The two simple words said much more than they implied. First, both Poen van Zyl and I clearly understood we each knew which of the reedbuck rams were to be killed, and second, it was down to a matter of the mathematics involved in taking him cleanly. Based on my professional hunter’s momentary silence, I responded with a brief question of my own.
“Just hold on the point of the shoulder, and squeeze the trigger.” Poen van Zyl may have thought in Afrikaans, but knew how to guide a visiting sportsman in English. The Schmidt & Bender’s crosshairs quickly settled on the ram’s shoulder, and I broke the trigger of the Heym SR30 like you’d snap an icicle in two. Even through the recoil, I could see the lean reedbuck fold and collapse to its death; the .300 Winchester Magnum had once again done its job, as it had on so many other African species. Though the riﬂe and optic were new to me, the cartridge and bullet were not; I have come to love the .300 Winchester Magnum, and the Barnes LRX is among the best projectiles the company has ever produced.
Barnes Bullets – the success story of Randy and Coni Brooks – has its roots in the brainchild of Fred Barnes, who saw the need for quality softpoints in a number of different calibers. Fred had a limited success, but his name surely carried on, deﬁning a trend in modern bullet construction that is equal parts revolutionary and genius.
I am on the young end of the gunwriter age spectrum, but at 45 years old I am also wise enough to know whom to contact for the story. Randy Brooks and I have had more than one conversation, albeit via telephone, regarding the roots of his company and the development of the Barnes X bullet. As the famous story goes – and as it was related to me directly – the good Mr. Brooks was glassing for Alaskan bears when the impetus for a genre of projectiles popped into his head. “If the lead core is an issue with bullet separation, why not take the lead out?” And thus the Barnes X monometal softpoint was born. And while that bullet gave me equal parts exhilaration and ﬁts of mania, I loved the design. Being an all-copper bullet, the Barnes X was designed to expand into four petals, giving a devastating balance of expansion and penetration. The original design had some issues with accuracy and copper fouling, but that was all rectiﬁed with the release of the Barnes TSX – or Triple Shock X – bullet, which has three large grooves on the bearing surface to reduce fouling and improve accuracy.
The TSX, and its tipped counterpart, the TTSX, both serve most hunting scenarios perfectly, the LRX – or Long Range X bullet – has a sleeker profile and higher ballistic coefficient, to retain as much energy as possible downrange, and keep the trajectories flat. The LRX retains the royal blue polymer tip of the TTSX, but the ogive is engineered for the best downrange performance, and will indeed show the benefits over the flat base spitzers out past 250 or 275 yards.
The LRX, like all Barnes bullets, are praised and noted for their weight retention, as the monometal construction prevents any jacket separation – because there is no jacket – but it’s the accuracy potential of the LRX that truly opened my eyes. I’ve loaded this bullet in several different cartridges – with the best results coming from the .30-caliber magnums – and all of the accuracy has been more than acceptable. But it seems that the 175-grain .30-caliber LRX has garnered a special place in my heart.
While testing the new .30 Nosler, I utilized a number of bullets – bullets that have, in the past, produced fantastic results – but the best performer by far was the 175-grain LRX. Delivering ½ minute-of-angle accuracy and velocities on par with the .300 Weatherby, I know this combination could easily handle everything in North America, and 90 percent of the African species. In the Heym SR30 HPPR – the straight pull, High Performance Precision Riﬂe – it easily prints ½ to ¾ MOA ﬁve-shot groups using handloaded Barnes 175-grain LRX bullets.
For the record, that reedbuck didn’t stand a chance; the shot went exactly where I intended it to, and the buck fell as if the very hand of God struck him. Two more of his kin did the same, at ranges from 125 to 250 yards, and I couldn’t recover any of the bullets; the LRX gave excellent penetration. The Barnes LRX and that Heym SR30 kept the Mozambican village of Peau well fed. If you appreciate the performance of the Barnes bullets – more than 90 percent weight retention and deep, deep penetration – combined with the best accuracy of the lot, try some LRXs and I’ll bet you’ll be happy. They’re available in 6.5mm, .270, 7mm, .30 and .338 calibers. ASJ
Texas Armament & Technology (TxAT) and Aguila Ammunition are pleased to announce the Lucky Shooter Sweepstakes. They have teamed up with FN Firearms, Aimpoint Inc., SureFire, SOG Knives, Otis Technology, Alien Gear Holsters, and Bigfoot Gun Belts to give one lucky shooter a free gun, a case of ammo and loads of gear from some of the best companies in the industry.
Ultra Dual Output flashlight, the new SOG SYNC II multi-tool, the Otis Technology .40 cal DEFENDER cleaning system, Alien Gear Holster’s Cloak Tuck 3.0, and a Bigfoot Gun Belts Steel Reinforced Leather Gun Belt. It’s Christmas in March for one lucky winner.
Customers can enter the Lucky Shooter Sweepstakes by visiting the contest website at www.aguilaammo.com/promotions. A valid email address is required for entry and contestants can earn additional giveaway entries by sharing the promotion via social media. Additional contest rules apply.
The contest runs from March 17th – April 2nd. The winner will be announced via social media on April 3rd. Don’t forget to enter and tell your friends too!
About Aguila Ammunition
Aguila Ammunition, founded in 1961, is manufactured in Cuernavaca, Morelos, Mexico by Industrias Tecnos, S.A. de C.V. As one of the largest rimfire manufacturers in the world, Aguila utilizes cutting-edge technology to manufacture quality rimfire, centerfire and shotshell ammunition. Aguila offers a complete range of products for the self-defense, sport shooting, hunting, law enforcement and military markets. Texas Armament & Technology is the exclusive North American distributor for Aguila Ammunition.
About Texas Armament & Technology
Texas Armament & Technology (TxAT) is the exclusive distributor of Aguila Ammunition in the U.S. and Canadian markets. TxAT specializes in distributing high-quality brands around the globe including distribution into the Mexican market. From marketing strategy, planning and implementation to operational optimization and logistics, TxAT has the experience to bring products to market both domestically and abroad, delivering solutions that deliver results.
For more information on Aguila Ammunition, visit the company website at www.aguilaammo.com or contact:
Texas Armament & Technology/Aguila Ammunition
Phone: (832) 672-1899
Posted in Industry News Tagged with: aguilaammo, aliengearnation, AlwaysOn, AlwaysReady, Ammo, battleproven, bigfoot, feedyourfirearm, fnamerica, guns, leatherbelt, OtisTech, SF, SmartGunCare, SOGKnives, SureFire, sweepstakes
I ﬁrmly believed the ﬁrst three-shot group was a ﬂuke – my wiggles must’ve accounted for my waggles – as it printed just under a half inch, but when the second and third did the same thing, I was a convert. They gave good velocities out of my 24-inch barrel – 2,965 feet per second, to be precise – but would they perform as advertised in the ﬁeld?
You see, the Scirocco is a bonded-core boat-tail bullet, with a very thick jacket and a black polymer tip. It is designed to not only ﬂy accurately – which it proved to be true – but to give the consummate blend of expansion and penetration. Many cup-and-core boat tails have a tendency to have the copper jacket separate from the lead core upon impact at higher velocities, and that didn’t make me happy. The Scirocco’s thick jacket is chemically bonded to the lead core to hold things together should you strike bone, yet the jacket tapers down toward the nose, allowing for good expansion. That expansion creates a larger wound channel, which destroys more vital tissue and causes death sooner.
MY FIRST FIELD TEST was in Wyoming, where I would be hunting pronghorn antelope. Anyone who has hunted the Great Plains of the American West knows that the wind is always blowing, and sometimes it blows good and hard. I found the antelope I wanted after a couple of hours glassing the prairie, and it required a stalk of just over a mile. I lay prone over a small mound, with cactus everywhere it shouldn’t have been, and settled the crosshairs of my Winchester 70 on the buck’s shoulder 215 yards away. Even through the recoil, I could see that the antelope’s feet drew up to his body as he fell earthward, stone dead, and in that moment, this bullet captured my undivided attention.
I used it the next spring on a black bear hunt in Quebec. While I knew the shots were going to be inside of 75 yards, as it was a baited hunt, I wanted to see how the bullet would handle the tough shoulder bones of a bear. Canada’s ever-changing weather kept the action slow for the ﬁrst few days, but a warm-up later in the week drew the bears out like moths to a ﬂame. A 200-plus-pound boar decided to pay a visit to my bait, and I decided to ruin his day. I had loaded the 180-grain Scirocco in my .308 Winchester, to a muzzle velocity of 2,450 fps, and the bullet took him without issue, despite punching through both shoulders. I couldn’t recover either bullet, which was no problem with me, but I was highly impressed with the performance.
Since then, I’ve loaded this bullet in many different cartridges, from the 6.5×55 Swede and 6.5-284 Norma, to the 7mm Remington Ultra Magnum, to many of the .30s including the .308 Winchester and .30-06 Springﬁeld, the .300 Holland and Holland Magnum, and the huge cases like the .300 Remington Ultra Magnum and .30-378 Weatherby Magnum. I’ve even loaded the 210-grain Scirocco in the .338 Winchester Magnum with great results.
THE OUTCOME IS USUALLY THE SAME: almost all of the riﬂes (with the exception of one particularly evil .264 Winchester Magnum) gave subMOA accuracy and excellent ﬁeld performance. The few bullets we’ve been able to recover from game animals have retained between 80 and 95 percent of their weight, with expansion running right around 2 times to 2.5 times caliber dimension. My wife loves the 150-grain Scirocco II in her .308 Winchester, as it offers less recoil yet great terminal ballistics; her Savage Lady Hunter prints ½-inch groups with this load.
The Scirocco is available in calibers from .224 up to and including .338, and I wouldn’t hesitate to go hunting with this bullet in any situation shy of the truly large and dangerous game that requires a larger bore and heavier bullet. With the Scirocco, between my own hunts and those of friends and colleagues, we have taken animals ranging in size from deer and antelope to caribou to African plains game to elk and moose. Swift only makes two softpoints – the Scirocco and the A-Frame – and that’s one of the best combinations on the market. ASJ
If you were to bet that “research” forms the core of projectile manufacturer G2 Research’s company beliefs, you would be correct. And along with research comes development, as in new products. We sat down with G2 Research to learn more about the company’s origins and what new rounds we might soon see.
G2 Research We thought we were starting small, but our internet presence went viral within a month of release. The servers handling our website crashed four times in a three-day period. At that point, we went in with everything we had.
ASJ The projectile in your cartridges looks devastating the way it opens up like a proud ﬂower.
G2R The round you are referring to is the G2 Research Civic Duty. Our original round, the R.I.P., is designed to fragment, thus increasing stopping power and tissue damage. We found over the course of a year that it was too innovative for some people who were “set in their ways” when it comes to old-school tried and true. We set out to create the most expansion possible out of a solid copper projectile to ﬁll that need.
ASJ What calibers did you launch with, and what have proven to be the most popular?
G2R We started with the 9mm R.I.P. Demand for that round was so high for a ﬂedgling company it took a while to get our next round, the .380 R.I.P., out. In the time since, we have covered all the semiauto pistols, as well as introduced a riﬂe line for hunting, and a cold tracer for training and plinking. Now we are working to get the G2 Research Civic Duty out in more calibers and research and developing revolver calibers. Nine millimeter is by far the current favorite for shooters, though trends do change.
ASJ Do you have any plans to offer your projectiles for the reloading market?
G2R We load our rounds to such a ﬁne spec for performance that we feel a lot of homeloaders would overload or underload, thus decreasing the effectiveness of the round.
ASJ Is your ammo primarily for hunters, or for home protection?
G2R We provide mostly to the self-defense market. Interest has been building for our riﬂe rounds as more people test and evaluate them. We also received the California DNR lead-free certiﬁcation.
For more information, visit g2rammo.com. ASJ
Rifling was discovered in 15th century Germany and most likely took the science behind arrows, which are fletched in a way that the arrow spins, thereby increasing its accuracy. It did not gain popularity until the 18th century, and was a crucial tool for the young United States to beat the British in the Revolutionary War. Nowadays, gunsmiths use either cut rifling or button rifling to produce this effect, but either technique effectively adds raised lands and depreciated grooves along the length of the barrel that cause the bullet to rotate before it ever leaves the gun.
There are many factors that can affect the twist rate of a barrel. Even the same type of guns from different manufacturers can have different rates, and this can be very confusing to people who are new at purchasing or analyzing rifles. Furthermore, different bullets will require different twist rates for proper stabilization depending on their weight. For example, if you want to shoot more accurately over a longer distance with a gun such as the AR-15, you may decide to upgrade from a 62-grain bullet to a 77-grain bullet; the lighter bullet requires a twist rate of 1:8 while the heavier bullet in question requires a rate of 1:7; in fact, a much lighter 40-grain bullet only requires a twist rate of 1:12.
It is important to note that you could potentially use any grain bullet for the rifle, but the accuracy will vary at different distances, so it is important to know at what distance you would like to shoot. Furthermore, a lower ratio means an increased speed, so a twist rate of 1:7 will travel faster than one at 1:9, because it will complete a full rotation in only 7 inches compared to 9, and so it makes sense that a heavier bullet needs a higher twist rate to be accurate.
Since many gun manufacturers may use a different barrel twist rate for their gun, it is important to research before purchasing a rifle so that it can fit the intended requirements. Although it may be difficult to determine at what range you intend to fire the rifle most often, a little bit of gun training will allow you to determine your needs. For example, an expert marksmen may want to shoot at a longer range when he hunts out in the open, while someone who usually hunts in the woods may not need to fire at longer distances because there is usually increased coverage.
For a while many people believed that a slower twist rate would cause poor accuracy, which is true, but some also believe that having too high of a twist rate could “over-stabilize” lighter bullets, also decreasing accuracy. This idea has been debunked by ballistics experts, although firing a very light bullet through a gun with a very high twist rate could still decrease its structural integrity.
However, for the most part a higher twist rate will increase accuracy across the board, especially if closely paired with the correct bullet weight. Nowadays, almost all standard military-grade weaponry has a twist rate of 1:7, while you will find hardly any rifles now with twist rates less than 1:14.
It is also important to keep barrel lengths in mind. Comparing a 10.3″ AR-15 with a different model 18″ barrel, both with a 1:7 twist rate, shows that the smaller barrel is pretty accurate with 55- to 77-grain bullets, while the longer barrel was extremely accurate with higher grain bullets but virtually useless with the lighter options below 70-grain. Although it is impossible to tell exactly what sort of bullet and barrel combinations will be best, knowing a little about twist rates can make it easier to get close, and from there it’s just practice and trail and error.
SIG SAUER, Inc. today announced it has finalized plans to relocate its ammunition manufacturing operation from Eubank, Kentucky to a permanent site in Jacksonville, Arkansas. Documents were finalized with the state of Arkansas the last week of April following a preliminary announcement by Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson at the 2016 Las Vegas SHOT Show.
SIG SAUER will relocate its Elite Performance Ammunition manufacturing operation to an existing, and soon-to-be renovated, building in Jacksonville and anticipates employing 50 people in the initial relocation phase, with additional jobs planned for the future. The new site provides significant room for expansion, a key factor in the company’s decision to relocate to Jacksonville.
“We have been searching for a permanent relocation site for our ammunition division for several years and now, coupled with an excellent physical location and exceptional economic incentives provided by the State of Arkansas, we have found the ideal site,” said Dan Powers, president of the SIG SAUER Ammunition Division. “The new location in Jacksonville gives us the room we need to expand as we continue to grow and is also beneficial from a shipping and logistical standpoint. SIG SAUER is committed to becoming a major player in the world-wide ammunition markets. Our advanced technology will allow SIG SAUER to design and develop world-class, precision-performance ammunition, and our new facility will ensure room for even more state-of-the-art equipment, and a much larger ballistics test lab to facilitate our manufacturing and R&D processes.”
“SIG SAUER was one of the first calls I made as Governor, and I am delighted they chose our state when making the decision to expand,” said Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson. “The fact that a world-class company like SIG SAUER is choosing to do business in the state adds to our momentum in manufacturing, and we appreciate this significant commitment they are making to locate in Arkansas.”
SIG SAUER anticipates being up and running in the new Jacksonville ammunition facility by the end of the year. This move marks another milestone in the company’s commitment to become a total solutions provider in the shooting and hunting industry. In addition to designing and manufacturing the world’s most reliable firearms and ammunition, SIG SAUER is also a growing force in the silencers, optics, airguns and accessories sectors.
The guys from Demolition Ranch were out testing to see how bad a squib bullet can damage your pistol.
Watch this video and see a pistol fired with a squib bullet lodged in the barrel.
A squib bullet is a bullet that fails to leave your firearm’s barrel. This stuck bullet become a dangerous obstruction in your barrel. Firing a live cartridge into the back of a squib bullet spikes pressure, and may just kaboom your firearm.
This Glock pistol has a squib bullet stuck in the very end of the barrel. Demolition Ranch remotely fires this pistol with a squib. The Glock pistol does not explode, but jams into an inoperable mess.
When shooting firearms, always make sure that your projectile goes down range before you fire another round. Failure to do so can be catastrophic.
Story by Eric Nestor
Source: Youtube, Demolition Ranch
Who wouldn’t like to own a nice custom-made $3,000 rifle? Unfortunately, most people have a budget, but if you can’t afford one, don’t slit your wrist quite yet. If you already own a decent rifle, there are four things you can do that will improve its accuracy, and these are not going to be earth-shattering concepts or new revelations. I’m constantly surprised at how many people don’t do these simple steps. Just remember an old proverb: The simple things confound the wise.
Are your mounts tight? Is your scope mounted properly? Is your scope tight? If not, you’ll hit all over the board.
The next thing to think about in this category is whether or not the scope is actually functional. You tend to get what you pay for in optics; however, regardless of scope quality ensure that it is at least functioning within the parameters of the value. I’m careful with my scopes. I don’t throw them in the back of my pickup truck or strap them onto my four wheeler. This type of activity can be detrimental to the internal components of a scope. Any scope.
These are all basic things you should check just on the optic, but before you take a sledge hammer to a seemingly dysfunctional scope, let’s check three more items.
You may not always have a good rifle rest while hunting, but it’s imperative that you are stable when sighting in your rifle. I sight in on a steady table while using a Caldwell Lead Sled, a shooting rest used to brace the rifle, and it assists in recoil reduction. You don’t want 20 different factors affecting your shot, so you need to weed out the variables. At this point, we are just trying to determine what your rifle is capable of, not the shooter. If you don’t have a CLS, then sand bags can work great as well, or if you’re on a really tight budget, use pillows or blankets.
Out in the field I prefer a Harris bipod. I like the bigger one with the three-adjustment extendable legs, which go from 13½ to 29 inches. Hunting out on the prairie laying down is difficult because the sagebrush and grasses will block your field of vision. In a pinch you can carry two dowel rods taped together 6 inches from the end to use as a bipod to see over these obstacles.
To prove the importance of a good trigger I want you to try this: Make sure your rifle is unloaded and lay it on some pads. Make sure the safety is on, and go through the motions of
actually taking a shot. You will often notice that you start pulling off to one side. That’s what happens if you have a subpar trigger. An example would be an 8-pound trigger with a lot of creep and rough spots.
If you can really concentrate, you can overcome these pitfalls, but it takes total concentration on every shot. Why put yourself through that? If you’re so focused on pulling evenly, by the time it actually fires
you’ll need to gasp for air. It just takes too much concentration, and even then you won’t be able to totally overcome it.
The other day I went out to shoot my DPMS Bull 20. The trigger was horrible, and it was really windy outside. I focused really hard and got a 1½-inch group at 100 yards, and figured that was about all it was capable of. Then I ran down to Rise Armament in Broken Arrow, Okla., toured their factory and headed out on a coyote hunt. While there, Chris Barger, president of Rise Armament, threw one of their RA-535 Advanced Performance triggers in my DPMS. The RA is a 3.5-pound trigger with no creep. As I alluded to before, my original trigger rated somewhere between horrible and the worst trigger ever. I have buddies who like light triggers, but a 3½-pound pull is about right for me in
When I shot my DPMS again, from the same rest using the same Hornady match ammunition, I was able to obtain a three-shot, one-hole group. I was amazed! I can’t overstress the importance of a good trigger.
My hardcore reloading buddies will start wailing and gnashing their teeth, not to mention calling me a heretic, but reloading is not as critical as it was 50 years ago. Granted, you might have to test out four or five different manufacturers and different grains of bullets to find which one shoots best in your rifle, but you should be able to find something that will help maximize your accuracy. To shorten the learning process and save yourself from overshopping, call the manufacturer of your gun to see which bullet they say works best in your rifle. Usually, I just talk to my friends at Hornady and tell them what rifle, caliber, and twist rate I have. They are the professionals!
After determining what shoots best in your specific rifle, sight it in using your chosen ammuntion. Sure, you may switch around if you’re varmint hunting one day and big-game hunting the next, but sight it in every time you switch bullets.
Don’t assume that a 40-grain bullet will probably shoot 2 inches higher than a 55-grainer. That would make sense though, wouldn’t it? I thought so too. I not only shot 2 to 3 inches inches lower, but also 3 inches to the left. So don’t shoot multiple brands and grains of bullets and expect to have any degree of consistency.
I promise that if you employ these suggestions, you should start getting tighter groups. ASJ