Saturday, March 31, 2012

More on the Dutch Shooting Sports Proposed Ban

This proposed ban will not only ban action rifle, IPSC, and IDPA type shooting, it will also ban Steel Challenge.

When you sign the petition, you enter your email, and then you will be sent a confirmation email explaining how to confirm your signature. This way they know you are who you say you are, and that your signature is valid. You MUST confirm your signature, or it does not go on the petition.

Here's the email they will send you:

Dear (Your Name),
The website is the petition "Dynamic disciplines must remain" signed from e-mail address on Sat 31 Mar 2012 9:03:03 p.m. named (Your name). Do you disagree, please ignore this email.
You can confirm your signature by clicking on this sentence. Then you arrive on a web page where you press the [confirm] can click. If you do, you can then see your signature under the petition back to the present day, provided you confirm chose a publicly visible signature. You can also decide later your name visible or invisible by again from this e-mail to that page and make your choice.
To confirm your signature you may also copy this link to a window with an internet address line: email is confidential because only (your name) with address (your email) can confirm the signing. Please send this message through and make it public with a unique link only for you. Do you share this email with others, than only the last data entered.
Tip: if you want to invite people to also sign? Then you can refer to them or standard mail request after you have confirmed through the above link. If you send yourself an invitation, then you can e-mail forwarding to others.
Note: many people find themselves months or years later as a signatory of a petition as they search with their names do. If you do not want future employers, clients or other acquaintances you can see that a certain petition supports, please check that you want to sign invisible. If you do this after your name has been visible a few weeks then it takes again a few weeks before the search engines notice this and your name to a petition does not show up in search.


Here's a Google translation of the below petition. It's a rough translation, but you can get a pretty good idea of what it says.  

"We believe that the Minister is not sufficiently accurate knowledge to such a decision to make." 

Even in translation, that's certainly tactful, but the meaning is loud and clear!

Although this looks like a working version of the petition, please go to the original petition website listed in the post below this one to actually sign the petition.

We, marksmen, members of the 714 rifle and 40000 + members KNSA note
Minister Opstelten that tomorrow or the day will send a message to the House in which he indicates that he intends the dynamic disciplines such as practiced by NPSA and APS ban.
This despite the position of the KNSA that they have no objection dynamic disciplines, if properly regulated as to the NPSA.
Lists over 1000 athletes wrongly punished!
and requests all marksmen to be united to sign so that our grievances can be heard.
We urge the Minister to reconsider his decisions Be it dialogue with us to find. We believe that the Minister is not sufficiently accurate knowledge to such a decision to make.

sign the petition Dynamic disciplines should continue.

We'll email you a link to your signature can confirm. Your information will not be disclosed to third parties and remain with the Foundation Read more about this in our privacy policy .


Help Save Action Shooting in Holland

I got this in an email from one of my shooting friends in Holland. The original email was written by Saul Kirsch. Some of you probably already know Saul. He's also the head of Double Alpha Academy, and he manufactures a lot of competition items, including some really nice holsters.

The petition mentioned in Saul's email is in Dutch, and I have already requested that an English translation be posted along with the petition, if possible. Although we are not necessarily Dutch constituents, if there is a big world wide response to the petition, that can't but help the cause to keep IPSC, and other action pistol disciplines from being outlawed.Give or friends in Holland a hand!

Saul's email:

Urgent - Your Action is Needed Now!

Dear fellow IPSC shooters and friends,

As many of you have heard already, IPSC shooting (in fact all Dynamic shooting disciplines) are about to be prohibited in the Netherlands!
This new law will be voted on in a matter of weeks, and if it passes – will mean the end of our sport in Holland, and who knows – this decision may well spread quickly across the EU.

As you can imagine, the NPSA (the Dutch IPSC organization) is mobilizing every possible resource to fight this unjust proposed law, but it is  a desperate battle. The odds are stacked against us.

We need your help!

There is a petition being signed (online) which will be submitted along with other material as we  try to make our case for our sport.
You can help by going online and signing this petition. The more signatures we have, the better.
Please also take a moment to forward this email to anyone you can think of who could generate more signatures, your shooting range, your club,  your federation, your local gunsmiths who may be able to send it on to their mailing list. Post it online on any website you have access to.
We want to show that IPSC is a serious sport, with thousands of participants worldwide.

Please take a minute to log onto this site:

Scroll down, where it says “Ik” –  you fill in  your name
- Where it says ”wonede te” you fill in your city and country.
- Tick the checkbox if  you want to allow your name to be shown on the list.
- Enter your email address
- And click the yellow box “ondertekenen” to sign the petition.

Many thanks for your participation in our fight.

Best Regards,
Saul Kirsch
General Manager
Double-Alpha Academy B.V.


Thursday, March 29, 2012

FFL License Update

A while back I posted about sending in my application for my Federal Firearms License (FFL). I Rounded up all the forms and filled them out, got my fingerprints recorded on the special form, got some passport photos, and sent it all in.

A few weeks later I got a call from the ATF, wanting to set up an appointment and an interview. A couple of days ago the ATF Rep. came to visit, and we spent about five hours thoroughly  going over all the laws and procedures for running my firearms business.

In the course of the conversation we were discussing manufacturing of firearms, and I have always wanted to make my own rimfire race gun frame, incorporating all the things I've learned over the years. Making one for myself is a fairly simple process, but if I decided to sell it and make a better one, it's a bit more complicated. However, it turns out that to apply for a FFL license that allows you all of the regular dealer things, and allows manufacturing too, is the same form. It took a little bit of paperwork, but we were able to withdraw my application for a type 01 FFL license and resubmit it as a type 07 license, and still use the original application.

I got a phone call today that the application is being sent for final approval with a recommendation to approve by the ATF Rep. It seems that the State Department has added in some additional fee or tax on firearms manufacturers of $2500, so I'm not likely to be manufacturing anything for a long time, but at least the paperwork is in place for the future.

The good news is that the ATF was great to deal with, everything was explained carefully and in detail, and although it was a long session, I think I picked up all the relevant info, and I now know how to find any info that I otherwise can't remember.

For next year's SHOT show I think I can sign up in every one of the attendee categories; Media, Dealer, wholesaler, retailer, manufacturer, and probably more. They don't have a category for "Ammo Waster" but I'd be a natural for that one too........


Friday, March 23, 2012

e-Postal Match Is Underway

The first e-Postal match of the season is well underway, and the first e-Postal match of the year usually has a very low number of entries. I hope this year's first match is not the same. The end of the first match is drawing near, only 8 days off. Only a few gun bloggers have mentioned the match, and I suspect most folks don't even know it's underway. All entries must be received by Midnight on Sunday, April 1st, and results will be posted within seven days, or less. 

If you are a blogger or run a Forum, we sure would appreciate it if you would mention the match and help spread the word.  These matches are a lot of fun, with each month's match being something creatively different, not the same old boring bullseye targets! For example, this month's target is to see how many shots you can put on target WITHOUT hitting any of the flies! I suspect it's harder than it looks.

Here's the link to the match rules, and here's the link to download the target.

Although these matches are just for fun, with no prizes based on how well you do, there will be some bottles of Mr. C's Super Sekrit Gun Oil given away by random drawing to the shooters entering the match.

So, read up on the rules, print out a stack of targets, and grab everything you've got that shoots and head to the range. It's not a bad time to invite other shooters, or even a new shooter, to join in on the fun.

After all, how can you not have fun shooting a target where the more you miss, the better you do?


Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Milling Machine Video

For those of you interested in this sort of thing, here's a short video of my EXCELLO CNC milling machine machining a mount for the OKO Red Dot sight to fit onto a Ruger 10-22 rifle.

This machine was considered state of the art in the early 80's. It's fun to watch as it moves back and forth and up and down making the parts!


Silver Legacy Financial Agreement Reached

The Silver Legacy hotel and casino in Reno, the site of this September's Gun Blogger Rendezvous,  has been struggling financially,  like most of the casinos out there. Part of this is due to the economy, and part of it is due to additional competition from tribal casinos.

On the first of March a note from their creditors for 142 million dollars was due, and the Silver Legacy's owners were not able to come up with the money to pay off the note. The casino owners and the creditors have been in negotiations trying to work out an agreement to restructure the debt and to allow the Silver Legacy to continue in business and avoid bankruptcy.

I just received an email from the Silver Legacy that an agreement has been reached, and the Silver Legacy will continue on, business as usual. This is great news for the Gun Blogger Rendezvous, as the Silver Legacy folks have always been great to work with, and I really didn't want to have to re-locate the Rendezvous to another facility.

Here's the Reno Gazette Journal article

See you all in Reno in September!


Thursday, March 15, 2012


Blogging will be a bit on the light side (yeah, I know, it already is!) as I'm totally buried in a major project with an absolute deadline only ten weeks away. I've totally lost the concept of day and night, and I work until I'm unable to continue, then get a few hours sleep, then back at it again. If all goes well I will have everything where it appears complete in the next week or so, so I will have some time for a lot of testing before the deadline.

I haven't been out shooting except for the match last Saturday in Ephrata. I don't even have any ammo loaded for this Sunday in Puyallup yet. Work sure does cut into range time. Sadly, this big project involves a ton of man hours, but very little compensation for the time. bleh................

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Ephrata Sportsman's First Monthly Steel Match

Every year for the last few years the Washington State Steel Challenge Championships has been held at the Ephrata Sportsmen's range in Ephrata, Washington. It has always been a "Once a year" event, run primarily by Patrick Kelley, the 3 Gun Speed Demon! There has not been any regularly scheduled steel matches the rest of the year.

That's now all changed. Cowboy Action Shooter Grant Galbreath has stepped up to the plate, and is now running once a month Steel Challenge matches in Ephrata. The ranges are big, and the steel is outstanding, being as it's from Mike Gibson and MGM targets. They use genuine AR500 armor plate steel, and they ring like a gong when you hit them. Being armor plate, they also won't end up all shot up, pock-marked, dangerous, and have to be replaced in a few years.

I had an all day long and extremely boring at times meeting on Friday that I absolutely had to attend, and I wasn't looking forward to it at all. However, when I found out that the Ephrata club was going to run their first monthly steel match the next day, and since Ephrata is only another hour or so's drive East, my outlook brightened up considerably! KeeWee had to work, so she couldn't go, which is just as well, as the meeting would have meant she would have to kill a full day in Ellensburg, with nothing to drive but our "Mini-Land-yacht.

I drove across Snoqualmie Pass to Ellensburg on Thursday afternoon, about a four hour drive. Getting to Ellensburg Thursday evening, I grabbed a quick dinner in a small local restaurant, then parked the RV behind the restaurant for the night. The battery ran down for the furnace, and it was a cold night, but I had two sleeping bags, so I didn't totally freeze.

The next morning I breakfasted at the same place, then drove a short distance to Central Washington University, where the meeting was being held. The meeting was about as I expected, and my presentation went fairly well, without any major "Fox Passes".

After the meeting, I drove on East, crossing the Columbia River at Vantage, and then onward to Ephrata. I met up with Grant and his wife Carlin in Ephrata, and we headed off to a nearby Mexican restaurant for an excellent meal and conversation. After dinner they dropped me off at the RV, parked in the Walmart Parking lot, where I spent Friday night. I kept the furnace either off, or set on low, so the battery lasted through the night, and Saturday morning was much more pleasant!

The club range is only a few minutes drive from the Walmart, so after some cold coffee from the Thermos, I headed over there for the day. In the club house they had both hot coffee and doughnuts! Perfect! I signed in and had a while to sit around and visit with some of the other shooters. Some I had met before, but there were also a lot of new faces. After a little more coffee and another doughnut (yum) we had a brief shooters meeting, and then got down to the shooting part of the match. We squadded up into groups, and headed to our first stage. Our squad was a great bunch, with a mix of experienced and new steel shooters, but everyone in the squad was a decent shooter. Everyone helped out with scoring, running the timer, and so forth, and we had a great time.

The match consisted of five regulation Steel Challenge stages, and even though two stages had to share one bay, everything moved smoothly. In no time, it seemed, the match was over! DANG! The weather even cooperated a bit, and we didn't see any rain, and the wind only came up for a short while. It still wasn't all that warm, but for the time of year, the weather was certainly decent.

After the match we headed back to the clubhouse, where Chili dogs were waiting for us. To me, perhaps the biggest and best part of shooting is not the shooting, but the shooters themselves. Getting the chance to hang out, visit, tell stories, and socialize with the other shooters is what makes it all fun. Unfortunately, I had a long drive, a questionable mountain pass, and a ferry boat ride between me and Castle Completely, so after farewells all around, I fired up the Mini-Land-Yacht and headed West. Fortunately the pass wasn't too congested and it wasn't snowing, so the trip, though tiring, went smoothly. It was good to be home and to sleep in a regular bed, for sure!

Congratulations to Grant and the gang at the Ephrata Sportsmen's Club for running a first class match! It's a long haul for me to get to their matches, and the fuel cost alone makes it rather expensive. Even so, it's well worth the trip. If  you live anywhere in Central or Eastern Washington and have wanted to give steel shooting a try, then this is a match worth attending. Their steel matches are on the 2nd. Saturday of every month, with sign-up at 8am, shooter's meeting at 9am, and shooting right after the meeting.

Eastern Washington is lucky that on the 1st. Saturday of the month the Yakima Rifle & Pistol Association also puts on a Steel Challenge match at Moxee, which is just a few miles East of Yakima. Both of these clubs are running true Steel Challenge" stages, so these matches are both highly recommended.

Maybe we'll see you there!


Wednesday, March 07, 2012

Delta Air Miles Needed - HELP!

I thought I had everything under control for being able to pay for the upcoming trip in May to Holland to shoot in the European Steel Challenge Championships. Having recently run  up a lot of medical and hospital bills, financially things are really tight, but according to Delta, the round trip flight from Seattle to Amsterdam can be paid using my frequent flier miles. The chart shows 30,000 flier miles each way, for a total of 60,000 miles needed. I've got just about 65,000 miles, so I should be good to go, right? Nope, they have higher requirements depending on when you want to fly, and there are no flights even close to the right dates at that rate. In fact, it will take 125,000 flyer miles and $61.00 to get the ticket. That leaves me short by about 60,00 flyer miles to get the ticket. They do give you the option of using your flyer miles as far as they go, and paying cash for the balance, but if I figured that right, that's still another $600 bucks.

If any of you have any Delta Flyer miles you don't need, I sure could use the help coming up with enough to cover the ticket. Last year was sponsoring a shooting team, and they helped with the expenses so I could attend this match. This year they are not sponsoring a team.Very few Americans are willing to spend the time and money going to Europe for the European Championships, which is a shame, as I'm sure there are plenty of shooters in this country for which this is barely pocket change.

Thanks again, and I promise to do the best I can do!

Sunday, March 04, 2012

Steel Shooting - An Introduction

Since I’m involved with some sort of steel shooting or another on a daily basis, it’s easy to forget that not everyone has any idea exactly what I’m talking about.

So, what is this shooting sport called “Fun Steel”,  “Speed Steel”, “Steel Challenge” or whatever it’s called? It’s going to take a bit of explaining, as it gets a little foggy in places!

To start out, there are many different “Flavors” of steel competition, but they all have a few things in common. Although most pistol competitions stress accuracy, and only limit your time in which to take your shots enough to keep it from taking all day to finish the match, steel shooting is all about speed. Some refer to steel shooting as drag racing with guns, and that’s a pretty good analogy.

With traditional target shooting you are scored by how close your shots are to the center of a bullseye printed on a paper target. In steel shooting competition your score is based entirely on how long it takes for you to hit all of the targets. Sure, accuracy IS a part of it, as you do have to hit the targets or else have penalty seconds added to your score for the misses, but still, it’s all about speed.

With paper or cardboard targets, each shooter must have their own targets, or, as with cardboard targets, after each shooter has perforated the target, pieces of tape will be placed over the bullet holes so the next shooter has a fresh target.

The targets used in steel shooting are made from heavy-duty steel plate, preferably armor plate, and with good quality steel the bullets don’t even leave a mark. The targets are usually painted white between shooters, so the “hits” can easily be seen in the paint.  The targets are repainted, either with a spray can, or sometimes with a paint roller. It doesn’t matter where on the target the bullet hits, as long as it leaves a mark in the paint, even if it’s on the very edge (called an “Edger”) it counts as a hit.  Since most of the targets are usually round and painted white, they look a lot like dinner plates, and for that reason they are usually called “Plates” rather than targets. The targets hang on some sort of a hook arrangement on a stand that holds the plate up off the ground.

Each steel match typically consists of from five to eight “Stages” or sets of targets. Each stage will have five plates spread set out at various distances from seven to thirty-five yards from the shooter. Often one of the plates will be designated as the “Stop Plate”. The first four plates can be shot in any order, but the stop plate must be shot last. Some local or club matches don’t designate a stop plate, so you can shoot the plates in any order you like.

The shooter starts either with the gun holstered and hands up, or with the gun at a “Low Ready” position, depending on the caliber and class. The range officer will tell the shooter to “Make Ready” and the shooter will get into the starting position, ready to start shooting. The range officer will ask “Shooter Ready?” and if so, after a few seconds delay a buzzer will sound. The shooter then tries to hit each one of the plates once and then the stop plate.  If the shooter misses a plate, they are allowed to shoot it again, until it is hit. Once the stop plate has been hit, though, the run is over. The shooter’s time is recorded by a hand held timer that produces the starting buzzer and then records the total time acoustically by “hearing” the shots with its built in microphone. The shooter will shoot each stage fives times, and the slowest run of the five runs is discarded. The remaining four times are added together for the shooter’s total time for that stage. After shooting all of the stages, the stage times are added together, and that total is the shooter’s score for the match.

Steel shooting is a great type of competition for relatively new shooters, as any shooter with basic shooting skills can make the shots. There are no difficult shots that require master marksmanship. The difficulty of steel shooting is self-imposed by trying to shoot as fast as you can.

The rules used at any particular club can vary widely. That’s where the Steel Challenge Shooting Association comes in. SCSA is an International association that guarantees that wherever you may be in the world, if you shoot a SCSA sanctioned Steel Challenge match, you can expect the rules to be the same. Steel Challenge is a particular type of steel match, and to truly be a Steel Challenge match, it must be sanctioned by SCSA, and SCSA rules must be used. Fun Steel, Speed Steel, and the other match names I’ve mentioned are local, and the rules can vary widely from club to club, and will be whatever the local club decides they will be.

That briefly sums up what steel shooting is all about. I’ve left out a lot of details for now, but that should give you enough info that when you hear someone mention steel shooting you’ll have a pretty good idea what they are talking about.

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