Tuesday, October 13, 2020


Get a haircut, hippy

We'd been planning a shoot for some time but things kept getting in the way, broken femurs, a boy graduating Basic, climate change, a deadly Chinese plague, you name it, all conspired to keep us off the range. Until today.

RHT drove over from the DFW connurb and we headed off to J's place to try out some weaponry. All well and good, and then disaster! My rig sank into the sand of an ancient seabed on the way to our objective and had to be pulled out by a handy tractor. Obstacle overcome, we set up at 200 yards and shot.

J knows how to shoot

I went first with an Aero Precision AR10 firing 168 grain .308. Would it work and more to the point, would I remember how to shoot? 

Watch out kids, don't bet the monkey, but I did, just, and ended up with a decent group in the 10 ring, which should've been in the X. RHT followed up with a Hogue stocked .308 Howa and a Redfield scoped M1A. They shot well, very well.

Good Call

Now, all of the above were great to shoot and made considerably more accurate by RHT and J's hand loads. I don't reload or cast bullets, unlike these two very friendly competition shooters, and was struck by the difference. Wow. Speaking of which, RHT and J's Howas were X-Ring on the money for a ridiculously low price. I want one.

Do Not Scorn This

Then, after a quick remedial bout with .45s it was time for lunch at Los Verdes, which always serves excellent Mexican food. Did we discuss the satanic evil of Marxism, the wickedness of banksters and the importance of wine? Possibly. You be the judge.

Back at the range it was time for RHT to roll out an 1872 Remington .50-70 and an 1873 Trapdoor Springfield .45-70. For me, this was the high point of the shoot. There's something about firing these now exotic and antique firearms which appeals. Is it the history of the thing, their provenance, or the nature of the guns themselves? There they are, muskets turned into rifles.

Regardless, the Remington wasn't too keen to get on paper but the Springfield noisily got on a gong, in the appx. 10 ring in my hands and in J's it was hitting the bull. With iron sights. At 200 yards. All 1873 of it. We were amazed. This old rifle was outshooting... ahem. What a lot of fun.

RHT on his awesome M1A

We finished off with some AR action, J stealing the show with a series of X-Ring excellence. 3 shots, left to right touching on the X. A testament to Geissele, the barrel, Nightforce optics, the loads and the shooter himself. Seriously, a lot of people would've been pleased with that group at 50 yards with a .17 HMR. Good shooting.

Random LSP guns

And that was that. Huge enjoyment out in the clean air and big skies of Texas. And about time that this shooter actually got out and shot. Big thanks to RHT for getting the wheels rolling and thanks too to J for such warm hospitality, and a great range which goes out to 1000 yards.


Hmmm, can I shoot that far? Good question, perhaps it's time to learn. We'll see about that and calling the shot as this mission progresses.

In the meanwhile, thanks guys for a great day out, what a perfect result.

Shoot straight,



drjim said...

Oldest rifle I've ever fired was a Moisin-Nagant that my son's cousin brought with us to the range. It was an acceptable rifle in my hands, and I had no trouble doing 8-ring or better at 100yds with it.

But to fire some of the famed rifles you did would be quite a thrill!

Glad you all had such a wonderful time.

Jim said...

Shooting the old stuff can be fun. When it comes to military one-shooters, I've also fired rolling blocks and trapdoors. One day at a shoot I was attending a gentleman down from Canada broke out a Martini-Henry and asked if I'd like to try it. "Twist my arm," said I. It was interesting. One of the regulars at the range owns and enjoys shooting antique rifles(black powder loads of course) and will occasionally allow me to try a couple rounds. It's always fun to fire a model that hasn't been manufactured in over a century.

Well Seasoned Fool said...

My first rifle, bought with my own money, was a military surplus Kraig-Jorgensen. Can't remember the year of manufacture but production for the US Military was stopped in 1901.

I gave it to a cousin who put meat on the table with it for decades until his passing. One of his grandsons has it now and still hunts with it. (Must be genetic-the whole clan is cheap!)

Envy your range trip. My eyes aren't sharp enough now for serious shooting.

RHT447 said...

More of the story.

Good friends, good times. Truly a splendid day.

First, the minor disaster is on me as lead navigator. Last time at J’s, I over shot the entry to his property. Eager to not repeat that error, this time I turned too soon onto the neighbor’s property, LSP dutifully in trail. Realizing my error, we attempted to execute a 180 when the sand swallowed one of LSP’s rear tires. Brief comedy ensued.

My phone goes off, it’s J.

“You guys on your way yet?”

“Um, yeah, mostly” (like mostly peaceful)

In five minutes J arrives in his pickup, we asses the situation, he leaves and in ten minutes is back with his tractor. We chain up to LSP’s rig and problem solved. For the rest of the day I do not utter the words “follow me”.

A minor note—the Remington rolling block is chambered .43 Spanish. Do not fault LSP’s reporting. J and I have shot together for a long time and listening to us jabber technical jargon I’m sure was like trying to drink from a fire hose. LSP is a humble man. He admitted to being a bit rusty, but that rust fell right off. Do not under estimate him. He knows which end of the rifle to point at the demons.

That rifle/cartridge combo is not known for accuracy. I’ve owned it for about a decade, but this was the first time shooting it. Finally got some ammo loaded with some store bought (on line) cast bullets. More investigation needed if and when the Inspiration strikes me.

The rounds pictured are one of my 45-70 handloads and a fired 308. Ever conscious of the need to recycle, I cast those bullets from used tire weights. And they just sing in the Trapdoor (with LSP in the photo). I bought that rifle in 1973 at a gun shop in El Cerrito, CA. (Had to stop and think, no, I owned that before I enlisted).

After a morning of rescue missions and blasting away, lunch was—perfect. Wonderful food, fresh made flavor that is only diminished by any condiments.

We WILL do this again.

Jim said...

I like the Krag. They have a really smooth slick action and that .30-40 will get the job done. Now a little rhyme for your(and perhaps LL's) entertainment.

In the days of dopey dreams—happy, peaceful Philippines,
When the bolomen were busy all night long.
When ladrones would steal and lie, and Americanos die,
Then you heard the soldiers sing this evening song:
Damn, damn, damn the insurrectos!
Cross-eyed kakiac ladrones!
Underneath the starry flag, civilize 'em with a Krag,
And return us to our own beloved homes.

Kid said...

Obvious good times. I haven't been in a while, looking to end that streak.

LSP said...

Never shot a Mosin, drjim, but weren't they absurdly inexpensive? I think some bought them as EOTW rifles...

But yes, BIG fun shooting those historic guns!

Well Seasoned Fool said...

The Krag was offered in more calibers in different countries. At the outbreak of WWII, it was the Danish Army's issued rifle in 8x58mm.

In other services it was chambered in 6.5x55S, maybe more.

LSP said...

Jim, I've rarely had the opportunity to shoot them but always enjoy it when I do. I can see why people get hooked on it.

And yes to the Krag, what a great action. Nice little rhyme.

LSP said...

Good to hear that Krag's still doing its thing, WSF. And for sure, what a good day out. Been a while, but now I'm addicted to shooting again, right when you can't buy ammo. Grrrr.

LSP said...

RHT, a BIG THANK YOU for setting up a great shoot. The morning safari only added to the adventure, and the trapdoor was a blast. I was surprised when I hit that gong. Nice.

Verdes is pretty tasty, eh? Good call on J's part and nice to run into a couple of church people. George is an interesting guy, he was an artillery Captain in Vietnam and went on to run an oil & gas consultancy, still does.

Lunch aside, what a pleasure to shoot with you and J. We were in it for the fun of the thing and that's exactly what happened. A repeat performance is definitely in order!

So thanks again. Nice one.

PS. Thx for the SMLE -- I now have... another Lee project. But not a hard one, just needs a new King Screw, bushing and a trigger guard screw. Forestock might work as is, butt needs a recoil pad/plate. Let's see how that goes.

PPS. Curious to try out the 1000 yard mark...

LSP said...

Kid, it'd been AGES since I'd shot, but it felt good to get out again. Of course the company helped along with the neat variety of guns/optics/loads. Maybe I should get into handloading, probably a good thing to do if you're serious about the sport. You know, tune that round to the gun for best performance. WEel, we'll see.

Old NFO said...

I like the long range shoots, those are 'fun', but you have to start short and work out. And y'all must be getting soft, I saw that pillow in the chair! ;-)

drjim said...

Yep, they were "$50 Rifles" not that long ago. I shot it about ten years ago, and I think he said he'd paid about $75 for it. I just checked Gun Broker, and decent shooters seem to be around $250~$300. Specific models, in excellent condition, are well upwards of $1500.

Hardly a junky old "truck gun" like they used to be considered.....

But then I missed out on the arsenal-rebuilt $100 M1 Carbines, too.....

LSP said...

Ha! NFO, the pillow belonged to RHT but I wasn't complaining... btw, really liked your last shooting/attitude post.

These guys were the exact opposite of crew you write about -- just a lot of fun to shoot with, which at my level is exactly what it's all about. And teaching to boot, which is always good.

Old NFO said...

Thanks, RHT is a regular commenter over at my place, and you show up occasionally!

LSP said...

I try, NFO, but fall behind in the commentariat... invited to a 1000 yard shoot tomorrow morning. It'll be a teaching moment for me. Hmmmm. Let's see if I get on target!

RHT447 said...

Bully! All long range shooters know that early morning is best. Crisp, still air before the sun warms and mirage begins to bend the light, making your target dance across the reticle. Hammer that steel plate. Orange plate bad, Orange Man Good. And by all means, as you said above, call the shot.