

The left side of the barricade string of fire at 25 yards has always been my weak spot. Six rounds kneeling from the right side of the barricade followed by six more left-handed standing from the left side. The string is finished with six rounds standing from the right side. I knew I jerked one shot during the left-hand portion of the stage. When the line was declared safe, we went downrange to score each other’s targets. There it was. A hole outside of the group in the 7-ring at 3 o’clock.

Because of this sloppy shot, my resultant stage total was 288-13X.

The total aggregate for the last relay was a 468-28X. Should’ve been a 471! This year my high average started out at a low 452.33 points @ 94.23%. Today’s two good scores brings my high three average up ten full points to 462.33 @ 96.31%.

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CMP Eastern Games. Recap…

This was my tenth year of competing in the Eastern Games at Camp Butner, NC. By the end of the first match of the first time I attended, I knew I would be coming back. Since then, I have learned a few things. After that first year, I have stayed exclusively at the Best Western hotel.

My first foray in Butner was at a nearby motel. Bad choice. My standing rule now is NO MOTELS! If you can park in front of the room door… pass!

There are numerous places to eat in and around the Butner/Creedmoor area. Rino’s Italian grill makes a decent pepperoni cheese steak.

China Town’s sesame chicken was good. At least the local Waffle House knows how to make a lightly crispy waffle as opposed to most of the rest of WH franchise.

My favorite quiet lunchtime getaway is the Lakeside Grill at the Holt Reservoir.

During the Eastern Games they have a barbeque for all the competitors. There was so much that they sent me back to my hotel room with leftovers!

Even if you know for sure that you are not going to win any awards, do not miss the awards presentation. They hold a free raffle at the end. Several years ago, I got the grand prize of a new M1 Garand wood stock set worth $400! This year there was a lot of ammunition given out including bandoleers of .30 Carbine ammo. The grand prize was a .50 caliber can of .30-06 ammunition!

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CMP Eastern Games, Day Three…

My fourth and last rifle match at the Games would be fired with my 1942 Remington M1903A3.

Stage One: Slow fire prone

I started out well until I mashed the trigger, and my fifth shot went low into the 6-ring. Two “7”s helped bring more score down to a dismal 87-1X.

Stage Two: Rapid fire prone

A fine group, but too much sling tension pushed it way low. The resultant 78-0X put me out of contention.

Stage Three: Offhand

Even if I fired all “10”s, it was over. But I sallied forth with a decent: for me, offhand score of 82-1X.

Total score 247-2X.

And to top it off, I just now realized as I write this that the monitor was set to .223 caliber instead of .30 caliber!

OK. The rifles are done. The only thing left was the Carbine Match.

My 1943 Underwood M1 Carbine has medaled before.

Now the M1 Carbine is difficult to shoot competitively. It is a featherweight, firing basically a pistol cartridge. Combat effective? Yes. Competition grade? Meh. Fun? Oh yeah!

Stage One: Slow fire prone

I got the ball rolling with a damn “6”! But all the rest were “9”s or better. I was happy with the 91-2X.

Stage Two: Rapid fire prone. Sling tension was inconsistent, and I strung my shots vertically. But with the M1 Carbine, 82-0X was OK.

Stage Three: Rapid fire sitting. I hate the sitting position. I almost opted to shoot this stage kneeling which is an authorized alternative. But with the wind gusting like mad, I kept my butt on the ground. With only a single “7” to mar a centered group, an 86-0X meant I was in the running for a Silver medal.

Stage Four: Offhand

Oh boy, here we go. The wind was kicking and was going to make life miserable.

I began doing fair, with wind pushing me around. Just over halfway through, I jerked the trigger and sent one low to just make the 5-ring. Two shots later, I redeemed it with a “10”.

Then my brain spoke up.

Trying to ignore myself and the wind, I jerked the trigger yet again! Down low again, it was as Bob Uecker would say… “just a bit outside.” A great big ugly zero. So much for Silver. One round left to fire.

An “8”. A so-so stage total of 68-0X.

But this is the Carbine match where the cutoff is lower. And a match score of 327-2X means just making the Bronze.

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CMP Eastern Games, Day Two…

Rain was in the day’s forecast with possible lightning in the afternoon.

I opted to fire AR-15A2 for two reasons. First, it has no wood to swell. Second, it won’t blow water in my face as it cycles.

Slow fire prone. I yanked that sixth shot just enough to score an “8”… dammit! But a 96-2X is a good start.

Rapid fire prone. I was not keeping consistent sling tension, stringing my shots vertically. That “7” hurt. A 90-1X was barely OK.

Offhand. I would need a score of about 85 points to do any good. Halfway into it I was hitting “7”s and “9”s. I would need the remaining shots to be all “8”s or better.

Remember how I previously said keeping a running score was a bad idea?

Well, that was about to come to fruition. With an almighty yank, I mashed the trigger. My muzzle nosedived as I tripped the sear. I felt it. My scorer saw it and groaned loudly. I looked over at the monitor. There it was, laughing at me from way outside of the “5” ring at 7 o’clock. My death knell, a big fat zero!

That was it. I was done. Even if I finished with all “10”s, I was out of contention. But riflemen never quit. Four rounds remained for personal practice.

Total for the day was a miserable 258-3X.

One day of competition still yet remained. Tomorrow was the Springfield rifle match and the M1 Carbine match.

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CMP Eastern Games, Day One…

To start the Games off I elected to shoot my home-built AR-15A2 for the first match.

Stage One: Slow fire prone.

Ten rounds in ten minutes from the prone position.

I dropped a point right off the bat with a “9” at 3 o’clock. I followed that up with four “10”s and an “X”. Then I shanked one high into the 8-ring. Pissed off, I bore down and fired an “X”, a “9” and finished with an almost perfect “X”. I was happy with a 96-3X out of a possible 100-10X.

Stage Two: Rapid fire prone.

Ten rounds in 80 seconds with a reload from the prone position.

A pair of “9”s and a pair of “8”s brought my stage score down to 94-1X.

Stage Three: Slow fire offhand.

Ten rounds in ten minutes from the standing unsupported position.

This is definitely my Achilles heel. While my goal in the prone stages is to keep them all in the black, here it is to shoots “8”s or better. Three “7”s and a damned “6” hurt. But not bad enough. An 81-0X was good enough.

My total tally of 271-4X was enough to win a Bronze medal.

For the second match of the day, I chose to fire my 1943 M1 Garand.

Stage One: Slow fire prone.

I started off right away by scoring a “9”. Then another and another. Eight “9”s in a row. Then I finally scored a “10”. One shot to go. Yup, I yanked the final shot deep left for an “8”, negating the previous “10” for a score of 90-0X.

Stage Two: Rapid fire prone.

Four “9”s and a pair of “8”s brought my stage score down to 92-1X. But I did finish in style with an “X”.

Stage Three: Slow fire offhand.

All through the stage I was hitting “10”s, “9”s and “8”s. Stupidly, I was tracking my score in my head. Don’t do that! I yanked my last shot and recorded a “7”. The resultant 87-0X was just good enough.

My match total of 269-1X was a Bronze medal score.

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Swiss alternatives…

With the supply of GP11 ammunition out of Switzerland dwindling, and the price for what can be had skyrocketing, alternatives are paramount. I have just enough GP11 to get me and my K31 through the rest of the 2023 Schützenfest season.

I wanted to have viable loads using at least two different bullets just in case. Today’s testing came up with a pair of contenders worth further experimentation.

The Swiss GP11 utilizes a 174gr. FMJBT bullet.

My testing revolved around two available bullets. The famous Sierra MatchKing 168gr. HPBT on the left and the newer Lehigh Defense 150gr. FMJBT on the right.

The weather on the range was hot and very humid. Not the best testing conditions but you take what you can get.

The results of the Lehigh Defense bullet is promising.

But the Sierra MatchKing bullet was the winner. Yeah, I called that “3” out at 2 o’clock. Further tweaking will ensue, but I am happy to have a solid baseline.

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2023 DLEMA Season opener…

It was chilly on day one of the new season. I fired three relays as usual. My first was a mediocre 450-20X out of a possible 480-48X. My second foray was barely better with a 451-22X.

My best run should have been better.

The two 10’s at the 7-yard line was from me rushing against the clock. The Range Officer even commented to me that I had 8 seconds left when I ran my pistol dry! A 180-16X out of a maximum of 180-18X was a good start.

Stage “A”

Twelve rounds at 15 yards garnered nothing but 10’s and X’s! The barricade string of fire at 25 yards has always been my Achilles Heel. Six rounds kneeling from the right side of the barricade followed by six more left-handed standing from the left side. The string is finished with six rounds standing from the right side. I knew I jerked one round, incredibly so. When the line was cleared, we trod downrange to score each other’s targets. There it was. A hole outside of the 7-ring at 5 o’clock.

A great big zero!

Because of this horrific shot, my resultant total was 456-23X. This year my high average starts out at a low 452.33 points @ 94.23%. I will need to bring my average up 14 points to match this past year’s score.

Stage “B”

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2022 Season Results…

Yesterday was the first day of the 2023 Delaware Law Enforcement Marksmanship Association competitive season.

And as is customary, the first order of business is to present the awards from the previous year. I have now accomplished a championship hat trick!

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