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GW-1409-COVER.

qxp 7/2/14 7:08 AM Page US_C1

COLT PYTHONS ZOMBIE RESURRECTION

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RUGER AMERICAN
IN .30-06

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STAG ARMS 3GH UPPER

HODGDON
FOR HANGUNS

CFE PISTOL POWDER

ENHANCED

STOPPING POWER

DO IT
YOURSELF
10+ TIPS FOR

SIG SAUER P227 IN .45 ACP

MOUNTING SCOPES

SEPT 2014 VOLUME 55, NO.9 $4.99 U.S.


DISPLAY UNTIL: 9/9/14 www.gunworld.com

///////////////

09

CMMG MK4 T

VELOCITY WITH VERSATILITY


0

74470 03105
Engaged Media By Beckett

GW_1409_C2 6/30/14 2:28 AM Page C2

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GW_1409_3 6/27/14 4:19 AM Page 3

GW 14-09-TOC-4-7.CRX 4 7/3/14 11:40 PM Page 4

CONTENTS
14 Agency Adoption
SIG Sauers longawaited P227 offers
enhanced stopping power
and flexibility for law
enforcement applications.
By Leroy Thompson

24 Shape Shifter
Stag Arms understands
the need for exible and
modular mission capability,
and its 3GH upper is a
solution-in-a-box that
warrants a much closer look.
By Capt. John N. Raguso

34 Blackout Stakeout
A spot-and-stalk, boltaction veteran jumps at
the chance to put CMMGs
new Mk4 T rie to the test
against Texas hogs.
By Mike Dickerson

Mike Dickerson

FEATURES

SEPTEMBER 2014

34

46 Impressive View
The Taurus View may not
be entirely original, but it is
unique in how it combines
the best in traditional
snubnose revolver design
with the latest technology.
By Dr. Martin D. Topper

GUN WORLD | SEPT 2014

54 Red, White,
Blue & Bear
Ruger, Redeld, Crimson
Trace and Warne Scope
Mounts join forces on an
affordable, all-American
.30-06 hunting package.
By Brad Fitzpatrick

GUN WORLD (ISSN 0017-5641) Volume 55,


Number 9, is published monthly, 12 times
a year by Beckett Media, LLC, 22840 Savi
Ranch Parkway, #200, Yorba Linda, CA 92887.
Periodical postage paid at Anaheim, CA, and
additional mailing offices. POSTMASTER: Send
address changes to Gun World c/o Beckett
Media, 4635 McEwen Road, Dallas, TX 75244.
Return undelivered Canadian addresses to: Gun
World c/o Pitney Bowes, Inc. PO Box 25542,
London, ON N6C 6B GST#855050365RT001

www.gunworld.com

GW_1409_5 6/27/14 4:29 AM Page 5

Search. Find. Buy.


A5 Hunter

*UFN 0118003003
$BMJCFS12 Gauge, 3

t#MBDL"OPEJ[FE#J5POF'JOJTI
t4FNJ"VUPNBUJD
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Capacity: 4+1
t7FOU3JC
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t3FDPJM0QFSBUFE,JOFNBUJD%SJWF
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t#MBDL"OPEJ[FE#J5POF'JOJTI
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930 Waterfowl
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*UFN 85131
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Capacity: 4+1
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 *$ .PE 'VMM &YUSB'VMM

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t.BUUF#MBDL'JOJTI
t1VNQ"DUJPO
t.PTTZ0BL1JOL#MB[F$BNP4UPDL
tw-FOHUIPG1VMM
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SA-08 Deluxe

Setter ST

t)JHI1PMJTIFE#MVF'JOJTIXJUI4JMWFS3FDFJWFS
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t4JOHMF4FMFDUJWF5SJHHFS
t.VMUJ$IPLF ' *. . *$ 4,

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*UFN SA08D2828PGM
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Capacity: 4+1
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Get Your Instant Quote at www.galleryofguns.com


All firearms purchased from GalleryofGuns.com are covered by

the Davidsons GuaranteeD Lifetime Replacement Warranty.

2014 DAVIDSONS, INC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

GW 14-09-TOC-4-7 7/2/14 5:34 AM Page 6

Up Front
Craig Hodgkins

14

10 New Products
Gun World
Contributors
12

Ask the Experts


Gun World
Contributors
Leroy Thompson

COLUMNS

CONTENTS

64 Todays Hunter
Thomas C. Tabor
70 Reload
James E. House
76 Concealed Carry
Dave Workman
82 Gunsmithing
Steve Sieberts

46
Dr. Martin D. Topper

92 Questions &
Answers
The Editors

Steve Sieberts

96 Back Pages
Craig Hodgkins

82
ON THE COVER:
Photographs by Sig Sauer/Ron Eldridge & CMMG
Cover design by Johann
Frederick Mendoza

GUN WORLD | SEPT 2014

www.gunworld.com

GW_1409_7 6/27/14 4:35 AM Page 7

GW 14-09_UPFRONT-8-9 7/15/14 10:50 PM Page 8

UP FRONT
SEPT 2014 VOLUME 55 NUMBER 9

VAQUEROS & LUMBERJACKS


By Craig Hodgkins

This week I received a notice

Today, its no secret that 3-Gun

about an upcoming 3-Gun compe-

competitions are proliferating, and

tition, and it got me thinking about

for good reason. Human beings

vaqueros and lumberjacks.

tend to be a competitive lot, and if

Rodeo evolved into a sport be-

someone has developed prociency

cause one vaquero (or his friends)

with rearms, and theres an oppor-

wanted to see how he measured up

tunity to prove he or she is faster or

against someone from an adjoining

more accurate (or both) than

ranch in skills hed acquired or de-

someone else, it isnt hard to con-

veloped on the job.

vince them to put their money

These talents often included


horsemanship, dexterity with a lariat,
and the ability and stamina to ride or
wrestle a steer. These skills lent
themselves to competition, but at
the end of a very long day, they were
also life-sustaining skills. Without

where their mouth is.

Human beings
tend to be a
competitive lot...

A few decades ago, I wrote fea-

But as with vaqueros and lumberjacks, 3-Gun competitors (as

theme park. One weekend, an entire

well as those in a myriad of older,

course was constructed along the

more established shooting con-

riverfront for the various events of a

tests) have an opportunity to gain

lumberjack competition.

much more than ribbons, trophies

petitors played can you top this in

and oversized checks.


Each practice round hones re-

eye-popping exhibitions of axe

action times under stress and

throwing, wood splitting, tree limb-

brings a greater working knowledge

ing, and logrolling. Again, with the

of all the required equipment.

possible exception of axe throwing,


these were job skills on steroids.

IN SOCIAL MEDIA:
Website: www.GunWorld.com
Facebook: www.facebook.com/
GunWorldMagazine
Twitter: @gunworldmag
Pocketmags

GUN WORLD | SEPT 2014

Todd Burgreen, Jerry Catania, Mike Dickerson,


Brad Fitzpatrick, Paul Hantke, James House, Jameson
Parker, Buck Pope, D.K. Pridgen, John Raguso, Steve
Sieberts, Dave Spaulding, Tom Tabor, Chuck Taylor, Leroy
Thompson, Martin Topper, Dave Workman

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GUN WORLD (ISSN 0017-5641) Volume 55, Number 9, is


published monthly, 12 times a year by Beckett Media, LLC,
22840 Savi Ranch Parkway, #200, Yorba Linda, CA 92887.
Periodical postage paid at Anaheim, CA, and additional
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In these uncertain times, those


may just turn out to be life-sustaining skills. GW

GUN WORLD

CONTRIBUTORS

22840 Savi Ranch Parkway, #200


Yorba Linda, CA 92887
(714) 939-9991
www.gunworld.com
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a well-known Southern California

I watched in awe as the com-

Editor In Chief: Craig Hodgkins


Managing Editor: Kari Windes
Senior Creative Director: Eric Knagg
Art Director: Johann Frederick Mendoza

EDITORIAL, PRODUCTION & SALES OFFICE

them, a vaquero was out of a job.


tures for the company newsletter at

EDITORIAL

Beckett Media, LLC


Nick Singh: Executive Director
Jennifer Degtjarewsky: Group Editorial
& Business Unit Director
This magazine is purchased by the buyer with the understanding that information presented is from various
sources from which there can be no warranty or responsibility by Beckett Media, LLC as to the legality, completeness or technical accuracy.
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GW_1409_9 6/27/14 4:41 AM Page 9

GW 14-09-PRODUCTS-10-11.CRX 10 7/3/14 11:45 PM Page 10

NEW
PRODUCTS

SILENCE IS GOLDEN

SilencerCos Harvester Family Of Sound


Suppressors Are Designed For Hunters
Photos courtesy of SilencerCo/Dewey Keithly

As more and more states pass

grade stainless steel baffle design

The Harvester
adds less than 12
ounces to this
Remington 700
in .243 Win.

The Harvester Big Bore is rated

legislation allowing the use of si-

place them among the lightest cen-

for magnum calibers up to and in-

lencers and suppressors for hunt-

terre silencers available.

cluding the .338 Lapua. GW

ing, a variety of manufacturers have


begun to discover that silence can
be golden. One company, West Val-

THE HARVESTER
This model was specically de-

ley, Utah-based SilencerCo, has fo-

signed for hunting and long-range

cused its attentions solely on this

precision shooting applications.

growing segment.

Utilizing its lightweight design, the

Founded in 2008 with the goal

end of your barrel. Because it uti-

ideas to forever change the land-

lizes modular thread adapters, the

scape of the suppressor industry,

Harvester can be used on a wide

SilencerCo seeks to creates prod-

range of threaded barrels, and the

ucts that will improve sound reduc-

anchor brake offers excellent recoil

tion levels, durability and longevity,

reduction across a range of calibers.

and maintenance.
SilencerCos Harvester & Harvester Big Bore sound suppressors

The Harvester is rated for magnum calibers up to and including


300 Winchester Magnum (minimum of 24-inch barrel).

are designed specically for hunting and long-range precision shooters handling larger calibers. The use

This unit encapsulates all the


features of the Harvester, but adds

each of these an excellent choice

the capability to allow the use of a

for a variety of shooting disciplines,

modular adapter to utilize various

and the fully welded hardened tool-

mounting options.

GUN WORLD | SEPT 2014

HARVESTER 30
Caliber: .300
Weight: 11.3 ounces
Diameter: 1.375 inches
Length: 8.80 inches
Sound Reduction:
21-34 dB

THE HARVESTER BIG BORE

of modular thread adapters make

10

SPECIFICATIONS

Harvester is barely noticed on the

of providing new, forward-thinking

form and function, and ease of use

For more information on


SilencerCo and its products, visit
the website at SilencerCo.com or
call (801) 417-5384.

Finish:
Hardcoat Anodized
MSRP: $750
(with thread mount)

www.gunworld.com

GW_1409_11 6/27/14 4:49 AM Page 11

www.silencerco.com

GW 14-09-EXPERTS-12-13 7/2/14 5:12 AM Page 12

ASK the
EXPERTS

We do the research so you dont have to.


However, the H&K MK 23, Mod
0 was specically developed to give

The Heckler &


Koch MK23.

special operations personnel a pistol to be employed during offensive


operations, especially clandestine
raids. Chambered for the .45 ACP
cartridge and with a magazine capacity of 12 rounds, the MK 23 can
hit hard but may still be used with
one hand or in conned spaces.
The offensive capability is
enhanced by the suppressor developed for the weapon by Knights Armament Company and LAM (Laser
Aiming Module) developed by Insight Technology. These allow the
pistol to be used at close range to
take out enemy personnel during
direct action operations.
Though very effective for cer-

INTENTIONALLY OFFENSIVE
Question: I read in an article
that the MK 23 Pistol is considered an offensive pistol.
What makes it different from
other military handguns?
Randy W., Lake Forest, California

tain operations, the MK23 is a


good-sized pistol at 16.5 inches
overall with suppressor mounted, or
9.65 inches without the suppressor
and a weight of 5 pounds loaded

The MK 23 can hit


hard, but may still be used
with one hand or in
conned spaces.

secondary weapon should the pri-

with LAM and suppressor mounted.


As a result, some special units carry
a companion defensive pistol
rather than the MK23. The SEALs
normally carry a SIG P226, and
Special Forces operators currently
carry Glocks.

Leroy Thompson Answers: Gen-

mary weapon go down. The latter is

erally, in the military, pistols are

especially true for special opera-

used most often by US Navy SWCC

viewed as defensive weapons when

tions personnel who may not be in

(Special Warfare Combat-Craft

used by troops who will not nor-

position to be readily supplied with

Crewmen) who deliver the SEALs

mally see frontline combat, or as a

a replacement rie or carbine.

on some missions. GW

I have actually seen the MK23

OUR SEPTEMBER EXPERTS:


Leroy Thompson is an internationally recognized authority on weapons and tactics, and is the author of more than
50 books. His current feature on SIG Sauers P227 may be found on page 14.
Thomas C. Tabor is Gun Worlds resident hunting columnist, and routinely goes aeld in pursuit of small birds, large
game and good stories. His Todays Hunter column may be found on page 64.

12

GUN WORLD | SEPT 2014

www.gunworld.com

GW 14-09-EXPERTS-12-13 7/2/14 5:12 AM Page 13

Shed hunters often nd freshly shed antlers beside ones shed months earlier with the color bleached out. You can either leave them in
that condition, or try your hand at restoring the color.

SHEDDING COLOR
Question: I read your recent
column on shed antlers, but
would like a bit more information. I frequently nd sheds
bleached by the sun, particularly on the upper surfaces. Is
there any way to restore the
color for a more natural look,
and if so, how?

its monetary value takes a hit as


well. It only takes a few weeks lying
in the penetrating sun to bleach the
color out.
Taxidermists frequently use

antler wax or antler conditioner to


articially bring back the color, and

be seen. It is all too easy to overdo

these products are available for

it, turning the entire horn into an

sale from many taxidermy supply

ugly, unnatural-looking disaster.

houses.

Kent H., Kansas City, Missouri

Taxidermists
frequently use antler wax
or antler conditioner

Another method I have occa-

Once mounted, your sheds


should always be stored away from

sionally used is to apply a very thin

the direct sun to maintain as much

Tom Tabor Answers: Loss of

layer of walnut stain, but I would

of the natural beauty as possible. I

color in an antler can be a big prob-

certainly advise that you use a con-

often cringe when I see people who

lem for shed hunters. When this

siderable amount of caution using

carelessly store their antlers out-

happens the antler loses much of

stain, and to always test it out on an

side, allowing them to slowly dete-

its visual appeal and in many cases

old set or in a place where it wont

riorate in the sun. GW

www.gunworld.com

SEPT 2014 | GUN WORLD

13

GW 14-09-P227-14-23 7/2/14 5:15 AM Page 14

AGENCY ADOPTION
SIG Sauers Long-Awaited P227 Offers
Enhanced Stopping Power And Flexibility
For Law Enforcement Applications
Story & Photos by Leroy Thompson

y appreciation of the
SIG P226 dates to
when it was one of
the two nalists, along with
the Beretta 92, in the 1984 U.S.
service pistol trials. Much
drama surrounded the
selection of the Beretta M9
that year, with many feeling
the P226 was a better pistol.
Still, the SEALs wanted the
P226 and got it, and the P228
was adopted by the U.S.
Armed Forces as the M11 for
issuance to those needing a
more compact pistol.

14

GUN WORLD | SEPT 2014

www.gunworld.com

GW 14-09-P227-14-23 7/2/14 5:15 AM Page 15

The P227 is similar in size to


the P226, but is chambered in
.45 ACP. This new SIG Sauer
has an accessory rail, making
it suitable for several accessories, including this Streamlight TLR-2s Tactical Light.

www.gunworld.com

SEPT 2014 | GUN WORLD

15

GW 14-09-P227-14-23 7/2/14 5:15 AM Page 16

Despite being chambered for the .45 ACP round, the P227 shows only moderate recoil, and allows fast recovery after a shot.

Thus, when the P226 (with its 15+1

concealment, but just a little. The

for many years, but by the mid-

capacity) was introduced, I immedi-

latest P226 grips have helped slim

1980s I was ready for a high capac-

ately ordered one, and I have re-

the pistol in the hand.

ity, double action auto. Id used the

mained a fan of the pistol.

I carried a Browning Hi-Power

CZ75 on some overseas jobs and

My rst contact with a SIG in

PERSONAL PREFERENCE

liked its feel, which was similar to

.45 ACP may have been with a

the Hi-Powers, as well as the ability

Browning BDA, as the earliest P220

safety/hammer drop, as on S&W

to carry it ready for a rst DA round

imports, with bottom magazine

pistols such as the Model 59 series

or cocked and locked.

release, were designated. Im not

or the Beretta M9, but I like the

sure.

SIGs hammer drop, which drops

But I was also a major fan of


SIG pistols. Id used a P210 as a

However, the rst one I remem-

Some users prefer a manual

the hammer and returns to the re

second gun to my Hi-Power when

ber shooting belonged to an FBI

position. My hands are small

working close protection jobs, as I

agent in the St. Louis office. I liked the

enough, though, that I cannot work

felt the P210 gave me longer-range

pistol, which was utterly reliable and

the hammer drop (de-cocker) with

capability.

very accurate. Its single-stack

the thumb of my right hand without

I had also red the Swiss

magazine allowed the grip to remain

shifting my shooting grip; I have to

military issue P75, which was a 9 x

relatively small, though I never really

use my support side thumb. I can

19mm single-stack version of the

found the P226 grip too thick, but

work the slide release without shift-

P220. Because I had worked in

many did.

ing my ring position.

environments where the ability to

Well, let me rephrase that: I

I also nd the P226 an easy pis-

deliver sustained re during an

didnt nd it too thick in the hand,

tol to disassemble by just rotating

evacuation under re was

but I was carrying it in an inside-

the disassembly lever downward

important, I had a preference for

the-waistband holster and some-

90 degrees and removing the slide

high capacity 9 x 19mm weapons.

times it was a little thick for

assembly from the frame.

16

GUN WORLD | SEPT 2014

www.gunworld.com

GW 14-09-P227-14-23 7/2/14 5:15 AM Page 17

The three primary controls for the P227, left to right: takedown lever, de-cocker, slide release.

When SIG introduced the DAK

After a couple of years, though, I

ENHANCED
STOPPING POWER

system, I purchased a pistol with

went to the lighter 4563, which was

that smooth DA-only feature and

the same gun, but with an alloy

have since purchased a couple

frame. Both were in .45 ACP. I still

of the P227which is basically a

more, and would recommend the

carried a 9 x 19mm pistol as a

P226-sized gun chambered for the

DAK versions for law enforcement.

pocket gun (Kahr PM9 or HK

.45 ACPI became very interested,

Some years ago, some friends and I

P2000SK, depending on the

and I was not alone. Many law en-

had Performance Center 4566 pis-

pocket), but for many years now,

forcement agencies that previously

tols made, and I found that I liked

the 4563 has stayed in my night-

used 9x19mm or .40 S&W handguns

the pistol so much that I switched

stand along with its holster or on

have changed to .45 ACP weapons to

to carrying it when I used a belt gun.

my belt when applicable.

gain enhanced stopping power. For

When I saw the announcement

Many law
enforcement agencies
have changed to .45 ACP
weapons to gain enhanced
stopping power.

Right side view of the P227.


Note the rail for mounting
various illuminators or pointers.

www.gunworld.com

SEPT 2014 | GUN WORLD

17

GW 14-09-P227-14-23.CRX 18,19,22 7/3/14 11:47 PM Page 18

cess. My own experience and that


of many law enforcement trainers
has also shown that if personnel
carry weapons with lights mounted
it has to be emphasized that they
carry a separate light for normal
lighting tasks (i.e. the light on the
gun should not be used to check
identication, and so forth.)
The SIG Sauer duty holster is
very cleverly designed for retention,
but with quick access. When the pis-

A good view of the P227s slide markings and rail.

tol is in the holster (with or without


such agencies, the P227 should be

open enough to slide onto the

light mounted), a hinged cap pivots

very appealing due to SIG Sauers es-

P227s rails until the crosspiece is in

over the top of the slide and sights

tablished reputation in law enforce-

position. The turnkey is then tight-

and snaps in place. Along with fric-

ment and the fact that SIG pistols

ened to hold the illuminator in posi-

tion, this retains the pistol. Pressing

normally do very well in law enforce-

tion. At 130 peak Lumens, it is bright

down a button naturally with the

ment testing.

enough for all types of use. The

thumb during the draw releases the

strobe feature can also be useful

retention cap and allows the pistol to

tols with an accessory rail to make a

for disorienting an opponent,

be drawn straight upward.

weapon light, another advantageous

though some persons subject to

feature on the P227. And, for agen-

epileptic seizures reportedly can be

cies that already use a P226R (The

affected by strobes.

Many agencies now adopt pis-

R indicates that the pistol has an

One note on the STL-900: the

accessory rail), the same duty hol-

instructions are not clear on how to

sters will normally t the P227, and 11

open the battery compartment.

rounds of .45 ACP (with a round

After staring at the side where the

chambered) give a substantial num-

compartment is located, I eventu-

ber of follow-up rounds, especially

ally gured out that it is necessary

with a pistol chambered for the .45

to loosen the screw above it for ac-

ACP cartridge.

I like the P227 quite


a bit, and am thinking
about making it my
belt-carry .45 DA

Although I term this a duty

holster, it came with a paddle de-

I use a Blade-Tech holster designed for a P226 with light


mounted, but for this test I wanted
to try SIGs own Level 2 duty holster for a P227 with the SIG Sauer
STL-900 Tactical Light and Laser
mounted. The illuminator on this
unit is well designed and compact.
It offers the choice of constant
light, strobe, or laser, the latter of
which can operate with the light or
independently. It also has the type
of quick attach/detach system
that I like.
Turning a folding turnkey head

A view of the P227s slim


grip (for a double stack .45);
note the texturing, which
allows a solid grip even in the
rain or with sweaty palms.

allows the jaws of the illuminator to


18

GUN WORLD | SEPT 2014

www.gunworld.com

GW_1409_19 6/27/14 4:54 AM Page 19

GW 14-09-P227-14-23 7/2/14 5:16 AM Page 20

SPECIFICATIONS
SIG SAUER P227
Action: Double action/single action
Caliber: .45 ACP
Overall Length: 7.7 inches
P227 in SIG-Sauers Level 2 holster for the P226 or P227; note
that the hammer/slide is covered
and the holster is designed for
carry with the SIG STL900 affixed.

Barrel Length: 4.4 inches


Weight: With empty magazine
32 ounces
Magazine Capacity: 10 rounds
(14 round magazine to be available)
Sights: Front post, rear notch,
with SIGLITE Night Sights on test gun

The P227 in one of


Thompsons favorite
belt holsters for
concealed carry: the
Kramer Belt Scabbard.

MSRP: $749 and up


signed to allow it to be quickly attached to the belt. It would serve
for concealed carry, but it does stick
out further than I like for concealed
carry. It should work well for law enforcement officers working in soft

tions if it gets a little dirty. I did

bered, muzzle awareness is para-

clothes, however. Just as a quick

squirt a little oil on the rails before

mount. I havent seen a DAK version

test, I tried Streamlights TLR 2s

each shooting session. To the best

of the P227 yet, though Im sure one

Tactical Light and Laser since I had

of my recollection, I did not have

will be available. For agency issue, I

it set up for mounting on SIG rails,

any malfunctions.

would recommend that a DAK ver-

and it worked ne as well.

Before discussing accuracy, Ill

sion be purchased.

offer a couple of other comments

At 25 yards, the P227 was rela-

that may apply especially for law

tively accurate. A friend shot a ve-

enforcement adoption. Pulling back

shot group of about 3.75 inches

three times now and put 100

the slide against the P227s recoil

with the Federal 185-grain load, and

rounds through it each time. I took

spring requires some effort, cer-

that was the best with that ammo.

some hand loads that I buy in bulk

tainly more than with a 9 x 19mm

The sights were off with groups a

for function and general handing

P226. Although I nd the grips com-

couple of inches left, but I borrowed

testing, while for accuracy testing I

fortable, anyone with hands smaller

a SIG-Sauer sight pusher and have

took Cor-Bon 200-grain +P JHP

than mine will likely nd it too thick.

taken care of that.

and Black Hills 185-grain JHP and

I do not nd recoil at all excessive,

230-grain FMJ. Ive done the shoot-

but I shoot thousands of rounds of

DA/SA autos is to re a group of

ing tests over more than a month

.45 ACP per year. Finally, since the

double taps with the rst round DA

and have not cleaned the pistol yet

P227s de-cocker must be manually

and the second round SA to see

as I like to see how a new gun func-

operated after a round is cham-

how much difference in impact

ROUND FIGURES
Ive taken the P227 to the range

20

GUN WORLD | SEPT 2014

Another test I like to do with

www.gunworld.com

GW_1409_21 6/27/14 5:02 AM Page 21

GW 14-09-P227-14-23.CRX 18,19,22 7/3/14 11:48 PM Page 22

To pop up the slide/rear


sight cover of the SIG Sauer
Level 2 holster, the lever at
left of the holster is naturally
pressed with the thumb.

SA were usable and did not

and rarely do. This one is no excep-

seem gritty or to stack unduly.

tion. The invoice for the P227 is on

To be honest, I want to test a

my bills to pay stack. GW

P227 with DAK trigger for comparison, as Ive gotten used to the
A 25-yard ve-shot offhand group using
Black Hills 185-grain JHP ammunition.

steady pull of the DAK for all


shots.
I like the P227 quite a bit, and

point there is between the two. I

am thinking about making it my

red 10 rounds quickly, coming up

belt carry .45 DA, although I need to

from the low ready for each double

shoot it some more to decide if I

tap at 15 yards and found that all

want the DA/SA model Ive tested

except one were center of mass on

or the DAK model. Ive already or-

a killer clown target. The one that

dered ve extra ten-round maga-

was off to the left still impacted the

zines and will order three more

clown.

14-round ones, as I like to have ten

I also did a series of double

mags for pistols I use a lot.

taps from the low-ready position

Ive also ordered a Kramer Belt

on pepper poppers and plates at

slide holster, which is one of my fa-

15-35 yards. Mostly, I wanted to

vorites for belt carry. Since its been

see how the P227 was for quick

a while since I carried a P226 regu-

handling, and it responded well.

larly, I do have to adjust to a

The rear sight notch is open

slightly fatter belt gun than Ive

enough that acquiring the front

been using. Still, I like the idea of

sight quickly was easier than with

SIG Sauer accuracy and reliability

many pistols Ive tried.

in a carry gun. I definitely see an LE

SIG Sauer advertises the SA

market for agencies that have been

pull as 4.4 pounds and the DA pull

using a P226 and want to go to a

as 10 pounds. That seems about

larger caliber.

right to me. I wouldnt call either


trigger pull great, but both DA and
22

GUN WORLD | SEPT 2014

When I test SIG Sauer pistols, I

CONTACTS
SIG Sauer, Inc.
(603) 610-3000
SigSauer.com
Streamlight
(800) 523-7488
Streamlight.com/en-us
Blade-Tech
(877) 331-5793
Shop.Blade-Tech.com
Kramer Leather
(800) 510-2666
KramerLeather.com
Black Hills Ammunition
(605) 348-5150
BlackHills.com
Cor-Bon Ammunition
(800) 626-7266
CorBon.com

always nd them hard to send back


www.gunworld.com

GW_1409_23 6/27/14 5:05 AM Page 23

In 1990 a Navy SEAL was navigating a mineeld when his pack failed. As his gear tumbled to the ground,
he vowed that if he got out of there alive he would make gear the right way. Today this obsession with
quality applies to everything we do. Were constantly researching, rening and perfecting every detail
to provide gear that wont let you down. Because were not just making stuff. Were honoring a vow.

GEAR AS PREPARED
AS YOU ARE.

GW 14-09-STAG-24-33 7/2/14 5:27 AM Page 24

The author tests the Stag 3G


upper, using Midwest Industries
ip-up, rail-mounted iron sights.
Test ammo included a wide range
of loads, including Winchester's
5.56 NATO M193 55-grain and
M855 62-grain FMJBT; Hornady's
.223 Rem 60-grain TAP and 75grain BTHP; and Federal's .223
Rem 55-grain FMJBT and 69-grain
Gold Match SMK.

24

GUN WORLD | SEPT 2014

www.gunworld.com

GW 14-09-STAG-24-33 7/2/14 5:27 AM Page 25

SHAPE SHIFTER
Stags 3G Upper Will Transform
Your AR-15 Into A Real Competitor
Story & Photos by Capt. John N. Raguso

wo seasons back, Stag Arms debuted its


popular 3G/3-Gun model mil-spec AR-15
clone with great success. Understanding
the desire of most AR-15 owners for exible and
modular mission capability, this New Britain, CT
manufacturer now offers the upper-half-only
portion of this 3-Gun platform for those potential
customers who prefer to upgrade an existing
AR-15 platform for 3-Gun matches or other
run-and-gun events. The Stag 3GH (and 3GHL
for lefties) is a solution-in-a-box that warrants a
much closer look.

www.gunworld.com

SEPT 2014 | GUN WORLD

25

GW 14-09-STAG-24-33.CRX 26,27,30 7/3/14 11:50 PM Page 26

The Stag's 3G upper mated perfectly with the authors mil-spec Rock River Arms National Match lower. Note the Stags optional
chrome-plated BCG that is visible through the open ejection port.

3-GUN SPECIALIST PLUS


A call to Stag revealed the
mission statement of this relatively
new upper. According to sales manager, Dave Larson, The Model 3GH
was manufactured specically for
the speed, agility, and accuracy
needed for shooting 3-Gun competitions, hunting and target shooting.
Working with our newly formed
3-Gun shooting team, Team Stag
Arms, we have determined the
features and conguration that will
have the broadest appeal and use
in competition.
With the 3GH, Larson continued, competitors are able to

The Stag 3Gs Samson Evolution free-oat hand guard allows each operator to add
modular rail sections whenever and wherever they are needed. Noted the uted, heavy,
stainless steel barrel visible though the hand guard vents.

produce fast and accurate shots


from close to long range as is

racy is the Samson Evolution hand-

needed in 3-Gun competitions.

guard, which is free oating and

and straightforward. Manufactured

Boasting an 18-inch stainless steel,

modular, allowing the attachment of

from a forged block of T7075 mil-

uted, heavy barrel with a rie

rail sections or sling mounts along

spec aluminum, the machined

length gas system and the new Stag

the handguard. This also grants the

upper is protected with a type 3

Arms 3G compensator, recoil im-

shooter the ability to mount acces-

hard coat anodizing, and tted with

pulse is greatly reduced allowing for

sories as needed but not be bur-

an E.R. Shaw uted stainless steel

fast follow-up shots. Aiding in accu-

dened with a full quad rail.

barrel sporting a 5.56 NATO cham-

26

GUN WORLD | SEPT 2014

The layout of the 3GH is simple

www.gunworld.com

GW 14-09-STAG-24-33.CRX 26,27,30 7/3/14 11:51 PM Page 27

RAPID TRANSITION SIGHTS


If the Trijicon or other ACOG is
your preferred primary optic and you
need a set of ready back up iron
sights, installing a set of Dueck Defense Rapid Transition Sights (RTS)
on the Stags extending Picatinny rail
is definitely the way to go. Designed
by 3-Gun shooter and IPSC Grand
Master Barry Dueck, they allow rapid
transition from optical to iron sights
that are canted off at an angle from
the top rails centerline, so both optical and irons are always in place and
ready to go.
The RTS pair (front and rear) is
machined from 7075 aluminum alloy
bar stock, coated with a durable milspec hard anodized nish, offers MOA elevation and windage
adjustments on the rear sight, works
for both right-handed and left-handed
shooters and is made in the U.S.
The MSRP is $238 for the set.

MISSION FULFILLED
After eld-testing the Stag

platform to take on your next pig


hunt that can stabilize the heavier

3GH upper, theres no doubt that

75-grain and 77-grain ammo to drop

this bona de shape shifter can

ol porky? Maybe a consistent bulls-

exhibit a number of different per-

eye shooter at the range, or some-

sonalities, depending on the op-

thing to snipe a troublesome varmint

erators mood.

at the ranch? Check, check and

Need a tack-driving paper

check the Stag 3GH with its uted

puncher? No problemo. This one

stainless heavy prole barrel, cou-

delivers MOA accuracy or better

pled with a 1:8 twist rate, has each of

when fed the right ammo. How

these mission requirements covered.

about a rapid-re steel plate


slayer? Check; denitely can do.
Or maybe you need to drop

Like most mil-spec AR-15


clones, the Stag 3GH is a veritable
quick-change artist and can literally

steel poppers at 200 yards and

mount to your favorite lower in 5

require a spot to add some mag-

seconds or less. This is accom-

nied optics, like an ACOG,

plished by lining up the upper re-

VCOG or traditional variable

ceivers fore-and-aft attachment

ber. This 18-inch tube offers a 1:8

power scope? This one can de-

lugs with the lowers corresponding

twist rate, optimum for stabilizing

nitely make it rain, with dedi-

openings on either end of the mag-

heavier 75-grain and 77-grain, open-

cated T-marked Picatinny rail

azine well and pistol grip. Snap the

tip match projectiles. Stag tops off

positions both on the upper and

pivot and takedown pins into place

the 410-stainless steel Shaw barrel

on the standard Samson Evolu-

and you are in business and ready

with a compensator thats an in-

tion free-oat rail.

for action.

house design.

How about a quick-handling

I attached the Stag 3GH to the

The Stag 3G features a standard charging handle, but the author chose the optional chrome-plated bolt and bolt carrier group for
easy cleanups after extended shooting sessions.

www.gunworld.com

SEPT 2014 | GUN WORLD

27

GW 14-09-STAG-24-33 7/2/14 5:28 AM Page 28

SPECIFICATIONS
Action: Semi-auto, direct gas
impingement
Chamber: 5.56 NATO
(this upper will also shoot .223 Rem)
Pivot/Takedown Pin Size: Small pin
(0.250-inches)
Muzzle Device: Stag 3G compensator
Barrel: E.R. Shaw, 18-inch, 410 stainless steel, uted, heavy barrel prole
Barrel Twist Rate: 1:8, button ried
Handguard: Samson Evolution 15-inch
free-oating, three accessory rails
Upper Receiver: Forged, mil-spec,
type three hardcoat anodizing, with
Picatinny rail

The author attacks a target using the Stag 3G's M/I iron sights. Note the Trijicon RMR
reex canted off on the right side of the Samson rail, ready for immediate transition
should the need arise.

Bolt & Carrier: Enhanced semi-auto


with a manganese phosphate coating
(HP & MPI tested bolt, M16 bolt carrier
and chrome-plated bolt and BCG also
available)

lower receiver of my Rock River Na-

manufacturers; no aftermarket

tional Match rie, which is outtted

Accu-Wedge is needed here!

Charging Handle: Standard mil-spec

was picture perfect, with nary a

lessly with the Stags chrome-

trace of wobble or shake. You could

plated bolt and carrier (a $30

barely see sunlight pass through

upgrade) and it was as if they were

the two receivers horizontal seam

meant for each other from the get-

and it was as rock solid a connec-

go. Although I rarely use my Rock

tion as you could expect from two

River National Match rie unless

disparate (although mil-spec)

shooting a competitive match,

with an A2 stock kit and an excellent two-stage trigger.


The marriage of upper to lower

Front Sight: None


Rear Sight: None
MSRP: $775 (3GH)- $785 (3GHL)
Warranty: One year

The Rock Rivers two-stage


trigger with specialized hammer
and disconnector worked seam-

This one delivers


MOA accuracy or
better when fed the
right ammo.

28

GUN WORLD | SEPT 2014

Midwest Industries ip-up front and rear rail sights (left and right) ank its offset rail
sight mount that allows the simultaneous use of a small rapid transition reex sight, like
this Trijicon RMR.

www.gunworld.com

GW 14-09-STAG-24-33 7/2/14 5:28 AM Page 29

CORBON
PROVEN

Go to www.corbon.com for details!
Call or email us and mention ad CBG-GW14 for a free gift from CORBON/Glaser Ammunition.

adding the Stag 3GH upper to


the mix offers me a lot more
mission exibility with this setup
and thats the point.

LIKES AND DISLIKES


Although this Stag 3GH
worked great with all of the
name-brand, made-in-USA
M855 and .223 Match ammo
that I could feed it (a list which
included Federal/American
Eagle, Winchester and Hornady),
there were a few rounds that it
just didnt like. For reasons
known only to its creators, this
upper would not function reliably with any of the Silver Bear
(Barnual) 62-grain HPBT or 55grain FMJBT ammo I attempted
to send down the tube. It would
short stroke on absolutely each
and every one.
Even if I attempted to fool it
and sneak a stray Silver Bear carwww.gunworld.com

SEPT 2014 | GUN WORLD

29

GW 14-09-STAG-24-33.CRX 26,27,30 7/8/14 11:52 PM Page 30

STAG 3GH RANGE RESULTS WITH TRIJICON TA11E-A 3.5X35 ACOG


Manufacturer
& Load

Best Five-shot Group

Average Five-shot Group


(Five groups)@ 100-yards

Muzzle Velocity
(Manufacturers specs)

Federal/American
Eagle M855 NATO
62-gr FMJBTSPC

1.30 inches

1.50 inches

3,020 fps/20-inch barrel

Winchester Ranger
M855 NATO 62-gr
FMJBTSPC

1.37 inches

1.55 inches

3,095 fps/20-inch barrel

0.75 inches

0.95 inches

2,790 fps/24-inch barrel

Hornady .223 Rem


Match 75-gr HPBT

tridge into a magazine of Federals

hundred rounds of M855 left over

cleaned up fairly easily with a mini-

American Eagle M855 or Winchester

from the Mil-Spec Shootout I re-

mum of effort with just some

Ranger green tip, it could pick it out

cently conducted for this magazine,

Break Free CLP, a clean cloth and a

each and every time, like a drug-sniff-

and this was all totally good-to-go.

standard AR-15 kit double-ended

ing canine and completely shut down

It was the same deal with the Hor-

nylon brush.

the operation. As an aside, most of

nady 75-grain Match .223 Rem

the Rock River, Colt, Bushmaster and

ammo that I fed it; absolutely no

Frankenstein ARs I have tested his-

hiccups. Rapid re, slow re, maga-

torically have had no trouble digest-

zine dumps, whatever nothing

and at the range conrmed that

ing this zinc-plated steel case ammo,

bothered it.

when outtted with the proper op-

which has been some of the least

When I performed some quick

REAL WORLD RESULTS


Operating the 3GH in the eld

tics and fed top-shelf ammo, this

problematic Russian ammo I have

field maintenance after an ex-

Stag can shoot with the best of

used in the past.

tended firing session, the Stags

them. I was able to produce a num-

chrome-plated bolt and carrier

ber of ve-shot groups that meas-

As most AR owners know, it


could be caused by many reasons,
from not having enough power to
cycle the action, to the steel case
not making a tight enough seal in
the chamber (compared to the
brass-cased ammo) to ensure max
gas pressure, to the inherently dirtier ammo clogging up the directgas impingement operation, etc.
Just be advised that this upper
didnt care for the Silver Bear
ammo.
In contrast, there were no such
problems with any of the brasscased USA ammo that were sent
downrange in the Stag. I had a few

30

GUN WORLD | SEPT 2014

Test ammo included standard M855 62-grain FMJBT green tip from Federal and Winchester, in addition to Hornady's proven 75-grain BTHP .223 match load for precision work.
The 10-round magazines from AR-Stoner/ASC (left and right) and Magpul's Gen3 P-Mag
(center) fed awlessly for hundreds of rounds red through the Stag 3G upper.

www.gunworld.com

GW_1409_31 6/27/14 5:21 AM Page 31

GW 14-09-STAG-24-33 7/2/14 5:28 AM Page 32

Dedicated 3-Gun fans will probably outt the Stag 3G with a set of offset Dueck Defense RTS rapid transition sights, which are adjustable for both windage (rear) and elevation (front and rear), in combination with its favorite optic on the top Picatinny rail.

ured just less than an inch at 100


yards with Hornadys 75-grain .223

its ve-shot groups as well.


To ensure this consistent accu-

the Dueck RTS canted irons on the


side, but its just another way to

Match ammo using a Caldwell

racy downrange, I bolted a Trijicon

Tack-Driver bean bag set on top of

TA11E-A 3.5 x 35 ACOG (Advanced

a wooden range bench.

Combat Optical Gunsight) onto the

with a traditional hunting scope

play the game.


Of course, you can always go

Stags Picatinny rail and put the tip

and rings on the topside P-rail and

position or working a run-and-gun

of the amber chevron onto the cen-

this shooter performed totally

target course, I could feel the Stags

ter of the target and squeezed the

lights out armed with a Weaver

proprietary comp design doing its

Rock River lowers two-stage trig-

variable power 3-12 x 42mm Grand

thing, pushing the muzzle down to

ger. Its extremely hard to miss the

Slam scope at 100 yards with con-

allow fast follow-up shots without

bulls-eye with this ringer in the

sistent sub-MOA groups and is just

losing my sight picture.

game on your side.

the ticket for sniping or truly long

When migrating to my offhand

If pinpoint accuracy is paramount in your 3GH operations, I had


the most consistent results feeding

distance shots.

MULTI-SIGHT
For yet another one of its per-

If you are looking to transform


one of your plain-Jane mil-spec AR-

this upper Hornadys proven 75-grain

sonality changeovers, I adapted the

15 platforms into a real competitor,

BTHP .223 Match (load #8026). This

Stag 3GH to perform with a set of

or simply need a quality upper to

Hornady Match projectiles 0.395

Midwest Industries ip-up low pro-

complete an AR-15 lower build, you

ballistic coefficient is superior to

le iron sights front and rear, while

should denitely give the Stag 3GH

most other .223 Rem and .5.56 NATO

also employing an MI 22.5-degree

a closer look. GW

loads and will typically y straighter

offset rail, to which I mounted a Tri-

than the M193/55-grain (0.267 B/C)

jicon RMR (Ruggedized Miniature

or M855/62-grain NATO (0.304 B/C)

Reex) optic.

ammunition.
I didnt have any of Federals ex-

The Trijicon RMRs 7 MOA


amber dot never needs batteries,

cellent 69-grain SMK Gold Match on

courtesy of both its internal tritium

hand to challenge the Hornadys ac-

material and external ber-optic

curacy dominance for this test, but

array, and is a proven fave of many

from many past experiences in 1:8

of our armed forces front-line oper-

and 1:7 twist launching platforms, I

ators. This is sort of a reverse take

suspect the Federal product would

on using an optic as the primary

have printed sub-MOA for many of

sighting system on the top rail with

32

GUN WORLD | SEPT 2014

CONTACTS
Stag Arms
(860) 229-9994
StagArms.com
Dueck Defense
DueckDefense.com
www.gunworld.com

GW_1409_33 6/30/14 3:20 AM Page 33

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GW 14-09-CMMG-34-45.qxp 7/2/14 2:10 AM Page 34

BLACKOUT
STAKEOUT
The Author Puts CMMGs
New Mk4 T Rie To The
Test Against Texas Hogs
Story & Photos by Mike Dickerson

34

GUN WORLD | SEPT 2014

www.gunworld.com

GW 14-09-CMMG-34-45.qxp 7/2/14 2:10 AM Page 35

Range testing of the


CMMG Mk4 rie revealed
a strong preference for the
Barnes 110-grain TAC-TX
bullet.

hose who know me might be tempted to


suggest that Im addicted to hog hunting,
but it simply isnt true. Ive traced my family
surname, on my mothers side, to a small village
in Switzerland. Translated into English, the name
means, The place where men hunt wild boar.
Clearly, my fondness for hunting hogs is a simple
matter of genetic predisposition, and who am I to
ght some 200,000 years of natural selection?

www.gunworld.com

SEPT 2014 | GUN WORLD

35

GW 14-09-CMMG-34-45.qxp 7/2/14 2:10 AM Page 36

With a 16.1-inch barrel and collapsible


stock, the Mk4 T is handy in tight places
and chambered for the 300 ACC
Blackout cartridge, which gives you a
.30-caliber punch in a necked-up .223
case that works in existing 5.56/.223
magazines.

CMMGs Mk4 rie


comes in a multitude of
congurations and
models.

Ive hunted hogs with everything from ries and handguns to


knives, but Ive never hunted them
with an AR platform rie. Most of
my early experience was in Califor-

nia, where AR ownership was (and


is) legally challenging, and my favorite method was via the spotand-stalk approach, often requiring
Standard furniture on the
Mk4 T includes an A2 pistol
grip and an M4 buttstock
with a six-position, MIL-SPEC
receiver extension.

long shots with accurate bolt-action ries.


Things are different in my
adopted state of Texas. Hunting
hogs with AR ries is immensely
popular, and much of it is done upclose and personal, often in fairly

tion. Test rie in hand, I teamed up

looking a feeder, and it didnt take

thick cover or at close range from

with my pal Mark Ballardwho

long for the action to start once the

stands. Theres also a growing trend

founded the non-prot organiza-

feeder went off. In short order, we

to hunt them in the dark with night-

tion, Freedom Isnt Free Veteran

had no less than 40 hogs milling

vision optics and suppressed ries.

Hunts, to honor U.S. military veter-

around in front of us, and since my

ans for their serviceto hunt pigs

wife requested that I bring home

jump at the chance to test CMMGs

on a ranch in south-central Texas.

tasty versus trophy, I picked out a

new Mk4 T rie, chambered in .300

Being pressed for time, we

All of these factors led me to

Blackout, on the local pig popula36

GUN WORLD | SEPT 2014

opted to hunt from a stand over-

100-pound sow and touched off a


Barnes VOR-TX round, sending a
www.gunworld.com

GW 14-09-CMMG-34-45.CRX 39 7/8/14 4:13 AM Page 37

The basic components


of the bolt carrier group.

TACTICAL ROOTS

110-grain TAC-TX bullet into her

learning how the .300 Blackout

boiler room. Twenty minutes later, I

performed on game with tradi-

shot a 130-pound boar with the

tional bullet placement. Well get

multitude of congurations and

same heart/lung placement. It was

to that shortly, but first, here is a

models chambered in 22 LR, 5.56,

a short, but highly efficient stakeout.

rundown of the features that

and now, .300 Blackout. The choice

make the new Mk4 T rifle bad

of .300 BLK is intriguing in as much

news for hogs.

as the round is often characterized

I could easily have taken head


shots, but I was more interested in

PRETTY.
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This NEW SCCY CPX 9mm is tough, compact,
and feminine. Built for reliability with a lifetime,
no-questions-asked warranty thats unsurpassed
in the industry, the SCCY is pretty and tough.
Add to that an amazingly low price, and youre
looking at a value thats pretty tough to beat.

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866.729.7599 | WWW.SCCY.COM
www.gunworld.com

The NEW American gun


company founded on the radical
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SEPT 2014 | GUN WORLD

37

GW 14-09-CMMG-34-45.qxp 7/2/14 2:11 AM Page 38

The Mk4 T rie comes with CMMGs


RKM11 KeyMod free-oated handguard,
which provides a much more userfriendly way to mount accessories than
the non-ergonomic Picatinny rail system.

most notably, perform well with


suppressors.
While those characteristics have
certain obvious tactical advantages,
they also match up nicely with a lot
of hunting requirements, especially in
areas where shots are normally at
modest range. Since I didnt have a
selection of night-vision scopes and
The CMMG Mk4 T rie wears an
A2 compensator on a 16.1-inch
medium taper, 416 stainless
barrel with a 1:7 twist and
matte, bead-blasted nish.

suppressors on hand, I opted to test


the Mk 4 T rie the way it arrived,
adding only a scope.
The choice of components
that go into the Mk4 T rifle reflects
CMMGs desire to strike a balance
between modularity, quality and
affordability. Starting at the busi-

as a niche cartridge for niche appli-

sign goal was to create a .30-cal-

ness end, the rifle, as tested, sports

cations. That perception isnt likely

iber round for the AR platform that

a 16.1-inch medium-taper, 416

to change any time soon, outside of

used existing 5.56 magazines, pen-

stainless barrel, which has a 1:7

the handloading community, due to

etrated barriers with high-mass

twist and a matte, bead-blasted

an ongoing scarcity of .300 BLK

bullets, and delivered energy and

finish. The muzzle wears an A2

ammo on store shelves.

ballistic performance equal to or

compensator, threaded 5/8-24 for

better than the 7.62 x 39 Soviet

.300 BLK barrels.

Technically known as the .300


ACC Blackout, the cartridge has its

cartridge. It was really intended to

roots in the tactical world. The de-

perform best at short range and,

38

GUN WORLD | SEPT 2014

Surrounding the barrel is


CMMGs RKM11 KeyMod freewww.gunworld.com

GW 14-09-CMMG-34-45.CRX 39 7/3/14 11:53 PM Page 39

CCMG MK4 T 300 BLACKOUT


LOAD

AVG. MUZZLE
VELOCITY (FPS)

AVG. 100-YARD
GROUP (INCHES)

BEST 100-YARD
GROUP (INCHES)

Barnes VOR-TX 300 BLK


110-gr. TAC-TX

2316

1.36

1.12

Black Hills 300 Whisper


125-gr. OTM

2140

2.44

2.02

Black Hills 300 Whisper


220-gr. OTM

1042

2.37

1.55

Double Tap 300 BLK


110-gr TAC-TX

2310

1.19

1.05

Southwest 300 BLK


110-gr TAC-TX

2271

1.90

1.27

Southwest 300 BLK


147-gr. FMJ

1912

2.28

1.22

Note: All test groups red with wind varying 5 to 17 mph.

www.gunworld.com

SEPT 2014 | GUN WORLD

39

GW 14-09-CMMG-34-45.qxp 7/2/14 2:11 AM Page 40

oated handguard. The KeyMod

the maximum peak strength of the

change triggers on AR ries more

system is fast becoming an indus-

7075 alloy.

often than not. Doing so almost al-

The rie comes with an A2 pis-

ways cuts target group sizes in half,

because it provides a much more

tol grip and an M4 buttstock with a

or better. Judge the following accu-

user-friendly way to attach acces-

six-position, MIL-SPEC receiver ex-

racy results accordingly, as the fac-

sories without having to deal with

tension. For those who just have to

tory trigger made it difficult to judge

the old cheese grater, non-er-

have something differentor just

the ries true accuracy potential.

gonomic Picatinny rail system for

the latest and greatest components

all attachments. This rie retains a

from a favorite manufacturer

full-length Picatinny rail on top for

these are a couple of obvious

mounting optics, and I prefer that.

places where you may want to up-

Nikons P-300 BLK 2-7x32 BDC Su-

try-standard rail-mounting system

RANGE AND FIELD


For accuracy testing, I mounted

grade. Be selective if you want to

perSub scope in a rock-solid Burris

ally shines is in attaching things like

keep the weight low. As congured,

PEPR mount, which helps position

ashlight mounts, vertical grips,

the rie weighs only 6.3 pounds un-

the scope more naturally in line

laser modules, and bipods. The

loaded, and its handy in tight spots,

with your eye. The P-300 scope

handguard, made of extruded alu-

measuring just 32 inches with the

was designed for the ballistic pro-

minum, weighs 8 ounces and

stock collapsed.

les of the .300 Blackout, in both

Where the KeyMod system re-

measures 11.13 inches. It has attach-

This brings us to the one thing I

supersonic and subsonic loads, via

ment points at the 3-, 6- and 9-o-

found objectionable on this rie:

use of Nikons Spot On Ballistic

clock positions, with QD sling

the single-stage, MIL-SPECstyle

Match Technology.

positions at 3 and 9 oclock.

trigger. It had a bit of creep in it and

Used properly, this system

broke at an average pull weight of 6

helps you know which aiming

type lower, with all controls in their

pounds, 5 ounces. Thats simply too

points on the reticle to use in order

usual spots, while the M4-type

heavy for precision work. In an ideal

to be on target at various ranges. I

upper receiver is made of forged

world, all ries would come with

didnt have the time to fully test

7075-T6 aluminum. The T6 desig-

great triggers. In reality, manyper-

that system, so I simply zeroed my

natorfor you metallurgical trivia

haps even mostdo not. Of course,

chosen hunting load an inch high at

fansmeans that the aluminum

with ries at this price, many buyers

100 yards and called it good. I knew

has been subjected to a heat-treat-

purchase with the full intention of

shots were likely to be close.

ing process to achieve a tensile

swapping out the trigger. Being an

strength of 74,000 to 78,000 psi,

accuracy nut of the rst order, I

The rie uses a standard AR 15-

Apart from its ballistic match


technology, the scope offers spring-

The author found the t


of the 7075-T6 aluminum
upper to lower to be nice
and snug.

40

GUN WORLD | SEPT 2014

www.gunworld.com

GW 14-09-CMMG-34-45.qxp 7/2/14 2:11 AM Page 41

For hunting, the author


mounted Nikons P-300
BLK 2-7 x 32 BDC SuperSub
scope in a rock-solid Burris
PEPR mount.

www.gunworld.com

SEPT 2014 | GUN WORLD

41

GW 14-09-CMMG-34-45.qxp 7/2/14 2:11 AM Page 42

loaded, zero-reset turrets, multi-

mum accuracy out of a rie at the

2,400 fps out of a 16-inch barrel,

coated optics and MOA adjust-

target range. It is, as I would dis-

but the difference wasnt enough to

ments. It has a quick-focus

cover, an exceptionally good choice

worry about at the modest ranges

eyepiece, and is nitrogen-lled and

to help you get on game fastas

the cartridge is normally used at.

O-ring sealed for waterproof and

in, right-now fast. In other words,

fog-proof performance.

That 110-grain TAC-TX bullet

its a tradeoff, but one which works

caught my eye, in part, because

The reticle of the scope pre-

out very well in the eld, especially

Barnes claims full (50 cal.) expan-

sented a bit of a challenge at the

on quick-moving critters, like hogs.

sion and 20-inch-plus penetration

range. The small circle that sur-

It would work equally well on white-

at 300 yards. That sounded suspi-

rounds the crosshairs proved to be

tail deer. For an M4 platform, and

ciously like a decent hunting bul-

the perfect size for obscuring the

hunting deer-sized game at short to

leteven though I normally sling

little diamond-shaped targets I use

medium range, its just the right

heavier bullets at hogsand I in-

for zeroing ries at 100 yards. As a

size, weight and power.

tended to test their terminal per-

result, this scope may not be a


great choice for squeezing maxi-

For velocity testing, I ran a half


dozen factory loads over my Competitive Edge Dynamics M2 chrono-

SPECIFICATIONS
CMMG Mk4
T 300 BLK

formance on game once I found out


how accurately the stuff shot.
Results were mixed in that

graph and found velocities to be

area. Heavier, slower bullets did not

pretty much as expected. The one

fare as well as lighter, faster bullets.

subsonic load tested, a Black Hills

All three of the heavier bullets

.300 Whisper round using a 220-gr.

tested turned in average groups

open-tip match bullet, averaged

measuring more than 2 inches. The

1,042 fps. A Southwest Ammunition

single best group, measuring 1.05

Action: Gas-operated, semi-auto

.300 BLK load with a 147-grain FMJ

inches, was turned in by Double

Caliber: 300 Blackout, as tested

bullet clocked in at 1,912 fps. The

Taps 300 BLK load using the 110-

three hottest loads, from Barnes,

grain Barnes TAC-TX bullet. That

Mag. Capacity: Variable

Double Tap and Southwestall

load also turned in the best average

Barrel Length: 416 stainless, 16.1-inch


medium taper prole

using Barnes 110-grain TAC-TX bul-

group size of 1.19 inches. The other

letcame in a bit below the com-

two factory loads using that bullet,

monly cited velocity for that load of

from Barnes and Southwest, were

Muzzle: A2 comp., threaded


Receiver: M4-type upper,
AR15 type lower
Overall Length: 32 inches
(stock collapsed)
Weight (empty): 6.3 pounds
Sights: None, Picatinny rail for optics
Handguard: CMMG RKM11 free-oated
KeyMod
Furniture: A2 pistol grip, six-position
M4 buttstock
Finish: Black

MSRP: $1,049.95

42

GUN WORLD | SEPT 2014

Some of the ammo tested in the Mk4 T included, left to right, Barnes 110-grain TAC-TX,
Black Hills 300 Whisper 125-grain OTM, Black
Hills 300 Whisper 220-grain OTM, Double Tap
110-grain TAC-TX and Southwest 147-grain FMJ.

www.gunworld.com

GW 14-09-CMMG-34-45.qxp 7/2/14 2:11 AM Page 43

Equipped with Nikons P-300 BLK


scope, which matches the ballistic
prole of .300 BLK ammo, the author
found the Mk4 T to be a deadly setup
for dispatching wild hogs.

Find us on

Discover the
world of rearms at
your ngertips.

www.facebook.com/gunworldmagazine

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SEPT 2014 | GUN WORLD

43

GW 14-09-CMMG-34-45.qxp 7/2/14 2:11 AM Page 44

I was a little surprised that the pig


made it as far as he did, but I
learned long ago that some hogs
take a bit of time to realize theyre
supposed to be dead.
Both bullets resulted in
through-and-through wounds, with
no bullets recovered for examination. That was mildly disappointing,
but not unexpected. With a tally of
two rounds red, two good meat
hogs down and an appointment
with some Texas-style ribs on the
BBQ, the only thing I could legitimately complain about was the
Texas heat. GW

CONTACTS
Barnes Bullets
BarnesBullets.com
The author dropped these two meat hogs with one shot each using the 110-grain
TAC-TX bullet in Barnes factory ammunition.

very close behind. In fact, the average overall group size from all three

ger pull in excess of 6 pounds.


As for how the .300 BLK car-

loads using this bullet was right

tridge performed on game, a data

around an inch and a half.

sampling of two animals is far from

That will denitively get the job

denitive, but heres how it played

done in most hunting and self-de-

out. The rst shot on the 100-

fense scenarios, but I still came

pound sow, using the Barnes VOR-

away less than totally happy with

TX load with the 110-grain TAC-TX

the ries accuracy. Part of that

bullet, took out both the top of the

comes from being one of those

heart and a portion of lungs. The

guys who sells every rie he cant

sow ran 20 yards and dropped. We

make shoot sub-MOA groups. Yes,

stayed put, until about 20 minutes

thats me, guilty as charged, and

later, when another group of hogs

proud of it.

moved in. I made the same shot

On the other hand, Im pretty

placement on a 130-pound boar,

condent that groups would shrink

and was initially concerned when

some with additional rie break-in,

he showed little reaction to the shot

and Im positive it would shoot

other than to run like he just lit an

tighter groups with an upgraded

afterburner. We found him, after a

trigger installed. Ive always found it

bit of searching, about 100 yards

exceedingly tough to shoot tight

away. That bullet took out the arter-

groups with any gun that has a trig-

ies above the heart and both lungs.

44

GUN WORLD | SEPT 2014

Black Hills Ammunition


Black-Hills.com
Burris Optics
BurrisOptics.com
CMMG Firearms
CMMGInc.com
Competitive Edge Dynamics
CEDhk.com
Double Tap Ammunition
DoubleTapAmmo.net
Freedom Isnt Free Veteran Hunts
FreedomIsntFreeVeteranHunt.com
Nikon Sport Optics
NikonSportOptics.com
Southwest Ammunition
SouthwestAmmunition.com

www.gunworld.com

GW_1409_45 6/27/14 6:26 AM Page 45

With two sighting systems in one compact package, the CounterStrike


gets you on target fasterno ifs, ands, or buts.
+ Combines 1x30mm red dot sight with visible laser aiming device
+ User-selectable red/green 4-MOA dot reticle with 11 intensity
settings (including night vision)
+ Integrated Picatinny rail mount is fast and repeatable
+ Flip-back lens covers included
+ 100% waterproof, fog proof, and shockproof
+ Redeld No Excuses Warranty

+ Integrated visible laser aiming device allows engagement from almost any position.
Features separate on/o controls.

COUNTERSTRIKE

RED DOT RETICLE

GREEN DOT RETICLE

REDFIELD.COM
2014 Redeld, A Brand of Leupold & Stevens, Inc.

GW 14-09-VIEW-46-53 7/2/14 6:01 AM Page 46

IMPRESSIVE
VIEW
Story & Photos by Dr. Martin D. Topper

Taurus Reinvents The Belly


Gun With A .38 Special
See-Through Snubbie

The clear polymer side


plate on the Taurus View
allows the owner to see if
the lockworks are clean
and functioning properly.

46

GUN WORLD | SEPT 2014

www.gunworld.com

GW 14-09-VIEW-46-53.CRX 47,52 7/3/14 11:56 PM Page 47

he View may not be entirely original, but it


is unique in how it combines the best in
traditional snubnose revolver design with
the latest technology. Like many small-frame
.38 Special snubbies, the View is a short-barreled, aluminum-framed, DAO, ve-shot revolver
with a small grip. However, the View differs from
other .38 snubs in a number of important ways.
First, it has a very short barrel. Most
snubnose .38s have a 1.875- to 2.5-inch barrel.
The View's barrel is an ultra-short 1.41 inches.
Carried in a pocket or an inside-the-waistband
holster, the view's short barrel is less likely to
print through your clothes or poke you.

www.gunworld.com

SEPT 2014 | GUN WORLD

47

GW 14-09-VIEW-46-53 7/2/14 6:01 AM Page 48

The View's ve-shot


cylinder, frame and grips
leave ample room for the
use of speedloaders.
Making quick reloads is
no problem, despite the
Views small size.

rection before pulling the trigger.


Because of these weight-saving features, the View weighs just 9
ounces unloaded, making it the
lightest medium-bore concealedcarry handgun currently available
from a major manufacturer. Its
even lighter than a couple of popular polymer-framed .380s, and this
makes it very easy to carry in a holster or a pocket.

EVALUATION
When I picked the revolver up
at the Florida Gun Exchange, I was
immediately impressed by its short
grip and barrel. The next thing I nocylinder. But the View takes tita-

ticed was the Views color scheme,

smaller than the boot grips found

nium usage a step further by having

which combines a matte silver alu-

on other snubbies. Like the barrel,

a titanium barrel shroud.

minum frame, silver-polished trig-

Second, the grip is much

it's designed to be comfortable to

The nal weight-saving feature

ger, gold-polished hammer and

carry and to resist the tendency of

is the frame's clear polymer side-

matte black stocks, matte gray tita-

most grips to print.

plate. In addition to reducing

nium cylinder and barrel shroud. All

weight, this clear plate also allows

parts were well nished, and the

View's extremely low weight. Like

the owner to see when it's time to

overall effect was striking.

other lightweight handguns, the

clean the lockworks and watch the

View has an aircraft-quality alu-

action cycle when the trigger is

workbench indicated that the View

minum frame and a titanium alloy

pulled. Watching the lockworks can

was well made. This revolver has a

be fun, but check twice that the gun

three-point lock-up that employs a

is empty and pointed in a safe di-

detent in the top of the crane to

A third important feature is the

SPECIFICATIONS

A mechanical check at the

TAURUS VIEW
Model: 85 VTA
Barrel: l.41 inches
Frame: Aluminum small frame
Stock: Polymer
Finish: Silver and gray
Length: 5.67 inches
Weight: 9 ounces
Caliber: .38 Special
Capacity: Five
Sights: Fixed
MSRP: $599
The detent on the cylinder crane provides a tight lock-up for the front of the Views cylinder.

48

GUN WORLD | SEPT 2014

www.gunworld.com

GW 14-09-VIEW-46-53 7/2/14 6:01 AM Page 49

Taurus View is an innovative,


ve-shot .38 cal. snubnose that only
weighs 9 ounces. Its construction
cuts weight by combining space-age
materials like titanium, aircraft-grade
aluminum and polymers.

The nal weightsaving feature is the


frames clear polymer
sideplate.

lock the front of the cylinder in

cylinder-to-barrel gap, I could not

higher in the frame than on some

place, a spring-loaded center pin in

t a standard thickness gauge be-

others. During live re tests, this dif-

the extractor to lock the rear and a

tween the cylinder and barrel. There

ference in dimensions had no effect

cylinder stop to prevent rotation

was just not enough room between

on the functioning of the gun.

during ignition.

the top of the gas seal on the crane

This system worked well be-

and the bottom of the frames top-

SHOTS FIRED

cause the cylinder locked up in the

strap. A comparison to other snub-

frame without signicant backward

nose revolvers revealed that the

for velocity, bullet energy, reliability

and forward or side-to-side play.

cylinder of the View is set just a bit

and tactical accuracy at the Volusia

The View was live-re tested

Crane to frame t was very good,


with no gap between the crane and
the frame.
Functioning was also very
good. Double-checking to ensure
the View was unloaded, I pointed it
in a safe direction and checked the
timing. Each chamber locked in
place before the hammer fell. Trigger pull was consistent at 10.5
pounds for all ve chambers. The
pull was long and smooth and the
trigger did not reset until the trigger
was fully forward. Therefore, when

The functional polymer boot


grips on the View are checkered
to promote a sure grip and are
decorated with the Taurus logo.

ring the View, one must allow the


trigger to come fully forward before
attempting to pull the trigger again.
When attempting to check the
www.gunworld.com

SEPT 2014 | GUN WORLD

49

GW 14-09-VIEW-46-53 7/2/14 6:02 AM Page 50

The View placed quick, accurate shots on target at CQB distances.

County Gun and Hunt Club. Be-

nition produced the highest energy,

picted a single individual with a gun

cause it weighs only 9 oz. and has a

generating 157 ft-lbs. As you can

and the other target was a compos-

very small grip, no +P ammunition

see from the attached chart, the

ite of two armed assailants, one

was used. Recoil would simply have

performance level of .38 Special

standing behind the other. The tar-

been too punishing. Four .38 Spl.

ammunition red in the View was

get with the single assailant was

loads, graciously supplied by their

very similar to the performance of

engaged with a center chest shot.

manufacturers, were used for the

the old .38 S&W/.38 Colt New Po-

The target depicting two assailants

test. They were: Black Hill's 148-

lice cartridges red from a 4-inch

grain WC, Hornady's 90-grain Lite

revolver. Recoil was also similar to

load with the FTX bullet, HPR's

my old Colt Police Positive revolver

158-grain HP with Hornady's XTP

chambered for .38 Colt New Police.

bullet, and Winchester's new 130-

Complete velocity and energy

grain Defend ammunition, which

gures are included in the attached

features a bonded bullet.

table.

I also patterned a CCI snake load


at 10 feet, since the ultra-light View is
easy-carrying in snake country.
Muzzle velocity and muzzle en-

UP CLOSE AND PERSONAL


The View is designed for personal defense at close quarters;

ergy levels produced from the

therefore, it was evaluated for tac-

View's short 1.41-inch barrel were

tical accuracy by shooting two dif-

comparable to those of standard

ferent close-range drills. Its small

pressure .38 Special ammo red in

grips and DAO trigger pull would

snubnose revolvers that have 2- to

not have produced meaningful re-

2.5-inch barrels. The fastest load

sults from bench testing. With a

was Hornady's 90 gr. FTX Lite load.

belly gun, it's how you shoot it

It's average velocity of 839 fps pro-

under stress at close range that's

duced 140 ft-lbs of muzzle energy.

important.

Fired into a 3-gallon water jug, this

The rst drill involved engaging

bullet expanded to .44 inches. Win-

three hostiles depicted on two tar-

chester's 130-grain Defend ammu-

gets at ve yards. One target de-

50

GUN WORLD | SEPT 2014

www.gunworld.com

GW 14-09-VIEW-46-53 7/2/14 6:02 AM Page 51

TEST PERFORMANCE
LOAD NAME

VELOCITY

MUZZLE ENERGY

Black Hills 148-gr. WC

603 fps.

120 ft-lbs.

Hornady 90-gr. FTX

839 fps.

140 ft-lbs.

HPR 158-gr. XTP

627 fps.

138 ft-lbs.

Winchester 130-gr.
Defend HP

737 fps.

157 ft-lbs.

Velocity was the average of ve shots measured 15 feet from the


muzzle with a PACT 1XP chronograph.

required a body shot on the ex-

were more difficult. The small grips

posed assailant and a head shot on

and DAO action made it difficult to

the second armed assailant who

make a quick 5-yard head shot

was standing behind him.

every time. Thats because the size

At this distance, body shots


were no problem, but head shots

and shape of the grip made this revolver point high. I compensated by

BEALR
A
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AC
A GOT.
C
BL
I T
T
C
TA JUS
TERNG
H
G
I
I
BR ODUC
L
A
TIC
.
INTTR
S
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AC
LIGH

Recoil of the View is pronounced,


but tolerable, when standard-pressure
.38 Spl. loads are used. The author did
not use +P loads because of the View's
reduced weight and small grips.

www.gunworld.com

BROWNING.COM

SEPT 2014 | GUN WORLD

51

GW 14-09-VIEW-46-53.CRX 47,52 7/3/14 11:57 PM Page 52

ejected. In addition, using standard


pressure ammunition helps reduce
the chance of a casing over-expanding and sticking in its chamber.

FINAL THOUGHTS
The View proved to be reliable
and handled quite well for a .38
that only weighs 9 oz. Like other
snubnose revolvers, it is designed
for close-range encounters, and it
performed well in drills at distances
of up to 5 yards. Overall, the View
would be a good choice for deep
concealment in urban areas, and for
Author used a rm, two-hand
grip when shooting the View.

carry while hiking in areas where


poisonous snakes are common. GW

leading to the house. Distance to


the target was about 3 yards. This
target was quickly dealt with by a

CONTACT

shot to the center of the chest.


The second target depicted
two hostiles who were blocking the

Black Hills Ammunition


(605) 348-5150

walkway leading to the front door.


One of these men was standing behind the other and both were
Hornadys .38 caliber, 90-grain FTX bullet
expanded to .44 inches. Thats excellent
performance from a 1.41-inch barrel.

armed. The distance was 5 yards.


Both targets were successfully engaged, but given the distance to the

holding low and using a very rm

targets, my strategy involved taking

two-hand grip. I would like to see

one shot at the fully exposed as-

the View offered with a set of

sailant and saving the rest of my

slightly oversize soft polymer laser

shots to make sure I hit the head

grips. Such a grip would help bring

shot on target two. As with all

out this revolvers full potential.

small-capacity handguns, one has

The second drill also involved


engaging three targets. The drill
simulated a hostage rescue situa-

to carefully manage ammunition


when using this ve-shot revolver.
Fortunately, the View can be re-

tion in which three men were hold-

loaded using a speedloader. How-

ing a family member in a house. The

ever, like most snubnose revolvers,

task was to take down the three

this new gun from Taurus has a

targets who were positioned to pre-

short ejector rod that does not push

vent me from entering the house.

the cartridges completely clear of

The rst target simulated a lookout

the cylinder. Therefore, the rod

in a window. It had to be engaged

needs to be rmly depressed to

before a entering a narrow walkway

help ensure all of the brass is

52

GUN WORLD | SEPT 2014

CCI Ammunition
(800) 379-1732
Florida Gun Exchange
(386) 304-9499
FloridaGunExchange.com
Hornady Ammunition
(800) 338-3220
Hornady.com
HPR Ammunition
(928) 468-0223
HPRAmmo.com
Volusia County Gun and Hunt Club
(386) 717-1394
VolusiaCountyGunAndHuntClub.com
Winchester Ammunition
(800) 356-2666
Winchester.com

www.gunworld.com

GW_1409_53 6/27/14 6:29 AM Page 53

GW 14-09-AMERICAN-54-61.qxp 7/2/14 3:26 AM Page 54

At the range, the author


sighted the rie in using both
the scope and the laser. At the
modest ranges required for
hunting black bear over bait, it
was easy to switch between
the two sighting systems, and
having two optics on the same
rie inspired condence.

54

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GW 14-09-AMERICAN-54-61.qxp 7/2/14 3:26 AM Page 55

RED, WHITE,
BLUE & BEAR
Ruger, Redeld, Crimson Trace And
Warne Combine On An All-American
Hunting Package
Story & Photos by Brad Fitzpatrick

he current trend toward building affordable, accurate,


feature-loaded bolt action ries has produced some
outstanding products over the last decade, and at the
top of that list is Rugers budget-priced American Rie. Gone
are the days when shooters will accept creepy triggers and
so-so accuracy, even in ries costing under $500.

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GW 14-09-AMERICAN-54-61.qxp 7/2/14 3:26 AM Page 56

Rugers lightweight, inexpensive American Rie with a Redeld scope and Crimson Trace Laser mounted on a custom Warne bracket
is a fantastic hunting rig that is built completely in the United States. Add to that a few boxes of Federal Premium Fusion ammunition
and youre ready to hunt black bears in dense cover.

Throughout the year, Ruger


has released variants of its American rifle lineup, including an AllWeather version in regular and
compact lengths as well as a Predator model with a heavy barrel and
a combo package that comes with
a mounted and bore-sighted Redfield Revolution riflescope. For the
hunter or shooter who wants an
affordable rifle capable of subMOA groups, this lineup has plenty
to offer.
Each American rie shares the
same receiver, a one-piece unit with
a small ejection port machined out
of a single piece of steel. The design
is sturdy and robust, which helps
improve accuracy, and the oversized bolt (same diameter as the
lugs) runs smoothly through the action with very little slop and play
compared to other bolt designs.
The bolt features three locking
lugs, which provide a secure lockup
and allow the American to have a
short (70 degree) bolt lift for faster
56

GUN WORLD | SEPT 2014

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GW 14-09-AMERICAN-54-61.qxp 7/2/14 3:26 AM Page 57

follow-up shots and a reduced risk

the market, its also light enough for

of bashing your fingers against the

all-day carry.

scope as you reload. The 22-inch


hammer-forged barrel has a re-

MOVING PARTS

cessed crown to protect rifling, and

The last decade has seen a

Rugers Power Bedding system en-

push toward lighter, crisper, ad-

sures that the receiver is firmly se-

justable triggers, and the American

cured and that the barrel is

Rifles Marksman trigger is out-

allowed to float freely for maxi-

standing. It incorporates a center

mum accuracy.

blade design, and when the blade

The stock is lightweight and

is pulled back, the trigger break is

features nger grooves that offer a

light and clean. Its factory-ad-

secure grip on the rie without look-

justable, between 3 and 5 pounds,

ing avant-garde or extreme, and the

and the rifle I tested broke at 3.5

soft recoil pad does a good job ab-

pounds from the factory. Its a

sorbing recoil. At six and a quarter

great aid in accuracy and makes it

pounds as tested, the ries push

easy to wring tight groups out of

was comfortable and manageable

the American.

even with full-power .30-06 loads.

The plastic magazine is rotary

Not only is the American Rie one

and flush-fit, light and easy to pop

of the most affordable bolt guns on

in and out of the rifle. Initially, I


had some feeding issues, but
when I swapped in a different
mag, the feeding problems ceased
altogether.

LASER HUNTING
Lasers are not a traditional
sighting system for bolt-action ries, but the team at Warne has
developed a lightweight, rugged
mounting bracket for the Crimson
Trace laser that ts on the front of
a ries Picatinny top rail. The system doesnt interfere with a standard scope, so both can be
mounted simultaneously.
Lasers offer a rapid sighting
system and, on pistols, dont require the shooter to shift focus between the front sight and target.
On hunting ries, they are particularly advantageous in low or dim
light when hunting dark animals
like bears.
Another bonus is that a laser
allows you to instantly check the
zero of your scope when you climb
in the stand. If the laser and scope
crosshairs intersect at the distance they were zeroed then the
scope and the laser are still in line.
The laser also offers a useful
backup in the unlikely (but still
possible) event that your scope
fails or fogs.

The American Ries tangBlack bears are tough


animals, and even at close
range shot placement must
be good. Lasers are a great
aid for hunting bears over
bait in the dense forests,
where their dark hides can be
difficult to see with standard
crosshairs.

mounted two-position safety is

traveling to and from the range or

easy to nd and manipulate with-

stand. Ruger provides bases with

out looking down at the gun. A

the rie, which work well and are

large, cocking indicator on the tang

easy to secure to the receiver.

allows for instant feedback regard-

The stainless, All-Weather

ing the ries status, and it was easy

model adds a level of resistance to

to drop the magazine, draw the bolt

the elements not found on other

backward and unload the rie while

versions of the American. That was

The receiver of the American Rie is of sturdy construction and features a small
ejection port for maximum rigidity and improved accuracy. The new stainless nish is
also impervious to the elements.

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57

GW 14-09-AMERICAN-54-61.qxp 7/2/14 3:26 AM Page 58

The Marksman trigger is


user adjustable from 3 to 5
pounds and provides a
crisp, clean break. It utilizes
a bladed design and is a
great aid in making
accurate shots.

good for this particular test be-

Rie Ive tested, accuracy was su-

was the 3-9x40 version with a 4-

cause the rie was exposed to rain,

perb. This is a genuine sub-MOA

Plex reticle, the perfect combina-

mud, and rough handling in bear

rie, capable of keeping groups

tion for hunting bear in low light.

camp and survived the ordeal with-

under an inch with factory ammuni-

out any issues.

tion. Ruger doesnt promise that

scopes with a variety of magnica-

level of accuracy, but I have yet to

tion, objective diameter, and reticle

see one of these ries that wouldnt

options, and whatever your game

group under an inch at 100 yards

theres likely a scope that ts your

with quality factory ammunition.

rie and your needs. Like the Ameri-

As with every other American

SPECIFICATIONS
RUGER AMERICAN
RIFLE ALL-WEATHER
Action: Bolt-action centerre
Caliber: .22-250, .223, .243, .270,
7mm-08, .308, .30-06 (tested)
Finish: Stainless
Stock: Synthetic

There are various Revolution

can Rie, the Redeld is robust and

ALL-AMERICAN OPTICS
For my Alberta bear hunt, I

durable, able to withstand the elements without issue. Its hard to be-

mounted a Redeld Revolution

lieve that these scopes retail under

scope on a Picatinny rail atop the

$300 ($249.99 as tested)theyre

rie. Redelds rebirth has been a

a great bargain.

boon to hunters, and these Ameri-

For most hunters, a good scope

can-built riescopes offer good

and rie combination is just the

light transmission and excellent

ticket for hunting big game. But for

consistency from a budget-priced

this hunt, the folks at Warne and

optic. The Revolution scope I tested

Crimson Trace teamed up to offer

Capacity: Four (as tested)


Barrel: 22 inches, hammer-forged
Sights: None (drilled and tapped,
bases provided)

The American Rie


has a two-position
safety mounted on the
tang of the rie. At the
rear of the bolt, a large
cocking indicator helps
identify whether the rie
is cocked or not by visual inspection or touch.

Weight: 6.25 pounds (as tested)


Overall Length: 42.50 inches
MSRP: $529
58

GUN WORLD | SEPT 2014

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GW 14-09-AMERICAN-54-61 7/2/14 6:34 AM Page 59

The laser mounts to the


side of the rail and remains
out of the way of the scope. It
proved to be a very successful
setup for hunting Alberta
bears, and the laser was a
major benet when shooting
dark animals in low light.
Caution: Lasers arent legal in
every state and province, but
where you can hunt with
them, they make sense.

something more. The objective was


to mount an auxiliary laser sight on
the rie, something commonplace
on AR-platform guns but a relatively new concept in the realm of
bolt-action ries.
The challenge was to mount a
laser on a rie not specically designed for one and, as such, lacked
the required accessory rails found
on pistols and AR ries. But the engineers at Warne quickly developed
an ingenious method to secure the
laser to the American Rie without

LIFE CAN BE LOUD...BUT SOMETIMES,

SILENCE IS GOLDEN!

making it prone to damage while


being pulled through the thickets of
northern Alberta.
That solution was a horizontal
bracket that, by turning a screw,
could be secured into the Picatinny
rail just ahead of the scope. This
provided a solid and steady platform for the Crimson Trace Railmaster, and the whole system was
lightweight, streamlined, and
durable. With the Railmaster
mounted on the side bracket, it was
simply a matter of aligning the
scope and the laser for the same
point of aim.
With the laser mounted and
sighted in at 40 yards, the bullets
point of impact for the laser and
scope was within an inch out to a
tested range of 72 yards. That
meant that from 15 yards to almost
www.gunworld.com

Introducing the new incredibly quiet Umarex


Fusion CO2 powered pellet rie, featuring the
SilencAir ve-chamber noise dampening system.
With its .177 caliber precision accuracy and
virtual silence, the Umarex Fusion is a one-of-akind airgun. Zero In on the Fusion at
UmarexUSA.com/Fusion

GW 14-09-AMERICAN-54-61.CRX 61 7/9/14 12:08 AM Page 60

Red Willow Outtters offers fantastic spring and fall bear hunts as well as trips for other game, including some of the largest whitetail
deer found anywhere. Here, the author (left) and Kent Thomas of Crimson Trace pose with two of their bears taken on the hunt.

75 yards, it was possible to use the

for deep, consistent penetration,

up the slack in the American Ries

laser or the scope interchangeably

the type of performance thats es-

trigger and red, the bullet striking

while hunting.

sential when hunting big bears.

where the laser had indicated and

In the dense spruce and poplar

IN BEAR CAMP

sending the bear into a rapid spin

thickets around Red Willows camp,

before it departed down the same

shots would be close, and when I

well-used game trail on which it had

to Grand Prairie, Alberta to hunt

turned on the laser and lined up the

arrived.

bear with fellow outdoor writer

scope, I found just what I was hop-

Aaron Carter and the team from

ing for; the red dot and the

bruin, so I slipped down from the

Crimson Trace. Our base of opera-

crosshairs overlapped at 40 yards.

tree and moved through the towering

tions was Todd Loewens Red Wil-

One of the advantages to having an

spruce along the hard-packed trail.

low Outtters, which operates in

auxiliary laser system is the ability

With the red beam bouncing ahead

some of Albertas greatest hunting

to instantly verify the accuracy of

of me, I found the bear standing 50

areas near the Smoky and Peace

both the scope and the laser.

yards from the stand. It probably

To eld test the rie, I headed

Rivers. Todds area allows hunters

Lasers arent legal for hunting

I didnt want to risk losing the

wouldnt have gone any further, but I


delivered a second shot and an-

to harvest two bears, and since that

in every state, and it is important

region has consistently produced

to make sure youre staying within

some of the largest bruins in Al-

the boundaries of the law when

RED WILLOW OUTFITTERS

berta, we knew there was a possi-

you mount one and prepare to

bility of connecting with a brute.

hunt. Where they are legal, how-

Todd Loewens Red Willow


Outtters offer hunts in some of
Albertas most game-rich areas.
The area is perhaps best known for
big black bears, and is home to
some of the largest whitetails in
North America.
The area is also home to some
outstanding mule deer, and its possible to double up on whitetails and
muleys at Red Willow. Elk and
moose are also abundant, and the
prices in Alberta are competitive
with other areas in North America.
Visit RedWillowOuttters.com.

The rst step in the process

ever, lasers offer a low-light alter-

was to double-check the zero of our

native and allow for rapid target

American Ries to ensure the long

acquisition.

trip to Alberta and the subsequent

My rst bear of the week came

knocks, blows, and bangs delivered

in and began feeding at the bait not

to our bags by the airlines hadnt

long after I climbed on stand on the

changed the point of impact of our

second day of the hunt. With a

ries. For the hunt, we were using

touch of the laser activation pad, a

Federal Fusion 165 grain ammuni-

red beam began bouncing on the

tion, which features a lead core and

bears black shoulder. When the

copper jacket that wont separate

beam settled over the vitals, I took

60

GUN WORLD | SEPT 2014

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GW 14-09-AMERICAN-54-61.CRX 61 7/4/14 12:00 AM Page 61

chored the bruin for good.

INTRODUCING THE

On the nal night of the hunt,

LAR-8 X-1 RIFLE

the last few minutes of shooting

Combining custom features and all-new


components with RRAs years of experience
and dedication to making the best ries
available, the RRA X-Series.

light dragged on and the woods


began to darken, I heard the sound
of a large animal approaching from
my right. The bear slipped out of
the woods and stood at the edge of
the open area, moving cautiously
out of the trees and offering only
one angle for a shot.
I touched the laser activation
pad and immediately saw the red
beam bouncing over the earth. With
only minutes to spare before the
close of the hunt, I centered the
laser on the bears vitals and
pressed the trigger. The American
Rie roared and the bruin turned to

LAR-8 X-1 RIFLE X308A1750T

run, but before I could work the bolt,

TAN WITH OPERATOR A2 STOCK

MSRP: $1850*

it went down and didnt move. The


All-American bear rie had accounted for another Alberta bear,
and my second tag was lled.

FINAL WORDS

RRA HUNTER
MUZZLE BRAKE

Rugers All-Weather American


Rie with Redelds Revolution
scope, the Crimson Trace Railmaster laser and Federals Fusion ammunition proved to be an ideal
set-up for bears. By the time wed
nished the hunt, I could imagine a
number of uses for that rie, from
whitetails to hogs and even moun-

* Prices are subject to change.


Optics and scope mount not included.

ROCKRIVERARMS.COM

tain hunting. Lasers arent traditionally considered an accessory to


bolt-action ries, but as my Canadian hunt proved, they work extremely well. GW

CONTACT
Sturm, Ruger & Co.
(603) 865-2442
Ruger.com

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61

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GW_1409_63 6/27/14 6:35 AM Page 63

GW 14-09-HUNTER-64-69.qxp 7/2/14 3:38 AM Page 64

TODAYS
HUNTER

The AR platform
ries sets up very well
for hunting coyotes.

64

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A SPORTING

CHANCE
Despite Some Early Challenges, The
AR Has Earned A Place On The Hunt
Story & Photos by Thomas C. Taborb

hen the trend of hunting with sporting


ries rst began to take hold, I was
more than a bit reluctant to accept it.
While I didnt begrudge anyone using an AR for
any legal purpose, I cherished the look of a
highly gured walnut stock and a nice bluing job.
When squeezing the trigger, I have grown to like
the feel of wood against my cheek. Obviously,
those characteristics are lacking in most modern
ries and so I resisted the urge to make a place
for them in my own hunting and shooting activities largely for those reasons.

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TODAYS HUNTER
prairie dogs, ground squirrels, foxes

to place a higher emphasis on the

with ARs, my viewpoint began to

and coyotes, but for deer-sized

accuracy of their products. That,

change. While I still dont believe

game, most hunters feel it lacks se-

coupled with adding an abundance

that AR platform ries will ever re-

rious consideration. In many juris-

of AR chamberings (including a

place the more traditional style

dictions, deer hunting laws prohibit

wide range of both production and

rearms, I have learned that the

.22 caliber cartridges and center-

wildcats cartridges), moved the fa-

modern rie clearly has a place in a

res such as the .223.

vorability of the modern rie for-

However, after a few trips aeld

variety of hunting situations, including many of my own.

The second factor was that the


AR was originally designed to be a
short- to moderate-range rearm.

EARLY CHALLENGES

ward tremendously, particularly


within the hunting community.
Today, one of the best AR deer

Like the 1911 .45-caliber pistol, its

hunting calibers is the very popular

Outside of my own personal

capability to quickly lay down a bar-

.308 Winchester. A few years ago, I

bias, I believe that the AR as a vi-

rage of gunre and an ability to eas-

used an AR-10 chambered in .308

able hunting choice was initially

ily be repaired in the eld took

for some wild boar hunting and

held back to a degree by two major

considerable precedence over an

some culling of water buffalo in

factors. First was the caliber. At the

ultimate degree of shooting accu-

Australia. While I normally would

onset, the vast majority of the ARs

racy at longer range.

consider the .308 to be on the light

hitting the market were chambered

But as shooters began to look

side for large tenacity critters like

in 5.56mm, or its civilian counter-

to the AR as a viable alternative to

buffalo, in this particular case it

part, the .223 Remington, and these

traditional ries, things began to

worked out very well.

calibers have limitations when it

change in the area of accuracy and

comes to hunting.

caliber choice. Manufacturers, from

son .308 chambered AR-10 for

rearms production people to the

whitetails and hogs last year and

aftermarket barrel makers, began

found it also performed excellent in

Sure, the little .22 caliber bullet


worked great for such critters as

I also used a Smith and Wes-

A good solid rest, an AR-15, plenty of ammunition and a well populated prairie dog townwhat more could any varmint hunter ask for?

66

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GW 14-09-HUNTER-64-69 7/2/14 6:35 AM Page 67

UNSURPASSED
CAPACITY
CZ P-09

With 19+1 in its ush tting


magazine, the P -09 cant be beat
when it comes to 9mm service pistols.

Fellow writer and editor, Mark Chestnut, of NRA 1st Freedom took this excellent
whitetail with an S&W Model 10 chambered in .308 Winchester.

that setting as well. I frequently use

installed, which makes mounting

an AR-15, chambered in the more

all types of optics easy. It can be

traditionally .223 caliber, for both

used to accommodate various

prairie dogs and coyotes.

types of optics, lasers, or even a


light source for night shooting. I

AN AR EVOLUTION

personally like the benets asso-

Today there is no shortage of

ciated with quick, detachable-

AR-styled rearms from which to

style rings, like the QRW made

select. Many are custom tailored

by Leupold. These are a great

MAIN FEATURES

and designed to match a specic


applications, including hunting versions. You can opt to select one of
these already custom ries, or you
can purchase a basic AR and swap
out the parts that best suit your
particular application.
The modular AR design makes
part swapping easy, and in most
cases doesnt require the assistance of a gunsmith. Many companies offer high quality, very accurate
replacement barrels, highly superior
triggers, improved upper and lower
units and other accessories allowing you to achieve the exact results
needed for your particular hunting
needs.
Most ARs come factory-

AR ORIGINS
The AR-15 is a magazine fed,
air-cooled rie design with a rotating-locking bolt actuated by
direct-impingement gas or a
long/short-stroke piston operation. Based on the 7.62mm AR10, the AR-15 is a lighter rie
originally intended for the
smaller 5.56/.223 cartridge.
Although many believe AR
is short for Assault Rie, the
letters actually stand for ArmaLight Rie, after the company
that developed and built it in
1957. In 1959, due to nancial difculties, ArmaLight sold the
manufacturing rights to both the
AR-10 and AR-15 to Colt. Colt
made a few modications to the
design that resulted in the M16.

t*OUFSDIBOHFBCMFCBDLTUSBQT
t$POWFSUJCMF TBGFUZPSEFDPDLFS
t0NFHBUSJHHFSTZTUFN
t1PMZNFSGSBNFXJUI1JDBUJOOZSBJM
t  NN  48
t5XPNBHB[JOFT
tZFBSXBSSBOUZ

1305&$5t)6/5t$0.1&5&

www.cz-usa.com

equipped with a Picatinny-style rail


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GW 14-09-HUNTER-64-69.CRX 66,68 7/4/14 12:02 AM Page 68

TODAYS HUNTER
Of course, I wont be selling my
traditional, walnut-stocked hunting
ries in the near future and replacing them with ARs, nor do I see
most other hunters doing so. With a
growing number of options for high
quality aftermarket accessories and
a huge selection of calibers to
choose from, the popularity of
these ries will continue soaring in
the future. I would encourage anyone that hasnt had an opportunity
to hunt with one to give ARs a
sporting chance. GW

An AR is often the best choice when hunting feral hogs.

choice for AR applications and per-

ground squirrels. Having a high ca-

mit the shooter to swap out optics

pacity magazine or two loaded and

by simply turning a couple of levers.

ready to go when needed helps to

For long-range shooting, I frequently prefer a high magnication


variable scope, but for closer work, I

This Smith &


Wesson AR-10
chambered in .308
Winchester is a ne
example of the new
era modern ries
specically built to
conform to a hunters
needs. (Smith &
Wesson)

ensure no disruption of your shooting action.


The more traditional AR stocks

sometimes like one of the 1x dot-

are typically adjustable for length,

style sights, or a low-power scope.

which makes it a great training aid

When equipped with quick release

for youngsters or anyone with

mounts, I can swap them out with-

shorter arms. And, because ARs are

out the need of rechecking the

typically lightweight, fast-handling

point of bullet impact. Or, you can

rearms, these additional assets

use those same mounts to remove

make them a great choice when

the optics completely, then rely on

hunting in close-quarters situa-

the built-in iron sights.

tions.

Even though in some jurisdictions there are restrictions on the


use of high capacity magazines, the

RELUCTANT RIGHTS

standard AR magazine typically

by some individuals to accept a

holds 30 rounds. There are, how-

modern rie for hunting. Ive en-

ever, a wide variety of aftermarket

countered it myself in the eld on a

magazines choices, including those

few occasions. Those individuals

holding 5, 10, 20, 30, 40, 60, 90 and

certainly have a right to their own

even a big 100 rounder. This in itself

opinion, but when viewed with an

provides a great deal of exibility,

open mind, the AR platform ries

particularly when used for high vol-

clearly offer advantages in many

ume targets like prairie dogs and

hunting situations.

68

GUN WORLD | SEPT 2014

CONTACTS

There will always be reluctance

Smith & Wesson


(800) 331-0852
Smith-Wesson.com
Leupold & Stevens, Inc.
(800) Leupold
Leupold.com
Ruger.com
www.gunworld.com

GW_1409_69 6/27/14 6:37 AM Page 69

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GW 14-09-RELOAD-70-75.qxp 7/2/14 3:48 AM Page 70

RELOAD

NOW ON THE MENU


Hodgdons CFE Pistol: A Versatile
New Handgun Powder
Story & Photos by James E. House

As the name implies, the CFE


Pistol is suitable for loading
handgun ammunition, such as
the 9mm .40 S&W, and .45 Auto.

70

GUN WORLD | SEPT 2014

www.gunworld.com

GW 14-09-RELOAD-70-75.qxp 7/2/14 3:48 AM Page 71

The CFE Pistol


consists of granules
of many shapes,
including attened
spheres.

oing to a favorite restaurant and


nding a new special on the menu
can be excitingespecially if its
delicious, and doesnt give you indigestion.
I had that same feeling a couple of years
ago when Hodgdons new CFE 223 hit the
market. And now, Hodgdon has provided
handgun shooters with a special new item
on the reloading menu: CFE Pistol.

www.gunworld.com

SEPT 2014 | GUN WORLD

71

GW 14-09-RELOAD-70-75 7/8/14 4:14 AM Page 72

RELOAD

Loads assembled for the .40 S&W utilized (left to right) 150-grain Nosler HP, 155-grain Hornady XTP, 155-grain Berry RNHB, 165-grain
Rainier HP, and 180-grain Berry HP bullets.

popular calibers in terms of reload-

autoloader calibers, as well as sev-

that makes it suitable for use in cal-

ing die sales are .223 Remington,

eral of the most popular revolver

ibers such as the .223 Remington,

.30-06 Springeld, .45 Auto, .308

calibers in another study.

.308 Winchester, and many other

Winchester, and 9mm Luger. There-

mid-sized cases. In a similar way,

fore, the logical handgun calibers to

used a 9mm FNH X9, .40 S&W

the CFE Pistol has a burning rate

test rst are two of those listed in

SigSauer P2022, and .45 Auto

comparable to Hodgdon HS-6,

the top ve and the .40 S&W, which

Ruger P345. Barrel lengths for

Winchester AutoComp, and Accu-

is also immensely popular.

these guns are nominally 4 inches

The CFE 223 has a burning rate

rate No. 5.
The result is that it is an excel-

There can be little doubt that


those three calibers are the most

For testing the loads prepared, I

or very close to that length.


Winchester cases trimmed to

lent selection for use in a consider-

reloaded ones for use in autoload-

the appropriate length were used in

able number of handgun cartridges.

ers. After doing some testing with

all three calibers. Both the 9mm

With both powders, the letters CFE

those, my plan is to include other

Luger and .40 S&W use small pistol

stand for Copper Fouling Eraser,


which means they reduce copper
deposits in bores. That is good
news because a lot of shooters of
necessity re a large number of
shots between cleanings.

As a result of having a
medium burning rate,
CFE Pistol is suitable for
calibers from the .380
Auto to the .45 Colt.

Because the CFE Pistol is a recent introduction, the only source of


data is Hodgdon, either from the
website or the latest reloading
manual. That means that many
combinations of components and
calibers have never been evaluated,
and it will be some time before
loading manuals are revised to include data for CFE Pistol. Consequently, I undertook this project to
get some rsthand data.
RCBS has stated the ve most
72

GUN WORLD | SEPT 2014

www.gunworld.com

GW 14-09-RELOAD-70-75.qxp 7/2/14 3:48 AM Page 73

My plan was to gain experience with the CFE Pistol by using it in


loading the most popular calibers

LOAD DETAILS AND RESULTS OBTAINED USING HODGDONS CFE PISTOL

Caliber Bullet

Load 1

Load 2

Case

Length

Primer

O.L., in.

Gr. Vel.

Gr. Vel.

9mm

90 gr Hdy. XTP

Win.

0.746

Win. SP

1.035

5.5 1176

5.9 1288

9mm

115 gr Rem. FMJ

Win.

0.746

Win. SP

1.128

5.2 1069

5.5 112

9mm

115 gr Hdy. XTP

Win.

0.746

Win. SP

1.135

5.2 1062

5.5 1116

9mm

115 gr Speer GD

Win.

0.746

Win. SP

1.122

5.2 1067

5.5 1111

9mm

124 gr Berry HP

Win.

0.746

Win. SP

1.115

4.4 959

4.8 1021

40 S&W 150 gr Nosler HP

Win.

0.840

Win. SP

1.133

6.8 1041

7.2

40 S&W 155 gr Hdy. XTP

Win.

0.840

Win. SP

1.130

6.6 1040

7.0 1098

40 S&W 155 gr Berry RNHB

Win.

0.840

Win. SP

1.129

6.6 1031

7.0 1089

40 S&W 165 gr Rainier HP

Win.

0.840

Win. SP

1.130

6.2 1006

6.6 1065

40 S&W 180 gr Berry HP

Win.

0.840

Win. SP

1.130

5.1

874

5.5 930

45 Auto 185 gr Rem. GS

Win.

0.892

CCI 300

1.208

7.0 805

7.4 899

45 Auto 185 gr Hdy. SWC

Win.

0.892

CCI 300

1.208

7.0 858

7.4 896

45 Auto 200 gr Hdy. XTP

Win.

0.892

CCI 300

1.254

6.2 710

6.6 784

45 Auto 200 gr Rainier SWC Win.

0.892

CCI 300

1.262

6.2 764

6.6 793

45 Auto 230 gr Rainier FMJ

0.892

CCI 300

1.265

5.4 605

5.8 666

Win.

1114

Velocities are shown as the averages for ve shots with each load.
These loads were safe and reliable in the authors handguns, but neither the author nor the publisher
accepts any responsibility for their preparation and use by others.

www.gunworld.com

SEPT 2014 | GUN WORLD

73

GW 14-09-RELOAD-70-75.qxp 7/2/14 3:48 AM Page 74

RELOAD

Bullets used for loading 9mm Luger are (left to right) 90-grain Hornady XTP, 115-grain Remington FMJ, 115-grain Hornady XTP, 115grain Speer Gold Dot, and 124-grain Berry HP.

primers and Winchester primers

that initial tests would involve pro-

handgun depends on grip, trigger

were utilized in those calibers but

ducing loads that were not neces-

action, and eyesight it is as much a

CCI 300 large pistol primers were

sarily of maximum persuasion,

function of the shooter as it is of

used in the .45 Auto loads. Five car-

especially with the plated bullets

the gun and load.

tridges were prepared for each load

in .40 S&W and .45 Auto. Like

and all powder charges were

many other hand loaders, I do load

groups with all of these loads, but

weighed. Velocities were measured

to near maximum occasionally, but

they regularly perforated the middle

at 10 feet from the muzzle using a

only using propellants with which I

of targets placed at 25 yards from

Competition Electronics ProChrono

am familiar and confident.

the shooting bench.

chronograph. Complete descrip-

The results presented in the

Therefore, I did not try to shoot

By comparing the data shown

tions of the loads assembled and

table indicate that indeed most of

in the table with a lot of informa-

the results of the tests are shown in

the loads fall in the moderate cate-

tion obtained when using other

the accompanying table.

gory. In spite of that, all of the pis-

powders in the same cartridges, it

tols cycled reliably, so the loads

is readily apparent that the CFE

ence with the CFE Pistol by using it

were reliable in my guns. Even the

Pistol is in fact slower than the old

in loading the most popular cal-

plinking loads utilizing plated bul-

standby Alliant Unique and is com-

ibers utilized in auto-loading pis-

lets in the .45 Auto shot very well.

parable in burning rate to Hodgdon

tols. Moreover, it was intended

Because accuracy obtained with a

HS-6, Winchester AutoComp, and

My plan was to gain experi-

Accurate No. 5.
This means it is not only a very
useful handgun powder, but also it
has the advantage of reducing
copper residues in bores, which is
an important consideration in
high-volume competitive handgun
shooting. GW

CONTACT
Hodgdon Powder Company
(913) 632-9455
Hodgdon.com
The CFE Pistol is similar in burning rate to Winchester AutoComp, but loading
data are not interchangeable.

74

GUN WORLD | SEPT 2014

www.gunworld.com

GW_1409_75 6/27/14 6:39 AM Page 75

GW 14-09-CONCEALED-76-81.qxp 7/2/14 3:56 AM Page 76

CONCEALED
CARRY

The Colt Python is one of the most


recognizable handguns in the world.
This .357 Magnum revolver is a classic,
and 2015 marks the 60th anniversary
of its introduction.

76

GUN WORLD | SEPT 2014

www.gunworld.com

GW 14-09-CONCEALED-76-81.qxp 7/2/14 3:56 AM Page 77

THE COLT PYTHON

& THE ZOMBIE


RESURRECTION

With A Starring Role In The Walking


Dead And A 60th Anniversary Looming,
The Colt Python Deserves An Afterlife
Of Its Own Story & Photos by Dave Workman

fficially retired from the Colt product line


just before the turn of the century, and
removed from Custom Shop production
about 10 years later, the Colt Python would have
been 60 years old in 2015. Because of its
stardom in a currently popular television show
about walking dead zombies, this powerful
revolver deserves an afterlife more than as the
prop for characters on the small screen.

www.gunworld.com

SEPT 2014 | GUN WORLD

77

GW 14-09-CONCEALED-76-81.qxp 7/2/14 3:57 AM Page 78

CONCEALED CARRY

Workman has carried his prized Python in this vintage Safariland shoulder holster to protect it from the Northwest weather in the eld,
or under a parka for personal protection.

blue nish (I really never liked the

the-box, and even some of the hol-

sense. Indeed, it denes the term

nickel or stainless guns), the check-

ster-work specimens are priced in

with that unmistakably sexy full un-

ered hardwood grips, an action that

the $1,500 range.

derlug vent rib barrel, the deep royal

was glass-smooth and a muzzle

This gun is a classic in every

SPECIFICATIONS
COLT PYTHON

has the original box and a 6-inch

Magnum Ive ever red.

barrel. It is about 98 percent, but is

The Python is also one of the

Caliber: .357 Magnum


Capacity: Six shots
Barrel Length (inches): 8, 6, 4,
3 (rare), 2.5
Finish: Royal Blue, Nickel, Stainless
78

GUN WORLD | SEPT 2014

not for sale. Ive carried it while

most recognizable handguns on the

hunting and shot at game with it

planet, and its current entertain-

and did I mention its not for sale?

ment stardom is nothing new. It

Produced: 1955-1996

My gun is a dead-bang shooter,

blast different than any other .357

The Python has been written

was the choice of bad cops in one

about, and maybe overly so, and

of the Dirty Harry lms, and a le-

renewed interest thanks to that

gion of screen heroes have carried

television series may compel me

this gun in various movie roles, in-

to lobby further some acquain-

cluding Burt Reynolds, Don Johnson

tances at Colt to bring back the

and Bo Svensen.

Snake. It would be entirely appro-

I bought my Python in the early

priate to resurrect it on the 60th

1980s for a pittance of what theyre

anniversary of its introduction, and

fetching today at gun shows. I have

I suspect Colt would be instantly

seen them listed at $2,000 new-in-

back-ordered.
www.gunworld.com

GW 14-09-CONCEALED-76-81.qxp 7/2/14 3:57 AM Page 79

the visit found him admiring the

using .38 Special handloads, that I

How many handgunners would line

handgun, cocking it and letting the

won a steel plate match several

up for the chance to purchase a

hammer down slowly, and balanc-

years ago. There is not a rabbit on

brand-new Colt Python?

ing it in his hand.

the landscape that can dodge a

How about a show of hands?

Colt produced the Python ini-

GREAT LENGTHS

148-grain semi-wadcutter launched

tially with deep blue or nickel n-

from this double-action sixgun. I

ishes. The nickel nish was

have carried this gun for personal

barrel lengths of 2 , 3, 4, 6 and 8

eventually replaced by either satin

defense in a shoulder holster, and

inches during its lifespan. They

stainless or a bright, polished nish

would not wish to be on the busi-

were all sexy, but for my money, the

called Ultimate Stainless. A target

ness end.

6-inch version is the ultimate

model was chambered for .38 Spe-

model. Cop pals of mine who car-

cial, but it is in the magnum cham-

H110 behind a 125-grain JHP, either

ried 6-inch Pythons on duty got im-

bering that the Python earned its

a Nosler, Hornady XTP or Speer. Its

mediate and undivided attention

reputation.

a mild load by comparison to some

Colt produced the Python with

when they arrived at disturbances

Lets get a little picky now. A

My personal load is 19 grains of

Ive seen recommended, but it

and other crime scenes, and they

steady diet of full-house magnums

shoots at, hits plenty hard and

didnt even have to draw the gun.

can put a cylinder out of time so

doesnt wreck anyones wrist shoot-

that the chamber and forcing cone

ing it.

I never saw a 3-inch model, and


the most common versions have

do not precisely line up. That could

the 4- or 6-inch tube. Some models

cause the gun to spit a little lead or

were factory-tted with neoprene

powder, so it would need a bit of

grips and the Python Hunter came

gunsmithing.

with a scope. They all have target

But if carefully maintained, this

WEIGHTY FIREPOWER
One complaint I hear about the
Python is about its weight. Its on
the heavy side, and that helps soak

hammers and triggers, and ad-

sixgun stays the course, locks up

up recoil. My gun weighs about 2.5

justable sights.

tight the moment the trigger is

pounds, and thats actually a bit

pressed and the hammer drops,

lighter than my Smith & Wesson

and puts em where you want em.

Model 57 in .41 Magnum with its 6-

Not long after acquiring mine, I


was visiting my uncle and mentioned, Hey, I got a Python. A cou-

Ive been careful enough to use

ple of raised eyebrows later, I asked,

a less-than-full-house magnum

You want to see it? Didnt have to

handload with considerable suc-

ask that question twice. The rest of

cess, and it was with this revolver,

inch barrel. Did I mention that its


not for sale?
Another complaint about the
Python is what youll hear about
other double-action revolvers.
Theyre slower to reload than a
semi-auto. Well, if youre good at it,
using a decent speed loader, it is
not that much slower.
Others complain that, with only
six rounds, it lacks repower. Let me
tell you something. The Python
breathes re. Anybody ever see this
baby go off at night? Instead of
spraying the countryside with lead,
just settle that front sight on whatever it is you want to shoot, and
shoot it. Aint nobody gonna take a
warp-speed 125-grain JHP and re-

Workmans two snakes, the 6-inch Python (top) and his 4-inch Diamondback; the latter being inspired by the former. Both revolvers were highly successful, and the author
wishes Colt would bring them back.

www.gunworld.com

main much of a threat. Shoot a


deer solidly with this revolver and
SEPT 2014 | GUN WORLD

79

GW 14-09-CONCEALED-76-81.qxp 7/2/14 3:57 AM Page 80

CONCEALED CARRY
Speer JHP out of the muzzle at
about 925 fps, and I can roll a tin
can around at 25 yards with it.

A CONCEALED PYTHON?
It is not only possible, but practical to carry a Python in a shoulder
holster for self-defense, because
the gun and the round are proven
ght stoppers. Imagine some hoodlum intent on an easy mugging
coming face-to-face with a Colt
Python. Suddenly, the urge to steal
becomes the urge to survive.
As the favored sidearm of the
Rick Grimes character in The Walking Dead, Colts Python is proving
itself rather tough to kill in its own
right, but this baby is not a zombie.
It is a remarkably handsome, inAt the range, the Python is an excellent target gun, and Workman enjoys plugging away
at small targets to retain his ability to hit bigger things.

credibly accurate and highly prized


double-action revolver that may be
the best D/A ever in .357 Magnum.
The Python has been dead as

all that remains is to re up the bar-

beefed-up Detective Special with

a production model for better than

becue or the smoker.

full-underlug barrel and adjustable

a decade. In my opinion, its time to

sights, it came with a choice of 2 -

rise from the grave.

Through much of the Southwest these days, instead of zom-

, 4- or 6-inch vent rib barrels.

bies, theyre suffering from a plague

Mine has a 4-inch tube, and I

of wild pigs. Were not talking about

recently tted it with a set of Her-

some happy camper like the ones

rets stocks. Its not for sale, either. I

you see in the FFA tent at the

occasionally carry that revolver in a

county fair, were talking mean,

pancake-type holster I built, and its

crop-destroying, dangerous porkers

a good shooter. It is the same

that can raise hell with someones

model John Wayne carried in his

property. I can envision the Python

two late-career cop movies, McQ

Pork Pounder with a 6-inch barrel, a

and Brannigan. Steve McQueen car-

set of Pachmayr grips, two speed-

ried a 2 -inch Diamondback in

loaders and a belt slide cartridge

Bullit.

carrier, produced as a package in a


lockable hard-sided case.
The Python was so hot in its

It should be noted that I dont


own any collector guns. Every handgun in my possession is a work-

heyday that Colt produced the Dia-

horse rather than a show horse. The

mondback in .38 Special. This is a

Diamondback has its ring pin on

sexy little number in its own right,

the hammer, whereas the Pythons

and I happen to own one that I

ring pin is in the frame. A load con-

bought at a very good price about

sisting of 4.7 grains of Hodgdons

four years ago. Essentially a

HP38 pushes a 125-grain Nosler or

80

GUN WORLD | SEPT 2014

Did I mention that mine is not


for sale? GW

The Python is extremely versatile, as is


any .357 Magnum, because it will digest a
steady diet of .38 Specials (left) all day
long, as well as magnum rounds.

www.gunworld.com

GW_1409_81 6/27/14 6:42 AM Page 81

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GW 14-09-SMITH-82-91.qxp 7/2/14 4:05 AM Page 82

GUNSMITHING

A well-mounted optical
sight can make a huge
difference in rie accuracy.
Here, the authors son, Kyle,
tests a Savage 10 Precision
Carbine in .223 Remington
wearing a Leupold Mark 6
Compact Tactical scope.

82

GUN WORLD | SEPT 2014

www.gunworld.com

GW 14-09-SMITH-82-91.qxp 7/2/14 4:05 AM Page 83

STRAIGHT,
SECURE & LEVEL
Scope Mounting Dos And Donts
Story & Photos by Steve Sieberts

ounting an optical sight


on a rie seems like a
fairly straight forward
process, but if youre not careful,
things can go sideways pretty
easily, and a sideways scope is of
very little use.

www.gunworld.com

SEPT 2014 | GUN WORLD

83

GW 14-09-SMITH-82-91.CRX 84,85,88 7/4/14 12:38 AM Page 84

GUNSMITHING
impact variations in different ammunition. We want the scope reticle
to be as mechanically centered as
possible to offer the widest range of
adjustments.

TWO MOUNTING
SYSTEMS
There are too many combinations of optics and firearms to
cover in one short column, so Ill
focus on two types of mounting
systems for a centerfire rifle, and
then the correct way to get the
scope securely mounted so it can
do its job when needed.
The rst application is the
standard, steel two-piece base,
with the rings that utilize a dovetail
mount. The dovetail ts into the
base very snugly by rotating 90 degrees. Many manufacturers use this
type because its a very strong
mounting system, but it has quirks
that you have to deal with in order
to get the best performance from
Sometimes, the gunsmith will need
to chase out the threads with a
good sharp tap, either in the
receiver or the mounts or rings. Its
a good idea to place a rag under the
tap to catch the chips. You want to
keep them out of the trigger area.
Also, use good quality cutting oil.

your scope.
I prefer the two-piece steel
bases because with the one-piece
base, if the receivers mounting
holes are not lined up with the
screw holes machined into the
base, tightening the base screws
can induce stress in the scope

looks can be deceiving, especially

mounting system. Granted, it wont

rifle, we need to focus on two im-

with sharp recoiling rearms. There

be much, but any stress is to be

portant factors. First, we want to

are specic torque settings to apply

avoided for maximum accuracy.

make sure its securely mounted

to various parts of the mounting

With the two-piece base, if the

because we dont want it coming

system to ensure its on the rie

front set of screw holes are not

off while were shooting. Having a

rock solid.

aligned with the rear, we can cor-

When mounting a scope on a

scope in our lap instead of on the

Another reason we want it

rect that offset somewhat. Ill show

rifle is not conducive to good ac-

straight and level is to have avail-

how to do that in this months col-

curacy.

able the most click adjustments in

umn.

Even a slight looseness in the

all directions. If I have to use up al-

The other type of system Ill

scope can cause huge shifts in our

most all of my windage or elevation

cover is the Mark 4 mounts-and-

point of impact, especially when

just to get the scope and rie ze-

ring system from Leupold, which

shooting past 100 yards. So while it

roed, I then have little to no adjust-

uses a Picatinny type rail for the

may seem the scope is on tight,

ments left to account for point of

base. These all-steel ring-and-base

84

GUN WORLD | SEPT 2014

www.gunworld.com

GW 14-09-SMITH-82-91.CRX 84,85,88 7/4/14 12:38 AM Page 85

systems are very tough, and were


Using a Q-tip to
apply the Acetone
to the receiver
threads helps
degrease them.

the only scope mounting system I


used when building precision ries
for the DOD.
For this project, Ill be using
two Savage rifles as platforms to
demonstrate how to mount these
scopes. On the first rifle, a Savage
110 tactical rifle in .308, Ill mount
a Mark 4 ETR scope in 3 x 18 and a
Mil-Dot reticle with the Mark 4 ring
system.
The other rie is the Savage 10
Precision Carbine in .223, a great little LE patrol rie, and Im going to
mount a Leupold 6x scope with MilDot reticle and the dovetail bases
and rings.

Using compressed air will


speed up the cleaning
process. Air compressors
suitable for a small home
shop are available from many
places for $120 and up.

Remember, the dovetail-type


base-and-ring system is what you
would mount on a typical hunting
rifle. So Ill be explaining how to
mount a tactical system and a
more traditional hunting rifle-type
system.

CLEAN THREADS
The rst item on our checklist is
to make sure the receiver threads
are cleaned of any oil, grease or
residue. If Im rebarreling the rie,
and I have the barrel off the receiver, Ill go ahead and chase out
the scope base mounting threads
with a good, sharp thread tap. Otherwise, Ill usually just leave them
alone unless I see that the threads
have been damaged by previous attempts to install a scope. Cross
threading is a fairly common occurrence when people are unfamiliar
with rearms tools and techniques.
If you are removing an old
scope and replacing old mounts
Using the Leupold
wring wrench to rotate
the front ring dovetail
into position.

and rings and cant get the old


screws out, it could be because either the person screwed them on
too tight, or used the wrong thread

www.gunworld.com

SEPT 2014 | GUN WORLD

85

GW 14-09-SMITH-82-91.qxp 7/2/14 4:05 AM Page 86

GUNSMITHING

If you dont own the special tool, you can use a


wood hammer handle or wooden dowel to
turn the front dovetail scope ring into position.

break the bond of the adhesive.


So, assuming we have a barreled action in the stock and ready
to go, the next step is to degrease
the screws and the threads in the
receiver. One of the best degreasers
Ive found is Acetone, but it is highly
ammable. Automotive brake
cleaner works well too, and has an
additional benet of being in
#320 grit abrasive compound and
the lapping tool from Brownells.
The tool is also available in 30 mm
for the larger Mark 4 rings. Always
use a little oil when using the
lapping compound. Break Free
works pretty well.

aerosol form. Compressed air is


also very useful when mounting
scopes. I have a small Sears air
compressor that I bought new for
about $120 that works well around
the shop.
Once the base screws are de-

locking compound (probably the

screws, and never use any thread

greased, mount the front and rear

latter). Loc-Tite makes various

adhesive on the ring screws.

bases without thread locker. Re-

grades of thread adhesive. Blue is

If you cant remove the base

move the front base screw and look

for small/ne threads that you

screws and you suspect someone

down into the threads of the re-

want to be removable, red is for

used the wrong adhesive, remove

ceiver and the tip of the screws to

threads that you want to be mostly

the scope, take the barreled action

see if the screw has bottomed out

permanent. Green is for larger

out of the stock, and place a wet

on the barrel threads. If it has,

threads like 1911 compensators that

towel around the receiver. You can

shorten the screw on a bench

you dont want to remove later. Al-

now carefully apply heat to the

grinder to make sure there is no

ways use blue Loc-tite for base

screws with a propane torch to

contact between the front screws

86

GUN WORLD | SEPT 2014

www.gunworld.com

GW 14-09-SMITH-82-91.qxp 7/2/14 4:05 AM Page 87

the front and rear rings, although

MAXIMUM RECOMMENDED TORQUE SETTINGS

we also want to check misalignment with the Mark 4 mounting


system as well. The rear ring is ad-

6-48 Scope Base Screws

22 in.-lbs

8-40 Scope Base Screws

28 in.-lbs

8-40 Scope Ring Screws

28 in.-lbs

When selecting the rings for a

Mk 4 Ring Keeper Screws

65 in.-lbs

specic rie, get the correct height

STD Windage Screws

45 in.-lbs

justable for windage, and we want


to get that as centered as possible.

for your gun. Most scope manufacturers make low, medium and high
rings to accommodate various
mounting situations, so identify the
combination that mounts the rings
at the lowest possible height.

and the barrel extension. Dont use

anything interfering with the proper

a le to try this as the screws are

ejection of cases.

harder than the le and you will end


up damaging the le.

BASES AND RINGS


Screw the bases down on the

With the dovetail mounting

Now that we have both rings


mounted on the bases, we need to
check front-to-rear ring alignment.

system, I attach the top half of the

Brownells makes a nifty scope ring

ring of the front set and rotate the

alignment tool for this. This will

ring into the dovetail with a 1-inch

check for angular misalignment.

piece of wooden dowel rod. Le-

With todays modern mounting

receiver, and then attach the rings

upold makes a handy ring wrench

systems, you will not likely have to

to the base. With the Mark 4-type

for this purpose, and a hammer

shim the bases to get the rings

mounting system, I always attach

handle also works.

aligned for elevation, but you will

the rings with the large, keeper nuts

The dovetail system is where

need to correct side to side or an-

to the left of the receiver, rather

you will most likely run into mis-

gular misalignment with a lapping

than on the right, as I dont want

alignment issues with regards to

tool. Install the scope alignment

Lapping in the scope rings. Use a rotating motion to avoid favoring one side of the rings or the other.

www.gunworld.com

SEPT 2014 | GUN WORLD

87

GW 14-09-SMITH-82-91.CRX 84,85,88 7/4/14 12:39 AM Page 88

GUNSMITHING
Sometimes the front base screw
will be slightly too long and will
contact the threads on the barrel
extension through the receiver ring.
You need to shorten the screw a
little on a bench grinder with a set
of parallel pliers. This will ensure
the downward force is applied to
the screw shoulder and scope base,
and not the barrel extension.

Torqueing the keeper nut on a Leupold


Mark 4 scope ring. See the sidebar on page
87 for basic ring-and-base screw torque
settings.

tool onto the rings and lap the


rings with the lapping compound
and plenty of oil until you get
about 90 percent contact with the

A scope ring alignment tool from Brownells helps get the scope rings in perfect alignment, and it works with both 1-inch and 30mm rings. Here, you can see how the rings are
misaligned and how much movement is needed to get them into alignment. For rings that
are misaligned in elevation, shims may be needed.

bottom ring.
When lapping the rings in,
make sure you rotate the tool side
to side as you run it front to back,

vent, then degrease using acetone

want to tighten the base screws

or brake cleaner.

using a torque wrench that is grad-

I always mark the bottom rings

uated in inch-pounds. The 6-48

using a gure-eight motion. This is

so I dont get them mixed up. I al-

screws should be torqued to about

to make sure you put even pressure

ways put the mark on the left side

22 in.-lbs, and larger 8-40 screws

all the way around the base of the

of the rings for orientation, and I

torqued to 26 in.-lbs.

ring. Check your work as you go, and

put a single stake mark on the rear

make sure you are getting good

ring and double stake mark on the

rings and bases, the large -inch

contact. Eventually, you will remove

front ring. This ensures I get every-

keeper screws on the rings should

the nish from the bottom of the

thing properly oriented after I have

be torqued to 65 in.-lbs. Ive in-

ring and you will see what kind of

lapped the rings in.

cluded a handy chart with torque

contact you are getting.

I also like to make sure the rifle

When installing the Mark 4

settings for the various screws

is leveled before mounting the

used on ring and base systems

lapped in, remove the rings and

scope, as Im going to make sure

(see sidebar).

bases, clean them of all lapping

the rifle and scope are both leveled

compound and oil, and reinstall

before I tighten everything.

Once you have the rings

them, this time using blue Loctite


on the base screws only. I usually
clean everything with a good sol88

GUN WORLD | SEPT 2014

Install the rings and use the


scope ring alignment tool to line
everything back up again, and in-

GETTING TORQUED
When you install the bases, you

stall the scope. Make sure you have


an equal gap between the top and
www.gunworld.com

GW_1409_89 6/30/14 11:59 PM Page 89

GW 14-09-SMITH-82-91.qxp 7/2/14 4:06 AM Page 90

GUNSMITHING

The author testing


the Savage M110 in
.308 Win.

bottom rings. This will ensure you

25 feet away. Turn the laser on and

have even pressure when you

point the laser at the target pro-

tighten the top ring screws, and it

vided, place the crosshairs just

also looks much more professional.

above the red dot, and you will be

With the rie already leveled, I

on paper at 100 yards. The Site-Lite

ensure the scope is also using a tar-

also has a crosshair alignment grid

get that Ive already squared up. I

with a built-in level already at-

align the vertical crosshair with the

tached, and makes quick work of

vertical lines on the target and then

getting the crosshairs vertical and

Im good to go. Another way to do

horizontal.

this in your garage is by setting the

Boresighting can also be per-

scope on its lowest power and

formed at the range by removing

marking a plumb line on a wall

the bolt, and looking through the

across the garage.

bore and placing the center of the

Now that the rie is leveled and

bore on my target at 100 yards and

the scope is mounted and tightened,

moving the crosshairs with the

I want to make sure I have the

windage and elevation adjustments

crosshairs aligned with the probable

until they coincide, but its nice to

point of impact. Again, Brownells

have the rie already be on paper

carries a neat little laser boresighter

when I get to the range.

that makes quick work of getting the


rie on paper at 100 yards.
The Site-Lite level mounts into

doesnt have to be intimidating.


Once you have the proper tools and
install a few scopes, it becomes

protected with O-rings on the spud,

easier and youll have the con-

and the laser target is placed about

dence to tackle other projects. GW

GUN WORLD | SEPT 2014

Brownells Inc.
Brownells.com
Bluegrass Sportsmans League
BgSlInc.com
Savage Arms
SavageArms.com
Leupold, Optics
(800)-LEUPOLD
Leupold.com
Oehler Chronographs
(512) 327-6900
Oehler-Research.com

Properly mounting a scope

the barrel with a spud. The bore is

90

CONTACTS

Federal Premium Ammunition


(800) 379-1732
FederalPremium.com

www.gunworld.com

GW_1409_91 7/2/14 12:18 PM Page 91

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GW 14-09-Q&A-92-95.CRX 92 7/4/14 12:43 AM Page 92

QUESTIONS

and ANSWERS

Bushnell
headquarters
in Overland
Park, Kansas.

TAKING
THE LONG VIEW
Questions by Gun World Editors, Photos by Bushnell

or decades, Bushnell
has been known for
ne optics the world
over. Recently, we sighted an
opportunity to connect with
Jordan Vermillion,
Bushnells director of
product development, and
he got us focused on the
right information.

Gun World: How did the company get started?

purchased 400 binoculars for a

on improving the binocular by incor-

Christmas gift order. In the post-

porating lighter-weight materials

World War II United States, optics

and wide-angle lenses, and adding

were a luxury item, and he saw the

coatings to reduce glare.

opportunity to bring high-performance optics to the average consumer.

GW: What has changed the


most in the optics eld?

Unfortunately, a shipping strike


prevented pre-Christmas delivery of

JV: Some of the biggest advance-

the binoculars, resulting in the can-

ments have come by way of lens

cellation of all of his orders. To sell

and prism coatings. These maxi-

through his inventory, David created

mize light transmission, color -

a mail-order business and placed

delity and resolution, providing

an advertisement in a sporting

consumers with an enhanced expe-

Jordan Vermillion: The company

goods magazine offering a 30-day

rience in the eld.

began in 1947 when David P. Bush-

exchange or refund on purchases.

nell was visiting the Orient on an


around-the-world honeymoon and
92

GUN WORLD | SEPT 2014

Later, he leveraged his background in engineering and focused

Another category is distance


measuring devices or laser
rangenders. In 1995, we were the
www.gunworld.com

GW 14-09-Q&A-92-95.qxp 7/2/14 4:12 AM Page 93

Advancements in all-weather
performance have also been important. Our permanent hydrophobic
RainGuard HD lens coating causes
moisture to bead and scatter less
light. For hunters, this means having the condence to acquire a target and take a shot when other
optics would be rendered useless.
Finally, reticles have evolved
from basic duplex designs to bullet
drop compensation (BDC) to the
Mil-based reticle systems used by
military. With ballistic data at our
ngertips and reticles that allow us
to accurately account for distance
and windage, shooters are becoming more accurate and capable of
Founder David
P. Bushnell with an
early product display.

shooting long distance targets.

GW: Do you ever adapt existing


products?

The Elite LRHS 3-12x


44mm long-range
hunting scope.

rst company to make distance


measuring attainable for consumers with the Lytespeed 400, a
device that allowed golfers and
hunters to simultaneously measure
the distance to the target and magnify the image, eliminating the
guesswork, resulting in more condence and accuracy on the course

The Fusion 1 Mile 10


x 42mm binoculars
with laser rangender.

and in the woods.


www.gunworld.com

SEPT 2014 | GUN WORLD

93

GW 14-09-Q&A-92-95.qxp 7/2/14 4:12 AM Page 94

QUESTIONS and ANSWERS


simple, easy-to-use navigational
device to help consumers get from
point A to point B.

GW: What is new for 2014?


JV: There may not be a technology
in the last few decades that has excited hunters like trail cameras, but
until recently, the only way to check
those cameras was by visiting the
site and risking disrupting animal
patterns and leaving human scent.
The Bushnell Wireless Trophy
Cam HD is the industrys rst carrier-approved wireless trail camera
built on the AT&T network. No conThe Truth
rangender
with ClearShot
Technology.

tracts required; consumers select


the Bushnell data plan that best
meets their needs and images are
delivered in near real time via SMS
or email. In addition, consumers

JV: One of our mottos is that if it

the hardest working product at

can control the camera remotely

can be built, it can be improved. An

every price point. Whether a con-

through the Android or iPhone app

example is our recently introduced

sumer is purchasing his/her rst

or via the web portal.

third-generation, laser range-nd-

Bushnell binocular or has saved for

ing binocular. From the rst genera-

months to purchase a riescope for

in long-range shooting, Bushnell

tion to the third, consumers helped

a once-in-a-lifetime hunt, they can

has recently introduced the Elite

identify areas for improvement.

rest assured knowing theyve spent

Long Range Hunting Scope (LRHS).

their hard-earned money on the

The 3-12x 44mm riescope offers a

best product money can buy.

broad magnication range, the Mil-

The new Fusion 1 Mile features


a laser rangender capable of acquiring targets at distances up to

We recently introduced the

Because of the growing interest

based G2H rst focal plane reticle

one mile in combination with a high

Bushnell Bulletproof Guarantee, a

and an exposed elevation turret

quality binocular available with 8x,

no-questions-asked, one-year guar-

equipped with the RevLimiter zero

10x or 12x magnication.

antee on select binoculars, laser

stop mechanism.
From the range to the eld, the

Based on consumer feedback

rangenders and spotting scopes.

of the second-generation unit, we

If, for any reason, a consumer isnt

LRHS provides the long-range en-

completely redesigned the display

satised with the Bushnell product,

thusiast with the information and

to improve readout visibility in

it can be returned to Bushnell for a

repeatability necessary to succeed

bright ambient light conditions

100-percent refund.

as a marksman. GW

while enhancing the binoculars

Another tenant of our business

light transmission and color delity

is simplicity, and we work with en-

for improved low light performance.

thusiasts throughout our product


development cycle to ensure the

GW: What sets Bushnell and its


products apart?

products we design are inherently


simple to use and understand. For
example, with the introduction of

JV: Our ultimate goal is to develop


94

GUN WORLD | SEPT 2014

Company Overview

Bushnell
Company Established: 1948
Owner: ATK Sporting Group
Headquarters: Overland Park, Kansas
Web: Bushnell.com

BackTrack in 2006, we introduced a


www.gunworld.com

GW_1409_95 6/30/14 11:57 PM Page 95

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Project1 7/2/14 6:26 AM Page 96

BACK PAGES
accompanying survey of available
trail bikes from multiple makers
gave Hondas copywriters a run for
their money, waxing lyrical on the
future of these cycles.
History will note that in the
Sixties, we trumpeted, a new type
of vehicle appeared in the trackless
outdoors. Called variously trail machines, tote goats or trail scooters,
they are gasoline-powered, twowheeled beasts of burden that can
do many things that four-footed,
grass-eating pack animals cannot,
yet they can traverse equally as
rugged terrain.
And while this and other
rugged little two-wheelers delivered on the promise of getting into
the back country where the game
is, they lacked in one very important aspect, namely the capacity to
pack mid- to large-sized game out
of the backcountry after the hunt.
Still, they remained popular for preOur September 1964 cover featured eld test editor Jim Dougherty (more about him
in a future issue), Normas Schultz & Larsen .358 Magnum, and a Honda 90 trail bike.

season exploratory treks, and


Honda manufactured the Trail 90 in

GUN YOUR ENGINE

various forms through 1979. GW

By Craig Hodgkins

For many born in the late 20th

paign in mens interest and out-

century and beyond, the name

door magazines, the Trail 90 (also

Honda is associated with automo-

known as the CT200) was guaran-

biles. But in 1964, Honda Motors

teed to handle rough terrain

had just begun its reign as the

(Shell climb all over a 50% in-

worlds largest manufacturer of

clineif you feel so inclined), and

motorcycles, and its rst production

boasted 30% more oomph than

automobile, the T360 mini pick-up

its predecessors. In a nod to

truck, had been in production less

Smokey the Bear, it also came with

than a year.

the only standard-equipment

Also in 1964, Honda launched


a CT series of trail bikes aimed
directly at hunters and gatherers.
According to a ubiquitous ad cam96

GUN WORLD | SEPT 2014

spark arrestor approved by the


USDA Forest Service.
Gun World featured the Trail 90
on the September cover, andin an

In this 1964 ad, a model perches


precariously on the seat of a Trail 90
holding a intlock rearm that perhaps
only Garry James could identify. (Honda)

www.gunworld.com

GW_1409_97 6/30/14 3:57 AM Page 97

BUSINESS
DIRECTORY
John Bartulin
866-866-5146 ext:2746
jbartulin@beckett.com

GW 14-09-AD INDEX-98-99 7/2/14 6:37 AM Page 98

Advertiser Index
Ambush Arms
American Tactical Imports
ATK - Blackhawk
ATK - Savage Arms
Barnes Bullets Inc
BARSKA
Black Hills Ammunition
Browning
CampCo9,
Colt's Manufacturing Company
Cor-Bon
CZ-USA
Daniel Defense
Davidson's
Del-Ton
DoubleTap Ammunition
European American Armoury
GTUL
Guncrafter Industries, LLC
Jantz Supply
Les Baer Custom,Inc.
Major Surplus & Survival
Mec-Gar
Numrich Gun Parts Corporation
Redeld
Rio Grande Custom Grips
Rock River Arms
S&K Scope Mounts
SCCY Industries
Secure Medical
Silencerco
Sportsman's Guide
Springeld Armory
Sturm, Ruger & Company, Inc.
ULTIMAK
Umarex USA, Inc.
WILSON COMBAT

81
41
23
91
31
3
39
51
89
2
29
67
19
5
69
97, 99
7
61
53, 97
62-63
33
21
29
98
45
97
61
97
37
97
11
97
75
100
43
59
98

The advertiser index is provided as a service to


Gun World readers. Gun World is not responsible
for omissions or typographical errors on names
or page numbers.

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Today!

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98

GUN WORLD | SEPT 2014

www.gunworld.com

GW_1409_C3 6/30/14 2:34 AM Page C3

GW_1409_C4 6/30/14 2:37 AM Page C4

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