Been a long time and future plans

I know it has been a very long time since my last post.  We had a wonderful vacation in Orlando.  Planning, packing, traveling, and post-trip recovery stopped me from posting on the blog.  I’m finally starting to catch up with life, and should be adding more content regularly.

I really love being on vacation with my family.  We had eight great days at Disney World, visited all the parks and even spent a day at each of the water parks.  We had been to WDW before, but this was our first stay at a Disney resort, and our first visit to the water parks.  I won’t ramble on too much, but will say it was HOT!  Somehow I found the guts to climb to the top of Summit Plummet and ride the slide almost straight down.  I was clocked at 71 mph.  It was also really great to see my parents, and I enjoyed spending a few days with them.  We even had a wonderful father, son, grandson brunch on Father’s Day.

My latest shooting related update:

I did a little ammo development just before/after my trip.  I worked up good recipe for 115 grain Hornady XTP and 121 grain Hornady HAP.  I had to take IMR7625 up to almost 8 grains (slightly compressed) to make major with the 115 gr bullet.  I was only getting an average of 166pf.  The 121 gr bullet made a nice 170pf at 7.5 grains.  Since I’ll need a little headroom, and I’ve been using 121 gr bullets in the past with a good feel, I’ll be using them at the Nationals.  The big difference between the new load and my old standby is the brass.  I was using Armscor 38 Super RL (rimless) and Startline SuperComp.  I had a lot of nose-dive issues (will full mags), and wanted to try some TJ brass.  Hornady was generous enough to send me a few boxes to try.

I also had another other unrelated magazine problem.  The best magazines for the Gold Team are made without spacing ribs.  Mine are the older ribbed style magazines.  The ribs don’t extend the full length of the magazine, which is no big deal with a standard base pad.  However, with an extended base pad, the cartridges fill the magazine below the end of the rib, which is an abrupt change in the width.  Frequently, the cartridges would bind and jam under the end of the rib.  The end result was that I couldn’t load them full.  I experimented with adding some spacers to extend the rib lower in the tube, and found that a great way to extend the rib is epoxy putty.  I was able to mold and cut the putty to form a perfect extension to the rib.

This weekend is the Columbia Cascade Sectional Championships.  Today we shot 7 great stages, and there another 5 tomorrow.  I was able to try the new brass and magazine modifications on several stages, and had absolutely no problems.  All the previous nose-dive issues are gone!  Furthermore, I can successfully load 23 rounds into my 140mm magazines.  In fact, my gun ran flawlessly through almost 200 rounds this morning.  I’m extremely geeked!  Now all I have to do is get myself ready for the Nationals.

Future Plans:

Until I get a large supply of primers, I have to assume that I only have 2000 to for practice and match ammo.  That’s not much!  As a result, I’ve ordered Steve Anderson’s dry-fire book, and hope to start a daily dry-fire practice regime as soon as it arrives.

I also have to start a packing list for the Nationals.  I’m sure I’ll have trouble deciding how much stuff to take, and what items are important.  I have to admit, attending local or regional matches are much more simple.  It is easy to load the car with extra ammo, tool kit, cooler, range bag, and range cart.  Flying to Las Vegas and staying in a hotel limits the amount of gear and extra stuff I can bring.  This could get quite interesting.

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